Bricks Without Straw
The Story . . .
Before Moses approached the king of Egypt
to seek freedom for the children of Israel, he and his brother,
Aaron, met with the oppressed leaders of Israel. During this
meeting, Moses and Aaron encouraged the people to consecrate
themselves to the Lord and told them God was about to
deliver them from slavery with a mighty hand.
The Israelites had been laboring seven days a week to
maintain their heavy workload for the Egyptians. But after this
meeting with Moses, they apparently
decided to begin resting again every
seventh day. This is why the furious
Pharaoh later said to Moses and Aaron:
"Ye make them rest from their burdens."
Exodus 5:5. (The Hebrew word for "rest"
used here is "shabath." It means "to cause
to keep sabbath.")
The angry king knew that he must
do something drastic to hold this nation
of slaves under his control, so he decided
to drown them with work and crowd
both God and worship from their
thoughts. He said, "You shall no longer
give the people straw to make brick as
before. Let them go and gather straw for
themselves. And you shall lay on them
the quota of bricks which they made
before. You shall not diminish it." Exodus 5:7, 8, NKJV.*
As in the days of Moses, God is about to do great things
for His people. Soon they will be delivered from the slavery of
sin and journey to the heavenly Canaan. And once again, God
is now trying to turn the minds of His people toward the
importance of the Sabbath rest.
Fill in the blanks after reading each Bible text.
1. Did God make the Sabbath rest only for Israelites?
Mark 2:27 And he said unto them, The sabbath was _______________
for _______________, and not man for the sabbath.
NOTE: When Jesus says that the Sabbath was made for man, the word "man"
means all "mankind"-for all people, for all time, in every place.
2. When did God establish the Sabbath?
Genesis 2:1, 3 Thus the heavens and the earth were _______________,
and all the host of them. ... And God blessed the seventh day, and sanctified
it: because that in it he had rested from all his work which God created and
NOTE: The Sabbath was established at the close of Creation week.
3. What day of the week is the Sabbath?
Genesis 2:2, 3 And on the _______________ _______________
God ended his work which he had made; and he rested on the
_______________ _______________ from all his work which he had
made. And God blessed the _______________ _______________, and
NOTE: Three times in Genesis chapter 2, God tells us that He made the Sabbath
from the seventh day of Creation week. He also "sanctified" it, which means "to
set aside for a holy use." God made the Sabbath as a 24-hour period of time,
because time is what it takes to develop a true love relationship with Jesus. The
devil, like Pharaoh of Egypt, wants to keep us so busy working that we don't think
about God. Knowing how overly busy end-time people would be, God set aside
24 special hours weekly to spend with His people, getting acquainted. He has
made that weekly appointment with you. Don't fail to meet Him!
4. How has God demonstrated the importance of His holy
Exodus 20:8-11 Remember the sabbath day, to _______________ it
holy. ... The Lord _______________ the sabbath day, and hallowed it.
NOTE: Exodus 20:8-11 is the fourth commandment of God's law. By making the
Sabbath one of His Ten Commandments, He demonstrated its extreme
importance. Verse 10 calls it "the sabbath of the Lord thy God." Only the fourth
commandment begins with the word "remember," indicating God knew that
people would forget. Breaking God's Ten Commandment law is sin (1 John 3:4).
But Jesus died to save His people from their sins, or law-breaking (Matthew 1:21).
5. Of what two precious things does God say the Sabbath
is a sign?
Exodus 31:17 It [the Sabbath] is a sign between me and the children of
Israel forever: for in six days the _______________
_______________ heaven and earth.
Ezekiel 20:12 I gave them my sabbaths, to be a sign between me
and them, that they might know that I am the Lord that
NOTE: God says the Sabbath is a sign, or mark, of His power as Creator and
Redeemer. In Revelation 14:6-14, God gives three important messages that are
to be proclaimed to "them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and
kindred, and tongue, and people." Verse 6. The first message is found in verse 7:
"Fear God, and give glory to him; for the hour of his judgment is come: and
worship him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of
waters." This appeal for a return to true worship is drawn right from the fourth
commandment: "For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and
all that in them is, and rested the seventh day." Exodus 20:11.
6. Which day did Jesus keep holy?
Luke 4:16 And he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up:
and, as _______________ _______________ was, he went into the
synagogue on the sabbath day, and stood up for to read.
NOTE: Jesus is our example (1 Peter 2:21) in everything, including
Sabbathkeeping, which was His custom. A "custom" is a regular habit.
Christians are to walk as He walked (1 John 2:6).
7. What was Paul's custom regarding the Sabbath?
Acts 17:2 And Paul, as _______________ _______________
was, went in unto them, and three sabbath days reasoned with them
out of the scripture.
Acts 18:4 And he reasoned in the synagogue _______________
_______________, and persuaded the Jews and the Greeks.
NOTE: It was also Paul's custom to keep the seventh-day Sabbath.
8. Did the apostles also meet with the Gentiles on the
Acts 13:42 And when the Jews were gone out of the synagogue, the
_______________ besought that these words might be preached to
them the next _______________.
NOTE: On another occasion, the disciples met on the Sabbath with a group of
Gentile women by the riverside, because the city had no synagogue (Acts
9. Did Jesus intend for His people to keep the Sabbath
after He died for their sins?
Matthew 24:20 But pray ye that your flight be not in the winter, neither
on the _______________ day.
