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Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Daily Sacrifice and the Sabbath

There are many feast days and holy days in the Catholic Calendar, but the Jews had special Holy Day and feast days as well. Jesus fulfilled many of these Jewish feasts in his own ministry.

Let's look at two special feasts that Jesus fulfilled: the Daily Sacrifice and the Sabbath.

Every day the Jews has two sacrifices called the Daily Sacrifice. The first sacrifice was called the Morning sacrifice and it took place at 9AM, while the second sacrifice was called the evening sacrifice and it took place at 3PM.
The sacrifice was the same for both the morning and evening sacrifice. What would happen is that a lamb would be sacrificed and that bread and wine would also be offered up. Numbers 28 tells us that this sacrifice is to be a continual offering, meaning forever.
During both of these sacrifices certain prayers would be said.

If you look to the gospels you can see how this is fulfilled in Jesus. In the Gospel of Mark Chapter 15 verse 25 it tells us that Jesus was crucified at 9 AM, this was at the same moment that the morning lamb was being slaughtered. Mark continues in Chapter 15 verse 34 and tells us that Jesus dies at 3 PM. This, of course, is the time of the evening sacrifice when the second lamb was being sacrificed.

Now, at Mass we are participating in the sacrifice of the Cross. Not that Jesus is dying anew, but that His sacrifice is being presented to the Father continuously throughout the world, fulfilling the Old Testament daily sacrifice.

Here are some of the prayers that were said during each of the sacrifices while Jesus was being crucified:

"Lord, you are almighty forever, who makes the dead alive... who supports those who fall, heals the sick, frees the captive, and keeps your word faithfully to those who sleep in the dust... Blessed are You, Lord, who makes the dead alive."

"Proclaim our liberation with the great trumpet, and raise a banner to gather together our dispersed, and assemble us from the four corners of the earth. Blessed are you, Lord, who gathers the banished of your people Israel."

"And to Jerusalem, your city, return with mercy and dwell in its midst as you have spoken; and build it soon in our days to be an everlasting building; and raise up quickly in its midst the throne of David. Blessed are you, Lord, who builds Jerusalem."


Now, let's see how Jesus fulfills the Sabbath.

As everyone probably knows the Sabbath, which is Saturday, is the day that God rested from creation.
It was on the Sabbath that the bread of the Presence, which was in the Temple, was to be eaten by the priests.
This bread was to be prepared on Friday and eaten on Saturday, or the Sabbath, but if Friday was a feast day then the bread was to be prepared on Thursday.
Jewish tradition tells us that the bread was anointed with oil in the shape of a T. The Sabbath was also a day of rest from servile work, though some Jews saw this as rest from absolutely all work.

Jesus fulfills the Sabbath in several ways.

First, as recorded in the gospel of Mark Chapter 2 verse 23, Jesus and his disciples are going through the fields on the Sabbath and plucking grain to eat. Well, this gets them in trouble with the Pharisees who accuse him of working on the Sabbath.
Jesus then reminds them about when David went and ate the bread of the presence even though he was not a priest.
Jesus is saying that "Me and my guys here are a new priesthood, so we are allowed to pluck grain on the Sabbath."
Jesus heals on the Sabbath - I think that this might be pointing to Jesus healing the old creation.
Also Jesus rests in the grave on the Sabbath.
Jesus also reveals his divinity concerning the Sabbath when he says:

John 5:16-18 16 "Therefore, the Jews began to persecute Jesus because he did this on a Sabbath. 17 But Jesus answered them, "My Father is at work until now, so I am at work." 18 For this reason the Jews tried all the more to kill him, because he not only broke the Sabbath but he also called God his own father, making himself equal to God."

Mark 2:27-28 27 "Then he said to them, "The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath. 28 That is why the Son of Man is lord even of the Sabbath."

(This information came from an awesome CD set by Dr. Brant Pitre - linked below - yes it is expensive, but it is worth every penny)
The Bible and the Mass: The Jewish Roots of Christian Liturgy
http://www.catholic-productions.com/store/audio/pitre/bibleandmass.html

7 comments:

Ed Winkle said...

