Christ, the Fulfilment of the Sabbath

Until the man in Christ sees the Law and the practices in it as shadows of the realities in Christ, keeping the Law and its practices will be his priority, though the reality, which is Christ, has come. The Law is a shadow; Christ is the reality.

“For the law having a shadow of good things to come, and not the very image of the things, can never make those who keep it perfect.” Hebrews 10:1
The Sabbath day was a requirement of the Law. The Lord commanded Israel saying; “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work; but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the LORD thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates.” Ex 20:8-10

The Sabbath as observed under the Old Testament Law was a shadow and not a reality. They were to rest and do no work on the Sabbath day. This was a shadow of our rest in Christ and how we have ceased from our own works in Him.
The six days of work stood for the period of the Old Testament where men were to work for everything, while the Sabbath Day rest foreshadowed the New Testament where Jesus has worked for us to enter into His rest.

Under the Old Testament men had to work for everything by obeying the Law and Ordinances of the Covenant. To be declared righteous, one would have to work for it; to be blessed one would have to work for it by obeying the Law himself etc.

But, in Christ it is not so. Jesus has done the work for us and therefore we have ceased from our own works and entered into His Sabbath Rest. The Bible is clear on this; “Let us therefore fear, lest, a promise being left us of entering into his rest, any of you should seem to come short of it. For we which have believed do enter into rest… For he speak in a certain place of the seventh day on this wise, And God did rest the seventh day from all his works. And in this place again, If they shall enter into my rest.
For if Joshua had given them rest, then would he not afterward have spoken of another day. There remaineth therefore a rest to the people of God. For he that is entered into his rest, he also hath ceased from his own works, as God did from his.” Hebrews 4:1-10

Here, we see a promise of rest for God’s people which the Israelites could not enter into because of their unbelief. The Sabbath day rest was not the actual rest; that rest was shadowing the actual rest which is only attainable by faith in Christ Jesus.

Therefore, though Israel observed the Sabbath Day as required by the Law of Moses, they still could not enter into God’s rest because that was a shadow and not the actual rest (verse 6). But, we who are of faith have entered into the actual rest which is in Christ (verse 2).

And just as Israel was to cease working on the Sabbath Day, we have therefore ceased from our own works and have put our faith in the finished works of Jesus Christ (verse 10). Jesus Christ speaking on this said that;

“Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” Matt 11:28

He said that because He knew that in Christ is the actual rest which the Sabbath Day foreshadowed. Christ has become our everlasting rest; He is our everlasting Sabbath. We are always at rest in Him. Paul also according to the revelations given unto him wrote that;

“Let no man therefore judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of an holyday, or of the new moon, or of the Sabbath days: which are a shadow of things to come, but the substance is of Christ.” Col 2:1617

You see, the Sabbath as observed under the Law was a shadow; Christ is the main thing—Christ is the real deal. This was why Jesus Christ broke the Sabbath on three different occasions and when He was questioned by the Pharisees and doctors of the Law, He said; “…the Son of man is Lord also of the Sabbath.” Mark 2:28

In other words, something which is greater than the Sabbath has come.

The Sabbath Day was just a shadow; and now that the reality has come, there is no use keeping the shadow. Keeping the Law is equal to making Christ of no effect in your life. “Christ is become of no effect unto you, whosoever of you are justified by the law; ye are fallen from grace.” Gal 5:4

We have entered into God’s everlasting rest. The Sabbath to the man in Christ is not just a day of rest, but, Eternal rest in Christ Jesus; every day is a day of rest in Him unto us.