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Now, how are we to account for these identical-day meetings at times so far remote, and at places so distant from each other? Was it by chance that the disciples and all the churches mentioned above always met on the first day of the week ? The thing is impossible. No man can believe it. There must, therefore, have been some order issued by the Great Head of the church previous to his ascension, or immediately afterwards. by the Divine Spirit, speaking through his accredited servants the apostles. They were not men to make laws of their own accord; neither is there any reason to believe, that the first Christians were such easy-minded folks as to be per. suaded to the regular observance of any appointment which did not emanate from their Lord. The example, therefore, of the apostles, and of the early churches, stands to us in the place of an explicit order, which we dare not disobey without calling in question the inspiration of these men of God, and their faithfulness, as stewards of the mysteries of Christ.
It was required of them to be found faithful; and it is demanded of us that we “be mindful of the words which were before spoken by the holy prophets, and of the commandments of the apostles of the Lord and Saviour.” Hence, we are compelled to adopt the conclusion, that under the Christian dispensa. tion there is both a sacred day called the Lord's day, and a day fixed by the mandate of heaven for the assembling of ourselves to worship him.
The objector may perhaps say, that this has never been doubted. All that has been questioned has been the setting apart of the whole day for sacred purposes. If the term “the Lord's day,” as before explained, does not include the whole day, it becomes an opponent to shew how much of the day is meant. Besides, we verily believe, that if there be a day at all appointed for the assembling of the saints, there are few, if any of those deserving this character, that would wish it to be disturbed by worldly cares. A contention to be freed from the obligation of devoting no more of the day to sacred purposes than the mere hour of assembling with the church, seems to speak in some such language as this: “We desire to give God no more of our time than we can help, and to be no farther devout than we are obliged.”
III. The frequency with which Christ dilated on the Sabbath affords an argument for its observance. See among other passages Luke, vi. 1-9; xiii. 1417 ; xiv. 1-6, and John, v. 16, 17. It is very sure, that the subject is forced upon him: but he does not shun it. He always speaks of the Sabbath as an ordinance of God: only he will not allow that it should be interpreted according to the customs and traditions of the Jews. Burdensome as it had already been made by the ceremonial law, they had rendered it, as also many of the other enactments in the same code, still more burdensome by their own additions. With these human devices the Saviour was, as he always is with every thing of the kind, at variance: but it is plain that he never attacked the law itself. He never once intimated that it was his intention to abolish it. On the contrary, he speaks of himself as its Lord; and in his discourse respecting the destruction of Jerusalem, He, in the plainest terms, intimates its continuance among his disciples. Pray ye,” said He to them, “that your flight be not in the winter, neither on the Sabbath day.” Why was this injunction given if he did not intend his people to keep up the observance of the sacred day of rest ? Let the opponents of the Sabbath explain this if they can.
IV. That the institution of the Lord's day was strictly attended to in the churches which existed immediately after the apostolic age. We do not bring forward this as an argument upon which we imagine any great stress should be laid, for we know that corruptions both in doctrine and practice became very early prevalent in the Church. Antichrist had begun to work even in the apostles' days. And, hence, a plea drawn from this source for the esta. blishment of any point, must ever be very dubious. Besides, to admit either the principle or the necessity of an appeal to church-history, for the truth of any doctrine or practice authoritative in the church of Christ, is at
not. The term Sabbath was unquestionably applied to other days besides
once to grant the insufficiency of the Scriptures—to fly counter to the ex. hortation, which says, “ To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them”—and to declare the assertion of the apostle to be false, “ All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for instruction in righteousness: that the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly fur. nished unto all good works.” It is, however, satisfactory to know in what light the Christians so near to the apostolic times regarded the ordinance of the Sabbath, and it is also particularly grateful to be informed, that they had not then departed, in this instance, from the command and example of the inspired apostles of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Pike, in his Young Christian's Guide, gives the following extract from the Apology of Justin Martyr, a man who wrote within fifty years after the death of the apostle John: “Upon the day called Sunday*, all that live either in city or country, meet together at the same place, where the writings of the apostles and prophets are read, as much as time will give leave: when the reader has done, the bishop makes a sermon, wherein he instructs the people, and animates them to the practice of such lovely precepts : at the conclusion of this discourse, we all rise up together and pray: and prayers being over, as I now said, there is bread and wine and water offered, and the bi. shop, as before, sends up prayers and thanks-givings, with all the fervency, he is able, and the people conclude all with the joyful acclamation of Amen.-But the wealthy and the willing, for every one is at liberty: contribute as they think fitting ; and this collection is deposited with the bishop, and out of this he relieves the orphan and the widow, and such as are reduced to want by sickness or any other cause, and such as are in bonds, and strangers that come from fár; and, in a word, he is the guardian and almoner to all the indigent. — Upon Sunday we all as semble, that being the first day in which God set himself to work upon the dark void, in order to make the world, and in which Jesus Christ our Saviour rose again from the dead ; for the day before Saturday he was crucified, and the day after, which is Sunday, he appeared to his apostles and disciples, and taught them what I have now proposed to your consideration.”
