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Buying groceries on sabbath


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I don't have an issue with Adventists working in the kitchens at our hospitals, schools and campmeetings on Sabbath. I don't think it matters if people pay cash or with a ticket. Working in a kitchen in such a setting is doing a good work on the Sabbath. I would have more of an issue with it if we were employing non-Adventists to feed us on our Sabbath so that we didn't have to work.

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I hope by now that we have gotten over this infantile idea that if we need to purchase something on the Sabbath it is somehow "sanctified" if we purchase a 'coupon' on Friday or put the money in a 'tithe envelope' and present it instead of 'money'.... I have members of my family who wouldn't enter a State Park on the Sabbath because there is a $5 fee to enter. They may be devout Seventh-day Adventists but IMO a bit misguided. Nuff Sed

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I think that important and overlooked idea is that Sabbath was made for people, and not the other way around. It was not made for God. It was not made so people observe it as a law of nature, like gravity, which is rather "robotic" and "automated". It was made as a principle, which literally denotes physical and mental rest.

Much of the past and modern holidays denote rigidity to the point that they are made into a financial cash cows by the businesses that exist solely for those holidays. On Halloween you are supposed to buy candy. Saint Patricks - alcohol. On valentines day you supposed to buy chocolates and flowers. On a birthday you must buy a cake with candles. On Christmas you buy presents for everyone. On thanksgiving you shop for food, like turkey and tofurkey.

The point is that all of these started as some sort of commemoration of something, and quickly turned rather rigid to the point that the original commemoration has almost nothing to do with present one. Some of them we actually dread and threatened by the consequences of not following through with tradition. The culture conditions us to expect something and punishing other people for not following what they supposed to follow during these special days.

Let me quickly present two different perspectives as an example to make a point a bit clear. From perspective of a child, Halloween is awesome. They love it and look forward to it every year. It's exciting for them because they get to show off and hang out with their friends, and score some candy while they are at it, or egg someone's house. They are not really that concerned with tradition or meaning. They love the event itself, and they are excited about it.

The adults, like I, dread the Halloween. It's a time where my house is held hostage by a bunch of kids for the ransom of candy. If I don't provide the sufficient amount, it could mean a lot of work of clearing up wet toilet paper from my trees, or eggs from my siding.

The point is that we can both love and hate the event for the reasons that are completely irrelevant to the original history. We associate it with something absolutely outside of the box of why it's there in the first place.

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The Sabbath is really not that much different. We first learn about it in the Bible as it's given to Jews as a commemoration of something. It obviously has a connection with original creation week in language, yet the law itself was not mentioned as a idea that was observed prior to Sinai. It certainly does not mean that it was not there.

The point is that most of the OT is a history of Israel, and that's what the OT revolves around. It has a narrow focus that primarily deals with Israel, it's enemies and it's captors, and its God.

The Sabbath law in OT Israel is very rigid. If you disobey, you are put to death. Literally, if you don't like it and willingly disobey, you better off not being a Jew to begin with. I mean, it was some serious stuff. Imagine how you'd behave on Sabbath if you knew that you could be killed for breaking it. It's pretty brutal.

But, before we go any further. I'd like to make a the following observations:

1) 10 and other commandments and ordinances were the law of the land. In terms of the USA, 10 commandments were the Constitution, and other commandments were other legal codes. If one was to live as a Jew, one had to follow these and agree to the consequences of breaking these.

2) One could leave the Israel in order to avoid following the law and death that would result from breaking it.

3) Overall, Israel was an archetype example for the entire world, existing at that time and the future one. It was a visible example that demonstrated invisible principles. It was God's way of telling a parable to us, just like Christ was telling parables to Jews. If you begin to interpret it literally, there may be some issues that we run into today.

Just like Jews of the past, we've made other sets of traditions around Sabbath, which in turn becomes our idea of the Sabbath. It becomes a fake substitute for something that's more real, rather a visible reminder of the reality that we can't perceive.

Those principles only point to the original to fix our perspective. They are not there for putting people in "spiritual jail" where they serve time to "get better".

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A final example to make it clear, although some of you still don't get it, and won't get it at all.

