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Nehemiah the Sabbath Reformer
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Rebuilding the Moral Law

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message 1: by Marc (new) - added it

Marc Rasell (mrasell) | 16 comments Nehemiah rebuilt of the walls of Jerusalem under intense opposition. Despite threats, accusations and intimidation, Nehemiah and the people resolutely worked to repair the walls of the city, trusting in God for safety. The story has deep spiritual lessons for God's people at the end of time when they will be called to repair the breaches made in the law of God. Although the walls have been damaged the foundations remain; a work of reformation will restore the Sabbath which is the biggest hole that has been made in the wall of God's law.


message 2: by Rod (new)

Rod Horncastle I think Jesus being ignored and not considered God would be a bigger deal than the Sabbath.

Is the Sabbath mentioned in the Book of Revelation? I don't recall? What have you found?


message 3: by Marc (new) - added it

Marc Rasell (mrasell) | 16 comments Rod wrote: "I think Jesus being ignored and not considered God would be a bigger deal than the Sabbath.

Is the Sabbath mentioned in the Book of Revelation? I don't recall? What have you found?"


Have a look at Revelation 14:7 and verse 12. There is a call to worship God as the Creator, and those who do this keep God's commandments. Verse 7 is very similar in wording to the Sabbath commandment.

Marc


message 4: by Rod (new)

Rod Horncastle THat is some desperate theology Marc. I totally disagree. Don't read things into the Bible that aren't there.


message 5: by Marc (last edited Jan 14, 2013 08:51AM) (new) - added it

Marc Rasell (mrasell) | 16 comments Rod wrote: "THat is some desperate theology Marc. I totally disagree. Don't read things into the Bible that aren't there."

What do you think about the 4th commandment, to keep the seventh day holy?

Once you identify the beast, then its clear why Sunday is the mark of the beast, because what greater authority can one erroneously claim than to be able to change God's laws?

A seal contains the name, jurisdiction, and office of the one giving the seal. The Sabbath contains all these element, the name of God, his jurisdiction of the heavens and the earth and office as Creator.

By keeping the Sabbath one is accepting God's seal of authority, that you belong to God who is your Creator and Re-creator.

Marc


message 6: by Rod (new)

Rod Horncastle The Sabbath is a wonderful amazing gift from God. It's best NOT to turn it into a religion.

Exodus 31:17
"It is a sign forever between me and the people of Israel that in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, and on the seventh day he rested and was refreshed."

I'm NOT an Israelite, are YOU? :D


message 7: by Marc (last edited Jan 15, 2013 02:58AM) (new) - added it

Marc Rasell (mrasell) | 16 comments Rod wrote: "The Sabbath is a wonderful amazing gift from God. It's best NOT to turn it into a religion.

Exodus 31:17
"It is a sign forever between me and the people of Israel that in six days the Lord made he..."


According to Paul all who believe in Jesus are part of Israel. He also taught that the law is holy, just and good (Rom. 7:12), and that faith does not nullify the law (Rom. 3:31). I believe Christians should observe the 10 Commandments. The seventh day was made holy at Creation (Gen. 2:2-3), so it is a day for all mankind.

Most denominations state in their creeds and beliefs that we should observe the Moral Law or 10 Commandments, but not the civil and ceremonial laws:

Reformed-Second Helvetic Confession - chapter 12: affirms 10 Commandments.

Church of England-Thirty-nine Articles of Religion, Article 7: affirms moral law of the Old Testament, but not civil or ceremonial
(Protestant Episcopal and Methodist articles of Religion article 6 is the same as above)

Presbyterian-Westminster Confession of Faith chapters 19, 20: affirms moral law which was common to those under the law but we are free from the ceremonial law
(Congregational-Savoy Declaration and Baptist-Philadelphia Confession same as above)

Baptist-New Hampshire Confession, article 12: affirms that the law is holy, just and good.

A good website for the history of the Sabbath is www.SabbathTruth.com

Marc


message 8: by Rod (new)

Rod Horncastle Marc statement:
"According to Paul all who believe in Jesus are part of Israel."

Please show me this verse. Very interesting.

The law is wonderful and good. But exactly HOW?

What examples do we have of obeying the Sabbath in the New Testament? Is this very very important law explained in great detail by Paul, Jesus, Peter, John, James, Matthew etc... why not? We have tons and tons of information about other things in the New Testament.

The laws are very interesting.

