True Sabbath Keeping
Galatians 4:8-12 and the Christian’s
Relationship to the Sabbath
July 31, 2005 Ryan Habbena
The Sabbath Commands
EXODUS 20:8 "Remember the sabbath day, to
keep it holy.
ISAIAH 56:2 "How blessed is the man who
does this, And the son of man who takes hold
of it; Who keeps from profaning the sabbath,
And keeps his hand from doing any evil."
What is the Christian’s
Relationship to the Sabbath in
light of the cross of Christ?
The Two Scriptural Concepts of
1)The Ritual Observance – Do not do any
work, as prescribed by the law, on the 7th day of
2)The Theological Principle – The “rest”
granted by God to his people from toil. Rest is
rooted in “Creation” and “Exodus.”
“Turning Back” to Slavery
GAL 4:8-9 However at that time, when you did
not know God, you were slaves to those which
by nature are no gods. But now that you have
come to know God, or rather to be known by
God, how is it that you turn back again to the
weak and worthless elemental things, to which
you desire to be enslaved all over again?
“Observing” in Vain
GAL 4:10-11 You observe days and months and
seasons and years. I fear for you, that perhaps I
have labored over you in vain.
An Ironic Reversal
GAL 4:12 I beg of you, brethren, become as I am,
for I also have become as you are. You have
done me no wrong;
A Summary of Paul’s Argument
The coming of the King has fulfilled the
promises to which the Jewish calendar
foreshadowed, therefore it is not necessary
to observe them.
In fact, we are called in light of the cross to
abandon these as a condition of covenant
We Enter Ultimate Rest through
HEB 4:2-3 For indeed we have had good news
preached to us, just as they also; but the word
they heard did not profit them, because it was
not united by faith in those who heard. For we
who have believed enter that rest
HEB 4:9-11 So there remains a Sabbath rest for
the people of God. For the one who has entered
His rest has himself also rested from his works,
as God did from His. Therefore let us be
diligent to enter that rest, so that no one will fall,
through following the same example of
Our True Rest is Wholly Centered on
MAT 11:28-29 Come to Me, all who are weary
and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. Take
My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am
gentle and humble in heart, and you will find
rest for your souls.
Matthew 12:6-8 "But I say to you that
something greater than the temple is here. But if
you had known what this means, 'I desire
compassion, and not a sacrifice,' you would not
have condemned the innocent. "For the Son of
Man is Lord of the Sabbath."
Is Sunday the New Sabbath?
Who are you to judge the servant of another? To
his own master he stands or falls; and he will
stand, for the Lord is able to make him stand.
One person regards one day above another,
another regards every day alike. Each person
must be fully convinced in his own mind. He
who observes the day, observes it for the Lord,
and he who eats, does so for the Lord, for he
gives thanks to God; and he who eats not, for
the Lord he does not eat, and gives thanks to
True Rest is Found in Christ, and
in Christ Alone
Enticed to “Turn Back”
"This is not a minor issue. (Keeping Saturday
Sabbath) This is one of God's Ten
Commandments! Would you consider it a minor
issue if 98 percent of the church was committing
adultery, stealing, lying, murdering, worshipping
idols, or using the Lord's name in vain
continuously week after week throughout each
and every year?"
#1 “Turn away” from the Elementary
Principles of the Ceremonial Law
HEB 4:1 Therefore, let us fear if, while a
promise remains of entering His rest, any one of
you may seem to have come short of it.
#2 Turn to the “True Sabbath”
When you were dead in your transgressions and
the uncircumcision of your flesh, He made you
alive together with Him, having forgiven us all
our transgressions, having canceled out the
certificate of debt consisting of decrees against
us, which was hostile to us; and He has taken it
out of the way, having nailed it to the cross.
When He had disarmed the rulers and
authorities, He made a public display of them,
having triumphed over them through Him.
#2 Turn to the “True Sabbath”
Therefore no one is to act as your judge in regard
to food or drink or in respect to a festival or a
new moon or a Sabbath day -- things which are
a mere shadow of what is to come; but the
substance belongs to Christ.
#3 Rest in the Assurance that you are
Known by God
By this the love of God was manifested in us, that
God has sent His only begotten Son into the
world so that we might live through Him. In
this is love, not that we loved God, but that He
loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation
for our sins.