Original Research

The Sabbath as a remedy for human restlessness

Volker Kessler
In die Skriflig/In Luce Verbi | Vol 46, No 2 | a61 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/ids.v46i2.61 | © 2012 Volker Kessler | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 10 July 2012 | Published: 23 November 2012

About the author(s)

Volker Kessler, Department of Philosophy, Practical and Systematic Theology, University of South Africa, South Africa

Abstract

Considering that many people today suffer from restlessness, it would be very helpful to remind ourselves of a very old, very simple but very effective  remedy: rest on the Sabbath. In the Christian tradition, Sabbath-keeping often only focused on its  spiritual aspects. This article has focused on the benefit of rediscovering the gift of the Sabbath  as ‘a delight to the soul and a delight for the body’ (Heschel). It has shown how we can explicitly  learn from the Jewish tradition of holistic Sabbath observance. The article consists of four  parts: the phenomenon of human restlessness, ten different facets of the Sabbath in the Old  Testament, a short section on the history of pro-Sabbath and anti-Sabbath attitudes within the  Christian churches and a concluding section about applying the basic principles of the Sabbath  in modern life for the sake of a good work-life balance. Examples from the German context  are included.

Die Sabbat as kuur teen menslike rusteloosheid. Wanneer die hedendaagse rusteloosheid van mense in ag geneem word, het dit  waarde om onsself aan ‘n baie ou, eenvoudige dog effektiewe maatreël tot herstel te herinner, naamlik om op die  sabbat te rus. In die Christelike tradisie fokus sabbatsonderhouding dikwels slegs op godsdienstige  aspekte. Hierdie artikel het gefokus op die wins in die herontdekking van die  sabbatsgeskenk as ‘n ‘behae vir die siel en die liggaam’ (Heschel). Dit toon duidelik hoe ons uit die Joodse tradisie van ‘n holistiese sabbatsonderhouding kan leer. Die artikel het bestaan uit vier dele,  naamlik die verskynsel van menslike rusteloosheid, tien verskillende fasette van die sabbat  in die Ou Testament, ‘n kort historiese oorsig oor pro- en teen-standpunte van die  Christelike kerk ten opsigte van die sabbat, en ten slotte die toepassing van basiese  sabbatsbeginsels in die moderne lewe ter handhawing van ‘n goeie balans tussen werk en lewe. Voorbeelde  uit die Duitse konteks is ook ingesluit.


Keywords

Abraham Heschel; restlessness; Sabbath; Sunday; work-life-balance

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Crossref Citations

1. Guidelines for the spiritual practice of Sabbath-keeping
Pieter G.R. de Villiers, George Marchinkowski
HTS Teologiese Studies/Theological Studies  vol: 77  issue: 2  year: 2021  
doi: 10.4102/hts.v77i2.6771