NOTE: Jesus was here predicting the fall of Jerusalem, which He knew would
take place in A.D. 70 (about 40 years later). But He suggested they pray that
they would not have to flee from the invading army on the Sabbath. It is
clear that Jesus expected His people to be keeping the Sabbath holy long after
10. Does the Bible teach that God's end-time people would
also keep His seventh-day Sabbath holy?
Revelation 12:17 And the dragon [devil] was wroth with the woman
[church], and went to make war with the remnant [remainder] of her
seed [children], which _______________ the _______________
Revelation 14:12 Here is the patience of the saints: here are they that
_______________ the _______________ of God.
Revelation 22:14 Blessed are they that _______________ his
commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and
may _______________ in through the gates into the city.
NOTE: The above Scriptures obviously refer to God's end-time church, and
each passage states plainly that God's end-time church keeps His commandments-
which, of course, include the fourth commandment, the Sabbath.
11. Will all of the saved in heaven keep the Sabbath?
Isaiah 66:22, 23 For as the new heavens and the new earth, which I
will make, shall remain before me, saith the Lord, so shall your seed and
your name remain. And it shall come to pass, that ... from one sabbath to
another, shall _______________ _______________ come to worship
before me, saith the Lord.
NOTE: The Bible says that all the redeemed of all ages will keep God's Sabbath
together in heaven and in the new earth.
12. Can we be certain that the present seventh day of the
week (Saturday) is the same Sabbath day that Jesus
Luke 23:54-24:1 And that day was the preparation [Friday], and the
sabbath drew on. ... And they returned, and prepared spices and
ointments; and _______________ the _______________ day
according to the commandment. Now upon the _______________
_______________ of the week, ... they came unto the sepulchre.
NOTE: Jesus was crucified on Friday (preparation), the day before the Sabbath
(Mark 15:42). Jesus rested in the tomb on the Sabbath of the commandment
(Luke 23:56), then rose on the first day-the day after the Sabbath (Mark 16:1-6).
Christians around the world still celebrate that day as Easter Sunday. The Bible
clearly shows that the Sabbath was the day after Friday and the day before Sunday.
It's easy to locate that day of the week on any calendar. (See supplements entitled
"What the Dictionary Says" and "Hasn't the Calendar Been Changed?")
13. Does God allow anyone to change His holy day?
Proverbs 30:5, 6 Every word of God is pure: ... _______________ thou
_______________ unto his words, lest he reprove thee, and thou be found
NOTE: Just before God gave the Ten Commandments, as described in
Deuteronomy chapter 5, He solemnly warned that no one should "add unto" or
"diminish ought from" them (Deuteronomy 4:2). Rather, they were to be kept
precisely as He gave them. God blessed His Sabbath (Exodus 20:11), and when
He blesses something, it is blessed forever (1 Chronicles 17:27). God says, "My
covenant will I not break, nor alter the thing that is gone out of my lips." Psalm
89:34. Misguided men admit that they changed God's holy Sabbath to Sunday.
But God will not accept men's teachings when He gave the Bible as our guide.
14. When does the Sabbath begin and end?
Leviticus 23:32 From _______________ unto _______________,
shall ye celebrate your sabbath.
Mark 1:32 And at even, when the _______________ did
NOTE: The Sabbath hours begin at sundown Friday and close at sundown Saturday.
15. What day is the Lord's day of Revelation 1:10?
Exodus 20:10 But the seventh day is the sabbath of the
_______________ thy God.
Isaiah 58:13 If thou turn away thy foot from the sabbath, from doing thy
pleasure on _____________ _______________ _______________.
Mark 2:28 Therefore the Son of man is Lord also of the
NOTE: In both the Old and New Testaments, God calls the Sabbath the Lord's
day. He also commands that people be warned against committing the sin of
trampling God's Sabbath (Isaiah 58:1, 13). God declares that His holy Sabbath is
for all people (Isaiah 56:2-7). The Bible never refers to Sunday as the Lord's day. It
is simply one of the six working days of the week (Ezekiel 46:1). That's all it has
16. What blessing is promised by the Sabbath commandment?
Matthew 11:28 Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden,
and I will give you _______________.
Exodus 33:14 My _______________ shall go with thee, and I will give
Hebrews 4:5 If they shall enter into ___________ _______________.
NOTE: Each one of the Ten Commandments has a spiritual meaning. Some
legalistic Christians focus on the letter of the law and neglect the spirit of the law.
Jesus wants us to have both to maintain balance (Matthew 5:21, 22, 27, 28). The
Bible often uses the term "rest" to refer to salvation. Hebrews 4:1, 4, 9, 10 says
that those who have truly been led to the "rest" of conversion and who abide in
Christ will keep the seventh-day Sabbath as a symbol of the Christian rest.
Because Jesus has given the Sabbath as a sign of His power to create and sanctify,
would you like to begin receiving the blessings of this holy day by keeping it in
This section provides additional information for further study.
What the Dictionary Says
Look up the following entries in almost any dictionary, and notice
what you'll find:
Saturday (noun) The seventh and last day of the week.
seventh-day (adjective) Of the seventh day (Saturday).
Sunday (noun) The first day of the week.
First day (noun) Sunday.
Hasn't the Calendar Been Changed?
The calendar was changed once in October 1582, but it did not alter
the weekly cycle. Ten dates were omitted from the calendar following
October 4, 1582. What would have been Friday, October 5, became
Friday, October 15. The diagram below will help you to visualize the
change. You will see that it did not change the order of the days of the
Sun. Mon. Tue. Wed. Thu. Fri. Sat.
1 2 3 4 15 16
17 18 19 20 21 22 23
24 25 26 27 28 29 30