Who Changed the Bible Sabbath
- Supplement to Lesson 22
At the beginning of earth's history, God created the entire world in
six days and rested on the seventh day and sanctified it, or set it apart, as a special
day for men to worship Him on (Gen 2:1-3). This is God's own day--His day--the Lord's
Day--given to man to worship Him on.
Jesus Christ created all things (Col. 1:16, In 1:3, Heb 1:1-3) and
He calls Himself the Lord of the Sabbath (Matt 12:8, Mk 2:28). It is His day. The Lord's
Day (Rev 1:10).
He made it for man--all mankind (Mk 2:27) and not lust for the
Jewish race. God gave the Sabbath at the foundation of the world (Gen 2.1-3), and His
followers kept it before it was given on Mount Sinai (Ex 16). On Mount Sinai He spoke it
and wrote it that all the world might more clearly know of it (Lx 20:8-11). It is the seal
of the law and the sign that He is our Creator (Ex. 11:17) and our Redeemer (Ex. 20:12)
and that we belong to Him (Ex. 20:20).
Because His people, so prone to go into idolatry and serve other
gods, later refused to obey Him and keep His Sabbath, Jerusalem was destroyed and His
people led into captivity (Jer 17.19-27; 52:1-13).
While here on earth, Jesus gave us a careful example of obedience to
the Sabbath day He had given mankind (Lk 4:16), and rebuked man-made changes in His laws
(Matt 15.9, 6). He magnified the law and made it honorable (Isa. 42:2I).
Just before His death He predicted the destruction of Jerusalem
thirty-nine years later, in A.D. 70, and the end of the world (Matt. 24), and He cautioned
His followers to continue to carefully observe the Sabbath even when those terrible events
should come to pass years and even centuries later (Matt 24:20).
He carefully instructed His disciples to keep His day holy, and He
wanted them to "remember the Sabbath day" (Ex 20.8) long after He had returned
to heaven. His followers faithfully kept it after His death (Lk 23:56), and later in their
missionary work (Ac 13:14-16, 40-46; 16:12-15, 17:1-4). They declared that we ought to
obey God rather than men (Ac 5:29), and Paul could sincerely say of himself and his fellow
believers: "Do we then make void the law through faith? God forbid: yea, we establish
the law." (Rom 3:31). The Word of God was being fulfilled that Gentiles would one day
faithfully keep the Sabbath the Jews were desecrating (Isa 56:3-7).
The Bible predicted that a great desolating power was to arise in
later centuries that would seek to destroy the atonement and God's laws from among His
people (Dan 7.8, 20-2 I, 25, 8:9-12).
The attempt by this power to change God's laws, and especially His
Time Law, was specifically predicted in Daniel 7:25. Only God can change the law, and so
Paul predicted the rise of a man who would call himself God (2 Thess 2:3-4). With boldness
this power would sit in the temple of God and call itself God (2 Thess 2.4), and
boastfully admit what it had done, declaring it to be the Mark of its authority--and
indeed is it not?
You see, it's like this: I acknowledge and honor God 's authority,
when I obey His commands and encourage others to do so. I declare my independence of God
when I set aside His law and refuse to keep it. But I set myself up as a rival god, when
having set aside His law. I establish in its place a counterfeit and then require others
to keep it in place of the law that God commanded.
"Whom ye obey, his servants ye are." (Rom 6:16). God's
Word declares that obedience to this man-made god by keeping his counterfeit day of
worship, while knowing that there is not one word, not one hint in all of Scripture to
keep that false day in place of the true Bible Sabbath--will soon bring upon oneself the
Mark of the Beast (Rev 13:16-17, 14:6-12). Only the Remnant who keep the commandments of
God and the faith of Jesus will at that time resist it (Rev 13:8, 14:6-12, 12:17). In
fact, the Bible predicts a return to the true Sabbath as God's people will rebuild the
torn-out place in the law of God--by again keeping His true Sabbath (Isa 58:13-14). And,
thank God, the assuring prophecy is given that the saved of all ages will one day soon,
honor the holy Sabbath of God for all eternity in the new earth (Isa 66:22-23).
Sunday in the Bible
Sunday is never called sacred or holy anywhere in the Bible. It is
never called the Sabbath or the Lord's Day. Sunday is only mentioned eight times in the
Bible. The first time is Genesis 1:5, where the first day of creation week is spoken of.
The next five times refer to Jesus' appearances on Sunday to His disciples after His rest
in the tomb on the Sabbath (Matt 28:1, Mk 16:1-2,9, Lk 24:1, Jn 20:1,19). Jesus went and
found them and told them the good news that He was alive. Nothing here about Sunday
sacredness. The seventh time is in Acts 20:7-8, where Paul speaks to the Ephesian leaders.
