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    March 17, 1887

    “The Law and the Gospel” The Signs of the Times, 13, 11.

    E. J. Waggoner

    The law of the Father and the gospel of the Son are not antagonistic elements. Instead of the former being superseded by the latter, it is honored, magnified, and established by it. The plan of salvation was devised not to abolish the law, but that God “might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus.”SITI March 17, 1887, page 163.1

    We know that man is a moral being, under the domain of law and directly responsible to his Creator for all his acts. John tells us that in prophetic vision he “saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened; and another book was opened, which is the book of life; and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.” And again, we are told that “every one of us shall give account of himself to God.” Nor are we left it in any uncertainty as to the standard of the judgment to which we are all hastening; the wise man says: “Fear God, and keep his commandments; for this is the whole duty of man. For God shall bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing, whether it be good, or whether it be evil.” While the master himself said to the young man, “If thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments.”SITI March 17, 1887, page 163.2

    But “who then can be saved?” How can any escape death, the wages of sin, “for all have sinned”? And because of what the law says every mouth is stopped and all the world is guilty before God. The question is answered in those matchless words of our Saviour: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten son, that whosoever believe if in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” And with Paul every humble, trusting soul may exclaim, “I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord.” And this because there is “no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh but after the Spirit.” “For he [God] hath made him [Christ] to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.” 2 Corinthians 5:21. Or, as the apostle expresses it elsewhere, God sent his “Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin [margin, “by a sacrifice for sin”], condemned sin in the flesh; that the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.” And all this agrees perfectly with the words of our Saviour:-SITI March 17, 1887, page 163.3

    “Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets; I am not come to destroy, but to fulfill. For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled. Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of Heaven [Campbell’s translation, “of no esteem in the sight of Heaven”]; but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of Heaven.” Matthew 5:17-19.SITI March 17, 1887, page 163.4

    But let every soul that has named the name of Christ remember “that no flesh should glory in his [God] presence. But of them are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption; that, according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord.” “For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure.” 1 Corinthians 1:29-31; Philippians 2:13.SITI March 17, 1887, page 163.5

    “‘A Weighty and Timely Utterance.’ (Continued.)” The Signs of the Times, 13, 11.

    E. J. Waggoner



    Justin Martyr is next quoted as follows:-SITI March 17, 1887, page 166.1

    “On Sunday we all assemble in common, since that is the first day which God, and on the same day of our savior Jesus Christ rose from the dead.”SITI March 17, 1887, page 166.2

    This is an incorrect quotation, inasmuch as it makes Justin speak of the resurrection of Christ as a reason for worshiping on Sunday, when he made no mention of that event. What he really says is this:-SITI March 17, 1887, page 166.3

    “And on the day called Sunday, all who live in cities or in the country gathered together to one place, and the memoirs of the apostles or the writings of the prophets are read, as long as time permits.”-First Apology of Justin, chap. 6.SITI March 17, 1887, page 166.4

    This is a minor difference, but it serves to show how even the trashy stuff which the so-called Fathers wrote is garbled in order to bolster up the Sunday. But it may be said that we have here evidence in favor of Sunday observance, since Justin really says that they met on the day called Sunday. To that we reply that we shall not attempt to deny that Sunday was observed to some extent at quite an early period, but the fact that a thing was done, is no evidence it ought to have been done. Within three hundred years after the crucifixion of Christ we can find every abomination of the Papacy in the Christian church. In the preface to the “Ancient Church” Dr. Killen says:-SITI March 17, 1887, page 166.5

    “In the interval between the days of the apostles and the conversion of Constantine, the Christian commonwealth changed its aspect. The bishop of Rome-a personage unknown to the writers of the New Testament-meanwhile rose into prominence, and at length took precedence of all other churchmen. Rites and ceremonies, of which neither Paul nor Peter ever heard, crept silently into use, and then claimed the rank of divine institutions. Officers for whom the primitive disciples could have found no place, and titles, which to them would have been altogether unintelligible, began to challenge attention, and to be named apostolic.”SITI March 17, 1887, page 166.6

    Justin then was a Greek who lived in the second century; and concerning the condition of the church in that century has the following:-SITI March 17, 1887, page 166.7

    “Among the Greeks and the people of the East nothing was held more sacred than what were called the Mysteries. This circumstance led the Christians, in order to impart dignity to their religion, to say that they also had similar mysteries, or certain holy rites concealed from vulgar; and they not only applied the terms used in the pagan mysteries to the Christian institutions, particularly baptism and the Lord’s Supper; but they gradually introduced also the rites which were designated by those terms. This practice originated in the eastern provinces; and thence, after the times of Adrian (who first introduced the Grecian mysteries among the Latins), it spread among the Christians of the West. A large part, therefore, of the Christian observances and institutions, even in this century, had the aspect of the pagan mysteries.”-Ecclesiastical History, book 1, chap. 4, sections 1-5.SITI March 17, 1887, page 166.8

    If antiquity were to be allowed as evidence of the correctness of the practice, nearly all error would be classed as truth. The question with the us is not what people have done, but what ought they to have done, and the Bible alone can answer the question satisfactorily.SITI March 17, 1887, page 166.9

    The next “evidence” that is brought to the support of Sunday is the following:-SITI March 17, 1887, page 166.10

