The Day That Disappeared

Lesson

8

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In 2012, a remarkable discovery was made. For many years, Sandy Island was shown on maps of the South Pacifc. It was a small island located west of New Caledonia, a little over midway between New Zealand and Australia. But cartographers received a surprise when they looked at satellite images of the area and discovered Sandy Island wasn’t there!
Bewildered scientists sailed to the area, and instead of Sandy Island, they found only water. The truth was that in spite of maps saying otherwise for decades, Sandy Island didn’t exist—and never had! Even though it appeared on maps— even though it was believed to be there—Sandy Island wasn’t real.
How many other things are like that? Most “old wives’ tales” are harmless, but could it be possible that a commonly held belief within the Christian church simply isn’t true? Could Christians believe in something that simply doesn’t exist?
 

 
Hint

James made it clear in James 2:10–12 that the law he is referring to is the Ten Commandments. God wants His children to lovingly obey Him.
What motivates a believer in Jesus to want to obey God and keep His commandments?

If you ___________ Me, keep My commandments.
Hint

Love for God is the primary motivator when it comes to living a life of obedience to God. One may want to go to heaven or avoid being lost, but the greatest and most effective motivation to keep God’s commandments is love for God.
How important is it to God that we keep His commandments?

One who turns away his ear from hearing the law, even his prayer is an __________________________.
Hint

While God is certainly willing to forgive us when we fall into sin (1 John 1:9), and although Jesus is our Advocate in heaven (1 John 2:1), an attitude of willful turning away from obedience to God cannot meet with God’s approval.
Hint

When we surrender our lives to Jesus, He lives His life in us, bringing His power and His holiness into our lives. We obey God by allowing Jesus to live His life in us, and by cooperating with Him when He does so.
Which of the Ten Commandments is a special sign between God and His people?

I also gave them My __________________, to be a sign between them and Me, that they might know that I am the Lord who sanctifies them.
Hint

The seventh-day Sabbath is the sign God gave His children so they would know He is able to re-create them in His image. The Sabbath is a sign of God’s creative power—the power He exercised at creation, and the power He exercises when He remakes a human heart.
Did God intend for Christians to keep the Sabbath after Jesus died on the cross?

Pray that your flight may not be in winter or on the ________________.
Hint

Looking ahead to the destruction of Jerusalem—which happened four decades after Jesus’ death, in AD 70—Jesus encouraged His people to pray they would not have to flee on the Sabbath day. Jesus could not have made it clearer that the Sabbath would still be important to His people long after He died on the cross.
Hint

This is not due to any reason found in the Bible. Sunday observance is not mandated in the Bible, and it was never given to the human family by God as a day to keep holy. Nowhere does the Bible suggest that we should keep Sunday holy! The first day of the week—Sunday—is mentioned infrequently in the New Testament.
Each of these texts mentions the first day of the week, but never do they suggest that Sunday was to be recognized as a day of rest or worship.
Hint

The only reason the disciples were assembling on the first day of the week was because they feared the Jews in the wake of the death of Jesus.
Now on the first day of the week, when the disciples came together to break bread, Paul, ready to depart the next day, spoke to them and continued his message until ___________________. There were many lamps in the upper room where they were gathered together.
Hint

Paul was preaching on the first day of the week. Biblically speaking, a day starts and ends at sunset. (Leviticus 23:32; Mark 1:32) Therefore, Paul— preaching on the dark part of the first day of the week—was preaching on Saturday night. (Sunday night would have been the second day of the week.) The fact that Paul was preaching on the first day of the week did not make that day a holy day.
Now concerning the collection for the saints, as I have given orders to the churches of Galatia, so you must do also: On the first day of the week let each one of you lay something ____________, storing up as he may prosper, that there be no collections when I come.
Hint

Paul urged the believers to set money aside—at home—on the first day of each week, so that when he sent a messenger to Corinth to collect this offering for believers in Jerusalem, there would be no cause for delay. This setting aside of money on the first day of the week did not mean that day was considered holy.
Hint

Rather than Sunday observance, God gave the church the rite of baptism to commemorate the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus. The Lord’s Supper—or the communion service—was also given by God to His people so they could regularly commemorate the death of Jesus. Nowhere in the Bible is Sunday referred to as any sort of memorial of the resurrection of Jesus.
Hint

Many years after Jesus died, the apostles were observing the Sabbath on the seventh day of the week. They made no change to their weekly Sabbath observance.
On the Sabbath day we went out of the city to the riverside, where _______________ was customarily made; and we sat down and spoke to the women who met there.
Hint

When there was no synagogue in which to worship, the Sabbath was still observed, with worship services sometimes being held outdoors. The early Christians did not keep the Sabbath simply because of Jewish customs. They kept all of God’s commandments out of love for Him.
Hint

Even Gentile believers worshiped on the Sabbath day. If the Sabbath had been changed, these believers would have come together to hear the Word of God on Sunday.
What does the Bible counsel in situations where the Word of God and the customs of the church or society seem to be in conflict?

Peter and the other apostles answered and said: “We ought to obey _________ rather than __________.”
Hint

The Bible is clear that whenever a person has a choice between God’s Word and the teachings of humans, it is the Bible we should yield to out of love for God.
What did Jesus say about the concept of replacing divine commandments with human enactments?
In ___________ they worship Me, teaching as doctrines the ______________________________ of men.
Hint

A follower of Jesus is a follower of the Word of God. Saved Christians motivated by love for God will keep God’s commandments. They will say with David, “I delight to do Your will, O my God, and Your law is within my heart.” (Psalm 40:8)
Does the Bible give clear guidelines when it comes to worship?

God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in _______________ and ______________.
Hint


Are you willing to worship God in spirit and truth, and observe the seventh-day Sabbath of the Bible?