Justin Kim in Consideration for Adventist Review Editor

Justin Kim is “Ted Wilson’s choice” to lead Adventist Review Ministries, according to three sources with direct connections to the General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists. Kim currently works as the associate director of the Sabbath School and Personal Ministries Department at the GC. This marks a change for the Adventist Review succession process as the flagship church publication has almost exclusively been led by someone with previous experience on its masthead.


This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at http://spectrummagazine.org/node/12001
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i’m not seeing that Adventists Affirm has any kind of comment section…i hope Adventists Affirm isn’t an indication of what the Review is about to become…

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Is Justin Kim a Christian? We do not know the answer to that question. You can be a Seventh-day Adventist and not be a Christian. He might say that he is a Christian, but he is not entitled to call himself a Christian if he is a neo-Arian, as explained by Athanasius, the greatest exponent of the Trinity in the history of Christendom:

“Yes, surely, while all of us are and are called Christians after Christ, Marcion broached a heresy a long time since and was cast out; and those who continued with him who ejected him remained Christians; but those who followed Marcion were called Christians no more, but henceforth Marcionites. Thus Valentinus also, and Basilides, and Manichaeus, and Simon Magus, have imparted their own name to their followers; and some are accosted as Valentinians, or as Basilidians, or as Manichees, or as Simonians; and other Cataphrygians from Phrygia, and from Novatus Novatians. So too Meletius, when ejected by Peter the Bishop and Martyr, called his party no longer Christians, but Meletians, and so in consequence when Alexander of blessed memory had cast out Arius, those who remained with Alexander, remained Christians; but those who went out with Arius left the Savior’s Name to us who were with Alexander, and as to them they were hence-forward denominated Arians.” [Four Discourses Against the Arians].

Given Kim’s opposition to women’s ordination, understand this: No Seventh-day Adventist opponent of women’s ordination has ever publicly and unequivocally denounced the anti-Trinitarian heresy of Eternal Functional Subordinationism, otherwise known as Neo-Subordinationism, otherwise known as the Complementarian Doctrine of the Trinity. This anti-Trinitarian heresy is the principal component of male headship theory and is fervently believed and urged by many Seventh-day Adventist opponents of women’s ordination.

I was there at GYC’s annual convention when Stephen Bohr during the Sabbath worship service proclaimed this anti-Trinitarian heresy. And given the circumstances of that moment in time, everyone, including Kim and other GYC leaders, knew what Bohr was going to say to the young impressionable teenagers in the audience. Indeed, GYC has always been and remains an exponent of this anti-Trinitarian heresy.

As we ponder not only the persecution of Athanasius, who was banned by five different emperors, but more importantly the unfathomable suffering of Christ on the Cross, are we to shrug our shoulders while those in our faith community debase our Lord and Savior? Let us not sit and remain quiet. Let’s stand up for Jesus. Let’s be faithful stewards of His name. Let’s be biblical and truthful in our teachings about who He really is.

Kim seems like a nice guy. Arius was also a nice guy, tall, handsome, and eloquent, but not a Christian.

If Kim is unwilling to publicly and unequivocally denounce this anti-Trinitarian heresy, he should not be voted Editor of Adventist Review. We are not reaching for the stars and asking for the impossible in our plea that the new Editor of Adventist Review possess a sound understanding of the biblical doctrine of the Trinity.

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Do you still believe in a real vote? …

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Well, Justin Kim does sound like he would be TW’s chosen one for the job. At this time … it still remains to be seen.
For me … it doesn’t make much difference. I already routinely skip the AR (Adventist World) insert in our German church magazine (to protect my blood pressure). However, there are implications for the church as a whole. It would move it further to the edge, represent a remnant of a theological spectrum (excuse the pun), and further cement a hierarchical system - where all the decisions come from the top, never to be questioned.
Whether Justin Kim is a “good man” or not - I would not dare say. However, I still hope for an open, transparent selection process, based on balance and qualification rather than on opinions and uncritical allegiance to the leader.

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Alarming - TW is micromanaging the appointment. Kim has a long background with GYC. How can he be objective? I doubt he will be able to represent the spectrum of Adventist belief. Oh well, I long ago gave up reading the AR in any form. It seems like Ted is determined to drag the church as far right as possible. Then what of the rest of us? How sad after we had courageous, wise editors like Bill Johnson and Steve Chavez (assoc.). I no longer consider myself a member of the world church - only a local Adventist congregation that is tolerant of a breadth of belief. And when we are totally retired in 2 years, we don’t plan to attend an Adventist church on any regular basis.

