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Is Shabbat for Today? Part 2
From: Rabbi Moshe Koniuchowsky
IS THE SHABBAT FOR TODAY
Seventh day - 4 First day - 0
A little later in the chapter, after Paul shares Yahshua with them we see that the Gentiles were quite interested.
Acts 13:42 (NKJV) So when the Jews went out of the synagogue, the Gentiles begged that these words might be preached to them the next Shabbat.
Now here is a perfect situation for Paul to tell these Gentiles "Hey just come back tomorrow, we keep the Shabbat on the first day now!" But we don't see this written anywhere in scripture.
Acts 13:43 Now when the congregation had broken up, many of the Jews and devout proselytes followed Paul and Barnabas, who, speaking to them, persuaded them to continue in the grace of Yahweh Acts 13:44 On the next Shabbat almost the whole city came together to hear the word of Yahweh.
So here is the fifth time that the disciples attended a Shabbat service on the day that Yahweh sanctified at creation. Again, the seventh day is called "the Shabbat" in this passage.
Seventh day - 5 First day - 0
Here is another example in Acts 16...
Acts 16:11 (NKJV) Therefore, sailing from Troas, we ran a straight
course to Samothrace, and the next [day] came to Neapolis, Acts 16:12
and from there to Philippi, which is the foremost city of that part of
It was the custom of the Jews of that day for the rabbi to shut down
the synagogue if there were not at least 10 men that would show up for
the Shabbat meeting. This could very well be why there were women
meeting by the riverside for prayer. Nevertheless, we see that the
disciples sought a place to meet for the Shabbat and they did. Again,
Seventh day - 6 First day - 0
Acts 18:1 (NKJV) After these things Paul departed from
So we see that he worked on the other days as a tentmaker...but on
the Shabbat He was not. And here again we see that both Jews and Greeks
are in the synagogue and on the Shabbat. Paul also is among them
attending the Shabbat services. The interesting thing about this verse
is that instead of the scripture saying that they attended only one or
Let's do that..
Seventh day - 7 First day - 0
Now if Paul was in
Acts 18:5 (NKJV) When Silas and Timothy had come from
A year and six months! Finally the ruler of the synagogue was converted to Yahshua and Paul was there a year and six months! So the scripture says that Paul was there every Shabbat and that he was there for a year and six months. If we counted this by our present calendar that would give us 52 Shabbats in a year plus 26 Shabbats in the following six months which gives us a total of 78 Shabbats! Now lets add this to our present total:
Seventh Day - 84 First day - 0
So we can see that the disciples observed the Shabbat and attended a Shabbat service 84 times in the book of acts alone! Again, the seventh day is called "the Shabbat" in this passage.
Now how many times do we see them meeting together on the first day? Some would cite one example in Acts 20. Let's examine the text...
Acts 20:6 (NKJV) But we sailed away from Philippi after the Days of Unleavened Bread, and in five days joined them at Troas, where we stayed seven days. Acts 20:7 Now on the first [day] of the week, when the disciples came together to break bread, Paul, ready to depart the next day, spoke to them and continued his message until midnight.
Here we see an example of the disciples gathering together on the first day of the week. There is no mention of a Shabbat being observed in this verse. Nowhere is this day called "The Shabbat". In fact, we know that Paul was ready to depart the next day. According to verse 7, Paul spoke to them a message because for this very reason.
Now some would say that coming together to 'break bread' constitutes a meeting that includes the observance of partaking in Yahshua's body. But this is not true...consider this verse:
Acts 2:44 (NKJV) Now all who believed were together, and had all
things in common, 45 and sold their possessions and goods, and divided
them among all, as anyone had need. 46 So continuing daily with one
accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, they ate
their food with gladness and simplicity of heart, 47 praising Yahweh
According to this scripture, breaking bread was not an uncommon thing to do on a daily basis. It was one of the customs in those days to eat their 'daily bread'. Even in Yahshua's prayer He said "Give us this day our daily bread".
