4th Commandment

4th Commandment

Joined: November 14th, 2011, 6:21 pm

November 14th, 2011, 6:31 pm #1

I am not looking to start any problems but I would like to find out why Bible Students do not keep the 4th commandment. Jesus many times spoke of keeping the commandments.

I Pastor a small independent church in Pascog RI. I used to attend secret meetings of a small group of Bible Students for several years in Viet Nam when I worked for the government.

Because of that experience I have come to know that BS are sincere and probably the most educated students of the Bible.

Thanks for any responses.
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David
David

November 14th, 2011, 8:33 pm #2

Judging by your login name, I think you mean the 7th day Sabbath. My own views are not representative of all Bible Students, or any other group - merely my own views. Still want to hear my view?

My view, in summary, is this - we ought to keep a kinder, gentler Sabbath. Doing so will bring a blessing on us - though failing to do so will not bring a curse on us (merely a with-holding of the blessing).

EVIDENCE :

When Jesus was asked by a man what he could do to gain eternal life, his answer was to keep the commandments. When pressed to identify the commandments, Jesus gave quite a few of the 10 commandments in response, plus to love your neighbour as yourself. By saying this Jesus stamped the 10 commandments as having eternal value. He enshrined them as moral principles.

When Jesus ran into trouble with the "clergy" of his time regarding his (and also his disciples) "liberal" understanding of keeping the Sabbath, he said that "The Sabbath was made for man, and not man for the Sabbath". This says that the Sabbath was designed to help us, not get us killed. Notice carefully, he did not say "The Sabbath was made for Jews, not Jews for the Sabbath". No. The Sabbath was meant from the beginning for everyone. That is why God, at creation, blessed the Sabbath day. Why did he say that, thousands of years before Moses - if they were only to be kept by the Israelites?

The 10 commandments were given by God himself to the Israelites. They were also written by the finger of God - the rest of the law was not. There were no penalties attached to the 10 commandments at the original time they were given. That is because the remainder of the law (called the statutes) given to Moses was designed as the outworking of the commandment/principles for his "day" and circumstances. The ancient Israelites were a "stiff-necked" and sometimes violent people. They needed the principles of the law interpreted for them in a "tough" way - otherwise no-one would have respected them. Notice this - the Sabbath was included with the other 9 principles. It is a principle, not a ritual. Only the rituals are gone. The Sabbath reminded the Israelites of their creator. It reminds us that there will be a re-creation. Because the 10 commandments are principles, not rituals, they last forever. The Sabbath remains, though not in its form under Moses.

But what about what Paul said? Paul said a number of things about Sabbath(s). Mainly he de-emphasized the importance of "Sabbaths". It is a little unclear, though, which Sabbaths Paul was referring to. At times it seems Paul thought that this "Sabbath keeping" was a small matter - up to individual conscience. At other times, it seems he was angry at those who chose to keep these "Sabbaths".

After taking the above, and other information into account, I believe that the Sabbath, as one of the 10 commandments remains for us to keep - along with the other principles behind the law. But we must remember that it is a blessing for those keeping it (in its original intent), but no curse was intended from the beginning. Now, with Christ and his restoration work, the Sabbath remains as at the beginning of creation.

David
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Joined: January 2nd, 2007, 8:10 pm

November 15th, 2011, 2:04 am #3

Vol VI The New Creation
Study VIII
Pgs 379 -

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David
David

November 15th, 2011, 3:34 am #4

Thanks Larry. It is always good to read the well-considered thoughts of others, the more especially of those like Mr Russell who had a good understanding of the Bible. I have read that study through fairly quickly, and will read it again more slowly and carefully. I will have more to say, after I have finished reading it again.

David
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Joined: November 14th, 2011, 6:21 pm

November 15th, 2011, 1:34 pm #5

Judging by your login name, I think you mean the 7th day Sabbath. My own views are not representative of all Bible Students, or any other group - merely my own views. Still want to hear my view?

My view, in summary, is this - we ought to keep a kinder, gentler Sabbath. Doing so will bring a blessing on us - though failing to do so will not bring a curse on us (merely a with-holding of the blessing).

