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Unprepared For Christ's Return?


bevin

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I don't just believe in something because everyone else is believing it. I have a brain to use. And I can count. And no where can I see a "second" coming. It simply does not make any sense. That is why I said it is a "tradition" to call it that.

I have shown you the evidence by simple addition that when he comes again it simply can not be a Second Coming. No matter how you look at it.

See the above math. And see above response #110471 that it is not even a coming at all. He will be in the heavens.

You said that the verse does not say "Messiah," but Christ is the Greek word, whereas Messiah is the Hebrew word; but both have exactly the same meaning and are interchangeable.

The issue is what does the Bible call His return? It calls it "coming again," and "second appearance," not his fifth appearance.

Hebrews 9:28 is not denying that the preincarnate Christ was on earth before. That is not at issue. All, or at least most, SDA certainly are aware that the One we call Jesus Christ is Yahweh, or Jehovah, and that as such He visited the earth on a number of occasions prior to his birth as a human.

Counting how many times the One we call Christ visited earth in His pre-incarnate state or even how many times He went to heaven and then came back will not help in the matter of deciding whether to call His parousia "fifth coming" or "second coming." What matters is that the Bible itself says "Christ... will appear the second time" when he comes to save those who are waiting for Him, and that therefore this is what virtually all Christians call it-- the Second Coming. Again, Hebrews 9:28 clearly says that Christ, the Messiah, the Anointed One, "will appear the second time." Why not let the Scriptures determine what we call Christ's parousia, or coming?

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John 317 ... I will let you call it whatever you want. I think we can put this one to rest.

But in all due respect, Redwood, the evidence shows that I am not the one calling it whatever I want to. I am only calling it what every other Christian scholar I know of calls it. It is also common to call Christ's return "the Second Advent," a name that is obviously relevant to all Seventh-day Adventists.

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One other important verse that we haven't considered on this subject is Acts 1: 11, in which the angels tell the disciples, "This [same] Jesus...will come in the same way as you saw him go into heaven."

Let it be noticed that it says "come in the same way." The reason it is called the first and second comings is that in all those other times when the pre-incarnate Christ and even the post-incarnate Christ visited this earth, it was not "in the same way" as He came in the first coming, nor were those visits done in the same way as He will come the second time.

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"So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation." Hebrews 9:28

Of course, on a technicality, you are "correct" in saying that the phrase "second coming" is not in the Bible; but, the phrase "second time" is definitely referred to here in this text.

Now, if we follow your logic here in using only textual evidence (which I agree we should do here) then we must examine just WHO the text says it will be "the second time" for? Is it the second time for everyone? Who does the Bible explicitly say "second time" in reference to Jesus coming again? What does the text refer to when it says "second time?"

For me, personally, Jesus only appeared once, to die, to "bear my sins," and because I "look for Him;" He will appear just one more time, the second time, to meet with me "in the air;" and take me home. May God continue to bless these interesting studies on Club Adventist! :JF

Exactly. The one we know as Jesus Christ did visit the earth on other occasions, for instance when he spoke to Paul, yet those were not public and physical appearances such as the angels in Acts 1:11 said we should look for.

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Why would you refuse to use language describing Christ's return that the Bible itself uses? It's uses "coming" many times in reference to Christ's return.

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we really should use the language the Bible uses.

John ... MY point is exactly what you have said. Why do you continue to use language that is not even in the Bible. The term "second coming" which YOU say is used "many times" ... is actually NEVER used. It is only tradition.

Look up a good concordance ... you will not find the words "second coming" together anywhere in the Bible. It is simply not a Biblical term. So ... why do you keep using it?

Again ... I would have you look at what happened. Jesus has already come the second time since His death and resurrection ... so why would you continue to use an UnBiblical term?

Here is my answer:

11 Greek words are employed in the New Testament to [color:#FF0000]refer to the very same second advent of our Lord:

Parousia (James 5:8)-- "the coming of the Lord draws near"-- word referring to Christ's return occurs mostly in Matthew.

Erchomai (Luke 19:13)-- "occupy till I come"-- word occurs in other 3 gospels; see also John 14:3, "I will come back" or "come again."

Apokulupto-- (2 Thess. 1:7)-- "when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed"

Epiphaneia-- (1 tim. 6:14) "The appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ"

Harao (passive verb)-- (Hebrews 9:28) "Christ...will appear the second time" (see also its uses at John 16: 22 [active verb]; [passive verb] Acts 2:3; 26:16; 7:26.)

