Sabbath Change and Restoration
When was the Sabbath Made?
Gen 2:1-3 “Thus the heavens and the earth were finished, and all the host of them. And on the seventh day God ended his work which he had made; and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had made. And God blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it: because that in it he had rested from all his work which God created and made.”
Who Made it?
John 1:1-3, 14 “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.” “And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.”
Eph 3:9 “And to make all [men] see what [is] the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God, who created all things by Jesus Christ:”
Col 1:13-17 “Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated [us] into the kingdom of his dear Son: In whom we have redemption through his blood, [even] the forgiveness of sins: Who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of every creature: For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether [they be] thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him: And he is before all things, and by him all things consist.”
For Whom was the Sabbath made?
Mark 2:27 “And he said unto them, The sabbath was made for man, and not man for the sabbath:”
The Lord’s Day
How does God regard the Sabbath?
Exo 20:10-11 “But the seventh day [is] the sabbath of the LORD thy God: [in it] thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that [is] within thy gates: For [in] six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them [is], and rested the seventh day: wherefore the LORD blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it.”
My Holy Day
Isa 58:13-14 “If thou turn away thy foot from the sabbath, [from] doing thy pleasure on my holy day; and call the sabbath a delight, the holy of the LORD, honourable; and shalt honour him, not doing thine own ways, nor finding thine own pleasure, nor speaking [thine own] words: Then shalt thou delight thyself in the LORD; and I will cause thee to ride upon the high places of the earth, and feed thee with the heritage of Jacob thy father: for the mouth of the LORD hath spoken [it].”
Lord of the Sabbath
Mark 2:28 “Therefore the Son of man is Lord also of the sabbath.”
Matt 12:8 “For the Son of man is Lord even of the sabbath day.”
The Lord’s Day
Rev 1:10 “I was in the Spirit on the Lord’s day, and heard behind me a great voice, as of a trumpet,”
Jesus kept the Sabbath
Luke 4:16, 31 “And he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up: and, as his custom was, he went into the synagogue on the sabbath day, and stood up for to read.” “And came down to Capernaum, a city of Galilee, and taught them on the sabbath days.”
Matt 5:17-18 “Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil. For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled.”
In death Jesus rested on the Sabbath
Apostles kept Sabbath
Luke 23:56 “And they returned, and prepared spices and ointments; and rested the sabbath day according to the commandment.”
Acts 13:42-44 “And when the Jews were gone out of the synagogue, the Gentiles besought that these words might be preached to them the next sabbath. Now when the congregation was broken up, many of the Jews and religious proselytes followed Paul and Barnabas: who, speaking to them, persuaded them to continue in the grace of God. And the next sabbath day came almost the whole city together to hear the word of God.”
Acts 16:13 “And on the sabbath we went out of the city by a river side, where prayer was wont to be made; and we sat down, and spake unto the women which resorted [thither].”
Acts 17:2 “And Paul, as his manner was, went in unto them, and three sabbath days reasoned with them out of the scriptures,”
Acts 18:4 “And he reasoned in the synagogue every sabbath, and persuaded the Jews and the Greeks.”
How did Jesus indicate that the Sabbath should be observed in the Christian dispensation?
Matt 24:15-20 “When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand:) Then let them which be in Judaea flee into the mountains: Let him which is on the housetop not come down to take any thing out of his house: Neither let him which is in the field return back to take his clothes. And woe unto them that are with child, and to them that give suck in those days! But pray ye that your flight be not in the winter, neither on the sabbath day:”
Breach made in the Law
Change Times and Laws (1260 years mentioned 7 times to emphasise and establish the fact.)
(Dan 7:25; Dan 12:7; Rev 11:3; Rev 11:4; Rev 12:6; Rev 12:14; Rev 13:5)
Do not add to or take from the Word of God
Deut 4:2 “Ye shall not add unto the word which I command you, neither shall ye diminish [ought] from it, that ye may keep the commandments of the LORD your God which I command you.”
Prov 30:6 “Add thou not unto his words, lest he reprove thee, and thou be found a liar.”
Rev 22:18-19 “For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book: And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and [from] the things which are written in this book.”
Opposing power (falling away)
2 Thes 2:3-4 “Let no man deceive you by any means: for [that day shall not come], except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition; Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God.”
