An Open Letter to Fellow Seventh-day Adventists


(reliquum) #54

Trolling here again, @ajshep , but not taking your thin bait.

It is fair, if someone from anonymity of their keyboard voluntarily posts content or exhibits demeanor inimical to forum rules (or outside christian decorum), to permit the group to see and evaluate said content. This is not shaming, per se (although I used the term, albeit with a slight difference of meaning) but is fair game.

To hide in secret what someone has done (since you brought it up, for instance, the backstage of the GC charade) is abetting furtherance of the falsehoods.

Both here, and at the GC, education, ie publicity, is needful
Which is exactly what this magazine and forum portends to do-and does, quite well.
Spectrum could do better, but resources are thin here, as opposed to those brass lined Silver Springs annals.
Tyranny bleeds control and secrecy, mis/dis/uneducation;
freedom trades in disclosure and openness, education.


(Allen Shepherd) #55

In 1 Corinthians 12, the Spirit gives many gifts to his people. Many gifts are not followed by ordination. In fact, most of the gifts do not involve the need for it. All manner of spiritual leaders are not ordained. I was a spiritual leader in my church for years before I was ordained.

As far as your commissioned pastor, I was viewed as the pastor before I was ordained. I was “real” and called pastor. It seems to me his thinking is in his mind only.

?? Where does it say Phoebe was ordained?

You are right. There are no male qualifications, except that all who were were male. Some can point to that. That fact is not some made up thing. They are not making something up, but following by example, a legitimate thing to do. You do not agree, but that is there.

thank you George! I will take it.

I see… You can do it, but it is not appropriate elsewhere. Your position seems a bit hypocritical to me.


(Robert Lindbeck) #56

@ajshep you should have finished your sentence at this point. The fact that all were male does not prove or enhance your argument in any fashion. Just because all have been in the past does not in any way, shape, or form mean that all should be into the future.

Just what exactly are their concerns? If it has to do with not being in the Bible, I suggest they drop their keys and credit cards in the box by the door on the way out.


#57

Seems like all the more reason for an accepting, loving church community


(Kim Green) #58

As with many studies…this topic may need more decades of research, etc., before any real conclusions can be made about the suicide rate/ssm, etc.


#59

Hooey, baloney, that is what some others say about the Sabbath, the sanctuary/judgment message, and our understanding of death/resurrection. Does that Jeckel and Hyde (English for really bad dude) rant make them right also? It seems that our own standard is not very sound unless it can be analyzed against Scripture.


#60

I think we both agree there is needed a loving church community. What I do suspect is that we might have to “nut out” what that really means. Some suggestions.

God loves you and doesn’t expect you to overcome your desires, He just loves you as you are. God loves you, and if you want to get in with this loving community, you will change slowly.

God loves you, and He wants you to love Him in return - and perhaps you can’t see it yet, He has unlimited power which He wants to make available for you to walk the talk. He wants you to be ready when Jesus comes again - which is very soon. If you can see the difference between how you live, and the purity of God, and want Him to help you overcome through Jesus, He can, will you trust Him today?


#61

Are you stating here that you believe that gay people can become heterosexuals with God’s help?

Are you stating that to belong to a loving church community, a gay individual must change?


#62

Becoming heterosexual is not on the table as though its an either or. That’s like saying I must either love wine or love beer. You only give me two options and I must conform to your choice making. I love neither. Why does the homosexual have to become heterosexual, as though he must indulge in something - he must have some sexual craving realized and satisfied.

Your next question is the hardest for many to see or understand because of the current climate and manipulation of most people’s thinking. According to the Bible, a person who is accustomed to doing evil must change in order to become a son or daughter of God. If I was accustomed to stealing I must claim the promise of God and take the first step toward overcoming that sin. The same if I imbibed in the alcoholic drink, smoked, lustful look, rude to my parents, indulged hateful thoughts, had no regard for the Sabbath (if I have been made aware of God’s claims about that day). Knowing how bad we humans are, that could be quite a list. I remember hearing one brother not of our faith who was taking meetings many years ago. He indulged the night club scene with copious amounts of alcohol and sex. When he became a Christian, he plead for God to help him overcome, and he now praises God, stating “praise God, He gives you new taste buds”

We could extend the list to also includes sexual sins in both classes, porn and romantic novels of that nature, and even closer to home, self abuse and adultery.

But it seems that homosexual sins must not be on the radar nowadays. It is somehow different -it must be exempt. According to God in His word, its not. Its right up there with the rest of them.

