1975 Jan-MarVIII 1(75) - VIII 3(75)
1975 Apr-Jun VIII 4(75) - VIII 6(75)
1975 Jul-Sep VIII 7(75) - VIII 9(75)
1975 Oct-Dec VIII 10(75) - VIII 12(75)
1976 Jan-Mar IX 1(76) - IX 3(76)
1976 Apr-Jun IX 4(76) - IX 6(76)
1976 Jul-Sep IX 7(76) - IX 9(76)
1976 Oct-Dec IX 10(76) - IX 12(76)
1977 Jan-MarX 1(77) - X 3(77)
1977 Apr-Jun X 4(77) - X 6(77)
1977 Jul-Sep X 7(77) - X 9(77)
1977 Oct-DecX 10(77) - X 12(77)
1978 Jan-Mar XI 1(78) - XI 3(78)
1978 Apr-Jun XI 4(78) - XI 6(78)
1978 Jul-Sep XI 7(78) - XI 9(78)
1978 Oct-Dec XI 10(78) - XI 12(78)
1979 Jan-Mar XI 1(79) - XI 3(79)
1979 Apr-Jun XI 4(79) - XI 6(79)
1979 Jul-Sep XI 7(79) - XI 9(79)
1979 Oct-DecXI 10(79) - XI 12(79)
Feb Knight Descends On Jones. 1of 4.
Mar Knight Descends On Jones. 2 of 4.
1988 Apr-Jun 3 & 4 of 4.
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ADVENTIST LAYMEN'S FOUNDATION OF CANADA (ALF)
SHORT STUDIES - William H. Grotheer -
End Time Line Re-Surveyed Parts 1 & 2 - Adventist Layman's Foundation
- Legal Documents
Holy Flesh Movement 1899-1901, The - William H. Grotheer
Hour and the End is Striking at You, The - William H. Grotheer
the Form of a Slave
In Bible Prophecy
Doctrinal Comparisons - Statements of Belief 1872-1980
Paul VI Given Gold Medallion by Adventist Church Leader
Sacred Trust BETRAYED!, The - William H. Grotheer
Seal of God
Adventist Evangelical Conferences of 1955-1956
SIGN of the END of TIME, The - William H. Grotheer
of the Gentiles Fulfilled, The - A Study in Depth of Luke 21:24
BOOKS OF THE BIBLE
Song of Solomon - Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary
Ten Commandments - as Compared in the New International Version & the King James Version & the Hebrew Interlinear
OTHER BOOKS, MANUSCRIPTS & ARTICLES:
Various Studies --
Bible As History - Werner Keller
Canons of the Bible, The - Raymond A. Cutts
Daniel and the Revelation - Uriah Smith
Facts of Faith - Christian Edwardson
Individuality in Religion - Alonzo T. Jones
"Is the Bible Inspired or Expired?" - J. J. Williamson
Letters to the Churches - M. L. Andreasen
Place of the Bible In Education, The - Alonzo T. Jones
Sabbath, The - M. L. Andreasen
So Much In Common - WCC/SDA
Which Banner? - Jon A. Vannoy
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WWN 1980 Oct - Dec
1980 Oct -- XIII - 10(80) -- KEY DOCTRINAL COMPARISONS FROM STATEMENTS OF BELIEF 1872-1980 -- In the June issue of "Watchman, What of the Night?" we asked the question - What Do We Believe? - and reproduced three different sets of doctrinal statements; one from the viewpoint of Elder James White, one from the pen of Elder Uriah Smith, longtime Editor of the Review and Herald; and the third, the 1950 General Conference approved Fundamental Beliefs of the Seventh-day Adventists. Since that time more information and documentation has become available to us, and now in this thought paper we share a comparative analysis of key doctrines as presented in Statements of Belief from 1872 to the present, 1980.
In forthcoming thought papers, we shall discuss each of these comparisons noting how we see the variations and changes, and what these changes are saying to us. But in the meantime, we are giving to each reader the opportunity to study for himself these comparative statements on key doctrines. We have first noted the statements as to how we have viewed, and presently view the Holy Scriptures; and then placed immediately following these, the statements regarding the Spirit of Prophecy. How the statements relative to the Bible read, govern what can be said about the writings of Ellen G. White. However much we profess to adhere to the ringing challenge of William Chillingworth - "The Bible, I say, the Bible only, is the religion of Protestants!" (Emphasis his) the creedal statement voted at the 1980 General Conference Session declares the writings of Ellen G. White to be "a continuing and authoritative source of truth." (GC Bulletin #9, p. 25) No previous statement ever assigned such authority to the writings of Ellen G. White. A serious study of the comparison of the other key doctrines as given on the following pages will also be thought provoking. For example, in the voted Statement we read concerning the Incarnation - "God the eternal Son became incarnate in Jesus Christ." How do we harmonize this with the concepts in all previous statements that the Lord Jesus Christ "while retaining His divine nature,... took upon Himself the nature of the human family"?
We should say a word about our sources. For past Statements of Beliefs, we have relied heavily on The Yearbook. The first Yearbook resulted from an action of the General Conference Committee in December, 1882, and contained "the statistics of our denomination, the proceedings of our General Conference, T. and M. [Tract and Missionary] Society, and other associations, the financial condition of our institutions, our General and State Conference constitutions, a good calendar, and full directories of all our Conferences and various societies throughout the country." (Quoted in SDA Encyclopedia, Revised Edition, p. 1336) Such made the Yearbook an authoritative voice of the Church's position and standing. A break occurred in the publication of the Yearbook from 1895-1903. During these years it was replaced by the General Conference Bulletins. In 1889, 1905, 1907-1914 the Yearbook contained a section devoted to "Fundamental Principles of Seventh-day Adventists." This statement of beliefs was prefaced by the comment that - Seventh-day Adventists have no creed but the Bible; but they hold to certain well-defined points of faith, for which they feel prepared to give a reason "to every man that asketh" them. The following propositions may be taken as a summary of the principle features of their religious faith, upon which there is, so far as is known, entire unanimity throughout the body. (1905 Yearbook, p. 188)
The next Statement of Beliefs to appear in The Yearbook was in 1931, but this was a new statement and revised.
It is interesting to observe that the first Yearbook to contain a Statement of Beliefs was The Yearbook following the General Conference of 1888. It is also noteworthy that no statement again appeared till the time of the Alpha apostasy (circa, 1905) and Special Testimonies, Series B, Nos. 2 & 7 were published. It was during this period - 1890-1904 - that the divergent statement of beliefs was printed in the Membership Directory of the headquarters church at Battle Creek, Michigan, and the Holy Flesh Movement, which also espoused divergent doctrines, engulfed the Indiana Conference. And when the Statement of Beliefs again appeared in the 1905 Yearbook, it was continued only up to the death of Ellen G. White. In other words, we never even exemplified the experience of ancient Israel who "served the Lord all the days of Joshua, and all the days of the elders that overlived Joshua, and which had known all the works of the Lord that He had done for Israel." (Joshua 24:31)
2 -- WHAT DO WE BELIEVE?--
1894 - Membership of the Seventh-day Adventist Church of Battle Creek, Mich.: That the Holy Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments were given by inspiration of God, and contain a revelation of His will to man, and are an infallible rule of faith and practice. (p. 12)
1905, 1907, 1908-1914 Yearbook same as the 1889 Yearbook statement. (Beginning with the 1908 Yearbook, a notation was included which read - "By the late Uriah Smith.")
1931 Yearbook: 1. That the Holy Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments were given by inspiration of God, contain an all-sufficient revelation of His will to man, and are the only unerring rule of faith and practice.
1979 Annual Council Recommended ''Fundamental Beliefs of Seventh-day Adventists": That the Holy Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments are the written word of God, given by divine inspiration through "holy men of God" who spoke and wrote as they were "moved by the Holy Spirit." These Scriptures are the all-sufficient, authoritative, and effective revelation of His gracious purpose and will. They are the source of all true doctrine and the only unerring standard of faith and practice. (Adventist Review, Feb. 21:1980, p. 8)
Statement presented to Delegates, 1980 General Conference Session: The
Holy Scriptures, Old and New Testaments, are the written Word of God,
given by divine inspiration through holy men of God who spoke and wrote
as they were moved by the Holy Spirit. These Scriptures are the living,
all-sufficient, trustworthy and authoritative revelation of God's gracious
purpose and will. They are the source of all true doctrine and the only
infallible standard of faith and practice.(p. 62)
- Voted ''Fundamental Beliefs of Seventh-day Adventists": The
Holy Scriptures, Old and New Testaments, are the written Word of God,
given by divine inspiration through holy men of God who spoke and wrote
by the Holy Spirit. In this Word, God has committed to man the knowledge
necessary to salvation. The Holy Scriptures are the infallible revelation
of His will. They are the standard of character, and the test of experience,
the authoritative revealer of doctrines, and the trustworthy record
of God's acts in history. (Adventist Review, May 1, 1980:
GC Bulletin #9)
3 -- The Spirit of Prophecy
1894 - Membership of the Seventh-day Adventist Church of Battle Creek, Mich.: That the subject of spiritual gifts is a doctrine clearly taught in the Scriptures, being repeatedly set forth in various books of the Old and New Testaments; and we learn from history that the gifts have continued all along the gospel dispensation; and there is the strongest evidence that the spirit of prophecy has been manifested among those who keep the commandments of God and the faith of Jesus during the last half century. (p. 15)
1905, 1907, 1908-1914 Yearbook same as the 1889 Yearbook statement.
