by Ozzie Grant
The same can also apply to us. The same lie we also have believed about God’s character can make us the children of the devil. Therefore, we need “the truth’ from Jesus so that we can be set free from this evil belief.
Those “believers” responded to Jesus:
33 They answered Him, ‘We are Abraham’s descendants, and have never been in bondage to anyone. How can you say, ‘You will be made free’?
These believers in Jesus claimed, from the Old Testament, to be “Abraham’s descendants, and to have never been in bondage to anyone”. First of all, this was not true at all. Did they forget Egypt? Babylon? Rome? But Jesus was speaking of another bondage, one that was much more enslaving and damaging. Jesus wanted these outward believers in Him to realize that they were in the ultimate bondage to none other than the devil himself. By believing “the lie” from the devil they could not have been in any greater bondage. Jesus eventually does tell these false believers in Him who their real father really is, Satan, the one who holds them in slavery. Unless we become Jesus’ “disciples indeed,” we also are false believers in Jesus and we have the devil as our father.
Is it possible that these same self-styled believers in Jesus were present at Pilate’s interrogation? Could it be that they were a part of that multitude that chose Barabbas instead of Jesus?
15 Now at the feast the governor was accustomed to releasing to the multitude one prisoner whom they wished. 16 And at that time they had a notorious prisoner called Barabbas. [ACCORDING TO THE FOOTNOTE HIS NAME WAS JESUS BARABBAS, WHICH MEANS JESUS SON OF THE FATHER. SO THIS JESUS HAD THE DEVIL AS HIS FATHER]. 17 Therefore, when they had gathered together, Pilate said to them, ‘Whom do you want me to release to you? Barabbas, or Jesus who is called the Christ?’ 18 For he knew that they had handed Him over because of envy.
20 But the chief priests and elders persuaded the multitudes that they should ask for Barabbas and destroy Jesus. 21 The governor answered and said to them, ‘Which of the two do you want to release to you? They answered Barabbas!’ 22 Pilate said to them, ‘What then shall I do with Jesus who is called Christ?’ [PILATE WAS AWARE THAT THE NOTORIOUS PRISONER WAS ALSO NAMED JESUS BECAUSE HE IDENTIFIED THE NONVIOLENT JESUS AS “JESUS WHO IS CALLED CHRIST.”] They all said to him, ‘Let Him be crucified!’ 23 Then the governor said, ‘What evil has He done?’ But they cried out all the more, saying, ‘Let Him be crucified!’ 24 When Pilate saw that he could not prevail at all, but rather a tumult was rising, he took water and washed his hands before the multitude, saying, ‘I am innocent of the blood of this just Person. You see to it.’ 25 And all the people answered and said, ‘His blood be on us and on our children.’ 26 Then he released Barabbas to them; and when he had scourged Jesus, he delivered Him to be crucified (Matthew 27: 15-26, emphasis added)].
What manner of sin would Jesus attribute to these fake believers in Him?
34 Jesus answered them, ‘Most assuredly I say to you, ‘whoever commits sin is a slave of sin. 35 And a slave does not abide in the house forever, but a son abides forever. 36 Therefore if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed (John 8:36).
Note what the apostle Paul states regarding our position in regards to the two kingdoms, the kingdom of Satan, and the kingdom of God:
16 Do you not know to whom you present yourselves slaves to obey, you are that one’s slaves whom you obey, whether of sin leading to death, or of obedience leading to righteousness?
23 For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord (Romans 6: 16, 23, emphasis added).
We all have either God as our Father or the devil as our father. God gives us life and the devil gives us death.
What sin is Jesus referring to when he told these apparent believers “Whoever commits sin is a slave of sin”? What is this sin Jesus is talking about? Jesus provides the answer:
of sin because they do not believe in Me (John 16:9, emphasis added).
Even though these believers claimed to believe in Jesus, He told them that what they believed was not in harmony with His God, the only true God; rather, they were in harmony with their father, the devil. Jesus gives a simple reason for their condition. They did not want to completely abide in Jesus’ word because they did not want to become His “disciples indeed:”
If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed. And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free (John 8:31-32).
We Christians must pay attention to Jesus’ words regarding Himself. By becoming Jesus’ disciples indeed, we “shall know the truth, and the truth shall make us free” from the lies of the Devil. Then and only then can we claim to be His “disciples indeed.” Unless we do this, we will remain slaves of the devil and will not abide in the house of God forever.
