WE WANT TO GET RIGHT BACK INTO OUR MESSAGE DEALING WITH THE EIGHTH DAY, AND SHOWING WHY NEW TESTAMENT CHRISTIANS CHOSE TO WORSHIP ON THE FIRST DAY OF THE WEEK.
We are on this subject, “The Eighth Day;” and I realize some of you probably have relatives in the Adventist type of belief, but I feel that we need to deal with it because of so much confusion associated with various teachings. There are Seventh Day Adventists, and then there is what they call the Pentecostal Adventists. I am not picking on any one or on any thing: I am just trying my best to present a message of truth to help those who have a need to hear it. I will say this though, Some of their preachers, or historians know a lot about church history, but my purpose in this message is this, If we have a message of truth, then this is a message that has got to bring the loose ends together, of all that the Reformation period brought into focus in that hour. It has got to bring all of the loose ends of those Bible truths and tie all of them together, so that Christianity can once again be like it was in the days of the early Church, as seen in action in the book of Acts. There was no such thing as Adventists in the early Church age. Adventism is just another step of what we would say the Reformation period brought on. As I said earlier, the Adventists have their Sabbath. Jehovah Witnesses have their Millennium. The Pentecostal oneness people have Jesus only; and on and on these arguments go; but in many instances their arguments amount to very little. They only separate people into so many different groups, and each group blends their mind’s into a block supporting a certain theory. Their mind’s become so numbed to the reality of anything else in the Bible, you may as well forget about trying to change them. Only God Himself can do that. I want to read something here, from this Adventist book, just to show you why I have chosen this time, to be sure I had enough information, both from history, as well as from the Anti-Nicene Fathers to vindicate our stand. Here is a book they have released. They are saying that the World Council of Churches and all this organized religion is getting ready to make a law that Sunday is the official day for Christians to worship. They are saying that it is the devil’s mark. I am going to read this, to give you an opportunity to see what Adventism really is saying now. The author of the book says this, and I hope you will listen to it.
“We are sealed in the forehead. His law is in our hearts under the New Covenant. (The New Covenant is pointing you to back to Jeremiah 31:31-33, where it says a new covenant will I make with the house of Israel after those days. The first covenant was the ten commandments at Sinai, along with the statutes and judgments that go with that to complete the whole thing they call the Law.) This is the covenant I will make with them after those days saith the Lord. I will put my laws into their hearts and in their minds will I write them.” (They take that from Hebrews 10:16.) The Holy Spirit places the seal of God in our foreheads when we choose it. The forehead contains the frontal lobe. This section of the brain is where our conscience is. It means you have it in your conscience. You believe in it. You are loyal to it. Just as the government ruler uses his seal of government to enforce the laws of the land, God uses His seal to enforce His law. The beast will use his seal, or mark, to try to enforce his law in place of God’s. Where will you find the seal of God with its three parts? In the center of His law. Take a close look. Remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy. (Naturally they are pointing you back to Saturday, the Jewish Sabbath.) “Six days shalt thou labor and do all thy work, but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord thy God. In it thou shalt do no work. For 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.” Exodus 20:8-11. This is the only place in the Bible where you will find God’s seal. Here are the three parts of the seal: His name, the Lord; His Title, thy God creator; His territory, heaven and earth, and sea and all that in them is. That is fantastic. No wonder Satan has worked so hard to hide the truth of the sacred Sabbath from us. It is God’s sign. You may ask, Is the Sabbath really the seal of God? (Now I want to stress this, because all through the book they are constantly trying to convince the reader that the Jewish Sabbath is the seal of God.) Look at Ezekiel 20:12. Moreover also I gave them my Sabbath to be a sign between me and them, that they might know that I am the Lord that sanctifies them. And hallow my Sabbaths. Know that I am the Lord your God. Ezekiel 20:20. The word sign means the same as seal. See Romans 4:11. What could be clearer. The seal of God is His Sabbath.”
END OF READING
As I said, I did not read that to cast any reflection toward any individual Adventist person, but I want to say this to them, You are just like the Jehovah Witness people, you have become blinded by one thing you read in the Bible. They preach a Millennium; and there is going to be a Millennium for sure, but the sad thing about it is, If we are not right in all other respects of what the Bible teaches, just to believe in a Millennium is not going to make you a partaker of it: That is reserved for those who are capable of receiving a revelation of all of God’s great plan of redemption, and then walking in the light of it. For people professing to be Christians, to keep Saturday, the Jewish Sabbath, as a day of rest and worship, is actually missing the whole point. There is no more salvation in that, than if you just took a long walk. I will go into a part of this message and try to show you that we either get it all right, or we end up getting it all wrong. Keeping the Sabbath, (which was out of the old covenant) when there were other things just as mandatory as keeping the Sabbath, makes us guilty of absolutely twisting the Bible, the holy scriptures to our own destruction. That is why these scriptures here in Leviticus and Ezekiel are important: They show that the Lord rose on the first day of the week, not on the Jewish Sabbath. Then when we go into the feast of trumpets, which takes place seven months later, in the fall of the year, we find that right here, is where God ordained the eighth day. What did this eighth day speak of? It is truly the day the Lord rose from the dead. This eighth day speaks of the fact that when this second period comes, when Israel is brought back, and Israel is saved, (not the whole nation, but those that are predestined) the world goes into the Millennium, which is its Sabbath. It is the Sabbath for the rest of creation and mankind, as he lives through an era of a thousand years, when Satan is bound, and mankind is free from the temptations and effects of the devil. However, there will be an element of mortal mankind that will pass out of this era of time into the beginning of the Millennium, and they have a special purpose. These are the people that the Lord purposely saves alive to repopulate the planet earth. In that era of time the devil is bound, and there will be no saloons, no jail houses, no dope peddlers and no one taking a gun and shooting at innocent people, like we see today. Really though, because there is within the flesh of those mortals that are carried over into the Millennium, the hereditary nature of all mankind, there will still remain that trait of sin which we commonly refer to as the old human nature. Therefore unless there is something there to keep that under control, there would be times that the human nature would rise up and act up. Satan will be bound, and Jesus, along with His bride, will rule over all mortals with a rod of iron. Disobedience will not be tolerated. The Millennium itself, being the seventh day, is a thousand years in duration. It is a dispensational day. We can see then, that for six thousand years, mankind on this earth has labored. He has toiled, he has wrestled with himself and with the devil. Look at the death picture, look at the graveyards, and the battlefields where many have lost their lives. Look at the blood that has been shed on this planet in these six days of time. Well, the Millennium gives mankind a rest from all of that. It is true, Christ will rule with a rod of iron, and that authority brings everything under obedience until the thousand years have expired: Then Satan will be loosed for a little season to test all of those born during that time. During this Millennium reign, seeing that it is a Sabbath, what is the purpose of it? It is a time when the planet earth itself is going to be dealt with, to bring it through a redemption process. Yes, there will still be graveyards, and there will still be that part of wicked hell in the heart of the earth during that time; but when the Millennium is over, it plainly tells you in the later part of the 20th chapter of Revelation, that the devil, Satan, is loosed for a little season. What is this little season for? Like we said, It is just to test those mortal, subject people that have never been tested by his devices before. If God allowed this great mass of people that will be propagated through this thousand years, to pass into the eternal age without ever being tested by Satan, you would have to feel that God is unjust, knowing what people of this era have had to be subjected to and overcome. God is not unjust though, and He will allow Satan to test every one of them; and after that, He will judge those who are deceived by Satan’s devices. That is why Satan will be loosed for a little short period. He will go out upon the breadth of the earth, like it says in Revelation 20, verses 7-9, which reads as follows, 7 “And when the thousand years are expired, Satan shall be loosed out of his prison, 8 And shall go out to deceive the nations which are in the four quarters of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together to battle: the number of whom is as the sand of the sea. 9 And they went up on the breadth of the earth, and compassed the camp of the saints about, and the beloved city: (which is Jerusalem, the headquarters of the earthly Bride.) and fire came down from God out of heaven, and devoured them.” That is how it turns out: God sends fire to devour those that are deceived by the devil, so all that are left alive then will live forever as time ceases to be reckoned any longer, in the eternal age. It tells there in the scriptures, that a great army will follow