Sent: July 3, 2021 11:39 PM
To: Victor Hafichuk
Subject: Physical Sabbath keeping, Law, Grace
I have to say something with regards to Sabbath keeping of which I believe The Lord gave me understanding.
On 03/07/21 in the morning hours I was finishing reading about tithes and offerings from www.thepathoftruth.com and the highlight for me was that The Lord loves a cheerful giver , one who gives not because he has to but because he wants to. I asked The Lord to give me a heart that gives willingly and cheerfully. Not that I was not willing but that I would always be a willing one, a cheerful one.Then as I relaxed on the bed, I was contemplating my attitude on Sabbath keeping. This 03/07/21 was a Saturday and I was keeping Sabbath as per your teaching. After pondering I came to the conclusion that I was keeping Sabbath not because I wanted to, or desired for that matter but because I had to. I was concerned.
I remembered Paul the apostle had addressed the subject of law and faith and read through Romans10 and Galatians, especially from 2:11-…continuing.
Then it became clear to me that keeping the Sabbath from Friday evening to Saturday evening is keeping the Law by works. I contemplated it and realised the physical keeping had nothing to do with faith but is a work.
You have written on one of the articles on Sabbath from thepathoftruth,
A section of it reads,
““You say we’re to “depend on Him and only Him to walk in the doctrine of Christ and keep His commandments….” In general, we agree, depending on how you define the “doctrine of Christ.” But you need to consider the latter part of your sentence – “…which he gave us that fulfills all the law and the prophets.” It was His death and resurrection that fulfilled the Law and provides the grace for us to keep it, through the gift of His Holy Spirit, that grace being manifest in love, which is summed up in the two great commandments: ““
You replied in black saying that it was The Lord’s death and resurrection that fulfilled the Law and provides the grace for us to keep it by the gift of His Spirit, grace being manifest in love...
In this instance, I agree totally except I’m not sure how you interpreted it. I think the word to note then would be, ” keep”.
In another section you said,
““When we are carnal, how do we establish the Law? We don’t; the Law is applied to us. But when we become spiritual, that is, when we become sons and daughters of the Lord, Who is spiritual, we’re able to bear like fruit and establish and apply the Law by His Resurrection power and nature.”“
But in this section I then could see your interpretation. You say that when we become spiritual, we’re able to bear like fruit and establish and apply the Law by His Resurrection power and nature.
I would then be concerned with the word “apply”.
Let us connect with the word “keep” from the previous illustration so that I can get to my point.
If we establish the law by the Resurrection power of The Lord, which is an act of Faith, why would we, as believers, then need to apply the same law by the Resurrection power of The Lord?
If we establish, then the work is done and there is no need to go back and do it any other way.
Galatians 3: NKJV
¹ O foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you that you should not obey the truth, before whose eyes Jesus Christ was clearly portrayed among you as crucified?
² This only I want to learn from you: Did you receive the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?
³ Are you so foolish? Having begun in the Spirit, are you now being made perfect by the flesh?
⁴ Have you suffered so many things in vain–if indeed it was in vain?
⁵ Therefore He who supplies the Spirit to you and works miracles among you, does He do it by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?-–
⁶ just as Abraham “believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness.”
Do we then become lawless if we don’t go back and apply the Law? I don’t think so. I believe it is sufficient if we just establish the Law by faith. What kind of faith is this that establishes the Law so that we may get understanding?
Romans 10 NKJV
¹ Brethren, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for Israel is that they may be saved.
² For I bear them witness that they have a zeal for God, but not according to knowledge.
³ For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and seeking to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted to the righteousness of God.
⁴ For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes.
⁵ For Moses writes about the righteousness which is of the law, “The man who does those things shall live by them.”
⁶ But the righteousness of faith speaks in this way, “Do not say in your heart, ‘Who will ascend into heaven?’ ” (that is, to bring Christ down from above)
⁷ or, ” ‘Who will descend into the abyss?’ ” (that is, to bring Christ up from the dead).
⁸ But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart” (that is, the word of faith which we preach):
⁹ that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.
¹⁰ For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.
¹¹ For the Scripture says, “Whoever believes on Him will not be put to shame.”
¹² For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek, for the same Lord over all is rich to all who call upon Him.
¹³ For “whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
So that is the faith from God. A gift and grace upon the soul being saved.
