All About the LORD'S Day
What you didn't know about God's day in the Bible
One of the czars of Russia while walking in his park, came upon a sentry standing guard over little patch of weeds. “What are you doing here?” he asked.
The sentry replied, “I don’t know. All I know is that the captain of the guard ordered me to stand over this spot.
The czar sent for the captain.
“Captain, —what is this man guarding?”
The captain answered, “All I know is that the regulations call for a sentry to be posted here.”
The czar then ordered an investigation, but no one in the government of Russia could discover why that spot needed guarding. Then they opened the royal archives, and the mystery was solved.
The records showed that a hundred years earlier, in the late eighteenth century, Catherine the Great had planted a rosebush on that plot of ground and ordered a sentry posted there to keep people from trampling on it.
Eventually the rosebush died, but nobody thought to cancel the order and for a hundred years men stood guard over a spot where a rosebush once had grown and didn’t know what they were guarding.
For years they had been guarding something that wasn’t there.
We must open the archives of God’s Word that we may understand God’s will today. There are some mysteries that need to be solved.
God's Beautiful Plan
God has a beautiful plan for your life. He is part of the plan. And you are in it too. Come apart and rest awhile, He counsels us (Mark 6:31), and then He says, “Abide in Me, and I in you.” (John 15:4). Our greatest need is to be linked with Christ. And—oh, my friend,—how much we want to, for He tells us, “He that abideth in Me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing.” John 15:5.
That first Sabbath must have been a beautiful experience. The first sunset Adam saw, began a Sabbath (Gen 2:1-3). On this first seventh day the Creator rested, and Adam, in union with his Creator, kept this first Sabbath. The Sabbath is something special that has come down to us—all the way from Paradise. It is worth finding. It is worth keeping.
Ever since Eden, God has planned for the seventh day to be a holy meeting time between Himself and man. You see, the Sabbath is a cord of love that binds the created to his Creator by providing a closer fellowship with the Lord than he could obtain on the working days.
God intended that the Sabbath would be kept continually—as long as the Creator and the created should exist (Isaiah 66:22-23). It would be something special that they would keep together through all time to come.
What the Bible tells us
1 - The first rest in the Bible was on the seventh-day of the week—the Bible Sabbath (Gen 2:1-3 ). The first work done in the Bible was done by our Creator on the first day of the week (Gen 1:3-5)
2 - The first birthday in the Bible was that of the world, and in commemoration of it God gave us the Sabbath (Gen 2:1-3). In order to change this to some other day, it would be necessary to recreate the world. Nowhere in Scripture did God ever tell us that the first day was in honor of anything.
3 - The Seventh-day Sabbath is the only rest day God ever gave to man. The Bible never tells us that the first day is to be regarded as a rest day or that it was ever set apart for this purpose.
4 - The Creator blessed the Seventh-day (Gen 2:3). There is not one occurrence where He ever pronounced a blessing on the first day of the week.
5 - The Seventh-day Sabbath was made for “man”,—that is, for mankind (Mark 2:27). It was not made for one race, the Hebrews. In contrast, Sunday, the first day, was never set aside in Scripture as a special day for any race, nor for mankind as a whole.
6 - The Bible Sabbath was given to Adam, as the head of the human race. Through him it was to be passed on to all nations that dwell on the face of the earth. The Sabbath is not “Jewish”—it is of universal obligation in our world. Sunday, the first day was never given by our Creator to Adam our forefather to be kept sacred—nor to anyone else later on.
7 - The Seventh-day Sabbath was given as a sacred legacy to mankind 2,000 years before the first Jew existed. It is not a Jewish institution. The first day of the week was never given as a sacred legacy to the world—at any time in history.
8 - The Bible never calls the Scriptural Sabbath “Jewish,” but always “the Sabbath of the Lord thy God.” Those who ridicule the Sabbath had better be careful how they treat the holy things of God. The Bible always calls the first day of the week just that: the “first day”, and nothing else.
9 - After God blessed the Bible Sabbath, He sanctified it and set it apart for a holy use (Gen 2:1-3). The Seventh-day Sabbath is dedicated time that God gave to mankind to worship Him on. Nowhere in Scripture did our Creator ever tell us that He had sanctified or dedicated the first day of the week to any purpose other than common work Ex 20:9).
