Sabbaths' Offering

Discussion in 'Other Christian Denominations' started by Gerhard Ebersoehn, Jan 25, 2008.

  1. Gerhard Ebersoehn

    Gerhard Ebersoehn
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2004
    Messages:
    8,869
    Likes Received:
    3
    Shewbread,
    The ‘Continual’ Sabbathly Offering Before the Lord

    One
    Shewbread’, from ‘lechem panim

    Ex25:30, “And thou shalt set upon the table shewbread before me continually.” “Kai epithéhseis epí tehn trápedzan artóús enohpíous enantíon mou diapantós.

    enohpíous” (<‘enohpéh’), facing, of presence.

    Ex35:5,13, “Let him bring an offering unto the LORD, … the table, and his staves, and all his vessels, and the shewbread.

    Ex39:33,35, “And they brought unto Moses … the table, all the vessels thereof, and the shewbread.

    1K7:48, “Solomon took … the table on which shewbread (was).” “Élabon Salohmóhn … tehn trápedzan eph’ hehs hoi ártoi tehs prosphoráhs.” (LXX)

    prosphoráhs” (<prosphoréoh), present, offer.

    2Chr4:19, “Solomon made … the tables and upon them (were to be) the loaves of shewbread.” “Epóíehse Salohmóhn … tas trapédzas, kai ep’ autóhn ártoi prothéseohs.

    prothéseohs” (<protíthehmi), put forward.

    Two
    The “shewbread of arrangement”, from ‘maareketh

    1Chr28:16, David gave Solomon his son the plan of the temple ... he gave him both of gold and silver the weight ... of the tables
    of shewbread (trapedzóhn tehs prothéseohs) ... David gave all to Solomon in the Lord’s handwriting according to the knowledge given him of the work of the pattern.
    2Chr2:4, Solomon, saying, I, his (David’s) son, also am building a house to the Name of the Lord my God, to consecrate it to Him, to continually
    (1) burn incense before Him (tou (1) thymiáhin apénanti autóú thymíama), and
    (2) offer shew-bread always (kai (2) próthesin diapantós); and to offer up
    (3) whole-burnt-offerings continually morning and afternoon (diapantós (3) toprohí kai todéílehs) :–
    on the Sabbaths, at the new moons, and at the feasts of the Lord our God : This is a perpetual statute for Israel.

    2Chr29:18, The Levites went to king Ezekias, and said, we purified all the things in the house of the Lord,
    (1) the altar of whole-burnt-offering and its vessels, and
    (2) the table of shew-bread (tehn trápredzan tehs prothéseohs ) and its vessels; and
    (3) all the vessels which king Achaz polluted in his reign, in his apostasy, we have prepared and purified: Look, They are in place before the altar of the Lord!

    We see that ‘maareketh’, is used when institutional or when a re-instatement of the ‘arrangement’ or institution. We see the “statute”, “to continually” and “perpetually”, “offer shew-bread always”, meant to every Sabbath Day, offer it. It does not mean the shewbread to be offered fresh every day. It means ‘every day’ as little as it means every day ‘mornings and afternoons’; it means once every day as little as it means twice every day. It means every day as little as it means only monthly, or only with every yearly feast! The “statute” to “offer shew-bread always”, “continually” and “perpetually”, meant the shewbread to be
    offered, “on the Sabbathsevery Sabbath Day, and also “on the Sabbathsevery Sabbath Day “at the new moons, and at the feasts of the Lord our God”. For thus it has,

    divinely, been “arranged”. The Shewbread was an offering of Sabbath days only, and specifically, for its peculiar Sabbath’s-meaning: “… in the Lord’s handwriting according to the knowledge given …”!
     
  2. Gerhard Ebersoehn

    Gerhard Ebersoehn
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2004
    Messages:
    8,869
    Likes Received:
    3
    Three
    ‘Shewbread’, from ‘panim

    The shewbread “when the camp moves on”:

    Numbers 4:7, “Upon the table of shewbread (LXX, “On the table set forth for shewbread”, “epí tehn trápedzan tehn prokeiménehn”) they shall spread a cloth of blue and put thereon the dishes … and covers to cover withal. The continual bread shall be (laid) thereon (LXX, “the continual loaves shall be upon it”, “hoi ártoi hoi diápantos ep’ autéhs ésontai”), and they shall spread upon them a cloth of scarlet, and shall cover the same with a covering of badgers’ skins.

    prokeiménehn’ (<prókeimai), set before, proposed.
    diápantos’ (<diá + pántos), throughout.

    Four
    ‘Shewbread’, from ‘lechem

    1Chr23:25-31, “The LORD hath given rest … they shall no more carry the tabernacle … by the last words of David … the Levites were to wait on the sons of Aaron … for the service of the house of the LORD …
    (1) both for the shewbread (ta érga leitourgéías eis tous ártous tehs prothéseohs),
    (2) and for the fine flour for meat offering, and for the unleavened cakes, and for that which is baked in the pan, and for that which is fried, and for all manner of measure and size;
    (3) And to stand every morning to thank and praise the LORD, and likewise in the afternoon;
    (4) And to offer all burnt sacrifices unto the LORD :–
    In the Sabbaths, in the new moons, and on the set feasts; By number, according to the order commanded unto them, continually before the LORD.

    We see:
    In a sense all sacrifices and offerings were ‘perpetual’ or ‘continual’:
    (1) The yearly or seasonal, every year every season and always, without interruption continually, and for ever perpetually;
    (2) The monthly, every month and always, without interruption continually, and for ever perpetually;
    (3) The sabbathly, both of:
    (3a) the weekly Sabbath and
    (3b) the sabbaths of the Feasts
    every sabbath and always, without interruption continually, and for ever perpetually;
    (4) The ‘morning-and-afternoon’ or ‘daily’, every day both morning and afternoon, always, without interruption continually, and for ever perpetually;
    (5) The ‘morning’, every day only in the mornings, always, without interruption continually, and for ever perpetually.

    2Chr13:10-11, “As for us, the LORD is our Mighty, God, and we have not forsaken Him: The priests who minister unto the LORD are the sons of Aaron (and not the priests of Baal), and the Levites wait upon their business:
    (1) They burn unto the LORD every morning and every evening, burnt sacrifices and sweet incense;
    (2) They set in order also the Shewbread upon the pure table (not polluted by the sacrifices of apostasy); and
    (3) They set in order the candlestick of gold with the lamps thereof, (in the afternoons) in order to burn every night :–
    For we keep the charge of the LORD our Mighty, God;
    But ye, have forsaken Him!

    Neh10:33, “For the service of the house of our Mighty, God, we have charged ourselves yearly with the third part of a shekel,
    (1) For the Shewbread, and
    (2) For the continual meat offering; and
    (3) For the continual burnt offering :–
    Of the Sabbaths; of the new moons; for the set Feasts …” all offerings generally.

    1Chr9:32, “The sons of the Kohathites were over the Shewbread, to prepare it every Sabbath.
     
  3. Gerhard Ebersoehn

    Gerhard Ebersoehn
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2004
    Messages:
    8,869
    Likes Received:
    3
    Conclusion:
    Only some sacrifices, offerings and services of the seasonal Feasts, uniquely belonged to them only. Sacrifices and other offerings and services generally, were common, whether yearly, monthly, sabbathly, mornings and afternoons, or mornings only. But only the Shewbread uniquely was a Sabbathly ‘offering’ and ‘service’. Only the Shewbread was ‘prepared’ and ‘offered’ / ‘ministered’ on ‘sabbaths’ only, whether on the weekly ‘Sabbaths’, or on the ‘Feast-sabbaths’; and then lasted for the whole week or seven days, after.

