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The LORD of the Sabbath

=‘So that... “also Lord of the Sabbath”’ (Matt 12:8|Mark 2:28|Luke 6:5)



            As I find this two-sermon exposition by John MacArthur on why he believes Sunday is to be a Holy Day for Christians a succinct but comprehensive overview of the present (heralded) emblematic state of Sunday Sacredness arguments, I have chosen to address it head on for a response. This topic however can be more involved, and as somewhat of a background into this issue discussion, I, generally speaking, recommend these following more detailed resources:

-The pertinent, i.e. Sabbath Day/Commandment research works and seminar presentations of Samuele Bacchiocchi listed/referenced here.
(Cf. Dwight Nelson’s incorporation of Bacchiocchi’s Research (video) for his Net ‘98 presentation here -which, most oddly, but quite reflective enough, is actually the first and only time I have seen/heard an SDA evangelist present these more accurate information in their series in regards to the Historical change of the Sabbath.)

-The typical, manifestly now, more than less, old-time arguments for Sunday Sacredness from supposed 8+1 verses/passages* in the New Testament are detailedly addressed by Stephen Bohr in: The Bible or Tradition #8: Sunday's Shaky Foundation

* These are namely: (1) Matt 28:1 [at 04:34ff]; (2) Mark 16:1-2 [at 06:38ff]; (3) Mark 16:9 [at 08:30ff]; (4) John 20:1-2 [at 09:52ff]; (5) Luke 23:53-24 [at 12:07ff]; (6) John 20:19 [at 17:52ff]; (7) 1 Cor 16:1-2 [at 29:07ff]; (8) Acts 20:7-11 [at 36:09ff]; + (9) Rev 1:10 [at 46:26ff].
            The July 1998 Papal Encyclical Letter “Dies Domini” (=‘Lord’s Day’) by John Paul II attempting to, validatingly and ecumenically, help Christians rediscover the (supposed) Biblical basis for Sunday Sacredness is also, but briefly, addressed at 49:37ff. He has more detailedly addressed it in this prior presentation.

-The “Sabbath Truth” website

-This “Sabbath, Sunday And The New Covenant” 2-part presentation by Doug Batchelor. See, relatedly, here from Batchelor about: ‘Law vs. Grace||Old vs. New Covenants’. See also his 7-Part Series here|here.

-The summary Sabbath-to-Sunday historical snippet by Jim Staley of the Passion For Truth Ministry[1] (messages archive), following his Sabbath vs. Sunday Debate (hosted by Joseph Farah). See his full “And He Rested” Sabbath presentation.[2]

-See testimonies by Christians of various denominations about their conversion to Seventh Day Sabbath Worship within this testimonial post.

            However, in this blog post, I’ll not only be addressing the arguments head on, but may also correctively and/or advancingly differ on the prior arguments given in defences of the common/typical Seventh Day (Saturday) Sabbath. (My answers are not in bold blocs.)

Well, it was some months ago when we were in the gospel of Mark early in the summer that we covered the end of chapter 2 and the beginning of chapter 3 in which Jesus violated the Sabbath by the standards of the Jews.

The key here, which MacArthur actually seems to later forget or fudge is that Jesus
showed no regard for “the (unbiblical) standards of the Jews”. (Matt 15:3)

            As a foundational background, here are the Gospels episodes (in chronological order) of the Seven Sabbath Day miracles done by Jesus

Seven Sabbath Miracles (in Chronological Order)
1. Jesus Drives Out an Evil Spirit (Mark 1:21-28|Luke 4:31-37)                                   
2. Jesus Heals Peter’s Mother-in-law (Mark 1:29-31|Luke 4:38-39) -[other sick people came after Sabbath (Mark 1:32-34|Luke 4:40-41)]
3. Jesus Heals a Lame Man by the Pool of Bethesda (John 5:1-18)
4. Jesus Heals a Man with a Deformed Hand (Matt 12:9-14|Mark 3:1-6|Luke 6:6-11)
5. Jesus Heals a Crippled Woman (Luke 13:10-17)
6. Jesus Heals a Man Born Blind (John 9:1-16ff)
7. Jesus Heals a Man with Dropsy (Luke 14:1-6)

And when they confronted Him, He said two things, He said, “Man was not made for the Sabbath, but the Sabbath was made for man.” Which was to say that the Sabbath was not to be a burden which men had to conform to but the Sabbath was to be a delight which men could enjoy. The Jews had turned it in to an almost unbearable burden.

Jesus meant that the Sabbath was made ‘to benefit man’, and not actually vice versa, and
that from the beginning. All that man has had to do is to ‘keep that day holy’ (Exod 20:8), so that this beneficial blessing can be had by them.
            And it is actually quite significant to not that Jesus here did not say, ‘the Sabbath was made for the Jews’ as he could easily have distinguishly said as specifyingly done in other instances throughout the Gospels when wanting to pointedly speak of the Jewish People/Religion (Matt 10:6; 15:24; John 4:22).

The second thing He said which was even more shocking was, “The Son of Man is Lord of the Sabbath,” and thus He declared His sovereignty over the Sabbath.

Simply said here as that statement is more, exegetically, unpacked later, here Jesus was
merely declaring His ownership of the Sabbath, since He was also involved in its Creation. (Col 1:16; Heb 1:2; John 1:3)

How are we to understand the place that the Sabbath plays, if any, in the life of the people of God? Turn in your Bible for a moment to Exodus chapter 20. This is the Decalogue, the Ten Commandments. And near the middle of the Ten Commandments is the fourth commandment. We begin to read about it in verse 8. “Remember the Sabbath Day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath of the Lord your God. In it you shall not do any work, you or your son or your daughter, your male or your female servants, or your cattle or your sojourner or stranger who stays with you, for in six days the Lord made the heavens and the 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.”

There is no question about the other nine commandments being permanent and binding.  We are to have no other gods. We are never to make an idol. We are to worship only the true and living God. We are never to take the name of the Lord in vain. We are not to dishonor our father or mother, but rather give them honor. We are not to murder, commit adultery, steal, lie, or covet.

            Paul also says so in 1 Tim 1:8-11 & Rom 7:7ff. And, as at least priorly widely commonly glibly claimed by most Christians, The Ten Commandment Moral Law was not “nailed to the Cross”. That was all based on a misreading and misinterpreting of (the KJV of) Col 2:14 (cf. Eph 2:14-16). It was instead the certificate of debt of sins which was nailed to the cross and thus paid in full by the sacrifice of Christ.
            And quite pivotal to this discussion here, it is from that background in Col 2:14/Eph 2:14-16 that the various pedagogically (Gal 3:23-25) “sanctifying” (i.e., ‘securing a setting apart’) ceremonial rules/laws/feasts are no longer required to be observed by people who are now to be led by God’s Spirit. (E.g, Gal 6:18; Rom 8:14) and faith in Christ. (Gal 3:26-29).
            But quite contrary to what MacArthur later claims about the Seventh Day Sabbath itself did not have ceremonial cleansing aspects. Indeed it instead had quite tangible and moral reasons for existing and being remembered/observed, namely as a day of full physical rest from weekly work and also a day to remember the Creator and Worship Him.

Those are all moral mandates, moral commands, with the exception of verses 8 through 11, the fourth command regarding the Sabbath.

That is the whole beauty and also lingering “Great Controversy”, as seen here, over the
Sabbath...When it is properly studied out, it actually is not an arbitrary mandate by God and it rather is the most free expression of love and adherence by Man towards their Creator as its observance has always involved situations where faith in God was to be involved in some degree. As an illustration, it is like a computer manufacturer prescribing that those who buy his computer need to have it fully scanned every month and also check for firmware upgrade. That buyer can opt not to do so, but that would only indicate that they just do not think that the computer manufacturer has anything beneficial to offer them, or can’t improve on what they have already produced. So ignoring the Sabbath does lead to a form of idolatry (see LS 95-96). I.e., a self-worshipping idolatry where the creation thinks he/she knows much better than the Creator. Even in the Earth remade perfect and New, all flesh will know that they should come before God in Sabbath worship as He has commanded. (Isa 66:22-24). As such, Sabbath Observance is most vitally important to the, especially thriving, viability of God’s Creation.
            From corporately and personally having observed the various additional Divine blessing and guidance which God has given to those who have observed all of His Truths, especially anchored by the Seventh Day Sabbath, and also in its full Gospel socio-economic extension, then I can see that God manifestly does reserve this guidance and blessing to be gradually bestowed on those who are fully obedient to Him. Others can “idolatrously” try to achieve these things on their own, and by their own wisdom/effort, but it all results in quite detrimental and slowing down “trial and errors”, or a greatly delayed realization when then the reached objective, if ever reached, usually is no timely/beneficial benefit.
            And speaking on laws which actually do not seem to be moral, the Fifth Commandment, particularly with its emphasis on “Honoring” and all that being linked to (imposed) death if ignored/violated (cf. Lev 20:9; Exod 21:15, 17; Pro 20:20; Matt 15:4), just does not seem to be based on a tangible reason, but merely an honorific one. It makes much more “moral sense” to “honor the Creator” than parents. E.g., If one has parents who are criminals, they are still commanded by the Fifth Commandment to “honor” them, and manifestly still, today, under a penalty of premature death, even if they may not “obey” them when they are advocating their children to engage or assist them in committing criminal acts.

And the question that is often posed is a simple one. If all the other commands are permanent, is not this one permanent as well?

The succinct, Biblically most logical/straightforward, answer is “Yes”...Jesus made all
other commands “righteously” “fuller” (Matt 5:17-20; Isa 42:21) and He most deliberately and explicitly did so with the Sabbath than any other commandments (John 5:19; Matt 12:8)

            The Sabbath eternally reflects God’s full intent for a day off from work, -(which (i.e,. work) man was always meant to do for 6 days a week), (psychological) rest and Divine worship, as well as providing social aid, liberation and rest for others in various need.

There are people who believe it is and we might call them strict Sabbatarians. They fall generally into two categories...

And there are over 500 denominations that keep Saturday as Sabbath.

one would be Seventh Day Adventists, I think we're familiar with them. I think it's legitimate to consider Seventh Day Adventism as a cult because they believe that the writings of Ellen G. White are inspired by God and could be put alongside the Bible.

            (Surprising even that it actually is surprisingly, this severe denunciation of SDAs by MacArthur is actually lately new from him since priorly, he used to, and controversially amongsts his audience, cordially refer to SDAs as “friends”. (See e.g., in this transcript (browser search for “Adventist” of a Nov. 19, 1980 Q&A session (mp3 at 55:36)). He there also relates how he grew up in an SDA Community in the Glendale, CA area and that all of his sisters, and all of his own children, were born at the local SDA Hospital (the Glendale Adventist Medical Center). Interestingly enough, MacArthur goes on to state how the SDA Church had sent him an speaking invitation letter for, (manifestly) the 1980 General Conference Session (held in Dallas, TX in July that year), ‘wanting/needing to hear his message’, but was disinvited a week later. Ironically enough, the SDA Church did not formally split after that, but, with its 27, now 28 Fundamental Beliefs creedal document finalized and approvingly voted upon at the GC Session, the potentially-fragmentable Church then was probably “congealed” by that action. (I.e., cf. in here where later (July 6, 2003) MacArthur, perhaps merely from past recollections, claimed, [which is, i.e., in terms of an “all over the map” and “wide spectrum” extent, “sort of” news to me], that: “Dealing with Seventh-Day Adventists is not easy because they're sort of all over the map. There's a wide spectrum of what they believe.”) The ca. 1979-80 Desmond Ford Crisis, -(due to his, now Biblically shown to be spurious, objections to the SDA interpretation of Dan 8 involving 1844, (cf. from here), Sanctuary Service’s the Day of Atonement - Investigative Judgement), and thus relatedly EGW and the SOP, was occurring then, -with the, also unity-contributive, pivotal Glacier View “Sanctuary Review” commitee’s meetings having just occurred in August 1980, and was indeed ‘critical’ as potential Church-fragmentable.)  

As done in this blog post, the proper understanding of EGW and her writings should be
that though she did validly/genuinely have the prophetic gift, (a gift that the NT amply states can, did and would continue to exist in the NT Church upon whomever God desires to grant it (1 Cor 14:1; i.e., including women Acts 21:9; 1 Cor 11:5)), like Paul himself knew and understood, even having the prophetic gift does not mean that everything the person states had directly come from a direct inspiration or revelation from God. (e.g., 2 Sam 7:1-7). EGW herself placed the Bible over her writings, in the sense that they would be the final arbitrator as to what is Biblically true. The vast majority of what EGW said was from non-direct revelations, and thus are even more subject to being overruled by deeper exegetical study of, and understanding from, the Bible.
            In regards to her many ‘special “testimonies”’ (i.e. contained/collected mainly in ca. 9 Volumes) she gave to people, these were evidently from special thought indications and direction by God as to pointed themes/issues and pointedly who should be address, whether individuals, a group, the leadership and/or the entire Church. But, (as also personally experienced here), even when such testimonies, (and perhaps also the various substantiating points), were initiated by direct thematic indication/inspiration, (and more likely, more often than not), exactly how she should write out that testimony, or even fully substantiate it was left to the human element in her. So it would not be surprising at all that a better understanding of the Bible can overrule a conclusory counsel that she had written out, even if its theme was based on direct revelation...but I myself have not yet seen, (i.e., in the testimonies), a (valid) instance of such contradiction.
            These questions answerings [39:03-45:24-47:26-49:24; 58:51-01:02:30], and this presentation by George R. Knight are very helpful in this matter of the proper role of Ellen White’s writings. And in this seminar presentation, Stephen Bohr gives, there, a very good, and copiously referenced, Biblical study on how with: the ‘(OT) Scriptures’, John the Baptist vs. Jesus Christ, God had effectuated the same ‘Bible, Lesser Light vs. Greater Light (=Jesus Christ)’ scenario, in which the prophetic gift through EGW, and its purpose, was contextualized.
            And indeed, even with the production of the rest of the NT Scriptures since the time of John the Baptist, what Paul and any of the other Apostles and NT writers wrote is actually likewise subject to the Greater Light of Jesus Christ. Case in point, as discussed around here, in the writings of James we do see a correction/calibration of what Paul had (perhaps merely “difficultly” (2 Pet 3:15-16)) been preaching, (then later also wrote down), in regards to what (Full) Righteousness was all about. (James 2:14-26). What James rightly brought out in regards to ‘also doing good works towards people in need’ and its pivotal relationship to salvation was indeed in perfect harmony with what Jesus had also taught. (See e.g., Matt 19:21|Luke 18:22; Matt 25:31-46). And, perhaps Paul “correctingly” went on, in subsequent writings, to more comprehensively (and likewise Christocentric) express himself on this topic. (See e.g., Eph 2:10; 2 Cor 8:7-15). -I.e., Particularly with the letter of James (up to ca. 62 A.D.) potentially written just before Paul’s letters of 2 Corinthians (ca. 56 A.D.) and Ephesians (60-62 A.D.).

But they identify themselves as faithful to the fourth command. There are also Seventh Day Baptists, a smaller group that interpret the commandment as permanently binding as well.

Not quite so strict, you could also identify what you would call Christian Sabbatarians. They have decided that as Christians, we must keep the Sabbath but it's not any longer the seventh day, it's the first day. So they shift the command in Exodus from Saturday to Sunday. This is a classic view among reformed theologians. This was the view of many, if not most of the Puritans. In fact, if you go back to the 1689 Baptist Confession, you will find a Christian Sabbatarian article in that Confession, that Christians are to treat Sunday as a new Sabbath and they are to follow, generally, the prescriptions and limitations that were placed upon the old Sabbath.

Always found this “Christian Sabbatarian” stance interesting... (cf. the “Sabbath rest”
questioning here).

And the question before us tonight is, “Are they correct? Is it correct that we should be observing Saturday, the old Sabbath, or perhaps Sunday as a kind of new replacement Sabbath as a holy day, set apart from all other days?”

Well to answer that, we need to go back to Genesis chapter 2, so let's do that...Genesis chapter 2. The chapter opens with the indication that creation is over. And we read these words, “Then the heavens and the earth were completed and all their hosts,” everything that occupies them. “By the seventh day, God completed His work which He had done and He rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had done. Then God blessed the seventh day and sanctified it because in it He rested from all His work which God had created and made.”

You will notice in verse 3 the word “sanctified.” That word is essentially the word holy and this is the first time the word holy is used in the Bible. The root means to separate, or perhaps better, to turn that into a vertical concept, to elevate. It is a separation that elevates or exalts. So here, for the first time, we come across the idea of something being separated by being elevated, that is God designates this seventh day as an exalted day, a day lifted above all other days. And God makes it holy...

So as it is stated in Exod 20:11 the Seventh Day was always a  “Holy Day” going all the
way back to Creation. (Gen 2:2-3)

...and declares it to be so for three reasons. The three reasons are basically connected to the three verbs that make up the text.

First of all, it is a day that is unique because the heavens and the earth were completed and all their hosts. That's the first verb, the whole work of creation was finished. This work of creation was done in six essentially 24-hour days by God and since that close of the sixth day, there has never been any further creation, with the exception of those divine miracles that we have read about occasionally in the Old Testament and the flurry of miracles through the person of the Lord Jesus Christ in which He creates wholeness and wellness within the midst of His now fallen creation. Apart from that, creation ceased on the sixth day. It didn't go on for thousands of years. It didn't go on for millions or billions of years. After six days it was finished, it was completed. And so, this is a special day because it signals that God's entire creation is finished.

Telling that Jesus would mention redemptive and such “healing creative” works as valid
to do on the Sabbath (Matt 12:12)

Secondly is the verb “rested.” When it says in verse 2 that by the seventh day God completed His work which He had done, and He rested, and then in verse 3 again, He rested from all His work which God had created and made, this is a unique day because the creation being completed, God stops and rests. Does not imply weariness, the Lord does not grow weary, Isaiah 40:28, the Psalmist says He doesn't slumber or sleep. He rested only in the sense that He ceased from work, not that He had to replenish His energy. But what it tells us when He rested is really that He was satisfied. And that takes you back to verse 31 of chapter 1, “God saw all that He had made and behold, it was very good.” It was a perfect work and it was the rest of utter satisfaction.

            As explained here, God literally took a actually necessary day off from resuming His creative works in another galaxy that Sunday.

And by the way, there would be no more creation and for a little while there was no more work for God to do. God didn't go to work again until the third chapter of Genesis, not very long, when Adam and Eve fell and God had to go to work. And what was the first thing that God did? Chapter 3 verse 21, “The Lord God made garments of skin for Adam and his wife and clothed them.” And then He drove them out of the Garden.

God did no work between the end of creation and the Fall of man. And with the Fall of man, God's work began again and God had to preserve as Hebrews 1 says, He had to uphold by His power His creation because it was now subject to decay. And so, He went to work to preserve the universe that He had made the creation that He has made and He also went to work to fulfill all aspects necessary in the redemption of that creation.

            The Fall of man has indeed opened up an added work for God, now also redemptive, however God’s work clearly continued as He went on to create other worlds.

Now, you do not hear in those three verses anything about people resting. There's nothing here about man resting, nothing here about Adam resting, and because he was without sin and a perfect man in every sense, there was no depletion of his energies when he was doing whatever the simple tending of the Garden called for. There's no need to have a day of rest for man, what would he rest from? He's living in a paradise with no labor and no sweat and no expended and lost energy.

That is not realistically or scientifically accurate. God did not create man to be Eternally
“self-powered”, as in, if they had not sinned their energy would never have waned. Just the fact that they were to eat even before the fall (Gen 1:11-12, 29, 2:9, 16) involved them inherently and defaultly burning calories (=bodily energy) which thus was replenished. Or else they would immediately become obese. And just the fact that God defaultly incorporated nights in a perfect Creation (Gen 1:5, 14-19), which most certainly is for being most conducive to sleeping, and that for all Creation, is also evidence that man was always to have a period of sleep, which itself is to replenish bodily, especially mental energy.
            Indeed realistic/logical/thoughtful Theological studies bear out that God has had to work from a controlled use of available creative energy in Creation all things, and so has had to implement an energy-wise, self-sustaining/replenishing Creation for it to ever be viable as He would most fully want it to be. And the tangible reason why selfishness/sin is evil, is because it is tangibly detrimental to the viability of that fullest Creation realization.
            So no, Adam was probably not in desperate need of physical rest on that Seventh Day, having only lived for part of the day before, with moreover an anesthetized sleep in between (Gen 2:21), and humans even today can go certainly 24 hours without sleeping, but, as seen later, that does not mean that God’s Sabbath Rest was not applicable to man. At the very least, Adam would be honorarily keeping it like God did, i.e., without even a physical need to rest. And certainly by the next “Saturday” (seventh day), Adam and Eve had plenty of reason to take a day off from their prior six days of various work.
            If anything else, if Adam’s and Eve’s work then was not too tiring, i.e., if still in an Unfallen Creation, their Sabbath Days would be even more enjoyable than compared to people today who find it a perfect day to catch up on all the sleep they missed from the prior 5-6 days of tiring toiling.

There's no Sabbath law given here for Adam none at all.

And, by that standard, there was not any law (i.e., any 10 Commandment) at all given to
Adam and Eve, or anyone else until Exod 20, except the “law” to not eat of the forbidden tree (Gen 2:16-17; 3:3, 17). Yet e.g., when Cain killed Abel, it was a sin, i.e., a transgression of God’s law (1 John 3:4), when Jacob lied and stole Esau’s blessing, it was understood to be a sin (Gen 27:12, 35; cf. 3:13); when Potiphar’s wife tempted Joseph to adultery, he knew it was sin (Gen 39:9); etc... So, though no commandment was ever explicitly stipulated before Exod 20, it is logically understood from such examples that they were all known and in effect from the very beginning.
            As the Bible explains, God adds/gives His Law in order to then explicitly make known to Man what is sinful. (Rom 3;20; 7:7). So it manifestly was because God’s people on the other side of the Egyptian Captivity had, as indeed explicitly, inherently seen in the Manna episode (Exod 16:22-30), forgotten to keep the Sabbath Day holy, -as it most manifestly had been ‘normatively’ done by the Patriarchs since Creation, that God explicitly made it, as well as His other already in effect and enforced Chief/Supreme (~‘Constitutional’ =Exod 31:18; 34:1, 27-28) Commandments, clearly known... upon entering into this binding “agreement/covenant” with a nation which was to represent Him on Earth.

            So God certainly did not “invent” the Sabbath Commandment at Exod 20:8-11; He then just, remindingly, made it also clearly known for/during that formal, contractual agreement!! (cf. this discussion)

Nothing is said about this day being a day of worship. It doesn't say anything about that. It doesn't prescribe anything for anyone. It is isolated completely to God. He completed His creation, satisfied with it, He ceased which is constituting rest and the third verb in verse 3, “He blessed the seventh day.”

            It does not make much sense to believe that the Eternal and Weariless God rested on the Seventh Day of Creation though He had no need to, -(an understanding which, as discussed here, is actually contradictive of Exod 31:17), but His Creation, comparatively finite and feeble Man did not, and that for thousands of years afterwards until Exodus 16/20. God had made the Sabbath Day Holy in Gen 2:2-3 and kept it Holy by not doing any work on it, so how can His Creation have had the right to literally desecrate that day for thousands of years by both ignoring it, and working on it. God does not whimsically or shallowly make things Holy. For Adam and Eve it was probably the day when God/Jesus would bodily, weekly visit, (and, as discussed here about Gen 3:8-9ff) with them evidently having completely thought and surveillance privacy from God), “catch up” with them, which was thus their day of most tangible worship.
            As Jesus later stated, the Sabbath was made for man, thus for their benefit, and so it is hard to believe that God would withhold that “day off” and “day of communion” blessing from the generations of faithful ones prior to the children of Israel. Israel probably lost this weekly benefit and blessing due to the enslaving oppression of the Egyptians, and so, and even prior to the 10 Commandments in Exod 20, it was explicitly brought back to their attention and memory in Exod 16, and again involving them being able to both enjoy a day off from any work, as well as have God miraculously subsistencely sustain them during that day.

He designed that that seventh day would be a special memorial to His creation and its original perfection. This is so important for you to understand. This is a day to be elevated above all other days as a memorial to remember the glory of God's perfection in creation. Every seventh day from here on out would be a reminder that God in six days created the universe in perfection.

That “perfection” qualifier claim is actually not at all stipulated in the Bible. The Bible is
clear that God sanctified the Seventh Day because He had rested on that day. Whether the Creation was perfect (which it was), or not, is not at all a contributing factor. John MacArthur wants to make this significant because he later claims a theology that the Sabbath serves as a reminder of sin, which is actually contrary to his ‘perfection” claim here. Indeed by logical implication, one would have to also believe that since the world lost its perfection at the Fall, then the Sabbath was to be disregarded since then.
            The meaning of the Sabbath is that God wants to emphasize that even in a perfect world, His Creation must not forgot that they are to pause for physical rest, which conveniently is doubled as a day of formal worship of God. (See Isa 66:23). In other words, most fundamental to the viability of God’s Creation is that Man does work six days, however they are to remember that they are to rest and trust in their Creator who would take this time to variously assist them in their livelihood, both physically and also Spiritually.

Have you ever asked yourself why we operate calendars all over the world in sevens? It seems an odd number, does it not? There certainly is no rational reason for coming up with seven, then designating weeks and months and years to be in sets of sevens. It's actually kind of an awkward way to do things, it might be simpler to do them in tens. And yet it is universally adopted across the world and it is unique and it is designed to be unique because every seventh day is a reminder of the power and the glory of God expressed in the magnificence of six-day creation.

For this to be such an entrenched understanding today, it would mean that all, i.e.,
sometime before the Flood, and then renewedly with Noah after the flood, tangibly commemorated the Seventh Day. In other words, if they, as seen today, considered every day alike and worked right through all days, then they would not even have known to delineate a week. Indeed just like a prisoner can lose all sense of days by being too long in solitary confinement where the routine can be quite uniform every day. So people then, especially the faithful, including with Noah and his family, must have specially marked off each week by breaking away from their daily routine and keeping the Sabbath day holy by resting on it. And thus they were able to also entrenched for generations this indeed arbitrary understanding that there should be anything time-wise such a “week”, and that it is to be composed of 7 days. If not for that, it would have been months which would have been considered as weeks, i.e. 28-29 day “weeks”.

To reject God as Creator, to reject God as Creator in six days is to unbless the seventh day. To say that somehow God used thousands of years, millions of years, billions of years is to desanctify the seventh day.

So, from that understanding, Saturday should be kept by all Christians today just as
formally and reverentially as they keep Sunday....and that by also not doing any (non-emergency/vital) work on it for that is what the Bible amply states right from Genesis was the reason it was made “Holy”.
            It relatedly is quite telling that people today work on Sundays because they claim that they need to make money to provide for themselves, but God addressed this in the Sabbath, as He supernaturally took care of His resting people then, including in yearly Sabbath periods. So the issue here then comes to involve if one is trusting more in money and the economy or in the Creator God when they engage in non-emergency/vital work on the Sabbath.

There's a reason why we live in seven-day units and man has always done so and it is because every seventh day provides for us a reminder that God is the Creator who created in six days the entire universe.

If Saturday is to be still considered as having Sabbatical value, then why don’t all
Christians today formally observe it...indeed just as God Himself designed and stipulated that it should be. Which includes “not doing one’s pleasure on that day”. (Isa 58:13) Indeed as Isa 58 states, the Sabbath is to not merely be a day of rest, but it is also a day in which others who cannot have such a rest are helped to be able to obtain it, whether it is in working to meet their needs as Jesus showed, or helping to relieve any burden that they may have. And this naturally would extend into a way of life which would not be limited to merely assisting them on only one day.

In Revelation chapter 14 there is the testimony of the gospel...well, I won't read it to you...the angels flying through heaven and the testimony of the gospel is to acknowledge God as the Creator. It is the ever-lasting good news that God is the Creator. Every seventh day that passes should stand as a testimony to the Creator.

            This is indeed all how the Seventh-day Sabbath is squarely at the heart of the Everlasting Gospel, indeed exactly like Jesus taught and demonstrated about it. It is to contribute to restoring man back to the original ideal of God both physically and Spiritually, indeed by them remembering that God is their Creator (Rev 14:6-7). As it was shown through an to EGW in a vision in 1846 (a time when Charles Darwin theory of Evolution had just taken birth):

“if the true Sabbath had been kept, there would never have been an infidel or an atheist. The observance of the Sabbath would have preserved the world from idolatry. (LS 96.1)”

            And this foundational understanding is indeed what the Great Controversy and Final Showdown which wrap up this Issue of Sin and Rebellion to God squarely revolve on as it is ensuingly stated in Rev 14:8-12ff.

Every Saturday America, the western world with its Christian influences work toward a five-day work week, part of that was the underlying sense that Saturday was a day to enjoy the creation. Saturday is a perpetual witness to God as Creator. Sunday, on the other hand, is a perpetual witness to God as Redeemer. We'll talk more about that next time.

That “perpetual witness to God as Redeemer” claim for Sunday will be Biblically,
Theologically and historically examined later, indeed to see if God’s Sabbath does not already also account for that Redemptive memorializing.

So, when you go back to Genesis chapter 2, there's no mention of Sabbath being a law. No mention of Sabbath being a day of worship. The next time you even run into the word is in Exodus 16. Hundreds of years have passed, patriarchs have come and gone, none of them worshiped, as far as we know, on the Sabbath. That was designated for them, it was not prescribed for them, it was not mandated for them, not Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph and the rest of the people of God.

Again, (except arguably for Gen 9:6 which was not limited to “murder”), none of the
later (i.e., Exod 20) stated Ten Commandments are ever explicitly/pointedly “designated” “prescribed” or “mandated” before Exod 20 (with the Sabbath itself actually mentioned before in Exod 16), yet all lived according to those laws as if they were already well known. It is thus most logical to understand that the Sabbath, with pointedly its basis in Creation and Weekly rest from work would also have been observed by followers of God since it was first established in Eden.
            There is also a chronological argument that, with many validly believe that Moses-authored the book of Genesis while he was a fugitive and shepherd within 40 years before leading Israel out of Egypt, then him mentioning the Sabbath in Gen 2:2-3 is added corroboration that it was clearly known well before the later Exod 16 mention.

The first time the Sabbath is mentioned in some significant way is in the sixteenth chapter of Exodus when God feeds the people manna from heaven as they wander in the wilderness and the manna comes every day except the Sabbath day and the day before they get enough for that day so that they don't have to work on that day. And that gives them a little preview of what's coming because in the twentieth chapter you have the Ten Commandments and in the Ten Commandments, which I just read to you, prescriptions are given that do set down laws for the Sabbath day. This is the first time any such laws have been given by God.

