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.
last of WWN published
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
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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Any portion of the thought paper may be reproduced without further permission by adding the credit line - "Reprinted from WWN, Victoria, BC Canada."
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WWN 1991 Apr - Jun
1991 Apr -- XXIV -- 4(91) -- Clanton, Alabama, SDA Church versus Charles Wheeling -- THE DEFENDANT'S CASE -- In the previous issue of WWN (XXIV-3, p. 6),mentioned receiving a packet of material which contained Charles Wheeling's defense for his forthcoming Church trial. The issue is primarily over the method of interpretation which he uses in the analysis and projection of Bible prophecy. His hermeneutic is in direct opposition to the method of interpretation which has been used by the Church in its understanding of Bible prophecy.
The packet we received also included the Church' s answer to Wheeling's teachings. I doubt that would have been included in his packet as circulated to the members of the Clanton, Alabama, Seventh-day Adventist Church, but was added for our information. We will comment on this following the review of Wheeling's defense materials.
Among the material circulated by Wheeling were copies of letters taken from his "fan mail." These have no value unless one knows who wrote them, and is thus able to evaluate the writer's ability and qualifications to accurately assess Wheeling's interpretations. Anyone who publishes knows that the response to what one writes is not always favorable. "Fan mail" only fans the human ego. It is the negative reply which challenges one's thinking that has corrective value. lt seems quite naive for Wheeling to include as a part of his defense "personal letters and responses...regarding his message."
He does include "significant statements from the pen of Ellen White." It would seem that certain counsel which he quotes has served to motivate him to go to the lengths he has gone in interpreting the prophecies. One such quote will illustrate. It reads:
p 2 -- Like
the first disciples, William Miller and his associates did not, themselves,
fully comprehend the import of the messages they bore. Errors that
had been long established in the church prevented them from arriving at
a correct interpretation of an important point in prophecy. (Emphasis
notes the source of this quote as Maranatha, p. 16, but it is
in reality from The Great Controversy, pp. 351-352.
This is a bit strange in the light of the fact that he is now giving this
book wide distribution. Does he really not know what is in the book he
is distributing? Hardly. Did he realize that to document it from its original
source would reveal that he was using the reference out of context? "The
errors that had been long established in the church" was not referring
to the Seventh-day Adventist Church.
lt is true that Ellen
G. White did not consider the truth as conveyed to the Church in sacred
trust to be static, but rather an on-going progression. This means that
corrections will be made, and errors sifted out. however, she set ihe
perimeter and the goal to be achieved. On March
30, 1897, she wrote: The
Lord has made His people the repository of sacred truth. Upon every individual
who has the light of present truth devolves the duty of developing that
truth on a higher scale than it has hitherto been done. (Emphasis
Observe, it says
it is our duty to develop "that truth" - not, the advancing
of some fanciful speculation. And it is even possible that in such a development,
errors could be discovered within the Writings themselves since Ellen
White did not claim infallibility. The "sacred truth" committed
to God's people was a deeper understanding of the Bible both in prophetic
interpretation, and theological perceptions than had marked the Protestant
Reformation. But this does not mean that when we come to the study of
prophecy we discard the basic method of interpretation used by the Reformers
and substitute in its place the method set forth by the Jesuits. Wheeling's
motives may have been good, but his lack of scholarship plunged him into
the abyss of error.
Passing from the
"quotes" from the Writings, Wheeling next bases his defense
on "Important research on prophetic interpretations done by Seventh-day
Adventist ministers, laymen, [and] scholars." In support of this,
he submits two articles from Spectrum, the official organ of the
Association of Adventist Forums (AAF). He urges - "Please become
acquainted with Spectrum." This is a good suggestion, but
for what purpose? To accept what it teaches, to be knowledgeable as to
what is being taught by the liberal wing of the Seventh-day Adventist
Church? We dare not forget that it was from the podium provided by the
AAF that Dr. Desmond Ford launched his attack on the sanctuary teaching
of the Church. Not only this, but also the AAF questions the whole fabric
of Creationism as taught in the Scriptures.
In an article in
(Feb. 9, 1990), Kenneth R. Samples of the Christian Researeh Institute,
accurately pinpoints the "roots" of this liberal element in
the Church. He wrote: Liberal
Adventism comes out of that church's attempt to achieve theological and
cultural respectability. In the 1950s and 1960s, many Adventist students
began receiving graduate degrees from non-Adventist universities. In many
cases, the schools attended by these Adventists were theologically liberal.
Thus, Adventist scholars were influenced by modern biblical criticism
and liberal theology. (p. 21)
-- Some students and teachers attended graduate schools with an
evangelical orientation. Thus there has been a mingling between the two
groups, not because of theological agreement, but primarily because of
the scholastic level each has attained.]
In closing his appeal
to become acquainted with Spectrum, Wheeling writes - "Truth
must and will prevail, brothers and sisters. Please read this material
of the two articles reproduced from Spectrum (Vol. 12, #4) asked
the question - Is Ellen White's Interpretation of Biblical Prophecy Final?
This article directed its primary focus on the interpretation of the seals
and trumpets in the book of Revelation. The brevity of each issue of WWN
prevents a complete analysis of any sizeable amount of material such as
Wheeling has included in his defense packet. One illustration must suffice
to reveal the quality of scholarship Wheeling has chosen for his study,
and whether it is truth or not.
The author of the article, Donald Casebolt, attacks the Millerite position on the sixth trumpet wherein Josiah Litch pinpointed the date of the demise of the Turkish power in 1840 based on the year-day principle of prophetic interpretation he applied to Revelation 9:15. Of this, Casebolt writes: The 1840 date has both exegetical and historical problems. Exegetically, tbe hour, day, month, and year of Revelation 9:15 refer to a point in time rather than a
p 3 -- period of time. (pp. 5; emphasis his)
In this verse,
the Greek article appears, only before "hour" of the series
of time designations. Further, each of the words, hour, day, month, and
year are in the Greek accusative case. First, consider the force of the
single article: Though not repeated, it belongs to each noun of this time
series. All are connected by the particle, kai. This fact demands
that the four time symbols be combined as one period, a sum total of prophetic
days added together. S.
G. Green in his Handbook of the Grammar of the Greek Testament,
states the principle. It reads: In
the enumeration of several persons or things, joined by a connective particle,
an article before the first only, intimates a connection between
the whole, as forming one object of thought. This is termed, "combined
enumeration." (p. 198)
When the force of
the Greek accusative is added to this, which denotes duration, rather
than punctiliar action, Casebolt's assumption is completely discredited.
The noted Greek grammarian, A. T. Robertson, has written plainly -
"The accusative when used of time expresses duration over the period,..."
