With Cloak and Dagger

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With Cloak and Dagger

H. H. MEYERS

 

New Millennium Publications Post Box 290

Morisset N. S.W. 2264. Australia  

CONTENTS

1   The Experts    

2   "750 Pages of Wonderful Truth"     3 "Crisis," He Cried!        

4   The Dagger     

5   The Cloak  

6   The Last Deception          7 Movement of Destiny      8 "Impeaching the Dead" 

9      The 1888 Message (and the Evangelical View) 

10   The Dagger Strikes (Part 1) 

11   The Dagger Strikes (Part 2)  12 False Claims and Trickery 

13   Kingdom, Czardom or Popedom? 

14   The Atonement: Completed or Uncompleted-Who Cares? 

15   Target: Australia 

16   "We Need More Funerals" 

17   Australasia Embraces Heresy 

18   The Jewel is Plucked 

19   Conflicting Claims 

20   Deception, or Wishful Thinking? 

21   Hierarchy in Action 

22   This Way to Rome 

23   "We Still Believe" 

24   The Washington "Curia" 

25   Rome's Little Helper 

26   "A New Order" 

27   Eighteen Forty-Four to Evermore           

Appendix for Chapter 10 

Appendix for Chapter 13 

Appendix for Chapter 16 

Appendix for Chapter 17 

Appendix for Chapter 19 

Appendix for Chapter 20 

Appendix for Chapter 21 

Appendix for Chapter 25

 

Abbreviations

QOD Seventh-day Adventists Answer Questions on Doctrine 

MOD Movement of Destiny

B.R.I. Bible Research Institute (Australasia)

EEOC Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (USA) 

G.C. General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists 

SDA Seventh-day Adventist 

TAUC Trans-Australian Union Conference 

TTUC Trans-Tasman Union Conference

ARV American Revised Version

AV  Authorized Version (same as King James Version) 

KJV King James Version

N.T. New Testament

NASB New American Standard Bible 

NEB New English Bible 

NIV New International Version 

NKJV New King James Version 

RSV Revised Standard Version 

RV  Revised Version 

TEV Today's English Version

CE  Counsels to Writers and Editors

Ev  Evangelism

EW Early Writings

RH Review and Herald

1SM Selected Messages, 

Book 1 1SOP Spirit of Prophecy, Vol. 1 

ST  Signs of the Times

1T  Testimonies for the Church, Vol. 1

TM Testimonies to Ministers and Gospel Workers

 

PREFACE

This book is written for generic Seventh-day Adventists; those within the denomination of that name and equally, those who are numbered among the increasing groups of believers who, by conscience or expulsion, find themselves outside the pale of the denomination.

The author does not presume to engage in a definitive defense of historic Seventh-day Adventism-inspiration and libraries of Adventist publications do just that, adequately. This book will demonstrate that basic fundamental principles which were endorsed by God's prophet to His remnant church as having "unquestionable authority," have since been systematically eroded and even changed. It explains how this change has been made possible and is now being consolidated by a system of church administration which has been set in place contrary to the expressed will of God.

As the readers progress through these pages, they will notice how the church's failure to heed the warnings of its prophet, Mrs. E. G. White, repeatedly prove her dictum that "a backsliding church lessens the distance between itself and the Papacy."

The author, who is an Australian, has been an Adventist all his life. Therefore many of the illustrations used in support of his propositions are drawn from his own knowledge and experiences within the South Pacific Division.

Many of our readers will note a similarity of conduct in their own country, some even having experienced the heavy hand of state-assisted persecution.

Sadly, many precious souls are now being admitted into church membership with a limited knowledge of Adventism. Increasingly, many of these people are further disadvantaged as they train to take up positions in our ministry and education system, that seem bent on exchanging the "testimony of Jesus" for the "doctrines of men." With such people in mind, the author has included an extensive appendix which will give them an insight into the true position of Adventism on Christ and His ministry.

It is the sincere desire of the author that this humble attempt to arouse God's people from their Laodicean dreamtime will reawaken in the reader that burning commitment which the pioneers so gladly exhibited in taking to a judgment-bound world the "everlasting gospel," as found in the revelation of Jesus. We can then pray with sincerity, "Even so, come, Lord Jesus. Amen. " The Author

CHAPTER 1 - THE EXPERTS

The late Donald G. Barnhouse read a copy of that Seventh day Adventist classic, Steps to Christ. This book has led innumerable people to accept the Lord Jesus Christ as their personal Saviour. Many servicemen during two world wars treasured its precious message which brought hope and comfort to their uncertain existence. It made quite an impression on Dr. Barnhouse; so much so that he gave the book prominent mention in his evangelical magazine Eternity, June 1950. Under the heading "How to Read Religious Books," he claimed that reading such a book with its "half-truths and satanic error" was akin to a worm on a hook, "the first bite is all worm, the second bite is all hook, that is the way the Devil works." It is not surprising then, that he referred to its author, Mrs. E. G. White, as "the founder of a cult."

Apparently, such a vicious attack on a church which claimed to be Christian provided no impediment to the growth of one of Protestantism's most popular magazines.* Such pronouncements evidently accorded with acceptable Christianity. For, were not Seventh-day Adventists just another cult? They were credited with believing that Jesus Christ was a sinner, and denying His completed work of salvation at the cross. They were legalists who believed in salvation by works, part of which was the keeping of the biblical Sabbath day. And, to cap it off, they had the temerity to claim that they were God's remnant church on whom God had bestowed the gift of prophecy! Yet, within six years, Dr. Barnhouse was able to declare:

“I should like to say that we are delighted to do justice to a much-maligned group of sincere believers, and in our minds and hearts take them out of a group of utter heretics to acknowledge them as redeemed brethren and members of the body of Christ.” (Eternity, September 15, 1956).

* Eternity magazine ceased publication while this book was being written. Shortly after, its one-time editor, Dr. Walter Martin, passed away.

Yes, he was referring to the Seventh-day Adventist Church! Our leaders were ecstatic. Adventists could now hold their heads high as Christendom extended their brotherly arms to welcome them into the fold.

What had brought about this dramatic change? Had Barnhouse seen the light, or had Adventism changed its "unchristian" views? Let Dr. Barnhouse provide some clues. On the 16th May 1958, while in conversation with Adventist layman Al Hudson, Barnhouse said:

“I hate Saturday as a Sabbath religious day. I hate it because God hates it.” (as reported in Pilgrims Rest DH 115, p. 1).

On Adventists' belief that they are the remnant church, Barnhouse said:

“If you believe that, you are a megalomaniac.” (ibid.).

He went on to comment on the prolific pen of Mrs. White: 

“That's too much, you know. She was running off at the mouth, and the Holy Spirit certainly was not doing it.” (ibid., p. 2).

And again,

“God Almighty never spoke through a woman.” (Pilgrims Rest DH 114, p. 1). 

“You [SDAs] were founded on a lie.” (ibid., p. 2).

The editor of Barnhouse's Eternity magazine was Dr. Walter Martin. While lecturing in the Christian Mission Church, Napa, California, as recently as 22 February 1983, on the subject of Seventh-day Adventist beliefs, he declared:

“There is no need for any investigative judgment at any time because Jesus took care of it all at the cross.”

Obviously, the three angels of Revelation fourteen had failed to impress Messrs. Barnhouse and Martin. During the late 1950s, as a result of some eighteen months of intense dialogue with highranking representatives of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, Barnhouse had insisted that Adventists publish their doctrinal beliefs. They did so under the title Seventh-day Adventists Answer Questions on Doctrine [QOD], Review and Herald Publishing Association, 1957.

This book became our passport to Christendom, and enabled Dr. Barnhouse to boast that he and Martin had changed the theology of a whole denomination (see Eternity, September 1956, pages 6, 7, 43, 45). Repeatedly we are told by Adventist leadership that we have not deviated from historical Adventism. In the Introduction to Questions on Doctrine we read: "This was not to be a new statement of faith." The writers, counsellors and editors "have labored conscientiously to state accurately the beliefs of Seventhday Adventists" (p. 8).

But shortly after proclaiming Adventists as part of the Christian community, Barnhouse, in commenting on Questions on Doctrine, was led to observe:

“Let's face it, in a very nice way, the leaders who have written this book, have moved from the traditional position of the S.D.A. movement. They've come back toward the Bible.” (Pilgrims Rest DH 114, p. 3).

Here is a serious anomaly which questions the integrity of our leadership. Seventh-day Adventists have been welcomed into the fraternity of Christendom on the basis of change. Our leaders claim that we have not changed. Has Christendom been duped? Have members of the S.D.A. Church become victims of the greatest confidence trick since Jacob awoke to find himself in bed with Leah?

 

CHAPTER 2- "750 Pages of Wonderful Truth"

After Questions on Doctrine was published by the Review and Herald Publishing Association in late 1957, General Conference president Reuben R. Figuhr was so proud of it that he claimed it to be the most significant achievement during his term of office.

Yet B. G. Wilkinson, veteran minister of the SDA Church, college administrator and author of the scholarly books, Truth Triumphant and Our Authorized Bible Vindicated had a decidedly different view. After reading the manuscript of QOD he is reported to have described it as a dagger aimed at the heart of the Seventh-day Adventist Church (recorded interview, Mike Clute).* 

* On January 14, 1985, evangelist Mike Clute recorded an interview with a friend of the Wilkinson family. Says Clute: “Of course, the gentleman whom I interviewed does not want his name disclosed or else he would have done so at the time of the interview.” (letter to Author, July 8, 1989).

The General Conference subsidized the cost of this book in order to ensure it would be widely distributed among non-Adventists. However, when it was offered to Adventists in Ministry magazine as "750 pages full of wonderful truth," the price was US $5.00.

But surprisingly, no one wanted his name connected with QOD, for we are told only that it was "prepared by a representative group of Seventh-day Adventist leaders, Bible teachers and editors." We are also told that the book "came into being to meet a definite need" (QOD p. 7), that a large Protestant publisher in the United States wanted to publish a book in which would be presented a general view of our history and beliefs, that the publishers approached the General Conference for information which resulted in an extensive search of our denominational literature and that there followed a series of meetings drawn out for over a year with the unnamed members of the committee (ibid.).

What we are not told is that the publisher was Dr. Donald Barnhouse, a champion of popular evangelical thought. Neither are we told that he had absolutely no time for Seventh-day Adventism. He had commissioned fellow evangelical Dr. Walter Martin, to expose our denomination as a cult. It was Martin who insisted that he research his subject thoroughly by requesting dialogue with General Conference officers and that he have access to our literature.

Subsequent to the ensuing meetings and publication of QOD, some participants have revealed the names of the GC conferees. They were elders:

T. E. Unruh, president of East Pennsylvania Conference

L. E. Froom, General Conference field secretary

R. A. Anderson, ministerial secretary and editor of Ministry 

W. E. Reed, General Conference field secretary

(reported by T. E. Unruh, Pilgrims Rest DH 101, 102)

These gentlemen were so amiable to their would-be inquisitors that the evangelicals were soon disarmed and within a very short time were on their knees praying for Christian unity.

As a result of these meetings, Barnhouse and Martin were assured that Seventhday Adventists were now sufficiently theologically tuned to popular evangelicalism to be regarded as Christians. So a deal was struck. If Adventists would publish satisfactory answers to some forty-eight questions, Eternity magazine would not expose us as a cult, but would instead, declare us to be a part of the Christian community. Barnhouse and Martin even offered to help out where we had difficulty in translating our "quaint" theological terminology into understandable Christian language.

The book, Questions on Doctrine, was the result. We were declared to be truly Christian, by people whom president Figuhr obviously admired as exponents of Christianity and as authorities on cultism. Was his confidence misplaced? We shall see.

When Walter Martin was later questioned about Roman Catholicism's standing in the cultist world, he replied: "Roman Catholicism is not a cult." Then he sought to preserve some credibility by adding, "But within the Roman Church there are cults, such as the cult of Mary. But the basic doctrines of the Roman Catholic Church are Christ's Catholic theology to which most Protestants subscribe." 

Do evangelicals no longer subscribe to the basic Christian belief that there is "one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus"? (1 Timothy 2:5.)

To faithful Seventh-day Adventists back in the mid-fifties it was a fearful doctrinal crisis in our Church. But to the believers in our day it is now seen to have marked the beginning of the end.

For the errors that the so-called "Evangelical Conferences" brought into our denomination grew throughout the sixties and seventies and were used by modernists in our Church, such as Desmond Ford, to lay a solid foundation for what is now called the "new theology”.

At that time, certain evangelical Protestants asked a small group of our leaders to

reconsider the stated beliefs of our denomination-and, if possible, to restate them in "theological terms" that would be acceptable to the Protestant world around us. That seemed but a small concession in view of the golden opportunity held out before us: unity and fellowship with the other Protestant churches is not one of the objectives of the second angel's message of Revelation 14:8, much less that of the third angel which follows it.

Vance Ferrell

"The Beginning of the End," DH 101.

 

CHAPTER 3 - "Crisis," He Cried!

The casual reader of Questions on Doctrine could be excused for not noticing any startling change in Adventist doctrine. Indeed, we are assured in the introduction that "this volume can be viewed as truly representative of the faith and beliefs of the Seventh-day Adventist Church" (pp 8, 9).

But some who were in a position to know claim that the original manuscript contained a great deal of error. It had to be toned down before those concerned with its printing would accept it. As one observer put it:

“The book editors at Review and Herald could not swallow it. And so it went back to the General Conference for further revisions. This is why the book is so mixed up. . . . The heresy was then more carefully worded to slip by the Review book editors.” (Pilgrims Rest DH104).

This is probably why it became acceptable to Martin and Barnhouse and yet did not immediately raise too great a storm among Adventists, especially among the ministry, the majority of whom were working long hours while conscientiously carrying out their chosen task of spreading the everlasting gospel.

We have already mentioned Dr. B. G. Wilkinson's reaction. Unfortunately we do not have a record of his thoughts in writing. But one retired veteran of the ministry, also a scholar, teacher and author, has recorded his opinion of Questions on Doctrine. He is Elder M. L. Andreasen, described in the SDA Encyclopedia as an authority on our message.*

*              Andreasen gave special study to the doctrine of the sanctuary and was considered an authority in that field (SDA Encyclopedia, 1976, p. 43)

Having read the manuscript of QOD, he repeatedly protested to General Conference president Figuhr concerning changes to our doctrines. After being curtly rebuffed, he wrote and circulated several open letters which were subsequently gathered together and published under the title of `Letters to the Churches. "* Andreasen warned,

“We have reached a crisis in this denomination when leaders are attempting to enforce false doctrine and threaten those who object. The whole program is unbelievable. Men are now attempting to remove the foundation of many generations, and think they can succeed. If we did not have the Spirit of Prophecy, we would not know of the departure from sound doctrine which is now threatening us and the coming of the Omega which will decimate our ranks and cause grievous wounds. The present situation has been clearly outlined. We are nearing the climax.” (Letters to the Churches No. 3).

Letters to the Churches is available from Hartland Publications, P 0 Box 1, Rapidan, VA, 22733, USA.

As a reward for his pains, the Conference rescinded Elder Andreasen's ministerial credentials and deprived him of his sustentation. When the poor man applied to the government for relief money, the Social Welfare men contacted our administrators who were shamed into restoring his allowance.

Elder Andreasen was an elderly man. As this champion of the faith lay brokenhearted on his deathbed, rejected and punished by the leadership of his beloved church, we can only imagine his anguish as he contemplated the fulfillment of Mrs. White's prophecy:

“Books of a new order would be written. A system of intellectual philosophy would be introduced.... Nothing would be allowed to stand in the way of the new movement.” (Special Testimonies Series B, No. 2, pp. 54, 55).

Or perhaps he would attempt to answer Mrs. White's rhetorical question pertaining to the Alpha of apostasy and apply it to the beginning of the Omega:**

** Referring to Sister White's remarks on books of a new order and the underhanded tearing down of the foundations of our faith, Andreasen said: “All this was written to meet the apostasy in the Alpha period. We are now in the Omega period which Sister White said would come.” (Letters to the Churches No. 6).

What influence is it that would lead men at this stage of our history to work in an underhanded, powerful way to tear down the foundations of our faith-the foundation that was laid down in the beginning of our work by prayerful study of the Word and by revelation? (Ibid.)

As we proceed, we shall seek to discover the answer to this question. We shall reveal the "underhanded" way in which a mere handful of men set themselves up as expositors of our faith and interpreters of the Spirit of Prophecy. We shall see how, under the protection of sympathetic presidents, they have literally "torn down the foundations of our faith."

Important truths concerning the atonement are taught by the typical service. A

substitute was accepted in the sinner's stead; but the sin was not cancelled by the blood of the victim. A means was thus provided by which it was transferred to the sanctuary. By the offering of blood, the sinner acknowledged the authority of the law, confessed his guilt in transgression, and expressed his desire for pardon through faith in a Redeemer to come; but he was not yet entirely released from the condemnation of the law. On the Day of Atonement the high priest, having taken an offering from the congregation, went into the most holy place with the blood of this offering, and sprinkled it upon the mercy seat, directly over the law, to make satisfaction for its claims. Then, in his character of mediator, he took the sins upon himself and bore them from the sanctuary. Placing his hands upon the head of the scapegoat, he confessed over him all these sins, thus in figure transferring them from himself to the goat. The goat then bore them away, and they were regarded as forever separated from the people.

Such was the service performed "unto the example and shadow of heavenly

things."

Ellen G. White

The Great Controversy, p. 420

 

CHAPTER 4 - The Dagger

Few Seventh-day Adventists in 1956 knew of the events which have since come to be known as the Evangelical meetings. They were cloaked in official secrecy. It was left to Dr. Barnhouse to drop what he called a bombshell, in September of that year. He published an article in Eternity magazine titled, "Are Seventh-day Adventists Christians?" (At the following General Conference session in 1958, the meetings were officially ignored.)

Speaking of the second meeting with the G. C. conferees, Barnhouse wrote:

“It was perceived that the Adventists were strenuously denying certain doctrinal positions which had previously been attributed to them. For instance, they stated that "they repudiated absolutely the thought that Seventh-day Sabbathkeeping was a basis for salvation," and later in his report, "that Sabbathkeeping is in any way a means of salvation" (Eternity, September 1956).

When Walter Martin pointed out to them that we had published teachings considered by Christendom to be anti-Christian, they professed surprise and "immediately brought the fact to the attention of the General Conference officers, that this situation might be remedied and such publications be corrected" (Eternity, September 1956, p. 6).

Barnhouse then reveals that the "same procedure was repeated regarding the nature of Christ while in the flesh, which the majority of the denomination has always held to be sinless, holy, and perfect, despite the fact that certain of their writers have occasionally gotten into print with contrary views completely repugnant to the church at large."* They further explained to Mr. Martin that they had among their number, members of the "lunatic fringe" even as there are similar wild-eyed irresponsibles in every field of fundamental Christianity (ibid., p. 7).

*              It is interesting that Larson does not appear to find one written statement by Figuhr, Froom, Anderson or Unruh, expressing their views on the nature of Christ prior to the Evangelical meetings. Apparently it was they who regarded our official view as repugnant, but, sensing their isolated position, they were not courageous enough to express their views publicly.

Of the sanctuary belief Barnhouse reported,

“They [the G. C. conferees] do not believe as some of their earlier teachers taught, that Jesus' atoning work was not completed on Calvary but instead, that He was still carrying on a second ministering work since 1844.* This idea is absolutely repudiated. They believe that since His ascension, Christ has been ministering the benefits of the atonement which He completed on Calvary.” (ibid.).

*              It is interesting to note that, although the conferees did not fool their inquisitors, Questions on Doctrine was able to claim that it was not a "new statement of faith" (QOD p. 8) without any apparent objection from Barnhouse and Martin.

So this is how Christendom at large and some SDA church members came to know of the historic meetings. Certainly, few Adventists realized that the doctrinal pillars of our faith were being traded for the smile of Christendom. Let us just summarize the understanding given by our leaders to Barnhouse and Martin and square it off with sound Adventist teaching.

1. That Sabbathkeeping is not in any way a means of salvation.

It is quite true that Sabbath observance is no guarantee of salvation. But it is equally true that those who have a knowledge of Sabbath truth and ignore it, will not be saved:

The keeping of the Sabbath is a sign of loyalty to the true God.... It follows that the message which commands men to worship God and keep His commandments, will especially call upon them to keep the fourth commandment (GC 438).

Sabbath observance is eternal:

And it shall come to pass, that from one new moon to another, and from one Sabbath to another, shall all flesh come to worship before Me, saith the Lord (Isaiah 66:23).

So we see that the conferees failed to uphold the message of the first angel of Revelation fourteen, and showed a reckless disregard for the dire warning of the third angel (Revelation 14:7, 9, 10).

2. That the majority of SDAs had always held that the incarnate Christ had a nature which was "sinless, holy and perfect" while the views of a minority, the "lunatic fringe," were "repugnant."

Here we come face to face with a statement which can only be resolved by arriving at one of two conclusions. Either these men had very short memories or they were deliberately deceiving the evangelicals. Either way, they disqualified themselves as competent representatives of the Seventh-day Adventist Church. Here are a few pertinent facts which will help readers to reach their own conclusions.

Just five years prior to the Evangelical meetings, Elder W. E. Read (one of the conferees) had quoted Sister White in a G. C. Bulletin, 1950, p. 154:

“Jesus was in all things made like unto His brethren. He became flesh even as we are.”

This was just one of a plethora of statements in Adventist literature upholding the biblical concept of a Saviour who came to this earth through the seed of Abraham and "was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin" (Hebrews 4:15).

Dr. Ralph Larson, in his monumental thesis, The Word Was Made Flesh, details some four hundred written statements by Mrs. E. G. White, and approximately eight hundred statements by other SDA writers on Christ's earthly nature. Over a period of one hundred years of SDA writers, Dr. Larson was able to find no statement that Christ received the sinless nature of unfallen Adam, as claimed by Bamhouse. Our leading doctrinal book, Bible Readings for the Home Circle, published in the year of Mrs. White's death (1915), had sold by the million. It stated,

“In His humanity, Christ partook of our sinful human nature. If not, then He was not made "like unto His brethren," was not "in all points tempted like as we are," did not overcome as we have to overcome.... Christ inherited just what every child of Adam inherits-a sinful nature.” (p. 174).

And on page 236 we read:

“By the very dogma of the Immaculate Conception of the Virgin Mary ...  Babylon teaches that God, in the person of His Son, did not take the same flesh with us; that is, sinful flesh.”

Yet it is inconceivable that these conferees were not aware that in the 1949 edition of Bible Readings, the "sinful nature" of Christ had been quietly deleted. How then could these men honestly claim to represent historic Seventh-day Adventist beliefs? As for Read, he had to do a complete somersault by refuting his previous position, in order to get out of the "lunatic fringe" and be eligible to join that elite Washington club of "sane leadership." 

3.            A new doctrinal position for Adventism or merely the position of a few who saw themselves as the "sane leadership" of Adventism?

As we have seen, these conferees did not represent a majority group. They were a mere handful of men from the General Conference who were handpicked by a sympathetic G. C. president. As to whether or not they represented sane leadership, it is debatable. One thing we do know: they considered themselves sufficiently sane to judge Mrs. E. G. White, along with the vast majority of past and contemporary Adventists writers, as part of the "wild-eyed, lunatic fringe."

4.            They repudiated the belief of some of our earlier teachers that Jesus' atoning work was not completed at Calvary, but was still going on in heaven.

It was not just "some of our earlier teachers" that believed in Christ's continuing atonement. It had been consistently taught since pioneer days and was backed solidly by our leaders and the Spirit of Prophecy.

Elder A. G. Daniells was General Conference president during the years 1901-1922, and under his leadership, Bible Readings for the Home Circle was offered extensively to the public as representative of Adventist belief Of the atonement in type and antitype it stated:

“In the heavenly sanctuary the sacrifice is offered but once; and but one atonement or cleansing of the heavenly sanctuary can be made, which must take place at the time assigned by God for it. And when the great atonement, or cleansing of the heavenly sanctuary has been made, God's people will be forever free from sin and the fate of all will be forever sealed (see Revelation 22:11). This, as in the type, will be a day of judgment.” (p. 243). [Note: This great truth has been deleted from the revised 1963 paperback edition of Bible Readings. So also has the key reference text of Daniel 8:14 and the year 1844 been deleted.]

While president of the General Conference, Elder C. H. Watson wrote a book, The Atoning Work of Christ, (Review and Herald Publishing Association, 1934). The contents were accurately described by its title. He made it quite clear that Christ's work in heaven is a continuation of His atonement which was begun with His sacrifice:

“Most certainly by the great work of atonement, which by the sacrifice of Himself began at the cross, and was continued by His priestly ministry in the heavenly sanctuary until, in the judgment, sin's reign is ended.” (p. 175).

To this could be added the supporting testimony of Elder M. L. Andreasen, and F. C. Gilbert's Messiah In His Sanctuary (Review and Herald Publishing Association, 1937). This concurs with the Spirit of Prophecy:

“Instead of the prophecy of Daniel 8:14 referring to the purifying of the earth, it was now plain that it pointed to the closing work of our High Priest in heaven, the finishing of the atonement, and the preparing of the people to abide the day of His coming.” (Life Sketches of E. G. White, p. 63).

So this is how the "experts" on Christianity and cults gave the world a grossly erroneous picture of the Seventh-day Adventist Church and its beliefs. Their aim was to show that we had changed our doctrines sufficiently to enable us to fit their concept of Christianity.

Had the General Conference succeeded in fooling Barnhouse and Martin, or had we indeed changed our beliefs?

The hitherto highly regarded Eternity magazine devoted much of its space in its September, October, November 1956 and January 1957 issues to a defense of Seventh-day Adventism.

Let me state first, without equivocation, that I believe these editors who are thus interpreting present-day Seventh-day Adventism as "evangelical" and advocating that the Christian church should receive its adherents with all of their heresies as "brethren beloved," are utterly wrong, both in their methods and in their conclusions....

Keep in mind that Seventh-day Adventism is not just a few "big shots," but is composed of hundreds of churches and individual members. Even if these leaders were to repudiate some of their heresies, how about the local churches and their membership who have been "brainwashed" for three generations with such teachings as that of annihilation of the wicked? Will they accept it from stem to circumference of the denomination because these leaders say it is not so any more?

Now the question is: Will Mrs. White have to go? Will the "keystone of the arch"

be removed and thus all the superstructure fall in a heap? This will have to be done if the heresies are abandoned, as Eternity claims.

Louis T. Talbot

"Why Seventh-day Adventism is Not Evangelical" The King's Business, April 1957, pp. 23-30

 

CHAPTER 5  - The Cloak

Further articles on the Evangelical meetings continued to appear in succeeding issues of Eternity magazine. These were mostly concerned with justifying Eternity's conclusion that Adventists were now a truly Christian denomination, for the initial reaction among Protestantism was one of profound skepticism.

Christendom was also told that Adventists no longer regarded themselves as the remnant church, but considered themselves only as part of the remnant church of God in the last days. And as for the gift of prophecy, Adventists did not regard the E. G. White Spirit of Prophecy counsels as in a class with the Bible prophets. They were regarded as counsels to Seventh-day Adventists only (Eternity, January 1957).

Such a generalized statement does not differentiate between special testimonies to the church and counsels as found in Steps to Christ, or books in the Conflict of the Ages series, all of which are eminently suitable for public outreach. When the General Conference published Questions on Doctrine, a book demanded by Christendom for Christendom in general, they did not hesitate to disregard their own statement by unselectively quoting Mrs. White in order to get their points across. A quick glance through just the first twenty chapters shows that they not only quoted from books suitable for public use, but quoted from the following:

Gospel Workers, Testimonies to Ministers, Early Writings, Counsels on Sabbath School Work, Counsels to Parents, Students and Teachers, Evangelism, Testimonies for the Church, volumes 2, 6, 8, and even an E. G. White Manuscript, No. 18, 1899.

Such inconsistencies are common to those who wander into the shifting sands of conjecture, amendment and invention.

As news of the Evangelical meetings began filtering through the SDA Church, it was deemed advisable to prepare the ministry for the forthcoming book, Questions on Doctrine. The church had a ready-made vehicle to carry out such a taskthe Ministry magazine. All that was needed was a willing editor and a supportive president. Both were in position—R. A. Anderson and R. R. Figuhr.*

* R. R. Figuhr had been associate editor of the Ministry magazine with R. A. Anderson who was General Conference Ministerial Secretary from 1950-1956. Assuming that these men were attuned to each other's doctrinal wavelength, they now had the perfect setup to superimpose mutual designs upon Adventism.

Editor Anderson had fielded an opening statement in the Ministry of December 1956, under the editorial title, "Changing Attitudes Towards Adventism." He told of some recent articles concerning Adventists in leading religious journals and commented:

“When certain Christian leaders discovered recently that we believe absolutely in the sovereign deity of our Lord, in His pre-existence with the Father, in the absolute sinlessness of His nature during His incarnation on earth, in His all-sufficient atoning sacrifice on the cross, and in salvation by grace and by grace alone, then the basis of the misunderstandings which for a century have been a barrier between other Christian bodies and Adventists was removed” (p. 17).

Evidently, "caution" was the watchword. Adventists should not be startled. Many of our ministers would need a careful conditioning process to have them readily accept Questions on Doctrine. Unlike the largely non-Adventist readership of Eternity, most Adventists were well acquainted with our doctrines and had ready access to our literature including the Spirit of Prophecy. So, in the foregoing quotation the heresy of Christ's sinless nature was carefully hedged about by our long-discarded vestiges of Arianism, and the concept of a completed atonement was wrapped in an "all-sufficient atoning sacrifice."

But it was left to L. E. Froom to undertake the delicate task of turning our doctrines around.**

**Froom had been Ministerial Secretary from 1941-1950. During that time, Anderson had been his associate editor of Ministry magazine.

In his outstanding work Beginning of the End, Vance Ferrell quotes a contemporary G. C. official who claimed that Anderson had told him personally that Froom "wanted to stand for the landmarks, but we told him that for the sake of fellowship with the Protestants, we must do this. This will bring in a new day for Adventists. He [Froom] backed down so we could agree with the evangelicals" (Pilgrims Rest DH 104). But in the light of further material to be presented, it seems probable that Froom's reticence was due mainly to the fact that he might bear the blame for changing our doctrines.

Froom's article "The Priestly Application of the Atonement Act" (February, 1957), must, in retrospect, be seen as about the greatest exercise in manipulative semantics ever attempted in Adventist literature.* The opening statements were good, solid Adventism. The closing statements contradicted them. (One wonders if Barnhouse's "first bite all worm, second bite all hook" remarks should not be redirected to this article.)

* In the December 1956 issue of Ministry, Froom had written an article, "The Atonement, The Heart of Our Message," in which he stressed the importance of the atoning sacrifice and referred to Christ's High Priestly work as "ministering its provisions, benefits and effects to the beneficiaries of His grace-the subjects of His intercession" (p. 13).

Here are Froom's opening remarks in which he defines the term "atonement" correctly:

“Despite the belief of multitudes in the churches about us, it is not, on the one hand, limited just to the sacrificial death of Christ on the cross. On the other hand, neither is it confined to the ministry of our heavenly High Priest in the sanctuary above, on the antitypical day of atonementor hour of God's judgmentas some of our forefathers first erroneously thought and wrote.

“Instead, as attested by the Spirit of Prophecy, it clearly embraces bothone aspect being incomplete without the other, and each being the indispensable complement of the other.” (Ministry, February 1957, p. 9).

Having thus made Adventists feel at ease with his confirmation of a continuing work of atonement, Froom then gives a twist to what appeared to be a perfectly plain statement. He does this by mixing a contradiction with two truths:

“That is the tremendous scope of the sacrificial act of the crossa complete, perfect and final atonement for man's sins.” (ibid., p. 10).

Yes, it is true that the sacrifice was complete and perfect. It is not true that the atonement was final and complete and Froom had correctly stated earlier that the atonement was not "limited to the sacrificial death of Christ on the cross."

But wait, he has an explanation: "The atonement is two-fold; first a single comprehensive act, then a continuing process or work of application." Thus our minds are conditioned to the proposition that Christ is now administering the benefits of an atonement completed at Calvary. Christ's work of atonement which Mrs. White said began at the cross, really means "completed," according to Froom. That is the "hook."

How then could Froom possibly hope to fool all those Adventists out there who knew very well that the Spirit of Prophecy teaches that the investigative judgment, which is the cleansing of the heavenly sanctuary, constituted the final act of Christ's atonement? He simply postulated an erroneous statement as if it were fact:

“No doctrinal proof or prophetic interpretation ever came to this people initially through the Spirit of Prophecynot in a single case. . . . The discovery and interpretation of Bible truth was always left for diligent Bible students.” (ibid., p. 11).

Here is an emphatic enunciation of an entirely new principle for Seventh-day Adventists. Mrs. White never contributed any original doctrinal material to our church.* (!) She was not a diligent student. (!) Apparently L. E. Froom saw himself as a diligent student and therefore he was qualified to interpret the Spirit of Prophecy; as witness, this amazing dogmatic statement: 

“Let there be no confusion then, over the term "making atonement" used by Ellen G. White in connection with Christ's priestly ministry in heaven-obviously meaning applying the completed atonement to the individual.” (ibid. p. 12).

* "Many of our 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 the time in 1844, searched for the truth as for hidden treasure. I met with them and we studied and prayed earnestly.... When they came to the 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 ... and I gave others the instruction that had been given me" (Special Testimonies, Series B, No. 2, pp. 54, 57).

Thus Froom effectively denies the principle of the blood atonement which Christ is now applying in heaven on behalf of repentant sinners. The blood emphasis is sadly lacking in this and others of his writings on the heavenly sanctuary, a fact which parallels popular evangelicalism because of its belief that Christ completed His work of salvation on Calvary.

 

CHAPTER 6 - The Last Deception

It is becoming quite evident that the G. C. conferees had certain problems in meeting the criteria demanded by apostate Protestantism. In shorthow to deny the truth. It was one thing to tell the evangelicals to take no notice of the "wildeyed lunatic fringe" of Adventism. It was an entirely different matter to tell that to Adventists. They couldn't! Not only would such "lunatics" have to include the majority of our past and then present leaders, but it must necessarily include God's Prophet, Mrs. E. G. White.

One solution to the Spirit of Prophecy hurdle was to destroy the effect of Mrs. White's writings. Such a thought would be hardly original, because she had warned already that this would happen:

“The very last deception of Satan will be to make of none effect the testimony of the Spirit of God.” (1SM 48).

Nevertheless, as a result of the embarrassment over Spirit of Prophecy statements, which conflicted with the views now being declared to the evangelicals, it was decided that two men should approach the E. G. White Estate, search the Spirit of Prophecy writings for such statements and then attempt to neutralize them. An attempt to tamper with Mrs. White's writings actually took place early in 1957; about the time that Eternity magazine was spreading the news of Adventism's "conversion" to Christianity. Providentially, someone saw fit to "leak" a copy of the White Board of Trustees minutes for May 1957 and the recipient of those minutes was none other than Elder Andreasen (see Letters to the Churches No. 2).

As mentioned previously, Andreasen was considered by our denomination to be one of its foremost scholars on the sanctuary doctrine. He was absolutely committed to the propagation and maintenance of historic Adventism. Imagine his chagrin when he read in these minutes that two men had "suggested to the trustees that some foot notes or appendix notes might appear in certain of the E. G. White books clarifying very largely in the words of Ellen G. White our understanding of the various phases of the atoning work of Christ"* (Minutes, p. 1483, as quoted by Andreasen in Letters to the Churches, No. 2).

* Andreasen claims that it was the editor of Ministry "who in his research became acutely aware of the E. G. White statements ... and so he suggested that footnotes or appendix notes appear in certain of the E. G. White books" (Letters to the Churches, No. 2). Later, in Letter No. 5, Andreasen reveals that it was R. A. Anderson and W. E. Read who visited the White vault and proposed the insertions to her writings. W. E. Read had a long connection with the "Washington club," having experience as field secretary and chairman of the so-called Defense Committee.

What a suggestion! What an affront to Christ and His messenger! And what a sad commentary on the integrity of our leadership, that some should confidently expect that such a dishonest request could even be entertained, let alone succeed. Not only were these men prepared to act as interpreter to God's messenger, but they were prepared to imitate her style of writing by employing "the words of Ellen G. White" in order that the deception might more readily succeed.**

** "There are those who will misinterpret the messages that God has given, in accordance with their spiritual blindness" (Selected Messages, Book 1, p. 41).

Andreasen was not the type of man to remain silent, but he decided to follow Christ's instruction to "speak to him alone." He wrote to the chief officer, president Figuhr, and this is a portion of the reply:

“I am certain we can trust the brethren of the White Estate to move cautiously in this direction and not to take positions that might be embarrassing in the future. Certainly Brother Andreasen, there is no intention here whatever to tamper with the writings of Sister White. We value them most highly” (Letters to the Churches, No. 4).

(The reader will note the prime concern of the "Chief Officer"it was not about the preservation of truth, but rather of any embarrassment which must inevitably follow a fraudulent action.)

Andreasen replied, pleading with Figuhr to "spare thy people, and give not thine heritage to reproach." He closed his letter with an expression of confidence in the president as he faced "the greatest apostasy the church has ever faced" (ibid.) The president's reply, September 18, 1957:

“I have considered the matter to which you referred closed. I do not believe that you have the right to use the Board Minutes of the White Estate as you have done. The Minutes are confidential and not intended for public use. I hope the time will never come when we take the position that men are to be condemned and disciplined because they come before properly constituted church Boards to discuss questions that they may have pertaining to the work and belief of the church.”* (ibid.).

* In spite of Figuhr's admission of these Minutes, the White Estate Board subsequently denied their substance in a circular letter to all Divisions dated September 6, 1960 (reported by Pilgrims Rest DH 103 p. 3).

In his reply, Andreasen noted that the president had condoned the two men's actions. He pointed out that he had used the information about the Minutes to inform him [Figuhr] alone, and that:

“I consider the present instance the greatest apostasy that has ever occurred in this denomination, and this you would have kept under cover! And you have closed the door.... You are about to ruin the denomination. I am praying for you" (ibid.).

But Andreasen's pleadings with the president were fruitless. Figuhr was determined to stand by his commitment to the evangelicals. Here is part of his response:

“This [Andreasen's activities] will place you in plain opposition to your church. In view of all this, the officers, as I have previously written, earnestly ask you to cease your activities" (Letters to the Churches, No. 4).

