Links I Like

Links I Like is a collection of blogs, articles and books I’ve come across recently and thought they were worth sharing. Click here for past Links I Like.

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Carl Lafterton on 6 ways to look godly without really growing.

This time last year, I mentioned six ways to look godly while not growing in your faith — and then spent 2013 battling them, falling for them, and finding several other ways, too. So here, for 2014, are six more ways to look great while doing little…

Kevin DeYoung on The 10 commandments of twitter.

And the Lord of Twitter spoke all these words saying, I am the Lord your God, who gave thee computers and tablets and smartphones, the Holy One of all social media who foreknew the internet before the foundation of the earth, yea even when the world of handles and hashtags was without form and void.

5 ways to fight entitlement in your kids.

On the one hand, you want to provide your child with every advantage. On the other hand, sometimes it feels like when you do that, you’re feeding an incredibly unhealthy characteristic in our culture.

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Rest

The 10 commandments have been fascinating me today as I’m reading through Deuteronomy. Here’s my other post on them.

I think it’s interesting that in the 10 commandments, God spends more time on the sabbath command than any of the other ones. Sabbath gets 4 verses, the others get one each.

Why?

I think for a few reasons, it is the hardest one to keep. It is the one that takes the most faith because it requires us to give up control. When we sleep, when we rest, we stop doing things. The things we stop doing are often the things we find our identity from. We stop working, which at least for me, is easy to get my identity from. After all, I get paid for my job. I do it for most of my week. People know me as a pastor. It is easy for this to be my identity. I also need to work to provide for my family so we have money to live, so it is important to say the least.

But what do you do on Sabbath? Are you allowed to do anything?

Deuteronomy tells us to keep the Sabbath holy. The word holy means different, set apart. This means our Sabbath should be different from our other days. Have a different pace, a different rhythm. A different goal because “we are to keep it holy to the Lord.” If the goal of work is to make money, provide. The goal of Sabbath is not that. Sabbath is to be slower, more enjoyable, a stopping of those other things that we do the other 6 days.

Sabbath might mean playing with your kids, taking a nap, watching a movie, reading, taking a run, eating a slow, long meal with friends.

It is to be restful, recharging, different.

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10 Commandments as a Response

Right now, Katie and I are reading through the Bible in 90 days and today I’m starting Deuteronomy. I’m a little behind so I should’ve started Deuteronomy yesterday, but I’ll make up for it.

In Deuteronomy 5, the 10 commandments are given again. One of the things I appreciate about Deuteronomy is that it is a recap of sorts of Exodus, Leviticus and Numbers.

For many, the 10 commandments are seen as what makes a good person. Many Americans believe if you follow the 10 commandments, you’ll go to heaven. They are a standard many set for themselves.

In reality, the 10 commandments are God’s design for how his followers, specifically in the nation of Israel in Exodus and Deuteromony will live with other and with God. As slaves in Egypt in the book of Exodus, they were told how to live, when to eat, when to rest. They didn’t know how to do this on their own. God gives them guidelines on how to do this.

Many think the 10 commandments are more slavery, in fact, the nation of Israel falls into sin so often they seem to think God was trying to bring them back into bondage and that they knew better. This plays out a lot in our lives as well. Every time we take matters into our own hands, go our way, it usually leads to disaster because it starts with what we want instead of what God wants.

Here’s the thing in Deuteronomy though, it starts in vs. 6 of chapter 5, and before saying what the commandments are, God reminds them of who he is, who they were, what he has done to rescue them. The 10 commandments are to be a response of gratitude, humility and worship for their redemption. Not more slavery.

I think this provides a great lens for following Jesus. The commands in scripture are found in the context of: this is who God is, this is who you were before being rescued, this is who you are now that you are rescued, now respond by obeying the one who rescued you.

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