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declaration, and the occasion for which it was made, that the fourth command was not to be binding on him, or his followers, either then, or in time to come. For, as he was Lord of the sabbath, had he intended to perpetuate the observance of that, or the first day, in lieu thereof, he would doubtless have reproved his disciples, instead of justifying them in the breach of it. And I am utterly at a loss from whence this author has derived his authority for asserting, that the apostles “ ever after called it the Lord's day ;" as I do not find the term, Lord'sday, ever mentioned in the New Testament, except once, in the Revelations : " I was in the Spirit on the Lord's day ;' hut there is no mention, that this was the first day of the week.
He has another passage so extraordinary, that I cannot well pass by it: page 22, he says, " the same God that said, thou shalt
not kill,' said also, remember the sabbath “ day to keep it holy :' if one is binding on
us, so also is the other; and that which “ teaches us the greatest duty, is the “ most binding. The fourth commandment
Rev. i. 10.
s teaches our duty to God, therefore the
fourth commandment is most binding." This is a singular, and very extravagant assertion ; for, if the fourth command is most binding, then it is a less crime in the sight of Heaven, to murder, commit adultery, steal, bear false witness, &c. than not to regard the Jewish sabbath ; for, the fourth command respects only the Jewish sabbath.
Our Saviour taught a different doctrine to one who inquired of him what he should do to inherit eternal life ? " Thou shalt do no murder, thou shalt not commit adultery, thou shalt not steal, thou shalt not bear false witness." But no mention is there made of the sabbath ; nor do we find that he ever enjoined the observance of it on any occasion. Indeed, it appears clear from the Scriptures, that the observance of the sabbath was only intended for the Jews ; for, it is said, “ The children of Israel shall keep the sabbath; to observe the sabbath throughout their generations, for a perpetual covenant. It is a sign between me and the children of Israel for ever.
But this was not said to any other people ; therefore, to as
al Mat. xix. 18.
• Ex. xxxi. 16, 17.
sert that the command for observing the sabbath, which is here declared by the Almighty to be a sign to the Israelites, is more binding on Christians, than the moral part of the law, is doctrine that will, I hope, be held in abhorrence by all professing the christian name.
Page 53, he says, “ The Quaker as well as “ any other person that dies guilty of a vio« lation of the fourth command, to observe a day holy unto God, must be damned as
sure as God is just and holy." I am apprehensive, that in penning this dreadful denunciation, he did not consider the consequences of it; for, it must be allowed, that the disciples violated the command respecting the sabbath, when Christ“ went through the corn-fields, and his disciples plucked the ears of corn and did eat; rubbing them in their hands." F
In pages 106 and 107, he says, “ It is true, 6 the old Pharisees did accuse our Lord and “his disciples of sabbath breaking, but I “ never heard of any, that accused our Lord,
or the apostles, of violating the sabbath, es but the oid Pharisees and the Quakers. & Andis it not a pity that the Quakers have no “better authority to substantiate their prin"ciples than the testimony of them old Phar
f Luke, vi, 1.
isees and that testimony a false one too?"
Let these declarations of his be compared with the testimony of the evangelist John, in relating the circumstance of Christ's healing the impotent man on the sabbath, and commanding him to take up his bed and walk; contrary to the command, « bear no burden on the sabbath day." & 16. Therefore," saith the evangelist, “ the Jews sought the more to kill him, because he not only had broken the sabbath, but said also, that God was his Father.” h
It is the evangelist himself who says, not the pharisees, that Christ had broken the sabbath. Therefore, in what a sad predicament has the author placed the disciples of our Lord, in the heat of his zeal against the Quakers. Let us now examine his own premises, and see, if we can find out what sabbath breaking is ; and whether he himself is clear in this point.
Page 22, he asserts, that " neither Christ nor his apostles have ever disannulled " one of the commandments ; but only ex
plained them. Therefore, if any man trans
gress the fourth commandment, he is guilty “ in the sight of God even as a murderer or a “thief is guilty, because he transgresses one " of the greatest commandments, and in fact “ he transgresses all the other six.” Now we will recur to the fourth commandment ; and to the injunctions of the Almighty, in respect to the observance of it. « Remember the sabbath day to keep it holy: in it, thou shalt not do any work ; thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy man servant, thy maid servant, nor thy cattle.” i And further, * ye shall kindle no fire throughout your habitations upon the sabbath day."* “Whosoever doeth
any work on the sabbath day, he shall surely be put to death."! None were even to gather sticks on the sabbath day. « Bear no burden on the sabbath
“ On the seventh day, thou shalt rest ; that thine ox and thine ass may
“ Let no man go out of his place on the seventh day.”p
Now I must refer to his assertion, page 22, " that the fourth commandment is most bind“ing.” He also says, respecting the keep
i Ex. XX. 8. 10. m Numb. xv. 32. ? Bx. xvi. 29.
k Ex. xxxv. 3. n Jer. xvii. 21.
Xxxi. 15. • Ex.xxü. 12.