The Fourth Commandment
Key to a Relationship With Our Creator
Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord your God. In it you shall do no work: you, nor your son, nor your daughter, nor your male servant, nor your female servant, nor your cattle, nor your stranger who is within your gates. For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and hallowed it (Exodus 20:8-11).
As days in the Bible are reckoned from sunset to sunset (Leviticus 23:32) the Sabbath begins at sunset Friday evening and ends at sunset Saturday evening. The Sabbath, the seventh day of the week, was set apart by God as a time of rest and spiritual rejuvenation. It is a special opportunity to draw closer to our Creator, a time He designated for us to enhance our relationship with Him—to learn how to better love, worship and relate to Him. Many Christians were taught to believe that Jesus Christ ignored this commandment, leaving us free from the burden of keeping it- but that’s not true.
Yashua (aka Jesus) came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up. And as his custom was, he went into the synagogue on the Sabbath day and stood up to read” (Luke 4:16). Yashua used God’s Sabbaths for their intended purpose—to help people develop a personal relationship with their Creator.
After Yashua’s death and resurrection, his apostles followed his example in their observance of the Sabbath day. “Then Paul, as his custom was , went in to them, and for three Sabbaths reasoned with them from the Scriptures” (Acts 17:2). “And he reasoned in the synagogue every Sabbath , and persuaded both Jews and Greeks” (Acts 18:4).
Today, however, most people who profess to follow Jesus do not follow the example set by him and his apostles. Most fail to realize that the rejection of the Sabbath as the Christian day of worship did not start until almost 300 years after Yashua’s ministry on earth.
The substitution of Sunday for the Sabbath took hold largely through a political decision made by the Roman Emperor Constantine, who legalized Christianity to secure political advantage over a defeated contender for the office of emperor. Constantine was quick to grasp the political advantage of accepting and supporting Christians, but that acceptance came with a price—state control over all religious matters.
In A.D. 321 Constantine declared Sunday in honor of the pagan sun god, to be the official day of rest in the Roman Empire, making it the day of choice for church assemblies. But nowhere is it recorded in scripture that God the Father or Yashua the Messiah ever granted permission to change the time of the Sabbath from the seventh day to Sunday, the first day of the week. The first-century apostles did not change it. Indeed, no human being, institution or state has ever had the right to tamper with what God has set apart as holy. God’s command is simple and easy to understand but it so frequently ignored, attacked and explained away and many are confused today as to which day is actually the Sabbath due to the Papacy’s continuance of what Constantine declared in AD 321. The Pope actually refers to Saturday as “the Jewish Sabbath”, God never called the Sabbath “Jewish”; keeping the Sabbath is a commandment for all who love God to obey.
The Sabbath, the day set aside to remind us regularly that our Creator is the only true God, is vital to our relationship with Him. It shapes the way we perceive and worship Him. Therefore, He commands us to remember the Sabbath by formally worshiping Him on that day. The Sabbath is also a special day to concentrate on developing our spiritual relationship with God. Although it is a day of rest from our normal routines and a time for rejuvenation, it is not a day to do nothing, as some assume. On the contrary, the Sabbath is a special day on which we dramatically change the focus of our activity. God intended that it be a delightful period during which we busily draw closer to Him .
God said, through Isaiah: “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 day of the Lord honorable, and shall honor Him, not doing your own ways, nor finding your own pleasure, nor speaking your own words, then you shall delight yourself in the Lord; and I will cause you to ride on the high hills of the earth, and feed you with the heritage [the abundance of blessings] of Jacob your father. The mouth of the Lord has spoken” (Isaiah 58:13-14).
Indeed, to “delight yourself in the Lord” is one of the key reasons we should cease, for the 24 hours of the Sabbath, from the labor and normal activities that consume our time the other six days of the week.
God wants us to take special time to worship Him, our Creator. That is what the Sabbath—the seventh day of the week—provides.
The Hebrew word for Sabbath, shabbath , means “to cease, to pause or take an intermission.” On the Sabbath we are to take the day off from our regular activities and devote our time and attention to our Creator. Why? Because in six days God set in order “the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and hallowed it” (Exodus 20:11). The Sabbath, in a different way from any other commandment, keeps us in touch with how real God is as our Creator.
WHAT DOES ALL OF THIS HAVE TO DO WITH RECEIVING THE “MARK OF THE BEAST?”
So what is the mark of the beast? the beast mark cannot be a physical mark like a microchip or tattoo or ID card. Why? Because Revelation 13:14 it says that “deception” is involved in this issue.
Revelation 13:14 …’And deceived them that dwell on the earth by the mean of those miracles which he had power to do in the sight of the beast.’
There is no deception in forcing people to take a physical mark like a microchip. Satan is the arch deceiver and he is not going to force people to take a physical mark. There is no deception in that whatsoever and that is not how Satan works. So what is the mark? Revelation 14 gives us a clue.
Revelation 14:12 …’Here is the patience of the saints. Here are they that keep the commandments of God and the faith of Yashua’.
Now right before this verse, the third angel explains that those who do take the mark of the beast will receive the full wrath of God. Which means the verse above is telling us about those who don’t take the mark. And what are they doing? They are keeping the commandments of God and the faith of Yashua. So the mark of the beast is in some way connected to the commandments of God. Which makes sense, as this issue is all to do with worship and obedience. Look at what it also says in Revelation 14.
