By Gordon Anderson

MEMORY VERSE: “But speak thou the things which become sound doctrine.” Titus 2:1.

STUDY HELP: Testimonies, vol. 1, 23–40.

INTRODUCTION: “God sets before man life and death. He can have his choice. Many desire life, but still continue to walk in the broad road. They choose to rebel against God’s government, notwithstanding His great mercy and compassion in giving His Son to die for them. Those who do not choose to accept of the salvation so dearly purchased, must be punished. But I saw that God would not shut them up in hell to endure endless misery, neither will He take them to heaven; for to bring them into the company of the pure and holy would make them exceedingly miserable. But He will destroy them utterly and cause them to be as if they had not been; then His justice will be satisfied. He formed man out of the dust of the earth, and the disobedient and unholy will be consumed by fire and return to dust again. I saw that the benevolence and compassion of God in this matter should lead all to admire His character and to adore His holy name. After the wicked are destroyed from off the earth, all the heavenly host will say, ‘Amen!’” Early Writings, 221.


  1. On what verses is the doctrine based of the eternally burning hell where the wicked suffer forever? Matthew 3:12; Mark 9:43, 47.

NOTE: In the New Testament, both Jesus and John the Baptist spoke of the fire that could not be quenched. The expressions “inextinguishable” or “cannot be quenched” have been interpreted to mean “eternal” or “everlasting,” but it simply means unquenchable, describing a fire that no one can put out. It will burn so long as there is anything to burn. Both testaments contain examples of everlasting,” unquenchable fire. Jude 7 describes the fires that consumed Sodom and Gomorrah as “everlasting.” Yet these fires are not burning today. They were unquenchable; no man could extinguish them and they burned so long as there was anything to burn. Jeremiah 17:27 describes the fires which would destroy Jerusalem as unquenchable but these fires of destruction have long ceased.

  1. What did Jesus mean by “everlasting fire” and “everlasting punishment”? Matthew 25:41, 46.

NOTE: In both verses, the word “everlasting” derives from a Greek word “aionios.” Some would interpret “everlasting punishment” to mean everlasting punishing. Thus they claim that it is not the sentence that is eternal but the infliction of suffering. In other words, they believe that men will take eternity to die, rather than suffer eternal death. But 2 Thessalonians 1:9 makes clear that it is the destruction, not the suffering that is everlasting. The corresponding Hebrew word is “olam.” The following verses show the use of ‘olam’ (everlasting, eternal) in the Old Testament. Genesis 17:7, 8, 13, 19, Exodus 40:15, Numbers 25:13, Deuteronomy 33:27. The meaning depends on the context. If applied to God, it means “without end.” If applied to men, the context shows how long it will last.

  1. What words are translated as hell in the old King James Version of the Bible?

Sheol: Psalm 9:17. Throughout the Old Testament, the word mistranslated as “hell” is the Hebrew word “Sheol.” It is also translated as “grave” (around 30 times e.g. Psalm 6:5) or “pit” (once in Job 17:16). Sheol means the place or abode of the dead, the grave. The Old Testament writers had no concept of a place in which the dead are still conscious and are suffering eternally.

Hades: Matthew 16:18. This is one of the Greek words that is mistranslated as hell in the New Testament. It is also translated as ‘grave’. This would be a better translation. In classical Greek or in Greek mythology, Hades is the name of the god of the underworld. Many believe that Jesus used the word in this sense in Matthew 16:18, but there is no evidence that the word is ever used in the New Testament other that the common everyday [Koire] meaning the place of the dead, namely the grave.

Gehenna: Mark 9:43–48. “Gehenna” is the Greek word for the Valley of Hinnom south of Jerusalem, also called Tophet. (See Jeremiah 19:2, 6, 11, 12.) It was once used for the worship of Moloch and became a rubbish dump into which the bodies of animals and criminals were thrown. To prevent pestilences, constant fires were kept burning to consume the corrupting material. Tartarus. 2 Peter 2:4. In Greek mythology Tartarus was a place lower than Hades (the place of the dead or the grave) where divine punishment was meted out. In 2 Peter 2:4, the apostle says “For God did not spare the angels who sinned but in chains of darkness having cast them down to tartarus [or symbolically into the deepest abyss] delivered them unto judgment having been kept.” The SDA Bible Commentary, on page 605 of volume 7, comments on this as follows: “Writing to people who lived in a Hellenistic atmosphere, Peter employs a Greek term to convey his thought, but does not thereby endorse either the Greek idea of Tartarus or the popular Jewish concept of Gehenna. Here, Tartarus refers simply to the place of abode to which the evil angels are restricted until the day of judgment.”

NOTE: “God’s word, rightly understood and applied, is a safeguard against spiritualism. An eternally burning hell preached from the pulpit, and kept before the people, does injustice to the benevolent character of God. It presents Him as the veriest tyrant in the universe. This widespread dogma has turned thousands to universalism, infidelity, and atheism. The word of God is plain. It is a straight chain of truth, and will prove an anchor to those who are willing to receive it, even if they have to sacrifice their cherished fables. It will save them from the terrible delusions of these perilous times. Satan has led the minds of the ministers of different churches to cling tenaciously to their popular errors, as he led the Jews in their blindness to cling to their sacrifices, and crucify Christ. The rejection of light and truth leaves men captives, the subjects of Satan’s deception. The greater the light they reject, the greater will be the power of deception and darkness which will come upon them.” Testimonies, vol. 1, 344.

  1. How does the Bible describe the ultimate fate of the wicked? Revelation 20:11–15, Nahum 1:6–9.

NOTE: See Great Controversy, 673.


  1. Does the Bible teach that people are judged at death as to whether they go to heaven or hell? Acts 17:31.

NOTE: See Great Controversy, 548, 549.

  1. What clear indications are we given that our eternal destiny depends on our thoughts, words and actions? Ecclesiastics 12:13, 14, Matthew 12:36, 37.

NOTE: “Avoid anything in look or gesture, word or tone, that savors of pride or self-sufficiency. Guard yourself against a word or look that would exalt yourself, or place your goodness and righteousness in contrast with their failings. Beware of the most distant approach to disdain, overbearing, or contempt. With care avoid every appearance of anger; and though you use plainness of speech, let there be no reproach, no railing accusation, no token of warmth but that of earnest love. Above all, let there be no shadow of hate or ill will, no bitterness or sourness of expression. Nothing but kindness and gentleness can flow from a heart of love. Yet all these precious fruits need not hinder you from speaking in the most serious, solemn manner, as though angels were directing their eyes upon you, and you were acting in reference to the coming judgement.” Testimonies, vol. 2, pages 52, 53.


  1. How does God ensure that all men have the opportunity to know of Him? John 1:9, Romans 1: 19, 20.

NOTE: “Wherever there is an impulse of love and sympathy, wherever the heart reaches out to bless and uplift others, there is revealed the working of God’s Holy Spirit. In the depths of heathenism, men who have had no knowledge of the written law of God, who have never even heard the name of Christ, have been kind to His servants, protecting them at the risk of their own lives. Their acts show the working of a divine power. The Holy Spirit has implanted the grace of Christ in the heart of the savage, quickening his sympathies contrary to his nature, contrary to his education. The ‘Light which lighteth every man that cometh into the world’ (John 1:9), is shining in his soul; and this light, if heeded, will guide his feet to the kingdom of God.” Christ’s Object Lessons, 385.

  1. On what basis will God judge people? Romans 2:12–16, Acts 17:30.

NOTE: “Many thousand who have accepted the change made in the day of rest have done so ignorantly, and unwittingly have placed themselves under the banner of the prince of darkness. The Christian church has accepted the false sabbath, but the day of light has now dawned. The times of their ignorance God winked at, but now He commandeth men everywhere to repent. It is demonstrated that no change is necessary in the law of God. Were there a change needed in the law of God, and could such a change be made, the rebellion of Satan would be justified, and the universe would have to concede that Satan was wiser than God, and had a right to supreme authority. But Jesus came to magnify the law and to make it honorable, and His death on Calvary in the sinner’s behalf, proves the immutability of the law of heaven.” Signs of the Times, November 19, 1894.


  1. How was the judgement pictured to Daniel? Daniel 7:9, 10.

NOTE: “As we near the judgement, all will manifest their true character, and it will be made plain to what company they belong. The sieve is moving. Let us not say: Stay Thy hand, O God. The church must be purged, and it will be. God reigns; let the people praise Him. I have not the most distant thought of sinking down. I mean to be right and do right. The judgement is to set, the books are to be opened, and we are to be judged according to our deeds. All the falsehoods that may be framed against me will not make me any worse, nor any better unless they have a tendency to drive me nearer my Redeemer.” Testimonies, vol. 1, 100.

  1. How does the Word of God make clear that God’s judgement begins while the everlasting gospel is still being preached? Revelation 14:6, 7.

NOTE: See Great Controversy, 435, 436.


  1. What does the Bible reveal as the fate of the wicked when Jesus returns? 2 Thessalonians 1:7–9, Revelation 19:19–20.

NOTE: “At the coming of Christ the wicked are blotted from the face of the whole earth, consumed with the spirit of His mouth, and destroyed by the brightness of His glory. Christ takes His people to the city of God, and the earth is emptied of its inhabitants. ‘Behold, the Lord maketh the earth empty, and maketh it waste, and turneth it upside down, and scattereth abroad the inhabitants thereof.’ ‘The land shall be utterly emptied, and utterly spoiled; for the Lord hath spoken this word.’ ‘Because they have transgressed the laws, changed the ordinance,broken the everlasting covenant, therefore hath the curse devoured the earth, and they that dwell therein are desolate; therefore the inhabitants of the earth are burned.’[Isaiah 24:1, 3, 5, 6.]” Spirit of Prophecy, vol. 4, 474.

  1. How does the Bible show that there will be no future second chance for mankind? Revelation 22:11–12.

NOTE: Among the differing concepts of the millennium is the view that Christ will reign on earth and world conditions will improve. Human life span will lengthen though people will still die. Those living during this time will hear and accept the gospel until the final rebellion when God will intervene and take control. See Great Controversy, 321.

  1. Will Christ reign over an improved earth or make all things new? Revelation 21:1–4, Isaiah 65:17, 2 Peter 3:13.

NOTE: “This same earth, freed from the curse of sin, is to be man’s eternal home. Of the earth the Scripture says, that God ‘created it not in vain, He formed it to be inhabited.’ Isaiah 45:18. And ‘whatsoever God doeth, it shall be for ever.’ Ecclesiastes 3:14. So in the Sermon on the Mount the Saviour declared, ‘Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.’ Matthew 5:5. So the psalmist long before had written, ‘The meek shall inherit the earth; and shall delight themselves in the abundance of peace.’ Psalm 37:11. With this agree the words of the Scripture, ‘The righteous shall be recompensed in the earth.’ They ‘shall inherit the land, and dwell therein for ever.’ Proverbs 11:31; Psalm 37:29. The fires of the last day are to destroy ‘the heavens and the earth, which are now;’ but there shall come forth ‘new heavens and a new earth.’ 2 Peter 3:7, 13. The heavens and the earth will be made new.” Story of Jesus, 183, 184.


By Gordon Anderson

MEMORY VERSE: “Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air and so shall we ever be with the Lord.” 1 Thessalonians 4:17.

STUDY HELP: Great Controversy, 635–647.

INTRODUCTION: “Moses upon the mount of transfiguration was a witness to Christ’s victory over sin and death. He represented those who shall come forth from the grave at the resurrection of the just. Elijah, who had been translated to heaven without seeing death, represented those who will be living upon the earth at Christ’s second coming, and who will be ‘changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump’; when ‘this mortal must put on immortality,’ and ‘this corruptible must put on incorruption.’ 1 Corinthians 15:51–53. Jesus was clothed with the light of heaven, as He will appear when He shall come ‘the second time without sin unto salvation.’ For He will come ‘in the glory of His Father with the holy angels.’ Hebrews 9:28; Mark 8:38. The Savior’s promise to the disciples was now fulfilled. Upon the mount the future kingdom of glory was represented in miniature, Christ the King. . . .” Desire of Ages, 421.


  1. How did God make clear that death is the consequence of sin? Genesis 2:16, 17.

NOTE: “Satan deceives many with the plausible theory that God’s love for His people is so great that He will excuse sin in them; he represents that while the threatenings of God’s word are to serve a certain purpose in His moral government, they are never to be literally fulfilled. But in all His dealings with His creatures God has maintained the principles of righteousness by revealing sin in its true character—by demonstrating that its sure result is misery and death.” Patriarchs and Prophets, 522.

“Evil, sin, and death were not created by God; they are the result of disobedience, which riginated in Satan.” Testimonies, vol. 5, 503.

