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Post  Admin on Sun 19 Sep 2010, 9:37 am

Jewish Sabbath. The Jewish Sabbath was distinctive and was treated at length in the Bible.
Origin. The Sabbath was of divine institution and is so declared in passages where ceasing to create is called "resting" (Gen 2:3; Ex 20:11; 31:17). The blessing and sanctifying of the seventh day have regard, no doubt, to the Sabbath, which Israel, as the people of God, was afterward to keep; but we are
not to suppose that the theocratic (Jewish) Sabbath was thus early instituted.
The Sabbath was instituted by Moses. It is in Ex 16:23-29 that we find the first indisputable institution of the day, as one given to and to be kept by the children of Israel. Shortly afterward it was reenacted in the fourth commandment. Many of the rabbis date its first institution from the incident recorded in Ex 15:25. This, however, seems to lack foundation. We are not on sure ground until we come to the unmistakable institution in chap. 16, in
connection with the gathering of manna. The opinion of Grotius is probably correct, that the day was already known, and in some measure observed as holy, but that the rule of abstinence from work was first given then, and shortly afterward more explicitly imposed in the fourth commandment.
Purpose. The Sabbath was a means of binding together more closely the chosen people and keeping them apart from the rest of mankind. Two reasons are given for its observance in Israel-God's resting on the seventh day of creation (Ex 20:8-11; 31:16-17) and Israel's having been a "slave in the land of Egypt" and having been brought "out of there by a mighty hand and by an outstretched arm"
(Deut 5:15). "These are not the subjects of Sabbath celebration; indeed, the Sabbath has no one event as the subject of its observance, but is only the day which Israel is called to sanctify to the Lord its God, because God blessed and hallowed the day at the creation by resting on it. The completion of creation, the rest of God, is His blessedness in the contemplation of the finished work,
the satisfaction of God in His work, which overflows in blessing upon His creatures. This blessedness was lost to the world through the Fall, but not forever, for, through redemption, divine mercy will restore it. The rest of God is the goal which the whole creation is destined to reach. To guide to this goal, the Sabbath was enjoined by way of compensation for the losses which accrue to man under the curse of sin, from that heavy, oppressive labor which draws him from God. Thus the Sabbath was hallowed, i.e., separated from other days of the week to be a holy day for man, by putting the blessing of his rest on the rest of this day.
The return of this blessed and hallowed day is to be to him a perpetual reminder and enjoyment of the divine rest.
This significance of the Sabbath explains why its keeping through all future generations of Israel is called a perpetual covenant and a sign between Jehovah and the children of Israel forever (Ex31:17)" (Keil, Arch., 2:2 ff.).
Observance. According to Mosaic law the Sabbath was observed: (1) By cessation from labor (Ex 20:10). The idea of work is not more precisely defined in the law, except that the kindling of fire for cooking is expressly forbidden (35:3), and the gathering of wood is treated as a transgression (Num 15:32-36);
wherefore it is evident that work, in its widest sense, was to cease.
"Accordingly, it was quite in keeping with the law when not only labor, such as burden-bearing (Jer 17:21-27), but traveling, as forbidden by Ex 16:29, and trading (Amos 8:5) were to cease on the Sabbath, and when Nehemiah, to prevent marketing on this day, ordered the closing of the gates" (Neh 10:31; 13:15,19).
(2) By a holy assembly, the doubling of the daily offering by two lambs of the first year, with the corresponding meat and drink offerings (Num 28:9-10) and the providing of new bread of the Presence in the Holy Place (Lev 24:8). Thus the Sabbath was to Israel a "day of . . . gladness" (Num 10:10; cf. Hos 2:11),
"a delight, the holy day of the Lord honorable" (Isa 58:13).
From such passages it will appear that the essence of Sabbath observance is placed in the most unconditional and all-embracing self-denial, the renunciation of the whole natural being and natural desires, the most unconditional dedication to God (see Isa 56:2; Ezek 20:12,21).
The object of this cessation from labor and coming together in holy convocation was to give man an opportunity to engage in such
mental and spiritual exercises as would tend to the quickening of soul and spirit and the strengthening of spiritual life. In this higher sense it is evident that our Lord meant that "the Sabbath was made for man" (Mark 2:27).
