Fundamental #11

What is the Sabbath?

Fundamental #11

Memory Scripture

Then God blessed the seventh day and sanctified it, because in it He rested from all His work which God had created and made.—Genesis 2:3


Summary Statement

The seventh day of the week is God’s Sabbath. It was set apart by God as special the very week He made the earth and everything in it. During that creation week, God made days begin in the evening and continue until sunset the next day. So the Sabbath begins at sunset on Friday evening and continues until sunset on Saturday evening. Today we’re used to our calendar days starting at 12:01 in the morning. But when you really think about it, this is so strange since most people are fast asleep and don’t even notice when a new day begins! As always, God’s way makes so much more sense.

On the Sabbath, people are commanded to rest from their usual work during the week and focus on God their Creator. It is a gift to pause and reset one day a week. Jesus Christ, the apostles, and the New Testament Church all kept the Sabbath, so people who are truly trying to follow Jesus Christ’s example still keep the Sabbath today.


Begin Your Study

Ask your children which day of the week they think is the most special and why. God tells us that the seventh day (Saturday) is the most special day of the week! Let’s learn more about why.

Read through the memory scripture together with your children, then read through the summary statement (remember to simplify the statement, if necessary). Have your children cut and paste the summary statement from this page in their “Fundamentals Bible Study Journal” (as suggested in the Memorizing Scripture resource “The Fundamentals”). Then have your children read and write the memory scripture, Genesis 2:3, in their journals.

God has given us the Sabbath as a day to rest from our regular activities of the week and to spend more time with Him. We do not do our usual work or go to school. It’s the perfect day to learn more about God, the Bible, and His creation!

Discuss the meanings of the words blessed and sanctified. When something is blessed, it is something special from God. When something is sanctified, it means that it is set apart to be different (in a good way) from other things.

On the journal page with the memory scripture, have your children write down all the things that are special about the Sabbath to them. This could include family traditions, seeing good friends at church, or a special Sabbath family meal.


Digging Deeper Interaction #1

Have your children read the memory scripture. Remind them that the Sabbath is a special day that is different from every other day of the week.

Today you and your children are going to create an activity to make the seventh day extra special! You will be making a Sabbath spinner! This is a large paper circle that is divided into approximately six equal parts (for the spinner, you can use a brad and a large paper clip). Each section of the spinner will have a special Sabbath activity. Each Sabbath, your children can spin the spinner and then everyone has to do the special activity the spinner lands on! Some examples include:

  • Making a special Sabbath dessert
  • Singing a hymn together as a family
  • Writing “Happy Sabbath” cards to church friends
  • Reading a Bible story together
  • Creating a special Sabbath centerpiece or floral arrangement to go on the dinner table
  • Playing a specific Sabbath game as a family


Digging Deeper Interaction #2

Today you will do another special activity for the Sabbath: creating a Sabbath box! A Sabbath box is a box full of special Sabbath toys, books, and so on, that are meant to be used only on the Sabbath. This could include special table settings that your child will set out on the dinner table for a weekly special Sabbath dinner.

Have your children come up with different items they would like to include in the box. They can then decorate a cardboard box to keep all of their special Sabbath materials in one place (this could also be a special Sabbath bag instead of a box).

Remind your children that the items they place in the box are going to be set apart for the Sabbath only. These will be special items for the Sabbath.


Bible Story: Israel, Manna, and the Sabbath

The Sabbath is important to God! He used it to teach a valuable lesson to the Israelites.  

Go through the EEI resource “The Israelites, Manna, and an Important Lesson” (in the People of the Bible section) to learn more about how important the Sabbath is to God and why it should be for us as well.


Bonus Ideas

How many examples in the New Testament can you find about Jesus Christ, His apostles, and the early Church keeping the Sabbath? There are several! Challenge your children (and yourself!) to find a few to add to their “Fundamentals Bible Study Journal.”

Take a nature walk! Explore a meadow, flower garden, or your own backyard on a Sabbath day or evening, and take some time to marvel at the wonders of God’s creation! Observe the mathematical construction of a fern leaf, the grace of a bird’s flight, or the beauty of a beetle. The key is to move slowly, observing and reflecting, so you can fully appreciate God’s masterful creation.

Find the “Sabbath Countdown Flip Chart” resource in the Additional Resources section. Assemble this wonderful teaching tool and use it to anticipate the Sabbath each week.


Wrap-up Activity

To make this Fundamental’s scripture poster, have your child write down the memory scripture, Genesis 2:3, on a large poster board that is cut into the shape of the number seven. Hang the poster somewhere in the house.

To end your study, have your child recite the memory scripture for a small audience, perhaps for elderly members at church services when giving them handmade “Happy Sabbath” cards.

Further Your Study

The Fundamentals

The Fundamentals

Kids are well-known for asking lots of questions. Wouldn’t it be great to have some answers and scriptures already prepared? Our “Fundamentals” series asks the basic questions of life and provides scriptures to memorize for the Read More >

The Israelites, Manna, and an Important Lesson

The Israelites, Manna, and an Important Lesson

This Bible story recounts the miracle of manna that God offered the Israelites during their wilderness wandering and the unique handling instructions it required for the Sabbath. Discover how the Israelites learned a valuable lesson about listening. Read More >

Sabbath Countdown Flip Chart

Sabbath Countdown Flip Chart

This wonderfully creative teaching tool will help you and your family anticipate God’s gift of the Sabbath each week. Download our instructions to assemble it using poster board, paper clips and split rings (or book rings).  Read More >

The 10 Commandments

The 10 Commandments

The 10 Commandments are a key to loving God and loving our neighbors. They’re also essential to living good, happy lives. Our "Commandments" series gives an overview of what the 10 Commandments are and why they are important. Read More >

Guided Discussion: The Sabbath

Guided Discussion: The Sabbath

What are some of your favorite things about the Sabbath? Get your family talking about the Sabbath with these guided discussion questions.  Read More >