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Author Topic: Lord's Day vs. Sabbath - which is the day to worship/day of resurrection?  (Read 1735 times) Average Rating: 0
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lizzyd
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« on: June 15, 2010, 08:26:26 AM »

I was on another forum discussing the Lord's Day vs. the Sabbath with someone who I believe is a "Messianic Christian." I had stated that the reason the Lord's Day is on Sunday is because that is the day of the resurrection, and I had quoted several sections of the OrthodoxWiki page.

Anyway this person came back and said "if you count three days in the grave from Passover Eve (when Yeshua died) He did not rise on Sunday, but rather before sunset on Saturday" thereby rendering the Lord's Day as an invalid made-up invention, I guess.

I had never heard a statement like this before. I was having trouble finding any more information on this. Can anyone provide me some direction?
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« Reply #1 on: June 15, 2010, 09:44:25 AM »

"if you count three days in the grave from Passover Eve (when Yeshua died) He did not rise on Sunday, but rather before sunset on Saturday"

I think the shortest and most honest answer would be that we (Orthodox Christians) ourself do not engage in speculation on how days were counted by Jews back then, but that we trust in that the Apostles' way of counting was transmitted to the Church.

If this would not be true then somewhere along the line there would have been an enormous amount of really stupid people who misunderstood the apostolic teaching. These people would also have been geographically spread all over the roman empire. Also it would also mean that there would be no single person smart enough to oppose this stupidity in writing.

The alternative is of course that there was a great conspiracy that spanned the whole roman empire. The day of worship for all Christians was changed overnight and not a single argument against this survived the "purge" that must have happened.

Both of these alternatives sounds stupid to anyone who accepts arguments coming from outside Holy Scripture. Sola Scriptura always wins because it can argue for the most stupid things without concern for common sense.
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« Reply #2 on: June 15, 2010, 09:54:30 AM »

Sola scriptura heck: all four gospels specifically say "first day of the week". Matthew is the only one to give a specific time, and he says right before dawn. What more do they want?

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« Reply #3 on: June 15, 2010, 10:16:14 AM »

Sola scriptura heck: all four gospels specifically say "first day of the week". Matthew is the only one to give a specific time, and he says right before dawn. What more do they want?
Grin Looks like you have to rip out a few pages of Holy Scripture to make the case that Jesus rose from the dead on a Saturday. Thank you for your much better post KebleGrin
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« Reply #4 on: June 15, 2010, 11:00:39 AM »

I was on another forum discussing the Lord's Day vs. the Sabbath with someone who I believe is a "Messianic Christian." I had stated that the reason the Lord's Day is on Sunday is because that is the day of the resurrection, and I had quoted several sections of the OrthodoxWiki page.

Anyway this person came back and said "if you count three days in the grave from Passover Eve (when Yeshua died) He did not rise on Sunday, but rather before sunset on Saturday" thereby rendering the Lord's Day as an invalid made-up invention, I guess.

I had never heard a statement like this before. I was having trouble finding any more information on this. Can anyone provide me some direction?

I have a hard time following this person's timeline, unless they're merely going by our Liturgical calendar (where we celebrate the Crucifixion on Thursday night).  Jesus died in an afternoon on Friday, and 3 (including Friday) days puts us at Sunday.  Add to this what Keble and Robert W have provided, and I just don't see how the person escapes the Scriptural witness.
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« Reply #5 on: June 15, 2010, 11:24:22 AM »

For a related thread, see: http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,4610.0.html
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« Reply #6 on: June 15, 2010, 11:26:58 AM »

I was on another forum discussing the Lord's Day vs. the Sabbath with someone who I believe is a "Messianic Christian." I had stated that the reason the Lord's Day is on Sunday is because that is the day of the resurrection, and I had quoted several sections of the OrthodoxWiki page.

Anyway this person came back and said "if you count three days in the grave from Passover Eve (when Yeshua died) He did not rise on Sunday, but rather before sunset on Saturday" thereby rendering the Lord's Day as an invalid made-up invention, I guess.

I had never heard a statement like this before. I was having trouble finding any more information on this. Can anyone provide me some direction?

