Below is a follow-up letter written by a visitor of Blow the Trumpet. It is written in response to our letter to him explaining why the Sabbath is still in force in the New Testament. In this follow-up he continues to assert that Sunday is the real Sabbath established by the apostles. We have provided his letter in its entirety followed by our response.

 

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The Letter

  

Dear Sir/Madam,

  

Please allow me to bring a counter-argument and clarify some of my views:

  1. Your argument that the women kept the commandment for the Sabbath. The church was not established yet. It was established with the Apostles. Therefore, the women were right in keeping the Sabbath. My argument is that, with the establishment of the church, the day of worship for the * Church* was changed to Sunday. It *is* true that the Sabbath commandment is NOT *commanded* in the New Testament. Nowhere in the Epistles (Romans, I & II Corinthians...) is that command mentioned. Paul indeed preached in the *synagogue* on the Sabbath, but it was *primarily* to the Jews--There was NO church yet; contextual interpretation clearly clarifies that. If it were a command, would not Paul have included it in the letter to the Romans--a purely Gentile group who would need exactly that?
      
  2. The argument that "the Lord's Day" refers to "the Day of the Lord" is erroneous. "I was in the Spirit on the Lord's Day..." Do you mean to argue that John was transported in time *to "the final year of man's reign on earth"** *already? The events that immediately followed make it clear it *could not* refer to the "Day of the Lord" *that Isaiah was referring to*.
      
  3. I DO NOT believe in Good Friday. It is a human institution. Never are we commanded in Scripture to "commemorate" the Lord's death. Hence I do not count it even relevant to our discussion. The Scriptures do indicate that the Lord rose on the first day of the week.
      
  4. I DO NOT believe that the Ten Commandments was abolished at the Cross. It was not. The *specific commandment* of the Sabbath was *abolished for the church and not at the cross*. The rest of the Ten Commandments is in full force throughout the New Testament, and repeated over and over again. The Law was NOT abolished, "For by the law is the knowledge of Sin." Romans 3:20. The law's purpose in the New Testament is the same as the one in the Old--Knowledge of my sin. Your quote from Exodus is not correct because indeed the Sabbath was a sign between God's People--* Israel *. That is why I asked if you distinguished between the *Church Age* and * Israel.*
     
  5. It puzzles me that you would cling so tightly to the Ten Commandments. They DO represent all of God's law. But always, the emphasis in the New Testament is the fact that Christians are not bound by the law. Romans then goes into great detail as to how we do not take this fact to mean we can do what we like. NO. The point is that every TRUE CHRISTIAN has the Holy Spirit indwelling him that enables and makes him WANT to obey God. "... And I shall write my law on their hearts...." TRUE CHRISTIANS are the TRUE CHURCH.

In conclusion, I would like to say that noticeably, your quotations of Scripture almost exclusively come from the Old Testament, (which is past; we are under the New Testament) and the Gospels, (which *do not* lay down the foundation for the Church). The Millennium *is* another age or "time frame" in God's divine plan. There is no hint of "Sabbath keeping" from Romans to Jude. If the Sabbath were the day that the Lord ordained for *Church*worship, it should have been repeated in the exhortations of the Epistles, as they are, all over the Old Testament. *Do you believe in a separation of the Church and Israel in the Bible? * My question remains unanswered.

 

Sincerely,

 

Name Withheld

 

 

Our Response

 

 

Dear Sir,

 

Thank you for your follow-up note concerning your position on the Sabbath. The following is our response.

 

Your Comment:

 

“Your argument that the women kept the commandment for the Sabbath. The church was not established yet. It was established with the Apostles. Therefore, the women were right in keeping the Sabbath. My argument is that, with the establishment of the church, the day of worship for the Church was changed to Sunday. It is true that the Sabbath commandment is NOT commanded in the New Testament. Nowhere in the Epistles (Romans, I & II Corinthians...) is that command mentioned. Paul indeed preached in the synagogue on the Sabbath, but it was primarily to the Jews--There was NO church yet; contextual interpretation clearly clarifies that. If it were a command, would not Paul have included it in the letter to the Romans--a purely Gentile group who would need exactly that? “

 

Our Response:

 

    If a specific command in the New Testament is your standard for determining the true Sabbath as you claim, we have a question for you. Where in the New Testament are Christians commanded to keep Sunday? Where in the New Testament did God say He sanctified the first day and made it holy? The answer is NOWHERE! Why? Because He never did such a thing. However, in Hebrews chapter 4 verse 9 it says, “There remains therefore a keeping of the Sabbath to the people of God” (Cambridge Bible). The Lamsa translation renders it this way. “It is therefore the duty of the people of God to keep the Sabbath.”

