What Day Is The Sabbath?

The Biblical truth on the true Sabbath day revealed from the Bible and history. Where in the Bible do we find one single legitimate scripture stating the Sabbath is changed to Sunday?
The real truth to what day is the Sabbath

Some Christians today are exhorting the Sabbath was changed to Sunday because they claim the New Testament Church worshipped habitually on the first day of the week. Acts 20:7 is the most commonly quoted scripture to support this argument, yet the truth is that this meeting did not fall on what we call a Sunday at all. What does the Bible really reveal about these first day of the week scriptures and does the phrase breaking bread always apply to communion? You are about learn several reasons why it is absolutely impossible for any of the first day of the week texts to be referring to the Lord’s Sabbath. All the relevant first day of the week scriptures and Sabbath to Sunday arguments are covered in detail. So read on to find out “what day is the Sabbath” from both the Bible and history.

To help find the answer to this question it is necessary to first prove when the Sabbath was created and first kept. The word translated “rested” in our English Bibles in Genesis 2:3 is actually “shabath” in the Hebrew and means Sabbath. Besides this evidence, God also said the Sabbath “is a sign between me and the children of Israel for ever…” Before we continue with this scripture, note the reason why and when God made the Sabbath from the remainder of this verse. It was because, “…in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, and on the seventh day he rested, and was refreshed.Exodus 31:17. So the Sabbath did exist from the beginning before sin and before Jews.

Some say the Sabbath was only for the Jews and that there is no record of the Sabbath being kept before the giving of the Ten Commandments in Exodus 20. Yet we find in Exodus 16 that God tested Israel (these were not Jews) if they would keep His Sabbath and more specifically, on the Seventh day. When they didn’t, God accused them of breaking all His Commandments and laws. What Commandments and laws if there is no mention of them been given yet? How could they be breaking the Sabbath and every other Commandment if they had not been given? Clearly they had been but not yet codified. There may be no written Bible record of them been given before Exodus 20 but the evidence is there that they certainly knew them and were keeping them. In Genesis 4:3-7, Cain brings an offering from the ground which represented righteousness by works and so God was angry with him but Abel brought the firstborn of his flock as a sin offering which represents righteousness by faith. You cannot have a sin offering unless there is a law. In verse 7, God says to Cain that sin is lying at the door. It is not possible for sin to exist where there is no law. Romans 4:15 teaches, “for where no law is, there is no transgression.” We are also told, “Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law.” 1 John 3:4. And this principle is amplified further by Paul’s statement in Romans 7:7 which says “I had not known sin, but by the law: for I had not known lust, except the law had said, Thou shalt not covet.” So the Commandments although not yet codified had to exist since creation or Cain could not have been guilty of murder. And what about Abraham? If there were no Commandments or laws given before Exodus 20, or in the book of Genesis, then what exactly is that God says Abraham was keeping when He says he kept His Commandments, statutes and laws? Genesis 26:5Because that Abraham obeyed my voice, and kept my charge, my commandments, my statutes, and my laws.” Joseph also revealed that he was aware of that same law. He said to Potiphar’s wife, “how then can I do this great wickedness, and SIN against God.” Genesis 39:9. Joseph knew that adultery was sin. The Commandments may not yet have been codified but they had certainly been given and were obviously been kept. Don’t let anyone try to tell you otherwise!

Did you know there are more than one hundred languages in the world where Saturday is still called the Sabbath day just as God named it at creation? This can be traced all the way back to the tower of Babel in Genesis 11 where Saturday was understood to be the Sabbath day and so was incorporated into the very name of the day.

Weekly language table showing the true Sabbath day

Note that the name of the Seventh day means “Sabbath” unless otherwise stated. (Excludes English and Latin names that originate from paganism)
Compiled by Dr. William Meade Jones, 1887

