When we are asked by leaders in our congregations to do something or to believe something in regards to Scripture, we should always be like the Bereans and test everything against Scripture itself (Acts 17:11)... the whole of Scripture (2 Tim 3:16-17). If a person feels "led by the spirit" to speak, behave, or believe a certain way, they should test that spirit (1 John 4:1) and see whether what that spirit is telling them to do is in agreement or disagreement with Scripture.

Let us take a journey together through Scripture and see what it says about the matter of the Sabbath... a "walk in the Word" so to speak. As we take this walk, may we say, believe, and do what is right, be merciful in our speech and actions, and walk humbly with the Lord (Micah 6:8).

If you find a verse that is not referenced regarding the Sabbath and think it should be, please contact the author.

Scriptural quotations are from the New American Standard Bible (NASB) unless otherwise noted. Bolded text or other emphases in the Scriptural references are the author's.

This is the summary of an exhaustive examination of what Scripture says about the Sabbath. 

You may want to read the introduction to this series if you have not done so already.

There is also a question and answer article available.


If you jumped straight here hoping for a short conclusion you may be in for a shock. :)  Details about the Sabbath abound throughout Scripture.  In fact, starting from the beginning of Scripture and examining every passage that uses the words in Hebrew or Greek that are translated as "Sabbath" we have compiled the following list of 87 facts about the Sabbath day. This list is intended to be exhaustive, however, if you are aware of another observation regarding the Sabbath that should be included, please contact the author.

  1. The Sabbath is the seventh day. (Exodus 35:2)
  2. The Sabbath is a holy day. (Exodus 35:2, Deuteronomy 5:12, Isaiah 58:13, Jeremiah 17:22)
  3. The Sabbath is a complete rest to the LORD. (Exodus 35:2)
  4. Whoever does any work [melakhah] on it shall be put to death. (Exodus 35:2)
  5. Fires should not be kindled in any of the Israelite dwellings on the Sabbath day. (Exodus 35:3)
  6. Sabbath can refer to the weekly event or the annual day of Yom Kippur. (Leviticus 16:31)
  7. The Sabbaths should be kept because G-d is the LORD our G-d. (Leviticus 19:30, 26:2)
  8. The Sabbaths are associated with G-d's sanctuary (Leviticus 19:30, 26:2)
  9. The seventh day Sabbath is the first among G-d's appointed times [moedim]. (Leviticus 23:3)
  10. You shall not do any work on the Sabbath. (Leviticus 23:3, Deuteronomy 5:14, Jeremiah 17:22)
  11. The Sabbath is a day to the Lord in all your dwellings (Leviticus 23:3)
  12. The lamp and the bread (pictures of Messiah) are to be set before G-d on the Sabbath day. (Leviticus 24:8)
  13. The Land of Israel has a Sabbath every 7 years (the Sh'mittah year). (Leviticus 25:2)
  14. The Yovel year every 50th year is a special Sabbath year where the Land is returned to its original owners, captives are released, and crops are not harvested. (Leviticus 25:8-13)
  15. The Land will rest and enjoy its Sabbaths. (Leviticus 26:34-35)
  16. The Land will have its Sabbaths while the Israelites are in captivity away from the land because they rejected G-d's ordinances and statutes. (Leviticus 26:43)
  17. Gathering wood on the Sabbath is a violation of the commandments regarding the Sabbath day and is punishable by death. (Numbers 15:32-36)
  18. The Sabbath day sacrifices in the Tabernacle are to be unblemished lambs. (Numbers 28:9-10)
  19. G-d commanded:
    1. Israel should observe the Sabbath day. (Deuteronomy 5:12)
    2. Israel should keep the Sabbath day holy. (Deuteronomy 5:12)
    3. Israel should labor for six days (Deuteronomy 5:13) but not do any work on the seventh day. (Deuteronomy 5:14)
    4. Israel's children, servants, animals, or visitors should not work on the seventh. day (Deuteronomy 5:14)
    5. The reason that Israel is to honor a specific day is because G-d brought the Israelites out of slavery in Egypt with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm (Deuteronomy 5:15)
  20. Violations of the Sabbath include these activities that profane (Nehemiah 13:17) the day:
    1. Treading the wine press. (Nehemiah 13:15)
    2. Bringing in sacks of grain. (Nehemiah 13:15)
    3. Loading burdens (sacks of grain) onto animals. (Nehemiah 13:15)
    4. Selling food (Nehemiah 13:15)
  21. The Levites were to purify themselves and serve as gatekeepers to sanctify the Sabbath day (Nehemiah 13:22)

