Genesis 2:3 – “And God blessed the Seventh day and made it holy, because on it he rested from all the work of creating that he had done.”

Filed Under (Bible study notes) by logos on 04-11-2010

After creating the world and all that inhabited the world, God rested from all the work of creating he had done.  Why did God rest?  Does God need rest to take a break from his work?  This answer to this question is determined by our understanding of rest.  What is our usual understanding of rest?  I suppose that we understand rest as a chance to take a break from all the work we have done throughout the week.  We look forward to the weekends where we can exclaim, “TGIF!” (Thank God it’s Friday).

It’s true that rest is required for the body to replenish it’s energy for another week of work.  Studies have shown that sleep helps the brain to re-organize neural pathways, which are fragmented during an overwhelming day of absorbing new information.  People who immerse themselves in one form of activity, e.g. video gaming, sports, studying, etc. fail to understand the importance that refreshing their mind or body results in improved performance.  Others who aren’t as demanding on themselves, diligently work others around the clock.  This highlights a common characteristic in people: Utmost patience for oneself, but equally impatient with others.  But God is different.  He is extremely patient with his creation.  He understands the importance of rest, and so imposes a day of rest for the sake of man.

However, the concept of rest does not stop on the physical level.  When the Bible speaks about rest, what does God want us to learn?

Isaiah 58:13 “If you turn back your foot from the Sabbath, from doing your pleasure on my holy day, and call the Sabbath a delight and the holy day of the LORD honorable; if you honor it, not going your own ways, or seeing your own pleasure, or talking idly;”

Resting is intended for us to stop thinking about ourselves, to ‘stop going your own ways, or seeing your own pleasure, or talking idly’.  For six days a week we toil and toil for our own sake, work for our own sake.  If resting on the seventh day simply means to take a break from work so that we can focus on doing the things that we desire for ourselves, then we have misunderstood God’s intention of rest.

God instituted a day of rest for a reason, and subsequently those who do not rest would face a drastic consequence.

Exodus 31:15 ‘For six days work may be done, but on the seventh day there is a sabbath of complete rest, holy to the LORD; whoever does any work on the sabbath day shall surely be put to death.

This day is made holy to the LORD.  The consequence of not resting is death.  Although it appears as a harsh punishment, but God is highlighting that the failure to rest from ‘always thinking of oneself’ will eventually lead to death.  A person who cares only for himself will eventually be disconnected from the community.  After all, who wants to continue to associate with a selfish person? To the community of God, that means to be as good as dead.  God’s intention is for us to enter into his rest, enter into a lifestyle where a person cares not for himself, but for those around him.  A community whose members love and care for each other will find that they do not have have to worry that no one will care for them.

To be Continued…

3 Comments Already, Leave Yours Too

Stephen on 23 November, 2010 at 12:14 am #

Very good!

Stephen on 23 November, 2010 at 12:27 am #

Besides that, I finally know why we cannot touch and eat the knowledge of good and evil, from my opinion, I believe that God firstly loves us so that he gave us a reminding. And then we will confusing, why we cannot touch and eat only this tree? We know that Satan was a fallen angel, and he wanted to be equal as God,and he was arrogant and liar, so god used angels to push him down to this world, and then suppose we eat that tree, and we know that only god knows everything the knowledge of good and evil, if we know everything like god, so we will equal to god and the result will be the same as Satan-death, fall. so this is the trick and lie to the Satan, we can see this is a tempatation and also the arrogance of the original sin, we know the original sins- arrogance and jealousy.God wants us to be humble like Jesus Christ, and we cannot understand his real meaning or plan if we are arrogant, so his words also include a dicipline for us and kind reminding, love for us, and he knows we might touch and involve, while we should and must remove it. Sometimes, when the tempatation comes, it looks very good, the feeling is great, while we should use the message of Bible (use the other two trees) to protect us.
God bless you. Thank you for your everything in the past.

logos on 23 December, 2010 at 3:35 pm #

Thanks Stephen for your contribution. I wasn’t even aware that you posted a comment onto the website because the comment didn’t get sent to my email address. I’ll have to look into that. I’ve been swamped these past few weeks so I haven’t had a chance to post any new notes from Bible study. Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year

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