Read Deuteronomy 5:12-15
12 Observe the Sabbath day by keeping it holy, as the Lord your God has commanded you. 13 You have six days each week for your ordinary work, 14 but the seventh day is a Sabbath day of rest dedicated to the Lord your God. On that day no one in your household may do any work. This includes you, your sons and daughters, your male and female servants, your oxen and donkeys and other livestock, and any foreigners living among you. All your male and female servants must rest as you do. 15 Remember that you were once slaves in Egypt, but the Lord your God brought you out with his strong hand and powerful arm. That is why the Lord your God has commanded you to rest on the Sabbath day. (NLT)
The Ten Commandments are generally easy enough to understand though harder to consistently keep in practice. This commandment about the Sabbath, however, is more challenging at both levels.
Much ink has been spilt on the nature of the Sabbath and how we observe it. But if we can reduce it to one simple challenge it is that one day in seven is to be special. We are to remember who God is and what he has done rather than letting the busyness of our lives crowd out such memories.
There is suggestion elsewhere that this is also good for our own human functioning. We were not made to merely work. God rested, so can we. The manic desire to make money, be successful, pursue happiness, all can drive us to distraction. And can cause us to forget to remember who we are and what we were made for.
All considerations of whether we should visit the supermarket on Sunday or whether Sunday or Saturday is the contemporary ‘Sabbath’ are secondary. We are to take time to celebrate and remember. We enter a rhythm of activity and rest and so truly worship our Creator. We actively work for God and yet seek stillness in being refreshed by God.
To keep the Sabbath is to keep life in perspective.