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WWN 1983 Jan - Mar


1983 Jan -- XVI - 1(83 ) -- TRUTH UNDER ATTACK -- Hierarchy Decline To Defend Historic Adventism -- On three consecutive Sunday evenings in September and October of 1982, The John Ankerberg Show televised over the Christian Broadcasting Network a program on Seventh-day Adventists at the Crossroads. Special guests on these three presentations were Dr. Desmond Ford and Pastor Walter Rea. Introducing each telecast, the following was stated:      "Many people know Adventists as the people who go to church on Saturday; others know them as the people who don't eat meat. They are perhaps best known for their outstanding hospitals and clinics. But the Seventh-day Adventist Church is in turmoil and stands at the most critical crossroads in its history. Which way will this great church go? Those invited to speak for it but declined the invitation were Dr. Neal Wilson, President, General Conference; Dr. Robert Olsen, Chairman, the Ellen G. White Estate; Dr. Victor Cooper, Associate Director [Communications Department], General Conference of SDA; Mr. Warren Johns, Associate Editor, Ministry magazine, and Dr. William Johnsson, Associate Editor [now, Editor-in-Chief], Adventist Review. (Transcript, p. 1-1)

Besides those named in the telecast, others were also contacted but were "out" and did not choose to return the call, even though an 800 number was given to call. Among these were Dr. Gerhard Hasel, Dean of the Theological Seminary. The producers of the Ankerberg Show were anxious to have representation from the Church to present what they thought the leadership, stood for - the historic position - so the program would have balance, and the audience be able to weigh the divergent points of view. The leadership of the Church was given the opportunity, if they could not come for legitimate reasons, to suggest a person or persons who could speak for them, and present the historic teaching of the Church.

In speaking with a member of the Ankerberg staff both by telephone, and in person, I asked if any of the following persons contacted them and asked to appear in behalf of the Church's historic position:  Ron Spears, Charles Wheeling, Vance Ferrell, Morris Venden, Colin Standish, and Lewis Walton. The answer in each instance was negative. Yet these men, either in writing or in special speaking appointments, or both, profess to stand for historic Adventism. These seek to assure the laity all is well, and that the Church has not departed from the faith. They would have the laity believe that the only "bad guys" are Ford and Rea; yet when opportunity is given them publicly to defend their faith, other than before a "captive audience," they are no where to be found.

Each of the above noted individuals could possibly plead they did not know such a show was in preparation, or was being aired on television. However, the leadership of the Church did know, and were given an opportunity to name someone to defend

p 2 -- the teachings of the Church. Yet none of these were recommended by the hierarchy and the hierarchy does know of their activities. One, a lawyer, even has paperback books coming from the Church press, and promoted widely in the publications of the Church. This should tell us something. Are these men being used - wittingly, or unwittingly - as a facade for the hierarchy to keep the laity soothed so that their tithe dollars flow through "proper channels"? In reality is the true position of the hierarchy so close to Ford and Rea, that these men who profess to speak for the historic position of the Church could not rightly represent them, and thus they were not recommended? Does this make these men "dupes" as they continue to support the hierarchy and urge the laity to do so? And who shall answer for the deception thus practiced on the laity?

It also needs to be kept in mind that in the immediate area where the telecast was made - Chattanooga - there are two institutions of Adventism Southern College of Adventists, and Wildwood Institute headed by Elder W. D. Frazee. There are problems at Southern College in the Department of Religion, but these have not been fairly nor accurately presented by Vance Ferrell in his publications. However, the case at Wildwood is different. Their problem is that the Institution has not provided an adequate educational program so that neither the students nor the staff can stand up for the truth in a public challenge, but rely wholly on "quotes" which would only play into the hands of the adversaries.

Before discussing certain fundamental issues raised on the telecast, there are two other items which need to be noticed:  1)  Dr. Desmond Ford in his first remarks on the telecast stated regarding his relationship as a Seventh-day Adventist - "I am one." (1-1) This is true only in a technical sense - he is still a member of the Church in good and regular standing. However, no one hearing him, nor reading his publications could honestly conclude that he was a real Seventh-day Adventist in doctrine and belief.  2)  When this whole present controversy began with Dr. Ford's presentation on the Pacific Union College campus at a meeting of the Association of Adventist Forums, one of his first remarks indicated that from his first contacts with the teachings of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, he had serious doubts in regard to the Sanctuary doctrine. He stated:       "Thirty-five years ago in Sidney, Australia, as an Anglican, or I think you call them Episcopalians over here, in the city of Sidney, in my home in the suburbs, I was reading Hebrews, chapter 9. At that time, I was listening to the Advent Radio Church each Sunday, and I had begun to collect the books of Ellen G. White from second hand book shops around Sidney. As I was reading Hebrews 9 that day, I said, [to myself] ' That's strange, this is different from what the Adventists are saying. There is a problem here.' The problem wasn't solved by the time I was baptized." (From Recording by Adventist Tape Service)

It must be recognized that Ford and Rea present a two-pronged attack on the historic position of the Church. Rea's approach is very simple - Ellen G. White is the source of the Church's teachings, and since she is a fraud, the whole doctrinal schema is fraudulent. On the other hand Ford professes to respect Ellen G. White as an inspired writer, but states that the Church's position on the Sanctuary doctrine cannot be defended from the Bible. This leads to the same ultimate conclusion as Rea, for if the Church's position can't be defended from the Scriptures, then Ellen G. White's approbation of the fundamental teaching of the Sanctuary doctrine places her in contradiction to the Bible, and therefore, a false prophet.

The bottom line is, therefore, reduced to simplest terms; do the unique teachings of the Church rest solely on the Bible and the Bible only, apart from any confirmation given in the writings of Ellen G. White? This issue came through clearly in the telecasts.

Ford was asked to define the Adventist "Sanctuary Doctrine." Concerning this he stated:      "The Adventist Sanctuary Doctrine affirms that in 1844 our Lord Jesus Christ entered the second apartment of the Heavenly

p 3 -- Sanctuary, or as some would say entered upon a 'second phase of His ministry,' this being a work of investigative judgment - a work that has now been in procedure [sic] for over 140 years, which is to determine who shall be saved and who should be lost. A review of the saints, the way it is often presented, has taken assurance from the vast membership of the church." (1-1, 1-2)

Then, the Moderator, John Ankerberg, sought to clarify and amplify the position as stated by Dr. Ford. He noted:      "For those who are not Seventh-day Adventists, let's pause here to clarify what Dr. Ford just said. Seventh-day Adventists believe that Daniel 8:14 supports their view that Jesus moved from one compartment of the Heavenly Sanctuary to another in 1844. At that point, Jesus began an investigative judgment of all Christians. Ellen White wrote: 'Attended by heavenly angels our great High Priest enters the Holy of Holies and there appears in the presence of God to perform the work of investigative judgment and to make atonement for all who are shown to be entitled to its benefits.' But a number of Seventh-day Adventists, like Dr. Ford, are questioning this. They believe the Bible teaches that the atonement was completed at the cross through the shed blood of Christ and that believers' sins are forgiven once for all at the moment of salvation. However, Ellen White has written, 'The blood of Christ, while it was to release the repentant sinner from the condemnation of the law, was not to cancel the sin. It would stand on record in the Sanctuary until the final atonement.'" (1-2)

It should be observed that the impression given is that the sanctuary teaching of the Seventh-day Adventist Church is based solely on the writings of Ellen G. White.