EVIDENCE :

When Jesus was asked by a man what he could do to gain eternal life, his answer was to keep the commandments. When pressed to identify the commandments, Jesus gave quite a few of the 10 commandments in response, plus to love your neighbour as yourself. By saying this Jesus stamped the 10 commandments as having eternal value. He enshrined them as moral principles.

When Jesus ran into trouble with the "clergy" of his time regarding his (and also his disciples) "liberal" understanding of keeping the Sabbath, he said that "The Sabbath was made for man, and not man for the Sabbath". This says that the Sabbath was designed to help us, not get us killed. Notice carefully, he did not say "The Sabbath was made for Jews, not Jews for the Sabbath". No. The Sabbath was meant from the beginning for everyone. That is why God, at creation, blessed the Sabbath day. Why did he say that, thousands of years before Moses - if they were only to be kept by the Israelites?

The 10 commandments were given by God himself to the Israelites. They were also written by the finger of God - the rest of the law was not. There were no penalties attached to the 10 commandments at the original time they were given. That is because the remainder of the law (called the statutes) given to Moses was designed as the outworking of the commandment/principles for his "day" and circumstances. The ancient Israelites were a "stiff-necked" and sometimes violent people. They needed the principles of the law interpreted for them in a "tough" way - otherwise no-one would have respected them. Notice this - the Sabbath was included with the other 9 principles. It is a principle, not a ritual. Only the rituals are gone. The Sabbath reminded the Israelites of their creator. It reminds us that there will be a re-creation. Because the 10 commandments are principles, not rituals, they last forever. The Sabbath remains, though not in its form under Moses.

But what about what Paul said? Paul said a number of things about Sabbath(s). Mainly he de-emphasized the importance of "Sabbaths". It is a little unclear, though, which Sabbaths Paul was referring to. At times it seems Paul thought that this "Sabbath keeping" was a small matter - up to individual conscience. At other times, it seems he was angry at those who chose to keep these "Sabbaths".

After taking the above, and other information into account, I believe that the Sabbath, as one of the 10 commandments remains for us to keep - along with the other principles behind the law. But we must remember that it is a blessing for those keeping it (in its original intent), but no curse was intended from the beginning. Now, with Christ and his restoration work, the Sabbath remains as at the beginning of creation.

David
Thanks David

Christ unmistakably taught that the Sabbath was made for man. Mark 2:27. It does not say the Sabbath was made for Jews. Some say since it was made for man we can choose not to keep it. The fact is that all the Commandments were made for man. So does this mean we can choose to ignore all of them? Of course not! Man was made on the sixth day and the only reason that we have a seventh day is because God added it for a Sabbath rest for man. It was made for man at creation so what has changed? Nothing! The Pharisees thought the Sabbath was made just for them so Jesus was correcting them and said the Sabbath was made to be a blessing for ALL man and not a day of legalistic rules that they had turned it into. Picking corn on the Sabbath for a meal was a necessity and not unlawful.

Here is ten reasons why I believe the Sabbath is not Jewish




1) Adam and Eve were not Jewish. "God blessed the seventh day and sanctified it" (Genesis 2:3) before sin entered. "Sanctified" means "to be set apart for holy use." The only ones in the Garden of Eden for whom the Sabbath was "set apart" were Adam and Eve, who weren't Jewish.



2) "The Sabbath was made for man." Mark 2:27. Jesus said this. It was "made" in the Garden of Eden before it was "written" down on Mount Sinai. The Sabbath was "made" for "man," not just Jews.



3) The other nine commandments are not "just for Jews." God wrote "Ten Commandments" on stone, not just nine (See Deut. 4:12, 13; Ex. 20). Does "Do not commit adultery," "Do not murder," "Do not steal," and "Do not bear false witness" apply only to Jews?



4) "The seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord thy God." Exodus 20:10. God calls the Sabbath, "my holy day." Isaiah 58:13. The Bible never calls it "the Sabbath of the Jews." It isn't their Sabbath, but God's.



5) The Sabbath commandment is for the "stranger" too. The fourth commandment itself says the "stranger" is to rest on the Sabbath. Exodus 20:10. "Strangers" are non-Jews, or Gentiles. Thus the Sabbath applies to them too. Read also Isaiah 56:6.



