What is Sabbath and Why Should Everyone Do It? | Sabbath Series Part 1

June 30, 2021

What is Sabbath? Isn’t it some old-timey religious thing from the Bible? Should I be “doing” Sabbath if I’m a Jesus-follower?

Today, I’m going to tell you what Sabbath is and why everyone should be doing it!

A few years ago, I was supposed to be in the prime of my life, but what I was experiencing was stress and anxiety and exhaustion. I was only 30 years old and I was burning out because I had too much to do, too little time, and I had too much perfectionism to let myself quit anything. Oh, and I had just become a dad!

I had always been a hard worker, but I just couldn’t keep up with all the commitments I had. Maybe you’ve felt the same before.

The crazy thing was that I kept coming across the idea of Sabbath in the Bible. You see, Sabbath was always something that I had wanted to do in my life of following Jesus, but I had never managed to actually do anything about it. I was always too busy, or too hurried.

I had heard sermons about Sabbath, discussed it in small groups, read about it in the Bible, but I had never actually DONE it.

Sabbath was always something that I had wanted to do in my life of following Jesus, but I had never managed to actually do anything about it. I was always too busy, or too hurried.

But that all changed about three years ago, and it has been incredibly life giving to me, and connective for my family, so I wanted to share with you a short explanation of what it is so that you can start exploring how to incorporate Sabbath into your life.

Trust me, you’ll be so glad you did.

First, what is Sabbath?

In the Bible, we first hear about Sabbath when Moses tells the 10 commandments to the Israelites. They had just been rescued from slavery, and the 10 Commandments were God’s way of helping them establish a new identity as His people.

In Egypt, they were slaves. They served Pharaoh. They lived and died under that oppressive rule. But now, they had been rescued. They weren’t slaves any more. They were God’s people. His children. He wanted them to serve Him now, not Pharaoh anymore.

You see, slaves don’t get a break. But children do. Sabbath was given to God’s people, and by extension, us, to remind us that we are children of God! Sabbath is a gift to help us grow closer to our Heavenly dad!
If you want to learn more about Sabbath and why it’s so important for every follower of Jesus to learn how to experience it regularly, I’ve included some links to some great articles and even a book down at the end of this for you to check out more.

But I want to hear from you: Is the idea of a day of rest and connection familiar to your family? Or is it a foreign concept?

Let me know and stay tuned for the next part of our series: What NOT to do for Sabbath.

RESOURCES:

Ruth Haley Barton has an excellent 5-part blog series that goes into lots of depth. I have used her resource in my own personal Sabbath journey, as well as for research for this series.

John Mark Comer is a pastor and author in Portland, OR, and has a great book that looks at how work and rest are balanced in our call as humans. The second half of the book is full of beautiful and practical examples of how to practice Sabbath in our digital, chaotic world.

This is part 1 of a series. Follow the links below for the other parts:

  1. What is Sabbath and Why Should Everyone Do It?
  2. What NOT to Do for Sabbath
  3. What to INCLUDE for True Sabbath
  4. Stumble Forward Into Sabbath

Drew S Williams

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