Should Christians keep the commanded Sabbath day; and if so, which day?
Thus the heavens and the earth were finished, and all the host of them. 2 And on the seventh
day God ended His work which He had made; and He rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had made. 3 And God blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it: because
that in it He had rested from all His work which God created and made.
Exodus 16.23a And he said unto them, This is that which the Lord has said, Tomorrow is the rest of the holy sabbath of the Lord:
25 And Moses said, Eat that today; for today is a sabbath unto the Lord: today ye shall not find it in the field. 26 Six days ye shall gather
it; but on the seventh day, which is the sabbath, in it there shall be none.
27 And it came to pass,
that there went out some of the people on the seventh day for to gather, and they found none. 28 And the Lord said unto Moses, How long refuse ye to keep my commandments and my laws?
See, for that the Lord hath given you the sabbath, therefore He giveth 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. 30 So the people rested on the seventh day.
The keeping of the
sabbath day of rest was commanded by the Lord in the wilderness, to prove the children of Israel, whether they would walk in His law, or not; and
this, before they had come unto mount Sinai, and had received the commandments, written in stone with the finger of God.
Ex.16:4 Then said the Lord unto Moses, Behold, I will rain bread from heaven for
you; and the people shall go out and gather a certain rate every day, that I may prove them, whether they will walk in my law, or no.
at mount Sinai.
Exodus 20.8 Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy.
9 Six days shalt thou labour and do all thy work. 10 But the seventh day is the sabbath of the
Lord your 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: 11 For in
six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the Lord blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed (Gk. qa dash;
pronounced it clean; ceremonially and morally) it.
The Lord reiterated the 4th commandnent, after He had given Moses the pattern of the tabernacle and it's instruments; (Ex.24:15---31:18).
Exodus 31.12 And the Lord spoke unto Moses saying, 13 Speak thou also unto the children of Israel, saying, Verily My sabbaths ye shall keep: for it is a sign between Me and you throughout your generations; that ye may know that I am the Lord that doth sanctify you.
14 Ye shall keep the sabbath therefore; for it is holy unto
you: everyone that defileth it shall be put to death: for whosoever doeth any work therin, that soul shall be cut off from among his people. 15 Six days may work be done; but in the seventh
is the sabbath of rest, holy to the Lord: whosoever doeth any work in
the sabbath day, he shall surely be put to death. 16 Wherefore the children of Israel shall keep the sabbath, to observe the sabbath throughout
their generations, for a perpetual covenant.
17 It is a sign between Me and the children of Israel forever; for in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, and on the seventh day He rested and was refreshed. 18 And He gave unto Moses, when He had made an end of communing with him upon mount Sinai, two tables of testimony, tables of stone, written with the finger of God.
How, and why, and when, did this commandment, this perpetual covenant, this everlasting sign between God and the children of Israel forever; this blessed and sanctified and hallowed and holy day, given by God, and spoken by the mouth of God, and written in stone with the finger of God; of keeping the seventh day holy, change to being kept on the first day, by most of the denominational churches
The day of Christ's resurrection on the first day of the week, is understood by many to be the
Lord's day. However, in Isaiah 58.13, the Lord Himself has called the sabbath, My holy day.
Isaiah 58 13 If thou turn away thy
foot from the sabbath, from doing thy pleasure on My holy day; and call the sabbath a delight,
the holy of the Lord, honourable; and shall honour Him, not doing thine own ways, nor finding thine own pleasure, nor speaking thine own words: 14 Then shalt thou delight thyself in the Lord; and I will cause
thee to ride upon the high places of the earth, and feed thee with the heritage of Jacob thy father: for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it.
The Lord Himself has called the sabbath, the seventh day; My holy day:
Why do many think that the first day of the week is the Lord's day?
In Revelation 1:10, John wrote that he was in the spirit
on the Lord's day.
Did the apostle John consider the Lord's day to be the seventh day, or the first day? God knows.
Most denominations consider the first
day to be the Lord's day, based upon the truth that He was resurrected on the first day; and also upon their understanding of Acts 20:7 And upon the first day of the week, when the disciples came together to break bread, Paul preached
unto them, ready to depart on the morrow; and continued with his speech until midnight.