1931 Yearbook: That God has placed in His church the gifts of the Holy Spirit as enumerated in I Corinthians 12 and Ephesians 4. These gifts operate in harmony with the divine principles of the Bible, and are given for the perfecting of the saints, the work of the ministry, the edifying of the body of Christ.
1950 - General Conference Session added the following two sentences to the l931 Yearbook statement: That the gift of the Spirit of Prophecy is one of the identifying marks of the remnant church. The remnant church recognizes that this gift was manifested in the life and ministry of Ellen G. White.
1979 - Annual Council Recommended ''Fundamental Beliefs of Seventh-day Adventists": 14. That God has placed in His church spiritual gifts, which are "inspired by one and the same Spirit, who apportions to each one individually as He wills." These gifts will continue in the Church to equip the saints for ministry, to build up the body of Christ, and to develop the unity of the faith.
That the presence of the spiritual gift of prophecy is an identifying
mark of the remnant Church and was manifested in the ministry of Ellen
G. White. As the Lord's messenger she provided guidance to the Church,
instruction in the Scriptures, and counsel for spiritual growth. Her
writings uplift the Scriptures as the standard of faith and practice,
and function as a continuing source of divine counsel. (Adventist
Review, Feb. 21, 1980, p. 9)
4 -- Spirit of Prophecy continued
1980 - Voted ''Fundamental Beliefs of Seventh-day Adventists'': One of the gifts of the Holy Spirit is prophecy. This gift is an identifying mark of the remnant church and was manifested in the ministry of Ellen G. White. As the Lord's messenger, her writings are a continuing and authoritative source of truth and provide for the church comfort, guidance, instruction, and correction. They also make clear that the Bible is the standard by which all teaching and experience must be tested. (Adventist Review, May 1, 1980, pp. 25-26)
That there is one Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of the Eternal Father, the One by whom He created all things, and by whom they do consist...
1931 Yearbook: That the Godhead, or Trinity, consists of the Eternal Father, a personal, spiritual Being, omnipotent, omnipresent, omniscient, infinite in wisdom and love; the Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of the Eternal Father, through whom all things were created and through whom the salvation of the redeemed hosts will be accomplished; the Holy Spirit, the third person of the Godhead, the great regenerating power in the work of redemption.
That Jesus Christ is very God, being of the same nature and essence as the Eternal Father.
Annual Council Recommended ''Fundamental Beliefs of Seventh-day Adventists": 2.
THE TRINITY - That there is one God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, a
self-existing Unity in Trinity. God is omnipotent, omniscient, and omnipresent,
transcendent, and immanent, the absolute Reality whose infinite and
personal being is a mystery forever beyond human comprehension. (Adventist
Review Feb. 21, 1980, p. 8)
5 -- The Godhead - continued
4. GOD THE SON - That God the eternal Son became incarnate in Jesus Christ. Through Him all things were created, the character of God is revealed, the salvation of humanity is accomplished, and the world is judged...
5. GOD THE HOLY SPIRIT - That God the eternal Spirit was active with the Father and the Son in creation, incarnation, and redemption. He inspired the writers of Scripture and filled Christ's life with power. He draws and convicts us, renews and transforms us into the image of God. Sent by the Father and the Son to be always with us, He extends spiritual gifts to the church, empowers it to bear witness to Christ, and leads it into all truth.
1980 - Statement presented to Delegates, 1980 General Conference Session: 2. THE GODHEAD OR TRINITY - There is one God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, a unity of Three co-eternal Persons, the Godhead or Trinity. God is all-powerful, all-knowing, and ever-present, above all, through all and in all. He is infinite and beyond human comprehension, yet known through His self-revelation. He acts in and through nature and history. He is forever worthy of worship, adoration, and service by the whole creation.
3. THE FATHER - God the eternal Father is the Creator, the ultimate Source, Sustainer, and Sovereign of all Creation. He is just and holy, merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness. The qualities and power exhibited in the Son and Holy Spirit are also revelations of the Father.
4. THE SON - God the eternal Son is He through Him (sic) all things were created, the character of God is revealed, the salvation of humanity is accomplished, and the world judged...
5. THE HOLY SPIRIT - God the eternal Spirit was active with the Father and the Son in creation, and the incarnation. He inspired the writers of Scripture. He filled Christ's life with power. Sent by the Father and the Son to be always with us, He is active in redemption. He draws and convicts human beings; and those who respond He renews and transforms into the image of God. He extends spiritual gifts to the Church, empowers her to bear witness to Christ, and in harmony with Scripture leads her into all truth.
1980 - Voted "Fundamental Beliefs of Seventh-day Adventists'': 2. THE TRINITY - There is one God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, a unity of three co-eternal Persons. God is immortal, all-powerful, all-knowing, above all, and ever present. He is infinite and beyond human comprehension, yet known through His self-revelation. He is forever worthy of worship, adoration, and service by the whole creation.
THE FATHER - God the eternal Father is the Creator, Source, Sustainer,
and Sovereign of all creation. He is just and holy, merciful and gracious,
6 -- The Godhead - continued
4. THE SON - God the eternal Son became incarnate in Jesus Christ. Through Him all things were created, the character of God is revealed, the salvation of humanity is accomplished, and the world is judged...
5. THE HOLY SPIRIT - God the eternal Spirit was active with the Father and the Son in creation, incarnation, and redemption. He inspired the writers of Scripture. He filled Christ's life with power. He draws and convicts human beings; and those who respond He renews and transforms into the image of God. Sent by the Father and the Son to be always with His children, He extends spiritual gifts to the church, empowers it to bear witness to Christ, and in harmony with the Scriptures leads it into all truth. (Adventist Review, May 1, 1980, p. 23)
1894 - Membership of the Seventh-day Adventist Church of Battle Creek, MI: That there is one Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of the Eternal Father,... that He took on him the nature of man, for the redemption of our fallen race; that He dwelt among men, full of grace and truth, lived our example.
1905, 1907-1914 Yearbook same as the 1889 Yearbook.
1931 Yearbook: That Jesus Christ is very God, being of the same nature and essence as the Eternal Father. While retaining His divine nature, He took upon Himself the nature of the human family lived on the earth as a man, exemplified in His life as our example the principles of righteousness,...
1979 - Annual Council Recommended "Fundamental Beliefs of Seventh-day Adventists": 4. GOD THE SON - That God the eternal Son became incarnate in Jesus Christ. Forever truly God, He became truly man, conceived by the Holy Spirit and born of the virgin Mary. He lived and experienced temptation as a man, but perfectly exemplified the righteousness and love of God. (Adventist Review, Feb. 21, 1980, p. 8)
Statement presented to Delegates, General Conference Session: 4.
THE SON - Forever truly God, He became truly man, the man Jesus, the
Christ. He was conceived by the Holy Spirit and born of the virgin Mary.
As our Example He lived and experienced temptation as a human being,
yet without sin. He perfectly exemplified the righteousness and love
of God. (p. 62)
7 -- The Incarnation - continued
Led by the Holy Spirit we sense our need, acknowledge our sinfulness, repent of our transgressions, and exercise faith in Jesus as Lord and Christ, as Substitute and Example. (Ibid. p. 25)
1889 Yearbook: That there is one Lord Jesus Christ,... that He... died our sacrifice, was raised for our justification, ascended on high to be our only mediator in the sanctuary in heaven, where, through the merits of his shed blood, He secures the pardon and forgiveness of the sins of All those who penitently* come to him; and as the closing portion of His work as priest, before He takes His throne as king, He will make the great atonement for the sins of all such, and their sins will then be blotted out and borne away from the sanctuary, as shown in the service of the Levitical priesthood, which foreshadowed and prefigured the ministry of our Lord in heaven. (p. 147)
1894 - Membership of the Seventh-day Adventist Church of Battle Creek, Mich.: That there is one Lord Jesus Christ,... that He... died our sacrifice, was raised for our justification, ascended on high to be our only mediator in the sanctuary in heaven, where, through the atoning merits of His blood, He secures the pardon and forgiveness of all who penitently come to God through Him; and as the closing portion of His work as priest before He comes again as King of kings, He will make the final atonement for the sins of all believers, and blot them out, as foreshadowed and prefigured by the Levitical priesthood. (p. 12)
1905, 1907-1914 Yearbook same as the 1889 Yearbook except for the word - penitently - *the word, "persistently'' is substituted. (This could be a typesetting error.)
