An Open Letter From Dan Jackson to Female Pastors in the North American Division

This statement from North American Division President Daniel R. Jackson was released on Wednesday, October 12, through the North American Division NewsPoints Bulletin.


This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at https://spectrummagazine.org/article/2016/10/12/open-letter-dan-jackson-female-pastors-north-american-division
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Women doing the work of Pastoral Ministry? Absolutely!
Women “ordained” for Pastoral Ministry?..

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Hopefully as ALL the Leadership in the Unions and Local Conferences read this that it Truly means that Pres. Dan Jackson is PROMOTING the ORDINATION and HIRE-ING of Women Ordained Pastors in ALL 50 United States and the States of Canada.

If he is NOT doing this…

Andreas – The Cardinals Rule, Declare WHAT the Scriptures AND EGW really meant to say. They Search the Scriptures for us.
Remember Savanarola, Huss, Tyndale.

EDIT-- Cassie is Correct when she says – Headship Men are OK “with Women in Ministry”. But they become fighting mad with the idea of "Women in Ordained Ministry."
So WHICH is President Jackson referring to???

Frank – "The Voice of God"
Isn’t there SOMEONE ELSE in the Universe who also Wanted to Be THE VOICE OF GOD??
Is THIS giving that Someone COMPETITION???

Claude – Closed Minds
HOW does the Holy Spirit OPEN Closed Minds?
He was Certainly a FAILURE at doing so with the General Conference in Jerusalem in the time of Jesus according to the 4 Gospels.
the Holy Spirit also had a number of FAILURES as recorded by Luke in the Book of Acts.
I SEE no Promise of SUCCESS with the present General Conference Members either.
According to Psalms and other places there ARE times when “the Lord will NOT Hear”.

Re: Pago from DownUnder.
When I was a kid growing up and into early adult years, I heard that the Jesuits had infiltrated and taken over the GC.
Pago reports that it is ACTUALLY the Communists who have taken over the Church. NOT the Jesuits.

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It’s not surprising Dan Jackson tries to support and encourage female pastors within the NAD. Whether this is enough, remains to be seen. (Well, women are tough … may be they will stick to their calling - despite the encouragement.)
What I wish to see acknowleged is that the voted document is far more sinister than endagering enthusiasm of female pastors. It is yet another step towards restructuring our church into a top down hierarchical church system, a system where “listening” means we need to listen in order to fire you; “reconcilitation” means subjugation. Theologically it contains the end of the sola scriptura principle of the preamble of our FB. The new developments go far beyond WO … which doesn’t make the issue of WO unimportant - on the contrary…

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This is indicative of the tired and flawed logic of those who oppose the ordination of the women. Clearly, without doubt or question, women are gifted and called to serve as ministers in the Seventh-day Adventist Church. The denomination officially recognizes the fact by allowing women to be commissioned ministers. From Ellen White to Sandra Roberts and Ella Simmons, women have ably served in leadership capacities with grace, wisdom and skill. There is no question that women have all the resources to serve alongside any male colleague.

Here is where the anti-ordination thinking breaks down irreparably. Ordination in the Adventist denomination is the church’s recognition of a person’s giftedness, calling to and acceptance of a call to pastoral ministry - nothing more and nothing less.

The emperor-has-no-clothes message from those who oppose ordaining women is this: we can recognize that God has gifted and called you to serve as a minister, but we cannot confer upon you the community’s collective acknowledgment and blessing because of your gender.

There is simply no way to characterize that except blatant gender discrimination, something which the Adventist Church in its Fundamental Beliefs has said it is biblically compelled not to do!

Disingenuous is too kind a word for it.

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Spectrum deleted my post before I had time to copy it.

I was specifically responding to a quote by Dan Jackson:

So that part was not off-topic, per your private message, Jared.

The other part of your private message referred to long quotes, so how about I make them short:

So with the traditional arguments against women’s ordination disintegrating, my old friend Sam Bacchiocchi vowed to take six months off and study the issue of ordination in order to write a book showing that the Bible is against it.
http://revelation-armageddon.com/2014/10/headship-theology/

My question to Dan Jackson is, are the things Jon Paulien discusses in that blog the things that you would call conspiracy theories?

I also posted the following link which discusses how extremely influential Neo-Calvinism is, and says it is profoundly ecumenical:

I also suggested that this isn’t a liberal/conservative issue.

The speed at which I got censored tends to reinforce that impression, but I will keep an open mind and heart.

I understand that Dan Jackson wants and needs to pour oil on troubled waters, but sometimes there just isn’t enough oil.

Please give me a minute to copy this. Thanks.


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We usually picture the the New Testament “church” as an hierarchical structure liked SDAs and RCs. The Bible simply doesn’t support that. Historians have found different Christianities scattered everywhere. The apostles and elders in Jerusalem weren’t the bosses of anyone. The curse of centralized power hadn’t struck yet.

