Children’s Story – For Whom Did She Do It?

Her name was Marie Copeland. “I’m sure I shall be the girl,” she said to herself. “There are more in my basket than in any other girls.”

“How do you get on, Marie?” asked the teacher.

“Oh, finely! I’m sure I shall get the money.”

“Oh, you mean the dollar toward the Indian scholarship?”

“Yes, you know we are all working hard for that, and Mr. Blake offered a dollar for it to the girl whose basket held the most berries in two hours.”

The teacher stood with his hands behind him and watched her a few moments.

“Are you working for the Indian boy or for yourself?” he asked. Marie looked up in surprise and indignation.

“Why, I thought I told you,” she said.

“Yes, you told me,” he answered quietly, and turned away to the other children.

“I told him,” said she, uneasily. “What could he mean?” and again she picked harder than ever. Her cheeks grew a little flushed as the moments went by, but her basket became more and more heavy until Mr. Blake announced the two hours up.

Marie stopped then and turned to join the group who were comparing baskets.

Just in front of her was lame Bessie—a little girl with a sweet, winsome, but just now dirty face. Marie did not like dirty faces.

“Do you think I’ll get it?” asked Bessie, holding up her basket to Marie.

Poor child! Her hands were scratched, her dress torn, her apron stained, but her blue eyes very sweet and honest, as she added: “I can’t generally give things, but I thought maybe I could this time.”

And there were about two dozen berries in her basket!

“Are you doing it for yourself or for the Indian boy?” Marie’s “mindears” heard this echo, although there was no sound.

“Oh, for the boy of course! What a question to ask!” Marie answered crossly, but her lips didn’t move.

“How happy it would make Bessie!”

“Now they are mine; I picked them my own self, and I think I might have the credit! It’s too mean for anything!” Marie’s lips did move this time. “Besides it wouldn’t be honest for Bessie; she didn’t pick them.”

“He said, to the girl whose basket held the most berries”—

“Well, I will not do it!” said Marie.

But she did do it. In less than five minutes the contents of her basket filled Bessie’s. “Oh, could you believe it?” cried Bessie, joy shining through the stains on her face. Marie made no answer, neither did she tell any one else. But the teacher who, with his hands still behind him, watched Bessie’s reception of the prize, turned to Marie and said: “You did it for the Indian boy, and God bless you!”

The End

John Calvin and the French Reformation

Calvin Studies Law

Calvin had been destined to become a minister at the altar of Rome but following his conversion “he resolved to devote himself to the profession of law. This mode of retreat from the clerical ranks would awaken no suspicion.” History of Protestantism, book 13, 156.

Calvin and many law students both before and after him were trained under the maxim that it was necessary for the state to punish crimes both civil and religious. This theory had been propounded as an incontrovertible truth and “had passed in Christendom for a thousand years as indisputably sound, serving as the corner-stone of the Inquisition . . . Under no other maxim was it then deemed possible for nations to flourish or piety to be preserved; nor was it till a century and a half after Calvin’s time that this maxim was exploded, for of all fetters those are the hardest to be rent which have been forged by what wears the guise of justice, and have been imposed to protect what professes to be religion.” Ibid.

One useful aspect of his education at this time was that he found a scholar who taught him the Greek of the New Testament. Now he could study the New Testament in its original language which was a very useful ability as he would, in a few years, begin to write his “Institutes” which were very helpful documents to the cause of the Reformation.

The Martyrdom of Berquin

Calvin traveled to Paris in 1529 and was present to witness the martyrdom of Louis de Berquin, of whom the historian Beza wrote: “Berquin would have been a second Luther had he found in Francis I a second elector.” Ibid., 159. Berquin was a nobleman and a knight who was devoted to study and loved reading. With polished manners and high morals, frank, courteous, and full of alms giving, he was much loved and was often seen at court. He had been a great papist and despiser of Lutheranism but God had opened his eyes.

The Sorbonne was angry and with authority from Parliament they imprisoned him three times between 1523 and 1526. Each time the king set him free.

From the writings of the Sorbonnist Berquin extracted twelve propositions which he presented to the king and charged them to be contrary to the Bible and therefore, heretical. His enemies were confounded and more so by the king’s request that they disprove them from the Bible. This might have proved a very hard task for the Sorbonnist but at that time an image of the Virgin was mutilated. “‘These are the fruits of the doctrines of Berquin,” it was exclaimed; ” all is about to be overthrown—religion, the laws, the throne itself—by this Lutheran conspiracy.’ War to the knife was demanded against the iconoclast: the people and the monarch were frightened; and the issue was that Berquin was apprehended (March, 1529) and consigned to the Conciergerie.” Ibid., 160.

His trial ended in a sentence of the stake and not a day’s delay was allowed least the king send a pardon. Berquin was radiant and wore his finest clothes as he was escorted through streets thronged by spectators to the Place de Greve. Dreading the effect of his dying words the monks gave a signal and “instantly the shout of voices, and the clash of arms, drowned the accents of the martyr. ‘Thus,’ says Felice, ‘the Sorbonne of 1529 set the populace of 1793 the base example of stifling on the scaffold the sacred words of the dying.’” Ibid., 162. When the fire had done its work the Sorbonnists were overjoyed: the Protestants were bowed down with sorrow. But in a way Berquin’s stake was a candle that shone all through France.

Paris Hears the Gospel a Second Time

There followed three years of relative peace in France. Calvin stayed on in Paris and continued to work in the homes of the people, going from home to home instructing the families in the Gospel. While many students were ever ready to do verbal battle on religious topics, Calvin was coming from daily prayer and perusal of the scriptures to devote his time to evangelization rather than debate. He was not just silencing opponents but enlightening minds.

Francis, the king, in a political move against his opponent, Charles V, made some attempts to league with the Protestants of Germany. The king’s sister Margaret, Queen of Navarre, saw this as her chance to promote Protestantism in France. She arranged for her pastor Roussel to preach in the Louvre. Five thousand gathered daily. “Nobles, lawyers, men of letters, and wealthy merchants were mingled in the stream of bourgeoisie and artisans that each day, at the appointed hour, flowed in at the royal gates, and devoutly listened under the gorgeous roof of the Louvre to the preaching so unwonted.” Francis granted his sister’s request for possession of two churches and she placed Courault and Berthaud, both Augustinian monks to preach in them. She was delighted with the effect and Paris was full of signs of reformation.

The Sorbonnists were anxious to burn Roussel. The king would not grant them permission and neither the chancellor nor the archbishop would help so they turned to the populace. They sent their preachers into the pulpits and with “shouting and gesticulating these men awoke, now the anger, now the horror of their fanatical hearers, by the odious epithets and terrible denunciations which they hurled against Lutheranism.” Ibid., 171. They sent mendicants into the homes to drop seditious hints that the Pope was above the king and that Francis would not long be king. Processions of many days duration were organized in the streets with penitents imploring the saints to smite this heresy.

“Nor did the doctors of the Sorbonne agitate in vain. The excitable populace were catching fire. Fanatical crowds, uttering revolutionary cries, paraded the streets, and the Queen of Navarre and her Protestant coadjutors, seeing the matter growing serious, sent to tell the king the state of the capital.” Ibid. He ordered Beda sent into banishment but the excitement did not quickly cool. Fiery placards were posted on the houses and ballads were sung demanding the stake for Protestants. The Protestant sermons continued and there were conversions but the masses remained with Rome. Twice now France had been given the gospel and twice they had turned away from it.

Alexander’s Martyrdom

The year 1533 saw the Sorbonnists choosing another victim for their fires. They dared not choose Margaret’s preacher Roussel so they arrested a former Dominican friar who called himself Alexander. He had first heard the Gospel in Paris and had thrown off his monkish name and garments and fled to Geneva where he was taught by Farel. He was eloquent and burned with zeal. He began his work in Switzerland but feeling a desire for the French he made his way to Lyons and fanned the flames of the ancient faith of the in that city. He was pursued but he escaped repeatedly. Finally he was arrested and taken to Paris. He succeeded in converting the captain of the company who escorted him and he was allowed to preach all along the way. At his appearance before the Parliament he confessed his Reformed faith and he was tortured cruelly and left a cripple. He was straightway condemned to the flames, underwent the ceremony of degradation and carted in a rubbish wagon to the stake. All along the way he preached to the crowds. The people were astonished and many cried for his release. He was joyful even chained to the pile and extolled the Savior to all around. There were many tears and much wailing that this man was not worthy of death but he met his end with confidence in his future. In 1534 the churches of Paris were closed and 300 Lutherans were imprisoned. The burnings resumed shortly thereafter.

Calvin Escapes Paris

Calvin made his escape from Paris just before the storm broke. He and his good friend Nicholas Cop, Rector of the Sorbonne devised a plan to preach the Gospel in the University itself. Cop was to give an address for the inaugural of a new session and he agreed to read an oration written by Calvin. The monks saw this as an act of treason and both Cop and Calvin narrowly escaped. Calvin found refuge in the mansion of the Du Tillets where he spent six months studying in their excellent library. “Nights without sleep, and whole days during which he scarcely tasted food, would Calvin pass in this library, so athirst was he for knowledge.” Ibid., 177. Here he planned his Institutes which were “composed on the model of those apologies which the early Fathers presented to the Roman emperors on behalf of the primitive martyrs. Again were men dying at the stake for the Gospel. Calvin felt that it became him to raise his voice in their defense. . . He prepared himself by reading, by much meditation, and by earnest prayer.” Ibid.

