9 God saved us, and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace. He gave us this grace in King Jesus before all time and ages, 10 but has now made it visible through the appearing of our saviour King Jesus, who abolished death and, through the gospel, shone a bright light on life and immortality. 2 Timothy 1:9-10 NTE
Grace. Grace is not just another doctrine of the Christian Faith. Grace is not just a topical study of God's Word. Grace is not just for the sinner to receive Christ and His free gift.
Grace is the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ. Grace is the person of Jesus manifest on earth demonstrating to us the Father and His great Love, mercy, Goodness, and kindness. Grace is the unearned, undeserved, unmerited favor of Almighty God. Once received, this unearned favor produces a divine influence upon the heart and empowers the believer.
There is therefore nothing we can add to Grace. We can't add our works to His Grace. It's a Finished Work. It's not an incomplete work waiting on our good behavior to be added in order to fully complete it. No human effort, spiritual discipline, or spiritual observance can add to His perfect sacrifice and gift of Grace.
It's not Grace plus something. It is Grace alone from the beginning to eternity. It's not Grace plus Law keeping. It's not Grace plus observing the Sabbath days. It's not Grace plus celebration and observance of Old Covenant feast days. It's Grace alone, through Faith in Jesus' Finished work alone.
With such amazing Good News of the Gospel, we still see leaders and ministers encourage, teach, proclaim, and demand that New Covenant believers keep the Law, observe the Sabbath, and celebrate the feast days. It's as if some have completely ignored Romans, Galatians, Colossians, and the Book Of Acts to proclaim this. It's as if the meeting in Acts 15 never occurred.
Some are claiming there is some special spiritual significance for Christians to observe Jewish customs today, post-cross and resurrection. Some claim that Christians, in order to have a better understanding of their Faith, need to get back to the Jewish roots of the Faith. Some teach that the Sabbath and the festivals and feasts are to be celebrated forever, therefore they are required to be observed by both Jews and believers in Christ alike.
This is nothing new. We saw this clearly addressed in Acts 15. This issue was settled back there. Why are we still discussing and having to address this today? Understand the New Covenant is rooted in Grace and Faith, whereas the Old is rooted in outward acts of obedience to the Law and observing all its ordinances.
Those looking to keep Sabbath days and Celebrate the feast days are walking by sight and not faith. They are saying the shadow is more real and relevant than the substance which is Christ and His Finished Work. That the shadow offers more Revelation and in-depth intimacy than the substance who is Jesus.
They say they are just honoring Israel and the Old Covenant words. If they want to show honor then honor God's New Covenant, which is a Covenant of faith, not sight. To embrace shadows and not the substance is to walk in unbelief.
Under the Old, you could "see" your righteousness by how you kept the holy days, honored the Sabbath, and abstained from forbidden foods. It is not a light thing to God to try to mix the Covenants and to teach the Saints that keeping or honoring or observing holy days, feasts, manners, and customs is honoring God and His Word when the substance has already appeared and fulfilled all the shadows by His redemptive Work. We are to honor the Finished Work and His New Covenant and keep it free from mixture and error.
Now what does the New Covenant declare about keeping the Sabbath and observing and celebrating the holy days and feast days?
Grace is unearned favor. Outward acts such as keeping the Sabbath observing special days, and celebrating the Israeli feasts are a fleshly attempt to earn favor with God. It is telling God we are righteous by our doing and not by Faith alone in Christ's final sacrifice for sin.
If we are celebrating the feasts, we have fallen from Grace. The feasts were instituted by the Father to illustrate the perfect work of our Savior Jesus Christ. Those feasts revealed the coming Messiah, the Lord Jesus Christ. Those feasts illustrate the life, death, perfect sacrifice, and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ, and His triumphant return.
If we still celebrate these feasts, then we are still looking for a Jewish Messiah to come. We are saying He has yet to come, we are also saying He has never come. Therefore in actively celebrating the feasts, we are denying Jesus as the Messiah. If one is observing and celebrating these feasts today, they are denying Jesus and saying they do not believe in Him as being the Anointed One, the Son of God and Son of Man.
Look clearly at Leviticus 23. We can see Jesus in these feasts. Because Jesus fulfilled these types and shadows why do we need to go backward and celebrate them? These Feasts were but shadows of He who was to come. Now that He has come, we have the substance and no longer need the shadows and types.
Again to observe and celebrate the feasts and keep the Sabbath today, we are saying the shadows are greater than the substance, Jesus. We are also saying we are still waiting on divine rest and the completion of the Work. We are saying the Messiah has never come yet and we are still looking for our substitutionary sacrifice to be made. We are denying Jesus and embracing an obsolete ordinance and Covenant.