What Did Jesus Say About Working On The Sabbath

Bible Gateway passage: Matthew 12 – New International Version

When Jesus was 12 years old, he traveled through the grainfields on the Sabbath. Seeing that his followers were starving, they proceeded to gather some heads of grain C)”>(C)and eat them immediately. 2When the Pharisees realized what had happened, they said to him, “Look! Your disciples are engaging in activities that are prohibited on the Sabbath.” D)”> (D) Three times he said, “Haven’t you read about what David did when he and his friends were hungry?” When he arrived to the house of God, he and his friends partake of the consecrated bread, which was not permitted for them to do but was only permitted for the priests to do.

Alternatively, haven’t you seen it written elsewhere in the Law that priests on Sabbath duty in the temple defile the Sabbath while remaining completely innocent?

H)”>(H) “7Had you realized what these words meant, ‘I desire mercy rather than sacrifice,’I)”>(I)you would not have sentenced the innocent to death.

9After leaving that location, he entered their synagogue, where he was greeted by a guy with a withered hand.

” M)”>(M) 12Can you imagine how much more important a human is than a sheep?

14 The Pharisees, on the other hand, walked off and began plotting how they would murder Jesus.

God’s Chosen Servant

15When Jesus saw what was going on, he left the area. A great throng followed him, and he was able to heal everyone who was sick. P) The letter P is an abbreviation for the letter P “>(P)16He cautioned them not to tell anybody else who they were with. Q)”>(Q) 17This was done in order to fulfill R) “This is (R)what was declared by way of the prophet Isaiah: 18 T)”>(T)I will put my Spirit on him and he will announce justice to all the nations. “Here is my servant whom I have chosen, the one whom I love, the one in whom I delight; S)”>(S)I will put my Spirit on him and he will declare justice to all the nations.

20He will not shatter a damaged reed, and he will not extinguish a blazing candle, until he has brought justice to a successful conclusion.


Jesus and Beelzebul V)”>(V)

22Then they brought him a demon-possessed man who was blind and deaf, and Jesus cured him, enabling him to speak and see for the very first time. W)”>(W) Everyone was taken aback and wondered aloud if it was the Son of David who had shown. > ” X ( )”> (X) Y)”>(Y)the prince of devils is the only one who can drive demons out of this person, according to the Pharisees, who were outraged when they heard what Jesus had stated. ” Z)”> ” Z)”> (Z) AA)”>(AA)25Jesus understood what they were thinking, and he told them, “Every kingdom divided against itself will be wrecked, and every city or household divided against itself will be destroyed.

  1. So, how can his kingdom continue to exist?
  2. 30And if I drive out demons by Beelzebul, AC)”>(AC)by whom do your people AD)”>(AD)drive them out?
  3. 28However, if I am driving out demons through the power of the Holy Spirit, then the kingdom of God AE)”>(AE)has descended upon you.
  4. After that, he can go through his house and loot it.
  5. ” AF)”>(AF) 31As a result, I warn you that every sort of sin and slander can be forgiven, but blasphemy against the Holy Spirit will not be.

AI)”>(AI) 33 “Create an aesthetically pleasing tree, and its fruit will be pleasing, or create an aesthetically undesirable tree, and its fruit will be undesirable, for a tree is identified by its fruit.” AJ)”>(AJ) 34 How can you, you vile brood of vipers, AK)”>(AK)say anything nice, when you are bad?

35A good man draws good things from the good that he has stored up within him, and a wicked man draws bad things from the evil that he has stored up within him.

But I assure you that on the day of judgment, everyone will be called to account for every idle word they have said throughout their lifetime. Because you will be acquitted or convicted by your words, depending on how you choose to communicate. ” a.m. ()”> (AM)

The Sign of Jonah AN)”>(AN)AO)”>(AO)

When he returned, a group of Pharisees and teachers of the law approached him and said, “Teacher, we’d like to see a sign AP) “>(AP)from you, please. “AQ)” is an abbreviation for “Aq” “His response was, “A corrupt and adulterous generation has asked for a sign!” However, no one else will be able to offer it to you save for the prophet Jonah. AR)”>(AR) 40Following in the footsteps of Jonah, who spent three days and three nights in the belly of a great fish, the Son of Man AT)”>(AT)will spend three days and three nights in the depths of the earth AS)”>(AS).

42.1 The Queen of the South will stand up with this generation at the judgment and condemn it; for she came AX) “>(AX)people have come from all over the world to hear Solomon’s wisdom, and now something much better than Solomon has arrived.

45Then it travels and brings with it seven other spirits who are much more evil than itself, and they take up residence in the house.

AY) AY) AY) AY) AY) AY) “In the case of this evil age, that is exactly how it will be.

Jesus’ Mother and Brothers AZ)”>(AZ)

46During the time that Jesus was still speaking to the multitude, his mother BA)”>(BA) and brothers BB)”>(BB) stood outside, eager to speak with him. ‘Your mother and brothers are standing outside, eager to talk with you,’ someone informed him. ‘Who are my mother and brothers,’ he inquired. 48He said, “Who are my mother and brothers?” 49 “Here are my mother and my brothers,” he added, gesticulating toward his disciples. 50 In fact, everybody who complies with the will of my heavenly Father (BC)”>(BC)is my brother, sister, and mother.”

