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saints should be equally exciting. Our at-  it had exclusive significance for the people
        tendance is not optional but mandatory,   of Israel. In the New Testament, the em-
        “not forsaking the assembling of ourselves   phasis shifted from the seventh day of
        together” (Heb 10:25). While that is true,   the week to the first, as when “upon the
        never let it be a sense of duty that drives us   first day of the week … the disciples came
        to the meetings, but rather our allegiance   together to break bread” (Act 20:7).
        to  the  Lord  of  the  assembly  who  has   The Lord’s Day is never regarded as
        pledged His presence among those who   a carbon copy of the Sabbath, and yet
        gather to His name (Mat 18:20). There are   because “the sabbath was made for man”
        huge advantages in being together in His   (Mar  2:27),  there  are  advantages  in  at
        company, and in each other’s company,   least giving attention to some of the prin-
        and our spiritual lives will be severely   ciples connected with it. From a physical
        damaged if we are careless and uncom-  standpoint, the concept of rest must be
        mitted absentees.                     important. From a mental standpoint, a
        The Sabbath                           change of routine is advantageous. From
          Before introducing the seven feasts, the   a spiritual perspective, to be released from
        Lord revisits Israel’s Sabbath (Lev 23:3), a   normal duties allows freedom to devote
        weekly “holy convocation.” That seventh   the day to God’s interests.
        day, the day of rest, was patterned on the   The Overview
        record of creation when God “rested on   Providing  only minimal  Scriptural
        the seventh day from all his work which   support at this stage, the prophetic fore-
        he had made” (Gen 2:2). The introduction   shadowing connected with the feasts is
        of annual festivals was not to be a substi-  as follows:
        tute for observing the weekly Sabbath. It   • Passover: The Death of Christ
        seems that the Sabbath was in place even     (1Co 5:7)
        before the giving of the Law, for when   • Unleavened Bread: The Span of the
        the manna was first given, the sixth day
        of the week brought sufficient to cover     Believer’s Life (1Co 5:8)
        its non-appearance on the Sabbath (Exo   • Firstfruits: The Resurrection of Christ
        16:23). However, with the giving of the     (1Co 15:23)
        Ten Commandments the keeping of the     • Weeks: Descent of the Spirit and
        Sabbath became compulsory. Nine of the     Formation of the Church (Act 2:1)
        commandments are restated in the New    • Trumpets: Regathering of Israel
        Testament in one form or another, the one     (Mat 24:31)
        exception being “Remember the sabbath   • Atonement: Israel’s National
        day, to keep it holy” (Exo 20:8). The reason
        for its omission is that, in a unique way, it     Repentance (Zec 12:10-14)
        was part of God’s covenant relationship   • Tabernacles: The Millennium
        with the people of Israel. “Wherefore the     (Zec 14:16-21)
        children of Israel shall keep the sabbath,   It will be noted that one-day feasts point
        to observe the sabbath throughout their   to historical events, while the multi-day
        generations, for a perpetual covenant. It   feasts foreshadow periods of time. This
        is a sign between me and the children of   will be developed in more detail in suc-
        Israel for ever” (Exo 31:16-17). Therefore,   ceeding articles, God willing.

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