Evil: Ancient and Modern

Thanks for the reference about Clive James. I got the Cultural Amnesia book.

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…I’ll meet you there…

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While reading this article and a recent one called ‘Burn for the Infinite’ in your own blog a few thoughts came to mind:

You wrote that ‘…maybe with respect, we need to bracket for the time being the things we’ve been indoctrinated with and widen our scope.’ That’s what I tried to tell you earlier by saying I think you are trapped in Adventist theology and by providing you a link to a very different understanding.

You also wrote, ‘…thought and desire, reason and imagination…these are the avenues of the soul Godwards…’ once again, an anthropocentric, Adventist view as all four are man-centred.
What about personal revelation by God?
The title of your blog article reminded me of the two disciples on the road to Emmaus. ‘Were not our hearts burning within us while He was speaking to us on the road, while He was explaining the Scriptures to us?’ Not according to their free will, but when Jesus deemed it appropriate, ‘their eyes were prevented from recognizing Him’ and when He deemed it appropriate ‘their eyes were opened and they recognized Him’. Are we different? Isn’t that how the gospel was explained to Paul? (Gal 1:11-12). I’m beginning to think that’s how it must be for all of us - a revelation given to each of us when God sees fit; some in this present age and some through death and judgment ‘in the ages to come’ (Eph 2:7), as Andrew Jukes explained. Did you study his article?

I’ll spare you the thousand words:

Caravaggio, Supper at Emmaus

Thanks Cassie.
Interesting reactions of the listeners in the painting. I wonder if the third one (the one standing) represents the Holy Spirit (with the wine and water nearest him on the table) or another person attentively listening and trying to absorb what Christ is explaining but without judgment and reaction. (Many think the two disciples were Jesus’ uncle Cleopas, and Luke.)

I appreciate your contributions to all these discussions but I cannot hope to read (let alone study) all that you suggest. The breadth and depth (and sometimes dizzying speed) of your intellect is often too much for me.

As I try to digest the recent comments on another thread from those supporting LGT (particularly one in church employment), and its seeming endorsement by Adventist leadership, I am becoming more and more convinced that many in positions of influence in Adventism do not base their faith on the gospel. To me, the lack of support offered to The One Project is a verification of this. One reason for my suggestion to Barry to explore other views.

That’s why I think Hanz Gutierrez’ contributions are so important, Dave.

He understands the paradoxical, dialectical nature of a prophetic movement, it seems to me.

Adventism is dead in the water, and only by embracing process can we catch the Zephyr of the Holy Spirit, I fervently believe.

And…I certainly hope no one tries to “read and study” all this stuff that comes out of the fire hose that is me! :smile:

It’s all fractal. Feeling into it suffices, but only if one is interested, of course.

And maybe it all signifies nothing. That thought occurs to me regularly. . . .

(Been listening to Ascent of Mount Carmel and The Dark Night of the Soul by St. John of the Cross on Audible—the ways we fool ourselves into thinking we’re “spiritual” are legion…sigh. . . .)


I believe that Ellen White idolatry is the root systemic sin that has left Seventh-day Adventism dead in the water.

See thou do it not!



Enchanted Dialectical Theology:


Interesting question, Dave.

Some say that the standing man is impassive because he is a wait person who didn’t previously know Jesus, therefore the rush of Revelation, which I can almost physically feel coming at me from that dynamic moment, passed him by.

Plausible. But I like your take, really.

And once the writer writes or the painter paints, the future of the creation is in the control of the beholders.

We are all meaning makers, so I can see it both ways without laboring over the proper “exegesis,” so to speak.

Caravaggio was a murderer, so what did he know about Revelation? Maybe more than he knew he knew, as he tried to make a buck.

And, most importantly, I think, Hanz is not North American or British, with all the nauseating, unconscious, horribly damaging baggage that come with that, e.g., Manifest Destiny (which Ellen White was not immune to), The White Man’s Burden, British Israelism, etc.

The White Man’s Burden

Take up the White Man’s burden–
Send forth the best ye breed–
Go bind your sons to exile
To serve your captives’ need;
To wait in heavy harness,
On fluttered folk and wild–
Your new-caught, sullen peoples,
Half-devil and half-child.

Take up the White Man’s burden–
In patience to abide,
To veil the threat of terror
And check the show of pride;
By open speech and simple,
An hundred times made plain
To seek another’s profit,
And work another’s gain.

Take up the White Man’s burden–
The savage wars of peace–
Fill full the mouth of Famine
And bid the sickness cease;
And when your goal is nearest
The end for others sought,
Watch sloth and heathen Folly
Bring all your hopes to nought.

