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Joined: 2004/10/13
Posts: 2132

 Re: how to???

I belong to a denomination that is almost legalistic in its approach to the sabbath.This has been a source of some dissagreements in the past.I tend to esteem all days the same but as to my personal disciplines I do set aside a day to do nothing but center on the Lord in my devotion and full attention. That day isn't sunday though.I've always struggled in giving an answer to this question about the sabbath though.


 2004/11/30 16:47Profile

Joined: 2002/12/11
Posts: 37454
"Pilgrim and Sojourner." - 1 Peter 2:11


[b]And having spoiled principalities and powers, he made a shew of them openly, triumphing over them in it.  Let no man therefore judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of an holyday, or of the new moon, or of the sabbath days : Which are a shadow of things to come; but the body is of Christ.[/b] (Colossians 2:15-17 KJV).


SI Moderator - Greg Gordon

 2004/11/30 21:18Profile

Joined: 2003/7/18
Posts: 6566
Reading, UK

 Re: keep it holy... within thy gates.

[b] Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work: But the seventh day is the sabbath of the LORD thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is [u]within thy gates[/u]: 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. [/b](Exo 20:8-11 KJV)

The Sabbath day was specifically instituted within the Sinai Covenant and was community based. These laws were given to a community rather than to individuals and the Sabbath legislation makes this very plain. Its sphere of application is ‘within thy gates’ i.e. this is to be implemented on a city-wide bases. According to a Talmudic view if the Jews would only keep the Shabbat properly for two consecitive weeks, they would bring about the messianic Redemption.

In some ways it is only possible to remember Sabbath on a city-wide basis. I may refuse to collect my milk on the Sabbath but the cow may well have been milked on the Sabbath. I may refuse to read my newspaper on the Sabbath and only take the Sunday version, but is such a case I am enjoying the labours of someone who broke the Sabbath. In a city/town based society it was literally possible to shut down everything for the day. Sabbath was viable in an exclusion zone of family or city but in a mixed community, as the most public sign of 'Jewishness' it was always contentious. Within that exclusion zone the stranger was required to conform to Sabbath.

Strict Jews will try to implement this by various means, using time-switches rather than creating a spark with a manual switch and thereby ‘lighting a fire’ on the Sabbath. Sabbath, however, requires the whole community commitment to be workable. In fact it is only genuinely possible in a theocracy. Where state and church are separate it can never function properly. Israel was such a theocracy, but most of us do not live in such a setting.

If a ‘Jew’ were enslaved by a gentile there would be no way in which he could ‘keep Sabbath’ but on the other hand if a gentile were enslaved by a ‘Jew’ the Jew was required to ensure that the gentile slave kept Sabbath. It is only where the local authority (whether in a home or a city) is theocratic that Sabbath could operate. It has been estimated that the slave population of Italy was in the proportion of 1:2 or approximately 33% of the population. One calculation is that during the Herodian period there were about 8m Jews in the world, of whom 2.35-2.5m lived in Palestine, the Jews thus constituting about 10% of the Roman Empire.

It is interesting where Sabbath comes in the list. The commandments prior to this are all God-orientated while those after this are people orientated. If we were to divide the commandments up into Godwards and manwards where would be place Sabbath? The standard interpretation was that it was Godwards, but Christ challenged this and put it in the manwards list; [b] And he said unto them, The sabbath was made for man, and not man for the sabbath: Therefore the Son of man is Lord also of the sabbath. [/b] (Mar 2:27-28 KJV)

The notion of holiness is also important. The original concept of qadesh/holy is separation. The people of Israel were set apart to be God’s own possession, hence [b] And ye shall be unto me a kingdom of priests, and an holy nation. These are the words which thou shalt speak unto the children of Israel. [/b] (Exo 19:6 KJV) It is important to remember that the purpose of the Sabbath was the well being of people and it was to be regarded, not so much as an imposition, but a relief. That it became a burden is clear, and this necessitated the prophet’s word which promised blessing under conditions which included; [b] If thou turn away thy foot from the sabbath, from doing thy pleasure on my holy day; and [u]call the sabbath a delight[/u], the holy of the LORD, honourable; and shalt honour him, not doing thine own ways, nor finding thine own pleasure, nor speaking thine own words: [/b] (Isa 58:13 KJV)

The Sabbath was the outward sign of this ‘holy people’; [b] Speak thou also unto the children of Israel, saying, Verily ye shall keep my sabbaths: for it is a sign between me and you throughout your generations; that ye may know that I am Jehovah who sanctifieth you. [/b] (Exo 31:13 ASV) - see also Ezek 20:12,20.

