A Letter to My Church: Get Back on Track

The issue in 2015 was allowing an issue, for which there is no clear biblical imperative, to become a uniform imposition, rather than what was asked for…a point of needed cultural and missiological allowance. That Ted didn’t listen to the TOSC and suppressed their findings, which were consistent with the findings of every scholarly committee of the past forty years, shows that he played politics to push his bias, had no respect for those who know more than he does, and allowed his personal bias to guide his leadership, rather than pushing for a biblically diverse unity, as would have been appropriate.

He, by hitching his wagon to the majority in order to impose denominational wide uniformity on the minority, helped to deepen the divide within the denomination. He could have used his influence to help foster a vision of united diversity, consistent with the entire ethos of the NT, (Acts 15, Paul’s major letters, etc.). Instead, he fueled a divisive uniformity…over a debatable matter.

Failed leadership. Period! Doesn’t matter how his followers lionize him.

Frank

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I know of teams of bible scholars ( Adventist teams & teams from other denominations) that have consistently came to the conclusion that ordination can not be supported from the bible. I still dont understand how TW comes to be hated for a decision taken by the majority. was he expected to be a dictator, nullify majority vote and please the minority? is he hated because he does not dance to the tune of the few scholars who think their conclusions should be esteemed above others? this hatred of TW that is displayed here is so unwarranted! if you really care so much about the church, go and pray for him that the Holy Spirit might trulu guide him as he leads the church instead of trying to foul-mouth him here in a public platform

That’s not what the Adventist scholars have concluded. They have concluded that it simply cannot be proven or disproven from the scriptures. They have concluded this consistently. For forty years.

Ted Wilson was behind the formation of the TOSC. Another study team to re study what has already been studied exhaustively. They did. They came to results that didn’t support his agenda anti WO. He suppressed the results of the study being brought to the floor when it would have mattered. And you see nothing wrong with that??? You think that’s fair, impartial leadership??

He managed to take something that is more culturally driven than anything else, and succeeded in driving the wedge between the developing and developed world portions of the denomination even more. All that was being asked was for there to be the allowance of WO in areas of the world where it will work culturally and missiologically. Where anti WO policies and practice would hinder the church and its work. Not to impose it on any other area that is not in agreement. What happened was the reverse. A uniform imposition, with the supporters of WO being told to “deal with it.”

The Holy Spirit’s guidance has been asked for continually. For years. The fact that you, and elder Wilson, and the many, see nothing wrong with the way the process was manipulated, scholarly biblical studies have been ignored, and an enforced uniformity has been substituted for true diverse unity over an issue that is culturally driven, simply shows that the Spirit is not being listened to.

In this case, it’s truly the majority’s problem, led by the president you lionize. This is not foul mouthing. This is calling out the problem for what it is, and his role in it.

Frank

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The apostles did not vote on the twelfth apostle, it was a random selection from two candidates. Draw is giving the Holy Spirit a choice. And where the apostolic unanimity is 100%.

Why don’t we draw lots, then, then electing church officials. Seems we should follow the biblical example.

Or maybe roll the dice or flip a coin?

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This is from http://www.katinkahesselink.net/other/alan-watts-bible.html:

When a missionary boasted to George Bernard Shaw of the numerous converts he had made, Shaw asked, " Can these people use rifles?” "Oh, indeed, yes,” said the missionary. "Some of them are very good shots.” Whereupon Shaw scolded him for putting us all in peril in the day when those converts waged holy war against us for not following the Bible in the literal sense they gave to it.

I’m not saying that SDA-ism’s semi-honest evangelical practices and unapologetic use of EGW have put them in a similar pickle.

But then again, it does seem that certain parallels could be drawn….

:flushed::wink::rofl:

“Better” doesn’t and can’t exist in a vacuum of arbitrarily parameterized “justice” that one defines against equal distribution of something. We generally contextualize “better” by some comparative metrics that we can point to as a desirable outcome beyond certain equality of distribution. And it generally doesn’t transcend context either. “Better” in one context, doesn’t mean “better” in another.