 

    It strikes us as odd that when we point out that after Jesus’ death, women kept the Sabbath according to the command, you dismiss it because the church had not yet been established at that time. Then when we show that Paul kept the Sabbath as his manner was, you dismiss it as well because his audience was basically Jewish. What you fail to do is offer one ounce of Biblical proof that God changed His Sabbath or that anyone worshipped on Sunday with the exception of Pentecost, which was commanded in the law (Lev. 23) and kept in the Old Testament as well.

 

    What you argue as proof is that because certain historical events took place on the first day of the week, God must have somehow changed the day He made holy from the very beginning. However, never once do you show where He did this. By the way most of the events you cite didn’t even take place on Sunday anyway.

 

    You can fool yourself with these arguments if you wish but they are simply driven by a desire to rationalize your behavior, NOT a desire to honor the true GOD.  As hard as this is for you to grasp, Sunday is a Catholic institution. It did not come from the scriptures nor did Paul or any of the original apostles ever keep it. The Bible actually suggests that Paul even worked on this day.

 

    What we are stating here is no secret to most of normative Christianity. We suggest you read Sabbath Confessions. At least these Sunday-keepers are honest about the origin of this practice.

 

    Finally, here is something for you to think about. And we are serious—take some real time and ponder this one. If a major debate took place in the early church over circumcision, do you honestly think changing the Sabbath to Sunday would never have caused a peep?  Had this really happened as you claim, the result would have been NUCLEAR.

 

    The Sabbath was so established in the New Testament life that gentiles understood quite well its role in Christianity. Even they sought out Paul to speak to them on the Sabbath. It is utter nonsense to think otherwise.

 

"And when the Jews went out of the synagogue, the Gentiles begged that these words might be preached to them the next Sabbath." (Acts 13:42)

 

    Since Paul was preaching "the grace of God" (verse 43), he had a perfect opportunity to explain to these Gentiles that the Sabbath was done away. But he does no such thing. Furthermore, why should he wait a whole week to preach to the Gentiles on the next Sabbath if the day of worship had been changed to Sunday? Why didn’t Paul tell them they would not have to wait a week, but could learn of the Messiah the very next day and that Sunday was the proper day of worship?  Well, that’s not what happened. Notice what Luke writes. "And the next Sabbath almost the whole city came together to hear the word of God" (verse 44). Here Paul waits a whole week, passing up a Sunday, to preach to the Gentiles on the Sabbath.

 

 

Your Comment:

 

“The argument that "the Lord's Day" refers to "the Day of the Lord" is erroneous. "I was in the Spirit on the Lord's Day..." Do you mean to argue that John was transported in time “to "the final year of man's reign on earth” already? The events that immediately followed make it clear it could not refer to the “Day of the Lord" that Isaiah was referring to.

 

 

Our Response:

 

    You claim that the term “The Lords Day” refers to Sunday. Where in the Bible does it say that? The fact of the matter is that this term (the Lord’s Day) is only used once in the New Testament (Rev.1: 10). Furthermore, there is not one shred of evidence that it means Sunday. The fact that you claim it to be so is NOT proof.

 

    The Bible does however, speak of a time called “The Day of the Lord.” And when it does it describes a time of great judgement, which is what John is describing in Revelation. By the way, we are not suggesting that John was literally transported into the future as you suggest. It seems clear to us based on the scriptures that he was taken in vision into the future—even to a time when a new heaven and a new earth are fashioned.

 

 

Your Comment:

 

“I DO NOT believe in Good Friday. It is a human institution. Never are we commanded in Scripture to "commemorate" the Lord's death. Hence I do not count it even relevant to our discussion. The Scriptures do indicate that the Lord rose on the first day of the week.”

 

 

Our Response:

 

    Here you bring up two points. The following is our answer to number one.

 

For as often as you eat this bread, and drink this cup, you do show (celebrate) the Lord’s death till he come. (1 Cor. 11:26)

 

    With respect to number two, your contention that Jesus was raised on the first day of the week, we would again state that if that were true then you have no Savior. That’s right! The idea that Jesus’ resurrection took place on Sunday morning contradicts His own words. As we explained before, Jesus stated without ambiguity that he would be in the grave three days and three nights. It is without dispute that He was buried in the late afternoon. Now you do the math.

 

    A Sunday morning resurrection is a myth—one that calls Jesus a liar. The fact of the matter is that a Sunday morning sunrise service is a practice that was never engaged in by the apostolic church. It originated in the pagan world (Ezek. 8:13-18). We suggest you read our Booklet The Truth About Easter to gain some extraordinary insight into the origin of this holiday.

 

 

Your Comment:

 

“I DO NOT believe that the Ten Commandments was abolished at the Cross. It was not. The *specific commandment* of the Sabbath was *abolished for the church and not at the cross*. The rest of the Ten Commandments is in full force throughout the New Testament, and repeated over and over again. The Law was NOT abolished, "For by the law is the knowledge of Sin." Romans 3:20.”

