What does the Sabbath mean for our relationship with God?
[Darris McNeely] I’ve been working lately on a Beyond Today television remake of one we did earlier about the Sabbath in history and prophecy. And in redoing it, I have added some thoughts out of the book of Genesis regarding the Sabbath that I thought I might share with you here in this Daily.
In Genesis 1:26-27, is the well-known passage where man is created in the image of God. It says that, “‘Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness,’ and so God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.” Man is created in the image of God. And to reflect just on that event that in the sequence of Genesis, takes place on the sixth day of creation – the pinnacle of God’s physical creation is the human creation of man in the image of God, which is telling us a lot of different things, but one in particular is that the image of God means that man can have a relationship with God. Man can have a connection with God. And there’s much yet in the Bible to explain what that relationship is, how it is accomplished. It’s a spiritual relationship. But what takes place next in the Genesis account in chapter 2 is instructed to us. In verse 2 it says that, “on the seventh day, God ended His work which He had done, and He rested on the seventh day from all of His work which He had done” (Genesis 2:2). The account goes on to show the creation of the seventh day, the Sabbath day.
It struck me, which it has in the past, but again, it just came back to my mind, that following on the creation of man on the sixth day, God on the seventh day creates the Sabbath. And in that connection between the creation of the humankind and this day of rest, we have that means by which that relationship with God can be done, as we fellowship with God on His holy Sabbath day.
Years ago, I read a very interesting book about the Sabbath, and they had a quote in there from a teacher that called the Sabbath a temple in time. A temple is where God dwells. The temple of Solomon was where God placed His presence among His people. We don’t have a physical temple today. That has been transcended by other matters. But to look at the Sabbath as a temple – that is, a place where God dwells – His presence is on this day which is what makes it holy, and yet, the time is the seventh day. Our seventh-day period of time which is Saturday, being the Sabbath day – to look at the Sabbath as a place where we take refuge and we come to know about God, we come to learn about God, we come to have fellowship with God, as we keep the Sabbath, as we worship God on the Sabbath, as we keep that day holy and as other scriptures show, we take our foot off of the Sabbath day (Isaiah 58:13-14).
That is the connection. That is how we develop this relationship with God, on the Sabbath day. And then, allow God to do His work in us, creating us in his spiritual image. A thought about the Sabbath – an important principle – commandment, the fourth commandment of God, the principle of it being a temple in time, to help us appreciate what God has given to us, as He develops that relationship with us.
That’s BT Daily. Join us next time.