Sabbath Day

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Russell M. Nelson

Here's another spiritual yardstick: How do you feel about the Sabbath day? I'll share some of my personal reflections with you. When I was your age, I wondered just what activities were appropriate for the Sabbath. I read lists of do's and don'ts, all compiled by others.

But now I have a much better understanding, which I gained from two Old Testament scriptures. One is from the book of Exodus:

The Lord spake unto Moses, saying,

... 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. [Exodus 31:12-13]

A similar message is in the book of Ezekiel:

I gave them my sabbaths, to be a sign between me and them, that
they might know that I am the Lord that sanctify them....
I am the Lord your God;... hallow my sabbaths; and they shall be a sign between me and you, that ye may know that I am the Lord your God. [Ezekiel 20:12, 19-20]

Pondering these scriptures has helped me to understand. My behavior on the Sabbath constitutes my sign to the Lord of my regard for him and for my covenants with him. If, on the one hand, my interests on the Sabbath day are turned to activities such as pro-football games or worldly movies, the sign from me to him would clearly be that my devotions do not favor him. If, on the other hand, my Sabbath interests are focused on the Lord and his teachings, on the family, or on folks who are sick or poor or needy, that sign would likewise be evident to God. I have concluded that our activities on the Sabbath will be appropriate when we honestly consider them to be our personal sign of our commitment to the Lord.

Russell M. Nelson, of the Council of the Twelve Apostles, shares his insights about the Sabbath Day at a BYU Devotional held January 7, 1990