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The Seventh Commandment. Polygamy, Divorce.--Matt.
The Tenth Commandment. Ambition.-Rom. xii. 16.
THE FOURTH COMMANDMENT.
THE PERPETUITY OF THE SABBATH.
EXODUS XX. 8-11.
Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days shalt thou
labour, and do all thy work : But the seventh day is the Sab. bath 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.
The Command, which is given us in this passage of Scripture, requires no explanation. I shall, therefore, proceed immediately to the consideration of the great subject, which it presents to our view, under the following heads :
1. The Perpetual Establishment of the Sabbath : and, II. The Manner, in which it is to be observed.
1. I shall endeavour to prove the Perpetual Establishment of The Sabbath in the Scriptures.
This subject I propose to consider at length ; and, in the VOL. IV.
course of my examination, shall attempt to offer direct proof of its Perpetuity, and then to answer Objections.
In direct proof of the Perpetuity of this institution I allege, 1. The Text.
The text is one of the commands of the Moral Law. Now it is acknowledged, that the Moral Law is, in the most universal sense, binding on men of every age, and every country. If, then, this command he a part of that Law; all mankind must be under iinmoveable obligations to obey the injunctions, which it contains.
That it is a part of the Moral Law I argue from the fact, that it is united with the other commands, which are acknowledged to be of this nature. It is twice placed in the midst of the decalogue ; in the context, and in the fifth of Deuteronomy. This fact, you will remember, was the result of design, and not of accident: a design, formed and executed by God himself, and not by Moses.
I argue it, also, from the fact, that this command, together with the remaining nine, was spoken with an awful and audible voice from the midst of the thunders, and lightnings, which enveloped Mount Sinai. The splendour and Majesty of this scene were such, that all the people, who were in the cump, trembled. And when they saw the thunderings, and lightnings, and the noise of the trumpet, and the mountain smoking, they removed, and stood afar off: and said unto Moses, Speak thou with us; and we will hear; but let not God speak with us, lest we die. Even Moses himself exceedingly feared and quaked. I
argue this doctrine also from the fact that this command wus wrillen by the finger of God, on one of the two tables of stone, originally prepared by himself, und destined to contain nothing, but this and the other precepts of the Decalogue. It was afterwards written again by the same hand, after these tables were broken, on one of two similar tables, prepared by Moses. A table of stone, and a pillar of stone, were, in ancient times, direct symbols of the perpetuity of whatever was engraved on them. This very natural symbol God was pleased to adopt in the present case, to show the perpetual obligation of these commands. The