Question:

Howdy,

I came across your web site recently and have enjoyed reading the information about different subjects. I do have a question concerning the Lord's Sabbath.

Is the Sabbath that Jesus sanctified in Genesis 2:3, referred to as 'My holy day in Isaiah 58:13, and of which He said he was Lord of in Mark 2:27-28 still holy and set apart? A simple ' yes' or' no' is all I need.

Respectfully,

Answer:

A lawyer's type of question! You express a complex question containing many parts with a hidden catch buried inside and then ask for a simple "yes" or "no" response. Sorry, but I don't play games like that.

Yes, the day of worship under the Law of Moses was placed on the seventh day of the week because that was the day God rested from His creation.

"Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is a sabbath of the LORD your God; in it you shall not do any work, you or your son or your daughter, your male or your female servant or your cattle or your sojourner who stays with you. For in six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth, the sea and all that is in them, and rested on the seventh day; therefore the LORD blessed the sabbath day and made it holy" (Exodus 20:9-11).

It made an appropriate day for a society that once was slaves to rest from their work on the day they honored the God who freed them.

"Observe the sabbath day to keep it holy, as the LORD your God commanded you. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is a sabbath of the LORD your God; in it you shall not do any work, you or your son or your daughter or your male servant or your female servant or your ox or your donkey or any of your cattle or your sojourner who stays with you, so that your male servant and your female servant may rest as well as you.  You shall remember that you were a slave in the land of Egypt, and the LORD your God brought you out of there by a mighty hand and by an outstretched arm; therefore the LORD your God commanded you to observe the sabbath day" (Deuteronomy 5:12-15).

Because this was the day of worship under the Old Law, it was a holy day. "If because of the sabbath, you turn your foot from doing your own pleasure on My holy day, and call the sabbath a delight, the holy day of the LORD honorable, and honor it, desisting from your own ways, from seeking your own pleasure And speaking your own word, then you will take delight in the LORD, and I will make you ride on the heights of the earth; and I will feed you with the heritage of Jacob your father, for the mouth of the LORD has spoken" (Isaiah 58:13-14). God told the Israelites that if they treated the day as special then God would allow them to have the inheritance of the land as promised to Jacob. It was their lack of respect for the worship of God that caused the Israelites to be sent off into captivity.

When the Jews accused Jesus' disciples of breaking the Sabbath laws, Jesus stated as his final point that the Sabbath was established originally by his authority. Implied is that he would know if the Sabbath rules he established were being violated. "And it happened that He was passing through the grainfields on the Sabbath, and His disciples began to make their way along while picking the heads of grain. The Pharisees were saying to Him, 'Look, why are they doing what is not lawful on the Sabbath?' And He said to them, 'Have you never read what David did when he was in need and he and his companions became hungry; how he entered the house of God in the time of Abiathar the high priest, and ate the consecrated bread, which is not lawful for anyone to eat except the priests, and he also gave it to those who were with him?' Jesus said to them, 'The Sabbath was made for man, and not man for the Sabbath. So the Son of Man is Lord even of the Sabbath'" (Mark 2:23-27).

The catch in your question is whether the Sabbath is still holy and set apart. Here the answer is "no" because we are not under the Law of Moses but under the Law of Christ and the Sabbath is not the day of worship for Christians. "Therefore no one is to act as your judge in regard to food or drink or in respect to a festival or a new moon or a Sabbath day -- things which are a mere shadow of what is to come; but the substance belongs to Christ" (Colossians 2:16-17).

Sections of your question are true and sections are false; yet, you tried to lay a trap by asking for only a single agreement or denial. That, my friend, is not the way some seeking the truth should behave.

Question:

Jeffrey,
I am very sorry my question was catchy. I did not mean it that way. Let's put it this way, Is the day that Jesus sanctified in Genesis 2:3 still sanctified? Again, I am very sorry for the way I worded the question.

Respectfully,

P.S. Forget the Old Law, Ten Commandments, etc.

Answer:

Genesis is the first book of the Old Law, You cannot pull a piece out and say it still applies without some indication in the New Law that it remains applicable. "It was for freedom that Christ set us free; therefore keep standing firm and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery. Behold I, Paul, say to you that if you receive circumcision, Christ will be of no benefit to you. And I testify again to every man who receives circumcision, that he is under obligation to keep the whole Law. You have been severed from Christ, you who are seeking to be justified by law; you have fallen from grace" (Galatians 5:1-4). Thought the application here is circumcision, the point remains the same. If you apply one part of the Old Law, you have to apply it all -- but that places back under a law that no one was able to keep.

In the case of the Sabbath, Paul made it clear that under the New Law, the Sabbath no longer has a special meaning (Colossians 2:16-17), just as dietary restrictions and the special festivals are no longer binding.

The seventh day was blessed by God and made holy (Genesis 2:3). But God gave no rules for men to follow regarding the Sabbath until the Law was given to the Israelites. That law was unique to Israel only. Thus, while the Sabbath remains blessed by God, He did not give Christians rules for treating the weekly seventh day in any special way. Instead, Christians are told to look forward to entering the final rest (heaven).

"Therefore, let us fear if, while a promise remains of entering His rest, any one of you may seem to have come short of it. For indeed we have had good news preached to us, just as they also; but the word they heard did not profit them, because it was not united by faith in those who heard. For we who have believed enter that rest, just as He has said, "As I swore in My wrath, they shall not enter My rest," although His works were finished from the foundation of the world. For He has said somewhere concerning the seventh day: "And God rested on the seventh day from all His works"; and again in this passage, "They shall not enter My rest." Therefore, since it remains for some to enter it, and those who formerly had good news preached to them failed to enter because of disobedience, He again fixes a certain day, "Today," saying through David after so long a time just as has been said before, "Today if you hear His voice, do not harden you hearts." For if Joshua had given them rest, He would not have spoken of another day after that. So there remains a Sabbath rest for the people of God. For the one who has entered His rest has himself also rested from his works, as God did from His. Therefore let us be diligent to enter that rest, so that no one will fall, through following the same example of disobedience" (Hebrews 4:1-11).

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