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The witness of
regarding the Sabbath of the Lord.
This is NOT part of the Chart by J. F. Coltheart.
Here God sets out what He expects of us in this century.
In these last days He calls for a special attitude on the part of His followers. The Day of Atonement was held on one day of the year in the Jewish dispensation to picture the events of the last days just before the second coming. One prominent part of that "day" will be the response of His people to His Sabbath, His "day" of resting in Him.
And the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, Also on the tenth day of this seventh month there shall be a day of atonement: it shall be an holy convocation to you; and you shall afflict your souls, and offer an offering made by fire to the LORD. And you shall do no work in that same day: for it is a day of atonement, to make an atonement for you before the LORD your God.
[He requires that we concentrate on His works, not our own; His righteousness, not one of our own making.].
For whatsoever soul it be that shall not be afflicted in that same day, he shall be cut off from among his people. And whatever soul it be that does any work in that same day, the same soul will I destroy from among his people.
[This does not mean that we cannot have a secular occupation today, but that it must not take precedence over our Christian calling. In this, as in all other aspects of our religion, He must have the say if we are to be fully protected through the perils of the "last days".]
You shall do no manner of work: it shall be a statute for ever throughout your generations in all your dwellings. It shall be to you a sabbath of rest, and you shall afflict your souls: in the ninth day of the month at even, from even to even, shall you celebrate your sabbath.
He explains how we are to keep this Sabbath.
Is it such a fast that I have chosen? A day for a man to afflict his soul? Is it to bow down his head as a bulrush, and to spread sackcloth and ashes under him? Will you call this a fast, and an acceptable day to the LORD?
Is not this the fast that I have chosen?
To loose the bands of wickedness, to undo the heavy burdens, and to let the oppressed go free, and that you break every yoke? [through spiritual teaching.]
Is it not to deal your bread to the hungry, and that you bring the poor that are cast out to your house? When you see the naked, that you cover him; and that you hide not yourself from your own flesh? [through practical works.]
Then shall your light break forth as the morning, and your health shall spring forth speedily: and your righteousness shall go before you [your reputation as a Christian will precede you]; [but] the glory of the LORD shall be your rearward [but only the knowledge of Jesus and His righteousness will be left behind you].
Then shall you call, and the LORD shall answer; you shall cry, and He shall say, "Here I am." If you take away from the midst of you the yoke [the control of others], the putting forth of the finger, and speaking vanity [vain things]; and if you draw out your soul to the hungry, and satisfy the afflicted soul; then shall your light rise in obscurity, and your darkness be as the noon day: and the LORD shall guide you continually, and satisfy your soul in drought, and make fat your bones: and you shall be like a watered garden, and like a spring of water, whose waters fail not.
And they that shall be of you shall build the old waste places. You shall raise up the foundations of many generations; and you shall be called,
"The repairer of the breach",
"The restorer of paths to dwell in",
if you turn away your foot from the Sabbath, from doing your pleasure on My holy day; and call the Sabbath a delight, the holy of the LORD, honourable; and shall honour Him, not doing your own ways, nor finding your own pleasure, nor speaking your own words.
Then shall you delight yourself in the LORD; and I will cause you to ride upon the high places of the earth, and feed you with the heritage of Jacob your father: for the mouth of the LORD has spoken it.
We, in these days, are called to "raise up the foundations of many generations." As you have seen, the Sabbath truth is one of the foundations which has been obscured and nearly removed in the professed Christian world in the past, but now there is an opportunity for you to redeem that failure. You can help to replace that truth, so that, when the past generations are called back into the light of day through the first resurrection, they will see and accept it.
