This holiday will be observed on: June 15, 2019

Shabbat

Shabbat is a time to rest from the incessant demands of modern life. The Sabbath Day satisfies, but it also perplexes: the first Sabbath was taken by God Himself, but why would an all-powerful God need rest? Explore the mysteries of Shabbat below.

Resources

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guide

A self-study guide for: Shabbat Guide Part 1

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guide

A self-study guide for: Shabbat Guide Part 2

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guide

A self-study guide for: Shabbat Guide Part 3

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guide

Our familiarity with the Kiddush blessing can stop us from digging deeper into the real meaning of the words we're saying. We dive into a detailed explanation of this common Shabbat blessing through a close inspection of the text in Hebrew and English.

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guide

Who is Eshet Chayil, the woman portrayed in Proverbs 31? Is it an outdated or empowering notion of feminine power? Whether you're familiar or new to these verses, there are many lessons behind the words that many read aloud on Shabbat.

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guide

Some are more familiar with Shabbat rituals, while others may only just be starting to observe the Sabbath. But, whether you've been observant for years or only beginning, the Sabbath holds many secrets for everyone. We provide a complete 101 guide to explain what we do on Shabbat and what is the deeper meaning behind Jewish Sabbath day rituals.

About Shabbat

Stop, reflect and rest – the core values of Shabbat are even more crucial in today’s chaotic world. We rest on the seventh day to honor God’s rest after He created the Universe. Thousands of years later we still observe the Sabbath by refraining from work, alongside special meals and prayers with friends and family.

The Torah tells us that God created the world in six days. Light and darkness, sky and sea, plant life, marine life and terrestrial life – they were all completed by the end of the sixth day of creation. On the seventh day, after so much creating, God then rested – and enjoyed it so much, that He blessed the day and made it holy for eternity. In recognition of God’s rest, we, too, celebrate the seventh day as Shabbat through rest. For thousands of years, the Jewish people have been observing the Sabbath, and remembering and recreating, in our own way, God’s day of rest.

Observing the Sabbath was written into stone as one of the Ten Commandments. And, even before the Torah was even given at Mount Sinai, the Israelites were told not to collect manna on Shabbat. In Jewish law, the Sabbath is observed by refraining from work, sanctifying the day with the recitation of Kiddush, enjoying festive meals and saying special prayers. There are many other laws, practices and customs that are unique to the day as well.

But there are many mysteries to Shabbat. For instance: Why would God need to rest? Why should the fact that God rested still matter to us today? And what do all the practices and customs of Shabbat mean? What is the real purpose of this day? The videos and guides on this page address these big quesitons to help you unravel the true meaning of Shabbat.