So we cannot confirm that this scripture in Acts 20 is a Shabbat day
observance. Some will hang onto this one verse so that they don't have
to forsake tradition and keep the true Shabbat. You can search the
scriptures from Genesis to Revelations and you will not find a single
verse that says His Shabbat was changed to a different day. There is not
a single verse that tells us that the Ten Commandments are not to be
kept. And there is not a single verse that prophesied either of these
two events occurring! In fact, the scriptures declare the seventh day to
be the Shabbat in the Law, in the words of the prophets, in the
Seventh Day - 84 | First day - 0
There is also evidence that the early disciples kept the Shabbat on the true day:
"The primitive Christians did keep the Shabbat of the Jews; therefore the Christians for a long time together, did keep their conventions on the Shabbat, in which some portion of the Law were read: and this continued till the time of the Laodicean council." The Whole Works of Jeremey Taylor, Vol. IX, p416 (R. Heber's Edition, Vol.XII, p.416)
"The ancient Christians were very careful in the observation of Saturday, or the seventh day. It is plain that all the Oriental churches, and the greatest part of the world, observed the Shabbat as a festival. Athanasius likewise tells us that they held religious assemblies on the Shabbat, not because they were infected with Judaism, but to worship [Yahshua], the [Master] of the Shabbat, Epiphanius says the same." Antiquities of the Christian Church, Vol. II, Book XX, chap. 3, Sec. 1, 66.1137, 1138
"Ambrose, the celebrated bishop of
The text of
"One the venerable day of the Sun let the magistrates and people residing in cities rest, and let all workshops be closed. In the country however persons engaged in agriculture may freely and lawfully continue their pursuits because it often happens that another day is not suitable for gain-sowing or vine planting; lest by neglecting the proper moment for such operations the bounty of heaven should be lost."
Seems to me that it wasn't Yahweh's Shabbat which forbids any kind of work at all on His day!
Later, those who observed the Shabbat were persecuted and killed by the Catholic church:
When the Jesuit St. Francis Xavier arrived in
"The Jewish wickedness" of which Xavier complained was evidently the
Sabbath-keeping among those native Christians as we shall see in our
next quotation. When one of these Shabbat-keeping Christians was taken
by the Inquisition he was accussed of having *Judaized*; which means
having conformed to the ceremonies of the Mosaic Law; such as not eating
pork, hare, fish without scales, of having attended the solemnisation of
the Shabbat." Account of the Inquisition at
"Of an hundred persons condemned to be burnt as Jews, there are scarcely four who profess that faith at their death; the rest exclaiming and protesting to their last gasp that they are Christians, and have been so during their whole lives." Ibid p.64
Today, some of the leading Baptists even have admitted that the Sunday Shabbat isn't in the scriptures:
"There was and is a commandment to keep holy the Shabbat day, but
that Shabbat day was not on Sunday...It will be said, however, and with
some show of triumph, that the Shabbat was transferred from the seventh
to the first day of the week....where can the record of such a
transaction be found? Not in the New Testament. Of course, I quite
Thanks to www.eliyah.com for this article
How should we keep the
Those who think that since we are in Yahshua, everyday is the Shabbat would think twice if they knew that if this were the case, then they would never be permitted to work or do anything having to do with our own pleasures on the Shabbat. There are many blessings attached to keeping the Shabbat day holy. So lets find out what it means to keep this day Holy:
Deut 5:13 (NKJV) Six days you shall labor and do all your work, 14 but the seventh day [is] the Shabbat of Yahweh your Elohim. [In] [it] you shall do no work: you, nor your son, nor your daughter, nor your male servant, nor your female servant, nor your ox, nor your donkey, nor any of your cattle, nor your stranger who [is] within your gates, that your male servant and your female servant may rest as well as you.
