JESUS! In Word and Song



“The Sabbath in Christ’s time was a veil upon the eyes of the people. It prevented them beholding any duty on that day further than the offering of the set form of sacrifice. But Jesus Christ came to show them of the Father.”1

And, it was to show them that He and the FATHER were One! The Messiah is divine—GOD Himself come down to man. As GOD of the Old Testament commanded a Sabbath (a one-day rest from the rigors of the world), so does GOD’s Son in the New.

“Jesus does not argue with His opponents about whether they understand the Sabbath legislation correctly. His interest is whether they understand who He is.”2

The debate between the Jewish religious leaders and JESUS about the Sabbath came to a head when the leaders realized He was making Himself out to be GOD.  “[T]he Jews never accused our Lord of blasphemy for saying that he was the Messiah, but for saying that He was the Son of God, because they did not believe that Messiah when He appeared was to be a Divine Person.”3

“This is why the Jews were seeking all the more to kill him, because not only was he breaking the Sabbath, but he was even calling God his own Father, making himself equal with God” (John 5:18 ESV).

This verse begins a long discourse, in which our Lord formally defends himself from the charge of the Jews of laying claim to what He had no right to claim. (1.) He asserts His own Divine authority, commission, dignity, and equality with God His Father. (2.) He brings forward the evidence of His Divine commission, which the Jews ought to consider and receive. (3.) Finally, He tells the Jews plainly the reason of their unbelief, and charges home on their consciences their love of man’s praise more than God’s, and their inconsistency in pretending to honour Moses while they did not honour Christ. It is a discourse almost unrivalled in depth and majesty.4

And, does it not hang heavy on our consciences that we take GOD so lightly that we begrudge the command to think upon Him one day of each week?  

Is it going too far to say, that if our nation repented of its sin and returned to the old path of Sabbath observance, we would again become the leading nation of the world? But though the nation does not return, let us as individuals, and as a church, put this promise to the test and we shall find the Lord faithful.5  

“’If you turn back from doing your pleasure on my holy day, and call the Sabbath a delight, not seeking your own pleasure, then I will make you ride on the heights of the earth; for the mouth of the LORD has spoken’” (Isa 58:13-14 ESV).

To purchase song book
see BOOK in main menu


(16) The Jews Observed the Sabbath

            1. Charles Ellicott, “Commentary on Mark 2:27,” 1905, Ellicott’s Commentary for English Readers, 10 February 2021

            2. R.C. Sproul, ed., The Reformation Study Bible (Orlando, FL: Ligonier Ministries, 2005) 1518.

            3. J.C. Ryle, Expository Thoughts on the Gospels (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Book House, 2007) III:282.

            4. Ryle.

            5. C.E. Hunter, “Keeping the Lord’s Day Holy,” Chapel Library, February 10, 2021

            6. Philip Schaff, “Commentary on Mark 2:27,” 1879-90, Schaff’s Popular Commentary on the NT, 10 February 2021

            7. Charles Wesley, and John Darwall, “Rejoice the Lord is King,” 1744, Hymnary, 10 February 2021

            8. John 5:19-47.

            9. Matt 12:3-4.

            10. Matt 12:11.

            11. Albert Barnes, “Commentary on Isaiah 58:13,” 1870 Barnes’ Notes on the Whole Bible, 10 February 2021

            12. D. Lloyd, “Commentary on Ezekiel 20:12,” 1905-09, The Biblical Illustrator, 10 February 2021

            13. ESV Study Bible, English Standard Version (Wheaton, IL: Crossway, 2001, ESV Text Edition: 2011) 1342.

            14. Sinclair Ferguson, “Sabbath Rest,” 1 March 2004, Ligonier Ministries, 10 February 2021

            15. Alistair Begg, “The Gift of the Sabbath,” 18 July 1999, Truth for Life, The Bible-Teaching Ministry of Alistair Begg, 10 February 2021

JESUS! In Word and Song



“Happy New Year! The Christian year begins with the season of Advent.”1 “Advent anticipates the ‘coming of Christ’ from three different perspectives: the physical nativity in Bethlehem, the reception of Christ in the heart of the believer, and the eschatological Second Coming.”2

“Behold, the days are coming, declares the LORD, when I will fulfill the promise I made to the house of Israel and the house of Judah. In those days and at that time I will cause a righteous Branch to spring up for David, and he shall execute justice and righteousness in the land” (Jer 33:14 ESV).

