One of the pillars of our calling is the Sabbath day, and failing to keep it can pave the way to losing our identity. I have some special glasses that I occasionally wear on the Sabbath day. The kind you normally use to watch 3-D movies. Let’s put them on and look at three important dimensions of the Sabbath.
“And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose,” Romans 8:28, NKJV.
Not only is this an encouraging verse, it also helps us to understand a deeper dimension of the Sabbath. We know from 1 John 5:3 that the love of God is, “…that we keep His commandments.” So we could say: All things work together for good to those who love God, that is, those who keep His commandments.
In addition, we know that the Sabbath is a sign, and by keeping it God’s people know that it is He who sanctifies them and sets them apart (Exodus 31:13). Obeying the fourth commandment to keep God’s Sabbath opens our minds to who we are and what His work is on this earth, His divine purpose from the beginning of creation.
God created the Sabbath on the 7th day of creation and gave it to mankind to keep them in the knowledge and worship of the true God. A creation demands a Creator! He rested on the seventh day and set it apart, therefore keeping it points us back to God as the Creator.
I find it helpful on the Sabbath to meditate on the earth and outer space. Seeing images of planet earth, a little blue-green-white marble in the blackness of space, is very humbling. We can understand how helpless, dependent, and insignificant we are in this vast universe.
The second dimension of the Sabbath is the present. As we meditate on the incredible details of the creation around us, we can begin to apply the benefits of the Sabbath to our own daily lives. First, we have to rest which gives us time to relax and take our minds off of work. Stop and smell the roses: read, study, pray, or go for a gentle walk. We desperately need spiritual contact with God.
Keeping the Sabbath requires faith, the same kind that’s needed to tithe or give offerings. We must believe that God loves us and will bless us. And we will be blessed during those six days of work to more than compensate for the one on which we rest. It won’t always be a financial blessing, but certainly peace of mind and health!
How do we keep the Sabbath day? Are we united as family at services, physically and spiritually? Do we look for ways to uplift and encourage others? It should be a day of joy, gladness, and delight – a feast day unto the Lord. Meditate on how the Sabbath helps us understand God’s awesome purpose for our lives.
The third dimension of the Sabbath is the future. It pictures the soon-coming Millennium, when all of mankind will experience a “rest” from war, poverty, fear, and suffering. This thousand year period will be the 7th millennial “day,” or Sabbath, of God’s 7,000 year “week.” Isaiah 11 is a beautiful chapter that speaks of this future time, when knowledge of God will cover the earth.
Beyond the Millennium, keeping the Sabbath looks forward to the completion of God’s spiritual creation in man. The Sabbath is a type of the Christian’s future spiritual rest, of actually being born into the divine Kingdom or Family of God. We will no longer struggle with the weaknesses and limitations of the human body, but reign and serve with God the Father and Jesus Christ as beings composed of spirit!
Next Sabbath, slip on your 3-D glasses and gain an in-depth look at the blessing God gave us when He created the Sabbath Day for us!