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I don’t read Adventist Review, even though I wrote for it exactly one time.

If someone about to head it is “Ted Wilson’s choice,” that makes me as excited, ironically, as seeing Ted Wilson’s choice for a hip-hop DJ battle.

I don’t read any Adventist magazines.

I do read the ASSBSG, daily, with which, apparently, Br. Kim has been involved.

I am often in disagreement with the text, and, as well, often inspired by it.

HA

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I have literally never heard of anyone using inVerse, and it’s not for lack of trying. I glanced at the upcoming one recently in an ABC, and it looked like the exact same stuff as the standard quarterly anyway.

In fact, you know what, decide for yourself: here’s a PDF link to the first week of next quarter’s.

Multiple statements that the Earth is exactly 6,000 years old. A reminder that Catholicism is the apostate church. Sentences like “Ellen White described the link between spiritualism and antinomianism,” which is definitely how college students, or anyone, talk. Devoting an entire page to Ellen White, in addition to other lengthy quotes throughout the week. (Exactly two Bible verses are quoted in full: John 14:15 and Genesis 3:3.)

Oh, and a particularly weird comment basically begging people to read EGW’s writings: “Please read the first chapter of Patriarchs and Prophets and see if the precious truths contained in this book are not given by the Lord to protect His people from deceptions that are urged upon them just now.” Like, what.

(This is already too long, but one more quote: “He wanted to engage Eve in conversation, and he knew that the best way to get Eve to converse was to make an inaccurate statement.” The best way to get someone to talk to you is to outright lie to them? As opposed to, I don’t know, being friendly or interesting? I really hope they don’t know about online dating sites, let me tell you.)

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Thanks, @llemans:

As my previous statement, right above yours, may lightly suggest, the lesson study you describe, and to which you included a link (thanks), seems precisely the kind to which I have a strong aversion.

On this last point, above, however, they may be right, at least partially.

It’s a common technique in journalism to misstate facts, knowingly, on the expectation your interviewee will rush to correct you, thus confirming your data, or unknowingly fill it in where you had none.

I think the lesson is spot-on with its analysis of the Satanic dialogue: The devil had a very efficient plan in mind, and it involved getting Eve to eat the fruit as quickly as possible. As it turned out, no warm-up was necessary.

HA

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Well, that’s disappointing. I already barely skim AR ever since Bill Johnsson left and it became a propaganda paper. Sad.

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What is ASSBSG? Thanks.

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Thanks, @Carmen.

It’s the Adult Sabbath School Bible Study Guide, commonly called “The Lesson Quarterly,” or acronymized as ABSG.

HA

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Thanks for the link and the invite to “decide for yourself.” There is alot I could say about the lesson, but I will get to major points to keep this short. First, the blend of bible and SOP. The opening remarks are actually based almost entirely upon Patriarchs and Prophets, and when the lesson asks the student to “Read Genesis 3 from any translation” and then “write out verses 1-6” and even “rewrite them in your own words” I had to smile a bit. Most of what was said in the intro remarks are not found in Genesis 3. This is a problem I have with our lessons. There is overly heavy reliance on the SOP instead of heavy engagement in the Scriptures FIRST.

Another issue is this focus and emphasis upon “blind obedience.” It is heavy on following strictly what God said without hesitation. It does nothing to engage the reader about issues of why would you do such, or was God even expecting such. In the chapter the lesson asks them to “please read” it says “God desires from all His creatures the service of love—service that springs from an appreciation of His character. He takes no pleasure in a forced obedience; and to all He grants freedom of will, that they may render Him voluntary service.” (PP 34.3) The opening lines in the lesson seem to suggest a fear motivation rather than an appreciation of God’s character. And that makes sense because the author’s background thoughts are about the terrors of last day deceptions. (There is a better way of dealing with last day deceptions to incite loyalty to God than fear of the days, but I digress.)

As the lesson begins with a weaving of material out of SOP with the Bible, it ends with lengthy quotes from the SOP. Not surprising. The bible is little nor hardly quoted fully as you have said. It is this excessive blending without careful distinctions between Bible and SOP, working first and foremost with Scripture before incorporating the SOP that troubles me with Adventism. It leads to little clarity as to where we are really finding our ideas, and unfortunately makes the SOP the final interpreter of the Bible.

