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The Sabbath of Sabbaths

By Fr. Myles Hixson

Harrowing of Hell -- Fra Angelico

We read in Genesis 2:3 that after God finished fashioning heaven and earth, he rested. His work of creation was complete and so he ceased, thus setting a pattern that would be solidified in Israel's worship rhythm. The Sabbath day, Saturday, was a weekly reminder of God's power, glory, and position as sovereign creator over all. Israel was called to cease from her servile work each week just as God had ceased from his.  These Old Testament Sabbaths, as glorious as they were, were merely foreshadows of an even greater Sabbath: today. For today is the Sabbath of Sabbaths. After having finished his work of new creation and redemption, God in the Flesh, Jesus Christ, rests from his work in the garden tomb. The work of God in creation - to create for himself a holy humanity - is now complete. God rests as he lays dead in his tomb.  The work of redemption gives us the fullness of Sabbath rest. Jesus said, "Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest" (Matt. 11:28). In Christ our souls find rest with God from all our spiritual labors. He has done all the work for us through his cross, passion, and death.  Today, as we meditate upon the second Adam slain by the Tree of Death, may God grant us true spiritual rest through his Son. Our redemption has been paid in full. Our sins have been canceled. Our death has been overcome. The struggle - the work - is over.  Fr. Myles Hixson is Rector of Holy Cross Anglican Church in Knoxville, TN. If you want to join him today, Evening Prayer will be held at 4pm. The ancient night office of prayer called Compline will be live streamed at 9 PM on their Facebook page as well. You can download the liturgy for Compline here.


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