Presidential Plagiarism Accusations Surface at WAU


And the answer is, that was the Church then. Pre-Reformation. Pre-proliferation-of-denominations.

That you bring this up, @vandieman, in the same breath of ultra-support for EGW, shows confusion about the Scriptures. To bring in the Catholic Church (upper case) at all, as you know in this denomination, adds another layer of suspicion and tension about the canon and scripture authority.

I’m surprised that you make EGW equal to the Scriptures and utterly dismiss her own view and statement that “she was a lesser light” to point to the Scriptures, the “greater light.”

Your lifting EGW above the scriptures for applications now, is scary and troubling. That you place her above the Bible (for whatever reasons) baffles me and has me thinking that to be above the Biblical Scripture itself is flirting with blasphemy. Help me understand (without referring to the Catholic Church).

(jeremy) #65

i’m not saying to throw out the NT, or the OT…after-all, the bible writers are believed to have been inspired, and we know that the entire bible is endorsed by egw, who is the most recent case of inspiration…i’m simply saying that to use this collection of inspired writings to exclude other inspired writings, particularly egw, as the sola scriptura approach effectively does, doesn’t make sense…it leaves us with a crippled view of what god wants for us…

obviously egw is too voluminous for us to include everything she wrote in some kind of general canon that includes the known bible writers…but we can avail ourselves of all examples of inspiration in the form they exist now…i think we can decide, as our church has done, that the most legitimate interpretations can only be those that intersect all the inspired writers, including egw…

this is in fact why i feel desmond ford is so dangerous…to believe him, not only do we have to downplay much of paul, and other biblical books, like the gospel books and james, not to mention essentially all of the OT, where not only is the sanctuary painstakingly taught, but works and obedience are everywhere enjoined, but we literally have to throw out egw, which is just what not a few of his followers have done…ford says there’s no IJ, egw says there is an IJ…ford says sanctification has nothing to do with our salvation, egw and many biblical texts say it does…people have a clear choice to make…i don’t think we can accept both ford and egw…

your point that the longest books of paul, but also of peter and john, are ordered first, and the shorter ones last, just shows how superficial the whole canonization process was…why couldn’t those catholic fathers at least have done their homework, and arranged things in chronological order (at least they placed the gospels first and Revelation last)…i was just reading that one of luther’s reasons for referring to the papacy as antichrist was the common practice of church officials of keeping boys for their sexual pleasure…it makes today’s charges against various cardinals seem almost mild in comparison…the medieval catholic church was altogether corrupt…we can’t base our position on inspiration on what they included or excluded in their canon, which we know was really designed to protect their social standing:

(jeremy) #66

by the 16th century, there was an evident and centuries old history of persecution between the sea beast of Rev 13 and god’s true church, who were in the mountains, the valleys, and wherever they could hide from persecution and death…the catholic church claims provenance from the apostle peter…all the atrocities done against god’s true faithful are within its domain of responsibility, as is its claim to have canonized the bible, which we hold as sacred…

this lesser light statement isn’t dispositive…paul said he was the least of the apostles, 1 Cor 15:19, but still consigned to satan people who disagreed with him, eg., 1 Tim 1:20…and he certainly stood up to apostles that some people may have considered more legitimate than him, Gal 2:11-14…what egw really thought of her writings can be seen in the following:

“In ancient times God spoke to men by the mouth of prophets and apostles. In these days He speaks to them by the testimonies of His Spirit. There was never a time when God instructed His people more earnestly than He instructs them now concerning His will and the course that He would have them pursue.” 5T:661.

this is certainly claiming a stronger signet from god than any of the bible prophets and apostles claimed…egw is certainly saying that her messages are paramount…

(jeremy) #67

i think both sources are reliable, and that a legitimate interpretation must intersect both…

(Steve Mga) #68

CF –
The REASON Paul consigned certain persons to Satan, was so Satan would
torture them, they come to their senses of the Errors of Their Way, and
return to Godly behavior, and a renewed connection with Christ.

