Keeping The Sabbath: What Does It Mean To Rest Today
So what does this look like practically? Does it mean attending a weekend church service, or turning off work emails, or volunteering at a soup kitchen? Does it matter what day you observe Sabbath? Your Sabbath could certainly include those activities, and it could take place on the same day every week! But the text seems to emphasize the purpose of the Sabbath, rather than telling us rules for how to observe it.
As followers of Jesus, we aren’t required to follow the laws given to Israel by God exactly. These were given at a specific time to a specific people group for a specific purpose. Yet the wisdom of those laws is enduring, and the law of the Sabbath is pure gold. It is not a commandment we are bound to its a promise were invited to.
Sabbath rest is an invitation to practice for eternity. Its where we regularly, intentionally engage in Gods rule and reign in our hearts and on earth. We have to shabbat in order to nuakhto stop working and truly rest in Gods presence. When we practice this intentional stop, we make room for him to take up residence in our individual lives. When we do this together, were making space for it in our communities. Even better, we are taking part in this new creation story, setting the stage for God to make his dwelling place, his resting place, right here.
Day And Night Night And Day
Those advocating a sunrise beginning to the day sometimes point to the large number of verses that use the word day before the word night. But none of these verses purports to define when a 24-hour day starts.
Many of them, like many of the other verses that have night before day, are just expressing continually, and dont have anything to do with the start time of a 24-hour day.
Why Is The Sabbath Truth Rarely Taught
If these points are true, why dont we hear more pastors teaching them? If the Sabbath is Saturday, then why dont the majority keep the true Sabbath day? How could the majority be wrong and even more to the point, do we still have to keep the Seventh day Sabbath at all? Revelation 13 tells us that Satan would give position and authority to the persecuting power described in Daniel that changed Gods law. Why do you think Satan did this? This power that persecuted the saints for 1260 dark years murdered anyone found keeping the Seventh day Sabbath according to the Commandment of God. Anyone that had a different view to this persecuting power was considered a heretic and heretics were to be burned. As a result, the Sabbath truth was nearly murdered out of existence and since most Churches originated from this persecuting power, most Churches now ignorantly keep the wrong day they instituted. The final change to the Sabbath day was in the fourth century but note that the change originated from Satanic and pagan sun worship as early as 2000 B.C. Remember that Satan was responsible for all of this and did not go to all this effort for no reason.
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Practice Of The Original Apostles
Throughout the book of Acts, we find that the Apostles continued to observe the Sabbath regularly. They did this with Jews as well as with Gentiles, and-guided by the Holy Spirit-the entire early New Testament Church continued to meet on the seventh-day Sabbath for decades after Jesus’ death. Even mainline Protestant historians acknowledge this fact. In his book, The Story of the Christian Church, Jesse Lyman Hurlbut states, “As long as the church was mainly Jewish, the Hebrew sabbath was kept but as it became increasingly Gentile the first day gradually took the place of the seventh day” .
Notice that Hurlbut says the first day “gradually” replaced the seventh-day Sabbath. Did God gradually do away with His law? Ridiculous! As we shall see later, conniving me “gradually” DECEIVED millions of professing Christians into doing away with not only the Sabbath, but the entire concept of obedience to God’s law!
However, no such change took place during the lifetime of Christ’s original Apostles. Even the Apostle Paul-the Apostle to the Gentiles-kept the Sabbath regularly. And he wasn’t even converted to Christianity until well after Christ’s resurrection. Notice the account of Paul and Barnabas in Acts 13:14: “But when they departed from Perga, they came to Antioch in Pisidia, and went into the synagogue on the Sabbath day and sat down.”
We do NOT!
Sunday And Roman Sun God Worship
The early Christian Church, which started in Jerusalem, prospered and spread to Asia Minor near Israel, to Macedonia and even to Rome. In this process, there was something inevitablethat was a conflict with the Roman religion.
The Roman imperial family abhorred the Jews who believed in Judaism. The Romans believed in many different gods, and from their polytheistic view of religion, it was hard to understand the Jews who believed in the one and only GodJehovah, and the Jews were reluctant to follow the Roman orders using their religion as an excuse.
To the Romans, Christianity seemed to be a sect of Judaism because it was also a monotheistic religion Christians believed in Jesus as the Savior, and kept the seventh day as the Sabbath just as the Jews did. So, the people of the Church in Rome were unable to avoid persecution from the Romans, and they made efforts to inform them of the difference between Christianity and Judaism. In this process, they came to accept Sunday, which the Romans observed, as the day of worship.