Dan 8:12 “And an host was given [him] against the daily [sacrifice] by reason of transgression, and it cast down the truth to the ground; and it practised, and prospered.”
Restoration of the Sabbath (Repairing the Breach)
The repairer of the breach
Isa 58:12-14 “And [they that shall be] of thee shall build the old waste places: thou shalt raise up the foundations of many generations; and thou shalt be called, The repairer of the breach, The restorer of paths to dwell in. If thou turn away thy foot from the sabbath, [from] doing thy pleasure on my holy day; and call the sabbath a delight, the holy of the LORD, honourable; and shalt honour him, not doing thine own ways, nor finding thine own pleasure, nor speaking [thine own] words: Then shalt thou delight thyself in the LORD; and I will cause thee to ride upon the high places of the earth, and feed thee with the heritage of Jacob thy father: for the mouth of the LORD hath spoken [it].”
GC 452 “The Lord commands by the same prophet: “Bind up the testimony, seal the law among My disciples.” Isaiah 8:16. The seal of God’s law is found in the fourth commandment. This only, of all the ten, brings to view both the name and the title of the Lawgiver. It declares Him to be the Creator of the heavens and the earth, and thus shows His claim to reverence and worship above all others. Aside from this precept, there is nothing in the Decalogue to show by whose authority the law is given. When the Sabbath was changed by the papal power, the seal was taken from the law. The disciples of Jesus are called upon to restore it by exalting the Sabbath of the fourth commandment to its rightful position as the Creator’s memorial and the sign of His authority.”
Elias truly shall first come, and restore all things
Matt 17:11 “And Jesus answered and said unto them, Elias truly shall first come, and restore all things.”
Until the times of Restitution of All Things
Acts 3:20-21 “And he shall send Jesus Christ, which before was preached unto you: Whom the heaven must receive until the times of restitution of all things, which God hath spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began.”
Heb 8:10 “For this [is] the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, saith the Lord; I will put my laws into their mind, and write them in their hearts: and I will be to them a God, and they shall be to me a people:”
People who Keep the Commandments
Rev 14:12 “Here is the patience of the saints: here [are] they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus.”
Blessed are they that Do His Commandments
Rev 22:14 “Blessed [are] they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city.”
Sabbath on the New Earth
Isa 66:22-23 “For as the new heavens and the new earth, which I will make, shall remain before me, saith the LORD, so shall your seed and your name remain. And it shall come to pass, [that] from one new moon to another, and from one sabbath to another, shall all flesh come to worship before me, saith the LORD.”
No one need to keep Friday to honour our Lord’s crucivixion as we have the ordinance of baptism.
Col 2:12 “Buried with him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen with [him] through the faith of the operation of God, who hath raised him from the dead.”
No one need to keep Sunday to honour Christ’s resurrection, as we have the ordinance of the Lord’s Supper:
1 Cor 11:26 “For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew the Lord’s death till he come.”
Matt 15:3-9 “But he answered and said unto them, Why do ye also transgress the commandment of God by your tradition? For God commanded, saying, Honour thy father and mother: and, He that curseth father or mother, let him die the death. But ye say, Whosoever shall say to [his] father or [his] mother, [It is] a gift, by whatsoever thou mightest be profited by me; And honour not his father or his mother, [he shall be free]. Thus have ye made the commandment of God of none effect by your tradition. [Ye] hypocrites, well did Esaias prophesy of you, saying, This people draweth nigh unto me with their mouth, and honoureth me with [their] lips; but their heart is far from me. But in vain they do worship me, teaching [for] doctrines the commandments of men.”
GC 605 “The Sabbath will be the great test of loyalty, for it is the point of truth especially controverted. When the final test shall be brought to bear upon men, then the line of distinction will be drawn between those who serve God and those who serve Him not. While the observance of the false sabbath in compliance with the law of the state, contrary to the fourth commandment, will be an avowal of allegiance to a power that is in opposition to God, the keeping of the true Sabbath, in obedience to God’s law, is an evidence of loyalty to the Creator.”