10 - God specifically commanded us to keep the Seventh-day holy unto him in the Fourth of the Ten Commandments (Ex 20:8-11). God specifically commanded us to work upon the first day of the week (Ex 20:8-11). Is it wrong to obey God?
11 - At the express command of God (Ex 20:10). His followers have kept the Seventh-day Sabbath for thousands of years, until men as predicted in Scripture tried to erase it from their minds. And at the express command of God (Ex 20:9). His followers have worked on the first day of the week for thousands of years—until men attempted to change it in their thinking by enforcing a manmade law that they keep the first day in its place.
12 - God Himself calls the Seventh-day “holy” (Ex 20:8). God Himself calls the first day a “working” day (Ezekiel 46:1). When God says something, should we obey Him, or should we obey the opinions that men received centuries ago from paganism?
13 - We are told about the Sabbath and the seven-day week all through the patriarchal age (Gen 2:1-3, 8:10, 12, 29:27-28, etc.). None of the patriarchs ever kept the first day of the week, nor did they even mention it.
14 - The Bible Sabbath-the Seventh-day Sabbath was part of God’s Law before it was written down at Mount Sinai (Ex 16:4, 27-29). The first day of the week—Sunday—has never been part of God’s Law at any time in history.
15 - When God gave manna to His people, and for forty years thereafter, several miracles occurred each week in order to point out the holiness of His Seventh-day Sabbath: (1) A regular portion of manna was given Sunday through Thursday. (2) Twice as much was given on Friday. (3) No manna was given on Sabbath. (Read Exodus 16) God worked no miracle at that time to prove Sunday holiness—nor at any other time in Scripture. The heart of the Bible is the worship of God; the heart of that worship is the holy Sabbath. God’s plan is the best one for our lives.
16 - When God wrote His Moral Ten Commandment Law for mankind, He placed the Sabbath Commandment in the center of it (Exodus 20:3-17). When God wrote down this Law to guide the conduct of all men, He did not place first day sacredness in the center of the Law, nor on the edge of the Law, nor anywhere else in it.
17 - Obedience to the Seventh-day Sabbath is one of the unchangeable Ten Commandments (Ex 20:8-11). The Seventh-day Sabbath Commandment is equal to each of the other nine. Why would God place it there if it were not of equal importance with all the rest? To say that it is of lesser importance is but the talk of men. In the great Day of Judgment I would rather stand on the words of God than on the words of men. Obedience to a first-day rest is not in any of the commandments.
18 - Seventh-day sacredness is the Fourth Commandment. First-day sacredness is not in any of the commandments.
19 - The Seventh-day Sabbath was commanded by the voice of the living God (Deut 4:12-13). Never has first-day rest or first-day sanctity gone forth from the lips of God.
20 - The requirement that we must keep the Seventh-day Sabbath was written on rock with His own finger (Ex 31:18). It must be very important if God wrote it with His own finger. How many things in the Bible did God write with His finger? And He wrote it on rock (Deut 5:22). No other natural, unprocessed substance that could be written upon is as enduring as rock. How dare men stand in a pulpit and say “the Sabbath has been done away with”—when God Himself never said so. God never wrote first-day sacredness on rock—nor did His prophets ever write it on paper.
21 - The Ark was beneath the Shekinah Presence of God, within the Most Holy Place of the Sanctuary (Ex 40, etc.). And within that Ark was the Ten Commandments, which included the Sabbath Commandment (Deut 10:1-5). The Sanctuary was located in the center of the dwellings of the people of God, and in its heart was the Most Holy Place, and in the center of this room was the Ark of the Covenant, and within it, in the heart of the Moral Law, was the Sabbath Commandment. First-day sacredness was not to be found in the Ark of the Covenant, nor even in the tents of God’s people. None were to be found keeping Sunday holy.
22 - The Ark is called “the Ark of the Covenant” because it was a chest that contained and safeguarded the Covenant, which is the Ten Commandments. God called this moral Law His “Covenant” with His people (Deut 5:2-21). A covenant is an agreement. God agrees to save us if we will let Him give us enabling grace to faithfully obey His Law. Both sides agree to do something—that is what a covenant is. God never made any covenant with us in regard to the first day of the week.
