« السابقةمتابعة »
The Object of God in Creation.3 Experiments in England, the
A distinguished Merchant in
22 Passengers on board the Lex-
Physicians, Clergymen, and An old Man in Boston....
Senators destroyed..... .25 The Man who worked on the
PERMANENT SABBATH DOCUMENTS.
Ends for which the Sabbath was appointed, and
Reasons why it should be observed.
MAN is mortal and immortal. His body will soon die, and mingle with the dust. His soul will live, in a state of conscious, intelligent, moral, and accountable existence, forever. Knowledge is the food by which it grows in piety, wisdom, usefulness, and bliss. Of all the knowledge of which it is capable, the knowledge of God and of Jesus Christ is the most important. This is life — eternal life.
One grand object of Jehovah, in all his dealings with men, is to manifest himself, and give to them correct views of his character and will. This is designed to lead them to exercise right feelings and pursue a right course of conduct towards him,
themselves, and one another. By so doing, they will glorify their Maker, benefit themselves, and do the greatest good to their fellow-men.
For this God stretched out the heavens, and laid the foundations of the earth; created man, and made him lord of this lower world. For this he established for him various institutions and laws. Among them was the institution of the Sabbath, or a day of weekly rest from secular business and cares, of special devotion to the public worship of God, and the promotion of the spiritual and eternal interests of men.
The first great institution established in Paradise, for the human race, was that of marriage. This lays the foundation for families, and for social relations among men. The second great institution, established also in Paradise for the race, was that of the Sabbath. This was designed to regulate families, to point out the period for labor and the period for rest; for the public worship of God, and of special devotion to spiritual and eternal concerns. So important was this arrangement to the glory of God and to the welfare of men, that with reference to it he regulated his own conduct in the creation of the world. He wrought six days — himself. He then came out in the face of creation, and rested one day. He thus gave to this arrangement of six days for labor, and one for rest, the sanction of his high and holy example. This was the proportion which would, in all ages, be suited to the nature of men, adapted to their capacities, and essential to the supply of their wants. With reference to it, time itself was to be divided, not into days, or months, or years, merely, or into any periods measured by the revolutions of the earth or the heavenly bodies, but into weeks - periods of seven days; six for labor, and one for rest and special devotion to spiritual things. This division of time, measured by the conduct and will of God, and by the capacities and wants of men, was, among those who should know and do his will, to be as permanent and as universal as though it were measured by the revolutions of the earth or the heavenly bodies. It was to be, in all ages and all countries, a sign of the covenant between God and his people; an emblem and a foretaste of the rest which remaineth for them, and a special season of preparation for its eternal joys.
For this reason, Jehovah not only kept it himself, but he sanctified it, or set it apart from other days for this special purpose. He also blessed it, and with such a fulness of blessings that they flow out, to those who keep it, not only on that day, but through all the other days of the week. They are blessed in their bodies and souls, in their going out and their coming in, and in all their ways.
In the fifty-eighth chapter of Isaiah and thirteenth verse, Jehovah speaks as if the keeping of the Sabbath were obedience, or would promote obedience, to all his commands, and thus insure his blessing : “ If thou turn away thy foot from doing thy pleasure on my holy day, and call the Sabbath a delight, the holy of the Lord, honorable; and shalt honor him, not doing thine own ways, nor finding thine own pleasure, nor speaking thine own words; then shalt thou delight thyself in the Lord ; and I will cause thee to ride upon the high places of the earth, and feed thee with the heritage of Jacob, thy father; for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it."
In the seventeenth chapter of Jeremiah and twenty-first verse, we have an exhibition of the same great principle: “ Thus saith the Lord ; Take heed to yourselves, and bear no burden on the Sabbath day, nor bring it in by the gates of Jerusalem. Neither carry forth a burden out of your houses on the Sabbath day, neither do ye any work, but hallow ye the Sabbath day, as I commanded your fathers. But they obeyed not, neither inclined their ear, but made their neck stiff, that they might not hear, nor receive instruction. And it shall come to pass,
if gently hearken unto me, saith the Lord, to bring in no burden through the gates of this city on the Sabbath day, but hallow the Sabbath day, to do no work therein; then shall there enter into the gates of this city kings and princes sitting upon the throne of David, riding in chariots and on horses, they and their princes, the men of Judah, and the inhabitants of
ye diliJerusalem: and this city shall remain forever. And they shall come from the cities of Judah, and from the places about Jerusalem, and from the land of Benjamin, and from the plain, and from the mountains, and from the south, bringing burnt-offerings, and sacrifices, and meat-offerings, and incense, and bringing sacrifices of praise, unto the house of the Lord. But if ye will not hearken unto me to hallow the Sabbath day, and not to bear a burden, even entering in at the gates of Jerusalem on the Sabbath day ; then will I kindle a fire in the gates thereof, and it shall devour the palaces of Jerusalem, and it shall not be quenched.”
In the above passages Jehovah speaks as if the keeping of the Sabbath were every thing; as if it comprehended, or would secure, obedience to all his commands. This, in an important sense, is the case. Such is the nature of man, such the institution of the Sabbath, and such the effect which the keeping of it will have upon him, that, if he is obedient to God in this thing, he will be obedient to him in other things. A Sabbath-keeping people will be an obedient people. The manner in which they treat the Sabbath will be a test of their character, an index of their morality and religion. God did not think it necessary, therefore, to say to his people, in these passages, that, if they would not commit murder, he would bless them; or, if they would not be guilty of theft, he would bless them. He knew that, if they would rightly keep the Sabbath, they would not commit murder or theft, or ordinarily be guilty of any gross outward crimes. Men who regularly observe the Sabbath, and habitually attend public worship, which is a part of the proper observance of that day, do not commit such crimes. While they keep the Sabbath, God keeps them; not by force or coercion of any kind, but by the influence of moral government, through means of his appointment.