However, considering the full council of scripture, as we must; Acts 2:46 shows clearly that the disciples came together
in the temple, and the breaking of bread from house to house, every day.
Acts2:46 And they, continuing daily
with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart,
As the Lord Himself
called the seventh day, the sabbath day, My holy day, how then can man change that day?
He can not!
But he did: to his own hurt.
In the year 325AD, at the council of Nicea, the Roman emperor Constantine decreed that Sunday, the first day of the week, was to be the day of rest.
In the year 364AD, the church council of Laodicea, ordered that religeous services
were to be conducted on Sundays, not Saturdays. They ruled that Christians should not Judaize, and be idle on Saturdays, but shall work on that day. (see www.religeoustolerance.org/sabbath.htm.
Christian holy days. Page 1)
After the crucification of Jesus, some of His women followers rested
on the sabbath day, and then went to the tomb; showing that the sabbath was kept after the redemption.
Lu.23.55 And the women also, which came with him from Galilee, followed after, and
beheld the seplechre, and how his body was laid. 56 And they returned, and prepared the spices and ointments; and rested the sabbath day
according to the commandment.
Jesus, after His resurrection, after He had shown Himself and spoken to Mary Magdalene, and after she had told the disciples; first ministered
to the assembled disciples on the evening of that same day, which was the first day of the week.
John 20.19 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 said unto them, Peace be unto you.
That evening, on
the firstday of the week, is not Sunday, but Monday, as God's
days are from evening to morning; not as man's days; from morning to evening.
Genesis 1.5b And the evening
and the morning were the first day.
The sabbath, the seventh day, starts
in the evening of the sixth day and continues until the evening of the seventh day.
The evening of the seventh day is the beginning of the first day.
Nehemiah 13.19 And it came
to pass, that when the gates of Jerusalem began to
be dark before the sabbath, I commanded that the gates should be shut, and charged that they should not be opened till after the sabbath:
and some of my servants set I at the gates, that no burden be brought in on the sabbath day.
Jesus taught in the synagogue at Capernaum on
the sabbath day: cast an unclean spirit out of a man; went to the house of Simon and Andrew, healed Simon's mother in law, and when the sabbath was over, they brought unto Him the deseased and posessed
and He healed and delivered them. (Mk.1.21-34)
Mark 1.32 And at even, when the sun did set, they brought unto Him all
that were deseased, and them that were posessed with devils.
The people waited until after the sabbath, had ended at even, to bring unto Him the deseased and posessed, but Jesus cast out an unclean spirit and healed on
Did Jesus then not obey the sabbath?
If Jesus had broken the sabbath, He would then have been a sinner, and not a legal, spotless sacrifice for sin. Therefore
Jesus always observed the sabbath.
The people however, were
observing one of the many corruptions of the sabbath that had been imposed by the priests and the Pharisees.
Matthew 12.8 For the
Son of man is Lord even of the sabbath day. 9 And when He had departed thence, He went into their synagogue: 10 And, behold, there was a man which had his hand withered. And they asked Him, saying, Is it lawful to heal on the sabbath days? that they might accuse Him. 11 And He said unto them, What man is there among you, that shall have one sheep, and if it fall into a pit
on the sabbath day, will he not lay hold on it, and lift it out? 12 How much more then is a man better than a sheep? Wherefore it is lawful
to do well on the sabbath days.
was in no way diminishing or abolishing the sabbath day, but establishing it's proper observance and continuence.
It is lawful to do well on the sabbath days.
Do we then make void the law through faith? God forbid: yes, we establish the law. (this law is the commandments, and not 'the commandments contained in ordinances' which were abolished at the cross. 'The commandments contained in ordinances' were the Levitical, ceremonial, and social laws of Isarel, which were a wall of partition between Israel and the Gentiles.) [See study on:'Law & Commandments'
on this website].
The Sabbath Day starts as it begins to get dark on the sixth day, and ends after sunset on the seventh day.
Have the changes made to the calander changed the seventh day?
When the Julian calander was replaced by the Gregorian calander in 1582AD, ten days were adjusted in order to bring the calander back in time with the seasons: but the sequence of the days remained the same.
4th, 1582, a Thursday, was followed, the next day, by October 15th, 1582, a Friday:
only the dates changed, not the order of the days.