Satan, an army of deceived people. The fact that a mass of people out of this society that has propagated through the Millennium reign will have listened to Satan, just shows how real these hereditary traits are; and it is Satan’s aim, to try and take control over the earth, from the Lord Jesus Christ and His Bride. You will notice though, there is not a land based war ever fought after the Millennium. There are no manufacturers of guns still in business: All of that will have been done away with at the end of this present era. When you read the book of Revelation the right way, God lets that mass of deceived people go far enough to establish where they stand, before He consumes them in that great fire from heaven. You need not feel sorry for them, because they prove they have been deceived by the devil, when they surround the camp of the saints to do battle and help Satan in his attempt to take control of the whole earth. That does not mean all of those mortals will be deceived though: only part of them will be. Many of those will never follow Satan; because they have lived under a righteous rule all their life and chosen to adopt that way instead of rebelling and joining Satan in an overthrow attempt. God has always allowed every individual the privilege of choosing which road of life they will follow; and He has always had a way of getting the attention of those who were traveling the wrong road ignorantly. That is why many of us are under His great shelter and have the seal of His Spirit today: He dealt with us when we were wallowing in sin, ignorant of true righteousness, and put a hunger in us to Know Him who died for us at Calvary, went into hell and set the righteous captives free, then arose from the dead claiming victory over death, hell and destruction, so that all who believe in Him may have eternal life and enjoy that same victory. That is the heritage of all who are saved by the blood of Jesus Christ and sealed by the Holy Spirit, so that we can never be lost again. The Bible has always made it clear what the end will be for those who reject and rebel against the Creator and refuse His great plan of redemption: fire awaits them when their day of reckoning arrives. That is why fire proceeds out of heaven and devours those who join Satan in his last attempt to overthrow the power of God and rule the earth his way. There is not the sound of atomic weapons or jet airplanes in combat. No. Fire immediately falls from heaven and devours that element of deceived, misled people. That brings to an end all of man’s efforts to go against the Creator. Then the great white throne judgment is set up. Jesus has taken His delegated place on this throne to execute judgment according to the foreordained plan of God. This is when all the wicked stand before the Supreme Court of heaven. The Bride of Jesus is positioned around this great white throne to participate in what takes place there. Right here, is what the apostle Paul was speaking of when he said, (1st Cor. 6:2-3) “Do ye not know that the saints shall judge the world? and if the world shall be judged by you, are ye unworthy to judge the smallest matters? 3 Know ye not that we shall judge angels? how much more things that pertain to this life?” Here is where hell will give up the wicked dead and the graveyards will give up the wicked bodies. The righteous have already gone out of there. Notice what that does, when hell itself gives up the wicked spirits and they are united with the graves or ocean, wherever the bodies are, with those bodies, so that the masses of the wicked, all the way back to the day of Cain, will appear before this great judgment throne of God to have the final judgment passed upon them. It is the Supreme Court of heaven handing out the final judgment and punishment to all that will stand there to be judged. The Bride, along with all the righteous saints of every age, and all the righteous angels are there. This great judgment takes place, to finally cleanse the earth of all traces of sin. The Bible says, (Revelation 20:15) “And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.” Here is the question, Who are those standing there, whose names are in the book of life? That is pointing to those people born during the Millennium reign, that lived and walked in righteousness, obeying what the Lord has taught them in their hour of time, but those who were deceived, there they stand being judged with the other dead and cast into the lake of fire. When this final judgment is completed, and every spirit of the devil has been brought forth to be judged by the saints, the saints that have been tempted by these spirits, then death and hell together is cast into the lake of fire. After that, there is no more need for the place called hell. To the critics of Bro. William Branham, those who criticized him for saying that hell is not eternal, I ask you straight out, Where is hell when this judgment is completed? Right now, it is in the heart of the earth, holding the wicked dead until the judgment of the great white throne, but when that judgment is finished, there is no more need for hell; because all of its inhabitants have been cast into the lake of fire, and there will never be any more occupants for such a place. Is it not written, that hell delivered up the dead that were in it and they were cast into the lake of fire? That is in verses 13 and 14, of that same chapter. “And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works. 14 And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.” That gives us a look at the final consequences of sin and rebellion. In Hebrews, hell is called Hades. It is a hot spot, a place of torment for the wicked, but just a holding place for the righteous dead until Christ Jesus went down there and took the righteous dead to a heavenly paradise. He took out of hell, that part of paradise where Lazarus was, that you see in the gospels, where the rich man was in torment in one side of hell, while Lazarus was in Abraham’s bosom, in the area called paradise down there. When Jesus overcame death and hell, at that time, He took all the righteous spirits out of there, resurrected them and took them to a paradise in glory. That only leaves in hell the wicked spirits, and their bodies still in their graves. They will remain so until the end. This is why, if hell ceases to exist, then it has an end. The lake of fire, nobody knows where it is. There is not a thing in it yet; but at that time, when that great white throne judgment is set, all whose names were not found written in the book of life, will be cast into the lake of fire. That is where all the evil spirits, the wicked people of every age go to. If the lake of fire had a beginning to serve this purpose, it is to eventually destroy the existence of not only the spirit being of angels, but also the body and spirit being of fallen human beings. That is why Bro. William Branham said hell had a beginning, and it has an end. The lake of fire has a beginning, it too will have an end. After it serves its purpose, then the spirit of all this, after it has lost its identity, then the spirit goes back to the Creator, who gave it life. I do not know why that should confuse people. Some people think God reached over here and took a bunch of components and stirred up a batch of stuff and made angels out of that. That is a carnal way to try to look at it. Keep in mind, God Himself, is the Creator. He is a life giver to everything that has life, and that is why the apostle Paul stood on Mars’ Hill one day and said, That is the God I want to speak to you about: For in Him we live, we move, we have our being, our existence. When you see a grasshopper sitting on a blade of wheat out there, just keep in mind, that grasshopper has a certain amount of life in it. God did not mix up a batch of something and stir up the spirit of a grasshopper. That is the way He expressed Himself in that part of His creation. When you see a worm crawling across the pathway somewhere, the life of that worm that makes it wiggle, also came from God. That is how God expressed His sovereignty, His creating power, in that form of life. If we look at it in the right way, when sin and all evil has been judged according to the word of God, and hell and the lake of fire has served their purpose, then there will be no more need for either of them. The total redemptive work of Christ brings it all to an end. That is why we can say, When the Millennium is over and the great white throne judgment completed, this planet that we live on will have absolutely been cleansed from everything that has defiled it in the past six thousand years. No more death, no more sorrow, no more crying, no more heartaches. It is ended. This is why the Millennium is typed by the Jewish Sabbath. It is a rest. If God rested on the seventh day of His creating work, then He gives mankind, in the Mosaic Law, six twenty four hour days to work, but on the seventh he should have a physical rest. That sacred Sabbath established in the Jewish Law, only set a type, that one day, there will be a Sabbath, not only for the physical part of mankind, but also for the spiritual part of mankind. That is why the righteous will rule with Christ throughout His Millennial reign. It is a dispensational day, a day when Satan is bound, disease is bound and the whole earth is in the process of being made new through a redemptive and cleansing process. Think of it, through that thousand year reign we will not need police forces, we will not need any undertakers nor doctors. The planet will be going through that process of gradually being renewed, redeemed back to its original state, to remove the effects of sin, disease and everything that has defiled it. That is exactly why, because of the Jewish Law, Jesus did not rise on that seventh day, which is the Sabbath of the Jewish law. He rose on the first day of the starting week. Then when we come to that seventh month, which puts you into the fall of the year, that speaks of the time when God will bring the Jewish people back from dispersion, back from being scattered all over the world. There, is when it speaks specifically of the eighth day, and from then on, that eighth day puts you right on the first day, and the first day remains that way. In other words the first day speaks of the fact that everything has been redeemed and restored back to its original. That is why there is the eighth day. That is why He rose on that day: It speaks of a new beginning.
WHAT ABOUT KEEPING THE LAW?
