Many of us have wondered at one point or another, “Do Christians still keep the Sabbath?” But maybe, a better way to ask it is: “Do Christians still need rest?” Of course, we all know, in a world where we are juggling a million different things and constantly feel starved for time, we most certainly do need rest. How do we get rest?

In Genesis 2:2,3, after God created the universe, “He rested from all his work. Then God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because on it he rested from all the work of creating that he had done.” God did not rest because He needed to rest. God was not exhausted.  God rested to show us how important it is to build rest into our weekly calendars. God knew that all people need rest.

God gives us a whole day of rest. It is one of The Ten Commandments.  It literally means “to stop all work.” (Pete Scazzero, Emotionally Healthy Spirituality).  Rest starts when we stop.

During Jesus’ earthly ministry, Jesus appears to violate the Sabbath but He didn’t.  He was really calling us back to the true purpose of the Sabbath.

In Mark 2: 27-28, then [Jesus] said to them, “The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath. So the Son of Man is Lord even of the Sabbath.”

Jesus was saying, the Sabbath is not about following religious rules or human traditions. The Sabbath is a day of rest for our benefit! Our world is full of hurry, worry, stress, and demands.  God foresaw this part of our culture and gave us a day to separate ourselves from it so that we could be restored through rest.  Is it easy to put aside our to-do list for one day a week?  Of course not.  But is it necessary?  Absolutely!

In the Old Testament, God made Sabbath a Commandment. In the New Testament, God reminds us, “There remains, then, a Sabbath-rest for the people of God; 10 for anyone who enters God’s rest also rests from their works, just as God did from his. 11 Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest.” (Hebrews 4:9-11)  The Lord wants us to rest for our good, so that we can take on the rest of the week feeling restored, refreshed, and ready to be his light in the world!

Practical Tips

Find a day to prioritize rest that works for your family on a weekly basis.

Reschedule work and household tasks to be completed on a different day.

Remove things from your schedule that day that aren’t essential to you or your family.

On your day of rest, make it a point to do things that are worshipful, delightful, and restful. If it’s delightful to eat out, take a break from cooking and order your favorite Chinese food. It’s restful to read a book, pick up a novel. If you reconnect with God in silence or by taking a walk with worship music, then find a way to reconnect with the Father. Remember – God desires to give us a day of rest for us!

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