Dealing with Sabbath Work Problems

1. Review the Biblical Sabbath. It may not be necessary to read all of these texts. It is essential that the individual is convicted of the Sabbath.

Genesis 2:1-3

Thus the heavens and the earth, and all the host of them, were finished. And on the seventh day God ended His work which He had done, and He rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had done. Then God blessed the seventh day and sanctified it, because in it He rested from all His work which God had created and made.

Exodus 20:8-11

Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the LORD your God. In it you shall do no work: you, nor your son, nor your daughter, nor your male servant, nor your female servant, nor your cattle, nor your stranger who is within your gates. For in six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day. Therefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day and hallowed it.

Ezekiel 20:12

Moreover I also gave them My Sabbaths, to be a sign between them and Me, that they might know that I am the LORD who sanctifies them.

Luke 4:16

So He came to Nazareth, where He had been brought up. And as His custom was, He went into the synagogue on the Sabbath day, and stood up to read.

Acts 13:42-44

So when the Jews went out of the synagogue, the Gentiles begged that these words might be preached to them the next Sabbath. Now when the congregation had broken up, many of the Jews and devout proselytes followed Paul and Barnabas, who, speaking to them, persuaded them to continue in the grace of God. On the next Sabbath almost the whole city came together to hear the word of God.

Isaiah 66:22,23

or as the new heavens and the new earth which I will make shall remain before Me,” says the LORD, “So shall your descendants and your name remain. And it shall come to pass that from one New Moon to another, and from one Sabbath to another, all flesh shall come to worship before Me,” says the LORD.

2. Explain that God is interested in the individual’s physical needs and promises to supply them.

Matthew 6:33

But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.

Philippians 4:19

And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus.

Psalm 37:23-27

The steps of a good man are ordered by the LORD, and He delights in his way. Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down; for the LORD upholds him with His hand. I have been young, and now am old; yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his descendants begging bread. He is ever merciful, and lends; and his descendants are blessed. Depart from evil, and do good; and dwell forevermore.

3. There are two significant issues involved in this decision:

  1. Who is my real master? Whose voice shall I listen to?

    Romans 6:16

    Do you not know that to whom you present yourselves slaves to obey, you are that one’s slaves whom you obey, whether of sin leading to death, or of obedience leading to righteousness?

    Acts 5:29

    But Peter and the other apostles answered and said: “We ought to obey God rather than men.
  2. Do I have sufficient confidence in God to believe His word and do what He says?

    Mark 11:23,24

    For assuredly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, ‘Be removed and be cast into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that those things he says will be done, he will have whatever he says. Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them.

4. When individuals speak to their employers, encourage them to explain that the reason why they want Saturday off is because of religious reasons.

They have recently accepted the seventh-day Sabbath and desire to worship God upon that day. They are convicted, based upon God’s word, that Saturday is the Sabbath of the commandments and they cannot violate their conscience. They do not want to lose their job. They appreciate their employer, but desire to be off from sundown Friday night to sundown Saturday night. They should explain that they are willing to work any other day of the week, including Sunday, or extra time each day.

5. Present the employer with a written request from the Adventist Church pastor explaining the Bible position.

This enables the employer to recognize that the individual is part of a world-wide church with millions of Sabbath-keeping members who are diligent employees.

6. Bathe the entire process in prayers.

Find out the time when the individuals will approach their employer and earnestly pray for God to intercede.

7. Assure the individuals that if they lose their job, God will honor them for their decision by providing for their needs.

Isaiah 56:2

Blessed is the man who does this, and the son of man who lays hold on it; who keeps from defiling the Sabbath, and keeps his hand from doing any evil.

Isaiah 58:13,14

If you turn away your foot from the Sabbath, from doing your pleasure on My holy day, and call the Sabbath a delight, the holy day of the LORD honorable, and shall honor Him, not doing your own ways, nor finding your own pleasure, nor speaking your own words, then you shall delight yourself in the LORD; and I will cause you to ride on the high hills of the earth, and feed you with the heritage of Jacob your father. The mouth of the LORD has spoken.