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”.
"The old Testament taught Sabbath-keeping for Gods chosen 12 tribes of the Jewish ancestry. this teaching was never extrapolated to the first Christians of the new testament."
The Above Quote is a laughable speculation based on ancient documentation missing testimony of Jesus. The quote of speculation is based on recognized Roman Gospel Cannon. Below is a quote that existed in Roman Cannon prior to the 3rd century councils which conviened in Rome.
"Except ye Fast from the world and it's evil ways, ye shall in no wise find the kingdom; and except ye keep the Sabbath and cease your haste to gather riches, ye shall not see the Father-Mother in heaven." Gospel of holy 12
The Gospel of holy 12 is the written Gospel that the 4 bible gospels originated from.
Because the G-12 text exists and captures correctly Jesus teaching his followers to keep the sabbath, it is clearly a lie of speculation to claim that the Sabbath was never transfered to the Christians since Jesus was a preacher to Jews and Gentiles and above his message can be clearly read due to it being preserved. It would also be a true statement to claim it was Christians who abandoned much of what Jesus said which is why they are a denominationally divided clueless spirit of truth lacking mess even unto today.
Unless Seventh day Adventists and Catholics alike find the spirit of truth within them, they will all be Catholics using Catholic Doctrine building diversified speculations of their meansings while lacking truth and not saving a soul. Only a true witness will deliver souls! Jesus was not meant to be the only true witness. If you keep the commandments of God, you will have the testimony of Jesus (true witness) and yes you will deliver souls by posessing a spirit of truth, in spirit and in truth as the true worshippers of God are said to be!
Thank goodness for your reply! Now I know that I can't trust the Bible alone in order to find salvation and doctrine. What a relief.
Well, the "Clear word Bible" is a devotional kind of a Bible, a Bible of paraphrases, same as The Living Bible, for example. As for EGW's writings, sure, first comes the Bible and then EGW, not the other way round, and both should be read considering the context at all times.
Some thoughts to think of:
@ God created Sabbath before the Jewish nation developed;
@ He wrote by His finger the 10 commandments, so who am I to say that what He wrote by Himself, is wrong;
@ Jesus kept the Sabbath day, even by His death He kept it holy, and people who call themselves Christians are supposed to be the followers of Christ;
@ it's said the Sabbath would be kept in the New Jerusalem as well;
@ besides, many things in the nature can be explained, but the 7-day cycle, cannot. God doesn't need an explanation to everything - He wanted the 7 days and He created them. Same - He wanted the 7th day as Sabbath and rest day, so it is, no matter we keep it or not, He keeps it first of all.
@ sunday-keepers do not keep sunday as a sabbath, they rush to shops and wherever, keep themselves busy etc., so that's not a sabbath to them, even now, when the sunday law is being enforced slowly slowly in many places already.
that's what i wanted to emphasize, because in the article, it's mentioned that sda-s have created a new Bible called like that, but that's like a devotional and a paraphrase, same as EGW did many times in her writings - paraphrasing
When the "Clear Word" was originally released, it was essentially marketed as a version of the bible and was called the "Clear Word Bible". After an enormous amount of criticism, it was withdrawn from sale and re-released and the clear word commentary. My question is this - how many people read the clear word INSTEAD of a Bible because they see it as acceptable to do that. You can go to some churches and when the preacher is reading a verse, people in the congregation are following along in their clear word. For goodness sake, it is sold and advertised in the Bible section of SDA
stores and publications!
Revelation 22:18-19 "18 I warn everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book: if anyone adds to them, God will add to him the plagues described in this book, 19 and if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God will take away his share in the tree of life and in the holy city, which are described in this book."
In the words of a preacher I heard once - I wouldn't want to be standing next to anyone who has had anything to do with the publication of the clear word in the judgement.
thanks for those thoughts.
@ There is no record of sabbath keeping before the delivery of the 10 commandments. This is also true of the book of Job, which is commonly believed to be the oldest book in the Bible by date of writing. Surely, if the sabbath was the most important commandment, we would hear about it throughout the Pentateuch and book of Job prior to the delivery of the commandments.
@ God also commanded observance of Passover - was He wrong on that too? Or are we not required to keep that because of it being replaced?
@ Jesus was also circumcised. I hope you are too seeing as we are trying to do everything He did. He also healed the blind by spitting into dust to create clay and rub it in the blind mans eyes. You must be doing that too. Or could it be that Jesus lived the law that we may be free from it?
@ We will be flying in the New Jerusalem as well. The Lion will lay down with the Lamb. Don't see that happening at the moment.
@ What is a day? It is the amount of time it takes for the earth to spin once on it's axis. A day is different for every celestial body in the universe. No wonder early Christians thought the entire universe revolved around the earth! How do you observe the sabbath at the North pole, or South pole where a day can go on for a few months as can a night?
@Sunday keepers do not keep the Sunday as a sabbath - because it is a different celebration. There has certainly been misunderstanding in various churches about this, but simply put, nost Sunday churches do not believe in the requirement to keep any sabbath.
Please do yourself a favor and find where in the NT is specifically says that a Christian must keep the sabbath as a command. You might be surprised at what you find (or don't find).
