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Showing content with the highest reputation since 02/17/2018 in all areas

  1. 7 points
    Gregory Matthews

    Must be Baptized in the Name of Yahshua the Christ to Be saved.

    1) I wonder what you think about the thief who died on the cross along with Christ and whether or not that thief was saved. 2) To say that now we know the truth, comes across as arrogant.
  2. 6 points
    rudywoofs (Pam)

    Downsides of Theological Discussions

    I thought EGW herself referred to her writings as the "lesser light".... not the "guiding light"
  3. 6 points
    Gregory Matthews

    Cental California Announcement

    For those of you who are interested, the following is a photo of myself, my sister and my wife.
  4. 6 points
    Kevin H

    Are 'Celebration SDA Churches', new path to God, or away from truth?

    I've been wanting to make some comments here but have not had the time that I thought would be fair, so I will try a "Standing on one leg" answer. Then there is another direction on this which I feel is more urgent to address and I will do that below. Anyway, so called "celebration" churches are not one group. The post have lumped them all together. I've attended a few including in Milwaukee Oregon and Colton California. They were as different as day and night. And I have read balanced articles about others from people who I respect. What the "Celebration" churches have in common is that they do not follow the traditional 1700/1800 Methodist model of worship, but are willing to try other forms. Milwaukee had a style that was very culturally Christian. I don't see it attracting people who were not into a very sticky sweet Jesusiee type of religion. Having lived in Israel and had a couple of former girlfriends who were Israeli and one who was a Christian Arab from Bethlehem, if I did marry any of them (or had them come to visit) I would not have taken them to that church. But yet there are Christians who it appeals to. The big problem I saw with that church was that they were so close to "Hope International" in Washington that the "Hope International" people would accuse that church of this that and the other thing. For example a Baptist church in the area who they once rented from was on a Saturday holding a car wash. It was to raise money for a boy in Portland who had cancer. By the way the boy was a Seventh-day Adventist. Even thought it was not the Seventh-day Adventist church having that carwash, the people from Hope International accused them of sponsoring it. This persecution is what destroyed that church. Now the Colton church was not nearly as sticky sweet Jesusiee. They had a service which was not the traditional Methodist service but they worked on getting people into small groups. Many of these small groups were VERY conservative and VERY traditional. They were reaching out to people who had left the church, or were on the verge of leaving, giving them something to hold on to and discipline them into the small groups which as I said were steps to becoming more conservative and traditional Adventists. But because they had the title of being a "Celebration" church once again it was attacked by those who love to give an empty criticism. So with other "Celebration" churches. Some are very conservative, others more moderate, and yes others who are liberal. Some I'd strongly disagree with, others I can embrace, some I'd not get too excited about but can live with. The only thing that they have in common is that they are open to follow other methods than the traditional Methodist service.
  5. 6 points
    Bill Cork

    Immigration & SDA Membership

    There's so much fear of immigrants, from both white conservatives and white liberals. Both are afraid that backward people from darker places will impede our progress and our lifestyle and will mess with our politics. I live in the heart of the most diverse part of the most diverse city in the United States. There is a mosque in Spanish nearby, and others that are Indonesian, Arab, or Pakistani. There are Buddhist temples and a Sikh gurdwara. There are Korean Presbyterians and Nigerian Anglicans, and the closest Seventh-day Adventist church has Chinese, Vietnamese, Nigerian, Ghanaian, Kenyan, South African, Colombian, and Jamaican members (and many more). Yes, the Adventist church is growing through immigration--as is every other faith group. The city is diverse and dynamic and growing. In 2016, it grew by 125,000 people (twice as many people coming to this one city each year as there are members in the the entire Texas Conference). This is the norm that my kids grew up with, attending schools where there friends were of many nations, kindreds, tongues, and peoples. Their friends were Muslim, Hindu, Catholic, Protestant, and Buddhist. The Adventist church they attended for most of their youth looked like the community; diverse members of one church. Yes, there were interesting conversations that sometimes became disputes because everyone, whether from Lagos or Loma Linda, wanted to find a church like they knew back home. Because when in a new place, people find comfort in what is familiar. They find meaning in what stays the same in the midst of change. They want to be able to teach their kids the traditions handed down to them. All immigrants deal with the same things, as was demonstrated in Helen Rose Ebaugh's 2001 book, "Religion and the New Immigrants," which profiled a number of worshiping communities in southwest Houston of different faiths and different ethnicities, looking at what was unique, and then comparing issues across religious lines. I have recommended it to every Adventist pastor and administrator asking about the city, but I don't know the a single one has taken me up on it. Immigrants want to hold on to things that have meaning for them, while long time residents want them to conform to "us" rapidly. Church growth advocates expect application of Fuller principles should work the same in suburban Anglo churches, urban Hispanic churches, and in Vietnamese churches. They don't. Youth surveys present a homogenous view of "X-ers" and "Millennials," without regard to the very different perspectives of urban v suburban, or the differences in mindset and value and psychology between different cultures. The solution only comes in crossing boundaries, in becoming comfortable in this chaos, in getting to know others, in learning how other people think, and process, and make decisions. It means being patient, and listening. And realizing that this is the main task. Because this change, this influx, is the constant. And if we are so focused on getting another 3000 baptisms a year in the state, we won't even be able to comprehend that 400,000 people moved into the state in the same time frame. We're obsessed with adding a few grains of rice to our bowl with a pair of chopsticks while balancing on our head on the back of a turtle -- and are oblivious to the tsunami. Those who want to build walls are living in fear. I prefer to live in hope, and in the excitement of the possibilities that abound in this amazingly rich place.
  6. 5 points
    JoeMo

