Dear Friends on Adventist Online,
I would appreciate if you could read the article written by one of my country man to one of our daily newspapers. He is a roman catholic christian. He wrote this article after Pr. John Carter completed an Evangelistic meeting in my country, Papua New Guinea (PNG).
How would you counter the arguments presented in his article? How would you answer the questions (in bold) he asked?
Please provide your response. We've exchanged mails in the last 3 days, and now I would like to respond to his article. I will do my own study and prepare answers for a meaningful discussion with him, but I would appreciate if you could give your response to his arguments.
I pray that may the Holy Spirit Lead him to the light, and just like Paul, He can be changed and be the advocate for truth.
CLAIMS BY SDA CHURCH IS LAUGHABLE
Thirty years ago, the Australian Seventh Day Adventist Church Pastor John Carter visited PNG and gave a two weeks on the so-called SDA Revelations Seminar at Sir Hubert Murray Stadium. Carter claimed that the Catholic Church is the whore of Babylon alluded to in Revelations 17. Moreover, he alleged that its Pope, is the anti-Christ depicted by 666 of Revelations 13. Repeating Ellen White’s allegations in her book The Great Controversy he claimed the Pope will conspire with USA and together, they will persecute every Seventh Day Adventist Saturday Sabbath-keepers on earth before Christ returns. This claim is as ridiculous as it is laughable. This cultic mentality is believed only by fervent SDA believers even though Mrs. White’s interpretations lack biblical support and modern day indicators. But then SDA’s are sworn to believe and not question whatever Mrs. White has written (embedded in the SDA’s “ever-changing” 28 Fundamental Beliefs).
The SDA church is now being rocked by its own biblical scholars in USA, Europe and South Africa who are denouncing the teachings of Ellen Gould White as non-biblical and cultic. The church’s crusades and seminars are no longer publicly advertised under the name of the church because of embarrassment. Instead, the church sponsor is veiled by banners and glossy eye-catching advertising posters such as “Amazing Discoveries” and “Health Seminar” which targets nations such as PNG whose christians are still behind revelations and revolutions in the global Christian kingdom.
In this first visit to PNG 30 years ago, Pastor Carter’s parting challenge was to give K1,000 to any Roman Catholic who could prove by the bible that Sunday is a day of worship and not the Jewish Saturday Sabbath. Not surprisingly, the good pastor was relatively subdued during his second visit to Port Moresby last month. SDA bible scholars such as Robert Brinsmead, Professor Desmond Ford have found that the bible is silent on both Saturday and Sunday Sabbath for Christians. The Old Testament taught Sabbath-keeping for God’s chosen 12 tribes of the Jewish ancestry. This teaching was never extrapolated to the first Christians of the New Testament. In fact St. Paul in the New Testament taught the early Christians of Rome, Colossae books and the Hebrews not to observe Jewish traditions including the Jewish Sabbath keeping and outlawing eating “unclean” food such as pork and mackerel (yes, to be consistent, mackerel too).
If Pastor John Carter wants the bible to be used as his standard of test, I challenge him - or any of his disciples - to prove by the bible that the Jewish Sabbath applies to Christians. Pastor Carter should clearly explain (without convoluting simple bible texts with Mrs. White’s literary deception) why Jesus exalted Love as the greatest commandment - in the books of Matthew, John and 1 John - and not the Jewish Saturday Sabbath. Why did Jesus teach that Love is the greatest commandment by which “hangs all the prophets and the law” (Mt 22: 35-40)? Leading SDA tele-evangelists such as Ps John Carter and Ps Doug Bachelor are themselves entangled in the internal conflicts confronting the SDA church in the US and Europe but avoid talking about it. As a result, when they mount the pedestal in countries not up to speed with religious revelations and revolutions, they become too immodest to inform these uninformed about these great controversies rocking the firmament of the SDA Church in USA. Instead they are courageous about publicly persecuting Sunday worshippers, the Pope and the Catholic Church.