There are a couple of paramount, overarching theme that should be taking into
consideration here to best understand this issue of God’s Sabbath.
            The first is that, succinctly mentioned now, God ‘“gives” as a blessing, His Sabbath to His people’ (Exod 16:29; cf. 31:13, 17). Literally He, unlike the enslaving world (cf. Deut 5:15), grants a day off from work to His people. And also provides a Theological/Spiritual blessing to His People through that day which will help them find “rest” in His Truth.
            Secondly there is the issue that the NT Church is, as the Bible plainly teaches, God’s (Spiritual) Israel today (see here), and so it is only natural that God would likewise also/continue to “give” His, actually multi-faceted (i.e., more than just a day off) ‘Sabbath gift’ to them, as actually fundamentally involved in the ‘remaining Sabbath Rest’ statement in Heb 4:9.
            So in Exod 16, God would have, at the very least, reminded Israel of the Sabbath day, which they probably had not kept in over 4 generations, and thus forgotten about, while slaves in Egypt. (Cf. Exod 16:23-26).

This is very important so that we understand that the Sabbath was not instituted for man in Genesis. It was instituted officially in Exodus in the Law of Moses.

            Though seemingly glibly claimed here, the “Law of Moses” is completely distinct from the Ten Commandment Law of God. The “Law of Moses” included civil and ceremonial laws and was written by Moses on parchment and placed at the side ark (Deut 31:24-26 = Eph 2:15; Col 2:14), while the Ten Commandment Law of God, which of course included the Seventh Day Sabbath Commandment itself, was the Moral Law, -(and, contrary to a later claim by MacArthur, whatever God therein deems to be “Moral” is thus “Moral”), and was written by the finger of God (Exod 31:18; 32:15-16), on tables of Stone and placed, and as part of a perpetual covenant (cf. Exod 31:16b) inside the Ark of the Covenant. (Deut 10:1-5; Exod 40:20; 1 Kgs 8:9)
            The Ten Commandments, including the Sabbath, were foundational to the Law of Moses “Old Covenant” (cf. Jer 31:31-34) made with God’s Israel then.
            So with no logically valid reason to not understand that God’s Creation-week created Sabbath was not always known to be part of His Moral Law, it can only be understood that God inherently, fundamentally included this Sabbath Day Rest when He would enter into a special covenant with now the descendants of Abraham. In other words, in this “binding contract” as to what God would do for Israel if they kept their part of this national covenant, the Sabbath as well as the other Ten Commandments, served as the cornerstone basis. It therefore was not here created as something which should only now be observed, but merely reminded, as were the other Ten Commandment as something which should continue to be considered as God’s Truth.

 A further understanding of that comes from Exodus chapter 31, you might want to look at it for a minute. The Lord speaks to Moses in verse 12 and He says to him, “As for you, speak to the sons of Israel saying,'You shall surely observe My Sabbaths for this is a sign between Me and you throughout your generations that you may know that I am the Lord who sanctifies you. Therefore you are to observe the Sabbaths, the Sabbath because it is holy to you. Everyone who profanes it shall surely be put to death, for whoever does any work on it, that person shall be cut off from among his people. For six days work may be done but on the seventh day there is a Sabbath of complete rest, holy to the Lord. Whoever does any work on the Sabbath day shall surely be put to death. So the sons of Israel shall observe the Sabbath to celebrate the Sabbath throughout their generations as a perpetual covenant. It is a sign between Me and the sons of Israel forever.”

(Discussed above)

Why? “For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, but on the seventh day He ceased and was refreshed, or rested.”

(See the noted statement near the end in here about this “refreshed” specification (=Exod
23:12).)

Here we find that Sabbath is a sign..it is a sign. That is to say, it points to something else. It is a symbol, if you will. It is placed in the middle, or near the middle of the Ten Commandments because it is a symbol connected to the Mosaic covenant.

On one hand it is quite significant to understand that the Sabbath is indeed a sign, for,
since a sign can point to a “seal” (Rom 4:11), that comes to substantiate the prophetic understanding that the eschatological “Seal of God” (Rev 7:2-3; 9:4 (cf. Ezek 9:4)) squarely involves His Sabbatical Truth and being Spiritually entrenched in its full meaning.
            The Bible itself clearly states what God’s Sabbath(s) is a sign of in Ezek 20:20. They are a sign that God is the Lord of His People. Indeed observing it reflects that one believes in the Creator God. (Exod 20:8-11). As an example, and myself having lived in both the U.S. and Canada, once I moved back to Canada from the U.S. I no longer, in any way, observed (e.g., take the day off) days which were specific “holidays” to the U.S. such as Independence Day (July 4), President’s Day, Memorial Day, even American Thanksgiving, etc. but instead then observed days which were specific to Canada (e.g., Canada Day (July 1), Victoria Day, Saint-Jean-Baptiste Day (for Quebec); October Thanksgiving, etc). These observances, especially by not working on those days, are what most culturally distinguished me as a Canadian. And if I instead strictly kept American holidays while living in Canada, then one could easily say that I was an American or one who preferred to be an American. And even if I kept both, that too would blur my true national identity/allegiance.
            So similarly, it was the observance of God Sabbath(s) which distinguished the nation of Israel as the people of the Creator God, and continues to do so with those who are now Spiritually part of Israel, who still observe this Seventh Day Sabbath as the Ten Commandments state. The “Law of Moses” Sabbatical Feasts further provided to the national identity “sign” of Ancient Israel, and as these are fulfilled in Christ and His redemptive work, then believing in Christ is the perfect substitute of them, and what they meant. The Seventh-Day Sabbath however distinctly continues to point to the fact that God, through Jesus Christ, created this world and the Universe.

            (The location of the Sabbath in the, quite noticeable, pivotal midst/heart, of the Ten Commandment has not factually determinative of being “connected to the Mosaic covenant, as MacArthur claims above.)

Let me see if I can help you with that. When God made a covenant with Noah, He promised Noah that He would never destroy the world again and God identified a sign. What was the sign of the Noahic Covenant? Rainbow. When God made a covenant with Abraham, He made that covenant with Abraham and He designated a sign and the sign of the Abrahamic Covenant, participation among the covenant people Israel, was the sign of circumcision. And here you have in the Mosaic Covenant another sign and the sign this time is the Sabbath. It was only a sign.

There is a key conflating error in the ‘covenant sign comparison above’. Succinctly said,
God has made, as long promised, a New Covenant with the House of Israel (Heb 8:7-13). It is one that is based on the better promises of observance in Jesus Christ, but it is still one which in includes God’s Ten Commandment Law so that His now Spirit led people can still now what is considered sinful by God (Rom 3:20; 7:7-16), and that at a much higher Spiritual/Righteous level (Matt 5:17-20ff; Rom 7:6ff) -a knowledge which helps them to be able to have applied the Covenant promise/benefits secured by Christ. (Heb 10:26-27).
            As discussed above, the Sabbath itself continues to point to the fact that God is Creator and those who observe this Creation Week institution outwardly reveal/declare that they still, and only, believe in the Creator God.

Observing it with the duplicitous heart gained nothing. In fact, Isaiah 1:13 says, “Bring your worthless offerings no longer, incense is an abomination to Me, new moon and Sabbath.”
The prophet Hosea pronounces a similar judgment on their hypocritical Sabbaths. “I will put an end to all her gaiety, her feasts, her new moons, or Sabbaths.” It didn't mean anything to observe it outwardly without a heart of love and devotion to God.

Actually anything that is hypocritically religiously done involves the same
condemnation, and not just Sabbath Keeping (e.g., Rom 2:25ff)...And pointedly in Isa 1, God’s rejection of Israel Sabbath-keeping was squarely for the same socio-economic injustices and negligence reasons addressed in Isa 58! (see Isa 1:16-17).

But what was the symbol for? What was the sign for? Why this sign? I think you'll understand this when I explain it. The Sabbath was a reminder of creation. The Sabbath was to remind the people of Israel that they had forfeited paradise, that man had forfeited paradise. The Law said to them, “Obey this Law and you will be blessed.” God said that repeatedly, “Obey this Law and you will be blessed,” to show them that righteous behavior would restore a taste of Eden's paradise, righteous behavior would also point to a future, a future Kingdom when paradise would be regained.

            I just cannot at all “understand” how John MacArthur makes this, arbitrary and effectively whimsical, leap that: “the Sabbath was to remind the people of Israel that they had forfeited paradise, that man had forfeited paradise”.
            The Bible rather says and shows that: the Sabbath in Genesis was for a perfect Creation, and it was made holy by God because He rested on that day. The “sign” of the Sabbath was to show that the Creator was the Lord of those who observed it; - a God who moreover was working to sanctify these people, thus leading them back to the Perfect State of existence as/if they remained faithful to Him. So the Sabbath was a sign of what God had Creatingly done and was now Redeemingly doing for this World and not at all ‘a reminder of the Fall’. Instead many examples of its application in National Israel showed how they were to variously ‘rest in God”, = have faith in Him, and not in their own strength and works, if they were ever going to regain the initial full life and blessing that God had in mind for people on this planet.

So the Sabbath...every Sabbath that went by when they rested, they were reminded of a perfect creation, a paradise of God dominated by righteousness which had been forfeited by sin and could only be regained again by righteousness.
More specifically, the inherent resting observance of the Sabbath reflected the fact that it
was only by faith in God and His ways, (with the Sabbath surfacely seeming to be the most arbitrary of any of His Laws), that perfection, peace and joy would be maintained.

God then institutes the seventh-day system, not for everybody in the world. In fact, specifically it says for Israel. Verse 17, “A sign between Me and the sons of Israel forever.” Every seventh day was a reminder that they were living in a fallen world. Every seventh day was a reminder that they had lost paradise. And the only way to regain a taste of paradise was obedience to God, righteousness. And they therefore were to consider the importance of obeying the Ten Commandments, they were to consider the importance on that seventh day of examining their own lives and looking at how they were measuring up against the Law of God, recognizing sin was the objective, and bringing them to repentance.

            Just by the fact that God Himself supernaturally provided for 40 years an equal/full serving of manna for the Seventh-Day Sabbath was proof enough that He never intended that day itself to be a day of Fasting and gloom as (post-exilic era) Jewish Tradition later “ala. Pharisaically, and also hypocritically” made it to be. (e.g., Isa 58:3-6ff). It was instead to be a day of (communal) feasting. Indeed God’s Sabbatical events/cycles were associated with great, solemnly joyful “celebrations” like debt liberation (Deut 15:1ff), Harvest (Deut 16:10-11), Divine Provision (Deut 16:13-15), and “Jubilee” (Lev 25:10-22). So similarly, the weekly Sabbath Day itself was likewise not associated with the privation and penitence needed for a ‘season of repentance’ as claimed here. The people were only asked to stop the working and instead joyfully trust in, and worship, God. Only the one day, annual, “Day of Atonement” “Sabbath” was a purely solemn and contrition day of thorough repentance.

So the first seventh day identified God as Creator, but the institution of the Sabbath in the Mosaic economy identified God as the Law-giver. The first view was to produce gratitude for the wonder of creation. The second, to produce repentance, for the forfeiture of all that is right. And so, the Sabbath took on a new meaning. Yes it still is a reminder that God created, but it's a reminder that the creation of God which was originally perfect is now marred and we are marred and the realm of His creation is stained by sin and we are stained by sin and the creation, as Paul puts it, is groaning and we are groaning as well.

This ‘reminder of the fallen world’ claim is again a purely whimsical one by MacArthur.
Frankly it is akin to the disdaining arguments made against the Seventh-day Sabbath in  Church History when it was actually gradually abandoned by early Christians in favor of only observing Sunday and not both Saturday and Sunday. MacArthur also glibly conflates the festival sabbaths, (which were actually merely days which were to be observed as the Seventh Day Sabbath was (E.g., Lev 23:26-28, 30-32, 34-36), thus with no work and a holy convocation), and the distinct, Ten Commandment stated, Seventh Day Sabbath.

 The sign in the middle of the Abrahamic Covenant of circumcision was a way to say you need to be clean, you need to be cleansed. And the sign here, Sabbath, in the middle of the Ten Commandments essentially said the same thing, you need to recognize that you have forfeited paradise and the only way to regain it is to be righteous. Obviously they couldn't keep the Law, but they were to be driven in penitence to plead with God to be merciful to them as sinners.

            Actually studies showed that the sign of circumcision given to Abraham was also to most emblematically reflect the faith that he and his descendants should have had towards God and His Promises and not, as Abraham did, trusting in their own ways and works. (See Gal 4:22-23, 29-31).

So we understand that this was unique for the people of Israel. And as I said this morning, when Jesus came, everything changed....everything changed. You remember that I told you this morning that what He did was not a cleansing of the temple, it was an abolishing of the temple? He didn't just want to eliminate the bad priests and keep the good priests. He eliminated the priesthood. He didn't just want to clean up the people's attitudes as they gave their sacrifices, He obliterated the sacrificial system because He brought an end to Judaism with all its ceremonies, all its rituals, all its sacrifices, all of its external trappings, the Temple, the Holy of Holies, all of it...including the Sabbath...including the Sabbath. The Sabbath observance went away with all the rest that belonged to Judaism.

            Summarily said here: as part of the Ten Commandments, the weekly Seventh Day Sabbath is not ‘inclusively limited to’ Jews/Judaism.
            But in more theological detailing:

-Jesus came to antitypologically fulfill what was always supposed to be so surpassed. This was the ceremonial aspects in the Law of Moses, as well as the immediate death penalties in the Old Covenant and its purposeful/due “ministry of death” (=2 Cor 3:6-11ff; Gal 3:10) (e.g., John 8:1-11). And now this still applicable death penalty, whether immediate or annually (i.e., at the Day of Atonement (Lev 23:29, 32a)) was commuted by now applicably available, through Christ, Grace, with the possibility of being expunged if the offender is truly/enduringly repentant.

-Of course, the Temple and its services was to be antypologically superceded by the Sacrifice and Ministry of Jesus Himself, then, as the book of Hebrews and Bible Prophecy teach, His two-part (Daily) Holy Place, and then (Eschatological Day of Atonement) Most Holy Place (e.g., Dan 7:9-10, 13-14, 21-22, 25-27; 8:14) Heavenly Ministry, and made tangibly effective on this Earth through His “body”, the New Covenant Church.

-Unlike the many “passing”, and also outrightly unbiblical things, which Jesus openly addressed and opposed as necessary and pertinent, he never did this with either the day, or the Commandment of the Seventh-day Sabbath, and that despite many instances where he could have done so. Instead Jesus opposed the Pharisaical heresies which had been piled onto it while he still “customarily” (Luke 4:16) observed it. And the reform that Jesus brought here was not in changing its meaning, or its observance day, but in showing what it was always meant to be: a day to provide any applicable rest and release to those in various need (Luke 13:16) and to do good (Matt 12:12)...And if Jesus actually had wanted to “break the Sabbath”, thus showing, as most Christians claim and practice today, that it is permissible to do the same now, He would have at any time on that day, done a purely secular/self-providing “work” on that day such as: taking his disciples and going (commercial) fishing!! Instead Jesus did the type of work that was permitted on the Sabbath, namely: ‘various necessary rest-providing good work.’

-As within the Sermon on the Mount (Matt 5:17-30), and at other times during His ministry (e.g, Matt 15:1-6; 23:20-22), Jesus did this Spiritual reformation with all of the Ten Commandments, including the Sabbath, and did not teach that the letter of any of those Ten Commandments should be altered in any way. (Cf. Luke 18:18-22ff)

We begin to understand this by watching Jesus and how He treated the Sabbath. How did Jesus treat the Sabbath? I've said this before, any way He wanted, absolutely any way He wanted. He is the mediator, we know, of a New Covenant, a better covenant. It's important to notice that just as He obliterated the sacrificial system, He obliterated the Sabbath system.

It is quite “traditional” for Sundaykeepers to defensively claim that ‘Jesus broke the
Biblical Sabbath’, but that is not at all the factual case. (Cf. Gal 4:4-5; John 8:46). As stated above, Jesus did not at all “obliterate” the Biblical Sabbath. He instead restored it to its original meanings. And if Jesus actually did anything “sovereign” with it as the “Lord of the Sabbath”, He actually rightly incorporated all of the “sabbatical” provisions and benefits that God had given throughout the Law of Moses into it. Yet God had long explicitly stated in Isa 58 that ‘doing good’ and ‘helping anyone in vital need’ was always supposed to be part of God’s Sabbath.

Now you may recall that we looked at this in specifics in Mark, but let's look at several other passages to consider this because this is the heart of our message to you tonight. Look at Matthew 12...Matthew chapter 12, verse 1, Jesus went through the green fields on the Sabbath, His disciples became hungry, began to pick the heads of grain and eat. By the way, there was actually no Old Testament law forbidding them to do that, in fact it was allowed. But the Jews had added endless restrictions to the Old Testament.

As MacArthur states himself here, Jesus and His disciples did not violate any OT Law
about Sabbath keeping here. It is telling to see how this view that “Jesus broke the Sabbath” is actually a house of cards which was originally based on spurious accusations of Sabbath breaking by the Jews in Christ’s day which were actually all not Biblically valid. And when Sunday-keepers realized this fact, they however still continue to hold some degree of that prior baseless argument.
            So actually is the ‘persisted straw-man basis’ of Sunday-keepers as all of their prior Bible and History claims have by now all been debunked, yet they still continue to hold on to the hollow belief of Apostolic/NT-established Sunday Sacredness.

“So when the Pharisees saw this they said to Him, ‘Look, Your disciples do what is not lawful to do on the Sabbath.' He said to them, ‘Have you not read what David did?'”

Interestingly enough here, as Jesus enjoining answer seems to actually imply, if the
Pharisees’ accusation was actually based on the OT manna collecting precedence where it was unlawful for the people to go out to the fields to simply collect manna (if it had actually fallen) to eat, it can actually be disculpatingly argued, as Jesus seems to have done here, that this was here an emergency situation and unlike those in the wilderness, He and His dependent disciples, who perhaps had not eaten well, or at all, for a prolonged time then, did not have a chance to provide for a Sabbath meal the day before. And as Jesus could easily have gone to someone house and have them feed Him, as this would probably be much greater work for them, getting food from that field themselves was the far better option. Or even yet, this field was perhaps the closest thing to any revitalization that they would encounter for the rest of that day.
            (And, noticing that Jesus was not accused of theft here, with this Matt 12 episode manifestly occurring in the first year of His public ministry (thus between April 28 A.D, and April 29 A.D. (cf. in here)), and, as chronologies show, 27 A.D had been a seventh/sabbatical year, then the sabbatical provision for the poor (Exod 23:10-11; Lev 25:1-7ff) was evidently seen to also allow for this free procurement. And this all showed that Jesus and His disciples were indeed in genuine need and thus were probably starvingly hungry then (Matt 12:1).

You think this is bad? “When he became hungry, he and his companions entered the house of God and ate the consecrated show bread which was not lawful for him to eat, nor for those with him, but for the priests alone?”
            I'll even give you something worse. David and his men ate the show bread. “Or have you not read in the Law that on the Sabbath the priests in the temple break the Sabbath and are innocent?” You all make a big issue out of not working on the Sabbath. Guess what...while you're not working, all the priests are working, carrying out all the offerings and all the sacrifices.

            These examples that Jesus gave here with David and the Sabbath-Ministering Priests, both pertinently involved that it was an urgent situation, and for needy people, and indeed that ‘God never intended for His laws and ceremonies to trump saving and sustaining, both physical and also Spiritual life.’ (=Matt 12:7) So refusing to meet these genuine needs of other because of the Sabbath (e.g., not providing hospital service or broadcasting religious programming on the Sabbath) would be contrary to God’s “Sabbatical will”.
            Jesus did not at all break or “obliterate” God’s Biblical Sabbath here...He instead showed what it, and God’s Will in general, were always supposed to be conducive to, and provide for.

Which reminds us that this law is not moral, it's symbolic.

Again, exposing this patent “house of card”/straw-man rationalizing here, Jesus did not
“break” the Biblical Sabbath Law, and moreover, as stated above, with God having made the Seventh Day Sabbath a part of the Ten Commandment Moral Law, then He Himself established it as “Moral”, and again, involving the same self-deeming authority of God for any of the first 5, actually all 10 Commandments, for, as fully discussed in regards the based-upon, spurious COG view, violating any of them does not actually involve an inherent detriment to the violator, were it but for what God had decided  would not be “morally” acceptable, pointedly for the More abundant life that He wants to equally provide for as many people as possible.

So Jesus rather than acquiescing to their concern over a violation of the Sabbath, points to other violations of the Sabbath.

These were not example of “violations” per se, but exceptional, even systematic
allowances within the realm of God’s Just Laws.

In verse 8, He says, “The Son of Man is Lord of the Sabbath.” He can do anything He wants with the Sabbath. He can institute it. He can make commands for restrictions. He can require death for violation of those commands, as in the Mosaic Law, or He can set it aside totally. He can abrogate it. He can nullify it. And there is the transition that is taking place in the New Testament. As Jesus arrives, everything that is part of the system of Judaism is coming to its end.

            Actually, exegetically and Theologically speaking here, that is not at all the case. Matt 12:8 starts with the word “For” (Greek “gar”) because Jesus was sequiturly saying that he likewise is “innocent”. Jesus was rather veiledly stating here that as also the “Lord of the Sabbath”, He had a very good idea of exactly what was permissible to do on that day...I.e., After all, He is the one who instituted it.
            So it is not at all that ‘He can (whimsically) nullify this Commandment’, or it would thus have never been validly “morally” based, as would be the case if Jesus nullified any of the other Ten Commandments.
            And this understanding is actually well corroborated by exactly the spurious “morality” distinction that MacArthur endeavors to make here with the Sabbath vs. the other 9 Commandment. Jesus did say that it was a special gift to Man, i.e., made at Creation (Gen 2:2-3).
            My own theological view/understanding is that it may not have (at least explicitly/structuredly) existed prior to the end of Creation in Heaven before that, and was only first established on that 7th Day of Human Creation. And that is because God had in the Creation of man, begun a whole new realm of Creating where, if this Creation of “flesh and bone” (and also self-reproducing) humans and (physical) worlds for them to inhabit (versus spirit angels living in Heaven’s realm), would ever be fully viably sustainable, He would have to have them, unlike (defaultly) for angels, -(see in here), do various manual/physical work in order to renewably sustain themselves and upkeep this planet. So with that ‘work necessity’ God, and from evidently His own ‘experienced need’ (Exod 31:17; -as exegetically shown in here), saw that a weekly “day off” was good for man, and so created and sanctified the Seventh Day for that purpose. So this is from what Jesus rightly said that “the Sabbath was made for man” and not vice versa. I.e. to actually ‘keep/sustain man’, including, pausingly, psychologically/Spiritually (cf. Isa 58:13), and not for man to, moreover taxed themselves to, keep/sustain it. But again, with God later making it formally a part of the Ten Commandments, then it, at the very least even if only then, became an Eternal, Moral and binding requirement. And, contrary to MacArthur’s manifest indifferent conflations on this point, Jesus actually never acted to “obliterate or nullify it, i.e., how God had ‘man benefittingly’ established, and intent for, it. Rather, indeed as Jesus did with all of the Commandments throughout His ministry, He, also in Righteousness, ‘reformed, honored and magnified’ (=Isa 42:21) that, likewise since, humanly/Pharisaically downtrodden, “loopholed” and perverted, moral mandate of the Decalogue. (Matt 5:17-20)

Look in Luke chapter 14...Luke chapter 14. Again it's in verse 1, “It happened that when He went into the house of one of the leaders of the Pharisees on the Sabbath to eat bread, they were watching Him closely and there in front of them was a man suffering from dropsy. And Jesus answered and spoke to the lawyers and Pharisees saying, ‘Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath or not?' But they kept silent. He took hold of him and healed him, sent him away. And He said to them, ‘Which of you will have a son or an ox fall into a well and will not immediately pull him out on a Sabbath day?' And they could make no reply to this.”

They thought healing someone was a violation of the Sabbath. Jesus appears to have chosen the Sabbath day for His healing purposely because it struck a blow at this symbol. Jesus is announcing the end of the Sabbath. By the way, healing was no violation of Sabbath law, the Old Testament doesn't indicate that. But then again, healing didn't happen.

How convultedly, conflatingly and indifferently confused!! (1) Healing was not a
violation of the Sabbath, so, quite non-sequitur and circular enough, Jesus was not here ‘purposely acting to strike of blow at this symbol’. Jesus deliberately did this to most tangibly showed that it was lawful to heal on the Sabbath, for, just as when He had healed a “sinful” man  (Mark 2:10-12), Jesus wanted to validate His statement that He was also Lord of the Sabbath. And performing a (actually at least 7) healing miracles, which all these Jewish leaders (at least initially only) believed that only God could do (before they evidently adapted their belief to oppose Jesus (Matt 12:22-30)) on that day would be great evidence that Jesus’ Sabbath reforms were indeed from God, as they indeed agree with what the OT also taught about God’s Sabbath. (Isa 58). (Cf. this 2008 "Sabbath Reform" sermon by Stephen Bohr)

            ...And: ‘healing didn’t happen in the OT’ really John.....(I know that MacArthur has famously spent 40 years of his pastoral/teaching ministry expounding on the NT, but he surely has read the OT. (E.g, Num 21:8-9; 1 Kgs 17:17-24; 2 Kgs 4:13-37; 5:1-14; 13:21;  20:1-7)

In Mark chapter 2, let's go back to that chapter where we first began to look at this recently. He is passing through a grain field on a Sabbath. His disciples begin to make their way while picking the heads of grain. The same account is in Matthew. Pharisees say to Him, “Look, why are they doing this? It's not lawful on the Sabbath.” Then He goes through the illustration of David and etc., and comes down in verse 27 to, “The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath. The Son of Man is Lord even of the Sabbath.”
            Mark’s account is slightly different from Matthew’s, but the “punch-line” point is still the same. In Mark 2:27-28 Jesus said, as seen from the verse/statement subordinatedly conjuncted in Mark 2:28 by “so that/and so” (Greek: hostes #5620) that: “because the Sabbath had been made for the benefit of man, indeed as taught in the OT (Isa 58), including the thematically derived Sabbatical Laws/Provisions, the (prophesied) Son of Man (i.e., the Heavenly one who would be born among men to save them*), then, by literally being the Chiefest of men, (=“Son of Man”) He surely is “Lord even/also of the Sabbath.’ And like it is popularly, rightly responded to on this common objection, Jesus indeed did not say that ‘the Sabbath was made for Jews’ or else He would have correspondingly enjoined by instead saying: ‘and so the “king of Jews” (cf. Matt 2:2; Luke 1:32) is also Lord/“King” of the Sabbath.’

* [And, actually not at all determinative here, but given the most Messianically-typological and pivotal revelations, message and ministering of Ezekiel who is called “son of man” over 90x, I have my own tentative angelic-incarnational suspicions/views about him. (E.g, Ezek 9; cf. the NT related Rev 7:1-3 episode in this post.)]

God designed the Sabbath to be a blessing, to bring rest, to bring a day in the week when you could thank God for the glory of His creation and also be made aware that paradise had been lost. It was a day to show gratitude for the creation and a day to repent, to seek forgiveness. It was right in the middle of the Law because they lived in violation of that Law if not actively in their hearts. As Jesus said, “If you do these things in your heart, it's as if you've committed these sins,” in the Sermon on the Mount.

Again this claim is convolutedly and conflatedly circular and confused. Any
valid point made about the Sabbath being a blessing is sunk by MacArthur’s tacked on spurious claims that the Sabbath Commandment specifically was meant to point to the fall and falleness of Man. Case in point: As Jesus showed in the Sermon on the Mount, Spiritually violating any other the explicitly cited Ten Commandments there was also sin....so did that then make these Laws ‘not moral’ or ‘symbolic/ceremonial’.
            When one fully studies out the meaning and eternal implication of God’s Sabbath rest, (something which SDA’s do not even understand), then it is easy to see how “moral” it is, and in fact, how central it is to God’s ‘Loving and Abundant Life’ Universal Order. (cf. DA 20.1-21.3). In fact, as it can also be seen from here, violating its (Spiritual, socio-economic) rest, aid and healing/refreshing principle leads to the violation of all of God’s Commandment.

So our Lord has given the Sabbath to be a blessing to man, to give him rest from his work, a taste of Eden where all was rest before the Fall, to give him an opportunity to thank God for the creation

            As stated earlier, even in a perfect world, Man was still to work for six days. Perhaps only Eden would be so specially arranged by God Himself. Thus others to be born, (who also would not have the Earth-regnal duties of Adam), would probably be quite busy building up and also upkeeping, their granted, own, but self-built, Edenic estates.

and then to examine his life against the Law. And seeing the sin there, seek for forgiveness and mercy and the result in joy and peace and salvation. Again He is Lord of the Sabbath. He is greater than the Sabbath. The Sabbath will be whatever He desires it to be, whatever He designs it to be, nothing more and nothing less. It is not moral, it wasn't even given until the time of Moses and abrogated in the time of Christ.

            The Bible actually instead clearly states that all/any Law given by God, especially all/any of the Ten Commandments, and not just the Sabbath as MacArthur dichotomically and vacuously, fundamentally claims here, is meant to do this ‘pointing out of sin’. (e.g., Rom 3:20; 4:15; 5:13, 20; 7:7).

Turn to John 5. Opposition to Jesus is smoldering under the surface at this time, but this particular healing brought it out in the open. There's a feast of the Jews, we're not sure exactly which but we could call it a festival or a Sabbath feast. There is in Jerusalem by the Sheep Gate a pool which is called in Hebrew Bethesda, having five porticos. And then it says, “In these lay a multitude of those who were sick, blind, lame, withered, waiting for the moving of the water. Some dispute over the authenticity of this particular portion there. An angel of the Lord went down at certain seasons into the pool, and so forth. Part of verse 3 and 4 may have been added later, that's why they have little brackets there.

But in verse 5, this picks up the original text. “A man was there who had been ill for 38 years. When Jesus saw him lying there, He knew that he had already been a long time in that condition. He said to him, ‘Do you wish to get well?' The sick man answered Him, “Sir, I have no man to put me into the pool when the water is stirred up, but while I am coming, another steps down before me.'” This was probably some kind of a superstitious idea that the first one in the water when the ripples came got healed. “And Jesus said to him, ‘Get up, pick up your pallet and walk.'” Very light straw mat could be rolled up under his shoulder. “Immediately the man became well,” in verse 9, “picked up his pallet, began to walk.” Here's the rub. “Now it was a Sabbath that day.”

Old Testament Law didn't forbid walking, didn't forbid carrying your pallet from one place to another. But rabbinic tradition had formulated, I don't know, some say nearly 40 different forbidden activities...you see them in the Mishnah, one of which was carrying your mat. So Jesus had him violate the Sabbath.

...No.... Jesus had him violate those tacked on, spurious Rabbinical laws...Seriously, I just
don’t get, except for deliberately insinuative ‘confusing’ misleading, this indifferent conflating by MacArthur of actually explicitly self-expressed understanding as to what was and was not Biblically valid here in regards to the Sabbath!!

He didn't have to heal the man on the Sabbath.

            No law/statement of God prevented him from doing that, in fact quite to the contrary, healing on the Sabbath was actually greatly advocated by God (Isa 58:6-7)...and that is exactly what was Jesus’ point.