Take up the White Man’s burden–
No tawdry rule of kings,
But toil of serf and sweeper–
The tale of common things.
The ports ye shall not enter,
The roads ye shall not tread,
Go mark them with your living,
And mark them with your dead.

Take up the White Man’s burden–
And reap his old reward:
The blame of those ye better,
The hate of those ye guard–
The cry of hosts ye humour
(Ah, slowly!) toward the light:–
“Why brought he us from bondage,
Our loved Egyptian night?”

Take up the White Man’s burden–
Ye dare not stoop to less–
Nor call too loud on Freedom
To cloke your weariness;
By all ye cry or whisper,
By all ye leave or do,
The silent, sullen peoples
Shall weigh your gods and you.

Take up the White Man’s burden–
Have done with childish days–
The lightly proferred laurel,
The easy, ungrudged praise.
Comes now, to search your manhood
Through all the thankless years
Cold, edged with dear-bought wisdom,
The judgment of your peers!

British hymn, Jerusalem

It could be a very good development that Adventism is becoming de-centered from North America.

Go Hanz! Change comes from the fringe; open-source innovation!

Cassie, I think you are much more optimistic about Adventism than I am.

Proclaiming the imminent return of Christ constantly for almost 175 years can’t be good for a prophetic movement’s credibility.

Hence, I try to provide thoughts about and links to other views, which I believe embrace more of Scripture and in different (and I believe profound) ways.
If I read you correctly, you try to do the same thing.

I am slightly familiar with St. John of the Cross and the trials of his life but confess that at this point his writings are still on my ‘to read’ list.

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Please notice that I make an (obviously not clear enough) distinction between “Adventism” and “a prophetic movement.”

Adventism is doomed. My opinion.

Racism alone could sink it. My opinion.

The Great Advent Movement…well…you can’t rope the Wind!



As for “reading lists,” St. John of the Cross, etc., it is enough to sorta/kinda get my drift that we have many slippery ways we fool ourselves.

I certainly do, anyway.

My conservative SDA 80-year-old ex-hubby and I have been talking a lot about The Elijah Message, and The Early Rain and The Latter Rain lately, and I’ve also been talking about it with an ex-SDA visionary friend, Dave.

Ex-hubby is from a tiny rural town in Nebraska, and he talks about winter wheat and early and later rain, and VERNALIZATION.

In any case, the Bible normalizes the concept of “my lord delayeth his coming.”

God isn’t looking for “credibility,” or “vindication,” IMHO, He is patiently looking for a Harvest.

Be patient therefore, brethren, unto the coming of the Lord.

Behold, the husbandman waiteth for the precious fruit of the earth, and hath long patience for it, until he receive the early and latter rain.

Be ye also patient; stablish your hearts: for the coming of the Lord draweth nigh.

Grudge not one against another, brethren, lest ye be condemned: behold, the judge standeth before the door.

Take, my brethren, the prophets, who have spoken in the name of the Lord, for an example of suffering affliction, and of patience.

Behold, we count them happy which endure. Ye have heard of the patience of Job, and have seen the end of the Lord; that the Lord is very pitiful, and of tender mercy.

—James 5

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Vernalization: Barley Harvest People

Yoreh and Malkosh

Even though it is fairly late in the year in terms of the Western calendar, the rains that begin in the Fall are known as the yoreh, or the early rains, since it is the start of the rainy season.

These early rains are reason to be glad after a hot, dry summer, and the ground can be broken up ready to work the fields.

Towards the springtime, around the time of Passover, Israel will have the latter rains, known as the malkosh, necessary for the ripening of the barley and grain.


PERFECTION: Barley, Type of the Perfect Sacrifice

Anyone with a nutritional science background can look at
the analysis of green barley leaves and be amazed at the
near-perfect balance among the nutrients.

But as a Christian, my desire was to understand the biochemical structure, and the
function of this food within the context of God’s overall design,
for only then would the essential purpose of its nearly perfect
configuration come into true perspective…

From the beginning of Israel’s history as a nation and right
down to the present day, barley is the sheaf used as the Offering
of the Firstfruits in the Feast of the Passover.

Of course, the basic requirements of an offering is that it be ‘perfect, without
spot or stain.’

Barley, due to its early maturation, is almost
completely free of the pets and infestations other crops are
plagued with. Thus, it is naturally perfect…"

Dr. Swope goes on to recount how she came to read
Lev.23:9-11 and then 1 Cor.15:20 and saw how Scripture links the
firstfruits, barley, with our saviour, Jesus Christ.

Then she realized that we as Christians are a “kind of firstfruits of all
He created” (James 1:18, NIV).

With all this in mind Dr. Swope started an in-depth study of the Feasts of Israel. Here in part
is what she wrote as we continue in her book.


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It’s over…nobody wins. . . .

