CHAPTER VIII

4TH  COMMANDMENTS

“Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy.  Six days shall thou labor, and do all thy work: But the Seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord thy God: in it thou shall not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within Thy gates:
For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day, and hallowed it.”
 
 

SATURDAY IS THE LORD’S DAY

Last night I had a very animated conversation with a friend whom I shall call Tim.   (Not his real name.)

Tim:  Hi Clelia!  What are you doing?

Me:   I was writing a story for my book before you called, but now I am talking to you.

Tim:  What is the story about?

Me:   I was really meditating more than writing, because this is a real tough subject. I  am writing about the Sabbath.

Tim:   Oh!  Did you have a chance to check on those texts I gave to you in the church yesterday?

Me:   Yes, I did.  That is exactly why I was meditating.  You told me that all the commandments were “amplified” including the Sabbath, and you gave me all those texts.

Tim:   Yes!  All the commandments were amplified by Christ, including the Sabbath.  Actually, it was amplified even before Christ came down to the earth.  Get your Bible and I will show it to you.

Me:     OK, I got my Bible.

Tim:    Read on Isaiah 28:11,12.  I will read it to you:

 "For with stammering lips and another tongue will he speak to this people; to whom he said, This is the rest wherewith ye may cause the weary to rest; and this is the refreshing: yet they would not hear.”

Me:   What are you talking about?  I don’t see the Sabbath amplified in these verses?

Tim:   Clelia, open your Bible on Hebrews 4:1-4.  I will read it again:

“Let us therefore fear, lest, a promise being left us of entering into His rest, any of you should seem to come short of it. For we who have believed do enter into rest, as He said, As I have sworn in my wrath, if they shall enter into my rest: although the works were finished from the foundation of the world.For He spake in a certain place of the seventh day on this wise, and God did rest in the seventh day from all His  works.”

Tim:   See what it means?  This is the rest of God; it is no longer a 24 hour period, but an amplified rest that will last the rest of our lives.  You don't need to separate one day from another.  It does not matter anymore what day you rest, because the REST is forever, not just 24 hours once a week, but all the time of our lives.  See, it is right here in the Bible.

Me:    Tim, I did not hear anywhere on your reading that said that the 24 hour period of the Holy Sabbath, or Saturday, which is the seventh day of the week established by God from the creation of the world, has been done away with.   You don't read that anywhere.  Why did you stop at verse 4?  Let us continue reading up to verse eight.  I will read it this time:

8: “And in this place again, If they shall enter into my rest. Seeing therefore it remaineth that some must enter therein, and they to whom it was first preached entered not in because of unbelief: Again, he limiteth a certain day, saying in David, Today, after so long a time; as it is said, Today if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts. For if Jesus had given them rest, then wouldhe not afterward have spoken of another day?”

I believe that Paul is telling that some are not resting yet because they don’t believe. Did you notice that he said, “he limiteth a certain day?  That is not amplifying, on the contrary, it is limiting to a day.  A day is a 24 hour period.  You cannot change that.  Notice what he says in Matthew 5:18 that you cannot, add, or change the law, Every word of God is a law.  To do away with the Sabbath is to change the fourth commandment.  Here is Matthew 5:18:

“For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one JOT or one TITTLE shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled.”

          You said that the Bible amplified the commandments, yet you cannot show it to me in the Bible; you are really adding to the scriptures something that is not there.  Do you know how little is a JOT?
According to Webster a JOT is a very small quantity, and a TITTLE is even smaller than the JOT.   A TITTLE is a very small mark, a dot, and a particle.  If we cannot change the law even by a tittle, how could you amplify the law, which is the same as to do away with the law?

Tim:    You don’t understand me at all.  I did not say that we should not observe the seventh day; all I said was that now it is no longer just 24 hours, but a lifetime of God’s rest.  You enter in God’s rest and you are always sanctified.  That does not limit you to just one day, but every day.  What about Colossians 2: 16?  I will read it:

 “Let no man therefore judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of an holiday, or of the new moon, or of the Sabbath days:”

See what the Bible is saying here?  You cannot judge a person for what day he keeps, or what he eats or drinks. Oh!  I forgot to read verse 17.  In it you see these things are only shadows.

 Me:   Tim! Don’t you know that “Sabbath Days” has nothing to do with the Sabbath day? See the Sabbath days, that Paul is talking about are        Holidays, and is not referring to the holy Sabbath day the weekly Sabbath.
           I also noticed that you are very concerned with the shadows.  Do you know that without an object you cannot have a shadow?  You go out on a sunny day and stand outside.  You will see your shadow.  If you go inside, your shadow will disappear.   What I am saying is that without the thing there is no shadow.  God said that in verse 17.  Well let me read it:

 “Which are a shadow of things to come; but the body is of Christ.”

