THE SABBATH AND THE GOSPEL

SONG 1: SONG 2:

Hebrews 4: 9 – 10: 9 There remains, then, a Sabbath rest for the people of God; 10 for anyone who enters God's rest also ceased from his own works, just as God did from his.
Today we are going to have a Bible study on Sabbath, but I am going to present it in a different way than we Adventists usually do it. I will try to explain to you the truth about Sabbath in the light of the gospel.

6 Then I saw another angel flying in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach to those who dwell on the earth… 7 saying with a loud voice, "Fear God and give glory to Him, for the hour of His judgment has come; and worship Him who made heaven and earth, the sea and springs of water." 8 And another angel followed, saying, "Babylon is fallen, is fallen, that great city, because she has made all nations drink of the wine..." 9 Then a third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice,"If anyone worships the beast and his image, and receives his mark on his forehead or on his hand, 10 he himself shall also drink of the wine of the wrath of God…

Look at verse

to this

verse 6 please and tell me what according verse should be the foundation of the

three angels message? The common ground of all the messages should be what? The everlasting gospel of course. It is so because the first angel has the everlasting gospel.

Revelation 14

I want to show you the proof that we should present the truth about Sabbath in the light of the gospel. In the 14th chapter of the book of Revelation we read about the three angels message. It is the message which is to be proclaim by us all over the world.
Revelation 14: 6-10 (NKJV)

second and third angel don’t go separately but they follow the first one. Greek word translated here as “followed”, means “to accompany” or “to join.”
But, please notice also that the

So it is obvious that those three angels

together and that the foundation of all their messages is what?

go

The common ground of those three messages is the everlasting gospel or the truth about salvation by faith in Jesus.

Now, what does it mean?

if we don’t present the truth about Sabbath, which is the part of the three angels message, in the light of the gospel, do we present it correctly?
It means that No!

name.

Since

that

time

their

name

is

the

Seventh Day

Pentecostal church.

this is the reason why our sincere brothers and sisters from evangelical churches are still not willing to accept the truth about Sabbath?
Well, may be

Ok. Now. First of all we must keep in mind that the Hebrew word „Sabbath” literally

means „rest”.

And it is very interesting that also the salvation through faith in Christ is often described in the New Testament by the same word “rest”.

Unfortunately, I know pastor and theologian,

only one
by the

Adventist

name

Sequeira,

Jack

who always presents the truth on Sabbath in the light of the Gospel. Not long ago I could listen to him again in the

The second important fact concerning Sabbath we will find if we answer a very simple question:

Central London Church where he said that one day certain Pentecostal pastor asked him, “How it is possible
brother that you preach the gospel truth so wonderfully and at the same time you keep the Sabbath?”
To this question pastor Sequeira replied, “Do you want me to answer your question privately or in front of all your congregation?” An he gave a series of Bible studies on Sabbath in front of

When the Sabbath was given for the mankind? It was given before the
fall or after the fall?
It was given before the fall. So, what does it mean?

members

800

if, Adam and Eve didn’t fall would we still be keeping God’s Sabbath as a day of rest today?
It means that
Yes, there is no doubt we would, because it was given before the fall as a sign of an everlasting covenant!

of the biggest Pentecostal church in Addis Ababa, proving that the Sabbath is Gods seal of righteousness by faith and memorial of the gospel. As a result of that the whole Pentecostal congregation (800 members) started to keep the fourth commandment and they also changed their

The next fact we should be aware of is that the first thing we discover

about

Pastor Sequeira was once accused by one of evangelical ministers of
keeping the Jewish Sabbath, so he said to him, “Show me one text, where the Bible says that the Sabbath belongs to the Jews.” Well, after four or five months this evangelical minister looking quite embarrassed came and had to confess that he couldn’t find even one text to prove his point. So pastor Sequeira said to him,

Sabbath in the Old Testament, is that It belongs to God:

it

doesn’t belong to man but to who?
Exodus 20:10 “the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord thy God.” In Exodus 31:13, God says: “my Sabbaths ye shall keep.” Isaiah 58:13 “my holy day . . . the holy of the Lord.”

don’t you ever

“Brother, please,

accuse me of keeping the Jewish Sabbath. I am not keeping the Jewish Sabbath. I am not keeping the Adventist Sabbath either. I am keeping God’s Sabbath. And I keep it under the new covenant.”