Phaneroo--(1 Peter 5:4) "When the Chief Shepherd shall appear"

Prosopon-- (2 Thess. 1:9) "from the presence of the Lord."

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Analuo--(Luke 12:36)-- "He will return from the wedding"

Hupostrepho-- (Luke 19:12)-- "...to receive...a kingdom, and to return..."

Ephistemi-- (Luke 21:34)-- "...that day come upon you unawares..."

Heko--(Rev. 2:25) -- "Hold fast till I come"

What these 11 Greek words show is that they are all referring to and describing the very same event, and therefore it is accurate to say "the second appearance" or the "the second coming" or the second Advent. They are all one-- all undistinguishable as to the event they have reference to. Clearly, then, Christ's second appearence is His second coming.

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I don't just believe in something because everyone else is believing it. I have a brain to use. And I can count. And no where can I see a "second" coming. It simply does not make any sense. That is why I said it is a "tradition" to call it that.

I have shown you the evidence by simple addition that when he comes again it simply can not be a Second Coming. No matter how you look at it.

See the above math. And see above response #110471 that it is not even a coming at all. He will be in the heavens.

Redwood, you contradict Jesus Himself because He said many times, and so did many other prophets of God say, that He was "coming again," and it was this same event that He and the prophets were talking about.

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It does not matter what church you have membersship in. I have seriously considered dropping my membership many times. It means nothing to me. But, now ... my wife is a Pastor so I guess I will be stuck with my membership.

No. If you say that ALL Catholics are lost ... I will equally say that ALL SDAs are lost. We are all lost and in need of a Saviour. One of my best Christian friends is a Catholic. He really loves the Lord. We have far better talks about the Love of God than I can get from any local SDAs.He is a man of prayer.

So ... Don't you dare try to judge my Christian Friend. From what I have witnesed from SDAs ... I don't think we are in a place to judge.

When the sealing comes ... we will all be sealed according to what is in our hearts. Jesus will judge our hearts ... NOT our knowledge. It is not our knowledge that will save us. PTL !!

SO ... The answer is .... All Catholics and ALL SDAs will be destroyed if they do not accept Jesus as their Saviour.

Redwood, I am sincerely glad you are a Seventh-day Adventist, and I wouldn't want you to be anything else; but may I be perfectly honest and say your post here is evidence that sadly you seem to have little understanding of what it means to be a Seventh-day Adventist or why a person should be one. I say this respectfully and kindly and lovingly. I say this being as much of a friend as I can be without having met you.

Why would you consider dropping out of the SDA church? If you think this way, you cannot have a firm conviction that you should be SDA-- that is, if you are, as you say, "stuck with being SDA" mainly because of your wife's job as a pastor? Does your wife think the same? I doubt it, unless she is only in the church because of her job. I pray this is not the case. I also pray that you will study and pray and talk with brothers in the church about your evident bitterness and anger.

If you feel and believe as you say you do, it seems to me that the honest thing would be to study what the Seventh-day Adventist church teaches and then if you cannot in good conscience teach and believe those same things, perhaps you should seriously consider withdrawing from the church, at least until you can support it wholeheartedly. Otherwise it seems hypocritical to be in a church whose teaching and practices one does not agree with. I wouldn't and couldn't belong to a church if I didn't believe its teachings. I wouldn't want to feel I am "stuck in a church" that I didn't really believe in. That is why I don't join the Catholic Church, for instance, or why I don't join any other church. I believe in about 75% of the teachings of the Jehovah's Witnesses, whose teachings actually are close to SDAs in many respects; but I don't join them because I have too many disagreements and couldn't possibly try to persuade someone to believe as they do, because they teach dangerous, false doctrines, just as the Catholic church does.

May I ask you seriously why you don't join the Catholic Church? Is there any other Christian group you agree with more than with SDA teachings? Why, in short, are you a Seventh-day Adventist?

I must say it seems to me-- you'll forgive me, please, if I am wrong-- that you have not studied deeply what the SDA church does teach and believe.

You are right in what you say about everyone needing to accept Jesus as Savior and Lord. That is very true, of course. But what you don't seem to grasp is that there is a lot more to being saved than our saying that we love and accept Jesus Christ. There will also be many lost who said that. Do you believe that? The Bible says this over and over again. So, there must be something necessary beyond saying you love and accept Jesus. Wouldn't you agree?

I am not "judge" of anyone and I'm glad I'm not. Jesus Christ alone is judge. What we can say, and are duty-bound to say, is what the Bible says. The Bible says, Come out of Babylon, my people, so that you will not be a partaker of Babylon's sins and of the punishment in the seven last plagues that will fall on her.

