XIIIa.2. The Sabbath

The Sabbath

By: Dr. Max D. Younce

0088

Are we to worship on Saturday?

There are various claims concerning the Sabbath. Some hold that after the resurrection of Christ, the Sabbath was changed to the first day of the week, Sunday, in commemoration of the resurrection. Another view, held by Seventh Day Adventists, is that the moral law, the Ten Commandments, have never been done away with; so, that we are still to worship on Saturday, the Jewish Sabbath. Still another view set forth is that, after the resurrection of Christ, the Law including the Sabbath was fulfilled by Christ; thus, quoting "For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone that believeth". (Romans 10:4) They also maintain that the Law was given only to Israel and was only a shadow of future things to come. They gather together on Sunday, the first day of the week, not of legal duty because of a commandment; but, of their privilege under grace to worship and fellowship together in commemoration of Christ’s death and resurrection.

Let us go to the Authority, the Word of God and get the answer.

1. "Sabbath". What is the meaning of the word? The word "Sabbath" appears for the first time in the Bible in Exodus 16:23, "And he said unto them, That is that which the Lord hath said, tomorrow is THE REST OF THE HOLY SABBATH UNTO THE LORD...". It simply means to "stop, cease what you are doing, or take an intermission from your previous labor and activities". The word, itself, is a transliteration from the Hebrew and the Greek. The Hebrew for "Sabbath" is "shabbath" and the Greek is "sabbaton". Both are brought over into our English, untranslated. Literally, Exodus 16:23 would read, "REMEMBER THE REST DAY AND KEEP IT HOLY".

In the Old Testament, the word "Sabbath" is used approximately 75 times; and, in 35 cases, it is in reference to the ceremonial "Sabbath Day". The other 40 times it has reference to the weekly Sabbath on the seventh day. We also need to take notice that, in the New Testament, the word "Sabbath" occurs over 60 times, but never appears again after Acts 18:4.

2. Many Sabbaths. Many people are not aware that Jehovah had given other Sabbath Days, contained in the ceremonial laws. The Feast of Trumpets, which fell on the first day of the seventh month, was called a Sabbath. Leviticus 23:24,25 states, "In the seventh month, in the first day of the month, shall ye have a SABBATH, a memorial of blowing of trumpets, an holy convocation. Ye shall do NO SERVILE WORK therein."

The Day of Atonement was called a Sabbath, as we read in Leviticus 16:29,31, "...In the seventh month, on the tenth day of the month, ye shall afflict your soul, and DO NO WORK AT ALL, whether it be one of your own country, or a stranger that sojourneth among you. It shall be a SABBATH OF REST unto you..." Notice in Leviticus 23:27,28,30-32, concerning the same feast, "On the tenth day of the seventh month there shall be a day of atonement: it shall be an holy convocation unto you...and ye shall do NO WORK in that same day...and whatsoever soul it be that doeth any work in that same day, the same soul will I destroy from among his people...ye shall do NO MANNER OF WORK...It shall be unto you a SABBATH of REST...".

We have the same with the Feast of Passover, as recorded in Leviticus 23:7, "In the first day ye shall have an holy convocation: ye shall do NO SERVILE WORK therein". The same was true concerning the Feast of Pentecost (Leviticus 23:21).

The Feast of Tabernacles was also called a Sabbath. It lasted seven days and no work was to be done on the first day, nor on the eighth day, which was the day after the feast. Look at Leviticus 23:34,35,39. "Speak unto the children of Israel, saying, The fifteenth day of this seventh month shall be the feast of tabernacles for seven days unto the LORD...On the first day shall be an holy convocation: ye shall do NO SERVILE WORK therein...on the first day shall be a SABBATH, and on the eighth day shall be a SABBATH".

A Sabbath for the Land to Rest. We have this recorded in Leviticus 25:1-3. And the LORD spake unto Moss on Mount Sinai, saying...Speak unto the children of Israel, when ye come into the Land which I gave, then shall the land keep a SABBATH undo the LORD...Six years thou shalt sow thy field, and six years thou shalt prune thy vineyard, and gather the fruit thereof...But in the seventh year shall be a SABBATH OF REST unto the land..."

So far, we have found that God had given many Sabbaths, besides just the 7th day, weekly Sabbath, to the nation of Israel. One can easily determine by the context which Sabbath the Lord has reference to. Something else we have seen thus far is that, ALL the SABBATHS were REST DAYS; including the Sabbath of the Land, the seventh-day Sabbath, and the ceremonial Sabbaths.

