Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy.

I asked a Christian poster to this site if he kept the Sabbath holy or if he profaned the Sabbath by going shopping, or perhaps eating at McDonalds after church, etc.

Here’s what he said:

First and fourth commandments say the same thing. The NT doesn't mention the fourth Commandment to keep because Jesus is that Commandment. He mentions to keep the other nine but that one was replaced by the New Covenant in Christ.

You are missing out on some very important teachings that is wonderful let me explain a bit. Lets take the Sabbath in Genesis 2:2-3 "And God had finished on the seventh day his work which he had made; and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had made. And God blessed the seventh day, and hallowed it, because that on it he rested from all his work which God had created in making it."

He rested, not because he was tired but that the work was complete. Now we have a completion in Jesus and we are in His rest.

Hebrews 4:1 "Let us therefore fear, lest, a promise being left us of entering into his rest, any of you should seem to come short of it."

Hebrews 4:9-11 "There remaineth therefore a rest to the people of God. For he that is entered into his rest, he also hath ceased from his own works, as God did from his. Let us labour therefore to enter into that rest, lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief."

Jesus IS the Sabbath, the completion, not a Saturday or Sunday. We are complete in Christ, nothing more is required for salvation it ends in Christ. Not a man made building and established hierarchy.

Are you ready to repent now? Not yet? OK maybe this will help. Basic hermeneutics have some steps to understand the Bible:

Step One: Grasp the text in their town. What did the text say to the original audience?

Step Two: Measure the width of the river to cross. What are the differences between the biblical audience and us? (time, culture, language, situation, covenant.)

Step Three: Cross the principlizing bridge. What is the theological principle in this text?

Step Four: Does the New Testament change our understanding of an OT text?

Step Five: Grasp the text in our town. How should the individual Christian apply the theological principles in our lives today?

Things to take in account is The Inductive Method, Authorial Intent, and the most important a Grammatical Historical Method of Interpretation: To determine exactly what the author intended and how the original audience would have understood it.

Just to be clear you are using an eisegesis, and Reader-response method.

From my blog: "I use an Exegesis method of interpretation instead of an eisegesis method. Does this mean that eisegesis thinking is wrong, I would say yes because it is a capricious attitude. It may even be breaking the 2nd Commandment and making a god to suite yourself."

Mr. Marvin's blog:

Basically, if I am reading him correctly, Mr. Marvin is telling me I am not applying the correct interpretation (Dan Marvin’s interpretation) to the Bible. It seemed clear to me that one of the Ten Commandments said to keep the Sabbath Day holy, but Mr. Marvin sees my obvious reading of the text as too simplistic.

Now, I readily admit that I don’t believe the Bible, and I think that adhering to archaic religious laws like this would be ridiculous, but regardless, is Mr. Marvin correct? Is keeping the Sabbath now passé for the Christian? And if so, I wonder why it is still included in the giant granite Ten Commandment statues all around the USA.

This is the interesting thing about Christianity. Modern Christians want to have a nice big Cracker Barrel lunch after church, and if buying and selling on the Sabbath is a no-no, then how’s a good churchman to eat?

Well, what do other “True Christians™” have to say about the matter?

From Let Us Reason Ministries:

“And so every time you remember the Sabbath day you are honoring the true God. That's why, if this commandment had always been kept, there would be no atheist, agnostic, idolater, or skeptic.” (prophecy seminar The Seventh day Sabbath true worship lesson 10 Leo Schreven) Really! This didn’t happen when all of Israel had kept it, even as a nation under God. While it may be true to keep the Sabbath honors God, it is not the only day or way to do so. Nor is it THE way to do so.

“He created this day in honor of himself as being the creator of all things. And you can read all through the bible God wants us to remember it.”

From the Second Presbyterian Church:

We know from the gospel accounts that Jesus kept the Sabbath day, that on the Sabbath day he went to the synagogue. The gospel accounts say that this was his custom. "As was his custom," he would go to the synagogue and there would sing God’s praise in the Psalms, hear the word read and proclaimed, just as it is done today. So both our scripture readings are about the Sabbath. The one that we now have in Deuteronomy 5 is explicitly about the Sabbath day, but the first reading, read just a moment or two ago from Matthew 11 is also, though implicitly, about the Sabbath day. That is, the word Sabbath is not mentioned, but the word "rest" is central to the text. Remember Jesus says, "Come to me all you who labor and who are heavy-laden and I will give you rest" – I will give you what the Sabbath commands and promises; rest, eternal rest, even heavenly rest . . . .