Sabbath and Work (Luke 6:1-11; 13:10-17)

Working on the Sabbath is an integral component of the biblical notion of labor, and Jesus speaks about it in the Gospel of Luke, which is the most popular version of the Bible. Labor and relaxation are not diametrically opposed forces, but rather components of a rhythm that allows both productive work and genuine leisure. People’s demands for provision and health should be met by this rhythm in an ideal society, but in a fallen world, there are occasions when this is not the case.

Lord of the Sabbath (Luke 6:1-11)

It is the Sabbath, and Jesus and his followers are hungry, as recorded in Luke 6:1-5. They forage for grains in fields, rubbing the heads of grain between their palms, and then eating the kernels. Some Pharisees object, claiming that this involves threshing and, as a result, constitutes labor on the Sabbath. Because they were starving, Jesus explains that David and his friends had also violated the holy regulations by going into the temple of God and consuming the consecrated bread that was only authorized to be consumed by priests.

Even though it involves working on the Sabbath, it is allowed to labor to provide for your own needs if you are in desperate need.

“The Lordship of the Sabbath belongs to the Son of Man” (Luke 6:5). That is, rather than generating increasingly detailed regulations and exceptions, observing the Sabbath is based on knowing God’s heart, as opposed to developing increasingly detailed laws and exceptions.

Set Free on the Sabbath (Luke 13:10-17)

More information may be found here on a recent research conducted at the Boston Consulting Group by two professors from Harvard Business School on the rhythms of rest and labor. It demonstrated that when the idea that everyone must be present at all times was collectively challenged, not only were people able to take time off, but their work was actually enhanced as a result. This article may be shown with an advertisement and may necessitate registration with Harvard Business Review.) The devotional “Won’t Keeping the Sabbath Make Me Less Productive?” by Mark Roberts, published by Life for Leaders, addresses this subject as well.

  1. Nonetheless, it would be difficult to construct a theology of the Sabbath only on the basis of the events recorded in Luke.
  2. Despite the fact that maintaining the Sabbath is one of the Ten Commandments, human necessities take precedence over honoring the Sabbath.
  3. The healing of the crippled lady on the Sabbath is a particularly poignant illustration of this principle in action.
  4. It is better to come on certain days and get treated rather than on the Sabbath (Luke 13:14).
  5. Shouldn’t this lady, a daughter of Abraham who Satan has held captive for eighteen long years, be set free from her bonds on the Sabbath day, if people water their animals on the Sabbath, as was formerly permitted?

Jesus and the Sabbath – What is the Sabbath

Jesus and the religious elites of his day were at odds over a variety of problems, including religious traditions, mingling with sinners, spiritual authority, and other matters. Jesus’ acts were meticulously scrutinized by these authorities on one particular subject, that of the Sabbath day. In recognition of the fact that the Sabbath was a sacred day set apart (Exodus 20:8 – 11), the Ten Commandments forbade working on it. In the same way that the Israelites were told to give a portion of their profits to God, they were also instructed to give him a portion of their time.

What activities constitute “work?”

In the years after the rebuilding of the temple following the exile (515 BC – AD 70), scribes and rabbis examined the words of Scripture, delving into every detail to find meaning. Within the confines of the Law, what kind of work could be permitted on the Sabbath? For example, according to the Law, no work was allowed to be done on the Sabbath, which meant that burdens were not allowed to be carried on that particular day. As a result, researchers disagreed over what constituted a “burden.” It appears that there were legitimate concerns about people accidentally breaking the Law, which led to the scribes’ meticulous interpretation of the text of the Law.

  1. Following their own interpretations became a source of pride, rather than an expression of love for God, as a result of their actions.
  2. Healings performed by Jesus on the Sabbath infuriated the religious leaders, who considered healing to be “work” and hence outlawed it on the Sabbath (Deuteronomy 5:15).
  3. “Look, why are they doing what is prohibited on the Sabbath?” the Pharisees demanded.
  4. It was during the reign of Abiathar the high priest that he entered the house of God and ate the consecrated bread, which was previously exclusively permitted for the consumption of priests.
  5. As a result, even on the Sabbath, the Son of Man is Lord.” Mark 2:24-28 (KJV) According to Mark 12:30 – 31, God had given the Law to the Israelites in order to inspire them to love him and to love others.

He had never said that doing good on the Sabbath was forbidden. However, Jesus stressed that God had provided the Sabbath as a gift to the people he had created, as opposed to the Pharisees who acted as if God had created mankind in order for him to have someone to observe the Sabbath (Mark 2:27).

Key Teaching

The Ten Commandments, according to the Pharisees, imposed severe limitations that were punishable by death. According to Jesus, the Law defined significant liberties that lead to a fulfilling life (Matthew 5:17). The New International Version of the Jesus Bible (NIV) was used to write this article. The Jesus Bible has a total of NIVSixty-six books. There is just one narrative. It’s all about a single name. Throughout Scripture, you will come face to face with the living Jesus. It contains special essays from Louie Giglio, Max Lucado, John Piper, and Randy Alcorn, all of whom will assist you in seeing Jesus in every book of the Bible.

Back to the NIV Main Blog Page


Did Jesus Break the Sabbath?