(A Grammar of the Greek New Testament, p. 495)
Historical Data -- The third item in Wheeling's defense concerns "Historical data." In this section, he questions the terminal date for the prophecy of the 1260 days found in both Daniel and Revelation. He asks the question - "Did Papal rule end in 1798? Or did it end in 1797? Perhaps 1799? Then he submits a page from the Encyclopedia Britannica, supposedly verifying the 1799 date. The paragraph in question from the Encyclopedia reads: Pius [VI] was on good terms with the allies against the French in 1793 and felt that he could rely on them, but in 1796 his territory was invaded after the last Austrian defeat by Napoleon who forced the Pope to sign a peace treaty at Tolentino on Feb. 19, 1797. In the following December, a riot in Rome led to French occupation of that city on Feb. 15, 1798, and the proclamation of a republic by a group of Italian patriots. Pius and the Curia were expelled from Rome, and in March 1799 he was seized by the French. Aged and physically crippled, he died a prisoner. (1987 edition) *
What is the issue
in question, the Pope, or the government of the Papacy? Is the date for
the end of the temporal power of the Papacy, 1799, or 1798? The same
Encyclopedia (Vol. 17, p. 221, 1958 edition), states concerning the
reign of Pius VI - "the destruction of his temporal authority by
the armies of the [French] Revolution in 1798 and his death in captivity
the following year presaged a new epoch for the Papacy." Trevor,
Canon of York, writing about the events of the year, 1798, stated that
"the object of the French Directory was the destruction of the pontifical
government, as the irreconcilable enemy of the republic." (Quoted
in Facts of Faith, p. 59) The French General, Berthier, entered
Rome on the 10th of February, 1798, and on the 15th issued a formal declaration
establishing a Roman Republic. The declaration stated that "every
other temporal authority emanating from the old government of the Pope,
is suppressed, and it shall no more exercise any function." (The
Prophetic Faith of Our Fathers, Vol. II, p. 756) Little wonder then
that Trevor could
write of the events in 1798:
The Papacy was extinct: not
a vestige of its existence remained; and among all the Roman Catholic
powers not a finger was stirred in its defence. The Eternal City had no
longer prince nor pontiff; its bishop was a dying Captive in foreign lands;
and the decree was already announced that no successor would be allowed
in his place. (Facts of Faith, op.Cit.)
The same record on Pius VI in the 1958
edition reads: Pius
was on good terms with the allies against France in 1793 and felt that
he could rely on them; but in 1796 he saw his territory invaded by Gen.
Napoleon Bonaparte. He sued for peace, which was granted on Feb. 19, 1797,
at Tolentino; but in the following December a riot in Rome, in which the
French general L.Duphot was killed, led to the occupation of Rome itself
(Feb.15,1798) and the proclamation of a republic. Pius was taken into
captivity and died, still a prisoner, at Valence, on Aug. 29, 1799. (Vol.
17, p 983)
Wheeling says those
who question the record in the 1987 edition charge that the Encyclopedia
Britannica is "a Roman Catholic encyclopedia." There was
an altering of the text of the encyclopedia between 1958 and 1987. The
preciseness of fact involving the dates,1797, 1798, and 1799, was removed.
Who influenced the blurring? Who would be interested in such a blurring?]
A Summary -- Wheeling's defense is weak when one carefully studies key points in the data he has submitted. Ellen G. White does teach that we should advance in the perception of truth which would
p 4 -- surely
include the freeing of "that truth" from any vestige of error.
But she did not suggest that we alter truth, and declare truth to be error.
To base one's message on the research of other men - even though they
may be sincere men - without checking that research by the Word of God
with all the available tools of scholarship, is to lean on the arm of
flesh. The historical data submitted falls to take into account the complete
picture of all the facts of the submitted evidence, and thus leads to
a faulty conclusion.
What went wrong with
Wheeling? He claims that his conclusions are the result of "more
than 25 years of serious study and prayerful reflection." Did he
study the wrong things? Perhaps. Did he lack the spirit of discernment
to be able to distinguish truth from error in the things he did study?
Possible. Did he lack the tools of scholarship so as to adequately get
to the bottom of the issues? Maybe. Or did he reject truth, and God permitted
strong delusion to overcome him? (II Thess. 2:10-11) Only the Lord knows,
but the evidence is strongly suggestive that when a human being comes
to know more than the angel Gabriel knows as to the meaning of the symbols
given in vision to Daniel, a power other than the Spirit of truth is controlling
that person's mind.
to Charles Wheeling's teachings consists of two documents: one, prepared
by Russell Burrill, Director of the North American Division's Institute
of Evangelism, and a second written by Garland Cross, a former church
school teacher and local elder of the Clanton, Alabama, Seventh-day Adventist
Church, who is now serving in the same capacities at the Bass Academy
Church in Mississippi.
The document by Burrill
is concise - 18 pages in length. The protracted manuscript of Cross's
- 52 pages - follows page after page a consistent format, a quote from
"Charles" taken from a transcript, and then an "Answer."
A contrast is immediately observable between the two answers besides just
the lengths of the manuscripts. In his conclusion, Burrill asks a question
- "What is the Adventist answer to Charles Wheeling?" Then he
answers his own question - "The Bible and the Bible only." On
the whole, Burrill is consistent with this criterion, but Cross's lengthy
discussion is the antithesis of this, and for the most part uses nothing
but the Writings to reply to certain of Wheeling's positions. There are
some exceptions where technical linguistic data is discussed, or where
reference is made to historical events.
The reason why this
factor is acute needs to be noted and understood. Wheeling - and Desmond
Ford as well - hold that the Adventist position on the sanctuary and its
relationship to Daniel 7 & 8 cannot be verified from the Bible, but
can be sustained only from the Writings of Ellen G. White. Burrill notes
this position of Wheeling. Using a transcript of one of Wheeling's presentations,
a conversation he tells between himself and "a good friend"
is quoted. The friend of Wheeling observed - "You said that the twenty-three
hundred years cannot be proven from the Bible. That it's in the Spirit
of Prophecy." To this Wheeling replied - "That is exactly correct."
This issue of the basis for the Adventist understanding of both the prophecies
of Daniel and the typical services of the sanctuary, whether based in
the Bible, or solely in the Writings illustrates the crisis in theology
in the Church. But this same factor pervades the teachings and publications
of those on the right wing periphery of Adventism who professedly abhor
the "new theology" represented in Ford's teachings. Instead
of answering Ford - and now Wheeling - from the Bible, they prefer to
quote the Writings. This is a tragic deception being foisted on God's
concerned people by those professing to stand on a firm foundation. Our
doctrine regarding the antitypical Day of Atonement, and the prophecies
of Daniel involved therewith, should be sustained by the Bible and the
Bible only. To do this is not a rejection of the work assigned to Ellen
G. White as a "messenger of the Lord," but rather in harmony
with her own counsel in this matter.
