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    March 24, 1887

    “Object of the Sabbath” The Signs of the Times, 13, 12.

    E. J. Waggoner

    A short time ago the Rev. F. N. Zabriskie, D. D., wrote a series of articles for the Congregationalist, on “The Bible the Workingmen’s Book,” in one of which he said:-SITI March 24, 1887, page 182.1

    “The fourth commandment was a law in behalf of workingmen, that they should not be deprived of a weekly rest. The Mosaic law of the Sabbath is often misrepresented, and is apt to be misunderstood by those for whom it is specially intended. The Sabbath as our Lord Jesus Christ said, ‘was made for man,’ and being a day of rest, it was, of course, pre-eminently made for the workingman. The essential object which the commandment seeks is rest from unnecessary labor.”SITI March 24, 1887, page 182.2

    This is an idea which is fast gaining ground, and which cannot be too strongly combated. It is the prevalence of this idea which gives a great impetus to the movement in favor of a Sunday law. Because of this idea, many irreligious persons will vote for a law enforcing Sunday observance, when they would not do so if it were set before them on a purely religious basis. Of course the result is the same, no matter what motives prompt those who work for the law. Sunday being essentially an institution of the church, if observance of it is enforced by civil law we shall have to that extent a union of Church and State, even though infidels may have voted for the law. The idea that God’s design in appointing a day of rest for man was simply for the wants of the physical nature, is a modern device gotten up by the zealous adherents of Sunday observance, with the design of accomplishing a two-fold purpose with respect to the Sunday. If this theory be accepted, its first result is to make men think that the particular day of the week which shall be observed is of no importance, and that the only object is uniformity for the sake of convenience. And the second result is the enforcement of Sunday, the day which has the most adherents, on the basis that the State has a right to legislate for the physical well-being of its citizens.SITI March 24, 1887, page 182.3

    The Sabbath was made for man; not for one man simply but for all mankind. The fourth commandment was a law in behalf of the workingmen, only in the sense that God designed that all men should be workingmen. It is true that the Sabbath rest furnishes opportunity for the repair of physical waste, so that man is better able to perform the duties of the week following. But this is incidental; we cannot say that it is even a secondary reason for the giving of the fourth commandment, because it does not enter into the matter at all. The keeping of the Sabbath is primarily an act of worship. The Sabbath was given as a memorial of God’s creative power. It was given that man might ever keep in mind the one true God, whose distinguishing characteristic is that he created the heavens and the earth. It was given to guard men against idolatry; for those who keep the Sabbath according to God’s appointment, and for the reason for which he appointed it, can never worship false gods. Every man will worship the object which to him seems greatest. Some men think there is nothing greater in creation than themselves, and so they worship themselves. They are called atheists, because the god that they worship is so insignificant that they are considered as not recognizing any God. But the man whose mind is drawn out to meditate upon the wonders of creation, and who realizes that the things that are made reveal the existence of the one only true God, will never worship any inferior being. The Sabbath was appointed for the express purpose of giving man an opportunity to meditate upon God and his works, and thus to keep alive the sentiment of real religion. Those keeping the Sabbath have the first principle of worship to God. The man who thinks that it was given for the purpose of securing proper physical rest to man, has no just conception of the nature of the Sabbath.SITI March 24, 1887, page 182.4

    But since the Sabbath was appointed by the Creator, that man might recognize him as Creator, and since it is purely a matter of worship and of recognition of the true God, it follows as a matter of course that the rest must be upon the particular day which God has designated as the Sabbath. Otherwise God is in reality ignored. Worship implies submission. Submission is indicated by obedience. When a man refuses to obey another, it is because he considers himself equal to, or superior to that other, and of course there would be no thought in his mind of worshiping such an one. So if men really worship God, they will submit to his will in all respects. If they willfully disobey him, they show that their worship is only a form, and that they think more of themselves than they do of him.SITI March 24, 1887, page 182.5

    The Sabbath, as we have shown, is the most simple and direct act of worship to God, and since God has specified the seventh day as the Sabbath, it follows that the keeping of any other day as the Sabbath, is not an act of worship to God. It was the seventh day alone upon which God rested from his work of creation. The seventh day alone was blest by him because he had rested upon it, and it was the seventh day and no other, which God appointed for man’s observance, with the design that as God upon that day had viewed all his works and pronounced them very good, so man should upon that day consider the works of God and should glorify the Creator. W.SITI March 24, 1887, page 182.6

    “‘A Weighty and Timely Utterance.’ (Concluded.)” The Signs of the Times, 13, 12.

