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We’ve mentioned 7th-Day Baptists before

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Here’s a great FAQ list

to think about this weekend:

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#1. Is this the church founded by Ellen G. White?

 

For the answer to this and 22 other questions,

you’ll have to use the DOOR.

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[MORE]

 

[For source use http://www.oocities.org/~sdbnet/who/faq.htm#15]

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  1. Is this the church that was founded by Ellen G. White?

No, Ellen G. White is considered a prophet and a founder in the Seventh-day Adventist church. The Seventh Day Baptist church was already about two hundred years old when the Seventh-day Adventist church was formed. The Adventist movement was introduced to the Sabbath in 1845 by Rachel Preston Oakes, a Seventh Day Baptist from Verona, New York. In 1863 this movement, under the direction of Ellen G. White, became the Seventh-day Adventist church.

 

  1. Is this church some kind of cult?

No. While the Seventh Day Baptist church is a Sabbath keeping church they are first, and foremost, a Christian church with beliefs and practices very similar to other evangelical Baptist churches.

Cults can be identified by non-biblical beliefs, such as denying the deity of Christ, and their use of psychological coercion to control members. This coercion often leads to the breakup of families, something which no true Christian church desires. Seventh Day Baptist beliefs are founded solely on scripture and the church firmly believes in the family and freedom of thought under the guidance of the Holy Spirit.

  1. Then what is the Seventh Day Baptists Church?

While not the biggest or most well known of the Sabbath keeping churches the Seventh Day Baptist church is quite possibly the oldest. The Seventh Day Baptist church has over a 300 year history in North America and even longer in England. They are, quite simply, an evangelical Baptist church that observes the Sabbath.

  1. Why do the Seventh Day Baptists keep the Sabbath?

Seventh Day Baptists keep the Sabbath out of a conviction that the Ten Commandments remain valid moral code for us today. The fourth commandment, the only one we are told to remember, says,

8 Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy.
9 Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work:
10 But the seventh day is the sabbath of the LORD thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates:
11 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.
(Exodus 20:8-11, Deuteronomy 5:12-15)

Seventh Day Baptists believe the Sabbath is a sacred time, instituted at creation and affirmed throughout the Bible. Because we desire to follow God’s commandments, Christ’s example and the will of God we observe the Sabbath as a time of rest, worship and celebration.

  1. Aren’t The Ten Commandments just for the Jews?

The Sabbath was ordained by God at the creation of the Earth (Genesis 2:3) and given to Adam and Eve, not Moses, so it predates the Jews by millennia. Further, Christ affirms everyone of the Ten Commandments he mentions. Indeed he says in Matthew 5:17-20 that, “Whoever breaks one of the least of these commandments, and teaches men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever does and teaches them, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.”

  1. Isn’t the fourth Commandment the only one not mentioned in the New Testament?

While it is correct that there is no scriptural record of Christ specifically affirming the fourth commandment it can be said with absolute certainty that he lived all ten commandments. Only two customs of Christ are recorded in scripture, teaching the people (Mark 10:1 in any modern translation) and keeping the sabbath. (Luke 4:16) Although Jesus was constantly challenged on the issue of the Sabbath He never said, or even implied, that the Sabbath, or any of the Ten Commandments is or ever would be abolished. Christ stated clearly in Matthew 5:18 that, “Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled”. Christ, our example, kept all Ten Commandments all of his life.

Further we must insist that the Bible is the word of God from Genesis to Revelation. Just because something is not stated in the New Testament does not mean that it is not the fully inspired word of God. When Paul wrote in 2 Tim 3:16 “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness”, he was referring to the Old Testament. The New Testament had not yet been completed.

  1. Didn’t Jesus say it was okay to break the Sabbath?

Some Christians claim that in Matthew 12:1-13 and the corresponding account in Luke 13:10-17 Christ is saying you can ignore the Sabbath. Let’s look at the Matthew account.

