Why do Christians go to church on Sunday instead of the Sabbath?

The Sabbath is for Jews and won’t be reinstituted until the tribulation.

The Sabbath was given to the Jews as part of the law [Ex 20:9-11]. God told Moses to tell the children of Israel that the sabbath was “a sign between me and you throughout your generations,” [Ex 31:13, 16-17]. They knew nothing of keeping the sabbath, nor did anyone before them, until God made “known unto them thy holy sabbath,” [Neh 9:14].

Before Moses, no one ever kept the sabbath. God gave the sabbath to the Jews as a sign that they might know that he is the Lord their God [Eze 20:12, 20]. After all, Jews require a sign to believe God [1 Cor 1:22]. Therefore, the sabbath was never given to the Gentiles nor to the church.

Instead, the church can keep any day because we are not under the law [Rom 14:5-6; Gal 5:18]. When the church first got started, the saints were getting together everyday [Acts 2:46]. Shortly thereafter, we see that the congregations were getting together on the first day of the week [Sunday, not Saturday] probably because Jesus rose on the 1st day of the week [Lk 24:1; Matt 28:1].

In Acts 20:7, we find the disciples coming together to break bread on the first day of the week and Paul preached unto them. In 1 Cor 16:1-2, Paul instructed the church to take up a collection for the saints on the first day of the week, and to finish the offerings before he got there so that there would be no gatherings when he came. When Paul recited laws that still pertain to us as Christians, he left out the sabbath [Rom 13:8-10].

For this reason, the sabbath is not kept by the church. Paul said that members of the church were not to be judged according to things that pertained to the law, in particular sabbath days. Yet he also said that, among other things, sabbath days “are a shadow of things to come,” [Col 2:16-17]. That is after the rapture takes place and the church (the body of Christ) is gone, God will be dealing with Israel as a nation and the sabbath will be observed.

In fact we can see when the sabbath will need to be hallowed again. Look at the tribulation passage in Matt 24:15-21. Jews are told to run for the mountains when the antichrist’s image stands in the holy place. Yet they have to pray that their flight is not on the sabbath day because they are limited to how far they can travel on that day.

In Eze 40-48, following the tribulation, we find the millennial temple that the Jews will use during the 1000-year reign of Christ. In Eze 44:24, 45:17, and 46:1, 3, 4, and 12, God commands Israel to “hallow my sabbaths.”

You can clearly see then that Christians are not commanded to keep the sabbath. And you can see reasons why Sunday is the day when Christians meet rather than Saturday. In essence, if we were looking to one day as a day of rest, we should remember that our rest is in Jesus Christ [Matt 11:28-30] and not in a day [Mk 2:27-28].

Hope this helps,

Pastor Bevans Welder