The Biblical Sabbath: Part 1

Genesis 1 shows that the universe was created and later all the work of preparing the earth for humanity, from the time that the earth was covered with water, was completed in six days.

Genesis 2:1 Thus the heavens and the earth were finished, and all the host of them.

The Creator then rested from his activity of preparing the earth for man and making man; and sanctified [Set Apart] the seventh day for man to also rest from his physical activities and join with his Creator in learning of his ways.

Here we see that the seventh day Sabbath was a memorial that God created all things; and a time for Adam and all humanity to rest and take time out from physical activities to spend that time with God.

The Sabbath had nothing to do with being Jewish and was made for Adam the father of all humanity and for ALL of his descendants!

2:2 And on the seventh day God ended his work which he had made; and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had made. 2:3 And God blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it [Set it Apart from other days]: because that in it he had rested from all his work which God created and made.

The Creator then rested from his activity of preparing the earth for man and making man; and sanctified the seventh day for man to also rest from his physical activities and join with his Creator in learning of his ways. 

It was the Creator of mankind who made the Sabbath that he might have a Set Aside Time to be with and teach his creation, Adam and Eve and all of their descendants.  The seventh day was sanctified [made holy] and was to be a time set aside for man to rest from physical activities and learn of God in the presence of man’s Creator. 

Since Adam was  the father of all humanity and Judah did not even exist for about two thousand years after creation; the seventh day Sabbath was created by the Creator for ALL of Adam’s descendants!  For all of humanity!

This six days of physical creation followed by a weekly seventh day Sabbath is a memorial of the physical creation and the awesome power and greatness of the Creator God.  It is also a day to set aside physical pursuits to come to and learn the ways of God and which bring peace and eternal life.

No man has any authority to change this perpetual seven day cycle of remembrance  of Almighty God acknowledging Him as the Creator who created humanity.

2:2 And on the seventh day God ended his work which he had made; and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had made. 2:3 And God blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it [Set it Apart for Holy Use]: because that in it he had rested from all his work which God created and made.

Thus was the history of creation explained by God to Moses: 

First the creation of the universe  Genesis 1:1; followed by God [the two members of the God (Elohim:  “Mighty Ones”) family] coming to a water covered earth and then preparing the earth and creating living creatures and the placing of physical plants, animals and man upon it; and finally the creation of the seventh day Sabbath, a day of rest from all physical work; dedicated to assembling with God and learning of God and the way to life eternal.

Then the very Creator of all things, the one who gave up his God-hood to become flesh, Jesus Christ [Hebrew: Yeshua Messiah]; also created the seventh day Sabbath!  Therefore he could rightly claim that he was the Lord of the Sabbath! 

Matthew 12:8    For the Son of man is Lord even of the sabbath day.

Jesus Christ on that occasion reminded us that the seventh day Sabbath was created for all mankind!  The seventh day Sabbath was created for Adam and Eve and ALL of their descendants at the first week of creation!  The seventh day Sabbath was NOT made two thousand years after the creation, just for the Jews!

In saying that: Mark 2:27 And he said unto them, The sabbath was made for man, and not man for the Sabbath:  Jesus revealed that the Sabbath was made for all men at the Creation!

Which day is God’s Holy Sabbath Day? 

Why the very seventh day of crreation the Creator made the Sabbath by the majesty of his authority:  The seventh day of the week which is sunset Friday to sunset Saturday!  How do we know this?  Because in the flesh Jesus Christ the very Creator of the weekly Sabbath kept the seventh day Sabbath from Friday sunset to Saturday sunset, the same as the Jews of his day!

How do we know that the biblical days run from sunset to sunset?  Go to Genesis one and you will see that every day of the creation week is described as beginning and ending in the evening and includes the evening and the morning. 

Some professing Christians actually reject the seventh day Sabbath that Jesus Christ created and himself kept, thinking that they honor Christ by disobeying him and observing the first day of the week, Sunday; instead of the day that Christ created and commanded his people to observe.  This is rebellion against Jesus Christ.

