I have attempted to simply take short notes on the salient points of these two sermons and conclude with an attempt to identify overall errors and insights that this study has given me. Any note in italics are mine.
Sanford Staab 9/1/3016
Con – should not keep the Sabbath or the Law of Moses
From SermonAudio – Jason Cooley http://www.sermonaudio.com/sermoninfo.asp?SID=11215923421
Ex 31:14 – law to keep the Sabbath
- Any work – ANY work – impossible to keep – nobody keeps the Sabbath
- To “the children of Israel” – not applicable to gentiles or any non-Israelites
- A perpetual covenant – this is a covenant with the children of Israel.
- A sign – the Jews require a sign.
- New covenant is for all to partake in.
- First covenant had fault
- Not according to the covenant I made with their fathers because they broke the covenant.
- Old covenant “brings into bondage”
- No verse in NT commands believer to keep Sabbath.
- Sabbath is not part of the new covenant
- … according to the truth of the Gospel (not law)
- “why compel the gentiles to live as do the jews?”
- “not justified by the works of the law”
- … includes “to keep the law of Moses” – this includes Sabbath keeping – not just circumcision
- Everybody important to the church came together to clarify this problem.
- James – “that we trouble not them…” says to not trouble gentiles with the law.
- They had no bible so they had to meet and send out letters to the churches.
- Abstain from Blood, idols, etc. to protect the consciences of the Jews. “Keep these and you do well”
- Moses mentioned to say “this has been taught for a long time – we don’t teach this.”
- “that they be not troubled” – by observing the Law of Moses.
- “subverting your souls” – by forcing the law onto the Gentiles consciences.
- “we gave no such commandment” – to obey the law : Elders of the church, James, Judas, Silas, Paul, Peter etc.
- Jews wanted to kill Paul – because he was teaching not to keep the law.
- Teach to forsake Moses – why Jews wanted to kill Paul.
- “As touching the gentiles – that they observe no such thing save only ... blood, strangled things, etc.”
- Did not mention Sabbath.
- Why do you need to keep this?
- Levites profane the Sabbath but are blameless.
- Jesus is Lord of the Sabbath day. Verse 8 – this set aside the Sabbath
- Jesus told me to pick up my bed and walk. – Because Jesus is Lord of the Sabbath and just ended it’s observance (because He fulfilled it).
- .. but the body is of Christ (who is above the Sabbath like head - Christ).
Matt 28:1 – First day of the week Christ rose
Mark 16:2 – Same
John 20:19 – Jesus visits Disciples on the first day
Acts 20:7 – first day Paul preached
1 Cor 16:2 – first day Worship, took an offering
Lev 23:5-11 – Feast of unleavened bread – wave offering given AFTER the Sabbath.
- Pentecost is on the 1st day.
Commandments mentioned in the New Testament:
- Worship God only– 50 times
- Idolatry – 12 times
- Name in vane – 4 times
- Honor Parents – 6 times
- Murder – 6 times
- Adultery – 12 times.
- Theft – 4 times.
- False Witness – 4 times
- Covet – 9 times
- Sabbath – 0 times
Sabbath changed by Rome, counter examples –
- Paul contended on the Sabbath – countering the law keeping (Saturday night is after Sabbath preaching)
- Rome is trying to corrupt Sunday not the Sabbath.
- If we live by Jewish law we do not acknowledge Christ’s Grace – Sabbath not observed
- On the first day assemble yourselves…
- Lords celebration should not be celebrated on any other day than the 1st – abandoning the paschal feast.
- They were wont to meet on a stated day before it was light to sing to Christ as God… then they would meet later and break bread together – this was Sunday.
- “On the day called Sunday all that are of the city and country gather…”
- Paul gave Sunday collections
- “We read this letter this Sunday…”
- “We solemnize that the day after Saturday in contradistinction to those who call this day their Sabbath and devote it to ease in eating, deviating from the old Jewish customs which they are now very ignorant of.”
Pro – Jim Staley
Does God Care about the Sabbath?
Ex 20:11 – “… the LORD (YWVH) blessed the Sabbath day, and hallowed it.”
- Commandment was given at the end of the creation week.
- This was when all things were “good” – this is the perfect state of creation.
- Did God intend the fall? (No says Jim)
- If there was no fall, would things still be the way they were then – perfect?
- Restoration logically means back to Eden status.
- 7th day was hallowed when everything was “perfect”.
IS 66:22 – at the time of the new heavens and earth all men shall come to worship God every 7th day
- This is during the millennium.
- Why would God mention Sabbath then?
- This comes just after Jesus splits the Mount of Olives at his second coming.
- Does God logically care about Sabbath only before Christ and at the Millennium but not now?