I don’t equally divide food between my 5 and 10 year old. I give them what they need. I don’t buy the equally-priced clothes, books, and toys. That’s not how human development and human satisfaction works.

The idea that the GOAL is some equal representation because that becomes some contextual grounding for justice is unfounded in any philosophy or logic when you attempt to justify as anything other than it being an axiom no one is to question.

Equality is a predominantly quantitative concept to begin with. It’s NOT a qualitative concept. That’s why modern approach to pointing out problems have statistical arguments to point to that have nothing to do with functional scope of church or societal preferences and needs other than fulfill some quota that isn’t demonstrated to be fixing anything other than fulfilment of that quota.

Men and women are not equal. They were not made equal. They will never be equal. And they shouldn’t be equal. And the same goes with men and men, and women and women. That goes for any society that organizes itself against competitive hierarchies that carry the highest ideals at the top that all people aspire to.

You may say… well, you misunderstand, because my type of equality is limited to a scope of access to some baseline context that all should have some conceptual guarantees to. That’s fine when we are talking about a context in which competitive structures create resentment and strife in broader societal scope of strong exploiting the weak as they dominate in some competitive scope… BUT that’s never been the context for the church, in which the hierarchy of greatness and desirability are inverted. Strong are there to support the weak, and not to fight for an office with a paycheck. Pastoral position shouldn’t be one of competitive power and popular decision for a political office that gets to be the decisive vote for other.

That’s why this infighting makes zero sense. It takes a scope of arguably corrupt structure that doesn’t resemble Biblical model, and it attempts to make it “better” and “more just” by equal access to that corruption. How does it make it better?

With that said, it doesn’t mean that women shouldn’t be ordained or occupy leadership positions. But the idea that it resolves some contextual justice that’s THE PROBLEM that dying Orthodoxy of Adventism faces in a world that shifts away from past religious metaphors to describe relationships in reality … is both absurd and irritating.

We will agree to disagree. Sorry. We CAN do better, and we must, to fulfill the Gospel Commission.

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You haven’t really put forward any philosophical justification for your version of “better” other than assuming that it’s better.

In your previous reply you spent a page describing the scope of statistical disparity and political preferences. But I have yet to see an attempt to scope these to anything other than progressive ideals that become rather circular in their oversimplified justification.

I think there’s a value in specialized distribution of strength, in which variety allows us test and find the strongest individuals to lead us… but the idea that equality is literally a statistical measure of distribution of gender roles… is beyond absurd. It’s destructive and disruptive to why genders and sexual specialization exists in the first place.

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Wow! That reads like the most misogynistic statement I’ve ever seen written here at Spectrum. Unless I misunderstand what you mean. Please elaborate.

What of the creation story, where it is said that God made humans, both male and female, in the image of god? Like gods:

So God created humankind in his own image,
in his own image he created them;
male and female he created them.

I do see from some of your other comments, such as regarding children, that you seem to be using the term “equal” to mean “identical”. As in, your children as not equal because one is bigger needs more food than the other. But they aren’t the same concepts to me. The bigger child is not more important - just different.

In the USA, for example, all citizens are technically treated “equally” under the law. In other words, there is no caste system where the rulers officially get special treatment because they are special. (How that actually plays out in reality is an issue as the rich and powerful always have an advantage, but at least that advantage is not enshrined in the law.)

People certainly are different. Every individual - even identical twins - is different. But that does not mean that any person, for reasons of sex/gender or any other trait which they have no control over, is or should be treated as inferior or superior to another.

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First, why would you assume that it’s misogynistic? It’s like saying that basketball players being better at basketball is unfair to soccer players. It’s not. Soccer players aren’t qualitatively or quantitatively equal to basketball ones, and comparing them statistically is unfair.

The most mysoginistic thing you can do is to expect from women to compete with men in the realms and functions dominated by men.

For example, how about merging NBA and WNBA , or chess leagues? Why would you expect anything less in a political scope? It’s extremely unfair to women to do that.

The current preset for which feminist fight for is for the best of male positions, and not for the worst of them. Men as a whole have a far more stressful position in a society with far more expectations and ideals that were always turned towards protecting homestead managed by women.