The question that remains is ‘is there a Christian equivalent of the Sabbath?’ Where is the principle of Sabbath to be recognized in Christianity?

Ron Bailey

 2004/12/1 3:39Profile

Joined: 2003/7/28
Posts: 404
Watford, UK


The question that remains is ‘is there a Christian equivalent of the Sabbath?’ Where is the principle of Sabbath to be recognized in Christianity?

I believe our "Sabbath rest" is in Christ:

Hebrews 4
1 Let us therefore fear, lest, a promise being left us of entering into his rest, any of you should seem to come short of it.
2 For unto us was the gospel preached, as well as unto them: but the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard it.
3 For we which have believed do enter into rest, as he said, As I have sworn in my wrath, if they shall enter into my rest: although the works were finished from the foundation of the world.
4 For he spake in a certain place of the seventh day on this wise, And God did rest the seventh day from all his works.
5 And in this place again, If they shall enter into my rest.
6 Seeing therefore it remaineth that some must enter therein, and they to whom it was first preached entered not in because of unbelief:
7 Again, he limiteth a certain day, saying in David, To day, after so long a time; as it is said, To day if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts.
8 For if Jesus had given them rest, then would he not afterward have spoken of another day.
9 There remaineth therefore a rest to the people of God.
10 For he that is entered into his rest, he also hath ceased from his own works, as God did from his.
11 Let us labour therefore to enter into that rest, lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief.
12 For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.

Mark Nash

 2004/12/1 5:52Profile

Joined: 2004/10/13
Posts: 2132

 Re: all of you-- thank you

I 've considered this from Hebrews and even put it forward but to no staisfication to the hearers. Some traditions are hard for people to give up or break.I guess the fear is that if people don't feel some sort of pressure,(in a legalistic sense), they won't come to church on Sundays. So Ron's question is key, where does the sabbath fit in on the christian church and when in many churches they're meeting 4 and sometimes 5 times a week , where does the individual draw the line in the assemblying of our selves together?


 2004/12/2 19:18Profile

Joined: 2003/9/30
Posts: 386
Toronto, Ontario, Canada


1. It seems the NT focusses more on Sunday ("the first of seven days" and "the Lord's Day"), which I suppose symbolically represents the day of the Lord's resurrection. That's why the breaking of bread (Christian worship) and preaching seems to be associated with this day at several instances.

2. I see no conscious connection of the Lord's day (Sunday) with the OT Sabbath day within the NT. I would hesitate to say that the Lord's day is the new Sabbath day for Christians. I tend to think that the significance of the Lord's day was derived from the unique event of Christ's death and resurrection.

3. If we understand keeping the Sabbath as the identity marker of being a Jew as part of the covenant people of God, then it might explain why Hebrews effectively said that Christ is the fulfillment of Sabbath. Our true identity is found in Christ, who leads us to genuine rest intended by God.

4. Nevertheless, I feel that the [i]principle[/i] of sabbath can certainly be applied by Christians in a more universal and general way. I think it is theologically significant that God established in the creation account the rhythm of work six days, and rest on the seventh. Modern people tends to be workaholics, much to their detriment because they violated God's rhythm in nature. Obviously, setting aside time exclusively for God is part of God's pattern too.

Just some quick thoughts... I don't think I introduced any [i]new[/i] idea not discussed before in this forum?