Practically anyone who has been exposed to Christianity knows that Jesus Christ grew up in an environment steeped in Old Testament scriptures; He knew them, quoted them and lived by them.Or did He? Some believe that Jesus kept the law so that others after Him would no longer need to. Others say that He revealed new meaning through old laws. Many, however, believe that Jesus made a “break” with the old Law, and in breaking the law established a new pattern of living for His followers.Nowadays, even many who call themselves friends of Jesus say that He broke the law. Originally, however—during His lifetime on earth—it was His enemies who made that accusation.Because Jesus performed miracles of healing on the Sabbath, some Pharisees accused Him of breaking the Sabbath (Matthew 12:10; Mark 3:2, John 9:14-16). John records that Jesus performed a healing during one of the festivals in Jerusalem. John’s gospel records what happened next, when Jesus confronted His accusers: “Jesus answered them, ‘My Father has been working until now, and I have been working.’ Therefore the Jews sought all the more to kill Him, because He not only broke the Sabbath, but also said that God was His Father, making Himself equal with God” (John 5:17-18). From this, many assume that the Pharisees’ accusation— that Jesus broke the Sabbath—was correct, and that Christians as a result are free to do so.Scripture also records that Jesus’ disciples were walk�ing through a field on the Sabbath when they plucked and ate heads of grain. Seeing this, some Pharisees asked them: “Why are you doing what is not lawful to do on the Sabbath?” (Luke 6:2). Many accept that the Pharisees’ accusation is correct, and that by their actions Jesus and His disciples did not keep the Sabbath.To understand what is at issue in these accounts, it is helpful to understand something of the rabbinical tradition that lay behind the Sabbath-breaking charges leveled against Jesus and His disciples. The Pharisaic tradition, by Jesus’ day, had developed into an array of petty rules having to do with the minutiae of the law. It focused on physical works that had little to do with the spirit and intent of the law—and which, in fact, often violated the law (Matthew 15:1-9; Mark 7:1-13; John 7:19; Galatians 6:13).The scribes among the Pharisees created and transmitted the Pharisaic rabbinical traditions. The body of traditional law that they formulated, called the Halakah (preserved in the Mishnah), is extra-biblical. Although authoritative for Jews who follow Pharisaic tradition, much of the Halakah is not directly supported by Scripture, but is intended as a “hedge” about the law, to prevent any possibility of its being broken.Ironically, in an attempt to ensure their law-keeping by putting a “hedge” about the law, the Pharisees were breaking the law, for God had said: “You shall not add to the word which I command you, nor take anything from it, that you may keep the command�ments of the Lord your God which I command you” (Deuteronomy 4:2; also 12:32). By adding the weight of their tradition to the law of God, they bound “heavy burdens, hard to bear, and lay them on men’s shoul�ders” (Matthew 23:4).The Pharisees placed the authority of their traditions above that of Scripture itself, thus going against the word of God. Scripture scholar Joachim Jeremias affirms that for the Pharisees, the oral tradition was “above the Torah,” and that the esoteric writings containing scribal teachings were regarded as inspired and surpassing the canonical books “in value and sanctity” (Jerusalem in the Time of Jesus, pp. 236, 238-239). Alfred Edersheim also points out that traditional law was of “even greater obligation than Scripture itself” (The Life and Times of Jesus the Messiah, Book I, 1.98).What was the nature of these traditional ordinances? “The Halakah indicated with the most minute and painful punctiliousnessevery legal ordinance as to outward observance. But beyond this it left the inner man, the spring of actions, untouched.” Echoing what Jesus said (Mark 7:5-13), Edersheim continues: “Israel had made void the Law by its traditions. Under a load of outward ordinances and observances its spirit had been crushed” (Book I, 1.106, 1.108).The sometimes absurd contradictions within Pharisaic law are especially apparent in the rules of Sabbath observance. Edersheim writes: “On no other subject is Rabbinic teaching more painfully minute and more manifestly incongruous to its professed object.” Edersheim charges the scribes with “terribly exaggerated views on the Sabbath” and “endless burdensome rules with which they encumbered everything connected with its sanctity” (ibid., Book II, 2.52, 2.53). “In not less than twenty-four chapters, matters are seriously discussedas of vital religious importance, which one would scarcely imagine a sane intellect would seriously entertain.” Yet “in all these wearisome details there is not a single trace of anything spiritual—not a word even to suggest higher thoughts on God’s holy day and its observance” (ibid., 2.778-779).For example, the law included detailed regulations regarding what constituted a “burden” that could not be carried on the Sabbath; for example, pieces of paper, horses hairs, wax, a piece of broken earthenware or animal food. Generally a burden was anything as heavy as a dried fig, or a quantity sufficient to be of any practical use (e.g. a scrap of paper large enough to be converted into a note or a wrapper). It prescribed what might or might not be saved if one’s house caught on fire. Only those clothes that were absolutely necessary could be saved. But one could put on a dress, save it, then go back and put on another. One could not ask a Gentile to extinguish the flames. But if he did so voluntarily, he should not be hindered. One could eat food on the Sabbath lawfully only if it had been specifically prepared for the Sabbath on a weekday. If a laying hen laid an egg on the Sabbath, it could not be eaten. But if the hen had been kept for fattening and not laying, the egg could be eaten, since it would be considered a part of the hen that had fallen off! These regulations considered studying the Mishna on the Sabbath more important than studying the Bible. The Hagiographa (the Old Testament “Writings”) were not to be read on the Sabbath except in the evening. And there are many other similar examples.Of special interest to us are the laws regarding harvesting and healing on the Sabbath. Even the slightest activity involving picking grain—removing the husks, rubbing the heads, cleaning or bruising the ears or throwing them up in the hand—was forbidden. Yet if a man wanted to move a sheaf on his field, he had only to lay a spoon on it; then, in order to remove the spoon, he might also remove the sheaf on which it lay!It should be noted that, unlike the Pharisees (whose numbers were relatively few), most Jews of Jesus’ day paid little attention to these petty rules.When the Pharisees complained about Jesus’ disciples plucking and eating heads of grain on the Sabbath, Jesus (as He often did) was able to point out the contradictions in Pharisaic law. Jesus noted how David and his followers, famished and fleeing for their lives, ate the shewbread when no other food was available, though it was normally only for the priests to eat (Mat�thew 12:3-4; Mark 2:25-26; Luke 6:3-4; 1 Samuel 21:1-6). Even the Pharisaic law agreed with the original written law on this point, vindicating what David chose to do when his life was in danger (Edersheim, Book II, 2.58). Jesus simply said: “Yet I say to you that in this place there is One greater than the temple. But if you had known what this means, ‘I desire mercy and not sacrifice,’ you would not have condemned the guiltless. For the Son of Man is Lord even of the Sabbath” (Matthew 12:6-8).Of course, the Sabbath commandment is in a separate category from the sacrificial ordinances. Yet since Jewish law permitted the feeding and watering of animals on the Sabbath to relieve unnecessary suffering, this principle would logically and naturally extend to human beings—in this case, Jesus’ disciples—who were partaking of the only food readily available at that time.This controversy would never have been