In previous blog posts, I have covered three of the Ten Commandments. Do not murder, do not be a false witness, and do not misuse His name. Remembering the Sabbath seems to be pretty important to Yahweh, and it is on equal ground with commandments such as do not murder, yet it is mostly ignored now, with various reasons sited for the change. The commandment is clear that no one is to be made to work on the Sabbath.
Exo 20:8 “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy.
Exo 20:9 Six days you shall labor, and do all your work,
Exo 20:10 but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the LORD your God. On it you shall not do any work, you, or your son, or your daughter, your male servant, or your female servant, or your livestock, or the sojourner who is within your gates.
Exo 20:11 For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested on the seventh day. Therefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy.
If Yahweh consecrated, or set apart special, the seventh day, who has the authority to eliminate or change the day? Where do we get this idea that anything has changed in this regards from day six of creation? Some would say Jesus changed it, but we only find him keeping it, or explaining it. Note the following verses:
Luk 4:16 And he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up. And as was his custom, he went to the synagogue on the Sabbath day, and he stood up to read.
Mat 12:1 At that time Jesus went through the grainfields on the Sabbath. His disciples were hungry, and they began to pluck heads of grain and to eat.
Mat 12:2 But when the Pharisees saw it, they said to him, “Look, your disciples are doing what is not lawful to do on the Sabbath.”
Mat 12:3 He said to them, “Have you not read what David did when he was hungry, and those who were with him:
Mat 12:4 how he entered the house of God and ate the bread of the Presence, which it was not lawful for him to eat nor for those who were with him, but only for the priests?
Mat 12:5 Or have you not read in the Law how on the Sabbath the priests in the temple profane the Sabbath and are guiltless?
Mat 12:6 I tell you, something greater than the temple is here.
Mat 12:7 And if you had known what this means, ‘I desire mercy, and not sacrifice,’ you would not have condemned the guiltless.
Mat 12:8 For the Son of Man is lord of the Sabbath.”
By the time of Jesus, the Pharisaical priesthood had broken the the law of Yahweh by adding a long list of requirements to the Sabbath day that Yahweh did not command. The Talmud contained volumes of rules, adding to God’s law, that those practicing Judaism had to keep. Jesus set the record straight because as the incarnate Word of Yahweh, it was through Him that the Sabbath was established. He is truly Lord of the Sabbath. In the few verses above, we saw Jesus having a custom of going to the synagogue on the Sabbath day. When His disciples were accused of breaking the Sabbath by the Pharisees, Jesus corrected them. The Sabbath commandment does not forbid plucking heads of grain and eating them, yet Pharisaical law did. Other examples that are given are doing good on the Sabbath and “pulling a sheep out of the pit”.
Mat 12:9 He went on from there and entered their synagogue.
Mat 12:10 And a man was there with a withered hand. And they asked him, “Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath?”—so that they might accuse him.
Mat 12:11 He said to them, “Which one of you who has a sheep, if it falls into a pit on the Sabbath, will not take hold of it and lift it out?
Mat 12:12 Of how much more value is a man than a sheep! So it is lawful to do good on the Sabbath.”
We have some clarification from Jesus about some differences between the Babylonian Talmud and Yahweh’s law, but we do not find the day changed to a different day yet, or anything to indicate the Ten Commandments were reduced to nine. Some verses appear in the letter to the Hebrews, speaking about entering His rest. Here they are in context:
Heb 3:7 Therefore, as the Holy Spirit says, “Today, if you hear his voice,
Heb 3:8 do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion, on the day of testing in the wilderness,
Heb 3:9 where your fathers put me to the test and saw my works for forty years.
Heb 3:10 Therefore I was provoked with that generation, and said, ‘They always go astray in their heart; they have not known my ways.’
Heb 3:11 As I swore in my wrath, ‘They shall not enter my rest.’”
Heb 3:12 Take care, brothers, lest there be in any of you an evil, unbelieving heart, leading you to fall away from the living God.
Heb 3:13 But exhort one another every day, as long as it is called “today,” that none of you may be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin.
Heb 3:14 For we have come to share in Christ, if indeed we hold our original confidence firm to the end.
Heb 3:15 As it is said, “Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion.”
Heb 3:16 For who were those who heard and yet rebelled? Was it not all those who left Egypt led by Moses?
Heb 3:17 And with whom was he provoked for forty years? Was it not with those who sinned, whose bodies fell in the wilderness?