I want to take you into the book of Galatians and look at some more scriptures that will add to what we want to establish. In this thing of the Law, no one is authorized to take just one thing out of the Jewish Law and make it mandatory for everyone to measure up to that. The Bible plainly tells us that the Law was added because of sin. Was it sin just in the Jewish race? No. It was sin in all mankind. It is this mortal flesh and the fact that we are born with a nature to be indifferent to God, that caused God to establish that law. That is why it says in the scriptures, there is none righteous, no not one. All have sinned, meaning all have been born under the penalty of sin and come short of the glory of God. Again it says, there is none righteous, no not one. There is none that really seeks after God. He can have certain knowledge of God, but to really seek after God, he does not do that. As Paul said in the Roman letter, The Law was added because of sin. In other words, it makes sin show itself. It makes the nature of man show itself. Then, under the Law, everything one does is mandatory: Thou shalt not, thou shalt not, and Thou shalt do thus and so. This is why it also says in Romans 10:4, “For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth.” That means this: You cannot reach back here in this Law and play with the different ten commandments and suddenly pick up the fourth commandment and say, Oh, that is the sacred day. If I will just observe that, I am alright. It only set a type, so you are not alright, if you return to something that was just a type for something better, something that true believers are already partaking of. In the era when the law was still in effect, before the better covenant was revealed, God imputed righteousness to those who lived under it, for their obedience to it; but it did not mean He has saved them and given them eternal life because they were made good enough like that. Turn with me to Galatians now, and we will see what Paul had to say about looking back. I read this earlier, but I want to refresh your memory. In the 4th chapter, 6th verse, I want to show you how the apostle Paul wrote in this letter to the Galatian church. Keep in mind, who it was that started this church. The apostle Paul started it. When this church was started by the ministry of Paul, he had already laid down the fact that they are Gentiles, saved by faith in Jesus Christ, and not through any works that they had done, However in Paul’s absence, someone has come along, just like we have in this day and hour, someone always trying to add a little here, and a little there to make our salvation experience more perfect. They specialize on seeing how many people they can convert to their ideas. Man, carnally, is guilty of looking at certain things from a fantastic viewpoint. So as Paul writes this letter, he is reminding the Galatians, You knew all of this when I first preached the gospel of Jesus Christ to you; so what has happened since then? “And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father. Wherefore thou art no more a servant, but a son; and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ.” He is actually saying, Galatians, you ought to thank God for what He has done for you. He gave you His Spirit, not because you are keeping a certain day or abstaining from meats, or this or that, but because you believed the gospel I preached to you. It is an act of God, imparting grace to you simply because you have faith to believe. “Howbeit then, (Now he is saying the following because of what he has heard about them, about what they have been converted to since then.) when ye knew not God, (He is pointing to their past life.) ye did service unto them which by nature are no gods. (In other words, you were pagans. You prayed to this idol, you prayed to that idol, you sacrificed to this or that and you were still without any knowledge of the true and living God.) But now, after that ye have known God, (In other words, it was my ministry that acquainted you with God.) or rather are known of God, how turn ye again to the weak (Notice how Paul speaks of the Law: He had a right to do this because he was a Jew himself.) and beggarly elements, whereunto ye desire again to be in bondage? Ye observe days, (plural, but it also consists of the Sabbaths) and months, (Think of it, in the first month of the spring of the year, here was the Passover season, followed by seven days of unleavened bread. We go then, to the seventh month of the year. That brings you to the fall of the year.) and times, and years.” Now go with me to the book of Colossians. We have read that already also, but I want to refresh your memory on what Paul is actually saying to these people here, because both of these letters are dealing with much the same kind of issue. I am going to pick up in the 12th verse of the 2nd chapter, and let you hear Paul speaking loud and clear to those Colossians. “Buried with Him in baptism, (That is why it is necessary that we be buried in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, that we may receive this benefit.) wherein also ye are risen with Him through the faith of the operation of God, who hath raised Him from the dead. And you, being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, hath He quickened together with Him, having forgiven you all trespasses; (Now notice what Paul says about the Law.) Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to His cross.” This is exactly why he said in the Roman letter, Christ is the end of the Law for righteousness to every one that believeth. Of course the Seventh Day Adventists will say, Does that mean you are not supposed to observe any day, as a day of rest and worship?. We are going to observe a day. That is why there is an eighth day. The eighth day is just as necessary as the seventh was, if you understand what I am talking about. The eighth day is what follows the seventh, and it speaks of the perfect day, the perfect age, the perfect era, where all sin has been eradicated. The planet has been redeemed. Nothing but righteousness goes into the eternal age and it remains like that, never to be altered. Let us continue on here and pay attention to all of what the apostle said to them. “And you, being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, hath he quickened together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses. (He is saying, All of this is accomplished through an act of faith on your part.) Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to His cross. Having spoiled principalities and powers, he made a show of them openly, triumphing over them in it. (Now he says this, and if he can say this to the Colossian church, then I have to say, That is what we have been restored to, back to the gospel of Paul, as he seeks to balance this thing out.) Let no man beguile you (deceive you, influence you) of your reward in a voluntary humility and worshiping of angels, intruding into those things which he hath not seen, vainly puffed up by his fleshly mind, And not holding the Head, from which all the body by joints and bands having nourishment ministered, and knit together, increaseth with the increase of God.” Now I especially want to dwell on the 15th and 16th verses, which show that the Law was nailed to the cross, to bring an end to it, “And having spoiled principalities and powers, He made a show of them openly, triumphing over them in it. Let no man therefore judge you (This is what Paul taught.) in meat, (He is not just talking about the Sabbath, he is talking about every mandatory thing that the Law had in it.) or in drink, or in respect of an holyday, or of the new moon, or of the Sabbath days: Which are a shadow of things to come.” Right here, is where this Sabbath day was spoken of so profoundly, but we find also, that there is the eighth day. What was it for? The Jews did not understand that eighth day; but the early Christians, after the resurrection of Christ, when the baptism of the Holy Ghost came, on the day of Pentecost, the early Church caught on to it. That is why I read from the Anti-Nicene Fathers, Barnabas, and Justin the martyr: They both explicitly declare that the Christians chose the first day of the week for worship. I believe it was Justin the martyr that said, “And on the day called Sunday, all who live in cities or in the, and the memoirs (meaning the gospels) of the apostles, or the writing country, gather together in one place s of the prophets are read, as long as time permits.” Those early Christians met for the reading of the epistles, and for exhorting one another, and for partaking of the Lord’s supper, and they did it on the first day of the week. Justin also said, “But Sunday is the day on which we all hold our common assembly, because it is the first day on which God, having wrought a change in the darkness and matter, made the world; and Jesus Christ our Savior on the same day rose from the dead.” Why did they not do that on the Jewish Sabbath? Because they had a revelation that the Seventh Day Adventist do not have. It was Barnabas, who stated that it was the early Church that saw the eighth day, what it meant, and it spoke of the beginning of a new creation. That is the part we want to see. I want to say again, We are saying these things as children of God who desire to walk in a true revelation. We are not saying these things to debase anyone, but to give everybody an opportunity to shake his thinking and begin to realize, you are saved by grace through faith; and not by keeping part of the Jewish Law. That does not mean that you are not going to somewhere, observe a rest day. You will, but what rest day will you observe? You are going to want to see and understand that it is the eighth day that spoke of better things to come. We are looking forward to an age, or an era of the world without sin, a world where everything remains in its beautiful state, because redemption has restored us to that. Now with this in mind, I want us to take 2nd Corinthians 5, and pay attention to an admonition of Paul. We will begin reading in the 15th verse, and on through the 18th verse. Let us notice how Paul speaks of this. “And that He died (speaking of Christ) for all, that they which live should not henceforth live unto themselves, (meaning the flesh) but unto Him which died for them, and rose again. Wherefore henceforth (from now on) know we no man after the flesh: yea, though we have known Christ after the flesh, yet now henceforth know we Him no more. Therefore if any man be in Christ, (How do you get in Christ? Through the baptism of the Holy Ghost.) he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to Himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation.” That goes to show that we are the product, not of the same old creation, but of a new creation. The Law was given because of sin, but the Law could not take away sin. It could not even correct it. But now in Christ, we are the beginning of something new. Let us take that to Romans 8:28-29. The same man who spoke back there in Corinthians is speaking here in Romans. “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose. For whom He did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He (the Son) might be the firstborn among many brethren.” Well what about Jesus the Christ? Was He just an ordinary man like you and me? Absolutely not. There was no sin, no guile in Him. He was a perfect man, P-E-R-F-E-C-T, without sin. Having no sin in Him, He lived among mankind and portrayed Himself in an image that God wanted every other man that has to be redeemed, to take a look at, and say, Father, help me to be just like Him. That is why, though in the flesh He had no sin, He was made to be sin for a specific purpose of The Father. It is written of that perfect man, a man who knew no sin, had no guile in Him, that God heaped upon that physical being the sins and transgression of the whole human race, all that would ever live in the world. The man was willing to lay down His life, shedding His blood for the redemption of you and me, and all of fallen mankind, at a time appointed of the Father, when the Law could not do a thing to eradicate our sin. How come one particular day has more meaning than another day? Well, when you are referring to the day Christians worship, the scriptures explain it; but beyond that you have to understand that most of man’s differences come down to a matter of the different ideas people get hold of when they try to serve God without a revelation, and they want to fuss about which idea is best. Anywhere you go in the world, you find the same thing. That is why one man will take circumcision, get on his horse, and away he goes. Another man will take meat eating, and away he goes. Another man will take the Sabbath day, and away he goes. That is not salvation. True salvation never was like that. Therefore with this in mind I believe we can say this, Christ was the beginning of something God had predetermined to do for mankind, something which the Law up until that hour, had not even touched. Why was Christ the beginning of this new thing God was going to do. He was the only man on earth that could make a sacrifice for sinful mankind that God would accept. That is why it says He was to be the firstborn among many brethren. This is why we can take that over into another epistle and it speaks of Christ being the firstborn from among the dead. He was designed by the Creator, to be the beginning of a new creation, and because of that He had to taste of death for every man, woman and child: He had to give His life, shed His own blood, and have our sins and reproaches all represented in His own physical body, in order to fulfill the purpose of God. He took this place willingly. Then when He died, the Bible says He went to hell, not to suffer, but to prove the Father was in Him and had given Him power to go into hell and take the keys of death and hell from Satan and say, Now I have come after those righteous spirits. That is why David wrote, in the Psalms, He will not leave His soul in hell, neither would He allow His holy one to see corruption. With this in mind, I believe we can begin to see that it is going to take something far greater than circumcision, meat eating, and observing the Sabbath to do for mankind what the Law could not do. This is exactly why it says Christ is the end of the Law for righteousness to those who are believers. That does not mean we take the ten commandments and throw them in the trash. If God has really convicted you of sin, then it means the Holy Spirit has come and done His work, because that is the only way true conviction ever comes upon anyone. He comes as a messenger to convict you, first of your sinful nature, showing us where we are so wrong, and how we need this Spirit of God in us, to help us follow the will and purpose of God. The Law could not give you the indwelling presence of the Holy Spirit. On the other hand, the revelation of God’s word that the Holy Spirit gives to us, causes us to want to take a good look at the Law that gave direction to the children of Israel. It is not that you have to observe this or that of it, like they did, it is just the fact you can say, I love God: He has done so much for me: He has taken away my stubbornness, He has taken away my addictions to the props of this world and given to me a life worth living. You might have been one with a foul mouth, God delivered you from that. We can be saved today, and we can experience a new change in our lives, but if we are not careful, many times the devil will throw something at us, and before you know it, you have worked yourself into a mental frenzy, and then that old temper is turned loose to make things even worse. There are people today, they come and sit in the church service, but before they get a mile from the church house they are into an argument about something. Instead of taking on the mind of Christ, they reach back into their past and allow that mind to take control. Salvation is a complete work: We ought not be found living like that any more. I am not pointing the finger to condemn people: I am just saying this, Do not ever think that being a Christian gives you freedom to fuss and criticize, and at times act like the devil himself. If you have the baptism of the Holy Spirit, something ought to begin to convict you, and say to you, Hey, you have said too much! The new birth is a means whereby God eliminates from us every part of that old nature that makes us want to sit and fuss and act ugly. Your young children growing up in that kind of atmosphere, where Mom and Dad are always fussing, will look at you and say, If this is what Christianity is, I don’t want any part of it. Who else in this world should be the children’s example, if not their parents? Must they look to the mayor of the city? Should the preacher be the only example they have to look to? No! It should be the Mom and Dad that brought them into the world. If they have really got salvation and the love of God in their heart’s, that should be what rules their lives, and that is what the children need to see. Well, I will say no more about that right now. Let us take this thought to the Colossian Epistle.
