First Sabbath or First Day?

And he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up, and according to his custom he entered into the synagogue on the day of the Sabbath and stood up to read. 

Luke 4:16

After celebrating a couple Sabbaths with some new friends we have made over the course of the last few weeks, I want to share some thoughts about the Sabbaths and the blessings they bring.

Acts 20:7 records the disciples meeting on the first day of the week. What if I told you that this is an erroneous translation?

Act 20:7 And upon the first day of the week, when the disciples came together to break bread, Paul preached unto them, ready to depart on the morrow; and continued his speech until midnight.

In honest translations, the word “day” is italicized because it is an inserted word found no where in the original language. Here is the Strong’s numbers in the verse.

e-Sword Act 20:7 AndG1161 uponG1722 theG3588 firstG3391 day of theG3588 week,G4521 when theG3588 disciplesG3101 came togetherG4863 to breakG2806 bread,G740 PaulG3972 preachedG1256 unto them,G846 readyG3195 to departG1826 on theG3588 morrow;G1887 andG5037 continuedG3905 his speechG3056 untilG3360 midnight.G3317

G4521 and G3588 are mistranslated to “day of the week”. There is no word “day” in the text, and translators desperately wanted to make this about Sunday. Let’s look at Strong’s G4521, translated “week”.

G4521
σάββατον
sabbaton
Thayer Definition:
1) the seventh day of each week which was a sacred festival on which the Israelites were required to abstain from all work
1a) the institution of the sabbath, the law for keeping holy every seventh day of the week
1b) a single sabbath, sabbath day
2) seven days, a week

This word most definitely means Sabbath, even if we want to call it a week, it is the end of the week. So how do we make sense of this verse without the erroneously inserted word “day” and mistranslating the Greek word Sabbaton to “week”? The context helps us understand once one understands the feast days of Yahweh.

Act 20:16 For Paul had determined to sail by Ephesus, because he would not spend the time in Asia: for he hasted, if it were possible for him, to be at Jerusalem the day of Pentecost.

Pentecost is the feast of Shavuot that is determined by counting seven Sabbaths after Passover.

Lev 23:15 “‘And you shall count for yourselves from the day after the Sabbath, from the day of your bringing the wave offering’s sheaf—there shall be seven full weeks.
Lev 23:16 Until the day after the seventh Sabbath you shall count fifty days; then you shall present a new grain offering for Yahweh.

The verses preceding Acts 21:7 tells us it is after Passover and the week of Unleavened Bread.

Act 20:5 These went on ahead and were waiting for us at Troas,
Act 20:6 but we sailed away from Philippi after the days of Unleavened Bread, and in five days we came to them at Troas, where we stayed for seven days.

Acts 20:7 should read “and upon the first Sabbath, when the disciples came to break bread”.

The Cepher translation gets it right.

Act 20:7 And upon the first Shabbath, when the Talmidiym came together to break bread, Pa’al preached unto them, ready to depart on the morrow; and continued his speech until midnight.

For a second witness to this concept, we can turn to this account in Luke from the English Standard Version.

Luk 6:1 And it came to pass on the second sabbath after the first, that he went through the corn fields; and his disciples plucked the ears of corn, and did eat, rubbing them in their hands.
Luk 6:2 And certain of the Pharisees said unto them, Why do ye that which is not lawful to do on the sabbath days?

“Second Sabbath” is Strong’s G1207, which is the second Sabbath in the counting to Pentecost. “Second after the first”.

G1207
δευτερόπρωτος
deuteroprōtos
Thayer Definition:
1) second-first
2) the second of the first Sabbaths after the feast of the Passover

One must apply the whole of scripture to understand what is written. It is also imperative to learn the feast days of Yahweh to understand what is happening during recorded events. Putting forth the idea that the believers of the first century would abandon the fourth commandment does not really make sense until we realize it is the goal of our enemy to rob us of the blessings associated with the Sabbaths. Jeremiah warned us of this.

Jer 8:7 Even the stork in heaven knows its appointed time, and the turtledove, and the swallow, and the song bird, they observe the time of their coming. But my people do not know the ordinance of Yahweh.
Jer 8:8 How can you say, ‘We are wise and the law of Yahweh is with us’? Look, surely the lying stylus of the scribes has made it a lie.
Jer 8:9 The wise will be put to shame, they will be dismayed, and they will get taken. Look, they have rejected the word of Yahweh, and what is wisdom to them?
Jer 8:10 Therefore I will give their wives to others, their fields to conquerors, because from the smallest to the greatest, all of them make profit for unlawful gain, from prophet to priest, all of them practice deceit.
Jer 8:11 And they have treated the wound of the daughter of my people lightly, saying, ‘Peace, peace,’ but there is no peace.

The Bereans were considered more noble than the Thessalonians because they searched the scriptures daily to see if the things Paul was explaining to them were true.

Act 17:10 The brothers immediately sent Paul and Silas away by night to Berea, and when they arrived they went into the Jewish synagogue.
Act 17:11 Now these Jews were more noble than those in Thessalonica; they received the word with all eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily to see if these things were so.

Be like the Bereans and not like the Thessalonians. Search these matters out in scripture for yourself. There will be no one to point the blame to when we meet Messiah. Jesus and Paul both kept the Sabbath as Yah commands.

Feature image by Evgeni Tcherkasski on Unsplash.

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