EWTN Catholic Q&A
Sunday vs. Saturday Sabbath
Question from Diane on 10-03-2012:

I see my friends on Facebook are having a debate over why Christians changed the Sabbath day to Sunday. How should I answer them? I hate to let it go. I can see they are thinking about changing to Seventh-Day Adventist or something.

Answer by Catholic Answers on 10-03-2012:

Diane--

There are two assumptions at work here:

-- The Church "changed" the Sabbath from Saturday to Sunday
-- Christians are obliged to observe the Sabbath

Both assumptions are incorrect. The Church did not "change" the day of the Sabbath; it remains on the seventh day, Saturday. Because the Sabbath is a Jewish holiday, Christians are not required to observe the Sabbath. Instead, the Church shifted the moral obligation of the Third Commandment (the Sabbath commandment) to join in communal worship and appropriate rest from the Sabbath to the Lord's Day on Sunday.

Protestant Christians have all sorts of trouble with this. Those who keep Sunday as the Lord's Day have a difficult time defending it, especially when they call Sunday "the Sabbath," because the shift in observance of the moral obligation depends on the Catholic Church's authority that was given to the Church by Christ. Those Protestant Christians, such as Seventh-Day Adventists, who follow that logic to its natural conclusion have abandoned Sunday observance and gone back to observing the Sabbath, which they falsely conclude is required of Christians.

Recommended reading:

Sabbath or Sunday?
From Sabbath to Sunday by James P. Guzek

Michelle Arnold
Catholic Answers


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