Shabbat Shalom

Shabbat Shalom is a Sabbath greeting. We say it in our Synagogue every Saturday morning.  I am a Christian pastor. My father is also a pastor, so I grew up in a pastors home. I’m what people refer to as a “PK“. A preachers kid. Growing up in church there were things we simply didn’t do on Sunday. It’s the Christian day of rest. It is not however, The biblical Sabbath.  My intention in bringing this up is not to cause division. I’m simply stating a fact. The Sabbath is on the seventh day. Saturday. For us as Gentiles from a Christian background, it’s perfectly fine to worship on the first day of the week. This is a long tradition in the church. However, God gave the Jewish people A special gift when he gave them the Sabbath. When we say “Shabbat shalom” we are not just wishing Sabbath piece on someone. The word shalom has a much richer meaning than that. Yes, it means peace. But it also means wholeness, well-being, completeness.   If you have found my site, you are obviously a Jewish person or a non-Jew who is interested in Jewish things. If you are Jewish, I think you should be honoring the Sabbath. If you are not, I think you and I are welcome to partake in the peace and rest that the Sabbath has to offer.  In the synagogue we sing a song every week called  ‘v’Shamru’.  It’s a song based on the passage of scripture where it says “and the children of Israel shall keep the Shabbat…“.    The title of the song comes from the root word shomer (sho-MAIR).  This is a word that means keep or guard. Boaz Michael, the founder and president of FFOZ, told me one time that more than his family had kept the Shabbat, the Shabbat had kept his family.  That’s a wonderful thought. The very first time in our lives where we welcomed the Sabbath with a special dinner on Friday night was in his home in Jerusalem. We will never forget it. It truly was a time of peace, well-being, and wholeness. Being there with his family has created some special traditions in our own family. The sun has set on Saturday night here. Which means the Sabbath is over. As I leave worship and preach in church tomorrow, the blessings of the Sabbath will give me passion for A new week and a new worship day. Shabbat shalom.

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Pastor Matt McKeown

Matt is the Senior Pastor at the United Brethren in Christ Church (UBIC) in Holly Hill Florida. It is his desire to see Jewish people recognize Yeshua as the Jewish Messiah and for Christians to recognize the Jewish foundation of their faith.

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