The Review and Herald

883/1902

June 1, 1897

Cooking on the Sabbath

EGW

“What Shall We Have for Sabbath Dinner?” is the heading of an article in a recent Review. The question is asked, “What shall we have for our Sabbath dinner? Good housewives, can't you tell us?” We refer all who read this article to the law of God, spoken in awful grandeur from Mount Sinai: “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days shalt thou labor, 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: 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.” This is the precept of Jehovah. RH June 1, 1897, par. 1

The Sabbath bears the sanctity of Jehovah. Through Isaiah the Lord has spoken: “If thou turn away thy foot from the Sabbath, from doing thy pleasure on my holy day; and call the Sabbath a delight, the holy of the Lord, honorable; and shalt honor him, not doing thine own ways, nor finding thine own pleasure, nor speaking thine own words: then shalt thou delight thyself in the Lord; and I will cause thee to ride upon the high places of the earth, and feed thee with the heritage of Jacob thy father: for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it.” RH June 1, 1897, par. 2

Jesus said: “Verily, verily, I say unto you, Ye seek me, not because ye saw the miracles, but because ye did eat of the loaves, and were filled. Labor not for the meat which perisheth, but for that meat which endureth unto everlasting life, which the Son of Man shall give unto you: for him hath God the Father sealed.” “They said therefore unto him, What sign showest thou then, that we may see, and believe thee? what dost thou work? Our fathers did eat manna in the desert; as it is written, He gave them bread from heaven to eat. Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Moses gave you not that bread from heaven; but my Father giveth you the true bread from heaven. For the bread of God is he which cometh down from heaven, and giveth life unto the world. Then said they unto him, Lord, evermore give us this bread. And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life; he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst.” RH June 1, 1897, par. 3

It is far more essential for all who claim to believe on Jesus Christ to understand by experience what this scripture means, than to be in such perplexity as to what shall be cooked on the Sabbath to be placed on our tables. It is of far greater consequence for us to know what is our spiritual nourishment. “Then said Jesus unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of Man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you. Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day. For my flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed. He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me, and I in him. As the living Father hath sent me, and I live by the Father: so he that eateth me, even he shall live by me. This is that bread which came down from heaven: not as your fathers did eat manna, and are dead: he that eateth of this bread shall live forever.” RH June 1, 1897, par. 4

“My flesh,” says Christ, “I will give for the life of the world.” He tells us that we have no life unless we eat his flesh and drink his blood. He could not possibly mean temporal eating and drinking. Christ made this statement over and over again, because the spiritual life of the world depended upon their understanding his words and doing them. He took no apparent notice because those who heard him were offended, but repeated his lesson over and over again. RH June 1, 1897, par. 5

All who will consult their Bibles will know, “What saith the Lord?” “And it came to pass, that on the sixth day they gathered twice as much bread, two omers for one man; and all the rulers of the congregation came and told Moses. And he said unto them, This is that which the Lord hath said, Tomorrow is the rest of the holy Sabbath unto the Lord: bake that which ye will bake today, and seethe that ye will seethe; and that which remaineth over lay up for you to be kept until the morning.” “And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying, Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, Concerning the feasts of the Lord, which ye shall proclaim to be holy convocations, even these are my feasts. Six days shall work be done: but the seventh day is the Sabbath of rest, an holy convocation; ye shall do no work therein: it is the Sabbath of the Lord in all your dwellings.” “And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying, Speak thou also unto the children of Israel, saying, Verily my Sabbaths ye shall keep: for it is a sign between me and you throughout your generations; that ye may know that I am the Lord that doth sanctify you. Ye shall keep the Sabbath therefore; for it is holy unto you: every one that defileth it shall surely be put to death: for whosoever doeth any work therein, that soul shall be cut off from among his people. Six days may work be done; but in the seventh is the Sabbath of rest, holy to the Lord: whosoever doeth any work in the Sabbath day, he shall surely be put to death. Wherefore the children of Israel shall keep the Sabbath, to observe the Sabbath throughout their generations, for a perpetual covenant. It is a sign between me and the children of Israel forever: for in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, and on the seventh day he rested and was refreshed.” RH June 1, 1897, par. 6

