What is the biblical basis why the Iglesia ni Cristo does not observe the Sabbath?
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Sabbath days are over

Letter to the Editor:
PASUGO, July 1995, p.2

I AM A Catholic who has attended the worship services of different religious denominations.       I also read the Holy Scriptures.

In the Bible, specially in Exodus 20:8-9, it is stated that the Sabbath should be remembered and kept holy. It is also stated in the verse that for six days a man should work and on the seventh day he should rest.

My question is this: Why is the Sabbath not observed anymore in our time, the Christian era?     Is the non-observance of the Sabbath in our time based on the Bible?

Jimer Henson
Isabela, Philippines

Editor's reply:

The observance of the Sabbath, along with the other decrees given by God comprising the Ten Commandments, was exclusively given to Israel. This can be read in Deuteronomy 5:1-3, 12-14, thus:

“Moses summoned all Israel and said: Hear, O Israel, the decrees and laws I declare in your hearing today. Learn them and be sure to follow them. The LORD our God made a covenant with us at Horeb. It was not with our fathers that the LORD made this covenant, but with all of us who are alive here today.

“Observe the Sabbath day by keeping it holy, as the LORD your God has commanded you. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the LORD your God. On it you shall not do any work, neither you, nor your son or daughter, nor your manservant or maidservant, nor your ox, your donkey or any of your gates, so that your manservant and maidservant may rest, as you do.” (New International Version)

With the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ came a new dispensation of time. This is known as the Christian era. In the present dispensation, a new law supersedes the law of Moses. Why was there a change in the law? Because with the birth of the Savior came a change in the priesthood. This change also necessitated a change in the law (cf. Heb. 7:12).

12 For when the priesthood is changed, the law must be changed also. (Heb. 7:12, NIV)

Thus, the law of Moses and the writings of the prophets were in effect only up to the time of John the Baptist (cf. Lk. 16:16).

16 “The Law of Moses and the writings of the prophets were in effect up to the time of John the Baptist; since then the Good News about the Kingdom of God is being told, and everyone forces their way in. (Lk. 16:16, Today’s English Version).

This can also be gleaned in Matthew 22:37-40, thus:

“Jesus answered, ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind’. This is the greatest and the most important commandment is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as you love yourself’. The whole Law of Moses and the teachings of the prophets depend on these two commandments.” (TEV)

The Sabbath is no longer observed in the Christian era. Neither the Lord Jesus Christ Himself (cf. John 5:18) nor the apostles observed the Sabbath (cf. Lk. 6:1-5).

18 This saying made the Jewish authorities all the more determined to kill him; not only had he broken the Sabbath law, but he had said that God was his own Father and in this way had made himself equal with God. (John 5:18, TEV)

Jesus was walking through some wheat fields on a Sabbath. His disciples began to pick the heads of wheat, rub them in their hands, and eat the grain. Some Pharisees asked, “Why are you doing what our Law says you cannot do on the Sabbath?”

Jesus answered them, “Haven't you read what David did when he and his men were hungry? He went into the house of God, took the bread offered to God, ate it, and gave it also to his men. Yet it is against our Law for anyone except the priests to eat that bread.”

And Jesus concluded, “The Son of Man is Lord of the Sabbath.” (Lk. 6:1-5,  TEV)

Which is why the Apostle Paul stated:

“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.” (Col. 2:16, KJV)    



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. For the latest Worship Service Directory of Iglesia ni Cristo Locales and Congregations outside the Philippines, please visit www.iglesianicristoworshipservice.com or just click link at home page.

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