Thus the heavens and the earth and all their array were completed. On the seventh day God completed the work he had been doing; he rested on the seventh day from all the work he had undertaken. God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because on it he rested from all the work he had done in creation. (Genesis 2:1-3)
Mark’s Gospel tells the story of Jesus walking through a field of grain on the sabbath. His disciples began to pick heads of grain, which caused the Pharisees to accuse them of doing what is unlawful on the sabbath. Jesus corrects the Pharisees telling them the sabbath was made for man, not man for the sabbath. (Mark 2: 23-28)
I believe it was St. Bonaventure who said that creation is God’s first book of self-revelation. All of creation points us to the Creator. When the splendor of creation takes away my breath, I do not find it difficult to believe in God, nor to believe that even as God, he needed to rest after creating the heavens and the earth and everything within them!
Sabbath recalls this truth, and calls us to rest from our labors, ultimately to take our rest in God himself.
For Christians, Sunday, the Day of Resurrection of Christ has taken the place of the sabbath. God is the Creator of all, and his Son, Jesus, through his death and resurrection is the Redeemer of all. Sabbath is a day to rest, to recharge, to recreate in the God of Creation, in Christ the Re-creator of all. Thus Jesus also said that the Son of Man is lord even of the sabbath.
Lord, grant us the grace to recognize you in the beauty of creation. Grant us the grace to find our rest in You!5