  1. Why was that death sentence on Adam not immediately executed? Genesis 3:21.

NOTE: The death sentence was carried out that very day, but an innocent substitute was killed instead to provide a covering for man’s nakedness. Thus was brought home to the guilty pair the true consequence of sin and that their only hope lay in the sacrifice of Christ on their behalf. “After Adam and Eve had sinned, they were under bondage to the law. Because of their transgression they were sentenced to suffer death, the penalty of sin. But Christ, the propitiation for our sins, declared: ‘I will stand in Adam’s place. I will take upon myself the penalty of his sin. He shall have another trial. I will secure for him a probation. He shall have the privileges and the opportunities of a free man, and be allowed to exercise his God-given power of choice. I will postpone the day of his arraignment for trial.’” Atlantic Union Gleaner, August 19, 1903.


  1. How certain can we be that Christ rose from the dead? 1 Corinthians 15:4, 8.

NOTE: When Frank Morrison set out to examine the life of Christ, he did so “with a very definite feeling that, if I may put it so, His history rested upon very insecure foundations.” While he had a deep respect and even reverent regard for the person of Christ, he had been taught to believe that “miracles do not happen.” He set out to study the last seven days of Christ’s life, simply because the accounts of those days “seemed remarkably free from the miraculous element which on scientific grounds I held suspect.” Carefully he examined all the alternatives to the resurrection, that Joseph of Arimathea removed the body, that the body was removed by order of Pontius Pilate, that the body was removed by the Jewish authorities to prevent possible generation of the tomb, that Jesus recovered in the tomb, that the women went to the wrong tomb, that no one went to the grave and the stories were fabricated later. One by one, he had to reject all these possibilities. He concluded: “There certainly is a deep and profoundly historical basis for that much disputed sentence in the Apostles’ Creed, ‘The third day he rose again from the dead.’” The result of his investigations was the book, Who Moved the Stone?

  1. When Christ died, did He go to heaven? John 20:17.

NOTE: “Christ did not go to heaven directly after His death. It is claimed by some that when He died, although his body was laid in the grave, His spirit went to heaven. But after His resurrection He said to Mary, ‘Touch me not; for I am not yet ascended to My Father: but go to My brethren, and say unto them, I ascend unto My Father, and your Father; and to My God, and your God.’ If, after He bowed his head and died, He went directly to heaven, certainly He did ascend to his Father. Christ remained in the grave the allotted period of time, and then He took up His life again. In the hearing of the people He had said, ‘Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up,’ referring to His body. He came forth from the grave a conqueror, proclaiming, over the rent sepulchre of Joseph, ‘I am the resurrection, and the life.’” Review and Herald, April 26, 1898.

  1. Did Christ Jesus do anything between His death on the cross and the Resurrection? 1 Peter 3:18, 20.

NOTE: Some have claimed that Christ spent the time between His crucifixion and His resurrection preaching the Gospel of salvation to those who died in Old Testament times. (Many of these same people also claim that Christ accompanied the repentant thief to Paradise at the same time.) The “He” in 1 Peter 3:19 is Christ. The “which” refers to the Spirit. (See verse 18.) Who were “the spirits in prison”? Nowhere does the Bible describe death as a prison. Galatians 3: 22, 23 describes sin as imprisonment. 1 Peter 3:20 explains that it was disobedience that imprisoned these people. These were people shut up in the prison house of sin with no power to save themselves. When did Christ preach to these people? 1Peter 3:20 explains that these were the ones alive during the 120 years while Noah was building the Ark. How did He preach to them? He preached to them through the Spirit. Verses 19, 20. Noah was the mouthpiece of the Spirit. See 2 Peter 2:5. What was the outcome of this preaching? Only a few, eight souls, were saved. Verse 20.


  1. Why has death passed upon all men? Romans 5:12.

NOTE: “The wickedness that fills our world is the result of Adam’s refusal to take God’s word as supreme. He disobeyed, and fell under the temptation of the enemy. ‘Sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned.’ God declared, ‘The soul that sinneth, it shall die.’ And, apart from the plan of redemption, human beings are doomed to death. ‘All have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.’” Review and Herald, March 15, 1906.

  1. Will a person die for his own sins or for Adam’s sin? Ezekiel 18:19, 20.

NOTE: “It is inevitable that children should suffer from the consequences of parental wrongdoing, but they are not punished for the parents’ guilt, except as they participate in their sins.” Patriarchs and Prophets, 306.


  1. What is the link between the resurrection of Christ and the Christian’s hope of resurrection? 1 Corinthians 15:12, 19.

NOTE: “At the very beginning of his first letter [Peter] the aged servant of God ascribed to his Lord a tribute of praise and thanksgiving. ‘Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,’ he exclaimed, ‘which according to His abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you, who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.” Acts of the Apostles, 517.

See also Prophets and Kings, 445, 446.

  1. How did Jesus Himself express the truth that all men will be raised from the dead? John 5:28, 29.

NOTE: “In consequence of Adam’s sin, death passed upon the whole human race. All alike go down into the grave. And through the provisions of the plan of salvation, all are to be brought forth from their graves. ‘There shall be a resurrection of the dead, both of the just and unjust;’ ‘for as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.’ Acts 24:15; 1 Corinthians 15:22. But a distinction is made between the two classes that are brought forth. ‘All that are in the graves shall hear His voice, and shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation.’ John 5:28, 29. They who have been ‘accounted worthy’ of the resurrection of life are ‘blessed and holy.’ ‘On such the second death hath no power.’ Revelation 20:6. But those who have not, through repentance and faith, secured pardon, must receive the penalty of transgression, ‘the wages of sin.’ They suffer punishment varying in duration and intensity, ‘according to their works,’ but finally ending in the second death. Since it is impossible for God, consistently with His justice and mercy, to save the sinner in his sins, He deprives him of the existence which his transgressions have forfeited and of which he has proved himself unworthy. Says an inspired writer: ‘Yet a little while, and the wicked shall not be: yea, thou shalt diligently consider his place, and it shall not be.’ And another declares: ‘They shall be as though they had not been.’ Psalm 37:10; Obadiah 16. Covered with infamy, they sink into hopeless, eternal oblivion.” Great Controversy, 544, 545.


  1. Who was the first person to be raised from the dead? Romans 5:14. Compare Jude verse 9 and Matthew 17:1, 3.

NOTE: See Patriarchs and Prophets, 478.

  1. What other resurrection has taken place also? Matthew 27:50, 53.

NOTE: “As Christ arose, He brought from the grave a multitude of captives. The earthquake at His death had rent open their graves, and when He arose, they came forth with Him. They were those who had been co-laborers with God, and who at the cost of their lives had borne testimony to the truth. Now they were to be witnesses for Him who had raised them from the dead. During His ministry, Jesus had raised the dead to life. He had raised the son of the widow of Nain, and the ruler’s daughter and Lazarus. But these were not clothed with immortality. After they were raised, they were still subject to death. But those who came forth from the grave at Christ’s resurrection were raised to everlasting life. They ascended with Him as trophies of His victory over death and the grave. These, said Christ, are no longer the captives of Satan; I have redeemed them. I have brought them from the grave as the first fruits of My power, to be with Me where I am, nevermore to see death or experience sorrow. These went into the city, and appeared unto many, declaring, Christ has risen from the dead, and we be risen with Him. Thus was immortalized the sacred truth of the resurrection. The risen saints bore witness to the truth of the words, ‘Thy dead men shall live, together with My dead body shall they arise.’ Their resurrection was an illustration of the fulfillment of the prophecy, ‘Awake and sing, ye that dwell in dust: for thy dew is as the dew of herbs, and the earth shall cast out the dead.’ Isaiah 26:19.” Desire of Ages, 786.


  1. How did Job express his confidence in the resurrection? Job 19:25, 27.

  2. When will the dead in Christ be raised? 1 Corinthians 15:23, 52; 1 Thessalonians 4:16.

NOTE: “Nowhere in the Sacred Scriptures is found the statement that the righteous go to their reward or the wicked to their punishment at death. The patriarchs and prophets have left no such assurance. Christ and His apostles have given no hint of it. The Bible clearly teaches that the dead do not go immediately to heaven. They are represented as sleeping until the resurrection. 1 Thessalonians 4:14; Job 14:10–12. In the very day when the silver cord is loosed and the golden bowl broken (Ecclesiastes 12:6), man’s thoughts perish. They that go down to the grave are in silence. They know no more of anything that is done under the sun. Job 14:21. Blessed rest for the weary righteous! Time, be it long or short, is but a moment to them. They sleep; they are awakened by the trump of God to a glorious immortality. ‘For the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible. . . . So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory.’ 1 Corinthians 15:52–54. As they are called forth from their deep slumber, they begin to think just where they ceased. The last sensation was the pang of death; the last thought, that they were falling beneath the power of the grave. When they arise from the tomb, their first glad thought will be echoed in the triumphal shout: ‘O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?’ Verse 55.” Great Controversy, 549, 550.


By Gordon Anderson

MEMORY VERSE: “Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness?” Romans 6:16.

STUDY HELP: Steps to Christ, 17–22.

INTRODUCTION: “More people than we think are longing to find the way to Christ. Those who preach the last message of mercy should bear in mind that Christ is to be exalted as the sinner’s refuge. Some ministers think that it is not necessary to preach repentance and faith; they take it for granted that their hearers are acquainted with the gospel, and that matters of a different nature must be presented in order to hold their attention. But many people are sadly ignorant in regard to the plan of salvation; they need more instruction upon this all-important subject than upon any other.” Gospel Workers, 158.


  1. How does Paul describe the mind of the one who is without Christ? Romans 8:7.

NOTE: See Steps to Christ, 18.

  1. What is the inevitable consequence of a life of sin? Romans 6:23, first part.

NOTE: “We are required to obey the law of God, and are not only instructed as to the penalty of disobedience, but we have narrated for our benefit and warning the history of Adam and Eve in Paradise, and the sad results of their disobedience of God’s commands. The account is full and explicit. The law given to man in Eden is recorded, together with the penalty accruing in case of its disobedience. Then follows the story of the temptation and fall, and the punishment inflicted upon our erring parents. Their example is given us as a warning against disobedience, that we may be sure that the wages of sin is death, that God’s retributive justice never fails, and that He exacts from His creatures a strict regard for His commandments. When the law was proclaimed at Sinai, how definite was the penalty annexed, how sure was punishment to follow the transgression of that law, and how plain are the cases recorded in evidence of that fact!” Testimonies, vol. 4, 11, 12.

  1. What did the Lord place between Satan and mankind? Genesis 3:15.

NOTE: “God declares: ‘I will put enmity.’ This enmity is not naturally entertained. When man transgressed the divine law, his nature became evil, and he was in harmony, and not at variance, with Satan. There exists naturally no enmity between sinful man and the originator of sin. Both became evil through apostasy. The apostate is never at rest, except as he obtains sympathy and support by inducing others to follow his example. For this reason fallen angels and wicked men unite in desperate companionship. Had not God specially interposed, Satan and man would have entered into an alliance against Heaven; and instead of cherishing enmity against Satan, the whole human family would have been united in opposition to God.” Great Controversy, 505.


  1. What provision was made to restore to man the opportunity for eternal life? 1 John 4: 9, 10.

NOTE: “Jesus might have remained in heaven, to receive the adoration of the heavenly host, but He did not do this. For man’s sake He stepped down from the throne, laid aside His royal robe, clothed His divinity with humanity, and for our sake became poor, that we through His poverty might be made rich. In assuming humanity, He exalted the fallen race before God, and made it possible for sinful man to become an heir of heaven. Can we wonder that John exclaimed, ‘Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God?’” Signs of the Times, July 28, 1890.

  1. What is the basis of our justification? Romans 5:9.

NOTE: “True repentance will lead a man to bear his guilt himself and acknowledge it without deception or hypocrisy. Like the poor publican, not lifting up so much as his eyes unto heaven, he will smite upon his breast, and cry, ‘God be merciful to me a sinner;’ and those who do acknowledge their guilt will be justified; for Jesus will plead His blood in behalf of the repentant soul. It is no degradation for man to bow down before his Maker and confess his sins, and plead for forgiveness through the merits of a crucified and risen Saviour. It is noble to acknowledge your wrong before Him whom you have wounded by transgression and rebellion. It lifts you up before men and angels; for ‘he that humbleth himself shall be exalted.’” Testimonies, vol. 5, 638.


  1. What change must be seen in the life of the one who has been justified through faith in the blood of Jesus? Romans 6:1, 2.