possible were it not for the Pharisees’ exaggerated views about actions forbidden or allowed on the Sabbath. The priests in the Temple worked on the Sabbath, yet were guiltless (Matthew 12:5). The scribes knew this, but apparently did not clearly understand why it was so. Somehow, they missed the point that God instituted the Sabbath not only to give human beings rest from physical labors, but also to give them a time to devote to God by doing His works and serving Him. The disciples’ actions were “clearly not a breach of the Biblical, but of the Rabbinic Law” (Edersheim, Book II, 2.56). Jesus said that the Pharisees, not understanding the law, had “condemned the guiltless” (Matthew 12:7). Clearly, the disciples were falsely accused, and were not guilty of breaking the Sabbath as charged.Since healing might entail work, Pharisaic law permitted it on the Sabbath only if necessary to save life or prevent death. Thus a plaster might be applied to a wound if the object was to prevent it from getting worse, but not to heal it. Yet, contrarily, a splinter might be removed from the eye, or a thorn from the body, though no immediate danger to life was perceived. Furthermore, an animal might be removed from a pit, or taken to water, on the Sabbath.When the Pharisees accused Jesus of violating the law by healing on the Sabbath, He again was able to reveal their hypocrisy by using their own contradictory rules. First, we will examine Jesus’ acknowledgement that He had been working. The Sabbath law is, in part: “Six days shall you 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” (Exodus 20:9-10). Notice that the work forbidden by the Sabbath law is “your work.” The law does not forbid works of service towards God. Indeed, the very reason we are commanded to cease from our own works on the Sabbath is so we may devote the time to the work of honoring and serving God; that we may “turn your foot from the Sabbath, from doing your pleasure on My holy day, and call the Sabbath a delight, the holy day of the Lord honorable, and shall honor Him, not doing your own ways, nor finding your own pleasure, nor speaking your own words” (Isaiah 58:13). Here it is clear that it is our own works—the course of our everyday business—that we are to avoid on the Sabbath. On the other hand, we are to honor God on the Sabbath. Giving honor to God often entails work—”good works.”A careful reading of Scripture reveals that we are to cease and rest from common or profane work on the Sabbath, so that the time may be devoted to God’s holy purpose. But implicit in the Sabbath command is that we do the work necessary to fulfill the spiritual aim and meaning of the Sabbath. On the first Sabbath, God rested from His work of physical creation, but He did the work of creating the Sabbath, blessing and sanctifying it (Genesis 2:2-3; Mark 2:27). The weekly Sabbaths and the annual Sabbaths were proclaimed to be “holy convocations”—commanded assemblies for the purpose of gathering to hear God’s word taught, and for congregational worship (Leviticus 23:2, 4). This includes the “work” required to travel to the place of assembly, and to listen, learn and participate in the worship service. Those commissioned to teach did the work of reading and explaining God’s word. On such occasions, people customarily did the work of eating and drinking, sharing and rejoicing in the holy day and in the truth of God’s word (Nehemiah 8:1-12). Other work implicit in the command was done, too: even on the most solemn day of the year— the Day of Atonement—the priests did the work of slaying animals and offering sacrifices before God, according to the requirements of the law (Leviticus 16).The work of honoring and worshiping God is not forbidden on the Sabbath. Indeed, it is the object of the Sabbath. That is why the priests could work on the Sabbath and not be guilty. Their work was a necessary part of the congregational Sabbath duty of honoring and serving God. It was, in that sense, not their work but God’s work that was being done. On a Sabbath day early in His ministry, Jesus announced in summary form the work He had been sent to perform. His work was preaching the gospel, healing [both physically and spiritually] and liberating from oppression (Luke 4:18-19). The works Jesus did were not His works, but God’s works, which He had been sent to perform (John 4:34; 9:4; 17:4). Healing was an integral part of Christ’s ministry. In perfect harmony with what the Sabbath rest pictures—and with the gospel message—Jesus’ healings typified the physical and spiritual healings that Christ will perform during the Millennium, when the Kingdom of God is established on the earth (see Isaiah 35:5-6, 57:16-20; Jeremiah 30:10, 17; Ezekiel 47:8-10).When Jesus healed on the Sabbath, He was not breaking the Sabbath, but fulfilling it, because one is not at rest when afflicted, oppressed and bound by disease or infirmity. As many scriptures show, God delights in redeeming and restoring the afflicted, and giving them the rest exemplified by His Sabbath. God “hears the cry of the afflicted. When he gives quietness , who then can make trouble?” (Job 34:28-29). Bound by their false traditions, the Pharisees did try to make trouble for the Messiah, condemning Him for giving those whom He healed rest from their afflictions.Instead, they should have offered praise. Speaking of ones afflicted and at death’s door, the psalmist wrote: “Then they cried out to the Lord in their trouble, and He saved them out of their distresses. He sent His word and healed them, and delivered them from their destructions. Oh, that men would give thanks to the Lord for His goodness, and for His wonderful works to the children of men! Let them sacrifice the sacrifices of thanksgiving, and declare His works with rejoicing” (Psalm 107:19-22).Jesus answered those who accused him of breaking the Sabbath: “If a man receives circumcision on the Sabbath, so that the law of Moses should not be broken, are you angry with Me because I made a man completely well on the Sabbath? Do not judge according to appearance, but judge righteous judgment” (John 7:23-24).As we have seen, when John wrote that Jesus “broke the Sabbath” (John 5:18), he was describing Jesus’ actions from the Pharisees’ perspective (compare 9:14-1 6). Those who say Jesus did actually break the Sabbath are agreeing with Christ’s enemies—His accusers—that Jesus’ miraculous works of healing were a breach of the Sabbath law. They are agreeing with Jesus’ accusers that He was a Sabbath-breaker. To be consistent, they must also agree with the Pharisees when they said of Christ: “We know that this man is a sinner” (v. 24). The blind man who had been healed knew better than that, saying that “we know that God does not hear sinners; but if anyone is a worshiper of God and does His will, He hears him” (v. 31).When Jesus healed on the Sabbath, He was not violating the law of God. By His actions, He demonstrated the true application of God’s laws—rather than Pharisaic traditions—that “it is lawful to do good on the Sabbath” (Matthew 12:12). The “law” that Jesus violated was a man made rule that was itself against the principles of God’s law.Remember: Had Jesus Christ actually broken the Sabbath, He would have been sinning. But the Scripture says that He “committed no sin” (1 Peter 2:22). Had He sinned, He could not be our Savior. But He, being undefiled and separate from sinners, offered Himself without spot and without blemish to God for our redemption (Hebrews 7:26; 9:14; 1 Peter 1:18-19). No, Jesus did not break the Sabbath. He spent the Sabbath preaching, teaching, healing, honoring God and doing the good work of His ministry—the work of God.The record of Scripture is that Jesus kept the Sabbath faithfully, as God intended it to be kept. In do�ing so, He set us an example. “He who says he abides in Him ought himself also to walk just as He walked” (1 John 2:6).�2005 Living Church of God. Reprinted with permission from the May-June 2005 edition ofTomorrow’s Worldmagazine. Tomorrow’s Worldis available at Tomorrow’s World, P.O. Box 3810, Charlotte, NC 28227-8010 orwww.tomorrowsworld.org.TSSSeptember / October 2005 The Sabbath Sentinel
See also:  How Jesus Actually Looked