What do the prophets say? 

In the millennium when Jesus Christ rules the earth as King of kings; he will require ALL humanity to keep HIS seventh day, the Friday sunset to Saturday sunset Holy Biblical Sabbath Day. 

Isaiah 66:23  And it shall come to pass, that from one new moon to another, and from one sabbath to another, shall all flesh come to worship before me, saith the Lord.

The very Implementing Creator [under the Executive Creator, God the Father] of the universe and of humanity, also created the weekly Sabbath for Adam and Eve and ALL their descendants, ALL of humanity!

The Creator commanded all humanity to rest from their labors and spend the seventh day Sabbath, from Friday Sunset to Saturday sunset; with God learning to live by every Word of God.

The seventh day Sabbath is a gift of love to all humanity so that we might have rest from our labors and time to commune with God, and to learn of God and the way to life eternal in peace and harmony with God and each other.

As the Implementing Creator of the entire universe; this Being of incredible power and glory who made man and all things, set aside the weekly seventh day Sabbath for man; and most men today reject this incredible opportunity to learn the habit of obeying the Creator and the way to eternal life.

The Sabbath was instituted by our Creator on the seventh day after the completion of six days of physical creative activity. (Gen 2:2-3). The Sabbath was made for man (Mark 2:27) so that man could follow the example of his Creator and rest from his labors. It is not reasonable to think that God should need to rest, therefore he rested as an example for us that we should rest from our physical activities to spend time on learning the spiritual things of God.

Thus was the history of creation explained by Moses: First the creation of the universe in Genesis 1:1, followed by God coming to a water covered earth and then preparing the earth; and then creating living creatures and placing physical plants, animals and man upon it, in the subsequent verses.

2:4 These are the generations of the heavens and of the earth when they were created, in the day that the LORD God made the earth and the heavens, 2:5 And every plant of the field before it was in the earth, and every herb of the field before it grew:

Then God watered the earth by means of evaporation and then condensing dew, and there was no rain with its rainbow until the days of Noah.

for the LORD God had not caused it to rain upon the earth, and there was not a man to till the ground. 2:6 But there went up a mist from the earth, and watered the whole face of the ground.  

Quickly after creation the woman and the man sinned and cut themselves off from God by refusing to obey God.  From that time forward only a tiny few were faithful to live by the Word of God, until in bondage as slaves in Egypt the children of Jacob also forgot God’s Holy Sabbath Day.  

Then God delivered physical Israel from bondage in Egypt and at Mount Sinai reminded the people to REMEMBER God’s Holy Sabbath Day. 

The word “remember” implies restoring something that once was and has been forgotten or fallen into disuse. 

The weekly Sabbath day was not given to Israel as some new thing, rather they were reminded of something that already existed and had been forgotten during the time of seven day a week slavery in Egypt;  they were being REMINDED that God had created the Sabbath Day for all of humanity from the very beginning!

Exodus 20:8 Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy. 20:9 Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work: 20:10 But the seventh day is the sabbath of the LORD thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that [anyone that you are responsible for] is within thy gates: 20:11 For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the LORD blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it. 

  1. God’s Holy Sabbath Day was Set Apart from all other days at creation, 
  2. The weekly Sabbath Day is the seventh day of a weekly seven day cycle,
  3. The weekly Sabbath is from sunset Friday evening to sunset Saturday evening
  4. The weekly Sabbath day was made for Eve and Adam and ALL of their descendants; All of humanity, 
  5. When  Jesus Christ comes he will require all humanity to observe the weekly Friday sunset to Saturday sunset Sabbath,
  6. The Weekly Sabbath day is one of the Ten Commandments, and must be obeyed forever.

Deuteronomy 4:39 Know therefore this day, and consider it in thine heart, that the Lord he is God in heaven above, and upon the earth beneath: there is none else.  4:40 Thou shalt keep therefore his statutes, and his commandments, which I command thee this day, that it may go well with thee, and with thy children after thee, and that thou mayest prolong thy days upon the earth, which the Lord thy God giveth thee, for ever.