“Parliament, in the beginning of 1534, at the instigation of Beda, passed a law announcing death by burning against those who should be convicted of holding the new opinions on the testimony of two witnesses.” Ibid., 201. Despite the new law in France, Calvin made another short visit in Paris, attended by the young Du Tillet, where he ministered to the church there which was outwardly composed of mostly humble common men. Calvin went from home to home teaching. Here he found that there were elements attempting to enter the young church. Some came bringing pantheistic and atheistic doctrines to deform the church. Calvin knew that his work would be to resist these frightful doctrines as well as the errors of Rome.

Francis Tries to Embrace Both Rome and the Reformation

Francis I, ever plotting against his bitter enemy Charles V, proposed a plan to Pope Clement to join their houses by marriage between his second son and Clements niece. Catherine de Medici was a lovely girl of fifteen when the marriage took place but she would become a power in the royal family. She became noted for “an inordinate love of power. Whoever occupied the throne, Catherine was the real ruler of France.” Her husband’s and sons’ reigns were blackened by her scheming. “Her will must be done, and whatever cause or person stood in her way must take the consequences by the dungeon or the stake, by the poignard or the poison-cup.” Ibid., 186.

After arranging this fateful marriage Francis startled the members of his council by announcing his intent to seek union with the Protestants of Germany. He wanted to be on both sides at once. Francis thought to cause Charles more discomfort by uniting Rome and the Reformation. He met with Phillip of Hesse and offered to help finance the armies of the league. He asked Melancthon, Bucer and Hedio to send proposals to his council. Melancthon proposed a scheme in which the Reformation would bring its doctrine and Rome would bring its hierachy to form the new church. This would never have worked for new wine in an old bottle was not the solution. But the Reformation was saved from this union which would have brought a respite but no real Reformation. An unexpected event took place which changed the king’s course and ended his vacillation.

The Posting of the Placards

There were two parties in the young Church in France. One was inclined to wait on the outcome of the king’s council and trust in these men of power to make reforms. The other was very distrusting of the king’s ways for he embraced the Pope one day and the Protestants the next. He sent a Romanist to prison and followed this with the burning of a Reformer. They wanted to see a bold policy put into action that would lead to the overthrow of the Papacy in France. These two parties sought advice from the French Reformer, Farel, in Switzerland.

They sent a messenger who found Switzerland a very different place from Paris. There altars and images were being torn down and the Reformed worship being set up. The Swiss Reformers “assembled, heard the messenger, and gave their voices that the Protestants of France should halt no longer; that they should boldly advance; and that they should notify their forward movement by a vigorous blow at that which was the citadel of the Papal Empire of bondage—the root of that evil tree that overshadowed Christendom—the mass.” Ibid., 206. It was proposed that a paper be published and posted all over France. It would be composed in Switzerland and Farel is generally believed to be its author. “It was no logical thesis, no dogmatic refutation; it was a torrent of scathing fire; a thunderburst . . . But the author who wrote, and the other pastors who approved, did not sufficiently consider that this terrible manifesto was not to be published in Switzerland, but in France, where a powerful court and a haughty priesthood were united to combat the Reformation.” Ibid., 207. The messenger was sent back with their advice and the proposed publication.

Immediately the members of the little Church met to deliberate about the placard. There were many present who thought that gentler words would go deeper. But the majority were impatient of delay. France was behind other countries in the advance of the Reformation, and they voted to publish. They chose the night of October 24, 1534 to post the placard all over France. “They displayed them on the walls of the Louvre, at the gates of the Sorbonne, and on the doors of the churches.” Ibid., 208.

At an early hour Montmorency and the Cardinal de Tournon knocked at the king’s closet door to tell him of the dreadful night. As they entered they took down a copy of the placard which had been hung there and handed it to the king who had his courtiers read it. “He stood pallid and speechless a little while; but at length his wrath found vent in terrible words: ‘Let all be seized, and let Lutheranism be totally exterminated.’” Ibid., 208. The king summoned Parliament to meet, and execute strict justice in the affair and he commanded his lieutenant-criminal, Jean Morin, to swiftly bring all to justice who had played a part in the matter.

Morin knew the man whose job it was to call the Protestants from their homes to meetings and with threats caused him to join in a plan to capture all of the offenders. The betrayer walked before a priest bearing the Host in a procession that was called to do expiation for the affront to the “Holy Sacrament.” As they went through the street the betrayer pointed out the houses of the Protestants and the family was dragged out and manacled. “Morin made no distinction among those suspected: his rage fell equally on those who had opposed and those who had favored the posting of the placards. Persons of both sexes, and of various nationalities, were included among the multitude now lodged in prison. . . Every scaffold would be a holy alter, every victim a grateful sacrifice, to purify a land doubly polluted by the blasphemous placard. And above all, they must maintain the popular indignation at a white heat. The most alarming rumours began to circulate through Paris. To the Lutherans were attributed the most atrocious designs. They had conspired, it was said, to fire all the public buildings, and massacre all the Catholics . . . These terrible rumours were greedily listened to, and the mob shouted, ‘Death, death to the heretics!’” Ibid., 209.

There were many scaffolds and all Paris was to be able to see what kind of men these were for they witnessed bravely through the tortures that Francis ordered. The indiscriminate vengeance caused many who had been sympathetic to the Gospel to fear and they rose up and fled. Within a few days there were many blanks in the society of Paris and each one represented a convert to the Gospel. These were the first of what was to be a long train who would flee in the years to come and carry with them “The intelligence, the arts, the industry, the order, in which, as a rule they pre-eminently excelled, to enrich the lands in which they found an asylum.” Ibid., 213. Among those who fled was Margaret, the king’s sister. She went to her little realm and Bearn became a refuge to the persecuted.

On January 21, 1535, the king marched in a procession that drew all of Paris. He was doing penance for the crime of his Protestant subjects. Following the procession he gave a speech—eloquent and touching—urging all to become participants in purging their country of this perverse sect by informing on their friends and relatives and declaring that he would not spare even his own child. He wept and the crowd wept with him. He swore to make war on heresy and the spectators declared. “We will live and die for the Catholic religion!” Ibid., 218. “When Francis I re-entered his palace and reviewed his day’s work, he was well pleased to think that he had made propitiation for the affront offered to God in the Sacrament, and that the cloud of vengeance which had lowered above his throne and his kingdom was rolled away. . . The populace of the capital were overjoyed; they had tasted of blood and were not soon to forego their relish for it, nor to care much in the after-times at whose expense they gratified it.” Ibid. Francis’ war on Protestantism even included a ban on printing. How strange this act from one who claimed to be a promoter of learning. “It is one among a hundred proofs that literary culture is no security against the spirit of persecution.” Ibid., 220.

Calvin and the Institutes

Just a little before the storm, Calvin had left Paris and traveled to Strasburg and then to Basle. He had a chance to visit with some of the leaders of the Reformation in these cities. In Basle word reached him of the atrocities in Paris. “He knew the men who had endured these cruel deaths. They were his brethren. He had lived in their houses; he had sat at their tables. . . He knew them to be men of whom the world was not worthy; and yet they were accounted as the off-scouring of all things, and as sheep appointed to the slaughter were killed all day long. Could he be silent when his brethren were being condemned and drawn to death?. . He had a pen, and he would employ it in vindicating his brethren in the face of Christendom. . . He could vindicate these martyrs effectually not otherwise than by vindicating their cause.” Ibid., 225.

Calvin set to work writing the Institutes of the Christian Religion. Which was “a confession of faith, a system of exegesis, a body of polemics and apologetics, and an exhibition of the rich practical effects which flow from Christianity—it was all four in one.” Ibid., 227. It was dedicated to Francis I, declaring the cause of the truth so defamed by its enemies as simply the Gospel of Jesus Christ and the only crime of the martyrs as that of believing the Gospel. He called for Francis to embrace this truth. It is doubtful Francis ever read it.

The Institutes set forth in a systematic way the beliefs of the Reformation. This work was adopted by the Reformed Church, and published in later years into most languages of Christendom. As it spread through many lands it became a powerful preacher to many.

It contained his views on predestination which were called into question even in his day. “The Reformer abhorred and repudiated the idea that God was the Author of sin, and he denied, too, with the same emphasis, that any constraint or force was put by the decree upon the will of man, or any restraint upon his actions; but that, on the contrary, all men enjoyed that spontaneity of will and freedom of action which are essential to moral accountability. . . Calvin freely admitted that he could not reconcile God’s absolute sovereignty with man’s free will; but he felt himself obliged to admit and believe both.” Ibid., 232.

(Note: The ultimate effect of the error of Calvin’s doctrine on predestination is seen today as Satan has succeeded in using it to present God as having Satan’s character. Calvin’s followers have carried the idea to its lengths and made a satanic god to present to Christianity. Adventism has also been infected. The Reformers were not free of error but we are to examine the historical evidence and cast away the dross while learning from their examples of courage.)

A Manner of Madness, The Lack of a Love for Truth

“They received not the love of the truth , that they might be saved. And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie.” II Thessalonians 2: 7-8.

Madness (to use the older term) comes in many ways. We hear of phobias, fixations, obsessions, delusions, and other mental disorders without number. From Alzheimer’s disease to schizophrenia, they have been analyzed, classified, and treated, until there is quite a body of literature on the subject. We learn that some mental impairments are caused by physical problems, such as birth defects or brain injuries. Others are to some degree self-inflicted through the use of liquor or drugs. Others seem to be an outgrowth of dire living situations or experiences.

