The Nazarene Way of Essenic Studies
Sunday is "Not" The Sabbath ~
From Sabbath To "Sun" day

So the heavens and the earth and everything in them were completed. By the seventh day God had finished the work he had been doing. So on the seventh day he rested from all of his work. God blessed the seventh day and made it holy. ~Genesis 2:1-2 NIV

Sunday is "Not" The Sabbath; From Sabbath To "Sun" day.

"Remember the Sabbath day, and keep it holy. Six days you shall labor, and do all your work; but the seventh day is a Sabbath to The Lord your God." (Exodus 20:8-10 RSV)

The Ancient "God"

Since ancient times, the sun has been a favorite "God" or God symbol of people all around the world. The Babylonians, Persians, Egyptians, Greeks and Romans all had their sun gods.

The native peoples of North and South America widely practiced sun worship, as did their Asian ancestors. The Europeans too were deeply involved in sun worship, and many of their sun-God festivals were carried over with their conversion to Christianity. These can still be seen today in the Easter bonfire and sunrise services, and the Christmas burning of the Yule log.

Sun worship was also widely practiced by the people of the Middle East, and even the Israelites sometimes practiced it.

The Halo

The heads of Saints didn't really glow as is so often portrayed in religious art. The use of the halo, or nimbus, originated with the Greeks and Romans to represent their sun God, Helios. Later artists adopted it for use in Christian images.

God's Calendar and The Roman Calendar

Today, the names that are used for the days of the week are all named after the sun, moon, or pagan gods. Sunday ("sun" day), Monday ("moon" day), Tuesday ("Tiwe's" day), Wednesday ("Woden's" day), Thursday ("Thor's" day), Friday ("Frie's" day) and Saturday ("Saturn's" day) are all pagan in origin.

Throughout the Bible, the days of the week were identified by number, from first to seventh. Only the seventh day was given a name, the Sabbath: "Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall labor, and do all your work; but the seventh day is a Sabbath to The Lord your God." (Exodus 20:8-10 RSV)

As well, any day prior to a Sabbath, whether the regular weekly seventh-day Sabbath, or any of the annual Sabbaths (Passover, Unleavened Bread, Pentecost, Trumpets, Atonement, Tabernacles) was designated as a "Preparation day."

From Sabbath To "Sun" day

The Fourth Commandment is to observe the seventh-day Sabbath. All of the righteous people of the Bible, from Genesis to Revelation, including Jesus Himself (e.g. Luke 4:16), observed the Sabbath. No where in the Bible, including after Christ's resurrection, will you find people observing the first day of the week, Sunday, as a replacement for the Sabbath.

This reality was freely admitted by Roman Catholic Cardinal Gibbon in his Faith Of Our Fathers: "But you may read the Bible from Genesis to Revelation, and you will not find a single line authorizing the sanctification of Sunday. The Scriptures enforce the religious observance of Saturday, a day which we never sanctify."

So, why do so many Christian-professing churches use Sunday for the Sabbath? And the big question, should they be doing so?

Who Decided On Sunday?

Sunday worship was not practiced according to the Bible, or because of the events of the crucifixion and resurrection. All of the first Christians, including Peter, Paul, all of the apostles, Mary and Joseph, all of the people who wrote the Bible, and Jesus himself, all observed the Sabbath on the seventh-day.

So, where did Sunday worship come from?

Gradually, the Roman empire that originally persecuted the Christians began to adopt Christianity, or rather, its own self-serving version of Christianity, which was a blend of politics and religion, some usurped teachings of the Nazarene, but consisted mostly of Roman paganism - included worship of the Roman sun god.

In 321 AD, the Roman emperor Constantine issued an edict which outlawed work on the "venerable day of the sun," Sunday, and within 3 years the "corrected" version of Christianity had become the official religion of the Roman empire. From that, the Roman Catholic Church began the commonly-accepted Sunday observance of today.

By the fourth century, only Jews (by then the Sabbath was becoming known as the "Jewish" Sabbath), and a relatively few number of Christians continued to observe the original seventh-day Sabbath.

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