A New Covenant will be extended to all Israel; and to all nations as they are grafted into spiritual Israel. All people shall be repentant and spiritually circumcised; with the whole word of God written on their hearts through the indwelling of God’s Holy Spirit.

A major part of the New Covenant is the gift of the Holy Spirit to enable an understanding and empower people to live by every Word of God.

All nations and people will be grafted into a Spiritual Israel of a New Covenant, just as they could be grafted into Physical Israel!

Jeremiah 31:31 Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel, and with the house of Judah: 31:32 Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt; which my covenant they brake, although I was an husband unto them, saith the LORD:

The whole Word of God, IS the law of God; it is the constitution of the Kingdom of God

If we are called and accept the call into the New Covenant, then we will have the Law and Word of God written on our hearts through the Holy Spirit of God and we will be keeping and living by every Word of God (Mat 4:4).

31:33 But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the LORD, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be my people. 31:34 And they shall teach no more every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know the LORD: for they shall all know me [be at ONE in spiritual unity with God the father and Jesus Christ through zealous living by every Word of God], from the least of them unto the greatest of them, saith the LORD: for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.

The Mighty One of Jacob declares that the Law of God and the whole Word of God are permanent and shall be forever. This was quoted by Jesus Christ.

Matthew 5:18 For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled [the Word and Law of God will be fulfilled (that is KEPT) forever!].

As long as Israel [including New Covenant  spiritual Israel] exists; the whole Word or God will be kept in enthusiastic zeal! And all those who depart from any part of the Word of God shall be corrected, and if they will not repent, they shall be destroyed forever.

Jeremiah 31:35 Thus saith the LORD, which giveth the sun for a light by day, and the ordinances of the moon and of the stars for a light by night, which divideth the sea when the waves thereof roar; The LORD of hosts is his name: 31:36 If those ordinances depart from before me, saith the LORD, then the seed of Israel also shall cease from being a nation before me for ever.

31:37 Thus saith the LORD; If heaven above can be measured [by physical man], and the foundations of the earth searched out beneath, I will also cast off all the seed of Israel for all that they have done, saith the LORD.

Lawful Sabbath Activities

It is lawful to do those things that God has commanded us to do on the Sabbath, since God is also the maker of the Sabbath and can therefore tell us what he wants us to do on HIS Sabbath; for this reason the Priests may fulfill their God commanded duties on the Sabbath.

Matthew 12:5  Or have ye not read in the law, how that on the sabbath days the priests in the temple profane the Sabbath [by doing the work commanded by God], and are blameless?

Since the Sabbath was made for the good of man, we may also do acts of compassion and mercy; however we are NOT to use the “ox in the ditch” emergency excuse, to justify and excuse habitual Sabbath breaking.

We are not to travel on the Sabbath to the extent that it becomes a tiring labor, nor are we to buy gas, food, drink and lodgings on Sabbath. We are to use the Preparation Day to properly prepare for the Sabbath Day.

We are not to do any cooking on the Sabbath (Ex 16:22-24) nor to do our own things, speak our own words, or to even think our own thoughts. We are to be totally dedicated to our God on his Holy Sabbath Day (Is 56 and Is 58).

We are to do no work at all on God’s Holy Sabbath, except for that which God himself commands to be done, we are to focus on studying God’s Word, discussions of godliness, teaching and learning godliness and prayer, and acts of mercy for the health of others; nor shall we be responsible for any other person or creature being required to do any work on the Sabbath Day.

To pay others to serve us in a restaurant is no different than to pay others to work at any other service. To pay anyone else to do what we would not do ourselves is HYPOCRISY! We are to avoid all appearance of evil (1 Thess 5:22).

Exodus 20:10 But the seventh day is the sabbath of the LORD thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates [subject to our responsibility]:

Cooking, Buying and Work on the Weekly  Sabbath and Annual Holy Days

This scripture is often used by unlearned persons to justify cooking on God’s Holy Sabbaths. 

