Then I saw another angel flying in midair, and he had the eternal gospel to proclaim to those who live on the earth—to every nation, tribe, language and people. He said in a loud voice, “Fear God and give him glory, because the hour of his judgment has come. Worship him who made the heavens, the earth, the sea and the springs of water.” Revelation 14:6-7, NIV
Have you ever wondered why so many people are so eager to state that they cannot believe in something as silly as an earth created by God? Today, many assume that only a naive person or a fool would believe such a thing. When we look at the creation record in Genesis 1 and 2, we see things that seem to support their viewpoint. After all if the day of “evening and morning” were defined by the sun and the moon created on the fourth day, how can there be evening and morning on the first through third days? It just doesn’t make sense. And how could science ever explain the creation of the sun and moon in a single, 24-hour day? Surely, no rational person could claim to believe the Genesis account.
Yet, this is exactly what God has asked us to believe. The battleground for the human heart is the battleground of faith for only faith can save us. For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—not by works, so that no one can boast. For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” Ephesians 2:8-10, NIV
As Christians, we often speak of “righteousness by faith.” However, do we recognize the connection between that statement about salvation and the work of Creation? Paul clearly made the connection in verse 10 of Ephesians 2. Apparently, a connection exists between the creation of mankind and his redemption through faith. After all, if the Creation never took place, what would redemption restore men and women to?
God knew that this would be a problem before Jesus’ return. Because of this, the Bible tells us that the opening proclamation of the three angel’s messages in Revelation 14 would call mankind to once again worship God as Creator. The entire Bible story is about the Creation, its fall, and its ultimate restoration. It is significant that reformation is usually accompanied by a call to “remember” God as Creator.
When God through Moses led the people of Israel out of Egypt to bring them to Canaan, He told them to “remember.” The fourth commandment says, “Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is a sabbath to the LORD your God. On it you shall not do any work, neither you, nor your son or daughter, nor your male or female servant, nor your animals, nor any foreigner residing in your towns. For in six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, but he rested on the seventh day. Therefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy.” Exodus 20, 8-11, NIV Not only did God want His people to remember Him as Creator, but He wanted them to remember the sign of that acknowledgment that He created in the beginning. He wanted them to keep the Sabbath.
But simply keeping the Sabbath as a work-free holiday was not enough. He wanted it to be a sign that they recognized that they were beings created by God. The Sabbath broke time up into seven-day weekly cycles. Why? Yearly cycles are based on the time it takes the earth to circuit the sun. Monthly cycles are based on the moon’s circuit of the earth. Weekly cycles have only one equivalent in nature. That equivalent is the week of Creation. To recognize that weekly cycle is tantamount to recognizing Creation as it is recorded in the Bible.
For thousands of years the Devil has worked ardently to eliminate that remembrance. He knows that if man chooses not to acknowledge his creation, he will cease to seek what was lost in the fall into sin of Genesis 3. After all if there was no Creation, there was no fall. If there was no fall, there is no need of a Savior. The more people he can march into oblivion along this path, the happier he is. Because the Sabbath is a special sign that continues to tie mankind to Creation, he has given it special attention.
His arguments are clever and many. “Surely God would not be so picky about the day?” he asks. Or he flatly states, “I keep all days holy, not just one.” Or “Christians are saved by faith, not by keeping that old Jewish Sabbath.” This is perhaps the most subtle of all, because just like in his temptations of Jesus, the Devil quotes Scripture to bolster his argument. It is true that Christians are saved by faith, but it is not true that the Sabbath is Jewish. Thousands of years before there was a Jew, God created the Sabbath. Jesus himself did not say that Sabbath was made for the Jews, but that “the Sabbath was made for man.” (See Mark 2:27)
It is no accident that the proclamation of the three angels’ messages of Revelation 14 that called men to worship God as Creator was accompanied with the proclamation of the Sabbath, which is recognition of that special relationship between a loving Creator and His creation. Their messages open with the announcement that God is Creator and close with a call to keep the commandments of God. Within those commandments is the call to “remember the Sabbath.” But can people who are living in this scientific age do that? What about all the problems with Creation mentioned at the beginning of this article?
On this “plain of Megiddo” the fate of millions will be decided. Many stand in the valley of decision. Will they choose to worship God as Creator? Will they recognize their need of restoration from the fall into sin? Will they respond to the Holy Spirit’s pleadings with their hearts to come to repentance and restoration? Or will they instead prefer to trust only in what their senses can discern? Will they question the logical basis of the Creation account and point out its scientific inconsistencies? Will they cite the laws of probability and imaginary timetables of genetic mutation and diversification and proclaim the gospel mere foolishness? The Bible says that many will. But some will choose another path.
“The person without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God but considers them foolishness, and cannot understand them because they are discerned only through the Spirit.” 1 Corinthians 2:14, NIV This is salvation by faith with all its pretense stripped away, for it is an invitation to walk not based on what this world considers knowledge, but by faith in God. After all, if we as Christians were to walk only by what we can see and understand, why would it be called “faith?”
God calls us to worship Him as Creator, and a sign of that worship is to recognize all of His creation, including the Sabbath. We are to remember that day, and by remembering that day, we are to acknowledge Him as our Creator. He does not argue the point with us, but asks us to accept it and live by faith. That faith will deliver us from the Gordian Knot of confusing arguments. Rather than remain in a Babylonian confusion of ideas that take us nowhere, we can choose to walk with our hand in that of our heavenly Father as we faithfully trust Him to guide us safely home. I like that idea. Don’t you?