A booklet called Feast Days and Sabbaths-Are They Still Binding? published by Amazing Facts was sent to us for our review and comments. The following is the result of that review. The booklet will henceforth be referred to by the first part of its title, Feast Days and Sabbaths.
The writer’s central assumption is that the law of Yahweh or Ten Commandments is different from and longer lasting than the law of Moses. He claims “Moses’ law” included the Feast days and was only temporary and ceremonial – done away at the death of our Savior – while “Yahweh’s law” is the Ten Commandments, which still stand today.
‘Law of Moses’ Applies to All the Law
The simple fact is, references to the “law of Moses” and the Ten Commandments are interchangeable in Scripture. Moses was merely the messenger of Yahweh’s law and the appellation “Moses’ Law” became attached to him as a result. If a friend allows me to drive his car for a while people would refer to it as my car by simple association. Moses handled all the law as emissary of Yahweh to Israel, including the Ten Commandments, Exodus 32:15. In that respect you could call the Ten Commandments Moses’ law, too, as does the Bible.
Moses was the go-between for Yahweh and Israel, as we see in Exodus 19:3, 7-8. This is also clear in 1Kings 8:56, 58: “Blessed be Yahweh, that has given rest unto his people Israel, according to all that he promised: there has not failed one word of all his good promise, which he promised by the hand of Moses his servant.” Additional Scriptures are similar in scope and some include the commandments as well as the statutes and judgments as laws being transmitted by Moses:
∙Leviticus 26:46: “These are the statutes and judgments and laws, which Yahweh made between him and the children of Israel in mount Sinai by the hand of Moses.”
∙Numbers 36:13: “These are the commandments and the judgments, which Yahweh commanded by the hand of Moses unto the children of Israel in the plains of Moab by Jordan near Jericho.”
∙Judges 3:4: “And they were to prove Israel by them (nations), to know whether they would hearken unto the commandments of Yahweh, which he commanded their fathers by the hand of Moses.”
∙1Kings 2:3: “And keep the charge of Yahweh your Elohim, to walk in his ways, to keep his statutes, and his commandments, andhis judgments, and his testimonies, as it is written in the law of Moses, that you may prosper in all that you do, and whithersoever you turn yourself.”
∙2Chronicles 35:6: “So kill the passover, and sanctify yourselves, and prepare your brethren, that they may do according to the word of Yahweh by the hand of Moses.”
∙Nehemiah 9:13-14: “You came down also upon mount Sinai, and spake with them from heaven, and gave them right judgments, and true laws, good statutes and commandments. And made known unto them your holy sabbath, and commanded them precepts, statutes, and laws, by the hand of Moses your servant.” (Here we note that Moses made known the Fourth Commandment Sabbath day as well as the other laws. The booklet would have us believe that only Yahweh disseminated the Sabbath law, with no contact involving Moses.
Feasts and Ten Commandments Both Part of Yahweh’s Law
The Ten Commandments are listed in Deuteronomy chapter 5. They are called statutes and judgments in Deuteronomy 5:1. Notice who presented these Ten Commandments, statutes and judgments to the people: “These be the words which Moses spake unto all Israel on this side Jordan in the wilderness, in the plain over against the Red sea, between Paran, and Tophel, and Laban, and Hazeroth, and Dizahab” (1:1).
Yahweh does not separate the Ten Commandments from the Feasts, as if He mandated the commandments while Moses was responsible for the Feasts. Yahweh is the lawgiver, not Moses. James 1:12 tells us clearly that there is only one Lawgiver.Isaiah 33:22 says Yahweh is that Lawgiver. Moses was merely the conduit.
The weekly Sabbath and annual Feasts are all combined in Leviticus 23, showing that the Sabbath is considered a Feast and that all are part of Yahweh’s commanded law. The first five verses read, “And Yahweh spake unto Moses, saying, Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, Concerning the feasts of Yahweh, which you shall proclaim to be holy convocations, even these are my feasts. Six days shall work be done: but the seventh day is the sabbath of rest, an holy convocation; you shall do no work therein: it is the sabbath of Yahweh in all your dwellings. These are the feasts of Yahweh, even holy convocations, which you shall proclaim in their seasons. In the fourteenth day of the first month at even is Yahweh’s passover…”
The writer of Feast Days and Sabbaths rests his argument on a couple of passages, one of which is 2Kings 21:8, claiming that because Yahweh mentions both His law and Moses’ law that there is a distinction between the two. In fact, it is ALL Yahweh’s law. Yahweh spoke it to Moses and Moses gave it to the people because the people feared dying if they faced Yahweh directly,Exodus 20:19. Rather than making a separation between two kinds of law in 2Kings 21:8, Yahweh refers to both His law and Moses’ law in the same breath in order to show their equivalence. They are the same law, as other verses show.