    “Theophilus, bishop of Antioch, about the year 162 says: ‘Both custom and reason challenge from us that we should honor the Lord’s day, seeing on that day it was that our Lord Jesus completed his resurrection from the dead.’ (Edwards’s Manual, p. 114.)”SITI March 17, 1887, page 166.11

    It may strike the reader as strange that these testimonies are quoted from Dr. Edwards’s “Sabbath Manual,” and not directly from the Fathers themselves. But this means the responsibility for any wrong quotation is all thrown upon Dr. Edwards’s. On this quotation from Theophilus, all that we have to say is that it is entirely manufactured. Not a line of it appears in his writings. He does not use the term “Lord’s day,” and nowhere even mentions the first day of the week. It is evident that Dr. Edwards, who is primarily responsible for this forged testimony, was no novice in the use of the Fathers, and did not stand in need of any instructions from the Rev. Philetus Dobbs. We will say this, however, for the forged testimony from Theophilus, that it is just as good evidence for Sunday-keeping as any that can be found in any of the Fathers; and it is entitled to just as much weight as though Theophilus had actually written it. But the advocates of Sunday have the lack of testimony in its support, and the next quotation given is “equally conclusive” with that from Theophilus. Dr. Bailey says:-SITI March 17, 1887, page 166.12

    “Irenaeus, bishop of Lyons in France, and the disciple of Polycarp, in the year 167, says that the Lord’s day was the Christian Sabbath. ‘On the Lord’s day everyone of us Christians keep the Sabbath, meditating on the law and rejoicing in the works of God.’ (Edwards’s Manual, p. 114.)”SITI March 17, 1887, page 166.13

    Of the lesson we have simply to say that the term “Lord’s day” nowhere occurs in the writings of Irenaeus. Our readers, though, have doubtless found out by this time that even if one of the Fathers did not happen to speak about a certain thing, it does not in the least invalidate the testimony quoted from him in favor of it. If he had only realized what straits the advocates of Sunday would be in for argument in the ninteenth century, he might possibly have said what they want him to say, and so it is just the same as though he had said it. This seems to be the plan adopted by those who quote the Fathers.SITI March 17, 1887, page 166.14

    There is one little thing about the writings of Irenaeus which we never remember to have seen quoted, and while we are on this subject we will mention it here, that our readers may see the straightforwardness of the Fathers in general, and of Irenaeus in a particular area. In the introductory notice of the writings of Irenaeus, we find the following statement by the translators:-SITI March 17, 1887, page 166.15

    “The great works of Irenaeus, and now for the first time translated into English, is unfortunately no longer extant in the original. It has come down to us only in an ancient version, with the exception of the greater part of the first book, which has been preserved in the original Greek, through means of copious quotations made by Hippolytus and Epiphanius. The text both Latin and Greek, is often most uncertain. Only three MSS. of the work ‘Against Heresies’ are at present known to exist. Others, however, were used in the earliest printed editions put forth by Erasmus. And as these codices or more ancient than any available, it is greatly to be regretted that they have disappeared or perished. One of our difficulties throughout, has been to fix the readings we should adopt, especially in the first book. Varieties of reading, actual or conjectural, have been noted only when some point of special importance seemed to be involved.SITI March 17, 1887, page 166.16

    “After the text has been settled, according to the best judgment which can be formed, the work of translation remains; and that is, in this case, a matter of no small difficulty. Irenaeus even in the original Greek, is often a very obscure writer. At times he expresses himself with remarkable clearness and terseness; but, upon the whole, his style is very involved and prolix. And the Latin version adds to these difficulties of the original, by being itself of the most barbarous character. In fact, it is often necessary to make a conjectural re-translation of it into Greek, in order to obtain some inkling of what the author wrote. Dodwell supposes this Latin version to have been made about the end of the fourth century; but as Tertullian seems to have used it, we must rather place it in the beginning of the third. Its author is unknown, but he was certainly little qualified for this task. We have endeavored to give as close and accurate a translation of the work as possible, but there are not a few passages in which a guess can only be made as to the probable meaning.”SITI March 17, 1887, page 166.17

    This assurance must be a great comfort to those who dote on Irenaeus. It must be a great satisfaction to his admirers to know that they have his exact language just as clearly as can be guessed at by people living 1,000 years after he died. The plan adopted by the translators is very much like trying to arrive at an exact amount of a certain sum of money by guessing at half of this and multiplying that by two. And this is a specimen of the volume of all the writings of the so-called Fathers. Many of them are wholly forged, and the others have been altered and interpolated and garbled so that the ones who wrote them would not recognize them, if they were alive. As Dr. Mosheim says, it is of no importance that much of the writings of the Fathers has been lost, since they are utterly unreliable. We do not know that they are ever quoted except in support of a cause which cannot be sustained by the Bible. They are simply blind leaders of the blind. To go to them for light on the Bible is like taking the shades of midnight to illuminate the face of the sun.SITI March 17, 1887, page 166.18

    We have followed Dr. Bailey thus far in his proofs from the Fathers, not because we thought it necessary to try to refute the so-called argument, but that our readers might see clearly the broken reed upon which the Sunday institution rests for support. We think enough has been said to demonstrate this point, and we will not follow it any further.SITI March 17, 1887, page 166.19

