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The Great Sabbath Welcome: Revisiting the Glories of God's Gift of Time

JoAnn Davidson
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The biblical Sabbath is a lot more than not Sunday! Seventh-day Adventists rightly emphasize which day is the Sabbath but sometimes have a reduced appreciation for its glorious nature. We believe that “God is love.” The Sabbath is a major proof of that, for “lovers” like to set times to be together. This seminar will review the riches of the biblical Sabbath, including practical ideas for enhancing its weekly observance. 


JoAnn Davidson

Teacher at Andrews University Theological Seminary




  • August 2, 2018
    3:30 PM


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Heavenly father we come to you this afternoon asking for your sweet spirit to bless our discussion and our thanking we thank you for the gift of the Sabbath and we've been so slow to appreciate its richness a place speak to us this afternoon Lord and warm our hearts a new and we pray this in Jesus' name amen. I'm a 4th generation 7th Day Adventist I've kept Sabbath all my life and I thought I knew everything there was to know about the Sabbath I knew the 4th commandment by memory and I knew I have a starts at sundown Friday night and sundown Saturday Sabbath evening and I was going to do this for God of it killed me because I love Jesus and this is Holy Day Well God real realized the sincerity of my heart but he wanted to give me an additional blessing in there in a very unusual means that were unusual right as a part of our theme he broke my heart open to his great gift to the staff and I will share that with you 1st because you'll see what a hard job it was for God to even do that my husband teaches Old Testament the seminary and you know that the basic tool of teaching Old Testament is the Hebrew language and he studied hard Hebrew to be able to translate Hebrew and he even when we go on trips he take his Hebrew vocabulary with him and study the review the vocabulary but he had a dream he heard that the nation of Israel had sponsored a Hebrew intensive Hebrew language school for Jewish people who live around the world and move back to Israel they don't know their mother tongue so they take government funds this old paan they call it and they guarantee you that a Jewish person can come there and 6 months be fluid in their mother tongue while they're living as they live in Israel and Dickon heard about that he just dream someday to be able to do this because I guess some of you I'm sure multilingual I guess that the true test that you know another language if you dream in that language and he wanted to be able to dream in Hebrew He just love the uber language so he was telling this to 1 of his colleagues and to listen ply for 6 months sabbatical and university doesn't do this but sometimes for special projects you fill in a bunch of papers now this will make you a better teacher and where you're going to go and all this wonderful stuff and they will grant you a special dispensation to do some special study project so I turned it in and I was cheering him on because I thought this would be a dream come true for him well took several weeks for this to be finalized and finally came in 1 day was just being me and he said honey you know I'm going to believe that Andrews is granted me this chance to go study the opon in Israel we're going to have such a good time and that stopped me dead in my. Because I had never thought that I was part of that dream. Because I know that Anders will give this special project but they don't give the money they give the time but not the money and I think in dollar signs and so I had to think quick I had to think quickly so I said honey this is a dream come true for you and I really I want you to do this but why don't why don't we do this let me take the kids and I'll go stay with my parents they never get to see their grandkids enough and you go and you just live there uninterrupted Hebrew and just fulfill your dream come true and this would just be so special I was really happy for him but I didn't want to call I didn't want to go because of the cost you know that. The Davidsons have but let's put it this way some people decorate their home with everything matching you know like Mediterranean style or Italian or early American or some you know and the Davidsons have always decorated in what I lovingly call early relative because we have a rather blend of nice furniture my parents and experience and have donated us together because we've spent much of our money for education and I'm not through begrudging that but that's just the way life turned out and so I had a dream that 1 day when we finished paying off all our educational challenges that I would buy a new couch and so see when Dick said we would go to Israel I thought there goes my couch right there was my couch and so I didn't tell him that that night I didn't tell him that and it was a couple years later after this happened I brought it up and I said remember that night when I didn't want to go to Israel he said yeah I remember and he said Well honey I got to the real reason why I didn't want to go and he says What was your reason and so I told my son I wanted a new couch and he said he laughed he said well I had a dream too I said you did. He said What would your dream is so I dream that someday we'd have a car with a floor. Because when we moved back to Michigan we drove an old car not oh I'm not complaining I'm just describing the situation you know how they put you have to do that Florida but we had to put salt on the roads with the snow in the ice and our old car had the floor and rusted out completely rusted out you could see the axles right and so my ingenious husband he figured out what to do said Honey I know the solution I'm going to get some plywood to make wooden floors to cover the holes and he said would doesn't rust and so said this is really cool he said because well to add a side line my husband is very good at fixing things he's very good and this was an old car new before this digital stuff and he could always make it running he said honey this is a perfect solution will put a wooden floor in and you know someday I'm not going to be able to fix this car some day it's actually going to wear out but never mind we'll pick up the floor and we'll walk at home you know. So we had a good laugh that night but the the 1st night when this came up it was no laughing matter for me I've got a 2 I did not want to go and so but I didn't go through all this with Dick and I just said so he said Well honey if if you don't think we should go now let's go another time because I don't want to go without you. And this is a part