THE Southwestern Presbyterian, of Dec. 5, 1895, says of Seventh-day Adventists:—
No law in the land commands these fanatics to keep Sunday as a sacred day, to assemble to worship at that time, but only to keep it a rest day from labor; but these sectarians persist in holding that it is a matter of conscience with them to work on the Lord’s day, and thus show their contempt of the honest convictions of the rest of the Christian world. They are not martyrs, but law-breakers, and as such should be dealt with.
This breathes the spirit of the Inquisition. It is true that no “law” of the land in so many words commands Seventh-day Adventists or anybody else “to keep Sunday as a sacred day,” “but only to keep it as a day of rest from labor.” But such rest is by the leading advocates of Sunday laws themselves declared to be worship. W. F. Crafts says:—
One day in every week an invisible Lord commands us to halt in the most absorbing pursuits of our earthly life; in the pursuit of money and business; in the pursuit of pleasure; in the pursuit of politics and fame; in the pursuit of education; and we halt as a sign that we believe in that invisible Lord and are loyal to his law. There is no other sign of our faith and loyalty so impressive to a selfish world as this twenty-four hours halt in our work every week at Christ’s command. The Lord’s day is therefore the “sign,” the ensign of our Lord Jesus Christ; … and this flag of Christ is carried round the world every week and is saluted by some in every land by the laying aside of tools and toil, in token of their loyalty to a living Lord.
All this and more is true of the Sabbath of the Lord, and it is for all this and more that Seventh-day Adventists observe the true Sabbath; and it is because this is true of the Sabbath and because it is not true of Sunday that Adventists refuse to acknowledge this false sign of faith and loyalty and thus profess to a selfish world adherence to something which they do not believe. Seventh-day Adventists believe that no other sign of their loyalty to the Creator of the heavens and the earth is so impressive as their twenty-four hour halt in their work every week in obedience to the fourth commandment; and believing this, they feel that they have no right to lessen the significance of that halt by obedience to a commandment of men which requires them to make another halt in honor of another day and another power; for God does not command the Sunday halt.
He who receives and uses a counterfeit coin is equally criminal with the maker of that coin; and so he who knowingly accepts and uses the counterfeit sabbath—the false sign of loyalty to Christ—partakes of the sin of those who made it.
The fourth commandment separates the Sabbath, the seventh day, from all other days and requires that all men shall respect that distinction. For Seventh-day Adventists to treat another day as they treat the Sabbath would be to disobey the commandment which requires them to keep the seventh day holy—to preserve the distinction which God himself has made between that and other days. It is for this reason and not from willful disregard of civil authority that Seventh-day Adventists refuse to observe Sunday. To do so would be to prove disloyal to Christ their King.