The Sabbath is the Lord’s day, set apart each week for rest and worship. In Old Testament times, God’s covenant people observed the Sabbath on the seventh day of the week because God rested on the seventh day when He had created the earth. The Lord emphasized the importance of Sabbath observance in the Ten Commandments:
“Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy.
“Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work:
“But the seventh day is the sabbath of the Lord thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates:
“For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the Lord blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it” (Exodus 20:8–11).
In the latter days, the Lord has commanded us to continue observing the Sabbath. He has promised that if we obey this commandment, we will receive “the fulness of the earth” (see D&C 59:16–20).
Because the Sabbath is a holy day, it should be reserved for worthy and holy activities. Abstaining from work and recreation is not enough. In fact, if we merely lounge about doing nothing on the Sabbath, we fail to keep the day holy. In a revelation given to Joseph Smith in 1831, the Lord commanded: “That thou mayest more fully keep thyself unspotted from the world, thou shalt go to the house of prayer and offer up thy sacraments upon my holy day; for verily this is a day appointed unto you to rest from your labors, and to pay thy devotions unto the Most High” (D&C 59:9–10). In harmony with this revelation, we attend sacrament meeting each week. Other Sabbath-day activities may include praying, meditating, studying the scriptures and the teachings of latter-day prophets, writing letters to family members and friends, reading wholesome material, visiting the sick and distressed, and attending other Church meetings.