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Early Church Fathers - Worship on Sabbath or Sunday
Stay Catholic ^

Posted on 03/24/2007 3:10:20 PM PDT by NYer

Contrary to the teaching of Seventh Day Adventists the early Church gathered for worship on the Lord’s Day (Sunday), not Saturday, in honor of the day our Lord rose from the dead.

The Didache

But every Lord's day . . . gather yourselves together and break bread, and give thanksgiving after having confessed your transgressions, that your sacrifice may be pure. 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 (Didache 14 [A.D. 70]).

Ignatius of Antioch

[T]hose who were brought up in the ancient order of things [i.e., Jews] 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 (Letter to the Magnesians 8 [A.D. 110]).

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 [sacrifice of the Mass], because on the first day of the week [Sunday] 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 [A.D. 225]).

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. 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 [A.D. 300]).

Eusebius

They [the early 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 [A.D. 325]).

[T]he 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 [A.D. 319]).

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 [A.D. 345]).

Cyril of Jerusalem

Fall not away either into the sect of the Samaritans or into Judaism, for Jesus Christ has ransomed you. Stand aloof from all observance of Sabbaths and from calling indifferent meats common or unclean (Catechetical Lectures 4:37 [A.D. 350]).

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 [A.D. 360]).

John Chrysostom

When he said, "You shall not kill" . . . he did not add "because murder is a wicked thing." The reason was that conscience had taught this beforehand, and he speaks thus, as to those who know and understand the point. Wherefore when he speaks to us of another commandment, not known to us by the dictate of conscience, he not only prohibits, but adds the reason. When, for instance, he gave commandment concerning the Sabbath — "On the seventh day you shall do no work"— he subjoined also the reason for this cessation. What was this? "Because on the seventh day God rested from all his works which he had begun to make" [Ex. 20:10]. And again: "Because you were a servant in the land of Egypt" [Deut. 21:18]. For what purpose then, I ask, did he add a reason respecting the Sabbath, but did no such thing in regard to murder? Because this commandment was not one of the leading ones. It was not one of those which were accurately defined of our conscience, but a kind of partial and temporary one, and for this reason it was abolished afterward. But those which are necessary and uphold our life are the following: '"You shall not kill... You shall not commit adultery... You shall not steal." On this account he adds no reason in this case, nor enters into any instruction on the matter, but is content with the bare prohibition (Homilies on the Statues 12:9 [A.D. 387]).

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 [A.D. 395]).

Apostolic Constitutions

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 . . . 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 (Apostolic Constitutions 2:7:60 [A.D. 400]).


TOPICS: Apologetics; Catholic; Orthodox Christian; Worship
KEYWORDS: liturgy; mass; sunday; worship
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To: NYer

Tts 3:9 ¶ But avoid foolish questions, and genealogies, and contentions, and strivings about the law; for they are unprofitable and vain.

It doesn't matter one whit what day of the week one worships or gathes to worship God.

Debates on the topic are contentious, vain, and unprofitable.


21 posted on 03/24/2007 4:39:34 PM PDT by Eagle Eye (There oughta be a law against excess legislation.)
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To: Jaded

SDA are about the closest to being Jewish without being Jewish.

Somewhere along the line they failed to believe that salvation is by grace and that folowing one part of the law obligates one to follow all the law.


22 posted on 03/24/2007 4:41:21 PM PDT by Eagle Eye (There oughta be a law against excess legislation.)
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To: Salvation

I attend the Anticipatory Mass (Saturday night) at my Parish up in Alaska (cringes, preparing to receive incoming fire). I'll admit, a lot of it is for selfish reasons (in that it makes Sunday morning PT easier and we are four hours behind EST (admitted sports addict)), but it is also the Mass that has confession and quite prayer time built in prior to(I need that often). I also go alone (fiancee is far away in Chicago) so I just find it easier.

What I've found is it is the younger people Mass, that being said, there are only a handful of younger people. Since Lent started it has been a sparsely attended Mass.


23 posted on 03/24/2007 4:49:27 PM PDT by StAthanasiustheGreat (Vocatus Atque Non Vocatus Deus Aderit)
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To: NYer; kerryusama04

Since the Seventh Day Adventists are discussed here, either the caucus needs to be expanded to include SDA - or the caucus label removed. Your choice.


24 posted on 03/24/2007 5:12:45 PM PDT by Religion Moderator
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To: Religion Moderator; NYer; kerryusama04

It wasn't me this time...

