80 Facts About Sunday Keeping

The author of this pamphlet kept Saturday for twenty-eight years, hence knows of what he writes. The tract is put in brief statements for careful study with Bible in hand. Each reference should be looked up.

1. The Old Testament, as a rule of life, has passed away. Heb. viii. 13.

2. Jesus introduced a New Testament, or Covenant. Luke xxii. 19, 20.

3. The New Covenant is better than the old one. Heb. viii. 6.

4. It is a ” new way.” Heb. x. 20.

5. The new is not to be patched onto the old. Mark ii. 22.

6. This is the dispensation of grace, not of law. John i. 17; Eph. hi. 2.

7. We are not under the law of the Old Testament. Gal. iii. 19-25.

8. But we live under “the law of liberty.” Jas. ii. 12 ; Gal. v. 13, 14.

9. Under the Gospel, we are no longer as hired “servants,” but are “sons,” Gal. iv. 1-7, “the household of God,” Eph. ii. 19; “friends,” John xv. 15.

10. Christians are not under obligations to keep any of the holy days of the Old Testament. Col. ii. 14-17 ; Gal. iv. 10, 11, 21.

11. Some Jewish Christians still thought it necessary to observe the old law with regard to the eating of certain meats and observing the Jewish Sabbath and the other holy days. The Gentile Christian disregarded both the distinction in meats and the holy days. Paul says both were matters of indifference which each man could decide for himself. Rom. xiv. 1-6. That this does include the Jewish Sabbath is shown by the fact that Paul is speaking of the ten commandments. Read Rom. xiii. 8-xiv. 1-6. Also Col. ii. 14-16. Hence it is the privilege of each one to regard or disregard those old holy days and the distinctions in meats. Rom. xiv. 1-6.

12. Under the Old Covenant there were several memorial days, as the Sabbath, the Passover, Pentecost, etc., all of which passed away with that covenant. Col. ii. 14-17.

13. So we would expect that under the New Covenant there would be new memorial days appropriate to the new order of things, and observed for new reasons. Matt. ix. 15-17.

14. Jesus only “began ” the work of teaching the Gospel, and instructing the disciples. Acts i. 1, 2 ; John xvi. 12.

15. After the ascension the Holy Spirit was to finish teaching them what before they could not understand. John xvi. 12, 13.

Certainly they could not understand about the resurrection day till after Christ had risen. Luke xxiv. 25-27. Ten years later even Peter had failed to understand that the distinctions of the Jewish law had passed away. Read Acts x., especially verse 28. Hence, necessarily the increasing regard for the day of the resurrection was a natural growth in the new Church. It was twenty years before circumcision was officially discarded. Acts xv.

16. They were not prepared to teach the Church till this Spirit gave them power at Pentecost. Luke xxiv. 49; Acts i. 4, 5; ii. 1-4.

17. “We are to hear the apostles the same as Jesus Himself. Luke x. 16.

18. What they ” write are the commandments of the Lord.” 1 Cor. xiv. 37.

19. They were authorized by the Holy Ghost to deliver the decrees and ordinances for the Church to keep. Acts xv. 28; xvi. 4 ; 1 Cor. xi. 2.

20. Apostolical example in matters of faith and doctrine is to be followed. 1 Cor. xi. 1; 2 Thess. iii. 7-9; Heb. xiii. 7.

21. A memorial day for the Gospel should commemorate the greatest event of the gospel age. “What was that? The resurrection, certainly.

22. Christ’s life alone did not, and could not, save a soul.

23. His holy teachings could not save any one.

24. All His miracles could not wash away one sin.

25. Had He died, but never risen again, the world would have been lost. 1 Cor. xv. 17,18.

26. The salvation, then, of a lost world all hinged upon one infinitely important fact—His resurrection from the power of death. Kom. i. 4.

27. Jesus Himself pointed to His resurrection as the test of His divinity. John ii. 18-21; Matt. xii. 38-40.

28. His enemies all understood this and tried to defeat it. Matt. xxvii. 63, 64.

29. It was His resurrection which declared Him to be the Son of God, Kom. i. 4, the judge of the world, Acts xvii. 31; and secured our salvation. 1 Cor. xv. 17, 18.

30. We may well be assured that all the angels in heaven and all the devils in hell watched for that event with intent anxiety.

31. But this stupendous event, in God’s wise arrangement, occurred on Sunday. Mark xvi. 9.

32. On that day the power of death and hell was broken. Rev. i. 18.

33. On that day He first appeared alive to His disciples. Mark xvi. 9.

34. On Sunday He met with them repeatedly and at different places. Mark xvi. 9-14; Matt. xxviii. 8-10; Luke xxiv. 34; John xx. 19-23, etc.