The "breach" you may "repair" is the same as the one mentioned in the following verses. The "Jerusalem" also mentioned here represents the whole religious world arrayed against the Son of God as the Jews were in the days of His crucifixion. In that time He could not stop the retribution which was to fall on them (Luke 23:26-31), and today it is the same He cannot stop what He describes as the "melting". Rejected again, He cannot impose His protection where it is not wanted (the keeping of the Sabbath is the sign of obedience and acceptance), and just as the literal Jerusalem was destroyed by Roman armies because of their defiance, so the worlds churches will be shattered because of their rejection of His Sabbath.
And the word of the LORD came to me, saying,
Son of man, the house of Israel is to Me become dross [worthless]: all they are brass, and tin, and iron, and lead, in the midst of the furnace; they are even the dross of silver. [See also Malachi 3:1-5.]
Therefore thus says the Lord GOD [to them]; Because you are all become dross, behold, therefore I will gather you into the midst of Jerusalem. As they gather silver, and brass, and iron, and lead, and tin, into the midst of the furnace, to blow the fire upon it, to melt it; so will I gather you in My anger and in My fury, and I will leave you there, and melt you.
Yes, I will gather you, and blow upon you in the fire of My wrath, and you shall be melted in the midst thereof. As silver is melted in the midst of the furnace, so shall you be melted in the midst thereof; and you shall know that I the LORD have poured out my fury upon you.
And the word of the LORD came to me, saying,
Son of man, say to her, You are the land that is not cleansed, nor rained upon in the day of indignation. There is a conspiracy of her prophets in the midst thereof, like a roaring lion ravening the prey; they have devoured souls; they have taken the treasure and precious things; they have made her many widows in the midst thereof. Her priests have violated My law, and have profaned My holy things: they have put no difference between the holy and profane, neither have they showed difference between the unclean and the clean, and have hid their eyes from My Sabbaths, and I am profaned among them.
Her princes [rulers] in the midst thereof are like wolves ravening the prey, to shed blood, and to destroy souls, to get dishonest gain. And her prophets have daubed them with untempered mortar [self-made righteousness], seeing vanity [vain things], and divining lies to them, saying, "Thus says the Lord GOD", when the LORD has not spoken. The people of the land have used oppression, and exercised robbery, and have vexed the poor and needy: yes, they have oppressed the stranger wrongfully.
And I sought for a man among them, that should make up the hedge, and stand in the gap before Me for the land, that I should not destroy it: but I found none. Therefore have I poured out My indignation upon them; I have consumed them with the fire of my wrath: their own way have I recompensed upon their heads, says the Lord GOD.
Without one righteous man among them they must feel the full effect of their rejection of His mercy. Like Noah and his family, those who are righteous in the world will be removed from it by an "ark" and the rest will meet their "flood". Sad day, indeed!
Come, My people, enter you into your chambers, and shut your doors about you: hide yourself as it were for a little moment, until the indignation be overpast. For, behold, the LORD comes out of His place to punish the inhabitants of the earth for their iniquity: the earth also shall disclose her blood, and shall no more cover her slain.
Where will you be in that day? Protected by a loving Saviour or exposed to the full justice of God without mercy? Your choice!
But before that day, these events will come to pass.
And I will set a sign among them [the Sabbath], and I will send those that escape of them [the obedient ones] to the nations, to Tarshish, Pul, and Lud, that draw the bow, to Tubal, and Javan, to the isles afar off, that have not heard My fame, neither have seen My glory; and they shall declare My glory [character] among the Gentiles [telling them about My Sabbath]. And they shall bring all your brothers and sisters for an offering to the LORD out of all nations upon horses, and in chariots, and in litters, and upon mules, and upon swift beasts, to My holy mountain Jerusalem [the Sabbath-keeping church], says the LORD, as the children of Israel bring an offering in a clean vessel into the house of the LORD.
And I will also take of them for priests and for Levites, says the LORD. For as the new heavens and the new earth, which I will make, shall remain before Me, says the LORD, so shall your seed and your name remain.
And it shall come to pass, that from one new moon to another, and from one Sabbath to another [in the new world], shall all flesh come to worship before Me, says the LORD.
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