What and who is Babylon and what will happen to it and to those who are in her and support her when Christ returns? What does the Seventh-day Adventist church teach is the answer to this question? That is the very question this thread is intended to answer. I'll offer my answer today in several posts if my computer stays on.

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I would like to point out that sin is going against what you know to be right. Not keeping the Sabbath is only a sin ... if you know it is right and then purposefully going against it. And only God can judge what is in your heart.

Many Catholics do not know the Sabbath truth and so are not held accountable for it. And in the end ... we all sin and come short of the glory of God and need the sacrifice of Jesus.

True. The Seventh-day Adventist church has always taught this. The teaching that all who remain in the Catholic church or in other false religious organizations, such as fallen protestant churches, will be destroyed at Christ's second appearance, or second coming, does not contradict what you say here.

Ellen White's book, The Great Controversy, makes the same point you have made here. I am not saying anything different here, either, and I have said as much several times.

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...I would propose that John 317 wants us to all be robots. He doesn't appear to allow us to study and make our own determinations. He wants us to follow blindly what HE thinks the SDA church stands for. I would also hope that all here are good students of the Bible. But, I would hope we do allow them to come to their own conclusions. The Holy Spirit is to direct us in all truth ... NOT the SDA church. I would read LESS of church doctrine and more of the Bible...

...I like to hear John 317's thoughts unless he tries to propose there is one way and only one way which is his way. I would hope that is not what he is doing. But I have to admit that it sounded like that to me.

Let us not discount all the work Jesus has done in coming to this Earth over and over again for us by referring to a SECOND Coming. Sorry ... it is just a pet peeve.

Anyone reading what I am presenting can see that I am asking readers to examine the evidence and consider the arguments and not simply stating conclusions. I ask people to weigh the evidence and arguments and then make up their own minds. That is what the Bible itself does. The history of God's acts are the evidence and based upon that, God's asks each of us to make up our minds whether to obey and worship Him or Satan. Those are the only choices. As Saint Paul says, "Let every man make up his own mind."

No one wants anyone to follow blindly what the Seventh-day Adventist church teaches. In fact, I would recommend that if someone examines closely what the Seventh-day Adventist church teaches and comes to the conclusion that the SDA church does not teach the truth or that they don't want to follow its practices, they ought not to become members of the church.

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Hey John 317 ... A lot of good thoughts and information. I thought we might be done with this topic and agree to disagree but I see there is more to desire to rehash all this. That's fine.

Let me start off by saying I think this is not a big matter. I just think that you all can't count. Not something I would leave the church over though as you have suggested.

I agree with all the major teachings of the SDA church. So ... why the suggestion to "study with the leaders" bit? I've been an SDA for 40 years. I think I know plenty about SDAs. I would gladly give up membership though ... because of one reason. I simply to not believe it matters. I do not believe in Membership of any church. I am a member of the Body Of Christ and that is all that matters to me.

So ... like I say ... you can take my membership. I really don't care. But, I would not be giving it up because of any disagreement with the teachings of the church.

Back to our discussion. As far as the evidence you have presented ... I would agree that even though my strict use of the term "coming" does not allow me to call his advent a coming because he will not be on the Earth but in the heavens ... I will give you that the Bible does call it a "coming" for some reason. But, where we disagree is that I do not believe it is His "second" coming. And the return will not be like ANY of his other "comings". So ... there must be some other understanding of what the Bible teaches other than what you have presented. His "first coming" as you call it was to come in a manger. He will not come again in that manner.

I am not aware of any SDA who believes in every single belief and practice of the SDA church. I am confident that I could get my manual out and show you beliefs that even YOU would disagree with. There are many contradictions. But, to me they are not important unless you feel the church has reached perfection. I believe we are all human including the church so I think there will be error. I do not know of a perfect church to go to. So ... I will stick with a true but faulty one. So ... I am stuck with the church ... faults and all. And I hope I can contibute and help the church. I would like to see it less elitist and judgmental. That would be my goal.

But this discussion of only one Bible text that links his return with the word "second" does not really seem worthy of calling for the end of the church. I just think that the church is not able to count. I can forgive them. I would love to get in the mind of the reasoning for the use of the word second. But we can't.

I don't mean to be personal ... But I find that much of what you say sounds like that unless the rest of us believes in the way that you do ... we are in error. I come with a different attitude ... I believe that much of what I believe and the church believes will be shown to not be totally accurate when Jesus comes. AND I think that is fine.

