A Sabbath Day to Remember

Sunday, September 18, 2011

“Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy” (Exodus 20:8 KJV).

For 2,500 years (Adam to Moses), no one kept the Sabbath day in Scripture. But, according to today’s Scripture, in the Mosaic Law, God commands Israel to keep the Sabbath holy (Exodus 20:8-11; Deuteronomy 5:12-15). Why Sabbath day keeping?

On the Saturday Sabbath, God commanded Israel to remember His purpose in creation, and His purpose in creating them. Every Sabbath, Jews memorized Scripture and meditated on God’s Word, recalling that God would use them to accomplish His will in the earth (Exodus 31:13-18). God would make Israel a “kingdom of priests” so the Jews could evangelize the world (Exodus 19:3-6; cf. Isaiah 61:6).

According to Matthew 25:34, God originally had that kingdom in mind during the creation week. The Sabbath is first mentioned immediately after the six days of creation (Genesis 2:1-3). God would have set up His kingdom in the earth back in Genesis, but Adam rebelled, sin entered, and God’s whole plan was interrupted. That kingdom (the millennial reign of Christ) is still postponed, 6,000 years later!

That Sabbath day was a day of rest: Jews were not to do any work on Saturday. In the Bible, Psalm 132:8,13,14, the LORD says He wants Zion (Jerusalem) for His rest,” His “habitation” (dwelling-place, house!). God wanted to dwell on earth. Remember “Emmanuel” (Isaiah 7:14; Matthew 1:23)—“God with us?” Jesus Christ “became flesh, and dwelt among us” (John 1:14). Christ came to Israel to be her King, to fulfill what the Sabbath day typified (shadowed, predicted). God demanded Israel keep the Sabbath holy to remind them weekly of that coming earthly kingdom.

By the way, as members of the Church the Body of Christ, we have no relation to Israel’s kingdom. Consequently, we have no Sabbath day to keep in this the Dispensation of Grace. Our Apostle Paul says that we are not bound to keep the Sabbath day (Colossians 2:16). Actually, Paul was “afraid of” the Galatian believers, who had abandoned God’s grace, preferring Mosaic Law-keeping and Sabbath day-keeping (Galatians 4:9-11).

Thou That Judgest Doest the Same Things

Friday, August 26, 2011

“Therefore thou are inexcusable, O man, whosoever thou art that judgest: for wherein thou judgest another, thou condemnest thyself; for thou that judgest doest the same things” (Romans 2:1 KJV).

For over 1500 years, the nation Israel was under the Mosaic Law. Israel knew exactly what God demanded: “Behold, thou are called a Jew, and restest in the law, and makest thy boast of God, and knowest his will, and approvest the things that are more excellent, being instructed out of the law;…” (Romans 2:17,18).

During that period of time, Israel was arrogant toward the Gentiles (non-Jews). In the Jews’ minds, Gentiles were godless sinners, foolish pagans who ate disgusting foods and worshipped wooden and stone idols. Yet, in reality, the Jews were hypocrites, just as sinful because they were guilty of worshipping those same silly idols throughout the Bible (Exodus 32:1-10; Jeremiah 44:15-19; Hosea 4:1-19; Acts 7:39-43; et al.)!

“For the name of God is blasphemed among the Gentiles through you [Israel], as it is written” (Romans 2:24). The Gentiles would speak evil of God when they saw Israel’s wickedness, so Jews could never claim to be less sinful than Gentiles. “What then? are we [Jews] better than they [Gentiles]? No, in no wise: for we have before proved both Jews and Gentiles, that they are all under sin;” (Romans 3:9).

The Pharisees and Sadducees of Christ’s day referred to “publicans and sinners” (Matthew 9:11 et al.), yet Jesus called these religious leaders “hypocrites” (Matthew 15:7 et al.). Whether priests, presidents, potentates, professors, pastors, peasants, princes, paupers, or popes, all are under sin. Jews and Gentiles are all under sin. We are all inexcusable because the Law condemns us all (Romans 3:19,20).

May we never get the self-righteous, pharisaical attitude. “Wherefore let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall” (1 Corinthians 10:12). We all have the potential to commit every sin of the flesh, so never say, “I would not do what they did….”

Jesus Christ did not die to save the worst of us; He died to save all of us.

Using the Law Lawfully

Saturday, July 30, 2011

“But we know that the law is good, if a man use it lawfully;” (1 Timothy 1:8 KJV).

In this the Dispensation of Grace, how does a man use the Mosaic Law “lawfully?” Paul continues in verses 9 and 10: “…the law is not made for a righteous man, but for the lawless and disobedient, for the ungodly and for sinners, for unholy and profane, for murderers of fathers and murderers of mothers, for manslayers, for whoremongers, for them that defile themselves with mankind, for menstealers, for liars, for perjured persons, and if there be any other thing that is contrary to sound doctrine;”

The function of the Mosaic Law is to show us we cannot measure up to God’s standard of righteousness (rightness). Galatians 2:16 says, “Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the law shall no flesh be justified.”

God’s Word says in Romans 3:19,20: “Now we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God. Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin.”

Galatians 3:24,25 says, “Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith. But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster.”

Using the Law lawfully in this the Dispensation of Grace means to recognize our sinfulness and Jesus Christ’s sinlessness. The Mosaic Law shows us that we cannot be justified (made right before God) through our works. It points us to the righteousness of the Lord Jesus Christ. The Law points us to salvation in Jesus Christ and His fulfilling the Law perfectly.

Do you use the Law lawfully?