NOTE: “What is the sinner to be converted from? The transgression of God’s law to obedience of it. But if he is told that he cannot keep the law of God, and that if he should attempt it he would be brought into bondage, to what is he then converted, transgression of the law to a continuance in that transgression? This is absurd. Yet professed ministers of Christ tell the sinner that he is guiltless while disloyal to the law of God. Such conversions are not ratified in heaven.” Signs of the Times, July 18, 1878.


  1. What story did Jesus tell to explain the necessary preparation we must make for heaven? Matthew 22:1, 14.

NOTE: See Christ’s Object Lessons, 311, 312.

  1. What is the evidence that a person knows Christ? 1 John 2:3, 4.

NOTE: “Righteousness is right doing, and it is by their deeds that all will be judged. Our characters are revealed by what we do. The works show whether the faith is genuine. It is not enough for us to believe that Jesus is not an impostor, and that the religion of the Bible is no cunningly devised fable. We may believe that the name of Jesus is the only name under heaven whereby man may be saved, and yet we may not through faith make Him our personal Savior. It is not enough to believe the theory of truth. It is not enough to make a profession of faith in Christ and have our names registered on the church roll. ‘He that keepeth His commandments dwelleth in Him, and He in him. And hereby we know that He abideth in us, by the Spirit which He hath given us.’ ‘Hereby we do know that we know Him if we keep His commandments.’ 1 John 3:24; 2:3. This is the genuine evidence of conversion. Whatever our profession, it amounts to nothing unless Christ is revealed in works of righteousness.” Christ’s Object Lessons, 312.


  1. What change must take place in the life of the Christian? 1 Corinthians 5:7, John 3:3, Psalm 51:10.

NOTE: See Desire of Ages, 280 and See also Steps to Christ, 57, 58.

  1. In what way did Christ portray the growth that should take place in the life of the Christian? Mark 4:26, 29.

NOTE: “The germination of the seed represents the beginning of spiritual life, and the development of the plant is a beautiful figure of Christian growth. As in nature, so in grace; there can be no life without growth. The plant must either grow or die. As its growth is silent and imperceptible, but continuous, so is the development of the Christian life. At every stage of development, our life may be perfect; yet if God’s purpose for us is fulfilled, there will be continual advancement. Sanctification is the work of a lifetime. As our opportunities multiply, our experience will enlarge, and our knowledge increase. We shall become strong to bear responsibility, and our maturity will be in proportion to our privileges.” Christ’s Object Lessons, 65, 66.


  1. What fruit must be seen in the life of the Christian? Galatians 5:22, 24.

NOTE: “The plant does not germinate, grow, or bring forth fruit for itself, but to ‘give seed to the sower, and bread to the eater.’ Isaiah 55:10. So no man is to live unto himself. The Christian is in the world as a representative of Christ, for the salvation of other souls. There can be no growth or fruitfulness in the life that is centered in self. If you have accepted Christ as a personal Savior, you are to forget yourself, and try to help others. Talk of the love of Christ, tell of His goodness. Do every duty that presents itself. Carry the burden of souls upon your heart, and by every means in your power seek to save the lost. As you receive the Spirit of Christ, the Spirit of unselfish love and labor for others, you will grow and bring forth fruit. The graces of the Spirit will ripen in your character. Your faith will increase, your convictions deepen, your love be made perfect. More and more you will reflect the likeness of Christ in all that is pure, noble, and lovely.” Christ’s Object Lessons, 67, 68.

  1. On what are we to feed to promote Christian growth? Matthew 4:4.

NOTE: “By constantly relying upon Christ as our personal Saviour, we shall grow up into Him in all things Who is our head.” Christ’s Object Lessons, 66, 67.

  1. Will the fruit be ripe in the lives of the Christians when Jesus comes? Mark 4:29, 1 John 3:2.

NOTE: “When the character of Christ shall be perfectly reproduced in His people, then He will come to claim them as His own. It is the privilege of every Christian not only to look for but to hasten the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, (2 Peter 3:12, margin). Were all who profess His name bearing fruit to His glory, how quickly the whole world would be sown with the seed of the gospel. Quickly the last great harvest would be ripened, and Christ would come to gather the precious grain.” Christ’s Object Lessons, 69.

Bible Study Guides – “ALL HAVE SINNED”

By Gordon Anderson

MEMORY VERSE: “Little children, let no man deceive you: he that doeth righteousness is righteous, even as He is righteous.” 1 John 3:7.

STUDY HELP: Education, 14–15.

INTRODUCTION: “There are many who in their hearts murmur against God. They say, ‘We inherit the fallen nature of Adam, and are not responsible for our natural imperfections.’ They find fault with God’s requirements, and complain that He demands what they have no power to give. Satan made the same complaint in heaven, but such thoughts dishonor God. And the Lord knoweth our thoughts afar off. He speaks to His people, saying, ‘O my people, what have I done unto thee? And wherein have I wearied thee? Testify against Me.’ ” Signs of the Times, August 29, 1892.


  1. How was man originally created? Genesis 1:27.

NOTE: “When Adam came from the Creator’s hand, he bore, in his physical, mental, and spiritual nature, a likeness to his Maker. ‘God created man in His own image’ (Genesis 1:27), and it was His purpose that the longer man lived the more fully he should reveal this image, the more fully reflect the glory of the Creator. All his faculties were capable of development; their capacity and vigor were continually to increase. Vast was the scope offered for their exercise, glorious the field opened to their research. The mysteries of the visible universe, the ‘wondrous works of Him which is perfect in knowledge’ (Job 37:16) invited man’s study. Face-to-face, heart-to-heart communion with his Maker was his high privilege. Had he remained loyal to God, all this would have been his forever. Throughout eternal ages, he would have continued to gain new treasures of knowledge, to discover fresh springs of happiness, and to obtain clearer and yet clearer conceptions of the wisdom, the power, and the love of God. More and more fully would he have fulfilled the object of his creation, more and more fully have reflected the Creator’s glory.” Education, 15.

  1. How was that image marred? Romans 8:7.

NOTE: “Through sin the divine likeness was marred, and well-nigh obliterated. Man’s physical powers were weakened, his mental capacity was lessened, his spiritual vision dimmed. He had become subject to death.” Education, 15.

  1. Does sinful man still retain the image of God? 1 Corinthians 11:7; Genesis 9:5, 6.

NOTE: “Whatever may be the nation, kindred or tongue, whether a man is white or black, he still bears the image of God, and ‘the proper study of mankind is man,’ viewed from the fact that he is the purchase of the blood of Christ. To show contempt for, to manifest hatred toward any nation, is to reveal the characteristic of Satan. God has placed His estimate upon man in giving Jesus to a life of humiliation, poverty, and self-sacrifice, to contempt, rejection, and death, in order that man, His lost sheep, might be saved.” Signs of the Times, November 20, 1893.

  1. Does God impute guilt to a person for the sins committed by his ancestors? Ezekiel 18:19, 20.

NOTE: Though, because of the presence of sin in the human race, our physical powers are weakened, our mental capacities lessened and our spiritual vision dimmed by sin, yet the Lord does not hold any man but Adam to be guilty of Adam’s sin. We do not inherit sin or its guilt.

“It is inevitable that children should suffer from the consequences of parental wrongdoing, but they are not punished for the parents’ guilt, except as they participate in their sins. It is usually the case, however, that children walk in the steps of their parents. By inheritance and example, the sons become partakers of the father’s sin. Wrong tendencies, perverted appetites, and debased morals, as well as physical disease and degeneracy, are transmitted as a legacy from father to son, to the third and fourth generation. This fearful truth should have a solemn power to restrain men from following a course of sin.” Patriarchs and Prophets, 306.

  1. How did Paul express the truth that each man suffers death for his own personal sins? Romans 5:12.

NOTE: “God declared, ‘The soul that sinneth, it shall die.’ And, apart from the plan of redemption, human beings are doomed to death. ‘All have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.’” Review and Herald, March 15, 1906.

“Our first parents by their disobedience opened the floodgates of woe to the race, and notwithstanding we have before us their sad experience in transgression, and the terrible result, we do not cease to sin; but while we deplore the sin of Adam, which was attended with such fearful consequences, we follow in the same course and realize the penalty of our own sins; for which suffering we alone are accountable.” Forest Park Reporter, March 30, 1879.


  1. How does Paul describe the struggle he experienced to keep the Law of God before he became a Christian? Romans 7:1, 24.

NOTE: “By sin we have been severed from the life of God. Our souls are palsied. Of ourselves, we are no more capable of living a holy life than was the impotent man capable of walking. There are many who realize their helplessness, and who long for that spiritual life which will bring them into harmony with God; they are vainly striving to obtain it. In despair they cry, ‘O wretched man that I am! Who shall deliver me from this body of death?’ Romans 7:24, margin. Let these desponding, struggling ones look up. The Saviour is bending over the purchase of His blood, saying with inexpressible tenderness and pity, ‘Wilt thou be made whole?’ He bids you arise in health and peace. Do not wait to feel that you are made whole. Believe His word, and it will be fulfilled. Put your will on the side of Christ. Will to serve Him, and in acting upon His word you will receive strength. Whatever may be the evil practice, the master passion which through long indulgence binds both soul and body, Christ is able and longs to deliver. He will impart life to the soul that is ‘dead in trespasses.’ Ephesians 2:1. He will set free the captive that is held by weakness and misfortune and the chains of sin.” Desire of Ages, 203.

  1. What was the principle reason why Paul could find no victory in his struggle to keep the Law of God? Romans 7: 25, last part.

NOTE: The words “I myself” are the key to Paul’s dilemma as a Pharisee before he encountered the Lord Jesus. The two Greek words are “ego autos.” The first word simply means “I” but the two words together mean, emphatically, “I alone.” In the context of Romans 7, it effectively means “I on my own” that is, without Christ. Paul is saying, “I alone, without Christ, with the mind serve the Law of God but with the flesh the law of sin and death.” In contrast, notice Galatians 2:20, Philippians 4: 13, Ephesians 4: 23, Romans 8: 10. What “I alone” could never do can be done “through Christ which strengtheneth me.” (For a more detailed consideration of this point, read The Word Was Made Flesh by Ralph Larson, 351 – 364.) See also Christ’s Object Lessons, 201.


  1. Who alone could bring Paul victory in his struggle to obey God’s Law? Romans 7:25, first part.

NOTE: “Paul realized his weakness, and well he might distrust his own strength. Referring to the law, he says, ‘The commandment, which was ordained to life, I found to be unto death.’ He had trusted in the deeds of the law. He says, concerning his own outward life, that as ‘touching the law’ he was ‘blameless;’ and he put his trust in his own righteousness. But when the mirror of the law was held up before him, and he saw himself as God saw him, full of mistakes, stained with sin, he cried out, ‘O wretched man that I am! Who shall deliver me from the body of this death?’ Paul beheld the Lamb of God that taketh away the sin of the world. He heard the voice of Christ saying, ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life; no man cometh unto the Father but by Me.’ He determined to avail himself of the benefits of saving grace, to become dead to trespasses and sins, to have his guilt washed away in the blood of Christ, to be clothed with Christ’s righteousness, to become a branch of the Living Vine. He walked with Christ, and Jesus became to him, not a part of salvation, while his own good deeds were another part, but his all in all, the first and last and best in everything. He had the faith that draws life from Christ, that enabled him to conform his life to that of the divine example. This faith claims nothing for its possessor because of his righteousness, but claims everything because of the righteousness of Christ.”Signs of the Times, November 24, 1890.

  1. Did Christ, when He came to earth, share the common inheritance of mankind? Hebrews 2:17.

NOTE: “Jesus accepted humanity when the race had been weakened by four thousand years of sin. Like every child of Adam He accepted the results of the working of the great law of heredity. What these results were is shown in the history of His earthly ancestors. He came with such a heredity to share our sorrows and temptations, and to give us the example of a sinless life.”Desire of Ages, 49. See also Desire of Ages, 24.

  1. What was a primary purpose of Christ coming to earth “in the likeness of sinful flesh”? Romans 8:3, 4.

NOTE: “Satan declared that it was impossible for the sons and daughters of Adam to keep the law of God, and thus charged upon God a lack of wisdom and love. If they could not keep the law, then there was fault with the Lawgiver. Men who are under the control of Satan repeat these accusations against God, in asserting that men can not keep the law of God. Jesus humbled Himself, clothing His divinity with humanity, in order that He might stand as the head and representative of the human family, and by both precept and example condemn sin in the flesh, and give the lie to Satan’s charges. He was subjected to the fiercest temptations that human nature can know, yet He sinned not; for sin is the transgression of the law. By faith He laid hold upon divinity, even as humanity may lay hold upon infinite power through Him.” Signs of the Times, January 16, 1896.


