Tillam, The Seventh-Day Sabbath
The Seventh-Day Sabbath

by Tho. Tillam


Introduction and pages 1-6
Pages 7-35
Pages 36-54
Pages 55-67
Pages 67-89
Pages 90-100
Pages 100-110
Pages 113-137
Pages 137-161
Pages 161-177
Pages 177-208



Page 36 The Sun's Cessation

The select season or precise time, determined by him who is hasting to the ruins of that blasphemous Little Horn, for his change of Times and Laws.

That the seventh day was the Lordís Holy Sabbath, from the Worldís foundation to our Saviourís Passion is undeniable. (Gen. 2:2-3, Heb 4:3) And yet such is Satanís envy at the Sabbath, that he suggests a possibility of alteration, by the Sunís station in Joshuaís time, and retro gradation in Hezekiahís days.

But it may easily be understood, that when the same power who placed the Sun in its Sphere, stayed its course one day, and commanded it to return backwards another, this did only lengthen those individual days, and then returned to its natural motion, but altered not the next day at all.

It must be concluded that our Savior (who fulfilled the Law exactly) observed punctually the very Sabbath, and the scripture testifies that the holy women rested the Sabbath according to the Commandment (Luke 23:56), that is, upon the very seventh day which God instituted and required to be observed.

Page 37 The Certain Season

And the whole world (though different in Religion) will give full testimony that neither the Heathenís Saturday (so called long before Christís time) the Turks Friday, the Papists Sunday, nor any other day in the week has since met with any change so that I may with as much reason, question whether my right hand be that the world calls so, as I may question whether Saturday be the very seventh day, seeing the Jews also dispersed through the world punctually observe it.

And yet what a deal of dust has been raised from the Prelates ashes by an old Professor of New England, way against their principles, and his own conscience. His great Argument (borrowed from the Bishops) is this:

That since all Regions cannot observe the same hours for the Sabbath, by reason of the various rising and setting of the sun, therefore the seventh day is not universally moral.

What will not enmity to Godís Sabbath set upon, seeing such a one as Captain Jenison is not ashamed to use the old Prelateís worm eaten Arguments in flat opposition to his Brethren. Me thinks it should wound his soul to receive answer from Mr. Shepheard (with approbation of the consociated Elders of New England) in detestation of such

Page 38 Sin Against Conscience

ďThe fourth Commandment must stand firm, the Heaven and Earth must fall asunder, the Lord will rather waste Kingdoms, and the whole Christian world with fire and sword, than let one tittle of his Law perish, the Land must rest when Godís Sabbath cannot. (Shep. Sab. Page 147)

And surely it may sadly affect their hearts in New England, if ever this reaches their eye or ear, that one of their professed members, in a great public assembly, should combat the Sabbath with the same weapons soiled by them. And in hopes it will make the Captain ashamed, and silence all adversaries, I shall transcribe the solid answer of revered Mr. Shepheard to the cloudy argument, (which he saith Carpanter and Heylin compassed the whole earth and heavens to find out)

ďTo think (saith he) that the Sabbath was proper to the Jews, because they only were able to keep and exactly observe the time of it, being shut up (as Mr. Primvose says) within a little corner of the earth, and that the Gentiles are not therefore bound to it, because they cannot exactly observe the time of it in several quarters of the earth so far distant, is a very feeble argument; for why might not all Nations exactly observe the rising and setting

Page 39 The Feeble Argument failed

of the Sun according to several climates, by which the natural day [is determined], and so this of the Sabbath is exactly measured, and which God has appointed (without limitation of any hour) to be the bounds of the Sabbath, as it sooner or later rises or sets. Were not the Mariners of the men of Indah bound to observe the seventh day in all the several coasts where they made their voyages? Did God limit them to the rising or setting Sun of India only?Ē (Shep. Sab. P. 148)

Thus far New Englandís answer to that argument taken up by Mr. Jenison against them, into whose treasury I shall cast my mite upon consideration of:

1. The Proselytes of Jerusalem out of all Nations under heaven; whose undoubted observation of the Sabbath in their several countries is a full confutation of this airy argument.
2. There will probably be granted some variation between Sinai and Zion, yet the Sabbath was punctually observed in both places. Captain Jenisen is not ignorant of four hours difference in the rising Sun between England and the American Colonies, and yet the same first day is observed both here and there. But by the way we may observe, that the wounds he would give unto the seventh

