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Sabbath

Appointed Time #1

God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And there was evening and there was morning, the first day… And on the seventh day God finished his work that he had done, and he rested on the seventh day from all his work that he had done. So God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because on it God rested from all his work that he had done in creation. Genesis 1:5; 2:1-3

A weekly day of rest. Six days to work and one to stop, give thanks, rest, and be refreshed in God’s presence. Notice that God instructed His people to rest at least one day a week knowing that, by nature, we are more inclined to work all the time, devote little time to God or ourselves, and wear ourselves out prematurely in the process.

“Six days shall work be done, but on the seventh day is a Sabbath of solemn rest, a holy convocation. You shall do no work. It is a Sabbath to the Lord in all your dwelling places.” Leviticus 23:3

“The LORD has established His throne in the heavens, and His kingdom rules over all.”     Psalm 103:19

How and when

According to the account in Genesis, when God created time He first created night and then day, which makes sense because there must first be darkness before light can penetrate it. While a day in the secular calendar arbitrarily begins and ends at midnight, a Jewish day goes from nightfall to nightfall. The weekly Sabbath or Shabbat begins on Friday evening, and on those dates where certain unrestful activities are restricted – such as working on Shabbat or major holidays – the restrictions go into effect the same evening, except for most fast days which begin at sunrise the following morning.

A question: Adam and Eve were tempted by the voice of the serpent to put aside one of God’s clear instructions in the garden. They chose to disobey. What were the consequences? What price do we pay when we ignore His appeal to us to set aside time to rest?