He didn't have to command the man to do something that violated their Sabbath sensibilities. But He did it and He did it purposely.

            So now MacArthur goes back to, ‘out of the same mouth’ contrarily clearly express the real “violation” i.e., of human traditions, that was being done here. I just cannot see why the insinuatively disparaging notion that “Jesus violated the Sabbath” just cannot be completely abandoned. Frankly it is like repeatedly elsewhere likewise claiming that Jesus violated any other truth by not having conformed Himself to the traditions of these Jewish leaders.

Verse 15 says, “The man went away, told the Jews that it was Jesus who had made him well. For this reason the Jews were persecuting Jesus because He was doing these things on the Sabbath.”

Jesus would never violate the Ten Commandments. Jesus would never violate the Law of God. He is holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners. But Jesus did anything He wanted on the Sabbath and in the sight of the leaders in the doing of it because it was part of bringing down that whole system.

Whatever...That statement is all the fruit/result of MacArthur’s indifferently confused
theology...The (Seventh Day) Sabbath (and as God fully intent it to be) is part of the Ten Commandments...It was not limited to a “Judaic system”, and certainly not ever the outrightly unbiblical ‘Pharisaical Judaism system.’ There is nothing that MacArthur, or any other man can do to change these biblical/theological/historical fact. And, frankly, in the light of such wanton claims by someone who can/should know and do better, ‘thinking or endeavoring to do so is prophetically shown to just be part of the ‘Antichrist/Man of Sin’ “lawlessness” (= James 2:10-12) spirit (Dan 7:25), especially through such willful indifference (cf. 2 Thess 2:7-12).

In verse 17, He goes even beyond that and defends what He did by saying this, “My Father is working until now and I Myself am working.”

            This is just like Jesus statement in Matt 12:5 which showed that the priests were quite busy in doing their necessary, typological “redemptive work” also on the Sabbath, and in many cases, even more so on “Sabbaths” compared to other days. So, antitypically speaking, God and Jesus were also busy at work in redeeming/saving & healing (same Greek root word “sozo”) on the Sabbath, which was indeed meant to provides such ‘refreshing’ benefits to man, even, or rather, especially, after the Fall. So the Sabbath was not meant to ‘remind people of sin or the Fall’, as MacArthur fundamentally claims, but completely to the opposite, indeed as Jesus proactively did through such healings also on the Sabbath, and sought to concretely and validately demonstrate, do something about overturning and ending sin and its detrimental ravages. In other words: the Godhead won’t leave people in actual need unattended/unassisted/unaided on any other day, or ‘because of their Law’ (Luke 10:25-37) and especially not on their/man’s Sabbath.
            And if, as claim by MacArthur here, the “work” that Jesus was doing here was ‘violating God’s Own Sabbath’, then the ‘similar’ “work” the He said the Father had all along been doing (i.e., since the Fall, since God had priorly rested on the Sabbath (Gen 2:2-3/Exod 31:17), the God Himself had always been violating His own Sabbath/Law. This “work” here was not anti-Sabbatical works.
            (Furthermore I hear that Jews actually believe that the Law allows for the violation of any of its stipulation if a (just/righteous) life will be saved.)

Wow, this is a claim to be deity. My Father and I are doing our work before your eyes.

            ..And that “Divine “work”’ was indeed squarely, jointly redemptive & healing (Luke 4:16-21|Isa 61:1-2ff; cf. John 10:22-38)

We are working. “For this reason, therefore...verse 18...the Jews were seeking all the more to kill Him because He not only was breaking the Sabbath, but also was calling God His own Father, making Himself equal with God. He was calling Himself...He was calling, I should say, God His Father, and continually involved in activities that violated Sabbath law.
The Pharisees charged Jesus with breaking the Sabbath law, making Himself equal with God and this led them to kill Him eventually.

...Violating the Spiritually bankrupt and unbiblical Sabbath traditions of these Jewish
leaders. (cf. Matt 15:3). To claim otherwise in any degree is to actually also ascribe to these heresy...and I indeed can’t understand how and why anyone would be seen, or even misunderstood, to ever be doing this.

Jesus never attempted to fit His activities into the Sabbath law of the Old Covenant.

            ...Ohhhh He certainly did...I.e., as fully taught in the Old Covenant Isa 58; cf. Deut 15:1-11, and also made it even more widely/righteously applicable (=Matt 5:17-20) for the long planned Laws transference of the Letter, and now especially Spirit, of God’s Law as the basis the New Covenant (Jer 31:31-34|Heb 8:7-13; 10:14-16; 2 Cor 3:4-18) to not only be limited to the Sabbath and OT Sabbatical provisions (e.g., Matt 25:31-46; Luke 10:25-37 = Zech 7:8-10; Amos 5:21-24)

He established His own authority as one with God and as Lord over the Sabbath.

            Nope, Jesus used His authority to supercede that of any man/leader and restored God’s intent for His Eternal Law and His Sabbath, and fulfill whatever was ceremonial and typologically pointing to Himself. (Cf. Heb 10:1-10; John 8:28; 12:49; 14:10)

The Pharisees were strict Sabbath keepers. They followed the Old Covenant and embellishments to the letter. And yet they missed the whole point of the Sabbath. They found no rest from their endless works/efforts at salvation. They found no real honest repentance that Sabbath laws were mere shadows of hope, a weekly reminder that there was a paradise to be regained and it was through the means of righteousness.

This was not the intent of the Sabbath. It was not a day for ‘remembrance of sin’ or even
‘for repentance of it then’ per se, but rather a special day for “right-doing” (= “righteousness” (Isa 45:19)) action against the rest-disturbing/hampering detriments of sin, especially after the fall sin Man’s work was then necessarily complicated (Gen 3:17-19); and even more after the necessary ravaging judgment of the flood to the anticipated (Gen 7:2-4) point that the killing and eating of [perhaps then also only “clean”] animals was then (bindingly), necessarily allowed by God. (Gen 9:3-5).

There could be a rest from the endless struggle and the horrible burden of trying to earn your salvation.

            The observance of the Sabbath never had, in God’s own Theology, anything to do with earning salvation. It instead served to “sanctify” God’s people (Exod 31:13; Ezek 20:12) by clearing the time and thus affording them the opportunity in: a literal/tangible full day off to, both, Spiritually refresh themselves and also be/do better than, especially in regards to what they genuinely may not have been able to do in none-Sabbath days/periods as they were then working to (physically) sustain themselves. The Sabbath always allowed for God’s people to rest in Him, and, by its worshipping (Ezek 46:1-3) Holy Convocations, dedicatingly learn from Him things which would greatly aid their everyday lives.
            And as Jesus, then James, taught, the “good works” of the Law are part of the salvation’s requirement (Matt 19:19-26; 25:31-46; James 2:14-26). It was the merely object-lesson ‘ceremonial Law and its specific works’ which tangibly could never truly provide for, nor assure, one’s faith-based character/psyche salvation/healing and righteousness/sanctification, and thus warrant Eternal Life for fallen man. (See Gal 3:19-22, 3:23-4:7; (=COL 384.2))

When Jesus came, He brought the rest, the true rest. The child of God is now a new person. Under the New Covenant we are healed and washed and found and accepted. We have entered into rest with none other than the Creator Himself. We have been given righteousness. We rejoice in that gift.

            And, quite counterintuitively enough, Jesus certainly could not have truly provided that rest in any way by ignoring and/or himself “violating”, especially God’s Spiritual or Social Rest, Commandment. (Matt 5:19; James 2:10) Jesus’s Gospel teachings fully reflected this fact. Proper and Full ‘Healing/Saving/Sanctifying Sabbatical Rest’, in both Letter and Spirit, was what Jesus’s ministry was all about for it provided for man to come to be in a position to enjoy God’s long-available Temporal and Spiritual blessings (cf. Matt 11:28-30)...And man now also has to, in willful responses, walk as Jesus walked.. (e.g., John 14:15; Matt 7:21-23; James 1:25; 1 John 2:3-7; 5:3)....

We cease all effort to earn our salvation. Jesus literally did away with the Sabbath.

            ....And Jesus indeed nowhere taught/said that God’s Sabbath was either abolsihed or burdensome.

What about the rest of the New Testament? What does the New Testament say to the church regarding the Sabbath? Let's look at Hebrews 3. There's a lot more to be said about this, I'm just trying to give you the highlights and next Sunday night we're going to look at the Lord's Day, Sunday, and see how that fits in the purpose of God.

But there are a few definitive passages. Hebrews 3 verse 7, probably a good place to start, “The Holy Spirit says, ‘Today if you hear His voice, do not harden your hearts as when they provoked Me as in the day of trial in the wilderness where your fathers tried Me by testing Me and saw My works for 40 years. Therefore I was angry with this generation and said they always go astray in their heart and they do not know My ways and I swore in My wrath they shall not enter into My rest.'” God's true rest didn't come through Joshua. God's true rest didn't come through Moses. God's true rest comes only through Jesus Christ. Joshua led the nation of Israel into the land of their promised rest and that it was nothing more than a temporary earthly rest, merely a shadow of the final ultimate heavenly rest. My rest, this is the promise of salvation that God gives to those who put their trust in Him. Verse 12, “Take care, brethren, that there be not in any of you an evil unbelieving heart that falls away from the living God, but encourage one another day after day as long as it's still called today so that none of you will be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin for we have become partakers of Christ if we hold fast the beginning of our assurance, firm until the end. While it is said today if you hear His voice, do not harden your hearts as when they provoked Me for who provoked Him when they had heard indeed, did not all those who came out of Egypt led by Moses, the whole generation died in the wilderness, and with whom was He angry for 40 years? Was it not with those who sinned, whose bodies fell in the wilderness? And to whom did He swear that they would not enter His rest but to those who were disobedient. So we see that they were not able to enter because of unbelief.”

            John MacArthur’s take on these Heb 3 statements are interestingly, but are actually unexgetical, both contextually and theologically.

-Contextually: Heb 3:10b provides the pivotal key into understanding just what was at fault here. It was because the people had not known the “ways of God”, which actually are His various Sabbatical ways, as spoken of throughout the OT, that they could never enjoy that Sabbatical rest of God, including when they were living in that promise land.

-Theologically: The “rest” here is indeed far more than what was provided by one day per week in the Fourth Commandment. As the OT indeed copiously teaches, it was also a national and socio-economic rest, and not to mention a religious one as well with God wanting to increase the Spiritual knowledge and understandings of His People (cf. Hos 4:6), (-and there indeed is much more to (beneficially) know and learn about God and the Divine), pointedly during their weekly and periodic Sabbath/Sabbatical convocations. (cf. Isa 66:23; Ezek 46:1-3).

The kind of rest that is important for us is the salvation rest that comes by faith...by faith in God.

Salvation/Healing rest by faith is not better demonstrated and expressed in any teaching
of God than in/through the Sabbath. It is people who ignore and violate its Letter and its Spirit to follow after the ways and will of man, both in religious and in socio-economic matters, which are both fundamental to God’s Sabbath, who jointly demonstrate that they do not trust, even believe, in the Creator God, especially that He knows what is best for them.
            Quite telling enough that history actually documents that the Seventh-day Sabbath was actually abandoned by Christians when trying to save themselves during times of Jewish persecutions. Compoundedly today, the socialistic socio-economic aspects in God’s Sabbath are ignored by most Christians so that they can bow to the dogmatic and selfish demands of Capitalistic ways.
            Both of these aspects violating of God’s Sabbath indeed show that man, even (most) Christians still do not trust God, and like those who sought to variously provide for themselves on God’s Sabbath, they do not actually have faith in Jesus to fully obey all that He has said, which, sa seen throughout His ministry, squarely revolved around these Sabbatical issues. (Matt 25:31-46)....

Unbelief forfeits rest.

            ....Not surprising that violators of both of these fundamental aspects of God’s Sabbatical factually do not have rest in either religious things (i.e., full/proper Biblical knowledge and understanding, especially in key prophetic matters) and also socio-economically as seen in the artificiality and precariousness of even the most wealthy of Capitalistic economies. Only following God’s/Christ’s Sabbatical ways will ever procure that joint “Rest”....And that is the Christian message of the book of Hebrews, rightly bindingly applying through the magnifying prism of Christ, what God had sought to accomplish with His Ethnic Israel in the Old Covenant to now God’s New Covenant and Spiritual Israel.

The rest that the New Testament writers are concerned, even the emphasis in the book of Hebrews which is a very Jewish epistle, is not upon a Sabbath observance but upon a spiritual salvation rest. Look at chapter 4, verse 1, “Let us fear if while a promise remains of entering His rest any of you might seem to have come short of it.” The rest that the New Testament concerns itself with is not a day of the week, it is salvation. For indeed we have had good news preached to us just as they also but the word they heard did not profit them cause it was not united by faith in those who heard, for we who have believed have entered that rest.

            Christ’s ‘Gospel “good word”’ did not excise or exclude the Seventh-day Sabbath, nor God’s other Sabbatical provisions, but showed how the proper observance and heeding of these would provide that ultimate Sabbatical rest. You cannot get to that rest by ignoring its requirement. That is what these passage in Heb 3 and 4 are trying to make clear to NT believers. And again, most fundamental to this achievement is indeed “faith” in God/Christ, which then takes Him at His word. (Matt 4:4)
            Indeed, succinctly stated here, Paul’s entire point in Heb 4:1-11ff is that the restorative rest that God wanted to provide this world (cf. Heb 4:3) did not end with: (1) the Sabbath (Heb 4:4); nor (2) the security of a granted territorial kingdom for His Israel (Heb 4:3, 5) but the fullest rest provided by His Messiah (Matt 11:28-30); which, when it would be implemented, would have its fullest implication not by rejecting what priorly was, but by, pointedly Spiritually expanding it to its fullest “righteousness” application. (Isa 42:21; Matt 5:17-20)...And thus, Jesus, nor His “good word” Gospel, did not (1) abolish the Seventh Day Sabbath and its rest, but showed that God had always meant for it to be, especially socio-economically beneficially extended to anyone in need; nor (2) made it that the reach and benefit of God Kingdom would be limited to a territorial space, as in OT times. His Kingdom was not only to influentially benefit the rest of the dark world (Isa 60), but, as history full substantiated, it has been its (truly) Judeo-Christians principles, (which are actually now steadily variously being rejected) which has been of the greatest benefit to the rest of the world, wherever they were observed). So Christ’s Gospel “Rest” was to be a complement of the prior “Rests” which God had been working to give His people starting from OT times (Heb 4:9) not by working outside of those Sabbath Day & National “rests” but by furthering them by anchoring them upon their always intended and included Spiritual implications. And in fact, Paul is also emphasizing that on top of the rest provided by the Sabbath, and God’s Nation/Kingdom, there was now to also be a salvational rest; -one which complements the OT works of the ceremonial law. So contrary to the conflating exegesis of most Christians for Heb 4, the Sabbath Day was not being abolished there, just as the Israel Kingdom of God concept also was not. They rather, and already had been, Spiritually expanded (and not in the dual Babylonian heresies of: ‘Sabbatically physically resting everyday (or any other day)’ or, moreover forcedly so: ‘making all nations, rather than people in all nations, become part of God’s NT Israel’), and so was to be this salvational rest, which evidently many, particularly of the “Hebrew” Christians, were still not full trusting in, still relying on ceremonial (i.e., not good works (Eph 2:8-10; Jam 2:14-26) works to warrant one’s justification|salvation. (Cf. Gal 2:15-21ff; Rom 3:19-31ff).

There is never a command in the New Testament to keep the Sabbath.

            Rather, there was never a need to repeat the Letter of the Sabbath Commandment in the NT. Instead necessary statements on how that commandment should be kept are made. Indeed, of all of the Commandments, the post-Babylonian captivity Jewish people had come to greatly know and emphasize the Sabbath Commandment.

All Ten Commandments are repeated in the New Testament some numerous times except the fourth command...it is never repeated in the New Testament, not one single time.

            That claim is couched in a popular “myth” in Christian circles.

            And merely repeating in passing during discourse one of the commandments is not the same as ‘didactically reemphasizing its continuity’. And, in Rom 7:7 Paul only mentions the 10th Commandment...does that then mean that he only considered that lone commandment to still be valid, or was he rather just giving a telling sample to show exactly what “Law” he was there considering as still wholly binding upon NT believers, and that included the Seventh Day Sabbath.
            The comprehensive fact is that, as expounded here[46:40-54:26] on 1 Tim 1:8-11 in agreement with many NT commentators Paul himself makes a detailed and ordered restatement of all of the Ten Commandments, including referring to the Sabbath in its Isa 58:13 “not treading upon” terms/stipulations. Indeed Paul considered all of this as a most important and foundational part of the “glorious gospel of the blessed God (to the uncircumcised) which he had been entrusted with” (1 Tim 1:11; Gal 2:7; cf. Rev 14:12). Interestingly enough the only commandment that he does not clearly allude to, perhaps if at all, is the last one, the Tenth which is about coveting, but as stated above, he had (chronologically priorly) made most explicit mention of it in his letter to the Christians in Rome.

It was in the midst of the moral law a sign and a symbol to lead the people to rest and repentance.

            The Sabbath, incontrovertibly, indeed ‘included in the moral law’, was rather (1) based on a tangible, and manifestly resting act by God (Exod 31:17), (2) as a reminder of His Existence/Lordship/Creatorship (Rev 14:6/Ezek 20:20/Exod 20:8-11) and (3) was created before there was sin (Gen 2:2-3). And its closest relationship to sin/the fall, was not actually as a reminder of “repentance”, but as the symbol that God was, through the Sabbath, “working” to sanctify His professed people. (Exod 31:13; Ezek 20:12) Indeed, as already stated earlier, the Sabbath is the greatest protection against falling into idolatry (LS 96.1; cf. Ezek 20:24), which includes today’s materialism and egoticism, and the natural debasing behavior that accompanies such a low-self-esteeming belief system. It is not surprising that as Sabbath observance has steadily declined amongst Christians in America, and even in regards to them keeping it on Sundays, so has the morals of society become erode as selfishness increased. People literally exchanged Sabbath/Sabbatarian observance for their ‘own pleasure/“happiness” pursuits’ (Isa 58:13).
            And most relatedly, this pursuing was squarely tied with the overall desire to make more money as (artificially, worshipfully) “provided” through capitalistic structures. And thus were God’s Sabbatical principles simultaneously set aside, fuelled by the evil traits of greed, avarice, selfishness, covetousness, even guile/lying, theft and (tacit/passive/indifferent) murdering. As many Christians, on both sides of the Conservative and Liberal camps, Religiously and Socially believe, a reform of society is indeed squarely linked to both the proper observance of God’s Sabbath, and heeding His Sabbatical socio-economic principles, but they are deceivedly specifically misguidedly in thinking/claiming that this is through Sunday Sacredness and a Capitalistically-controlled economy.

            Addedly, it is most interesting to see, and fully understand from the statements of God in Exod 31:13; Ezek 20:12 that the Seventh Day Sabbath is indeed ‘the indicative “sign” that God is the one who is sanctifying, i.e., making (holy/set apart), His People.’ This conversely means that if/when God’s people will have become holy/set apart, it will pointedly be because of/due to God’s Seventh Day Sabbath. And it is by now demonstrably, even provedly the case that, throughout history, as also seen during Christian Church History, it has always been those who have adhered to the Seventh Day Sabbath, e.g., the Waldenses,  who have managed to either start, or advance, the greatest movements of God, by having a fuller knowledge and understanding of Scripture, Prophecy and God’s Will from simply obeying that Commandment of God, exactly as He has stipulated. Also today, as adhering to God’s Sabbatical principles (i.e., Isa 58) is the present focal issue in God’s NT Israel, this is what is also further making holy/setting apart, and leading to deeper and “fuller” Biblical and Prophetic understandings, -all leading to Perfect/Actual Righteousness (=Dan 12:3, 4, 10).
            As it was done for those, namely SDA’s, who, starting in the 1840's, rediscovered, and began to observe, God’s own Day of Rest, God then acted, through the also jointly key here: (fullest manifestation of the) “Spirit of Prophecy” (=Lam 2:9; Ezek 7:26; Rev 12:17[3]; 19:10), as seen in LS 95-96[4], to Himself give them a further key into properly understanding the Bible, pointedly here, the key to eschatological prophecies, -a revelation that ‘the Sabbath of the Fourth Commandment, (including, as shown by Jesus, and by now made more clear, (see e.g., here), its socio-economic requirements), is the focal issue in/for Final Events’, which had actually been perceptively advanced by several (non-“SDA’s”) Bible/Prophecy Expositors/Interpreters. It is therefore no coincidence that it is such Sabbath observers who have been quite observably specially blessed by God, as seen in various accomplishments, including pioneering health reforming, which are, member for member, unmatched by any other Christian Denomination.

            To me, the most convincing things about the Truth/validity of Sabbath of the Fourth Commandment is that, as is also the case with any other thing of God which (inherently) requires faith, is that, like a key in a lock, when it is “plugged in”, i.e., into the Bible and its Prophecies, it, as many Sabbath converts have themselves discovered, literally “unlocks” an objectively proper and Biblical/Theological sound, understanding into all of Bible Prophecies, and even, as seen throughout this blog, to deeper levels when it is most “fully” (i.e., also socio-economically) understood and heeded. Tellingly enough people who do not at all, or fully (i.e., SDA’s), make use of this ‘Full Sabbath key”, most easily demonstrably have, (as done e.g. for this series on Revelation, despite “best” efforts; or also, -and when not conversely “Preteristic” in interpretations, spuriously at “best”: “generic/philosophical” (e.g. here)), have a very superficial and shallow, unrighteous, even unSpiritual and/or Theologically heretical, “knock-knock/Dr. Seuss” (i.e. contra Rev 1:1's “signified” =Biblically&Spiritually, (thus “doubly”), encrypted; -with the “encryption key” being a Sabbatical one; one which dually implicates God’s Loving Character & also Loving Creative Basis/Authority, both which are indeed  represented by His Sabbath/Sabbatical (Law(s)/Mandate)), understanding of currently applicable/Apocalyptic Bible prophecies, indeed not to detailedly mention: having a perverted understanding of the Gospel (i.e., in regards to also Ethnic Jews today). The fact that these, especially/also Protestant Christians have literally, as delineated and detailed in this historical presentation, been duped into endorsing false gospel-based understandings and (thus also) prophetic interpretations, including in regards to Christ’s Second Coming (~Matt 24:24, 27), namely through Futurist-Dispensationalism, not to mention their complete abandoning of the solid Reformation understanding as to what was Revelation’s Babylon as well as the Antichrist/“Man of Sin”.
            So such evidences of misguidedness, which are all, even more fully, restored when this “Sabbath Key” is used, is substantiate demonstration of the evil nature which is impelling the long, prophetically warned of movement/development that would think and endeavor to change God’s Commandment and Sabbath (=Dan 7:25). And that is to me also the validating evidence/confidence that the observance of that ‘seemingly unnecessary’ Seventh Day Sabbath is indeed God’s focal/final testing point, -indeed even God’s end time obedience and faith testing ‘tree’/stipulation.
            And while many people today are, effectively, even in some cases, acceptedly, doing God’s will in pointedly doing all that they know to do to help people in various need, it will actually be those who truly and deliberately heed God’s Sabbatical requirement who will actually do all that is possible to exhaustively accomplish this task, and thus will naturally also have been “set apart” by God’s Sabbath as being “(most) holy”. This “sanctifying basis” will also keep these people from falling into a quite subtle idolatrous humanistic trap where the various fallen will of man, which in some cases create further needs (e.g. the “human need” to be sexually promiscuous, and so indiscriminately dispensing contraceptives is seen as a humanitarian need), is been used as effectively the determining god. And on the flip side, as is the common case today, it is only by fully heeding God’s Sabbatical Law/principles, that one does not fall for, as many (especially Western) Christians are, even indifferently, doing today, by letting the supposed “freedom”of man be the determining God here, as seen in the case of abortion, where fully applying God’s Sabbatical principles, as seen in these plans, would actually exhaustively overturn the problem, rather than the current status quo of letting the spurious and idolatrous Capitalistic money/economic system determine which of these conceived infants lives or dies.
            So given all of these deep and far reaching/impacting implications in God’s Sabbath, it is no wonder that Satan has been endeavoring to variously undermine it, whether religiously or socio-economically. And, as object-lessonly demonstrated in the Bible, fully heeding it will surely involve some sort of total, even life-pending, dependence on, and trust in, God (e.g. Exod 23:10-13; Lev 25:1-7, 8-12, 13-17), to the point where He will necessarily have to supernaturally intervene (e.g. Exod 16:4-5, 22-30; Lev 25:18-22), that God is reserving such added/fuller supernatural blessings and giftings for those who will truly and fully, inherently in faith, and not any (Salvational) works, obey Him on this “testing” point!!

But when you come to the New Testament, there's never a repeat of that command.

            There candidly would not need to be a verbatim repeating of the Sabbath commandment for it was, letter of the law wise, well observed by all Jews then as they were phobicly aware that it was their ancestors disregard for pointedly the Sabbath, and other Sabbatical Laws, which caused them to be territorially dispossessed and nationally subjugated (e.g., 2 Chr 36:20-21; Ezek 20:20-24; Neh 13:17-18), with them still seeing the results of these Divine judgements then. And there actually is, as discussed later, contrary to popular and mythical beliefs, also strong inferential evidence in the NT that the Sabbath was still only kept on Saturday by NT Gentiles Christians (e.g., Acts 13:43-44; 15:21 (expounded here); Acts 18:4), right through the Apostolic Age and past the 70 A.D. destruction of Jerusalem. (cf. Heb 4:9))...But of all of the Ten Commandments, the Sabbath is the one which comes up the most in the NT, and thus Jesus had plenty of occasions to clearly state that either its actual secular/self-profiting work restrictions was no longer binding, or that it was changed to Sunday, or even hint that this would become the case. For such (New) Covenantal purposes, that all would have to be done, by and before, Christ’s New Covenant ratifying ceremony and passion act (=Heb 9:16-21), which started in the Upper Room (Matt 26:26-28 = Exod 24:6-8), where He then did ratify the long-known/stated (e.g, John 1:29; 2:18-22; 7:37-39) understanding that He was, in His sacrificed body and shed blood, going to replace the atoning and cleansing ceremonial and typological aspects in the Mosaic Law (Matt 26:26-28).
            So since Jesus never made any change to the letter/day (Exod 20:8-11) nor Spirit (Isa 58) of the Fourth Commandment, Seventh Day Sabbath Law, but instead, as He did with all of the other Commandments only worked to restore it back from its, especially Spiritually, perverting, then that commandment is also intactly enforce in His New Covenant. (Heb 8:7-13)

The rest that the New Testament is concerned about is the rest that comes to the soul from hearing and believing the good news preached. That's the rest the New Testament offers. Verse 9 says, “There is a Sabbath rest for the people of God for the one who has entered His rest has himself rested also from his works as God did from His.” That's so remarkable.

As documentedly presented in here, the key word “sabbatismos” in Heb 4:9 is
understood to literally mean “Sabbath-keeping”, but what is actually being done in Heb 3-4 is a non-abrogating expansion of what was to be included in God’s sabbatical rest. The author, likely Paul, is trying to show NT Believers that God has much more in mind for Sabbatical rest for His people than merely a day. He has always had National Israel rest and peace plans for His People which now include Spiritual Converts forming a, as actually also possible in the OT (Isa 56:6-7) not-merely Ethnic Israel entity. (e.g, Gal 3:28-29). But, as in the OT when this rest was possible, it is the foundational observance of God’s requirements, as stated in the Ten Commandments which can ever warrant God giving His People that “Greater/Ultimate Rest”.
            And it is only then that God’s Israel would find rest from their work to attain to that Messianic rest. And quite tangibly, God was actually planning to Edenicly restore their land (Isa 51:3; Ezek 36:35) in the midst of other still sin-ravaged nations (=Isa 66:22-24|Rev 21:24-27) which would indeed physically reverse the “greater work curse” that was Divinely brought about because of sin. (Gen 3:17-18).

What does that mean? There's only two possible concepts about getting to heaven. You work your way in or it's a gift, right? To the Jews, they were working. But when you enter the rest of grace and the rest of faith, works cease. The day you came to Jesus Christ, you ceased trying to earn your salvation, right? You entered into permanent rest.

            Since “Faith without works” is dead (James 2:17), then only ceremonial works are being addressed here. And also since ‘faith does not nullify God’s Moral Law’ (Rom 3:31), then this faith does not abolish the Ten Commandments, including its Fourth. It is most ironic to claim otherwise since the Sabbath is actually the most prominent commandment which Spiritually and Socio-Economically contributes to this “Ultimate Messianic Rest.” Trying to obtain and enjoy that rest by doing away with God’s Fourth Commandment is Theologically and substantively completely contradictory (cf. Matt 7:21-23). All of MacArthur’s attempts to try to “morally” separate the Fourth Commandment from the Decalogue have been exegetically and Theologically proven to be quite hollow.

This is just a magnificent New Testament emphasis. The Mosaic Sabbath, the symbol, the sign was a dim reflection of the true rest.

First of all, it actually is the Divine Sabbath (Gen 2:2-3) which God also “benefically”
(Mar 2:27) “gave” (Exod 16:29) to His National People Israel, and that both Ethnic and Spiritual (cf. Isa 56:6-7), but as stated here, the Sabbath was indeed a dim reflection of the Greater Ultimate, pervasive rest that God wanted to give His People...a Rest that would be as perfect as was the very First Sabbath Day in the Perfect World of Eden!! But this dim reflecting does not at all mean that its stipulating light should ever be put. That would be like claiming to try to achieve proper traffic management by removing all traffic signal lights. Even if, as likely possible in a future where there will be self-driving cars, technology was developed to embed traffic signaling in cars responding merely to non-visible signals at intersections, the principle of coming to a complete and sustained stop at intersections will still be present. So it “enduringly” is with the literal physical 24-hour rest and also corporate worship that is commanded in the Sabbath Law. Indeed God Himself fully plans for these aspects to be enforced even when He will have made a “New Heavens and a new Earth”. (Isa 65:17ff, 66:22-23 = Rev 21:1-2ff)

Look at Romans for a moment, chapter 14. Since this is true that the rest the New Testament calls for is a spiritual rest, salvation rest from the works approach to righteousness, you can no longer make anything out of the Sabbath. Listen to Romans 14:5, “One person regards one day above another. Another regards every day alike. Each person is fully convinced in his own mind. He who observes the day observes it for the Lord.” There were Jews who had come to faith in Christ and had a hard time letting go of the Sabbath. It was pretty much ingrained in them. They thought they were still obeying the Lord by maintaining Old Covenant Sabbath law. They observed it for the Lord. He who observes the day observes it for the Lord. He who eats following the dietary laws does it for the Lord. He who gives thanks to God, he who eats not for the Lord he doesn't eat and gives thanks to God. In other words, as verse 5 says, each person is fully convinced in his own mind does what he thinks is right. It really doesn't matter.