Cross discusses Wheeling's position on Daniel 8:14, answering him first with a quote from The Great Controversy followed by several paragraphs from Clifford Goldstein's book, 1844 Made Simple. The paragraphs quoted from Goldstein's book start off well, showing the use of the same word for "cleansed" in the LXX in both Lev. 16:30 and Daniel 8:14. Then the statement is made: "Clearly, the translators of the Septuagint [LXX] saw a link between the taher [Hebrew, ' cleansed ' in Lev. 16] and the
p 5 -- tsadaq
! [The Hebrew word for ' cleansed ' in Daniel 8:14 KJV.]"
This is pure assumption which cannot be verified linguistically. Strong's
questionable lexicons connected with his Concordance, quoted by
Goldstein, is just as inaccurate here as in other places. The two Hebrew
words, taher and
tsadaq, when checked with such standard works as Gesenius and
Brown-Driver-Briggs' edited edition of Gesenius' A Hebrew and English
Lexicon of the Old Testament reveal no connection by which to associate
Daniel 8:14 with Leviticus 16. It is the Masoretic text of the Old Testament
which uses tsadaq
in Daniel 8:14 in its Niphal form, which in that form means - "be
justified, its cause vindicated." (p. 842) The word, taher,
found in the Hebrew text on Lev. 16:30 means, "made clean."
What Goldstein has
done is to assume that the translators of the LXX, who worked and lived
before Christ, translated from a Hebrew text which was not produced till
900 years after Christ! While the Hebrew manuscripts upon which the Masoretlc
text was based were no doubt extant from the first century A.D., it cannot
be assumed that such a text was used by the translators of the LXX. In
fact, Hebrew scholarship today indicates that the whole of the Book of
Daniel was originally written in Aramaic, which had been made the official
language of the Persian Empire, and that parts of it were translated into
the Hebrew. These same Hebrew scholars show that the use of the Hebrew
word, tsadaq for
the original Aramaic of Daniel 8:14 was a gross mistranslation into the
Hebrew. These scholars hold that the Aramaic word meant "cleansed."
See Studies in Daniel, Chapter V, "The Hebrew of Daniel as
a Transiation," by H. Louis Ginsberg, Sabato Morais Professor of
Bible at the Jewish Theological Seminary of America.
Goldstein instead of doing original research on this point merely followed Gerhard Hasel whom he admits "speculates" on the use of the word, tsadaq, in the Masoretic text. I have personally talked to Hasel about the linguistic determinations of the Jewish scholars. He rejects these men's research because of their interpretations of the prophecies of Daniel. This attitude lacks maturity. For example, an archeologist makes a find from an excavation project. He may make certain interpretations based on this find. Do I have to deny the find because I do not concur in his interpretations? This less than honest evaluation of all the factors involved with Daniel 8:14 does not enhance the position of Adventism, and those who are less than scholarly in their researcch play into the hands of Ford and Wheeling. Sadly this appears to be the type of scholarship dominating the thinking and work of the so-called "conservative" Adventist theologians.
There is another point that needs to be noted in the Church's actions. lt is true that the Clanton, Alabama, Seventh-day Adventist Church is an entity in itself within the body of the structure and has the power to determine who shall and who shall not be a member on the Clerk's roll. But how can the leadership of the Church condone such unilateral action as is contemplated by that local church and not recommend similar action where Dr. Desmond Ford and Dr. Robert Hauser still hold membership? The leadership of the Church needs to set its own house in order, and cut a straight line in dealing with these variant and heretical views on prophetic interpretation, plus other errant theological interpretations first, before dealing with individuals in "independent ministries" because of the "cash-flo" problem. Let us have truth, but not the use of truth to serve as a facade to cover up the lust for "greenbacks."
All Could Have Known -- In the January, 1985 issue of WWN, we called attention to the developing apostasy in prophetic interpretation which marked the expositions of both Dr. Robert W. Hauser and Charles Wheeling. The sub-heading of the lead artide read - "Hauser and Wheeling Follow Ford." The interpretation, which Ford calls "the apotelesmatic principle," defines that "a particular prophecy in outline, or as regards a dominate feature may have more than one application in time."
In August of 1984, Wheeling gave a week-end series of studies in the Gentry, Arkansas, Seventh-day Adventist Church. In one study, he discussed the four beasts of Daniel 7. He asked the congregation regarding the four kingdoms: Can you name them? Babylon, Medo-Persia, [Greece], and Rome. But we have some problems, and you need to be aware of them. Before I share the problems with you, I want to tell you that I subscribe to the historical application. and I preach it. However, I am also aware that the passage very likely has another application. And I think that you need to be aware of that. (Tape)
To clinch his emphasis
of a double application for Daniel 7, Wheeling
directed his listeners:
"Now I want
to ask Brother Wheeling something. Brother Wheeling take your Bible, and
"So that all
the readers might know the principles of grammar involved here, Gesenius'
states - 'In moods
and tenses it
[the Hebrew verb] is very poor, having only two tenses (Perfect
...' (p. 81, 1858 edition)" Further: The
name Imperfect is used in direct contrast with Perfect;...The
Hebrew Perfect denotes, in general, the finished and past, what
is come to pass or is gone into effect; but at the same time, that which
is represented as perfected, whether still in the present, or in
reality yet future. The Imperfect, on the contrary, denotes the
unfinished and continuing, that which is being done, or coming
to pass, and is future (hence called also Future); but also that which
is in progress and in connected succession, in past time. (ibid.
The Aramaic word,
koom, as used
in both Daniel 7:10 and 17 is in the imperfect
tense and in Daniel 7:17 carries the force of that which is being done,
in progress, extending from a point in the past - Babylon - into the future,
Rome and beyond.
p 6 -- LET'S TALK lT OVER -- After writing the comments on the "defense" which Charles Wheeling made in support of his position, my attention was called to page 1 of his "brief" whereon he had given in his judgment "significant statements from the pen of Ellen White." I had noted the quotation from The Great Controversy taken from the book, Maranatha. (See page 2) However, I did not check the quotation from A Word to the Little Flock (AWLF), because I did not believe that Wheeling would stoop to such a level as to attribute to Ellen White something she did not write for the sole purpose of seeking to strengthen his position. But he did! Then to transpose Ellen G. White's signature by layout techniques to the quotation is nothing less than raw deception and deceit. The letter to Brother Eli Curtis, dated April 21, 1847, ends on page 12 of AWLF, and Ellen White's name is printed at the bottom of the page. Page 13 from which Wheeling quotes can be assumed to have been written by James White as his name appears at the end of the booklet.
Why do men do such
things? lt had to have been purposely done because the evidence is too
clear to have unwittingly made such a mistake. Does Wheeling not use proof
readers to check what he has written? He must, but apparently they are
mere "lackies," devotees who no longer think for themselves,
or readers who, if they recognize such a glaring mistake, dare not question
the "oracle." This state of affairs can develop only when a
man assumes to know more about the significance of prophetic symbols than
the angel Gabriel who alone with Michael is privy to these things. This
is little short of blasphemy for a mere man to place his judgment above
a "ministering spirit" and a divine Being, such as Michael is!