In most cultures senior citizens are respected for the information and experience they have accumulated as the inevitable result of maturity. And that’s the meaning of the word presbuteros, isn’t it? Everyone who reached the age of “elderly” was was an elder. When the Scripture says to select (“ordain”) a senior citizen to perform oversight of a congregation, I don’t think they expected him to suddenly become an elder. They ordained (selected) elders to become bishops.

Or her. Epiphany! Our beloved fundamentalists are afraid of ordination of women because it will make them into elderly men of the cloth. “Ethel, come home!”

Hmm. “Woman of the cloth”. Nice ring.

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If such a statement would be addressed to me - I would be annoyed. - Just read it carefully ! And feel what is behind those gentle words !!!

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an excellent response to a narrow minded policy. gender has a pospose but it is not related to pastoral duties. Tom Z

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Several hours after watching the whole debate (very early morning Australian Eastern Standard Time) I was in the middle of Southport, the centre of Australia’s premiere tourist playground of the Gold Coast! I was on a mission, teaching a ESL class to Korean people. I was leaving the venue when my wife and I were accosted by a couple who had just attended the morning gathering for Yom Kippur. My new friend was carrying the scrolls of the Torah. He reminded me that today was Yom Kippur and actually invited me to the afternoon/ evening gathering of the congregation.

The symbolism of all of this is not lost on me as Adventist leaders through much of the world field after this vote truly afflict their souls on this solemn day. A day of judgement indeed!

@rking

The San Antonio GC Session rejected one potential way of achieving the ordination of women - do it according to the wishes of each Divisions! This was found not to be an acceptable solution to the issue. What the San Antonio GC Session did not do was to deny the validity of authorizing, blessing and affirming those women who have been called by God to serve in gospel ministry. How we do this is still a live question!

@pagophilus

Unfortunately for you, it must be said that Dr Arthur Stele, GC VP and Chairman of the Biblical Research Institute has said otherwise. He is the person who oversaw the whole TOSC process. He stated very succinctly at a post San Antonio vote news conference what I have just said. ie. That the San Antonio vote was merely a rejection of the proposal that Divisions rather than the GC establish selection criteria for ordinands.It was not a rejection of the ordination of women.

I do not advocate for such responsibility to be given to the Unions.

I challenge the global church to develop ways in which people of both genders can be affirmed and authorized by the laying on of hands and a credentializing of both men and women, to enable all involved in positions of Adventist leadership and the gospel ministry.

Such a scheme would not involve the establishment of a tenured clergy class and an underclass of Adventist leaders installed in their positions on a glorified contractual basis - in effect a hierarchical model. Rather, such a scheme would involve the establishment of a series of lateral categories into which all those involved in gospel ministry, including those involved in institutional leadership would be eligible to be affirmed and authorized for service by a rite of affirmation, blessing and authorization.

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When, in a General Conference, the judgment of the brethren assembled from all parts of the field is exercised, private independence and private judgment must not be stubbornly maintained, but surrendered. Never should a laborer regard as a virtue the persistent maintenance of his position of independence, contrary to the decision of the general body.

At times, when a small group of men entrusted with the general management of the work have, in the name of the General Conference, sought to carry out unwise plans and to restrict God’s work, I have said that I could no longer regard the voice of the General Conference, represented by these few men, as the voice of God. But this is not saying that the decisions of a General Conference composed of an assembly of duly appointed, representative men from all parts of the field should not be respected. God has ordained that the representatives of His church from all parts of the earth, when assembled in a General Conference, shall have authority (9T 260).


This is the passage from SOP TW read at the AC. It’s very clear and how this was handled was such that it does
have authority from heaven.

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Korah, Dathan and Abiram
+++++++++++++++++++
Andreas:
1.Have you been labeled a ‘rebel’? I have. I am wondering which name to choose. Or do we get a say? Not female names. Guess the ‘plain reading’ of scripture cannot envisage females rebelling. I am told the chorus out of Silver Springs is ‘Trust and obey for there’s no other way’

2.If the Adventist power elites in Silver Springs only knew what we know. Group dynamics, psychopathology, sociopathy, narcissistic personality disorder and even delusions of grandeur. Maybe not DSM V strict criteria, but definitely ‘troubled people’. Years of clinical experience does give one insight.

3.Thank God for logic and critical thinking. I wish you well, Best wishes Edgar

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The irony is it all started even before the meeting ended, right there in front of the delegates, by no one else other than our esteemed GC president when he stood and proclaimed, “No one wants to split this church,” or something to this effect.

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You are starting to sound the same as all agitators on similar topics, where the aim is to get something through, regardless how it’s done. The discussion prior to San Antonio was about whether to ordain women, not about whether that decision was to be made by divisions. Unfortunately that was the question posed to delegates to vote on. If the question had been “do you authorise individual unions to make the decision” do you really think the answer would have been any different? The church has said no to this 3 times. Why look for loopholes in order to sneak it in on a procedural technicality when it is obvious that the world church does not want it?

