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Candid Quote

February 28, 2010

An interesting comment on the Sabbath by Dr. R. Scott Clark of Westminster Seminary California.  He’s also a Reformed pastor:

Many Christians today regard the Sabbath as an optional part of the law. They so associate it with the Mosaic law that they assume that when the fading, obsolete, Mosaic covenant was fulfilled that the 4th commandment was annulled. I used to think that. Of course I was wrong because I had not understood yet that the moral law is grounded in the divine nature, which does not change, and that the moral law was first given in creation and that the sabbath pattern was established in creation, not in Moses or the old covenant.

Most of us still are practical nine-commandment Christians, even when we profess adherence to the Sabbath in principle. I’m certainly guilty of this. I do things on the sabbath that are not sabbatical, i.e., which doe not really breathe the spirit of the Sabbath, of resting, worshipping, and anticipating glory. That’s sin and I’m a sinner.

Original quote found here:

I’m quoting this to highlight the fact that there are Christians who worship on Sunday that still affirm the Law of God (10 Commandments).  Where we differ is on the day which we view as sacred, but that’s for another post.

18 Comments leave one →
  1. February 28, 2010 12:36 pm

    Of course, you fail to mention that Dr. Clark worships on Sunday.

    And you seem to think that I don’t believe in a Sabbath. I do, it’s on Sunday, the Lord’s Day.

    But even if Dr. Clark shared the SDA view, what would that prove? Absolutely nothing.

    • February 28, 2010 12:43 pm

      Obviously I knew he was worshiping on Sunday, Reformed pastor.

      See now you’re contradicting yourself. You were arguing the whole time that we are no longer under the LAW, and it was abolished. That there is no Sabbath requirement. Now you believe the Sabbath is binding?

      Getting mixed up are we? Your argument isn’t holding water anymore buddy.

      • February 28, 2010 1:03 pm

        Care to quote me? I’ve never argues that the law was abolished. Not once. I don’t think you’ve been paying attention.

  2. February 28, 2010 1:06 pm

    These are your words Daniel:

    “What is remarkable is that the Sabbath is no longer a binding commitment for Paul but a matter of one’s personal conviction. Unlike the other nine commandments in Ex. 20:1–17, the Sabbath commandment seems to have been part of the “ceremonial laws” of the Mosaic covenant, like the dietary laws and the laws about sacrifices, all of which are no longer binding on new covenant believers (see also Gal. 4:10; Col. 2:16–17). However, it is still wise to take regular times of rest from work, and regular times of worship are commanded for Christians (Heb. 10:24–25; cf. Acts 20:7).” [emphasis mine]

    “The old covenant observances pointed to a future reality that was fulfilled in Christ (cf. Heb. 10:1). Hence, Christians are no longer under the Mosaic covenant (cf. Rom. 6:14–15; 7:1–6; 2 Cor. 3:4–18; Gal. 3:15–4:7). Christians are no longer obligated to observe OT dietary laws (“food and drink”) or festivals, holidays, and special days (“a festival…new moon…Sabbath,”), for what these things foreshadowed has been fulfilled in Christ.”

    You were arguing that Christians no longer need to observe the Sabbath. Now you do a complete 180. When you spin a web of mistruth, your story will eventually get tangled bro.

    • February 28, 2010 4:24 pm

      After all this you still don’t even know what my position is. When I say “sabbath” I am referring, almost exclusively, to the Jewish Sabbath – Saturday. Perhaps I wasn’t clear enough or perhaps you just didn’t catch the difference.

      From the beginning, I’ve argued that Christians are not bound by the Jewish Sabbath; that is, the Saturday Sabbath.

      • February 28, 2010 4:59 pm

        Sigh… show me in the Bible where it says Sunday is the Sabbath.

  3. February 28, 2010 4:26 pm

    For those interested in authorial intent and not Glenn assigning meaning, here is an email that I received from Dr. Clark:

    Hi Daniel,

    This is shocking. I can’t see how anyone who’s paid the least bit of attention to what I’ve written or taught on this could possibly think that I agree with the error of the Saturday Sabbath. I spent a better part of a chapter in Recovering the Reformed Confession refuting the error of the Saturday Sabbath. With Calvin and all the Reformed churches I heartily reject the Anabaptist error of the Saturday Sabbath as not taking account of the resurrection and the inauguration of the new creation that accompanies the resurrection. God could have sent no clearer signal that the inauguration of the new creation has begun and that with it a new Sabbath has been instituted than by raising his Son from the dead on the first day of the new week.

    See Recovering the Reformed Confession where I discuss this at length.

    See also this lecture on the Sabbath:

    There is a little bit on it here:

    See also this:

    If these folk bothered to read the Westminster Confession of Faith or the Heidelberg Catechism they would see that, as a Reformed Christian, I’m committed to the historic Christian doctrine of the Sabbath.

    You’re welcome to publish this widely. I’ll post it on the HB.



    R. Scott Clark, D.Phil.
    Westminster Seminary California

    • February 28, 2010 5:00 pm

      Yes, I realize he believes the Sabbath is Sunday. My intention of using the quote was to show your belief that we are no longer under the Law of God (10 Commandments) is wrong.

  4. February 28, 2010 5:45 pm

    Sabbath has always meant merely “to rest from labor.” Restriction to one specific day was never commanded. Jews observed it on Saturday and Christians observe it on Sunday – the Lord’s day.