GC 607 “Sunday The church appeals to the strong arm of civil power, and, in this work, papists and Protestants unite. As the movement for Sunday enforcement becomes more bold and decided, the law will be invoked against commandment keepers. They will be threatened with fines and imprisonment, and some will be offered positions of influence, and other rewards and advantages, as inducements to renounce their faith. But their steadfast answer is: “Show us from the word of God our error”–the same plea that was made by Luther under similar circumstances. Those who are arraigned before the courts make a strong vindication of the truth, and some who hear them are led to take their stand to keep all the commandments of God. Thus light will be brought before thousands who otherwise would know nothing of these truths.”…. (GC615, 616)
GC 605-606 … United States …
Rev 12:6 “And the woman fled into the wilderness, where she hath a place prepared of God, that they should feed her there a thousand two hundred [and] threescore days.”
Luke 21:16-17 “And ye shall be betrayed both by parents, and brethren, and kinsfolks, and friends; and [some] of you shall they cause to be put to death. And ye shall be hated of all [men] for my name’s sake.”
DR 56 “
The Bible Sabbath Recovered
1. What grievous system of error did the prophet Daniel declare would arise in the Christian church?
“And he shall speak great words against the Most High, and shall wear out the saints of the Most High, and he shall think to change the times and the law; and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and half a time.” Dan 7:25, R.V.
As is conclusively shown in the study entitled “Antichrist Unmasked,” page 456, this prophecy was fulfilled in the rise of the Roman Catholic Church.
2. How has the Roman Catholic Church marred the law of God?
By enforcing the observance of Sunday, the first day of the week, and by the prohibition of Sabbath-keeping.
3. Although Rome succeeded in enforcing Sunday observance throughout the lands under her jurisdiction, where was a knowledge of the true Sabbath kept alive?
In remote corners of Europe, Asia, and Africa.
In Britain the Sabbath was observed by the Celtic church until well on into the twelfth century. (See previous study.) In Abyssinia it was observed from apostolic times down to the seventeenth century. The Nestorians, Maronites, Jacobites, and Armenians, as well as other Asiatic Christians, continued to observe the seventh-day Sabbath for varying periods until as late as the seventeenth century.
4. What reasons have we for believing that in spite of persecution the observance of the true Sabbath continued even in continental Europe throughout the Dark Ages?
a. The frequent utterances of the church councils against the observance of the Sabbath.
b. Letters drawing attention to and condemning Sabbath-keeping.
c. Inquisition records naming Sabbath-keeping sects like the Pasaginians, the Waldenses, the Insabbatati, etc.
To mention only one of many groups of Sabbath-keeping Christians, the Waldenses “kept the Sabbath day (now known as Saturday), observed the ordinance of baptism according to the primitive church, and instructed their children in the articles of the Christian faith and the commandments of God.”—Jones in “Church History,” Vol. II, chap. 5, sec. 4.
5. In their zeal for the elimination of all traces of papal corruption what did the Reformers discover concerning Sunday observance?
That it was based solely upon human tradition.
Says the Augsburg Confession: “They [the Catholics] allege the Sabbath changed into Sunday, the Lord’s day, contrary to the decalogue, as it appears; neither is there any example more boasted of than the changing of the Sabbath day. Great, say they, is the power and authority of the church, since it dispensed with one of the Ten Commandments.”—Article 28.
6. In spite of this declaration, however, what fallacious position does the Augsburg Confession take up with reference to the true Sabbath?
Denies the necessity of observing any Sabbath.
“The Scripture allows that we are not bound to keep the Sabbath; for it teaches that the ceremonies of the law of Moses are not necessary after the revelation of the gospel.”—Article 28.
7. While the great Reformation churches never returned to the observance of the seventh-day Sabbath, what evidence is there that some of the smaller groups did so?
Many references to Christian Sabbath-keepers.
Here is a typical one: “The Sabbatarians (they will pardon if I term them so on account of their opinion) teach that the outward Sabbath, i.e., Saturday, still must be observed, for such be God’s Word, will, and command. Exodus 20 and 31. Here they say, we read in God’s Word plainly that He wants to have the Sabbath kept as long as the world stands. He who acts contrary to the divine commandments will not remain unpunished.”—Letter written to Lord Leonhard of Lichtenstein of Nikolsburg in 1599, and cited in “The Christian Sabbath,” page 10.
8. When do Sabbath-keepers reappear in Britain after their extinction in the eleventh and twelfth centuries?
In the sixteenth century.
“In the reign of Elizabeth, it occurred to many conscientious and independent thinkers (as it had previously done to some Protestants in Bohemia) that the fourth commandment required of them the observance, not of the first, but of the specified seventh day of the week, and a strict bodily rest, as a service then due to God.”—Chambers’ Cyclopedia, Article “Sabbath,” Vol. VIII, page 402.