The number of the days do not, and indeed, can not change.
As morning follows evening; so the sequence of the days
continue to follow one another, from the first to the seventh.
day is God's sabbath: Holy, blessed, sanctified, hallowed, honourable, a petpetual covenant, a sign
between God and His people throughout their generations, forever, spoken by the mouth
of the Lord God Himself to Moses, and written in stone by the finger of God.
Moses also reiterated this commandment.
Exodus 35:1 And Moses gathered all the congregation of the children of Israel together, and said unto them, These are the words which the Lord hath commanded, that ye should do them. 2 Six days
shall work be done, but on the seventh day there shall be to you an holy day, a sabbath of rest to the Lord: whosoever doeth work therein shall be put to death.
3 Ye shall kindle no fire throughout your habitations upon the sabbath day.
Deuteronomy 5:12 Keep the sabbath day to sanctify it, as the Lord thy God hath
commanded thee. 13 Six days thou shalt labour, and do all thy work: 14 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, nor thy manservant,
nor thy maidservant, nor thine ox, nor thine ass, nor any of thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates; that thy manservant and thy maidservant may rest as well as thou. 15 And remember that thou wast a servant in the land of Egypt,
and that the Lord thy God, brought thee out thence through a mighty hand and by a stretched out arm: therefore the Lord thy God commanded thee to keep the sabbath day.
are we to make of Col.2.16?
Colossians 2.16 Let no man therefore judge you in meat or in drink, or in respect of an holy day, or of the new moon, or of the sabbath days.
These sabbath days are the holy convocation days during the feasts of the Lord; and not the commanded sabbath day.
It is clearly seen in the context of Eph.2.15 and Col.2.14,20-23, that these observances referred to in Col.2.16, were of the ordinances of the Levitical and ceremonial law that was blotted out on the cross; and not of the commandments. (see study on
'Law & Commandments')
Ephesians 2:14 For he is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle
wall of partition between us; 15 Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances; for to make in himself of twain one new man, so making peace.
Colossians 2:14 Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross;
Colossians 2:20 Wherefore if
ye be dead with Christ from the rudiments of the world, why, as though living in the world, are ye subject to ordinances, 21(Touch not; taste not; handle not; 22 Which all are to perish with the using;) after the
commandments and doctrines of men?
What of Romans14:5,6a ?
Ro.14:5 One man esteemeth one day above another: another esteemeth every day alike. Let every man be
fully presuaded in his own mind. 6a He that regardeth the day, regardeth it unto the Lord; and he that regardeth not the day, to the Lord doeth he not regard it.
We must be fully persuaded in our own
minds, as to whether Paul is speaking here of holy convocation days, new moons, feast days, or is he saying that the commanded sabbath day is to be observed according to our own persuasion.
If we are fully persuaded in our own minds that we may keep any day as the commanded Sabbath, then we must also bear in mind that the commandment also says that we are to work six days and then rest the seventh day. Therefore if we
keep the Sabbath on another day rather that the seventh day, then we must still work for six days and keep every seventh day holy.
Personally, I prefer to observe the commandment
spoken by the mouth of God, and written in stone with the finger of God, and reiterated by Moses of keeping the seventh day holy, rather than persuade myself that I need not observe it on the seventh day, but can observe it on any day. How
For the Lord has said;
(Matthew 5.17) "Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy but to fulfill.
18 For truely I say unto you, till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no way pass from the law, till all be fulfilled. 19 Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and should teach men so shall be
called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven."
Luke 16.16 The law and the prophets were until John: since that time the kingdom of God is preached, and every man presses into it. 17 And it is easier for heaven and earth to pass, than one tittle of the law to fail.
It is essential to understand the difference
between the ordinances of Levitical, ceremonial, social law and statutes, which seperated the children of Israel from the Gentiles, which were abolished
on the cross; and the commandments which shall be in force till all is fulfilled.
The New Covenant.
In the new
covenant, the law; the commandments, are written in our hearts forever.
Jeremiah 31.33 But this
shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the Lord, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write
it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be my people.
Hebrew 8.10 For this is the covenant
that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, saith the Lord; I will put my laws into their mind, and write them in their hearts: and
I will be to them a God, and they shall be to me a people.