23 - The “old covenant” experience is the attempt of God’s people to keep His requirements in their own strength. In the old covenant, the fault was with the people (Heb 8:8). The “New Covenant” is based on better promises than this. It is based on God’s promise to enable us to do as He asks (Heb 8). His enduring Law, which He wrote with His own finger on rock,—He offers to write upon our hearts, by the enabling power of His Spirit (Heb 8:10). If we are willing to submit to His rules, we shall in His strength be empowered to obey everything He asks of us. We shall no longer break His Law, but keep it. It will be heart-work (Jer 31:31-34). God has never promised to write Sunday keeping upon our hearts, and He has never agreed to help us sacredly observe it.
24 - After God finished giving the Ten Commandments to the people, “He added no more” (Deut 5:22). We are only to keep one day holy unto God, and it must be the day that HE selected for us. It cannot be some other day. God never added the first day as a second holy day, and He never made it the original one.
25 - God forbade work upon the Sabbath, even in the busiest times (Ex 34:21). But He has never forbidden work on the first day, even when we have the least to do.
26 - The Bible Sabbath—the Seventh-day Sabbath—is the sign of the true God, by which we are to know Him from all false gods (Ezek 20:20). It is the Creator who made the world. And only our Creator is to be our God. We are to have no other gods. We are to worship no other gods. And we are to worship Him only in the way He tells us to. Are you and I greater than our God, that we can set aside His worship rules and make our own? To do this is to worship our own ideas. The Seventh-day was given us at the Creation of the world that we might ever know which was the true God. Because our Creator did not give us Sunday as the day to worship Him upon, those who observe it, while knowing that it is unscriptural, are not doing as He asked. Historians tells us that first day worship came from ancient pagan Sun-worship, and is a sign of allegiance to it. Many Catholic and Protestant church leaders tell us so, and history proves it. It takes a brave men to knowingly reject the laws of God for the commandments of men (Matt 15:9, Mark 7:7).
27 - The Seventh-day Sabbath is a memorial of Creation (Ex 20:11, 31:17). Every time we rest upon the Seventh-day, we commemorate that amazing event, and honor Him by whose hand we were made —our Creator. Sunday, the first day of the week, was never given us as a memorial of anything. Christians will say they keep it “in honor” of the resurrection of Christ,—when the truth is that Christ never told them to do so—and they only do it simply because everyone else does. It is a known fact that the crucifixion is more important in the salvation of man than is the resurrection, and yet if you discovered that I was regularly keeping Friday holy, you would consider me odd—for you would recognize I am just following my own ideas. God SPOKE the Seventh-day as your and my Sabbath. Let’s follow what HE said rather than what men speculate. God has, indeed, given us in Scripture a Biblical Memorial of Christ’s death and resurrection, - it is the Lord’s Supper, commanded two times by Jesus in 1 Corinthians 11:24-25. Baptism is the second Memorial of His death and resurrection given us,—s well as a reminder of our covenant to obey Him by faith in Christ’s enabling grace (Read Romans 6:1-13). But we were never told in the Bible that we were to honor Sunday as a memorial of anything.
28 - God promised that Jerusalem should stand forever if the Jews would keep the Sabbath (Jer 17:24-25). He sent them into captivity to ancient Babylon for breaking it (Neh 13:18, Jer 52). And for the same reason, He destroyed Jerusalem (Jer 17:27). Those who, in our day, knowingly reject His Sabbath for a man-made one, are actually submitting to the authority of a power predicted in Scripture (Dan 7:25) that would seek to change it. They obey man instead of God.
29 - God has pronounced a special blessing on all the Gentiles who will keep the Bible Sabbath (Isaiah 56:6-7). He has never pronounced any blessing on anyone who decides to keep the first day of the week as a holy day.
30 - God not only blesses the Sabbath-day, He blesses those who keep it. He has promised a special blessing on all who will faithfully observe it (Isaiah 56:2). God has promised the opposite of a blessing on those who choose the sayings of men in place of the commandments of God (Jer 17:5 and the entire chapter, Matt 15:9. etc.).