21 Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My father in heaven. 22 ‘Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ 23 And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you, depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness [INIQUITY] (Matthew 7: 21-23, emphasis added).
The followers Jesus addressed in John chapter eight were all believers in Him, but they all had the devil as their father. As Christians, they did many wonders in the power of their father the devil. They were all workers of iniquity, the same iniquity that was found in Lucifer when he rebelled against God:
14 And no wonder! For Satan himself transforms himself into an angel of light. 15 Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also transform themselves into ministers of righteousness, whose end will be according to their work (2Corinthians 11: 14-15)].
Only Jesus Christ can set us free from the lies of the devil. When that happens, then we can become free indeed from the devil’s supreme lie. The false followers of Christ eventually wanted to kill Him. Why so? Because they believed “the lie” that God is a killer. Therefore, modelling themselves after the god they believed in, they wanted to do the same to Jesus, who was boldly showing them their error:
37 I know that you are Abraham’s descendants, but you seek to kill Me, because My word has no place in you (John 8:37).
Not only Jews and Christians have fallen for this lie. Our Islamic brothers also believe they are Abraham’s descendants, and like the so-called followers of Jesus, they too believe in a God of violence in the same way that Jews and Christians believe.
Christians, Messianic Jews and Muslims who believe in a God of violence also believe in Jesus. But the Jesus they believe in is not the Jesus who revealed Himself and His Father two thousand years ago.
The Jews who were arguing with Jesus brought in the Old Testament to show that they had credentials—they were Abraham’s descendants. Jesus acknowledged that they were right, as they were indeed descendants of Abraham. But the same source that credited them as being Abraham’s descendants, the Old Testament, also taught them to believe in a violent God; accordingly, they wanted to kill Jesus.
Jesus, on the other hand, was trying to teach them that God is nonviolent, but they rejected His teachings. For this reason, Jesus’ words had no place in them, confirming what He said in verses thirty-one and thirty-two:
Then Jesus said to those Jews who believed Him, ‘If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed. And You shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free (John 8:31-32).
These pseudo believers were unwilling to accept “the truth” from Jesus that would have set them free from “the lie” they believed about God—that He kills. The teachings of Jesus Christ would have set them free from “the sin” which involves believing the lie about God’s character.
Jesus knew the truth about His Father’s character of agape love because of who He was. He compared two radically different fathers who are over the Human race. In the case of these deceived believers, He told them that it is not God who is their Father but someone else:
I speak what I have seen with My Father, and you do what you have seen with your father (John 8:38).
His Father—the only true God—doesn’t kill anyone. Jesus knew this truth personally, that is why He said, “I speak what I have seen with My Father.” But they did not want to know the Father Jesus was attempting to reveal to them.
Then He said to them: “You do what you have seen with your father.” When did they personally see what their father the devil did? Had they ever observed their father the devil killing anyone? Jesus was telling them how they learned about their father the devil. They learned about him from reading the Old Testament. That is where they came to know their father, the devil. In their understanding, all the killing of the wicked in the Old Testament was attributed to God, when in reality all that was done by the power of their father the devil. This is how they were doing what they had seen their father do. Thus, Jesus confirmed that God was not the one killing the wicked in the Old Testament.
These so-called believers wanted to kill Jesus; why? As Abraham’s descendants, they saw in the Old Testament what God did to the wicked. Therefore, since they believed Jesus to be an evil person, they wanted to do the work of their father the devil, and kill Jesus. But that was not the work of Jesus’ Father.
Jesus did not refer to them as murderers but as men-slayers. He conveyed the truth that they were emulating what they believed to be the God of the Old Testament. This is the truth Jesus is conveying to them.
39 They answered and said to Him, ‘Abraham is our father.’ Jesus said to them, ‘If you were Abraham’s children, you would do the works of Abraham. 40 But now you seek to kill Me, a Man who has told you the truth which I heard from God. Abraham did not do this. 41 ‘You do the deeds of your father.’ Then they said to Him, ‘We were not born of fornication; we have one Father – God.’ 42 Jesus said to them, ‘If God were your Father, you would love Me, for I proceeded forth and came from God; nor have I come of Myself, but He sent Me.’ 43 Why do you not understand My speech? Because you are not able to listen to My word.’