There is a way of quoting Scripture—the words that Christ considered of so much consequence that death was the penalty of transgression—so as to pervert it. Should we not handle the words of Christ with sacredness? It was said, in the article mentioned, “There are numerous victims, too, of such a regimen who can say, as did certain murmurers of old, and with far more reason, ‘Our soul loatheth this.’” This is mixing up the restrictions of the plain, “Thus saith thy Redeemer,” with the murmuring of the children of Israel in loathing the light bread which was angels’ food. “Persons inclined to doubt the universal application of those ancient laws, still scruple to cook food on Sabbath, but merely rewarm what has been previously cooked; though one might question why there is more offense in baking or boiling what has been prepared beforehand than in rebaking, reboiling, or restewing what has been already cooked.” Did the writer take the word of God just as it reads? The Lord has said: “Tomorrow is the rest of the holy Sabbath unto the Lord; bake that which ye will bake today, and seethe that ye will seethe; and that which remaineth over lay up for you to be kept until the morning.” RH June 1, 1897, par. 7

That manna was given by a miracle of God. Please read this entire chapter. Who was the leader of the children of Israel?—Jesus Christ enshrouded in the pillar of cloud. Chapters thirteen, fourteen, fifteen, and sixteen of the book of Exodus give the history of the children of Israel. Chapter thirteen tells of the wonderful works of God in causing the Red Sea to stand up as a wall on one side, so that the waters should not overflow, and how a passage was made through the waters. Thus the whole of the vast army of more than a million people went safely over. The cloud that went before them rose high above them, and settled down as a wall of fire between them and the Egyptians; and not one of them perished. “And the angel of God, which went before the camp of Israel, removed and went behind them; and the pillar of the cloud went from before their face, and stood behind them: and it came between the camp of the Egyptians and the camp of Israel; and it was a cloud and darkness to them, but it gave light by night to these: so that the one came not near the other all the night. And Moses stretched out his hand over the sea; and the Lord caused the sea to go back by a strong east wind all that night, and made the sea dry land, and the waters were divided. And the children of Israel went into the midst of the sea upon the dry ground: and the waters were a wall unto them on their right hand, and on their left.” RH June 1, 1897, par. 8

Their Leader was a mighty general of armies. His angels, that do his bidding, walked on either side of the vast armies of Israel, and no harm could come to them. Israel was safe. Who would have supposed that Israel could ever murmur again? Then came the sacred song of triumph, led by Miriam. Moses did not hesitate to join in the sacred song with timbrels. But when the armies of Israel came to Marah, they found that they could not drink of the waters; for they were bitter. Then the people had an opportunity to express their belief in the Lord, their invisible leader, and in Moses his servant, their visible leader. Did they wait patiently, and see what the Lord would do with and for them as they called upon him for relief? “And the people murmured against Moses, saying, What shall we drink?” Why did they not consider the wondrous work of God, and say, The Lord hath shown himself mighty to deliver, and he will not let us die of thirst? But they murmured against God. Moses cried unto the Lord, and again the Lord heard him. He showed Moses a tree which, when he had cast into the waters, the waters were made sweet. “There he made for them a statute and an ordinance, and there he proved them, and said, If thou wilt diligently harken to the voice of the Lord thy God, and wilt do that which is right in his sight, and wilt give ear to his commandments, and keep his statutes, I will put none of these diseases upon thee, which I have brought upon the Egyptians: for I am the Lord that healeth thee. And they came to Elim, where there were twelve wells of water, and threescore and ten palm-trees: and they encamped there by the water.” RH June 1, 1897, par. 9

Thus a loving, gracious, heavenly Leader was guiding the travels of the children of Israel. “And they took their journey from Elim, and all the congregation of the children of Israel came unto the wilderness of Sin, which is between Elim and Sinai, on the fifteenth day of the second month after their departing out of the land of Egypt. And the whole congregation of the children of Israel murmured against Moses and Aaron in the wilderness: and the children of Israel said unto them, Would to God we had died by the hand of the Lord in the land of Egypt, when we sat by the flesh-pots, and when we did eat bread to the full; for ye have brought us forth into this wilderness, to kill this whole assembly with hunger.” RH June 1, 1897, par. 10

O why were the children of Israel so faithless? How wondrously the Lord had worked for them, that they should not die! He had called his armies from heaven to fight in their behalf, and gained for them a glorious victory, and yet how little faith and confidence they had under the proving of God! He gave them his ordinance, a statute which he would never fail to keep, yet at the first trial, they complained and murmured against their leaders. Their store of corn was nearly exhausted, and there was no apparent prospect of procuring more. The Lord knew what he would do, but he would try their faith to see if they would take the words of assurance that he had given them of his merciful protection and care. He was educating his people to have faith in him. Their complaints against the servants of God, who were bearing responsibilities and heavy burdens in the work, were against God in their work. RH June 1, 1897, par. 11

(Concluded next week.)