Therefore anyone who has been given this faith, confessing Jesus as Lord establishes the Law and there is no need to go further and apply the Law again. To what purpose would we as believers be serving by taking this route of applying the Law to ourselves again? How further can we go in confessing Jesus Christ as Lord , seeing that even obtaining that victory within and entering Rest is still confessing Jesus as Lord. Becoming The Sabath by faith through this confession, why should we then take a u-turn and nullify the same Faith by trying to obtain a righteousness that is by works. It may not have been the intention in our keeping the physical Sabath but I believe that is exactly what we are doing. Otherwise Christ died for nothing.
Galatians 2:21 NKJV
“I do not set aside the grace of God; for if righteousness comes through the law, then Christ died in vain.”
This would rob us of the freedom that we have in The Lord.
Galatians 5 NKJV
¹ Stand fast therefore in the liberty by which Christ has made us free, and do not be entangled again with a yoke of bondage.
² Indeed I, Paul, say to you that if you become circumcised, Christ will profit you nothing.
³ And I testify again to every man who becomes circumcised that he is a debtor to keep the whole law.
⁴ You have become estranged from Christ, you who attempt to be justified by law; you have fallen from grace.
⁵ For we through the Spirit eagerly wait for the hope of righteousness by faith.
⁶ For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision avails anything, but faith working through love.
⁷ You ran well. Who hindered you from obeying the truth?
⁸ This persuasion does not come from Him who calls you.
⁹ A little leaven leavens the whole lump.
¹⁰ I have confidence in you, in the Lord, that you will have no other mind; but he who troubles you shall bear his judgment, whoever he is.
¹¹ And I, brethren, if I still preach circumcision, why do I still suffer persecution? Then the offense of the cross has ceased.
¹² I could wish that those who trouble you would even cut themselves off!
¹³ For you, brethren, have been called to liberty; only do not use liberty as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another.
¹⁴ For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”
So we are not looking to use our liberty in a way as to indulge the flesh. Whatever good we were doing on the physical Sabath should therefore not be put aside. We should live like that daily in holiness. For we also know that he who is in friendship with the world is an enemy of God. James, the apostle, basically saying that engaging in pleasure is friendship with the world.
Jam 4 (NKJV)
³ You ask and do not receive, because you ask amiss, that you may spend it on your pleasures.
⁴ Adulterers and adulteresses! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Whoever therefore wants to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.
I am not calling for a legalistic approach here, otherwise where would freedom be. Where is the line drawn then? We would have to know from God and then also I believe one cannot judge his actions from appearances. We should consider our motives then. Would we be putting God first and would we be doing whatever it is we would be doing by faith. If not by faith then it becomes sin.
Romans 14 NKJV
²² Do you have faith? Have it to yourself before God. Happy is he who does not condemn himself in what he approves.
²³ But he who doubts is condemned if he eats, because he does not eat from faith; for whatever is not from faith is sin.
Who are the lawless ones then? Or what is lawlessness? The lawless ones first of all are those who don’t take The Name of The Lord Jesus Christ upon themselves in any way. Then, second, and the worst of all, would be those who say, “grace, grace”, and take The Lord’s name in vain, having an interpretation of faith which is not from God and cannot confess Jesus Christ as Lord.
We, who then by the grace of God confess Jesus Christ as Lord, ESTABLISH the Law by faith (from God) and CANNOT be lawless. If we already establish the Law, then there is no need to again apply the Law in any way. Such works may have their own advantages and rewards. For example, biologically, it is good for the body to rest one day of the week after six days of work in order to recuperate. However such works cannot be done with the intention of applying the Law or otherwise. What then would be the difference between a believer and a non believer? Any grace or resurrection power that we would be given by The Lord would be for us to Rest in Him while establishing the Law and not so that we can use this resurrection power to apply the Law.
Those who need to apply the law, being a form of works, are those who need to be restrained and also those who need to be tutored by the Law for a while so that they may cease from their works by faith being led to The Lord.
Galatians 3 NKJV
¹⁹ What purpose then does the law serve? It was added because of transgressions, till the Seed should come to whom the promise was made; and it was appointed through angels by the hand of a mediator.
²⁰ Now a mediator does not mediate for one only, but God is one.
²¹ Is the law then against the promises of God? Certainly not! For if there had been a law given which could have given life, truly righteousness would have been by the law.
²² But the Scripture has confined all under sin, that the promise by faith in Jesus Christ might be given to those who believe.
²³ But before faith came, we were kept under guard by the law, kept for the faith which would afterward be revealed.
