Does Isaiah 66:17, 22, 23 show we must follow the Law in the end times?

There are some who believe that Isaiah 66:17, 22, 23 are evidence that everyone will follow the Mosaic (dietary and Sabbath) laws in the end times.

Chapter 66 is essentially a restatement of chapter 65.
In Isaiah 65:1-16, God condemns rebellious Israelites. He will repay them based upon what they did. God called, but they did not answer.
But we see in Isaiah 65:17-25 that God will create a new heaven and new earth. where people will not sorrow. They will do no evil or harm.

Then in Isaiah 66:2, we see that God will pay attention to those who are humble and who fear God.

2 “For My hand made all these things, Thus all these things came into being,” declares the LORD. “But to this one I will look, To him who is humble and contrite of spirit, and who trembles at My word.

But Isaiah 66:3-4 tells that those who do what God has decreed but who do not have the right spirit will be considered hypocrites, as if they broke what was the law in place at that time. They have chosen their own ways. God called, but they did not respond.

3 “But he who kills an ox is like one who slays a man ; He who sacrifices a lamb is like the one who breaks a dog’s neck ; He who offers a grain offering is like one who offers swine’s blood ; He who burns incense is like the one who blesses an idol. As they have chosen their own ways, And their soul delights in their abominations, 4 So I will choose their punishments And will bring on them what they dread. Because I called, but no one answered ; I spoke, but they did not listen. And they did evil in My sight And chose that in which I did not delight.”

In the same way, those who sanctify and purify themselves then follow a strange god will be judged. In verse 17, the idea of following the one in the center is thought to be following a an idol, or sacrificing to an idol.
Isaiah 66:17

17″Those who sanctify and purify themselves to go to the gardens, Following one in the center, Who eat swine’s flesh, detestable things and mice, Will come to an end altogether,” declares the LORD.

We see in Isaiah 66:21 that God will take some to be Levites. Yet, we know the Levitical priesthood has been changed to the Melchizedek Order (Hebrews 5:6; Hebrews 7:11-19). God will have no need for Levitical priests, because the high priest is not human, but is Christ (Hebrews 3:1). Since this is the case, God must be speaking in poetical language and not literally. So no, Isaiah 66:23 does not refer to a literal sabbath (Saturday) worship, but this indicates God’s people will worship Him in truth rather than hypocritically – as we see in Isaiah 66:3-4.

A reminder that the Levitical priesthood has been replaced – Christ is our high priest:

Hebrews 7:11-19

11 Now if perfection was through the Levitical priesthood (for on the basis of it the people received the Law ), what further need was there for another priest to arise according to the order of Melchizedek, and not be designated according to the order of Aaron ? 12 For when the priesthood is changed, of necessity theretakes place a change of law also. 13 For the one concerning whom these things arespoken belongs to another tribe, from which no one has officiated at the altar. 14 For it isevident that our Lord was descended from Judah, a tribe with reference to which Mosesspoke nothing concerning priests. 15 And this is clearer still, if another priest arises according to the likeness of Melchizedek, 16 who has become such not on the basis of a law of physical requirement, but according to the power of an indestructible life. 17 For it is attested of Him, “YOU ARE A PRIEST FOREVER ACCORDING TO THE ORDER OFMELCHIZEDEK.” 18 For, on the one hand, there is a setting aside of a former commandment because of its weakness and uselessness 19 (for the Law made nothing perfect ), and on the other hand there is a bringing in of a better hope, through which we draw near to God.

So no. Isaiah 66 does not show that people will be following the Mosaic Law in the end times.


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