Sabbath as Resistance

Sojourners, a Christian publication focused on social justice, has published my latest article, Sabbath as Resistance. This article argues that Sabbath is an act of resistance against the systemic oppression and violence enabled by free markets and consumerism. Below is the editor’s note printed in the magazine, along with an excerpt from the article.

In this issue, Baptist minister J. Dana Trent uses the fourth commandment (“Remember the Sabbath day, and keep it holy.”) to reframe our quandary. Through this commandment to practice “ritual rest from our labor,” writes Trent, “we opt out of tyranny and opt into care for one another.” At its heart, Sabbath rest isn’t a pause from justice work; it’s a way of disrupting a culture of what Walter Brueggemann describes as “endless desire, endless productivity, and endless restlessness.”

Sabbath as resistance is nearly impossible to practice in isolation. We must opt out of mammon to create new systems of care for the marginalized in our communities. Like Gandhi’s satyagraha (“truth force”) movement, our positive duty is to create spaces that foster truth, love, nonviolence, fearlessness, tolerance, and the dissolution of the U.S. “caste” system. Read more…

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