As the discussion continued, involving William Miller and the Great Disappointment in 1844, Ankerberg asked - "In other words, would you say that it was a face-saving device?" referring to the resulting understanding of the antitypical work of Christ as prefigured by the Day of Atonement. (1-3) This question reveals some of the possible background reading which Ankerberg did in preparation for the telecast - Barnhouse in Eternity, September, 1956, "Are Seventh-day, Adventists Christians?" The answers and exchange involving both Rea and Ford are interesting at this point, and revealing as to emphases. We quote:
Ford:   Most theologians from outside looking at it have drawn that conclusion, particularly inasmuch as Adventists had several other explanations -- shut door, going into the marriage, receiving the kingdom -- there were a number of other theological devices that were tried for a while, found wanting and given away before this one was adopted. James White, husband of Ellen White, opposed this one in print in the church paper when it originally came out, but in 1857 it took control.
Ankerberg:   Okay. And so, Jesus was supposed to come back to the earthly sanctuary, or the earth - He didn't come; and so, was it Ellen G. White that said? ....
Ford:   No. Ellen White did not devise a single doctrine of the Adventist church, but she did write on it after it had been accepted by the church.
Ankerberg:   Okay. But she accepted and....
Ford:   Promogated [sic] it,
Rea:    She endorsed it.
Ankerberg:   She endorsed it, that Jesus had not come to this sanctuary but had just switched compartments in the heavenly. (1-4)

At this point we come to the bottom line of the whole issue. The name, Seventh-day Adventist is distinctive, noting two fundamental beliefs - the binding obligation of the Fourth Commandment, and the recognition that Jesus promised, to return again. However, these beliefs are not unique, as there are others who likewise believe the same things, who are not Seventh-day Adventists. Seventh-day Adventism is unique for two basic concepts - 1)  The prophecy of Daniel 8:14 indicating 1844, as the terminus of the prophecy given and explained to Daniel by the angel Gabriel as recorded in Daniel 8 and 9. And  2)  That in 1844, Jesus Christ as High Priest began a ministry in the second apartment of the heavenly sanctuary. Now the question is simple - What part did

p 4 -- Ellen G. White play in the discovery and foundational presentation of these two doctrines unique to Adventism? The answer is equally as simple - None! This is not stated to cast in anyway a question mark on the possession or use of the prophetic gift by Ellen G. White, but merely to call attention to the facts as they are. This is important.

Now what are the facts? The first doctrine unique to Adventist theology - the significance and meaning of Daniel 8:14 was developed and promulgated by William Miller, before Ellen G White was even born. This doctrine resulted from a serious study on the part of Miller using only the Bible and a Cruden's Concordance. Bliss in his Memoirs of William Miller, quotes Miller himself in describing how he studied the Scriptures. It reads:        "I determined to lay aside all my presuppositions, to thoroughly compare Scripture with Scripture, and to pursue its study in a regular and methodical manner. I commenced with Genesis, and read verse by verse, proceeding no faster than the meaning of the several passages should be unfolded as to leave me free from embarrassment respecting any mysticisms or contradictions. Whenever I found anything obscure, my practice was to compare it with all collateral passages; and by the help of Cruden, I examined all texts of Scripture in which were found any of the prominent words contained in any obscure portion. Then, by letting every word have its proper bearing on the subject of the text, if my view of it harmonized with every other collateral passage in the Bible, it ceased to be a difficulty. In this way I pursued the study of the Bible, in my first pursual of it, for about two years, and was fully satisfied that it was its own interpreter. I found that, by a comparison of Scripture with history, all the prophecies, as far as they have been fulfilled, had been fulfilled literally;..." (pp. 69-70)

It was in 1818, at the close of two years of study which included the prophecy of Daniel 8 & 9, that William Miller came "to the solemn conclusion, that in about twenty-five years from that time all the affairs of our present state would be wound up." (Ibid., p. 76) Further Bliss, in his biography of Miller listed ten prophetic interpretations which he taught, among these are listed - "The Commencement of the Seventy Weeks of Dan. 9th," and "Their connection with the 2300 days of Dan. 8th." Commenting on these prophetic positions and the reaction of Miller's enemies to them, Bliss stated:      "Mr. Miller laid no claim to originality in his position respecting any of the above (Ten) points; but maintained that they were established opinions of the church, and, being so, that his conclusions from these premises were well sustained by human as well as divine teachings. While his opponents attacked the view he took on these points, no one of them assailed the whole; but each admitted his correctness on some of the points; and, among them, the whole were admitted." (Ibid., p. 185, emphasis his)

THE SECOND UNIQUE TEACHING -- In noting the second unique teaching of Adventism - the ministry of Christ in the second apartment of the Heavenly Sanctuary - we find some complications, not because the facts which could have been known were not clear, but because we did not consider these facts, but rather relied on what we thought Ellen G. White referred to in a Special Testimony. In this understanding, I have likewise been guilty. When on general principles that all doctrine must be based solely on the Bible, I stated in a question and answer session that Ellen G. White was not involved in the basic formulation of the High Priestly ministry of Christ in the second apartment of the Heavenly Sanctuary, I was publicly challenged by a respected minister who used the Special Testimony as the basis for the challenge. It was at that point, I began a thorough research of the origin of this unique doctrine.

First let us note what this Special Testimony states:      "Many people do not realize how firmly the foundation of our faith has been laid. My husband, Elder Joseph Bates, Father Pierce, Elder Edson and others who were keen, noble and true, were among those who, after the passing of time in 1844, searched for truth as for hidden treasure. I met with them, and we studied and prayed earnestly. Of ten we remained together

p 5 -- until late at night, and sometimes through the entire night, praying for light and studying the word. Again and again these brethren came together to study the Bible, in order that they might know its meaning, and be prepared to teach it with power. When they came to a point in their study where they said, ' We can do nothing more,' the Spirit of the Lord would come upon me, I would be taken off in vision, and a clear explanation of the passages we had been studying would be given me, with instruction as to how we were to labor and teach effectively. Thus light was given that helped us to understand the scriptures in regard to Christ, His mission, and His priesthood. A line of truth extending from that time to the time when we shall enter the city of God was made plain to me, and I gave to others the instruction that the Lord had given me. " (Special Testimonies, Series B, #2, pp. 56-57)

This statement written at the time of the Kellogg controversy constituted an historical recall of what took place "after the passing of time in 1844" as the various doctrines of the Church were being worked out through prayer, Bible study, and the confirmation of the Holy Spirit. Two questions, therefore follow:  1)  When was the basic formulation of the ministry of Christ in the second apartment of the Heavenly Sanctuary worked out? On this basic foundation all other doctrinal concepts pertaining to the Heavenly ministry were based. And  2)  When did the meetings as described by Ellen G. White take place, if they were not at the same time?

The historical records indicate that on the morning of October 23, 1844, Hiram Edson of Port Gibson, New York, and some others who had gathered together the previous day, went to Edson's barn for a prayer season, and remained in prayer "until the conviction came that their prayers had been heard and accepted, and that light would be given and their disappointment explained." Following the prayer service, Edson invited one of his companions to go with him to encourage some of the brethren who had left for their homes at dawn. "They shunned the road to avoid scoffers and crossed Edson's field, where the corn was still in the shock, and the pumpkins were on the vines. Suddenly Edson stopped. As he stood there an overwhelming conviction came over him ' that instead of our High Priest coming out of the Most Holy of the heavenly sanctuary to come to this earth on the tenth day of the seventh month, at the end of the 2300 days, he had for the first time entered on that day the second apartment of that sanctuary and that he had a work to perform in the Most Holy before coming to this earth.'" (SDA Encyclopedia, p. 364) His companion - thought to be Crosier - who also deep in thought had continued walking on until he missed Edson by his side. He turned and asked him why he had paused. To this Edson replied - "The Lord was answering our morning prayer, giving light with regard to our disappointment. (Ibid.)

In the winter of 1844 Edson, Dr. F. B. Hahn, and 0. R L. Crosier, a protégé and younger associate of these men, joined in a study group to explore from the Bible the concepts which had impressed the mind of Edson. Their joint conclusions were first published in the Day-Dawn of Canadaigua, New York, and then more fully in the Day-Star, which was issued at Cincinnati, Ohio. The initial articles came to the attention of Bates and White. This led to correspondence between the New England Adventists, and these brethren in Western New York. A meeting was arranged between the brethren which Bates attended, while White was unable to go.

