Discussion Questions on Exodus 20:8-11; 31:12-16
Some of you or some in your Bible class may or may not remember the Blue Laws that once prevailed in many towns in the United States and elsewhere. Blue Laws were: “Laws prohibiting certain activities, such as shopping, on a Sunday.” In my small town, only essential services and shops were open on Sunday; for example, the pharmacies took turns being open (only one each Sunday) as well as gasoline service stations (only one each Sunday). No retail businesses were open, but all of the restaurants were open. In my town, the Blue Laws were voluntary. Later, a shopping center came to our town and the shops were open seven days a week; whereas, the downtown shops continued to adhere to the Blue Laws. Many of the downtown shops were “Mom and Pop” shops, which enabled the owners to have one day a week off from work. Most owners worked Monday through Saturday from 8:00 am to 6:00 pm, and Sunday was a welcome day for worship and rest (and yes, even yard work).
What do you think about the benefits of Blue Laws, knowing that they will never be enacted nationwide? Can you think of any businesses that abide by a Blue Law? Why do they do so? How “successful” are they? How does their abiding by a Blue Law benefit their employees and their families? Would you recommend that a shop owner abide by a Blue Law? If so, why or why not?