    Dr. Bailey says: “How silly and shallow is a falsehood that Constantine changed the Sabbath from the seventh to the first day of the week. “So we say; and we have never heard of a Sabbath keeper who was foolish enough to make such a claim. There was no man who could change the Sabbath from the seventh to the first day of the week as Doctor Scott says, the truth is that the change was made gradually. All deviations from the right are made in the same way. But it is true that the change from the seventh to the first day was made by “the man of sin,” “that Wicked,” the mystery of whose iniquity was working even in the days of the apostles; and it was just such perversions of truth as this that made the Papacy the “mystery of iniquity,” “the abomination of desolation.”SITI March 17, 1887, page 166.20

    But while Constantine did not change the Sabbath, he did have a hand in perpetuating the wicked change that had already been made, and in establishing the Papacy on a firm basis. “Chambers’s Encyclopedia,’ speaking of the custom of the early church, says:-SITI March 17, 1887, page 166.21

    “Whatever may have been the opinion or practice of the early Christians in regard to the cessation from labor on the Sunday, unquestionably the first law, either ecclesiastical or civil, by which the sabbatical observance of that date is known to have been ordained, is the edict of Constantine 321 A.D.”SITI March 17, 1887, page 166.22

    We have seen this statement denied by those who asserted that Christ and the apostles changed the Sabbath, but we have never known anyone to quote a commandment for Sunday-keeping earlier than that of Constantine. It is very easy to say that Christ changed the Sabbath, but it is impossible to find a commandment to that effect. W.SITI March 17, 1887, page 166.23

    (Concluded next week.)

    “Why We Keep the Sabbath” The Signs of the Times, 13, 11.

    E. J. Waggoner

    In reply to a request in the SIGNS for someone to send one direct Bible text showing Sunday to be the Sabbath, the gentleman writes: “I do not propose to discuss the subject, for I am not sufficiently versed; but, Yankee-like, I can turn the question by asking you the same in regard to Saturday. Please give chapter and verse to sustain you in Sabbath or Saturday worship.”SITI March 17, 1887, page 166.24

    This we are very happy to do. “And God said all these words, saying.... Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days shalt thou labor, and do all the work; but this seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord thy God; in it thou shalt if not to do any work, thou, nor thy daughter, the, manservant nor maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor a stranger that is within guide takes; for in his six days of the Lord made heaven and earth and the sea at all that in them is, and rested the seventh day; where for the Lord blessed the Sabbath-day, and hallowed it.” Exodus 20:1, 8-11. This is correct, simple, easily understood, and comes direct from Heaven. It is the foundation of all Sabbath observance. It is sufficient of itself. And the Bible contains abundance of corroborative testimony, but not a word for first-day observance.SITI March 17, 1887, page 166.25

    “‘Saturday or Sunday’” The Signs of the Times, 13, 11.

    E. J. Waggoner

    This is the title of a fourth-page leaflet having a subtitle, “A letter to Seventh-day believers.” It was written by Mrs. J. C. Bateham, “Supt. Sabbath Observance Department, N. W. C. T.” We give it a place in the SIGNS in compliance with the request which accompanied it, to “please publish.” The letter is as follows:-SITI March 17, 1887, page 167.1

    DEAR CHRISTIAN FRIENDS: Many of you I know and love as conscientious Christian workers in our Women’s Christian Temperance Union and elsewhere, and greatly respect your self sacrificing devotion to principle. I desire your earnest cooperation in efforts to save a weekly Sabbath for our beloved country, that without it must sink to heathenism and ruin. One your own writers, N. V. Hull says: “By comment consent, the weekly Sabbath is a necessary institution. It is in the interest of both civilization and religion, and the world without it would be in darkness and confusion. The loss of a Sabbath would be irreparable.” Yet to-day, so strong is the tide of Sabbath desecration, so determined, and successful the opposition from the liquor traffic and other Sabbath foes, that apparently only the united and earnest efforts of Christians can preserve it.SITI March 17, 1887, page 167.2

    Surely no Christian should be found on the side of its enemies. Would that we might see eye to eye on the question that divides us, for it is a simple one: Does the Sabbath day of the Bible necessarily fall on Saturday? We think not.SITI March 17, 1887, page 167.3

    In Eden, God set apart and blessed a day, not the seventh of time, but the seventh day, as the Holy Sabbath, we claim that no man can possibly tell on what day of the week that first Sabbath fell, since their names are not revealed. God’s days were doubtless long ages-aeons, during six of which the creation was finished, so that all earthly time is a part of Gods Sabbath in which he rests from creative work. The Sabbath was instituted after Eve was created. Time is reckoned from Adam’s first day, but how much of that sixth aeon Adam had lived before Eve’s creation, there is no record. His creation was apparently toward the close, yet he lived single long enough to make the acquaintance of every living thing and give to each a name expressive of its peculiarities, and to find that not one was a suitable companion. Then he slept and Eve was created.SITI March 17, 1887, page 167.4