The commandments are written in our hearts, to be obeyed, until all be fulfilled,
The commandments are in effect even in the new earth, after the resurrection of the dead, and the judgement at the second appearence of the Lord, and after the end of this world.
Isaiah 65.17 For, behold, I create new heavens, and a new earth: and the former shall not be remembered, nor come to mind. 18 But be you glad and rejoice forever in that which I create: for, behold, I create Jerusalem
a rejoicing, and her people a joy. 19 And I will rejoice in Jerusalem, and joy in my people: and the voice of weeping shall be no more heard in her, nor the voice of crying. 20 There shall be no more thence an infant of days, nor
an old man that has not filled his days: for the child shall die an hundred years old; but the sinner being an hundred years old shall be accursed.
As there are sinners in the new earth, then the commandments are still in force. Children shall come unto the age of accountability and under
the Law at the age of one hundred, break the commandments, and die; as we, at a younger age, did in this lifetime; and become sinners and accursed. (See study on: 'Born in Sin?').
'For the child shall die an hundred
years old', does not mean the child's life will end at 100 years, for a man's life shall be as the age of a tree, and old men shall fulfill their days; (Isaiah 65:22b for as the days of a tree are the days of my people and mine elect shall long enjoy the work
of their hands.)
On keeping the commandments:
John 14.15 If you love Me, keep My commandments.
By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and keep His commandments.
3 For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments: and His commandments are not grevious.
Revelations 22.14 Blessed are they that do His commandments, that they may have
right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city.
The sabbath day is blessed
and sanctified by the Lord. (Gen. 2.3)
It is holy unto the Lord. (Ex.16.23,25)
Given to us by the Lord. (Ex.16.29)
It is the sabbath of
the Lord our God. (Ex.20.10)
The Lord blessed and hallowed the sabbath. (Ex.20.11)
The Lord called
them My sabbaths. (Ex.31.13)
A sign between Me and you throughout your generations.(Ex.31.13)
That we may know that it is the Lord that does sanctify us. (Ex. 31.13)
It is holy unto us. (Ex.31.14)
It is holy to the Lord. (Ex.31.15)
The children of Israel shall keep the sabbath, to observe the sabbath throughout their generations,
for a perpetual covenant. (Ex.31.16)
It is a sign between God
and the children of Israel forever. (Ex 31.17)
A rest and a refreshing. (Ex. 31.17)
A commandment written in stone with the
finger of God. (Ex. 31.18)
God Himself called it My holy day.(Is.58.13)
A delight and holy unto the Lord. (Is.58.13)
If thou turn away thy foot from the sabbath, from doing thy pleasure
on My holy day; and call the sabbath a delight, the holy of the Lord, and shalt honour Him, not doing thine own ways, nor finding thine own pleasure,
nor speaking thine own words: 14 Then shall thou delight thyself in the Lord; and I will cause thee to ride upon the high places of the earth, and feed thee with the heritage of Jacob your father: for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it.
Matthew 2.27a The sabbath was made for man.
Isaiah 58:13,14 the Lord has added more to this commandment; concerning not doing our own pleasure on His Holy Day; and delighting in the sabbath; honouring
God; not doing our own ways, nor finding our own pleasure, nor speaking our own words: and has added the resulting reward for obeying it; "Then shall thou delight thyself in the Lord; and I will cause thee to ride upon the high places of the earth, and feed thee with the heritage of Jacob thy
father: for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it.
Why would we not keep it?
If we, the redeemed, cannot keep the commanded sabbath of rest, which is
a sign between God and His people forever;
that it is the Lord that does sanctify us: how then do we expect to rest in Him
each and every and all day, so that the very God of peace may sanctify us wholly?
1Thes. 5.23 And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God, your whole spirit and soul
and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Is.30.15 For thus saith the Lord God, the Holy One of Israel; In returning and rest shall you be saved; in quietness and confidence
shall be your strength: and you would not.
not be numbered among those who would not.
How very many millions of times has this sin, of not keeping the seventh day holy, gone unconfessed by believers?
All who keep the Sabbath will know what a wonderful blessing it is, and how much our Spiritual walk is advanced and enhanced by doing so.