3. The Fourth Commandment - The Sabbath. In Exodus, Chapter 20, we have the record of the well-known Ten Commandments. In Verses 9,10, we have the Fourth Commandment, which is the Sabbath. "Six days shalt thou labor, and do all thy work...But the seventh day is the sabbath of the LORD thy God: in it thou shalt NOT DO ANY WORK, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates".

As one can see, the Sabbath was a day of complete rest for everyone within the Jewish nation, including the children, servants, visitors, cattle, oxen, and etc. This principle was laid down by God at Creation, as stated in Verse 11, "For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that therein is, and rested the seventh day..." (Genesis 2:1-3)

NO SABBATH FOR 2500 YEARS. The principle of one day in seven for rest, was laid down and in the mind of God from Creation; but, was never given to man as a commandment until 2500 years later in Exodus16. We have no record of Adam, Abel, Seth, Enoch, Noah, Abraham, Isaac, or Jacob ever observing the Sabbath. Only after Israel was liberated from Egypt and received the Law, did the Sabbath appear as a commandment. We have no record of Moses ever keeping any Sabbath until Exodus 16, after Israel’s deliverance from Egypt. This is the first mention of the weekly Sabbath, in connection with the giving of the manna. Let us notice Exodus 16:21,29,30: "Six days ye shall gather it: but on the seventh day, which is the Sabbath, in it there shall be none...See, for that the LORD hath given you the SABBATH, therefore giveth he you on the sixth day the bread for two days; ABIDE YE EVERY MAN IN HIS PLACE, LET NO MAN GO OUT OF HIS PLACE ON THE SEVENTH DAY...So the people rested on the seventh day".

Two things are evident:

(1.) This commandment was given only to the nation of Israel through Moses.

(2.) It was a complete day of rest and no person was ever to leave their dwelling place.

For those who maintain we are to worship on Saturday, the Sabbath; we find just the opposite in the Bible. Saturday, the Sabbath, was never given as a day of worship; but, rather, a day of complete rest. It was not a day of religious gathering; neither that of any public gathering for fellowship or business. They were commanded to rest, and not leave their homes. Here, again, is the command concerning the Sabbath. "See, for that the LORD hath given you the sabbath...abide ye every man in his place, LET NO MAN GO OUT OF HIS PLACE on the seventh day". (Leviticus 16:29).

Those, today, that say we are to worship on the Sabbath, or Saturday are laboring under a drastic misconception! First of all, they must be Jews, for the Law was never given to Gentiles. Second, they break the Law of the Sabbath by going to church and worshipping. Remember, the Sabbath was a day of complete rest. It was not a day of worship, and you were never to leave your house.

Years ago, I was talking with a lady, who was a Seventh-Day Adventist, and her husband, of another denomination. During the conversation, she stated that tomorrow (Saturday) she was going to church and it made her feel so good to worship on the real Sabbath. I asked her how far she had to drive to church and she answered "About 15 miles." It completely ruined her whole day when I told her that, under the Law, she would be taken out and stoned to death! I reminded her that Exodus 16:29 says you are not to leave your house on the Sabbath, and Exodus 31:15 says you shall be put to death for breaking the Sabbath. Numbers 15:32-35 tells us that "Sabbath-breaking" is punishable by stoning. Her husband later told me he had never seen his wife so upset. She would have been better off to listen to the Word of God, than to her "church". A warning to everyone is found in the middle verse of the Bible, Psalm 118:8. "It is better to trust in the LORD that to put confidence in man!" Jeremiah puts it this way in Jeremiah 17:5, "Thus saith the LORD; Cursed be the man that trusteth in man, and maketh flesh his arm, and whose heart departeth from the LORD".

4. What is the Law? Many people have the mistaken idea that the Law of the Old Testament is only the Ten Commandments. The word "law" is used in reference to the entire Law, to distinguish it from the rest of the Old Testament. The Law included the moral laws, the civil laws, the ceremonial laws; and, was given only to the nation of Israel. I have talked to several rabbis, over the years. All agreed that there are approximately 720 laws, under the caption of "The Law". Sometimes you will find the word "Law" is in reference to the Ten Commandments or the "Tables of Stone". This is made clear by the context. Outside of this, the word "Law" is all-inclusive of the moral, civil, and ceremonial laws of God, unless, otherwise specified. For example, in I Corinthians 9:9, where Paul quotes from the Old Testament Law, "For it is written in the law of Moses, Thou shalt not muzzle the mouth of the ox that treadeth out the corn". This appears nowhere in the Ten Commandments; but, is a civil law found in Deuteronomy 25:4; yet, specified as part of the law of Moses.