The Christian story is essentially one of daring hope, and we proclaim it boldly during Advent. All our senses tell us that God is not here, that the world is encompassed in darkness, cold, and pain. Yet we proclaim during this darkest, coldest time that He is here, tangibly born in the flesh, present with us still today.3

If you read the Bible cover to cover, you will discover there is a lot of waiting done by God’s people. Even though God made them wait, He didn’t allow them to wait without hope. He made covenants, anointings, and promises with his people while they waited, which gave them hope.4

“Hope, in the Bible, exists as a secure assurance, a trust placed in a trustworthy God. God has not failed us in the past, and therefore, if he claims he will do something in the future, we can have a hope that he will fulfill that claim.”5

“We aren’t alone in hope for an improved political climate. The Jewish people living more than two thousand years ago were hoping for the arrival of the Messiah to rescue them and bring about a just and peaceful kingdom.”6

Revelations initial recipients were living in two overlapping realities: their assurance in the sovereign reign and glorious return of Christ; and their earthly, everyday experience of waiting and suffering. Some two thousand years later, we still live amid these overlapping realities. Here, between Christ’s first coming and his glorious return, our lives may also feel like a mix of kingdom and confidence alongside waiting and suffering.7

“In this day and age, where evil abounds and all seems lost, we can also hope that the prophecies about Jesus’ second arrival to earth will also be fulfilled.”8

“[W]ait for the revealing of our Lord Jesus Christ, who will sustain you to the end, guiltless in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Cor 1:7-8 ESV).

To purchase song book
See BOOK in the main menu bar


(1) In Hope Assured

            1. “Hope is a Verb: Salt’s Lectionary Commentary for Advent Week One,” 27 November 2018, Salt, 9 March 2021

            2. “Advent,” Wikipedia, Wikipedia, 9 March 2021

            3. Catherine McNiel, “Advent Week One: A Hope Made Sure,” 2 December 2019, Awana, 9 March 2021

            4. Dori, “Advent Week 1 Hope: Family Devotional,” 1 December 2018, This Full Life 5, 9 March 2021

            5. Hope Bolinger, “What is the Candle of Hope for Advent? Week 1,” 6 December 2019, Christianity, 9 March 2021

            6. Matt Tullos, “Advent Devotional (Week 1): Faith,” 25 November 2015, Lifeway, 9 March 2021

            7. Kelli B. Trujillo, “Advent Week 1: He Will Come Again in Glory,” 29 November 2020, Christianity Today, 9 March 2021

            8. Hope Bolinger, “What is the Candle of Hope for Advent? Week 1,” 6 December 2019,, 9 March 2021

            9. Robb Redman, “What is Advent?” 17 December 2020, Worship Leader, 9 March 2021

            10. “. . . Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees”  (Romans 8:24 ESV)?

            11. Justin Holcomb, “What is Advent?” 6 November 2020, 9 March 2021

            12. Holcomb.

            13. Arthur S. Way, Letters of Paul, Hebrews and the Book of Psalms (Grand Rapids, MI: Kregel Publications, 1926, 1981) 208.

            14. “Be on guard, keep awake. For you do not know when the time will come” (Mark 13:33 ESV).

            15. Mark 13:33.

            16. Charles Wesley and Henry T. Smart, “Jesus Comes with Clouds Descending,” 1758, Hymnary, 9 March 2021

            17. Wesley and Smart.