            The level of unexegetical claims and conclusions individually and collectively made here by John MacArthur are quite astonishing coming from him.
            First of all, in regards to “eating” Rom 14:2 clearly shows that the distinction was only between ‘meat or no meat at all (i.e., meat also vs. only vegetables)’. And that squarely was in regards to eating meats from markets that had been sacrificed to idols (1 Cor 10:23-11:1), with Paul here actually expounding upon a/his prior decision by/with the Jerusalem Council (Acts 15:29; 21:25) by adding a “weak in the faith believer” (as all Gentile converts back then probably all were), vs. a non-weak one qualifier now. As Paul now says, the one who eats such meats is acceptable to God because he actually is (“trumpingly”) giving thanks to God. (Rom 14:6; cf. 1 Tim 4:3-5). So the dietary Laws making distinction between clean and unclean meats are not at all at issue here, or in the NT, contrary to popular Christian assuming beliefs.
            Now in regards to the “day” mentioned here, the “Seventh Day Sabbath” is not at all said, or actually meant here. Based on the proper understanding of Col 2:16-17, (later addressed), it can only sequiturly be understood here that it is the other ceremonial/Feast Sabbaths which are at issue. Certainly no one would, as many Christians most vacuously claim today, think to keep every single day of the week as a Sabbath. Indeed that can only be the conclusion if one is to believe that Paul was saying that some people rightly keep every day as their Sabbath instead of just one day. A person who would do this would actually not be able to ever work at all. And even, as it is the case with pastors/preachers, they get most of their income from the (tithing) donation of others, or even in the case of business people living off of the profits of their commercial ventures, then the Sabbath also could not be claimed to be kept here as it would hypocritically have other people working for you on ‘all of those’ day ‘uninterruptedly kept as Sabbath. (contra. Exod 20:10 & Deut 5:14-15)
            So clearly/logically “every/all day(s)” just cannot be a reference to the ‘7 days of the week’. It instead is a reference to all of the Feast days that existed in Israel’s economy, and which did indeed are Biblically warranted to have a (non-binding) Messianic/Millennial extension (Ezek 45:17-25; cf. in Acts 18:21 (NKJV)). (-See such New Covenant contextualizing/explaining work of Samuele Bacchiocchi here and here). So perhaps some (Jewish) Christians were claiming that e.g., ‘of all the feasts, Passover and Pentecost are the one which should be kept above all others’, but others were (more sanctimoniously” claiming that ‘they kept all of the feasts days alike.’
            And it is quite significant, that unlike with eating (Rom 14:6b), Paul never states in regards to ‘day observances’ that ‘one person would not be keeping any day’. So a claim that the Christian today does not have to keep any day as the weekly Sabbath cannot be based on these statements, indeed especially as the weekly Sabbath cannot be understood to have been the issue here.

Verse 8 says, “If we live, we live for the Lord. If we die, we die for the Lord. Therefore whether we live or die, we are the Lord's.” Don't make an issue out of the Sabbath.

Rom 14:8 exegetically does not at all mean that subjective conclusion of MacArthur.
Paul’s intelocutory concluding point here about Rom 14:1-6 is actually wholly in three verses: Rom 14:7-9. In there he instead said and meant that whatever one freely chooses to do in regards to those optional ceremonial days and outwardly confusing ‘dedicated meats’ eating rights, they do not do it towards men, but towards God for their who existence and even death is to be in relation to the glory of God. Then Paul adds that this God that they should be solely concerned with glorifying and answering to is Jesus Christ who by His Life and Death merited/inherited that Divine Prerogative. (=Phil 2:1-11; Heb 1:2-4ff)
            So Paul’s counsel here instead is to not make the observance of these optional, even completely vacuous ceremonial things a “test of faith/faithfulness”. But dietary (=health) laws, nor the Moral Seventh Day Sabbath of the Fourth Commandment are ever at issue here....irrespective of a long glib tradition of Christian misinterpretation and misunderstanding, as likewise claimed by John MacArthur here, on especially this passage.

As he says back in verse 2, “Some people are concerned about dietary laws. Some people are concerned about Sabbath observance. Those things are part of a passing scheme.”

As also discussed above, Rom 14:2 actually does not say, nor mean, that at all.

And there's instruction in the New Testament elsewhere to let these people develop their understanding of their freedom from these prescriptions.. Don't force them against their conscience. Jewish believers still felt compelled to observe Sabbath law, dietary law. Let them do that until they come to the fullness of their freedom.

            Actually, all things proper and fully considered and studied out,  the NT does not speak anywhere against either healthy eating or against the weekly Sabbath worship and resting on the Seventh Day, Saturday.
            As e.g., also seen from Christ in Matt 15:2, 10, 11, it was the ceremonial aspects of the Law, especially what was futile tacked on by the Pharisees, which was not lasting, or even ever important at all.

What is remarkable about this is there's no command here to do that. This would be a perfect place to say, “And those of you who aren't doing it, shape up.” It doesn't happen. In Galatians chapter 4 and verse 9, “But now that you have come to know God, or rather to be known by God, how is it that you turn back again to the weak and worthless elemental things to which you desire to be enslaved all over again? You observe days and months and seasons and years. I fear for you, perhaps I have labored over you for nothing. You have no obligation to go back to the calendar prescriptions of the festivals and the Sabbaths of the Mosaic economy.”

Only the Feasts Sabbaths were part of the Mosaic Economy. The Sabbath of the Fourth
Commandment was part of the Eternal/Unchanging Moral Law, and Jesus came to reform it to show how it actually should always have been observed, i.e., not merely to do no work and rest, but also to do good/healing works.

Turn to Colossians chapter 2. This is perhaps the most definitive because it pulls two signs together, the sign of the Abrahamic Covenant, circumcision, and the sign of the Mosaic Covenant, Sabbath. And in Colossians chapter 2, of course we know that circumcision has been completely abolished in the New Covenant...totally abolished. Galatians 5:2 says, “If you receive circumcision, Christ is of no benefit to you.” If you receive circumcision, Christ is no benefit to you, it doesn't matter. “In Christ neither circumcision or uncircumcision means anything, it's faith working through love.” And so here in Colossians chapter 2 verse 11, “In Christ you were circumcised with the circumcision made without hands. In the removal of the body of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ you had a far more dramatic surgery and it was internal. You were buried with Him in baptism and you were raised with Him through faith in the working of God who raised Him from the dead. You who were dead in your transgressions and the uncircumcision of your flesh, you made alive together with Him having forgiven us all our transgressions. Set aside circumcision. If you hang on to circumcision, you make Christ of no effect. The sign of the Abrahamic Covenant is gone, that Covenant passes away because that Covenant cannot save.  

(Circumcision pointedly addressed (Abraham’s) works of the flesh and not faith.)

And then in verse 16, “Therefore no one is to act as your judge in regard to food or drink or in respect to a festival or a new moon or a Sabbath day. Things which are a mere shadow of what is to come, but the substance belongs to Christ. Don't let anybody hold you to a Sabbath. And that's referring to the weekly Sabbath because the other festival Sabbaths are covered under the term festival and new moon. Don't let anybody hold you to the Sabbath. It was part of the system that included the temple, the priesthood, sacrifices. It's gone. It was only the shadow, not the substance. It only pointed to the fact that God was the Creator, that paradise had been lost, that you had come under the terrifying judgment of the Law and needed to repent and come to God and seek righteousness and mercy and grace at His hand.

            Succinctly, summarily said, the common exegetical argument that since “sabbath” in Col 2:16 is in the plural in the Greek, [and “new moon” constrastingly is singular], and therefore should be translated as “sabbaths and is thus a reference to the ceremonial/festal sabbaths (which actually were of different festal kinds unlike the “new moon”) in the Mosaic Covenant does not incontrovertibly prove the point here since the Seventh Day Sabbath itself is repeatedly also mentioned in the plural in the Greek of both the NT and LXX (the Bible which NT writers mostly used/quoted), (e.g., from NT: Luke 4:16; Acts 13:14; 16:13; LXX examples are below). However the exegetical argument which does check out is that when the Seventh Day Sabbath is being pointedly spoken of, a (plural) definite article accompanies that plural “sabbaths” in the Greek. This consistently occurs in the Greek of both the NT and LXX (e.g., Exod 20:8; 35:3; Deut 5:12, 15; Lev 23:15; 24:8; Num 28:10*; Isa 58:13; versus Lev 16:31; 23:32).
            That weekly vs. ceremonial Sabbath distinction through the article is made quite clear from the statement in Lev 23:37-38. The only actual exception that I have seen of this articular specifying is in Matthew’s statement in Matt 28:1, which is actually similar statements as in Mar 16:2 & Luke 24:1. But since Matthew’s Greek also differentiatingly does not use an article to say: “the first of the week” (literally ‘the first from the sabbaths’), as both Mark and Luke rendering do, then it can be seen that Matthew either made a mistake, or he was viewing things here “Hebraically”, for his Jewish audience, and conflatingly generally considering the Seventh Day Sabbath. However other Greek writers did not do the same thing. So it can be exegetically defended that Paul writing to Gentiles in Colossians also did not make such a conflation, and by not including a definite article here, he did not mean the Seventh Day Sabbath, but rather ceremonial/festal sabbaths instead.            

* Num 28:18 = (lit. from LXX): “Sabbatical Burnt offering of the (seventh day) Sabbath (Day itself)”

The LXX Greek of Neh 10:33 may seem to contradict that ‘articular specification’ point
as, unlike in Col 2:16, it uses an article for also the “new moons” (also in the plural) mentioned therein just before “the Sabbath”, (whereas a similar statement in the Greek of 1 Esdras 5:51 mentioning ‘offerings and sacrifices for new moons and sabbaths (and all consecrated feasts) does not use articles, just as in Col 2:16). But that is exegetically because in Neh 10:33 the intent seems to be a distributive reason, i.e., which ‘extends the reach’ of phrase: “for the continual burnt offering” onto “the sabbaths” and also “the new moons” as (or despite) both of those terms are distinguishedly not also prefixed with the Hebrew lamed preposition (=“for”) (cf. 2 Chr 31:3). Thus it was succinctly, “distributively” referring to: ‘the continual burnt offering (for) the sabbaths’ (=Num 28:10; Ezek 46:4) and ‘the continual burnt offering (for) the new moons’ (=Num 28:11; Ezek 46:6, 12) (=2 Chr 2:4; Ezek 45:17; 46:3). [There is however much more to be exegetically/culturally looked into about the various elements of/for this point before it can be definitely argued.]
            The ambiguously confusing things about the long practising Hebrew mindset here in regards to “sabbaths” is that they manifestly, indeed ambiguosly, spoke of both the feast days which were to be kept as a weekly Sabbath, and the weekly Sabbath, in synonymous terms. It would be like referring to a day in the year when you didn’t have to go to school or work as “the holiday”. That would not specify which one exactly as there are many such days in a calender year. But if one actually says “holidays” it can be reasonably assumed that they meant ‘the Christmas/New Years period of off days’. So when these Hebrew writers mention “sabbaths”, while it can include the weekly Sabbath, but it can easily also include and/or merely be speaking to, those other days which were to be kept like that Weekly Sabbath.

Another common argument about Col 2:16 is that the appointed times units there are
being mentioned in ‘descending occurrence”, i.e., annual feasts/appointed times (7), monthly new moons (11-13); weekly Sabbaths [52]. Thus it is argued that the “sabbaths” must be those of the weekly seventh day. However that argument would be just as applicable to the several ceremonial days of the year which Israel had to observe as a Sabbath besides the weekly Seventh day (e.g. Exod 34:18, 21; Num 28:18). In fact it is, in (theological) context much more likely referring to those ‘sabbaths during feast weeks’ rather than the much more “substantive” Fourth Commandment Sabbath.

            Again, and this is pivotally key to understand on this issue, indeed with only Col 2:16 in the whole Bible being the only plausible text where an abrogation of the Sabbath can be claimed, there were indeed two distinct sets of Sabbath in the Jewish Economy, Feast Sabbaths and the Weekly Sabbaths and with God having incorporated the (moreover firstly occurring) Seventh Day Sabbath in the Ten Commandments, it will take much more than an assumed understanding of a lone verse to (uniquely) change or transfer that Commandment. Indeed it would take an express and explicit word/writing from God/Jesus Himself. As the Andrews Study Bible argues in detail: with Colossians chap. 1&2 variously extolling on the Superior/Creator authority/elevatedness of Jesus Christ over any thing, especially any Spiritual being (Col 1:15-20), it is therefore unlikely that it is in that context, effectively “shooting itself in the foot”, by revoking the lone God-given emblem of that Creator God authority as found in the Seventh Day Sabbath (Gen 2:2-3; Exod 20:8-11; cf. Rev 10:6; 14:7).
            And also, with what is fully understood about the Seventh Day Sabbath (i.e., the good works and rest for all of Isa 58), indeed as from all other Sabbatical entities which God has established (e.g., Deut 15), when God takes that Genesis rest/ceasing/finishing blessing (Gen 2:2-3) and bestows/associates it on/with something (e.g., the manna (Exod 16)); it is all for a heightened Spiritual calibration of that entity, indicating that it is also supposed to culminate in playing a part in providing God’s Sabbatical rest; -all leading towards God’s ultimate, (Temporal) Zion Kingdom Rest (=Heb 4:1-13). Indeed with the manna being symbolic of God’s coming “(Creating) Word”, Jesus Christ (John 1:1-3), and His all-providing sacrifice/teachings (=John 6:45-51, 52-59), Jesus did demonstrate this “Sabbatical rest” incorporated in that emblem (=Matt 11:28-30). So the Seventh Day Sabbath of Creation is indeed the (enduring) benchmark of all of what God has come to make “sabbatically” significant.
            Then also, on a comparatively much level theologically involved level, it may be that, in regards to these ceremonial observances, including sabbaths (which Paul himself occasionally, strategically, kept (Acts 18:21 NKJV; 1 Cor 9:20), -and whether or not some would claim that it also includes the weekly Sabbath, Paul may have actually just be addressing that Christians should not be judged about “how” they kept such things, particularly as the meaning of these things were fulfilled in Christ (=Rom 14:5-7). However with the Seventh Day Sabbath, we do have a pointedly furthered “substance” from Him which is from His emphasis throughout His ministry on the “doing good for those in need” aspect of the Sabbath (=Isa 58). So in a sense, and though Jesus was not then actually creating something new, but, tellingly enough, just uplifting what God had always intended for Him Sabbath Commandment, Jesus was remonstrating that the ‘no works rest’ of God’s Sabbath was actually not valid to God if others could not likewise also enter into that complete rest. And so, as God mercifully does, even on the Sabbath, those who could, should then come to the help of those who can’t.

But it didn't provide that. That is provided in Jesus Christ. Paul is saying you no longer need the shadow, you have the substance, you have the rest, the true rest.

More can be said about this, just some final thoughts and we'll let you go.

[Prior points already made above by me in response are correspondingly summarily
restated here:]

There's not one New Testament command to keep the Sabbath.

There was no substantive need to as the Sabbath was the most strictly/best kept of all of
the commandments

All the Ten Commandments are repeated in the New Testament except the one about the Sabbath, it is never quoted in the New Testament.

Other commandments are likewise “never quoted”. But the Sabbath commandment is
the one which comes up the most as it was the one which Jesus tangibly acted to reform the most.

There are no prescriptions or Sabbath rules anywhere in the New Covenant.

There instead is the furthering demonstration by Jesus through his ministry, (and not just
statements during the sermon on the mount as with some other of the Ten Commandments) as to how and why it should be kept..i.e., to do good.

There is no instruction about behavior on the Sabbath anywhere in the New Testament.

As just stated above, yes there clearly is...

In Acts 15 when the Jerusalem Council decided what would be required of Gentile believers in the church, they did not require them to observe the Sabbath.

That is because they, (unlike what most Christians today glibly circularly assume here),
they knew that the Seventh Day Sabbath was not ‘part of the Mosaic/Ceremonial Law’, but part of the unalternable and non-temporary Moral Law. It is, unbiasedly, logcially/sequiturly as simple as that!!
            Moreover with, as referenced to in post, there being concrete testimony/documentation that the Jerusalem (=Apostolic) Church itself continued to observe the Sabbath even after they fled from Jerusalem to Pella in ca. 70 A.D., then it is unlikely that they themselves had here a theological understanding that had abrogated God’s Seventh Day Sabbath.

The Apostles never commanded anybody to observe the Sabbath.

That is because it was already being faithfully kept on Saturday by all (E.g., Acts 13:14, 42, 44; 15:21 collectively shows that Paul and other Church leaders only held religious meetings on the Sabbath, and not on the next day Sunday). No need to exhort people to do something which they are already faithfully, all, doing. In fact just like instruction is given in letters, which were passed on beyond the primary recipient, in regards to observing communion (1 Cor 11:17-26); one would think that there would likewise be a similar instructing in regards to what would be a most pivotal switching of the Sabbath from Saturday to Sunday, indeed also explaining why. But there is no such thing in the New Testament.
            And also, the inescapable fact that for centuries Christians were confused with Jews because they likewise worshipped on Saturdays, (see the quotes in here from 3rd-5th century Church History writers) is concrete evidence that they had not priorly switched their Sabbath to Sunday. If that had been the case, then we would also be seeing remonstrating letters from Paul and the other Apostles reminding those Christian that they should instead be worshipping on Sunday and (supposedly) why this was now to be the case. Rather, and as ample historical evidence shows, the Sunday tradition in (Gentile) Christian circles was birthed in Rome out of pure convenience in order to escape the Jewish persecutions started there. All of that is according to Bible Prophecy in regards to Rome and this attempted change in God’s Times and Laws (Dan 7:25)

They never chastise anybody for not observing the Sabbath.

That rather speaks to me, all things considered, that the observance of the Seventh Day
itself was never an issue, as it actually would have been the prominent case since there is historical evidence that the “Jerusalem Church” always kept Seventh Day Sabbath. So if there was a ‘Sabbath vs. Sunday’ difference between Jews and Gentile Christian here, it would have come up on the agenda for that Acts 15 Jerusalem Council.

They never warned believers about Sabbath violations.

Other than the spurious violations invented by Pharisees, there was no restriction on the
Sabbath except for resting from physical work, which is quite easy to understand and observe, including from just reading the examples in the OT.

They never encouraged believers to hold to the Sabbath.

This lineup of “arguments from silence” do not prove anything. If people are not being
encouraged to do something, here a Moral Law, it is more likely that it is because they are already fully living in accordance to that rule rather than the opposite. In fact, given that the Sabbath is part of the Ten Commandment, it rather is strange that there is no explicit and clear instruction in the NT not to keep it...The best that can be claimed are statements which actually refer to the ceremonial/festal sabbaths.

It is gone...with one exception. We can go back to that original Genesis 2 chapter and we can be reminded that every seventh day that goes by is an opportunity for us to acknowledge the greatness of our Creator. We can bless that day by in it acknowledging God as Creator.

You cannot have it both ways....Saturday (moreover, in part) and Sunday....God only
instituted the Seventh Day Sabbath and clearly stated what should and should not be done on that day. And Jesus later, through reformations, made that day as honorable as it was always meant to be before being made into a hypocritical burden by Pharisaic Laws.
            In fact Church History reveals that Early, post Apostolic Christians tried to ‘have it both ways’ and eventually “conveniently” completely abandoned the Saturday Sabbath, all leading to the present state of Ten Commandments slighting state as it exists today.

And then, as I said, and this is for next week, first day is where we acknowledge God as Redeemer.

That is a “tradition of man” which literally contradicts the word of God. (Matt 15:3-6)
Indeed Paul taught that the redemptive work of God through Christ is commemorated by Communion (1 Cor 11:26) and Baptism (Rom 6:3-7). The Resurrection is also theologically celebrated/commemorated by the new life in Christ demonstrated by Believers (Rom 6:5) and not by a day, which Jesus Himself never instituted nor even spoke, or hinted, of, which, again would all have been done before the establishment celebration of the New Covenant.
            So while (post-Apostolic) men, through various, but all spurious “house of card” claims, may have sough to make Sunday holy and sanctified as a New Covenant Holy Day, this was not sanctioned by God.

We don't ever really celebrate a Sabbath in the Mosaic sense because it's a ministry of death.

            All Ten Commandments were to be administered/enforced through a “Ministry of Death/Condemnation” (=2 Cor 3:6-11ff; Gal 3:10), and that was inherently/correspondingly because, with the Ten Commandments having been written by the finger of God on stone tablets which were (relatively) readily accessible/viewable by Israel, then they had no excuse to claim that they did not know God’s Will. Hence that ‘letter (of the Law) does duly kill’. (2 Cor 3:6a) However under the New Covenant, these same Laws were Spiritually made known, and thus the corresponding merciful administration of it through Christ’s provide Grace which suspend these due penalties of imposed death for the violation of certain of even those Ten Commandments (cf. John 8:1-11). =The ministry of Righteousness (2 Cor 3:9b) with the ‘Spirit giving/granting life’. (2 Cor 3:6b). So the New Covenant, involves the same Ten Commandments but also with commuting grace being applicable for their violations. The Sabbath Commandment itself is thus also no longer to be enforced through a ministry of death. -(Which pertinently is how/why God can accept as righteous those who have sincerely ignored and/or broken His Fourth Commandment). But additionally, believers are now “free/at liberty” to, as Jesus demonstrated with His “(good) works” on the Sabbath, righteously/Spiritually do whatever fully upholds (and not contradict) this Law, no longer being limited to only/merely meet what has been written out as Law -(which unscrupulously and basely produced all kinds of selfish/unrighteous (Pharisaical) “loopholes” e.g., Luke 13:14-17; 14:1-6; =Matt 5:20; cf. John 3:3, 5-8)

But we can celebrate a Sabbath in the Genesis sense as we celebrate God as our Creator

That is the only Commandment given in the Bible....nothing else....

 and then on the first day of the week, as we celebrate Him as our Redeemer.

That may seem like a good thing to do, but it was never (morally) commanded by God.

Now next Sunday night with just that overview, I want to transition to how we view Sunday. Is there something important about it? Is there something unique about it, special about it? And what does Scripture say;? And I think you'll enjoy what the Lord wants us to know and how to respond to that as we consider that next time.

(Duly addressed next)

Father, we thank You for a wonderful day. We thank You for the consistency of Your truth. We thank You for the Word which opens up our understanding to all things. We're so unendingly thrilled at the glorious truth of Scripture that comes clear and unmistakable to us. We thank You that we're beyond the shadows and the signs and the symbols. We live in the reality of rest. We have rested forever from works righteousness, efforts at self-salvation. We have entered into the rest of the gospel. We have a taste of paradise even now in this rest and one day will enter into that glory of heavenly paradise. But You've given us a taste of it now. Every day for us is a Sabbath because every day we rest in the finished work of Jesus Christ, we give Him all the praise. Amen.

            I guess as for the claims made in that prayer Rom 14:23b (cf. Matt 9:29), however there clearly is Rom 3:31; Heb 10:26-27!!

___________________________

MacArthur’s Second Part Sermon: “Why Sunday Is the Lord's Day” (video):

It's good to be back to open the Word of God.

When I'm not here I miss being in the church profoundly. And I try my best to find some experience that will substitute for Grace Church. When I was confined at home and I couldn't really go anywhere, which is pretty much been the way it has worked out since surgery, I was sort of left to either have a member of my family set up a computer so that I could get the audio from Grace which I absolutely loved and didn't happen often enough for me. But on those other occasions, I found myself trying to find something on television that would fill in. And that was a very difficult challenge.
I want you to know that the Scripture in my mind is profound. It is just profound. It is unsearchably rich. It is deep. As to excel all ideas, all philosophies, all opinions, all insights by all human beings put together. And yet I found it almost impossible to find anybody who would just mind the depths of Scripture.

Opinions, plenty of them. Insights, plenty of them. But it was almost impossible to find someone who understood the beauty and loftiness of Scripture. Superficial preaching betrays a weak view of Scripture, a superficial understanding of its great, great treasures. So it's good to be here and it's good to be with those I love and by whom I'm loved here at Grace Church.

Now having said that about the profound things of Scripture, and there are many...one other footnote I need to say to add to that. I just read a book yesterday written by Leland Ryken, I would commend it to you. It's a book on English translation work. It discusses philosophy of translation...philosophy of translation. For example, why the King James, New King James, NAS, and ESV are word for word formal equivalency translations as opposed to all the other translations which are called dynamic equivalencies. And that's a book worth reading if it's in the bookstore. The author sent me a copy to read but it's worth reading to understand that there are people even in the translation of the Bible who have a low view of the Bible. They feel that the prevailing...the prevailing power that reigns over the Scripture is the contemporary reader rather than the author. So the idea of the translation is not to give us what the author intended, but to give us what the reader would want. So you have translations like The Message, The Living Bible, The New Living Translation, The NIV, the TNIV, the Message, Good News for Modern Man, etc., etc., etc. All of them make the reader sovereign and they want to put the Bible into the modern context and the modern language no matter what the author intended.

They're the popular translations, I would venture to say. They dominate the evangelical world out there and they betray the same lack of understanding that when you go to the Bible you want to make sure you're reading what the author intended, what the Holy Spirit inspired, not reading something that is some contemporary committee spin on what they think readers would want to read. So it's a very, very important issue, it comes all the way down to that. And we're just very thankful, I'm very thankful for influences in my life through the years and influences in the ministries we've had together here at Grace Church that have led us to the conviction that we want to know what God meant by what He said and we want to know what He said originally, the way He said it. We want Him to be sovereign over His Word, not the modern reader.

So we use a translation that is a literal translation. I preach out of the NAS, the New King James would be a literal translation. The ESV, English Standard Version, the New...perhaps more poetic, more beautifully structured translation is also formal equivalence they call it, word for word for word translation, rather than some form of a paraphrase. That's why we use the ones that we use and that's why I use the NAS and the New King James which is another excellent formal equivalency text.
So we turn to the Word of God and we can find all the things we need to know there. And we don't need a Bible that's in the contemporary mood. We don't need a Bible that's been updated for us. We can go back to the original and get everything that we need. And one of the things we need to understand is the importance of worship and we, in looking at the importance of worship, want to understand how Sunday fits into that, how the Lord's Day fits into that. And I gave a message on the Sabbath because there are people who are confused about the Sabbath and tonight I want to talk to you a little bit about the Lord's Day. It's not going to be along message, or a long service, for that matter, but I do want to let you know what the Scripture has to say because I think it's so important.

Now this is Sunday, right? And you're here. And we're always here on Sunday and there's a reason for that. It didn't happen by accident. It's a pattern, it's not only a pattern here at Grace Community Church, it's pretty much a pattern in churches everywhere in the United States. It's been the time-honored traditional pattern and it goes back and back and back and back and back and all the way back to the New Testament time. The people of God, the believers in the Lord Jesus Christ have worshiped on Sunday.

Interesting that the inevitable association to a “tradition” is made here about Sunday,
because, that is indeed what it is, and one which is historically/documentedly* shown to have begun, not at all by the apostolic Church, but merely out of a base and faithless attempt to distinguish Christians from ca. 70-A.D.-and-increasingly-onward Rome-despised (non-Christian) Jews.**

* See Chapter 7 (p. 215ff) in this research work by Samuele Bacchiocchi.
** See also in Bacchiocchi’s research at pp.167-198ff.
            (And with the book of Hebrews likely written by Paul, and around the time of Roman (Nero) (“fiery”) persecutions (thus ca. early 60's AD, cf. 1 Pet 4:12-13), the counsel in Heb 10:25 may be in the light of Christians already showing this tendency to not make overtly evident their faith when faced with persecutions by not having formal worship gatherings/meetings. They then would later, i.e., post-70 A.D have opted to do this persecutions-aversion by holding their public gatherings/meetings on mainly Sunday instead of Saturdays, as the now despised Jews did.)           

            Historical fact is that early, post Apostolic Church, Christians went on to set up a tradition in the Church by specially honoring Sunday for the Resurrection (which was known as “the Lord’s” i.e., ‘belonging/due to the Lord’ and not actually “the Lord’s Day, and then by what was deem a validating necessity, in order to help differentiate themselves from Jews, that “traditional honoring” was elevated to a holy/(Christian) Sabbath status, and it is actually to that, indeed, “change” early during the days of the Church Fathers, that the (Modern) Roman Catholic Church, which genericly regards that period when the Christian Church was not (sub-)divided (which was right up to at least ca. 431 A.D. -cf. here), as being part of the “Catholic Church” era, pompously states, -as samply cited in here [27:09-39:16ff] and here [01:32:54-01:36:09] (also here  [08:01-11:41] and here [10:17-11:17]) that: ‘it itself had established that “tradition” and made that change in God’s Sabbath Law.’

            Tellingly enough, as Samuele Bacchiocchi recounts here [39:46-41:54ff], his Roman Catholic professor candidly recognized and admitted that his paradigm shifting discovery while researching the change of the Sabbath (documented in here at Ch. 5 pp. 144ff ) which proved that it was not the leaders of the Apostolic Church who had made a change in the Sabbath since documents showed that when they relocated to Pella during the siege on Jerusalem in ca. 66 A.D., they still kept the Seventh Day Sabbath. So that indeed is the “death blow” to the claim that it was the Apostolic Church who made that change of Sunday Sacredness. It was rather later Church Fathers/Leaders (=indeed the ‘(Early) Catholic Church’).

I have been a lot of places in the globe in my lifetime. I have been as far away as Kazakstan in Central Asia and the believers there worship on Sunday. They always have worshiped on Sunday and they continue today to worship on Sunday.

That certainly is not concrete/Biblical proof of the validity of Sunday Sacredness.* It
only shows that this tradition has also reached there. In fact, Christians in Kazakhstan trace back their history to the Eastern Orthodox branch of Christianity which originally started in ca. 1054 in the Great East-West Schism of that era, (and is officially called: the “Orthodox Catholic Church”), and by then, the “tradition” of Sunday was well-enshrined in most of Christianity. Bible Christians however, e.g. the Waldenses (see here), also did not accept this unbiblical tradition of the Catholic Church.                      

* (And there statistically are at least ca. 3,000 (SDA) Christians in Kazakhstan today who observe Saturday as their Sabbath.)

I've been many times to the U.K., to England, Ireland, Scotland and the believers there worship on Sunday. I've been to Belarus, a remarkable, remarkable country that has recently come into prominence for its anti-Christian and even persecuting mentality being displayed by the leaders there and being hard on the church, the believers there meet on Sunday and other countries in the former Soviet Union, Russia, Ukraine, believers meet on Sunday. They meet on Sunday in India. They meet on Sunday in China. They meet on Sunday in the Philippines. They meet on Sunday in New Zealand, Australia. They meet on Sunday in the mountains of Equador among the Indians in the village of Coulta(???) where Patricia and I visited. They meet on Sunday in Brazil in the jungles and in the cities. They meet on Sunday all throughout South America. They meet on Sunday even in Israel.

That again is all merely just proof of a wide-spread tradition, originating many centuries
ago in most cases. There are however Sabbath-keeping congregations in all of those cited country as the countering, mid 19th century+ message of the Biblical Sabbath and its meaning of allegiance to and worship of the Creator God (Rev 10:6; 14:7b = Exod 20:11), has since also been spreading in those places, and around the word.