Page 40 The Sun a Certain Guide

day Sabbath, fall as heavily upon the first day, where unto he pretends great devotion (with his Brethren) for if the seventh be uncertain, the first must needs be so; and thus while he would weaken the true Sabbath, he opens a gap to the impiety of rejecting the authority of the fourth Commandment, which sober spirits abhor. But our God has not bound us to the obedience of such hours, but of such a day; the Clock is not to be our guide, but the Sun.

Here they object, that in some (thought scarce any habitable) Regions, the Sun for many months leaves not their view, whence they suppose an impossibility of observing the Sabbath.

The answer is, that in all parts the sun is ever upon motion, his eastern and western circuits are not only observed, but exactly measured familiarly each four and twenty hours, so as not only to know their times of repose, but possibly to shame us in the abuse of ours. Should the clouds, or other meteors intercept their sight of the Sun (or ours) the fowls of the heaven would give information. (Jer. 8:7)

And as sleeping and working time is easily discerned each four and twenty hours; with like facility may the six working days be distinguished from the Sabbath.

Page 41 The Heaven's Declare

If once the heart be free to yield obedience, it will cease to create and invent difficulties (Prov. 22:18) and the renewed nature will no less breath after the soulís weekly Sabbath, than the old nature will expect its accustomed repose. The Sunís circuit and weekly revolution, is no such difficulty to a devout soul.

But whither are we roving? Will not our own climate contain us? Are we not more inquisitive (with Peter) to know what other Nations shall do, then to study our own duty? (John 21:21-22) We should even shame to slight Godís Sabbath, while the Heavens declare His glory; and while we fancy Bugbears of uncertainty in observing the exact time, Lo, day unto day uttereth speech, and night unto night showeth knowledge. There is no speech nor language, where their voice is not heard. Psa. 19:2-3

What better directions can we desire, then this faithful witness of Heaven? By his several circuits, exactly measuring out our time, and informing our eye, as words instruct our ear? When his six days light leaves our land, Ďtis then time to leave our labours; for then does the glorious Lamp of Heaven like a Herald proclaim the approaching Sabbath, that Saints may set open the everlasting Gates for the King of Glory.

Page 42 Fountain Infallibility

I would not leave this scruple, where with the self condemning adversary reproached his own principles, till the path rendered so abstruse and intricate, attain its promised perspicuity even to the weakest sight, so that way faring men, though fools, may not err therein. Wherefore observe, that in the beginning, when Heavenís bright eye declined the sixth evening in Eden, the holy God gave unto man not only a precept but a fair president also, in ceasing from the work of Creation to sanctify and observe His holy Sabbath. Howbeit at the same hour it was impossible for other Climates of the World (regularly) to begin the Sabbath, for the more Western parts must wait for the Sunís waning, or else they should not sanctify the seventh day exactly, as measured and regulated by the Sun, which God has purposely set for signs and for seasons, and for days and years. (Gen. 1:14)

Having therefore proclaimed rest in Paradise (leaving man with his Maker to sanctify the Sabbath) away he ports as a Bridgroom from his chamber, rejoicing as a Giant to run his race (Psa. 19:4-5) and so coursing in his circuit through the Heavens, he declares to the Regions sooner or later (as fast as he can fly) when to cease from their six days servitude, to sanctify the exact seventh day Sabbath.

Page 43 Summer and Winter Sabbaths

Yea, which mounting the other Hemisphere, the interposition of the terrestrial Globe, makes their Meridian the Antipodes Midnight, yet is the seventh day (as measured by the Sun) punctual and certain in each Region. God has not engaged us to the same hours, but to that assured seventh day, or seventh part of time, regulated by the glorious Lamp, ordained for times and seasons, for days, and years. Where then lies the difficulty of the seventh dayís certainty, which was suggested to the people with such a cloud of confusion?