Unless a person keeps the whole Law, all 720, the Bible says they are "cursed". Paul makes this clear in writing to the Galatians, "For as many as are of the works of the law are under the CURSE: For it is written, Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them". (Galatians 3:10). This is from Deuteronomy 29:26, which is part of the Law, itself.

5. Who changed the Sabbath? As we have seen, the Sabbath has never been changed. There is not one verse of Scripture anywhere in the Bible to substantiate a change of the weekly Sabbath! It was always on the seventh day of the week--Saturday. To say "Sunday is now the Sabbath" is not found in Scripture. Neither is it found in Scripture that the first day of the week (Sunday) is ever called "the Sabbath".

In Romans 10:4 we read, "For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth..." With Christ’s payment on the cross and His resurrection, the Law ended. This included the whole Law, moral, civil, and ceremonial. Since this included the seventh-day, weekly Sabbath, does it then include the end of the moral law contained in the Ten Commandments? It most assuredly does! Then one may ask, "Do we not have a moral code of laws to go by today in God’s Word?" Yes, we do! Living in the Dispensation of Grace, or Church Age, we have all of the Ten Commandments reiterated several times in the New Testament, with the exception of one--THE SABBATH! Notice the following with their references. We are not giving all the references, just enough to suffice.

(1.) "No other Gods before me". - John 4:21-23; I Timothy 2:5; James 2:19; I Corinthians 8:6.

(2.) "My name in vain". - James 5:12; Matthew 5-33-37; Matthew 6:;5-9

(3.) "No idols and images" - Acts 17:29; Romans 1:22,23; Ii John 5:21; I Corinthians 10:7,14

(4.) "Honor thy father and mother" - Ephesians 6:1-4

(5.) "Thou shalt not kill." - Matthew 5:21,22; Romans 13:9

(6.) "Not commit adultery" - I Corinthians 5:1-13; I Corinthians 6:9-20; Hebrews 13:4; Romans 13:9

(7.) "Thou shalt not steal" - Ephesians 4:28; II Thessalonians 3:10-12; James 5:1-4; Romans 13:9

(8.) "Thou shalt not bear false witness" - Colossians 2:9; Ephesians 4:25; Romans 13:9

(9.) "Thou shalt not covet" - Ephesians 5:3; Luke 12:55-21; Romans 13:9

(10.) "The Sabbath" - Found nowhere in the New Covenant made upon Calvary.

For those of you that want to be justified by the Law; remember, you must keep all of God’s Law absolutely perfect. This includes the moral, civil, and ceremonial laws, which totaled approximately 720. If you break even one of these laws, you are as guilty and condemned as if you had broken them all. The Word of God makes this clear in James 2:10, "For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, HE IS GUILTY OF ALL". There are those who want to justify themselves by keeping the Law, but do not want the penalty of the Law. For example, dishonoring your parents warranted the death penalty (Deuteronomy 21:18-21; Exodus 21:17). This was the 5th Commandment. What about adultery, the 7th Commandment? Christ said in Matthew 5:28, "That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust hath committed adultery with her already". Leviticus 20:10 says that both the adulterer and adulteress "SHALL SURELY BE PUT TO DEATH".

Those of you that want to be justified by worshipping on Saturday, the "Sabbath", have condemned yourself to death by stoning. (Exodus 31:15). If you left your residence and went to church to worship, you have broken the 4th Commandment covering the Sabbath. You are not to leave your house for any reason, as the Sabbath was a complete day of REST, not "running around"! (Exodus 16:29,30). Did you cook anything, or even turn on your stove on Saturday? If you did, then you are to be taken out and stoned to death. In Numbers 15:32,35, the Israelites found a man gathering sticks on the Sabbath. It could have been to build a fire for warmth or cooking purposes, we do not know. Nevertheless, he had broken the Sabbath Day Law and Verse 35 gives us the Lord’s response. "And the Lord said unto Moses, The man shall surely be put to death: all the congregation SHALL STONE HIM with stones without the camp...And all the congregation brought him without the camp, and stoned him with stones, and HE DIED: as the LORD commanded Moses".

