The Sabbath Covenant
The Sabbath Covenant
Genesis 2:1-3, “Thus the heavens and the earth, and all the host of them, were finished. 2And on the seventh day Elohim ended His work which He had done, and He rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had done. 3Then Elohim blessed the seventh day and sanctified it [set it apart as a holy day], because in it He rested from all His work which Elohim had created and made.” NKJV
After six days of pretty heavy duty creative work, Yahweh set apart the seventh day of creation as a day of rest, for Himself. He blessed this seventh day and set it apart, like none of the other days of creation week. Adam’s first full day on earth was a Sabbath rest celebration of creation with his Creator, Yahweh!! Now get this deep into your spirit, Yahweh observed the FIRST SABBATH DAY on earth about 2,525 years BEFORE He gave the 4th Commandment to Moses on Mt. Sinai!!! Moses simply received the eternal Law of Sabbath from Yahweh’s own mouth in Exodus 20:8-11, “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. 9Six days you shall labor and do all your work, 10but the seventh day is the Sabbath of Yahweh your Mighty One. In it you shall do no work: you, nor your son, nor your daughter, nor your male servant, nor your female servant, nor your cattle, nor your stranger who is within your gates. 11For in six days Yahweh made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day. Therefore Yahweh blessed the Sabbath day and hallowed it.” Later, Yahweh etched these words onto the stone tablets, which Moses broke in response to the children of Israel’s golden calf rebellion. Later, Moses had to chisel out His own replacement tablets to carry the 10 commandments, or Decalogue.
In Exodus 20 through 23, Yahweh made a marriage covenant with Israel. He detailed many laws to live by, known as the Law of Moses. Then in chapter 24, we see Moses build an altar to Yahweh. Verses 3-8, “So Moses came and told the people all the words of Yahweh and all the judgments. And all the people answered with one voice and said, “All the words which Yahweh has said we will do.” 4And Moses wrote all the words of Yahweh. And he rose early in the morning, and built an altar at the foot of the mountain, and twelve pillars according to the twelve tribes of Israel. 5Then he sent young men of the children of Israel, who offered burnt offerings and sacrificed peace offerings of oxen to Yahweh. 6And Moses took half the blood and put it in basins, and half the blood he sprinkled on the altar. 7Then he took the Book of the Covenant and read in the hearing of the people. And they said, “All that Yahweh has said we will do, and be obedient.” 8And Moses took the blood, sprinkled it on the people, and said, “This is the blood of the covenant which Yahweh has made with you according to all these words.”” This marriage covenant was ratified with a blood sacrifice. This covenant included the Sabbath day and the 7-year sabbatical cycle of land rest and release of slaves. This was a done deal in which the children of Israel agreed to and promised to obey Yahweh.
Now let’s walk forward in the desert journey with the Israelites to Exodus chapter 31:12-17, “And Yahweh spoke to Moses, saying, 13“Speak also to the children of Israel, saying: ‘Surely My Sabbaths you shall keep, for it is a sign between Me and you throughout your generations, that you may know that I am Yahweh who sanctifies you. 14You shall keep the Sabbath, therefore, for it is holy to you. Everyone who profanes it shall surely be put to death; for whoever does any work on it, that person shall be cut off from among his people. 15Work shall be done for six days, but the seventh is the Sabbath of rest, holy to Yahweh. Whoever does any work on the Sabbath day, he shall surely be put to death. 16Therefore the children of Israel shall keep the Sabbath, to observe the Sabbath throughout their generations as a perpetual covenant. 17It is a sign between Me and the children of Israel forever; for in six days Yahweh made the heavens and the earth, and on the seventh day He rested and was refreshed.’””
Here, Yahweh expands our understanding of His Sabbath. Yahweh declares that the Sabbath is a sign between Him and the children of Israel, for all generations, forever. A sign identifies Yahweh’s people. The Sabbath sets us apart from the world, unto Yahweh. He elevates the Sabbath to its own perpetual, or eternal, covenant. This covenant is even set apart from the covenant ratified in Exodus 20-24. Violating Sabbath is also a capital crime, punishable by death, stated twice in this passage for emphasis. Because this covenant of Sabbath rest is an eternal covenant that is for us, it was NOT nailed to Yeshua’s cross with all the rules and rituals of Mosaic Law that were against us. Colossians 2:11-14, “In Him you were also circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, by putting off the body of the sins of the flesh, by the circumcision of Messiah, 12buried with Him in baptism, in which you also were raised with Him through faith in the working of Yahweh, who raised Him from the dead. 13And you, being dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, He has made alive together with Him, having forgiven you all trespasses, 14having wiped out the handwriting of requirements that was against us, which was contrary to us. And He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross.”
This covenant of Sabbath will be observed for the rest of eternity. Why? Because by observing it we acknowledge Who Yahweh is, our Creator. Sabbath Day is Yahweh’s first Feast Day, according to Leviticus 23:1-3, “And Yahweh spoke to Moses, saying, 2“Speak to the children of Israel, and say to them: ‘The feasts of Yahweh, which you shall proclaim to be holy convocations, these are My feasts.
3‘Six days shall work be done, but the seventh day is a Sabbath of solemn rest, a holy convocation. You shall do no work on it; it is the Sabbath of Yahweh in all your dwellings.”
By setting apart Yahweh’s Sabbath day as your very own Sabbath day, you will be set apart from the world. Heck, your friends, family, neighbors, co-workers and social community will set you apart. It is quite a distinctive sign. You want to be an individual? You want to be a holy individual? Be a Sabbath Keeper, not a Sabbath breaker. Yeshua kept Sabbath. Paul and ALL the Apostles kept Sabbath. The early FIRST church was virtually all Hebrew and kept Sabbath. True Christianity is a Hebrew religion, not a Babylonish Catholic or Babylonian daughter Protestant religion. Revelation 18:4-8, “And I heard another voice from heaven saying, “Come out of her, my people, lest you share in her sins, and lest you receive of her plagues. 5For her sins have reached to heaven, and Yahweh has remembered her iniquities. 6Render to her just as she rendered to you, and repay her double according to her works; in the cup which she has mixed, mix double for her. 7In the measure that she glorified herself and lived luxuriously, in the same measure give her torment and sorrow; for she says in her heart, ‘I sit as queen, and am no widow, and will not see sorrow.’ 8Therefore her plagues will come in one day—death and mourning and famine. And she will be utterly burned with fire, for strong is Yahweh Almighty who judges her.”
Yahweh is a Hebrew, Yeshua is a Hebrew, the Church of Yeshua is Hebrew. The Scriptures were written by Hebrews, to Hebrews, about Hebrews. Yeshua did not start a new religion, He fulfilled and expanded the Hebrew religion. Matthew 5:17-20, “Do not think that I came to destroy the Law or the Prophets. I did not come to destroy but to fulfill. 18For assuredly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, one jot or one tittle will by no means pass from the Torah till all is fulfilled. 19Whoever therefore breaks one of the least of these commandments [uh, like a Sabbath Breaker would], and teaches men so [a false prophet, see Deut. 13], shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever does and teaches them, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven. 20For I say to you, that unless your righteousness exceeds the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven.”
It’s time to exceed and excel in our religion. No wonder Jews and Muslims hate Yeshua and Christianity. We’ve fallen so far from the standard of Yahweh’s Word. Come on, let’s make them all jealous by getting back to Yahweh’s Way, especially on the Sabbath. Father, help us to be covenant keepers and not covenant breakers.
Gene Benjamin II
August 26, 2012 CE