I know the Lord doesn’t need to rest. The wonderful, yet, so often, neglected, doctrine of asiety tells us he is in need of nothing. This is a philosophically necessary attribute, meaning he must be “a se” (“without need”) in order to qualify to be God. But I think I can, with relative ease, back this up with Scripture. Not the least of which, from the Psalmist:

Psalm 50
9 I have no need of a bull from your stall
or of goats from your pens,
10 for every animal of the forest is mine,
and the cattle on a thousand hills.
11 I know every bird in the mountains,
and the insects in the fields are mine.
12 If I were hungry I would not tell you,
for the world is mine, and all that is in it.
13 Do I eat the flesh of bulls
or drink the blood of goats?

God is always perfectly satisfied and complete. He does not need us for anything. A humbling, yet comforting truth.

However, why do we rest? Is there some aspect within the Lord’s character, while not needing to, takes breaks and rests? I know he never sleeps as we do, but it would seem that if we were created in his image, and so many of our attributes are given to us in his gracious active sharing, is rest a shared attribute? Or is it just one that humans need?

After all, why would God have rested on the seventh day? Whether you take that literally or figuratively the question is still valid.

And, more interestingly, if this is true, does this place a mandate on us to have sufficient rest, sleep, or, even, leisure time, in order to be like him?

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C Michael Patton
C Michael Patton

C. Michael Patton is the primary contributor to the Parchment and Pen/Credo House Blog. He has been in ministry for nearly twenty years as a pastor, author, speaker, and blogger. Th.M. Dallas Theological Seminary (2001), president of Credo House Ministries and Credo Courses, author of Now that I'm a Christian (Crossway, 2014) Increase My Faith (Credo House, 2011), and The Theology Program (Reclaiming the Mind Ministries, 2001-2006), host of Theology Unplugged, and primary blogger here at Parchment and Pen. But, most importantly, husband to a beautiful wife and father to four awesome children. Michael is available for speaking engagements. He can be contacted at [email protected]

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