With this extract we might leave the subject : but it will be necessary first to notice shortly, one of the strongest arguments of the opponents of the Sabbath. In Col. ii. 16, 17., the apostle says, “ Let no man therefore judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of an holy-day, moon, or of the sabbath-days: which are a shadow of things to come, but the body is of Christ.” These words are supposed to militate strongly against the existence of a sacred day of rest under the Christian dispensa. tion. But before any objection from this quarter can be allowed, it will be necessary for the anti-saħbatarian to prove beyond all doubt that the Sabbath of the decalogue is here referred to. It is our decided opinion that it is the seventh day of the week. Thus in Levit. Xxiii. 27–39, the tenth day of every seventh month, on whatever day of the week it might happen to fall, was commanded to be kept as a Sabbath ; and the same was ordered with respect to the fifteenth day of the same month. Now every one must perceive, that if even the first of these days always fell on the seventh day of the week, it is absolutely impossible that the second should happen on the same numerical day. And from the Apostle's connecting Sabbaths
* On the name Sunday the translator of Justin observes," It was called Sunday by Justin and Tertullian, because it happened upon that day of the week which by the heathens was dedicated to the sun, and therefore as being best known to them by that name: the fathers commonly made use of it in their apologies to the heathen emperors ; but the more proper and prevailing name was the Lord's day, as it is called by John himself.”
or of the new
(in the plural) with holy-days and new-moons, we have certainly more rea. son to conclude, that he refers to the feast-days of the ceremonial law, all of which are abolished under the Christian dispensation, than our opponents have to maintain that he refers exclusively to the law of the decalogue.
Thus we have endeavoured calmly to consider both the arguments for and against the Sabbath, and we may now safely leave our readers to make up their minds on the subject. We cannot, however, conclude without reminding them of the Saviour's solemn language in reference to the decalogue: Matt. v, 18, 19, “ For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fula filled. Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven; but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.” Monghyr, August, 1834.
To the Editors of the Calcutta Christian Observer.
66 Millenarian Errors,” that you are not aware of any of the Millenarians who hold, that the first resurrection is the day of judgment. You. of course mean the judgment of the righteous, -as it is only of that judgment that mention is made. I can assure you, however, that they do hold this opinion. I have now before me a copy of a sermon in which their sentiments are fully developed by one of themselves, and also a tract entitled “ Twelve Short and General Reasons for the Second Advent of our Lord.” In the former is the following sentence: “ The coming, the appearance, and the kingdom of Christ," are, in Scripture, often mentioned together. Thus, in 1 Tim. iv. 1, “ Paul charges him before God and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing, and bis kingdom." And in the latter are these words: “Since, therefore, the glorious coming of Christ takes place at the destruction of Anti-christ, and since this destruction occurs, by the unanimous consent of the Church of God in all ages, before the millennium, it follows that Christ comes in glory to judge the world before that period.” The judgment in Matt. xxv. 31, commences, therefore, “ When the Son of man sits upon the throne of his father David :" i. e. at the commencement of the millennium.
In addition to this, I may just remark that the above sentiment has also been very recently taught in India, by a very powerful advocate-of which there are many witnesses.
L. [In justice to our excellent correspondent we insert the above. We think, however, he is unfortunate in his references; as they both relate, not to the judgment of the righteous, but to the judgment of the world. Very possibly an individual, here and there, may hold the opinion he maintains; but we spoke of the body. They indeed hold the judgment of the quick : which they explain to be Christ governing anú judging the world, in which a select number of his saints act under bim : but they make no mention of a judgment of the righteous: on the contrary, Ben Ezra, together with Irving and his followers, assert that the greater portion of the saints have no part in the first resurrection.-ED.]
V.-Memoir of Marianne, Wife of the Rev. John Goadby,
Baptist Missionary, Cuttack. No uninspired writings are perhaps more welcome and interesting to the Christian reader than those which relate to the pious dead, containing as they do pictures of vital religion in real life ; and though none are free from failings, there are, and have been many, whose virtues, pious exertions, and consistent deportment, have drawn a veil over their frailties, and excited a disposition in their circles of acquaintance to imitate them while living, and to hallow their memory when dead. Very many too have been stimulated to increased activity and more extensive labours, by reading the memoirs of those who now rest from their labours. This was the case with the subject of the following memoir ; and should the same effect follow this brief sketch, her labours and trials will not be lost, though she has been called by the Lord of the harvest to his more immediate presence.
The sources, whence more minute information of her Christian experience and exertions might have been obtained, were destroyed by her own hand; consequently many of the most interesting circumstances of her life are lost.