Andreasen did not cease his activities but made his concerns public in what became known as Letters to the Churches. And so, as previously noted, he was stripped of his credentials and deprived of his sustentation.

Thus it can be seen that our leaders had made no idle commitment to the evangelicals as reported in Eternity magazine when Barnhouse said that they, meaning Adventist leaders, were “determined to put the brakes on any members who seek to hold views divergent from that of the responsible leadership of the denomination”. (Eternity EXTRA September 1956, p. 7).

No doubt, the spectacle of one of our most respected veterans being persecuted for nobly standing up and doing his God-ordained duty did not pass unnoticed by other workers in the church. For most of them, it probably provided a salutary lesson in obedience to mana lesson which may explain the conduct of many to this day.

I was thoroughly shaken when I read the account of men attempting to have

explanations and footnotes inserted into the White books to make it appear that she is in favor of, or at least not opposed to, the new doctrine that the atonement was made on the cross. I had been taught from my early connection with the church that those writings were of God, and must be revered highly. The idea that men might add or subtract, or in any way "explain" the writer's intent by adding "footnotes or explanations" never occurred to anyone.

After I had read the record of what took place, I did a deal of praying and

meditation. What was my responsibility in this matter, or did I have any? I confided to no one. I decided my first responsibility would be to the officials in Washington. And so I wrote to headquarters. I was informed that I had no right to the information I had, for that was supposed to be secret, and I had no right even to read the documents.

After four letters were passed, I was informed that they did not care to discuss

the matter further. The matter was settled. When I inquired if this meant that the door was closed, I received the reply: "I have considered the matter to which you have referred as closed."

M. L. Andreasen

Portion of letter to officers of the General Conference, December 29, 1957

CHAPTER 7 - Movement of Destiny

Even as Questions on Doctrine, with its dramatic breakthrough in public relations, was being presented throughout the world as a savior of Adventism, opposition was steadily mounting. Andreasen's Letters to the Churches were having a telling effect in North America.*

* In Australasia, the membership, with its childlike trust in General Conference leadership, was generally acquiescent. If and when Andreasen's activities were mentioned, it was usually in a derogatory manner.

Walter Martin soon began receiving complaints from indignant Seventh-day Adventists. Not only did they repudiate the new doctrinal positions in QOD, but they claimed that Barnhouse and Martin had been hoodwinked by the General Conference men.

This is not what the Adventist church really believes. You have been deceived.... There are some important representatives of Seventh-day Adventism who are at this point beginning to move the denomination back from where they came in 1957 (Martin, Lecture, February 22, 1983, Napa, California).

In 1965, Walter Martin published his book, The Kingdom of the Cults. Pressure from sections of Protestantism to have Seventh day Adventists redeclared a cult were again mounting. It had been noted that Adventists had discontinued publication of QOD, and they had refused to sell Martin's book, The Truth About Adventism in the Adventist Book Centers. Martin endeavored to quiet the clamor by devoting a section of his book to Adventists. He admitted that conflicting views on Adventist belief were coming out in print, but stuck to his original contention that QOD was indeed a passport to Christianity. He quoted from the Review and Herald's claim:

“This book truthfully presents the theology and doctrine which the leaders of Seventh-day Adventism affirm they have always held.” (Kingdom of the Cults, p. 369).*

* How could Martin keep foisting this untruth upon his readers when Barnhouse had claimed that they had changed the doctrines of a whole denomination? Note the discrepancy: "Let's face it ... the leaders who have written this book [QOD] have moved from the traditional position of the SDA movement" (Barnhouse). This is confirmed by Anderson in a letter to Pastor Robert Greive, then president of the Queensland Conference. After reading the manuscript for QOD, Greive wrote Anderson to see what was going on. Anderson replied, "Yes, we are trying to change the doctrines, but we want to take it to the Ministry before we go to the people with it" (Pilgrims Rest DH 104). And again, "While it is truth, we should be very careful not to set it before the laity until we are prepared to speak with a united voice" (Letter to Robert Greive, April 23, 1956).

The credibility of QOD was under severe scrutiny, both from within and outside our church. Elder Froom, once so reticent (seemingly) to undertake the task of altering our doctrines, who with others had declined to have his name appended to QOD, was by now sufficiently motivated and committed to openly defend the book and expand considerably on its veiled heresies. His book, Movement of Destiny, published in 1971 by the Review and Herald Publishing Association did just that.

It is probably fair to say that no other Adventist publication has come with higher credentials than this book. The Foreword bore the imprimatur of G. C. president, R. H. Pierson** and the Preface appeared over the name of the vice-president, Neal C. Wilson, the latter having acted as chairman of the Guiding Committee for Movement of Destiny (The Fascinating Story of MOD., p. 11). Said Wilson, We can see God's timetable and wisdom. He knew exactly when the Remnant Church, and its leadership would be under attack.*** He knew when the book would be needed most! It will confirm our faith, it will rekindle the fires of dedication and commitment" (MOD Preface).

** Although Pierson had strongly recommended MOD to all Seventh-day Adventists, he later had reason to change his mind. In a letter dated October 6, 1988 to the author (H. H. Meyers) he wrote, "Some portions of Elder Froom's manuscript Movement of Destiny I had not read before its publication.... After reading some portions later, I declined to have my Foreword included in any subsequent editions." It is interesting to note that in a subsequent edition of MOD, a new Foreword is written by H. M. S. Richards. The Preface by Neal C. Wilson remains intact.

*** Elder Wilson does not identify the "attackers."

With such illustrious credentials, Movement of Destiny should be able to be read with the utmost confidence by Seventh-day Adventists. Can it?

In his opening remarks to the reader, Froom deems it advisable to establish his authority for writing the book and to show that he was destined to bring to the Movement an understanding of the Gospel which would lead it inexorably on to victory. He reveals that his mandate came from none other than the late Arthur G. Daniells, president of the General Conference for some twenty=one years, and close associate of Mrs. E. G. White.

Said Froom,

“Back in the spring of 1930 ... [Daniells] told me he believed that at a later time, I should undertake a thorough survey of the entire plan of redemption-its principles, provisions and divine personalities-as they unfolded to our view as a Movement from 1844 onward, with special emphasis upon the developments of 1888 and its sequel.” (MOD, p. 17).

At the time of the 1888 General Conference session in Minneapolis, Daniells was serving in the mission field of New Zealand. But it seems that many years later, after being released from his long term as president of the General Conference, he had time to reflect on the main theme of the Minneapolis Conference-Righteousness by Faith. As a result, in 1926, he wrote the book Christ Our Righteousness. Froom claims that it was this work which Daniells wanted him to "round out in historical sequence what he had begun in 1926" (ibid., p. 17). Froom continues:

“Daniells admonished me to be fair and faithful to fact, comprehensive and impartial in treatment, and to present the full picture in balance. "Truth has nothing to fear," he admonished, "and everything to gain" (ibid., p. 18).

Froom unequivocally accepts this challenge:

“I must not be unfaithful to God and to the Church, and the burden that has been placed upon me. That is how this portrayal came to be written.” (ibid. p. 23).

As we examine some aspects of Movement of Destiny and look behind the scenes, we shall keep in mind Froom's commitment to truthfulness and Daniells' maxim that "truth has nothing to fear."

We shall also seek to discover what President Wilson meant when he perceived the church and its leadership to be under attack and perhaps even find out who its supposed enemies are.

What greater deception could be foisted upon our people than for Satan to bring falsehood from within the church, while the members expect it to come from a source outside the church. How well we have been prepared to receive it by being taught to depend upon a system of religious organization to warn us of its approach and arrival, rather than encouraged to look to the platform of truth established in the early years of the movement. Even now, in this time of great peril, the leadership are foremost in cautioning against any discussion of the issues that are polarizing the membership. (See Review, May 24, 1979). They put forth the claim that there is a great deal more made of such situations than is called for; and if they, the leadership, are given the time to decide the conclusion of such issues, then all agitation will die down. Their admonition of caution, and many times silence, on life and death issues is a cry of peace and safety. Matters designed to stir the membership into action are, as a result, not heeded; and it is left to the leadership-the "dumb dogs" who never again lift up their voice like a trumpet to show God's people their transgressions (see 5T p. 211)-to decide for the membership what is and what is not the truth.

Jon A. Vannoy

"Under Which Banner?" 1981, p. 81.

 

CHAPTER 8 - "Impeaching the Dead"

Doctor Le Roy Froom was very conscious of accusations against leadership. He had come in for his fair share of censure for his part in what had come to be seen by many as the evangelical sellout of the fifties. Under the heading, "Unjustifiable Charge of Leadership Unfaithfulness," he says,

“Ever since the 1888 tensions there have been recurrent harpers on the note that the church, and primarily its leaders, actually rejected the message of 1888.” (MOD, p. 357).

If such charges had been recurring since 1888, how then would President Wilson see Movement of Destiny as arriving just on time to meet "God's timetable"? There must have been some pressing and contemporary reason to which Wilson was referring. Perhaps Froom can help us further? He talks of the 1888 rejection charge still persisting and refers to a recent call for "retroactive" repentance in order that the Loud Cry and Latter Rain should revisit our Church. Said Froom,

“Such a contention is a grave charge to be bandied about. If the charge is true, then there should be some clear-cut historical evidence. If not true, it "actually constitutes an impeachment of the dead," and "an explicit confession is due the Church today by promulgators of a misleading charge" (ibid. p. 358).

Well, that surely does sound like enemies of the Church at work, doesn't it? But worse still, it sounds like the "enemies" are within our church.

It did not take long for the "mystery" to be made public. In November of 1972, there appeared a booklet titled, An Explicit Confession ... Due the Church, and it was signed by Donald K. Short and Robert J. Wieland, two Seventh-day Adventist ministers with extensive service in Africa and in their homeland, North America. Let us read from their introductory remarks:

“This public "confession" is made in response to a duty solemnly enjoined upon the authors of a private document. After twenty-two years of silence, they are now required to speak publicly, though they would prefer to remain silent.

“Their duty to "confess" is made clear by demands upon them published in Movement of Destiny and endorsed by the General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists. It is a duty the authors dare not evade. The Church will expect a sincere response to such an authoritative public charge. Truth requires it.

“Twenty-two years ago in the autumn of 1950, the authors prepared for the attention of the General Conference committee, a private manuscript entitled 1888 ReExamined. Without the authors' consent or approval, this document with some six hundred Ellen G. White exhibits, was by others placed in the hands of an ever-widening circle of Seventh-day Adventist readers around the world. This is what has now been responsible for this public call to make.” An Explicit Confession .. . Due the Church.

And what was 1888 Re-Examined all about? Again we quote from Short and Wieland:

“We said in 1950 that there is a neglected but essential preparation to make before the final outpouring of the Holy Spirit in the Latter Rain can possibly come to enable the Church to finish God's work on earth. That most necessary preparation is recognition of, and repentance for, the misunderstanding and rejecting the "beginning" of the Latter Rain and the Loud Cry. This "beginning," according to Ellen G. White, was a message brought by two young ministers to the 1888 General Conference Session. Nearly one hundred times in her writings she endorses this message and the messengers in language never used at any time about any other message or messengers. For us now as a people to beg Heaven to give us the Latter Rain, without recognizing this obvious fact, is just as unreasonable as for the Jews to keep on begging the Lord to send them the Messiah without recognizing how He kept His promise and did send Him two thousand years ago.” (ibid.).

In the rest of chapter ten of MOD, Froom sets out to show that the principles of the "1888 Message" had indeed been adopted and put into practice over the intervening years. He sees the church's progress as evidence of the outpouring of the latter rain. As further evidence he embarks on a recital of leaders' names who upheld the principles of righteousness by faith including the "ultimate in leadership," Ellen G. White.

Froom is in trouble! He is citing our prophet's active role in promulgating righteousness by faith as proof that it had been generally accepted by our leadership because she herself was the "ultimate leader."

But the argument does not fit the facts. Sister White had joined with Elders Waggoner and Jones in traveling around the country with the purpose of urging its acceptance. In 1890, she was constrained to voice her concern in the Review and Herald:

“For nearly two years we have been urging the people to come up and accept the light and the truth concerning the righteousness of Christ, and they do not know whether to come and take hold of this precious truth.” (RH March 11, 1890).

Why were our people hesitant to accept the message? She says,

“Our young men look to our older brethren and as they see that they do not accept the message, but treat it as though it were of no consequence, it influences those who are ignorant of the Scriptures to reject the light. These men [the leaders] who refuse to receive the truth interpose themselves between the people and the light’” (RH March 18, 1890).

And why did our "older brethren" not accept the 1888 message? In 1895, Mrs. White wrote:

“Men who are entrusted with weighty responsibilities, but who have no living connection with God have been and are doing despite to His Holy Spirit.... If God spares their lives, and they nourish the same spirit that marked their course of action both before and after the Minneapolis meeting, they will fill up to the full the deeds of those whom Christ condemned when He was upon earth.” (TM 78-79).

So, with this misapplication of Mrs. White's concern-that the message of righteousness by faith should take hold of our peoplemay we not well ask, Who is impeaching the dead? and Who is it that dares to impeach a prophet of God?

In 1926, over a decade after Mrs. White's demise, were things any better? According to Elder Daniells they were not! In his book, Christ Our Righteousness, we read:

“Through the intervening years [since 1888] there has been steadily developing the desire and hope-yes, the belief-that someday the message of righteousness by faith would shine forth in all its inherent glory, worth and power and receive full recognition.” (pp. 42, 43).

After twenty-one years as General Conference president, Daniells was well qualified to speak on this subject. He was keenly aware of the opposition of which Mrs. White spoke. Said he:

“The message has never been received, nor proclaimed, nor given free course as it should have been in order to convey to the church the marvelous blessings that were wrapped in it.” (ibid. p. 47).

Those marvelous blessings would have automatically followed in the train of the latter rain had our leaders been receptive. Why then did Froom contradict his mentor, the very man whom he claims had commissioned him with the awesome responsibility of expanding on the work that he had commenced? Just listen to Froom:

“The denomination as a whole, and its leadership in particular, did not reject the message and provisions of righteousness by faith in and following 1888.” (MOD, p. 370).

How then can Froom be claiming to be carrying out Daniells' commission by contradicting him? Why does he attack two of God's faithful servants, Elders Short and Wieland, for sharing Sister White's and Elder Daniells' concerns? The answers to such questions do not come easily. It is not given to man to divine motives generated in the dark recesses of the heart. We can, however, examine the facts and learn from history.

Those who have read the books, Questions on Doctrine and Movement of Destiny must be struck with their similarities of format and literary style. Probably this is no mere coincidence, for Froom is given credit for writing most of QOD by none other than those whom the book was written to pleaseBarnhouse and Martin.* As one reads through Movement of Destiny, it becomes increasingly clear that it is a defense of the evangelical meetings of the fifties and the doctrinal positions embraced in Questions on Doctrine. 

* Veteran evangelist, Austin P. Cooke claims that during a visit to the USA in 1956, R. A. Anderson told him that he was involved in writing an important book concerning Adventist beliefs. Cooke believes this book was QOD (personal conversation with Author, 1988).

At the time QOD was written, the price to the denomination appeared so high that no one was courageous enough to underwrite it. But after some fourteen years of exposure to its deadly heresies, Froom judged Adventists to have been sufficiently brainwashed for him to safely endorse the heresies in Movement of Destiny with his own signature. But he did it under the guise of presenting true Adventism in the fullness of the 1888 message.

Conveniently, neither Mrs. White nor Elders Waggoner and Jones were still around to object. Neither was Daniells, for that matter.

CHAPTER 9 - The 1888 Message (and the Evangelical View)

Let us briefly acquaint ourselves with the 1888 message of righteousness by faith which our prophet claimed is the "Third Angel's Message in Verity" (RH April 1, 1890) and the beginning of the latter rain. When Sister White heard Elder Waggoner's presentation at Minneapolis, she was ecstatic:

“It was the first clear teaching of the subject from any human lips I had heard; excepting the communication between myself and my husband. I have said to myself, it is because God has presented it to me in vision that I see it so clearly and they [its detractors] cannot see it because they have not had it presented to them as I have; and when another presented it, every fiber of my heart said Amen.” (Manuscript 5, 1889).

Sister White, born Ellen Gould Harmon, was reared and baptized in Methodism.

It would be fair to say that in the Christian world, Methodists had been champions of the Protestant dictum, "The just shall live by faith" (Romans 1:17; Galatians 3:11; Hebrews 10:38). Unlike many of the Reformationist churches, they stressed obedience to God's law as evidence of that faith.

Obviously then, Sister White was referring to a message that encompassed more than Wesley's understanding of the subject, for like Luther, Calvin and other Reformers, he did not have an understanding of the three angels' messages as revealed to Seventh-day Adventists.

It was Elders E. J. Waggoner and A. T. Jones who picked up the threads of Protestantism's unfinished garment and interwove it with the fabric of the third angel's message. It is this garment of Christ's righteousness which, if accepted by faith and worn in obedience, would enable the Seventh-day Adventist Church to give the message that would light the whole world with glory (the fourth angel of Revelation 18:1). This would be the inevitable result of the outpouring of the Holy Spirit, known as the latter rain. Said Mrs. White,

“There are but few, even of those who claim to believe it, that comprehend the third angel's message; and yet this is the message for this time. It is present truth.... Said my guide: There is much light yet to shine forth from the law of God and the gospel of righteousness. This message understood in its true character, and proclaimed in the Spirit will lighten the earth with its glory.” (Ms. 15, 1888; Olsen, p. 296, quoted in 1888 Re-Examined).

That a true comprehension of the third angel's message would lead us to emphasize to the world the seriousness of living presently in the day of atonement, is made clear:

“We are in the day of atonement, and we are to work in harmony with Christ's work of cleansing the sanctuary.... We must now set before the people the work which by faith we see our great High-Priest accomplishing in the heavenly sanctuary” (RH January 21, 1890).

So it is abundantly clear that the 1888 message of righteousness by faith is unique to Seventh-day Adventism. The message went much further than the Reformationist view which was circumscribed "by faith alone." It was a message of faith that works, a faith that will enable us to obey and "follow Jesus in His great work of atonement in the heavenly sanctuary" (GC 430).

It is obvious then, that those Seventh-day Adventists who deny Christ's continuing work of atonement, by claiming it was finished at the cross, are circumscribed by Reformationist theology. Inevitably, they will increasingly hanker after the fellowship of those whose misunderstanding of the everlasting gospel they have followed. How then can such leaders expect to be recipients of the latter rain and join with the fourth angel of Revelation 18 in the magnificent task of lighting the whole world with His glory?

 

False doctrine is one of the satanic influences that work in the church, and brings into it those who are unconverted in heart. Men do not obey the words of Jesus Christ, and thus seek for unity in faith, spirit, and doctrine. They do not labor for the unity of spirit for which Christ prayed, which would make the testimony of Christ's disciples effective in convincing the world that God had sent His Son into the world, "that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life." If the unity for which Christ prayed, existed among the people of God, they would bear living testimony, would send forth a bright light to shine amid the moral darkness of the world. Ellen G. White  Testimonies to Ministers, p. 48

 

CHAPTER 10 - The Dagger Strikes (Part 1)

One of error's insidious traits is its penchant for freeloading on the back of truth. Its passage through Movement of Destiny is no exception. If Adventism's doctrinal uniqueness is to be destroyed, then its very heart, the sanctuary message, must ultimately be targeted. But the attack must not be too obvious.

Froom impressively announces the important truths of the sanctuary doctrine as being crucial to the very existence of Seventh-day Adventism:

“Any weakening or denial or submerging of the sanctuary truth is not only serious, but a crucial matter. Any deviation or dereliction there-from strikes at the heart of Adventism and challenges its very integrity.” (Movement of Destiny, p. 542).

Thus the reader's mind is lulled into a sense of false security. How many will not notice the gleam of a two-pronged dagger concealed beneath the cloak of truth?

The first prong is meant to destroy Adventism's belief in the true humanity of Christ during His Incarnationa humanity like ours in which He resisted sin and thus became our example; which in turn bestows on Him the biblical qualification which befits Him to carry out the atoning work as our heavenly High Priest (see Hebrews 4:15).

An editorial in the Review and Herald December 16, 1884, announcing a new edition of the book, The Atonement, by J. H. Waggoner, made this pertinent observation linking Christ's human nature with his qualifications as a High Priest:

“In [the atonement] is involved the great central "mystery" of the Gospel, "God manifest in the flesh," a divine being bearing the nature of the seed of Abraham.” (as quoted in The Word Made Flesh, p. 42).

The second prong is meant to show that the atonement was completed at Calvary in order to satisfy the popular evangelical belief that Christ's work of salvation was completed at the cross. Therefore any future priestly ministry is explained simply as the application of benefits flowing from a completed atonement.

Let us examine the methods employed by Froom in this two pronged attack.

1. The "Vicarious" Humanity of Christ

Froom directs our minds to the time when a few of our pioneers had brought some Arian* views to Adventism. Uriah Smith was one such person.

* Arianism. A belief pertaining to Arius of Alexandria in the fourth century who held Christ to be a super-angelic being.

Elder E. J. Waggoner had dealt with this diminishing problem at the 1888 Minneapolis Conference by upholding Christ's deity as "all the fulness of the Godhead," meaning of course that Christ was an uncreated and eternal member of the triune Godhead.

This position was always taken by Mrs. White as, coming out of Methodism, she had never held Arian views.

But while the reader is left pondering over the fact that some of our pioneers had been wrong, Froom, by innuendo and timing, sets up in the mind of the reader a link between Christ's earthly nature and the fulness of His Godhead. Referring to Waggoner's book, Christ and His Righteousness, he says:

“The full significance of Waggoner's highly significant descriptive concerning Christ's nature must not be missed. It is vital. He especially declared that Christ "is of the very substance and nature of God"! (MOD, p. 277).

Froom then quickly presses home his intent:

“Waggoner and his colleagues were moving definitely away from both the Arian and semi-Arian positions" (MOD, p.278).

We are not aware that Waggoner had any Arian or semi-Arian views, but we do know that he believed that Christ took upon himself the nature of fallen humanity. Therefore it may appear to some that Froom is trying to show that those with similar views are hooked on a vestige of Arianism.

Then in discussing the 1888 message of righteousness by faith, he says:

“It involved the very nature of Christ in whom the faith was to be invested.” (ibid. p. 318).

Is Froom planting the idea in our minds that Waggoner, in rejecting Arianism, is repudiating the biblical concept of a truly human Christ? We had better see just what Waggoner's position was.

“The spotless Lamb of God, who knew no sin was made to be sin. Sinless, yet not only counted as a sinner, but actually taking upon Himself sinful nature. He was made to be sin in order that we might be made righteousness.” (Christ and His Righteousness, pp. 27, 28).

But such a forceful declaration on Christ's humanity does not suit Froom. How does he overcome this problem? He simply resorts to a tactic with which he is becoming quite adept. He takes a few words and phrases from a statement and intersperses them with his own wording which, when strung together, form a statement which obscures the intent of the original author.

Let's look at Froom's treatment of the last sentence of our quotation from Waggoner:

“He was actually "made"vicariouslyto "be sin for us" that we "might be made the righteousness of God in Him." (MOD, p. 197).

Notice Froom's insertion of the word vicariously. This makes sheer mockery of the plan of salvation by attributing to Christ a makebelieve human nature and constitutes blatant tampering with Waggoner's stated belief. Dr. Larson cites from the 1891 G. C. Bulletin, six instances in which Waggoner stated his position. They all accord with this sampling:

“But what the law could not do, Christ came in the likeness of sinful flesh to do.... Jesus was made in all things like unto those whom He came to save.” (The Word Was Made Flesh, pp. 48-49). 

During the two years following 1888, Mrs. White gave unstinted support to Waggoner and Jones as they traveled about expounding on the theme of Christ's righteousness. In 1889, she upheld Christ's true divinity and His acceptance of our fallen nature by saying:

“He took upon Him our nature that He might reach man in his fallen condition.” (ST September 23, 1889).

And what about Jones? Did he share Froom's "vicarious" nature theory? Not at all! During his series of lectures on the third angel's message at the General Conference session of 1893, he made at least three statements similar to this one:

“Ah, the Lord Jesus Christ, who came and stood where I stand, in the flesh in which I live, He lived there.” (G. C. Bulletin 1893, p. 412).

Let us remind our readers that Froom claims to be enlarging on the message commenced by Daniells in his book Christ Our Righteousness. With that goes the assumption that he is in agreement with Daniells' view of Christ's earthly nature. But that is not so. On page 38, Daniells quotes:

“Describe, if human language can, the humiliation of the Son of God, and think not that you have reached the climax, when you see Him exchanging the throne of light and glory which He had with the Father, for humanity.” (RH September 11, 1888).

Is this Froom's "vicarious" or make-believe humanity that Daniells is describing? Certainly not! While ministerial secretary of the General Conference, Daniells had made his understanding plain:

“[He was made] like you, like me ... having triumphed over sin in sinful flesh.” (RH November 7, 1929).

So it is clear that Froom is not fulfilling Daniells' commission (if indeed he had been commissioned), nor is he in agreement with the exponents of the 1888 message of righteousness by faith. (Whatever happened to Froom's commitment to truthfulness when he accepted Daniells' admonition "to be fair and faithful to fact"? see chapter seven).

Now we shall see how Froom tackles his biggest obstacle the Spirit of Prophecy. Typically, he seeks the support of Mrs. White, whom he lauds as "the peerless witness" (MOD chapters 28, 29). Because her evidence happens to be in disagreement with Froom's "vicarious" or make-believe human nature of Christ, he resorts to what Dr. Larson describes as "fraudulent" methods, and something which should be rectified by Adventists before our enemies expose this perfidy to world gaze. (See The Fraud of the Unfallen Nature, a pamphlet by Larson.) Also, in his book, The Word Was Made Flesh, Dr. Larson describes Froom's tactics as "a methodological monstrosity" (pg. 247).

One such tactic is to seek to interpret Mrs. White's statements by supplying misleading subheadings over her statements a device which he apparently regarded as highly successful in the book Questions on Doctrine.

We shall mention here, just one example of several as exposed by Larson. On page 497 of Movement of Destiny we find subheading No 5, TOOK SINLESS NATURE OF ADAM BEFORE FALL. There follows a veritable hotch-potch collection of words and phrases taken from nineteen Spirit of Prophecy quotations. No references are given. These are linked together by Froom's wording to make them appear to uphold the false declaration of his subheading.

In analyzing these nineteen mini-quotes, Larson takes us to the source quotations and it soon becomes apparent that Mrs. White said the opposite of what Froom is trying to make her say. Conveniently, Froom deletes the unwanted portions of her opening statement which provides the context. Here it is with the unwanted portion emphasized for identification:

“In taking upon Himself man's nature in its fallen condition [that is, after four thousand years of sin], Christ did not in the least participate in its sin.” (1SM 256).

Needless to say, Froom astutely avoids such forceful statements as:

“He humbled Himself, taking the nature of the fallen race.... He knows by experience what are the weaknesses of humanity . . . and where lies the strength of our temptations.” (The Watchman, 3 September 1907 p. 563, quoted in The Word Was Made Flesh p. 146).

The second prong of the dagger will be discussed in the following chapter.

 

 

We need to settle, every one of us, whether we are out of the church of Rome or

not. There are a great many that have got the marks yet, but I am persuaded of this, that every soul who is here tonight desires to know the way of truth and righteousness (Congregation: Amen!), and that there is no one here who is unconsciously clinging to the dogmas of the Papacy, who does not desire to be freed from them....

Suppose we start with the idea for a moment that Jesus was so separate from

us, that is, so different from us that he did not have in his flesh anything to contend with.

It was sinless flesh. Then, of course, you see how the Roman Catholic dogma of the Immaculate Conception necessarily follows. But why stop there? Mary being born sinless, then, of course, her mother also had sinless flesh. But you can not stop there. You must go back to her mother, -and so back until you come to Adam; and the result? There never was a fall: Adam never sinned; and thus, you see, by that tracing of it, we find the essential identity of Roman Catholicism and Spiritualism.

E. J. Waggoner

General Conference Bulletin 1901, p. 404.

 

CHAPTER 11 - The Dagger Strikes (Part 2)  Atonement Completed at Calvary"

Having appeased the evangelicals, perhaps unwittingly, by robbing Christ of his qualifications to be our heavenly High Priest (as in Hebrews 2:17, 18; 4:15), Froom now moves in to emasculate our sanctuary message by cutting the atonement off at the cross. But as long as Adventism continues to believe that the earthly sanctuary services were instituted to prefigure the service of the sanctuary in heaven, this would be impossible.

So Froom sets about to distance the "earthly" from the "heavenly" by emphasizing that the earthly shadow was not an exact image (see Hebrews 10:1, MOD 558). Hopefully then, he can lead us to believe that the shadow was so distorted that all the atoning work of the earthly priesthood had no counterpart in heaven.

Ridiculous as this dissimilarity seems, this is exactly what Froom is aboutnot that he denies Christ's ministerial role in the heavenly sanctuaryhe just insists that Christ is applying the benefits of a completed atonement. "The earthly was simply a figure for the time then present," he says (MOD p. 557).

How differently the Lord's Messenger views type and antitype!

“We are in the great Day of Atonement and the sacred work of Christ for the people of God that is going on at the present time in the heavenly sanctuary, should be our constant study. We should teach our children what the typical Day of atonement signified, and that it was a special season of great humiliation and confession of sins before God. The antitypical day of atonement is to be of the same character.” (5T 520).

How then, does our self-appointed exponent of righteousness by faith overcome the recurring obstacle of the Spirit of Prophecy?

He simply reverts to the old technique of interpreting the SOP to his own endsa little more subjective selection and word manipulation arranged under misleading headings. Let us take an example from page 501 of Movement of Destiny. We have a subheading, "COMPLETE ATONEMENT MADE ON CROSS" under which we read, "When the Father beheld the sacrifice of His Son [on the cross] He said, `It is enough. The Atonement is complete."' And again, "When He offered Himself on the cross, a perfect atonement was made for the sins of the people." And so on. From such fragments of SOP quotations Froom, draws the conclusion:

“The transaction of the cross, then, is indisputably the act of the atonement.” (MOD p. 501).

Once again, the references for these fragmented quotations are withheld, and probably for very good reasons. How many of our readers would have the inclination or the facilities to source these quotations and check them out? If we were to do so, it would become apparent that they were written in the context of the sacrificial aspect of the atonement. (The quotations come from RH September 24, 1901 and ST June 28, 1899 respectively.)

When QOD had dealt with exactly the same quotations some fourteen years earlier, they had been correctly listed under the subheading, "COMPLETE SACRIFICIAL ATONEMENT MADE ON CROSS" (QOD p. 663).

If we are to believe that Froom was the main author and editor of QOD, it would seem that Froom's interpretative role had expanded considerably. What was then a "complete sacrificial atonement" had now become a "complete atonement" (MOD, p. 501).

Briefly, let us look at another of Froom's misleading subheadings and garbled quotations:

“CROSS SOLE MEANS OF ATONEMENT. The cross is thus the "means of man's atonement." There could have been "no pardon for sin had this atonement not been made." So, "the cross was ordained as a means of atonement." Christ "gave Himself an atoning sacrifice" (ibid., p. 502).

It will be noticed that in spite of Froom's efforts, he does not succeed in making Mrs. White state that the cross was the "sole means of atonement" (as in the subheading). She merely claims that it was "a means of man's atonement"which of course, is quite correct. There can be no atonement in the heavenly sanctuary (as in the earthly) without the sacrifice which provides the blood. So once again, Froom devises an interpretative subheading as a substitute for fact.

No wonder he refrains from quoting Mrs. White on the continuing atonement in heaven! In that marvelous work of inspiration, The Great Controversy Between Christ and Satan, she describes Christ's judicial mediatorial role which started at the close of Daniel's great time prophecy ending in 1844 (Daniel 8:14):

Attended by heavenly angels, our great High Priest enters the Holy of holies, and there appears in the presence of God, to engage in the last acts of His ministration in behalf of men to perform the work of investigative judgment, and to make an atonement for all who are shown to be entitled to its benefits (GC 480, emphasis added).

And what of Froom's claims that Christ is merely administering the "benefits" of a completed atonement? Hear the truth from God's Messenger:

“It is those who by faith follow Jesus in the great work of atonement, who receive the benefits of His mediation in their behalf; while those who reject the light which brings to view this work of ministration, are not benefited thereby.” (GC 430).

So it can be seen that Dr. Froom's claim of benefits being provided from a completed earthly atonement is complete nonsense.

What does inspiration say Christ is doing? He is "pleading His blood before the Father in behalf of sinners." Whether or not we receive the benefits of His mediation during this final phase of the atonement, is up to us. Who will not receive the benefits? "Those who reject the light which brings to view this work of ministration."

Do the authors of QOD reject this light? They certainly do, while taking upon themselves the awesome responsibility of interpreting the Spirit of Prophecy. Just listen to them:

“When therefore one hears an Adventist say, or reads in Adventist literature, even in the writings of Ellen G. White, that Christ is making atonement now, it should be understood that we mean simply that Christ is now making application of the benefits of the sacrificial atonement He made on the cross.” (QOD pp. 354, 355).

No wonder no one had the courage to append his signature to this specious document! No wonder Elder Andreasen described QOD as an attempt to lessen and destroy confidence in the Spirit of Prophecy and establish a "new theology."-(See Letters to the Churches No. 3).

No wonder Dr. Wilkinson claimed that it was a dagger aimed at the heart of Adventism! What then, would he have said about Movement of Destiny?

That there is one Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of the Eternal Father, the one by whom God created all things, and by whom they do consist; that He took on Him the nature of the seed of Abraham for the redemption of our fallen race; that He dwelt among men, full of grace and truth, lived our example, died our sacrifice, and was raised for our justification.

He ascended on high to be our only mediator in the sanctuary in heaven, where, with His own blood, He makes atonement for our sins; which atonement so far from being made on the cross, which was by the offering of the sacrifice, is the very last portion of His work as priest according to the example of the Levitical priesthood, which foreshadowed and prefigured the ministry of our Lord in heaven. See Lev. 16; Heb. 8:4, 5; 9:6, 7; etc.

Principle No. 2, Declaration of Fundamental Principles Taught and Practiced by the Seventh-day Adventists, 1872.

 

 CHAPTER 12 - False Claims and Trickery

The history of apostasy in the Christian church testifies to the fact that the introduction of heresies is a gradual process. Sometimes they are introduced as acceptable alternatives, as in the case of Constantine's introduction of Sunday as a holy day. Others are introduced as new light on previously held views that eventually end up as supposed corrections to that view. Still others gain a foothold on the basis that the church has held them all along, but somehow they have been forgotten. None of the heresies gain instant widespread acceptance, simply because it takes time for a generation of believers to pass away.

Such methods to achieve change are being repeated in Seventh-day Adventism today. Just listen to Dr. Froom:

And in addition to the complete Deity of Christ, Adventists had long been emphasizing the completed act of atonement on the cross, with our High Priest applying its wondrous benefits through His heavenly ministry. This was now our standard and general teaching-for decades before the time of the interviews. And as stated, this was affirmed and buttressed by the uniform baptismal certificate, with its covenant and vows of 1941 required of all candidates for membership in the Seventh-day Adventist Church.” (MOD, p. 482).

Let us examine this statement and its implications. First, a truth is statedAdventists had long been emphasizing the complete deity of Christ (meaning that we were not Arian), but it is coupled to an untruththat we had long accepted the notion of a completed act of atonement at the cross and that Christ is now merely applying the benefits of that act.

Second, we are told that this had been our standard teaching for "decades" prior to the evangelical interviews commenced in 1955 (but meaning, at least since 1935).

Third, it was a requirement of belief for all baptismal candidates since 1941.

Now let us test the credibility of Froom's statements. We will go back to the year 1952, only three years prior to the evangelical interviews, when the editor of Review and Herald, F. D. Nichol, published his ministerial handbook, Answers to Objections. Speaking of some objections to our doctrines over which some leave the Adventist Church, he observes on page 751:

“He [the ex-Adventist] speaks militantly of the "finished work of Christ on the cross."

Nichol then goes to some pains to show that such a position is devoid of logic:

“Of those who charge us with teaching strange doctrines because we believe that Christ's work of atonement for sin was begun rather than completed on Calvary, we ask the question "If a complete and final atonement was made on the cross for all sins, then will not all be saved?" for Paul says that "He died for all."

“Are we to understand you as being universalists? "No," you say, "not all men will be saved." Well then, are we to understand that you hold that Christ made complete atonement on the cross for only a limited few, and that His sacrifice was not world embracing, but only partial? That would be predestination in its worst form.” (Answers to Objections, 1952, p. 408).

Note the time just three years prior to the evangelical meetingsnot "decades"! But the editor of the Review and Herald was by no means the only one of our leaders to believe in a continuing atonement. Other books written and/or circulated during the decades 1935-1955 which upheld Christ's continuing work of atonement come to mind:

W. H. Branson's Drama of the Ages

F. C. Gilbert's Messiah in His Sanctuary

C. H. Watson's Atoning Work of Christ

M. L. Andreasen's The Sanctuary Service and The Epistle to the Hebrews

On the other hand we know of no books published by Adventism that taught a "completed atonement" prior to the publication of Questions on Doctrine. We have noted how, in the 1949 revision of Bible Readings the "repugnant" reference to Christ's "sinful fallen nature" had been deleted. Yet, no attempt to revise our belief on the heavenly atonement was made. We quote from the 1951 edition published by Review and Herald:

In the service of the heavenly sanctuary there is but one sacrifice; and but one atonement, or cleansing of the heavenly sanctuary, can be made, which must take place at the time assigned of God for it (Bible Readings, 1951, 205).

As the atonement day of the former dispensation was really a day of judgment, so the atonement work of Christ will include the investigation of the cases of His people prior to His coming the second time to receive them unto Himself (ibid., 207).

So much for Froom's "standard and general teaching for decades before the interviews" But what about his assertion that the "completed atonement" was "affirmed and buttressed by the baptismal certificate of 1941"? Let's take a careful look at Baptismal Vow No. 2:

“Do you accept the death of Jesus Christ on Calvary as an atoning sacrifice for the sins of men and believe that through faith in His shed blood, men are saved from sin and its penalty?” (Church Manual, 1951 edition).

Can an honest person agree with Froom's contention that this vow supports a "Completed Act of Atonement on the Cross"? This vow describes Christ's death as an "atoning sacrifice" just as we would describe the sacrifice in the typical earthly service. Interestingly, this vow also states that we are "saved through faith in His shed blood," which is backed up by traditional Adventist teaching and the Spirit of Prophecy.