Language 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th Day Name
Amharic, Abyssinia
(Nearly related to Ge-ez)
One Second Third Fourth Fifth Eve (of Sabbath) san-bat Sabbath
Ancient Syriac Each day proceeds on and belongs to the Sabbath One into Sabbath Two into Sabbath Three into Sabbath Four into Sabbath Five into Sabbath Eve (of Sabbath) Shab-ba-tho
Arabic (Ancient and Modern) West Asia, E,W & N Africa The One The Two The Three The Four The Fifth Assembly (day, Muham) as-sabt The Sabbath
Arabic (Very old names) Business Day Light Moon War Chief Turning Day or Midweek Familiar or Society Day Eve (of Sabbath) Shi-yar Chief or Rejoicing Day
Assyrian Euphrates and Tigris Valleys, Mesopotamia First Second Third Fourth Fifth Sixth sa-ba-tu Sabbath
Babylonian (Written language 3800 B.C.) Euphrates & Tigris Valleys Mesopotamia First Second Third Fourth Fifth Sixth Sa-ba-tu
Chaldee Syriac Kurdistan and Urdmia, Persia One into Sabbath Two into Sabbath Three into Sabbath Four into Sabbath Five into Sabbath Eve (of Sabbath) Shap-ta
Coptic / Egypt
(Dead lang. for 200 years)
The First Day The 2nd Day The 3rd Day The 4th Day The 5th Day The 6th Day pi sabbaton The Sabbath
Falasha (Language of the Jews of Abyssinia) One Second Third Fourth Fifth Sixth yini sanbat The Sabbath
Ge-ez or Ethiopic Abyssinia (Ge-ez signifies “original”) One (day) Second Third Fourth Fifth Eve (of Sabbath) san-bat Sabbath
Hausa (Central Africa) The One (1st) The Two (2nd) The Three (3rd) The Four (4th) The Fifth The Assembly assebatu The Sabbath
(Ancient and Modern)
One into the Sabbath Second into the Sabbath Third into the Sabbath Fourth into the Sabbath Fifth into the Sabbath Eve of Holy Sabbath Shab-bath
Kabyle or Berber (Ancient Numidian) North Africa Day the One (First) Day the Two (2nd) Day the Three (3rd) Day the Four (4th) Day the Fifth The Assembly Day ghas or wars assebt The Sabbath Day
Maltese, Malta One (day) Two (and day) The 3 (3rd d.) The 4 (4th d.) Fifth (day) Assembly Is-sibt. The Sabbath
Orma or Galla South of Abyssinia (This language has two sets of names, the first being the oldest) Lady, Virgin Mary Day. Great or Festival Sabbath Second day. First Trade Day 3rd Day to the Sabbath. Second Trade Day 4th day to the Sabbath. Fourth (day) Fifth (day) Assembly (day) Last day of the half-week inclusive of 4th day Little or Humble or Solemn Sabbath (A day of no ceremonial display and no work)
Pashto or Afghan Afghanistan One to the Sabbath Two to Sabbath Three to Sabbath Four to Sabbath Five to Sabbath Assembly (day) khali - Unemployed-day, Shamba - Sabbath
Samaritan (Old Hebrew Letters) Nablus, Palestine Day One Day Second Day Third Day Fourth Day Fifth Day Sixth Shab-bath
Shemitic Hebrew Bible world-wide Day One Day Second Day Third Day Fourth Day Fifth Day the Sixth Yom hash-shab-bath Day the Sabbath
Tamashek or Towarek (From ancient Lybian or Numidian) Atlas Mountains, Africa. First day Second day Third day Fourth day Fifth day Assembly Day a-hal es-sabt The Sabbath Day
Targum Dialect of the Jews in Kurdistan Day One of the Seven Day 2nd of the Seven Day 3rd of the Seven Day 4th of the Seven Day 5th of the Seven Day of Eve (of Sabbath) yoy-met sha-bat kodesh Holy Sabbath Day
Targum of Onkelos (Hebrew Literature) Day One Day Second Day Third Day Fourth Day Fifth Day the Sixth Yom hash-shab-bath Day the Sabbath
Tigre Abyssinia
(Closely related to Ge-ez)
One (First day) Second Third Fourth Fifth Eve (of Sabbath) san-bat Sabbath
Urdu or Hindustani (2 day names) (Muhammadan and Hindu, India) One to Sabbath Sunday 2nd to Sabbath Moon-day 3rd to Sabbath Mars 4th to Sabbath Mercury 5th to Sabbath (Eve of Juma) Assembly (day) shamba - Sabbath sanichar - Saturn
English (Pagan names) Sunday Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday
French dimanche lundi mardi mercredi jeudi vendredi Samedi Sabbath day
German sonntag montag dienstag mittwoch donnerstag freitag Samstag
Greek             Sabbaton
Italian domenica lunedì martedì mercoledì giovedì venerdì Sabbato
Latin dies Solis dies Lunae dies Martis dies Mercurĭi dies Jovis dies Venĕris dies Saturni
Latin (Italy) dominica feria secunda feria tertia feria quarta feria quinta feria sexta Sabbatum
Polish niedziela poniedzialek wtorek środa czwartek Piątek Sobota
Portuguese domingo segunda-feira terça-feira quarta-feira quinta-feira sexta-feira Sabbado
Russian voskresenye ponedelnik vtornik sreda chetverg pyatnitsa Subbota
Spanish domingo lunes martes miércoles jueves viernes Sábado

Language List

Below you will find most of the one hundred plus languages where Saturday is still called the Sabbath that dates back to the tower of Babel in Genesis chapter 11 where God confused the languages and Saturday was understood to be the Sabbath day and was incorporated into the name of the day. Note carefully the names of the week days for the older languages. This is also extremely relevant information for proving what day is the Sabbath and that the Sabbath was not changed to Sunday in the Bible.

