Summary: Genesis verse-by-verse
[Trouble sitting still, RLS, etc illustrations.]
For some of us it’s hard to sit still. For some of us it’s hard to just stop and rest. But there’s a solution to that, it’s called Nyquil! (A couple slugs of that and you’ll sit still.)
But seriously, God didn’t intend on us being busy and working all the time. He knows we need to have time to rest and to reflect on things. And just getting your eight hours of sleep a night isn’t enough. We all need to take a break. We all need a day of rest. We all need a Sabbath. A Sabbath just like the one that God took on the first seventh day of the week.
So what we’re going to do tonight is look at how the Sabbath got it’s beginning. We’re also going to follow it’s journey through the Scriptures, and through the ages, and see how the Sabbath’s journey isn’t done yet. And the amazing thing is that throughout time, the Sabbath’s principles and purposes pretty much stay the same. So let’s look at the first Sabbath or the:
I. Edanic Sabbath
[Read Genesis 2:1-3.]
1. God completed all His work, 2:1, (finished creation)
2. God rested from His work, 2:2, (ceased)
3. God sanctified the seventh day, 2:3, (appointed the Sabbath to be a day of rest)
So after creating this incredible universe the Lord decided that He would stop His work
and take a Sabbath.
Now, what did the Lord do? Was Saturday His day off? Did the Lord let the angels handle things while He rested? Did He not answer prayers or work miracles on Saturday back then? Does He still rest on the Sabbath?
Well I don’t think the Lord ever stops loving His creation and taking care of us. And I don’t think the Lord ever looks at the Sabbath through the eyes of legalism like many did in the past and still do today. I think the implication of the Scripture simply means that the Lord stopped working on the seventh day and probably reflected on His work.
[Read Genesis 2:3.]
I happen to think that as the Lord had this all planned out before the seventh day. He in eternity past had decided that in six days He would create the universe and on the seventh He would rest. Rest from all His work, and reflect on the work He had done. Not in the same way that we reflect, but rather reflect in enjoyment of what He had created.
I can’t see the Lord creating the universe and then just walking away without appreciating what He had done. It’s not like us when we leave work and want work to stay at work. This was His creation. Something that He would love and sustain and nurture. I think as He rested He reflected on the work of His hands.
- Principle: Rest and reflection
- Application: Seventh day of every week, no work, reflect on creation, pattern for man
Now, did Adam and his descendants continue to follow God’s pattern of the Sabbath? I happen to think so. Especially since the Lord sanctified, or appointed the seventh day of the week to be the Sabbath. After all, Adam and Eve were instructed to work the garden and rule the earth. But just like the Lord, they would take off on Saturday, rest and reflect on the Lord.
But like everything else, the Sabbath started to get off track after the fall of man. So the next time we see the Sabbath mentioned in Scripture it’s when the Lord has to lay down the law through Moses. (Get it, lay down the law, etc.) So the next phase of the Sabbath is the:
II. Mosaic Sabbath
After the Lord had delivered the Israelites out of Egypt they were on the move in the wilderness. Food and water was an issue. The people started to complain because things were getting tough for them in this area. So the Lord said that for six days of the week He would provide food for them with the manna in the mornings and the quail in the evenings. But only for six days because the Sabbath was still to be a day of rest.
[Read Exodus 16:22-26]
The Lord did this not only as a means of providing for His people, but as a way of testing their obedience to Him.
[Read Exodus 16:4]
You see, if the Lord says He will provide in a certain way, then we need to trust Him. The people needed to trust Him that six days of work was enough to provide for seven days in a week. I tell you what, this is a principle that we need to heed today. If we feel like we need to work ourselves to death to provide for our families, then maybe we aren’t trusting the Lord to provide for us.