The writer makes this statement: “It is interesting to note that curses and judgments of this law spelled out penalties for transgression which were totally missing from the Ten Commandments,” p. 6. After the commandments are re-listed in the second giving found in Deuteronomy 5, we find the following in Deuteronomy 11:26-28: “Behold, I set before you this day a blessing and a curse; a blessing, if you obey the commandments of Yahweh your Elohim, which I command you this day: And a curse, if you will not obey the commandments of Yahweh your Elohim, but turn aside out of the way which I command you this day, to go after other gods, which you have not known.” The curses for breaking the commandments as well as the statutes and judgments are detailed inDeuteronomy 28:15-68.
Commandments, statutes and judgments constitute what is known as the law, as shown in Deuteronomy 5:1 and 6:1. We are commanded in Deuteronomy 11:1 to “keep his charge, and his statutes, and his judgments, and his commandments, always.” And the Feasts are called “feasts of Yahweh,” Leviticus 23:44.
‘Law of Moses’ A Command of Yahweh
The Scriptures talk of Moses’ law because he handed them down from Yahweh; in fact, the law originated with Yahweh and was mandated by Him for His people.
We read in 1Kings 2:3: “And keep the charge of Yahweh your Elohim, to walk in His ways, to keep His statutes, and Hiscommandments, and His judgments, and His testimonies, as it is written in the law of Moses…” The “law of Moses” included the Ten Commandments.
Further in 2Kings 14:6 we find: “But the children of the murderers he slew not: according unto that which is written in the law of Moses, wherein Yahweh commanded…”
Ezra 7:6 says: “This Ezra went up from Babylon; and he was a ready scribe in the law of Moses, which Yahweh Elohim of Israel had given.”
Nehemiah 8:1 tells us: “And all the people gathered themselves together as one man into the street that was before the water gate; and they spake unto Ezra the scribe to bring Feast Days and Sabbaths of the law of Moses, which Yahweh had commanded to Israel.”
In Acts 21:24 Paul proved he was a keeper of all the law, not just the Ten Commandments, when he followed James’s instructions to “take and purify yourself with them…that they may know…that you yourself also walk orderly, and keep the law.”
Feasts and Sacrifices Not One and the Same
Feast Days and Sabbaths makes a common, erroneous assumption that the Feasts rise and fall with ceremonial, animal sacrifices. According to this logic, if animal sacrifices have been put in abeyance in the New Covenant, so have the Feasts. If that were true then the Sabbath is also now done away because animal sacrifices were a key part of the weekly Sabbath observance as well, being double the normal daily sacrifices on the Sabbath, Numbers 28:9-10.
Contrary to popular view, the sacrificial shedding of blood has not been abrogated in the New Covenant. The shedding of Yahshua’s perfect, sacrificial blood is still what we rely on now for the remission of our sins, Hebrews 10:9-10. Therefore, the idea of sacrifice was never brought to an end in the New Testament. Neither is circumcision, which is now of the heart, Romans 2:29.
The only change in the law under the New Covenant occurred with a new priesthood (Yahshua) and a different sacrificial system (His own death), Hebrews 9:9-15. The Passover, one of the seven appointed times, is still commanded by direct command of Yahshua Himself in memorial of His death, Luke 22:19. Churchianity even admits to that fact by keeping an imitation of the Passover it calls holy communion.
The Truth About Colossians 2 and Ephesians 2
Feast Days and Sabbaths lumps together sacrifices, human priesthood and feast days all as part of the law that was only a type and shadow and was in fact “against us,” citing Colossians 2:14. Colossians 2:14 specifically says it was the handwriting of ordinances that was against us. “Ordinances” is from the Greek dogma and refers to man-made rules and decrees. The same word is used in Caesar’s tax decree (dogma) of Luke 2:1. It means a man-made rule. The author himself agrees, where on page 15 he says that ordinances is a term “applied to local legal codes which are very narrow and limited.”
Colossians itself in 2:21-22 defines what it means by this “handwriting of ordinances”: “(Touch not; taste not; handle not; Which all are to perish with the using;) after the commandments and doctrines of men.” The Jews of the day added a lot of ritual that served to separate themselves from the Gentile. By His death, Yahshua brought Jew and Gentile together and in doing so He obliterated these man-made dogmas meant to keep them apart.
The booklet also cites verse 16 of Colossians 2, “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: Which are a shadow of things to come; but the body is of Messiah.” This passage is often used to say one may keep any observances one likes and no one should judge one for it. In fact, it says that Yahweh’s Feasts ARE a shadow of something to come (not WERE shadowy Sabbaths, as the author erroneously argues on page 17, as if they were done away) and that only the body is to judge as to how they should be observed, not an outsider (“is” has been added by translators).
