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    August 24, 1888

    “The Apostles and the First Day of the Week” The Signs of the Times, 14, 33.

    E. J. Waggoner

    In an article in these columns week before last, it was clearly shown that the seventh day is the true and abiding Sabbath of the Scriptures; nevertheless, the existence of Sunday-keeping in the church, and the persistent claim which is made by many that the apostles sacredly observed Sunday, seem to demand a brief examination of the passages which mention that day, since if there were any sacredness attached to the day, it would there be at least intimated. The argument must, as a matter of course, be negative.SITI August 24, 1888, page 512.16

    Our task is not very great, for the first day of the week is mentioned only eight times in the New Testament, and six of these instances of its occurrence have reference to a single first day,-the day on which Christ rose from the tomb. These six texts are Matthew 28:1; Mark 16:2, 9; Luke 24:1; John 20:1, 19. They read in order as follows:-SITI August 24, 1888, page 512.17

    “In the end of the Sabbath, as it began to dawn toward the first day of the week, came Mary Magdalene and the other Mary to see the sepulchre.” Matthew 28:1.SITI August 24, 1888, page 512.18

    “And when the Sabbath was past, Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James, and Salome, had bought sweet spices, that they might come and anoint him. And very early in the morning the first day of the week, they came unto the sepulchre at the rising of the sun.” Mark 16:1, 2.SITI August 24, 1888, page 512.19

    “Now when Jesus was risen early the first day of the week, he appeared first to Mary Magdalene, out of whom he had cast seven devils.” Mark 16:9.SITI August 24, 1888, page 512.20

    “Now upon the first day of the week, very early in the morning, they came unto the sepulcher, bringing the spices which they had prepared, and certain others with them.” Luke 24:1.SITI August 24, 1888, page 512.21

    “The first day of the week cometh Mary Magdalene early, when it was yet dark, unto the sepulcher, and seeth the stone taken away from the sepulcher.” John 20:1.SITI August 24, 1888, page 512.22

    “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.” John 20:19.SITI August 24, 1888, page 512.23

    In none of these texts is there the least hint that the day was sacred, or was henceforth to be considered so. They simply state that Jesus met with certain of his disciples on the day of his resurrection. Those incidents are mentioned to show that Christ did really rise from the dead the third day as he had said. That he should show himself at once to his disciples, was the most natural thing in the world, in order to relieve their sorrow. The meeting referred to in John 20:19 was not a religious meeting, not a gathering for prayer, or to celebrate the resurrection, but simply such a meeting as Jesus had with Mary in the garden, with the other women, and with Peter, being one of the “many infallible proofs” of his resurrection. That this is so is evident from the fact that the eleven had one common abode (Acts 1:13), and that just before Jesus came into the room where they were, the two disciples to whom Jesus appeared “as they walked, and went into the country,” had returned and told the eleven that Jesus was risen, but their story was not believed. Mark 16:12, 13. Moreover, when Jesus himself appeared unto them, they were sitting at meat, and he “upbraided them with their unbelief and harness of heart, because they believed not them which had seen him after he was risen.” Mark 16:14. They could not have celebrated his resurrection when they did not believe that he had risen. A comparison of Acts 1:13 with Mark 16:14, and Luke 24:36-42, is sufficient to show that when Jesus met with his disciples on the evening of the day of his resurrection, they were simply eating their supper at home and did not believe that he had risen.SITI August 24, 1888, page 512.24

    When Jesus met with them he did not tell them that thenceforth they must observe the first day of the week in honor of his resurrection, nor did he pronounce any blessing on that day. In short, he made no reference whatever to the day. To the disciples he gave the salutation of peace, saying, “Peace be unto you,” and he breathed on them, and said, “Receive ye the Holy Ghost;” but that affected the disciples, and not the day. Thus we see that in connection with the resurrection of Jesus there is not the remotest hint of Sunday sacredness.SITI August 24, 1888, page 512.25

    The next reference to the first day of the week is in Acts 20:7, and there we find that a meeting was held on that day. And here one thing may be noted, namely, that this is the only direct mention in the New Testament of a religious meeting on the first day of the week. If there were the record of fifty meetings on that day, however, that would not in the least affect its standing, for meetings were held every day in the week. The New Testament contains an account of many meetings held on the Sabbath, but that is no reason why the Sabbath should be kept. The Sabbath stands on a different foundation than that, even the unchanging word of God.SITI August 24, 1888, page 512.26

