ON WHAT DAY WAS JESUS
In other words, was Jesus resurrected on SUNDAY, the FIRST DAY of the week?
Was Jesus resurrected on the SABBATH DAY, the SEVENTH DAY of the week?
The purpose of this study in God's word is to closely examine all the scriptures referring to the resurrection of Jesus to see what the WHOLE word of God has to say concerning the DAY of the week that Jesus rose from the grave.
Some Christians say that Jesus was placed in the tomb on Friday just before sunset and the start of the weekly Sabbath day, and rose from the grave on SUNDAY which would be the FIRST day of the week.
But other Christians argue and say that this cannot be true, because the word of God also says that Jesus was to be in the heart of the earth for three FULL nights AND three FULL days. Therefore it is impossible for Jesus to have been buried on a Friday AND rise from the dead on SUNDAY the FIRST day of the week, because there are NOT three full days and three full night between Friday evening and Sunday morning.
Now I happen to agree with this LOGIC that there are NOT three full nights and three full days between Friday evening and Sunday morning. But rather than basing our faith on LOGIC only let us examine more closely all the scriptures that speak of the resurrection of Jesus and see what the WHOLE word of God has to say on the subject of WHEN Jesus was raised from the dead.
For you see, even though there are many Christians who believe that Jesus was crucified on Wednesday and laid in the tomb just before sunset, which is the starting of a NEW day and that new day being Thursday was a HIGH Sabbath day there is still a debate as to whether Jesus rose from the grave on SATURDAY, the WEEKLY Sabbath, or whether Jesus rose from the dead on SUNDAY the FIRST day of the week.
Many Christians who keep the Sabbath day as opposed to worshiping God on Sunday argue and desperately try and prove that the resurrection of Jesus took place on SATURDAY, the 7th day of the week being the weekly Sabbath day, because then they can claim the Sabbath day is the LORD'S DAY. Those who teach that Christians must keep the Sabbath day feel that if they can prove that Jesus rose from the grave on Saturday in the late afternoon just before sunset, which is the weekly Sabbath day, then they will have more evidence to try and prove that Christians must without fail keep the Sabbath day
So then, let us begin this study in God's word by taking a closer look at Matthew 21:1-7 and see what the word of TRUTH, the whole word of God teaches us to be the DAY of the week in which Jesus rose from the grave. Was it on SATURDAY, the weekly Sabbath day, or did Jesus rise from the grave on SUNDAY, the FIRST DAY of the week, commonly called by most Christians as the LORD'S DAY?
Now those Christians who teach that we must keep the Sabbath day according to the law of Moses argue that Jesus was ALREADY RISEN from the dead before any one ever arrived at the tomb on the first day of the week. So therefore the reason that the tomb was empty is that Jesus must have risen from the grave on SATURDAY, the SABBATH day.
But is this what the whole word of God teaches us? The first thing that I want to point out to you, the seeker of the TRUTH is the weekly Sabbath day, being the 7th day of the week had already ENDED and it was beginning to DAWN on the FIRST day of the week when Mary Magdalene and others came to the tomb to anoint the body of Jesus only to find that the STONE had been rolled back and Jesus had RISEN from the dead.
For those of you who may be unfamiliar with when the STARTING of a new day begins the Bible tells us in Leviticus 23:32 that each new day began at sunset and ended at the next sunset.
Leviticus 23:32 from the English Standard Version.
"...from EVENING to EVENING shall you keep your Sabbath."
So then, since we know that Jesus was placed in the tomb just before the start of the sabbath day right at sunset that evening the on the DAY that he was crucified. And since we also know that Jesus was in the heart of the earth three full days and three full night AND that there are NOT three full days and three full nights between Friday EVENING and SUNDAY morning, then we can safely conclude that Jesus did NOT die on a Friday as some falsely teach.
Therefore let us begin by assuming that Jesus was crucified on a Wednesday and that on Wednesday EVENING just BEFORE the setting of the sun, which would START the new day Thursday, being a HIGH Sabbath day that particular year, Jesus was laid in the tomb and the tomb was sealed. But how do we know that Jesus was crucified the evening before a HIGH Sabbath and that it was NOT a WEEKLY Sabbath as many falsely teach? Please read John 19:31, which clearly and plainly teaches us that THAT DAY on which Jesus was crucified was on a PREPARATION day or the day BEFORE a HIGH DAY or a HIGH Sabbath day.
"The Jews therefore, because it was the PREPARATION (the day BEFORE the Sabbath day), that the bodies should not remain upon the cross on the SABBATH day, (for THAT sabbath day was an HIGH day,) besought Pilate that their legs might be broken, and that they might be taken away."
Here is John 19:31 from the New Living Translation.
"The Jewish leaders didn't want the victims hanging there the NEXT day, which was the Sabbath (and a very special Sabbath at that, because it was the Passover), so they asked Pilate to hasten their deaths by ordering that their legs be broken. Then their bodies could be taken down."