Again, we ask the question: why did they want to kill Jesus? Wasn’t it because their father was the killer in the Old Testament? Jesus eventually does clearly tell them in verse forty-four that it is their father who is the true killer, not God. He tells them that the reason they want to kill Him is because He is telling them the truth from God and about God. The problem was that what He was telling them was contrary to what they had learned from the Old Testament.
As professed believers in Jesus why did they not understand His speech? As simply as it can be stated, they were listening to what their father the devil had taught them, instead of Jesus.
Since the devil is the one who has the power of death, then who killed, or was responsible for the entire killing of the wicked in the Old Testament? We know that it wasn’t the Creator God, because the one who has the power of death is the devil, even though at times it is stated that it was God who destroyed sinners.
Note how Paul communicates to us that God did not kill the wicked in the Old Testament but “passed over the sins that were previously committed”:
23 For all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God, [THE GLORY OF GOD IS HIS CHARACTER OF AGAPE LOVE], 24 [ALL HAVE SINNED AND ALL HAVE] being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, 25 whom God set forth as a propitiation [MERCY SEAT] by His blood through faith, to demonstrate His righteousness, [HIS CHARACTER OF AGAPE LOVE], because in His forbearance [AGAPE LOVE] God had passed over the sins that were previously committed [DURING THE OLD TESTAMENT PERIOD] 26 to demonstrate at the present time His righteousness, that He might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus Christ (Romans 5: 23-26, emphasis added).
According to what Paul has stated, during the Old Testament period “God had passed over the sins that were previously committed.” Since “God had passed over” those sins in the Old Testament, then who killed the sinners in the Old Testament? It has to be the one “who had the power of death, that is, the devil”—not God.
This revelation and understanding was given solely by Christ Jesus.
44 You are of your father the devil, and the desires of your father you want to do. He was a murderer [MEN-SLAYER] from the beginning, [HIS REBELLION AGAINST GOD’S GOVERNMENT OF AGAPE LOVE], and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own resources, for he is a liar and the father of it (John 8:44, emphasis added).
The false believers in Jesus, whom He is addressing above, had as their father the devil, the one who has “the power of death.” Thus, having him as their father they believed “the lie” about God’s character and committed “the sin”. Violence and death are embedded in “the sin” and belongs to their father, the devil.
And they had as king over them the angel of the bottomless pit, whose name in Hebrew is Abaddon [DESTRUCTION], but in Greek he has the name Apollyon [DESTROYER] (Revelation 9: 11, emphasis added).
When we reject Jesus’ teachings about God’s character of agape love, we too make the devil our father; we too believe “the lie” from him and commit “the sin.” Accordingly, we do the desires of our father by believing that God is the man-slayer on earth. This is how the devil “is a liar and the father of it.” He caused Adam and Eve to believe “the lie” “because there is no truth in him.” The human race also believes this same lie about God’s character.
45 But because I tell the truth, you do not believe Me (John 8:45).
We as Christians are just as guilty of the same sin that was committed by believers in Jesus during His earthly ministry. Jesus has told us “the truth” about God’s character of agape love, but we do not believe Him. “The sin” that they committed, we are committing the same as well, by rejecting “the truth” that He gave them.
Instead of being freed from “the sin,” they zealously and tenaciously held on to it. We do the same when we reject Jesus’ revelation of God. “The sin” of which they were in slavery to is repeated here again in the following words of Jesus, and they can also apply to us, as believers in Jesus:
31 Then Jesus said to those Jews who believed Him, ‘If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed. 32 And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.
34 …Most assuredly I say to you, whoever commits sin is a slave of sin. 35 And a slave does not abide in the house forever, but a son abides forever. 36 Therefore if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed (John8: 31,32, 34-36).]
46 ‘Which of you convicts Me of sin? And if I tell the truth, why do you not believe Me? 47 He who is of God hears God’s words; therefore, you do not hear, because you are not of God (John 8: 28-47, emphasis added)
Please pay the utmost attention to verse forty-seven because it says it all. Those so-called believers in Jesus Christ were unequivocally told by Him that they “ARE NOT OF GOD.” Why? All who believe Jesus’ words about God “hears God’s words.” But those who do not believe Jesus’ words about God “do not hear, because [THEY] are not of God.”
We are Jesus’ “disciples indeed” when we abide in His word. Then we “shall know the truth, and the truth shall make [US] free.” Verse forty-seven does not apply to those who are Jesus Christ’s “disciples indeed.”
