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Where Did They All Come From? Doctrines and Denominations! LUKE 20:4-7 “The baptism of John, was it from heaven, or of men? And they reasoned with themselves, saying, If we shall say, From heaven; he will say, Why then believed ye him not? But and if we say, Of men; all the people will stone us: for they be persuaded that John was a prophet. And they answered, that they could not tell whence it was.” The King James Version, (Cambridge: Cambridge) 1769.
SEVENTH DAY ADVENTISTS Historical Background General Information: 2007 USA membership =935,4284,619 houses of worship = 4,619 (The World Almanac and Book of Facts, 2007, p. 711) There are many more Seventh Day Adventist Churches throughout the world There have been numerous offshoots of the Seventh Day Adventist Church and the Adventist movement. (Obviously, these offshoots represent some doctrinal variations as well as similarities. We will concentrate on The Seventh Day Adventist Church in our doctrinal study.)
SEVENTH DAY ADVENTISTS Historical Background The Beginnings: “Seventh-Day Adventism (SDA) arose from the aftermath of the Adventist movement of the mid-1800s.” (Seventh-Day Adventism, Orthodox or Cult,www.rapidnet.com) The following historical information is largely summarized from online material by Gene Taylor and essentially concurs with numerous other sources consulted: William Miller (1782-1849) – A New York farmer who went from being a Baptist to being a Deist (the belief that God created the universe, but has not been actively involved since that time)and then back to being a Baptist again. His influence began about 1831. Miller is best known for his intricate calculations which led him to conclude that the Second Coming of Christ was soon to take place.
SEVENTH DAY ADVENTISTS Historical Background The Beginnings: William Miller (1782-1849) In the 1830’s Miller set time frames for the Lord’s return. In 1833 he wrote that the event would occur about 1843. By 1840 the Adventist was gaining ground and numbers. (The Seventh Day Adventist Church did not yet exist.)Numerous others were teaching that Christ would return in 1843. Eventually Miller said that Christ would return between March 21, 1842 and March 21, 1843. When Christ did not come Miller set 1844 and 1845 respectively as His next speculations and calculations. Obviously these dates missed also. Some of Miller’s followers abandoned the cause, but others continued to follow the Adventist ideas, offering various explanations on Miller’s behalf. The Adventist movement did not die.
SEVENTH DAY ADVENTISTS Historical Background The Beginnings: William Miller (1782-1849) Note: Miller’s failed predictions show the futility of trying to predict the Lord’s return. Many have spent their time speculating based on an attempt to do what the Lord has not asked us to do, figure out when the Lord’s return and the end of time will occur. Seventh Day Adventism still occupies itself greatly with “end time” passages. We have a great deal of material available concerning the kingdom of God and “end time” topics. Please request lessons on this subject as we will not get into that subject at length tonight.
SEVENTH DAY ADVENTISTS Historical Background The Beginnings: Ellen G. White (1827-1915) Became leader of Seventh-Day branch of Adventism in 1846 Had dreams beginning in 1844 which began a history of her receiving many visions during her life. She is regarded by Seventh Day Adventists as a prophet. She claimed that William Millers predictions about Christ were true, though they had been misunderstood. “While Miller always attempted to ground his teachings on his exposition of the Bible, (White) went beyond the Bible and based much of her teaching on her numerous revelations.” Gene Taylor Ellen G. White with her husband, James, and partly because of her visions insisted on Sabbath keeping as taught in the Old Testament. (William Miller had taught first day of the week worship.)
SEVENTH DAY ADVENTISTS Historical Background The Beginnings: Ellen G. White (1827-1915) Ellen and James White were responsible for the organization of the Seventh-Day Adventist Church About 1863 the church officially came into existence (Ellen White is still regarded as a prophet by Seventh-Day Adventism, though some say she is not given much public attention now.)
