Why King Was Not an Adventist

Could Martin Luther King have been both a civil-rights activist and a Seventh-day Adventist? No. Here is why. The milieu of the black community, the black theology of the Baptist Church, and the liberal Protestantism of his seminary training all played a role in shaping this national leader. Of these three influences, black theology had the greatest impact on King's life. The very fibers of King's soul pulsated with the religion of his people. This is what King himself thought of his theological roots:

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at https://spectrummagazine.org/article/2018/01/15/why-king-was-not-adventist

Thank you for the RePrint.
SDA ism STILL is NOT concerned with the WHOLE MAN and WOMAN.
When women are raised to their rightful place by some,
The CHURCH Terrorizes those who do.
Our Gospel Story is also very limited and we are afraid to live in the
Highways, Byways, and Hedges from where Jesus invited the guests
to the Wedding Feast.
We still have our own “Ivory Towers” where we find refuge.


Steve’s comment is true.


What does that say about Adventism - and what does it say about the civil right’s movement? Is it that Adventism doesn’t lead to cultural and political change; and civil rights doesn’t automatically grow out of a spiritual commitment to God’s eschatological plan (which is what Adventism emphasizes).

Of course, the Jews have lived in slavery as well; and have been throughout history. The entire OT speaks to redemption from slavery, and a hope for restoration of a people - and justice. History does seem to have recurrent themes.


Which is it ? God ? . . . or a man, Moses ?
Who delivers from ‘Egypt’ ? Who liberates from ‘self’-dependence ?

This ambivalence regarding where we humans place our trust is not unique to a specific ‘race’, or ‘sex’. At one time the Christian ‘cult’ was harshly persecuted. Then Christian society in Rome got ‘delivered’ out of the dark, filthy catacombs and ‘liberated’ into the free air and Sun-shine, when their Bishop became politically active and ultimately persecuted heretical ‘cults’. . . . Under the Nimrod-crown the enslavement of the poor became a religious obligation in order to provide for ‘the Divine right of kings’, and Nimrod was the son of Ethiopia’s Cush, and grandson of Egypt’s Ham. Yet, these were the first ‘kingdoms’ to be established that were not defined, merely, by family ties, but by geo-religious-political boundaries established merely by human might, regardless of ‘right’ – regardless of ‘equity’ – such as those boundaries that still divide Europe’s formerly mostly ‘White’ society.

(My own ‘White’ European ancestors were essentially ‘slaves’ who escaped to America. The trouble is, so did their ‘White’ owners. My coal-mine-orphaned Italian grandmother worked under a free African-American woman who taught her how to wash and iron linens at a Pittsburgh, PA hotel. She later settled with her German-exile husband 30 miles west of Battle Creek, MI, next to a small community of rural African-American landowners. That’s where I grew up, and where my youngest sister worked as a baby-sitter for one of those African-American families . . . and loved it !)

Last summer I worked in one of the few remaining most ‘liberal’ states in the ‘Union’ – Minnesota. The labor pool for solar projects, such as those I worked on, comes primarily from the sunny, southern states, including former ‘slave’ states. Typically, in those states, such solar ‘construction work’ is done largely by African, Latino, and ‘First Nation’ Americans. So, for a while, we had only 3 ‘White’ workers from Minnesota on our crew. One of those 3 loved African-American music, and claimed he had always wished he had been born ‘Black’ . . . yet, the ‘Black’ workers on our crew openly hated him most, because he would not slow down his work-pace when they told him to do so. So, they refused to work with him. When he dared to use ‘their’ 4WD buggy to run an errand, and neglected to return it to the exact spot where they had parked it . . .
the ‘s_ _t hit the fan’ !

On one Sabbath when I was absent from work, my other ‘White’ co-worker said that the ‘Black’ workers had told him, ‘We’re the true Jews.’ And, they demanded that the contractor provide them with their own ice chest for water, and their own shade-tarp so that they could take their breaks ‘segregated’ from us ‘minority’ ‘White’ gentiles. . . .

So, how, exactly, has the involvement of ‘religion’ in social matters, or in ‘state’ politics, ever led to ‘Liberty and justice for all.’ ? . . . for any longer than the 5 seconds it takes for the minority-oppressed to comfortably settle in as the majority-oppressors ?

Backing up:
When Israel made the golden calf at Mt. Sinai, got caught, and Moses went back up to plead on their behalf with God in order to protect God’s reputation among the nations . . .
God told Moses in Exodus 32:7 that Moses had delivered Israel from Egypt,
and Moses told God in Exodus 32:11 that God had done it . . . . Which is it ?

Israel often blamed Moses (and Aaron) for taking them away from the better food of Egypt, to starve in the wilderness. Finally, Moses agreed that he and Aaron, humanly, with God, brought water from the rock, the second time around. So, as a result, neither Aaron, nor Moses, nor Israel – as a social unit – were ever delivered, in spirit – e-motiv-a-tion-al-ly – from Egypt, or later, from Babylon. The focus of their ambivalent ‘trust alone’ repeatedly wavered between the ‘divine right of’ human ‘kings’ – such as their false messiah was hoped to be – and the right of the Divine to be king, of their heart-motivations, as was true of the ‘heart’ of their true Messiah.

The same ‘Egyptian-Babylonian’ ‘captivity’ remains true of the SDA church – as a ‘people’ – as long as we fail to unanimously grasp, preach, and demonstrate that ‘the faith of Jesus’ is not our own compromising, fallen, ambivalent human ‘faith’, but that only-Divine faith of ‘the mind of Christ’ that we accept as a free gift by ‘beholding’ that ‘King of the Jews’ – King of Appraisers of God and mankind – who against all negative evidence from both mankind, and from God, to the contrary said, ‘Father, forgive them . . . .’, and,
‘Father, into Your hands I set aside my spirit.’,
NOT, ‘Father, let me show you how to do it – how better to regain the trust of ‘all’. . . .’,
NOT, the offering of indignant Cain.

