The Jewish Sabbath was a day of solemn rest, a holy convocation to God, without works being done.

“Six days you shall 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: you, nor your son, nor your daughter, nor your male servant, nor your female servant, nor your cattle, nor your stranger who is within your gates. For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and hallowed it” (Exod. 20:9-11).

“Six days you shall work, but on the seventh day you shall rest; in plowing time and in harvest you shall rest” (Exod.34:21).

“Six days shall work be done, but the seventh day is a Sabbath of solemn rest, a holy convocation. You shall do no work on it; it is the Sabbath of the Lord in all your dwellings.” (Lev.23:3).

Majority of Christians worship on Sundays because Our Lord resurrected on a Sunday, which is called the Lord’s day (Rev.1: 10).  Few follow the Jewish Sabbath, which is a Saturday.

Now l do not want to talk about the Jewish or the Christian Sabbath nor about which day should be the Sabbath. We are in the New Covenant, therefore, we are not bound by adherence to keeping special days and festivals (Col.2:16 – 17).

The Sabbath l am talking about here is a Sabbath of rest – for all men; which is also a major underlying factor even for the Jewish Sabbath, instituted by God in the Old Covenant.

The Sabbath was not meant to be just a day to honour and worship God, but also a day of solemn rest, and abstinence from works.

God did not need to rest after creation.  The Bible says He neither dozes nor sleeps, neither faints nor wearied (Psalm 121:4; Isaiah 40:28).  He took a break; created nothing on the seventh day to show mankind the necessity of resting from all labour once a week otherwise we will breakdown.  The Sabbath was made for man’s well-being – all men.

“And He said to them, “The Sabbath was made for man, and not man for the Sabbath” (Mark 2:27).

A Sabbath of rest was so necessary for mankind and creation that God had to show it to us by means of demonstration and example: by creating the world in six days and resting on the seventh day; and also repeating it severally in Scriptures.

Life is hectic. l know we are all going to die someday, but there is no need for you to fast forward it!  God doesn’t want you to drive yourself to an early grave.  He wants you to present your body to Him as a living sacrifice (Romans 12:1).

Main motivation people drive themselves to exhaustion is one or all of these:  Money, dreams, goals, family needs, work, carrier, ministry etc.

Doctors are warning that High blood pressure, migraines, stroke, heart attack, heart failure killing many these days are stress induced.

All of God’s laws are meant for our good, but alas even the simplest ones are hardest for man to obey – A SABBATH OF REST.

Even the animals were not exempted from God’s sabbatical rest, if you work them seven days of each week they will eventually break down and die.

Eat healthy foods. Get enough good hours of sleep every day. Go to bed early, don’t watch TV or browse the internet till 12 or 1 am and then wake up at 4 or 5 am, that’s not good sleep or rest.  Adequate sleep and rest helps rest the brain, the heart and the immune cells.

Also cut down on your weekend social functions.  You don’t have to attend every social function at the expense of your health.

People are being stressed up by unnecessary church activities.  They work all week and attend one activity or the other all Sunday and then resume work Monday! 

Now someone staying back after church service just for a quite solitude or fellowship where you share a meal and relate in a relax able atmosphere is good, but when it’s one activity after another or meetings upon meetings, and people are still expected to attend some fellowship in the evening, that’s something else.

Pastor, don’t stress yourself and the people out!  Activities, programs are not ministry.  Your devotional life and walk with God is true ministry, teaching the congregation to know and walk with God is true ministry.

If you must have meetings after service make it quick and brief; don’t exhaust the people by wasting their time and sapping their energy.

Our Lord, when He walked the earth in flesh and blood still found times to rest. 

“But He was in the stern, asleep on a pillow. And they awoke Him and said to Him, “Teacher, do You not care that we are perishing?”(Mark4:38, Matt.8:23-24).

Read through the Gospels and you will find out this was not the only time He found time to rest.

He also taught His apostles the necessity of having quality rest:

“And He said to them, “Come aside by yourselves to a deserted place and rest a while.” For there were many coming and going, and they did not even have time to eat. So they departed to a deserted place in the boat by themselves”(Mark 6:31).

Situations and circumstances that will cause us to worry and be troubled will definitely arise.  However, worrying and sleeplessness don’t change anything but are rather injurious to health.  As children of God we must learn to trust our heavenly Father and commit our concerns into His hands.   (Matthew 6:25-34; Phil.4:6;Prob.3:5-6).

Humans are not supernatural beings.  God has so designed the human body, as well as those of animals, to repair, rebuild, rejuvenate, recuperate, renew, and revitalize itself during restful sleep and rest from hard labour. Failure to do this will result in body and mental breakdown sooner or later.

The Sabbath- a day of rest – is for everyone.  Find a day, a whole day, once a week, when you will rest your brain, mind and body to avoid major body and mental break down.  A day, without stressful thinking, worrying and hard work – complete rest.  Your own Sabbath. 


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