Great Commission Church of God

"Are You Taking The Sabbath For Granted?"
by Kristian Kristiansen

Do you remember the thrill you experienced when you first came to know that God's true rest day had not actually been lost? Lost, yes, to the majority of the world, but still plainly revealed in God's Word, which is Truth. Do you remember the eagerness, the dedication and the zeal with which you originally kept it, after having conquered the initial obstacles of job, family and friends?

The Sabbath was like a "first love," so to speak. Like the proverbial "wife of your youth," you truly rejoiced in it. You were blessed by it.

But what has happened? Has your "delight" in the Sabbath faded with the passage of time? There is a saying that familiarity breeds contempt. Is that true in your case? Have you simply "gotten used to it?"

And just what do I mean by that? Let me illustrate. An old Indian was once asked to define the term "conscience." He did so by comparing it with a sharp-edged instrument in his breast. "When I do something wrong," he reflected, "it turns around, and it hurts. When I continue in doing this, the edges finally disappear, and it doesn't hurt any longer."

Has your "conscience" become dull regarding the Sabbath due to its weekly recurrence? Because the Sabbath is as sure to come as the rising of tomorrow's sun, have you been guilty of taking it for granted, and in this way have forsaken a "first love?"

What would happen if you started taking your wife for granted? It would no doubt lead to a neglect of appreciation and honor where honor is due. Your marital relationship would enter dangerous grounds.

A booklet by Kenneth J. Holland, entitled The Magnificent Seventh (Pacific Press Publishing Association, 1980), illustrates this concept very well in a slightly humorous way:

If I had seven ladies lined up in a row and the seventh one happened to be my wife, would it make any difference which one I walked up to and slipped my arm around? If you knew my wife, you would know it would make a difference! Why is it all right for me to show this kind of affection toward only one of the seven? The first one might be a great deal closer and much handier, but only with the seventh am I to have any special kind of relationship, for the reason that once upon a time this lady and I walked down the aisle of a church and were set aside for one another in a very special way.

As long as I live and that woman lives, our relationship to each other must be different from our relationship to anybody else on earth. this is exactly what happened back there on the seventh day of creation. God set aside a specific day for a specific relationship between that day and man. As long as the Sabbath continues, as long as time continues, my relationship to that one specific day must be different from my relationship to any other day (pages 49, 50).

In his letter to the Ephesians, Apostle Paul writes (possibly alluding to the whole context of a traditional Jewish Sabbath meal, including the serving of wine and the singing of zemirot, special Sabbath songs):

And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit; Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord; Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ; (Ephesians 5:18-20)

One of the most vital keys to avoiding the dangerous pitfall of taking things (in this case, God's Sabbath) for granted, is, simply put: thankfulness. It is the antidote.

This coming Sabbath, why not take time out to meditate upon and to give God the thanks for the manifold blessings He has provided you: faith, hope and love; truth, knowledge and understanding; a wonderful wife or husband; children, along with the awesome, but happy responsibility of bringing them up in the way they should go; health, happiness and your every day needs; and last, but not least, the Sabbath-rest itself?

The Sabbath is a privilege bestowed upon us by the hand of a loving and benevolent Creator. Are you taking it for granted? Don't you do it! It is far too precious.

Copyright 2001 by Kristian Kristiansen. All Rights Reserved.

Last Updated:
January 15, 2001