Leviticus 19:19
19 “‘Keep my decrees.

“‘Do not mate different kinds of animals.

“‘Do not plant your field with two kinds of seed.

“‘Do not wear clothing woven of two kinds of material.


message 9: by Marc (last edited Jan 17, 2013 03:31AM) (new) - added it

Marc Rasell (mrasell) | 16 comments Rod wrote: "Marc statement:
"According to Paul all who believe in Jesus are part of Israel."

Please show me this verse. Very interesting.


In Romans 11, Paul describes the Gentile believers as ingrafted branches, and in verse 26 says all Israel will be saved, by which he means Jews and Gentiles (grafted in) who believe in Jesus.

Rod wrote:What examples do we have of obeying the Sabbath in the New Testament?

In the book I have a section about Jesus and the Sabbath. This is a summary:

a) Jesus attended the synagogue on the Sabbath (Mark 1:21; 6:2; Luke 4:16, 31; 13:10.) Luke 4:16 it says it was His custom to do so.

b) Jesus' Sabbath counsel in Matt 24:20 shows that the Sabbath was to be honored after His death.

c) Not all of the Sabbath healings were controversial, these were the earliest recording healing on the Sabbath:
the healing of the demoniac in the synagogue (Mark 1:21-28; Luke 4:31-37)
the healing of Peter's mother in law (Matt 8:14-15; Mark 1:29-31; Luke 4:31-37)

d) The plucking of the grain of the Sabbath -
according to the oral law later codified in the Mishna and Talmuds this was classed as Sabbath breaking but Jesus saw nothing wrong with what the disciples had done.

e) Jesus’ statements, 'the son of man is lord of the Sabbath' and 'the Sabbath was made for man not man for the Sabbath' affirm the Sabbath, but were made to show that Jesus knows the right way to keep the Sabbath.

f) The controversial Sabbath healings:
One of the best examples is the man healed of the withered hand (Matt. 12:9-13; Mark 3:1-5; Luke 6:6-10.)
According to the Mishna which was codified later a sick person could only be treated on the Sabbath if the condition was life threatening.
The Scribes and Pharisees asked Jesus if it was lawful to heal on the Sabbath in order to accuse Him (Matt. 12:10; Luke 6:7.)
Jesus responded by asking if they would pull an animal out of a pit on the Sabbath? Matt 12:11, and “is it lawful to do good on the Sabbath or to do harm, to save life or to kill” Mark 3:4
The rabbinical rules allowed helping an animal out of a pit but not healing a sick person. Jesus was saying should we show less compassion to a human than an animal?

The controversy over the Sabbath was about the way it should be kept, according to God’s laws and not human regulations, Jesus did not adhere to the rabbinical man made rules (see Mark 7; Matthew 15).

The apostles Paul is recorded as observing the Sabbath 83 times, and the apostles taught people to uphold the 10 Commandments, a good example is James 2:10-11.

Marc


message 10: by Rod (last edited Jan 17, 2013 10:38AM) (new)

Rod Horncastle Are we still to be circumcised then? If I am now an Israelite? Why not?

Of course the Jews of the New Testament honored the Sabbath - especially Paul. But did the Gentile believers who didn't dwell in the temples of Judaism?

Matthew 24:20 is very interesting.
"Pray that your flight may not be in winter or on a Sabbath."

It's true that these things will be a hindrance to fleeing for safety. But flee none the less.

Isn't it interesting that the New Testament does not clearly say; "All Gentiles and Jews must always obey the Sabbath...and here's exactly how..."

Personally I think the Sabbath is wonderful. And in Heaven it will be enjoyed for all eternity most likely. But some people treat it like their very salvation depends on it. The Sabbath is a blessing - not a curse.


message 11: by Marc (last edited Jan 18, 2013 03:00AM) (new) - added it

Marc Rasell (mrasell) | 16 comments Rod wrote: Are we still to be circumcised then? If I am now an Israelite? Why not?

Paul makes an interesting statement in 1 Cor. 7:19
"Circumcision is nothing, and uncircumcision is nothing, but the keeping of the commandments of God."

Rod wrote:Of course the Jews of the New Testament honored the Sabbath - especially Paul. But did the Gentile believers who didn't dwell in the temples of Judaism?

In the 11th century Queen Margaret wrote a letter to an English cousin complaining that the Scots rested on Saturday but treated Sunday as an ordinary day. She set out to change this.