of the story I don't want to Mitt because I too quickly said OK let's go another time and my good natured husband just smiled that's sure we went to bed and he fell promptly to sleep and the Lord started working on my conscience. And I kept turning over and turning over and turning over and God was saying Joy And you said the wrong thing said the wrong thing and I said I was wrestling with God I said why do I need to go let him go I don't mind spending all that money for him I know I'm not begrudging that but I don't want to spend it take our kids I mean I don't need to go there and God just kept nudging me you know like a typical role they keep getting louder and louder and louder and after about 2 hours I realized that God wasn't gonna let me get out of this so I nudged Dick and I said well maybe we should go to Israel now gritting my teeth he said OK and he probably went back to sleep and my next level of maturing process began as I have you ever been to a place you know what God wants you to do but you don't want to do it that's where I was I knew exactly what God wanted me to do but it want to do it so I'm laying there and then I'm getting my T. is that OK I'm going to go I'm going to be a martyr to the cause because Dick deserves this and I just will get my new car. So it was my privilege didn't feel that all the papers applied and it was my privilege to go get the money the last bit of money in our savings to pay for our tickets of flight Israel and I'm smiling bravely to Dick and I'm gritting my teeth you know because I really did want dick to do this I didn't begrudge him doing this is a chance of a lifetime so we flew to Israel and it never will and if you bend as well you know you fly to television you have to take a taxi down to Jerusalem international airports in Tel Aviv so we're taking a taxi down the sure route and when we got to Israel to Jerusalem the taxi driver was taking us downtown Jerusalem around Independence Park because our 1 room apartment was just a block away from Independence Park and as we drove around the park the Jewish people were having a festival and there were the rabbis there with their Torah scrolls and moms and dads and kids and Grampa's and Graham is singing praise to God it was just it was just and chanting it was just absolutely and I had he been sleep the night before but I just I just came up and so we said to the taxi driver What's this he said all this is festival time we're celebrating Pentecost this this is when we celebrate God giving the law. And right away my 7th Day Adventist brain kicked in celebrate giving the law I mean we believe the law is permanent and it's the basis of morality and God gave it with his own voice of he wrote it in stone and it's important but I've never thought of praising God for the last just there but our Jewish brothers and sisters realize what a gift this the law is and they celebrate the giving of the law every year if you look at the S. hit him is that Adventist saying. We don't praise God for the law we have a few hymns about obeying the law yes and that's important but have you ever praised God for giving of the law you start reading the book of Psalms and it sounds different oh how I love your law it's my meditation all the day how many times have you thought about the law all day long. My way that just gripped me I said that to start my mind thinking we got to our room and Dick said let's go down and watch and I said well I don't want to get shot and so because my international thinking was a little slow and so it will all go down and you put the kids to bed so I did and 10 minutes later he came back here honey you've got to come you'd love this you'd love this so we went down and truly it was a extraordinary experience been there just extraordinary these precious people who preach know how to praise God for the glorious things he's done well the next day. Dick went down to the government office to pay the money for his classes and I'm smiling bravely but I'm gritting my teeth and he came back and he started going to class 8 hours a day Monday through Friday 8 hours a day nothing but he had a marvelous teacher she never said anything but in Hebrew and she'd point to things that she just knew how to teach and knew his vocabulary already and so he was just he was eat come home when he was just beaming and I'm saying thank you lord that it can be here but I don't need to be here and so after about 22 weeks he started his Jewish folk songs and teaching us how to bargain because in the Middle East even if there's a price on something you bargain and so I see nodding his head and so he taught us how to count in a bargain it was that that was fun I have to admit it we fooled them all out and we say how much is this and they'd say we bargain and they think we could really understand when they babble and babble not just nod my head I don't know what they were saying well anyway after 22 months of class it was 6 months about 2 naff months class Dick came home 1 day and he said you know there there were 12 students in each section and he said the students in my section learned that we've got to quit with each other and that we come from America but we keep Shabat in America too and so they said you must come and we will celebrate Shabat together just writing it come to our home and fix it don't you think we got a goal Well again my 7th Day Adventist smugness kicked in and I'm thinking well isn't this nice I'm a Sabbath keeper what can a Jewish person teach me about the Sabbath you know I've been keeping Sabbath my family for 4 generations I've never missed a Sabbath I know the 4th Commandment by memory I know when it starts I know it it ends I know how to do this for God because I love God and so I said Sure let's go you know we feel very smug inside to know that we don't really need to do this but let's be nice you know. And so he went and that very 1st Friday night to walk into these little homes these little you know because in this world you can't have on a house everybody lives in an apartment because there's no private land ownership because it's a socialist country and these these people live in little tiny apartments that 1 time we visited in the home of the Supreme Court justice on the Israeli Supreme Court and he lives in an apartment like our students live on campus at Qana B. apartment there's no walls showing just floor to ceiling books that separate windows precious people precious people anyway that we got into this home and there's this table and they're living in the dining room things all 1 room and they had a beautiful tablecloth a silver and gold threads on it and it will have an end and crystal goblets and sterling silver and gold fresh flowers and so all this sputum. What to