Speaking of the heavenly sanctuary, Mrs. White writes,

“The ark that enshrines the tables of the law is covered with the mercy-seat before which Christ pleads His blood in the sinner's behalf. This is represented as the union of justice and mercy in the plan of redemption.” (GC 415).

And what of the men who formulated this baptismal statement? Did they intend it to uphold Froom's contention that it "confirmed and buttressed" a complete atonement? The committee which formulated the baptismal vow consisted of thirteen men under the chairmanship of W. H. Branson, some of whom were: 

J. L. McElhany, G. C. president 

W. G. Turner, G. C. vice-president 

L. E. Froom, secretary of ministerial association 

R. A. Anderson, associate ministerial secretary 

D. E. Rebok, president of SDA Theological Seminary 

(D. E. Rebok is credited with the actual alteration of Bible Readings on the "nature of Christ" under the direction of R. A. Anderson.)

Well, we probably know what Froom and Anderson had in mind as to the meaning behind the wording of the vow, because of their later obvious desire to alter our sanctuary belief to please Barnhouse. But what of Elder Branson, who was appointed chairman of the committee? In his book Drama of the Ages, Branson says,

“In the heavenly [Sanctuary] the blood of Jesus is actually presented as a sacrificial atonement for the sins of the people. In the earthly sanctuary, the services were performed by men. In the heavenly, Christ is the minister, and daily pleads the merits of His own blood in behalf of repentant sinners.” (p.257).

Furthermore, Branson had upheld Nichol's teaching of a continuing atonement when he wrote the Foreword to Answers to Objections. In it, Branson made known his attitude to Adventist doctrine:

“Throughout their entire history, Seventh-day Adventists have stood for certain distinct doctrines, some of which differ rather sharply from the teachings of other Christian bodies. Because of our insistence upon the scriptural authenticity of these unpopular teachings, we have naturally found it frequently necessary to defend our positions against those who would by careless or faulty interpretation seek to sweep away the distinctive tenets of our faith.”

How awesomely significant then, to realize in retrospect, that at least one member of Branson's committee had knowingly helped to formulate a baptismal vow that (to his way of thinking) could be interpreted later to uphold a completed atonement! Significantly, although holding the position of ministerial secretary and editor of the Ministry from 1941 to 1950, Froom kept his interpretation and views of an emasculated atonement out of print until such time as a sympathetic president ascended the throne in Washington. One can only speculate as to how many more cuckoo's eggs are nestling snugly in the "fundamental" jargon of Seventh day Adventism.

CHAPTER 13 - Kingdom, Czardom or Popedom?

We have seen how error rides smugly on the back of truth. But the converse is not possible, for truth cannot be attracted to error. It is therefore evident that any cause which relies on concealment, trickery and lies, or any other subterfuge to get its message across, must of necessity be a dishonest cause. This fact alone should discount any doctrinal conclusions drawn from dishonest arguments and propositions as found in Questions On Doctrine and Movement of Destiny.

But sadly, these books are now looked upon by the majority of administrators and leaders in the SDA church of Australasia as doctrinally authoritative. Those who point out the twin errors of Christ's limited humanity and His limited atonement are penalized by an administration which is bent on carrying out an undertaking given to Barnhouse to enforce the new stand. This is not altogether surprising when we remember that both books were published with the blessings of the contemporary G. C. presidents* and promoted vigorously by the vast resources of the church.

* As previously noted, Pastor Pierson later repudiated his Foreword to Movement of Destiny. Before this deplorable dilemma can be resolved, it is essential that we understand the political side of the equation. It is essential to discover how an organization which was formed to preach the three angels' messages has now become counterproductive to the very aims which brought it into existence. Why is it that the call to come out of Babylon has been replaced by demands to conform to Babylon? Why is it, that instead of being a separate people, we now find ourselves in bed with Babylon's daughters, the popular evangelicals?

Only with a proper understanding of the mechanism which has assisted this unholy union, will the church be able to return to its God-given task of preaching the third angel's message and be in a position to repel future attempts at seduction. In other words, it is vital that we learn from history in order that we may profit by our mistakes. It is not generally known that organization and religious liberty were issues around the time of the 1888 meetings. Just prior to the commencement of the General Conference meetings at Battle Creek, 1901, Mrs. White had declared that there must be:

“an entire new organization and to have a Committee that shall take in not merely half a dozen that is to be a ruling and controlling power ... to have this Conference pass on and close up as the Conferences have done, with the same manipulating, with the very same tone, and the same order God forbid! ... This thing has been continued for the last fifteen years or more, and God calls for a change.”(quoted by Jones in a letter to Daniells, January 26, 1906).

This makes it plain that Mrs. White was objecting to an organization that had allowed a few men to "manipulate" our work for a period extending back prior to the 1888 conference. She continued:

“From the light that I have ... there was a narrow compass here; there within that narrow compass is a king-like, a kingly ruling power. God means what He says, "I want a change here!" (Ibid.)

It was this "kingly" power which had prevented our leaders from humbling their hearts and had thwarted the Holy Spirit's attempt to bless our church with the latter rain.

At the 1893 General Conference in Battle Creek, Elder A. T. Jones had drawn such spontaneous confession from the delegates while lecturing on the third angel's message.

“Now brethren, when did that message of the righteousness of Christ begin with us as a people? [One or two in the audience: "Three or four years ago."] ... Yes, four. Where was it? [Congregation: "Minneapolis."] What then did the brethren reject at Minneapolis? The Loud Cry.... They rejected the latter rain-the loud cry of the third angel's message.” (G. C. Bulletin, 1893, p. 183).

It seems that A. T. Jones soon incurred the displeasure of President Daniells who had sought to circumscribe his activities during his term at Battle Creek Sanitarium as Bible instructor. But problems arose as Daniells saw fit to take part in secret meetings with others of the Sanitarium staff to which Jones was not invited.

During an address at a regular monthly meeting of the Sanitarium family held on March 4, 1906, Jones commented at some length on the meetings and said,

"Whatsoever is not as open as the day is of the methods of Satan. "*

*Jones enunciated a principle which does not appear to be understood by some present-day administrators of the S.D.A. Church, e.g. the secrecy of boardroom meetings.

Jones then read to the meeting most of a letter which he had written to Daniells a few weeks earlier, on 26th January. In the main, it had recounted the history of the reorganization of the General Conference in 1901, and the subsequent return in 1903 of the conference to its former bureaucracy.** He reminded Daniells that the reorganization of 1901 was the call away from a centralized order of things in which ... a few men held the ruling and directing power, to an organization in which all the people as individuals should have a part, with God, in Christ, by the Holy Spirit as the unifying and directing power (quoted in Jones' letter to Daniells).

**Jones quotes from the standard Dictionary: "A bureaucracy is sure to think that its duty is to augment official power, official business, or official numbers, rather than to leave free the energies of mankind." This could explain the decretive manner in which the South Pacific Division recently foisted a Babylonian-like hymnbook and a gallows-like logo upon our church.

It was with this understanding that a new constitution was adopted and, "the monarchy was swept away completely." This was in harmony with Mrs. White's wishes. Said she:

“We want to understand that there are no gods in our Conference. There are to be no kings here and no kings in any conference that is formed, "all ye are brethren"

(ibid.).

So it is quite evident that the former organization had degenerated into a bureaucratic power led by presidents. Mrs. White called it a "kingly power." This had now changed. It was replaced by a committee as described by Jones:

“Under this [new] constitution the General Conference Committee was composed of a large number of men, with power to organize itself by choosing a chairman, etc. No president of the General Conference was chosen; nor was any provided for. The presidency of the General Conference was eliminated to escape a centralized power, a one-man power, a kingship, a monarchy.” (ibid.).

But the General Conference did not remain without a president for long. Like in Israel of old, there was a clamor for "kingly" leaders. Let Jones take up the story as he castigates Daniells for disobeying the wishes of God by violating the newly-formed constitution [just two years after 1901]:

“A few men . . . without any kind of authority, but directly against the plain words of the constitution, took it absolutely upon themselves to elect you president, and Brother Prescott vice-president of the General Conference. And that there never was in this universe a clearer piece of usurpation of position, power, and authority ... “You two were, then, of right, just as much president and vice president of Timbuktu as you were of the Seventh-day Adventist General Conference.” (ibid.).

The strength of this rebuke to the two top officers of the church should not be lost upon readers.* Jones then outlines the actions taken by Daniells and his supporters to give the usurpation an air of legitimacy:

“A new constitution was framed to fit and to uphold usurpation.” (ibid.).

 * Neither was this rebuke lost upon Daniells. Many consider that as a result of such outspoken rebukes, Daniells virtually hounded Jones out of the Church. But it seems that in later life, Daniells repented of his attitude toward Jones and acknowledged that "Jones was right and I was wrong" (source: Pastor G. Bumside, following a conversation with Meade McGuire in USA, 1946).

This, Jones saw as "a Czardom ... which has since gone steadily forward," and he went on to back up his view with the feelings of some men of experience within the denomination:

“There has never been such a one-man power, such a centralized despotism, so much of papacy! ... And as a part of this bureaucracy, there is of all the incongruous things ever heard of, a Religious Liberty Bureaua contradiction in terms.” (ibid.).

And now for Jones' summation of the situation:

“The Seventh-day Adventist denomination is more like the Catholic Church than is any other Protestant church in the world (ibid.).* [For a reproduction of Jones' historic letter, see Appendix.]

And so within the Seventh-day Adventist Church was reinstalled an instrument of "papal-like, kingly" authority, the basic structure of which remains in place to this day. This is not to imply that all succeeding presidents have taken advantage of the "kingly" authority. But some have used it to the peril of our church; and either intentionally or by manipulation, a few men have usurped a position comparable to the Vatican Curia, taking upon themselves the responsibility of redefining our church doctrines.

*Let us remind the reader that this is Jones describing the S.D.A. organization of 1906. Any similarity of Jones' description to conditions today is entirely providential and warrants close examination.

CHAPTER 14 - The Atonement, Completed or Uncompleted-Who Cares?

Recently, the author was discussing Adventism's latest pronouncement- "Seventh-day Adventists Believe. .. " with a retired minister. The observation was made that President N. C. Wilson and the General Conference* were still pushing the heresy of a completed atonement, citing the following:

“The atonement, or reconciliation, was completed on the cross as foreshadowed by the sacrifices, and the penitent believer can trust in this finished work of our Lord.” ("Seventh-day Adventists Believe. .. ", p. 315).

* Under the heading "We Gratefully Acknowledge ..." we read: "With the authorization and encouragement of president Neal C. Wilson and the other officers of the General Conference of Seventhday Adventists, the Ministerial Association has undertaken to prepare this volume to furnish reliable information on beliefs of our church" ("Seventh-day Adventists Believe... ", p. v).

Imagine the author's surprise to learn that this minister, who to the best of the author's knowledge is a firm believer in our sanctuary message, could see nothing wrong with such a statement.** 

** The reader will notice that this statement not only repeats Froom's error of a completed atonement, but incorrectly implies that this was foreshadowed by the earthly sacrifices, and comes perilously close to satisfying the evangelicals' demands that a Christian must believe in Christ's completed work of salvation.

A similar experience took place a few days later while talking to a very respected evangelist whose faith in our sanctuary and other historic messages seems undiminished. He could see nothing wrong with the claims of Questions on Doctrine and Movement of Destiny, that Christ is now "administering the benefits of a completed atonement at the cross." Both men felt that the author was reading an unwarranted intent into a perfectly innocent statement.

But let it ever be remembered that the overriding purpose of QOD was to convince Christendom that we believe in Christ's completed work of atonement (and by implication, salvation) in order to escape the stigma of cultism. Barnhouse and Martin,  having been satisfied on this point, then ridiculed our claim that Christ is carrying on a further work in the heavenly Sanctuary as being illogical. Said Barnhouse:

“Any effort to establish it [Christ's heavenly ministry] is stale, flat and unprofitable.” (Eternity, September 1956).

And again,

“The latter doctrine [investigative judgment], to me, is the most colossal, facesaving phenomenon in religious history!” (Ibid.).

An attempt to overcome such "logical criticism" is currently being manifested in the South Pacific Division where ministers are teaching that the "pre-Advent judgment" [the preferred term for the investigative judgment]* refers to God's judgment; i.e. it is God who is being judged in order that the universe should see the justice of God in His dealings with Satan. 

* In "Seventh-day Adventists Believe. .. ", p. 317, the investigative judgment is referred to as the pre-millennial judgment" and "pre-Advent judgment." 

While preaching at the Avondale Memorial Church, Pastor Geoff Youlden of the South Pacific Division Media Centre claimed that in the pre-Advent judgment, "God is up for judgment" and that "God is in the hot seat" (Sermon, "The Gospel and the Judgment," August 20, 1988). When the author later pointed out to him that this is an echo of Fordian teaching,** he claimed that he knew nothing of what Ford believes or teaches! Such a claim is all the more astounding when it is realized that Youlden studied under Ford at Avondale College. Such teaching appears to retain belief in the investigative judgment, while shifting its emphasis on to God's shoulders. Thus the impact of the first angel's message of Revelation 14, which is an urgent call for personal preparedness, is effectively muted. 

** Ford wrote in Australian Signs of the Times, June 24, 1957 under the heading "Will believers and Their Sins Come to Judgment?": "God has placed Himself on trial before the universe."

This view is not only comparatively new to Adventism but is contrary to the Spirit of Prophecy:

“The act of Christ in dying for the salvation of man would not only make heaven accessible to men, but before all the universe it would justify God and His Son in their dealing with the rebellion of Satan.” (PP 69; see Appendix for chapter twenty five).

The authority of the Spirit of Prophecy is upheld in the S.D.A. Bible Commentary. Here it is clearly acknowledged that God's method of dealing with sin has been eternally vindicated before the universe:

“The supreme demonstration was made by the incarnation, life and death of God's own Son. God now stood wholly vindicated before the universe.... Thus the charges of Satan were refuted and the peace of the universe was made eternally sure. God's character had been vindicated before the universe.” (S.D.A. Bible Commentary vol. 6, p. 508).

There is no doubt that many Adventists are quite naive when accepting deceptive pronouncements which are aimed at destroying biblical Adventist positions. If such statements should come with the blessings of presidents and others who have attained influential positions, it becomes difficult to accept that they are misleading. Instead, some strive to interpret these statements to harmonize with traditional Adventist beliefs. This is the genius of Satan's chicanery, for while trusting souls are silently consenting, heretics are energetically exploiting this dual state of the art.

Dr. Desmond Ford, ex-minister of the S.D.A. Church and still a member of Pacific Union College Church, exploits the "finished atonement" concept to explain his evangelical view of a term used almost exclusively by Adventists"Everlasting Gospel."

In his magazine, Good News Australia, August 1988, Ford writes under the heading,

"Meditation upon the Everlasting Gospel." He says,

Thus in every place where Paul mentions "the righteousness of faith," he means not sanctification, but that justification which is based on the finished atonement.” (p. 2).

Notice that his conclusions on sanctification and justification are based on a "finished atonement."

Even being a credentialed minister of the S.D.A. Church does not hinder Pastor Vern Heise from expressing his views in Ford's Good News Australia. Naturally, they are compatible with Ford's evangelical-type gospel. In an article, "Have You Been to Church at Antioch?", Heise takes a tilt at religious "groups that feel that they are "sole custodians of the truth." Of course, being a veteran minister past retiring age, he would be very aware that the S.D.A. Church is the "sole custodian" of the sanctuary truth with its judgment-hour message. Heise tells us that “there were those in Jerusalem that wanted to make Christianity hard work. They were enjoying their masochism-their self-imposed penances. They were like some today who will perform their religion even if it kills them!” (Good News Australia, September 1988).

Then comes the punch line to which his whole article has been targeted:

“On the other hand, the church in Antioch rejoiced in and celebrated the finished work of Christ.” (ibid.).

Yes, that is how the "finished work of our Lord" ("Seventh-day Adventists Believe . . . ") is being interpreted from within our churchshades of Barnhouse, who sees our belief in Christ's heavenly atoning ministry as "stale, flat and unprofitable," and the keeping of Sabbath as legalistic. (A "self-imposed penance"? "Performing their religion even if it kills them"?)

May we remind the reader of Elder F. D. Nichol's words quoted in chapter 12:

“[The ex-Adventist] speaks militantly of the finished work of Christ on the cross.” (Answers to Objections, p. 751).

Now, over thirty-five years later, it is a credentialed, ordained minister of the Seventh-day Adventist Church who so speaks. And who does he now have to back him? Well, according to "Seventh day Adventists Believe. .. ", he could quote the Ministerial Association, who have the authorization and encouragement of president Neal C. Wilson and the other officers of the General Conference.

But worse is to come. The Ministerial Association tells us that "Seventh-day Adventists Believe. .. " is a biblical exposition of the twenty-seven "Fundamental Beliefs of Seventh-day Adventists" (p. iv and cover title). Yet all the while, recent converts to our church, and young people particularly, are being brainwashed with the evangelical interpretation of a make-believe brother/Saviour Who finished His work at Calvary.

To the carnal mind, a bargain in cheap grace, or salvation in sin, is very appealing. Qualms of conscience can be assuaged by deductive reasoning based on new and erroneous positions touted by official publications of the S.D.A. Church. It goes something like this:

Because Jesus came to this earth with the nature of unfallen Adam, He did not inherit the sinful tendencies that I received from my parents, and therefore, He had an advantage over me and He does not expect me to follow Him as my example.

And because He completed His atoning work of salvation at the cross, there is no need for a later investigative judgment in heaven. If I try to keep his commandments, I am rejecting Christ's victory over sin on my behalf and I am actually committing the sin of trying to save myself by my own works.

Perhaps in the cold light of logic, we should be grateful to the General Conference for showing us in "Seventh-day Adventists Believe ... " that they are unable to clearly interpret their Fundamental Belief No. 23, as enunciated at Dallas. Just look at this pathetic effort to portray the earthly sacrifice as the atonement in an attempt to make their "completed atonement" at the cross appear credible:

“The application of the atoning blood during the mediatorial ministry of the priest was also seen as a form of atonement.” (Leviticus 4:35) ("Seventh-day Adventists Believe .. . ", p. 315).

"A form of atonement"? What nonsense! It was a crucial part of the atonement.

But lo and behold, these equivocators are caught in the trap of their own making and go on to contradict their previous statement of "the finished work." In defiance of Barnhouse's and Ford's logic, they have to justify Christ's further ministry in heaven.

They say,

“Christ's priestly ministry provides for the sinner's forgiveness and reconciliation to God.” Hebrews 7:25 (ibid., p. 317).

And again,

“The heavenly sanctuary is the great command center where Christ conducts His priestly ministry for our salvation.” (ibid., p. 316).

And yet, just one page back (315), we have been told that "the atonement or reconciliation was completed on the cross"! Such is the dilemma into which people arrive when they endeavor to produce a book on Adventist beliefs that has something for everyone.* And if this dose of double-talk has not sufficiently confused the meaning of Fundamental 23, here is more, as we read:

“The issue [investigative judgment] is with God and the universe, not between God and the true child.” (ibid., p. 326).

*Many consider the latest statement of Fundamental Beliefs to be a consensus statement. This was openly claimed by pastor Rex Moe at a special business meeting of the Avondale church (September 27, 1987) in his attempt to prove that various interpretations of our Fundamentals are allowed. Now, in "Seventh-day Adventists Believe. .. ", we have the farcical situation of a consensus interpretation of a consensus statement!

In the light of such enchanting statements, the instruction given by God's messenger takes on a new urgency for Seventh-day Adventists today:

“We are individually to be judged according to the deeds done in the body. In the typical service, when the work of atonement was performed by the high priest in the Most Holy Place of the earthly sanctuary, the people were required to afflict their souls before God, and confess their sins, that they might be atoned for and blotted out. Will any less be required of us in this anti-typical day of atonement, when Christ in the sanctuary above is pleading in behalf of His people, and the final irrevocable decision is to be pronounced upon every case? .. .

”We must no longer remain upon enchanted ground. We are fast approaching the close of probation.... Let the church arise, and repent of her backslidings before God. Let the watch men awake and give the trumpet a certain sound. It is a definite warning that we have to proclaim. God commands His servants "Cry aloud, spare not, lift up thy voice like a trumpet, and shew my people their transgression, and the house of Jacob their sins" (Isaiah 58:1). (1SM 125, 126).

So, just how important is it that Seventh-day Adventists resist the teaching of a completed atonement? Let us hear from the Church's proclaimed authority on the sanctuary:

“No Adventist can believe in a final atonement on the cross and remain an Adventist.” (Andreasen, Letters to the Churches titled "The Living Witness," p. 2, as reprinted by LMN Publishing, 1988).

The truth of this statement is supported by the Spirit of Prophecy. 

“The scripture which above all others had been both the foundation and central pillar of the Advent faith was the declaration "Unto two thousand and three hundred days; then shall the sanctuary be cleansed.” Daniel 8:14 (The Story of Redemption, p. 375).

“When Christ entered the most holy place of the heavenly sanctuary to perform the closing work of the atonement, He committed to His servants the last message of mercy to be given to the world. Such is the warning of the third angel of Revelation 14.” (ibid., p. 379).

 

Elder A. F. Ballenger was once one of our leading evangelists, and won many souls to the truth. Eventually he was dismissed from the church because of theological differences, and, as one would say, "of all things," the heresy for which he was dismissed is the very doctrine now being forced upon us, teaching that the atonement was made on the cross!

In commenting on his dismissal, Mrs. White said: "[His] proofs are not reliable. If received they would destroy the faith of God's people in the truth that has made us what we are.... 

"It was under the guidance of the Holy Spirit that the presentations of the

sanctuary questions were given.... Another and still another, will arise and bring in supposed great light, and make their assertions. But we stand by the old landmarks (Selected Messages, Book 1, pp. 161-162). 

M. L. Andreasen on the Atonement Letters to the Churches, January 19, 1958

CHAPTER 15  - Target: Australia

It was well nigh impossible for heresy to gain a permanent foothold while God's Messenger, Mrs. E. G. White was alive. Her influence survived her death and the work prospered in proportion to the number of her dwindling contemporaries.

Particularly was this so in Australasia, where Mrs. White had established the Avondale School for Christian Workers (now Avondale College) according to the blueprint. This model of Christian education was eventually to make its presence felt as its missionaries not only encompassed Australasia, but they were eventually to take a prominent part in speeding the advance of the everlasting gospel around the world.

They had no illusions as to the message contained in the everlasting gospel and they did not deem it advisable to attend colleges of "higher" learning to discover that message. They called their brothers out of Babylon into God's remnant church, that they too might catch a vision of a judgment-bound world on the brink of eternity. They were not ashamed of this "gospel of Christ" with His atoning role as ministering High Priest in the heavenly sanctuary.

If, and when Satan tried to gain an heretical foothold within the church, such efforts were stoutly and ably resisted. One such attempt was made in the late 1920s through the person of one of Australasia's capable leaders, Pastor W. W. Fletcher. Some say that he had been sidetracked by Elder L. R. Conradi of Europe, on our sanctuary message and on the Spirit of Prophecy. Let it be stated here, that unlike some later and contemporary heretics, Pastor Fletcher presented his propositions honestly by acknowledging that he believed differently to historic Adventism.

A subcommittee to study Fletcher's propositions was appointed early in 1930 by the Australasian Union Conference of which Pastor W. G. Turner was president. Their report, which rejected Fletcher's views, was forwarded to the General Conference where another committee had been formed to counsel with Fletcher. The chairman of that committee, Pastor Montgomery, wrote to the Australasian Union thanking them for the subcommittee's work and conclusions. He said,

“We feel that this statement is both tenable and adequate to prove the error of the views held by Brother Fletcher.”

In the light of present heresies, it is interesting to note one of the highlights of the subcommittee's statement:

“If sin was cancelled at the cross, there is no need for a scapegoat. The typical service however, provided one, which is proof that the sin was not cancelled at the altar of burnt offering, which is the equivalent of the cross. The sin was finally atoned for, not at the cross, but in the true tabernacle in heaven before the "ark of the testament," which John saw in vision (p. 5).”

The late Pastor A. W. Anderson was asked to prepare a paper on Fletcher's attitude to our sanctuary doctrine. This was circulated with the committee's report. In it he correctly observed:

“On the reconciliation [atonement], "That this reconciliation was not completed on the cross is evident from the fact that it was the work of a high priest to make reconciliation. When He was on earth, He was not a priest. (see Hebrews 8:4).

If reconciliation was completed on the cross, then when Christ entered the heavenly sanctuary with His own blood and became our High Priest, His work was already completed."

The concluding paragraph states:

“After a careful re-examination of the ninety passages of scripture in which the words "atonement" and "reconciliation" occur, I am more profoundly convinced than ever that W. W. Fletcher is wrong, and the denominational teaching on the cleansing of the sanctuary is right.

(It should be noted that one of the men on the General Conference committee which commended their Australasian brethren for their defense of a continuing atonement in the heavenly sanctuary was none other than L. E. Froom.)

God signally blessed the efforts of His hard-working, dedicated servants and time came when the homelands of Australia and New Zealand attained one of the highest percentages of Adventists in the world. But things were to change. Satan had targeted this hard-won bastion of truth for one of his most amazingly successful attacks against God's remnant church. He was to succeed eventually in reversing the role of the "blueprint" missionary college to that of a veritable brooder of heresy, with the inevitable result of bringing the advance of the third angel of Revelation 14 to a virtual standstill in Australia and New Zealand.

This dramatic change is revealed in the statistical reports published annually in the Australasian Record. For instance, the report for the year ending June 1972, shows a peak membership gain of approximately 1,023 in the two homeland Unions. This was achieved with the help of 235 ordained ministers. Within ten years (1982) the annual gain had dropped to 448 souls but it took 52 more ministers (287) to achieve this dismal result. The total tithe received in the homelands in 1982 was $18,577,755 which means that for each member increase, it cost $41,468 of tithe against $4,697 for each member increase back in 1972. During the year ending 1984, the Trans-Australian Union Conference actually suffered a membership loss of 166 members.

How could such a catastrophe come about? We must hark back to those fateful years of the early 1950s when vice-president Figuhr and his boys of the Washington club were smarting under the stigma of cultism. When Elder Figuhr came to Australia shortly before his election to the General Conference presidency, he used his fist to emphasize the direction in which he believed authority should travel: "Representation comes up," he said, "but direction comes down."

At that same gathering in Melbourne, he also gave our workers an insight into the characteristics of leaders best qualified to keep that authority moving in the desired direction. He is reported to have spoken along these lines:

“When a man's name is brought up for nomination to leadership, it is not his spiritual or doctrinal standing that is to be questioned, or even his administrative capabilities. No, it is his ability to get on well with his fellows and maintain harmony that should be of paramount consideration.”

According to the worker reporting this revelation, this was a rather startling departure from accepted ideals and practice. There was no doubt in the worker's mind that Figuhr was speaking about pliable middle-of-the-road men.* Many years later, Australian Adventists were to see the baleful results of the implementation of this unscriptural policy.

* While Figuhr was making his acceptance speech, after being elected G. C. president, he described himself as a "middle-of-the-road" man.

Note by Ron: That would be “a Laodicean, sitting on the fence man.” End note.

In the year 1957, our zealous Dr. Froom came to Australasia, promoting his book Prophetic Faith of Our Fathers and the forthcoming book Questions on Doctrine. We are told that he took the opportunity to prepare our ministry for the great leap "forward" that would be expected to follow our new understanding of righteousness by faith. He introduced them to the mysteries of Christ's "vicarious human nature" and the wonders of His "completed atonement."** 

** Vicarious: deputed; acting for another, substituted (Collins)

Vicariously: by substitution (Collins)

If Christ took my human nature in place of me, what sort of nature does that leave me with?                  

By the end of the same year, Dr. Edward Heppenstall of the Washington Seminary had arrived at Avondale College to take part in a lengthy extension school for ministers. After a lapse of over thirty years, recollections of all that transpired in his lectures are growing dim. But certain shock statements have left their mark. One student recalls how Heppenstall told them that there is only one covenant. When asked how such a statement can be reconciled with Adventism's two-covenant position as outlined in Patriarchs and Prophets, *** he is reported to have replied smugly, "You don't."

*** Pastor Mervyn Ball, a retired Australian evangelist, told the author how he quoted the Spirit of Prophecy. It counters a claim by L. E. Froom that the atonement had been completed at Calvary. Froom's only response was a stony silence. Apparently other workers felt too embarrassed to press the issue, a phenomenon that has shown up repeatedly in this Division's march toward apostasy.

Others recall how he frequently stressed the need for ministers to emphasize the love of God in their sermons, and left them with the feeling that perhaps doctrines were not too important. Yet another remembers how Heppenstall recited his encounters with M. L. Andreasen, whom he portrayed as a decided hindrance to the advancement of Adventism.

Still others of his students claim that Heppenstall prevented the then Division president, F. G. Clifford from sitting in on his classes. In hindsight, this is not surprising, as Clifford's reputation for doctrinal orthodoxy had probably registered in Washington. By some accounts, there were three students who made quite an impression, not only on Heppenstall, but also on their colleagues. It appears that Heppenstall was very impressed by their receptive attitude to "new light." He warmly commended them and urged them to go abroad for advanced study. Some dutifully followed his advice and eventually all three achieved a degree of notoriety among Adventists: Desmond Ford left the imprint of his name on apostate Adventism, and his theology in Avondale College; Walter R. L. Scragg achieved the honor while president of the Euro-African Division, of overseeing the bestowal of the goldplated medal on the pope;* and Lend Moulds was fired from the theological department of Avondale College for teaching heresy which he picked up while studying in a North American Adventist University.**

* See Review and Herald, August 11, 1977 on Medal.

**Moulds is to be commended for showing a rare degree of honesty, in that, unlike some others at the College, he refused to conceal his new-found "faith" from the administration.

So it was, that doubts on the competency of those who worked out our historic doctrinal positions were planted in the minds of our workers while the authority of leadership as interpreters of scripture and the Spirit of Prophecy was established in the minds of many. All that was needed now was a pliable leadership, amenable to the dictates of a Washington hierarchy. But the time was not yet. President Clifford had a firm grip on the reins. As Froom had seriously observed,***

“We need more funerals to get Adventism up and going.”

*** According to a tape of Mike Clute's interview, Froom would ring up Wilkinson on his birthday and express disappointment that he was still alive.

There are men among us in responsible positions who hold that the opinions of a

few conceited philosophers so-called, are more to be trusted than the truth of the Bible, or the testimonies of the Holy Spirit. Such a faith as that of Paul, Peter, or John, is considered old-fashioned, and insufferable at the present day. It is pronounced absurd, mystical, and unworthy of an intelligent mind.

God has shown me that these men are Hazaels to prove a scourge to our

people. They are wise above what is written. This unbelief of the very truths of God's word because human judgment cannot comprehend the mysteries of His work, is found in every district in all ranks of society. It is taught in most of our schools, and comes into the lessons of the nurseries.

E. G. White

Testimonies for the Church, vol. 5, p. 79.

 

Note by Ron: The following statement is so apropos and has been since soon after the death of Ellen G. White in 1915:

“The patience of God has an object, but you are defeating it. He is allowing a state of things to come that you would fain see counteracted by and by, but it will be too late. God commanded Elijah to anoint the cruel and deceitful Hazael king over Syria, that he might be a scourge to idolatrous Israel. Who knows whether God will not give you up to the deceptions you love? Who knows but that the preachers who are faithful, firm, and true may be the last who shall offer the gospel of peace to our unthankful churches? It may be that the destroyers are already training under the hand of Satan and only wait the departure of a few more standard-bearers to take their places, and with the voice of the false prophet cry, "Peace, peace," when the Lord hath not spoken peace. I seldom weep, but now I find my eyes blinded with tears; they are falling upon my paper as I write. It may be that erelong all prophesyings among us will be at an end, and the voice which has stirred the people may no longer disturb their carnal slumbers.  {5T 77.1}

When God shall work His strange work on the earth, when holy hands bear the ark no longer, woe will be upon the people. Oh, that thou hadst known, even thou, in this thy day, the things that belong unto thy peace! Oh, that our people may, as did Nineveh, repent with all their might and believe with all their heart, that God may turn away His fierce anger from them.”  {5T 77.2} 

The Ark was the presence of God. If once holy hands bear the ark no longer, this means that God’s presence has departed, and that is how He expresses His fierce anger and His strange word at the end. He withdraws His presence, and demonic destruction and woe begins. End note by Ron.

Chapter 16  - "We Need More Funerals"

While our Australasian workers were left pondering this twist to Adventist theology, Froom was busy back in Washington, defending and promoting Questions on

Doctrine and anxiously counting the "funerals." [of the last faithful leaders.]

But they were slow in coming. Andreasen, who was now an elderly man, just wouldn't go away, and Wilkinson at eighty-five was aggravatingly healthy. And, there were those two troublesome missionaries, Elders Wieland and Short, who had submitted a paper, 1888 Re-Examined, to the General Conference. They had been sent back to their fields of labor in Africa after consenting to let the matter drop. But now, others had seen fit to circulate a number of copies of their paper, and laymen were complaining about a cover-up.

The original response to Wieland and Short's paper by the Defense Committee, while not supportive, had been generally civil and understanding. It carried the signature of the committee chairman, W. E. Read, and was dated December 4, 1951. It said: "The manuscript gives every evidence of earnest, diligent and painstaking effort." But in September 1958, the two missionaries received a second report, from the officers of the General Conferencethis time without any signatures.

Not only had there been a change in presidents (Figuhr had succeeded W. H. Branson), but there had been a decided reversal of tone and attitude. The General

Conference stated:

“After having checked and examined the Spirit of Prophecy sources and their use in the manuscript, it is evident that the authors have revealed considerable amateurishness in both research and use of facts.” (p. 47).

They concluded,

“Had the authors succeeded in substantiating their charges, their work might have been worthy of serious consideration.” (U. 49)

In studying Wieland and Short's reply to such insults, one can only praise God for their Christian attitude. They were able to demonstrate that the General Conference's charges were unable to bear the test of careful analysis. To the careful reader, it appears that the reckless charges of the leadership could be better applied back upon themselves. Nevertheless, Elders Wieland and Short were able to write:

“Lastly, if anything in this analysis of "Appraisal" seems to be disrespectful, critical, or presumptuous to your dignity as the Lord's appointed leaders of His work, His "anointed," we assure you that it is not so intended to be. Circumstances have required that we speak frankly.” (Letter to Officers and Executive Committee of G.C., October 1958).

These loyal workers were apparently resigned to letting the matter rest there, for in a letter addressed to G. C. secretary, W. R. Beach, January 21, 1959 they wrote:

“We wish to state herewith our desire to leave this matter, to drop it henceforth and to continue as in the past to refrain from any agitation whatsoever or the pressing of our view upon the General Conference or the church.... We return to our mission field, therefore with no desire to make an issue of our views there or elsewhere."

Here the matter could have rested, as far as Brethren Wieland and Short were concerned. They had delivered their message. But, in the providence of God, His messengers were not meant to remain silent. Things happened in this way:

Being an employee of the General Conference, it is highly probable that L. E. Froom would be among those leaders who had complained, "that the manuscript (of Wieland and Short) revealed a very critical attitude concerning the leadership, the ministry, and the plane of work in God's cause" (G. C. "Further Appraisal of 1888 ReExamined" p. 2).

This unfortunate attitude of many of our leaders was similar to that of the leaders in 1888 who rejected the Minneapolis message. They regarded the messengers, Waggoner and Jones, as young upstarts who were attacking the leadership of older and experienced men. These leaders were not willing to humble themselves by accepting the message lest they be seen as being reproved by God. Said Mrs. White, while commenting on the Minneapolis situation:

“They [the opposers] heard not, neither would they understand. Why? Lest they should be converted and have to acknowledge that all their ideas were not correct. This they were too proud to do, and therefore persisted in rejecting God's counsel and the light and evidence which had been given.” (Ms 25, 1890, quoted in 1888 Re-Examined, p. 24).

As this rebuke to Wieland and Short came from the General Conference

(meaning its officers), the church was once more doomed to wander in the wilderness and forego the outpouring of the latter rain. Once again its leaders had failed to grasp the real meaning of righteousness by faith in all its beauty and fullness. But this time the rejection would go even further. The church would eventually repudiate the "third angel's message in verity."

I watched them tearing a building down, A gang of men in a busy town. 

With a ho-heave-ho and a lusty yell

They swung a beam and the sidewall fell. 

I asked the foreman, "Are these men skilled And the men you'd hire if you had to build?"  He gave a laugh, saying, "No, indeed!

Just common labor is all I need. 

I can easily wreck in a day or two

What builders have taken a year to do."

-Anon

(Published in Review and Herald, January 7, 1954.)

End of Chapter 16

CHAPTER 17   -   Australasia Embraces Heresy

In 1972 Dr. Desmond Ford returned to Australia to resume his position as head of the theology department of Avondale College. Safely in his possession was a precious doctorate from Manchester University in England. Probably he carried with him something else of great importa copy of Froom's recently released Movement of Destiny. Ford could scarcely believe his luck! Here was a book published by the Seventh-day Adventist Church, recommended by the president and vice-president of the General Conference, to which he could appeal to support much of his popular evangelical view of the gospel, which was now further clouded with shades of Plymouth Brethrenism.*

* In the special edition of Ministry, October 1980, devoted to reporting the Glacier View meetings, is to be found a brief, but highly significant statement by Ford. Referring to his defense paper, he said:

The task on which I was working was not a novel one, but one engaged upon by other men well known to us, such as W. W. Prescott and L. E. Froom.

As chairman of the Guiding Committee for Movement of Destiny, N. C. Wilson [as G. C. president] was later to find himself sitting in judgment of Ford. History has shown that he wore two hats.

He had come a long way since taking the advice of Heppenstall back in 1957.

Following Avondale College's affiliation with Pacific Union College, he had returned to Avondale to complete his bachelor's degree and then, under sponsorship, had gone to America for post-graduate studies. By the early 1960s, Dr. Ford was appointed chairman of Avondale's theology department. It was not long before discerning ministers were noticing that ministerial graduates of the College were expressing some strange doctrinal beliefs.

