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Sabbath and Sunday Worship
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Copyright © 2012 Jonathan Mukwiri 
 
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od commanded: “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy” (Exodus 20:8). But this one day that God commanded we should remember, is what almost the whole world has forgotten. Has God changed His commandment?

Almost the whole of the Christian world worships on Sunday instead of the seventh day Sabbath. We should carefully heed the warning of Christ when He said, “Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it” (Matthew 7:13-14). Is Sunday biblically sacred?

Many have not studied the Bible for themselves to prove whether Sunday is sacred. The truth is that the Bible does not teach that Sunday is sacred. Many who worship on Sunday claim to do so on the account that the Sabbath was changed to Sunday after Jesus resurrected. But there is no biblical mandate to change the Sabbath to Sunday.

As God is unchangeable, so is His Sabbath. He declares, “I change not” (Malachi 3:6). In God there “is no variableness” (James 1:17). “My covenant will I not break, nor alter the thing that is gone out of my lips” (Psalms 89:34). “I know that, whatsoever God doeth, it shall be for ever: nothing can be put to it, nor any thing taken from it: and God doeth it, that men should fear before him” (Ecclesiastes 3:14).

  The Sabbath command is as “all his commandments are sure. They stand fast for ever and ever, and are done in truth and uprightness” (Psalms 111:7, 8).

 

Sabbath for all mankind

The Sabbath, made for all mankind, originated at creation. After God had laid the foundations of the earth, had dressed the whole world in the garb of beauty, and had filled it with things useful to man, having created all the wonders of the land and the sea, He instituted the Sabbath day and made it holy. The Bible says: “And on the seventh day God ended his work which he had made; and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had made. And God blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it: because that in it he had rested from all his work which God created and made” (Genesis 2:2, 3).

Many have thought to disregard the Sabbath by saying that it is only an old Jewish day and not for Christians. Since Christians are followers of Christ, we need to let Christ Himself tell us whether the Sabbath was made only for the Jews. Christ said, “the Sabbath was made for man” (Mark 2:27). Adam was the first man, representing mankind, for whom the Sabbath was made, not merely for the Jews.

At the very beginning of the fourth commandment the Lord said: “Remember.” The Sabbath had been instituted at creation, and at Mount Sinai God simply reminded the Jews of its sacredness. Lest amid the multitude of cares and perplexities of life man forgets, the Lord said, “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy” (Exodus 20:8). The fourth command is very explicit on how to keep it holy. It reads:

“Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work: But the seventh day is the Sabbath of the LORD thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates: or in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day, and hallowed it” (Exodus 20:8-11).

In keeping the Sabbath day holy we acknowledge that God is the creator. We have six days in which to work at secular business, and God claims the seventh day as His own. Although the Sabbath was made for man, God calls it “the sabbath of the Lord” (Exodus 20:10). Man is not free to labour on the Sabbath of the Lord. Moreover, Christ who we Christians follow said He “is Lord also of the Sabbath” (Mark 2:28). Christ's claim of Lordship over the Sabbath is based on the fact that He is the creator, as “all things were made by him” (John 1:1-3, 14). Paul repeats Christ's creatorship, that “by him were all things created” (Colossians 1:13-16). Sabbath keeping is showing allegiance to God and acknowledging His creatorship.

Others argue that the Ten Commandments were nailed on the cross and hence the Sabbath is no longer binding. Whilst the law that foreshadowed Christ's sacrifice was indeed nailed on the cross, Paul maintains that the Law of God is to be kept, though we are under grace. Paul writes: “Do we then make void the law through faith? God forbid; yea, we establish the law” (Romans 3:31). “What then? shall we sin, because we are not under the law, but under grace? God forbid” (Romans 6:15).

Paul talks about the end of sacrificial laws as nailed on the cross. “Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross” (Colossians 2:14). Notice, there was nothing in the Ten Commandment law that could be defined as “contrary” to Paul and the church to whom he was writing, and it was not “against” those early Christians to refrain from killing, adultery, or theft, as found in the Ten Commandments. Paul was here talking of the ceremonial yearly sabbaths (Leviticus 23:24-36), not weekly Sabbath days, being nailed on the cross. Paul affirms the moral law, the Ten Commandments, which includes the Sabbath: “Wherefore the law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good” (Romans 7:12).