Woo Hoo!

25 posted on 03/24/2007 5:24:39 PM PDT by Enosh ()
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To: Religion Moderator

I say open it. Then again, I hate the whole caucus thread thing. I think it speaks volumes that it has come to that on this forum.


26 posted on 03/24/2007 5:30:34 PM PDT by StAthanasiustheGreat (Vocatus Atque Non Vocatus Deus Aderit)
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To: StAthanasiustheGreat
I hate the whole caucus thread thing

Well, look at some of the "Catholic Caucus: Daily Mass Readings" stuff.

Much of it is beautiful

27 posted on 03/24/2007 5:35:52 PM PDT by Enosh (?)
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To: Enosh

Pesky tagline...


28 posted on 03/24/2007 5:37:13 PM PDT by Enosh ()
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To: Enosh

I agree, there are some beautiful threads there. I am Catholic, I find many of them beautiful and spiritually worthwhile. At the same time, it is sad that so many of the threads turn into shooting wars, and I am guilty as much as others. I just don't like the fact we have to label them. Common sense you think would dictate that certain threads are for debate and others are not.


29 posted on 03/24/2007 5:40:10 PM PDT by StAthanasiustheGreat (Vocatus Atque Non Vocatus Deus Aderit)
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To: Eagle Eye

"SDA are about the closest to being Jewish without being Jewish."


But the SDA don't keep Passover and the other Jewish festivals plus they are Trinitarian.


I think the closest would be the Church of God, the Armstrong groups.


30 posted on 03/24/2007 6:47:19 PM PDT by Macoraba
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To: Macoraba

So I guess that would make them 'about' the closest but not the closest, right?

But now we've gotten into vain babblings that edify no one, haven't we?


31 posted on 03/24/2007 6:49:26 PM PDT by Eagle Eye (There oughta be a law against excess legislation.)
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To: Macoraba; Eagle Eye; XeniaSt; Buggman; DouglasKC; Diego1618; Ping-Pong
I think the closest would be the Church of God, the Armstrong groups.

The SDA only keeps the Sabbath and the dietary laws. They still have crosses, false Christ's hanging on the walls, keep Easter and Christmas, and don't keep the Levitical Holy Days.

The spin-offs from WCG are closer, and some of us tend to think of ourselves as being adopted into the house of Abraham, and thus "Jews" by the modern meaning of the word.

The closest Christian congregation to being Hebrew would the the Messianic Congregations, IMO

32 posted on 03/24/2007 7:14:18 PM PDT by kerryusama04 (Isa 8:20, Eze 22:26)
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To: NYer
Isaiah 1:13 - God begins to reveal His displeasure with the Sabbath.

This is so out of context that I don't know if it is possible to put it back in. Reading the first chapter of Isaiah shows even the most basicly educated of men that God is not upset at the keeping of the Sabbath, He is upset because overtly sinful men are keeping the Sabbath. Jesus Himself said that God desires obedience, not sacrifice. Duh.

Beyone this, if Isaiah is hinting at the removal of the Sabbath in the first chapter, then why on God's earth would he then tell us that the Sabbat is going to be kept in the LAST chapter???

Isaiah 66 23 And it will be, from one new moon to another, and from one sabbath to another, all flesh will come to worship before Me, says the LORD.

33 posted on 03/24/2007 7:21:26 PM PDT by kerryusama04 (Isa 8:20, Eze 22:26)
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To: NYer
Acts 20:7 - this text shows the apostolic tradition of gathering together to celebrate the Eucharist on Sunday, the "first day of the week." Luke documents the principle worship was on Sunday because this was one of the departures from the Jewish form of worship.

Again, context removed.

Acts 20 6 And after the days of Unleavened Bread , we sailed away from Philippi and came to them at Troas in five days, where we stayed seven days.

Now, wouldn't it be strange for someone to be keeping time with regard to the Levitical Feasts, yet NOT keeping the weeky Sabbath?

34 posted on 03/24/2007 7:28:53 PM PDT by kerryusama04 (Isa 8:20, Eze 22:26)
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To: NYer
Matt. 28:1; Mark 16:2,9; John 20:1,19- the Gospel writers purposely reveal Jesus' resurrection and appearances were on Sunday. This is because Sunday had now become the most important day in the life of the Church.