spend who somebody special coming for supper. So we sat down and ate and they asked us all about keeping Shabat in America and I learned something we we don't present Shabat positively because they knew that we kept Sabbath they say For you want to begin easy question sundown Oh they said no it's much better than that and they said Sabbath starts coming in all Friday afternoon and by sundown It's all here they they look forward to the Sabbath you know what but before this I What time does a sunset here in Florida right now 8 something 830 so 829 you're finishing the vacuuming you shove the vacuum cleaner in the door slam the door shut it's a 37 start you fall down on the floor but boy you guarded the edges of the Sabbath. But the Jewish people anticipate the Sabbath all week I saw a beautiful poster in a store and it's there's a cat hanging from a branch of a tree and looking scared and underneath it says Hang in there Sabbath is coming. Everything they do reminds them of the wonder of the Sabbath you know in Israel you buy a calendar none of the other days of the week have a name only say Shabat you know how they number their days 6 days until Sabbath 5 days until Sabbath 4 days until Sabbath 32 and then finally Sabbath has a name it was just it was a whole new experience for you Well well after week we had a wonderful meal on there and they said for you live the way they said we got to talking about what you do and don't do on Sabbath and dicks of we you know you can't work on the Sabbath and they said oh it's much better than that you know we say you can't work on Sabbath and they say I don't have to work on Sabbath see they they do the same things we do but they have that they see the blessing there and not a restriction in a legal istic restriction they see what God is trying to do to bless us so that after supper we had some beautiful family traditions with their family it was just it and I got home and I remember thinking oh that's pretty nice that family had some neat ideas that was pretty nice Well couple weeks later another 1 of Dick's students had heard that we'd gone to someone else's house he said please come to our house celebrate shop so we went and again we found this precious precious people loving the Sabbath and afterwards having a beautiful family tradition we did this about 3 or 4 times a different Dick students and then I have to tell you after about the 4th time I remember coming home to our little apartment and falling down on the floor and weeping. Because I and I prayed something like this I said Lord I fought you to come here I did want to come here but now I realize what you were trying to give me a blessing and you want to open the self-satisfied smug 7th Day Adventists heart to show her thank you very much Jesus still in the for what you're doing but I really want to give you the Sabbath this happened something I want to do for you it's not what you do for me see we like to say God is love and I think Sabbath is the greatest proof of that because lovers like to set special times to be together and that's what God has done with the Sabbath but we've been so embedded in my at least in my thinking of we've got to get the right day and that's true but why because the great God of heaven who loves his family wants to have a time with us every week every week special time and and but the Jewish people they they did the same things we do but they do it for different motive not to show God how good we are see God did I do good did I do good I didn't do that and I did this as 1 Jewish writer put it if all you think about on the Sabbath is what you should or should not do you've never entered the joy of the Sabbath and another Jewish writer wrote it's not that this jews keep the Sabbath it's a Sabbath that keeps the Jews Well every Friday night is the Sabbath begins the family gathers together and they celebrate in a beautiful way you know Sabbath is all and family is all we have left of the Garden of Eden it's all we have left so we don't the Sabbath is no more Jewish than marriage if you're saying the Sabbath is yours and you have to say marriage is Jewish and furthermore Sabbath comes it's not we don't earn it it comes like salvation it's a gift that comes to us from God nothing we can do to earn it but he just gives it to us every week week every. They started breaking through my brain as a 4th generation 7th they have a star break into my brain I would do the same things but I finally see that I wasn't doing this to show God how good I am and how be the end I am because I don't want to miss a minute of this special $24.00 hours to what I missed a minute well right at sundown a Jewish family gathers and these are aged traditions or probably Jesus did there's these they tails of thousands of years old and the family gathers around and right at sundown the mother lights the Sabbath candles and I don't have fire permission in here so we will like them but there are several ways they do this some families like to candles and that stands for the 2 different versions of the Sabbath commandment the 1 in Exodus 21 it talks about God creating and then in Deuteronomy 5 when Moses preaches on the 10 commandments he talks about God bringing us bringing Israel salvation from slavery and so you know our Smart Western critics say that Moses was got it wrong you know there's a contradiction in the Bible and so I asked what addicts friends I said do you see a contradiction there they say oh no. He said God Both times created something out of nothing when he made the Sabbath he created something out of nothing and when he saved Israel out of slavery and made the mist people he made his people something out of nothing and he said so as both of these versions of the commands are showing God's great creative power so some families will light 2 candles as a Sabbath begins others will light the 7 candles now you know there's the 9 branch candlestick It's not that that's for Hanukkah and this is that called the Temple mineral that has like a 7 candles in the Sabbath candles in the middle middle because they say the Sabbath candle she has a slight both ways from Wednesday to Sabbath the light of the oncoming Sabbath brightens your week and then after you leave the Sabbath the light of the pass out of brightens your days up until Tuesday and then by Wednesday the new Sabbath is going to brighten your day so everything is based around the Sabbath some will light 7 candles other family the when we visited with the Supreme Court justice lit a candle for every member of the family and their grandkids even though they're all around the world so they had about $25.00 candles lit that night and then after they have their Sabbath meal then they call their kids and say I just let