Anonymous asked in Society & CultureReligion & Spirituality · 10 years ago

Did the Hebrew word Shabbath ("rest") come from the Hebrew word for Seven ("Sheva")?

If so, why do Christians insist on calling the first day of the week the Sabbath? Aren't they disrespecting the original language in which God revealed Himself?

Thanks for your reasonable tirades.


8 Answers

  • Anonymous
    10 years ago
    Favourite answer

    Under the old covenant of the law man had to work to earn the blessings of all week and rest on the seventh day. (they used to celebrate the sabbath on Saturday). But now under the new covenant of grace Jesus finished all the work for us on the cross. He came and did what we could never do. He paid for all our sins and imputed to us His righteousness. Now Jesus is our rest. We no longer get what we deserve, but what Jesus deserves. Now we rest first (sunday..first day of week) and we word out of that "rest" (we have in Jesus) By His Spirit we are actually empowered to do the work He has for us.

  • 10 years ago

    No, the word Sabbath (Shabbath - שבת) does not share a root with seven (sheva' - שבע), though by coincidence the first two letters are the same.

    Christians who actually have the slightest clue about their own religion should know that Sunday isn't the Sabbath, even in Christianity (to this day, the Spanish word for Saturday is Sábado, after all, which wouldn't make sense in the Catholic world if they thought Sunday was the Sabbath). My understanding (as a non-Christian) is that Sunday is "The Lord's Day" and has to do with the alleged resurrection, not the Sabbath. Christians simply ignore the Sabbath, as they do almost all the other commandments.

    Source(s): Speak Hebrew
  • Gary B
    Lv 7
    10 years ago

    There does seem to be some connection, but not enough to promote legalism. There is no mention of this relationship in any Jewish-English Concordance, like Strong's.

    [Actually, the number seven is held as the "Number of God" in Jewish mysticism. therefore, both Sabbath and seven MAY refer not to numerical values, but to holiness, with "Shabbath" being a day of holiness, and "sheva" being the number of holiness. Consider Jesus' direction, "“I tell you, [to forgive] not seven times, but seventy-seven times." ]

    The word "sabbath" is used to indicate a TIME PERIOD (the seventh day, or even the seventh year) that is to be held Holy to The Lord.

    But this term can be applied to ANY DAY at ANY TIME, without reference to "seven" of anything. For example, The Festival of Tabernacles and The Passover are ALSO called "sabbaths", although they do not necessarily occur on Saturday.

    In fact, in John 19:31, we learn of a "Special Sabbath", which was apparently a mid-week "holy day". [Some theologians believe that the "Special Sabbath" was The Passover, and was on WEDNESDAY that year -- thus supporting the idea the Christ was crucified on WEDNESDAY, not Friday.] this idea of a mid-week Sabbath indicates that a Sabbath DOES NOT have to be on Saturday!!!

    Continuing with the idea that both "Sheva" and "Shabbath" contain the idea of holiness, we can see that it is not really important what DAY you hold as the Sabbath, but it is much more important that you indeed DO HAVE one day as a Sabbath. And THIS would be more in line with Jesus' teaching of "fulfillment of the law" rather than strict, legalistic [and potentially too narrow] interpretation of The Law.

  • 10 years ago

    *pulls out trusty concordance with Hebrew dictionary* Let's take a look, shall we?

    *ahem* The word "sabbath" comes from the Hebrew root verb "shabath," which means "to cease, desist, rest."

    "Seven," on the other hand, is "sheba" or "shibah" in Hebrew, and is its own primary root.

    "Rest" in Hebrew ends in tav, while "seven" ends in ayin or he.

    We can conclude, therefore, that the Sabbath day of rest is not tied to a particular day of the week by its meaning. A sabbath is merely a rest, and can be taken any day of the week, so long as it is taken at least one day a week. The only reason God established a sabbath on a particular day of the week is because He was giving the law to a group of people who had been trained for generations to be workaholics, and wouldn't have known what a day off was if it walked up and punched them in the face.

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  • Shabbat and Sunday worship were different entities for early Christians. Generally speaking, they abandoned their versions of Shabbat (just because they used the same word doesn't mean they were observing it halakhically) as various rulers outlawed Jewish practices. That period of history is full of Roman emperors, governors, etc forbidding Jewish observances. Jews found ways to get by and wait it out until they could resume their practices publicly; Christians simply abandoned them.

    So the error is in not recognizing that Sunday worship was *never* Shabbat.

    Source(s): The linguistic history of two letter roots is complicated. Most Hebrew roots (same for other Semitic languages) are three letters, but a few that appear to be very old are just two letters. Some researchers theorize a proto-Semitic language based on two letter roots. Some people claim that parallels in other languages support an association between the roots for Shabbat and sheva; I don't know enough to evaluate those. The root-word structure of Hebrew makes poetic association not just easy, but very natural. So whatever their developmental history is, Shabbat and sheva have resonance with each other.
  • 10 years ago

    Sabbath is most likely derived from the word hebrew word for "seven"

    In persian it is called "hafta" and haft means seven in persian.

    In sankrit "sapta" (similar to sabbath) means seven

  • 10 years ago

    I always thought Sunday was the LAST day of the week! Oh, what the hell, it's all a load of old cobblers anyway.

  • Anonymous
    10 years ago

    If I say Hi in America it is a greeting

    If I say it in Japan (Hai) it is an agreement

    context, always context

    nine? er Nein?

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