  1. Why did Paul not claim perfection? (See Philippians 3: 12.) Job 9: 20, 21 and compare Job 1:1, 8; 2:3.

NOTE: Though God Himself described Job as a perfect man, Job himself would not make that claim. Aware of the inadequacy and deceptiveness of human judgment, he knew that he did not possess unerring insight into the state of his soul.

“Let those who feel inclined to make a high profession of holiness, look into the mirror of God’s law, which discovers to us the defects of our character. Those who see the far-reaching claims of the law of God, those who realize that it is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart, will not presume to make the boast of sinlessness, and venture to declare, ‘I am perfect, I am holy.’

‘If we,’ John says, not separating himself from his brethren, ‘say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.’” Signs of the Times, May 23, 1895.

  1. Once we have been justified by God’s grace, can we continue to sin? Romans 6:1. (Read verses 1–6.)

NOTE: “God’s will is expressed in His holy law, and Jesus says, ‘Not every one that saith unto Me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of My Father which is in heaven.’ The law of God is the standard by which character is to be measured, and he whose life is in harmony with that law is worthy to be trusted, but of what value is the testimony of a man whose life and teaching contradict the law of Jehovah? He then measures himself by his

own finite standard, and may claim for himself as much as does the pope of Rome; but in the light of the detector of sin, his character may be wholly wanting. He may claim great spiritual riches, and think that he is in need of nothing, and may boast of the grace of Christ, but at the same time may have turned that precious grace into lasciviousness. This spurious character of religion is on the increase, and many whose hearts are carnal prate of the grace of Christ, while at the same time they openly blaspheme the name of the God of heaven by casting contempt upon the law of God, which rebukes their inconsistent course and detects their unchristlike character.” Review and Herald, August 28, 1894.

  1. What does sin in the life of the professing Christian reveal? 1 John 3:6. (Read verses 3–10.)

NOTE: “It is folly to bid the sinner come to Christ before being convicted of his sin by being brought before the mirror of the law of God. What is the sinner to be converted from? The transgression of God’s law to obedience of it. But if he is told that he cannot keep the law of God, and that, if he should attempt it, he would be brought into bondage, to what is he then converted, from transgression of the law to a continuance in that transgression? This is absurd. Yet professed ministers of Christ tell the sinner that he is guiltless while disloyal to the law of God. Such conversions are not ratified in heaven.” Signs of the Times, July 18, 1878.

Bible Study Guides – “WAR IN HEAVEN”

By Gordon Anderson

MEMORY VERSE: “Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.” John 8:44.

STUDY HELP: Patriarchs and Prophets, 33–43.

INTRODUCTION: “The question is asked, How is the existence of sin reconcilable with the government of a wise, merciful, and omnipotent God? Why was sin permitted to enter heaven? Why was it permitted to take up its abode on the earth to cause discord and suffering? It certainly was not God’s purpose that man should be sinful. He made Adam pure and noble, with no tendency to evil. He placed him in Eden, where he had every inducement to remain loyal and obedient. The law was placed around him as a safeguard. Evil originated with the rebellion of Lucifer. It was brought into heaven when he refused allegiance to God’s law. Satan was the first lawbreaker.” Review and Herald, June 4, 1901.


  1. By what name was Satan known when he was in heaven? Isaiah 14:12.

NOTE: “Lucifer, ‘son of the morning,’ was first of the covering cherubs, holy and undefiled. He stood in the presence of the great Creator, and the ceaseless beams of glory enshrouding the eternal God rested upon him.” Patriarchs and Prophets, 35.

[It is clear from this verse that the reference is not to an earthly king of Babylon.]

  1. What position did Lucifer hold in heaven? Ezekiel 28:14.

NOTE: “Lucifer was the covering cherub, the most exalted of the heavenly created beings; he stood nearest the throne of God, and was most closely connected and identified with the administration of God’s government, most richly endowed with the glory of His majesty and power.” Signs of the Times, April 28, 1890.

[Verse 14 shows clearly that the primary reference is not to an earthly king of Tyre.]

  1. When he was created, what was Lucifer like? Ezekiel 28:15.

NOTE: “The angels had been created full of goodness and love. They loved one another impartially and their God supremely, and they were prompted by this love to do His pleasure. The law of God was not a grievous yoke to them, but it was their delight to do His commandments, to hearken unto the voice of His word. But in this state of peace and purity, sin originated with him who had been perfect in all his ways.” Signs of the Times, April 28, 1890.


  1. What went wrong with Lucifer’s thinking and led him into sin? Ezekiel 28:17, first part.

NOTE: “The change from perfection of character to sin and defection did come even in heaven. Lucifer’s heart was lifted up because of his beauty, his wisdom was corrupted by reason of his brightness. Self-exaltation is the key to his rebellion, and it unlocks the modern theme of sanctification. Satan declared that he had no need of the restraints of law, that he was holy, sinless, and incapable of doing evil; and those who boast of holiness and a state of sinlessness, while transgressing the law of God, while willfully trampling under-foot the Sabbath of the Lord, are allied on the side of the first great rebel. If the sanctified, holy angels became unsanctified and unholy by disobedience to God’s law, and their place was no longer found in heaven, think you that men, redeemed by the blood of the Lamb, will be received into glory who break the precepts of that law which Christ came to magnify and make honourable by His death upon the cross? Adam and Eve were in possession of Eden, and they fell from their high and holy estate by transgression of God’s law, and forfeited their right to the tree of life and to the joys of Eden.” Signs of the Times, April 28, 1890.

  1. Because of his pride, whose position did Lucifer wish to seize? Isaiah 14:13, 14.

NOTE: Notice the self-centerdness of these verses, the number of times Lucifer spoke of “I” and “my.” “Pride in his own glory nourished the desire for supremacy. The high honors conferred upon Lucifer were not appreciated as the gift of God and called forth no gratitude to the Creator. He gloried in his brightness and exaltation, and aspired to be equal with God. He was beloved and reverenced by the heavenly host. Angels delighted to execute his commands, and he was clothed with wisdom and glory above them all. Yet the Son of God was the acknowledged Sovereign of heaven, one in power and authority with the Father. In all the councils of God, Christ was a participant, while Lucifer was not permitted thus to enter into the divine purposes. ‘Why,’ questioned this mighty angel, ‘should Christ have the supremacy? Why is He thus honoured above Lucifer?’” Great Controversy, 495.

“None are too high to fall. Sin originated with Satan, who was next to Christ. Lucifer became the destroyer of those whom heaven had committed to his guardianship. Satan has a church in our world today. In his church are all the disaffected ones and the disloyal. All who harbor pride, ambition, vain-glory, or selfishness, will be found wanting when weighed in the balance of the Lord.” Australasian Union Conference Record, October 1, 1906.

  1. What was the outcome of Lucifer’s ambition? Revelation 12:7.

NOTE: “Until this time all heaven had been in order, harmony, and perfect subjection to the government of God. It was the highest sin to rebel against His order and will. All heaven seemed in commotion. The angels were marshaled in companies, each division with a higher commanding angel at its head. Satan, ambitious to exalt himself, and unwilling to submit to the authority of Jesus, was insinuating against the government of God. Some of the angels sympathized with Satan in his rebellion, and others strongly contended for the honor and wisdom of God in giving authority to His Son. There was contention among the angels. Satan and his sympathizers were striving to reform the government of God. They wished to look into His unsearchable wisdom, and ascertain His purpose in exalting Jesus and endowing Him with such unlimited power and command. They rebelled against the authority of the Son. All the heavenly host were summoned to appear before the Father to have each case decided. It was there determined that Satan should be expelled from heaven, with all the angels who had joined him in the rebellion. Then there was war in heaven. Angels were engaged in the battle; Satan wished to conquer the Son of God and those who were submissive to His will.” Early Writings, 145.

  1. What was the outcome of the war in heaven? Revelation 12: 8, 9.

NOTE: “Even when it was decided that he could no longer remain in heaven, Infinite Wisdom did not destroy Satan. Since the service of love can alone be acceptable to God, the allegiance of His creatures must rest upon a conviction of His justice and benevolence. The inhabitants of heaven and of other worlds, being unprepared to comprehend the nature or consequences of sin, could not then have seen the justice and mercy of God in the destruction of Satan. Had he been immediately blotted from existence, they would have served God from fear rather than from love. The influence of the deceiver would not have been fully destroyed, nor would the spirit of rebellion have been utterly eradicated. Evil must be permitted to come to maturity. For the good of the entire universe through ceaseless ages, Satan must more fully develop his principles, that his charges against the divine government might be seen in their true light by all created beings, that the justice and mercy of God and the immutability of His law might forever be placed beyond all question.” Great Controversy, 498, 499.

“Satan is a deceiver. When he sinned in heaven, even the loyal angels did not fully discern his character. This was why God did not at once destroy Satan. Had He done so, the holy angels would not have perceived the justice and love of God. A doubt of God’s goodness would have been as evil seed that would yield the bitter fruit of sin and woe. Therefore the author of evil was spared, fully to develop his character. Through long ages God has borne the anguish of beholding the work of evil, He has given the infinite Gift of Calvary, rather than leave any to be deceived by the misrepresentations of the wicked one; for the tares could not be plucked up without danger of uprooting the precious grain. And shall we not be as forbearing toward our fellow men as the Lord of heaven and earth is toward Satan?” Christ’s Object Lessons, 72.


  1. How does God’s Word define sin? 1 John 3:4.

NOTE: At a time when theologians are proposing multiple definitions of sin, like “inherited guilt,” “a broken relationship,” “missing the mark,” “our natural spiritual condition, the condition of sinfulness,” “being by nature spiritually bent,” etc., it is important to know what God Himself defines as sin.

“Our only definition of sin is that given in the Word of God; it is ‘the transgression of the Law.’” Great Controversy, 493.

“The only definition given in God’s Word is: ‘Sin is the transgression of the Law,’ and the apostle Paul declares, ‘Where no law is, there is no transgression.’” Bible Echo, June 11, 1894.

  1. Why do we choose to sin when tempted by the devil? James 1:14, 15.

NOTE: “Every man is tempted when he is drawn away of his own lusts and enticed. He is turned away from the course of virtue and real good by following his own inclinations. If [you] possessed moral integrity, the strongest temptations might be presented in vain. It is Satan’s act to tempt you, but your own act to yield. It is not in the power of all the host of Satan to force the tempted to transgress. There is no excuse for sin.” Testimonies, vol. 4, 623.

  1. What will cause our attempts to obey God’s Law to fail? Romans 14:23.

NOTE: ” ‘Here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus.’ In order to be prepared for the judgement, it is necessary that men should keep the law of God. That law will be the standard of character in the judgement. The apostle Paul declares: ‘As many as have sinned in the law shall be judged by the law, . . . in the day when God shall judge the secrets of men by Jesus Christ.’ And he says that ‘the doers of the law shall be justified.’ Romans 2:12–16. Faith is essential in order to the keeping of the law of God; for ‘without faith it is impossible to please Him.’ And ‘whatsoever is not of faith is sin.’ Hebrews 11:6; Romans 14:23.” Great Controversy, 436.


  1. What was Christ’s purpose in coming to earth and taking our nature? Hebrews 2:14.

NOTE: “We need not place the obedience of Christ by itself as something for which He was particularly adapted, because of His divine nature; for He stood before God as man’s representative, and was tempted as man’s substitute and surety. If Christ had a special power which it is not the privilege of a man to have, Satan would have made capital of this matter. But the work of Christ was to take from Satan his control of man, and He could do this only in a straightforward way. He came as a man, to be tempted as a man, rendering the obedience of a man. Christ rendered obedience to God, and overcame as humanity must overcome. We are led to make wrong conclusions because of erroneous views of the nature of our Lord. To attribute to His nature a power that it is not possible for man to have in His conflicts with Satan, is to destroy the completeness of his humanity. The obedience of Christ to His Father was the same obedience that is required of man. Man cannot overcome Satan’s temptations except as divine power works through humanity. The Lord Jesus came to our world, not to reveal what God in His own divine person could do, but what He could do through humanity. Through faith man is to be a partaker of the divine nature, and to overcome every temptation wherewith he is beset.” Signs of the Times, April 10, 1893.

  1. When will the sins of the righteous be finally blotted out of the books of record? Revelation 22:11, 12. Compare Acts 3:19.