    The next day was the Sabbath. It was Eve’s first day, not seventh. Who shall tell how many days or weeks of Adam had lived? If the particular day on which that Sabbath fell was important, God surely would have made it plain. The fair inference is that the particular day is immaterial. God worked in six of his days, then rested one. Man too was to labor six days then rest one. First-day Christians as literally follow Genesis as do seventh-day believers, not accepting the hour of beginning the day, for our revised version says simply of each day, “there was evening and there was morning.” These days being aeons the phrase is figurative. A day’s work is ended, a rest as of night follows. Then with the light a new day begins. Nature’s division of time was followed. The phrase is not repeated for the seventh day, since the morning of verse 21, 31 is the dawning of the seventh, showing this sixth complete.SITI March 17, 1887, page 167.5

    Later in Israelitish history, the observance of Sabbath was apparently and of necessity lost during the 400 years of bitter Egyptian bondage among a people who measure time by tens instead of sevens; and Moses apparently re-instituted it by God’s commandment, at the exodus on the day that just one week previous had been used for a long march by God’s command. Exodus 14. Perhaps God designed thus to show that the particular day was immaterial.SITI March 17, 1887, page 168.1

    The fourth commandment at Sinai again enjoins the holy keeping of the seventh day as Sabbath, without telling on what day by name that seventh day fell, and as it had been changed once and may have been changed, or lost, at other times before or after the flood, we can only infer that God commands a day-a whole day-kept holy, and this day itself follows six of work, and thus be the seventh day. The Jewish nation as such had its beginning at the exodus, when God re-instituted the Sabbath and on a new day partly in memory of their birth as a nation. Deuteronomy 5:15.SITI March 17, 1887, page 168.2

    The Eden Sabbath was for all mankind to the end of time. Day not known. The Jews since the exodus, so far as we know, have observed Saturday as their Sabbath. Christian nations observe Sunday. When was the change made? No one knows positively, nor is it at all important, as we believe. Had it been of consequence we should have definite information. Proof is abundant that Sunday was observed long before Emperor Constantine, and before the papal church had a beginning, with strong evidence that during the first few centuries both Saturday and Sunday were observed by believers, presumptive evidence that the change must have required high if not the highest authority, and to my mind satisfactory proof of apostolic usage.SITI March 17, 1887, page 168.3

    Again, we know it is a geographical impossibility for persons living in different parts of the world to observe the same hour as a holy time. There is a gradual change extending over twenty-four hours, till on the adjacent Alaskan islands the Sunday of one is a Saturday of the other. Which, if either, is the Sabbath of Eden or the exodus, who can tell? More than nine-tenths of the Christian world insist that it is contrary to the spirit of Christianity to be thus bound by the letter (the Jewish usage of the seventh day) when every requirement of the Eden Sabbath for the fourth commandment is as fully met by those who keep their seventh day on Sunday as Saturday.SITI March 17, 1887, page 168.4

    The tendency of all Christian growth is toward dropping nonessential and toward fellowship. The essentials to salvation are the atonement, repentance, and faith. The form of baptism or church and government, or the day we celebrate, is certainly not essential to salvation. Success in saving souls and doing Christ’s work, shows God’s hearty co-operation with all. Let us be like-minded. “That they all may be one,” is our Saviour’s prayer, if not all Baptists or Methodists, but one in love and devotion. To this end, agreement in essentials-charity in non-essentials. Is there hope that Saturday will be generally adopted as the Christian Sabbath? Apparently not. Then if the day is a nonessential, but the Sabbath of vast importance, there should be hearty co-operation to secure it.SITI March 17, 1887, page 168.5

    But you say, How can we support Sabbath laws that oppress us? Exceptions should be made for certain classes. It should be sufficient defense to a prosecution for servile labor the first day of the week, that “the defendant uniformly keeps another day of the week as a holy time and does not labor upon that day, and that the labor complained of was done in such manner as not to interrupt or disturb other people in observing the first day of the week as a day of rest and religious worship. “With this exception for our present laws are, if well enforced, usually satisfactory. In some States they need revision.SITI March 17, 1887, page 168.6

    Law cannot control of religious belief or give us a religious Sabbath. It should give us a civil Sabbath, that is, a non-legal one, wherein governmental and public business shall be suspended, and all labor and recreation so far suspended as not to interfere with the enjoyment of a religious Sabbath off by those who wish it. This is all we ask and less would not protect the Sabbath. Such a law would be burdensome to those who have already abstained from labor one day, but could not violate their conscience, and with the above proviso the burden would be light as possible.SITI March 17, 1887, page 168.7

    This burden we ask you to bear from love to God and religion and from motives of patriotism. The irreligious with false notions of personal liberty, object to having their rights infringed upon on any day of the week, but we answer, law must consult the greatest good of the greatest number, and the same rule applies to us all. If we cannot see alike, let us credit each other with candor, honesty, and a desire to obey the Lord of the Sabbath, and may none of us be found shrinking from any self-denial by which we may help preserve the Sabbath, and thus help save a world that Christ loved even unto death.SITI March 17, 1887, page 168.8


    The sum of the above letter is this: Nine-tenths of the Christian world insists that it is wrong to rest upon the seventh day of the week, therefore those who believe that it is right so to do ought to throw aside their conscientious convictions and join with the nine-tenths of the Christian world in forcing the non-Christian world to adopt a certain form of religion. The appeal for help from the seventh-day observers is based on the attempted argument to show that Saturday is not the Sabbath, and therefore we will briefly notice the positions taken by Mrs. Bateham.SITI March 17, 1887, page 168.9

