This blog gains its name from the book Steele's Answers published in 1912. It began as an effort to blog through that book, posting each of the Questions and Answers in the book in the order in which they appeared. I began the project on Dec. 10, 2011. I completed it on July 11, 2015. Along the way, I began to also post snippets from Dr. Steele's other writings — and from some other holiness writers of his times. I still do that every once in a while.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Jesus & the Sabbath

QUESTION: Why did not Jesus change the Sabbath from the seventh to the first day of the week?

ANSWER: The day before his death he said to his disciples, "I have yet many things to say unto you, but ye cannot bear them now. Howbeit, when he, the spirit of truth, shall come, he will guide you into all truth." We may infer what some of these unspoken precepts were from certain hints that Jesus let fall from his lips, and from certain things highly prized by the Jews which he much disliked. He disliked the unreasonable and unmerciful rigor of the Jewish Sabbath and strongly leaned toward alleviation. If it was his purpose to let the sunshine into its gloom by changing the day from the seventh to the first, so as to disassociate it from its Jewish severity, he would have lost the few disciples who still clung to him after "many of his disciples went away backward and walked no more with him," leaving him uttering this pathetic question, "Ye will not go away, too, will you?" The best he could prudently do to effect this desired change was to refer it to the dispensation of the Paraclete with this suggestive declaration: "The Son of Man is lord even of the Sabbath." Hence we are not surprised to learn that the Pentecostal Church began the practice of keeping the resurrection day — called by John the Lord's day — which became so general after three centuries as to require the enactment of the civil Sabbath by Constantine on the first day. The Holy Spirit could in three centuries gradually do without damage to the faith of Jewish converts what Jesus could not do in three years without forfeiting the confidence of his little handful of followers and, dying, leave not one disciple on the earth.

— From Steele's Answers pp 8,9.