In our previous article we learned about the hideous monster-god of Calvinism who ordains, decrees, creates and supervises every thought, impulse, and action of all persons on earth, whether they be good or whether they be evil. We felt inclined to agree with John Wesley, who said of the Calvinistic theologians of his day, that they made God worse than Satan. We also learned that Satan has endeavored to clothe God with his own attributes by making false accusations against Him, and that the centerpiece of those false accusations was the allegation that God had given a law that His subjects could not obey. He hoped by this means to convince the universe that God is arbitrary, cruel, harsh, unforgiving, etc.

We were required to recognize that Satan’s accusation, that God has given a law that His subjects cannot obey, is now being taught as truth at our theological seminary, in our colleges, and in many of our churches throughout the land. This is astonishing, and the methods by which this was brought about are even more astonishing. They remind us of our text, and of some sobering statements by Ellen White. From these we learn that there is a particular and peculiar manner of madness that begins with having no love for the truth and ends with an inability to distinguish truth from error. It seems that a dislike for the truth can cause God to withdraw His protection, and then Satan moves in upon the mind with all of his mighty power, bringing serious mental derangement. Consider this evidence:

“Light rejected becomes, to the rejector, blacker than the darkness of midnight.” Review and Herald, June 3, 1902.

It must have been this principle that caused Isaiah to write: “Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil, that put darkness for light, and light for darkness.” Isaiah 5:20.

Could it be that they were afflicted by this peculiar form of madness? We read of some of the leaders of Israel: “By rejection of evidence they lost their spiritual insight, and could not discern between good and evil, between truth and error, between light and darkness.” Review and Herald, May 18, 1893.

Ellen White comments further: “The mind that cherishes sentiments that tend to destroy faith in the foundation that has made us what we are, becomes confused, and cannot discern between truth and error.” Bible Training School, March 1, 1915.

“He who deliberately stifles his conviction of duty because it interferes with his inclinations will finally lose the power to distinguish between truth and error.” Great Controversy, 378.
This would surely be a tragic condition. It must be a recognition of this principle that caused Ellen White to write: “I question whether genuine rebellion is ever curable.” The Australian Years, 286.

Before anyone can be helped in spiritual matters, there must be a sense of need. God has promised that “If any man will do His will, he shall know of the doctrine.” John 7:17. But how can God help the one who simply does not want to do His will? The truth has been made known to him but it is not welcome. He wishes that it were not so. This is the beginning of what ends in a terrible mental problem, a madness that is defined as an inability to distingish truth from error.

It happened to some Jewish leaders. It has happened to some of our leaders. Remember the Kellogg tragedy? Dr. John Harvey Kellogg had one of the most brilliant minds among us, but he became enamored with the ancient falsehood of pantheism. A. G. Daniells, who had worked in India, and knew pantheism when he saw it, tried hard to help Kellogg, but found that he could not reach him. Kellogg had developd a distaste for the Spirit of Prophecy, and he had clearly lost the ability to distinguish between truth and error. It happened to other leaders as well, calling forth from Ellen White in 1901 the anguished question:

“Are there men at the heart of the work men who cannot distinguish between truth and error?” Mind, Character, and Personality, 717.

It could even happen to a General Conference president. Elder G.I. Butler wrote and published in the Review an article arguing that there are different degrees of inspiration, an idea that is sometimes advanced in our time. It was also being taught in Battle Creek college. This called forth from Ellen White: “Have God’s people put out their eyes, that they cannot distinguish between the sacred and profane?” 1888 Materials, 258.

She was referring to a General Conference president. And she was referring to another when she wrote of president O. A. Olsen: “When Elder Olsen linked himself with these men, he perverted his spiritual eyesight, and saw things in a strange light . . . His clear discernment between right and wrong has become injured.” Manuscript Releases, vol. 17, 182.

What does all of this say to us? It tells us with unmistakable clarity that among all of the other kinds of mental impairment that afflict men’s minds, there is a particular, peculiar form of madness that begins with “They received not the love of the truth,” and ends with “They cannot distinguish between truth and falsehood.” Brilliance of intellect is no defense against it, nor is power, position, or higher education. It can strike in any place where truth is known but not appreciated. Lack of protection from God leaves the individual alone to contest the massive intellectual powers of Satan, which have never been equalled or even approximated by the greatest intellectual powers of any man.

This type of madness can be quite specific. It does not mean that the individual becomes unable to function normally in other ways. But in spiritual matters, dealing with the eternal truth of God, his behaviour will be erratic, bizarre, and wildly out of harmony with reality. He may set forth ridiculously false propositions, and steadfastly maintain that they are true. He may even try to rewrite the facts of history to make them fit his theories, make false statements about the Bible or the Spirit of Prophecy, or even re-write the Spirit of Prophecy.

While doing these strange things, he may appear to be earnest and sincere, since he actually does not know when he is telling the truth and when he is not telling the truth. He may set forth ludicrous self-contradictions in his written materials, apparently having no awareness at all of what he has done. And perhaps most astonishing of all, he will publish his ridiculous misrepresentations of fact and sign his name to them, seemingly unconcerned that his distortions of fact, self-contradictions and untruths will eventually be uncovered and exposed. This is probably one of the more dependable means of identifying such a mental problem. Men in their right minds who set out to deliberately deceive us would doubtless be more careful to employ disguises of various kinds, in order to avoid being caught in their misrepresentations. These poor people seem to manifest no such caution or concern.

This should help us to understand our present situation in the Seventh-day Adventist church. For quite a few years now we having been gazing in dumfounded astonishment at the things that are being said, written and done by some of our church leaders. We have found it unbelievable, yet undeniable. Utterly horrendous misrepresentations of fact have been issuing from our Seventh-day Adventist publishing houses and appearing in our church papers for several years. Protests have been utterly fruitless.

I have personally made a supreme effort to call the attention of our church leaders to some of the worst misrepresentations that have appeared. During the years 1981–1986 I engaged in careful and thorough research in our historical records, and found 1200 statements by our pioneers and church leaders to reaffirm that our Lord had come to this earth in the human nature of fallen man. Of these statements, 400 had been published by Ellen White. This was in startling contrast to the claim, made in the book Questions On Doctrine, that our church had never believed such a thing.

In 1986 I presented my findings in manuscript form to both of our major publishing houses. Both refused to print it. So I published it at my own expense, and then sent free copies of it to all of our church adminstrators in North America. This included one hundred Genaral Conference officers, and the three leading officers in every Union and local conference in this division. I also sent free copies to every minister in Australia and New Zealand.

In the book I offered a reward of $1000.00 to any person who could produce from Ellen Whites’s writings a single statement that Christ had come in the human nature of the unfallen Adam, as was claimed to be her teaching in the book Questions On Doctrine. This offer was met with a thunderous, ear-shattering silence. It soon became clear that there was a firm determination to simply “stonewall” the facts and defend the falsehood.

Conditions have not improved since then. It is now 1996. On every side we see ominous indications of the approaching end. Departures from the truth are becoming worse and worse, and books containing glaring falsehoods are continuing to roll off the presses. Meanwhile the efforts of church leaders are being exerted only to silence the voices that are calling for fidelity to the truth. We can no longer realistically hope for any kind of reform, and so silence is no longer appropriate. You need to know, and you have a right to know, what is being done in our church in defiance of the truth, and by whom.

I will therefore place before you a list of five names. All of these persons have Doctor of Philosophy degrees. Three of them have been seminary professors, and two have been college teachers. They have all written books in defense of Calvinistic falsehood. These books have been printed in our denominational publishing houses, and sold in our Adventist Book Centers. The names are Dr. Leroy Edwin Froom, Dr. Edward Heppenstall, Dr. Desmond Ford, Dr.Helmut Ott, and Dr. Roy Adams.

As I said, they have all written books in defense of Calvinistic falsehood. What I shall share with you today, therefore, is in no sense of the word rumor or hearsay. It is a matter of record. I am personally convinced that these authors and publications fit the inspired description of that peculiar mental problem that begins with “They received not the love of the truth,” and ends with “They are not able to distinguish between truth and error, right and wrong, light and darkness.” I invite you to draw your own conclusions.

Dr. Leroy Edwin Froom was the leader in the ill-fated dialogues with Walter Martin and his Calvinistic colleagues in the 1950s. He put together the materials for the book, Questions On Doctrine, and followed with another volume called Movement of Destiny. His particular style is the “quotation wrap-around,” in which he writes long sentences with his own words, and includes in them tiny snippets of quotations from the writings of Ellen White, sometimes as small as two or three words. He who traces these small snippets to their sources, and examines their context, will experience a series of shocks. We submit an example.

On page 497 of Movement of Destiny Dr. Froom presents a paragraph on the human nature of Christ over which he places this heading: Took Sinless Nature Before the Fall

Beneath this heading he arranges a series of brief quotations from Ellen White, including this line:

“He did not in the least participate in its sin.”