PEOPLE HAVE TO BE REMINDED
Paul is sending this letter to a body of saints at Colosse: reminding them of how they have been redeemed, actually translated into a kingdom. I am starting in the 12th verse, to show you how he first recognized the Father as he spoke to them about Christ Jesus. “Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light: 13 Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, (from the power Satan held over us, holding us in sin and unbelief. Who did that? The Father) and hath translated us into the kingdom of His dear Son: 14 In whom we have redemption through His blood, even the forgiveness of sins: (Now in this 15th verse, Paul speaks of Jesus, who He is.) 15 Who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of every creature: 16 For by Him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by Him, and for Him: 17 And He is before all things, and by Him all things consist. (Now he is still referring to the Father, the Creator of all things, but then his thought turns back to the Son.) 18 And He is the head of the body, the Church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things He might have the preeminence. 19 For it pleased the Father that in Him should all fulness dwell.” Of course that means that Jesus is the head over all things pertaining to the Church. It pleased the Father, to delegate all authority to His only begotten Son, but there comes a time, after total redemption is completed, that the Son delivers the redeemed kingdom back to the Father, and after that, He is known to all, as our Elder Brother. “Who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of every creature.” Saints, listen to me. We are two thousand years after the birth of the Church at Pentecost. That was the beginning of the process of the new creation. As Christ arose, to be the firstborn from among the dead, so He is the beginning of this creation of God. Not when He made the mountains, not when He made the lakes, but He is the beginning of the new creation which is wrought through redemption, not actually creating. Therefore He is the beginning of the new creation and as the Church was born on the day of Pentecost, that fulfilled exactly what it typed in Leviticus, because the Pentecostal Holy Ghost fell on the first day of the week, not on the Jewish Sabbath. As Jesus rose on the first day of the week, fifty days later, was the birth of the Church on the first day of the week. With that in mind, Paul speaks here, “For by Him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers.” You go on and read it, it says in the 18th verse, “Who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things He might have the preeminence.” Now I want to take you to Revelation 3, where John was on the Isle of Patmos. My purpose in reading this is to show you that this is why that eighth day is a day we must recognize, and we show it by worshiping on the first day of the week. Let me remind you that all of the Ante-Nicene fathers were mindful of the eighth day. They were those writers of Church history that lived prior to the Nicene Council, which was in 325 A.D. Many of them spoke of this eighth day in their writings. They spoke of it, the type that it portrayed. They said, It speaks of a better world to come. Once that era has come, then it is a world that has no end. It is a perfect day. That is the eighth day. That is exactly why the early Christians, not because it was mandatory, but because of a revelation they had, stated, We now set aside the first day of the week for worship. We will gather together and worship the Lord on that day. The Law was mandatory: It gave them a Sabbath that could not be changed, and not only a Sabbath day, but a long list of other things that those who keep the Law of Moses must observe. If you will just go back and read the various articles contained in the Law of Moses and imagine anyone trying to keep all of them, you will really thank God that you are living under grace instead of the Law. When we go to the 14th verse of chapter three, where we read what Christ spoke to the Laodicean Assembly, which typed this very age we are living in. “And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans (That is to you and me, because we are living in the Laodicean Church Age.) write: These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, (That is Jesus Christ.) the beginning of the creation of God. (When you read that, do not picture Jesus out there making rocks, mountains, rivers, lakes and all of that: God Himself did that. That is why in Paul’s writings to the Corinthians, in the 11th chapter, he speaks of how God is the head of Christ. Why? Because He is the Creator of everything that is in the universe. Jesus had nothing to do with any of that out there in natural creation. But this here is talking about another creation, a creation of human beings, a creation called the earth, that is stained with sin and redemption has to affect both man and the earth. That is why God has invested in Christ to be the beginning of the new creation, and that is exactly what He is. Therefore the beginning of the creation of God. This is exactly why the eighth day, set apart, denotes this. Let us read the rest of that chapter while we are here. It gives us a picture of the thinking of natural minded mankind in this age; and that is exactly what you have in places of authority in the denominational churches of the world.) 15 I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot. 16 So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth. 17 Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked: 18 I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eye salve, that thou mayest see. 19 As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent. 20 Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.” In this book from the Seventh Day Adventists that we have been reading from, they are saying that the World Council of Churches will make a mandatory law; and I have read enough history to tell you this, I will agree with anyone, that the Catholic Church has made a lot of things mandatory, some of which was good, but some of it was not good. Regardless of the fact that she made Sunday mandatory for worship, you have to keep in mind the fact that the Catholic Church did not come into existence to start its work, until about 500 A.D., and Christians were already worshiping on Sunday, the first day of the week when the apostle Paul wrote his Epistles. Well anyhow, after 500 A.D.,the Catholic Church did gradually make changes, all because the bishops that moved from time to time to take their place, began to lose sight of this and that, and they began to substitute this and that as occasions arose. Keep in mind though, the Roman world was filled with a society of nothing but pagan people. In America today one is a Hindu, one is a Buddha, another Moslem, and another something else. If it was like in the old world you would see how hard it would be to live a Christian life and let your Christian life affect the social realm, when everything about you is so opposite. Therefore when the Catholic Church took over, she did truly make Sunday, the first day of the week, the day to worship. She took it from what the early Christians had already been doing for five hundred years: She just did that to make it mandatory for everyone, just like she did baptism. The point is, the Catholic Church did not make Sunday a day of worship mandatory wise, just to get rid of the Jewish Law. If you want to go back to the squabble between the Orthodox church, which was the Greek Orthodox Church and the Roman Church, you will find that the Greeks held to the Jewish Passover season the same time the Jews did; but when the Roman Church came into power, they began to compete against the Orthodox Church of Greece, and there was a controversy between them about the time of the Passover. That is why the western world is usually from three to ten days out of season with the Jewish calendar, on the Passover season. I say that, not to cause you to go home and get a calendar and start counting days. It is a fact, the Roman world has affected the Gentile world to a great extent, but they are blamed for some things that they are not responsible for, and Christians worshiping on Sunday is one of them. I will remind you of this, The Jewish Law requiring Sabbath keeping, will have an end with all of its types, in the Millennium: That is why the first day of the week is the day that Jesus rose. The first day of the week is the day the Church was born on. When we come to that second part where it speaks of the eighth day in that seventh month, that is speaking of that eternal age just beyond the Millennium. It is going to be a wonderful time. It is a shame that we have people in America today, in a nation that has been looked upon as a Christian nation, and knowing what the Reformation has produced, that still hold on to just one day as if that is the all sufficient key to everything. I want to deal with this a little more here: Why did Paul have such a battle with the churches he established out in the Gentile world? What was going on? You and I know as we read the truth in the epistles that he wrote, Paul was the Jew that had the revelation from God, that it does not matter whether we are Jew or Gentile, we are all saved