Acts 17:11 Archives

The Sabbath: A Day of Rest

An excerpt from Dean VanDruff on the patterns of work, and perhaps one way in which "the Sabbath was made for man". Finally, the prophetic meaning of the Sabbath is discussed.

At a purely practical level, the way man thinks is that: "I must work hard to get ahead, and 7 days are better than 6". But we are not made to work this way. If we try this (or as often happens are forced to do this by circumstance--hopefully temporarily) our energy level is sapped, our concentration wanes, and our productivity goes down. We get stressed and burnt out--and it seems like the harder we work the less we get done.

But have you noticed the opposite? The Sabbath principle has a flip side:

Ex 20:9 (NIV) "Six days you shall labour and do all your work..."

If we work five days and rest two days, the morning of the first day back is largely a waste trying to get back into stride. Two days of rest violates the first portion of the Sabbath rhythm. The western idea of a "weekend" is 1 day extra into "shut-down" and thus the Monday restarting goes hard. God made us to work most productively in a cycle of 6 days on and 1 off. We disregard this to our peril.

While the 6 days of work 1 day of rest cycle is important, the day chosen for non-Jews in the New Covenant is not. Again, we are told DIRECTLY in New Testament Scripture to not make a big deal over the Saturday / Sunday thing; or for that matter, of diet:

Rom 14:4-10 (NAS) Who are you to judge the servant of another? To his own master he stands or falls; and stand he will, for the Lord is able to make him stand. One man regards one day above another, another regards every day alike. Let each man be fully convinced in his own mind. He who observes the day, observes it for the Lord, and he who eats, does so for the Lord, for he gives thanks to God; and he who eats not, for the Lord he does not eat, and gives thanks to God. For not one of us lives for himself, and not one dies for himself... But you, why do you judge your brother? Or you again, why do you regard your brother with contempt? For we shall all stand before the judgment seat of God.

So, as noted in a previous posting, the day you take off and consider "The Lord's Day" is not the important thing.

This pattern of 6 plus 1 is an important type beyond just the practical issue of human design and optimal productivity. For we believe it is prophetic and has to do with the millennium.

2 Pet 3:8 (NAS) But do not let this one fact escape your notice, beloved, that with the Lord one day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years like one day.

We are approaching the end of the 6th day (millennium) since creation. Whether this is very soon or some hundreds of years from now could be debated, but we are getting close in any case. And don't you love the little teaser in the scripture above? "Do not let this fact escape your notice, beloved!" Hmmm... And this text is directly in context of the second coming of our Lord.

Lev 23:3 (NAS) "For six days work may be done, but on the seventh day there is a sabbath of complete rest, a holy convocation..."
Whether we conclude that these 1000 year days are symbolic or literal (we think literal) should not dull our perceptions to the beauty of the prophetic rhythm of the Sabbath. And for now, we work. But a day of rest and joyous celebration is coming, perhaps soon!

John 5:16-17 (NAS) For this reason the Jews were persecuting Jesus, because He was doing these [miracles] on the Sabbath. But He answered them, "My Father is working until now, and I Myself am working."

Col 1:29 (Wey) To this end, like an earnest wrestler, I exert all my strength in reliance upon the power of Him who is mightily at work within me.

2 Pet 3:8 (NKJ) But, beloved, do not forget this one thing, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.

Rev 22:20 (NIV) He who testifies to these things says, "Yes, I am coming quickly." Amen. Come, Lord Jesus.

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