The Seventh Day Sabbath, Did Christ Do Away With the Sabbath?
Part Two

The following is an answer to the reasoning of an ex-Adventist writer who no longer believes the Seventh-day Sabbath is part of the Christian's life. His emphases is to call the Seventh-day Sabbath a shadow which has been fulfilled in Christ and we now rest everyday with Christ. It is amazing how so many attack the physical oasis of God's Holy day of rest and commitment to Him. While we are to walk and talk and abide with Christ all week long, this in no means does away with the Seventh-day Sabbath. It seems all avenues to the Sabbath DAY are being blocked by the enemy who, working through various agencies, will seek to draw all worship to himself. First the enemy of souls must break down the esteem for the day God has blessed, sanctified and told us to remember, before he can bring the world to worship upon his day of the sun. This we have seen in several articles, coming from several different approaches, yet all focused upon denouncing God's 7th Day Sabbath, which God blessed and sanctified and asked us to remember.

Did Christ command people to carry burdens on the Sabbath to show it's demise?
Colossians Again
Does Romans 14 Do Away With the Sabbath?

Following is the exposure of this ex-Adventist's attack upon the Sabbath DAY. The words of the challenger are in black. My comments are in blue.

Did Christ Command People to Carry Burdens on the Sabbath to Show it's Demise ?

Jer. 17:21, 22 -- This is what the Lord says: Be careful not to carry a load on the Sabbath day or bring it through the gates of Jerusalem. Do not bring a load out of your houses or do any work on the Sabbath day.

Before we go any further we must determine what is meant by this text. In the verses preceding it, we see that Jeremiah is told to go and stand in the gates of the city and warn those who a transporting loads of goods through the gates, not to do so on the Sabbath.

In Nehemiah we see the same concern:
(Nehemiah 13:15-19) "Some were working their wine presses on the Sabbath, and bringing in sheaves, and loaded donkeys with wine, grapes, figs, and all manner of burdens, which they brought into Jerusalem on the Sabbath day....Men of Tyre also brought fish, and all manner of goods and sold on the Sabbath to the children of Israel...So Nehemiah commanded that the gates of the city should be shut all day Sabbath THAT THERE SHOULD NO BURDEN be brought in on the Sabbath day.

This is a command not to do business or engage in any work involving trade and commerce, upon the Sabbath. Nehemiah shows the practical application of this when he shut the gates that no burden be brought -- he stopped the trading caravans with their loads from doing business on Sabbath.

Now see the misapplication the challenger to the Sabbath makes:

In the face of these commands to carry no burden on the Sabbath, the actions of Jesus in healing the invalid of 38 years is remarkable (John 5:1-18). His was a chronic complaint of long duration and no emergency. Jesus could have said to him "Rise" and he would have been healed. But to make a point he also said, "take up thy bed and walk." He was asking this man to deliberately break the law.

Jesus preformed many restorative healings on the Sabbath. For the Sabbath is a day of re-creation and restoration of mind and spirit.

Also Jesus did not ask the man to do business upon the Sabbath, just take his mat home.

Jesus was doing the exact opposite to what the writer claims in the next sentence:

Jesus was not demonstrating a correct way to keep the law, but to show that the law was in the process of coming to an end and that He had the authority to bring this about.

Jesus WAS showing how the Sabbath is to be kept. The Jews had made so many silly rules for the Sabbath, that the Sabbath itself was a burden. Picking up his mat and carrying it home was not breaking the Sabbath. Sending in caravans and doing business and carrying loads to market, etc. was.

Next the writer makes the same false accusation of Christ which the Jews made. That Christ broke His own commandments which He spoke and wrote with His own finger.

John 5:18 -- For this reason the Jews tried all the harder to kill him; Not only was he breaking the Sabbath, but he was even calling God his own father.
> This was a charge that he never denied.

Jesus said He was Lord of the Sabbath and that the Sabbath was created for mankind, not mankind to serve the Sabbath. Jesus was clearly showing how the Sabbath should be kept, He was neither breaking it nor doing away with it.

It is no violation of the Sabbath to perform works of necessity, as ministering to the sick or aged, and relieving distress. Such works are in perfect harmony with the Sabbath law. Our great Example was ever active upon the Sabbath, when the necessities of the sick and suffering came before him. The Pharisees, because of this, accused him of Sabbath-breaking, as do many supposed Christians today who are in opposition to the law of God. But we say, Let God be true, and every man a liar who dares make this charge against the Saviour.