Revelation 14:9 …’And the third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice. If any man WORSHIP the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand ….’
The issue of the mark of the beast has to do with WORSHIP! Somehow, Satan is going to deceive the world into giving their allegiance to the beast and it’s image and they will end up spiritually worshiping and obeying the beast instead of worshiping and obeying God. But God’s end time saints will be faithful to His commandments and will know the truth, and will continue to obey God and keep His commandments.
What was it that the deceivers used to get Daniel thrown into the Lions den? Daniel 6:5 …’Then said these men, We shall not find any occasion against this Daniel, except we find it against him concerning the law of his God‘ … Knowing that Daniel would be faithful to the law of God, these deceivers caused the king to institute a secular law which would go against one of God’s commandments. In the same way, the beast kingdom will institute a law (mark of the beast) which will be in opposition to the commandments of God, and will be used to condemn God’s people in the end.
The sea beast of Revelation 13 is the Papal Church of Rome. Which means the mark of the beast is in fact that mark of the Roman Catholic Church. So has the Roman Catholic Church done anything in connection with the commandments of God that could be regarded as her “mark”? Yes, and this was prophesied to happen in the book of Daniel with the little horn power which again is the Papal Church of Rome.
Daniel 7:25 …’And he [the little horn] shall speak great words against the Most High, and shall wear out the saints of the Most High, and think to change times and laws.’
So the Roman Catholic Church would think to change “time” and the law of God. Did they ever do this? Yes. If you take a look at the Roman Catholic Ten Commandments, you will see that they have made changes to the commandments of God (think to change law). And the Roman Catholic Church boasts that it is they who changed the weekly Sabbath day from the 7th day to the 1st (think to change time), of which there is no Biblical authority for any such change. Take a look at the following quotes with regards to this sabbath “change”.
Question. Have you any other way of proving that the church has power to institute festivals of precept?
Answer. Had she not such power, she could not have done that in which all modern religionists agree with her.- she could not have substituted the observance of Sunday, the first day of the week, for the observance of Saturday, the seventh day, a change for which there is no Scriptural authority.” (Doctrinal Catechism, Rev. Stephen Keenan (Kenedy, New York), p. 174 – source)
Question. How prove you that the church hath power to command feasts and holy days?
Answer.By the very act of changing the Sabbath into Sunday, which Protestants allow of; and therefore they fondly contradict themselves by keeping Sunday strictly, and breaking most other feasts commanded by the same church.
Question. How prove you that?
Answer.Because by keeping Sunday they acknowledge the church’s power to ordain feasts, and to command them under sin.” (The Douay Catechism, Abridgment of Christian Doctrine (Kenedy, New York), p. 58 – source)
“As Pope Benedict says, Sunday is not just a suspension of ordinary activities, but a time when ‘Christians discover the Eucharistic form that their lives are meant to have.’ The way we celebrate Sunday will affect the way we live the remainder of the week and is a mark of Christian identityfrom generation to generation.” (Cardinal Sean P. O’Malley, Pastoral Letter, November 20, 2011 source)
Yes, the Roman Catholic Church is guilty of changing the law of God. The very commandments that the saints of Revelation 14:12 are keeping which stops them from receiving the mark of the beast. And remember, the issue of the mark of the beast is all about worship and obedience. Will we worship and obey the beast and receive it’s mark, or worship and obey God? Don’t think that you will need to get down on your knees to worship the beast. All you will need to do is give allegiance to the beast and accept it’s authority over God, and this would be deemed as worship.
Sunday has not yet been enforced as a day of rest yet. But the Roman Catholic Church, along with many other churches and institutions, including trade unions, are now actively pushing for a Sunday law to be enforced as a national and international day of rest. And this is in direct opposition to the sabbath rest that God instituted during creation week. And this places the authority of the Roman Catholic Church above the authority of our Heavenly Father. Which of course is an abomination!
The 4th commandment concerning the seventh day sabbath is the ONLY commandment that tells us who it is we worship. It tells us that we worship the Creator of heaven and earth. It is the central commandment that connects God with mankind, and it contains the seal of God of which the end time saints receive. So anyone who accepts the Sunday law that is going to be enforced will be giving their allegiance and worship to the beast (Roman Catholic Church) instead of God. Then they will be marked (spiritually) with the mark of the beast, either in their forehead, or in their hand. The forehead represents the group of people who freely make their decision in their minds and give their loyalty to the beast, ie., professing Christians who accept the “authority” of the Roman Catholic Church. The hand represents the group of people who just go along with it because of economic pressure, and their actions are in accordance with the mark of the beast, ie., non believers. Which is why it says they get the mark in their foreheads OR their hand.
Few grasp the extent of society’s indoctrination by Satan. As the real “god of this age” (2 Corinthians 4:4), he has deceived most of humankind (Revelation 12:9). The whole world falls prey to his influence (1 John 5:19). His objective has always been to destroy the relationship between the true God and humanity. He wants nothing more than to thwart people from developing a loving relationship with their Creator—that being the purpose of the Fourth Commandment. He wants to prevent us from reaching our incredible destiny in God’s family! TO BE CONTINUED…