Sabbath Keeping #1

There are those who insist that people who follow Jesus Christ must observe the Sabbath as the day of worship. An examination of the Word of God will prove such to be false.

First, Colossians 2:14-17 says, “Having wiped out the handwriting of requirements that was against us, which was contrary to us. And He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross…So let no one judge you in food or in drink, or regarding a festival or a new moon or sabbaths, which are a shadow of things to come, but the substance is of Christ” (Col. 2:14-17). The context clearly shows that Christ has removed the Law of Moses and as a result, no one (i.e. Judaizers) had the right to condemn Christians for NOT observing Jewish dietary laws, observing Jewish festivals, keeping the new moon or sabbaths. It also plainly states that the Law of Moses, which included the Sabbath, was a “shadow” of things to come, that is, it was not the truth, but only a faint forerunner of the true, the gospel of Christ. This is confirmed by the Hebrew writer (Heb. 8:1-6).

Second, the Holy Spirit revealed in 2 Corinthians 3:3-14, that the Ten Commandments have been done away with. That which was written “on tablets of stone” is called “the letter” that kills, “the ministry of death, written and engraved on stones” which was passing away when it was given (it was temporary, cp. Gal. 3:19-25), and the “ministry of condemnation.” In 2 Corinthians 3, the entire Law of Moses is under consideration as it was represented in that which was “on tablets of stone.” What was “on tablets of stone”? Nothing less than the Ten Commandments (Ex. 34:1; Deut. 5:6-22). So, the “Ten Commandments” as the “Ten Commandments” were done away with and replaced by the gospel of Christ, “the ministry of the Spirit” which was “more glorious,” also called “the ministry of righteousness.”

Some may object and ask what about the moral commands of the Ten Commandments, do we have any today? Yes. The Law of Christ restates nine of the ten commandments, only the Sabbath command is absent. No other gods and no idols (Acts 17:22-29); no vain use of God’s name (Eph. 4:29); honor father and mother (Eph. 6:1-3); no murder, adultery, theft, or covetousness (2 Cor. 6:9-10); and, no false witness (Eph. 4:25).

The Sabbath command has not been given to Christians, and no one is to judge them for not keeping it. The next aritcle will look at the argument that “Jesus kept the Sabbath.”

Steven F. Deaton