The Sabbath and Christ. Scripture reveals that, as truly as the Father, Christ was the Creator (see 1 Cor. 8:6; Heb. 1:1, 2; John 1:3). So He was the One who set the seventh day apart as a day of rest for humanity.
In time Christ associated the Sabbath with His redemptive as well as His creative work. As the great "I AM" (John 8:58; Ex. 3:14) He incorporated the Sabbath in the Decalogue as a forceful reminder of this weekly worship appointment with the Creator. And He added another reason for the observance of the Sabbath: The redemption of His people (Deut. 5:14, 15). So the Sabbath marks those who have accepted Jesus as Creator and Saviour.
Christ's twofold role as Creator and Redeemer makes it obvious why He claimed that as the Son of Man, He "is also Lord of the Sabbath" (Mark 2:28). With such authority, He could have disposed of the Sabbath if He had wanted to, but He did not. On the contrary He applied it to all human beings, saying, "The Sabbath was made for man" (verse 27).
Throughout His earthly ministry Christ exemplified for us faithful Sabbathkeeping. It was "His custom" to worship on the Sabbath (Luke 4:16). His participation in Sabbath services reveals that He endorsed it as a day of worship.
So concerned was Christ for the sacredness of the Sabbath that when He spoke about the persecution to take place after His ascension, He counseled His disciples regarding it. "Pray,' He said, "that your flight may not be in winter or on the Sabbath" (Matt. 24:20). This clearly implied, as Jonathan Edwards noted, "that even then Christians were bound to a strict observation of the Sabbath."
When Christ finished His work of Creation—His first great act in world history—He rested on the seventh day. This rest signified completion and accomplishment. He did much the same at the end of His earthly ministry, when He completed His second great act in history. On Friday afternoon, the sixth day of the week, Christ finished His redemptive mission on earth. His last words were "'It is finished!'" (John 19:30). Scripture emphasizes that when He died, "it was Preparation Day, and the Sabbath was about to begin" (Luke 23:54, NIV). Following His death, He rested in a tomb, thus symbolizing that He had accomplished the redemption of the human race.
The Sabbath and the Apostles. The disciples greatly respected the Sabbath. This was evident at the time of Christ's death. When the Sabbath arrived, they interrupted their burial preparations and
"rested on the Sabbath according to the commandment,' with plans to continue this work on Sunday, "the first day of the week" (Luke 23:56; 24:1).
As had Christ, the apostles worshiped on the seventh-day Sabbath. In his evangelistic travels Paul attended the synagogue on the Sabbath, and preached Christ (Acts 13:14; 17:1, 2; 18:4). Even the Gentiles invited him to preach the word of God on the Sabbath (Acts 13:42, 44). In localities where there was no synagogue, he searched for the place customary for Sabbath worship (Acts 16:13). As Christ's participation in Sabbath services indicated His acceptance of the seventh day as the special day for worship, so did Paul's.
This apostle's faithful observance of the weekly Sabbath stood in sharp contrast to his attitude towards the annual ceremonial sabbaths. He made it clear that Christians were under no obligation to keep these yearly rest days because Christ had nailed the ceremonial laws to the cross (see Chapter 18 of this book). Said he, "Therefore let no one judge you in food or in drink, or regarding a festival or a new moon or sabbaths, which are a shadow of things to come, but the substance is of Christ" (Col. 2:16, 17). Since "the context [of this passage] deals with ritual matters, the sabbaths here referred to are the ceremonial sabbaths of the Jewish annual festivals 'which are a shadow,' or type, of which the fulfillments were to come in Christ."
Likewise, in Galatians Paul remonstrated against the observing of the requirements of the ceremonial law. He said, "You observe days, and months, and seasons, and years! I am afraid I have labored over you in vain" (Gal. 4:10, 11, RSV).
Many are under the impression that John was referring to Sunday when he stated he was "in the Spirit on the Lord's day" (Rev. 1:10). In the Bible, however, the only day referred to as the Lord's special possession is the Sabbath. Christ stated, "The seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord your God" (Ex. 20:10); later calling it "My holy day" (Isa. 58:13). And Christ called Himself "Lord of the Sabbath" (Mark 2:28). Since, in the Scripture, the only day the Lord calls His own is the seventh-day Sabbath, it seems logical to conclude that it was the Sabbath to which John was referring. Certainly there is no Biblical precedent to indicate he would apply that term to the first day of the week, or Sunday.
Nowhere does the Bible command us to observe any weekly day other than the Sabbath. It declares no other weekly day blessed or holy. Nor does the New Testament indicate that God has changed the Sabbath to any other day of the week.
On the contrary, Scripture reveals that God intended that His people should observe the Sabbath throughout eternity: "'As the new heavens and the new earth which I will make will remain before me,' says the Lord, 'so shall your descendants
and your name remain. . . . From one New Moon to another, and from one Sabbath to another, all flesh shall come to worship before Me,' says the Lord" (Isa. 66:22, 23).
Okay, so here we go!!! Col. 2:16,17 - You interpretation here is questinoable. Even according to SDA scholars, the interpretation is festivals (yearly), new moons (monthly) and sabbath days (weekly) - note I have used 'sabbath days'. This is because in the majority of translations, this is what it literally says.
