THE SABBATH IS CENTRAL: For many of us, Sunday is more than just a day to go to church and to rest. It's like our internal clock that regulates our week. When Sunday is different because we missed church or something else came up, it affects the entire next week because we never had our 'reset.' These past few weeks that church has been shutdown because of the quarantine has made that evident. I'm glad we can still worship God using our website, but it's not the same at all, and missing out on gathering with God's saints on the Sabbath Day has an effect on the other six days, doesn't it.
The Jewish people realized, perhaps more acutely than we do, that the Sabbath Day is more than just a day of rest, and more than just the stable rock by which we build our calendars. True Sabbath - perfect peace rest in God's providence (also known as shalom) - is what we as sinful people are missing out on, and it is what the Old Testament says will be returned when the Lord comes back (called Yom YHWH = The Day of the LORD in the OT).
This background helps put Jesus' massively important claim in perspective:
For the Son of Man is Lord of the Sabbath (v8).
THE FOOT BONE'S CONNECTED TO THE ANKLE BONE... When you read an Old Testament citation in the New Testament, like what Matthew does by quoting Isaiah 42:1-4 in v18-21, the author means to convey far more than just the few words that he wrote out, he's packing in the entire context of that OT passage. Like our bones, the Bible is totally interconnected. In this time of uncertainty, take the time to read all of Isaiah 42, because it's setting up some incredible assurance you need to hear in the first three verses of Isaiah 43. This is the promise that Jesus, Lord of the Sabbath, came to fulfill for you.
ACKNOWLEDGE WHO GOD IS: God's Kingdom has come upon us (v28)
ALIGN YOUR LIFE WITH GOD'S WILL: Whoever is not with Jesus is against Him, and whoever does not gather with me scatters (v30). Pray that your life is aligned with Jesus' mission.
ASK GOD FOR WHAT YOU NEED and thank God that last week we could celebrate the sign of Jonah being fulfilled in Christ's resurrection! (v40-41)