“Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy” (Exodus 20:8). The fourth commandment was instituted by God when He gave the Ten Commandments on Mount Sinai. It set apart Saturday, the last day of the week, as a sacred day of worship under the Old Testament. God’s people were to work six days but the seventh day was ordained of God to be a day of rest with no work or labor.
Origin of the Sabbath
The first recorded observance of the Sabbath as a day of rest was when God sent manna to feed the children of Israel in the wilderness after they had fled Egypt. The people gathered twice as much bread on Friday, for God did not send the manna on Saturday, as it was “the rest of the holy sabbath unto the Lord” (Exodus 16:22-30). This observance was quickly solidified by God’s covenant of the Ten Commandments where He blessed and hallowed the Sabbath day (Exodus 20:11).Read more