Those who are of God and hear God’s words know that the Second Coming of Jesus Christ is imminent. Those who know God through Jesus have something they need to give the world: they need to give to God’s children, that is, the human race, the truth from Jesus Christ about God’s character of agape love. We must embrace Jesus Christ’s truth about God’s character and live it out with our entire being. Then we can share it with others, because God’s agape love is for all of humanity.
There is something that is excruciatingly painful and of supreme importance to God. He longingly wants His human children to know the truth about His character. He wants all to believe unequivocally that He has never done any harm to His children or to His creation. Jesus taught this in the Sermon on the Mount, even though the Old Testament taught otherwise.
43 You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbour and hate your enemy.’ [THE OLD TESTAMENT TAUGHT HOW GOD AND HIS FOLLOWERS KILLED ENEMIES, EVEN MEN, WOMEN, CHILDREN AND ANIMALS]. 44 But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you, 45 that you may be sons of your Father in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust. [SUCH REVOLUTIONARY TEACHING WAS NEVER HEARD BEFORE FROM ANYONE IN THE ENTIRE WORLD, EXCEPT FROM JESUS CHRIST]. 46 For if you love those who love you, what reward have you? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? 47 And if you greet your brethren only, what do you do more than others? Do not even the tax collectors do so? 48 Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect (Matthew 5: 43-48, emphasis added).
Paul, who personally learned from Jesus, states it this way:
6 For when we were still without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. 7 For scarcely for a righteous man will one die; yet perhaps for a good man someone would even dare to die. 8 But God demonstrates His own love towards us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. 9 Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him. 10 For if when we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled we shall be saved by His life (Romans 5: 6-11, emphasis added).
THE CREATOR GOD AND THE SEVENTH DAY
The seventh-day was to play a pivotal role in connection with God’s agape love. It was meant to establish the truth that the Creator is the God of agape love. It was established to teach us that someone else other than the Creator is the destroyer. It was established to show us that the two, Creator and destroyer, are two different beings who are antithetical to each other.
God cannot be both the Creator and also the destroyer. We will see further on that if He was that way then He would be divided, and would be operating a divided kingdom.
There is a significant difference between the fourth commandment in the Decalogue and the Sabbath that was given to Adam and Eve before they sinned. The Sabbath rest was narrated in this manner at the end of creation week before Adam and Eve committed “the sin:”
2 And on the seventh day God ended His work which He had done, and He rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had done. 3 Then God blessed the seventh day and sanctified it, because in it he rested from all His work which God had created and made (Genesis 2: 2-3).
Then, approximately twenty-five hundred years after creation week, when sin had already affected God’s perfect creation, the forth commandment is stated thus:
8 Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. 9 Six days you shall labor and do all your work. 10 but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord your God. In it you shall do no work: you, nor your son, nor your daughter, nor your male servant, nor your female servant, nor your cattle, nor your stranger who is within your gate. 11 For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and hallowed it (Exodus 20: 8-11, emphasis added).
After creation week God simply stated that He rested on the seventh day from all the work which He had done, and that He blessed it and sanctified it. But in the fourth commandment we are told to “remember.” Why are we told in the fourth commandment that we are to “Remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy”? The Sabbath given during creation week was a memorial, something meant to remind us always that God is the Creator. God knew that after sin, destruction, due to Satan’s rule, would begin to take place. Therefore, He wanted the human race to remember that He is the Creator, and that all of the fallout from sin is the work of another, it is the work of the destroyer, as we read in Revelation 9:11.
Because we lost the spiritual significance of the Sabbath and believed God to be both the Creator and the destroyer of His creation, we, in our minds and actions, were not keeping the Sabbath holy. On the contrary, we made it unholy to the ultimate degree.
The six days of labor that precede the Sabbath are a type of the works-oriented system of salvation, the reward and punishment system which the devil established on earth when Adam and Eve ate of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Thus, we could say that the six days of labour point to the consequence of what sin has done when Adam and Eve disobeyed God and obeyed the devil.
