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Tuesday, June 21, 2011

The Ten Commandments: Should Christians keep the Sabbath?

"Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy."--Exodus 20:8.  The fourth commandment and whether or not it should be observed has been the source of controversy in many Christian circles, using the term Christian loosely of course.  The fourth commandment is to remember the Sabbath day and to keep it holy.  What we need to do is ask ourselves is should Christians keep the Sabbath today?

Should Christians keep the Sabbath today?  Before I answer this question, today's blog is going to be more informative than practical due to the nature of the question.

So should Christians keep the Sabbath? Of course first and foremost we have to look to the Scriptures for the answer.  What we have to realize is that the fourth commandment was exclusively part of the old covenant which is now obsolete (Hebrews 8:13).

Should Christians keep the Sabbath? We have to remember Jesus' statement as well in Mark 2:27 when He states that "The Sabbath was made for man not man for the Sabbath."  Meaning while it did have to observed under the old law for obedience's sake, it was made more for man's benefit according to the Bible Knowledge Commentary (114-115).  Get the full context of Jesus' statement in Mark 2:23-28.

Should Christians keep the Sabbath?  As we move forward through the gospel accounts (Matthew, Mark, Luke and John) and through the writings of the apostles, nowhere will you find a command that we are to keep the Sabbath today. An allusion is made to the Sabbath in Hebrews 4:9 but it is used to illustrate the fact that for God's people, there remains a promise of entering rest when we enter into heaven which begs the question shouldn't we be working in God's harvest in the meantime while we are still here on earth? Food for thought.

Should Christians keep the Sabbath?  Finally, and probably most importantly what we are commanded to do based on Christ's direct command found in Matthew 26:26-29 and also by apostolic example and command such as in Acts 2:39-42, Acts 20:7 and 1 Corinthians 11:23-32, we ARE to observe the Lord's Supper on the first day of EVERY week when we come together for worship.

So should Christians keep the Sabbath?  Based on the Scriptures which is our one and only authority, the answer is emphatically NO!

What I have given here is simply a birds eye view of the situation based on Scripture alone, please feel free to comment or email me at if you have any further questions or comments.


Walvoord, John F., and Roy B. Zuck. The Bible Knowledge Commentary: an Exposition of the Scriptures. Wheaton, IL: Victor, 1983. Print.

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