Sorted in alphabetical order by book title In the first six days, labor shall be completed; however, on the seventh day, you are to observe an observance of the LORD’s Sabbath of rest, and anybody who works on that day must be put to death. Exodus 35:2- Matthew 12:11-12-And he said to them, “What man will there be among you who will have one sheep, and if that sheep falls into a pit on the sabbath day, will he not lay hold on it and lift it out?” He was referring to a man who would have one sheep and would not lift it out of the pit on the sabbath day.

Jesus stated to them in Mark 2:27-28, “The sabbath was made for man, and not man for the sabbath”: “The sabbath was made for man, and not man for the sabbath.” (Continue reading.) Matthew 12:9-14-And as soon as he had left them, he went into their synagogue, where he preached: (Continue reading.) Colossians 2:16-Therefore, let no one judge you in regard to eating or drink, or in regard to a holyday, or in regard to the new moon, or in regard to the sabbath days: In accordance with Exodus 35:3, you shall not light a fire in any of your dwellings on the seventh day.

Therefore, the Jews desired to murder him all the more since he had not only broken the sabbath, but also claimed that God was his Father, thereby declaring himself to be on an equal footing with God.

See also:  What Did Jesus Say On The Cross Before He Died

Mark 2:23 (NIV) And it came to pass that he was walking through the corn fields on the sabbath day, and his followers began plucking the ears of corn as they went.

Nehemiah 13:15-22-I saw some treading wine presses on the sabbath, and bringing in sheaves and (Continue reading.) Topics and verses are produced automatically based on user queries.

Some scriptural references and categories are courtesy of Open Bible.info, which is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 license. More information on Working On The Sabbath may be found in the King James Version (KJV).

Popular Topics for Bible Verses

QuestionAnswer In the gospels, we read of multiple instances in which Jesus performed a healing on the Sabbath day. As a result of the healing, the religious authorities were confronted in a number of cases (Mark 3:1–6, Luke 6:6–8, Luke 13:10–17, Luke 14:1–6, John 5:1–18). The miracle of healing is described in Luke 4:38–41, following Jesus’ teaching in the synagogue on the Sabbath; however, there is no mention of a confrontation since the miracle was accomplished in a private house. Jesus was well aware of the Pharisees’ restrictions about the Sabbath, so why did He chose that particular day to cure people?

