Saturday, January 23, 2010

What does your Sabbath look like?

As I seek to live more and more as God would have me and my family live, the more amazed (stunned, fascinated, shocked?) I am at how far Christianity today has come down the wrong pathways. To be a Christian is to be Christ-like or followers of Christ, yes?

Jesus said that if we love him we will obey his commands, his teachings.

Many Christians are of the (convenient?) belief that the New Testament frees us from keeping a Sabbath. Interesting. Does that mean that we are also freed from the commandments that follow 'Observe the Sabbath and keep it holy'; that it's now okay to lie, murder steal? or the ones the precede it? It's okay to have other gods and make images of them to worship?

I think not.

I don't believe the New Testament frees us from this command. To me it's best summed up in this sentence I found in an article on God's Law in New Testament Ethical Times
"If the stature of Christ is our moral standard, then the Old Testament law must be kept in Christian ethics"

"But Jesus healed on the Sabbath" I hear too often. Sure - but He didn't live against the Sabbath. He remembered the Sabbath and kept it holy. His only variation being when LOVE dictated a change of habit.

Oh, and the things we use to justify that what we're doing is okay on our Sabbath because it's 'different' from what we do the rest of the week so therefore it's not our usual work.
Legalistic to the nth degree, just on the other side of the fence!

So as I nut through all this for our family I'm quite interested in what other people do to 'Observe the Sabbath and keep it holy'.

So far for us it means
-limiting household chores. Tidy up what is being done but don't spend time working. E.g. make beds, clean the kitchen table - necessary basics
-cooking a meal the day before for Sunday lunch
-not shopping
-spending time with family; more reading, playing games and watching appropriate movies together
-house cleaned the day before (during Saturday); Our day is much more enjoyable when in a clean and tidy environment!

These things enable us to have a more God focused day and a day of rest from our usual rush and bustle of life. I believe God created us with a physical, emotional and spiritual need for a day of rest.

Would I break Sabbath? Sure, when love requires it. When someone's hour of need is on the Sabbath, the needs must still be met, as best we're able.

Oh, and our Sabbath is from Saturday evening till Sunday evening - yes, I know others have Saturday as their sabbath and that's fine - they could probably even prove it legalistically as being the exact correct day... I though, am fully convinced in my own mind that the day does not matter. Having a Sabbath does.


  1. I love what you're doing. We are still sort of defining what it means for us.

    And yes, in my post, you were correct in your definition of a furnace. What would you call it in Australia?

  2. To clarify, as I just re-read my comment. We know what it means for us, but we're still defining what that looks like for us practically.

  3. Thanks Jamie :o)
    Would love to know what you come up with as you work through what it looks like for you.

    For me it's been hard to work (or not work lol) against habits that are decades old.
    I remember as a child you just didn't shop on a Sunday, everything was shut except the milk bar.... then it became that milk or lemonade from the milk bar was ok if mum needed it when we had guests for lunch... then as teenagers, Sunday shopping meant many shops were open and we might well go and do some shopping on a Sunday - clothes or whatever. I don't feel our Sunday was ever about keeping the Sabbath holy other than as a social and cultural habit - and doing just because it's done is not holy LOL (and I'm the daughter of Baptist ministers!!!!

    Yesterday was probably our closest yet to what I envisage as our ideal Sabbath - it was lovely and oh so refreshing

  4. Hi Mrs B!
    This is my first visit here and I came across from your comment on Eternally Grateful.
    though we fall far short we endeavour to keep the Sabbabth holy in similar ways eg. Saturday preparation, reading, worship, and only doing works of necessity and mercy.
    Thanks. I will be sure to call over again.

  5. Hi Ruby - Welcome :o)
    It's encouraging to hear of others endeavouring to keep the Sabbath - thank you for sharing

    I'm looking forward to next Sunday now that we're on our way. I also just had a thought that it's probably a good time to write letters to missionary's or thank you notes etc... when the mind can be more open to God's leading...

  6. This is my first visit here as well. it is nice to see some friends amongst your commenters. I'll be back!

    We also endevour to keep the Sabbath holy.

    We worship in our home church, some 3 hours from our home, and so our Sabbath requires significant travel. Apart from that, though, we worship morning and evening and fellowship with family and friends in the middle, often discussing what we learned that morning. Often the discussions get quite rowdy, but this is good!! We also read our special Sunday family books (mostly during the long journey home!)

    Sunday is a real day of rest for us. We love the Lord's Day!

  7. Hi Jeanne - welcome! Thanks for stopping by... I've stopped by your blog a couple of times after seeing the start of a post on Sarah's blog but could never see your posts :o( Just figured out tonight it's showing up differently on my screen, and I need to scroll down a whole lot further. Will be sure to stop by soon!

    Your Sunday's sound wonderful - love the discussions. Rowdy shows passion, a good thing!
    That's a seriously long drive for church ~ reading sounds like a good use of time for the return journey :o)

  8. Sorry about the formatting on my blog. Don't know why it does that with some computers and not others. It works fine on both our home computer and our laptop, but I am not clever enough to fix a problem I can't see!

    If you scroll down a bit you should find them!