Heb 3:18 And to whom did he swear that they would not enter his rest, but to those who were disobedient?
Heb 3:19 So we see that they were unable to enter because of unbelief.
Heb 4:1 Therefore, while the promise of entering his rest still stands, let us fear lest any of you should seem to have failed to reach it.
Heb 4:2 For good news came to us just as to them, but the message they heard did not benefit them, because they were not united by faith with those who listened.
Heb 4:3 For we who have believed enter that rest, as he has said, “As I swore in my wrath, ‘They shall not enter my rest,’” although his works were finished from the foundation of the world.
Heb 4:4 For he has somewhere spoken of the seventh day in this way: “And God rested on the seventh day from all his works.”
Heb 4:5 And again in this passage he said, “They shall not enter my rest.”
Heb 4:6 Since therefore it remains for some to enter it, and those who formerly received the good news failed to enter because of disobedience,
Heb 4:7 again he appoints a certain day, “Today,” saying through David so long afterward, in the words already quoted, “Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts.”
Heb 4:8 For if Joshua had given them rest, God would not have spoken of another day later on.
Heb 4:9 So then, there remains a Sabbath rest for the people of God,
Heb 4:10 for whoever has entered God’s rest has also rested from his works as God did from his.
Heb 4:11 Let us therefore strive to enter that rest, so that no one may fall by the same sort of disobedience.
Heb 4:12 For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.
Heb 4:13 And no creature is hidden from his sight, but all are naked and exposed to the eyes of him to whom we must give account.
Those who say these verses eliminate the Sabbath, please tell me, how? These verses say several times not to harden your heart and be disobedient. Disobedient to what? Is it not speaking of the commandments which include the Sabbaths? Verse 4:9-10 states, “So then, there remains a Sabbath rest for the people of God, for whoever has entered God’s rest has also rested from his works as God did from his”. The following verses are referred to from the Psalms by the writer of the letter to the Hebrews.
Psa 95:6 Come in, let us worship and bow down; let us kneel before Yahweh, our maker.
Psa 95:7 For he is our God, and we are the people of his pasture and the sheep of his hand. Today if you will hear his voice:
Psa 95:8 “Do not harden your heart as at Meribah, as in the day of Massah in the wilderness,
Psa 95:9 when your ancestors tried me. They put me to the test, even though they had seen my work.
Psa 95:10 For forty years I loathed that generation, and said, ‘They are a people whose heart wanders. And my ways they do not know.’
Psa 95:11 Therefore I swore in my anger, ‘They shall surely not enter into my rest.'”
The rest Yahweh is referring to here is more of an eternal rest; however, does that negate the Sabbath rest? Joshua did not bring them into the eternal rest even though they entered the land. It was right after the people were disobedient and tried to gather manna on the Sabbath day that the water out of a rock incident happened, and Yahweh was not happy with anyone at this point.
Num 20:10 and Moses and Aaron summoned the assembly to the presence of the rock, and he said to them, “Please listen, you rebels; can we bring out water for you from this rock?”
Num 20:11 Then Moses lifted up his hand and struck the rock with his staff twice. And abundant water went out, and the community and their livestock drank.
Num 20:12 But Yahweh said to Moses and Aaron, “Because you have not trusted in me, to regard me as holy in the sight of the Israelites, you will not bring this assembly into the land that I have given to them.”
Num 20:13 Those were the waters of Meribah, where the Israelites quarreled with Yahweh, and he showed himself holy among them.
Another passage pointing to Sabbath keeping in the future is from the words of Jesus describing the time before His coming.
Mat 24:15 “So when you see the abomination of desolation spoken about by the prophet Daniel standing in the holy place” (let the one who reads understand),
Mat 24:16 “then those in Judea must flee to the mountains!
Mat 24:17 The one who is on his housetop must not come down to take things out of his house,
Mat 24:18 and the one who is in the field must not turn back to pick up his cloak.
Mat 24:19 And woe to those who are pregnant and to those who are nursing their babies in those days!
Mat 24:20 But pray that your flight may not happen in winter or on a Sabbath.
Mat 24:21 For at that time there will be great tribulation, such as has not happened from the beginning of the world until now, nor ever will happen.
Mat 24:22 And unless those days had been shortened, no human being would be saved. But for the sake of the elect, those days will be shortened.
Mat 24:23 “At that time if anyone should say to you, ‘Behold, here is the Christ,’ or ‘Here he is,’ do not believe him!
