Answers - How Did Sunday Replace God's Sabbath

Updated: Jan 11

The following is one of a number of short articles on this site from the tabloid "Answers" Martin Simpson was working on prior to his passing. Much of Daniel and Revelation is also from his compilation with slight editing in places. Martin passed away on 03/12/2016 in the Wairarapa, New Zealand. RIP Elias


GOD said, “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy” (Exo. 20:8-11) but ‘the

Church’ forgot. Given the blessing and significance of the Lord’s seventh day Sabbath, it is unfortunate that most have forgotten it. Today many think that Sunday, the first day of the

week, is the Sabbath.  How did this happen? In the first centuries the true Sabbath had been kept by all Christians. Satan worked with subtlety to draw attention to Sunday. Sunday was made a celebration in honour of Christ’s resurrection while the seventh day, which had come to be associated with unbiblical Jewish rules, was regarded with contempt as a Jewish institution. In order to show a hatred of Judaism, the seventh day was made a fast day, a day of gloom and sadness, while Christians enjoyed Sunday.


In AD321 the Roman Emperor Constantine, who had ‘converted’ to Christianity, made resting on Sunday a civil law throughout the empire, his aim being to unite pagan Sun-worshippers and Sunday-keeping Christians. The bishops saw this as useful for helping pagans convert to Christianity and increasing the power and glory of the church. Not until some years later, however, did Sunday fully replace the Sabbath in the minds of many, when the Roman church claimed to have changed the Sabbath to Sunday, making it a religious law. The Roman Church then used the civil powers to punish those who kept the Lord’s seventh-day Sabbath.


“Christians must not judaize by resting on the Sabbath, but must work on that day, rather honoring the Lord’s Day [Sunday]; and, if they can, resting then as Christians. But if any shall be found to be judaizers, let them be anathema from Christ.” A History of the Councils of the Church, p. 316.


The great apostate had succeeded in exalting himself above all that is called God. (2Thess. 2:4). Hehad dared to change the one precept of the Divine law that identifies the true and living God. Those who held the Bible as the only rule of faith, were forced to flee into the wilderness. There, for over a thousand years, the truth was maintained. In those Dark Ages Bibles were few, and the Roman Church made owning or reading the Bible illegal. In such darkness the seventh-day Sabbath was almost wholly lost sight of, and the first day of the week took its place. http://biblelight.net/banned.htm.


Roman Catholics openly admit that Sunday is not biblical, as do other churces (See side column). The Roman Catholic Church observes Sunday because they claim to have changed

the Bible Sabbath to Sunday:


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, in the Council of Laodicea [in the fourth century] transferred the solemnity from Saturday to Sunday.” The Convert’s Catechism of Catholic Doctrine, Rev. Peter Geiermann, C.SS.R., (1946), p. 50.


"Question: Have you any other way of proving that 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 first day of the week, for the observance of Saturday the seventh day, a change for which there is no Scriptural authority.’” 


Stephen Keenan, A Doctrinal Catechism, approved by the Most Reverend John Hughes, D. D., Archbishop of New York (New York: Edward Dunigan & Brother, 1851), p. 174.

CHURCH CONFESSIONS

No Biblical support for Sunday


Baptist: “There is no scriptural evidence of the change of the Sabbath institution from the seventh to the first day of the week.” Dr. Edward T. Hiscox, author of The Baptist Manual, in a paper read before a New York ministers’ conference held Nov. 13, 1893.

Lutheran: “The observance of the Lord's day [Sunday] is founded not on any command of God, but on the authority of the church.” Augsburg Confession of Faith, quoted in Catholic Sabbath Manual, Part 2, Chapter 1, Section 10.

Methodist: “Take the matter of Sunday...there is no passage telling Christians to keep that day, or to transfer the Jewish Sabbath to that day.” Harris Franklin Rall, Christian Advocate, July 2, 1942.

Congregationalist: “The Christian Sabbath [Sunday] is not in the Scriptures, and was not by the primitive church called the Sabbath.” Dwight's Theology, Vol. 4, p. 401.

Episcopal: “Sunday... No regulations for its observance are laid down in the New Testament, nor, indeed, is its observance even enjoined.” “Sunday,” A Religious Encyclopedia, Vol. 3, (New York, Funk and Wagnalls, 1883) p. 2259.

Moody Bible Institute: “The Sabbath was binding in Eden, and it has been in force ever since. This fourth commandment begins with the word ‘remember,’ showing that the Sabbath already existed when God wrote the law on the tables of stone at Sinai. How can men claim that this one commandment has been done away with when they will admit that the other nine are still binding?” D. L. Moody, Weighed and Wanting, p. 47.

Presbyterian: “Until, therefore, it can be shown that the whole moral law has been repealed, the Sabbath will stand. ... The teaching of Christ confirms the perpetuity of the Sabbath.” T. C. Blake, D.D., Theology Condensed, pp. 474, 475.

Pentecostal: “’Why do we worship on Sunday? Doesn't the Bible teach us that Saturday should be the Lord's Day?’ ... Apparently we will have to seek the answer from some other source than the New Testament.” David A. Womack, “Is Sunday the Lord's Day?”

The Pentecostal Evangel, Aug. 9, 1959, No. 2361, p. 3.

Catholic: “You may read the Bible from Genesis to Revelation, and you will not find a single line authorizing the sanctification of Sunday. The Scriptures enforce the religious observance of Saturday, a day which we [Catholics] never sanctify.” James Cardinal Gibbons, The Faith of Our Fathers, 16th edition, 1880, p. 111.


Catholic: ''Reason and sense demand the acceptance of one or the other of these alternatives: either Protestantism and the keeping holy of Saturday, or Catholicity and the keeping holy of Sunday. Compromise is impossible.'' John Cardinal Gibbons, The Catholic Mirror, December 23, 1893.

Catholic: “...of those who follow the Bible as their guide, the Israelites and Seventh-Day Adventists have the exclusive weight of evidence on their side, whilst the Biblical Protestant has not a word in self-defense for his substitution of Sunday for Saturday.” The Catholic Mirror of Sept. 9, 1893.

“At the times of this ignorance God winked at, but now calls all men everywhere to repent.” Acts 17:30.