8 -- The
1979 - Annual Council Recommended "Fundamental Beliefs of Seventh-day Adventists": 9. THE DEATH OF CHRIST - That in the suffering and death of Jesus Christ, God Himself provided the only means of atonement for human sin, so that those who accept this atonement by faith may have eternal life, and the whole creation understand the infinite and holy love of the Creator. This act of atonement forever establishes the righteousness of God's law and the graciousness of His character; for it both condemns our sin and forgives it.. Thus the death of Christ is a complete and perfect atonement, substitutionary and expiatory, reconciling and transforming. (Adventist Review, Feb. 21, 1980, p. 9)
1980 - Statement presented to Delegates, General Conference Session: In Christ's life of perfect obedience to God's will, His suffering, death, and resurrection, God provided the only means of atonement for human sin, so that those who by faith accept this atonement may have eternal life, and the whole creation may better understand the infinite and holy love of the Creator. This act of atonement forever establishes the righteousness of God's law and the graciousness of His character; for it both condemns our sin and provides for our forgiveness. The death of Christ is substitionary and expiatory, reconciling and transforming. The resurrection of Christ proclaims God's triumph over the forces of evil, suffering and death, and makes possible personal victory for those who accept the atonement. It declares the Lordship of Jesus Christ, before whom every knee in heaven and on earth will bow. (p. 64)
1980 - Voted "Fundamental Beliefs of Seventh-day Adventists": In Christ's life of perfect obedience to God's will, His suffering, death and resurrection, God provided the only means of atonement for human sin, so that those who by faith accept this atonement may have eternal life, and the whole creation may better understand the infinite and holy love of the Creator. This perfect atonement vindicates the righteousness of God's law and the graciousness of His character; for it both condemns our sins and provides for our forgiveness. The death of Christ is substitutionary and expiatory, reconciling and transforming. The resurrection of Christ proclaims God's triumph over the forces of evil, and for those who accept the atonement assures their final victory over sin and death. It declares the Lordship of Jesus Christ, before whom every knee in heaven and on earth will bow. (GC. Bulletin, #9, p. 25)
High Priestly Ministry in the Heavenly Sanctuary
9 -- Christ's
High Priestly Ministry in the Heavenly Sanctuary -
1889 - Yearbook: That the sanctuary of the new covenant is the tabernacle of God in heaven, of which Paul speaks in Hebrews 8 and onward, and of which our Lord, as great high priest, is minister; that this sanctuary is the antitype of the Mosaic tabernacle, and that the priestly work of our Lord, connected therewith, is the antitype of the work of the Jewish priests of the former dispensation; that this and not the earth, is the sanctuary to be cleansed at the end of the two thousand and three hundred days, what is termed its cleansing being in this case, as in the type, simply the entrance of the high priest into the most holy place, to finish the round of service connected therewith, by making the atonement and removing from the sanctuary the sins which had been transferred to it by means of the ministration in the first apartment; and that this work in the antitype, beginning in 1844, consists in actually blotting out the sins of believers, and occupies a brief but indefinite space of time, at the conclusion of which the work of mercy for the world will be finished, and the second Advent of Christ will take place. (p. 149)
1894 - Membership of the Seventh-day Adventist Church of Battle Creek, Mich.: That the sanctuary of the new covenant is the tabernacle of God in heaven, the antitype of the earthly tabernacle erected by Moses in the wilderness; and that the cleansing of the sanctuary corresponds to the investigative judgment in heaven, which immediately precedes the second coming of Christ. (p. 13)
1905, 1907-1914 Yearbook same as 1889 Yearbook
1931 - Yearbook: That the true sanctuary, of which the tabernacle on earth was a type, is the temple of God in heaven, of which Paul speaks in Hebrews 8 and onward, and of which the Lord Jesus, as our great High Priest, is minister; and that the priestly work of our Lord is the antitype of the work of the Jewish priests of the former dispensation; that this heavenly sanctuary is the one to be cleansed at the end of the 2300 days of Daniel 8:14; its cleansing being, as in the type, a work of judgment, beginning with the entrance of Christ as High Priest upon the judgment phase of His ministry in the heavenly sanctuary, foreshadowed in the earthly service of cleansing the sanctuary on the day of atonement. This work of judgment in the heavenly sanctuary began in 1844. Its completion will close human probation.
1979 - Annual Council Recommended "Fundamental Beliefs of Seventh-day Adventists":
10 -- Christ's High Priestly Ministry in the Heavenly Sanctuary
1980 - Statement presented to Delegates, General Conference Session: At His ascension Christ was seated in majesty and authority at God's right hand. He watches ceaselessly over the affairs of His Church and of the race for whom He died. As High Priest of the heavenly sanctuary He draws all to Himself and makes available to those who receive Him the benefits of His atoning sacrifice offered once for all on the cross. At the end of the prophetic period of 2300 days, in 1844, He entered the second and last phase of His ministry: He began a final work of judgment which is a part of the ultimate disposition of all sin, a work typified by the cleansing of the ancient Hebrew sanctuary on the day of atonement. (p. 69)
1980 - Voted "Fundamental Beliefs of Seventh-day Adventists": There is a sanctuary in heaven, the true tabernacle which the Lord set up and not man. In it Christ ministers on our behalf, making available to believers the benefits of His atoning sacrifice offered once for all on the cross. He was inaugurated as our great High Priest and began His intercessory ministry at the time of His ascension. In 1844, at the end of the prophetic period of 2300 days, He entered the second and last phase of His atoning ministry. It is a work of investigative judgment which is part of the ultimate disposition of all sin typified by the cleansing of the ancient Hebrew sanctuary on the Day of Atonement. In that typical service the sanctuary was cleansed with the blood of animal sacrifices, but the heavenly things are purified with the perfect sacrifice of the blood of Jesus.
Place of the Study of Prophecy
- Membership of the Seventh-day Adventist Church at Battle Creek,
prophecy is a part of God's revelation to man; that a blessing is pronounced
on those who study it; and that, as the Saviour himself has called attention
to Daniel's prophecy, it is but reasonable to suppose that the prophecies
may be understood; that the world's history, the rise and fall of empires,
is outlined in numerous great chains of prophecy, and that these prophecies
are now all
11 -- The Place of the Study of Prophecy continued
1889, 1905, 1907- 1914 Yearbook: That prophecy is a part of God's revelation to man; that it is included in that Scripture which is profitable for instruction; that it is designed for us and our children; that so far from being enshrouded in impenetrable mystery, it is that which especially constitutes the word of God a lamp to our feet and a light to our path; that a blessing is pronounced upon those who study it; and that, consequently, it is to be understood by the people of God sufficiently to show them their position in the world's history and the special duties required at their hands. (p. 148, 1889 Yearbook)
1931 Yearbook: (NONE)
1979 - Annual Council Recommended "Fundamental Beliefs of Seventh-day Adventists": (NONE)
1980 - Statement presented to Delegates, General Conference Session: (NONE)
1980 - Voted "Fundamental Beliefs of Seventh-day Adventists: (NONE)
of "the Man of Sin"
1894 - Membership of the Seventh-day Adventist Church of Battle Creek, Mich.: That the man of sin, the papal power, has thought to change times and laws (the law of God), and has misled almost all Christendom in regard to the fourth commandment; and that there are numerous prophecies of a great Sabbath reform to be wrought among believers just before the second coming of Christ. (p.14)
1905, 1907-1914 Yearbook same as the 1889 Yearbook.
