Is the Sabbath a sign of the old covenant?


Clarify Share Report Asked June 20 2016 Mini Anonymous

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Data Imelda Douangdara
My belief and understanding is that God's Law is immutable. Therefore His Law regarding the Sabbath is also immutable. The fourth commandment in Exodus 20:8-11states the unchanging validity of keeping the Sabbath when God declared "Remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy....But the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord thy God..." Also, even after the death of Jesus, His apostles and disciples continued to keep the Sabbath observance, as in Acts 13:14,42,44; 16:13; 17:2; 18:4. The Lord said also that in the new earth Sabbath will still be observed, Isaiah 66:22,23.

January 12 2017 0 responses Vote Up Share Report

Mini Tim Maas Retired Quality Assurance Specialist with the U.S. Army
As I understand it, some Christians observe a seventh-day Sabbath on the basis of Jesus Himself having observed it, and also because He gave no personal indication in the gospels that His coming somehow changed it (as with other commandments, for example, where He elaborated on their meaning (and, in fact, actually made them more stringent), as in the Sermon on the Mount). ("You have heard that it was said...but I say to you....")

On the other hand, until Jesus died and was raised again, this would have been expected, since the purpose for which Jesus had been incarnated (living a life of perfect obedience to the Law, and then dying and rising again as an atonement for humanity's sin) had not yet been fulfilled. 

Paul was more specific in addressing this question in his writings -- especially since he was ministering primarily to Gentiles, who would have had no experience with the seventh-day Sabbath as it was observed in Judaism (as well as with other Jewish practices such as circumcision), and would perhaps have been more inclined to regard the day of the week on which Jesus rose from the dead as meriting special observance. 

Paul wrote in Colossians 2:16-17, "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. These are a shadow of the things that were to come; the reality, however, is found in Christ." To me, this is the definitive guidance for Christians, and indicates that this is a matter on which Christians can disagree, and is not a basis for viewing any individual as being (or not being) a "true Christian".

However, Paul's words would still indicate to me that the purpose of designating one day out of the week as a day of rest, and as a day for corporate worship, is still valid, although observance of it for a Christian would not include the extensive and strict regulations pertaining to it -- as well as the severe penalties for non-observance of those regulations -- that were contained in the Law.

June 21 2016 0 responses Vote Up Share Report

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