I am sure you will deny that you are saying it is your way or the Highway . I am just saying that it SOUNDS like that. And that is another goal I have for the church to reach. I would like to see it more accepting of others. I think our church should be tolerant of those with a little different thought, less condemning and more accepting.

So ... when it comes to Catholic bashing ... I am a little sensitive.

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I will again say that my "external behavior" is worth nothing. It is NOT "important in determining whether we will be judged to have been loyal to God."

"I the Lord search the heart and examine the mind to reward everyone according to their conduct, according to what their deeds deserve." Jeremiah 17:10.

There are many verses in Scripture that teach the same thing.

There's an excellent book on this subject, written by a personal friend of mine, Bradley Williams, called, The Silencing of Satan, the Gospel In the Investigative Judgment. If the ABC doesn't have it, they would be glad to order it for you. It shows the Biblical support for the Investigative Judgment and also discusses at lenghth how it relates to the Christian's security in Christ.

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In fact ... I am willing to be judged right now as "NOT being loyal to God". My external behavior is NOT loyal to God. And like I said ... I guess that HE is not doing a very good job of working in me. It is only HE that works in me.

We need to discuss this further, Redwood. It is clear from your statements here that there are some important things that the Bible and SDAs teach but which you are not understanding or accepting.

Revelation 12:17 and 14:12 says that a certain group of followers of Christ actually do "keep [all of] the commandments of God and the faith of Jesus." You can do that too, with God's grace operating in your life. Please notice the text does not say, "They try to keep the commandments of God" but that they really do keep them.

It is true that none of us perfectly obeys God in everything at every moment of our Christian lives. But that is not the issue. The issue is whether our lives demonstrate our loyalty to Jesus Christ and to His kingdom. If our lives demonstrate that we are not loyal to Christ and His kingdom, we need to find out why and ask God to change us. That is what is called the process of sanctification, or being made holy, or being conformed day-by-day by the Spirit to the image of Christ. The Bible says that if that is not happening in our lives, we have good reason to believe we are not truly converted.

We should be able to look back and see how God has been leading us. That doesn't mean we will feel that we have arrived or that we do not still have sins to deal with and overcome through the blood of Christ. But we should not be dealing with the same old sins in our lives today that we were dealing with a few years ago. If we are continuing to commit the same sins day in and day out, and not overcoming them by the blood of Christ, we need to start asking some serious questions about our spiritual walk with Christ and praying that God will help us deal with those in ways that we obviously have failed to do in the past.

I know about this from personal experience, Redwood, because for more years than I care to tell, I battled homosexuality, and it almost destroyed me spiritually. I came within inches of losing that battle, of giving up, because after many years of struggle, I nearly came to the conclusion that there was no hope for me. I know many others are battling the same thing as well as a lot of other kinds of problems in their lives. It was understanding and grasping what the Bible teaches about the Pre-Advent Judgment-- in close connection with Christ our High Priest-- that finally helped me [or rather Jesus, working through me] to overcome sins in my own life. That is why this subject is not just a dry doctrine to me but is Christ Himself.

Please study 1 John and the whole of the book, Steps To Christ. Reading and rereading those things helped me overcome many of my own sins.

Let me ask you, have you studied about the Pre-Advent Judgment and do you understand it and believe in it?

The Pre-Advent Judgment has to do directly with the topic of this thread.

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... But I find that much of what you say sounds like that unless the rest of us believes in the way that you do ... we are in error. I come with a different attitude ... I believe that much of what I believe and the church believes will be shown to not be totally accurate when Jesus comes. AND I think that is fine.

I am sure you will deny that you are saying it is your way or the Highway . I am just saying that it SOUNDS like that. And that is another goal I have for the church to reach. I would like to see it more accepting of others. I think our church should be tolerant of those with a little different thought, less condemning and more accepting.

So ... when it comes to Catholic bashing ... I am a little sensitive.

Telling the truth about the Papal system and about the Catholic church's doctrines and history is not Catholic bashing. If we tell the truth about the Mass and about Hell and prayer to the saints, and if we do it in the context of Bible truth, that is doing what God wants us to do. That is doing our Catholic friends a favor. I know this because my wife has told her Catholic sisters about what happens when we die, and one sister is glad that she no longer has to worry about her dead husband coming to see her at night.

