Sabbath / Shabbat / 7th Day = Day of rest
*Disclaimer: I am NOT an Seventh Day Adventist nor a Jew, nor do I associate with any denomination / church. I am a believer of the Word, and the fullness of it - in context. You are more than welcome to differ from me. I'm not here to convince anyone of anything. Ultimately, we'll all be judged by the Righteous Judge for our own choices - as we all have a free will to choose what we perceive as the truth.
I'm not writing this post to condemn anyone. I am writing this because I have walked this road. I once was the very religious girl who attended church diligently and argued that it doesn't matter what day we keep the sabbath. So this post is NOT intended to condemn anyone. I have been right there where some of you might be right now. And some of you reading this might have known the truth all along. Regardless of your journey, may Abba take my words through His purifying fire - and let only that's pleasing to Him pierce your hearts. Yeshua IS the Truth, the Way and the LlFE!
The Bible isn't written only for preachers, pastors & rabbi's to understand. It's written for each one of us. And the more we dig into His Word, the more we will learn from His character and His heart for His people. And the more His Truth will convict us. (Ps: conviction is NOT the same as condemnation.)
Before we go into the spiritual/Biblical side of things. Let's just clear the air about Saturday vs Sunday. Which is the actual sabbath and does it really matter?
As always, I ask you to go ask Google. It surely doesn't have all the answers - but it does offer some valuable insight sometimes.
So head on over to Google and type in "origin of Sunday worship" - come one. Go do it, you can come back here afterwards. Because you'll probably not be convinced unless you see it for yourself!
The days of the week in the Bible were know as the first day, the second day, the third day, etc... We NEVER read about Monday or Saturday or any other day in the Bible. If you do, you'd better check your translation because it's probably not Scripturally sound. The names of the days of the week originated from the Roman culture.
At the time of Yeshua (Jesus Christ), ONLY pagans worshiped their gods on Sunday. True Christians worshiped the true God on Saturday. Jesus preached on the Sabbath. And after His crucifixion, the apostles continued to follow His example - when preaching to both the Jews and the Gentiles. (Luke 4:16 | Acts 13:42). Back then, believers continued to obey God's commandment to keep the seventh day as the Sabbath of the Lord, as instructed.
During the second century, some Christians desired to blend in to the pagan society and thus also began to worship on Sundays. May I remind you that we are not called to blend in. The Scripture is VERY clear about it that we should be SET APART for HIM!
In Roman culture, Sunday was named after the sun god. In pagan theology, the sun was the source of life, giving warmth and light to mankind. We know that Yeshua (Jesus) is the Way, the Truth and the LIFE. Not the sun. It was custom tradition for pagans to stand at dawn to catch the first rays of sunshine and then prayed to their gods (the sun).
Round about 321 AD, the Roman Empire Constantine I, made a decree that worship on any other day than Sunday was illegal. The Catholic Church were the ones who pushed this agenda and the Roman Empire enforced it.
There is NO scriptural authority for true believers to worship on Sunday! The Roman Catholic Church instituted Sunday worship to distance itself from biblical Christianity and gain pagan converts. So those who worship on Sunday are essentially saying the pope has the authority to change the Word of God!
For the sake of time, I'm not going into further detail about Sunday and when the world changed the Sabbath to Sunday. I encourage you to do some more research on this yourselves. Fact of the matter, is Sunday is NOT the Sabbath. It's a lie straight from the enemy's camp. And if we call ourselves believers, we should be worshiping God in Spirit and in Truth!
We need to get back to worship God the way He instructed us to and not the way the world told us to!
In order to understand the concepts of the Bible, we should always go back to the first time that concept was mentioned in Scripture. Always interpret Scripture with Scripture.
Abba created the feasts (which includes Shabbat) before He created man. In Gen 1:14 we read that the sun, moon & stars will serve as signs for appointed / set times, seasons & years. The word used in the original Hebrew is the word "mohadim" meaning seasons, set times or appointed times, rhythm.
Shabbat has nothing to do with the law and everything to do with the creation. It has to do with God's rhythm. It has to do with LIGHT!
In 1 John 5 we read that God is Light. The sun, moon and stars tells is something about God. To understand the rhythm of God's mohadim - we have to understand days and years from a Biblical perspective.