    Must be Baptized in the Name of Yahshua the Christ to Be saved.

    Dear Disciple, It must be terrible to live in fear of condemnation! I say this with all sympathy for your position - your revelation is not my revelation. I do not feel condemned whatsoever - only loved. Does God "convict me of sin? Yes; but He never condemns me. I feel so sorry for people who feel condemned by God rather than cherished by Him. Do you love Yahweh and His Son Yahshua? Do you believe Yahshua is who He says He is and has done what He said He has done? Then you are His son! I view the concern over being baptized the right way the same way Paul viewed circumcision Romans 2:28: "A person is not a Jew who is one only outwardly, nor is circumcision merely outward and physical. 29 No, a person is a Jew who is one inwardly; and circumcision is circumcision of the heart, by the Spirit, not by the written code.Such a person’s praise is not from other people, but from God." Think about this, brother. You appear to be a true believer, fervent for your God and His values. Don't get hung up on a single issue condition for salvation. God is looking at your heart. Many who are not baptized (or baptized in the name of Yehshua) will be in the Kingdom. Unless you abandon your trust in a loving God to save you, you will be in His Kingdom.
  7. 5 points
    🤢 I watched the interview, the above words are just more Pope/RCC baiting. An opinion statement not based on facts or accuracy.
  8. 5 points
    rudywoofs (Pam)

    Prayer

    I like the prayers Gregory posted. Public prayers that go on and on and on before the actual purpose of the prayer is even mentioned, drive me nuts. An example of that would be when someone is asked to bless the food before a meal, and that person drones on and on about the weather, about what they did (or will do) during the day, etc, etc, etc. I sit there and think to myself, "How long, Lord? .... "
  9. 5 points
    rudywoofs (Pam)

    very interested in feedback on our April cover story

    I showed the story to my Mom (a very astute 92-yr-old who's been a member of the church for over 70 years). Mom's reaction was different from mine. She was horrified to think that pastors or others in church leadership positions would behave in such a manner, and the fact that punishment was neither swift nor adequate. I'm thinking now that the story may be quite valuable in that it can open the eyes of long-time members who sometimes have placed church officials and pastors on invisible pedestals. Many people don't *want* to hear about (or read) anything negative pertaining to the church. But, imho, they really need to...
  10. 5 points
    CoAspen

    New Jerusalem Population

    There will be room for all that choose to be there! Really, very simple! God has no limits, only humans attempt to limit!!
  11. 4 points
    JoeMo

    How Important Is Correct Doctrine to Salvation?

    There are several of us on this forum who's opinions differ from that of the SDA Church and prevailing SDA tradition. Some recent examples are the inerrancy of EGW, and the Trinity. While I agree that there are certain doctrinal beliefs "necessary" for salvation (e.g., belief in the God of Israel, belief that Christ is the only hope for salvation, a certain degree of conformance to the Laws of God). But there are other doctrines or strong traditions that we argue over that (IMHO) we don't necessarily need to believe to be saved. Do we have to believe EGW was an inerrant prophet to be saved? Do all Christians have to keep the 7th-day sabbath to be saved? Do all Christians have to believe in the Trinity (Three Persons in One God) to be saved? Do we have to believe in the pre-existence of Jesus to be saved? Do we have to abstain from unclean foods to be saved? Do we have to abstain from all alcohol and nicotine to be saved? There are many other examples of things that people passionately defend that maybe don't need such passionate defense. It might be necessary for some and not for others. For example, my honoring of the Sabbath feels like a necessary part of my personal doctrine to be saved. But that doesn't lead me to believe that all Sunday-Keepers are condemned; or that the Sabbath will be THE end-time issue. I'm not starting this thread to defend or condemn any non-mainstream points of doctrine. It's just that I think certain non-salvational topics and/or the people who support them can feel marginalized when they go "Outside the Limits".
  12. 4 points
    Gregory Matthews