through the operation of faith, because of God’s grace and mercy. It means God somehow or other takes us Gentile sinners, though we have been looked upon in past times, by the Jews who had the Law, as filthy dogs, but now that God has shown grace to us Gentiles, He is willing to forgive us of all our evil ways and begin to make a complete new person out of us. How does He do that? Simply because once we repent and acknowledge our sin, He then gives us that Spirit which the Law could not give to anyone; and there is something about this Spirit, which is actually the seal of God, that once He is in you, you begin to see things in a different light. Having this Spirit dwelling in us, is actually what seals our faith and begins to build confidence in us. With this in mind, that is why I have to say, you are not stopping with baptism, you are not stopping with one little issue. Therefore we are going to touch on three different things. What were the issues Paul had to contend with the most? When you look in the Roman letter, there are two things. This church was not founded by Paul. This church was founded by Jews that came from Rome to Jerusalem for the feast of Pentecost; and they were there on that day when the Holy Spirit descended and filled the 120 disciples that were assembled in that upper room waiting for the promise of the Father. They saw what happened, how the Holy Ghost came and how those who received that Spirit reacted. They were some of those that were in the three thousand that were baptized by Peter and those other apostles that day. These that did come from Rome, went back to Rome, and because there were many Roman proselytes to the Jewish faith there, this presented them with a nucleus of people, so that over the period of months and a few short years following, there was a large gathering of both Jews and Gentiles that had been converted to the faith of Jesus Christ. They had not yet had a teacher such as Paul, to help them get established on a firm foundation; so they had been left to collect certain things that seemed right to them. Therefore in this Roman Church you had circumcision as one argument. Then you had another argument about eating meat. When you read it carefully you see how Paul rebuked both sides. He said, (Romans 2, starting in verse 25) “For circumcision verily profiteth, if thou keep the law: but if thou be a breaker of the law, thy circumcision is made uncircumcision. 26 Therefore if the uncircumcision keep the righteousness of the law, shall not his uncircumcision be counted for circumcision? 27 And shall not uncircumcision which is by nature, if it fulfil the law, judge thee, who by the letter and circumcision dost transgress the law? 28 For he is not a Jew, which is one outwardly; neither is that circumcision, which is outward in the flesh: 29 But he is a Jew, which is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit, and not in the letter; whose praise is not of men, but of God.” He plainly says circumcision alone is of no benefit unless it be circumcision of the heart, which is the beginning of a new man in the Lord Jesus Christ. Again he says, Let no man condemn you in meats nor drinks, nor in holy days. That is why he warned those people in the Roman letter, You that believe it is wrong to eat certain meats, if you want to hold to that, do it, but don’t condemn your brother that believes by faith, that he can eat all things, because God hath sanctified all things, because it is sanctified by prayer and thanksgiving. Imagine you and me living in that day, and here comes these preachers that want to get a gathering unto themselves, so they have a fiery message on circumcision, you have to be circumcised in order to be saved. Is that not what Paul ran into when he and Barnabas got back to Antioch? Circumcision was the topic, so that should tell people this, If circumcision back then could upset a church, how much more in this day and hour, when people want to teach others using just use one thing of the Law, the Sabbath? Is it not obvious, where such teaching leads to? The Law has no more control, no more hold over you, after you have accepted the Gospel of Jesus Christ. That is what all of the Law was pointing to throughout its duration. Since Calvary, salvation had absolutely got to be by your own personal faith in the finished work of the Lord Jesus Christ, when He took the sins, sickness and disease in His own body and laid down His Life as payment for all of them, to satisfy God’s demand that a perfect sacrifice be made for them. Therefore knowing the truth about all of these things, we know it does not give anyone the right to go out and say, Bless God, I will work all seven days: What difference does it make? If you take such an attitude as that, your spirit is not right, so if you do that, you are on your way to hell. I say it in that way because you are supposed to have received the Holy Spirit, and the Holy Spirit does not lead anyone to act like that. Believers today, are under the second covenant. That is what the second covenant meant. If the old covenant could not give you the Spirit of God, but the new covenant can, then this goes to show for sure, that now that we are living by faith, and because we love God. We want to do His will. That is why we are going to set aside just what the early Christians said, We choose the first day of the week to worship the Lord, because we do it out of a revelation, and not out of a mandatory law someone has made. We are worshiping the Lord on the first day of the week, because it is the day the scriptures say Jesus rose from the dead. He set a perfect type. He is the beginning of the new creation. The Law only pertains to the old creation, but He is the beginning of the new creation. We are the product that has been brought into God’s family through the process of His re-creating. We are begotten sons and daughters. Jesus was the only begotten Son of God from the standpoint of the person He was; but we are begotten sons and daughters because of a spiritual birth, through the avenue that was opened up to us by the Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore He has given us His Spirit, which is a Spirit that incorporates the attributes of both the Son and the Father, because they became one, there at the Jordan River when the Spirit, which is the Father, descended upon and indwelt His only begotten Son. That is how we become one with Him: by receiving His Spirit and Him dwelling in us. Let us back up a little, to the book of Ephesians, chapter 4. In this chapter, from the 17th verse on down, he is talking about how, if we are really purposing in our hearts to be a new creature in Christ, then we will cease to do the things pagan Gentiles keep doing. You read it. In the 29th verse, “Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers. And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto,” from one Sabbath to the next. No. That is not what it says at all. Grieve not the Holy Spirit whereby ye are sealed, How Long? from one meal to the next? No. “Grieve not the holy spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.” That means the day this vile body of ours has been changed into that immortal image just like the risen Christ, and we rise to meet Him in the air. A man came to look me up when we were in Bath, Canada, to the home where we were staying. That is when we had printed the article, “Why did the early Christians choose the first day of the week to worship?” In that area, there were strong followers of the Seventh Day Adventists. We heard a knock on the door downstairs, and the wife of the couple where we were staying went to the door. Do you have a man here by the name of Raymond Jackson? The man asked. She said, Yes we do. She then asked, Is it alright to send him up? I said, Yes, it is alright. When he came to the top of the stairs, he introduced himself. Then he got right to the point and said, I came here to curse you: You have written and published blasphemous things in your articles. I want you to know that God is going to do such and such. I thought, You are just another person on your little pony, and you have to ride. After he said that, I said, Look, I am more scared of a mouse running across my feet than I am of what you are saying right now. That was all I needed to hear from him. Saints, I am thankful for truth from the word of God. Let me say to all who will ever hear or read this, If you are going to keep the Law, any part of it, you cannot get by with keeping just the Jewish Sabbath day: You have to keep it all. If you just keep one thing and do not keep the rest, you are the same as having broken the whole Law. Furthermore, even if you could keep the whole Law, what good would it do? We are under a New Covenant now. Listen to me though, What I am saying, does not give Gentiles a license to go from here and work seven days a week. No. Common sense, and a clear understanding, lets us know Christ rose on the first day of the week, and that is exactly why Christians ought to worship on this day. It becomes a day of abstaining from our natural things of life and gathering together with other believers for worship and fellowship. It becomes a day when we set ourselves aside to worship Him, because we see the types and shadows set forth in the scriptures, that all point to exactly that.