A few verses later (Ac 20:15-38), he speaks to another group in the middle of the week,
but that doesn't make that day any more sacred than the Sunday preceding it. For only a
direct command of God can make a day holy. Repeatedly in Acts Paul kept the Sabbath holy
(Ac 13:14-16, 40-46, 16:12-1.5, 17:1-4), just as His Master had done before Him. Acts is
as silent on Sunday sanctity as is Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John.
The eighth and last text is found in 1 Corinthians 16:1-2 where Paul
instructs the believers to do their bookkeeping at home on Sunday mornings. The first
working day of the week was a good day for this since Friday they were busy preparing for
the Sabbath, This is the only mention in all Paul's writings of the first day of the week.
John the Revelator saw Christ in vision on the Lord's Day (Rev
1:10). This was the Day of the Lord. The Sabbath is the day unto the Lord (Ex 16:23,25,
31:15, 35:2), the day of the Lord (Ex 20:10, Lev 23:3, Deut 5:4), and His own day (Isa
58:13). Jesus is the Creator, who gave us the Sabbath (Eph 3:9, Jn 1.3, Col 1:16, Heb 1:2,
Gen 2:1-3), and John had heard Him call Himself, "the LORD of the Sabbath day."
(Matt 12:8, Mk 2:28), John well knew which day was the Lord's Day. This day is the
Memorial Day of the Creator (Gen 2:1-3, Ex 31:1 7), the Memorial Day of the Redeemer (Ezek
20:12, 20). It is the Lord's Day . . . a day that God wants to share with you. He plans to
keep it' with you through all eternity to come (Isa 66:22-23). Come, worship Him on the
Best Day--His day--the only day of worship your God ever gave you.
Protestants and Historians - What They Tell Us
Congregational: "It is quite clear that
however rigidly or devotedly we may spend Sunday, we are not keeping Sabbath. The Sabbath
was founded on a specific, Divine command. We can plead no such command for the observance
of Sunday. There is not a single line in the New Testament to suggest that we incur any
penalty by violating the supposed sanctity of Sunday."--Dr. R W. Dale in The Ten
Commandments, pp. 106-107.
Baptist: "There was and is a commandment to
keep holy the Sabbath day, but that Sabbath was not Sunday. It will, however, be readily
said, and with some show of triumph, that the Sabbath was transferred from the seventh to
the first day of the week - - - Where can the record of such a transaction be found? Not
in the New Testament, absolutely not"--Dr. E F. Hiscox (author of The Baptist
Manual), report of his sermon at the Baptist Ministers' Convention, in New York Examiner.
November 16, 1893.
Presbyterian: "There is no word, no hint in
the New Testament about abstaining from work on Sunday. The observance of Ash Wednesday,
or Lent, stands exactly on the same footing as the observance of Sunday. Into the rest of
Sunday no Divine Law enters. "--Canon Eyton, of Westminster, in The Ten
Episcopal: "The Bible commandment says on the
seventh day thou shalt rest. That is Saturday. Nowhere in the Bible is it laid down that
worship should be done on Sunday. "--Phillip Carrington, quoted in Toronto Daily
Star, October 26. 1949.
Church of England: "The Lord's day was merely
of ecclesiastical institution. It was not introduced by virtue of the fourth
commandment."--Jeremy Taylor, Ductor Dubitantium, 1850 edition, volume 9. pages
Anglican: "And where are we told in the
Scriptures that we are to keep the first day at all? We are commanded to keep the seventh;
but we are nowhere commanded to keep the first day. The reason why we keep the first day
of the week holy instead of the seventh is for the same reason that we observe many other
things, not because the Bible, but because the church, has enjoined it." --Isaac
Williams, Plain Sermons on the Catechism, volume 1, pages 334,336.
Disciples of Christ: " 'But,' say some, 'it
was changed from the seventh to the first day.' Where? when? and by whom? --No, it never
was changed, nor could it be, unless creation was to be gone through again: for the reason
assigned (in Genesis 2:1-31 must be changed before the observance or respect to the
reason, can be changed. It is all old wives' fables to talk of the change of the Sabbath
from the seventh to the first day. If it be changed, it was that August personage changed
it who changes times and law ex-officio. --I think his name is 'Doctor Anti-Christ'.
"--Alexander Campbell, the Founder of the Disciples of Christ Church writing in
The Christian Baptist, February 2, 1824, volume 1, number 7.
