Sabbath Keeping #6

“For He Himself is our peace, who has made both one, and has broken down the middle wall of separation, having abolished in His flesh the enmity, that is, the law of commandments contained in ordinances, so as to create in Himself one new man from the two, thus making peace” (Eph. 2:14-15). When it is pointed out that Jesus nailed the Law of Moses to the cross, abolishing it, the Sabbatarian will sometimes respond by saying that the “ceremonial law” was abolished, but not the “moral law.” He will refer to the “ceremonial law” as the law of Moses and the “moral law” as the law of God. This presents many problems.

First, the law of Moses and the law of God are used interchangeably. Ezra was a “skilled scribe in the Law of Moses, which the Lord God of Israel had given” (Ezra 7:6). “Hilkiah the priest found the Book of the Law of the Lord given by Moses” (2 Chron. 34:14). So, the law of Moses was given by God, and the law of God was given by Moses–no distinction exists.

Further, the New Testament says, “Now when the days of her purification according to the law of Moses were completed, they brought Him to Jerusalem to present Him to the Lord (as it is written in the law of the Lord, ‘Every male who opens the womb shall be called holy to the Lord’), and to offer a sacrifice according to what is said in the law of the Lord” (cp. Lk. 2:22-24). Also, Luke 2:27, says they followed the “custom of the law” while 2:39, says they “performed all things according to the law of the Lord.”

Second, the reason the Sabbatarian wants to distinguish between the “ceremonial law,” and the “moral law,” is so he can keep the Sabbath, which he says is a part of the “moral law” of the ten commandments. Yet, the Bible makes no distinction between the two. Second Chronicles 31:3, says, “The king also appointed a portion of his possessions for the burnt offerings: for the morning and evening burnt offerings, the burnt offerings for the Sabbaths and the New Moons and the set feasts, as it is written in the Law of the Lord.” The “ceremonial” (burnt offerings, new moons, set feasts) and the “moral” (Sabbaths) are not separated.

Truth is, the law of the Lord given by Moses is the law of Moses given by the Lord, and it was nailed to the cross (Col. 2:14-17). Men are now obligated to keep the law of Christ, the gospel and there is no authority for Sabbath-keeping (Matt. 28:19-20).

Steven F. Deaton