What does it mean to keep the Sabbath as a Christian?
We should allow Scripture to answer that. Let’s read what the apostle Paul declares in Colossians 2:16-17. “Let no man therefore judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of an holyday, or of the new moon, or of the sabbath days: Which are a shadow of things to come; but the body is of Christ.”
“One man esteemeth one day above another: another esteemeth every day alike. Let every man be fully persuaded in his own mind.”Romans 14:5
These Scriptures make it clear that, for the Christian, Sabbath-keeping is a matter of spiritual freedom, not a command from God. It is a matter which each Christian needs to fully be convinced in his/her own mind.
Sabbath-keeping was not one of the commands the apostles felt was necessary to force on Gentile believers.
Latter-day Saints believe the Sabbath is a day of worship.
Why just one day. We should worship God every day, not just on Saturday or Sunday! There is freedom in Christ (2 Corinthians 3:17; Galatians 5:1). And those who choose to practice Sabbath-keeping should not judge those who do not keep the Sabbath. Further, those who do not keep the Sabbath should avoid being a stumbling block (1 Corinthians 8:9) to those who do keep the Sabbath.
Paul sums up the whole issue in Galatians 5:13-14.
“For, brethren, ye have been called unto liberty; only use not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by love serve one another. For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this; Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.”
In this way, keeping the Sabbath becomes an issue of conscience where each believer is to follow the leading of the Holy Spirit in their life, come to their own convictions, but not convince others that they are wrong in their personal convictions on this issue.
There are always people who want to burden others with aspects of the Old Covenant or Law. They want there to be outward demands that make people feel inwardly holy. They want to impose law over grace. That is called religion!
Jesus can be our Sabbath because as it says in Matthew 12:8, He is “…Lord even of the sabbath day.” He decides the true meaning of the Sabbath because He created it.
The New Testament says that “The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath.”
Jesus was restating the principle that the Sabbath rest was instituted to relieve man of his labors – Just as He came to relieve us our attempting to achieve salvation by our efforts or works.
We no longer rest for only one day, but forever cease our laboring to attain God’s favor. Please read Hebrews 4:9-11.
“There remaineth therefore a rest to the people of God. For he that is entered into his rest, he also hath ceased from his own works, as God did from his. Let us labor therefore to enter into that rest, lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief.”