NOTE: “When the Third Angel’s Message closes, mercy no longer pleads for the guilty inhabitants of the earth. The people of God have accomplished their work. They have received ‘the latter rain,’ ‘the refreshing from the presence of the Lord,’ and they are prepared for the trying hour before them. Angels are hastening to and fro in heaven. An angel returning from the earth announces that his work is done; the final test has been brought upon the world, and all who have proved themselves loyal to the divine precepts have received ‘the seal of the living God.’ Then Jesus ceases His intercession in the sanctuary above. He lifts His hands and with a loud voice says, ‘It is done;’ and all the angelic host lay off their crowns as He makes the solemn announcement: ‘He that is unjust, let him be unjust still: and he which is filthy, let him be filthy still: and he that is righteous, let him be righteous still: and he that is holy, let him be holy still.’ Revelation 22:11. Every case has been decided for life or death. Christ has made the atonement for His people and blotted out their sins.” Great Controversy, 613, 614.

  1. How complete will the destruction of Satan and sin? Malachi 4:1, Psalm 37:9, 10, Ezekiel 28:19.

NOTE: “Then the end will come. God will vindicate His law and deliver His people. Satan and all who have joined him in rebellion will be cut off. Sin and sinners will perish, root and branch (Malachi 4: 1), Satan the root, and his followers the branches. The word will be fulfilled to the prince of evil, ‘Because thou hast set thine heart as the heart of God; . . . I will destroy thee, O covering cherub, from the midst of the stones of fire . . . Thou shalt be a terror, and never shalt thou be any more.’ Then ‘the wicked shall not be: yea, thou shalt diligently consider his place, and it shall not be;’ ‘they shall be as though they had not been.’ Ezekiel 28:6–19; Psalm 37:10; Obadiah 16.” Desire of Ages, 763.

Recipe – Millet Pudding

Place in Blender:

3 cups cooked millet

1 tsp. vanilla

1/2 cup honey

Then add enough soy milk or cashew milk to soften to a pudding consistency.

Pour enough Grape Nuts in a baking dish to make a one-inch layer and then add the pudding. Bake on a low heat in the oven for about thirty minutes. After baking, remove from oven and place any seasonal fruit, sliced, on top.

Food for Life – Sedentary Workers

Every day men in positions of trust have decisions to make upon which depend results of great importance. Often they have to think rapidly, and this can be done successfully by those only who practice strict temperance. The mind strengthens under the correct treatment of the physical and mental powers. If the strain is not too great, new vigor comes with every taxation. But often the work of those who have important plans to consider and important decisions to make is affected for evil by the results of improper diet. A disordered stomach produces a disordered, uncertain state of mind. Often it causes irritability, harshness, or injustice. Many a plan that would have been a blessing to the world has been set aside, many unjust, oppressive, even cruel measures have been carried, as the result of diseased conditions due to wrong habits of eating.

“Here is a suggestion for all whose work is sedentary or chiefly mental; let those who have sufficient moral courage and self-control try it: At each meal take only two or three kinds of simple food, and eat no more than is required to satisfy hunger. Take active exercise every day, and see if you do not receive benefit.

“Strong men who are engaged in active physical labor are not compelled to be as careful as to the quantity or quality of their food as are persons of sedentary habits; but even these would have better health if they would practice self-control in eating and drinking.

“Some wish that an exact rule could be prescribed for their diet. They overeat, and then regret it, and so they keep thinking about what they eat and drink. This is not as it should be. One person cannot lay down an exact rule for another. Everyone should exercise reason and self-control, and should act from principle.

“Our bodies are Christ’s purchased possession, and we are not at liberty to do with them as we please. All who understand the laws of health should realize their obligation to obey these laws which God has established in their being. Obedience to the laws of health is to be made a matter of personal duty. We ourselves must suffer the results of violated law. We must individually answer to God for our habits and practices. Therefore the question with us is not, ‘What is the world’s practice?’ but, ‘How shall I as an individual treat the habitation that God has given me?’ ” The Ministry of Healing, 309, 310.

“Men and women cannot violate natural law by indulging depraved appetite and lustful passions, and not violate the law of God. Therefore He has permitted the light of health reform to shine upon us, that we may see our sin in violating the laws which He has established in our being. All our enjoyment or suffering may be traced to obedience or transgression of natural law. Our gracious heavenly Father sees the deplorable condition of men, who, some knowingly but many ignorantly, are living in violation of the laws that He has established. And in love and pity to the race, He causes the light to shine upon health reform. He publishes His law, and the penalty that will follow the transgression of it, that all may learn, and be careful to live in harmony with natural law. He proclaims His law so distinctly, and makes it so prominent, that it is like a city set on a hill. All accountable beings can understand it if they will. Idiots will not be responsible. To make plain natural law, and urge the obedience of it, is the work that accompanies the Third Angel’s Message, to prepare a people for the coming of the Lord.” Counsels on Diet and Foods, 69.

Report on the Lawsuit Against Raphael Perez

It is with regret and sadness that we share this report regarding the lawsuit filed by the General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists against Raphael Perez and the Eternal Gospel Church of Laymen Seventh-day Adventists.

Brother Perez was asked by the Southeastern Conference to start a Spanish speaking church in July of 1990. With the approval of the Southeastern Conference, he and the church began a radio ministry for the Spanish speaking people, broadcasting from the West Palm Beach area. Eventually the broadcast was being aired on five radio stations.

Taking seriously the counsel in Evangelism, 129, Raphael and the Eternal Gospel church told the conference administration that they would like to start putting advertisements in newspapers. The first one they started with was a tract which they received from the Florida Conference Adventist Book Center entitled “The Law of God” which they thought would especially appeal to the Jewish segment of the population. They bought a full page of advertising space in the Palm Beach Post, in 1991, to spread the message of this tract about the importance of God’s law.

In a matter of time, complaints started coming, and Pastor Perez was asked by his conference president to discontinue the radio program “because it was going outside his district.” He was also told to stop the newspaper ads. It seemed evident that the Lord was blessing with responses to the broadcast and the ads, and Pastor Perez felt that he must continue to spread the warning message for a lost world to all who would listen or read. Eventually, as conflict over these evangelistic outreach efforts developed, the Eternal Gospel Church was disowned by the conference and Pastor Perez was disfellowshipped from the conference. However, he and the group of Seventh-day Adventist believers in the Eternal Gospel church continued to expand their efforts as the Lord provided the way.

Through the next few years, the Eternal Gospel Church of Laymen Seventh-day Adventists arranged for ads in major newspapers across the nation. In 1993, the text of “Earth’s Final Warning” was placed in a full page ad in the Fort Lauderdale “The Sun Sentinel.” In 1995, an ad was placed in the “New York Daily News.” This brought some vocal reaction from the prominent Roman Catholic, Cardinal O’Conner and also from a General Conference representative who called the “New York Daily News.” As a result the “New York Daily News” defaulted on the contract for a second ad.

In 1998, ads were placed in the “Washington Times,” “The Miami Herald,” and “The Los Angeles Times.” Ads have also been placed in all the major Spanish newspapers of the nation. Following the appearance of an ad, on September 11, in the “Washington Times,” a Cardinal Hickey wrote an article of protest which was published in the newspaper. In it he called for the leaders of the Seventh-day Adventist church to make a public apology for the “unconscionable attack” upon the pope and the Catholic church. About the same time, the “Washington Times” was contacted and threatened with a lawsuit for their publication of the advertisement. Pastor Perez had previously received messages from Kermit Netteburg, and eventually from Vincent Ramik, the Roman Catholic attorney who had previously been hired by the General Conference in trademark lawsuit issues, threatening him with court action if he did not quit using the name Seventh-day Adventist.

Finally, on December 3, 1998, Pastor Perez and the Eternal Gospel Church of Laymen Seventh-day Adventists were served with a summons to answer to charges filed by the General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists. These charges included unfair competition, and trademark infringement. It is also charged that Pastor Perez and the other members of the church have caused “damage and injury” to the General Conference that is “irreparable,” and further that the use of the term “Seventh-day Adventist” by Pastor Perez, “has caused and/or is likely to cause confusion, mistake or deception” producing “irreparable damage and harm.”

The General Conference in this lawsuit, civil action case #98-2940 in the United States District Court of the Southern District of Florida, seeks a court order enforcing that “all their owners, officers, agents, servants, employees, attorneys, their heirs, successors, and assigns, and all persons acting in concert or participation with them” be “restrained pendente lite [while the lawsuit is in progress] and permanently” from using the words “Seventh-day Adventist” and “SDA” or any other words that are similar in connection with their activities. In addition, the General Conference asks the court to order Pastor Perez and the Eternal Gospel Church to forthwith “cease all advertising which includes” the use of the words “Seventh-day Adventist,” “SDA,” and their equivalents in Spanish. The General Conference desires that the court instruct Pastor Perez and his fellow Seventh-day Adventist believers to “deliver up to the Clerk of this court for destruction all signs, advertisements, stationary, and all other materials in the possession or under the control of Defendants” that have the words “Seventh-day Adventist” and “SDA.” The lawsuit also requests payment for “damages suffered by the Plaintiff and for all attorney’s fees and costs incurred in the General Conference action to take this case to court, and any other further amount for which the court will make provision.

With the help of Max Corbett, a Seventh-day Adventist attorney in Texas, Pastor Perez returned a response to the court on January 19, 1999. In this response the Defendants admit to using the name Seventh-day Adventist, but deny that it is causing damage to the General Conference or that the General Conference even has the right to trademark the name. The Defendants have not engaged in the alleged unfair competition, nor in deceptive and unfair trade practices. They further state that the name Seventh-day Adventist is the name of a faith, and as such is an article of faith, and faith and belief cannot be trademarked. The freedom to use the name Seventh-day Adventist, as an expression of faith, is a fundamental right, and falls under the freedom of religion protected by the Unites States Constitution.

The Defendants also point out that there are a number of organizations and groups outside the General Conference that use the name “Seventh-day Adventist” and that to allow any of them to use the name to the exclusion of the others is to favor some to the exclusion of others which is a violation of the first amendment to the U.S. Constitution. The Defendants state that the lawsuit is actually a case of “malicious prosecution,” and that in reality the Defendants are doing what every Seventh-day Adventist should be doing, namely warning the world about coming chaos to the cities and the enforcement of the national Sunday law—the mark of the beast. In addition to asking the court to make the General Conference pay the costs of conducting the lawsuit, they ask the court to declare that the trademark registration is null and void, and unenforceable.

Pastor Perez asked if the General Conference would be willing to work out a settlement outside of court, and the General Conference responded with a settlement proposal dated January 19, 1999. In it Pastor Perez and the rest of the group were to discontinue all use of the name “Seventh-day Adventist,” “SDA,” and “Adventist,” especially on church signs, in advertisements and publications, church activities, Sabbath services or schedules, pamphlets, magazines, stationary, envelopes, faxes, telephone calls or audio materials, etc. The settlement also required that Pastor Perez was to keep all the terms of the agreement confidential (emphasis and underlining in the original). He was to further agree that if in the future he was found by the court to be guilty of using the name in any of the ways that were forbidden he would agree to pay all court costs, attorney’s fees, and “damages.” This settlement was to be binding upon Pastor Perez, all his associates, successors, and assigns.

Even as the General Conference lawsuit was getting under way, an ad was published on January 25, 1999, in the “St. Louis Post Dispatch” when the pope was making his appearance in St. Louis. A man who had been waiting, for 7 to 8 hours, to see the pope bought a newspaper while he was waiting and in the course of looking through it he came to the advertisement with “Earth’s Final Warning.” He read that the pope was the antichrist, and that the Catholic church had changed the day of worship from Sabbath to Sunday. He went to the phone, called the number given at the end of the advertisement, and exclaimed that he had just found out that he had been waiting for eight hours to see the antichrist. He requested more information and literature that was offered.

As can often happen to those who endeavor to stand firmly for the standards of God’s Word, Pastor Perez has been viewed as being “against” the church, although he has publicly offered $1000 to anyone furnishing evidence that he has ever called the church Babylon, or encouraged people to leave the church. People have told him, “You don’t want to work with the conference.” He has responded that he would be happy to work with the conference. He has even stated that he would be willing to stop the radio broadcasts and newspaper advertisements if it can be clearly shown that the Lord wants these stopped. But it would be wrong to stop these things just because man says to stop, when the Lord clearly instructed us to go and preach to all nations and give the last warning message of mercy and impending judgments to the world.

Sometimes, it also happens that General Conference officials will state that they are not filing a lawsuit, only an injunction. An injunction, by definition, is a court order prohibiting or requiring certain actions. A lawsuit, by definition, is a case brought before a court for settlement. An injunction, is a particular kind of lawsuit. It would be a little like pointing to an oak tree and saying: “This is not a tree, it is an oak.” The issue here is whether the court is being sought to carry out and enforce an action.


Do not be like the people of Meroz who brought upon themselves the curse of God for doing nothing in an emergency. (See Testimonies, vol. 3, 281.) If you want the Third Angel’s Message to be publicly proclaimed without reprisal, we earnestly ask that you write a letter as soon as possible to Pastor Raphael Perez.