So my question is, why must this one be exempt from the overcoming we all must do to be a true Christian, and to be ready to hear the sweetest words at the second coming, "well done, thou good and faithful servant, enter into the joy of the Lord. Matthew 7:21-13 tells us that there are multitudes who make a claim of Christianity, but Jesus demands more than just talking the talk. As I said to another, we must also be prepared by God’s grace to walk the talk.


(Kim Green) #63

How does one “Becoming heterosexual”?

What is “self abuse”?


(Kim Green) #64

"it seems that our own standard is not very sound unless it can be analyzed against Scripture."

If only everyone could agree upon what Scripture is saying…this would be the first (and so far) fruitless step. :slight_smile:


(Kim Green) #65

"Our third world brethren object on cultural grounds. No WO in the Bible. So, we should respect their concerns."

Of course…they don’t have to ordain women, etc., and the rest of the world who wishes to do so- can. Really simple concept. It is just too bad that TW and cronies have pushed the issue into the current mess.


#66

Hi Kim, been a while. I was replying to Harrpa who said by way of two questions that a gay has to become heterosexual if they are not to be a homosexual. I said that is not the issue here. I thought that would be clear.

“What is self abuse?” I know the KJV does tend to couch certain things in muted words to avoid becoming too crass, or too vulgar - it is supposed to be read in churches as well as private study, but you don’t know, or are you baiting here? :slight_smile:


#67

“IF only everyone could agree upon what Scripture is saying” I know, it frustrates me too. Take for instance, Galatians 3:28 as a classic. WO advocates will insist this verse means that in church situations, there is no church authority or position that should not be available to anyone. We might take it one step further, lets make little children a pastor, or perhaps a division president. Seems silly when we try and make the Scripture verse say that.

But I have noted blank stares, and equally silly replies from WO advocates that this verse has nothing to do with voted church positions, high or low. Pardon my frustration in case any of them are “listening in” here.

IT HAS ALL TO DO WITH WHO CAN BE SAVED. WHERE IN ALL THE WORLD DO WE READ IN THE SURROUNDING VERSE THAT IT SUGGESTS ANY OTHER THING? I will quote just a few of the surrounding verses:

“26 For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus.
27 For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ.
28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.
29 And if ye be Christ’s, then are ye Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.”

That theme is about salvation if ever there was one. And sorely needed in the times Paul lived in with the Jews still suffering from their “elitist” mentality.

Why do I get so frustrated? To me its so clear that even a child could discern it. Again, its like if I was training a new driver to operate a motor vehicle. Its a beautiful clear sunny day, and so I want them to clutch in and put the gears into first gear, take a look around to see if its clear to drive away by slowly releasing the clutch, then— but I get no further, they have put the windscreen wipers on.

Apparently they had listened to someone else that if its not clear they should put the wipers on. I keep turning them off because they are not needed (read applicable to this current situation), and can cause a distraction, but the learner driver insists it must be done, and repeatedly puts them one.

Is not the instructor somewhat justified if the learner will not listen, but insists it is right to use the wipers in this situation?

So too, after listening to this text used so wrongly time and again, one gets that feeling that says, “why won’t you take a decent look at the text, see the surrounding verses also, it has an entirely different meaning than you give it?”

In the past before this agitation of the DJ, GW, WJ and henchmen, we understood this verse correctly, now what has changed that this, and other verses I might add, are now subject to a WO cultural understanding. It is as has been tacitly admitted, we are letting culture determine what is right and wrong, even in our biblical exegesis.

As some have now said in condescending tones, our brethren from far away lands - perhaps with an intellect not equal to ours - have unfortunately carried the vote, condescendingly we respect them, but they cannot be up on our cultural needs. At least Dr jeckel and Hyde has done so in his rant.


(Kim Green) #68

Yes…it has been a while. :slight_smile: What brings you back to Spectrum these days?

"I was replying to Harrpa who said by way of two questions that a gay has to become heterosexual if they are not to be a homosexual. I said that is not the issue here. I thought that would be clear."

No, it wasn’t clear…especially if one is using the term, “Becoming homosexual”, which connotes that it is a choice to become homosexual. I know that Harrpa doesn’t believe what you said.

"Self abuse" to the best of my knowledge that term is not in the Bible. It is an antiquated victorian term used by EGW. It is best to use more scientifically accurate terms so they are easily understood.


(Kim Green) #69

I believe that you are responding to the phrase that I used: “IF only everyone could agree upon what Scripture is saying”. I don’t believe that it is possible to everyone to agree…I don’t get frustrated anymore because it isn’t going to happen. What is clear to one is not to another and it isn’t about intellect or spiritual insights. If one looks at all the different denominations in the world that have schism over WO and LGBT issues- why do we think that Adventism is going to escape the same?