    Thus the Shewbread ‘showed’ the Conqueror over corruptibility, Jesus Christ; and it ‘showed’ the perpetuity of the Sabbath – “a sign between Me and you, for ever!
    (1) The Shewbread was the only offering that was not consumed in it’s preparation, but was perfected therein.
    (2) The Shewbread was the only offering that applied and lasted after the duration of its preparation.
    (3) The Shewbread was the only offering without ‘remains’. After its continuity ended, the Shewbread was not disposed of by burning or other means, but was eaten wholly by the priests.




    Shewbread – Sabbath’s Offering Before the LORD

    The Shewbread, as ‘continual offering before the LORD’, being the token of the eternal presence of the mercy of God, of Eternal Life, and of God’s gracious and without failing Sabbath’s Rest – the Shewbread, most desired by the Lord offering before his Face – is token of the resurrection of Jesus Christ our Lord from the dead, “in Sabbath’s-time”, by which the life of the Body of Christ’s Own is raised from the dead and is being created and brought together in Him – Lord for ever inseparably of both the Sabbath and the People of God. The Shewbread signified that bond in Eternal Covenant of Grace.
     
  4. Gerhard Ebersoehn

    Gerhard Ebersoehn
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2004
    Messages:
    8,869
    Likes Received:
    3
    Three-fold Perfection


    (1) The Passover was the Sabbath, “the Day the LORD has made”, in the making! The Passover was not finished on either the day of the sacrifice, Abib 14, or, the ‘sabbath’ of Abib 15! On the ‘sabbath’ day of Abib 15, the ‘going out’ of the Passover just started.

    (2) On both ‘sabbaths’ that would occur on every Passover, Shewbread was placed ‘before the face’ of the Lord. The Shewbread of the ‘sabbath’ of Abib 15 Passover-sabbath, “showed forth” to the fulfilment of the ‘bringing out from Egypt’, completed on Abib 16 First Sheaf-Day.

    (3) In
    (1) the Shewbread, of both (2) the sabbaths of the beginning and fulfilment of the ‘bringing-out from Egypt’ on (3) the day and date of First Sheaf Abib 16, is seen: three-fold, the Divine Antitype and Fulfilment by the Once-for-All ‘Bringing In’, the type and figure, in:
    (1) Shewbread, on
    (2) the day and date of Abib 16 First Sheaf, on
    (3) the Sabbath Day, “when God raised Christ from the dead
    and set Him at his right hand in heavenly realms” of “the glory of the Father”.

    Thus was ‘arranged’ (maareketh), The Shewbread of God, even Jesus Christ, on the pure and golden altar of
    The-Temple-of-His-Offering. The Shewbread of the Old Testament, derives from its New Testament Institutor.

    Which day, in God’s ‘calendar’, has this Sabbath’s-event of Shewbread-placement been? “For God thus concerning the Seventh Day spake”; “He would not concerning another day thereafter have spoken!” (Hb4:4,8) “Mark the coming in and the going out” of This One the Lord of the Sabbath!

    Reserved from the ages, this threefold co-incidence in the dispensations of God’s providence, “once for all”, of :–
    Shewbread, Abib 16 First Sheaf, and Sabbath Day of the LORD your God, “shows forth: Christ: when being raised First Sheaf from the dead on the Sabbath, Exalted Shewbread “offered”, on the heavenly altar-seat of pure glory.

    Continually and simultaneous has been keeping up with God’s Passover, the Sabbath’s continual Shewbread, punctually replaced so that it perpetually could be present, and be ‘presented’, and be ‘shown’, and ‘offered’, on the altar, before the LORD, in His Glory, through Christ, in Victory, of Resurrection from the dead. The Shewbread placed “on the Sabbath” of Abib 16, two sabbaths after each other, and on two of the head-days of the Passover after each other – ‘showing forth’ witness of the Coming Messiah in Truth and Light – is Shewbread of our Lord Jesus Christ in glorious perfection of Life.





     
  5. Gerhard Ebersoehn

    Gerhard Ebersoehn
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2004
    Messages:
    8,869
    Likes Received:
    3
    Hot

    Shewbread that (according to 1Sam.21:6) still was ‘hot’ when “replaced on the Sabbath”, must have been baked, just before the Sabbath would have started with sunset. The switch of the old and new Shewbread must have taken place as soon as the Sabbath had,begun. That means the furnace had been prepared, also the dough and the utensils, and the baking had been done, on the late afternoon of the Sixth Day or “Preparation which is the Fore-Sabbath”, before sunset. The question cannot even be asked, The day begun with sunset, or the day begun with sunrise? It is a ridiculous question.

    Josephus writes:The breads) were baked the day before the Sabbath, but were brought into the holy place on the morning of the Sabbath, and set upon the holy table.” (Antiquities of the Jews 3, 10, 7 in S.Bacchiocchi, TCR p. 82) The loaves, if they were baked before sunset on Friday and placed on Sabbath morning only, when placed, would no longer have been hot. Josephus obviously must be wrong! Bacchiocchi remarks, “The replacement of the shewbread with hot bread could hardly have been done on Sabbath morning but presumably on Friday afternoon in conjunction with the beginning of the Sabbath. This conclusion is required by two facts. First, it is hard to believe that the priests would bake bread on Sabbath morning, since, as Josephus points out, all the baking was done “the day before the Sabbath”. Second, David and his men could hardly have travelled on a Sabbath day all the way to Nob where Ahimelech lived.” (Ibid p. 82/83) (Emphasis CGE)

    The inevitable inference of the Bread being changed hot, on the Sabbath during evening after sunset, is that the mixing of the dough as well as the baking of the bread, were done on the Sixth Day, just before its sunset-end.

    Bacchiocchi, still insisting, assumes:The shift in time from Friday afternoon to Sabbath morning may reflect the adoption
    of a sunrise reckoning in Temple services. (Emphasis CGE) Bacchiocchi will not accept Josephus could be wrong! That is to say, if, the quoted translation with “on the morning of the Sabbath” is correct. Does Josephus say that, or perhaps something like ‘éhlthen hehméra’, meaning ‘began day’ – with evening? Even were the translation of Josephus correct, it would leave us nowhere as far as the reckoning of the day in the Bible is concerned. The day in Bible times was reckoned, from a Jewish and Scriptural standpoint, from sunset to sunset. If a deviation from this use could have incurred, an even easier corruption could also have crept in ahead of any competing error, and the bread instead of hot could on the Sabbaths’ mornings have been placed cold –and old– on the altar – which practice greatly would have deprived the Sabbath’s Shewbread of its significance of vigorous, eternal, unquenchable, New, Life ... “Hot”!

    Further, a sunrise reckoning of the day would imply the improbable, unnatural and inhospitable situation for the preparing for and making of the fire and the dough, and of the baking of the bread in night’s darkness. (“Night when nobody works” – especially not priests.) A situation without precedent would have doomed, considering the time all other offerings and sacrifices were prepared and made. The priests were Commanded to do their work “between the nights”, that is, in daylight.