So not only are we to rest, but those who work for us are to rest also. If we own a business, it is not acceptable to have all the employees working while we enjoy a restful Shabbat day. This commandment also includes anyone who we temporarily hire to work for us. For instance, when we go to restaurants we are hiring the cook and the waiter and the person who rings up the bill as a servant to work for us. Also anytime we purchase anything on the Shabbat such as groceries and other merchandise we are hiring others to stock the shelves, clean up and ring up the bill for us because we are paying for their service when we purchase the items. Nehemiah rebukes buying and selling quite sharply in this scripture:
Nehe 13:15 (NKJV) In those days I saw [people] in Judah treading wine
presses on the Shabbat, and bringing in sheaves, and loading donkeys
with wine, grapes, figs, and all [kinds] [of] burdens, which they
brought into Jerusalem on the Shabbat day. And I warned [them] about the
day on which they were selling provisions. 16 Men of Tyre dwelt there
also, who brought in fish and all kinds of goods, and sold [them] on the
Shabbat to the children of
So buying and selling is clearly forbidden on the Shabbat. Going to restaurants and shopping malls and grocery stores is no way to keep the Shabbat holy. The Shabbat is a day of rest and prayer and worship. Not a day for doing our own pleasures:
Isai 58:13 "If you turn away your foot from the Shabbat, [From] doing your pleasure on My holy day, And call the Shabbat a delight, The holy [day] of Yahweh honorable, And shall honor Him, not doing your own ways, Nor finding your own pleasure, Nor speaking [your] [own] words,
14 Then you shall delight yourself in Yahweh; And I will cause you to ride on the high hills of the earth, And feed you with the heritage of Jacob your father. The mouth of Yahweh has spoken."
So keeping the Shabbat day holy not only means that we aren't to buy
or sell, but also means that we are to refrain from our own pleasures
such as sporting events, television, movies, etc. Also we are not even
to speak our own words! Even our speech should be about Yahweh and His
word. I assure you, if we keep the Shabbat day in this manner it will be
much easier keeping Yahweh's commandments because we have one day each
week to refresh ourselves spiritually. It is a day that we can look
forward to during the week that we can fully refresh ourselves both
physically and spiritually. Yahweh never made our bodies to withstand
constant labor day after day. It is no wonder that so many
Cooking and Preparation day.
Exod 16:23 (NKJV) Then he said to them, "This [is] [what] Yahweh has said: `Tomorrow [is] a Shabbat rest, a holy Shabbat to Yahweh. Bake what you will bake [today], and boil what you will boil; and lay up for yourselves all that remains, to be kept until morning.' "
On preparation day, we should prepare our food that will be eaten on the Shabbat so that we will not have to cook or prepare it on the Shabbat. There are many variations of how to do this which will not be discussed in this study. I encourage all who want to know more to either email me or study it out for themselves.
What is permitted on the Shabbat?
John 5:10 (NKJV) The Jews therefore said to him who was cured, "It is the Shabbat; it is not lawful for you to carry [your] bed."
Luke 13:14 (NKJV) But the ruler of the synagogue answered with indignation, because Yahshua had healed on the Shabbat; and he said to the crowd, "There are six days on which men ought to work; therefore come and be healed on them, and not on the Shabbat day."
Luke 6:7 (NKJV) So the scribes and Pharisees watched Him closely, whether He would heal on the Shabbat, that they might find an accusation against Him.
Luke 6:1 (NKJV) Now it happened on the second Shabbat after the first that He went through the grainfields. And His disciples plucked the heads of grain and ate [them], rubbing [them] in [their] hands. 2 And some of the Pharisees said to them, "Why are you doing what is not lawful to do on the Shabbat?"
Note that in the above verses that the issue was not whether or not to keep the Shabbat but rather how the Shabbat should be kept! Let's look at Yahshua's response to these accusations:
Healing on the Shabbat:
Luke 13:15 (NKJV) The Master then answered him and said, "Hypocrite! Does not each one of you on the Shabbat loose his ox or donkey from the stall, and lead [it] away to water it? 16 "So ought not this woman, being a daughter of Abraham, whom Satan has bound--think of it--for eighteen years, be loosed from this bond on the Shabbat?"
Luke 14:5 (NKJV) Then He answered them, saying, "Which of you, having a donkey or an ox that has fallen into a pit, will not immediately pull him out on the Shabbat day?" 6 And they could not answer Him regarding these things.
John 5:16 (NKJV) For this reason the Jews persecuted Yahshua, and sought to kill Him, because He had done these things on the Shabbat. 17 But Yahshua answered them, "My Father has been working until now, and I have been working."