We know days as 24 hour periods. And a hour is a 60 minute period. And every minute consists of 60 seconds. But NOWHERE in the Bible we read about minutes and seconds. Just like we never read about the days of the week (as we know them today) in the Bible.
We live on a Gregorian calendar, in which scientist have divided time according to degrees. In the Bible we read about day and night. Both of them was 12 hours long. So how long was a hour in the Bible? "Day" was the 12 hours which it was light. And "Night" was the 12 hours which it was dark. In Gen 1:3-5 we read “And God said, Let there be light: and there was light. And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness. And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day.” Darkness covered the earth, until God spoke light into existence. A day according to the Bible starts at sunset and ends the next sunset (one period of darkness + one period of light).
The Bible wasn't written according to the Gregorian calendar we use today. The Gregorian calendar is less than 500 years old! We thus cannot try to understand the Bible from a Gregorian perspective. We need to go back to the Bible to determine what "time" meant in the Bible and at the time of creation.
We as humans made time "fixed"... In the Bible time was never fixed. When we read in the Bible about the third hour, it's not 3 o'clock. It means the time of light split into 12 "hours". In other words, 3 hours of light.
We try to understand the Bible from our worldly concept & understanding of time. But we'll never be able to understand the Bible with this perspective.
Years consist of days, weeks & months (obviously haha). Biblically every day's length differs from one another - depending on how the earth moves closer and further away from the sun.
A week is 6 days + 1 day. The 7the day being the Sabbath.
The first time we read about the sabbath / day of rest is in Gen 2.
“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. And God blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it: because that in it He had rested from all His work which God created and made.”
Genesis 2:1-3 KJV
The original Hebrew word used in Gen 2:2 for "rest" was וישבת (pronounced: vayishbot).
It's only used twice in the Bible - here and in Joshua 5:12
The original Hebrew word used in Gen 2:3 for "rest" was שבת (pronounced: sabat).
The word sabat / shabbat / sabbath is used multiple times in the Bible.
Strongs Exhaustive Concordance
Original Word: שָׁבַת
Transliteration: shabath (Phonetic Spelling: shaw-bath')
Part of Speech: Verb
Definition: to cease, desist, rest
More Scripture confirming the Shabbat: (Please go study these on your own time)
Ex 16:23 | Ex 16:30 | Ex 20:11 | Ex 23:13 | Ex 31:15 | Ex 34:21 | Ex 35:2
Ex 31:17 states that it (shabbat) will be a sign (to the world) between God and His people.
Lev 16:31 states that it (shabbat) will be a statue (of effect) forever!
Important to remember that when the New Testament (NT) was written - the believers already had the Old Testament (OT). Thus what was written in the OT was common knowledge. It was established and didn't have to be repeated in the NT. We need to read the NT through OT glasses and not the other way around!
More Scripture to dive into:
Lev 23:3 | Deut 5:14 | 1 Kings 8:56
Deut 12:9 states that there's a blessing / inheritance involved when we rest (שבת) in Him!
1 Kings 8:56 "Blessed be the LORD, that hath given rest (שבת) unto his people Israel, according to all that he promised: there hath not failed one word of all his good promise, which he promised by the hand of Moses his servant."
1 Chron 23:25 “For David said, The LORD God of Israel hath given rest unto his people, that they may dwell in Jerusalem for ever:”
We as the body of Christ are the "new Jerusalem." Through Yeshua (Jesus) we can dwell in Abba's presence.
Even MORE Scripture:
Neh 10:28 | Job 11:18 | Ps 55:6 | Ps 95:11 | Prov 14:33 | Prov 19:23 | Isa 30:15
Jer 6:16 “Thus saith the LORD, Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls. But they said, We will not walk therein.”
This Scripture speaks about the ancient / old paths. This ancient way that Scripture refers to is the way that God instructed His people to follow. It's the good way, the right way. And it's the way that will bring rest for our souls. And it's our choice whether we will walk in those ancient paths / way or will we change direction and follow our own ways.
In Matt 11:28-29 Yeshua says “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.” True rest can only be found in Yeshua.
Many people argue that it the Sabbath doesn't matter any more or that it's "Old Testament." But there are several places in the New Testament where it's clear that the commandment still stands - to keep the sabbath.
