ESOCS Devotional 27 August 2023 – See the Ultimate Sabbath
MEMORY VERSE: “For six years you may plant your fields and prune your vineyards and harvest your crops, but during the seventh year the land will enjoy a Sabbath year of rest to the Lord. Do not plant your crops or prune your vineyards during the entire year.”Leviticus 25:3 & 4 NLT
TEXT: LEVITICUS 25:1-24 (KJV)
And the Lord spake unto Moses in mount Sinai, saying,
2 Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, When ye come into the land which I give you, then shall the land keep a sabbath unto the Lord.
3 Six years thou shalt sow thy field, and six years thou shalt prune thy vineyard, and gather in the fruit thereof;
4 But in the seventh year shall be a sabbath of rest unto the land, a sabbath for the Lord: thou shalt neither sow thy field, nor prune thy vineyard.
5 That which groweth of its own accord of thy harvest thou shalt not reap, neither gather the grapes of thy vine undressed: for it is a year of rest unto the land.
6 And the sabbath of the land shall be meat for you; for thee, and for thy servant, and for thy maid, and for thy hired servant, and for thy stranger that sojourneth with thee.
7 And for thy cattle, and for the beast that are in thy land, shall all the increase thereof be meat.
8 And thou shalt number seven sabbaths of years unto thee, seven times seven years; and the space of the seven sabbaths of years shall be unto thee forty and nine years.
9 Then shalt thou cause the trumpet of the jubile to sound on the tenth day of the seventh month, in the day of atonement shall ye make the trumpet sound throughout all your land.
10 And ye shall hallow the fiftieth year, and proclaim liberty throughout all the land unto all the inhabitants thereof: it shall be a jubile unto you; and ye shall return every man unto his possession, and ye shall return every man unto his family.
11 A jubile shall that fiftieth year be unto you: ye shall not sow, neither reap that which groweth of itself in it, nor gather the grapes in it of thy vine undressed.
12 For it is the jubile; it shall be holy unto you: ye shall eat the increase thereof out of the field.
13 In the year of this jubile ye shall return every man unto his possession.
14 And if thou sell ought unto thy neighbour, or buyest ought of thy neighbour’s hand, ye shall not oppress one another:
15 According to the number of years after the jubile thou shalt buy of thy neighbour, and according unto the number of years of the fruits he shall sell unto thee:
16 According to the multitude of years thou shalt increase the price thereof, and according to the fewness of years thou shalt diminish the price of it: for according to the number of the years of the fruits doth he sell unto thee.
17 Ye shall not therefore oppress one another; but thou shalt fear thy God:for I am the Lord your God.
18 Wherefore ye shall do my statutes, and keep my judgments, and do them; and ye shall dwell in the land in safety.
19 And the land shall yield her fruit, and ye shall eat your fill, and dwell therein in safety.
20 And if ye shall say, What shall we eat the seventh year? behold, we shall not sow, nor gather in our increase:
21 Then I will command my blessing upon you in the sixth year, and it shall bring forth fruit for three years.
22 And ye shall sow the eighth year, and eat yet of old fruit until the ninth year; until her fruits come in ye shall eat of the old store.
23 The land shall not be sold for ever: for the land is mine, for ye are strangers and sojourners with me.
24 And in all the land of your possession ye shall grant a redemption for the land.
The first time the scripture mentioned the issue of the Sabbath was in Genesis 2:1-3. It says: “So the creation of the heavens and the earth and everything in them was completed. On the seventh day, having finished his task, God rested from all his work. And God blessed the seventh day and declared it holy; because it was the day he rested from all his work of creation.” Thereafter, He commanded the Israelites to observe the Sabbath, after so many years between the time of creation and the establishing of the nation of Israel (Ex. 20:8-11). In Colossians 2:17, the scripture refers to such as things “which are a shadow of things to come…”
God’s work for six days and rest on the seventh day was symbolic of what He wanted in the future. As Christians, He would want us to labour now in our Christian race so that we rest in the bosom of Christ at the end of the world, which would be the ultimate Sabbath. Therefore, let us understand that what we do with our lives now would determine whether we would enjoy the millennium Sabbath that would follow, after the Second Coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.
In John 9:4, our Lord Jesus sets for us a good example of what we should be doing now that we still live; it is a wise counsel that we should not ignore. He says, “I must work the works of Him who sent me while it is day; the night is coming when no man can work.” For us, the night is that time when we breathe our last and depart this world. At that time, there shall be no opportunity for repentance. There shall be no chance to resist the urge to sin or try to live a holy life or try to do good. We would not have the opportunity redeem the time we may have wasted (Eph. 5:16). At that time, the end has come for us and whatever we do not do now to guarantee that we would spend our eternity in heaven; we would not be able to do then. Therefore, now is the time for us to work out our salvation with the fear of God in us (Phil. 2:12).
Let us turn our hearts and minds away from the things and pleasures of this world and turn them to the real thing, which is seeking the kingdom of God, and its righteousness (Matt. 6:33), so that we would live in eternity with Jesus. Our Lord says to us: “But you shouldn’t be so concerned about perishable things like food. Spend your energy seeking eternal life that I, the Son of Man, can give you. For God the Father has sent me for that very purpose” (Jn. 6:27 – NLT). Here, food stands for things of the world, which are the things of the flesh. We should concentrate on things of the Spirit, which are all about the kingdom of God. If we do this, it would make us not to be carnally minded, which would make us enemies of God; we cannot please God (Rom. 8:5-8). We would lose our eternity.
- Write out ten things you would do to enable you qualify to enter the ultimate Sabbath.
- What steps are you going to take to achieve them?
- Pray the Holy Spirit to empower you with the spirit of faithfulness.
FURTHER READING: 1 Samuel 18:1-16; Judges 5:1-12; Romans 14:1-17; Revelation 22:1-17
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ESOCS Devotional 27 August 2023