To His followers, Christ said, “If ye love me, keep my commandments” (John 14:15), which commandments includes the Sabbath. Those who reverence the commandments of Christ will, after light has been given them in reference to the fourth commandment, obey it without questioning the feasibility or convenience of such obedience. God made man in His own image and then gave him an example of observing the seventh day, which He blessed and sanctified. God designed that upon that day man should worship Him and engage in no secular pursuits. You cannot disregard the Sabbath commandment, after light is revealed to you, and be guiltless in the sight of God. The Sabbath was made for mankind to keep holy, not for mankind to profane.

 

Saturday is the Sabath day

We can only keep holy that which is holy in the first place. Only a holy God can make a day holy. Trying to keep Sunday holy instead of the Sabbath defies the sovereignty of God. Moreover, man teaches that a day counts from midnight to midnight, but the Bible teaches that a day begins at sunset and ends at sunset (Genesis 1:5, 8, 13, 19, 23, 31; Leviticus 23:32; Nehemiah 13:19; Luke 24:29). The Sabbath is from sunset Friday to sunset Saturday. No mortal can make a day holy and no mortal should ever dare to tamper with God's sacred law or times.

We cannot give an excuse that we do not know which of the seven days in the week is the seventh day. The Bible clearly locates Saturday as the seventh day of the week called the Sabbath. We know Jesus died on a Friday, and the Bible says “And that day was the preparation, and the sabbath drew on” (Luke 23:54). The next day after Friday, is Saturday, and on that Saturday, the Bible says the women who had on Friday prepared spices and ointments, “rested the sabbath day according to the commandment” (Luke 23:56). We know Christ resurrected on Sunday, and the Bible calls it “the first day of the week” (Luke 24:1).

The women who had on Friday prepared spices for the body of Jesus waited after the Sabbath to bring them to the tomb: “And when the Sabbath was past, Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James, and Salome, had bought sweet spices, that they might come and anoint him. And very early in the morning the first day of the week, they came unto the sepulcher at the rising of the sun” (Mark16:1-2). Clearly, Saturday is the Sabbath day.

The Sabbath instituted from the beginning (Genesis 2:1-3), will continue in eternity. The Bible says: “For as the new heavens and the new earth, which I will make, shall remain before me, saith the LORD, so shall your seed and your name remain. And it shall come to pass, that from one new moon to another, and from one sabbath to another, shall all flesh come to worship before me, saith the LORD” (Isaiah 66:22-23). We cannot therefore pick any day out of seven, when God places such a value on His seventh-day Sabbath to keep it holy forever.

Thus, the Sabbath obligation is still binding as it is with all Ten Commandments. Christ declares, “Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law” (Matthew 5:18). As long has there is heaven and earth, the Sabbath will continue as a sign of the Creator's power. Thus in the new heaven and new earth, “from on sabbath to another” the saints shall “worship before me, saith the Lord” (Isaiah 66:23).

We cannot argue that we keep Sunday in honour of the resurrection. We cannot disregard Christ's Law in order to honour Christ's resurrection. There is no evidence in the Bible suggesting that the disciples of Jesus ever kept Sunday in honour of His resurrection. Yes, after Jesus had resurrected, it is recorded that Jesus found the disciples in a house on a Sunday. Were they gathered to honour Christ's resurrection? No, they were not gathered to honour Christ's resurrection, but hiding for the fear of the Jews: “Then the same day at evening, being the first day of the week, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled for fear of the Jews, came Jesus and stood in the midst, and saith unto them, Peace be unto you” (John 20:19).

Others have sought to use Romans 14:5 to suggest that we should not esteem one day above the other. The entire verse says: “One man esteemeth one day above another: another esteemeth every day alike. Let every man be fully persuaded in his own mind.” So, does it matter which day we keep holy? The issue in this text (Romans 14:5) was not the weekly seventh day Sabbath. At the beginning of the chapter, the issue was on “doubtful disputations” (Romans 14:1). The Sabbath was not among issues of “doubtful disputations”, as this was clear in Genesis 2:1-3 and in Exodus 20:8-11 to Paul and to the people he was writing to. We need to read verse 6 to further understand what was here of “doubtful disputations.”