 2004/12/6 14:37Profile

Joined: 2004/2/12
Posts: 4636
Independence, Missouri


much to their detriment because they violated God's rhythm in nature

Does anyone know if there is a thread on SI that deals with Natural Law? It would be a good discussion topic. :-)

God Bless,


Robert Wurtz II

 2004/12/6 15:09Profile

Joined: 2004/10/13
Posts: 2132

 Re: a study

I did read a medical study some time ago on work and rest where they put forth illnesses as a result of over working and lack of proper rest and balance.When I read on the Welsh revival and Evan Roberts fall out, it would seem to me that in a religious sense he may not have taken time apart or away inorder to rest his body and mind. Like you I believe at least 1 day is important per week but not in a legallistic sense.Priciple of the Sabbath----I agree too , and that seems to be consistant with Hebrews "not forsakeing the assemblying of yourselves together". It seems that I read in Eusebuis' work on ecclesiastical history he mentions the habit of the roman church as meeting sat. after night fall andmeetings going through the nite.They would then go out in the morning and minister to the needs of thoughs drunkards sleeping it off in the streets of rome.And since many of the New converts were legally slaves an evening meeting seems probable.


 2004/12/6 15:47Profile

Joined: 2003/6/3
Posts: 4803


Isn't it amazing how threads continue to rise up in different aspects which focus on God's provision for His people. In terms of REST, in the Jewish roots thread, everyone seems to have avoided answering the question for themselves. God did offer His REST to those who lived before Christ's incarnation.

What do these Scritpures suggest in terms of hallowing God's Sabbath?

Is. 56:1 Thus says the LORD:
“Keep justice, and do righteousness,
For My salvation is about to come,
And My righteousness to be revealed.
2 Blessed is the man who does this,
And the son of man who lays hold on it;
Who keeps from defiling the Sabbath,
And keeps his hand from doing any evil.”
3 Do not let the son of the foreigner
Who has joined himself to the LORD
Speak, saying,
“The LORD has utterly separated me from His people”;
Nor let the eunuch say,
“Here I am, a dry tree.”
4 For thus says the LORD:
“To the eunuchs who keep My Sabbaths,
And choose what pleases Me,
And hold fast My covenant,
5 Even to them I will give in My house
And within My walls a place and a name
Better than that of sons and daughters;
I will give them an everlasting name
That shall not be cut off.
6 “Also the sons of the foreigner
Who join themselves to the LORD, to serve Him,
And to love the name of the LORD, to be His servants—
Everyone who keeps from defiling the Sabbath,
And holds fast My covenant—
7 Even them I will bring to My holy mountain,
And make them joyful in My house of prayer.
Their burnt offerings and their sacrifices
Will be accepted on My altar;
For My house shall be called a house of prayer for all nations.”

Also: Isaiah 58:

11 The LORD will guide you continually,
And satisfy your soul in drought,
And strengthen your bones;
You shall be like a watered garden,
And like a spring of water, whose waters do not fail.
12 Those from among you
Shall build the old waste places;
You shall raise up the foundations of many generations;
And you shall be called the Repairer of the Breach,
The Restorer of Streets to Dwell In.
13 “If you turn away your foot from the Sabbath,
From doing your pleasure on My holy day,
And call the Sabbath a delight,
The holy day of the LORD honorable,
And shall honor Him, not doing your own ways,
Nor finding your own pleasure,
Nor speaking your own words,
14 Then you shall delight yourself in the LORD;
And I will cause you to ride on the high hills of the earth,
And feed you with the heritage of Jacob your father.
The mouth of the LORD has spoken.”

How does the Lord accomplish this in those who honor His Sabbath? And to whom are these words addressed too?

In Christ

Jeff Marshalek

 2004/12/7 11:29Profile

Joined: 2004/2/12
Posts: 4636
Independence, Missouri


Hi Bro. Jeff,

There may have been some sort of 'rest' that the people experienced who were heirs of salvation; but there was a deliverance that took place at the Cross and the resurrection that brought a new level of rest to the people. Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil; And deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage. There is a bondage that existed under the Old Covenant in which the people were afraid to die. We are also told there remains a rest to the people of God. That statement has a lot of eschatological ramifications; but I think we can see clearly that we under the New Covenant have a 'rest' in the here and now that those who were all their lifetime in fear did not have.

God Bless,


Robert Wurtz II

 2004/12/7 12:13Profile

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