Read Deuteronomy 5:12-15.
How does the emphasis of the Sabbath commandment here differ from Exodus 20:8-11?
Here Moses reminds the Israelites that they should keep the Sabbath, and he states that they should do this because God delivered them from Egypt. The texts say nothing about the six days of Creation or about the Sabbath being God’s rest. Instead, the emphasis here is on Salvation, on deliverance, on Redemption, in this case the redemption from Egypt, a symbol of the true Redemption we have in Jesus (see 1 Cor. 10:1-3).
In other words, there is no conflict between the texts, no justification for trying to use one passage to deny the truth of the other. Moses was showing the people that they belong to the Lord, first by Creation, and then by redemption.
The passages that mention sanctification remind us that only God can make us holy. Only the Creator can create a new heart within us.
Consider, then, three reasons given for Sabbath observance and how they are related. We observe the Sabbath on the seventh day in recognition of the fact that God created in six days and rested on the seventh. We also observe the Sabbath on the seventh day because God is the one who redeemed us, saved us in Christ. And also He is the One who sanctifies us, which comes only from the creative power of God, as well (see Ps. 51:10, 2 Cor. 5:17).
Theories, therefore, that deny the six-day Creation tend to diminish God’s grace and magnify the value of our own efforts to be good enough to be saved. The Creation story reminds us of our total dependence on grace and the substitutionary sacrifice of Christ in our place.
Dwell on the fact that we are as dependent upon God for Redemption as we are for existence (after all, how much say did you have in your own birth?). How can the Sabbath help us to better understand our absolute need of God’s grace for everything in our lives? How should this knowledge impact the way in which we live?