THERE have been several changes made in the calendar since it was first known to man, but it appears that there is yet need of another “reform,” more radical than those made by Julius Cesar and Pope Gregory. What this is, is indicated by the following words from the annual address of Miss Frances Willard, at the late W.C.T.U. Convention:—
“We must be careful always to let it be understood that those who observe some other day than the seventh, are to be respected in their belief by any law that we are working to help obtain.”
By “some other day than the seventh,” was meant some other day than Sunday: which is to say that Sunday is the seventh day, instead of Saturday. But as everybody knows, the calendar makes Saturday the seventh day of the week and Sunday the first day.
Now, when persons of the intelligence of the World’s W.C.T.U. president hold and proclaim that Sunday is the seventh day of the week, why do the makers of the almanac persist in holding to the old style of calling Sunday the first day instead of the seventh? Why can we not have a calendar that will be abreast of the “advanced thought” of the times, especially in so fundamental a matter as the numbering of the days of the week?
This is evidently what many of our Sunday-observing friends who still believe in the fourth commandment would like. But alas! even if the calendar could be so “reformed” as to make Sunday the seventh day of the week, and so harmonize its observance with the fourth commandment, it would only throw them hopelessly out of gear with other Scripture texts upon which they depend for justification of their practice. For they hold that the New Testament Scriptures plainly teach that Christ rose from the dead on the first day of the week, and as their Sabbath observance is based upon the resurrection of Christ, it can never be any other than the first day of the week upon which that observance must fall. Hence, to make Sunday the seventh day of the week would only be to throw the “Sabbath” over to Monday, which would be the first day of the week according to this new reckoning.
And as this is so, and as the calendar cannot be “reformed” so as to make Sunday anything else than the first day of the week, we can only wonder why intelligent people will persist in calling it the seventh.
NOTHING that is good in this world can be forced upon people against their will, without entirely losing its power to benefit them.