Celebrating A Universal Sabbath
The Seventy Nations and the Nascent Sanhedrin of Israel are calling on All Nations to light two Sabbath candles to honor the “Universal Shabbat” as mandated in the Ten Commandments. This sabbath is a Sabbath or “Shabbat” of Creation marking the 7th day of rest the entire world is called to observe and keep “holy” not the Creator. Unlike the Jewish people who are mandated in a different way according to the law of Moses and specified in the Torah, all Mankind is called to honor this Day of Rest from Creation as God gave this Day of Rest to serve practical purposes that enhance our lives:
A true source of blessing in life is found in honoring the Shabbat. This is true for anyone, regardless of race or religion, that if they are connected to Shabbat, they will be blessed in business, family, health, and every other aspect of their lives. Everyone should honor the Shabbat with joy and pleasure. Once a week, Shabbat offers the opportunity to invest in feeling the pleasure of gathering together, enjoying every bite of family dinner, and enjoying singing together. Once a week, the Shabbat offers the opportunity to spend quality time with our families, to listen to each other, to share our experiences, to express our love, and make each other happy.
Rabbi Schwartz, Advising Rabbi to The Seventy Nations and also head of the worldwide Noahide Movement ( see below for more information) and Rabbi Meir Halevi, Judge on the Sanhedrin Court and CoFounder of the Seventy Nations, explained that these two different versions of the Sabbath commandment generate two different types of Sabbaths; one for Jews and one for the nations.
Rabbi Schwartz explained that this dual Shabbat is based on a simple reading of the Bible in conjunction with a close reading of the Ten Commandments. He first cited the Talmud (Shabbat 118b), which states, “Were Israel to keep two Sabbaths as commanded, they would be immediately redeemed.” He explained that the simple reading implies two Sabbaths in a row establishing a level of regular observance. The rabbi also explained that an alternative reading might be two different Sabbaths: one of ‘remembering the Sabbath’, what the rabbi calls a ‘universal Sabbath’, and another of ‘observing the Sabbath’, what the rabbi calls a Sabbath for the Jews.
He explained that these are two different aspects of the Sabbath described in the Ten Commandments. The Ten Commandments are listed twice in the Bible, but there is a subtle difference between how the Sabbath is related to in each of these separate listings.
Remember the Shabbat day and keep it holy. Exodus 20:8
Observe the Shabbat day and keep it holy, as Hashem your God has commanded you. Deuteronomy 5:12
“The first set of tablets were written by God, and the commandment to remember the Sabbath was a universal commandment,” Rabbi Schwartz explained. “That is to ‘remember’ the Sabbath. Since it was universal, it was followed by a description of creation.”
“For in six days Hashem made heaven and earth and sea, and all that is in them, and He rested on the seventh day; therefore Hashem blessed the Shabbat day and hallowed it. Exodus 20:11
“The commandment in Deuteronomy on the tablets written by Moses was a message specifically for the Jews to ‘observe’ the Sabbath,” Rabbi Schwartz said, noting that it was followed by a description of God taking the Jews out of Egypt.
“Remember that you were a slave in the land of Egypt and Hashem, your God freed you from there with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm; therefore, Hashem, your God, has commanded you to observe the Shabbat day. Deuteronomy 5
While the Jewish people are required to both ‘remember’ and ‘observe’, performing the positive mitzvah of remembering the Sabbath and reciting the Sabbath blessing over a glass of wine, non-Jews while light two candles to praise God and bring in the Sabbath. This is typically performed by women. The rabbi ruled that if a non-Jew does so for the Sabbath at the proper time and day, a blessing including the name of God may be recited.
To honor Shabbat, it is appropriate to light two candles to emphasize the two types of Shabbat: one for the Jewish people with particular requirements as the Jewish people and the other as a universal Sabbath that requires all mankind to know that in six days, God made the heavens and the earth. At the time of lighting, Biblical verses describing the creation of the world should be recited :
“The heaven and the earth were finished, and all their array. On the seventh day, Hashem finished the work that He had been doing, and He ceased on the seventh day from all the work that He had done. And Hashem blessed the seventh day and declared it holy because on it Hashem ceased from all the work of creation that He had done” Gen 2:1-3
On Shabbat night, there should also be a festive family meal, and it is fitting that within the meal, there should be bread, fish, meat, and wine, which are a reminder of the future Shabbat, then there will be a feast for the righteous where there will be wine and roasted meat. The bread symbolizes manna, fish – symbolizes the great fish of the prophet Jonah, meat symbolizes roasted meat from the Temple, as does wine. All of these are symbols of the future spiritual world..It is also traditional to bless the Shabbat over a glass in this manner: “Blessed you GOD, King of the Universe, Creator of this vine”. And everyone answers: Amen. At the end of the family dinner, all should give thanks in the traditional way:
“Blessed are you, God, King of the Universe and blessed your Kingdom, for the feeding the whole world with his goodness in grace and mercy and compassion. He gives food to every creature forever and ever, as it is written: “Gives bread to all flesh because of His mercy, thank God forever as he has always been merciful” Blessed are you, God, King of the Universe, for feeding everyone and everything. We remember that in six days, you created the heavens and the earth and on the seventh day, you rested. “
The commandment to ‘Remember the Sabbath’ was given at Mount Sinai as one of the Ten Commandments and said to all the nations of the world. This commandment is to remember that God created the world in six days, and Shabbat is based on the first Sabbath, just as all the laws of nature were created at that time and are still in effect, sustaining the world. The nation of Israel was commanded to keep the Sabbath holy, to keep all the details of Shabbat symbolizing our faith in God. This is especially relevant today as one of the names of God is ‘Shalom’ (peace) and Shabbat returns peace to the world. This is symbolized in the traditional sabbath greeting in which people bless each other with ‘Shabbat Shalom’.”
The Seventy Nations will be teaching these protocols and more at the forthcoming Jerusalem Unity Center being built in Jerusalem very soon. We invite all people from all nations to come and join us to learn these protocols and more in preparation for the third temple and house of prayer for all nations. See you soon, this year in Jerusalem!