your Sabbath candle happy Sabbath so there's many ways of doing it but important thing is they light candles and so I asked them I said How how do you think of lighting candles for to start the Sabbath and they said all and they gave us many different traditions. These are 2 of my favorite 1 of them was you know that you can have 1 kid everybody has a candle and everybody 1 candle can light everybody's candle review done that you know and the whole room can be lit from 1 candle and when you're done the original candle is as bright as ever right and they say just so God has been blessing the Sabbath for thousands of years and the blessing is just as bright as ever another family another family told us they said well you know that when God created during creation week the very 1st thing he created on day 1 was light and every Sabbath is a new creation so we begin with light and so they they light candles and the mother prays a prayer over her family just as the Sabbath begins and I know this is Thursday but let's just pretend we're family and I love to pray this prayer over you it is a post beautiful prayer let's pray pretend the candles are lit. Oh god of your people Israel you are holy and you have made the Sabbath and the children of Israel holy and you have called upon us to honor the Sabbath with light with joy and with peace as a king and queen give love to 1 another as a bride and her bridegroom and so we have kindled these lights for the love of the Sabbath day Almighty God grant me and all my loved ones a trance to truly rest on the Sabbath Day May the light from the candles drive out from among us the spirit of anger and the spirit of harm send your blessings to my children that they may walk in the ways of your Torah your light and may you ever be their God and mine Oh Lord my Creator and my reading are Amen. Now the candles Sabbath candles in Israel are about this long they've figured out how long it will take for a candle to be lit at Sabbath I mean Friday night and to burn out before they go to bed so they don't even have to work to blow out the candles they just blurt burn out laughter the candles are lit the mother praises prayer the next thing that is really precious the husband blesses his wife every Friday night is Sabbath begins the husband reads or sings to her from a song of songs or Proverbs 31 that beautiful passage talking about a woman of strength who can fart prices far above rubies and some of the husbands have made songs of these and others read them to a beautiful beautiful picture and it's fun it was fun to watch in those Jewish homes as Mom and Dad expressed affection for each other to watch these kids look up at their mom and dad and feel so safe and their parents love beautiful he tells us why he reads her for this passage which everyone and tells her you know you are just wonderful thank you for all you do for our kids and for me and making this home such a special place it's a beautiful time every Sabbath the Sabbath begins family ties are restored after the husband blesses his wife the wife blesses her husband and she reads to him Psalm $112.00 talks there about a no man who provides for his family's known for his wisdom and takes care of the needy and the earth is a beautiful passage and she tells her husband honey you're just a rock thank you for all you do for me I feel so safe in your love thank you for what you do for your for your family is a beautiful thing is fun to watch kids look at that to watch their mom and dad love each other Friday night is Sabbath begins you know that Friday was Adam and Eve's 1st day may remember that. They remember that and so they say that this is reminding them of the perfect love that God started in their hearts and so they repeat that every Friday as Sabbath begins and that knee after the husband blesses his wife and the wife blesses her husband the dad blesses the kids and I saw this done several ways the dad if takes all kids in his arms to the several kids in his arms or he goes to each 1 separately and puts his hands on their shoulders and prays a personal prayer for them individually praying that they will grow up to be noble and why true in the ways of God is just marvelous just marvelous and this I picked up gotta tell you I peeked and this 1 dad had 4 kids in his arms and he was praying over them and the kids were leaning their head against dad and just feel and so good to be blessed by Paul it was just beautiful they were loving it and it was a precious benediction his Sabbath began. Now if there's no children of course you don't do that and also if the father cast to be gone then the mother can bless the children and my husband after we started doing this tried very hard to be home Friday night at sundown but 1 Friday night he had to be gone when our son was about 8 years old and so I did the blessing that night and I took my son in this arm and my daughter in this arm and I was praying a prayer over them and I noticed my son was very restless and the minute I said amen he went you're not as good as dead. But you know that taught me there's nothing like the blessing of a heavenly father on Friday night and that's what Sabbath is all about that's what it's about it's about what we do for God is what God wants to do for us and that's what we put aside everything so that we can receive this great blessing of the Sabbath the great blessing of time you know that of all the pagan religions around Israel. Hittites the Acadians of Phyllis STEIN They all had their creation stories and they all had all their ideas but not 1 of their gods ever gave them the gift of time never this is totally unique to the Hebrew religion not only that it comes once a week the Jewish writers say that the Sabbath is the birthday of the world not my age I don't want to birthday even every year I told it let's celebrate it every 5 years now that's plenty but the Jewish people say that God love this planet and his creation so much he didn't want to wait even a whole year to celebrate so he celebrates it every week with the Sabbath giving us a gift of time Issel 1st thing God made holy The 1st thing was time we can't even touch time we can't go backwards or forwards we can we can only go forwards look at sideways or backwards but God has control told control of time and he took those 1st 7 days of creation we can bend it into we can he punctuates it with the Sabbath so that will never forget that's where the 4th Commandment starts remember God says I don't want you ever to forget come close to me listen to my heart beat this into my heart and I I finally That's why I had to finally pray that prayer I thought I knew all there was to know about the Sabbath and I finally started realizing no I didn't know anything about this