How did this happen? Why don't they all meet on different days? Why don't some of them meet on Thursday and some of them on Tuesday and some on Wednesday and others on Saturday?

But many there do, (and increasingly so), meet on Saturday, the Biblical Sabbath...

It's always been this way and it's always been this way across the length and breadth of the whole of the Christian church historically.

It actually was not the case during the pre-70 AD days of the (Apostolic) Church. That
misguided tradition only came along after the passing of the apostles. And then, as historically, sampledly, documented here, that man-made, ‘Commandment of God invalidating’ (Matt 15:6), tradition was certainly not “widely” accepted/practiced by all Christians after that.

And I remember this was a bit of a burden to me in my childhood because there were people who put all kinds of strictures on Sunday...everybody met on Sunday. And when I was a little kid, they dressed me up in this little suit and put a little white shirt on me and clipped a little bow tie and made me stay that way the whole day...all of Sunday. And I remember there were very strong restrictions put upon what I could do. I couldn't go out of the house, I couldn't play catch in the yard. I couldn't play ball. When we lived in Philadelphia I couldn't play step ball which was a big thing to do on the steps of the row houses there. We just had to sit there. The one sin we could commit and we could commit that like crazy was gluttony. I was one...was one long meal. We got out of church about twelve thirty, we went home and ate until we went back at night. But it was supposed to be a day when everything sort of came to a grinding halt and we set it aside for contemplation of the Lord, reading of Scripture, reading of Bible stories, reading of Christian books, or theology, talking about the things of the Lord, and most importantly bracketing the day in the morning and the evening with the worship at the church and throw in Sunday School and maybe youth group before Sunday night and it filled up the day.

            It is telling to see that many Christians, indeed most in years before, endeavored to keep Sunday according to the stipulations made in the Bible for the Seventh Day Sabbath. Which “Freudianly” proves that they indeed never had a problem with the Commandment itself, but rather with the day, Saturday, as that was the day that the Jews also kept in such ways, and thus they were being confused with the Jews. And in all of the recent, and really cognitively dissonant, movements to try to not make Sunday a Sabbath, but merely a day when Christians just go to Church for an hour and then do whatever they want, is fulfilled the other part of the Dan 7:25 antichrist prophecy where, on top of the “time”, the “laws” for proper Sabbath observance would also be changed. This is all men self-idolizingly thinking to be a law/authority unto themselves and thinking dictate to God what they will find acceptable to do or not. This Fourth Commandment written in stone by the finger of God just cannot be changed by the, moreover shallow and short-sighted, whims of men.

It was pretty much the way it was across the nation...across the United States of America. I remember when I came to Grace Community Church in 1969 there was only one mall in the San Fernando Valley and it was the first mall that was built here was the Panorama City Mall. Panorama City, this little city that we occupy a portion of was a post-war city where small little houses were built to accommodate veterans coming out of World War II and they built the first mall here and it was never open on Sunday...never open on Sunday. Neither was anything else open on Sunday. Stores were all closed. There were no organized events on Sunday. There were no sports for kids on Sunday. There were no planned activities in the community on Sunday. There actually were laws against that, laws passed by states and by governments.

Sunday was always very different from Saturday. Stores were open on Saturday. People were in motion on Saturday. All the events, all the sporting occasions were scheduled on Saturday, trips, recreation, work around the house, Sunday was a very, very different day and it was recognized that way here, it was recognized that way by our forefathers in the U.K. and in Europe going all the way back to the time of the Reformation and even back behind that.

It apparently went back to the Civil Sunday Law of Constantine in 321 A.D. when
Sunday was then reserved as a day of no work.

I remember the year the local laws here in the San Fernando Valley were changed to allow stores to open on Sunday. Then eventually Sunday became like Saturday, with very little difference. But for literally centuries, Sunday worship and fellowship among Christians worldwide was the habit of the church.
                                                                       
Again, merely evidence of a long-standing “habit”/tradition, but not an evidence of
Biblical authority/validity.

And you could ask the question...Is this simply arbitrary? Did it just kind of happen that way? It would be pretty hard to sell somebody on that idea since you have all these different countries, all these different languages, and all these different centuries and it's an unbroken pattern.

            As this was a major, but spurious, part of the Christian religion, it is not surprising that this supposed Biblical tenet was also accepted in all of those different places, along with the other tenets of Christianity.

How did it get started? Who started it? And why are we still conducting services on Sunday and why do we still have a kind of a deference to Sunday in a five-day work week that ends on Friday? Did this just happen by accident?

Question rather should be, why, with all of the documented anti-Semitic stances,
particularly in Western countries/societies, and the dominance of Christianity in there, is Saturday still defaultly considered as a non-working, =week-end day, instead of a working day!??
            The only answer that makes logical and historical sense to me was that in history, both Saturday and Sunday were originally considered for a while as Sabbath by Christians. It was only later that Christians began to abandon Saturday Sacredness and only observe Sunday. And so that two day no-work/week-end tradition has continued to this day, and also reflects this Saturday abandonment by Christians in favor of only Sunday.

Well many churches had begun to whittle away at Sunday, this in the last 25 years or so. They have reduced Sunday to a one-hour non-intrusive experience you can have on your way to the beach in your bathing suit, if you want. They have minimized Sunday down to this one hour that you can get out of the way in order to accommodate people who don't even want to dent Sunday with that, they accommodate that with a Saturday-night service. You can go to the Saturday-night service and you don't have to pay any attention to Sunday whatsoever. So you can have the whole day at the beach and you can do the Saturday service at night when it's dark and you can't go outside and play anyway. This is typical of the contemporary trend. And people seem to make very little difference between whether people gather on a Saturday or a Sunday, it doesn't seem to be an issue. There are lots of folks who would like to leave Sunday completely free for games, recreation and going to the mall or wherever else they want to go, and throw in a Saturday-night service that just takes a little while, seems to accommodate them readily.

            Quite logically, if you have abrogated God’s Law and stipulation for Sabbath observance and have effectively left it up to individuals to decide for themselves what they will or will not do on Sunday, or really any day of the week which they decide to observe as some sort of holy day, then that is all the perfect acceptable way in which people should be acting, indeed without any pastor, church or authority dictating to them when and/or how they should worship.

Well does it really matter? Is it important for us to do this on Sunday? Couldn't we just as well do it any other day or every other day?

            Funny how Christians are willing to do anything but what God has simply required for His Sabbath. God logically knows the complication of people gathering to formally meet for worship every day, or any other day, or during the work week, and so only required the observance of one day, moreover in a total work-resting way which thus provides both physical and psychological rest as well as helps strengthen the bonds of the family, on top of also providing spare time to help others in need....But man think that they are much wiser than God and have variously sought to establish their own better requirements which just provide none of what God knew to be best.
            I.e. if you worship every day, they you probably are not working, Family activities which exclude God are of no lasting benefit. Worshiping on any day of the week will just end up in being a recluse worship as it would be more difficult to sync schedules then, not to mention the chaos this would cause in work scheduling and flow. It is so much simpler to do it God’s way, particularly as He only recognizes that as the “sign” of those who truly trust in Him as their Creator who does know what is best for them, and thus can in return entrust them with much great light about Him, His Law, and His ways.

Now let's kind of pick up where we left up...left off last time in answering that question. Go to Colossians 2 for a minute. We're just going to follow through some scriptures and I'll kind of let you draw the conclusion. Colossians 2:16, “Therefore no one is to act as your judge in regard to food or drink or in respect to a festival or a new moon or a Sabbath day, things which are a mere shadow of what is to come, but the substance belongs to Christ.”

Remember what I told you last time about the Sabbath day...it is gone. Right? It is gone. So whatever we're talking about on Sunday, we're not talking about the Sabbath.
The Sabbath is surely not gone...Like God’s Ten Commandment Law, it endures for ever.

The Sabbath was the seventh day of the week. It was instituted under the Mosaic Law between the Fall of man and Moses. There were no Sabbath laws. There was no Sabbath observance. That came in the Mosaic Law. Centuries went by, none of the patriarchs had any kind of Sabbath laws.
                       
            As Paul explains, (codified) Law is only given to remind people of something which they are forgetting and violating. So was the case with the Sabbath.

On the seventh day, after creation, you remember God rested and God blessed that day. Why? As a day that would always be a memorial to the fact that God had created the universe in six days, and so the seventh day was always going to be a reminder of God as our Creator. And we worked through that in our last session. Every Saturday that comes along which is the seventh day of the week, Sunday being the first day of the week, every Saturday that comes along is a good day for us to remember, first of all, God is Creator.

...And that Creator reminds us to rest from our works on that day just like He Himself
had rested (Exod 20:8-11). Indeed, in all of its aspects, including socio-economic ones, the Sabbath rest is a reminder that we are not supposed to be continually striving and working to make a living, but are to also recognize that our subsistence ultimately comes from the Creator God, even if He is to provide for this through non-natural, i.e., “super-natural”/miraculous means.
            Both Religious Sunday Observance as well as the socio-economic Capitalistic mindset, would rather have people think that they should be and act independent of God, and merely towards their best interest, in order to advance and thrive. Hence the need to abrogate all what God has religiously and socio-economically mandated for His Sabbath.

And we have that in our heritage. That's why people didn't work on the weekend because Saturday could be a day when you could enjoy the creation, when you could have recreation. You didn't have to go to work. You..this was all a Christian kind of structure. You could go out and take your family and have a picnic or play a ball game, enjoy the outside, enjoy the creation of God. That was part and parcel of remembering God as Creator.

Seems to me that this was only a modern spin by Christians in order to validate why they
were still had regards for Saturday as a holy day. Originally the Sabbath was also regarded as holy because it was well known that it indeed was the Holy Day of God.

We also suggested to you that when the Mosaic Law came along, God ordained a Sabbath day for the people to observe and to obey God and put some restraints on them to remind them of their sinfulness. So every Saturday that comes along kind of has a two-fold role. It causes us to remember God as Creator and to remember how sinful we really are and truly we are sinful.

            That claim is indeed nothing more than a (wishful) “suggestion”. Interesting that sanctifying or making something holy (=set apart) as Ezek 20:12 says, does not necessarily mean that the thing before then was ‘sinful’. It just means that the thing is “set apart” as special. Even Jesus endeavored to make Himself even more “set apart” than He had been, in order to now achieve the redemptive Gospel Truth sacrifice He had been sent to do. (John 17:19). So this claim that the “sanctifying provision of the Sabbath” only was in regards to sinfulness is fundamentally fallacious. In fact, when God had “sanctified” the Sabbath back at Creation, it was before sin. (Gen 2:3). What God had done then was to set apart that Seventh day from the other (also then sinless) days of the week, as a special day of rest.

But the Sabbath is gone. Colossians 2:16 and 17, “Don't let anybody hold you to a Sabbath day.” It's gone, it is part of Judaism that has been replaced by the New Covenant. And the New Covenant has a completely different day. Saturday, as I said, reminds us of God as Creator and God as Law-giver and it reminds us of the beauty of God's creation, the magnificence of His creation and the sinfulness of our own hearts.

            Flawed readings and understandings = erroneous conclusions and theology!!

But when you come to the New Covenant, you have a new kind of observation, not observing God as Creator, not observing God as Law-giver, but in the New Covenant God is defining Himself as...what?...Savior. So the New Covenant has its own day, a day in which we focus on God as our Savior.

...Says who, LOL.... right through Revelation, calls are made to ‘observe God as the
Creator’ (e.g., Rev 10:6, 14:7). Moreover the New Covenant involves God working with those same Old Covenant (non-ceremonial) Laws (Jer 31:33 =Heb 8:7-13). The New Covenant is merely a new way of upholding God’s Law and not an excising of them. Ample, proper NT teaching is quite clear on that.

Let's see how this all kind of happened.

As Sunday texts will be spuriously claimed here, do see their detailed refutation
referenced to above, at the beginning of this blog post.

Go...go to the end of the gospel of Matthew, end of the gospel of Matthew. Suffice it to say, the argument from history is that the church has taken this seriously, that the church has made an issue out of Sunday since the New Testament times. Here we are two thousand years later and the church is still meeting on Sunday. I would say it's pretty deeply embedded. But in Matthew 28, it's the day after the Sabbath, that would be Sunday, Sabbath on Saturday, “As it began to dawn toward the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary came to look at the grave and behold, a severe earthquake had occurred, for an angel of the Lord descended from heaven and came and rolled away the stone and sat upon it. His appearance was like lightning, His clothing as white as snow, the guards shook for fear of Him, became like dead men. The angel said to the women, ‘Do not be afraid for I know that you're looking for Jesus whose been crucified. He's not here for He has risen, just as He said. Come see the place where He was lying. Go quickly, tell His disciples He is risen from the dead and behold, He's going ahead of you into Galilee, there you will see Him, behold I have told you.' Then they left the tomb quickly with fear and great joy and ran to report it to His disciples. And behold, Jesus met them and greeted them and they came up and took hold of His feet and worshiped Him. And Jesus said to them, ‘Don't be afraid, go and take word to My brethren to leave for Galilee and there they will see Me.'”

It is dawn on Sunday morning, familiar scene, right? This is the Sunday when Jesus arose and appeared to Mary Magdalene, to Mary the mother of James. This is resurrection day.

Verse 7, “Go quickly and tell His disciples He has risen from the dead.” Tell them quickly because there's a lot that's going to happen in this day. This is right at daybreak, you remember. Before this event, Sunday had no place in a Jewish calendar...no important place. None, it was not identified as a special day in any sense, religiously or socially. It was like every other day.

            That attempted mental conditioning to see/accept Sunday as some special day of worship is so laughable. Notice how Sunday still has no place, i.e. special naming, in, here, Jewish or Gentile Christian mentality (i.e., the Gospel writers and their audience), as, over 30 years after the resurrections, it is still mentioned only in its relations to the Seventh day Sabbath, thus most technically, merely as “the first day from the Sabbath”. So even then, it was the Seventh Day Sabbath which was still determinative for the days of the week. Indeed only the Sabbath and its “Preparation” day had anything close to a formal name. You’d think that if, for 30 years Christians had been observing Sunday as the Resurrection Day or the (so-called) Lord’s Day, that it would have been most natural for these Gospel writers to refer to it as such in their writings. But they didn’t because it didn’t have any special meaning to them. Only desperate Christians today eisegetically and fallaciously impose this “significance” into such passages today.

But once the Lord rose from the dead on the first day of the week, the first day of the week would never be the same again because if you memorialize the creation on the seventh day, and if you memorialize as it were the Law on the seventh day, you certainly want to memorialize the resurrection, don't you?

Nope....

If you celebrate God as Creator and God as Law-giver, you certainly want to celebrate Him regularly and even more joyfully as Savior.

            It rather is the accepted death of Christ, which was during all of the Sabbath day, which saves the believer (cf. Luke 22:19; Matt 26:27-28; 1 Cor 11:24-25) and not even/actually the secondary event of the resurrection. And it in fact is His atoning death which is pointedly said should be “proclaimed” and ‘remembered’ until He comes (1 Cor 11:24-25, 26; cf. Rom 6:3-7), but not even as a ‘new Sabbath’. No where is the resurrection or resurrection’s day ever given such religious significance.
            Indeed, even when Christ had resurrected from the dead, He did not consider that at evidence that His sacrifice had been acceptable, and had to first go and ascertain this with God the Father. (John 20:17-18). Indeed several, all sinful, people, had been resurrected from the dead through the Bible, and their similar bodily resurrection from the dead as was Christ’s was not proof of anything. The Salvation provided by Christ only revolves around the substitutionary sacrifice He effectuated. Which is why Jesus awarely said at the Cross that just prior to dying:“It is Finished (=”Accomplished”)” and did not wait until after His resurrection to do so.
            And Paul’s statement in 1 Cor 15:12-19ff; (=1 Thess 4:13-18, -discussed here) is pointedly in regards of a “faith” concerning the resurrection of the dead by Jesus Christ (=1 Cor 15:12a).
            So these man-made attempts to conjure up a validating theology for Sunday significance and sacredness just ring hollow when evaluated by the (actual) Word of God!!

By the way, you have the first Sunday worship service in verse 9. They came up and took hold of His feet and worshiped Him. Small service, but a service of worship.

LOL...It ‘circularly’ was not a ‘worship of Sunday’..but a (now fully permitted) worship
of the (heaven-returned* DA 793.3) Jesus Christ.

* (Jesus met with these women some time after they had already reported this to the disciple. Matt 28:10 uses a “dramatic/perfective” present tense to vividly resume the narrative back to the point in Matt 28:8 of Jesus’ instruction to these women, leading back to the events related in Matt 28:11-15. So Matt 28:9 is actually a forward-looking interlude.)

Turn in your Bible to Luke 23 and we're just kind of constructing the scene

...with straw...(=Luke 6:46, 49)

and I'm not going to go into all the detail, we covered it as we closed out the book of Luke, all the things that are happening. But the key thing to think of in that verse, verse 7, is “quickly,” get the message out because this day is going to be packed full. We've got to get this day going early.

            ...But Jesus did not actually meet with His disciples until Sunday evening, after the sun had set, thus moreover on what Jews considered Monday morning...(John 20:19)
                       
Luke 23:55, “The women who had come with Him out of Galilee, followed. Saw the tomb, how His body was laid, returned, prepared spices, perfumes. On the Sabbath day they rested according to the commandment, but on the first day of the week, Luke 24:1, at early dawn, they came to the tomb bringing the spices which they had prepared, they found the stone rolled away from the tomb. They entered, they didn't find the body of Jesus. While they were perplexed about this, two men suddenly stood near them in dazzling clothing, as the women were terrified, bowed their faces to the ground, the men said to them, “Why do you seek the living One among the dead, He's not here, He has risen. Remember how He spoke to you while He was still in Galilee saying, ‘The Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, and be crucified and the third day rise again.' And they remembered His words and returned from the tomb and reported all these things to the eleven and to all the rest. There were Mary Magdalene, Joanna, Mary the mother of James, other women with them, telling thee things to the Apostles. These words appeared to them as nonsense. They wouldn't believe them. Peter got up, ran to the tomb, stooping looking in, saw the linen wrappings only, went away to his home marveling what had happened.”

You remember Peter and John went to the tomb, as the other gospel writers tell us, and they realized the resurrection had taken place. Again it is dawn on Sunday. The women are first. They go back, they report. And more come and the Apostles come and it becomes apparent very, very early in the morning that the Lord is risen and He is alive,
                                                                       
It rather seems from the account in Mark 16:10-14 [albeit if textually valid], as
corroborated by Luke 24:33-43ff, that despite some prior post-resurrection appearances to some of His followers (i.e. Mark 16:9; John 20:11-18; Matt 28:9, 10), including Peter (Luke 24:34; 1 Cor 15:5); the 11 disciples were still, by that Sunday Evening (=Jewish Monday/second weekday,* morning), greatly doubtful/disbelieving, at the very least, that Jesus had fully/bodily resurrected (cf. John 20:8-9 -which may be simply stating that they had (some) ‘faith’, i.e., ‘began to have faith/belief’; versus full-blown belief.). So it is correspondingly highly doubtful that, as typically implied from such claims, that the disciples would have already settled a ‘Sunday/Resurrection’s Day “Sabbath/Holy Day” cult/theology in their minds and were assembling to establish and celebrate it, particularly if they still did not yet understand that this was moreover a Biblical/Prophetic event. (John 20:9; Luke 24:44-46)

* In John 20:19, John is using a different Roman, Sunrise to Sunrise, day reckoning system, which actually neatly resolves the infamous “Synoptic problem” about the day (=Thursday Night) of the Last Supper.

which means that He has accomplished redemption on the cross, He has been raised for our justification. He has conquered sin and death and hell. He has borne our sins in His own body on the cross, been made sin for us and He has risen from the dead in triumph.

(=Luke 24:47)

And it's still early. Again the same day, verse 13, “Two of them are going that very day, it's still first day, still a Sunday, to a village named Emmaus about seven miles from Jerusalem. Talking to each other about all these things that had taken place, and while these two disciples were talking and discussing, Jesus Himself approached and began traveling with them. Their eyes were prevented from recognizing Him and He said to them, ‘What are these words that you're exchanging with one another as you're walking?' And they stood still, looking sad and one of them named Cleopas answered and said to Him, Are You the only one visiting Jerusalem and unaware of the things that are happening here these days? How can you not know what's going on?'”

“And He said, ‘What things?' And they said to Him, ‘The things about Jesus the Nazarene who was a prophet mighty in deed and word in the sight of God and all the people and how the chief priests and our rulers delivered Him to the sentence of death and crucified Him and we were hoping that it was He who was going to be the Redeemer of Israel, besides all this, it is the third day since these things happened.'” And that mattered, of course, you remember, because He said He would rise on the third day and they didn't have that information yet. Well at least they didn't believe it yet.

“Some women amazed us when they were at the tomb early in the morning and didn't find His body. They came saying that they had a vision of angels who said He was alive.” They hadn't really owned that...they hadn't believed that. “He said, ‘O foolish men and slow of heart, verse 25, to believe in all the prophets have spoken. Was it not necessary for Christ to suffer these things, enter into His glory and beginning with Moses and all the prophets He explained to them things concerning Himself and all the scriptures?' They approached the village where they were going, He acted as though He was going to go further. They urged Him saying, ‘Stay with us, it's getting toward evening, the day is now nearly over.' So He went in to stay with them. When He had reclined at table with them, He took the bread and blessed it, breaking it He began giving it to them. Their eyes were opened, they recognized Him and He vanished from their sight.”

Quite a day...quite a day. In the morning He appears to the Apostles

            As cited above, the Bible only relates that He had appeared to Peter, not the other 10 disciples/apostles.

and the women, in the afternoon He appears to these two on the road to Emmaus, two disciples unnamed for Cleopas, the other one unnamed. But there's more yet...there's more yet.

According to verse 32, “They said to one another, ‘Were not our hearts burning within us while He was speaking to us on the road, while He was explaining the Scripture to us?' And they got up that very hour and returned to Jerusalem and found gathered together the eleven and those who were with them saying, ‘The Lord has really risen and has appeared to Simon.' And they began to relate their experience on the road and how He was recognized by them in the breaking of the bread.”

Boy, this is some Sunday.

            Yet nothing done on that day was meant for a Seventh-day Sabbath replacing/Sunday Sacredness purpose.

And by the way, you had the first Sunday worship and you also had the first Sunday sermon. It's in verses 25 to 27, “O foolish men and slow of heart, to believe in all the prophets had spoken, was it not necessary for Christ to suffer these things, enter into His glory? And He began with Moses and the prophets, expounding to them the things concerning Himself in all the scriptures.” The first sermon was an expository sermon on the first Sunday. First worship service, the first Sunday,...

            Cute...but (1) ‘gathering to having a meal’, (on Sunday Evening=Monday Morning no less) is not “Sunday worship”; nor is (2) the reading, even expository presentation, of Scripture, something which Jesus probably had similarly done on any day of the week. Luke 4:16-21 is a much clearer model of Jesus’ ‘worshiping’ and ‘sermonizing (or at least attempting to (Luke 4:22-30))’.

...and it's not over...it's not over. They, having come to realize Jesus was alive, run back to Jerusalem, the seven miles, and they found the eleven and those who were gathered with them and told them the Lord had really risen. Then it got really interesting, verse 36, “While they were telling these things, He Himself stood in their midst and said to them, ‘Peace be to you.' They were startled and frightened and thought they were seeing a spirit. And He said to them, ‘Why are you troubled and why do doubts arise in your hearts? See My hands and My feet that it is I Myself, touch Me and see, for a spirit doesn't have flesh and bones as you see that I have.' When He had said this, He showed them His hands and His feet and while they couldn't believe it because of their joy and amazement, He said to them, ‘Have you anything here to eat?' They gave Him a piece of boiled fish, took it and ate it with them.” And now they know, they know that all the things written about Me and the Law of Moses and the prophets and the Psalms are being fulfilled.

            Rather, they did not “know” what the Bible taught about what they were witnessing (Luke 24:48) until Jesus next also explained it to them. (Luke 24:44-47)

John's chronicle is also quite interesting. Turn to John chapter 20 and again we're not trying to cover details but just give you the big picture. John chapter 20 verse 1, “The first day of the week, Mary Magdalene came early to the tomb, just before dawn, saw the stone already taken away from the tomb, ran and came and told Simon Peter and the other disciples.” They go through the same wonderful story. This is the account of Simon Peter who arrive, they find the face cloth and the linen wrappings, this is the occasion when Mary Magdalene is confronted by Jesus and says in verse 18, “I have seen t he Lord.”

Now we pick up the story in chapter 20 verse 19, that we left off in Luke 24. “When it was evening on that day,” the two from Emmaus have come back to the upper room where the eleven are, it's the first day of the week. Note that, would you? In verse 19, “When it was evening on that day, the first day of the week.” No wonder Jesus said, “Go quickly and tell everybody,” because by all the running back and forth, time is elapsing, it's important that all these occasions of the visible Christ manifesting Himself be able to happen on that first day.

That also is quite cute/comical...So now that’s how God establishes a
commandment....by, moreover circumventingly, having others merely announce a factual news. Jesus is quite capable of, and that quite clearly/explicitly, making “new commandment and/or teaching” statements Himself. (E.g., (John 13:34; 15:12, 17)

-Again, and unlike the pivotal post Jerusalem destruction era when John was writing this Gospel, in ca. 90-95 A.D., back on the day of the resurrection, the way that, at least Jesus, -as seen from his Thursday Evening (=Nisan 14 Passover Meal; cf. Deut 16:6), and thus surely also His 11 disciples were reckoning days, that “Sunday Evening” of John would have been naturally considered as Monday/Second weekday morning for them. So the later cultural reckoning switch by John cannot determine the prior Jewish understanding back in 31 A.D.

So it is the first day of the week and the doors were shut. You remember that Luke said they were afraid and startled when He arrived? Of course because the doors were shut. He came through the wall.

            Actually, moreover as Jesus was not at all a Spirit, but was fully in bodily form (Luke 24:37-43), it therefore is evidently that, as in many other instances in the Bible, their eyes/minds had been made not to be able to physically see Christ amongst them, and/as He entered that room through the opened door when they did. (=DA 802.1)

“He came and stood in their midst and said to them, ‘Peace be with you.'” And He said, “Peace be with you,” because they were no doubt in a state of panic when He appeared. Panicked because they thought He was dead and panicked because the door was locked. “He showed them His hands and His side. The disciples then rejoiced when they saw the Lord.”

            Which is proof that Jesus was indeed fully in bodily form, a reassurance which would be moot, if he needed to first have been in spirit form to “go through walls”. As presented and amply substantiated in this post, I fundamentally don’t, and have found no convincing, let alone Biblical, reason to have any “hocus pocus”/magic view of God, and rather have seen ample, most logical and elucidating reasons to believe that God does things, even thing we don’t understand and consider “super-natural”, through, and out of, concrete, realistic, even scientific reasons. So a bodily Jesus, who, as a now permanently flesh and blood creature, thus cannot alternate between being a spirit (as the angels are) and in human form, would indeed require God limiting the sight of these disciples so that they cannot see Jesus right in their midst all along, and having entered the room through the door with them. (DA 802.1) Perhaps God even generally or specifically mentally deadened any nervous sensation they may have experienced if they brushed up against Jesus as He possibly crowded between them to enter the room before they shut the door.

“Jesus said to them again, ‘Peace be with you, as the Father has sent Me, I also send you.'” He gives them a reiteration of the commission,

            If that is what is meant/implied here, the episode of Matt 28:16-20 when the “Great Commission” was given occurred after this statement in John 20:21. So this (as also Luke 24:49) was rather the initial indicating and expressing of that commission.

and then He breathes on them and says to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit.” And this is a preview promise of the reception of the Holy Spirit. What a day...what a day!

            Interestingly enough, as discussed in here, that gifting of the Holy Spirit was beneficial towards the disciples first putting away all of their base, petty and selfish, ‘disunifying’ differences between them, as pre-conditionally due (John 17:22-23; cf. John 16:7-10), during the 50 days prior to the Day of Pentecost fuller outpouring. (AA 36.1-37.3) And they indeed succeeded becoming “in one accord” by that day. (Acts 2:1 NKJV)     
            So here either, there is nothing which contributes to the establishment of a new, or New Covenant(’s), Sabbath/Holy Day.

By Friday night when Jesus is dead, their hopes are smashed and crushed and dashed. The best that they can imagine is that they can rest on the Sabbath because they can't do any work or take any kind of trip,

Interestingly enough, if the disciple wanted to take a trip to flee Jerusalem out of fear of
also being hunted down and executed like Jesus, they could have (lawfully) done so by Saturday evening. But they did not. In fact, they probably only became in fear of the Jews only after the reports that the body of Jesus was no longer in its tomb began circulating, which indeed is a scenario that the Jews thought that they could have fraudulently done. (Matt 27:62-66)

so even the women who were going to anoint His body have to wait till the Sabbath's over and they'll go and do it, it will be a nice thing to do, anoint the corpse of Jesus. That was the best that they could have hoped for was some act of kindness to the dead body of the one they had put their trust in.
                                   
By the time that Sunday is over, they all know Jesus is alive from the dead. Peter knows it, John knows it, Mary Magdalene knows it, the other Marys, the other women know it, other disciples know it. And by Sunday evening, all the disciples know it with one exception, who was absent? Thomas...Thomas was absent.

And merely “knowing” that transpired fact, moreover ‘on a day’ does not prove anything
in regards to establishing a new day of worship. In fact, worshiping the resurrection, as being do here, (and moreover out of people’s own self-conjecturing), as would be the case with any other teaching/commandment of God/Christ, would be a form of idolatry, most pertinently resembling the way in which the Post-Exilic Jews made a god out of the Sabbath, and likewise lead to the actual ignoring of Jesus Christ. The God-Jesus Himself, which is reflected in His Divine Character, is to be worshiped, and not His Resurrection, or the day of that resurrection, solely because He is Lord/God, and not even because He resurrected from the dead. (Phil 2:5-11|Heb 1:1-6ff) Again many people have already been resurrected from the dead (by God)...and that itself does not make them worthy of worship, nor the day when they were resurrected!!
            And, most interestingly, a unique attribute of God/Jesus is that He is the Creator, and succinctly said, it is the observance Seventh Day Sabbath which rightly and solely provides for the due worshiping of this Creator God/Jesus. (Rev 14:7)

            And it is also quite pertinent to see how Christians have effectively, variously made a god out of “faith” to the point where they think they thus can ignore, and not obey, the God of that faith. (=Luke 6:46-47ff; cf. James 2:14-20ff)

Pick it up in John 20:21, “Jesus said to them, ‘Peace be with you, as the Father has sent Me, I send you,' breathed on them, said, ‘Receive the Holy Spirit.'” Verse 24, “But Thomas, one of the Twelve called Didymus was not with them when Jesus came.” Such a doubter, was probably off in the corner saying, “I was right, I had every reason to doubt.”