Your letters of support and those of many others are urgently needed. They may be used in court by the lawyers who will be representing the defendants. These letters are part of an Amicus Curiae brief which refers to friends of the court who want to file evidence for use in the case (in this situation on behalf of the defendant). These letters should state reasons why a ruling against the defendants would also be against many others who subscribe to the Seventh-day Adventist faith. All of the letters need to be written in a calm and Christlike way, but should clearly express the concerns which we have. Statements from the Bible and the Spirit of Prophecy supporting the concerns which you express are appropriate. We have included some examples of such statements with this report. These letters should be forwarded to Pastor Raphael Perez at the following address:

Eternal Gospel Church of Seventh-day Adventists
P.O. Box 15138
West Palm Beach, FL 33416
Phone: 561-688-2150
Fax: 561-688-0470

The following are points to be considered when you compose your letter.

  1. This lawsuit is civil action case #98-2940 in the United States District Court of the Southern District of Florida.
  2. The author of the letter holds beliefs like those of the defendants in this lawsuit.
  3. Those who share this faith believe that it is our duty to God and our fellow human beings to give the last warning of mercy to the inhabitants of this earth as Pastor Perez and his co-defendants have been actively engaged in doing.
  4. When communicating our faith, Pastor Perez, and all of us who share his faith, should be free from the threat of prosecution.
  5. The name Seventh-day Adventist is a statement of faith and is not the sole property of a group claiming that title. The name was given by God Himself to His last day people.
    “We are Seventh-day Adventists. Are we ashamed of our name? We answer, ‘No, no! We are not. It is the name the Lord has given us. It points out the truth that is to be the test of the churches.’ ” Selected Messages, Book 2, 384.
  6. Those who hold to the historic beliefs of Seventh-day Adventism should not be forced to forfeit the name that represents our beliefs. The use of a name that expresses our faith is a fundamental right and is protected by freedom of religion as outlined in the first amendment of the United States Constitution.
  7. The actions of the Eternal Gospel Church of Seventh-day Adventists do not constitute competition or trademark infringement as the sharing of our faith and the last warning message of mercy to the world is not a competitive or profit making venture.
  8. Those who believe and practice the historic tenets of the Seventh-day Adventist faith will not feel damaged or injured by the proclamation of those beliefs to the public. We do not believe that the General Conference of Seventh-day Adventist has suffered any damage or injury by the actions of the Eternal Gospel Church.
  9. This lawsuit is actually a case of “malicious prosecution” of those who are doing what every faithful Seventh-day Adventist should be doing. As such, those who brought the case should bare the costs of conducting the case.
  10. Since the name Seventh-day Adventist is used by many groups and organizations that work outside the General Conference, to allow some to freely use the name while forbidding others is to favor some to the exclusion of others.
  11. The trademark registration of the name Seventh-day Adventist should be declared by the court to be null, void and unenforceable.

You can also send a copy of your letter to the General Conference President. You may use information from this report as a basis for your thoughts. It would also be appropriate to point out that this action is totally contrary to the Bible and the Spirit of Prophecy. As Seventh-day Adventists, we feel that a great injustice is being done to fellow believers, and that God is being dishonored and brought to open shame by this action on the part of the General Conference. We urgently request that this case be dropped as soon as possible. The address for the General Conference President is:

General Conference President
General Conference of SDA
12501 Old Columbia Pike
Silver Springs, MD 20904
Phone: 301-680-6090
Fax: 301-680-6464

Thank you for your prayers and help.

Statements About Lawsuits from the Pen of Inspiration:

“These men cast aside the counsel God has given, and do the very things He has bidden them not to do. They show that they have chosen the world as their judge, and in heaven their names are registered as one with unbelievers. Christ is crucified afresh, and put to open shame. Let these men know that God does not hear their prayers. They insult His holy name, and He will leave them to the buffetings of Satan until they shall see their folly and seek the Lord by confession of their sin.” Selected Messages, Book 3, 299.

“God will deal with the unworthy church member who defrauds his brother or the cause of God; the Christian need not contend for his rights. God will deal with the one who violates these rights. ‘Vengeance is mine, I will repay, saith the Lord.’ Romans 12:19. An account is kept of all these matters, and for all the Lord declares that He will avenge. He will bring every work into judgment.” Ibid., 300.

“I have written largely in regard to Christians who believe the truth placing their cases in courts of law to obtain redress. In doing this, they are biting and devouring one another in every sense of the word, ‘to be consumed one of another.’ They cast aside the inspired counsel God has given, and in the face of the message He gives they do the very thing He has told them not to do. Such men may as well stop praying to God, for He will not hear their prayers. They insult Jehovah, and He will leave them to become the subjects of Satan until they shall see their folly and seek the Lord by confession of their sins.” Ibid., 302.

“I call upon you in the name of Christ to withdraw the suit that you have begun and never bring another into court. God forbids you thus to dishonor His name. You have had great light and many opportunities, and you cannot afford to unite with worldlings and follow their methods. Remember that the Lord will treat you according to the stand that you take in this life. . . .

“I tell you solemnly that if you take the action which you now purpose to take, you will never recover from the result of it. If you open before the world the wrongs that you suppose your brethren have done you, there will be some things that will have to be said on the other side. I have a caution to give you.

“In regard to the case of those who shared large responsibilities with you in the Review and Herald, and who have turned to be enemies of the work, you will not wish to hear the verdict that shall be passed upon them when the judgment shall sit and the books shall be opened, and every man shall be judged according to the things written in the books. I want to save you from following a course that would link you up with those who have linked themselves up with fallen angels, to do all the harm they possibly can to those who love God, and who, under great difficulty, are striving to proclaim present truth to the world.” Ibid., 304–305.

The Alpha and the Omega of Apostasy, Part I

If we desire to climb the last part of the road to heaven, we must learn our lesson from history. This is not only true for the part of history recorded in the Bible (see 1 Corinthians 10:11) and the Great Controversy (see the Preface of that book), but it is especially for the history of Adventism. It was in this context that Ellen White talked about the Alpha and Omega of apostasy. She wrote, “We have now before us the alpha of this danger. The omega will be of a most startling nature.” Selected Messages, vol.1, 197.

As we will see, in the following statement, the most startling nature of the omega apostasy consists in the extent of the crisis. While the alpha of apostasy stands for the beginning and was to be limited to a certain local area, the omega of apostasy would develop to a most startling degree until the end. “One thing it is certain is soon to be realized,—the great apostasy, which is developing and increasing and waxing stronger, and will continue to do so until the Lord shall descend from heaven with a shout.” The New York Indicator, February 7, 1906.

If we want to know what course is to be followed in the days of the omega apostasy we have to heed the counsels and instructions given by Ellen White during the alpha crisis. We have to learn from history in order not to repeat the mistakes made in the past. “It is presented to me that in our experience we have been and are meeting this very condition of things.” Battle Creek Letters, 124.

In the alpha crisis we find a description of the future (or already existing) condition and experience of the Adventist people. Ellen White tells us: “Past history will be repeated; old controversies will arouse to new life, and peril will beset God’s people on every side.” Testimonies to Ministers, 116. “We have nothing to fear for the future except as we shall forget the way the Lord has led us.” Testimonies to Ministers, 31.

How Did the Alpha Develop?

In the center of the alpha-crisis was one man, John Harvey Kellogg, an Adventist physician. Under his leadership, Battle Creek Sanitarium received worldwide fame at the turn of the century. But in the late 1890s, his zeal and energy were more and more mixed with a new idea—that God, not being personal, was in every living thing; in every flower, in every tree, in every morsel of bread. What Kellogg believed to be “new light” forced the prophet of God, even before 1881, to give him a warning message. “Those theories are wrong. I have met them before.” Manuscript Releases, vol. 5, 278, 279.

Since he was married to a Seventh Day Baptist, Kellogg came in contact with a Seventh Day Baptist minister named Lewis. This man held pantheistic views as well. In Kellogg’s mind the pantheistic ideas were brought to maturity, so that, in 1897, he talked about this topic publicly for the first time. Others like Waggoner and Kress came to the same conviction and joined him in preaching this at the General Conference, of 1899, in South Lancaster, Massachusetts.

One month before that conference, Ellen White had written and sent warning letters from Australia, which arrived just at the right time. But sadly enough, these warnings were not heeded. Pantheistic ideas continued to be spread over the land. They were taught, in Battle Creek, in both the College and Sanitarium

Ellen White had to send warning after warning. On February 18, 1902 the Battle Creek Sanitarium burned to the ground. To finance the new sanitarium, Kellogg was asked to write a book, the royalties of which were to be taken for the new sanitarium building. The book Kellogg wrote was entitled “The Living Temple.” The finished manuscript was full of his erroneous ideas that had their origin in spiritualistic, pantheistic philosophy. Many discussions followed. Ellen White wrote about this book.

“In the book ‘Living Temple’ there is presented the alpha of deadly heresies. The omega will follow, and will be received by those who are not willing to heed the warning God has given.” Selected Messages, vol. 1, 200.

Despite the reproofs from God’s prophet, Kellogg was determined to print his book in the way he wrote it. So he gave a printing order to the Review and Herald Publishing Company, which they accepted. But God Himself interfered. After the printing patterns were finished and the book was ready to be printed, the publishing house, on December 31, 1902, caught fire and burned to the ground. This did not happen unexpectedly, but was mentioned by the prophet of the Lord more than one year before. (See Testimonies, vol. 8, 91.) The sword of fire had fallen and all knew that God had spoken.

In spite of all this, Kellogg was not prepared to change his mind, and stubbornly went to another publishing house to get his book printed. He then took efforts to ensure that his book was widely circulated among Adventists and non-Adventists. So the pantheistic tares grew and became a danger for the whole work. Ellen White summed up the situation with these words: “Battle Creek has been the seat of rebellion among a people to whom the Lord has given great light and special opportunities.” Paulson Collection, 71.

What is the Omega?

  • In the context of the alpha crisis, Ellen White describes a vision about the soon coming omega apostasy among Adventists. “The enemy of souls has sought to bring in the supposition that a great reformation was to take place among Seventh-day Adventists, and that this reformation would consist in giving up the doctrines which stand as the pillars of our faith, and engaging in a process of reorganization. Were this reformation to take place, what would result? The principles of truth that God in His wisdom has given to the remnant church, would be discarded. Our religion would be changed. The fundamental principles that have sustained the work for the last fifty years would be accounted as error. A new organization would be established. Books of a new order would be written. A system of intellectual philosophy would be introduced. The founders of this system would go into the cities, and do a wonderful work. The Sabbath of course, would be lightly regarded, as also the God who created it. Nothing would be allowed to stand in the way of the new movement. The leaders would teach that virtue is better than vice, but God being removed, they would place their dependence on human power, which, without God, is worthless. Their foundation would be built on the sand, and storm and tempest would sweep away the structure.” Selected Messages, vol. 1, 204, 205.
    A reformation inspired by the devil was to take place, and it would consist “in giving up the doctrines which stand as the pillars of our faith.”

What are the pillars of our Adventist faith? They are as follows:

  • The nature of Christ
  • The sanctuary service
  • The spirit of prophecy
  • The Three Angels’ Messages (exposing the papacy, Babylon, ecumenism, explaining the Sabbath-Sunday-question, exalting the law of God, etc.)
  • The state of the dead and the exposure of spiritualism

What Happened to the Pillars of Our Faith?

In the 1950s a movement began which was to bring heavy consequences with it for the Seventh-day Adventist Church. Every possible effort was taken by men in leading positions in the General Conference to keep Adventists from being called a “sect” by evangelical Christians. The issue came to a head when Donald Grey Barnhouse, editor of the journal “Eternity,” and Walter R. Martin, evangelical theologian, wanted to write a book about Seventh-day Adventists proclaiming that they were a non-Christian “sect.”

For this purpose they met with Adventist leaders to discuss the doctrines of Adventism, by which Barnhouse and Martin were convinced Adventists would be unmasked as a non-Christian sect. The central topic was the final atonement service of Jesus, in the second apartment of the sanctuary, during the judgment when He would blot out the sins of the truly penitent. Another topic was the nature of Christ.

When the Adventist leaders were confronted with quotations from our books, they soon realized that their declarations would not be enough to convince Barnhouse and Martin that the SDA Church was not a sect, but a Christian church. So they decided to publish a new book on Adventist doctrines. That book was Questions on Doctrine (1957), and it marked the beginning of the effort to remove the pillars of our faith.

About the first pillar, the nature of Christ, they wrote: “He was without sin, not only in His outward conduct, but in His very nature. . . . He was sinless in His life and in His nature. . .” Questions on Doctrine, 383; [All emphasis supplied.]