Having established the fact, that the Sabbath was God’s day of rest; now we must ask,

why, does the almighty God, who never gets tired set aside the seventh day as His special day of

rest?
Genesis 2: 1, 2. We read here that God, or Christ (because God created us through Christ) rested because His work of creation was completed, perfect and finished.
The answer is found in Genesis 2: 1-3 (NIV) 1 Thus the heavens and the earth were array.

So, knowing that the Sabbath belongs only to God,

it is unbiblical to label it as the Jewish Sabbath, as some Christians do.
Yes, the Sabbath was made for man, but it does not belong to any man including Jews.

completed in all their vast

2 By the seventh day God had finished the work he had been doing; so on the seventh day he rested from all his work. 3 And God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because on it he rested from all the work of creating that he had done.

Here is what certain popular scholar, by the name Sessler wrote about it:

“Why did God rest? He rested because what He created was absolutely perfect. It could not possibly be improved on. His creation was finished, brilliant, matchless and perfect.”

began our existence in Adam on Sabbath accepting the gift of finished and perfect creation and eternal life!
We just And what did we do in Adam after the

Sabbath?

We started working, because from the beginning Sunday was just a normal working day.

please, try to remember what I will tell you now, because it is extremely important as far as Sabbath is concerned:

extremely interesting that the same principle which we see in the creation we can apply also to the redemption:
And now, it is

After Christ created this world and

Adam

in the beginning he Sabbath.

rested

us in
on the

When did Jesus redeem us (or created us
anew in Himself)?
He did it also at the end of the sixth day on the cross, when He cried out, “It is finished!”

Why He rested?
He rested because what He created was

finished and
?

Why did He rest?
He rested because His work of redemption was also

perfect.
Did we
No.

finished “it is

and
Adam to create the world

perfect,
cried out

help God in

and that was the reason why on the cross He

finished”.
Now please notice how fact to the gospel:

our part, what did we do in Adam?
What was

Sessler,

applied this

“The cross of Christ so thoroughly, effectively, and completely accomplished what we need for salvation that there is nothing we can add to it, no matter how hard we try we cannot possibly make ourselves more acceptable to God. There is nothing we can add to our salvation.”
In other words, the salvation that God prepared in Christ, like creation was also perfect.

Well, what then is the true meaning of

the Sabbath?

to point to the perfect and finished salvation to which we can’t add anything!
It is obvious now, that the Sabbath is

So,

by

keeping

the

Sabbath

holy,

manifest that
perfect salvation and that

we

we accepted this finished and

we at last

our own works.

ceased from

Did we help Jesus to redeem us?
No. Jesus did it all by himself as our representative.

And this is exactly what apostle Paul meant in Hebrews 4: 9-10:

our part? What did we do?
What then was We just

accepted the gift of finished
on Sabbath resting in Jesus in the

and perfect salvation and eternal life tomb!

9 There remains, then, a Sabbath rest for the people of God; 10 for anyone who enters God's rest also ceased from his own works.
if we accept the perfect and finished salvation accomplished by God, then we also cease from our own works.
It means that if we accept God’s rest,

After resting in Jesus on the Sabbath

what happened

next day on Sunday?
We resurrected in Jesus not to rest but to work.

We cease from what kind of works?

Before accepting

the

perfect

salvation

from

Jesus

tried to work very hard
But now,

we

in order to save ourselves by our own so called good deeds and because of this we couldn’t find rest. because at last we are resting in Jesus, we have peace and joy which is the result of the assurance of salvation.

we are not supposed to work now?
But, does it mean that Of course we should work, and the same apostle Paul wrote that now

we

aim in good works. But the difference is that now we never do it in order to be
saved but because we are resting in the finished and perfect salvation accomplished by Jesus, of which Sabbath is the memorial.

It means also that

try to keep

we should never ever

it would contradict the true meaning of the Sabbath.
the sabbath in order to be saved, because

Jack Sequeira
Hebrews wrote:

in his commentary to

“When we make Sabbath keeping a requirement for salvation, we are not really entering into God’s

rest, which points to a perfect and finished salvation, but we have turned His Sabbath into salvation by works, the very opposite of what the Sabbath was intended for. And since by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified in His sight, such Sabbath keeping becomes meaningless. People who try to go to heaven by their own works are heavy laden. They have no peace. There are many Adventists who are in this category. They have no peace, no joy, no assurance because they are not sure they’ll make it. (Now, listen to this carefully) Therefore their Sabbath keeping is a lie. They are not resting. They are not enjoying Sabbath. It is a necessary requirement to them, a burden. They think, What time is Sabbath over so we can enjoy doing what we want to.”