12:1 At that time Jesus went on the sabbath day through the corn; and his disciples were an hungered, and began to pluck the ears of corn, and to eat.
2 But when the Pharisees saw it, they said unto him, Behold, thy disciples do that which is not lawful to do upon the sabbath day.
3 But he said unto them, Have ye not read what David did, when he was an hungered, and they that were with him;
4 How he entered into the house of God, and did eat the shewbread, which was not lawful for him to eat, neither for them which were with him, but only for the priests?
5 Or have ye not read in the law, how that on the sabbath days the priests in the temple profane the sabbath, and are blameless?
6 But I say unto you, That in this place is one greater than the temple.
7 But if ye had known what this meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice, ye would not have condemned the guiltless.
8 For the Son of man is Lord even of the sabbath day.
9 And when he was departed thence, he went into their synagogue:
10 And, behold, there was a man which had his hand withered. And they asked him, saying, Is it lawful to heal on the sabbath days? that they might accuse him.
11 And he said unto them, What man shall there be among you, that shall have one sheep, and if it fall into a pit on the sabbath day, will he not lay hold on it, and lift it out?
12 How much then is a man better than a sheep? Wherefore it is lawful to do well on the sabbath days.
13 Then saith he to the man, Stretch forth thine hand. And he stretched it forth; and it was restored whole, like as the other.

The Pharisees, who must have been watching Christ looking for a chance to discredit him, said that the act of picking grain was harvesting and therefore work. But Christ replies if you are hungry on the Sabbath it is right to eat the food that is available and reminds the Pharisees of King David when he eat the bread reserved for the Priests. (1 Samuel 21:1-6) Also it is lawful, Christ points out, to do God’s work on the Sabbath as the priests did. If the priests were guiltless when they worked on the Sabbath could those who work for the Son of God be guilty? (Numbers 28:9,10) Finally, Christ asks us if we would help an animal of ours that was in distress on the Sabbath. If we would then could it be wrong to help another person on the Sabbath? Is it wrong to do good on the Sabbath? Of course not! Christ has in these verse cleared away much of the human clutter that had built up around the fourth commandment and shows us, His followers, how we should observe His sabbath.

  1. Did Christ change the Sabbath to Sunday?

In all of the New Testament Jesus Christ never mentions Sunday or the first day, as it was called at this time. In fact there are only eight references to the first day of the week in the New Testament. (Matthew 28:1, Mark 16:2, 9, Luke 24:1, John 20:1, 19, Acts 20:7 and 1 Corinthians 16:2) The first six of these refer to the same first day of the week, the day the empty tomb was discovered. While this was, and is, the greatest discovery of all time the fact remains God blessed the Sabbath and commanded us to remember it to keep it holy. If Christ had wished us to transfer the holiness of the Sabbath to Sunday he would have said so. But he did not. Christ, our example, kept the Sabbath all his life.

  1. But After Christ’s death didn’t the apostles meet on Sunday?

If Christ did not see fit to change the Sabbath to Sunday what authority would the Apostle have to change it? But the fact is they did not change it. On the day of the resurrection, referred to in John 20:19 the disciples are assembled together in fear of mobs of Jews, not for worship.

  1. Did Paul change the Sabbath to Sunday?

Again, if Christ did not see fit to change the Sabbath to Sunday. What authority would Paul have to do so? But he did not change it either. Throughout the book of Acts we read of Paul, Barnabus and the others worshiping on the Sabbath. (Acts 13, 16:14, 15, 17:2- 4, 18:4) Paul followed Christ’s example and made it his practice to attend synagogue on the Sabbath. (Luke 4:16, Acts 17:2) In Acts seventeen we read;

2 “And Paul, as his manner was, went in unto them, and three sabbath days reasoned with them out of the scriptures,
3 Opening and alleging, that Christ must needs have suffered, and risen again from the dead; and that this Jesus, whom I preach unto you, is Christ.
4 And some of them believed, and consorted with Paul and Silas; and of the devout Greeks a great multitude, and of the chief women not a few.
5 But the Jews which believed not, moved with envy, took unto them certain lewd fellows of the baser sort, and gathered a company, and set all the city on an uproar, and assaulted the house of Jason, and sought to bring them out to the people.”

We see from these and other verses that Paul had a powerful ministry to God fearing Jews who were already attending synagogue and nowhere is it written that he told them not to continue to attend the synagogue.

  1. But in the book of Acts it says Paul preached on Sunday, so the church did keep Sunday?

Paul certainly preached on the first day of the week, and the second and the third and every other day. That only proves Paul’s devotion to the faith, something that is not in question. The reference in Acts reads;

7 And upon the first day of the week, when the disciples came together to break bread, Paul preached unto them, ready to depart on the morrow; and continued his speech until midnight.