While Ellen G. White, in 1847, wrote that the Lord showed her in vision a year previous that Crosier had the true light on the sanctuary (Word to the Little Flock, p. 12) internal evidence of the Special Testimony clearly reveals that she could not have been present at the time Edson, Hahn, and Crosier were studying the Scripture's in search for the truth in regard to the ministry of Jesus Christ in the second apartment of the heavenly sanctuary. The Special Testimony stated, "my husband, Elder Joseph Bates" as being present. Ellen Harmon did not become Ellen G. White till 1846 (Life Sketches, p. 97). She had not even met Bates until the same year. (Ibid, p. 95) In fact, neither Bates, nor White learned about the study of the New York trio until it was published in the Spring of 1845. To what meetings then was Ellen G. White

p 6 -- referring when she recalled the events "after the passing of time in 1844"? To the Bible Conferences of 1848! Of these we read:      "Such men as Joseph Bates, Hiram Edson, James White, Father Pierce, and others - about fifty in number - came together in a series of Bible conferences at Rocky Hill, Connecticut April 20-24, 1848, in Albert Belden's house; in Volney, New York, beginning August 18, Brother Arnold's barn; in Port Gibson, New York, August 27, 28, in Hiram Edson's barn; again at Rocky Hill, Connecticut, September 8, 9; and in Topsham, Maine, October 20-22 in Brother Howland's house." (Our Firm Foundation,- Vol. I, p. 32)

From these past experiences, we can learn some very valuable lessons, and blunt the attack on truth. While Miller had faithfully studied the Scriptures, he did not perceive the point that the "sanctuary" to be cleansed at the close of the 2300 day prophecy was the heavenly. He thought it was this earth. Edson, Hahn, and Crosier building on the foundation laid by Miller - recognizing his prophetic explanation as unquestionable developed the truth to a higher plane of perception. There are details in the study of the New York trio that need to be amended to be brought into line with Scripture, but this doesn't justify or give cause for the tearing down and repudiation of the foundation laid by careful Bible study and prayer. The two unique teachings of Adventism stand upon the Bible and the Bible only. To quote Ellen G. White to prove these doctrines is to cloud the issue. To do so undermines how well the foundation of our faith has been laid in God's excellent Word.

It is true Ellen G. White "endorsed" the study of Edson, Hahn, and Crosier, but she did not influence that study, but in fact, it can be shown she was influenced rather by it.

The John Ankerberg Show was based upon an assumption in the Time magazine which stated that when Christ did not come as expected on October 22, 1844, Ellen G. White "a 'messenger' of God and interpreter of the Bible, said she received a vision explaining that on October 22, Christ entered a new 'sanctuary' in heaven to begin 'investigative judgment' of the lives and works of believers." (Time, Aug 2, 1982, p. 49) It was to this article in Time that John Ankerberg referred as he opened his three-series telecast - "Seventh-day Adventism at the Crossroads." (1-1) Thus perhaps unwittingly, the emphasis of the Show supported a distortion of history, and abetted by Ford and Rea became an open attack on Truth as it is in Jesus. For the hierarchy to decline to defend truth under such circumstances - and the invitation was still open after the first show had been broadcast - is the highest kind of treason against the God of heaven Who committed this truth to the Advent Movement.

BACCHIOCCHI "WRITES" AGAIN -- In a letter dated, June 25, 1982, Dr. Samuele Bacchiocchi, Professor of Religion at Andrews University, wrote the following comments to Dr. James P. Wesberry, Editor, Sunday, the quarterly publication of the Lord's Day Alliance of the United States:       "You will be pleased to know that my book Divine Rest for Human Restlessness has already been reprinted four times in English and has been translated in seven languages. The French edition is being prepared by a Belgian Benedictine monk in cooperation with a Catholic publisher in Paris....
"I will be glad to mail to you some additional complimentary copies which you can freely use for you outreach endeavors. Moreover, you have my full permission to quote at any length or any portion of the book or of my message given to the Alliance. Words fail to express my appreciation for all you have done for me, especially through your most gracious and generous foreword to my book. I always read with eagerness your Sunday magazine.

p 7 -- "You will be pleased to know that I am presently engaged practically every weekend in conducting what we call 'Festival of the Sabbath Seminars.' The purpose of this seminar is to help the believer discover how the proper celebration of the Sabbath can help them in experiencing divine rest and peace in their lives.
"We fondly remember your visit to our campus and the gracious words that you spoke.
"May the Lord continue to richly bless your life and leadership."

GEORGI VINS COMMENTS ON SHELKOV -- In a letter dated, September 13, 1982, to a member of the staff of the Foundation, Georgi P. Vins makes this comment regarding Shelkov:      "The Adventist leader Vladimir Shelkov (who had spent 23 years of his life in labor camps) died in January, 1980, at a strict regime labor camp where I also had been imprisoned. Shelkov was from the southern part of the Soviet Union and was sent to Northern Siberia where extreme temperatures are equal to death sentences. There was very little food in this camp and the only type of meat was pork (intestines). Due to his abstinence from this type of food, he was on a near starvation level."

Elder Rostislav N. Galetsky is in a labor camp near where Shelkov was confined. So far we have received and forwarded to the proper Russian authorities 28 petitions with 477 names coming from Canada, Australia, and the United States. Non-Adventist friends have sent us 110 petitions with 2,112 names. These are now in the process of being duplicated and forwarded. We appreciate what has been done by those receiving the thought paper, and say, God bless you for your efforts.

What if all who receive the thought paper had responded as did the few, or as did concerned non-Adventists?

THE NATIONAL SUNDAY LAW -- This was the subject of a book (#18) which formed a part of the The Sentinel Library. This book contained the argument of Alonzo T. Jones before the United States Senate Committee an Education and Labor, December 13, 1888, against the national Sunday bill introduced by Senator Blair. This publication has been facsimile reproduced by the Paradise View family. It contains material we all need to know. It can be obtained on a donation basis by writing to:      Mr. Ralph Hinchman, Paradise View, Rt. #1 Barronett, WI 54813

We are happy that God has placed a burden on the hearts of His children to reproduce some of these valuable publications of the past, that we might be benefited as we face the issues before us.

E. HARMON - A PEN NAME? -- The following announcement appeared in a recent issue of the paper published by the SDA Missionary Foundation of Phoenix, Arizona:    "In two of our books with the new titles - 'Man of Destiny' - and, 'Universe in Conflict' - we have used E. Harmon as a pen name for E. G. White. We have done this to get away from prejudice toward our literature. We have received a favorable response to this change."

No one can question the title changes - they are good. But why a "pen name" never used by Ellen G. White herself. Are we unable to face reality? One branch of the Shepherd's Rod is reproducing Houteff s writings with his name omitted - no doubt for the same reason.

Perhaps we should publish Psalms 23 & 51 under a pen name. Would that help our appreciation of those Psalms?

