â€” Christ did not abolish the commandments
In Romans 10:4, Paul discusses how the Jews try to establish their own righteousness by observing the law rather than submitting to Godâ€™s righteousness. The passage teaches us that a person is justified by believing in Christ, not by keeping the law. Yet Paul is not saying that Christ did away with the law or Godâ€™s commandments. Christ Himself stated that He did not come to abolish the law but to fulfill it (Mt 5:17-20).
The Sabbath is mentioned at least 64 times in the New Testament, and in every instance it refers to the seventh day, with no intimation that it had ceased to be of binding obligation. Jesus Christ sacredly observed the seventh day and taught His followers to do the same:
So He came to Nazareth, where He had been brought up. And as His custom was, He went into the synagogue on the Sabbath day, and stood up to read. (Lk 4:16)
Then He went down to Capernaum, a city of Galilee, and was teaching them on the Sabbaths. (Lk 4:30-31)
As this was His â€œcustom,â€ it follows that the Sabbath day found Jesus habitually in the synagogue, engaged in divine worship. He ever upheld the Sabbath and the Sabbath law. Concerning the law of God, of which the Sabbath commandment is a part, He said:
For assuredly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle will by no means pass from the law, till all is fulfilled. (Mt 5:18)
The Lord Jesus Christ is our perfect role model. He leaves us examples so that we can follow in His steps (1 Pet 2:21). â€” We keep the Sabbath under grace, not under the law.
We do not keep the Sabbath in order to earn our own righteousness. We do it as Godâ€™s children, out of obedience to Godâ€™s commandments, under the grace of Jesus Christ.
Remember, it is where your heart is that determines whether or not you are keeping the Sabbath under grace or under the law. For example, if you have to work on the Sabbath and cannot go to church, the Lord knows your heart and your desire to be in His temple. If you do not have to work, but instead choose to go fishing, here too, He knows your heart. We shall be given our just reward according to our heartsâ€™ desires.