What is recorded in these verses is a meeting that began on Saturday evening and extended until midnight. We know this because the Jews started their days at sundown. The first twelve hours of a day is at night and the next twelve hours in daylight. This is why in Genesis we read, “And the evening and the morning were the first day”, and so on. Sundown on Saturday is, for the Jews, the start of Sunday. While the meeting referred to in Acts 20:7 is certainly a Christian gathering it appears to have been held because Paul planned to depart the next day, on Sunday. The reference to the breaking of bread may refer to the Lord’s Supper, a meal or the Lord’s Supper as part of a meal. (See Acts 2:46) All these forms are still done today at Christian gatherings on any day of the week. This text neither mandates or even implies that Christians should forsake the Sabbath.

  1. Are you saying the early church didn’t meet on Sunday?

No, not at all. They held meetings on everyday of the week. Look at a modern Sunday keeping church, they might have a men’s prayer meeting on Monday, a women’s meeting on Tuesday, choir practice on Wednesday, a Thursday night Bible study and a youth meeting on Friday, but Sunday is their special day of worship. The early church didn’t have all those programs but would meet, eat, sing and preach on a moments notice. (Acts 2:42-47 ) But the early church kept the Sabbath as their special day of worship.

  1. If neither Christ or the Apostles changed the day to Sunday who did?

In the year 66 the last Roman Procurator of Judea stole vast quantities of silver from the Temple in Jerusalem. The Jews of Jerusalem revolted and destroyed the Roman garrison in the city. The Roman Governor of Syria sent in a large force to restore order but these troops were also routed. These two victories convinced the Jews they could cast off the Roman occupation and regain their freedom. Thus began the Jewish revolt of 66-70 A.D. which led to one of the great catastrophes in Jewish history. Rome sent the General Vespasian and his legion to restore order. Vespasian did so in a brutal methodical way. In 68 A.D. he destroyed the Qumran community but not before they hid their scrolls in the caves by the dead sea. In 70 A.D. the last major stronghold of the Jews in Jerusalem was destroyed along with the second temple, except for the western wall of the temple which is sometimes called the wailing wall. In 73 A.D. the last remanent of free Jews were holding out at the mountain top fortress of Masada. These defenders committed mass suicide rather than surrender to Rome. The Romans then imposed a war reparations tax on all Jews. No one knows how many Jews were raped, tortured or sold into slavery, but it has been estimated, that as many as one million died in the revolt.

Christians were still identified as a sect of the Jewish faith at this time. No one will ever know how many Christians living in Judea and Galilee suffered and died with their Jewish neighbors.

The Jews of Judea were blooded but not destroyed. In 132 A.D. Bar-Kokhba lead a revolt against the Romans. Again the Jews were encouraged by early victories but the Romans came back at them with a vengeance. Roman General Severus and his legion began the systematically destruction of Jews fortresses and walled cities. When he was done 50 percent of the population of Judea was dead and tens of thousands of men and women who remained alive were sold into slavery. Jews were forbidden to set foot in Jerusalem and the province was renamed Palestine. It was a dark and dangerous time to be identified with the Jews.

During this period the predominate day of worship among Christians gradually began to change from the Sabbath to Sunday. The day changed, in part, because of the need to disassociate the Christian movement from the rebellious Jewish nation. Sunday, the day that the empty tomb was discovered and already a pagan day of worship, was an easy choice.

Two hundred years later when the Roman Emperor Constintine legalized the Christian church in 313 A.D. the tradition of Sunday worship was already well established in most provinces of the empire.

  1. But didn’t Paul say in Ephesians 2:15 that Christ abolished the law?

Do you really think that God has abolished the law that says, “You shall not murder”, “You shall not commit adultery”, or “You shall not steal?” It will always be wrong to worship another God, steal, commit adultery or murder, and not merely because these laws were repeated in the New Testament! Remember what Christ said in Matthew 5:18 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 fulfilled”.

Christ did, through his life, death and resurrection abolish “the of law of commandments contained in ordinances” mentioned in Ephesians 2:15. These are the Laws of Moses. These ceremonial and ritual laws kept Israel as a separate nation and foreshadowed the coming of Christ. These ordinances, such as those concerning sacrifices, ritual cleanliness, and feasts, were fulfilled with Christ and have no further purpose. The Ten Commandments do not foreshadow Christ and still have a purpose in defining sin today. The Ten Commandments will only be fulfilled at the second coming.

