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Friday, September 23, 2011

THE ETERNAL SABBATH


 Mordecai and Catherine Uka Dike
This article can be reproduced or quoted in whole or in part, in print or electronically, under the conditions that prominent credit is given to the author and that the article not be reproduced for commercial purposes. The word of God is free, freely you receive and freely you must give (Matthew 10:8).

INTRODUCTION
One of the present controversies among Christians is the issue of the Sabbath. The doctrine of the Trinity separated the Christians into two different groups, which are the oneness, and three in one Christians. The Sabbath divided Christians into three different groups, the Sundayterians Christians which includes all Christians who believe that God’s holy day should be observed on Sundays instead of Saturdays and the Daily Sabbath Christians, this group insists that the New Testament Christians are no longer under the Law of Moses, therefore keeping the Jewish seventh day Sabbath is a thing of past, they emphasize that every day should be kept holy for God and the Sabbaterian Christians who insist that Christians are obligated to observe the Old Testament Sabbath. Most of the Sabbaterian sect believe that worshiping God on Sundays is the mark of the beast (Ellen G. White, Great Controversy, Vol. 4, page 281). The Sabbaterians also claim that Sunday was named after the “sun god” stating that it was the day when the Romans worship the sun god, but such claim doesn’t  make sense because Saturday which they ascribe as the Lord’s Day, was also named after the Roman god “Saturn or Satan” (“Saturn” the shining one), which some believed to have a spiritual connection with a star called Thuban”  in Arabic meaning “snake”,  Thuban is the same as theAlpha Draconis” which most people worship as the snake goddess. In the Roman Empire ("Saturn's Day") was a day of Saturn’s worship. It is very important for us to know that the days of the week are named after the planets and pagan gods! Monday means “day of the moon” or the day of moon worship, derived from the Anglo-Saxon monandaeg. Tuesday is derived from Tiu’s day; In Greek it is called hemera Areos” "day of Ares" which is the same as “Twia” the ancient German god of war and the sky. Wednesday is derived from Woden's day; Woden is the chief Anglo-Saxon god. In Latin it is dies Mercurii "day of Mercury", and in Ancient Greek hemera Hermu "day of Hermes", Thursday “Thor's day is called after the Norse god of thunder and Friday “Freya's dayFreya or Fria is the Teutonic goddess of love, beauty, and fruitfulness. None of these Christian groups, including the Sundayterians, Sabbaterians and daily Sabbaterians have been able to explain properly what Sabbath is in the New Testament, they are all just making senseless theological debates.
It is obvious that we Christians oftentimes leave authentic matters and dabble in unfruitful issues that don’t add virtue to our spiritual life such as whether Christians should observe the Jewish Sabbath on Saturday or worship on Sunday. This matter is meaningless to debate, because we have more important issues that we should concern ourselves with, and one of them is not whether christians should be keeping Judaic Sabbath or not. In this article, I actually want to share with you what the true Sabbath is under the new covenant. I am positive that understanding what Sabbath means will help us to achieve a new level of holiness and purity in Christ. We need not join ourselves with the blind religious people to pursue after the shadow instead of the reality. I urge you to take your time and read this material with an open heart, when you get the revelation of the Sabbath clear, stay focused and pursue it daily with prayer and meditation, you will then see the level of separation and purity you will attain towards God. Always keep in mind that we all know in part! And we prophesy in part; No one has known it all (1Corinthians13:9).

MYSTERY OF THE AGES

Paul the apostle urged Timothy to study in order to shew himself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth (2Timothy2:15). If someone does not have an accurate revelation of the ages, dispensation, administration or arrangements in the history of God’s dealings with man, that person will not be able to divide the word of God correctly. Most present day ministers have no idea of the ages, and that is why they are ignorantly fighting against God, by trying to bring the Christians back to the shadow. The word church “called out people” suggests that we are in divine journey; we represent the spiritual Hebrews, which indicate “people in a constant migration.” God has set a heavenly race before us, which can be referred to as a sacred voyage. To be in a journey means that we are traveling from one place to another, our spiritual movement covers three different stages, also known as ages“That which was, which is and which is to come (Revelation 1:4, 8), Jesus Christ is the same Yesterday, Today and Forever (Hebrew13:8). These scriptures teach us that there are three major ages: the past, the present and the future age. The 1st age is called the beginning also known as the Alpha Age or eternity spiritual, the 2nd is a period called the mortal age which is also known as the age of visibility or manifestation period. The third is called the perfect “Omega” age or the immortal age. We are moving from the alpha age going up to the omega age, or it can be said that our spiritual movement started from the eternity spiritual and we are heading to immortality reality. Three words from the book of Genesis chapters 1 and 2 explain this better:
·         CREATE
·         FORM
·         MAKE

CREATION (THE ETERNITY)

Genesis chapter 1verses1-2 read, “In the beginning, God created the heaven and the earth; and the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep and the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters”. Due to the interpretation of the words “form and void” in Hebrew “tohu and tohu” meaning “waste and desolate” Many theologians believe that the beginning represents the original angelic world, which became chaotic after the sin of Lucifer, and others believe that the beginning began from the manifestation week of all creation. The truth is that the Beginning is far beyond theological claims, The Beginning was the age of creation; a time when nothing existed besides God, only He was and He then created everything spiritually within Him…

According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love (Ephesians1:4).

