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1977 Jan-MarX 1(77) - X 3(77)
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1988 Apr-Jun 3 & 4 of 4.
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Holy Flesh Movement 1899-1901, The - William H. Grotheer
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Paul VI Given Gold Medallion by Adventist Church Leader
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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
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1985 Jan -- XVIII - 1(85) -- APOSTASY IN PROPHETIC INTERPRETATION -- Hauser and Wheeling Follow Ford -- THE ODYSSEY OF APOSTASY WITHIN THE ADVENTIST COMMUNITY HAS NOT ONLY INCLUDED DEVIATIONS IN HISTORICAL THEOLOGICAL CONCEPTS, BUT ALSO FUNDAMENTAL PRINCIPLES IN THE INTERPRETATION OF PROPHECY ARE BEING ALTERED. Theological compromise surfaced in the book - Questions on Doctrine - as a result of the Seventh-day Adventist-Evangelical Conferences in 1955-1956. In the documents now available, it is established that the Church's conferees compromised the faith given in trust to the Adventist Church in the areas of the atonement and the incarnation. It was stated to Barnhouse and Martin by these men "that they do not believe, as some of their earlier teachers taught, that Jesus' atoning work was not completed on Calvary but instead that He is carrying on a second ministering work since 1844." The idea "was totally repudiated," according to Barnhouse and Martin. These Evangelicals perceived that the Adventists now "believe that since His ascension Christ has been ministering the benefits of the atonement which He completed on Calvary." (Eternity, September, 1956) This assessment of what the Adventist leaders said, has never been denied. As for the teaching on the incarnation, the book - Questions on Doctrine - specifically stated - "Although born in the flesh, [Jesus] was nevertheless God, and was exempt from the inherited passions and pollutions that corrupt the natural descendants of Adam." (p. 383, emphasis supplied)
What is not generally known is that the book also contained a section - "Questions on Prophecy." In this section, the Adventist conferees were solid on the basic principles of prophetic interpretation which underlie Reformation and Adventist understanding of the books of Daniel and Revelation. They showed clearly that Antiochus Epiphanes could not be "the little horn" of Daniel 8. They forcibly set forth the connection between Chapter 8 & 9 of Daniel. The year for a day concept as applied to the time prophecies was ably defended. One could find little, if any, to question in the defense, as found in the book, of our historic understanding of the principles of prophetic interpretation, or the prophecies discussed in the section.
However, when "the chickens" of the theological apostasy "came home to roost" in Ford's attack on the sanctuary teaching, he also brought into the open a deviate concept by which the prophecies of God's word were to be interpreted. When given a leave to prepare a defense, of his allegations, he produced a large manuscript, which was later published under the title - Daniel 8:14; The Day of Atonement, and the Investigative Judgment.
p 2 -- In this manuscript, Ford defined what he meant by his use of the "apotelesmatic principle." He wrote - "The apotelesmatic principle is a convenient term for referring to the concept that a particular prophecy in outline or as regards a dominant feature may have more than one application in time." (p. 302) Note, and keep in mind the phrase - "more than one application in time." What Ford is saying is simply that a given prophecy, for example, "the little horn" of Daniel 8 could have been fulfilled in Antiochus Epiphanes in 167 B.C., and again this same prophecy could find another application in New Testament times in the Papacy, and again it could apply to a future antichrist to appear near the end of time. He even suggests that "Seventh-day Adventists are no strangers to the apotelesmatic principle though the term is not common in their literature and only rarely has it been used in connection with the prophecies of Daniel." (p. 303) Ford is suggesting that our use of the term - "dual application" - is synonymous with what he calls "the apotelesmatic principle."
We freely admit that some prophecies do have a "dual application" but they are general in nature. For example, Jesus told His disciples on the Mount of Olives that "nation shall arise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and great earthquakes shall be in divers places, and famines, and pestilences; and fearful sights and great signs shall there be from heaven." (Luke 21:10-11) This prophecy of Jesus could have multiple applications; but it is a general prophecy. The same night Jesus also informed the disciples that Jerusalem would be "compassed with armies." By this they would "then know that the desolation thereof was nigh." (21:20) This is a specific prophecy, and finds only one fulfillment in all history. If it were to have a multiple application, how then would the ones for whom the prophecy was given, know when to do what Jesus instructed them to do when the event occurred?
Prior to the time of his leave from Pacific Union College, Ford had written a commentary on the book of Daniel which was published by the now closed Southern Publishing Association. This book - Daniel, with a foreword by F. F. Bruce of the University of Manchester, England - contains a chapter on "Contemporary Systems of Interpretation." Ford defines four systems. One, the Preteristic, views all the prophecies as having been fulfilled prior to, or soon after the beginnings of the Christian era. It was developed by the Jesuit Alcazar as part of the Catholic Counter Reformation. The second, Futuristic, developed also by a Jesuit, Ribera, from the writings of the Church Fathers, sought to project most, if not all prophecy as being fulfilled at some distant date beyond "the noon day of the Papacy." This, too, was a part of the Counter Reformation of the Roman Catholic Church. This view - the Futuristic has become basic in apostate Protestantism. The other major system is known as Historicism which teaches that history is but the response to the voice of prophecy. This system was used during the great Protestant Reformation, and is the basis for the understanding of prophecy in the Advent Movement.
Ford's comments on three of these major systems of interpretation are most revealing. He wrote: "It must be said that each of the systems is right in what it affirms and wrong in what it denies." (p. 68, emphasis his) After explaining the reason for his emphasis, he concludes - "If the apotelesmatic principle were to be widely understood, some differences between the systems would be automatically resolved." (p. 69) This is simply suggesting that by the adoption of his so-called "principle" there could be worked out a compromise between Jesuitical interpretations of prophecy and the historical understanding applied to the prophecies during the Protestant Reformation. The bottom line is an attempt to adulterate the historic Advent faith which was built upon the prophecies of God's word by which the events of history were seen as the unfolding of the scroll of prophecy.
Robert W. Hauser - Give Him the Glory -- Few perhaps who have read this book by Dr. Hauser, or who have listened to him speak, have taken time to seriously consider what he has written in the "Introduction." Hauser wrote: The historical
p 3 -- approach has served us well in the past, but like the horse and buggy, no longer fits our needs. This is not to discard the historical approach as untrue. It is, like the horse and buggy, no longer relevant." (p. 2) This is simply double-talk. If the historical approach is still true, then it is still applicable! Truth is truth and fits any age and all peoples. But what does Hauser feel is relevant to the computer age? In a footnote - in fine print, and one needs to read the label carefully before buying a product Hauser explains: "Kenneth Strand points out that there are three main approaches to the interpretation of Revelation: preterist, futurist and continuous-historical. (Kenneth A. Strand, Interpreting the Book of Revelation, Hermeneutical Guidelines with brief introduction to literary analysis, Ann Arbor Publishers, 1979) The analysis in this book may be categorized as belonging to a variant of the continuous historical interpretation. More specifically it is also a variant of a subdivision Strand refers to as straight-line, as opposed to recapitulationist. However, in significant ways it differs from the straight-line approach by identifying two areas with dual historical and future applications within the main outline. Therefore the approach used herein does not fit any of the previous models but is a combination." (p. 3, one word emphasis his)
This is plain Fordian, and a candid admission that he is using "the apotelesmatic" concept as the basis for his interpretation of the prophecies of Revelation. A "combination" of the "historical and future applications" is exactly what Dr. Desmond Ford suggests is the real merit of the "apotelesmatic principle."
The Biblical Research Institute of the General Conference and the Ellen G. White Estate joined in a Critique of Give Glory to Him. While the "Critique" contains 18 pages, in reality one need not read beyond the first page. It is all said there in two sentences: "From their inception Seventh-day Adventists have followed the historical method of prophetic interpretation ...
"A change of methodology inevitably leads to a change in one's conclusions."