Even more disturbing were Ford's expositions on the prophecies of Daniel eight and nine as published in papers like the Australasian Signs of the Times (see Signs of the Times, June-October 1973). Although such articles impinged on Adventists' understanding of the sanctuary message with its investigative judgment, yet there seemed to be no counter from Division leadership. Protests from loyal ministers and laymen were not followed with the positive action that had been previously taken to combat heresy, as demonstrated in the handling of W. W. Fletcher and R. Greive. It seemed as if our leaders had been mesmerized.

It is not necessary to rehearse all the sorry tale of events leading up to an examination of Ford's doctrinal standing because they have been documented so well by other writers.*

*The author recommends the Standish brothers' book Adventism Challenged for an excellent account of the Australasian Division's march to apostasy. It may be obtained from:

Hartland Publications

P 0 Box 1, Rapidan, VA, 22733, USA

Neither is it desirable to divert too far away from our pursuit of the methods used by leadership, first to cloak the dagger of apostasy and second, to follow the outworking of a form of governmental control described by Mrs. White as "kingly power."

Suffice it to say, Pastor R. R. Frame, then president of the Division, eventually and reluctantly agreed to a group of concerned ministers and laymen meeting with the Biblical Research Institute of Australasia, to put their case in the presence of Dr. Ford (see Appendix for names of participants). Two meetings were held, on the third and fourth of February, 1976. The irony of the situation is, that this institute had been established to examine "new light" and protect the church against the intrusion of heresy. In Ford's case, the BRI had made no attempt to examine his theology. Now the concerned brethren were virtually on trial as they presented the historic Adventist position on doctrines vital to the mission of Seventh-day Adventists.

As Ford defended his theology, it became apparent to the older concerned men that he was expressing similar views to those of a previous chairman of Avondale College Bible Department, the late Pastor W. W. Fletcher. But there were two significant differences: Fletcher correctly admitted that he was out of step with the Spirit of Prophecy. He was eased out of the ministry. Ford attempted to cloak his heresies by expressing full confidence in Mrs. White's writings.

Another difference was to be found in the attitude of the administrators. There had been no sympathy for Fletcher's popular evangelical views, while Ford obviously had the support of influential leaders. According to Dr. R. R. Standish, who participated in the meetings:

“The most heated speech of the day undoubtedly issued from the lips of one of the Conference presidents in defense of Dr. Ford*.” (Adventism Challenged, p. 142).

Dr. R. R. Standish gives credit to Pastors R. Stanley and A. Tolhurst for expressing reservations about what Ford was teaching, but unfortunately they did not press their point. We are told by another witness that Stanley's objections "went over like a lead balloon":

“There was dead silence from the members of the BRI.” (Anchor No. 7, p. 2).

(See Appendix for an eyewitness account.) 

* Following a heated attack by Pastor Rex Moe on the editor of Anchor magazine, (Avondale Memorial Church business meeting September 27, 1987) Pastors G. Bumside and O. K. Anderson identified the conference president who "heatedly" defended Ford, as Rex Moe.

Among the Institute's findings, particularly in the areas of the sanctuary, the age of the earth, and inspiration, they found:

1.    That ... Dr. Desmond Ford ably demonstrated that such stances as he takes which appear to diverge from what some senior men hold as "Present Truth" can be justified by reference to majority positions taken by current Seventh-day Adventist authors and scholars.

2.    The senior ministers (as represented by their speakers) were somewhat unaware of the movements in Adventist thought and style of doctrinal presentation in recent years, a fact which explains their reaction to some contemporary expositions (quoted in Adventism Challenged, p. 151).

In retrospect, it is plain to see that the Administration had abused the very purpose for which the Biblical Research Institute was named, for they found in favor of Ford on non-biblical grounds: namely, what some scholars had written and taught. Later, some in the Institute realized the terrible implication of being seen to accept doctrine on the authority of man, so the minutes were amended to add "the Bible and the Spirit of Prophecy" as a basis for Ford's stand.

This statement was later shown to be no more than a face saving device, as Ford was fired following Glacier View simply because he could not support his stand from Inspiration.

Further, their findings illustrate the tremendous inroads such books as Questions on Doctrine and Movement of Destiny had made into the thinking of Australasian leadership. They admitted that there had been a "movement away" from our historic doctrines and then condemned our senior ministers for being unaware of the shift.

The secretary of the Biblical Research Institute revealed to some extent the political opposition behind the grudging assent given the meeting, by "asserting that the whole concern was really simply a personal attack upon Dr. Desmond Ford"* (Adventism Challenged, p. 149). This disgraceful but revealing remark was immediately protested and then quickly withdrawn (ibid.).

So it was, that Ford and those who defended him all continued in their jobs, ostensibly to uphold and advance historic Bible based Adventism, when in fact they had declared to the church that they upheld the "doctrines of men." To this very day, all of them who remain as active workers, retain positions of prominence in administration or in educational fields.

* The Standish brothers do not reveal the identity of the person making this statement. Other eyewitnesses have identified him as the secretary of the Institute and this has been confirmed by R. Standish in conversation with the author. This is an important point in establishing the biased attitude of the BRI toward Ford. Other witnesses claim that the secretary spoke in much stronger terms, accusing the concerned men of conducting a "personal vendetta" against Ford.

End Chapter 17

Chapters 18  - The Jewel is Plucked

By the end of 1976, Pastor R. R. Frame had opted out of the controversy by resigning the presidency of the Australasian Division, handing over the reins of Division leadership to Pastor K. Parmenter. As secretary of the Division at the time of the February BRI meetings, Parmenter had taken a leading part in exonerating Dr. Ford.

It soon became apparent that the "new theology" espoused by Ford was prospering under a sympathetic administration. The editor of the Australasian Record and Australasian Signs of the Times, himself one of the BRI Committee, cooperated to the full by affording generous space in these magazines for the furthering of Fordian theology. It is not surprising then, that conference presidents soon got the message and provided Avondale's ministerial graduates with cozy enclaves from which they were able to freely dispense their new-found bargains in "cheap grace," and salvation in sin. It was as if Adventism had suddenly burst forth from the restraining bonds placed around it by ignorant pioneers and a false prophetess.

The possibilities of church growth as a result of abolishing the restraints of obedience to God's law must have loomed large in their vision of a popular and successful Evangelical church. Love, not doctrine, would be their key to success from now on. But little did they realize that within some three years, their oracle would be fired and homeland church growth [in Australia] would plunge to the point of virtual stagnation.

It is not surprising then, that their new-found gospel of "love" was not large enough to encompass "stubborn" ministers who persisted in supporting the now discredited historic Adventism. In March 1977, a group of concerned brethren led by veteran evangelist J. W. Kent, succeeded in meeting with Division president Parmenter, Division and Union leaders, and Dr. Ford. We will let the Standish brothers describe the meeting:

“On this occasion, the Concerned Brethren were informed that this meeting would be the last time they could approach leadership as a group. In the meeting, Dr. Ford firmly maintained his erroneous position, in spite of clear statements read to him from the Spirit of Prophecy. At the conclusion, the Division president and chairman, in ending the meeting, declared himself for Dr. Ford, saying that never before had Dr. Ford stood so high in his estimation as the present. He also stated that he himself had problems in regard to our doctrine of the Sanctuary. Then turning his head slightly in the direction of Pastor Burnside, he [Parmenter] warned in an intimidatory tone that if the attacks on Dr. Ford continued, he would have them [the Concerned Brethren] dealt with.... In an earlier meeting the senior Concerned Brethren had been forcefully reminded by the Division president that Robert Brinsmead had been disfellowshiped, not for doctrinal deviation but for opposition to church authority.” (Adventism Challenged, p. 280).

(Pastor A. P. Cooke, veteran evangelist, who was at this meeting confirmed the above report.)

With such arbitrary manifestations of "kingly power" and "popery" at Division level, it is not surprising that conference presidents and others down the hierarchal line of power displayed similar conduct. Pastor O. K. Anderson, a veteran retiree living near Avondale, had already received a letter of censure from the then president of the North New South Wales Conference. It was written in response to Ford's complaints that Anderson had been counselling with some of his students at Avondale College. Part of the letter read:

“I have carefully studied the position taken by the theology department of Avondale College. I see very little conflict, and certainly no major conflict, between the emphasis and that which I have stood for and preached for the last twenty years. . . .

“I would like to state in conclusion that I will make recommendation for your name to be included in the preaching plans for this conference, when I have evidence that you have dissociated yourself from the misrepresentation and subsequent attacks upon the theology department of Avondale College and upon Des Ford in particular [meaning he had removed Anderson from the preaching plan]. You see, Brother Anderson, you have been too wise a counsellor and too long a servant in the cause of God, to go down in these latter years of your life as one who supports unscholarly research and misrepresentation. I appeal to you to endeavor, with all your might to endeavor to understand what Dr. Ford is endeavoring to say, without forming conclusions at every line and sentence.”* (Dated December 22, 1976, signed by Athal Tolhurst.) 

* It should be noted that Tolhurst was not creating a precedent in acting on Ford's complaints.

Pastor 0. K. Anderson told the author that during the early 1970s, president Rex Moe, while on the Avondale College Board, had telephoned him requesting that he refrain from disturbing Ford's students by refuting Ford's teaching. Later the Division president, Pastor R. R. Frame, in 1975 had acted on complaints by Ford and issued instructions to the president of the South Australian Conference to prevent Pastor Anderson from preaching at the invitation of the Prospect Church pastor (also reported in Adventism Challenged, p. 319). So it is apparent, that well before the BRI meetings of February 1976, the Division leadership had decided not only to back Ford, but to use the office of "kingly power" to repress any who stood in the way of "Dr. Seventh-day Adventist."

Time, and Ford's eventual dismissal, have shown who stood in need of advice. At the time of writing, Pastor Anderson has not received an apology for this example of gross misuse of "kingly power" by incompetent leaders, nor has the ban on his preaching been officially lifted. Less than a year earlier, at the February BRI meetings, Tolhurst had cautiously expressed concern over Ford's teachings. Failure of Division leadership to act on his cue had apparently not been lost on Tolhurst. Was he now giving them a practical demonstration of his undoubted loyalty by backing Ford?

Other presidents soon followed suit. Within two years, the president of Greater Sydney Conference, Pastor K. Bullock had instructed the ministers of his conference by letter to deny Pastors J. W. Kent and G. Burnside the use of their pulpits. Once again, the reason behind the ban was to protect the jewel in the crown of Australian Adventism, Desmond Ford. He had been exposed in a pamphlet written by the two pastors for retailing the Plymouth Brethren and Jesuit-inspired futuristic interpretation of the man of sin in his thesis for Manchester University. (For contents of letter dated December 18, 1978, see Adventism Challenged, p. 316.)

By this time, Ford was on loan to the theology department of Pacific Union College. No doubt it was with some pride that the Australasian administration had agreed to allow "Dr. Seventh-day Adventist" to share his "advanced" doctrinal insights with less "enlightened" Adventists in North America.

But in the providence of God, it was not realized that this decision was soon to lead to a time of trouble such as the Australasian Division had never seen. It is now a matter of history that those entrusted with the preservation of the faith in North America took their ordination vows far more seriously than their counterparts in Australasiaor, as seen in hindsight, some at least wanted to appear to take their responsibilities seriously.

At the now-historic Glacier View meetings of August 1980, Ford's position, which he had been given six months to reconsider, was found to be doctrinally unacceptable. His main problem revolved around Adventism's sanctuary message and consequently the related and very important area of righteousness by faith (see Ministry magazine, October 1980, for official report). It will be remembered that in the above area of doctrine, Ford had been exonerated by the Australasian leadership in 1976.

Strangely, Ford's affection for the Roman Catholic invention of original sin and its corollary, a make-believe Saviour who did not inherit our human nature, did not appear to be an issue. Perhaps this is an indication that most of the Adventist ministry had been so dazzled by authors like L. E. Froom, that they failed to see the deadly connection between the heresy of the "unfallen nature" and righteousness by the kind of faith which does not require obedience.

What a shock it must have been to the administration of the Australasian Division when president Parmenter was instructed to pluck the jewel out of their "kingly" crown! It was now the credibility of the Australasian Division leadership which was at stake. And had not the president himself asserted to the Concerned Brethren that he also had problems in regard to the sanctuary doctrine?

President Parmenter now bent over backward to save Ford and salvage what little credibility might be left for the leadership. He went so far as to publicly plead with Ford to compromise his considered beliefs by holding them "in abeyance and not discussed unless at sometime in the future they might be found compatible with the positions and beliefs of the Seventh-day Adventist Church" (Ministry Magazine, October 1980).

And so the Adventist world was treated to the spectacle of a Division president pleading with a man to remain in the role of keeper of the faith knowing full well that he did not believe in what God's Messenger has identified as the foundation of the Adventist message (Ev 221). And while being supported by the sacred tithe, he was invited to deliberately refrain from preaching the three angels' messages in all their fullness and beauty. And then, horror of horrors, the president makes known his implied expectation that the time will come when the church's doctrinal positions may change sufficiently to allow Ford to preach the very heresies for which he had just been fired.* 

* In view of some subsequent publications of the SDA Church written by Morris Venden, Helmut Ott's book, Perfect in Christ and the general acceptance of Fordian teaching on righteousness by faith in the South Pacific Division, Parmenter's expectation of "compatibility" must surely have been realized ere now. It would be encouraging to know that Ford rejected such a hypocritical invitation.

But, that does not appear to be so. The secretary of the Australasian Division, Pastor R. W. Taylor circulated an undated leaflet explaining the circumstances of Ford's dismissal. It told how Ford had met with president Neal C. Wilson and vice-president L. L. Bock and promised to refrain from speaking on doctrines unique to Adventism. That would, of course, include the sanctuary, investigative judgment and the Spirit of Prophecy. So it does appear, according to Taylor, that Ford accepted Parmenter's offer. But Taylor claims that Wilson and Bock said that it was improper for a minister of the SDA Church to be silent on two such distinctive matters of doctrine.

Such a proper decision highlights the fundamental weakness that had become almost endemic to top Australasian leadership. They had simply lost sight of the church's mission to preach all three angels' messages. What a picture! Here is a Division leader telling Ford to stay on and be silent, while world leaders tell Ford that it's no use being a Seventh-day Adventist minister unless he preaches the unique message entrusted to Adventism.**

** This fundamental weakness, denoting lack of true purpose, remains in the South Pacific Division to this day. Pastor D. B. Hills, president of the Trans-Australia Union, in defending presidents against the charge that they knowingly employ Fordian ministers, makes this astounding admission:-"The leadership of the church that I am associated with are fully aware that there are people who don't teach error, but also don't teach all the truths of the Word of God" (letter to H. H. Meyers dated February 1, 1989).

So it was, that the many loyal Adventists who had expressed their deep concerns over the inroads of heresy through the Administration's protection of Ford had been vindicated. Naturally, they could expect the issue to be settled once and for all and look forward to their church utilizing its energies and facilities fully in the proclamation of the "everlasting gospel." Pastor Athal Tolhurst, president of the North New South Wales Conference apparently thought so. He called a meeting of regional churches to be held in the large Avondale College auditorium. No doubt, encouraged by the top-level decision against Ford's theology, he recounted the events leading up to and at Glacier View, and enthusiastically proclaimed himself for the old-time religion. But he was in for a shock! Not all his listeners agreed with him, for he was right on the home ground of Fordism.

Within a short time a meeting of the Australian Forum* was convened in the College. Two theology lecturers who had attended the Glacier View meetings gave quite a different version of proceedings. They let it be known that Ford had many supporters at Glacier View and that the decision to fire Ford had been neither unanimous nor popular. These two men were delegated (obviously with Pastor Parmenter's permission) to travel around the Division spreading their disquieting story to the workers. In the process, much sympathy was generated for Ford. 

* Adventist Forums:

The Association of Adventist Forums is a lay organization whose purpose is "to encourage thoughtful persons of SDA orientation to examine and discuss freely ideas and issues relevant to the church in all its aspects and to its members as Christians in society." It publishes Spectrum, a journal of essays, book reviews, art and poetry. Organized in 1967, it framed its constitution after extensive consultation with G. C. officials, chaired by N. C. Wilson, then vice-president of the North American Division. At the 1967 Annual Council, the North American Division Committee on Administration recognized the organization, stating, as reported in Review and Herald, January 11, 1968, that "we express sympathy with the stated aims and objectives of the proposed association" and "our desire [is] to cooperate as far as Possible in the development of any means which will serve to make this relationship more meaningful and actually beneficial" (SDA Encyclopedia, p. 87).

It was soon perceived by many that Fordism was still alive and well in Australasia. God in His mercy had given the leadership a marvelous opportunity to admit their terrible mistake, to repent and turn the church around in the direction of historic Adventism. But pride and use of "kingly power," the hallmarks of papal-like government reestablished in the General Conference in 1903, had now become the norm in the Australasian Division. Elder Figuhr's advice given in Melbourne back in the mid-1950s, regarding the selection of leaders, had long since become common practice. Harmony and unity, a political formula for success, had become paramount. Therefore, no admission of errors of judgment or wrongful action, particularly against loyal watchmen, must ever reach the ears of the laity. All must appear to be well with the Seventh-day Adventist Church.

 

"If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him." Mercy and love and wisdom are to be found in God; but many who profess to know Him have turned from the One in whom our hope of eternal life is centered, and have educated themselves to depend upon their erring and fallible fellowmen. They are crippled spiritually when they do this; for no man is infallible, and his influence may be misleading. He who trusts in man not only leans upon a broken reed, and gives Satan an opportunity to introduce himself, but he hurts the one in whom the trust is placed; he becomes lifted up in his estimation of himself, and loses the sense of his dependence upon God. Just as soon as man is placed where God should be, he loses his purity, his vigor, his confidence in God's power. Moral confusion results, because his powers become unsanctified and perverted. He feels competent to judge his fellowmen and he strives unlawfully to be a god over them.

Ellen G. White

Testimonies to Ministers, p. 376

End Chapter 18

CHAPTER 19 -  Conflicting Claims

The residents of Australia's largest city, Sydney, awoke to another workaday morning on May 2, 1983. But many Seventh-day Adventists were in for a second awakening, albeit a rude one, before the day was much older.

As they opened the pages of the Sydney Daily Telegraph newspaper, their eyes were transfixed by the bold headline, "SEVENTH-DAY CRISIS." Sure enough, the double page spread was all about troubles in their beloved church. The writer, Ken Anderson, described himself both as a writer for the Telegraph and as a "dissident Adventist minister" who expected to get the sack as a result of his revelations regarding the theological problems and unsavory practices of the Seventh-day Adventist Church.

"Did you know that the only people entitled to records of the legal Association and Trust Funds of the Seventh-day Adventist Church are the top administrators?" he asked.

Anderson claimed that his article was based on the results of an investigation "with both dissident scholars and ministers and established church leaders" and upon examination of books, documents, balance sheets and "other financial records not normally made available to the public and on an authoritative survey."

“The survey also shows that 67% of members have been influenced by Des Ford, the pastor who taught theology to hundreds of students at Avondale College, including Michael Chamberlain.”

In defense, secretary of the Division, Pastor Ron Taylor was reported as playing down the church's problems:

“About two or three years ago a number of members, not a majority by any means, were asking, "What's going on?" but not today. People are saying now, "We know where we stand so let's get on with it."

As for suggestions that the lay people of the church were victims of a bureaucratic hierarchy, the Division communication director, Pastor Russell Kranz also got into the act:

“The Adventist Church is possibly the most democratic in the world. Lay members have a representative form of government right to the very top.”*

 * How different is Kranz's claim for Adventist Church government from that of the administration! It will be shown in chapter 25, how the G. C. endeavored to convince a U. S. District Court that the Adventist Church is governed by a hierarchy.

Taylor then denied any flirtation of the church with Fordian doctrine:

“If Des Ford's beliefs were accepted they would be destructive to the church because he is hitting at areas of belief which the church holds to be fundamental.”

(While Taylor's reasoning is perfectly correct, the reader will recall that the Division, through the Biblical Research Institute, had already accepted Ford's doctrinal stance on the grounds that he was in agreement with other Adventist writers and scholars (see chapter 17). This finding has never been rescinded officially.) As if this public airing of Adventist "dirty washing" were not embarrassing enough, Adventists were again subjected to another double-page dose of "investigative" journalism the following day:

“Australian-born dissident church man, Dr. Des Ford, says the Seventh-day Adventist Church faces a future in which it will be composed of those who don't care and those who don't think.

“It needs to let lay people have a much bigger say in decision making. The Bible teaches that there are no masters, that we are all brethren and every church member is on equal footing with any minister and every administrator.”

The futility of equivocation should be apparent to the reader. In this case, the administration has failed to please both Fordians and true Adventists alike. Truly, "no man can serve two masters." Other aspects of the "investigative" report informed the public of the Davenport scandal and the supposed irregularities of Mrs. E. G. White as a prophetess. Interestingly, no article of objection by the Division appeared in the Daily Telegraph over the next few days, nor does it appear that any "Letter of Objection" was written to its editor.

Obviously, such reporting was not inspired by those who had an abiding love for God's remnant church. The term "dissident" is correctly applied to such informers. But pride and "kingly power" were not to be unseated by such malicious exposure. The cloak would be drawn even tighter and the time would come when the administration of the Australasian Division would transfer the term "dissidents" from those who confessed, to those who opposed the administration's devious ways.

It is not surprising then, that confidence in the administration of the church slumped to an all-time low. This distrust was reflected by an inordinate increase in apostasies which had brought church growth to a virtual standstill. By 1982, the annual increase for the two home Unions had declined to less than four hundred, while the statistical report for 1983 was entirely omitted from the Australasian Record. In 1984, the Trans-Australia Union Conference actually sustained a membership loss of 166 souls. (When studying statistical reports of the South Pacific Division, it should be noted that by far the largest growth rate is in the Island Unions.)

 

End Chapter 19

 

CHAPTER 20  - Deception, or Wishful Thinking?

It was into such confusion that Pastor Walter R. L. Scragg entered when he assumed the presidency of the Australasian Division in 1984. Would he set about to remove the "dagger" from the bleeding heart of Adventism? Would he insist on the ministry and the church's educators upholding and teaching the three angels' messages in the manner of the pioneers who had so successfully proclaimed the everlasting gospel in all its fullness? Would he give the trumpet a "certain sound" with a clarion call to "come out of Babylon"? Would he encourage his flock to live sanctified lives in readiness for that great moment when their names must inevitably appear before the great Judge?

Apparently the president did not see things that way. It was not long before he was soothing the membership with joyful messages. The May 5, 1984 edition of the Record contained a message from the president titled, "Arms of Joy." After copious doses of the New English Bible's version of biblical examples of joy, Pastor Scragg was encouraged to dispense a little of his own:

Joy comes from accepting the positive action of God, on your own behalf, another's behalf, on the church's behalf. The record accessions of our church in recent years, the perilous but successful stemming of the currents of false doctrine, the upsurge in interest in personal holiness, the fast fulfilling of the signs of our Lord's return, these create joy for God's action on behalf of his church.

If such a statement were all true, it would indeed be cause for great rejoicing. As we have already seen, church growth in the homelands was almost nonexistent. If indeed, the homelands had shared in these record accessions (for they were virtually confined to Unions in the mission field), this would only serve to highlight the extraordinary increase in apostasies. As for the successful stemming of the currents of "false doctrine," the president must have been almost alone in noticing it, unless of course, his perception of false doctrine differed from those who adhered to historic Adventism.

The author of this book wrote two letters to the president asking him to identify the "false doctrine" to which he referred. But to this day, he has declined to identify even one. Many are still looking in bewilderment for evidences of the increased interest in "personal holiness, an attribute which rightly applies to personages of the Godhead but which has been misappropriated by the "Man of Sin."

Later in the same year, October 4, 1984, an article appeared in the Adventist Review titled "Progress After Pain." It was a report on the Australasian Division compiled by editor Dr. William Johnsson. He presented to the world a Division whose doctrinal controversy was apparently a thing of the past. But President Scragg was quick to realize that here, for the first time, was a specific announcement to the world of Adventism, of past serious doctrinal problems with all its attendant pain. He quickly moved to minimize the admission by placing an explanatory letter in the Review, November 8, 1984:

“In understanding the situation [as described by Johnsson], readers should be aware that the "internal wrangling," "bitter spirit" and "brother arguing against brother" were limited to a relatively small number of people in a few restricted areas.”

Possibly the most generous assessment of such a statement is to attribute it to the ignorance of one who had not been present in the Australasian Division during those years of "pain." But the pain was to continue. Loyal Adventists had to sit in their pews and endure sermons that not only lacked the certainties of the judgment-hour message, but in many cases, listen to outright attacks on our distinctive doctrines and on the pioneers who propounded them.

The obvious lack of doctrinal and prophetic emphasis in our pulpits lent credibility to a widely held belief that such practice conformed to leadership's policy. Is it a mere coincidence that some of our leaders attended Heppenstall's Avondale lectures in 1957/1958? (See chapter 15). It is no wonder, then, that groups of sincere Adventists banded together in order to hear the straight message. Soon, message-hungry members were flocking to hear the full gospel preached in meetings described by some administrators as "unauthorized." Instead of recognizing the symptoms of spiritual starvation and applying the obvious remedy, President Scragg led his officers in opposing those who "illegally" dispensed the words of life, as witness the following example:

For many years, Australian brothers Colin and Russell Standish have been employed in education and medical work respectively, by Seventh-day Adventist organizations abroad. Periodically, while at home on furloughs, they have been giving the trumpet a certain sound while conducting meetings at the invitation of discerning Adventist groups. Usually, they were denied the use of church facilities and venues for such meetings. While these meetings brought much spiritual joy and encouragement to many members, they also brought much unhappiness to some presidents who felt that they had been endowed with the divine right of determination as to whom their members may listen.

Following complaints by the then president of North New South Wales, A.D.C. Currie and Trans-Tasman Union Conference president Athal Tolhurst, concerning "unauthorized" meetings by Dr. Colin Standish, Division president Walter Scragg decided to act. He forwarded a copy of Currie's letter of complaint (with its false accusationssee Anchor, November 1985, "No Fruit for the Master") to the president of the North American Division, C. E. Bradford. For good measure, he included a covering letter of his own which said in part:

“I regret to have to write to you regarding the activities of one of our Australian brethren who is working in North America. However we feel that you should know that the activities of Colin Standish in our Division are far from constructive. You can see the nature and extent of the problem and the way it troubles the church in Australasia. I believe it would be well if the administrative body which governs the Hartland Institute should be advised of the activities of Dr. Standish in the hope that they might be able to give him counsel on how to conduct himself while on furlough.

“There is a problem with individuals such as Colin Standish who are not under direct conference direction but relate rather to the Association of Self-Supporting Industries. I recognize that it is a difficult and complex issue but we would like as much assistance as you are able to give to endeavor to control some of his activities.”

(Wahroonga, March 19, 1985.)

Thankfully, such ill advice was not accepted, for no attempt was made to apply the rod of "kingly power." Dr. Standish continues in his position as president of Hartland Institute and continues to exercise his God-given commission to preach the gospel according to the light conferred upon His remnant church.

But this striking rebuff has not deterred president Scragg in his quest for authoritarian control over his vast section of popedom.* He has consistently evidenced a zealous watch over itinerant speakers that would be highly laudable were it applied to those who are bringing Babylonian doctrines into our church. But, as an example, we will continue with the South Pacific Division's apparent preoccupation with disciplining Dr. Standish. 

* According to Pastor George Burnside, who attended the New Orleans General Conference, president N. C. Wilson several times referred to his Division presidents as "Cardinals." (Conversation between Burnside and author in 1988. This is corroborated by Dr. R. R. Standish in a conversation with the author, 1989.)

The Hartland Institute, a self-supporting Adventist ministry in Virginia, U.S.A., has sponsored many Firm Foundation conferences throughout North America, Europe and Australasia. Dr. Colin Standish is the president of Hartland. Some sixteen months prior to coming to Australia, Dr. Standish approached the administration of the South Pacific Division for their support. But the Division president let Dr. Standish know that the Firm Foundation meetings were not needed, nor were they wanted. This is quite understandable in the light of the president's false claim of "the successful stemming of the currents of false doctrine" (Record, May 5, 1984, "Arms of Joy").

The Firm Foundation meetings went ahead, nevertheless, during the summer of 1986/1987. One president desperately attempted to discredit the campaign as a means by which local conference finances could be depleted. An Anchor reporter said:

“In the West Australian Conference, each minister and elder was circulated with a letter falsely stating that the Firm Foundation conferences took large sums of money from Europe for Hartland Institute. (Yet, four months earlier, Dr. Colin Standish had personally answered this charge to the South Pacific Division president.)

“The specific charge was that 800,000 guilders (about $500,000) was taken from Holland in donation.... The facts are that about $400.00 worth of books were sold and this was the only money received and taken out.” (Anchor No. 10, p. 2).

Such a flagrant example of irresponsible reporting is probably indicative of the desperation of a Division that has lost its vision and its way. But it seems that by early 1989, President Scragg could at last savor the satisfaction of being able to announce a successful result to his persistent efforts.

The occasion was a workers' retreat at Yarrahapini, NSW, where he announced that Colin Standish's ministerial credentials had been revoked. The news soon spread throughout the homeland Unions with the rapidity of a scandal. Had the report been the result of a misdemeanor, one wonders just how people whose priority should be the preaching of the three angels' messages, would find the time and the inclination to damage the reputation of the ministry by spreading such appalling news.

But once again, the report was nothing more than a rumor spawned by the wishful thinking of some whose priorities undoubtedly must be suspect. Several letters of protest have since been written by members of the Standish family to Division, Union and conference leadership, some of which have been circulated extensively among leadership.

As many of the concerns expressed therein are indicative of the general situation now prevailing in the South Pacific Division, some have been reprinted in full or in part in the Appendix. Read them while keeping in mind the type of organization described by Mrs. White as a "kingly power" and by A. T, Jones variously as a "czarist" oligarchy and a "papal" hierarchy.

 

The souls who love God, who believe in Christ, and who eagerly grasp every ray

of light, will see light, and rejoice in the truth. They will communicate the light. They will grow in holiness. Those who receive the Holy Spirit will feel the chilling atmosphere that surrounds the souls of others by whom these great and solemn-realities are unappreciated and spoken against. They feel that they are in the council of the ungodly, of men who stand in the way of sinners, and sit in the seat of the scornful....

Yet many have listened to the truth spoken in demonstration of the Spirit, and they have not only refused to accept the message, but they have hated the light. These men are parties to the ruin of souls. They have interposed themselves between heavensent light and the people. They have trampled upon the word of God and are doing despite to His Holy Spirit.

Ellen G. White

Testimonies to Ministers, pp. 90-91

 

End Chapter 20

CHAPTER  21  - Hierarchy in Action

In keeping with the Adventists' desperate attempts to convince a United States District Court that the government of the S.D.A. Church is papal in structure (which will be described in chapter 25), we may expect to find an authoritarian attitude extending right down the hierarchal chain of command through Division presidents, Union presidents, conference presidents and thence through conference workers and church pastors. Let us briefly look at the chain of command in the South Pacific Division, not only to see if it is authoritarian in nature, but also to find out its true objective. Does it advance the cause espoused by the Adventist pioneers or does it aid the slide toward Rome?

We have noted at some length, Division president Scragg's attitude to Dr. Colin Standish's speaking at "unauthorized" meetingshe was unappreciative. Yet Colin's audiences were very enthusiastic, which simply adds up to the fact that they were listening to messages which they seldom hear.

Similarly, other visiting and local preachers find their "unauthorized" meetings in considerable demand. One such preacher is veteran retired evangelist, Pastor Austin P. Cooke. In this connection, let us now look at the Union presidents and discover their administrative attitudes. Do they render allegiance to God and the divine commission given to the remnant church, or do they bow to the wishes of men?

We have two Union Conferences in the homelands of the South Pacific Divisionthe Trans-Tasman Union with headquarters in Sydney and the Trans-Australia Conference, controlled from Melbourne. Both the Union presidents, Pastor Harold Harker and Pastor Desmond Hills respectively, know what historic Adventism is all about and to the best of the author's knowledge, are quite capable of preaching it. Indeed, both have publicly stated in the hearing of the author, their unswerving allegiance to preaching the three angels' messages.*

* Special Business meeting called in attempt to silence Anchor magazine, Avondale Memorial Church (September 27, 1987).

Seventh-day Adventist retired ministers receive their honorary credentials through the Union in which they reside. It is the president's duty to know about the suitability of those to whom his committee issues credentials. There are certain guidelines laid down in the Church Manual regarding church discipline. From page 158 of the Church Manual we read:

No individual member or group of members should start a movement or form an organization or seek to encourage a following for the attainment of any objective, or the teaching of any doctrine or message not in harmony with the fundamental religious objectives and teachings of the Seventh-day Adventist Church.

Now, surely one would not be presumptuous in regarding Dr. Desmond Ford's Good News Australia magazine as the official organ of an organization that falls within this category, for Ford is still (early 1989) a member of the S.D.A. Church.* 

*The fact that Dr. Ford is allowed to remain a member of the S.D.A. Church while contravening conditions of membership laid down in the Church Manual, is another issue to which President Neil Clayton Wilson apparently turns a blind eye.

We have already noted at some length (chapter 14) that a retired minister, Pastor V. Heise, credentialed in the T.T.U.C., openly supported Ford's organization by contributing an article to Good News Australia (September 1988). Surely any member, especially a minister, who so boldly identifies with the ideals of Ford's organization cannot, according to the Church Manual, be considered a loyal church member, let alone hold ministerial credentials issued by the S.D.A. Church.

On February 23, 1989, the author wrote to the president of the Trans-Tasman Union Conference expressing concern. Enclosed was a copy of Heise's article. In reply, Pastor Harker attempted to dodge the main issuethat of public support for Fordwith the following diversionary remarks:

“There was nothing in the article that could be seen "as cause for disciplinary action." . . . I also do not see Pastor Vern Heise, who is retired, forming a new organization or trying to get a following.” (letter March 16, 1989).

However, to his credit, he did eventually get around to addressing the real concern of the author by noting before closing that:

“It does tell where sympathies lie and this should be noted.” (ibid.).

During the latter part of May 1989, the T.T.U.C. executive met in session and Pastor Heise's credentials were left intact. But those of veteran Pastor Austin Cooke, who publicly upholds historic Adventism and denounces error, were revoked (Letter from Harker to Cooke, May 23, 1989).

Meanwhile, in the Trans-Australia Union Conference, a lay member of the S.D.A. church had been recently admitted into church employment as a high school teacher. He also had publicly supported Ford by writing articles appearing in Good News Australia. On January 26, 1989, the author wrote to T.A.U.C. president, Pastor D. Hills expressing general concern:

“that so many of our administrators knowingly employ men whose interpretation of truth coincides with Des Ford's reformationist concept of righteousness by faith and other views aberrant to Seventh-day Adventism. Need I remind you of the great influence our teachers have upon our youth and the significance of placing Fordian teachers in our church schools?”

In reply (February 1, 1989) Pastor Hills stated:

“It is not true that "many of our administrators knowingly employ men whose interpretations of the truth coincide with Des Ford's etc.” Then followed an astounding admission:

“The leadership of the church that I am associated with are fully aware that there are people who don't preach error but also don't preach all of the Word of God.”

He then defended the teacher on the grounds that his president didn't "know of this church member teaching views held by Des Ford or withholding truths upheld by the Seventh-day Adventist Church." Apparently these remarks were primarily based on the fact that the teacher in question had taught Sabbath School classes and came "with positive recommendations as a loyal Seventh-day Adventist."

In this case, the president of the T.A.U.C. entirely ignored the point of concern that the teacher was sufficiently supportive of Ford to declare his position publiclyso he ignored it. The author replied, February 17, 1989, pointing out that:

“You have ducked the question of employing Fordian sympathizers.... May I point out to you that you are being given the opportunity to give credibility to your numerous affirmations [of loyalty to Adventists' perception of truth].”

In reply, President Hills sought to minimize the impact of his admission by stating that:

“You need to note that the statement was made with reference to "people" and you are not correct in presuming that that's specifically stated "church employees."

But, the careful reader will note that the concern expressed in the correspondence has been only about people employed by the church.

By now, it must be evident that in a hierarchal system of administration, even though an administrator may be inclined to act to uphold the standards required for the preservation of Adventist beliefs and ideals, it is most unlikely that subordinates will act against the direction of their superiors. If they were so in the habit, it is not likely that they would have attained their position on the ladder of hierarchy. But the end result is that both the two homeland Unions are administratively tolerant of Fordian supportersa fact which contrasts with their attitude shown toward some ministers who are openly loyal to historic Adventism.

We now come down the ladder of hierarchy to conference level. In the North New South Wales Conference, of which Pastor Rex Moe is president, some curious methods have been used in "advancing" God's work. A recent spate of disfellowshipments and resignations indicate the surfacing of an undercurrent of disenchantment with what is seen as evidence of "kingly," "papal like" power.

Pastor Moe took upon himself the task of shutting down the Anchor magazine.* During a special business meeting of the Avondale Memorial Church, September 27, 1987, he claimed that the Anchor's charges that the Australasian Division had accepted apostasy when they had exonerated Ford at the Biblical Research grounds Institute's at that time Ford had not declared his apostate position.

Yet the editor of Anchor was able to produce two witnesses (who were in attendance at the BRI meetings) to say that President Rex Moe had vigorously defended Ford, especially in connection with Ford's claim that the earth's age was considerably more than 6,000 years. Moe hotly objected to this testimony, saying that he had always been comfortable with Sister White's positionthat the earth is around 6,000 years old.

But the editor had come into possession of a curious set of papers which President Moe, through his committee, had arranged to circulate quietly among his workers. These papers were written and prepared by one of his ministers, Pastor S. R. Goldstone, who had taken the liberty of entitling them "The Seventh-day Adventist Church Believes . . ." (he had beaten the G. C. ministerial association to the punch with their book "Seventh-day Adventists Believe. .. " ).

* A letter to the editor of Anchor magazine appeared in "Anchor Lines," February 1987 edition: "A friend of mine from Glen Innes (North New South Wales) claims that the president told church members there, that "they" were going to deal with the Editor and shut the Anchor up."

Further light on the wishful intentions of the administration is revealed in a South Queensland church bulletin dated August 15, 1987:

"Action was taken by the church where he [the editor] holds membership, to apply church discipline if he continues to publish Anchor.

In the event, such action was not initiated until February 27, 1988, over six months after the "event" was announced. 

A motion to disfellowship Meyers failed by 101:54 (see Anchor No. 19, pg 13 for report).