  1. He was unquestionably operating in contravention of the Pharisaical understanding of the law as well as their specific laws.
  2. The primary reason that Jesus healed on the Sabbath was that people were in desperate need of His assistance.
  3. Jesus performed miracles on the Sabbath in order to expose the hypocrisy of the Pharisees’ religious practices.
  4. In an agrarian civilization, caring for animals was a key part of a typical day’s activities.
  5. It should go without saying that if your religious beliefs allow for assisting animals on the Sabbath, they should also allow for helping people.
  6. His healing provided them with the solution.
  7. It is an unholy distortion of the law to use the Sabbath rule to commit evil or to kill someone.
  8. The Torah is the legitimate law.
  9. The traditions of religious leaders, which they mixed with biblical law, grew to be considered as essential as God’s real Word in their eyes.

The following activities were prohibited by the Pharisees on the Sabbath: writing, erasing, and tearing; conducting business transactions; shopping; cooking, baking, or starting a fire; gardening; doing laundry; carrying anything longer than six feet in a public place; moving anything with your hand, even indirectly (with a broom): a shattered bowl, flowers in a vase, candles on a table, uncooked food, a rock, a button that has come loose (you could move things with your elbow or your breath, but not with your hand).

  1. And this is only a tiny list of the possibilities.
  2. “Remember the Sabbath day by observing its observance.” You must labor and complete all of your job for six days, but the seventh day is set aside as a sabbath to the Lord your God.
  3. Because the Lord created the heavens and the earth, the sea, and everything that exists within them in six days, but he rested on the seventh day.
  4. “Work” was described as Jesus’ healing because of traditions that were created by humans.
  5. Another reason Jesus healed on the Sabbath was to serve as a reminder to the people as to why God ordained the day of rest on the seventh day.
  6. The Sabbath allowed people to rest (both mentally and physically) after a week of hard labor and to turn their attention away from their everyday routines and toward God.
  7. In the face of Jesus’ clear ability to heal and restore, the religious authorities chose to ignore their opportunity to consider the possibility that they were mistaken.

Their obstinacy serves as a valuable reminder to us about the need of examining our views to verify that they are biblical and in accordance with the Word of God. Questions about Mark (return to top of page) What was Jesus doing healing on the Sabbath?

Subscribe to the

Get our Question of the Week emailed to your inbox every weekday morning! Got Questions Ministries is a trademark of Got Questions Ministries, Inc., registered in the state of California in the year 2002. All intellectual property rights are retained. Policy Regarding Personal Information The information on this page was last updated on January 4, 2022.

Sabbath: Is it Still Relevant to Christians Today?

Missy Takano contributed to this article. 2 years have passed since

What is the Sabbath?

Scripture begins with a regular, rhythmic period of rest, and it continues throughout the book. God created a pattern of resting on the seventh day long before humanity walked away from him and before God formed his partnership with the nation of Israel (Genesis 2:2-3). The question is, what does honoring the Sabbath imply today for God’s people? Is it expected of Christians to respect the Sabbath day? And, if so, in what way? After all, why would we keep the mandate to “remember the Sabbath” if we don’t have to follow other of the more bizarre commandments in the Bible (such as those about rotting fabric or which insects to eat)?

The Origins of Sabbath

Take a short look at the notion of Sabbathrest as it appears in the Hebrew Scriptures before we get to the solution to that issue (theOld Testament). In the Bible, there are two major Hebrew terms for rest that are employed. shabbat, which is largely translated into the English word sabbath, is the earliest of these terms. Rest is simply defined as “a period of time during which one does not work.” Consider the situation of working an hourly job where you clock out at the conclusion of a day’s work.

  • Nuakh is another important Hebrew term for rest that is found in the Hebrew Scriptures.
  • This form of relaxation may be achieved by doing simple things like sitting in front of a fire with a loved one or unpacking a bag to go visit granny for the holidays.
  • God establishes shabbat and nuakh at around the same time.
  • Now that we’ve spent six days bringing order to chaos, it’s time to take a sabbatical from this task.
  • It appears that the concepts of shabbat and nuakh are designed to be used in conjunction with one another.
  • What will be the outcome of the rest of the story?

The Interplay of Sabbath and Rest in the Hebrew Scriptures

There is a limit to how long this exquisite rhythm of relaxation can persist. Throughout the history of God’s chosen people, the nation of Israel, there have been repeated failures to observe Shabbat properly (Ezekiel 20:12-13, Jeremiah 17:27). People of God worship a plethora of false gods, reject God’s good intentions for them, and rebel in almost every way that is humanly conceivable. God’s presence with them is maintained, or nuakhs, through the tabernacle and, subsequently, the temple, notwithstanding (Exodus 40:34, 2 Chronicles 5:14).

This was the original objective of the Sabbath, which was observed on the first day of creation.

It was done in order for God and his people to be at ease in their connection. It’s a stunning image that left us yearning for more more. Will the observance of the Sabbath ever be reinstated? Let’s take a look and see what we can find out.

Does Jesus Keep the Sabbath?

In the person of Jesus, we find the clearest depiction yet of God’s presence taking up physical space on earth and residing among God’s people, as depicted in the New Testament. From what we can gather from the Gospel, Jesus had a lot to say about the Sabbath and about the genuine rest that God intended for his followers. Let’s look at an example from the Gospel of Matthew to see what I mean. Matthew prepares his readers for a series of interconnected events in which Jesus is confronted by religious leaders and instructors from Israel’s community.

(Matthew 12:9-14).

With an argument that redefines the Sabbath, confirms his status as the expected Messiah, and establishes his divinity, Jesus answers to the accusation (Matthew 12:3-8).