A former SDA Australian Pastor, Robert Brinsmead (sacked by the SDA Church for questioning Ellen White’s teachings) pleads in his book, “Judged By The Gospel”, to test the teachings of Ellen Gould White by the Bible and not the other way around. In addition, I am pleading to SDA’s in PNG not to place too much credence in the new SDA version of the Bible, the “Clear Word Bible”. This is because SDA’s own bible scholars are horrified that the so-called “Clear Word Bible” have been corrupted in a lot of places in order to vindicate the false and wrong teachings of Mrs. White. They say that is akin to the “tail wagging the dog”, or “making the crime fit the punishment”.
therefore since it has not changed it is still binding right ?
the Roman catholic church changed it then they also changed the commandments
I don't think most churches know what sabbath is or how they came to worship on Sunday.
short sermon on the Sabbath part 2
The next reason for keeping the Sabbath is simply this, friends; that the disciples of Jesus kept it as He did. There have been many arguments about this, but I'd like to read you some passages from the book of Acts where we find the record of the disciples' work. I want you to note what it says here about Sabbath keeping. This is Acts 13:14. "But when they departed from Perga, they came to Antioch in Pisidia, and went into the synagogue on the sabbath day, and sat down." Here they were in Antioch keeping the Sabbath. Acts 16:13 is another one. "And on the sabbath we went out of the city by a river side, where prayer was wont to be made; and we sat down, and spake unto the women which resorted thither." Here they were in Philippi, a city in Macedonia, and they were keeping the Sabbath out by the riverside. Now many people feel that the only reason the disciples worshiped on the Sabbath was to preach to the Jews and that they never worshiped on that day otherwise. But I call you to witness, that here they were in Greece now; there was no Jewish synagogue there as far as we know, and they went out to the riverside. These Christian people met, worshiped, and prayed there on the Sabbath. That's Acts 16:13. Why didn't they meet on Sunday with those folk in the Gentile country of Macedonia? I'll tell you why, friends. Because those disciples kept the Sabbath.
Acts 17:2 says, "And Paul, as his manner was, went in unto them, and three sabbath days reasoned with them out of the scriptures." Sabbath keeping was Paul's manner or custom, the exact same custom that Christ had, worshiping on the Sabbath. Acts 18:4, "And he reasoned in the synagogue every sabbath, and persuaded the Jews and the Greeks." Now notice, Paul was preaching every Sabbath and not only to the Jews but to the Greeks or the Gentiles, not on Sunday, the first day of the week, but on Sabbath. Here's another one. Acts 13:42 and 44. "And when the Jews were gone out of the synagogue, the Gentiles besought that these words might be preached to them the next sabbath." Many people say, "Well, he preached to the Jews only on Sabbath but when he preached to the Gentiles, it was on the first day of the week." But now here we find the Gentiles asking that he also preach to them on the Sabbath. Now notice verse 44. What did Paul do about this request? "And the next sabbath day came almost the whole city together to hear the word of God." Why, friends, there it is, Sabbath keepers! That's what the scripture says very, very plainly about the apostles.
Now we do know this. Paul positively did not teach Sunday keeping. You say, "Well, how do you know that? Well let's read a verse on it now. Acts 28:17. Paul was under arrest, and this is the way our text reads: "And it came to pass, that after three days Paul called the chief of the Jews together: And when they were come together, he said unto them, Men and brethren, though I have committed nothing against the people, or customs of our fathers, yet was I delivered prisoner from Jerusalem into the hands of the Romans." Now I want you to notice that Paul said to all those Jews gathered together, "Brethren I'm here in prison at the hands of the Romans but I want you to know that it wasn't because I taught anything against the teachings of our fathers." Now everybody, even the most orthodox Sunday-keepers today, will tell you that the Jews kept Saturday. No one denies that the Jews kept the Sabbath and Paul, standing there before them, was saying, "I did nothing in my preaching or teaching against the tradition of the Jews." Now either Paul was telling an untruth or Paul did not teach Sunday keeping, friends. Of course we know Paul was telling the truth, so the disciples were Sabbath keepers and they taught Sabbath keeping.
Let me say this further, neither Christ nor the disciples ever thought or taught that the first day of the week was a holy day. We plan to go into that more fully tomorrow when we'll read every text in the Bible that even mentions the first day of the week and examine every one of them carefully. If we don't get to it tomorrow, we'll get to it the next day. But be assured of this, friends, the first day of the week as a holy day is not in the Bible at all.
