From the Word: 1 And the Lord said to me, “Go again, love a woman loved by a husband, and an adulteress, even as the Lord loves the children of Israel, though they turn to other gods, and love cakes of raisins.” 2 So I bought her for fifteen pieces of silver, and a homer of barley, and a half-homer of barley. 3 And I said to her, “You will abide as mine for many days; you will not act unfaithfully, and you will not be any man’s wife. So will I also be toward you." 4 For the children of Israel will abide many days without king, and without prince, and without sacrifice, and without pillar, and without ephod or household idols. 5 Afterward the children of Israel will return and seek the Lord their God, and David their king, and will come with fear to the Lord and to his goodness in the latter days. (Hosea 3:1–5)
From the Confessions: The Large Catechism, The Ten Commandments
The Third Commandment
Take note, therefore, that the force and the power of this commandment do not lie not in the resting, but in the sanctifying, so that a specific holy exercise belongs to this day. Other works and occupations are not properly called holy exercises, unless the person is first holy. But here something is to be done by which the person is made holy. This is accomplished, as we have heard, by the agency of God’s Word alone. Fixed places, times, people, and the entire external order of worship are appointed and designed so that God’s Word may operate publicly.
Pulling It Together: What do you have to do in order to become holy? Nothing but follow him who makes one holy. We are called to follow him so we may be present for his great blessings. We are not called to be a fickle Gomer, but to renew our love for God each Lord’s Day. That renewal is simply presence; God does all the rest through his Word. Sanctify the Lord’s Day to yourself, and see how he is sanctifying you through the power of his Word. Through worship, God acts upon us, calling us to faith in Christ Jesus. This is the intended effect of the Third Commandment in these latter days.
Prayer: Give me such faith, O Lord, that I may abide with you always. Amen.
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