EARLY CHRISTIANITY V/S CHRISTIANITY TODAY
Since the title of our subject is “The Eighth Day,” we are trying our best to make it as plain as possible, using scripture, as well as the writings of the Ante-Nicene fathers, but even after all of our efforts, a person who is too stubborn to open up for truth will still follow tradition. Any average church going person that has never looked beyond their traditions might say, What in this world are you talking about? The answer to that is this, Our reason for worshiping the Lord on the first day of the week, is because that is the day the Lord Jesus rose from the dead. A lot of the church world today is totally ignorant of why they do what they do, simply because they are just following traditions of old. Then you have the Advent people that write their various articles, based entirely upon the fact that the Catholic Church canonized the first day of the week and made it mandatory for the Roman Christians to worship on that day, but they are not the one’s that first started worshiping on the first day of the week. True Christians are not honoring the sun god by keeping Sunday as their day of worship: They are honoring THE SON OF GOD: There is an enormous difference. Furthermore, as you look at the Hebrew Calendar, you will not find days called by certain names like, Sunday, Monday and so on: They speak of the 15th day of this or that month, and that is sufficient, but the Jews did keep the Sabbath Day, because the Law of Moses required them to. Thank God! We are not living under that law of do’s and do not’s, but under the law of grace, and we have the privilege of worshiping God according to the revelation He gives us in our spirit: That is the only true worship there is. If you are just going through the motions of some traditional idea of worship, you are not really worshiping God at all. Did not Jesus say, God is a Spirit, and they that worship Him must worship Him in spirit and in truth? Did He just say that for the lack of something better to say? No. I assure you, Realizing that, is the first step toward spiritual maturity. If you do not know yet, that God is not a person, you are not yet in a place where you can gain spiritual stature. You can have respect for God, you can recognize the fact that all are sinners, and that it is only because of God’s grace that we have access to Him in Prayer, but having a true revelation of the Godhead, is what puts you in a place where you can worship God in Spirit and in truth. You might say, But I love Jesus and I know He loves me! If that is your confession, it is important that you also know that Jesus is the only PERSON in the Godhead, and that what He did at Calvary was not done to fulfill His own Plan; but to fulfill the Father’s predestined purpose. Did He not say, I do only that which the Father shows me? Did He not say also, (John 16) 23 “And in that day ye shall ask me nothing. Verily, verily, I say unto you, Whatsoever ye shall ask the Father in my name, He will give it you. 24 Hitherto have ye asked nothing in my name: ask, and ye shall receive, that your joy may be full?” Therefore saints, when you pray, pray to the Father, (in the name of Jesus) just like Jesus Himself instructed believers to do. Jesus took our sins and our sicknesses to the cross in His own body, and overcame death, hell and all the powers of the devil for us; but He did it because that was the plan His Father designed to set mankind free from the bondage of the devil. He is to be loved and adored because of who He is, and because of what He did for lost mankind, but we always must realize He was not fulfilling His own plan: He was obeying the will of His Father. The Holy Ghost which we receive, is given to us by the Father, the great Creator, in the name of His only begotten Son JESUS, just like Jesus said in John 14:26, so let us read that, and then we will go ahead dealing with the eighth day. 26 “But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, He shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.” What I am trying to get you to see, is that it takes a true revelation to worship God in Spirit and in truth. Christians trying to keep the Jewish Sabbath, is not worshiping God in Spirit and in truth. Keep in mind our calendar is divided up into weeks of seven days each, and each one of those days were named after some pagan god. We do not have to fight against the calendar: We just need to follow a true revelation instead of man’s traditions. Keep in mind, in the Hebrew calendar there was no such thing as a week. A week was seven days and you started all over again. Like I said already, The days did not carry names. We got that from the Greek’s. We are just beginning to find out some things that were written in the early writings of the Christian Era, before the writings of the Anti-Nicene Fathers, which naturally was before the Nicene Creed in 325 A. D. From the apostolic hour up to that hour, in the different generations of Christianity, many of those men wrote and expressed the joy of their salvation, and spoke of the gospel that they proclaimed and held to, and many of them were being thankful and expressing feelings of great joy because of their understanding of the eighth day. They knew the eighth day pointed to the first day of the following week as the Sabbath came to a close. We also realize this, This eighth day in its true observance, pointed to an era of time beyond the present era we are in. We are coming close to the close of six thousand years. I read the other night, that some of those Anti-Nicene Fathers believed that God would work six thousand years, meaning six dispensational days, in dealing with man on his need for salvation. That would be followed by what we call the Millennium, which would be the earth’s Sabbath, and it would also be a Sabbath to mankind. But all of that would absolutely be fulfilling the furtherance of the carrying out of God’s redemptive plan to the planet earth, getting it ready to be handed over into the eternal age. What you read in Revelation 21 and 22 is heaven and earth, as John was made to see it, as time will go into the eternal age and that becomes world without end. As we said earlier, That puts everything back in its original state. That is what the eighth day is. The eighth day is not a succession of days that continues on, changing from time to time. The eighth day is actually the first day again of the cycle of seven, but in that eighth day it remains forever to be the same. That is why it was all typed and foretold here in these scriptures. The leaders of your denominational church world today, will take something that John Wesley said, or in other words, take something that one of the Reformation founders has said, all of which could very well be true, but none of those Reformation leaders ever went back into that era of time to give you an insight of what any of those men, like Polycarp, Barnabas, Ignatius, or Justin the Martyr and men like that ever said, and all those men wrote about the eighth day. From the computer, there are three hundred and some odd readings out of those volumes of books where those men, before the Nicene Creed time, spoke many times, different things concerning the eighth day, what it meant to them. If that had been carried on down into the era when Roman Catholicism did spring up, I have my doubts you would have had any Seventh Day Adventists today. That is not said just for the purpose of casting any reflections, but because it is a fact people have a right to know. It is a shame that we have Christendom today, with just one or two pet scriptures which they build their articles of faith around: Then they build their whole life around that. They are ready to cut everything else off unless you join that same camp. That is not what we have portrayed in the Bible, of early Christianity. We do know this for sure, also. The early Church did not worship on the Jewish Sabbath. I read from Barnabas the other night, and Irenaeus wrote the same thing: That all of those early men that followed the footsteps of the apostles, plainly tell how that on the first day of the week, those that lived in the countryside would gather together in one place for worship on the first day of the week. They gathered to celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ; and to give thanks to God for His mercy and grace. Why did they choose to do this? Because they knew from the scriptures that Jesus Christ is the beginning of a new creation that is not established on the merits of fleshly human beings. It is the beginning of God’s new plan of redemption, whereby He is not dealing with the flesh, except to get it crucified, and to renew the spirit of the human being that lives inside of it. That is why it says in 2nd Corinthians, 5:17 “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.” How are you in Christ? We are in Christ through the baptism of the Holy Spirit; and because of that, we are a new creature. Things will never be the same again. You are not just a person that has changed your ideas about life: you are actually made new within. You are definitely a new creature, old things have passed away, and all things have become new. The Law could not do that for anyone. There are things in the Law that people can copy, they can apply it to their life style, but somewhere along the line they lose heart, just lose interest. That is why the apostle Paul talked about the Law the way he did. Many of the Jews condemned him, and said he was a heretic; but he was the man who taught the Gentiles, who were heathen, pagans, what faith was all about and how it works in one’s life.
LETTING THE SCRIPTURES SPEAK
Open your Bible’s to Romans 10, and let us read a few verses there. As we said this morning, in seeking to give people a concrete point to anchor their faith in, we are seeking to establish the fact that the ten commandments and all the statutes and oracles that went with all of that, still was not sufficient to give anyone eternal life. If you study the Bible carefully, Paul plainly shows you that it took that Law to actually let lost mankind really see where sin lay. The Law said, Thou shall do thus and so, or thou shall not, but beyond that, it had statutes and other things that went along with it. Therefore with this in mind, when we come to the end of the Law age, that is exactly why it plainly states that Christ is the end of the Law for righteousness to those who believe. Let us see how Paul brought this out as he wrote to the brethren at Rome. Verse 1,”Brethren, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for Israel is, that they might be saved. For I bear them record that they have a zeal of God, but not according to knowledge. For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God. (Listen carefully to what Paul says in the 4th verse.) For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth. For Moses describeth the righteousness which is of the law, That the man which doeth those things shall live by them. But the righteousness which is of faith speaketh on this wise, Say not in thine heart, Who shall ascend into heaven? (that is, to bring Christ down from above:) Or, Who shall descend into the deep? (that is, to bring up Christ again from the dead.) But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach.” It all sums up to this, you are saved by faith, through the grace of God. Your believing that Jesus Christ took your sins and reproaches in His own physical person and bore them to Calvary’s tree, is what brings salvation to you. There was not a thing in the Law of Moses that anyone could possibly observe, that could make a new creation out of them. Let us not forget what the Law consisted of. It consisted of the Sabbath keeping. That is the fourth commandment. The point is, for those who insist on Sabbath keeping, There are many other things in the Law, things that the Jews held to; and none of them were able to do for lost mankind what Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ can do. Circumcision was another. Certain eating of meats is another. Therefore Sabbath keeping does not stand alone. Holy festivity periods were also part of keeping the Law, like the Passover, in the fall of the year the feast of trumpets, all of these were celebrated by the Jews in fulfilling everything to the letter. The point is, Within those observances there were certain types and shadows that they did not see. That is exactly why, if you read the scriptures correctly, concerning the Passover, it tells you when Jesus would rise from the dead. He did not rise on the Jewish Sabbath: He rose on the first day of the week. In these scriptures right here, it states this, before the Passover season was to be observed, the farmer that had grain in the field ready to be harvested in a few days, was to go into the field and thrust in his cycle and gather a sheaf. He was to bring that to the priest at the temple and leave it in his care. He did that before the Passover season was to start. But notice, on the next day after the Sabbath that fell in the Passover season, this spoke of the fact that Christ would rise from the dead, not on the Sabbath, but on the first day of the week. We find in that Jewish, Levitical Law, that on the morrow after the Sabbath, that closed out in the Passover season, the high priest was to take that bundle and was to wave it before the Lord. That is the type it portrayed. The Jews have already eaten the Passover lamb, and they have already been eating unleavened bread, but this tomorrow after the Sabbath, is that which speaks of the resurrection of their Messiah. For hundreds of years they had been doing that and not even realizing what it pointed to. That is why, in the four gospels it all bears out that Jesus rose sometime in the early hours of the first day of the week, somewhere between twelve o’clock and just before the sun came up. Imagine trying to teach that Jesus rose from the dead on the closing of the Jewish Sabbath, and here are the priests out there the next day, waving the wave offering. The type has got to correspond with the object itself. How many can understand that the wave offering had to have some significance in portraying a type? That is also why, when they were to count fifty days after the sheaf offering, the wave offering, that would be the feast of Pentecost. They were to bring two leavened loaves of bread of the same product that the sheaf offering came out of. Then there was a burnt offering to be brought with that. That was to be done fifty days after the resurrection of Christ, or the wave offering. That is why the church was born on the first day of the week, and not on the Jewish Sabbath. It all goes to prove, that in Jesus Christ is the beginning of a new creation. It is how God is seeking to redeem His creation of human beings back to Himself. It is just that simple. When you go to the next two Levitical settings, seven months later brings you to the fall of the year. That speaks of the re-gathering of Israel. The eighth day is spoken of very plain there. When you get into the 43rd chapter of Ezekiel’s writings, it speaks of the Millennium altar, when the new temple is rebuilt and the Millennium is set in motion, for seven days they will dedicate that altar by the various sacrifices. You can read it. It will take seven days to dedicate that altar. That speaks of the week, that in this natural process mankind has been journeying through. For a thousand years, which is the seventh day in a dispensational setting, God will not accept that altar offering until beginning on the eighth day. That should tell you seven does not close out God’s plan. It has got to unfold and go into the eighth day. When it goes into the eighth, that is pointing to that era, that is eternity, world without end. Now we all realize, every time we read an epistle of Paul, that he was continually harassed by the Jewish proselytes. Some of them had been converted to Christianity. Then, here they come, dragging this and that from the Law, some meat eating, some observance of days, some circumcision, just anything to harass Paul’s gospel of faith.