    1. The claim is made that in Eden God set apart and blessed the Sabbath day, which was no day in particular. Says the writer:-SITI March 17, 1887, page 168.10

    “God’s days were doubtless long ages, during six of which the creation was finished, so that all earthly time is a part of God’s Sabbath, in which he rests from creative work.”SITI March 17, 1887, page 168.11

    The word “doubtless” means, “without doubt or question; unquestionable.” A thing that is so well established that there is no chance for question in regard to it, must be able to present a long array of positive proof. We look around for the proof that the days of creation were long ages, but we find none at all. All that we have ever heard offered is the vain imaginations of skeptical devotees of science falsely so-called, who ignore the agency of an almighty God in creation, and assert that it is impossible that the world should have been created in six literal days. The great body of professed Christians, fearing lest they should be thought ignorant of the “latest deductions of modern science,” have hastened to accept this baseless theory of infidel geologists and evolutionists, forgetting that by so doing they were either limiting the power of God, or else ignoring him as Creator. The idea that the world was formed during long ages of time, is a modern device gotten up expressly for the purpose of avoiding the necessity of admitting the power of God. To be sure, some who hold to this theory admit that God had something to do with creation, that is, that he started it, and that after he had brought protoplasm into existence, the rest of the work did itself. But the logical result of the whole theory is to deny that God had anything to do with the creation of the world.SITI March 17, 1887, page 168.12

    One thing is certain, and that is, that it is no greater tax of faith to believe that God created the world in six literal days, than to suppose that he took six thousand or six million years. The Bible says that in six days God created the heaven and the earth, and we believe it. The first chapter of Genesis informs us plainly what kind of days these days were. They were days composed of an evening and a morning, that is, a dark part and a light part. This succession of light and darkness is caused only by the revolution of the earth on its axis. Those who hold to the aeon theory, would confer a favor by telling us what there is besides the revolution of the earth on its axis which causes the succession of light and darkness on the earth, and also how much of each long period was dark and how much was light. Moreover, those days were such days as the sun and moon were made to rule over. See Genesis 1:14-19. Will Mrs. Bateham kindly inform us whether the sun and moon here referred to are the same bodies with which we are so familiar? And if they are, how does it happen that now they rule over days of just twenty-four hours’ length, instead of long periods of time?SITI March 17, 1887, page 168.13

    We are told that “all earthly time is a part of God’s Sabbath in which he rests from creative work? That is to say, that the present time is God’s Sabbath-day. Let us see how well this agrees with the Scripture. In Genesis 2:2, 3 we read that God rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had made, and that God blessed the seventh day and sanctified it, “because that in it he had rested from all his work which God created and made.” This brings to view a Sabbath rest completed before the blessing was pronounced upon it. God blessed the seventh day because that in it he had rested. This simple statement of the Bible brushes away all the speculations of men, as an elephant would brush away a cobweb from his path. When the Bible says that God’s rest upon the seventh day was in the past, and that he blessed it and sanctified it because he had rested, we care nothing for the human conjecture that God’s Sabbath-day is all earthly time.SITI March 17, 1887, page 168.14

    Once more, the fourth commandment refers to the work of creation as recorded in the first chapter of Genesis, and repeats the statements found in Genesis 2:2, 3. There we learn that we are commanded to rest upon the seventh day because God did so. To sanctify means “to appoint,” as in Joel 1:14. And thus we understand the fourth commandment and Genesis 2:3 to read that God blessed the seventh day and appointed it for man’s observance, because that in it he had rested from all his work. And this allows no other conclusion but that the seventh day which man is commanded to observe, is of the same length as that upon which God rested.SITI March 17, 1887, page 168.15

    It seems that Mrs. Bateham is a little confused in her own mind as to this matter, for in the same paragraph in which she says that all earthly time is a part of God’s Sabbath, she also says, “We claim that no man can possibly tell on what day of the week “the whole period of earthly time” falls. The less cannot include the greater; and if “the whole period of earthly time” should fall on one day of the week, it would crush it to almost as attenuated proportions as Mrs. Bateham’s Sabbath argument. She says also that time is reckoned from Adam’s first day, but of how much of that sixth aeon Adam had lived before Eve’s creation, there is no record. Then she says: “The next day was the Sabbath; it was Eve’s first day, not seventh day.” She has already told us that that Sabbath-day is all earthly time, yet she says, “If the particular day upon which that Sabbath fell is important, God would surely have made it plain.” So we have two views offered us: One is that Adam and Eve died sometime in that seventh day, and that Adam did not live 930 years, but only a part of two days; also that Eve was created and died within the compass of that seventh day, but her last day. And then coming down to the literal reckoning of time, we are told that the seventh day was Eve’s first day. Thus it is implied that each individual must begin to reckon time for the observance of the Sabbath from the day following his birth. And yet we are requested to join in a movement compelling all people to rest on Sunday, because it is claimed that that is the true Sabbath day. Does Mrs. Bateham believe that everyone was born on Saturday?SITI March 17, 1887, page 168.16


