What is the Lord’s day?

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By BibleAsk Team


The Lord’s Day

The phrase the “Lord’s day” appears only once in Revelation 1:9, 10. In this passage, the Lord’s day refers to the time when John saw the vision. Some Christians have pointed to Sunday as the Lord’s day but the meaning of “Lord’s day” should be determined by reference to Scripture rather than by popular traditions. There are only eight verses in the Bible that mention Sunday but none of these verses show that Sunday is a sacred day or the Lord’s day. And there is no verse in the Scriptures that identifies Sunday with connection to the Lord.

The Bible recognizes that the seventh day, the Sabbath, is the Lord’s special day. From the very beginning of time, God blessed and sanctified the seventh day: “God blessed the seventh day and sanctified it, because in it He rested from all His work which God had created and made” (Genesis 2:3).

The Lord declared the seventh day to be the memorial of His act of creation.  “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. In it you shall do no work: you, nor your son, nor your daughter, nor your male servant, nor your female servant, nor your cattle, nor your stranger who is within your gates.  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 20:11).

The Sabbath commandment divides the week into two parts: (1) “six days shalt thou … do all thy work,” (2) “the seventh day … thou shalt not do any work.” And why this prohibition of work on “the seventh day”? Because it is a “sabbath of the Lord.” In fact, God called the Sabbath specifically “my holy day.” He said, “If you turn away your foot from the Sabbath, from doing your pleasure on My holy day… Then you shall delight yourself in the Lord; And I will cause you to ride on the high hills of the earth and feed you with the heritage of Jacob your father…” (Isaiah 58:13).

Jesus and the Lord’s Day

Jesus declared Himself to be, “Lord also of the sabbath” (Mark 2:28). After pointing to the purpose of the Sabbath (verse 27) Christ directed the attention to its Author, and thus to His own right to determine how that purpose shall best be realized. Man has no right to tamper with the day of God’s choosing.

Some teach that the Savior annulled the Sabbath but Jesus declared, “Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil. For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled” (Matthew 5:17,18).

The great Lawgiver Himself confirmed the Ten Commandments as binding upon the New Testament believers, and declared that anyone who should presume to abolish them either by precept or by example would “in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven” (Matthew 5:20). By fulfilling the law Christ “filled” it “with meaning and gave people an example of perfect obedience to the will of God, in order that the same law “might be fulfilled in us” (Romans 8:3, 4).

Thus, when the phrase “Lord’s day” is interpreted in accordance with evidence prior to and contemporary with John’s time, it appears that there is only one day to which it can refer, and that is the seventh day Sabbath.

For more on the Sabbath, check (Lessons 91-102) on Bible Lessons.

In His service,
BibleAsk Team

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