- Only given to the Jews
- Jews are Southern Kingdom (house of Judah). Israel is all 12 tribes or Northern Kingdome (depending on context).
- Law was given to ALL Israel.
- IS 42:6 – Israel was to be a light to the nations.
- God let the Egyptians join the Israelites when they left and crossed the Red Sea – this was a picture of what God wanted to do with Israel all along.
- Rom 11 – let them be grafted in
- Israel didn’t do their job
- Deut 4:5 – Follow my laws so other nations will see and believe.
- Today we try to evangelize the Gospel by making it attractive to the world but God said just obey my commandments and the nations will come to you because you will be so blessed.
- Is 56:6 – Sabbath and sacrifices apply to all those grafted in (strangers)
- “If you’re going to live in my house, you will live by my rules”
- Ex 12:49 – One law shall be to him that is home-born and to the stranger among you.
- It is the Sabbath of YHWH not of the Jews.
- Jer 11:16 – Chosen people is called an olive tree
- Eph 2:12 – grafted in by Christ – once far off.
- Sabbath a sign forever.
- Covenant(s) apply to both natives and grafted in.
- Middle Eastern covenants add to each other not cancel each other.
- The grafted in ARE The house of Israel (Northern Tribes).
- Jer 31:31 – new covenant is with Israel – not with Gentiles.
- Gentiles are the house of Israel – dispersed among the nations to bring them all in. (Note: there is strong archeological evidence that the 10 commandments were brought to the American continent at the time of Solomon and that some Indian tribes and common American names are derived from Hebraic sources.)
- Christian Sabbath is Sunday – counter examples:
- March 7th, 321 AD Constantine passes national Sunday law – “Let all judges and townspeople and occupations of all trades rest on the venerable day of the Sun.”
- Catholic Church admits they take full credit for setting Sunday as the day of worship – the scriptures did not change the day but the church did via its own power.
- AD 500 - Socrates Scholasticus: (church historian) “For although almost all churches throughout the world celebrate the sacred mysteries (Lord’s Supper) on the Sabbath of every week, yet the Christians of Alexandria and at Rome, on account of some ancient tradition, have ceased to do this. Ecclesiastical History, Book 5 ch 22.
- Rome ruled the world and so now we all worship on Sunday and not Saturday.
- Jesus taught us to not worship on Sunday
- John 14:15 – keep my commandments
- Mt 23:1 – Obey what the teachers of Moses say but do not do what they do. (Note: this is deemed a mistranslation by Rood and others – obey Moses not the traditions of men – see Rood’s Chronological Gospels for details on this.)
- Moses Seat refers to where the Torah was read (not commented on or added to) which is the context Jesus is referring to.
- Mat 19:16 – Keep commandments. – no change since Genesis.
- Disciples honored the Sabbath their entire life. (See Christ’s burial details – they obeyed the Sabbath) Obviously Jesus must not have been teaching them not to observe Sabbath.
- Rom 3:13 – don’t nullify the law.
- Acts 10 – Peter has never defiled himself with unclean food – he still kept the dietary laws 10 years after Christ died.
- Revelation: John was “in the spirit” on the Lord’s day – that is the Sabbath according to scripture, not Sunday.
- 1 John 5:2 – keep his commandments.
- Note that these instructions to keep the commandments were made when there was no New Testament to refer to – the only written commandments were in the Old Testament.
- Rev 14:12 – keep commandments and hold to the testimony of YHWH.
- Rom 14:5 – one day sacred or all days alike
- Could be talking about which days to fast on – nothing to do with Sabbath. If Paul broke Sabbath the Jews would have killed him.
- Col 2:16 – Don’t be judged about keeping Sabbath
- 1 Cor 2:8 & 20 – refers to the worlds/mans rules.
- Sabbath is not a doctrine of men. Paul must be against the new rules made up by men.
- It’s about the WAY the Sabbath is kept, not THAT it is kept.
- Col 2:13 – Verse is misread as if it is removing the law – what it is talking about is getting rid of the CURSE of the law – the Penalty, not the Law. (see ISV or Lamsa translations for a better read)
- How could Christ at judgment day throw anyone into Hell for breaking a law that no longer exists?
- Acts 20:7 – disciples breaking bread on the 1st day
- 1st day is translated from the Greek word Sabbaton.
- “Day” is in italics
- This was the first week of first-fruits – the counting of the Omer – so this is referring to the Sabbath of the FIRST week not the first DAY of the week.
- 1 Cor 16:1 – Collection taken on the first day.
- Sabbaton is used here as well – Sabbath day of the first week.
- The Feast of First fruits requires the taking of an offering.
