When God Said Remember - Part 2

Scripture: Acts 13:14, Acts 17:2, Exodus 20:10
The Bible teaches that Jesus kept the Sabbath day on Saturday. But what about Christ's disciples? What does the New Testament teach about Sabbath keeping? This broadcast looks primarily at the book of Acts and Sabbath keeping. Is it only for Jews?
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Yesterday we entered into a study of God's law and in particular the fourth commandment of that Decalogue. We learned that Jesus is our example in all things and He kept all the commandments of God. His life sets the pattern for ours. And the Bible says that He not only kept all of the commandments, but especially it was His habit to go into the synagogue and worship on the Sabbath day. Now we're going to continue today by studying Bible reasons for keeping that same day that Jesus observed and the one that was written by God in the Ten Commandments.

The next reason for keeping the Sabbath is simply this, friends; that the disciples of Jesus kept it as He did. There have been many arguments about this, but I'd like to read you some passages from the book of Acts where we find the record of the disciples' work. I want you to note what it says here about Sabbath keeping. This is Acts 13:14. "But when they departed from Perga, they came to Antioch in Pisidia, and went into the synagogue on the sabbath day, and sat down." Here they were in Antioch keeping the Sabbath. Acts 16:13 is another one. "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." Here they were in Philippi, a city in Macedonia, and they were keeping the Sabbath out by the riverside. Now many people feel that the only reason the disciples worshiped on the Sabbath was to preach to the Jews and that they never worshiped on that day otherwise. But I call you to witness, that here they were in Greece now; there was no Jewish synagogue there as far as we know, and they went out to the riverside. These Christian people met, worshiped, and prayed there on the Sabbath. That's Acts 16:13. Why didn't they meet on Sunday with those folk in the Gentile country of Macedonia? I'll tell you why, friends. Because those disciples kept the Sabbath.

Acts 17:2 says, "And Paul, as his manner was, went in unto them, and three sabbath days reasoned with them out of the scriptures." Sabbath keeping was Paul's manner or custom, the exact same custom that Christ had, worshiping on the Sabbath. Acts 18:4, "And he reasoned in the synagogue every sabbath, and persuaded the Jews and the Greeks." Now notice, Paul was preaching every Sabbath and not only to the Jews but to the Greeks or the Gentiles, not on Sunday, the first day of the week, but on Sabbath. Here's another one. Acts 13:42 and 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." Many people say, "Well, he preached to the Jews only on Sabbath but when he preached to the Gentiles, it was on the first day of the week." But now here we find the Gentiles asking that he also preach to them on the Sabbath. Now notice verse 44. What did Paul do about this request? "And the next sabbath day came almost the whole city together to hear the word of God." Why, friends, there it is, Sabbath keepers! That's what the scripture says very, very plainly about the apostles.

Now we do know this. Paul positively did not teach Sunday keeping. You say, "Well, how do you know that? Well let's read a verse on it now. Acts 28:17. Paul was under arrest, and this is the way our text reads: "And it came to pass, that after three days Paul called the chief of the Jews together: And when they were come together, he said unto them, Men and brethren, though I have committed nothing against the people, or customs of our fathers, yet was I delivered prisoner from Jerusalem into the hands of the Romans." Now I want you to notice that Paul said to all those Jews gathered together, "Brethren I'm here in prison at the hands of the Romans but I want you to know that it wasn't because I taught anything against the teachings of our fathers." Now everybody, even the most orthodox Sunday-keepers today, will tell you that the Jews kept Saturday. No one denies that the Jews kept the Sabbath and Paul, standing there before them, was saying, "I did nothing in my preaching or teaching against the tradition of the Jews." Now either Paul was telling an untruth or Paul did not teach Sunday keeping, friends. Of course we know Paul was telling the truth, so the disciples were Sabbath keepers and they taught Sabbath keeping.

Let me say this further, neither Christ nor the disciples ever thought or taught that the first day of the week was a holy day. We plan to go into that more fully tomorrow when we'll read every text in the Bible that even mentions the first day of the week and examine every one of them carefully. If we don't get to it tomorrow, we'll get to it the next day. But be assured of this, friends, the first day of the week as a holy day is not in the Bible at all.

Now, the next reason for keeping the Sabbath is that it's necessary if I plan to be blessed. Let's read Isaiah 56:2. "Blessed is the man that doeth this, and the son of man that layeth hold on it; that keepeth the sabbath from polluting it, and keepeth his hand from doing any evil." Now, do you want to be blessed, friend? I'll tell you how, keep the Sabbath. A lot of folks will say, "Oh yes, but that was for the Jews." Well, let's read on now in verse 6: "Also the sons of the stranger that join themselves to the Lord, (now here you have Gentiles, friends) to serve Him, and to love the name of the Lord, to be his servants, every one that keepeth the sabbath from polluting it, and taketh hold of my covenant; even them will I bring to my holy mountain, and make them joyful in my house of prayer: for mine house shall be called an house of prayer for all people." And so, if the Book means anything, and it means everything, of course, Sabbath keeping is necessary if we are to receive God's full blessing. By the way, that word "blessed" actually means "happy". Nothing will bring peace of mind and inner happiness like Sabbath keeping. For spiritual, mental, and physical well-being, it's unequaled. These ancient records of scripture recommend rest, Sabbath rest, for health and happiness long before modern medicine ever made the discovery or made the recommendation.

