An Open Letter to Fellow Seventh-day Adventists


(Thomas J Zwemer) #34

What is the Christain way to deal or relate to sinners. The obvious answer is quite simple. Just answer the question —How do you wish to be treated?


(Dee Roberts) #35

Frank, you and others might find this article enlightening. https://divinity.uchicago.edu/sightings/male-female-and-transgender-notes-theological-anthropology?fbclid=IwAR0s8D113dczqIQwXzpp9E5fEHeBjrNinBTQjv1ZUSfhfTOZRbtVvdoHzGE. You will find the book that Randi reviewed here, a month or so ago, informative as. https://spectrummagazine.org/article/2018/09/04/book-review-transforming-bible-and-lives-transgender-christians.


#36

I find your comment interesting in that you seem to view issues around this as an “either or” in your second sentence. Why can’t the church be careful about both doctrinal truths and spreading the teachings of Jesus. I don’t see Paul, the great evangelist having a problem with that. “Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned;…” Romans 16:17.

I’ve read five of your articles, and yes, the situation regarding suicides is worse than you relate.in The Violence of a Heartless Theology. What is hard to fathom if yours, and other proffered solutions being put forth are to work, that is, more acceptance and marriage legitimacy, then we should see some results from Sweden, which has for many years legalized SSM. Do we find this, not in the least. There was no drop in suicides. Other countries or USA states have made some claims, but every time the stats they report are analysed, there seems to be either gross exaggeration on one side, or minimizing other stats on the other. Legalizing something that in itself has problems makes no difference in the long run.

Apart from your articles, I don’t know you, but I feel for you in your quest to find peace. As with all of us, that peace can only be found in following God His way and not ours.


#37

Do you have sources to share?


(EdZirkwitz) #38

I attended a LGBTQ church a number of years ago. The music was worship appropriate, the message was scripture based and I felt welcomed: a church open to anyone. After I attended a social time and later went to a restaurant to eat. Throughout I felt included in a wholesome way in every aspect.


#39

Here are some places for stats, some will not be about the Sweden situation

https://carm.org/statistics-homosexual-promiscuity

https://familyvoice.org.au/news/2016/high-suicide-rate-in-married-homosexuals-swedish-study/

(now out of date)

https://josephsciambra.com/gays-more-suicidaland-so-are-gay-married-couples/

You may also like:

Taken about the 2005 era in Sweden
Seriously thought about suicide Men 42% and Attempted 11%
Seriously thought about suicide Women 47% and Attempted 26%

Family acceptance still blamed for Homosexual negative feelings in Sweden today.


(Allen Shepherd) #40

I thought that WO was in no way associated with homosexuality. But this article seems to link them as two things that must be addressed in the church by “inclusion therapy”.

It would be best not to speak out of both sides of your mouth. Either they are associated or not. And since the Spectrum editors have chosen to publish this piece, I would think that they feel they are related…


#41

Sure just like ice cream cones are related to astronauts, teenage texting leads to drug use, or men who care for their children are not manly.

You constantly conflate…lol


(Robert Lindbeck) #42

@ajshep, the editors of Spectrum in publishing this article only prove one thing…they are open to conversation. Conversations that include both points of view.


(Allen Shepherd) #43

Er, I don’t think it was I conflating but the author of the piece. She does lump the two together:

The church is struggling with this issue, WO. It is a much easier issue than homosexuality. We can differ on WO and still be Adventists who believe the Bible, as WO is not mentioned there. Not a “testing truth” as far as I am concerned (would you think it was?). Either way is OK with me. You feel differently of course, but i would not object if you had won the vote and we were doing WO willy-nilly.

Homosexuality is on a different plane. The Bible condemns homosexual behavior without any caveats. To accept those that behave that way as members or leaders would clearly be a repudiation of Biblical teaching, in my mind an instance where we would be staying from truth as taught there, a much more serious problem.

So, arguing about WO may be just keeping us from the greater test. I pray our church can weather such a difficulty. May God have mercy on us.


(Allen Shepherd) #44

Has there been an article opposing WO on Spectrum? Did i miss something?


(Robert Lindbeck) #45

Not that I am aware…why not submit one?

@webEd, has there been an article submitted to Spectrum in favour of WO?


#46

yes of course, because the Gifts of the Spirit including Ministry are subject to a vote.