So if someone tells me, Blessed Sabbath it should be on Saturday, not Sunday? The church has recognized Sunday as the Sabbath for centuries.

Good thought provoking article. I enjoyed it.

Paul Autenrieb said...

Dan,
I continually enjoy your insights into the holy scriptures.Thank you also for enlightening me to the work of Dr. Pitre.Keep up the great work and God bless you!
In Christ,
Paul Autenrieb

melanie said...

The church recognizes Sunday as "THE LORD'S DAY" because that is when He had shown himself to the disciples after resurrecting or when He actually resurrected (can't remember)but I had asked the question, "Why do we go to church on Sunday instead of Saturday?" All in all, the Sabbath was forever so we need to somehow get out of the current of the world and keep His Word and design if at all possible.

Former Roman Catholic said...

I would like to point out in the Catholic Church - the mass is all about offering up Christ as a sacrifice. This is a quote from NewAdvent.org (Catholic Encyclopedia) on the Eucharist –

"The name given to the Blessed Sacrament of the Altar in its twofold aspect of sacrament and Sacrifice of Mass, and in which Jesus Christ is truly present under the bread and wine."

Notice that Catholic Church is quite emphatic that the bread and wine are literal and not symbolic as Jesus presented at the last supper. The process is called Transubstantiation. You can read more about this in the Catholic Catechism.

Here are some quotes from Catholic publication "Dignity and Duties of the Priest" by Alphonsus Liguori whose writings are used by the Jesuit order of the priesthood and has been given the official Vatican seal signifying the official Papal endorsement of the writings. (Fisheaters.com)

…The entire Church cannot give to God as much honor, nor obtain so many graces, as a single priest by celebrating a single Mass; for the greatest honor that the whole Church without priests could give to God would consist in offering to Him in sacrifice the lives of all men. …

…Thus, by the celebration of a single Mass, in which he offers Jesus Christ in sacrifice, a priest gives greater honor to the Lord, than if all men by dying for God offered to Him the sacrifice of their lives. …

And then this last one.

…Jesus has died to institute the priesthood. It was not necessary for the Redeemer to die in order to save the world; a drop of His Blood, a single tear, or prayer, was sufficient to procure salvation for all; …

According to the Bible - the idea of Jesus being offered up as a sacrifice again and again is not Biblical.

According to the Bible – Christ died as an atonement so that all men who accepted His work of righteousness may be saved.

He did not die to institute the priesthood nor does He have to be offered up as a sacrifice at each and every mass. Paul made this crystal clear in the book of Hebrews. He died once for all.

According to Hebrews 7:27
27 Who needeth not daily, as those high priests, to offer up sacrifice, first for his own sins, and then for the people's: for this he did once, when he offered up himself.

As a former Roman Catholic, after having studied the Bible for many years I realized I had to make a choice. Follow the Bible or follow the teachings of Catholic Church. I made my choice. Like Joshua I will follow the Lord. I have a lot of family who is dear to me in the Church and many friends who sincerely love the Lord in the Church. But in the end we must put everything to the test of scripture and make a choice whom we will serve.

Consider carefully what I have shared. And do not take my word for it – look up the sources I have given and prove to yourself and then make your own decision.

Joe

Former Roman Catholic said...

Regarding the Seventh-Day Sabbath versus Sunday - I would urge all of you to go to this link in the Catholic Catechism on the Vatican website. It is a link that compares the 10 Commandments of the Bible to what the Roman Catholic formula.

(http://www.vatican.va/archive/ccc_css/archive/catechism/command.htm)

This is from the Vatican – not hearsay.

The first commandment from the Bible states: Exodus 20:2-3 (KJV) 2 I am the Lord thy God, which have brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. 3 Thou shalt have no other gods before me.

According to the Catholic Catechism – the first commandment is: "I am the LORD your God:
you shall not have strange Gods before me."