SEVENTH DAY ADVENTISTS Major Doctrines • Seventh Day Adventists hold to many of the same doctrinal ideas as many main stream Protestant denominations. • Since we have discussed many of those ideas in previous programs we will mainly use our time tonight to deal with some of the teachings that are particularly identified with Seventh Day Adventism. • However, part of what we talk about tonight will connect to doctrinal ideas that are similar to other denominations from previous programs. • There are many doctrinal ideas of the Seventh Day Adventists which we will not have time to consider.
SEVENTH DAY ADVENTISTS Some statements from The Seventh Day Adventist Church website Our Name: “The name Seventh-day Adventist includes vital beliefs for us as a Church. 'Adventist' reflects our passionate conviction in the nearness of the soon return ('advent') of Jesus. 'Seventh-day' refers to the Biblical Sabbath which from Creation has always been the seventh day of the week, or Saturday.” www.adventist.org/beliefs/fundamental (official website of the Seventh Day Adventist Church)
SEVENTH DAY ADVENTISTS Some statements from The Seventh Day Adventist Church website About the World Headquarters: “Located in Silver Spring, Maryland, since 1989, the church headquarters building, known as the General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists, houses and supports the administration of one of the world's fastest growing churches.” www.adventist.org/beliefs/fundamental (official website of the Seventh Day Adventist Church)
SEVENTH DAY ADVENTISTS Some statements from The Seventh Day Adventist Church website Fundamental Beliefs Seventh-day Adventists accept the Bible as their only creed and hold certain fundamental beliefs to be the teaching of the Holy Scriptures. These beliefs, as set forth here, constitute the church's understanding and expression of the teaching of Scripture. Revision of these statements may be expected at a General Conference session when the church is led by the Holy Spirit to a fuller understanding of Bible truth or finds better language in which to express the teachings of God's Holy Word. www.adventist.org/beliefs/fundamental (official website of the Seventh Day Adventist Church)
SEVENTH DAY ADVENTISTS Some statements from The Seventh Day Adventist Church website Seventh-day Adventist Church Manual Revised 200517th Edition This present edition incorporates all revisions and additions accepted up to and including the 2005 General Conference Session. www.adventist.org/beliefs/fundamental (official website of the Seventh Day Adventist Church)
SEVENTH DAY ADVENTISTS Major Doctrines • Seventh Day Adventist Church • Holy Scriptures: “… Old and New Testaments, are the written Word of God, given by divine inspiration… The Holy Scriptures are the infallible revelation of His will. They are the standard of character, the test of experience, the authoritative revealer of doctrines, and the trustworthy record of God's acts in history. (2 Peter 1:20, 21; 2 Tim. 3:16, 17; Ps. 119:105; Prov. 30:5, 6; Isa. 8:20; John 17:17; 1 Thess. 2:13; Heb. 4:12.)” • www.adventist.org/beliefs/fundamental(official website of the Seventh Day Adventist Church)
SEVENTH DAY ADVENTISTS – Major Doctrines • THE BIBLE: • Sufficiency and verbal inspiration of the scriptures to provide salvation - 2 Tim. 3:16-17; 2 Peter 1:3; 1 Cor. 2:13; 1 Thess. 2:13; Matthew 10:17-20. • These scriptures, as well as some of those cited on the previous chart, teach that the “Holy Scriptures: … Old and New Testaments, are the written Word of God, given by divine inspiration…” • HOWEVER: See following charts
SEVENTH DAY ADVENTISTS Major Doctrines Seventh Day Adventist Church Spiritual gifts and Ministries: “God bestows upon all members of His church in every age spiritual gifts… such ministries as faith, healing, prophecy, proclamation, teaching, administration, reconciliation, compassion, and self-sacrificing service and charity for the help and encouragement of people…” www.adventist.org/beliefs/fundamental(official website of the Seventh Day Adventist Church)
SEVENTH DAY ADVENTISTS – Major Doctrines • THE BIBLE: • Miraculous spiritual gifts were for the revealing and confirming of God’s word - John 15:26-27; 16:12-15; Mark 16:20; Heb. 2:3-4. • God stopped bestowing miraculous gifts on people when His revelation was complete – John 16:12-15 - Spirit would guide those inspired teachers into all truth. • I Corinthians 13 – When “that which is perfect has come (completed revelation – see context), then that which is in part will be done away (miraculous gifts would cease – see context).” (Request notes on Pope/Cripps debate for further information on this point.)