Mat 24:24 For false messiahs and false prophets will appear, and will produce great signs and wonders in order to deceive, if possible, even the elect.
Mat 24:25 Behold, I have told you ahead of time!
Mat 24:26 Therefore if they say to you, ‘Behold, he is in the wilderness,’ do not go out, or ‘Behold, he is in the inner rooms,’ do not believe it!
Mat 24:27 For just as the lightning comes from the east and flashes to the west, so the coming of the Son of Man will be.
Mat 24:28 Wherever the corpse is, there the vultures will gather.
Not only does the ability to rest on the Sabbath show freedom, it is also a mark. For those of us grafted in to Israel. Look at the promise given in Isaiah. A eunuch was formerly locked out of Israel, but now he is let in.
Isa 56:1 Thus says Yahweh: “Observe justice and do righteousness, for my salvation is close to coming, and my justice to being revealed.
Isa 56:2 Happy is the man who does this, and the son of humankind who keeps hold of it, who keeps the Sabbath so as not to profane it, and who keeps his hand from doing any evil.”
Isa 56:3 And do not let the foreigner who joins himself to Yahweh say, “Surely Yahweh will separate me from his people.” And do not let the eunuch say, “Look! I am a dry tree!”
Isa 56:4 For thus says Yahweh, “To the eunuchs who keep my Sabbaths, and choose that in which I delight, and who keep hold of my covenant.
Isa 56:5 And I will give them a monument and a name in my house and within my walls, better than sons and daughters; I will give him an everlasting name that shall not be cut off.
Isa 56:6 And the foreigners who join themselves to Yahweh to serve him and to love the name of Yahweh, to become his servants, every one who keeps the Sabbath, so as not to profane it, and those who keep hold of my covenant,
Isa 56:7 I will bring them to my holy mountain; I will make them merry in my house of prayer. their burnt offerings and their sacrifices will be accepted on my altar, for my house shall be called a house of prayer for all peoples,”
Isa 56:8 declares the Lord Yahweh, who gathers the scattered ones of Israel (still I will gather to him, to his gathered ones).
If a foreigner joins himself with Yahweh and keeps His covenant, Yahweh says He will bring this person to His mountain. Is this not what Jesus did on the cross, making a way for the foreigners, those separated by a wall of separation from Yahweh? Look at Philip witnessing the Egyptian eunuch reading the book of the prophet Isaiah. Is it coincidental that the eunuch was reading Isaiah?
Act 8:26 Now an angel of the Lord said to Philip, “Rise and go toward the south to the road that goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza.” This is a desert place.
Act 8:27 And he rose and went. And there was an Ethiopian, a eunuch, a court official of Candace, queen of the Ethiopians, who was in charge of all her treasure. He had come to Jerusalem to worship
Act 8:28 and was returning, seated in his chariot, and he was reading the prophet Isaiah.
Act 8:29 And the Spirit said to Philip, “Go over and join this chariot.”
Act 8:30 So Philip ran to him and heard him reading Isaiah the prophet and asked, “Do you understand what you are reading?”
Act 8:31 And he said, “How can I, unless someone guides me?” And he invited Philip to come up and sit with him.
Act 8:32 Now the passage of the Scripture that he was reading was this: “Like a sheep he was led to the slaughter and like a lamb before its shearer is silent, so he opens not his mouth.
Act 8:33 In his humiliation justice was denied him. Who can describe his generation? For his life is taken away from the earth.”
Act 8:34 And the eunuch said to Philip, “About whom, I ask you, does the prophet say this, about himself or about someone else?”
Act 8:35 Then Philip opened his mouth, and beginning with this Scripture he told him the good news about Jesus.
Act 8:36 And as they were going along the road they came to some water, and the eunuch said, “See, here is water! What prevents me from being baptized?”
Act 8:38 And he commanded the chariot to stop, and they both went down into the water, Philip and the eunuch, and he baptized him.
The Eunuch was likely aware of the law that formerly prevented him of entering the assembly.
Deu 23:1 “No man with crushed testicles or whose male organ is cut off may come into the assembly of Yahweh.
The Sabbaths are a delight. Don’t get robbed of rest.