This is referring to Christ’s death. All the sacrificial laws were a shadow of the real sacrifice, the Lamb of God that died for our sins.
By the way, how could we amplify the Sabbath, when even in the new earth we will keep it Holy? Open you Bible to Isaiah 66:22,23.  I will read it:
“For as the new heavens and the new earth, which I will make, shall remain before me, saith the Lord, so shall your seed and your name remain.  And it shall come to pass, that from one new moon to another, and from one Sabbath to another shall all flesh come to worship before me, saith the Lord.”

See Tim, we are going to keep the Sabbath holy even in the new earth.  God does not change, if He told us to keep the Sabbath holy in the days of Abraham, He is not going to tell us now that we have an eternal rest.  In the same commandment He orders us to work for six days, and only rest on the seventh.  Do you think that God would change His own laws?
And if we are going to rest all the time, when do we do our work. Then we will not work anymore, is that what you are saying?

Tim:   I did not say that God changed His laws, on the contrary, I said that He amplified the law.  Before Christ came down to the earth, the commandment said not to commit adultery.  Jesus on the other hand said that if a man looks on a woman and desires her, he is committing adultery with her already in his heart.  That is amplifying the law.  The same way with the Sabbath, it is not just 24 hours, but all the time.

Me:   Tim! That is not something new, or amplifying the law. Job allready new that to look at another women it was a sin. Job 31:1
"I made a covenant with my eyes not to look lustfully at a girl." How did Job new that to look at a girl lustfully was a sin if he didn't no the 7th commandment?

Well, if the Sabbath is every day, then it is not different than the other days, is it?  Then can you go do your shopping on the Sabbath?”

Tim:    Yes!  if I want to.

Me:    I know that you are a member in our church, but, are you a Seventh day Adventist?

Tim:    I am a member of that church, but I am not a Seventh day Adventist, or any other denomination.  See, I don’t believe in this thing of having a denomination.  I am a Christian, a follower of Christ.

 I don’t think that denomination is a Biblical thing, so I just don’t follow any denomination.  I want to explain more to you about the Sabbath being amplified. Just read Mark 2:27,28:

 “And he said unto them, The Sabbath was made for man, and not man for the Sabbath: Therefore the Son of man is Lord also of the Sabbath.”

See, the Sabbath was made for man, and Jesus is Lord even of the Sabbath.  How do you like that?

Me:   You said that you were going to prove to me that Jesus amplified the Sabbath.  I didn’t hear a word about the Sabbath being amplified.

Here Jesus is really telling the scribes and pharisees that the Sabbath was made for man, and not man for the Sabbath.  It is like this: Last week I was very sick and I went to see a doctor.  The doctor gave me a medicine, and he told me to take the medicine because I was sick.  I took the medicine because the medicine was made for sick people, or me.  I was not made for the medicine.  The medicine was made for me.

            The Sabbath was made for man, because man needed the Sabbath, just like I needed the medicine.  The Sabbath does not need man, but man needs the Sabbath.  Do you understand me?  When we lived in Willow Springs, my husband and I built a house.  We were the Lords of that house, because it was our house and we built it.   Once I made a statue called Jardineira, which was 7 feet tall, when I am only 5’1, yet, I was the Lord of that statue because I made it. Jesus is the Lord of the Sabbath because He made the Sabbath.

Can you imagine the Pharisees trying to teach Jesus how to keep the Sabbath?  When Jesus was the Lord and maker of the Sabbath?  I like to compare that to your two years old son, trying to teach you how to build a house.

I asked you earlier if you could do your shopping on the Sabbath, and you said that if you wanted to, you would do it.  Of course for you there is no such a thing as a Sabbath, because your Sabbath has been amplified, and it is no longer, a period.  I could never believe that shopping on the Sabbath is acceptable, when even picking up a peace of Manna was not allowed on the Sabbath.  If God would not allow that, which is so little how could He accept shopping, that involves so much ?

          Tim did not answer my question.   We had prayer and that ended our conversation.  I wish I knew what to say to him that would convince him of the Sabbath, but that is really the work of the Holy Spirit.  Now, I know that Jesus explains almost all the commandments in Matthew 5, and perhaps that is what Tim calls amplifying. For example, He mentions the seventh commandment, and says that even if a man looks at a woman, and desires her; he is already committing adultery with her in his heart.