31 - God requires that we keep His Sabbath and that we call it honorable (Isa 58:12-13). Let those beware who would dare to ridicule that holy day. It is not “the old Jewish Sabbath.” and it is not a “yoke of bondage.” On the other hand, there is no commandment to give honor to Sunday in any way.
32 - Isaiah prophesied that after the holy Sabbath had been trodden down for “many generations,” it would be restored again (lsa 58:12-13). Daniel prophesied that men would seek to change it (Daniel 7:8, 25). This is an extremely important prophecy and links closely with the parallel prophecies of Paul and John. The Little Horn power of Daniel 7:25; the Man of Sin of 2 Thessalonians 2:3-13; the Antichrist of 1 John 2:22; 4:3, and 2 John 7; and Mystery, Babylon the Great of Revelation 13 through 17 is, together, an important Biblical study. Men and women today must return to the plain words of Scripture and refuse to bow to this pagan error of Sun day sacredness. We must return to the keeping of the Ten Commandments just as God gave them (Ex 20:1-17). Jesus died on Calvary to enable us through grace to obey the Bible.
33 - Down to the end of the Old Testament, prophets and men of God faithfully kept the holy Sabbath of God. But never in one instance, did they observe the first day as sacred.
34 - When the Son of God came, He faithfully kept the Seventh-day Sabbath all His life (Luke 4:16, John 15:10), as a an example to us—for Scripture says that His earthly life is an Example for us that we are to copy (1 Pet 2:11, 1 Jn 2:6). Jesus Christ has not changed (Heb 13:8), and neither has His Father (Mal 3:6), and neither has His Law (Ps 111:7-8, Matt 5:17, Rom 3:31, etc.). God made the world in six days and then rested on the Seventh-day Sabbath. Jesus faithfully kept that Sabbath while on earth. Shall we not be safe in following the example of both the Father and the Son? Neither of them ever gave us even one instance in which they kept the first day as a rest day.
35 - As with every other week that preceded it, Jesus worked all through the final work-week of His life before His Crucifixion. After His death on Friday, “the preparation day” (the day God’s people prepared for the Sabbath—Luke 23:54, Matt 27:62). Jesus rested in the tomb during the hours of the Sabbath, and on the first day of the week He began another work-week again—by rising from the tomb (Matt 28:1, Mark 16:9, Luke 14:1, John 20:1) and traveling all the way to heaven and back again on that day. Repeatedly, Jesus had said. “Mine hour is not yet come.’’ Every act of His life was guided by the Father. We can clearly see this in His Last Week—working up to Friday afternoon, resting on the Sabbath, and then resuming His work again on Sunday. But no such example or pattern of Sunday-sacredness was ever given us by our Lord.
36 - The Seventh day is the Lord’s Day, according to the Bible. We are told about the “Lord’s day” in Revelation 1:10, but we are not there told what day it is. But very frequently throughout Scripture, the Seventh-day Sabbath is called the day of the Lord (Ex 20:10, Lev 23:3, Deut 5:14, etc.), the day unto the Lord (Ex 16:23, 25, 31:15, 35:2, etc.) and His own day (Isaiah 58:13). And while on earth, Jesus told us the day He was Lord of the Bible Sabbath (Mark 2:28). Nowhere in Scripture is the first day ever called the “Lord’s day” or any similar designation. At no time in the sacred Word did God by word of mouth ever honor the first day of the week. Be honest with yourself: Do you feel safer going by what God says to do or by what the people around you tell you to do?
37 - Jesus called Himself the “Lord of the Sabbath” (Matt 12:8) because it was His work to love and protect it, as the husband, the lord of the wife, is to love and cherish her (1 Peter 3:6). Should you not love and cherish it also? But never did He call Himself the Lord of the first day.
38 - Repeatedly, Jesus vindicated the Sabbath as a merciful institution designed for man’s good (Mark 2:23-28). But He never had anything to say about the first day of the week.
39 - Far from abolishing the Sabbath, Jesus carefully taught men how to observe it (Matt 12:1-3). But we were never taught in Scripture how we might keep Sunday holy.
