Huwebes, Abril 5, 2012

On The Observance Of Sabbath Day

On The Observance Of Sabbath Day

GOD'S MESSAGE/March 2007

I understand that the founder of the INC used to be a Seventh-day Adventist, which means he understood the importance of observing the Sabbath from the standpoint of an Adventist.  Can you please explain to me why he did not include Sabbath observance as a part of the practices of INC members?

Glenn D. Whitt II

Editor's reply:
     We must first clarify and rectify certain points in your letter.  If the person you are referring to in your letter as "the founder of the INC" is Brother Felix Manalo, we would like to make it clear that he is not the founder of the Iglesia ni Cristo.  Brother Felix Manalo is the man whom we recognize and believe as God's messenger who was instrumental for the emergence of the Iglesia ni Cristo in these last days as attested to by biblical prophecies (Isa. 46:11 [ From the east I summon a bird of prey; from a far-off land, a man to fulfill my purpose. What I have said, that will I bring about; what I have planned, that will I do.]; 42:9-10 [ See, the former things have taken place, and new things I declare; before they spring into being I announce them to you.  Sing to the LORD a new song, his praise from the ends of the earth, you who go down to the sea, and all that is in it, you islands, and all who live in them. ]; Rev. 7:2-3 [2 Then I saw another angel coming up from the east, having the seal of the living God. He called out in a loud voice to the four angels who had been given power to harm the land and the sea: 3 "Do not harm the land or the sea or the trees until we put a seal on the foreheads of the servants of our God."]).
     Before Brother Felix Manalo was sent by God to preach the Iglesia ni Cristo, he was once a member of the Seventh-day Adventist.  However he left that religion in search of the truth and of the true religion.  brother Manalo, being once a member of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, understood the importance of observing the Sabbath from the standpoint of an Adventist.  However, he came to understand, from the biblical standpoint, that observing the Sabbath in the Christian Era is unbiblical.

     Observing the Sabbath was God's command to His ancient nation, Israel.  It was one of the ten commandments God gave to Moses to be observed by ancient Israel as a symbol of the Lord's covenant with them and to commemorate their deliverance from bondage in Egypt (Mal. 4:4 ["Remember the law of my servant Moses, the decrees and laws I gave him at Horeb for all Israel.]; Exod . 31:16  [The Israelites are to observe the Sabbath, celebrating it for the generations to come as a lasting covenant.] ; Deut. 5:15 [Remember that you were slaves in Egypt and that the LORD your God brought you out of there with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm. Therefore the LORD your God has commanded you to observe the Sabbath day.]).  But, the same law that supposes that no work should be done during the Sabbath day no longer applies to God's people in the Christian Era.  Apostle Paul taught:

     "Let no one criticize you in matter of food or drink or for not observing festivals, new moons or the sabbath.(Col. 2:16, Christian Community Bible)

     In fact, even during the time of the Israelites, God had put an end to the observance of Sabbath and caused it to be forgotten (Hos. 2:11, Revised Standard version [ And I will put an end to all her mirth, her feasts, her new moons, her sabbaths, and all her appointed feasts.]; Lam 2:6, NKJV     [ He has done violence to His tabernacle, [As if it were] a garden; He has destroyed His place of assembly; The LORD has caused The appointed feasts and Sabbaths to be forgotten in Zion. In His burning indignation He has spurned the king and the priest. ]).

     That is why we can read from the Holy Scriptures that the Lord Jesus Christ himself stated that "it is lawful to do good on the Sabbath" (Matt. 12:12, New International Version [ How much more valuable is a person than a sheep! Therefore it is lawful to do good on the Sabbath.”]).  He even healed sick people on the Sabbath day (Matt.12:10-13 [
10 and a man with a shriveled hand was there. Looking for a reason to bring charges against Jesus, they asked him, “Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath?”  11 He said to them, “If any of you has a sheep and it falls into a pit on the Sabbath, will you not take hold of it and lift it out? 12 How much more valuable is a person than a sheep! Therefore it is lawful to do good on the Sabbath.”
 13 Then he said to the man, “Stretch out your hand.” So he stretched it out and it was completely restored, just as sound as the other.] ;Luke 13:10-17
[ 10 On a Sabbath Jesus was teaching in one of the synagogues, 11 and a woman was there who had been crippled by a spirit for eighteen years. She was bent over and could not straighten up at all. 12 When Jesus saw her, he called her forward and said to her, “Woman, you are set free from your infirmity.” 13 Then he put his hands on her, and immediately she straightened up and praised God.
 14 Indignant because Jesus had healed on the Sabbath, the synagogue leader said to the people, “There are six days for work. So come and be healed on those days, not on the Sabbath.”
 15 The Lord answered him, “You hypocrites! Doesn’t each of you on the Sabbath untie your ox or donkey from the stall and lead it out to give it water? 16 Then should not this woman, a daughter of Abraham, whom Satan has kept bound for eighteen long years, be set free on the Sabbath day from what bound her?”
 17 When he said this, all his opponents were humiliated, but the people were delighted with all the wonderful things he was doing.])

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Bible Study Suggestion: If you have further questions, please feel free to visit the Iglesia ni Cristo congregation nearest you. A minister or an evangelical worker would be happy to answer any biblical question you have in mind.