If a man builds a house on an octagonal foundation, can I question the way he has to construct his rooms, possibly their odd shapes, just because I have built my house on a rectangular base? No! Thus, in the area of prophetic interpretation, one must consider what is the right base. Once that is determined, he need not spend his time measuring, or analyzing the other man's interpretations built on what he has determined to be a false base. This resolves into some very simple questions. Were the Reformers right in their principles of prophetic interpretation? These were the principles used by our spiritual forefathers in determining how the books of Daniel and Revelation were to be understood. Or is Ford correct in advocating a compromise - a combination - between the Jesuitical concepts and the Protestant methodology by the "application" of the "apotelesmatic principle"? Hauser concludes that Ford is to be followed. They may arrange their "rooms" differently, but the base is the same.
Charles Wheeling -- In August, 1984, Charles Wheeling gave a weekend series of studies in the Gentry Seventh-day Adventist Church here in Arkansas. From a transcript of the taped recording, we quote his position. In the study "Common Ground" [Who with?] (Tape #1, side 2.) - Wheeling stated: "Let us go back into the book of Daniel. I want you to go to chapter seven of Daniel with me. Now I am going to say some things here and I hope you won't misunderstand me."
In discussing the four kingdoms represented there, he asked: "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."
Then further in the presentation in a
p 4 -- discussion of Daniel 7:9, Wheeling stated: "I am going to suggest that the historical application, as good as it is and has been, does not satisfy the passage entirely."
This is just plain double-talk! It is nothing more than a barefaced recommendation of Ford's "apotelesmatic principle," which as quoted above states that "a particular prophecy in outline, or as regards a dominant feature may have more than one application in time."
Not only does Wheeling seek to set before the professed people of God right in their own sanctuaries, the apostate suggestion of Ford, but he also derides what he has assumed to be the source of our Adventist heritage in the understanding of the prophecy of Daniel 7. He stated in the same setting: "Now historically, Uriah Smith, and I want to underscore that, because it was Uriah Smith who offers the interpretation that is so familiar to all of us. Historically Uriah Smith said, ' These four beast, doubtless, represent four great world empires. Doubtless,' he said, ' they correspond to the four kingdoms of the past.'"
Then Wheeling concluded: "It is a mere assumption on Uriah Smith's part, and your part and mine, that those four beast represent Babylon, Medo-Persia, Greece, and Rome. There are some difficulties here, and I want you to be aware of them."
No question - "There are some difficulties here" - but it is not with what Uriah Smith wrote, nor with what Seventh-day Adventists have believed in regard to Daniel 7. The difficulty is with Charles Wheeling, and his deliberate attempt to denigrate Uriah Smith, and extol the "apotelesmatic principle" of Desmond Ford.
There are 'two points that need to be noted in regards to Wheeling's comments on Uriah Smith: (1) In reading what Uriah Smith said about Daniel 7, I cannot find anything close to the term, "doubtless," which is a term of speech suggesting mere assumption without an authoritative basis. Smith in the 1897 edition of Thoughts on Daniel wrote: Now, from the time of Daniel to the end of this world's history, there were to be but four universal kingdoms, as we learn from Nebuchadnezzar's dream of the great image in Daniel 2. Daniel was still living under the same kingdom which he had declared, in his interpretation of the king's dream, about sixty-five years before, to be the head of gold. The first beast of this vision must therefore denote the same as the head of gold of the great image, namely, the kingdom of Babylon, and the other beasts the succeeding kingdoms shown by that image." (p. 127)
Not until the revised 1944 edition - Uriah Smith died in 1903 - of The Prophecies of Daniel and Revelation do we find a suggestion that would warrant Wheeling's insinuation in the use of the word "doubtless." The revised text reads: "The first beast of this vision [Daniel 7] must therefore denote the same kingdom as the head of gold of the great image, namely, Babylon. The other beasts no doubt represent the succeeding kingdoms portrayed by that image." (p. 106)
(2) "Wheeling would have the professed followers of the Advent faith believe that Uriah Smith's historical application was unique. In this Wheeling either did not do his home work, or if he did, he purposefully sought to deceive his listeners. James White taught the same thing in regard to the meaning of the beast-symbols of Daniel 7. In an editorial, in the Review & Herald, Nov. 29, 1877, which discussed the "Eastern Question," he wrote: Let us take a brief view of the line of prophecy four times spanned in the book of Daniel. It will be admitted that the same ground is passed over in chapters two, seven, eight, and eleven, with this exception that Babylon is left out of chapters eight and eleven. We first pass down the great image of chapter two where Babylon, Persia, Greece, and Rome are represented by the gold, the silver, the brass, the iron. All agree that these feet are not Turkish but Roman. As we pass down, the lion, the bear, the leopard, and the beast with the ten horns, representing the same as the great image, again all will agree that it is not Turkey that is cast into the burning flame, but the Roman beast." (p. 172)
p 5 -- Further, as one checks back into the writings of the men of the Pre- and Post-Reformation Period, as well as during the time of the Reformation itself, he will find that the following men taught and believed the four beasts to be just as Uriah Smith identified the first three - the lion = Babylon; the bear = Medo-Persia; and the leopard = Greecia. This list includes such venerable scholars as John Wycliff, Martin Luther, Philip Melancthon, Hugh Latimer, John Knox, Joseph Mede, Sir Isaac Newton, and Thomas Newton. (See Charts, The Prophetic Faith of Our Fathers, pp. 156-157, 528-528, 786-787) Thus the interpretation given by Uriah Smith to the beasts of Daniel 7 couldn't have been "a mere assumption" on his part. Why such deceptive tactics?
In seeking to apply Ford's "apotelesmatic concept" to Daniel 7, and show that there is a second "application," Wheeling asked his listeners - "Would you go to verse 17 in that chapter  with me. Daniel wanted to know the truth and the angel said to him ' These four beasts are four kings which' - what does it say? - ' shall arise...' Tell me, is that past tense, present tense, or future tense? That is future tense!"
Now I want to ask Brother Wheeling something. "Brother Wheeling take your Bible, and please turn to Daniel 7:10, and read with me - 'A fiery stream issued and came forth from before Him: thousand thousand thousands ministered unto Him, and ten thousand times ten thousand stood before Him.' Tell me, is that word, "stood," past tense, present tense, or future tense? As translated into the English, it is past tense, but Brother Wheeling, in the Aramaic, the same identical word is used for 'stood' as is translated, 'shall arise' in Daniel 7:17." In other words, Daniel 7:17 could be translated - "These great beasts, which are four, are four kings which stood out of the earth." Some study in depth before one goes forth as a teacher would be most helpful, so that God's professed children would not be deceived. Borrowing the words from the book of Hebrews, when for the time ye ought to be a teacher, ye have need that someone teach' you. (See Heb. 5:12)
So that all the readers might know the principles of grammar that are involved here, let me cite what is stated in Gesenius' Hebrew Grammar: "In moods and tenses it [the Hebrew verb] is very poor, having only two tenses (Perfect and Imperfect), ... (p. 81, 1858 edition) A footnote explains that "the corresponding terms in the Hebrew lexicon of Gesenius (translated by Dr. Robinson, 5th ed., 1854) are Proeter for Perfect, and Future for Imperfect." - The difference between the "Perfect" and the "Imperfect" of the Hebrew verb is explained in the Grammar. It reads: "The name Imperfect is used in direct contrast with Perfect; in a wider sense, therefore, than in the Latin and Greek grammar. 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 into 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." (p.88)
The Aramaic word, koom, as used in both Daniel 7:10 & 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 past time into the future.
The position taken by the pioneers of the Advent Movement was not unique, nor "a mere assumption" in regard to Daniel 7; but rather the true position based on sound principles of prophetic interpretation. What is unique is the application of the "apotelesmatic" concept of Dr. Ford by Charles Wheeling to Daniel. 7, and the fanciful expositions which result.
p 6 -- THE APOTELESMATIC PRINCIPLE by Ralph Larson (All-Emphasis His) -- Definition: The concept that a Bible prophecy may have more than one application or fulfillment.