If you look at those two lines for a moment, you will surely have some questions. What sin was there in the sinless nature of Adam before his fall that Christ might have participated in? None whatever. There was no sin of any kind in Adam before his fall. Why, then, did Ellen White write a senseless statement like that? What was the matter with Ellen White? Deeply perplexed, we go to the source, and discover that as Ellen White wrote it, the statement actually looked like this:

In taking upon Himself man’s nature in its fallen condition, Christ did not in the least participate in its sin.” Signs of the Times, June 9, 1898. (Emphasis supplied)

We gaze at this in disbelief. This is the ultimate violation of context. The writer has been represented as having said the exact opposite of what she actually did say. This was done by a scholar with a Doctor of Philosophy degree, a seminary professor. And this is not an isolated example. It is typical. In my book, The Word Was Made Flesh, I devote 33 pages to exposing, point by point, the wrongful manipulations of evidence in the paragraph presented by Dr. Froom. I also present conclusive evidence that the statement given to Walter Martin, that our church had never believed that Christ came to earth in the human nature of fallen man, was a methodological monstrosity and a historical fraud. And Dr. Froom put this out over his own signature. How could it happen?

Did not Ellen White tell us how it could happen? I am convinced that she did.

Dr. Edward Heppenstall served for many years as chairman of the Systematic Theology department of our theological seminary at Andrews University. He wrote several books in defense of Calvinistic falsehoods. His specialty was self contradiction, sometimes between two different books, and sometimes within a single book.

Contradictions between two different books.

In 1975 Southern Publishing Association published a book called Perfection, The Impossible Possibility. Dr. Heppenstall wrote a section in it. In this section there are twenty-one statements that it is impossible, even by the power of God, for Christians to stop sinning. Here is a sample:

“The Bible rejects every possibility of our reaching sinless perfection in this life.” Ibid., 73.

In 1974 The Review and Herald Publishing Association had published a book written entirely by Dr. Heppenstall entitled, Salvation Unlimited. In this book there are fifteen firm statements that it is possible, by the power of God, for Christians to stop sinning. Here is a sample:

“We need to commit ourselves to that love from God and from His Son that issues in our deliverance from all that is sinful. Let us give full scope to His incomparable love and law in our lives. The power of the Holy Spirit within us is sufficient to make us like Him, to keep His commandments, and to know Him whom to know is life eternal.” Ibid., 236.

Contradictions within a single book.

In 1977 the Review and Herald published the book, The Man Who Is God, written entirely by Dr. Heppenstall. In this volume Dr. Heppenstall lays caution aside and goes all out in defense of Calvinistic falsehoods. And he repeatedly contradicts himself. If we present a series of questions related to his subject matter to this book, we are confronted by a bewildering array of self-contradictory answers.

1. Was Christ conceived as all men are? Yes, page 60. No, page 135.

2. Was Christ born as all men are? Yes, pages 24, 25, 125. No, pages 126, 135.

3. Was Christ born with the same flesh and blood that we have? Yes, pages 36, 86, 91, 136. No, page 137.

4. Is sin a thing of the flesh? Yes, page 137. No, page 138.

5. Did Christ have advantages in meeting temptation that we do not have? Yes, pages 132-133. No, pages 86, 90-91.

6. Was Christ born into the same state or condition that we are? Yes, pages 24, 91, 98. No, pages 126, 129, 132-133.

7. Is this state or condition into which all men are born actually guilt? Yes, page 146. No, page 121.

8. Did Christ take human nature as it was before Adam’s fall? Yes, page 155. No, page 121.

9. Is Christian character perfection possible? Yes, pages 120, 125, 166. No, page 147.

10. Is original sin a matter of man’s nature? Yes, pages 108, 118, 132, 135. No, pages 107, 109, 122.

Three times I have heard Dr. Heppenstall make the statement, “We must not let Ellen White veto the scriptures.” I submit that when a man publishes a book exalting Calvinistic falsehoods, containing incredible self-contradictions, then accuses Ellen White of vetoing the scriptures because she disagrees with him, that he is not a well man. He has the affliction that Ellen White and the Apostle Paul have described for us. He has lost the ability to distinguish between truth and error.

Dr. Desmond Ford taught at Avondale College and Pacific Union College. On October 27, 1979, he made a public attack on the sanctuary doctrine. I was one of those who were asked to analyze his arguments and send a written report to the General Conference. The first thing that I noticed was that he now admitted that he had been disbelieving the sanctuary doctrine for many years, although he had firmly denied this when others had suspected it of him. I discovered, as I went through his presentation, that his particular specialty was the employment of artificial, manufactured, falsified evidence. He made false statements about the Scriptures, the Spirit of Prophecy, and other sources as well. I counted twenty-six arguments against the sanctuary doctrine in his presentation. Of these, I reckoned twenty–three to be totally fictitious, and the other three to be half truths. I was reminded that when a half truth is presented as if it were an entire truth, it can have the effect of an untruth.

Dr. Ford alleged that: The word “cleanse” is not in Daniel 8:14 and Leviticus 16 in Hebrew, (it is); that modern translations do not use “cleanse,” (some do); that in his own commentary he refused to relate Daniel 8:14 to Leviticus 16, (he did not see his Daniel, p. 175); that most versions translate Hebrews 9:12 as “most holy place,” (they do not); that bulls and goats were sacrificed only on the day of atonement, (they were not, see Leviticus 4); that the high priest had no distinctive work in the holy place, (he did, see Exodus 30:7 and Hebrews 7:26-27); that Adventists invented the concept of a movable throne, (we did not, see Daniel 7:9-10, Revelation 4:2-3, and Ezekiel 1); that Ellen White said the day of atonement began in 31 AD, (she did not, see Great Controversy, 409, Patriarchs and Prophets, 350, and Early Writings, 251); that she made double applications of the earthquake prophecies in Revelation, (she did not, see Great Controversy, 304 and 637). Other problems were as grievous as these, but are too technical for this paper.

A man who does things like this is either being deliberately dishonest, which I do not want to believe, or he suffers from the affliction described by Ellen White and the Apostle Paul—he has lost the ability to distinguish between truth and untruth. He apparently believes his own fictions to be true.

Dr. Helmut Ott teaches at Southern College. In 1987 he published a book called Perfect In Christ. It would be better entitled Sinning In Satan. The purpose of the book is to prove that Ellen White taught that overcoming sin in this life is impossible, and that God does not expect that of us. He maintains that this is the correct understanding of Ellen White’s writings. Inasmuch as she had written the opposite not less than 4500 times, his project required some enormous distortion, twisting, and misrepresentation of her words, as well as of the Scriptures. Here is a sample of Dr. Ott’s work, in reference to the robe of Christ’s righteousness:

“Clothing is never an integral part of those wearing it. It is some-thing that is put upon someone, an outward cover intended to make a person look appropriate.” Ibid., 22.

Compare Revelation 19:7-8: “Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him, for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready. And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints.”

But now let us permit Ellen White to speak for herself: “The wedding garment represents the character which all must possess who shall be accounted fit guests for the wedding.” Christ’s Object Lessons, 307.

“By the wedding garment in the parable is represented the pure, spotless character which Christ’s true followers will possess.” Christ Object Lessons, 310.

“By His perfect obedience He has made it possible for every human being to obey God’s commandments. When we submit ourselves to Christ, the heart is united to His heart, the will is merged in His will, the mind becomes one with His mind, the thoughts are brought into captivity to Him; we live His life. This is what it means to be clothed in the garment of His righteousness.” Christ’s Object Lessons, 312. (Emphasis supplied)

And the other side of the picture is this: “The righteousness of Christ will not cover one cherished sin.” Christ’s Object Lessons, 316.

We tremble for those who read and believe Dr. Ott’s book and continue sinning, confident that they will be covered by the robe of Christ’s righteousness. We tremble even more for Dr. Ott. How well Ellen White wrote: “Religious teachers have led souls to perdition, while professing to guide them to the gates of Paradise.” Christ’s Object Lessons, 640.

Dr. Roy Adams has taught at the theological seminary of the Far East, where I once taught, and is now an associate editor of the Review. In 1994 he published a book entitled The Nature Of Christ. It is the most wildly erratic and irresponsible of the books that we have examined. In his attempts to exalt and defend the falsehoods of Calvinism, he literally stops at nothing. He rewrites portions of the history of our church into pure fiction,and even dares to rewrite the words of Ellen White, to make them serve the purposes of Calvinistic falsehoods. He grossly misrepresents the views of those who are trying to be faithful to the Adventist faith, reviles them, and makes wildly false accusations. And his book is highly reccomended to us by the president of the General Conference, Robert Folkenberg.

The spirit in which Dr. Adams writes is well demonstrated by his reviling. He applies these words to us: Sour, festering, self-appointed, infected with the virus of judgmentalism and suspicion, disease, martyr complex, seasoned controversialists, spirit of accusation, outraged, aghast, scandalized, pathetic, self confessed expert, misguided, wrongheaded, steeped in their cherished position, impenetrable to any theological logic, irresponsible, almost dishonest, deluded self-appointed gurus, disgruntled, pious self-appointed prophets, turncoats, charlatans and scoundrels. He applies these descriptive terms to our reasoning: Mumblings, innuendos, broken faith with the church, specious theology, perfection-istic agitation, petty, picayune, disgusting, speciousness, repetitive, exasperating, subtle spin, overblown, vacuousness, subtle legalism, anger, irritation, anger to new heights, radical articulation, fuss, ingenious theological gymnastics, willfulness, mischief, dishonesty, far-fetched explanations, artificial and contrived, totally fabricated, thoughtlessly, narrow, shallow, facile admonitions, simplistic pietism, shrill, provincial, manipulative, like Jim Jones and David Koresh, dogmatism, trap of perfectionistic legalism, frustration, heated, quoted piously, specious reasoning, vehement, inordinate insistence, maliciously accusing, sharpened tongues, navel-gazing, and self flagellation.

