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Honour the Sabbath

There is an ancient Jewish prayer that states that the Sabbath as a day of rest has not been granted to all people but is God’s gift to the children of Israel.

We Christians are the heirs of the biblical people of Israel, and thus we are also entitled to our own day of rest.

The world does not recognize any single, rightful day of rest. The Muslims of Palestine observe Friday as such, the Jews Saturday and the Christians Sunday, and in each case the idea is the same, to turn people’s attention away from everyday matters and towards other things.

But what other things? Is rest as a biblical concept a duty or a privilege?

Sunday was not created just for sleeping. On the contrary, ancient Christian tradition emphasizes the observance of the Lord’s Day by remaining awake and keeping watch.

It is for this reason that the Orthodox Church begins its observance of Sunday with its service of the Vigil, starting around sunset on the Saturday evening.

The Lord’s Day is also observed by spending time with one’s family and friends. In fact, the forging of contacts with other people includes not only social contacts with friends but also the giving of alms to those in material need.

The Lord’s Day is an opportunity to stop still for a while and remember that we are all children of Adam.

We should use our Sundays to learn to treat other people, no matter who they are, as our brothers and sisters.

 

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