It’s looking more and more like the same sex marriage debate in Australia. The pro- people are determined to get it through whichever way they can, except through democratic means (a plebiscite) because they are afraid they might lose that one. So they play the equality card, the discrimination card, and mental illness card, the suicide card… Sound familiar? In the church on WO they also play the “young people will leave the church” card.

This is communism by stealth. Communists would get into power democratically only to circumvent or dismantle the democratic process once in power, in order to force their ideas on the population. It’s happening in Australia on LGBTQI+ rights and it’s happening in the church on women’s ordination.

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And so the comedy begins…

I lost half my burger across the table thanks to your comment.

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Courageous letter, Mr. Jackson. Don’t let up.

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Thankyou Pastor Jackson. A touching and thoughtful letter to our blessed women pastors and to us all. Great choice on that photo too! A picture can say more than a thousand words expecially in this case!
Stand strong, know that we are praying for you.

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So true, Jared, and behind this “flawed logic”, hides (perhaps) the real issue: the pumped up egos of men - male superiority and male control, absolutized as ‘God’s divine order’. Maybe it is all about a male inferiority-complex?

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It’s a good quote, but seems inadequate to trump other SP statements on how the church should or should not be organized and where authority should be placed. Context is everything. On the matter of women’s ordination and whether GC has the authority to impose its decisions on the unions in North America and Europe who have elected to ordain women, the authoritarian tone and negative language in the “unity” document did not sound like it came with the authority from Heaven. Revision and grace periods aside, it remains negative at its center. Those of us who may disagree with the GC position on this may not be at odds in any way with Scripture and the church’s real mission to share the Gospel. We also study the Bible and pray to God, though based on some of the articles and language coming out of the BRI in its publications, I am not sure our picture of God’s character is often the same. The harm to our church caused by the GC recent actions speaks for itself, raising serious questions of trust, is poorly timed, seems inadequately thought out and is not unifying. Is this an example of group think? In this and other matters, I strive to submit to God’s leading, not to the GC edicts and threats as originally written or implied, for they do not appear to be the same. Back to Ellen White, her view on church authority varied over time. But these two quotes may still be worthy of review: “It is working upon wrong principles that has brought the cause of God into its present embarrassment. The people have lost confidence in those who have the management of the work. Yet we hear that the voice of the Conference is the voice of God. Every time I have heard this, I thought it was almost blasphemy. The voice of the Conference ought to be the voice of God, but it is not, because some in connection with it are not men of faith and prayer, they are not men of elevated principle.” April 1, 1901, Ms. 37-1901.

“It has been some years since I have considered the General Conference as the voice of God.” August 26,1898, in 1899 GC Bulletin, p. 74
Context and circumstances are important. I wonder what Ellen White would say about all of this if she was alive today?

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This open, bold letter for the whole world to read is from the second most powerful church leader in Adventism, after Ted Wilson. He is the North American Division President whose Division holds, to a large extent, the purse strings of Adventism. Much of the money to run the church, and GC HQ, has traditionally come from the NAD.

His letter to all female pastors in the NAD couldn’t be clearer. Simply put, he is standing by every single one of Adventist female pastors in Canada and the USA and there is no way anything is going to change under his watch. He will not back down on their ordinations and appointments. He made sure a picture of him and Sandra Roberts, the one and only Female conference president in Adventism in his territory, appears in Spectrum to make his point. He has been known to support WO all along.

Now he is literally putting the GC and the whole Adventist world on notice. The NAD will not be moved despite this week’s “Unity” church governance vote that he opposed. He is clearly not accepting/supporting the San Antonio’s vote either. He finds himself, by default, thrust into the role of champion leader of first world (Western) Adventism that voted in their majority for WO in defiant opposition to Ted Wilson, most independent ministries and the 2nd and 3rd World Adventism, all well known for their opposition to WO.

Unless GC church leadership finds a Solomonic compromise within the next 12 months, first World Adventism will go its own way, possibly with Dan Jackson as its most likely Presidential nominee and Ted Wilson continuing as the President of 2nd and 3rd World Adventism, and role model for independent ministries.

In a sense, Biblical history will then repeat itself. Judah and Israel will go their separate ways with the hope that the divorce will not be too messy. If NAD and Unions in the Western World persist in doing their own thing and a compromise solution cannot be found (such as let’s not send more women to seminaries and let’s not ordain more women pastors), 2017 Annual council might vote to refer the matter to the next GC in 2020 to hopefully put the matter to rest, one way or another.

Whether we like it or not, and no matter how many smooth pronouncements we will be hearing from GC church leadership and others, the fact of the matter is that we have now entered what could arguably be considered as the choppiest and most turbulent phase of Adventist 153 year history, after Minneapolis (1888). Now it’s all about ecclesiastical authority, how is the church going to be governed, and how this will impact its world wide witness. It’s not business as usual, as some might wish or think. Much prayer is needed by all parties concerned to truly discern what the Holy Spirit is saying to God’s Remnant church at a critical time when earth’s history is more than likely about to close with the second coming of Christ.

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