Shabbos in the Written Torah

December 22, 2021 - Tevet 18 5782 

What Does the Torah Say About the Sabbath?

Genesis 2:1-3:

Now the heavens and the earth were completed and all their host. And God completed on the seventh day His work (melachto - מְלַאכְתּ֖וֹ) that He did, and He abstained on the seventh day from all His work (melachto - מְלַאכְתּ֖וֹ) that He did. And God blessed the seventh day and He hallowed it, for thereon He abstained from all His work (melachto - מְלַאכְתּ֔וֹ) that God created to do.

Exodus 20:8-11:

Remember the Sabbath day to sanctify it. Six days may you work and perform all your labor (melachtecha - מְלַאכְתֶּךָ֒), but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the Lord, your God; you shall perform no labor (melacha - מְלָאכָ֡ה), neither you, your son, your daughter, your manservant, your maidservant, your beast, nor your stranger who is in your cities. For [in] six days the Lord made the heaven and the earth, the sea and all that is in them, and He rested on the seventh day. Therefore, the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and sanctified it.

Exodus 15:23-30:

So he said to them, That is what the Lord spoke, Tomorrow is a rest day, a holy Sabbath to the Lord. Bake whatever you wish to bake, and cook whatever you wish to cook, and all the rest leave over to keep until morning. So they left it over until morning, as Moses had commanded, and it did not become putrid, and not a worm was in it. And Moses said, "Eat it today, for today is a Sabbath to the Lord; today you will not find it in the field. Six days you shall gather it, but on the seventh day [which is the] Sabbath on it there will be none."

It came about that on the seventh day, [some] of the people went out to gather [manna], but they did not find [any]. The Lord said to Moses, "How long will you refuse to observe My commandments and My teachings? See that the Lord has given you the Sabbath. Therefore, on the sixth day, He gives you bread for two days. Let each man remain in his place; let no man leave his place on the seventh day. So the people rested on the seventh day."

Note: Contrast this with Matthew 12:1-2:

At that time Jesus went through the grainfields on the Sabbath. His disciples were hungry and began to pick some heads of grain and eat them. When the Pharisees saw this, they said to him, “Look! Your disciples are doing what is unlawful on the Sabbath.”

Exodus 31:13-17:

"And you, speak to the children of Israel and say: 'Only keep My Sabbaths! For it is a sign between Me and you for your generations, to know that I, the Lord, make you holy. Therefore, keep the Sabbath, for it is a sacred thing for you. Those who desecrate it shall be put to death, for whoever performs work (melacha - מְלָאכָ֔ה) on it, that soul will be cut off from the midst of its people. Six days work (melacha - מְלָאכָה֒) may be done, but on the seventh day is a Sabbath of complete rest, holy to the Lord; whoever performs work (melacha - מְלָאכָ֛ה) on the Sabbath day shall be put to death.' Thus shall the children of Israel observe the Sabbath, to make the Sabbath throughout their generations as an everlasting covenant between Me and the children of Israel, it is forever a sign that [in] six days The Lord created the heaven and the earth, and on the seventh day He ceased (shavat - שָׁבַ֖ת) and rested."

Exodus 34:21:

"Six days you may work, and on the seventh day you shall rest (tishbot - תִּשְׁבֹּ֑ת); in plowing and in harvest you shall rest (tishbot - תִּשְׁבֹּ֑ת)."

Exodus 35:1-3:

Moses called the whole community of the children of Israel to assemble, and he said to them: "These are the things that the Lord commanded to make. Six days work (melacha - מְלָאכָה֒) may be done, but on the seventh day you shall have sanctity, a day of complete rest (shabbat shabbaton - שַׁבַּ֥ת שַׁבָּת֖וֹן) to the Lord; whoever performs work (melacha - מְלָאכָה֒) thereon [on this day] shall be put to death. You shall not kindle fire in any of your dwelling places on the Sabbath day."

Isaiah 56:2:

Fortunate is the man who will do this and the person who will hold fast to it, he who keeps the Sabbath from profaning it and guards his hand from doing any evil.

Isaiah 58:13-14:

If you restrain your foot because of the Sabbath, from performing your affairs on My holy day, and you call the Sabbath a delight, the holy of the Lord honored, and you honor it by not doing your wonted ways, by not pursuing your affairs and speaking words.

Jeremiah 17:21-22:

So said the Lord: Beware for your souls and carry no burden on the Sabbath day, nor bring into the gates of Jerusalem. Neither shall you take a burden out of your houses on the Sabbath day nor shall you perform any labor, and you shall hallow the Sabbath day as I commanded your forefathers.

Jeremiah 17:24-25:

And it shall be if you hearken to Me, says the Lord, not to bring any burden into the gates of this city on the Sabbath day and to hallow the Sabbath day not to perform any labor (melacha - מְלָאכָֽה) thereon, then shall there enter into the gates of this city kings and princes sitting on David's throne, riding in chariots and with horses, they and their princes, the men of Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and this city shall be inhabited forever.

Jeremiah 17:27:

And if you will not hearken to Me to hallow the Sabbath day and not to carry burdens and to come into the gates of Jerusalem on the Sabbath, I will kindle a fire in her gates, and it will consume the palaces of Jerusalem, and it will not be quenched.

Nechemiah 13:15-22:

In those days, I saw in Judea [people] treading winepresses on the Sabbath and bringing stacks [of grain] and loading them on donkeys, and also wine, grapes, and figs, and all types of loads and bringing them to Jerusalem on the Sabbath day, and I warned them on the day they sold provisions. And the Tyrians [who] sojourned there were bringing fish and all [types of] merchandise and selling on the Sabbath to the people of Judea and in Jerusalem. And I quarreled with the dignitaries of Judea, and I said to them, "What is this bad thing that you are doing-profaning the Sabbath day? Did not your ancestors do this, and our God brought upon us all this calamity, and upon this city, and you are increasing the wrath upon Israel by profaning the Sabbath?" Now it came to pass when the gates of Jerusalem cast shadows before the Sabbath, that I commanded, and the doors were closed, and I said that they should not open them until after the Sabbath, and I stationed some of my youths over the gates so that no load should enter on the Sabbath day. So the traffickers and the vendors of all types of merchandise lodged outside Jerusalem once and twice. And I warned them and said to them, "Why are you lodging opposite the wall? If you repeat [this], I shall lay a hand on you." Since that time, they did not come on the Sabbath. And I commanded the Levites that the watchers of the walls should purify themselves and come to hallow the Sabbath day. This too remember for me, my God, and have pity on me according to Your abundant loving-kindness.

1 comment:

Unknown said...

The Sabbath is one of the commandments Gentiles steal from the Jews most, despite the clear ruling of Maimonides in Laws of Kings 10:9: "Similarly, a gentile who rests, even on a weekday, observing that day as a Sabbath, is obligated to die. Needless to say, he is obligated for that punishment if he creates a festival for himself."