    But what of this one meeting on the first day of the week. We note first that it was in the night, for “there were many lights in the upper chamber, where they were gathered together” (verse 8); and Paul preached until midnight (verse 7), and then, after a brief intermission, until break of day, when he departed. Verse 11. But every day, according to the Bible method of reckoning time, ends at the setting of the sun. (See Genesis 1:5, 8, 13, 19, 23, 31; Leviticus 23:32; Mark 1:32). Therefore since this meeting at Troas was in the dark part of the first day of the week, it could not have been at the close of that day, but must have been at the beginning, corresponding to what is popularly designated as “Saturday night.”SITI August 24, 1888, page 512.27

    Now note what immediately followed that Saturday night meeting. As soon as it was break of day, on Sunday morning, Paul’s companions went to the ship, and resumed their journey to Jerusalem, while Paul himself chose to walk across the country and join the ship’s company at Assos. The distance from Troas to Assos was about sixty miles by water, but only nineteen by land, so that Paul could easily reach that place before the ship did. That this trip was taken on the first day of the week is so evident that few, if any, commentators suggest any different view. The Scriptures need no indorsement from men; but it may help some minds to know that this view of the text is not a peculiar one. “Coneybeare and Howson’s Life of Paul” says of this trip of Paul’s:-SITI August 24, 1888, page 512.28

    “Strength and peace were surely sought and obtained by the apostle from the Redeemer as he pursued his lonely road that Sunday afternoon in spring among the oak woods and the streams of Ida.”-Chap. 20, paragraph 11.SITI August 24, 1888, page 512.29

    So far, then, as the example of the apostles goes, Sunday is to be used in secular employment.SITI August 24, 1888, page 512.30

    One more text completes the list of references to the first day. It is 1 Corinthians 16:2, and, together with the preceding verse, reads as follows:-SITI August 24, 1888, page 512.31

    “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.”SITI August 24, 1888, page 512.32

    A literal rendering of this would be, “Let each one of you lay by himself at home, treasuring up in store, as God hath prospered him,” and that Paul’s injunction has reference to private stores and not to public collections is evident from the language, as well as from what the apostle wrote in his second epistle, in which he says: “I thought it necessary to exhort the brethren, that they would go before unto you, and make up before hand your bounty, whereof ye had notice before, that the same might be ready, as a matter of bounty, and not as of covetousness.” 2 Corinthians 9:5. But if their offerings had been cast into the collection box, and so kept all together in the treasury of the church, there would have been no need of sending the brethren ahead to make up beforehand their bounty.SITI August 24, 1888, page 512.33

    These are all the texts that speak of the first day of the week, and not one of them intimates that it was in any sense a sacred day. Indeed, at the time the New Testament was written, no one in the world had ever heard of “the day of the sun” being kept as a sacred day. The heathen observed it only as a wild festival day.SITI August 24, 1888, page 512.34

    But throughout the New Testament the seventh day of the week is called the Sabbath-the same title that is given to it in the commandment. This is not because the New Testament writers were Jews, for they did not write as Jews, but as men inspired by the Holy Spirit. They were Christians, writing, under guidance of the Spirit of God, for the comfort, encouragement, and instruction of Christians until the end of time. If the seventh day were not the Sabbath for Christians and for all men, then the Holy Spirit would not have given it that name. But the truth is, as shown before, that the seventh day is the Sabbath-made so by the unchangeable act of the Creator-and no other day can ever be the Sabbath. And so we see that Dr. Scott and the Christian at Work told the exact truth when they said that we must go to later than apostolic times to find Sunday observance, and that it came in gradually and silently. But for everything that came into the church after the days of Christ, the church is indebted to paganism. W.SITI August 24, 1888, page 512.35

    “The Commentary. The Third Angel’s Message” The Signs of the Times, 14, 33.

    E. J. Waggoner

    (Lesson 10, Sabbath, September 8.)

    1. What warning does the Lord send to the world, against the worship of the beast and his image?SITI August 24, 1888, page 522.1

    “And the third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand, the same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb; and the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever; and they have no rest day nor night, who worship the beast and his image, and whosoever receiveth the mark of his name.” Revelation 14:9-11.SITI August 24, 1888, page 522.2

    2. How widely was the first message of this chapter announced?SITI August 24, 1888, page 522.3

    “And I saw another angel fly in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach unto them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people.” Verse 6.SITI August 24, 1888, page 522.4

    3. What is said of the second?-It followed. Verse 8.SITI August 24, 1888, page 522.5

    4. And what is said of the third?-The third angel followed them. Verse 9.SITI August 24, 1888, page 522.6

    5. If, then, the first one went to every nation and kindred and tongue and people, and the third one follows, what must be the extent to which the Third Angel’s Message will go?SITI August 24, 1888, page 522.7