SEVENTH DAY ADVENTISTS Major Doctrines Seventh Day Adventist Church The Gift of Prophecy: “One of the gifts of the Holy Spirit is prophecy. This gift is an identifying mark of the remnant church and was manifested in the ministry of Ellen. G. White . As the Lord's messenger, her writings are a continuing and authoritative source of truth which provide for the church comfort, guidance, instruction, and correction. They also make clear that the Bible is the standard by which all teaching and experience must be tested. (Joel 2:28, 29; Acts 2:14-21; Heb. 1:1-3; Rev. 12:17; 19:10.)” www.adventist.org/beliefs/fundamental(official website of the Seventh Day Adventist Church)
THE BIBLE: It is certain that prophets were among those who revealed the truth of God (Acts 2:14-21; Eph. 2:19-3:5), but God’s having given prophecies in Biblical times does not prove that He has given them in later times. “Prophecies” are specifically mentioned as ending when “that which is perfect (completed revelation)has come” (I Corinthians 13:8-10) If the inspired teachers were guided into all truth (John 16:12-15), and if the inspired scriptures equip for every good work (II Tim. 3:16-17), why is there need for “a continuing and authoritative source of truth” as is claimed of Ellen G. White. (Request notes on Pope/Cripps debate for further information on this point.) SEVENTH DAY ADVENTISTS – Major Doctrines
SEVENTH DAY ADVENTISTSMajor Doctrines The Bible The Seventh Day Adventist Church says, “The church derives its authority from Christ, who is the incarnate Word, and from the Scriptures, which are the written Word.” But where does the Bible authorize: a centralized organization? with earthly headquarters? which determines the “fundamental beliefs” of the church? and issues and revises a “church manual”? (All of which were mentioned in earlier charts from “the official website of The Seventh Day Adventist”)
SEVENTH DAY ADVENTISTSMajor Doctrines The Bible regarding: Church organization? The one body (church = “assembly; congregation” – in a universal sense)of Christ is NOT an organization. It is a “calling out,” an “assembling” of people through the gospel (II Thess. 2:13-14) to be reconciled to God through the cleansing of their sins (II Cor. 5:18-21), and “built up a spiritual house, a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ (I Peter 2:5; Matt. 16:18.)” “Church” in this sense refers to people being “gathered” to God. The only type of “organization” that we find for the Lord’s church in the New Testament is the “local” congregation (church = “assembly; congregation” – used in a local sense). Each church is designed to have it’s own oversight (Acts 14:23), and they literally “come together” in one place (Acts 20:7; I Cor. 14:23).
SEVENTH DAY ADVENTISTSMajor Doctrines The Bible regarding: Headquarters? Christ is THE head of the church (Col. 1:18; Eph. 1:22, 23). He has all authority in heaven and on earth (Matt. 28:18). He resides and rules in Heaven (Acts 2:33-36;Eph. 1:20-23). No earthly headquarters for the church is authorized in God’s word; the creating of earthly “church headquarters” represents a complete disrespect for the divine authority of the true head (Col. 3:17).
SEVENTH DAY ADVENTISTSMajor Doctrines The Bible regarding: “Fundamental beliefs”? “Church manual”? God has always forbidden adding to or taking away from His word (Deut. 4:2; 12:32; Prov. 30:6; Rev. 22:18-19) Man is to live by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God (Matt. 4:4) What church has the authority to select a group of beliefs which are fundamental to their members Who has the authority to write a “manual” or “creed” for a group of people to follow. The entire Bible is God’s word!