The Book of Proverbs describes the hard way, and the tortures of those
who are NOT “Wise” – have a relationship with God.

Paul stood up to at least one other apostle, Peter, because he was inconsistent
with what God had revealed to him when “social pressure” was applied.
Paul stated that “being a Jew in the flesh” amounted to nothing. It was the Heart,
Mind, and Soul that made one a “child of the promise”, child of Abraham, and
Abraham became the “father of many nations” through the preaching of Paul, and
others. Following the Deeds of the Law did not save the Jews and WOULD NOT
save the Gentiles. It was recognizing one was a Son of God, and developing
behaviors reflecting that they were their Father’s Sons and Daughters.

We have to understand that the Gentile world NEVER thought of their god as
loving, unselfish. Their gods created humans to WORK for them, to serve them,
and if they DID NOT brought all types of trouble to them. It was a FEAR, Frightful
relationship the Gentiles had with their gods.
The Paul presents this NEW God. Entirely different from the ones in their temples,
and who they have been frightened all their lives. It is easy to understand the FEAR
of those who worshiped Diana, that some of the community would be causing her
wrath to come upon them. It was MORE than just selling images of her!!!


These two quotes are quite interesting. While Paul said he was the chief of sinners and the least of apostles, she tells her readers to follow her testimonies “or else.” Then brings God’s endorsement of her message and its urgency.

Do you ever think that she felt her messages were paramount because of her own needing to have a voice, control of the corporate message, and to sell the Red Books? Just wondering.

Also, it seems that maybe an issue then was also “unity,” something the Red Books ensured if God was the Almighty Voice insisting that everyone obey Ellen and follow every message in her books in every area of belief and lifestyle.

I had never thought of EGW as having a higher calling than Paul, or as being a Greater Light than any other writer/prophet/author/messenger of the Scriptures. To me that would be close to blasphemy, personally. It’s quite a startling thought.

Is it your belief that holding EGW in higher esteem above the Scriptures and as having the authority to establish doctrine one of the church’s fundamental beliefs?

(Harry Elliott) #70

That’s an important question. Most Christians probably believe that the people in the Bible–and in heaven–actually spoke in “thee"s and” thou"s. And that God dictated the Bible as a complete book, word-for-word, or at least thought-for-thought.

In fact, for the fist few years, Ellen White’s visionary angels spoke ungrammatical Jacobean English. (Like, “Hark ye. List ye.” Those are plural pronouns, even though she was alone.

It’s things like that that show the thoughtful that she wasn’t for real. In her first description of her first vision, there were no tablets in the ark in heaven. Then Joseph Bates ran into a 7th Day Baptist and she added the Decalogue with the glowing 4th commandment. She wrote that she somehow saw that the pope changed the sabbath, but she didn’t see to know which pope or how or when.

Paul’s message of Galatians 3, etc., persuaded Gentile Christians that the entire law had been superseded by the Spirit, so the Gentile half of the church never began to "esteem one day above another. Centuries later, the Catholics morphed their Lord’s Day into Sunday Sabbath and began to claim that they had been keeping it on Sunday since the beginning. There are extant letters cautioning first century Christians not to Judaize by refraining from labor on the Lord’s Day.

I found a ton of primary source pertinent primary material on this subject inthe endnotes in Sam Bacchiocchi’s From Sabbath to Sunday. (Ironically, he included enough sources to disabuse me of some of his most persuasive conclusions.):slightly_smiling_face:

