Among Reformed Baptists, the London Baptist Confession is held in high esteem. Some Southern Baptist Churches have adopted it as their own confession, often along with the Baptist Faith and Message. These two documents are not contradictory, indeed they are largely complimentary with one another. The LBC is arguably the better document of the two, and it is certainly more precise and detailed in content. You may peruse the document itself in its entirety at the Reformed Reader, the section specifically dedicated to the worship and the Sabbath is Chapter 22.
We will begin by examining the seventh article in Chapter 22. It states:
As it is the law of nature, that in general a proportion of time, by God's appointment, be set apart for the worship of God, so by his Word, in a positive moral, and perpetual commandment, binding all men, in all ages, he hath particularly appointed one day in seven for a Sabbath to be kept holy unto him, which from the beginning of the world to the resurrection of Christ was the last day of the week, and from the resurrection of Christ was changed into the first day of the week, which is called the Lord's day: and is to be continued to the end of the world as the Christian Sabbath, the observation of the last day of the week being abolished.
( Exodus 20:8; 1 Corinthians 16:1, 2; Acts 20:7; Revelation 1:10 )
If I understand the wording of this document correctly, and you'd have to be extremely dense not to, keeping the Christian Sabbath is not optional. It is a moral, perpetual, and binding commandment to all ages. In other words, Sabbath keeping was not abolished by the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. It is not a matter of legalism to the framers of the LBC, it is a matter of morality. To not keep the Sabbath ranks with sexual immorality and idol worship.
The first Scriptural evidence given for this position is Exodus 20:8. Let's quote it for safety purposes:
Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy.
According to verses 9-10, Israel was to labor for six days, and on the seventh they were to rest. No problem. We knew that already.
Let's move on to 1 Corinthians 16:1-2 and see what light it will shed on the subject:
Now concerning the collection for the saints, as I have given orders to the churches of Galatia, so you must do also: On the first day of the week, let each one of you lay something aside, storing up as he may prosper, that there be no collections when I come.
Paul, being an apostle, bound the Churches by command to take a collection on the first day of the week. That's Sunday for you who need me to be the Master of the Obvious. Was this a one-time thing? Why did Paul pick Sunday? Why didn't he simply command it to be done on the regular 7th day Sabbath? Let's move forward with the proof texts.
Now on the first day of the week, when the disciples came together to break bread, Paul, ready to depart the next day, spoke to them and continued his message until midnight (Acts 20:7).
We see here that it was the custom of the disciples to meet, not on the 7th day, but on the 1st day of the week. Did this day just so happen to fall on Sunday by coincidence? Historically speaking, there is no doubt that the Christian church purposefully met on Sundays. It is improbable that they simply picked Sunday willy-nilly to meet on instead of Saturday. (Check out Pastor Steve Weaver's blog for a more detailed historical examination.)The most common explanation for this is that Sunday was the day of worship because Jesus rose from the grave on a Sunday, thus marking a new era. Whether or not they enjoyed Sunday as a new Sabbath remains to be seen!
I was in the Spirit on the Lord's Day, and I heard behind me a loud voice, as of a trumpet (Revelation 1:10).
Here, we have the first and only use of the term "Lord's Day." This, apparently, refers to the first day of the week. This has been the almost universal understanding of the term throughout the history of the Church. If indeed the "Lord's Day" refers to Sunday, and if indeed the other passages refer to the practice of gathering for Sunday to worship and bring offerings, then do we have enough evidence here to indicate that Sunday is the Christian Sabbath?
In this article, I have simply put the Scriptures before you that the LBC 1689 uses. We've only gotten our feet wet on the theological, historical, and linguistic issues. But I believe that their is sufficient evidence here to give us pause to consider our way, and not to dismiss the doctrine of the 1689 confession out of hand. What say you?