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A Day of Rest

And on the seventh day God ended His work which He had done, and He rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had done. Then God blessed the seventh day and sanctified it, because in it He rested from all His work which God had created and made. Genesis 2:2-3 (NKJV)

Labor day is a day of rest for many people across the United States.  Originally started in 1882 by the Central Labor Union to create a holiday for workers, it later became a federal holiday in 1884.  One of the reasons for choosing the first Monday of September to celebrate Labor Day was simply to add a holiday in the long gap between Independence Day and Thanksgiving.  Holiday’s had become a time for us to take a day off and rest.

I actually think there are many people who will work harder on Labor Day than they would had they just went to their work place.  Playing, barbequing, and just plain running hard seem to be the plan on most people’s agenda each Labor Day, or just about any day off for that matter. But long before the Central Labor Union devised a holiday to celebrate so workers could take an extra day’s rest from the work; God had already created such a day — it was called the seventh day, and it was for rest. 

Let me be clear here, God didn’t need to rest, nor was He all tuckered-out from making the universe, the galaxies, or the billions of stars.  He fatigued because He made the Earth along with everything on it — He rested to set an example for mankind to follow, because He knew we had limitations.  After all, He created us.   God knew we would need to take one day off in every seven to rest and be refreshed.  He knew we would need a Sabbath day if we were going to be successful in life. 

As unfortunate as it is, many people will utilize their day off each week to work at some other project or passion, and for some this quickly becomes a patterned way of living.  Unfortunately it comes with a price, because when we choose to do this we actually end up suffering physically, mentally, emotionally, and even spiritually.  In the end we really don’t get ahead at all, and we will usually find we have lost ground, suffering from stress, mental illness, and all sorts of physical and spiritual afflictions.

It is not my heart to tell you what to do with your day off, or to condemn overtime in your life every now and then.  Nor am I being legalistic and saying a person cannot work or play on a Saturday or Sunday, or that they can “only” worship on one of those two days, because this is not scriptural.  In fact, Jesus made it abundantly clear when He said, “The Sabbath was made for man, and not man for the Sabbath” (Mark 2:27).  What I would say though is this — God modeled the Sabbath day of rest to give us a healthy principle to follow, and we would be wise to continue to follow it. 

I want to encourage you to think and pray upon these things today.  I hope and pray you have a restful day off of work, and that you are refreshed and refueled, both physically and spiritually.  God bless.

STUDY QUESTION: According to Genesis 2:2-3, what principle did God model for us?

PERSONAL INVENTORY: Are you physically resting at least one day a week? 

PRACTICAL APPLICATION: Choose to take a day to physically rest each week so God can replenish and refuel you.  

MAKE THIS YOUR PRAYER TODAY: Father, thank You for modeling a day of rest for us to implement into our lives.  Help me to trust in this principle and not fall to the temptation to work instead.  I ask this in Jesus’ precious name, amen…

Be blessed, Pastor Scott


Copyright ©2017 by Pastor Scott Wright.
Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Bible text from the New King James Version is not to be reproduced in copies or otherwise by any means except as permitted in writing by Thomas Nelson, Inc., Attn: Bible Rights and Permissions, P.O. Box 141000, Nashville, TN 37214-1000