The Sabbath and Friday-Focused Cultures
Before I ask this question, let me say that I do hold to teaching of the Confession that the first day of the week is the Christian Sabbath. Nevertheless, due to where I will be living in the future, I have some very specific questions about keeping the Sabbath in cultures where the first day of the week is not the standard day off of work. So please don't just tell me to read the Confession, but if you have something to contribute regarding how this all plays out, please offer your thoughts as I'm really wrestling through it.
(1) I will be living before long (PM me if you want details) in a country where Friday is the standard day off of work. Sunday is a normal work day like any other. Further, there will be very few believers where I'm going. Accordingly, one of the difficulties I'm facing is how to hold to Sabbatarian convictions in such an environment. How would you approach such an issue? Friday is the day for religious observances, so it provides a natural way to take a Sabbath (unlike those who say, 'Any day can be the Sabbath?' and then never observe one at all), but it does not seem to fit the Confession to do so.
(2) How do you think the teaching of Romans 14 fits into this question (observing Friday as the Sabbath)? Knox Chamblin, in Paul and the Self, argues that Romans 14 teaches that this would be possible. E.g., see the quote below:
How would you respond to this view of Romans 14 if you find it inaccurate?
One can esteem all days alike (as just indicated) and at the same time recognize that human beings as creatures urgently need the Sabbath rest. At the same time, the Sabbath rest must not be riveted to a particular day, as though the efficacy of the rest depended on its being observed on this day instead of that. But what of persons who stand, as I do, within a tradition that identifies the first day of the week as the Christian Sabbath, the day now appointed for rest as surely as the seventh used to be? Such persons may freely relinquish the freedom, or the right, to choose another day. Their conscience has not been violated; their understanding of Paul remains unchanged. Yet it is to Christ alone that they are bound, not to a view of the fourth commandment; and they make their choice, both because it is convenient and also in genuine support of believers who are otherwise persuaded. (Paul and the Self, 150-151)
Thank you. These are not hypotheticals, but something I will be facing faster than my mind and heart are dealing with the question.