“So the other disciples were saying to him, ‘We've seen the Lord.' But he said to them, ‘Unless I see in His hand the imprint of the nails, put my finger in the place of the nails, put my hand into His side, I won't believe.'” This is fabulous, verse 26, “After eight days His disciples were again inside.” What day would that be? Sunday. Nothing happened in the seven days in between, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, nothing happens in the week in between.

Actually “after” eight days would rather imply: ‘the day after the 8th day’; which would
be a Monday (Evening), and definitely so if inclusive reckoning, which would have counted the first Sunday as “Day 1”, was not used here.

It is not until that eighth day that the disciples again are gathered together. Were they gathered together in the other days? You better believe they were. I mean, they were hiding. Jesus came, the doors having been shut again, stood in their midst and said, “Peace be with you.”

            Which would rather mean that a ‘hiding gathering’ and appearance on a Monday (Evening) was also, just as easily/likely, possible.
            And debunking of all debunkings, there apparently are two quite logical, Biblical reasons why (a) the disciples were gathered together on those two Sunday evenings, and also why Jesus chose that time to meet with them. It has nothing to do with a ‘New Covenant Sunday worship gathering’, but most contradictorily enough, because the disciples were, having no reason (yet) not to, most faithfully observing the Law of Moses (at Num 28:16-25, 26ff) which stipulated that on the day after the Passover, Nisan 15, thus that Sunday since the Passover (Nisan 14) had been the day before, Sabbath (=John 19:31), they were to have a holy convocation (Num 28:16-17). Then they were to have another one 7 (inclusive) days later (Num 28:25) which thus would fall on the next Sunday. So it was most apparently in obedience to this requirement that the disciples had these two evening “convocations”, and this was manifestly the only two times during that Holy/Festal week that they were all gathered together. They probably spent the rest of that week individually hiding, but on those two days, still believing that they had to adhere to the Law of Moses, -and also having had the recent example of Jesus likewise following it for their Passover/Last Supper gathering (see Luke 22:7-13, 14|Matt 26:17-19, 20), they courageously gathered together in that same Passover Upper Room, and out of fear of the Jews raiding them, they “shut”* the room’s doors** (John 20:19, 26).

* Which could be equivalent to our, more criminal/violent, day’s added/also “locking of shut/closed doors”, and/or could merely be, like the closing of window blinds, for privacy/secrecy reasons, so that a passer by would not recognizingly see them, -and they were indeed “wanted” (cf. Matt 28:13), all gathered there and report them to the authorities.)

** I.e. manifestly all the “doors” (plural), starting with the lower floor’s front/entrance door, [photo] of the traditional location, (called “the Cenacle”).

            So Jesus, knowing that this would be the best time to meet with them since they were going to all be gathered in one place (cf. Matt 28:10, 16), chose to meet with them on these two Sunday evenings, merely for that technical and efficient reason...and thus not, as being assumed, out of any ‘Sunday Sanctifying, Theological agenda’ impetus.

“He said to Thomas, ‘Reach here with your finger and see My hands, reach here with your hand and put it into My side. Do not be unbelieving, but believing.' Thomas answered and said to Him, ‘My Lord and my God.' Jesus said to him, ‘Because you have seen Me, have you believed. Blessed are they who did not see and yet believed.'”

Many other signs than the ones written here, John says, could be written about the work of Christ. But the point that I want you to notice is, Sunday all of a sudden became a very, very special day. Jesus makes two miraculous post-resurrection appearances to the disciples, both of them on a Sunday, both of them on a Sunday. It is on a Sunday that they know He is alive from the dead. It is on a Sunday that they know the Old Testament is being fulfilled. It is on a Sunday that they know the Father has affirmed His redemptive work on the cross. It is on a Sunday that He pledges to them that they will receive the Holy Spirit to be empowered for ministry in the future. It is on a Sunday that all the past of His ministry and His death comes to make sense and what a Sunday.

            Not only do none of these acts/signs establish a new Holy Day, it is highly debatable that most of them took place on what the disciples had (originally) considered/reckoned to still be “Sunday”/the First day.

Jesus rose from the dead on that Sunday. Appeared on that Sunday in the morning. Appeared on that Sunday in the afternoon. Appeared on that Sunday in the evening. Showed Himself alive to the women on that Sunday. They had the first worship service on that Sunday. Jesus preached the first sermon on that Sunday. Met two disciples on that Sunday. Broke bread with them and disclosed Himself to them and then miraculously vanished. He met that night with the eleven, minus Thomas on that Sunday, and twice pronounced peace on them and ate with them. He must have taught several times on that Sunday, not only on the road to Emmaus but no doubt in the upper room again as He told them that He had indeed come to fill the Old Testament promises.

            All this is at the very best mere/wishful “Theological conjecture” and no “Thus saith the Lord”!! By such a whimsical and subjective standard, many other similar “idolatrous” laws/beliefs can be conjured up from the Bible.

On that Sunday He told His disciples that forgiveness of sins was now available through what He had accomplished and it was available to all who would repent and believe. On that Sunday He stated the great commission that they were to go out and proclaim the gospel. He launched, as it were, the unlimited worldwide mission of evangelism by commissioning His disciples and Apostles to take the gospel and proclaim it to the ends of the world. And on that Sunday, as I said, He pledged to them that they would have the power of the Holy Spirit. The great New Covenant had been ratified. Forgiveness of sins for all sinners of all ages who came to God was accomplished...what a day...what a day! And it was a Sunday, and prior to that Sunday had absolutely no significance...none. But from that day on, Sunday took on a completely different meaning. Sundays would never be the same again.

Manifestly, for some reason, Jesus was in a hurry that day, not remaining with the
disciples that night, and not reappearing until after eight days later. So He took the opportunity of the time He had on that day to relate many elucidating things to His disciples, -particularly as these disciples were quite confused about all that had shockingly transpired over those three eventful days So there is nothing theologically determinative about a new Holy Day from those actions and statements by Christ.
            Moreover, as discussed earlier, Jesus had deliberately done many signs/miracles/healings on the Sabbath, and that was all to reform the Sabbath as a day ‘for doing good’ (Matt 12:12) and showing that He is the Lord of the Sabbath. (Matt 12:8). It furthermore makes no sense for Jesus to have, and that, inherently life-threatenedly, done such deliberate and clear reformings of the Sabbath, to then later, moreover silently, do away with it. At the very least, like had clearly done with the passing, and likewise “Capital” Temple Institution (Matt 23:37-24:2), which He also did some peripheral reforms therein (John 2:13-22), He would have similarly explicitly stated that: ‘the (corrupted) Sabbath Day would be replaced by the Day when He would resurrect’. But He did not, because He never intended to (=Matt 5:17-20).
            Then also, there is the interesting typology presented here [09:05ff]&here by Stephen Bohr from the manna’s episode. Indeed, and with Jesus clearly, Spiritually associating Himself with that manna (John 6:47-58; =Matt 26:26-28; 1 Cor 11:23-26), the “miracle” associated with it was that it did not experience corruption only on God’s Seventh Day Sabbath (Exod 16:22-26). Likewise, Jesus’ body, and though He had fully died, was not allowed to see corruption (=Acts 2:27-32; -which manifestly would technically by being death for over 3 days). So, as copiously found elsewhere, even from OT days and the Old Covenant’s Economy, God was merely representing His Ultimate Will, as later seen in what He would do in the New Covenant (Jer 31:31-34), and which is to be done by a bringing the fullest and most concrete meanings in those OT “tutoring” Instructions. So, in regards here to the Sabbath, it is not at all in replacing it with another day, but, and, as already discussed, as Jesus deliberately, clearly modeled throughout His ministry, it is in providing the fullest meaning and proper intent of that same, special, Seventh Day.
            Indeed, as already expounded upon, as also stated in that John 6:47-58 explanation, the whole and full significance and worthiness of Christ is all in His perfect, i.e., self-spotless/sinless/uncorrupted sacrifice/death, and not actually in His resurrection. And really, Jesus, knowing as a fact that He himself was sinless, and therefore not being surprised when God raised Him from the dead, really pointedly wanted to ascertain that His death (and not His Resurrection) had been sufficient to provide forgiveness for the death penalty of man.
            So quite solemnly/seriously, Christians should actually be celebrating Christ’s (sacrificial) death, -which itself, as the focal point of God’s Gospel (John 3:14-16), is what provides the victory over sin’s penalty of death (2 Tim 1:10), thus not in/on “Sunday/Easter” Celebrations, but rather on a Saturday/Sabbath “Communion”/Supper/“Agape” Feast/Festival, indeed just as Jesus Himself clearly modeled/instituted (necessarily before he died) (=1 Cor 11:26). And clearly, from His ensuing statements in Matt 26:29|Mark 14:25|Luke 22:18, Jesus Himself did not have, nor model, nor instructed, nor implied, any type of Resurrection “Easter”/“Breaking Bread” Communion Meal after He was raised from the dead, -let alone now, on a Sunday.
            Indeed, as the Bible clearly teaches, binding requirements which are to be implemented in a covenant/testament, must all be stated/made before the death of the testator, and not after. (Heb 9:15-22) Jesus did indeed to this in regards to the new covenant ‘sealing/ratifying it with His own blood’ (Matt 26:27-28|1 Cor 11:25 = Heb 9:18-20|Exod 24:1-8), but that was only after having set out, throughout His prior 3 years of ministering what would still be intactly binding and in effect, and what would not, in/for this New Covenant. So Jesus did this stipulating in regard to major Jewish Economy Institutions such as, e.g., the Temple (John 4:20-24; cf. 2:19-22; Matt 23:38; Acts 6:13-14); and sacrifices/ceremonies related the forgiveness sins (e.g., Mark 2:5-12; Matt 26:28; cf. John 1:29, 36), but in regards to the likewise major institution of the Seventh Day Sabbath, He did not ‘transfer its keeping to Sunday’ or ‘permit frivolous/personal/secular laborious work to be done on it’, but instead, and at the great peril of His own life and ministry, (e.g. John 5:16-18 =(recorded/reported) Sabbath Healing #3, with 4 more done afterwards [see the chronological listing of the 7 at the beginning]; -see their escalation in Healing #4 in Matt 12:13-16|Mark 3:5-6|Luke 6:10-11], thus showing how important this covenantal task was, -(indeed with Jesus not even taking such risk for the keeping of certain (pilgrimage) feasts (John 7:1-9)), He recursively/repeatedly kept deliberately acting in ‘good-doing ministry/healings’ to reform (not replace) it, and that, pointedly in regards to its downtrodden/ignored (also OT existing (Isa 58)) Full/Spiritual significance!!

            All of the “grasping at (vacuous) straws” (by MacArthur here) in order to attempt to give a Biblical/Theological justification for Sunday Sacredness reminds me of the defiance of Luther to those who wanted to put him to death for not going by their various man-made, and Scripture voiding, traditions, namely: ‘show me clearly from the Bible, and not men’s reasonings, that the Fourth Commandment has been changed by God’, otherwise, I too will continue to obey what God has clearly and enduringly said!!

Sunday became New Covenant resurrection day in their minds because God had chosen that day.

            How convoluted... Most logically/simply rather: ‘Sunday was the day of the resurrection because it, as the third day since the death of Christ, the resurrection occurred on that day.’ Nothing unbiasedly more, or factually even less. God merely chose the ‘third day’, whenever that would have fallen, and not “Sunday” per se.... God however has explicitly and eternally chosen, set apart/made holy/sanctified the Seventh Day!! (Gen 2:2-3)
            And even more matter of factly, as with/for Passover, Christ also did timely fulfill the waving of the first fruits typology (cf. 1 Cor 15:20, 23), so it was only natural, being actually “lawful”, i.e., ‘according to the Law of Moses’ that Christ’s resurrection from the dead typologically occur on that day after Passover.

 If the seventh day was designed by God for delighting in Him as Creator, and then having been corrupted by the Fall,

            The Fall did not make unholy nor corrupt God’s Sabbath Day...

if the seventh day was also designed by God to put fear in the heart because of the violation of His holy Law.......here was another day. This was not a day to celebrate creation or to celebrate sin...or the sinfulness of sin,

            Pure/Proven circularly/superficially assuming non-sense....

this was a day to celebrate salvation. Resurrection was the dawning of a new day and so the New Covenant has a new day. The Sabbath is gone and the new day has come and it is the day of celebration of the work of Christ.

            As already, detailingly corrected above, it is the death itself of Christ, which occurred on the Sabbath, which contributes to salvation, and not even the Resurrection. That may be a long-held assumptions by Christians, but it does not check out Biblically.

Now it doesn't end there. Why eight days later? The Lord was saying something about Sundays, instituting a New Covenant day of commemoration.

            ....More wishful/circular and unbiblical reasoning...

Turn to Acts 2 and let me reinforce that a little bit, Acts 2. “When the day of Pentecost had come, they were all together in one place and suddenly there came from heaven a noise like a rushing violent wind and filled the whole house where they were sitting and there appeared to them tongues as of fire...not actual fire but looked like fire...distributing themselves and they rested on each one of them and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other languages, as the Spirit was giving utterance.” This was the coming of the Holy Spirit.

            As, as MacArthur later also cites, Pentecost was to come 50 (inclusive) days after the waving of the firstfruits (Exod 23:16; Deut 16:9-10), it therefore, merely by that fact, would come on a Sunday.

As Jesus had promised when it says He breathed on them in John 20, that was a promise, that was a pledge that was fulfilled on the Day of Pentecost. Here is a monumental fulfillment of prophecy.

            Actually the Pentecost outpouring was a fuller giving of the Holy Spirit this time, since the ‘earlier rain’ had done its work to “reform” the group of disciple, making them fit to be optimal witnesses, this Second, (relatively) ‘latter’ outpouring thus provided the needed/tangible assistance for them to carry out that work. (=Luke 24:48-49; Acts 1:4-5, 8)

By the way, go back to chapter 1 verse 8, “You will receive power,” Acts 1:8, “when the Holy Spirit has come upon you.” He's coming and it was not long after Jesus made that promise that the Spirit did come. And the Spirit came, as we all know, to empower believers to fulfill the commission of proclaiming the glorious gospel as well as to affirm their faith, to seal their faith, to give them assurance and confidence, to give them internal testimony to the validity of the gospel. Jesus had made this promise repeatedly. John 14:16, “I will ask the Father, He will give you another Helper that He may be with you forever, the Spirit of truth whom the world can't receive because it doesn't know Him or see Him, but you know Him because He abides with you and will be in you. I will not leave you as orphans, I will come to you.”

Literally...I will come to you in the Holy Spirit who is the Spirit of Christ. Jesus makes this promise, John 14, John 15, John 16, again and again and again. The Spirit's going to come, He's going to take up residence in you. He is literally going to baptize you in to My body, making one the church. He is going to give you gifts, spiritual gifts and enablements. He's going to give you power for evangelism. And the Spirit did come as promised.

And fascinating, isn't it, that it happens on the Day of Pentecost? This is when the church was born.

            Seems most sequitur to me that the Church was inceptively born on the very instant when Jesus knowingly and deliberately chose 12 disciples (Mark 3:13-19 & Matt 16:13-20, 21), clearly to re-form the disorganized and lost, 12-tribe, Israel, thus to form a re-newed Israel (Matt 19:28; Luke 22:30; cf. James 1:1). That already gathered “church” was then merely “empowered”, first, for necessary preliminary, internal reforms in John 21:22-23; and then later for their outreach work, on the day of Pentecost (Acts 2:1).
            And notice that, unlike what MacArthur is trying to conjecture here, there is no association being made in Acts/the Bible with ‘“Sunday”, or the Resurrection Day, & this outpouring of the Holy Spirit’; but rather, typologically with the Old Covenant’s/Law of Moses Feast of Pentecost. So clearly the Biblical key to understanding the outpouring of the Holy Spirit is to be found in the typology of the feast of Pentecost and not in ‘Sunday’s Resurrection event’. Even the association of First Fruits and the Sunday Resurrection, actually fully points to what Jesus went on to do that day when He briefly ascended to Heaven (see 3SP 201.2-203.1), and not merely on the fact that He Himself had resurrected. In fact, the other OT saints who had resurrected on that day (Matt 27:52-53) were also contributive to that ‘harvest’s first fruit waving’ typology.

This is when the disciples were empowered. This is the first baptizing work of Christ as He baptizes believers by means of the Spirit into His body. This is the day when the Kingdom comes to life. This is a glorious, marvelous day.

            Again more biased, merely circularly assuming, extrapolations...

And you remember that in chapter 2 verse 14 Peter stands up, gives this great sermon concerning the significance of the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. He says in verse 23, “This man delivered over by the predetermined plan and foreknowledge of God, you nailed to a cross by the hands of godless men, put Him to death. But God raised Him up again, putting an end to the agony of death since it was impossible for Him to be held in its power.

            It would seem unnecessary to state, but the mere preaching of a sermon, by a disciple no less, does not suddenly write, or re-write a Commandment given by God. Jesus gave the clear template in Matt 5-7 of how He would do any amendment to His Law, including the Ten Commandments, and all of His “legislative amendments” only lead to a deeper understanding and application of them which does not at all invalidate the letter of the Law. Thus was the pressing, leading need of MacArthur in these sermons, to try to whimsically paint the Sabbath as being merely symbolic, and that for/of sin no less. That actually borders on blasphemy. As stated earlier from the Bible’s Exod 16 manna typology, the Sabbath, as it indeed does for its rightly observing adherent, serves as a sanctifying preservation from sin. (=Exod 31:13; Ezek 20:12; LS 96.1b*)

* It is indeed quite telling to me to historically, factually/statistically and/or documentedly see how God gave a much fuller gifting of His Spirit of Prophecy to those who came to fully observe all of His commandments starting in the 1840's and formed the (now justly rejected) Remnant Church organization (=Rev 12:17, 14:12; 19:10); and how, through that Spirit of Prophecy gift, those who have followed its various and extensive contemporary Divine counseling have come to avoid many of the trial-and-error, pain-or-pleasure, ensnaring pitfalls, whether in regards to e.g., obedience & sanctification; temperance; diet; health; dress reform; ministry; education; (10%) tithing; Sabbath’s Rest; etc, that many by today have circuitously, increasingly begun to see such Biblical light. (And in many of those issues is merely a return to the Biblical stances and standards that Christians had in the mid+ 19th century, which SDA inherited/adopted, and then were “sealed” by God’s Spirit through EGW’s Spirit of Prophecy gift in maintaining, and when applicable, furthering these Biblical standards.) But as involved, and derived from, the proper observing of God’s Sabbath, those who had straightly followed God’s SOP directives and counsels, had come to that “sanctifying” state/realization by having effective obeyed to voice of God through speaking through His prophet, and not by having literally hit various walls (cf. Amos 7:7-9) which thus made them realize that God had been right all along....not to most objectively and factually mention, that “member-per-member” what the SDA Church has been able to (albeit relatively), institutionally, globally, extensively do through the guidance of the SOP is just unrivaled and unmatched in Christendom, -not even by the (2nd closest) 1.25 billion  member Roman Catholic Church! (See here with its Note)...
            ....And then there is still much more than can be done by the Sabbatically-sealed, Rev 7:4-8 (new) Remnant Organization which will come to fully/truly heed what God’s Sabbath is all about as stated in Isa 58 and modeled by Jesus Christ Himself.
            This, made-to-be quasi-conundrum adversarial development in Christianity here is all akin to some University Students claiming that learning can only be done through ad hoc lab experiments and field demonstration (=‘led only by the Spirit’) vs. other students who claim that learning can only be done through classroom work (=laws/standards, doctrines, counsels). The actual Truth rather is, (as stated at the end of this Note), that both approach are valid, but only when each is fully infused with the other. I.e. Lab/Field work must reflect the established laws and principles taught in the classroom, -lest some serious, even catastrophic results occur; while having only book-knowledge without any proven/working demonstration is of no practical/tangible value or benefit. So both a “right-minded Spirit” and “right-guiding laws” are needed for this Higher Learning to achieve its intended objective.

Then he goes on to preach from Psalm 16 an exposition of the promised resurrection of the Messiah. And it has a phenomenal impact when they heard it, verse 37, they're pierced to the heart. He says, “Repent, be baptized for the forgiveness of sin, receive the gift of the Holy Spirit,” three thousand people are converted.

            The day in which that sermon was preached, even if it were God New/True Sabbath, would not actually determine the response from the hearers of it. The Free Will response of those people, variously impressed by the working of the Holy Spirit in those who proclaimed these truths to them, is what resulted in 3,000 people accepting this truth. Surely not every subsequent growth of the Apostolic Church (e.g. Acts 4:1-4) only occurred on Sundays. In fact, there is concrete evidence that the Apostles would have done much of their preaching on the Sabbath, when not only Jews, but, debunkingly enough, also seeking/God-fearing Gentiles gathered for worship. (Acts 13:14, 42-44; 15:19-21; 16:12-15; 18:4) The record is consistently clear, The “Day of Worship” of the Apostolic Church was on the Seventh Day Sabbath...It was indeed only in the post-Apostolic days of the Early Church that the Sunday Sacredness tradition was conjured up, all to basely distinguish Christians from the by the post 70 A.D. greatly despised Jews...and likely through using some of the same vacuous rationales as attempted by MacArthur here!!

Why am I bringing this into the discussion? Did you ever wonder what day of the week it was on Pentecost? Do you know what day of the week it was? Just happened to be Sunday. It just happened to be Sunday.

Indeed “it just happened to be Sunday”. Sunday never had any Theological meaning
before, or after, so it indeed was mere happenstance that this outpouring occurred on that day, which as MacArthur rightly recognizes next, was merely in order to fulfill the typology of a Old Covenant Feast.

According to Leviticus 23:16, the Feast of Weeks, Pentecost, was designated to dedicate the firstfruits of the harvest of wheat, that would be May, June. It is called Pentecost, pente meaning five, because it occurred fifty days after the Sabbath, preceding the Feast of Firstfruits. So you have a Sabbath plus 50 days. Simple calculation.

A Sabbath plus seven Sabbaths, 49, would fall on a Sabbath, right? So 50 would be the first day of the next week. It's Sunday again. Pentecost happens on a Sunday. As unique as this is, all these references are short of commanding us to observe the first day of the week as if it had some special sort of Mosaic significance.

            That sequiturly and straigtforwardly is because God never intended for that day to be a new Sabbath. Indeed it was merely to start/mark the count towards the normative Seventh Day Sabbath. In fact much of the quasi-secular, mere subsistence, fields-borne reckoning and work involved in the celebration of this feast would be quite burdensome for a Seventh Day Sabbath Day. So that is probably why God made it be celebrated on the day after His Sabbath.

We don't have any New Testament commands regarding the first day of the week.

And that really settles the issue here and there is a NT enduring command to observe the
Seventh Day...

We just have the very obvious fact that God filled that day with the most significant events in the founding of the church, namely the resurrection of Jesus Christ and the arrival of the Spirit of God.

            ....And yet, and also if those events were not mere natural chronological/sequential happenstance,  that just still is, indeed, not a “command” from Christ or God.  Surely the Lawgiver would have been more explicit and clear if He was here acting to change the time and law of His Sabbath. So what we rather have here is an admission that Sunday Sacredness is not at all based on a Word from God, but rather on an assuming tradition of men. (=Matt 15:6) Indeed that is how it came about since its instituting by Early Church Fathers around the 2nd Century AD. Most telling, as clearly evident by a complete absence of didactic instructing in NT writings, that none of the Apostles ever came to such an inferring understanding and conclusion.

The events of the resurrection and the birth of the church and the empowerment of the church, the completion of salvation, the coming of the Holy Spirit, these glorious foundational realities that are at the very heart of our redemption, these are the realities that replaced the shadows and the forms of the Sabbath, they happen on a Sunday and the Lord then has picked out His own day. And just as I told you this morning when He appointed twelve Apostles, He left the leaders of Israel behind. When our Lord established the first day, He left the seventh day behind. The Mosaic Law for the seventh day is passed away.                     

            The Pharisee can, or will, testify that even the best intentioned traditions are really based on mere circumstantial understandings, which, in this case involving the Ten Commandments, fall way short of a matchingly authoritative amending by God Himself. Sunday Sacredness’s actual founding instead points to a conveniencing attempt to save onself, which actually is indeed quite contradictory to what God’s, especially full (i.e., socio-economic) Sabbath, as shown in many episodes throughout the Bible is Spiritually all about.
            So Sunday roots are incontrovertibly all based on Satan’s eternal sly, and variously adapted/crafted ploy to try to get men to distrust God and His word/command, and rather seek to save and/or provide for themselves. No desperate effort to try to, or claim to, read/see “between the lines” can ever validate this change of the Sabbath purportation.... Most laughably, as if God would be shy to make this major switch clearly known,

It is the worst thing possible for people who call themselves Christians to take restrictions intended for the Mosaic Sabbath and try to impose them on Sunday.

            Funny that MacArthur only sees the (supposed) restrictions, -(as if God’s “ideal” is that, as actually Capitalist would have it, men “work” 7 days a week without any rest, and certainly not to worship God), for the Sabbath also calls for in the supposed (solely) Mosaic code, a holy convocation (=intentional corporate worship) on that day (Lev 23:3). So just going by his “logic” here, and since the gathering of the apostles in John 20:19, 26 was not for the purpose of celebrating a Sacred Sunday and/or the Resurrection, (but rather, as discussed above, apparently to observe the Feast of Weeks convocation requirement), it is Christians who, (inherently) ‘“restrict” themselves in their activities’ and do not go to Church on any Sunday, or any day of the Week, who are truly living up to a supposed ‘unrestricted New Covenant Sabbath’. Like it was with e.g., one-tenth tithing, Christians today typically subjectively pick and choose from the OT, even Mosaic Law, whatever conveniently endorses the pet stances and views.
            The determinative principle here in this pivotal, prophesied, OT to NT tranference, is rather how it relates to the Person and Full testimony provide by, and from, Jesus Christ Himself. And again, as He deliberately went out of His way throughout His ministry to restore the Seventh Day Sabbath’s observe to what it always, and fully, was meant to be, then, that is what, -if its inclusion in the Ten Commandment is not most logical proof enough, validates its intact continuance into the New Covenant, and, as explained later, as Heb 4 goes on to state, even to a further reaching extent than even merely the correct day, or socio-economic way, but right towards being the cornerstone of God’s enduring tangible Kingdom rest.
            God has always variously reserved a candidly determinative testing point for people who claim to believe in Him, and indeed, for bestowing the greatest blessing of His Zionistic Triumpoh and Kingdom on His professed people, He has clearly reserved the multi-faceted Sabbath as the indicative “sign” of a people who will truly and willingly trust and obey Him.

That's opposite the intention of our Lord. Don't let anybody hold you to a Sabbath day. You're not under the Mosaic Law anymore. You're not under the constraints and ceremonies and restrictions and restraints of the Mosaic Law. We have a new day. We left Judaism behind. We left the Sabbath behind. We left the leaders of Israel behind. We have a New Covenant. We have new ministers of that New Covenant and we have a new day. It's not like the Mosaic Sabbath, not at all.

All of these insidious and unBiblical endeavors by Christians to try to paint the Sabbath
rest as some sort of, moreover God-relishing, detrimental ‘burden’ are frankly all echoes of the Devil’s slanderings and deluding ploys.

Oh, you can still, I think, think of the seventh day, Saturday, in a sense as the day that reminds us that the Lord created everything in six days. I think that's a wonderful thing to do. You can still be reminded it was the Law of God that came down on people's heads with regard to the Sabbath and it's good to remember that You're a sinner. But there's nothing in the New Testament that takes Old Covenant restrictions and restraints from the Mosaic Sabbath and imposes them on the first day of the week.

            Case in point, it is just like the Devil, as he did in Eden, to mix enough truth with his cyanidal lies, as done here, and which is actually effectively claiming that ‘recognizing God as the Creator’ is really synonymous to sin/sinfulness. This just does not begin to make any cognitively rational sense and all betrays a matured deluded spirit of rebellion (=2 Thess 2:11-12) which is willing to believe any lying concoction from the one now not hiding behind a serpent, but behind the antichrist. (Dan 7:25)
            And indeed here, you have another example of that above-cited “typical conveniencing” by Sunday-keeping Christians: In the light of the now most prominent and popular onslaught of Evolution against Creation, they now, quite novelly in the light of the prior historical absence of such a claim, sheepishly run back, frankly, (and pertinently enough, like a bunch of pain or pleasure, unintelligent creatures), to upholding the Sabbath’s “convenient” contribution to the defeating of this claim. While, as related (by a (now) agnostic, American historian) here, those who, form the 1840's on, have always upheld the Seventh Day, Creation Sabbath, were always Divinely-ahead, and a match for, that growing Evolution deception of Satan. (=LS 96.1ff).
            Again, Christians today can go the smarting trial-and-error path if they so “freedly” prefer, but in the ultimate end, when all of God’s (Full) Sabbath vindicating issues and controversy will have been played out, they will most likely too late, also “novelly” realize, that they all along had the wrong and short-sighted view on these issues.

Keep in mind, please, that from Genesis 2 where God rested until giving the Mosaic Law, hundreds, centuries, centuries later through all that period of time there were no restraints on anyone's behavior on Saturday. It was just the day that you remembered God as Creator, even though men were sinful. There were no restrictions and no restraints, that didn't even come till Moses. It started with Moses and it ended with the abolishing of the Old Covenant and the establishing and the ratifying of the New Covenant.

            There also was not codified Ten Commandments prior to Exod 20, with many of these commandments not explicitly stated before then, but most theo-logically, these indicators of sin were still in full effect from the very beginning. In fact , with God actually citing His rest on the First Seventh Day, as the reason/basis for the Rest of the Sabbath Commandment, that long “set apart’ (=sanctified) day was clearly not merely ‘a day of ideological, Creation reminder’, but also/always a day of resting from one’s common/weekly work. Indeed the Sabbath had been “set apart” due to God rest at the very beginning. That would not have any meaning if that setting apart did not concretely translate to man, pointedly because the Bible is clear that the Creator God Himself needs no rest, let alone a day of rest. (Isa 40:28). So as foundationally involved in what Jesus said, in a statement which moreover pointedly alluded to the Creation days: ““the Sabbath was made for man” and not vice-versa’ (Mark 2:27). Most sequiturly all implying and involving that just after God had made/created man (on that initial sixth day), He then made the Sabbath...not for Himself, but “for man”, who, being merely one day old, probably did not know, or see, any need for it, and for him to also rest, but probably much more did the following week, after then a full week of work in tending and caring for the garden and the ‘to-be-subdued’ creation that was under his dominion/authority. (Gen 1:28; 2:15)
            And mind you that the book of Genesis is actually, as commonly understood, Moses likewise just then, and that succinctly, codifying/putting into writing around the time of the Exodus what had up to that time been centuries of merely orally passed on stories amongst God’s followers. It certainly did not mean that they had not priorly been known, or being in existence before then. In fact Moses is evidently most accurate to not state that God had prior to that endeavored to give a written copy of His Law to people unlike what He needed to do with a group of people who had influencedly lived hundreds of year as subjected slaves amongst a pagan and atheistically people.
            If one is going to order their life and theology form such, frankly ditsy loopholing and “gotcha”, (many times spuriously supposed) arguments-from-silence in the Bible, and in the process ignore what is clearly stated and/or can be logically understood, then that is, not surprising, a path which can only (at least ultimately) ending up where an outright infidel is. Which, not at all surprisingly, is just how properly interpreted Bible prophecy depicts the final Mark of the Beast camp of the AntiChrist will be composed of, i.e., including many (professed) Christians.