“The prince of this world” is the devil. The devil’s mode of governance is not of God, and is entirely different from God’s governance. Thus, the curses in Genesis 3:17-19 came in as a result of our first parents’ obeying the devil. The curses God outlined to Adam are not a direct punishment from God for disobeying Him, but rather, they are a natural consequence of their becoming slaves to the devil’s kingdom. The devil became “the prince of this world” when Adam and Eve obeyed him. Therefore, it was under the law of his kingdom that they were to experience the horrible consequences of their choice. God pronounces blessings, not curses. The curse came from the cursed tree and the system it represented, even though it reads that it came from God:
17 Then to Adam He said, ’Because you have heeded the voice of your wife, and eaten from the tree of which I commanded you, saying, ‘You shall not eat of it’: ‘Cursed is the ground for your sake; in toil you shall eat of it all the days of your life. 18 Both thorn and thistles it shall bring forth for you, and you shall eat the herb of the field. 19 In the sweat of your face you shall eat bread till you return to the ground, for out of it you were taken; for dust you are, and to dust you shall return (Genesis 3:17-19, emphasis added).
In Matthew chapter 13: 24-30, and 36-39, Jesus tells us: “The enemy who sowed them is the devil….” And we also know that the power of death over us belongs to the devil: “and to dust you shall return.”
The seventh day is to be kept holy by remembering that arduous labor, both physical and spiritual, is not forced upon humanity by the Creator-God, but is the result of living under the leadership of the devil.
DIVIDED KINGDOM AND NOT A DIVIDED KINGDOM
Jesus said something to the Pharisees which, in order to understand it, we must be imbued with God’s wisdom. This concerns an exceedingly important principle which He communicated to them in Matthew 12:22-32. What Jesus says here is of paramount spiritual significance because in this discourse is embedded a foundational law. Paul stated the same in these words:
For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus, has set me free from the law of sin and death (Romans 8: 2).
Paul is talking about two laws here: one is of God and the other is of the devil. God’s law is “the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus” which was represented by “the tree of life.” The other law, “the law of sin and death,” is the devil’s law, which was represented by “the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.”
If we understand what Jesus taught in Matthew 12:22-32 we will be able to differentiate between God and Satan and the corresponding principles of their kingdoms. Moreover, we will become wise as to how they both operate. And we will become especially enlightened concerning how God is involved in inflicting disease, sickness, infirmities on the disobedient and wicked. Furthermore, we will understand what is behind all the killing of the wicked that took place in the Old Testament.
In Matthew 12 Jesus made known a principle that helps us understand the heavenly truth that God cannot be both the One who gives life as well as the One who takes life. It is because of this principle, among others, that we know that He cannot be both the Creator and the Destroyer of His creation and its inhabitants:
22 Then one was brought to Him who was demon possessed, blind and mute; and He healed him, so that the blind and mute man both spoke and saw. 23 And all the multitudes were amazed and said, ‘Could this be the Son of David?’ 24 Now when the Pharisees heard it they said, ‘This fellow does not cast out demons except by Beelzebub, the ruler of the demons.” 25 But Jesus knew their thoughts, and said to them: ‘Every kingdom divided against itself will not stand. 26 If Satan casts out Satan, he is divided against himself. How then will his kingdom stand? 27 And if I cast out demons by Beelzebub, by whom do your sons cast them out? Therefore they shall be your judges. 28 But if I cast out demons by the Spirit of God, surely the kingdom of God has come upon you. [BECAUSE THE KINGDOM OF GOD IS NOT DIVIDED]. 29 Or how can one enter a strong man’s house and plunder his goods, unless he first binds the strong man? And then he will plunder his house. 30 He who is not with Me is against Me, and he who does not gather with Me scatters abroad. 31 Therefore I say to you, every sin and blasphemy will be forgiven men, but the blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven men. 32 Anyone who speaks a word against the Son of Man, it will be forgiven him; but whoever speaks against the Holy Spirit, it will not be forgiven him, either in this age or in the age to come (Matthew 12: 22-32, emphasis added).
The principle Jesus shared was this: “Every kingdom divided against itself will not stand.” Thus, it is by the durability of a kingdom—whether or not it lasts—that we can know whether it is a divided kingdom or not. Now, we know that God is not divided and that He does not have a divided kingdom because God’s kingdom is an eternal kingdom. His kingdom will “stand”—it will last forever. If God was divided in anyway, His kingdom would come to an end—it would not “stand.” The devil’s kingdom, however, will most certainly come to an end. So, we can also be certain that he is the one who has a divided kingdom.