In Romans 14:6 we read: “He that regardeth the day, regardeth it unto the Lord; and he that regardeth not the day, to the Lord he doth not regard it. He that eateth, eateth to the Lord, for he giveth God thanks; and he that eateth not, to the Lord he eateth not, and giveth God thanks.” Clearly the issue here was not the Sabbath, but fast days. The Jews were known to boast about how much they fasted (Luke 18:12). In Romans 14, this pride of fasting took a different turn, with some Jews suggesting that one would be holier to fast on certain days and not on other days. Hence, in settling the issue, Paul tells the Jews that which day they fast is a matter between an individual and God, not to be imposed on everyone. Thus, in Romans 14, the issue had nothing to do with the Sabbath day.

God has never changed the Sabbath. The Bible is clear: “And God blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it” (Genesis 2:3). “Wherefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day, and hallowed it” (Exodus 20:11). If God intended for another day to become the Sabbath, He must have removed the blessing from the seventh day and placed it on the day which was to replace it. But when God bestows a blessing, it is forever: “for thou blessest, O LORD, and it shall be blessed for ever” (1 Chronicles 17:27). “Behold, I have received commandment to bless: and he hath blessed; and I cannot reverse it” (Numbers 23:20).

The day God rested after creation was Saturday, which He blessed and sanctified. To change it is to deny God Himself. Keeping Sunday instead of the Sabbath is to deny God as the creator. God says to them that disregard the Sabbath and instead keep Sunday as a day of worship, “Howbeit in vain do they worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men” (Mark 7:7).

 

Sunday is not sacred

In the New Testament, the seventh day of the week is called the Sabbath; it is mentioned in 55 verses. Sunday, the first day of the week, is mentioned in eight verses. Sunday is simply called the first day of the week, and it is always differentiated from the Sabbath. This in itself is evidence for the continued validity of the seventh-day Sabbath. But we should examine the eight verses Sunday or the first day of the week is mentioned to see if Scripture makes it sacred.

First, we know that Jesus resurrected on Sunday. The Bible says that day was the first day of the week, after the Sabbath had ended. “In the end of the sabbath, as it began to dawn toward the first day of the week, came Mary Magdalene and the other Mary to see the sepulchre” (Matthew 28:1). Clearly Sunday is not made holy or sacred in this verse.

Second, the same message is clearly taught by Mark. “And when the sabbath was past, Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James, and Salome, had bought sweet spices, that they might come and anoint him. And very early in the morning the first day of the week, they came unto the sepulchre at the rising of the sun. And they said among themselves, Who shall roll us away the stone from the door of the sepulchre?” (Mark 16:1-3).

Third, we are again told, “Now when Jesus was risen early the first day of the week, he appeared first to Mary Magdalene, out of whom he had cast seven devils” (Mark 16:9). Sunday is still not sacred.

We all know that Jesus died on Friday, commonly called the Good Friday. That day is said to have been a day before the Sabbath. “Joseph, a counselor … of Arimathaea … went unto Pilate, and begged the body of Jesus. And he took it down, and wrapped it in linen, and laid it in a sepulchre that was hewn in stone, wherein never man before was laid. And that day was the preparation, and the sabbath drew on” (Luke 23:50-54).

The apostle Luke continues to tell us: “And the women also, which came with him from Galilee, followed after, and beheld the sepulchre, and how his body was laid. And they returned, and prepared spices and ointments; and rested the sabbath day according to the commandment” (Luke 23:55-56). Clearly, after Friday, the next day was the Sabbath. We know the day after Friday is Saturday. Clearly then, the Sabbath is Saturday.