    E. J. Waggoner

    (Concluded.)

    Dr. Bailey closes up his Sunday argument thus:-SITI March 24, 1887, page 182.7

    “I present but one additional argument; and this I address to those who read the Greek language. If we translate literally the Greek Testament in all four of the evangelists, when speaking of the resurrection of Christ, it would show that a new order of Sabbaths began at that time. In Matthew 28:1 it reads literally, ‘In the end of Sabbaths as it began to dawn towards the first of Sabbaths, came Mary Magdalene.’ The word Sabbath is sabbatoon, genitive plural, with no article preceding; so it is in end of Sabbaths; and the word translated week is also sabbatoon, genitive plural with no article. It reads eis mian sabbatoon, towards the first of Sabbaths, as if the old order of Sabbaths had passed away, and a new order of Sabbaths had begun. In Mark 16:1 it reads literally, ‘And when the Sabbath (singular number) was past, Mary Magdalene,’ etc. Verse 2, ‘Now upon the first of Sabbaths they came to the sepulcher.’ The same transition is here marked from the old to the new Sabbaths. In Luke 24:1 it reads: ‘Now upon the first of Sabbath, very early in the morning they came unto the sepulcher.’ Luke uses the article, the first of the Sabbaths, but his language, like that of Matthew and Mark, indicates a new order of things. John 20:1 reads, literally: ‘The first of the Sabbaths cometh Mary Magdalene while it was yet dark unto the sepulcher.’”SITI March 24, 1887, page 182.8

    The only mistake in the above, from the Sunday point of view, is in addressing the “argument” to those who read the Greek language. The writer evidently gave it for the effect it would have on those who know nothing of the Greek, for no one who has even a little knowledge of that language would be deceived by statements so palpably absurd. The translation of the passages to which he refers is literally exact in the Authorized Version, and no one having a reputation as a scholar to maintain, would dare attempt to translate them differently. We dislike to refer to the Greek, when writing for the general reader, because those who do not read that language have not the power to verify what we say. But we must notice this perversion of the Scripture, and will try to do it in such a way as to be understood by all. It is true that in Matthew 28:1; Mark 16:2, Luke 24:1 and John 20:1, the word rendered “week” is sabbaton. On this word Dr. Robinson, who by the way was a Baptist, in his Lexicon of the New Testament said:-SITI March 24, 1887, page 182.9

    “Meton., a sabbath, put for the interval ‘from Sabbath to Sabbath;’ hence a se’unight, week; so especially Luke 18:12, nesteuo dis tou sabbatou. Elsewhere only after numerals marking the days of the week; Mark 16:9, prote (hemera) sabbatou. Plur., Matthew 28:1, 1, 19; Acts 20:7; 1 Corinthians 16:2.-So Heb. shabbathoth, Scpt., hebdomadas, Leviticus 23:15. Comp. Deuteronomy 16:9; also the Syriac version Luke 18:12. In the Talmudists the days of the week are written, chadh beshabboth, sheni besh, shelisha besh’, i.e., the first, second, third day in the Sabbath (week). See Lightfoot Hor. Heb. in Matthew 28:1.”SITI March 24, 1887, page 182.10

    The reader will notice that Dr. Robinson refers to several other texts where the same word occurs, and where it is properly rendered “week.” Let us try Mr. Bailey’s translation on these passages. Take Luke 18:12: “I fast twice in the week; I give tithes of all I possess.” The word rendered “week” is sabbaton. Dr. Bailey would translate the passage “I fast twice in the Sabbath,” and would explain it that the Pharisee was priding himself because he fasted twice every Sunday!SITI March 24, 1887, page 182.11