Ephesians 2:15 is also cited in the book. It reads: “Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances; for to make in himself of twain one new man, so making peace.” Verse 14 explains that He broke down the separating wall and made peace between Jew and Gentile and made salvation possible by “one new man,” meaning Himself.
Neither of these passages has anything to do with Yahweh’s Feasts, which is what they are called in Leviticus 23:2, not man’s Feasts or man-made Feasts.
Sabbaths Refers to Feast Days, Which Have High Days
An attempt is made to say that “Sabbaths” in Leviticus 23:38 is distinct from the Feasts in verse 37. Does this mean the weekly Sabbath is a different class of law from the Feasts? As pointed out in the Companion Bible, “Sabbaths” in verse 38 is a reference to the sacrifices offered on the Sabbaths through a linguistic device known as metonymy. This is clearly the case because both the previous verse and the rest of verse 38 discuss meat and burnt offerings, drink offerings, gifts, vows and freewill offerings. To insert weekly Sabbath in a list of offerings would violate the context and not make any sense.
In a contradiction to many of his own attempts to make “Sabbaths” refer only to the weekly Sabbath, the author admits on page 16, “Were there ‘sabbaths’ other than the weekly Sabbaths? Yes, there were yearly Sabbaths…”
Ezekiel 20:24-25 is cited as meaning that Yahweh gave Israel the law of Moses that was not good. This interpretation is unbelievable. Why would Yahweh ever give man laws that aren’t good, and statutes that they were not to live by? Reading further in verse 26 we find the right understanding. This is actually speaking of Israel’s keeping pagan rituals, like burning their children to Moloch. And because of their rebellion Yahweh gave them over to these pagan observances that were not good. Bullinger’s Companion Bible explains that the words “I gave them also statutes” is a Hebrew idiom that means “I suffered others to give them statutes…the verb nathan, to give, is therefore rendered to suffer in this sense.”
Commanded, Not Taken Away
Feast Days and Sabbaths ends its case against the Feasts by saying that Yahshua went up to Jerusalem in John 5:51 to keep a feast. It then says, “This is unquestionably one of the holy days that Paul spoke of as being abolished.” The question that immediately comes to mind is, why would our Savior implore us to follow in His footsteps and do what He did, which included keeping the annual Feasts (John 7:10, 14; 2:23, Mark 14:12) and then abolish those same Feasts as soon as He died? His command to keep the Passover in Luke 22:19 is unmistakable. How can we possibly follow this command if the Passover were done away at His death? Why do churches today still honor “Pentecost Sunday” if the Feasts are no longer in effect?
Why would Paul, whose ministry took place years after the death and resurrection of Yahshua, say, “I must by all means keep this Feast [Tabernacles] that comes to Jerusalem?” (Acts 18:21). Paul was obedient to Yahshua’s [and Yahweh’s] command by keeping the Passover in 1Corinthians 11:24-31, as well as other Feasts (Acts 20:6, 16; 27:9-even 30 years after the Savior’ resurrection). Paul said he was taught by the resurrected Savior Himself, Galatians 1:11-17. That being the case, why was he not told that the Feast days are no longer in effect? He said he declared all the counsel or teachings of Yahweh, Acts 20:27. Then why were the Feasts still part of his teachings if they were abolished by Yahshua’s death long before?
The fact is, not only were the Feast days not done away in the New Covenant, but also they will be kept in the coming millennial Kingdom. Read the revealing prophecies of future Feast observances in Zechariah 14:16-19; Isaiah 66:23; Ezekiel 44:24; 45:21-25;46:3. The people of Yahweh as well as the whole earth will be observing all these days when Yahshua’s government is set up for a thousand years in Jerusalem. The question is, if they will be part of His government under His millennial reign, why would they be abolished for the True Worshiper today?
Elder Mansanger, you truly have tact
How could anyone believe that the created was superior to the Creator, seems obvious to me, this thought is probably offensive yet it would be my answer 🙂
Let’s pray for the feast im famished! There’s definitely “Power” in prayer …. let all say come Lord yashua ha mashiac.. Prince Michael.. . and the spirit say come .. and the bride say come… not our will but his will be done amen x
A friend of mine once said do no say that is common sense because ‘sense’ is not common among all people; how can one read The Bible from beginning to end and come to these conclusions? The Holy Spirit has to lead and guide into Truth. Messiyah Yahshua states even a fool would not err, ……. ?
To be a leader one must learn to follow: the Word not the ‘herd’