From the Word: But why do you call me, Lord, Lord, and not do what I say? (Luke 6:46)
From the Confessions: The Large Catechism, The Ten Commandments
The Third Commandment
This commandment is disobeyed not only by those who grossly abuse and desecrate the holy day because of their greed or frivolity, neglecting to hear God’s Word or lying in taverns, dead drunk as swine. It is also broken by another crowd who listen to God’s Word as if it were any other trifle, only coming to preaching out of habit, then going their way, and at the end of the year knowing as little of the Word as at the beginning.
Pulling It Together: “There’s the rub!” as Shakespeare had Hamlet say. What is the origin of this famous saying? Believe it or not; it comes from bowling. To be precise, it originates in lawn bowling. A “rub” is anything in the grass that impedes or alters the progress of the ball as it rolls toward its target. Shakespeare might have had Jesus say, Why don’t you do as I say? There’s the rub!
Now, in terms of the Third Commandment, there are many rubs. The goal of the commandment is communion with God and his people through hearing the Word proclaimed. A rub is anything that gets in the way of that — from sporting events to sleeping in to working to any of the lame excuses we hear people make, and that we also sometimes make. A Third Commandment rub can even be showing up for church, but failing to listen to Jesus who is Lord of the Sabbath (Luke 6:5). You would have completely missed the point of being there.
Prayer: Help me, Holy Spirit, to hear your Word so that you make my life an orchard. Amen.
Receive these Sola Devotions in weekday emails. Click here to fill out a quick and secure subscription form.
One For All is a nine-session Bible study explores the center of the Christian faith by focusing on the unique and exclusive promise of Jesus. It examines not only the claims that Christ made about himself in Scripture, but the claim that the Lord makes on our lives as well. By focusing on the Gospel message of salvation in Christ alone, the study seeks to show how God makes us a part of His mission to the whole world, and how "the love of Christ urges us on, because we are convinced that one has died for all."