The crescendo of vituperation reaches its climax in a viciously false accusation against Robert Wieland and Donald Short: “Look at the Middle East today. (There was war there.) Look at Northern Ireland. Look at Yugoslavia. Look at Sudan. Yet this is what people like Wieland and Short wish on us.” Ibid., 106.

This is too contemptible to deserve comment, but it may well remind us of Ellen White’s prediction that when apostasy in our church has reached its climax, our greatest enemies will be the false brethren who once walked among us. And what is the crime that we have committed, that has called forth such venomous language? Simply that we want to remain faithful to Adventism, and not change our faith to Calvinism. Visualize a court scene in which faithful Seventh-day Adventists are being put on trial for their faith. The prosecuting attorney calls Dr. Adams to the witness stand. Need we question what hatred and false accusations will pour forth from his lips?

We have said that Dr. Adams even presumes to rewrite Ellen White’s words in order to make them serve the purposes of Calvinism. He was displeased by the following statement by Ellen White in Christ’s Object Lessons, 69.

“When the character of Christ shall be perfectly reproduced in His people, then He will come to claim them as his own.”

Dr. Adams “rephrased” it like this: “When the spirit of unselfish love and labor for others will have fully ripened in the character of His people, then He will come to claim them as His own.”

The words “character of Christ” have been removed, and the words “spirit of unselfish love and labor for others” have been put in their place. Why? Is there something wrong with the character of Christ being reproduced in His people? And what of the thousands of other references in Ellen White’s writings that testify to character perfection by the power of God? Will Dr. Adams undertake to rewrite them all? Do we need to have the Spirit of Prophecy rewritten for us? And is Dr. Adams qualified to rewrite the Spirit of Prophecy? What do you think?

Dr. Adams writes on page 120 of his book: “The people I most admire—whether within the Adventist church or out of it . . . are those who never dwell on the subject of perfection or sinlessness.”

That clearly excludes Ellen White. And it forcefully reminds us of that strange manner of madness, that mental impairment, that is described for us by Ellen White and by the Apostle Paul, the madness that begins with “They received not the love of the truth,” and ends with “They are unable to distinguish between truth and error, right and wrong, light and darkness.”

We are clearly approaching the long awaited crisis in Seventh-day Adventist history. We observe that the hatred toward the truth manifested by these afflicted persons grows more intense as they go along. We cannot doubt that there will be more. We must prepare ourselves to encounter worse manipulation of evidence, more ludicrous self-contradictions, more brazen falsifications of evidence, greater violence to the Spirit of Prophecy, and more viciously and maliciously false accusations.

Under these circumstances, it is imperative that we take a clear-eyed look at the situation. Let us not deceive ourselves that these strange actions are only human error. They go far, far beyond that definition. Men who do things like this are either dishonest persons who are deliberately trying to deceive us, or they are suffering from the self-induced mental impairment, the manner of madness, that the inspired writers have warned us about. We have to believe one or the other, and neither is a happy choice. Whichever view is correct, the result is certain to be some very difficult times ahead of us. Only in the power of God and by the grace of God can we hope to survive.

“The prudent man foreseeth the evil.” Proverbs 27:12.

Th evil looms largely and clearly ahead of us. How imperative then that we know the truth, love the truth, and learn to trust God even in the most forbidding circumstances. We must learn to “put not your trust in princes.” We must not follow a multitude to do evil, and we must never let ourselves lose sight of the final result of this great conflict. The truth will ultimately triumph, and triumph gloriously. We must triumph with it. May God bless you.

The End

The Perfect Man

Would you like to know what it takes to be a perfect man? The Bible gives the answer in James 3:2–13. Verse 2 says, “If any man offend not in word, the same is a perfect man, and able also to bridle the whole body.” The Living Bible says that “if anyone can control his tongue, it proves that he has perfect control over himself in every other way.”

Jesus tells us in Matthew 15:10, 11, “Hear and understand: not that which goeth into the mouth defileth a man; but that which cometh out of the mouth, this defileth a man.” This is speaking about eating with unwashed hands—part of the ceremonial law, the tradition of the elders (see Matthew 15:1, 2). Jesus goes on to tell us what the reason is: “Those things which proceed out of the mouth come forth from the heart; and they defile the man. For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies: these are the things which defile a man: but to eat with unwashen hands defileth not a man.” Matthew 15:18, 19.

This is what Zephaniah has to say about this in Zephaniah 3:13: “The remnant of Israel shall not do iniquity, nor speak lies; neither shall a deceitful tongue be found in their mouth.” Why not? Because their hearts are pure, their minds are unpolluted, their thoughts are untainted by sin.

An Indication of What is in the Heart

We read in Revelation 14:5, speaking about the 144,000, “And in their mouth was found no guile (deceit): for they are without fault before the throne of God.” What does that mean? It means what it says! What does guile include? “Guile includes impurity in all its forms. An impure thought tolerated, an unholy desire cherished, and the soul is contaminated, its integrity compromised.” Signs of the Times, February 8, 1883. Why is there no guile found in their mouth? Because there is no guile in their thoughts, they have no unholy desires, there is no guile in their hearts—their hearts are pure, undefiled, and holy.

The Bible says “for out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh” (Matthew 12:34), our words are only an index of what is in our heart. “He (Jesus) did not sin, neither was guile found in His mouth because there was no guile in His heart. The sentiments cherished in the soul will find their way to the lips. Again I say, Your only safety is looking constantly to Jesus.” Manuscript Releases, vol. 20, 78. From the conversation of a person or the words which come out of his mouth, we can tell what type of a person we are dealing with and what kind of a character that individual has. “Our words are an indication of what is in the heart.” Signs of the Times, May 2, 1894.

“Why are the young generally so backward to talk of a Savior’s love? They can readily talk of dress, and appearance, and of things that are of but little consequence. ‘Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh.’ Those who profess to love God, should delight to talk of Him they love. And if His love is in the heart, the mouth will speak it out. His praise will be in your hearts and on your lips. Your song will be ‘Hear, what the Lord has done for me.’ Your hearts can beat with ardent affection and love for Jesus, who first loved you.” The Youth’s Instructor, February 1, 1856.

We can add to dress and appearance—cars, boats, airplanes, houses, other people, business, sports, investments, etc. Are people guilty of dwelling more upon these themes than on Christ’s love today? How about the words we speak on the Sabbath?

Jesus says to us in Matthew 12:36, 37: “But I say unto you, That every idle (useless, worthless) word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment. For by thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned.”

“The Lord is greatly dishonored when cheap, frivolous words fall from the lips of those whose names are registered on the church books.” Review and Herald, December 31, 1901.

“When in the final judgment we stand before the tribunal of God, it is our words that will justify or condemn us. Much more than we realize is involved in the matter of speech . . . . Let your lips be touched with a live coal from the divine altar. Utter only words of truth. Watch and pray, that your words and deeds may ever confess Christ.” The Voice in Speech and Song, 21.

“Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers.” Ephesians 4:29. What is corrupt communication according to the dictionary? “Morally bad, rotten, wicked.”

Let’s see what the Spirit of Prophecy says about that. “The word ‘corrupt’ means here any word that would make an impression detrimental to holy principles and undefiled religion, any communication that would eclipse the view of Christ, and blot from the mind true sympathy and love. It includes impure hints, which, unless instantly resisted, lead to great sin. Upon everyone is laid the duty of barring the way against corrupt communication.” In Heavenly Places, 175.

“Not one word is to be spoken unadvisedly (without careful consideration).” Christ’s Object Lessons, 337. How many words? “Not one.” “Every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment.” Matthew 12:36.

So why are men doing it anyhow and letting all these useless words proceed out of their mouths? Men do not realize or do not want to realize that they are accountable for their words and that they are even being recorded. “Could the veil which separates the visible from the invisible world be swept back, and the children of men behold an angel recording every word and deed, which they must meet again in the judgment, how many words that are daily uttered would remain unspoken.” Great Controversy, 487.

Before we speak we need to put our brain in gear! We need to think before we speak! Isn’t that correct? Is that easy? Why do people speak before they think? Because they are not in control! Who is in control?

Gossip and Evil Speaking

Let’s look at several types of speech that God despises. First of all evil speaking . How serious is evil speaking ? “Evil-thinking and evil- speaking are a great offense in the sight of God, and those who do these things are not born of the Spirit, but of the flesh.” The Home Missionary, December 1, 1894. “Evil- speaking is a two-fold curse, falling more heavily upon the speaker than upon the hearer. He who scatters the seeds of dissension and strife, reaps in his own soul the deadly fruits. How miserable is the tale-bearer, the surmiser of evil! He is a stranger to true happiness.” Signs of the Times, February 8, 1883. “No evil speaking  . . . will escape the lips of Him who is following Christ.” Christ’s Object Lessons, 337.

Who is the promoter of evil- speaking ? “Evil- speaking ” is “of Satan.” Testimonies, vol. 6, 42. “An earnest effort should be made in every church to put away evilspeaking . . . as among the sins productive of the greatest evils in the church.” Testimonies, vol. 5, 609.