    2. Then we are told that the observance of the Sabbath was of necessity lost during the Egyptian bondage, because the Egyptians measured their time by tens instead of by sevens. That is as much as to say that if nine-tenths of the people should reckon their time by tens it would be impossible for the other tenth to reckon by sevens. There is not the slightest evidence that the Sabbath was ever lost. It is very probable, however, that the Jews were compelled to labor on the Sabbath during a part, at least, of their Egyptian bondage; but God delivered them from that bondage in order that they might keep his Sabbath; and even allowing that they had lost all knowledge of the day, they certainly had full knowledge of it after God made it known to them in the wilderness. Moses did not re-enact the Sabbath, but he himself said, “See, for that the Lord hath given you the Sabbath.” Exodus 16:29. Mrs. Bateham says that “Moses apparently re-instituted it by God’s command, at the exodus on the day that just one week previous had been used for a long march by God’s command. Exodus 14.” It is quite evident to our mind that Mrs. Bateham has not studied the Sabbath question very extensively; for Exodus 14 says nothing about any long march made by the Israelites, except their passage of the Red Sea, which was made in the night, and it says nothing about the Sabbath; neither does that chapter nor any other say anything about the Sabbath being re-instituted by Moses. With these three exceptions, her statement is correct.SITI March 17, 1887, page 168.17

    Mrs. Bateham says that although the fourth commandment enjoins the keeping of the seventh day as the Sabbath, we cannot tell when it comes, because that day is not mentioned by name; and that “it had been changed once, and must have been changed or lost at other times before or after the flood;” and that consequently “we can only infer,” etc. What a delightfully indefinite foundation she has laid upon which to build and enforce the observance of a definite Sunday. But the Sabbath of the fourth commandment is the same as that of creation; so it was not changed, and although the Sabbath “might have been lost,” we know full well that it never was lost. It was kept constantly before the Israelites. Dire calamities were threatened them in case they should neglect its observance, and they were finally carried into captivity as a punishment for breaking the Sabbath. No one who believes in the justice of God can claim that he would punish his people for neglecting to observe a day which had been lost. After the Babylonian captivity the Jews never again relapsed into idolatry, and when Christ came he recognized the day which they were observing as the Sabbath. Mrs. Bateham herself allows that the Sabbath has not been lost since that time, because she makes a claim for uninterrupted Sunday observance from that time to this. And so we are sure that the seventh day which we observe is the day which God sanctified in Eden. Neither is it true that when the seventh day was set apart it was not named. God said, “The seventh day is the Sabbath.” That is the name,-“seventh day.”SITI March 17, 1887, page 169.1


    3. A feeble attempt is made to rescue Sunday from its papal parentage, the only argument against its being a Papal institution being that it was observed before the Emperor Constantine, and before the Catholic Church had a beginning. The same argument would prove that purgatory, prayers for the dead, and the sign of the cross, are not Papal institutions, because they were in the Christian church long before the time of Constantine. The fact that Sunday was observed from a comparatively early period, is no more evidence of divine authority for it, than is the fact that the sign of the cross was practiced by Christians in the second century, and that images were worshiped by Christians as early as the third century, any evidence that the apostles enjoined these ceremonies. It may not take much evidence to satisfy Mrs. Bateham, but if she wishes to convince seventh-day believers that Sunday is the Sabbath, she will have to give direct and positive statements of Scripture and not “presumptive evidence.” In a matter of this kind, we dare not presume.SITI March 17, 1887, page 169.2

    But we will leave the Sabbath argument and notice briefly the plea for a civil law. On this we will say first, that Sunday legislation has not the slightest connection with the temperance cause, even though the Women’s Christian Temperance Union has gone aside from its legitimate work to form a “Sabbath Observance Department.” A man may observe Sunday strictly and be an intemperate man still. He may be a strict temperance man and not regard any day as the Sabbath. Sunday legislation is in the interest of Sunday alone, and not of temperance. Those who observe the seventh day of the week are uniformly temperance people, but they do not believe that shutting up liquor saloons one day in the week would make any diminution of the cursed liquor traffic. Whenever it is proposed to submit to the people a constitutional amendment entirely prohibiting the sale of liquor, we promise that seventh-day observers will, to a man, work with them. We believe it is a crime to sell intoxicating liquors, and we would have it prohibited just as the promiscuous sale of other poisons is prohibited. And if it is only in the interests of temperance that Sunday legislation is asked for, then entire prohibition would secure that end.SITI March 17, 1887, page 169.3

    Second. It is idle to talk of the enforcement of Sunday as a civil institution. Sunday, although not a divine institution, is a religious institution. Its religious character was given to it by human authority; nevertheless, since it was appointed by “the church,” it is primarily and wholly a religious institution. Now under whatever pretext Sunday observance is enforced, it will be a fact that the State is enforcing the observance of a religious custom. The day cannot be separated from its churchly connection any more than a man can be separated from his character. So that to ask us to unite with them in securing laws in favor of Sunday, is simply asking us to help make laws to enforce the observance of Sunday as the Sabbath, when it has no shadow of claim to be regarded as the Sabbath.SITI March 17, 1887, page 169.4

