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Pope Francis, Environment, and Sabbath - Part 2

Pope Francis, Environment, and Sabbath - Part 2

Movie theaters around the country have been showing the documentary Pope Francis: A Man of His Word, which provides a unique perspective on the pope’s views about our world, Scripture, and the Sabbath. While referring to the world as “Mother Earth,” he calls on Christians to take responsibility for improving how we treat the world.

Of course, caring for our environment is an important part of Christian living. God’s Word warns against those who would destroy the earth (Revelation 11:18). His law calls for a weekly Sabbath rest, which helps to remind us that we are stewards, not owners, of this planet.

In his comments about the Sabbath, the pope makes a fascinating transition. He begins by identifying the Sabbath of Creation as the seventh day of the week, but then he states that Christians need not focus on keeping a specific day—but, rather, they can keep any day of the week so long as they are keeping one. He says, “One day of the week, that’s the least! Out of gratitude to worship God, to spend time with the family, to play, to do all these things. We are not machines!”

This switch is subtle, perhaps, but it lays the foundation to make a change from a very specific day in the commandment to a general day chosen arbitrarily—the day that is important in his worldview.

Bible prophecy outlines this attempted transformation of God's law in the book of Daniel: “He shall speak pompous words against the Most High, shall persecute the saints of the Most High, and shall intend to change times and law” (Daniel 7:25). Yet God’s law is the foundation of His government, and Christ’s death on the cross proves the continued validity of His law in our lives. (After all, if the law could simply be changed instead of kept, would there have been any reason for Jesus to die?) Any attempt to change to God’s law challenges His authority as Creator and Ruler of the universe.

This undermining of God’s law, and especially the seventh-day Sabbath, is setting the stage for the final contest between good and evil outlined in Revelation—a war between God’s faithful people and those who follow a leader, a counterfeit Christ, who would lead them away from ultimate truth.

As Christians, we need to remain faithful to the Word of God. Our weekly observance of the Sabbath on the day God set apart as holy at the Creation is a vital part of the work He is doing in our hearts and minds to prepare us to stay resolute and faithful to Him when chaos comes upon the earth in these final days.

Learn more about this important topic by clicking here.

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