Rob Bell On The Sabbath

Ok, I’m on a Bell kick lately as you can see.  Honestly, when Rob is good, he’s really good (and when he’s not, he’s really not.)  But this short interview/discussion with Catalyst was excellent and convicting to me.

Episode 6

He isn’t trying to get Christians to follow the Mosaic Law and practice the “traditional” form of Sabbath keeping (ala Judaism, Seven Day Adventist, etc) but rather calling us to remember that the original intention of the Sabbath was for man to cease from his labor (as God did on the seventh day) so that he can rest, be revived, and remember his God.  It was a mark of remembrance to the Jewish nation after their deliverance from slavery – “you’re not a slave, you don’t have to work everyday, you don’t have to toil for a cruel master, you have been redeemed.”  That’s what they were supposed to get.

For me, it’s something I need to go.  I realized recently that Saturday is my only day “off” and the busy-ness of life, my family, the church, friends, etc tends to leave Saturday for more work and “stuff” to do.  Then I find myself after the weekend just as worn as I was when it started.  Some of this is because of the choices I make and taking on more than I should and not prioritizing well – but, some of it is because I should be fighting for that day to stop the madness!

In a world where we being constantly plugged in and connected can be really good, it also can be the same thing that is our downfall.  I have a laptop.  I have 2 desktops.  I have a Blackberry.  I have an iPod Touch.  I have a house phone that a lot of people know the number to.  I have an active facebook page.  I have a twitter account.  I have two websites to keep updated.  I have two blogs that I write for.  All of this is good – I am able to praise God, get out the gospel, help people, and more – but if I don’t have a day when it gets shut off, it consumes me.  Here are a couple of things that Rob has said which got my attention regarding this subject:

which day of the week is your blackberry off?

Does your spouse get your very best or does your spouse (and kids) get what’s left over (the scraps) after you’ve given your best to the church (or to work)?

So, I am going to try this Sabbath thing out.  I’m not going to make anyone else do it with me, I’m not going to teach on it in our church.  I’m just going to unplug, shut off, and whatever else I need to do so that I can [rest].  I’m going to relax, enjoy my wife, my family, the creation, good food, conversations.  I am going to praise God, drink some coffee, open my Bible, and who knows what else.  But thats going to be my day, God’s day, my family’s day.  So that we can be revived, rest and remember that God has redeemed us, we are His people, and that He is leading us to the Promised Land where there will be the continual rest of life in the age to come.


5 responses to this post.

  1. […] Religion, Sabbath, Victor's Posts. Tagged: Christianity, God, Religion, Sabbath. Leave a Comment Last week was great.  As I start out my new day this morning I was realizing how as Rob Bell said in his podcast, […]


  2. Posted by mohamad on January 18, 2010 at 6:40 pm

    great i like the way you think
    i can only hope one day our scholars of Islam adopt this modern acceptant mode of thinking
    i am not very educated about sabbath however to be honest and i do not personally know any Jews.
    1. what do Sabbaths use to call their congregation (example Christianity has bells, and Islam has the song like call)
    2. is Judaic congregation held in Sabbaths?


  3. The Jews have a Sabbath day which is on the 7th day. The Christians worship on the first day?? No! The 7th day?? There’s a lot of confusion on this but there doesn’t need to be. What is the purpose of Christian worship? To celebrate the coming of a new day in Creation, the Resurrection! What is the new day? It is a day outside of time, outside of this “world.” It can only be the 8th day! And that is not a time of “rest” but a time for holy work in the spirit of the Resurrection, to bring the whole world as an offering to the new day in Christ’s Resurrection, a day on which all becomes new again!


  4. Posted by Jeremy on August 6, 2010 at 11:28 pm

    Here’s what the Seventh-Day Adventist Church says about Sabbath
    The beneficent Creator, after the six days of Creation, rested on the seventh day and instituted the Sabbath for all people as a memorial of Creation. The fourth commandment of God’s unchangeable law requires the observance of this seventh-day Sabbath as the day of rest, worship, and ministry in harmony with the teaching and practice of Jesus, the Lord of the Sabbath. The Sabbath is a day of delightful communion with God and one another. It is a symbol of our redemption in Christ, a sign of our sanctification, a token of our allegiance, and a foretaste of our eternal future in God’s kingdom. The Sabbath is God’s perpetual sign of His eternal covenant between Him and His people. Joyful observance of this holy time from evening to evening, sunset to sunset, is a celebration of God’s creative and redemptive acts. (Gen. 2:1-3; Ex. 20:8-11; Luke 4:16; Isa. 56:5, 6; 58:13, 14; Matt. 12:1-12; Ex. 31:13-17; Eze. 20:12, 20; Deut. 5:12-15; Heb. 4:1-11; Lev. 23:32; Mark 1:32.)

    this is a great discussion of a topic that is sooo prevalent in the Bible, bet so little known!


  5. Am curious to know how your experiment went.


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