Christian Sabbath?

The big question for the Sabbath is whether in the New Testament a commandment to keep the Sabbath day holy, is the same it was commanded in the Old Testament.  Do we, as enlightened new covenant Christians, be constrained in the same manner and constricted like the Hebrews.

Remember, if you will, if we say yes to this conformity, then the same punishment is also attached.  The Hebrew law for Sabbath keeping states you could be killed for carrying sticks on the sabbath day.

Let’s ignore the issue of which day is the sabbath, we can address that some other day.  That issue need not be addressed here because we have to understand the requirements of sabbath and their relevance to us before setting a time and place.

In Romans 14 we are admonished not to quarrel and accept those whose faith is weak. But it goes on to speak to the sabbath issue in verse 5:  “One person considers one day more sacred than another; another considers every day alike.  Each of them should be fully convinced in their own mind.”  Please notice this is not an indictment of those who keep one day holy and another as secular or unholy.  The argument is the keeping a day holy when they all should be kept as holy.  So what Paul was saying in Romans was that every day is to be holy AND one day is special.  Holiness of the Sabbath is a good thing AND Holiness of every day is even better.

Paul did not take a side.  He simply said, “Let both honor God.”  Keeping the sabbath is making it special. For the Christian, the sabbath should be holy, like every other day. Where we get confused is the special part.

How do we make one day special?  This special day, in my opinion, is the day I STOP.  That is what SHABOTH in Hebrew means.  Stop and set a day and “BE STILL and KNOW THAT I AM GOD.”  My sabbath is that day of the week that I set aside to first, STOP my usual life, second WORSHIP, third to FELLOWSHIP with fellow believers. It is a day of POINTED REST.  It is a day when I express my “I LOVE YOU GOD”, “I COUNT YOU MY LORD”, “I AM YOURS IN WHAT EVER HAPPENS.” That is the rest meant for the Israelites in the wilderness. That was the rest for the Hebrews in Canaan. That is the rest that Jesus talked about in Matthew 11:28,29

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