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The New Zealand Evangelist



The Sabbath, however, is no longer even a British, it is fast becoming a European question. At Wittemberg, where Luther published his famous theses, and where the ashes of the great reformer and his coadjutor Melancthon have reposed for some three centuries, a conference of upwards of 600 pastors and others, have met to promote an “Alliance of Churches” and kindred objects. At this conference the Sabbath question was taken vigorously up. The divine obligation of the Lord's-day seems never to have been so well understood, or so fully admitted and acted on, on the continent as in Britain. “Luther himself (said pastor Walther at this conference,) once took the pen out of the hand of Melancthon, as he was writing the ‘confession of Augsburg,’ saying, ‘dear friend, misuse not the Lord's-day,’ “The practice of females knitting during divine service prevails in many parts to a very great extent; and though it is so strange to out’ ideas of public worship, it was promoted by the excellent Oberlin. The truth is, the Sabbath is almost practically lost on the Continent; and this the godly feel, and sigh for the Sabbaths enjoyed in Britain. At this conference great attention was paid to the devising of means for securing the observance of the Sabbath. Pastor Mann presented to the chairman copies of the “Pearl of Days,’ and of the three Essays by working men, for which Mr. John Henderson, of Glasgow, gave prizes. Two prizes, the one of £70 and the other of £57, have been offered through Dr. Marriott, of Basle, for the two best essays in German on the observance of the Lord's-day. Steps are also about to be taken for the publishing of a magazine devoted exclusively to the subject of the Sabbath, and edited in the spirit of the “Sabbath Tracts for the Times.”