6) Isaiah said Gentiles should keep the Sabbath. "Also the sons of the stranger ... every one that keeps the Sabbath ... for mine house shall be called an house of prayer for all people." Isaiah 56:6, 7. Thus the Sabbath is for Gentiles and "all people," not just for Jews.



7) "All" mankind will keep the Sabbath in the New Earth. In "the new earth ... from one Sabbath to another, shall all flesh come to worship before me, says the Lord." Isaiah 66:22, 23. Here God says that "all flesh" we will be keeping the Sabbath in "the new earth." If this is the case - and it is - shouldn't we start now?



8) Gentiles kept the Sabbath in the Book of Acts. "The Gentiles besought that these words might be preached to them the next Sabbath ... Paul and Barnabas ... persuaded them to continue in the grace of God."' Acts 13:42, 43. Here saved-by-grace Gentiles kept the Sabbath (see also verse 44).



9) "The law" [of Ten Commandments] is for "all the world," not just for Jews. Paul wrote these words. Read Romans 2:17-23; 3:19, 23.



10) Luke was a Gentile who kept the Sabbath. Luke was the only Gentile who wrote any New Testament books (he wrote The Gospel According to St. Luke and The Acts of the Apostles). Luke traveled with Paul and wrote, "On the Sabbath we went out of the city by a river side." Acts 16:13. It was the seventh-day Sabbath, the memorial of the creation (see Ex. 20:11). Both Luke and Paul knew it.
Last edited by seventhdayadventist on November 15th, 2011, 1:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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jonalfred
jonalfred

November 15th, 2011, 1:45 pm #6

with Bro Yates. The Sabbath was part of a type that points to the greater sabbath... the seventh day or seventh millennium from the fall of Adam wherein the human race will be able to rest from their labors in sin and death and to be raised [resurrected] up to perfection and a final trial. 2 Pet 3: 7-8; Rev 20: 4

God bless
bro jon
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Joined: November 14th, 2011, 6:21 pm

November 15th, 2011, 1:53 pm #7

Vol VI The New Creation
Study VIII
Pgs 379 -
Where can I get a copy of your suggested reading?
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David
David

November 15th, 2011, 2:32 pm #8

Thanks David

Christ unmistakably taught that the Sabbath was made for man. Mark 2:27. It does not say the Sabbath was made for Jews. Some say since it was made for man we can choose not to keep it. The fact is that all the Commandments were made for man. So does this mean we can choose to ignore all of them? Of course not! Man was made on the sixth day and the only reason that we have a seventh day is because God added it for a Sabbath rest for man. It was made for man at creation so what has changed? Nothing! The Pharisees thought the Sabbath was made just for them so Jesus was correcting them and said the Sabbath was made to be a blessing for ALL man and not a day of legalistic rules that they had turned it into. Picking corn on the Sabbath for a meal was a necessity and not unlawful.

Here is ten reasons why I believe the Sabbath is not Jewish




1) Adam and Eve were not Jewish. "God blessed the seventh day and sanctified it" (Genesis 2:3) before sin entered. "Sanctified" means "to be set apart for holy use." The only ones in the Garden of Eden for whom the Sabbath was "set apart" were Adam and Eve, who weren't Jewish.



2) "The Sabbath was made for man." Mark 2:27. Jesus said this. It was "made" in the Garden of Eden before it was "written" down on Mount Sinai. The Sabbath was "made" for "man," not just Jews.



3) The other nine commandments are not "just for Jews." God wrote "Ten Commandments" on stone, not just nine (See Deut. 4:12, 13; Ex. 20). Does "Do not commit adultery," "Do not murder," "Do not steal," and "Do not bear false witness" apply only to Jews?



4) "The seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord thy God." Exodus 20:10. God calls the Sabbath, "my holy day." Isaiah 58:13. The Bible never calls it "the Sabbath of the Jews." It isn't their Sabbath, but God's.



5) The Sabbath commandment is for the "stranger" too. The fourth commandment itself says the "stranger" is to rest on the Sabbath. Exodus 20:10. "Strangers" are non-Jews, or Gentiles. Thus the Sabbath applies to them too. Read also Isaiah 56:6.