    Observes Bacchiocchi, very aptly, that Josephus himself in any case “offers (‘with remarkable clarity’) an explicit evidence of the prevailing sunset reckoning in New Testament times. He describes how one of the priests “gave a signal beforehand with a trumpet, at the beginning of every seventh day, in the evening twilight, as also at the evening when the day was finished, as giving notice to the people when they were to leave off work, and when they were to go to work again.Ibid p.71b
     
  6. Gerhard Ebersoehn

    Gerhard Ebersoehn
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2004
    Messages:
    8,869
    Likes Received:
    3
    And All its Vessels

    2Chr4:19, “Solomon made … the tables and upon them (were to be placed) the loaves of shewbread.” More than one table; ‘tables’ – not ‘altars’!

    1Sam.21:3, “What is under your hand? Give me five loaves of bread in my hand, or, as many as you can give me of what you have!” told David the priest of Nob, Ahimelech.

    Ahimelech was busy to change the Shewbread – those of the last Sabbath with those of the Sabbath just begun. He needed to bring the loaves from the furnace outside to the altar inside the temple. For that, the priest needed two tables. The new Shewbread loaves were taken from the furnace and placed on one table and upon it, were carried into the Holy to the altar. Another table served to remove the old loaves with. The new loaves were all brought in together on the first table. Then, one loaf of the old loaves was taken from the altar in order to create space for one new loaf, and was put down onto a second table, the ‘out’-table, so as not to contaminate the new loaves on the ‘in’-table. A hot loaf was then taken from this ‘in’-table, and put – ‘arranged’ – in the place of an old one on the altar. As long as the loaves remained on the altar, they were ‘holy’, because the altar ‘sanctified’ them. The old loaves could not all be at once removed from the altar, nor all the new loaves ‘placed’ on a ‘clear’ altar together. The continual ‘presence’ and ‘showing’ of the Shewbread should not be broken.

    Just as Ahimelech was putting down onto the ‘out’-table a next loaf of the remaining Shewbread, David entered, straight into the lions’ den where Saul detained the Edomite with hidden sword. But David noticed the old loaves under Ahimelech’s hand on the ‘out’-table. David asks for five loaves or as many as Ahimelech could give him. David couldn’t immediately see how many had already been removed from the altar for a new. There were seven loaves, one for every day of the week. Offerings were often doubled for the Sabbaths; so there could have been an eighth loaf of Shewbread. I think eight the likely number, because with eight loaves on the altar, when changed, they would never be less than seven loaves left on the altar.

    Mark well the entering in of the house.” (Ez44:5)

    With most loaves already changed, David entered and asked for about five. He didn’t ask any loaves that might still have been on the altar! David did not demand all of the priests’ food, but was considerate and meek in his request. He respected the sanctity of the Shewbread that had not yet been removed from the altar, because it is the altar that sanctifies the bread – as Christ is our Altar of Mercy in the Sanctuary of Heaven that sanctifies us as well as our burdens, which we have placed on Him. “Come to Me, all you heavy laden … and I will give you rest!”

    The priest protested, “There is no common bread under my hand, only holy bread – you could have had them if your men were holy (separated from their wives) for at least three days.” Defends David, “They have; the young men are holy. In any case that bread in a way no longer is holy as if sanctified today!”

    Ahimelech has everything the wrong way round. He thinks the breads are holy in themselves, on or off the Altar. He thinks a person must sanctify himself; holiness is the work of one’s own, not a gift of grace; it doesn’t derive from the altar; the altar’s holiness derives from the bread’s holiness, the holiness of which in the end is derived from the holiness of the priest who prepares it. But David the shepherd-boy knows better, because the Lord Himself was David’s Rabbi. Remember what we read at the beginning of this lecture? “David gave all to Solomon in the Lord’s handwriting according to the knowledge given him of the work of the pattern.” David designed the Tabernacle – he drew its plans and specifications, and patented it; also the duties of the priests, David commanded! But this priest wants to teach David, about the holy things!

    Now pay attention to this priest’s moralising! How good he was at it! But he thinks nothing of the soldier’s deadly dangerous and self-sacrificing work, in his cosy little sanctuary. O Pharisees, you hypocrites! Generation of vipers! Woe unto you!

    But how was the Shewbread no longer ‘holy’ and ‘not as if sanctified today’? Its ‘show-time’ has run out! It was evening-start of day and Sabbath now, and time for the old Shewbread to be replaced with new Shewbread.
     
  7. Gerhard Ebersoehn

    Gerhard Ebersoehn
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2004
    Messages:
    8,869
    Likes Received:
    3
    The Sword of Saul

    There was that day a certain man of the servants of Saul, He was Doeg, an Edomite, the top herdman of Saul, stationed in the LORD’s sight (in the LORD’s Sanctuary)! David said to Ahimelech, You have a spear or sword? Right at hand I mean! I didn’t bring sword or weapons with me. Quick! Haste, it’s royal duty! Ahimelech answered, The sword of Goliath the Philistine, behind the draped apron – wrapped in a cloth. Take it if you want; there’s no other. None like this indeed!, said David. Then David left.

    There is no sword like that!” It was the sword of Goliath whom David slew with a pebble, then decapitated him with – the sword with which he, David, defied the armies of the Philistines who defied the armies of the LORD. But Saul unlawfully took this sword from David for himself, and unlawfully brought his stolen trophy of vainglory into the Holy of the Tabernacle of God where the Shewbread showed forth the glory of God! It also was unlawful for an unclean sword – or ‘cleansed’ for that matter – to be brought into the Lord’s House. Saul with collaboration of the priests, unlawfully, hid, the sword while in the Tabernacle in this place, were supposed to be openly exhibited “before the LORD” every object of furniture and use. Saul brought the sword of Goliath into the House of the Lord unlawfully, because the sword was very heavy, and no burden should be carried on the Sabbath. Saul topped his arrogance with the unlawful appointment of a heathen in the Sanctuary of God, to guard his abomination there! (Ez43:7b-8)

    The Sword of David

    David coming into the Holy, although strange and against the stipulations of all ‘Law’ to the priests, hindered David, not the least. To David the sword’s presence in the Holy of the Tabernacle, was obnoxious, but nothing wrong with for the priests.

    On this Sabbath Day, the true conqueror would act appointed priest of God, and cleanse the Sanctuary of both the Edomite and the idol. He will receive ‘this day’, his own and valiantly won spoil, back, and lawfully, will carry the pollution out of the House of God! “And David arose and went out.” “For the King’s business requires haste and valour!” – God’s warrior and lion of Judah! Look at Jesus, how He, cleansed the temple!

    Like Christ our Lord, David “sprang out of Juda – of which tribe Moses spake nothing concerning priesthood”. But Judah’s was the line of kings. King David, stood in the temple in the service of the Lord and of his House, undaunted, priest of the Most High God! David’s presence in fact sanctified the Holy of the temple, yea, honoured it.

    Ezekiel 44 records of the east-gate of the sanctuary: “Because the LORD, the Mighty, God of Israel, hath entered in by it … this gate shall be shut; it shall not be opened, and no man shall enter into it … It is for the prince; the prince, he, shall sit in it to eat bread: Bread-Before-the-LORD.” David the prince, type of Jesus Christ, King and Lord! “The place of my throne, and the place of the soles of my feet, where I will dwell in the midst of the children of Israel for ever. My Holy Name shall the house of Israel no more defile… Behold, the Glory of the LORD filled the House.” Ez43:7,5

    Jesus in rising from the dead in the Sabbath, entered in through the east gate, Shewbread into heavenly places of Holiness – the Prince, even the King, Son of David and Son of Man –, and ate on the Sabbath Day on appointment with God.
     