There are seven ANNUAL feasts of the Lord that are observed by the Jews every year on time a year. And they are called SABBATHS. One of these ANNUAL SABBATH days was PASSOVER. Please read the study called "THE FEAST DAYS OF THE LORD" for a deeper understanding on the feast days. But for now just know that the Passover LAMB was KILLED on the 14th DAY of the first month of the Jewish year. Then the NEXT day was a yearly SABBATH day called the first day of unleavened bread. Please read Leviticus 23:4-
7. In the FIRST day you shall have an holy convocation: you shall do no servile work therein.(In other words, the very FIRST day of this seven day feast of unleavened bread was a SABBATH day, which means a day of REST)
8. But you shall offer an offering made by fire unto the LORD seven days: in the SEVENTH day is an holy convocation: you shall do no servile work therein. (In other words, BOTH the FIRST day and the last day of unleavened bread were SABBATH days)"
So then the 15th day, the day AFTER Jesus was KILLED as the LAMB of God fro the sins of the world was a YEARLY SABBATH day called a HIGH day. Let us continue this study in God's word assuming that Jesus was crucified on WEDNESDAY the 14th day of the first month of the Jesus calendar. The name of this month is called Nissan or Abib.
So then, from sunset Wednesday to sunrise on Thursday was ONE NIGHT.
And from sunrise Thursday to sunset Thursday was ONE DAY.
Then from sunset Thursday to sunrise Friday morning was TWO NIGHTS.
And from sunrise Friday to sunset Friday was TWO DAYS.
Then from sunset Friday to sunrise Saturday morning was THREE NIGHTS.
And from sunrise Saturday to sunset Saturday was THREE DAYS.
Please keep in mind that Jesus needed to be in the heart of the earth three FULL days and three FULL nights to fulfill the scriptures. Also keep in mind that on SUNSET that Saturday being the completion of the THIRD DAY. Therefore in order for the three FULL nights and three FULL days to be fully COMPLETED it then is needed for Jesus to RESURRECTED sometime AFTER sunset of the THIRD day which is the BEGINNING of the FIRST day of the week just like the word of TRUTH clearly and plainly teaches us in Mark 16:19.
Please notice that the word of TRUTH does NOT say the Jesus was risen LATE in the afternoon of the SEVENTH day of the week as some falsely teach. But rather the CLEAR, PLAIN, and SIMPLE word of Almighty God states that Jesus was risen EARLY the FIRST DAY of the week, which is SUNDAY.
Now again some Sabbath keepers like to argue that Jesus was raised from the dead just BEFORE sunset and therefore rose from the grave on the SABBATH day. They argue that Jesus was laid in the tomb just BEFORE sunset on Wednesday evening, so therefore just BEFORE sunset on SATURDAY evening would be exactly 72 hours which they say is three FULL days and three FULL nights.
Yes it is true that 72 hours does equal in TIME to be three full days and three full nights. However, Jesus did not say that he would be in the heart of the earth 72 hours, but rather that he would be in the heart of the earth three full days and three full nights. Please read Matthew 12:38-40, which says,
This does NOT mean that we can take the last PART of the one day Wednesday just before sunset and then ADD it to Saturday that is just short of being a FULL day, because you want the resurrection to take place just before sunset before that Sabbath ENDS. You cannot take from one day and then add it to another day in order to MAKE it a full day so that Jesus can be made to appear to have risen on a SATURDAY the Sabbath day rather than on the FIRST day of the week like the word of TRUTH clearly teaches.
So then, it is NOT a CORRECT assumption or interpretation of the word of God to claim that Jesus rose from the grave on SATURDAY late in the afternoon based upon the WHOLE word of God? The next thing I want you to notice in Matthew 28:1-7 is verses 1 and 2 together.
2. And, behold, there was a great EARTHQUAKE: for (or because) the angel of the Lord descended from heaven, and came and ROLLED BACK the STONE from the door, and sat upon it."
Again please notice that the word of God CLEARLY and PLAINLY says that the Sabbath had ENDED and that it was DAWNING toward the FIRST day of the week that Mary Magdalene and the other Mary came to the tomb of Jesus.
It other words, it was just before SUNRISE on the FIRST day of the week that they came to the tomb to see Jesus, but the tomb was ALREADY empty. Now IF this was all the word of God told us, then it could certainly reasonably be argued that Jesus MAY have risen from the dead just before MIDNIGHT the beginning of Sunday according to the way we keep time today and therefore Jesus MIGHT have risen on the 7th day of the week.
However, that is NOT how the Bible ITSELF keeps time. Remember that the new day starts at sundown. Also please notice that the word of God goes on to say in verse 2,
"2. And, behold, there was a great EARTHQUAKE: FOR (or BECAUSE) the angel of the Lord descended from heaven, and came and ROLLED BACK the STONE from the door, and sat upon it."
And BEHOLD or look closely and SEE, there was a great EARTHQUAKE at the time Jesus ROSE from the grave, because the angel of the Lord descended from heaven to ROLL BACK the great stone that sealed the tomb. We know without a doubt that this great earthquake occurred at the time of the resurrection of Jesus for three reasons.
First it is recorded for us here in Matthew 28:2 as occurring just before DAWN of the FIRST day of the week.
Second it took place as a result of the resurrection itself and the angel rolling back the heavy stone so that those coming to anoint Jesus could see that he had just risen from the dead and that the tomb was now EMPTY.
And thirdly if we back up a few verses to the previous chapter we will see that at this time of this great EARTHQUAKE that not only Jesus rose from the grave but many others also rose from the dead with Jesus. Please read Matthew 27:50-54 where we see an earthquake taking place when Jesus gave up the ghost and died on the cross AND another great earthquake taking place when Jesus was RESURRECTED from the dead.