According to Jesus, the work of His and the Father’s Spirit is to do this:
13 However, when He the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you in all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come. 14 He will glorify Me, for He will take of what is mine and declare it to you. 15 All things that the Father has are mine. Therefore I said that He will take of mine and declare it to you (John 16: 13-15, emphasis added).
When the Holy Spirit convicts us of what Jesus taught in Matthew 12:22-30 we will know without a shadow of a doubt that neither God nor Jesus are divided Beings, and that accordingly, they do not have a divided kingdom. What this means, then, is that neither God nor Jesus have in anyway ever done “the works of the devil.” This means that it is the devil who is responsible for all the sickness, destruction and death that has ever afflicted the human race. But if we believe that these works are from God, then what we have done is this: we have made God and Jesus to be Beelzebub.
All of Jesus’ activities were directed toward undoing the works of the devil. Satan had brought disease and death. Jesus went about healing and raising the dead.
The Holy Spirit reveals to us the difference between the works of the devil and the works of God. If we reject this foundational truth, then we commit the unpardonable sin, because by rejecting this truth we make God to be the devil. We make God into the devil by attributing to Him “the works of the devil.”
Jesus, the Creator, has no darkness in Him. We must know this with certainty—it is of supreme spiritual importance that we know this. There is no darkness in either Jesus or God. Rejecting Jesus’ revelation of God’s character is equivalent to believing and promoting that there is darkness in Jesus and in God. The apostle John learned from Jesus this most important truth about God that all humanity also must know:
This is the message which we have heard from Him and declare to you, that God is light and in Him is no darkness at all (1John 1: 5 emphasis added).
Then Jesus spoke to them again, saying, ‘I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life’ (John 8: 12, emphasis added).
GOD’S CHARACTER OF AGAPE LOVE IN CREATION
Genesis 1:1 declares that “in the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.” The very next statement in Genesis 1:2a is of grave and critical importance, in contrast to the work of God in Genesis 1:1.
The earth was without form and void; and darkness was on the face of the deep (Genesis 1:1).
As we look at these passages, we ask the reader to pay close attention to the words “light” and “darkness.” We will soon see the spiritual significance concerning light and darkness in the seventh day. The same Creator God spoken of in Genesis 1:1 finished His work of creation at the end of the sixth day:
31 Then God saw everything that He has made, and indeed it was very good. So the evening and the morning was the sixth day… 1 Thus the heavens and the earth, and all the host of them, were finished (Genesis 1:31-2:1).
The six days of creation were finished, and God declared that creation was not just good, but “indeed it was very good.” God’s creation was amazingly glorious and exquisitely awesome. But something still needed to be done to end God’s work of creation. As recorded in chapter two, verse one, creation was finished, but it was not yet ended. What does this mean? Chapter two, verse two, specifies that something else needed to be done before the work of creation could end:
2 And on the seventh day God ended His work which He had done, and He rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had done.3 Then God blessed the seventh day and sanctified it, because in it He rested from all His work which God had created and made (Genesis 2: 2-3, emphasis added).
Although God’s astounding creation was finished on the sixth day it did not come to a complete end until the seventh day was created.
Each day during the previous six days of creation had ended with the phrase “the evening and the morning.” But the seventh day did not end with this phrase. Why didn’t the seventh day have the specific phrase, “the evening and the morning”?
“Evening” represents “darkness,” and “morning” represents “light.” The seventh day ended the work of the Creator and His perfect creation. This day ended what He had started in Genesis 1:2. The reason the account of the seventh day does not include the phrase “the evening and the morning,” is to indicate that God does not have any spiritual “darkness” in His being. Likewise, in Revelation 21:25 we learn that “there shall be no night there”—no darkness in the new earth.
According to God’s predetermined plan, no other day was to follow the seventh day, because “on the seventh day God ended His work which He had done, and He rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had done.” Since no other day was to follow the seventh day there was also no need for the phrase “the evening and the morning,” as stated in the previous six days. Hence, no other day was to have the special designation of being blessed and sanctified except for the seventh day.
God’s creation, which includes the human race, would have remained in its perfect original condition had not Adam and Eve obeyed the serpent. Every seventh day would have been a special time of worship and celebration in God’s unspoiled pristine creation. To complete His work as the Creator, God created an extra twenty-four-hour time period, the seventh day.
The reason “God blessed the seventh day and sanctified it” is “because in it He rested from all His work which God had created and made.” He blessed and sanctified this particular day because in it He could rest as the agape love Creator of a perfect creation. Out of all of the other days of creation, this twenty-four-hour-time period was so sacred that God blessed and sanctified it.
