Who needs a rest?—Day 7
Published in Creation 29(2):30–33, 2007
The bible tells us that on the seventh day of Creation Week God rested: ‘ the heavens and the earth were completed, and all their hosts. And by the seventh day God completed His work which He had done; and He rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had done’ (Genesis 2:1–2).
Does this mean that God was tired after all the work of creating the earth, the plants, the sun, moon and stars, the fish, birds and land animals, and then people? Did He need a rest and perhaps even a sleep to recover His strength? No! The Bible tells us that God does not slumber or sleep (Psalm 121:4). Note that the Hebrew word translated here as ‘rest’ also means ‘cease’. So God ceased, or rested from, His creative work after six days.
Why six days?
You may wonder why God took six days to make everything. He certainly did not need six days, any more than He needed billions of years. He could have done it all in a single instant on the very first day. So why did God take six days?
The answer is given in Exodus 20:10–11, and is the basis of the Fourth Commandment: Six days you shall labour and do all your work, but the seventh is a day of rest. ‘For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested on the seventh day.’ With these words, God commanded His people, Israel, to work for six days and rest for one.
That is why a week is seven days long, not six days or eight. It is based on the way God made the universe during Creation Week. His ‘rest’ on the seventh day was to give us an example.
People have sometimes tried other week lengths, but without success. In France in 1793, the government decreed three 10-day ‘weeks’ each month. People didn’t like it because they had to wait for the tenth day for a rest, instead of the seventh day. The 10-day week was abolished by Emperor Napoleon I in 1806.
The former Soviet Union introduced a five-day week in 1929–1930, and then changed to a six-day week in 1931. Neither of these worked, so the government returned to the normal seven-day week in 1940.
Jesus Christ is the Creator God
The New Testament tells us that God made the universe through His Son (Hebrews 1:2), and that all things were created by Jesus and for Jesus (John 1:3; Colossians 1:16). He is the second person of the Trinity, and the almighty and powerful Creator God. On each day of Creation Week, God created by the words He spoke. It is interesting that, in the Bible, one of the titles of the Lord Jesus Christ is ‘the Word’ (John 1:1–14).
So, when Jesus walked on Earth as a man, did He do anything to show us He was Creator? Let’s see how His works on Earth echoed what happened during Creation Week:
- God created the heavens and the earth out of nothing, and then He made Adam from the dust of the ground, and Eve from Adam’s rib.
- Creation meant giving life.
- God created by the Word which He spoke. For example, ‘God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light’ (Genesis 1:3).
- Creation displayed the glory of God (Revelation 4:11).
Let’s now compare these four aspects of Creation with some of the miracles of Jesus.
Jesus turned water into wine at a wedding ‘on the third day’ (John 2:1). This reminds us that it was on the third day of Creation Week, after He had caused the ground to appear out of the water, that He made grapevines from which wine is made.
Jesus also fed 5,000 people from five barley loaves and two fish, and more than 4,000 people from seven loaves and a few fish. Who else but the Creator of barley and fish could have done this?
- Jesus gave life to the dead on three occasions—to a widow’s son, to Jairus’ daughter, and to Lazarus. In the case of Lazarus, the process of decay in which a dead body eventually becomes dust had already begun. So here we have an echo of what happened on the sixth day of Creation Week, when God formed Adam from the dust of the ground and brought him to life. Jesus called Lazarus back to life, and his body that was rotting to dust became a living human being again.
Jesus sometimes touched people when He healed them. More often it was His Word of command that healed the sick, raised the dead, and cast out demons.
Some of Jesus’ miracles of healing instantly repaired nerves and muscles. New healthy flesh grew instantly to replace the diseased parts. When four men brought a paralyzed man to Jesus, they were bringing him to the Manufacturer for repair! (Mark 2:1–12)
- In all of these examples, Jesus showed His glory as Creator. ‘He revealed His glory and His disciples believed in Him’ (John 2:11). ‘This sickness is … for the glory of God, that the Son of God may be glorified by it’ (John 11:4).
Do we know when God created the angels?
Genesis does not say, but it was probably on Day 1, because Job 38:7 tells us that ‘all the sons of God’ or angels ‘shouted for joy’ when God ‘laid the earth’s foundation’.
The angels were all created holy, otherwise God could not have said on Day 6 that everything He had made was ‘very good’. So it was after Creation Week that some of the angels rebelled against God. The leader of these fallen angels is named Satan (meaning ‘adversary’).
The beginning and the end
Jesus Christ is the Creator God. Not only does the Bible say so, but during His earthly life He did the things we would expect the Creator God to do. He did them in the way we would expect the Creator God to do them—by the authority of His Word. And the doing of them displayed His glory. He is Almighty God, Lord, Creator and Saviour. All who believe in Him shall not perish but have eternal life (John 3:16).