“Papa, tell us the story of KeepThisTossThat,” chorused the little devils..
KeepThisTossThat was a little cherub who got bored working one bright day. He was a smart little imp, mind whirl-a-gigging. Rather than carry God’s Commandments around his fun little island. he parceled the Commandments to his new delightfully mischievous friends, instructing them to pick and choose which Commandment to keep, which to toss. These new friends had his ear, and they sounded so wise, he totally trusted them. Especially the little imp who cooed he was working too hard.
"Toss all things that keep anyone from enjoying 'Doing Whatever I Want Island . . .'”
Exodus 20 KJV And God spake all these words, saying,
2 I am the Lord thy God, which have brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage.
PinchMePokeMe was dancing in his head. He didn’t have the time but he had the answer. "This is much too burdensome. God knows Who He is and so do we. Don’t need nagging reminders.”
3 Thou shalt have no other gods before me.
FaithAttacker: “Well, there goes free thought. Sounds like freedom from religion – vote it off.”
4 Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth.
BarkBite grumbled “There goes creativity. Humbug. Does this vote artists off the island?”
5 Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the Lord thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me;
6 And shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments.
NailsOnBlackboard weighed in: “Heavy. God plays favorites, loving those who love Him and hating those who hate Him?”
7 Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain; for the Lord will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain.
SmirkSnicker: “Be serious! Everyone does this, it’s human nature, goldarn it.”
8 Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy.
9 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:
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.
YayMe cried “Easy one! Eliminate this and vote in Sunday. What’s the diff? You can keep all days – He won’t mind.”
12 Honour thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee.
NoseThumber caroled “What a hoot. Don’t they already force us to do that?”
13 Thou shalt not kill.
SighingPlenty muttered “Life’s unpleasant – let’s keep this one, vote it in."
14 Thou shalt not commit adultery.
FussAndFeathers twitted “Adultery against who? What, me worry?”
15 Thou shalt not steal.
GrabAndTake sighed: “Rules and regulations – but do keep your hands off MY stuff."
16 Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour.
Gossipmonger – “this is my area. Vote it off."
17 Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's wife, “nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor any thing that is thy neighbour's.
CausingUproar thundered “We should vote this one off! Without coveting, we wouldn’t have all the delicious sins.”
KeepThisTossThat, after the noise settled, ventured timidly “Coveting leads to bearing false witness, stealing, adultery, sometimes murder. I say toss out the first four – they are for pleasing God – we can do that, automatically. No need to carry these heavy banners.”
Jesus, having witnessed this bit of foolery, took all the banners and found new cherubs to hold them strong and steady. “I have come to fulfill the Law, not do away with it. You love Me? Keep My Commandments.”
KeepThisTossThat, with all his new friends were voted off the Island, now renamed the ‘Isle of Man under God.”
“And the moral of the story . . .”
“We know Papa – make sure Jesus doesn’t hear us.”
For more details on this topic, see Biblical Sabbath.
Sabbath (as the verb shavath) is first mentioned in the Genesis creation narrative, where the seventh day is set aside as a day of rest and made holy by God (Genesis 2:2–3). Observation and remembrance of Sabbath is one of the Ten Commandments (the fourth in the original Jewish, the Eastern Orthodox, and most Protestant traditions, the third in Roman Catholic and Lutheran traditions). Most people who observe the Sabbath regard it as having been instituted as a perpetual covenant for the Israelites (Exodus 31:13–17), as a sign respecting two events: the day during which God rested after having completed Creation in six days (Exodus 20:8–11), and the Israelites' deliverance from Egypt (Deuteronomy 5:12–15). Originally, Sabbath-breakers were officially to be cut off from the assembly or potentially killed (Exodus 31:15). Observance in the Hebrew Bible was universally from sixth-day sundown to seventh-day sundown (Nehemiah 13:19, cf. Leviticus 23:32) on a seven-day week.
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