I don't have to walk over to my wife and ask her

- Is it ok if I look at this picture of a naked woman?

- Is it ok if I spend the night at the bar tonight?

- Is it ok if I eat in bed. (personal example :)

If I have to ask her these questions to find out if these things are ok with her, it's like I did not really know her at all. She's a stranger to me if I have to ask her these questions. I don't have to run to her mom, brother or dad to find it out. I don't have to poll people online if it's ok with her :). I find out through careful understanding of her uniqueness and what she's all about.

On the other hand, I can ask her:

- Is it ok if we celebrate your birthday tomorrow, I'm very sick and tired today and I really want to enjoy that occasion with you?

- Is it ok if we watch a basketball game today instead of a romantic comedy?

And, most of the time, she would not be upset with me for asking these... if I don't abuse the privilege. Most of the times we paint God as this demanding wife that says "Choose... me or Monday night Football". That's not love and understanding. That's a rather selfish attitude, that I believe God is void of.

If we trying to reach loving state from perspective of "dos" and "don'ts", it simply unreachable. It just turns into a meaningless observances, which are really a substitute for something real that was lost on people a long time ago.

Coming back to the answer as to whether it's ok to buy groceries on Sabbath. If you truly know and love God, then you'll know when it's ok, and when it's not.

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The Sabbath is really not that much different. We first learn about it in the Bible as it's given to Jews as a commemoration of something. It obviously has a connection with original creation week in language, yet the law itself was not mentioned as a idea that was observed prior to Sinai.

The Sabbath was given to mankind in the Garden of Eden before man ever sinned. God made the Sabbath for man the day after He made man.

We find the story of the Sabbath in relation to gathering manna in Exodus chapter 16. God did not give the Commandments to Israel until chapter 20. The Sabbath was obviously something that was known and practiced prior to the children of Israel leaving Egypt and God giving them the Ten Commandments.

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Anyway.

God's having a party this Saturday. Starts in the morning, but you have to take a train to get there--no other way to arrive: it's up a mountain, over a desert, through the hills, past the ice berg. There's only one train and it leaves Friday at the exact moment the sun goes down. (In case you were wondering, God's driving.) The return trip is a lot faster than the drive there (i.e., "Beam me up, Scotty"). Because it's gonna be a long party, you should probably plan on catching some zzz's during the trip. (Don't worry, God's a good driver, you won't hear the engine roaring.) The party is BYOB, a plus one invite (but you could invite more if you want--God would be thrilled!), complimentary breakfast, brown bag lunch, potluck dinner--so get your stuff together before you come!

If you're late, that's okay. God'll still let you into the party. But you'll have to take the B-train. (B is for bumpy.) You probably won't get much sleep and you'll likely be groggy in the morning--if you make it there by morning (sometimes that B-train is running late too). Also, no complimentary continental breakfast on the B-train--just day-old bread because the kitchen cook forgot to stock up.

If you choose not to come, well, that's up to you. But, you're gonna miss a great party!

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The Sabbath was given to mankind in the Garden of Eden before man ever sinned. God made the Sabbath for man the day after He made man.

We find the story of the Sabbath in relation to gathering manna in Exodus chapter 16. God did not give the Commandments to Israel until chapter 20. The Sabbath was obviously something that was known and practiced prior to the children of Israel leaving Egypt and God giving them the Ten Commandments.

Yes, you are correct that we do find the principle Sabbath idea prior to Sinai. In the context, my point is that it was not a law. There would not be any manna falling on the 7th day. There were no other specifics given besides that.

My overall point was that it was the law of the land. It was enforced on you through death penalty. And that was not the point of Sabbath, to keep it, because it was a law.

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Interesting points fccool, I agree with some and some I don't. As far as God stoning the Israelite's for not observing the Sabbath, I believe John's post covers that very well. I think we will not have answers until Jesus comes again and we can ask why this or that, etc., at least the happenings of the OT. I think the NT speaks for itself. I also think Shane makes very good points.

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Anyway.