Now, the next reason for keeping the Sabbath is that it's necessary if I plan to be blessed. Let's readIsaiah 56:2. "Blessed is the man that doeth this, and the son of man that layeth hold on it; that keepeth the sabbath from polluting it, and keepeth his hand from doing any evil." Now, do you want to be blessed, friend? I'll tell you how, keep the Sabbath. A lot of folks will say, "Oh yes, but that was for the Jews." Well, let's read on now in verse 6: "Also the sons of the stranger that join themselves to the Lord, (now here you have Gentiles, friends) to serve Him, and to love the name of the Lord, to be his servants, every one that keepeth the sabbath from polluting it, and taketh hold of my covenant; even them will I bring to my holy mountain, and make them joyful in my house of prayer: for mine house shall be called an house of prayer for all people." And so, if the Book means anything, and it means everything, of course, Sabbath keeping is necessary if we are to receive God's full blessing. By the way, that word "blessed" actually means "happy". Nothing will bring peace of mind and inner happiness like Sabbath keeping. For spiritual, mental, and physical well-being, it's unequaled. These ancient records of scripture recommend rest, Sabbath rest, for health and happiness long before modern medicine ever made the discovery or made the recommendation.
Well, I could give many, many more reasons as to why we should keep the Sabbath. I shall give more, though, in a later broadcast, but these are the four key reasons that I've given so far and I hope you'll study them over very carefully, friends.
Now I'd like to examine a few reasons people give for not keeping the seventh day Sabbath. The first one is, "It's Jewish." You've heard that over and over again. A person becomes a member of the Sabbath keeping church and folks will say every time, "Oh, you've become a Jew" or "That's Jewish." Well, friends, I've looked through the Bible again and again and have never been able to discover where the Lord called it a Jewish Sabbath anywhere. I have, however, discovered where He called it something else. Exodus 20, verse 10. We read it a moment ago. "The seventh day is the sabbath of the , Jews, is that what it says? No indeed. It says, "The seventh day is the sabbath of the Lord thy God." Now people may call it the Jewish Sabbath but God calls it the Sabbath of the Lord.Isaiah 56:6, notice what it says now. "Also the sons of the stranger, that join themselves to the Lord, to serve him, and to love the name of the Lord, to be his servants and lay hold of the sabbath." Now he's speaking here of keeping the Sabbath and he says we'll be blessed in doing it but notice that these people joined themselves to the Lord when they began to keep the Sabbath. People say you've joined the Jews when you keep the Sabbath but the Bible says that you've joined the Lord. God has an entirely different opinion from men today about some of these things.
Mark 2:27 is a text that must be brought in right here. "The sabbath was made for man," Now a great many people, if they were writing the Scriptures, would change that and say that the Sabbath was made for the Jews, but that isn't what the Bible says. The Bible says that the Sabbath was made for man, MAN. When was it made? Let's go back into Scriptures, way back to the beginning, in the Book of Genesis, Chapter 2, verses 1, 2, and 3. We find this story. "Thus the heavens and the earth were finished, and all the host of them. And on the seventh day God ended his work which he had made; and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had made. And God blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it: because that in it he had rested from all his work which God created and made." According to the Bible then, the Sabbath was made way back in the beginning for man. Now how many men were living when the Sabbath was made? Why, just one, of course, and his name was Adam, and Adam was not a Jew. It was 2500 years after Adam was made before the first Jews appeared. But God made the Sabbath at creation and made it for man. Once again, that's a collective noun meaning all mankind, all men and women everywhere, for all time. The Sabbath is for everybody. Now I hope that you'll see that today, friends. I hope you'll understand it. This is not a fantastic fanatical new message. No, indeed, this message is as old as the Bible, as old as the world. Talk about old-time religion; the old time way is the Sabbath-keeping way. That's what the Bible taught from long long ago.
