Should Christians Worship on Fridays or Sundays in the Middle East?!

  There are different church services available in Oman as well as in other Gulf countries such as Bahrain, the UAE and Kuwait.  In the PCO (Protestant Church in Oman), we have services at 7:30pm on Sunday in Ruwi, 9am service on Friday in Ghala’s Bosch Hall and an 11am service also on Friday in the Good Shepherd Hall in Ghala and an Arabic service available as well.  There is also a Tuesday night Bible study at 7pm in Ghala.  Some Christians attend service when they do out of convenience.  For example, since Thursday and Friday is the weekend here in Oman, Friday is, in a way, kind of like the western Sunday.  As a result, the biggest service is 9am in Ghala on Friday which has a livelier worship band and is geared more towards families as they have great kids programs.  11am service might be better for those who like to sleep in (haha) and is more traditional with hymns being the only songs sung out of the old hymnbook.  In addition, it is the only service of the PCO that has communion EVERY week.  Some Christians avoid services on Fridays and firmly believe that we MUST go to church on Sunday as that is the day that the Lord Jesus was resurrected.   

So, which day is best (biblically sound) for the Christian to attend?  Should all Christians attend on Sunday?  Should all Christians attend on Saturday (as some cults teach) as that was the original “sabbath” or day of rest?  Is it okay to worship on Fridays?  As in all cases, I think it’s best to see what the Bible has to say.

“And upon the first day of the week, when the disciples came together to break bread, Paul preached unto them, ready to depart the next day; and continued his message until midnight.” (Acts 20:7) 

“This passage provides the clearest evidence that the New Testament churches assembled on the first day of the week.  In fact, this was the primary service of the week.  Paul stayed in Troas one full week.  Then on Sunday, when the disciples came together to break bread, Paul preached unto them.  He consisently preached on the Jewish Sabbath, because that was the day the Jews would gather in the synagogue.  On Sunday it would be virtually empty.  But when Paul gathered for fellowship with the church it was on Sunday, as revealed here and in 1 Corinthians 16:2(“Upon the first day of the week let every one of you lay something aside, as God hath prospered him, that there be no collections when I come.”) Sunday was the day they received offerings; Sunday was the day they observed the Lord’s Supper.  The teachings of the apostles agree with this practice.  Only once do the apostles mention the Sabbath in teaching its proper place (Colossians 2:16).  “Let no man therefore judge you in food, or in drink, or in respect to a feast day, or of the new moon, or of the sabbath days”.  Several other times reference is clearly made to the Sabbath.  “One man esteemeth one day above another: another esteemeth every day alike.  Let every man be fully convinced in his own mind.  He that regardeth the day, regardeth it unto the Lord; and he that regardeth not the day, to the Lord he doth not regard it.” (Romans 14:5-6) “But now, after that ye have known God, or rather are known of God, how turn ye again to the weak and beggarly elements, whereunto ye desire again to be in bondage?  Ye observe days, and months, and seasons, and years.  I am afraid for you, lest I have labored for you in vain.” (Galatians 4:9-11)  In each of these passages Christians are urged not to allow the Sabbath to become an issue.  Normally, Christians observe Sunday because of Christ’s resurrection on Sunday and because of the early church’s example.  Neither Saturday nor Sunday, is, however, the Christian’s Sabbath.  We worship a Person, not a day.  Every day is to be holy to the Lord.  Remember the weekday to keep it holy.”  (From the King James Study Bible) Word! Well said! Hear, hear! Amen!  The Muscat Singers, under the direction of Gwen Wilson, at the 11am service at Ghala’s Good Shepherd Hall quite a few weeks back.  Members of the Filipino community, under the leadership of Jess Manglicmot, singing “God Will Make a Way” in both English and Tagalog during our Pentecost combined service several weeks ago.

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2 responses to “Should Christians Worship on Fridays or Sundays in the Middle East?!

  1. The most important question for me would be “Should Christians worship in the Middle East?” It’s the worship of God that all humanity should at some stage bend towards, whether on the first, second or whatever day of the week – for God does not change with days, no is He more attentive or receptive on particular days. That we can gather and worship Him fulfills our duty and love for the One who is worthy of all praise at all times; and we should even be more jubilant that we have a day that we can freely call upon his Name and usher our praises into His throne, without having to rush upon the call of employers.

  2. I do not understand why you think the most important question is “should Christians worship in the Middle East?” Are you implying that there shouldn’t be Christians in the Middle East? Why on earth shouldn’t christians worship in the Middle East?! Of course we should worship God wherever we may find ourselves. The Samaritan woman had this false sense of worshipping God is specific places only and John 4 records that important conversation with Christ. “Our ancestors worshiped on this mountain, but you Jews claim that the place where we must worship is in Jerusalem.” (she said). 21 “Woman,” Jesus replied, “believe me, a time is coming when you will worship the Father neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem. 22 You Samaritans worship what you do not know; we worship what we do know, for salvation is from the Jews. 23 Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in the Spirit and in truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. 24 God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in the Spirit and in truth.” 25 The woman said, “I know that Messiah” (called Christ) “is coming. When he comes, he will explain everything to us.”

    26 Then Jesus declared, “I, the one speaking to you—I am he.”

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