Thread Bible Podcast with Chuck Quinley

Thread Season 4 Episode 9: The 7th Day Rest, Part I

March 17, 2020 Thread with Dr. Chuck Quinley Season 4 Episode 9
Thread Bible Podcast with Chuck Quinley
Thread Season 4 Episode 9: The 7th Day Rest, Part I
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Thread Bible Podcast with Chuck Quinley
Thread Season 4 Episode 9: The 7th Day Rest, Part I
Mar 17, 2020 Season 4 Episode 9
Thread with Dr. Chuck Quinley

In this episode of Thread, God will invite us to join him as he settles into a secure state as King of the worlds he has created. We learn what the Sabbath day is all about.








Music by Ryan Andersen and Ross Schmidt

Ryan Andersen is licensed under an Attribution-NonCommercial License.

Thread Bible Podcast is produced and edited by Ross Schmidt and is brought to you by Medialightasia.com

Support the show (https://www.paypal.com/donate?hosted_button_id=RL4F28KKJPKWQ)

Show Notes Transcript

In this episode of Thread, God will invite us to join him as he settles into a secure state as King of the worlds he has created. We learn what the Sabbath day is all about.








Music by Ryan Andersen and Ross Schmidt

Ryan Andersen is licensed under an Attribution-NonCommercial License.

Thread Bible Podcast is produced and edited by Ross Schmidt and is brought to you by Medialightasia.com

Support the show (https://www.paypal.com/donate?hosted_button_id=RL4F28KKJPKWQ)

Hi, I'm Chuck Quinley, from the Thread Bible Podcast. This is the first of two episodes about the seventh day of creation: the gift of the seventh day rest. And in this episode, God will invite us to join him as he settles into his secure state as King of the worlds He has created, and we'll learn what the Sabbath day is all about. So stay tuned.

Welcome to Thread, God's word tying together all the pieces of our lives through verse by verse study of the Bible. In Season Four, we're exploring the bedrock of the entire Bible, Genesis 1-12. The Thread Bible Podcast is brought to you by MediaLightAsia.com. Hey, click the link in the show notes and join our automated list and we'll be able to send you a notification every time we release a new episode of Thread. You'll be the first one to get it. And we'll also send you some free resources and announcements about online courses and events from MediaLight to help you keep making progress in your personal and spiritual development. And we want to have a question and response episode. We've covered a lot of ground here. So if you want to shoot us a recorded question, just email it to [email protected] Tell us your name, where you're from, and try to keep the question to 20 seconds or so. So thanks a lot!

All right, well, this episode is day seven. The final day of creation. The Sabbath day of God's rest. And to be honest, I have never known what to do with the seventh day. The whole concept, you know, God resting? Why? Nothing tires him out. He doesn't sleep. So why the Sabbath? I mean, I can tell in the Bible sabbath is a big deal. It's a big deal in the Old Testament. And even in the New Testament, it's the source of the biggest battles between Jesus and the Jewish authorities. And I knew -- I've known all along that I'm the one, and I missing something, and something pretty significant. And after much research, I am just now beginning to grasp a bit more about the Sabbath. And it's beautiful. And I would love to share it with you in this episode. Now, if as a Christian you think, "Oh, this has nothing to do with me." Please be reminded one of Christ's favorite ways of referring to himself was as Lord of the Sabbath. So let's dig in. We're in chapter 2, the closing notes of the creation Overture. By the way, chapter 2 wasn't chapter 2 until the 1200s AD. There are no chapter or verses in the Old or New Testament manuscripts. This is something that was added by a helpful medieval scholar named Stephen Langton, and he did an amazing job. I mean, it's really helpful. Can you imagine? We would have just had to say, "Well, it's in Romans. Kind of toward the beginning of it." And instead, he gave us this whole grid where we have chapters, and we have verses, and it really is an aid in study. However, it can change your perception of certain passages. And it just because there is a break there. And Stephen Langton did an amazing job overall. And he mostly seems to have gotten it right. But in many places, like chapter 2 verses 1-3, there are some who disagree. He placed the division here because of the way it opens. In chapter 2, verse 1, it says, "And the heavens and the earth were finished." And this is the echo of the very first verse of the Bible that says, "In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth." So in one sense, he's saying, "Well, you know, they began the first chapter, we'll call that a chapter that starts with that line. And now another chapter starts with that line again." But it's just as easily a great way to end the first section, which is what I think is happening. I mean, we're still in the seven days of creation. And we're on the seventh day. So I think what was intended was to open and close with the same line. So we started with "In the beginning God created the heavens in the earth." And now we wrap up at this section on day seven with, "And the heavens and the earth were finished..." -- I'll read the rest of the text -- "And the heavens and the earth were finished, and all their hosts. On the seventh day, God finished his work which he had made. And he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had made. And God blessed the seventh day, and hallowed it. Because on it he rested from all his work, which God had created and made." That's chapter 2 verses 1-3.

