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Greek Word Study on 4521 σάββατον sabbaton Sabbath.
Hebrew Word Study on 7676 שַׁבָּת shabbat Sabbath.
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YOUTUBE VIDEO Who Changed the Sabbath Day to Sunday? 17 Minutes

Introduction 5.1

This bible study answers the question, 'Who changed the Sabbath to Sunday?' This section has been separated from the rest of the study because it is attempting to answer questions which the scripture alone does not answer. The answers can be obtained from secular history - but as such history is not scripture; it cannot be trusted as scripture, and history that contradicts scripture is not acceptable evidence. It is advisable therefore to be careful when reading this section, even though there has been an attempt made to stick to scriptural principles [such as: "In the mouth of two or three witnesses every word shall be established" (2 Corinthians 13:1)] while compiling these answers.


#5.11 Secular Legislation for Changing the Sabbath to Sunday

There was no change made from the Sabbath to Sunday in the time of the apostles. However, after the death of the apostles, Sunday was substituted for the Sabbath day through the commandment of men, but not by any commandment of God. It is possible that the transfer may have taken place gradually after the death of the apostles, but concerning secular or church legislation history records the following.

"Unquestionably the first law, either ecclesiastical or civil, by which the sabbatical observance of Sunday is known to have been ordained is the sabbatical edict of Constantine, A.D. 32I."
Chambers' Encyclopedia, Article "Sunday".

Here is the first Sunday Law in history, a legal enactment by Constantine 1 (reigned 306-331):

"On the Venerable Day of the Sun ["venerabili die Solis"--the sacred day of the Sun] let the magistrates and people residing in cities rest, and let all workshops be closed. In the country, however, persons engaged in agriculture may freely and lawfully continue their pursuits; because it often happens that another day is not so suitable for grain-sowing or for vine-planting; lest by neglecting the proper moment for such operations the bounty of heaven should be lost--Given the 7th day of March, [A.D. 321], Crispus and Constantine being consuls each of them for the second time."
The First Sunday Law of Constantine 1, in "Codex Justinianus," lib. 3, tit. 12, 3; trans. in Phillip Schaff "History of the Christian Church" Vol. 3, p. 380.

What did Constantine's law require?

"Let all the judges and town people, and the occupation of all trades rest on the venerable day of the sun; but let those who are situated in the country, freely and at full liberty attend to the business of agriculture; because it often happens that no other day is so fit for sowing corn and planting vines; lest the critical moment being let slip, men should lose the commodities granted by Heaven."
Translated from the original edict in Latin, now in Harvard College U.S.A.

Constantine's empire was predominantly for Sun worship, so this was not a law to favor Christianity, but rather the "venerable day of the sun", which was the day of the dominating sun worship religion of that time.

#5.12 Church Legislation for Changing the Sabbath to Sunday

The Church of that day, then followed suit, and legislated on Sunday worship at the Council of Laodicea.

"The Council of Laodicea ... forbids Christians from judaizing and resting on the Sabbath day, preferring the Lord's day, and so far as possible resting as Christians."
Encyclopedia Britannica, 1899 Edition, Vol. XXIII, page 654.

Here is the first Sunday Law decree of a Christian council. It was given about 16 years after Constantine's first Sunday Law of A.D. 321.

"Christians shall not Judaize and be idle on Saturday [in the original: "sabbato" shall not be idle on the Sabbath], but shall work on that day; but the Lord's day they shall especially honor, and as being Christians, shall, if possible, do no work on that day. If, however, they are found judaizing, they shall be shut out ["anathema,"--excommunicated] from Christ."
Council of Laodicea, c. A.D. 337, Canon 29, quoted in C.J. Hefele, "A History of the Councils of the Church," Vol. 2, p. 316.

By the term "Judaize" they mean keeping the Sabbath day. By the term "the Lord's day" they mean Sunday, which seems to have become a term for that day, although there is no scriptural basis for calling it so.

Note 1: Paul and Peter both predicted false teachers would come after their death.

(Acts 20:29-30) "For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock.
Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them."
(1 Timothy 4:1) "Now the Spirit speaks expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of demons."
(2 Peter 2:1-2) "But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privately shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction.
And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of."

Doctrines of Demons and False teachers: They teach that Jesus rose on Sunday, and that Sunday is the day of worship and rest.
Privately shall bring in damnable heresies: In the privacy of the council of Laodicea, they substituted Sunday for the Sabbath.
Denying the Lord: It was Jesus who said, "keep the commandments" (Matthew 19:17), "but in works they deny him," (Titus 1:16), by not keeping them.
Many shall follow their pernicious ways: Almost all of Christianity keeps Sunday as a day of worship, instead of the Sabbath.
The way of truth shall be evil spoken of: Almost all of Christianity speaks against keeping the Sabbath commandment, which is the truth (Psalm 119:151).
The scripture has this to say on the matter:

(Romans 6:16) "Do you not know, that to whom you yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants you are to whom you obey."
So who are we obeying when we keep Sunday as a day of worship instead of Saturday?

(1) We are obeying men, because men changed the Sabbath commandment for Sunday, and we are told not to do this.

(Acts 5:29) "Then Peter and the other apostles answered and said, We ought to obey God rather than men."
(1 Corinthians 7:23) "You are bought with a price; do not you be the servants of men."

God commanded the Sabbath, and men commanded Sunday.

(2) We are obeying the spirit of Antichrist, because it is the Antichrist, who will "think to change times and laws" (Daniel 7:25). This spirit was already in the world in the time of the apostles, for John wrote, "this is that spirit of antichrist, of which you have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world" (1 John 4:3). The spirit of antichrist is really the spirit of the Devil, because he is the one who gives the antichrist his authority:

(Revelation 13:2) "the dragon gave him his power, and his seat, and great authority."

Therefore, when we obey the commandments of men (keeping Sunday), which is inspired by the spirit of antichrist, we are really bowing to Satan because we keep his law instead of God's.

Note 2: Jesus had things to say about honoring man's tradition.

(Matthew 15:1-9) "Then came to Jesus scribes and Pharisees, which were of Jerusalem, saying,
2 Why do your disciples transgress the tradition of the elders? for they do not wash their hands when they eat bread.
3 But he answered and said to them, Why do you also transgress the commandment of God by your tradition?
4 For God commanded, saying, Honor your father and mother: and, He who curses father or mother, let him die the death.
5 But you say, Whoever shall say to his father or his mother, It is a gift, by whatever you might be profited by me;
6 And does not honor his father or his mother, he shall be free. Thus you have made the commandment of God of no effect by your tradition.
7 You hypocrites, well did Isaiah prophesy of you, saying,
8 This people draws near to me with their mouth, and honors me with their lips; but their heart is far from me.
9 But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men."

Jesus severely rebuked the Pharisees, and called them hypocrites (v7), for pretending to love God, while at the same time breaking one of the Ten Commandments by their tradition. Where does this leave you dear reader? Do you say that you love God, while at the same time break the Sabbath commandment? Are you honoring the tradition of men (keeping Sunday), or honoring the commandment of God (keeping the Sabbath)?

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