1931 Yearbook: (NONE)
1979 - Annual Council Recommended "Fundamental Beliefs of Seventh-day Adventists": (NONE)
1980 - Statement presented to Delegates, General Conference Session: (NONE)
1980 - Voted "Fundamental Beliefs of Seventh-day Adventists": (NONE) --- (1980 Oct) --- END --- TOP
1980 Nov -- XIII - 11(80) -- THE HERESY OF THE SEVENTH-DAY ADVENTIST EVANGELICAL CONFERENCES CONFIRMED BY THE ACTION OF THE 1980 GENERAL CONFERENCE SESSION-- When the book - Questions on Doctrine - was published in 1957 following the Seventh-day Adventist Evangelical Conferences of 1955-1956, the Editorial Committee stated in the "Introduction:" No statement of Seventh-day Adventist belief can be considered official unless it is adopted by the General Conference in quadrennial session, when accredited delegates from the whole-world field are present. The statement of Fundamental Beliefs [1931 as amended at the 1950 Session] as mentioned above is our only official statement. The answers in this volume are an expansion of doctrinal positions contained in that official statement of Fundamental Beliefs. (p. 9)
A number, including the late Elder M. L. Andreasen, Elder David Bauer, and this writer, did not consider the book - Questions on Doctrine - an expansion of the 1931 Statement of Beliefs, but rather a departure from the faith once committed to the Church. The response on the part of some of the hierarchy was that since this book was not an official statement, and could not be until voted by the General Conference in session there was no reason to become unduly concerned. However, others attempted to defend the positions taken in the book. One striking example of this defense by affirmation came from the Editor of the Adventist Review. He wrote to one of the laity of the Church: This book [Questions on Doctrine] in no way changes our fundamental beliefs. In fact, it probably sets them forth more clearly than any publication that has been issued from our presses in many a year. I have been next to this whole program from the very beginning, [Unruh evidently was not aware of this as Wood's name does not appear in the Adventist Heritage Report] and I have yet to hear any serious reader of this book offer a criticism that can bear examination. [The Editor appears not to have heard of Andreasen's Letters to the Churches.] (Letter dated, February 28, 1968)
Regardless of how the hierarchy seeks to justify the conferences that took place between Barnhouse and Martin for the Evangelicals; and Unruh, Froom, Anderson, and Read for the Church, apostasy of the darkest hue was perpetrated by these men who sought to speak for the Church. And this apostasy was approved by the leadership
p 2 -- of the Church. One needs read only Unruh's report in the Adventist Heritage (Vol. 4, #2, pp. 35-46) for this verification.
At the very beginning of the conferences, Barnhouse stated that he and Martin "immediately... perceived that the Adventists were strenuously denying certain doctrinal positions which had been previously attributed to them." (Eternity, Sept., 1956) In the same article, he further commented: The position of the Adventists seems to some of us in certain cases to be a new position; to them it may be merely the position of the majority group of sane leadership which is determined to put the brakes on any members who seek to hold views divergent from that of the responsible leadership of the denomination.
What was one of these "certain cases" which they perceived as a "new position?" Barnhouse has stated it thus: The final major area of disagreement is over the doctrine of the "investigative judgment," which is a doctrine never known in theological history until the second half of the nineteenth century and which is a doctrine held exclusively by the Seventh-day Adventists. At the very beginning of our contacts with the Adventist leaders, Mr. Martin and I thought that this would be the doctrine on which it would be impossible to come to any understanding which would permit our including them among those who could be counted as Christians believing in the finished work of Christ. (Ibid.)
Now what did these Evangelicals hear the Adventist conferees state regarding this basic Adventist teaching? Mr. Barnhouse has written devastatingly: Mr. Martin and I heard the Adventist leaders say, flatly, that they repudiate all such extremes, [The literalism of the heavenly sanctuary]. This they did in no uncertain terms. Further, they do not believe, as some of the earlier teachers taught, that Jesus' atoning work was not completed on Calvary but instead that He was still carrying on a second ministering work since 1844. This idea is also totally repudiated. They believe that since His ascension Christ has been ministering the benefits of the atonement which He completed on Calvary. (Ibid.)
Further, Unruh confirms that this is what the Adventist conferees actually told Barnhouse and Martin. He wrote: We affirmed our belief in the eternal and complete deity of Christ, in His sinless life in the incarnation, in his atoning death on the cross, once for all and all-sufficient, in His literal resurrection, and in His priestly ministry before the Father, applying the benefits of the atonement completed on the cross. (Adventist Heritage, op. cit., p. 38)
Observe now, how this new doctrine was expressed in the book Questions on Doctrine - when it was published. It is stated:
p 3 -- When, therefore, one hears an Adventist say, or reads in Adventist literature - even in the writings of Ellen G. White - that Christ is making atonement now, it should be understood that we mean simply that Christ is now making application of the benefits of the sacrificial atonement He made on the cross; that He is making it efficacious for us individually, according to our needs and requests. (pp. 354-355 emphasis theirs)
To underscore that nothing was to be obtained for the believer by the ministry of Christ in the heavenly sanctuary, in this book it is further stated: How glorious is the thought that the King, who occupies the throne, is also our representative at the court of heaven! This becomes all the more meaningful when we realize that Jesus our surety entered the "holy places," and appeared in the presence of God for us. But it was not with the hope of obtaining something for us at that time, or at some future time. No! He had already obtained it for us on the cross. (p. 381, emphasis theirs.)
With this background, take your previous thought paper [WWN (XIII-10)] and turn to page 10. There at the top of the page begins the statement from the Annual Council of 1979 recommended statement of beliefs, followed by the statement given to the delegates at the Dallas Session, and the third paragraph gives the statement as voted in regard to Christ's High Priestly Ministry in the Heavenly Sanctuary. Observe closely the following sentences from these statements:
That there is in heaven a sanctuary in which Christ ministers in our behalf, making available to believers the benefits of His atoning sacrifice offered once for all on the cross. (1979 Recommended)
As High Priest of the heavenly sanctuary He draws all to Himself and makes available to those who receive Him the benefits of His atoning sacrifice offered once for all on the cross. (1980 Presented)
In it [a sanctuary in heaven], Christ ministers on our behalf, making available to believers the benefits of His atoning sacrifice offered once for all on the cross. (1980 Voted)
By checking closely all previous statements of belief, even the 1931 Statement as voted by the 1950 General Conference in Session, in the areas of "The Atonement" and "Christ's High Priestly Ministry in the Heavenly Sanctuary," no where can one find the phraseology as noted above. Keep in mind that the Seventh-day Adventist Evangelical Conferences came after the 1950 General Conference Session in 1955-1956. Observe closely the wording of the previous statements of belief in the area of the atonement: [WWN (XIII-10), p. 7] Jesus Christ "died our sacrifice, was raised for our justification, ascended on high to be our only Mediator in the sanctuary in heaven, where, with His blood, He makes the atonement for our sins; which atonement, so far from being made on the cross, which was but the offering of the sacrifice, is the very last portion of His work as priest, . . ." (1872 Tract; 1874 Signs of the Times Editorial)
p 4 -- Jesus Christ "died our sacrifice, was raised for our justification, ascended on high to be our only Mediator in the sanctuary in heaven, where, through the merits of His shed blood, He secures the pardon and forgiveness of the sins of all those who penitently come to Him." (YB 1889, 1905, 1907-1914)
Jesus Christ "died our sacrifice, was raised for our justification, ascended on high to be our only Mediator in the sanctuary in heaven, where, through the atoning merits of His blood, He secures the pardon and forgiveness of all who penitently come to God through Him." (1894, Battle Creek Church Directory)
In all of these statements of belief from 1872 through 1914, it is plainly stated that Jesus Christ as High Priest made the atonement in heaven - not on the Cross which was but the Sacrifice - and that in that heavenly sanctuary atonement, He did obtain something for us - the forgiveness and pardon of our sins as we come penitently to God through Him.
The Yearbooks (1889, 1905, 1907-1914) are likewise very explicit in regard to the priestly ministry of Christ in the final atonement. They read: That the sanctuary of the new covenant is the tabernacle of God in heaven . . . [and] is the sanctuary to be cleansed at the end of the two thousand and three hundred says, what is termed its cleansing being in this case, as in the type, simply the entrance of the high priest into the most holy place, to finish the round of service connected therewith, by making the atonement and removing from the sanctuary the sins which had been transferred to it by means of the ministration in the first apartment; and that this work in the antitype, beginning in 1844, consists in actually blotting out the sins of believers. [WWN (XIII - 10), p. 9]
If the types of the earthly sanctuary established by God Himself teach us anything - they teach us that it was not the blood of the sacrifice offered which obtained forgiveness, or cleansing, but the blood of the sacrifice mediated which was efficacious in symbol to the sinner. That which was done in type became a reality in the sacrifice and mediation of Jesus Christ, who after having offered Himself as the victim, ascended into the heavenly sanctuary as the high priest to make the atonement for the believer.
In the 1955-1956 Conferences with the Evangelicals, we denied this basic Biblical and Adventist truth, even going to the extent of putting in writing - Questions on Doctrine (pp. 354-355) - that when our spiritual fathers including Ellen G. White, spoke, wrote, or taught this fundamental concept they did not mean it, but rather "that Christ is now making application of the benefits of the sacrificial atonement He made on the cross." This denial of our historic faith we have now confirmed in the Statement of Belief voted at the General Conference Session in Dallas, Texas. The apostasy of the 50's has become the stated faith of the 80's!