We must help each other in this area, not to encourage this evil listening! “Let your conversation be of such a nature that you will have no need to repent of it . . . If a word is dropped that is detrimental to the character of a friend or brother, never encourage this evil speaking ; for it is the work of the enemy. Remind the speaker that God’s Word forbids this kind of conversation.” Our High Calling, 181.

Gossip is a serious problem within the professed people of God! Gossip is sin and “should not be tolerated among the followers of God.” Testimonies, vol. 5, 241, 242.

It is also a sin to listen to gossip. “The ears must not be defiled by listening to any gossip that faultfinding ones would have us hear, for I not only cause them to sin in allowing them to talk of others’ faults, but I sin myself in listening to them.” Upward Look, 237.

Do you know who usually is a target of evil- speaking , slander and character assassination in the so-called Christian community? Who is it that is being blamed for all the problems? The one that preaches the truth from God’s Word, the one that reproves sin, the one that calls for repentance, the one that calls sin by it’s right name.

Here are several other types of speech that displease God.

“No fretful repining . . . will escape the lips of him who is following Christ.” Christ’s Object Lessons, 337. What is fretful repining? It is unhappiness, discontentment, worrying and complaining.

“No impure suggestions . . . will escape the lips of him who is following Christ.” Christ’s Object Lessons, 337.

What should be done with impure suggestions? “An impure suggestion must be dismissed at once, and pure, elevating thoughts, holy contemplation, be entertained, thus obtaining more and more knowledge of God by training the mind in the contemplation of heavenly things.” Mind, Character, and Personality, vol. 1, 236.

Jesting and Joking

Should we be able to depend on what a Christian says when he makes a statement? Or should we weigh his words? Does he mean what he says or does he say what he means? Jesus says in Matthew 5:37: “But let your communication be Yea, yea; Nay, nay; for whatsoever is more than these cometh of evil.” “All you need to say is ‘Yes’ if you mean yes. ‘No’ if you mean no; anything more than this comes from the evil one” (Jerusalem Bible). Isn’t this good advice?

What about the phrase, “I am just kidding” or “I am joking?”

“There is among you too much love of jesting and joking, which is not convenient, and which in no way strengthens the soul or the intellect. Jesting and joking may please a class of cheap minds, but the influence of this kind of conduct is destructive to spirituality . . . Guard your words. Let sobriety and sound common sense characterize your conversation. Do not trifle with the purity and nobility of your souls by condescending to indulgence in stale jokes, and in cultivating habits of trifling conversation. The requirement of God is explicit on these points.” The Youth’s Instructor, May 30, 1895. “To him that ordereth his conversation aright will I shew the salvation of God.” Psalms 50:23.

What should we do when we have inherited a loose tongue? “The tongue needs to be educated and disciplined and trained to speak of the glories of heaven, to talk of the matchless love of Jesus Christ.” Bible Commentary, vol. 3, 1146.

What should we do when we are in the company of someone who is talking nonsense? “When in the company of those who indulge in foolish talk, it is our duty to change the subject of conversation if possible. By the help of the grace of God we should quietly drop words or introduce a subject that will turn the conversation into a profitable channel.” Christ’s Object Lessons, 337. “When in society, when compelled to be among the frivolous, the careless and inconsiderate, you are not to descend to their level and engage in cheap and frivolous talk, but dart up your petitions to heaven that the God of all grace will keep your souls in the love of Christ.” Sermons and Talks, vol. 2, 73.

The Ministers

What about ministers who preach from the pulpit? Are there guidelines for them in this respect?

“When a minister bearing the solemn message of warning to the world, receives the hospitable courtesies of friends and brethren, and neglects the duties of a shepherd of the flock, and is careless in his example and deportment, engaging with the young in trifling conversation, in jesting and joking, and in relating humorous anecdotes to create laughter, he is unworthy of being a gospel minister, and needs to be converted before he is entrusted with the care of the sheep and lambs.” Gospel Workers, 131, 132.

What is a trifling conversation? It is conversation that has little or no value; it is unimportant, insignificant, shallow or foolish.

“The minister who mixes story-telling with his discourses is using strange fire. God is offended, and the cause of truth is dishonored, when his representatives descend to the use of cheap, trifling words.” Review and Herald, December 22, 1904.

“What is the object of the ministry? Is it to mix the comical with the religious? The theater is the place for such exhibitions. If Christ is formed within, if the truth with its sanctifying power is brought into the inner sanctuary of the soul, you will not have jolly men, neither will you have sour, cross, crabbed men to teach the precious lessons of Christ to perishing souls.” Evangelism, 644.

Unsympathetic Speech

“While we lay aside all vanity, all foolish talking, jesting, and joking, we are not to become cold, unsympathetic, and unsocial. The Spirit of the Lord is to rest upon you until you shall be like a fragrant flower from the garden of God. You are to keep talking of the light, of Jesus, the Sun of Righteousness, until you shall change from glory to glory, from character to character, going on from strength to strength, and reflecting more and more of the precious image of Jesus.” My Life Today, 196.

There are two extremes: vanity, foolish talking, jesting and joking on one side and being cold, unsympathetic and unsociable on the other. We need the grace of God to know the difference! How can we only speak words that please Jesus? “Let us guard against speaking words that discourage. Let us resolve never to engage in evil-speaking and backbiting. Let us refuse to serve Satan by implanting seeds of doubt. Let us guard against cherishing unbelief, or expressing it to others. Many, many times I have wished that there might be circulated a pledge containing a solemn promise to speak only those words that are pleasing to God . . . Let us begin to discipline the tongue, remembering always that we can do this only by disciplining the mind; for ‘out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh.’ ” Review and Herald, May 26, 1904.


What will the conversations of converted people be like? They will not be: frivolous, empty, light, trifling, low, vulgar, foolish, vain, abusive, bitter, impatient, hasty, angry, severe, dictatorial, untruthful, deceitful, impure, boastful, etc. There will be no evil- speaking , gossip, or talebearing, jesting or joking. A true Christian’s conversation will be: uplifting, dwelling on Christ’s words and character, on the plan of redemption, on heavenly things, on God’s goodness and mercy, expressing meekness. Their words will be kind, loving, truthful, dependable, holy, spiritual, encouraging, chaste, upright, honest, unselfish; they will reveal their connection with Christ and show that religion is not merely a profession.

“If any man offend not in word, the same is a perfect man.” James 3:2.

“Now unto Him that is able to keep you from falling (if we are willing and submit to Him), and to present you faultless before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy, to the only wise God our Saviour, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and ever. Amen.” Jude 24, 25.

The End

The Ship that is Going Through

We have been told that what we are about to study is one of the most important subjects that we can study. Ellen White says, “A revival of true godliness among us is the greatest and most urgent of all our needs.” Advent Review and Sabbath Herald, March 22, 1887.

This is both the greatest need that we have and the most urgent. “The most urgent” means that we need it right now. In fact, it says in that statement, that to seek this should be our first work. That was written in 1887.

The Revival Is to Come Among Us

Now let us look at a little two-letter word in that first sentence. It says, “A revival of true godliness among us is the greatest and most urgent of all our needs.” There is a little word there in the center, it is spelled u-s. Who is the us? Now maybe I should give you a hint. This statement was written in the Review and Herald. What is that? That is the church paper of who? The Seventh-day Adventist Church. So who is the “us?” It would be Seventh-day Adventists. So what is the greatest need of the Seventh-day Adventist Church? I am not talking only about home churches or the historic Adventist movement worldwide, but about every person who professes, anywhere in the world, to be a Seventh-day Adventist—all the conference churches, all the institutions, the General Conference—everything. What is our greatest need? A revival of true godliness is our greatest and the most urgent of our needs.

What Is Godliness?

Have you thought recently about what godliness is? We are not going to look so much at what, as we are going to start looking at how. However, if you want to understand more about it, read the first chapter of 1 Peter very carefully and you will understand what godliness is. Godliness is Godlikeness. What is God like? Peter explains it there. He quotes from the Old Testament where the Lord says to His people, “Be holy, for I am holy.” Leviticus 11:45; 19:2; 20:7. God and His law are holy. See Romans 7:12. A life in harmony with that law will be a holy life.

How Will This Revival Occur?

What we want to take a look at is how. It does not do you any good to know what needs to happen unless you start to understand how it happens. How is this revival of true godliness supposed to happen in Adventism? People are asking the question, will the Seventh-day Adventist denomination or structure go through to glory? There are a number of different answers that are being given to this question. Within the last year or so there has been an increasing number of people who have given a resounding “No” to that question. What they are saying is, “No, the Seventh-day Adventist Church structure is not going through to glory, because it is Babylon and it is just waiting to be destroyed.” There are also other people that believe very similar to that, but they say that it is not Babylon quite yet, but that it is on the verge and then it will become Babylon. They are not sure that the actual decree that it is Babylon has been pronounced. The whole issue that some people believe that the structure is Babylon has to be addressed because there are people all over the world starting to say that, and the question is, “On what basis are they saying it?” Where is the theological evidence?

Spiritual Babes

Before we go on to some other answers that are given to that question, I want you to see a few texts of Scripture. “Whom will He [that is the Lord] teach knowledge? And whom will He make to understand the message? Those just weaned from milk? Those just drawn from the breasts?” Isaiah 28:9. That is, those who are spiritual babies. The Bible talks about spiritual babies—people who have just accepted the Christian faith. Peter addressed people who had just accepted the Christian faith and he says; “As newborn babes, desire the pure milk of the word, that you may grow thereby.” 1 Peter 2:2.