As God’s end time people that are sanctifying themselves to be as pure in character as Jesus was during His life on earth (1 John 3:3), it is of saving importance to believe that Jesus could remain sinless with the same (sinful) flesh we have. Of what use is a savior that reveals that unfallen flesh could resist sin? We need a Savior who shows us that it is possible to live a perfect life (Hebrews 2:14, 17), in our sinful nature. And that is what Jesus did. He left us the example that sinful man does not sin when his will is surrendered entirely to God. Paul tells us of “God sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh . . . ” Romans 8:3. He who does not testify to this, reveals the spirit of Antichrist. (1 John 4:2, 3.)

A second pillar that was removed is the Spirit of Prophecy. Barnhouse wrote in his article “Are SDAs Christians?” what he was told by Adventist leaders about the prophetic gift of Ellen White. “The Adventist leadership proclaims that the writings of Ellen G. White . . . are not a parity with Scripture. . . . They admit her writings are not infallible . . . Her writings incidentally are not a test of fellowship in the SDA church.”
Ellen White was shown: “The very last deception of Satan will be to make of none effect the testimony of the Spirit of God.” Selected Messages, vol. 1, 48. We see that the last crisis—the Omega—has already begun.

A third pillar that has been taken away is the sanctuary doctrine. Barnhouse wrote: “Mr. Martin and I heard the Adventist leaders say, flatly, that they repudiate all such extremes [that is the teaching that Jesus went into the most holy place on October 22, 1844, to make an atonement before His Second Coming]. This they have said in no uncertain terms.”

The rejection of this important doctrine has been confirmed in the book Questions on Doctrine. On page 381 it states: “Jesus . . . entered the ‘holy places,’ and appeared in the presence of God for us. But it was not with the hope of obtaining something for us at that time, or at some future time. No! He had already obtained it for us on the cross.” (See also 354, 355; emphasis in the original.)

If Jesus completed the atonement at the cross, the question arises, what is Jesus doing up in heaven now that could be so important? If everything was done at the cross, then there is no closing atonement, no investigative judgment and no blotting out of sin. The result of such a theology is the idea that we never can become perfect. And if no one can overcome all sin, why should keeping the commandments be so important? Wouldn’t it then be just as easy to be saved as a Sunday-keeper as a keeper of the Sabbath? Also the Three Angels’ Messages would mainly consist of the message that Jesus has done everything for you. It is easy to see that here lies the cause for many of the wrongs and sins in the Adventist Church.

Are the fallacies presented in Questions on Doctrine still believed by mainstream Adventism today? Walter Martin gives the answer to this question in his book The Kingdom of the Cults. “On April 29, 1983, W. Richard Lesher, vice-president of the General Conference, responded in a personal letter. His reply read in part: ‘You ask first if Seventh-day Adventists still stand behind the answers given to your questions in Questions on Doctrine as they did in 1957. The answer is yes.’ ” For this reason we find in later books, like 27 Fundamental Doctrines of SDA’s, the same false doctrines presented.

In Germany’s ministerial seminaries, the doctrines that make us Seventh-day Adventists are denied without shame. One instructor stated: “I believe that in 1844 nothing happened, neither in heaven nor on earth.” U. Worschech of Marienhoehe’s Ministerial Seminary, as copied during his class “Sanctuary Service.” On another occasion the same instructor said, “We have to Ford-develop our theology on the sanctuary.” U. Worschech on the occasion of Desmond Ford’s visit at the AWA meeting, October 24-26, 1986.

That is the exact fulfillment of Ellen White’s prophecies concerning the omega-crisis and truly describes the present situation: “The foundation of our faith, which was established by so much prayer, such earnest searching of the Scriptures, was being taken down, pillar by pillar. Our faith was to have nothing to rest upon—the sanctuary was gone, the atonement was gone.” The Upward Look, 152. [Emphasis supplied.]

The Omega and the Three Angels’ Messages

If the atonement being done in the most holy place is taken away, the whole foundation of the Three Angels’ Messages has to collapse, too, because these angels point directly to Jesus’ work of redemption in the most holy place. (See Early Writings, 256.) Ellen White says: “I was shown three steps—the First, Second, and Third Angels’ Messages. Said my accompanying angel, ‘Woe to him who shall move a block or stir a pin of these messages. The true understanding of these messages is of vital importance. The destiny of souls hangs upon the manner in which they are received.’ I was again brought down through these messages, and saw how dearly the people of God had purchased their experience. It had been obtained through much suffering and severe conflict. God had led them along step by step, until He had placed them upon a solid, immovable platform. I saw individuals approach the platform and examine the foundation. Some with rejoicing immediately stepped upon it. Others commenced to find fault with the foundation. They wished improvements made, and then the platform would be more perfect, and the people much happier. Some stepped off the platform to examine it and declared it to be laid wrong. But I saw that nearly all stood firm upon the platform and exhorted those who had stepped off to cease their complaints; for God was the Master Builder, and they were fighting against Him.” Early Writings 258, 259. [Emphasis supplied.]

When we go out doing missionary work and distributing pamphlets that contain the Three Angels’ Messages, how often do we hear professed Seventh-day Adventists say something like this? “It is not good missionary work to be putting the beast, his mark and his image to the front. It’s just not the right method. It’s too hard.”

Even though they claim only to reject the form or the method, it is obvious that they fear our message could be made known publicly. The public unmasking of popery as the whore and the professed Protestant churches as daughters of whoredom, makes them uncomfortable, lest these churches denounce the Adventists as a sect. They fear that the result would be to raise opposition and to lower the acceptance and influence of Adventism, and they are afraid that it might finally bring about persecution.

People start finding faults with the platform, complain about it and wish to have improvements made. (See Early Writings, 258.) They claim, maybe not explicitly in their words, but by their deeds, that the foundation was built the wrong way. These are not just the feelings of a few Adventist individuals, but this is a policy which is penetrating the whole SDA-organization, as can be shown by the following example.

The former General Conference President, Neal Wilson, said in the Pacific Union Recorder: “Our work is not to denounce the Roman Catholic Church.” February 18, 1985. That sounds good, but what does he really mean? In a civil court case, Wilson said, “Although it is true that there was a period, in the life of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, when the denomination took a distinctly anti-Roman Catholic viewpoint, and the term ‘hierarchy’ was used in a pejorative sense to refer to the papal form of church governance, that attitude on the church’s part was nothing more than a manifestation of widespread anti-popery attitude among conservative Protestant denominations in the early part of this century and the latter part of the last, and which has now been consigned to the historical trash heap so far as the SDA Church is concerned.” EEOC vs PPPA and GC, Civil Case #74-2025 CBR, 1975. [All emphasis supplied.]

How can it come to pass that the leader of a denomination that was called by God to warn of the efforts of popery, could “consign” that message “to the historical trash heap”? How can he reject God’s holy trust so decidedly? Neal Wilson had to bear witness of his faith in the courtroom in times of peace, but he betrayed it. The astonishing thing is that this statement, apparently, did not cause widespread indignation. One gets much more the impression that the president just formulated an accepted point of view among Seventh-day Adventists.

Ellen White describes this attitude in the following words: “The opinion is gaining ground, that, after all, we do not differ so widely upon vital points as has been supposed, and that a little concession on our part will bring us into a better understanding with Rome. The time was when Protestants placed a high value upon the liberty of conscience which has been so dearly purchased. They taught their children to abhor popery, and held that to seek harmony with Rome would be disloyalty to God. But how widely different are the sentiments now expressed.” The Great Controversy, 563. [Emphasis supplied.]

If now, in times of peace, we deny our faith that openly, what will happen in the future when laws are made against God’s commandment-keeping people? “If thou hast run with the footmen, and they have wearied thee, then how canst thou contend with horses? and [if] in the land of peace, [wherein] thou trustedst, [they wearied thee], then how wilt thou do in the swelling of Jordan?” Jeremiah 12:5.

To be continued next month . . .

The Road to the Inquisition

{{“We should be very cautious lest we take the first steps in this road that leads to the Inquisition.”}}

Solemn events are unfolding around us, both in the world and in God’s professed church. As we see the Bible prophecies being fulfilled in catastrophic world events and political movements, we also see the fulfillment of solemn warnings given to God’s last day people by God’s prophet.

The prophet Isaiah predicted that in the last days God’s chosen people would rebel against Him, and turn their ears away from hearing the Law. They will say to the prophets, who are sent to them, “Prophesy not unto us right things, speak unto us smooth things, prophesy deceits: Get you out of the way, turn aside out of the path, cause the Holy One of Israel to cease from before us.” Isaiah 30:10, 11.

We must ask ourselves the serious question, Have we in Adventism turned aside from hearing the words of God’s prophet? Have we turned from following God’s Holy Law to follow the commands of another leader?

In this article we will trace the steps of the apostasy, in Adventism, in order to understand how we arrived at the place we now occupy in the Historic Adventist movement. We will also consider where this path is leading and what the sure results will be (according to inspiration) unless a complete change is made.

The Road to the Inquisition

Throughout history Satan and his associates have used a consistent series of methods to destroy those who do not agree with them or will not submit to their authority. Speaking of these steps in Signs of the Times, May 26, 1890, Ellen White wrote, “The papal authorities first ridiculed the reformers, and when this did not quench the spirit of investigation, they placed them behind prison walls, loaded them with chains, and when this did not silence them or make them recant, they finally brought them to the fagot and the sword.” But, you might ask, How does this affect us today? God’s prophet continued: “We should be very cautious lest we take the first steps in this road that leads to the Inquisition.”

Although we may not have seen open, physical persecution, are there other ways that one can lead down the road to the inquisition? Consider carefully another quotation where Ellen White outlines how an inquisition has been set up even among God’s professed people. “An inquisition has been set up among those who should be free from all overbearing. God calls for the extinction of this satanic devising. The love of Christ in the heart forbids all oppression . . . But for years, some, even among those who claim to believe present truth, have acted in an oppressive manner, cherishing in the heart that fearful, hateful thing which has led them to exclude their brethren from their fellowship and their councils, because they supposed them wanting in some respects, as though the Lord has made them judges of character.” Review and Herald, January 7, 1902. [All emphasis supplied.]

Has Adventism begun down the road to the inquisition? We will begin our investigation with the General Conference Session in 1888.

The 1888 General Conference

The issues surrounding the 1888 General Conference have been widely discussed through Adventist circles, but the central issue, which Ellen White labored hardest to combat, has received little attention. That overruling problem was the kingly power that existed among the Adventist leadership at that time, which had led to a restriction of God’s work. In the 1888 Materials, Ellen White wrote about this problem many times. The following is a brief sample:

“Over and over again men have said, ‘The voice of the conference is the voice of God; therefore everything must be referred to the conference. The conference must permit or restrict in the various lines of work.’ As the matter has been presented to me, there is a narrow compass, and within this narrow compass, all the entrances to which are locked, are those who would like to exercise kingly power. But the work carried on all over the field demands an entirely different course of action. There is need of the laying of a foundation different from the foundation which has been laid in the past.

“We have heard much about everything moving in the regular lines. When we see that the ‘regular lines’ are purified and refined, that they bear the mold of the God of heaven, then it will be time to endorse these lines. But when we see that message after message given by God has been received and accepted, yet no change has been made, we know that new power must be brought into the regular lines.” 1888 Materials, 1727, 1728.

“The spirit of domination is extending to the presidents of our conferences. If a man is sanguine of his own powers and seeks to exercise dominion over his brethren, feeling that he is invested with authority to make his will the ruling power, the best and only safe course is to remove him, lest great harm be done and he lose his own soul and imperil the souls of others . . . A man’s position does not make him one jot or tittle greater in the sight of God; it is character alone that God values.” Ibid., 1445.

“Now I want to say, God has not put any kingly power in our ranks to control this or that branch of the work. The work has been greatly restricted by the efforts to control it in every line . . . Let me tell you, if your heart is in the work, and you have faith in God, you need not depend upon the sanction of any minister or any people; if you go right to work in the name of the Lord, in a humble way doing what you can to teach the truth, God will vindicate you.” Ibid., 1746.

What were the results of this kingly power? The first was that the work of spreading the Three Angels’ Messages was hindered, and because of this, Ellen White began to give her support to various independent workers and organizations. The foremost of these was Madison College established by E. A. Sutherland and Percy Magan, in 1908.

