Nothing can be plainer than that the Sabbath was instituted at the beginning. “And God blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it: because that in it he had rested from all his work which God created and made” (Genesis 2:3 KJV).
This was even prior to the fall of man. It was doubtless owing to its being so early instituted, and so carefully observed, that, on the dispersion of mankind, they carried the Sabbath with them everywhere.
Moses did not ordain the Sabbath. He speaks of it as an existing institution. The first mention of it in the Pentateuch, is in Exodus 16:22. “And it came to pass, that on the sixth day they gathered twice as much bread, two omers for one man: and all the rulers of the congregation came and told Moses” (KJV).
So Moses had not commanded it. But he approved it. In reply to those who entered the complaint, he said, “This is that which the Lord hath said, ‘Tomorrow is the rest of the holy sabbath unto the Lord’” (Exodus 16:23 KJV). So the way the Sabbath is mentioned in the Ten Commandments shows that the people were familiar with it. “Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy” (Exodus 20:8 KJV). “Remember” implies that they were familiar with it.
Christ did not, any more than Moses, ordain the Sabbath. It was not necessary. Its authority was unquestioned. Christ observed it. LLM
This article is a condensed excerpt from the editorial in the June 1885
issue of The Earnest Christian, for which Free Methodist founder B.T.
Roberts served as editor for more than 30 years. Visit fmchr.ch/ec61885 to download the entire issue from the Marston Memorial Historical Center.