Sabbath Keeping

Part II - When It Was Established

 

 

1. Before proceeding with this treatise, it is very important that one first read "Sabbath Keeping, Part I - Why It Was Established". If you are one who worships the idol of sabbath keeping, or are confused by those who teach the heresy of current day sabbath keeping, then you need to know that sabbath keeping was only a temporary tool God used to bring His children into His rest.

 

2. End of the week sabbath keeping was first brought to the attention of man, and only the Hebrews, circa two and one-half thousand years after the creation of man in the Garden of Eden. This brings us to circa 1,500 BC, and Exodus 16:22-23 KJV, "22 And it came to pass, that on the sixth day they gathered twice as much bread, two omers for one man: and all the rulers of the congregation came and told Moses. 23 And he said unto them, This is that which [Yahowah] hath said, To morrow is the rest of the holy sabbath unto [Yahowah]: bake that which ye will bake to day, and seethe that ye will seethe; and that which remaineth over lay up for you to be kept until the morning." Prior to this, the sabbath was unknown to man and not in the Scriptures of the Holy Bible. How do we know that the sabbath was unknown to man prior to Exodus 16:23? Look at Deuteronomy 5:15 KJV, "And remember that thou wast a servant in the land of Egypt, and that [Yahowah] thy God brought thee out thence through a mighty hand and by a stretched out arm: therefore [Yahowah] thy God commanded thee to keep the sabbath day." See also Exodus 31:13. As you can read in verse fifteen, God gave the command to the Hebrews to keep the sabbath day of rest after He brought them out of the land of Egypt 430 years after He brought them into Egypt. This was circa 1,500 BC. If anyone can find an earlier date that God told anyone to keep the sabbath, or even told anyone that there was such a thing as the sabbath then please share this Scripture with us. We need to know.

 

3.a. There are some who mistakenly believe that the sabbath was instituted by God in Genesis 2:2-3 KJV, "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. 3 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." You will notice that the word sabbath is not in these two verses, nor in the book of Genesis at all. God did not call the seventh day of creation, the day on which He ceased from His creation activities, a sabbath day. Nor can it be shown in Scripture that the seventh day of creation falls into the Saturday slot. When God introduced the seventh day of creation as a day of rest, He was introducing His rest which He had prepared and desired for man to enter into, He was not introducing weekly sabbath keeping.  In fact, the seventh day of creation week is a Friday, not a Saturday or Sabbath: see our treatise on the "Calendar of Scripture" parts I and II.

 

3.b. Furthermore, if God was introducing weekly sabbath keeping in Genesis 2, then why did He not do it on a sabbath day? There is no Biblical evidence to confirm that the seventh day of creation was a sabbath day. In fact, since Genesis 2 does not call the seventh day a sabbath, that would strongly suggest that it was not. If the doctrine of sabbath keeping was being introduced in Genesis 2, it would have benefited our tiny minds if our Creator had told us so, by at least telling us that He was talking about the sabbath. But He did not. He did not, because He was not introducing the doctrine of weekly sabbath keeping, instead He was introducing the doctrine of spiritual rest from our labors. See "Sabbath Keeping, Part I - Why It Was Established". There is more Biblical evidence to show that the seventh day of creation was not a sabbath. However, to explain this, one must have knowledge of the Calendar of Scripture and one must assume that God began creation on the first day of the first month of the first year of creation. Why would He not?

 

3.c. God further supports the doctrine of entering into His rest with sabbath days that are not the seventh day of a perfect week. Days such as the feast days of Scripture and those days that specify that no work is to be done. The weekly sabbath was only one of several tools God used to teach us the doctrine of entering into His rest.

 

3.d. But for those that mistakenly believe that sabbath keeping is a doctrine in and of itself, for those who preach and teach the gospel of man, it is very important to them to establish its beginning in Genesis 2, a place where it simply is not found no matter how much bantering they do about it. Because sabbath keeping is not an end to itself, sabbath keeping is merely a temporary tool used by our Creator to teach us about His sabbath rest. Sabbath keeping was given only to the Hebrews and only after they departed Egypt. Ezekiel 20:12 KJV, "Moreover also I gave them my sabbaths, to be a sign between me and them, that they might know that I am [Yahowah] that sanctify them." See also Nehemiah 9:13-14 (Part III).