    Mr. Bailey claims that in the texts to which he refers, the word sabbaton should be rendered “Sabbath,” so as to read, “the first of Sabbaths,” thus indicating, he says, that “the old order of Sabbaths had passed away and a new order of Sabbaths had begun.” But in Acts 20:7 we have the same expression again, in the narration of an event which took place thirty years after the crucifixion. Was this the first of a new order of Sabbaths? If so, what order was it? Mr. Bailey’s rendering would make a new order of Sabbaths to begin at the resurrection, and another order thirty years after, when Paul was at Troas. Still further, the same expression occurs in 1 Corinthians 16:2, where Paul directs the brethren to lay aside money “on the first day of the week.” Mr. Bailey’s rendering of the passage would make Paul direct the churches to lay by them in store on the first of every new order of Sabbaths! Unless a new order of Sabbaths was instituted frequently, their liberality would not be greatly taxed. It might be noted further that Mr. Bailey in his rendering of the expression entirely ignores the word hemera (day), which occurs in the text. But it is unnecessary to carry this point further, for anyone can see from the texts cited the absurdity of his so-called argument. Mr. Bailey himself seems to have enough knowledge of the Greek to have some sense of the absurdity of his own position, for he concludes:-SITI March 24, 1887, page 182.12

    “Thus there is wonderful agreement of the four evangelists in using this singular expression. It seems to me to convey the idea of a grand change from one order of Sabbaths on the seventh day of the week, to another and new order of Sabbaths on the first day of the week. That such a change then and there actually occurred, I have abundantly shown from various other proofs, even if these passages be not literally translated as suggested above.”SITI March 24, 1887, page 182.13

    Said the Irish barrister: “May it please the Court, if I am wrong on this point I have another that is equally conclusive.” In all Sunday argument the idea seems to be that a good many weak points will make one strong one; that although a dozen statements may be individually fallacious, they will when combined make a true one. That is on the principle that if you add enough ciphers together you will get something of value. The three lines of argument which Mr. Bailey gives from Scripture, from history, and from the Fathers, remind us of the plea in the famous kettle suit. The man who was charged with breaking his neighbor’s kettle, made his defense under three heads, thus: “First, the kettle was cracked when I borrowed it. Second, it was whole when I carried it back. Thus, I never borrowed it.” If one of these points was disproved, he had two others to fall back on. It made no difference if they did contradict each other, it was proof.SITI March 24, 1887, page 182.14

    We have now followed Mr. Bailey through all the windings of his “weighty and timely utterance” in behalf of Sunday. We have done it not with any desire to depreciate Mr. Bailey, but in order to show the inherent weakness of the Sunday cause. We have no doubt that he did the best he could, and that his utterances are just as weighty as any that could be made. In contrast with the vain attempts to put the first day in the place of the seventh as the Sabbath, we present the simple argument for the true Sabbath in the following words:-SITI March 24, 1887, page 182.15

    “And God spake all these words,” saying, “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 20:1, 8-11.SITI March 24, 1887, page 183.1

    “The works of his hands are verity and judgment; all his commandments are sure. They stand fast for ever and ever, and are done in truth and uprightness.” Psalm 111:7, 8.SITI March 24, 1887, page 183.2

    “And it is easier for heaven and earth to pass, than one tittle of the law to fail.” Luke 16:17. W.SITI March 24, 1887, page 183.3

    “The Seventh Day of the Week” The Signs of the Times, 13, 12.

    E. J. Waggoner

    In the Bible Banner a man who is attempting to settle the Sabbath question, says: “This fourth commandment, in itself, says nothing about the ‘day of the week,’ any more than it does of the month or year.” Very well, let us suppose that it refers to the year. Then the words, “Six days shalt thou labor, and do all thy work; but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord thy God,” would mean that we are to work six days of the year, and rest on the seventh. That would give us only one Sabbath in the year, which might be very agreeable to some; but it would also give us only six days in the year for work! What about the remaining three hundred and fifty-eight days? On them, according to the year theory, no one can either work or rest! We think no one will be foolish enough to deliberately take the position that “the seventh day” of the fourth commandment means the seventh day of the year.SITI March 24, 1887, page 183.4

    Well, then, let us suppose that the commandment refers to the month. Thus “Six days shal thou labor, 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,” would mean that work may be done six days in the month, but that the seventh day of the month is the Sabbath, when no work may be done. In this case we should have twelve Sabbaths in the year, and seventy-two days for work. Many people would be hard pressed to know how to earn a living in those seventy-two days; but they would be much more troubled to know how to employ the remaining two hundred and eighty-one days of the year, in which they could neither work nor rest. We believe that no one, even of those who most hate the Sabbath, will claim that “the seventh day” of the fourth commandment applies to the month any more than to the year.SITI March 24, 1887, page 183.5