²⁴ Therefore the law was our tutor to bring us to Christ, that we might be justified by faith.
²⁵ But after faith has come, we are no longer under a tutor.
²⁶ For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus.
²⁷ For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ.
²⁸ There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.
²⁹ And if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.
Rom 3 (NKJV)
¹⁹ Now we know that whatever the law says, it says to those who are under the law, that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God.
²⁰ Therefore by the deeds of the law no flesh will be justified in His sight, for by the law is the knowledge of sin.
²¹ But now the righteousness of God apart from the law is revealed, being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets,
²² even the righteousness of God, through faith in Jesus Christ, to all and on all who believe. For there is no difference;
²³ for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,
²⁴ being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus,
I would then say that we need to stop our keeping the physical Sabath, a form of works, because we ARE The Sabath, if having entered the Rest of God by the true faith from God. We should stop because it is without gain and more so, dangerous, as we would be ceasing from Grace being required to live by the entire Law and consequently nullifying the work of the cross.
If it is a matter of a man keeping a day in honour of The Lord, then it would mean that it is not necessarily right, but one of not offending our brother or sister in The Lord. Of what benefit would it be to this man who wants to honour The Lord if there is one Way acceptable to God, one righteousness and that is by faith.Therefore at one point if that brother or sister is given to receive The Truth, he/she would go on to do the right thing by faith. Questions arise, in this case ,physical Sabath keeping, as to whether one is doing it in honour of The Lord or is it an act of applying the Law on top of already having established the Law within by faith. Is it acceptable then? I don’t think so.
I come from an edifying standpoint and not a critical one. May The Lord judge my heart if it is in error and lead me in the right path if I’m found to be in error.
All glory and praise to The Lord Jesus Christ. Understanding comes from Him and He is worthy of all honour. Outside The Lord we are nothing and clueless children with no understanding.
From: Victor Hafichuk
Date: Sat, Jul 10, 2021 at 8:17 PM
Subject: RE: Physical Sabath keeping, Law, Grace
Brian, Victor here. I’m sending you Martin’s comments to you before he red or knew of my letter, which you’ll find below after his.
From: Martin VanPopta
Sent: July 5, 2021 10:57 AM
To: Victor Hafichuk, Ronnie Tanner
Subject: Re: Physical Sabath keeping, Law, Grace
I find it funny that the whole problem is expressed in the first little bit.
“After pondering I came to the conclusion that I was keeping Sabbath not because I wanted to, or desired for that matter but because I had to.”
Everything after that point is carnal reasoning to free him from keeping a Law that he doesn’t want to keep.
The expression, “If you love your job, you’ll never have to work another day in your life,” comes to mind. It couldn’t be truer.
Man’s works can be defined as, anything that men do out of an obligation to do the “right thing”.
It doesn’t occur to him for one second that we’re keeping the Sabbath because we love it. It’s a precious gift. I think I’d still want to keep the Sabbath even if someone persuaded me it was the wrong thing to do. What a fool!
I’ll agree with him this far, if he doesn’t want to keep the Sabbath then he shouldn’t even bother. It would just be his works, which Isaiah calls filthy menstrual rags. Why would the Lord want Brian to give him stinky garbage?
It’s like Yoda said, “there is no try”. Which is exactly what Cain’s problem was. Cain had to try. Cain gave to fulfill his requirement to give. God was disgusted with his menstrual rags. Cain got offended.
As long as Brian has to try and please God, his efforts are a waste.
Funny, if we’re to walk in rest and not works, then why is he sending us this laborious tome of religiosity to read through? It was hard enough work for me to skim it, and I barely did that. It was too much like my old job at Onside, sorting through a sewer backup.
Isn’t it divinely ironic, then, that Brian concludes the Sabbath is too much work, and chooses a religious labour camp instead?
It’s funny to me, anyway.
Brian is Satan. That’s who were dealing with here. I’m sure Sean would eat this crap right up.
Now for my letter:
You write: “I have to say something with regards to Sabath keeping of which I believe The Lord gave me understanding.”
No, you don’t “have to,” and you’re wrong about the Lord giving you understanding so, you can stop believing it. Here’s what the Lord has to say about it.
Some questions for you on your dissertation on the Sabbath. Correct my misunderstanding if any and if you can.
Is it true that if you have the Sabbath within, you needn’t keep the physical weekly day of the week, which keeping ministers to the body (and mind and spirit)?
