The Fourth Commandment

The Fourth Commandment instructs us to keep the Lord’s Day holy.  Notice it does not say to merely keep one hour holy.  Rather, the DAY is to be kept holy.

Our daughter and I were reading Martha Finley’s Elsie Dinsmore novels, written between 1867 and 1905.  Although fiction, they give a good picture of American life in the South, during the late 1800’s.   According to her books, people spent Sunday mornings in church. They rested in the early afternoon. In the late afternoon they returned to church and in the evenings at home they would sing psalms or hymns.

And get this!  They would not sing a song on Sunday that was not a Sunday song!  All Sunday singing had to be worshipful and pleasing to God.

Today many would call this lifestyle legalistic, even though they were simply following the Fourth Commandment.  How our society has drifted!  Can you remember as a child, when stores were closed on Sunday?  I can.

My point:  We have all failed in keeping the Ten Commandments—and I have only mentioned four. That is why we all need a Savior—and there is only ONE.

  •  Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy.    Exodus 20:8
  • All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.    Romans 3:12
  • For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.    Romans 6:23
  • SONG:  AT THE FEET OF JESUSLyrics by Liana W. Howarth; Music by Kathleen


[This life is temporary. This life is short.  When this life is over, our bodies will die and become empty shells, but our souls will continue to live forever.  Where will the “real you” live?  Will you live for all eternity separated from God?  Or will you spend eternity in the presence of God in heaven?   Learn more so you can make your most important decision:  and

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About Kathleen

God delights in working through His people as they submit to Him. Jesus said to go into all the world and preach the good news to everyone (Mark 16:15). No matter where we live on this planet, people are separated from God because of sin. We ALL need a Savior, and there’s only ONE. It brings me great joy to share Christ with the lost and lonely. Over the years I’ve learned a great deal while facilitating Bible studies. I’ve found myself on college and university campuses, the beach, the streets, the hospital, the jail and the juvenile facility for incarcerated teens sharing God’s message of love. I also serve as an online missionary with Global Media Outreach. I’ve seen countless lives transformed when people turn away from sin and turn to Jesus. The changes God makes are real and lasting. These are some of my experiences. NOTE: My stories have been altered, removing any and all identifying factors. This includes names and other particulars in order to protect confidentiality and anonymity.
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7 Responses to The Fourth Commandment

  1. Kristi says:

    Thank you for an interesting post! I learned a few things!

  2. JoAnne Cole says:

    Having lived in the south for a while now, I see that which you describe, still here. Most local shops are closed on Sundays…and there is a small vestige of a tradition that I still see. One of our hardware stores, still in original building over 100 years old, closes mid-day Wednesday. I looked up as to why, and there are many theories, but one is Wednesday was a night for church and prayer meetings too, and years ago a big dinner around 5:30 preceded the evening service. Folks needed time to cook and get ready for church.

  3. David Madsen says:

    Hi Kathleen, yes I remember those days in the afternoon we would actually go for a ride and sing Christian hymns,we have come along way In the wrong direction and to tell theChurch or pastors that we’ve drifted from the fourth commandment they would be shocked at me thank you for your post it is a good reminder of the direction we should go miss,you David

    • Kathleen says:

      I’m sure you are grateful for your Christian upbringing, David! You were blessed to have such parents! Thank you for sharing!

  4. Linda Simson says:

    Just recently I ordered the complete 12 volume set of Elsie Dinsmore books. Hard copies. The stories are inspiring as the gospel is so central to her life, and the desire to love and obey Jesus so convicting. I am looking forward to sharing these books with my grandchildren. Even though we are not under the law, but under grace, love for our precious Jesus should compel us to live holy lives; set apart to bring Him glory. In our world today self sacrifice is rare instead of the norm, especially as the end of the church age draws nearer. Oh, may I be found faithful to the end.

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