Why I Now Observe The Weekly Sabbath Predicated Upon The Lunar Cycle
Change is never easy. Especially when you have stood for something so painstakingly your entire life. Maybe the most difficult thing I have ever done was to look a theology in the eye and deal with the possibility I was told a lie concerning that doctrine. I believed it. I lived it. I owned it. Observing the seventh day Sabbath on Saturday was written on my DNA for birth and there was no way, I was doing it wrong. Right?
Well…. Right…. And wrong.
Clearly, looking back now, I was observing the weekly sabbath on Saturday, the seventh day of the Gregorian week, according to the knowledge I had at the time. The first 38 years of my life. However, I know now, I was wrong in the theology taught to me from childhood concerning the true Sabbath of scripture….. And it made me mad as a hornet for at least 18 months while I was studying the subject for myself, after being challenged by a non-believing Catholic on an internet forum in the early days of the common household worldwide web access back in the year 2003.
The challenge went something like this….
“Did you know the Jews readily admit they changed the Sabbath to Saturday, with just as much authority as we Catholics had to change the Sabbath to Sunday….. Which was none?”
He produce a sub-story from The Universal Jewish Encyclopedia that stated the following:
Well, naturally I knew right off this was a lie, so I took it to my local Jewish synagogue and ran it past Rabbi Joseph, the H.J.I.C. there. To my shock, he confirmed the fact, the Jews knew all along, the Sabbath was original, during the days of Moses and the Exodus predicated on the lunar cycle, not a solar event at all, as the Jews themselves observe. Rabbi Joseph went on to inform me, anything in scripture before the Babylonian Exile was simply a myth. The Genesis account of creation, the Noahasian flood, captivity in Egypt, the Exodus, and all the Kings of Israel and Judah, including King David and Solomon was all mostly fiction. Stories handed down from one generation to another, all blown totally out of proportion.
I was dumbfounded. In utter disgust, I began to call other Rabbi requesting confirmation of all this hogwash I had discovered, standing ready to file some sort of report on Mr. Know-it-all Rabbi Joseph, who obviously was full of tommyrot to no end. The next Rabbi I spoke with was from an Atlanta Synogog. His body language told me I was barking up a very uncomfortable tree. He wanted to know where I was getting my information to formulate such questions. So, after I told him, he was quite deliberate in the use of his words as he explained the lower laity of Judaism really had no clue about such things, but yes, the basis of what I was asking was true. The sages know, the bible is really just stories and the real truth lies in the Talmud.
After doing some further research I came to the conclusion there was quite a lot more than just a change in the weekly Sabbath afoot. The very source of much of the truth I had come to accept based upon the expertise of the Jews was now in massive peril, and it wasn’t just the Sabbath I was now questioning. So, in the prime of my adult life, I began digging. I held nothing back. I left no stone unturned.
It was shortly before this time, maybe a year prior, I had studied the subject of observing the period of New-Moon as a set apart time, to which scripture very clearly excluded buying and selling. I was convinced via the following text, the day of New-Moon has a special meaning in the plan of salvation and it was guarded just as much as the weekly Sabbath and Annual Feast Days.
“Hear this, you who trample on the needy and bring the poor of the land to an end, saying, “When will the New Moon be over, that we may sell grain?
And the Sabbath, that we may offer wheat for sale, that we may make the ephah small and the shekel great and deal deceitfully with false balances,
that we may buy the poor for silver and the needy for a pair of sandals
and sell the chaff of the wheat?” Amos 8:4–6
I was only just learning and considering how important the concept of buying and selling was throughout scripture. There was a great debate raging throughout the Sabbath-keeping Churches of God concerning the topic of eating out on the weekly Sabbath. My wife and I landed on the side that said, scripture is quite clear there are really very few prohibitions concerning how to keep the Sabbath, but buying and selling was certainly one to be circumspect over. We were quite certain, The Almighty frowned on paying people to prepare our food after church services and then serve us like we were kings and queens as we celebrated His rest period. The text that we based this hard stance upon were these.