But lastly, the difference between our Summer and Winter Sabbath in this little Island, is as evident to every A,B,C, Christian, as is the certainty of the seventh day in the midst of such variation; for who knows not that our Winterís Sabbath begins four hours sooner than in Summer, and ends up on the same account, making full eight hours difference between Summer and Winterís Sabbath. But though the hours so much differ, yet the seventh day surrounded by the Sun, is unalterably the same, and the Sabbath certain, as in Summer and Winter season with us, so in each Climate and Country throughout the world. And therefore Ďtis but an airy flourish borrowed from the Bishops (and perhaps a vaunt of more art than suits education or capacity) to compass the earth

Page 44 Sabbath and Supper

for an argument to prove the variation of time, which is so obvious and familiar in our little angle, and yet I suppose never begat the least scruple in any Christian, neither is there the least cause. But I hope the adversary sees great cause by this time, to be ashamed of his cloudy speculation (amusing the people) and humbly to confess he did he knew not what, (against New Englandís testimony, and Scripture evidence) and so obtain the benefit of Christís Petition, ďFather forgive them, for they know not what they do. ď (Luke 23:34) Carnal hearts might with more reason contend against the Lordís Supper in some countries for want of Wine, then against the Lordís Sabbath for want of Light; But when Grace shall make Saints as zealous for the Sabbath as the Sacrament, they will find less difficulty in observing the seventh Circuit of the Sun, then in supplying the defects of their native soil, by plowing the Ocean for the fruit of the Vine.

Having thus by sunbeams and scripture streams, rescued the certainty of the seventh day from the clouds of obscurity; it will be time with all humility to enquire at the gate of Grace, whether this seventh day be the unaltered solemn season for holy service under the Gospel.

Page 45 The Season Out of Season

That there is a special season designed, distinct from common time is generally asserted and received by Scripture Christians, and one would think that the Levelers of days and duties, should even be thunder smitten with the Apostles alarm: I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his Kingdom, Preach the Word, be instant IN SEASON, OUT OF SEASON, (2 Tim. 4:1-2) i.e. on the Sabbath day, on the Week days, in Godís time, in manís time; and this sense will be found the saving truth, if we take that {} in the Text for our direction to the fore going Chapter. I charge thee therefore, i.e since thou art so well instructed in the truths of the Old Testament (the only known scriptures when you were a child) which are able to make you wise through faith unto salvation, (2 Tim. 3:14) therefore be instant in season, out of season. Now the only moral season those scriptures enjoin us is the famous seventh-day Sabbath which never changed till the little horn arose. No wonder then the same spirit by another Apostle highly approves our fulfilling the royal law according to the Scriptures, (James 2:8) which (as to the season of worship) is none other in the royal Law than the Seventh-day Sabbath.

Page 46 The Gospel Good Work

And therefore we shall approve ourselves noble Bereans indeed, by searching the Scriptures whether this thing be so, concluding that if the Scriptures be able to furnish the man of God thoroughly to all good works (2 Tim 3:17) then the seventh day Sabbath is that certain designed season which God will own as a good work in such as observe it. Proud man presumes to make all seasons equal and alike, but the good Spirit promised by Christ to lead us into all truth, puts undeniable difference between season and season. The Apostle which lays so great a charge upon Timothy, to Preach in season, out of season; does thus declare his own practice; That he had been with the Saints at all seasons. And he expounds his meaning; first that he had preached publicly, i.e. as in open places, so in the solemn season designed by God for public worship: (Acts 20:18-20) And from house to house, i.e. improving all opportunities, night and day. Now that the seventh-day Sabbath was the special season for Gospel service (namely prayer and preaching) the Apostles practice, yea his constant practice is pregnant proof, as will be shown in its proper place.

This is not left to the liberty of any creature to alter, (though some who thereby justify the abominations of the Little Horn)

Page 47 Not A Seventh but THE Seventh

do assert (but not for want of ignorance) that Ďtis not that special Seventh Day that is enjoined but A seventh day; whereas we have not only the Pattern in the Mount, namely the precise time of Godís Rest to point out the Sabbath day, but to end all cavils, he points twice in the fourth Commandment to that very seventh on which he rested, by the emphatical demonstrative particle [ ], so that Ďtis not A seventh, but [ ] THE seventh day, and further requires that we should keep It holy because He blessed IT, and sanctified IT. And therefore they had need make sure work of a very clear word, for a change or repeal of that seventh day, against the day of judgement, for fear of being left speechless.

