“AND HE (JESUS) SAID UNTO THEM, THAT THE SON OF MAN IS LORD ALSO OF THE SABBATH.” Luke 6:5.
We find in the Four Gospels that Jesus Christ calls Himself “the Son of man” about eighty times.
Very solemn words were spoken by the Lord, in John 5:25 to 27—“Verily, verily, I say unto you, The hour is coming, and now is, when the dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God: and they that hear shall live. For as the Father hath life in Himself; so hath He given to the Son to have life in Himself; And hath given Him authority to execute judgment also, because He is the Son of man.”
Note also His statement, in Luke 5:24 “But that ye may know that the Son of man hath power upon earth to forgive sins (he said unto the sick of the palsy), I say unto thee, Arise, and take up thy couch, and go into thine house.”
Again, note John 1:51, Luke 22:69 and Matthew 25:31. “And He saith unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Hereafter ye shall see heaven open, and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of man. “
“Hereafter shall the Son of man sit on the right hand, of the power of God.”
“When shall come in His glory, and all the holy angels with Him, then shall He sit upon the throne of His glory”
Here we learn something of the power, authority and Divine glory of the Son of man.
Note this strange question of the Lord Jesus—“What and if ye shall see the Son of man ascend up where He was before?”
Then in John 8:58, Christ said, “Before Abraham was I AM.” Where was the Son of man before? Before what and when? Not only before His incarnation but before Adam was created. Hear His own words: “And now, O Father, glorify Thou Me with Thine own self with the glory which I had with Thee before the word was.” John 17:5.
Yes, the Lord Jesus had glory with the Father before the world was. If Jesus Christ was the Jehovah of Israel, He Himself wrote the ten commandments on the two tables of stone. One of those commandments was, remember the sabbath day.
In God’s message of grace we read: “For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth.” Romans 10:4.
In writing concerning Old Testament Israel, the Holy Spirit said:—“But their minds were blinded: for until this day remaineth the same vail untaken away in the reading of the Old Testament; which is done away in Christ.” II Corinthians 3:14.
“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.”
“LET NO MAN THEREFORE JUDGE YOU IN MEAT, OR IN DRINK, OR IN RESPECT OF AN HOLYDAY, OR OF THE NEW MOON, OR OF THE SABBATH DAYS.” Colossians 2:14 and 16.
Christ is the end of the law. Christ abolished the law. Christians are not under the law. “For sin shall not have dominion over you; for ye are not under the law, but under grace.” Romans 6:14.
THE LAW A YOKE
“Now therefore why tempt ye God, to put a yoke upon the neck of the disciples, which neither our fathers nor we: were able to bear?” Acts 15:10.
Concerning the law given at Sinai, note:
“For they could not endure that which was commanded, And if so much as a beast touch the mountain, it shall be stoned, or thrust through with a dart.” Hebrews 12:20.
“For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all.” James 2:10.
By carefully studying the history of Israel under the law we learn that they had a sabbath but no rest; but the spirit of bondage unto fear. Romans 8:15. They were all their lifetime subject to bondage. Hebrews 2:15. They could not endure that which was written on those two stones. The Psalmist cried out, “it is time for Thee, Lord, to work; for they have made void Thy law.” Psalms 119:126. “They have broken thy law.” Since the law was given no man, saint or sinner, with the single exception of Jesus Christ, the Righteous, has ever perfectly kept God’s perfect law. “Therefore the law made nothing perfect.” Hebrews 7:19. Note condemned Israel under the law.
“But before faith came, we were kept under the law, shut up unto the faith which should afterwards be revealed.” Galatians 3:23.
Note carefully these words, “under the law the people of God were shut up.” Then note Galatians 3:24 and 25: “Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith. But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster.”
The law was Israel’s schoolmaster. Justified Israelites were not under the schoolmaster after they believed Paul’s gospel of grace.
Why did God give the law? “That sin might abound.” Romans 5:20. The law was added because of transgressions till Christ should come. Galatians 3:19. The law was given that every mouth might be stopped and all the world become guilty before God. Romans 3:19. The law worketh wrath. Romans 4:15.