Christian religion’s role is to provide success stories for God, for the purpose of contagiously educating all human ‘spirits’ to reflect that purely Divine character of fidelity toward both mankind and Divinity which Adam and Cain squandered and Jesus and Abel eagerly grasped. If the SDA Christian religion had not failed to whole-heartedly, contagiously, accept that role of promoting the ‘pure Gold’ ‘Faith of Jesus’ as a cure for all ‘inequity’, in 1844, in 1888 . . . and, still, today, ‘society’, ‘religion’ and ‘politics’ would have been dusty displays in Heaven’s Museum of Human History, long ago.
And, the equitable ‘Dream’ of Martin Luther King Jr. would not still be depending on the wavering ‘power’ of ambivalent human will, alone, and the broken trust which that ambivalence breeds.

“‘The silver (desire, will) is Mine, (‘Mine’ = Divine, not human.)
and the gold (faith that works through love – not fear – and purifies the soul) is Mine,’ (ditto)
says the LORD of hosts.” Haggai 2:8

Haggai 2:7 is the text from which the book title, The Desire of Ages (‘desire of all nations’) was derived. Ellen had hoped to write much of that book from a hillside setting overlooking Little Traverse Bay in Petoskey, MI. A beautiful place very similar to the hills and sea of Galilee. Forget ‘copyrights’ and ‘plagiarism’, she built a sweet new house on property she bought from a fellow SDA, for which I was unable to find a deed registered in Emmet County ! When I contacted the White Estate, they connected me with a scholar from Andrews who sent me pictures and maps for identifying Ellen’s house, and told me that it was not uncommon in those days, even among SDAs, to not bother with such official government involvements. (Go figure ! Adventists investing in, and operating on, mere trust ! ? . . . with no means of appealing to higher human powers for ‘equity’?)

The worst shame and loss in sending Ellen to Australia at that very time was that the Methodist Summer Camp, Bayview’ – ‘Chautauqua on Lake Michigan’ – which still draws audiences and famous speakers from around the States and the world . . . is still just a few steps from the northeast corner of Ellen’s hillside ‘Galilee of the Gentiles’ house, from which SDAs might have shone the Great Light of that un-ambivalentwill of God AND the faith of Jesus’ referred to in the COMPLETE ‘3rd angel’s message’ ! ( Even Spectrum can only dream of occupying such an opportune and timely situation.) . . . long before Martin Luther King, Jr. ever needed to see and experience the great darkness of ambivalent ‘inequity’.


“Not the God of the white man, whose God is mainly a God of the head and not the heart,” I stopped reading about right here. Your lips are moving, but I can’t hear what you’re saying. I think some clarification is needed.


Dear Menssana: Your survey and comments about the MLK could not be an SDA preacher article has an interesting sidem like the writers view of how Whites view God and Blacks view God, and you answered in reasonable awareness that out of slavery, the slaves were introducted to Christianity. Which is true. God took something bad and turned it in to good, like God always does. I would have added that with the misery and evilness of slavery, the black slaves were brought into knowledge of God as Father and Ultimate Deliverer, and to Jesus who opened the way to Heaven for Blacks and Whites, with Ultimate Freedom of all kinds of slavery. You were factual at first then started being unkind in your comments at the end, telling the writer to leave the SDA faith if it is so onesided. You even said, “Go pracitce your headless marvelous black religion elsewhere.” You ruined your argument right there! You should have said that Martin Luther King was a man for his time, for blacks were treated shamlessly in the south. Some of my southern relatives have told me horrible stories about it. Segregation was not a pretty picture in the south in the 1950s and before even in churches, even by Christians, even by SDAs. I liked the article about MLK. It had merit. I agreed with 60-70% of it. We as a Church have been guilty of a Separatist view, probably more like Segregation like attitude, certainly in the past. I have seen it, and I am white. MLK will always be viewed as the major Christian leader of the Blacks as he should be. He and his theology was not perfect, but who is? MLK
relected the times, and he did well. I am sure Jesus marched with him as all of us should have if we had been there.

The practice of emotional CONTROL of the crowds is a very useful tool used by many leaders of/in the Remnant Church, mostly by the male leadership.

The most infamous example has certainly been the absurdity of imposing discrimination of women as in the case of the anti-WO crusade. Denying women in Church the right to become ordained ministers is nothing but a sign of untreated gender bias AND of personal weakness.

Men hiding behind the anti-WO wall have serious emotional blockages - and they don’t even know it. The WO issue has absolutely nothing to do with spirituality, Biblical prescription or practice, or legit religious rules. It’s only foundation is male bias targeting CONTROL. Those anti-WO men’s personalities are so vulnerable and weak that they panic just thinking of a woman being ordained as ministers.

I am sure our resident Psychiatrist Dr. @elmer_cupino could easily broaden our understanding of how some infant psychological traits may never mature in certain individuals, thus affecting their behavior in their adult life.


And don’t forget the “prayer maneuver” every 15 minutes particularly when the GC position is losing support during committee meetings.


Plus the “Ratsara maneuver,” remember? TW has been using it quite bit. The AC18 was an example when he gave the impression that the idea of getting those signatures from the crowd was an idea supported by some committee, but it was not, it was all HIS own idea. Yes, “Ratsara style.”

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