Bible scholars work with two tools, exegesis and hermeneutics. The term exegesis is applied to that process whereby a scholar endeavors to establish a precise meaning to a certain passage in scripture. The term hermeneutics is applied to the process of looking beyond the single passage to its context, the chapter, the book, and the entire Bible, comparing scripture with scripture.
Bible scholars unless they are inspired, have nothing more to work with than these two tools. We may have a degree of confidence in conclusions that are reached by careful use of exegesis and hermeneutics. But when the scholar steps beyond the boundaries of these two disciplines, it is immediately apparent that he is speculating or guessing, and his guesses might be right or they may be hopelessly mistaken. In any case, let it be clearly established that by the very nature of the case, conclusions that cannot be verified through exegesis and hermeneutics must be classified as guesses.
With inspired writers there is a decided difference. An inspired writer may be instructed by the Holy Spirit to apply a certain passage of scripture in a manner that could never be verified by exegesis or hermeneutics. For example, in Matthew 2:15 the inspired writer applies to the return of the child Jesus from Egypt the words of Hosea 11:1: "Out of Egypt have I called my Son." But in its context, this verse refers to the exodus of Israel from Egypt in the days of Moses. The application of this passage to the experience of the child Jesus could never be established by either exegesis or hermeneutics nor by any combined exercise of those two disciplines.
Why then do we accept it with confidence? Because the application is made by an inspired writer. The inspired writer is not guessing, but is being guided by the Holy Spirit.
Is the apotelesmatic principle valid? Yes, in the hands of an inspired writer. In the hands of an uninspired writer, the conclusions reached through the application of the apotelesmatic principle must be placed in the same category as palm reading, horoscopes, the inspection of tea leaves, or predictions based upon the examination of the entrails of chickens. (Reproduced from a copy published by the Final Century Research Foundation, Central Point, OR. 97502)
Editor's Note: Dr. Larson is commenting on the Apotelesmatic concept as if synonymous to the concept of Dual Fulfillment. However , Dr. Ford takes the principle in a much broader aspect, setting it forth as a compromise to lessen the distance between the Jesuitical systems of prophetic interpretation and the continual historical.
SUMMARY REPORT - 2 -- This is the second report from the Complaint filed by Americans United in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania at Philadelphia.
FACTUAL ALLEGATIONS -- "As early as 1779 John Adams wrote the Continental Congress that it was his desire that it would 'never send a minister to His Holiness' or receive a Catholic nuncio to this country. On December 15, 1784, the Papal Nuncio, at Paris, France, contacted the American Commissioners informing the American Commissioners that his government, the Papal States, had agreed to open the ports of Civita Vecchia on the Tyrrhenian Sea and Ancono on the Adriatic to American vessels. The Papal Nuncio expressed interest at that time that commercial relations be established between the Papal States and the new American nation.
"On June 26,
1797, Giovanni Batista Sartori of Rome was commissioned as the first consul
to represent the United States in the papal dominions. The Papal States,
whose center was Rome and whose monarch was the Pope, were comprised of
p 7 -- the Marches, Umbria, and Rome, bounded on the north by the Lombardo-Venetian kingdom, on the east by the kingdom of Naples, on the southwest by the Mediterranean Sea, and on the West by Tuscany and the Dutchy of Modena. The territory covered an area of approximately 16,000 square miles and had a population of more than three million. The American consuls were paid by fees charged by the consul. The American representatives to the Papal States were explicitly restricted to 'civil relations' and to the extension of commerce between the two countries. No representatives of the Papal States were correspondingly sent to the United States.
"On December 7, 1847, President Polk, in a message to Congress, recommended the opening of formal diplomatic relations with the Papal States. This recommendation was included in a deficiency bill containing the financial provisions for a new chargé d'affaires. The proposal was vehemently debated in both houses of Congress, primarily on the grounds that there was no political or commercial need for such representation, and the President was pandering to the Catholic vote. However, the appropriation passed the House of Representatives 137 to 15 and the Senate 36 to 7. The first chargé d'affaires to the Papal States was appointed in 1848 with Congress having exercised it's powers of advice and consent as well as its funding powers under Article I, section 8 of the Constitution. The United States diplomat was instructed by Secretary of State James Buchanan to 'carefully avoid even the appearance of interfering in ecclesiastical questions.' In 1854 Lewis Cass Jr., the second charge was raised to the rank of minister. In 1867 a question of religious liberty arose between the United States and the Papal States. The controversy stemmed from the laws of Rome which prohibited any other form of public worship than such as conformed to the teachings of the Roman Catholic Church. Certain Protestant churches were required to maintain their churches outside of Rome." -- To Be Continued
"Let the year be given to God in its every moment! The year is made up of minutes: let these be watched as having been dedicated to God! It is in the sanctification of the small that hallowing of the large is secure." -- G. Campbell Morgan --- (1985 Jan) --- End --- TOP
1985 Feb -- XVIII - 2(85) -- SUPPOSE -- Chapter from Re-Written and Updated Manuscript -- Suppose you had been living in Jerusalem in 66 A.D. You were a Christian. As a tradesman you were providing a modest but an adequate living for your family. You were aware of the prophecy Jesus had given concerning the coming destruction of Jerusalem, having heard it from the lips of the Apostles. Furthermore, it was also a matter of record in the Gospels already written, and you had heard it read frequently in the Christian assembly. But no Roman or alien armies had as yet surrounded the city. There were rumors, but Jesus had not said to rely upon rumors.
Then one morning you awakened to the fact that the Roman armies had surrounded the city, and all the gates were closed. How were you to leave the city? It appeared there was no way out. What did Jesus mean? Had you waited too long? No, suddenly the armies of Rome withdrew for no apparent cause. The Jewish forces pursued, and the gates were now open. What would you have then done? What should you have done?
Believing the words of Jesus, you hurriedly left the city with what you and your family could take with you. It was a complete uprooting of your life, and meant leaving behind many a cherished possession. You did not stop till you were safely across the Jordan, and located in a small village in the region beyond. There you sought to re-establish a form of existence. It was most difficult; life was hard. As time went by, news reached you that the armies of Rome had not returned. Things were not exactly normal, but from the reports, those in the city were faring far better than you were across the Jordan. What would have been tempted to do? What should you have done? You chose to stay where you were, and continued to struggle to make ends meet for your family needs.
A.D. 70 came. The Roman armies returned. You received news of the terrible slaughter and devastation which resulted when the city was taken. You were glad, though life was far from easy, that you had believed the words of Jesus. Your very life - salvation - depended upon your faith in what Jesus had said.
A. D. 1832 -- Suppose you had been living in a small New England town in the year 1832. One day during the week as you were reading the notices on the bulletin board in the village square, you read the announcement that one William Miller was going to lecture the coming Sunday night in the Town Hall on the soon return of Jesus. The next Sunday morning found you sitting in your usual place at church as your pastor introduced his sermon with the announcement you had read. He then proceeded to
p 2 -- decry the fanaticism of thinking that Jesus was going to return to earth in just a few years. He ridiculed the prophecies as mere dreams with only an allegorical meaning. You had planned to go that night to hear Mr. Miller. But the pastor had some things to say about him, too. So you decided not to go, and you didn't.
The next year - one morning, well before daybreak - you were suddenly awakened with the sound of cries and the terrified voices of your neighbors. Looking out to see what was causing this unusual disturbance, you saw what they saw - the stars of heaven were falling. You began to tremble, because you knew what Jesus had said, and what was written in the book of Revelation, which was being so vividly fulfilled before your eyes. What were you to do? You recalled distinctly your decision of the previous year - now with deep regret.
Weeks pass, and again, one day as you read the bulletin board in the village square, you discover that William Miller will speak in a nearby church the next Sunday night. Regardless of what your pastor will say on Sunday morning, you are determined to go and hear Miller. So you do, and are completely convinced that the presentation of prophecy is accurate. The end of all things is at hand, and so you start attending the study group organized to prepare folk for the coming of Jesus, and to provide support that others may also hear.
