“Sunday-Law Arrogance” The American Sentinel 5, 41, pp. 322, 323.

IN the Christian Union of July 26, Dr. Lyman Abbott, the editor, says on the question of Sunday:—

The current notion that Christ and his apostles authoritatively substituted the first day of the week for the seventh is absolutely without any authority in the New Testament.

This statement is undoubtedly true, as any one may satisfy himself by carefully reading the New Testament. It is also the view held by other leading Protestant doctors, notably Dr. Schaff, and by other leading publications, for instance, the Christian at Work.

In the same paper from which we make the above quotation, in “Home Talks about the Word,” Emily Huntington Miller on the subject of Christ, says:—

He taught by his example. He always kept holy the Sabbath day.

Now it is absolutely certain that Christ did not keep the first day of the week, but the seventh day according to the commandment, the day which all the Jews were observing. There was never any controversy about whether that day should be observed or not. The contention raised by the Pharisees against the Saviour was not whether that day should be kept, but how it should be kept. The day, therefore, which Christ kept holy was not the first day of the week; and, as he taught by his example, it is evident that there is no force whatever in his teaching by example in favor of the observance of the first day of the week.

This is the doctrine and this is the logic of these two quotations from the Christian Union. This is the truth as acknowledged by these two writers, and this journal. And being the truth, what basis is there in revelation, religion, or reason, for all these preachers and associations so urgently demanding the enactment of laws and the strict enforcement of the laws already in existence, to compel people to respect the first day of the week as the Lord’s day, the Sabbath day or the Christian Sabbath?

Such statements as these from those who believe in the observance of the first day of the week, plainly shows what THE SENTINEL, has always insisted upon, vix., [323] that the movement to secure the enactment and enforcement of Sunday laws, is nothing more nor less than a scheme of ambitious preachers to secure control of the civil power to force upon people their own will for the will of God. Such a thing would be bad enough if it were truly the will of God which they sought to enforce; but when it is their own will that they intend to put in the place of the will of God, and compel people to obey it as the will of God, then it is infinitely worse. The scheme is nothing less than an effort to put themselves in the place of God, and so to erect here a living likeness to a power which did that same thing before; that is, the Papacy.

A. T. J.

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