40 - Just before His death, He instructed His disciples that the Sabbath should be carefully observed after His death at the time of the predicted destruction of Jerusalem—thirty nine years later, and also at the end of the world (Matt 24:2-3, 20). But He was totally silent in regard to any sanctity of Sunday after His death.
41 - Christ’s followers carefully kept the Sabbath because of the Bible commandment after He died (Luke 23:53-56). They loved Him and this was the day He had always taught them to keep. But we are never once told that they kept the first day as sacred—because of a Bible commandment or for any other reason.
42 - Thirty years after Christ’s resurrection, the Holy Spirit specifically calls it “the Sabbath day” (Acts 13:14). But at no time did men under the moving of the Spirit of God tell us that Sunday was to be regarded as anything other than a common day.
43 - Paul was the apostle to the Gentiles, and he called it the “Sabbath day” in A.D. 45 (Acts 13:27). Is Paul to be regarded as less intelligent than our modern theologians who tell us that the Sabbath ceased at the Resurrection of Christ? Paul never recommended Sunday to the Gentile believers.
44 - The Gentile converts called it the Sabbath (Acts 13:42). But we have no record in Scripture that they ever observed the first day as sacred unto God.
45 - ln the great Christian council of 49 A.D., in the presence of the apostles and thousands of disciples, James calls it the “Sabbath day” (Acts 15:21). At this important council, Sunday should have been mentioned if it had been decided upon as the new day for worship. But this did not happen.
46 - lt was customary to hold prayer meetings on the Sabbath (Acts 16:13). But neither God nor His prophets ever said one word in favor of Sunday as a holy day.
47 - Paul read the Scriptures in public meetings on the Sabbath (Acts17:2-3). But if you will read those same Scriptures you will only find nine times in all the Bible that the first day is even mentioned (Gen 1:5, Matt 28:1, Mk 16:2, 9, Lk 24:1, Jn 20:1, 19, Acts 20:7, 1 Cor 16:2).
48 - It was Paul’s custom to preach upon the Sabbath day (Acts 17:2-3). Acts mentions stop-over meetings that Paul held on several different days of the week as He was traveling through an area. Within the book of Acts alone, is given the record of Paul’s having held eighty-four meetings upon the Sabbath (Acts 13:14, 44, 16:13, 17:2, 18:4, 11). In all the Bible we have a record of only one religious meeting held on Sunday, and that was a night meeting (Acts 20:5-12). There is no intimation that another such Sunday meeting was ever held before or after it. Nothing was said about Sunday sacredness at that meeting. A meeting does not make a day sacred-Paul held a lengthy gathering a few days later (Acts 20:17-3). And “breaking bread” does not make a day sacred. This was their term for a meal. Jesus did it on Thursday night (Luke 22) and His disciples later did it every day of the week (Acts 2:42-46). (The gathering of the disciples in the upper room on the Sunday of Christ’s resurrection was not for a religious meeting—but “for fear of the Jews (Jn 20:19). They were not gathered in honor of the resurrection of Christ, for they did not yet believe in it (Mark 16:11-13).
49 - There never was any dispute or question between the Christians and the Jews who opposed them over the Sabbath day. This is strong, additional proof that the Christians still observed the same day that the Jews did. And in Scripture, there never was any argument between them over Sunday-sacredness—for neither of them believed in it. At the time of Christ, in the First Century of our era, only the pagans were keeping Sunday sacred. They had been doing this for at least a hundred years. In later centuries, Christians were to adopt this pagan custom and begin keeping the first day as though it were holy.
50 - In all their accusations against him, the Jews never charged Paul with disregarding the Sabbath. Why did they not, if he did not keep it? But on the other hand, Paul taught the Christians that they should do their secular business at home on the first day (1 Cor 16:2). Why would he do this if it were to be sacredly observed? This is the only time in all his writings that Paul ever mentions the first day of the week.
51 - It was Paul, himself, who expressly declared that he had kept the law: “Neither against the law of the Jews, neither against the temple, nor yet against Caesar, have I offended anything at all.” Acts 25:8. How could this be true if he had not kept the Sabbath? But never once did he tell us that he kept Sunday holy.
