Outlines and Audio Sermons:
Dr. Walter D. Huyck Jr. D.Min.

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The Ten Commandments

A Renewing God

Exodus 20.8-11

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[We started our study of the Ten Commandments by considering the nature of the law of God and discovered how the moral law of God, once written on stone is now written, through the indwelling presence of the Holy Spirit, upon the living flesh of our hearts.  For the lost the law is a schoolmaster, revealing their sinfulness and lostness, and striving to bring them to receive the Lord Jesus Christ as their personal Lord and Savior. For the saved the law is now living and alive within them, activated and accentuated by the love of God within each child of God.  The law is not nullified but it is more real than ever, it is the natural result of the love of Christ within us.] 

[Therefore, the Ten Commandments and their fulfillment in our Christian lives becomes a confirmation of our salvation.  The willing and joyful fulfillment of the Ten Commandments is the Helmet of Salvation that affirms the relationship we now have with our Heavenly Father.] 

[In our study of the Ten Commandments we have discovered,] 

  • [1st Commandment – The Preeminence of God - Jehovah God is preeminent because there is no other God.  He, and He alone is God.]
  • [2nd Commandment The Living God – Jehovah God is the only living God. Because there are no other god’s.  Our Heavenly Father is Jealous for our souls that we might walk with him.  Idols or false god’s will only alienate us from God and rob us of the eternal life He reserves and desires for each of us.]
  • [3rd Commandment A Worthy God – Jehovah God, as the only living God, is worthy of all my honor, and praise.  He is jealous for me that my soul and spirit might be saved and in eternal harmony with Him.]

[Today, in this 4th commandment we discover God’s provision for our walk with our Heavenly Father. God provides our access to Him, for the Jews of the Old Testament through the priesthood and sacrifices, for us today a far better way is given.  We have direct access to our Heavenly Father through the eternal sacrifice made by our Lord Jesus Christ.  But we must come to Him, seeking a relationship with Him, hence our need for a Sabbath Day.] 

A.    A Special Day (vs 8) [- Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy. – Our Heavenly Father desires that He might walk with us and talk with us in our spiritual journey.  The command to establish and honor a Sabbath Day is an expression of God’s desire to maintain a growing intimacy with His people.] 

1.      The Sabbath Day (vs 8) [-Remember the sabbath day, . . .  - Just what is a Sabbath Day?] 

[Sabbath -  הַשַּׁבָּ֖֜ת (Hb)  - . . . the seventh day of the week, known in many cultures as “Saturday,” an important day dedicated to rest and worship (Ex 16:23); 2. LN 67.177 week, i.e., unit of seven days (Lev 23:15+); 3. LN 23.78-23.87 sabbath, rest period, i.e., a period of time for resting, which may or not be the seventh day of the week, with a focus on this as a period for rest (Lev 16:31; 23:32(2x); 25:2, 4(2),6, 8(2x); 26:34(2),35, 43; 2Ch 36:21+)[1] ] 

[Hence the Hebrew word Sabbath means “take a break” or “just relax for a bit.”  It emphasizes our need to set aside some time for physical and spiritual rest and renewal.   It also emphasizes that fact that as long as you are doing what you normally do on a given day you will miss out on something important for your life.] 

[Work, your family, and the affairs of life have a way of demanding more and more time.  Often our life’s circumstances will bring us to a point where we are so consumed by the series of events that naturally demand our time that we in essence loose control of our daily schedule.  In other words our schedule begins to schedule itself. The larger your family, the more demanding your schedule and the less control over your schedule you will seem to have.] 

[In commanding the Sabbath Day God is saying that we need to regularly break the devouring beast of our schedule to purposefully rest and renew ourselves.  And in commanding, Remember the sabbath day, . . . Our Heavenly Father tells us to make this weekly diversion and priority in our lives.] 

2.      A Special Day (vs 8; Heb 9.22) [- Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy. – Not only does our Heavenly Father say remember the Sabbath day but He tells us to keep it special.  The word used in our Lord’s command is the word holy, which means,] 

