Saturday, June 6, 2009

What is Sabbath?

Sabbath \Sab"bath\, n. [OE. sabat, sabbat, F. sabbat, L. sabbatum, Gr. sa`bbaton, fr. Heb. shabb[=a]th, fr. sh[=a]bath to rest from labor. Cf. Sabbat.]

Definitions of Sabbath:

1. A season or day of rest; one day in seven appointed for rest or worship, the observance of which was enjoined upon the Jews in the Decalogue, and has been continued by the Christian church with a transference of the day observed from the last to the first day of the week, which is called also Lord's Day. (

2. The seventh year, observed among the Israelites as one of rest and festival. --Lev. xxv. 4. (

3. The Biblical seventh day of the week, observed as a day of rest in Judaism, Seventh-day Adventism, or Seventh Day Baptism, starting at sundown on Friday till sundown on Saturday; Sunday, observed throughout the majority of Christianity as a day of rest. ... (

4. A day of rest and worship: Sunday for most Christians; Saturday for the Jews and a few Christians; Friday for Muslims(hypernym) rest day, day of rest (

5. According to the first chapter of Genesis, God created the world in six days and on the seventh he rested. Therefore, Judaism holds that the seventh day is a holy day, and on it no profane work should be done. The sabbath starts at sundown Friday evening and lasts to sundown on Saturday. In the synagogue, this is usually a day for a worship service­sometimes two, one Friday evening and another Saturday morning. These services include prayers, music, sermons, and reading the Torah (i.e., the Pentateuch). In Orthodox households, the prohibition against work is taken quite seriously. People do not drive on the Sabbath but instead walk; they will not cook and so prepare their meals ahead of time; they can read, but they will not write. (Official Judaism Glossary)

6. (shabbath), "a day of rest," from shabath "to cease to do to," "to rest"). The name is applied to divers great festivals, but principally and usually to the seventh day of the week, the strict observance of which is enforced not merely in the general Mosaic code, but in the Decalogue itself. The consecration of the Sabbath was coeval with the creation. The first scriptural notice of it, though it is not mentioned by name, is to be found in (Genesis 2:3) at the close of the record of the six-days creation. (Smith's Bible Dictionary)


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