Doesn’t the Catholic Church observe the Sabbath on Saturday?

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While the Catholic Church may conduct a mass on Saturday, their official day of worship is Sunday. The Roman Catholic Church claims that it had, by its divine authority, transferred the sacredness of the seventh day to the first day.

Here are few quotes from their literature that show that:

Q. Have you any other proofs that they(Protestants) are not guided by the Scripture?

A. Yes; so many, that we cannot admit more than a mere specimen into this small work. They reject much that is clearly contained in Scripture, and profess more that is nowhere discoverable in that Divine Book.

Q. Give some examples of both?

A. They should, if the Scripture were their only rule, wash the feet of one another, according to the command of Christ, in the 13th chap. of St. John; —they should keep, not the Sunday, but the Saturday, according to the commandment, “Remember thou keep holy the SABBATH-day;” for this commandment has not, in Scripture, been changed or abrogated;… Rev. Stephen Keenan, A Doctrinal Catechism; New York in 1857, page 101 Imprimatuer

Q. Have you any other way of proving that the Church has power to institute festivals of precept?

A. Had she not such power, she could not have done that in which all modern religionists agree with her; —she could not have substituted the observance of Sunday the first day of the week, for the observance of Saturday the seventh day, a change for which there is no Scriptural authority. Rev. Stephen Keenan, A Doctrinal Catechism; New York in 1857, page 174

Q. In what manner can we show a Protestant, that he speaks unreasonably against fasts and abstinences?

A. Ask him why he keeps Sunday, and not Saturday, as his day of rest, since he is unwilling either to fast or to abstain. If he reply, that the Scripture orders him to keep the Sunday, but says nothing as to fasting and abstinence, tell him the Scripture speaks of Saturday or the Sabbath, but gives no command anywhere regarding Sunday or the first day of the week. If, then he neglects Saturday as a day of rest and holiness, and substitutes Sunday in its place, and this merely because such was the usage of the ancient Church, should he not, if he wishes to act consistently, observe fasting and abstinence, because the ancient Church so ordained? Rev. Stephen Keenan, A Doctrinal Catechism; New York in 1857, page 181

“It is well to remind the Presbyterians, Baptists, Methodists, and all other Christians, that the Bible does not support them anywhere in their observance of Sunday. Sunday is an institution of the Roman Catholic Church, and those who observe the day observe a commandment of the Catholic Church.” Priest Brady, in an address, reported in the Elizabeth, NJ ‘News’ on March 18, 1903.

The Lord sanctified the seventh day

The Bible is clear that believers should observe the seventh day Sabbath. For God blessed it at creation.  “And on the seventh day God ended His work which He had done, and He rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had done.  Then God blessed the seventh day and sanctified it, because in it He rested from all His work which God had created and made” (Genesis 2:2,3).

In fact, the Lord wrote the Sabbath commandment as part of the Ten Commandments twice on by His very own finger in stone (Deuteronomy 9:10). He wrote, “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work,  but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord your God For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and hallowed it” (Exodus 20:8-11).

The characteristics of God’s saints

In the book of Revelation, John describes God’s true believers. “Here is the patience of the saints; here are those who keep the commandments of God and the faith of Jesus (Revelation 14:12).

At the end, the special commandment controverted will be the sabbath. There is general agreement among believers that the other nine are of universal requirement. But early in the Christian church people started to not observe the seventh-day Sabbath and to substitute it with the observance of the first day of the week. This was predicted by the prophet Daniel (ch. 7:25).

Today, Sunday-observing Christians give different reasons as to why they observe the first day of the week instead of the seventh. Some claim that the Ten Commandments were abolished along with all Old Testament laws. But Christ stated that He didn’t come to abolish the law (Matthew 5:17-18).

Others claim that the time component in the fourth commandment is ceremonial. But they claim that the keeping of one day every seven is a moral duty. However, the Bible clearly states that the end time church will keep the commandments of God and the testimony of Jesus. “And the dragon was enraged with the woman, and he went to make war with the rest of her offspring, who keep the commandments of God and have the testimony of Jesus Christ” (Revelation 12:17).

For more on the Sabbath, please check (Lessons 91-102): https://bibleask.org/bible-answers/

In His service,
BibleAsk Team

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