For me to think of a week without the celebration of the Sabbath would be a dead week.  The Sabbath to me is the heart of the week.  I go to school six days, and I cannot wait until Saturday to have a real change of pace, and go to church to meet my Lord.  I feel that Jesus comes to my house the whole week, but on Saturday, I go to His House.

Saturday is without a doubt the Holy day of the Lord.  It is a day to rest, examine our souls, make peace with our adversaries, and cleanse our hearts.

The Sabbath Day is a day of gladness and joy beyond compare, and is a day to visit the sick and the shut-ins.  A day to make new friends.  A day to be respected and bring home some guests, especially the needy.

For a person to know the joy of the Sabbath, he has to enter into this joy himself, because only through experiencing this joy you can enter in the joy of the Lord.  Nehemiah experienced this joy, for he said in Nehemiah 8:10, last part:  “For the joy of the Lord is your strength.”

King David said in Psalms 37:4 that if you delight in the Lord, He will give you the desires of your heart.  I asked myself what is to delight in the Lord?

God inspired me to read Isaiah 58:13,14 to find the answer to my question.  This is what it said: “If thou turn away thy foot from the Sabbath, from doing thy pleasure on my holy day; and call the Sabbath a delight, the holy of the Lord, honorable; and shall honor him, not doing thine own ways, nor finding thine own pleasure, nor speaking thine own words: Then shall thou delight thyself in the Lord”.

Then, He makes the same promises that king David mentions:

 “And I will cause thee to ride upon the high places of the earth, and feed thee with the heritage of Jacob thy father: For the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it”.

           Now, don’t you agree with me that to delight in the Lord is to keep the Sabbath holy?  I know that this is what he means because I have tried it, and, believe me, it really works.  I have gotten almost all the desires of my heart.  If He chose not to give me some of my hearts desires is only because they were not good for me, or because it involved a person.  When our desires involves a person, God cannot give us that desire because God does not force His will on any person; therefore, He suggests to the person what we desire, but it is up to that person to accept the suggestion or not.

         For example I am praying for my three children to return to the Lord, but they refused to listen to God’s calling.  Even my godly son Pasqual has abandoned our truth.  God’s will is for every one to be saved, but He will not force His will on any one.

         He will give you all your heart’s desires if the people you are praying for will open their hearts to the voice of God.  But all your desires that don’t involve people He will give it to you if they are good to you.  Of course, He is not going to give you something that is not good for you.  I know that some people are going to desire a cigarette.  I also know that He is not going to give them their desire either.  Why do I know?  Is very simple, a cigarette is not good for you.
Sometimes a person might be delighting themselves in the Lord, keeping His Sabbath holy, yet their desires are not being received.  Why is that? you ask.  Then you go back to king David on his Psalms, and you find the answer to this problem.  Psalms 66:18.  It says:

 “If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me:”

You might keep the Sabbath holy, but have some hidden sins in your heart that has not been confessed.  To solve this problem is very simple. You go to the person you offended, ask their forgiveness and God’s forgiveness, and you are now ready to receive all the blessings of delighting in the Sabbath.
What things could I do on the Sabbath?  Well, Jesus has an answer to that.   In Matthew 12:10-12.  He says:

  “And, behold, there was a man which had his hand withered.  And they asked him, saying, Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath days? that they might accuse him.  And He said unto them, What man shall there be among you, that shall have one sheep, and if it fall into a pit on the Sabbath day, will he not lay hold on it, and lift it out? How much then is a man better than a sheep?  Wherefore it is lawful to do well on the Sabbath days.”

Some people asked me if the first day of the week became the Sabbath because Jesus resurrected on that day.
Personally I don’t think so, and I will tell you why. Let’s examine what happened on that day.  We find that in Matthew 28:1-20:

1: “In the end of the Sabbath, as it began to dawn toward the first day of the week, came Mary Magdalene and the other Mary to see the sepulcher”.
 2: “And, behold, there was a great earthquake: for the angel of the Lord descended from heaven, and came and rolled back the stone from the door, and sat upon it”.
3:  “His countenance was like lightning and his raiment white as snow:”
4: “And for fear of him the keepers did shake, and became as dead men.”
5: “And the angel answered and said unto the women, Fear not ye: for I know that ye seek Jesus, which was crucified.”
6: “He is not here: for he is risen, as he said.  Come; see the place where the Lord lay.”
7: “And go quickly, and tell his disciples that he is risen from the dead; and, behold, he goeth before you into Galilee; there shall ye see him: lo, I have told you.”

