Celebrating the Sabbath
People have different ideas about what you can and can’t do on Sundays, how you should and shouldn’t act. This ranges from Sunday being the same as every other day to it being a solemn set-apart time when you go to church, rest, and do nothing else.
Though I have never pursued either of these options, my treatment of this special day has varied over the years, covering much of the area in between.
Old Testament Sabbath: The Seventh Day of the Week
The Bible tells us what to do and not do on the Sabbath. The Sabbath is the end of the week, the seventh day—when God rested after he finished his creation.
God tells his people two key things about observing the Sabbath. First, keep it holy. Second, do no work. That’s it.
Note that he doesn’t mention anything about going to a church gathering to worship him each Sabbath.
New Testament Sunday: The First Day of the Week
The New Testament describes what the early church does on Sunday, which is the first day of the week. Yet the Bible is short on instructing us what we can and should do today for our Sunday observances.
Jesus gives us the best guideline when he says, “The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath.” When we factor in biblical concepts of rest and worship, we have a framework from which to form our Sunday routines.
There is no one right answer. We are each left to contemplate this on our own and determine a Sunday practice that is true to what God calls us to do.
Read more about this in Peter’s new book, Jesus’s Broken Church, available in e-book, audiobook, paperback, and hardcover.
Peter DeHaan writes about biblical Christianity to confront status quo religion and live a life that matters. He seeks a fresh approach to following Jesus through the lens of Scripture, without the baggage of made-up traditions and meaningless practices.