(jeremy) #71

well, this was paul’s MO, as well, wasn’t it…first he went on a self pity trip with the corinthians before dropping hints of the superiority of his visions, insisting on his equality with “the very chiefest apostles”, 2 Cor 11-12:12, and trying to make them feel guilty for questioning his inspiration, 2 Cor 13:1-3…

then, of course, and in classic larger than life form, he consigned to satan anyone who disagreed with him…we see this tendency first when he ordered the corinthians to consign to satan someone involved in incest, 1Cor 5:5; then we see him consign to satan someone named hymenaeus, merely for making shipwreck of his faith, as he, paul, saw it, 1Tim 1:19-21; and then he cursed alexander the coppersmith, whom he imagined did him “much evil”, 2Tim 4:14…so much for turning the other cheek…

but wait…jesus himself told his disciples to shake the dust off their feet against anyone who wouldn’t receive them, promising retribution in a future judgement more severe than what sodom and gomorrah saw, Matt 10:14-15…some time later he cursed chorazin, bethsaida and capernaum (which he consigned to hell) with a similar future, Matt 11: 20-25…there was also the case of ananias and sapphira, who were killed by the holy ghost merely for trying to save some of the profits from a land sale, of all things…and peter actually called people who questioned the imminence of christ’s coming - who may have read and believed 2 Thess 2:1-3 - scoffers of the last days, who were walking in their own evil lusts, 2 Pet 3:3-4…and john said that he and his followers were of god, while everyone else in the world, who disagreed with them, were lying in wickedness, 1Jn 5:19…

even in the OT, before the full development of the gospel, people who disagreed with noah died in a flood…the people who disagreed most strongly with moses over the golden calf were killed by the levites, who were then rewarded with the sanctuary ministry…the people who sided with korah against moses were swallowed whole when the ground opened up around them…and the kids who mocked elisha’s baldness, doubtless wording what their parents were saying at home, and as if that was such a big deal, were mauled by bears…

but let’s not forget the lake of fire, which will destroy everyone who happens to disagree with god, when all is said and done…and this isn’t just the fate of those who happen to be alive at that time…but the dead will be raised to life for the express purpose of dying once more, and this time the most horrible of deaths imaginable…

i just don’t see that religion, coming through inspired persons, is a democracy…people either believe these persons, and are saved, or they disbelieve them, and die now or later…this is something of an abrupt observation, but everything distills to it eventually…and i would say that egw is certainly in this mold…ironically, i think we can see this as one more evidence of her authenticity…

i think her course can look like this, no question…but in reading her diaries and personal letters, it is possible to see that much of her ministry was something she naturally shrank from, and even begged to be relieved from…there certainly was a strong side of her that would have preferred to be a stay at home wife and mother, living her life in blissful obscurity in a hidden country side somewhere…i do have to say that i’ve read so much from the pen of egw, and over so many yrs, i really can’t see anything nefarious in her life, at all…i see the flaws and the weak points of character…i see the errors in judgement…but i also see and feel the astounding gift she had, and the enormous grasp on spiritual reality that guided everything, yes everything, she did…i have yet to see anything remotely approaching the power in egw…

whatever our FB’s are - and let’s face it, they’re constantly being refined and expanded - the equality of egw with the bible is a forgone conclusion etched in stone…our church has historically used her gift to shore up our identity as the remnant church of Rev 12:17…i see any effort to denature her standing in our church as illegitimate, and every egw believer i know sees it in the same way…because of the expanding nature of truth over time, and because she is the most recent case of inspiration, i think we have to see egw’s ministry as more relevant than anything happening 2,000 yrs ago, and longer…i think this is just common sense…and as i’ve said before, the jews who clung to their bibles while rejecting the ministry of john the baptist didn’t stop there…their devotion to their bible led them to reject god himself…

in my reading of Great Controversy, which i fully believe is as inspired as the bible, and more relevant, the people calling for the death penalty against seventh-day adventists will all be thinking they’re on god’s side…no-one won’t be using scripture to shore up their course…delusion will be so complete, everyone will fully believe they’re right, when of course, the vast majority will be horribly wrong…this is just the nature of the battle of truth against error…everyone believes they’re right…

(George Tichy) #72

Oh Jeremy, what a dramatic statement. I only wonder how many people will actually be moved emotionally by it.