The Law given to Moses for Israel upon Sinai was a perfect Law reflecting the glory of God. The Law was given to show mankind his inability to be as righteous as God, Himself. Therefore, it was a "mirror" in which man could see himself for what he is--a sinner! Romans 3:20, "Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin".

Therefore, God has concluded that we, "All have sinned, and come short of the glory of God" (i.e., His absolute righteousness). It, therefore, becomes a matter of being justified by Grace (Mt. Calvary) or Law (Mt. Sinai). Galatians 2:16 clarifies the issue, "Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified".

Those who extract the seventh-day "Sabbath" (Saturday) and the various laws concerning what may be eaten and what was forbidden (Leviticus, Chapter 11), seem to disregard the rest of the laws in Leviticus. As you read all 27 chapters of Leviticus, you will find myriads of laws--all received by Moses as part of the entire Law. Notice what God says in the last verse of the last chapter about all of the laws given in Leviticus. "These are the commandments, which the LORD commanded Moses for the CHILDREN OF ISRAEL in Mount Sinai". (Leviticus 27:34).

Therefore, when Christ died upon Calvary and was resurrected, the Law came to an end in its entirety. It could be stated no clearer than in Romans 10:4, "For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone that believeth"... The end of "The Law" is the whole law, all inclusive of the moral, civil, and ceremonial laws. We are given the righteousness of Jesus Christ, Himself, upon trusting Him as our personal Savior. And be found in him (Christ), not having my own righteousness; which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, THE RIGHTEOUSNESS WHICH IS OF GOD BY FAITH."

6. Sunday, the first day of the week. How did it come to be that the bulk of Christendom worships and observes the first day of the week as the Christian "Sabbath"? There are several things we need to recognize and substantiate with Scripture:

(1.) The first day of the week, Sunday, is never referred to in the Bible as "the Sabbath Day".

(2.) The assembling of believers in the Book of Acts was never on the seventh day, Saturday.

(3.) Jesus never recognized the Sabbath after His resurrection.

(4.) We have no record, anywhere in the Bible, that Jesus ever met with his disciples, or any group, for worship on the Sabbath Day--after His resurrection.

(5.) After the resurrection, when Christ met with others and the day is specified, it is always the first day of the week, Sunday.

(6.) Christians are commanded to assemble themselves together for the purpose of: a. resting from their weekly jobs of physical labor, b. to fellowship, exhort, and care for one another, c. to partake of the Lord’s Supper, d. to study and learn from the pastor and/or teacher of the local assemblies.

7. Christians are commanded to assemble themselves together regularly. "Not forsaking the assembling of yourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much more, as ye see the day approaching." (Hebrews 10:25). When we assemble together as Christians, what a wonderful opportunity to encourage someone who is going through some difficult times. Having a good attitude, a pleasing and happy disposition, rubs off and encourages others. An unforgettable incident happened at my Ordination, many years ago. An elderly lady came up to me after the service and told me she had been praying for me ever since I was saved. She related how proud she was of me for yielding to God’s call to Bible college and to prepare for the pastorate. One will never know what an encouragement that was to me to finish the course I was about to begin. Those words rang in my ears many times while going through college, especially when I was thinking of quitting!.

8. The Early Church worshipped on the first day, Sunday, NOT the seventh day, Saturday. We are told, specifically, in Hebrews 10:25, as Christians, not to forsake the assembling of ourselves together. Notice, carefully, that the assembling of the Christians in the Book of Acts (the "History Book" of the Early Church) was never on the seventh day, Saturday. Jesus never recognized the Sabbath (Saturday) after His resurrection; and, we find no record that He ever met with His disciples or any other group for the purpose of worship on the Sabbath, after His resurrection.

John 20:19 tells us that Jesus met with His disciples on the first day of the week. "Then the same day at evening, being the FIRST DAY OF THE WEEK, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled for fear of the Jews, came Jesus and stood in the midst, and saith unto them, Peace be unto you." Then we have recorded, just one week later, the disciples assembled again on the first day of the week, Sunday. "And after EIGHT DAYS again his disciples were within, and Thomas with them: then came Jesus, the doors being shut, and stood in the midst, and said, Peace be unto you." (John 20:26 ) Here is Jesus, during the 40 days after His resurrection, meeting with His disciples on the EIGHTH DAY, or the first day of the next week--Sunday. Within these 40 days before His ascension, we can find no record that He ever met with His disciples on the Sabbath; nor does He even mention the Sabbath.