[Holy - לְקַדְּשֽׁ֗וֹ  (Hb) - be sacred, consecrated, i.e., dedicate to service and loyalty to God, and so involving proper conduct (as prescribed) of any person or object so dedicated (Hag 2:12); (nif) be consecrated (Ex 29:43); (piel) consecrate, dedicate (Ge 2:3); (pual) be dedicated, be consecrated (2Ch 26:18; 31:6; Ezr 3:5; Eze 48:11+); (hif) set apart, consecrate, dedicate, regard as holy (Lev 22:2); (hitp) consecrate themselves (Ex 19:22); 2. LN 88.24-88.35 (qal) be holy, i.e., be in a state of having superior moral qualities, with behavior which is positively unique and pure, in contrast to other corrupt standards (Isa 65:5); (nif) show oneself holy (Lev 22:32); (piel) make holy (Lev 20:8); (hif) regard as holy (Isa 29:23b); (hitp) show holiness (Eze 38:23); 3. LN 11.12-11.54 (pual) saints, God’s people, i.e., pertaining to persons who belong to God, and as such constitute a religious entity (Isa 13:3+); 4. LN 88.24-88.35 (hif) honor as holy, i.e., feel reverence to honor something or someone as holy (Isa 8:13)[2] ] 

[Our Lord is telling us the make this day unlike any other day in that it ought to be, it must be, a day given particularly to God.  Holiness is something that can only be attributed to God.  God is holy and we are not.  The only way we can ever hope to be holy is to give ourselves purposefully to the things of God, as God demands.  In other words, in order for us to be holy and separated unto God we must worship God, God’s way.] 

[Something that is holy is something that is separated to God and for God.  Therefore the second part of the Sabbath Day is that it be a sacred day.  We must strive to keep it given to God.  Hence, to make a day, a day of rest, might mean going fishing, going golfing, or my personal favorite going for a motorcycle ride, but it would not be a Sabbath Day because those things do not separate us unto God or make us holy.  To be holy we must give ourselves to God, God’s way.  That requires worship.] 

[For the Jews, when this command was given, holiness required sacrifices.  Why?] 

[Hebrews 9:22 22 And almost all things are by the law purged with blood; and without shedding of blood is no remission.]

[The cleansing required to achieve holiness was only available through a sacrifice and a sacrifice required worship.  My friends you are not holy just because you think you are holy, holiness is only realized through the atoning blood of our Lord Jesus Christ and His continual cleansing in our lives.  But this holiness speaks of keeping the Day of the Sabbath uniquely given to God.] 

B.     The Sabbath Day (vs 9-10) [- Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work: 10 But the seventh day is the sabbath of the LORD thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates: - In giving this command to Israel our Lord also gave them instructions about how to keep the Sabbath Day God’s Day 

1.      Servile Work (Exo 31.12-18; 16.22-23) 

Exodus 31:12-18 12 And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, 13 Speak thou also unto the children of Israel, saying, Verily my sabbaths ye shall keep: for it is a sign between me and you throughout your generations; that ye may know that I am the LORD that doth sanctify you. 14 Ye shall keep the sabbath therefore; for it is holy unto you: every one that defileth it shall surely be put to death: for whosoever doeth any work therein, that soul shall be cut off from among his people. 15 Six days may work be done; but in the seventh is the sabbath of rest, holy to the LORD: whosoever doeth any work in the sabbath day, he shall surely be put to death. 16 Wherefore the children of Israel shall keep the sabbath, to observe the sabbath throughout their generations, for a perpetual covenant. 17 It is a sign between me and the children of Israel for ever: for in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, and on the seventh day he rested, and was refreshed. 18 And he gave unto Moses, when he had made an end of communing with him upon mount Sinai, two tables of testimony, tables of stone, written with the finger of God.] 

[As God explains the sacredness of the Sabbath Day to Israel we get a sense of how strongly God felt about this day.] 

[Rested and Refreshed - A part of the goal of the Sabbath Day is revealed in verse 17 where the Bible says God rested and was refreshed.  Therefore, we must understand that we must break the daily cycle of things so that we might be renewed and strengthened.  The Hebrew word translated rested here means to come to a stop.] 

[Rested - שָׁבַ֖ת (Hb) - 1. cease, stop, be at a standstill (intrans.) Gn 8:22; w.min Gn 2:2f, w. min + inf. Je 31:36; w. min stay away from La 5:14; — 2. stop working, take a holiday Ex 16:30; subj. land Lv 26:34f; = keep sabbath Ex 23:12; šābat šabbāt keep sabbath Lv 23:32.[3]]  

[Once we come to a stop we can then allow our bodies, mind, and spirit to recuperate from life’s struggles and stress.] 

[Refreshed - וַיִּנָּפַֽשׁ (Hb) - exhale, = catch one’s breath, refresh onesf. Ex 23:12 31:17 2S 16:14.[4] ] 

[The picture is of one running in a race or strenuously exerting oneself and stopping to catch their breath.  We must, on a regular basis stop and catch our breath.  While this certainly refers to a physical recuperation it is also emphasizing a spiritual renewal.  Our physical state is not the only state of our being that must be refreshed we often need to stop and catch our spiritual breath.] 