35. On this day He pronounced peace upon them. John xx. 19.

36. On that day He gave them the Holy Ghost. John xx. 22.

37. On this day He first commissioned them to preach the Gospel to all the world. John xx. 21 with Mark xvi. 9-15.

38. On that day He gave them power over His Church. John xx. 23.

39. On that day Jesus ascended to His Father. John xx. 17; Eph. i. 20.

40. On this day many of the dead saints arose. Matt, xxvii. 51-53.

41. On this day the glad tidings of the risen Christ was first preached. Luke xxiv. 34.

42. On that Sunday Jesus opened their minds to understand the Scriptures. Luke xxiv. 27, 45.

43. On this day the crowning event occurred which made Jesus a complete Saviour. Kom. i. 4.

44. Here Sunday became the day of joy and gladness to His people. John xx. 20.

45. The resurrection of Christ on Sunday made Him the head stone of the corner. Ps. cxviii. 22; Acts iv. 10, 11; Eph. i. 20-22.

46. It was predicted that this day was to be a day of joy to the Church. Ps. cxviii. 22-24. And it has been such ever since.

47. No other day in the week could have become the memorial day of the risen Christ and His rejoicing Church. Think over all the days of the week. What occurred on Monday to mark it above others? or on Tuesday? Wednesday? Thursday came the betrayal and Gethsemane; Friday, the trial and death of Christ; Saturday was the deepest day of gloom—the Son of God is dead! Surely not one of these days could be appropriate to commemorate the triumph of Christ and the new hope of the infant Church.

48. But with the dawn of Sunday morning what a glorious revolution in all this! An angel of glory descends from heaven, the grave opens, Christ arises, dead saints come forth, the divinity of Christ is demonstrated, salvation for a world is made sure, Satan’s doom is sealed, all the faith and hopes of the disciples suddenly revive, the first day of the new era, the new dispensation, has burst upon the world!

49. Necessarily, the hallowed memories of that glorious day immediately became the one theme of apostles, disciples and saints. Around it all their hopes clustered. Of it they argued, preached, prayed and sung. With it stood or fell their all. It needed no law or thunders of Sinai to compel them to remember it. It was enshrined in their hearts with their risen Lord. They could not forget it.

50. Here was the origin of the observance of “the Lord’s Day.” In all His life it was the one and only day that could become the memorial day of the new dispensation—new creation. That it did soon become such facts abundantly prove.

51. On the next return of the resurrection day Jesus again purposely met them. John xx. 26. Proof: “After three days,” Mark viii. 31, is the same as “the third day.” Matt. xvi. 21. So “after eight days” would be the same as “the eighth day,” Jewish reckoning, which would be the next Sunday.

52. The wonderful outpouring of the Holy Spirit on Pentecost, Acts ii., when the first converts to the risen Christ were gathered, was on Sunday. The law said positively that the Pentecost must come on ” the morrow after the seventh Sabbath.” Lev. xxiii. 15, 16. Hence it had to come on Sunday by God’s own appointment.

53. Pentecost! never could it be forgotten by the Church. Here was added a second reason why it became the memorial day of the gospel age.

54. Acts xx. 6-11 indicates clearly that the disciples held their meetings and communion on that day. Paul had been there seven days including the Jewish Sabbath (see verse 6), yet no meetings were held. Not a hint is given of any meeting on the Jewish Sabbath. It is not even mentioned.

55. But it is carefully stated that “upon the first day of the week the disciples came together.” Verse 7.

56. The object of their meeting is as clearly stated: it was “to break bread,”—the communion.

57. This shows that Sunday was the day on which they were accustomed to hold that sacred service.

58. There is not the slightest intimation that Paul called them together for a special meeting. On the contrary, the record plainly shows that he waited till they “came together ” in their accustomed place, at their accustomed time, and for their accustomed service. He then embraced the opportunity to preach to them.

59. The claim of the Adventists that this was Saturday night is fallacious. (1) This meeting was on ” the first day of the week,” and they “departed on the morrow ” (verse 7), which could not have been the same day. (2) Troas was a Roman town, under Roman rule, 1,000 miles from Jerusalem, where Roman time was used. (3) Luke addressed Acts to Theophilus (Acts i. 1), a Roman of Italy who used Roman time. (4) Even the apostles in their last writings used Roman time as John xx. 19 shows where Sunday evening is reckoned a part of “the first day.”

60. Hence Acts xx. shows apostolical example for meeting on Sunday and we are to follow them. 2 Thess. iii. 7-9.

61. 1 Cor. xvi. 1, 2 confirms this fact. Here is a direct command of an apostle to observe the first day of the week for a religious purpose—to give their contribution for the poor on that day.

62. The making of such sacrifices for the needy is an act of the most acceptable religious service to God. Phil. iv. 15-18.