Fourth, we note that after the Sabbath, after Saturday, Luke explains what the next day was. “Now upon the first day of the week, very early in the morning, they came unto the sepulchre, bringing the spices which they had prepared, and certain others with them. And they found the stone rolled away from the sepulchre” (Luke 24:1-2). Note that Sunday was a normal working day after the Sabbath, and Sunday is not regarded as holy nor made sacred.

Fifth, John also gives the same information that Sunday was a day after the Sabbath. “The first day of the week cometh Mary Magdalene early, when it was yet dark, unto the sepulchre, and seeth the stone taken away from the sepulchre” (John 20:1).

Sixth, John narrates what had befallen the disciples on that Sunday when Jesus resurrected. We are told, for fear of the Jews, the disciples had assembled in hiding, and this was not because Sunday was holy. “Then the same day at evening, being the first day of the week, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled for fear of the Jews, came Jesus and stood in the midst, and saith unto them, Peace be unto you” (John 20:19).

Seventh, we come to a text often misinterpreted to mean that there was a service gathering on Sunday in Corinth. “Now concerning the collection for the saints, as I have given order to the churches of Galatia, even so do ye. Upon the first day of the week let every one of you lay by him in store, as God hath prospered him, that there be no gatherings when I come … whomsoever ye shall approve by your letters, them will I send to bring your liberality unto Jerusalem” (1 Corinthians 16:1-2). There is no Sunday sacredness here, but collection of food and necessities to send to needy Christians in Jerusalem done on the first working day of the week (Sunday).

Eighth, we read about Paul's preaching from after the Sabbath into hours of Sunday. “And we sailed away from Philippi after the days of unleavened bread, and came unto them to Troas in five days; where we abode seven days. And upon the first day of the week, when the disciples came together to break bread, Paul preached unto them, ready to depart on the morrow; and continued his speech until midnight” (Acts 20:6-7). In the morning of Sunday, we see Paul departing, and no suggestion that Sunday was kept as holy in this passage.

Sunday, a working day, is not scared. Saturday is “the Sabbath of the LORD” (Exodus 20:10); the Lord calls the Sabbath “my holy day” (Isaiah 58:13); the Lord says He is “Lord also of the Sabbath” (Mark 2:28); and John refers to Saturday in saying “I was in the Spirit on the Lord's day” (Revelation 1:10).

 

Christ never changed the Sabbath

Jesus never changed the Sabbath. It is said of Jesus, “as his custom was, he went into the synagogue on the Sabbath day” (Luke 4:16). Jesus Himself said, “Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to come to destroy, but to fulfil. For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled” (Matthew 5:17-18). Jesus later affirms, “I have kept My Father's commandments” (John 15:10), which commandments included Sabbath keeping.

The apostles never changed the Sabbath. After Jesus resurrected and went to heaven, the apostles continued to keep the Sabbath and never changed it to Sunday. We are told of Paul, “And when the Jews were gone out of the synagogue, the Gentiles besought that these words might be preached to them the next sabbath … And the next sabbath day came almost the whole city together to hear the word of God” (Acts 13:42, 44).

Even when Paul went to places where there is no synagogue and no Jews, he kept the Sabbath holy. In Greece, we are told of Paul, “And on the sabbath we went out of the city by a river side, where prayer was wont to be made; and we sat down, and spake unto the women which resorted thither” (Acts 16:13).

It was Paul's custom to keep the Sabbath holy, as we are told, “And Paul, as his manner was, went in unto them, and three sabbath days reasoned with them out of the scriptures” (Acts 17:2). Again, “And he reasoned in the synagogue every sabbath, and persuaded the Jews and the Greeks” (Acts 18:4).

 

Who claims credit for Sunday?

The prophet Daniel declared that the little horn was the power that would think to change times and laws (Daniel 7:25). It is common knowledge that it is the Catholic Church that claims credit for the change from Sabbath to Sunday. But a few quotations here:

Notice the following section from a Catholic catechism: “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 transferred the solemnity from Saturday to Sunday” (Peter Geiermann, The Convert's Catechism of Catholic Doctrine, 1930, p. 50).