MARIANNE GOADBy was the eldest daughter of the Rev. Robert Compton, of Isleham in the county of Cambridge ; she was born August 18th, 1809. Of the early part of her life I know nothing, except that at the age of seven years she lost her mother, who died very suddenly ; at the age of fifteen, the care of three brothers and a sister devolved upon her, towards whom her conduct was such as to gain from all of them the most ardent attachment. They regarded her as sustaining the place, and performing the offices, of their dearest relative; and being assured that she would not stoop to require any thing of them merely to manifest her authority, and make them feel their subjection, they yielded willing obedience to all her requests, for in this form was every command given, and in many, very many instances, her desires were performed before they were expressed.
For several years, previous to her enjoyment of the blessings of religion, she was the subject of very serious impressions ; indeed from early life her mind seemed directed to the things of eternity, and, as her character was developed, it became evident to all who knew her, that she had been affected by the precepts and doctrines of the gospel, and that in her conduct and conversation she was in a good degree under their influence and direction : so that she never was the subject of any remarkable change. Previous to her making a public profession of religion, she had been some years an active teacher in a Sabbath school ; she was baptized by her father, and added to the church under his pastoral care about Mid-summer 1827, from which time to her leaving England, her exertions became more general and extensive; distributing religious tracts, visiting the sick and dying, reading and praying with them, conversing with female candidates : in short
, she 'was engaged in all those acts of piety and mercy which are proper for an active and devoted female.
In distributing religious tracts she appeared peculiarly in her element, because she was thus afforded an opportunity of conversing on religious subjects with many who by years or infirmities were unable to attend any place of worship, and often introduced to the dying bed of the young and thoughtless, or of the old and hardened in wickedness. One circumstance of this kind she often referred to with much pleasure ; she was introduced to two sisters who had been gay, thoughtless and wicked, but, when she saw them, were both sinking from the bloom of youth to the grave. Consumption had laid its withering and upon them. She spake to them of death and eternity, and their unfitness to enter into the presence of a just and holy God, unre. deemed, unsanctified ; she pointed them to the blood of Christ, as shed for
sinners, and urged their immediate and earnest application to him as the Saviour of the lost ; she visited them frequently, and had the pleasure to see one, if not both of them, rejoicing in the Lord Jesus, and blessing God
ihat He had afflicted her. The days set apart for this good work often e passed away before she had completed half her round; but then she did not
aeglect it, but went the next day to the remainder : indeed toward the latter part of her time in England, she made it two days' work instead of one. Nor was she less active in the Sabbath schools: the instruction she imparted there was almost exclusively of a religious character. Hence she had not time to attend to those departments of Sabbath-school instruction which too much secularize that holy day: yet, far from neglecting them, she spent more time in attending to them than any of her fellow-teachers, setting apart two evenings in the week for those things she could not conscientiously teach on the Sabbath. She also spent an hour with her class, and as many from other classes as would meet her in the vestry, after public worship in the afternoon: she conversed with them about the sermon they had heard, endean vouring to explain any thing they did not understand, and to impress upon their minds the importance of attending to religion while in youth, and often
when speaking of the love of Christ would she and her little assemblage eisweep together. This meeting, which she called hers, was never on a trifling account neglected, and always concluded with prayer.
In every other department of her work she was the same zealous and indefatigable Christian : rain and cold were never obstacles in her way, if duty, or a prospect of being able to speak for Christ, led the way; and when asked why she exposed herself so much? she would answer, " that others may not be more exposed. Should my fear of getting wet and taking cold, or suffering a little inconvenience for a short time, prevent me from discharging my duty, and doing my Master's work?' I think not, nor shall it, while I can go about."
At the age of eighteen, her mind was directed to the heathen world by reading the Memoirs of Mrs. Newel; this subject for a time engrossed nearly the whole of her attention, until she came to the settled determinas tion should ever Providence open a way, that she would embark in the great and good work. Well do I remember the time when, talking on missionary subjects, the question was started, Should you like to engage in that ardus pus work? She answered, her countenance beaming with divine benevolence,“ Were I qualified, and had an opportunity, nothing would delight me so much."
Not till several months after the acquaintance between her and her now bereaved husband was formed, did she know that he had any desire on the subject : when she knew, her desire never varied; she would often say, “ If this desire has been imparted from above, God will doubtless open a way for our going; to the present period I have all the evidence I desire, for he has directed to me one whose desires are like my own, though I knew it not at the time.”
She was married on the 9th of May 1833, and on the 9th of July bid a final farewell to the shores of her beloved country. Her only objeot was to promote the glory of God and the eternal welfare of the deluded heathen; no other object could have reconciled her to breaking her earliest ties, and quitting without hope of return the land of her birth.
With feelings of peculiar pleasure she hailed her approach to the shores of India, full of anxiety to commence those studies which were requisite for future usefulness ; high in hope of being the means, directly or indirectly, of alleviating distress, and pointing out the Loru Jezus as the only Saviour to some of the wretched inhabitants of this wretched'land. But alas !
are the children of men ; she landed at Calcutta on the.