Day by day things take shape, step by step the work moves towards completion. God the great Architect checks each stage and declares Himself satisfied.
The story is magnificent and majestic. But it is not without its problems.
For example, why does the system change once the sixth day is over?
Everything up to that point is material and physical – land and seas, sun, moon and stars, flora and fauna, man himself – but creation now becomes non-physical with the seventh day Sabbath.
The clue comes in the word la’asot, “to function”; the physical world is created “to function”, but subject to a condition: everything must have time out.
The earth has to rest – hence the sabbatical year. The animals have to rest – hence they must rest when we do.
Above all man, as the only part of creation with a consciousness of time and purpose, must rest. This is why Shabbat was created.
Yet Sabbath rest is not just physical; the day is not merely for sleep and inactivity but for spiritual and cultural refreshment.
A famous pianist was asked, “What is the secret of your playing?”
His answer? “The magic is not in the notes, but in the pauses between them!”
Shabbat is the pause that makes the difference.