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Did Catholics Change Our Day of Worship from Saturday to Sunday?

As Christian believers, the act of worship holds a central place in our faith. One aspect that may intrigue believers and non-believers alike is why Christian's worship on Sunday instead of the traditional Sabbath day of Saturday. The transition from Saturday to Sunday as the primary day of worship may seem puzzling, but a closer examination reveals a profound theological and historical significance. This blog will explore the reasons behind the Christian tradition of worshiping on Sunday.

1. Resurrection of Jesus Christ:

The most fundamental reason for Sunday Christian worship stems from Jesus Christ's resurrection. According to biblical accounts, Jesus rose from the dead on the first day of the week, which we now refer to as Sunday. This pivotal event in human history signifies the triumph of life over death, the fulfillment of God's plan of salvation, and the inauguration of the new creation. Consequently, early Christians began to commemorate this glorious resurrection by gathering together for worship on the day of the Lord's victory.

2. The Lord's Day:

Sunday became known as the "Lord's Day" because it was the day of Christ's resurrection. The early Church Fathers, such as Ignatius of Antioch and Justin Martyr, called Sunday the "eighth day" or the "first day" of the new creation. By designating Sunday as the day of corporate worship, Christians sought to honor and remember the redemptive work of Christ, who conquered sin and death and secured salvation for humanity. This act of worship became a weekly reminder of the hope and joy found in the resurrection of Jesus.

3. Jewish Sabbath and Christian Fulfillment:

The shift from Saturday to Sunday also signifies the transition from the Old Testament Sabbath to the New Testament era. In the Old Testament, Saturday was set apart as the day of rest and worship for the Jewish people as commanded in the Ten Commandments (Exodus 20:8-11). However, with the advent of Christ, the fulfillment of the Law, and the establishment of the new covenant, Christians found their rest and salvation in Jesus rather than the observance of specific days (Matthew 11:28-30, Colossians 2:16-17). Thus, the early Church embraced the first day of the week to commemorate the new covenant and the resurrection of Christ.

4. Apostolic Tradition and Historical Witness:

From the earliest days of Christianity, Sunday worship emerged as a prevailing practice among believers. The New Testament writings, such as Acts 20:7 and 1 Corinthians 16:2, indicate that the early Christians gathered for worship on the first day of the week. The writings of the early Church Fathers further confirm this tradition. For instance, Justin Martyr, in his First Apology, written around the second century, describes the weekly worship of Christians on Sunday, where they would read Scripture, preach, celebrate the Eucharist, and engage in prayer. This historical witness attests to the continuity and significance of Sunday worship in the early Church. While the shift from Saturday to Sunday as the primary day of Christian worship may initially appear arbitrary or unplanned, it is rooted in profound theological and historical reasons. The commemoration of Christ's resurrection, the establishment of the new covenant, and the apostolic tradition all contribute to the prominence of Sunday as the Lord's Day. As Christians, gathering on Sunday allows us to celebrate the victory of our Savior over sin and death and to experience the joy of the new creation inaugurated by His resurrection. Let us embrace this weekly opportunity to worship, grow in faith, and find our rest in the risen Lord Jesus Christ.


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