"Prove all things; hold fast that which is good." (I Thess. 5:21) --- (1983 Jan) --- End --- TOP

1983 Feb -- XVI - 2(83) -- MILLER WRONG ON ONE POINT ONLY -- Ankerberg Charges William Miller With Five Wrong Assumptions -- Ford and Rea Assent -- During the first telecast of the Ankerberg Show which featured "Seventh-day Adventism at the Crossroads," John Ankerberg asked the question - "Why do we even need a Sanctuary doctrine?" (Transcript 1-2) To this Dr. Desmond Ford replied: "For [the] Seventh-day Adventist, [the] Sanctuary Doctrine grew out of the Miller Revival - the Advent Revival of 1844 (Ibid.) A discussion as to where William Miller found a basis for his conclusion that Jesus would return in 1844, followed. Then Mr. Ankerberg summarized for the viewers, prefacing his remarks with a question. He said:       "How did William Miller pick the date of 1844 A.D. as the time Jesus would return to earth? He made at least five wrong assumptions to do so. First, he assumed two unrelated passages of Scripture - Daniel 8:14 and Daniel 9:24 - were actually related. Second, in Daniel 8:14 he assumed that the 2300 days mentioned could mean 2300 years. He was wrong. The Hebrew literally reads, ' 2,300 evenings and mornings,' which total 1,150 whole days. Third, he further assumed from Daniel 8:14 that in the words, ' Then shall the sanctuary be cleansed,' that the sanctuary stood for the whole earth, and 'cleansed' stood for Jesus leaving Heaven and coming to earth. Again he was wrong. The Hebrew word for 'cleansed' literally means ' vindicated.' Fourth, in the other verse. - Daniel 9:24 - he assumed that when the seventy-sevens, or 490 years were decreed, the word 'decreed' could be translated 'cut off from.' He was wrong. The Hebrew literally means decreed or determined. He further postulated the 490 years mentioned here were 'cut off from' the 2,300 years postulated in the other passage of Daniel 8:14. Fifth, from these two non-related texts, he joined his wrongly translated words in those texts to assume he knew when the 2,300 years began and when they would end. This postulated date, mixed with his assumption that the cleansing of the sanctuary stood for Jesus coming to earth led Miller to wrongly conclude that Jesus would come back to the earth on October 22, 1844 A.D. Later in a vision, Ellen G. White claimed it was revealed to her that Jesus did not come to earth, or ' the earthly sanctuary,' as she called it, rather, on October 22, 1844, Jesus changed His location in Heaven and entered the Heavenly Sanctuary, or Holy of Holies." (1-3)

Three of the five points really deal with one issue only - the relationship of Daniel 8:14 with Daniel 9:24-27. The

p 2 -- second point questions the meaning of the 2300 Days as understood by Seventh-day Adventists. The third point is admitted in part, and that part has always been recognized by Seventh-day Adventists as an error in Miller's assumptions. This has to do with the fact that "the cleansing of the sanctuary," did not mean the cleansing of this earth by fire as understood by Miller. He was right, however, that the word - cleansed - is the correct translation of Daniel 8:14. To all of these assumptions of Miller, Mr. Ankerberg, assuming them to be in error, then draws a faulty conclusion that the ultimate understanding of the meaning of the prophecy of Daniel and its interpretation resulted from a vision of Ellen G. White. To this summary of Mr. Ankerberg, neither Ford nor Rea dissented.

What is the truth?

Interrelationship of Daniel 8 & 9 -- Was William Miller correct when he associated together Daniel 8:14 and 9:24-27? Yes, he was correct from contextual and linguistic evidence. Let us note first contextual evidence. After receiving a vision of a ram, he-goat, and a little horn, he heard the voice of an heavenly being asking a series of questions - "How long shall be the vision, the daily, and the transgression of desolation, to give both the sanctuary and the host to be trodden under foot?" (Dan. 8:13) He was then told the answer - "Unto two thousand and three hundred days, then shall the sanctuary be cleansed." This concluded the vision. Daniel wanted an explanation. He then heard a commission given "Gabriel make this man to understand the vision." (8:16) However, the eighth closes with the words - "I was astonished at the vision, but none understood it." The part of the vision left unexplained involved the 2300 days, or as noted "the vision of the evening and morning." (verse 26)

The ninth chapter - describing events some eleven years later - tells of Daniel searching the books of Jeremiah, and entering into prayer concerning the prophecy found there. While Daniel is praying Gabriel comes. Daniel records it thus: "Yea, whiles I was speaking in prayer, even the man Gabriel, whom I had seen in the vision at the beginning." (9:21) Daniel related the coming of Gabriel to the prior vision he had seen which had as yet not been fully explained. Gabriel himself confirms this understanding. He tells Daniel - "I am now come forth to give thee skill and understanding. ... Understand the matter and,consider the vision." (9:22-23) He gave Daniel no additional vision - and the only previous vision which Daniel had not understood was the 2300 days. Contextually, Miller was absolutely correct in associating these two chapters.

Now to the linguistic connection:   In these two chapters, there are two Hebrew words used for the word vision. How they are used serves as an important link between Daniel 8:14 and 9:24-27. One
word for vision is ghah-zohn, the other, mar-eh. The word - ghah-zohn - is used to refer to the vision as a whole (Dan. 8:1-3) , while the word - mar-eh - is used to refer to the 2300 days specifically. Observe closely how the word - mar-eh - is used. In Daniel 8:14, the word - "days" - is not from the usual word - yohm - but rather, "evenings (and) mornings." Thus this part of the vision is noted as "the vision of the evening and the morning." (8:26) In this instance, the word for vision is mar-eh. Gabriel was specifically instructed to make Daniel understand the vision - the word being - mar-eh. (8:16) When Daniel expressed astonishment at the vision, indicating that none understood it, the word is mar- eh. (8:27) When Gabriel returns, Daniel observes that he is the one whom he had seen in the vision - ghah-zohn -at the beginning, but when Gabriel tells Daniel to "consider the vision," the word is again, mar-eh. Gabriel then launches into the matter of the "seventy weeks." (Dan. 9:23-24) Further, when Gabriel tells Daniel that during the "seventy weeks" a seal is to be placed upon the vision, it is the whole ghah-zohn - to which Gabriel refers, and the only prior vision is the vision of Daniel 8. Again on the basis of linguistic evidence, William Miller was correct in his assumptions that related Daniel 8:14 and 9:24-27.

p 3 -- Evenings and Mornings -- William Miller interpreted the 2300 evenings and mornings as full prophetic days. Ankerberg calls this a false assumption and stated that this was really only 1150 literal days. Prior to the pronouncement made to Daniel concerning the 2300 days, there had been a revelation concerning the "daily." In fact it had been included as a part of the question which evoked the response concerning the 2300 evenings and mornings. (Dan. 8:13-14) The word for "daily" - tamid - is used as either an adjective or an adverb, but in Daniel it appears as a substantive. An English comparison would be a predicate adjective. The first use of tamid in the Bible as an adjective is in Exodus 29:42. There it is translated, "continual," and refers to the daily sacrifice morning and evening. Thus the very time of the tamid burnt offering - morning and evening - is used by the one speaking to Daniel to show the association of the prophetic time - days - with the symbolism of the sanctuary services which served as a shadow of the Heavenly. But there is a distinct difference. The continual burnt offering is always referred to in sequence of morning and evening. While borrowing the same words in place of the usual Hebrew word for days - yohm - the order is made to conform to the definition of a whole days as found in Genesis 1:5 - "There was evening, and there was morning, day one." William Miller in his assumption that the 2300 evenings and mornings were full days, and not half days was correct.

"Cleansed" or "Vindicated"? -- Ankerberg in the telecast stated - "The Hebrew word for 'cleansed' literally means 'vindicated."' (1-3) He is of course referring again to Daniel 8:14. The word in the Hebrew is tzah-dak. This is to be found in the Massoretic text of the Hebrew scriptures and can be translated, "vindicated," or "justified" as indicated in the margin of the KJV. That this word - tzah-dak - is the word used by Daniel when he penned the answer given to him in Daniel 8:14 is open to serious question. The Massoretic Text is dated "between the 6th and 8th centuries [A.D.]. It is probable that the present text became fixed as early as the 2nd century A.D., but even this earlier date leaves a long interval between the original autographs of the 0. T. writers and our present text. Since the fixing of the Massoretic Text the task of preserving and transmitting the sacred books has been carried out with the greatest care and fidelity, with the result that the text has undergone practically no change of any real importance; but before that date, owing to various causes, it is beyond dispute that a large number of corruptions were introduced into the Hebrew text." (Encyclopaedia Britannica, Vol. 3, p. 504, 1958 edition) Jerome translating into the Latin in the 4th century was evidently using a text of Daniel which contained a word meaning "cleansed," as the Vulgate reads - mundabitur - "shall be cleansed." Then the LXX which can be dated back to 132 B.C., translated into the Greek the word used by Daniel as katharisthesetai, again, "shall be cleansed." Our English word, catharsis, is derived from the basis of this Greek word. Recent Hebrew scholarship has demonstrated that the present "Hebrew portions of Daniel (i.e. chs. 1-2: 4a; 8-12) are, with the exception of the obvious interpolation 9:4-20, translated from Aramaic originals ..." (Texts and Studies of the Jewish Theological Seminary of America, Vol. XIV, p. 41) Dr. H. Louis Ginsberg, who authored Volume XIV of these studies, indicates that the original Aramaic text read for Daniel 8:14 - "shall be cleansed." Thus in three languages - the language in which the book of Daniel was originally written, and its translation into the Greek and Latin - the word in Daniel 8:14 is the future passive - "shall be cleansed." William Miller was correct in staying by the KJV for Daniel 8:14. Interesting also, the New KJV retains the translation of Daniel 8:14 - "then the sanctuary shall be cleansed."

