Thus the heavens and the earth were finished, and all the host of them. And on the seventh day God ended his work which he had made; and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had made. Genesis 2:1, 2.
Human philosophy declares that an indefinite period of time was taken in the creation of the world. Does God state the matter thus? No; He says, “It is a sign between me and the children of Israel for ever; for in six days [not six indefinite periods of time, for then there would be no possible way for us to observe the day specified in the fourth commandment] the Lord made heaven and earth, and on the seventh day he rested, and was refreshed.” Please read carefully the fifth chapter of Deuteronomy. God says again, “Remember [do not forget] the sabbath day, to keep it holy.... For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the Lord blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it.”
Yet with the living oracles before them, those who claim to preach the Word present the suppositions of human minds, the maxims and commandments of humans. They make void the law of God by their traditions. The sophistry in regard to the world’s being created in an indefinite period of time is one of Satan’s falsehoods. God speaks to the human family in language they can comprehend. He does not leave the matter so indefinite that human beings can handle it according to their theories. When the Lord declares that He made the world in six days and rested on the seventh day, He means the day of twenty-four hours, which He has marked off by the rising and setting of the sun.
God would not pronounce the death sentence for a disregard of the Sabbath unless He had presented before His people a clear understanding of the Sabbath.... When the foundation of the earth was laid, the foundation of the Sabbath was laid also. When the morning stars sang together and all the sons of God shouted for joy, God saw that a Sabbath was essential for Adam and Eve, even in Paradise. In giving them the Sabbath, God considered their spiritual and physical health.
God made the world in six literal days, and on the seventh literal day He rested from all His work which He had done, and was refreshed. So He has given human beings six days in which to labor.... By thus setting apart the Sabbath, God gave the world a memorial. He did not set apart one day and any day in seven, but one particular day, the seventh day. And by observing the Sabbath, we show that we recognize God as the living God, the Creator of heaven and earth.—Letter 31, 1898.