Sabbath-keeping denominations are boastful about their claim of being the true church prophesied in the Holy Scriptures. Since the Bible often speak about the sanctity of the Sabbath and its significance as the sign of God to His people, these sabbath-keeping denominations are very much confident to defend their doctrines against their critics and even against those non-sabbath keeping churches who claim to be the true Church of God.
Foremost among these sabbath-keeping denominations is the Seventh-Day Adventist Church, the largest sabbath-keeping organization based in the United States.
Seventh-Day Adventists believed that the Sabbath is the binding sign between God and His people, the Church who keeps the commandments of God written upon tables of stones. It is the sign that the power of God moves upon them and sanctifies them.
However, if we will try to review some of the statements given by their own leaders and Church writers describing the current spiritual status of the Church in its entirety, we will wonder why;
“An inspired pen sums up the Adventist problem today very succinctly and accurately: ‘The line of demarcation between wordlings and many professed Christians is almost indistinguishable. Many who once were earnest Adventist are conforming to the world – to its practices, its customs, its selfishness. Instead of leading the world to render obedience to God’s law, the church is uniting more and more closely with the world in transgression. Daily the church is becoming converted to the world.’ (Testimonies, vol. 8, pp.118,119)
Do these words apply to God’s people today? Look carefully and prayerfully at some problems that exist in the church today. Adventist have a sin problem. Adventists have a drug problem. Adventist have an apostasy problem.” (Adventist Review, January 21,1988, p.181)
What happened to the sabbath-keeping Church? What then is the significance of a sabbath, the sign of God’s sanctification, if the Church itself admits their spiritual failure? This is because they neglected to remember the most important sabbath given by God to His Church. They did not follow the commandments of God perfectly. The Scriptures declared; “Moreover also I gave them my sabbaths“, but the Church focused her obedience only to one sabbath, the 7th day of week. The word “sabbaths” is in the plural term, saying the Church must observe not only a single sabbath, but all the sabbaths given by God to the Church. Is there any other sabbath given to the Church? In the Book of Hebrews, it says;
There remaineth therefore a rest to the people of God. (Hebrews 4:9)
This is not saying that the seventh-day sabbath written in the tables of stone was already done away or become obsolete, what we are trying to emphasize is that God added another sabbath for the Church. The verse says, “There remaineth therefore a rest to the people of God“. It didn’t say, “There remaineth therefore ONLY ONE rest to the people of God. ” So what is this another sabbath as the Hebrew writer mentioned in his letter? In verse 8 it says;
For if Jesus had given them rest, then would he not afterward have spoken of another day.
Yes, this sabbath pertains to another day – a day different from what was given at Sinai. In verse 7, it explains;
Again, he limiteth a certain day, saying in David, To day, after so long a time; as it is said, To day if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts.
The new sabbath for the Church was the one referred in the songs of David, so opening the psalms of David, we will discover a verse that mentions the day which the Lord God had made for His people. And it says;
I will praise thee: for thou hast heard me, and art become my salvation.
This is the day which the LORD hath made; we will rejoice and be glad in it. (Psalms 118:21-24)
What is the day that the Lord hath made? That another day and another sabbath given to be observed by the Church? It’s Christ – Head Stone of the corner.
Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God;
Jesus is the Head Stone of the corner, the day that the Lord hath made, the remaining sabbath for the House of God. Now, someone might ask me, “Is Jesus a twenty-four hour period that we may say He is a sabbath?” Of course not! There was a sabbath that doesn’t only last for 24 hours, but even endure unto everlasting. And that sabbath is Christ Himself, according to the Bible.
Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever. (Hebrews 13:8)
Going back to our sabbath-keeping friends. The reason why they failed from
having a sanctified life in spite of their high esteem to the Sabbath of the 4th Command is because they failed to remember the most important Sabbath of the Bible – our Lord Jesus Christ. Although they displayed an outstanding defense for their doctrine, and proven to be a well-informed people about the details of the laws, sabbath observance will never be a sign of sanctification unless they will observe first and foremose the most important part of the Sabbath Doctrine which is Christ. Hence, Adventist Church fell badly. Their own prophetess, Ellen White, said;
“The church is in the Laodicean state. The presence of God is not in her midst… Abridge the work, limit your labors, and you remove your Helper… What a terrible thing it is to exclude Christ from His own temple! What a loss to the church!” (Notebook Leaflets, vol 1, p 99.)