6) Isaiah said Gentiles should keep the Sabbath. "Also the sons of the stranger ... every one that keeps the Sabbath ... for mine house shall be called an house of prayer for all people." Isaiah 56:6, 7. Thus the Sabbath is for Gentiles and "all people," not just for Jews.



7) "All" mankind will keep the Sabbath in the New Earth. In "the new earth ... from one Sabbath to another, shall all flesh come to worship before me, says the Lord." Isaiah 66:22, 23. Here God says that "all flesh" we will be keeping the Sabbath in "the new earth." If this is the case - and it is - shouldn't we start now?



8) Gentiles kept the Sabbath in the Book of Acts. "The Gentiles besought that these words might be preached to them the next Sabbath ... Paul and Barnabas ... persuaded them to continue in the grace of God."' Acts 13:42, 43. Here saved-by-grace Gentiles kept the Sabbath (see also verse 44).



9) "The law" [of Ten Commandments] is for "all the world," not just for Jews. Paul wrote these words. Read Romans 2:17-23; 3:19, 23.



10) Luke was a Gentile who kept the Sabbath. Luke was the only Gentile who wrote any New Testament books (he wrote The Gospel According to St. Luke and The Acts of the Apostles). Luke traveled with Paul and wrote, "On the Sabbath we went out of the city by a river side." Acts 16:13. It was the seventh-day Sabbath, the memorial of the creation (see Ex. 20:11). Both Luke and Paul knew it.
My thoughts on this matter have been the same for about the last 5 years, more or less. Here are the relevant indicators to me about the 10 commandments -

(1) Written by God's finger
(2) Spoken by God's voice to all the Israelites
(3) The stone tablets were put inside the ark of the covenant
(4) No specific penalties when the 10 commandments were announced
(5) Jesus said that keeping them would lead to eternal life
(6) These are moral principles, not rituals

The 10 commandments are called by James a mirror showing us what we are truly like. So, what do we do when we "see" a flaw in our character through that mirror - throw out the mirror? Not!

The 10 commandments do not have the same status as the rest of the law of Moses. Jesus knew that. The 10 commandments together with love of God, and love for neighbour ARE the heart of God. Notice this one very important fact though - The 10 commandments are separate. The statutes are not (to us) valid rules to keep the Sabbath in a certain way, as they were spelled out in the 5 books of Moses to the Israelites. No, the original intent of God frequently is different from what the Israelites received as rules. Jesus gave an example of this when he said that Moses allowed divorce, as a concession to their hard hearts. But Christ made plain that this was not the way God intended from the beginning. The same applies to the Sabbath.

I am reading the thoughts of C.T. Russell on the matter. I don't mind challenges to my beliefs. If I think I am wrong, I will change my opinion and behaviour.

David
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David
David

November 15th, 2011, 3:11 pm #9

I have finished reading this SITS document a second time.

I still believe that the Sabbath is to be kept as one of God's principles. The 10 commandments are not rituals, they are moral principles. Governing laws can change to meet circumstances and culture (if God says so). But principles do not change. Remember, Christ stated how a man could obtain etrnal life - keep the commandments - which ones? The 10 - plus the 2 greatest.

David
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WildernessVoice
WildernessVoice

November 15th, 2011, 4:59 pm #10

I am not looking to start any problems but I would like to find out why Bible Students do not keep the 4th commandment. Jesus many times spoke of keeping the commandments.

I Pastor a small independent church in Pascog RI. I used to attend secret meetings of a small group of Bible Students for several years in Viet Nam when I worked for the government.

Because of that experience I have come to know that BS are sincere and probably the most educated students of the Bible.

Thanks for any responses.
The Law regarding the keeping of the Sabbath Day was given to the Nation of Israel as a part of the Law Covenant.

The Law Covenant does not apply to Christians, therefore there is no requirement for us to "keep" the Sabbath as if we were under that covenant. Even the Jews had difficulty understanding the difference between keeping the literal Sabbath, and keeping the Sabbath daily in our hearts.

Of course, this feature of the Law does have an antitypical or symbolic application to Christians, as Jon alluded to.

WV
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