God's having a party this Saturday. Starts in the morning, but you have to take a train to get there--no other way to arrive: it's up a mountain, over a desert, through the hills, past the ice berg. There's only one train and it leaves Friday at the exact moment the sun goes down. (In case you were wondering, God's driving.) The return trip is a lot faster than the drive there (i.e., "Beam me up, Scotty"). Because it's gonna be a long party, you should probably plan on catching some zzz's during the trip. (Don't worry, God's a good driver, you won't hear the engine roaring.) The party is BYOB, a plus one invite (but you could invite more if you want--God would be thrilled!), complimentary breakfast, brown bag lunch, potluck dinner--so get your stuff together before you come!

If you're late, that's okay. God'll still let you into the party. But you'll have to take the B-train. (B is for bumpy.) You probably won't get much sleep and you'll likely be groggy in the morning--if you make it there by morning (sometimes that B-train is running late too). Also, no complimentary continental breakfast on the B-train--just day-old bread because the kitchen cook forgot to stock up.

If you choose not to come, well, that's up to you. But, you're gonna miss a great party!

Great illustration! :)

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The 3rd angels message is the Sabbath. The death penalty still applies, only the sentence has been postponed.

Just stating the obvious,,,

So, anyone who ever broke the Sabbath would be penalized with death?

That was the case with Israel law.

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I am really enjoying this discussion! Thanks to all :)

My hubby likes to buy us lunch or coffee through the drive-thru on Sabbath after church on the way somewhere else. While it's not my best plan, I don't nag at him about it.

But here's a neat thing- sometimes I forego him getting me anything, because it's Sabbath. When I do, God does provide. I have gone through until we get home without eating (that's my fast, I guess) and I don't get woozy. But sometimes if I am famished I will let Russ pick something up to tie me over. Sometimes it's a faith thing and sometimes it becomes a mercy situation.

I like how the mercy aspect has come out here... that if someone we know is in need that we will offer to be God's hands to that person. I tend to take from my own cupboard but if there is nothing suitable and especially if the person is ill I will purchase what is needed. Such is not a shopping for shelf-stocking or pleasure but for needs that arise.

But I am not an authority on that. It is just how we handle it. There is always a blessing to trusting God. He's put the blessing in the day for man's sake.

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The fundamental question is what is the penalty for sin? Not just for the Sabbath but for all 'known' sin, it is death. But there IS another solution, the sacrafice of Jesus on our behalf.

God knows our hearts, justice is mixed with mercy, if we call on Him, truly, from the heart, His mercy is sufficient to avoid the only other known remedy for sin, eternal death.

We do have a part to play in this plan of salvation and we can't ignore it. Nor can we ignore our weakness to keep the law. Our only hope is to accept Him, and while doing so, seek to become more like Him in every way (santification).

But back to the specific question, Sabbath. How do we keep it? Of course that varies with circumstances and people. There is no concrete black or white answer for all of us. It is the 3rd angels message, it IS the message for the end time, it WILL be the final test. So, it's an important question to be answered between yourself and the Lord.

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.... Sabbath. How do we keep it? Of course that varies with circumstances and people. There is no concrete black or white answer for all of us. It is the 3rd angels message, it IS the message for the end time, it WILL be the final test. So, it's an important question to be answered between yourself and the Lord.

I'm wondering: if we aren't keeping the Sabbath and all His commandments NOW, won't it be easier when we're faced with hard choices to feel that obeying God's law isn't ALL that important? We won't suddenly change, will we?

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The 3rd angels message is the Sabbath. The death penalty still applies, only the sentence has been postponed.

Just stating the obvious,,,

Be happy or I'll kill you would make about as much sense as killing someone for not resting.

I guess you'll "rest in peace" either way....LOL!!!

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Your characterizations show a poor understanding of God's purposes for instituting Sabbath and worship.

It reminds me an adult complaining that his mommy and daddy would threaten him with punishment if he didn't clean his room and therefore he was still refusing to clean his rooms.

Do you believe it's important that humans worship and obey the Creator of the universe?

Do you believe that assuming that such a God exists, He has a right to command worship and obedience?

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It reminds me an adult complaining that his mommy and daddy would threaten him with punishment if he didn't clean his room and therefore he was still refusing to clean his rooms.

