Sabbath Truth - Sunrise over Mountains
The Sabbath Blog

Sabbath: Is it First or Last?

Sabbath: Is it First or Last?
In a recent article for the Jewish Press, Rabbi Sacks asks the question, “Is the Sabbath the first day, or the last day?" He points to the Bible’s account of the making of the wilderness Sanctuary and how the Sabbath played a key role in the directions (Exodus 25-40). At the end of God’s instructions to Moses, He reiterates the importance of keeping the seventh-day Sabbath holy—a day of complete rest—as a sign of the covenant relationship He desires to have with His people (Exodus 31:12–17). However, when Moses shared with the people God’s plans for the Sanctuary, he began with the command to keep the Sabbath (Exodus 35:1, 2).

Rabbi Sacks’ article addresses the reasons for referencing the Sabbath in the process of building the Sanctuary. First, God wanted the people to realize that even the sacred work of building a tabernacle was not to be done on the Sabbath. The Sabbath commandment given at Mt. Sinai (Exodus 20:8-11), to cease from all work on the seventh day, is the overarching principle and more important than even the pressing task of building a place for God to dwell among His people in the wilderness (Exodus 25:8).

Second, God wanted the people to recognize that the sacred place of the Sanctuary did not supersede the ‘holiness of time’ found in the Sabbath hours. Jesus identified Himself as Lord of the Sabbath (Mark 2:28). In a conversation with the Jews about the temple, Jesus referenced Himself as the true temple (John 2:19–21). Thus, He identified Himself as the true object of our worship.

Sacks’ final reason is that from God’s perspective, the Sabbath came at the end of Creation, where from man’s perspective, the Sabbath was the first day of his existence. This is a very interesting thought. So we want to know what you think: Is there any significance in the fact that humanity’s first full day was the Sabbath?

It all correlates well with the prophecies in Revelation that identify the Sabbath as the key issue at the end of time. In Revelation 14, the Sabbath commandment is indirectly referenced as the seal of true worship (Revelation 14:6, 7). In the end, the Sabbath is a final sign of loyalty to God—perhaps we should put it first in our lives today.

You can find more to consider and share with your friends by clicking here.