God’s Sabbath Principle and Provision for Obedience
February 8 Bible Reading: Leviticus Chapters 25-27
In Leviticus 25:1-22, we read about God’s Sabbath principle, which occurred every seventh day of the week and every seventh year in the life of the Israelites. “…in the seventh year there shall be a Sabbath of solemn rest for the land, a Sabbath to the Lord. You shall neither sow your field nor prune your vineyard” (Lev 25:4).
We note that Sabbath was instituted by God (Gen 2:3), blessed by God (Exodus 20:11) and sanctified by God (Exodus 31:15). It was made for the Israelites (Mark 2:27) as a sign of the covenant with God (Exodus 31:13, 17), and they were commanded to keep it and sanctify it (Ex 20:8; Lev 19:3, 30). During the Sabbath everyone (including servants and cattle) were allowed to rest (Exodus 20:10; Deut 5:14), and no work was allowed to be done during Sabbath (Lev 23:3).
This was a type of the heavenly rest (Heb 4:4, 9) for worship (Ezek 46:3; Acts 16:13), scripture reading (Acts 13:27; 15:21), and preaching of God's word (Acts 13:14-15, 44; 17:2; 18:4). Even though Jesus was the Lord of Sabbath (Mark 2:28), He was accustomed to observe it (Luke 4:16) and taught others on this day (Luke 4:31; 6:6). The New Testament Church observed it on the first day of the week (Acts 20:7; 1 Cor. 16:2), as it was commanded to be a perpetual observance (Exodus 31:16-17; Matt 5:17-18).God’s Sabbath principle for us is to cease from our daily work activities one day per week and offer it to God for worship, Bible meditation, Bible Study, prayer, fasting and fellowship with the saints of God. As in the Old Testament where God promised to provide for the daily needs of the Israelites for observing the Sabbath (see Leviticus 25:20-22), God will provide for all our basic needs if we dedicate one day a week to Him and His kingdom. “But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things (what to eat, drink, wear, etc.) shall be added to you” (Matt 6:33).