The move to change from Saturday to Sunday took many centuries. The turning point is really the 6th century. Some Christians who were cut off from the western church such as Ethiopia and the Celtic Christians in Britain continued to observe Saturday. (I've included some details of people who observed the Sabbath and were persecuted in this book: Religious Liberty and the Fall of Babylon)

Rod wrote:Isn't it interesting that the New Testament does not clearly say; "All Gentiles and Jews must always obey the Sabbath...and here's exactly how..."

There was no need to because both Christians and Jews observed the Sabbath, there was no dispute about this at this time. It was after the time of the apostles and the centuries that followed that it became an issue. There was a lot of anti-semitism in the Roman Empire, and an influx of not truly converted pagan sun worshipers into the church. When Constantine "converted", Christianity became popular. It was Constantine who introduced the first Sunday law.

Rod wrote: Personally I think the Sabbath is wonderful. And in Heaven it will be enjoyed for all eternity most likely. But some people treat it like their very salvation depends on it. The Sabbath is a blessing - not a curse.

I think the problem is can we divide the 10 Commandments into those we must keep and those which are optional? James 2:10-11 indicates that they are a unit, if we break one we break them all.

The law is not a curse except to those who break it. The law cannot save a person, only Christ can. Yet that is no a license to break them.

Suppose I were to ask, does your salvation depend on not murdering, stealing, blaspheming and committing adultery? Why treat one commandment different than all the rest?

Paul indicates that those who live ungodly lives will not inherit God's Kingdom (1 Cor. 6:9-10).

At present most Christians are not away of the truth about the Sabbath, but that will change as time goes on and then they will have to decide whether to obey God's law or man's law.

Marc


message 12: by Rod (new)

Rod Horncastle THanks for this fun conversation Marc. I'm still looking into a few more things.

Is the breaking of the Sabbath a bigger sin than any other? Is this how you see it in Revelation?

For instance: is getting the Mark of the beast equivalent to blaspheming the Holy Spirit? Maybe.


message 13: by Marc (last edited Jan 21, 2013 02:21AM) (new) - added it

Marc Rasell (mrasell) | 16 comments Rod wrote: "THanks for this fun conversation Marc. I'm still looking into a few more things.

Is the breaking of the Sabbath a bigger sin than any other? Is this how you see it in Revelation?

For instance: is..."


I think its important to understand the reason God gave man the Sabbath. Before sin entered the world, God saw that if man worked 7 days a week there would be a danger he would become too focused on his own works. We need the Sabbath to reflect on the blessings of the past week, and also to realize our dependence on God. It is a time for spiritual renewal. The Sabbath when kept properly is a great blessing, its a day people look forward to.

The Sabbath is special because it is the only Commandment which identifies whom we worship - our Creator. It is also given in Exodus 31:13 as a sign between us and God.

"Speak thou also unto the children of Israel, saying, Verily my sabbaths ye shall keep: for it is a sign between me and you throughout your generations; that ye may know that I am the Lord that doth sanctify you."

By keeping the Sabbath we show that we belong to God. Also God promises to sanctify those who keep the Sabbath. True Sabbath keeping is about coming into closer communion with God, and being made holy by Him through Jesus. The difference between those who receive the seal of God and the mark of the beast revolves around character and obedience to God's Commandments. One cannot expect to be sanctified by God if we break His Commandments.

I do believe the Sabbath is special, but there is danger in thinking we can break any of the Commandments. In essence this is what the Pharisees did, when then used the first four Commandments to justify breaking the last six! But Jesus rejected this type of reasoning in Matthew 15. This was why Jesus tended to emphasis the last six commandments.

For example, to get out of helping one's parents, the Pharisees had a system called Corban where you could say the money was dedicated to God. After the parents had died you could get the money back. The justification was that honouring God was more important than honouring your parents. But Jesus said it was just a human tradition which broke God's Commandments.

"...Why do ye also transgress the commandment of God by your tradition?" Matthew 15:3

Marc


message 14: by Marc (new) - added it

Marc Rasell (mrasell) | 16 comments Rod wrote: "is getting the Mark of the beast equivalent to blaspheming the Holy Spirit"

You might be interested in my book:
The Mark of the Beast and the Seal of God

The Seal of God is seen inwardly in our heart when the Holy Spirit works on it, but outwardly it is seen in obedience to the Commandments of God.


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