One does not arrive
at this self deceived state overnight. lt is gradual, and often to the
individual an unperceived deviation from truth. Rejection of any ray of
light at any point of time dims one's perceptions of truth. Basking in
the adulation of devotees only adds to the exaltation of one's opinions
above the plain word of God. Yielding to the use of mind control on those
devotees often reacts back on the user, and his mind in turn becomes controlled
by a power beyond the human ken. The supreme tragedy occurs in what happens
to the souls thus deceived when they place one, who is self deceived,
as their "guru."
Consider for a moments
the ones who cast the ninety-nine votes on February 3, 1991, at the Clanton
Seventh-day Adventist Church. Forty-six voted to side with Wheeling. Of
this number, a proportion had to be family and those employed by Wheeling
in his Countdown Ministries. But there were some not in these categories
who voted for Wheeling against the Church's design. Why? They alone know
why they so voted; but it could not have been that they were supporters
of truth, because Wheeling's teachings are not truth. Were they then among
those who have been deceived into believing a lie? Or were they voting
against the Church, having become anti-church because of the controversy?
In such a case it would have been better if they had abstained.
What about the fifty
three who voted to sustain the desired objective of the Church? Here again
a proportion of these votes were by paid employees of the Church with
their families. But what about the others? Were they anti-Wheeling? Were
they pro-Church? lt could not have been altogether pro-truth, for some
of the Church's positions as set forth in their "briefs" were
just as weak as those held by Wheeling. What then is the bottom line?
Every individual will have to know for himself what is truth based on
the Sacred Scriptures. In the conflict upon which we are entering, whether
it be in the Clanton Seventh-day Adventist Church or some other Adventist
Church, "the faith of individual members of the church will be tested
as though there were not another person in the world." (Ms.
This is not a time
for men to be pigmies in what constitutes truth, but rather giants in
the Word of God. If such had been the case - "giants" in the
Clanton Church - the majority of the members would have left both the
warring factions to settle their own conflict, and would have walked out
to form a True and Free Seventh-day Adventist Church.
p 7 -- POSTSCRIPT-- While the above analysis was being written of the data involved in the trial of the SDA Church v. Charles Wheeling, a church business meeting of the Clanton Seventh-day Adventist Church was held. On Sunday, February 3, Charles Wheeling was disfellowshiped by a vote of 53 to 46. lt is obvious; the church split down the middle. The following Sabbath, the 9th, the two groups met separately with the Wheeling devotees meeting in the worship room of Countdown Ministries.
According to reliable sources, for the "trial" Wheeling had prepared a statement to read. He asked that following the reading of his statement the vote be taken. lt was so moved and voted. When Wheeling finished, the Pastor attempted to make a statement but was held to the motion. This a new twist to what is usual - the Church making their accusations, and the defendant denied a voice. It did save what could have been some emotional exchanges between the supporters of both sides. The Church achieved its objective but at a price.
Just prior to the
called business meeting of the Clanton Church, Elder Joe Crews got into
the act. He sent a letter pleading with Charles Wheeling to alter his
course. Copies of this letter were sent to the members of the Church.
A letter was also written by Dr. Mervyn Maxwell, author of the pro-Roman
Catholic book on Daniel, God Cares, Vol. 1. The Church used this
letter to bolster their position. When a church calls in such poles-apart
voices as Crews and Maxwell, confusion is compounded. Then when the "futurism"
of Wheeling is added to the melee, a veritable "Babel" results,
yet with each disputant believing he is still "the gate of God"
- the basic meaning of the word. (SeeYoung's Analytical Concordance.)
--- (1991 Apr) --- End --- TOP
1991 May -- XXIV -- 5(91) -- "OUTER DARKNESS" -- THE CUP JESUS DRANK -- Unique to the gospel of Matthew is the expression - "outer darkness" - in describing the punishment of the damned. Associated with this expression is the reaction of those consigned to that "outer darkness" - "there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth." The references in Matthew are: 8:11-12; 22:11-13; 25:30. We do well to observe carefully those whom Jesus said would be consigned to outer darkness.
8:11-12 reads: I
say unto you, That many shall come from the east and the west and shall
sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, in the kingdom of heaven.
But the children of the kingdorn shall be cast into outer darkness: there
shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
The third reference
in Matthew (25:30) concerns a servant to whom his employer entrusted his
goods. Though trusted, he proved unworthy. He was satisfied to hold it
in safe keeping that which was entrusted to him. He didn't squander it,
nor lose it. But neither did he enlarge it. He was satisfied with no growth.
He, too, was consigned to outer darkness.
p 2 -- associated
with the punishment of the wicked. It is simply "hell fire,"
the fire that comes down from God out of heaven and devours the wicked.
(Rev. 20:9) But why the two facets? - "furnace of fire" which
destroys the body, and "outer darkness." Jesus warned - "Fear
not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather
fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell." (Matt.
p 3 -- was His message anyway? Human nature wants no cost to self in whatever it does, but gain. But because Jesus would not save Himself, there is the power of His message. lt is our only hope.
us continue at the cross.
But this is not all there is to the cross. Death by crucifixion was a lingering death. You will recall that when Joseph of Arimathaea requested the body of Jesus, Pilate marveled "if He were already dead." He was so skeptical that he verified through the centurion the fact before releasing the body. (Mark 15:43-45) The simple fact is that the cross did not kill Jesus. He had declared during His ministry that He had authority to lay down His life. No man could take it from Him, but He would lay it down of Himself. (John 10:17-18) Luke records Jesus last words - "Father into Thy hands, I commend my Spirit." (Luke 23:46) He was "a divine spirit" dwelling "in a temple of flesh." (4BC:1147) He drank the "cup" - separation from His Father. There was a "sundering of the divine powers." (7BC:924) He offered Himself through the eternal Spirit (Heb. 9 :14), returning His Identity to the Father, and passed into "outer darkness." A divine sacrifice had been made for sin. The Son of God had given His "soul" as an offering for sin!
only can I relate - how should I relate to this great eternal sacrifice?
First, I must admit my state, and accept the only solution for my condition.
4 -- the apostasy.
is the solution? Jesus gave the answer. "If any man will come after
Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me. For whosoever
will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for
my sake shall find it." (Matt. 16:24-25) It is much more than a mere
theoretical assent, it is the denial of the very self. It is either that
this sin nature must go now in life, or I must go with it in the final
consignment. It cannot; it will not inherit the kingdom of God. "Knowing
this, that our old man is crucified with Him, that the body of sin might
be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin." (Rom. 6:6)
How can this be my experience? "I am crucified with Christ."