Court Documents: Shawnee Mission Health Interim CEO Feared Incarceration While at Previous Job

The Kansas City Star reported that the suspected unlawful activity involved 20 Adventist Health System hospitals including Park Ridge Health in North Carolina where Randolph was Chief Financial Officer when a lawsuit was filed against AHS by whistleblowers and federal investigators. The hospitals were accused of paying doctors inflated salaries and bonuses in exchange for patient referrals for expensive tests and procedures at AHS facilities.

AHS defended Randolph in comments to the Kansas City Star, saying that he had contributed significantly to reforms that had been instituted after the settlement. Melanie Lawhorn, a spokeswoman at the AHS corporate office called Randolph “a man of integrity and an extremely valued leader within Adventist Health System. Our organization believes he has and will continue to have a tremendous and positive impact on Shawnee Mission Health.”

The newspaper states that court documents show Randolph was aware that AHS was running an illegal scheme but neglected to report it to the federal government because the money that would need to be paid back would be “insane.” The lawsuit claims Randolph asked employees to cover the scheme up and “lose” internal documents.


I could go on. . . .

It is a Sisyphean task to try to “fix” Adventism. It can’t be done, in my opinion.

As Tennessee Ernie Ford sang in 1956,

…with one fist of iron,
and the other of steel,
if the right one don’t getcha,
then the left one will…

And as Kris Kristofferson sang,

…it’s over,
nobody wins…

  1. Evil exists: TRUE
  2. God is benevolent: TRUE
  3. God is omnipotent: TRUE
I will bring the blind by a way that they knew not; I will lead them in paths that they have not known: I will make darkness light before them, and crooked things straight.

These things will I do unto them, and not forsake them.


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He has made me glad!

Dr. Swope likens the three offerings/feasts to three classes of disciples.
But I have heard it explained this way:

-winnowed barley, the overcomers, those participating in the first resurrection, (‘the out-resurrection from the dead’ as Paul calls it in Phil 3:11), the one he is ‘striving to attain’, this ‘upward call of God’ is not about salvation but a position of authority in the coming kingdom (judgment given to them, reigning with Christ (‘receiving the crown of life’), or being a priest of God) as inheriting the kingdom or being a joint-heir with Christ implies a degree of ownership.

-threshed (pounded) wheat, the rest of the believers, will not be given immortality at the first resurrection but later after period of correction under overcomers (their kinsmen-redeemers under Christ).

-crushed grapes/olives, unbelievers (every knee will eventually bow and confess Jesus as Lord), later still (last crops harvested) but nevertheless necessary to complete the Lord’s table, longer time of chastisement/correction under kinsmen-redeemers, won’t be pretty (weeping and gnashing of teeth) but ultimately restorative.

Adventism is correct in saying there will be a judgment of believers at the end of this age based on our works (they call it the IJ). The problem is we think everything is about our own salvation; we can’t seem to look past that. But the issue in the IJ is NOT salvation (which is given by grace through faith) but to choose the overcomers through history who will take part in the first resurrection. They will have ‘the mind of Christ’ and thus be rewarded by helping bring the rest of humanity back to God in the coming age(s).

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  1. Evil exists: TRUE
  2. God is benevolent: TRUE
  3. God is omnipotent: TRUE


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Know what? That’s close enough for me! And you might be centered right over the target more than I (like to imagine I am).

Still working all this out internally, but your interpretation (maybe?) gets me to the same place as mine, and is elegant, if countercultural. Groovy! (I seem to have some Enneagram Eight traits—just an Old Hippy who don’t know what to do. :slight_smile: )

And I think one of my visionary friends, who, like me, believes in universal reconciliation, might really like your take. I’ve never been able to explain my “take” in a way that makes sense to anyone else, but he might like yours. He’s an engineer and likes things laid out logically, if not Theologically Correctly, according to the PTB.

And, in fact, fact several posts I’ve read from others today seem to be closing in on this thing, if I’m not mistaken.

(My ex-hubbie’s sermon this coming week is titled “The Convergence.” Not really sure where he’s going with it yet.)

Going to run what you said about the Feasts past another visionary friend who observes the Feasts, but vehemently doesn’t believe in universal reconciliation (or fairies). And maybe you don’t either?

May be a while before I return. Interesting—thanks!

Happy New Moon/New Beginnings! :new_moon: :smile:

(I try so hard to walk away from this place…your fault for hoovering me back in—got to blame someone. LOL).

Yes, yes, yes!!! Totally with you here!

If we can think up Restorative Justice, and Truth and Reconciliation, do we imagine God didn’t think of it before us?

How absurd!


I attended this lecture in 2015–so inspiring!


Somewhere I have a picture of my friend Ellen and me on either side of this fine woman.