Puslapio vaizdai

A. They differ in these respects, the devotional services of heaven are perfectly pure and holy, and consist of praise and thanksgiving.

Q. 20. May the habitual neglect of prayer consist with the Christian character?

A. It is difficult to conceive, that it may. Prayer has been justly denominated the breath of the Christian.(°)

(o) Acts 9. 11. And the Lord said unto him, Arise and go into the street, which is called Straight, and inquire in the house of Judas for one called Saul of Tarsus; for behold he prayeth.


Q. 1.


What is meant by the Sabbath?

A. A day of rest from secular pursuits and worldly pleasures, in devotement to holy services. Q. 2. Is the Sabbath a moral or positive institution?

A. In a sense it is both. The separation of a portion of time to the worship of God is dictated by the light of nature, and therefore of moral obligation. But the quantity of time, as well as the particular time to be separated to the worship of God, is known only by Divine revelation, and is therefore of positive obligation.

Q. 3. What portion of time has God consecrated to be kept holy?

A. A seventh part-one day in seven.(a)

Q. 4. Why should the Sabbath be observed as a holy day?

A. Because it furnishes an opportunity for rest, serious reading and meditation, the religious education of children, Christian intercourse, and publick social worship; because the reason and fitness of things require it;-and because God has established

(a) Ex. 20. 8-10. Remember the sabbath day to keep it holy. Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work; but the seventh day is the sabbath of the Lord thy God; in it thou shalt not do any work, thou nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy man-servant, nor thy maid-servant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates.

it to be perpetually kept, as sacred to His ser


Q. 5. When was the Sabbath at first instituted?
A. Immediately upon the close of the creation.
Q. 6.
What is the evidence of this?

A. The fact, that the Scriptures represent it as then instituted; the design of the institution, which is the commemoration of the Divine perfections, in the work of creation, and the preparation of man for the kingdom of heaven; and also the fact that time was then, and onward, distinguished by weeks of seven days.(c)

Q. 7. Was the command to keep the Sabbath, renewed to the children of Israel?

A. It was, when God gave to them from Mount Sinai the ten commandments. (d)

Q. 8. Is the sabbatical institution in force under the Christian dispensation?

A. It is. As evidence of this, we have, in addition to the fourth commandment of the decalogue, which is perpetually binding upon all men, wheresoever it is made known, the practice of the Apostles of Him, who was Lord of the Sabbath, and the practice of the primitive Christians. The Sabbath, then, is a standing ordinance, and is, consequently, not abolished under the Christian dispensation; but continues in full force.

Q. 9. Which day of the week was the Jewish Sabbath?

(b) Ex. 20. 8. Remember the sabbath day to keep it holy.

(c) Gen.2.3. And God blessed the seventh day and sanctifiedit; because that in it he had rested from all his work which God created and made. Ex. 20. 11. For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day, wherefore the Lord blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it. A week was a well known period of time in the days of Jacob and Laban. Noah observed periods of seven days.

(d) Ex. 20. 8. Remember the sabbath to keep it holy.

A. It was the seventh day of the week.*

Q. 10. How long did the Jewish Sabbath continue?

A. Till Christ's resurrection from the dead.When Christ came and broke down the middle wall of partition between Jews and Gentiles, and restored all things to their primitive state, the Jewish Sabbath, which was typical of the rest, which He procured for His Church, was altered to the first dayof the week. The Jewish Sabbath was abolished, when the Mosaick dispensation ceased, and the things typified by it took place.

Q. 11. What is the evidence that the first day of the week is to be kept as the Sabbath, under the Christian dispensation.

A. The fact, that Christ arose from the dead on this day; and the fact, that the Apostles and prim

It is the opinion of some, that the Paradisaical sabbath, was the first day of the week. It is argued, that this sabbath was the seventh day from the beginning of creation, and the first after Adam's creation, and that Adam would naturally reckon time from the first day he began to exist, and that, therefore, the original sabbath was the first day of the week.-That this is a fact, Messrs. Bedford and Kennedy, two sacred chronologers of eminence, have attempted to demonstrate by astronomical calculations.--That the Sunday of the Heathen, which was the original sabbath, was the first day of the week, and is so still in the East, the learned Mr. Selden has endeavored to prove in his Jus. Nat. and Gent. Lib. III. Chap. 22. It is also the opinion of some, that the Paradisaical sabbath was altered to the Jewish sabbath, that God might distinguish His people. (the Jews,) from the Gentiles, who had become idolatrous, and who paid their homage on this day, not to the Father of lights, but to the sun, the brightest luminary of heaven, (hence the day came to be called Sunday,) and that His people might commemorate their deliverance from Egyptian bondage. That the Paradisaical sabbath, which was on the first day of the week, was altered to the Jewish sabbath, which was on the seventh day of the week, it is argued, that the former is represented in the Scriptures as different from the latter; that the latter, (the Jewish sabbath) as such, was designed to commemorate the deliverance of the children of Israel from the servitude of Egypt; that the Sunday of the Heathen, which was the original sabbath, is the first day of the week; that the Jews did anciently, and do now, keep as their sabbath the seventh day of the week; and that the Jewish sabbath was established as a sign between God and His people Israel. The Paradisaical sabbath, being common to all mankind, could not be a distinguishing sign to the Jews in particular. The passages of Scripture, adduced in favour of the above sentiments, are the following, viz. Ex. 20. 11. Ex. 16. 23, 25, 26, 29, 30. Deut. 5. 12, 15. Ex. 31. 13, 16. Ezek. 20. 10--12.

itive Christians observed the first day of the week as the Sabbath. But this they would not have done, had it not met the approbation of the Lord of the Sabbath; and His will is a law, and, consequently, their example has all the force, which can be attached to a precept or command.(e) *

Q. 12. When does the Sabbath begin?

A. Some are of the opinion, that it begins at evening, some, at midnight, some, at morning, and some, that it cannot be determined, when it does

(e) The first day of the week is called the Lord's day, in distinction from all other days, because it is designed to commemorate the resurrection of Christ. Rev. 1. 10. I was in the Spirit on the Lord's day. Mark 2. 28. Therefore the Son of man is Lord also of the Sabbath. On this day the Lord's Supper was administered, and the word of God was preached. Acts 20. 7. And upon the first day of the week, when the disciples came together to break bread, Paul preached unto them. It was the day of charitable collections. 1 Cor. 16. 2. Upon the first day of the week, let every one of you lay by him in store, as God hath prospered him, that there be no gatherings when I come. Christ appeared to His disciples on this day and blessed them. John 20. 1, 19, 26. The first day of the week cometh Mary Magdalene, early, when it was yet dark, unto the sepulchre, and seeth the stone taken away from the sepulchre. Then the same day at evening, being the first day of the week, when the doors were shut, where the disciples were assembled for fear of the Jews, came Jesus, and stood in the midst, and saith unto them, Peace be unto you. And after eight days, again his disciples were within, and Thomas with them. Then came Jesus, the doors being shut, and stood in the midst, and said, Peace be unto you. A change in the day of the sabbath seems to be intimated in the words of the apostle to the Hebrews. Heb. 4. 8-10. For if Jesus (Joshua) had given them rest, then would he not afterwards have spoken of another day. There remaineth therefore, a rest to the people of God. For he that is entered into his rest, he also hath ceased from his own works, as God did from his.

The pur

It is to be remembered, that the fourth commandment specifies no particular day to be kept as the sabbath, only one in seven. port of the command is, six days may be employed in labour, and the seventh, or one in seven is to be observed as a day of sacred rest. Elsewhere we are to look for the specification of the day of the sabbath.

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