Just as a baby is conceived in the womb and stays for 9 months before introduction to the physical world, so was all creation created in God’s mind, which to Him was a reality. All that He created spiritually in His mind was visible to Him; God carried us in His womb first before bringing us into the physical form. Both the pre-Adamic and Adamic world was first created in the beginning in God. No one (except through prophetic revelation) can tell how many thousand, million, billion or trillion years we all spiritually spent in God before our time of physical manifestation. Because we started in Him, God knew every creature by name even before Adam gave them names. Adam was a prophet who named every creature according to God’s own heart. There is nothing new in God’s sight; everything that is happening right now has already taken place in the beginning, which is why He said to prophet Jeremiah…

Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations. (Jeremiah 1:5)

If you can think deeper, you will understand that Satan had already sinned against God before coming to tempt Eve in the Garden of Eden. Jesus teaches us that Satan sinned right from the beginning (1John3:8). Before Lucifer was formed and placed in the first celestial Eden which existed before the Adamic Eden (Ezekiel 28:13-15), God already knew that he would rebel against His kingdom, for that, God provided the Lamb, His son Jesus Christ who was slain before the foundation of the world as the perfect atonement for sin (Revelation 13:8). Nothing surprises God, because He knows everything, He is the Almighty, the creator of all things, He declares the end from the beginning, nothing is new in the sight of the Almighty! To God everything is completed because He reigns in eternity where there is no yesterday or tomorrow; a realm in the spirit where life is still and were we all existed in the beginning in Him(Ecclesiastes 1:9-11, Isaiah46:10).

FORMATION (THE MORTAL AGE)

After the age of creation God brought us to the period of formation, which is the manifestation time. Before an inventor is able to bring anything into physical reality, he must first create the image of what he is trying to manufacture in his mind and haven gotten a clear picture of what he wants to invent. He will then develop it bringing it out so that it can be seen and felt; for a revelation is not a complete truth until it becomes a physical reality. Genesis chapter 1 gives an account of the Creation of Man while chapter 2 recorded the Formation of Man…in verse 27 of chapter 1 it reads; So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them (Genesis1:27). Genesis 2:7 reads, And the LORD God FORMED man of the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul (Genesis2:7). In summary, the formation age, (which is also known as the Mortal age), is when God decided to bring out everything that He had created into physical reality, this period started from the manifestation of the pre-Adamic Eden (Ezekiel 28:13-15) and will continue until all things are completely perfected in Christ. 

MAKING (DAILY GROWTH TAWARDS IMMORTALITY)

And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth (Genesis1: 26).

The above scripture was decreed from eternity beginning. We must understand that the making is happening gradually, God started by creating us in His mind, after Creation, He formed us, and from Formation He is taking us through the process of perfection unto completion. After a potter forms a pot with clay, he will continue the process of breaking and remolding until he forms his masterpiece (Jeremiah 18:4-6). We are still clay in the potter’s hand, God hasn’t finished us. He is working to bring everything that He has created and formed into a complete state of permanent perfection. It is true that God created man in His own image but man was formed in the mortal body while God is immortal; God purposed the mortal man to be conformed fully to his own image to share with Him in a state of permanent perfection and immortality of the outward man which is why He says Let us make man in our image, after our likeness. The first man “Adam” who was “earthly” was not perfect like God, if so he could not have fallen. Because God exists in the realm of permanent perfection He cannot sin which is why the second “heavenly” Adam who was Jesus Christ could not sin because the fullness of God dwelt in Him bodily on earth (Colossian 2:9). The law of “do and do not” exists in the realm of imperfection to test the obedience of man. Adam was formed into a state of sinless perfection, which is very different from permanent perfection.  The state of permanent perfection is a dimension where it is impossible to sin. God wanted Adam to achieve complete immortality with the sinless nature, which was why when man fell, God stopped them from eating of the tree of life in order for them not to be immortalized with a sin nature and remain like Satan. The tree of life was originally planted in the garden to bring full immortalization to the mortal man, but man would have to prove his obedience to God before having access to it. Jesus says….

He that hath an ear let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; to him that overcometh will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God. (Revelation 2:7)

The command that God gave to man was to "Be fruitful, increase in number fill the earth, and subdue it. These divine commands are spiritual, and are beyond physical reproduction. Apart from giving birth biologically, to be fruitful means to manifest the complete nature and character of God or to reach a dimension in God where the fruits of the spirit (Galanthians5:22) will manifest in one’s life and remain permanent. To increase in number means to raise (multiply) sons of God in the world. To fill the earth means to let the nature of God (“His Breath” which He imparted in the inward part of man) dominate the outward man so that that which is mortal (the earth or dust) will be transformed and clothed with immortality. Jesus says, “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled ( Matthew 5:6)”, which means that those who seek for a complete divine nature of God both inwardly and outwardly will be filled with all the fruits of the spirit and will be clothed with an imperishable celestial body. To subdue the earth means to eternally conquer and keep our flesh under subjection and not to allow it to have control over us. As mentioned earlier, had it been that the first Adam existed in the complete realm of permanent perfection and immortality like God, he could have never fallen because it is impossible for God to sin, but the journey was set before Adam to reach immortality of the total man through daily obedience to the word of God. It is certain that the work was spiritually completed in the beginning on the seventh day, but we have to understand what seven day spiritually stands for in this mortal realm.