Reward. According to Ezekiel (Ezek 20:12,20) the Sabbath was to be a sign between Jehovah and Israel, "that they might know that I am the Lord who sanctifies them." That is, "that Jehovah was sanctifying them-viz., by the Sabbath rest-as a refreshing and elevation of the mind, in which Israel was to have a foretaste of that blessed resting from all works to which the people of
God was ultimately to attain" (Keil, Com., ad loc.). The penalty of defiling the Sabbath was death (Ex 31:15; cf. Num 15:32-36). But if the law of the Sabbath was broken through ignorance or mistake, pardon was extended after the presentation of a sin offering. At times the Jews dispensed with the extreme severity of the law (Isa 56:2; Ezek 20:16; 22:8; Lam 2:6; Neh 13:16); indeed, the legal observance of the Sabbath seems never to have been rigorously enforced until after the Exile.
Typology. The Sabbath commemorates God's creation rest. It marks a finished creation. After Sinai it was a day of legal obligation. The Sabbath is mentioned often in the book of Acts in connection with the Jews. In the rest of the NT it occurs but twice (Col 2:16; Heb 4:4). In these passages the Sabbath is set forth
not as a day to be observed but as typical of the present rest into which the believer entered when he "also rested [ceased] from his works" (v. 10) and trusted Christ.
Contrast to the First Day of the Week. As the Sabbath commemorates God's creation rest, the first day speaks of Christ's resurrection. The seventh day marks God's creative rest. On the first day Christ was unceasingly active. The seventh day commemorates a finished creation, the first day a finished
redemption. In the present dispensation of grace Sunday perpetuates the truth that one-seventh of one's time belongs to God. In every other particular there is contrast.
BIBLIOGRAPHY: J. Orr, The Sabbath Scripturally and Practically Considered
(1886); C. L. Feinberg, The Sabbath and the Lord's Day (1952); R. T. Beckwith
and W. Stott, This Is the Day (1978); N. Turner, Christian Words (1980), pp.
(from The New Unger's Bible Dictionary. Originally published by Moody Press of
Chicago, Illinois. Copyright ©️ 1988.)
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The ancient Babylonian calendar, as seen from recently recovered inscriptions on the bricks among the ruins of the royal palace, was based on the division of time into weeks of seven days. The Sabbath is in these inscriptions designated Sabattu, and defined as "a day of rest for the heart" and "a day of completion of labour."
The change of the day. Originally at creation the seventh day of the week was set apart and consecrated as the Sabbath. The first day of the week is now observed as the Sabbath. Has God authorized this change? There is an obvious distinction between the Sabbath as an institution and the particular day set
apart for its observance. The question, therefore, as to the change of the day in no way affects the perpetual obligation of the Sabbath as an institution.
Change of the day or no change, the Sabbath remains as a sacred institution the same. It cannot be abrogated.
If any change of the day has been made, it must have been by Christ or by his authority. Christ has a right to make such a change (Mark 2:23-28). As Creator,
Christ was the original Lord of the Sabbath (John 1:3; Heb 1:10). It was originally a memorial of creation. A work vastly greater than that of creation has now been accomplished by him, the work of redemption. We would naturally expect just such a change as would make the Sabbath a memorial of that greater work.
True, we can give no text authorizing the change in so many words. We have no express law declaring the change. But there are evidences of another kind. We know for a fact that the first day of the week has been observed from apostolic
times, and the necessary conclusion is, that it was observed by the apostles and their immediate disciples. This, we may be sure, they never would have done without the permission or the authority of their Lord.
After his resurrection, which took place on the first day of the week (Matt 28:1; Mark 16:2; Luke 24:1; John 20:1), we never find Christ meeting with his disciples on the seventh day. But he specially honoured the first day by manifesting himself to them on four separate occasions (Matt 28:9; Luke 24:34,18-33; John 20:19-23). Again, on the next first day of the week, Jesus appeared to his disciples (John 20:26).
Some have calculated that Christ's ascension took place on the first day of the week. And there can be no doubt that the descent of the Holy Ghost at Pentecost was on that day (Acts 2:1). Thus Christ appears as instituting a new day to be observed by his people as the Sabbath, a day to be henceforth known amongst them as the "Lord's day." The observance of this "Lord's day" as the Sabbath was the general custom of the primitive churches, and must have had apostolic sanction (comp. Acts 20:3-7; 1 Cor 16:1,2) and authority, and so the sanction and authority of Jesus Christ.
The words "at her sabbaths" (Lam 1:7, A.V.) ought probably to be, as in the Revised Version, "at her desolations. "
(from Easton's Bible Dictionary, PC Study Bible formatted electronic database
Copyright ©️ 2003 Biblesoft, Inc. All rights reserved.)