If we tell our friends the truth, it is always doing them a favor. Did Jesus refuse to tell the truth? Should we, who have the commission to tell the truth to the world in the gospel and three angels' message, do any less than Christ did? In fact, doesn't genuine love of neighbor require us to tell the truth as it is in Jesus? What will people say when in the judgment they ask why we, who knew these truths that could have saved them, did not tell them? Will we say we didn't tell them the truth because we were afraid of offending them, or because we were embarrassed, or ashamed, or because we didn't want people to think we were old fashioned or because we didn't want to disturb their affection for false doctrines? How about if we tell them we were afraid they would think we were not open minded?

The question we need to ask ourselves is, whom do we fear more-- God or man? Are we out to please man or God? If we are out to please man, let us by all means keep our peace. If we are out to please God, and hasten Christ's return, let us shout it from the house tops so that the whole world can hear us, and not care a dime what people think of us. What matters is not what they think of us but what they think of God. How many things ought we to have done and failed to do because of our fear of man's opinions? I say this based on my own past mistakes and failings in this area. Years wasted because I respected man more than I did God and His word.

Yes, I agree with you that after Jesus comes, we will all have some surprises as to what we may have been wrong about.

Yet for all that, we have a duty to speak of what we believe the Bible teaches, even if we could be wrong. I have a friend at my work, who I enjoy talking to almost every night about the Bible. We have different views of some things, and that is OK. I don't even know if he attends church or what church he belongs to, if any. But we have fun talking about Jesus and about the Bible and Christianity. He tells me what he thinks and I tell him what I think. I wouldn't think of asking him to suppress his convictions or to talk a different way. I want him to feel totally free to express himself, just as I know he is glad that I feel free to say what I believe. That's how it is on this thread and on CA as far as I'm concerned. Just because I tell you that I believe such-and-such doesn't mean I want you to accept what I say unless you are persuaded by the evidence.

As Christians, we tell people, "Unless you are born from above, you cannot possibly see the kingdom of heaven." Now what if that person we are talking to says they don't believe it or that they don't want to be born from above? Are we supposed to say, "Well OK maybe I am wrong. Maybe you can get into God's kingdom after all even if you are not born from above"? No, of course not. God's word is clear and we have a solemn responsibility to tell the truth of the gospel of Jesus Christ. It's possible we will one day find out that we were wrong in that understanding, yet we have no choice but to go by what the Bible clearly says on that subject as on many other subjects the Bible deals with. Martin Luther was wrong on many things, but thank God he was not afraid to express them strongly when he felt convicted something was true. I am sure God will have to take Brother Martin aside and let him in on some secrets-- such as how he was wrong about the Sabbath and his friend was right. And Bro. Martin will listen, and so will I.

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Hey John 317 ... A lot of good thoughts and information. I thought we might be done with this topic and agree to disagree but I see there is more to desire to rehash all this. That's fine.

Let me start off by saying I think this is not a big matter. I just think that you all can't count. Not something I would leave the church over though as you have suggested.

I agree with all the major teachings of the SDA church. So ... why the suggestion to "study with the leaders" bit? I've been an SDA for 40 years. I think I know plenty about SDAs. I would gladly give up membership though ... because of one reason. I simply to not believe it matters.

Based on what you've written, I have some doubt that you agree with what the church teaches on a number of important issues. Such as the Pre-Advent Judgment and what constitutes the Three Angles Messages and Babylon. Those are actually some very important doctrines in the church, and they relate directly to the question this thread poses. Another major doctrine of the church has to do with Ellen White. Do you believe that she was a true prophet of God? I do. The reason I do is that I have read most of what she wrote and am convinced by the weight of evidence that she was a true prophet whom God sent to our church. (And yes, I am very familiar with all the arguments about her that are found on the Internet and in the many books written to show her to have been a false prophet, starting with D.M. Canright's book and including all the latest.)

I don't think I suggested that you "study with the leaders." If I did, that was wrong. I meant to say study what the Adventist church teaches and compare it with the Bible. However, studying what the church teaches means that we study the primary books published by the church for the express purpose of communicating the church's doctrines. Don't you agree? One such book recently published is What Seventh-day Adventists Believe. That book was put together by about 150 different Adventist contributors and then OK'd by the General Conference to express our doctrines, so I think it is about official a representation of SDA beliefs as the church has ever published. It may not be the best written book of its kind in terms of style but there can be no doubt as to its standing or authority to convey what we as a church believe. No single man but many people, including some women, were responsible for that book. Another book of its kind that is well worth reading is The Reign of God, written by Richard Rice. (Dr. Rice was my teacher in Systematic Theology at Loma Linda. He also wrote a controversial book called, The Openness of God.)