  8. Gerhard Ebersoehn

    Gerhard Ebersoehn
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2004
    Messages:
    8,869
    Likes Received:
    3
    Lord of the Sabbath

    By what is the Son of Man, ‘Lord’? By what is the Son of Man, Victor and Triumphator? By resurrection from the dead; by victory and triumph over death and grave! By which victory and triumph over death and grave then, the Son of Man, is Lord.

    By what “is the Son of Man Lord of, the Sabbath Day”? By the Triumph of Victory of His, of, the Sabbath Day! By what then is the Sabbath Day the day, the Son of Man, is Lord of? By what Triumph of Victory of the Son of Man, consists in, even His resurrection from the dead! By resurrection from the dead therefore, the Son of Man, is Lord, “Lord, even of the Sabbath”.

    The lord if not in the day of battle is lord, cannot be, ‘lord’. Jesus the Son of Man, Conqueror of death in battle, “Therefore, is Lord, Lord indeed, of the Sabbath!” The Hero of the Day, is Christ; and his Triumph is that He took up again His Life; He had the Power in battle to! Therefore became He, ‘Lord’. The greatness of the day, is that “this day” and “on” it – the Sabbath Day –, Christ rose from the dead:Lord’! Otherwise Jesus could not have claimed that He is ‘Lord’, or, that He of the Sabbath, is ‘Lord’! The Name, ‘Lord’, is Victor; The LORD is His Name: Christ Jesus, Hero, Deliverer, Victor of the Day – Triumphator.

    Fourty and Two Days

    A giant: “I defy the armies of Israel this day! Give me a man! That we may fight! …
    A herdsman: “Then David said to the Philistine … This day will the LORD deliver you into my hand … I come to you in the Name of the LORD …

    1Sm17:2, “Israel pitched by the valley of Elah” – day one and first day of the battle: “They set the battle in array”, also means they planned the days of battle – carefully! “The Philistine drew near, morning and evening and presented himself, forty days … all men (of Israel), fighting in the valley with the Philistines. The next day (now 41 days), early, David rose up … and went.” All the hustle and bustle of that day follows up to verse 31 and further to 37, “… they rehearsed the words of David before Saul … And Saul said to David, Go! and the LORD be with thee!” The ‘morning’, and Goliath ‘presented himself’ once again, 42 days, “And the Philistine came and drew near …”!

    From the first day when they ‘pitched’, it is six times the week, on the Seventh Day of the week, and Sabbath, exactly 42 days. So was it the Sabbath Day, when David slew Goliath. “This day … in the Name of the LORD” – Lord of the hosts of Israel – through victory ‘kindled’ the light of Israel, and sang, “The LORD will lighten my darkness!” (2Sm22:29)


    Day of Shewbread

    In a service of the Sabbath Day, came David into the holy, and stood, king-priest. Now mark well, David forced not his way in! “Thus saith the LORD God, The gate of the inner court that looketh to the east shall be shut the six working days; but on the Sabbath it shall be opened … and the prince shall enter by the way of the porch of that gate … as he did on the Sabbath Day”, Ez46:1-2,12. “For the prince, the prince, he shall sit in it to eat: Bread-Before-the-LORD.” That was bread ‘shown’ – ‘Shewbread’! The king, like the priests, ate of the Shewbread! Jesus said the priests ‘profaned’ the Sabbath with their work on it; He did not say David profaned, Sabbath or tabernacle, by eating of the Shewbread. The priests with their works polluted the temple, but David ‘cleansed the House of the LORD’, for David was a type of Christ. “Is there not a cause?
     
  9. Gerhard Ebersoehn

    Gerhard Ebersoehn
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2004
    Messages:
    8,869
    Likes Received:
    3
    Revived

    When David “waxed faint” and “got tired” at his near defeat as an older man against Ishbebénob of “the sons of the giant” Goliath (See 2Sm21:17), “The men of David sware unto him, Thou shalt go no more out with us to battle, that thou quench not the light of Israel”. Yea, Sabbath was it indeed on this earlier occasion, and day of renewal of Shewbread and of ‘lighting the light of Israel’. This day, for warm, life-giving energy received and regained, is day of ‘reviving’!

    Look at Ex23:12 and 31:17, both ‘Sabbath’-Scriptures, with ‘naphash’ < ‘nephesh’, life, spirit, vigour, strength, for servant, master, and, LORD. LXX translates with ‘anapsyxoh’, ‘refresh / revive / charge’ – from ‘psyxeh’, soul, life, heart. Compare 2Sm16:14 (king, people came, refreshed); Ex23:12 (stranger refreshed); 8:15, 1Sm16:23 (relieved), Ps66:12 (place of refreshment), 39:13 (spare, recover), Jr30:9 (I will raise up their king; cf.v.22), Jdg15:19 (water from jaw, spirit came back, revived), Hos12:8 (refreshment)

    Look at Ruth the third chapter, 4,7,8,14, and Is28:12, “revive” from ‘margea’ / ‘margeloth’ – ‘foot’:- To recuperate (in one’s sleep) one’s vigour; like also in the Old Testament custom of feet-washing.

    Day of Song

    These are the things God’s ‘katapausis’-rest and ‘anapausis’-rest of the Sabbath Day, and the Shewbread, had in common: “Reviving” – Sabbath’s revival, Ex31:17. “The Sabbath is sign between me and the children of Israel for ever; Why? Because THE LORD, in six days!!, made heaven and earth (by the exceeding greatness of his power): Because, God on the Seventh Day (victoriously triumphant), rested, and revived refreshed!” That’s why the Sabbath Day, “this day” in the history of Israel in the lordly triumph of David over the Philistines, in truth was “a sign between me and the children of Israel for ever”, “a sign that”, says the prophet, “I am your Mighty, God; and you (little worm Jacob), are my People!” (See Ez20:12,20, Zch8:8, et al.) Isn’t this Grace? How comely thou art! Isn’t this the God of the Covenant in his faithfulness? How great Thou art! Is not this a Promise that has to do with God’s Law, and, with His Sabbaths, and, with God’s Covenant of Grace?

    And David spake unto the LORD the words of this song in the day that the LORD had delivered him out of the hand of all his enemies and out of the hand of Saul: The LORD is my Rock and my Fortress, my Deliverer, the God of my Rock; in Him will I trust: He is my Shield, and the Horn of my Salvation, my High Tower and my Refuge – my Saviour! Thou savest me from violence. (Thou givest me rest.) I will call on the LORD who (through victory) is worthy, to be praised, LORD!” 2Sm22

    Further on, one can read of David’s Jonah’s-anxieties as of Christ’s in his sufferings of death; and from verse 7 to 21, one can read as of the Resurrection of the Anointed of the LORD (51); as of the recompense of the Righteous One of God. The rest of the Song is just the Song of the Lamb, the Song also of Moses, sung by this king-priest David, of his Saviour Jesus Christ. “Lord”, is Jesus’ Name of praise, Title won by Victory over sin and death.
     
  10. Gerhard Ebersoehn

    Gerhard Ebersoehn
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2004
    Messages:
    8,869
    Likes Received:
    3
    Precedent

    Although fugitive and outlaw, this Sabbath Day with enemy’s wrested sword and temple’s holy bread, David and band shall sing, and celebrate and feast! They “feast” Shewbread of Sabbaths’-Service, Christians, “eating and drinking” of The Shewbread of God, Jesus Christ. “And let not you condemn you anyone!” Col2:12-19!