PAUL’S RESPONSE TO FALSE TEACHING
We are going to look at some of these things Paul was faced with, and see how he sums it all up. Let us go to Galatians 5:1. Think of this church that had been established by Paul in earlier days, how they were so soon turned again to former practices. Paul had taught them the truth, what faith is, how it reaches out to lay hold on the unmerited work of God on our behalf. These people started out believing that, but here comes one of those proselyte preachers dragging that old thing of circumcision around with him. Then when Paul does hear about it, he is compelled to write this letter. He begs these people, Stand fast, in the truth you were established on. (chapter 5 verse 1) “Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage. Behold, I Paul say unto you, that if ye be circumcised, Christ shall profit you nothing.” If that was good then, it is still good today. I will not only say that, but this also, Circumcision came out of the Law, but we need to keep in mind, that as an ordinance it appeared before the Law, because God gave it to Abraham before there ever was a nation of people for God to give the Law to. Read about it in the Roman letter, read about it in Genesis. It too set a beautiful type. “Behold, I Paul say unto you, that if ye be circumcised, Christ shall profit you nothing. (The point is, You cannot mix Law and Grace together.) For I testify again to every man that is circumcised, that he is a debtor to do the whole law.” Let us look at it this way, If you are going to preach circumcision the way it was back then, be sure you keep the Sabbath, and keep your mouth away from certain meats the Law forbade, and be sure you observe every other day just exactly the way the Law says to, burn incense when it is supposed to be burned, sacrifice your gifts exactly when the Law says they are supposed to be sacrificed. Yet when you have done all of that, do not forget, God’s word says that in burnt offerings and sacrifices He was not well pleased. People get caught up in an idea and fulfill this certain idea because they somehow feel like, If I do this to the best of my ability, that is all I am required to do. They are wrong. The Holy Ghost was not given to the Jews on the day of Pentecost because they had kept the Law. The blood of bulls and goats did not take away sin. What did it do? It atoned temporarily. The apostle Paul said the Law was a school master, because it revealed sin. It is just like going to a bank to borrow a thousand dollars. As long as you keep the interest paid, they will let the principal carry on over, they will renew the note. That is exactly how the observance of the Law was: It worked exactly the same way. The sin debt that the keepers of the Law had hanging over them still remained, but observing the animal sacrifice, and keeping the rest of the Law, temporarily pushed their guilt on out ahead, to be paid in full at a later time (at Calvary). That is all it did. It did not take away the guilt of sin: it only atoned temporarily. “For I testify again to every man that is circumcised, that he is a debtor to do the whole law. Christ is become of no effect unto you, whosoever of you are justified by the law; ye are fallen from grace.” Who said that? I did not, but I could, because it is the truth. Paul said it to those Galatians that had been deceived by some slick talking preacher that claimed to have authority. You cannot take a little Law and mix it with a lot of Grace and make a balanced message out of it. There was a time, when the Law was mandatory. That is why, if we get the Bible balanced just right, Jeremiah’s prophecy, in the 31st chapter, 31-33, reveals God’s plan for the house of Israel, to become effective at a later time. 31 “Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel, and with the house of Judah: 32 Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt; which my covenant they brake, although I was an husband unto them, saith the LORD: 33 But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the LORD, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be my people.” A new covenant will He make with the house of Israel after those days. Meaning after the old Law has run its course. This is why, in the Galatian letter Paul wrote, In the fulness of time Christ was born of woman under the Law, that He might be the perfect atonement for them that were under the Law, and bring them out from under the Law, and establish them under Grace. That is how it all sums up. “For we through the Spirit wait for the hope of righteousness by faith. For in Jesus Christ neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision; but faith which worketh by love. (He says to the church in that day,) Ye did run well; who did hinder you that ye should not obey the truth?” Some people may not think that we are really living in a serious day. I assure you, We are! We are living in a serious day, but we are living in a day God is giving an element of people an opportunity to see, to understand, and to come back to the original gospel truth that the apostles taught in the first Age of Christianity. It is a shame that many of our organized systems have taken certain things that their reformer preached, thinking it is no longer necessary to pay any attention to anything else. We must always keep in mind, that the reformers were men that God used in their period of time, to restore accessibility to the various things of truth that had been lost through time, so that in the end time the true Church might have accessibility to the knowledge of all the truth of the gospel of Jesus Christ. After five hundred years, we might say this, As the Reformation began, about 1520 A.D., look what we had in the Gentile world, every kind of dogma, every kind of doctrine man could concoct. We have millions of people in the world today, that actually act like they can only absorb one particular truth. They cannot carry a knowledge of a balanced picture that the Bible brings out, so they just latch on to one thing and that is all they want. Let us go on over to Galatians 6, and see what Paul is saying as he closes out this epistle. In closing his testimony to them, he wants this Galatian church to know that regardless of whether you believe me or you do not believe me, I am not going to glory in your circumcision message that this man brought to you. I have only one thing to glory in, and that is the cross the Lord Jesus Christ went to, to pay our sin debt. Let us see exactly what he said to them, starting in the 11th verse. “Ye see how large a letter I have written unto you with mine own hand. As many as desire to make a fair show in the flesh, they constrain you to be circumcised; only lest they should suffer persecution for the cross of Christ.” Now imagine, there were people back then, if they knew they were going to be exposed to a lot of public persecution, it did not seem wrong then, to go out and follow the Jewish ritual of circumcision; but to say, I believe in the atonement work that was accomplished for me on the cross of Calvary along with that, was going too far: The whole pagan world was in an uproar, and the Jewish world was too. That was in an hour when you got persecuted, if you believed in that man that died on that cruel cross. Let us see how Paul brings this out. “For neither they themselves who are circumcised keep the law; but desire to have you circumcised, that they may glory in your flesh.” I have to say this to the many friends of Adventism, You are really not glorifying God at all, when you hold on to Sabbath keeping: you are trying to glorify a day that two thousand years ago had a meaning to the Jewish people, but you have missed the fact that this day had a dispensation allotted to it, and there was something contained in it that pointed to another day: That is what you missed. You did not move on, as God moved on. We do not find that there were men coming down through the process of time into the second century, into the third century, that preached Adventism. That also is a teaching that has come up here in these last generations of time. Like I said before, You have one group that holds to Sabbath keeping: You have the Jehovah Witness group that have a Millennium teaching; and the Pentecostal realm has Jesus only. Somewhere, these groups have one particular thing they want to play with. Paul goes on and says this, “But God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ.” Paul says in another epistle, concerning himself, I am a Hebrew of the Hebrews, of the tribe of Benjamin, circumcised the eighth day, and as touching the law I am blameless, but as touching the church, I persecuted it for a while. That is why he said, Those things that I counted gain at one time, I now count as loss, that I might serve Jesus Christ with my whole heart. (That is not his exact words.) Nevertheless he now knows that is a walk of faith. “But God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world is crucified unto me, (You could imagine him saying, “I care not, what you Jews may think or say, or even if you go on and kill me, I know what God has given me and I have to declare it: He gave me a revelation to preach to these Gentiles, people that you Jews think are nothing but dirty dogs, and He showed me, He is going to save these Gentiles that believe, because it is written in Isaiah, By a certain people I will provoke Israel to jealousy.” He did a good job of it. That is why the Jewish nation are like they are today, and I am not pointing the finger, but they cannot understand why we accepted this man they crucified two thousand years ago, nor why we believe He was their Messiah.) and I unto the world. For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision, but a new creature.” With a new revelation and a new beginning, Paul preached the gospel of Jesus Christ. God gave him the revelation that Jesus is the firstborn among many brethren. Again He is the firstborn from among the dead. He is the first begotten of the new family of God, and we are begotten sons and daughters, through Him, unto the Lord. We make up the process of a new creation. Now listen to Paul’s admonition to those people. You that have the faith, and the understanding, listen to this. “And as many as walk according to this rule, peace be on them, and mercy, and upon the Israel of God. From henceforth (He is speaking of himself.) let no man trouble me: for I bear in my body the marks of the Lord Jesus.” How many times he was stoned and beaten, we do not know for sure. Those Jews, when he went back to Jerusalem, pointed their finger, There, is the man that caused all this furor. Kill him, such a man ought not be allowed to live. (But Paul said), “From henceforth let no man trouble me: for I bear in my