"Decreed" or "Cut off "? -- Ankerberg's fourth charge against William Miller reads - "In ... - Daniel 9:24 - he assumed that the seventy-sevens, or 490 years, were decreed, the word 'decreed'
could be translated 'cut off ' from. He was wrong. The Hebrew literally means decreed or determined." (1-3) The linguistic justification of Miller's definition of the Hebrew word - ghah-thach - to be "cut off " is so ably defended by Uriah Smith in his 1897 edition

p 4 -- of Thoughts on the Prophecies of Daniel that we quote in full with Smith's analysis as to why men like Ankerberg consider the proper definition of the Hebrew word to be wrong. Smith wrote:      "Proof may be called for that the word rendered determined signifies to be cut off. An abundance can be given. The Hebrew word thus translated is ... nehhtak. This word Gesenius, in his Hebrew Lexicon, defines as follows: 'Properly, to cut off; tropically [figuratively], to divide; and so to determine, to decree.' In the Chaldeo-Rabbinic Dictionary of Stockius, the word nehhtak is thus defined: ' Scidit, abscidit, conscidit, inscidit, eikscidit - to cut, to cut away, to cut in pieces, to cut or engrave, to cut off.' Mercerus in his Thesaurus, furnishes a specimen of Rabbincal usage in the phrase, khati-kah shel basar, as 'a piece of flesh,' or, 'a cut of flesh.' He translates the word, as it occurs in Dan. 9:24, by 'praecisa est,' is cut off. In the literal version of Arias Montanus it is translated 'decisa est,' is cut off; in the marginal reading, which is grammatically correct, it is rendered by the plural, 'decisae sunt,' are cut off. In the Latin version of Junius and Tremellius, nehhtak (the passive of hhathak) is rendered 'decisae sunt,' are cut off. Again in Theodotion's Greek version of Daniel (which is the version used in the Vatican copy of the Septuagint, as being the most faithful), it is rendered by .... (sunetmethesan) , were cut off; and and in the Venetian copy by ... (tetmentai) , have been cut. The idea of cutting off is preserved in the. Vulgate, where the phrase is 'abbreviatae sunt,' are shortened.
"Thus the Chaldaic and Rabinnical authority, and the earliest versions, the Septuagint and Vulgate, give the single significance of cutting off, to this verb.
" Hengstenberg, who enters into a critical examination of the original text, says: ' But the very use of the word, which does not elsewhere occur, while others much more frequently used were at hand if Daniel had wished to express the idea of determination, and of which he has elsewhere, and even in this portion availed himself, seems to argue that the word stands from regard to its original meaning, and represents the seventy weeks in contrast with a determination of time (en platei) as a period cut off from subsequent duration, and accurately limited.'' - Christology of the Old Testament, Vol. II, p. 301, Washington, 1839.
"Why, then, it may be asked did our translators render the word determined, when it so obviously means cut off? The answer is, they doubtless overlooked the connection between the eighth and ninth chapters, and considering it improper to render it cut off, when nothing was given from which the seventy weeks could be cut off, they gave the word its tropcal instead of its literal meaning. But, as we have seen, the construction, the context, and the connection require the literal meaning, and render any other inadmissible."

Of interest on this point, just prior to Ankerberg's allegation that William Miller was wrong in five assumptions he had made in regard to Daniel 8 & 9, Dr. Desmond Ford has remarked - "The Adventists have said the word determined means 'cut off from.' So 490 years would be cut off from 2,300 and both should begin with the date of Daniel 9:25 - a decree to restore Jerusalem in 457 BC." After Ankerberg listed this as one of Miller's false assumptions, Ford never challenged this conclusion. However, in 1964, Dr. Desmond Ford, authored a book in Australia entitled, Unlocking God's Treasury. In this publication, he wrote -       "The word used for 'determined' in Daniel 9:24 'Seventy weeks are determined' literally means 'cut off ' and refers to the fact that these 490 years constitute the first section of the 2,300 years, and are cut off as a probationary period for the people of God in Old Testament times." (pp. 56-57)

If Dr. Ford had serious questions about the Sanctuary Doctrine prior to his baptism into the Seventh-day Adventist Church as he so freely stated before the AAF on the PUC campus, and now is in open opposition to this basic truth, what were his objectives in writing as he did in 1964? It is not alone in the matter of the meaning of the word in Daniel 9:24, but the book from his pen quoted above reflects historic Adventist teaching in

p 5 -- regard to the Investigative Judgment from pp. 51-58 - a teaching he now labels as false. So that the reader might assess what he wrote, we shall cite another sample of his then position:      The question is asked - "Why is it that the judgment must take place before the second coming?" To this question, Ford wrote - "Before the advent ... some must be 'accounted worthy to obtain that world, and the resurrection of the dead.' Luke 20:35. The righteous are thus declared innocent before they are released from the prison house of the grave." Then he quotes with approval, J. A. Seiss - "Resurrections and translations are products of judgment previously passed upon the dead as dead and the quick [living] as quick." (p. 54) Perhaps Ankerberg on his telecast should have asked Ford about the reasons for his vacillating theology.

A Further Question Answered -- Some ask the question as to why eleven years lapsed between the time the vision was given "in the third year of the reign of king Belshazzar" (8: 1) and when Gabriel returned to complete the explanation to Daniel "in the first, year of Darius ... of the seed of the Medes"'? (9: 1) The answer is rather simple. By the lapse of this amount of time, it forever settles the question whether the 2300 days should be considered as literal time or prophetic time. When Daniel was given the vision, he was not told when the time indicated was to be begin. If he had considered the 2300 evenings and mornings as 1150 full days as Ankerberg suggests erroneously the meaning to be, this would have meant a total of three years and two months. Nothing happened in this period of time after Daniel had the vision which altered the desolations of Jerusalem. If Daniel considered the meaning to be 2300 days, this would have meant six years and five months, still nothing occurred. In another four years, there came a change in kingdoms. The "ram" power which Daniel had been told was a representation of "the kings of Media and Persia" was now a reality. Still the 2300 days had no fulfillment. Daniel turned to the "books" of Jeremiah and found that the seventy years of prophesied captivity were almost completed. He prayed with the result that Heaven responded by sending Gabriel back to complete the commission assigned to him. Indeed, as Gabriel had first indicated, the vision was to reach to "the time of the end." (8:17) The 2300 days were to span the centuries and find their culminating date in 1844. "Then shall the sanctuary be cleansed."

William Miller did his "home work" well. He faltered on only one assumption of the five charged by Ankerberg. Three of the disappointed saints - Edson, Hahn, and Crosier (because of the erroneous assumption) - corrected Miller's faulty perception and gave meaning and significance to the relationship between the pattern sanctuary of Sinai, and the reality in the Heavens above. The historic Adventist faith still stands unmoved by challenges hurled against it by its adversaries.