John, adults don't complain about mommy making them clean their room. Yet, even child analogy is a poor one in this case. If you honestly believe in free will, then the idea of doing something under a threat of punishment is not a free will choice.

It's like me pulling a gun to your head and saying, you have a choice... give me your wallet, or be punished. Won't you complain? If we have a free will, then obedience is ours to give. It does not belong to God. If it did, he would not ask for it.

Therefore, we as adults have a choice, even if we choose knowing a possibility of certain consequences.

For CardW, given the explanations that you give, the choice is pretty clear. You paint God as a tyrant who only emphasizes the importance of obedience and respect, under a threat of punishment. If that's all there was to God, then it's no different than living in prison, where everything is enforced under a threat of punishment.

Yet, the idea of freedom of both thought and choice does not necessitate that everyone in this world obey God because it's "important to".

There are really only two laws for humanity. Love your neighbor as yourself, and Love God. You can't know one without another. You can't approach these by isolating one "obedience point", and then claim that people don't love God or don't love their neighbor because they don't fully understand or follow that one particular point.

CardW may not follow every point that Bible commands, but he may have more love in his pinky that I in my entire being. Did that possibility ever occur to you?

Also, does the following possibility occur to you?

"CardW, when I was hungry, you fed me. When I was helpless, you took care of me. When I was thirsty, you gave me food. You did not fully understand my law to keep it literally, but you understood what it was about. Well done.

____, you know and understand the Bible and Adventist theology better than anyone else, but when I was hungry you passed by. When I needed help, you only scolded me for not doing things the same way as you do. You claim to follow me, but you don't understand what I'm about. I never really knew you."

Did this ever occur to you as a possibility?

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Love God AND love man.

If you love God you will be like Him, willingly, striving to be more like Him daily. The choices you make will be based on love, not fear of condemnation. Like Daniel said, "Oh how I love thy law." If you are aware of, convicted of, understand the importance of any given law of God and chose to disobey, you are choosing not to love God.

What then shall be done with those who will not be happy with an eternal life of worship and love to God? What alternative would be reasonable?

Or perhaps the idea is that to love man is enough, therefore God will work some miracle in your life and you will instantly find a deep love for God as a result? In spite of ignoring His commandments while on earth? That theology has been around a long time, it started in the Garden. "Thou shalt not surely die." Just be a good person and it will all work out, yet another lie.

It's a knowing rejection with clear understanding on the matter that leads to rejection of God and His love and the ultimate solution to that troubling problem. In which God takes no delight, but what are the alternatives? Has anyone got a better plan than the creator of the Universe?

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If you are aware of, convicted of, understand the importance of any given law of God and chose to disobey, you are choosing not to love God.

The issue is that a lot of people neither understand, nor convinced. Mostly because they are taught to love by doing things... not the other way around.

Love comes through understanding and empathy. First understanding yourself, and then understanding other. Understanding is the true knowledge, which leads to true love, which results in its expression.

One can't love without understanding. And by the comments that are posted here, it's fairly clear that obedience is being emphasized above understanding.

You don't have to understand why cleaning your room is important... just obey and clean, and don't complain. That's love ... :(

I say, don't make someone do something without first understanding it. It lacks meaning.

Most of the things that viewed by us as "evil", is merely lack of understanding on our part. Lack of understanding the full-weight of the circumstances. The more I put myself in other people's shoes, the more I understand that perhaps I would do exactly the same things that they do, given the history. That's why it's easier for me to forgive.

If God understands everything, then He likewise forgives everything. And he will not force things on you just because these are "good for you". The choice is yours. And the choice is likewise for people around you.

Shaming people into doing something is not a way to go. They have to first understand. True love does not hang on certain law or dogma. True love hangs on understanding and expression of that understanding to meet the needs of other.

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Initially I turned to God because I was convicted that my life was not in harmony with the law, that death would be the result. "Fear" being the beginning of wisdom. What then could I do to avoid the ultimate penalty?

In time, and I'm still working on it, the "fear", the condemnation is being replaced by a greater understanding of His character, His law. It's a good law, I have decided THIS is the way to live, I willingly accept it, by the grace and love of God.

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