The Review and Herald

889/1902

July 13, 1897

God's Holy Sabbath

EGW

God's holy Sabbath is not to be used to obtain worldly advantages. But with too many, the world is an idol. They place worldly principles and worldly advantages before the Lord God of Hosts. They worship money. Before the heavenly universe, before the worlds unfallen, and before their fellow men, they show that in their eyes, gain is godliness. They accept fables invented to turn men from truth and righteousness. By choosing the world and its attractions, they divorce themselves from God. RH July 13, 1897, par. 1

Satan presented the world and its advantages to Christ, saying, “All these things will I give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship me.” But divinity flashed through humanity, and Christ exclaimed, “Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.” RH July 13, 1897, par. 2

This response every true follower of the Lord will be compelled to make. Those who have in their foreheads the seal of the infinite God will regard the world and its attractions as subordinate to eternal interests. They will keep the way of the Lord, to do justice and judgment. Christ resisted the temptations of the enemy with the only weapon that the soldier of the cross of Christ can successfully use,—“It is written.” Where?—In the Old and New Testaments. With these words we are to defend ourselves and warn others, holding forth to them the word of life. RH July 13, 1897, par. 3

Many have never understood that Sunday is not the Sabbath of the fourth commandment. In his subtlety, Satan has covered up this fact, and has presented a common day as sacred, that the whole world may become guilty before God by transgression. Many are utterly ignorant that they are not keeping the fourth commandment. It is essential for all to seek for truth from the divine guide book, that they may decide what the Lord says on this question. Men have said much, but we cannot build our faith on the words of any man. There are two sides to this question. The God of heaven presents his law, and Satan holds out his spurious Sabbath. There are two classes,—the obedient and the disobedient, the tempted and the tempters. RH July 13, 1897, par. 4

The time has come for the true light to shine amid moral darkness. The third angel's message has been sent forth to the world, warning men against receiving the mark of the beast or of his image in their foreheads or in their hands. To receive this mark means to come to the same decision as the beast has done, and to advocate the same ideas, in direct opposition to the word of God. Of all who receive this mark, God says, “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.” RH July 13, 1897, par. 5

If the light of truth has been presented to you, revealing the Sabbath of the fourth commandment, and showing that there is no foundation in the word of God for Sunday observance, and yet you still cling to the false Sabbath, refusing to keep holy the Sabbath which God calls “My holy day,” you receive the mark of the beast. When does this take place?—When you obey the decree that commands you to cease from labor on Sunday and worship God, while you know that there is not a word in the Bible showing Sunday to be other than a common working-day, you consent to receive the mark of the beast, and refuse the seal of God. If we receive this mark in our foreheads or in our hands, the judgments pronounced against the disobedient must fall upon us. But the seal of the living God is placed upon those who conscientiously keep the Sabbath of the Lord. RH July 13, 1897, par. 6

“And God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.... The earth also was corrupt before God, and the earth was filled with violence.... And God said unto Noah, The end of all flesh is come before me; for the earth is filled with violence through them; and, behold, I will destroy them with the earth.” They were to be cut off because they had polluted the earth which God created to be enjoyed by a righteous people. RH July 13, 1897, par. 7

“As it was in the days of Noah,” declared Christ, “so shall it be also in the days of the Son of Man.” And is it not so? Any one who will look into the daily papers may see a long list of crimes—drunkenness, theft, robbery, embezzlement, murder. Sometimes whole families are murdered, that man's desires to possess money or goods that do not belong to him may be gratified. The world is indeed becoming as it was in the days of Noah, because men openly disregard God's commands. RH July 13, 1897, par. 8

Sunday is a child of the papacy. It has been nourished and cradled by the Protestant world as a genuine requirement of Jehovah, but it has no foundation in the word of God. The Christian world is tested by their relation to this matter. God moves upon men to search the Scriptures for evidence to sustain Sunday. Those who search with a desire for truth will see that in the past they have been relying on tradition, and have accepted an institution of the papacy. Those who, with contrite hearts, search the word of God for truth, will receive a blessing from God. Their characters are formed after the divine similitude. The mind is in a state of continual advancement. By beholding they become changed into the divine likeness. Their education is begun on earth to be carried on in the school above. RH July 13, 1897, par. 9

As the searcher for truth advances in his investigation, he sees that inferences and traditions and the suppositions and sayings of men, have baptized Sunday as a Sabbath. The more earnestly and candidly this question is canvassed, the more clearly will men who are judgment-bound see that there is not a particle of Scriptural evidence to sustain Sunday. God never placed his sanctity upon that day. Those who observe it offer God strange fire in place of sacred. God has never said, “Keep sacred the first day of the week,” but he has said, “Moreover also I gave them my Sabbaths, to be a sign between me and them, that they might know that I am the Lord that sanctify them.” RH July 13, 1897, par. 10

This subject opens before the earnest seeker after truth. It becomes more and more clear to him that God has not changed or altered the thing that has gone out of his lips. He sees the sanctity and blessing placed upon the seventh day, and the necessity for its observance. The more earnestly he investigates this subject, the more convinced he becomes of the truth of God's word, as seen in the law of the ten commandments. His interest in truth is tested, his love for God proved, as he advances. If he submits his will to God's will, all will be well. If he chooses obedience to God's commandments at any cost, his peace and happiness will increase. RH July 13, 1897, par. 11

Many excuse themselves for keeping Sunday by saying, “My father and grandfather were good Christians, and they died keeping Sunday. They will be saved, and I am willing to run the risk of doing as they did. The whole world keeps Sunday; and I am as well off as the rest of the members of my church.” But will these excuses be accepted in the Judgment?—No, no. Had their fathers had the light and the messages of warning which God has sent to his people in these last days, they would, if they were candid, God-fearing men, have obeyed the commandments of God. Our fathers are not accountable for the light they never received, or for the messages of warning they never heard; and shall their habits and customs be thought worthy of respect merely because they have been handed down from generation to generation? “If I had not come and spoken unto them,” said Christ, referring to the Jews, “they had not had sin: but now they have no cloak for their sin.... If I had not done among them the works which none other man did, they had not had sin: but now have they both seen and hated both me and my Father.” RH July 13, 1897, par. 12

Special truths have been adapted to the conditions of the nations as they have existed. The present truth, which is a test to the people of this generation, was not a test to the people of generations far back. If the light which now shines upon us in regard to the Sabbath of the fourth commandment, had been given to the generations of the past, God would have held them accountable for that light. RH July 13, 1897, par. 13

We are accountable only for the light that shines upon us. The commandments of God and the faith of Jesus are testing us. If we are faithful and obedient, God will delight in us, and bless us as his own chosen, peculiar people. When perfect faith and perfect love and obedience abound, working in the hearts of those who are Christ's followers, they will have a powerful influence. Light will emanate from them, dispelling the darkness around them, refining and elevating all who come within a sphere of their influence, and bringing to a knowledge of the truth all who are willing to be enlightened, and to follow in the humble path of obedience. RH July 13, 1897, par. 14

Great blessings are promised to those who keep holy God's Sabbath. “If thou turn away thy foot from the Sabbath,” God says, “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 July 13, 1897, par. 15