Isa 58:13 If you hold your foot back from the Sabbath, from doing your affairs on my holy day, if you call the Sabbath a pleasure, the holy day of Yahweh honorable, if you honor him more than doing your ways, than finding your affairs and speaking a word,
Isa 58:14 then you shall take your pleasure in Yahweh, and I will make you ride upon the heights of the earth, and I will feed you the heritage of Jacob your ancestor, for the mouth of Yahweh has spoken.”
The Sabbath was given as a sign, forever, to identify or mark the people of Yahweh. Nothing has changed, only peoples’ perception, which is no different now than any other disobedient generation who would not obey Yahweh.
Exo 31:12 And Yahweh spoke to Moses and said,
Exo 31:13 “And you, speak to the Israelites, saying, ‘Surely you must keep my Sabbaths, because it is a sign between me and you throughout your generations, in order to know that I am Yahweh, who consecrates you.
Exo 31:14 And you must keep the Sabbath, because it is holy for you; defilers of it will surely be put to death, because anyone who does work on it—that person will be cut off from among his people.
Exo 31:15 On six days work can be done, and on the seventh is a Sabbath of complete rest, a holy day for Yahweh; anyone doing work on the Sabbath day will surely be put to death.
Exo 31:16 The Israelites will pay attention to the Sabbath in order to fulfill the Sabbath throughout their generations as a lasting covenant.
Exo 31:17 It is a sign between me and the Israelites forever, because in six days Yahweh made the heavens and the earth, and on the seventh he ceased and recovered.”
Exo 31:18 And when he finished speaking with him on Mount Sinai, he gave to Moses the two tablets of the testimony, stone tablets, written with the finger of God.
What god from the nations gives their people a day to rest? It is not the contemporary church. Only Yahweh gives his people rest. Anyone who mandates a change of the day is placing themselves at a higher authority than the Creator. Jesus said the following:
Mat 11:28 Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.
Mat 11:29 Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.
Mat 11:30 For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”
We see one of “kings” of the fourth kingdom making some changes prophesied in the book of Daniel. Could this be how we have arrived at this point of disregarding the special days of the Creator?
Dan 7:23 “Thus he said: ‘As for the fourth beast, there shall be a fourth kingdom on earth, which shall be different from all the kingdoms, and it shall devour the whole earth, and trample it down, and break it to pieces.
Dan 7:24 As for the ten horns, out of this kingdom ten kings shall arise, and another shall arise after them; he shall be different from the former ones, and shall put down three kings.
Dan 7:25 He shall speak words against the Most High, and shall wear out the saints of the Most High, and shall think to change the times and the law; and they shall be given into his hand for a time, times, and half a time.
Dan 7:26 But the court shall sit in judgment, and his dominion shall be taken away, to be consumed and destroyed to the end.
Dan 7:27 And the kingdom and the dominion and the greatness of the kingdoms under the whole heaven shall be given to the people of the saints of the Most High; his kingdom shall be an everlasting kingdom, and all dominions shall serve and obey him.’
I realize this is an “antichrist” verse, but we are putting all of our faith into theologians and evangelists who think they know exactly what this is speaking of, when the people in Thessalonica, who had Paul to explain these things, didn’t understand completely. There are other ways to look at this than the modern view. We know that according to the Apostle John there were many antichrists already in his day.
1Jn 2:18 Children, it is the last hour, and as you have heard that antichrist is coming, so now many antichrists have come. Therefore we know that it is the last hour.
1Jn 2:19 They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would have continued with us. But they went out, that it might become plain that they all are not of us.
1Jn 2:20 But you have been anointed by the Holy One, and you all have knowledge.
1Jn 2:21 I write to you, not because you do not know the truth, but because you know it, and because no lie is of the truth.
So far, we have only been speaking of the weekly Sabbath. What about all the other Sabbaths? Let’s look at the established Sabbaths that would be observed by the whole House of Israel, all twelve tribes, and those who sojourn with them, forever. It is important to note that these are Yahweh’s appointed times He shares with His people. Even if we don’t celebrate them with Him, they still exist at the appointed times, and they are Yahweh’s special days.
Lev 23:4 “‘These are Yahweh’s appointed times, holy assemblies, which you shall proclaim at their appointed time.
Lev 23:5 In the first month, on the fourteenth of the month at the evening is Yahweh’s Passover.
Lev 23:6 And on the fifteenth day of this month is Yahweh’s Feast of Unleavened Bread; for seven days you shall eat unleavened bread.
Lev 23:7 On the first day there shall be a holy assembly for you; you shall not do any regular work.