    The Shewbread, “showing forth”, ‘shon forth’ the triumph of the Lord-Victor, Christ. The Shewbread is Sabbath’s offering of ‘shining forth – figuratively and spiritually –, Jesus’ Triumph in resurrection : “resurrection from the dead”; “from”, shame and corruption, into Glory and Incorruption. “So also is the resurrection of the Dead – sown in corruption, Raised in Incorruption; sown in dishonour, Raised in Glory; sown in weakness, Raised in Power.” “Death is swallowed up in Victory.”

    Mark
    2:23
    to
    28
    At that time
    On the Sabbath
    Pluck ears of corn
    David, shewbread

    Not lawful to eat
    Made for man
    Son of man
    Lord of Sabbath

    Math
    12:1
    to
    8
    At that time
    On the Sabbath
    Plucked ears of corn
    David, shewbread
    On the Sabbath days
    Not lawful for (them)
    Greater than temple
    Son of man
    Lord of Sabbath
    Luke
    6:1
    24-30
    to
    12:
    1-8
    On the Sabbath
    second after first
    Through corn fields
    David, shewbread

    Not lawful for (them)

    Son of man
    Lord of Sabbath

    John
    - – - – - – -


    Jesus Christ is Lord, in fact “Lord of the Sabbath”, and the illustration of David and the Shewbread-incident, of how “the Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath Day”, confirms the very ‘Lawful’ nexus the Word of God creates and makes fast between Sabbath and Mercy; between Shewbread and Bread of Life – as on this Sabbath, like David, first hand experienced by Jesus and his disciples.

    David on the Sabbath did nothing ‘unlawful’ – things not stipulated in the Law. But he ‘kept’ the Sabbath the unconventional way; he made the Sabbath a special day – a Feast! David without even knowing, was doing the Great
    Work of the Law, to love so as to give one’s own life for the life of one’s friends. Jesus said, no greater love has any! Where is a greater sinner than David? Where is the man God loved dearer? Only the Son, whom the Father delights in above any. God’s Sabbath Day – God’s Day of Rest – for David ‘came’ so naturally, so without questioning, so without doubt, so without anxiety, he planned it, lived it, breathed it, sang it, ate it, so without fear as to walk with his God, as to storm an enemy or scale a wall. David knew no fear, for God first loved him. David was a Sabbath-keeper to God’s heart.
     
  11. Gerhard Ebersoehn

    Gerhard Ebersoehn
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2004
    Messages:
    8,869
    Likes Received:
    3
    Does 'No answers' mean everybody agrees? well, that's great!
     
  12. trustitl

    trustitl
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2007
    Messages:
    735
    Likes Received:
    0
    Or nobody is interested in another argument about the Sabbath. Let it REST :laugh: !

    All that typing for what?
     
  13. BobRyan

    BobRyan
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2002
    Messages:
    30,837
    Likes Received:
    4
    It means that a 3000 word essay is not the way to make a point or ask a question on a discussion board.

    Even if the subject title was "the sky is blue" you would need to approach this in a more compelling-inviting way.

    Instead of posting the "reference guide" first - how about making a couple of statements - or asking a few questions -- then showing that the reference guide supports your claim "from scripture alone - not from a GE-only translation of scripture".

    {If you have to argue that accepted Bible translations can not be used to support your argument - you might want to start out there and prove that it makes sense to go down that road.)

    in Christ,

    Bob
     
    #13 BobRyan, Feb 1, 2008
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 1, 2008
  14. Gerhard Ebersoehn

    Gerhard Ebersoehn
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2004
    Messages:
    8,869
    Likes Received:
    3
    trusitl,
    "Or nobody is interested in another argument about the Sabbath. Let it REST :laugh: !

    All that typing for what?"

    GE
    Is it me you detest, or the Word of God? Do you do despite to me, or to the Word of God? Is it I who give you rest or won't give you rest, or is it God?

    But why? So that Trustitl may in peace go on venerating the lord Sun's day and call it service to God in the Name of Jesus Christ? Then wait for your reward while you go on in your idolatry and despising of the Scriptures!
     
  15. Gerhard Ebersoehn

    Gerhard Ebersoehn
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2004
    Messages:
    8,869
    Likes Received:
    3

    A sermon preached by Doug Van Meter at Brackenhurst Baptist Church on Sunday morning, 2 December 2001
    ‘1At that time Jesus went on the sabbath day through the corn; and his disciples were an hungred, and began to pluck the ears of corn, and to eat. 2But when the Pharisees saw it, they said unto him, Behold, thy disciples do that which is not lawful to do upon the sabbath day. 3But he said unto them, Have ye not read what David did, when he was an hungred, and they that were with him; 4How he entered into the house of God, and did eat the showbread, which was not lawful for him to eat, neither for them which were with him, but only for the priests? 5Or have ye not read in the law, how that on the sabbath days the priests in the temple profane the sabbath, and are blameless? 6But I say unto you, That in this place is one greater than the temple. 7But if ye had known what this meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice, ye would not have condemned the guiltless. 8For the Son of man is Lord even of the sabbath day. 9And when he was departed thence, he went into their synagogue.’

    Introduction


    Matthew 12 is a pivotal chapter in our study of the gospel of Matthew. In this chapter, the period of conflict in the Lord’s life on earth is begun. We see this conflict forewarned in Matthew 10. In Matthew 11, it is foreshadowed, but, finally, in Matthew 12, it coming to the forefront of His ministry. Ultimately, this conflict would end in the crucifixion of the Son of God.

    As we approach this chapter, we must always bear in mind the fact that there are only two possible responses to the Lord Jesus Christ. First, there is the response of conviction coupled with contrition, which will ultimately lead to conversion. But second, there is the response of conviction coupled with contempt, which will ultimately lead to crucifixion. Those who act with contempt toward the conviction of God in their lives ‘crucify to themselves the Son of God afresh, and put him to an open shame’ (Hebrews 6:6).

    In Matthew 11:25-30, we see the first (and the desired) response to the Lord: the yoke of the Saviour, which offers salvation. The Lord is speaking in these verses, and we read:

    ‘25At that time Jesus answered and said, I thank thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because thou hast hid these things from the wise and prudent, and hast revealed them unto babes. 26Even so, Father: for so it seemed good in thy sight. 27All things are delivered unto me of my Father: and no man knoweth the Son, but the Father; neither knoweth any man the Father, save the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son will reveal him. 28Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. 29Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. 30For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.’

    This is the desired response, for ‘the Lord…is not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance’ (2 Peter 3:9). But from Matthew 12 throughout the remainder of the gospel, we begin to see evidence of the second response, the damnable response: the yoke of self-righteousness. We begin to see many (particularly the Pharisees) who reject Christ, and who seek to destroy Him. And we see the eventual crucifixion of Christ taking place due (humanly speaking) to those who responded to Him with hostility.

    Today, I want to give a quick overview of Matthew 12, and then zone in on Matthew 12:1-9. I want to teach today on ‘Going to Church with Jesus’
     
  16. Gerhard Ebersoehn

    Gerhard Ebersoehn
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2004
    Messages:
    8,869
    Likes Received:
    3
    Overview


    As we take an overview of Matthew 12, there are three major things that stand out, which are imperative to understand if we will grasp this chapter.