"Rest" is what the Sabbath day commandment is about, both literally and spiritually. We know that the Jewish people reflected on the fourth commandment, not just in its literal sense ("resting" on one day of the week) but they also thought about what it meant in its deepest level…

From John PipersDesiring God website:

"Keep it holy," means set it aside from all other days as special. Specifically, as verse 10 says, keep it "to the Lord," or "for the Lord." In other words, the rest is not to be aimless rest, but God-centered rest. Attention is to be directed to God in a way that is more concentrated and steady than on ordinary days. Keep the day holy by keeping the focus on the holy God.

From USA Today:

For all the attention paid this past year to public displays of the Ten Commandments, you'd think people would spend as much energy trying to follow them.

When it comes to the Fourth Commandment — "Remember the Sabbath Day" — that's not the case. And pastors like me, far from being role models, are among the worst offenders. After all, we work every Sunday.


The Bible is profoundly clear (Colossians 2:16) in forbidding any Christian from judging another Christian in regard to keeping the Sabbath (many Christians, however, attempt to twist this scripture into justifying their NOT keeping the Sabbath), or in meat (and I'll tell ya, as both a Sabbath keeper and a vegetarian, I have been judged harshly by "Christians" for both these Biblical concepts -- remember, not everyone who claims to be of God, is of God), or in drink (some people have given up the Sabbath, but oddly, not the eating and the drinking, another thought to ponder).

From the Geneva Study Bible

Remember the sabbath day, {g} to keep it holy.

(g) Which is by meditating the spiritual rest, by hearing God's word, and resting from worldly labours.
From John Wesley's Notes:

Ex. 20:8 The fourth commandment concerns the time of worship; God is to be served and honoured daily; but one day in seven is to be particularly dedicated to his honour, and spent in his service. Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy; in it thou shalt do no manner of work - It is taken for granted that the sabbath was instituted before. We read of God's blessing and sanctifying a seventh day from the beginning, Gen 2:3, so that this was not the enacting of a new law, but the reviving of an old law. 1st. They are told what is the day, they must observe, a seventh after six days labour, whether this was the seventh by computation from the first seventh, or from the day of their coming out of Egypt, or both, is not certain. A late pious Writer seems to prove, That the sabbath was changed, when Israel came out of Egypt; which change continued till our Lord rose again: But that then the Original Sabbath was restored. And he makes it highly probable, at least, That the sabbath we observe, is the seventh day from the creation. 2dly, How it must be observed; As a day of rest; they were to do no manner of work on this day, in their worldly business. As a holy day, set apart to the honour of the holy God, and to be spent in holy exercises. God, by his blessing it, had made it holy; they, by solemn blessing him, must keep it holy, and not alienate it to any other purpose than that for which the difference between it and other days was instituted. 3dly, Who must observe it? Thou and thy son and thy daughter - The wife is not mentioned, because she is supposed to be one with the husband, and present with him, and if he sanctify the sabbath, it is taken for granted she will join with him; but the rest of the family is instanced in it, children and servants must keep it according to their age and capacity. In this, as in other instances of religion, it is expected that masters of families should take care, not only to serve the Lord themselves, but that their houses also should serve him. Even the proselyted strangers must observe a difference between this day and other days, which, if it laid some restraint upon them then, yet proved a happy indication of God's gracious design, to bring the Gentiles into the church. By the sanctification of the sabbath, the Jews declared that they worshipped the God that made the world, and so distinguished themselves from all other nations, who worshipped gods which they themselves made. God has given us an example of rest after six days work; he rested the seventh day - Took a complacency in himself, and rejoiced in the work of his hand, to teach us on that day, to take a complacency in him, and to give him the glory of his works. The sabbath begun in the finishing of the work of creation; so will the everlasting sabbath in the finishing of the work of providence and redemption; and we observe the weekly sabbath in expectation of that, as well as in remembrance of the former, in both conforming ourselves to him we worship. He hath himself blessed the sabbath day and sanctified it. He hath put an honour upon it; it is holy to the Lord, and honourable; and he hath put blessings into it which he hath encouraged us to expect from him in the religious observation of that day. Let us not profane, dishonour, and level that with common time, which God's blessing hath thus dignified and distinguished.

From Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary:

Ex. 20:3-11 The form of the fourth commandment, Remember, shows that it was not now first given, but was known by the people before. One day in seven is to be kept holy. Six days are allotted to worldly business, but not so as to neglect the service of God, and the care of our souls. On those days we must do all our work, and leave none to be done on the sabbath day. Christ allowed works of necessity, charity, and piety; for the sabbath was made for man, and not man for the sabbath, Mr 2:27; but all works of luxury, vanity, or self-indulgence in any form, are forbidden. Trading, paying wages, settling accounts, writing letters of business, worldly studies, trifling visits, journeys, or light conversation, are not keeping this day holy to the Lord. Sloth and indolence may be a carnal, but not a holy rest. The sabbath of the Lord should be a day of rest from worldly labour, and a rest in the service of God. The advantages from the due keeping of this holy day, were it only to the health and happiness of mankind, with the time it affords for taking care of the soul, show the excellency of this commandment. The day is blessed; men are blessed by it, and in it. The blessing and direction to keep holy are not limited to the seventh day, but are spoken of the sabbath day.

From the Swedenborg Chruch:

It must be evident to all that disregard for the Sabbath is a great and growing evil in our community. The day comes, but not the spiritual rest that belongs to it. Secular labor that is not religious or sacred is to a great extent stopped, but with far too many people, there is no recognition of anything high and holy in its place. Too often, the thoughts are not raised above the level of common everyday life, and the Sabbath is treated as an occasion for nothing but physical relaxation. Those who have a better knowledge of what the Sabbath was designed to be should resist this increasing tendency, and do what they can to impress upon the mind the principles contained in this commandment.

From Charles Spurgeon’s catechism:

51 Q How is the Sabbath to be sanctified?

A The Sabbath is to be sanctified by a holy resting all that
day, even from such worldly employments and recreations as
are lawful on other days,

# Le 23:3

and spending the whole time in the public and private
exercises of God's worship,

# Ps 92:1,2 Isa 58:13,14

except so much as is taken up in the works of necessity and

# Mt 12:11,12

From the Westminster Confession of Faith:

VIII. This Sabbath is then kept holy unto the Lord, when men, after a due preparing of their hearts, and ordering of their common affairs beforehand, do not only observe an holy rest, all the day, from their own works, words, and thoughts about their worldly employments and recreations, but also are taken up, the whole time, in the public and private exercises of His worship, and in the duties of necessity and mercy.

It seems clear to me that Mr. Marvin’s interpretation regarding the Sabbath differs significantly from quite a number of respectable Christian leaders. I wonder what gives Mr. Marvin the confidence to easily dismiss this wealth of Christian wisdom, not to mention a clear command written by the hand of his personal god?

Of course my point here is not to criticize or condemn Mr. Marvin. I'm sure he's a sincere man. I just believe he's terribly deluded by his religion.

Now, in all fairness, there are plenty of Christians out there who agree wholly or in part with Mr. Marvin. However, it seems plain from the various quotes above that many do not agree with Mr. Marvin on this issue.

This kind of discussion in Christianity (Sabbath vs. no-Sabbath) is part of what helped me escape the mind-snare of the Christ cult. When I devoted myself to seeking "the truth" and tallied up the contradictory teachings on this topic as well as so many others, I had an epiphany of sorts. I realized that for there to be so many Christians in such stark disagreement over basic things like one of the Ten Commandments, that the bold promise that the Holy Ghost would lead me or any Christian into "all truth" was woefully empty. I began, after months of heart-wrenching study and prayer, to finally understand that Christianity had been mutating with the times, just like every other man made religion. In essence, so-called Biblical absolutes were merely baptized situational ethics.

Keeping the Sabbath is inconvenient. Therefore, when the Bible says “Keep the Sabbath holy,” it has in some circles been inventively reinterpreted to mean “We no longer have to keep the Sabbath holy.”

And if you disagree with either side of the coin, then your exegesis is flawed.

Isn't that nice?

What do you think?

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