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Isaiah (Isa 1:13) condemns hypocritical keeping of sabbath. So Christ condemns the burdensome sabbath restraints multiplied by the Pharisees, violating the law of mercy and man's good for which the sabbath was instituted (Matt 12:2,10-11;
Luke 13:14; 14:1,5; John 7:22; Mark 2:23-28); yet inviting guests to a social meal was lawful, even in their view (Luke 14:5).
Not inaction, but rest from works of neither mercy nor necessity, is the rule of the sabbath.
Man's rest is to be like God's rest. His work did not cease at the close of the six days, nor has it ceased ever since (John 5:17; Isa 40:28; Ps 95:4-5). God's rest was satisfaction in contemplating His work, so "very good," just completed in the creation of man its topstone (Gen 1:31). So man's rest is in the sabbath
being the dose of week day labour done in faith toward God. God orders "six days shalt thou labour," as well as "remember the sabbath" (Ex 20:8-11). "Remember" marks that the sabbath was already long known to Israel, and that they only needed their "minds stirred up by way of remembrance. "
The fourth commandment alone of the ten begins so.
The sabbath is thus a foretaste of the heavenly
(sabbatism) "keeping of sabbath" (Heb 4:9-10 margin), when believers shall rest from fatiguing "labours" (Rev 14:13). The Sabbath reminds man he is made in the
image of God. Philo calls it "the imaging forth of the first beginning."
It was to the Israelite the center of religious observances, and essentially connected
with the warning against idolatry (Lev 19:3-4; Ezek 20:16,20).
The early church met to break bread on the first day (Acts 20:7); it was the day for laying by of alms for the poor (1 Cor 16:2). No formal decree changed the Sabbath from the seventh to the first day; this would only have offended the Jews and weak Christians. At first both days were kept. But when Judaizing Christians wished to bring Christians under the bondage of the law, and the Jews became open antagonists of the church, the observance of the Jewish Sabbath was tacitly laid aside, and the Lord's day alone was kept; see Col 2:16. Moses, the law's representative, could not lead Israel into Canaan. The law leads to Christ, there its office ceases: it is Jesus, the Antitype of Joshua, who leads
us into the heavenly rest (Heb 4:8-9). So legal sacrifices continued until the antitypical sacrifice superseded it. As the antitypical Sabbath rest will not be until Christ comes to usher us into it, the typical earthly Sabbath must continue until then.
A lawful Sabbath day's journey (Acts 1:12) was reckoned from the distance between the ark and the tents, judged by that between the ark and the people in Josh 3:4, to repair to the ark on the Sabbath being a duty; namely, 2,000 paces, or about six furlongs, reckoned not from each man's house but from the wall of
the city. The Levites' suburbs extended to the same distance from their walls (Num 35:5). (See GEZER). Ganneau thinks Bethphage marked on the E. the boundary
of the sabbatic zone which on every side surrounded the city. The MOUNT OF OLIVES (which see) was exactly, as the writer of Acts says, "a sabbath day's
journey from Jerusalem." What point in the mountain could this be except the village of the mountain, which occupied its principal summit, and now bears its name (Kefr et Tur, i.e. village of the mount; Bethphage)? (Palestine Exploration Quarterly Statement, Apri1:1878, p. 60). Christ tells His disciples, as
retaining Jewish feelings, in Jerusalem to pray that their flight might not be on the Sabbath, when they could only go 2,000 paces front the city walls (Matt 24:20). Ex 16:29 refers to not going from their place to gather manna on the Sabbath.
(from Fausset's Bible Dictionary, Electronic Database Copyright (c)1998, 2003 by Biblesoft)
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Heb 4:9, "there remaineth a keeping of sabbath (sabbatismos) to the people of God." God's rest ("My rest" Heb 4:3) was a sabbatism, so will ours be; a home for the exile, a mansion for the pilgrim, a sabbath for the workman weary of the world's weekday toil. In time there are many sabbaths, then there shall be one
perfect and eternal. The "rest" in Heb 4:8 is katapausis; Heb. nowach, rest from weariness: as the ark rested on Ararat after its tossings; as Israel, under Joshua, rested from war in Canaan. Anesis (2 Thess 1:7), relaxation from afflictions. Anapausis, "rest," given by Jesus now (Matt 11:28); but the "rest"
in Heb 4:9 is the nobler sabbath rest; katapausis, literally, cessation from work finished (Heb 4:4) as God rested from His (Rev 14:13; 16:17). The two ideas combined give the perfect view of the heavenly sabbath: rest from weariness, sorrow, and sin; and rest in the completion of God's new creation (Rev 21:5).