What changes were made?

First – no reference to God bringing them out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage.
Second – the statement "no other gods' is changed to 'no strange gods'.

Implications – by changing 'no other' to 'no strange' – God says 'no other' that is it; by saying 'no strange' man can define what a strange god is.

The second commandment dealing with among many things gives God's definition of idolatry – is completely removed.

By doing this what did the Church change?

It removes God's definition of idolatry
It removes God's passion for His people (i.e.: jealousy)
It removes God's prediction of what will happen to the children whose parents do not follow the Lord (i.e.: we become what we behold)
It removes the corner stone of God's character – mercy
It removes the purpose for keeping God's law – Jesus said: If you love me, keep my commandments.

Notice carefully in this commandment that God gives two conditions for idolatry:
(1) do not make an image AND
(2) do not bowing down or serving it

The Catholic Catechism article #2129 – they correctly state that making an image in and of itself is not idolatry.

In article #2130 it continues correctly – "Nevertheless, already in the Old Testament, God ordained or permitted the making of images that pointed symbolically toward salvation by the incarnate Word: so it was with the bronze serpent, the ark of the covenant, and the cherubim"

As correctly pointed out making an image in and of itself is not idolatry.
BUT according to God when combined with bowing down or serving it – that is when it becomes idolatry.

As for the Sabbath – which the Church claims is Sunday for Christians:

Ask yourselves three questions:
(1) Do you believe the Bible is the inspired word of God?

If yes, then…

(2) Do you believe all things of faith must be supported by the Bible?

If yes, then…

(3) Show me from scripture where it is that God said the day changed from Saturday to Sunday?

If you answered NO to any of the first two questions – then no matter what the Bible says; and not being rude but correct – you have simply created your own religion.

As for there being any scripture where God says the day changed, there is none. I looked for years. And if you ask a Catholic priest who has human integrity – he will tell you there is no command from scripture to keep Sunday holy. It is the tradition of the Church and we all know that Christ condemned the Jews for setting aside the commandments of God for the sake of their traditions.

When God gave the 10 Commandments, He first spoke them and then wrote them with His own fingers. At Mt Sinai they were written in stone. In the New Testament God the law is written on our hearts (Hebrews 8:10).

When Jesus was tempted by Satan, Christ gave us the example by saying "It is written".


Research for yourself all that I have presented
Then ask yourself - What is wrong with the Ten Commandments staying exactly the way God gave them?
And then make your choice of whom you will serve.

Acts 4:19 (KJV) 19 But Peter and John answered and said unto them, Whether it be right in the sight of God to hearken unto you more than unto God, judge ye.

Daniel Egan said...

Former Roman Catholic

Do you mind emailing me your email address. Mine is:

Catholic4areason@gmail.com

Scott in Texas said...

You need to do more due diligence about the true meaning of the idioms you reference and their meaning to first century Jews. "Fulfill" meant to understand and live its meaning to the fullest, not an obligation that is now done and may be ignored. "Abolish" meant to make it meaningless or to lack understanding, not to just end or remove.

Yeshua is our rest or Sabbath, but this did not abrogate the 4th commandment (read, rule for living). He also did not abrogate the other ten commandments. It always puzzles me how so many Believers still revere and believe we are called to still uphold the other ten commandments, but so easily ignore the 4th. One verse indicating the apostles met and ate together does not justify changing the day of worship from Saturday to Sunday. At the same time, it is really the spirit and purpose of the Sabbath that Yeshua intended for us as a literal day of rest and to use that time to worship Him. We see now people work all seven days, and there is no real rest. These commands are for our benefit not just rules bc God likes making them. This whole Sunday worship came about during a period of antisemitism of the early Catholic church. It is time we ignored the traditions of men, read the plain words of the Bible and returned to Biblical, God-ordained worship and rest on the seventh day (Saturday) and honored the Moedim or appointed times of God and did away with the pagan honoring celebrations on December 25th and the day known as Easter.