You see, the

Jews

like many of us

the Sabbath gospel.

the

didn’t see in truth about the

doesn’t the law also says that even the stranger within your gates should not work?”
“Of course, I can switch the light on for you, but, by the way, And she was shocked that that stranger who didn’t look like a Jew knew the fourth commandment. So finally she said, “Yes, yes, but you know, you are a In other words, she was saying,

To them, the Sabbath was just “do’s and don’ts.” There are 69 rules in the Jewish Mishna, on how
to keep the Sabbath. Some of them are ridiculous. For example, you could never

Gentile.”

carry

a ladder on Sabbath. But if you

dragged
that.

it you were not breaking the Sabbath. They had rules like

“You are lost in any case, so it doesn’t matter if you break the Sabbath.” But brother Sequeira answered: “Ok, if you want, I am going to do it, but remember please, that while my

I was told recently that today those rules are
sometimes more silly. For instance, today if you are an orthodox Jew you can’t turn on the TV on Sabbath, but if you use an

hand does the act, I’m still doing your will, so, in Gods eyes it is you who will turn the light on. And if that is
sin, I am very sorry but you are finished.” “You are making it very hard.” She said. “No” answered pastor Sequeira, “not hard, but impossible. What you want to accomplish is impossible simply because you can’t be saved by the works of the law. There’s only one way for you to be saved and that is through accepting the Messiah who already came 2000 years ago.”

automatic timer

which turns your TV instead of you it is not sin to watch TV on Sabbath.

In one of his sermons pastor about certain

Sequeira

told

who asked him in a hotel to switch on the light in her room. She knew that for him it was rather strange request so she said, “You see, I’m a Jew, and it is a sin for us to switch the light because it is the same as kindling a fire.” What she didn’t realize was that the man she was talking to knew the fourth commandment, so she got very embarrassed when brother Sequeira replied:

older Jewish lady

Well, we often laugh at the Jewish way of keeping the Sabbath but to be honest sometimes we make similar rules. For example, in Scandinavian countries
you are allowed to swim, but playing football on Sabbath is considered to be sin. In Italy however, you can’t swim on Sabbath but you are allowed to play football. But in America playing football is considered to be sin while it is allowed to travel on the Sabbath, which in turn is a sin in Africa, and so on.

Not

long

ago

I

heard

about

certain

Brazilian
with their

Adventists
pastor

together

watched the world cup final match in 1994 on Sabbath in the church. So someone asked their pastor, “How can you do it on Sabbath?” To which question the pastor answered, “Brother, you have to know that we don’t just watch the match,

What was the reason God wanted Israel to rest on Sabbath? Because He gave them freedom from the slavery. And it is exactly the same reason God wants today to rest on Sabbath. He says to you and me:

but we watch it in order

us

to learn how to work as a team.
want to learn the team spirit…”

We

Deuteronomy 5:15, God himself gives the reason why He wants us to rest on
In Sabbath: NIV

15 Remember (The Hebrew word “zakar” translated here as “remember” literally means to engrave in the memory and seal. So it means that what God wants to
tell us now concerning the Sabbath is extremely important.)

“Remember (or, engrave in your memory and seal it) that you were condemned to death slave of sin (because Egypt in the Bible is the symbol of sin), and that the Lord your God brought you out of that slavery of sin and death with a mighty hand and an outstretched on the cross arm. Therefore (this is the reason) the Lord your God has commanded you to observe the Sabbath day.”
God gave us Sabbath that we may remember that in Jesus He gave us freedom from slavery of sin and death.

Remember (or, engrave in your memory and seal it) that you were slaves in Egypt and that the Lord your God brought you out of there with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm. Therefore the Lord your God has commanded you to observe the Sabbath day.