The Anchor magazine was brought into being in April 1985 to uphold historic Adventism and expose error. Its first editor was H. H. Meyers, an Adventist layman with membership at the Avondale Memorial Church. It is presently being edited jointly by Ron and Ula Cable, and its continued success indicates the real need which it and other similar magazines fulfill. Back numbers and current copies may be obtained from:

The Editors, Anchor magazine

P.O.Box 19, KALBAR Queensland 4309 AUSTRALIA

Quite a deal of resource materials accompanied Goldstone's comments on each of the fundamentals. Each section of the fundamentals was preceded with a full page on which appeared a large cautionary notice written in Goldstone's handwriting:

Resource Material only. Please use with discretion.

But preceding a section containing some forty of Mrs. White's quotations bearing on the earth's age, appeared an extra injunction:

Note that the Bible nowhere makes statements regarding the age of the earth. It is adamant that God was the Creator. Where the Bible is silent we ought to be silent.*

*If the Bible nowhere makes statements on the age of the earth, then by the same method of reasoning, it nowhere mentions the year 1844 as the start of the investigative judgment. There is no end to the possibilities of such specious reasoning.

The editor then produced this evidence before the assembled business meeting, showing that some twelve years on from Ford's BRI meetings, we have a president who denies supporting Ford, yet is presently assisting in the distribution of Fordian material which casts doubt not only on the denomination's understanding of the age of the earth, but also by implication, on the Spirit of Prophecy.

The fact that this sort of material is being circulated to the ministry with a caution as to how it is used, holds grave implications, for obviously it is not intended for the eyes of the laity. But other ideas are quietly injected into the minds of the ministry. In the section dealing with fundamental No. 23, p. 10, relating to our distinctive beliefs on the investigative judgment, Goldstone says,

“The conclusion reached by the consensus of scholars within the Seventh-day Adventist Church is that the Book of Hebrews neither confirms nor denies our belief in the investigative judgment.”

In fairness to Goldstone, we here record that he claims to believe in an investigative judgment but he gets his belief from an overall view of the Biblenot just Hebrews. But even this affirmation gets a watering down:

“I believe the primary purpose of the investigative judgment is to vindicate God's name before His intelligent creatures. God is on trial more than men.” (p. 13).

But his view is strangely at variance with that of the pioneers who regarded the warnings of a personal judgment as a message to be urgently proclaimed.

It is no wonder that the ministry is cautioned over and over again to be discreet in their use of such information!

The next stage in the attempt to silence the Anchor took place just five months later-on February 27, 1988. This time a Special Business meeting of the Avondale Memorial Church was called to consider disciplining the editor, H. H. Meyers, for continuing to publish Anchor. By church standards, this was an illegal meeting, for it contravened the clear rules of the Church Manual:

“No church officer should advise, no committee should recommend, nor should any church vote, that the name of a wrongdoer shall be removed from the church books, until the instruction given by Christ has been faithfully followed.” (Church Manual p. 155).

Christ's instructions, as mentioned in the Church Manual are to be found in Matthew 18. Surely these would require that the church pastor with a church elder would have visited the editor. But it seems that silencing those who "sigh and cry" has such priority that Christ's instructions don't apply, for neither the church pastor nor the president nor anyone delegated by the church came to discuss the matter with editor Meyers.* No one even bothered to ascertain whether or not the time for the disciplinary meeting was convenient to the "erring one."

* Another example of reckless dissemination of false information concerns President Scragg's correspondence concerning the Editor of Anchor.

In responding to a letter from a church member expressing surprise that Meyers had never been visited by the church pastor, Scragg said, "I know that the conference president and church pastors have visited him more than once" (Letter, January 13, 1988). But in reply to persistent correspondence, Scragg had to admit his error: "You are right; there have been no recent pastoral visits to Hilton Meyers" (Letter, April 21, 1988). In fact, there had never been any pastoral visits to Meyers.

However, the president did show his interest by attending the meeting. He sat there and by his silence condoned the efforts to discredit the editor and then watched a motion instigated to have the editor disfellowshiped. But he was in for a surprise! He was forced to witness the scheming and conspiring of some eighteen months come undone. By secret ballot, the motion was lost101 votes to 54.

Had church pastor J. Beamish followed the injunction of Christ and had dialogue with the editor, he could have learned that he had been negotiating for several months with new editors who were about to take over. In the event, the meeting was a big fuss over nothing, for by this time, Meyers was no longer the editor. One cannot escape the conclusion that if similar planning and energy were directed toward spreading the third angel's message, there would be no need for journals like the Anchor.

Pastor Ross Goldstone has since been appointed pastor of the Avondale Memorial Church. Pastor Austin Cooke has had his membership there during the previous eight years of his retirement. Never once in all these years has he been invited to preach in divine service or take a Sabbath School lesson. It is no wonder then, that he commenced fellowshiping in another church, at nearby Boolaroo. There he has been able to participate by teaching Sabbath School lessons.

In November 1988, he applied to have his membership transferred to the Boolaroo church. But, by April 17, 1989, at the time of an Avondale Memorial Church business meeting, his transfer had still not been put to the church for vote. Pastor Cooke requested at this meeting that in view of the inordinate delay, his transfer be put to the vote and settled at that very meeting.

Pastor Goldstone, who chaired the meeting, flatly refused. After difficult attempts to question him, it appeared that he was awaiting advice from the Trans-Tasman Union Conference.

This unusual procedure seems to denote a lack of confidence in a credentialing system that has shown confidence in Pastor Cooke throughout his outstandingly successful evangelistic career. Is this part of a popish pattern in the South Pacific Division to suppress the teaching of established truth? In Pastor Cooke's case, his standing as a church member is under question, simply because he has offended an authoritarian system by moving around the Division giving truth-starved church members the historic Adventist message and denouncing apostasy. In years gone by, such commitment would be lauded by conference presidents. Why not now?

Which brings us to another important sphere of Division influenceAvondale College, and in particular, its theology department. This is the college which was brought into being under the direct guidance of God through Mrs. E. G. White. Our pioneers denied themselves in order to have a "School for Christian Workers." Later it became known as the "Australasian Missionary College" and as such it has been eminently successful. But now it is known as Avondale College, a "college of higher learning." The management still claim to run a "blueprint" college.

This is where young church members train to be Seventh-day Adventist ministers, but having studied Babylonian theology, not all of them know what Seventh-day Adventism should be about. One recent graduate had to ask the meaning of the term, "three angels' messages."

The theology department is very sensitive to criticism. Around the end of 1988, a video tape was produced by a lecturer in evangelism at Avondale College, Pastor Graeme Bradford. It was directed against the preaching of a veteran retired minister who, while exposing apostate Adventism, had brought the college into it. This tape has been quietly circulated around the conferences and played to selected audiences. Although Bradford frequently addresses the veteran by name, he had not bothered to advise him of the tape's existence, let alone afford him the courtesy of seeing it.

Discerning viewers of this video will be grateful for the fact that we now have an unequivocal admission from the theology department that they are in the track of Calvinistic-evangelical theology. Bradford follows Froom's subtle approach in promoting "new theology," raises doubts on the competency of the pioneers by showing that new light demanded that they forsake Arianism, and from this, attempts to have Mrs. E. G. White imply that new light will continue to be revealed (even on accepted truth).

Part of this "new light" appears to be old light revealed by the Roman Catholic Church. Bradford comes down heavily for Augustine's invention of original sin, claiming that we are all born sinners except Christ who, because He didn't sin, must have entered this world with a different nature from ours. But, quite unfairly, he fails to give credit to Augustine for his inventive genius, which runs contrary to scripture (1 John 3:4) and claims that he gets this doctrine (of anti-christ, 1 John 4:3) from the Bible.

Note by Ron: All apostate leaders of the church, always try to demonstrate that because Jesus did not commit sin, He had an advantage over us, so that He could overcome sin and we can’t. That flies in the face of the very mission of Christ, in coming in our sinful human nature, and sacrificing His Divine Nature Holy Spirit ONLY NATURE, which He had eternally with the Father, so as to give it to us as the “highest good, crowning gift that heaven can bestow,” to enable us to overcome as He did. This GIFT OF ALL GIFTS, it the gospel in a nutshell. It is righteousness by faith in a nutshell. This “highest good, crowning gift” levels the playing field between Christ and man. We are to be born again and receive this gift of the Holy Spirit Divine Nature of Christ, which enables us to overcome, for He then abides in us and does the works lest any man should boast. We are invited to partake of His Divine Nature, to wit:

2Pe 1:4 Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.

End note by Ron.

However, can Bradford make the Bible contradict itself? It's quite simple. Rome has already provided him with her Roman corruptions of Scripture and, in keeping with those who promote apostate Adventism, he turns to Rome for help. He reads from Psalms, according to the NIV:

Surely I have been a sinner from birth, sinful from the time my mother conceived me (Psalm 51:5, NIV).

Says Bradford, “That's the word of Godsinner from birth.”

But those who believe that "all scripture is given by inspiration of God" will know that God cannot contradict Himself. He says: "For sin is the transgression of the law" (1 John 3:4). And God's Messenger tells us that this is the only definition of sin in the Bible (GC 493). But God tells us in His Holy Word just what David really did say:

Behold I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me (Psalm 51:5, KJV).

Bradford tries to tell his viewers that the KJV has the same meaning as given in the NIV. Then why did he cite the NIV? The reason is obviousit doesn't. Bradford here shows that he does not believe the SDA Bible Commentary on this text, which says:

David recognizes that children inherit natures with propensities to evil (Vol. 3, p. 755).

Isn't that why God chose Mary to be Christ's motherso that Jesus would inherit a similar nature to that with which you and I started life?

The owner of the NIV copyright is the New York International Bible Society. Their Preface claims that their Bible is "a completely new translation ... made by over 100 scholars" and that it is "trans-denominational," that is, suitable for a variety of denominations because it reflects the philosophy of the Christian Reformed Church and the National Association of Evangelicals. So it is an ecumenical Bible!

As with the KJV, the translators appear to rely on the Masoretic text, but we are advised that there are "variant readings" not necessarily specified by footnotes. As the translators of the KJV also claim to rely on the Masoretic text, then it seems that the NIV translators went elsewhere to translate Psalm 51:5. Was it the Septuagint? Nothe LXX agrees with the Masoretic from which the KJV derives:  

“For, behold I was conceived in iniquities, and in sins did my mother conceive me.” (The Septuagint Greek and English, Bagster).

We must search the NIV Preface again for clues. Here we are told that readings from the Juxta Hebraica of Jerome were occasionally used in the Psalms "where accepted principles of textual criticism showed that one or more of these textual witnesses appeared to provide the correct reading."

Well, that really gives us something to think about, doesn't it? We are told that the translators are associated with the Christian Reformed Church and the National Association of Evangelicals. If a reading seemed doubtful to their religious beliefs they simply searched for a "textual witness that appeared to provide a correct reading," in this case, a reading that would uphold Augustine's invention of original sin.

But even Jerome, a friend and admirer of Augustine, was not able to translate Psalm 51:5 so as to entirely support his friend's invention of original sin as translated in the NIV. A literal translation of his Latin Juxta Hebraica would read something like this:

“Behold, I was born in a condition of blame and in sin my mother conceived me.”

(Recently, the author was browsing through a religious book shop in the Philippines. All the Bibles on display were Roman Catholic publications with the exception of one otherthe NIV.)

In his video, Bradford frequently identifies with the theology of most of the ministry in Australasia, which is not surprising. They too have received ministerial training that is tainted, if not impregnated with Fordism. But Bradford's video reveals another identifying characteristic of a forlorn cause. He conducts an interview with a retired history professor who sets about to discredit our retired evangelist over a minor historical mistake, which he is alleged to have made during a lecture some thirty years back, yes, thirty years ago!

As if that were not puerile enough, this frustrated professor then resorted to a vitriolic attack on God's veteran. He described what he perceived to be one of the evangelist's idiosyncrasies:

“And so he feels free to make what amounts to be defamatory statements ... about people and institutions and does it with an inane neurotic laugh that you would expect to get from a firebug or a saboteur.”

Is this an insight into the kind of "love" that is promoted by a theology that advocates more love and less doctrine?

How deplorable to realize that those who have been entrusted with the training of Seventh-day Adventist ministers have misdirected their time and talents in such destructive pursuits! But even more devastating is the realization that there are presidents and/or other workers around the conferences who encourage such unchristian and un-Adventist-like ventures by disseminating such a destructive video.

One June 8, 1989, during a meeting held to "enlighten" elders of the South Queensland Conference at Kallangur, Pastor Bradford advertised this series of video tapes, assuring the elders that they had approval of South Pacific Division leadership. Conference president David Lawson enthusiastically offered to help in the distribution. Then in the July edition of his conference paper, Focus, Lawson took the opportunity to get Bradford's message to all of his constituents:

If you did not hear Pastor Bradford at the Elders' Meeting, let me suggest that you obtain a set of the videos produced by Avondale College featuring Pastor Bradford.

Truly the experiences of the pioneers could well be emulated by our leaders today. God's Messenger says,

“We are to be established in the faith, in the light of the truth given us in our early experience. . . . We would search the scriptures with much prayer, and the Holy Spirit would bring the truth to our minds.... The power of God would come upon me, and I was enabled clearly to define what is truth and what is error.

“As the points of our faith were thus established, our feet were placed on a solid foundation. We accepted the truth point by point under the demonstration of the Holy Spirit. I would be taken off in vision, and explanations would be given me.... It is the enemy that leads minds off on side-tracks [such as the Bradford video tape]. He is pleased when those who know the truth become engrossed in collecting scriptures to pile around erroneous theories, which have no foundation in truth. The scriptures thus used are misapplied; they were not given to substantiate error, but to strengthen truth.” (Gospel Workers, ed. 1915, 302-303).

 

Unless the church, which is now being leavened with her own backsliding, shall

repent and be converted, she will eat of the fruit of her own doing, until she shall abhor herself. When she resists the evil and chooses the good, when she seeks God with all humility and reaches her high calling in Christ, standing on the platform of eternal truth and by faith laying hold upon the attainments prepared for her, she will be healed. She will appear in her God-given simplicity and purity, separate from earthly entanglements, showing that the truth has made her free indeed. Then her members will indeed be the chosen of God, His representatives.

The time has come for a thorough reformation to take place. When this

reformation begins, the spirit of prayer will actuate every believer and will banish from the church the spirit of discord and strife. Those who have not been living in Christian fellowship will draw close to one another.

Ellen G. White

Testimonies for the Church, Vol. 8, 250-251

 

Note by Ron: Ellen White gave testimony to prove that such a reformation would NEVER take place, when she said that the omega heresy would wax stronger until Jesus comes, and that Ezekiel 9 slaughter and destruction will LITERALLY begin at His church, His Sanctuary, the House of Jacob. 5T 211. She said that Ezekiel 9 will literally be fulfilled, and that it begins at God’s church, as does Ezekiel 9, wherein God says: begin at my sanctuary.

 

Eze 9:6   Slay utterly old and young, both maids, and little children, and women: but come not near any man upon whom is the mark; and begin at my sanctuary. Then they began at the ancient men which were before the house,” while the faithful go forth out of Jerusalem just as they did in the last literal fulfillment of Ezekiel 9 in A.D. 27-70. Isaiah 37:321, 32.

Isa 37:31   And the remnant that is escaped of the house of Judah shall again take root downward, and bear fruit upward: 

Isa 37:32   For out of Jerusalem shall go forth a remnant, and they that escape out of mount Zion: the zeal of the LORD of hosts shall do this. 

 

THERE IS ONE MORE GOING OUT FRIEND! When one joins the SDA church, he/she thinks they have “ARRIVED,” but there is ONE MORE GOING OUT OF A REMNANT NOT ONLY FROM BABYLON, BUT FROM APOSTATE JERUSALEM AS WELL. The final Midnight Loud Cry is to ALL TEN VIRGINS IN ALL CHURCHES. COL, 405-406. It is the voice of God, AND THE VOICE OF THE BRIDE, THE 144,000, that awakens ALL TEN VIRGINS.

 

 End note by Ron.

 

End Chapter 21

CHAPTER 22 - This Way to Rome

When we read in Adventist literature the oft-repeated term "apostate Protestantism" we understand that the author is talking about Protestant churches that are backsliding to Rome. When the Seventh-day Adventist Church accepts the teachings of apostate Protestantism and imitates the ways of Rome, it is logical to refer to that condition as apostate Adventism, for the very term "apostasy" denotes a turning back or backsliding from a position once espoused.

God's Messenger had no illusions as to the direction in which a backsliding church is headed:

“It is a backsliding church that lessens the distance between itself and the Papacy.” (Signs of the Times, February 19, 1894).

We have seen how, in 1903 the church deliberately defied God's will by returning to a type of bureaucratic government described by Mrs. White as a "kingly power" and by A. T. Jones as "a government more like that of the Papacy than any of the Protestant churches" (see chapter 13).

We have also seen how the doctrinal changes brought into the Seventh-day Adventist Church under the cloak of historic Adventism, have brought us into favor with popular evangelicalism. Let us now briefly examine the veracity of our Messenger's claim that such changes lead toward the Papacy, by examining the two prongs of the dagger-namely, the unfallen nature and the judgment in relation to a completed atonement.

1. God sending his own son in the likeness of sinful flesh (Romans 8:3)

“The Romanists have been trying to get the human nature of Christ as far away from our humanity as possible, and hence have taught the Immaculate Conception of Mary.” (Bishop Simpson in his "Yale Lectures on Preaching," quoted in Bible Echo, December 1897).

Note by Ron: Bible Echo was an SDA publication. End note.

“By the dogma of the Immaculate Conception of the Virgin Mary, Rome teaches that the mother of Jesus was preserved from the stain of "original sin," and that she had sinless flesh. Consequently she was separated from the rest of humanity. As a result of the separating of Jesus from sinful flesh, the Roman priesthood has been instituted to mediate between Christ and the sinner (Sabbath School Quarterly, second quarter 1913, p. 25).

“Ancient Babylon affirmed that the gods (or God) dwelt not in the flesh. By the dogma of the Immaculate Conception of the Virgin Mary (that is, that she herself was born without a taint of original sin) modern Babylon teaches that God, in the person of His Son, did not take the same flesh with us; that is, sinful flesh (Bible Readings for the Home Circle, 1915, p. 236).

“The Scripture plainly teaches that Jesus, when born of a woman, assumed sinful flesh (Hebrews 2:14; Romans 8:3) and thus became united with man in his fallen condition. This doctrine of the Immaculate Conception of the Virgin Mary separates Jesus from the human family in its present state, by giving Him "perfect human nature" free from the stain of original sin, and thus prepares the way for the introduction of the human mediation which is one of the prominent features of the Roman Catholic system. The very essence of Christianity being the experience, "Christ in you, the hope of glory," it thus appears that the dogma of the Immaculate Conception of the Virgin Mary strikes at the very heart of Christianity.” (note by editors, Source Book for Bible Students, p. 220, Review and Herald, 1919; deleted from the 1922 edition).

In spite of such striking statements, all of which appear in official publications of the SDA Church, the books Questions on Doctrine and Movement of Destiny uphold the Roman Catholic heresy which is dependent on the dogma of the Immaculate Conception. Both teach that Christ did not inherit a sinful human nature.

Examples follow:

“Took Sinless Human Nature.” (QOD, p. 650)

“Took Sinless Nature of Adam Before Fall.” (MOD, p. 497)

2. “For God shall bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing, whether it be good or whether it be evil” (Ecclesiastes 12:14).

“For there is one God and one mediator between God and man, the man Christ Jesus” (1 Timothy 2:5).

When a Seventh-day Adventist publication states "Complete Atonement Made on Cross" (MOD p. 501) and "The atonement, or reconciliation was completed on the cross as pre-shadowed by the sacrifices, and the penitent believer can trust in this finished work of our Lord" ("Seventh-day Adventists Believe . . . ", p. 315) the church's belief in an atoning role of Christ in heaven as High Priest and Mediator is logically brought into ridicule. In commenting on Adventism's changed position, Barnhouse described our belief in the investigative judgment as "stale, flat and unprofitable" (Eternity, September 1956).

But, as seen earlier in this chapter, the Roman Catholic Church seeks to abort Christ's role of heavenly High Priest by insinuating its own mediators between God and man. Satan is determined one way or another to rob Jesus Christ of His mediatorial role for which He alone is qualified.

Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil; and deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage. For verily he took not on him the nature of angels; but he took on him the seed of Abraham. Wherefore in all things it behoved him to be made like unto his brethren, that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people. For in that he himself hath suffered being tempted, he is able to succour them that are tempted (Hebrews 2:14-18).

Whether Christ's work of salvation is cut off at the cross with a "completed act of atonement" or whether His work is circumscribed by the confines of a papal wafer in a virtual state of perpetual crucifixion, is of little consequence to the archdeceiver. Either way, there is no need for an investigative judgmentwhich is described by our prophet as Christ's final act of atonement.

By either means, man is not constrained to seek an intimate union with our Saviour by following "Jesus by faith into the heavenly sanctuary" (EW 255). Instead, he can delude himself that he need not obey God, for he is already saved at the cross; or by the incantations of a mystical human mediator:

“The Holy Eucharist is the sublime source of this intimate union with Jesus Christ during man's earthly pilgrimage, for in receiving Holy Communion, the Christian soul may truly exclaim: "And I live, now not I, but Christ liveth in me" Galatians 2:20 (The Catholic Church the True Church of the Bible, pp. 132-133, quoted in Source Book for Bible Students, 1919, p. 297; 1922 edition p. 319).

But in recent years, Adventists have come up with an ingenious Clayton-like* device consisting of a judgment which you have when you're not being judged! The term "investigative judgment" is far too descriptive for some, so they prefer to call it the "preAdvent judgment." 

* "Clayton" is a brand of non-alcoholic drink advertised in Australia as "The drink you have when you're not drinking."

They tell us its primary purpose is to give the universe an opportunity to judge God. Apparently this face-saving concept has been officially accepted by the ministerial association of the General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists,** for in their publication "Seventh-day Adventist Believe. .. ", we read:

This judgment is not for the benefit of the Godhead. It is primarily for the benefit of the universe, answering the charges of Satan and giving assurance to the unfallen creation that God will allow into His kingdom only those who truly have been converted. So God opens the books of record for impartial inspection. Daniel 7:9-10 ("Seventh-day Adventists Believe. .. ", p. 325).

The issue is with God and the universe, not between God and the true child (ibid. p. 326).

** "Seventh-day Adventists Believe. .. " comes "with the authorization and encouragement of President Neal C. Wilson and the other officers of the General Conference ... to furnish reliable information on the beliefs of our church" (p. v).

Such teaching is rank heresy and if believed, does have the effect of taking the urgency of the warning of the first angel away from the individual by placing God in the "hot-seat."* This brings us closer to the beliefs of Rome and her daughters whose teachings leave no room for an individual investigative judgment. How can they, when they believe that at death, the soul has already been consigned to heaven, purgatory or the everlasting flames of hell? 

* Terminology used by G. Youlden (Sermon, Avondale Memorial Church, August 20, 1988).

This teaching in "Seventh-day Adventists Believe .. . " is very different from that of historic Adventism. Just listen to what the then president of the General Conference had to say just thirteen years earlier (1975):

“The apostle Paul declares: "We must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ that everyone may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad" (2 Corinthians 5:10). We may not like it, we may not believe it, but the inspired writer declares it nonetheless certain that every one of us has a court case pending before the heavenly tribunal.... The great final judgment determines in which group you and I and every person born into this world will besaved or lostwhen Jesus returns. Not everyone who makes a start in the Christian way will go through to the kingdom. "Once in grace, always in grace" is a doctrine neither of the remnant church nor of the Scriptures. "He that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved," Jesus taught. (Matthew 24:13). The judgment separates those who merely begin to serve the Lord from those who follow Him unto the end.” (R. H. Pierson, We Still Believe, pp 123124).

Note by Ron: Robert H. Pierson was a President of the General Conference. End note.

Truly, a backsliding church does lessen the distance between itself and the Papacy.

A church can apostatize in either of two waysit can grow careless and indifferent to its special beliefs that have set it apart as a denomination; or it can revert to the beliefs and practices which it had originally discarded by assiduously promoting a deceitful campaign of subversion.

Both types of apostasy require the assistance of time and funerals. The latter type must inevitably be planned and controlled by the religious system to which its victim is attracted. We know of but one religious system which has formed a specific organization to subvert Protestantismthe Roman Catholic Church with its misnamed

"Society of Jesus."

In his book Alberto, ex-Roman Catholic priest Dr. Alberto Rivera tells how he was one of many young seminarians trained by the Jesuits to infiltrate Protestant denominations. He says:

“The first Protestant groups they [the Jesuits] moved on were the 7th Day Adventists [sic] and the Full Gospel Business Men” (p. 28).

In a later public interview with Mike Clute, Alberto not only reaffirmed that Jesuits had penetrated the S.D.A. Church but said that on a membership basis, the S.D.A. Church has been infiltrated more thoroughly than any other. Not surprisingly, along with the Roman Catholic Church, some Evangelical-type Adventist ministers and academics have not only denied Rivera's claim, but they are known to have exercised their imagination with hilarious descriptions of Jesuits lurking in the shadows of Adventist churches and institutions. The author does not seek to gainsay such people for they probably have the advantage of varying degrees of association with Rome and her daughters.

In the following three chapters we will briefly consider aspects of the Church's conduct which appear to be consistent with that of a papal hierarchy, and leave it to the reader to determine the credibility of Alberto Rivera's claims.

End Chapter 22

CHAPTER 23  -  "We Still Believe"

When Robert Pierson became General Conference president, the plan to pervert Adventist doctrine received a setback. Questions on Doctrine went out of print. LeRoy Froom had to act to salvage the situation, so he wrote the book, Movement of Destiny under the guise of fulfilling Elder Daniells' wish that he explain to the church the meaning of righteousness by faith.

In reality, MOD turned out to be a defense of the book Questions on Doctrine which, if its real purpose were known, was not likely to evoke the enthusiasm of President Pierson. Froom must have realized that it was vital to have the president's approval and recommendation for his book to have wide distribution and acceptance. So Froom had printed thousands of copies of a promotional pamphlet titled The Fascinating Story of Movement of Destiny. In it he made great store of the fact that he was about to fulfill Elder Daniells' commission, and that the Foreword to Movement of Destiny contained a glowing recommendation by the president of the General Conference-Elder Robert Pierson. Neither was he backward in proclaiming that the vice-president, Neal C. Wilson had given a similar recommendation in his Preface.

However, after publication of Movement of Destiny, President Pierson received a rude shock. He was reading things that he had not seen in the manuscript! His reaction was to forbid the publishers to use his Foreword in any future editions.* So when the next edition came out, Pierson's Foreword was deleted, but Elder Wilson must have agreed wholeheartedly with the book, for his Preface of approval remained.

* On October 6, 1988, Elder Robert Pierson wrote the author: "Some portions of Elder Froom's manuscript Movement of Destiny I had not read before its publication. Much of it I had read however, and what I read I heartily agreed with and was glad to write the requested Foreword. After reading some portions later, I declined to have my Foreword used in any subsequent editions."

Elder Pierson was troubled! He had been unwittingly and unfairly used. So he set about to write a book titled We Still Believe (Review and Herald Publishing Assoc., 1975). The very title indicates that he was aware that heresy was abroad. In it he reaffirmed the doctrines worked out by our pioneers, including our belief in Christ's continuing work of atonement in the heavenly sanctuary. Commenting on Fundamental Fourteen of the SDA Yearbook, 1973-1974 which states that "the priestly work of our Lord is the antitype of the work of the Jewish priests," he says:

“The Seventh-day Adventist Church today still believes the great truths presented in these symbols of salvation. We have neither changed our minds nor our position-the sanctuary truth is present truth today just as it was October 23, 1844, when the Lord revealed it initially to Hiram Edson" (We Still Believe, p. 111).

On page 119, he quotes the Lord's Messenger:

“The Sanctuary in heaven is the very center of Christ's work on behalf of men.” (GC 488).

And again,

“The intercession of Christ in man's behalf in the sanctuary above is as essential to the plan of salvation as was His death upon the cross.” (ibid. p. 489).

Then he makes crystal clear his belief that Christ's present work in the sanctuary is a continuation of the atonement by quoting from The Great Controversy, p. 489:

“We are now living in the great day of atonement.” (We Still Believe, p. 120).

In 1978, Elder R. H. Pierson retired from the presidency of the General Conference before his term of office had expired.* During the Annual Council of the General Conference (1978) he was moved to give a farewell address in which he gave an impassioned plea for the preservation of the faith. He warned of the approach of the omega of apostasy:

“Brethren, I beg of you, study, know what is ahead, then with God's help prepare your people to meet it.

“Regrettably there are those in the church who belittle the inspiration of the total Bible . . . who question the Spirit of Prophecy's short chronology of the earth, and who subtly and not-so-subtly attack the Spirit of Prophecy. . . . There are some who point to the reformers and contemporary theologians as a source and the norm for Seventh-day Adventist doctrine.... There are those who wish to forget the standards of the church we love. There are those who covet and would court the favor of the evangelicals; those who would throw off the mantle of a peculiar people; and those who would go the way of the secular, materialistic world.

“Fellow leaders, beloved brethren and sistersdon't let it happen! . . . I appeal to Andrews University, to the Seminary, to Loma Linda Universitydon't let it happen! We are not Seventh-day Anglicans, not Seventh-day Lutherans, we are Seventh-day Adventists! This is God's last church with God's last message!

* While it is generally believed that Elder Pierson retired for reasons of health, some who are close to the G. C. consider that he was "eased" out of the presidency. In view of his adherence to historic Adventism (as shown by his repudiation of some teachings in MOD in his book We Still Believe, this claim appears credible.

Further, it will be noted that since his retirement, practically every one of the warnings given in his farewell speech have gone unheeded; on the contrary, it seems that some Curia-like body has seen to it that they have been put into practice.

End Chapter 23

CHAPTER 24 - The Washington "Curia"

The Roman Curia is described as "the highly complicated and structured hierarchical body which is the Holy See's civil service" (Thomas and Morgan-Witts, Pontiff, p. 49, Granada Publishing).

“Popes may come and popes may go, but the Roman Curia, like the civil servants of an elected government need to remain in place. It is the curia which shapes and coordinates the political affairs of the pseudo-Christian system centered in the Vatican.

“Pope John Paul I did not appreciate all the advice tendered to him by his Curia. He had some plans of his own. On the thirty-third day of his pontificate, he made the decision to pull his liberal army of Jesuits back into line. He summoned the iron-willed Superior-General of that society, Pedro Arrupe, to appear before him on the following morning to answer to charges of spiritual sedition, having steered his twenty-seven thousand members "on a direct collision course with orthodox Church dogma (ibid., p. 364).

“Before Pope Paul I finally retired that night he sat up in bed going over the papers that had been prepared for the Jesuit Superior. But they were not to be delivered; they were found the next morning scattered near his dead body, still sitting up in bed!” (Ibid., p. 378).

It seems that the General Conference of the SDA Church has had a few men who have entrenched themselves in the administration at Washington D.C. Presidents come and presidents go, but some names appear almost as fixtures in a Curia-like band of executive directors.

While God's Messenger remained in our midst, such men were subjected to the restraining voice of rebuke. But after her death the papal-like tendencies of the "kingly" government were nurtured and exploited by the growing hierarchy. Soon they would take the opportunity to flex their muscles.

Dr. Benjamin G. Wilkinson was a forceful and outspoken figure of the time. His feelings about the exercise of "kingly power" were well known, for along with Mrs. White and Elders Waggoner and Jones, he had, as a young worker, voted in 1903 against the reinstitution of a presidential-type government.

The SDA Encyclopedia reveals some interesting details about Wilkinson's outstanding career. He trained for the ministry at Battle Creek College, became an evangelist in Wisconsin, obtained a B.A. at the University of Michigan and returned to Battle Creek College as dean. After a short spell as president of the Canadian Conference, he became the dean of theology at Union College. He is credited with commencing our work in Rome, Paris, and in Spain, having spent four years as president of the Latin Conference in the Southern European Division.

Returning to North America, we find him as evangelist, dean of theology at Washington Missionary College and president of Columbia Union Conference, and Kansas and East Pennsylvanian Conferences.

In 1935 Wilkinson became president of the Washington Missionary College, which post he held until 1945. While in his previous position as dean, Dr. Wilkinson perceived the trend among Adventist scholars to favor the modern versions of the Bible.*

*This is not surprising as, in 1926, the Berrien Springs College Press published a text book on doctrines for use in S.D.A. colleges, in which it claimed the ARV to be "more accurate, more scholarly, more valuable" than the AV (p. 59).

Note by Ron: The King James Version (KJV), also known as the King James Bible (KJB) or simply the Authorized Version (AV), is an English translation of the Christian Bible for the Church of England, begun in 1604 and completed in 1611 End note by Ron.

He was aware that the Pacific Press Association had published a book by William P. Pierce titled The World's Best Book (1930). This book elevated the American Revised Version by saying that the two thousand or more changes in the New Testament "had done no violence to the original sense" but had in fact refined it (p. 83).

Such a conclusion was based on the premise that since the translation of the King James Bible, more reliable codices had become available, such as the Alexandrian, Vatican and Sinaitic, which the author describes as "great Codices" (The World's Best Book, chapter XIII).

Wilkinson knew that the ARV had done "violence to the original sense." He was aware that these "more reliable" manuscripts carried Roman Catholic readings of the Latin Vulgate which had been rejected by the Protestants of the Reformation. They had been secretly injected into the supposed revision of the Authorized Version in 1881 by the extensive use of the carefully hidden Greek New Testament of Doctors Westcott and Hort. These clergymen of the Church of England had long fallen under the spell of ritualism, Romanism and higher criticism (See Our Authorized Bible Vindicated, chapter IX).

The Revised Versions had not been generally received with favor. Some sixty years after the publication of the RV and twenty years after the ARV, the popular Ladies' Home Journal commented on the virtues of the Authorized Version:

“Now, as the English-speaking people have the best Bible in the world . . . we ought to make the most of it. . . . This means that we ought invariably in the church and on public occasions to use the Authorized Version; all others are inferior.” (November 1921).

A few months later, the Herald and Presbyter magazine denounced the Revised Version:

“This Revised Version is in large part in line with what is known as "Modernism." Those who really investigate the matter ... realize that the RV is part of a movement to modernize Christian thought and faith and do away with established truth.” (July 16, 1924).

Apparently Dr. Wilkinson's concerns over our church's acceptance of the ARV were not appreciated by the Washington hierarchy. General Conference president W. A. Spicer wrote to Wilkinson expressing his concern that he or the college should make an issue of the comparative merits of Bible translations. He stated:

“When one of our leading colleges gives publicity to this matter as really a controversial issue, it is blazing a new trail. It is my conviction that none of our colleges should give public agitation to a question that involves a new issue, especially one pertaining to the Word of God, without counsel from the General Conference Committee in Council.” (Letter, November 18, 1928).

But it seems that Wilkinson was by no means the only one to air his views without obtaining the sanction of the growing papal like power in Washington. On January 14, 1930, President Spicer was constrained to write to Elder W. W. Prescott, who as Signs editor had run a series of articles on the versions. (In reality, these articles downgraded the KJV by elevating the revised versions):

“I have just read the fourth article of the series. I must say, Brother Prescott, that I feel concerning your setting forth of the faultiness of Bible manuscripts that this is illtimed and harmful. The tendency of this kind of discussion I believe is to spread questioning and unbelief.”

But even as Spicer was showing his concern, Dr. Wilkinson had been busy and by June 1930 he had written and published a book, Our Authorized Bible Vindicated. It was "written with the fervent hope that it will confirm and establish faith in God's Word, which through the ages has been preserved inviolate" (Foreword).

He then demonstrated that there were fundamentally two different Biblesthe uncorrupted and the corrupted, as represented by the Protestant Bibles and the Roman Catholic. It was the Authorized Bible of King James, which nourished the Protestant Reformation in the English-speaking world, having followed the same N.T. text of Erasmus as Tyndale had used in his English Bible.

Wilkinson then showed how the Jesuits had infiltrated Oxford University, and insinuated their Roman Bibles into the Revised Version in order to combat the authority of the Authorized Version which they saw as a "paper pope." Catholics gloated at the fact that this had been accomplished by Protestants themselves. Said Cardinal Wiseman,

“When we consider the scorn cast by the Reformers upon the Vulgate (Catholic Bible), and their recurrence, in consequence to the Greek [text of Erasmus], as the only accurate standard, we cannot but rejoice at the silent triumph which truth has at length gained over clamorous error. For, in fact, the principal writers who have avenged the Vulgate, and obtained for it its critical preeminence, are Protestants.” (Wiseman Essays, Vol. 1, p. 104).

Wilkinson also dealt at length with the Roman input into the American RV. He showed how Dr. Philip Schaff, president of the American Committee of Revision had brought from Germany the contaminating theory of "historical development" which had filled Oxford with the Roman poison of Modernism. Wilkinson quoted (p. 236):

“It is quite time that the churches of our country should awake to the extent and tendencies of this movement in the midst of American Protestantism. After a series of advances and retractions, strongly resembling the tactics of the Tractarian party [an Oxford group] in England, we have at length a bold avowal of the "primacy of Peter," the fundamental and test doctrine of the Papacy, followed by a concision of every vital point of ChristianityChurch, Ministry, Worship, Sacraments, and the right of Private Judgment to Romanism, and that too, while the name and the forms of Protestantism are (as far as possible) studiously retained.” (New Brunswick Review, May 1854, p. 20).

Wilkinson's book brought a swift response from the General Conferencebut not the kind of response that Bible-believing Protestants would expect. The church that had "recognized the equal value of the Authorized and the ARV" (G. C. Committee, March 20, 1930) and had recently extolled the virtues of the ARV in The World's Best Book, denounced Wilkinson's book as "unauthorized." Said vice-president J. L. McElhany in a letter to Union and local conferences in North America:

“The book in question has not been passed upon by a book committee of any of our publishing houses.... Our Authorized Bible Vindicated can be of no particular help to our work, and will only serve to continue the agitation of a question which we believe should be avoided.” (Letter, July 27, 1930).

But the Washington "Curia" did not let the matter rest. They were so concerned by Wilkinson's exposure of the Jesuit plan to wreck the Protestant Bible that they formed a committee to defame Our Authorized Bible Vindicated.*

* As usual, the members of the committee remain anonymous. But the names L. E. Froom, L. E. Howell, and M. E. Kern are currently connected with this committee. It is interesting to note that when the AV was presented in The World's Best Book as having inferior manuscripts to the ARV, the "Curia" showed no concern.