I also didn't mean to give the impression that I am degnigrating your knowledge or experiece. I only know what I read here. So I could be wrong because you may not be communicating properly or I might be somehow completely misunderstanding you. Please let me know if that is the case, and if so, where I have been wrong.

I don't necessarily believe everything the SDA church teaches just because the church teaches it. I was born into an Adventist family and was baptized when about 14. Later I left the church and left Christ. I got into some terrible things. I began reading philosophy and literature and doing a lot of thinking, and finally got into the Bible. I began reading and reading and talking to various people, and finally I decided that I wanted to become a Seventh-day Adventist Christian. My gay companion at the time, who was Catholic, decided to do the same. In fact, he decided he wanted to be baptized and become an SDA before I decided to do it. That was the beginning of my "journey." I became a Seventh-day Adventist because I studied the church's teachings and agree with them. I have come a long ways since then, and it hasn't been easy. I would have become a Seventh-day Adventist minister long ago except that I was still in the grip of homosexuality, though I was struggling against it. I hadn't yet let Jesus have full control of me. The truth is, I loved being with men more than I loved being with the man Christ Jesus.

I don't know of any doctrine of the SDA church that is in, say, Seventh-day Adventist's Believe, that I disagree with. The problems with the SDA church are not that our doctrines are false. Our problem is just what the straight and true testimony of Jesus says it is the letter to the church of Laodicea, as found in Rev. 3: 14-22.

As a people we have the truth, -- but so often that truth is only in our books. I think that is our greatest problem. Because until those truths move from the books and into our minds and hearts, the church cannot do what it is supposed to do, and as a consequence, Jesus will continue to delay His coming for His church. The delay is not about what is going on in the world but what is going on in the Seventh-day Adventist church. It is about you and me not being ready. We're the cause of the delay. If Jesus came today, we wouldn't be ready and He wants us to go home with Him.

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for there is no such word as "psycho-ceramics"

There certainly is! You just used it and Neil used it several time! Ceramics we know has to do with 'pot's and psycho with the soul, so it refers to hard souls that can crack. Soft souls are more durable. 'Crackpots' get cracked because of their rigid inflexibility.

Keep up the good work, Neil! We need a few new exciting words for the next Websters!

~d.allan

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As a people we have the truth, -- but so often that truth is only in our books. I think that is our greatest problem. Because until those truths move from the books and into our minds and hearts....

Dear John, isnt that jes backweerds? How did it git inta books? Frum uther books? May be the sources available to ussens too! ('cuse speln, jus feline mischeeveeus)... bwink

!d.allan!

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As a people we have the truth, -- but so often that truth is only in our books. I think that is our greatest problem. Because until those truths move from the books and into our minds and hearts....

Dear John, isnt that jes backweerds? How did it git inta books? Frum uther books? May be the sources available to ussens too! ('cuse speln, jus feline mischeeveeus)... bwink

!d.allan

What I am saying is somewhat similar to what the book of Hebrews says, that God wants the Ten Commandments written on our hearts and in our minds rather than on tablets of stone.

We have the Bible truth and the truths written in Seventh-day Adventists publications. (The sources of those truths are the Bible, first, and, secondarily, the Spirit of Prophecy. The ultimate source is God the Father who gives His Holy Spirit to those who obey Him.) There's nothing wrong with our doctrines. We just have to put them into practice. For instance, the doctrine having to do the Pre-Advent Judgment and the Three Angels Messages. Our problem as a church is that most of the church has not even totally accepted and practiced them, let alone proclaimed or communicated them. We can't communicate something we haven't understood or accepted ourselves. The understanding, accepting and giving of those messages has to do directly with the question posed by this thread.

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for there is no such word as "psycho-ceramics"

There certainly is! You just used it and Neil used it several time! Ceramics we know has to do with 'pot's and psycho with the soul, so it refers to hard souls that can crack. Soft souls are more durable. 'Crackpots' get cracked because of their rigid inflexibility.

Keep up the good work, Neil! We need a few new exciting words for the next Websters!