[For further confirmation, secure the tapes - "The Certainty of our Faith" and "1844 Re-Examined" with guide sheets. order form]

"Truth is violated by falsehood,
but it is outraged by silence."

Henri Frederic Amiel

p 6 -- THE CHURCH MAKES A SETTLEMENT WITH WALTER REA -- At the time Elder Walter Rea was dismissed from the ministry of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, he believed that his "firing" involved more than merely his position on Ellen G. White, and had something to do with the Davenport scandal. Elder Rea through legal counsel asked for redress. The Church through their lawyers have paid an unspecified sum of money which does not involve in any way Rea's sustentation when he becomes eligible, nor does the settlement restrict in any way his freedom to speak and write on the Ellen G. White issue, or the Davenport scandal. Walter Rea agreed to keep his presentations issue orientated, and not to mention by name personalities involved in his termination.

WORTH THINKING ABOUT -- A good friend of mine in California sent me a book - Romans - Atonement and Justification. The author is D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones, a Welshman, who served his fellowmen, consecutively, as a physician and as a preacher. His ministerial service included a shared ministry with G. Campbell Morgan at Westminister Chapel in London. From this book, I wish to share some comments which can be related to the counsel in the "Adult Teaching Aids" for this Quarter's SS Lessons. Lloyd-Jones does not concur with W. G. Johnsson of the Adventist Review, who authored the Teaching Aids. Lloyd-Jones was against such an approach as unScriptural and the basis of ecumenicity. He writes:      "My final remark ... is to point out that the great Apostle never confines himself to mere positive statements but often indulges, because he feels that he must do so, in arguments, in polemics. I make this point because I think there is a great deal of very loose and very false and flabby thinking on the whole question of polemics and of argumentation at the present time. The attitude of many seems to be, ' We do not want these arguments. Give us the simple message, the simple Gospel. Give it to us positively, and do not bother about other views.' It is important that we should realize that if we speak like that we are denying the Scriptures. The Scriptures are full of argumentation, full of polemics. And the Apostle sees the necessity for it here. Having just reasoned up to that tremendous climax on the doctrine of the Atonement, he suddenly asks, ' Where is boasting then?' ' Is he the God of the Jews only, or is he the God of the Gentiles also?' ' Do we then make void the law?' In doing so he is arguing, he is disputing; this is sheer polemics.
"Disapproval of polemics in the Christian Church is a very serious matter. But is the attitude of the age in which we live. The prevailing idea today in many circles in the Church is not to bother about these things. As long as we are all Christians, anyhow, somehow, all is well. Don't argue about doctrine, let us all be Christians together and talk about the love of God. That is really the basis' of ecumenicity. Unfortunately that same attitude is creeping into evangelical circles also and many are saying that we must not be too precise about these things. But if you begin to object to clear statements about the doctrine of the Atonement you are beginning to argue. It is important that we should be clear about the doctrine of the Atonement. 'Ah but, you are beginning to argue, that is upsetting, that is going to divide people.'
"What I am trying to show is that if you hold that view you are criticizing the Apostle Paul, you are saying that he was wrong, and at the same time you are criticizing the Scriptures. The Scriptures argue and debate and dispute; they are full of polemics. You cannot read this Epistle to the Romans, or the Epistle to the Galatians, or indeed any one of these epistles, without seeing that very clearly. Let us be clear about what we mean. No man should like argument for the sake of argument. We should always regret the necessity; but though we regret it and bemoan it, when we feel that a vital matter is at stake we must engage in argument. We must ' earnestly contend for the truth,' and we are called upon to do that by the New Testament. (pp. 113-114) --- (1983 Feb) ---End---- TOP

1983 Mar -- XVI - 3(83) -- NO SIGNIFICANCE? -- 1974 Bible Conference Negates - Alert Voiced at 1952 Bible Conference -- At the 1974 Bible Conference, held in three different locations so as to accommodate a greater number of the ministry in the North American Division, Dr. Herbert E. Douglass, speaking on "Adventist Eschatology" stated - "Adventist do not see theological importance in the establishment of the Jewish state in 1948 or the annexation of Old Jerusalem in 1967." ("The Unique Contribution of Adventist Eschatology, p. 6) Five years later in a book published by the Pacific Press. Douglass reiterated this theme indicating that Seventh-day Adventists "do not see prophetic importance in the establishment of the Jewish state in 1948, or the annexation of Old Jerusalem in 1967." (The End, p. 48) In so doing Dr. Douglass sought to negate the alert given to the ministry of the Adventist Church at the 1952 Bible Conference.

In 1952, midway in the administration of Elder W. H. Branson as President of the General Conference a Bible Conference was scheduled from September 1 thru the 13th in the Sligo Park Church. Leaders and representatives of all the World Divisions, save one, and delegates from all the Union Conferences and institutions of the North American Division were present. In addressing the opening session of this Bible Conference, Elder Branson declared that the conference was being called "for the particular purpose of reaffirming those great and fundamental truths that have most certainly been believed among us throughout our history." (Our Firm Foundation, Vol. I, p.45) He also indicated that the ministry of the Church were "prophetic preachers - not prophets," and that our safety in preaching prophecy was to preach those prophecies which were already fulfilled and avoid prophetic speculation. Then he noted - "As prophecy fulfills more and more, and we receive an understanding of exactly how history has fulfilled the prophecy, then we can add that fulfilled prophecy to our preaching." (Ibid., p. 57)

Selected to speak on "The Imminence of Christ's Second Coming" was Elder Arthur S. Maxwell, Editor of the Signs of the Times. In one section of his presentation, he discussed, "Areas of Unfulfilled Prophecy." One area concerned developments in Palestine. In focusing the attention of the delegates on this area of unfulfilled prophecy, he noted the establishment of the Jewish State, that had occurred a few years prior, in 1948. He said:      "The recent dramatic restoration of the nation of Israel has focused the attention of mankind once more upon Palestine. Many Christians have mistakenly permitted themselves to believe that the return of thousands of unconverted Jews to their land is in fulfillment of the promises to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, not realizing that, since the death of the Son

p 2 -- of God on Calvary, there is no salvation, nor any eternal homeland, except for those who believe in Him and accept His sacrifice.
"However, there is one prophecy concerning Palestine that we should all be watching with special care. Said Jesus, 'Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled.' Luke 21:24.
"For nineteen centuries Jerusalem has been trodden down of the Gentiles. Despite the amazing prowess of the Israeli troops, the ancient city of Jerusalem is still in Arab hands. A Mohammedan mosque still stands upon the site of Solomon's Temple. Victorious as were the forces of Israel in every other part of Palestine, they failed to take the most dazzling objective of all. Mysteriously they were held back from achieving this most cherished goal, this culminating triumph, as by an unseen hand.
"What could be the reason? Only that the times; of the Gentiles are not yet fulfilled.
"Centuries ago Israel was not permitted to enter Palestine for a certain time because ' the iniquity of the Amorites' was not yet full.' (Gen. 15:16) : that is, not until the probationary time allotted to the Amorites had run out.
"It may well be that the same principle applies today, on a wider scale. If so, then Jerusalem is to remain trodden down by Gentiles till the probationary time of all Gentiles has run out. If this be correct, how much hinges upon the fate of this ancient city and the power that occupies it." (Ibid., Vol. II, pp. 270-231)