    • February 28, 2010 6:30 pm

      Like I’ve asked you before, show me where in the Bible that Sunday is the Sabbath? If you strictly rely on the Bible, The Sabbath is the true Lord’s Day, Jesus is Lord of the Sabbath. Jesus, Paul, Apostles, followers all kept the seventh-day Sabbath.

      Aside from the 2 “1st day” texts you’ve provided, and which I’ve shown you isn’t necessarily a “worship” service, there is no solid proof for Sunday being the Lord’s day.

  5. Victoria permalink
    March 1, 2010 2:06 pm

    I thought Daniel was arguing we aren’t under the law anymore. That was my impression of his Romans 14 posts, that Christians aren’t bound to one day. Now he’s saying the Sabbath is valid, but is now Sunday? Looks like someone is confused.

    • March 1, 2010 5:19 pm

      He was. Did a 180 apparently.

    • March 1, 2010 9:21 pm


      Go back and reread my Romans 14 exegesis (haven’t heard back from Glenn, though). You’ll notice that I make it very, very clear that Paul is admonishing both the “weak” and the “strong” for criticizing the other. The NT is explicit that Christians ARE NOT under the law, I’ve never said otherwise. The Sabbath, like marriage, however, is rooted in creation, not the Mosaic covenant. We are to take one day out of the week (work 6, rest 1) to rest from our work. Be that any day of the week, it matters not. The reason I advocate Sunday is because that is the Biblical and historical day for Christians despite what Glenn so desperately wants others to believe.

      I don’t care when you rest but it is a sin to mandate one day over against another. If Glenn paid just half as much attention to what I’ve actually written as he does to the “inspired” Mrs. White, he would see the truth.


      • March 1, 2010 9:23 pm

        Oh, and before Glenn misunderstands me again, when I say that Christians are not under the law, that does not mean that the law was abolished.

      • March 2, 2010 10:03 am

        Daniel, do you and Matt Paulsen have the same views? I’m assuming you do, since you both work with CARM.
        I can quote some of his emails to me, claiming the Law was abolished too if you like? To me, it looks like you’re conveniently changing your story on the fly.

        “I don’t care when you rest but it is a sin to mandate one day over against another.”

        It’s a sin? Where? What is sin Daniel, the transgression of the law no? So if it’s a sin, it must be in a Law. Yet you say,

        “The NT is explicit that Christians ARE NOT under the law, I’ve never said otherwise.”

        You’re contradicting yourself dude. Then you say:

        “The Sabbath, like marriage, however, is rooted in creation, not the Mosaic covenant.”

        Exactly, you make the point for me, the seventh-day Sabbath has always been in existence. God doesn’t change, so why would he change it to the first day? Unlike the 4th commandment, there is no EXPLICIT evidence stating such claim for sunday observance.

        Daniel, you’re probably right that I don’t understand your position and you can’t blame me, you don’t even understand where you stand yourself. Seems to me you’re confusing 2 types of theologies.

  6. March 2, 2010 10:36 am


    Isn’t the simplest answer the best one?

    What you’re trying to do is prove a position (Sunday=Sabbath) by going off in tangents and complicated formulas, using calculus and derivatives to prove your point, when all that is really needed is simple arithmetic.

    God instituted the Sabbath (seventh-day) at creation. He blessed the seventh-day, (Gen 2:2-3) not any other day, and commanded all human kind to remember and observe it in the heart of the 10 commandments. It can be summed up in this simple math:

    God + blessing + seventh-day = Sabbath

    When you take away the seventh day from the equation, its not the Sabbath. Sunday is not the Sabbath. You can call it whatever you like, the fact is, God didn’t set aside that Sunday as holy and special (sanctified).

    That’s the simple truth. God is calling you to keep ALL (10) of his commandments. You know Satan works by making counterfeits and distorting God’s institutions. Counterfeit gods (idols), counterfeit prayers (see Catholic prayers with vain repetitions), distorts the institution of marriage (same-sex, common-law, etc) and pushes people to break every one of his commandments (murder, theft, adultery, envy, etc.) Isn’t it possible he also created a counterfeit Sabbath, it’s similar to the original but not. A day where the god of the sun [Satan] (ancient Egyptian, Babylonian, pagan civilizations, all worshiped the sun) is indirectly worshiped? Think about it. Most Christians don’t know about this deception, and that’s the whole point of the 3 angels message of Revelation 14. Calling all believers to worship the God of the Sabbath.

    Even lets pretend that I’m wrong, and we are free to worship on ANY day. I’d rather take my chances on the Sabbath as it is biblically sound, than on Sunday.

  7. December 30, 2011 12:15 am

    Hi Glenn, the link to the orignial quote isn’t working!

    Here’s a list of similar authors/scholars that identifiy the validity of the ten commandments – the law of self sacrificing love as binding for new covenant christians. Ofcourse they believe that sunday was chosen by apostles as the Lord’s say and hence don’t consider the 7th day sabbath as necessary, but they have no issue with the sabbatarians:

    • January 5, 2012 10:29 am

      Hi John,

      Dr. Clark took down his blog for some reason unknown to me. This guy speculates as to some reasons:

      I can assure you that the quote is real, and the link worked at the time it was written. I do have some email correspondence with Dr. Clark as well.

      Thanks for the link. Those are some good resources as well.

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