(Gal. 2:20) This crucifixion is renewed daily even as the morning and
evening sacrifice. (1 Cor. 15:31) But yet the text reads - "Nevertheless
I live." But how? - "I live by the faith of the Son of God."
Paul puts it this way - "Reckon ye also yourselves to be dead
indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord."
can study, we can talk about the 144,000. In their mouth is found no guile.
Their hearts have been washed in the blood of the Lamb, for out of the
abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh. What does it mean to strive
with all the power to be among that group? In a section of
Thoughts from the Mount of Blessing commenting on "Strive
to enter into the straight gate" is found the following: The
battle which we have to fight - the greatest battle that was ever fought
by man - is the surrender of self to the will of God, the yielding of
the heart to the sovereignty ot love. The old nature, born of blood and
the will of the flesh, cannot inherit the kingdom ot God ...
p 5 -- THE KEYS OF THIS BLOOD --
EXCERPTS -- A new world order is all but upon us, demanding a geopolitical structure in the immediate here and now. (p. 36)
Everyone who was a major player (in the struggle for world dominion) understood that structures were already being built that would soon enough include the world's every nation and race, its every culture and subgroup. John Paul knew that neither he nor anyone else could reverse that momentum....It had to be nothing less than a fight to capture the minds - to direct the very impetus of will - of men and women everywhere, at the unique moment when all the structures of civilization, including those of John Paul's Church, were being transformed into the framework that would not only house the new global society but shape everything about lt.
Within that unprecedented context, those closest to John Paul knew he had, and still does have, his own unwavering vision of the way human affairs will develop and climax....In other words, John Paul has a clear vision of our near-future world. (pp. 88, 89)
It is an open secret - especially since the 1981 attempt on the Pope's life - that not only the Italian secret services but at least three other governments participate in the most minute monitoring of John Paul: his comings and goings; his staff; his food; his clothes; who reaches him by letter and by phone, and whom he reaches; who sees him and why and for how long and what transpires between them. (pp. 120-121, emphasis supplied)
John Paul was asked toward the end of a private audience for visiting dignitaries in 1983. Can we expect Your Holiness to undertake many more of these papal visits to different parts of the world?" John Paul replied with candor. "Until as many men and women and children as I can reach have seen the face and heard the voice of Christ's Vicar; for I am their Pope, and this is what the Blessed Mother wishes her Son's Vicar to do." (p. 122)
Any world leader who discounts the eternal revelations on which papal power claims to be based flirts with problems. But at the same time, any world leader who takes the Roman Pontiff as possessing only the spiritual weapons of the unseen world and the afterlife with which to deal in practical, this-worldly matters
p 6 -- is making a strategic error of great proportions.(p. 132)
For the secular world, there are just two facts about the Holy See that are convincing: the fact that, in his person, the Roman Pontiff is the embodiment of the Holy See; and the fact that the organization he heads came at last, and alone, to fulfill all the prerequisites of a georeligious institution. These are the tangible truths that provide the Pope in secular eyes with the unique capability to act in and for the world community - to serve and tend mankind as one family - as it gropes its own way toward the borderless international plane on which he already - and prior to anyone else - stands. (p.137)
What captures the unwavering attention of the secular leaders of the world in this remarkable (papal) network of the Roman Catholic Church is precisely the fact that it places at the personal disposal of the Pope a supranational, supracontinental, supra-trade-bloc structure that is so built and orientated that if tomorrow or next week, by a sudden miracle, a one world government were established, the Church would not have to undergo any essential structural change in order to retain its dominant position and to further its global aims. (pp. 142-143)
And the Pope, as the sole legitimate head of the Holy See's organizational Institution and structures - as the only one who fixes the overall goal of that institution's efforts - is by definition the world's first fully fledged geopolitical leader. (p. 143)
But in the face of the geopolitical world, John Paul relies on the authority symbolized by those scarlet keys, the "Keys of this Blood." Precisely because of his unique power and status as head of that georeligious and geopolitical colossus, the Roman Catholic Church, his analysis of his secular counterparts has to be weighed into the balance of an accurate judgment of this extraordinary Pope. (p. 148)
Because it was only to Simon Peter, the chief of his Apostles, and to Simon Peter's lawful successors in the Holy See, that Jesus confided the Keys of his moral authority, the Roman Catholic Church has always claimed - and, under John Paul II, claims today - to be the ultimate arbiter of what is morally good and morally bad in human actions. (p. 157)
LET'S TALK IT OVER -- The essence of the gospel and man's relationship to that gospel as presented by Paul to the churches of Galatia is summarized in one verse: "I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live: yet not I but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave Himself for me." (Gal. 2:20)
We often concentrate on the meaning being crucified, yet living, but fail to note by what we live. It is not my faith in Jesus Christ, but "by the faith of the Son of God." The Eternal Word had such faith in humanity - His creation - that He so loved, and gave His life to be a ransom. When I sense that love, and behold the price He paid - even "outer darkness" - I am constrained. "The love of Christ constraineth us." (II Cor. 5:14) He had faith in me. I dare not let Him down.
I am a rebel at heart with an entrenched fallen nature. Most of my life has, whether admitted or not, reflected the rebellion against God. But there stands the record of His love for me: His faith in me - the Cross - that should I see, I will no longer continue in that rebellion. When I do see, what should I do? There is only one thing - surrender - I become a willing captive to the Lord Jesus Christ. His love; His sacrifice captivates me.
All who enter the gates of the City of God - the New Jerusalem - will be those who have surrendered to Jesus in the great controversy between Himself and Satan. We may talk much about the coming controversy. We may spend hours seeking to arrange all of the events in their proper sequence. But unless we begin at the right point in that controversy all of our chronological endeavors will be but vanity when the final showdown of human history arrives - that time to which we are rapidly approaching. It is much easier and far less humiliating to speculate on "the times and seasons" which "the Father has put in His own power," than to face the reality of our own hearts.
Many look upon the earthly conflict between Christ and Satan as "having no special bearing on their own life, and for
p 7 -- them it has little interest. But within the domain of every heart this controversy is being repeated." (DA, p. 117) This battle for our hearts is just "as real as those fought by the armies of this world, and on the issue of the spiritual conflict eternal destinies depend." (PK, p. 176) There is no truce, nor cease fire in this battle. The Cross demonstrated that fact. Jesus drank every drop of the cup. The only way out is to surrender, or remain with Satan. And the surrendered heart can only be cleansed by the blood of Jesus. No amount of human "suds and soap" will do it.
This does not end the battle, for once over on God's side, we are given weapons to join in the controversy under a different banner. We continue to battle with the "word of (our) own testimony" and into the heat of the battle we plunge "loving not our lives unto death." (Rev. 12:11) Here are the victors of earth; here are they who "keep. . . the faith of Jesus." They are constrained indeed by His love and His sacrifice - the cup He drank so that they need not drink.