Now at first it seems that there is only one earthquake which takes place at the moment Jesus dies, but if this were true, then why is another earthquake mention just before DAWN of the FIRST day of the week the very moment as Mary Magdalene and the other Mary approached the tomb where Jesus had been laid?
In verse 54 we see that the centurion that was WATCHING Jesus SAW the EARTHQUAKE and THOSE THINGS that were done and greatly feared. Some may try and argue that this verse is speaking of the earthquake and those things that were done at the CRUCIFIXION of Jesus when he cried out to God and DIED.
Now while this is also true please keep in mind that the Jewish leaders went to Pilate and asked him to post soldiers at the tomb to WATCH Jesus so that no one would try and steal the body of Jesus and just claim that Jesus rose from the dead.
Please read Matthew 27:59-66 which says,
64. Command therefore that the sepulcher be made SURE until the THIRD day, lest his disciples come by night, and steal him away, and say unto the people, He is risen from the dead: so the last error shall be worse than the first.
66. So they went, and made the sepulcher SURE, SEALING the stone, and setting a WATCH."
Again the day of preparation was Wednesday just before the HIGH Sabbath day so the NEXT day would be the High Sabbath day the these Jewish leaders went to Pilate to have him set guards to WATCH the body of Jesus and make sure the tomb was sealed and secure until AFTER the third day had ended.
WHY would they take a chance and remove the guards or unseal the tomb BEFORE sunset that THIRD DAY? They would not have removed these guards until AFTER the THIRD DAY had ENDED. And most likely to be safe they would have secured the tomb an extra day. Keep in mind that they came to Pilate the NEXT day and commanded him to seal the tomb until the THIRD day. The question remains was it from that day the day after the preparation that the counted three days? If so then a WATCH would have been set until sunset on SUNDAY which would have been the starting of MONDAY the 2nd day of the week.
Either way we know that there were centurions WATCHING the body of Jesus so that no one could steal the body of Jesus and falsely claim the Jesus rose from the dead. And while these Romans soldier were on their WATCH is WHEN the angel came to roll back the stone and the great earthquake took place, because the word of God tells us that the SOLDIERS that were WATCHING the tomb took money to spread the lie that the disciples of Jesus stole to body of Jesus. Please read Matthew 27:11-15.
"Now when they were going, behold, some of the WATCH (which probably included some Jews along with the soldiers provided by Pilate) came into the city, and showed unto the chief priests all the things that were done.
13. Saying, Say you, His disciples came by night, and stole him away while we slept.(Now it is doubtful that people went to bed to sleep BEFORE sunset to be sound asleep so that they would not know if the body of Jesus was stolen or not. The word says while they slept at NIGHT so it was AFTER sunset of the seventh day, which would make it the FIRST day of the week that Jesus was raised from the dead.)
So then, there were SOLDIERS guarding the body of Jesus until AFTER the three FULL days and three FULL nights had PAST completely and they were there WHEN the great earthquake took place and they saw bodies rise from the grave with Jesus. Again there is NO WAY that these soldiers left their post BEFORE three FULL days and three FULL nights had completely PAST.
Also please notice in verse 63 that Jesus said AFTER three days he would RISE from the dead.
"63. Saying, Sir, we remember that that deceiver said, while he was yet alive, AFTER three days I will rise again.
So then, AFTER three FULL days and three FULL nights would without any doubt whatsoever place the resurrection of Jesus on SUNDAY just before SUNRISE the FIRST day of the week as the word of TRUTH clearly and plainly teaches. Now some may try and argue that it was the JEWS who CLAIMED that the heard Jesus say that he would rise from the dead AFTER three days, but the word of God says that Jesus will be resurrected ON the THIRD day.
Yes there are verses that do in fact say that Jesus will rise from the dead ON the THIRD day. But again this is NOT what the WHOLE word of God teaches us, because Jesus did in fact teach that he would rise AFTER three days as well.
Please read Mark 8:27-32, which CLEARLY and PLAINLY teaches us who are seeking the TRUTH of the WHOLE word of God that Jesus taught OPENLY this saying that he would rise AFTER three days, which would make it IMPOSSIBLE for Jesus to have risen on Saturday the Sabbath day as some FALSELY teach.
32. And he (Jesus) spoke that saying OPENLY. And Peter took him, and began to rebuke him."
In other words, even though it is not recorded very much as being plainly stated as AFTER three days that Jesus would rise from the grave, it is made blatantly clear to us that Jesus HIMSELF spoke this saying OPENLY that AFTER three days he would rise from the grave. So then, the Jews heard Jesus CORRECTLY that he would rise again from the dead AFTER three full days and three FULL nights being DEAD and buried in the tomb.
The word of God is very clear to all those seeking to know the TRUTH of the whole word of God that Jesus rose from the grave AFTER the Sabbath has PAST. Please read Mark 16:1,2, and which clearly and plainly teaches us that Jesus rose from the grave AFTER the third day which is AFTER the Sabbath had already PAST.
Now for those of you who may be wondering what does it matter on which day that Jesus rose from the grave, the important point is that he ROSE from the dead! And I whole heartily agree that the real issue is that Jesus conquered death and the grave for us.