And as for such as suppose A seventh day or A seventh part of time is the morality of the fourth Commandment, they will never help themselves by it, for if it be A seventh day, then it cannot be a sixth day, or an eighth day, or any other, but simply A seventh day, unless they will destroy their own morality; and so for the other notion of a seventh part of time, which they confess is purely moral, if so, then no other time but simply the seventh part, must from week to week be devoted to Godís worship throughout all ages, for whenever the seventh part of time is altered, the Morality must needs be destroyed.

Page 48 Pure Morality

But such vain jangling, it seems they had rather have any Sabbath or no Sabbath then the true sanctified Sabbath, which God has especially designed, and whereon the choicest blessings may be in faith expected. All other days were good wherein God wrought, but the seventh day was and is peculiarly blessed, wherein God rested. And therefore Antichrist engages earthly powers more especially to profane the seventh as the chief Market day, and takes up all the filth he can find to defile the Lordís Sabbath, and affright the Saints from following the Lord in observing it.

His grand odium wherewith Mr. Aspinwal has polluted his Title page, is : That it was the Jewís Sabbath; like that scornful reproach of Pilate (John 18:35) cast upon Christ, who was indeed a Jew, and Lord of the Sabbath ; in which sense Gospel saints may very safely embrace this blessed Jewís Sabbath, who has proclaimed Himself as well the Lord of His Sabbath as of His Supper, and thereís safe shelter under the skirts of this Jew. But in scripture dialect Ďtis Jehovahís Sabbath, and no where termed the Jews Sabbath that I know of, but this I know, that as it was instituted before there was any

Page 49 Lively Oracles

distinction either of Jew or Gentile, so it remains in full force to the people of God for ever, ever since that wall of partition was demolished.

Christian, is the fourth Command for the Sabbath made odious, because it was given to the Jews? Then you may even cast off all the Commandments upon the same account. Why the whole Law was given to the Jews, the holy Scriptures was given to the Jews, They received the lively Oracles to give unto us (Acts 7:38). Observe Christian, these lively Oracles are Godís moral Laws which by a lively voice he committed to them (Romans 3:2), and that not only for themselves ,but to give unto us as they received them from God, so they gave them unto us, and therefore see thou keep them as they gave them and amongst the rest, the express seventh-day Sabbath. And beware of slighting it because it was given to the Jews. Let but this scoff drive you to disdain what was given to the Jews, ad so living and so dying, you shall assuredly be damned, for the scriptures that are able through faith in Christ to make wise unto salvation, (2 Tim. 3:15) were given to the Jews. Our Lord Jesus Himself was a Jew and given to the Jews, and will shortly come in his glory to make them a glorious people; neither will anything more hasten mercy to Zion,

Page 50 Jew's Glory

then Christians taking pleasure in her stones and favoring the dust thereof; (Ps. 102:13,14) that is the times and Laws changed by Antichrist. For Ďtis impossible that ever that beloved people should receive the Messiah, while they see his Disciples disobedient to Godís royal commands.

We (who were once drowned in the delusion) can now discern and detest that Popish impiety of image worship (in defiance of the second Commandment) and yet they can plead as plausibly for Idolatry by their wretched distinction of [Greek word ] and [ Greek word ] as we can possibly for change of the Sabbath. As their image worship is one great stumbling block to long forsaken Israel; so our weekly wallowing in Sabbath pollutions sadly obstructs the hopes of their conversion, and indeed puts our dear Savior to an open shame; (Heb. 6:6) as may appear by a passage lately communicated which exceedingly affects my soul, and so I hope it will my Readers. Thus Ė

ďThe Jews in London are very much affected with our keeping of the Sabbath, and do frequent our meeting places every Sabbath in the latter part of the day, and truly I hope the Lord will in time awake upon them to embrace the truth. As yet they keep on their hats in the time of prayer.