The lead article - "Outer Darkness" - The cassette tape of the full message may be requested through this Adventist Laymen's Foundation. . --- (1991 May) --- End --- TOP
1991 Jun -- XXIV -- 6(91) -- A DEPLORABLE EDITORIAL -- In the March 2 1, 1991 issue of the Adventist Review, the editor-in-chief, Dr. William G. Johnsson wrote a most deplorable editorial. Taking off from the negative response received from an equally deplorable editorial written by Roy Adams back in the August 30, 1990 issue of the Review on government aid to subsidize parents with children in Church sponsored schools, Johnsson revealed policies of operation within the functioning of the editorial staff which underscores the drift in Adventism today.
First his defense of Adams: Johnsson wrote that Adams did not advocate direct aid to Adventist schools. This Is true. Adams just advocated the same kind of aid that the Roman Catholic Church advocates In Its attempt to breach the wall of separation of church and state. Adams used the very logic that the Roman Catholic bishops use to justify their request for such a government hand-out to help Catholic parents send their children to Catholic schools. Adams went so far as to suggest - "wouldn't it be prudent to make common cause with Catholics on this one issue and press the case together with our political representatives?"
Johnsson continues and asks a series of questions in a very revealing paragraph. He wrote: However, some people wonderer if the editorial carried a hidden agenda. Did the Review staff have a plan to alter the church's longstanding position with regard to church and state? Did the editorial signal a change coming from the administration? Even Christanity Today commented on tha editorial implications. "
Christanity Today (CT) did indeed comment on the "editorial implications" of what Adams had written. CT's Washington editor, Kim Lawton, used the Review editorial as the lead feature in an article on Church and State - "Disestablishing the 'Establishment Clause'?" Ms. Lawton wrote: Late this summer, the Adventist Review sent shock waves through the Seventh-day Adventist community by publishing an
p 2 --editorial that advocatod a "tax deduction or rebate" for parents who send their children to religious schools. In the editorial " Getting a Piece of Our Own Pie," writer Roy Adams described receiving in the mail on the same day his annual county school assessment and the bill for his children's tuition at the Adventist Academy. "Does it make sense at all to pay large dollars to send my neighbors' kids to school and then turn around and pay yet again to send my own children to church school, with no corresponding assistance from society a large?" he asked.
Adams' proposal was not now in the religious world. But it was startling But it was startling coming out of the Adventist community, which has traditionally favored a strict separation between church and state and opposed any type of government benefits for religion. An Adventist spokesman said the editorial does not signal wholsale change on the part of the denomination, but conceded it is indictative of growing internal tensions about the role of governrrert and religious education. (Nov. 5, 1990, p. 62)
Now note again the questions asked by Johnsson: "Did the Review staff have a plan to alter the church's longstanding position with regard to church and state? Did the editorial signal a change coming from the administration? "Nowhere in the editorial do we find these questions answered. It would have been clarifying just to have written, "There is no hidden agenda, and the staff had no plans to alter the church's position on separation of church and state, neither does this editorial signal any change in the Church's administration position." But the absence of such an affirmation opens the door to the fact that there is indeed "a hidden agenda." Besides in the CT article "an Adventist spokesman" said it did not signal " a "wholesale change," which means a change nevertheless of some consequence.
This deplorable editorial is simply an attempt to blunt the "shock waves" of Adams' desire for a piece of "pie" at taxpayer's expense; plus seeking to disassociate the Folkenberg administration from this editorial's thrust. This latter aspect is totally impossible. In the assignments of responsibilites to the General Vice Presidents, such as chairmanships of various boards and the oversight of the different departments of the General Conference, Folkenherg retained for himself the oversight of the Adventist Review. What he does in this instance, or does not do, will be a clear indication of the direction of the leadership in the Church, and can rrveal to the rank and file of the laity just what his principles, convictions, or lack of the same, really are.
Add to this picture, the admitted policy of the Review editorial staff, that each sees the other's editorials, prior to publication, and that "not infrequently editorials are modified along the way; occasionally one will be withdrawn and another substituted late, in the process." This states clearly that the editorial in question by Adams was seen and approved by the staff. Could not Johnsson have perceived the reaction which would come to such a blatant editorial. it is doubtful that he is that ignorant. He had to approve the release of such all editorial. He shouid be removed along with Adams from any further editorial responsibility, it should be done forthwith, and a cleaning up of the entire staff should quickly follow. Is Folkenberg man enough to do it? The issues are clear with no foggy "gray" area.
to broaden the distance between the editorial staff and the Church's administration,
that the present Adventist Review is not the "Official Organ
of the Seventh-day
To justify "a discreet distance" between the Adventist Review and the leadership of the Church, Johnsson indicates that the editors must be able to exercise "the prophetic note as the Lord impresses them." The Scripture indicates that first come "apostles" [administrators] and then "secondarily prophets." (1 Cor. 12:28) What is Johnsson actually trying to get across - that he and his staff are now the "prophetic voice" in the Church? !! Have the editors of the Adventist Review become the "spirit of prophecy "? But he closes the editorial with the sentence, referring to the editorials written - "They are essentially our own opinions. " Human opinions, as diabolical as Adams' editorial in August 1990, are now given the status of prophetic enlightment from the Lord! Unbelievable! How far has "Israel" fallen"!
Johnsson seeks further to enhance the standing of the editorial staff by indicating that "the six full time editors have earned a total of three
3 -- Ph.D.
degrees and nine Master's degrees." Two of the Ph,D's are held by
himself and Roy
Also on the editorial staff iIs a "News Editor" whose responsibility is to select the news the leaders are to be informed about (managed?) relative to events within and without of the Church. The news from without is gathered from various news services. In the same issue as the deplorable editorial by Johnsson one finds a news item on the "World's Most Translated Book." (p. 7) This is good, but with it was included a picture of three Bibles - a picture is worth a thousand words. One of the three was foreign language Bible, and the other two were English versions - the Good News Bible and the Revised English Bible. Eiither in the selection for the picture, or in the selection of the picture, something went wrong, accidently or otherwise. But with the mentality exhibited in Adams' editorial that we make common cause with the Catholics, it is hard to believe that the picture was an accident.
The Revised English Bible is an ecumenical Bible. It is "a radical revision of The New English Bible. " This new version was planned and directed by representatives of not only varlous Protestant churches, such as the Baptist, Methodist, Society of Friends, Moravian, Salvation Army, Reformed, and Church of England, but also, Roman Catholic Churches of England, Scotland, Wales and Ireland. It includes the Apocrypha. It is a continuing of the drift toward Rome begun with the publication of the English Revised Version in 1885.