    6. What does the first angel have to preach?SITI August 24, 1888, page 522.8

    “And I saw another angel fly in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach unto them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people.” Verse 6.SITI August 24, 1888, page 522.9

    7. What does this angel proclaim?-The hour of God’s judgment is come. Verse 7.SITI August 24, 1888, page 522.10

    8. What does he call upon all people to do?—“Worship him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters.SITI August 24, 1888, page 522.11

    9. What results from the rejection of this message?SITI August 24, 1888, page 522.12

    “And there followed another angel, saying, Babylon is fallen, is fallen, that great city, because she made all nations drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication.” Verse 8.SITI August 24, 1888, page 522.13

    10. What came of the first falling away from the everlasting gospel?-“That man of sin,” “the mystery of iniquity,” “The beast.2 Thessalonians 2:2-8; Daniel 7:11; Revelation 19:19, 20.SITI August 24, 1888, page 522.14

    11. What comes of this second falling away from the everlasting gospel?-“The image of the beast,” and the enforced worship of the beast.SITI August 24, 1888, page 522.15

    12. When men refuse to worship him that made heaven and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of water, what are they led to do?-To worship the beast and his image. Revelation 13:12, 13.SITI August 24, 1888, page 522.16

    13. What then do the three messages of Revelation 14:6-12 form?-One threefold message rather than three distinct messages. See note.SITI August 24, 1888, page 522.17

    14. When the first in order tells men that the hour of God’s judgment is come, what does the third tell them to do, to be prepared for the judgment?SITI August 24, 1888, page 522.18

    “Here is the patience of the saints; here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus.” Verse 12.SITI August 24, 1888, page 522.19

    15. What is to be the rule in the judgment?SITI August 24, 1888, page 522.20

    “For as many as have sinned without law shall also perish without law; and as many as have sinned in the law shall be judged by the law.” “In the day when God shall judge the secrets of men by Jesus Christ according to my gospel.” Romans 2:12, 16.SITI August 24, 1888, page 522.21

    16. When the first angel calls upon all men to worship Him that made heaven and earth, etc., what does the third tell them to do that their worship may be acceptable to Him, and also that they may avoid the worship of the beast and his image?SITI August 24, 1888, page 522.22

    “Here is the patience of the saints; here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus.” Revelation 14:12.SITI August 24, 1888, page 522.23

    17. Is a man’s worship acceptable to God if he does not keep the commandments of God?SITI August 24, 1888, page 522.24

    “He that turneth away his ear from hearing the law, even his prayer shall be abomination.” Proverbs 28:9.SITI August 24, 1888, page 522.25

    18. Is it possible to keep the commandments of God and without the faith of Jesus?SITI August 24, 1888, page 522.26

    “For whatsoever is not of faith is sin.” Romans 14:23, last part.SITI August 24, 1888, page 522.27

    19. Is there any part of the commandments of God that points especially to Him that made heaven and earth?SITI August 24, 1888, page 522.28

    “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 manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates; 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.” Exodus 20:8-11.SITI August 24, 1888, page 522.29

    20. Therefore in the time of the preaching of the Third Angel’s Message, what will be done?-Every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people will be called upon particularly to keep the fourth commandment.SITI August 24, 1888, page 523.1

    21. What day is the Sabbath of the Lord?SITI August 24, 1888, page 523.2

    “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 manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates.” Exodus 20:10.SITI August 24, 1888, page 523.3

    22. Of what is it a sign?SITI August 24, 1888, page 523.4

    “A sign... that ye may know that I am the Lord your God.” Ezekiel 20:30.SITI August 24, 1888, page 523.5

    23. Why is it such a sign?SITI August 24, 1888, page 523.6

    “For because in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, and on the seventh day he rested, and was refreshed.” Exodus 31:17.SITI August 24, 1888, page 523.7

    24. Then of what is the keeping of the seventh day a sign?—It is a sign that those who do so worship the true God-“him that made heaven and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters.SITI August 24, 1888, page 523.8

    25. What is the one great question under the Third Angel’s Message?-Whether men will worship Him that made heaven and earth, or worship the beast and his image?SITI August 24, 1888, page 523.9

    26. What is the keeping of the seventh day-the Sabbath of the Lord?-It is the God-given sign that those who do so are worshipers of Him that made heaven and earth.SITI August 24, 1888, page 523.10