    The Major Context

    The context of this chapter is set for us in Matthew 11. In Matthew 11, we meet some people who refused to humble themselves and use their opportunity to take Christ’s yoke upon themselves. These people are now in a tense conflict with the Lord, and their contempt would eventually lead to deicide.

    We see here the principle that no one is neutral with the Lord Jesus Christ. Jesus Himself later said, ‘He that is not with me is against me; and he that gathereth not with me scattereth abroad’ (Matthew 12:30). Those who would not actively and positively respond to the gospel are effectively ‘shut out’ after this chapter. We see the Lord speaking later of the ‘unpardonable sin’. He says that those who had openly rejected Him in Matthew 11-12 had committed ‘blasphemy against the Holy Ghost’, and that would ‘not be forgiven [them], neither in this world, neither in the world to come’ (Matthew 12:31-32). The door was shut on these particular people from this point on. Because of the unique circumstances surrounding this particular sin, it is not possible for us to commit today, but these Pharisees had shut themselves out of the kingdom of God due to their rejection of Christ. In the days of Noah, the people had waited too long to respond, and when they likely wanted to get into the ark, it was too late: God had already shut the door. So too, these Pharisees had ‘stayed out of the ark’, and after this chapter, it was too late for them to change their minds.

    And so we see the major context as that of people who refused to embrace the Lord Jesus Christ, and the conflict that followed.


    The Major Characters


    As we consider this chapter, we see three major characters (or character groups).


    The Disciples

    The first group of characters that we see are the twelve disciples. These disciples are now in the position of learners. They begin to observe the Lord in public ministry, and learn of Him. They would learn of the reality of conflict: that it’s a part of life. They would learn of the reason for conflict: the Lordship of Jesus Christ. And they would learn of the response to conflict: of the hardships that would arise because of conflict.

    We would do well to observe the lives of the disciples at this point. We would do well to sit at the feet of Jesus Christ, and learn from Him and His Word: to learn how to face life and the hardships that life will throw at us. May we so learn.


    The Pharisees

    The next group of prominent characters that we see are the Pharisees. In Matthew 1-11, we read of the Pharisees only five times. But from Matthew 12 to the end of the book, we encounter them twenty-four times! The reason for this is that they became the main antagonists to the Lord for the larger part of His ministry.

    When we think of the Pharisees, we immediately think of a group of wicked men bent on destroying the Lord. To us, there is often nothing good about the Pharisees. Now Scripture certainly portrays them most often in a negative light, but it is both interesting and important to note the origin and history of this group.

    The Pharisees originated in the ‘intertestamental’ era. The group had its roots, though not formally, in the great Old Testament saint Ezra. Temple worship was beginning to become perverted, and true Judaism was beginning to fade. This concerned Ezra, and so he instituted the Pharisees as a group of men committed to the preservation of Judaism. The word ‘Pharisee’ means ‘separate’, and this is exactly what the Pharisees were: separatists. They started the synagogues as alternatives to the Temple. Again, Ezra initiated this. Essentially, the synagogues were started as a means of preserving the true worship of God. The priesthood had become corrupt and liberal, and so the Pharisees became an independent group of worshippers who reverted back to the pure worship of the one, true God.

    The Pharisees opposed Hellenism. When Alexander the Great conquered most of the known world (including Israel), he began to encourage the ‘Hellenisation’ of his conquered territories. Thus, Greek culture was introduced into other nations. This was obviously an abomination to any orthodox Jew, and the Pharisees strongly opposed the entrance of Greek culture and philosophy into Jewish thinking. When Antiochus Epiphenes came into power, he began to enforce his culture on the Jews. He forbade Jewish circumcision, Sabbath observances, feasts, etc. This led to the Maccabean wars, in which the Maccabeans were victorious in 164 B.C. The victory was the beginning of the Feast of Hanukkah.

    By 67 A.D. Pharisaism was in its ‘Golden Era’. Because of the opposition that they waged against Hellenism and false worship of God, they became extremely popular. By 67 A.D. they had political clout, social influence as well as religious impact. They had effectively become the neck that controlled the state. They had position, prestige and power, and this ultimately led to overbearing pride.

    Even by the time of Jesus Christ, the Pharisees still had much that was commendable. They had right doctrine. The Sadducees believed that ‘there is no resurrection, neither angel nor Spirit’, whereas ‘the Pharisees confess both’ (Acts 23:8). They used to bind Scripture on their foreheads and to their wrists in phylacteries. Theologically, Jesus and Paul were closer to the Pharisees than any other group!

    The Pharisees were passionate about right Bible interpretation. They revered the Word of God, they studied it, memorised it, and sought to accurately interpret and apply the Scriptures. They were so concerned that people obey God’s Word that they enforced a long list of their own rules to keep people from breaking the Ten Commandments!
     
  17. Gerhard Ebersoehn

    Gerhard Ebersoehn
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2004
    Messages:
    8,869
    Likes Received:
    3
    The Pharisees had a righteous lifestyle. Jesus said to His disciples, ‘I say unto you, That except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven’ (Matthew 5:20). They sought pure worship and prayer life. They tithed of absolutely everything that they had. When Jesus spoke to them of their tithing he noted that they ‘pay tithe of mint and anise and cummin’ (Matthew 23:23). The Pharisees went as far as to tithe of their spices!

    Many Pharisees were good men. The apostle Paul was at one time a Pharisee. Paul’s discipler, Gamaliel, was well-known in the Jewish community. He was a good man and a Pharisee. Nicodemus was a Pharisee who followed Christ.

    The truth is, the Pharisees, in many ways, were like a lot of good, Bible-believing Christians today! I can just look at our own church and see how much like the Pharisees we are. Brackenhurst Baptist Church is filled with people who have right doctrine, who are passionate about right Bible interpretation and who lead righteous lifestyles. You cannot fault the Pharisees for any of these things. However, they did have some problems.

    The basic problem was that their strength became their weakness. The positives became a basis for their negative: pride. Their positives became the basis for self-righteousness and self-sufficiency, hence Christ’s harsh words to them. Tom Hovestel had this to say about the Pharisees: ‘The problem was not that they were so far from the truth, but that they were so close’.

    The question to ask ourselves at this point is: do we identify with the Pharisees, or do we immediately pit ourselves against them? Are they a picture to us, or are they a mirror? Do they explain our conflict with Christ? Are we like them? Do we [have] a form of godliness, but [deny] the power thereof’ (2 Timothy 3:5)? Or do they exemplify those with whom we have conflict? Can we relate to Christ? Are we living in a way that is pleasing to the Lord, and thus experiencing conflict with the Pharisees of today? Let us examine our lives in light of the Pharisees and see which side of the coin we are on.


    The Lord


    Our third major Character in this chapter is the Lord Jesus Christ. If you have a Bible with the words of Christ in red, you will notice that much of Matthew 12 is printed in red. The Lord is the predominant speaker throughout this chapter. Jesus Christ gets in the last word, and we had better listen! As we listen to His words in this chapter, we will be able to learn from the Master how to handle the conflict that we will face in this world.

    As we approach this chapter, we need to have the prayer, ‘We would see Jesus’ (John 12:21). We need to look to Christ, listen to Him, and follow Him in all His words and His ways.