~d.allan

Perhaps you would have liked me more when I was not a Christian. I was not at all rigid then. There was almost nothing I wouldn't do and I loved making people happy. I was popular and I loved it. There was nothing more important to me. Now I only do what I know my Savior and Master want me to do and some people call me rigid and inflexible. I know that is what Satan hates so he tempts me to get back into doing those same things I used to do. He hates me and hates God and wants me to be eternally lost right along with him and billions of others. He wants me to pay attention to what people say. But I don't care any more what people say or think. I only care what God thinks of me and what He calls me. He calls me righteous and just and perfect because He does not see my sins any more. He sees only Christ's perfect righteousness. I am letting Him clean me up and wash me with His Spirit, taking from me all those characteristics of Satan and replacing them with the characteristics of God, such as love and forgiveness and patience and self-control. I'm rigid and inflexible when it comes to obedience to God and love of His word. I confess it openly and without shame. In fact, if I am ashamed of anything, it is that I waited so long to become rigid and inflexible in my loyalty to God. I would say with Paul, I wish that all men and women might become as I am, except for the sins that used to bind me. But, praise the Lord, He freed me, just as it says in Romans 7:24, 25 and 1 John 5:5. Today, I no longer live to please people but "I delight in the law of God." If I lived to please people, I would not be interested in helping to give the Third Angels Messages, because those messages will never be popular with the world any more than Jesus Christ was or is. On the contrary, it is precisely when the church practices and proclaims the Third Angels' Messages in the power of the Spirit that the church will be persecuted and hated for Jesus' sake. That is when Satan will fight against the remnant of Christ's seed and attempt to wipe them out. Do you believe that?

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Not really interested in your perfectionism teachings John 317. Have no desire to study them or achieve the perfection that you speak of.

You see ... no matter how evil I may be ... God's perfection is placed to my account. I am looked upon as Perfect even though I am not. I have no desire to achieve this perfection of yours. I am evil and have need of Christ's life in place of mine.

I like the verse you quoted ...

Quote:
"I the Lord search the heart and examine the mind to reward everyone according to their conduct, according to what their deeds deserve." Jeremiah 17:10.

When it comes to being judged ... my conduct is the life of Jesus because that is the record for which I will be judged. His life is in the place of mine. Those who reject Jesus will have to have their own lives judged because all those who are not judged as perfect will die. I will be judged as perfect so I do not have to worry. My conduct, that will be judged ,is that I accept the life of Jesus in the place of mine. If you do not conduct yourself in that manner ... you will die.

So ... there are some important things that you are teaching that I do not accept. And that is most of what you say. I reject it but if you are happy with perfection ideas ... then go for it. I say ... to each His own. Good Luck.

There is no need for a discussion on this topic ... I could throw texts after text and you would not accept it. Which is fine. You have your belief and I have mine. I wish you the best of luck with pertaining your perfection. Perhaps you think you have already achieved it now.? But, I am not interested in it . Thank you. My perfection is in Christ. And when He comes I will be transformed. I will not be changed to perfection before His coming. I wish you luck at achieving yours.

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Not really interested in your perfectionism teachings John 317. Have no desire to study them or achieve the perfection that you speak of.

You see ... no matter how evil I may be ... God's perfection is placed to my account...

But let me assure you that I am at all talking about "perfectionism."

I am only saying what is found in 1 John; Revelation 3:14-22; Romans 5 through 8; and in 2 Peter 1: 1-11. It is really the Three Angels' Messages which is described in the 12th chapter, "The Remnant and Its Mission," of the book, Seventh-day Adventists Believe. It is also described in Chapter 10, "The Experience of Salvation," in the same book. I am saying no more than you will find in these paragraphs in this book that explains SDA beliefs. To get the entire view of the church's teachings, you would need to study the entire chapter, particularly the last few pages. I'm sure you'll agree that the following paragraphs contain wonderful news to the person struggling with sin and desiring to be free of its domination:

"The realization that the Savior's blood covers our sinful past brings healing to body, soul, and mind. Feelings of guilt may be dispensed with, for in Christ all is forgiven, all is new. By daily bestowing His grace, Christ begins transforming us into the image of God.

"As our faith in Him grows our healing and transformation progress, and He gives us increasing victories over the powers of darkness. His overcoming of the world guarantes our deliverance from the slavery of sin (John 16:33).

"...Salvation includes living a sactified life on the basis of what Christ accomplished at Calvary. Paul appealed to believers to live a life consecrated to ethical holiness an moral conduct (1 Thess. 4:7).

"...At the Second Advent we will be changed physically. This corruptible mortal body will put on immortality (1 Cor. 15: 51-54). However, our characters must undergo transformation in preparation for the Second Advent...

"...In God's sight, a perfect person is one whose heart and life are wholly surrendered to the worship and service of God, who is constantly growing in divine knowledge, and who is, through God's grace, living up to all the light he has received while rejoicing in a life of victory (cf. Col. 4:12; James 3:2).

