Observing the Sabbath


To come to a scriptural and intellectually unbiased conclusion on this subject, we must address these five questions:
  1. What does the Old Testament teach about keeping the Sabbath?
  2. What did Jesus Christ teach about keeping the Sabbath?
  3. How did the first century Church address the Sabbath?
  4. Where did Sunday worship originate?
  5. What should our attitude be about keeping Sabbath?

1. What does the Old Testament teach about keeping the Sabbath?

It is obvious that our Lord God took the Sabbath very serious. So important was it's observation that the violation thereof meant certain death.

2. What did Jesus Christ teach about keeping the Sabbath?

Notice that Jesus Himself kept the Sabbath. Also, He never condemned anyone for the act of keeping the Sabbath. And, He never announced the cessation of the Sabbath. Again, Jesus doesn't condemn the Sabbath. Rather, He reinforces it by defining it's purpose: Sabbath was created to be a blessing to man; it;s a day of doing good and enjoying God's blessings.

3. How did the first century Church address the Sabbath?

Where was St. Paul on the Sabbath? Whether in the synagog or by the river, He was "at church". This is the favorite verse of those who wish to justify their tradition of Sunday worship. However, instead of negating the Sabbath, Paul was condemning those who try to establish their righteousness through the religious observance of the Sabbath.

4. Where did Sunday worship originate?

These are the only verses in the New Testament which teach Sunday worship...or do they? Let's take a look at the first part of Acts 20:7 "On the first day of the week". The Greek text reads: kata mian sabbatou, which means literally "upon first of week". The phrase can be correctly translated as either upon the first of the week or upon the first Sabbath. But, that is not the point. The point is that in this passage of scripture, Paul is leaving the next day, so Saturday or Sunday, this was the last opportunity he would have to fellowship with his brothers and sisters at Troas.

Now, let's look at the first part of I Cor 16:2 "On the first day of every week". The Greek text reads: En de ta mia ton sabbaton, which means literally "And on the first of the weeks (or Sabbaths)". This phrase can be correctly translated only as On the first Sabbath.

Let us read from several Roman Catholic publications for further insight...

From the preceeding passages, we see that Sunday worship is purely the invention of the Roman Catholic church, perpitrated in conscious rebellion against the express commands of Scripture.

5. What should our attitude be about keeping Sabbath?

You decide!

How to keep the Sabbath
A Practical Application