Luke 23:56 is an example. In Luke 23:56 we read about the crucifixion. We read how the women kept the Sabbath even when Yeshua was crucified. Let that sink in. When the Saviour of the world was crucified, the Sabbath was still to be kept! It's Abba's instruction. And nothing has changed since.
Anything and everything that's not in line with Scripture is sin! This is not my opinion. The Bible says so. Disobedience is sin. In Hebrews 3:18 we read that those who are disobedient (to the Word) will not enter His rest. It's of double significance don't you think? Because being disobedient (regardless the sin) keeps you out of rest. But not honoring rest (Sabbath) is also disobedience, a.k.a sin.
Please take the time to go and study Hebrews chapters 3 & 4. I'm only sharing Heb 4:9-11 (PS: New Testament) here:
“So there remains a [full and complete] Sabbath rest for the people of God. For the one who has once entered His rest has also rested from [the weariness and pain of] his [human] labors, just as God rested from [those labors uniquely] His own. Let us therefore make every effort to enter that rest [of God, to know and experience it for ourselves], so that no one will fall by following the same example of disobedience [as those who died in the wilderness].”
Also go read 1 Peter 4:1-2 (New Testament again). It’s our choice whether we'll continue to live within the sin of our flesh or if we will turn back to Abba and get in line with His instructions.
In Gen 2 we read that God rested. He finished His work - the CREATION - through resting.
Yet we as mortal dust particles think that we're superior to rest & keeping Shabbat. Wow, the first time that penny dropped for me, I cried in my hands! To think that I thought I didn't have to honour it any longer. As if I am superior.
As I wrote earlier as well, I'm writing this post - because I, myself have walked this road. I'm not judging anyone. However, now that I have tasted the Truth - I cannot keep quiet!
When we've had a challenging week, we're all so thankful when Friday comes - because we NEED the rest. What's important to realise is that God didn't rest on the seventh day because He "needed" to. God doesn't need rest, He doesn’t get tired and doesn’t need a break. The rest was not to rest as we know it in modern day society. It was to complete His work - resting in Him and what He has done! We have to rest in Him & what He has done for each one of us in our lives!
Go read the following Scriptures:
Gen 17 | Ps 147:5 | Isa 40:28 | Gen 1:1-3 | Heb 1:3 | Ps 33:9
These are only a few Scriptures of many - describing Who He is! The entire universe is held together by God's words!!! He spoke things into existence. He doesn't need rest like we as mortal humans do. Yet He kept shabbat. Then surely there must be something more to shabbat than simply “chilling it out.”
The Hebrew word for shabbat (שבת) does not mean "resting because you are tired." It means to cease / to stop. On other words, God "stopped" His work / He "ceased" creating. Each and everything which He created was good and His work was finished. It was a purposeful stop! Everything which He desired to make was done & it was good. Instead of doing more, He ceased.
Can you see the contrast between what God did and how our lives look today? God didn't rest because He was tired, He stopped because He was done. It was complete! Unless we learn to enter His rest, we'll never complete anything!
Shabbat isn't something that churches / religious people created along the way. Shabbat is part of the creation! It's been there right from the start. Shabbat is about harmony. Getting back into the rhythm of the Abba's heartbeat.
Shabbat is about love. It's a marriage, a covenant. It's about worshiping God the way He instructed us to - not the way we decided or the way the world does. A marriage covenant is not between you and the world. It's between you and your spouse. We are Yeshua's bride! When we keep Shabbat, we should spend it in His presence! Seeking His face!
The enemy comes with the religious lie that we don't have to do anything, because Yeshua did it all on the cross already. Shabbat is NOT a salvation matter. I won't be saved because I'm keeping the Sabbath. I am saved because Yeshua died on the cross for me and I have accepted what He has done for me. I am saved by His Blood. BUT because He loved me from even before I was formed in my mother's womb - I WANT to love Him back. And therefore I WANT to obey His instructions. It's not law, it's love. It has nothing to do with my salvation, but everything to do with my love for Him! God honours obedience. When we walk according to His ways, we will be blessed. It's a Biblical principle.
Shabbat is about blessing. When we obey God's instructions, He'll bless us. And in the same way when we are keeping Shabbat, we should bless our family members, in the Name of Yeshua. Just imagine the difference over a child's life if they get blessed every week on Shabbat. There is no other way but for that child to make impact wherever they go. The blessing they carry cannot be contained. That's not legalistic. It's Biblical!