"...Through the indwelling Christ we grow up to spiritual maturity. Through God's gifts to His church we can develop 'to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ' (Eph. 4:13). We need to grow beyond our spiritual childhood experience (Eph. 4:14) beyond the basic truths of Christian experience, moving on to the 'solid food' prepared for mature believers (Heb. 5:14). 'Therefore.' Paul said, 'leaving the discussion of the elementary principles of Christ, let us go on to perfection' (Heb. 6:1).

"...Christians "need more than a purely legal justification or sanctification. They need holiness of character even though salvation is always by faith. The [b]title to heaven rests on the righteousness of Christ only. In addition to justification, God's plan of salvation provides through this title a fitness for heaven by the indwelling Christ. This fitness must be revealed in man's moral character as evidence that salvation 'has happened.'

"What does this mean in human terms? Continual prayer is indispensable for living a sanctified life that is perfect at every stage of development...

"...By contemplating the Lord's glory and fixing our eyes on the attractive lovliness of Christ's character, we 'are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory' (2 Cor. 3:18, NIV)-- we are being prepared for the transformation we will experience at the Second Advent..."

(pp. 124-129). (Please see also pp. 130-131.)

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This is a general comment, not intended for any one specific person.

I see the Bible as telling us that it does matter very much which church we belong to.

The first and biggest reason is simply that if you were in a given Church; and God Himself told you he could best use you in another certain Church; why would you say it doesn't matter which church you go to?

The Bible is filled with examples of God telling people where to go and what to do and how they variously reacted.

While at the same time that Rev.18:4 is calling people out of the false churches; it is also saying that WHILE the ones being called out are still in BABYLON, they are "His People." God calls them "My People" while they are still in Babylon,not after they come out, or as they are coming out.

Quote:
4 And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues.

God wants us where He knows we will be safe from partaking in "her sins" and as much as some would hate to admit it; that may not be in certain of OUR Churches right now. Some of them yes. Some of them no.

As a denomination; God has a special destiny for this Church; The Seventh-day Adventist Church. But we have no theological or moral right to exclude Catholics from this destiny.

I study both in person and on the net with Catholics right now. They point their fingers at us a lot because they feel they are being unfairly maligned by the Adventist Church. The average Catholic does not speak about us, the way some of our unabashed "conservatives" do, nor do they call us "the mark of the beast" types of names.

We have fallen into the trap of judging people instead of ideas or doctrines. What really bothers me is that some of us call that "truth."

Before anyone tries to "rescue" me; I am a staunch believer and defender of all our traditional doctrines; I just think that we have forgotten the true meaning of a doctrine; and how to use it.

Quote:
2 John 1:9 Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son.
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...As a denomination; God has a special destiny for this Church; The Seventh-day Adventist Church. But we have no theological or moral right to exclude Catholics from this destiny.

I study both in person and on the net with Catholics right now. They point their fingers at us a lot because they feel they are being unfairly maligned by the Adventist Church. The average Catholic does not speak about us, the way some of our unabashed "conservatives" do, nor do they call us "the mark of the beast" types of names.

We have fallen into the trap of judging people instead of ideas or doctrines. What really bothers me is that some of us call that "truth."...

I agree with everything you said here. I would just like to add a few comments for the purpose of clarification.

I assume you know, based on what I have written several times on this thread, that my understanding of SDA doctrine is that the church does not exclude Roman Catholics from salvation. However, the false doctrines in the Catholic church-- such as the Mass, the human priesthood, the Papacy, Penance, the Sunday, Prayer to the dead and to Mary, Hell and Purgatory, and many others-- do make it virtually impossible for Catholics to understand the truth about Christ's work in the heavenly sanctuary, and to prepare for Christ's return. That is the reason the Three Angels' Messages are essential, to teach them the truth about God and to help people prepare for the Second Advent.

Whenever these issues are discussed, it's always important to remind everyone that we are discussing doctrine and Catholicism as a system, not individual Catholics. Virtually all of my in-laws, whom I love as my own family, are Roman Catholics. My wife was Catholic at the time I married her, and if she were Catholic today, I would still love her and continue to be married to her.

So, again, we are talking about what the Seventh-day Adventist church, and by the same token the Bible, teaches about these issues, and not denigrating individual Catholics. As you point out, and as I pointed out in an earlier, separate post, God still has millions of His people in the Roman Catholic Church. Ellen White herself makes the same point in The Great Controversy and elsewhere. It evidently bears repeating, then, that the question we are discussing here is, what does the Seventh-day Adventist church teach will happen to people who decide to remain in the Catholic Church-- or in any other false religious system-- after probation ends and right up to the Second Advent of Christ?

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