The winter day was cold, and even though it was freezing outside, a crowd was gathering. You could feel the anticipation in the air. A young man named Louis was standing in the crowd. He was so excited that he could hardly contain himself. He thought that he just might witness history in the making.
The newspapers had been speculating about the event. They questioned whether a man could really go that fast on land and survive. They wondered if the vehicle could really go that fast without falling to pieces. Everybody seemed to have an opinion; engineers, scientists, doctors, and the man in the street. Today was the day that the questions would all be answered. Louis was excited that he was going to see it.
A gasp rose from the crowd when the machine was introduced. Louis had never seen such an incredible machine. It looked like it was from the future. With admiration mixed with fear, he watched the driver, get into the machine. Louis felt the ground shake when the engine in the machine roared to life. He couldn’t believe what he was witnessing. Soon the machine took off accelerating to an unbelievable speed. Louis and everyone else who was watching were amazed by how fast the machine went.
The machine, back in 1898, had just reached the speed of 39 miles an hour. Wow! That doesn’t seem very impressive today. If somebody ahead of us on the highway is creeping along at 39 miles per hour, well, we’re ready to pitch a fit and just scream, “Let’s go, come on! I don’t have all day.”
But back in 1898, the world was amazed when somebody went 39 miles per hour. Can you imagine what Louis and everyone else who witnessed a car reach the unheard of speed of 39 miles per hour would think of the latest record for land speed, set by a jet-powered car screamed across the Black Rock Desert in Nevada at more than 763 miles per hour. And of course, it’s only a matter of time before someone will break that record.
Even though we’re moving at speeds our ancestors would have thought were miraculous, even supernatural, most people still complain about the same thing. No matter what we do or how fast we do it, the complaint is always the same. We just don’t have enough time.
Let’s go back to the very beginning, right after God created the world. The Bible says in Genesis 2:1-3, “Thus the heavens and the earth, and all the host of them, were finished. And on the seventh day God ended His work which He had done, and He rested on the seventh day from all His work which he had done. Then God blessed the seventh day and sanctified it, because in it He rested from all His work which God had created and made.”
Notice the similarity found in the fourth commandment; Exodus 20:8-11, “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord your God. In it you shall do not work: you, nor your son, nor your daughter, nor your male servant, nor your female servant, nor your cattle, nor your stranger who is within your gates. For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and hallowed it.”
Here’s what I want you to really think about. There’s a reason for the fourth commandment. If you study the other nine, you quickly discover that they’re all really good for us, and the same thing is true with number four. This commandment is a critical answer to the tyranny of time. No matter how fast we move, no matter how much faster our computers go, no matter how much faster our cells phones can connect us to the world, no matter how much faster we can eat our meals, we just never seem to have enough time. But then you open the Bible to the Ten Commandments and you find God asking us to rest.