    Well, it must refer to something. Certainly; it applies to a period of time which consists of exactly seven days, six of which are to be used for labor, and the seventh for rest. Now the only period of seven days that is known to man, is the week, and this division of time has been known from the most ancient times. “Seven days make one week,” is one of the first things learned by the school-boy. Therefore when the Lord said, “Six days shalt thou labor, 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,” it is evident that he meant that we may work six days in the week, but that we must rest on the seventh day of the week. And the child of ten years who should profess ignorance of the fact that the first day of the week is Sunday, and that the seventh or last day of the week is Saturday, would be regarded in this age of schools and schoolmasters as a much neglected youth.SITI March 24, 1887, page 183.6

    One stock argument of our Sunday friends is that it is very essential that all people should keep the same day, so that there may be no clashing. No one will deny this. Certainly people ought all to keep the same day. And if this is so, it is very evident that God knew it when he gave the commandment. Then he must have commanded all the people to keep the same day. As a matter of fact, all the Jews did regard the same day as the Sabbath. No one will deny this. All will admit that when the Lord gave the commandment, he expected all to whom it was spoken to keep the same day. Then the commandment must refer to a definite day, and to one which all understood. That is, all must have understood “the seventh day” to refer to some specific day; for if they had had the idea that the Lord meant simply that they could rest on any day after six days of labor, and that there was no specific point from which to begin their count, there would have been no uniformity. But there was uniformity among those who regarded the commandment, because the commandment is definite. Two things being granted, the third must follow. Let it be granted that uniformity in the day of rest is essential, and that God knew this when he gave the commandment, and it must be admitted that the fourth commandment specifies a definite day as the Sabbath, and that that day is the seventh day of the week.SITI March 24, 1887, page 183.7

    So we find that the fourth commandment does in itself tell what day of the week is the Sabbath. For corroborative proof, we turn to the account of Christ’s crucifixion and resurrection. He was crucified on the preparation day, “and the Sabbath drew on.” Luke 23:54. And the women who followed, and saw where he was laid, “returned, and prepared spices and ointment; and rested the Sabbath day according to the commandment.” Verse 56. That means that they did exactly as the commandment enjoins. Now the next day after that Sabbath day which they kept “according to the commandment,” was “the first day of the week” (Luke 24:1) and on it they resumed their work. Now since there are but seven days in the week, it inevitably follows that “the Sabbath day” which the fourth commandment enjoins is the seventh day of the week. No man on earth can prove anything to the contrary; and no sane man would think of denying so plain a conclusion, if it were not that he wished to turn aside from the simple commandment of the Lord, for a way of his own choosing. W.SITI March 24, 1887, page 183.8

    “The Lord’s Prayer. Thy Will Be Done” The Signs of the Times, 13, 12.

    E. J. Waggoner

    It is probable that this part of the Lord’s prayer is the least understood of any. The sentence, “thy will be done,” is thought by most people to be applicable only in cases of sickness or other trial, to indicate that the sufferer is willing to endure patiently. But this is but a very limited view of the expression. As a matter of fact there is no more comprehensive sentence in the Bible, or that can be uttered by man, than the simple words, “thy will be done.” It all depends on what the will of the Lord is, which point we must investigate.SITI March 24, 1887, page 186.1

    The second chapter of Romans has reference especially to the Jews, to show that they, as well as the Gentiles, are sinners, and in verses 17, 18 the apostle speaks to them directly, in these words: “Behold, thou art called a Jew, and restest in the law, and makest thy boast of God, and knowest[his will, and approvest the things that are more excellent, being instructed out of the law.” How does Paul say the Jew knew the will of God? Because he was instructed out of the law. The obvious conclusion, then, is that the will of God may be known only by a study of the law, which makes necessary the further conclusion that the law of God is his will.SITI March 24, 1887, page 186.2

    This conclusion is verified most plainly by the words which the psalmist utters prophetically in behalf of Christ. In Psalm 40:7, 8, we read: “Then said I, Lo, I come; in the volume of the book it is written of me, I delight to do thy will, O my God; yea, thy law is within my heart.” It is first stated that Christ delighted to do the will of the Father; and then to make this statement emphatic, it is added, “Yea, thy law is within my heart.” Out of the heart are the issues of life (Proverbs 4:23); as a man thinketh in his heart, so is he (Proverbs 23:7); that is, a man’s actions correspond to that which is in his heart; he does just what is in his heart. Therefore if the law of God being in a man’s heart, leads him to delight to do the will of God, it follows that the law of God is the will of God.SITI March 24, 1887, page 186.3

