Further Information Regarding the Truth of the BiblicalSabbath Day:
"Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy."
So many people think negative when they hear a word so ripe and pure with Biblical connotation as "the sabbath," the average pagan might think of the dark rock band Black Sabbath, or of Halloween and "the witch's sabbath," and some sports nuts may think of "the sabbath" as a day which attempts to muck with "Sunday football," or for those of a bigoted bent, the angry automatic snarl is "Jewish Sabbath."
The truly surprising things is, viewed from a Biblical perspective, there are only three kinds of sabbaths:
1. the weekly Sabbath...
...instituted at creation when God rested from His work (Genesis 2:1-3) and later set in the heart of the 10 Commandments as #4, Remember the Sabbath (Exodus 20:8-11) and called by the Lord "My holy day" (Isaiah 58:13) and later claimed by Jesus in the New Testament as the day He is Lord of (Matthew 12:8, Mark 2:28, Luke 6:5), making the Sabbath "The Lord's Day" (Revelation 1:10, Isaiah 58:13). Jesus claimed the Sabbath was presented to man as a gift (Mark 2:27) and later confirmed as a special day that remains for the believer in God (Hebrews 4:9) written in the heart of the New Covenant people (Hebrews 8:8-10), His laws written in our mind and heart, a day that will remain until the "last days of Earth" (Matthew 24:3,20) and continue to even be kept in heaven! (Isaiah 66:22-23) and all God's people are promised heavenly blessings if they keep the Lord's Sabbath day (Psalms 119:47, 37:4, Isaiah 58:13-14, Psalms 1:2-3).
Not a bad deal, a gift from God -- His very own day of rest -- a day of DELIGHT (not heavy burdens and do-and-don't lists and wrest, ticker-tape spirituality) for all people, throughout all time, a day which brings blessings, a day which Jesus and the disciples and apostles kept faithfully as a return-gift to God; and yet it is strange how when people discover this Biblical truth, apart from any "church" or "religion" they are shunned and despised, and often labeled a "cult."
Makes a Christian wonder, shouldn't it? In fact, the Bible is profoundly clear (Colossians 2:16) in forbidding any Christian from judging another Christian in regard to keeping the Sabbath (many Christians, however, attempt to twist this scripture into justifying their NOT keeping the Sabbath), or in meat (and I'll tell ya, as both a Sabbath keeper and a vegetarian, I have been judged harshly by "Christians" for both these Biblical concepts -- remember, not everyone who claims to be of God, is of God), or in drink (some people have given up the Sabbath, but oddly, not the eating and the drinking, another thought to ponder).
2. commemorative sabbaths...
...instituted by God to memorialize key Biblical events, such as the deliverance of Israel from Egypt, which also point forward to the very real and historical ultimate deliverance of the people of this world from sin (John 3:16) -- these are monthly, and annual sabbaths, called shadows (Colossians 2:16,17); traditionally Christianity has ignored these "shadow sabbaths," but many people are waking to the realization that they are still shadows of things to come, meaning that not all the "feast sabbaths" (Leviticus 23:2, Numbers 15:3) have been completely fulfilled as yet.
In fact, the Bible clearly states that "the law" of God is a shadow of good things to come (the law is NOT those good things, but a shadow of them) (Hebrews 10:1) that haven't happened yet! Meaning, there are many good things that are still going to happen in this tired old world. Perhaps these commemorative sabbaths should be studied out by each seeker of truth, for themselves (2 Timothy 2:15).
3. legalistic sabbaths...
...with all forms of legalism fall into two categories, that which either a. warp God's true laws into something they were never meant to be or do or accomplish, and b. man-made laws or commandments that through tradition are accepted as God-ordained law, and generally, in time, come to replace God's instituted laws.
The Apostle Paul constantly struggled with the abusers of the first version, a. (Romans 7) while Jesus constantly wrestled with the chief abusers of b. (Mark 7). Which form of legalism is worse, a. or b.?
Where do people fit into legalism today? ALL forms of Christianity and other religions fall into either a. or b. -- but do we have to be legalistic? Are you legalistic? Was Jesus lying when He said He did not come to destroy the law?
God's True Day of Rest and Delight!
I invite you to give the Sabbath a try, as the Lord God intended you to do -- as a day of delight, of peace, of family, of rest. Bring some clarity back into your life, some rest from all the chaos. Enjoy God's holy day as an extended period of time wherein you can "have a date with God," get to know Him better, gently concentrate on Him and everything good. Think of it, a whole day to bask in God's grace, to soak in His love -- a precious barrier against the day-to-day worries and fears of this dark world we live in.
Take your time in getting to know Him -- the Sabbath is all about time, and how you use it, a gift from God to you. Give the Sabbath a try. It sure can't hurt! Ater all is said and done, what IS more important to you, what God wants and asks, or what you have learned through the tradition of men? Think about it. Let it be between YOU and GOD (that's what the Sabbath is all about, from the beginning to the end, throughout the Bible), come before God and talk to Him about it -- you don't have to tell me or any other person. Have a special date with God, it sure can't hurt you!
The Sabbath begins every Friday evening at sunset, and carries through bissfully until Saturday evening at sunset (this is the way God set up time to work, the first part of the day is evening, night, followed by day). This is the Biblical plan that God gave us, as a free gift, for our benefit. God instituted the plan of "every Seventh day," not a people-generated "one out of seven days." Look at your calendar. Sunday is the first day of the week, the day on which Jesus rose from the dead (think about it, if you KNOW which day Jesus rose from the dead, a day the Bible designates as the FIRST, then you logically know which day is the SEVENTH), and Saturday is the seventh, the day that Jesus kept faithfully, as was His custom, God's holy day -- God does not change.
Pay attention to God, He is holy, as is His holy day, the Sabbath. Think about it, the Sabbath was God's "day" before He ever gave it to us. The Sabbath existed before sin entered the world, the Sabbath existed before the Ten Commandments were written upon stone by God's own finger, the Sabbath will exist in the last days of earth AND in heaven. God gave the Sabbath to us, as a gift, the Sabbath was made for man, all mankind, throughout eternity. The Sabbath is YOURS today, as well as mine, it is a free gift, given to you by God Himself.
according to the perfect nature of the number six,
the Father hallowed the day following, the seventh,
praising it, and calling it holy. For that day is the
festival, not of one city or one country, but of
all the earth; a day which alone it is right to call
the day of festival for all people, and
the birthday of the world.
Philo Judaeus of Alexandria
(circa 20 B.C.-50 A.D. )
"Every seventh day a miracle comes to pass,
the resurrection of the soul, of the soul of
man and of the soul of all things. A
medieval sage declares: The world which
was created in six days was a world without
a soul. It was on the seventh day that the
world was given a soul. This is why it is said:
"and on the seventh day He rested
vayinnafash" (Exodus 31:17);
nefesh means a soul."
Abraham Joshua Heschel
Farrar, Straus & Giroux, NY
Thus the heavens and the earth were finished, and all the host of them. 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. 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.
Think about it. The One Commandment that God began with "REMEMBER" is the one Commandment out of ten that "teachers" tell you to forget. Others "teach" you can pick and choose your day, because God meant to call them the TEN SUGGESTIONS. The Fourth Commandment is all about your relationship with God, a special day for YOU, a free gift to all humankind, a day of special DELIGHT. And they tell you to forget about it.
Does God want you to obey? To remember? Or was He kidding?
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