In the Adventist Review, we feature this drift toward Rome. We avocate making common cause with Rome in its objective of breaching the wall of separation of church and state. Now we will be able to see where Folkenberg stands on this drift toward Rome within the Editorial staff of what is really the Church's voice whether admitted or not. Of course we recognize that since 1975, it has no longer been "good Seventh-day Adventism to express...an aversion to Roman Catholicism as such." (See Excerpts Legal Documents, p. 46) (Written, March 26, 1991)
"WHEN WILL THE TEMPLE BE REBUILT IN JERUSALEM?" -- In the mails this past week, a brother on the West Coast shared with me the March, 1991, issue of News From Isreal. It asked the question - " When Will the Temple Be Built in Jerusalem? " It is no longer the question of will the temple be rebuilt, but when. This monthly journal is published by Midnight Call, Inc., of West Columbia, SC. The advertisements of Bible Prophecy Conferences in the journal indicate that it is a ministry orientated to the study of Bible prophecy, but in the setting of the secret rapture theory.
The logic and reasoning used to answer the question asked - "When Will the Temple Be Built In Jerusalem?" - is both interesting and alarming. The answer to the question begins: First, we must ask, what is the temple? It is Jerusalem's small sanctuary. We must see this clearly: Canaan without Jerusalem is incomplete: Jerusalem without the Temple is unthinkable. Just as a person without an inner sanctuary is not a fulfilled person, so Jerusalem without the Temple is not the fulfilled Jerusalem.
Second, the Temple is an inseparable part of the reign of Jesus Christ in Jerusalem. The Prophetic Word of the Lord says, " Behold the man whose name is The BRANCH." ... This Branch is Jesus of Nazareth. It is He of whom the Lord speaks here through His prophet Zechariah, [that shall] "sit and reign upon his throne" (Zechariah 6:13).
This is the King in the royal city of Jerusalem. But in the same breath he says, " and he shall be a priest upon his throne"...This is the High Priest in the Temple. Thus, we see that the reign of Jesus Christ as King in Jerusalem, which He will soon begin, and his priesthood are
P 4 -- inseparable. For this reason Jerusalem and the temple are also inseparable. The city and the Temple will be one. ...
Are there any signs yet that the Temple will be built? Yes! We cannot give any specific date, but the necessity for the building of the Temple is becoming urgent, even for political reason. The bilding of the Temple will be a political act of great significance, because only in this way will the annexation of Jerusalem become a political reality. (pp. 6, 7)
While the writer connects this whole prophetic schema witih the "secret rapture," nevertheless, he is echoing a common concept hold by a number within the Adventist community, that Luke 21:24 cannot be fulfilled so long as the Temple mount is under Moslem control. The text reads - "And Jerusalem shall be trodden dcwn of the Gentlies (nations), until the times of the Gentiles (nations) be fulfilled." To hold to the position that not until the temple is rebuilt will this prophecy be fulfilled is to fail to understand the context in which Jesus gave this prophecy that night on the Mount of Olivet.
Jesus had just left the Temple a few hours before. He stated plainly as He was leaving - "Your house is left unto you desolate." (Matt 23:38) No longer did He claim the Temple as either His nor His Father's. Thus as He unfolded for His disciples in answer to their multiple question, He did not connect the "times of the nations" with the temple, nor with the nation of Israel, but only with the fate of the city itself. He did not consider Jerusalem and the Temple "inseparable." This fact must be kept clearly in mind in the study of Luke 21:24.
That there can be a Temple rebuilt on Mount Moriah is within the realm of possibility, and from the evidence presented in this prophecy journal - News From Israel - it is being not only contemplated but planned for by religious loaders in Israel. But it will not be Luke 21:24 that will be fulfilled by that event, but rather a preparation for the fulfillment of Daniel 11:45. Indeed that person behind the "he" of Daniel 11:45 may come in fulfillment of as many prophecies as possible to show that he is the Christ, the Messiah of Israel, even coming " suddenly to his temple." It is this aspect, the suddenness, that makes the contemplated events so alarming. For when Daniel 11:45 is fulfilled, Michael stands up. (Daniel 12:1) it is not then the close of probation for the "nations" as corporate bodies, as indicated by the fulfillment of Luke 21:24, but the close of probation of the whole human race. The shortness of the time involved is emphasized in RevelatIon 17. For but only "one hour" do the "ten horns" receive power to reign with the "beast." When the sudden, rapid movements envelope the world, there will be little time to put ono's house in order. That is why it is absolutely perilous to ignore the fulfillment of Luke 21:24, applying to it different criteria for fulfillment that Jesus Himself gave. True it we can put it off into some futuro time, or the fulfillment of any prophecy, we can escape the reality of the now time, and what the now time demands of us. But we do so at our eternal peril.
There has been inuch speculation in regard to Bible prophecy as a result of the present crisis in the Persian Gulf. (See "Iraqi Fallout," WWN, XXIII-12, Dec 1990 ) This has led to a counter reaction. On my desk is a recent letter which suggests: Ellen White has not written that we are to look to the conditions of the Middle East in trying to i nterpret Daniel, chapter eleven, otherwise we would miss the spiritual application that is more meaningful to us. (March 19, 1991)
While cornments on Daniel 11 are almost non existent in the Writings, Ellen white does state - "The prophecy of the eleventh chapter of Daniel has nearly reached its complete fulfillment. " (9T:14) In fact, she specifically points out, that events in the history of Jerusalem are connected with the final scenes; but rather than directing our attention to Daniel 11, she calls our attention to Luke. Here are her words: In the twenty-first chapter of Luke, Christ foretold what was to come upon Jerusalem, and with it He connected the scenes which were to take place in the history of this world just prior to the coming of the Son of man in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. (CtoW&E, pp. 23-24)
One must face the fact that in this reference, Ellen White singled out Luke alone of the three synoptic gospels which record the eschatological discourse of Jesus. The event in the history of Jerusalem, which is noted by Luke only, concerns the end of probationary time for the "nations" as corporate bodies, in other words, Luke 21:24. Any prophetic guidepost missed or denied leads one to decisions out of harmony with Heaven's agenda for one's life, which usually has eternal consequences.
When brought face to face with fulfilled
P 5 -- prophecy not to our liking, we attempt to either discredit it, or give an irimpretation to the types and symbols used which mute the force of the prophecy. This means that we seek, to spiritualize away in this case, the meaning of "Jerusalem" and "Israel. " There is no question that of AD 34, Isreal as a corporate Church/Nation was no longer considered as the " elect" of God, a chosen nation; and neither was the city of Jerusalem, considered longer as the holy city. There came into existence a new " elect," a new "commonwealth of Israel" (I Peter 1:2, Eph. 2:12-13), and the holy city of God is the "heavenly Jerusalem." (Heb, 12:22)
All of this data does not set aside the fact that Jesus on the Mount of Olives in His outline of the future, made events in the history of the earthly city of Jerusalem, signs for His followers to the final times of human history. In AD 66, Jerusalem had ceased to be the holy city of God , yet when the Roman armies surrounded the city, it was a sign to those who believed His word, to flee the city because its destruction was nigh at hand. The restoration of Jewish control to that same city - which has occurred - also constitutes a sign to those who are willing to see and cease from their Laodicean blindness. It is a sign that the corporate bodies of earth have been weighed in the balances of the sanctuary, and have been found to be wanting. The Judgment passes to the cases of the individuals. If we wait to set our houses in order until the temple is rebuilt, and Lucifer, as Christ, suddenly comes to his temple, we may have waited too long. Now is still the time accepted; now is still the day of salvation. (March 26, 1991)
The third printing of an in-depth study of Luke 21.24 has been completed. It is enlarged and with added documentation. The title has been changed to The Hour and End. This may be requested through Adventist Laymen's Foundation.