“And if the peoples of the land bring in goods or any grain on the Sabbath day to sell, we will not buy from them on the Sabbath or on a holy day. And we will forego the crops of the seventh year and the exaction of every debt.” Nehemiah 10:31
“In those days I saw in Judah people treading winepresses on the Sabbath, and bringing in heaps of grain and loading them on donkeys, and also wine, grapes, figs, and all kinds of loads, which they brought into Jerusalem on the Sabbath day. And I warned them on the day when they sold food. Tyrians also, who lived in the city, brought in fish and all kinds of goods and sold them on the Sabbath to the people of Judah, in Jerusalem itself! Then I confronted the nobles of Judah and said to them, “What is this evil thing that you are doing, profaning the Sabbath day? Did not your fathers act in this way, and did not our God bring all this disaster on us and on this city? Now you are bringing more wrath on Israel by profaning the Sabbath.” Nehemiah 13:15–18
As well as the passage quoted above from Amos 8.
It was here in my studies, the Almighty began to reveal a couple of things to me that readied me for what was coming in my thought process.
1 — Just about everywhere I saw New-Moon mentioned in scripture, I also saw the weekly Sabbath joined at the hip.
2 Chronicles 2:4, 2 Chronicles 8:12–13, 2 Chronicles 31:3, Nehemiah 10:32–33, Isaiah 66:23, Ezekiel 45:17, Ezekiel 46:1–3, 2Kings 4:23, Amos 8:5, Isaiah 1:13–14, Hosea 2:11, and Colossians 2:16.
2 — The period of New-Moon was totally ambiguous to most all Sabbath-keeping congregations. No one had a plausible answer to why the modern-day commandment-keeping Churches of God or the Seventh-Day Adventist Church did not observe the day or period of New-Moon accordingly. When you would ask them, they ran from the question like you spoke a curse upon them by doing so. Not even the Jews observed New-Moon as any kind of set-apart time.
I come to see New-Moon as a lost piece of the puzzle that was a clue to a lot of truth that needed to be restored. It’s one thing to recognize an observance as pagan and to avoid it accordingly, but when everyone doesn’t observe it and it's in scripture and no one knows why….. Then that’s a clue, there’s something there to pay attention to.
We had by this time begun to abstain from buying and selling on New Moon. It was about that time, I took a closer look at Ezekiel 46:1 .
“Thus says The Sovereign YHWH: The gate of the inner court that faces east shall be shut on the six working days, but on the Sabbath day it shall be opened, and on the day of the new moon it shall be opened.” Ezekiel 46:1
Look at the text closely. I come to realize, the period of New-Moon was not one of the six working days, but I remember distinctly the day I come to this conclusion was New-Moon. It was also Wednesday. I knew within my gut something was wrong, but I couldn’t put my finger on it. I took it to my wife, who nailed it almost instantly with the gift of insight and clarity that many times only a woman can bring to the table.
Her keen logic said, “That means, there were only five working days between two Saturdays.” I knew instantly we had discovered the gold nugget in the equation. 12 times in Torah, YHWH lends detail to the Sabbath command. In all 12 Sabbath portions, the 4th commandment is a two-part command.
1 — Work Six days
2 — Rest, on the seventh day, always after the six working days.
YHWH did not say, sometimes there would be five working days, as in once every fourth week or so. This epiphany also brought forth transparency concerning the main point defining what work was most tied to. The fourth commandment prohibited servile work. Buying and selling took center stage as the defining circumstance of work to be abandoned on the Sabbath. It made clear, the stipulation to not buy and sell pointed directly to an occupational income or distribution thereof.
If I went to work for an employer, I was selling my labor. If I owned a company and employed personnel, then I was buying their labor. It more clearly defined servile work and now, it was equally resolute that this same stipulation was to be understood for New Moon as well.
I then re-examined the list of Feast Days in Leviticus 23. My thinking was, all of YHWH’s appointed times were listed there, including the weekly Sabbath. If New-Moon was an appointed time, like the Sabbath and Feast Days, surely it would be inserted in this chapter.
Now, on the surface, I knew there was no mention of the day of New-moon with the exception of The Feast of Trumpets, which was the seventh New-Moon of the year, a type of Sabbath New-Moon. More on this later. However, upon closer inspection, I realized that every time a month was mentioned, as on the 14th day of the first month, or the 10th day of the seventh month, all those references to a month are references to the system of New-Moon. In other words, void of the knowledge of acknowledging New-Moon, you could never know when each month occurred. Someone had to keep up with when the year began and when each new month began. Who was doing this? The Jews? That’s like the wiesel guarding the hen house of truth.