They came up with a document, which purported to be a review of Wilkinson's book. But for reasons best known to themselves, no names are appended to this document. A copy of Wilkinson's Answers to the Reviewer's Objections is in the author's possession.

Fortunately, Wilkinson listed each significant objection and replied to each one, so we have a fairly accurate overview of the objections. His reply must be regarded by any impartial reader as an exposure of a gross misrepresentation of facts by a hostile review committee. Wilkinson comments thus:

“But those who wrote the document to which I now reply were under obligation, since they called it a "review" to be impartial and to present the good and the strong side of my arguments as well as those phases which seemed to them to be weak. This they notably failed to do.” (Introduction p. 1).

He then listed eight great arguments which the Reviewers had chosen to ignore:

1.    The Romanizing and Unitarian character of Westcott and Hort, two leading English revisers.

2.    The grave charges concerning Dr. Philip Schaff, president of the American Revision Committees.

3.    The connection between the Revision of the AV and the Oxford movement which Jesuitized England.

4.    The arguments drawn from the [Roman Catholic] Council of Trent, which voted among other means of combating the Reformation to "put the [Roman Catholic] Vulgate on its feet."

5.    That the Catholic scholars rejoiced that the RV had restored Catholic readings that had been denounced in the Reformation.

6.    The argument drawn from the chapter "The Reformers Reject the Bible of the Papacy."

7.    The tremendous argument drawn from the great struggle over the Jesuit Bible of 1582.

8.    The chapter, "Three Hundred Years of Attack on the King James Version" by Jesuits, higher critics, and pantheistic German scholars (from Introduction to Answers to Reviewer's Objections).

It will be noticed that all of the above points involve the struggle for Papal supremacy over Protestantism. These the Reviewers could not deny, so they ignored them. The objections and accusations which they did raise, many of which were puerile, were ably refuted by Wilkinson. No wonder the General Conference "Curia" were anxious to bury all traces of this resounding defeat. It is reported that the General Conference requested that Wilkinson not circulate his reply to their objections. (Clute tape).

Interestingly, in later years, and currently the denomination's attempts to justify most modern versions to the detriment of the Authorized King James Bible, ignore those same great points listed by Wilkinson. Instead, they trot out the time-worn arguments put forth by Roman Catholics and their lackeys in Protestantism. A typical example is to be found in the recent series of six articles by Arthur J. Ferch, published in the South Pacific Record, commencing March 25, 1989, titled "History of the New Testament."

Dr. Benjamin G. Wilkinson was a studious man with an inquiring mind. During investigations which he had made into the history of the New Testament, he had come to realize that God's guardians of His truth through the Dark Ages were also the custodians of true Scripture. This, of course is logical, and had been acknowledged by Mrs. E. G. White:

“The Waldenses were among the first of the people of Europe to obtain a translation of the Holy Scriptures....They had the truth unadulterated, and this rendered them the special objects of hatred and persecution.... But in a most wonderful manner it was preserved uncorrupted through all the ages of darkness.” (The Great Controversy, pp 65,69).

According to a friend of the Wilkinson family, Wilkinson's ability as a scholar and researcher had come to the notice of Cordell Hull, then U. S. Secretary of State. He issued to Wilkinson, credentials which virtually unlocked to him the vaults of the world, thus enabling him to examine rare historical documents and manuscripts.

In 1944, the Pacific Press Publishing Association published Wilkinson's findings in the book, Truth Triumphant. Like his previous work, Our Authorized Bible Vindicated, it was greatly appreciated by the rank and file of Adventists. Here was a book which demonstrated that the great truths of God had been safely handed down from apostolic times and guarded by His true church until present times. But it was the church in the wilderness and not the church in Rome that was the custodian of Truth! This was a book that would strengthen the faith and beliefs of every Seventh-day Adventist. But the Washington "Curia" was not pleased. According to the Clute interview, L. E. Froom instructed the Pacific Press to destroy the plates of Truth Triumphant. This could explain why this much-sought-after book has not been republished by the denomination.* 

* Truth Triumphant is available from Hartland Publications, P 0 Box 1, Rapidan, VA 22733 USA

No doubt Wilkinson's exposure of the false scriptures and the role played by them in fostering apostasy had left its mark on Adventism.

In 1954, the General Conference reacted by publishing the book Problems in Translation, the work of a nameless committee. But most of the problems were in fact, brought about by the church's increasing acceptance of the modern versions. It sought to deal with the problem by trying to please everyone. After reciting the stance taken back in the early 1930s, that the 1611 KJV and the 1901 ARV "Shall serve us without discrimination," they also appealed to our workers to cooperate "in endeavoring to preserve the unity of our people" by "leaving all free to use the version of their choice" (Problems in Translation, pp. 74-75).

So once again, Wilkinson's timely warnings had been rebuffed mainly on the grounds of unity. No attempt was made to address the real issue-that it was the church in the wilderness which had been appointed as the guardian of God's Word and not Rome, and that Rome had foisted its corrupted versions upon unsuspecting Protestants and Seventh-day Adventists alike.

And then comes this remarkably contradictory statement: 

“If resort is made indiscriminately to the various translations, the reader or hearer gets the impression that the different versions stand on an equal footing, as far as authoritatively transmitting the word of God is concerned, which is not the case.” (ibid., p. 57).

(Such a foray into the minefields of consensus must have been deemed successful, for the Seventh-day Adventist Church has since come to rely increasingly on consensus statements.)

But the time was not far off when the church would drop all pretense of caution and impartiality. They would not only foist the Roman Bibles on their own membership, but would become foremost in recommending them to Christendom at large. In short, they would become "Rome's Little Helper." But that is another story to be told in the following chapter.

In retrospect, the decade of the 1950s must be seen as a great watershed in Seventh-day Adventist history. By 1954, Elder R. R. Figuhr had assumed the presidency of the General Conference. He was fresh from associate editorship of the Ministry magazine with Elder R. A. Anderson, who in turn had been an Associate Editor with L. E. Froom. Circumstances were now favorable for the great leap forward (backward) into apostasy. We have seen how this was accomplished with the help of the evangelicals, Dr. Barnhouse and Walter Martin.

Before long, an event took place which President Figuhr saw as a distinct threat to the "Curia's" plans. A book, titled The Living Witness, consisting of forty-seven "significant articles" was published by the Pacific Press Publishing Association in 1959. When Elder Figuhr read it, he reacted with alacrity. Here was a book, published within two years of Questions on Doctrine which contradicted the "completed atonement." What would Barnhouse and Martin say? What would our new-found friends in Christendom think?

The offending article was written by the late Elder James White, editor of the Signs of the Times.

“[Jesus Christ] ascended on high to be our only mediator in the Sanctuary in heaven where, with His own blood, He makes atonement for our sins; which atonement, so far from being made at the cross, which was but the offering of the sacrifice, is the very last portion of His work as priest, according to the example of the Levitical priesthood which foreshadowed and prefigured the ministry of our Lord in heaven.” (The Living Witness, p. 2).

We are indebted to Elder M. L. Andreasen for the following account of Figuhr's reaction:

“When Elder Figuhr read the statement in the "Living Witness" that the atonement was not made on the cross, he ordered the books that had already been bound destroyed. Several hundred books that had already been shipped out, were also destroyed, as well as 2000 signatures that had not yet been bound. The financial loss would be worthwhile.... It was necessary that a whole signature of 16 pages be replaced with corrected material.” (M. L. Andreasen's Letters to the Churches).

Andreasen continued with this highly significant statement:

“If the question was raised why a discussion should arise as to where and when the atonement was made, Elder White would answer: "On this question hangs the existence of the SDA denomination. If the atonement was made on the cross in A.D. 31 and this atonement was complete, perfect, final as the Ministry asserts, then there cannot possibly be another final atonement 1810 years later. And if there is no day of atonement at the end of the 2300 days in 1844, then the whole 1844 movement was a mistake, and the Adventists false prophets. If there was no cleansing of the sanctuary in 1844, then the Three Angels' Messages and the Hour of Judgment call were a false alarm, and then we may as well "totally repudiate" our entire message as the evangelicals state our leaders have done and which the leaders have never denied.” (ibid.).

(Both quotations as reprinted in The M. L. Andreasen File, p. 96, by Laymen Ministry News, 1988.)

Surely it would be difficult to imagine an action more closely aligned with papal-like behavior! Its exposure by Andreasen in his Letters to the Churches helps us to understand why the "Curia" sought revenge by depriving him of his credentials and his sustentation.

And so today, when we turn to the book The Living Witness, we find that the "Witness" has been maimed. The dagger struck and His message has been muted. We may well ask:

Which church has a vested interest in abolishing Christ's mediatorial role between God and man, if it is not the Church of Rome? Which church would want to replace the Bible which brought on the Protestant Reformation and from which we obtained our doctrines?

Is Alberto's claim that the Jesuits have successfully infiltrated Adventism really so incredible?

Why should Rome not take advantage of a system with which they are familiar already?the papal-like system that A. T. Jones had identified as that already adopted by the Seventh day Adventist Church?

End Chapter 24

 CHAPTER 25 - Rome's Little Helper

By the end of Elder Figuhr's term as G. C. president, some of the modern Bible versions had become highly popular with many Adventist scholars and writers. The N. T. Greek of Westcott and Hort had long become the authoritative text in our colleges. The writer recalls that this was the Greek N. T. used in the training of ministers at the Australasian Missionary College (now Avondale College) as far back as 1937.

Consequently, when a question arose over a controversial text in the modern versions, the Jesuit-corrupted text of Westcott and Hort from which most modern versions derive, was appealed to as the best arbiter. Such fallacious reasoning is commonly used to this day.

But it appears that the Washington "Curia" was not content to rest on its laurels. There was a whole wide world of Christendom out there and it was lagging behind, burdened with the "archaic" Bible of King James.

Elder R. H. Pierson succeeded Elder Figuhr as G. C. president. Although he was considered to be conservative and fundamental it was perceived that in his writings he was an enthusiastic supporter of modern versions. (Later, in his book We Still Believe (1975) we witness the anomaly of a "Defender of the Faith" having to gain permission to use scripture from the owners of four modern versions.)

So in 1969, the SDA Church seriously launched its career as Rome's Little Helper per medium of their public outreach journal, Signs of the Times (May 1969). The question, "Can We Trust Modern Bible Versions?"* was answered by A. Graham Maxwell:

“You can trust the modern versions. Read as many as you can.” (p. 31).

*This article, "Can We Trust Modern Bible Versions?" must have been regarded as a masterpiece by successive admirers of Roman inventiveness for it has occasionally reappeared in Adventist publications, e.g. Adventist Review, November 1985.

Unfortunately, Maxwell seeks to instill trust in the modern versions by denigrating the Authorized Version to the status of a "revision." He calls it the "1611 revision." But it is apparent that the translators of the AV would not appreciate Maxwell's designation, for they regarded their work as a translation. Read their offering to the "Most high and mighty Prince James":

“That out of the Original Sacred Tongues, together with comparing of the labours, both in our own, and other foreign languages of many worthy men who went before us, there should be one more exact translation of the holy Scriptures into the English tongue.”

As for the Revised Version, it is claimed that it is dishonestly named, for it is not a revision of the KJV. It was supposed to be, and it is claimed to be, but the fraud was quickly exposed by Dr. John William Burgon, Dean of Chichester. He comments on the New Testament:

“The English (as well as the Greek) is hopelessly at fault.... But the "Revised Version" is inaccurate as well; exhibits defective scholarship, I mean in countless places. “It is however, the systematic depravation of the underlying Greek which does so grievously offend me; for this is nothing else but a poisoning of the River of Life at its sacred source.” (Dedication to Revision Revised, 1883, p. vi).

Burgon comments further on the intrusion of the underlying Greek text of Westcott and Hort (as opposed to the Greek text of Erasmus used by the King James translators):

“For if the underlying Greek text be mistaken, what else but incorrect must the English translation be.... To my surprise and annoyance, it [RV] proved to be a new Translation rather than a Revision of the Old.” (ibid., Preface p. xii).

Bible teacher, J. J. Ray simply shows the fallacy of Maxwell's argument:

“The Revision of 1881, the American Standard Version of 1901, the Revised Standard Version, the Amplified, Expanded and Paraphrased Bibles are in no true sense a revision of the King James of 1611. If they were, they would follow the same Greek text, the Textus Receptus. All that they should have done, was to replace the obsolete words.... Instead of doing this, the Revision Committee yielded to human arguments, and permitted the new radical changes to be secretly forced upon them.” (God Wrote Only One Bible, p. 30).

It is also sad to note the pathetic attempt by Maxwell to invest the RV and the ARV (1901) with the aura of "authorization," describing the latter as the fifth "Authorized Version" of the English Bible.

“It must be obvious to God-fearing Christians that the only truly Authorized Bible is that which was given by God to man. The King James Bible has become known as the Authorized Bible simply because it was commissioned by royal decree.... But to call the ARV an authorized Bible is incredible for it was authorized by none other than those who financed the venture and kept the American cash registers ringing. As for the RSV, which claims to be a revision of the ASV, it was authorized by vote of the National Council of Churches of Christ.” (Preface to RSV, p. iv).

Such semantic adventures by Maxwell can only be regarded as a strained association of ideas calculated to present the modern versions as healthy descendants of the KJV.

But interestingly, Maxwell's claim is also refuted by none other than the translators of one of the modern versions which he recommends:

The Revised Version, which appeared in 1881, makes a new departure, especially in that it abandoned the so-called Received Text, (Erasmus) which has reigned ever since the printed editions of the New Testament began.” (Introduction to NEB, New Testament).

And, as if to put the lid on Maxwell's specious argument, we read this astounding admission in the New KJV:

“A growing number of scholars now regard the Received Text far more reliable than previously thought.... The New King James New Testament has been based on this Received text, thus perpetuating the tradition begun by William Tyndale in 1525 and continued by the 1611 translators in rendering the Authorized Version.” (Preface.)

Wilkinson's contention that his reviewers had failed to acknowledge the corrupted stream of Romanism in the new versions is still valid today. Certain influential people in the SDA organzation prefer to promote Constantine's illegitimate offspring of church and state. The aforementioned series of articles by A. J. Ferch in the South Pacific Record (1989) is an example.

Among the various Bible Societies is one based in the United Kingdom, known as the Trinitarian Bible Society. New Testaments based on the Greek New Testament of Westcott and Hort are notorious for their degradation of Christ's divinity. Therefore, the Trinitarian Bible Society promotes and distributes only Bibles based on the Received Text, the most shining example of which is the KJV. This is in stark contrast to the various national Bible Societies which come under the umbrella of the United Bible Societies (UBS) and under the spell of Rome. The SDA Church has long since become one of UBS's loyal supporters.

The United Bible Societies are very active in translating Scripture into various languages. Mostly they are ecumenical projects which produce interconfessional Bibles. The October 1985 quarterly Record of the Trinitarian Tract Society sheds some interesting information on ecumenism which involves the SDA Church:

“The work of the Bible Society [UBS] acquired a new dimension with the setting up of a conservative committee made up of three representatives from the Roman Catholic, the Anglican and the Seventh-day Adventist Churches. This committee will supervise the translation, reproduction and distribution in the Seychelles (UBS Report, 1984).

“Monsignor Alberto Ablondi, who in 1985 was an executive member of the European Regional Executive of the UBS, sees these ecumenical projects as "one of the most important advancements of post-Vatican II ecumenism-an important step toward unity" (Ward-Event No. 57, p. 6, 1984).

As interconfessional Bibles must of necessity be of the variety acceptable to Rome and her Babylonian daughters, and in view of Adventism's newly-demonstrated preference for Roman corruptions of Scripture, surely it is correct to assume that the SDA denomination has now joined with Rome in their Jesuit-inspired plan to produce as well as to disseminate Bibles of anti-christ.

But the "Curia" of Washington has gone much further than this. They are now foisting Rome's Bibles upon their hapless Adventist church members by the mandatory use of the Seventh day Adventist Hymnal (1985).

This hymn book contains a section of responsive Scripture Readings for corporate worship, together with a selection of canticles and prayers. They are taken from eight Bible versions. From the following table it will be seen that our official hymn book denigrates the Protestant Bible of our pioneers to a minor position among the versions used. The Roman Catholic Jerusalem Bible is used over two-and-a-half times more frequently than the KJV. The NIV used 68 times The Jerusalem Bible used 38 times

 

The NKJV

used 34 times

The RSV

used 28 times

The NEB

used 22 times

The TEV

used 15 times

The KJV

used 14 times

The NASB

used 3 times

So, by this Trojan-horse device, people who normally would use only the KJV are placed in a position where the pastor can maneuver them into reading from the new versions.

Dr. Alberto Rivera, who claims to have been trained by the Jesuits to infiltrate Protestant churches, has written a booklet, Sabotage, explaining the Jesuit plan to subvert Protestantism by the use of Roman-tainted Bibles. He says,

“In the last eighty years we've had about eighty-one new English Bibles (all Roman Catholic) based on Origen's corrupted text, all trying to push the King James Bible out of the picture. Soon there will be an ecumenical bible (one common bible for all religions) preparing the way for the anti-Christ.” (Sabotage, 1979, p. 29).

Predictably, the Roman Catholic church denies Rivera's priestly training. But surprisingly, many SDAs join with apostate Protestantism in slavishly repeating Rome's denials! In so doing they indicate their refusal to recognize the role of Jesuits as destroyers of Protestantism. But more particularly, such denials are designed to protect versions of the Bible which are seen as providing a semblance of authority for the teachings of apostate Adventism.

Of particular interest is the trans-denominational popularity of the NIV. Its meteoric rise to favor with SDA educators, writers and pastors, and as we have just seen, its overwhelming predominance among the scripture readings of the SDA Church Hymnal, is nothing short of phenomenal.

Undoubtedly, this is the ecumenical Bible to which Dr. Rivera referred as "preparing the way for anti-christ." (It is available in most Roman Catholic bookshops.) As we consider the doctrines so destructive to Adventism as discussed in the two-pronged dagger aimed at the heart of Adventism, can an honest Seventh-day Adventist deny the truth of Rivera's prediction?

As we note the insinuation into the SDA Church of doctrines favorable to Rome, we marvel at the fervor and dedication with which the Washington "Curia" has expedited the Roman plan to replace the Protestant Bible of King James with their own corrupted bibles. Such actions would be entirely consistent with a Jesuit-controlled church. But if Rivera's claim of Jesuit infiltration is incorrect, then surely it is reasonable to conclude that certain people in the Adventist "Curia" are every bit as competent, and dedicated in the work of Roman subversion as the Jesuits themselves.

But there remains another powerful witness to the church's desire to emulate Rome. It is the confessions and actions of leadership itself which conform to A. T. Jones' description of a "kingly ruling" church power:

“The Seventh-day Adventist denomination is more like the Catholic Church than is any other Protestant church in the world.” (see chapter 13).

As the year 1974 drew to its close, the General Conference found itself in a United States District Court as the defendant in a lawsuit brought against the Pacific Press Publishing Association (PPPA) by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) of the United States.

The case centered on the PPPA's treatment of two of its female employees-one a secretary to the editor of the Signs of the Times, the other an editorial assistant to the book editor. It appears that the Church's treatment of these people in pecuniary matters fell considerably short of what was considered fair and equitable by the EEOC.

For the purpose of this chapter, we will not concern ourselves with the rights and wrongs of the case, but rather we shall note the tactics of the General Conference, through its Brief, in its desire to successfully contest the suit.

The opening Brief sought to confuse the real issue by claiming that this was a "head-on confrontation between church and state" and that the government was seeking an injunction which would control the affairs of the Church and dictate the manner in which the Church carries on God's work: (CIV NO.74-2025 CBR, Opening Brief).

This, Brief saw as a violation of the First Amendment to the U. S. Constitution, and as the General Conference was the Church, it should be above all laws of the land. In describing the meaning of the term "General Conference" it was said to have three overlapping meanings:

a.  The embodiment of the remnant church as a Christian denomination.

b.  The actual quadrennial meeting of delegates, which body alone has authority

to alter Church structure in doctrine or organization.

c.  The permanent staff at world headquarters in Washington D. C. which, acting through the executive committee, attends to the Church work between quadrennial conferences (ibid.)

So we see that the Washington headquarters staff takes upon itself the status of "the Church." The Brief described Elder R. H. Pierson, president of the G.C. as "the first minister" of the SDA Church, while Elder Neal C. Wilson, vice-president for North America, described himself as "the spiritual leader" of SDAs in North America (ibid.).

For the purpose of defending the suit, it appears that Brief for the defendants sought to establish the supreme authority of the General Conference in the organizational structure of the Church:

“The plain and undeniable fact is that the Seventh-day Adventist Church is most assuredly not a "congregational" one . . . but it is clearly of the "representative" or "hierarchical" variety.” (Reply Brief for Defendants 74-2025 CBR).

But it will be noted that a "hierarchical variety" of church government is akin to the Roman Catholic variety, where the "spiritual leader" of the church also is a man. It is not surprising then that Brief sought to categorize the two female employees as nuns, and by implication, they should be happy to receive whatever reward the hierarchy saw fit to pay them. This is borne out in Neal C. Wilson's affidavit where he quoted from the North American Division's Working Policy, p. 36:

“They [employees] shall never appeal to any court of law for redress from such adjustments as may be made by the denomination concerning any personal claim they may make.” (Affidavit of Neal C. Wilson 74-2025 CBR).

So it was pointed out that one employee had attained a status of a licensed missionary of the Church and the other, a credentialed missionary which, according to Brief, made her a "minister of the Church." Therefore:

“Those who work for the Seventh-day Adventist Church respond to a religious vocation in exactly the same sense as does a cloistered nun.” (ibid.).

But it is evident that the two ladies, both of whom were married, had a decidedly different view of their relationship to their employer. This, Elder Wilson saw as their main problem:

“The primary reason for the conflict is that these workers in the Church have been unwilling to recognize and accept the authority of the Church in determining internal policies governing the ecclesiastical nature and mission of their employing organization.” (Affidavit of Neal C. Wilson 74-2025 CBR).

Lest such authority appear to show papal-like overtones in defiance of state laws, Wilson closed his affidavit by revealing his source of authority:

“Finally, being conscious of the full weight and burden of my responsibilities as the spiritual leader of approximately one half million souls, it is my duty to God and to my church to reaffirm that, with all respect and veneration for the secular laws of the United States of America duly and justly realized and rendered, we the church owe and must render our first obedience and service to the Divine Law of Jesus Christ that the will of God may be done "on earth as it is in heaven"; and this we solemnly and reverently do, even should the carrying out of our sacred obligations result, in the words of St. Paul to the Corinthians (2 Corinthians 6:4, 5 [RSV] "in afflictions, hardships, calamities, beatings, imprisonments."* (Sworn 27th day of November 1974 and signed, Neal C. Wilson.)

* Many in the Seventh-day Adventist Church, especially those in Hungary, must wonder "\what happened to our president's solemn resolve to render first obedience to God amid afflictions, hardships, calamities, beatings, imprisonments."

In his affidavit, president R. H. Pierson described himself as "an ordained minister of the Gospel and president of the General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists, which is the Seventh-day Adventist Church." He stated that he was its "first minister for the time being," and proceeded to outline the order of the hierarchy:

“The orders of ministers in the Seventh-day Adventist Church include ordained Ministers, credentialed Missionaries, licensed Ministers, licensed Missionaries, and credentialed literature Evangelists.” (Affidavit of Robert H. Pierson, No. 74-2025 CBR).

Elder Pierson explained:

“All denominational employees in the Seventh-day Adventist Church are regarded as church workers placed in one of two harmonious categories and designated as ministers or missionaries" (ibid.).

But one of the interveners, Lorna Tobler, who was employed as an editorial secretary found such claims very extravagant. During her twenty-five years of connection with Adventist-related institutions she had never been called a pastor or elder, never been ordained, performed a baptismal or marriage ceremony or presided at the Lord's Supper.

In spite of her considerable denominational experience, and that she was married to an Adventist minister, she had never heard or seen the term "first minister" applied to a General Conference president:

“I have frequently heard the term "hierarchy" used among Adventists when reference is made to the Roman Catholic system, of which I have always been taught that Adventists strongly disapprove. . . . I have never heard of Adventist religious "orders" or "orders of ministry" . . . among Adventists, I have always heard this term used to apply to Roman Catholicism, which I have been taught to reject. I have never heard any employee of Adventist-related institutions, or any Seventh-day Adventist at all, compared to "a cloistered nun" and believe such a concept to be alien to Adventist thought and practice.... I have never heard any belief that everything Adventist ministers or administrators do is "sacramental" .. . I have never heard it said among Adventists that the church claims exemption from all civil laws" (Sworn on February 18, 1975 by Lorna Tobler).

In the Reply Brief for Defendants appears a startling but significant statement which probably indicates the underlying philosophy behind present attitudes manifested in the Seventh-day Adventist Church:

“Although it is true that there was a period in the life of the Seventh-day Adventist Church when the denomination took a distinctly anti-Roman Catholic viewpoint, and the term "hierarchy" was used in a pejorative [deprecatory] sense to refer to the papal form of church governance, that attitude on the church's part was nothing more than a manifestation of widespread anti-popery among conservative Protestant denominations in the early part of this century and the latter part of the last, and which has now been consigned to the historical trash heap so far as the Seventh-day Adventist Church is concerned.”

So there we have the witness of modern-day leadership in the Seventh-day Adventist Church. When the chips were down and the dollar signs were up, the truth came out. The Adventist "Curia" showed its true colors and the banner of Protestantism was trampled in the rush to deny the message of the third angel. What would our prophet have to say about such crass apostasy?

End Chapter 25

CHAPTER 26  -  "A New Order"

And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh. Luke 21:28

As our tired world staggers toward its rendezvous with the twenty-first century after Christ, we are reminded that some day along the way, we shall probably silently slip into earth's seventh millennium of history. To some the notion, that the seventh millennium should coincide with a millennium spent in Paradise, is so appealing as to make it a desired expectation.

Certainly we have lived to see the day when the world can be seen to have waxed old as a garment (Psalm 102:26). Man's insatiable quest to improve his standard of living has brought us to the place where the very oxygen needed to sustain life is running out. His success in some areas of planet earth is causing him to flounder in his own garbage.

We have societies where people battle with their appetite in order to reduce weight, yet a large section of the world's population rarely experience the sensation of a full stomach. They are the main contributors to a population explosion.

In practically every field of man's endeavor, we find conditions that seem to indicate a fast-approaching climax. For instance: how long can the moral depravity of man continue to worsen before civilization as we know it becomes no longer tenable? With the vast buildup of nuclear and biological weapons and the technology with which to deliver them to any point on earth; with the continuing breakdown of law and order through corruption of traditional law enforcement agencies, a scenario develops that could plunge part or all of the world into utter chaos. This has happened in limited regions of the world with increasing frequency over the latter half of this century.

When we look at the world's financial affairs, we see a situation where in spite of all the post-war plans to bring about equity among nations, the have-nots have slipped further into debt, while others have reached a state of prosperity rarely seen in earth's history. Yet today, some previously prosperous nations have reached a situation where they can no longer service their debts, let alone reduce their principal borrowings.

In the past, such were the ingredients of which wars were made. How long before man's fear of an exterminating war is overcome by his perceived need for greater wealth? From whatever viewpoint we look upon man's modern dilemma, all roads seem to be leading toward an inevitable climax-a situation where we are nearing the end of the line. And all lines seem to be converging toward the close of the twentieth century.

The apostle Paul had foreseen some of the perils of the last days. He lists their causes for posterity:

For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud ... (2 Timothy 3:1, 2).

As he continues in succeeding verses he outlines the characteristics of those who have a form of godliness, but deny the power thereof. That's right. He is talking about people who profess to be followers of God. They're an unthankful and unholy lot, some are false accusers and think nothing of breaking their word. They are fierce people who actually despise those who are good. Some have even lost all natural affection! Paul is not talking about a bunch of ignoramuses. Not at all! Some are highly intellectual. They have degrees from the top universities. They are "ever learning" he says, yet "never able to come to the knowledge of the truth" (verse 7).

What a tragedy! Yet, we are told that there will be some who will not be deceived. They are those who continue in the things that they have learned from the Holy Scripturesthe things "which are able to make us wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus" (verse 15).

Particularly in Western society do we see Paul's predictions as reality. Here are civilizations where laws are based on the Judeo-Christian ethic. They have prospered as a result of the Protestant Reformation and its attitude toward work. They have arrived! So countries like Australia don't need Christianity any more. Australia has been removed from the United Nations' list of Christian countries! Just contemplate that! We have discarded the very foundation on which our society and prosperity have been built. No wonder politicians have described Australia's course as leading to a "banana republic"!

But just as Western society is suffering because of its abandonment of true Protestantism, so the Seventh-day Adventist Church, to whom the flickering torch of Protestantism was handed, is sliding back into the arms of Rome. It is called apostate Adventism. Think about it, dear reader-the heresies propounded by our leadership find favor in the eyes of Rome; every suspect and corrupt practice followed by our leadership harks back to a type of organization described by A. T. Jones as "papal-like," and the methods used to promote and enforce such practices are the methods of popery.* Instead of preaching the message of 1844 and calling people to come out of Babylon (Roman error) and prepare for the judgment, we appear determined to be counted with Babylon.

* Some half-century later, Andreasen concurred with Jones: "Here I was, for fifty years an honored member of the church, having held responsible positions. But if l dared hold "views divergent from that of the responsible leadership of the denomination," I became a member of the "wild-eyed irresponsibles" who constituted the "lunatic fringe" of the denomination; and without a hearing I was ordered to cease my activity or feel the "brakes" applied.... Rome went but little further" (Letters to the Churches, no. 6).

Loyal Adventists will recognize these signs as those which must precede the return of Christ. They could not appear until after the close of the last great time prophecy as outlined by Daniel the prophet, which culminated in the commencement of the investigative judgment in 1844, for it was upon the discovery of this great truth that the remnant church was founded.

Our situation was foretold by John in the Revelation of Jesus Christ: "And the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God and have the testimony of Jesus Christ" (Revelation 12:17).

Which is the church that has traditionally claimed to be the remnant? Which advocates the keeping of all the Decalogue and has the testimony of Jesus in the manifestation of the Spirit of Prophecy? Only one church has ever made this claimthe Seventh-day Adventist Church.

But John tells that "the dragon [Satan] was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God and have the testimony of Jesus Christ." Today, having failed in his attacks from outside the Adventist denomination, Satan is attacking from within. He can do this quite easily because he has successfully insinuated a type of organization into the Seventh-day Adventist Church that is geared to meet the demands of a papal-like government as defmed by A. T. Jones. It happened in 1903 when, against the wishes of the church's prophet, A. G. Daniells allowed himself to be elected as president of a church government by men and for men.

This followed hard on the heels of the leaders' rejection of the 1888 message of righteousness by faith, which, although they may not have realized it, was probably the rejection of Jesus Christ as the head of the Seventh-day Adventist Church.

And so our leaders plunged headlong into a behavioral pattern that to this very day, continues to vindicate Mrs. E. G. White as a true seer of God. Listen to her predictions and see how they have come to pass:

“A new organization would be established. Books of a new order would be written. A system of intellectual philosophy would be introduced.” (1SM 204).

A "new order" has certainly been promoted with the publication of books like Questions on Doctrine and Movement of Destiny. They have ushered in a new order based on the intellectual philosophy of men who wish to meet the requirements of apostate Protestantism.

And what of the General Conference's latest official pronouncement on our doctrines? "Seventh-day Adventists Believe. .. "-a book written and published under the patronage of world president, Neal C. Wilson: Is it a book of a new order as predicted by our prophet?

In some respects, this book is a more subtle attack on our 1844 sanctuary message than its predecessors. As previously mentioned, it is a consensus explanation of a consensus statement on our fundamental beliefs. But as also pointed out, it goes further than previous books in drawing the logical conclusion that if the atonement was completed at the cross, then "the penitent believer can trust in this finished work of our Lord" ("Seventh-day Adventists Believe. .. ", p. 315).

This, then, makes an investigative judgment completely redundant; but this book is not honest enough to come out and openly deny the judgment that started in 1844. It tries to get around it by removing the professed followers of God as the subject of the judgment and, to use the expression of one Adventist minister, puts God in the "hotseat." It claims: "The issue is with God and the universe, not between God and the true child" (ibid. p. 326). But as we have already noted, this goes against the historic beliefs of Adventism and the inspired writings as shown in the SDA Bible Commentary.

And what of Mrs. White's claim of the introduction of a system of intellectual philosophy? As with the modern Sabbath School Quarterlies, "Seventh-day Adventists Believe. .. " quotes extensively from non-Adventist theologians along with the Spirit of Prophecy as though all were equally authoritative. God's Messenger was awake to such a ploy:

“There are men among us in responsible positions who hold that the opinions of a few conceited philosophers so-called, are more to be trusted than the truth of the Bible or the Testimonies of the Holy Spirit.” (5T 79).

One theologian in question is the late Dr. B. F. Westcott. On page 48, he is quoted in an attempt to explain the nature of Christ during His incarnation. Again he is cited on page 320 as an authority on the cleansing of the heavenly sanctuary.

Now, for our purpose, we are not much interested in what Westcott believed on Christ's nature, or on the sanctuary service either. It is the fact that the ministerial department of our General Conference regards his credentials as fitting him (and his ilk) to instruct us on Adventist beliefs.

Dr. B. F. Westcott and his colleague, Dr. Hort, were the two Cambridge professors who secretly produced a Greek New Testament based largely on the Roman Vaticanus and the Sinaiticus.*

* These two famous manuscripts represent the relatively rare, corrupted Western text; yet they figured largely in the Westcott-Hort Greek N.T. which was used in producing most of the modern versions. See Wilkinson, Our Authorized Version Vindicated, available from Harland Publications, P 0 Box 1, Rapidan, VA 22733, USA.

They secretly led the team of "revisers" of the Authorized Version to accept their New Testament, so that instead of ending up with a revision of the KJV, Protestantism was cumbered with a new translation and a Roman Catholic-inspired Bible (see chapter 25). Said Dr. John W. Burgon, Dean of Chichester, in his Revision Revised concerning the revisers:

“Our Revisers ... stand convicted of having deliberately rejected the words of Inspiration in every page, and of having substituted for them fabricated Readings which the Church has long since refused to acknowledge, or else has rejected with abhorrence and which only survive at this time in a little handful of documents of the most depraved type.” (Dedication, pp vi-vii, 1883).

It is not surprising that Westcott, although professing to be a Church of England clergyman, should cumber Protestantism with a Roman Catholic Bible, for he was already an ardent admirer of Romanism. In 1847 he wrote from France to his fiancee describing his idolatrous visit to a Roman Catholic monastery:

Fortunately we found the door open. It is very small, with one kneeling place; and behind a screen was a "Pieta" [statue of the Virgin Mary and dead Christ] the size of life. Had I been alone I could have knelt there for hours.” (Life of Westcott, vol. 1, p. 81).

While writing to the Archbishop of Canterbury on March 4, 1890, Westcott commented:

“No one now, I suppose, holds that the first three chapters of Genesis, for example, give a literal history.” (ibid., vol. 2, p. 69).

It is no wonder that he displayed little inhibition when tampering with the Scriptures, for he was able to write:

“The battle of the inspiration of scripture is yet to be fought.” (ibid., vol. 1, p. 94).

The authors of "Seventh-day Adventists Believe. .. " then call on Dr. F. F. Bruce to help explain Christ's nature (p. 48). This is the man under whom Desmond Ford studied theology at Manchester University. He is reputed to follow the Plymouth Brethren persuasion, and his system of prophetic interpretation lets the Roman Catholics off the "beastly" hook of Revelation 13. In his Foreword to Ford's book Daniel, Bruce says:

“The Gospel which he [Ford] proclaims is the Gospel which I acknowledge; may it continue to speed on and triumph.”

But that's not by any means all the non-Adventist theologians who are called upon to confuse us on the nature of Christ.

It is difficult to find out from "Seventh-day Adventists Believe ... " just what SDAs do believe or even are supposed to believe. Dr. R. Larson claims that this book is now teaching the post-lapsarian nature (Our Firm Foundation, September 1988), while S. R. Buckley claims it is teaching holy flesh. (Omega of Apostasy, p. 7).* 

* It is apparent that the authors of "SDAs Believe. .. " have moved away from the dogmatic Position taken in QOD and MOD, that Christ took the unfallen nature of Adam. The author takes the view that after such indisputable evidence as recently given by R. Larson, D. Priebe and L. B. Kostenko, upholding the "fallen nature," thinking students would hesitate to put their credibility on the line by appearing to refute them. 

Yet, if "SDAs Believe. .. " were to come out for the "fallen nature," the very basis of apostate Adventism would be removed, and the credibility of those who recommended and upheld Froom's work would suffer. Hence the obfuscation. As N. C. Wilson was the chairman of the guiding committee for MOD and highly recommended the book in his Preface, and is given credit for authorizing and encouraging the ministerial association to produce "SDAs Believe ...p.v), we can see the predicament in which such people find themselves. 

The historic SDA biblical position could easily have been made clear by quoting a few strong statements from the Bible and the Spirit of Prophecy, e.g. Romans 8:3; Hebrews 2:16-17; Hebrews 4:15; The Desire of Ages, pp. 49, 112, 117).

Now, they call upon Dr. Philip Schaff to throw in his ideas (p. 48). This is the man who brought his "historical development" theory from Europe to America, which gave rise to what became known as the "Mercersburg Movement"seen by some as a counterpart of the Oxford Movement in England. It was seen by the New Brunswick Review, May 1954, as a defense of Romanism and an attack on American Protestantism (see chapter 24). In short, the authors of "Seventh-day Adventists Believe. .. " seem to find it prudent to use the thoughts of another Protestant traitor in an effort to aid their cause.

Yes, friends, we are talking about the books of which Mrs. White warned-the "books of a new order" based on a "system of intellectual philosophy." It is produced, recommended and distributed by a type of government resembling that "new order" type which God's Prophet condemned.

It is this type of organization, allowed to remain in place since 1903, which has continued to restrain the outpouring of the latter rain and to delay the consequent return in glory of our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ. The futility of such a form of government was a foregone conclusion in view of the dire consequences predicted by Mrs. White back in 1904:

“The enemy of souls has sought to bring in the supposition that a great reformation was to take place among Seventh-day Adventists, and that this reformation would consist in giving up the doctrines which stand as the pillars of our faith, and engaging in a process of reorganization.” (1SM 204).