    Third. Sunday legislation is not Sabbath legislation. We believe in working for the upbuilding of the Sabbath, but we cannot do it by working for Sunday. It does not matter if the majority do regard Sunday as the Sabbath, that does not make it the Sabbath. As well might the Chinese say to the few missionaries who are in that empire, “There is no hope that Jehovah will ever be generally accepted in this empire as God, then why not join with us in enforcing the worship of Joss, that thus we may work together in unison for the universal worship of deity?” The missionaries would just say, “There is no God but one, and it is not enough that people should worship some being, but if they would offer true worship they must recognize God who made the heaven and the earth.” They would readily recognize the fact that they would not be working in the interest of morality if they should attempt simply to secure the worship of some deity whom the majority would recognize, and not worship God. And so we say if we should engage with our sisters of the National Temperance Union in attempting to secure Sunday laws, we should not be working for the Sabbath.SITI March 17, 1887, page 169.5

    It is not enough to be told that we will be allowed to rest upon the seventh day; the question is, Would we be allowed our God-given privilege of laboring on the first day? The answer is that they would allow us to work a little. They purpose to make the burden upon us “as light as possible.” This in itself is an admission that they know that the enforcement of a Sunday law will work injustice to some. Now the law is not simply for the greatest good to the greatest number, but it is for equal justice to all. A law that works injustice to a single individual is an unjust law. A law that cannot be observed by every individual of the commonwealth, without someone being deprived of the privileges which God allows him to enjoy, has no business to be enacted.SITI March 17, 1887, page 169.6

    We are willing to give Mrs. Bateham and all her sisters of the Temperance Union, credit for honesty of purpose. We are willing to grant that as an association they would not desire to see a single individual oppressed for the observance of the seventh day. But no matter how kind their intentions may be, when their law is once enacted, their power over it ceases. Then the most bigoted and benighted individual in the country has the power to secure its enforcement, and while they would not wish to injure anyone who observes the Sabbath of the Lord, and might wish to enforce it simply upon non-professors, they could not hinder the bigot from securing its enforcement upon all, thus making it a means of wreaking his spite upon those who differ with him in religious belief.SITI March 17, 1887, page 169.7

    More than this, we would not work with them for the enactment of a Sunday law, if we could have a bond given by them collectively and individually, assuring us that they would not only grant us immunity from punishment for laboring on Sunday, but would secure us against all possible molestation. The reason why is this: Sunday is not the Sabbath; it has no claim to be so regarded; the seventh day (Saturday) is the Sabbath of the Lord; God has given a solemn and emphatic command that it should be kept; and we regard it as our imperative duty to enlighten people concerning the nature and obligation of the Sabbath. Now if we should join in a movement to secure the civil recognition of Sunday, we should be only nullifying our efforts to induce men to regard the seventh day and that only as the Sabbath. It would be an agreement on our part to assist in forging chains for others, providing we could be allowed to go free, and would be an announcement to the world that while we ourselves purposed to keep the seventh day, we did not regard it as necessary that other people should do so. But we do regard it as of vital importance to keep the seventh day according to the commandment of God, and although but few may listen to the teaching of the Bible on this subject, that does not absolve us from our duty to teach the truth, not alone by our words, but by our acts.SITI March 17, 1887, page 169.8

    We repeat: We are willing and even anxious to join in any purely temperance work, but even the so-called “Sabbath Observance Department of the National Women’s Christian Temperance Union” cannot make us believe that Sunday is the Sabbath, nor beguile us into working for a Sunday law under the guise of temperance. “Surely in vain the net is spread in the sight of any bird.” Proverbs 1:17. W.SITI March 17, 1887, page 169.9

    “Back Page” The Signs of the Times, 13, 11.

    E. J. Waggoner

    Our friends who are so zealous for the civil Sunday Law, tell us that the law ought to be enacted to meet the minds of the majority. How would they like it if they were in China, and a law should be enacted compelling all men to pay homage to heathen gods? They would speedily complain of the intolerance of laws of China. But if their theory of the rights of majorities is correct in one place it must be correct everywhere; and therefore heathen countries actually ought to compel all people within their jurisdiction to worship heathen gods! In Turkey a law enforcing Mohammedanism would meet the minds of the majority, and so, according to the reasoning of our Sunday friends, such laws ought, of right, to prevail in Turkey. But no; they would not suit them. They don’t believe in the rule of the majority unless they form part of the majority.SITI March 17, 1887, page 176.1

    At the last session of the California Methodist Episcopal Conference, the establishment of a “summer school of theology” was recommended, and a committee was appointed to carry out the design. This committee has received the co-operation of the University of the Pacific, and the school will be held from May 23 to June 2. In their prospectus a committee say that “the numerous theological vagaries afloat, and the misleading tendency of some literature on the subject, emanating from respectable sources, render this a favorable opportunity to restate and emphasize the great doctrines of our common Christianity, as held by the Methodist Episcopal Church. “We have seen of late so many vague and contradictory theories put forth by prominent members of the Methodist Church, that we shall be glad to have an authoritative declaration of just what that church does believe. And we are anxious to see how far they will indorse the position of Wesley and Fletcher on the law of God.SITI March 17, 1887, page 176.2

    Mrs. Bateham says that the day that is observed as the Sabbath is one of the non-essentials. If that is so, we should like to know why she and her brethren and sisters of the National Reform Party are making such frantic efforts to have the observance of Sunday established by law. If they believe the particular day to be observed is a matter of no importance, why don’t they let people do is they please in the matter. We can see in the movement nothing but a stubborn purpose on the part of the leaders to compel everybody to do just as they do. Because with them it is not a matter of conscience, but only of will, they are determined to believe that it is not a matter of conscience with others; or that if it is with any a matter of conscience, the conscience of the minority must submit to the will of the majority. Thus it was in the days of the Inquisition; and then, as now, all was done in the name of the Lord, and for his glory.SITI March 17, 1887, page 176.3