Yes I've heard many uninformed Messianics say this and this is relatively easy to answer:

First off Yeshua said that He would be in the tomb for 3 days and 3 nights. Back then a day consisted of 12 hours not 24 so I don't advocate trying to calculate an exact time He arose according to our own calendar. That said whilst "three days and three nights" might not equal exactly 72 hours, I'm of the opinion that it's most likely referring to 3 periods of darkness coupled with 3 periods of light (in that order) which would be quite close. I take "three days and three nights" to mean that He will not be arising anytime before 3 periods of darkness and 3 periods of light had passed, which allows for more than 72 hours. While this certainly allows for a "Sunday" (i.e. first day of the week) Resurrection, it does not allow for a "Friday" (regular Shabbat) Crucifixion, as this actually equals less than "three days and three nights" even according to our modern calendar. If the Resurrection occurred on "Sunday" then the Crucifixion had to have occurred on "Wednesday". Yeshua is said to have died just before the "high holy Shabbat" (John 19:31) and this Shabbat was called the "high holy Shabbat" in order to distinguish it from the regular weekly Shabbat (sundown "Friday" to sundown "Saturday"). This doesn't happen in every Pesach cycle but that seems to have been the case in that particular year.

I read a comprehensive analysis of this once. I will post excerpts when I have the time.

Sola scriptura heck: all four gospels specifically say "first day of the week". Matthew is the only one to give a specific time, and he says right before dawn. What more do they want?



But here's where it gets tricky. With the Hebrew calendar a "day" begins at sunset not sunrise, so while "dawn" means morning for us, "dawn" means evening for Jews. So then which "dawn" is Matthew referring to, Roman or Hebrew? Since Matthew specifically states that the approaching "dawn" is already on the first day of the week, it is most likely the dawn of "Sunday" morning. Yeshua could've arisen anytime from sunset on "Saturday" which was the beginning or "dawn" of the first day of the week to sunrise or "dawn" on "Sunday" morning in order to fulfill Yom HaBikkurim (Feat of First Fruits), the point is He rose on the first day of the week, not Shabbat.
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lizzyd
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« Reply #7 on: June 15, 2010, 11:49:10 AM »

Thanks everyone! I knew I would get some good input here.

I guess I was pretty naive in thinking that it was pretty much universal that anyone calling themselves a Christian would worship on Sunday... I knew of a few exceptions but had no idea that some of the Messianic crowd disputed this.
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« Reply #8 on: June 15, 2010, 08:04:30 PM »

Well, the SDAs worship on Saturday, of course, but it's because they observe the sabbath as laid out in the Torah, not because they have odd notions about the resurrection.
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« Reply #9 on: June 15, 2010, 10:03:45 PM »

I have seen pages and pages of posts on this on other forums. Christians have made all kinds of schedules to decide the exact day on which Jesus was crucified. One reason I accept a Sunday resurrection is because Saturday was the day of rest, so it seems Jesus would have "slept" that day.

The three days and nights thing is very confusing though. Jesus asked once aren't there 12 hours in a day? Like Nazarene said, day can mean 12 hours or 24 hours. And in Jesus' time Jews counted the "24-hour day" starting from 6 PM the previous day.

The best I can come up with is that Jesus meant he would be in the grave for 3 "24 hour periods". More confusing: if something happened on part of a day, then they counted that as happening for the day.

Fr George,
why would we celebrate the crucifixion on Thursday if it happened on Friday? Could this be a remnant of a memory that the Crucifixion happened on Thursday, thereby counting 3 nights - Thursday night, Friday night, Saturday night ? (I am using this in modern counting of time, Nazarene.)
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« Reply #10 on: June 15, 2010, 10:09:33 PM »

Fr George, why would we celebrate the crucifixion on Thursday if it happened on Friday? Could this be a remnant of a memory that the Crucifixion happened on Thursday, thereby counting 3 nights - Thursday night, Friday night, Saturday night ? (I am using this in modern counting of time, Nazarene.)