We keep the appointed times (mohadim) as best we can and as we learn more and more about it. The appointed times all point to Yeshua the Messiah. Yeshua Himself kept these appointed times when He was on earth and we are called to follow in His footsteps.
Go read the following Scripture:
Matt 16:24-26 | Mark 8:34-37 | Luke 14:23-25
Yeshua did NOT abolish the law - which includes the appointed times. Matt 5:17 says “Think not that I came to destroy the law, or the prophets; I did not come to destroy but to fulfill.”
John 14:15 says “If you love Me, keep My commandments.”
Keeping the Sabbath - as instructed, not as the world does is one of the commandments.
““Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord your God. In it you shall do no work: you, nor your son, nor your daughter, nor your male servant, nor your female servant, nor your cattle, nor your stranger who is within your gates. For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and hallowed it.”
In other words, the way we choose to keep the Sabbath reflects our love for Yeshua. It’s as simple as that.
The feasts of the Bible / Yeshua’s feasts unlock several truths. They are key in understanding prophetic events mentioned in the Bible and explain a whole lot of the plan and purpose of Yeshua’s second coming. Abba incorporated His mohadim / appointed times into creation. He has given us instructions in the Bible on how He wants to be worshiped.
Shabbat is about purposefully making time to rest. In the rat race of life, we tire our minds and bodies. And we physically and mentally NEED the rest. Mark 2:27-28 says that the "Sabbath was made for man, and not man for the Sabbath." The Sabbath don't need us. But we need the Sabbath. When we rest by not doing physical labour and meditating on the Word of God - He will restore us physically, mentally, emotionally, spiritually and on all other levels. Keeping Shabbat is one of the first love principles. Yeshua is our First Love - above anything and everything else.
When we keep Shabbat we say that we purposefully put Yeshua first. When we put Him first, He will bless us and give us wisdom and revelation. Resting on Shabbat / keeping it means that we abide in His blessing.
We can continue much longer on this topic, but it's not my heart, nor my job to convince anyone of anything. I am merely planting a seed in obedience. If you have any questions, you are more than welcome to ask. I can't guarantee that I'll have all the answers - I'm also still unlearning and learning - but I'll try to help you as much as I can and point you to people and information that will be able to help you.
As I always say - please don't just take my word for it. Go do your own research & press in with Abba, He WILL reveal His heart to you. Leave your flesh at the door and enter in!
He's waiting for you with arms stretched out wide!
Links to helpful teachings:
Crosswalk: What is the Sabbath and is it still important today? - https://www.crosswalk.com/faith/spiritual-life/what-is-the-sabbath-and-is-it-still-important-today.html
English Live: The origins behind the English weekdays - https://englishlive.ef.com/blog/language-lab/origins-behind-english-weekday-names/
Kol Kallah: Hebrew Festivals & My Relationship with the Father - https://kolkallah.com/portfolio-item/the-hebrew-festivals-and-my-relationship-with-god/
Land of Honey: 15 things Scripture says about Shabbat -https://landofhoneyblog.blogspot.com/2020/07/fifteen-things-scripture-says-about.html
Land of Honey: Several teachings on Shabbat - https://landofhoneyblog.blogspot.com/p/shabbat.html
Life Hope and Truth: Who changed the day of worship from Saturday to Sunday? Why? - https://lifehopeandtruth.com/bible/10-commandments/sabbath/saturday-sunday/
Menorah Tabernakel: Verstaan ons Shabbat reg? Deel 1 - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9nDo5qCb8bY
Menorah Tabernakel: Verstaan ons Shabbat reg? Deel 2 - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zLj-vWwvTgc
Philadelphia Church of God: Is there anything wrong with Sunday worship? - https://pcg.church/articles/5591/is-there-anything-wrong-with-sunday-worship
Pursuing Emet: The Biblical Sabbath - https://www.instagram.com/p/ChNpFGSJfVQ/?igshid=YmMyMTA2M2Y=
The Trumpet: Which day is the Christian Sabbath? by Herbert W Armstrong - https://www.thetrumpet.com/literature/books_and_booklets/42