    27. Therefore what is the inevitable conclusion?-That the keeping of the Sabbath of the Lord-the seventh day-is the one point above every other that distinguishes the worshipers of Him that made heaven and earth from the worshipers of the beast and his image.SITI August 24, 1888, page 523.11


    The word rendered “followed,” in Revelation 14:8, 9 is obsouotheo, which means, in constructions like that in this text, “to go with.” Liddel and Scott render the word thus: “To follow one, go after, or with him.” Robinson says: “To follow, to go with, to accompany anyone.” It is the same word that is used in Mark 5:21: “And Jesus went with him; and much people followed him, and thronged him.” It is also used of the redeemed one hundred and forty-four thousand, where it is said: “These are they which follow the Lamb withersoever he goeth.” Revelation 14:1. In both these places it is evident that of going together in company with. So in 1 Corinthians 10:4, where we read of the children of Israel that they drank of the spiritual Rock that followed them,” the word “followed” is translated from the same Greek word, and the margin has it, “went with them.” From this we learn that the idea in Revelation 14:8, 9 is not simply that the second and third angels followed the first in point of time, but that they were with it. Therefore the second and third messages must necessarily be as widespread as the first. As a matter of fact, they are now inseparable; it is impossible properly to preach one without preaching the other two.SITI August 24, 1888, page 523.12

    QUESTION 13.-It is the rejection of the first message that causes the falling away referred to in the second message. From this falling away the image of the beast and his worship are developed. And the third message warns against the worship of the beast and his image. From this it is evident that these three messages are inseparably connected, and form the threefold message.SITI August 24, 1888, page 523.13

    AGAIN: The first message calls upon all men to “worship Him that made heaven and earth,” etc. Those who refuse to do this are led to worship the beast and his image. The third angel follows, warning against the worship of the beast and his image, and calls upon all men to keep the commandments of God and the faith of Jesus. The fourth commandment points directly to the worship of Him who made heaven and earth; and this is the very thing which the first message calls upon men to do. Therefore it is certain that these three messages are but one threefold message. They are three only in the order of their rise. But having risen, they go on together and are inseparable.SITI August 24, 1888, page 523.14

    “Back Page” The Signs of the Times, 14, 33.

    E. J. Waggoner

    Camp-meetings are of late coming largely in favor again. At the last meeting of the Baptist ministers of San Francisco and Oakland, a committee was appointed to inquire into the feasibility of holding an annual camp-meeting in Oakland.SITI August 24, 1888, page 544.1

    The settlers of antelope Valley, Los Angeles County, Cal., have made an offer of 300 acres of land to the Boards of the Methodist Episcopal Church and the M. E. Church South, as a location for their proposed homes for infirm and sick ministers.SITI August 24, 1888, page 544.2

    President Davis, of the University of California, has proposed that the various denominations of the State should each establish a home at the University for the students of their faith, and thus look after their social and religious interests. The proposition has been favorably received, and prominent Methodist clergymen have already visited Berkeley to look for a desirable site for their denominational home.SITI August 24, 1888, page 544.3

    We learn from an exchange that the Synod of the Reformed Presbyterian Church, and its recent session in Pittsburgh, Penn., directed the church authorities to discipline members who advertise their business in the secular Sunday newspapers. We do not learn, however, that any objection was expressed to their having their advertisements appeared in the Monday morning papers, all the work of which is done on Sunday.SITI August 24, 1888, page 544.4

    Subscriptions for the SIGNS OF THE TIMES and the American Sentinel are now coming in faster than one man can set up the names and arranged the list. This is what we like. We find men enough to take care of the list, if our friends will only send in their subscriptions, and those of their friends and neighbors. Is just as easy for us to write for twenty-five thousand subscribers, and, in fact, it easier. Try us and see.SITI August 24, 1888, page 544.5

    In a public address at the recent Spiritualist camp-meeting in Oakland, William Emmette Coleman said that in his opinion probably ninety-nine one-hundredths of the so-called materialization as were fraudulent. A regular correspondent of the Golden Gate says that he should concur on the opinion, and honor him for the utterance, if he had said ninety-five per cent. And Hon. Amos Adams, one of the leading Spiritualists of California, and till recently the president of the State Association, speaks as follows of the materialization séances at the Onset Bay camp-meeting:-SITI August 24, 1888, page 544.6