However, to Jesus, the observation of the Sabbath led to something higher.

Jesus Points Beyond a Sabbath Day

“Come to me, all you who are tired and burdened, and I will give you rest,” Jesus says in response to the accounts of Sabbath disagreements. I invite you to take up my yoke and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and I promise you that you will find rest for your souls.” (Matthew 11:28-30; Mark 10:28-30) How come there’s so much language about rest immediately before a verse that deals with the Sabbath? This isn’t a clerical error. What exactly is Matthew attempting to say with this?

  1. The people were in desperate need of rest, both in terms of pausing from hard work (shabbat) and in terms of being present with God (nuakh).
  2. Jesus reminded the people of God’s true intention for the Sabbath: oneness with God, creation, and one another, which was originally discovered in Eden on the first page of the Bible and was first observed by Adam and Eve.
  3. It was intended to point to him, the one who had been promised through all of Israel’s prophets, the one who would restore the natural cycle of creation, and it did just that.
  4. It is necessary that we take a break from the broken rhythms of bustle and suffering to set aside a time of surrender to his authority and appreciation of his presence, as well as to extend these things to the people and things around us.

When we observe the Sabbath properly, we are transformed into mini-retreats for the presence of God.

Keeping the Sabbath: What Does it Mean to Rest Today?

So, how does this manifest itself in the real world? It may be as simple as going to a weekend church service, or as complicated as shutting off work emails or working at a soup kitchen. Does it make a difference which day you observe the Sabbath? Those activities might absolutely be included in your Sabbath, and it could take place on the same day each week as before! However, the text appears to place greater emphasis on the purpose of the Sabbath than it does on the guidelines for how to observe it.

  • Each of these items was handed to a specific set of individuals at an exact moment for a specified reason.
  • Not a mandate that we must follow, but rather a promise that we are asked to participate in.
  • It is a place where we engage in God’s authority and reign in our hearts and on the planet on a regular and purposeful basis.
  • The purposeful pause that we practice allows us to make space for him to establish a home in each of our own lives.
  • Even better, we are actively participating in this new creation story, laying the groundwork for God to establish his home place, his resting place, right here on earth.
See also:  What Were The Names Of Jesus Sisters

What Does God’s Word Say About the Christian Keeping the Sabbath?

Our founder, Theodore H. Epp, wrote an article in which he investigated this very charged topic in the Church today: Which is more important, the Sabbath or the Lord’s Day? Some religious organizations believe that keeping the Sabbath is vital in order to be saved, while others disagree. They are adamant that we are still subject to the law. Nonetheless, for reasons that have not been revealed, they assert the authority to relax some of the constraints imposed by the Bible on the practice of honoring the Sabbath as a day of rest.

  • All of this adds to the uncertainty around this irritating situation, for which the Bible has the only appropriate remedy.
  • The phrases “evening” and “dawn,” on the other hand, are conspicuously absent from this description of the Sabbath day.
  • Then God began His laborious process of making new beings in the person of Jesus Christ.
  • In fact, there is no implicit requirement on the side of man to observe the Sabbath in this text.
  • The Sabbath is not mentioned again for another 2500 years after its initial reference; not a single word is said about it throughout that time period.
  • The earliest reference of the Sabbath since the time when God rested from His labors on the seventh day is found in Exodus 16:23: “God rested from His labors on the seventh day.” “‘This is what the LORD has said: ‘Tomorrow is a Sabbath rest, a holy Sabbath to the LORD,’ he explained to them.
  • You made Your holy Sabbath known to them, and by the hand of Moses Your servant, You gave them commandments, regulations, and laws that they should follow ” (9:13-14).
  • For six days, you must labor and complete all of your tasks, but on the seventh day, you must rest as the LORD your God commands.
  • Neither are your sons, nor are your daughters.
  • Thus, the LORD blessed and sanctified the Sabbath day and declared it holy.” Curiosity has piqued my interest.
  • When the reason for which the Sabbath was instituted is grasped, the solution becomes obvious.

It is necessary to take the following factors into consideration: “Speak to the children of Israel as well, telling them, “Certainly, My Sabbaths you shall observe, for it is a sign between Me and you throughout your generations, that you may know that I am the LORD who sanctifies you.” As a result, you are required to observe the Sabbath since it is sacred to you.

  1. After six days of work, the seventh day is designated as the Sabbath of rest, which is sacred to the LORD.
  2. Consequently, the descendants of Israel are commanded to maintain the Sabbath, to observe the Sabbath throughout their generations as part of a permanent covenant.
  3. Any Israelite who did not observe the Sabbath was to be cut off from the rest of his people.
  4. According to God’s foreknowledge, the Israelites were to be dispersed shortly after the crucifixion of Christ, and the Book of Galatians teaches that the Law was given by Moses until the death of Jesus Christ: “So, what is the purpose of the law in this case?
  5. Despite the fact that Israel has returned to the country, she has not recognized her God, and as a result, the sign of the Sabbath has not yet been enforced.
  6. He most certainly did.
  7. First and foremost, John 1:11 states that “He came to His own,” which refers to the Jews.

He was created in accordance with the Law and was a member of the nation of Israel.

“But when the fullness of time had come, God sent out His Son, born of a woman, born under the law,” says Galatians 4:4, indicating that He came to His own.

He did not come to abolish the Law, but rather to bring it into full compliance: “Do not believe that I have come to destroy the Law or the Prophets.

I did not come to destroy, but rather to bring about fulfillment.


