HISTORY OF THE SABBATH
FIRST DAY OF THE
By J. N. Andrews
THE history of the Sabbath embraces the period of 6000
years. The seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord. The acts which
constituted it such were, first, the example of the Creator; secondly, his
placing his blessing upon the day; and thirdly, the sanctification or
divine appointment of the day to a holy use. The Sabbath, therefore, dates
from the beginning of our world's history. The first who Sabbatized on the
seventh day is God the Creator; and the first seventh day of time is the
day which he thus honored. The highest of all possible honors does,
therefore, pertain to the seventh day. Nor is this honor confined to the
first seventh day of time; for so soon as God had rested upon that day, he
appointed the seventh day to a holy use, that man might hallow it in
memory of his Creator.
This divine appointment grows out of the nature and fitness
of things, and must have been made directly to Adam, for himself and wife
were then the only beings who had the days of the week to use. As it was
addressed to Adam while yet in his uprightness, it must have been given to
him as the head of the human family. The fourth commandment bases all its
authority upon this original mandate of the Creator, and must, therefore,
be in substance what God commanded to Adam and Eve as the representatives
The patriarchs could not possibly have been ignorant of the
facts and the obligation which the fourth commandment shows to have
originated in the beginning, for Adam was present with them for a period
equal to more than half the Christian dispensation. Those, therefore, who
walked with God in the observance of his commandments did certainly hallow
The observers of the seventh day must therefore include the
ancient godly patriarchs, and none will deny that they include also the
prophets and the apostles. Indeed, the entire church of God embraced
within the records of inspiration were Sabbath-keepers. To this number
must be added the Son of God.
What a history, therefore, has the
Sabbath of the Lord! It was instituted in Paradise, honored by several
miracles each week for the space of forty years, proclaimed by the great
Lawgiver from Sinai, observed by the Creator, the patriarchs, the
prophets, the apostles, and the Son of God! It constitutes the very heart
of the law of God, and so long as that law endures, so long shall the
authority of this sacred institution stand fast.
Such being the record of the seventh day, it may well be
asked, How came it to pass that this day has been abased to the dust, and
another day elevated to its sacred honors? The Scriptures nowhere
attribute this work to the Son of God. They do, however, predict the great
apostasy in the Christian church, and that the little horn, or man of sin,
the lawless one, should think to change times and laws.
It is the object of the present volume to show, 1. The Bible
record of the Sabbath; 2. The record of the Sabbath in secular history; 3.
The record of the Sunday festival, and of the several steps by which it
has usurped the place of the ancient Sabbath.
The writer has attempted to ascertain the exact truth in the
case by consulting the original authorities as far as it has been possible
to gain access to them. The margin will show to whom he is mainly indebted
for the facts presented in this work, though it indicates only a very
small part of the works consulted. He has given the exact words of the
historians, and has endeavored, conscientiously, to present them in such a
light as to do justice to the authors quoted.
It is not the fault of the writer that the history of the
Sunday festival presents such an array of frauds and of iniquities in its
support. These are, in the nature of the case, essential to its very
existence, for the claim of a usurper is necessarily based in fraud. The
responsibility for these rests with those who dare commit or uphold such
acts. The ancient Sabbath of the Lord has never needed help of this kind,
and never has its record been stained by fraud or falsehood.
Creek, Mich., Nov. 18,1873 J. N. A.