There are voices in Adventism who heeded the alert sounded by Maxwell, and have seen "prophetic importance" in the annexation of Old Jerusalem in 1967. Among these are Dr. J. R. Zurcher, now Secretary of the Euro-Africa Division. He wrote a book which was used as a special helps for the Sabbath School Lessons during the 2nd Quarter of 1980, entitled, Christ of the Revelation. In it he stated:      "We shall not linger over the numerous signs given by Jesus in this discourse (Matt. 24, Mark 13, & Luke 21) One only will occupy our attention, the one that especially deals with time Even in our days it constitutes a critical point in the political world: Jerusalem. In fact, Jerusalem is both the beginning and the culmination of Jesus' prophecy. For Him, as for Daniel the prophet, the history of nations, as that of the people of
Israel, is written in the tragic history of Jerusalem. The latter is the sign by which the fate of the former is determined. So having predicted the destruction of Jerusalem and the dispersion of the Jews ' into all nations,' Jesus declared, 'Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled' (Luke 21:24)
"Few today would deny the precision of this prophecy. The destruction of Jerusalem by the Roman armies in AD 70 is a historical fact commemorated on the triumphal arch of Titus in Rome. As for Jerusalem, nineteen centuries of history should provide adequate proof that it has been 'trodden down of the Gentiles' - first by the Romans, then by the Arabs, next by different Christian nations during the Crusades, fourth by the Turks up to the end of the first world war, then by the British, and finally by the Jordanians until the Six-Day War in June, 1967.
"This prophecy of Jesus was a sign for the Christians of the Apostolic Church, who lived at the beginning of the times of the Gentiles, and it remains a sign for us who live at the end of the times of the Gentiles. Again, we must know how to discern its meaning.
"It is hot a matter of our seeing in the return the Jews to Palestine and in the Israeli conquest of Jerusalem a sign of the approaching conversion of the Jews, as so many Christians think. Nothing in Jesus' prophecy allows such an interpretation. However, if we cannot see that Jerusalem is an exceptional sign of the times, then might we not be placing ourselves in the same position as the religious leaders who knew how to 'discern the face of the sky' but could not discern the obvious 'signs of the times'?
"In order for us to understand Jesus' statement, three questions need answering. First, what exactly does the expression ' the times of the Gentiles' mean? Then

p 3 -- what should be understood by the fulfillment of the times of the Gentiles? Finally, what connection is there between the retaking of Jerusalem by the Jews and the fulfillment of the times of the Gentiles?
"As I understand the Biblical language, the times of the Gentiles is the period set aside by God for the evangelizing of the heathen nations. It is not the time needed for them to be converted to Christianity, as some think, but for them to hear the gospel. It is in this sense that Jesus said: ' This gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.' (Matt. 24:14)
"I believe that the times of the Gentiles an in AD 34, when the prophetic seventy weeks that God set aside for the people of Israel ended. The baptism of the first 'heathens' - the Ethiopian eunuch and the centurion Cornelius - as well as the conversion of Paul as the apostle to the Gentiles mark the beginning of these new times when the gospel would be preached to the nations. And if I understand the prediction of Jesus properly, this time will be 'fulfilled' when Jerusalem will cease to ' be trodden down of the Gentiles.' The fact that since 1967 Gentiles longer have occupied Jerusalem means, therefore, that we are now living at the end of ' the times of the Gentiles.'
"Jerusalem here constitutes the last sign of the times by which the Lord shows us that the history of this world is coming to its climax and that the restoration of all things is at hand." (pp. 71-72)

We even find in the evangelistic material of the Church a recognition of the fact that this prophecy is not only saying something, but also that it has been fulfilled in our day. In Lesson 5 of the
20th Century Bible Course, we find these questions and answers:
2.  What sign did Jesus give that would indicate when the destruction of the city was at hand? Luke 21:20 --
The city of Jerusalem was surrounded by the Roman armies in AD 66. After a period of time the army withdrew and the Christians, recognizing the sign given by Christ. (Matt. 24:15-20) fled the city and did not return. In AD 69 the Romans ret
urned, and destroyed the city in AD 70. Nearly a million people died or were sold into slavery at that time, but not a single Christian died. They watched for the sign Christ had given and obeyed His instructions. The temple was burned to the ground as Christ had foretold (even though the soldiers had orders not to destroy it). Christ foresaw the future and outlined it to His followers so that they could be saved.

3.   How long did Christ say that Jerusalem would be trodden down? (verse 24) --
Old Jerusalem and the temple site has been occupied largely by the Gentile nations until 1967 when the Jews took possession of it in a '"lightning victory." This portion of Christ's prophecy was fulfilled in our day!

In the light,of all of this recognition in the publications issued from the presses of the Church, it is no longer necessary to submit evidence of the fulfillment of this prophecy though much could be given. There remains only one question with which we must come to grips, that is, what does this prophecy mean in application? Zurcher has well suggested - and note again one of the paragraphs from his book -    "As I understand the Biblical language, the times of the Gentiles is the period set aside by God for the evangelizing of the heathen nations."    Keeping in mind that the Greek word for "nations" and "Gentiles" is the same - ethne - what Zurcher' is saying is simply that when the times of the Gentiles was fulfilled, the period of evangelization is ended for the nations of earth. The implications of this fulfilled prophecy we are not willing to accept and thus we seek to nullify what Jesus said by stating Seventh-day Adventists see no importance in the event which fulfilled it. It is true from our viewpoint on earth, we cannot see how this can be - the evangelization of the nations ended - but fulfilled prophecy does reveal heaven's viewpoint. By faith we accept it and act there upon. Righteousness - right doing - by faith will accept what God is saying in fulfilled prophecy whether our natural perceptions tell us it is so.

What then is this prophecy telling us? To put it simply, the commission given

p 4 -- to the Church - to give the Gospel as a witness to all nations - has been withdrawn. In permitting the prophecy of Jesus to be fulfilled, Heaven has so revealed its viewpoint. Why? Either we have finished our work gloriously as did Jesus (See John 17:4); or else we have been set aside. We know the first alternative is not correct, and we are not willing to admit the latter. What we need to do is to get our heads out of the sand and face reality, instead of continuing in Laodicean blindness.

Zurcher quoted Matthew 24:14 in illustrating what he meant when he said that the "times of the Gentiles" was the period set aside by God "for them to hear the gospel." Then shall the end come. We have understood this to mean, the close of all human probation, and thus there it much perplexity in accepting a fulfilled prophecy of Jesus, and yet see time continuing on. Interestingly, we have been given in the Writings knowledge of what will happen as soon as the truth which had been committed to our trust had been proclaimed as a "witness" to all nations. We would disgrace ourselves in spiritual harlotry. The prophecy reads thus       "After the truth has been proclaimed as a witness to all nations, every conceivable power of evil will be set in operation, and minds will be confused by many voices crying, 'Lo, here is Christ, Lo he is there. This is the truth, I have the message from God, he has sent me with great light.'
"Then there will be a removing of the landmarks, and an attempt to tear down the pillars of our faith." (R&H, Dec. 13, 1892)

If this revelation means anything, it is telling us that once the truth has been proclaimed as a witness to all nations, then the battle scene shifts to the Church itself with internal confusion and chaos. No one who is in the least bit knowledgeable of events within the Church since 1967 can deny this has been and is being fulfilled. Like the Jews of old to whom Jesus declared - "This day is this Scripture fulfilled in your ears" - the hierarchy of the Church with their puppets would like to take anyone who proclaims the fulfilled prophecy of Jesus out and push them over the edge of the cliff. Re-read the experience in Luke 4:16-30. What Jesus was telling those church-goers of Nazareth was that being the supposed favored people of God was conditional upon their acceptance of the Revealed Truth of heaven. This they did not, and three years later, Jesus, that Truth, declared to them - "Behold, your house is left unto you desolate." (Matt. 23:38) It was no longer His house.

We, likewise, have been warned decades ago that if we were not true to the trust given to us, on us would be pronounced the -sentence "Found Wanting" (8T: 247), and our house would be left desolate. (See 5T:210) Further we are told in unmistakable language, that should we be involved in unfaithfulness, the divine Instructor would view the once "faithful city" as "an harlot." (8T:250)

Now let us face the facts squarely. A once faithful city who has become a harlot can no more go through to the kingdom than the harlot of Revelation 17. And this isn't saying the two are identical. The "Jewish church became a harlot" but this did not make the Jewish church, Babylon. (See GC, p. 382) Unless we can get our thinking straight, we will willingly reject a message given by Heaven through fulfilled prophecy, and in so doing be led into a fatal security that the Church is going through. Much more dangerous is the influence of men who while professing to uphold historic Adventism encourage the laity in such a deception. Compounding the situation is the fact that this is the last time.