Let me make this point clearly - in no place in the NT is the word 'ceremonial' placed in front of the word 'law' or 'laws'. That includes where the 'law was nailed to the cross'. For some fun, of the 613 commandments in the OT, can you please list those of which that are 'ceremonial laws', so I know which elements of the law are not required.
I completely agree that no other day is instructed to be observe weekly (there are requirements for other days pertaining to other celebrations). That is my point. The NT does not command Sunday. It also does not command Saturday.
PS, when Paul says let no one judge you in food or in drink (that you mention above), what is he talking about?
Also, I haven't answered all of your points, but I don't dispute a sabbath requirement of OT Jews or Jews at the time of Christ. The period of time that I personally believe is key is the time of Christ's ascension I have studied this and cannot find any reference to Sabbath other than as a marker of time, after this event. Your reference to Paul indicate not so much that Paul worshiped on Sabbath, but more so that that is where all of the Jews were on sabbath, which was the best opportunity to evangelize When the Jews rejected the message in places, he was approached by the gentiles on his was out of the synagogue typically. His evangelism also occurred on other days.
Lastly, you reference to Isaiah 66 above, it also says from one 'New Moon' to another - does that mean that New Moon sabbaths are to be observed in heaven? If so, why are we not observing them now? You see, many of the post ascension references to sabbaths are tied in with 'New Moons' what does that mean?
i hope you know that the new moon is not a feast day, we have a thread ruining right now concerning feast days
Not sure what you are getting at here. Could you please kindly elaborate?
Maybe this might help...
In response to the recent catholic criticism of Seventh Day Adventist Church Pastor John Carter’s visit, I’m afraid that our roman catholic friend is a little misinformed about the SDA Church and it’s beliefs. So, instead of making this a SDA vs. Catholic debate , allow me to simply present some clear undisputable facts and the reader may research further the subject matter further through both Christian and historical study and judge on there own.
Issue number one, Is Ellen G. White viewed as the leader of the SDA church and do church followers maintain a cultic worship of Sister White and her teachings that even overshadows the holy bible?
While Ellen G. White is seen by most SDA’s as a true prophet and early church founder, the bible and the bible only takes precedence over Sister White’s teachings. If anything Sister White’s books always point back to the bible and she makes it clear not to take her word verbatim but, to search the bible and prayer if there are questions. Nor did Sister White ever proclaim her works to be an authority over the holy bible. So the statement made in the previous article that the Seventh Day Adventist Church is a cultic denomination that places the teachings of Ellen G. White over the holy bible is simply untrue as well as defamatory. SDA’s recognize only Jesus as the author and finisher of our faith.
Over decades many false and derogatory statements have been made about Ellen G. White even from some Adventists from time to time. However, let’s look at Sister White’s phenomenal track record. She was a devout Christian who taught strictly from the bible and even wrote against slavery during a time when it jeopardized her own safety. She became the most prolific female author of all time, her works are registered with the library of congress. She is the most translated female non-fiction author in all of history. She wrote many books on the life and teachings of Jesus. Ellen G. White also taught a health message over 100 years ago that was not being taught anywhere in north America. In fact her health message was initially laughed at, today it is marveled at by medical doctors and scholars for its accuracy. There is much more about E.G. White , but the reader may decide with further research if she was a prophet or not.
Now issue number two, what does it mean to love God? While it is true that love is the greatest of all commandments, Jesus himself also said several times in Matt 24: 25 , Mark13:31, and Luke 21: 33 "Heaven and earth shall pass away but my words will not pass away."
Jesus further explained in his own words regarding all his commandments and all of his word ( the bible) in Matthew 5: 18-19 " For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass , one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law,till all be fulfilled . Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall doand teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven."
And if we look to the words of Jesus himself once again he plainly said in John 14:15 " If You love me. Keep my commandments"
So while love is the greatest of all the commandments , if one truly loves God as Jesus showed us, the example of true Godly love in the life of a Christian is through action and not only words. The same way true love in a human relationship will manifest it's truth through faithful loving actions and good selfless caring deeds.
If we love God we will keep all his laws and commandments which still exist today, because Jesus himself said his law is forever and will never be removed or changed even if this very planet we live on were some how removed or destroyed. The word of god would still remain. Part of that word and law of God is to Remember the true Sabbath Day and keep it holy.
This Sabbath commandment was established way back in Eden when after God created everything , he rested to commune and celebrate with his creations and to to be worshiped and acknowledged is high father , forever friend and creator.
The seventh day Sabbath was observed by Jesus and by his disciples even decades after the crucifixion. Even earl'er reformers and church followers and saints observed the Holy seventh Day Sabbath. It was mankind that decided to change and ignore God's Sabbath. Any attempt to usurp or demote the validity and truth of God's sanctified seventh day Sabbath which has never been changed by God is in direct conflict with God's commandment to love and with God's word.
God is calling each one of us to search for the truth in his word today and is calling us all to return to the true and original Sabbath commandment , thus showing our love for and obedience to God as our creator, friend and savior.