Sunday is “special to me because it’s a day when we are not forced to worship the market,” wrote Giles Fraser, a London Priest, a regular columnist for the Guardian.
The Tories may dismiss the Keep Sunday Special campaign as a “collection of eccentric backwoodsmen: Christians, trade unions and 1950’s nostalgics,” but their ideas are directly connected to prophecy.
Anna Soubry on the Today Show thinks that until Sunday shopping came along, “Sunday was the most miserable day of the week.” But Giles sarcastically remarks. “…Nothing, absolutely nothing, must get in the way of shopping and our ever-increasing productivity. Instead of all those tedious family gatherings, we should be out there buying more things we don’t need with money we don’t have. A day of rest? God, no! We must be turning those wheels of finance, building those pyramids, getting into more debt.”
Soubry, he says, want “us to worship the god of finance on a Sunday. All other gods must be smashed, smeared, ridiculed. Only the god of money deserves our true and unquestioning obedience. Well, I do wish she’d stop ramming her religion down our throats…”
Giles acknowledges that the Bible day of rest and worship is Saturday, and gets at least some of his history right. He says, early Christians moved their “day of rest” from the seventh day of the week to the first day, from Saturday to Sunday… Despite the fourth commandment mandating Saturday, i.e. seventh day, Sabbath observance, this move was partly a way of honoring the resurrection, which happened ‘on the first day of the week;’ partly about distinguishing Christianity from Judaism; and partly a way of colonizing the posh Roman sun-worshipping day.
Giles also acknowledges that the Seventh-day Sabbath is fundamentally connected to the Jubilee, which involves debt forgiveness… “For the seventh day of the week corresponded to the seventh day of creation, when God rested – and from this derives: 1) rest on the seventh day; 2) rest for the land on the seventh year (which on the Jewish calendar is this year); and 3) the forgiveness of all debts – the jubilee – on the seventh times seventh year.
Giles argues that Jesus refers to debt forgiveness when he says, “I come to bring good news to the poor, freedom to the captive … and proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor… This is not some niche bit of scripture. It’s the key that unlocks the whole meaning of the Jesus movement. And it is fundamentally and unavoidably antithetical to modern capitalism. The jubilee is not debt-restructuring. It’s out-and-out, full-on debt forgiveness. No wonder the business minister isn’t so keen.”
But there have been times when the radical spirit of the pre-Constantinian church has bubbled up,” he added. “And it’s no coincidence that, as the English civil war was raging, and radical theology was being reclaimed, some Christians began to call for seventh-day sabbatarianism and a return to the political theology of the jubilee.”
In typical biting British sarcasm, Giles, the priest, mocks Sunday shopping in and advocates Sunday rest for Brits. One day he may get his wish, for the time will come when there will be a popular demand for Sunday rest in the UK…
“It is one of Satan’s devices to combine with falsehood just enough truth to give it plausibility. The leaders of the Sunday movement may advocate reforms which the people need, principles which are in harmony with the Bible; yet while there is with these a requirement which is contrary to God’s law, His servants cannot unite with them. Nothing can justify them in setting aside the commandments of God for the precepts of men.” The Great Controversy, pages 587 and 588.