THE SEVENTH DAY

Thus the heavens and the earth were finished, and all the host of them. And on the seventh day God ended 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 sanctified it: because that in it he had rested from all his work which God created and made (Genesis2:1-2).

Since God reigns from eternity; a realm in the spirit where there is no yesterday or tomorrow, He doesn’t operate with calendar days as we do…

For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD (Isaiah55:8).

God’s ways are totally different from our ways because He hath immortality and lives in unapproachable light, which no one has seen or can see (1Timothy6:16).Meanwhile, we humans exist in mortality sphere. God does things according to His own special divine timing; He has a good sense of spiritual timing. Whatever God has programmed from the eternity must come to pass on earth accurately at the fullness of time not according to man’s calculating of dates and time...

But when the fullness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law (Galatians4:4).
That in the dispensation of the fullness of times he might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth; even in him(Ephesians1:10).

"The fullness of the time" entails the totality of a period of time, with the insinuation of proper completion. Revelation is needed to understand God’s way of counting days, weeks, months and years and time. Prophetic days and timing are totally different from our calendar days, that is why people always fail when they try to predict dates on which Christ will return, or the end of the world. Moses asked the Lord to teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom (Psalm90:12). The word of God says that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day (2Peter3:8, Psalm90:4). Now, if one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day, that means that we can take the seven days, or the one week of creation recorded in Genesis as seven thousand years, and the seven thousand years will represent the seven different ages which exist within the mortal age, otherwise known as seven dispensations; which stands for different stages or periods of time in which man is tested in respect of obedience to some specific revelation of the eternal will of God.

THE SEVEN AGES IN THE MORTAL AGE

As afore mentioned, the seven dispensations or ages exist inside the Mortal age, in this mortal age God is taking us through the process of perfection unto completion. In other words, God is gradually making (spiritually developing) us to conform fully to His own image and likeness. As we started from the beginning, we must pass through mortality to reach immortality. This is why scripture teaches us that this world is not our home, we are all strangers and pilgrimage on earth (1 Peter 2:11). Our spiritual movement from the mortal to Immortality can be compare to a relay Marathon race. The psalmist says…

Blessed is the man whose strength is in thee; in whose heart are the ways of them. Who passing through the valley of Baca make it a well; the rain also filleth the pools. They go from strength to strength, every one of them in Zion appeareth before God (Psalm84:5-7).

We are growing from one level of revelation (faith) to another level in order to achieve complete perfection and immortality in God…

For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, the just shall live by faith (Romans1:17)

THE AGE OF INNOCENCY

This period began with the formation of Man and ended with the fall of man. (Genesis2:7, 3:24), In this time, Adam and Eve were innocent, ignorant of good and evil.  They were in a complete state of bliss, there was no problem of inward conflict with them; their spirit, soul and body were in perfect peace and harmony with the eternal will of God. Adam and Eve fellowshipped with the Lord God and obeyed Him by cultivating the garden and keeping away from the forbidden fruit in accordance with His divine counsel. There were no animal sacrifice needed because sin never entered the world, man originally had a nature, which was favorably oriented towards God. God came down to fellowship with Adam and Eve in the cool of the day (Genesis3:8) which indicates that Adam and Eve were highly spiritual; God appeared physically to fellowship with them in the Garden, these manifestations are called “theophanies,” appearances of God in human form (Genesis18:1). There was no religious temple or alter needed; the divine alter was in their hearts. Their spiritual garment was the Shekinah glory!

THE AGE OF CONSCIENCE

 This age came after the fall of man, and extended from the fall of man to the Noah’s flood (Genesis4-19, 6). In this period, people were governed by their conscience and restrained by the Holy Spirit. God did not give specific commands to men in this age; there were no "thou shalts" or "thou shalt not’s." It was in this era that the first sacrifice was made; Abel made the first animal sacrifice by revelation which extended till the time of Law. During the time of time of innocence, God physically fellowshipped with man, but this period is where men began to call upon the name of the Lord. The scripture reads, and to Seth, to him also there was born a son; and he called his name Enos then began men to call upon the name of the LORD (Genesis5). Seth understood very well that they were falling short of something; he knew that the life they were living was not a fulfilled life; he then began to seek for God. Seth born a son and named him “Enos” meaning mortal man; sick; despaired of; forgetful; the name “Enos” suggested that Seth saw the void and emptiness in man and began to call upon God for help. Seth led the people of his time to seek for God and depended on Him for their eternal perfection. In the original Hebrew, “to call” contains the emotion of “crying out” to God from the depth of our spirit and soul, from the center of who we are. Now, a good example of what it means to call upon the name of the Lord is when Ezra looks around at his people and is horrified, in all of their religious activities for God the hearts of the people were full of iniquity; they hadn’t surrendered themselves fully to God. Ezra tore his garment and robe then pulled some of the hair from his head and beard and sat down disgusted. He fell to his knees and stretched out his hands to the Lord his God; and said, ‘O my God, I am ashamed and embarrassed to lift up my face to you, my God, for our iniquities have risen above our heads and our guilt has grown even to the heavens. We are before you in our guilt, for no one can stand before you because of this’ (Ezra 9:3, 5, 6, 15). It was also in this period that Enoch was translated (Genesis5:24) and Noah found favor in the sight of the Lord (Genesis6, 7). There was no organized religious structure, people obeyed the Lord through their conscience, and every man was a spiritual priest head of his own family.

