ACCORDING to the Cleveland Leader of October 5, J. F. Andrews, a Presbyterian minister, was expelled recently from the Ohio Synod for preaching that “Saturday is the true Sabbath.” Commenting on the case, the Herald and Presbyter, of Cincinnati, in its issue of October 10, says:—
It is reported that the Presbytery of Muskingum, of the United Presbyterian Church, recently suspended one of its members from the ministry for persistently preaching and teaching that Saturday is the true Sabbath. He took an appeal to the synod meeting last week at Wheeling, W. Va. Of course, the Presbytery was sustained. He then gave notice of an appeal to the General Assembly. If the facts are as reported, it is hard to find words sufficiently condemnatory of such a man. The position of the United Presbyterian Church as to the Sabbath is so well known that any one seeking to agitate it on this line is a mere disturber of the peace. We shall expect to hear of some one denying the existence of God and appealing to some General Assembly, and then crying out that his liberty has been abridged because he is not sustained.
The full significance of this utterance will appear when it is remembered that the Word of God—the Bible—says plainly and in so many words, that “the seventh day is the Sabbath.” The ridicule af [sic.] the Herald and Presbyter falls not upon the offending minister but upon the Word of God and upon Him who will one day say: “Inasmuch as ye have done it unto the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.”
But the Herald and Presbyter is not consistent even with itself. On another page of the same issue containing the paragraph to which we refer, we find these words:—
Thus we see that the pope, in this matter acted arbitrarily, imperiously, and in utter disregard of the opinions and wishes of the priests and bishops in this country. But they have to submit, for the pope is vicar of Christ, the infallible head of the church. People who believe in and submit to ecclesiastical despotism are unfit for civil freedom.
We have no fault to find with this utterance in itself. But the Herald and Presbyter condemns itself in saying it. The matter to which it refers is the sending of a papal delegate to this country. This, it is asserted, the pope did contrary to the wishes of the American priests and bishops; and because they thus submit in a mere matter of discipline, the Herald and Presbyter thinks them unfit for civil freedom, while insisting that in a matter of faith, a question of conscience, a man ought to unquestioningly submit to the Presbyterian Church, even when the decision of the courts of that church is directly contrary to the Bible—the Protestants’ professed rule of faith.
But a thousand times rather would we stand with the poor deposed preacher than to occupy the highest place in a church which makes void the law of God by human tradition, or sit in the seat of the editor who hurls his shaft of ridicule against the humblest man who dares to obey God rather than man. The Judgment draws on apace.