We were warned in regard to the Alpha apostasy at the turn of the century that - The track of truth lies close beside the track of error, and both tracks may seem to be one to minds which are not worked by the Holy
p 5 -- Spirit, and which, therefore, are not quick to discern the difference between truth and error. (Special Testimonies, Series B, No. 2, p. 52)
What was true concerning the Alpha Apostasy is equally if not more so, true concerning the Omega Apostasy. While the delegates to the 1980 Session sought to avoid the use of the words - "completed atonement" - in referring to the sacrifice on the Cross, and deleted from the Statement given to them at the beginning of the session, the phrase - "This act of atonement" [WWN (XIII-10), p. 81 - they still accepted phraseology in another section which means the same thing as that which was deleted in a previous section. The cross is noted as "this perfect atonement" with its benefits merely made "available to the believers" through Christ's heavenly ministry. Thus is confirmed as declared in Questions on Doctrine, that Christ returned to heaven "not with the hope of obtaining something for us," for "He had already obtained it for us on the cross." Yet there are those who believe that a great victory was obtained in Dallas, Texas, simply because some not so subtle heresies were deleted from the recommended Statement issued at the 1979 Annual Council. But instead of restoring the historic faith which had been committed to our trust, the guardians of the spiritual interests of the people, led by the president of the General Conference himself voted to confirm the sellout perpetrated in the Seventh-day Adventist Evangelical Conferences of 1955-1956. How deceived can we become!
To top this deception, many are now rejoicing in what was voted in regard to Dr. Desmond Ford, thinking that this has now purified our faith, when in reality we confirmed at Dallas some of the very doctrine which Dr. Ford had merely carried to its ultimate conclusion. For if the atonement of Christ was once for all on the Cross, then is not Dr. Ford correct in maintaining that there is no heavenly significance to 1844? Why condemn him for teaching what was voted as "the voice of God" in Dallas. So long as anyone subscribes to the apostasy of Dallas, they are as much a partaker in heresy as Dr. Ford is. They should join forces with him. This includes the Editor of the Adventist Review who believed in 1968 - and to my knowledge I have not read a confession of repentance, nor a retraction that - Questions on Doctrine sets forth our fundamental beliefs "more clearly than any other publication that has been issued from our presses in many a year." So he believes with Ford that Christ obtains nothing for us in the sanctuary, for He obtained it all on the Cross. It is true that one can find from his pen as Editor attacks on Ford's position - this only compounds the deception. It is simply the blind leading the blind. May God help us to awaken to actually what has taken place. The Omega of apostasy has come to full fruition. What was begun in 1955-1956 has now been officially adopted in 1980.
1 Documentary Notations - In referring to the Key Doctrinal Comparisons from Statements of Belief, 1872-1980 as given in the October thought paper, we shall use the following - WWN (XIII-10). For example,should we be referring to the comparison on the Spirit of Prophecy, and were quoting from the sentences added at the 1950 General Conference Session to the 1931 Statement of Belief, we would note it as follows - [WWN (XIII-10), p. 3, GC, 1950] The Yearbook references will be cited as YB-1889, etc. The most recent statements will be noted as 1979-Recommended; 1980-Presented; and 1980-Voted.
(In the January, 1981 issue of "Watchman, What of the Night?" we shall consider another doctrinal deviation.)
6 -- REMEMBER YE THE LAW OF MOSES MY
SERVANT -- Remember
ye the law of Moses my servant, which I commanded unto him in Horeb for
all Israel, with the statutes and judgments.
The entire chapter in Malachi from which these verses are quoted is eschatological in import - it refers to the last times. It speaks of the eradication of sin - "all that do wickedly, shall be stubble;" for "they shall be ashes." Mal. 4:1, 3) It speaks of victory and restoration - "Unto you that fear my name shall the Sun of righteousness arise with healing in His wings." (Mal. 4:2) And we recognize that the prophecy concerning Elijah has definite last day implications. This then places in the frame work of the last days every verse of this chapter in Malachi, except the verse which tells us to "Remember the law of Moses my servant." How shall this verse be related?
New Testament, these two men Moses and Elijah are associated together
in the transfiguration of Jesus on the mount. (Luke 9:29-31) The disciples
who accompanied Jesus, and who beheld and heard Moses and Elijah communing
with him, related this experience with the prophecy of Malachi. (Matt.
17:10) It is of interest to note about what Moses and Elijah communed
with Jesus. Luke states
main thrust of the book of Hebrews is centered in the sacrificial laws
and ordinances of the law of Moses as God commanded him in Mt. Sinai.
Some wish to emphasize only that the book of Hebrews tells us that Christ
ascended into the presence of God, and was seated on the right hand of
the Throne of the Majesty on high. And so the book of Hebrews states.
(Heb. 1:3; 8:1; 9:24) But why make these words any more literal, than
the statements that the earthly sanctuary was a pattern of the heavenly.
(Heb. 9:23) If one is to be understood literally, should not the other
also? Are we not told that "He shall be a priest upon His throne"?
(Zech. 6:1-3) Can we not understand Christ seated on the right hand of
the throne of the Majesty as another expression for the fact that upon
His ascension, Christ was inaugurated High Priest forever after the Order
of Melchisedec? The "right hand" is a Biblical expression indicating
favor, and the "throne" is a symbol of authority. All power
(authority - Gr) was given unto Him. (Matt. 28: 18) Is not the basis of
that power the nail prints in His hands as He pleads His shed blood? (See
Hab. 3:4 ARV) Why try to literalize the sitting of Christ
p 7 -- at the right hand of God - "hence forth expecting" - when the book of Revelation places Him at center stage "in the midst of the throne" as a Lamb as it had been slain! (Rev. 5:6)
The book of Hebrews is very clear that the earthly pattern had two apartments, and in the first apartment the priests ministered daily, but into the second apartment "went the high priest alone once every year." (Heb. 9:2-7) Further, the writer clearly defines these two apartments, one he calls the holy place, or sanctuary (Heb. 9:2 KJV), and the other within the second veil, he terms "the holiest of all ." (Heb. 9:3) Of this second apartment and its services, it is stated - "We cannot now speak particularly." (Heb. 9:5) The whole emphasis of Hebrews pertaining to the priesthood of Christ is directed to His ministry in the first apartment as He appears in the presence of God for us. In the unveiling of Jesus Christ, which God gave to Him to reveal to His people, the Father is pictured enthroned where the golden candlesticks are located. (Rev. 4:5) Lest there be any misunderstanding as to where this ministry as pictured in Revelation is being carried on, John beheld twenty-four elders attired in priestly garb "having everyone of them ... golden vials full or incense, which are the prayers of the saints." (Rev. 4:4; 5:8 margin) The Scripture is emphatic that the High Priest alone ministers in the Most Holy Place!
To understand this heavenly ministry, God commanded Moses in Horeb a law of sacrifices and offerings, and specified the procedure of offering, and by whom they were to be offered, and what results were to accrue to the offerer in type. While it is true that these sacrifices were fulfilled in the death of Christ, and are now no longer obligatory, they were not meaningless ritual , but specified by God to convey the plan and procedure of salvation devised by God Himself. "Thy way, 0 God, is in the sanctuary." (Ps. 77:13) To understand that way of God in the sanctuary above, we must have knowledge of the sanctuary He patterned below to represent what He planned to do, and how He would do it. It was the Gospel in types and shadows. To alter this procedure as revealed by God is to introduce a false gospel.
The ministry of the priests, who served unto "the example and shadow of heavenly things" (Heb. 8:5) was divided between the daily and yearly services, with only the high priest officiating on the yearly Day of Atonement. It was they alone who made atonement, whether it was the daily or yearly services which were involved. They made this atonement, not as a sinner, but as one who stood in the place of the Christ to come. No one who stood before God as a sinner could make atonement. The sinner could only bring his offering, and having confessed over it his sin, slay it. It was then - and not until then - that the priest entered the picture. Taking of the blood, he obtained the atonement which in the daily service prefigured forgiveness to the sinner. (Read carefully Leviticus 4.)
The annual or yearly service, involved the High Priest alone, and the blood of the Lord's goat. The people individually provided nothing - they made no confession - the High Priest alone with blood provided by the Lord himself - obtained an atonement which brought cleansing to the afflicted soul who was praying, waiting the final consummation of the mediation. (See Lev. 23:27-32; Lev. 16)
These services commanded in the law of Moses, we need to especially understand before the great and dreadful day of the Lord, for when He comes the second time, He comes without sin unto salvation. (Heb. 9:28) "How shall we escape if we neglect so great a salvation?" is the question of the book of Hebrews. (2:3)
p 8 -- "Divine grace is needed at the beginning, divine grace at every step of advance, and divine grace alone can complete the work." (TM, p., 508) The sinner could not make atonement for himself as he came bringing his sacrifice, by which he said, "I accept my Substitute." As he sought to perceive the meaning of the candlesticks, the table of shewbread, and the altar of incense - divine grace was needed at every step of advance. Then on the Day of Atonement - as he came to afflict his soul, no offering could he bring - it was the Lord's goat, and the High Priest alone who could effect the atonement, and cleanse his soul.