The reason that I am writing this study is that there are Christians, who are compelling other Christians to keep ALL the law of God contained in some 613 carnal ordinances written to the children of Israel in the Old Testament under the OLD COVENANT. And some of these Sabbath keeping Christians are FALSELY teaching Christians that it is a matter of SALVATION that a Christian must without fail keep ALL the law of Moses in order to be saved. And IF a Christians FAIL to KEEP the Sabbath day according to the law of Moses then they will be sinning and not receive eternal life in the world to come. So by CLAIMING that the Lord's day is the seventh day of the week as opposed to the FIRST day of the week they SUBVERT some Christians into keeping the SEVENTH day Sabbath rest as the Jews.
Those that teach that Christians must keep all the law of Moses REASON that IF they can PROVE that Jesus rose from the grave on SATURDAY, the 7th day of the week, which would be the SABBATH day, then they could claim that the Sabbath day is the LORD'S DAY and thus prove that Christians, who worship on Sunday are SINNING by not worshiping on the true Lord's day, which they CLAIM is Saturday the SEVENTH day of the week.
Now IF these Sabbath Keepers were to be successful in PROVING without a doubt that Jesus rose from the grave on SATURDAY rather than on SUNDAY, then this would make it possible for more Christians to be DECEIVED into TRYING to keep ALL the law of God written in the Old Testament under the OLD covenant, which none in the Old Testament were able to keep except Jesus himself.
This is the reason why I am going to the WHOLE word of God to teach you, the seeker of the TRUTH, that Jesus did in fact rise from the grave on SUNDAY the FIRST DAY of the week and this is why we as Christians call SUNDAY the LORD'S DAY.
I want you to be thoroughly rooted and grounded in the TRUTH of the whole word of God lest you be DECEIVED by FALSE teachers, who are teaching a DIFFERENT gospel whereby we must be saved.
Please read the studies called "SUNDAY WORSHIP VERSUS SABBATH KEEPING?", which shows that the early church worshiped on Sunday. Also another good study is "ONLY NINE of the TEN COMMANDMENTS?", which shows that only nine of the ten commandments are repeated and taught for us as Christians to keep. Many Christians are DECEIVED when they are tripped up by knowing that we are to keep the COMMANDMENTS of God, but then realize that they are not worshiping God on SATURDAY. This is one of the biggest deception used by the enemy to DECEIVE believers into trying to obey ALL the law written in the Old Testament contained in some 613 carnal ordinances. It all BEGINS with the mandatory keeping of the 7th day SABBATH. This study explains that the Sabbath was FULFILLED at the cross and now Jesus has become our REST.
But for now let us continue this study in God's word that teaches us that Jesus was in the heart of the earth three FULL days and three FULL nights and AFTER these three days Jesus rose from the grave on the FIRST day of the week.
Please read Mark 16:1-9, which again CLEARLY and PLAINLY teaches us that Jesus rose from the grave on the FIRST day of the week, which was SUNDAY and NOT on Saturday as some FALSELY teach. And again there is NO INTERPRETATION needed. The word of God is CLEAR, PLAIN, and SIMPLE.
9. Now WHEN Jesus was risen EARLY the FIRST day of the week, (which again is SUNDAY and NOT the Sabbath day as some FALSELY teach) he appeared first to Mary Magdalene, out of whom he had cast seven devils."
Now I did not write these words. The Apostles of Jesus who were eyewitnesses wrote these words saying, WHEN Jesus was risen EARLY the FIRST day of the week,
This is NOT someone's interpretation or opinion, but rather the disciples of Jesus stating plainly as FACT with no interpretation needed that WHEN Jesus was risen was EARLY the FIRST day of the week.
So again in Mark 16:1,2, and 9 we clearly see that the weekly Sabbath day had ENDED and was PAST when Mary Magdalene and the others came to the tomb to find that Jesus had RISEN from the grave EARLY the FIRST DAY of the week. Not Only had the SABBATH already PAST, but it was very NEAR SUNRISE of the next day, which would have been 12 hours AFTER the Sabbath had ENDED when they saw the great EARTHQUAKE, while COMING to the tomb to find it EMPTY.
2. And very early in the morning the FIRST day of the week, they came unto the sepulcher AT the rising of the sun....
9. Now WHEN Jesus was risen EARLY the FIRST day of the week, (which again is SUNDAY and NOT the Sabbath day as some FALSELY teach) he appeared first to Mary Magdalene, out of whom he had cast seven devils."
This means that Jesus rose from the grave AFTER the weekly Sabbath, which would have fulfilled not only the scriptures saying that Jesus would be in the heart of the earth three FULL days and three FULL nights, but ALSO fulfills the scripture where Jesus HIMSELF plainly states that he would rise again AFTER these three days.
Again please keep in mind that the very word of God CLEARLY and PLAINLY states straight out that Jesus rose from the grave on the FIRST day of the week. Please read Mark 16:9 again.
9. 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."
Again there is absolutely NO interpretation needed to understand without a doubt that Jesus rose from the grave on the FIRST day of the week, which is SUNDAY also called the LORD'S DAY throughout church history from the very beginning, which we will clearly see shortly directly from some early church writers.
So in conclusion I myself believe that Jesus was CRUCIFIED on a WEDNESDAY and the rose from the grave on SUNDAY, the FIRST day of the week AFTER being in the heart of the earth for three FULL days and three FULL nights just like the WHOLE word of God clearly and plainly teaches.