Seriously? “Believing these persons” will lead to salvation? Now it’s “salvation by believing these persons?” This is really news to me… :roll_eyes:

(jeremy) #73

who’s trying to move anyone emotionally…facts are facts…leaving aside egw, there is never a case in the bible where people disregard the words of inspired persons - patriarchs or prophets or apostles or christ himself - and move on to enjoy a neutral life unaffected by that disregard…it’s always the case that people who obey prosper, and people who disobey die prematurely, or will die in the lake of fire later…as i’ve said, this is a bit of an abrupt footnote to keep in mind when reading the writings of these inspired persons…

the thing is, believing inspired persons leads to obedience to their words, which leads to actions that lead to being saved from something…whether we’re talking events in OT narratives or the wrath of god at the end of the world highlighted in paul, it’s all the same motif…

(George Tichy) #74

WOW!.. :roll_eyes: :roll_eyes: :roll_eyes:


It’s troubling that these Presidential plagiarism claims spur more argument about whether Ellen White plagiarized than they do conversation involving perspectives that might be helpful to a struggling University.

What is going to benefit students more, right now?

Bickering over EGW’s penchant for “borrowing”? Or underscoring support for the University’s stakeholders by calling (with the same vigor as has been dedicated to the bickering) for transparency and honesty from WAU’s board of directors.

There are hundreds of students who rely on this process being handled with the utmost professionalism and with their best interests prioritized.

(jeremy) #76

that’s right, george…in the bible, people do something in order to be saved…they board the ark to escape the flood…they flee the city in order to escape fire and brimstone…they hang a scarlet thread out their window to escape being killed…they store grain in national warehouses to escape famine…and they work out their own salvation with fear and trembling, Phil 2:12; they give the more earnest heed to inspired messages so they don’t forget any of the particulars, Heb 2:1; they fear, lest they fail to meet the conditions attached to promises of salvation, Heb 4:1; they deny ungodliness and worldly lusts, and live soberly and carefully for the rest of their lives in this world, Titus 2:12; and they resist the devil so that he flees from them, James 4:7…

they don’t just sit there and let go and let god…they don’t minimize what god has given them to do by saying jesus did it all, and there’s nothing for them to do…they’re not passive zombies…they overcome like jesus overcame, and because they actually do overcome, they actually do sit with him on his throne, Rev 3:21…they’re “zealous of good works”, Titus 2:14…they not only name the name of christ, but they “depart from iniquity”, 2 Tim 2:19…

it’s interesting that an authority outside of the church is seen as being more reliable and trustworthy than something coming from NAD or the GC, at least by some…this story sounds almost like the lead up to ratsara’s resignation from SID - which also involved the charge of academic plagiarism - in which the GC apparently still believes in him, and in which nothing since seems to have been actually proven one way or the other…

(Tim Teichman) #77

Yea, I know. I started to respond, but then, just couldn’t do it.

(Tim Teichman) #78

Why is that?

I don’t think anyone here knows. We don’t run the place.

Oh and it should be. But we’re not part of that process here on Spectrum. We’d of course love to see how they handle it (and likely find a way to note how they didn’t do it professionally.)

(George Tichy) #79

I am not going there anymore, Tim. Not worth the time. Those ideas are kind of disturbing. They sound so backwards…

(Steve Mga) #80

In #7, S. Paceman reported the WAU President salary was $105,000 plus some
I recall several years ago on Spectrum that conversation about Presidents of
Adventist hospitals, such as Florida Hospital was in the $100 - 125,000 range.
And that was considered by some posters on Spectrum as absolutely OBSCENE!
Thought THEY should be paid the same salary as Pastors.

Apparently the WAU President salary we don’t blink an eye at!!
Does anyone know what the Salaries are for Presidents of our other Universities?
Andrews, Southern, Union, LLU, LSU, WallaWalla, PUC?

(Cfowler) #81

Steve, the salaries that were being discussed were far in excess of 100-125,000 range. More like upper 6 figures into 1-2+ million. I’m not commenting on the salaries, per se…just pointing out that it wasn’t anywhere near 100-125,000.

Here are the 2012 salaries…


Along the line of curiosity, what are the salaries for NAD President and for GC president?

(Steve Mga) #83

Thanks for the Correction!!