    “How in the light of reason and common sense these poor, deluded people can reconcile the fact that the child they laid away only weighing from thirty to fifty pounds, could, in the space of one short year, swell into such vast proportions, and weigh at least two hundred pounds, none but those who go to séances knowing they will not be deceived can answer. We believe we have seen people at these séances, who, if a bag of barley were placed at the aperture, with a potato on it for a head, would walk up and embrace it, and then get up in the next fact meeting and state that their long, long ago grandfather, who came in this country in 1600, materialize for them last night at Mrs. Soganboss’s séance; and it was impossible for them to be deceived, because he was recognized by a scar on his forehead, caused by a wound made by a spear, when his long-ago grandfather was fighting the battles of William the Conqueror; ... the ... of this ‘fact’ would be greeted with wild applause!”SITI August 24, 1888, page 544.7

    This, as told by the Spiritualists themselves, does not prove that there are no genuine Spiritualist manifestations, but simply that “materialization” affords the best opportunity for fraud. After all, we do not see why it should be thought a strange thing for mediums to practice fraud, when they are in constant communication with, and under the control of, lying spirits.SITI August 24, 1888, page 544.8

    The pastor of one of the leading Baptist Churches in Cleveland, a Doctor Dowling, has recently renounced close communion, and has given a general invitation for all who wish to join in celebrating the Lord’s Supper. The Michigan Christian Advocate comments on this action as follows:-SITI August 24, 1888, page 544.9

    “Now that the brother has broken away from one species of bigotry, let us hope that we may get go a step further and concede that dipping, like close communion, is not necessarily a condition of thoroughly devout Christianity.”SITI August 24, 1888, page 544.10

    We see no reason why we should not, and indeed he must do so if he is consistent in his course. And then when he has decided that baptism is not necesssarily a condition of Christianity, he may well conclude that repentance and conversion are likewise the necessary. And when those old-fashioned things no longer stand the way, what wonderful it then spent (in numbers) if these the church may be expected to make.SITI August 24, 1888, page 544.11

    A later dispatched brings the news that doctor Dowling has withdrawn from his church and from the Baptist denomination. The probability is that as he is a very popular man, the church will not accept his resignation, and will follow him out of the denomination.SITI August 24, 1888, page 544.12

    The gentleman whose question we answer on another page, in his letter to us expresses his appreciation of the SIGNS OF THE TIMES in the following manner:-SITI August 24, 1888, page 544.13

    “I like the paper because it gives so much could truth, not making man’s thoughts to prominent [which is] a very common fault in the religious journals to-day. Then I like it because while discussing the debatable questions of the day in a friendly spirit, it seeks no higher authority than God’s word.”SITI August 24, 1888, page 544.14

    We do not wish for any higher recommendation for the paper than this. To uphold the word of God as the supreme and sole authority in all matters of faith in duty, is the one object of the SIGNS OF THE TIMES. We know of no higher authority than the Bible. And when we say that, we mean the Bible as interpreted by the Bible, and not in some man’s opinion. There is no man so good or so learned that his opinion is worth anything if it conflicts with the plain teaching of Scripture.SITI August 24, 1888, page 544.15

    The New York Evangelist notes the fact that the session of the Central Presbyterian Church, Rochester, N.Y., is energetically protesting against the Sunday “desecration” that is carried on in its city, and says that its action is to be followed by the other churches. It then adds: “Only a prompt, firm, and united stand will make head against present inroads upon the Sabbath [by which it means Sunday] and other of our cherished American institutions.”SITI August 24, 1888, page 544.16

    Calling Sunday an “American institution” is far better than calling it the Christian Sabbath or the Lord’s day; but we protest against it. We claim an interest in all American institutions, but we know none in Sunday. Sunday is a pagan institution, and nothing else can be made of it, whatever it may be called.SITI August 24, 1888, page 544.17

    It is said to be Mr. Gladstone’s opinion that Rome, meaning the Roman Catholic Church, would not have lasted as long as she has if it were not for the large amount of faith and hope and charity to be found within her pale. Is that the reason why Confucianism, Buddhism, Mohammedanism, and other forms of paganism, have lasted so long? The custom of measuring a religious organization by its claim or by the length of time it has existed, is a most pernicious one. That standard of measurement would prove paganism to be the only true religion.SITI August 24, 1888, page 544.18

    Our readers will fully understand, without any comments from us, the bearing of such action as is noted in the following item from the San Francisco Chronicle of the 29th inst.:-SITI August 24, 1888, page 544.19

    “A Saturday half-holiday is growing rapidly in favor. In the East not only the stores and shops are closing at Saturday noon, but the factories and foundries also, and the workmen here are going to follow suit, if possible. It looks as though the half-holiday is destined to be as much an occasion of secular observance as is Sunday.”SITI August 24, 1888, page 544.20

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