Below are some quotes of early church writers that clearly teach us that the early church did NOT keep the Sabbath day, as in, on SATURDAY the 7th day of the week, but rather the early church throughout history from it's beginning worshiped God on SUNDAY the 1st day of the week, which is sometimes referred to as the 8th day of the week or the day AFTER the Sabbath day. The emphasis is mine,
The date is given first and the source is given at the end.
#1. 90AD DIDACHE:
"Christian Assembly on the Lord's Day:
1. But every Lord's day do ye gather yourselves together, and break bread, and give thanksgiving after having confessed your transgressions, that your sacrifice may be pure.
2. But let no one that is at variance with his fellow come together with you, until they be reconciled, that your sacrifice may not be profaned.
3. For this is that which was spoken by the Lord: In every place and time offer to me a pure sacrifice; for I am a great King, saith the Lord, and my name is wonderful among the nations." (Didache: The Teaching of the Twelve Apostles, Chapter XIV)
#2. 100 AD BARNABAS:
"We keep the eighth day [Sunday] with joyfulness, the day also on which Jesus rose again from the dead" (The Epistle of Barnabas, 100 AD 15:6-8).
#3. 100 AD BARNABAS:
Moreover God says to the Jews, 'Your new moons and Sabbaths I cannot endure.' You see how he says, 'The present Sabbaths are not acceptable to me, but the Sabbath which I have made in which, when I have rested [heaven: Heb 4] from all things, I will make the beginning of the eighth day which is the beginning of another world.' Wherefore we Christians keep the eighth day for joy, on which also Jesus arose from the dead and when he appeared ascended into heaven. (15:8f, The Epistle of Barnabas, 100 AD, Ante-Nicene Fathers , vol. 1, pg. 147)
#4. 110AD Pliny:
They were in the habit of meeting on a certain fixed day before it was light, when they sang in alternate verses a hymn to Christ, as to a god, and bound themselves by a solemn oath not to (do) any wicked deeds, never to commit any fraud, theft, or adultery, never to falsify their word, nor deny a trust when they should be called upon to deliver it up; after which it was their custom to separate, and then reassemble to partake of good food—but food of an ordinary and innocent kind. (About three years after the death of Ignatius in 250, an important official communication was sent from one Pliny to Trajan the Roman emperor. Pliny, the Roman governor of Bithynia, wrote of the Christians who had been congregating there probably from at least A.D. 62 onwards. In this remarkable it is explicitly stated that these early Christians observed the substance of most of the Ten Commandments, and it is implied that they observed all ten as far as they were able to do so. As far as they were able, for as most of the early Christians were of slave stock or from other lower classes'-, and those who had heathen masters or employers—the vast majority—would be forced to work on their day of rest, which was unfortunately an official working day throughout the empires' until Constantine's "Sabbath" Edict in 321 A.D. gave them some measure of public protection. Hence one reads that after meeting "on a certain fixed day before it was light", the first century Bithynian Christians had "to separate"—many of them having to labour for their masters and/or employers from dawn to dusk—"and then reassemble to partake of . . . food". The "certain fixed day" [stato die"'] on which the Christians met, is regarded by Seventh-day Adventists as Saturday'-. Certainly the expression would seem to indicate a regular day of meeting, probably each week. But Sunday is far more likely to have been the "certain fixed day" than Saturday. For if Pliny had been referring to the old Saturday Sabbath, as a Roman he would doubtless have referred to the "later" meeting first and only then to the morning meeting on the day after the "certain fixed day", seeing that the old Saturday Sabbath was demarcated from the evening of one day to the evening of the following day. But Pliny makes no such reference. Instead, he mentions that the pre-dawn meeting took place first—and only after wards the later meeting; and that both meetings took place on the same "certain fixed day". This rather points to the Roman (and—more importantly!—New Testament) midnight to midnight demarcation of modern Sunday-keepers than to the evening to evening demarcation of the Jews and the Seventh-day Adventists. (The Covenantial Sabbath, Francis Nigel Lee, Pg 242)
#5. 150AD EPISTLE OF THE APOSTLES:
- I [Christ] have come into being on the eighth day which is the day of the Lord. (18)
#6. 150AD JUSTIN:
"He then speaks of those Gentiles, namely us, who in every place offer sacrifices to Him, i.e., the bread of the Eucharist, and also the cup of the Eucharist, affirming both that we glorify His name, and that you profane [it]. The command of circumcision, again, bidding [them] always circumcise the children on the eighth day, was a type of the true circumcision, by which we are circumcised from deceit and iniquity through Him who rose from the dead on the first day after the Sabbath, [namely through] our Lord Jesus Christ. For the first day after the Sabbath, remaining the first of all the days, is called, however, the eighth, according to the number of all the days of the cycle, and [yet] remains the first.". (Justin, Dialogue 41:4)
#7. 150AD JUSTIN:
...those who have persecuted and do persecute Christ, if they do not repent, shall not inherit anything on the holy mountain. But the Gentiles, who have believed on Him, and have repented of the sins which they have committed, they shall receive the inheritance along with the patriarchs and the prophets, and the just men who are descended from Jacob, even although they neither keep the Sabbath, nor are circumcised, nor observe the feasts. Assuredly they shall receive the holy inheritance of God. (Dialogue With Trypho the Jew, 150-165 AD, Ante-Nicene Fathers , vol. 1, page 207)
#8. 150AD JUSTIN:
But if we do not admit this, we shall be liable to fall into foolish opinion, as if it were not the same God who existed in the times of Enoch and all the rest, who neither were circumcised after the flesh, nor observed Sabbaths, nor any other rites, seeing that Moses enjoined such observances... For if there was no need of circumcision before Abraham, or of the observance of Sabbaths, of feasts and sacrifices, before Moses; no more need is there of them now, after that, according to the will of God, Jesus Christ the Son of God has been born without sin, of a virgin sprung from the stock of Abraham. (Dialogue With Trypho the Jew, 150-165 AD, Ante-Nicene Fathers , vol. 1, page 206)
#9. 150AD JUSTIN:
Moreover, all those righteous men already mentioned [after mentioning Adam. Abel, Enoch, Lot, Noah, Melchizedek, and Abraham], though they kept no Sabbaths, were pleasing to God; and after them Abraham with all his descendants until Moses... And you [fleshly Jews] were commanded to keep Sabbaths, that you might retain the memorial of God. For His word makes this announcement, saying, "That you may know that I am God who redeemed you." (Dialogue With Trypho the Jew, 150-165 AD, Ante-Nicene Fathers , vol. 1, page 204)
#10. 150AD JUSTIN:
There is no other thing for which you blame us, my friends, is there than this? That we do not live according to the Law, nor, are we circumcised in the flesh as your forefathers, nor do we observe the Sabbath as you do. (Dialogue with Trypho 10:1. In verse 3 the Jew Trypho acknowledges that Christians 'do not keep the Sabbath.')
