Seventh-Day Adventist Church

Davis SDA Fellowship

Menu
Bipowered

Why do Christians worship on Sunday not Saturday?

The majority of Christians keep Sunday, the first day of the week, rather than Saturday, the seventh day, the Sabbath of the fourth commandment. Can the majority be wrong on this point?
Browse: Which day is the Sabbath?
Browse: Who changed the Sabbath to Sunday?

If the Bible is right, the majority are wrong. The Bible says, “Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy...the seventh day is the sabbath of the Lord thy God” (Exodus 20:8, 10).

The minority throughout history

Consider this, when, in all history, has truth been in the majority? Noah was in the pitiful minority in his day, but Noah was right. Abraham was insignificantly in the minority in his time, but Abraham was the “friend of God.” Israel, fleeing from Egyptian bondage, was a weak minority, but Israel was God’s chosen nation. Jesus, your Saviour and mine, was one against a whole nation, for “He came to His own, and His own did not receive Him” (John 1:11).

Sabbath and the early Christians

In the early Christian Era, the church was a small minority against the cold, hard world. When the Christian church won political power, she sold her purity and her God-given truth to get it.

For the first 300 years of the Christian Era, the Christian religion was an illegal religion, but Judaism was a legal religion. During the apostolic era, Christians, who were then in the minority, found it convenient to let the Roman authorities think of them as Jews especially in regards to displaying the highly visible practice of Sabbath observance. This helped the Christians to be identified with Judaism and allowed early Christians to gain legitimacy with the Roman government.

Sabbath or Sunday?

The Jews then rebelled against the Rome Empire and the Romans put down the rebellion by destroying Jerusalem in 70 A.D. and again in 135 A.D. The Roman government's suppression of the Jews made it increasingly difficult for the Christians to be associated with the Jews. Therefore, some Christians in the early second century tried to distance themselves from Judaism by observing Sunday.

The pagans of the time, the majority, observed the first day of the week in honor of their sun god. By switching to observing the first day of the week, instead of the seventh, the Christians accomplished two things: they distanced themselves from Judaism, and they made it easier for pagans to become Christians.

No biblical support

This change to observing the Sabbath on Sunday, the first day of the week, had absolutely no biblical support and in time the Christians began growing from a minority religion to the majority. The evolution of worship happened over time as not all Christians immediately began embracing the first day of the week as a holy day.

Historical evidence of worship

The earliest evidence of a Christian worship service occurring on Sunday is dated between about ad 115 and ad 135, probably in the city of Rome. For several centuries, some Christians kept Sabbath on the seventh day of the week, Saturday, while others kept Sunday holy. By the 500s, Sunday observance was the norm and almost universal in the rapidly growing Christian church.

Is the majority right?

When has the majority ever been right? As the poet says: "Truth forever on the scaffold, Wrong forever on the throne."

So, dear friend, the issue is not, are you right? or am I right? It is not so much what you or what I think about this question, but "What is truth?" should be our only consideration.

The source of truth

The Word of God is our only source of truth. God's Holy Book is to be our yardstick for measuring truth. “Sanctify them by Your truth. Your word is truth” (John 17:17). “To the law and to the testimony! If they do not speak according to this word, it is because there is no light in them” (Isaiah 8:20).

Beware of deceptions

Let us never use the argument that the majority must be right, for it is deceptive. Beware lest it lead us astray and we thereby reject our Lord as He was rejected long ago by the Pharisees who used this same argument.

“The officers answered, ‘No man ever spoke like this Man!’ Then the Pharisees answered them, ‘Are you also deceived? Have any of the rulers or the Pharisees believed in Him?’” (John 7:46-48).

Remember, that since sin entered our World truth has never had the support of the majority.