There is an increasing conflict surrounding the Lord’s Day/Sunday/Sabbath. We hold to Confessional Standards at Lifespring Church, using the 1689 Confession (Westminister), so when we teach through the confession yearly, this topic brings the most discussion. Yet in all of this, I have found almost all of the vehement arguments operate from an individualistic framework: What is forbidden for me on Sunday? What can I do?
What Is The Problem? “I.” “Me.” “Me and God”. Let me say that that is the entirely wrong operating system from which to operate, regardless if you are a Sabbatarian, new covenant person, dispensationalist, etc.
Christ saved you out of darkness and placed you in the family of God, the church. You are not autonomous. Biblically, there is no such existence carved out for a true Christian to be “church-less” and not join the church in all her physical gatherings. Christianity is a people.
Therefore, our church’s answer to both the Sabbatarians and Libertarians regarding what you do and don’t do on Sundays, what is permissible, and what is forbidden, it is to re-frame the conversion, not about Sabbath, but covenant community? We should always think about our faith in Christ Jesus “covenantally?”
Does not Scripture command Love the Lord your God, and…Love your neighbor as yourself? One cannot separate these commandments into silos or separate paths—if we commit to the latter in light of the former, the Sabbath/Sunday questions will be answered.
Therefore, join the church and commit to participating with, worshiping alongside, and serving your brothers and sisters with whom you have covenanted in the local church. Show up early and stay late on Sunday. Let neither work nor a sports league gets even play into the equation. These will always take time and focus away from your commitment to your church family. Will work or a sports league take you away from the church? The answer is obvious. Christianity is the pre-emptive and permanent team sport. It is the one to be prioritized.
When the formal and informal gathering of worship, prayer, edification, and teaching of your church ends, enjoy the day of rest and refreshment.