October 23, 1844 -- Since you believed expectantly that Jesus was going to return on October 22, 1844, you gathered with those of like precious faith, uniting with them in prayer and watching all that day. Into the hours of the night you waited, but still Jesus did not come. The little sleep you got the rest of the night was fitful, and with the dawning on October 23, you could not rest. Your mind was agitated; your heart was torn with disappointment. What should you do? What could you do? Where in the Word of God could you turn for an answer?
The Midnight Cry which had established the date, October 22 - "the tenth day of the seventh month" - had also opened minds to the further and deeper study of the type and antitype relationship between the earthly and heavenly sanctuary. One who lived through this experience has written: The subject of the sanctuary was the key which unlocked the mystery of the disappointment, showing that God had led His people in the great Advent movement. It opened to view a complete system of truth, connected and harmonious, and revealed present duty as it brought to light the position and work of God's people. (SP. IV, p. 268)
[Note that the study of the sanctuary brought "to view a complete system of truth" and "revealed present duty."]
What was that duty? Again from the pen of one who live through those trying days following the disappointment, we read: The passing of time in 1844 was followed by a period of great trial to those who still held the Advent faith. Their only relief, so far as ascertaining their true position was concerned, was the light which directed their minds to the sanctuary above. As has been stated, Adventists were for a short time united in the belief that the door of mercy was shut. This position was soon abandoned. Some renounced their faith in their former reckoning of the prophetic periods, and ascribed to human or Satanic agencies the powerful influence of the Holy Spirit which had attended the Advent movement. Another class firmly held that the Lord had led them in their past experience; and as they waited and watched and prayed to know the will of God, they saw that their great High Priest had entered upon another work of ministration, and following Him by faith, they were led to understand also the closing work of the church, and were prepared to receive and give to the world the warning of the third angel of Revelation 14. (Ibid., pp. 271-272. emphasis mine.)
[Observe - those who followed Jesus by faith were led to understand "the closing work of the church." They also perceived the Third Angel's Message was to be given to the world.]
As Time Continued
of the disappointment, being sincere and believing the Word of God, you
chose to unite your interests and endeavors with those who would be proclaiming
to the world the Messages of Revelation 14. You looked for the time when
the message would swell into a "loud cry" as foretold in Revelation
18. You rejoiced to hear the messages of Elders A. T. Jones and
p 3 -- E. J. Waggoner when they came to South Lancaster to give what they had presented at the Minneapolis General Conference Session in 1888. Then one day a few years later, you opened the Review & Herald, that had just come in the mail. In it you read: "The time of test is just upon us, for the loud cry of the third angel has already begun in the revelation of the righteousness of Christ, the sin-pardoning Redeemer. This is the beginning of the light of the angel whose glory shall fill the whole earth." (Nov. 22, 1892, p. 615)
This caused you to rejoice. The Loud Cry had commenced. Revelation 18 was about to be fulfilled. Soon Jesus would come. You recalled that experience which filled your soul on October 22, 1844. Surely you would not again be disappointed. But then, time dragged on. Nothing happened. The revival that had been so evident at the South Lancaster meetings died out. What had happened? You were getting older, and had hoped, 0 so much, to be alive and see Jesus come. Many of your friends who had shared this same hope had already fallen asleep in Jesus. Must this too, be your experience?
Ten more years pass, and you heard about a letter which Ellen G. White wrote to Percy T. Magan. It had said: We may have to remain here in this world because of insubordination many more years, as did the children of Israel, but for Christ's sake, His people should not add sin to sin by charging God with the consequences of their own wrong course of action. (Letter dated, Dec. 7, 1901)
As the full effect of the letter comes home to your mind, you ask - "How many is 'many more years?'" The same day a friend visits you, and you both discuss things dear to your heart - the coming of Jesus; the advancing years of your life; - your hopes and expectations. This friend tells you about another letter, also written in 1901. You want to see a copy. In a few days, your friend returns and brings you a copy of this letter. You take it, and read it very slowly and carefully. It tells you: 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. (Letter 20, 1901; C to W&E, pp. 23-24)
That evening when you had time to think it through, you asked yourself the question - "Why did Ellen White just ask us to note Luke 21.? Why not Matthew 24 and Mark 13? These are also reports of what Jesus gave in prophecy that night long ago. Why did she specify that what Luke had recorded about events to come upon Jerusalem would be 'connected [with] the scenes which were to take place... just prior to the coming of the Son of man in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory'?" Then you took your Bible and re-read thoughtfully Matthew 24, Mark 13, and Luke 21. You discovered that the only thing that Luke said about Jerusalem that Matthew and Mark did not was in regard to Jerusalem being trodden down of the Gentiles till the times of the Gentiles would be fulfilled.
As the evening hours lengthened into the dark shadows of the night, you continued that year in the early 1900's to ponder what you had read. Jerusalem was still under Gentile control. But you did recall reading in the newspaper of the first Jewish International Congress in 1897 for the purpose of promoting a Jewish Commonwealth in Palestine. Would this Jewish state - if it could be achieved - free Jerusalem from Gentile control? Thinking, wondering, pondering - would it come in your day? - you fell asleep.
p 4 -- BRAVE SOUL -- What Will the "Lions" Do Now? -- "On October 15 , members of the Annual Council heard a report on the church in Hungary, where a breakaway group has existed for some years. The three part presentation was given by Edwin Ludescher, president of the Euro-Africa Division; G. Ralph Thompson, secretary of the General Conference; and Neal C. Wilson, president of the General Conference." (Adventist Review. Nov. 22, 1984) Only a summary was actually printed in the Review. However, Elder Lewis L. Szercz, Pastor of the St. Thomas-Exeter District of the Ontario Conference of Seventh-day Adventists, sent a letter to the Editor of the Review, addressing this summary. Copies of the letter were also sent to the following: Wilson, Thompson, Ludescher, J. W. Wilson, President of the Canadian Union, Members of the Ontario Conference Executive Committee, Hungarian pastors in North America and members of the St. Thomas SDA Church Board. The letter follows:
Dear Sir: A more misleading and prejudicial account of recent events among Seventh-day Adventists in Hungary cannot be imagined than the "Report to the Church" by Elders Edwin Ludescher, G. Ralph Thompson, and Neal C. Wilson regarding "the Hungarian situation" on page 6 in the November 22, 1984, Adventist Review (Vol. 161, No. 47).
To begin with, Elder Ludescher implies that acting contrary to the Church Manual -- as he acknowledges the official union church to have done -- is somehow less obnoxious than being "out of harmony with the Bible and Spirit of Prophecy" -- of which he, without any proof, accuses "the dissident (Egervari) group."
The reason "the Egervari group has set up its, own organization, with ministers and buildings" is because "of about 700 individuals who had been improperly disfellowshipped" (as Elder Wilson admits). Therefore it is lamentable that Elder Ludescher does not state why "the Egervari group backed away at the last moment" from reconciliation, but it is not surprising in view of his demeaning assessment of them: "'If even an angel from heaven, should come and urge them to reintegrate, they would say, "You come from too far away: you don't understand."'"
Elder Thompson correctly reports that "the chief complaint currently raised by the Egervari group is that the union has membership in the Council of Free Churches (CFC)" -- composed as it is of the Baptist Church, the Pentecostal Gospel Community, the Congregation of the Living God, the Seventh-day Adventist Church, the Church of God, the Christian Fraternal Congregation, the Methodist Church, the Ancient Christian Denomination, and the Free Christian Congregation (Organizational Policy of the Council of Free Churches in Hungary, page 2) -- but he misconstrues the true impact of that membership with these assertions:
1. "Membership in the CFC does not involve alliance with the WCC,..."