Page 51 Stumbling Blocks

I am well acquainted with their Rabbi, He and the rest of the Jews with him were so taken with Brother Sallars prayer for the restoration of the Kingdom to Israel, as that they desired that they might have it in writing, promising that they would print it, and send it to all the places where the Jews inhabit. I told them also your resolution to preach up the Sabbath, and they are very much taken therewith, desiring the Lord to prosper you in your endeavors therein. I perceive it is a great stumbling block to them as to believe Christ to be the Messiah, because Christians violate the Sabbath; for (say they) if Christ were not a Sabbath breaker, why are Christians? And if Christ were a Sabbath breaker then he was a sinner, and if a sinner, what benefit can we expect by the death of an evil doer? And thus you see what evil consequences follow the non-observance of the Lordís Holy Sabbath; I hope this may be useful to your Auditors, especially to those of your society.Ē

Reader, does not you heart (with mine) tremble before the Lord in the perusal of these lines? Why if the offence of one little one deserves so great punishment, (Matt 18:6) what will be the doom of Sabbath breakers (after warning)

Page 52 Ruth's Resolution

whose weekly disobedience so much dishonors Christ, and stumbles all the Tribes of Israel? How vain are their petitions for Israelís conversion, whose practice so much obstructs the glorious work? Cast ye up, Cast ye up, prepare the way, take up the stumbling blocks out of the way of my people Is. 57:14 Awake, awake Saints, the seventh seal is opened and the seventh day Sabbath breaks through those Romish fogs that long obscured it under the heathenish title of Saturday, or Saturnís day. The same blasphemous Horn that robbed us of the Holy Scriptures, has long deprived us of the Holy SABBATH, telling us that it was Jewish.

ďTis high time wholly to depart from Popish pollutions, and fulfill part of that Prophecy in taking such hold on the skirts of the Jews (Zech 8:23) as to observe all the Moral Laws with delight. Let not the unscriptural odium of a Jewish Sabbath startle any more than a Jewish SAVIOR: but let us put on Ruthís resolution in meeting the Jews, saying ďThy Scriptures shall be my Scriptures, thy Promises shall be my portion, thy salvation shall be my expectation, thy Seventh day shall be my Sabbath, thy Messiah shall be my SAVIOR, and thy God my God.

Page 53 Holy Time No Trifle

And thus shall we take up the stumbling blocks, obstructing their return who can neither brook Babelís abominations in the breach of Godsí second Royal Law, nor Protestants weekly profanation of the Sabbath with deep disobedience to the fourth Commandment. Which is most dreadful in such as continue Sabbath breaking for earthly advantage after some light of Godís law has broken in upon their souls, (at least) to suspect that it may be Godís Sabbath. So that they have nothing to say against it, and yet (through the worldís snares and love of relations) dare continue to act against it, wallowing week after week in Sabbath pollutions, till the just judgment of GOD at last leave them (through custom of sin) to a seared conscience.

Another odium cast upon the seventh day Sabbath by Gallio, like indifferent and lukewarm Laodiceans, is: that Ďtis but a circumstance of time. But the wise experienced Preacher does speedily confute their folly in a sentence worthy our observation. Who so keeps the Commandment shall feel no evil thing, and a wise manís heart discerns both TIME and judgment (Eccl. 8:5) Such as dare be careless of keeping the Commandments,

Page 54 Entrance of Holy Time

and judge themselves so wise as to condemn that TIME which God has ordained to make men wiser, we shall leave to that wisdom which is mere foolishness with God, (1 Cor. 3:19) even to trifle with that precious time which weekly conveys precious plants into the palace and special presence of their Prince.

But whereas Ďtis objected that holy time and holy place were both of like force; Let such show us the least syllable in Godís moral Law enjoining holy place, and we shall well weigh it, and in the mean time, do our duty ( 2 Tim. 4:2) in that holy time which is expressly commanded us of God, knowing that our Law Giver has as fully confirmed this holy time, as he has laid common all holy places. (John 4:20,21; 1 Tim 2:8)

Thus these devices fail, as not able to soil this shining season, Godís sanctified seventh day Sabbath, which stands with strength in Gospel times. Let our next business therefore be to know when to enter upon this holy rest; for it cannot be conceived that God, who has been so punctual in prescribing the precise time of Circumcision, the Passover, Pentecost, and other ceremonies, should leave us to our liberty for the beginning of His holy Sabbath.


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