I realize now that I've never appreciated this section. And I've really never gotten the importance of the seventh day, simply because I am a workaholic. I am a workaholic, son of a workaholic, of a long line of Quinley workaholics. And we are born into a hard-working blue collar nation. But you know, workaholics aren't just hard working. They're also people focused on action. And they are especially fixed on the world of things. When I say things, I mean, there are fences to build, there are fields to harvest, there are barns to raise children to bear and train up. There are projects, there are lands that need to be tamed, there's a, you know, it's "a material world" stuff, there are things that, with human action and activity, we can make a difference in the world around us. We can build things and cause things to happen. And that's, you know, that's the heartbeat of a workaholic person. And our focus is on the world of things that we can see. So there are things we can launch, and things we can plant. And there's harvest. And there are things we can create. I mean, it's work, glorious work, work we can see. So we can mark our accomplishments, and we can measure how we're doing. And we can figure out how to do things better, you know, better, bigger, faster (which of course is better). So when I read the rest of this Creation Overture, you know, the beginning of it, I've got God. He's in a secret place, and he's creating to his heart's content. And I get it. I mean, I really get it, I want to know all about it. I want to know about giraffes, and peacocks, and bacteria, and sound waves, and time, and I am so interested in all that God made and how he made it. And then I run slam into chapter 2 verse 1, and God finished his work. And honestly, I am bewildered by that sentence. I mean, how do you finish something? Something that is so involved; something so endless as a universe? How do you finish something when it constantly is evolving? And it is something that, you know, you need to daily maintain it just for their survival of everything that lives on this planet? How do you finish work like that? I mean, my little work, my to do list, it never ends, literally. Never. My to do list is digital, you know, so I never run out of paper. And it is never finished. It just runs on, I knock things off the top of it. I put new things on the bottom. And it just runs, and runs, and runs, and runs. And so here I am. And I'm looking at the Great One, the Creator, the artisan God who loves to create, and he creates at the highest level possible. And I'm watching him and he draws a line. I mean, it's the universe he's creating, and he draws a line and he says, "It's good enough. It works. I'll finish." And we're about to run into two really big ideas in chapter 2. So stay tuned.

So here at the end of the Creation Overture, we get the story of the seventh day. And we run into these two ideas. And here's the first one. So pay attention fellow workaholics. This word "finish" in Genesis 2, in the Hebrew it doesn't mean that the world is perfect. It does not mean that nothing else could be added to it or that nothing else will ever happen to this piece of work. Actually, when we go up above it a few verses, when God judges his his own entire work of creating our world, he doesn't even call it perfect. Apparently, that's not even his goal. He says, "It's very good.".... It's very good? Really? You're gonna stop with that? But he is happy. He's actually very happy with it being very good. The word "finish" doesn't mean that is absolutely perfect. The word "finish" means simply that you cease, you lay your tools down, and you step away. The Creator God just stopped. The endlessly creative One, by his own will, ceased creating. He could have gone on forever creating. But he set a limit for his own activity. And then he just stopped working on it. Good. It's very good, it works. Ship it. And out it goes. So here's our first big idea: Cease. Just stop it. You can work on a thing until that thing is no longer needed, trying to make it the perfect thing. But you know, in my lifetime, I have realized that most of the time, you really can -- ot's just an expression, but -- you can really sort of build the plane as you fly it once it's good enough to get off the ground. because things change so fast. That: agile is often more important than perfect. So we all, even those of us who find great joy and delight in our work, because honestly, I have never found my work a burden. I have loved everything I have ever worked on from my academic career, to pastoring, to media work and media instruction, and helping launch new initiatives. I love all of it, I find joy in all of it, I can do it for 12 hours, 15 hours, I am not tired by it. I love it. But that's what this verse is telling me. Even those of us who find great joy and delight in our work really need to just lay it down. We need to turn off the phone. We need to power down. Just be still and do nothing more. You know, we can stop saying, "I'm learning to turn off my phone." There's no learning. We just, you know, you just push the button and it goes off. It's just off. Just act. But the action is the action of stopping your busyness. Stop your work. And you may find if you try this, that you are so addicted to activity, that even sitting still doing nothing for 60 seconds, just sit there and breathe, it may feel like torture. You know, some people say, "I just can't sit still". Well, we all can. But we're addicts. We're addicted. We're addicted to channel changing, even relationship surfing. But in the seventh day, the seventh day of creation, our Maker tells us to follow him follow his example, and cease. Finish. That word means" stop doing, or in other words, do nothing.

