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(House of Study)


THE SABBATH



Did you know that, by rejecting the seventh-day Sabbath, which was established and blessed by YHVH, you are telling Him that you decline His invitation to enter into His rest?

"And on the seventh day Elohim completed His work which He had done, and He rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had made. And Elohim blessed the seventh day and set it apart, because on it He rested from all His work which Elohim in creating had made." [Genesis 2:2-3]

The definition of rest in these two verses is to repose, i.e. desist from exertion. It sounds so simple, doesn't it? But is that all there is to it?

YHVH Elohim did desist from His work, but in the word repose are encompassed all the blessings He put on the seventh day for those who obey and keep it, for in the word repose you find peace of mind; freedom from worry or troubles; calm or ease of manner; composure; calm; tranquility and peace. Most significantly, it means to place (trust, confidence, etc. in someone). Isn't that appropriate? For when we guard and keep His Sabbath, it is a sign that we are putting our trust and confidence in YHVH Elohim.

" 'And the children of Israel shall guard the Sabbath, to observe the Sabbath throughout their generations as AN EVERLASTING COVENANT. Between Me and the children of Israel IT IS A SIGN FOREVER. For in six days YHVH made the heavens and the earth, and on the seventh day He rested and was refreshed.' And when He had ended speaking with him on Mount Sinai, He gave Moses two tablets of the Witness, tablets of stone, written with the finger of Elohim." [Exodus 31:16-18]

Note that the Sabbath is A COVENANT. Please consider this question carefully: Is there any way man can change a covenant written by the finger of Elohim, except by breaking it? Then, why is it that most Christian leaders teach their followers that they are bound by the Ten Commandments, with one glaring exception -- the Sabbath of Elohim?

What are they really teaching their flock? To teach them to break a command in the covenant of Elohim is to teach them lawlessness! So, how can they presume to call YHVH Elohim Father when they refuse to enter into His covenant, preferring to do what is right in their own eyes?

"Since then it remains for some to enter into it, and those who formerly received the Good News did not enter in because of disobedience, He again defines a certain day, 'Today,' saying through David so much later, as it has been said, 'Today, if you hear His voice, do not harden your hearts.' For if Joshua had given them rest, He would not have spoken of another day after that. So there remains a Sabbath-keeping day of rest for the people of Elohim. For the one, having entered into His rest, has himself also rested from his works, as Elohim (rested) from His own. Let us therefore do our utmost to enter into that rest, lest anyone fall after the same example of disobedience."[Hebrews 4:6-11]

"Another day after that" is referring to the millennium kingdom, the 1,000 year-reign on earth; and the Sabbath Day (from sundown Friday until sundown on Saturday) is a preview of living in that kingdom.

"Because of this, I was angry with that generation and said, 'They always go astray in heart; and they did not know My ways; so I swore in My wrath, they shall not enter into My rest.' " [Hebrews 3:10-11; Psalm 95:11] This particular word rest means abode in both Greek and Hebrew; so, when using the definition in lieu of the word rest, YHVH is saying: ". . .They shall not enter into My abode."

For further clarification, let's look at the definition of abode: 1. a staying in a place; sojourn. 2. a place where one lives or stays; home; house; residence. Once more, by putting the definition in place, YHVH is saying about the disobedient ones, ". . .They shall not enter into the place where I live.

In the place where YHVH Elohim will live during the millennium, and where Y'hoshua will rule with a rod of iron, there will be only three groups of people: 1. The obedient Bride, who was caught away at the beginning of the Tribulation, and who returned to earth with Y'hoshua; 2. The martyred set-apart ones, who were beheaded because they became obedient believers during the Tribulation; and 3. Those who became obedient believers during the Tribulation, but managed to stay alive to the end.

Salvation does not depend upon your obedience, but your obedience is the evidence that you have received salvation through the Messiah's sacrifice. "And by this we know that we have known Him, if we keep His commands. The (one) saying, I have known Him, and not keeping His commands is a liar, and the truth is not in that one. But whoever keeps His Word, truly in this one the love of Elohim has been perfected. By this we know that we are in Him. The (one) claiming to remain in Him ought so to walk himself as that (One) walked. Brothers, I do not write a new commandment to you, but an old commandment which you had from (the) beginning. The old commandment is the Word which you heard from the beginning." [1 John 2:3-7]

The Sabbath was established in the beginning. The children of Israel were instructed to keep it during their forty years in the wilderness. And to remember the Sabbath was written by the finger of YHVH Elohim. To transgress the Torah is to break any of the commands of Elohim; and to transgress the Torah is sin. Actually, sin is the sentence you have accepted when you decline to follow the instructions for life given by YHVH Elohim, for sin means to miss the mark and so not share in the prize. And what is the prize? To live forever in the place where Elohim lives.