Although God's Anointed specifically mentioned the attack on our sanctuary doctrine and the messages of the three angels of Revelation 14, she also indicated that such messages vital to Adventism would not be lost:

“We are God's commandment-keeping people. For the past fifty years every phase of heresy has been brought to bear upon us, to becloud our minds regarding the teaching of the Word-especially concerning the ministration of Christ in the heavenly sanctuary, and the message of Heaven for these last days, as given by the angels of the fourteenth chapter of Revelation. Messages of every order and kind have been urged upon Seventh-day Adventists, to take the place of the truth which, point by point, has been sought out by prayerful study, and testified to by the miracle-working power of the Lord. But the waymarks which have made us what we are, are to be preserved, and they will be preserved, as God has signified through His Word and the testimony of His Spirit. He calls upon us to hold firmly, with the grip of faith, to the fundamental principles that are based upon unquestionable authority.” (1SM 208).

How encouraging, then, to know that the great prophetic truths entrusted to God's remnant church are to be preserved! Our leaders may fail, but God's truth will prevail. Does this not suggest that God's truth will triumph without the present type of government, which has been in place since 1903? Our church's acknowledged authority on its sanctuary doctrine, Elder M. L. Andreasen, thought so back in the 1950s.

“This denomination needs to go back to the instruction given in 1888, which was scorned. We need a reform in organization that will not permit a few men to direct every move made anywhere in the world... .

“We need a reformation and revival most of all. If our leaders will not lead in this then shall there enlargement and deliverance arise to the Jews from another place.” Esther 4:14 (Andreasen, Letters to the Churches, no. 6).

Note by Ron: Ellen White said the apostasy will wax stronger until Jesus comes. This is why Ezekiel 9 begins at His Sanctuary. 5T 211 and Ezekiel 9:6.

"One thing it is certain is soon to be realized, the great apostasy, which is developing and increasing and waxing stronger, and will continue to do so until the Lord shall descend from heaven with a shout. We are to hold fast the first principles of our denominated faith, and go forward from strength to increased faith. Ever we are to keep the faith that has been substantiated by the Holy Spirit of God from the earlier events of our experience until the present time. We need now larger breadth, and deeper, more earnest, unwavering faith in the leadings of the Holy Spirit. If we needed the manifest proof of the Holy Spirit's power to confirm truth in the beginning, after the passing of the time, we need to-day all the evidence in the confirmation of the truth, when souls are departing from the faith and giving heed to seducing spirits and doctrines of devils. There must not be any languishing of soul now." (E.G. White, Special Testimonies, Series B, No. 7, p. 57).

End Chapter 26

CHAPTER 27  - Eighteen Forty-Four to Evermore

Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man. Ecclesiastes 12:13.

As we look at the Seventh-day Adventist Church today, we have every reason to take courage. Never in its history have we seen such an upsurge of ministries by Seventh-day Adventists that are independent of the church organization. Never before have we seen the great truths contained in the books of the Spirit of Prophecy being printed and distributed at low cost by independent publishers. Many independent colporteurs, while selling low-cost copies of The Desire of Ages, Bible Readings and The Great Controversy, are deluged with opportunities to explain the three angels' messages to inquiring souls-especially those who have questioned the dogmas of Roman Catholicism.

Independent ministries are not new. Wherever and whenever God's appointed agents have faltered, there have arisen messengers of God, ready and able to fill the gap. When Elder Daniells and others showed their determination to organize in a way contrary to the instruction of Mrs. White, she began to encourage the setting up of self-supporting work. She actually helped to set up a self-supporting school near Madison, Tennessee, USA, and instructed the two principal founders, Brethren E. A. Sutherland and Percy T. Magan, to stay separate from the organization (refer Spalding-Magan Collection of E.G.W. Unpublished Testimonies, pp 411, 412).*

* Madison College was later absorbed into the organized work and eventually ceased to exist.

Today, with the understandable proliferation of independent ministries, Satan as ever, seeks opportunity to jump on the bandwagon and divert ministry from its rightful course. We should be aware that such ministries are particularly vulnerable through their Boards of Directors, which can be infiltrated relatively easily by imposters in the same way as institutions and sections of the organized body of the church have been diverted from their original purposes. It seems that the smaller the ministry and the simpler its type of organization, the less vulnerable it is to Satan's plans. That is why there is no substitute for committed men and women who, acting as individuals under the unction of the Holy Spirit, develop their God-given talents and allow themselves to be used of God to save precious souls.

Nowhere is such ministry more apparent than in lands where the Church has succumbed to the demands of state and abandoned those of its membership who refuse to bow to Baal. Today in Hungary, the largest single congregation of Seventh-day Adventists is to be found outside the General Conference and state-recognized churches. The unrecognized congregations are rapidly increasing because they have not abandoned the message as revealed to God's remnant people following 1844.

Independent reports from Christian organizations concerned with religious affairs in the [former] USSR indicate that the "underground" branches of Christianity are thriving. In the case of those calling themselves Seventh-day Adventists, it is estimated that there are more in the "underground" church than in the officially-recognized church.

Many sincere members of the Seventh-day Adventist Church have come to regard the church as Babylon. This they suppose to be true as they see that Babylonians have taken over control of some key positions in our work. But to accept such a proposition is merely to legitimize the position of those usurpers who have set up a papal-like form of government to promote heresies of the anti-Christ. In modern parlance, it's like accepting the authority of hijackers.

Note by Ron: Even though Sister White said that the church could become a sister to fallen Babylon, we should not designate the church as Babylon for the important reason that the Bible makes important proclamations regarding spiritual “JERUSALEM,” such as in Ezekiel 9 it says “begin at my Sanctuary,” verse 6, and Isaiah 37:31, 32, say:

Isa 37:31   And the remnant that is escaped of the house of Judah shall again take root downward, and bear fruit upward: 

Isa 37:32   For out of Jerusalem shall go forth a remnant, and they that escape out of mount Zion: the zeal of the LORD of hosts shall do this. 

Ellen White said Ezekiel 9 will be literally fulfilled. In A.D. 27-66, in the first literal fulfillment of Ezekiel 9, a faithful remnant went out of apostate “JERUSALEM,” AND IF THAT IS LITERALLY FULFILLED AGAIN, as it will be, then if we call the apostate SDA church Babylon, Isaiah 37:31, 32 would not apply. The apostate church is the Synagogue of Satan, just as Jesus referred to the apostate Jewish organization as the Synagogue of Satan, but let’s keep the nomenclature pure and clear. The SDA church is apostate spiritual Jerusalem, out of which a final remnant will “GO FORTH OUT,” as well as the final call to come out of the fallen Babylonian churches. Let’s not mix them up and muddy the waters! Apostate Adventism is WORSE than Babylon, because it knew the truth.

The Synagogue of Satan will include Babylonians as well as apostate “Jerusalonians!”

End note by Ron.

Such imposters are not new to Adventism. Mrs. White went to considerable pains to point out that the remnant church is not, and cannot be, Babylon. Such would be a contradiction in terms, for it is the remnant or last church which gives the call to come out of Babylon, and to keep God's commandments. It has the testimony of Jesus. Such an assumption would be self-destroying and illogical. In 1893, Sister White was constrained to write to a "Brother S" in Napier, New Zealand, 

“My brother, if you are teaching that the Seventh-day Adventist Church is Babylon, you are wrong.” (TM 59).

She had just explained to "Brother S" that:

“The second angel's message was to go to Babylon [the churches] proclaiming her downfall, and calling the people to come out of her. The same message is to be proclaimed the second time. "And after these things I saw another angel come down from heaven, having great power, and the earth was lightened with his glory. And he cried mightily with a strong voice, saying Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen, and is become the habitation of devils, and the hold of every foul spirit, and a cage of every unclean and hateful bird.... 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" (ibid., p. 59).

And so, loyal Seventh-day Adventists today are faced with a dilemma. They see the church being controlled by some who, far from calling people to come out of Babylon, are deliberately misusing the resources of the Church to take us back to Babylon! Are we to stand idly by and support such subversive activities by our silence? As stewards of God, have we not been given the responsibility to see that the means entrusted to us are used fully to warn the world of the great judgment-hour message?

Fortunately, God in His great wisdom and mercy has not left His people without a prophet to guide us through end-time events. We shall turn to Inspiration for guidance and reassurance.

Contrary to what some of our leaders may wish us to believe, the General Conference does not constitute God's remnant church as claimed in the U. S. Supreme Court (see chapter 25). Paul defines the church of the living God as "the pillar and ground of truth" (1 Timothy 3:15). Seventh-day Adventists have traditionally believed that we have been entrusted with the truth for the last days of earth's history. Of this church, God's Messenger has said,

“God has a church on earth who are lifting up the downtrodden law, and presenting to the world the Lamb of God that taketh away the sins of the world. The church is the depository of the wealth of the riches of the grace of Christ, and through the church eventually will be made manifest the final and full display of the love of God to the world that is to be lightened with its glory”. (TM 50).

If the General Conference of SDAs circulates teaching contrary to the "pillars and ground of the truth," can it honestly claim to be the voice of God? Mrs. White was constrained to pass judgment on our General Conference leaders back in the year 1901, for less obvious heresies:

“That these men should stand in the sacred place to be the voice of God to the people, as we once believed the General Conference to be, that is past.” (G. C. Bulletin, 1901, p. 25).

That is why God's Messenger called for, and got, a reorganization of the General Conference. But as we have seen, this reorganization was all too short-lived. How much more applicable are the words of the Prophet today:

“A strange thing has come into our churches. Men who are placed in positions of responsibility that they may be wise helpers to their fellow workers have come to suppose that they were set as kings and rulers in the churches to say to one brother, do this; to another, do that; and to another, be sure to labor in such and such a way.” (TM 477).

Is not this the spirit which now motivates the actions of leaders who refuse to allow loyal Adventist veterans to travel around the conferences feeding the words of life to truth-starved souls? Are such so-called leaders able to transmit the will of God? According to Mrs. White, we place in peril our own salvation when we sanction or assist those who are not in harmony with truth and righteousness.

“I call upon God's people to open their eyes. When you sanction or carry out the decisions of men who, as you know, are not in harmony with truth and righteousness, you weaken your own faith, and lose your relish for communion with God.” (TM 91).

As if this warning were not enough, God's servant warns of terrible woes against both those who carry on, and those who support the work of an unsanctified ministry.

“If God pronounces a woe upon those who are called to preach the truth and refuse to obey, a heavier woe rests upon those who take upon them this sacred work without clean hands and pure hearts. As there are woes for those who preach the truth while they are unsanctified in heart and life, so there are woes for those who receive and "maintain" the unsanctified in the position which they cannot fill.” (2T 552).

Does Mrs. White have anything else to say about supporting those who are not upholding the messages entrusted to Seventh-day Adventists? Yes, she does:

“It would be poor policy to support from the treasury of God those who really mar and injure His work, and who are constantly lowering the standard of Christianity.” (3T 553).

Do our leaders who have supported and continue to support such errors and/or fabrications as found in some of our official publications, come under the category of those who mar and injure God's work? Hear the answer from God's Messenger:

“The men who close their eyes to divine light are ignorant, deplorably ignorant, both of the Scriptures and the power of God. The Holy Spirit's working is not agreeable to them, and they attribute its manifestations to fanaticism. They rebel against the light, and do all they can to shut it out, calling darkness light, and light darkness....

“Those who entertain and speak this belief do not know what they are talking about. They are cherishing a love of darkness; and just as long as these Christless souls are retained in positions of responsibility, the cause of God is imperiled.” (TM 284).

So we see that as long as such leadership are in position they are imperiling the cause of God (i.e. His church and its mission). These are the ones who are exploiting the "new order" organization about which Mrs. White warned. She gives the reason why such men are attracted to presidential types of government:

“But some men, as soon as they are placed in sacred positions of trust, regard themselves as great men; and this thought, if entertained, ends the desire for divine enlightenment, which is the only possible thing that can make men great.” (ibid.).

Do we as stewards have a responsibility when it comes to determining how we should support God's work? Or should we leave it up to the "great men" to direct all the means which God has entrusted to us? The Lord's anointed laid down a very important principle of stewardship when she sent special instruction from Cooranbong, New South Wales, relating to the Review and Herald office and work in Battle Creek:

“But the Lord has made us individually His stewards. We each hold a solemn responsibility to invest this means ourselves. God does not lay upon you the burden of asking the Conference, or any council of men, whether you shall use your means as you see fit to advance the work of God in destitute towns and cities and impoverished localities.” (Letter No. 68, 1896).

As for the ultimate destination and purpose of the tithe, she was very definite:

“The tithe should go to those who labor in word and doctrine, be they men or women.” (Ev 492).

Now, as Seventh-day Adventists, we know what kind of doctrinal preaching Mrs. White is referring to, don't we?

Is it the kind of doctrine that robs Jesus Christ of His qualification to be our High Priest, by saying that He did not overcome while being tempted like us? (See Hebrews 4:15).

Is it the kind of doctrine that tells us that Christ's atonement was completed at the cross and thus gives support to the popular evangelical view that His work of salvation was also complete, and there is therefore no need for an investigative judgment?

Is it the kind of doctrine that appears to Adventists to uphold still the historic belief in the judgment, yet seeks to maintain some credibility with the evangelicals by putting God in the "hot-seat" and judging Him?

The answer, of course, is perfectly obvious. Such preachers are the ones that have got our church organization into bed with the popular evangelicalsthe daughters of Babylon. They are not the people whom Mrs. White describes as being worthy of the tithe because they do not "labor in word and doctrine." They labor with "cunning" words and "craftiness" as described by Paul, to undermine our doctrines (Ephesians 4:14).

These are the leaders who, because they are the equivalent of biblical hirelings, will desert the cause of God. They will not stay in the church once they are deprived of their sustenance and experience persecution. Such a time is known as the "shaking time" and this shaking experience has already started in the Seventh-day Adventist Church, especially in lands where there is state and church intolerance of religion. Back in 1876, Mrs. White said,

 “God is now sifting His people-testing their purposes and their motives. Many will be but as chaff no wheat, no value in them.” (4T 51).

And in 1900 she warned about failure to obey what God has set before us as truth:

“We are in the shaking time, the time when everything that can be shaken will be shaken. The Lord will not excuse those who know the truth if they do not in word and deed obey His commandments.” (6T 332)

Note by Ron: Although it is true that some SDA leaders won’t remain in the apostate church because they want to go back to Babylon, it is NOT true that all the bad will leave. In the last literal fulfillment of Ezekiel 9, read Ezekiel 22:17-31 to learn EXACTLY WHERE THE APOSTATE JEWS WERE GATHERED—“into the midsts of Jerusalem, for burning and melting.” So it will be in the next literal fulfillment of Ezekiel 9, Ezekiel 9:6, and Testimonies, Vol. 5, p. 211. The chapter begins on p. 207, quoting Ezekiel 9. End note.

God in His mercy has extended the time of probation in our fair lands of Australasia. But His servant warns us:

“Just as soon as God's people are sealed and prepared for the shaking, it will come. Indeed, it has begun already; the judgments of God are now upon the land, to give us warning, that we may know what is coming.” (4BC 1161).

But God's followers must not be complacent, nor expect sanctification without obedience:

“As the storm approaches, a large class who have professed faith in the third angel's message, but who have not been sanctified through obedience to the truth, abandon their position, and join the ranks of the opposition.” (GC 608).

Now is the time for every loyal follower of Christ, every committed Seventh-day Adventist, to encourage our fellow believers and warn those who have not as yet seen the light. To fail to do so is to sanction apostasy and invite spiritual disaster.

“When you sanction or carry out the decisions of men who, as you know, are not in harmony with truth and righteousness, you weaken your own faith, and lose your relish for communion with God.” (TM 91).

Here is a warning and a promise:

“The work which the church has failed to do in a time of peace and prosperity she will have to do in a terrible crisis under most discouraging circumstances.... At that time the superficial, conservative class, whose influence has steadily retarded the progress of the work will renounce their faith.” (5T 463).

So, as we of God's remnant people give the trumpet a "certain sound," we may take courage in the fact that those who are responsible for hindering the finishing of the work, and thus delaying Christ's return, will be removed from us. And again, the servant of the Lord says,

“In the absence of persecution there have drifted into our ranks, men who appear sound and their Christianity unquestionable, but who, if persecution should arise, would go out from us.” (Ev 60).

Note by Ron: They go out from Zion, the bride, Isaiah 62 and COL 405-406, which are “gathered out” to give the gospel to the world, Desire of Ages, 232. End note.

“In the light of increased willingness shown in recent years for certain leaders of our church to assiduously promote heresy under the cloak of supposed truth, how much more relevant are the warnings of our Prophet to these closing days of earth's history! Only as we understand the sinister workings of the dragon's wrath against God's remnant people, can we interpret the signs in a way which will quell discouragement and enable us to fortify our minds and hearts for the great battle ahead. We will then be fully aware that the contest is between the commandments of God and the commandments of men. In this time, the gold will be separated from the dross in the church.” (5T 81).

Note by Ron: The context of 5T 81, is the time of the National Sunday Law apostasy. In that time, the gold will be separated from the dross in all apostate churches. But that does not mean that God will not have a faithful bride He has separated, and I refer to the 144,000 who are without blame, Rev. 14:1-4, and Ellen White said that it is impossible to unite with the corrupt and remain/become pure. So the bride could never mature amongst the apostates. That is why Jesus “gathered out” those who would take the gospel to the world in His day. Desire of Ages, 232. We were to JOIN not NEW MOVEMENT, so Satan came in and formed one AMONG/WITHIN the once SDA church, 1SM 204-206. That New Movement “removed God,” ibid. p. 205. There is only one other master left. End note.

If, through faith, we will follow Christ in His great saving work of atonement, it follows that we will have a faith that also enables obedience. God's power will then energize even those of us who are retiring and reticent by nature.

“Those who have been timid and self-distrustful, will declare themselves openly for Christ and His truth. The most weak and hesitating in the church, will be as Davidwilling to do and dare.” (ibid.).

The final stages of the Church's march to victory will not be characterized by timidity, doubts and despair. Memories of those who have led God's children into apostasy will, with their heresies, be reduced to mere asterisks in the great controversy between Christ and Satan. God's Prophet has dramatically portrayed the remnant church of Christ, when it has been purged of "dross," as a pure but militant army, “fair as the moon, clear as the sun, terrible as an army with banners.” (5T 82).

God's Messenger to the remnant is not describing an army of people who have been tricked into following the commandments of men. No! She is speaking of those who keep the commandments of God and proclaim the message of 1844 to Evermore.

Final note by Ron: Ellen White clearly prophesied the final fate of the SDA church militant:

PROLEPSIS PROPHETIC STATEMENT:

Prolepsis http://www.dictionary.com/browse/prolepsis?s=t

[proh-lep-sis]

noun, plural pro·lep·ses [proh-lep-seez] /proʊˈlɛpsiz/.

1. Rhetoric. the anticipation of possible objections in order to answer them in advance.

2. The assigning of a person, event, etc., to a period earlier than the actual one; the representation of something in the future as if it already existed or had occurred; prochronism.

3. The use of a descriptive word in anticipation of its becoming applicable.

4. A fundamental conception or assumption in Epicureanism or Stoicism arising spontaneously in the mind without conscious reflection; thought provoked by sense perception.

5. Pathology. the return of an attack of a periodic disease or of a paroxysm before the expected time or at progressively shorter intervals.

Here is the Spirit of Prophecy prophesied prolepsis statement regarding the final fate of that once Noble Ship. This is a major LYNCHPIN to my warning message. Can you explain it away? Are you a passenger on this once NOBLE SHIP, that is about to sink to rise no more?

NOTICE WHO SEPARATES FROM WHOM:

 

"Jesus sends HIS PEOPLE a message of warning to prepare them for his coming. To the prophet John was made known the closing work in the great plan of man's redemption. He beheld an angel flying 'in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach unto them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people, saying with a loud voice, Fear God, and give glory to him for the hour of his Judgment is come and worship him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters [Rev. 14:6, 7.].

The angel represented in prophecy as delivering this message,  symbolizes a class of faithful men, who, obedient to the promptings of God's Spirit and the teachings of his word, proclaim this warning to the inhabitants of earth. This message was not to be committed to the religious leaders of the people. They had failed to preserve their connection with God, and had REFUSED THE LIGHT FROM HEAVEN therefore they WERE NOT of the number described by the apostle Paul: 'But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief. Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day we are not of the night nor of darkness' [1 Thess. 5:4, 5]. 

The watchmen upon the walls of Zion should be the first to catch the tidings of the Saviour's advent, the first to lift their voices to proclaim him near, the first to warn the people to prepare for his coming. But they were at ease, dreaming of peace and safety, while the people were asleep in their sins. Jesus saw HIS CHURCH, like the barren fig-tree, covered with pretentious leaves, yet destitute of precious fruit. There was a boastful observance of the forms of religion, while the spirit of true humility, penitence and faith--which alone could render the service acceptable to God--was lacking. Instead of the graces of the Spirit, there were manifested pride, formalism, vainglory, selfishness, oppression. A BACKSLIDING CHURCH closed their eyes to the signs of the times. God did nor forsake them, or suffer his faithfulness to fail but they departed from him, and SEPARATED THEMSELVES from his love. As they REFUSED TO COMPLY WITH THE CONDITIONS, his promises were NOT FULFILLED to them."  E.G. White, The Spirit of Prophecy, Vol. 4, pp. 199-200 [The 1884 edition of The Great Controversy, 199, 200].

 

Note these important delineations in the above statement:

·       Ellen White is addressing HIS PEOPLE.

·       Ellen White is addressing those to whom God committed the EVERLASTING GOSPEL of Revelation 14.

·       Ellen White is defining the angel represented in prophecy as symbolizing a class of faithful men.

·       Ellen White is saying emphatically that the final Loud Cry message is delivered NOT BY THE LEADERS OF THE SDA CHURCH, but by a class of faithful men, because the leaders had failed to preserve their connection with God and had refused light from heaven!

·       Ellen White is addressing "watchmen upon the walls of Zion," NOT FALLEN BABYLON!

·       Twice Ellen White mentions HIS CHURCH, NOT FALLEN BABYLON.

·       It is the MEMBERS of said church that SEPARATE FROM GOD, AND THAT IS WHY WE HAVE TO SEPARATE FROM THEM OR BE CORPORATELY RESPONSIBLE FOR THEIR APOSTASY.

·       The above reasons are why there is another coming out of a faithful remnant FROM APOSTATE JERUSALEM AS WELL AS FALLEN BABYLON.

·       Isa 37:31   And the remnant that is escaped of the house of Judah shall again take root downward, and bear fruit upward: 

·       Isa 37:32   For out of Jerusalem shall go forth a remnant, and they that escape out of mount Zion: the zeal of the LORD of hosts shall do this. 

Ellen White is addressing a BACKSLIDING CHURCH whose leaders and laity alike failed and rejected light from heaven and who refused to comply with the conditions so that God's promises are not fulfilled to them. Consider the following commentary on the 1884 Great Controversy that the above statement is quoted from:

“Consider for a few moments the chapter in the first edition of Great Controversy, Volume IV, published by Pacific Press in 1884. In Chapter XXVII, ‘The Snares of Satan,’ you find that about four pages in the latter part of the chapter were omitted from the later editions of Great Controversy. These four pages are to be found in Testimonies to Ministers, pages 472 to 475. The information contained in these four pages is very valuable to Seventh-day Adventists and was very appropriately included in the first edition of Great Controversy, Volume IV, which when it was published was like the other volumes considered to be A MESSAGE ESPECIALLY TO SEVENTH-DAY ADVENTISTS, and to [all] Christian people sympathizing with them in beliefs and aims.” W. C. White, Selected Messages, Appendix C, pp. 452, 453.

Never forget this friend of mine: If all the bad leave the apostate SDA church, EZEKIEL 9 WOULD NOT BEGIN THERE AS IT DID WITH THE APOSTATE JEWISH CHURCH!

Study Ezekiel 9  "Study the 9th chapter of Ezekiel. These words will be literally fulfilled yet the time is passing, and the people are asleep. They refuse to humble their souls and to be converted. Not a great while longer will the Lord bear with the people who have such great and important truths revealed to them, but who refuse to bring these truths into their individual experience. The time is short. God is calling will YOU hear? Will YOU receive His message? Will YOU be converted before it is too late? Soon, very soon, every case will be decided for eternity. Letter 106, 1909, pp. 2, 3, 5, 7. (To "The churches in Oakland and Berkeley, September 26, 1909.)" E. G. White Manuscript Releases Volume One, p. 260.

“The ruin of Jerusalem was a symbol of the final ruin that shall overwhelm the world. The prophecies that received a partial fulfillment in the overthrow of Jerusalem have a more direct application to the last days. We are now standing on the threshold of great and solemn events. A crisis is before us, such as the world has never witnessed. ” Thoughts From the Mount of Blessing, pp. 120, 121.

“The time will soon come when the prophecy of Ezekiel 9 will be fulfilled; that prophecy should be carefully studied, for it will be fulfilled to the very letter.”— Ellen G. White 1888 Materials, p. 1303.

End Final Chapter 27

Appendixes to Follow

 

Appendix for Chapter 10

Evangelist J. B. Conley on Nature of Christ, Australian Signs of the Times, 25 May 1948

But the Scriptures have placed the identity of antichrist beyond either guesswork or confusion. The Bible has clearly named the guilty one. John says that he denies that "Jesus Christ is come in the flesh." 2 John 7. Let this be the first mark of antichrist by which his identity will be placed beyond dispute. The verse does not say that antichrist denies that Jesus is come, but that he denies "He is come in the flesh." Far from denying the existence of Christ, the text suggests that antichrist teaches that Christ has come but teaches a doctrine about His coming which denies that "He is come in the flesh." If the Catholic Church is guilty, as the Protestant Reformers claimed her to be, then her teaching concerning the nature of Jesus in His incarnation into this world as a babe will reveal it. Let us examine that teaching in the light of the text before us.

The Bible teaches that Jesus was born into the world through Mary, who was a direct descendent of Adam. By inheritance she partook of Adam's nature. Adam's nature was mortal and subject to death as a result of the transgression of God's will in Eden. His flesh was by nature that of the "children of Wrath." Mary partook of this nature in all its aspects. She was a representative of the whole human race, and in no way different from others descended from Adam's line. She was "favoured among women" only because she was the one chosen of God through whom the "mystery of godliness was to be made manifest," and through whom Jesus was to be incarnated into the fleshly state of Adam's race. It was God's purpose that through a divine miracle Jesus should be brought from heaven, where He had been one with the Father in the Godhead, to be born into the human family, there to partake of all the temptations to which Adam's race is subject. This was possible only as He would partake of the nature of Adam's race. Of this Paul says, "Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, He also Himself likewise took part of the same.... Wherefore in all things it behoved Him to be made like unto His brethren." Hebrews 2:14-17.

If further evidence were needed the same writer supplied it. In 1 Timothy 3:16 he records: "Great is the mystery of godliness. God was manifest in the flesh." Here, he says, is the mystery of godliness, the ability of Jesus to come from heaven, suffer Himself to be manifest in human flesh, and yet to live sinlessly.

This latter fact antichrist was to deny. He was to deny that Jesus came in a divine manifestation which brought Him in all phases of His nature to partake of the weakness of Adam's race. He would deny that Jesus came "in the flesh," the same flesh as that of mortal men. On this first count, the denial that Jesus "is come in the flesh," the Catholic Church stands convicted of guilt and thus is identified by the marks of antichrist. Through the teaching of the "Immaculate Conception of Mary," that she was preserved from all original sin, they in theory provide "different flesh" from that of the rest of Adam's race to be the avenue through which Jesus was incarnated into the plan of salvation. To state their teaching with authority, it will be best to quote our evidence from Catholic authors.

Our first proof will be from the pen of Cardinal Gibbons in his book, Faith of our Fathers, pages 203, 204. He says: "We define that the blessed Virgin Mary in the first moment of her conception ... was preserved free from the taint of original sin. Unlike the rest of the children of Adam, the soul of Mary was never subject to sin."

Cardinal Gibbons has here clearly stated the teaching of the Roman Catholic

Church concerning the sinlessness of the Virgin Mary. It is a teaching not taught in the Bible, but which has been introduced by Catholic teachers who claim to have authority even above that of the Scriptures, in matters of doctrine.

Here I would ask my readers, both Protestant and Catholic, to ponder carefully what this teaching does to the gospel plan. It means that if Mary was born without sin and was preserved from sin for the express purpose of bringing Jesus into the world, then Jesus was born of holy flesh, which was different from that of the rest of Adam's race. This means that He did not take upon Himself our kind of flesh and blood, and in His incarnation did not identify Himself with humanity. It means, too, that He was not tempted "in all points" as we were. It means that Paul was all wrong when he wrote the Book of Hebrews in which he declares that Jesus "also Himself likewise took part of the same" flesh as the rest of Adam's race, that "in all things" He was made "like unto His brethren" Hebrews 2:14, 17. 

But above all this, if the Catholic teaching is true, then Jesus, not having come within reach of humanity by partaking of man's nature, cannot be the "one mediator between God and men." Nor can we "come boldly unto the throne of grace that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need" Hebrews 4:16. All this plays conveniently into the hands of the Catholic plan of salvation. It opens wide the door for the intercession of the Virgin Mary and the respective "saints," who form part of the papal mediatorial system. And moreover, it places in the hands of the priesthood the power to usurp authority which God in the Scriptures has never delegated to themthat of being controllers of the approaches to the throne of mercy.

At this stage of our review of the subject of antichrist, I believe all fairminded people will acknowledge that if the Papacy is not the antichrist it has been singularly unfortunate in being so like the scriptural description of him. In the papal claim that Jesus was born of one who had been "preserved from every taint of original sin" and who "unlike the rest of the children of Adam ... was never subject to sin," we find the first mark of antichrist indelibly implanted. The Papacy certainly teaches that Jesus Christ did "not come in the flesh."

 

Appendix for Chapter 13

Elder A. T. Jones' Letter to G. C. President A. G. Daniells, January 26, 1906 (portions only)

Then came the General Conference at Battle Creek. According to the arrangements I was to report the proceedings of the Conference; and according to the arrangements, Brothers Prescott and Waggoner were not expected evidently to have even that much to do. But before the Conference actually assembled in session, there occurred that meeting in the Library room of the College Building, in which Sister White spoke on General Conference matters and organization, declaring that there must be "an entire new organization and to have a Committee that shall take in not merely half a dozen that is to be a ruling and controlling power, but it is to have representatives of those that are placed in responsibility in our educational interests, in our Sanitariums, etc., that there should be a renovation without delay. To have this Conference pass on and close up as the Conferences have done, with the same manipulating, with the very same tone, and the same order-God forbid! God forbid, brethren.... And until this come we might just as well close up the Conference today as any other day.... This thing has been continued for the last fifteen years or more, [1901 minus 15 takes us back to 1886], and God calls for a change.

"God wants a change, and it is high time-it is high time that there was ability that should connect with the Conference, with the General Conference right here in this city. Not wait until it is done and over with, and then gather up the forces and see what can be done. We want to know what can be done right now. "From the light that I have, as it was presented to me in figures. There was a narrow compass here; there within that narrow compass is a king-like, a kingly ruling power. God means what He says and He says, "I want a change here."

"Will it be the same thing? Going over and over the same ideas, the same committees-and here is the little throne-the king is in there, and these others are all secondary. God wants those committees that have been handling things for so long should be relieved of their command and have a chance for their life and see if they cannot get out of this rut that they are in-which I have no hope of their getting out of, because the Spirit of God has been working and working, and yet the king is in there still. Now the Lord wants His Spirit to come in. He wants the Holy Ghost King.

"From the light that I have had for some time, and has been expressed, over and over again, not to all that are here, but has been expressed to individuals-the plan, that God would have all to work from, that never should one mind, or two minds or three minds, nor four minds, or a few minds I should say be considered of sufficient wisdom and power to control and mark out plans and let it rest upon the minds of one or two or three in regard to this broad field that we have.

"And all the work all over our field demands an entirely different course of action than we have had; that there needs the laying of a foundation that is different from what we have had. ... In all these countries, far, and near, He wants to be an arousing, broadening, enlarging power. And a management which is getting confused in itself-not that anyone is wrong or means to be wrong, but the principle is wrong, and the principles have become so mixed and so fallen from what God's principles are.

"These things have been told, and this stand-still has got to come to an end. But yet every Conference has woven after the same pattern, it is the very same loom that carries it, and finally it will come to nought."

She declared that God wants us to take hold of this work, every human agency. Each one is to act in their capacity in such a way that the confidence of the whole people will be established in them and that they will not be afraid, but see everything just as light as day until they are in connection with the work of God and the whole people.... All the provision was made in heaven, all the facilities, all the riches of the grace of God was imparted to every worker that was connected with the cause, and every one of these are wholly dependent upon God. And when we leave God out of the question, and allow hereditary and cultivated traits of character to come in, let me tell you, we are on very slippery ground.

God hath His servants-His church, established in the earth, composed of many members, but of one body; that in every part of the work one part must work as connected with another part, and that with another part, and with another part, and these are joined together by the golden links of heaven and there is to be no kings in the midst of all. There is to be no man that has the right to put his hand out and say: No you can not go there. We won't support you if you go there. Why, what have you to do with the supporting? Did you create the means? The means comes from the people. And those who are in destitute fields-the voice of God has told me to instruct them to go to the people and tell them their necessities, and to draw all the people to work just where they can find a place to work, to build up the work in every place they can.

Upon that instruction and much more to the same effect in that talk you and Brother Prescott and others took hold of the matter pertaining to the then pending General Conference [1901], set aside entirely the old order of things, and started it new. At the opening of the General Conference, April 2, Sister White spoke briefly to the same effect as in the College Building the day before. Brother Irwin followed with a few words; and then you spoke a few words and introduced a motion that the usual rules and precedents for arranging and transacting the business of the Conference be suspended, and the General Committee be hereby appointed ... to constitute a general or central committee, which shall do such work as necessarily must be done in providing the work of the Conference, and preparing the business to bring before the delegates. Thus the new order of things was started.

The night of that very first day of the Conference, I was appointed to preach the sermon. Since I had been appointed to report the proceedings I expected to have no preaching or other work to do. Therefore when I was called to preach that one time during the conference, and have me do it at the beginning, so that I could go on afterwards unmolested with the reporting. I spoke on Church Organization. When that meeting was over, I supposed that my preaching during the Conference was done. Therefore, I was surprised when only two days afterwards-April 4, you came to me at the reporter's table and said we want you to preach tonight! I said I supposed that my preaching was over, since I have the reporting to do. I can not do this and preach often. You said to me, "You have light for the people, and we want them to have it." I consented and preached again on the subject of Church Organization, developing the subject further, and on the same principles precisely as on the night of April 2.

In that Conference [1901] the General Conference was started toward the calledfor-reorganization. All understood that the call was away from a centralized order of things in which one man or two men or three or four men or a few men held the ruling and directing power, to an organization in which, all the people as individuals should have a part, with God, in Christ, by the Holy Spirit as the unifying, and directing power. Indeed, the day before my second sermon on organization, Sister White had said, April 3, we want to understand that there are no gods in our Conference. There are to be no kings here, and no kings in any Conference that is formed, "All ye are brethren."

"The Lord wants to bind those at this Conference heart to heart. No man is to say I am a god, and you must do as I say. From the beginning to the end this is wrong. There is to be an individual work. God says, "Let him take hold of My strength that he may make peace with Me and he shall make peace with Me."

"Remember that God can give wisdom to those who handle His work. It is not necessary to send thousands of miles to Battle Creek for advice, and then have to wait weeks before an answer can be received. Those who are right on the ground are to decide what shall be done. You know what you have to wrestle with, but those who are thousands of miles away do not know." Bulletin 1901, pp 69, 70. And on the very day of my second sermon, April 4, she said in a talk at 9:00 a.m., this meeting will determine the character of our work in the future. How important that every step shall be taken under the supervision of God! This work must be carried in a very different manner to what it has been in the past years-Bulletin 1901, p. 83.

In this understanding an entire new Constitution was adopted; and that such was the understanding in adopting this Constitution is plainly shown in the discussions. Under this Constitution the General Conference Committee was composed of a large number of men, with power to organize itself by choosing a chairman etc. No president of the General Conference was chosen; nor was provided for. The presidency of the General Conference was eliminated to escape a centralized power, a one-man power, a kingship, a monarchy. The Constitution was framed and adopted to that end in accordance with the whole guiding thought in the Conference from the beginning in that room in the College Building.

Shortly after the Conference ended, you suggested during the meeting at Indianapolis that my sermon on organization ought to be printed in a leaflet so that our people everywhere could have it for study in the work of reorganization. Your suggestion was agreed to and I was directed to prepare it for printing. I did so and it was printed at General Conference direction in Words of Truth Series No. 31, Extra May 1901.

Now after all this, it was not long before the whole spirit and principle of the General Conference Organization and affairs began to be reversed again. This spirit of reaction became so rife and so rank that some before the General Conference of 1903 at Oakland, Calif., two men, or three men, or four men, or a few men I should say, being together in Battle Creek or somewhere else, and without any kind of authority, but directly against the plain words of the Constitution, took it absolutely upon themselves to elect you president, and Brother Prescott vice-president of the General Conference. And than that there never was in this universe a clearer piece of usurpation of position, power and authority. You two were then of right, just as much president and vice-president of Timbuktu as you were of the Seventh-day Adventist General Conference.

But this spirit did not stop even there. The thing was done directly against the Constitution. This was too plain to be escaped. And it was just as plain that with that Constitution still perpetuated in the coming General Conference, this usurpation of position, power, and authority could not be perpetuated. What could be done to preserve the usurpationOh, that was just as easy as the other. A new Constitution was framed to fit and to uphold the usurpation. This Constitution was carried to the General Conference of 1903 at Oakland, Calif., and in every unconstitutional way, because in every truly constitutional government the constitution comes in some way from the people, not from the monarch. Thus the people make and establish a Constitution. The monarch grants a Constitution. When the people make a Constitution the people govern. When a monarch grants a Constitution he seeks to please the people with a toy and keeps the government himself. This difference is the sole difficulty in Russia to-day; and the difference is simply the difference between monarchy and government of the people; and between oppression and freedom. The people want to make a Constitution. The Czar wants to grant them a Constitution, and have them endorse anew his autocracy and bureaucracy by adopting the Constitution that he grants.