[The Importance of our Restoration -  There are many in our day who smirk at the idea of a Sabbath Day.  Of course, there have always been people who thought they knew better than God.  But God expresses how important this Holy Day of Recuperation is, God command that all who failed to honor the Sabbath should be put to death (vs 14,15). In this grave decree we learn just how incredibly important our spiritual renewal is.  We must learn that our physical, mental, and spiritual well being rests upon these personal sabbaticals.] 

[Notice in Exodus 31.15 that God singles out work as the activity that must be stopped on the Sabbath.  Now in the descriptions found in the Bible and the statements of our Lord Jesus Christ in the New Testament I have come to personally coin the term Servile Work in relation to the Sabbath.  I define servile work as that work which you normally do on a daily basis.  If you are a farmer then stop farming for a day, if you are a doctor then stop practicing for a day, if you are a house wife then stop house wife-ing for a day.] 

[Let me give you the example of a house wife.  While in the wilderness God rained down manna on Israel and everyday Israel would gather up some manna, prepare it and eat it.  Except on the Sabbath Day.  On the Sabbath Day no manna would come, but Israel was commanded to gather up twice as much manna on Friday and to prepare enough for two days (Exo 16.22-23).  Wives do everything you can on the day before the Sabbath, so that you can have a Sabbath of rest on the Sabbath.] 

[Now, there are some things that just have to be done on the Sabbath.  Animals have to be fed and watered.  Animals in danger have to be protected.  People need to be cared for and life must be preserved.  But there are many things that we do not have to do, but choose to do that make the Sabbath day just another ordinary day.  We must, as much as possible, make our Sabbath Day a holy and peculiar day given to God.] 

2.      Sanctimonious Wonder (Luke 13.10-16) [- Now we must be careful that we do not do what the Jewish religious leaders did with God’s command concerning the Sabbath.  They took God’s command so seriously that they treated it ridiculously.  They came up with the sabbatical mile which taught that you could only walk so far on the Sabbath day before it was considered work.  Someone has said that they had a sabbatical law that stated that if you had flee and scratched your head you were hunting and therefore working, I don’t really know if this was really a true ordinance or not, but it makes for an interesting example.] 

[While we should not do servile work on the Sabbath we can and must be compassionate on the Sabbath.  Luke records,] 

[Luke 13:10-16 10 And he was teaching in one of the synagogues on the sabbath. 11 And, behold, there was a woman which had a spirit of infirmity eighteen years, and was bowed together, and could in no wise lift up herself. 12 And when Jesus saw her, he called her to him, and said unto her, Woman, thou art loosed from thine infirmity. 13 And he laid his hands on her: and immediately she was made straight, and glorified God. 14 And the ruler of the synagogue answered with indignation, because that Jesus had healed on the sabbath day, and said unto the people, There are six days in which men ought to work: in them therefore come and be healed, and not on the sabbath day. 15 The Lord then answered him, and said, Thou hypocrite, doth not each one of you on the sabbath loose his ox or his ass from the stall, and lead him away to watering? 16 And ought not this woman, being a daughter of Abraham, whom Satan hath bound, lo, these eighteen years, be loosed from this bond on the sabbath day?]

[The Jewish leaders had taken the heart, life and purpose right out of the Sabbath.  The Sabbath is all about life and living.  It is all about stopping the regular hustle and bustle of the work week and finding restoration and renewal and often our greatest restoration comes through helping other people in their times of physical and spiritual need.]

C.    A Sacred Day (vs 11) [- For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the LORD blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it.The Christian Lord’s Day, the first day of the week.  The Jews were commanded by God to honor the Sabbath Day in particular, which is the last day of the week or Saturday.   The example that was provided for them was God’s creative week and the fact that Jehovah God rest on the seventh day from His work, therefore the Jewish people should rest on the last day of the week following God’s example.  However, while the Christian Church has always honored a Christian Sabbath, the Christian Sabbath has always been on the first day of the week or on Sunday.   There has always been a great deal of debate between various Christian sects about when a born again Christian ought to Worship.  Whole denominations focus on Saturday Worship rather than Sunday Worship because Saturday is actually the Sabbath day according to the Old Testament.  So why do we worship on Sunday?] 