Jesus Christ made peace by the blood of His cross. Colossians 1:20.
“I do not frustrate the grace of God for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain.” Galatians 2:21.
It is a spiritual crime to preach grace and law mixed for salvation.
“Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the law.” Romans 3:28.
When the zealous religious legalists insisted on giving Israel’s law to the Gentile Christians, an important conference was called. Read about it in Acts 15:1 to 23. Note the results: “Now therefore why tempt ye God, to put a yoke upon the neck of the disciples, which neither our, fathers nor we were able to bear?” Acts 15:10.
THE DECISION AT JERUSALEM
“FORASMUCH AS WE HAVE HEARD, THAT CERTAIN WHICH WENT OUT FROM US HAVE TROUBLED YOU WITH WORDS, SUBVERTING YOUR SOULS, SAYING, YE MUST BE CIRCUMCISED, AND KEEP THE LAW; TO WHOM WE GAVE NO SUCH COMMANDMENT.” Acts 15:24.
It was not the ceremonial law that Israel could not endure. What were the commandments against us and contrary to us that God blotted out on the cross? Colossians 2:14. The ceremonial law was taken away, but the commandments that were against Israel were “thou shalt” and “thou shalt not”. Note Galatians 4:7—“Wherefore thou art no more a servant, but a son, and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ.”
Under the law the Jews were servants.
They received the spirit of bondage unto fear. Christians are in the Household of the Father. We are a race of sons.
Under grace the sinners have a new law that just fits the sinner’s needs; namely, “the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus.” Romans 8:2. This law does for the believer what the ten commandments could never do. Romans 8:3. Why? Because of the sinner’s weakness, his inability to perfectly keep God’s perfect law. That same Divine law enables the justified believer to fulfill the righteousness of the law by walking- in the Spirit. Romans 8:4.
THE LAW WAS ADDED
Note Galatians 3:19. “The law was added.” “The Old Covenant was added.” “Then the Old Covenant was done away.” II Corinthians 3:14. To what was the law added? When the law was added, Israel’s sabbath was added. When the promised Seed came, the law was taken out of the way. So also was Israel’s sabbath. The law was added that sin might abound. Romans 5:20. The law was added to the gospel which God preached to uncircumcised Abram. Galatians 3:8 and Romans 4:7 to 11. The law was added to the promise which God made to Abraham more than 400 years before the law and the sabbath were added. Galatians 3:16 and 17.
“Now to Abraham and his seed were the promises made. He saith not, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to thy seed, which is Christ. And this I say, that the covenant, that was confirmed before of God in Christ, the law, which was four hundred and thirty years after, cannot disannul, that it should make the promise of none effect.”
The law economy was a parenthetical and temporary economy.
Abram believed God and it was counted unto him for righteousness. Genesis 15:6, Romans 4:1 to 6, Galatians 3:6 to 8. Abraham was not an Old Testament character. The old Testament was added when Moses was 80 years old. That was several centuries after Abraham had died. Abram was not under the law. Abram was not given a sabbath or any holy days to keep. Those holy days belonged to Israel, and “were imposed on them until the time of reformation.” Hebrews 9:10. Members of Christ’s Body are not under the law. They are not to be judged by sabbaths.
“Sabbath” is “cessation or rest.” God rested on the seventh day. Genesis 2:2. Gad had accomplished a perfect work of creation; and “sabbathed.” Now note Hebrews 10:12
“But this man (Christ), after He had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the right hand of God.”
Christ sat down. He rested in a perfect work of redemption. Christ “sabbathed”. God, at Sinai, gave Israel a perfect work to do, and with that perfect work a sabbath to keep. What did they do? Note Christ’s words, in John 7:19—“Did. not Moses give you the law, and yet none of you keepeth the law? Why go ye about to kill Me?”
The religious sabbath-keepers had their own King, Messiah and Lord nailed to the cross. They were sabbath-keeping murderers. Sabbath-keepers are always religious, but never spiritual.
