After Thorough Process, Updated Pastoral Ethics Document Voted

The International Board of Ministerial and Theological Education (IBMTE) voted on April 4 to accept adjustments made to a Ministerial Association document on Pastoral Ethics in its session at the Seventh-day Adventist Church headquarters in Silver Spring, Maryland, United States. The voted action capped a thorough vetting process that involved extensive discussions and consultations across several church departments and regions for a couple of years.

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at

this reminds me of a General SS lesson at LLU, A Woman was giving the general lesson study. the topic was raising children… She kept saying she was in favor of capital punishment of children if correctly applied.


A code of ethics cannot be a a re-worked policy manual. Practical elements in pastoral decision making and accountability must be included. .This move to develop a code of ethics and conduct may very well be a response to a heartfelt concern to present a list of “uniform”, “standardized”, and “appropriate” “corporate” values in a diverse and growing Adventist culture. Even when the movement towards the introduction of codes could be motivated by the best and most noble of reasons and yet fail because the basic requirement is lacking. The basic requirement for a Code of Ethics for Pastors has to express the fundamental principles that provide guidance in cases where no specific rule is in place or where matters are genuinely unclear.


Updating ethics issues can address legal, marketing & media issues.
Updating homiletic issues would address back door & tithe issues.

Until more SDA get out of the institutional box to see how poor the sermons are, they will lack the perspective & sensitivity on how much improvement is really required.


I notice 3 likes attached to your post. It would be interesting to find out if they are institutional , in the box fans.
What is unending are the stereotypical Laodicean labels attached to SDA members and the often reminders for the need of revival & reformation.

My response…

"It has often been presented to me that there should be less sermonizing by ministers, acting merely as local pastors of churches, and that greater personal efforts should be put forth. Our people should not be made to think that they need to listen to a sermon every Sabbath. Many who listen frequently to sermons, even though the truth be presented in clear lines, learn but little. Often it would be more profitable if the Sabbath meetings were of the nature of a Bible-class study. Bible truth should be presented in such a simple, interesting manner that all can easily understand and grasp the principles of salvation.

We should seek to follow more closely the example of Christ, the great Shepherd, as He worked with His little company of disciples, studying with them and with the people the Old Testament Scriptures. His active ministry consisted not merely in sermonizing, but in educating the people." LT 192 1906… (Notice the date–EGW has heard plenty of sermons by then)

If you realize that my hobby horse/rant regarding homiletics is unending, then possibly you might have read what my input has been on advice: competent, contemporary relevant verse by verse expository teaching.
The OT clue is NEH 8:8. The NT clue is 2 Tim 4:2. Many pastors claim to do this but their messages are basically “bible based” theological therapy, nurture, topical sermons. Because so many members are of the world, pastors feel the need to muddy the water with entertaining stories or anecdotes.

I will admit to having heard 6 SDA pastors who have presented competent expository sermons. The great majority of pastors still present non fat dry milk typical topical sermons loaded with obscure/ambiguous clichés & platitudes.

I again challenge pastors and/or ministerial secretaries to implement sermon reviews by the audiences.

The absence of members at Sabbath school is another indication of poor teaching approaches.

1 Like

This is still your unending theme, answer to every issue, and continuing response. Who are you holding up as models?


I suppose that the church is trying trying to fix problems BUT really it is a huge and complex issue. I doubt mere mortals can have much effect. To the point.
Question…why are women’s ministry leaders in the SPD BEING REPLACED BY MEN? Why are the abuse issues in the island missions never mentioned.
. Just two of many ice-berg tips for those looking for them! (Dose 'it’s cultural’make it ok?) l


My grandmother (she died in 1994) remembers the same speaker. She would go off into fits of giggles recalling, “Use capital punishment only as a last resort.”