The fact is that the CFC is a member of the Ecumenical Council in Hungary, which is listed in the chapter "Member Churches of the WCC" on page 271 of Gathered for Life (OFFICIAL REPORT VI Assembly World Council of Churches, Vancouver, Canada 24 July - 10 August, 1983) under the heading "Hungary" as an "associate council." The three Hungarian churches -- Baptist Union of Hungary, Lutheran Church in Hungary, Reformed Church in Hungary -- listed additionally as WCC members also belong to their national ecumenical council. If we ignore this, that is like saying that the National Council of Churches in the U.S.A. listed similarly on page 277 of Gathered for Life in the same chapter alongside 25 American church bodies, is not allied with the WCC!
2. ". . . since membership in the latter is limited to individual churches; it is not open to councils of churches."
The fact is that these
associate councils are - established for purposes of ecumenical
fellowship and activity ... knowing the Basis upon which the World Council
is founded ... to cooperate with the World Council towards the achievement
of one or more of the functions and purposes of this Council... Each associate
council ... shall be provided with copies of all general communications
sent to all members of the World Council of Churches. In
p 5 -- addition to communicating directly with its member churches, the World Council shall inform each associate council regarding important ecumenical developments and consult it regarding proposed World Council programmes in its country. (From the chapter "Constitution and Rules of the WCC, in Gathered for Life, pages 338, 339)
3. "The Seventh-day Adventist Hungarian Union church is not a member of the main ecumenical body of churches in Hungary - The Hungarian Ecumenical Council."
The fact is that when former Hungarian Union president Elder Joseph Szakacs became president of the CFC he was concurrently vicepresident of the Hungarian Ecumenical Council, proving that the Adventist church's CFC membership automatically makes it a member of the main ecumenical body of churches in Hungary.
Elder Thompson implicitly acknowledges these facts since he advised "the union leaders... of withdrawing from the CFC, inasmuch as membership in it is a cause of dissension. " Thus the Egervari group represents and seeks to maintain the historic Adventist stand regarding ecumenical involvement pretended by Elder Thompson: "The Seventh-day Adventist Church has never been a member of the World Council of Churches."
As far, as the WCC is concerned, it "will take steps to develop cooperative working relationships with" the General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists, which sent Dr. Bert Beach as one of thirteen "Delegated Representatives of Christian World Communions" to the 1983 Vancouver Assembly. These "World Confessional Bodies" are the global coordinating committees of their respective worldwide churches, represented at the WCC Assembly and/or Central Committee by the Anglican, Disciples, Friends, Lutheran, Mennonite, Methodist, Reformed, Salvation Army, and Seventh-day Adventist denominations! Thus the official, General Conference-sanctioned ecumenical collaboration is of a more intimate nature than that of the Roman Catholic Church, which had only "Delegated Observers" at Vancouver. See - Gathered for Life, pages 304, 305, 327, and 339.
With his comment about the Egervari group -- "'They want the family name, but they don't want to live in the same house" -- Elder Wilson reveals his real attitude towards Adventists who protest injustices in their church. It is to be expected that if the ecumenical experimentation is condoned, other serious problems or "obstacles" would arise in the Hungarian union. In trying to minimize the former, Elder Wilson inadvertently acknowledges the latter. Therefore to label the Egervari group as "a countermovement and a self-appointed, independent organization that recognizes no authority" is to merely extend the list of allegations contradicted by the evidence.
Rather than being "in open rebellion to the official policies of the world church," the Egervari group instead defended these policies with remarkable faithfulness, not denied when "the group applied to the Hungarian authorities for recognition as a separate organization." This took place under duress because with the group's final rejection as Seventh-day Adventists by Elder Wilson in January, 1984, the legal recognition required for religious organizations in Hungary ceased for the dissenters. Notwithstanding the emergency label of "Sabbath-keeping, Christ-expecting Christians," the Hungarian government did attest to their religious loyalty when the Honorable Mr. Imre Miklos of the State Office of Church Affairs deemed them to have doctrines and practices identical to an already established denomination, the 'Seventh-day Adventists! Therefore Elder Wilson's criticism that "there is an unfortunate attitude of self-righteousness on the part of the group, and they judge the official church to be in apostasy" is patently false. Equally unsubstantiated is his charge "that they interpret certain distinctive doctrines in a different way."
In conclusion, the report of Elders Ludescher, Thompson, and Wilson on the Hungarian situation is partial and therefore mis-leading, tending only to malign the Christian character of conscientious Seventh-day Adventist believers concerned enough for God's church to stand up for principles espoused by us all.
p 6 -- SUMMARY REPORT - 3 -- This is the third report from the Complaint filed by Americans United in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania at Philadelphia.
FACTUAL ALLEGATIONS -- (Continued) -- "On January 24, 1867, Rep. William E. Dodge of New York introduced a resolution requesting the President of the United States to communicate to the House of Representatives any information the government might receive concerning the removal of the Protestant church at the American Embassy from the city of Rome by order of the Papal government. At this same time the House of Representatives had under consideration the diplomatic and consular appropriation bill. Representative Thomas Wilson of Pennsylvania on January 30, 1867, moved to strike from the civil and diplomatic appropriation bill the items providing for the salary of the American minister in Rome. The legislative provision specifically provided "and no money hereby or otherwise appropriated shall be paid for the support for an American legation at Rome, from and after the 30th day of June, 1867." Congress adopted the resolution cutting off appropriation's for this diplomatic mission. In diplomatic correspondence from William H. Seward, Secretary of the Department of State, to Mr. Rufus King, the United States minister to the Papal States, dated April 20, 1867, Secretary Seward notified Mr. King as follows: Sir: You will be at liberty, under the circumstances, to consult, your own feelings and interests, either to remain at Rome, in charge of the legation, after the 30th day of June, without compensation or provision for your expenses, or to resign, or to leave Rome without resigning on leave of absence, but in every case without compensation, whether remaining in Europe or returning here.
Should you decide withdrawing from Rome, you are at liberty to do so at any time before or after the 30th of June. Whenever you may have prepared to withdraw from the capitol, you will place the archives in the care of the consul at that place taking the proper vouchers therefore, and you will inform the cardinal secretary of the state of that proceeding. You will need to give him no further explanation, although you are entirely at liberty to communicate the contents of this instruction.
"Two attempts were thereafter made by several members of Congress in 1869 and again in 1870 to re-establish diplomatic relations with the Papal States. On January 6, 1869, a debate took place in the House of Representatives on the question of the mission to the Papal States when James Brooks of New York asked Elihu B. Washburne of Illinois, Chairman of the House Appropriations Committee, why the amount of money appropriated for the consulor and diplomatic expenses had been reduced by $7,025. The reply was that the mission located in Rome, which originally had been included, was left out. Thereupon, Congressman Brooks moved that the mission to Rome be inserted and an appropriation of $7,500 be made therefor. Brooks' amendment, however, failed 82-31.
"The second and
final effort to reopen the United States mission to the Papal States occurred
on May 19, 1870, when the House took up the diplomatice and consulor appropriations
bill in the committee of the whole. At that time Representative Brooks
of New York moved to strike out the appropriation for a minister to Guatemala
and to insert Rome. This motion, however, was defeated 71 to 47. During
the period of time from 1868 to 1870, there was substantial political-religious
debate and controversy surrounding the cutting off of formal diplomatic
relations with the Papal States, as well as the attempts to restore the
for the diplomatic missions. Even Catholics were divided as to the advisability
of continuing the American diplomatic mission to Rome. In 1870, Monsignor
Robert Seton, Prothonotary Apostolic, expressed the view of a large number
of Catholics that "the United States minister
p 7 -- of Rome is tantamount to a Protestant spy at the papal court." At the same time American Protestants were protesting any further diplomatic involvement even with the Papal States where the primary responsibility and role of the mission related to commercial and tourist interests. At that time, those opposing the reviving of the mission to Rome pointed out that there was little reason for the continuation of such a mission due to the lack of commerce with Rome. Protestants opposed any reviving of the diplomatic mission due to the church-state controversy that raged as a result of the previous diplomatic mission.