We celebrate it on Wednesday evening because the entire cycle of services from Palm Sunday afternoon through Holy Saturday afternoon has been shifted by 1/3 to 1/2 a day forward.  Thus, in the divine services we celebrate the events of Holy Thursday morning/afternoon on Holy Wednesday evening; Holy Thursday evening on Holy Thursday morning; Holy Friday morning/afternoon on Holy Thursday evening; Holy Friday evening on Holy Friday afternoon; etc.

We call it celebrating "in anticipation."  We call it celebrating in "God's time."  Whatever it is, it is how we celebrate at present.
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« Reply #11 on: June 15, 2010, 10:09:59 PM »

I have seen pages and pages of posts on this on other forums. Christians have made all kinds of schedules to decide the exact day on which Jesus was crucified. One reason I accept a Sunday resurrection is because Saturday was the day of rest, so it seems Jesus would have "slept" that day.

The three days and nights thing is very confusing though. Jesus asked once aren't there 12 hours in a day? Like Nazarene said, day can mean 12 hours or 24 hours. And in Jesus' time Jews counted the "24-hour day" starting from 6 PM the previous day.

The best I can come up with is that Jesus meant he would be in the grave for 3 "24 hour periods". More confusing: if something happened on part of a day, then they counted that as happening for the day.

Fr George,
why would we celebrate the crucifixion on Thursday if it happened on Friday? Could this be a remnant of a memory that the Crucifixion happened on Thursday, thereby counting 3 nights - Thursday night, Friday night, Saturday night ? (I am using this in modern counting of time, Nazarene.)

It is technically celebrated on Friday, since the day ends Liturgically at sunset... (typically Vespers) So even though today we call the day "Thursday" back in the days of the Early Christians, it would be considered Friday (or rather, the beginning of Friday).
At least that is what I've been told.
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« Reply #12 on: June 15, 2010, 10:30:26 PM »

This makes sense. We believe he was crucified on Friday, so we mark it earlier on that church-day.
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« Reply #13 on: June 15, 2010, 10:42:49 PM »

It is technically celebrated on Friday, since the day ends Liturgically at sunset... (typically Vespers) So even though today we call the day "Thursday" back in the days of the Early Christians, it would be considered Friday (or rather, the beginning of Friday).
At least that is what I've been told.

Holy Week is an interesting mix.  Vespers for Friday (the traditional evening service on Thursday night that marks the beginning of the Friday Liturgical Day) takes place Thursday morning, making the whole thing a bit more messy; however, there is a bit of consistency borne out in the choice of hymns and Gospel readings: even though the Vespers for Friday takes place in the morning on Thursday, the hymns are for Thursday evening, not Friday.

So in some ways (by the solar cycle) Holy Thursday evening begins our celebration of Holy Friday.  In some ways (by a "traditional" liturgical cycle) Holy Thursday morning begins our celebration of Holy Friday.
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« Reply #14 on: June 15, 2010, 11:35:48 PM »

Well, the SDAs worship on Saturday, of course, but it's because they observe the sabbath as laid out in the Torah, not because they have odd notions about the resurrection.

I would assume this would be the case with JW's as well, they being also from the Adventist movement?
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« Reply #15 on: June 15, 2010, 11:40:21 PM »

...the point is He rose on the first day of the week, not Shabbat.

Indeed, even in the hymnography of the Orthodox Church for Holy Week the liturgical texts make an explicit parallel between the Father resting on the seventh day and Christ resting in the tomb on the same day. Anyone who might be more familiar with those texts might be able to give a direct quote, but it seems that paying attention in church has paid off for me!
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« Reply #16 on: June 16, 2010, 12:25:08 AM »

Well, the SDAs worship on Saturday, of course, but it's because they observe the sabbath as laid out in the Torah, not because they have odd notions about the resurrection.

I would assume this would be the case with JW's as well, they being also from the Adventist movement?

The JWs are restorationists like the Millerites (SDAs), but they arose independently. JWs meet on Sunday and Saturday both, I would guess largely because the weekend is when they have the time free; they aren't sabbatarian.
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« Reply #17 on: June 16, 2010, 12:27:20 PM »

I have seen pages and pages of posts on this on other forums. Christians have made all kinds of schedules to decide the exact day on which Jesus was crucified. One reason I accept a Sunday resurrection is because Saturday was the day of rest, so it seems Jesus would have "slept" that day.