Speaking of the very first Feast of Unleavened Bread when Israel was leaving Egypt, God allows food preparation on the Holy Days as an extraordinary emergency measure.

Exodus 12:15 And in the first day there shall be an holy convocation, and in the seventh day there shall be an holy convocation to you; no manner of work shall be done in them, save that which every man must eat, that only may be done of you.

This statement that food may be prepared during the Feast of Unleavened Bread has been used to justify food preparation on all subsequent and all other Holy Day Annual Sabbaths by some. Is that a valid assumption?

This verse actually refers to the very First “Feast of Unleavened Bread”  and its two High Holy Days ONLY: allowing food to be prepared and eaten on that very FIRST Feast of Unleavened Bread ONLY.

Some extrapolate from this verse that food may also be prepared and eaten on all subsequent Feasts of ULB Holy Days and all other High Holy Days.

It is necessary to understand that this particular scripture is a history of Israel coming out of Egypt.

After that FIRST Passover, all leftovers had been burned and there was no prepared food available when Israel began the march out of Egypt; later when they had been crossing the Red Sea throughout the sixth day – just before the seventh and Holy Day –  of that Feast there was also not time to prepare food ahead of the seventh day High Holy Day.

Because the people were engaged in an arduous journey out of Egypt and had no food prepared, God as a singular emergency act of mercy, permitted food to be prepared and eaten on this one emergency “ox in the ditch” occasion.

Remember that even the journey itself was not ordinarily lawful on Holy Day’s, but on that one occasion the people were being led directly by God to leave Egypt on those days.

Nowhere else in all scripture is such a liberty [to prepare food on a Sabbath or High Day] permitted. This is simply a record of a special allowance, a special act of mercy; made for a special situation.

This one time act of mercy is an act of merciful exception to the rule, and does NOT justify breaking the commandments for the weekly Sabbath and subsequent annual High Day Sabbaths!

To cook or buy food or drink on God’s weekly and annual Sabbaths except for a very special and extreme extraordinary emergency in SIN!

We must quickly repent and turn from this sin of using Holy Time for our own purposes and pleasures, before we are corrected as physical Israel / Judah were corrected anciently and will be corrected again for the same sin!

The fact that the Passover was the preparation day for the first annual Sabbath of the Feast of Unleavened Bread, on which it was well understood that no work including cooking was to be done; is made clear by the faithful who rushed to entomb Jesus BEFORE the High Day of Unleavened Bread began at sunset that evening.

John 19:31 The Jews therefore, because it was the preparation [the preparation day for the first Holy Day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread], that the bodies should not remain upon the cross on the sabbath day, (for that sabbath day was an high day,) besought Pilate that their legs might be broken, and that they might be taken away.

 

SERVILE WORK

In Leviticus 23 the statements regarding the High Holy Days refer to commands not to do any servile work. This has been taken to mean something different than the “do NOT do ANY work” of the Sabbath command; and has been used to try and  justify cooking and doing other work on the Annual High Days.

The word “abodah” is translated in the KJV as “servile” . The related word “abidah” refers to “work of any kind”.

In reality, far from justifying some types of work like cooking, the term “servile work” is a redoubling of the command to do no work of ANY kind at all; for emphatic emphasis!

No work of any kind, including food preparation and purchasing, which is NOT to be done on any weekly or annual Sabbath! Only acts of mercy for health and safety and anything specifically commanded by God to be done on the weekly and annual Sabbaths may be done.

We are to properly prepare on the preparation day so that everyone might rest from physical duties, and engage in spiritual pursuits, learning about God on His Holy Time

The Weekly Sabbath and the Annual Holy Days are Holy Time. No work of any kind is to be done on them. That means no food preparation or cooking and no buying of food or drink.

Food and drink are to be prepared on the previous day which is the Preparation Day for the Weekly and Annual Sabbaths.

