Reviewing the Review: End Time edition


(system) #1

December 10, 2009 - Vol. 186, No. 34

REVIEWS The INBOX was particularly interesting: there was thoughtful discussion, a mistake in reporting was corrected, and there was even a letter from a Jehovah’s Witness.

In his editorial, STANDING UP FOR US, Mark A. Kellner directed readers to www.sdaforme.com, a website created to answer “many [Adventist] dissenters’ claims”, and in GOD WITH US, Stephen Chavez reminded readers that “the great tragedy of the Christmas season is that it doesn’t last longer than it takes to take down the tree and put away the ornaments”.

WORLD NEWS & PERSPECTIVES Tragedy is ever-present. Kirsten Wolcott, a student missionary was murdered, and mudslides killed thirty Adventists in El Salvador and dozens of church members in Northern Tanzania. 25 YEARS LALTER, LLUMC SURGEON BAILEY REFLECTS ON THE “BABY FAE” CASE, and every Atlantic Union College nursing student passed the 2009 nurses’ licensing exam, earning the RN program a ranking of NUMBER ONE.

NAD VOTES on procedural and technical issues at its year-end session, and the REVIEW STAFF has scholars in residence.

The cover feature, NOT JUSTANOTHER BRICK IN THE WALL by Gerald A. Klingbeil, discussed Christian theology in an essay chronicling the history of church architecture and its reflection of Christian theology.

In THE EUTYCHUS SYNDROME, Ken Hall challenges worship service participants to listen actively, and provides a strategy for doing it. Dr. Wes Youngberg provides his first installment of strategies for SURVIVING THE HOLIDAYS, and Carolyn Huffstickler, author of THE BOXES, managed to get “five China barrels full of coats, long underwear, and socks” to needy folks in Eastern Europe, thanks to persistence, prayer, and the generosity of Northwestern and KLM Airlines.

WITH by Valerie N. Phillips is a gentle piece that celebrates friendship and community, and A BETTER OFFER by Gina Wahlen is a reminder that even prayerful wishes do not always come true. God may have something better in mind.

COMMENTS Clifford Goldstein’s THIS IS THE END, MY FRIEND, provides information about the Second Law of Thermodynamics and scientific theorizing about the end of the universe. However, when Cliff criticizes scientific theorizing as proceeding “from an apparent a priori commitment to atheistic materialism”, he has muddled up science with religion and scientific theory with religious certainty. This is something that Ben Clausen from the Geoscience Institute refuses to do. (1)

GOD’S END-TIME REMNANT: WHAT ARE THE PRACTICAL IMPLICAITONS OF THIS THEOLOGICAL CONCEPT? Angel Manuel Rodriguez provides a chart that answers that question clearly and definitely. He also provides the following commentary.

“God has a people in figurative Babylon, and it is our mission to call them out to be part of God’s end-time eschatological remnant (Rev.18:4). These are sincere Christians who serve the Lord in different Christian denominations and even among world religions. They are part of the church of Christ. At the present time they are not a visible group; that is to say, they do not possess the characteristics of the remnant, but it is God’s plan to bring them out of their invisibility through the mission of His remnant people. We can, then, suggest that the fullness of the church of Christ is constituted by a visible, historical remnant people who have specific characteristics, and also by loyal believers who are still in Babylon, in exile. They need to hear the message of the remnant in order to reaffirm their commitment to biblical truth and not be deceived by the dragon and its allies.”

According to Rodriguez, while today “there is salvation outside the remnant”, the final remnant will all be Seventh-day Adventists. (This man is Director of the Biblical Research Institute of MY CHURCH?) Angel, what about Mathew 25: 31-36?

(1) December 2009 Ron Numbers Lectures at LLU on the Adventist Origins of Scientific Creationism Reported by Matthew Burdette

I tried to take down some notes from Ben Clausen, but was sitting in the back of the auditorium, and he was really difficult to hear (and follow) because his mic was not close enough to his mouth, and the speakers weren't loud enough. He prepared a short response with four main points, which are as follows:

1. What can we learn about scientific research? 2. What can we learn about revelation? 3. Apologetics and attitudes 4. How the above three relate.

I was truly impressed with his willingness to admit ignorance. He said, in essence, that the biblical and scientific evidence are at odds with one another, and that the best he could do was to acknowledge both and hope for some reconciliation down the road.


This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at http://spectrummagazine.org/node/2050