But Jesus did often have a different interpretation of the day of rest - he performed miracles, etc. on the Sabbath.

I guess we can't really know exactly when he arose - and I am not sure if that detail really matters? We know that it happened. And we know that the early church was meeting on the first day. From OrthodoxWiki:

Quote
The practice of observing the Divine Liturgy on the first day of the week has its origin in Apostolic times. Then, the first day of the week was a day of special observance for the Christian community as it assembled to celebrate the breaking of the bread as indicated in Acts 20:7 and I Cor 16:2. Later, the Didache of the first or second century gives the injunction: "On the Lord's Day come together and break bread. And give thanks, after confessing your sins that your sacrifice may be pure." The Christian writers St Justin Martyr and Tertullian of the third century mention assembling for worship on the first day of the week. By the fourth century the practice of the earlier times of setting aside first day of the week for assembly and rest began to be codified in both civil and church canons and specifically for the Orthodox Church in the canons of the Council of Nicea.


That is enough to settle it in my mind - but not enough for others who embrace sola scriptura, etc.
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« Reply #18 on: June 16, 2010, 12:29:18 PM »

Well, the SDAs worship on Saturday, of course, but it's because they observe the sabbath as laid out in the Torah, not because they have odd notions about the resurrection.

There's also a Seventh Day Baptist church. Must be a fairly small group, I had never heard of it until recently.
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« Reply #19 on: June 17, 2010, 04:02:21 AM »

That is enough to settle it in my mind - but not enough for others who embrace sola scriptura, etc.
The ironic thing about this, though, is that for proclaiming themselves to be followers of the tradition of sola scriptura, they base their doctrine on the day of the week the Resurrection occurred on calculations not based on anything found in the Scriptures.
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« Reply #20 on: June 17, 2010, 07:24:53 AM »

That is enough to settle it in my mind - but not enough for others who embrace sola scriptura, etc.
The ironic thing about this, though, is that for proclaiming themselves to be followers of the tradition of sola scriptura, they base their doctrine on the day of the week the Resurrection occurred on calculations not based on anything found in the Scriptures.

Good point. Smiley
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« Reply #21 on: March 11, 2011, 02:39:06 PM »

Fr. George,

It is kind of nice being able to correspond with a priest here on the OCF Smiley

It's alittle surprising to me that our celebration of the crucifixion on Wednesday evening is because
Quote
the entire cycle of services from Palm Sunday afternoon through Holy Saturday afternoon has been shifted by 1/3 to 1/2 a day forward.  Thus, in the divine services we celebrate the events of Holy Thursday morning/afternoon on Holy Wednesday evening; Holy Thursday evening on Holy Thursday morning; Holy Friday morning/afternoon on Holy Thursday evening; Holy Friday evening on Holy Friday afternoon; etc.

It makes sense that "We call it celebrating "in anticipation." Whatever it is, it is how we celebrate at present."

But I don't know why "We call it celebrating in "God's time."" or really why we make a 1/3 or 1/2 day shifts in celebration.

It seems that if an event occurred at a certain moment in the calendar, then we would celebrate it at that moment. And if it's in anticipation of the moment, then it suggests that God's time is somehow anticipatory.

Holy week is an interesting mix like you say, particularlyacross the globe. It seems like the calendar-celebration shift you mentioned might explain why in Jerusalem they celebrate the Paschal "Sabbath of Lights" on a Saturday. That is, the "Sabbath of Lights" seems to be a festival related to the Resurrection of Saturday-night / Sunday-morning, but it's celebrated Saturday afternoon. I was confused about this when I was writing my blogpost about the Sabbath of Light (rakovskii.livejournal.com)

What do you think?

It takes some effort to keep straight in my head the events of Holy Week, the celebration of those events, and the service-shifts you mentioned together with the fact that the Holy Land in the 1st century had an opposite order of day-night.  Cheesy

But it seems like it makes things messier that "Vespers for Friday (the traditional evening service on Thursday night that marks the beginning of the Friday Liturgical Day) takes place Thursday morning", because Such a shift seems to actually be the opposite of the trend of a shift in services that you mentioned.