Mark 2:27 (NKJV) And He said to them, "The Shabbat was made for man, and not man for the Shabbat.
John 7:22 (NKJV) "Moses therefore gave you circumcision (not that it is from Moses, but from the fathers), and you circumcise a man on the Shabbat. 23 "If a man receives circumcision on the Shabbat, so that the law of Moses should not be broken, are you angry with Me because I made a man completely well on the Shabbat?
Also take into consideration that the Levites sacrificed animals on the Shabbat day and therefore had to work. This is Yahshua's answer to them when the disciples began to pluck grain to eat on the Shabbat:
Matt 12:3 (NKJV) But He said to them, "Have you not read what David did when he was hungry, he and those who were with him: 4 "how he entered the house of Yahweh and ate the showbread which was not lawful for him to eat, nor for those who were with him, but only for the priests ? 5 "Or have you not read in the law that on the Shabbat the priests in the temple profane the Shabbat , and are blameless? 6 "Yet I say to you that in this place there is [One] greater than the temple. 7 "But if you had known what [this] means, `I desire mercy and not sacrifice,' you would not have condemned the guiltless
Yahweh expects us to keep the Shabbat day holy. But it is always ok to do good on the Shabbat day and clearly Yahshua and the disciples did not have time to prepare for the Shabbat because they were doing Yahweh's work. So if we have to do a little work on the Shabbat or cause another to do a little work on the Shabbat for Yahweh's purpose then this is not breaking the Shabbat. Of course one could take this to the extreme as well and say that it is impossible for them to refrain from going to work on the Shabbat or they would be fired and then not have any food. This is ridiculous. Yahweh will provide for us. We needn't be concerned about our food if we are obeying His Shabbat.
So, in summary we can see that Yahweh wants us to keep His Shabbat Holy by not working, buying, selling, causing others to work for us, speaking idle or vain words or doing our own pleasures on the Shabbat. There are only exceptions if we are fulfilling Yahweh's purpose for something. And this I leave to one's own heart for only Yahweh knows our heart. To add a bunch of laws to try and apply to specific situations is legalism. And this is what the scribes and Pharisees were practicing. Yahshua clearly taught against that.
Thanks to www.eliyah.com for this article
Roman Catholic and Protestant Confessions About Sunday
Otherwise Known As:
- Examples -
"There was never any formal or authoritative change from the Jewish seventh day Sabbath to the Christian first day observance" William Owen Carver, The Lord's Day in One Day p.49
Roman Catholic: No such law in the bible "Nowhere in the bible do we find that [Yahshua] or the apostles ordered that the Sabbath be changed from Saturday to Sunday. We have the commandment of [Yahweh] given to Moses to keep holy the Sabbath day, that is, the seventh day of the week, Saturday. Today, most Christians keep Sunday because it has been revealed to us by the [Roman] church outside the bible." Catholic Virginian, Oct. 3, 1947
Question: "Have you not any other way of proving that the Church has
power to institute festivals of precept?" Answer: "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
Some theologians have held that G-d likewise directly determined the
Sunday as the day of worship in the NEW LAW, that he himself has
explicitly substituted Sunday for the Sabbath. But this theory is
entirely abandoned. It is now commonly held that G-d simply gave His
church the power to set aside whatever day or days she would deem
suitable as holy days. The church chose Sunday, the first day of the
week, and in the course of time added other days as holy days." John
Laux A Course in Religion for
Anglican/Episcopal: The Catholics changed it "We have made the change from the seventh day to the first day, from Saturday to Sunday, on the authority of the one holy Catholic Church" Bishop Seymour Why We Keep Sunday
Lutheran: They err in teaching Sunday Sabbath But they err in teaching that Sunday has taken the place of the Old Testament Sabbath and therefore must be kept as the seventh day had to be kept by the children of Israel.....These churches err in their teaching, for scripture has in no way ordained the first day of the week in place of the Sabbath. There is simply no law in the New Testament to that effect" John Theodore Mueller, Sabbath or Sunday, pp.15, 16
"We have seen how gradually the impression of the Jewish Sabbath
faded from the mind of the Christian church, and how completely the
newer thought underlying the observance of the first day too possession
of the church. We have seen that the Christian of the first three
centuries never confused one with the other, but for a time celebrated
"They [Roman Catholics] refer to the Sabbath Day, as having been
changed into the L-rd's Day, contrary to the Decalogue, as it seems.