Is it true that man is one, not three, just as God is One and not three, seeing He has made man in His image? One cannot exist without even one of the other two parts. So, how does one separate the body from the soul and spirit on the weekly Sabbath day?
Or do you need to keep a day of the week merely to rest your body, seeing the “flesh profits nothing,” seeing you now have the internal rest?
How is it God specified the seventh day for a spiritual completion by Law if the external doesn’t matter?
How is it that remembering to keep the Sabbath is one of the Ten Commandments? If it is fulfilled within, does that mean it needn’t be fulfilled without? If no need to fulfill without, what about its Nine Companions?
Shall a worshipper of God say, “I no longer need to keep any of the Commandments because I love the Lord” or did the Lord say, “He that has My Commandments and keeps them, he’s the one who loves Me, and I will manifest Myself to him…If anyone loves Me, he will keep My Word, and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our home with him”? (John 14:21, 23).
If you don’t hate anyone, does it mean you’re no longer held to “not murder”? Can you, or would you, ignore the outer because you “have the inner”? Or if you believe yourself free to never lust after a woman with your eyes, you needn’t keep the Law outwardly? Does that apply to all the Commandments?
Of course, if you’re free within from hate and lust, you’re home free when it comes to not murdering or committing adultery or stealing or worshipping other gods, right?
If one isn’t giving with a cheerful heart, does that one cease giving? Does he console himself by saying, “I have it in my heart to give so that’s enough,” or does he seek God to give him what he lacks in the heart so that he may give manifestly, that is, outwardly, out of his pocket, according to God’s pleasure as God would have it and has always had it? Of course, if he doesn’t have it in his heart, he’ll not have it to ask the Lord for it, either.
What of the Lord’s statement that the Sabbath was made for man and not man for the Sabbath? Was He speaking of the external, the internal, or both?
Let me ask you: When God completed His work of a physical creation on the sixth day, did He rest physically or spiritually? Yes, He’s Spirit but He didn’t just create a spiritual world, did He?
When He left the world of the dead, why did He bring His body with Him? Couldn’t He have left it behind, after all?
Why did Paul direct his disciples and the churches to flee fornication and idolatry? Did he believe they didn’t have the Sabbath, or the Laws fulfilled on adultery and idolatry within? Were they to “establish” and “apply” or is one no different from the other?
I may well have expressed things inadequately with the “establishing” and “applying” of the Law. I said, and you quote:
“When we are carnal, how do we establish the Law? We don’t; the Law is applied to us. But when we become spiritual, that is, when we become sons and daughters of the Lord, Who is spiritual, we’re able to bear like fruit and establish and apply the Law by His Resurrection power and nature.”
Yet, I see no problem. Is this a matter of semantics with you? Is there anything wrong with putting on my shoes (establishing) and then walking with them (applying)?
You write: “Therefore anyone who has been given this faith, confessing Jesus as Lord establishes the Law and there is no need to go further and apply the Law again. To what purpose would we as believers be serving by taking this route of applying the Law to ourselves again?”
You write: “We, who then by the grace of God confess Jesus Christ as Lord, ESTABLISH the Law by faith (from God) and CANNOT be lawless. If we already establish the Law, then there is no need to again apply the Law in any way.”
Have you not built your case on semantics and presumptuously, consequently contradicted me in the process?
What about James calling the saints, “adulterers and adulteresses?” If they were such, and he would have no reason to call them such if they weren’t, then could it be that internally, they were breaking the Law on adultery? And, if as James says, “you break one Law, you break them all,” would there be no point in keeping the Laws outwardly, seeing they were breaking them internally? Or was James rebuking them for outwardly breaking the Law of adultery and other Laws?
And when do saints enter the rest, that is, the Sabbath? Have YOU entered the rest? You say you aren’t at rest keeping the Law. Are you at rest not keeping the Law?
What was the Lord talking about when He said, “He who has My Commandments and KEEPS them, he’s the one who loves Me”? Was He speaking of him being at Rest by God’s grace and therefore no longer obliged or responsible to Him for keeping His Law outwardly?
When does the Rest come? How does it come? In other words, when do you enter the Sabbath to rest and to BE the Sabbath? And might you keep the Sabbath as the Seventh Day holy if you have the Sabbath day within?