The renovated creation shall share in it. Nothing will there be to break the sabbath of eternity. The Triune God shall rejoice in the work of His hands (Zeph 3:17). The Jews call the future rest "the day which is all sabbath."
(from Fausset's Bible Dictionary, Electronic Database Copyright (c)1998, 2003 by Biblesoft)
Heb 4:9-11
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9 There remains, then, a Sabbath” rest for the people of God; 10 for anyone who enters God's rest also rests from his own work, just as God did from his. 11 Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest, so that no one will fall by following their example of disobedience NIV
Heb 4:2-3
2 For we also have had the gospel preached to us, just as they did; but the message they heard was of no value to them, because those who heard did not combine it with faith.3 Now we who have believed enter that rest, just as God has said,
"So I declared on oath in my anger,
'They shall never enter my rest.'" NIV
Heb 4:5-8
5 And again in the passage above he says, "They shall never enter my rest."
6 It still remains that some will enter that rest, and those who formerly had the gospel preached to them did not go in, because of their disobedience. 7 Therefore God again set a certain day, calling it Today, when a long time later he spoke through David, as was said before:
"Today, if you hear his voice,
do not harden your hearts."
8 For if Joshua had given them rest, God would not have spoken
later about another day.NIV
2 Thess 1:7-10
7 and give relief to you who are troubled, and to us as well. This will happen when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven in blazing fire with his powerful angels. 8 He will punish those who do not know God and do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus. 9 They will be punished with everlasting destruction and shut
out from the presence of the Lord and from the majesty of his power 10 on the day he comes to be glorified in his holy people and to be marveled at among all those who have believed. This includes you, because you believed our testimony to you.
Matt 11:28-30
28 "Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29
Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy and my burden is light." NIV
Matt 12:1-8
12:1 At that time Jesus went through the grainfields on the Sabbath. His disciples were hungry and began to pick some heads of grain and eat them. 2 When the Pharisees saw this, they said to him, "Look! Your disciples are doing what is unlawful on the Sabbath."
3 He answered, "Haven't you read what David did when he and his companions were hungry? 4 He entered the house of God, and he and his companions ate the consecrated bread ” which was not lawful for them to do, but only for the priests. 5 Or haven't you read in the Law that on the Sabbath the priests in the temple desecrate the day and yet are innocent? 6 I tell you that one greater than the temple is here. 7 If you had known what these words mean, 'I desire mercy, not sacrifice,' you would not have condemned the innocent. 8 For the Son of Man is Lord of the Sabbath." NIV
Matt 12:9-13
9 Going on from that place, he went into their synagogue, 10 and a man with a shriveled hand was there. Looking for a reason to accuse Jesus, they asked him, "Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath?"
11 He said to them, "If any of you has a sheep and it falls into a pit on the Sabbath, will you not take hold of it and lift it out? 12 How much more valuable is a man than a sheep! Therefore it is lawful to do good on the Sabbath."
13 Then he said to the man, "Stretch out your hand." So he stretched it out and it was completely restored, just as sound as the other. 14 But the Pharisees went out and plotted how they might kill Jesus. NIV
Rev 21:5
5 He who was seated on the throne said, "I am making everything new!" Then he said, "Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true." NIV
Rev 14:13
13 Then I heard a voice from heaven say, "Write: Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord from now on."
"Yes," says the Spirit, "they willrest from their labor, for their deeds will follow them." NIV
Zeph 3:17 - 20
17 The LORD thy God in the midst of thee is mighty; he will save, he will rejoice over thee with joy; he will rest in his love, he will joy over thee with singing.
18 I will gather them that are sorrowful for the solemn assembly, who are of thee, to whom the reproach of it was a burden.
19 Behold, at that time I will undo all that afflict thee: and I will save her that halteth, and gather her that was driven out; and I will get them praise and fame in every land where they have been put to shame.
20 At that time will I bring you again, even in the time that I gather you: for I will make you a name and a praise among all people of the earth, when I turn back your captivity before your eyes, saith the LORD.KJV
Ps 74:18-23
18 Remember how the enemy has mocked you, O LORD, how foolish people have reviled your name. 19 Do not hand over the life of your dove to wild beasts; do not forget the lives of your afflicted people forever. 20 Have regard for your covenant, because haunts of violence fill the dark places of the land. 21 Do not let the oppressed retreat in disgrace; may the poor and needy praise your name.
22 Rise up, O God, and defend your cause; remember how fools mock you all day long. 23 Do not ignore the clamor of your adversaries, the uproar of your enemies, which rises continually. NIV

Drena Brown
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Posts : 60985
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