Once Adam and Eve disobeyed God and obeyed the serpent, God could no longer rest—He no longer had that stipulated rest of the seventh day. Through Adam and Eve’s disobedience the devil became “the prince of this world” and began his work as the destroyer of God’s pristine creation (which also included all other creatures). Thus, when Adam and Eve disobeyed God, their action set in motion all the destruction and fallout that resulted from their obedience to the devil. Destruction was a condition that was up until then, unknown in God’s perfect creation.
Because of this new state of things, God the Father and Jesus had to get back to work in order to save creation from the destroying power of the devil. Thus began God’s work of restoring all the damage the devil had done, which had affected all of His creation. Therefore, the apostle John says:
…. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that He might destroy the works of the devil (1 John 3: 8).
When Jesus began His ministry, He did God’s work of destroying “the works of the devil” six days of the week. But particular and special significance is attached to all that He did on the Sabbath.
Perusing some of Jesus’ activities as to how “He might destroy the works of the devil”, on the Sabbath in particular, will prove to be quite revealing. Take for instance, the event told in John chapter five, where Jesus heals a man on the Sabbath, a man “who had an infirmity thirty-eight years” (John 5: 1ff):
8 Jesus said to him, ‘Rise, take up your bed and walk.’ 9 And immediately the man was made well, took up his bed, and walked. And that day was the Sabbath. 10 The Jews therefore said to him who was cured, ‘It is the Sabbath; it is not lawful for you to carry your bed.’ 11 He answered them, ‘He who made me well said to me, ‘Take up your bed and walk.’ 12 Then they asked him, ‘Who is the man who said to you,’ ‘Take up your bed and walk?’ 13 But the one who was healed did not know who it was, for Jesus had withdrawn, a multitude being in that place. 14 After Jesus found him in the temple, and said to him, ‘See, you have been made well. Sin no more, lest a worst thing come upon you.’ 15 The man departed and told the Jews that it was Jesus who had made him well. 16 For this reason the Jews persecuted Jesus, and sought to kill Him, because He had done these things on the Sabbath. 17 But Jesus answered them, ‘My Father has been working until now, and I have been working.’ 18 Therefore the Jews sought all the more to kill Him, because He not only broke the Sabbath, but also said that God was His Father, making Himself equal with God. 19 Then Jesus answered and said to them, ‘Most assuredly, I say to you, the Son can do nothing of Himself, but what He sees the Father do; for whatever He does, the Son also does in like manner. 20 For the Father loves the Son, and shows Him all things that He Himself does; and He will show Him greater works than these, that you may marvel. 21 For as the Father raises the dead and gives life to them, even so the Son gives life to whom He will. 22 For the Father judges no one, but has committed all judgment to the Son, 23 that all should honor the Son just as they honor the Father. He who does not honor the Son does not honor the Father who sent Him (John 5: 8-22, emphasis added).
The seventh day was created for an exclusive and distinct spiritual reason. It was put in place so that we should never attribute to the Creator any of the works of destruction and death that followed after Adam and Eve obeyed the devil and ate “of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.” Jesus is God the Creator. He is the active agent of the creation narrative In Genesis.
31 Then God saw everything that He had made, and indeed it was very good. So the evening and the morning were the sixth day.
1 Thus the heavens and the earth, and all the host of them, were finished. 2 And on the seventh day God ended His work which he had done, and He rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had done. 3 Then God blessed the seventh day and sanctified it, because in it He rested from all His work which God had created and made. 4 This is the history of the heavens and the earth when they were created, in the day that the Lord God made the earth and the heavens (Genesis 1: 31- 2:4, emphasis added).
The word “history” in verse 4 in Hebrew is toledoth; literally, toledoth means generations.
The profound spiritual significance of this twenty-four-hour time period goes to the very heart of God’s character of agape love. It cannot be separated from the very essence of His being that God is agape love (1 John 4:8, 16).
Satan, the supreme deceiver and ultimate enemy of God has one resolute agenda, which is to be worshipped. He is fully aware that if he can succeed in neutralizing the important spiritual significance of the Sabbath he will have achieved his ultimate goal. If we fail to see what the Sabbath truly represents, then, not surprisingly, humanity will be worshipping Satan.
