Sabbath Rest

Dear Brethren,

Some people say that the Sabbath commandment was nailed to the cross.  They teach that there no longer remains a keeping of the Sabbath for the people of God.  What is the Truth?  The answer that the world cannot receive is this:  The Sabbath is a part of God’s spiritual creation.  At the Genesis creation, mankind was given the sun to mark the days, the moon to mark the months, and the stars to mark the years.  But, where does the time period we refer to as the "seven day week" come from?  Its origin is not to be found in the heavens like the day, the month and the year!

God had to give mankind the seven-day week with the Sabbath at its end because it is not found in nature.  The Sabbath is a part of God’s spiritual creation.  The whole world goes by the seven-day week – but few remember the origin of it – fewer still, keep it holy.  Jesus said unto them, "The Sabbath was made for man.” (Mark 2:27).  The Sabbath is the memorial that reminds us each week, not only of God’s physical creation, but also of His incredible future spiritual plans for mankind's future.  There are few who understand that the Sabbath is a memorial of creation, or who believe that the weekly Sabbath rest is the promise of the prophesied one thousand year Kingdom of God on earth (Revelation 20:6).  The weekly Saturday Sabbath is intended to be a time of fellowship, not only with God the Father and Jesus Christ, but with our brethren as well.

The Sabbath day is holy because it was God, Himself, who set the seventh day apart form all the rest. The Sabbath is Biblically commanded – given to us by God. The Sabbath was kept by Jesus Christ, the Apostles, and all the faithful New Testament Church members.  God is the one who made it holy.”  By resting on the seventh day, God "sanctified" it, setting it apart for a special purpose.  After completing His work of re-creating the face of the earth and creating all physical life, including mankind, God rested!  And God blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it: because that in it He had rested from all His work which God created and made.” (Genesis 2:3)

The Sabbath day is to be kept in a special way.  It is the fourth of God’s Ten Commandments.  Remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy.”  But the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord thy God." (Exodus 20:8-10). Six days shall work be done: but the seventh day is the Sabbath of rest, a holy convocation; ye shall do no work therein: it is the Sabbath of the Lord in all your dwellings.” (Leviticus 23:3)

When Jesus came to the earth in fleshly form, He observed the Saturday Sabbath in a holy way.  The Sabbath day is listed among the Feasts of the Lord,” that is why Jesus sanctified the Sabbath day.  [Jesus] came to Nazareth, where He had been brought up: and, as His custom was, He went into the synagogue on the Sabbath day.”  (Luke 4:16)  The Scriptures show that Jesus Christ is our example and that we should follow in his steps: Jesus told His disciples to teach all nations to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you.” (Matthew 28:20)

Have you ever wondered if you were truly one of God's chosen people?  There is a way that you can be sure.  There is an identifying Sign” between God and His people.  To "sanctify" means to set apart for a special purpose – it is the same word as, holy.”  God made a Sabbath covenant with His people for all time.The Sabbath is an identifying sign.  Only those who worship the true God and are obedient to keep His Sabbath, are holy people.

Keep in mind that those who have faith in Jesus Christ are spiritual Israelites (Galatians 3:26-29, 6:16): 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.” (Exodus 31:13)  God sets His people apart!

The Sabbath is different from all the other days of the week in that it points to the Creator God. Each Sabbath day is a reminder to us of the true Creator God. The word "Sabbath" means "rest" in the Hebrew language, but God’s Sabbath goes far beyond simply resting physically – it also points to the soon coming millennial rest when Jesus Christ will rule this earth for one thousand years:  It is a sign between me and the children of Israel forever: for in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, and on the seventh day He rested, and was refreshed.” (Exodus 31:17)  God was not tired - He was creating spiritual time for our benefit.

Make no mistake about it - the Sabbath is the test commandment.  God does put man to a test.  Isn’t it interesting that most of the world worships on Sunday, or like the Moslem world, on Friday, when the Bible calls for Saturday Sabbath observance?  God in His wisdom has made the Sabbath a test” commandment.  To test ancient Israel in the wilderness, God sent them manna with specific instructions for gathering it: God said, that I may prove them, whether they will walk in my law, or not.” For us today, the Sabbath is still the crucial test commandment to allow God to see who will voluntarily obey.The Sabbath identifies those who have truly surrendered their will to God’s will.

The common time for the calendar day begins and ends at midnight.  God measures time differently.  The Sabbath begins and ends at sunset.God’s day ends when the sun has set – the day is over.  We get our term, evening,” from this event.  At evening, when the sun did set.” (Mark 1:32)

Here is a truism that few will accept.  It is only Sabbath-keepers who have God’s Holy Spirit.  How can that be?  A person cannot have God’s Holy Spirit unless he observes the Sabbath day.  The Sabbath is one of the Ten Commandments, which God commands us to obey. It is the Holy Spirit, that God has given to them that obey Him.” (Acts 5:32.)  God gives His Holy Spirit only to those who obey Him!  God has not given His authority to anyone to change to Sun-day observance.

Some people will try to demean the Sabbath as a Jewish day.  The Sabbath is God's day - not the Jews' day.  Notice the Scripture that says, "Six days shall work be done: but the seventh day is the Sabbath of rest, an holy convocation; ye shall do no work therein: it is the Sabbath of the Lord in all your dwellings."  (Leviticus 23:3)  God intends for man to work six days and then to rest and be spiritually rejuvenated.  Many years after the death of Jesus Christ, the apostle Paul confirmed that the Sabbath commandment was in force for all Christians. There remains therefore a keeping of the Sabbath for the people of God.” (Hebrews 4:9)

Jesus Christ has supreme authority over the Sabbath day - He created it and kept it.  The Sabbath was made for man, and not man for the Sabbath: Therefore the Son of man [Jesus] is Lord also of the Sabbath.” (Mark 2:27-28)


Sermon:  "Sabbath Rest