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  • QUESTIONS ABOUT THE NATURE AND PERPETUITY OF THE SEVENTH-DAY SABBATH
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    AND PROOF THAT THE FIRST DAY OF THE WEEK IS THE TRUE CHRISTIAN SABBATH.

    THE SON OF MAN IS LORD ALSO OF THE SABBATH DAY.

    TO THE READER.

    SOME may think it strange, since God’s Church has already been so well furnished with sound grounds and reasons by so many wise and godly men for proof that the first day of the week is our true Christian sabbath, that I should now offer this small treatise upon the same account. But when the scales are even by what already is put in, a little more, you know, makes the weight the better.

    Or grant that we had down-weight before, yet something over and above may make his work the harder who shall, by hanging fictions on the other end, endeavor to make things seem too light.

    Besides, this book, being little, may best suit such as have but shallow purses, short memories, and but little time to spare, which usually is the lot of the mean and poorest sort of men.

    I have also written upon this subject for that I would, as in other Gospel truths, be a fellow-witness with good men that the day in which our Lord rose from the dead should be much set by of Christians.

    I have observed that some, otherwise sound in faith, are apt to be entangled with a Jewish sabbath, etc.; and that some also that are far off from the observation of that, have but little to say for their own practice, though good; and might I help them I should be glad.

    A Jewish seventh-day sabbath has no promise of grace belonging to it, if that be true (as to be sure it is) where Paul says, “The command to honor parents is the first commandment with promise.”

    Also it follows from hence that the sabbath that has a promise annexed to the keeping of it is rather that which the Lord Jesus shall give to the churches of the Gentiles. Isaiah 56.

    Perhaps my method here may not in all things keep the common path of argumentation with them that have gone before me; but I trust the godly wise will find a taste of Scripture truth in what I present them with as to the sanction of our Christian sabbath.

    I have here, by handling four questions, proved that the seventh-day sabbath was not moral. For that must of necessity be done before it can be made to appear that the first day of the week is that which is the sabbath day for Christians. But withal it follows that if the seventh-day sabbath was not moral, the first day is not so. What is it then? Why a ;sabbath for holy worship is moral, but this or that day appointed for such service is sanctified by precept or by approved example. The timing, then, of a sabbath for us lies in God, not man; in grace, not nature; nor in the ministration of death written and engraven in stones; God always reserving to himself a power to alter and change both time and modes of worship according to his own will.

    A sabbath, then, or day of rest from worldly affairs, to solemnize worship to God in, all good men do by nature conclude is meet, yea, necessary; yet that, not nature, but God reveals.

    Nor is that day or time by God so fixed on, in its own nature, better than any other; the holiness then of a sabbath lies not in the nature or place of a day, but in the ordinance of God.

    Nor doth our sanctifying of it to the ends for which it is ordained lie in a bare confession that it is such, but in a holy performance of the duty of the day to God by Christ according to his word.

    But I will not enlarge to detain the reader longer from the following sheets, but shall commit both him and them to the wise disposal of God, and rest, Thine to serve thee, JOHN BUNYAN.

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