My studies then brought me to this text….
“He made the moon to mark the seasons; the sun knows its time for setting.” Psalms 104:19
As with any given text, the key to understanding is to make sure to identify the keywords within the text and insert the Hebrew or Greek definition to those words to unlock the sometimes hidden knowledge waiting below the surface accordingly. The verse then can be clearly understood below.
“He appointed (assigned) the moon to mark the moedim (appointed times); the sun knows its time for setting.” Psalms 104:19
Immediately, there was another gold nugget that was placed in plain sight for us to grasp. Leviticus chapter 23 was a list of all the “Worship Appointed Times” YHWH commands in Covenant Law. The very first appointed time is the weekly Sabbath.
“YHWH spoke to Moses, saying, “Speak to the people of Israel and say to them, These are the appointed feasts (Moedim) of YHWH that you shall proclaim as holy convocations; they are my appointed feasts (Moedim). “Six days shall work be done, but on the seventh day is a Sabbath of solemn rest, a holy convocation. You shall do no work. It is a Sabbath to YHWH in all your dwelling places.” Leviticus 23:1–3
Thus when we combine the information from Psalms 104:19 with Leviticus 23:2–3, it becomes clear it is the moon, not the sun that regulates the identification of the weekly Sabbath Day. This would mean there is no way the weekly Sabbath can be fixed as a set day of a Pagan, Papal, Planetary weekly calendar. There’s no way. It’s mathematically impossible.
So, while I was still in the infancy of this new understanding, I quickly drew up a monthly calendar that looked something like this:
Now, YHWH’s calendar was coming into focus in my mind. There are six working days between each weekly Sabbath and or between New-Moon and Sabbath…. And His calendar is consistent. The Sabbath is fixed as it should be in the same place every single month that comes and it always lines up with His Feast Days. A fixed Saturday Sabbath floats throughout YHWH’s Festival calendar, which after learning of this ancient way of time recognition, a floating Sabbath within a solar-only calendar makes no biblical sense whatsoever.
Ah, but there was a snag. There are either seven or eight days between the Sabbath of the 29th and the Sabbath of the 8th in the following month. On the surface, this does not fit the criteria of working six days and resting on the seventh. Once every four weeks, you would be resting for two or three days and working six days, then resting on the eighth or ninth day.
The snag was a snag because, in my own mind, the weekly Sabbath was to be every seven days, without exception. I realized this was a traditional mindset of man, not a concept of scripture at all. It took me a while to come to grips with the fact, nowhere in scripture was there a command to observe every seventh day that came, or that the weekly Sabbath occurred every seventh day. That viewpoint of a continual seven-day cycle hails from an equation void of New-Moon. Factor in the period of New-Moon (24 or 48 hours) is a third kind of day, then the continuous seventh-day Jewish theology disappears like a really bad smell in the wind.
Thus my conclusion was manifest. The Jews had lied to us unsuspecting Believers, born into their ready-made theology….. And it opened up my “eyes of inspection” upon every other theology I held that eventually went back to their substantiation. Boy was I deceived. What’s more, I assure you, you are as well. No matter how open you think your eyes are, the deception runs deep.
Anyway, I come to see the three types of days like so:
Working days, 24 in any given month, are buying and selling days, where occupational work is accomplished. The sixth day of each week would be specifically for preparation for the weekly Sabbath that would follow. Any preparatory work that can be accomplished on this sixth day must be done on that day so as to not be forced to do it on the Sabbath. Work that can not be accomplished on this day was allowed to be done on the Sabbath. An example of work that can not be accomplished on the preparation day is any unexpected work that might creep up such as an emergency or a hardship within the family or that which your family has encountered like a person that has broken down on the side of the road with a flat tire. The proverbial ox in a ditch.
Sabbath Days, four with any given month, are non-buying and selling days, where occupational work is prohibited, as well as buying and selling in regular commerce, like at the grocery store. Also prohibited would be any work that could have been done on the days leading up to the Sabbath, especially on the preparation day prior.
New Moon Days, one or two per month, are also non-buying and selling days, but this seems to be the only prohibition of work done. Scriptural examples show physical work can be accomplished on this day. New Moon is also a kind of free day where a Believer can worship or carry out governmental meetings or even do yard or house work…. Just as long as that work does not bring income.