If you were in trouble in your financial life, or in your business life, or in your marriage, would you go to a baby to find a way out of your trouble? Why not? That is what people do spiritually all the time! People that have been Christians for two or three years feel that they know enough about the Christian religion that they should solve the theological problems of the Christian church. See 1 Timothy 3:6, 10. You do not go to a baby Christian to find out the answers to the difficult problems you have. There is nothing against being a baby; we all love babies. We want them to grow, but we do not go to them to get the answers to hard problems.

No Lie is of the Truth

Let us look at another principle. “I have not written to you because you do not know the truth, but because you know it, and that no lie is of the truth.” 1 John 2:21. What does it mean that no lie is of the truth? “All truth, whether in nature or in revelation, is consistent with itself in all its manifestations.” Patriarchs and Prophets, 114. You can look up all the texts in the Bible, you can look up all the passages in the Spirit of Prophecy about Babylon, and if you know the truth, you will be able to see that they all agree. If they do not all agree, there is something the matter with what you believe. You have not studied it out enough. The truth is always consistent with itself, no lie is of the truth. If two things are the truth, they will not contradict.

Is the Probation for the Church Just About Over?

There are a lot of people today who are being asked, “Do you believe that the Seventh-day Adventist Church structure is going to go through to glory?” An answer that is given is that the structure is in the same position that Israel was in just before the crucifixion.

Do you remember when Jesus came into Jerusalem? It talks about it in the book Desire of Ages, 578. It says, “When the fast westering sun should pass from sight in the heavens, Jerusalem’s day of grace would be ended.” It was not yet too late. Right at that time they could have turned around, they could have accepted the Messiah. The door was still open for them to do it, but they would not. Some people say they believe that the structure is in that kind of a situation. It is just about over, it is just about too late, but there is still time to turn around.

What is the day of grace all about? What is salvation all about? It is about having my sins taken away. Salvation from sin involves two things. First, Jesus delivers me from my guilt. Secondly, He delivers me from the power of sin in my life. That is what salvation is about. That is what primitive godliness is about. That is what our greatest and most urgent need is.

If your besetting sin is beating your wife, Jesus does not save you so that you can go on beating your wife. He wants to save you from that so that you do not do it anymore. A person is not saved from beating his wife, if he is still beating his wife. He is not saved yet. Jesus came to save you from your sins. Are people saved from alcohol if they are still drinking? No! That is the gospel according to antichrist, that you can be saved while you are still going on living a life of sin. That is taking such a large hold over much of the Christian world that there are actually people today that are killing people and they believe that they are saved because they go and confess it to their priest. But friend you are not saved while you are living in sin. Nobody will be taken to heaven who has sin in their life. To be saved from sin means you are pardoned for the guilt of your past sins and you overcome so that you do not go on sinning. See Romans 6 and 8. The church that goes through to glory must give up all sin, repent of it, confess it and forsake it; and by the power of the Holy Spirit practice righteousness.

What Organization Is Going Through to Glory?

Now I want to look at the traditional or the most common answer to this question. The majority of Seventh-day Adventists today do not believe that the denomination will be cast aside as was the Jewish nation. They believe that the Seventh-day Adventist Church denomination will go through to glory, and if it will go through to glory, you had better stay with it. We had better find out what is true from the Bible.

Some of you know that a few years ago, not by my choice, the local Seventh-day Adventist conference church of which I was a member disfellowshipped me. So I am not part of that structure anymore. After that happened, I had a friend that wrote me a letter and indicated that I was no longer part of the church. If that is so, I need to do something about it right away. I want to go to heaven. I do not want to have a false hope and think that I am going to heaven and have the Lord come and say, John, you are not part of the bride of Christ. You will have to stay here. We must understand the answer to this question really well. It involves eternal consequences. When Jesus comes back to this earth again, He is coming to take His bride back to heaven and those are the only people living upon the earth that will be going. We will be lost if we are not part of His bride. See Revelation 19:7, 8.

The Wheat and the Tares?

Now of course, the people that believe that the Adventist Church structure will not be cast aside as was the Jewish church, but will go through to glory, are not naive enough to believe that every member of the church will be part of that triumphant body. The way they explain that is generally with the parable of the wheat and the tares. They say, “We know that there is a lot of apostasy and corruption in the church now, but before Jesus comes, He is going to move it all out.” That is encouraging! Let’s see if we can figure out how that is going to happen. Remember that we are going to study how?

The Bottom Line

Has it crossed your mind that if you are ever going to find out the truth, it might be of vital importance for you to know who and what the church is? You see, these different teachings are based on a different definition of who and what the church is. Do you think that God knows who the church is? I am not asking this irreverently, but I want you to think it through. If God knows who the church is, do you suppose that any time He wanted to, He could tell one of His prophets who the church is? If a prophet came to you and told you who the church was, would you believe it? That is a hard question. I have noticed that when prophets come and tell people who and what the church is, they do not believe it. I remember hearing people read some of the plainest definitions in the Spirit of Prophecy about who and what the church is, and you know what they would do? They would explain it all away. Have you ever seen anybody do that?

Balancing Statements

The important question is, what does the prophet actually say, not what do I think? Is it enough if a prophet just comes right out and says this is what it is? Somehow with this subject, it is not enough for most people. There is such a deep prejudice, that most people will not accept it. They have another definition and they say, “Well, there are balancing statements.” Have you ever heard that expression? There are balancing statements. Red is red. “Oh, no, it’s not, there’s balancing statements.” What does that mean? It is another way of saying that there are other statements that contradict it. What did we read in 1 John 2:21? There is no lie that is of the truth. If it is all true, does it all have to agree? There could never be a balancing statement that would contradict the truth.

Faithful Souls Constitute God’s Church

In the inspired writings, are there plain definition statements about who and what the church is?

I am going to share two plain statements with you. I do not know why these statements are not accepted, but they are not. Almost every time I have heard anyone read them, they try to explain them away. But when I read them, they still say the same thing. This is a plain statement that defines who and what the church is. This is the first chapter in Acts of the Apostles, and the whole chapter is about the church. I will just read one sentence. It says, “From the beginning . . .” Is this talking about the church triumphant? When does the church triumph? It triumphs right at the end, just before Jesus comes. People say that it is talking about the church triumphant. Now wait a minute, this is talking about the church from the beginning, not at the end. “From the beginning, faithful souls have constituted the church on earth.” Now does that sound to you like a plain definition statement of who and what the church is? Is this statement talking about a perfected church? No, a faithful soul can make many mistakes and have many defects of character not yet overcome. Peter and the rest of the twelve disciples are described in the Spirit of Prophecy as faithful souls but they certainly made many mistakes. And this statement is not talking about an invisible church either—look up the context.

Somebody may say that they have so many objections that have not been answered. I have checked out these hundred or so objections that people raise and every single one of them can be answered from the Bible and the Spirit of prophecy in simple language. The biggest question is, can you simply believe what God says, or does God have final authority in your life? Have you made the commitment? Are you really part of the church or do you just go to church? Jesus is looking for the very same thing today as He was looking for in the Garden of Eden. He wanted to know from Adam and Eve, “Can I trust you”? The root word for trust, faith, faithful and believe in the Greek, is all the same. The church is faithful souls. Who are they? They are the people that believe. They are the people who have made a public commitment with the Lord. See Matthew 10:32, 33. Jesus is looking for people that He can depend on and He is going to find them. There is no question that He is going to find them, but the question is, Am I going to be one of them? When things happen that you cannot explain and it seems like other people let you down, can Jesus still depend on you?

“Those who keep God’s commandments, those who live not by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God, compose the church of the living God.” Manuscript Release, vol. 1, 296. Who is it? God knows who it is. He tells us, This is who it is: it is the faithful souls, it is the ones that don’t live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds out of My mouth. They say, “Lord, whatever You tell me, by Your grace I will do it.” God says, “That is the people that compose My church.” When Jesus comes, what is going to matter is not whether or not I have my name on the books down here, it is whether He will recognize me as being part of His own. See Isaiah 66:5.

When you marry somebody, that person then belongs to you. Jesus is coming to get His bride—people that belong to Him. Do you belong to him? “Oh, yes,” somebody says, “I belong to him.” How do you know? Jesus says this is the way you know it. “If you live by every word that proceeds out of My mouth.” Do you want to be part of that group?

The End

Letter From Papua New Guinea – February 19, 1996

Dear Brother Wal & Sist. Betty,

Hello and good day to you. Greetings and Christian loves from ONG laymen. Hope you are fine down there. I’d like to extend greetings from the fellow brenthren and the L.M. Kainanatu, to you and your family and the Brethrens. Thanks for your good companionship and encouragements at the Loudcry Camp last year at Brisbane. What a good time.

Well, it’s a busy year for me and our laymen and fellow workers. We are busy getting things organized in our Lay Ministering. The Laymembers Association of S.D.A. Church—PNG has already sponsored seven permanent workers. Two evangelists, Pr. Livingston and myself and five missionaries who will be pastoring about 25-30 churches. We’ve also sponsored 60-70 volunteer lay missionaries over almost 15-19 provinces or states. There are about 5-7 churches (new ones) under construction and more churches are splitting up from the organized church because of the shaking going on here.