    The Major Criticisms

    Also in this chapter, we see three major criticisms that stand out concerning the Lord’s ministry. First, in Matthew 12:1-21, we see criticism over the Sabbath. The Pharisees are here focusing on the rules of the Sabbath. In Matthew 12:22-37, we see criticism with regards to the spirits. The Pharisees are here questioning the reality of the Lord’s authority over the evil spirits. Finally, in Matthew 12:38-50, we see criticism over the sign of the Lord’s authority. Here they are seeking revelation from God concerning His approval of Christ’s ministry.

    You and I will face the same conflicts and the same critics if we will ‘live godly in Christ Jesus’ (2 Timothy 3:12). Hence, it is important for us to understand this chapter if we will know how to properly deal with such things. And in seeking to understand this chapter, we will begin with a study of Matthew 12:1-9, looking at going to church with Jesus.
     
  18. Gerhard Ebersoehn

    Gerhard Ebersoehn
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2004
    Messages:
    8,869
    Likes Received:
    3
    Going To Church With Jesus


    As this chapter opens, we see Jesus ‘on the sabbath day’ (Matthew 12:1). And we see Him heading for the ‘synagogue’ (Matthew 12:9). In today’s vernacular, this would be Jesus going to church. And with the Lord, we see the twelve disciples, on their way to church with Jesus. As we examine the experience of the apostles on their way to church with Jesus, we find three wonderful truths that can encourage us in our lives today.


    Going To Church With Jesus Is A Liberating Experience

    Matthew 12:1-2 says, ‘1At that time Jesus went on the sabbath day through the corn; and his disciples were an hungred, and began to pluck the ears of corn, and to eat. 2But when the Pharisees saw it, they said unto him, Behold, thy disciples do that which is not lawful to do upon the sabbath day’. These two verses teach us that it is an extremely liberating experience to go to church with Jesus.


    Liberation From Legalistic Work

    The Sabbath Day was intended by God to be a wonderful day of rest for His people. Of all the Old Testament commandments, the Sabbath Day commandment is the longest. This is what God had to say about His expectations concerning the Sabbath Day:

    ‘8Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy. 9Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work: 10But the seventh day is the sabbath of the Lord thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates: 11For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the Lord blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it.’

    The Pharisees, however, had taken the Sabbath Day and turned it from a joy into a burden. This they did by implementing a long list of extra-biblical rules to help enforce the Sabbath law. Once again, they cannot be faulted for their desire to see the Sabbath faithfully observed, but they did go a little overboard. R. Kent Hughes, in his book, Disciplines of Grace, has this to say about the Sabbath Day:

    ‘By the time of the first coming of Jesus Christ, the fourth commandment had become the unintended basis for exotic legalism. To ensure that no work was done on the Sabbath, the religious leaders of the day had devised thirty-nine clarifications of the law, each with categories capable of endless subdivisions.

    One category forbade the carrying of burdens, and hedged it with minute prohibitions for every situation. Anything equal to or heavier than a dried fig was deemed to be a burden. Hence, it was permissible to carry half a dried fig on the Sabbath, unless you put it down and then picked it up again, thus doubling the weight to a full fig and so breaking the Sabbath law!

    Similarly, if you were holding a piece of fruit, and you happened to extend your hand into another place, and the Sabbath began at that moment, you would have to drop that piece of fruit, otherwise you would be breaking the Sabbath by transporting a burden from one place to another.

    Picking up a child was allowed, provided the child’s hands were first examined to ensure that he was holding nothing, for if he was, it was considered as carrying a burden. Unfortunately, false teeth were not permitted on the Sabbath, because they might fall out, and the poor denture-wearer might be tempted to bend down and pick them up again, thus sinning against the Sabbath (dentures weigh more than a dried fig).


    Another category prohibited travel on the Sabbath. The rabbis defined a permissible Sabbath day’s journey as two thousand cubits (approximately 9km). To walk one centimetre further was a blatant defiance of the Sabbath law. However, if a rope was tied across one’s street creating an eruv, then, legally, that entire street was considered one house, so you could travel 9km beyond the end of the rope.

    One of the largest of the thirty-nine amendments was a category dealing with guarding oneself against labour. Here, women were forbidden to gaze into a mirror on the Sabbath, as they might discover a grey hair, and be tempted to pluck it out, thus engaging in labour. Whilst eating, a radish could be dipped in salt, but not for too long, otherwise you would be considered to be involved in the work of pickling a radish. Spitting was permitted on the Sabbath, as long as it was into one’s handkerchief, or on a rock. It was unlawful, however, to spit on the ground, because someone might inadvertently scuff the spittle and the earth with his shoe, thereby ploughing and cultivating the earth!’

    The Pharisees had made church into a drag! What God had intended as a restful, joyous day of worship had been turned into a burdensome day of ‘watching one’s back’! F.F. Bruce states that the Sabbath was intended as ‘God’s holiday to His subjects’. Hendrickson says that it was meant as ‘a day of true freedom, a day of rejoicing, a day of rendering service of love to each and to all; and by worshipping God above everything else’. But God’s wonderful intentions had been marred by the Pharisees’ burdens.
     
  19. Gerhard Ebersoehn

    Gerhard Ebersoehn
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2004
    Messages:
    8,869
    Likes Received:
    3
    God had intended the Sabbath to be a day of remembrance and reflection, and thus repentance. The result would be rest, refreshment and renewal. The problem was that the Pharisees had turned it into a man-centred rather than God-centred day! The focus became self-sufficiency rather than God-sufficiency. They turned the focus to self-righteousness rather than God’s righteousness. And thus, in classic Pharisee style, the apostles were accused of working on the Sabbath because they had casually plucked ears of corn from a field through which they were walking.

    The Pharisees surely believed that they were acting according to God’s expectations when they made this accusation. In Exodus 34:21, we read, ‘Six days thou shalt work, but on the seventh day thou shalt rest: in earing time and in harvest thou shalt rest’. God’s command was explicit. The Jews were to rest on the Sabbath day – even in harvest time. They were to rest on the seventh day, and simply trust God to take care of the reaping. God assured them that if they obeyed, they would not lose out on any of the harvest. They were not to harvest on the Sabbath day. The question is: were the disciples harvesting by plucking the ears of corn?

    The Pharisees certainly thought that they were. By plucking the corn, they were reaping! As they rubbed it with their hands, they were threshing! And as they blew lightly on it to get rid of the chaff before eating, they were winnowing! There was no doubt! They had worked on the Sabbath Day, and Jesus had done nothing to stop them! He was thus guilty of breaking the fourth commandment! To the Pharisees, the disciples ‘were now eating their ill-gotten grain’ (Hendrickson)!

    However, an important question must be considered: why did the Lord not stop them? He was walking with them; surely He saw what they were doing? If this was against God’s commandments, then why did He allow it? The answer is simple: they were doing nothing wrong! God had never forbidden this! In fact, in the Old Testament, God had said that you were not to stop a hungry man on a journey from plucking corn from your field and eating. The only ‘law’ that the disciples had broken was the man-made law of the Pharisees. The Pharisees had placed a tremendous yoke on the Jews when it came to the Sabbath Day, but Christ had removed this yoke, and had called people to take His yoke upon them! Note the words of the Lord concerning the scribes and Pharisees:

    ‘2The scribes and the Pharisees sit in Moses' seat: 3All therefore whatsoever they bid you observe, that observe and do; but do not ye after their works: for they say, and do not. 4For they bind heavy burdens and grievous to be borne, and lay them on men's shoulders; but they themselves will not move them with one of their fingers.’

