In 363 AD, The Council of Laodicea met to form rules (canons) regulating the conduct of church members. One of the most significant of these rules outlawed the keeping of the sabbath (Saturday) and encouraging rest and worship on Sunday (the day of the sun) instead. The Council stated that, “Christians must not Judaize on the Sabbath, but must work on that day”
In 321 AD (forty years before the Council of Laodicea), Constantine issued a law to establish worship and rest on Sunday instead of Saturday (Sabbath). The edict says, “On the venerable day of the sun let the magistrates and people residing in cities rest, and let all workshops be closed.” The “venerable day of the sun” is a reference to Sunday, the day for worship of the Sun gods. This was a pagan tradition for thousands of years before Christ.
Constantine (and the Roman Empire in general) hated the Jews for their beliefs and encouraged pagan practices to replace the Biblical feasts, festivals, and sabbaths of the Lord.
“To the angel of the church in Laodicea write: These are the words of the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the ruler of God’s creation. I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other! So, because you are lukewarm–neither hot nor cold–I am about to spit you out of my mouth. You say, ‘I am rich; I have acquired wealth and do not need a thing.’ But you do not realize that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind and naked. I counsel you to buy from me gold refined in the fire, so you can become rich; and white clothes to wear, so you can cover your shameful nakedness; and salve to put on your eyes, so you can see. Those whom I love I rebuke and discipline. So be earnest, and repent. Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him, and he with me. To him who overcomes, I will give the right to sit with me on my throne, just as I overcame and sat down with my Father on his throne. He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.” (Revelation 3:14-22
I almost feel like this doesn’t even need an explanation.
The church in Laodicea abolished and outlawed the Sabbath (one of God’s Commandments). Who can do such a thing? What human or committee has the right to abolish one of God’s Laws. Only God has the power to abolish a Commandment.
The Sabbath was established at the creation of the world – “For in six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, but he rested on the seventh day.Therefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy
.” (Exodus 20:11
And was written in stone tablets by the hand of God – “The LORD wrote on these tablets what he had written before, the Ten Commandments he had proclaimed to you on the mountain, out of the fire, on the day of the assembly
.” (Deuteronomy 10:4
“Those whom I love I rebuke and discipline. So be earnest, and repent. Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him, and he with me.” (Revelation 3:19-20
The Laodiceans were being criticized for their neutrality and lack of zeal for God and His Commandments – being “lukewarm”. They were “poor, blind, and naked” an ironic statement about their lack spiritual wealth in contrast to their worldly wealth. And the statement about Jesus wanting to “eat” with them is a reference to the feasts and festivals of the Lord (Leviticus 23), which include Sabbath, The Passover and Unleavened Bread, Firstfruits, Feast of Weeks, Feast of Trumpets, Day of Atonement, and The Feast of Tabernacles – all of which were abolished by the Roman government under Constantine, who replaced God’s appointed feasts with Pagan festivals.
It is time for God’s people to repent of the sin of neglect, because for 1,700 years we forgot to remember His Sabbath. Jesus is “Lord of the Sabbath” and it is time for His people to remember that. Jesus is waiting to share a Sabbath meal with His people, but they have not let Him in. He stands at the door and knocks.
“He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.” (Revelation 3:22