9. Who was the first English Sabbath-keeper to suffer for his belief after the Reformation?
“Following the Sabbatarian principles of the Puritans to their legitimate consequences, ‘endeavoured to bring back again the Jewish Sabbath, as that which is expressly mentioned in the fourth commandment, and abrogate the Lord’s day altogether, as having no foundation in it, nor warrant by it. … For which his Jewish doctrines having received his censure in the Star Chamber, anno 1618, he was set on the pillory at Westminster, and thence whipped to the Fleet, and there put in prison, and about three years after wrote a recantation of all his former heresies and schismatical opinions.”—Bishop Cox in “Sabbath Literature,” I, 152, 15.
10. Only a few years later, however, what notable personage became a Sabbath-keeper as indicated by his epitaph in the churchyard at Woodham Mortimer in Essex?
Peter Chamberlen, Royal Physician.
“The said Peter Chamberlen took ye degree of Doctor in Physick in fever at Universities both at home and abroad and lived such above three score years being Physician in Ordinary to three Kings and Queens of England, viz., King James and Queen Anne, King Charles ye first and Queen Mary; King Charles ye second and Queen Katherine; and also to some foreign princes; having travelled most parts of Europe, and speaking most of ye languages. As for his Religion was a Christian keeping ye Commandments of God and faith of Jesus, being baptized about ye year 1648, and keeping ye seventh day for ye Sabbath above 32 years.”
11. When was a knowledge of the true Sabbath implanted among the Christian colonies of America?
About the middle of the seventeenth century.
“Stephen Mumford came over from London in 1664, and brought the opinion with him that the whole of the Ten Commandments, as they were delivered from Mount Sinai, were moral and immutable; and that it was the antichristian power which thought to change times and laws, that changed the Sabbath from the seventh to the first day of the week.” Isaac Backus in “Church History of New England from 1783 to 1796,” Vol. II, sec. 10.
12. How concerned are some discerning Protestants today about the Sabbath question?
They desire a return to the true Sabbath.
“We keep the first day of the week as the Sabbath, in place of keeping the last day of the week, because we are wrong and have followed the papist church from early ages. No quibbling or explaining can make the Sabbath day of rest any other than the seventh. And the first can never be the seventh. The time will come, and soon too, when the world will come back to God’s Sabbath day.”—Prof. E. Odlum, M.A., B.Sc., of the University of British Columbia.
13. Has the preservation of a knowledge of the true Sabbath and the revival of its observance in post-Reformation times any significance in the purposes of God?
Yes, for God’s last message to the world calls for a return to the worship of the Creator. “And I saw another angel fly in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach unto them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people, saying with a loud voice, Fear God, and give glory to Him; for the hour of His judgment is come: and worship Him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters.” Rev 14:6, 7.
14. Which commandment draws special attention to the worship of the Creator?
The fourth. “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy … for in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day, and hallowed it.” Ex 20:8-11.
15. How is the last-day Sabbath-keeping remnant who respond to this call described?
“Here is the patience of the saints: here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus.” Rev 14:12.
16. Has the observance of the true Sabbath spread throughout the earth in confirmation of the prophecy?
Indeed it has, for the scattered groups of Sabbath-keeping Christians of the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries had grown by the beginning of the twentieth century to more than 100,000, and since then at a vastly accelerated rate, until today there are more than half a million Sabbath-keepers throughout the world remembering the Creator on the day of His appointing, and receiving the spiritual blessings which God promised in its hallowed hours.
17. To what end will the false religious systems which have marred God’s law come?
“And there followed another angel, saying, Babylon is fallen, is fallen, that great city, because she made all nations drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication. And the third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand, the same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of His indignation.” Rev 14:8-10.
18. On the other hand, what will be the portion of those who respond to God’s last call to faith and obedience?
“If thou turn away thy foot from the Sabbath, from doing thy pleasure on My holy day; and call the Sabbath a delight, the holy of the Lord, honourable; and shalt honour Him, not doing thine own ways, nor finding thine own pleasure, nor speaking thine own words: Then shalt thou delight thyself in the Lord; and I will cause thee to ride upon the high places of the earth, and feed thee with the heritage of Jacob thy father: for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it.” Isa 58:13, 14.