52 - The Sabbath is mentioned in the New Testament fifty-nine times, and always spoken of respectfully, bearing the same title it had in the Old Testament: “the Sabbath day.” Sunday is mentioned in the New Testament only eight times, and not in one instance does it bear the title of sanctity, or is it spoken of as a sacred day.
53 - God has never given any man permission to work upon the Bible Sabbath. Reader, by what authority do you use the Seventh-day for common labor? God has never given any man permission to regard Sunday, the first day as anything other than a common day.
54 - In not one instance did New Testament Christians—either before or after the resurrection—ever do ordinary work on the Seventh-day. Why should modern Christians do differently than Bible Christians? This is a very important question. The apostles never rested on the first day and they never said that it was sacred.
55 - There is no record that God has ever removed His blessing or sanctification from the Seventh-day. There is no record that He spoke it about Sunday.
56 - The Seventh-day Sabbath was written by His own finger upon stone at Sinai (Exodus 20, etc.). When Jesus began His work, He expressly declared that He had not come to destroy the law, “Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets” (Matt 5:17). Never at any time did He speak about establishing the sanctity of the first day of the week.
57 - Jesus, the One who redeemed us is the One who created us (Isaiah 43:1, Jn I:1-3, 14, Col 1:16-18, Eph 2:10, Heb 1:2). He is the One who gave us the Sabbath in the beginning (Gen 2:1-3). He was the first One to use the first day as a common working day (Gen 1:3-5).
58 - Jesus existed before Abraham (Jn 8:58), even from old and from everlasting (Micah 5:2). He who was with the children of Israel all through their wilderness experience (1 Cor 10:1-12) was the One who as our Creator, spoke the Law on Mount Sinai (Ex 20), and who wrote it and the Sabbath on rock that we might ever observe it (Ex 31:18 and Deut 5:22). On earth, Jesus severely condemned the Pharisees as hypocrites for pretending to love God, while at the same time they made void—set aside—one of the Ten Commandments by their traditions (Matt 23, etc.). It was Jesus who commanded that we work on the first day of the week (Ex 20:8-11), and it is Jesus who would today tell men that they should keep His Commandments instead of setting them aside by their traditions (the sayings of men).
59 - Not a word is said anywhere in the Old or New Testament about the Sabbath being abolished, done away, or changed. And there is not a text anywhere in Scripture that tells us that the sacredness God gave to the Seventh-day of the week has been transferred to Sunday, the first-day of the week. I have repeatedly, in print and over the radio, offered large sums of money to the one who would discover and present to me such a text—but to this day, no such text has ever been sent to me. The reason for this is simple: There is no such text. It does not exist. The first day was made into a counterfeit sabbath, long centuries ago by men who at that time wanted to control men’s religious worship. And men today are ignorantly keeping that day in honor of these ancient pagan practices.
60 - Not only was the great apostasy and the effort to change the Law of God—and the Bible Sabbath—predicted in Scripture (Dan 7:25), and its eventual restoration in the last days, as well (lsa 58:12-14),—but the comforting promise has been given us that it will be kept in the New Earth through all eternity by the people of God (Isaiah 66:22-23). And we hardly need mention that no such promise concerning Sunday was ever made. The Bible is worth all the time we put into it. For within its pages we learn God’s will for our lives and a peace and happiness is spread out before us—that is unattainable anywhere else.
Thank God for the clear teachings of His Word—and for the precious Bible Sabbath—the Seventh-day Sabbath—the only Sabbath God ever gave to mankind. Probably the clearest explanation—the historical facts—of how men tried to change the Sabbath into Sunday is to be found in the unusual book, Great Controversy. This book is one of the most significant books of our time. Both history and current events reveal the crisis that is just ahead. A fascinating book you will not want to lay down until it is finished. The Great Controversy picks up where the Bible ends in 70 AD – the destruction of Jerusalem. It shows the struggles and hardships of God’s people all down through the ages. It deals with the early Christian persecutions, the rise of the Catholic Church, the reformation and explains the prophecies of Daniel and Revelation. Contact us to get a free copy.
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