"Remember ye the law of Moses my servant which I commanded him in Horeb for all Israel."
Galetsky is called "pastor" by his flock of fundamentalist Christians scattered in small congregations across the USSR. They are the True and Free Seventh-day Adventists, an illegal, underground group that refuses to accept any state control over religion.
Galetsky, a native of the Ukraine, became leader of the illegal Adventists following the death in January of Vladimir Shelkov, 84.
HIERARCHY PLANS NEW WORLD DIVISION -- C. E Bradford, President of the North American Division of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, announced in the Pacific Union College Church on Sabbath, August 23, 1980, that the Church leaders were planning to form a new world Division of the Church made up of the legally recognized churches in the USSR, The hierarchy of the Curia on the Sligo refuse to recognize, or have any dealings with the True and Free Seventh-day Adventists in the USSR.
KGB CLERGY (The Toronto Sun., July 9, 1980, p. 10) -- Controversy at the Baptist World Congress in Toronto centers on whether or not the 14 Soviet delegates are true believers in God - or agents of the KGB. In one sense, that the matter is even disputed, reveals the hopelessness of convincing some to be realistic.
and as dispassionately as possible, it is inconceivable that traveling
priests or clergy from the Soviet Union are anything but KGB-sponsored.
p 9 -- That is not to say they all are KGB officers, but they are informers, propagandists, talent scouts, recruiters, watchdogs, or whatever for the KGB. With absolute certainty it can be said that no Soviet delegate to any foreign conference is a free agent. He or she has had to make compromises with the KGB, whether it is informing on comrades or spying on the hosts. And those who repeatedly travel abroad are professional informers and agents, or have sold their souls. This is not a moral judgment, it is cold, hard, provable fact...
Religion is especially ludicrous. Here is an atheistic, antichrist system where preaching, or teaching Sunday school, entails a five-year prison sentence. Yet some churches in the West still insist there is religious freedom in the USSR and refuse to believe that all state-approved clergy are penetrated by the KGB. From the Soviet viewpoint the wisdom of the KGB infiltrating world religious bodies is seen in the reluctance of, say, the World Council of Churches, the Vatican, or the World Baptist Alliance [and the Seventh-day Adventist leadership] to criticize Soviet persecution of religion. Some who should know better prefer to accept KGB assurances that there is no religious persecution rather than listen to their victims. (Emphasis theirs) - An Editorial
"ADVENTIST ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS" -- Yes, this is the title of an article in the Ministry (August, 1980, pp., 22-23) In it the doctor-author wrote: It is time for us as Seventh-day Adventists to recognize that we too have a problem among us with alcohol. In too many Adventist homes alcohol is being served, not only at parties, but as a refreshment at the dinner table! Wet bars can be seen in some Adventist homes. Nor should we think that only professional people are involved in the problem.
Some of our own young people are growing up in this tolerant atmosphere regarding alcohol. They are using alcohol and other drugs and thus getting into the same problems as other students in spite of our church's influence. Peer pressure, of course, is very strong, but so is parental example. Young people today are not deceived by their parent's attitude. What can we expect of young people when their parents take a social drink or have beer or wine in their refrigerator? Or what can we expect if their Adventist minister agrees privately that "a little wine is all right, " using Paul's advice to Timothy as his Biblical authority? (p. 22)
no signs of repentance are visible from the Curia on the Sligo. Could
it be that we have passed the same unseen line as did Esau, and now can
find "no place of repentance" even if we should seek it carefully
with tears? (Heb. 12:17) Did we not sell our birthright for a morsel of
approval by the Evangelicals in the 1955-1956 Conferences with them? And
has not God spoken in the fulfilled prophecy of Luke 21:24? Could it be
that we are closer than we think to the fulfillment of the warning which
reads - "The day of God's vengeance is just upon us." (5T:212)
p 10 -- KINSHIP KAMPMEETING -- A campmeeting sponsored by the Kinship Group composed of Seventh-day Adventist Gays was held August 5-10 in a high desert resort area outside of Phoenix, AZ. In response to the group's appeal, the General Conference permitted three professors from Andrews University to attend and speak. Also, Elder Londis, pastor of the Sligo SDA Church, conducted the Sabbath worship service, and Pastor Josephine Griffin Benton of the Rockville, Maryland, SDA Church spoke at the Sabbath afternoon meeting. In addition to these, the General Conference paid the way for Colin Cook, an "ex-gay SDA pastor" who "is practicing psychology at the present time" to come and give his testimony. Whatever the merits or demerits of the General Conference action, their position was to seek to help these people, some of whom have been disfellowshipped, and others who are still in good and regular standing with the Church. There are some clothed in their garments of self-righteous works who will criticize the officers of the General Conference for responding to this appeal from SDA Gays, being unmindful that Jesus himself ate with Publicans and sinners. However, the Research Committee of the General Conference is preparing a paper on Human Sexuality. The position taken in this paper will reveal much as to the thinking of the leadership of the Church in this crucial area. Then it will be time enough to comment.
The sad part of this present picture is that these of the Kinship Group have for the most part been raised in Adventist homes, attended church schools, academies, and our colleges, rather than having been half-converted statistics through our quantity evangelistic programs. Perhaps the allegations that have at times surfaced in the past of gays serving as resident deans in our academies and colleges may have been too true. When this writer has in the past heard of such gossip, he has seriously questioned its veracity because of personal experience he has had. In the Florence, Mississippi, area where we lived for ten years, there was a teacher who was a strict disciplinarian, and who made the boys behave even in their rest room behaviour. So to get rid of the teacher, someone wrote in big letters on the sidewalk in front of the church school - "Mr. ------ is a homosexual." It accomplished its purpose - the teacher left. No proof could be produced which justified the slander and libel. The character of the teacher was above reproach.
1980 Dec XIII - 12(80) -- THIS WE BELIEVE -- There comes a time when an individual and/or a corporate identity must take a stand, unfurl their colors, and let everyone know just what they believe. We believe that time has now come. The Bible and the Bible only, must be the basis for such a stand, for it is the Word of God, which is truth. (John 17:17) It is this, that is the issue in the great controversy between Christ and Satan. Jesus declared that the devil "abode not in the truth." (John 8:44) Any departure, therefore, from the truth is to place one's self, and/or a corporate body on the side of the devil. It is just that simple.
The Holy Spirit was sent into this world as the Spirit of Truth. "His work is to define and maintain the truth." (DA, p. 671) To formulate - "to define" under the direction of the Holy Spirit what one believes to be truth is to produce a Statement of Beliefs. How does the Holy Spirit speak to us, thus enabling us to formulate a definitive statement of what we believe? "Through the Scriptures the Holy Spirit speaks to the mind, and impresses truth upon the heart. Thus He exposes error, and expels it from the soul. It is by the Spirit of truth, working through the word of God, that Christ subdues His chosen people to Himself." (Ibid.)
The power of pure truth dare not be under estimated. "Truth is sacred, divine. It is stronger and more powerful than anything else in the formation of a character after the likeness of Christ... When it is cherished in the heart the love of Christ is preferred to the love of any human being. This is Christianity. This is the love of God in the soul. Thus pure, unadulterated truth occupies the citadel of the being." (IHP, p. 140) In fact "the righteousness of Christ is pure, unadulterated truth." (TM, p. 65) To follow any other course than that dictated by pure truth is to bring an individual and/or a corporate body under the power of Satan, for "it is through false theories and traditions Satan gains his power over the mind." (DA, op. cit.)