So, the question becomes, when was the Sabbath changed from a lunar-based observance to a solar-only fixed reckoning? Well, as with every other false doctrine, and yes, I’m calling Saturday Sabbath a false doctrine of the Jews…. One of many. No false doctrine claims pre-eminence in a single day or year or even decade or century. The Enemy and in this case YHWH Himself is very wise, biding his time for just the right moment in history to establish such things. So, let's look first at the scripture itself to see if there are any clues.
“YHWH” has become like an enemy; he has swallowed up Israel; he has swallowed up all its palaces; he has laid in ruins its strongholds, and he has multiplied in the daughter of Judah mourning and lamentation. He has laid waste his booth like a garden, laid in ruins his meeting place; YHWH has caused Zion to forget festival and Sabbath, and in his fierce indignation has spurned king and priest. Lamentations 2:6
The text above has to be dealt with, via an open mind, along with its time setting. Jeremiah wrote this just after the Babylonian Exile occurred. However, with the prophetic context in mind, as with all the major and minor Prophets of the Bible, the time setting is very clearly the end of days. In this text, we can conclude, YHWH has removed the understanding of the fourth commandment from Zion (The nickname of the Jews) and their role in the kingship and priesthood of Israel. Judah was to carry YHWH’s law from generation to generation, manifesting it before the people. YHWH was, in his anger, removing this aspect of their commission via this text…. And, He was not done.
“Thus says YHWH of hosts, the Mighty One of Israel: You and your wives have declared with your mouths, and have fulfilled it with your hands, saying, ‘We will surely perform our vows that we have made, to make offerings to the queen of heaven and to pour out drink offerings to her.’ Then confirm your vows and perform your vows! Therefore hear the word of YHWH, all you of Judah who dwells in the land of Egypt: Behold, I have sworn by my great name, says YHWH, that my name shall no more be invoked by the mouth of any man of Judah in all the land of Egypt, saying, ‘As the Sovereign YHWH lives.’ Behold, I am watching over them for disaster and not for good. All the men of Judah who are in the land of Egypt shall be consumed by the sword and by famine until there is an end to them.” Jeremiah 44:25–27
So, during the days of Jeremiah, YHWH not only removed the understanding of the fourth commandment, but He also removed the third one as well. All of Israel went into captivity, either by Assyria, over a hundred years prior to or Judah into captivity to Babylon or Egypt…. All of them lost track of YHWH’s Sabbath and Feast Days, as well as the speaking (pronunciation) of His mighty name. Both commandments bring profound blessings, now lost.
Fast forward to the time of Christ.
It has been said, Christ never chastised The Jews of His day for keeping the wrong calendar or Sabbath, thus He would have kept the same appointments The Jews did. I’m sorry, this is simply not true.
“And the Pharisees and Sadducees came, and to test him they asked him to show them a sign from heaven. He answered them, “When it is evening, you say, ‘It will be fair weather, for the sky is red.’ And in the morning, ‘It will be stormy today, for the sky is red and threatening.’ You know how to interpret the appearance of the sky, but you cannot interpret the signs of THE TIMES (Moedim or Appointed Times). An evil and adulterous generation seeks for a sign, but no sign will be given to it except the sign of Jonah.” So he left them and departed.” Matthew 16:1–4
The Greek word used in verse 3, translated as “the times”, capitalized for emphasis in the text above, is the same word used in Leviticus 23:3, translated as seasons, and the same word translated as seasons in psalms 104:19, which is actually Moedim in the Hebrew, as found in The LXX, the Greek Old Testament Scriptures.
Thus Yeshua was telling the Jews of His day, both Pharisees and Sadducees, they did not know how to discern the signs of YHWH’s Appointed Times, of which the weekly Sabbath was chief.
I’ll not take the time to address Yeshua’s words to these same deceivers in John 8:44 calling them out for being of their Father, Satan the Devil, liars from the beginning, but I will address these same evil men killing one of Yeshua’s disciples simply for stating Israel’s history which is stooped in the worship of Molech, aka Saturn, as he recounts three different times in biblical history this Enemy of YHWH is identified by his day.