Knowing the true meaning of the Sabbath we can now easily understand why Jesus loved

setting sinners free
Sunday? No. On Sabbath.

from the slavery of sin and death especially on what day?

years, be set free on the Sabbath day?" 2x
Why did Jesus say that the that woman should be
set free from Satan’s slavery especially on the Sabbath day ? - Because the Sabbath is the memorial of

For example, in the 13

th

Luke

chapter of the gospel of
enslaved by

we read about a woman who had been

Satan for eighteen years. In verse

the gospel of freedom.

12 we read that: “When Jesus saw her, he called her forward and said to her, "Woman, you are set free from your infirmity (slavery)."

But because Jesus set her free on Sabbath the hypocritical Jews condemned Him. What did He answer them?

Well, I think it’s time to close, so let me read for you now the final quotation, which is derived from my favorite commentary to the book of Hebrews written also by Jack Sequeira:

Luke 13: 15 - 16 (NIV):

The Lord answered, "You hypocrites! Doesn't each of you on the Sabbath untie his ox or donkey from the stall and lead it out to give it water? Then should not this woman, a daughter of Abraham, whom Satan has kept bound for eighteen long

“We must never separate the Sabbath from Christ our Righteousness, because it is the Lord of the Sabbath that makes the day important. Without the Lord of the day, the day itself becomes meaningless. There are today many sincere Christians who are fully resting in Christ but are Sunday keepers. They

keep the wrong day for the right reason. Likewise, there are many sincere Sabbath keepers who think their Sabbath keeping will save them. They are keeping the right day for the wrong reason. Both need to be corrected by the Holy Spirit, who is to lead us into all truth. Before the second coming of Jesus all who come under the banner of Christ will finally worship the Lord of the Sabbath and their Sabbath keeping will be the outward sign or the seal of the righteousness they have already received by faith. In contrast, Sunday as the Mark of the Beast will represent human attempts to earn the salvation by works. In this way accepting Sunday and deliberate rejecting the Sabbath will become an outward expression of rejecting the salvation by faith in Jesus.”

“We had twenty two Adventist students at one of the universities in Ethiopia. And those students were told that they would have to have an exam in zoology on the Sabbath. So, because of that they asked me if I would speak to the zoology professor on their behalf. The problem was that the zoology professor was known as a very tough, unyielding and stubborn German teacher. So I said to those students, ‘Before I go and speak to him I want to ask you a question: If he will not agree to postpone your exam will you take the exam on Sabbath? If you say “Yes” I’m not going to speak to him for you. I will go to him only if you give me your word that you will not take the exam even if he won’t agree to change the date of your exam. Now, in Africa only the cream of the crop goes to university. So any person who gives up university is regarded in Africa as

the greatest fool in the world. So because of this they said, “Boy, this is tough.” And they decided to spend three days in fasting and prayer. After those three days only five of them came back to me. Out of those twenty-two young Adventist students only five said to me, “We are willing to deprive ourselves of a university education but we will not let our Lord down.” The rest said, “It is too much of a sacrifice.” So I went to the professor for those five students. I tried to explain to him why they can’t have the exam on the Sabbath, but he stopped me and said, “You don’t need to explain. I come from Damstaad where we have lots of Adventists. I know your policy. They can have the exam on Sunday. No trouble at all.” I don’t know what was behind the professor but all those five students passed with flying colors. The others failed. Whether the professor did it

deliberately or not I don’t know, but he never penalized those five who decided to not brake the fourth commandment regardless the consequences. And later this Sunday keeping professor said to me, “I wish we had students that were as loyal to Christ as these five.”
Well, we know that soon we are going to face the same test. The devil will do his best to force us to stop keeping the Sabbath because he hates the truth which is hidden in the Sabbath.

Who among us will pass the great final test? The answer is found in Revelation 7:13-17
(NASU):

13 Then one of the elders answered, saying to me, "These who are clothed in the white robes, who are they, and where have they come from?"

14 I said to him, "My lord, you know." And he said to me, "These are the ones who come out of the great tribulation, and they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. 15 "For this reason, they are before the throne of God... 17 The Lamb will be their shepherd, and will guide them to springs of the water of life; and God will wipe every tear from their eyes."
Who will pass the final great persecution and the Sabbath test?
Only those “who are clothed in the white robes (of Christ righteousness) and

have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb”. Only those who at last ceased from their own works and accepted God’s perfect and finished salvation of which Sabbath is the memorial.
Amen.

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