While the enemy seeks to blur the lines between truth and error, and cause his traditions and heresies to appear to be truth, the mind that is worked by the Spirit of truth will be able to discern clearly that which is truth. Those whose minds are worked by the Spirit, and thus perceive truth do not blend their lives with those who are propagating error like the colors of the rainbow. They are as distinct as midday and midnight. The time has come for the last generation of "the faithful few" to do even as the faithful few did in the first generations of Christianity. Those primitive Christians took a stand for truth. Of their decision it is written:
p 2 -- After a long and severe conflict, the faithful few decided to dissolve all union with the apostate church if she still refused to free herself from falsehood and idolatry. They saw that separation was an absolute necessity if they would obey the word of God. They dared not tolerate errors fatal to their own souls ... To secure peace and unity they were ready to make any concession consistent with fidelity to God; but they felt that even peace would be too dearly purchased at the sacrifice of principle. If unity could be secured only by the compromise of truth and righteousness, then let there be difference, and even war. (GC, p. 45)
With this thought paper, we conclude thirteen years of publication in which we have lifted our voice as a trumpet warning the professed people of God of the apostasy which has been growing darker and deeper within the "Jerusalem which now is, and is in bondage with her children." (Gal. 4:25) It has now reached a climax in the Statement of Beliefs formulated at the 1980 General Conference Session. Only the truth committed to the trust of God's people in the period following 1844 can make us free, when "light was given that helped us to understand the Scriptures in regard to Christ, His mission, and His priesthood." (Spec. Test., Series B, #2, p. 57)
Before formulating what we believe to be a statement of truth for these final times of human history, let it be clearly understood that we are not calling for a new human organization - for a new church to be organized - this cannot be! God's true people - the living saints to be translated without seeing death - will be children of that "New Mother," which is the Jerusalem which is above (Gal. 4:26) for on their foreheads will be written the name of God, New Jerusalem, and Jesus own new name. (Rev. 3:12, EW, p. 15) These children of the "New Mother" will fellowship together, there is no question about that; but they will not be bound by human organization, for they will bow to no other gods than the God of heaven whose name is written upon them. They will be "firmly united, bound together by the truth, in bundles, or companies." (EW, pp. 88-89) As the basis of the "firm platform" of truth upon which these companies can stand, we submit the following statement of belief formulated from the earliest statements of belief published by the once "faithful city." (8T:250)
This We Believe:
I. That the Holy Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments were given by inspiration of God, contain a full revelation of His will to man, and are the only infallible rule of faith and practice. 1 (I Tim. 3:15-17; I Peter 1:25.)
II. That there is one God, a personal, spiritual being, the creator of all things, omnipotent, omniscient, and eternal; infinite in wisdom, holiness, justice, goodness, truth, and mercy; unchangeable, and everywhere present by His representative, the Holy Spirit. 1 (Deut 6:4; Eph. 4:6; I Tim. 6:15-16; Ps. 139:7-10)
That there is one Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of the Eternal Father, the
one by whom God created all things, and by whom they do consist; that
He took upon Himself the seed of David for the redemption of our fallen
race; that He dwelt among men, full of grace and truth, lived our example,
died our sacrifice, was raised for our justification, ascended on high
to be our only Mediator in the
p 3 -- sanctuary in heaven, where, with His own blood He makes atonement for our sins, thus securing pardon and forgiveness for all who penitently come to Him; and as the closing portion of His work as High Priest, before He takes His throne as king, He will make the final atonement for the sins of those pardoned, and their sins will then be blotted out, and borne away from the sanctuary, as shown in the Levitical priesthood, which foreshadowed and prefigured the ministry of our Lord in heaven. 2 (I Cor. 8:6; Eph. 3:9; Rom. 1:3; John 1:14; I Peter 2:21; Isa. 53:6; Heb. 9:12 RSV; Heb. 8:4-5; Lev. 16)
IV. That baptism is an ordinance of the Christian church, to follow faith and repentance, - an ordinance by which we commemorate the resurrection of Christ, as by this act we show our faith in His burial and resurrection, and through that, in the resurrection of all saints at the last day; and no other mode more fitly represents these facts than that which the Scriptures prescribe, namely, immersion. 1 (Rom. 6:3-5; Col. 2:12; Acts 8:38)
V. That all have violated the law of God, and cannot of themselves render obedience to its just requirements; that we are dependent on Christ, first, for justification from our past offenses, and, secondly, for grace whereby to render acceptable obedience to His holy law now. 1 (Rom. 3:23-26; 8:3-4; Eph. 2:8-10)
VI. That as the natural or carnal heart is as enmity with God and His law, this enmity can be subdued only by a radical transformation of the affections, the exchange of unholy for holy principles; that this transformation follows repentance and faith, and is the special work of the Holy Spirit. 1 (Romans 8:7; Jer. 13:23; Rom. 8:11)
VII. That the new birth comprises the entire change necessary to fit us for the kingdom of God, and consists of two parts: first, a moral change, wrought by conversion and a Christian life; second, a physical change at the second coming of Christ, whereby, if dead, we are raised incorruptible, and if living, are changed to immortality in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye. 1 (John 3:3,5; Titus 2:11-13; I Cor. 15:51-54)
VIII. That God's moral requirements are the same upon all men in all dispensations; that they are summarily contained in the commandments spoken by Himself from Sinai, engraven on the tables of stone, and deposited in the ark, which was in consequence called the "ark of the covenant," or testament (Num. 10:33; Heb. 9:4); that this law is immutable and perpetual, being a transcript of the tables deposited in the ark in the true sanctuary on high, which is also, for the same reason, called the ark of God's testament; for under the sounding of the seventh trumpet we are told that "the temple of God was opened in heaven, and there was seen in His temple the ark of His testament." Rev. 11:19. 1 (Exodus 20:1-17; Ps. 19:7; Rom. 3:31; Deut. 4:12-13)
IX. That the fourth commandment of this Law requires that we devote the seventh day of each week, commonly called Saturday, to abstinence from our labor, and to the performance of sacred and religious duties; that this is the only weekly Sabbath known in the Bible, being the day that was set apart before Paradise was lost (Gen. 2:2-3), and which will be observed in Paradise restored (Isa. 66:22-23); that the facts upon which the Sabbath institution is based confine it to the seventh day, as they are not true of any other day; and that the terms Jewish
p 4 -- Sabbath, as applied to the seventh day, and Christian Sabbath as applied to the first day, are names of human invention, unscriptural in fact, and false in meaning. 1 (Exodus 20:8-11; Mark 2:27-28; Hebrews 4:4, 9-10)
X. That as the man of sin, the Papacy, has thought to change times and laws (the law of God, Dan. 7:25), and has misled all Christendom in regard to the fourth commandment, we find in prophecy a world-wide movement predicted, symbolized by the three angels of Revelation 14 which will restore the knowledge of the true Sabbath, and call men's attention to the papal power, with all of its abominations, warning that whosoever receives the mark of this power by accepting its substitute day of worship will suffer the wrath of God in the Seven Last Plagues to be visited on mankind just prior to the second coming of Christ. 3 (Rev. 14:6-14; 16)
XI. That prophecy is a part of God's revelation to man; that it is included in that Scripture which is profitable for instruction (II Tim. 3:16); that it is designed for us and our children (Deut. 29:29); that so far from being enshrouded in impenetrable mystery, it is that which especially constitutes the word of God a lamp to our feet and a light to our path (Ps. 119:105; II Peter 1:19); that a blessing is pronounced upon those who study it (Rev. 1:1-3); and that, consequently, it is to be understood by the people of God sufficiently to show them their position in the world's history and the special duties required at their hands. 1
XII. That the sanctuary of the new covenant is the tabernacle of God in heaven, of which Paul speaks in Hebrews 8, and onward, of which our Lord, as the great High Priest, is minister; that this sanctuary is the antitype of the Mosaic tabernacle, and that the priestly work of our Lord, connected therewith, is the antitype of the work of the Jewish priests of the former dispensation (Heb. 8:1-5, &c.); that this is the sanctuary to be cleansed at the end of the 2300 days (Dan 8:14), what is termed its cleansing being in this case, as in the type, simply the entrance of the high priest into the most holy place, to finish the round of service connected therewith, by making the atonement and removing from the sanctuary the sins which had been transferred to it by means of the ministration in the first apartment (Lev. 16; Heb. 9:22,23); and that this work in the antitype, beginning in 1844, consists in actually blotting out the sins of believers (Acts 3: 19), and occupies a brief but indefinite space of time, at the conclusion of which the work of mercy for the world will be finished and the second advent of Christ will take place. 4
XIII a. That the time of the cleansing of the sanctuary [commencing in 1844] synchronizing with the time of the proclamation of the Third Angel's Message (Rev. 14: 9-10), is a time of investigative judgment, first, with reference to the dead, and secondly, at the close of probation, with reference to the living, to determine who of the myriads now sleeping in the dust of the earth are worthy of a part in the first resurrection, and who of its living multitudes are worthy of translation, points which must be determined before the Lord appears. l (Rev. 22:11-12; Daniel 7:9-10, 13-14)