    In Revelation 22:14 we read that they who keep the commandments shall have right to the tree of life, and enter in through the gates into the city; and in Matthew 7:21 we read that only those who do the will of God, shall enter into the kingdom of Heaven. Here again we see the identity of the will of God and the commandments. If there is any doubt in anyone’s mind as to what law it is that is the will of God, it may be settled by reading Romans 2:21, 22 in connection with verses 17-20, the first two of which have been quoted. The ten commandments are the will of God.SITI March 24, 1887, page 186.4

    Therefore when we pray, “Thy will be done,” we in reality pray that the commandments of God may be kept by us and by all others who dwell on the earth. We pray that they may be kept even as they are kept in Heaven, where the angels “do his commandment, hearkening unto the voice of his word.” Psalm 103:20. It follows, therefore, that whoever utters the Lord’s prayer or a prayer modeled after it, and does not in his heart “consent unto the law that it is good,” and honestly desires to conform to all its requirements, is guilty of mockery before God. Such an one cannot hope to have his petition regarded; and so we may understand the words of the psalmist: “If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me” (Psalm 66:18); and of Solomon: “He that turneth away his ear from hearing the law, even his prayer shall be abomination.” Proverbs 28:9.SITI March 24, 1887, page 186.5

    When will this petition be granted? When shall the will of God be done in earth as it is now done in Heaven? The preceding clause, upon which we commented in our last article, answers this question. It is when the kingdom of God is established upon the earth; for in the new heavens and the new earth, righteousness alone shall dwell. 2 Peter 3:13. “Thy people also shall be all righteous; they shall inherit the land forever.” Isaiah 60:21. The law of God, his holy will, is righteousness (Psalm 119:172), and the keeping of it constitutes the righteousness of God’s people. Deuteronomy 6:25. The Lord’s prayer, therefore teaches us to long for the coming and kingdom of our Lord, when the law of God shall be in the hearts of all men, even as it was in the heart of the Son of God when he was on earth.SITI March 24, 1887, page 186.6

    But the coming of the Lord, and the establishment of his kingdom, will not bring about this state of things. When Christ comes, the only change which is wrought in men is the change from mortality to immortality. He does not change men’s characters from sinfulness to righteousness, for just before he comes the decree goes forth: “He that is unjust, let him be unjust still; and he which is filthy, let him be filthy still: and he that is righteous, let him be righteous still; and he that is holy, let him be holy still.” Revelation 22:11. Men will be ushered into eternity with just the same characters that they have when probation closes. Those who inhabit the new earth will all be righteous, simply because the transgressors will have been rooted out of it (Proverbs 2:22), and the perfect will be permitted to remain in it, just because they are perfect in the midst of unrighteousness, even as Noah was.SITI March 24, 1887, page 186.7

    This being the case, it follows that to utter the Lord’s prayer with honesty of heart, is to pray that God will work in us that which is good; it indicates a willingness to submit ourselves in all things to the will of God, that we may become like him. Certainly no one who knows what the will of God is, and who knows how it will come to pass that the will of God shall be done on earth as it is in Heaven, could utter that prayer and not really desire to have that law written in his heart.SITI March 24, 1887, page 186.8

    Although God’s ways are as much higher than our ways as the heavens are higher than the earth, we have the assurance that every petition offered in humility and sincerity will be answered, and as we may attain to this high standard. They that hunger and thirst after righteousness shall be filled. “For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.” 2 Corinthians 5:21. W.SITI March 24, 1887, page 186.9

    “Back Page” The Signs of the Times, 13, 12.

    E. J. Waggoner

    We have lately received requests from various quarters for an explanation of 2 Corinthians 3:6-11. We have had an article on that subject in waiting for some time, and it will soon appear in the SIGNS.SITI March 24, 1887, page 192.1

    All persons having any business with the Kentucky Tract and Missionary Society will please take notice that Sister Alice C. Scott, of Cecillian, Hardin County, Ky., has been appointed State Secretary, since Brother Harry Rupert resigned.SITI March 24, 1887, page 192.2

    People who expect to have their communications attended to, should sign their full name and address. Even though the communication is only a question that does not require a personal answer, but may be answered through the paper, we must know who sends the question before we answer it. Anonymous letters and questions always go direct to the waste basket. No one should ever write anything to which he is ashamed or afraid to sign his name.SITI March 24, 1887, page 192.3