Now, let us go to the Book of Acts, the "History Book" of the Early Church, where we find the believers meeting on the first day of the week and never on the Sabbath. "And again the FIRST DAY OF THE WEEK, when the disciples came to break bread, Paul preached unto them, ready to depart on the morrow; and continued his speech until midnight". (Acts 20:7).

Could the Word of God be any clearer, that the customary day of believer’s assembling themselves together was the FIRST DAY OF THE WEEK, Sunday; NOT the Sabbath.

One more case in point. You may recall in I Corinthians 16:1,2, when Paul was writing to the Corinthians about giving. He had advised the other churches in Galatia to take up a collection for the poor, less-fortunate Christians in Jerusalem; and, he was advising the Corinthians to do the same. "Now concerning the collection for the saints; as I have given order to the churches of Galatia, even do ye...upon the FIRST DAY OF THE WEEK (Sunday, not the Sabbath), let every one of you lay by him in store, as God hath prospered him, that there be no gatherings when I come." This was not an isolated case with the Corinthians, as Paul had also instructed the Galatian churches to do the same thing on the same day. Sunday, the FIRST DAY OF THE WEEK.

Question: What about Paul preaching in the synagogues on the Sabbath (Saturday)? As we go through the Book of Acts, we do find that Paul went into the synagogues on several occasions and preached the Gospel. This, of course, was on the Sabbath or Saturday. Those that Paul was trying to reach by preaching in the synagogues were LOST people, still trying to keep the Law for their justification. Paul’s message to them was Grace; not, Law! Paul did not break bread or worship with them. That was not his purpose. He was capitalizing on an opportunity to reach a lot of people at one time and give the Gospel.

Paul describes it this way in I Corinthians 9:19,20, "For though I be free from all men, yet have I made myself servant unto all, that I might gain the more...And unto the Jews I became a Jew, that I might gain the Jews; to them that are under the law, as under the law, that I might gain them that are under the law". Paul gives his purpose for going into the synagogue on the Sabbath very precisely. It was to win his kinsmen, the Jews, to Christ; not to worship or fellowship with them.

Question: How long would Paul continue this practice? Let us return to Acts 1:8, where we have the commission, or "marching papers of the Christian" given by the Lord, Himself. "...ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and in Samaria, and to the uttermost part of the earth". Paul followed this order, "To the Jew first"., until they finally rejected his message. At that point,, he turned to the Gentiles and the rest of the world, regardless of nationality, color, or creed.

Acts 18:4-6 is the record of the last time that Paul preached to them on the Sabbath Day. "And he (Paul) reasoned in the synagogue every sabbath, and persuaded the Jews and the greeks...Paul was pressed in the spirit, and testified to the JEWS that Jesus (humanity) was Christ (deity)...and when they opposed themselves, and blasphemed, he (Paul) shook his raiment, and said unto them: FROM HENCEFORTH I WILL GO UNTO THE GENTILES, and he departed thence".

This is the last mention of the Sabbath in the Book of Acts. It is no more "To the Jew first."; nor is there any more worship under the Law on the Sabbath. Why? Because "Christ is the END OF THE LAW for righteousness to everyone that believeth".

Christians, today, are instructed to set aside a day for gathering together. Hebrews 10:25 tells us, "Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching". This would be a time of rest, physically and mentally, from our jobs of weekly labor and stress. It is a time of spiritual refreshment as Christians gather together, learning the Word of God, observing the Lord’s Supper, fellowshipping and singing together. It also provided a special day for all Christians to unite in giving their offerings unto the Lord as the Lord "hath prospered them". This would be following the principle laid down in I Corinthians 15:40, "Let all things be done decently and in order".

Therefore, that one day a week which was observed by the disciples was the first day of the week--Sunday. These were Christians, set free from the law of sin and death, including the seventh-day Sabbath. Remember, whenever we find the disciples meeting together, and the day is mentioned, it is always the first day of the week--Sunday.