    Under the heading of “Satanic Omnipresence,” the Golden Gate attempts to ridicule our statement of the true theory of spiritual phenomena, by saying that there are thousands of persons being influenced at the same time, in different phases of mediumship, and that if there is a personal devil “he must be in thousands of places at once in the same instant of time; hence he must be omnipresent. There is no escaping this conclusion.”SITI March 17, 1887, page 176.4

    Those who are familiar with the Bible will readily see that there is no chance for any such conclusion. Says the Revelator, when speaking of the phenomenon of spiritualism: “They are the spirits of devils, working miracles.” Revelation 16:14. These devils are “the angels that sinned,” and that “kept not their first estate;” and their name is “legion,” for they “are many.” Mark 5:9-13.SITI March 17, 1887, page 176.5

    In our reference to Spiritualism we write with no great expectation that those who have been ensnared by it will see their error, although there is hope even that those who had been taken captive by the devil of and his will, may be recovered from his snare (2 Timothy 2:25, 26); but we write for the purpose of putting the unwary on their guard against this most novel and dangerous delusion of the arch-enemy of mankind. The Bible, and the Bible alone, forewarns and forearms us against it.SITI March 17, 1887, page 176.6

    “A Seasonable Warning” The Signs of the Times, 13, 11.

    E. J. Waggoner

    “As a madman who castesth firebrands, arrows, and death, so is the man that deceiveth his neighbor, and saith, Am not I in sport?” Proverbs 26:18, 19. This applies to children as well as to men, and it has special application at the present day. We do not know whether or not the custom of perpetrating “April fool jokes” was in vogue in the days of Solomon; but if it was not, there were people who told lies in sport, and against all such this language is directed. What are called “April fool jokes” are nothing else but lies, and the one who indulges in them proclaims himself a fool. We have seen people professing confidence, who countenance their children in such practices, in doubtless thinking that it was “innocence sport.” If a madman should come into a crowded assembly and begin to scatter firebrands, and shoot poisonous arrows, it would not be called innocent sport; but Solomon says he is just like one who deceives his neighbor, and says, “Am not I in sport?”SITI March 17, 1887, page 176.7

    The first of April is just before us, and we write this in hope that the eyes of some thoughtless ones may be open to see that a lie on the first day of April is just as sinful as one on any other day of the year; and that to tell a lie in sport is worse if possible than telling one in anger, because it indicates that the person’s moral sensibilities are so blunted that he can deliberately lie without having a thought of its sinfulness.SITI March 17, 1887, page 176.8

    “Wherefore putting away lying, speak every man truth with his neighbor; for we are members one of another.” Ephesians 4:25. Let parents see that they themselves are not blameworthy in this matter, and let them beware lest their children acquire, in sport, a disregard for truth, which will be difficult to overcome.SITI March 17, 1887, page 176.9

    “Sabbath Observance by Law” The Signs of the Times, 13, 11.

    E. J. Waggoner

    A friend in San Francisco, who has read with interest our appeal on the Sunday Law, writes to us:-SITI March 17, 1887, page 176.10

    “The seventh day being the day that God did command to be kept holy, what are the objections to making it the universal day of rest?”SITI March 17, 1887, page 176.11

    We reply that there are no objections at all, provided all people are willing to regarded it as a day of rest. On the contrary, it ought by all means to be universally regarded as the day of rest, because God has said, “Remember the Sabbath-day to keep it holy. Six days shat thoul labor, and do all thy works; but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord thy God; in it thou shalt not do any work;” and this commandment is addressed to all the inhabitants of the earth.SITI March 17, 1887, page 176.12

    But, sad to say, all people do not regard the word of the Lord as of final authority, and they ignore his commandment for a way of their own devising. Someone will say, “Then why not pass a law compelling people to obey the commandment of the Lord?” That would not solve the difficulty, for it would be forced service, and there would be in it no love for God, nor regard for his word. So that if we once started out on the legal plan, we should have to pass another law compelling men to love the Lord! But thoough such a law might be passed, it would amount to nothing, for love is not love unless it comes spontaneously from the heart.SITI March 17, 1887, page 176.13

    The obvious conclusion is that the keeping of the Sabbath is purely an act of religious worship of God, and is not within human jurisdiction. God wants all men to repent and come to the knowledge of the truth; and he has commissioned men as ambassadors to beg their fellow-men to be reconciled to God; but he has given no one the authority to attempt the impossibility of forcing men to repent. So he wants all men to acknowledge him, and to show their homage by keeping his Sabbath; and he has committed to men the preaching of the word; but he has given no one authority to try to compel men hypocritically to acknowledge him by a form of service. It would indeed be a glorious thing if all men would obey the Lord; but all will not. Our duty is simply to obey him for ourselves, and to use our influence to persuade others to do likewise. Those who will not obey are answerable alone to God, from whom they will at the Judgment receive the punishment which their rebellion merits.SITI March 17, 1887, page 176.14

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