• Michael Haldas

Sabbath (Rest)


“God finished the making of heaven and earth for man's sake. He rested from His creative activity on the seventh day to show His love and providential care for man, and to invite man to enjoy this Sabbath-rest. For as Jesus said, “The Sabbath was made for man, and not man for the Sabbath” (Mk 2:27). Man failed to keep this Sabbath-rest. But Jesus fulfilled it for man by resting in the tomb on Great and Holy Saturday, after He said on the cross, “It is finished” (Jn 19:30). For He destroyed sin and death, and rose again on the first day of the week. Through His saving work on man's behalf, He is man's Sabbath-rest, and He now invites all to find rest in Himself (Mt 11:28–30).” (Orthodox Study Bible, Genesis 2:1-3)

“For some time now we have lived in a culture where the Sabbath day, Sunday, is just another day. Nothing is different or set apart. Stores are open and people shop (it also means adults who work in these stores must work even though they may prefer to be in church). Kid’s sporting and other events and activities are scheduled for Sunday mornings and throughout the day. Even those of us who go to church often rush to leave right after service for some sort of obligation. Pace and busyness dominate the Sabbath like any other day. In many ways this is a manifestation of our broken communion with God that began in Eden. Thankfully we have a loving God who understands all of this and continuously offers us love, mercy, and a way back to Him despite what we do to ourselves.” (Sacramental Living Ministries)

“I read somewhere that God made the day twenty four hours long—eight hours to work, eight hours to rest, and eight hours for family, house, relaxation, hobbies, exercise, and spirituality. We’ve tinkered with that formula so that now many people work more than eight hours, sleep much less than eight hours and family time, relaxation, exercise, hobbies, and spirituality are getting squeezed out. God also “commanded” us to remember the Sabbath, to have a day of rest, to worship and to be with our families. It is one of the Ten Commandments. Again, we have tinkered with that as well, which no doubt has contributed to the continued decline of the family unit, and increase in personal stress.” (Fr. Stavros N. Akrotirianakis)

“Your own heart, or our materialistic culture, or an exploitative organization, or all of the above, will be abusing you if you don’t have the ability to be disciplined in your practice of Sabbath. Sabbath is therefore a declaration of our freedom. It means you are not a slave—not to your culture’s expectations, your family’s hopes, your medical school’s demands, not even to your own insecurities. It is important that you learn to speak this truth to yourself with a note of triumph—otherwise you will feel guilty for taking time off, or you will be unable to truly unplug.” (Pastor Timothy Keller)

“…when Christ our Lord first exorcises a man on the Sabbath (vss. 1:21-26), He sets a notable precedent for His ministry: He will place human needs ahead of pious practice….Our human needs will always take precedence over the godly rules…for in Jesus’ words “the Sabbath was made for man, and not man for the Sabbath” (Mark 2:27). As we read the four Gospels, we are struck by Jesus’ deep concern for those in need, whether we are suffering from hunger, ill health, fear, poverty, sadness, death, madness, or grief. Above all, Christ our God is the Friend of man.” (OCPM 8/24/2017, 12/15/2017)

"Understood as a theological concept, rest is of far more than mere practical or functional significance, however. There is a sacred dimension to rest, a model offered to us by God, Himself, Who according to the Bible rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had done (Genesis 2:2). This supreme model suggests that rest is far more than a mere cessation of worldly activity; rather, rest is a spiritually imitative act of profound reverence for our Creator. To rest is to recognize with humility our privileged place in the grand scheme of God’s Creation, to participate in His divine creative act through our human acts of worship, praise, and love.” (Archbishop Demetrios of America)

“Rest (Gr. sabbatismos) literally means a Sabbath rest or Sabbath observance. There are three types of God's rest [described in the Bible] 1) the Sabbath rest, the day on which God rested from His works (Gn 2:2, 3); (2) the rest from Egyptian bondage, which the Israelites coming out of Egypt experienced in Canaan; (3) the rest in the kingdom, the ultimate Sabbath rest in heaven established by Messiah. Hebrews uses this OT quote (Ps 94:7–11) concerning Canaan to refer to the rest in the Kingdom of heaven. Significantly, we experience this rest now as we ascend to God in worship (Hebrews 4:4–11).” (Orthodox Study Bible, Hebrews 3:7-11)

“…the true meaning of the Lord's rest must be something beyond its literal sense. From earliest times, therefore, Christians have considered the Sabbath with respect to its symbolic value. Seeing it as prophetic, for example, St. Paul included the Sabbath within the "shadow of things to come" (Colossians 2:16), and in the Epistle to the Hebrews the Lord's day of rest became a type of the eternal rest of His people (4:1-11).” (Fr. Patrick Reardon)

“Christ and His Church offer salvation, eternal life, and the hope of the Resurrection. The church is not a type of psychiatric medication or a fabrication meant to calm our existential crises. It is the place where we experience the reality of the Kingdom of Heaven and God’s love for mankind through the ultimate expression of gratitude in the Eucharist. It is in this experience, in conjunction with the best of what modern medicine and therapy have to offer, that we find rest from the worry of this world. And, as we find peace, those around us will encounter Christ’s saving rest as well.” (Marcus Geromes M.Div, LMFT)

“God’s rest has to do with His eternal kingdom, which will only be revealed fully at the end of the age, although we may anticipate it now by faith.” (Dynamis 12/11/2018)

“The verb translated “rested” is related to the word for Sabbath, which means “rest.” (Foundation Study Bible, Genesis 2:2)

“…(Sabbath comes from the Hebrew verb “to cease”), it means we are to set apart that day to worship the Lord. God gave us this commandment and a principle designed for our own good. Setting aside one day a week to worship Him with others, and then spending that day with loved ones free from work is refreshing to our bodies, minds and souls.” (Sacramental Living)

“Man failed to keep this Sabbath-rest. But Jesus fulfilled it for man by resting in the tomb on Great and Holy Saturday, after He said on the cross, “It is finished” (Jn 19:30). For He destroyed sin and death, and rose again on the first day of the week. Through His saving work on man's behalf, He is man's Sabbath-rest, and He now invites all to find rest in Himself (Mt 11:28–30).” (Orthodox Study Bible, Genesis 2:1-3)

“This rhythm of work and rest is not only for believers; it is for everyone, as part of our created nature. Overwork or underwork violates that nature and leads to breakdown. To rest is actually a way to enjoy and honor the goodness of God’s creation and our own. To violate the rhythm of work and rest (in either direction) leads to chaos in our life and in the world around us. Sabbath is therefore a celebration of our design.” (Pastor Timothy Keller)

“Our Sabbath-rest in Christ begins when we trust Him to complete His good and perfect work in us...This rest is a foretaste of our eternal joy when creation will be renewed and restored, every mark of sin will be removed, and the world will be made perfect again." (Life Application Study Bible, Hebrews 4:4)

#FoundationStudyBible #SacramentalLiving #OrthodoxStudyBible #PastorTimothyKeller #LifeApplicationStudyBible #ArchbishopDemetriosofAmerica #FrPatrickReardon #MarcusGeromes #Dynamis #SacramentalLivingMinistries #FrStavrosNAkrotirianakis #OCPM

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