Sorry for the long wait for my follow up post on Shabbat. Between weddings, homeschooling and sicknesses, I have been otherwise tied up. I wanted to be sure to get this out there before another Sabbath passed though. So here it is!
How do you observe the Sabbath?
The Rabbi’s have added many, many stipulations to God’s word over the years. Although I understand what they are trying to do by interpreting their own rules into the Law, I am not looking to conform to man. Sola Scriptura.
From what I have found in my study of Scripture, everyone who wants to observe the Sabbath should:
1. Not cook or gather (purchase) food (Exodus 16:23-29)
2.Keep the day holy (Exodus 20:8)
3.Do no work (and don’t cause others to either) (Exodus 20:9-10)
4.Don’t make a fire (Exodus 35:3)
5.Remember (Deut. 5:15)
6.Do good (Matt. 12:12)
Beyond that, and including that, I believe that the Lord will convict you about how and what your and your family should do. And as I have said before, It’s a process.
As for our family, here is what we do accordingly:
1.I do not cook and make sure all of our food is purchased and prepared ahead of time. This is where a couple loaves of challah and a slow cooker come in handy.
2. We study the Word. Either personally, as a family, or with a small group of other like-minded believers.
3. We don’t preform the work that we do as our normal occupation. As a homemaker, that means I do not cook, clean, plan or homeschool.
4. No fire? This isn’t a usual thing in our house, so no big deal.
5. We remember by observing a Christian Erev Shabbat ceremony on Friday nights (I will explain more below.)
6. We are still working on this part and would like to start doing some sort of service or outreach as a family on this day.
It is important to keep in mind that Jesus said “The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath.” (Mark 2:27). This is a gift to us. It is a way for us to grow closer to Adonai and walk more like Jesus (who clearly observed the Sabbath all throughout His time here). It is not a legalistic burden. It is a joy!
Our family has really grown and we so look forward to Sabbath Eve (Erev Shabbat) every week. We have taken some traditional rituals and made them our own. Each week is a little different, but these things always stay the same:
1. We light 2 white candles. One symbolizes creation (when Shabbat was instituted) and one symbolizes redemptin (when Christ bought us back).
2. We read the Scriptures that tell us to remember and observe the Sabbath.
3. We have communion. The challah (one three braided one for the trinity and one seven braided one for the creation week) is blessed and used as Christ’s body which was broken for us. The grape juice (and wine) which symbolizes Yeshua’s blood poured out for our sins.
4. We pray. Each of us takes a turn praying for friends, family, neighbors. We give thanks and adoration.
5. We sing a hymn. Each week one of the children picks a song from the hymn book we have and we sing it as a family.
6. We sing and dance to Shalom Aleichem.
7. Saturday is often different but as often as possible we meet up for fellowship with other believers.
8. On Sunday morning when the kids wake up I have cleared away the burnt candles, vase of flowers, challah plate, etc. and placed a bowl of something sweet for them. Jesus’ resurrection is a sweet gift!
There you have it! Nothing fancy. Very personal. Poignant when you think about everything it means. When you realize people all over the world are doing the same thing. Resting in Adonai. Finding peace and strength for the week ahead. Why would we not?