New Booklet: The Authority of Christ and the First Day Sabbath

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 Which is the true day of worship for Christians - Saturday or Sunday?

Listen to: the clear teachings of Scripture, the Apostles and the Early Church Fathers.

Creation Ordinance

It is God's Creation ordinance that man begins his week by submitting to God and humbly listening to His Word. Before the Fall of Adam and Eve into sin, mankind was to start his week with a Sabbath rest and worship.


Fall
After the Fall, God commanded man to end his week with a Sabbath. The Paradise rest which God provided, and which was symbolised in the Sabbath, was forfeited by man's disobedience. This first day Sabbath would only be restored by the Second Adam's future obedience.

Redemption
In Christ the first day Sabbath is restored to its position at Creation and man can once again rest in God’s finished work of Recreation and Redemption before he embarks on a week of obedience and service to the Lord.

Day Six
All of the days of God’s Creation week are a model for man’s worship, service, dominion and rest. The order of events on Day 6 were the Creation of land creatures (Genesis 1:24-25), the Creation of Adam (Gen 2:7), the Creation of the garden (Gen 2:8), instructions to man (Gen 2:15-17), the bringing of the animals before Adam to be named, and also to create in him a desire for his own partner (Gen 2:18-20), the Creation of Eve (Gen 2:21-25), further instructions (Gen 1:28-30), and the ending of the day with God’s declaration that everything was “Very good” (Gen 1:31). Comparing Gen 1:29-31 with the time span of Gen 2:7-21 shows that Eve was created towards the end of Day 6, in time to hear God’s blessings and commandments in Gen 1:28-31 and before the ushering in of the Sabbath.

Man’s First Full Day Was the Sabbath
So mankind’s first full day was God’s Sabbath Day. Day 7 of God’s week was mankind’s first day, “evening and morning”. God ended His week with rest, but God intended man to begin his week with worship and rest. From the very beginning God made clear the distinction between Creator and creature. Man must not attempt to play God by exercising dominion in his own strength and wisdom. God is our Creator and we must begin our week by bowing to Him and submitting to His instructions. It is only as we rest in God’s finished work of Creation that we can be in any position to be effective in God-honouring dominion.

The Bondage of the Law
From the time of the Fall, God commanded man to end his week with a Sabbath rest. One of the many consequences of mans' sin was that instead of beginning the week in God's grace and strength, man was placed under the burden of the Law, to enjoy a Sabbath rest only at the end of his work week. This pointed to the promised Messiah who would accomplish what the first Adam had failed to do. Man's rest was cursed, just as his dominion was. Until the time of the Messiah, mankind was commanded to imitate God by completing his work week before being able to enjoy a Sabbath rest. So Cain and Abel brought their sacrifices before God at the end of the week. In Exodus 16, even before Israel arrived at Mount Sinai and before the Law was given, they observed the Sabbath on the seventh day. The New Testament speaks of this Sabbath imagery to illustrate the bondage symbolised in the pre-resurrection Sabbath observance and to point to the liberty and grace the Messiah would bring.

"Now on the first day of the week, very early in the morning they came to the tomb" John 20:1

“Those from among you shall build the old waste places; you shall raise up the foundations of many generations; and you shall be called the Repairer of the Breach, the Restorer of Streets to Dwell In.” Isaiah 58:12

To read more, obtain the new booklet The Authority of Christ and the First Day Sabbath by Dr Peter Hammond fromChristian Liberty Books for R10 (excluding postage). P.O. Box 358, Howard Place, 7450, Cape Town, 021 – 6897478, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. , Website: www.christianlibertybooks.co.za.

You can also download the booklet as an e-book here.

Africa Christian Action
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