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contain the formal reason of the command: And in neither os these is the seventh day of the week spoke of; which notisies to us, that the observation of that precise day is not ess-ntial to the moral and standing law of the Sabbath, but separable from it. If it be sad, that the command ensorceth the observation of this day from God's example in resting unon it; I answer, that a seventh day's rest aster six days labour, is all the consormity which the fourth command- requires of us to the example of God, /. e. any seventh day he pleaseth to appoint.
Moreover, our natural reason argueth for what is above asserted: For though the Jews, who lived in the land of Palestine, might possibly have observed the precise seventh day from the creation ; yet the joint observation of that precise time was impossible to all others whom the fourth command doth concern, because of the disserence os the climate where they live, which makes it night to many of them, when it was day to the Jews. Again, the computation of our time by weeks, consisting of seven days, each of twenty sour hours length, was so interrupted in the times of Joshua and Hezekiah, by the prodigious lengthening out of some days, that I cannot see how the precise seventh day could possibly be moral, or perpetually binding. From all which I inser, that the change of the day, by instituting the Lord's day, or sirst day Sabbath, in the room of the seventh day S tbbath, doth noways repeal or insringe the morality and substance of the fourth commandment.
Several proper questions may be moved upon this head.
Quest- 1. By what authority came the day for the Sabbath to be changed? Ans. By the same authority that sirst appointed the Sabbath, I mean that of our Lord Jesus Christ, who is true God, " the Lord of the Sabbath," and sovereign Head of his church.
There are indeed some disserences among divines about this mMtx,some holding this change to have been made immediately by Christ himself; others, that it was made by the apostles: But both opinions come to one thing, and equally establish the divine authority of the Lord's day; seeing the apostles were divinely inspired, and insallibly guided by Christ's Spirit, in their ecclesiastical determinations, delivering nothing to be constantly observed in God's worship, but what they had the Lord's authority sor, according to i Cor. xi. 23.tion, he enjoined them to keep it in memory of their deliverance from Egypt, as well as the creation of the world: for it is very observable in Deut. v. when Moses called the Israelites together in a solemn manner, to put them in mind of the covenant God had made with them in Horeb, he repeats the Ten Commandments to them : But, in repeating of the fourth, he leaves out the argument for keeping the Sabbath, taken from God's creating of the world in fix days, and resting the seventh; and, in the room of it, puts in their miraculous deliverance from Egypt: For, in the close of the fourth command, he says, Deut. v. 15. “Remember that thou wast a servant, in the land of Egypt, and the Lord thy God brought thee out thence, through a mighty hand, and by a stretched-out arm; therefore the Lord thy God commanded thee to keep the Sabbath day.” And hence some think, that it was not precisely the seventh day from the creation that was appointed for the Jewish Sabbath, but the seventh day from their deliverance from Egypt. Loftly, This day was also appointed them, for to call to mind their wonderful deliverance at the Red-sea, which several learned writers are of opinion, was wrought for them on the morning of the Jewish Sabbath, and seems very probable from Exod. xii. 15. 16. 17. and hence they are enjoined to rest, and cease from their labour on this day, in rememberance of their being miraculously rescued on it from Egypt, and of their resting from the cruel bondage thereof. From all which it appears, that there was something in this commandment peculiar to the Jewish nation, and which belonged not to others. And whence I may well infer, that if the deliverance by Moses, from Egypt and the Red sea, was a good reason for the Sabbath of the Jews, surely the eternal redemption by Christ, from fin and hell, is a much stronger and better reason for the Sabbath of the Christians. 5. In the command for the seventh day Sabbath, there were some things typical and mystical, peculiar to the Old Testament times, and which were to be fulfilled in the Messiah and gospel-times; and therefore to be abolished. 1. The seventh day Sabbath represented Christ, who is the only rest, centre, and satissaction of our souls; theresore th; apostle tells us, Col. ii. 17. That the Sabbath " was a shadow of things to come, but the body is of Christ," i. e. He is the substance which this shadow or type represented. .
Athanasius painly affirm?, that the change was made by the Lord himself; and indeed it is more than probable, that during Chrilt's forty days stay on earth aster his resurrection, wherein he continued instructing his discip'es of the things relating to the gospel-church, "and giving his commandments to his apostles," Acts i. 2, 3. he, among other things, appointed this change, leaving it upon his apostles to make promulgation of it to the world aster his ascension, and especially at Penticost, at the extraordinary essusion of the Spirit on that day, whereby he publicly consirmed this charge.
When the ficred penman of the book of the A£rs tells us, that Christ continued for so many days space aster his resurrection, to speak to his apostles " of ths things pertaining to the kingdom of God, i e the gospel church; he surely hath a special respect to the instructions he gave them concerning the ordinances and institutions of the Christian church. Aud as he instructed them how they should change the carnal sacrisices of beasts into the spiritual sacrisices of prayer and praise, the sacrament of circumsion'into that of baptism, and the sacrament of the passover into that of the Lord's supper; so likewise he instructed them how to change the seventh-day Sabbath, into that of the Lord's day. All the primitive sathers are very positive concerning the divine authority of this change. Ignatius, who lived in the sirst century, saith (in his Epist.) concerning ihe Lord s day, 4 Omnis Chrilti ama'tor dominicum celebrat diem, reginam et principem < dierum omnium.' August. Ssrm. 151 de tempore, saith, 4 Dominicum diem apoltoii reli^iosa solemnitate haben'dizm, sanxerunt, quia, in epdem Redemptor noster 4 a mortuis rel'urrexerit, quique uieo Donunicus appel4 later.'
2. It signisied the great Sabbath of the New Testament, or the happy times of the gospel, wherein the faithsul were to rest from the servile rites and burden, some ceremonies of the law.
3. The seventh day Sabbath being a " shadow of things to come," typisied the believer's rest and deliverance by Jesus Christ from the bondage of sin, and being brought into the glorious liberty of the children of God.
4. The Jewish Sabbath, with its ceremonial and typical worship under the law, shadowed forth the Christian Sabbath, with its pure and spiritual worship under the gospel, and so is expired.
5. The rest of the seventh day Sabbath was a type and fliadow of Christ's resting upon that day in the grave, and theresore could not be continued aster his resurrection, more than any of the other types sulsilled in Christ. Our Saviour, by choosing to ly buried throughout this day in the grave, did thereby bury the Jewish seventh day Sabbath with the rest of their types and shadows. Hence it is that the apostle Paul, Col. ii. 16. 17. doth expressly number the Sabbath among the Old Testament shadow-', that ceased upon their being accomplished in Christ the substance and Antitype, who came in pUce of all the legal shadows. Now, it being evident from the foresaid text, that the Jewith Sabbath was abrogated by Christ's death and resurrection; it is necessary to believe that either Christ, by himself or his apostles, did appoint another day in lieu thereof, for the solemn worship of God; otherwise the state of the Christian church under the New Testament would be sar worse than that of the Jews under the Old, which is absurd.
6. The two ages besore and aster Christ, are reckoned as two diverse worlds, Heb. ii. 5. wheresore as, when the sirst world was made by creation, there was a day