Although it's true that "there is a bit of consistency borne out in the choice of hymns and Gospel readings: even though the Vespers for Friday takes place in the morning on Thursday, the hymns are for Thursday evening, not Friday. So in some ways (by the solar cycle) Holy Thursday evening begins our celebration of Holy Friday.  In some ways (by a "traditional" liturgical cycle) Holy Thursday morning begins our celebration of Holy Friday."

Father, Bless.



88Devin12

Thanks for sharing what you were told. It is funny how sometimes things we were told turn out to be rarely-known and valuable, and other times, apparently invented.

It's actually true that the Friday Crucifixion, celebrated Thursday night in the normal way of counting, is:
Quote
technically celebrated on Friday, since the day ends Liturgically at sunset... (typically Vespers) So even though today we call the day "Thursday" back in the days of the Early Christians, it would be considered Friday (or rather, the beginning of Friday).

Perhaps one problem is that, as Fr. George pointed out, we celebrate the events of "[1]Holy Thursday evening on Holy Thursday morning; [2]Holy Friday morning/afternoon on Holy Thursday evening", at least one of which would cut across the early Christians' days-counting system you mentioned.

Peace.



lizzyd,

Hello, you have some good knowledge about early Christianity.

Regarding my statement "One reason I accept a Sunday resurrection is because Saturday was the day of rest, so it seems Jesus would have "slept" that day.", you pointed out:

"But Jesus did often have a different interpretation of the day of rest - he performed miracles, etc. on the Sabbath."

That's a good point. The rule was that the Sabbath is a day of rest, but Jesus did miracles on the Sabbath. Jesus' miracles were good deeds, and it seems that morally speaking, Jesus wouldn't have to abstain from good deeds on the Sabbath. Plus, he also picked wheat or grain on the sabbath.

Still, it seems more likely that if Jesus was going to pick a day on which to rest, it seems more likely that he would choose the Sabbath on which to sleep.

I share your sentiments that "I guess we can't really know exactly when he arose - and I am not sure if that detail really matters? We know that it happened.", except maybe we could get a time machine and find out.

However, I doubt that simply knowing that the early Christians celebrated the Divine Liturgy on Sunday is enough. It's possible that they weren't sure if it happened on what date, or simple chose to have the DL on a different date than the one on which it happened. Rather it would be alot better to know that they had the DL on Sunday and that they also believed that the day they celebrated the DL was the day of the Resurrection.

On the other hand, Gospels said that the resurrection was on the first day, which means Sunday:
Mark 16:9 (KJV) says "Now when Jesus was risen early the first day of the week, he appeared first to Mary Magdalene, out of whom he had cast seven devils."

IMO, an assertion that this means "the first day after the [any] Sabbath", and then to propose that this wasn't a normal first day is less likely.

All the Best


PeterTheAleut and lizzyd,

Well, I'm sure you guys have a better handle than I do on them.

But still, they throw quotes around so much that I am doubtful that protestants who would deny that Sunday was the day of Resurrection "base their doctrine on the day of the week the Resurrection occurred on calculations not based on anything found in the Scriptures."

On the other hand, the contrary evidence is so strong, and such a view is such a rare one, I think they're mistaken that Sunday wasn't the "first day" described as the Resurrection day.

Peace
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« Reply #22 on: March 11, 2011, 03:25:11 PM »

Of course then there is the calendar issue to mix up the confusion.  Smiley

That's why I think it is sometimes too difficult to try to find the "exact date".    It's more of when we celebrate.
If we go off the Julian Calendar then that would throw off most Christians 3 out of 4 years.  If we go off the Julian Calendar using calculations of Messianic Jews, then it's even more thrown (but most of them use Gregorian).  If we include the international date line and consider the world is round, and not flat, and that every hour the "date changes somewhere" then in the USA we are plus or minus 12 hours from Israel time.  (Our 6th day exists in Israel's 7th and so forth - think Hawaii + or minus 17 is it?)

So dates are nearly impossible to get just right for "this" exact moment "this" many years ago.
 
Now the consideration of the tradition is truly what I hold as important.  The Eastern Orthodox using the Julian old calendar I'm pretty happy with.

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