Hmmm, lets look at these with the YLT version:

Matthew 28 1 And on the eve of the sabbaths, at the dawn, toward the first of the sabbaths, came Mary the Magdalene, and the other Mary, to see the sepulchre,

Mark 16 1 And the sabbath having past, Mary the Magdalene, and Mary of James, and Salome, bought spices, that having come, they may anoint him, 2 and early in the morning of the first of the sabbaths, they come unto the sepulchre, at the rising of the sun,

Mark 16 9 And he, having risen in the morning of the first of the sabbaths, did appear first to Mary the Magdalene, out of whom he had cast seven demons;

John 20 1 And on the first of the sabbaths, Mary the Magdalene doth come early (there being yet darkness) to the tomb, and she seeth the stone having been taken away out of the tomb,

John 20 19 It being, therefore, evening, on that day, the first of the sabbaths, and the doors having been shut where the disciples were assembled, through fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood in the midst, and saith to them, `Peace to you;'

35 posted on 03/24/2007 7:33:12 PM PDT by kerryusama04 (Isa 8:20, Eze 22:26)
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To: NYer

Thanks for posting these instructive readings.


36 posted on 03/24/2007 7:34:32 PM PDT by Ciexyz (Is the American voter smarter than a fifth grader?)
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To: NYer
1 Cor. 16:2 - Paul instructs the Corinthians to make contributions to the churches "on the first day of the week," which is Sunday. This is because the primary day of Christian worship is Sunday.

I Corinthians 16 2 On the first day of the week let each of you put by himself, storing up what ever he is prospered, so that there may be no collections when I come.

Why, again, does this say Paul instructed the believers at Corinth to take up the collection?

37 posted on 03/24/2007 7:36:32 PM PDT by kerryusama04 (Isa 8:20, Eze 22:26)
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To: NYer
Col. 2:16-17 - Paul teaches that the Sabbath was only a shadow of what was fulfilled in Christ, and says "let no one pass judgment any more over a Sabbath."

16 Therefore let no one judge you in food or in drink, or in respect of a holy day, or of the new moon, or of the sabbaths. 17 For these are a shadow of things to come, but the body is of Christ.

Sure enough, it sure does tell them not to let anyone judge them. could that be because their pagan neighbors were judging them, much like you guys are judging SDA's and they needed some encouragement? Notice, it does not say, "don't keep the Sabbath", nor does it say "you aren't going to be judged if you don't keep the Sabbath". In fact, how could pagan converts in Colossea even know about a Sabbath if Paul hadn't told them?

38 posted on 03/24/2007 7:40:36 PM PDT by kerryusama04 (Isa 8:20, Eze 22:26)
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To: NYer
2 Thess. 2:15 - we are to hold fast to apostolic tradition, whether it is oral or written. The 2,000 year-old tradition of the Church is that the apostles changed the Sabbath day of worship from Saturday to Sunday.

Negatory, compadre'. The position of the Church at Rome is that it changed the Sabbath outside of scripture. By even hinting that Sunday is, in fact, scriptural, you are denying the very authority that Rome claims.

Nowhere in the Bible do we find that Christ or the Apostles ordered that the Sabbath be changed from Saturday to Sunday. We have the commandment of God given to Moses to keep holy the Sabbath Day, that is the 7th day of the week, Saturday. Today most Christians keep Sunday because it has been revealed to us by the [Catholic] Church outside the Bible." "To Tell You the Truth," The Catholic Virginian, 22 (October 3, 1947), 9.

Furthermore, II Thess 2:15 tells the believers to hold fast to that which they were taught, which also includes this little nugget:

II Timothy 3 16 All Scripture is God-breathed, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness,

Which leads one to Isaiah 8:20 and Deuteronomy 13:1-5, which makes clear that those who disregard God's Law are to be avoided and scorned.

39 posted on 03/24/2007 7:46:46 PM PDT by kerryusama04 (Isa 8:20, Eze 22:26)
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To: NYer
Heb. 4:8-9 - regarding the day of rest, if Joshua had given rest, God would not later speak of "another day," which is Sunday, the new Sabbath. Sunday is the first day of the week and the first day of the new creation brought about by our Lord's resurrection, which was on Sunday.

YLT again

Hebrews 4 9 there doth remain, then, a sabbatic rest to the people of God,

40 posted on 03/24/2007 7:49:32 PM PDT by kerryusama04 (Isa 8:20, Eze 22:26)
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