what Sabbath God really wanted it to be I'm sure God accepted my Evers' I was glad I knew the right day and all of that but sadly there's a lot more than not Sunday it's a big deal and I'm sometimes wondering if we would learn how to present it for the all the richness it is that it would people would want it they would want it rather have it just say no you can't do this and you can't do this you can't do this you can't do this it and said opening their eyes to see what a wonderful thing it is they would want it to well after all these wonderful blessings they have a special meal Now that's not a standard. Menu you can do whatever you want but what they do is so fun they say all during the rest of the week when you eat your evening meal you have to hurry on to get something else done right maybe you don't but I do but what they do is they'll have simple food like maybe they'll have some fruit and then they'll sing a Sabbath him and then they'll bring out maybe some bread and some some hummus and then we'll eat a little bit and then we sing a Sabbath him and then they then the baby bring out some soup or some salad nothing rich but it meant that they so they draw out the meal they said this is to make a slow down make a slow down and remind us that we don't have to hurry now we can just sing and enjoy the presence of our creator that's what it's all. Well that's why I had to pray to God forgive me because he was wanting me to see something well. Dick students also his colleagues in his class also said you must come we when we finish about you must come and fix it OK Well again we didn't know what to do but we we were with this time we were more police I was more intentional realize I might actually learn something I realize now that when I went to Israel I was prejudiced against the Jewish people it's easier to be is an advantage because after all they killed Jesus you know but if you read the biblical record carefully it wasn't the Jewish people that killed him it was the religious leaders and that's a really hit on the head are 70 avenues to religious leaders would we be misrepresenting Jesus and misrepresenting the Sabbath just like they were in Jesus' day and I realized I had to realize I could learn about the Sabbath they've been keeping the Sabbath for thousands of years and they still love it and I know there are some legal istic Jewish people I know that there are some legal Issac Adventists and I know there are some very liberal Jewish people and I those are there is very similar lad minister but God put us in contact with the genuinely sincere precious Jewish people open my heart to the Sabbath open my heart. I remember when we started lighting candles John our son was just under 1 year old and he couldn't talk very much but he we've been lighting candles for 3 weeks and I had him on my hip 1 Friday and I was I was cleaning you know I become a 1 hour mother and I had him on my hip and so I said John tonight is going to be Sabbath and he couldn't talk it but he went who he knew he knew a blow candles he knew of a candle he would he would have candles Well anyway after we saw how they started the Sabbath they invited us to finish the Sabbath with them and again it's a beautiful thing is just beautiful they have what is called a Hovda last ceremony when they say they separate the sacred from the secular and they have several steps they light a 4 wick to candle and I didn't bring 1 I should have but the 1 we have is almost burned down and I've got to get a new 1 so it's about a foot long and it's 4 strands of wax about the size of a pencil and they with the wear I mean heat the wax and they braided together so it's braided as a braided forward kind of like our multi-way cattles are usually round with a lot of Wicks but the Hebrew ones are just as braided together in a braid is a very important thing is it reminds him of all the blessings that are woven together in fact the whole abroad you can only get on Friday night is braided bridge because it's remind them of all the braids of blessings that will be woven together in this apple anyway they have this hall of the law candle they light it. And at the end I said will you lit candles to begin and now you let candles to begin to and is that right and they said yes we want to envelop the Sabbath with light to come to surround the Sabbath with light and I thought that was lovely then they take a crystal goblet and set it in a saucer and very elegantly fill the saucer and fill the goblet with grape juice and slowly fills up the cup and overflows and till the saucer is filled and it takes take several minutes so they don't spill anything is just very elegant I saw what does that mean and they said that is to remind you that this Sabbath this is comes at the close of this that have that your blessings of overflowed is just overflow to remind you. And so just whatever they do it is just really marvelous and 1 more thing they passed around a spice box maybe some of you know this they those as a box that can be made out of stained glass or pewter or wood or whatever it is no standard material and then they put a fragrant Popery in it and that's not not a standard it's something your family likes to smell and so as the sun's going down they pass around the spice box everybody takes a whiff Now that was quaint to me so I knew I had to ask I said cannot Can I ask what that means and they said oh yes that is to make sure that before the Sabbath closes all your senses have been blessed even your sense of smell now that really triggered my thinking because see for admin is Sabbath is very cerebral and mental and legal you know all the tax you do it right and but the and they do they use the same tax we do they do but they but they say the Sabbath has to be a blessing and so they they think of ways to make sure all your senses are blessed before the Sabbath because that Jesus doesn't just talk to your mind he wants to bless you. So Dick and I start playing with that sense of the sense of smell in the sense of taste go really good together so I I I learn from them that they have on Friday nights have with their families favorite food favorite dishes now I I got a master's in nutrition and I really interested in how food affects our health and all the things and so I have fun with it I really enjoy it and so when I cook with the kids were growing up I would talk about what's in this guess what's in this and 1 day my son said Mother Can we just eat so I knew I was overdoing it so but I had but by then you know what your family like a Friday afternoon when they come in they're smelling their favorite food and have you noticed how food tastes better on Sabbath food tastes better on tap you can cook the same food during the week and it's good