Gil Valentine on Robert Pierson—Adventist Voices

In the first of a three-part series for the Adventist Voices podcast, historian Gilbert Valentine focuses his analysis on the main characters in Ostriches and Canaries: Coping with Change in Adventism, 1966-1979. For this conversation, Valentine explores the motivations and methods of Robert Pierson, General Conference president from 1966–79.


This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at http://spectrummagazine.org/node/11976
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I am now reading Gil Valentine’s book, just finished ch. 7. I am appalled, almost enraged learning what was going on at Andrews University in the years that I was a Theology student (1969-1972, in Brazil)! I can’t believe the ongoing anti-intellectualism forced by Pierson! The intellectual manipulation and attacks on intellectual freedom - it’s all just outrageous.

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I take it you do not believe in EGW. because this article would completely be against what she has written in her works.

Did you ever examine the DOCUMENTATION presented by Steve Daily in his last book, “Ellen G. White: a Psychobiography”?
This is a Y/N question, no comment expected.

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Thank you for recommending the book. I just read the Kindle edition. It was quite a lesson in SDA history. Well, at least ‘holy kissing’ is no longer a thing in the church.

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And Gil Valentine’s book is a must read. I am almost done with it. Nothing but ASTONISHING, and of course embarrassing for a “remnant church!” . The Pierson era is full of the most shameful events.

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That book looks interesting as well. I’ll look up the article on it that I saw on this site.

Have you read or heard anyrhing relating to the modern SDA church officially recognizing and admitting some of the problematic history from the early SDA church? The EGW estate website addresses some issues in a question and answer section but there are still issues unaddressed.

Of course we are all supposed to worship Jesus Christ and follow His example, not worship the messengers. I guess it’s no surprise that some in the church have made an idol out of EGW, for profit, power or whatever reason.

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McAdams’ book that will be coming up by the end of this year may be the last literature about Adventism that will ever examine, just because I’ve never read anything from that author. I need no further info to confirm that I had enough of Adventism. My youth was so deeply rooted in it, my education so much shaped by it - only to learn later on that, like millions of other members, I have been just duped by this Denomination. Who needs that anyway?

Adventism? Never again! Dupe me once, shame on you; dupe me twice… :wink:

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I wasn’t raised Adventist, but I’ve heard some stories about severe and irrational restrictions from likely well meaning people who didn’t understand that they were practicing a form of EGW worship.
I just downloaded the book ‘Where are we headed? Adventism after San Antonio.’

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The journey backwards to 1844 started in July 2010 when Ted Wilson was “elected” GC Prez in 90 seconds. In 2015 it was just the continuation of the same, and then came 2022… No hope left.

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The only reason to go backwards that I see is to address puzzling issues that influenced the church including that some have made an idol out of EGW. Saint worship is part of the Catholic religion. The prophets in the Bible did certain things that aren’t held up as an example for followers of Christ- such as Samson and his relationship with prostitutes.

This has always been, and still is, the central problem in Adventism. Just imagine how many theological problems could have been avoided if Adventism relied only on the Bible for doctrinal issues. But, unfortunately, everything has to be filtered through EGW’s views, and her word is always the last word, no matter what the Bible could possibly say. Classic example: the the 1844/IJ issue, that is clearly refuted in the book of Hebrews. And also, Eph. 1:20, Col. 3:1, Acts 7:55,56.

But I am afraid that Adventism is incorrigible because the main package sold to the public is based on EGW as being a true prophet of the last days. And, of course, the idea of “remnant church” does not help either.

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I have read some of Dr. Kellogg’s exit interview from the SDA church so I see more now how long these issues concerning EGW have been part of the church. Though I don’t agree with some of his health ideas, he seemed rational and sincere. He didn’t seem to be the type that was greedy or prone to lying.

There is no doubt that many of EGW’'s writings have been misapplied and misused to the harm of people in and outside the church. I pray to God that He will bring truth and healing to this matter so the knowledge of His love and truth won’t be hindered.

Maybe its like if someone inherited their grandparents house with all the furnishings. You might want to keep everything but that doesn’t mean you want to use everything. You don’t need a laundry mangle when there are washing machines. EGW’s information on wigs, wasp waists, bicycles and other such things have no use to me other than a history lesson. Basic principles such as the importance of focusing on Jesus, reading the bible and being healthy are timeless. Thankfully with the internet we all have access to present time sermons and articles that might not be by someone labeled as a prophet but are still inspired by God.

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