Note here that the angel told the women that Jesus, after He arose, went to Galilee.  But, let me finish the chapter and then I will tell you more of my observations:

8: “And they departed quickly from the sepulcher with fear and great joy; and did run to bring his disciples word.
9: “And as they went to tell his disciples, behold, Jesus met them, saying, All hail.  And they came and held him by the feet, and worshipped him.”
10: “Then said Jesus unto them, Be not afraid: go tell my brethren that they go into Galilee, and there shall they see me.”
11: “Now when they were going, behold, some of the watch came into the city, and showed unto the chief priests all the things that were done.”
12: “And when they were assembled with the elders, and had taken counsel, they gave LARGE MONEY UNTO THE SOLDIERS,”
13: “Saying, Say ye, His disciples came by night, and stole him away while we slept.”
14: “And if this come to the governor’s ears, we will persuade him, and secure you.”
15: “So they took the money, and did as they were taught: and this saying is commonly reported among the Jews until this day.”
16: “Then the eleven disciples went away into Galilee, into a mountain where Jesus had appointed them.”
17: “And when they saw him, they worshipped him: but some doubted.”
18: “And Jesus came and spoke unto them, saying All POWER is given unto me in heaven and in earth.”
19: “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:
20: “Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world.  Amen.”

Note.: In verse 7 the angel of the Lord told the women to go tell the disciples that Jesus was risen, then he said that he had gone to Galilee.

Yet He did not say a word about change the Sabbath to Sunday to them. If He was going to change the Sabbath to Sunday don't you think that would be the time for that?

 Now, everything that Jesus did was for our example.  Just stop, and think—if Jesus was going to change the Sabbath from the seventh day to the first day of the week, the first thing that he was going to do would be to tell them, that He had changed the Sabbath. Therefore, they should not walk very far, for that would be breaking the Sabbath.  Here, however, the angel is telling them that Jesus went to Galilee.  Well!  Galilee was about 60 miles away from Jerusalem.  To walk 60 miles would take probably two or three days, if they walked a mile in 20 minutes it would be three miles per hour.  You also must consider that in those days the road conditions were not very good.

They did not have tractors in those days to smooth the roads; besides, they did not have the proper shoes for the kind of journey they were taking.  I imagine them walking and talking at the same time, and taking their time, instead of hurrying to get there. Quite the contrary of what the women did after they were told that Jesus arose.  Note that verse 8 says that they left quickly from the sepulcher, with fear and great joy, and ran to tell the news to the disciples.  If the change of Sabbath was to take place in that day, that certainly was not the attitude that they should have taken.

Note also that in verses 16 through 20 the disciples are gathered in a mountain into the way of Galilee, that Jesus Himself had appointed to them.  There in this mountain they met with Jesus right after He had been risen.  Jesus Himself walked a distance way longer then the distance aloud for the Sabbath.  Also here in the mountain He told His disciples all that they had to do after He went back to heaven.  Notice that in this whole conversation with the disciples He never said a word about the observance of the first day of the week.  If that was to be observed this was the time to do it.  You must remember that a day’s journey was only a mile or two at most.
The apostle Paul says that in Acts 1:12:

 “Then returned they unto Jerusalem from the mount called Olives, which is from Jerusalem a Sabbath day’s journey.”

The distance from the Mount of Olives to Jerusalem is approximately one and half miles.  That was the distance that a person could walk on the Sabbath.  Jesus walked probably 25 miles or more to meet with the disciples, so that was not the example He would give if He wanted them to start keeping that day Holy.

 To some people, Sunday is the day they celebrate the resurrection because Christ arose on that day; to me I want to celebrate it every moment of
my life.  I don’t want to celebrate it once a week, or once a year.  That is not enough for one of the most important event of my existence.  Without the resurrection I would not have any hope of salvation.  This is something to shout about, and to be excited about.  I want to shout it from the mountain top; I want to pass it on, just as the song says.

It is because Christ arose from the dead that I will have the hope of the resurrection.   Satan knew that the resurrection of Christ was the mark of his end.  Now I know that when I die I will rise again.  I love the resurrection of my Jesus.  I believe that when He comes back I will see my loved ones, because they too, will resurrect.

Sunday observance did not start at Christ’s resurrection.  It started a hundred years later.  For one hundred years the disciples and all the Christians of that time observed the Sabbath on the seventh day.  Through all the years the weekly cycle has never changed, and the seventh day has been Saturday ever since Creation.  The monthly calendars have been changed, but the weekly cycle has never changed.
The seventh day is the day to rest.   And the seventh day is Saturday.  So,  “Saturday is the Lord’s day.”
 
 

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Professor Azenilto G. Brito
Ministério Sola Scriptura

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