(George Tichy) #70

Kim,
Anyone who uses that term is declaring either, 1) Ignorance, lack of education about the issue, or, 2) Intellectual dishonesty and intention to deceive.

In any case, it’s not even worth to engage in any conversation with people who refuse to acknowledge the scientific data available in our days. Neurobiology and neuropsychology have uncovered so much information on the issue that it would be a true waste of time and mental energy to discuss it with those who choose to be obtuse in their thinking. Their choice, their loss.


#71

For a start, got blacklisted for a month. The original statement by Harrpa was "gay people can become heterosexuals with God’s help which I turned around by similar logic that it wasn’t about heterosexual.

The fuller question would read, “Why does the homosexual have to become heterosexual?” Did you miss that query when you inadvertently turned it around and said, “Becoming homosexual?”

For me, the question under discussion at that time wasn’t about one or the other. That is what I said, and i that context. It wasn’t some clinical statement. Interestingly, thought, now that its been brought up, some so wrapped in culture views on this, that when one becomes a Christian they can by God grace, stop doing the wrong in one, but cannot the other? If the belief is that one cannot change, but the other can, that sounds one sided.

I know some are so wrapped in the psycho analysis theories of atheists and humanists, many who do not have Christian perspectives on human psychology, that they follow any, and all, of the “theories” these teach they are fact. Poor G.

Something I have witnessed several times now, that whenever subjects such as homosexual behavior is discussed, and ultimately the topic comes to the area of how wrong it is, and needs to be overcome just as other sins have to be overcome, some who don’t believe in overcoming, try to draw the attention away toward other problems of a sexual nature, ( and here’s the spoiler - they want you to focus on what OTHER great sinners are doing) so theirs cannot be seen in its true light. They forget that this tactic is as old as Adam and Eve’s first sin. You know, its always some else’s fault. Those heterosexual degenerates doing what they do. And let’s face it, of course there are many areas in this that are true. But these are brought into the picture to “drown out” the glaring problem in homosexuality. Nothing is sorted by bringing them up as a sort of blind to cover our own sins.

I have trouble picturing a sinner, being truly sorry for his sins who at the foot of the cross (figuratively speaking) asking for forgiveness, but stops and says, but Jesus you ought to have a gander that those others, they are really bad. How far would Jesus regard the sincerity of such a forgiveness? What value in seeking to minimize our own wrongs, but drawing attention to others wrongs? It only serves to cement the wrongdoer in their own sin by comforting the conscience with the “I’m not so bad syndrome.”

I communicated with one person with a “ministry” helping homosexual persons. In several articles by this person and others put on the internet in this “ministry” we had this principle in action time and again. I tried to sum up the content of the site, but wasn’t well received. If I can give it briefly here, you might see why. “Perhaps your homosexual behavior is not good, but then there are those heterosexuals who do such terrible things, and these heterosexual sins were listed attempting to show the homosexual behavior is not so bad.”

In the “ministry” there was no attempt at saying, we all need to change, to conform our will to God’s will, to acknowledge our human depravity and fall upon Jesus for forgiveness, and claim His promise that He will be with us when we are tempted so that He can and will help us in the life of new Christian in which Paul says " if any man be in Christ, *he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new." 2 COR 5:17. It needs to start with me, and This process never stops until probation closes.

Self abuse is a term used in the SOP to describe masturbation. "The Problems of Self-abuse.–Some who make a high profession do not understand the sin of self-abuse and its sure results. Long-established habit has blinded their understanding. They do not realize the exceeding sinfulness of this degrading sin. CG 441.1. Some in recent decades laughed at the warnings in the SOP regarding this. I think the terms she used were risk of going mad. It wasn’t until some decades ago also, that we found out the physics of this situation regarding large Zinc losses in such a regular indulgence. And what function does Zinc play in the brain?
Something for you to research. But again this only dealt with the mechanics of the situation. The psychological aspects of it hinge around sex being an intended shared experience of two loving person, and not the continual self-satisfaction of me alone aspect. Although you are guarded in your reply, it appears you do know what it means, and I was only addressing you. Perhaps I too am antiquated, but I prefer in print that we should use terms that are not vulgar or crude.

If I can respond to your other comment in reply to mine that “if only everyone could agree upon what Scripture is saying.” In a “type” of the sincere Christians of the last days, preparing for the latter rain outpouring, we should take note of the upper room experience. The account in Acts 1 and 2 tells us they were of one accord, and post script to that we read in Acts 17:11 that the noble in the church at Thessalonica searched the Scripture daily to see if those things were so. In other words, they weren’t puffed up with their own importance, but humble and willing to learn from the Scripture the true path and Godly program from God Himself. I have trouble picturing one of that number saying, "let me show you what the Scripture says that will prove my theory.