but wait did serve it on Sabbath your taste buds are high and they come on the Sabbath Friday afternoon the House is spelled with their favorite food and that's part of the blessing of the Sabbath and then there's a sense of sight and well here's another time I have to make a confession my house is not always spotlessly clean I don't leave and in shame. In fact I have a magnet on my refrigerator that says. You can eat off my floor any time there are crumbs everywhere. And my dear husband puts up with me but Friday is different right already the bathroom mirrors get polished and the floor gets mopped and we even have clean sheets I love clean sheets if I if I wasn't an ecologist I would change my sheets every night I loved the line dried sheets smell like the sunshine and that Christmas you know but least on Sabbath I get that and so so even our sense of touch is blessed. And we we develop back rubs for the sense of touch too when our kids are growing up Dick would do 1 and I would do the other would rub backs and we'd talk and when they were little they wanted a story and when they were an academy they want to talk about boys and girls when they were in college you want to talk about things they were learning and we did back robes and I remember once they were in the cademy it was Christmas and and they had the Christmas program and afterwards they asked Day by and help put away all the music in the stands to get Church ready so we stayed by afterwards and on the way home our daughter said it's late isn't it Mom and I said well yeah it really is just was are time for back rubs and I says of course. Somehow made a difference the sense of touch they deserve a back rub every night but I have time and they don't have time but Friday night I don't have to work and I have time to be a blessing to my children sense of touch the sense of sight the Jewish people mention my house of finally clean and forgot to mention they always have fresh flowers on Sabbath always a fresh flowers and I can't say that that's the best way to do it but I had 1 mother tell me that she's a single mom and she couldn't afford fresh flowers every day every Sabbath so she bought a pretty book A of silk flowers and she puts it away during the week and brings it out for Sabbath to remind her of the beauty of the Sabbath that whatever whatever it is whatever it takes something to make you remind you of how wonderful the Sabbath is now I'm not saying that this is the only way to start the Sabbath I what I was giving a testimony of what God used to open my heart to the Sabbath being a lot more than what I thought it was I want you to also reckons to consider that the Sabbath is inclusive of all creation all creation Remember remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy who is all included in the blessing. You nor your son or your daughter your manservant know your major nor the animals or the stranger that was in your gate God includes the animals in the Sabbath blessing it's that expansive and you start thinking of how often God thought about the animals and today most people just think about animals is how they taste but God really cares about creation remember he no Noah's flood all the stars were creation we could so turn to Genesis 1 be got your bible go to day 5 Genesis want to read about day 5. OK let's pick it up in verse 20 then God said Let the waters abound with abundance of living creatures and the birds are above the air above this or above the firmament and God created the sea creatures that exist in the waters abounded according to their kind and then it says And God said to them it is good and then God tells them Be fruitful and multiply Who is he talking to there were no humans around yet God talking to the animals I don't know how or what he did but God said be fruitful and multiply only gave us that blessing on day 6 gave the same blessing to the animals it comes to Noah's Ark God includes the animals and they were obedient to the call the angel led them in humans no humans would bother to it didn't they thought it was crazy but the animals obeyed they come out of the Ark and Jet Genesis Chapter 9 if you read that covenant statement in Genesis 9 God says 4 times in Genesis 9 I am making this covenant with you and with every animal with you on the ark and he names all the kinds of animals that are on the ark and he says it 4 times the clues covenant God has a covenant with all of us you know the writer of the doxology thought of that. Praise God from whom all blessings flow praise him all creatures here below and when you sing it you just think of all of us nice humans singing praises ago but you know the animals are praising God It's just our ears are so degraded by sin that we can't hear it and we forget that God receives praise from all His creatures you find it all through the book of Psalms turned us on 48 of you of some 48 this great choir notice all the people are not all the beings that are singing praise to God In Psalm 148 amazing passage everything that has breath praises God according to this passage and I should say that Birt review birders you read about these are not solid just that have recorded bird calls and they all we hear is the sweet little chirps and they slow them way down and they're spinning very intricate melodies and they don't repeat themselves for 45 minutes but our ears cannot hear all these pitches and so all we are is the sweet little chirps and think Aren't they cute but they're very highly intelligent well it's me this choir 1st someone 48 praise the Lord in the heavens the heights the the moon the star of the earth the 1st things are in the heavens let them praise the name of the Lord and let's go down to verse 7 praise the Lord from the earth the great sea creatures fire hail snow cloud stormy winds. I need my glasses on all of the mountains and hills and fruitful trees and all Cedars beasts and Kalak creeping things of fish and fowl kings and that list all the people and then there we come last on the list of the squire we come last all these creatures are praising God All of them and speaking of God speaking to the animals 1st King 17 remember when he lied after Mount Carmel is fleeing from just a bell and God says 1st thing 70 says go live by Brook Chair think it your water there and I have commanded the Ravens to feed you all. God cometh God talking to the animals and you know people used to think that monkeys were the smartest creatures next to humans and now you read the book the wiseguys of the avian world Reva's and crows are smarter than monkeys and that's why God commanded them to feed Alija go and it said God commands God says I commanded the Ravens and the next verses of the Ravens came and fed a lie just like they were told so the