Trivium Pursuit

Sabbatarian

As a first generation Christian and father of two young children, I am trying to figure out how the Sabbath should look in my family. I read your Sabbath Syllogism, and I would love to know what a Sunday looks like in your home now and when your children were young. I am truly just trying to figure this out so that I can train my children. James, Canyon Country, CA

Some persons invent special rules for “resting” on what they consider to be the “sabbath” day. We might call them Pro-Sabbatarians.

Other persons throw all caution to the wind and abandon the notion of setting apart specific time for “resting” in God. We might call them Anti-Sabbatarians.

Contrary to the Pro-Sabbatarian, we should not be concerned about a specific day. Contrary to the Anti-Sabbatarian, we should be concerned about how we spend our time. We are no longer held accountable to following elementary school level rules about how we spend a 24-hour period, but we are held accountable to living out mature principles about how we spend 24-7, including what time we specifically set apart for God (which, conceivably, may sometimes involve setting apart a day). Our liberty under the Gospel is not a license to childishly please ourselves but a flexibility to act maturely in good conscience in order to please the Lord.

The Lord commands us to make the best use of our time — to redeem or buy back the time for right uses.

Colossians 4:5 Walk in wisdom toward those who are outside, redeeming the time.

Ephesians 5:15-17 See then that you walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise, 16 redeeming the time, because the days are evil. 17 Therefore do not be unwise, but understand what the will of the Lord is.

I believe the same regarding tithing — we should not be concerned about a specific amount -10%, but we should be concerned about how we spend our wealth — who what where when and why.

Persons who waste their time (and money) on religious exercises are no better — maybe a little worse — than persons who waste their time (and money) indulging their lust for entertainment. (Indeed, many indulge their lust for entertainment in the form of what they choose to consider religious exercises!)

You are the best judge of whether you are spending your time profitably. Consider what your goals should be, and what use of your time and resources would serve those goals well. This will change over time, as you mature and your children grow up. It is my opinion that a regular time of family Bible study and prayer — at least daily — is one good use of time and serves well what goals we should have for our families.

Harvey

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