Now the second excuse some people give as a reason for not keeping the Sabbath is this. "Oh, any day will do as long as a person is sincere." Did you notice when we read these verses from Genesis 2 that the Scripture says that it was the seventh day. He rested on the seventh day. He sanctified it. He hallowed it. That means that He took this day and set it apart for a sacred use. That's what sanctify means, to set apart for sacred use. Now it didn't say a seventh day, it said the seventh day. Let me use an illustration here that I think you'll remember. It's very important. You'll hear this thing over and over, "any day will do as long as you're sincere." That's not what the Bible says, though, and this may help you to understand the thing clearly.
Suppose we lined up seven ladies right here in front of this microphone, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, right on down to the end and there is my little brown-haired wife at the end, and all of them here total up seven. We'll number them just as God did in creation. The evening and the morning were the first day, evening and morning were the second day, and one was set apart, the seventh. Let's let the seventh day be represented by my wife at the end of this line of seven ladies. She's the seventh lady right on the end. Suppose I said, "Now, friends, I have a new theory. I don't think it makes any difference which of these seven is my wife. Just any one will do and I'm going to prove it to you. We'll start over here and I'll start counting in the middle of this group, 1, 2, 3, and then back to the other end, 4, 5, 6, 7 , I end up counting on lady No. 4 and say, "That one can be my wife. It won't make any difference as long as I'm sincere about it." What would you think about that, friends? Well, I'm not too concerned about what you would think; I'm more concerned about what you'd do. You'd run me off the air and out of this city because there's something radically wrong with that kind of thinking. One was set apart as my wife by the sacred marriage vows, only one. Its the same thing with the Sabbath. God took it, set it apart, lifted it up above the other days, stamped upon it holiness, and said, "It is My holy day." Now who can say that it doesn't make any difference, friends?
short sermon part 3
Continuing today with our sincere search in the Sabbath question, we'll examine more Bible reasons for keeping the Sabbath commanded by God in the Ten-Commandment Law. We found that the seventh day is Saturday on our modern calendars. In fact, calendars bear witness in every home as to the true Sabbath day. Yes, the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord.
We've been looking into some real reasons why people should keep it and some of the reasons that folk give for not keeping it, on occasion. Here's a reason that some folk give for not keeping the seventh day Sabbath. How do we know that our seventh day is the same one Jesus kept anyway? Well, let's read something now from the book of Luke, chapter 23, beginning with verse 54. "And that day was the preparation, and the Sabbath drew on." Now you read the preceding verses and you'll discover that this was the day Christ was crucified, the day we call Good Friday. Going back to Mark 15:42 which says specifically that the preparation is the day before the Sabbath, we read: "And now when the even was come, because it was the preparation that is, the day before the Sabbath." So friends, we call that day Friday now, and that day was the preparation. I'm reading on now in verse 55, "And that day was the preparation, and the Sabbath drew on. And the women also, which came with him from Galilee, followed after, and beheld the sepulchre, and how his body was laid. And they returned, and prepared species and ointments; and rested the Sabbath day according to the commandment."
There you have the preparation day and then the Sabbath. And then in chapter 24, verse 1, "Now upon the first day of the week, very early in the morning, they came unto the sepulchre, bringing the species which they had prepared, and certain others with them." So in three verses right together you have the description of three days. The first day was the one of His crucifixion, called the preparation day before the Sabbath. The next day is the Sabbath according to the Commandment, and then the next day, it says, was the first day of the week, the day He arose from the dead. Now if you'll turn back to Mark 16:1 and 2, you'll discover that the Scripture teaches that the first day of the week is the day that comes right after the Sabbath. Combining those three verses, we have the weekly cycle preserved. We know exactly the day that Christ kept. The preparation day we call Friday, then there is the Sabbath of the Commandment, the Fourth Commandment, and then immediately following that is the first day of the week. So the day that Christ kept was the day that comes just before the first day of the week. Now that's why God had this recorded here so there could never be a question about it.