Lutheran: "We have seen how gradually the
impression of the Sabbath faded, and now completely the newer thought underlying the
observance of the first day took possession of the church. We have seen that the
Christians of the first three centuries never confused one with the other. "--The
Sunday Problem, 1923 edition, a study book of the United Lutheran Church, page 36.
Methodist: "It is true that there is no
positive command for infant baptism. Nor is there any for keeping holy the first day of
the week. Many believe that Christ changed the Sabbath. But, from His own words, we see
that He came for no such purpose. Those who believe that Jesus changed the Sabbath base it
only on a supposition."--Amos Binney, Theological Compendium, pages 180-181,171.
English Independent: "Sabbath in the Hebrew
language signifies rest, and is the seventh day of the week, . . . and it must be
confessed that there is no law in the New Testament concerning the first day. "--Charles
Buck, A Theological Dictionary, art. "Sabbath," page 403.
Lutheran Free Church: "For when there could
not be produced one solitary place mm the Holy Scriptures which testified that either the
Lord Himself or the apostles had ordered such a transfer of the Sabbath to Sunday then it
was not easy to answer the question: Who has transferred time Sabbath into Sunday, and who
has had the right to do it?"--George Sverdrup (founder of the Lutheran Free
Church), En ny Dag (A New Day), in Sondagen og dens Halligholdelse (Sunday and its
Dwight L. Moody: "I honestly believe that this
commandment is just as binding today as it ever was. I have talked with men who have said
that it has been abrogated [abolished], but they have never been able to point to any
place in the Bible where God repealed it. When Christ was on earth, He did nothing to set
it aside . . . The Sabbath was binding in Eden, and it has been in force ever since. How
can men claim that this one commandment has been done away with when they will admit that
the other nine (adultery, murder, lying, theft, etc.] are still binding?"--Dwight
L. Moody (the well-known evangelist), Weighed and Wanting, 1898, pages 46-47.
"The festival of Sunday, like all other festivals, was always
only a human ordinance, and it was far from the intentions of the apostles to establish a
Divine command in this respect, far from them, and from the early apostolic church
transfer the laws of the Sabbath to Sunday. "--Augustus Neander, the History of
the Christian Religion and Church, Rose's translation from the first German edition, page
186 [Neander is generally considered to be one of the Protestant church
historians of modern times].
"It [the Catholic Church] reversed the Fourth Commandment by
doing away with the Sabbath of God's Word, and instituting Sunday as a holiday."--N.
Summerbell, History of the Christian Church, 1873, page 415.
"It must be confessed that there is no law in the New Testament
concerning the first day."--McClintock and Strong, Cyclopedia of Biblical,
Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature, volume 9, page 196, article: "The
The Bible Prophecy: "Behold, in this horn were
eyes like the eyes of man, and a mouth speaking great things . . . then I would know the
truth of the fourth beast . . . and of the ten horns that were in his head, and of the
other which came up, and before whom three fell: even of that horn that had eyes, and a
mouth that spake very great things, whose look was more stout than his fellows. I beheld,
and the same horn made war with the saints, and prevailed against them . . . He said, The
fourth beast shall be the fourth kingdom upon earth, . . . and the ten horns out of this
kingdom are ten kings that shall arise: and another shall rise after them; and he shall be
diverse from the first, and he shall subdue three kings. And he shall speak great words
against the Most High, and shall wear out the saints of the Most High, and think to change
times and laws, and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and the
dividing of time."--The Book of Daniel, chapter seven, verses 8,19-21,23- 25
(compare Dan. and Rev. 12 and 13).
Roman Catholics - What They Tell Us
"Ques. --Have you any other way of proving that the church has
power to institute festivals of precept?
"Ans. --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."--Priest Stephan
Keenan, A Doctrinal Catechism, 1846 edition, page 174.
"Ques. --Which is the Sabbath day?
"Ans. --Saturday is the Sabbath day.
"Ques. --Why do we observe Sunday instead of Saturday?
"Ans. --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, 1957 edition, page 50 [Geiermann
received the "apostolic blessing" of pope Pius X on his labors, January 26,
"You may search the Bible from Genesis to Revelation, and you
will not find a single line authorizing the sanctification of Sunday. The Scriptures
enforce the religious observance of Saturday, a day which we never sanctify."--James
Cardinal Gibbon, The Faith of Our Fathers, chapter 8.
"It is well to remind the Presbyterians, Baptists, Methodists,
and all other Christians, that the Bible does not support them anywhere in their
observance of Sunday. Sunday is an institution of the Roman Catholic Church, and those who
observe the day observe a commandment of the Catholic Church."--Priest Brady, in
an address at Elizabeth, N.J., March 17, 1903, reported in the Elizabeth, N.J. News of
March 18, 1903.