The prophecy of the Times of the Gentiles is the last prophecy Jesus gave in the series of future events that night on the Mount of Olives. As a summary statement to this outline of future history, Jesus declared:       "And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh. And he spake unto them a parable: Behold the fig tree, and all the trees; when they now shoot forth, ye see and know of your own selves that summer is now nigh at hand. So likewise ye, when ye see these things come to pass, know ye

p 5 -- that the Kingdom of God is nigh at hand. Verily, I say unto you, This generation shall not pass away, till all be fulfilled. Heaven and earth shall pass away: but my words shall not pass away." (Luke 21:28-33)

OF HEAVEN WITH POWER AND GREAT GLORY. (Counsels to Writers, pp. 23-24)

WHAT CAN I DO? -- In the light of the crisis and chaos within the Church, what can one who sees what is taking place do to alert his fellow church members? Counsel has been given. It reads:      "Those who walk in the light will see signs of the approaching peril; but they are not to sit in quiet, unconcerned expectancy of the ruin, comforting themselves belief that God will shelter his people in the day of visitation. Far from it. They should realize that it is their duty to labor diligently to save others, looking with strong faith to God for help." (5T:209:2)

You will observe that the counsel is to those "who walk in the light." This group is also spoken of as "a little company who are standing in the light" and whose prayers "arise in behalf of the church, because its members are doing after the manner of the world." (Ibid., Pp. 209-210) Moreover, these "faithful few" hold forth "the words of life" in reproof and entreaty. Such earnestness is sure to be interpreted as criticism and fault finding. But "some" respond, repent and humble their hearts before God. "But the glory of the Lord had departed from Israel; although many still continue the forms of religion, His power and presence were lacking." (Ibid, p. 210)

In order that this important message can be given to your fellow Church members, the Adventist Laymen's Foundation has devised a plan in which we both share mutually. The tract - The Seal of God - a facsimile reproduction of Testimonies for the Church, Vol. 5, 207-216 with Notes, has been reprinted and the Notes revised in a new format so as to fit a #10 envelope.

p 6 -- AMPLIFICATION -- In the January Thought Paper (XVI-1) in the article - "Truth Under Attack" - I listed a number of persons who profess to uphold "historic" Adventism, but who in their allegiance to the hierarchy give consent to the Statement of Beliefs voted at the Dallas General Conference Session. These men either did not know of the Ankerberg Show, or knowing, made no attempt to speak-up for the true faith.

One of these individuals, I was advised took exception to the statement - "They would have the laity believe that the only 'bad guys' are Ford and Rea." It appears on the local level, this person has spoken out in regard to neo-Adventist teachings held by local Conference officials. However, we in the East have seen no such documentation. All we have available are books which have been published under his name and circulated with the blessing of the hierarchy.

The book - Omega - while naming neither Ford nor Rea is but a thinly veiled attack upon them. That which these men have voiced is represented as a harbinger of the coming omega. The omega is pictured as something in the future. Walton wrote:      "The omega: a mysterious danger that waits for the church at the end of time." (p. 86)   Thus he with others are not willing to face the facts that Ford is merely the fruitage of the compromise made at the 1955-56 SDA-Evangelical Conferences. The Church entered the Omega Apostasy at that time.

In the book - Omega - a comparison is made between the history of the Church during the Alpha apostasy, with other deviate concepts mixed in for good measure whether related or not - and the present crisis in the Church because of the attack on the sanctuary teaching [by Ford] and on the Spirit of Prophecy [by Rea]. As far as I have been able to read - and I have read the book carefully - there is not a single reference to the Barnhouse-Martin dialogue which led to the book, Questions on Doctrine and its follow up, Movement of Destiny a book which in its second printing still carries the nihil obstat of Neal C. Wilson.

In the light of the counsel which has been given in regard to the Alpha Apostasy, one can understand the reluctance of any of the men named in the January Thought Paper to place the Omega where it ought to be placed. Ellen G. White told the laity at the time of the Alpha:      
"'Come,' I call, 'come ye out and be ye separate from him [Kellogg] and his associates whom he has leavened.' I am now giving the message God has given me, and

p 7 -- to give to all who claim to believe the truth: 'Come out from among them, and be ye separate,' or else their sin in justifying wrongs and framing deceits will continue to ruin souls. We cannot afford to be on the wrong side." (Special Testimonies, Series b, #7, p. 64)

This being true in the time of the Alpha, how much more so in the present time of the Omega. But if men can place the omega as future, then they need not come to grips with the responsibility which would be theirs if they should call the omega for just what it is - the compromise of the hierarchy in the SDA-Evangelical Conferences. If these men did so, they could not be telling their captive audiences that things are going to work out alright, therefore, continue to sit comfortably in your pews. This is not what the servant of the Lord advised when confronted with the Alpha of apostasy! Do these men really believe the Spirit of Prophecy, or are they like Rea - whom they condemn - really making of none effect the testimonies of the Spirit?

NEW POLICY FOR THE ADVENTIST REVIEW -- In the January 20, 1983 issue of the Adventist Review, the new Editor, through a planned interview for himself by an Assistant Editor, and in an editorial sets forth the new policy which the paper will assume as "the voice of the church." Editorially, Dr Wm. G. Johnsson stated -      "The ADVENTIST REVIEW holds that the church is best served by keeping its members abreast with developments. Even when the news is bad, it is better that members hear it through the REVIEW than from rumor or some other source." (p.13)      This aspect of the new policy was emphasized. It was listed as "a major objective." (Ibid.) It was noted as a "high priority" by the Editor. (p. 8)

While the question of "managed news releases" will ever lurk in the thinking of an informed reader, it is a breath of "fresh air" to be promised that the staff of the Review will be printing some realistic news. However, there is an interesting change which has taken place in the relationship of the Review with the General Conference. "At the General Conference's Spring Meeting, it was voted that the General Conference would assume responsibility for the editorial functions of the Adventist Review." (Ibid.) Prior to this the staff of the Review gave an account to the Publishing Board of the R&H, now they are answerable to an "Editorial Board" chaired by Neal C. Wilson. While Dr. Johnsson is confident that it will not happen, he suggested in his interview that under the new arrangement "the potential for the Review's becoming an Adventist Pravda, as it were, is greater." Let this be remembered.

Since such an open policy is in the making, the cause could best be served if the Editor would be open with his readers. It would be well if he would reconcile his position on the book of Hebrews as given in his dissertation for his doctorate at Vanderbilt University, and the historic teaching of the Church. This dissertation takes a position as contrary to the truth which fundamental Adventists hold as anything Ford has ever written. Yet Dr Ford is dismissed - and he should have been long before he was - but Dr. Johnsson is exalted to a place where he becomes a "mouth piece" for the hierarchy.

There is another fearful aspect to the new policy. The Editor stated -    "The second feature in this issue is a new column Perspective. From time to time Adventists wonder what sort of people are guiding the church, what is their vision of the church, what motivates them. Perspective will attempt to give the answers. (p. 13)      Wilson was featured first and is scheduled for the second. This strikes directly at the message of righteousness by faith as set forth in 1888, and is Satanic in origin. Ellen G. White wrote:      "Now it has been Satan's determined purpose to eclipse the view of Jesus, and lead men to look to man, and trust to man, and be educated to expect help from man. For years the church has been looking to man, and expecting much from man, but not looking to Jesus, in whom our hopes of eternal life are centered. Therefore God gave to His servants a testimony that presented the truth as it is in Jesus, which is the third angel's message, in clear, distinct lines." (TM, p. 93) ---(1983 Mar) ---End----