A healthy rhythm of work. And then non-work. Replenishment. We all know, in our head at least, that it's essential to living a healthy life. But, so this is our first big idea that comes to us in the seventh day. And that is no matter how creative you are, how much you have to do, or how big your job is, you must cease. You must finish. You must stop being active. Just quit. Be still. Do nothing. Secondly, we've got another big idea. And that is a new word that we saw in the text. And it's the word: rest. And rest is a word that we have misunderstood. This is not the image of God putting his feet up on the sofa, taking a nap. It's not a tired God catching his breath. It's not even God giving us an example of taking a day off each week. Which was a revolutionary thought in the ancient world, when God did reveal that to the Jews, and they began to practice it. This was a new idea. I mean, in the country where I live, which is has no Christian or Jewish background, many, many people work seven days a week. There's no such thing as a day off each week. This is an idea that came to us from God's revelation to the Jews. But the word rest in this context on day seven, it's not that God is trying to give us a great example of taking a day off so he can get back to work. It's a much bigger idea than that.

Let me give you a couple of ideas, of illustrations. First one is maybe the thought -- I don't know if you've ever done any camping. But you know, in camping you go to a place that you're not, it isn't your place, you're not familiar with it. It's just in the woods somewhere and you have to set up a camp site. So you brought all this stuff. And you have to do work, you have to figure out where are the sleeping places going to go, and where's the fire going to be made. And you design a camp site, and then you have to work at it and you got to gather firewood and put all this stuff together. Okay, now you've got it all set up. And then you stop, and you make a fire. And you brew some coffee. And you survey the little world that you made. You got your hammock up, you've got your water stored, there's your tent, it's strong, sleeping bags out, your food is ready. you settle in to your camp, this is related to the concept. "Rest". Actually, let me give you a better example, because it's an exact example. Imagine that you are a king that is ascending the throne. You have been chosen to be king, you are the legitimate sovereign, over a people and a land, and so you have been ratified as King. There have been massive celebrations, a coronation ceremony, the great banqueting, the feasting, you've set up your government, you have appointed your officials. And then there is a day where you go into your throne room, and you sit on your throne. This is precisely the idea of the word rest. It is that as a sovereign, you are settling into the kingdom that you control. And you are looking around you, and you are getting your bearings, and you are settling in to reign, to use your power throughout your lifetime to enact your will in your realm. You are resting. You have ascended to your rest. That's the concept.

You know, I heard this week that in the UK when they have their elections, and you win Prime Minister as your office, you have like 14 hours and you are already in 10 Downing Street, and you set up residence and you begin your work of governing. It's amazing to rest. The idea of resting as it's used here in Genesis. It means to settle into your reign. It's the action of getting comfortable with all the assets that you now control. And that's what God has done. He's built a universe and he's built a world. And he has found his partner, he created his partner, dirt man, and he appointed dirt man over the celestial beings, over all the spirit-world creatures who are sons of light -- and they're glorious -- but he didn't choose them, he chose dirt man, dirt woman. And he has breathed His breath into them and they are alive from his spirit, and he says, "You are my co-rulers". He settles down now, getting comfortable with the assets that he controls and the span of rule that he has. And he begins to feel the control of this kingdom. And if we can live like this, you're a person who is ahead of your schedule, you will have this centeredness. Because you're resting. You're on your throne, you feeling in control, you're centered in your heart, you know who you are, you assume your place, you take your authority to yourself. Because your mission is going to flow from your own deepest heart. It's what you truly care about. And so you settle into your throne, and you gather your team around you. And your vision is clear. And now you are ready to reign. We'll be right back.