 

4.a. Subsequently, God furthered the doctrine of entering into His rest by introducing the weekly sabbath rest in Exodus 16:23, and three weeks later making it part of the Torah and the Ten Commandments in Exodus 20:8-11 KJV, "8 Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy. 9 Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work: 10 But the seventh day is the sabbath of [Yahowah] 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: 11 For in six days [Yahowah] made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore [Yahowah] blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it.

 

4.b. Once again, for those who erroneously teach that these verses confirm that weekly sabbath keeping was taught in Genesis 2, we will take a closer look at these verses. First, I will point out the obvious. It is highly doubtful that God would start a teaching in Genesis 2:2-3 (wherein the sabbath was never mentioned) and then totally drop the subject for two and one-half thousand years; then continue with the teaching in Exodus 20:10-11. In Exodus 20:10a the word sabbath is written again, but it is not referring back to Genesis 2 and calling the seventh day of creation the sabbath. Instead, it is referring to the seventh day of a complete week and drawing a comparison, a type, with the six days of work performed in Genesis chapter one followed by a day of rest. Why is there a difference between the seventh day of creation and an end of the week sabbath? As discussed in paragraph 3a above, there is no Biblical proof that the seventh day of creation was the end of a complete week; in other words, there is no proof that it was in the Saturday slot. It should be no surprise that the Scriptural Calendar does not look like Gregory's calendar. After all, Pope Gregory was part of the antichrist system and it was prophesied that this antichrist would think to change the times. Daniel 7:25 KJV, "And he shall speak great words against the most High, and shall wear out the saints of the most High, and think to change times and laws: and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and the dividing of time." The changing of times has occurred from the Scriptural Calendar, with its Lunar and Sun times pieces, to a Sun only based calendar.

 

4.c. In Exodus 20:11 the sabbath is written again. It says that "Yahowah blessed the sabbath day". The sabbath day which Yahowah blessed is the sabbath day mentioned in verse 8; and the seventh day and the sabbath day written in verse 10a; but it is not calling the seventh day of creation in verse 11 a sabbath day. Instead, it is merely using, once again, the pattern of the seventh day of creation as a type. It is saying that the pattern is that the seventh day following six days of work, is a sabbath. God even blessed and sanctified the seventh day of creation week, but He never called it a sabbath. Why is this distinction so important? It is important because those who want weekly sabbath observing to be a physical requirement for resting will never understand and strive for the spiritual rest - that God is teaching - that God has prepared for us and desires for us to enter. The Law is contrary to us and prevents us from entering into His rest. We will never obtain His rest, our salvation, by our own physical exertion and mental resolve to do so. It can only be obtained by trusting, believing, and having faith in the Almighty God, Yahowah is His name.

 

4.d. Besides, the sabbath rest was only given to the Hebrews in the Desert of Sin. Does that mean the rest of mankind is left out in the cold? Not at all. We all can enter into His rest, not by observing the Law or a weekly Sabbath, but by placing our faith and hope in the finished work of Yahoshua the Messiah upon the execution stake of Calvary.

 

5. Do not let this next point escape your notice, you may miss your salvation and end up on the road to hell. Even though the Hebrews fleeing Egypt to the Promise Land observed the weekly sabbath as required by the Torah, they did not enter into His rest. But those who believed the gospel enter into His rest. Hebrews 4:2-3,6 KJV, "2 For unto us was the gospel preached, as well as unto them: but the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard it. 3 For we which have believed do enter into rest, as he said, As I have sworn in my wrath, if they shall enter into my rest: although the works were finished from the foundation of the world. 6 Seeing therefore it remaineth that some must enter therein, and they to whom it was first preached entered not in because of unbelief."

 

6. We welcome constructive input supported by Scriptures from the Bible. Please contact us by using the contact icon. Copyright © 2010 Richard Douglas Mauck and/or Sandra Faye Mauck. All rights reserved. This material is copyrighted to protect the integrity of this work. Permission is hereby granted to copy this treatise in its entirety as long as no editing is done, no charge is made to those with whom it is shared, and full credit is given to the authors.