"Reason and common 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."--The
Catholic Mirror, Dec. 23, 1893.
"For ages all Christian nations looked to the Catholic Church,
and, as we have seen, the various states enforced by law her ordinances as to worship and
cessation of labor on Sunday. Protestantism, in discarding the authority of the Church,
has no good reason for its Sunday theory, and ought logically, to keep Saturday as the
Sabbath. The State in passing laws for the due sanctification of Sunday, is unwittingly
acknowledging the authority of the Catholic Church, and carrying out more or less
faithfully its prescriptions. The Sunday as a day of the week set apart for the obligatory
public worship of Almighty God is purely a creation of the Catholic Church."--The
American Catholic Quarterly Review, January, 1883, pages 152, 139.
"The observance of Sunday by the Protestants is an homage they
pay, in spite of themselves, to the authority of the [Catholic] Church."--Monsignor
Louis Segur, Plain Talk About the Protestantism of Today, 1868, page 213.
"Ques. --How prove you that the Church hath power to command
feasts and holy-days?
"Ans. --By the very act of changing the Sabbath into Sunday,
which Protestants allow of [by observing it]; and therefore they fondly contradict
themselves, by keeping Sunday strictly, and breaking most, other feasts commanded by the
same Church."--Henry Tuberville, An Abridgement of the Christian Doc trine, (1833
papal approbation), p. 58.
"The Catholic Church . . . by virtue of her divine mission,
changed the day from Saturday to Sunday."--Catholic Mirror, official organ of
Cardinal Gibbons, September 23, 1893.
"If we consulted the Bible only, we should still have to keep
holy the Sabbath Day, that is, Saturday."--John Laux, A Course in Religion for
Catholic High Schools and Academies, 1936 edition, volume 1, page 51.
"The Pope can modify [change] the Divine Law"--Ferraris,
"We define that the Holy Apostolic See and the Roman Pontiff
holds the primacy over the whole world."--Labbe and Cossart, The Most Holy
Councils, volume 13, column 1167 on The Council of Trent.
"The Pope is of so great dignity and so exalted that he is not
a mere man, but as it were God, and the vicar of God. He is the divine monarch and supreme
emperor, king of kings. Hence the Pope is crowned with a triple crown, as king of heaven
and of earth and of the lower regions."--Lucius Ferraris, Prompta Bibliotheca,
volume 6, article: "Papa II" ['Papa' is the Latin name for pope, and both words
mean 'Father.' Read Matthew 23.9].
''We hold upon this earth the place of God Almighty."--Pope
Leo XIII, in an encyclical letter dated June 20, 1894, The Great Encyclical Letters of Leo
XIII, page 304.
"Tradition, not Scripture, is the rock on which the Church of
Jesus Christ is built. "--A. Nampon (a Jesuit priest), Catholic Doctrine, page
"If Protestants would follow the Bible, they should worship God
on the Sabbath day. In keeping the Sunday they are following a law of the Catholic
Church."--Albert Smith, Chancellor of the Archdiocese of Baltimore, replying for
the Cardinal in a letter of February 10, 1920.
"The Church changed the observance of the Sabbath to Sunday by
right of the divine, infallible authority given to her by her founder, Jesus Christ. The
Protestant claiming the Bible to be the only guide of faith, has no warrant for observing
Sunday. In this matter the Seventh-day Adventist is the only consistent
Protestant."--The Catholic Universe Bulletin, The official newspaper of the
Cleveland Diocese, Aug. 14, 1942, page 4.
"The Protestant says: 'How can I receive the teachings of an
apostate [Catholic] Church?' How, we ask, have you managed to receive her teaching all
your life, in direct opposition to your recognized teacher, the Bible, on the Sabbath
question?"--The Christian Sabbath, published by The Catholic Mirror, pages 29-30,
"Prove to me from the Bible alone that I am bound to keep
Sunday holy. There is no such law in the Bible. It is a law of the holy Catholic Church
alone. The Bible says 'Remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy.' The Catholic Church
says, No. By my divine power I abolish the Sabbath day and command you to keep holy the
first day of the week. And lo! The entire civilized world bows down in reverent obedience
to the command of the Holy Catholic Church."--Priest Thomas Enright, CSSR,
President of Redemptorist College, Kansas City, Mo., in a lecture at Hartford, Kansas,
February 18, 1884, and printed-in the Hartford, Kansas Weekly Call, February 22, 1884, and
the American Sentinel, a New York Roman Catholic journal in June 1893, page 173.
