Did Jesus Change the Sabbath Day?
Would it surprise you to know that as late as the writing of the Book of Revelation (around the year 95 A.D.), the New Testament Church (both Jewish and Gentile congregations) were observing the seventh day Sabbath? We know that Jesus Christ was a Sabbath keeper based upon the writings of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. Yet some believe He minimized the Sabbath commandment because he healed people on the Sabbath. Others believe Christ changed the Sabbath from Saturday to Sunday. There is also the belief that Christ willfully broke the fourth commandment to let the Jews know that the Sabbath command was now abolished. What did Jesus believe about the seventh day Sabbath?
By a persons actions you can discern what he or she believes. If we want to understand Jesus teaching on the Sabbath question, we need to examine His actions. One of Christs earliest sermons confirms that He kept the Sabbath. Notice what Jesus CUSTOM was as stated in Luke 4:14-16:
Then Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit to Galilee, and news of Him went out throughout all the surrounding region. And he taught in their synagogues being glorified by all. So he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up. AND AS HIS CUSTOM WAS, He went into the synagogue on the Sabbath Day, and stood up to read.
What was the first action Jesus took publicly after his temptation by Satan and his 40-day fast that followed? He went into the synagogue on the Sabbath day As His Custom Was Keeping the Sabbath Holy. Going to the synagogue on that day was the habit (custom) of Christ. All his life He kept the Sabbath day on the seventh day of the week (our Saturday). He never once kept the weekly Sabbath on Sundaynot once! It was on the Sabbath day that He said Isaiahs prophecy was fulfilled as He began His public ministry (Luke 4:17-19).
If changing the Sabbath to Sunday was on Jesus agenda, He would have certainly prepared the disciples for such a change. Such a drastic alteration of one of the Ten Commandments would have taken a lot of explaining on the part of Jesus. Isnt it reasonable to conclude that if Christ changed the Sabbath from Saturday--the seventh day of the week, to Sunday--the first day of the week, that He would have had many discussions with his disciples concerning such a major change?
But the Bible is totally silent on this matter. Why? It may surprise you to know that this change simply never took place. Had Christ made the announcement that the Sabbath was now to be kept on Sunday, the Jewish community would have viciously attacked him, even stoned him. Also, we would have an ample number of scriptures to turn to that would show us this change took place under Christs direction. Matthew, Mark, Luke and John would have recorded the disciples reactions to this alteration to the law of God. The silence of the scriptures on this matter is overwhelmingChrist there is no evidence, anywhere, that Christ changed the Sabbath day to Sunday.
So, do you believe that Christ 'changed the Sabbath to Sunday'?
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