Language Word for Saturday/7thDay Meaning
Abyssinian Sanbat Sabbath
Afaghan Shamba Sabbath
Ancient Syriac Shab-ba-tho Sabbath
Arabic Assabt The Sabbath
Arabic (Very old names) Shi-yar Chief or rejoicing day
Armenian (Armenia) Shapat Sabbath
Babylonian Syriac (A Very Old Language) Sa-Ba-tu Sabbath
Bohemian Sobota Sabbath
Bulgarian (Bulgaria) Subbota Sabbath
Chaldee Syriac (Kurdistan,Urumia,Persia) Shaptu Sabbath
Congo (West Equatorial Africa) Sabbado or Kiansbula Sabbath
Coptic (Egypt) Pi sabbaton the Sabbath
D'oc. French (ancient and modern) Dissata Day Sabbath
Ecclesiastical Roman (Italy) Sabbatum Sabbath
Ethiopic (Abyssinia) San-bat Sabbath
French (France) Samedi Sabbath day
Greek Sabbaton Sabbath
Hausa (Central Africa) Assebatu the Sabbath
Hebrew Shabbath Sabbath
High German (Germany) Samstag Sabbath
Hindustani Shamba Sabbath
Illyrian (Dalmatia, Servia) Subota Sabbath
Italian (Italy) Sabbato Sabbath
Kabyle (North Africa, Ancient Numidan) Ghas assebt the Sabbath day
Kazani - TARTAR (East Russia) Subbota Sabbath
Kurdish (Kurdistan) Shamba Sabbath
Latin (Italy) Sabbatum Sabbath
Lusatian (Saxony) Sobota Sabbath
Malay Ari-Sabtu Day Sabbath
Maltese (Malta) Is-sibt the Sabbath
Ndebele (Zimbabwe) Sabatha Sabbath
New Slovenian (Illyria, in Austria) Sobota Sabbath
Norman French (10th -11th Centuries) Sabbedi Sabbath Day
Orma (South of Abyssiania) Zam-ba-da Sabbath
Osmanlian (Turkey) Yome-es-sabt day of the Sabbath
Pahlivi (ancient Persian) Shambid Sabbath
Pasto (Afghanistan) Shamba Sabbath (pleasantest day of the week)
Persian Shambin Sabbath
Persian (Persia) Shambah Sabbath
Polish Sobota Sabbath
Portuguese (Portugal) Sabbado Sabbath
Prussian (Prussia) Sabatico Sabbath
Roman (Sapin, Catalonia) Dissapte Day Sabbath
Russian (Russia) Subbota Sabbath
Shona (Zimbabwe) Sabata Sabbath
Spanish (Spain) Sábado Sabbath
Tamashek (Atlas mountains, Africa) A-hal es-sabt the Sabbath
Turkish Yomessabt Day Sabbath
Wallachian (Roumania or Wallachia) Sambata Sabbath
Wolof (Senegambia, West Africa) Alere-Asser Last Day Sabbath
Miscellaneous Middle Ages Languages
Bagrimma (central Africa) Sibbedi Sabbath
Bornu (central Africa) Assebdu The Sabbath
Dayak (Borneo) Sabtu Sabbath
Georgian (Caucasus) Shabati Sabbath
Ingoush (Caucasus) Shatt Sabbath
Javanese (Java) Saptoe or saptu Sabbath
Logone (central Africa) Se-sibde The Sabbath
Maba (central Africa) Sab Sabbath
Makassar (s. Celebes & Salayer islands) Sattu Sabbath
Malagassy (Madagascar) Alsabotsy The Sabbath
Malayan (Malaya, Sumatra) Hari sabtu day Sabbath
Mandingo (west Africa, s. of Senegal) Sibiti Sabbath
Permian (Russian) Subota Sabbath
Suanian (Caucasus) Sammtyn Sabbath
Swahili (east equatorial Africa) As-sabt The Sabbath
Teda (central Africa) Essebdu The Sabbath
Votiak (Russian) Subbota Sabbath

These language tables leave no doubt that the Sabbath falls on the Seventh day of the week in every major language in the world. You will also note that this includes some of the oldest languages known to man. The Babylonian language for example was in use hundreds of years before Abraham founded the Hebrew race. The Seventh day in this Babylonian language was called “sa-ba-tu,” which means rest day or Sabbath and is one more indisputable proof that the Bible Sabbath was not and is not exclusively Jewish. Very few understand that the word Sabbath and the concept of resting from work on the seventh day of the week (Saturday) is common to most of the modern and ancient languages of the world. This evidence is completely independent of scripture and confirms the Biblical teaching that the Seventh-day Sabbath predates Judaism. The concept of a Holy Seventh-day Sabbath rest is practiced, acknowledged, understood and accepted by practically every culture today and can be traced all the way back to Babylon. When studying the many languages of mankind you will find two important facts:

1. There is not one single language which designates another day as the “day of rest.”
2. The last or seventh day of the week in most principal languages is designated as the “Sabbath.”

What day is the Sabbath - Page 2

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Scripture Verse

Exodus 20:8-11Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy. Six days you shall labour and do all your work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the LORD your God. On it you shall not do any work, neither you, nor your son or daughter, nor your manservant or maidservant, nor your animals, nor the stranger within your gates. 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.