Note the words of the Saviour: “Come unto Me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” Matthew 11:28. Those who accepted Christ found rest. Note “He that hath entered into his rest hath ceased from his own works as God did from His.” Read Hebrews 4.
Christ is the believer’s peace, hope and life. Ephesians 2:16 to 18. I Timothy 1:1, Colossians 3:4.
The believer is seated with Christ far above in the heavenlies, and is blessed with all spiritual blessings in the heavenlies: Ephesians 2:6, Ephesians 1:19 to 23, Ephesians 1:3.
Note again Colossians 2:16 and Galatians 5:1. These are plain instructions. God intends that members of the Body of Christ should obey them. Stand fast in the liberty wherewith Christ hath set you free.
NO UNIVERSAL SABBATH
Note God’s Word to Israel. “Wherefore the children of Israel shall keep the Sabbath, to observe the sabbath throughout their generations, for a perpetual covenant. IT IS A SIGN BETWEEN ME AND THE CHILDREN OF ISRAEL for ever; for in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, and on the seventh day He rested, and was refreshed.”
Exodus 31:16 and 17.
Members of the Body of Christ are seated in the heavenlies in Christ Jesus and are not living in Canaan. The Sabbath was a sign between Jehovah and Israel. It was kept from what we now call, Friday sun-down until Saturday sun-down. At this present time when it is night here it is day in the orient. Therefore we cannot have a universal sabbath. None but an ignorant Christian would confuse Israel’s religious program with the God-given spiritual program for the Body of Christ. In the dispensation of the grace of God there is no religion.
Note what God says in Galatians 4:10 and 11 and Galatians 5:3 and 4: “Ye observe days, and months, and times, and years. I am afraid of you, lest I have bestowed upon you labour in vain.” “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.”
God warns His children against religious days under His reign of grace. Every man who makes the Sabbath binding makes himself debtor to the whole law. No sinner or saint perfectly keeps the whole law without offending in one point; for no man ever lived on this earth, except Jesus Christ, who could honestly say, “I do always the things that please My Father,” “I love God with all my heart, soul, mind, and strength, and my neighbor as myself.”
There is no Christian sabbath. Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth. He is the believer’s Sabbath.
Note the following verses in which we read of the first day of the week. Luke 24:1, John 20:1, John 20:19, Acts 20:17, I Corinthians 16:2.
There was nothing legalistic or obligatory about the gathering of saints on the first day of the week. It was a day of privilege for the saints who gathered in the name of the Lord. It was neither the Christian sabbath nor the Lord’s day of Revelation 1:10. It is a great blunder to call Sunday “the Lord’s day.”
We leave with you Romans 14:5 and half of verse 6 and I Corinthians 8:13. “One man esteemeth one day above another: another esteemeth every day alike. Let every man be fully persuaded in his own mind. He that regardeth the day, regardeth it unto the Lord; and he that regardeth not the day, to the Lord he doth not regard it.”
THE SIN OF OFFENSE
“Wherefore, if meat make my brother to offend, I will eat no flesh while the world standeth, lest I make my brother to offend.”
So many religious members of the Body of Christ know very little about the Divine program of grace, and toward them others who have knowledge have to obey Romans 14 and I Corinthians 8, and be careful because of the ignorance and weaknesses of other members of the Body of Christ. In closing we quote, “What then? shall we sin, because we are not under the law, but under grace? God forbid.” Romans 6:15.
“Wherefore, my brethren, ye also are become dead to the law by the body of Christ; that ye should be married to another, even to Him Who is raised from the dead, that we should bring forth fruit unto God.” Romans 7:4.
“But now we are delivered from the law, that being dead wherein we were held; that we should serve in newness of spirit, and not in the oldness of the letter.” Romans 7:6.
“That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us who walk not after the flesh but after the Spirit.” Romans 8:4.
Love is the fulfilling of the law.
Romans 13:8 to 11. Love is the fruit of the Spirit. “Against such there is no law.” Galatians 5:21 to 26.
Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth. Christ is the believers’ righteousness. Romans 10:4, I Corinthians 1:30.
For more articles by Pastor J. C. O'Hair, visit the J. C. O'Hair Online Library.