"Any further attempt at reviving the diplomatic mission came to an end on September 20, 1870, when the kingdom of Italy annexed the Papal States. In 1871 the Italian Parliament passed the Law of Guarantee to prevent the Pope from being merely an Italian citizen and the Holy See from coming under the territorial supremacy of Italy. During the period from 1870 until February 11, 1929, the Roman Catholic Church did not exist as a separate state but was a private ecclesiastical entity without territorial pretensions." To Be Continued
"PARANONIA RELIGIOSA ADVENTISTICA" -- One of the most heartless cases of persecution of believers in Czechoslovakia has just become known to Keston College from a reliable source in that country. The persecution of Jindriska and Karel KORINEK began in 1966, when they both were forcibly incarcerated in a psychiatric hospital for their beliefs, and three children were placed in state orphanages. A fourth born while in the hospital was taken at birth and given out for adoption. After their release, Mrs. Korinek attempted to get her baby back, and was apprehended and tried for kidnapping. Surprisingly, the court cleared her, restored her parental rights, and ordered the children returned to her.
Now they are on trial again, behind closed doors. The indictment seeks to have them declared not responsible and therefore subject to indefinite psychiatric hospitalization. In the case of such a verdict there is no appeal. The decision of the court was to be based on a medical report which diagnoses the Korineks as suffering from "paranonia religiosa adventistica" - namely, their profession of the Seventh-day Adventist faith. -- From KNS No. 196, page 2. --- (1985 Feb) ---End---- TOP
1985 Mar -- XVIII - 3(85) -- SINCE WHEN? -- Was PAGAN Rome Followed by CHRISTIAN Rome? -- Was Rome Ever Christian? -- During the time the manuscript on The Times of the Gentiles was being rewritten (See XVIII - 2), a friend in California sent us a copy of a double page from God Cares, Vol. I, which noted an event which had taken place in 1967. The Great Schism of 1054 between the Eastern Orthodox Church and the Roman Catholic Church was healed in 1967. The author of this new commentary on Daniel was Dr. C. Mervyn Maxwell, Chairman of the Church History Department at Andrews University. Knowing what his father, the late Arthur S. Maxwell had said at the 1952 Bible Conference in regard to the prophecy of Luke 21:24 , I purchased the book. At the time I failed to recall that Elder Maxwell had altered his prophetic understanding as a result of his visit to Rome as a member of the press corps to Vatican II Council.
Interested in what is now being published by the church's publishing houses on the book of Daniel - the last publication was Daniel, by Dr. Desmond Ford by SPA in 1978 - I turned to the comments on Daniel 8. To my amazement, I read the following: 7. Both pagan and Christian Rome destroyed "mighty men and the people of the saints" (verse 24); that is, they both persecuted a large number of conscientious Christians and even tortured many of them in the process.
8. Both pagan and Christian Rome "took away the continual burnt offering" and "overthrew the place of his sanctuary." Verse 11. Pagan Rome did this literally - but only in a limited sense, as we shall see later - in A.D. 70 when soldiers under the Roman general (later emperor) Titus set the temple (or Jerusalem sanctuary) on fire, causing its complete destruction and forever terminating its services....
Christian Rome and the sanctuary. But did Christian Rome in any sense take away the continual burnt offering and overthrow the place of His sanctuary?" (p. 161, emphasis his)
Then I wondered what had been written in regard to "the little horn" of Daniel 7. In Section III of "The Message of Daniel 7," Maxwell states - "In view of the importance of the little horn, more space will be devoted to this present section than to most, and it will be divided into two subsections: (a) 'Four Principles' and (b) 'Eight Identifying Marks. ' " The first of the four principles is - "There is more than one antichrist." (emphasis his) Of this he writes: Now some Christians today (called "preterists") say that the antichrist appeared long, long ago. Others (the "futurists") say he hasn't appeared yet. And still others (the "historicists") say that the antichrist has operated throughout church history, revealing himself most especially, thus far, in the medieval Christian church.
In some sense or other they may all be right! (p. 122)
p 2 -- [This is the same position which Dr. Desmond Ford took in his book - Daniel . Ford wrote commenting on these same schools of prophetic interpretation - "It must be said that each of the systems is right in what it affirms and wrong in what it denies." (p. 68, Emphasis Ford's) ,, Yet Ford was defrocked - and not that he shouldn't have been - but - Maxwell is retained in a sensitive teaching position of the Church yet holding the same thing! Is it because who his father was, and who his brothers are?]
After setting forth the other three principles - "2. Daniel's vision, purposefully presents a one-sided picture of Rome" which he blames on God! (Believe it or not! See quotes below); and "3. The New Testament also predicted persecution;" and "4. The New Testament also prophesies apostasy," Maxwell comments: With these four principles in mind - (1 ) that there is more than one antichrist, and we are here trying to identify not "the" antichrist but only the little horn; (2) that in Daniel 7 God purposefully presented a one-sided picture of Rome as a terrible beast in order to emphasize His displeasure at persecution (3), that the New Testament, like the Old, foretold persecution for the church, and (4) that the New Testament also foretold serious apostasy within the church - we are ready to procede with, the eight identifying, marks of the little horn. (pp. 126-127, Emphasis mine)
Then after listing "the eight identifying marks" - this conclusion is drawn: Only one entity really fits all eight of these identifying marks - the Christian church which arose to religiopolitical prominence as the Roman Empire declined and which enjoyed a special influence over the minds of men between the sixth and the eighteenth centuries.
To call this Christian church the "Roman Catholic" Church can be misleading if Protestants assume that the Roman Catholic Church of, say, the sixth century was one big denomination among others, as it is today. Actually the Roman Catholic Church was virtually the Christian church in Western Europe for about a thousand years. Because of this early universality both Protestants and Catholics may regard it as the embodiment of "our" Christian heritage, for better or for worse. (p. 127, Emphasis his.)
Since this is Maxwell's concept of the route of Apostolic Christianity to the present day, then God have mercy on His professed people when Maxwell gets to Revelation 12 in God Cares, Vol. II, which prophecy states that our heritage, as "the remnant of her seed" came via the church in the wilderness.
In view of all of this false coloring given to Romanism - calling the Roman Catholic system - "Christian Rome" - we need to turn our attention to our prophetic heritage, and understand just what God is saying in the prophetic symbolism of Daniel 7. The vision given to Daniel in the first year of Belshazzar, king of Babylon, helps us to place the identity of "the little horn" in an historical setting, and to see how God views this power, not in a biased one-sided presentation, but in reality what it is in the judgment of an omniscient God. [The destruction of this historical setting is what made the "mutterings" of Wheeling so diabolical. (See WWN, XVIII-1) His application of Ford's apotelesmatic concept destroyed this setting.]
Before going into Daniel 7, we need to take a brief look at the word, "antichrist" as used in the New Testament, and how the term is used in our language today. In the Bible, the word -anticristoV - is used only by John in his Epistles (I John 2:18, 22; 4:3 and II John 7). It is the word "Christ" prefaced with the preposition, "anti," which in the Greek, means - "in place of." Our word, "anti," means instead "against." In this sense - our usage - the term, "antichrist," has been applied to the symbolisms - "the little horn" in Daniel 7, the first beast of Revelation 13, and to "the man of sin" as described by Paul in II Thessalonians 2:3. The Greek word for antichrist is never applied in Scriptures to these symbolisms, and for very obvious reasons. These symbols do not represent a power, from God's point of view, as a person in place of the true Messiah, but rather to a power directly opposed to Christ, and energized by Satan himself. This is why to use the term, Christian, and apply it to a power so pictured in Scripture is repugnant and diabolical.