1.      A Particular Day (Acts 20.7; 1 Cor 16.2; 2 Tim 2.15) [– Grant R. Jeffrey, in his book Apocalypse, provides a great study about the early Church and Sunday Worship.  In this study early Church writers such as Ignatius (30-107 A.D.), Irenaeus (120-202 A.D.), and Theodoret are quoted in regard to the practice of Sunday Worship and all of them give essentially the same reason for the Sunday Worship of the Church, it is the day of our Lord’s Resurrection and our liberation.[5]] 

[In his study Grant notes how the early Church worshipped the Resurrected Lord Jesus Christ on Sunday, referred to as the Lord’s Day, while the Jewish Christians continued to worship on Saturday as well, the Jewish Sabbath.  However, gentile Christians were never asked or compelled to keep the Jewish Sabbath.  There are a number of references to these practices in the New Testament.] 

[Luke records,] 

[Acts 20:7 7 And upon the first day of the week, when the disciples came together to break bread, Paul preached unto them, ready to depart on the morrow; and continued his speech until midnight.]

[Paul wrote,]

[1 Corinthians 16:2 2 Upon the first day of the week let every one of you lay by him in store, as God hath prospered him, that there be no gatherings when I come. ]

[As a matter of fact, when the apostle Paul had returned to Jerusalem, as recorded in Acts 21.18-26, James asked Paul to honor the Jewish law and go to the temple and purify himself as an example to the Jewish Christians.  The Jewish Christians were encouraged to follow the traditions of their Jewish fathers and be Christians as well; which Paul did.  As a matter of fact this practice was the occasion when Paul was taken prisoner and would never see freedom again.  Concerning this occasion the Bible records,] 

[Acts 21:23-25 23 Do therefore this that we say to thee: We have four men which have a vow on them; 24 Them take, and purify thyself with them, and be at charges with them, that they may shave their heads: and all may know that those things, whereof they were informed concerning thee, are nothing; but that thou thyself also walkest orderly, and keepest the law. 25 As touching the Gentiles which believe, we have written and concluded that they observe no such thing, save only that they keep themselves from things offered to idols, and from blood, and from strangled, and from fornication.]

[From the founding of the Christian Church we discover that there was a distinction between the Sabbath (Jewish) and The Lord’s Day (Christian).  It is not only recorded in the context of the Bible but in the commentaries and early writings of the Christian Church.] 

[The Law, The Jew, and The Christian – There is a lot of debate and discussion about the Old Testament laws and our Christian lives.  For instance there are those who say,] 

         [None of the Old Testament applies to Christians today; these essentially ignore the Old Testament.] 

         [Portions of the Old Testament apply to Christians today, these apply portions of the Old Testament to Christians today.] 

         [All of the Bible applies to Christians today, these search the whole Word of God for direction in their personal and spiritual lives.] 

[Folks, I search the whole of the Word of God for revelation and direction in my life.  However, I search the Old Testament with an eye and mind for the right divisions of the work of God.  The Bible says,] 

[2 Timothy 2:15 15 Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.]

[Rightly Dividing - ὀρθοτομοῦντα (Gk) - Cut in the right direction, divide correctly.  From rqo - meaning upright, erect, straight and toms - meaning cutting, sharp, keen.[6]  Hence, rightly dividing the Word of truth is the only correct translation of this Greek word.  Cutting produces divisions, thus there are divisions in the Word of God that must be identified and applied correctly.  Merely, translating this word as handling properly or rightly looses sight of the divisions implied in Scripture.] 

[I teach the Ten Commandments knowing that the New Testament reiterates the moral law contained in the Old Testament.  However, the civil law contained in the Old Testament was given to the nation of Israel and while it is a great example for other nations to follow it is still a civil law given to the Jewish nation.  The ceremonial law or Levitical law was given to the Jewish priesthood and much of it was fulfilled through the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ.  Therefore the sacrifices are no longer required and hold no atoning value, because those sacrifices all point to, and were fulfilled in, the Lord Jesus Christ.] 

[Some have argued that Leviticus nineteen, from which I quoted last week, just does not apply to us today.  For instance we don’t worry today about mixing materials in clothing and with whether our seeds are mixed or not.  Folks I do not just overlook any portion of scripture, I look into the Word of God looking to understand the character of my Heavenly Father and considering how the things I discover within every portion of my Bible helps me to refine my relationship and walk with Him.  For instance,] 

[Leviticus 19:28 28 Ye shall not make any cuttings in your flesh for the dead, nor print any marks upon you: I am the LORD.]

[I understand this to mean that my Heavenly Father designed me just as He has and that I am wonderfully and gloriously made.  I do not need tattoos, body piercings or plastic surgery to change what my God has done.  I will honor my Lord by preserving what He has done for me by His design.  Once, I understand this truth the whole word of God joins in harmony to support its truth.  I therefore stand in opposition to any tattoos, body piercings, or plastic surgeries regardless of their content, because nothing can improve upon what my God has done.] 