1 John 2:7 is worth repeating once more: "Brothers, I do not write a new commandment to you, but an old commandment which you had from (the) beginning. The old commandment is the Word which you heard from the beginning."

What Word is John speaking about? The written Word, the Torah, the commandments of Elohim, given to His children, through Moses, to teach them how to obtain life. What is that life? "Then I said, 'Lo, I come, in the roll of the Book (it is) written of Me; I delight to do Your will, My Elohim; and Your Law (Torah) (is) within My inmost (soul).' " [Psalm 40:7-8]

Who is that life? "For if you were believing Moses, you would then believe Me; for that one wrote concerning Me. But if you do not believe his writings (the Torah), how will you believe My Words?" [John 5:46-47]

Further:"In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with Elohim, and the Word was Elohim. And the Word became flesh and tabernacled among us." [John 1:1, 14a]

Y'hoshua is the Messiah, the Torah made flesh. If you disregard or change even the most minute part of Elohim's instructions, have you not fashioned the Messiah into someone different from the Messiah who walked upon this earth two-thousand years ago -- He who never broke a single commandment? If you call the first day of the week your sabbath, but He celebrated the Sabbath commanded by His Father, are you not worshipping a different Messiah?

Elohim's Sabbath is a precious gift. "If you do turn back your foot from the Sabbath, from doing your pleasure on My set-apart day, and shall call the Sabbath a delight, the set-apart (day) of YHVH honorable, and shall honor Him, not doing your own ways, nor finding your own pleasure, nor speaking your own words, then you shall delight yourself in YHVH. And I shall cause you to ride on the heights of the earth, and feed you with the inheritance of Jacob your father. For the mouth of YHVH has spoken!" [Isaiah 58:13-14]

And what is the inheritance promised to those who delight themselves in the Sabbath? " 'No weapon formed against you shall prosper, and every tongue which rises against you in judgment you shall condemn. This is the inheritance of the servants of YHVH, and their righteousness (is) from Me, ' declares YHVH."

Whether you have DNA from one of the tribes of the house of Israel or the house of Judah, or whether you have been adopted into the family, all share in the blessings that come from obedience.

To sum up the importance of obedience, in general, and the Sabbath, in particular, please read the following prophecy from Isaiah 56:1-8, "Thus said YHVH, 'Keep justice and do righteousness, for near is My deliverance to come, and My righteousness to be revealed. Blessed is the man who does this, and the son of man who does this, and the son of man who lays hold on it, guarding the Sabbath lest he defile it, and guarding his hand from doing any evil. And let not the son of the foreigner who has joined himself to YHVH speak, saying 'YHVH has certainly separated me from His people,' nor let the eunuch say, 'Look I am a dry tree.' For thus said YHVH, 'To the eunuchs who guard My Sabbaths, and have chosen what pleases Me, and hold fast to My covenant: to them I shall give in My house and within My walls a place and a name better than that of sons and daughters -- I give them an everlasting name that is not cut off. Also the sons of the foreigner who join themselves to YHVH, to serve Him, and to love the Name of YHVH, to be His servants, all who guard the Sabbath, and not defile it, and hold fast to My covenant -- them I shall bring to My set-apart mountain, and let them rejoice in My house of prayer. Their burnt offerings and their sacrifices are accepted on My altar, for My house is called a house of prayer for all the peoples.' Adoni YHVH, who gathers the outcasts of Israel, declares, 'I gather still (others) to him besides those who are gathered to him.' "

"And He (the Messiah) said to them, 'The Sabbath came into being for man's sake, not man for the Sabbath's sake.' " [Mark 2:27]

The Sabbath is a covenant, a sign, and an intermission from our labors. It brings peace, freedom, calm, and tranquility. Most importantly, it is a picture of the future home for those who have received salvation through the Messiah Y'hoshua and are obedient to the commandments of YHVH Elohim. Please do not be guilty of regarding it as having no value.

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Psalm 122:6,7
Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: May they prosper who love you.
May peace be within your walls, and prosperity within your palaces.