 

Our Response:

 

    You have made it abundantly clear to us that you believe in the nine Commandments. Here is a question we would like you to consider. Why would God do away with a law whose trespass necessitated the death of His own Son? Here is a news flash. God didn’t send Jesus to this earth to repent of having made the Sabbath. He sent Him to pay the price for you breaking it. The Sabbath was and is HOLY. And there isn’t a syllable in God’s word that says otherwise. Those who have taught you that the Sabbath is done away have lied to you. Sunday worship came from Catholicism, like it or not. It was not kept by the early apostolic church. It was not kept by the Lamb of God. It was not kept by the great prophets that proclaimed His word. It was not kept by the champions of faith from Stephen on down. And it will NEVER be kept in His Kingdom.

 

Your Comment:

 

“The law's purpose in the New Testament is the same as the one in the Old--Knowledge of my sin. Your quote from Exodus is not correct because indeed the Sabbath was a sign between God's People--*Israel*. That is why I asked if you distinguished between the *Church Age* and *Israel. “

 

“It puzzles me that you would cling so tightly to the Ten Commandments. They DO represent all of God's law. But always, the emphasis in the New Testament is the fact that Christians are not bound by the *law*. Romans then goes into great detail as to how we do not take this fact to mean we can do what we like. NO. The point is that every TRUE CHRISTIAN has the Holy Spirit indwelling him that enables and makes him WANT to obey God. "... And I shall write my law on their hearts...." TRUE CHRISTIANS are the TRUE CHURCH.”

 

Our Response:

 

    When giving the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus made an extraordinary observation about God’s judgement on a particular group that claimed to worship Him.

 

Not every one that says unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that does the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? And in thy name have cast out devils? And in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, you that work iniquity. (Mt. 7: 21-23)

 

    The word iniquity in this verse is better rendered “lawlessness.” In other words “You who break my law.” It is also interesting that the Sabbath commandment promised that those who kept it would “know God” (Ex. 31:13).  Here the indictment is that these peoples lawlessness has resulted in not knowing God. We don’t think this is just a coincidence.

 

    With respect to the New Covenant, here is the official position of Blow the Trumpet. In the Old Testament God made a covenant between Himself and the physical descendants of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. They were called Israel. That covenant was anchored to His Great moral code, the Ten Commandments. When He made a new covenant for His people (the spiritual descendants of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob), he was not trashing the old. He was instead writing it on the heart (Jer. 31:33). It was the same law. But now it could be internalized by His people. It is clear to us that you do not have that law written on your heart. If you did you would see the Sabbath as a symbol of liberty, not bondage.

 

Your Comment:

 

In conclusion, I would like to say that noticeably, your quotations of Scripture almost exclusively come from the Old Testament, (which is past; we are under the New Testament) and the Gospels, (which *do not* lay down the foundation for the Church). The Millennium *is* another age or "time frame" in God's divine plan. There is no hint of "Sabbath keeping" from Romans to Jude. If the Sabbath were the day that the Lord ordained for *Church*worship, it should have been repeated in the exhortations of the Epistles, as they are, all over the Old Testament. *Do you believe in a separation of the Church and Israel in the Bible? *

 

 

Our Answer:

 

     This might come as a surprise to you but the apostle Paul only quoted from the Old Testament. In his letter to Timothy he called it “God Breathed” (2 Tim. 3:16). If you read the book of Acts that describes the journeys of that great man of God, you will find him in the temple on the Sabbath. He wasn’t there because of some marketing strategy. He was there because like his Lord, he honored the fourth commandment.

 

     Here is the deal. The Sabbath is alive and well in the new covenant. You can’t show one place in the scriptures that commands Sunday keeping. IT JUST AINT THERE!   We know you want it to be there, but it is not.

 

    Finally, we have spent considerable time communicating back and forth with you on this issue. And it is clear to us that your opinion is set at this time. Therefore, we will not engage in any further correspondence on this matter until you do the following:

 

  1. Show us where there is a command to keep Sunday as the Sabbath
     
  2. Explain what Jesus Meant when He said He would be Three days and three nights in the grave.
      
  3. Show where the Bible calls Sunday “The Lord’s Day.” (This will be impossible)
      
  4. Show where Jesus was raised on Sunday. We know you can show us where certain women went to His tomb on a Sunday, but that won’t do anymore than if they went to His tomb on a Monday.
      
  5. Offer an explanation for the scores of quotes from men like Martin Luther that admit that the Bible nowhere mentions that the Sabbath was ever changed from the seventh day to the first.

 

 

Respectfully,   

Blow the Trumpet

 

   

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