    Cental California Announcement

    This announcement is primarily for any of our members and visitors to this forum who may be living in the Central California area. As that is the area in which my sister and I grew up, some of you may know my sister Marcy Johnston (Marciel Matthews). Tomorrow, June 9, she is going to be baptized at the Parkwood SDA Church, 301 Claratina Ave, Modesto, California. She attended the local Adventist school for all 12 years and graduated in 1960. If you knew her, you may want to attend and greet her. Tomorrow will be a great day in her spiritual life and journey. NOTE: Due to the time sensitive nature of this post, I will probably remove it later on.
  13. 4 points
    The Wanderer

    Announcement & Question

    Thank you Gregory. She was too ill to enjoy a service the "regular" way so we got married in her bed...like John Lennon and Yoko. 😀 It was a blessing to all. The person doing the wedding even cried. To my wife and I this was much more than marriage. It was and is true love. I lover her more each day. And that is what The Lord has done. A statement made during the vows said "may the marriage YIELD whatever is put into it." And thats related to why we call it "true love." It is possible no matter whats going on. 😀
  14. 4 points
    Gregory Matthews

    The Investigative Judgment

    Rachel has raised a very important point. God does not need to investigate in order to figure out who is saved and eligible to spend eternity with God, and who is not saved. God knows. The so-called Investigative Judgment (IJ), is not focused on God in that sense. The plan of salvation, in its beginning was focused on the false charge that if God actually gave His creation freedom of choice. The Investigative Judgment is an examination of the record of the candidates that assures the created, intelligent, beings in the Universe that they have freely chosen to spend eternity with God and that if they are allowed to do so, sin has been so eliminated that they will never choose to sin. In it the Universe that needs to have this assurance. God does not. God knows. We who it is commonly stated are being judged, do not need to fear for our salvation. It is fixed and certain. With the end of the IJ, the Universe will also have that assurance.
  15. 4 points
    8thdaypriest

    Why Doesn't God Use Me?

    I've always regarded myself as "weak" and "blind" sometimes, and foolish often. Guess I'm a good candidate - for God's use that is. I once asked the LORD what element of my character He most wanted to change. Instantly - and I do mean INSTANTLY - the word "impatience" flooded my mind. So if you're at all like me, and you find your life slowed to a crawl, the LORD may be working on your character, so He can make good use of you - later. I remember - some 25 years ago - there was a mentally challenged woman who attended my church. Joe may remember her. She walked with a forward leaning flat-footed gait. She would loudly interrupt Sabbath School class, telling us to prepare for judgment (not the topic of the lesson), then telling the leader that he was disrespecting her. Well - he wasn't. He was very patient with her. I remember sitting there seething with impatience, (and my intellectual snobbery) wondering why he allowed this woman to LOUDLY interrupt our class. Why didn't he DEAL with her? I hope I've come some way "heavenward" from that.
  16. 4 points
    Tom Wetmore

    New Jerusalem Population

    Yes. That explains it even better! There is a connected logical progression of the basic root of 10 to enhance and amplify the symbolic meaning of multiples of 10. An OT example is the chant of the people praising David after battle in comparison to Saul - 10,000s vs 1000s. Not real numbers of those they like personally killed but vastly more was David’s success in battle.
  17. 4 points
    Gail

    very interested in feedback on our April cover story

    I thank God for noble men that value women instead of devaluing them.
  18. 4 points
    Gregory Matthews

    Why was Jesus baptized?

    Well, you probably did not laugh as hard as I did. I have corrected my typo.
  19. 4 points
    rudywoofs (Pam)

    Are 'Celebration SDA Churches', new path to God, or away from truth?

    yeah, I guess should just make certain that person should feel as embarrassed as possible and "not-as-good-as" the vegetarians in our midsts, because, you know, those who eat meat won't go to heaven... so... no one who is LGBTQ should be baptized because that could cost them eternal life? They should remain unbaptized? Or is it that no LGBTQ person will gain eternal life, no matter if they're baptized or not? (Sadly, that *does* seem to be what many believe.... ) NOTE: I understand the above illustrations by Photodude were just given as examples as requested.... and aren't really the topic for this thread....so I probably shouldn't have even commented. But I did. Alas, I emerge from one disaster to fall into a worse. ~ Pierre Corneille ...C'est la vie.
  20. 4 points
    rudywoofs (Pam)

    Are 'Celebration SDA Churches', new path to God, or away from truth?

