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Devotion for the Second Sunday after Pentecost (Year B)

Our devotion for today focuses on the Old Testament Reading and comes from The Ten Commandments Will Not Budge.

Scripture Readings

Deuteronomy 5:12–15
Psalm 81:1–10
2 Corinthians 4:5–12
Mark 2:23—3:6

Devotional Reading

What is so often regarded and spoken of as a burdensome duty is rather intended by God to be a blessing, suited to meet the needs of our own nature. Man is both a physical body and a living spirit, and each part of our make-up has its needs and wants that must be supplied if it is to live and function and thrive normally. In His Third Commandment God gave His people time for each. That their physical life might go on, God gave them six sevenths of their time to plow and sow and harvest, to spin and weave, and by their labor to supply their physical needs. But lest the higher side of their nature, that precious, undying soul, that was made in the image of God, be deprived and starved, that it, too, might have its needs and wants satisfied, God appointed that each seventh day be a rest day, wholly devoted to Him. They were not to slave away at the grinding tasks of earth all of the time and by denying and starving their spiritual natures slowly to turn into sodden beasts of toil. Each seventh day the duties and tasks of this earthly life were to be laid aside, and this day was to be devoted to fellowship with God. On this day the living soul was to seek out God’s presence in God’s house and in communion with God to renew its strength. On this day the mind was to search, weigh, and ponder, embrace, and rejoice in, God’s revealed truth. On this day the heart was to be warmed and inflamed at the fire of God’s love for man. On this day man’s will was to be yielded to God’s will and pressed into the same mold. So the spirit of man, each seventh day communing with God, was to drink in of His life and so enjoy increasingly that more abundant life that is ours only in ever more intimate union with God.

In following this Commandment through the pages of Holy Writ, we note that this is the only one of God’s ten laws which He Himself has somewhat altered in the course of time. It had a slightly different meaning for God’s Old Testament children than it has for us today. He who made the change was He who was Lord also over the Sabbath, Jesus Himself. Perhaps the change can be expressed best in this way: God dealt with His Old Testament children as with minor children, to whom every detail of duty must be exactly prescribed; while in these New Testament days of fullest grace He deals with us as grownups, as adults, whose love can be trusted to give Him His fullest due.

Devotional reading is from The Ten Commandments Will Not Budge, pages 26–27 © 1951 Concordia Publishing House. All rights reserved.

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