THE AGE OF HUMAN GOVERNMENT

This period began and extended from the flood to the call of Abraham (Genesis 8:20, 11). Inasmuch as man failed to obey God based on his conscience and restraint by the Holy Spirit during the second period, shortly after Noah and his family left the ark, God ordained capital punishment for murderers (Genesis 9:5-6),this was also the period that Nimrod became the first world dictator and developed the first Babylonian mystery religion(Genesis10,11).

THE AGE OF PROMISE

The time of promise which is the fourth period, was extended from the call of Abraham, and ended with the giving of the Mosaic Law (Genesis 12, Exodus 18). The fourth age had four ruling factors, which God used to govern Abraham and his descendants: human conscience, the restraint by the Holy Spirit, human government, and the divine promise. God was speaking to the people of this period mainly through visions and dreams like in no other time. But sometimes God would manifest Himself physically to them (Genesis12, 15, 17, 18, 20, 22, 28, 32). In this time as well there was no physical tabernacle of worship it was still a one on one system of fellowship with God.

THE AGE OF THE MOSAIC LAW

began when Moses received the law on Mount Sinai and continued until the crucifixion of Jesus Christ on Mount Calvary (Matthew 27:50-53). In the time of the law, the Israelites were governed by the written mosaic Laws, their conscience, the restraint by the Holy Spirit and the promise that God made to their Petrarch Abraham. I would like to stress this part a bit, because it is where the seventh day Adventists are getting things confused. What the majority of Christians recognize as the Law in the bible is the “Ten Commandants” which refers to the words that God wrote on the two stone tablets that Moses brought down from Mount Sinai (Exodus 31:18, Exodus 20). In the original Hebrew Tanakh “the Hebrew Bible”, what we Christians call “Ten Commandments” is called “Aseret ha-D'vareem” meaning the Ten Things, and in rabbinical texts they are called “Aseret ha-Dibrot” which interpreted means “the Ten Sayings or Utterances”. Jewish tradition teaches that the Ten Sayings are the ideological basis for the six hundred and thirteen “613” mitzvoth which means commandments in Torah, the first five books of the Old Testament. And the Jewish people believed that all six hundred and thirteen commandments that God gave to them are equally treated as the word of God; there are equally holy and equally obligatory. In other words, if you are keeping the law, you are obligated to obey the six hundred and thirteen laws not just the Ten Commandments as we Christians call it 

For whoever keeps the whole law and yet stumbles at just one point is guilty of breaking all of it (James2:10).

For all who rely on the works of the law are under a curse, as it is written: “Cursed is everyone who does not continue to do everything written in the Book of the Law” (Galatians3:10).

The Law was specifically given to the Jews not the gentiles, for the scripture teach that…

Whatever the law says, it says to those who are under the law, so that every mouth may be silenced and the whole world held accountable to God (Romans3:19).

During the era of Law, the Gentiles were governed mainly by their conscience (Romans2:13-15), while the Law was given to the Jewish people as their schoolmaster to bring them unto Christ, that all might be justified by faith (Galatians3:24-25). No single person was able to keep all of the laws, including Moses whom through God gave Israel the Law. In chapter sixteen of the Book of Leviticus the Lord gave the Israelites the procedure for the covering of their sins; the high priest performed the ritual. This involved a process of animal sacrifice where the blood of the animals was substituted for the life of the sinner. Then, the sins of the people were confessed and placed on the head of a goat, that goat was referred to as a scapegoat; the goat carried away the sins of the people. It was sent out of the camp and released into the wilderness.

In the previous ages there was no organized system of worship, both organized priesthood order and temple worship all came into full force under the era of Mosaic Law. The priesthood system in the period of Law was known as the Levitical priesthood, which began with the tribe of Levi and proceeded through the sons of the family of Aaron (Number18). Apart from people from the lineage of Levi, persons of other tribes were not permitted to serve as priest. In the Old Testament tabernacle and the Solomon’s temple, there were courts restricted only for the priests; the entrance to the (outer court) was free to all, including Gentiles, but the Gentiles were not allowed any further into the temple other then the Outer Court, only women in the time of their menstruation were not allowed to enter. Then the High Priest alone could go into the Holy of Holies, behind the curtain only once a year on the Day of Atonement when he made a sin offering on behalf of all of the people. Now, according to the word of the Lord, the law is only a shadow of the good things that are coming- not the realities themselves (Hebrews10:1-5). The law being the shadow of truth signifies that the written law has internal meaning and the internal meanings of the letter are more spiritual and powerful than the written code because it is eternal. For instance, the written law says...

Thou shalt not commit adultery (Exodus20:14)

Now, one can claim that he is keeping this commandment perfectly based on the fact that the person is not having sex outside of his/her marriage, but the truth of the matter is that adultery is beyond having sex outside of marriage; having sex outside of marriage is just one aspect of adultery. Here’s an example, If a married man makes love with his wife and uses the face of his ex- lover or another woman, or a married women makes love with her husband and internally focuses in her mind on her ex or another person she was attracted to, that is an advanced level of adultery. Jesus also says that anyone who even looks at a woman with lust has already committed adultery with her in his heart (Matthew5:28). This is why scripture teaches that the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life (2 Corinthians3:6). One can keep all of the written laws, but internally not be free from sin and guilt. That is why you cannot determine a true Christian based on facial expressions or by physical acts of good works, only God can judge the intent of our hearts. Here’s another example…

Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth.Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God! (Exodus20:4-5).

