Why is Shabbat observed, Friday night through Saturday day, according to the time zone that one is in rather than the time zone that the mitzvah of Shabbat was given in (the time zone of Mt. Sinai)?

  • 1
    Hi there namesake! This is an interesting question but it's not quite clear what you mean. Where is "there"? When does G-d say this? If you edit your question to include these elements you'll get better answers :) Sep 29, 2022 at 17:02
  • @יהושעק why do we not start Shabbat in the time zone that mount saini (I think that is where g-d told us about this mitzva)
    – Joshua
    Sep 29, 2022 at 17:15
  • Why don't the jews in diaspora keep the Shabbat according to the time zone of the land of Israel?
    – Kapandaria
    Sep 29, 2022 at 17:16
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    If you lived 3000 years ago, how could you know when is the sunset of a far location?
    – Kapandaria
    Sep 29, 2022 at 17:18
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    I don't think people quite understood in the Late Iron Age that there are different time zones. The Torah was issued as a practicable legislation in its own time. Sep 29, 2022 at 17:43

1 Answer 1


The commandment is given as applying to the seventh of the seven days. Days are defined by sunrise and sunset. Your question seems to assume G-d started a metaphorical clock and said in so many hours it will be Sabbath worldwide. Instead, G-d said the seventh day shall be holy. Wherever you are, after sunset of the sixth day until sunset of the seventh day, it is the Sabbath.

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