American Sentinel, vol. 13

American Sentinel, Vol. 13


January 27, 1898

“Superfluous ‘Explanation’” American Sentinel 13, 4.

E. J. Waggoner

A thing that is plain cannot be explained, that is, it cannot be “made plain,” since it is so already. Thus: “John goes to school” is a simple statement of fact, and it cannot be made any plainer. All attempts to “explain” the statement would simply be aggregations of words which would either have no meaning at all, or else would serve bewilder the listener. The only possible result of any attempted explanation of such a simple proposition is to call the attention away from the fact stated. AMS January 27, 1898, page 52.1

The fourth commandment is composed of a series of just such simple statements of fact. After the commandment proper, “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy,” we have these statements: (1) The seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord thy God. (2) In six days the Lord made heaven and earth, etc. (3) He rested the seventh day. (4) Therefore He blessed the Sabbath day, and sanctified it. AMS January 27, 1898, page 52.2

These are as plain statements of fact as is the statement that “John goes to school,” or that “the sun shines.” They cannot be made any plainer. All that can properly be done with them is to believe theirs, since “the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it.” Every so-called “explanation” of the commandment is either a direct contradiction of it or else such a mass of verbiage as serves to confuse the unfortunate person who is persuaded to put confidence in it. If anyone knows where the fourth commandment is stated in plainer terms than in Exodus 20:8-11, we should be glad to have it shown to us. AMS January 27, 1898, page 52.3