Why the Sabbath is Essential2 min read

Have you ever heard the term “circaseptan rhythm?” It is used in chronobiology to refer to the natural 7-day rhythms found in the human body. Scientists have observed, for example, that a patient with pneumonia goes through a critical 7-day period, at the end of which the disease may peak or go away. The common cold runs on a 7-day cycle, and so do several other things that go on in our bodies (blood pressure, body temperature, hormone level, etc.). But it is not only human bodies that have circaseptan rhythms: mice, honeybees, guinea pigs, algae and bacteria, among others, also show this pattern.

So what does all this have to do with the Sabbath? The word Sabbath is from the Hebrew word SHABÀT, meaning ‘cessation,’ or ‘time of rest.’ “On the seventh day God finished his work that he had done, and he rested on the seventh day from all his work that he had done” (Genesis 2:2 ESV). God set the example by resting after His creative work, and He commanded that we do the same. For our own good.

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Imagine this: if you tried to follow a 30-hour day, you would quickly fall out of step with everyone around you, and would start showing signs of tiredness and lack of productivity. Our bodies follow a 24-hour circadian rhythm of waking and sleeping that was ordered by God. Similarly, our bodies are programmed by our Creator to follow a 7-day rhythm of work and rest. If we don’t respect that, we will eventually break. Just like that.

But why, then, don’t we take a weekly day of rest to allow God to restore us? Perhaps we simply don’t know how to go about it anymore. Perhaps we tell lies to ourselves in order to keep going at our frenzied pace. Perhaps we need help.

So you know the Sabbath is good for you, but you need help figuring out HOW to make it happen. And this is why the Michigan District, LCMS hosted the webinar, “Finding Rest in a Restless World,” on September 12, 2014. It was aimed at professional church workers, but everyone can benefit from it. In the webinar, Rev. Dr. Rob Kasper shared five reasons why the Sabbath is essential; he exposed the lies people tell themselves, and shared practical tools you can use to reinstate the Sabbath rest in your life. The webinar is archived at

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About the Author

Elisa is a staff writer, copy editor, and photographer for the Michigan District, LCMS.

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Greg - February 18, 2022

I’m a Sabbath rester. It does give us refreshment. Sabbath resters usually live longer. By using only six days a week will in a lifetime give not take from us. It can average another 10 years to our life. Its a lifestyle not a burden in which its legalism, but because it gives back to us with less stress it also allows rest from the noise of the world. I see that this was written 8 years ago, but today in the Covid age with so much fear and anxiety The Sabbath gives us hope for this future. So I agree and can’t see a week without disconnecting from the noise. It allows for a weary traveler a sojourner, to look up and find rest and to strengthen their walk with The Creator of Heaven and Earth and the Sea and all that is in them.