#11. 155 AD Justin Martyr:
"[W]e too would observe the fleshly circumcision, and the Sabbaths, and in short all the feasts, if we did not know for what reason they were enjoined [on] you--namely, on account of your transgressions and the hardness of your heart. . . . [H]ow is it, Trypho, that we would not observe those rites which do not harm us--I speak of fleshly circumcision and Sabbaths and feasts? . . . God enjoined you [Jews] to keep the Sabbath, and impose on you other precepts for a sign, as I have already said, on account of your unrighteousness and that of your fathers" (Dialogue with Trypho the Jew 18, 21).
#12. 180AD ACTS OF PETER:
- Paul had often contended with the Jewish teachers and had confuted them, saying 'it is Christ on whom your fathers laid hands. He abolished their Sabbath and fasts and festivals and circumcision.' (1: I)-2
#13. 180AD GOSPEL OF PETER:
Early in the morning when (he Sabbath dawned, a multitude from Jerusalem and the surrounding country came to see the scaled sepulchre. In the night in which the Lord's day dawned, while the soldiers in pairs for each watch were keeping guard, a great voice came from heaven. [There follows an account of the resurrection. Early in the morning of the Lord's day Mary Magdalene, a disciple of the Lord .... came to the sepulchre. (9:34f.; 12:50f.)
#14. 190AD CLEMENT OF ALEXANDRIA:
(in commenting on each of the Ten Commandments and their Christian meaning:) The seventh day is proclaimed a day of rest, preparing by abstention from evil for the Primal day, our true rest. (Ibid. VII. xvi. 138.1)
#15. 190AD CLEMENT OF ALEXANDRIA:
He does the commandment according to the Gospel and keeps the Lord's day, whenever he puts away an evil mind . . . glorifying the Lord's resurrection in himself. (Ibid. Vii.xii.76.4)
#16. 190AD CLEMENT OF ALEXANDRIA:
Plato prophetically speaks of the Lord's day in the tenth book of the Republic, in these words: 'And when seven days have passed to each of them in the meadow, on the eighth they must go on." (Miscellanies V.xiv.106.2)
#17. 200AD BARDESANES:
Wherever we are, we are all called after the one name of Christ Christians. On one day, the first of the week, we assemble ourselves together (On Fate)
#18. 200AD TERTULLIAN:
"We solemnize the day after Saturday in contradistinction to those who call this day their Sabbath" (Tertullian's Apology, Ch 16)
#19. 200AD TERTULLIAN:
It follows, accordingly, that, in so far as the abolition of carnal circumcision and of the old law is demonstrated as having been consummated at its specific times, so also the observance of the Sabbath is demonstrated to have been temporary. (An Answer to the Jews 4:1, Ante-Nicene Fathers Vol. 3, page 155)
#20. 200AD TERTULLIAN:
Let him who contends that the Sabbath is still to be observed a balm of salvation, and circumcision on the eighth day because of threat of death, teach us that in earliest times righteous men kept Sabbath or practiced circumcision, and so were made friends of God. .. ...Therefore, since God originated Adam uncircumcised, and inobservant of the Sabbath, consequently his offspring also, Abel, offering Him sacrifices, uncircumcised and inobservant of the Sabbath, was by Him commended... Noah also, uncircumcised - yes, and inobservant of the Sabbath - God freed from the deluge. For Enoch, too, most righteous man, uncircumcised and inobservant of the Sabbath, He translated from this world... Melchizedek also, "the priest of most high God," uncircumcised and inobservant of the Sabbath, was chosen to the priesthood of God. (An Answer to the Jews 2:10; 4:1, Ante-Nicene Fathers Vol. 3, page 153)
#21. 200AD TERTULLIAN:
Others . . . suppose that the sun is the god of the Christians, because it is well-known that we regard Sunday as a day of joy. (To the Nations 1: 133)
#22. 200AD TERTULLIAN:
To us Sabbaths are foreign. (On Idolatry, 14:6)4
#23. 220AD ORIGEN:
"On Sunday none of the actions of the world should be done. If then, you abstain from all the works of this world and keep yourselves free for spiritual things, go to church, listen to the readings and divine homilies, meditate on heavenly things. (Homil. 23 in Numeros 4, PG 12:749)
#24. 220 AD Origen:
"Hence it is not possible that the [day of] rest after the Sabbath should have come into existence from the seventh [day] of our God. On the contrary, it is our Savior who, after the pattern of his own rest, caused us to be made in the likeness of his death, and hence also of his resurrection" (Commentary on John 2:28).