I am sure the Holy Spirit is sitting on the edge of His seat waiting to be approved by the GC so He can go about His work.

Hooey…


(Allen Shepherd) #47

??

Do you think my position is that an individual needs ordination or a vote before the Holy Spirit can work with or through them? Just the opposite. He can work on or through whomever he wishes at any time, ordination or not. Ordination is a rite to recognize the Spirit’s work, or to authorize an individual as one speaking for the group.

Ellen was full of the HS before she had any “credential”. Ellen is the strongest argument for WO. Our third world brethren object on cultural grounds. No WO in the Bible. So, we should respect their concerns.

Or are you speaking of something else?


(reliquum) #48

One can always also add the answer with copy/paste of said post (and perhaps minor, marked, edits) and use the general “reply” option at the very bottom of page, rather answering to the to-be-deleted comment only. It preserves the continuity of conversation.

I know the manpower required for webEd to maintain decorum here is taxing, but it would perhaps be advantageous to not wholesale delete offenders posts, but perhaps clean them up a bit by merely redacting. A little forum-shaming has a way of reducing such future tripe.


(Allen Shepherd) #49

You mean you think shaming is OK? I thought that was out of bounds. Not appropriate for Christians, and especially the GC and their committees.

Actually shaming is quite effective. It is being used by the left now, and really works very well. Many conservatives are reluctant to speak for fear of it. Who wants to go against the crowd? Takes real courage.

So, your “forum shaming” would be effective, i agree.

But if you think it is OK here, then the church is not violating any standard by using it in their sphere.


#50

This isn’t the real question, actually.

Ordination in our church is the official recognition that the Holy Spirit is at work in a person’s spiritual life as a spiritual leader.

It allows a pastor (as a male commissioned pastor told me this week) to actually be viewed as a “real” pastor by the board. The congregation doesn’t view a commissioned pastor, he said, as actually authorized to perform the duties of the church, such as ordaining deacons and deaconesses.

He also said he is not allowed, as a commissioned pastor, at hospitals where he visits parishioners who are sick, to by an “official” or approved chaplain with entry privileges into a patient’s room. It’s a conflict to try to get a pass because “commissioned” is not recognized for this purpose. The indwelling of the Holy Spirit in the “commissioned” pastor’s life is not the issue. The issue is the official authorization to act. To serve in one’s best capacities as determined by the Holy Spirit and affirmed by the Church Body.

It’s the authorization that Paul gave to P. as told in the first verses of Romans 16, to take the letters to the Roman churches–the book of Romans, the one with the Gospel of Jesus and upon which the Protestant Reformation is based. To downgrade her, belittle her, demean her, demonize her is untruthful and worse.

Commissioning, your answer, continues the inequity and institutionalizes discrimination based solely on gender–nothing else. Even male pastors who are commissioned understand well the lack of authorization to operate at full capacity in the ministry.


#51

Hooey, you still insist that males are the default…therefore one must prove WO…hooey.

This is exactly where the problem lies, male is default. The Bible and FB #15/17 have no gender qualification and why people make this up is a very strange thing.

The Holy Spirit through a women could raise the dead and you would still insist that they cannot be recognized.


(George Tichy) #52

That’s probably what any outsider would understand that is happening upon watching what some people say about the issue. I mean, it’s so ridiculous and… baloney!

I am actually glad that the great majority of the Church members (and even pastors and workers) have no clue on what is happening at the top of the administration. Many don’t even know that there is as AC every year. The Church for sure do not care about informing them on the real issue.

Which is probably providential, otherwise I the motivation to evangelize or proselytize would certainly be extinguished. I mean, who would tell others what is really going on in Church? Many would probably even leave the church, and we would experience a negative growth (…).

As it is, any church member who is not a discriminator must be feeling very ashamed of belonging to this Denomination. I certainly am. The only thing that makes it up for me is that I do not feel as belonging to the Denomination, just to a local church - and I have two good ones around here, both have female senior pastors, great preachers.


(George Tichy) #53

Allen, you have demonstrated enough on this site that your position is always “no position.” You are a very flexible guy, I must give you this. You support discrimination of women, but then suddenly ordination is not an important thing. But then, it’s OK to ordain men, but… women can be just commissioned and do the same job as the ordained men do, etc.

Hooey… baloney… Jackson said it well!