Before I go to Acts chapter 7, allow me to present the concept of identifying the Mighty One being worshiped via the day the people worship on.
And YHWH spoke to Moses, saying, “Speak also to the children of Israel, saying: ‘Surely My Sabbaths you shall keep, for it is a sign between Me and you throughout your generations, that you may know that I am YHWH who sanctifies you. You shall keep the Sabbath, therefore, for it is holy to you. Everyone who profanes it shall surely be put to death; for whoever does any work on it, that person shall be cut off from among his people. Work shall be done for six days, but the seventh is the Sabbath of rest, holy to YHWH. Whoever does any work on the Sabbath day, he shall surely be put to death. Therefore the children of Israel shall keep the Sabbath, to observe the Sabbath throughout their generations as a perpetual covenant. It is a sign between Me and the children of Israel forever; for in six days YHWH made the heavens and the earth, and on the seventh day He rested and was refreshed.’ ” Exodus 31:12–17
Note these words closely… ‘Surely My Sabbaths you shall keep,…… that you may know that I am YHWH.”
In other words, YHWH is identified by the correct Sabbaths which are the weekly Sabbath and The annual Sabbaths.
The same thing applies to the false gods. Those false gods are identified by their day of worship as well. Baal is the god of Sunday…. And Molech (aka Saturn) is the god of Saturday…. But just as there is no fixed idol attached to YHWH, so too is there no fixed day attached to YHWH either.
Since I have deviated this far allow just a little further digression to build a foundation along these lines concerning our story in Acts 7. I promise I am going somewhere with all of this.
In Exodus 24, YHWH makes a covenant with all of Israel to which Israel agrees to obey and guard. just over 40 days later, Israel breaks this covenant via The Golden Calf Event in Exodus 32. What you may not know is the calf is not the god, but rather it is the idol of the god Satyr, aka goat demon. If you’re not familiar with Satyr get ready to be introduced to him. He has many names in scripture and history. Note the first place we see Satyr in scripture.
“They shall no more offer their sacrifices to (goat) demons (Satyr), after whom they have played the harlot. This shall be a statute forever for them throughout their generations.” Leviticus 17:7
Thus the way the common understanding of this story goes like this: Israel made a golden calf as an image of YHWH. This concept is 100% false.
Israel made a golden calf as the idol of Satyr, a totally different god. How do we know this? Well, this is the first time in Israel’s history they turned to Satyr (aka, Saturn and Molech). Let’s take a look at the second time Israel accomplished this rebellion.
“And from all their territories the priests and the Levites who were in all Israel took their stand with him. For the Levites left their common lands and their possessions and came to Judah and Jerusalem, for Jeroboam and his sons had rejected them from serving as priests to YHWH. Then he appointed for himself priests for the high places, FOR THE DEMONS (SATYR), and THE CALF IDOLS which he had made. And after the Levites left, those from all the tribes of Israel, such as set their heart to seek The Sovereign YHWH of Israel, came to Jerusalem to sacrifice to The Sovereign YHWH of their fathers. So they strengthened the kingdom of Judah, and made Rehoboam the son of Solomon strong for three years because they walked in the way of David and Solomon for three years.” 2Chronicles 11:13–17
The text above differentiates between what The Kingdom of Judah was doing by rightly worshiping YHWH with the true Priesthood established by YHWH, in Jerusalem, as opposed to what the northern house of Israel was doing by establishing a replacement priesthood which was once again worshiping Satyr via his calf idol, just as all Israel did for a brief period of time in the wilderness after their Exodus from Egypt.
Fast forward roughly 170 years when a second King of Israel called Jeroboam II ruled the same Pseudo-religion of Satyr. The Prophet Amos is reporting on the scene….
“I hate, I despise your feasts, and I take no delight in your solemn assemblies. Even though you offer me your burnt offerings and grain offerings, I will not accept them; and the peace offerings of your fattened animals, I will not look upon them. Take away from me the noise of your songs; to the melody of your harps I will not listen. But let justice roll down like waters, and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream.
“Did you bring to me sacrifices and offerings during the forty years in the wilderness, O house of Israel? You shall take up Sikkuth YOUR KING (Molech), and Kiyyun your star-god (The six-pointed star of Judaism)— your images that you made for yourselves, and I will send you into exile beyond Damascus,” says YHWH, whose name is the Mighty One of hosts. Amos 5:21–27
The King James Version translates verse 26 as follows, inserting the better-known name of this god Satyr.