Try as I might, I see little of this upper room experience in the NAD leadership. In Jackson’s latest tirade, he demonstrates so little of this New Testament spirit, that unless he repents, the church might have to lose him from a position of authority at the least. So on and off, exhibiting a spirit of rancor one moment, and another moment later, belittling the brethren from overseas who he accords little mental equivalence to his own, and condescendingly says “we respect them” but goes on to do just the opposite. “They wouldn’t be able to understand our situation here.”

So yeah (responding to your phrase), you are right, looking at the entire debacle from an entirely human perspective, there will be little agreement. But God can and will change those who are willing to be made willing to have His character develop within. What love will be between the brethren, what union of understanding in the Scriptures that will follow.

Your question “why do we think Adventism will escape the same?” is not easy to respond to this these days. When we had the Armstrong World Wide Church of God fold on the Sabbath, we saw the majority just change with the leadership.

And in our case, we have had agitation after agitation regarding various points of our faith for the last sixty to seventy years, but instead of the majority following the cunningly devised fables of popular “theologians,” we have largely remained faithful to Adventist’s biblical doctrines. What has been the difference? To a minor degree it is our deeper understanding of Scripture; but the larger part has been God’s gift to us in the Spirit Of Prophecy. Except for those who run with every popular wind of doctrine, it is hard for anyone introducing error to bring out their views without someone comparing what he/she says to the SOP message in the same area.

Instead of some nowadays being thankful for that, they tend to take their hatred out on the SOP. If you’ve heard it like I have, it goes something like this: “I love the Spirit of Prophecy, but you place too much emphasis on that little old lady who had such low education (like I have with my Phd doctorate is inferred in that statement), you really shouldn’t make her into a god, or replace the Bible with her writings.” There are several more, but that will do. All an exaggeration intended to convey a lie.

When it comes to WO and LGBTI+ issues, if we all loved the Bible as we ought, these issues would be so minor they would never get a foothold. The answer is not in the issue, but in the many who have been misled by the advocates for these issues. They hold the answer in their hands, its right there in front of them. By the same token we do tend to forget these troubled times are predicted by the very SOP writings they disregard, and some hate. That’s a kind of irony. I agree with half of your statement: “it isn’t about intellect or spiritual insights.” I agree with your though about intellect from a purely human standpoint.

The last part (or spiritual insights) has some concerns because the following verse has been demonstrated time and again in the lives and understanding of the Bible by numerous Bible students through the ages, including several SDA scholars up to our day: “If any man will do his will, he shall know of the doctrine, whether it be of God, or whether I speak of myself.” John 7:17. Countless thousands or millions also who have not been drawn to our attention would be in that number.

One of the key features of knowing God’s will for us is to be willing ourselves to follow Him implicitly. The following is one part of a satire feature I recently came across. I’ve shortened it to save space, but I feel it has an object lesson in itself. It goes like this:

"It’s kind of an open secret that most Christians haven’t read the Bible because most people have literally no idea what the Bible actually says. And the truth is, your church is desperate to keep it that way. Your pastor doesn’t want you to read the Bible, because if you did you’d realize it’s full of verses that are obviously false and also completely contradict modern values, which are obviously the correct values, because they’re the modern ones. Well, here is just one of the ten . . .

Amos 3:7
The verse: “Surely the Lord GOD will do nothing, but he revealeth his secret unto his servants the prophets.”

What your pastor doesn’t want you to know about it: Your pastor wants you to believe that God is all-powerful, but even the Bible clearly says, “God will do nothing.” True, yes, but devastating for Christianity.
So, checkmate, Holy Rollers. You all are just lucky someone was here to read the Bible for you and tell you what to think about it before your church was able to brainwash you. As the saying goes, the #truth has set you free.
Wish I could remember where I read that.

WO advocates use the Bible in the same manner as this satirist.


(Kim Green) #72

EVERYONE sees/thinks/feels that the Bible teaches, etc., what they themselves are wont to believe for a variety of reasons, some known and unknown. If this were not so…there would only be one Christian Church. The SDA church will likely split over theological differences just like many other denominations. At this point and time…I can see that it may be for the best. No one is going to change.


(George Tichy) #73

This will certainly happen if this GC admin keeps pushing into making “UNITY = UNIFORMITY.” If such an ignorant concept prevails, only because they want to have inquisitorial powers, I bet there will be a split.

Basically, the split already exists. A large SDA population do not accept unity and uniformity as being equal, and the don’t accept this power grab just executed by the GC at the AC18. Therefore, if the GC pushes hard, the split will be materialized. I already made my mind, I will never stay with the group that enforces discrimination of women and abuse of religious power.