“So then, there remains a Sabbath rest for the people of God, for whoever has entered God’s
rest has also rested from his works as God did from His.” (Hebrews 4:9-10)
Presbyterians have held, based on Hebrews 4 and other passages, that God’s rest was a type
witnessing to the joys of eternal life with Him. As we keep Sabbath, we witness to the world
in word (read, preached, and spoken to others) and deed (resting and worshiping for a day)
that there is eternal life and rest beyond the toil and misery of the fall through faith in Jesus
Christ. We also will have many opportunities to give a reason for the hope that is in us, and
thus to do the important work of personal evangelism.
Recently, my three oldest children (9,8,7) were invited to a birthday party on Sunday afternoon.
Oh no, I thought, we’ve wanted to share the gospel with this single mother and this isn’t
going to help.
A few days later, I was outside and saw her. I told her that the children would not be able to
go Sunday afternoon because we kept the Sabbath as a whole day to the Lord. I explained
that we didn’t keep Sabbath to earn our salvation, as we believe we are sinners forgiven and
given eternal life and rest as a gift of grace through faith in Jesus Christ. But, we believe that
God calls us to rest and worship Him for a whole day that we might honor Him, commune
with Him, and be instructed and encouraged in our faith and hope.
Her response was, “That’s really beautiful” and then asked about coming to church. I gave her
the information and her and her son for ice cream at our house the next week to celebrate his
birthday, which she did.
Why was I worried? I had forgotten that the Lord’s Day is a witness to eternal life, and that
keeping it is therefore a significant step towards fulfilling our calling to the important work of