Maybe you wonder if the calendar was changed. It really used to worry me, friends, until I looked that up. Down in the library you'll find an encyclopedia that will give all the information on the Sabbath question. I mean the calendar question in relation to the Sabbath. And the encyclopedias make it very clear that no change has been made in the calendar since Christ's day that affects the weekly cycle. Anyone who will bother to go look it up will find out immediately that there is nothing to the change-of-calendar argument at all. From the day of the Romans to our own time the calendar weekly cycle has been preserved perfectly. The Romans gave us our calendar in fact. August was named after Augustus Caesar. Julius Caesar had July named after him. They're the ones who gave us our calendar and you can easily trace it back to the Roman time. History as we think of it today comes to us from the Grecians who lived before the Romans. They gave us the great historian, Herodotus, who is called the father of history. Since this is true, it's easy to trace the calendar back to Rome as any brief study will reveal. Such a study shows that no change has taken place in our weekly cycle. There's no question about it. There's nothing changed in the weekly cycle from the days of Christ until now.
Many have said that they don't keep the Sabbath because Sabbath was changed at the cross to Sunday at the time of the resurrection of Jesus. They believe that when Jesus died, that did away with the Law so that the Sabbath came to an end also. I want to state, friends, that there's no Scripture at all to support that. In case you know of anybody who has such a Scripture, I would be happy to have it and will give one thousand dollars for such a Scripture because I know it just simply isn't in the Bible. In fact, we have something here in the Bible that teaches just the opposite. The Bible shows that Christ didn't change the Sabbath at His death or resurrection and He taught His disciples, in fact, that there could be no change of the Sabbath. Reading now Matthew 24:20. "But pray ye that your flight be not in the winter, neither on the Sabbath day." Christ was teaching here about things to come in the future. He told them that Jerusalem would be destroyed. There wouldn't be one stone left upon another and then he said, "Pray that you won't have to flee on the Sabbath day." Now Christ knew that Jerusalem would be destroyed in AD 70, forty years after he ascended. Why did He tell them to pray their flight would not be on the Sabbath? Friends, Christ intended for His followers to be keeping that Sabbath forty years after He had gone back to heaven, just as He intended for them to be keeping it down here in this present age.
A lot of people say, "Well, I keep Sunday in honor of the resurrection." I suppose that's one of the most common statements made. Certainly none of us would want to say anything that would detract from the beauty and glory of the resurrection. It was, indeed, a glorious event. We're grateful for it. It's a very wonderful thing to happen. But when it comes to something so important as a commandment of God, then we must have the Scripture for it. So, with all kindness and all firmness, I say, "Where is the Scripture that tells us we should keep the first day of the week in honor of the resurrection?" Friends, we honor God by obeying Him. That's what Jesus said. John 15:14, "Ye are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you." We honor Him by obeying Him; not inventing our own holy day, not substituting some man-made law or day in place of something that God instituted. It is obedience that counts. The Bible does give a memorial to the resurrection. You'll find it in Romans 6: 4-6. The Lord says specifically that baptism is a memorial of the resurrection. Baptism is commanded in honor of the resurrection and not Sunday keeping. Sunday keeping in honor of the resurrection is man's idea, not God's at all.
Sometimes when people come up to the Sabbath question, they say, "Well, I keep every day holy." I think we ought to just state plainly, friends, that it's impossible to do that. It's impossible for anybody to keep everyday holy; in fact, it's impossible to keep anything holy unless it was made holy by God Himself. Suppose a man was wearing a black suit and he says, I'm going to keep this black suit nice and white. Could he do that? Why, of course not. You can't keep a black suit white because it wasn't white to begin with. Neither can a person keep a day holy that was never made holy to begin with. The difference between the Sabbath and any other day is the difference in the Bible and any other book. One is man-made; the other is God-made. Which will you take?
The difference between the Sabbath and any other day is the difference in a piece of cloth and the flag. Here's a white handkerchief and here's a flag; both of them are cloth. It would be possible for me to have a handkerchief made from the same kind of material, but there's a great deal of difference in the two pieces of cloth. One of them has been set aside and stamped as something special. Thirteen alternative stripes of red and white, fifty stars on a field of blue, sets this piece of cloth apart from all other pieces of cloth. It means something. And it's the same thing with the Sabbath. The Lord made one of His ordinary pieces of cloth or days, and He lifted it high above the others and He stamped upon it something sacred. It became His Sabbath. He said, "I've set this apart. It's a holy day. Keep it holy; lift it up; it's My banner; always hold it high."