    sorry, Wanderer, that my sense of humor is lost on you... I'll try to keep my amusement to myself, so as not to cause anyone the vapors..
  21. 4 points
    debbym

    What makes God real to you?

    the exercise of faith renews the realness of God to me also. if i let faith lay with being exercised the reality o God can grow dim. i believe that is why there are warnings about neglecting our salvation. not so good to neglect to pray and exercise faith.
  22. 4 points
    debbym

    What makes God real to you?

    i think of the blind men all touching a different part of the elephant describing the elephant. i think i am all of the blind men, touching a different aspect or quality of God at different times in my life or at different places of need. My God provides for all of my needs, and my needs vary through the day, and from the cradle to the grave. Over the development of my life my needs are changing. What i would draw from God is shifting, and to put all those provisions together with all those needs, yes they draw a picture of me, in a relationship to a providing God. I am not seeing one without the other. Yes we see God through the lens of our being which he created with the potential of knowing him. so many times i wept and my tears were subdued, but not immediately. i had a season of tears flowing. or my tummy was hungry, and i hungered, but food came. or i hungered for God, then as much as i could bear the Spirit came, or i hungered for wisdom, drops of wisdom came, now i am longing for more, more of Christ in my relationships... like Elijah sending his servant to search the sky on Mt. Carmel, and when the servant finally came back and said he saw a small cloud Elijah said run, the rain is coming. I believe the rain is coming. and when i am dying and need more time, and need more air and need relief from pain... it may not come till the resurrection, but indeed, oh yes indeed it will come. God is many things at many times of many needs, He is the provider, sustainer, creator, innovator, re-creator, preserver, cleanser, protector, author, life giver.. and more are you alive? are you forgiven? do you have faith? are you holding up in a long struggle? do you spend time surrounded by nature? are you bearing up in discouragement? are you buoyed up after a long course of more difficult days? are you living insights gained? are you hoping for better days? I offer that these are lenses by which we may glimpse God by faith.
  23. 4 points
    Kevin H

    Immigration & SDA Membership

    Thank you Bill. How my family got into the church; first my Grandma's aunt and her husband joined when a Bible lady from America came to Oslo. Looking at our history there was Mrs. White but also a lady Bible instructor, so I don't know which one brought my Grandma's Aunt and Uncle in. When Grandma immigrated to the USA she was befriended by a Scandinavian couple, a Norwegian wife and Danish Husband, the Hansens. Mr. Hansen was a colporteur. They were members of the Brooklyn church currently on Ocean Avenue but was originally in Bay Ridge and was a Danish-Norwegian church. This work with immigrants was key to our membership.
  24. 4 points
    Bill Cork

    The GC Takes a Position

    If all we are doing is trying to be welcoming when people come through the door, we're missing the boat. Why should they come to the door in the first place? We wouldn't have to tell people how welcoming we are if we spent more time in the community, getting to know people, and getting known by them. I was recently at a meeting with officials from the county public health office on building partnerships with faith-based organizations. One person in front of me mentioned the great things Adventists do (I had identified myself). But though I had invited others, I was the only Adventist present. That's just one example. We want to say we are welcoming, but at the same time many Adventist churches still advertise evangelistic series using deception. Leaving off the name, "Seventh-day Adventist." Hiding the sponsorship until the Sabbath is introduced. I'm glad I go to a church that is very welcoming. That's why I attend. But it also has a history of involvement in the community; it was a founder of the community's interfaith social ministry organization. A former pastor, retired in the congregation, is involved in campus ministry at the local high school. I'm active in local veterans organizations. People won't come to us to be welcomed if they don't see us on the streets, and in their lives.
  25. 4 points
    rudywoofs (Pam)

    Phoebe, a leader in the New Testament Church

    I disagree. Bringing the gospel to the people *is* the ultimate goal of those who endorse the ordination of women. It's sure as heck not because women want a job where they're basically on-call 24/7. It's not because they want to get rich from a hefty paycheck. It's not because they want to chair church board meetings where gripes and complaints need to be adjudicated. It's not because they like being under a microscope for what they say, what they do, and what they wear. It's not because they have a burning desire to be the object of scorn and derision from those who disagree with her choice of vocation. And it's definitely NOT because they want to "lord it over" men. The very idea of a woman spending thousands of dollars going through college and seminary with the sole goal of being a woman in a male-dominated UNDERPAID field is ludicrous and nonsensical. And it also defies logic to second guess a person's heartfelt calling by God to go into the ministry. Maybe the SDA church should start using dice to decide who should be ordained as pastors and leaders.... after all, it's scriptural.... the casting of lots was used time and time again in the Bible...
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