It’s the “Fake News” ploy picked up from The Donald. It works with folks who are easily led but not with most of us spectrumites.
For decades, some Protestants have been pitching the Father (i.e. the Ten Commandments) against the Son (just two love God and love your neighbor) as though they were in some completely different category. The principles of the two spoken by Jesus are the spirit of the Ten Commandments revealed.
I am curious why you say these commandments of Jesus are just two, when they encompass all the ten? The ten might be written out in the letter, the two are the ten written on the heart.
Why not take and put this proposal into action. The majority of church members, supporting leadership did similar to us in the 1980’s when we had to warn about Ford’s apostasy inroads, and the NLP dangers, and the GC taking brethren to court using tithe funds. We were vilified and character was assassinated wholesale, and members scarcely blinked an eye - even supported by those who left the church for the world in a few short years after that.
So why not? Just kidding, I don’t believe harmony can be forced by compliance. Only the true willingness to be one with Jesus, and a love for His truth will accomplish that goal.
"I don’t believe harmony can be forced by compliance. Only the true willingness to be one with Jesus, and a love for His truth will accomplish that goal."
Then there will be no peace within the SDA church. I don’t see much evidence that “Jesus and a love for His truth” exists corporately.
I am rather shocked at your response that you feel it is fair for the majority to decide for the minority on an issue that is not tied to church doctrine or its fundamental beliefs. Does this mean you reject the scholarship of the church who have studied long and hard if find nothing unbiblical about WQ as pastors. (Ordination is a Catholic practice.) Women and children have been the most persecuted and abused citizens of the world and I question the morality of those groups who still practice it. I Know missionaries who have lived in these countries and the violance that often erupts against women. Our church in these areas are following the practice of Islam in the attitudes of some toward women. That is the culture. You talk about hampering evangelism–what about the west. Who will join a church with such an attitude toward women. This is a moral issue for me and many others. We need to be open-minded. Not that it matters, but it is the monies of the west that have allowed evangelism to grow in these countries. It’s taxation without representation. I can’t imagine Christ holding such views today. It is like the slavery issue that was not opposed in the NT but now is seen in its evil. We are to become more compassionate in the last days and not less. If there was one character of Christ that should b e followed it was to treat all as equal children of God and not to keep them from spreading the Gospel. That is my belief, and I believe it is biblical–Christ is the center of the Word, not cultural practices. We fail to study the principles of the Bible and focus on specifics that change. We are not saved by such things, only by Christ–not even doctrines save us but it is Him alone. Doctrines tell us what God is like–a frame around a picture and not the picture itself. God is love.
The practical answer to this would have been to let each division decide for itself and what works for their evangelism. Anything else is unfair. It reminds me of the early south when we were forced to have separate churches because of the animosity of the white race. We were forced to tolerate their prejudices and hope that conversion would change them.
How can we drop a practice/issue that is sinful and expect to be blessed?
The majority is always right?
Because the majority vote/decide to subjugate others it is right?
A “human” vote is God’s official word?
Calling a brother or sister every time he or she speaks a reprimanded reprobate brings unity?
Jesus, chairing a meeting of the Exec Committee, would address his children every time they addressed Him, “The Reprimanded Loren” will now speak?
Morality is second to a vote of humanity? (What if the GC voted to change the Sabbath?)
Sidelining God’s called deserves to be reprimanded? If so, I hope most of the Executive Committee proudly wear buttons with “Called and Reprimanded for It” to the executive meeting and wear it as a badge of honor.
Your “get-with-the-wishes-of-the-GC-or-get-out” attitude indicates your “company man” viewpoint of church “rules.” Good luck with that. God’s calling is superior to any vote of mere man.
We should operate at the lowest common denominator of culture?
Matthew 20 provides clear counsel from our Lord: common human practice is to use power and position to overpower (Lord it over) others. It is demonstrably evidenced in self-ascendant behavior that leads to dominance of others. This was Lucifer’s sin against God: “I will ascend…”. Unfortunately we see coercive behavior emerging in SDA Church organizational behavior. The AC in 2017 challenged the GC executive committee to obey policy or lose both voice and vote on committee deliberations. This attempted incursion is interesting in that the 1901 re-organization of the church initiated a process whereby leaders (administrators) are held accountable to the executive committee–not the other way around. It also reveals a shift away from a governance process by the people (executive committee and session) to a hierarchical model that has adopted a CEO model tempered by the US presidential model where terminal authority is assumed to preside in the apex leader. This is revealed in the relatively recent adoption or assumption of a new title for our GC president who is now referred to as the “President of the Word Church of Seventh-day Adventists” as noted on the GC web site and our flagship journals. The official title (unless formally changed without my knowledge). “President of the General Conference of SDA” limits his authority to the GC context and requires an influence form of leadership beyond the boundaries. The move to a hierarchical model initiates a parallel move toward command and control behavior that invariably violates the banishment of coercive behavior toward those “beneath them” (see Acts of the Apostles p 12 EG White).
As such, the repeated reprimands are also a repetitive reminder of the command authority of the executive leaders. This gradually and pervasively hammers away at the relational bonds that have held us together as a people–voluntary cooperation, commitment to common mission, and trust of one another–all of which are becoming rare.
“How can we drop a practice/issue that is sinful and expect to be blessed?”
I am not understanding you here. Are you saying that the reverse is true and that by ADOPTING sinful practices that you should expect to be blessed?
"We should operate at the lowest common denominator of culture?"
You have stated it so clearly, harppa…I can’t imagine that this God’s will for any of us but yet this seems to be the modus operandi that the Adventist church has fallen into.
That, unfortunately is the lot of Laodicea, to be half-hearted and at odds with God in some respects in the majority of its members, all the while without realizing it.