This serves as proof of His sinlessness.

It was observed by all Jews since, up to Christ’s crucifixion, both the disciples and Christ were still subject to the Law of Moses.

However, it is crucial to note that Christ is never mentioned as keeping the Sabbath after his crucifixion, and this is extremely significant.

The Apostle Paul and the Sabbath What about Paul, do you know?

In Acts 18:4-6, Paul disassociates himself from his obligations to his people, the Jews, and turns his attention to the Gentiles: “And he reasoned in the synagogue every Sabbath, persuading both Jews and Greeks in his argument.

He shook his clothes, however, and told them that their blood should be on their own heads, for he was clean; they should be ashamed of themselves.

The reason for this is that Paul went to the Jew first, which was, of course, the most convenient time to do so on the Sabbath because the Jews observed the Sabbath.

Apart from Colossians 2:16, which states, “Therefore let no one judge you in food or drink, or respecting a holiday or a new moon or sabbaths,” the Sabbath is not addressed in the Bible after Acts 18: “Therefore let no one judge you in anything.” It is just mentioned in passing here to demonstrate that it has been eliminated in light of the Dispensation of Grace.

  1. With the exception of the one instance described above, we do not find any reference of the Sabbath in the whole Bible beyond Acts 18.
  2. 9:22), but when they met with Christians, or the church as it is known today, they met on the first day of the week because they believed that the church was the body of Christ (Luke 24:1;John 20:19;Acts 20:7;1 Cor.
  3. 1:10).
  4. It served as a symbol for the Jews throughout history, beginning with Moses and culminating with the execution of Jesus Christ.
  5. 36:16-38).

Keep silent when a son of a non-Jewish immigrant who has pledged his allegiance to the Lord says, “The LORD has completely isolated me from His people,” or when the eunuch says, “Here I am, a dry tree.”” Because the members of His Body, the Church, are not considered to be either Jews or Gentiles in His eyes, the Sabbath is not observed by them.

  1. As we’ve seen, the Sabbath is only relevant to Israel in God’s grand scheme of things.
  2. 31:12-1); (3) because Israel has been scattered, the Sabbath is no longer observed; the Law was completed in Christ, according to Galatians 3:19; (4) when the Jews are restored as God’s earthly nation, the Sabbath will be observed once more.
  3. Special Restrictions on the Observance of the Sabbath There are several aspects of the Sabbath commandment that must be taken into consideration.
  4. “See!
  5. On the seventh day, no one should leave his or her location; no one should come or depart from his or her spot ” (Ex.

For the second, a man was not even permitted to work or to construct a fire: “Then Moses gathered together the entire congregation of the children of Israel and told them, “These are the words that the LORD has commanded you to do: Work shall be done for six days, but the seventh day shall be a holy day for you, a Sabbath of rest to the LORD.” Those who work on it will be put to death if they are caught.

On the Sabbath, you are not permitted to light any fires in any of your dwellings ” (35:1-3).

They took him before Moses and Aaron, as well as the rest of the crowd, after they discovered him collecting sticks.

Then the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, ‘The guy must unquestionably be put to death; the entire assembly should stone him with stones outside of the tent.’ As a result, in accordance with the LORD’s word, the entire assembly marched him outside the camp and stoned him to death with stones ” (Num.

Given that God gave Israel the commandment of the Sabbath when they were in the region of Palestine, which has a warm environment, the commandment was quite practical.

However, what is considerably more important is the fact that people who strive to observe God’s Sabbath, which was originally intended for Israel, quickly find themselves under the curse of the Law.

Anyone who falls into this group would be wise to recognize his or her sins and to seek God’s forgiveness, for it is their only chance.

“Is the law, in this case, in conflict with God’s promises?

For if there had been a law given that could have produced life, then it would have been true righteousness that would have resulted from the law ” (Gal.

Only God’s grace has the ability to save us (Eph.

Salvation is not a reward for living a pure life, but rather a gift from God to a sinner who deserves to be punished.


On the other side, claiming salvation by the obedience of the Law elevates man while diminishing the righteousness of the Law.

(Acts 4:12).

Obviously, this raises the question of how to proceed: So, which day do you consider to be the Sabbath?

There is no such thing as a “Christian Sabbath” in the Christian tradition.

There are far too many fellow believers who are unknowingly and ignorantly referring to it in this manner, and as a result, there is a great deal of misunderstanding.

In this area, Christians are not required to follow any commandments.

The concept of worshiping God one day a week, whether it is the first or the seventh, and then living for oneself the rest of the week is a heinous sin that exists in today’s society today.

This is a fallacy.

The Christian’s Sabbath is a day of celebration.

Is there a certain day that they should observe?

On that day, Jesus rose from the dead, and it was also the day He chose to meet with His disciples after His ascension into heaven.

On the day of the resurrection, the Lord Jesus was quite active.

This has caused a great deal of damage.

The objective of the Lord’s Day is not to do this.

Christians must awaken and realize the significance of this day of resurrection in order to be effective.

For this reason, “whoever knows to do good but does not do it” is considered to be guilty of sin (James 4:17).

It is difficult to go against established customs, but I encourage every Christian to submit himself to the Lord in this subject as well.

Some people believe that sinning on Sunday is more serious than sinning on any other day of the week, and that this is true.

One’s submission to the Devil on any day of the week, according to the Bible, is considered unpleasing to God.

Every day, Christians must live their lives in such a way that their consciences are free of any sin before God. Additionally, they might designate Sunday as a day of particular worship and service to the Lord.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.