On the weekly and annual Sabbaths we are to do what God has specifically commanded us to do on those days; in addition, acts of mercy are to be done and the days are to be observed by convoking with God as Adam and Eve did and by doing so with other like minded persons.

The Sabbaths are God’s time, not our time; and the Sabbaths are for our good to teach us the way to peace and life eternal.

All mankind is obligated to obey their Creator Father and to spend time with Him, and that time is specified by our Creator to be the seventh day; Friday sunset to Saturday sunset! which seventh day is to be observed week by week FOREVER!  as time to be spent with God in peace and in rest; learning of Him and acknowledging God as Sovereign Creator in a memorial of the completion of creation in six days, the seventh being a rest from that creation and a memorial of that creation.

Exodus 20:8 Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy. 20:9 Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work: 20:10 But the seventh day is the sabbath of the LORD thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that [anyone that you are responsible for] is within thy gates: 20:11 For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the LORD blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it.

We are not to work on that day and we are not to require or force anyone else to work on the seventh day Sabbath. No one. Not an employee, a slave, a servant, an animal, or even a beast of burden shall be required to do any work on the Sabbath Day, for God Almighty has decreed that the seventh day shall be a rest for all living things forever!

In Exodus 31:12,  zeal for keeping the Sabbath is emphasized as one sign between God and his people.  This sign is for us, so that we may have this weekly time to spend with God and learn of him:  “that ye may know that I am the LORD that doth sanctify you.”

Exodus 31:12 And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, 31:13 Speak thou also unto the children of Israel, saying, Verily my sabbaths ye shall keep: for it is a sign between me and you throughout your generations; that ye may know that I am the LORD that doth sanctify you.

Today the Assemblies proclaim the Set Apartness of the Sabbath, and then go out to pollute it on a weekly basis:  FOR SHAME!   They cook, do menial work around the home and pay others to cook and work for them!  For Shame, that the brethren for the most part, speak their own words about business and gossip, and do not discuss the Word of the Eternal! 

For this sin, God proclaims that we are cut off from HIM, and from being accounted among his people as a part of his collective bride!

31:14 Ye shall keep the sabbath therefore; for it is holy unto you: every one that defileth it shall surely be put to death: for whosoever doeth any work therein, that soul shall be cut off from among his people.

The Called Out of Spiritual Israel shall surely be rejected by Christ (Rev 3:14-22) and vomited out of his body into great tribulation, where they will be strongly corrected for defiling the sanctity of God’s Sabbath and Holy Days.

31:15 Six days may work be done; but in the seventh is the sabbath of rest, holy to the LORD: whosoever doeth any work in the sabbath day, he shall surely be put to death.  31:16 Wherefore the children of Israel shall keep the sabbath, to observe the sabbath throughout their generations, for a perpetual covenant.

Keeping the Sabbath, New Moons, Annual Sabbaths and Festivals on God’s schedule in the way that God has said; acknowledges the absolute authority of God and His Word.

31:17 It is a sign between me and the children of Israel for ever: for in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, and on the seventh day he rested, and was refreshed.

This was a sign between Israel and God;  and we must become Israel in the spiritual sense through living by every Word of God (Jer 31).

All the commandments that God gave to physical Israel are equally applicable to all those of the spiritual Israel of the New Covenant; not only in their physical keeping, but in the keeping of the spirit and full intent of those commandments.  For Jesus commanded that we are to live by every Word of God the Father (Mat 4:4). 

Even as physical  Israel was called out of bondage to become the people of God, so the spiritual New Covenant called out people have been called out of bondage to sin to become the people of God. And even as Israel were required to obey their God, spiritual Israel is also required to obey the same God and keep the same commandments.

If we are to be God’s people, just as physical Israel was called to be God’s people, we must absolutely obey and live by every Word of the same God and do the will of God. The Sabbath  was commanded to Adam at creation, and to ALL humanity as Adam’s descendants!  Not just to the Jews.

 

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