In the night visions, Daniel beheld "four great beasts"
come from the sea, diverse
p 3 -- one from another. They did not come up simultaneously, but followed each other in succession. This is indicated by the numbering: "The first was like... " (v. 4); "and behold another beast, a second,..." (v. 5); and "after this I beheld, and lo another,...(v. 6) Then came "a fourth beast,...'" (v. 7). To indicate that these arose at the same time, as Wheeling does, is a complete distortion of Scripture, and should serve as a warning sign to "Beware, the 'mutterings' of men." These four beasts, while seen in vision as coming up out of the "sea", are declared by the angel to come "out of the earth." (v. 17) Their origin is of the earth, from the "sea of humanity."
"The first is like a lion, and had eagle's wings." (v. 4) Daniel never asked for the meaning of this symbol, for he knew, seeing it before him constantly as he ministered the affairs of state for Nebuchadnezzar. George McCready Price in his book - The Greatest of the Prophets - commented that "the winged lion, or the figure of a lion with wings, is one of the most common on the ancient monuments of Assyria and Babylon."(p. 135) Two of the Old Testament prophets, other than Daniel, note these symbolic representations in speaking of Babylon. Habakkuk wrote of "the Chaldeans, that bitter and hasty nation, which shall march through the breadth of the land." (1:16) He described their swiftness of conquest declaring,"they shall fly as the eagle that hasteth to eat." (v. 8) Jeremiah pictures Nebuchadnezzar as "coming up like a lion" (49:19) and flying "as an eagle." (v. 22).
This understanding of the "lion" in Daniel 7, as Babylon, has been the position taken by Seventh-day Adventists from their very inception. In a booklet published by the "Steam Press of the Seventh-day Adventist Publishing Association" [Battle Creek] in 1863, - which antedates Uriah Smith's commentary on Daniel by ten years - the unnamed author or authors wrote concerning the symbol of the lion: Babylon, as described in this vision, is here fitly represented by a lion, the king of beasts, denoting the glory of that kingdom, and corresponds with the head of gold in chap. ii. The eagle's wings represent the rapidity of its conquests, and the soaring pride of its monarchs." (The Prophecy of Daniel, p. 17)
The other symbols follow quickly in the vision - the bear (Medo-Persia); the leopard with four heads and four wings (Grecia) and, the non-descript beast (Rome). It was this fourth beast and "the little horn", which most concerned Daniel. He said, "Then I would know the truth of the fourth beast... and of the ten horns that were in his head, and of the other which came up." (7:19, 20) In the explanation given, Daniel was told - "The fourth beast shall be the fourth kingdom upon the earth." (v. 23) This establishes the historical setting. Rome was the fourth empire in succession from Babylon. Out of this fourth beast was to arise "ten horns" to be followed by another "little horn" which became the main focus of concern and explanation. It should be observed that all the horns came out of this beast or kingdom. (v. 24) Specific statements are made concerning "the little horn" so that its identity cannot be missed. It would "come up among" the ten horns, plucking "up by the roots" three of the ten. (v. 8). "The little horn" would "arise after" the ten were in place, and would be diverse from all the others. (v. 24). These specifications can apply in history to one and only one power - the Papacy, the government of the Roman Catholic church. (For a complete and detailed documentation of this historical record, see Facts of Faith, pp. 34-69)
Our objective in this Thought Paper is to determine how the Bible views "the little horn" - is it Christian as Maxwell states? Keep in mind that prophecy with its symbolisms gives God's viewpoint of human events and powers - and God does not give a "one-sided" viewpoint, but states it as it is! The first thing established in Daniel 7 is that the power represented by "the little horn" arose in the head of the fourth beast - Rome - PAGAN Rome.
In the book of Revelation,
chapter 13, the first beast - nondescript with seven heads, and ten horns
- is pictured as the embodiment of the symbolisms of Daniel 7. It "was
like unto a leopard" with "the feet of a bear" and had
a mouth "as the mouth of a lion." This is the same sequence
as in Daniel, only in reverse order. Daniel was told that the dominion
of the lion, bear, and leopard would be taken
p 4 -- away but their lives would be "prolonged for a season and a time." (7:12) God tells us in Revelation that the leopard, bear, and lion lived on in the "beast" with seven heads and ten horns. The time of the "beast" - forty and two months - is identical with the time of "the little horn" - a time, times, and a dividing of time. (Rev. 13:5; Dan. 7:25)
The source of this beast's power and thus also "the little horn" is noted as the dragon. (Rev. 13:2) The dragon is declared to be "the Devil and Satan." (12:9) How can a power pictured in prophecy as sustained and empowered by the Devil be called Christian? The beast power is said to open "his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme His name, and His tabernacle, and them that dwell in heaven. (13:6) And such a power - Christian? To so assert is to be a part of the blasphemy itself.
Paul in describing this power, who would sit "in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God" - the "man of sin" - declares that his coming is "after the working of Satan." (II Thess. 2:4, 9) Fenton, following closely the Greek, translates this verse thus - "This outlaw's arrival will be accompanied by the energy of Satan." Yet we now state that this is Christian Rome, and "the embodiment of 'our' Christian heritage."!
What needs to be kept forever in mind - is that PAPAL Rome is merely PAGAN Rome sprinkled with Christian nomenclature. Well has J. Garnier written: The priesthood of Rome claim to be the successors of the apostles, but they have been the chief opposers of the truth taught by the apostles and the chief agents in resuscitating the idolatry which Christ came to destroy. On the other hand they have a true and just claim to be the successors of the pagan priesthood. For not only are the title and office of Pontifex Maximus, and the orders, offices, sacerdotal dresses, symbols, doctrines, sorceries, and idolatries of the priesthood of Rome directly derived from the priesthood of paganism, but they are the rightful and direct successors of the supreme pontiffs and priesthood of ancient Babylon and pagan Rome. (The True Christ and the False Christ, Vol. II, p. 92; Quoted in the Handbook for Bible Students, p. 413, 1922 edition)
This is exactly where the prophecy of Daniel 7 begins - with Babylon. Further, the whole book begins with God's revelation of His superiority over the "god" of Babylon. The dream of Nebuchadnezzar could not be interpreted by his college of cardinals - "the magicians, and the astrologers, and the sorcerers, and the Chaldeans" (2:2) - over which he presided as the Pontifex Maximus. Daniel who represented the God "whose dwelling was not with flesh" (2:11) entered the scene. The whole of the book of Daniel is the representation of that struggle between Michael and Satan, both literally during the lifetime of Daniel, and in prophetic symbolism until the time when Michael shall stand up. (12:1)
Because of the court intrigues of the Babylonian priesthood during the early period of the Persian take-over, the priests fled to Pergamos in Asia Minor, and made it the headquarters of their religion. Christ in Revelation speaks of Pergamos as the place "where Satan's seat is." (2:13) The last pontiff king of Pergamos, Attalus III, bequeathed his dominions and authority to the Roman, people in 133 B.C. From that time on the two lines of Pontifex Maximus were merged into the Roman one. Finally in 378 A.D., the Roman Emperor, Gratian, offered the title and office to Damasus, Bishop of Rome, who accepted it. Thus the Pope as the Pontifix Maxiumus is in Satan's seat. The "dragon" gave him "his power, his seat, and great authority." (Rev. 13:2) By the corruption of true prophetic interpretation, we are being blinded so that we call bad, good, and good, bad.
QUESTION ANSWERED --
p 5 -- Credibility Gap in Adventist Community -- In the first issue of the 1985 Adventist Review, there appeared an interesting question and answer. The question read: "I have heard that the church pays $60,000 to the World Council of Churches. Is this correct?" The answer was given - "No. The Seventh-day Adventist Church is not a member of the World Council of Churches and does not give one cent in support of it." (p. 4) This question and answer points up the credibility gap in the Adventist Community as nothing else could do.
