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History, Authority, and Use,
JOSEPH JOHN GURNEY.
ACTS OF THE MARTYRS.
J. AND A. ARCH, CORNHILL;
In presenting to the public the following remarks on the history, authority, and use, of the sabbath, I feel that some apology is due from me in consequence of the late publication, on the same subject, of some excellent discourses by my worthy friend Daniel Wilson, of Islington. Such an apology is the more necessary, because our views on the subject very much correspond, and we have treated it on nearly the same plan.
The fact is, however, that my own opinions respecting the sabbath had been long previously formed ; and I had arranged the order of the present little work, before I had the opportunity of perusing his useful volume. While, therefore, I sincerely thank him for
pure valuable information, which was not before equally familiar to me, I consider it right to persevere in presenting to my fellow Christians of erery name, this humble effort for their good.
Persons who are desirous of promoting the religious welfare of the community, occupy in the present day a variety of stations, and their influence extends itself in very different directions. How important then that each should perform his own part faithfully, and thus that all should be labouring in the common cause of righteousness and truth!
Among the early Christians, the first day of the week was almost universally called the Lord's day-an appellation for which we have apostolic authority in the book of Revelation. Since, however, this title includes the sacred name, the familiar use of it appears to be undesirable; and I have therefore more usually adopted the term sabbath day. In applying to the Christian's day of rest and worship, the name of saBBATH, I consider that I am fully justified, both by the simple meaning of the word, and by the express language of the fourth commandment.
Should the evidences which I am about to adduce, be the means of convincing any doubtful mind of the divine authority of this institution, or of quickening the diligence of any
of my readers in the observance of its duties, I shall regard it as a fresh call for gratitude to that Being, without whose blessing no labour of Christian love can ever