See, here's the thing, you can't reign, you can't take your rest on your throne, you can't begin reigning in life until you cease your busy labor. The backbreaking season of creation work, the labor of creation, it was just that: it was a season. And the purpose of the season was to prepare for your reign. You know, the work of creation is such a precious time. But you know, creation is not your darling, creation is your tool, because you are the king. And you're sitting there now ready to reign. You know, our reign -- God wants us to reign in our life over the little worlds that he gives us. And our reign is not the endlessly doing of work. We're not judged like a factory worker, by how many pieces we can produce in our life. That is not a natural way for a human to live. It is a soul-breaking slavery. But when you take sabbath rest as God is doing here, you stop working, you stop building things, and instead you start using what you built. And that's really a good word. Because I have been, I've spent the last three years of my life -- unexpectedly -- I thought it was going to be one year, and it turned into pretty close to a three year project to build MediaLight's new campus, to oversee that, and to, you know, get all the furnishings in place, get everything legal. Actually, this month, the road will get built that will connect our campus to the main highway. And it's, it's finished. You know, what I don't need to do is piddle with the campus forever. And just keep on with little building projects that keep me distracted constantly. Everything that we have going on now is for a purpose. Now it's time to use the campus. Now it's time to develop the ministry, take it to another level, scale it beyond where it is right now because of this great new asset that God has given us in the form of the buildings. So we have our campus, we have our land, we've got five acres, and we're settled into it. So now stop building things, and start using what we're building, what we built. So, you know, all this sets me up to be ready for the big lessons about the Sabbath that I never got before. Because as I said, I was in love with the accomplishments of God. I have, you know, I love to read about the works. That's the plural, you know, these are the projects, the works of God add up to "the Work of God", the body of work. You know, I hope when I'm gone, that I can leave behind a body of work. And some of that will be this podcast. Some of that will be books, some of that will be trainings of different kinds that I've packaged that other people can use. And others of it are organizations that I helped to build. So as, you know, as I look back, I'm going to evaluate partially my life on my work and on my works that create your life's work. So I'm looking at what God has done and I'm, I'm just amazed at it, I'm in love with it. And that's why I never got to see before that day seven is not, you know, a blown day, it's not a vacation day so God can get rested up, and then get back to work, which is the thing that matters most to a workaholic. You know, that on Monday morning, God's going to get a lot of rest on Sunday, and then Monday -- bam -- he's going to hit it. Actually, you know, we know in fact, we're talking about Friday, Saturday, but you know that God is going to get back to work on the first day of the week. And I missed the whole point. The point is, that day seven is the goal of days one through six. Let that sink in. It's not God taking a day off. Day seven is the goal of days one through six, it is the life God is living right now. And it is the life God invites us into. Because there are two ways of living as a human. And one of those is striving, you are always working, you are working to be affirmed, you are working for the approval of God, you are working for the approval of others, you are working, you know, just for the the sense of affirmation that it gives you. You're working on your body, you're working on your appearance, you know, you're trying to succeed, and it's just this treadmill of work. And to understand that God is done with that. He is now using the things he made, and he has settled into his throne. And he is reigning, he is using the assets to accomplish his will. And he invites us to join him on the throne, and to live a life with him in submission in his rest. That God has placed beside his big throne another throne, and it's for humans. That we can -- some people do not understand submission to God. For them, because they're rebels in their heart, and because they have bought into what we're going to see happening in chapters 2 and 3 where humans rebel against this God. They do not understand what submission to this God is all about. Because he has done the work, he has defeated the darkness, he has brought order to Tohu va Bohu that wants to destroy and pull everything to pieces, and flatten every accomplishment and turn it into nothingness. And this God has risen up and made war against those forces and he has exerted his energy, and he has built this world, pregnant with opportunity, full of abundance, seed on the ground, fruit trees, animal life, everywhere, resources, boundless resources, and he has looked at us and he has put a crown on our head, and he has said, "Rule with me". And all we have to do is line up with him because only he knows good from evil, only he knows right from wrong. He has the vision for this planet. He built this planet. He loves this planet. And all we have to do is get in line with him. Love what he loves, hate what he hates, and we get to live in the Sabbath. We get to rest. We don't have to strive. We don't have to earn his approval. We don't have to live under the obligations of a law and a legalistic mindset, and worrying how others perceive us and always trying to, you know, to rise above like in a competitive world system against others, but we can just rest in him. It's glorious.

You know, now, some of these episodes of Thread, they take.. They take me weeks to create. I mean, I know I made an outline of where each lesson is supposed to go, but sometimes I don't feel in my heart that it is really settled into me yet. So I just won't record it until I feel it dropped down inside. And I really feel like I know the truth of this passage. It's in my own heart. And I want it to be like that before I share it with you. Sometimes, easily, I can spend 20 hours to make a 20 minute podcast, but it's worth it to me. One of my dreams for this is that you will see your world differently because the Bible is spiritual truth, and it will help you live your material-world life. Live your life as a "nephesh", an embodied physical life animated by the breath of our Creator, and who turns out to be our Father, of all things, that he would be Father for us. I pray you'll have new eyes, and you can appreciate the interplay of the spiritual and the practical throughout every day of your life. And I believe God wants to use Genesis 1-12 to change the patterns of your life, and to invite you to return to life in the garden with him. The kind of life, the kind of human life that God envisioned. This is the kingdom of God. And it's here, and it's for you, and it's for me. Hey, don't forget to check out MediaLightAsia.com/summer to learn more about our summer media camp. Expect God to use you today because you are the light of the world.