And this is just the difference between the General Conference and its Constitution of 1901 and the General Conference and its Constitution of 1903. In 1901 the monarchy was swept aside completely, and the Conference itself as such and as a whole made a new Constitution. In the General conference of 1903 the usurpers of monarchial position and authority came with the Constitution that fitted and maintained their usurpation, and succeeded in getting it adopted. And how?None of the people had asked for a new Constitution. The General Conference delegation asked for it. In behalf of the usurpation it was brought before that Committee and advocated there, because, in very words, "The Church must have a visible head." It was not even then nor was it ever, favored by that Committee. It was put through the Committee, and reported to the Conference, only by permanently dividing the Committee,a minority, of the Committee, opposing it all the time, and-a thing almost unheard of in Seventh-day Adventist Conferences, a minority report against it. And when at last it was adopted by the final vote, it was by a slim majority of just five. And it was only by the carelessness of some of the delegates that it got through even that way; for there were just then downstairs in the Oakland Church enough delegates who were opposed to it, to have defeated it if they had been present. They told this themselves afterwards. But they did not know that the vote was being taken, and by their not being in their places, the usurpation was sanctioned; the reactionary spirit that had been so long working for absolute control had got it; the principles and intent of the General Conference of 1901 was reversed; and a Czardom was enthroned which has since gone steadily onward in the same way and has with perfect consistency built up a thorough bureaucratic government, by which it reaches and meddles with, and manipulates, the affairs of all, not only of the union and local conferences, but of local churches, and of individual persons. So that some of the oldest men in active service to-day, and who by their life experiences are best qualified to know, have freely said that in the whole history of the denomination there has never been such a one-man power, such a centralized despotism, so much of the Papacy, as there has been since the Oakland Conference [of 1903]. And as a part of this bureaucracy there is, of all the incongruous things ever heard of, a Religious Liberty Bureau-a contradiction in terms.

Now when I was opposed to this thing before and in the General Conference of

1897, and before and in the General Conference of 1899, and before and in the General Conference of 1901, and before and in the General Conference of 1903, why should you be perplexed that I have not fallen in with it and helped to make it a success since 1903? Why should I in 1903, abandon all the principles and teachings by which I was right in opposing it, until and including 1903, when I was in the right all these years in opposing it and doing all that I could to keep it from succeeding, Why and upon what principles should I have swung in and favoured it just because at last in a most arbitrary, unconstitutional and usurping way it did at last succeed?

Again in the General Conference of 1901 you yourself said that in the principles of organization that I preached I had "light for the people." Those principles were the ones that prevailed in that Conference; and at your own suggestion these principles as preached in my first sermon, were published for the help of the denomination in the work of reorganization. But the principles and the form of organization of 1903 were directly the opposite of this that in 1901 you said were "light for the people." If my second sermon in the General Conference of 1901 had been printed along with the first, the people would have been able to see more plainly how entirely the course of things in 1903 was the reverse of that in 1901. And anyone can see it now by reading The General Conference Bulletin of 1901, pp. 37-42, and pp. 101105.

Now brother, were those principles light in 1901? If so, then what did you do when you exposed the opposite of them in 1902, 1903? Or were those principles light in 1901, and darkness in 1903? Or were those principles really darkness in 1901 when you said that they were light. Or are they still light today as they were in 1901? And if in the General Conference of 1901 you were not able to distinguish between light and darkness what surety has anybody that you were any more able to do it in 1902-1903? Or is it possible that in 1902-1903 you were not, and now are not, able to see that the principles and the course of action of 1902- 1903 are not the same as those of the General Conference of 1901? In other words, is it possible that you can think that certain principles with their course of action, and the reverse of them are one and the same? I know that the principles that in 1901 you said were "light for the people" were then really light, and that they are now light and forever more will be light. They are only plain principles of the Word of God. I hold these principles today exactly as I did in 1901 and long before, and shall hold them forever. For this cause I was opposed to the usurpation and unconstitutional action of 1902-1903 that were the opposite of these principles; and shall always be opposed to them.,

In view of all these facts again I ask, Why should you think that I should abandon all, just because you and some others did? I think that it was enough for me to keep still these three years. It is true that I have had no disposition to do anything but keep still about it. For when the General Conference of 1903 made their choice that way, I have no disposition to oppose it in any other way than by preaching the gospel. Indeed the strongest possible opposition that can be made to it is the plain, simple preaching of the plain gospel. There is this about it, however, that now the plain simple preaching of the plain gospel will be considered disloyal to the General Conference, disloyal to the organization, etc. Nevertheless, I am going to continue to preach the plain gospel, and that gospel is in the Word of God. For when the General Conference and the organized work put themselves in such a position that the plain preaching of the gospel as in the Word of God is disloyalty to the General Conference and the "organized work," then the thing to do is to preach the gospel, as it is in the Word of God....

In 1901 the General Conference was turned away from a centralized power; a one man or two men, or three men, or four men, or a few men power, a kingship, a monarchy; because the instructions was in very words, the principle is wrong. It will not do to say that in 1902-1903 circumstances had changed. For whatever change may ever occur in circumstances, principles never change.

I stated that the present order of the General Conference affairs is a thoroughly bureaucratic government. Not every section of it is called a bureau; but that is what in practice every section is, whatever it may be called; and the title of the Religious Liberty Bureau is expressive of the whole.

I stated that the phrase "Religious Liberty Bureau" is a contradiction in terms, on every principle that is the truth. There are many words of our language that are the result and expression of invariable human experience through ages.

The result of human experience through ages has in certain things been so invariable that a word tells it, and tells it so truly, when that word is used, that a certain order of things is described; and when that word is espoused, then we have in certainty the situation and order of things which the word expresses. Bureaucracy-Government by bureaus-is one of these words: and the definition, which is but the expression of ages of invariable experience is as follows:

"Bureaucracy: Government by bureaus: specifically, excessive multiplication of, and concentration of power in, administrative bureaus. The principle of bureaucracy tends to official interference in many of the properly private affairs of life, and to the inefficient and obtrusive performance of duty through minute subdivisions of functions, inflexible formality, and pride of place." Century Dictionary.

"A bureaucracy is sure to think that its duty is to augment official power, official business, or official numbers, rather than to leave free the energies of mankind."Standard Dictionary.


Cloak & Dagger 4

Appendix for Chapter 16

M. L. Andreasen on "The Atonement" Letters to the Churches, No. 6, 1959

The serious student of the atonement is likely to be perplexed when he consults the spirit of Prophecy to find two sets of apparently contradictory statements in regard to the atonement. He will find that when Christ "offered Himself on the cross, a perfect atonement was made for the sins of the people: (Signs of the Times, June 28, 1899. He will find that the Father bowed before the cross "in recognition of its perfection. `It is enough,' He said, `the atonement is complete' (Review and Herald, September 24, 1901.

But in The Great Controversy he will find this: "At the conclusion of the 2300 days, in 1844, Christ entered the Most Holy Place of the heavenly sanctuary, to perform the closing work of the atonement," page 422. In Patriarchs and Prophets, 357, I read that sins will "stand on record in the sanctuary until the final atonement" (in 1844). Page 358 states that in "the final atonement the sins of the truly penitent are to be blotted from the records of heaven." Early Writings, 253 says that "Jesus entered the Most Holy of the heavenly at the end of the 2300 days of Daniel 8, to make the final atonement."

The first set of statements says that the atonement was made on the cross; the other says that the final atonement was made 1800 years later. I have found seven statements that the atonement was made on the cross; I have twenty-two statements that the final atonement was made in heaven. Both of these figures are doubtless incomplete; for there may be others that have escaped my attention. It is evident, however that I may not accept one set of statements and reject the other if I wish to arrive at truth. The question therefore is, Which statements are true? Which are false? or, are both true? If so, how can they be harmonized?

I was perplexed when in the February issue of the Ministry in 1957, I found the statement that "the sacrificial act of the cross [was] a complete, perfect, and final atonement." This was in distinct contradiction to Mrs. White's pronouncement that the final atonement began in 1844. I thought that this might be a misprint, and wrote to Washington calling attention to the matter, but found it was not a misprint but an official and approved statement. If we still hold the Spirit of Prophecy as of authority we therefore have two contradictory beliefs: the final atonement was made at the cross; the final atonement began in 1844.

I have listened to several discussions of the meaning of the Hebrew word "kaphar" which is the word used in the original for atonement, but have received little help. The best definition I have found is a short explanatory phrase in Patriarchs and Prophets, 358, which simply states that the atonement, "the great work of Christ, or blotting out of sin, was represented by the services on the day of atonement."

This definition is in harmony with Leviticus 16:30 which says that "the priest shall make atonement for you, to cleanse you, that ye may be clean from all your sins before the Lord." Atonement is here equated with being "clean from all your sins." As sin was the cause of separation between God and man, the removing of sin would again unite God and man. And this would be at-one-ment.

Christ did not need any atonement, for He and the Father were always one (John 10:30). Christ prayed for His disciples "that they may all be one, as Thou, Father, art in Me and I in Thee, that they may be one in Us" (John 17:21).

The definition of atonement as consisting of three words atonement is by some considered obsolete, but it nevertheless represents vital truth. Mrs. White thus uses it. Says she: "unless they accept the atonement provided for them in the remedial sacrifice of Jesus Christ who is our atonement, at-one-ment with God" (Manuscript 122, 1901).

God's plan is that in "the fullness of time He might gather together in one all things in Christ (Ephesians 1:10). When this is done, "the family of heaven and the family of earth are one" (DA 835). Then "one pulse of harmony and gladness beats through the vast creation" (GC 678). At last the atonement is complete.

Two Phases of the Atonement

Much confusion in regard to the atonement arises from a neglect to recognize the two divisions of the atonement. Note what is said of John the Baptist, "He did not distinguish clearly the two phases of Christ's work-as a suffering sacrifice, and a conquering king" (DA 136-137). The book Questions on Doctrine makes the same mistake. It does not distinguish clearly; in fact, it does not distinguish at all; it does not seem to know of the two phases; hence the confusion.

The First Phase

The first phase of Christ's atonement was that of a suffering sacrifice. This began before the world was, included the Incarnation, Christ's life on earth, the temptation in the wilderness, Gethsemane, Golgotha, and ended when God's voice called Christ from the "stony prison house of death." The fifty-third chapter of Isaiah is a vivid picture of this.

Satan had overcome Adam in the garden of Eden, and in a short time nearly the whole world had come under his sway. At the time of Noah there were only eight souls who entered the ark. Satan claimed to be the prince of this world, and no one had challenged him.

But God did not recognize Satan's claim to dominion, and when Christ came to earth, the Father "gave the world into the hands of the Son, that through His mediatorial work He may completely vindicate the holiness and the binding claims of every precept of the divine law" (BEcho, January, 1887). This was a challenge to Satan's claim, and thus began in earnest the great controversy between Christ and Satan.

"Christ took the place of fallen Adam. With the sins of the world laid upon Him, He would go over the ground where Adam stumbled" (RH February 24, 1874). "Jesus volunteered to meet the highest claims of the law" (RH September 2, 1890). "Christ made Himself responsible for every man and woman on earth" (RH February 27, 1900).

As Satan claimed ownership of the earth, it was necessary for Christ to overcome Satan before He could take possession of His kingdom. Satan knew this, and hence made an attempt to kill Christ as soon as He was born. However, as a contest between Satan and a helpless child in a manger would not be fair, God frustrated this.

The first real encounter between Christ and Satan took place in the wilderness.

After forty days of fasting, Christ was weak and emaciated, at death's door. At this time Satan made his attack. But Christ resisted, even "unto blood" and Satan was compelled to retire defeated. But he did not give up. Throughout Christ's ministry, Satan dogged His footsteps, and made every moment a hard battle.

 

Gethsemane

The climax of Christ's struggle with Satan came in the garden of Gethsemane.

Hitherto Christ had been upheld by the knowledge of the approval of the Father. But now

He "was overpowered by the terrible fear that God was removing His presence from Him (3SOP 95). If God should forsake Him, could He still resist Satan and die rather than yield? Three times His humanity shrank from the last crowning sacrifice.... The fate of humanity trembled in the balance" (3 SOP 99). "As the Father's presence was withdrawn, they saw Him sorrowful with a bitterness of sorrow exceeding that of the last struggle with death" (DA 759). "He fell dying to the ground" but with His last ounce of strength murmured, "If this cup may not pass from me except I drink it, Thy will be done.... A heavenly peace rested upon His bloodstained face. He had borne that which no human being could ever bear; He had tasted the sufferings of death for every man" (DA 694). In His death, He was victor.

"When Christ said, `It is finished' God responded `It is finished, the human race shall have another trial.' The redemption price is paid, and Satan fell like lightning from heaven" (Ms 11, 1897).

"As the Father beheld the cross He was satisfied. He said, `It is enough, the offering is complete"' (ST September 30, 1899). It was necessary however, that there should be given the world a stern manifestation of the wrath of God, and so "in the grave Christ was the captive of divine justice" (ST November 15, 1899). It must be abundantly attested that Christ's death was real, so He must "remain in the grave the allotted period of time" (RH April 27, 1898). "When the time was expired a messenger was sent to relieve the Son of God from the debt for which He had become responsible, and for which He had made full atonement" (Ms 94, 1897).

"In the intercessory prayer of Jesus with His Father, He claimed that He had fulfilled the conditions which made it obligatory upon the Father to fulfill His part of the contract made in heaven with regard to fallen man. He prayed `I have finished the work which Thou gayest Me to do."' Mrs. White makes this explanation, "That is, He had wrought out a righteous character on earth as an example for men to follow" (3 SOP 260).

The "contract" between the Father and the Son made in heaven, included the following:

1.                The Son was to work out a righteous character on earth as an example for man to follow.

2.                Not only was Christ to work out such a character, but He was to demonstrate that man also could do this; and thus man would become "more precious than fine gold, even a man than the golden wedge of Ophir."

3.                If Christ thus could present man as a new creature in Christ Jesus, then God was to "receive repentant and obedient men, and would love them even as He loves His Son" (3 SOP 260; DA 790).

"Christ had fulfilled one phase of His priesthood by dying on the cross. He is now fulfilling another phase by pleading before the Father the case of repenting, believing sinners, presenting to God the offerings of His people" (Ms 42, 1901). "In His incarnation He had reached the prescribed limit as a sacrifice, but not as a redeemer" (Ms 11, 1897). On Golgotha He was the victim, the sacrifice. That was a far as He could go as a sacrifice. But now His work as a redeemer began. "When Christ cried `It is finished' God's unseen hand rent the strong fabric which composed the veil of the temple from top to bottom. The way into the holiest of all was made manifest" (ibid.).

With the cross the first phase of Christ's work as the "suffering sacrifice" ended. He had gone the "prescribed limit" as a sacrifice. He had finished His work "thus far."

And now, with the Father's approval of the sacrifice, He was empowered to be the Saviour of mankind. At the ensuing coronation forty days later He was given all power in heaven and earth, and officially installed as High Priest.

The Second Phase

"After His ascension our Saviour began His work as High Priest. . . . In harmony with the typical service He began His ministration in the holy place, and at the termination of the prophetic days in 1844 ... He entered the most holy to perform the last division of His solemn work, to cleanse the sanctuary" (4SOP 265-266). On the same page, 266, Sister White repeats, apparently for emphasis, "at the termination of the 2300 days in 1844, Christ then entered the most holy place of the heavenly sanctuary, into the presence of God, to perform the closing work of atonement preparatory to His coming."

The reader cannot fail to note how clearly and emphatically this is stated. John the Baptist "did not distinguish clearly the two phases of Christ's work, as a suffering sacrifice and a conquering king" (DA 136-137). Our theologians are making the same mistake today and are inexcusable. They have light which John did not have.

In studying this part of the atonement, we are entering a field that is distinctly Adventist, and in which we differ from all other denominations. This is our unique contribution to religion and theology, that which "has made us a separate people, and has given character and power to our work" (CE 54). In the same place she warns us not to make "void the truths of the atonement, and destroy our confidence in the doctrine which we have held sacred since the third angel's message was first given."

This is vital counsel, and written for this very time when efforts are being made by some among us to have others believe that we are like the churches about us, an evangelical body and not a sect. Paul, in his day, had the same heresy to meet. He was accused of being a "pestilent fellow," a "ringleader of the sect of the Nazarenes" (Acts 24:5). In his answer before Felix, Paul confessed that after the "way which they call a sect, so serve I the God of our Fathers believing all things which are according to the law and which are written in the prophets" (Acts 24:14 RV). In those days men spoke sneeringly of the true church as a sect, as men do now. Paul was not disturbed by this. We have no record that he attempted to have the church of the living God recognized as an evangelical body by men who trampled the law of God in the dust. On the contrary, whatever they might call him and his "sect" he confessed that he believed "all things which are written in the law and the prophets" (verse 14).

The religious journal, Christianity Today, states in the March 3, 1948 issue, that "the Adventists today are contending vigorously that they are truly evangelical. They appear to want to be so regarded." Mentioning the book Questions on Doctrine, it says that this "is the Adventist answer to the question whether it ought to be thought of as a sect or a fellow evangelical denomination." It states further that "the book" is published in an effort to convince the religious world that we are evangelical and one of them.

This is a most interesting and dangerous situation. As one official who was not in favor of what was being done stated to me: "We are being sold down the river." What a sight for heaven and earth! The church of the living God which has been given the commission to preach the gospel to every creature under heaven and call men to come out of Babylon, is now standing at the door of these churches asking permission to enter and become one of them. How are the mighty fallen! Had their plan succeeded, we might now be a member of some evangelical association and not a distinctive Seventhday Adventist Church any more, in secrecy "sold down the river." This is more than apostasy. This is giving up Adventism. It is the rape of a whole people. It is denying God's leading in the past. It is the fulfillment of what the Spirit of Prophecy said some years ago:

“The enemy of souls has sought to bring in the supposition that a great reformation was to take place among Seventh-day Adventists, and that this reformation would consist in giving up the doctrines which stand as the pillars of our faith, and engaging in a process of reorganization. Were this reformation to take place, what would result? The principles of truth that God in His wisdom has given to the remnant church, would be discarded. Our religion would be changed. The fundamental principles that have sustained the work for the last fifty years would be accounted as error. A new organization would be established. Books of a new order would be written.

“A system of intellectual philosophy would be introduced.... Nothing would be allowed to stand in the way of the new movement.” (2SpTB, 54-55).

“Be not deceived; many will depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits and doctrines of devils. We have before us the alpha of this danger. The omega will be of a more startling nature.” (ibid, 16).

“When men standing in the position of leaders and teachers work under the power of spiritualistic ideas and sophistries, shall we keep silent for fear of injuring their influence, while souls are being beguiled? ... Those who feel so very peaceable in regard to the works of the men who are spoiling the faith of the people of God, are guided by a delusive sentiment.” (ibid. 9, 11).

“Renewed energy is now needed. Vigilant action is called for. j Indifference and sloth will result in the loss of personal religion and of heaven. . . . My message to you is: No longer consent to listen without protest to the perversion of truth. We must firmly refuse to be drawn away from the platform of eternal truth, which since 1844 has stood the test.” (ibid., 1415,50).

“I hesitated and delayed about the sending out of that which the Spirit of the Lord impelled me to write. I did not want to be compelled to present the misleading influence of these sophistries. But in the providence of God, the errors that have been coming in must be met.” (ibid., 55).

“What influence is it that would lead men at this stage of our history to work in an underhanded, powerful way to tear down the foundation of our faith-the foundation that was laid at the beginning of the work by prayerful study of the word and by revelation? Upon this foundation we have been building the past fifty years. Do you wonder that when I see the beginning of a work that would remove some of the pillars of our faith, I have something to say? I must obey the command, "Meet it".” (ibid. 58).

All this was written to meet the apostasy in the alpha period. We are now in the omega period which Sister White said would come, and which would be of a "startling nature." And the words are even more applicable now than then. Is the reader one of "those who feel so very peaceable in regard to the works of the men who are spoiling the faith of the people of God?" "Shall we keep silent for fear of injuring their influence, while souls are being beguiled?" It is time to stand up and be counted. There are times when I have been tempted to think that I stood alone as did Elijah. But God told him that there were seven thousand others. There are more than that now, thank God. They need to reveal themselves-and they are doing it. Most heartening are the letters I am receiving. It is with deep regret that I find I am unable to enter into extended correspondence. I am overwhelmed with work.

Christ's death on the cross corresponds to the moment when on the day of atonement the high priest had just killed the Lord's goat in the court. The death of the goat was necessary, for without its blood there could be no atonement. But death in and of itself was not the atonement, though it was the first and necessary step. Sister White speaks of the "atonement commenced on earth" (3 SOP 261). Says Scripture: "It is the blood that maketh atonement" (Leviticus 17:11). And, of course, there could be no blood until after the death had taken place. Without a blood ministration the people would be in the same position as those who on the Passover slew the lamb but failed to place the blood on the door posts. "When I see the blood" said God, "I will pass over you" (Exodus 12:13). The death was useless without the ministration of the blood. It was the blood that counted.

It is the blood that is to be applied, not "an act," "a great act," "sacrificial act," "atoning act, "the act of the cross," "the benefits of the act of the cross," "the benefits of the atonement," all of which expressions are used in Questions on Doctrine; but any reference to the blood is carefully avoided. It is not an act of any kind that is to be applied. It is the blood. Yet in all the 100 pages in the book dealing with the atonement, not once is the blood spoken of as being applied, or ministered. Can this be merely an oversight, or is it intended? Are we teaching a bloodless atonement? Elder Nichol states the Adventist position correctly when he says, "We believe that Christ's work of atonement was begun rather than completed on Calvary" (Answers to Objections, p. 408). This was published in 1952. We shall be interested to see what the new edition will say. Many are waiting to find out what they are to believe on this important question.

Blood Atonement

Here are some expressions from the Spirit of Prophecy in regard to blood atonement:

“Jesus was clothed with priestly garments. He gazed in pity on the remnant, and with a loud voice of deep pity cried, "My blood Father; My blood; My blood; My blood" (EW 38).

“He appears in the presence of God as our great High Priest, ready to accept the repentance and to answer the prayers of His people, and, through the merits of His own righteousness, present them to the Father. He raises His wounded hands to God, and claims their blood bought pardon. I have graven them on the palms of My hands, He pleads. Those memorial wounds of My humiliation and anguish secure to My church the best gifts of omnipotence.” (3 SOP 261-262).

“The ark that enshrines the tables of the law is covered with the mercy seat, before which Christ pleads His blood in the sinner's behalf.” (GC 415).

“When in the typical service the high priest left the holy place on the day of atonement, He went in before God to present the blood of the sin-offering, in behalf of all Israel who truly repented of their sins. So Christ had only completed one part of His work as our intercessor, to enter upon another portion of the work, and He still pleaded His blood before the Father in behalf of sinners.” (GC 429).

“Christ is "now officiating before the ark of God, pleading His blood in behalf of sinners"” (GC 433).

“Christ, the great high priest, pleading His blood before the Father in the sinner's behalf, bears upon His heart the name of every repentant believing soul.” (PP 351).

“As Christ at His ascension appears in the presence of God to plead His blood in behalf of penitent believers, so the priest in the daily ministration sprinkled the blood of the sacrifice in the holy place in the sinner's behalf.” (PP 357).

“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 was to stand on record in the sanctuary until the final atonement.” (PP 357).

And with all these statements before him, not once does the author of Questions on Doctrine mention the blood as being applied or ministered.

The Final Atonement

"The Father ratified the covenant made with Christ, that He would receive repentant and obedient men, and would love them even as He loves His Son." This as stated above, was on the condition that "Christ was to complete His work and fulfill His pledge to make a man more precious than fine gold, even a man than the golden wedge of Ophir" (DA 790). "This Christ guarantees" (3 SOP 250).

When Christ says in His high priestly prayer, "I have finished the work which Thou gavest me to do," (John 17:4) Sister White comments, "He had wrought out a righteous character on earth as an example for man to follow" (3 SOP 260).

In working out this righteous character, Christ demonstrated that it could be done. But could others do the same? That needed to be demonstrated also. Christ had guaranteed it could. It was now for Christ to make good His pledge.

Character is not created. It is made; it is developed; it is built through manifold tests and temptations and trials. God at first gives a little light, then a little stronger, and still a little stronger. Little by little resistance to temptations grows stronger, and after a while, certain temptations cease to be temptations. A man may have a great struggle with tobacco; but at last he is victorious, and his victory may be so complete that tobacco is a temptation no longer.

Thus, ideally, it should be with every temptation. Holiness is not attained in a day. "Redemption is that process by which the soul is trained for heaven" (DA 330). A man may gain victories every day, but still may not have attained. Even Paul had to admit that he had not "already attained, either were already perfect." But undaunted he exclaims, "I follow after that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Jesus Christ" (Philippians 3:12).

Christ had pledged to make man finer than gold, "even the golden wedge of ophir." In this work man must not be a submissive instrument only; he must take an active part. Note these quotations:

"The ransom of the human race was appointed to give man another trial" (Ms 14, 1898). "The plan of salvation was designed to redeem the fallen race, to give man another trial" (ST April 26, 1899). God "looked upon the victim expiring on the cross and said, `It is finished; the human race shall have another trial"' (YI June 21, 1900). "That the transgressor might have another trial ... the eternal Son of God interposed Himself to bear the punishment of transgression" (RH February 8, 1898). "He suffered in our stead that men could have another test and trial" (Special Instructions Relating to the Review and Herald Office, p. 28). "As Jesus was accepted as our substitute and surety, every one of us will be accepted if we stand the test and trial for ourselves" (RH June 10, 1890). "The Saviour overcame to show man how he may overcome." "Man must work with his human power aided by the divine power of Christ, to resist and to conquer at any cost to himself. In short, he must overcome as Christ overcame.... Man must do his part; he must be victor on his own account, through the strength and grace that Christ gives him" (4T 32, 33).

Christ had pledged to make men overcomers; He had "guaranteed" this. It was no easy task; but the work of atonement was not finished until and unless He did it. And so Christ persevered till His task should be done. Out of the last generation, out of the weakest of the weak, Christ selects a group with which to make the demonstration that man can overcome as Christ overcame. In the 144,000 Christ will stand justified and glorified. They prove that it is possible for man to live a life pleasing to God under all conditions, and that men can at last stand "in the sight of a holy God without an intercessor" (GC 614). The testimony is given them, "they have stood without an intercessor through the final outpouring of God's judgments" (GC 649).

"They are the chosen ones, joint heirs with Christ in the great firm of heaven.

They overcame, as He overcame" (Ms. November 28, 1897). To us comes the invitation "Now, while our High Priest is making atonement for us, we should seek to become perfect in Christ" (GC 623).

A Mystery

In his epistle to the Ephesians, Paul presents us with a mystery. Says he, "For this cause shall a man leave his father and his mother and shall be joined unto his wife, and the two shall be one flesh. This is a great mystery; but I speak concerning Christ and the church" (Ephesians 5:32-32). Marriage fitly represents the union between Christ and the church, effected by the atonement. In harmony with this picture of a marriage, the public announcement is made at the close of probation, "The marriage of the Lamb is come, and His wife has made herself ready.... And to her it was granted that she should be arrayed in linen, clean and white; for the linen is the righteousness of the saints" (Revelation 19:8). As husband and wife are one, so now are Christ and the church. The at-one-ment, the true atonement, the final atonement, the complete atonement has been made. "The family of heaven and the family of earth are one" (DA 835).

The 144,000

Practically all Adventists have read the last few chapters in The Great Controversy, which describes the fearful struggle through which God's people will pass before the end. As Christ was tried to the utmost in the temptation in the wilderness and in the garden of Gethsemane, so the 144,000 will likewise be tried. They will apparently be left to perish, as their prayers remain unanswered as were Christ's in Gethsemane when His petitions were denied. But their faith will not fail. With Job they will exclaim, "Though He slay me, yet will I trust Him" (Job 13:15).

The final demonstration of what God can do in humanity is made in the last generation, who bear all the infirmities and weaknesses which the race has acquired through six thousand years of sin and transgression. In the words of Sister White they bore "the results of the working of the great law of heredity" (DA 49). The weakest of mankind are to be subjected to the strongest of Satan's temptations, that the power of God might be abundantly shown. "It was an hour of fearful terrible agony to the saints. Day and night they cried unto God for deliverance. To outward appearance, there was no possibility of their escape" (EW 283).

According to the new theology which our leaders have accepted and are now teaching, the 144,000 will be subjected to a temptation immeasurably stronger than any Christ ever experienced. For while the last generation will bear the weaknesses and passions of their forefathers, they claim that Christ was exempt from all these. Christ, we are told, did not inherit any of the passions "that corrupt the natural descendants of Adam" (Questions on Doctrine, p. 383). He was therefore functioning on a higher level from men who have to battle with inherited passions and hence He does not know and has not experienced the real power of sin. But this is not the kind of Saviour I need. I need One who has been "tempted in all points like as we are" (Hebrews 4:15). The "substitute Christ" which our leaders present to us, I must reject and do reject. Thank God, "we have not a high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities, but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin" (ibid.).

Indictment Against God

But more than even this is involved in the new theology; it places an indictment against God as the author of a scheme to deceive both men and Satan. Here is the situation:

Satan has consistently maintained that God is unjust in requiring men to obey His law, which he claims is impossible. God has maintained that it can be done, and to substantiate His claim, offered to send His Son to this world to prove His contention. The Son did come and kept the law and challenged men to convince Him of sin. He was found to be sinless, holy and without blame. He proved that the law could be kept, and God stood vindicated; and His requirement that men keep His commandments was found to be just. God had won, and Satan was defeated.

But there was a hitch in this; for Satan claimed that God had not played fair; He had favoured His Son, had "exempted" Him from the results of the working of the great law of heredity to which all other men were subject; He had exempted Christ "from the inherited passions and pollutions that corrupt the natural descendants of Adam" (Questions on Doctrine, p. 383). He had not exempted mankind in general, but Christ only. That of course, invalidated Christ's work on earth. He was no longer one of us who had demonstrated the power of God to keep men from sinning. He was a deceiver whom God had given preferred treatment and was not afflicted with inherited passions as men are.

Satan had little difficulty in having men accept this view; in due time, the evangelicals gave their consent; and in 1956 the leaders of the Adventist church also adopted this view. It was the matter of "exemption" that caused Peter to take Christ aside and say, "Be it far from thee, Lord; this shall not be unto thee," which so raised the wrath of Christ that He told Peter, "Get thee behind me, Satan" (Matthew 16:22-23). Christ did not want to be exempt. He told Peter, "Thou savourest not the things that be of God." So some today savour not the things of God. They think it merely a matter of semantics. God pity such and open their eyes to the things that be of God. With the surrender of the Adventist leaders to the monstrous doctrine of an "exempt" Christ, Satan's last opposition has surrendered. We pray again, May God save His people.

I have been asked what I expect to accomplish. I am not out to "win" any argument. I am a Seventh-day Adventist minister whose work is to preach the truth and combat error. The Bible is mostly a record of the protest of God's witnesses against the prevailing sins of the church, and also of their apparent failure. Practically all protesters sealed their testimony with their blood, and the church went on until God intervened. All Paul hoped was that he might "save some" (1 Corinthians 9:22). Practically all the apostles died martyrs, and Christ they hanged on a tree. It took forty years before the destruction came. But when God intervened He did thorough work.

This denomination needs to go back to the instruction given in 1888, which was scorned. We need a reform in organization that will not permit a few men to direct every move made anywhere in the world. We need a reform that will not permit a few men to handle finances as is now being done. We need a reform that will not permit men to spend millions on institutions not authorized by the vote of the constituency, while mission fields are suffering for want of the barest necessities. We need a change in the emphasis that is given to promotion, finances and statistics. We need to restore the Sabbath School to its rightful place in the work of God. We need to put a stop to the entertainments and suppers that are creeping in under the guise of raising money for good purposes. We need to put a stop to the weekly announcements in church that are merely disguised advertisements. This list could be greatly enlarged.

But all these, while important, are after all only minor things. We need a reformation and revival most of all. If our leaders will not lead in this, "then shall there enlargement and deliverance arise to the Jews from another place" (Esther 4:14). I am of good cheer, praying for the peace of Israel.

 Appendix for Chapter 17

The Biblical Research Institute (Australasia) Article in The Anchor Magazine, February 1986

In February 1976, when Dr. Ford's theology was investigated by the B.R.I., he himself was a member of the Institute. Normal ethics were dispensed with for his membership was not suspended while his doctrinal positions were investigated. Such conduct lends credence to the feelings of some of the "Concerned Brethren" who felt it was, in fact, their positions which had come under question. The points of issue were as follows:

1. The Nature of Salvation and Righteousness by Faith

Dr. Ford claimed that obedience to the Decalogue under the power of the Holy Spirit is not possible prior to glorification. He further claimed that sanctification is not part of the Gospel message. This easily demonstrable false stand was opposed in papers presented by Pastor Frank Basham and Dr. John Clifford.

2. The Sanctuary Message

Dr. Ford claimed that the Atonement was completed at the cross and that Jesus entered the Most Holy place in A.D. 31, rather than in 1844. These were the main issues upon which Dr. Ford was later dismissed following the investigations of the Glacier View meetings. Pastor Burnside most perceptively demonstrated the non-scriptural basis of Dr. Ford's position.

3. The Age of the Earth

Dr. Ford taught that creation week occurred thousands of years earlier than the approximately six thousand years testified to in Scripture and the Spirit of Prophecy. Dr. Russell Standish presented the Bible and the Spirit of Prophecy truth on this matter.

4. The Infallibility of the Bible

Dr. Ford taught that there were many errors of fact concerning science, history, genealogies etc. in Scripture, while stating it is free of error in setting forth the path to salvation. Pastor Frank Breaden had little difficulty in overthrowing Dr. Ford's error on this point. Eventually, only three matters were considered by the Bible Research Institute-viz. the Sanctuary message, the Age of the Earth and the Infallibility of Scripture.

THE VERDICT

Dr. Ford was exonerated of heresy solely on the grounds that "reference to majority positions taken by current S.D.A. authors and scholars" upheld his positions.

Sometime later, when it was pointed out that this must surely be the first time in which doctrines were accepted on the basis of what some authors and scholars believed, an amendment to the original finding was hurriedly made. It added the Bible and the Spirit of Prophecy to the authority of the scholars.

Such equivocation only served to exacerbate the dilemma of the B.R.I., for it would be difficult to imagine anything more futile than to attempt to use the Bible and the Spirit of Prophecy to prove the earth is considerably older than six thousand years.

Surely, we are talking about the greatest retraction of truth ever undertaken by any leadership in any Division! These people then returned to their positions of trust in leadership of the Division and in the theology department of Avondale College.

It would indeed be reassuring if the leadership of the South Pacific Division on the occasion of this tenth anniversary were to:

1.                Have the B.R.I. publicly reverse its findings in the Record or the Review, stating concisely and precisely where and why Dr. Ford was wrong in each issue listed above.

2.                Reaffirm the message of the third angel of Revelation 14 as the message entrusted to the remnant church and identify the "beast" as the Papacy and "his image" as apostate Protestantism.

Should the leadership deem the foregoing account of the B.R.I. proceedings to be inaccurate and our suggestions unreasonable, let them now justify such a position by releasing copies of the unexpurgated tapes of the meetings to the brethren concerned, as initially promised.

Failure to do so will leave our Church in an official state of apostasy, and the leadership will continue to be seen to condone and encourage heresy.

Author's Note:

At the time this book was written, no official response to this appeal has been forthcoming. For the record, the names of the participants in the 1976 B.R.I. meetings are listed below:

ADMINISTRATION:

Pastor C. Adams, Conference president Pastor D. Bain, Division health director

Pastor C. Barritt, Conference president Pastor C. Christian, Conference president

Doctor D. Ford, chairman, Avondale theology department Pastor R. Frame,

Division president Pastor A. Jorgensen, B.R.I. and field secretary Pastor C. Judd, T.T.U

Conference president Doctor E. Magnusson, principal, Avondale College Pastor R. Moe,

Conference president Pastor L. Naden, retired Division president Pastor K. Parmenter,

Division secretary

Pastor R. Parr, editor, Signs of the Times

Doctor A. Patrick, theology lecturer, Avondale College Doctor A. Salom, church pastor, Wahroonga Pastor R. Stanley, Division ministerial secretary Pastor A. Tolhurst, Conference president

Pastor L. Tolhurst, theology lecturer, Avondale College Pastor S. Uttley, T.A.U. Conference president Doctor N. Young, theology lecturer, Avondale College

CONCERNED MEMBERS:

Pastor O. K. Anderson, retired evangelist Pastor F. Basham, retired church pastor Pastor F. Breaden, retired church pastor Pastor G. Burnside, retired evangelist

Doctor G. Clifford, layman

Pastor R. Heggie, retired Mission president Pastor A. Jacobsen, retired Mission president Pastor L. Jones, retired evangelist

Pastor J. Keith, retired Union and Mission president Pastor J. Kent, retired evangelist Pastor A. Knight, retired Bible teacher Brother R. Marks, layman Pastor E. Martin, retired missionary Brother H. Reed, layman Doctor R. Standish, layman Brother F. Williams, layman (As one who believes that we are all accountable to our Maker in the great day of God's judgment, the writer feels it his duty to make the following facts known regarding the late Pastor S. M. Uttley who at the time of the B.R.I. meetings was president of the Trans-Tasman Union Conference. He therefore, was among the administrators who took part in the B.R.I. meetings of February, 1976.)

Prior to publication of the above account of the B.R.I. meetings in the Anchor, the author, who was editor of the Anchor magazine submitted the script to Pastor S. Uttley for comment. Pastor Uttley claimed that his recollections of the meeting were hazy, but he was adamant that Desmond Ford had "pulled the wool over their [the administration's] eyes." He could see nothing in the article which he felt needing correcting.

At this time, he claimed that he was quite aware that many of Dr. Ford's beliefs were still being taught at Avondale College, naming in particular one theology lecturer who was at the B.R.I. meetings.

Pastor Raymond Stanley's APPEAL TO THE B.R.I. EYEWITNESS ACCOUNT,

Printed in The Anchor, July 1986

It is a matter of easily verifiable historical record that on February 3 and 4 of 1976, the members of the Australasian B.R.I. (Biblical Research Institute) met with a group of ministers and laymen at Avondale and Wahroonga to hear allegations of doctrinal deviations against Desmond Ford and his answer to the allegations.

The February 3 meeting was held at Avondale College and the February 4 meeting was held at the Division office, Wahroonga. Pastor Robert Frame was chairman and a co