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The Origins Of Sabbath
Before we answer that question, lets take a quick look at the idea of Sabbath rest in the Hebrew Scriptures . There are two main Hebrew words used for rest in the Bible. The first is shabbat, which gets partially translated into the English word sabbath. This word for rest simply means to stop working. Think of an hourly job where you clock out at the end of a shift. The work is done theres no more until you clock back in.
The other main Hebrew word for rest used in the Hebrew Scriptures is nuakh. This means to dwell or settle. This is not the same as clocking out from an hourly job. This type of rest is like sitting in front of a fire with a loved one or unpacking a suitcase to stay at grandmas house for the holidays. Its essentially about being restfully present.
God sets up shabbat and nuakh right around the same time. In the Bibles account of creation, God works for six days creating the world and rests on the seventh day . After six days of bringing order to chaos, now it is time to shabbat from this work. Only a few verses later, we read that God creates humans and then immediately rests them or settles them with himself in the garden of Eden . It seems like the ideas of shabbat and nuakh are meant to work together. God leads by example as he rests from work and then dwells together with his people. How will the rest of the story go?
Some Common Questions Raised By Those Who Believe In The Eternal Torment Of The Wicked Answered
What about the expressions “eternal” and “everlasting” which are used to describe the fires of hell? there is absolutely no confusion or contradiction when we allow the Bible to supply its own definition of terms. Many make the error of applying modern definitions to those biblical words without reference to their ancient contextual usage. This violates one of the most fundamental rules of interpretation. The fact is that eternal fire does not mean a fire that will never go out. The same expression is used in Jude 7 concerning the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrha. “Even as Sodom and Gomorrha, and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication and going after strange flesh, are set forth as an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire.” It is quite obvious that Sodom is not still burning today. The Dead Sea rolls over the place where those ancient cities once stood.
Perhaps the most easily misconstrued text about hell is John’s allusion to the smoke ascending “for ever and ever.” For those who are unfamiliar with other uses of this phrase in the Bible, it can be very confusing indeed. But a comparison of the verses in both Old and New Testaments reveal the words “for ever” are used 57 times in the Bible in reference to something that has already come to an end. In other words, “for ever” does not always mean “without end.” View Jonah 2:6, 1 Samuel 1:22 and Exodus 21:6 for a few examples of this.
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Is It Wrong To Go To Church On Sunday
Knowing that some worship the Lord on Saturday instead of Sunday can leave some Christians befuddled.
And thats okay. Its perfectly normal to be concerned about whether or not you are doing the right thing in Christs eyes.
That said, some may fear that it is wrong to attend church on Sunday. But is it?
Lets take a look at what scripture says about worshipping on Sunday.
If we look at scripture, it is clear that there is no designated time slot for worshiping Christ.
In fact, many Bible verses proclaim that worship should be done every day, day, and night.
For example, in the Old Testament 1 Chronicles 16:23 says, Sing to the Lord, all the earth! Tell of his salvation from day to day.
Another great example is found in the New Testament, where it is written:
And the four living creatures, each of them with six wings, are full of eyes all around and within, and day and night they never cease to say, Holy, holy, holy, is the Lord God Almighty, who was and is and is to come!
We see scripture come into play once more by reading Colossians 2:16.
It states explicitly to not let anyone condemn you for what you eat or drink.
It states that nobody should ever be condemned for the day they worship Christ, either.
Therefore let no one pass judgment on you in questions of food and drink, or with regard to a festival or a new moon or a Sabbath.
That said, is it wrong to go to church on Sunday? Certainly not.
The Sabbath law was never the way to salvation.
No Biblical Authorization To Change The Sabbath To Sunday
How did Sunday become the primary day of rest and worship? Although the concept of rest has largely disappeared, most churches continue to hold their worship services on Sunday. You can search throughout the Bible, but you will find no authority to alter the day of worship.
James Cardinal Gibbons, Catholic educator and archbishop of Baltimore in the late 1800s and early 1900s, was blunt about the change:
“You may read the Bible from Genesis to Revelation, and you will not find a single line authorizing the sanctification of Sunday. The Scriptures enforce the religious observance of Saturday, a day which we never sanctify. The Catholic Church correctly teaches that our Lord and His Apostles inculcated certain important duties of religion which are not recorded by the inspired writers…We must, therefore, conclude that the Scriptures alone cannot be a sufficient guide and rule of faith” .
Did you catch that? The writer admits that Sunday observance is nowhere authorized in the Bible and that the seventh day is the only day sanctified by the Scriptures. His justification for changing the day of rest and worship assumes that authority exists apart from the Bible to define the necessary truths and practices for salvation.