Jesus Christ the Creator God created an extra twenty-four-hour time period during creation week to be commemorative of the fact that He is the Lord of the Sabbath. This memorial was established and was never to be forgotten, to remind us that He is the Creator. Thus, whenever any destruction takes place, “remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy.”
The foundational way in which we are to keep the Sabbath day holy is by knowing that God is the Creator and by distinguishing Him with absolute certainty from the destroyer. God is the Creator and Satan is the destroyer who is responsible for all of the work of death and destruction that has marred the earth. By knowing the truth about God’s character, we will be worshipping the true God of the Bible instead of the false god who wants to be worshipped at all costs. This is how we will be keeping the Sabbath day holy.
Through Jesus, who is “Immanuel” “God with us” we are able to distinguish the true God from the false god.
18 Now the birth of Jesus Christ was as follows: After His mother Mary was betrothed to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Spirit. 19 Then Joseph her husband, being a just man, and not wanting to make her a public example, was minded to put her away secretly. 20 But while he thought about these things, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, ‘Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take to you Mary your wife, for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit. 21 and she will bring forth a Son, and you shall call His name Jesus, For He will save His people from their sins.’ 22 So all this was done that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the Lord through the prophet saying: 23 ‘Behold, the virgin shall be with child, and bear a Son, and they shall call His name Immanuel,’ which is translated, God with us’ (Matthew 1: 18-23, emphasis added).
…. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that He might destroy the works of the devil (1 John 3: 8).
14 Inasmuch then as the children have partaken of flesh and blood, He Himself likewise shared in the same, that through death He might destroy him who had the power of death, that is, the devil, 15 and release those who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage (Hebrews 2: 14-15, emphasis added).
How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power, who went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with Him (Acts 10: 38).
10 Now He was teaching in one of the synagogues on the Sabbath. 11 And behold, there was a woman who had a spirit of infirmity eighteen years, and was bent over and could in no way raise herself up. 12 But when Jesus saw her, He called her to Him and said to her, ‘Woman, you are loosed from your infirmity.’ 13 And He laid His hands on her, and immediately she was made straight, and glorified God. 14 But the ruler of the synagogue answered with indignation, because Jesus had healed on the Sabbath; and he said to the crowd, ‘There are six days on which men ought to work; therefore come and be healed on them, and not on the Sabbath day.’ 15 The Lord then answered him and said, ‘Hypocrite! Does not each of you on the Sabbath loose his ox or donkey from the stall, and lead it away to water it? 16 So ought not this woman, being a daughter of Abraham, whom Satan has bound – think of it – for eighteen years, be loosed from this bond on the Sabbath? 17 And when He said these things, all His adversaries were put to shame; and all the multitude rejoiced for all the glorious things that were done by Him (Luke 13: 10-17, emphasis added).
Jesus “the Lord of the Sabbath” came to this world to undo all of the works of the devil.
27 And He said to them, ‘The Sabbath was made for man, and not man for the Sabbath. 28 Therefore the Son of Man is also Lord of the Sabbath.’
1 And He entered the synagogue again, and a man was there who had a withered hand. 2 So they watched Him closely, whether He would heal him on the Sabbath, so that they might accuse [bring charges against] Him. 3 And He said to the man who had the withered hand, ‘Step forward.’ 4 Then He said to them, ‘Is it lawful on the Sabbath to do good or to do evil, [INFLICTING PAIN, SUFFERING AND DEATH ON HUMANITY] to save life or to kill [TO TAKE LIFE]?’ but they kept silent. 5 And when He had looked around at them with anger, being grieved by the hardness of their hearts, He said to the man, ‘Stretch out your hand.’ And he stretched it out, and his hand was restored as whole as the other. 6 Then the Pharisees went out and immediately plotted with the Herodians against Him, how they might destroy Him (Mark 2: 27-3: 6, emphasis added).
Speaking of Lucifer, who became the devil, the prophet Isaiah stated:
16 Those who see you will gaze at you, and consider you, saying: ‘Is this the man who made the earth tremble, who shook kingdoms, 17 who made the world as a wilderness and destroyed its cities who did not open the house of his prisoners?’
20 You will not be joined with them in burial, because you have destroyed your land and slain your people. The brood of evil doers shall never be named (Isaiah 14: 16-17, 20, emphasis added).
In these last verses Isaiah clearly reveals who the destroyer is— who is responsible for the death of his people. It is Satan who has slain his people, not God.