Exodus 31:15
Six days may work be done; but in the seventh is the sabbath of rest, holy to the LORD: whoever does any work in the sabbath day, he shall surely be put to death.
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(15) Six days.—Comp. Exodus 20:9.

The sabbath of rest.—Rather, a sabbath of rest, or a complete rest. The repetition (sabbath sabbâthôn) gives an idea of completeness.

31:12-17 Orders were now given that a tabernacle should be set up for the service of God. But they must not think that the nature of the work, and the haste that was required, would justify them in working at it on sabbath days. The Hebrew word /shabath/ signifies rest, or ceasing from labour. The thing signified by the sabbath is that rest in glory which remains for the people of God; therefore the moral obligation of the sabbath must continue, till time is swallowed up in eternity.See Numbers 15:32-36. The distinction between the meaning of the two expressions, "to be cut off from the people", and "to be put to death", is here indicated. He who was cut off from the people had, by his offence, put himself out of the terms of the covenant, and was an outlaw. On such, and on such alone, when the offence was one which affected the well-being of the nation, as it was in this case, death could be inflicted by the public authority.12-17. Verily my sabbaths ye shall keep—The reason for the fresh inculcation of the fourth commandment at this particular period was, that the great ardor and eagerness, with which all classes betook themselves to the construction of the tabernacle, exposed them to the temptation of encroaching on the sanctity of the appointed day of rest. They might suppose that the erection of the tabernacle was a sacred work, and that it would be a high merit, an acceptable tribute, to prosecute the undertaking without the interruption of a day's repose; and therefore the caution here given, at the commencement of the undertaking, was a seasonable admonition. The sabbath of rest, Heb. the sabbath of sabbaths, or, of sabbaths, i.e. the great and chief sabbath, as the song of songs is the most excellent song, the holy of holies is the most holy, &c. The Jews had many sabbaths or days of rest, but this is here preferred before them all, by this emphatical repetition of the same word; and by this argument the foregoing duty is pressed upon them. Six days may work be done;.... Allowed to be done by an Israelite, if he would; for this is not a command to work, but a permission or grant to do it; and therefore, seeing they had so many days granted them for their use, it could not be thought hard and unreasonable that God should claim one day in seven for his own use and service, and oblige them to refrain from work on it:

but in the seventh is the sabbath of rest; from worldly labour, and was typical of spiritual rest here, and eternal rest hereafter:

holy to the Lord; separated from other days, and entirely devoted to the worship and service of God, and to be kept holy to the Lord in all holy and religious exercises, as hearing and reading the word, praying, praising, &c.

whosoever doeth any work in the sabbath day, he shall surely be put to death; the Targum of Jonathan adds, by casting stones, and so we find that the first transgressor of this law we read of was stoned to death, Numbers 15:35.

Six days may work be done; but in the seventh is the sabbath of rest, holy to the LORD: whosoever doeth any work in the sabbath day, he shall surely be put to death.
15. How the sabbath is to be observed, viz. by cessation from work. Cf. Exodus 20:9 f.

a sabbath of entire rest] So Exodus 35:2, Leviticus 23:3 al.: see on Exodus 16:23.Verse 15. - The sabbath of rest. Rather, "a sabbath." There were other sabbaths besides that of the seventh day (Exodus 23:11; Leviticus 25:2-12; etc.). By the expression, "a sabbath of rest" - literally, "a rest of resting" - the idea of completeness is given. Perhaps the best translation would be - "in the seventh is complete rest." There were associated with Bezaleel as assistants, Oholiab, the son of Achisamach, of the tribe of Dan, and other men endowed with understanding, whom God had filled with wisdom for the execution of His work. According to Exodus 38:23, Oholiab was both faber, a master in metal, stone, and wood work, and also an artistic weaver of colours. In Exodus 38:7-11, the words to be executed, which have been minutely described in ch. 24-30, are mentioned singly once more; and, in addition to these, we find in Exodus 31:10 השּׂרד בּגדי mentioned, along with, or rather before, the holy dress of Aaron. This is the case also in Exodus 35:19 and Exodus 39:41, where there is also the additional clause, "to serve (שׁרת ministrare) in the sanctuary." They were composed, according to Exodus 39:1, of blue and red purple, and crimson. The meaning of the word serad, which only occurs in these passages, is quite uncertain. The Rabbins understand by the bigde hasserad the wrappers in which the vessels of the sanctuary were enclosed when the camp was broken up, as these are called begadim of blue and red purple, and crimson, in Numbers 4:6. But this rendering is opposed to the words which follow, and which indicate their use in the holy service, i.e., in the performance of worship, and therefore are quite inapplicable to the wrappers referred to. There is even less ground for referring them, as Gesenius and others do, to the inner curtains of the tabernacle, or the inner hangings of the dwelling-place. For, apart from the uncertainty of the rendering given to serad, viz., netted cloth, filet, it is overthrown by the fact that these curtains of the dwelling-place were not of net-work; and still more decisively by the order in which the bigde hasserad occur in Exodus 39:41, viz., not till the dwelling-place and tent, and everything belonging to them, have been mentioned, even down to the hangings of the court and the pegs of the tent, and all that remains to be noticed is the clothing of the priests. From the definition "to serve in the sanctuary," it is obvious that the bigde serad were clothes used in the worship, στολαὶ λειτουργικαί, as the lxx have rendered it in agreement with the rest of the ancient versions-that they were, in fact, the rich robes which constituted the official dress of the high priest, whilst "the holy garments for Aaron" were the holy clothes which were worn by him in common with the priests.
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