One thing about the Bible is that the important things that we are really supposed to get are always in it more than once. This is the case because when the Bible was written, there was NO punctuation, so the authors could not use an exclamation point to suggest that something was important. The Sabbath day is mentioned no less than 60 times throughout the Bible, and each instance confirms in some way that this day is Holy, set apart, given for man, everlasting. Since the beginning of time YHWH himself rested on the seventh day (Genesis 2:2), every man that walked the earth was instructed to keep the seventh day Sabbath holy, all the people in the OT observed the seventh day as the Sabbath, Y’shua and his disciples kept and observed the seventh day Sabbath (Luke 4:16). After the ascension of Y’shua, the disciples continued to observe the Sabbath on the seventh day, and they taught new converts to the faith to keep and honor the seventh day Sabbath (Acts 17:2-3). The first-century church observed the Sabbath on the seventh day (Acts 13:13-14, Acts 16:13, Acts 17:2). Then at some point hundreds of years after the disciples, it changed.
The Sabbath was changed from Saturday to Sunday, a change that the Roman Catholic Church claims they were given the authority to make. Many people today feel that the Sabbath day is Sunday instead of Saturday or that they are free to choose any day to be their Sabbath day. Let’s break down the scriptures that people use to say that the seventh day Sabbath is no longer binding on the believer today.
Romans chapter 14 is often used to suggest that the Sabbath has been changed, but in reality, it is all about weak believers and strong believers debating over what days to FAST on. It does not in any way change the Sabbath day and in fact, is not even talking about the Sabbath. Paul is not teaching, as many believe, that it does not matter what day the Sabbath was observed on. The issue at hand was what day to set aside for fasting. Paul is saying that in matters of moral and doctrinal indifference, we must avoid binding our views on others. He teaches the strong believers to not condemn the weak and that they should not do things that could offend the weaker brother and cause them to backslide. He teaches the weak believers the truth and urges them to forsake their unfounded views. Romans 14 is not teaching that each person may observe the Sabbath day on any day they see fit.
Colossians 2 is very similar to Romans 14. Again, Paul is not saying that we are free to worship God in any way we see fit. If you just read verse 16, it seems like that is the case, but you have to look at it in context. There were false teachers in Colossae that were trying to get the new believers to revert to pagan ways; Paul is simply telling them “Look, Yeshua died for you. He took the penalty for your sin and put it on his shoulders, so do not let men discourage you from keeping God’s seventh day Sabbath and keeping his Feast Days and not eating unclean animals. These people are trying to confuse you and get you to question your faith. They tell you that you should worship angels and to submit to the ways of the world, but you don’t belong to the world, you belong to YHWH, so don’t submit to the ways of the world but submit to YHWH.” Again, these verses in NO way tell us that we are no longer commanded to observe the seventh day Sabbath.
If in fact, the seventh day Sabbath was done away with and we were now free to make any day we choose a Sabbath to YHWH there would be really hard evidence of that found in the scriptures. A couple of verses by one author that do not say that the seventh day Sabbath was changed but instead are interpreted to mean that it changed are not proof at all. Verse plucking and taking scripture out of context has resulted in many doctrines that are just NOT biblical.
There is no biblical authority from Genesis to Revelations to support the changing of the Sabbath day to Sunday; however below there are numerous quotes from the Roman Catholic Church taking credit for the change.
The Convert’s Catechism of Catholic Doctrine (1957): 50:
Q. Which is the Sabbath day?
A. Saturday is the Sabbath day.
Q. Why Do we observe Sunday instead of Saturday?
A. We observe Sunday instead of Saturday because the Catholic Church transferred the solemnity from Saturday to Sunday.
Chancellor Albert Smith for Cardinal of Baltimore Archdiocese, letter dated February 10, 1920:
If Protestants would follow the Bible, they should worship God on the Sabbath day by God is Saturday. In keeping the Sunday, they are following a law of the Catholic Church.
Stephen Keenan, Catholic—Doctrinal Catechism 3rd Edition: 174:
Question: Have you any other way of proving the Church has power to institute festivals of precept?
Answer: Had she not such power, she could not have done that in which all modern religionists agree with her, she could not have substituted the observance of Sunday the 1st day of the week, for the observance of Saturday the 7th day, a change for which there is no Scriptural authority.
The Catholic Mirror (September 23, 1893):
The Catholic Church, for over one thousand years before the existence of a Protestant, by virtue of her divine mission, changed the day from Saturday to Sunday…
The Adventists are the only body of Christians with the Bible as their teacher, who can find no warrant in its pages for the change of day from the seventh to the first. Hence their appellation, “Seventh-day Adventists.”
Catholic Priest T. Enright, CSSR, Kansas City, MO:
It was the holy Catholic Church that changed the day of rest from Saturday to Sunday, the 1st day of the week. And it not only compelled all to keep Sunday, but at the Council of Laodicea, AD 364, anathematized those who kept the Sabbath and urged all persons to labor on the 7th day under penalty of anathema.
Catholic Priest T. Enright, CSSR, lecture at Hartford, KS, Feb 18, 1884:
I have repeatedly offered $1000 to anyone who can furnish any proof from the Bible that Sunday is the day we are bound to keep…The Bible says, “Remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy,” but the Catholic Church says, “No, keep the first day of the week,” and the whole world bows in obedience.
Catholic Record (September 1, 1923):
Sunday is our mark of authority…The [catholic] Church is above the Bible, and this transference of the Sabbath observance is proof of that fact.
American Catholic Quarterly Review (January 1883):
Sunday…is purely a creation of the Catholic Church.
Catholic American Sentinel (June 1893):
Sunday…It is a law of the Catholic Church alone…
S.C. Mosna, Storia della Domenica (1969): 366-367:
Not the Creator of the Universe in Genesis 2:1-3, but the Catholic Church “can claim the honor of having granted man a pause to his work every seven days.”
“The Question Box,” The Catholic Universe Bulletin (August 14, 1942): 4:
The (Catholic) Church changed the observance of the Sabbath to Sunday by right of the divine, infallible authority given to her by her Founder, Jesus Christ. The Protestant claiming the Bible to be the only guide of faith has no warrant for observing Sunday. In this matter, the Seventh-day Adventist is the only consistent Protestant.
Arthur Weigall, The Paganism in Our Christianity (New York: Putnam’s Sons, 1928): 145:
The Church made a sacred day of Sunday…largely because it was the weekly festival of the sun; for it was a definite Christian policy to take over the pagan festivals endeared to the people by tradition, and to give them a Christian significance.
John A. O’Brien, The Faith of Millions: the Credentials of the Catholic Religion Revised Edition (Our Sunday Visitor Publishing, 1974): 400-401:
But since Saturday, not Sunday, is specified in the Bible, isn’t it curious that non-Catholics, who claim to take their religion directly from the Bible and not from the Church, observe Sunday instead of Saturday? Yes, of course, it is inconsistent, but this change was made about fifteen centuries before Protestantism was born, and by that time the custom was universally observed. They have continued the custom even though it rests upon the authority of the Catholic Church and not upon and explicit text in the Bible. That observance remains as a reminder of the Mother Church from which the non-Catholic sects broke away—like a boy running away from home but still carrying in his pocket a picture of his mother or a lock of her hair.
It should be noted that further research will show that Sunday worship was happening well before the formation of the modern Catholic Church. However, these claims of changing YHWH’s Sabbath day are nothing short of heretical. We shouldn’t be surprised; this change is prophesied in Daniel 7.
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