SALVATION AND THE SPECIAL OBSERVANCES

Many ask if the keeping of the Sabbath, New Moons, and the annual observances is required for salvation. In this age just prior  to the return of Jesus Christ, the answer to this question   depends on the person doing the asking and on an individual's  understanding of God's word.

Before answering this question, it is important to determine the Biblical definition of a Christian:

A Christian is any person who has experienced the following:

As  a  result of having experienced all of these  things,  one should have a  compelling desire to obey God, especially when one is  shown the truth.   But, to say that one is not a  Christian,  because  one does not understand or keep the annual observances is to make a judgment that only God has the prerogative to make.  

There  is  absolute proof that God the Father  and  Jesus  Christ want those who have the holy spirit to practice all of the laws of God that apply under his agreement with them (Deut.30:15-19).

There  is also absolute proof that God will destroy those who  do not obey his way of life (1.Jn.3:4), and he will reward those who seek  and obey him (Matt.19:16-17; Heb.11:16).  God is  extremely fair,  just, and merciful with his creation, but he does  require obedience:

"Therefore to him that knows to do good,  and does not do it, to him it is sin" (Jms.4:17 Para.).

Herein lies a basic spiritual  principle:  if  a person knows what is good and righteous but chooses that which  is ungodly and evil, sin is imputed to  that  person and the wages of sin is death (Rom.6:23).  

Jesus said that those who profess to be in obedience to God  and his way of life but are not, are hypocrites:

"You  hypocrites, well did Isaiah prophecy of you,  saying,  This people draws near to me with their mouth, and honor me with their lips; but their heart is far from me. But in vain do they worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men"  (Matt.15:7-8 KJV).

"Why  call  me, Lord, Lord, when you do not do the things that I  say?" (Lk.6:46 Para.).

By these and many others scriptures, we can be sure that God does require  those  who are truly his children to obey his  law, which includes observing his special days.

Three Important Questions

The  answer to the question of whether or not a person  must  observe  these special observances to obtain salvation can  be  answered by asking oneself the following three questions:

1. Do  I understand what these observances are  and  what  they   symbolize?

2. Do I understand that God commands these days to be  observed?

3. Do I understand  that to willfully  disobey God's law is  sin, which is punishable by eternal death if I  do not repent?

God  the Father only judges us for what we know  and  understand.  He  will not condemn us for what we do not know  or   understand.  God looks at the heart and intent of a person's actions.  If the answer  to any of the above questions is yes, it  is very likely  that  the observance of these days is a  requirement  for one's salvation.

Salvation is an individual matter.  It is between each  individual,  God  the Father, and Jesus Christ. It is not between  one individual  and another or a physical organization.  Your salvation is your responsibility (Phil.2:12). Each individual  is held  personally responsible for their own  decisions concerning their  personal relationship with God and each person is  judged according  to the spiritual knowledge that they possess and  what they do with it.

For those who have been given the holy spirit and still do not understand  the meaning of these special observances  and the necessity for their observance, these observances are not yet required for their salvation, but only because they do not  understand.

A DEADLY MISTAKE

A deadly mistake is being made by some whom God has called.  Some still do not understand that once spiritual knowledge is given to an individual, it must be acted upon in a positive manner by  the recipient. They are deliberately disobeying him by not  observing these special days.  God  the Father and Jesus Christ are extremely serious about  our salvation.  They are so serious that they have placed the  powers of  the  universe at the disposal of those who are  truly  called during this age.

The  calling to salvation is not a game to be taken lightly.   It is  a  life and death matter.  Anyone who is unwilling  to  obey God's  rules of conduct will not obtain immortality.  For  those  who obey, there is the gift of salvation and immortality. For  those who do not obey, there is dishonor and death.  God will not be mocked.

Those who wish to destroy the law will be destroyed by it.  Those who  say  that these observances are surely not for  modern  man, should  remember that God says he is the same  yesterday,  today, and forever  (Heb.1:12; 13:8; Rev.21:7-8).

Do you desire eternal life, or do you want death?  The choice is yours. You alone can answer this question.

By B. L. Cocherell, file b5w75