"Of course the Catholic Church claims that the change was her
act . . . AND THE ACT IS A MARK of her ecclesiastical power"--from the office of
Cardinal Gibbons, through Chancellor HF. Thomas, November 11, 1895.
One Hundred Thousand Dollars - Can you use it?
"Bible study is something that we today need more of. As we
prayerfully enter upon a study of the Word of God, we shall gain a better understanding of
His plan for our lives, and we shall be strengthened by faith in Jesus to seek it for our
"Part of God's plan for outlives is a return to the day lie
appointed for His worship--the Biblical Seventh-day Sabbath--in order that we may have
that closer experience so much needed for the trials and duties of each oncoming week.
"FOR THIS REASON, I HEREBY OFFER $100,000 TO ANYONE WHO WILL
GIVE ME ONE TEXT FROM THE BIBLE THAT PROVES THAT WE SHOULD KEEP SUNDAY THE FIRST DAY OF
THE WEEK INSTEAD OE SATURDAY THE SEVENTH DAY. In order to change the day of worship from
that which God commanded in Scripture, to any other day, we would need a definite Biblical
command of God before attempting such a thing.
"You may look for this text in any Bible in any language, but
the text itself must be readily located and clearly evident in all standard Bibles, such
as the King James Version. For this purpose, added notes or comments could not be
"It is our intention to continue this offer until it is
claimed, that there may be no question as to the teaching of the Bible in regard to this
important matter, We honor God when we obey Him. And His will for our lives is given in
"As long as this offer remains unclaimed, it will be a standing
witness to the fact that the Seventh-day Sabbath given at the Creation of this world
--continues to be the only true Sabbath for all of its inhabitants.
"You know, actually, the study of God's Word is worth far more
than any amount of money, isn't it? For we really want to know what the Bible says about
everything that might affect our lives. We surely wouldn't want to make a mistake, Jesus
once said, 'In vain they do worship Me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.'
Matthew 15:9, how important it must be in God's sight that we worship Him the way He told
us to. He has told us how to do it. We dare not change it to something that isn't in the
"And listen, won't you do this for me? If after studying your
Bible you decide that the Seventh day is still the Sabbath, the Bible Sabbath write and
let me know, won't you? Just to know of your decision will mean a lot . . . for I'll know
. . . it meant a lot . . . to you.
"For you see, Bible prophecy declares that there is a crisis
just ahead--when men will seek to enforce man-made laws that take the place of God's law,
Knowing your Bible for yourself will be your only safeguard in the crisis just ahead. For
it is only through a knowledge of Bible truth, and obedience to the laws of God through
the strength of Jesus, that you will be able to stand for the Bible Sabbath when the
powers of earth decree that you must keep a different day." Vance Ferrell
From radio broadcasts of Pilgrims' Rest, the Great Controversy
Broadcast--bringing special messages from the pen of inspiration--to a world on the edge
of a crisis--a crisis it is unprepared to meet.
A Special Message
I love you, My child. I died to save you. Whole worlds sink into
insignificance in comparison with your importance to Me. It was because of this that /
gave you the Sabbath-a special day to be with Me.
I know you are having problems. But unless you will put Me
first, I can't do for you all that you need. I want to do for you things that you can't do
for yourself--and so strengthen and ennoble you through obedience to My laws, that the
perplexities and fears you now face will vanish in the confidence of My presence.
Won't you set apart this one day--the only one I've spoken of in
this way--as dedicated time--time to be with Me in a special sense, a closer sense, than
all through the rest of the work-a-day week? Come now, My little one, let us reason
together. It's all in My written Word. A simple, beautiful plan. One that I have
personally laid out, by which you may be united with Me more closely than ever before. You
need it. You know you do. And I know it, too, Don't be afraid to trust yourself to Me.
Take Me at My Word. You will find I never go back on it. The same yesterday, today, and
forever--just as I have written in the book I gave you.
Come--begin that new walk--that better walk--with Me on My Day.
Not the day that someone down the street tells you is the Sabbath--but the day the Bible
that I gave you tells you is the Sabbath. My Word can change your life. And you need it.
The Sabbath rest--the Bible Sabbath rest--properly entered into--can bring you a new way
of life. It can bring happiness and peace you have never known before.
For, you see, as you surrender to My plan, you will find that
closeness with Me that you have been wanting for years. Though it always seemed so far
off, it was really just as near us My Word.
And now . . . it's time to get started. Don't be afraid. I'll
hold you by the hand and go with you. I have given you My promise; If you will stay with
Me and obey My Word--I will never leave you nor forsake you.
Come, My child
Let's begin it . . . together.
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Lesson 22 Additional Information