...And speaking of this related issue of the AntiChrist...one has to rationally ponder and wonder...what on earth would push even the most infidel of men to claim, as the many sample of quotes here [27:09-39:16ff] that: ‘they themselves, had, of its own [supposed] authority, and not by any Biblical mandate, made the change in God’s Law and Sabbath and had instead established the tradition of Sunday Sacredness.’ It would be as preposterous as, e.g., a member of the American Government claiming that they, and not Al-Quaeda, had masterminded the 9/11 attacks. It makes no sense unless there indeed is an element of transpired truth in it. And moreover that was the supposed ‘trumping’ card that Roman Catholics would present to Martin Luther and His Protestants, and to which Luther had no competent reply. It is only in recent days that Protestants have spuriously, even outrightly futilely, tried to find that ‘lacking Biblical basis and authority’ for their like adherence to Sunday. [It would not at all surprise me that, if the Vatican’s (“Secret”|Private) Archives (video) were thoroughly searched and transparently documented, more historical documents may also be found which shed some additional light on formal communications and deliberations, like the Council of Laodicea (363-364 AD) (cf. here [at 01:31:26-01:32:54]), -which is when the (Catholic/Universal) Church formally assembled to make this Sabbath-Work Rest*-abandoning change in regards to God’s Law, which would further document this development; e.g., prior correspondences which would have set the agenda for that council; and also enlightingly reveal more about the actual dualistic ‘Sabbath and Sunday’ mindset on this issue then. -(Indeed similar to, as related earlier, Samuele Bacchiocchi had (see here [39:46-41:54ff]) found in those archives a document which debunked the claims that it was the Apostolic Church which had made the switch to the Sabbath.)].[5]

* Indeed, that Canon [=Church Council Resolution] #29 only banned Christians from resting from work on Saturday, to instead do so (only) on Sunday. It was probably the fact that Christians were, since the edict of Constantin, having two days of work-rest (the precursor to our modern weekend), that, through that added ‘total work rest day’, not as much work was being accomplished. And also, even with that Resolution to transfer the Sabbath’s Rest to Sunday, as seen in the other arrived at Canons of that council, namely Canons #16, #49, #51 Christians were actually not prohibited from observing the Sabbath as a Holy/Worship Day. Indeed to the contrary. It was just that the Church did not want them to also rest from work on that day....most likely out of, as it usually “worshipfully” (cf. the Ezek 8:16-17 fourth/“last straw” “abomination” in this post) is, economic production detriment reasons. So clearly the Seventh Day Sabbath was also being kept by Christians up to, and through then, thereby showing that it was not at all changed by the Apostles and Apostolic Church.

New Covenant Sunday then is kind of like old....old Sabbath from Genesis. You remember God blessed the Sabbath day, made it a day of blessing to remember your Creator.

            Actually, there is no statement in genesis, in the founding of the Sabbath of the sort. The reason given in Gen 2:2-3 for the creation of the Sabbath all revolves around God’s deliberate resting. And it so is, as later explicitly explained in the codifying of that Sabbath Law that (Exod 20:8-11), in likewise entering into that rest, man then comes to also remember that it is God who has Created all things. (cf. Rev 14:7)

Well He's blessed the first day and made it a day to remember your Redeemer.

            Outright LIE. (=John 8:44) NO Scripture states, like Gen 2:2-3, and several others, explicitly state about the Seventh Day Sabbath that ‘God has (now instead) blessed Sunday the first day of the week.’ You can’t but know as a fact that you are lying when you make such a completely baseless claim.

When GodGlibly instituted a day of rest originally, it was a day of rest.

I guess MacArthur ‘comparatively’ means here at Creation...Where then have gone all
of his prior posturings that the Genesis Sabbath was (supposedly) ‘merely a day to (ideologically) remember God as Creator’???!! This is quite some sly “chameleon” work....

Under Moses, it was a day of anything but rest.

            How, literally, BLASPHEMOUS!!! I.e., portraying and attributing the disobedience, sinfulness and waywardness of men as if it was God’s own ideal in giving that Law. Again that is all the echoing of the Devil’s own lying attacks against the Law and Character of God. Fact is, if it had been properly kept by OT Israel, God’s Sabbath would have been for them a day of anything but work, including providing socio-economic rest for those in need of it.

But the Lord's day for us is to be a day of delight. It's to be a day of blessing. It's to be a day not fraught with external regulations. I guess, in a sense, in Christ the rest originally identified in Eden is recovered.

This fallacious line of argumentation mirrors exactly the lying claims that Early Church
fathers documentedly have used to try to dissuade Christians, and that, “for some reason”, right through the 3rd and 4th centuries to abandon keeping the Seventh Day Sabbath as holy. It seems that if the Apostles had, as MacArthur has tried to paint them, been staunchly entrenched in Sunday, and that Sunday-Only Worship, that the wide spread observance of the Sabbath would not have continued on in Christendom for over 300 years after them. They clearly had instead, and that only, set an example of observing as Holy the Seventh Day Sabbath. It was the post-Apostolic man-made tradition of Sundaykeeping which instead had to fight acceptance amongst Christian who knew that it was not commanded by God. And that unbiblical “tradition” eventually, “conveniently” prevailed with many.
            Quite telling that unlike calls by Church Father for Christian to ‘stop (so-called) Judaizing by no longer observing the Sabbath’, there are no similar calls for them to e.g. stop practicising circumcision, or offering animal sacrifices, etc, because those were issues that had been clearly settled by the Apostolic Church. The Sabbath however never began to be an issue as there was no move by them to replace it with Sunday.

What is the point of the first day? The soul is to be refreshed. The soul is to be refreshed with joy, peace, with spiritual delight. The soul is to be refreshed with divine truth. The soul is to be refreshed in worship, with teaching the preaching of the Word of God. This is a sweet gift from God.

            Glibly “interesting”, but inevitably merely “fluffy” loopingly circularly “theology”.....

We ought to be very thankful that we live in a country that still has vestiges of commitment
to Sunday.

            It actually is only Revelation’s Babylon continuing to do its one, but the chief of, its various natural work of leading and holding God’s Israel captives!!!

Fast passing away, aren't they?

            ....shouldn’t they.... since (supposedly) ‘no judgement at all is supposed to be imposed on a New Covenant “Sabbath”’...

But it was always intended to be a day of rest.

            I thought that MacArthur had just explained that ‘it wasn’t to be anything like the Sabbath’, which is to include its “rest”...or is that too just too self-servingly “convenient” to be excluded.

 It's not a day to be infused with restrictions and restraints borrowed from the Mosaic Law.

“Resting” was also a restriction and restraint since, as OT examples show, Israelites
wanted to, contrarily do work on that day, which included doing business and shopping for their livelihood (Neh 13:15-22)....You just cannot whimsically and vacuously, “conveniently” have it both ways...Such an ambivalence is most indicative a stance merely based on the wisdom of men, as indeed in this attempted Sunday Sacredness “tradition”!!!

That's...that's always the issue with covenant theology, they don't know where things end and where new things begin.

Maybe they should instead become “self-conveniencing” like MacArthur and so they will
e.g., likewise preach that God is going to save some people, including “Left Behind” Jews today by the works of the Law. Again MacArthur’s “theology” is that of mere cognitively dissonant ambivalence, as in an “anything but solely the Truth” deception.
            The example and model of Scripture is clear: When an Old Covenant Law is fulfilled in Christ, such as “the law of the commandments/teachings contained in (ceremonial) ordinances” (Eph 2:15), then it is entirely set aside, and not, as MacArthur tries to do with the Sabbath Commandment, piece-mealedly, conveniently picked from for NT continuance.

In Galatians 4:9, “Now that you have come to know God, to be known by God, how is it that you turn back again to the weak and worthless elemental things to which you desire to be enslaved all over again?”

You don't want to go back to that. “You observe days and months and seasons and years, don't do that. I feel...Paul says...for you, perhaps I've labored over you for nothing. I mean, have I wasted my time setting you free in Christ? Are you going to go back to observing days, Sabbath days, months, seasons, years?” We're not under any Sabbath law at all.

            There is actually no understanding here that Paul thought that the Sabbath Day of the Fourth Commandment itself was to be set aside. God had not given any indication of this. It was rather days which were ceremonially pattern after the Sabbath and were themselves foreshadows of what the Messiah’s Advent would bring, which were then no longer substantively/theologically applicable.

Well, the Sunday of resurrection was a very special Sunday. The following Sunday was a very special Sunday. Pentecost was a very special Sunday. Certainly after Pentecost, Sunday was very well established in the hearts of the people of God.

            Sunday-keeping in itself is ‘the observing of a day”. So for MacArthur the issue really is not about ‘observing any day’ at all. That is why he needs to, as he has attempted in these sermons, claim a straw man “sinful” purpose about the Sabbath, -a claim which has no Biblical basis nor validation.
            The simple Truth is that if God had replaced the Sabbath for Sunday, He would have explicitly made this clear in the NT, MacArthur’s, “mysterious”, grasped straws, and man-made assuming claims do not provide this clear and explicit Divine stipulating and establishment.

Did they worship only on Sunday?

            But there is no Biblical example/episode of a Sunday worship service. That is just a popular ghost claim/assumption by desperate Christians trying to find a basis for their empty, man-made, tradition.

No, no...they worshiped how often? Every day. Acts 2:46, “Day by day, continuing with one mind in the temple, breaking bread from house to house, taking their meals together with gladness and sincerity of heart, praising God, having favor with all the people.”

            This is not an indicator, or proof of a Sabbatical, formal worship Service. It rather is just these early believers extending their fellowshipping together also during the week. It would be like today members of churches getting together throughout the week to fellowship together. But that would not be them establishing a new Sabbath Day or Commandment.
                       
You know, they were experiencing that every single day and that is what Sunday should be.  It should be a day of coming together. It should be a day of devoting yourselves to the Apostles' doctrine, breaking of bread, prayer. It should be a day of taking meals together with gladness, sincerity of heart, breaking bread, praising God. It should be a happy, joyous day.

            Subjectively and ambivalently, comically telling how MacArthur takes something which he has just claims ‘was daily worship’ and now claims it should only be done on one day, on Sunday. Again just more demonstration how this Sunday tradition is based on nothing more than the wishful whims of self-serving men.

It's not a day of restraint. It's not a day when we come under the fearful threat of the Law,

Then: ‘go ahead and also, actually “work” on Sunday’...don’t take a whole day of rest as
God simply had asked for (Exod 20:8-11) (and merely beneficially enforced). Just the fact how trying to uphold Sunday just inherently lies about God and slanders His character is ample demonstration of what Spirit it is of. Telling how MacArthur’s impeaching of the Sabbath re-echoes the anti-Semitic based exhorting which led to it being discarded by Christians in the first place.

it's a day when we celebrate our redemption.

            Again, another vacuous, selfish, man-made claim, akin to the “sanctimonious” heresies of the Pharisees about God’s Sabbath. Christ’s own mandate was to make the Sabbath day a day of providing rest for others in need by ‘doing good’ towards them on that Day. Believers don’t glibly celebrate their redemption on God’s Sabbath, they extend it, in its fullest “Sabbatical” provision towards others in need of it. (Isa 58). And in all of this God is not as unwise as men to require that they keep the Sabbath every day of the week, as people have vacuously/glibly called for, for God knows that there is ample of physical work do be done on the other 6 days. His Sabbath Law makes much more realistic sense, both in terms of physical resting, and working to help others on a dedicated day, than men’s Satan-deluded, sanctimonious attempts to replace it.

And so, they met every day but it didn't take long before they landed on a special day.

Funny....Just mere circular reasoning. Clearly since the Acts 20 episode would just
easily shoot down that the Apostles observed the Sabbath everyday. And what telling ambivalent confusion if they could not figure out when and ho many days a week they should be keeping the Sabbath. And just by the fallacious 20:19, 26 claims of Sunday Keepers, it would from there be clear that Jesus would not have called for ‘the Sabbath everyday’ since he only appeared on the same, lone day of the week. (Again which was merely due to the fact that the disciple would then be naturally gathered together to observe the Feast of Week convocating requirement.)

 Turn to Acts 20...Acts 20. This is just a little bit more of the history. Luke writes that...along with Paul... “We sailed from Philippi after the days of unleavened bread, came to believers at Troas within five days, stayed there seven days.” Now look at this, verse 7, “On the first day of the week when we were gathered together to break bread...” Isn't that interesting?

            Not necessarily...I.e., up to MacArthur’s conclusion. From passages like 1 Cor 10:16-17, with the added indicators that ‘there, symbolically, was only one loaf of bread’, I could see that this first day’s evening’s,* amongst believers, involved the partaking of a Communion. (=AA 391.3) However a passage like Acts 27:35, which involved mostly non-believers, can easily show that the “breaking of bread” did not automatically mean communion (cf. 1 Cor 10:21). And also as, unless everybody there present had no problem with an extended delaying, this bread was not broken and eaten/tasted until after midnight (Acts 20:11). However nothing is being said here that it was a formal “Church” meeting. Indeed/In fact 1 Cor 11:18, 20 may be making a distinction between a formal worship service, i.e.:

            “First, on the one hand, when you are coming together in Church” (1 Cor 11:18; -which actually formally took place in their own reconstituted “synagogue” settings (Acts 15:19-21; James 2:2; cf. John 16:2; 9:22; 12:42; Acts 22:19; 26:11))

versus:

Then [i.e., on the other hand] when you are “meeting together” amongst yourself (cf. ~NKJV) for the Lord’s Supper’. (1 Cor 11:20)

            Paul subsequent point in 1 Cor 11:22 was to conjoin those two gatherings and show that they both belong to the “Church of God”, particularly in regards to those private (non-Church) meetings for the Lord’s Supper which was manifestly not being solemnly conducted. So a coming together to “break bread (sing.)” (=Luke 24:30, 35 (cf. Matt 14:19); Acts 2:42, 46; 20:7, 11) was not actually a formal “in Church” worship service”, nor was it even automatically a Communion (Act 27:35), as it is commonly assumed by many Christians today. So one would have to be subjectively and eisegetically imposing that extent/conclusion on the text/passage. (And it is interesting, that in his study Bible, MacArthur does not consider the ‘house breaking of bread’ in Acts 2:46 to be nothing more than “daily meals that the believers shared with one another”.)
            Furthermore, the Acts 20 episode merely says that Paul was “talking” with them (Acts 20:7, 9, 11; cf. 20:38; versus Acts 20:20b), and not actually “preaching” or “teaching”. A “talk/word/speech”(Acts 20:7b) which lasted a long time because Paul was going to leave, for who knew how long (cf. Acts 20:22, 25, 37-38) that morning....and just as Jesus partook of this Communion with His disciples because He was about to die, it thus would likewise be fitting for Paul to also have a “last supper” with these local believers since he himself thought that he may be killed in Jerusalem and never see them again.
            It is also determinatively telling that, and unlike common Christian assumptions today, not only had Jesus had the Passover on a Thursday Evening, (yet that did not make Thursday a New Covenant Sabbath), even upon/after His resurrection, and while appearing twice on Sunday, (for natural reasons already discussed earlier), He then did not have Communion with His disciples. Therefore the assuming claim/belief that ‘whenever believers broke break, (and even when it was actually a Communion service), must be a formal, New Covenant’s, worship service, is actually completely without Biblical foundations

* While it is commonly claimed by SDA’s that this day is being reckoned according to the Jewish ‘evening-to-evening’ way, thus this supper meeting would fall on a Saturday evening, with Luke being a Gentile, and writing to a Roman, again Theophilus (Acts 1:1 -and not, as exegetically confusedly claimed here, ‘writing genericly to “friend(s) of God”’ (see in James 2:23)), it is more likely that he was, like John in John 20:19, also using a ‘sunrise-to-sunrise’ method. And so this meeting would fall on a Sunday Evening....And yet it is noteworthy that, according to the Jewish reckoning, which Paul and other believers may themselves be going by, this meeting would actually be considered to have been a Monday morning meeting.

No law has been given to establish this.

            No kidding....

But here we are well into the ministry of the Apostle Paul, years have passed since the resurrection of Jesus Christ and it's not remarkable, it's matter of fact, “When we were gathered together to break bread on the first day of the week.” That's what they did. They're still meeting.

            ....To, here, , as the Bible fully shows: have a non-Church-worship-service, private communion (last) supper, and hear Paul’s farewell “talk” to them on the final of his 7 day stay before he left....possibly for good. There is no statement, nor Biblical support, that this was a “NT Sabbath” convocation/worship service.

And by the way, they had an evening service. I think they probably met all day.

            Well that does not make it so....

How do you know it's an evening service? Because he preached till midnight... “Preached till midnight and there were many lamps in the upper room where we were gathered together, and there was a young man named Eutychus sitting on the window,” his name means good luck. Eutychus is sitting on the window sill, not a good place if you're going to fall asleep. Sinks into a deep sleep and as Paul kept on talking...look, even the greatest of preachers put people to sleep... “The man is overcome by sleep, falls out of the third-floor and was picked up dead.”

Now that is an evening service that went on and on and on and on. This poor guy couldn't take it any longer. “Paul went down, fell upon him embracing him said, ‘Don't be troubled, for life is in him.'” Raised him from the dead. And you know what? “Went back up, broke bread, ate and kept talking until daybreak.” I like that. The man knew no ending to what he wanted to say. If somebody fell out of the window and died, you raise him and bring him back. I'm not through and you're not through listening. “And they took the boy alive and they were greatly comforted.”

So what they did...they're meeting on a Sunday and the meeting goes on and on and on because they're praising God and they're loving what they're hearing.

            Actually merely, because, As they Bible solely states: ‘Paul had many ‘final words to “talk” to them about.’

It's the Apostles' doctrine.

            No indication in the Bible that this was the subject of this talk.

This is not a drop in, one-hour deal on the way to the beach, folks.

            Why shouldn’t it be if now men are ‘supposed to be a law unto themselves as to what they can or cannot do on, actually any day they choose during the week for their “Holy Day”’...Can’t, moreover self-servingly. have it both ways!!!

This is people hungry for the things of God. This church at Troas is exemplary of the pattern of Sunday worship in the early church and ever since.

            Really, then do hold your worship services from Sunday Evening until day break on Monday morning....How vacuous!!!

Turn to 1 Corinthians chapter 16...1 Corinthians chapter 16. Paul writes to the Corinthians, he's writing about the offering, the collection. Concerning the collection for the saints.” Paul was trying to collect some money for the poor saints in Jerusalem and some of the Gentile churches had money that they could send to provide some relief for the poor saints in Jerusalem.

What happened was there was a some pilgrims in Jerusalem when Pentecost happened and many of them were converted. Well they didn't want to go back to their town, what would you go back to? There was a Jewish synagogue there and there were pagan temples, but there weren't any churches there. There's only one church in Jerusalem, so they stayed. So how would they live? There were believers in Jerusalem who when they embraced Christ were kicked out of their houses. Somebody had to take them in. So providing some relief to care for these people was challenging. Remember some people sold land and took the money and gave it to the Apostles to be distributed to care for these people, as we learn in the early chapters of Acts. So Paul has this notion of collecting money for the saints in Jerusalem. In the same way as he directed the churches in the region of Galatia to do it, he wanted the Corinthians to do it as well. So here's what he told them.

“On the first day of every week, each one of you is to put aside and save as he may prosper that no collections be made when I come.” I just want you to make it a matter of course in your Sunday worship. Offerings were taken on the first day of the week. It's not a day when we're more holy than others. It's not a day when there are some restraints on how we are to behave. It's a day when we celebrate our salvation. It's a day when we glorify God, when we focus on what Christ has done for us. That's why we come together and pray. That's why we come together and sing hymns. That's why we come together and read Scripture. That's why you hang around in the patio and talk about the things of Christ and fellowship with each other and share what you're learning. It's a day when you look at the most important reality in your life and that is your salvation.

            Nice try...I didn’t think that any person with any common sense, let alone an exegete like John MacArthur would continue to make any claim of Sunday Worship and gathering/offering collection from this 1 Cor 16:1. That “pre-text” is so easily debunked. (See in the Sunday Text video at the beginning of this post)

Well eventually this first day became so precious to the church that it got its own name.

 Not true. Just mere circular assumption.

 Turn to Revelation chapter 1. Got its own name, Revelation chapter 1, John, verse 9, is on the isle of Patmos because of the Word of God and the testimony of Jesus, because he's been exiled there by the enemies of the gospel. And he says in verse 10, “I was in the Spirit on...what?...the Lord's day...on the Lord's day.” Some people think this means the day of the Lord, the eschatological day of judgment. Hardly...hardly. John did not experience the final Day of the Lord judgment on the island of Patmos. Besides, the Day of the Lord, hemera tu kuriau (???) is a distinct phrase, the Lord's Day is te kuriakos he hemera(?????), completely different phrase used only here. This is not the eschatological Day of the Lord. This is a non-eschatological statement. This is the Lord's Day and he doesn't even give an explanation.

            It indeed is not, linguistically, syntactically nor contextually, the eschatological Day of the Lord...Nor, as shown later, is it Sunday.

Now when is John writing? Well he's writing 30-40 years after Paul. He's writing in 96 A.D. at the end of the first century and by that time this was no longer called Sunday or whatever other forms that day had been called, it was for believer's now “The Lord's Day.”

Not so...

 It doesn't even need a further explanation. There are all kinds of testimonies in the second century which would have been just a few years later since John's writing in 96, all kinds of testimonies to the fact that in the second century this was the customary way to refer to the first day of the week.

            Funny but none of the earliest (i.e., prior to later assuming filling ins) of these supposed supporting testimonies (cited here) actually themselves say: “Lord’s Day”. They merely say “Lord’s” and not also “Day”. My observing of this key omission thus far reveals that this was because they were generally referring to “whatever “religious” belong to Jesus Christ the Lord”, as was the Resurrection Event. But they stopped short of saying “Lord’s Day”. In fact the likewise Apocryphal (i.e., just like the apocryphal Gospel of Peter is cited) testimony from the Acts of John (the Apostle, no less), seems to point to the fact that ‘the Seventh Day was the Lord’s Day”. So if post Biblical canon is to be used to determine what day Rev 1:10 was referring to. The evidence is much more explicit towards the Seventh Day of the Week.
            But Biblically, the evidence is already provided by the Bible in Matt 12:8 where Jesus clearly indicates that the Day over which He is Lord, is the Seventh Day Sabbath. And in that capacity, He did act to reform it, restoring it to its Godly intent. And there moreover are indeed 20+ statements in the Bible where God says that the Seventh Day Sabbath in indeed the Lord/His Day.

            First day of the week was the Lord's Day, the day that we honor the Lord. This title for Sunday is commonly found in many, many early Christian writings, has continued through all church history even down to the present.

            It is contrarily quite telling that for 300-400 years, Christians still kept the Sabbath. All showing that there had not been a transference of the Sabbath to Sunday as popularly claimed today. That “transference” only occurred later in Church History. Which to me explains why Sunday, or really the Resurrection event itself, when dually regards as significance along with the Sabbath, was merely referred to as: “(also) belonging to the Lord”. In other words, they merely were adding Sunday to the corpus of other already religiously significant Christian things, such as also the Seventh Day Sabbath. It is only in later times that this Sunday incorporation, conveniently was given a predominant position in Christian circles.

I don't call Sunday Sunday, I call it the Lord's Day, you hear me say that a lot...the Lord's Day, the Lord's Day.

Mere mantra repetition does not make it so....

It was on the Lord's Day

...the Seventh Day Sabbath....

that John received his vision, his first vision was of Jesus the Lord of the church, right? What does he say there? “I was in the Spirit on the Lord's Day and I heard behind me a loud voice, the sound of a trumpet. He turns around and sees Christ ministering in the candlesticks, Christ ministering in His church, this is the Lord of the church serving His church and he got the vision of the Lord moving in His church on Sunday. The Lord is the one who initiated that vision and He initiated it on a Sunday...on the Lord's Day.

No actual Biblical basis for that theological extrapolating.

John had a lot of visions in the book of Revelation. None of them is identified with a day, none of them, this is the only one.

Actually John received the entire vision of Revelation in one sitting, all on one day.

This is the Lord's Day because this is Resurrection Day, this is Holy Spirit Day. It's not the Lord's morning, it's not the Lord's afternoon, it's not the Lord's evening, it's not the Lord's hour, it's the Lord's Day.

No actual Biblical basis for any of these claims.

What does that mean to you? There's a reason we don't have a Saturday night service. Would it be wrong? No...not law, not necessarily wrong. I don't want to be the guy that breaks the tradition.

            Interesting to again see this admission that the (supposed) “Christian Sabbath” is not based on God’s Ten Commandment law, but a “tradition”.

I don't want to be the guy who breaks this marvelous, glorious tribute to the risen Christ. Christ should be exalted 24/7, right? And He should be exalted Saturday morning and Saturday night and every other day.

            Still, doing this, indeed 24/7 does not set up a new Sabbath. Indeed God knew that it would not be possible for people to enjoy a Sabbath rest every day of the week (24/7 -and I guess even when one is asleep?!?) God rather is interested, and for the benefit of man (=Mark 2:27), in man devoting one whole day to Him and for His rest, if all that He actually in mind for man and his well-being, both temporally and Spiritually would ever be realized. But, just as with the also “Sabbath-of-God” sniding Capitalistic system, man instead substitutes their own unwise, man-made gods and laws instead of heeding those of the Creator God.=, and thus, just inherently fall short of God’s ideal.
            As already stated, there are some things which God has reserved for those who are truly obedient to Him, and His Sabbath Law, i.e., the heeding of it just as He said, is the perfect, candid indicator of this Faithful, Obedient Trusting in Him. Case in point, those who oppose and reject the Sabbath, implicitly express that they just don’t see why obeying it as God requires has any importance. With the most dumbfounding aspect of this rebellion being that it is actually supposed to all be for their own (resting) benefit/well-being. But No, as typical, fallen man rather trusts in what they themselves can rationalize and make sense of, which is the underlying basis for all forms of idolatrous practices.

But it just seems to me that God has placed His almighty hand on the first day of the week and said, “This is My Day...this is My day.”

            It can only, circularly, “seem” that way to MacArthur. God rather calls “His Holy Day” the Seventh Day Sabbath (Isa 58:13; Gen 2:13; Exod 20:8). When one has to, at best, based their belief on what “seems” true/right, -which inherently is a subjective determination, all the while, while rejecting plain statements and supporting actions from God/Jesus throughout the Bible on the issue, then you know that what “seemed” right to that man is actually wrong. (Pro 14:12; 16:25). Indeed, as Bible Prophecies indicate, when the (God-confirmed -LS 95-96) “Sabbath Key” is inserted and used to “cornerstonely” unlock them, the end of pursue the tradition of Sunday-Sacredness will indeed end in death. (Rev 14:9-11; 15:1-2; 16:2; 19:20; 20:4-6).

Sunday-night services are disappearing all over the place, if they exist at all much anymore, you'd be hard pressed to find one.

If Sunday was supposed to be for honoring the resurrection, then Christians should rather
be seeking to have Sunday Morning service, just a little before daybreak (Matt 28:1)....for the disciples, nor Paul, actually ever gathered on a Sunday Evening to celebrate the resurrection.

But as I said, it's not the Lord's morning, it's the Lord's Day and we want to make sure that we do not, according to Hebrews 10:25, “Forsake our assembling together but encouraging one another and all the more as you see the day approaching.” As we get closer to the return of Jesus Christ, we ought to ramp up our fellowship, not diminish it, right? We're going in the wrong direction, folks. Services are shorter, more superficial and fewer, at a time when they ought to be deeper, longer, and more frequent.

            ...As one Sundaykeeping pastor tellingly, “Freudianly”, quipped to a SDA Preacher while likewise lamenting this: “at least you have a “thus saith the Lord”...we don’t!!!

But again, we're back to what I said earlier. Superficial preaching betrays the profound realities of Scripture. The church is full of people of superficial and a superficial understanding of the high priority of worship. So as long as I have life and breath, there will be a Sunday morning set of services and they'll be a Sunday night service. And we've accommodated you on the Sunday night service by not having a second floor, so you don't need to worry about falling out and dying. The worst that could happen to you is you'd hit your head on the pew on the way down, and we can deal with that.

            It is telling that God Himself does not require a full day, or repeated, convocation(s) for His Sabbath Day...There seems to be in this an effort to placatingly overcompensate for not doing things God’s actual way. Jesus Himself would rather send His followers out for the rest of their Sabbath Day to do good.

What does the Lord expect of us on His day? All I can say is that what He would expect of us would be obvious, wouldn't it? That we would celebrate Him as Savior, that we would rejoice in His cross, that we rejoice in His resurrection , that we would pray together, fellowship together, break bread together around His table and that we would listen to the Apostles' doctrine and hear the preaching of the Word and embrace its glorious truth. I'm not talking about legalism. We're not talking about some kind of Old Covenant Sabbath laws imposed upon us. But grace certainly doesn't require less than law, does it?

            Most telling how none of the outreaching good works that Jesus object-lessonly showed should be also done on the Sabbath (=Isa 58) were cited here. Instead, as actually typically done with those who keep Saturday as Sabbath, the day is limited to self-ward activities. Both camps are, either in letter, or in Spirit, just not keeping God’s Sabbath.

I guess the question is how much do you love Christ? How strong is your desire for worship?

            True Worship and Love of God/Christ is demonstrated in much more than a religious gathering. John 14:15; James 1:27.

We're not going to drop any external rules on you.

            Relatedly, it is most comical to see how Christians think that law and rules are so ungodly. There are not only rules in, and for, everything, -well at least, anything that is efficient and productive, such as at what time these Christians meet for corporate worship, not to mention what they consider to be acceptable or not during these services, but, indeed, these Christians still obey these rules. The belief that God’s Spirit, in the New Covenant, is now to function outside of Law and Rules (contra. e.g., Jer 31:33|Heb 8:10) is a sly deception of Satan who cares nothing more than to someone keep God’s people disorderly, disorganized and thus “confused”. 
            The New Covenant is to now involved that God will not have to treat believers like little children in order to keep them faithful and “in-line”, but instead these “born for above” believers (John 3:3ff) will now, through God’s Spirit receivedly acting on their conscience, be naturally doing the righteous requirements and will of God which the Law was intending to inculcate (cf. Rom 2:12-16), as succinctly/basically summarily stated in the eternal and unchangeable Ten Commandments. Additional Laws, particularly the (ceremonial) Law of Moses, were only added because God then had to purify a people who had been steeped in paganism and were no longer innately aware of how to remain pure and Godly. Then in the New Testament, this task of ‘helping to keep believers pure’ was taken over by God’s Spirit working upon both Jews and Gentiles. (=Rom 8:1-17; Gal 5:13-18ff).