    Says the Golden Gate of March 12: “That powerful bands of spirits, embracing the wisest and best of the children of men of all past ages, are now organizing for the spiritual unfoldment of humanity, is the uniform testimony of all our mediums.” This is in direct fulfillment of the prophecy: “Woe to the inhabiters of the earth and of the sea! for the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time.” Revelation 12:12.SITI March 24, 1887, page 192.4

    On the 17th of February, Rev. J. H. Pettengell died, in New Haven, Conn., aged seventy-two. Professor Pettengell was quite widely known as a vigorous writer in behalf of the doctrine of conditional immortality, or eternal life only through Christ. Many extracts from his pen have appeared in the SIGNS, of which he was a constant reader. He retained his connection with the Congregationalist Church until his death, although his pronounced views in regard to conditional immortality, shut him out, years ago, from any pulpit of that denomination.SITI March 24, 1887, page 192.5

    Mrs. Bateham, superintendent of the “Sabbath Observance Department” of the National W. C. T. U., has issued a circular to Christian ministers, begging them to preach a sermon on Sabbath observance, “on the first Sabbath of April next.” We have no doubt but this request will be quite largely complied with; we hope it will. For the benefit of those who may be in doubt, we will here state that “the first Sabbath in April” falls this year on the second day of the month. Remember the time appointed for the preaching of the sermon-Sabbath, April 2, 1887.SITI March 24, 1887, page 192.6

    Speaking of the probable union of the National W. C. T. U. and the Knights of Labor, Joseph Cook said: “Powderly is a Catholic, Miss Willard a Methodist; if they can join hands, they may, as she says, ‘lift civilization to a table-land across which Christ may walk.’” It is strange how Christ is ignored by so many who profess to revere his name and who desire the advancement of his cause. How ignored? Just in this way: They have the idea of a temporal kingdom of Christ, and they think that upon them devolves the work of bringing the world to such a state of godliness that Christ will come and take possession. This is National Reform doctrine pure and simple, and it is just what is implied in the above-quoted remark. And so the work of Christ by his Spirit, the only means by which people can be made better, is ignored by those who blindly think that they are honoring him. Why will professed Christian workers imagine that they can do what the Spirit of the Lord cannot, namely, make all people Christians? While they are thus employing impotent human agencies, the world is steadily going to destruction.SITI March 24, 1887, page 192.7

    At the request of the California Conference Committee, we publish the following sections from the State constitution, which they would like to have well considered by the churches within the Conference, and by those desiring to labor in any part of it:-SITI March 24, 1887, page 192.8

    “When any church, or scattered brethren, wish ministerial labor in their vicinity, they all should be made to the Executive Committee.”SITI March 24, 1887, page 192.9

    “Those who may feel it their duty to exercise their gifts as preachers or colporteurs, shall lay their exercises of mind before the Conference Committee, and the committee may license them if they consider them qualified.”SITI March 24, 1887, page 192.10

    “‘The Seventh Day Is the Sabbath’” The Signs of the Times, 13, 12.

    E. J. Waggoner

    In answer to the question, “Should the Sabbath be kept absolutely holy?” the editor of the Christian Standard (March 12, 1887) says:-SITI March 24, 1887, page 192.11

    “The first day of the week, which is called the Lord’s day, is not the Sabbath. The Sabbath is the seventh day, or Saturday. This day, as is well known, is observed by the Jews, under the teaching of the law of Moses. They do not, and never did, keep it absolutely holy. The first day of the week is made a day of rest for man and beast by the law of the land.... While the first day of the week is not hedged about with the restrictions that pertained to the Sabbath of the law, it is meant that it be especially devoted to religious services-and not to business or pleasure.”SITI March 24, 1887, page 192.12

    Truly, “their rock is not as our rock.” The Lord says, “Remember the Sabbath-day, to keep it holy;” but the Standard says that the Sabbath-day is not to be remembered at all, but that another day, which is not the Sabbath, is to be kept in its place. Let all who read this remember the following truths, which are admitted by this champion of the first-day observance:-SITI March 24, 1887, page 192.13

    1. Saturday is the seventh day.SITI March 24, 1887, page 192.14

    2. The seventh day is the Sabbath.SITI March 24, 1887, page 192.15

    3. The first day of the week is not the Sabbath.SITI March 24, 1887, page 192.16

    4. The observance of the seventh-day Sabbath is enjoined by the law of God.SITI March 24, 1887, page 192.17

    5. The observance of the first day, which is not the Sabbath, is enjoined by the law of the land.SITI March 24, 1887, page 192.18

    There is the whole case in a nut-shell. Reader, can you have any doubt as to your duty?SITI March 24, 1887, page 192.19

    “Training Up Criminals” The Signs of the Times, 13, 12.

