What is the Lord’s Day?


What Day is the Lord’s Day?
Revelation 1:10
I was in the Spirit on the Lord’s Day, and I heard behind me a loud voice like the sound of the trumpet.

Many people say the Lord’s Day is the First Day of the week-Sunday. Is this because the Bible defines Sunday as the Lord’s Day or is it because of the tradition of man? Many say Sunday is the Lord’s Day is because of Resurrection Sunday. But again, is this what the Bible says or the tradition of man? We are looking to the Bible, not man, for the answer.

Does God Himself call a certain day ‘His day’?

Genesis 2:2-3
“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.”

Exodus 20:8-11
“Remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy. Six days shalt thou labor, and do all thy work: but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord thy God.” “For 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.”

Isaiah 58:13
If thou turn away thy foot from the sabbath,
From doing thy pleasure on my holy day;
And call the sabbath a delight,
The holy of the LORD, honourable;
And shalt honour him, not doing thine own ways,
Nor finding thine own pleasure, nor speaking thine own words:

Matthew 12:8
“For the Son of man is Lord even of the Sabbath Day

Summary
•    God blessed and sanctified the seventh day-the Sabbath. Nowhere in Scripture did God bless or sanctify the first day or any other day.

•    God says to remember the Sabbath day and said keep it holy. Nowhere in Scripture did God say to remember and keep holy the first day or any other day.

•    God hallowed the Sabbath day. Nowhere in Scripture did God hallow the first day or any other day.

•    God called the Sabbath his holy day. Nowhere in Scripture did God call the first day his holy day or any other day.

•    Jesus is called the Lord of the Sabbath Day. Jesus is not called the Lord of the first day or any other day.

What Scriptures talk about the first day of the week?
1 Corinthians 16:2
 Now concerning the collection for the saints, as I directed the churches of Galatia, so do you also. 2 On the first day of every week each one of you is to [a]put aside and save, as he may prosper, so that no collections be made when I come. 3 When I arrive, whomever you may approve, I will send them with letters to carry your gift to Jerusalem; 4 and if it is fitting for me to go also, they will go with me.

It is clear that the Corinthians were to set aside money on the first day of the week. They were to save it. Why? So when Paul came no collection would be made.

What day did Paul come? If he came on the first day they would need to set aside fairly early since he would most likely come early instead of later. Does that not seem like last minute if he is saying “so that no collections be made when I come”.

Could Corinthians have church on the first day? Possibly but does not say it was a holy or blessed day.
Also why is there nowhere in Scriptures the Jews complained about Paul or the Gentile Christians not keeping the Sabbath? They complained about many things about the Gentiles but nothing about the Sabbath or making the first day more important than the Sabbath.

What day was it Paul’s custom to meet for spiritual meetings?
Acts 17:1-2
Now when they had traveled through Amphipolis and Apollonia, they came to Thessalonica, where there was a synagogue of the Jews. 2 And according to Paul’s custom, he went to them, and for three Sabbaths reasoned with them from the Scriptures,
This certainly does not mean Paul only met on the Sabbath Day.

What about the early Christians?
Acts 16:13
And on the Sabbath day we went outside the gate to a riverside, where we were supposing that there would be a place of prayer; and we sat down and began speaking to the women who had assembled.
This certainly does not mean this is the only day the Christians prayed but it appears to be a custom because they assumed they would find Christians praying on Sabbath at the river-it was a place of prayer.

Paul preach on First Day of the Week
Acts 20:7-12
On the first day of the week, when we were gathered together to break bread, Paul began talking to them, intending to leave the next day, and he prolonged his message until midnight. 8 There were many lamps in the upper room where we were gathered together. 9 And there was a young man named Eutychus sitting on the window sill, sinking into a deep sleep; and as Paul kept on talking, he was overcome by sleep and fell down from the third floor and was picked up dead. 10 But Paul went down and fell upon him, and after embracing him, he said, “Do not be troubled, for his life is in him.” 11 When he had gone back up and had broken the bread and eaten, he talked with them a long while until daybreak, and then left. 12 They took away the boy alive, and were greatly comforted.
According to Jewish custom the day starts after sundown. So the first day of the week starts 6pm on Saturday and ends 6pm Sunday.  If the first day of the week applies to Sunday then Paul would be preaching up to midnight on Sunday. He would have had to start before 6pm on Sunday for him to have started preaching on the first day.

Or this could have been what happened:
Paul was at the church on Saturday and after sundown they broke bread. It would be the first day of the week starting sundown on Saturday. He preached Saturday night till midnight.

Whichever day Paul started preaching, nothing in this passage says anything about the Lord’s Day. Either way the first day of the week is not called holy, hallowed, etc.

So there is nothing in Scripture that states the Sabbath Day (Seventh Day), God’s holy day was changed from Saturday to Sunday. So how did Sunday, the First Day of the week, get changed to be the Lord’s Day? By man, not God.

In our next lesson we will look at who, or what group, changed the Lord’s Day to Sunday?

Richard D. Dover

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