The Sabbath as Rest and Hope for the People of God

By Guy Prentiss Waters, Series edited by Dane Ortlund, Miles V. Van Pelt

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A Short Study of the Sabbath from Creation to Consummation

When it comes to the Sabbath, Christians have different ideas on what it means and how to observe it. For many people, it is a day to go to church and have fellowship with other believers. What they often miss, though, is that the Sabbath is intricately tied to rest and worship—both of which ultimately point to the Lord as our creator and redeemer.

In this addition to the Short Studies in Biblical Theology series, Guy Prentiss Waters offers an introductory study of the Sabbath from the creation of the world to the consummation of all things when Jesus returns. He shows how the Sabbath is observed through the major themes and genres of the Bible—creation, law, prophets, Jesus, and the apostles—and how that applies to our lives today. Waters teaches us about the Sabbath’s full restoration in the new heavens and the new earth and its continual reminder of the covenant that God has made with his people. 

  • Written for New Believers and Seasoned Saints Alike: Perfect for laypersons, pastors, college and seminary students, and academics 
  • Practical: Examines how the Sabbath is relevant to the church now as well as how it will be restored in the new heavens and the new earth 
  • Short Studies in Biblical Theology: Part of a series designed to give readers accessible volumes on God’s word

Read Chapter 1


Guy Prentiss Waters

Guy Prentiss Waters (PhD, Duke University) is James M. Baird Jr. Professor of New Testament and academic dean at Reformed Theological Seminary, Jackson. He is the author or editor of fifteen books and numerous chapters, articles, and reviews. He is a teaching elder in the Presbyterian Church in America (PCA).

Product Details

Category: Theology
Christian Living
Format: Paperback
Page Count: 160
Size: 5.25 in x 8.0 in
Weight: 6.28 ounces
ISBN-10: 1-4335-7354-7
ISBN-13: 978-1-4335-7354-5
ISBN-UPC: 9781433573545
Case Quantity: 76
Published: October 25, 2022

Table of Contents

Series Preface

Chapter 1: Creation
Chapter 2: Law
Chapter 3: Prophets
Chapter 4: Christ
Chapter 5: New Creation
Chapter 6: Practice

General Index
Scripture Index 


“‘Call the Sabbath a delight,’ bids the Lord (Isa. 58:13), and, in this book, Guy Waters helps us to do just that. Tracing the theological framework and biblical commands for keeping the Sabbath day holy, Waters leads God’s people to recognize this often-misunderstood day as essential for our growth in grace. Thanks to Waters’s accessible writing and thorough exegesis, this book leaves readers with a clear sense of what the Lord commands and a fresh conviction that ‘his commandments are not burdensome’ (1 John 5:3). In a day when Christians talk frequently about the practice of ‘Sabbath,’ Waters invites us to see that the biblical Sabbath is much more than a day to enjoy bodily rest—it’s a day to enjoy God himself.”
Megan Hill, pastor’s wife; author, A Place to Belong; Managing Editor, The Gospel Coalition

“How and whether we are to observe the Sabbath commandment today has proven to be a tricky question. Waters helps us navigate this complexity with nuanced simplicity. He explains the role of Sabbath in creation and redemption, covering key texts from the Old and New Testaments. He covers tricky issues, like the way Jesus related to the Sabbath and why the Sabbath is now celebrated on Sunday. Waters also shows the ongoing relevance of the Sabbath and provides practical suggestions for observing the Sabbath today. This short book is long on helpful insights: it will show you why the Sabbath is good news, how it relates to Jesus himself, and why it is important that we continue to observe it today.”
Brandon D. Crowe, Professor of New Testament, Westminster Theological Seminary

“What a timely and necessary book, calling us out of our fast-paced and productivity-driven lives to rightly regard and observe the Sabbath. Waters expertly moves us from Genesis to Revelation, tracing the Sabbath through creation, redemption, and consummation. Far from an outdated practice, the Sabbath day is a necessary reset that gives us perspective and promotes fruitfulness during our six days of labor. Waters reminds us that the Sabbath rest is an important means of imitating God and a weekly invitation to enjoy him. I found myself longing for the Sabbath, ready to joyfully submit to this command given at the beginning of time.”
Colleen D. Searcy, Bible teacher; speaker; creator, Meet Me in the Bible resources