Neither is there any example whereof they make more than concerning the
changing of the Sabbath Day. Great, say they, is the power of the
Church, since it has dispensed with one of the Ten commandments!"
Presbyterian: Sunday kept the Gentiles happy "Sunday being the first day of which the Gentiles solemnly adored that planet and called it Sunday, partly from its influence on that day especially, and partly in respect to its divine body (as they conceived it) the Christians thought fit to keep the same day and the same name of it, that they might not appear carelessly peevish, and by that means hinder the conversion of the Gentiles, and bring a greater prejudice that might be otherwise taken against the gospel" T.M. Morer, Dialogues on the L-rd's Day
Moody Bible Institute: "Sabbath was before Sinai" "The Sabbath was
Methodist: Yahshua did not abolish the moral law The moral law
contained in the Ten Commandments, and enforced by the prophets, He [Yahshua]
did not take away. It was not the design of His coming to revoke any
part of this. This is a law which can never be
"Take the matter of Sunday. There are indications in the new testament as to how the church came to keep the first day of the week as its day of worship, but there is no passage telling Christians to keep that day or to transfer the Jewish Sabbath to that day." Harris Franklin Rall, Christian Advocate July 2, 1942 pg. 26
Thanks to www.eliyah.com for this article
Recapping the Facts
There is no biblical command, example or even inference that the Shabbat day has been abolished or changed to the first day of the week. Following Yahshua's death, the Shabbat was observed by His followers. The first day of the week (beginning Saturday at sunset) they came to the tomb to anoint His body. But they found His tomb empty. At His first appearance since His resurrection, Yahshua found His disciples behind locked dorrs because they were afraid of the Jews. This was not to celebrate the resurrection. They did not believe that He had risen! It was the earliest opportunity He had to go and prove to the disciples that He was not dead, but living.
No scripture concerning the first day of the week gives authority to
replace Shabbat worship with Sunday observance. Whether these eight New
Testament passages even refer to Sunday is not entirely clear. In each
of the verses, the word day appears in Italics or parentheses in the
King James and New King James. That means that the word day did
To say that the Shabbat has been changed to the first day of the week is to say that the Ten commandments are no longer necessary to keep. For one of the commandments is:
Exod 20:9 (NKJV) Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day [is] the Shabbat of Yahweh your Elohim.
It is the day that He sanctified at Creation:
Gene 2:2 (NKJV) And on the seventh day Elohim ended His work which He
had done, and He rested on the seventh day from all His work which He
had done. 3 Then Elohim blessed the seventh day and sanctified it,
because in it He rested from all His work which Elohim had created and
The Ten commandments were written in stone by Yahweh's own finger.
Reve 11:19 (NKJV) Then the
Do you suppose that the 4th commandment is cut out of the Ten Commandments in this ark? Or do you suppose that the 4th commandment has the entire section about Him resting on the 7th day scratched out? All of the Ten Commandments were written in stone to signify that it is forever.
End Part 2 of 2
This DVD series reveals Yeshua in the entire Bible (Psalm 40:7, Luke 24:44). Yeshua is in the Torah. He created the heavens and earth, made covenant with Abraham, led the children of Israel out of Egypt, gave the Torah at Mount Sinai, is the bridegroom of Israel and the glory of God that filled the tabernacle. Yeshua died on the tree to unite the twelve tribes of Israel (John 10:16-17, 11:49-52). Yeshua will gather the twelve tribes of Israel during the tribulation period and be glorified. He will reign during the Messianic Era as King over the whole earth teaching the Torah to all nations. While revealing Yeshua from Genesis to Revelation, this DVD series also teaches the basic principles of the Hebraic roots of Christianity, including who is the house of Jacob, Torah is for all believers in Yeshua, and Two Houses and the New Testament. Finally, this DVD series gives a Hebraic perspective of the end of days. In all, twelve hours of power packed teaching!