The Madison School

For years, Sutherland and Magan had worked in Adventist educational institutes. In 1897 they were both serving at Battle Creek College. Under the conviction that the church had not followed the divine plan for education, as set forth in the counsel of Ellen White, they began attempting to make reforms in that institution. They met stiff opposition, and finally they decided to move the college away from Battle Creek to Berrien Springs, where the new college was called Emmanuel Missionary College. Unfortunately, they still faced severe opposition as they tried to follow the divine plan, so, in 1904, they both resigned and made plans to open a self-supporting school in the South. Under the direction of the Lord, Ellen White helped Sutherland and Magan find the property for the new school, Madison College. She also gave direction for the planning of the school and served as a charter member of the board (the only college board one which she ever served ).

All was not easy for the new self-supporting school. Sutherland and Magan faced opposition (although often not open) from the leaders in the conference, and they received no financial support from the denomination. Despite all of this, Ellen White still counseled them to remain independent from the conference. She wrote: “When my advice was asked in reference to the Madison school, I said, Remain as you are. There is danger in binding every working agency under the dictation of the conference. The Lord did not design that this should be. The circumstances were such that the burden bearers in the Madison school could not bind up their work with the conference. I knew their situation, and when many of the leading men in our conferences ignored them, because they did not place their school under conference dictation, I was shown that they would not be helped by making themselves amenable to the conference. They had better remain as led by God, amenable to Him, to work out His plans. But this matter need not be blazed abroad.” Manuscript Releases vol. 8, 203–204.

God knew that if the school was under conference direction, the work of spreading the Three Angels’ Messages would be slowed, just as it had been in the older schools that had been established. Sister White wrote: “I have been shown that in our educational work we are not to follow the methods that have been adopted in our older established schools. There is among us too much clinging to old customs, and because of this we are far behind where we should be in the development of the Third Angel’s Message.” Special Testimonies 11,29.

So, we have seen that because of the problems with kingly power and the unwillingness of the Adventist leadership, in Ellen White’s day, to receive her inspired counsel, the Lord had to raise up independent organizations to train workers and spread the Three Angels’ Messages. And, very often, these independent workers were shunned, or their work was hindered because they wanted to follow the divine counsel. Kingly power wants to crush out individuality and freedom to act upon the dictates of your own conscience. This is what the conference did not like.

Has there been a reformation among the Seventh-day Adventist leadership? Or does the same problem of kingly power, which existed in the last century, still exist today? Have advances down the road to the inquisition been made? We do not have to look very far to discover the answers. Notice what happened to the people in the Hungarian General Conference, during the 1960s and 70s, and you decide if you think the problem has been solved or if it has gotten worse.

The Hungarian Crisis

In 1957, the Hungarian Union of Seventh-day Adventists joined the Council of Free Churches, a Hungarian inter-church ecumenical federation. This was done voluntarily and without any governmental coercion. (The Council of Free Churches is the Hungarian branch of the World Council of Churches, which is pushing for a national Sunday Law among other ecumenical goals.)

The knowledge that their own churches were involved in such an activity was very distressing to the faithful Adventist people in Hungary. Faithful Adventists could not keep silent when they saw such apostasy. Did they have a right to be concerned about the Hungarian Union being a part of the World Council of Churches? Notice carefully these words from the pen of inspiration which the faithful Hungarians used to defend their course of action: “The wide diversity of belief in the Protestant churches is regarded by many as decisive proof that no effort to secure a forced uniformity can ever be made. But there has been for years, in churches of the Protestant faith, a strong and growing sentiment in favor of a union based upon common points of doctrine. To secure such a union, the discussion of subjects upon which all were not agreed—however important they might be from a Bible standpoint—must necessarily be waived. Charles Beecher, in a sermon in the year 1846, declared that the ministry of ‘the evangelical Protestant denominations’ is ‘not only formed all the way up under a tremendous pressure of merely human fear, but they live, and move, and breathe in a state of things radically corrupt, and appealing every hour to every baser element of their nature to hush up the truth, and bow the knee to the power of apostasy. Was not this the way things went with Rome? Are we not living her life over again? And what do we see just ahead? Another general council! A world’s convention! Evangelical alliance, and universal creed!’ When this shall be gained, then, in the effort to secure complete uniformity, it will be only a step to the resort to force.” Great Controversy, 444, 445.

What are the results of an ecumenical movement? This inspired warning tells us that the sure results will be persecution for God’s true people. For, it will be through ecumenism that Protestant America will form an image to the Roman hierarchy, and civil penalties for the faithful will inevitably result.

How did the Adventist leadership respond to this apostasy by the Hungarian Union? In a sermon, Neal Wilson, the President of the General Conference at that time, replied to the faithful Seventh-day Adventists who were protesting this union with the Council of Free Churches. In regard to those who had joined the CFC he stated: “They did something which seemed good in their eyes. To try to cooperate, to receive those benefits and privileges which they are entitled to by this. If we were to talk over this question today, and if they would ask us whether to enter or not, we would advise them not to enter. Not because it is wrong, or because it would be a denial of what God said . . . Not because we violate our teaching by this, and not because the Union would be committing apostasy by joining the Council of Free Churches. We do not believe this. Never think of it in this way. But because our opinion is that it would be wiser to do so.” The Hungarian Union Apostasy, Pilgrim’s Tractbooks, page 63. [All emphasis supplied.]
Was it apostasy for Adventism to join with the fallen daughters of Babylon in an ecumenical bond, in light of the clear testimony of God’s inspired word? The answer is a resounding Yes! “It is a backsliding church that lessens the distance between itself and the Papacy.” Signs of the Times, February 19, 1894.

The faithful Hungarian brethren pleaded with the Hungarian Union to withdraw from the Council of Free Churches, but they would not. As a result, whole churches that persistently protested this union were disbanded. Those who chose to stay a part of the Conference, in order to restore their membership, had to sign a declaration which stated that they were wrong and that they would remain loyal to the General Conference and accept all church policies. Twelve hundred faithful Hungarian Adventists would not sign the declaration, and all 1200 were disfellowshiped. Twenty-six ministers and Bible workers were discharged for protesting the ecumenical involvement, and five church buildings were shut down and the doors barred to keep the faithful Adventists from gathering there. And at one church, in Budapest, guards were stationed around the church to make sure none of those who had been disfellowshipped could use the building.

Open Apostasy in Russia

About the same time as the Hungarian Crisis, a similar situation occurred in Communist Russia. The issues that the faithful Adventists in Russia faced at this time were that the Conference was 1) promoting SDA children attending school on Sabbath, 2) working to stop evangelism in Russia and 3) allowing the pastors to read fictional books from the pulpit on Sabbath morning.

The faithful Seventh-day Adventists began to write letters to the General Conference about the issue sending their children to school on the Sabbath. Their reply was that they could not find a Biblical reason for them not to be attending schools on the Sabbath. (See The Kulakov File, 49.)

Kulakov, a self-appointed leader, was a strong supporter of all of the apostasy which the faithful Adventists were standing up against. When these faithful ones went to the General Conference for help, with reports of what Kulakov was promoting, not only did they not receive any help, but Kulakov received the support of the GC.

With the backing of the General Conference, Kulakov went to the civil authorities, and with their help, forced the faithful Adventists out of their long established churches. He and his followers then became the registered church in Russia. This then made the faithful Adventists an illegal organization, no longer recognized by the state as legitimate, and this forced them to go underground and hold their worship services in secret.

Do you see the progression down the road to the inquisition? Not only were the members disfellowshipped by the church without Biblical grounds, but the conference did nothing to stop Kulakov from using the civil authorities to disband faithful Adventist churches. This action is directly contrary to God’s express word. In Acts of the Apostles, 305–306, we read: “Christians should not appeal to civil tribunals to settle differences that may arise among church members. Such differences should be settled among themselves, or by the church, in harmony with Christ’s instruction . . .

“It was apostasy that led the early church to seek the aid of the civil government, and this prepared the way for the development of the papacy—the beast. Said Paul: ‘There’shall ‘come a falling away, . . . and that man of sin be revealed.’ 2 Thessalonians 2:3. So apostasy in the church will prepare the way for the image to the beast.” Great Controversy, 443–444.

It was apostasy for the early church to seek the aid of the civil government, and it is apostasy when Adventists seek the aid of the civil government today. So, we must ask ourselves, what is the underlying issue that leads men to seek the aid of civil governments to prosecute their brethren? The fundamental issue is the unregenerate heart which seeks to control others. Jeremiah 17:9 says, “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?”

When church leaders begin down the road of kingly power, and they wish to control the minds of their brethren, they become progressively more willing use whatever methods they can find to accomplish their purpose. They may start with ridicule, evil-speaking and withholding support, then they may disfellowship the dissenting members, and if that is not successful they may turn to civil authority to meet their end.

All this happened twenty or more years ago in the Adventist Church. Has there been a change since then? Sadly, the answer is no. There has been no reformation among the leadership of the Adventist Church. There is still the same desire to control the work. And many more people, who have been unwilling to submit to the Conference and go along with the apostasy, have been disfellowshiped or have been forced to leave their churches. As this article is being published, the General Conference is using the strong arm of the court to stop the work of a faithful minister (who has been working tirelessly to spread the Three Angels’ Messages), because he uses the name “Seventh-day Adventist.”

A Faithful Adventist Sued

Raphael Perez was a Conference pastor who was preaching the Three Angels’ Messages on radio stations in Florida. When he would not stop presenting the messages, as the Conference demanded, his ministerial license was revoked. Since that time, Raphael’s ministry has expanded to more radio stations and he now puts full-page advertisements in large city newspapers around the United States, giving the final warning message with clarity and power. The suit he is now facing threatens to destroy his ministry and make it financially impossible for him to continue giving the Three Angels’ Messages.

What exactly is the charge in the suit against Pastor Raphael Perez? In his court summons the Conference reveals their true purpose. “[Eternal Gospel has embarrassed the SDA church by his hateful denunciations of the Catholic church.]

The Conference is embarrassed by the clear presentation of the message we have been commanded to give to the world! They have shown this over and over again in recent years. Just this past January, when the Pope visited St. Louis, a number of Historic Adventist groups were there to pass out literature which exposed the Beast and the Mark of the Beast. The conference made a public apology for these “fringe groups” as they called them.

The statement posted on the Adventist Today webb page said, “The recent visit of Pope John Paul II and his message of hope, plea for high moral standards, end to racism, abortion, assisted suicide and the death penalty emphasized issues that need to be at the forefront of thought.

“Unfortunately, in conjunction with the Papal visit, offshoot groups claiming association with the Seventh-day Adventist Church have coordinated negative media campaigns which misrepresent the care, compassion and respect we have for people of all faiths . . .

“As Seventh-day Adventist Christians, we would like to apologize for any and all communications that have advocated discrimination, hatred and unwarranted persecution of members of the Roman Catholic Church . . .

“Kermit Netteburg, communication director for the Adventist Church in North America [said] ‘The public needs to be aware that fringe groups are using the Adventist Church’s name, and not identify the official Church with these ads.’ ”

What a sad day we have come to when the professed people of God no longer call sin by its right name, or call people to come out of Babylon, but instead give medallions to the Pope, complement him for the “good” he has done and participate in his masses.

Has Rome changed? Or does God still require that we expose her iniquity? “The Roman Church now presents a fair front to the world, covering with apologies her record of horrible cruelties. She has clothed herself in Christlike garments; but she is unchanged. Every principle of the papacy that existed in past ages exists today. The doctrines devised in the darkest ages are still held. Let none deceive themselves. The papacy that Protestants [professed Adventists] are now so ready to honor is the same that ruled the world in the days of the Reformation, when men of God stood up, at the peril of their lives, to expose her iniquity. She possesses the same pride and arrogant assumption that lorded it over kings and princes, and claimed the prerogatives of God. Her spirit is no less cruel and despotic now than when she crushed out human liberty and slew the saints of the Most High.” Great Controversy, 571

It is not time to join hands with Rome. It is time to give the message with clearly that “Babylon is fallen, is fallen, that great city, because she made all nations drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication.” Revelation 14:8. God’s prophet said, “Time is short. The First, Second, and Third Angel’s Messages are the messages to be given to the world. We hear not literally the voice of the three angels, but these angels in Revelation represent a people who will be upon the earth and give these messages . . . With pen and voice we are to proclaim that very message to the world, not in a tame, indistinct whisper.” 1888 Materials, 926.

Dear friends, the time that remains for this world is very short! Right now we must take advantage of every opportunity to present the last warning message to a dying world, for soon it will be forever too late. Let us each surrender ourselves fully to the Lord so that He can change our hearts, so hardened by sin, and make us fit vessels to do His work. For without Him we can do nothing. We must ask ourselves the question, “Which side am I on? Have I taken the first steps that lead down the road to the Inquisition?” Remember, in the final conflict there will be only two groups, the faithful who will be persecuted and those who will be persecuting. May God help us to be among the faithful.