    The following passages found in Isaiah regarding the "Sabbath" may be referring to a specific Sabbath: Yom Kippur.  We note these passages with the caveat that they may be specifically referring to Yom Kippur and not the weekly Sabbath.
  22. Justice, G-d's righteousness, G-d's salvation are associated with the Sabbath. (Isaiah 56:1-2)
  23. There is blessing given to those who keep from profaning the Sabbath and keeps his hand from doing any evil. (Isaiah 56:2)
  24. The foreigner who has joined himself to the Lord should not think he is separate from G-d's people. (Isaiah 56:3)
  25. To those who keep the sabbaths, choose what pleases G-d, and hold fast to G-d's covenant they will receive:
    1. G-d's house (Isaiah 56:5)
    2. Within G-d's house: a memorial (Isaiah 56:5)
    3. A name better than that of sons and daughters, an everlasting name which will not be cut off. (Isaiah 56:5)
  26. To those who join themselves to the Lord, to minister to Him, and to love the name of the Lord, to be His servants, and keeps from profaning the Sabbath while holding fast to His covenant:
    1. They will be brought to G-d's holy mountain (Isaiah 56:7)
    2. G-d will make them joyful in His house of prayer. (Isaiah 56:7)
    3. Their burnt offerings and sacrifices will be acceptable on His altar. (Isaiah 56:7)
  27. Blessings are to be found:
    1. If we:
      1. turn our feet from doing our own pleasure on G-d's holy Sabbath day (Isaiah 58:13)
      2. call it a delight (Isaiah 58:13)
      3. call it honorable (Isaiah 58:13)
      4. honor it (Isaiah 58:13)
      5. desisting from our own ways (Isaiah 58:13)
      6. desisting from seeking our own pleasure and speaking our own word (Isaiah 58:13)
    2. then:
      1. We will take delight in the LORD (Isaiah 58:14)
      2. G-d will make us ride on the heights of the earth (Isaiah 58:14)
      3. G-d will feed us with the heritage of Ya'akov our father (Isaiah 58:14)
    3. For the mouth of the LORD has spoken. (Isaiah 58:14)
  28. In the world to come the Sabbath will be observed and used to mark time (Isaiah 66:23-24)