SEVENTH DAY ADVENTISTSMajor Doctrines • Seventh Day Adventist Church • The official website of the Seventh Day Adventist Church says, “The church is God's family; adopted by Him as children, its members live on the basis of the new covenant.” • God’s people today truly are partakers of the New Covenant of Christ (Heb. 8:6-13). The enactment of the New Covenant constitutes a “change of law” from the Old Covenant (Heb. 7:12). • The statement from the Adventist Church seems to represent a right attitude toward the New Covenant. • HOWEVER – see the following slides
SEVENTH DAY ADVENTISTSMajor Doctrines Seventh Day Adventist Church Law of God: “The great principles of God's law are embodied in the Ten Commandments and exemplified in the life of Christ. They express God's love, will, and purposes concerning human conduct and relationships and are binding upon all people in every age. These precepts are the basis of God's covenant with His people and the standard in God's judgment.” www.adventist.org/beliefs/fundamental (official website of the Seventh Day Adventist Church) Seventh Day Adventists hold that Ten Commandment Law was NOT part of the Law that was taken out of the way and nailed to the cross of Christ (Col. 2:14; Eph. 2:14-16)
SEVENTH DAY ADVENTISTSMajor Doctrines Seventh Day Adventist Church The belief that Ten Commandment Law, per se, is still binding on us today is the basis for the Adventists’ view that the Old Testament Sabbath must still be kept. Sabbath: “The fourth commandment of God's unchangeable law requires the observance of this seventh-day Sabbath as the day of rest, worship, and ministry in harmony with the teaching and practice of Jesus, the Lord of the Sabbath.” www.adventist.org/beliefs/fundamental (official website of the Seventh Day Adventist Church)
SEVENTH DAY ADVENTISTSMajor Doctrines The Bible: Ten Commandment Law is part of the Law to which we died so we may be joined to Christ (Rom. 7:1-7) This does not mean that we may steal, kill, covet, etc. today. The New Covenant of Christ repeats all of the Ten Commandments EXCEPT the Sabbath commandment. Col. 2:16 “So let no one judge you in food or in drink, or regarding a festival or a new moon or sabbaths, 17 which are a shadow of things to come, but the substance is of Christ.” This is in a context of the Old Testament having been nailed to the cross of Christ.
SEVENTH DAY ADVENTISTSMajor Doctrines The Bible: Christ certainly kept the sabbath. He was under the Law which demanded it and He kept that Law perfectly. The New Testament was not ratified until the death of Christ. We are not under the same Law that He lived under. The first day of the week is the day that is specified for our worship today. (Acts 20:7; I Cor. 16:1-3.) The first day of the week is never referred to as the sabbath. There is no such thing in the New Testament as a Christian Sabbath.
SEVENTH DAY ADVENTISTSMajor Doctrines The Bible: Heb. 4:9 – “There remains therefore a rest for the people of God.” This verse is talking the rest that is in store for the people of God because of what Christ has provided, that is, the forgiveness of sins and eternal life. This passage is not discussing a day of rest required by God.
IN CONCLUSION …. • The Seventh Day Adventist Church started in the USA in the 1800’s • The church that Christ said He would build in (Matthew 16:18) is almost 2,000 years old. • The doctrines, practices and organization of the Seventh Day Adventist Church which have been considered in this lesson demonstrate its human origin. • The Seventh Day Adventist church thus has: • A wrong starting date • A wrong starting place • Wrong founders • And a set of wrong doctrines and practices.
Call To Speak ToUS Live Now!!! • Call And --- • Ask For A Copy Of This Presentation. • BY EMAIL, BY FLOPPY DISK or IN PRINT. • Ask To Be Added To The Beacon’s Mailing. • Ask For A Free Bible Correspondence Course. • Check Out Our Website – www.wordandsword.com • Call With A --- • Biblical Question Or Comment. • Receive a Biblical Answer – “Book, Chapter and Verse”. Call (828)485-5555