All Christians refer to Jesus as our savior since he came down from glory to be a man so that he can suffer and pay for our sins. Through his suffering, crucifixion, death, and resurrection, we were washed clean and thus faced no condemnation before God the father. Christ came to give us rest from the labor of our sins so that we may have eternal life. However, is he our Sabbath rest? Is Jesus our Sabbath rest?
Theologians agree that Jesus is the fulfillment of our Sabbath rest. Sabbath was originally made to give man rest from all the toil and labor we engage in. Therefore, through Jesus, we get salvation by grace and mercy; hence we do not have to labor through our works to achieve it. Because of his death on the cross, the laboring man was involved in attaining rest and favor before the eyes of God came to an end.
So, what is Sabbath according to the Bible? How does the Bible define Sabbath rest? Where in the Bible does it say Jesus is our Sabbath rest? What did Jesus teach on Sabbath? What does it mean that Jesus is our Sabbath rest? What did Jesus mean when he said he was the Lord of the Sabbath? Did Jesus say he was Sabbath? Why did Jesus heal and perform miracles on the day of the Sabbath? Continue reading to get more information and answers to these questions and more.
What is Sabbath according to the Bible?
Sabbath is simply rest. The word Sabbath was derived from the Hebrew word sabat, which means to stop working or to take rest. Sabbath has its origin in the creation period. Genesis 2:2 reads, “And on the seventh day God finished his work that he had done, and he rested on the seventh day from all the work that he had done.” This does not mean that our creator was literally tired because we know he is all-powerful. So, what it means that he rested on the Sabbath is that he stopped doing whatever he was doing.
How does the Bible define Sabbath rest?
Though there is no explicit definition of the Sabbath in the Bible, we have seen above that God used the example of him resting on day seven of creation to establish the Sabbath day principle. In the books of Deuteronomy 5:12-15 and Exodus 20:8-11, God tells the Israelites that they have to observe the Sabbath day and keep it holy. Therefore, they were to take one of the days and cease any kind of labor, be it physical or spiritual. The Bible defines Sabbath as a day when we must cease to work and put everything off so that we can resume after one day of rest. We should not be engaged in any kind of work during Sabbath.
Where in the Bible does it say Jesus is our Sabbath rest?
The Bible does not mention that Jesus is our Sabbath rest but indicates so. Theologians note that we received rest by Jesus dying on the cross. Mathew 11:28-29 says, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.” By Christ dying for us, all our spiritual labors were put to rest as we no longer have to work for our salvation, but we can receive eternal life by simply believing in him.
What did Jesus teach on Sabbath?
Jesus was healing on the Sabbath day when the Pharisees came to rebuke him because they believed the Sabbath day was to be observed and kept holy. However, Jesus responded to them and told them that the Sabbath day was created for man, not the other way around. And with that, he said that he is the Lord of the Sabbath. Jesus simply wanted the Pharisees to know that he had authority over the Sabbath day and not the other way around.
What does it mean that Jesus is our Sabbath rest?
Jesus is our Sabbath rest because he took away all the labor and works we had to do for us to gain salvation. To understand why Jesus is referred to as our Sabbath rest, then we have to look at the different symbols of how the Sabbath was used in the Old Testament. It often symbolizes the coming of Jesus Christ, who will offer humanity permanent rest. In the Old Testament, the Jews were in constant labor to please God, and they mostly gained favor before God’s eyes through their righteous works. They strictly observed the Laws of Moses, ceremonial laws, traditional laws, and any other laws set by the high priests to gain favor before God.
However, when Jesus came into the picture and gave himself up to pay the price of sins, we were delivered from the labor of having to work hard to be saved. Titus 3:5 reads, “He saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit.”
What did Jesus mean when he said he was the Lord of Sabbath?
Jesus referred to himself as the Lord of the Sabbath in Mark 2:28, “The son of man is Lord even of the Sabbath.” Theologians note that Jesus said he was the Lord of the Sabbath to proclaim that he is the one who gives authority over any regulation and rule that governs or is practiced during the Sabbath day.
Jesus was simply letting the Pharisees and the teachers of the law know that he is above any other law; in fact, he is the author of the laws that we need to be observed because he is God in the flesh. Therefore, since he is the Lord of the Sabbath, he has all the power and authority to do with it whatever he pleases.
Did Jesus say he was Sabbath?
Jesus referred to himself as the Lord of Sabbath in the three gospels of Luke 6:5, Mathew 12:8, and Mark 2:28. Luke 6:5 reads, “And he said to them, the son of man is the Lord of Sabbath.” Therefore, Jesus did not call himself Sabbath but the Lord of Sabbath, meaning he had authority over the rules we observe during Sabbath.
However, even originally, Christ was the author of Sabbath because he is the creator (John 1:3). Therefore, being God in the flesh, Christ had and still has the authority to overrule any regulations and traditions because, in the first place, Sabbath came to be because of him.
Why did Jesus heal and perform miracles on the day of the Sabbath?
Jesus, through his response to the Pharisees, hints at why he performed miracles on the Sabbath day. He notes that Sabbath was made for man, and he is the Lord of the Sabbath. And us knowing that he is fully God who came in the form of flesh to die for our sins gives a clear picture that he created Sabbath and has the authority to do with it whatever he pleases. He has the authority to dictate which kind of rest we should take on the Sabbath and how the Sabbath should be observed.
As a devout Christian, I have always been passionate about the Christian faith. This inspired me to pursue a degree in Religious studies and a Masters in Theology in college. I have also been privileged to teach 4 Christian courses in a college and university. Since I am dedicated to spreading the word of God, I am actively involved in the Church. Additionally, I share his word online and cover diverse topics on the Christian faith through my platform. You can read more about me on the about us page.