“So let no one judge you in food or in drink, or regarding a festival or a new moon or sabbaths.”
The first day of the week is Sunday; the seventh day of the week is Saturday. If we were to keep the Sabbath day, we would worship on Saturday. Does the Bible teach that the Christian is to worship on Saturday?
The word “sabbath” means seven. The Bible uses the “sabbath” most commonly of the seventh day of the week– Saturday. “Sabbath” is used more broadly in the sense of a protracted festival set apart for a special occasion.
The root for “sabbaths” means to cease, desist. The word came to mean a complete cessation. The idea is not relaxation or refreshment but the cessation of activity. For six days, God created, and on the seventh, he rested. The seventh day is a commemoration of grace– God did the doing. We rest in that.
The observation of Israel’s seventh day of the week was a “sign” between God and his people. God rested after six days of creation (Exodus 31:16-17, 20:8-11). Two treatises of the Mishna are entirely occupied with regulations for observances. Eventually, these regulations became a burden to Israel due to over systemization of their religion. Jesus liberated people from the vexatious traditional burdensome accretions, which became an end in themselves (Matthew12:1-13; John 5:5-16). Our Lord made the Sabbath a means to an end.
For the first three centuries of Christianity, “sabbaths” were never confounded with the first day of the week (Romans 14:5; Galatians 4:9-11). Those who place Christians under legalism make an artificial separation between the ceremonial and moral law. They claim that God did not annul the sabbath.
The Sabbath is the only one of the Ten Commandments not repeated in the New Testament. When God launched the church and rejected the nation Israel, Christians met on Sunday, not Saturday (Acts 20:7; 1 Corinthians 16:2). Our passage censures Sabbath observance (Colossians 2:16). This rejection of the Sabbath was because the law was only a shadow of the reality to come. Christ and his work were the reality (Hebrews 8:5,10:1). What the Old Testament foreshadowed our Lord fulfilled (Matthew 5:17; Romans 8:3-4).
The Bible places no special privilege upon worship on special days.
The ancient heresy of Gnosticism appears widely today under the name of the New Age Movement. It seeks the Oneness of all things. They tell us that we are all part of the universe of created matter. We unite in Oneness with God.
They claim that we can escape from the self and move into oneness with the universe. That is why Paul refers to it here as a “false humility.” It claims to move you beyond self. However, in actual practice, they focus on self. The fundamental goal is to develop all your self powers. We call this the human potential movement. All you need is already there inside you. All you need to do is bring it out and develop your possibilities and full potential.
The new age movement engages strange spirit beings, astrology, ouija boards, tarot cards, assorted holy men, psychics, swamis, yogis, and gurus. All of these purport to offer help in increasing our understanding to fulfill the possibilities of our humanity. These activities are the present-day manifestations of the heresy of Gnosticism.
The Christian who becomes involved with the human potential movement is a present-day Gnostic heretic.