Jesus answered the accusation of the Jews with this: "If you had known what this means, I will have mercy and not sacrifice, you would not have condemned the guiltless.For the Son of man is Lord even of the Sabbath day. " (Matt. 12:7-8) He declared " I have kept my Father's commandments, and abide in his love. (John 10:15). When he was accused of Sabbath-breaking in the matter of healing the withered hand, he turned upon his accusers with the question, "Is it lawful to do good on the Sabbath days, or to do evil? to save life, or to kill?" In summing up his answer to the questioning of the Pharisees he said, "Wherefore it is lawful to do well on the Sabbath days." Here Christ justified his work as in perfect harmony with the Sabbath law.

Ministers who profess to be ambassadors of Christ, yet assert that he did not regard the Sabbath day, and thus endeavor to justify themselves in disregarding it, make the same accusation against Christ as did the Pharisees. They certainly select poor company in those caviling Jews who persecuted the Redeemer.

Visiting Colossians 2 Again.

For more complete answers to the Colossian's Question, click here.
Now let's see how this challenger uses Colossians:

Col. 2:13-17 -- When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your sinful nature, God made you alive with Christ.
He forgave us all our sins, having canceled the written code [Sinaitic Covenant] with its regulations, that was against us and that stood opposed to us; he took it away, nailing it to the cross... This should settle the question forever. When it comes to abolishing one's cherished beliefs, even the Word of God at times does not seem to be sufficient -- to our everlasting shame.

Do you notice that the writer inserted the words (Sinaitic covenant)?

Having inserted his words, he has now made this passage to say that Christ forgave our sins by nailing the commandments to the cross. In other words, the way for forgiveness, according to this interpretation is to get rid of that which defined sin. And then he will tell us the following verse means no one is to think "God" will judge us if now we break those laws and commandments.

Now I ask — can anyone in honesty say the law was crucified in order to forgive us our sins? Did the law take upon itself our sins and die on the cross? Of course not! Jesus took upon HIMSELF OUR SINS, He it was that bore the record of all our guilt and shame and disobedience, it was He Who was nailed to cross, taking with him that record of condemnation which the law exposed. The law demands the death of the transgressor. The record clearly reveals that we are transgressors. Christ took upon HIMSELF our record of sins and with His blood the sins of the repentant sinner are covered so they will not speak against us. The law was not nailed to the cross, but it's demand for the death sentence of the sinner was carried by Christ.

To say Paul is here saying the commandments are nailed to the cross and abolished, would make him contradict himself for he says the law is NOT VOID (Romans 3:31) and we are NOT to continue in sin (breaking the commandments (Romans 6:1, 7:7)

Further more, the setting of the "judge not" is clearly LET NO MAN JUDGE YOU, it does NOT say God will not bring everyone into judgement. For Paul tells us we must all appear before the judgement throne of Christ to give account of ourselves to HIM. (Romans 14:10-12)

Colossians also reads that ‘THIS IS A SHADOW OF THINGS TO COME, OR THINGS COMING. It does not say they were a shadow of things that have come. The whole chapter's setting is in dealing with man made commandments. "Traditions of men" "Rudiments of the world" "Don't be subject to the rules of men after the commandments and doctrines of men."

Far from abolishing God's Sabbath which He sanctified and made Holy, and commanded us to remember, it is speaking of a false Sabbath, which man will command, a false system of fasting and penance which will come in the future and religious leaders will judge people according to the false sabbath and try to rob them of their reward.

For Jesus said, "In vain they worship me teaching for doctrines the commandments of men, setting aside the Commandments of God so they can observe their traditions." (Matt. 15:3,6,9)

Does Romans 14 do Away With the Sabbath?

Notice again:
Rom. 14:5 -- One man considers one day more sacred than another; another man considers every day alike. Each one should be fully convinced in his own mind.

The assumption the challenger of God's holy day must make, is that Paul is here speaking of the 7th Day Sabbath. To this end he has adopted a translation which most strongly supports his assumption. The Greek reads:
One man indeed judges a day above a day, another judges every day."
Or, as the RSV translates it "One man esteems one day above another day, while another esteems all days alike."
Now let's get the context:
Romans 14.3-6
Let not him that eats despise him that doesn't eat; and let not him which doesn't eat, judge him that eats: for God has received him.
Who are you that judge another man's servant? to his own master he stands or falls. Yes, he shall be held up: for God is able to make him stand.
One man esteems one day above another: another esteems every day. Let every man be fully persuaded in his own mind.
He that regards the day, regards it unto the Lord; and he that regards not the day, to the Lord he does not regard it. He that eats, eats to the Lord, for he gives God thanks; and he that doesn't eat, to the Lord he doesn't, and gives God thanks.