Another quote: “Q. How prove you that the church hath power to command Feasts and holy Days? A. By the very act of changing the Sabbath into Sunday, which Protestants allow of; and therefore they fondly contradict themselves, by keeping Sunday strictly, and breaking most other feasts commanded by the same church. Q. How prove you that? A. Because by keeping Sunday, they acknowledge the church's power to ordain Feasts, and to command them under sin; and by not keeping the rest by her commanded, they again deny, in fact, the same power” (Henry Tuberville, An Abridgment of the Christian Doctrine, Basilea, 1680, p. 131-132).

Another quote: “Q. Have you any other way of proving that the Church has power to institute festivals of precept?_ A. 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, New York: P.J. Kenedy & Sons, third American edition, revised, edn., 1876, p. 174).

Another quote: “The Church of God has thought it well to transfer the celebration and observance of the Sabbath to Sunday!” (Catechism of the Council of Trent, second revised edition (English), 1937, page 402, First published in 1566).

Another quote: “The Church, on the other hand, after changing the day of rest from the Jewish Sabbath, or seventh day of the week, to the first, made the Third Commandment refer to Sunday as the day to be kept holy as the Lord's Day” (The Catholic Encyclopedia, 'The Ten Commandments', Vol. 4, 1908, by Robert Appleton Company).

Another quote: “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” (Cardinal Gibbons, Catholic Mirror, December 23, 1893).

Indeed, 'compromise is impossible,' for “No man can serve two masters” (Matthew 6:24); hence both Protestantism and Catholicism stand guilty before the judgment bar of God for profaning the Sabbath! God gave the Sabbath as a sign of His power to create and His power to sanctify and save (Exodus 31:17; Ezekiel 20:12). “Because sentence against an evil work is not executed speedily, therefore the heart of the sons of men is fully set in them to do evil” (Ecclesiastes 8:11); but God will surely avenge!

 

Final call to keep the Sabbath holy

The final call to keep the Sabbath holy is made, calling all to worship God who “made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters” (Revelation 14:7). The call to worship specifically refers to the fourth Commandment, the Sabbath. It is worth recalling the Biblical fourth commandment:

“Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work: But the seventh day is the Sabbath of the LORD thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates: or in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day, and hallowed it” (Exodus 20:8-11).

The call to worship God is based upon the fact that He is the Creator and that to Him all other beings owe their existence. Wherever, in the Bible, God's claim to worship, above the gods of the heathen, is presented, there is cited the evidence of His creative power (for example Jeremiah 10:10-12).

“All the gods of the nations are idols: but the Lord made the heavens” (Psalm 96:5). “To whom then will ye liken Me, or shall I be equal? saith the Holy One. Lift up your eyes on high, and behold who hath created these things … Thus saith the Lord that created the heavens; God Himself that formed the earth and made it: . . . I am the Lord; and there is none else” (Isaiah 40:25, 26; 45:18). Says the psalmist: “Know ye that the Lord He is God: it is He that hath made us, and not we ourselves … O come, let us worship and bow down: let us kneel before the Lord our Maker” (Psalms 100:3; 95:6). And the holy beings who worship God in heaven state, as the reason why their homage is due to Him: “Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honor and power: for Thou hast created all things” (Revelation 4:11). Sabbath keeping is accepting God as creator.

Sabbath keeping is a sign of loyalty to God, for God says, “And hallow my sabbaths; and they shall be a sign between me and you, that ye may know that I am the LORD your God” (Ezekiel 20:20). And the reason given is: “For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, and on the seventh day He rested, and was refreshed” (Exodus 31:17). By Sabbath keeping, shall the world “discern between the righteous and the wicked, between him that serveth God and him that serveth him not” (Malachi 3:18). Sabbath keeping shows allegiance to God.

 

Sabbath-keepers and Sunday-keepers

Those who claim that the Ten Commandments proclaimed at Mount Sinai are no longer binding on them simply deny the validity of the Sabbath. None claim that man is free to kill or steal. Yet the one who said “thou shalt not kill” or “thou shalt not steal” (Exodus 20:13, 15), is the same one that said “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy” (Exodus 20:8). The controversy is therefore on one of the Ten Commandments, the Sabbath. But those who keep nine and disregard one, the Bible says: “For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all” (James 2:10).