Lev 23:8 And you shall present an offering for Yahweh made by fire for seven days; on the seventh day there shall be a holy assembly; you shall not do any regular work.'”
The Feast of Unleavened Bread has two Sabbaths contained in it’s appointed time, in addition to the weekly Sabbath. This has caused much confusion with the death and resurrection of Jesus. Many religions think Jesus was only in the tomb for a day and a half, not the three days and three nights He himself prophesied, because they don’t understand the timing of the different Sabbaths around the crucifixion. For more on this, please see my blog, Three Days and Three Nights or a Day and a Half?. Another Sabbath is Shavuot, or Pentecost.
Lev 23:15 “‘And you shall count for yourselves from the day after the Sabbath, from the day of your bringing the wave offering’s sheaf—there shall be seven full weeks.
Lev 23:16 Until the day after the seventh Sabbath you shall count fifty days; then you shall present a new grain offering for Yahweh.
Lev 23:17 You shall bring from your dwellings for a wave offering two loaves of bread made with two-tenths of an ephah of finely milled flour; they must be baked with leaven—the firstfruits belonging to Yahweh.
Lev 23:18 And, in addition to the bread, you shall present seven yearling male lambs without defects and one young bull and two rams—they shall be a burnt offering for Yahweh with their grain offering and their libations, an offering made by fire, an appeasing fragrance for Yahweh.
Lev 23:19 And you shall offer one he-goat as a sin offering and two yearling male lambs as a sacrifice of fellowship offerings.
Lev 23:20 And the priest shall wave them with the bread of the firstfruits as a wave offering before Yahweh; in addition to the two male lambs, they shall be holy for Yahweh for the priest.
Lev 23:21 And you shall make a proclamation on this very same day; it shall be a holy assembly for you; you shall not do any regular work; this is a lasting statute in all your dwellings throughout your generations.
The fall Sabbaths, which are associated with Yahweh’s feast days, start with the Feast of Trumpets, which is also a Sabbath. This usually occurs sometime in September by the Gregorian calendar. The first day of the seventh month would be the sixth new moon after the Passover.
Lev 23:23 Then Yahweh spoke to Moses, saying,
Lev 23:24 “Speak to the Israelites, saying, ‘In the seventh month, on the first day of the month, you must have a rest period, a remembrance of the trumpet blast, a holy assembly.
Lev 23:25 You must not do any regular work, and you shall present an offering made by fire to Yahweh.'”
The next fall Sabbath is the day of atonement. These fall feasts are considered to be prophetic. Where the spring feasts were fulfilled with the death and resurrection of Jesus to the day, many believe the fall feasts will be fulfilled with the return of Jesus.
Lev 23:26 Then Yahweh spoke to Moses, saying,
Lev 23:27 “Surely the Day of Atonement is on the tenth day of the seventh month; it shall be a holy assembly for you, and you shall deny yourselves, and you shall present an offering made by fire to Yahweh.
Lev 23:28 And you must not do any regular work on this very same day, because it is the Day of Atonement to make atonement for you before Yahweh your God.
Finally, there is the feast of Sukkoth or booths. This is a big festival that lasts a week. These feasts have been kept by those practicing Judaism mostly since the early Greek and Roman churches wrongly forbade Christians from celebrating them early on in Christianity. These feast days and Sabbaths of Yahuah were replaced with the days the nations celebrated their gods’ feasts on, mostly by the Roman and Greek churches. Thankfully, there are many Christians realizing this error throughout the world that are starting to honour Yahweh’s feasts again. Please see my blog The Feasts of Yahweh.
Lev 23:33 Then Yahweh spoke to Moses, saying,
Lev 23:34 “Speak to the Israelites, saying, ‘On the fifteenth day of the seventh month, this shall be the Feast of Booths for seven days for Yahweh.
Lev 23:35 On the first day there shall be a holy assembly; you must not do any regular work.
Lev 23:36 For seven days you must present an offering made by fire to Yahweh. On the eighth day it shall be a holy assembly for you, and you shall present an offering made by fire to Yahweh; it is a celebration; you must not do any regular work.
Here is a short video of a Sukkot celebration in the United States:
Along with Sabbath days, there are also Sabbath years and Jubilee years. These are all things that Christians have been missing out on for hundreds of years. Study it for yourself and learn the ways of Yahweh. Maybe it would turn out to be a healthier way of life to slow down and rest on the Sabbath. Yahweh commands it for your own good.