The Pilgrim Path (4-15-2020)
The Pilgrim Path---Mark's Gospel 2: 23-28
One Sabbath, he was going through the grain fields, and as they made their way, his disciples began to pluck heads of grain. And the Pharisees were saying to him, "Look, why are they doing what is not lawful on the Sabbath?" And he said to them, "Have you never read what David did, when he was in need and was hungry, he and those with him: how he entered the house of God, in the time of Abiathar the high priest, and ate the bread of the Presence, which it is not lawful for any but the priests to eat, and also gave it to those who were with him?" And he said to them, "The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath. So the Son of Man is lord even of the Sabbath."
---How would you have liked for the Pharisees to have "followed" you around? Not much fun--huh? One of my great professor's in college, Dr. Don Mackay, used to say, "A Pharisee is someone who believes they are perfectly holy---and it is their business---to inspect YOUR lack---of THEIR---holiness." Wow---that gets old. Well, you get a little of the picture of Jesus-- with the Pharisees. And Jesus---was---and is---perfectly Holy...
---From J. C. Ryle: "The Pharisees were mere formalists, if there ever were any in the world. They seem to have thought exclusively of the outward part, the husk, the shell, and the ceremonial of religion. They even added to these by traditions of their own. Their godliness was made up of washings, and fastings, and peculiarities in dress, and will-worship, while repentance, and faith, and holiness were comparatively overlooked..."
---As Lord of the Sabbath, Jesus turned the Pharisees "away" with a proper understanding of Holy Scripture. You have to love it: "The Sabbath was made for man." Again---from Bishop J. C. Ryle: "God made it for Adam in Paradise, and renewed it to Israel on Mount Sinai. It was made for all mankind, not for the Jew only, but for the whole family of Adam. It was made for man's benefit and happiness. It was for the good of his body, the good of his mind, and the good of his soul. It was given to him as a boon and a blessing, and not as a burden. This was the original institution."
---Westminster Confession of Faith, Chapter XXI, Section 7, As it is the law of nature, that, in general, a due proportion of time be set apart for the worship of God; so, in his Word, by a positive, moral, and perpetual commandment binding all men in all ages, he hath particularly appointed one day in seven, for the Sabbath, to be kept holy unto him: which from the beginning of the world to the resurrection of Christ, was the last day of the week; and, from the resurrection of Christ, was changed into the first day of the week, which, in Scripture, is called the Lord's day, and is to be continued to the end of the world, as the Christian Sabbath.
---We don't earn points with the Living Christ---all we possess flows from grace. But we need Him and we need the Sabbath. What a "remedy" for pandemics, pain, poverty, confusion, chaos, weariness---and worldliness...
---A Sabbath Survey of the Soul: to consider on The Day
Has the Bible become sweeter---more familiar?
Are aspects of redemption more "real" in your mind? so as to inform your praying? Your meditation?
Walk and talk with your children---talk about Sunday School / Morning --Evening sermons
Have texts of Scripture "settled" your heart before the Lord?
Have some biblical discussions "enriched" your family? Perhaps you've had to bring some Scripture to bear---just lately?
Has some Scripture led to some mercy--- or ministry of help to others --in Jesus' Name?
Have you prayed for others ---particularly some that may never pray for themselves?
This would be interesting: ask your children to draw a picture that represents the main message of their Sunday School Lesson. OR---Dad / Mom---You draw a picture---sketch---of Sunday Sermon---ask children---"what does this have to do with it?" We give you the text early enough---you could pray---and work it out. And---there's nothing wrong with laughing a bit!
Get out your World Map / Globe---Pray for a Missionary Family---as a family...learn more about the country where they minister...
****Was this Sabbath a really good day for my soul?
From C. H. Spurgeon: As I sat last year, under a wide spreading beech, I was pleased to mark with prying curiosity the singular habits of that most wonderful of trees, which seems to me to have an intelligence about it which other trees have not. I wondered at, and admired the beech, but I thought to myself, I do not think half as much of this beech tree as yonder squirrel does. I see him leap from bough to bough, and feel sure he dearly values the old beech tree, because he has his home somewhere inside it, in a hollow place; these branches are his shelter , and these beech nuts are his food. He lives upon the tree. It is his world, his playground, his home; indeed it is his everything to him, and it is not so to me, for I find my rest and food elsewhere. With God's Word it is well for us to be like squirrels, living in it, and living on it."
Grace & Peace in Jesus Our Lord, Pastor Jason