XIII b. That the followers of Christ should be a peculiar people, not following the maxims, nor conforming to the ways, of the world; not loving its pleasures nor countenancing its follies; inasmuch as the apostle says that "whosoever therefore will be" in this sense, "a friend of the world, is the enemy of God" (James 4:4);
p 5 -- and we are admonished, "Love not the world, neither things that are in the world." 5 (I John 2:15)
XIV. That the Scriptures insist upon plainness and modesty of attire as a prominent mark of discipleship in those who profess to be the followers of Him who was "meek and lowly in heart," that the wearing of gold, pearls, and costly array, or anything designed merely to adorn the person and foster pride of the natural heart, is to be discarded. 5 (I Tim. 2:9-10; I Peter 3:3-4)
XV. That the means for the support of evangelical work among men should be contributed from love to God and love of souls, not raised by church functions designed to contribute to the fun-loving, appetite-indulging propensities of the sinner; that the proportion of one's income required in former dispensations can be no less under the gospel, being the same as Abraham paid to Melchisedec when he gave him a tenth of all (Heb. 7:1-4); that this tithe is the Lord's (Lev. 27:30), and this tenth of one's income is to be supplemented by offerings as one is able for the support of the gospel. 5 (II Cor. 9:6; Mal. 3:8-10)
XVI. That the Spirit of God was promised to manifest itself in the church through certain gifts; that these gifts are not designated to supercede, or take the place of, the Bible, which is sufficient to make us wise unto salvation, any more than the Bible can take the place of the Holy Spirit; that, in specifying the various channels of its operation, that Spirit has simply made provision for its own existence and presence with the people of God to the end of time, to lead to an understanding of that word which it had inspired, to convince of sin, and to work a transformation in the heart and life; and that those who deny to the Spirit its place and operation, do plainly deny that part of the Bible which assigns to it this work and position . (I Cor. 12:28; Eph. 4:8, 11-15; Rev. 12:17)
XVII. That the grave, whither we all tend, expressed by the Hebrew word sheol, and the Greek word hades, is a place, or condition, in which there is no work, device, wisdom, nor knowledge; that the state to which we are reduced by death is one of silence, inactivity, and entire unconsciousness. 1 (Eccl. 9:5-6; 10; Ps. 146:4; John 11:11-14)
XVIII. That out of this prison-house of the grave, mankind are to be brought by a bodily resurrection; the righteous having part in the first resurrection, which takes place at the second coming of Christ; the wicked, in the second resurrection, which takes place one thousand years later. 1 (John 5:28-29; Rev. 20:4-6)
XIX. That the second coming of Christ is the great hope of the church, the grand climax of the gospel and plan of salvation; that this coming will be literal, personal, and visible; that when this takes place, the living saints, changed in a moment at the twinkling of an eye, and the risen righteous will be caught up together to meet the Lord in the air, to be forever with Him. 6 (John 14:3; I Thess. 4:16-17; I Cor. 15:51-54)
XX. That the saints of all ages are taken by Jesus Christ to heaven, to the New Jerusalem, the Father's house, in which there are many mansions (John 14:1-3), where they reign with Christ a thousand years, judging the world and fallen angels, that is, apportioning the punishment to be executed upon them at the close of the one thousand years (Rev. 20:4; I Cor. 16:2-3); that during this time the earth lies
p 6 -- in a desolate and chaotic condition (Jer. 4:23-27), described, as in the beginning, by the Greek term abussos - (abussoV) "bottomless pit" (LXX of Gen. 1:2); and that here Satan is confined during the thousand years (Rev. 20:1-2), and here finally destroyed (Rev. 20:10; Mal. 4:1); the theater of the ruin he has wrought in the universe being appropriately made, for a time, his gloomy prison-house, and then the place of his final execution. 1
XXI. That at the end of the thousand years the Lord descends with His people and the New Jerusalem (Rev. 21:2), the wicked dead are raised, and come up on the surface of the yet unrenewed earth, and gather about the city, the camp of the saints (Rev. 20:9), and fire comes down from God out of heaven and devours them. They are then consumed, root and branch (Mal. 4:1) becoming as though they had not been. (Obad. 15-16) In this everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, the wicked meet the "everlasting punishment" threatened against them (Matt. 25:46), which is everlasting death (Rom. 6:23; Rev. 20:14-15). This is the perdition of ungodly men, the fire which consumes them being the fire for which "the heavens and the earth, which are now, ... are kept in store," which shall melt even the elements with its intensity, and purge the earth from the deepest stains of the curse of sin (II Peter 3:7-12). 1
XXII. That the new heavens and a new earth shall spring by the power of God from the ashes of the old, and this renewed earth, with the New Jerusalem for its metropolis and capital, shall be the eternal inheritance of the saints, the place where the righteous shall dwell evermore. 1 (Rev. 21:1-5; 22:1-6)
A Declaration of the Fundamental Principles Taught and Practiced Seventh-day
Adventists, 1972, and "Fundamental Principles of Seventh-day
Adventists," 1889 Yearbook. (Identical in both, except for
minor wording and punctuation.)
p 7 -- AN INVITATION -- We invite all who can subscribe to these fundamental principles of belief to join in a Movement for the restoration of the primitive faith and godliness committed to our trust. We invite you to lift your voice in warning the professed people of God of the necessity of maintaining the "firm platform" raised for the Advent Movement from its beginnings. We invite all to place their lives and sacred honor behind this Movement, along with all their talents, be it the talent of means, or the talent of voice or pen to enter upon a work as prophesied to reprove, counsel, and entreat (5T:210) that "some" may respond and renounce the apostasy everywhere prevalent in the midst of the corporate body. We would suggest that each in whatever community he or she resides seek those who share this objective and come together for prayer and study each week, remembering the promise of Jesus that where two or three are gathered together in His name, He is in the midst of all such.
CURRENT ISSUES -- In the 1872 Declaration of Fundamental Beliefs, and in the 1889 Yearbook were articles of belief which set forth the mistake of Adventists in 1844 as to the nature of the event which was to transpire at the close of the 2300 days of Dan. 8:14; and the doctrine of the world's conversion and a temporal millennium. These we omitted in writing out "What We Believe" because there are no longer relevant today. However, there are current issues which were not covered in the earlier statements, topics to which we should give study. We shall list these with suggestive Scriptures, quotations from the Spirit of Prophecy, and comments:
Is the Church?
of Prophecy -
p 8 -- witnesses into covenant relation with Himself, uniting the church on earth with the church in heaven. (AA, p. 11)
Comment: The word - church - in the New Testament is translated from the Greek word - ekklhsia - which means - "called out." The Church of which Christ is the head is composed of people who have been called out. From what? Various circumstances relating to the church in the New Testament history and prophecy reveal from what she is called. This with the typology found in the Old Testament should be the basis for a study in depth on the question "What is the Church?"
What Channels Should the Lord's Means Flow?
Comment: "The house of God" - "my house" - is defined as "the pillar and ground of the truth" (I Tim. 3:15). This must be the first determination as to where the Lord's means are to go. Secondly, those servants who provide for the household "meat in due season" are alone blessed of heaven, and worthy of those funds designated for the Lord's use.
of Prophecy -
A position paper is badly needed on the subject
of tithes and offerings. A
good basis for a start would be to use the unpublished manuscript written
by Elder Henry F. Brown, retired, who served in the General Conference
Home Missionary Department. His paper is titled - "The Development
of the Adventist Financial Organization." The ultimate in this development
came when the officers of the General Conference through "the controlling
committee decided in 1967 to retain professional investment counsel ...
p 9 -- ... Lionel D. Edie & Company, Inc., of New York City, was chosen to be the research, analysis, and selection of securities for the General Conference portfolio." (Spectrum, Vol. 5, No. 2, p.. 52) In other words, in 1967, the hierarchy of the Church began playing the stock market in earnest with the money of the laity.
Is There Original Sin?
of Prophecy -
The impossibility of man to attain to the righteousness,
or holiness required of him is clearly set forth in the Scripture. "Can
the Ethiopian change his skin, or the leopard his spots? then may ye also
do good, that are accustomed to do evil." (Jer. 13:23) "We are
all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags."
(Isa. 64:6) As Paul quotes - "There is none righteous, no, not one."
(Rom. 3:10) "Divine grace is needed at the beginning, divine grace
at every step of advance, and divine grace alone can complete the work."
10 -- Is Prophecy Still Being fulfilled?
This verse does not say that all fulfillment of prophecy is to end in
1844, but rather it will shine as a light "in a dark place, until
the day dawn." We have misinterpreted the statement that - "Time
has not been a test since 1844, and it will never again be a test."
(EW, p. 75) It is "time" that is
of Prophecy -
Comment: This can hardly mean the first rays of Christ's manifested glory at the second advent, for "Every eye shall see Him." (Rev. 1:7) It is the light that shines in a dark place until the day dawn. We have much reading, hearing, and study to do that we might be blessed. (Rev. 1:3) --- (1980 Dec) ---End----