This commandment for example, to a non- spiritual person can mean only mere idol worshiping; bowing down before a physical statue of something or somebody, but in reality it goes far beyond bowing down to the image of virgin Mary or the statue of Buddha, the highest idol resides in the human mind…

And the word of the LORD came unto me, saying, Son of man, these men have set up their idols in their heart, and put the stumblingblock of their iniquity before their face: should I be enquired of at all by them? Thus saith the Lord GOD; Every man of the house of Israel that setteth up his idols in his heart (Ezekiel14:1-4).

The word of God should occupy the center of our hearts, when we allow other things to take over the place of God in our minds, that thing then becomes our idol, it can be your family, pastors, job, education, fashion etc. that is why Paul the apostle teaches that….

 the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds; Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ (2Corinthians10:4-5).

The word “Idol or Image” also signifies a soulish picture of a thing that is created in our hearts through the imagination. An example of this is single men who are looking for wife with a painted picture of the kind of woman they desire in their mind; they pray, fast and dream while focusing on that painted picture in their canal mind without even asking God to give them the kind of woman they need, that is idolatry. Anything that we do without putting God first is idolatry. Now, you can see how one can say “I am keeping the Law; I am not an idol worshiper” simply because the person is not bowing down to any physical image but in his heart he has his own idol which is more powerful than the shrine of Krishna in India. The eternal law can only be obeyed through the help of the Holy Spirit. That is why no one in the Old Testament was able to obey the Law; instead, the atonement of sin was introduced to them. However, it is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins, which is why when Christ came into the world; he said to God, “You did not want animal sacrifices or sin offerings. But you have given me a body to offer. You were not pleased with burnt offerings or other offerings for sin. Then he said, ‘Look, I have come to do your will, O God as is written about me in the scriptures (Hebrews10:5-10). Jesus Christ demonstrated fully all that was written in the book of Law, in other words, Christ has brought the law which was just a symbol into physical reality. That is what He meant when he made the following statement…

“Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them (Matthew5:17).

Christ has brought the Law into light; therefore we are no longer under the shadow, for the Law has ended... 

For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone that believeth (Romans10:4)   
         
THE AGE OF GRACE AND TRUTH

The scripture teach us that “law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ” (John1:17),the period of grace also called the church age or the time of the Gentiles, started from the crucifixion and will end at the second physical coming of Jesus Christ (Romans11:25). As the Israelites were governed mainly by the written mosaic laws, their conscience, and the promise that God made to their Petrarch Abraham; the Christians are governed mainly by the Holy Spirit of God. In the Old Testament, the spirit was coming upon the people and not dwelling permanently in them; however, is this era of grace every believer in Christ has the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, which is why the scripture teaches that For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God (Romans8:14). Christians should obey the eternal law of Christ through help of the Holy-Spirit. In this era of grace, Jesus Christ introduced a total new and accurate way in God’s service different from Judaism; everything now is spiritual, that is why the scripture teaches that we must worship God in spirit and in truth. We are to obey the eternal law which is written inside of our hearts, not in a book (Hebrews8:7-12)…

But now we are delivered from the law, that being dead wherein we were held; that we should serve in newness of spirit, and not in the oldness of the letter (Romans7:6).

Under this new covenant, Jesus Christ has summarized all of the laws into one and calls it a new commandment… 

A new commandment I give unto you, that ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another (John13:34-35).

We can be known as Jesus’ true disciples only if we love other’s the same way Christ loves us (1John3:15-16). The question now is not what day did you observe the Sabbath, but are you manifesting the unconditional love and compassion of Jesus Christ towards the people who don’t believe in what you believe? Please, carefully read the following three verses, I am sure you will get the massage clear…

(1) That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, of the Word of life (1John1:1).

(2) Let that therefore abide in you, which ye have heard from the beginning. If that which ye have heard from the beginning shall remain in you, ye also shall continue in the Son, and in the Father (1John2:24).

(3) For this is the message that ye heard from the beginning, that we should love one another (1John3:11)

The first scriptural passage helps us to understand that the word of God has been from the beginning, which confirms St. John1:1… In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God (John1:1). And the same verse informs that the same word that was from the beginning has manifested itself physically here on earth…. And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth (John1:14).

The second scripture above helps us to know that there was a particular message that also came with the manifested word of God, and it is only when we allow that message to abide in us that we can be assured that we are truly abiding in the Son and in the Father. It is the third scripture that clearly reveals the message to us, which is to love one another with the love of Christ. Now, how many of us Christians can truly boast of having the love of Jesus Christ towards people who don’t share the same faith? Let’s not go too far, can the Roman Catholic members confess that they love Baptist church members the same as they love their own church members? Can the Methodist Christians receive Pentecostal believers and preachers in their church without an element of segregation in their minds? If there is a true love of Jesus Christ in the structural church today, there wouldn’t be any division; there wouldn’t be black and white churches. A church dominated by one race or one color of skin is not operating in the spirit of love but rather the spirit of hate, racism. We need to know that it is not a matter of keeping a day holy but keeping ourselves Holy for God each day, with the hope of attaining the Holy Sabbath. My aim is to unveil the real meaning of Sabbath, just read it with an open mind, and I believe you will learn something from it.

It is also important for us to recognize that the temple has changed. The destruction of the physical temple in Jerusalem was a sign that the era of temple worship is over, that is why God allowed the Romans to demolish it in 70 AD. God’s temple is now with men….