- LITV translation: “on one of the Sabbaths…”
- Acts 15:20-21 - … For Moses of old time hath in every city them that preach him, being read in the synagogues every Sabbath day.
- List just 4 things not to do – did he mean there were the ONLY things to abstain from?
- The rest will be learned at Synagogue on Sabbath.
- Gal 4:9 - … how is it that you are turning back to those weak and miserable principles?
- Context v8 - “formerly when you did not know God”.
- These were pagans not Jews. He is referring to pagan festivals not the Sabbath.
- How can gentiles go back to something they never observed before?
- Jesus was often accused of breaking Sabbath – but he was breaking Sabbath traditions of men.
- Sabbath was so major in the culture – it wasn’t mentioned explicitly – it was understood to follow it.
- Mat 24:15-21 – when you see the abomination of desolation…
- Pray that your flight will not be on the Sabbath.
- This is end times – just before Jesus returns – Sabbath is still to be kept then.
Ex 20:10 – no work.
Ex 34:21 – Even on Harvest – rest
God provides EVERYTHING – honor Him and He will direct your paths and bless you.
Lev 23:8 – offer an offering by fire all days but on Sabbath.
It’s about doing your best to obey Sabbath.
Rom 8:1 – no condemnation
Is 58:13 – If you keep your feet from breaking the Sabbath … then you will find your joy in the LORD.
Num 15:32 – man gathering sticks on Sabbath
- Prep for work on the next day – give God the whole day. Don’t be addicted to work.
- Be part of the solution and not part of the problem.
How do I know the 7th day is still Saturday?Julian calendar was instituted in 45 AD, then Gregorian in the 1500s. We know Jesus’s disciples had the right day – it was honored by Christ himself. Every single Jewish group on earth today agrees – it’s on Saturday.
Salvation is not lost if you break Sabbath – but you will lose a reward. Your works follow you. (Rev 14:13). Let the Holy Spirit guide you in this. If you have to work on Sabbath – give your money away you made on that day.
The Con side appears to be mis-characterizing their opponents as a revival of the circumciser’s of Paul’s day. There are indeed Sabbatean’s that reflect this perspective and I personally know some that have gone so far as to become Karaite Jews and completely reject Christ. However the Pro side I believe represents the most common and up-coming Hebrew-roots perspective I have seen exhibited by ministries such as El Shaddai, Passon for Truth Ministries (Jim Staley), Michael Rood, and Stephen Pidgeon’s perspective. This perspective does not hold that law-keeping is of any salvific value but instead sees this movement as a preparation for the reunification of the 12 tribes of Israel and the “restoration of all things” at the advent of the millennium age and second coming of Christ.
Since most Hebrew-Roots people were once members of the common catholic/protestant perspectives of our day, it is safe to assume that their viewpoint clearly understands that of their opponents. On the other hand, many of the standard catholic/protestant view have not generally delved deeply into the evidences supporting the Hebrew-Roots perspective. Thus misunderstandings from the Con side are understandable and those reading this from that perspective need to make an extra effort to fully understand the Pro side’s perspective here before condemning their brothers as heretics.
I believe the force behind this trend towards a Hebrew-Roots perspective is the persistent existence of Israel as a nation, having been born in a single day and sustained by miraculous military victories. The current geopolitical situation was never anticipated by Calvin or the Catholic Church before the 20th century. This simple fact has caused many to attempt to understand Jewish culture more and has caused some to focus on understanding the biblical calendar and the feasts of the Old Testament. Such knowledge is critical to really grasp the Hebrew-Roots perspective and evidences, as is some basic understanding of the Hebrew language.
The Church is being inundated with new knowledge – new manuscripts, archeological evidence, textual evidence, new translations, better communication between viewpoints and technical astronomical dating data. People unaware of this new evidence simply will have a much harder time grasping the Hebrew Roots ideas. This is not a subject one can get into by going to a conference or reading a single book.
Hebrew-roots people, on the other hand, need to be extremely careful that their observance of the law doesn’t fall into the circumciser camp. I believe the Holy Spirit is convicting many Christians to observe the law out of love for God yet such actions prompt pride to come in with a superior salvation attitude that causes much strife. The Con side seeing law observance as bondage and rejection of Christ is also very antagonistic to a true understanding of the Pro viewpoint.
I have deeply studied this subject and continue to learn more in the interest of the unity of the body of Christ. It is my prayer that this brief study will help the church come together more closely and help prepare us for the second advent of, and marriage to, our Lord – YHWH himself.
Both perspectives claim Christ as Lord and Savior. Both call themselves Christians.
They will know we are Christians by our love for one another – not by our doctrine or culture.
Comments are welcome but please lets keep it clean and respectful and pertinent.