The Sabbath Feeling

Jewish people all over the world have just completed weeks of special holy days.  The last one is called Simchat Torah, which means “The Joy of the Torah.” They dance with the handwritten scroll of the first five books of the Bible.  They embrace the scroll and twirl in circles with it, thanking God for the year of reading the Torah which has just passed and happy to be blessed with a new year of reading it again, every Sabbath.

In The Bible Through the Seasons we follow their plan for these readings on Saturdays. We’re back to the first book of the Bible.  The name “Genesis” and Bereshith (the Hebrew name of the book) means “In the beginning.”

You’ll see a pattern as the parts of creation are stitched together with the words, “And God saw that it was good,” leading up to the last work on the sixth day of creating the first human beings.

It’s a beautiful poem that tells how God changed chaos and confusion into the creation of an ordered, wonderful world of peace. Then there’s the final day, the Sabbath, when God rested.

We are urged to do the same.  Take some time this and very Saturday to get in touch with a Sabbath feeling on Saturday, the last day of the week.  The world doesn’t honor it, though fervent Jews really get into the spiritual feeling of the Sabbath—a day to live very aware that God is totally in charge.  But you can have a Sabbath-feeling being off from school and playing; play is a great part of the Sabbath.  Having fun with God’s people—that’s what God wants us to do!

Genesis  1:1—2:3

The Saturday passages follow the reading list that Jewish people use in their synagogue worship throughout the world. They are taken from
“The Torah,” the first five books of the Bible from Genesis to Deuteronomy that are read each year beginning with autumn.

These Firestarters are from a new edition of The Bible Through the Seasons being developed for families with children. For the Firestarters in the original edition, I recommend the ebook.  You will have the entire program of well over a thousand of these introductions with you on your phone or table! Check the menu options at the site for more information.