And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God (Revelation21:3).

We are now the spiritual temple of God, as we should know, the outer court, Holy place and the Holy of Holies of the Old Testament tabernacle represents our spirit, soul and body. God has chosen to dwell in our heart through the Holy Spirit (1Corinthians3:16-17) since God has abolished the system of temple worship, the true worshippers are to worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father looks for such to worship him (John4:23-24) you don’t need to be registered with any Christian denominational group or to attend christian religious cathedrals each  Sunday to be a Christian, we are to manifest Christ wherever we are. All the cleansing rituals that were going on inside of the Old Testament temple should be going on in our hearts every day, in other words, we are to cleanse ourselves from sin everyday by the word of God to achieve total holiness in Christ (Ephesians5:26-27, 2Corinthians7:1). And let me announce to you that the only way the Christians will survive darkness this day is to be meeting to share the word of God one on one, or two to three (Mathew18:20).

The priesthood order as well and the service has changed, at the time that Jesus Christ died on the Cross, the temple curtain that covered the entrance to the Holy of Holies was torn in two by the supernatural mighty hand of the Lord (Matthew 27:51). In this, God was telling us that the Leviticus priesthood order was no longer necessary, believers could come directly to Him through the blood of Jesus Christ who is our great High Priest (Hebrews 4:14-16). Christians can go into the Holy of Holies which is now spiritual, only through the help of the Holy Spirit (Hebrew10:19).There should be no earthly mediators between God and man as existed in the Old Covenant, the dispensation of grace have come with a system of priesthood known as Melchesedec priesthood order. Jesus Christ Our Lord was designated by God to be high priest in the order of Melchizedek (Hebrew5:10). In the Melchesedec priesthood system, every born again child of God is divinely an ordained priest (1Peter2:9, John 15:16), while Jesus Christ remains the only high priest and the bishop of our soul (Hebrews6:20). Let our focus be on Christ alone not on preachers! Our service is not a matter of gathering together in particular day to watch preachers, but cleansing of ourselves from sin daily and to make disciples of all nations(Mathew28:18-20, 2Corinthians5:18-20). Jesus Christ did not sit in the temple and send his disciples to go distribute handbills and invitations for him to preach. Instead, Christ traveled around interior villages, cities and towns to meet the sinners in their home (Mathew9:35).

God’s desire is for all men including the Jews to leave the previous move “Mosaic Era” completely and enter into Grace and Truth, which is where the salvation is. Putting one leg in the law and the second leg in grace will only create a gentile religion, which is what the Christianity religion is today; Christianity religion is standing in between the Law and Grace. Anyone who believes in Christ should by no means be under the law, because in Christ we are completely brand new creatures, not reformed or recreated creatures; I am not very good in grammar, but at least I know what a new creature means. A new creature is a creature that has not existed in this planet before, it is not something that is created out of Judaism (2Corinthians5:17). Now, in becoming a new creature, Jesus Christ our Lord introduced to us a brand new way of worshiping God, which is very different from the system of Judaism.

THE KINGDOM AGE

This is a future event and is considered the seventh dispensation. It occurs when the Messiah Jesus Christ, the conquering Lion of the Tribe of Judah, returns to the earth. Christ the king will rule from Jerusalem over Israel and all of the nations of the world for one thousand years.

THE PERFECT AGE

This will be after the thousand years; then all of the saints including the Jewish and Gentile bride will be translated fully to immortality to reign in the new earth that God has made for the saints. (Revelation 21)

Right now the ages as counted seems to be eight dispensations which is the number of new beginning, but setting them according to the divine order equates to seven ages. A complete dispensation is counted as a day, for example, from the Age of Innocence to the Age Conscience is THE FIRST DAY,  and from the Age of Conscience  to the Age of Human Government is THE SECOND DAY, from the Age of human government to the Age of Promise is THE THIRD DAY, from the Age of Promise to the Age of Law is THE FOURTH DAY, from The Law to the Age of Grace is THE FIFTH DAY, from the time of Grace to the Kingdom Age is THE SIXTH DAY, from the Kingdom age to the Perfect age is THE SEVENTH DAY.  Here we can see that everything falls perfectly in a proper arrangement; Seven is the number of perfection, while five is the number of Grace. It is on the seventh day; which represents “the perfect or immortal age” that Genes 2:2 will be physically manifested…

And on the seventh day God ended his work which he had made; and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had made” (Genesis2:2).

On the seventh day, the end of making man will become complete, and that is when we will translate to immortality; perfection and immortalization of our mortal body is the finishing point, which is called the perfect age, or the immortal age. Note; Jesus says…

My Father is always at his work to this very day, and I, too, am working." (John5:17).

This scripture shows us that God never stops working at anytime. He is still in the process of making man to conform fully to His nature and His character, which will end on the seventh day; the immortal age.

MYSTERY OF THE SABBATH

Sabbath has been misinterpreted to mean a physical day of worship, it is significant for us to know that Sabbath does not represent any calendar day; it is neither Saturday nor Sunday as some blind religious people insist. The word "Sabbath” is derived from the Hebrew verb shavat meaning "rest" or “ceasing from work". The Modern Hebrew word for Sabbath is shevita, which means “a labor strike”.