63. The day on which this is to be done is specified and commanded, viz.: “the first day of the week.”

64. This command is not simply to one church, but to “all the churches of Galatia,” and to “all in every place.” Chap. i. 2, universal.

65. In the same letter Paul says to them emphatically, “The things that I write unto you are the ‘Commandments of the Lord.'” Chap. xiv. 37.

66. Here is a direct “commandment of the Lord” requiring a religious service on Sunday. Can Adventists show any command whatever for the Jewish Sabbath, after the resurrection? No, indeed.

67. Whether this was to be done at home or at church matters little. It implies that on that day they would be at leisure from other business so as to attend to this. There must have been a good reason why Sunday was thus named on which all the churches were to do this. What reason can Adventists give? None whatever. But we give the best and only reason that could have existed for it.—It was their day of rest and worship.

68. Kev. i. 10: “I was in the spirit on the Lord’s Day.” This is the resurrection day as may be abundantly proved. In not a single instance in all the Bible is this term ever applied to the seventh day.

69. Even Adventists never say “Lord’s Day” for the seventh day except in arguing on this text. They invariably call it ” The Sabbath.”

70. Every dictionary, lexicon, and encyclopedia defines “Lord’s Day” as the first day of the week. There must be good ground for so universal an agreement of all scholars and authorities.

71. All commentators of every school also say it was Sunday.

72. “Sabbath” was the term invariably used for the seventh day in all the Bible; but that is not the word here used.

73. “The Lord’s Day” is a new name never found before the resurrection.

74. If the new institution of the Gospel was to have a new memorial day, it must be designated by a new name, as is here done. If the new day had been called by the same name as the old day, “the Sabbath,” it would have made confusion.

75. Adventists quote Ex. xx. 10; Isa. lviii. 13; Mark ii. 28 to prove that the Sabbath is the Lord’s day. The answer is easy. (1) “Sabbath” is the word used in all these texts but not in Rev. i. 10. (2) All these texts were spoken before the cross; Rev. i. 10 after it. (3) The Jewish Sabbath was abolished at the cross. Col. ii. 16. Hence it could not be the Lord’s Day of our text, which was sixty years later.

76. The Greek word, kuriake, occurs in only one other place in the Bible, 1 Cor. xi. 20, ” The Lord’s Supper.” Beyond dispute, it here applies to the Lord Jesus. So it does in Rev. i. 10. It is His day, the day of His triumph at His resurrection.

77. “The Lord’s Day” proves that there is a sacred day in the gospel age as definitely as there was a sacred day in the Jewish age.

78. What settles this beyond reasonable doubt is the fact that immediately following the close of the New Testament, every Christian writer, who uses the term Lord’s Day, invariably and always uses it of the resurrection day, never once of the seventh day. For proof of this read the following pages.

79. The observance of Sunday as a memorial of the resurrection of Christ has been the most prominent ordinance of the Christian Church in all ages and nations and by all the different sects from the apostles down.

80. Finally, God’s blessing has attended the observance of the day as millions have testified. Its effects have always been good on the person, the family, the society, or the nation which has kept it. All experiences and history agree in this.

“We must recognize the fact that God’s providence in the history of His Church does teach something. It is a stubborn fact that from the birth of Christianity the chief services of the Gospel have been held on the day of the resurrection which has been universally in all the centuries recognized by the Church as the ” Lord’s Day.” The sincere purpose in all has always been, and still is, to honor Christ and commemorate His resurrection. If this day had been as hateful to Christ as it is to Adventists, would He have blessed this observance of the day as He always has? Please study this a little.

“Hastings’ Dictionary of the Bible,” Article “Lord’s Day,” says, “When Jesus uttered the cry, ‘It is finished,’ the Mosaic dispensation virtually passed away. His resurrection, ascension, and outpouring of the Holy Spirit were successive affirmations of the great fact, and the destruction of the temple made it plain to all but the blindest. But in the meantime nothing is more striking than the tender way in which the apostles and Christians of Jewish birth were weaned from the old religion. The dead leaves of Judaism fell off gradually. They were not rudely torn off by man. The new facts, the new dogmas, the new ordinances first established themselves, and then, little by little, the incompatibility of the old and the new was realized which necessarily issued in the casting off of the old.

“The old things of Judaism were made new in Christianity. This, however, was not accomplished by a deliberate substitution of one ordinance for another; but first the old ordinances were simply antiquated, and their experience matured under the influence of the Holy Spirit, proved that the positive institutions of the new religion more than fulfilled those of the old.” “Jesus enunciated the great truths of the Gospel, and left them to germinate and bear fruit through their own inherent power.” Lewis.

Source: Complete Testimony of the Early Fathers – D.M. Canright

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