When Paul spoke of the Law being a tutor, was he speaking of the ceremonial laws or the Ten Spiritual Laws? At what time do the Ten Spiritual Laws usher or tutor one into Rest? Or is the Rest the proof of the Dynamic Presence of the Ten Spiritual Laws?
And if in Rest, will one kill or steal or lust? I would think not. So, if in Rest, will he also remember to keep the Sabbath day – note, “day,” holy?
And if the fulfilled Sabbath is intended to be an internal matter, why the discourse of details, unlike with the other Nine Commandments, as to what and who should rest and how?
Do the animals who are given to rest on the Sabbath come into a Spiritual Rest?
Do you propose to solve your inner problem by dispensing with the outer? If you’re not a cheerful giver, do you dispense with giving? If you lust after women, do you go fornicate?
Isn’t that like the Leftist gun control thinking where they propose to do away with gun violence by taking away guns? Will they also propose to take away cars, knives, arsenic, cyanide, sticks, and stones to do away with violence by those means? Muslim Sharia law even dispenses with fists and feet of those who offend, doesn’t it? But for whom and why?
Are you free of the Law upon becoming a believer or do you trust the Lord to make that freedom real in you? And when and how does He do that? Do you know? Has He accomplished that for you? You claim to know.
By the way, who said you “had to” keep the Sabbath, a gift given by God to man to cease labor after 6 days? And if you do keep the Sabbath within on the Sabbath, how do you NOT keep the Sabbath within on the other 6 days?
Could it well be that you have a problem with keeping the seventh day of the week, the Sabbath, holy, simply because you don’t have that work of Grace within?
I know that for my part, I’m thankful when the Sabbath comes, and it has come to the place where I feel like I’m keeping it every second day now. The week evaporates and there’s that Sabbath back again, joy to the Lord!
Do I feel restrained on the weekly Sabbath day? Only in my outlook and attitude if I let it, but I “keep under my body,” as Paul was “compelled” to do as an apostle of Christ so that after he “established” the Law, he continued to “apply” it lest, after preaching as a minister of the Gospel, he should be a castaway.
Is the Sabbath a ceremonial law or a Spiritual Law? Is burning incense on an altar or circumcision or sacrificing a lamb one of the Ten Commandments?
Is “remembering” to keep the Sabbath day holy resting in the Law? Is it a choice, a matter of simple obedience from a holy heart, or is it keeping the Law?
Is keeping the Law a matter of external exercise in the Levitical requirements or is it walking in the Law of God?
You bring up Paul’s rebuke of the Galatians. Were they offending in keeping the Ten Commandments, the Sabbath being one of them, or were they offending in outer righteousness, like circumcision, for example, laws not specified in the Ten Commandments?
Is walking in the Law of God automatic upon believing or must saints labor to enter Rest?
You say, “It may not have been the intention in our keeping the physical Sabath but I believe that is exactly what we are doing. Otherwise Christ died for nothing.”
Not phrased correctly but I get it. So, who is “we,” Brian?
You say, “I come from an edifying standpoint and not a critical one. May The Lord judge my heart if it is in error and lead me in the right path if I’m found to be in error.”
Really? Because you aren’t ranting and raving or speaking in harsh terms, does that necessarily mean you aren’t critical or that you’re edifying? I don’t see how direct statements of my being in error and telling me what we should believe and how we should conduct ourselves is merely edification.
I have to say I find you arrogant and presumptuous in this, nothing less. It seems to me you haven’t availed yourself of my teachings and apprehended them as you suppose. You may want to start all over again. However, you don’t believe who I am not because you’re not intelligent enough but because God hasn’t given the blessing to you, yet you exult in your supposed victory.
With statements of edification like yours, what would your critical way be like?
So, I say the Lord is answering your wish of “judging your heart if it is in error and leading you in the right path if you’re found to be in error.”
What do you say?
You say, “All glory and praise to The Lord Jesus Christ. Understanding comes from Him and He is worthy of all honour. Outside The Lord we are nothing and clueless children with no understanding.”
I see you believe you’ve reached the right conclusion concerning the Fourth Commandment and attribute your understanding to the Lord. I’m thinking you’ve strayed in pride, presumption, and error, a bit of the “Korah Komplex.” Which suggests your last sentence applies to you, though quite obviously, you don’t think so.
I have a suggestion for you, Brian: Get off your uncomfortable rest bed on the Sabbath and get to work with the servile, make your servants and animals work, and see how Sabbatical it is for you. Then perhaps you’ll have rest. Let us know how it “works” for you.