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What About The Sabbath?

Summary: We have to remember that keeping the Sabbath still is the 4th commandment in the 10 Commandments. However, Paul modified its "legal" strictness for the gentiles. And Jesus, although stressed many aspects of how to be true Christians, never mentioned the Sabbath as key. In fact, Jesus spoke against the supper-strict-Sabbath on many occasions.

The New Testament verses below confirm that the "legal strictness" aspect of "THE Sabbath" has been removed by the cross. 

Only the "legal strictness" of it was removed. It is still the 4th commandment of God.

In the same way many old-covenant "ceremonial" commandments of God became fulfilled by Jesus' sacrifice on the cross, the absolute strictness aspect of observing "The Sabbath", also became fulfilled according to Paul. Paul called it "the charge of our legal indebtedness" was canceled.

Colossians 2:14-16

Paul: Having canceled the charge of our legal indebtedness, which stood against us and condemned us; he has taken it away, nailing it to the cross. And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross. Therefore do not let anyone judge you by what you eat or drink, or with regard to a religious festival, a New Moon celebration or a Sabbath day.

Notes: Paul said: "Do not let anyone judge you by ... a Sabbath day". Which is exactly what some churches and dedicated Sabbath internet articles today are doing - judging people about the Sabbath. Jesus specifically stressed and overstressed many things repeatedly in the New Testament, but did not mention the Sabbath, except to rebuke those who tried to enforce it. So why are there people still going there today?

But not to completely abolish the 4th commandment of honoring the day of the Lord! or sweep it to the side as only applicable to the Jews! Let's examine the 4th commandment closely.

Exodus 20:8-11

Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is a sabbath to the Lord your God. On it you shall not do any work, neither you, nor your son or daughter, nor your male or female servant, nor your animals, nor any foreigner residing in your towns. For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, but he rested on the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy.

The "legal" aspect of it was meant for the Jews in the old covenant law.  But honoring the day of Lord is still our Christian commandment. The emphasis in the commandment was on working 6 days and resting the 7th day. Choosing Sunday as the "resting and honoring God" day, may be ceremonially against the commandment but not against it in the Christ-fulfilled new covenant. And that is what Paul was saying. Although Paul did not say Sunday, he did mean honoring God any day of the week is acceptable. Sunday is the day Jesus rose from the dead. So, Sunday was a good choice for Christians who are former gentiles even though the Bible did not exclusively state it. What Paul was also saying was, if your ancestors are Jews, then yes by all means you go ahead and observe Saturday as the Sabbath, but without judging others who are not doing it your way.

This is another one of those cases where our attitude as Christians is key. If we set out to abolish this commandment, or limit it to the Jews, is the wrong attitude. But seeing the commandment as, we should be honoring God one day of the week, is the right attitude. But not as some churches stress the strictness of it.

Another observation from the New Testament, Jesus had so many parables, a thorough sermon on the mount, and stressed so many points like mature spiritually, seek God always, the Lord’s Prayer, forgive others so God forgives you, etc. But never once stressed the Sabbath. In fact not only did He not stress it, in so many parts of the Bible He rebuked those that made a big deal of it. So why are there Christians out there today taking us in the wrong direction, stressing the wrong things that Jesus Himself did not enforce?

 

To those Sabbath policers and enforcers today, I say shift your focus and efforts to the more crucial side of Jesus' Christianity. There are so many Bible truths people should know about but don't, because of the misleading teachings of churches.

See my page on How to Be True Christians

I noticed that some Christians in certain parts of the world make a very big deal about observing the Sabbath, more than any other Christians. It is good to teach all of the 10 commandments. But we should always remember that if we miss any of them (except the 1st one of course), we repent, humble ourselves, and ask God for forgiveness as we do in the daily Lord's Prayer. So, for those Sabbath-enforcers, no need to judge and destroy someone specifically because they're not keeping the Sabbath, while they and all of us are equally sinners against the rest of the 10 commandments.

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