Everyone knows that the first day of the week is Sunday and that the seventh day is actually Saturday. Yet, most worship on Sunday. Why?
Exodus 20:8-11 - Remember the day, Shabbat, to set it apart for God. (9) You have six days to labor and do all your work, (10) but the seventh day is a Shabbat for ADONAI your God. On it, you are not to do any kind of work -not you, your son or your daughter, not your male or female slave, not your livestock, and not the foreigner staying with you inside the gates to your property. (11) For in six days, ADONAI made heaven and earth, the sea and everything in them; but on the seventh day he rested. This is why ADONAI blessed the day, Shabbat, and separated it for himself.
People who do not observe Shabbat think of it as a day filled with stifling restrictions. But to those who observe Shabbat, it is a precious gift from G-d, a day of great joy eagerly awaited throughout the week, a time when we can set aside all of our weekday concerns and devote ourselves to higher pursuits.
Shabbat, like all Jewish days, begins at sunset. Because in the story of creation in Genesis Ch. 1, you will notice that it says, "And there was evening, and there was morning, one day." From this, we infer that a day begins with evening, that is, sunset.
Genesis 2:3 - God blessed the seventh day and separated it as holy; because on that day God rested from all his work which he had created, so that it itself could produce.
By resting on the seventh day, we acknowledge that we do not own our world. Our world is G-d's domain. This is a day for looking at what G-d has created and lent to us for our enjoyment. By setting aside one day for Shabbat, we also proclaim our freedom from daily obligations, commitments, worries and concerns. We declare that one day of the week is for our own rejuvenation.
Why do many Christians worship on Sunday? In 321 CE, while he was a Pagan sun-worshiper, the Emperor Constantine declared that Sunday was to be a day of rest throughout the Roman Empire:
"On the venerable day of the Sun let the magistrates and people residing in cities rest, and let all workshops be closed. In the country however persons engaged in agriculture may freely and lawfully continue their pursuits because it often happens that another day is not suitable for gain-sowing or vine planting; lest by neglecting the proper moment for such operations the bounty of heaven should be lost."
The Church Council of Laodicea circa 364 CE ordered that religious observances were to be conducted on Sunday, not Saturday. Sunday became the new Sabbath. They ruled: "Christians shall not Judaize and be idle on Saturday, but shall work on that day." There are many indicators in the historical record that some Christians ignored the Church's ruling. Sabbath observance was noted in Wales as late as 1115 CE. Francis Xavier was concerned about Sabbath worship in Goa, India in 1560 CE; he called for the Inquisition to set up an office there to stamp out what he called "Jewish wickedness." A Catholic Provincial Council suppressed the practice in Norway in 1435 CE.
What would happen if you had an important job interview on Monday, but showed up on Tuesday? The answer is that you simply "wouldn't be considered" for the position and you can only hope they will show mercy and reschedule you.
What would happen if your non-refundable airline ticket was for Thursday at 10 a.m., but you showed up ready to fly on Friday at 10 a.m.? The answer is, you just lost the price of your ticket.
What would happen if your job required you to work Monday through Friday, but you showed up on Tuesday to work through Saturday? The answer is, you better hope your resume is up to date because you're fired.
Each of us knows the value we put on a day and how important it is to keep the appointments made on that day. Ask yourself why G-d, who created the cycle of days, and made a divine appointment with mankind each Sabbath, would put less importance on keeping His schedule then you and I would?
Yeshua (Jesus) reinforced the Fourth Commandment when he said, "The Sabbath was made for man" (Mark 2:27). His point was that the Sabbath was made as a blessing for the benefit of mankind- not as an oppressive legal yoke. It was made for man - not just the Jews. Yeshua also proclaimed Himself L-rd of the Sabbath (Mark 2:28) and observed it regularly (Mark 1:2 1; Luke 4:16-22). Though He frequently denounced the Pharisees for their man made-rules, Yeshua always upheld the Sabbath and showed by His positive example how it should be observed as a day of rest, worship, freedom, and joy (Mark 3:4; Luke 13:15-16; Matthew 12:10-12).
Scripture to read about Shabbat - Exodus 31:12-17 and Exodus 35:2-3, Leviticus 19:3 Leviticus 19:30 and Leviticus 23:3 and Numbers 28:9-10. It is referred to directly by the prophets Isaiah 56:4,6, Ezekiel 20:13 Ezekiel 22:8 Ezekiel 23:38 and Nehemiah 9:14.Do you have a day of Rest? If so, on which day of the week? If not, why not?