    E. J. Waggoner

    The trial of a young man in San Francisco, for the murder of a girl, has just been completed. The fact that the murder was committed being well known, there was no attempt to conceal it, and the usual defense, insanity, was resorted to. In proof of his insanity his mother testified that from the time the defendant was a baby he had “spells.” “When two or three years of age he would lie down on his back on the floor or on the sidewalk and, without any provocation whatever, would kick, and scream, and cry. He could not be quieted; candy would have no effect on him. As he grew older, these spells would increase.” It was also in evidence that on his way home from school one day, he threw a stone, without any provocation, and broke a window.SITI March 24, 1887, page 192.20

    Very natural that these spells should increase. But if, in the place of candy, some of Solomon’s remedy had been judiciously and vigorously administered, there is no doubt that it would have been effectual in stopping that incipient insanity. We have seen scores of children who were subject to just such “spells.” And too often their mothers were training them in it, and preparing the way for their future career as criminals. Everybody is born with greater or less inclination to evil; it is the duty of the parent to counteract this tendency, and by insisting on prompt obedience, to lay the foundation for a law-abiding citizen. But what hope is there for the future, when natural depravity is fostered by parents, and when the very fact that a person is depraved enough to commit a barbarous act is considered evidence that he should not be punished?SITI March 24, 1887, page 192.21

    “This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce.” 2 Timothy 3:1-3.SITI March 24, 1887, page 192.22

    “Beginning of the Day” The Signs of the Times, 13, 12.

    E. J. Waggoner

    “Not being clear upon the division of time, I appeal to you for help. It seems to me from some scriptures that the day should begin in the morning. It seems to be more consistent in beginning the day in the morning at the creation. At the resurrection of Christ it says, “As it began to dawn toward the first day of the week,” etc. And again it speaks of darkness lasting from the sixth to the ninth hour. Now if the day began in the evening it would be dark all the time, and then it would make the crucifixion of Christ in the night. Please answer through the SIGNS OF THE TIMES. C. H. E.”SITI March 24, 1887, page 192.23

    If our correspondent will read carefully the first chapter of Genesis he will see that it would not be consistent to begin the day in the morning. Time as distinguished from eternity, is reckoned from the first act of creation. The second verse of the Bible tells us that darkness was upon the face of the deep, that is, upon the chaotic mass which had been spoken into existence. The next act of creation is recorded in the third verse: “And God said, Let there be light; and there was light.” This constituted the first day’s work. The evening, the darkness, and the morning, the light, were the first day. Here it is seen that in the first day the dark preceded the light part, and consequently the same order must necessarily follow in all succeeding days. The record of creation is alone sufficient to show that the day begins with the evening. Where our correspondent falls into difficulty is in forgetting that while each day is twenty-four hours long, and is composed of a period of darkness and a period of light, the dark part of the day is called night, and the light part is also called day; so we use the word “day” in two senses: (1) as applying to the whole period of twenty-four hours, and (2) as applying to the part of the day when the sun shines.SITI March 24, 1887, page 192.24

    The Hebrews always began their day at the going down of the sun, but they had a separate reckoning for the hours of the night and for those of the day. The night was divided into four watches of about three hours each; the day was divided into twelve hours. To be sure, at some seasons of the year, there are less than twelve hours of daylight, and at other seasons more, but throughout the year there is an average of just twelve hours of darkness and twelve hours of light in each day. Therefore they reckoned the period of daylight uniformly from six o’clock. Then the first hour of the day would be seven o’clock, the third hour nine o’clock, the sixth hour twelve, the ninth hour three o’clock, and the twelfth hour six o’clock. So at the crucifixion of Christ darkness was from noon until three o’clock. This mode of reckoning is everywhere used in the Bible and yet it is well understood that the day properly began at evening, as we read in Leviticus 23:32, “From even unto even, shall ye celebrate your Sabbath.”SITI March 24, 1887, page 192.25

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