body the marks of the Lord Jesus. Brethren, the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit. Amen.” We can go to Acts 15, where Paul and Barnabas have just returned from Asia, establishing Gentile churches, and they come back to Antioch. Verse 1, “And certain men which came down from Judaea taught the brethren, (Where? At Antioch.) and said, Except ye be circumcised after the manner of Moses, ye cannot be saved.” Now saints, I am not preaching circumcision: I am just using the old Judaistic issue to show you something. If they would use one lone item back then to harass the body of Christendom anywhere it went, then we have that same kind of spirit in our day that will go into this Bible, pull out certain passages of scripture, completely out of context of the original setting, they get a revelation of some kind, and here they go, on fire. I just have to say, If one day is all you have to play with, you are just as bad as those fellows were, preaching on circumcision. If one day is all you have to play with, you are just as bad as those in the Roman letter, where Paul said, Let no man henceforth judge you in meat or drink, nor in a holy day, for such were types, pointing ahead to a greater thing. The point is this, he who seeks to live by the Law, he is a debtor to keep the whole thing. Take one thing out of context and try to establish your righteousness on that, and that Sabbath will not mean one thing. That is why, back in the era when these scriptures were all written, or in the era of the Law, God plainly put the types and shadows in those passages of scripture so that people could have the opportunity to see them. The truth is, they did not see them. A lot in the church world today, still do not see them. They will just accept certain things that have been handed down, regardless whether there is any validity to them or not. So and So said so, and I believe he was right. We know from this setting here at Antioch, that this is when Paul and Barnabas went to Jerusalem. You can read the rest of the chapter. You will see what the disciples, the apostles at Jerusalem said. Now I am going to use one other thing here to show you where we live today. In this twentieth century, since the era of the Pentecostal revival that broke out at the beginning of the century at Azuza Street, there has become a movement called the Yahweh people. I have nothing bad to say toward the Yahweh people, they have been good to me. No sooner did we begin to publish the Contender, it got into their hands. I would get a letter from one, once in awhile. They sent me a Hebrew Bible. It is the English, but where the English word Lord appears, it is Yahweh. They approach this as that being the name of God. They leave it that if we use the English word Lord, we are referring to God or the Lord in a pagan language. That is as bad as what the Catholic Church does, or as the Adventists say, If we worship on the first day of the week, we are worshiping on a pagan holy day, because of the sun god. Brothers and sisters, I have to say, I do not care what people think of me, I know where I stand on the issues we are covering, because I have scripture to vindicate my stand. Yet there are people in this modern world today, that can be beguiled with almost anything. I have had Yahweh people out of sincerity, try to tell me, Bro. Jackson, Yahweh is the name of God: it is the right word: it is the Hebrew word. I find that most of them are Gentiles. I have read the writings of the Messianic Jews, and there are hundreds and hundreds of them throughout the United States and Canada , and Israel. Those same Messianic Jews that are beginning to open their eyes to the fact that we Gentiles did accept Jesus the Christ as our real Savior, when they put these things in their writings, coming from Hebrew to English, very few of them refer to the Lord as Yahweh. They use the English word Lord. If they are referring to Jesus, instead of the Hebrew word Yashua, they will say Jesus the Christ. A certain brother wrote me a nice letter, but he was showing how God had dealt with him. When I got the letter I thought to myself, Here is a man that has an understanding of what the Hebrew name for God means, in the literal Hebrew word. But let me say this, if you can follow my illustration, When the apostles came from Israel in the first century of Christendom, they were all Jewish men. I am convinced that when they spoke in the Greek tongue, to the Greek people in those churches, they spoke in the language most commonly understood by those people. We must keep in mind that some of those churches were first started by converted Jews. That is why Paul said the gospel is to the Jew first, then to the Gentile. He starts with a nucleus of Jews; so what terminology and language do you think Paul is going to use? He is going to use Hebrew. Then if he begins to speak fluently to the whole body of people, he will be speaking in Greek. In all probability he will still keep the name of God as, maybe Yahweh, because the mixed congregation necessitated that he do that. With Jews and Gentiles sitting there, the Gentiles had nothing to argue about. The Jews that had been converted to this same Christ, had nothing to argue about; so no one was arguing over the fact that Paul, or Peter, or any of those that spoke to them were using the Hebrew name Yahweh, instead of Lord. They are trying to say, that somewhere in the centuries since then, the Church just dropped Yahweh and accepted a pagan name. I have to say, I was born to speak English. I do not know that I use it very well, but I try to use it the best I know how. Our Bible, in English, speaks of the Lord, referring to Him as Jehovah, or the Lord Jehovah. I wrote back to one fellow and said, If I was going to be led to speak to a congregation of Jewish people, I would absolutely, for their sake and honor, where it is written Lord Jehovah, I would speak Yahweh, because I have sense enough to know, that is the Hebrew word for the Lord. I would honor them because it is their language. The Bible came from that language. I would do it out of respect. But when a Gentile forsakes all other things and it is just Yahweh, Yahweh, a one theme song to sing, then he is just like the Adventist are with the Sabbath. Like somebody else with circumcision, all they can think of is circumcision, circumcision. All of this somewhere, someday, must be coupled together and make up a full gospel that deals with the whole story from beginning to end. That is what we have. Preachers are running the world over, seeking to get converts, seeking to be influential. It is bad enough as we look at Christendom in America: Here are the Catholics, the Presbyterians, the Methodists, the Baptists, and come on down the line to Church of God, First Church of God, on to the Nazarene, and when you look at each one of these systems, they have one particular line of thought, and that is what they specialize in. That is not unity. Unity, is when there is a people that begin to get their eyes open and say, I want to know what this means. This is what the early church did. That is why we are living in a day just before the second coming of Jesus Christ; and the Spirit of God is dealing with a certain element of people, not only here in America but all over this world, to lead them to an understanding of the scriptures. That few people, whoever they are, they are going to get their minds cleaned out and be rid of all tradition. They are going to get rid of all these crooked, twisted ideas that separate people into divisions. Naturally I am talking about the true children of God: Not everyone going to church every week can be counted among the truly redeemed children of God. We are not going to be like these that play one record, the same old song over and over. We are going to put in the gospel record and it is going to be the true revelation that the Bible is talking about. I am saying this for the sake of this message, the eighth day, that is why we worship on the first day of the week. Because it is the eighth day. It is the day our Lord rose from the dead. He was the wave offering. He is the beginning. He is the firstborn from among the dead. He is the beginning of the creation of God. It plainly tells you in Revelation 3. He is the faithful witness. After two thousand years of this glorious gospel, His church is the mystical body that is supposed to be the representation of the incorporation of the person, the character, the spirituality of the Lord Jesus Christ Himself, because that is invested in a body of people that have been truly redeemed, all through the atoning work of Christ Jesus at Calvary. The Church is to bear His very image in the earth. The word image there, has nothing to do with the shape of His nose, where He parted His hair, or anything like that. It is speaking of that character, that display of spiritual manhood and obedience to the Father’s will. That is why Jesus is our pattern. He is the example set before us. He did not come down the road playing a one day tune. He preached one sermon one day, in one place, and turned the neighborhood upside down. Then He would go somewhere else and preach something else, and turn that place upside down. It was just like setting the chicken house on fire. You know what I mean by chicken house. All those doctors of divinity, by the time they heard what He said, was saying, He is a devil! Get Him out of here!
I hope that what we have said in this message might give you a little understanding of the importance of getting the picture right. We are not gathering here three times a week just to sing one song. We are here to allow the Spirit of God to take our lives, and our spiritual minds, and the true revelation of His word, and implant in us the same revelation the apostles of Jesus Christ had. I want to say this before we close this message, I do not want anyone writing me, when they see this in print, and saying that we are taking advantage of the Law by saying we will not observe any day. We are not that ignorant. We know this, The eighth day pointed to a day that we all must recognize, and that is the first day. That is why true Christians have held it for two thousand years. You can condemn it, and do all you want to, but we not only have an eighth day, we also have other things that builds a beautiful picture. When the computer gets through printing all those statements the early men of the faith wrote, we want to show you that they said more in those first three centuries, of what they believed, and what the eighth day pointed to. It is referred to three hundred and some times. They had a revelation. They knew what the eighth day pointed to. I pray we can look at this and try to understand it in its true meaning. May God bless you. Amen