Sabbath is big and includes all creation all creation praising God and as we are allowing different species of animals to die off through our cruelty we're muting God's praise So anyway I started asking our Jewish brothers and sisters when we were there in Israel I said I need to ask you some questions because I've been a Sabbath keeper all my life and I I didn't think of it this way and I just help me explain understand I said How did you think of of having having such a beautiful table and having such a festive mood for Sabbath I've always thought Sabbath or something you've got to be very careful and and not you know not to violate anything and yet you make it such a festive celebration and they say well that's in the Bible that's a tour they call this and Torah and I said well how is how do you see that and they said Well well turn to job and I said Job I said nobody reads the book of Job except when they want to understand suffering and they said no no God's longest speech in the Bible is in the Book of Job and and Joel was suffering indeed he really was but God finally comes and talks a job and God's longest speech in the entire Bible both the old New Testament is in this book and it starts when Job Chapter 38 and when God comes to job he doesn't talk to him about the problem that job is suffering in job was suffering terrible losing his family his house everything you own and covered head to foot with boils Have you ever had 1 boil their painful job couldn't lay down he could stand up he couldn't sit I was covered head to foot with boils. And God comes to him and doesn't explain it he talks about creation and this is just amazing to me Let's read this where were you verse 4 where were you when I lay the foundation of the earth tell me if you have understanding who determine this measurement Surely you know who stretched the line upon it to what were its foundations fastened now you see got sense of humor there where are the foundations of the earth fashioned fastened I should say where is this what what foundation are we fastened to were spinning ball don't you member learning that in geography class I remember being in grade school and saying the teacher was saying we're just hanging in space I'm just going around and around and around and I'm a member going home that night praying Dear Jesus don't let go because I was fraid. There's no reason why we still be here but gods it tells you who who who Or did I fasten the foundations Surely you know who laid the cornerstone and then God gives the mood of creation he said when all the morning star saying together and all the sons of God shouted for joy when God was creating Can you just see it day 1 God did this and God said this is good and then the universe is wow the 2nd god create something he said this is good and the universe is Wow And for 7 days they are just shouting for joy at the wonders of creation and see this Sabbath gives us a chance to do this again to be reminded of the great creator and what he did and that's why God gave us the Sabbath so he never forget to shout for joy for what he started once a year would be enough once a month when he be enough but every 7 days we can chip praise God for the creator Nella White talks about this and she said if we will go out into creation and enjoy the works of God's hand he works. With some if we do this we'll sometimes feel the Presence of The Creator with us in that beautiful we need to take time we don't have time to do it during the week don't have time but Sabbath gives us time to rejoin the creator have this time so I said OK because I learned that the Jewish people would know I wanted to spend my life savings on a new couch they'll spend their life savings on their Sabbath issues and that's why Friday night and Sabbath they sit with sterling silver china crystal and table cloth with silver and gold 3 heads to remind them of the royal nature of this day is just is just impressive 1 Jewish writer calls the Sabbath a palace in time now I don't live in a palace but I have ever seen that documentary of Buckingham Palace and Queen Elizabeth I could get used to that it would be really nice but every Sabbath got a vice as to his palace in time that means wherever we are we can enter God's palace of time and that beautiful that was a precious thought to me and the other thing they taught us was. I remember said I have a hard 7 ticks and they said no there's no hearts have a ticks and I said yes there is a Hearts have a text and they so what is the Hearts have to take a few nice that Isaiah 58 and I think this is the text that has tripped up tripped up me and more 7 they haven't said anything else about our understanding of the Sabbath and I'm going to read it with a tone of voice that I always understood it before I went to Israel. It's like God talking no gods in heaven if you turn away your foot from the Sabbath from doing your pleasure on my holy day and that's how I felt it all had to be careful got to be careful and they said is that what your bible says this is that what your bible said then use the word Bibles that way to your Torah says it yes they that you know what they said they said in English is not so good. His That's why it's a hard text for you because they read it this way and I wrote it in there so that I would remember if you turn away your foot from your Sabbath time pursuing your daily work on my holy day and if you read the 1st part of Isaiah 58 is talking about your daily work of your employment where you earn your salary and so the that word pleasure is talking about your normal work now see the Sabbath commandment commands us to work 6 days and God never intended that to be a curse he that was to be a blessing to our work is to be a blessing to us and Blessed are the people whose job matches their joy some people go through life and don't enjoy anything let alone their work let alone the Sabbath but bless it or that people love their work and then Sabbath they praise God but so so that they talk about this verse if you turn away your foot from the Sabbath and doing your daily work your employment on my holy day because some people can't stop work is too hard you know you know I am a teacher and I know that sometimes I'm reading on Friday night and I'm thinking this would be a good thing to put in my class this is really neat I've got to remember I'm just going to feed my soul on fire I can't I don't have to grade papers no I don't have to prepare for classes either I just reste or my soul in the Lord that's what it's all about and I have to be careful and other people can't stop I remember 1 Sabbath I was walking to synagogue when we were in Jerusalem there's over 400 synagogues in Jerusalem and I would go to a different 1 every Sabbath