    This legalistic attitude was still prevalent after the ascension of the Lord. In Acts 15, the early church is faced with a decision. Some of the Jews are saying that the Gentiles must be circumcised and obey the law of Moses if they will be saved. The elders and apostles gather together to discuss this, and the apostle James stands up and gives the verdict: the Gentiles are not bound by the law, for salvation is by grace alone through faith alone! And this is exactly what the Lord taught. As you read the gospels, you find time and time again that the Pharisees are confronting the Lord because of the Sabbath. They continually accused Him of breaking the Sabbath law. However, Christ never broke God’s Sabbath law (although He did sometimes break the Sabbath ‘law’ of the Pharisees). And those that followed Christ experienced this same liberation from legalistic works.

    The disciples, who went to church with Jesus, were liberated from lifelessness in church attendance. Is it not true that there is much lifelessness in many churches around the world today? I have been to Costa Rica, and seen men and women crawling up and down flights of stone stairs on their knees, until their knees bleed, all in the belief that this is pleasing to God. I have been to India and seen the Hindu Temples, with people and priests alike looking absolutely miserable as they carry out their daily, obligatory worship. I know of many people in ‘Christian’ churches who go to church, wondering if they are dressed right, if they are doing right, if they are saying the right things. There are so many churches today whose members just go through the motions of ‘going to church’, but with utter lifelessness.

    My brother-in-law pastors a church in a city called Rustenburg, about two hours northwest of Johannesburg. His church is fairly young, and at this point, they own no building of their own. The church is currently held in a crèche owned by the Jewish synagogue in the city. The synagogue is renting the building to the church because they need to money to keep the synagogue open. My brother-in-law tells me that the synagogue is dying. There are hardly any worshippers there on the Sabbath. They barely have enough faithful Jewish men in the city to constitute a synagogue (a synagogue is only officially constituted if there are at least ten Jewish men in the community attending the synagogue). Here is a Jewish synagogue, the ‘church’ of a religion who claims to worship the one, true God, yet there is total lifelessness in the ‘church’.

    Lack of praising and lack of passion are sad truths in many churches around the globe today. Yet this is merely because people are not going to church with Jesus. These disciples, who went to church with Jesus, were released from the lifelessness of mere religion.

    The disciples, going to church with Jesus, were also liberated from lovelessness. As the disciples are on their way to church with the Lord, the Pharisees object to their picking of the corn: ‘Behold, thy disciples do that which is not lawful to do upon the sabbath day’ (Matthew 12:2). The Lord responds with Scripture, ‘But if ye had known what this meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice, ye would not have condemned the guiltless’ (Matthew 12:7). He is quoting here from Hosea 6:6, which says, ‘For I desired mercy, and not sacrifice; and the knowledge of God more than burnt offerings’. The Lord then goes on to heal the man with the withered hand, much to the horror of the legalistic Pharisees.

    The disciples are watching all this, observing the manner of their Lord. They see the utter lovelessness of the Pharisees, who react with anger to the Lord’s healing of the man’s hand on the Sabbath. Yet they see also the compassion of their Master as He ignores the man-made rules of the Pharisees in order to show compassion to those who need compassion. In the Pharisees, they observe the epitome of hatred and legalism; in their Lord, they observe the epitome of love and liberty. And after the ascension, we see that they follow the example of their Lord:
     
  20. Gerhard Ebersoehn

    Gerhard Ebersoehn
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2004
    Messages:
    8,869
    Likes Received:
    3
    ‘42And they continued stedfastly in the apostles' doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers. 43And fear came upon every soul: and many wonders and signs were done by the apostles. 44And all that believed were together, and had all things common; 45And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need. 46And they, continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart, 47Praising God, and having favour with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved.’
    (Acts 2:42-47)

    These disciples, who had before always been taught by the Pharisees, now see the love of God in the Lord Jesus Christ, and after He ascends to His Father, they follow His example of love. You see, those who go to church without Jesus will show no love. They will desire no relationships in the church. They will not be involved in ministry. They will not be involved in prayer and giving. They will show little caring for the brethren. Rather, they will display a critical, condemning spirit.

    However, those who go to church with Jesus will exemplify the love of Christ. They will be liberated from the lovelessness of mere religion, and display the love that is evidence of an intimate relationship with the Son of God.

    We also see that these disciples were liberated from living a lie. Once the Lord had healed the man with the withered hand, ‘the Pharisees went out, and held a council against him, how they might destroy him’ (Matthew 12:14). They claimed to know God, but in fact, they rejected Him openly. They were living a lie, claiming to be right with God, yet plotting to murder Him! When Christ cast out demons, the Pharisees immediately claimed that He was doing it in the power of Satan!

    The disciples, on the other hand, followed the Lord. They saw Him: His compassion, His love, His mercy. And they confessed Him as ‘the Christ, the Son of the living God’ (Matthew 16:16). Unlike the Pharisees, they were not living a lie, for they were following the One who was truth incarnate.

    Those who go to church without Jesus live a lie. They state, “I’ll have a relationship with God…but on my own terms!” There are those who claim that they would believe, if only they had more evidence. Yet God has given us all the evidence we need. He has given us the Lord Jesus Christ, the Truth of God, and those who follow Him will be liberated from living a lie.

    The apostles went to church with Jesus, and they were liberated from legalistic works.


    Liberation Unto Liberty Of Worship

    The yoke of Christ meant that there would be true meaning in ‘church attendance’. ‘Church attendance’ would now be coupled with life, with love and with truth.

    The disciples were now liberated from false religion. For years, they had likely heard mostly the teaching of the Pharisees. Perhaps many of them had even followed the Pharisees in many ways. But now they followed Christ, and the false religion of the Pharisees was a thing of the past. They had received new instruction from the Lord, and they understood what ‘pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father’ was (James 1:27). Jesus Christ had taught them of this pure religion:

    ‘31Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on him, If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed; 32And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free. 33They answered him, We be Abraham's seed, and were never in bondage to any man: how sayest thou, Ye shall be made free? 34Jesus answered them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Whosoever committeth sin is the servant of sin. 35And the servant abideth not in the house for ever: but the Son abideth ever. 36If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.’

    As we look back over church history, we see many examples of this liberation. I think of Martin Luther, who grew up Catholic, and was under bondage to sin for many years. He struggled for a long time with false religion, until the Lord one day, in His grace, saved Luther, and liberated him from the false religion with which he had for so long been trying to please God. Going to church with Jesus will free you from false religion.

    Going to church with Jesus will also free you from the fear of men. As you realise that you are there for Jesus Christ, you will care little about what people think of you frequency of church attendance. You will care little about how many people look at you when you say ‘Amen’ to the preaching. You will care little what people think if you want to raise your hands during the singing, if you want to weep, or pray, or give testimony, or laugh and rejoice. Those who go to church without Jesus fear men, and are concerned with all these things. But going to church with Jesus will liberate you from the fear of man.

    Going to church with Jesus will also liberate you from an over-scrupulous conscience. Those who do not go to church with Jesus often view God as a ‘cosmic policeman’, standing over their shoulders, waiting to pounce on them for the smallest thing that they do wrong. But those who go to church with Jesus understand God as their loving Father, desiring the best for them, and willing them to be conformed into the image of His dear Son, the Lord Jesus Christ.

    And so we see that going to church with Jesus is an extremely liberating experience. The disciples experienced this liberation when they went to church with Jesus and you and I can, too, experience this same liberation if we will go to church with Jesus.
     

Share This Page

Loading...