#25. 225 AD The Didascalia:
"The apostles further appointed: On the first day of the week let there be service, and the reading of the Holy Scriptures, and the oblation, because on the first day of the week our Lord rose from the place of the dead, and on the first day of the week he arose upon the world, and on the first day of the week he ascended up to heaven, and on the first day of the week he will appear at last with the angels of heaven" (Didascalia 2).
#26. 250AD CYPRIAN:
The eight day, that is, the first day after the Sabbath, and the Lord's Day." (Epistle 58, Sec 4)
#27. 250 AD IGNATIUS:
"If, therefore, those who were brought up in the ancient order of things have come to the possession of a new hope, no longer observing the Sabbath, but living in the observance of the Lord's Day, on which also our life has sprung up again by Him and by His death-whom some deny, by which mystery we have obtained faith, and therefore endure, that we may be found the disciples of Jesus Christ, our only Master-how shall we be able to live apart from Him, whose disciples the prophets themselves in the Spirit did wait for Him as their Teacher? And therefore He whom they rightly waited for, being come, raised them from the dead. If, then, those who were conversant with the ancient Scriptures came to newness of hope, expecting the coming of Christ, as the Lord teaches us when He says, "If ye had believed Moses, ye would have believed Me, for he wrote of Me; " and again, "Your father Abraham rejoiced to see My day, and he saw it, and was glad; for before Abraham was, I am; " how shall we be able to live without Him? The prophets were His servants, and foresaw Him by the Spirit, and waited for Him as their Teacher, and expected Him as their Lord and Saviour, saying, "He will come and save us." Let us therefore no longer keep the Sabbath after the Jewish manner, and rejoice in days of idleness; for "he that does not work, let him not eat." For say the [holy] oracles, "In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat thy bread." But let every one of you keep the Sabbath after a spiritual manner, rejoicing in meditation on the law, not in relaxation of the body, admiring the workmanship of God, and not eating things prepared the day before, nor using lukewarm drinks, and walking within a prescribed space, nor finding delight in dancing and plaudits which have no sense in them. And after the observance of the Sabbath, let every friend of Christ keep the Lord's Day as a festival, the resurrection-day, the queen and chief of all the days [of the week]. Looking forward to this, the prophet declared, "To the end, for the eighth day," on which our life both sprang up again, and the victory over death was obtained in Christ, whom the children of perdition, the enemies of the Saviour, deny, "whose god is their belly, who mind earthly things," who are "lovers of pleasure, and not lovers of God, having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof." These make merchandise of Christ, corrupting His word, and giving up Jesus to sale: they are corrupters of women, and covetous of other men's possessions, swallowing up wealth insatiably; from whom may ye be delivered by the mercy of God through our Lord Jesus Christ! (Epistle of Ignatius to the Magnesians, Chapter IX)
#28. 250AD IGNATIUS:
"On the day of the preparation, then, at the third hour, He received the sentence from Pilate, the Father permitting that to happen; at the sixth hour He was crucified; at the ninth hour He gave up the ghost; and before sunset He was buried. During the Sabbath He continued under the earth in the tomb in which Joseph of Arimathaea had laid Him. At the dawning of the Lord's day He arose from the dead, according to what was spoken by Himself, "As Jonah was three days and three nights in the whale's belly, so shall the Son of man also be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth. "The day of the preparation, then, comprises the passion; the Sabbath embraces the burial; the Lord's Day contains the resurrection." (The Epistle of Ignatius to the Trallians, chapter 9)
#29. 250AD IGNATIUS:
If any one fasts on the Lord's Day or on the Sabbath, except on the paschal Sabbath only, he is a murderer of Christ. (The Epistle of Ignatius to the Philippians, chapter 8)
#30. 250AD IGNATIUS:
"This [custom], of not bending the knee upon Sunday, is a symbol of the resurrection, through which we have been set free, by the grace of Christ, from sins, and from death, which has been put to death under Him. Now this custom took its rise from apostolic times, as the blessed Irenaeus, the martyr and bishop of Lyons, declares in his treatise On Easter, in which he makes mention of Pentecost also; upon which [feast] we do not bend the knee, because it is of equal significance with the Lord's day, for the reason already alleged concerning it." (Ignatius, Fragments)
#31. 300 AD Victorinus:
"The sixth day [Friday] is called parasceve, that is to say, the preparation of the kingdom. . . . On this day also, on account of the passion of the Lord Jesus Christ, we make either a station to God or a fast. On the seventh day he rested from all his works, and blessed it, and sanctified it. On the former day we are accustomed to fast rigorously, that on the Lord's day we may go forth to our bread with giving of thanks. And let the parasceve become a rigorous fast, lest we should appear to observe any Sabbath with the Jews . . . which Sabbath he [Christ] in his body abolished" (The Creation of the World).