Finally, there are broad strokes statements like, “the Christian world today teaches two kindred errors that originated in Eden and form the foundation of spiritualism. The first is the postmodern idea that we can distinguish between right and wrong on our own.” There is nothing shared to back up that claim. I was not raised SDA, but was raised in a Christian home of another denomination, but I don’t ever recall being taught that I “can distinguish right and wrong” by myself. This kind of sweeping accusation is the fruit of an unhealthy understanding of the remnant. It leads to a holier than thou position and thus blunts witness to our fellow brothers and sister in Christ who believe a little differently than us.

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Just to clarify, the Adult Bible SS Study Guide is not edited by Kim. It is actually run outside the entire Sabbath School Personal Ministries department and it is edited by Cliff Goldstein.

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Agree wholeheartedly. Nice synopsis. I grieve at all the missed opportunities to teach.

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The SDA church puts forth a lot of broad stroke statements regarding other Christians. Most of them are terribly off base, or might apply to only a minority of Christians.

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sure do…i’ve seen votes at several Annual Councils, especially lately, that didn’t go TW’s way, and there was nothing he could do about it…if Justin Kim doesn’t appeal to Council members outside of TW’s immediate sphere of influence, he won’t get the nod…

on the whole, i’m not really sure i get a good feeling about Justin Kim, but i do know that i think racial diversity at the head of our main church publication is a good thing…assuming he manages to get a majority of votes by GC ExCom next month, i tend to think he should be given time to make his intentions clear for this reason alone…

but we’ll all know soon enough whether Kim’s selection was a disaster, or a good thing, assuming he is nominated…i’m not worried…

It’s this sort of stuff that confirms my decision to walk away from adventism, and makes me regret ever having exposed my children to it.

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It’s awful!

The very first sentence is:
“We begin our study in Genesis 3, a passage which describes the deceptive methods Satan has used successfully in the course of human history.”

Which is abjectly wrong. Satan doesn’t appear in Genesis.

The serpent who spoke to Eve is rather oddly described as, “The serpent was more cunning than any beast of the field Yahweh had made.”

So, a smart animal that Yahweh didn’t create? It does seem an odd statement!

Not the Christian devil. Not the Jewish haś·śā·ṭān, the adversary in the heavenly court. Nope. A serpent. One of many depicted in the bible and in many writings from the time.

And then:
“Satan told Eve two related lies. The first was that if she disobeyed God’s explicit commandment, she would not die. The second was that if she ate the fruit, she would not need to depend on God to distinguish between good and evil, because she would be like God, and her own wisdom would enable her to make that distinction.”

Actually, based on the text, the serpent didn’t lie to Eve at all. Here are parts of the text that show as much:


And commanded Yahweh to the man, saying of every tree of the garden you may freely eat, but from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.

And said the serpent to the woman, you will not surely die! For Yahweh knows that in the day that you eat of it, then your eyes will be opened and you will be like Yahweh, knowing good and evil.

And then that is exactly what happened!

So when the woman saw that it was good, and pleasant, and desirable, she then took of it’s fruit and ate. And she gave also fruit to the man beside her and he ate.

And their eyes were opened, and they saw that they were naked…

And Yahweh said, who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree I commanded you to not eat from?

And Yahweh said, behold mankind has become like one of Us, knowing good and evil.


The snake didn’t lie. Yahweh’s threat that in the day they ate whey would die didn’t happen.

Instead, their eyes were opened and they became like the gods, knowing the difference between good and evil, and then Yahweh rewarded them, in a sense:

“The man named the woman Eve (“the living”) because she was to become the mother of all the living.”


While Christians typically read Genesis 3 as “The Fall”, there is another compelling way to read it. Jews commonly read the story of Adam and Eve as the story of humanity growing up:

First humans are naked and oblivious, and given rules to follow, not understanding why. Like toddlers. Then they break the rules and their eyes are opened. They realize they’re naked. They understand the difference between good and evil. They feel shame. But they are still lovingly taken care of by God, clothed, given tasks, and sent away from the nursery to start their own family - indeed, to kick off humanity.

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Thank you for the clarification, @webEd.

HA