Well, I could give many, many more reasons as to why we should keep the Sabbath. I shall give more, though, in a later broadcast, but these are the four key reasons that I've given so far and I hope you'll study them over very carefully, friends.

Now I'd like to examine a few reasons people give for not keeping the seventh day Sabbath. The first one is, "It's Jewish." You've heard that over and over again. A person becomes a member of the Sabbath keeping church and folks will say every time, "Oh, you've become a Jew" or "That's Jewish." Well, friends, I've looked through the Bible again and again and have never been able to discover where the Lord called it a Jewish Sabbath anywhere. I have, however, discovered where He called it something else. Exodus 20, verse 10. We read it a moment ago. "The seventh day is the sabbath of the , Jews, is that what it says? No indeed. It says, "The seventh day is the sabbath of the Lord thy God." Now people may call it the Jewish Sabbath but God calls it the Sabbath of the Lord. Isaiah 56:6, notice what it says now. "Also the sons of the stranger, that join themselves to the Lord, to serve him, and to love the name of the Lord, to be his servants and lay hold of the sabbath." Now he's speaking here of keeping the Sabbath and he says we'll be blessed in doing it but notice that these people joined themselves to the Lord when they began to keep the Sabbath. People say you've joined the Jews when you keep the Sabbath but the Bible says that you've joined the Lord. God has an entirely different opinion from men today about some of these things.

Mark 2:27 is a text that must be brought in right here. "The sabbath was made for man," Now a great many people, if they were writing the Scriptures, would change that and say that the Sabbath was made for the Jews, but that isn't what the Bible says. The Bible says that the Sabbath was made for man, MAN. When was it made? Let's go back into Scriptures, way back to the beginning, in the Book of Genesis, Chapter 2, verses 1, 2, and 3. We find this story. "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." According to the Bible then, the Sabbath was made way back in the beginning for man. Now how many men were living when the Sabbath was made? Why, just one, of course, and his name was Adam, and Adam was not a Jew. It was 2500 years after Adam was made before the first Jews appeared. But God made the Sabbath at creation and made it for man. Once again, that's a collective noun meaning all mankind, all men and women everywhere, for all time. The Sabbath is for everybody. Now I hope that you'll see that today, friends. I hope you'll understand it. This is not a fantastic fanatical new message. No, indeed, this message is as old as the Bible, as old as the world. Talk about old-time religion; the old time way is the Sabbath-keeping way. That's what the Bible taught from long long ago.

Now the second excuse some people give as a reason for not keeping the Sabbath is this. "Oh, any day will do as long as a person is sincere." Did you notice when we read these verses from Genesis 2 that the Scripture says that it was the seventh day. He rested on the seventh day. He sanctified it. He hallowed it. That means that He took this day and set it apart for a sacred use. That's what sanctify means, to set apart for sacred use. Now it didn't say a seventh day, it said the seventh day. Let me use an illustration here that I think you'll remember. It's very important. You'll hear this thing over and over, "any day will do as long as you're sincere." That's not what the Bible says, though, and this may help you to understand the thing clearly.

Suppose we lined up seven ladies right here in front of this microphone, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, right on down to the end and there is my little brown-haired wife at the end, and all of them here total up seven. We'll number them just as God did in creation. The evening and the morning were the first day, evening and morning were the second day, and one was set apart, the seventh. Let's let the seventh day be represented by my wife at the end of this line of seven ladies. She's the seventh lady right on the end. Suppose I said, "Now, friends, I have a new theory. I don't think it makes any difference which of these seven is my wife. Just any one will do and I'm going to prove it to you. We'll start over here and I'll start counting in the middle of this group, 1, 2, 3, and then back to the other end, 4, 5, 6, 7 , I end up counting on lady No. 4 and say, "That one can be my wife. It won't make any difference as long as I'm sincere about it." What would you think about that, friends? Well, I'm not too concerned about what you would think; I'm more concerned about what you'd do. You'd run me off the air and out of this city because there's something radically wrong with that kind of thinking. One was set apart as my wife by the sacred marriage vows, only one. Its the same thing with the Sabbath. God took it, set it apart, lifted it up above the other days, stamped upon it holiness, and said, "It is My holy day." Now who can say that it doesn't make any difference, friends?

Well, our time has slipped away from us again and we're going to have to wait until tomorrow to continue this important study right out of the Scriptures about the holy Sabbath day. Keep listening, friends, because we want to exhaust this subject if we can. There are so many angles to it and we want to answer every question that has ever come up in your mind about the keeping of God's Ten Commandments and about the importance of this Sabbath in particular.

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