"CONFUSION OF FACES" -- In the first article - "A Deplorable Editoral" we noted the pictoral recommendation of the Revised English Bible. From the "jacket," we noted that it was proclaimed as a "radical revision" of the New Fnglish Bible. Representatives of a wide group of churches took part in the revision, including the hierarchies of the Roman Catholic church in the British Isles. In the preface of the Bible, the story of the revision is enlarged. The original initiative for the New English Bible came from the Church of Scotland. The Joint Committee formed to carry forward the project was made up of Protestant bodies. After its publication, the composition of the Joint Committee was changed to include the Roman Catholic church. From this new Joint Committee came the Revised English Bible which includes the Apocrypha.
It is in the Apocrypha that the doctrine of Purgatory is taught. First, one must understand the exact teaching of the Roman Catholic church in regard to this doctrine. It reads as defined by the council of Trent - "That there is a purgatory and that souls detained there are benefitted by the prayers of the faithful and especially by the acceptable sacrifice of the altar [Mass]." Now observe the teaching as found in the Apocrypha. In a battle with the army of Gorias, the Jews under Judas Maccabaeus lost a number of their men. After resting on the Sabbath, Sunday morning they gathered the dead bodies to be sent to their kinsfolk for burial "in their family graves." In the process, they found hidden idols on the bodies of the dead which in their judgment indicated why they had been killed. For this they turned "to prayer" begging " that every trace of this offence might be blotted out." Then a contribution was levied on each man, and sent to Jerusalem "to provide a sin-offering - fit and proper act in which he took due account of the resurrection." "The text continues: Had he not been expecting the fallen to rise again, it would have been superfluous and sanseless to pray for the dead; but since he had in view the splendid reward reserved for those who die a godly death, his purpose was holy and devout. That was why he offered the attoning sacrifice, to free the dead from their sin. (2nd Maccabees 12:44-45 REB)
6 -- This
with the Apocrypha is but the culmination of a long history of English
revisions to mute the force of the KJV as the bulwark of Protestantism.
It was through the Oxford Movement within the Church of England that the
Romeward Movement began, and which
Here are some examples:
I Peter 4:6 - KJV - "For this cause was the gospel preached also to them that are dead..."
REB - "That was why the gospel was preached even to the dead..."
II Peter 2:9 - KJV - " The Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptations, and to reserve the unjust unto the day of judgment to be punished."
REB - "The Lord knows how ro rescue the godly from their trials, and to keep the wicked under punishment until the day of judgment."
Further, in the outline given by Paul for the celebration of the COMMUNION Service is seen the change of wording which seeks to establish the basis for the Mass. Note:
I Cor. 11:24 - KJV - "And when He had given thanks, He brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you; this do in remembrance of Me. "
REB - "And after giving thanks to God broke it and said: ' This is my body, which is for you; do this in memory of me.' "
Behind this whole doctrinal structure of Rome as it is being introctuced into Protestantism is the teaching of salvation by works. This change is noticeable in the translation of Matt. 18:2-3:
KJV - "Verily I say to you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven,"
REB - 'T ruly I tell you: unless you turn around and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. "
Here the passive form of the verb in the Greek text for "converted," "turn around," is given the force of the active. Instead of being acted upon - passive - and turned around by the power of God, one turns himself around - converts himself, such is the teaching of Rome. Then is recommended the Bible which so teaches. To us belongeth "confusion of faces, as it is this day." (Dan. 9:7)
LET'S TALK IT OVER-- Many letters come in the mail. Some make requests for publications; some seek additional information on a given topic covered in a particular issue of WNN, while a few become so hold as to challenge documentation from recognized and credible sources. Yet from time to time letters come from those who have perceived truth and rejoice in the truth perceived. One such letter, I wish to discuss in this editorial because the depth of this person's perception could prove a blessing if many more so perceived. The letter read in part (and the emphasis is theirs): It has gotten to the point to where you can hardly tell the true from the false and I thank you for your timely articles. Sometimes we can't redily discern the small errors. I so many times assumed that anyone quoting Sister Ellen White was really telling it straight.
Many more concerned Adventists need to recognize that they are making the same " assumption" to their spiritual detriment. If everyone who has been awakened to the fact that things within the Seventh-day Adventist Church are not what they should be nor what they once were, would also recognize that the mere quoting from the Writings by the "many voices" on the periphery of Adventism is being used to cover ulterior objectives, 95% of those "voices" would cease to sound for lack of support.
At the 1901 General Conference session on April 1 - and she wasn't fooling - Ellen G. White told a grouo of workers assembled in the Battle Creek library: Don't you quote Sister White. I don't want you ever to quote Sister White until you get your vantage ground where you know where you are. Quote the Bible. Talk the Bible. It is full of meat, full of fatness. (Spalding-Magan Collection, p. 174)
Many of these "voices" sounding are novices when it comes to the Bible. Some at times will begin their "message" from a section of the Scripture, and then continue their presentation with nothing but quotes from the Writings. If you should question them closely on what the Word of God meant that they had quoted as an introduction, you would either draw a blank, or an attempted evasion of the question asked.
Ellen G. White clearly understood the purpose of the "gift" given to her. It was a "lesser
p 7 --
leading to a "greater light." (CM, p. 125) She even gave
clear instruction as to how her
Today, the unrestrained use of the Writings to given credibility to the "many voices" (R&H, Dec. 13, 1892) sounding on the periphery of Adventism has resulted in nothing but wholesale confusion. Instead of using the Writings as a " lesser light" leading to the "greater light," too many of the "voices" never arrive at the "greater light" themselves, nor do they bring their listeners to that light - the Bible. The Adventism being taught by these "voices" is not a Bible-based historic Adventism, but rather a Writing-based - who knows what? - to which " time and place" is never considered as advised by Ellen G. White herself. (SM, op.cit., p. 57) It might also be emphasized that merely to put down the date when a particuiar testimony was written is not always observing the principle of "time and place." Internal evidence in the case of some of the Writings determines the "time" factor.
We are encouraged to know that some are awakening to the fact that one cannot assume that the use of the Writings insures, the credibility of the user. May many more also have their eyes anointed so that they, too, shall see. --- (1991 Jun) --- End ---