The Lord is not pleased with people who trample upon sacred things. If I took the flag down from its stand and threw it on the ground and began to trample on it, you wouldn't permit it, would you? If you would, you're not worthy of the name "American." You would rightly say, "What's the matter with you? That flag represents America!" Well, that's the way it is with God's Sabbath, friends. A sacred heart of His law, the commandment, He set apart and lifted up. He wants us to keep our feet off holy things. That's what the Bible says in Isaiah 58:13. "If thou turn away thy foot from the Sabbath, from doing thy pleasure on my holy day;" (in our language, we would say, get your foot off the Sabbath, we don't use the expression, turn away thy foot). If somebody puts his foot on something, we say, "Get your foot off!" but the Lord said, "If you want to be blessed, get your foot off My Sabbath, a holy sacred thing." That's the first thing to do. Then, He says, I can bless you. Read on down through verse 14 and see how God promises a blessing to those who stop trampling upon sacred things, and especially upon His Sabbath.
Suppose an alien came over and wanted to be naturalized to this country, the day he went in to take his final naturalization test, the American flag was hanging nearby and he put it on the floor and stood on it. Don't you imagine the officer in charge would angrily exclaim, "Well, the first thing you'll have to learn is to get off the American flag! What's the matter with you?" Well, friends, that's what God is saying here. Take your feet off holy things if you want to be blessed. That's a very serious crime against heaven.
Did you know that the Lord foresaw the apostasy of our day? Read it in Ezekiel 22:26. He knew these things were coming. He said here, "Her priests have violated my law, and have profaned mine holy things: they have put no difference between the holy and profane, neither have they shewed difference between the unclean and the clean, and have hid their eyes from my sabbaths, and I am profaned among them." Friends, this may come as a real shock to you, but I pray God that you'll not shrug it off lightly and say, "Well, that's the way he believes; I'll believe as I wish." I pray God that you'll get on your knees and give this thing deeper study. As you do, you'll become convinced that somewhere back there in the streams of time the whole world made a wrong turn. The whole world has gone astray on a direct plain commandment of God. Many are following along today innocently, not asking questions, just supposing that Sunday keeping is right. Of course, God understands that. But, friends, you ask your pastor, ask religious leaders that you know, look it up in the encyclopedias, study the Scriptures, see if it's true. Demand Scripture for evidence.
I want to say again that this is too solemn a thing to treat lightly. Suppose somebody today stood up in your city and said, "I have the light. It's all right to steal." Would you take that lightly? No, indeed, you'd say, "Where does your light come from? You show me. That involves a commandment of God." We ought to feel the same way about the Sabbath. God has given a commandment. If somebody says differently from that commandment, you say, "I'm from Missouri. Show me." It could cost us our eternal salvation if we're wrong.
Did you know the Lord promises to keep the Sabbath with all the redeemed people in the Kingdom of Heaven? We read it in Isaiah 66:22 and 23. "For as the new heavens and the new earth, which I will make, shall remain before me, saith the Lord, so shall your seed and your name remain. And it shall come to pass, that from one new moon to another, and from one Sabbath to another, shall all flesh come to worship before me, saith the Lord." There it is. God's plan, way back in the beginning, was exactly the same; it never changed. When the time came for Him to write the ten commandment law, He put His Sabbath right into the middle of it because His plan was not changed. The years passed by. Jesus was born. But God's plan regarding the Sabbath had not changed because Jesus kept the Sabbath; the disciples followed next and they keep the Sabbath and taught Sabbath-keeping. Once more, the centuries passed by, on past our day and right on into the kingdom of God and, according to the Scriptures, Sabbath keeping will still be a part of God's great plan, because the redeemed will keep it there.
Thanks for all of those Jason, I will read them later. Again, I would appreciate if you could quote your sources.
I will say this about Mark 15, which I notice has been used here - Mark is writing this after being a missionary to the gentiles for a number of years. He is essentially writing this Gospel for them to read as a record of the life of Christ. Why, after preaching to the gentiles for many years does Mark need to explain to them what the preparation day is?
is this a rhetorical question ?
Read Mark 15 again. In it, he explains what the preparation day is - why would he need to do this if he had been preaching and worshiping with the people for an extended period of time?