Men die younger. Men have more suicides. Men work longer hours and more difficult jobs. Over 90% of work-related deaths are male. Men suffering from psychological and spousal abuse and infidelity are blamed and are taken less seriously.

So men have to be more psychologically and physiologically stronger for the role they play in maintenance of society in general. It doesn’t make it “a better place” for men to be. There are challenges unique to men and women that these conversations tend to ignore.

That doesn’t scope to any concept of equality. Men and women are a complex “super-organism” much like your body is composed of organs. Image of god is in functional and symbiotic and complementary unity and not in some vacuous statistical equality.

Equal and equivalent does communicate sameness of some scope of quantatative measure by which you referring to things as equal, otherwise it wouldn’t make sense to invoke equality.

Men and women, and people in general, are equal in our limited scope of ideal consideration that we give to all humans on a basis of consensus that this access benefits us all.

But that semantics of “equal” has been shifting and exploited on the basis of abstract that’s now being made intentionally vague to the point where many feminist extremists actually believe that women can compete and able to do everything men can, and trans extremists insist that sex and gender is an unnecessary and fluid distinction.

That’s obviously not the case.

You are talking about abstract and consensual hyperbole that uses the concept of equality as a metaphor for such idealized consideration.

I am talking about reality that’s being challenged right now, especially when it comes to efforts to eradicate gender and sexual distinction all together.

Inferior or superior has nothing to do with quantitative equality of traits that are superior or inferior only contextually.

And that’s what grown adults recognize that children aren’t able to do when they cry about their inability or differences as something of impediment.

For example, kids made fun of me being tall, but in context of basketball… people praised me for that. So, am I inferior or superior? It’s terrible to be a tall man in tight spaces, but great when you need to reach for something.

We need to ditch the idea that statistical representation as THE metric for justice and harmony in society. That’s not how reality works. And you can’t pretend that reality in its actual form can be remedied by our idealized imagination of it.

You have to be able to praise contextual strengths of other people that carry the load of societal maintenance in their own scope of contextual strengths. What being done with this “fight for equality” in politics is merely the good old divide and rule by inciting jealousy and by exaggerating the nature of the problem and diminishing the value of existing order.

I understand an argument for egalitarian political unity in a scope of functional symbiosis in a church, but we model Catholic hierarchy as a structure, which is anything BUT an expression of egalitarian construct in which leadership was decided by casting lots (lottery) and not by casting votes.

Well, it is true that I may have misused the term. Your statement did not show hatred for women, which is its technical definition.

Well, actually that’s also a misuse of the term.

A case can be made for gender-specific sports based on the average size and strength of the genders, where that matters. Still, at least one star MBA player in recent years was a little guy.

At the same time, gender discrimination against women in sports is rampant. The women’s US Soccer team, which is much more popular than the men’s and which also actually wins, was until recently paid far less than the men. They finally fixed that by suing the league.

I’ve not seen any evidence of an effort to do this. I’d think if it was happening I’d know about it, living in the SF Bay Area of California.

In any case, if it does exist, why do you fear it or wish to undo it? What are you defending?

Though I don’t think I agree with them, and some I don’t yet even understand fully, I don’t have the time to respond to the rest of your comments, as I have to leave on a trip.

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Perhaps, but not in the way it’s used today as in “holding ideologies that are potentially harmful to women”.

The smallest and the lowest-ranked NBA player would be a superstar in WNBA.

I don’t know much about national team soccer financing to make an argument. I can say that the female pro sports in the US are generally financed by male leagues that delegate a certain percentage to make these work.

WNBA is largely financed hy the proceeds from the NBA.

You may have been living under a rock, although it’s not difficult to do with the way pandemic unfolded. :wink:

I’m largely defending biological context for humanity which we are currently being lead out of for some really strange reason. Soon enough all of these arguments about who gets to lead Adventism will make zero sense, because sex apparently isn’t even a static concept. :rofl:

Hope you have a safe one. Take care.

Has the vote for or against women’s ordination ever been made by all the church members?

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