  29. Do not carry any load on the Sabbath (Jeremiah 17:21)
  30. Do not bring a load out of your houses on the Sabbath (Jeremiah 17:22)
  31. Do not do any work on the Sabbath day (Jeremiah 17:22)
  32. Keep the Sabbath day holy (Jeremiah 17:22)
  33. There is blessing in keeping the Sabbath day (Jeremiah 17:24-26)
  34. There are consequences in violating the Sabbath day (Jeremiah 17:27)
  35. The Sabbath was given by G-d (Ezekiel 20:12)
  36. The Sabbath was given so that Israel would know that it was G-d who sanctified them (Ezekiel 20:12)
  37. G-d's Sabbaths were greatly profaned by Israel as a result of rebellion (Ezekiel 20:13)
    1. G-d resolved to annihilate Israel as a consequence (Ezekiel 20:13)
    2. G-d acted for the sake of His name that it would not be profaned in the sight of the nations (Ezekiel 20:14)
  38. Israel's violation of the Sabbath stemmed from idolatry (Ezekiel 20:16)
  39. G-d commands the children of the idolatrous generation:
    1. "Sanctify [His] Sabbaths" (Ezekiel 20:20)
    2. The Sabbaths will be a sign between Israel and G-d (Ezekiel 20:20)
    3. The Sabbaths will help Israel know that He is YHVH their G-d (Ezekiel 20:20)
  40. The children [of those who left Egypt] also rebelled against G-d by profaning His Sabbaths (Ezekiel 20:21)
    1. G-d resolved to pour out His wrath (Ezekiel 20:21)
    2. G-d withdrew His hand and acted for the sake of His name that it should not be profaned (Ezekiel 20:22)
    3. Israel would be scattered among the nations because they had profaned the Sabbaths (Ezekiel 20:24)
  41. Profaning the Sabbath is repeatedly associated with:
    1. Rebellion against G-d (Ezekiel 20:13, 21)
    2. Failing to walk in G-d's statutes (Ezekiel 20:13, 16, 21, 24)
    3. Rejection of G-d's ordinances (Ezekiel 20:13, 16, 21, 24)
  42. The Sabbath [and other appointed feasts] will be celebrated in the Kingdom. (Ezekiel 44:24)
  43. The prince will provide the burnt offerings for the Sabbath. (Ezekiel 45:17)
  44. The east-facing door to the inner court of the Temple shall be shut except on the Sabbath day and the day of the new moon. (Ezekiel 46:1)
  45. The people of the land will worship at the doorway of the east gate before the Lord on the Sabbaths and new moons. (Ezekiel 46:3)
  46. There are specific offerings to be made by the prince on the Sabbath day. (Ezekiel 46:4-5)
  47. The blessing of the Sabbath is stripped from Israel because of her idolatry. (Hosea 2:11)
  48. Those who seek for a speedy end of the Sabbath to engage in commerce are equated with those who lie, cheat, and trample the needy. (Amos 8:4-6)
  49. Sustaining life (e.g. by eating) is of greater priority than avoiding work on the Sabbath. (Matthew 12:1-8, Mark 2:23-28, Luke 6:1-5)
  50. Yeshua (the Son of Man) is Lord of the Sabbath. (Matthew 12:8, Mark 2:28, Luke 6:5)
  51. Healing on the Sabbath is lawful. (Matthew 12:10-12, Mark 3:2-5, Luke 6:6-10, Luke 13:10-17, Luke 14:3-4)
  52. It is lawful to do good on the Sabbath. (Matthew 12:12, Mark 3:2-5, Luke 6:9-10)
  53. Messiah taught in synagogues on the Sabbath. (Mark 1:21, Mark 6:2, Luke 4:16, Luke 4:31,33, Luke 13:10)
  54. The Sabbath was made for man and not man for the Sabbath. (Mark 2:27)
  55. The Sabbath is used as a reference point to describe the days of the week. (Mark 16:2, Mark 16:9, Luke 18:12, Luke 24:1, John 20:1, John 20:19, Acts 20:7, 1 Corinthians 16:2)
  56. Prohibition of healing on the Sabbath is hypocritical. (Luke 13:15)
  57. Taking care of animals on the Sabbath is permitted. (Luke 13:15)
  58. The healing of a woman held in bondage by Satan is appropriate on the Sabbath. (Luke 13:16)
  59. Messiah went into the house of one of the leaders of the Pharisees on the Sabbath to eat bread (Luke 14:1)
  60. Pulling a son or ox out of the well (as an example of doing good) is allowed on the Sabbath day. (Luke 14:5)
  61. The women who had come with Messiah out of the Galilee saw the tomb and how His body was laid before the Sabbath. (Luke 23:55)
  62. The women prepared spices and perfumes for Messiah's body before the Sabbath. (Luke 23:55)
  63. The women who had come with Messiah out of the Galilee rested on the Sabbath day according to the commandment. (Luke 23:56)
  64. Messiah healed on the Sabbath. (John 5:8-9)
  65. Judaism in the first century prohibited carrying a pallet on the Sabbath. (John 5:10)
  66. Certain Jews were persecuting Messiah because He healed on the Sabbath and told a man to pick up his pallet on the Sabbath. (John 5:16)
  67. Messiah works on the Sabbath in the manner His Father works on the Sabbath. (John 5:17)
  68. Messiah was breaking the Sabbath in the eyes of some Jews. (John 5:18)
  69. On the Sabbath a man is circumcised and the day is not violated. (John 7:22)
  70. Making an entire man well on the Sabbath does not violate the Sabbath. (John 7:23)
  71. Messiah healed a blind man on the Sabbath by making clay and putting it on his eyes. (John 9:14)
  72. Some Jews thought that Messiah was not keeping the Sabbath. (John 9:16)
  73. Some Jews thought Messiah was not from G-d because He did not keep the Sabbath according to their expectations and rules. (John 9:16)
  74. The Jews did not want bodies left on "the cross" [singular with the definite article] and asked Pilate that the legs of the men might be broken. (John 19:31)
  75. The day Messiah died was the day before a "high Sabbath" [i.e. the first day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread (Exodus 12:15-20)]. (John 19:13)
  76. The Sabbath day had a proscribed distance to limit traveling on the day. (Acts 1:12)
  77. After the resurrection of Messiah the disciples still kept within the boundaries proscribed for the Sabbath day's journey. (Acts 1:12)
  78. Paul and his companions went to synagogue on the Sabbath. (Acts 13:14)
  79. The words of the prophets were read every Sabbath. (Acts 13:27)
  80. The people [men of Israel and G-d fearers (Acts 13:16) of Pisidion Antioch (Acts 13:14)] begged Paul and Barnabas to speak again regarding the Messiah the next Sabbath. (Acts 13:42)
  81. On the Sabbath following Paul & Barnabas' first visit, nearly the whole city [of Pisidion Antioch (Acts 13:14)] assembled to hear the word of the Lord. (Acts 13:44)
  82. Moses (the Law) is [present tense] read in the synagogues of believers every Sabbath. (Acts 15:21)
  83. Paul, Luke, and their companions went to a riverside outside the gate of Philippi (Acts 16:11-12) on the Sabbath and began speaking to the women who had assembled. (Acts 16:13)
  84. Paul reasoned with the men of the synagogue at Thessalonica (Acts 17:1) for three Sabbaths and some of the Jews and a large number of G-d fearing Greeks and a number of the leading women were persuaded . (Acts 17:2-4)
  85. Paul reasoned in the synagogue at Corinth (Acts 18:4) trying to persuade both Jews and Greeks. (Acts 18:4)
  86. No one is to act as a judge when a believer keeps a Sabbath day. (Colossians 2:16)
  87. There remains a Sabbath rest for the people of G-d. (Hebrews 4:9)


Armed with all of this information, the Psalm11918.org team answered a number of questions about the Sabbath.


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