Help for Today — Hope for Tomorrow
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[Gary] I was reading an article online that sparked quite a controversy. The author claimed that there are spiritual, emotional and physical benefits for Christians who observe some form of the Fourth Commandment. The Commandment to observe the Sabbath.The article produced a torrent of comments. Some people accused the author of not knowing Christ because of her desire to observe a Sabbath. Others claimed that they found great spiritual rejuvenation by taking one day off during the week for rest and worship. One person then pointed out that according to the Bible the Sabbath is a very specific day—the day we call Saturday in the western world. This created more heated controversy.Why do Christians argue about the Sabbath?Well today, let’s look at what the Bible actually says about the Sabbath. We’ll also talk with a pastor and other Christians about this subject as we explore “Is the Sabbath Relevant for Christians?”[Announcer] Join our host Gary Petty and his guests, as they help you understand your future on Beyond Today ![Gary] Why do some people find great spiritual benefits in observing the Sabbath while others claim that Sabbath observance is the same as denying Christ?These are polar opposite viewpoints. Discovering the truth will help unlock a great blessing in your life.Now the first thing we have to do is define, what is the Sabbath?Christians dispute that Sunday is the Sabbath, or that Saturday is the Sabbath, or that the Sabbath is a principle guiding everyone to choose a day each week for rest and spiritual rejuvenation. Others argue that Jesus is the Sabbath and that any talk of a day is irrelevant.A foundation of Christian faith is belief in creation and a Creator, not just happenstance evolution. At the very beginning of the Bible, in the book of Genesis, we read about creation, how God prepared the earth for human beings.Genesis 2 states: “Thus the heavens and the earth, and all the host of them, were finished. And on the seventh day God ended 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” (Genesis 2:1-2 1 Thus the heavens and the earth were finished, and all the host of them. 2 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. ×).When God finished the physical creation He set aside the seventh day as a day of rest. The controversy among Christians about the Sabbath—it begins right here.Does this passage prove that human beings should follow the example of the Creator and observe the seventh-day Sabbath—or is it just an allegory of God experiencing a mystical rest?Earlier I mentioned the fourth of the Ten Commandments. Well let’s read what the Fourth Commandment actually says, “Remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work…For in six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day. Therefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day and hallowed it” (Exodus 20:8-11 8 Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy. 9 Six days shall you labor, and do all your work: 10 But the seventh day is the sabbath of the LORD your God: in it you shall not do any work, you, nor your son, nor your daughter, your manservant, nor your maidservant, nor your cattle, nor your stranger that is within your gates: 11 For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: why the LORD blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it. ×).Pay close attention to what is written in the Fourth Commandment. After preparing the earth and creating human beings, God rested on the seventh day…”Therefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day and hallowed it.” To “hallow” means to make something holy, to set aside something for special use by God.