We are at some quandary, because while harmony cannot be forced by compliance, neither can the true willingness to be one with Jesus that has a love for His truth.
I would welcome your suggestions of how that real love for Jesus and His truth can be achieved, because while we are fulfilling the conditions of the prophecy about Laodicea; we also have beautiful promises that the final church will have overcomers, who are ready to see Jesus come in the clouds of glory.
I sense a deep hurt because of the past racial prejudices that pervaded where you are coming from. I am sorry that these racial divides happened then, and still do in some places. I have listened to the excuses and reasons some women in Islamic countries have given why they believe in sex-slaves is a good practice. I hear the group IS she was referring to is now largely gone. But these are but a small portion of the actual number around the world which still has this problem. And forgive me, I haven’t room here to address all the world’s problems.
I wish I could wave a magic wand or similar, but then I also must, whether I like it or not, recognize that God could knock all these injustices on the head, yet for many reasons, doesn’t. One major reason is if we had no problems in this world, how many of us would be seeking a better country? we would be too satisfied with what we have here. We are the problem in this, and not God. He doesn’t intervene because of us.
Your closing thoughts has been some thought-provoking interest to me. How could those whites be Christian, yet treat others of a different skin color so badly. I wish I could find the answer so easy to give, for prejudice is not easily explainable. It would be on a par with trying to explain the reason for sin. Nothing and anything would be adequate so as to make it justifiable.
Perhaps we have all contributed to it by our upbringing and use of terms. For example, why do we use the term “race” for people of a different skin color? This so called color is little more than different levels of melanin. In fact, except for the albino situation, we all have color from pink to very dark brown. All have descended from Adam and Eve, which, careful thought would place as a middle-eastern brown or perhaps even a darker brown, or perhaps a slightly lighter brown. They certainly would not have been what we falsely call “white” which is really pink.
Regarding our use of race, we are all the one race, all the human race, only we vary in features that have been selected through perhaps prejudice of the past generations, and a feature on light skin color being subject to burning in some sun-scorched climates, and dark skin color being unable to adequately absorb vitamin D in colder climates.
I agree wholeheartedly with your observations that “… my belief [is], and I believe it is biblical–Christ is the center of the Word, not cultural practices.” If only we all had such an understanding.
having the ‘privilege’ to deal with a mother-in-law, WHO in their right mind would marry one? (lol)
If the issue is not one that is a doctrinal one, why should not the church decide as a whole? There was no such objection when the previous votes were taken. Why now? This statement of yours belies that it is a moral issue.
I have not problem with WO. But I do with the imposition on the rest of the world that it is a moral issue. You think it is a moral issue, but Jesus said nothing about it, nor Paul. It is not a moral issue, but a cultural one.
You act as if not ordaining women leads to persecution, slavery and a host of other evils. And then have the gaul to say that the vote was taxation without representation. So since you pay, you get to call the shots? What kind of an attitude is that?
Ordination would mean that the credential would have to be honored everywhere. We already have a method by which a woman can be recognized locally: commissioning. So, it is the West that is trying to impose its thinking on the rest of the world.
The adoption of WO would not help the West a whit. The liberal churches who have been doing this for almost 50 years are sinking like stones. The evangelical churches that did not have fared much better, but are also beginning to shrink. The West is immune to the workings of the Spirit, and doing WO will not help.
Here is the problem. The vote was not seen as a moral one, and was it seen in the past as a vote on a moral issue, like the Sabbath would be. Give me a command by God that we must do WO. You can’t, so the idea that it is immoral not to do it just fails. You can’t accuse the church of immorality unless you can show that it is immoral not to do it. Is it allowed? I think so, but that is opinion, not morality.
You and yours have never been able to show that this is a moral issue, accept to reference western thinking. That is not the standard.
"Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself. There is no commandment greater than these.” Mark 12:30-31
Accomplish this and there would be no problems in the SDA church.
Allen, this has been gone over and over again…let conferences all over the world decide for themselves whether or not to ordain women. This was all that was on the table…and it got shut down by those in other countries who feel that WO is wrong. End of topic. If Adventism schisms over this issue…so be it. Just because you don’t feel it isn’t a “moral” issue, doesn’t mean it isn’t one for someone else.
Kim, yes around and around. But look at what you do:
One says it should be the leaders listening to the constituents.
But the GC in session is the ultimate constituency meeting, and it said no.
Then one says, the majority is not always right.
Yes, but that is how we run the church. They could be wrong, and the issue can be revisited. But in this instance, it has always been voted down.
Than you say, with others, “It is a moral issue!”
But where is the “Thus saith the Lord.”, like the Sabbath command? There is no none. Your best shot is Gal 3:28. But the apostolic church had this verse, and yet there is no evidence that they ordained women.
So, for each objection there is a good answer. If you want to go into schism on this issue, it is your prerogative, but you are really shaky ground. I don’t see that it is a reasonable stance.
Keep on spinning, Allen…it’s all been said and done. What you see as a “reasonable stance” will probably not matter in the end. It isn’t me who is on “shaky” ground.
Allen, what is your problem?
Yes, the GC SA/15 voted that NO, the Divisions will not be given the power/authority to make decisions about ordination. Then the GC President said that everything remains as it was.
So what is your problem now? You know that the Unions always managed ordination issues, historically since the beginning. The vote was not to expand this duty to the Divisions, therefore nothing is changed. Do you accept that the “NO” vote was inspired? You should!!!
What is the doubt about this all? Let the Unions do their job!
Geeeesh, it’s so tiring to keep spinning around the same pole over and over again!..
It will be fun, if not terrifying and disturbing, to see how the next attack against the Unions will look like in October…
All I need is a “Thus saith the Lord.”