At Christ's return, there will be only two classes: Sabbath-keepers and Sunday-keepers. Christ gives the test by which to prove our loyalty or disloyalty: “If ye love Me,” He says, “keep My commandments. … He that hath My commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth Me. And he that loveth Me shall be loved of My Father, and I will love him, and will manifest Myself to him” (John 14:15-21). “If ye keep My commandments, ye shall abide in My love; even as I have kept My Father's commandments, and abide in His love” (John 15:10). This calls for a choice of allegiance between Sabbath and Sunday.

The third angel warns all not to “worship the beast and his image” (Revelation 14:9). The beast of Revelation 14 is the same beast of Revelation 13:1-10, described as “like unto a leopard,” to which the dragon gave “his power, and his seat, and great authority.” This symbol, as most Protestants have believed, represents the papacy, which succeeded to the power and seat and authority once held by the ancient Roman Empire.

Two quotes supports this interpretation. First, “The Roman Church ... pushed itself into the place of the Roman World-Empire, of which it is the actual continuation. ...The Pope ... is Caesar's successor” (Adolf Harnack, What is Christianity? trans. by Thomas Bailey Saunders, New York: Putnam, 2nd ed., rev., 1901, p. 270). Second, “The mighty Catholic Church was little more than the Roman Empire baptised. Rome was transformed as well as converted. The very capital of the old Empire became the capital of the Christian Empire. The office of Pontifex Maximus was continued in that of Pope” (Alexander Clarence Flick, The Rise of the Mediaeval Church, reprint: New York, Burt Franklin, 1959, pp. 148-149).

But what is the “image to the beast” and how is it to be formed? “When the leading churches of the United States, uniting upon such points of doctrine as are held by them in common, shall influence the state to enforce their decrees and to sustain their institutions, then Protestant America will have formed an image of the Roman hierarchy, and the infliction of civil penalties upon dissenters will inevitably result” (The Great Controversy, p. 445).

Further, the third angel warns that no man should receive the Mark of the Beast “in his forehead, or in his hand” (Revelation 14:9). We have already identified the beast as the papacy. The papacy claims credit for instituting Sunday worship - virtually all churches admits in their official writings that there is no Biblical support for Sunday sacredness.

The forehead represents the mind, and the hand is a symbol of work. “On the hand” and “between the eyes” are consistent symbols in Scripture for a person's thoughts and actions (Exodus 13:16; Deuteronomy 6:8; 11:18). A person will receive the mark of the beast in his forehead by choosing to believe that Sunday is a holy day in spite of Bible truth. A person will be marked in the right hand by working on God's Sabbath or by outwardly keeping Sunday laws for convenient reasons - such as a job.

Soon, if not already by the time you read this, the lamb-like beast (Revelation 13:11) is to pass a law enforcing Sunday, forcing all to worship the leopard-like beast (Revelation 13:2). “And he exerciseth all the power of the first beast before him, and causeth the earth and them which dwell therein to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed” (Revelation 13:12). When you obey the decree that commands you to cease from labour on Sunday and worship on Sunday, while you know that there is not a word in the Bible showing Sunday to be other than a common working day, you consent to receive the mark of the beast, and refuse the seal of God.

There are numerous factors that could set the stage for a worldwide Sunday law to execute those who refuse to violate conscience. These could include: The activity of terrorists; Riots and escalating crime; A major economic crash; Nuclear threats from radical nations; Appalling global disasters; Radical special interest groups; and many similar woes could easily precipitate a demand from the papacy (leopard-like beast) for a Sunday Law to be enforced by the United States (lamb-like beast).

Religious powers seeking to legislate a Sunday Law will not only ignore and despise the Sabbath, but will “point to calamities on land and sea - to the storms of wind, the floods, the earthquakes, the destruction by fire - as judgments indicating God's displeasure because Sunday is not sacredly observed. These calamities will increase more and more, one disaster will follow close upon the heels of another; and those who make void the law of God will point to the few who are keeping the Sabbath of the fourth commandment as the ones who are bringing wrath upon the world. This falsehood is Satan's device that he may ensnare the unwary” (The Signs of the Times, January 17, 1884, Par. 12).