THE JUDAIC SABBATH: Just as the water baptism in Christianity symbolizes the outward demonstration of the inward purification, under the Old Testament, Sabbath was given to the Jews as a sign of the spiritual rest that God has reserved for everyone of us in Christ Jesus…
And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, Speak thou also unto the children of Israel, saying, Verily my Sabbaths ye shall keep: for it is a sign between me and you throughout your generations; that ye may know that I am the LORD that doth sanctify you. (Exodus31:12-13)
Paul the apostle stated….
Therefore do not let anyone judge you by what you eat or drink, or with regard to a religious festival, a New Moon celebration or a Sabbath day. These are a shadow of the things that were to come; the reality, however, is found in Christ. (Colossians2:16-17)

When something is said to be a sign or shadow, it means that the reality exists somewhere. The physical rituals that the Jews observe as the Sabbath is nothing but an outward demonstration of a future spiritual rest that God has ordained for all saints in Christ. It would be foolish for one who is seeking a genuine substance to continue holding onto a symbol when the reality has been revealed. Despite what is said concerning the Sabbath, as long as we agree that the Old Testament foreshadows the New Testament, the New Testament Sabbath is spiritual and has nothing to do with a physical day. That is why the early disciples of Christ were meeting daily on one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house (Act2:46). Sabbath means rest, and is not a day; it is neither Saturday nor Sunday, but a life in the spirit or a state of being! (SABBATH IS A SPIRITUAL STATE OF PERMANENT PERFECTION AND IMMORTALITY IN GOD) we must recognize that our day of rest is yet to come…

There remains, then, a Sabbath-rest for the people of God; for anyone who enters God's rest also rests from his own work, just as God did from his.  Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest, so that no one will fall by following their example of disobedience. (Hebrew 4:9-11)

Our true day of rest will come on that day when we all (the mortal church) are translated into a spiritual state of permanent perfection and immortality in Jesus Christ, we shall all be changed in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye at the last trump and caught up by the power of the eternal spirit of God into a realm in the spirit where there will be no more labor, no sin and no more death. In the sabbatical realm, life of holiness, righteousness, peace and joy will never cease; God’s character will become a permanent standard of our lives.  

ENTERING THE SABBATH

Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest, so that no one will fall by following their example of disobedience (Hebrew 4: 11).

To enter Sabbath  means to achieve complete permanent sinless perfection and immortality in Christ; which is a position in the spirit realm where life, holiness, righteousness, peace and joy will remain still; in this realm, God’s way of doing things will become our natural life, there is no doubt that Jesus has purchased this rest for us. Spiritually, Christ has given us rest but the truth is that we have never fully entered into our rest; it is just like when the children of Israel entered Jericho and discovered that they still had many lands to conqueror. Our eternal salvation is progressive…

And do this, understanding the present time. The hour has come for you to wake up from your slumber, because our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed. Romans 13:11...

Without obtaining permanent perfection and immortalization of our earthly body, our rest is not completed. We (the church) must continue to grow in the spirit until our mortal body has been clothed with immortality, when the perishable puts on the imperishable, then shall we cease from all of our labor and remain forever in the sabbatical realm with the Lamb of God. (I Corinth, 15:50-56, II Corinth, 5:1-8)  As long as we remain in our earthly tabernacle (our perishable body), no one can boast of having complete rest. Our daily life in the mortal flesh is a warfare which will continue until we crucify our outward man and Christ is resurrected fully in us (I Corinth, 15:31, II Corinth, 10:10-14). I believe that no one among us can testify that his own warfare is over. It is childish to regard a physical day as Sabbath; a spiritual man should understand that there was no commandment of Sabbath in the Garden of Eden until man fell into sin. The reason was that Adam and Eve were partially partaking in the sabbatical realm, there was neither sin nor death in them. Sin and death came into the world as a result of their disobedience (Roman 5:21). It would be foolish of us (the new testament believers) to join the Jews in keeping the symbolic Sabbath, for the Jews will come into full realization one day and acknowledge that Sabbath was given to them as a symbol of life to come through Jesus Christ (Exodus 31:16 Colossians 2:16-17). Can any Jew or Christian say that he has experienced complete rest from labor, sin, war, terror and death? The physical Sabbath can only help to relax the mortal body while the battle continues within.  Only the Sabbath in Christ Jesus can offer us true rest whereby our spirit soul and body will be purified and remain permanently in the state of sinlessness, joy, peace and everlasting life. As long as we need to make daily confessions of sin and work at living a holy life, we have not fully come into our rest. We should keep growing while cleansing ourselves daily from sin until we experience sinlessness in our mortal body and cross over to join the mystical Sabbath church.