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Sunday In The New Testament
The word “Sunday” does not even appear in literal Bible translations. We do find the phrase “first day of the week” in the New Testament, but this occurs just eight times. Five of those references describe Mary Magdalene and others coming to the tomb AFTER Christ’s resurrection. As we prove elsewhere in this booklet, Jesus was resurrected Saturday eveningNOT Sunday morning. So those references have nothing to do with observing the day of Christ’s resurrection!
In John 20:19, we read that on “the first day of the week, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled, for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood in the midst and said to them, ‘Peace be with you.'” This was not a worship meeting celebrating the resurrection Scripture tells us that until they saw Him, they did not believe that Christ was risen! .
But even if this were talking about a day of the week, which day would it be? Remember what Jesus said: “The Son of Man is Lord of the Sabbath” . Also, the preincarnate Christ called the Sabbath “My holy day… the holy day of the Lord” . And in the fourth commandment, He said, “The seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord your God” . Obviously, then, the seventh-day Sabbath is not our day. It iswithout questionthe Lord’s day! Weekly Sunday observance, therefore, has absolutely no biblical foundation.
The Sabbath In The New Testament
1. ACCORDING to the New Testament, what day immediately precedes the first day of the week?In the end of the Sabbath, as it began to dawn toward the first day of the week. Matt. 28:1.
NOTE.-According to the New Testament, therefore, the Sabbath had passed when the first day of the week began.
2. After the crucifixion, what day was kept by the women who followed Jesus?And they returned, and prepared spices and ointments and rested the Sabbath day according to the commandment. Luke 23:56.
3. What day is the Sabbath, according to the commandment?But the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord thy God. Ex. 20:10.
4. What was Christs custom respecting the Sabbath?And He came to Nazareth, where He had been brought up: and, as His custom was, He went into the synagogue on the Sabbath day, and stood up for to read. Luke 4:16.
5. In what instruction to His disciples did Christ recognize the existence of the Sabbath long after His ascension?But pray ye that your flight be not in the winter, neither on the Sabbath day. Matt. 24:20.
NOTE.-The destruction of Jerusalem under Titus occurred in the spring and summer of 70 A.D. The flight of the Christians took place three and one-half years earlier, or late in October, 66 A. D., following the arrival and sudden withdrawal of Cestius and his army. See readings in Chapter 68. of this book.
NOTE.-It was Pauls manner, as it was Christs custom , to attend religious services on the Sabbath.
The Law of God
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Which Day Is The Christian Sabbath Since Most Churches Observe Sunday As Their Day Of Rest And Worship Many People Assume That Sunday Is The Sabbath Is It And How Do Christians Observe The Biblical Sabbath Day
One of the Ten Commandments states: “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord your God. In it you shall do no work” .
There is no biblical authority for changing the day of rest and worship from the seventh-day Sabbath to Sunday.
God commanded that the seventh day be observed as the Sabbath. A glance at almost any dictionary or encyclopedia will show you that Saturday is the seventh day of the week, while Sunday is the first day of the week. The seventh day according to God’s calendar isand always has beenthe Sabbath day. Although man has modified calendars through the centuries, the seven-day weekly cycle has remained intact throughout history. The days of the week have always remained in their proper order, with Sunday as the first day of the week and Saturday as the seventh.
“The oracles of God”His divine words and instructions recorded in the Holy Scriptures including the Commandmentswere entrusted to the Jewish people , and they have preserved the knowledge of the seventh-day Sabbath faithfully since well before Christ’s time to this day.
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We should observe the seventh day of the week , from even to even, as the Sabbath of the Lord our God. Evening is at sunset when day ends and another day begins. No other day has ever been sanctified as the day of rest. The Sabbath Day begins at sundown on Friday and ends at sundown on Saturday.
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Jesus Kept The Same Sabbath The Rest Of The Jews Kept
The Sabbath played a prominent role in the life and ministry of Jesus Christ. The religious leaders disagreed with how He observed the Sabbath, but never when He kept it.The Sabbath played a prominent role in the life and ministry of Jesus Christ. The religious leaders disagreed with how He observed the Sabbath, but never when He kept it. He remembered the same Sabbath that they did.
In fact, Jesus said the scribes and Pharisees sat in Moses seat, and He told people to do what they said: Therefore whatever they tell you to observe, that observe and do, but do not do according to their works for they say, and do not do. For they bind heavy burdens, hard to bear, and lay them on mens shoulders but they themselves will not move them with one of their fingers .
Jesus chided the Pharisees for the extra regulations they added to the Sabbath, but not for when they kept it.
The apostle Paul noted that to the Jews had been committed the oracles of God . Again, there is no mention of the New Testament Church of God keeping the Sabbath at a different time from the Jews.