It is said: “Protestants little know what they are doing when they propose to accept the aid of Rome in the work of Sunday exaltation. While they are bent upon the accomplishment of their purpose, Rome is aiming to re-establish her power, to recover her lost supremacy...

“She is silently growing into power. Her doctrines are exerting their influence in legislative halls, in the churches, and in the hearts of men. She is piling up her lofty and massive structures in the secret recesses of which her former persecutions will be repeated” (The Great Controversy, pp. 581-582).

When religious and political powers unite to enact a law to force God's people to keep Sunday holy, God will surely act! Daniel 12:1 tells us: “At that time thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book.” Zechariah 2:8 tells us: “For thus saith the LORD of hosts; After the glory hath he sent me unto the nations which spoiled you: for he that toucheth you toucheth the apple of his eye.”

Whenever Satan has directly touched the Biblical fourth commandment, the Sabbath, God intervenes directly! Satan caused Pharaoh to work the Israelites “daily” (Exodus 5) including on Sabbath, God sent plagues (Exodus 7), then Moses to take His people out. When Satan will cause religious and state confederacies to enforce Sunday worship (Revelation 13), God will send the plagues again (Revelation 15, 16), and Christ will come to take His faithful people to heaven (1 Thessalonians 4:16-18).

Hitherto the predictions that religious intolerance would gain control in the United States, that church and state would unite to persecute Sabbath-keepers have been pronounced groundless and absurd. But already, the United States Supreme Court in McGowan v Maryland (366 U.S. 420, 1961) held, 8:1, that state “blue laws” (Sunday closing laws) were constitutional. It should be easy to consolidate states Sunday laws into a National Sunday Law. Although calls for EU Member States and Institutions to pass a law to protect Sunday as a weekly rest day (DC/763921EN, 2009) failed, as calls continue to be made, a universal Sunday law must be approaching.

“The Sabbath will be the great test of loyalty … While the observance of the false sabbath in compliance with the law of the state, contrary to the fourth commandment, will be an avowal of allegiance to a power that is in opposition to God, the keeping of the true Sabbath, in obedience to God's law, is an evidence of loyalty to the Creator. While one class, by accepting the sign of submission to earthly powers, receive the mark of the beast, the other, choosing the token of allegiance to divine authority, receive the seal of God” (The Great Controversy, p. 605).

The third angel warns that those who accepts the mark of the beast, “the same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation” (Revelation 14:10). Everything is now at stake. It is a life and death question. Those who in the face of these specifications refuse to repent of their transgressions will realise the result of disobedience.

When Sunday observance becomes law, God will reveal Himself. “It is time for Thee, Lord, to work: for they have made void Thy law” (Psalms 119:126). When the powers of this earth will force men to keep Sunday, God will arise in His majesty, and will “shake terribly the earth” (Isaiah 2:19). God will come “out of his place to punish the inhabitants of the earth for their iniquity” (Isaiah 26:21). You must beforehand choose between Sabbath and Sunday.

 

Concluding Remarks

Sabbath and Sunday Worship reminds the reader that God said “Remember.” “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth” (Genesis 1:1). God created in six literal days, rested on the seventh day, blessed and sanctified it (Genesis 2:1-3). We are to keep the Sabbath holy as a sign of God's Creatorship (Exodus 31:17). God says, “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy” (Exodus 20:8).

Sabbath and Sunday Worship shows the battle is over worship. In Genesis 4 the battle between Abel and Cain was over worship. In Daniel 3 the battle between the Hebrew boys and Nebuchadnezzar was over worship. In Revelation 13 the battle between the Saints of God and the Beast is over worship.

Sabbath and Sunday Worship represents that old voice that pleads: “choose you this day whom ye will serve” (Joshua 24:15). By following the teachings of men in observing Sunday instead of the seventh day Sabbath, you effectively set yourself at battle with the rider on a white horse (see Revelation 19:11-21).

Finally, “Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep His commandments: for this is the whole duty of man” (Ecclesiastes 12:13).

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