Perhaps first, we should define what we mean by "Adventist Community." The Seventh-day Adventist Community is more than the organized church with headquarters in Takoma Park, Wash. D.C. This church organization does, however, represent the most visible, and large central core of the community. However, unified as it might appear, it is splintered theologically and conceptually the whole range of the spectrum from left to right. At the recent Annual Council (1984), Elder Neal C. Wilson issued "powerful reprimands;" on to the liberals on the left represented by the Association of Adventist Forums; and the other to what was called "the ultra conservative" wing of the Church. These two groups are described further as "diverse constituencies within the Adventist Church." (Ministry, Dec., 1984, pp. 23-24)
Outside of this central core, there is a dissident movement. This movement has been growing ever since the SDA-Evangelical Conferences of 1955-1956. The late Elder M. L. Andreasen, who himself dissented decisively, gave the real reason very succinctly in a letter to a brother in Australia. He wrote - "No, I have not recanted. The denomination is departing from the fundamentals. And I must protest."
Within the last decade, there have arisen a number of other voices, with no knowledge of the real issues, who because of personal egotism want to get into the "act." These have brought with them many side issues, and distorted emphases which have served only to distract and confuse. This has splintered the dissident movement because there was no central core to which they were bound either by allegiance, or by acknowledgment.
These all - whether organization orientated, or dissident - have one thing in common - a credibility gap. Let us consider first the question. Interestingly, this question came to our desk at least six months ago. We were asked to produce the documentation to support this statement which was made by an ordained minister who was one of the leading voices in the dissident movement, and a professed authority on the Church's involvement with the WCC. It was an embarrassment to us, because the statement had been made - it was on tape - without documentation, based on pure assumption. Sensational, yes; appealing to segments of the dissident mentality, yes; playing to the bleachers, yes! These are not worthy motives for those who profess to be holding forth the "fundamentals." This is what is bringing this movement of protest, fathered by that man of God, M. L. Andreasen, into disrepute. In all honesty, let me suggest what some of these men need, and definitely what the "pip-squeaks" who have come upon the scene in the last decade need, is to take time out and at least audit a course in research and documentation, learning how to give proper evaluation even to that which might appear to be factual evidence. While at Andrews University finishing work for a Master's degree, I took a number of courses, some very profitable, others enlightening as to the theological trends in the Church, but the one which has been of most service to me was the course in Research and Bibliography taught at the time by Dr. Leif Kr. Tobiassen. Until those who are dissenting are willing to come to grips with facts, and desist in sensationalism, and "grand-stand" playing, the credibility gap will increase, so also the deception that those who are using such techniques are foisting on concerned laity.
Now to the answer given: In the editorial section of this first Review for 1985, the editor himself had called attention to this question and answer feature of the forthcoming issues of the official organ of the Church. He wrote: "We will
p 6 --give
a full page each week to From Our Readers (p. 4) This means we can run
more letters - a popular feature. On this page we will also provide
factual answers to readers' questions." (p. 2, emphasis
mine) Here in the first such section, the editorial staff has not given
a factual answer, but only a half-truth - which is method of deception.
To say that no money is given to the WCC is just a plain lie. In a letter
dated, February 28,1984, Elder A. J. Patzer, Administrative Assistant
to Neal C. Wilson, stated - "In
the approved world budget which budget is voted at each Annual Council,
a small token payment is included for useful information made available
to the General Conference by these organizations [WCC
& NCC]. The appropriations for payment are as follows:
This makes a total of $8,000 appropriated toward the work of either the WCC and/or the NCC. This is a far cry from either the $60,000 figure used in the dissident's assumption, or the "does not pay one cent" allegation in the Adventist Review. In either case a credibility gap is created.
There are two items listed by Patzer which create questions. Half of the amount appropriated - $4,000 - goes toward the Administration costs of either the WCC and/or the NCC. This needs to be amplified and explained.
The part of the answer which could be considered truthful - "The Seventh-day Adventist Church is not a member of the World Council of Churches" - has some problems. Technically, this is so; but what about what could be called' a "back door" access? In the letter which Elder Lewis L. Szerecz sent to the Editor of the Adventist Review, he indicated that the status of the Seventh-day Adventist church leaders present "was of a more intimate nature than that of the Roman Catholic Church, which had only "Delegated Observers" present at the recent WCC Assembly in Vancouver, British Columbia. (See WWN, XVIII - 2, p. 5, col. 1) This deserves a fuller exposure.
There can be no question that a Seventh-day Adventist sits on the Faith and Order Commission of the WCC. Dr. Earle Hilgert was first appointed in 1967. He has since been replaced by Dr. Raoul Dederen of Andrews University. Here again there is a technicality. The Church per se is not represented. The Central Committee of the WCC picked the Seventh-day Adventist to serve. The choice was approved by the leadership of the Church. He thus sits as an individual, and not as a representative of the Church.
When Raymond F. Cottrell, as Associate Editor of the Review in 1967 expressed a deep "regret that SDA's do not find it possible, as an organization, to be more closely associated" with the WCC, he at the same "time suggested that "if the Secretariat on Faith and Order, for instance, were to invite SDA's to appoint someone competent in that area to meet with their group from time to time and represent the SDA point of view, we could accept such an invitation with a clear conscience." (R&H, April 6, 19671 p. 13) He tried to cover this suggestion as "an opportunity to witness." But much more was involved.
While the WCC does
of itself as "a universal authority controlling what Christians
should believe and do;" they are, however, striving as a community
of churches to "realize the goal of visible Church unity." To
assist this "community"
"towards this goal, the Faith and Order Commission of the World Council
provides theological support for the efforts the churches are making towards
unity. Indeed the commission has been charged by the Council members
to keep always before them their accepted obligation to work towards;
manifesting more visibly God's gift of Church unity. So it is that the
stated aim of the Commission is ' to proclaim the oneness of the Church
of Jesus Christ and to call the churches to the goal of visible unity
in one faith and one eucharistic fellowship, expressed in common
p 7 -- worship and common life in Christ, in order that the world might believe.' (By-Laws)" (Baptism, Eucharist, and Ministry, pp. vii & viii; Faith and Order Paper #11, Emphasis mine)
This is what the Church through its official organ asked to become a part of in 1967. Then we forwarded the whole process toward "Church unity" by placing in the Statement of Beliefs voted at Dallas, Texas, in 1980, the full Constitutional statement of the WCC required for membership in that organization. Sure, the editor of the Adventist Review can write, we are not members of the WCC, and be technically correct, but to leave it there is deceptive. He was at the World Assembly of the WCC, and so cannot plead ignorance as to our status, and relationship to the WCC.
There is still another aspect to this relationship between the SDA Church and the WCC which has not been explained. Dr. B. B. Beach in the co-authored book So Much in Common - wrote: "As a kind of corollary to the Geneva consultations, Conversations began in 1969 in the United States between Seventh-day Adventists and a WCC appointed group. While each Conversation will follow its own style and choose its own subject matter, those responsible for the Conversations on both sides of the Atlantic are keeping in touch with each other." (p.101)
Various segments within the Adventist community have some decisions to face. Those within the central "core" must decide even as a segment of the ministry and laity decided in Hungary as to where they stand on the SDA/WCC relationships. The dissidents both within the body and on the perimeter face a different choice, but equally as vital. All involved in the issue over the "departure from the fundamentals" - as well as, many who are still unaware of what has taken place - are looking for the Lord's return and Heaven. Their allegiance is being tested. They today are standing, as it were with mother Eve, before two trees - only this time the tree of the knowledge of good and evil has been greatly multiplied. One tree is the tree of truth, pure and unadulterated, the tree of life. The other trees are represented in those voices which profess to be proclaiming righteousness by faith, and loudly voice their adherence to fundamental Adventism, but who mix in their publications and/or their presentations, error, disguised as truth. We have been counseled that we need to know that we know what is truth. When a message comes to us, we are advised to "go to the Bible,... and if it does not bear the test, it is not true." (R&H, Feb. 18, 1890) This was excellent counsel back there when the message of righteousness by faith was being questioned, it is sound counsel now with every wind of doctrine blowing - Go to the Bible, and know that you know that book.
IS THE LAMB --
A saint is a child of God growing up into a mature holy one, because He who begat him, is Himself a Holy One. John 1:12-13. ---(1985 Mar) ---