Yet do we see any reference at all to the Sabbath day, or even to God's ten commandments in this entire passage? No we do not!

The issue here is over eating. We find the early Christians often concerned over whether they should eat the food from the market place which has been sacrificed to idols. It also appears that this particular passage is speaking of fasting, The issue could very likely have revolved around setting certain days aside for fasting unto the Lord. When should a person fast— must they fast on specific days or should they fast when they feel the need to do so for their own spiritual growth? The whole argument has eating and not eating and days intertwined.

The issue of setting aside certain days for fasting was fairly common and became very much a part of the [post apostles] early church practices. Also Romans 14 carries the same message as Colossians, that we are responsible to God, not man. We are not to judge one another, but WE MUST ALL STAND BEFORE THE JUDGMENT SEAT OF CHRIST so then every one of us shall give an account of himself to God."..."To his own master he must stand or fall" And Who is our master? That is the question everyone must answer. "Yes, [if God is our master] he will be held up, for God is able to make him stand."

The passage may say "Let no man judge". But it certainly DOES NOT say that God will not judge.

The message in the BIBLE is consistent. Those who are really in Christ, obey HIS commandments, for He is their Master and they are [as Paul so frequently writes] slaves of Christ. They keep the commands of God, and to God they submit their lives.

The passage is not doing away with God's commandments and Sabbath, the passage is dealing with people judging one another for not observing a fast day, or eating the wrong food on a limited fast day, etc.

The warnings are against substituting God's commands with traditions and commands of men, the warnings are against submitting our lives to the dictates of men and letting men judge us in eternal matters. We must obey God rather than men, for it is God's judgement throne we shall stand before, and it is God who will hold us up, if we submit to His will.

Can you visualize Paul's preaching and using this text at the funeral of the man in Numbers 15:32-36 for picking up a few sticks on the Sabbath? It should cause us no difficulty in seeing that a drastic change has taken place in the rules regulating conduct during the dispensation of the shadow, the weekly Sabbath with its physical rest; compared with the continual rest, in God's spiritual rest, in the completed work for our salvation by Christ on the cross.

No, Paul would not use Romans 14:5 at the funeral in Numbers 15. Paul would more likely use Hebrews 10:26-30

For if we sin wilfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remains no more sacrifice for sins, but a certain fearful looking for of judgment and fiery indignation, which shall devour the adversaries.
He that despised Moses' law died without mercy under two or three witnesses:
Of how much sorer punishment, do you think he is worthy to receive [ who sins willfully after having received the knowledge of the truth] who has trodden under foot the Son of God, and has counted the blood of the covenant, wherewith he was sanctified, an unholy thing, and has made mockery of the Spirit of grace?
For we know him that hath said, Vengeance belongs unto me, I will recompense, saith the Lord. And again, THE LORD SHALL JUDGE HIS PEOPLE.
It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.

The challenger states: The hallowing of the seventh-day was the expression of God's rest in a finished creation, and was a type of God's rest in a finished redemption.

We discussed this concept in detail in Part one. We could even agree with the wording above, but the deeper meaning in his message is the opposite of Biblical truth.-- Isn't that interesting. For indeed the Sabbath day is a memorial of Creation, as well as a sign that we may know that it is Christ who sanctifies us (Ex. 20:11, Ez. 20:12) Christ's sacrifice which assured the final victory of Christ, and the defeat of Satan is once and for all finished. However, Christ is still working to cleanse us individually from sin. The battle is still raging with ever mounting furiousness. We are not yet in Eden restored.

By using the texts that we are saved only in Christ, the challenger tries to say we can disregard God's command to spend that DAY He has sanctified, resting in Him. He implies that now we can disregard the call to come apart and rest awhile from the demands of everyday life. Even with all his illustrations of what the Sabbath DAY was supposed to mean to the Israelites, he fails to see it's spiritual meaning of the Sabbath DAY for us today and seeks to call it a legalistic curse..

They break down regard for the commandments of God so the traditions of man will prevail. For whenever God's holy Sabbath is put aside, the man ordained, unsanctified, sun's day floods in to take it's place.

Continued: The Rest in Hebrews
Go back to: The Sabbath Rest Part One

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