THE TRUE SABBATICAL CHURCH

A man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned (Corinthians 2:14). It is impossible for a carnal man to see the Sabbath church because it is spiritual. The true Sabbath assembly can only be visible to those Christians who are really walking in the spirit and whose minds are set on conforming fully to the image of Jesus Christ. I know that mentioning Sabbath church might cause some to think of seventh day Adventist or other Christian groups that believe in Saturday worship. The sabbatical church is completely different from the organized religious structure called the seventh day Adventist church, and it has nothing to do with any denomination. The Sabbath church is the mystical sinless immortalized people that assembled in spiritual mount Zion with Jesus Christ…
But ye are come unto mount Zion, and unto the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to an innumerable company of angels, To the general assembly and church of the firstborn, which are written in heaven, and to God the Judge of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect, And to Jesus the mediator of the new covenant, and to the blood of sprinkling, that speaketh better things than that of Abel. (Hebrew 12:22-24).
In the above scripture, the scribe who wrote down of the book of Hebrew prophetically declared the arrival of the mortal Church in mount Zion, the scribe was teaching and then spiritually transported up to the heavenly Zion, being there with the saints he declared, “we have come unto mount Zion!” The same with John the apostle, he was in the spirit on the Lord’s Day (Revelation1:10) meaning that he was spiritually transported into the future day of the Lord and witnessed all that will took place from the church age to the immortal age. There John said…
Then I looked, and there before me was the Lamb, standing on Mount Zion, and with him 144,000 who had his name and his Father's name written on their foreheads. And I heard a sound from heaven like the roar of rushing waters and like a loud peal of thunder. The sound I heard was like that of harpists playing their harps. And they sang a new song before the throne and before the four living creatures and the elders. No one could learn the song except the 144,000 who had been redeemed from the earth. These are those who did not defile themselves with women, for they kept themselves pure. They follow the Lamb wherever he goes. They were purchased from among men and offered as first fruits to God and the Lamb. No lie was found in their mouths; they are blameless (Revelation 14:1-5).
Zion is described in the scriptures as the city of the living God, which entails His dwelling place (Hebrews 12:22 Psalm 9:11 Isaiah 8:18 Joel 3:21 Psalm 50:2) God is a spirit (John 4:24), His city or His dwelling can never be a physical house made by hand, and it cannot be the physical mount in Jerusalem. God’s house should not be seen as a physical palace above the sky. To imagine that, the first question we should all ask ourselves is where was God living before creating the heaven and earth? I mean, if God existed before heaven and earth where was His house? It is important for us to know that God is a great and mighty Spirit; the heavens and earth are too small to contain Him.  For in him we live and move and exist…Act17:28. God is not residing inside the universe, but the universe exists within God, which is why the heavens and earth will pass away but God will remain God. God is a Spirit (John4:24) His city “Zion” represents a spiritual state of purity, power and immortality or complete level of permanent sinless perfection and everlasting life. God exists in the realm of sinlessness where life is constant and peace is still (Timothy 6:14-16). Sin and death can never reign in the dwelling place of God. Spiritually, many saints are occupying this position with Christ and that is the Immortal Assembly of God (The Zion Church). We (mortal Church) are going up to join the immortal church at the close of the mortal age when the last trumpet will sound and all of the true believers in Jesus Christ will be transformed to immortality to join Abraham, Enoch, Elijah, Moses and the other glorified servants of the Lord who make up the Mystical Sabbath Church. (1Corrinthians 15:50-54)  I believe that the mindset of every Christian should be to join the saints in Zion (Hebrew 12:22). The immortal assembly above are watching us (the mortal church), hoping to witness our great transformation coming soon. May we all come to that stage in Christ where we trample sin and death under our feet and enter into that realm in God where peace, joy and life is constant; which is the true Sabbath! 

Now, I know that many Christians will not agree with me that some saints are already in Mount Zion with the Lord, but what we should remember is that Moses and Elijah appeared to Jesus Christ during this transfiguration (Mathew 17). Their appearance didn’t occur in a dream and wasn’t fiction, it happened in real life. The story of the rich man and Lazarus (Luke 16) wasn’t a parable, it was also real, the angel who showed John the mysteries in the book or revelation didn’t reveal himself as Angel Gabriel or Michael, he considered himself to be as a fellow servant of God like other prophets (Rev 19:10, 22:8-9). The day that Christ gave His spirit on the Cross, at that moment the curtain of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom, the earth shook and the rocks split, the tombs broke open and the bodies of many holy people who had died were raised to life, they came out of the tombs, and after Jesus' resurrection, they went into the holy city and appeared to many people (Matthew 27:50-53). Enoch was translated without experiencing a physical death; now, if these saints are not with Christ where are they? We should strive to learn more in Christ, the truth is available to us all through our Lord Christ Jesus; our hearts must be open to receive it. Now, some people may ask, whether those that made it to Zion will be equal with God. The answer is no! God will always remain God, He will still operate in unapproachable light where no one has seen or can reach (Timothy 6:15-16).When we pull of this earthly tabernacle “the mortal body” and cross over to the other side, we will discover that immortality is just the first page of our life in God. There are glorious spiritual dimensions in heaven, and through the blood of Jesus, we have complete access to explore these heavenly glorious realms even while we are living here on earth. The writer of Hebrews speaks about people who were once enlightened by those who have experienced the good things of heaven and shared in the Holy Spirit,  who have tasted the goodness of the word of God and the power of the age to come (Hebrew6:4-5). Paul the apostle was alive and paid a visit to a spiritual dimension he called third heaven (2Corithians12:2-4). My own spiritual eyes became open the first time I read in the scripture where Jesus says….
And no man hath ascended up to heaven, but he that came down from heaven, even the Son of man which is in heaven (John3:13).
This scripture helps me to understand that I don’t need to die before visiting heaven, I can be here on earth and at the same time be in Heaven. Heaven is our base, the earth is our mission field, we should visit heaven frequently for Jesus has paved the way for us. The people in darkness pay a great price in Astral Projection to visit infernal places where their master Satan rules, but God has given us the free right to come into the holy places in the Heavenly sanctuary. May the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ of Nazareth grant unto us the spirit of wisdom and revelation to attain the sabbatical realm Amen! Shalom!


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