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Question: Sunday or Saturday Sabbath?

Full Question from Annette:

Seventh day Adventist Church celebrates the Sabbath on Saturday. Made me curious as to when exactly the Church changed it to be Sunday. I know the reason, but Jesus would have honored the Sabbath as a Jew, as well all the apostles. How long after Jesus death and resurection was Sunday established as the new Sabbath?


Technically the Sunday observance of the Lord’s day never replaced the sabbath, Saturday remains the sabbath, but as with kosher dietary laws we are no longer bound by it.

Therefore let no one pass judgment on you in questions of food and drink or with regard to a festival or a new moon or a sabbath. These are only a shadow of what is to come; but the substance belongs to Christ.

Colossians 2:16-17

The Church began to observe Sunday as the Lord’s day during New Testament times, and it is mentioned in several places that they were “gathered together on the first day of the week” which is Sunday (Acts 20:7 & 1 Corinthians 16:1-2) . The Apostles probably continued to observe the Jewish sabbath also, at least until the council of Jerusalem that is mentioned in Acts.

These paragraphs from the catechism are very helpful to understand this;

CCC 2175: Sunday is expressly distinguished from the sabbath which it follows chronologically every week; for Christians its ceremonial observance replaces that of the sabbath. In Christ’s Passover, Sunday fulfills the spiritual truth of the Jewish sabbath and announces man’s eternal rest in God. For worship under the Law prepared for the mystery of Christ, and what was done there prefigured some aspects of Christ:

Those who lived according to the old order of things have come to a new hope, no longer keeping the sabbath, but the Lord’s Day, in which our life is blessed by him and by his death.

CCC 2176: The celebration of Sunday observes the moral commandment inscribed by nature in the human heart to render to God an outward, visible, public, and regular worship “as a sign of his universal beneficence to all.” Sunday worship fulfills the moral command of the Old Covenant, taking up its rhythm and spirit in the weekly celebration of the Creator and Redeemer of his people.

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