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is it disrespectful to God if you sleep on the Sabbath seeing that you're supoose to be spending time with God?

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A nap on Sabbath afternoon has become something I do often so I am interested in this question.  I cannot find anything that says no. I do find things that should be done, but nothing about sleeping.  Hope someone with knowledge finds this question interesting. 

I had nothing else to do so I fell asleep to pass time. then I woke up feeling really bad about that. It felt wrong so I guess it was wrong

That could be.  I am often tired after intense study and that may be the need for a nap as a way of digesting what was learned.  Maybe you needed to study and then take a walk or relax in some way. 

I don't think anything is wrong with resting on Sabbath as long as we spend time with God that day as well.

Sabbath starts at sunset therefore it would be impossible not to sleep on the Sabbath

Sabbath Time Too Precious to Sleep Away.--None should permit themselves, through the week, to become so absorbed in their temporal interests, and so exhausted by their efforts for worldly gain, that on the Sabbath they have no strength or energy to give to the service of God. We are robbing the Lord when we unfit ourselves to worship Him upon His holy day. And we are robbing ourselves as well; for we need the warmth and glow of association, as well as the strength to be gained from the wisdom and experience of other Christians.  {CG 530.1} 

     Let not the precious hours of the Sabbath be wasted in bed. On Sabbath morning the family should be astir early. If they rise late, there is confusion and bustle in preparing for breakfast and Sabbath school. There is hurrying, jostling, and impatience. Thus unholy feelings come into the home. The Sabbath, thus desecrated, becomes a weariness, and its coming is dreaded rather than loved.  {CG 530.2} 


None should feel at liberty to spend sanctified time in an unprofitable manner. It is displeasing to God for Sabbathkeepers to sleep during much of the Sabbath. They dishonor their Creator in so doing, and, by their example, say that the six days are too precious for them to spend in resting. They must make money, although it be by robbing themselves of needed sleep, which they make up by sleeping away holy time. They then excuse themselves by saying: "The Sabbath was given for a day of rest. I will not deprive myself of rest to attend meeting, for I need rest." Such make a wrong use of the sanctified day. They should, upon that day especially, interest their families in its observance and assemble at the house of prayer with the few or with the many, as the case may be. They should devote their time and energies to spiritual exercises, that the divine influence resting upon the Sabbath may attend them through the week. Of all the days in the week, none are so favorable for devotional thoughts and feelings as the Sabbath. 488 {CCh 270.4}

I know I need to improve in this area, and others.  I’ve read this before yet I still often get my Sabbath lay activity in.  But the times when I stayed up all the day and visited or went in nature were definitely more of a blessing than when I slept in the afternoon.

We should be careful not to take these kind of quotes in their most extreme light.  If you read what she is talking about here she is addressing the issue of sleeping through much of the day, or skipping church in order to sleep in.  She's not saying that you should never close your eyes to take a nap for part of the Sabbath;

"It is displeasing to God for Sabbathkeepers to sleep during much of the Sabbath"

"I will not deprive myself of rest to attend meeting, for I need rest."

We have many forced requirements during the week which we have no way to turn away from- besides that the human constitution is very weak so that it is difficult to avoid taking a nap occasionally on Sabbath. 

It also depends on your age and condition of health - babies and children (including young adults), as well as elderly and those who have various health problems, need many hours of sleep every day and they will not be able to stay awake during the entire day - it would be nearly abusive to demand or expect that they should never take a nap on Sabbath.

(And of course, as mentioned - for sanity and health we definitely must get a good night's sleep during the dark part of the Sabbath).

Remember what Jesus said "the Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath."  God understands human weakness and He did not intend for us to feel that the requirements for keeping this day holy should be so stiff and harsh that you end up feeling guilty every week just for even trying to keep it.

I'm not saying that we should make a regular habit of sleeping on Sabbath - that's not my point.  It's best to seek to use the hours in a way that would bring the most blessing, but if you are very tired occasionally and end up falling asleep for a little while that's nothing to feel guilty about.  It's part of the blessing of having a rest day.

God bless.

Well said, I am sure anyone who thinks rationally would agree with you on this point. 

I look forward to one, to recharge my energy for doing things the next day.  When you are up by 0500 at work by 0600 and may leave at 1800 depending on the work load, and spend a minimum of 10 hours a day 5 days a week, a Sabbath nap is a wonderful thing.

I first ran into this habit as a Missionary Teacher in an SDA boarding school, I do not sleep on Sabbath, I prefer finding people who want to talk about Jesus.... sadly such is a rare thing...

Many I gather use the sleep thing to fill in time, after all, Sabbath means to cease, cease work, cease witnessing and cease spending time with God even...  where if you the ten commandments changed by Jesus

we are required to be busy doing on Sabbath:

De 5:15 And remember that thou wast a servant in the land of Egypt, and that the LORD thy God brought thee out thence through a mighty hand and by a stretched out arm: therefore the LORD thy God commanded thee to keep "asah"  do on the sabbath day.

Asah means to be doing.... and Sabbath is a fruit time, family time to share fruit with one another....


There is what I think of as a "balancing thought" in 3Selected Messages p.264.

It briefly describes what Ellen White and others did during a Sabbath,

[Battle Creek] Sabbath, May 17, 1873— We rode out a few miles in the oak grove. Rested about an hour. We slept some. We had a season of prayer before returning home. In the afternoon we went to the meeting.—Manuscript 7, 1873.

So Janny, I would say that it is not necessarily wrong to sleep on the Sabbath.

(There are times when it would be wrong, but no, it is not necessarily wrong.)


thanks for your replies everyone


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