Once again, we have no hope of resting in, and being sanctified wholly by, the God of peace, if we can not rest in Him on His commanded day of rest.
Be aware of what the Lord God, the Holy One of Israel has said;
Isaiah 30:15 For thus saith the Lord God, the Holy One
of Israel; in returning and rest shall you be saved; in quietness and confidence
shall be your strength:
and you would not.
Do not be numbered among those
who would not.
The Lord sent Jeremiah
the prophet to the kings of Judah, and all Judah, and all the inhabitants of Jerusalem, to tell them of consequences of obeying or disobeying Him concerning even the bearing of a burden
or doing any work, on the Sabbath day.
Jer.17:21 Thus saith the Lord, Take heed to yourselves, and bear no burden on the sabbath day,
nor bring it in by the gates of Jerusalem; 22 Neither carry forth a burden out of your houses on the sabbath day, neither do ye any work, but hallow ye the sabbath day, as I have
commanded your fathers. 23 But they obeyed not, neither inclined their ear, but made their neck stiff, that they might not hear, nor receive instruction. 24 And it shall come to pass, if ye diligently harken unto me, saith the
Lord, to bring in no burden through the gates of this city on the sabbath day, but hallow the sabbath day, to do no work therein; 25 Then shall there enter into the gates of this city kings and princes sitting
upon the throne of David, riding in chariots and on horses, they, and their princes, the men of Judah, and the inhabitants of Jerusalem: and this city shall remain forever. 26 And they shall come from the cities of Judah, and from the places about
Jerusalem, and from the land of Benjamin, and from the plain, and from the mountains, and from the south, bringing burnt offerings, and sacrifices, and meat offerings, and incense, and bringing sacrifices of praise, unto the house of the Lord. 27
But if ye will not harken unto me to hallow the sabbath day, and not to bear a burden, even entering in at the gates of Jerusalem on the sabbath day; then will I kindle a fire in the gates thereof, and it shall devour the palaces of Jerusalem,
and it shall not be quenched.
Consider this event;
Numbers 15: 32 And while the children of Israel were in the wilderness,
they found a man that gathered sticks upon the sabbath day. 33 And they that found him gathering sticks brought him unto Moses and Aaron, and unto all the congregation. 34 And they put him in ward, because it was not declared
what shoud be done to him. 35 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. 36 And all the congregation brought
him without the camp, and stoned him with stones, and he died; as the Lord commanded Moses.
How precious is our redemption from sin. Thank You
Lord Jesus. Thank You Heavenly Father. How precious is Your Mercy, which is new for us every morning, and will endure forever.
We must be aware that when we do sin, we are to come
boldly before His throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need; and to confess our sin to our Heavenly Father, and forgive others; that we may receive forgiveness, and be cleansed from all unrighteousness.
Seek ye first the kingdom of God, and His righteousness,
Do not be one of the many who obey not, neither incline
the ear, but stiffen the neck, that they might not hear, nor receive instruction. Be not one of the many who look for loop-holes by taking scripture out of the context of its full council; who consider all works to be "legalism"; even the works of faith, which
is obedience to God.
Is it "legalism" to not kill? to not commit adultry? to not steal? to not bear false witness? to covet not? to love God with all of our heart, with all of our soul,
with all of our mind and with all of our strength? to love our neighbour as we love ourself? to love one another as He has loved us? Is it "legalism" to have no other God's before Him, to not bow down to idols, nor
take His name in vain? is it 'legalism" to honour our father and mother?
Why then should any consider it "legalism" to keep the Sabbath day holy?
Love God, obey His commandments.
1Jn.5:3 For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments: and His commandments are not grevous.
Rev.22:14 Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city.
Be numbered among His children forever.
(see study on 'Resting in the Lord').
Romans 13: 11 And that, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep: for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed. 12 The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness,
and let us put on the armour of light.
It is, in these days, greatly important for the people of God to understand that we are in a battle; and we must don the full armour of God daily,
and to stand against the wiles of the devil. (see study on 'The Armour of God').
We must rest in, and trust in, the strength of the
Lord, and in the power of His might and victory. (See study on 'Resting in the Lord').
Love God, obey His commandments.