#32. 300AD EUSEBIUS:
"They did not, therefore, regard circumcision, nor observe the Sabbath neither do we; ... because such things as these do not belong to Christians" (Ecc. Hist., Book 1, Ch. 4)
#33. 300AD EUSEBIUS:
[The Ebionites] were accustomed to observe the Sabbath and other Jewish customs but on the Lord's days to celebrate the same practices as we in remembrance of the resurrection of the Savior. (Church History Ill.xxvii.5)
#34. 300 AD Eusebius of Caesarea:
"They [the pre- Mosaic saints of the Old Testament] did not care about circumcision of the body, neither do we [Christians]. They did not care about observing Sabbaths, nor do we. They did not avoid certain kinds of food, neither did they regard the other distinctions which Moses first delivered to their posterity to be observed as symbols; nor do Christians of the present day do such things" (Church History 1:4:8).
#35. 300 AD Eusebius of Caesarea:
"The day of his [Christ's] light . . . was the day of his resurrection from the dead, which they say, as being the one and only truly holy day and the Lord's day, is better than any number of days as we ordinarily understand them, and better than the days set apart by the Mosaic Law for feasts, new moons, and Sabbaths, which the Apostle [Paul] teaches are the shadow of days and not days in reality" (Proof of the Gospel 4:16:186).
#36. 345 AD Athanasius:
"The Sabbath was the end of the first creation, the Lord's day was the beginning of the second, in which he renewed and restored the old in the same way as he prescribed that they should formerly observe the Sabbath as a memorial of the end of the first things, so we honor the Lord's day as being the memorial of the new creation" (On Sabbath and Circumcision 3).
#37. 350 AD APOSTOLIC CONSTITUTIONS:
Be not careless of yourselves, neither deprive your Saviour of His own members, neither divide His body nor disperse His members, neither prefer the occasions of this life to the word of God; but assemble yourselves together every day, morning and evening, singing psalms and praying in the Lord's house: in the morning saying the sixty-second Psalm, and in the evening the hundred and fortieth, but principally on the Sabbath-day. And on the day of our Lord's resurrection, which is the Lord's day, meet more diligently, sending praise to God that made the universe by Jesus, and sent Him to us, and condescended to let Him suffer, and raised Him from the dead. Otherwise what apology will he make to God who does not assemble on that day to hear the saving word concerning the resurrection, on which we pray thrice standing in memory of Him who arose in three days, in which is performed the reading of the prophets, the preaching of the Gospel, the oblation of the sacrifice, the gift of the holy food? (Constitutions of the Holy Apostles, book 2)
#38. 350 AD APOSTOLIC CONSTITUTIONS:
"How We Ought to Assemble Together, and to Celebrate the Festival Day of Our Saviour's Resurrection. On the day of the resurrection of the Lord, that is, the Lord's day, assemble yourselves together, without fail, giving thanks to God, and praising Him for those mercies God has bestowed upon you through Christ, and has delivered you from ignorance, error, and bondage, that your sacrifice may be unspotted, and acceptable to God,..." (Constitutions of the Holy Apostles, book 7)
#39. 350 AD Cyril of Jerusalem:
"Fall not away either into the sect of the Samaritans or into Judaism, for Jesus Christ has henceforth ransomed you. Stand aloof from all observance of Sabbaths and from calling any indifferent meats common or unclean" (Catechetical Lectures 4:37).
#40. 360 AD Council of Laodicea:
"Christians should not Judaize and should not be idle on the Sabbath, but should work on that day; they should, however, particularly reverence the Lord's day and, if possible, not work on it, because they were Christians" (canon 29).
#41. 387 AD John Chrysostom:
"You have put on Christ, you have become a member of the Lord and been enrolled in the heavenly city, and you still grovel in the Law [of Moses]? How is it possible for you to obtain the kingdom? Listen to Paul's words, that the observance of the Law overthrows the gospel, and learn, if you will, how this comes to pass, and tremble, and shun this pitfall. Why do you keep the Sabbath and fast with the Jews?" (Homilies on Galatians 2:17).
#42. 412 AD Augustine:
"Well, now, I should like to be told what there is in these Ten Commandments, except the observance of the Sabbath, which ought not to be kept by a Christian . . . Which of these commandments would anyone say that the Christian ought not to keep? It is possible to contend that it is not the Law which was written on those two tables that the apostle [Paul] describes as 'the letter that kills' [2 Cor. 3:6], but the law of circumcision and the other sacred rites which are now abolished" (The Spirit and the Letter 24).
#43. 597 AD Gregory I:
"But after that the grace of almighty God, our Lord Jesus Christ, has appeared, the commandments of the Law which were spoken figuratively cannot be kept according to the letter. For if anyone says that this about the Sabbath is to be kept, he must needs say that carnal sacrifices are to be offered. He must say too that the commandment about the circumcision of the body is still to be retained. But let him hear the apostle Paul saying in opposition to him: 'If you be circumcised, Christ will profit you nothing' (Gal. 5:2)" (Letters 13:1).
Thanks for reading. May God bless you richly as you continue to seek the TRUTH of the WHOLE word of God.
Your brother in our Lord Jesus Christ.