[I am not a Jew, therefore Jewish laws are not my laws.  But I am a Christian and the whole of the Bible teaches me about the nature and character of my God and teaches me how to walk with my Heavenly Father.] 

[So, what is The Lord’s Day about for me as a Christian?  I call it the Christian Sabbath because it is my day of renewal, rest, and restoration in my relationship with my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.  On this Day of the Lord I endeavor to Worship my Lord, Grow in my Lord, and Give to my Lord by giving to His people.  It is particularly the day that I remember the incredible sacrifices my Lord made for me, the victorious resurrection of my Lord, and the precious promises His resurrection and salvation secures for me.] 

2.      A Peculiar Day (vs 11; Mark 2.27) [- . . . wherefore the LORD blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it. – In choosing to honor God on the Lord’s Day I make it my dedicated purpose to make it a peculiar day for my Lord.  It shall forever be a holy day in my heart and life.  I take my Lord’s command concerning the Sabbath toward our Jewish brothers as my example of what I need to do toward my Lord on this sacred day.  I have chosen to make this day sacred because my Lord is worthy of at least that from me.  Therefore, I will do nothing typical of my worldly lost counterparts on The Lord’s Day.  As our Jewish forefathers were commanded to do no servile work, which was the typical work required to earn a living, on the Sabbath, I will likewise do nothing to make my Lord’s Day typical.] 

[Life is sacred – While I keep the Lord’s Day sacred and holy I will always honor the life my Lord has given on our Christian Sabbath.  I am always reminded of my Lord words, when He said,] 

[Mark 2:27 27 And he said unto them, The sabbath was made for man, and not man for the sabbath:]

[While I will refrain, as much as possible, likely to a bit of a fault, from doing chores and the like on Sunday (my Christian Sabbath) I will do what I must to secure and support life and restoration on my day of worship.]

[Supporting Commerce – However, I will discourage and seek not to support commerce on The Lord’s Day.  I like to watch sports from time to time.  I like an occasional football game, baseball game, NASCAR race, and other athletic events.  However, I oppose supporting their Sunday emphasis.  Folks, I believe that Americans have lost much by failing to recognize a day dedicated to the Lord Jesus Christ.  I think that Sunday commerce is about money and more money, and while prosperity is honored by our Lord, greed and covetousness is not.  I do not believe that the saying, Make all the money you can is a spiritually healthy truth.   God wants His people to prosper, but there are some things that are far more important than treasure, money, and stuff.  Spiritual prosperity is worth far more than mortal prosperity.]

[Therefore, I urge you my brothers and sisters in Christ, be sure to keep the Lord’s Day holy and focused on God.  Let it be peculiar to your resurrected Lord and Savior and it will be come a testimony of your love and dedication toward Christ to all who see that dedication in your life and practice.] 

3.      A Precious Day (Heb 10.25) [– Lastly, let us focus for a moment on the precious nature that the Lord’s Day ought to hold in your heart, minds and lives.  The New Testament declares,]  

[Hebrews 10:25 25 Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.]

[Let us never forsake the assembly of the Lord’s Day.  We need to feast upon the Word of the God.  We need the nourishment of our brothers and sisters in Christ.  We need the exhortation and edifications that our spiritual family alone can give us.  Make the Lord’s Day the Lord’s Day indeed by making it a day of,]

         [Personal Spiritual Growth – A day wherein the Church and is ministry are emphasized, as demonstrated in the New Testament.  The Church gathered and preached on Sunday (Acts 20).] 

         [Family Growth – Make it a point to spend time with your family on Sunday.  Your family is incredibly important to God.  Show your family how important they are to you on Sunday.] 

         [Physical Restoration and Growth – Let Sunday be peculiarly free of physical labor, as much as possible.] 


[1]Swanson, J. (1997). Dictionary of Biblical Languages with Semantic Domains : Hebrew (Old Testament) (electronic ed.) (DBLH 8701, #3). Oak Harbor: Logos Research Systems, Inc.


[3]Holladay, W. L., Köhler, L., & Köhler, L. (1971). A concise Hebrew and Aramaic lexicon of the Old Testament. (360). Leiden: Brill.

[4]Ibid. 242

[5] Grant R. Jeffrey, Apocalypse, (Colorado Springs, WaterBrook Press, 1992), 41-47.

[6] Liddell & Scott Greek-English Lexicon, 26th editon, Prepared by George Ricker Berry, (Chicago, Follett Publishing Company, 1958)


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