In this argument, David C. Pack assaults the intellectual prowess of the authors of A Sabbath Test. This particular denigration is based on the premise that because the Pharisees never cited Exodus 16 in their condemnation of Jesus’ disciples for picking grain on the Sabbath they never saw it is an issue. In other words even the religious leaders of Jesus' day were smart enough to know that the Messiah's apostles did not violate God's injunction in Exodus 16. Here is how this COG leader orchestrates his point followed by our response.
David C. Pack:
“The Pharisees were smart enough not to cite the Exodus 16 prohibition to condemn Christ and the disciples for Sabbath gleaning. Do any doubt that they would have overlooked this point, had it applied? The modern critics who use Exodus 16 reveal themselves to be uneducated. Outdoing their counterparts, these modern Pharisees “rush in” where even the original Pharisees would have ‘feared to tread’.”
In all due respect to Mr. Pack his explanation of this event as recorded in Matthew 12: 1-8 does not comport with the facts. To illustrate this point consider the following. First, this leader claims that because the Pharisees never mentioned Exodus 16, they never considered it in their accusation. However, what Mr. Pack subtly omits to say is that the Pharisees never mentioned any verses, nor did they identify any specific trespass. Their accusation was simply that Jesus’ disciples did that which was “Not Lawful” (Mt. 12:2).
Additionally, Mr. Pack never mentions that when the Messiah defended His disciples He invoked two examples—one involving Sabbath labor (the Levites) and one involving the acquisition of food (David and the shewbread). In truth, based on Jesus’ response, it is reasonable to conclude that the Pharisee’s accusation included both prohibitions as recorded in the fourth commandment (Ex. 20: 8-11) and the manna miracle (Ex. 16).
Furthermore, Mr. Pack failed to acknowledge that when Jesus offered the examples of David and the Levites when defending His men, He readily conceded that that both David and the Levites did that which went contrary to the law (Mt. 12:3-5). This now brings us to an important question. If what the disciples did was lawful, why would the Messiah cite the examples of David and the Levites in their defense?
At this point it is interesting to note that contrary to what Mr. Pack teaches, Jesus NEVER challenged the Pharisees' understanding of the law, but rather their understanding of MERCY. The truth that seems to be so elusive to him is that the Messiah considered His disciples "guiltless," not because of what they did, but because of why they did it. These men were genuinely famished, just like David—and like David, what was done to remedy it was unquestionably a once-in-a-lifetime act, not something that could be planned out and done periodically, as so many in God’s Church do today.
For a more detailed explanation of this extraordinary event see: Argument VI “Jesus Condoned It.”
David C. Pack is free to call Fischer and Braidic stupid (“uneducated”) if he wants, however, we would strongly recommend against it. We offer this advice because this COG leader does not shine when it comes to Biblical "smarts" in this issue. Quite frankly, he has demonstrated a remarkable lack of acumen when presenting his case. If you doubt this read on...
Throughout his essay Mr. Pack has consistently misrepresented both the scriptural and historical record by offering a host of distortions he claims to be "Biblical facts." These are not small boo boos, but rather world class blunders. What follows is a short list of this Church leader’s attempt to advance his case at the expense of truth.
Deception Distortion and Misrepresentation
- Mr. Pack claims that Levitical chefs in ancient Israel prepared great meals on the weekly Sabbath for God's people (see: Millennial Restaurants). He makes this assertion despite the fact that both history and the scriptures state no such thing ever took place. There isn't a hint that anything close to it ever occurred.
Mr. Pack claims that God's people brought sacrifices to the temple on the weekly Sabbath (see: Millennial Sacrifices). However, this assertion is totally FALSE. It NEVER happened. Furthermore, well established Jewish history bears this out. Additionally, the absence of offerings being presented on the Sabbath by the common people has rightly been cited by the Church under Mr. Mr. Armstrong as a reason for not taking up offerings on the weekly Sabbath today.
Mr. Pack claims that Jesus AND His disciples picked grain on the Sabbath when the scriptures specifically state that Jesus never picked, nor ate anything Himself, only the disciples did (see: Jesus Condoned It).
Mr. Pack claims that restaurant personnel actually perform a levitical function when they serve God's people and therefore should be held guiltless just like the priests who served in the temple (see: Millennial Restaurants). He offers this view despite the fact that God Almighty prohibited His people from preparing their Sabbath meals on the seventh day (Ex. 16:23-25). Furthermore, such Sabbath labor was considered a CAPITAL CRIME by God (Ex. 31:14-15).
Mr. Pack claims that God's prohibition against gathering food on the Sabbath was limited to manna. Therefore, God permitted the children of Israel to go outside their place and acquire other food stuffs (see: No More Manna). This assertion is made despite the fact that God Almighty specifically forbade the Israelites from "going outside their place" on the Sabbath (Ex. 16:29).
Mr. Pack claims that God's people spent money on the Sabbath when they traveled to the Feast of Tabernacles. He makes this assertion despite the fact that both the scriptures and the historical record say no such thing ever took place (see: Hiding Behind the Feast).
Mr. Pack claims that he bears no responsibility for the Sabbath labor restaurant workers perform on his behalf even though he specifically sought it out and paid for it (see:I'm Not Responsible).
A Final Thought
Mr. Pack may proclaim that what he advocates as appropriate Sabbath behavior is no different than what Jesus' disciples did once in their life. However, this is just wishful thinking disguised as wisdom. Furthermore, this COG leader may call Fischer and Braidic idiots if he wants. However, if he thinks this strategy is working we encourage him to think again. By the way, why doesn't Mr. Pack debate these men and expose their stupidity?
"The Mark of the Beast"
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