“But ye have borne the tabernacle of your Moloch and Chiun your images, the star of your god, which ye made to yourselves.” Amos 5:26
Now, with that digression complete. Let’s jump back to the New Testament book of Acts, chapter 7 to address why it was, the disciple Steven was stoned to death.
As chapter 6 of The Acts of the Apostles comes to a close, The Jews of the Day are engaged in a heated debate with Steven concerning the prophecy of Christ’s coming. As chapter 7 opens, Steven drops the hammer of Israel’s history recounting some of their tendencies to disobey the one YHWH established over them, namely Moses, turning to another god, namely Molech. Picking up the story at this point of Steven’s dissertation on Israel’s history…
“Our fathers refused to obey him but thrust him aside, and in their hearts they turned to Egypt, saying to Aaron, ‘Make for us gods who will go before us. As for this Moses who led us out from the land of Egypt, we do not know what has become of him.’ And they made a calf in those days, and offered a sacrifice to the idol and were rejoicing in the works of their hands. But God turned away and gave them over to worship the host of heaven, as it is written in the book of the prophets:
“‘Did you bring to me slain beasts and sacrifices, during the forty years in the wilderness, O house of Israel? You took up the tent of MOLECH and the star of your god Remphan, the images that you made to worship; and I will send you into exile beyond Babylon.’
“Our fathers had the tent of witness in the wilderness, just as he who spoke to Moses directed him to make it, according to the pattern that he had seen. Our fathers in turn brought it in with Joshua when they dispossessed the nations that The Almighty drove out before our fathers. So it was until the days of David, who found favor in the sight of The Almighty and asked to find a dwelling place for the Mighty One of Jacob. But it was Solomon who built a house for him. Yet the Most High does not dwell in houses made by hands, as the prophet says,
“‘Heaven is my throne, and the earth is my footstool. What kind of house will you build for me, says YHWH, or what is the place of my rest? Did not my hand make all these things?’
“You stiff-necked people, uncircumcised in heart and ears, you always resist the Holy Spirit. As your fathers did, so do you. Which of the prophets did your fathers not persecute? And they killed those who announced beforehand the coming of the Righteous One, whom you have now betrayed and murdered, you who received the law as delivered by angels and did not keep it.” Acts 7:39–53
When Steven finishes these words, the Jews rose up to stone him to death. Why? What was it Steven said that caused such rage? The answer is simple. He told them they were worshipping Molech, instead of YHWH.
You took up the tent of MOLECH and the star of your god Remphan,
It must be noted, the god Remphan, was brought directly from Egypt and was in fact the half-goat, half-man God, later known simply as Phan (Fawn) or Pan. This Goat-Demon has always drawn Israel’s worship from their days in slaved to Egypt until even the time of Christ and finally even until today.
Note the following text and its end-time setting. Think critically concerning what is being said here.
“I will stretch out my hand against Judah and against all the inhabitants of JerUSAlem, and I will cut off from this place the remnant of Baal (Sunday Keepers) and the name of the idolatrous priests along with the priests, those who bow down on the roofs to the host of the heavens (Pagans), those who bow down and swear to YHWH and yet (also) swear by Milcom (Molech), those who have turned back from following YHWH, who do not seek YHWH or inquire of him.” Zephaniah 1:4–6
Question for you….. Who are those who bow down and swear to YHWH and yet (also) swear by Milcom (Molech)? Who are those who bow down and oath to YHWH but also swear an oath to Molech at the same time?
Saturday Sabbath Keepers, that’s who. Steven told the Jews of His day the exact same thing and they stoned him because of it.
The debate raged even into Paul’s day. Notice this text.
“One person esteems one day as better than another, while another esteems all days alike. Each one should be fully convinced in his own mind.” Romans 14:5
One person keeps a continual fixed seventh-day Sabbath.
Another person esteems that every day (of the pagan week), can the true weekly Sabbath fall.
You see the true lunar-based sabbath floats through the pagan, papal, Planetary week that was just established at the time Paul wrote his epistle to the Romans, in the early 50’s AD. Thus the debate was ongoing even then.