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End times Sabbath/Sunday debate started now. . .

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  • End times Sabbath/Sunday debate started now. . .

    In the face of the launching of the Papal Encyclical "Laudato Si", and taken into account the analysis of the Catholic blog "Catholic Ecology" (read by thousands of Catholics worldwide), I took the initiative--when they analyzed what Pope Francisco says promoting Sunday--of writing a comprehensive comment to be posted in the blog’s comments section (what was done), thus hopefully starting what I hope to be an in-depth analysis and constructive discussion of the theme:

    Hello friends

    I have signed many petitions and supported many causes in this line of defense of nature. However, although there are many positive points in the papal document, there also lies in it a cause of great concern to religious minorities, and, incredible as it may seem, a real threat of a coming back of the medieval persecutions practiced by the same Church commanded by this Jesuit pope, when the separation of Church & State was not taken into due account.

    The problem is not exactly with the Pope, or his being a Jesuit, but with the interference of Christians who cowered in the past and agreed to change what is unchangeable. If the Pope and so many authorities today are concerned about the dire consequences of undue interference of man in the balance of nature, what about undue human interference in GOD’S MORAL LAW?! That was what happened by mid-2nd century AD, when for fear of the consequences of looking like the Jews--then persecuted tenaciously by Adrian, Emperor of Rome since the Jewish BarKocheba revolt in 135 AD--Christian leaders in Rome began doing everything to not having much appearance with the Jews. After all, Christians were followers of a Jewish teacher--Jesus Christ--, clung to the Jewish Scriptures and had religious practices that identified them with the Jews as the Easter on the 14th of Nisan and the observance of the seventh-day Sabbath (like the Jews).

    To detach themselves more and more from these similarities with Judaism and being “politically correct” in the eyes of the Empire's authorities, the Christian leadership in Rome, already weakened spiritually, began to change the customs and rules of their religious practices. They first changed the date of Easter from the 14th of Nisan creating “Easter Sunday”, which caused a great controversy with the Eastern Church, that history records as “Quatrodeciman Controversy”, and gradually transferred the observance of the 7th day Sabbath to the ‘dies solis’. That was a holiday of pagan Rome in honor of the Sun god, after notions inherited from previous pagan cults, such as Mithraism, derived from the Persians. This explains why today the first day of the week is called Sunday, or “Day of the Sun” not only in English, as also in German (Sonntag), Dutch (Zondag) and other languages. All this was widely discussed and highlighted in the scholarly research by Dr. Samuele Bacchiocchi, who graduated from the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome in the 70’s, even getting a “Summa cum laude” award for his thesis From Sabbath to Sunday, published in book form by the printing plant of that University, which even received due “Imprimatur” of the Catholic Church.

    How can we let man interfere in what God so solemnly uttered for the hearing of all the children of Israel (which should act as the “Lord’s witnesses” until the ends of the earth--Isaiah 43, 10 and 49, 6), as we read in the 5th chapter of the book of Deuteronomy? And it is also said that after uttering His Moral Law of the 10 Commandments, He “added nothing” (5, 22). Then He wrote the terms of His Moral Law, the 10 Commandments, on the two tablets of stone, a material chosen purposely to symbolizes the IMMUTABILITY of such legislation. One has just to compare the 10 Commandments of the “Catechism of the Catholic Church” with the 10 Commandments of Scripture (Exodus, ch. 20) to notice the unauthorized changes on that divine law. After all, the Universal Lawgiver said later through the psalmist David: “I will not break My covenant, nor alter what came out of My lips” (Psalm 89, 34). Thus, no man, be it individually or corporately, through councils or assemblies, have a right to change what God uttered so solemnly and wrote “with His own fingers”, as the Bible puts it.

    To interfere with the Law of God is something much more serious and of even more dire future consequences than the present and reprehensible human attitude of interfering in the planet’s ecological balance. After all, according to the Scriptures (so often quoted by the Pope in his document to back up his well-intentioned reasoning) the Sabbath was not changed by Sunday by God’s leading, as there is no such evidence in the Bible or history, and, indeed, it is never labeled as “Jewish” as the Pope does, being rather designated by God himself not only as His holy day, but also as the “sign” between Him and His people for all times (Ezekiel 20, 12, 20).

    May this be also a relevant subject in these proposed discussions of the ‘Laudato Si’ document, and may those who are faithful followers of God’s word be attentive to this important detail that could make a huge difference in mankind’s destiny, so that faith and justice, and respect for the rights of minorities, are respected. Otherwise, the imposition of a certain religious anti-biblical tradition, just because adopted by the majority, could be a source of intolerance that would lead to a comeback of the medieval times, when separation of Church and State was something dealt with rather lightly. These proposal of looking for the civil government to impose restrictive Sunday laws is the opening of a Pandora box of very worrisome surprises ahead--be aware of that everybody.

    May God grant illumination to our civil and religious authorities to find ways of mitigating the ecological problems we face on this planet without resorting to civil laws in a Church-State bond fashion, favoring a certain religious tradition that would cause a return to these terrible times of persecution of religious minorities.

    Best regards

    Azenilto G. Brito