  1. So you don’t believe that we must keep all the laws of Moses?

No. The Bible makes a clear distinction between the Ten Commandments and the Laws of Moses. The mere fact that God has set them apart from the rest of the law should show us they are special laws. Indeed God did not entrust the Ten Commandments to a mere human scribe but came down from heaven himself and spoke the Ten Commandments directly to all the assembled Hebrew nation and then wrote them in stone with his own finger and gave them to Moses. (Deuteronomy 5:22-27) I know this is not how Hollywood portrayed the events but it is how the Bible records them. Even today recording something in stone, either figuratively or in reality, is a sign of permanence.

When it came to the rest of the law, the Law of Moses, God passed it to a single man, Moses, and allowed him to recorded it on scrolls.

The stone tablets containing the Ten Commandments were then placed inside the ark of the covenant but the rest of the law, what we call the Law of Moses, was kept outside the ark.

All of these actions, giving the Ten Commandments one time, to the entire assemblied nation, and the Mosaic law another time, recording the Ten Commandments on stone, the Mosaic law on scrolls, keeping the Ten Commandments in the ark and the Mosaic law outside the ark were done to make clear the distinction between the two. The Ten Commandments are God’s eternal moral law, the Mosaic laws were applications of the Ten Commandments containing instruction on the calendar, feasts, civil government, ceremonial purity and morality. The Mosaic law is what was fulfilled by Christ on the cross.

In the New Testament Christ continued to show the distinction between the Ten Commandments and the Law of Moses when in the Sermon on the Mount He affirms every commandment he mentions. In verse 21 Christ affirms and expands the commandment on murder. In verse 27 He affirms and expands the commandment on adultery. But when it comes to the law of Moses and the law of an eye for an eye (Leviticus 24:20) Christ, in Matthew 5:38, sets it aside with the command to turn the other check. In 5:43 Christ sites the law of Moses to love your neighbor and hate your enemy (Deuteronomy. 23:3-6) and sets it aside with love your enemies.

 

     16.  Do you make a distinction between the ceremonial law and the moral law?

There is only one distinction, the one that God makes in the Bible, between the Ten Commandments and the Mosaic laws. Refer back to question 15 for more on the distinction between the Ten Commandments and the Mosaic laws.

 

     17.  Didn’t Christ redeem us from the curse of the law?

Here is what Galatians 3:13, 14 actually says;

13 Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree:
14 That the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.

Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law, the Law of Moses, which is, if we did not obey it we would be under the curse of death. Do you really think that if you murder, commit adultery, steal or worship another God that you will not suffer the penalty of your sins? Remember,

7 Little children, let no man deceive you: he that doeth righteousness is righteous, even as he is righteous.
8 He that committeth sin is of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil. (1 John 3:7,8)

Sin is defined in the Bible as the breaking of the law or lawlessness. (1 John 3:4) I ask you, how can there be lawlessness without a law? What law remains so that there can be lawlessness? The answer is the Ten Commandments remain as God’s moral law!

  1. But doesn’t Paul say that the law is a tutor to bring us to Christ?

Here is what the Bible says:

Galatians 3:19 Wherefore then serveth the law? It was added because of transgressions, till the seed should come to whom the promise was made; and it was ordained by angels in the hand of a mediator.
20 Now a mediator is not a mediator of one, but God is one.
21 Is the law then against the promises of God? God forbid: for if there had been a law given which could have given life, verily righteousness should have been by the law.
22 But the scripture hath concluded all under sin, that the promise by faith of Jesus Christ might be given to them that believe.
23 But before faith came, we were kept under the law, shut up unto the faith which should afterwards be revealed.
24 Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith.
25 But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster.
26 For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus.

We see from verse nineteen that whatever Paul is referring to was added through a mediator. The Ten Commandments were given to mankind directly from God. So the law that Paul was referring to here can only be the law of Moses. These laws were added, as mentioned in verse nineteen, to the Ten Commandments as amplification and applications and served as a schoolmaster guiding us to Christ.