just to see how the Jewish people kept Sabbath and I remember walking catching up with this man because no 1 drives on Sabbath this all walking that the Arabs and so I was walking and caught up and we were walking to the synagogue and I and I I told him I was from America and I was visiting this in a god and he said all good he said you like my country and I said Yes I like your country needs a good and I said Can I ask you 1 question and he said sure and I said I notice when I go to synagogue that you don't take up offerings. And I said and he said you're right and I said why is that and he said I don't know why but I'll tell you I'm glad he says I am a business man and I'm thinking money all week long all week long I've got how to make my business work and he said and then when I put my hands in my pocket during the week I touch money and that's all I can think about it can do this I can do this he said sadly they don't carry money so I can put my hands in my pocket and be relieved of my business and it does nothing to trigger me about my work my daily work and that help me to understand this this text that's what is talking about your daily work and it's good to work hard is good there's nothing wrong with working hard and but not on Sabbath you don't have to work on Sabbath and then that my friend said and you never read the next line and call the Sabbath the delight Oh whoever gets there my husband tells me there's 11 words in Hebrew that translated delight 11 and each 1 increases the intensity of the delight we have 1 word in English 1 word and so it depends on how you say the word to make it well that was a delight or the wall that was a delight you know you do it that way but this word it's in the Hebrew Bible this particular word for Delight is only used in the Hebrew Bible for kings and queens and their palaces. So they say they translate and call the Sabbath the royal delight and that's where that palace in time comes from and I took a gold pen and drew a little golden crown over that so I never ever forget it ever get such a blessing such a place. Then they said they told me he said you know that God created when God created he created in a poem No I said I didn't know that he said Yes God didn't just throw things together now biologists have told us that God had to create these things in this order there could not be life but they said no it's much better than that God created things to make it beautiful. And you take the 1st 3 days and God creates different habitats the light the air and the water and the land on the last 3 days he fills up those habitats and makes him full and then he's still not done on the 7th day there's more verbs about the sabbath than any other verb and the other the days of the week God said Let there be and there wasn't it was but on the Sabbath God blessed it he made it holy That's right and those 3 verbs are picked up and put in the 4th commandment the very same words that God uses in the 4th commandment Now what does it mean when God blesses something don't get me a dictionary definition of what is a he the Hebrew understanding of blessing member. Happy S. And when God blessed had his womb what happened she could conceive so a blessing is God's enabling something to accomplish what is supposed to accomplish so God bless the Sabbath so it can accomplish what God wants it took office and that should make us very happy Rob what does it mean when God makes something holy How does God make something holy let's put it there how does God make something holy ha he declares it and is by his presence remember when God dedicated the century what did he do he filled it with his presence and they couldn't even come near because it was so glorious and member the burning bush in the wilderness most us saw this burning bush and he I'm sure Moses had built a number of camp fires in the wilderness but he saw this burning bush that wasn't burning up so he goes there and God What does God tell him take off your shoes as well about why was it holy ground because God is in that fire as well and God says he's going to make the Sabbath holy What is it me his presence is going to fill this day now God bless isn't is with us every day but Ellen White says and desire of ages that Sabbath God pours out his choicest blessings that was a new thought for me I thought Sabbath was something I did for God. And I knew all that tax and I knew all the right ways to do it but I never let God bless me I was always trying to show God how good I was and how lucky he was that I was a 7th Day Adventist instead of being restored and renewed I find it fascinating that there's a lot of books coming out now about the Sabbath from other Christians lots of 1 of them is called 267 and set I mean 20237 instead of 247 No I'm going to get it right 24620 What is 82470246 there that the title is 246 but course they always talk about Sunday but what the interesting thing to me is that they see what a royal gift the Sabbath is and they're trying to encourage their Sunday keepers to keep this day and not let it go we should have been putting books out like this for the last 100 years why are people coming to us and asking us about the. Why our day God gave us the chance to be the light on the a member but God told Abraham I want you to be a blessing I want you to be a blessing Well they say what doesn't say kept the Sabbath but it does because when God renew the covenant with Isaac and I and Genesis 26 he says I'm redoing the covenant with you because your father kept all my commandments and my statutes and my laws so you know the Sabbath Abraham kept the Sabbath and God told Abraham I want you to be a blessing or not the whole world and that's what we were supposed to be we were supposed to be the blessing and share the glory of the Sabbath to be a blessing in this world but instead least in my own life I'm just starting to realize this I'm not I'm not saying that this is the only way to keep the Sabbath but I'm saying that this is what God used to open my heart to the glories of this day Oh Heavenly Father please forgive us smart 7th Day Adventists for being so slow to appreciate your great gift of time and how you want to be close to us. And a Sabbath is coming soon large in its bright light is lightning these days as we approach it and this is going to be a high sabbath here day as I please pour out your spirit restore us and renew us take away our crippled missive sand and help us walk a new in the warmth of your great heart be thank you dear Jesus on. This video was produced by audio verse 40 S Abbot is layman's services and industry. If you would like to learn more about. Please. Or if you like this for free. Leave as a. Verse.


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