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Brother Love
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« on: September 18, 2004, 04:12:23 PM »

IS SATURDAY THE CHRISTIAN SABBATH?

By Chas. F. Baker

We know that Saturday was the Jewish Sabbath, being the last day of the week; but is it the Christian Sabbath? Some believe that the Emperor Constantine changed the sabbath from Saturday to Sunday, but that Gods command is still to keep Saturday. Others believe that Christ changed the Sabbath from Saturday to Sunday; therefore we should observe Sunday. Neither of these suppositions is correct. God never changed the sabbath from Saturday to another day. Neither did He give a sabbath day to the Body of Christ to keep. When professing Christians either continued, or began keeping, sabbath days, it was an indication to Paul that they had never under-stood the grace of God and that his labour had been in vain upon them. Listen to his words:

"Ye observe days,I am afraid for you, lest I have bestowed upon you labour in vain." (Gal. 4:10-11).

"Let no man judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of an holy day, or of the new moon, or of the sabbath days: which are a shadow of things to come; but the body is of Christ." (Col. 2:16-17.)

A few years before Paul wrote these words, he could have been lawfully stoned to death for such teaching; for according to the law of Moses, a man was to be judged for these very things. But Christ had died and had become the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth (Rom. 10:4). Some try to argue that Christ became the end only of the ceremonial law, but that the sabbath along with the other nine commandments is still in effect. This is refuted by the Bible in several ways. First, the Apostle classes "sabbath keeping" with the other ceremonies which were shadows of good things to come, and emphatically denounces the keeping of the legal sabbath. Secondly, although some contend that the sabbath was given to Adam 2500 years before Moses and was therefore not a part of the law, the Bible makes it plain from Exodus 16:29; Ezekiel 20:12: and Nehemiah 9:10-12 that it was not given for man to keep until the law was given to Moses, and hence was one of those things written upon tables of stone which was "done away", "abolished" (II Corinthians 3:7-12). It is plainly stated in Exodus 31 that the sabbath was a sign between Jehovah and the children of Israel (verses 12 to 17). Thirdly, the teaching of Paul as to how the law was put aside is most conclusive. God put the law aside by causing it to judge us, condemn us, and put us to death in the person of a Substitute; so that we "are become dead to the law by the body of Christ," and "the law hath dominion over a man (only) as long as he liveth" (Rom. 7:1-4). It is because we died to the world of sin and of religious practices that we are no longer to be judged by such things (see Colossians 2:20; Galatians 2:20; etc.). The believer is dead, buried and risen with Christ. The sabbath was buried with Christ: Read Colossians 2:14

No one ever enjoyed the true sabbath rest by keeping of a day (Hebrews 4:4-11); for all who do such are working to keep the sabbath day; but it is necessary to cease from all our works, as God did, to have real rest. The sabbath days were a shadow of Christ. He has done all the work, so that we now find our rest in Him. He is our Sabbath. We can now come unto Him and rest. He died under the Law and was in the grave on the sabbath. He arose the Head of a new creation on the first day of the week, and it is for that reason that we, as members of that new creation, meet upon that day to preach the Word. (Acts 20:6, 7; I Corinthians 16:2; etc.).


by Charles F. Baker, Bible Study for Bereans, May 1937

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