  1. But aren’t Christians justified by faith in Christ, not the law?

Absolutely, but does that mean we are free to sin, to break the law of God? No! As Paul said in Romans 6:23, the wages of sin is death. How do we learn what sin is so as to avoid it? Read Romans 7:7-13.

7 What shall we say, then? Is the law sin? Certainly not! Indeed I would not have known what sin was except through the law. For I would not have known what coveting really was if the law had not said, “Do not covet.”
8 But sin, seizing the opportunity afforded by the commandment, produced in me every kind of covetous desire. For apart from law, sin is dead.
9 Once I was alive apart from law; but when the commandment came, sin sprang to life and I died.
10 I found that the very commandment that was intended to bring life actually brought death.
11 For sin, seizing the opportunity afforded by the commandment, deceived me, and through the commandment put me to death.
12 So then, the law is holy, and the commandment is holy, righteous and good.
13 Did that which is good, then, become death to me? By no means! But in order that sin might be recognized as sin, it produced death in me through what was good, so that through the commandment sin might become utterly sinful. (NIV)

Paul is saying here as clearly as anyone can that the law remains in effect, holy righteous and good, to show us the sin in our lives. Paul, a student of the Torah, a man who meet Christ face to face, and became an apostle of God said, “I would not have known what sin was except through the law.” But yet many today say that the Ten Commandments are null and void and they serve no purpose for Christians. In Titus 2:11-14 we read, 11 For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation to all men,
12 instructing us to deny ungodliness and worldly desires and to live sensibly, righteously and godly in the present age,
13 looking for the blessed hope and the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ;
14 who gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself a people for His own possession, zealous for good deeds. (NASB)

Christ has redeemed us from our lawless sins but we are still human and we will still sin. Therefore as Christians we are instructed to deny ungodliness and worldly desire and to live righteousely. The difference between our humble efforts at leading a Christ-like life and the sinless perfection that God the Father demands is covered by the blood of Christ.

  1. Colossians says you shouldn’t judge in regards to Sabbaths. Why do you?

First, when have I judged you? I am simply stating my reasons for keeping the Ten Commandments and the Sabbath. Only God is the judge. But let’s take a look at the verses in question.

“Let no man therefore judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of an holyday, or of the new moon or of the sabbath days: which are a show of things to come; but the body is of Christ.”

It should be clear from all I have said and from an open minded reading of these verses that Paul is referring to the volume of Mosaic laws. These laws included many regulations on meats, drinks, holydays, new moons and sabbaths. The fact that Seventh Day Baptists do not keep the Mosaic Sabbath regulations in no way changes the necessity of observing the seventh- day Sabbath of the fourth commandment. The Colossian converts, who at this time would have been still attending synagogue on the Sabbath, would have understood this.

Now, in keeping with the Seventh Day Baptist principal of freedom of thought under the guidance of the Holy Spirit, you must decide for yourself what is the will of God, in regards to the Sabbath, apart from the customs and traditions of men.

  1. What is the Seventh Day Baptist position on the tribulation and rapture?

While no official survey has ever been done, I am sure that most members of the Seventh Day Baptist church are dispensational in theology and believe in a pre-tribulation rapture. The Seventh Day Baptist denomination itself takes no position believing that this is an issue where freedom of thought under the guidance of the Holy Spirit is appropriate.

One Seventh Day Baptist pastor who takes a post-tribulation stand has created a web site you can visit at Beastwatch.com.

  1. What is the Seventh Day Baptist position on the abortion issue?

The Seventh Day Baptist denomination is a pro-life denomination. The latest official declaration, adopted at the August 1996 General Conference, reads;

(Trying to get the statement from the General Conference office.)  [Sorry, that’s all it says.]

  1. Where can I learn more about the Seventh Day Baptist church?

There is a growing wealth of information about the Seventh Day Baptist church on the Internet. First I suggest that you visit the Seventh Day Baptist General Conference of the USA and Canada web site. At the General Conference web site you can find the addresses of Seventh Day Baptist churches in North America, as well as other historial and general information. Next you can subscribe to a weekly email devotional newsletter published by a retired Seventh Day Baptist pastor at the New Covenant Ministries, web page. Finally don’t forget to visit the Links Page right here at this web site. There you will find a list of other Seventh Day Baptist church web sites and additional Seventh Day Baptist online ministries.