Let me recapitulate. John 20:19 says it was the "first day of the week" when Christ met with them. Eight days later, that again being the "first day of the week", Christ met with the disciples as recorded in John 20:26. In Acts 20:7, Paul met with the disciples on the "first day of the week"--Sunday. From I Corinthians 16:1, we find that all the churches in Galatia, as well as the one in Corinth, assembled together on the "FIRST DAY OF THE WEEK". One can easily see God’s will, instructing the disciples through the guidance of the Holy Spirit, in choosing a specific day for worship and fellowship; thus, corroborating His Word, "Let all things be done decently and in order". ( I Corinthians 15:40).

This principle has been followed by Christendom, ever since it was first established by the disciples after the resurrection of Christ.

Just imagine what chaos we would have in the work force if some Christians wanted Monday off to worship. Then, there would be some who wanted Tuesday, or Wednesday, or Thursday, or maybe Friday or Saturday off to worship. No company could run efficiently if a different group of people were missing every day. God knew exactly what He was doing when He established a specific day, that being THE FIRST DAY OF THE WEEK, for Christians to assemble together. It also protected the manufacturing plants and all companies, today, who need a full work force each day to effectively turn out their product or service.

What the Saturday "Sabbath" worshippers need to know If you hold to worshipping on the "Sabbath" or Saturday, you are under the curse of the Law. You are required to obey all of the 720 laws; that is, the moral, civil, and ceremonial, all the Law of God. Your instructions are in Galatians 3:10, "For as many are as of the works of the Law are under THE CURSE: for it is written, CURSED in every one that continueth not in ALL THINGS which are written IN THE BOOK OF THE LAW TO DO THEM".

May I also point out that you are to work six days every week-- and no less, or you have also broken the Law of God and are under its curse! Notice, the 5th Commandment concerning the Sabbath requires you to work six full days, not five, or five and a half! "Six days shalt thou labor, and do all thy work". (Exodus 20:9). Can any Seventh-Day worshipper claim this fulfillment of never missing a week of working six full days? "For whosoever shall keep the whole law; and yet offend in ONE point, he is guilty of all". (James 2:10).

OUR ETERNAL LIFE. Eternal life is a free gift, bought and paid for by the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ, and received by faith. "For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God" NOT OF WORKS, lest any man should boast".

God does not give you the faith to believe with. He gives you the evidence of the death and resurrection of Christ. Therefore, it becomes your responsibility to believe or not believe. You are totally responsible for your own choice. John 3:36 gives the verdict for both choices: "He that believeth on the Son hath EVERLASTING LIFE: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; BUT THE WRATH OF GOD ABIDETH ON HIM". "Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ". (Romans 5:1 )

OUR EARTHLY WALK. At the moment we trust Christ as our personal Savior, we are indwelt with a new nature--the Holy Spirit. (Ephesians 1:13). The believer still has his old, Adamic nature he was born with. Therefore, both natures are in a battle to control the believer’s life. Galatians 5:17, 18 tells us "For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary he one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would...But if ye be led of the Spirit, ye are not under the law". This includes the Law of the Saturday "Sabbath" as well as the other 719 laws!

The flesh always seeks to exalt self; whereas, the Holy Spirit seeks to exalt the Lord Jesus Christ. Romans 8:1,2 is speaking of our service to the Lord and not of Salvation. The Lord makes it very clear that all works done out of the flesh will be condemned. "There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, BUT after the Spirit...For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me FREE from the LAW of sin and death".

Remember, the specifics of the law of the seventh-day Sabbath were: you could not leave your dwelling place, you could not build a fire, you could not cook nor do work of any kind on the Sabbath. Violation of these Sabbath restrictions required the death penalty, by stoning. The Sabbath was a day of complete rest only. Those, today, holding on to the Saturday "Sabbath" ought to be so thankful they are living in the Day of Grace and will only suffer loss of reward at the Judgment Seat of Christ (I Corinthians 3:11-15), instead of being stoned to death under the Law! Therefore, "...the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death".

We are grateful to the Lord that the disciples followed the Holy Spirit’s leading in setting aside the FIRST DAY OF THE WEEK (Sunday) for Christians to assemble. Following this example, we can use this day, not only to rest, BUT also to worship together, partake of the Lord’s Supper, fellowship, exhort others, and to study God’s Word through the preaching of the Word. This provides us opportunity to exalt the Lord by the Holy Spirit, and not the flesh, by exalting self through the keeping of the Old Testament Law of the Sabbath. Proverbs 3:5,6 sums up the whole matter of the Flesh and Spirit conflict.

"Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding...In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths."

 

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