Everything about the New Covenant is better than the Old Covenant, everything, including the day...including the day. Because this day is not burdensome, it is joyous.

            For people who work and stress to provide a livelihood for six days, a day of rest can’t but rather be a ‘joyous relief’. This whole slandering of God’s actual Sabbath gift is just the continuation of the Spirit of the Pharisee who had obscured it by making it a burden. God did not do this with His Sabbath (Isa 58:13; Psa 92)

And I know you feel that way because when Clayton gets up here on Sunday morning and packs this place with all the musicians, you sing with all your might out of the joy of your heart. I never want to see people come to a service as a stop off point on the way to whatever else they need to do. That doesn't mean you can't do some work in the afternoon.

            Only fitting that man would care to see people “work” when God wants to provide rest. Again, all because people think they know better than the Creator God. This is all antithetical to actual/true faith in God.

That doesn't mean you can't enjoy some recreation, some fellowship and do some other things, it just means there's a day that God Himself has ordained for you to focus primarily on the glory of your salvation. Take every opportunity you can to fill it with worship and praise and fellowship and divine truth.

            ....it just is not Sunday....

We're not...we're not under the Old Covenant regulations.

The Ten Commandments are not limited to the Old Covenant (Jer 31-:31-34|Heb 8-8-10)

We're not under a system of condemnation.

            True. Meaning that now the violation of God’s Law no longer has to be administered through a “ministry of death” (=2 Cor 3:7) Indeed those part of the Ten Commandments themselves which mandated immediate death for its violation have been deferred by Christ’s Grace.

We don't need shadows, we have the reality, the true rest in Christ.

The Sabbath is not a ‘shadow pointing towards something’, it is rather a “sign” of what
God uniquely always does, i.e., Creation (Gen 2:2-3; Exod 20:8-11), Sanctification (Exod 31:13; Ezek 20:12, 20) and Full/Completed Redemption (Heb 4:1-11). Thus it is the comprehensively perfect emblem of Him as God. The slighting of any of these three aspects of God’s Sabbath indeed results in people not obtaining all that God has in mind for them.

And this is a day to rest...not to rest in the sense of celebrating creation but to rest in the sense of celebrating new creation...salvation.

            God’s Sabbath was never a ‘“rest” to celebrate creation’ in the Old Testament. It was rather always pointedly about physical rest, which in turn provide man ample time to spend with God, worship Him and learn from Him. (=Isa 66:23) Again God’s law here is so much more logical and wise, and no matter how slanderingly they try, man’s “logic” will never surpass it.

So, rather than ask what shouldn't I do on Sunday, ask what should I do? What is my love for Christ ask me to do? What does my heart for Him ask me to do? I'm not forbidden to work. I'm not forbidden to play. But the high ground is to say this is a day of all days in which I will find my greatest delight. And what is my greatest delight? My greatest delight is to worship and fellowship with God's people. And you can't do that if you just bring your body here without your heart. Search your heart. Is this really the Lord's day for you? I hope so.

            Again that still falls short of what the Father (Isa 58) and likewise Jesus (John 5:16-17) actually showed that He would like to see done on His Sabbath. Clearly, one way or another, i.e. either by ignoring the Sabbath all together, or by not (fully) observing it as Jesus remonstrated, Satan will work to eclipse this socio-economic blessing from man. This Sabbath issue indeed is much more than even “the correct day”.

Father, thank You again for Your Word, the refreshment of it, the beauty of it, the simplicity of it and the richness of it, the consistency of it really overwhelms us. And even though we study it week after week, year after year, it comes to us with a kind of freshness that brings joy to our hearts. This is Your day, we want to fill it with all the things that focus on You, delighting on You, loving You, loving Your people, loving Your truth, setting our hearts aside from the things of the world, setting our affections on things above to be determined, of course, not by what we don't do but what we do, to be determined by what we're not allowed to do, but what our hearts long to do.

...Matt 7:21-23...

I look over this audience tonight because this is where they want to be. Of all the places they could be, this is where they want to be cause they love You, they want to honor You, this is Your day. May all of our lives be filled with a special, special understanding of how wonderful is the weekly reminder of our eternal salvation built in to the Lord's Day. Give us a love for it because there's a love for you built into it. We'll thank You in Christ's name. Amen

            ....John 14:15-17; Acts 5:32....

Conclusion
            It is quite telling to me that Jesus had to work to restore God’s Sabbath from all of the Spiritual and socio-economic falsehoods that the post-Babylonian exiles Jews had obscuringly come to pile on top of it, and likewise today, Bible Believers are having to do the same with the prophetic Babylonian falsehoods that were pile on to it during Church History....And this time also in a furthering attempt to change the law itself (i.e. its Divinely specified day =Dan 7:25) and not merely how that law was observed. But God has actually knowingly permitted both of those developments, because pointedly in regards to the Sabbath which jointly honors both God
one’s fellow man (=Matt 22:34-40) it is only a Free-will joint love of God and love of others that will lead anyone to ever want to, thus “fully”, keep it!!!
            And that is why, as discussed here, that “Trusting/Benevolent Sabbatical Rest” Theology indeed is the focal point of the Great Controversy Between Good and Evil, Between Christ and Loyal Angels who wanted to follow God’s Ways, and Satan and his following fallen angels who wanted to do otherwise. (See DA 20.1-21.3ff)...With, succinctly stated here (see relatedly Note #1 & #2), the “Mark of the Beast” being the ‘knowingly, concretely inculcated and demonstrated, allying’, as championed by a ‘Satan-inspired Earthly power’, of people (Rev 14:9-11) against the ‘Godly Sabbatical Gospel Truth and Benevolent Socio-Economic Practicing’ (=“Sealed of God” = ‘“prophetically”, by His Holy Spirit’) Remnant People. (Rev 12:17; 19:10; 14:12)

Summation
‘Sabbath (Rest) Most Fully’
            As it was presented in the discussions above, it is quite revealing to see how God has, throughout the Bible, (naturally/duly) mixed His Sabbath in every key aspect in regard to living a full life, as listed below:

(1) Creator & Creation (Rev 10:6; 14:7 & Gen 2:1-3)
(2) Physical rest (Exod 20:8-11)
(3) Deliverance (Deut 5:15)
(4) Sanctification (Exod 31:13; Ezek 20:12)
(5) Socio-economic Justice(Isa 58)
(6) Salvation & its Psychological Rest (John 6:27, 32-33, 48-51ff & Matt 11:28-30)
(7) Zionistic Peace (Heb 4:1-13)

...and that evidently is because His provided Sabbath is chiefly representative of His Great,  Wisdom as the Creator (cf. Pro 8:22-30 discussed in here). And He reserves all of these full/fullest understandings and benefits associated with this Sabbath Rest Blessing for those who, in faith, will simply trust that He does know what is best and faithfully obey Him. (Acts 5:32). To take Satan’s sly, man-made, self-saving, (=idolatrous), typically half-truth, counterfeits (=Rev 13:15-18), namely:

(1) (Theistic) Evolution
(2) No God-Dedicated Physical rest
(3) Economic Oppression
(4) Undisciplined Licentiousness
(5) Selfishness and Covetousness
(6) Unbelief & Faithlessness
(7) Competitive Rivalries

...is to align oneself up for sure defeat. (e.g. Rev 14:9-11; 16:2ff; 18:1-24; 19:19-21)




Notes
[1] See Staley’s 2002 ministry calling experience and (non-speaking) founding prophetic vision+dream which I “testingly” (1 Thess 5:19-22), interpretingly (cf. 1 Cor 12:10) see = Heb 5:9-10, 11-6:3; Eph 2:19-22; cf. Psa 11:3-7; I.e. God’s commissioned work to/through Staley for rebuilding His actual/full Apostolic/(New) Israel “Remnant” (Rev 12:17; 14:12) Church/“Temple” amongst non-SDA Christians (Pro 4:18), (indeed even a potential Ezek 9 “wiped out”-SDAs-replacing “(Benjamin in) Judah” (Rev 7:5a))*, - though everything, pointedly in the “Law of Moses”, which is a “Shadow” must be viewed and principally practised through that Christological prism (See the Bacchiocchi studies here & here)!! Christ is indeed to fully be the “Cornerstone” (Matt 21:42) of this New Covenant “Church/Temple” (John 2:19-22) or else we are building in vain (Luke 6:46-49)!!
            Indeed it is pivotally/crucially important not to fall into a “shortsighted” (2 Cor 3:7-18) trap of returning, or settling for/into the Old Covenant’s extent, where letters of the law, types and shadows are upheld as the ultimate will of God (cf. this presentation), but to rather Biblically properly understand how these “tutoring” things speak of, through Christ, a present, New Covenant, reality. E.g., All of the Feasts (overviewingly see Staley here) represented what God would one day do through Christ (cf. 1 Cor 5:7), including the post-Cross, to now, Christologically fulfilling (Matt 5:17) Fall Feasts during now Christ’s Own High Priestly Sanctuary Ministry and antitypological, cosmic-prophetic Calender (Heb 6-10). E.g., the Trumpets, the Day of Atonement, Feast of Booths. So, towards to “fuller” and “fullest” understanding end, the many things presented in this blog, including prophecy (contra. Staley’s Biblically spurious, eisegetical, “Isaac vs. Ishmael” foundational and controlling prism/paradigm for his prophecies interpretation), and also, as presented in the post, Christ’s Sabbath (i.e.,  Isa 58|Matt 12:12; 25:31-46 -which show that it is much more/greater than even also a ‘family/personal day of relaxation/rest’), (topically referenced in the Church Triumphant Seminar), can be helpful to Jim Staley’s Hebrew Roots ministry. [See the SDA version/chapter of this movement here].

* Cf. e.g. the credible claim of an ‘approval “wink”’. As a pertinent point of Spiritual|GC|Historical reference, when God started to raise up a “Judaic”-remnant for His Israel around 1844, He actually prophetically worked with Sunday-keeping and pork-eating followers in the Early/Pioneer Adventists (cf. Acts 10:44-48). And the later, gradually led them into fuller Biblical Truth (e.g., the Seventh Day Sabbath in late 1846 (LS 95-96) and health/wellness/diet reform in 1863 see here). So the growing PFT group is, as per my prophetic view/understanding, well ahead of that replacement agenda, with only the issue of fully seeing the Spiritual fulfillment of the Covenant “letters” (cf. 2 Cor 3:13-18), pointedly in the greater cosmic, prophetic implications.
            And so, as a general rule of thumb here, indeed as they manifestly apply in regards to, (as remonstratingly pointed out here), not also doing animal sacrifice, or have an Aaronic-functioning priesthood, when/where Christ has removed the physical necessity for an OT, especially ceremonial, requirement, it no longer needs to be followed to the letter, but merely in Spirit (cf. Acts 15:7-11, 19-20, 28-29). And this is keyly why, and how, the Seventh Day Sabbath, and also Health reform is still applicable today, indeed even as tacitly recognized by Sundaykeepers., for even beyond the Spiritual, (yet also physical) “rest” provision provided in, and by obediently following, Jesus Christ (Matt 11:28-30; Heb 4:1-11), the human body still requires, as God long knew (Gen 2:1-3; Exod 20:11|Deut 5:158; Matt 12:7-8|Mar 2:27), a restoring physical and psychological weekly rest from the necessary work for providing/contributing to a livelihood; and also man is greatly benefited by such a rejuvinating day when they can undistractingly commune with their God and learn from Him. And where He see this sacrificial dedication as an evidence of trusting love and faith and responds by, as seen through EGW’s SOP, giving those who thus fully honor and keep His Law, various (fuller/fullest) revelation and visions to help make their personal and everyday life, as well as their Spiritual journeying, easier to properly manage and navigate. (2 Chr 20:20). Indeed as several biblical passages testify, the fullest prophetic guidance from God is given to those are fully within His will as revealed by His Law. (1 Tim 1:8-11; Rom 7:7)
            And in fact, Christ’s statement about the Sabbath in Matt 12:12|Mar 2:27 is the explicit proof that, contrary to popular/chief belief, the Seventh Day Sabbath itself was not ceremonial because ‘it was made for man’ and not vice-versa. Indeed compared to the ceremonial sacrificial system, it can be seen/argued that the Aaronic priesthood itself was “made”/instituted to uphold and perform its typological meaning as a reminding object-lesson to Israel, and the world, of God’s redemptive work. But not so with the Sabbath as it indeed as an enduring, even, as originally, and in a perfectly restored world (Isa 65:17ff; 66:22-24), “resting” and convocating worship need and purpose.

[2] James Staley’s opponent in that debate, Chris Rosebrough, a Lutheran, makes his own post-debate commenting and further responding here on his radio show. Most of the, and as typical isolatively viewed (i.e., not in light of all of what the Bible/NT has to say on the subject), arguments have been addressed in this post, (including the indeed debate-losing concession/recognition by Rosebrough, (which he here chooses to silently/indifferently renege on), in regards to the clear, consistent and pervasive NT understanding and teaching that ‘(Gentiles) Christians also being part of God’s Israel for the New Covenant’; (see Staley’s stunningly Biblical, and foundationally deeper (i.e. than e.g., Asscherick’s or Wohlberg’s) exposition entitled “Identity Crisis” on ‘who God’s Israel actually is’.(I basically disagree with (all of) the typological ‘any 12’, ‘any 2’, ‘any 10+2’ = “all about Israel”’ claims made at the end [01:05:48-01:09:17]. And as Staley addendumly clarifies [01:10:33ff], “Gentiles” are not only limited to people who have Northern Ethnic/Bloodline-Israelite ancestry. Also it should be added that in Matt 10:5-6 that ““house” of Israel” would refer to ‘any non-dispersion, still Mosaic practicising, Israelites’. So it must be emphasized that since the Northern Israelites did indeed seamlessly become part of the Gentiles, that term “Gentiles” then inherently/effectively has an indiscriminate application to any non-((new) covenant)-Israelite.); -hence e.g., Exod 31:12-18; Isa 56:6 valid continuing pertinence/application, which debunks his ‘tactically/strategic’ main premise), but I’ll here duly succinctly respond to the quite shallow argument that he makes near the very end [01:24:57ff] which is that anyone who claims to be keeping the Sabbath today, actually is not because:

(a) Lev 23:32 -at certain times of the year, not every place in the world (i.e., Alaska) has a “sunset/evening” every 24 hours;
(b) no work can be done on the Sabbath (Exod 31:15), including not kindling/burning a fire (Exod 35:3);
(c) no baking or boiling food (Exod 16:22-23);
(d) no (actually) ‘leaving dwelling spaces’ on Sabbath (Exod 16:29);
(e) they are not stoning to death violators of the Sabbath (Exod 31:15)

If one is going to ignore the Spirit and Principle in these laws, which, as Jesus later samply showed (e.g. Matt 5-7), is fundamental to understanding how these laws would be even ‘more extensively, =”righteously” (Matt 5:17-20) applied on the heart for God’s New Covenant with His Enduring Israel (Heb 8:7-13) then it is “naturally” (1 Cor 2:6-16; 2 Cor 3:7-18) easy for someone to make those mindlessly legalistic, moronically shallow, even Pharisaically blind claims as Rosebrough is doing. So indeed duly succinctly responded to:

(a) In days when there was no independently kept time, (e.g. with clocks and watches), the best way to keep track of the 24 hour days, which themselves from Creation were from evening to evening, was indeed by the setting sun. So, with God’s Enduring Israel now, finally, spread throughout the world, in such places as Alaska, they can use their artificial time-keepers to keep track of 24 hours days.
(b) As Jesus used in Matt 12:11, it was rightly understood, even by the Pharisees, that God allowed for non-neglect-borne, emergency “work” to be done on the Sabbath. So if it got/gets cold in an area of the world, which can cause much material damage, and even life damage, the lighting/burning a fire to keep warm is not against the purpose/intent of God’s stipulation here. There was no such emergency need in the region where OT Israel lived. Indeed the principle here is not to engage in unneeded work on the Sabbath.
            But more technically applicable here, with an intensive “Piel” stem used to literally say: ‘“make to burn” a fire’, this is indeed referring to actively doing the involved work to start, or keep burning a fire. Which, as seen in the Num 15:32-33, would require gathering wood. So if that gathering and kindling work was not completed before Sabbath, it could not then be done on the Sabbath.
(c) This technically refers to preparing/cooking meals and not heating them. (And probably most meals back then did not require to be heated for consumption, but only would require using heat for its preparation.) By today, there is actually no human “work”, (even by the producer/supplier, in non-emergency conditions), involved when one “lights a fire” in their home, either for light, heat or power (=electricity).
(d) This refers in context (Exod 16:27-29a), to not going out in the fields to gather manna on that day, and thus “rest” from that work. (Exod 16:30). The Sabbath was to be a day of Holy Convocation, so the People would have to “go out of their place”. Telling to see how Rosebrough “conveniently” applies the Pharisaical extrapolated reading here of “not go to far from their dwelling place”, when the text actually said/meant: ‘not go out at all from their place.’
(e) ...does Rosebrough’s Church stone: (3C) God cursers & blasphemers (Lev 24:15-16); (5C) (violently) insolent or dishonoring children (Exod 21:15, 17); (7C) adulterers (Lev 20:10); (8C) kidnappers (Exod 21:16);...or even (6C) murderers (Exod 21:12)????!!...hence the Laws of the Covenant which was to be enforce by a “ministry of death” (2 Cor 3:7)....not so when these same Laws are written, through the Spirit (e.g. Gal 5:13-26), upon one’s flesh (Jer 31:33|Heb 8:10) to be mercifully “tutored” by grace (Gal 3:15-29; Rom 5:18-6:15ff) in the Christ Impartingly Fulfilled and Mediated New Covenant (Heb 9:15-22).
            ...This objection is actually most emblematic of this whole issue differentiating the two sides here. By no longer, through the grace provided by Jesus Christ being ‘under the death penalty/curse of Law’ (e.g., John 8:1-11), which is actually only probationary temporary for the wicked (Rev 20:6, 13-15), this is indeed how sin would no longer be “masters” over the True Believer (Rom 6:14) because through a proper, especially Spiritual full grasping of God’s Law (Rom 7:14), it is then possible to infinite/righteously innate see, with the need of an exhaustive legal listing, what constitutes sin, and thus not fall for it, and thus not become indebted by, nor enslave to, it. (=e.g. Rom 6:12-23; 7:7-25ff).

            And this is where I am seeing/understanding James Staley’s related experience after his prophetic dream that he was from then able to better understand the message of the book of Romans {see these indeed “foundational” studies here+here+here} (cf. AA 115.3), for it indeed is through the magnified understanding of not merely the letter, but the Spiritual/Principle basis of God’s OT Law, including in the Law of Moses, that the fullest knowledge and understanding of Sin is achieved and thus the informed capability then to avoid committing it, benefiting not only the individual, but their circle, and thus contributing to the full reestablishment of God initial righteous society.

[3] Relatedly, in this 1995 presentation involving former “lifelong” SDA’s (Wallace & Carole Slattery), the host (Larry Wessels, Director of Christian Answers) tries to bring up [at 07:23-14:03] a rather novel, (supposedly) “exegetical”, argument that the “commandments” spoken of in Rev 12:17 is to be “exegetically” understood according to what John himself had (supposedly) narrowly understood it/them to be in his other writings. He then reads those supposed defining verses in 1 John 5:2-3 & 1 John 3:21-24. Well that claim/argument is easily debunked, and by actual exegesis, as succinctly summarized here:

-John does highlightingly emphasize the point in his Gospel and Epistles that Jesus’s main commandment was that Christians should love one another (e.g., John 13:34; 15:12; 1 John 4:21; 2 John 1:5), however this is just an echoing of what Jesus himself had said in Matt 22:34-40, (-and all of Jesus’ words/statements on this issue are ‘exegetically pertinent and determinative’ here), and which was a summarizing of the Ten Commandments by its overarching basis of True/Actual Love, for both God and for others. In fact John’s main, and ‘contextualizing’, issue in his epistles seems to be with believers who claimed to love God, but hated one another. So John was thus trying to remind them, as Jesus had said, that they did not really love God if they hated their own brothers and sisters in Christ. (e.g., 1 John 3:9-12; 4:20-21)

-1 John 5:3 exegetically seems to be opening with a summative statement (“for this is the love of God”) in regards to what was lastly said in 1 John 5:2 (“and do (cf. Luke 8:21) His commandments”). It is then followed by: “in order that we may [Greek subjunctive] keep His commandments”.... So though it may seem circular and redundant, John was actually sequiturly stating that ‘it is if/when/as people do what God has commanded that they then will be (actually) loving others’...and ‘those commandments which they are to do are not burdensome.’

-Wessels’ nomos (#3551 ‘law’) vs. entole (# 1785 ‘commandment/teaching’) usage distinction in John is surfacely plausible, as entole can refer to any “teaching” (e.g., Eph 2:15; Heb 7:5; 9:19; Col 4:10),  however John, and the quoted Jesus, also likewise allow for the term “Law” itself to refer to any part of the Old Testament (see John 10:34 [=Psa 82:6]; John 12:34 [=Psa 110:4 and/or Isa 9:7]; John 15:25 [=Psa 35:19; 69:4]), and not just to either the Ten Commandments, or the Laws/Writings of/about Moses. (e.g,. John 1:45; 8:17; 19:7). So either one of these terms is actually specifically defined by its context and/or adjoined specifying terms.

-And it would be quite convenient for Wessels to dichotomize the Bible here and claim that John understood entole to be only ‘New Covenant teachings’, while other Bible writers did not make that distinction, but that actually do not resolve his objection here. For (1) in Matt 22:40, Jesus words/understanding shows that a “commandment”/teaching can still involve the Ten Commandments, and then in Matt 5:19 & 15:3; 19:17-18; that it pointedly was (at least one of) the Ten Commandments; -just as did the Gentile Luke (Luke 18:20; 23:56); Paul (writing to Gentiles) in 1 Tim 1:8-11; Rom 7:7-13; 13:9; Eph 6:2).

-Then, quite interestingly, all of the above points come to help properly understand what is being specified by the use of entole in Rev 12:17, and likewise Rev 14:12. For John does not merely say “entole” (commandments/teachings), but specifyingly adds “of God”. Just going by the fact that he went on to say next something which distinctly pertained “to Jesus/Christ”, namely “the testimony of Jesus” (Rev 12:17b) and “the faith of Jesus” (Rev 14:12b), if he had meant, as Wesslers posits, ‘the (New Covenant) commandments/teachings of Jesus’ then John would not have “interruptingly” added “of God” before this, but would instead have said simply for Rev 121:17: “the commandments and testimony of Jesus” and for Rev 14:12: “the commandments and faith of Jesus”. But he did not. He instead specifyingly said: “the commandments of God”. And that is because they are indeed two specifically distinct things. And John actually does consistently use the title “God” (Greek theos) to pointedly/distinguishingly refer to God the Father. (e.g., Rev 7:10, 17; 14:4; 15:3; 19:9; 21:22, 23; 22:1, 3)
            And it is Jesus himself, as also seen from Paul, who define what the phrase “commandments of God” pointedly refers to, and that is to ‘the Ten Commandments’ (see Matt 15:3-4|Mar 7:8, 9; 1 Cor 7:19 (cf. Rom 2:25-29). Even the slightly distinct expression “commandments of the Lord” instead could have allowed for a different understanding (i.e., merely possibly the (New Covenant) teachings of the Lord Jesus Christ), (cf. 2 Pet 3:2; Luke 1:6).
            So it is all as what Jesus had said in Matt 5:19, He had not come to do away with the Law/Commandment/teachings of God, but rather to bring out their fullest meaning, leading to perfect righteousness (=right doing), (=Matt 5:20) which logically will not be nullifying the letter of the law, but rather be, as Jesus went on to show, expanding on its Spiritual nature and applications. And so, as it indeed is to be found in the New/Second Covenant (Jer 31:33|Heb 8:10), the Ten Commandment Law of God still remains in force.
[4] And, corroboratedly, in perfect and logically sequitur harmony with passages, (objectingly presented here [44:51-47:44]), which speak of the Seal of God being His Holy Spirit (Eph 1:13-14; 4:30; 2 Cor 1:21-22; cf. Titus 3:5-6; John 3:3, 6-8); God does indeed seal believers with His Holy Spirit, however it is actually only those who truly believe, and this is concretely seen in their obedient lives (=Acts 5:32; cf. 2 Pet 1:10). And so while God does (incrementally/correspondingly) give His Holy Spirit to believers who are faithful in obeying what they honestly know to be His Truths, and therefore are not acting rebelliously towards Him (cf. Isa 63:10; Eph 4:30), the “sealing” full measure of that Spirit, as especially seen in (advanced) revelations through the (genuine) Gift/Spirit of Prophecy, is indeed reserved for those who will be fully obedient to Him and His will (cf. James 2:8-12), which will, once fully granted, thus preservingly guide these believers right through the end (=Eph 4:30). And as anything which is knowingly upheld in contradiction to God’s Will and Truth indeed qualifies as an “idol”, it is right for it to have been said through the Spirit of Prophecy that: “God will not place His seal (i.e., give the full measure of His Holy Spirit) where there is an idol” (e.g., ‘unsacrificed possessions’ (16MR 34.3); ‘the world, the flesh & the Devil (TM 445.1); ‘tobacco’ (5MR 377.1)), -of which the documentedly “man- made” tradition of Sunday Sacredness instead of the Sabbath does indeed qualify as (a major) one. (LDE 224.6; 19MR 244.3; RH, March 8, 1898 par. 1-14)! Quite telling that proper and full Sabbath observance “sanctifyingly” (=Exod 31:13; Ezek 20:12) contributes to helping one overcome and discard all of these “idols”. (Case in point, it indeed was through the Spirit of Prophecy, given to the SDA Church through EGW, that God indeed gave revelations (5MR 377.1|3SM 273.1), which, contrarily, were decades well ahead of the times, which showed that tobacco was a detriment, and a deadly one at that, to one’s health and well-being (see Te 55.2-72.5; 278.2).

            -That all substantively applicably said in the related above 2 Notes on this issue, there also is the applicable technical component that, as actually stated in Eph 4:30: God (the Father) actually makes use of the Holy Spirit, i.e., as the concretely actualizing agent, “in/through whom” (Greek: en hoi)  He substantively seals people in Biblical Belief & Faith: ‘so that they then cannot be (intellectually and/or “spiritualistically”) moved by Worldly/“Babylonianistic”/Satanic spurious claims, sly falsehoods and cunning deceptions around them.’ (LDE 219.4). And in doing this sealing,the God the Holy Spirit merely transmit what God the Father and the enjoinging God Son have already stated/revealed (=John 14:25-26; [cf. John 2:22]) or (inceptively) initiated/indicated, (=John 16:12-15), such as “God’s (Full) Sabbatical Truth”!
            See more on this seal and sealing of God as eschatologically, fully spoken of in Rev 3:12 here.

[5] The following is a factual and/or inferring/surmising timeline of key historical moments in the Church’s changing of the Sabbath, as well as its later rediscovery and its present “fullest” (=EW 33.2) understanding/presentation [Cf. this brief historical overview for concrete info on certain events]:

Formation
28-31 A.D. - Jesus concretely and deliberately demonstrates what God’s Sabbath is to be “fully” all about.


Deformation
64 A.D. - Sabbath Gatherings Abandoned due to persecutions (Heb 10:25)

67-70+ A.D. - Resurrection day presented as alternative to distinguish Christians from persecuted, and also exceptionally, specially/(“reparations”-like) sur-taxed by Rome, Jews. (See the corroboratingly fleshing out and documenting details in the study by Bacchiocchi (pp. 167-173ff)).

70-150 A.D. - Resurrection Day Theology developed & advanced as (merely) “Lord’s” (i.e., ‘(validly) belonging to the Lord’.

125+ A.D. - Jewish persecutions are ending, most Christians (except e.g., in Rome) resume the (full) observance of Sabbath; some also continue to reverence Sunday.

150+ A.D. - Resolute Sunday (only) movements begin with “Sunday” now glossingly and (falsely from Rev 1:10) also referred to in writings, fully, as “Lord’s Day”.

321 A.D. - “Converted” Constantine extends Sunday Sacredness throughout all his realm as a Law in an Edict.

321+ A.D. - Endeavored Sunday Theology is heightened by also outfitting/couching it in prior “(supposedly) superceded” pagan understandings and mythology.

364 A.D. - The Catholic Church follows suit with Civil authority and in the Council of Laodicea outlaws the observance of Sabbath (at least in regards to ceasing from work (=”Judaizing”) for Christians.

364+ A.D. - Bible only Christians reject this formal establishment of Sunday as the new Christian Sabbath, (they are marginalized, even persecuted). The Sabbath, even without its ‘no work’ stipulations is increasingly demeaned and Sunday is correspondingly uplifted in its stead...

538 A.D. - Starting with the Third Council of Orleans, (France), the Catholic Church began passing a more stringent Sunday sacredness laws/edicts than what Constantine had priorly passed, by first removing the permission for farmers to do agricultural work on that day. (See here).

538+ A.D. The suppression of the Bible in the “Dark Ages” facilitate the eclipsing in the mind/knowledge of believers of the Biblicalness of the Seventh Day Sabbath...as well as the history of its gradual abandonment... (By today, this gradual, anti-Biblical transference is complete and most Christians spuriously think, or desperately want/need to think, that this change was made by the Christ|His Apostles|the Apostolic/Jerusalem Church)....

1054+ A.D. During the East-West Schism of the Church, the issue of Sabbath Observance was a major area of difference, with Roman Catholics (=Western Church) now pushing for the abandonment of also observing Saturday, and the Eastern Church aiming to maintain it, along with Sunday, as Holy Days. (See Arthur Maxwell, God Cares, Vol. 1, pp.137-141). (cf. Some historical accounts of unaltered/persisted Sabbath observance in Africa around that era here[24:45-34:48ff])
            Over time, with the influence of the Western Church being more powerful, its stance against the Sabbath gradually won out, including, derivedly, through Protestant Reformers, including its former priest Martin Luther, who opted not to return to Sola Scriptura on this issue.

Reformation
1500's+ A.D. - In Reformation Era and its “Scriptures Only” tenet, the then well/factually known history of how the Seventh Day Sabbath was discarded by the actions of men is (rightly) brought up (e.g., in the Council of Trent) as a trumping card against Protestant who claim to have completely divorced themselves from extra-Biblical traditions of the Roman Catholic Church.

Nov. 1846+ A.D. - One of the last pieces for restoring the Apostolic Church is uncovered in the return by a group of post-Millerite Adventists (later SDA’s) to the Seventh Day Sabbath.


Transformation
ca. 1890's+ A.D. Deeper, binding understandings of the Sabbath revolving around Isa 58 are made by some Christians/SDA’s (e.g., John Harvey Kellogg, Ellen White -WM 23-63ff)

1996|2000+ A.D. The fullest Theologically revealing, Gospel Fulfilling, Lawfully binding, and Prophetically pivotal and Spiritually (fully) sealing, meaning(s) of the Sabbath are gradually brought forth through this “Theological Views” blog...

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