Reasons for the Third Commandment in Israel

The Sabbath is to be kept holy as part of the order of creation because God rested on the seventh day of creation and hallowed it (Genesis 2: 2-3; Exodus 20: 8-11). Thus the holiday has been given in order to honour and commemorate God's creative work, which benefits all of mankind.


Another reason for keeping the Sabbath day holy is recorded in Deuteronomy 5: 15: "And remember that you were a slave in the land of Egypt, and the Lord your God brought you out from there by a mighty hand and by an outstretched arm; therefore the Lord your God commanded you to keep the Sabbath day."


The day of rest therefore serves to praise the Creator and recall Israel's liberation from captivity. Besides this, the Sabbath commemorates God's deeds upon mankind and for His chosen people in particular.