We’re under threats from the Conference. The pastors and church leaders have given commands to stone us. This was been announced thru their preachings in the past weeks on the rostrum during the service. Commanding them saying we were “the Achans” and are to be stoned. Last week the pastors and church members mobilized the heathens to stone me in the public preaching in Geroka town and this week they captured me with bush knives while I was running an evangelistic meeting in one of the big villages. The Lord put me out of their way and they just came and destroyed the pulpit so we have to build it again, and continue with our meeting. It may sound to you as an early persecution, yes! Please pray for us.

The biggest project is also underway amidst such disturbances. The L.M.A. Office Complex which will contain the printing press, the library, the bookshop, the main office, the guest house, the pastors house, and the computer room. We are still short of funds to start and complete the project. As an Interium Secretary and Treasurer, I’m busy writing letters for appeals and doing some secretarial work for the churches and most of my time I’m preaching here and there with Pastor Livingston side by side, and the laymen. Hope you don’t mind the long stories I’ve told. So far we’ve dedicated two new churches and we’re looking forward to dedication of 15-17 new churches this year.

Well, may God bless you. Hope to hear from you sometimes. Thank you for your attention. Bye Bye.

Please don’t forget that: “It’s our duty to do all in our power to avert the threaten danger . . . a vast responsibility is devolting upon men and women of prayer thru out the land to petition that God may sweep back the cloud of evil, and give a few more years of grace to work for our Master.” Review and Herald, December 11, 1888.

Your brother in Christ,

Harold S. Peiko

Africa, The Soul Winning Gardens of Opportunity

The Seventh-day Adventist movement has a tremendous heritage in foreign mission work. J.N. Andrews was the first missionary that went into a foreign land to spread the good news of salvation and a soon coming Savior. Since that time thousands have spent their lives working for the less fortunate in various places of the world. As we grew up, we all knew someone who was a missionary. We listened to their stories from South America, China, India, Africa, and other far-away places. Most of us who grew up within Adventism have probably, at one time or another, dreamed of going to one of these far-away places to be a missionary.

What has that heritage of foreign missionaries left to the movement today? What is the condition of the work in these foreign lands? And what is our responsibility within Historic Adventism to continue the work that has gone before us?

Today there are approximately nine million people in the world professing to be Seventh-day Adventists. North America has not kept up the pace of growth that foreign missions have. In most places of the world today you can find Seventh-day Adventists, and in many, many places you can find Adventist churches, schools, and hospitals. This work was established with tremendous sacrifice. I was told by one missionary that West Africa was considered the white man’s grave. During the 1920s, as families of missionaries went there to establish the work, almost without exception one of the family members would become sick and die within the first six weeks after arrival.

What is the spiritual condition of these churches around the world? It is very much like it is here in the United States. You see worldliness, broken homes, and celebration. The structure is demanding absolute allegiance to the church leadership, as they embrace liberalism and apostasy, and push out those who are trying to hold up the law of God as the great principle of life. So we ask the question, Is there any value today in the work that was established in such sacrifice? The answer is, Absolutely. There are faithful souls around the world who are upholding the great standards of truth that God has given His people. Many of those people are no longer accepted by the structure, even though they are standing faithful to the great principles of truth that so many today want to put down and label unchristian.

What is our responsibility to other faithful souls around the world who are working at tremendous sacrifice to continue the work of spreading the Three Angels’ Messages in their area? We need to hold up their hands so that they can do more. In many places of the world today, God has people who are working for Him who don’t even have enough food to eat. I believe that while we are still in a condition of plenty, we need to share what we have. However, we have a responsibility to do more than just share so that they will have enough food to keep going; we also need to help them with their evangelism. The ground is so fertile. Unlike the United States, where it is getting harder and harder to develop interests, people are responding in these foreign countries.

Let me share with you what is happening in Ghana, West Africa (I could tell you stories about other places also). One year ago, Steps to Life decided to help the Historic Adventists in that area for two main reasons. First, people in that area are interested in learning about the Bible, and the Historic Adventists there are organized. There are over fifty churches in the country that are organized into a group called the Historic Adventist Church. The group has fourteen pastors. They are responsible to an executive council that is elected by the national council. The national council is made up of two delegates from each of the smaller churches and three delegates from each of the bigger churches. It was our opinion that with that kind of organization, outreach could be followed up in an effective manner. We saw that new interests would have church groups to fellowship with and to be nurtured into Christian maturity. Their headquarters have been in the bedroom of a church member’s home, but with money sent by you, the donors, they now have a building for the headquarters and a clinic. We were also enabled to help them with some church buildings. We have been able to send money monthly for the added support of the ministry and for evangelism, and also a Bible correspondence school has been started.

God is blessing these efforts, and we praise Him for the opportunity to be a part of the work. The Bible correspondence school is being managed by Joseph Class Peters in Accra, Ghana. He established an office in the church that was purchased there. He then advertised in two of the national newspapers, with two consecutive ads in each paper. There are now over one thousand students enrolled in the school, all from those four advertisements. You should read the letters from the people enrolling—there are teachers, business people, government workers, bankers, and students who write and say that they would like to learn more about the Bible! When the students complete their fourteenth lesson, their name will be given to a pastor or church elder in their area for a follow-up. It is exciting to watch this happen! This would not be possible without the continued support from the historic Adventists in this country. We are working toward developing programs in other parts of the world also. We want to be faithful to each opportunity that God directs us to help with.

Africa is a garden of opportunity for soul winning. You can sponsor a bible worker for between $75.00 and $100.00 per month. Evangelistic campaigns are conducted for between $400.00 and $500.00. Last year they conducted an evangelistic series in Tema, and now they have a church with 27 people. They are meeting in a rented school house.

Is the movement today benefiting from the strong heritage of foreign missionaries? Absolutely! Does our responsibility for spreading the gospel reach outside the borders of the United States? It certainly does! We are all members of a body, and one part of the body shows care for the other parts. “There should be no schism in the body, but that the members should have the same care for one another. And if one member suffers, all the members suffer with it; or if one member is honored, all the members rejoice with it. Now you are the body of Christ, and members individually.” 1 Corinthians 12:25–27.

As we respond to our brothers and sisters and develop the fellowship of believers so that we can carry out the campaign of battle and war in the order of heaven, we will be much more successful against the Devil and will actually see more people in heaven. “He who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. So let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not grudgingly or of necessity; for God loves a cheerful giver.” 2 Corinthians 9:6, 7.

God requires that everyone who has been blessed with means here on this earth should give liberally to those who have little. “The time has come for us to take advance steps. We should beware lest a selfish, covetous spirit shut out the blessing of God. The Lord calls upon us to give of our means to support His cause. He requires more of us than merely the payment of the tithe. . . We should come before Him with both thank-offerings and sin-offerings. Our obligation to God is endless. His work must not languish for want of means. His claims must be met first, at whatever cost or sacrifice. It is time for those who have large possessions to cut down the principal, that God’s work may be extended in foreign lands.” Signs of the Times, September 27, 1883.

It is our duty not only to wait and be ready ourselves for the Second Coming, but also to hasten the soon coming of God by warning others. “Looking for and hastening the coming of the day of God.” 2 Peter 3:12. We need to do all we can to get the last great Message of Mercy to the whole world. “Had the church of Christ done her appointed work as the Lord ordained, the whole world would before this have been warned, and the Lord Jesus would have come to our earth in power and great glory.” Desire of Ages, 634.

The Gospel is going to go to the whole world with or without us. May each one of us search our own hearts as to our duty in spreading the Three Angels’ Messages.

“And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world as a witness to all the nations, and then the end will come.” Matthew 24:14. “Even so, come, Lord Jesus!” Revelation 22:20.

The End

Marvelous Stories of Evangelism

The duty of taking the Three Angels’ Messages to the whole world rests upon us as Historic Seventh-day Adventists. Evan Sadler has had many years of experience as a street evangelist and has been doing what many more of us should be doing—sharing our faith with others. “We are living in a most solemn time. Important responsibilities are resting upon us. . . Angels of God are preparing ears to hear, and hearts to receive the message of warning. And in our very midst honest souls are living who have never yet heard the reasons of our faith. People are perishing for want of knowledge. Not one-hundredth part is being done that might be done to give the third angel’s message to the world.” Review and Herald, October 22, 1914.

May these stories encourage you in your walk with the Lord and embolden you to be a mighty witness for Him.

– The Editors

The Priest that Wept

I had a priest weep once. In 1982 I was staying with a former Catholic couple who are now Seventh-day Adventists, because I had knocked on their door—at that time I only knew five Bible texts! And now the Sabbath was about to come in, and the phone rang. When I answered, my friend Jimmy said, “I’m in the mental institution, I’ve had a nervous breakdown. Would you come and see me?” I said certainly.

We prayed together before I went that I might help this man. When I arrived Jimmy said, “I’ll tell you, Evan, I’m a bit upset. You tell me that the Catholic church has changed the ten commandments and then we go to the priests and they tell us that you’re a heretic!”

But I said, “They didn’t tell you that they didn’t change it did they?”

His answer was, “I wish that there was a priest here and you and he could sort this thing out.” I prayed, “Lord, I pray that you would open Jimmy’s eyes.”

I was there about half an hour talking to this friend in the big lounge, and who do you think walked in the door? It was a priest! Jimmy and I had been talking things over and I had my Bible out, and after this priest walked around and talked to everybody, he came and sat down next to us. He was an old Irishman, 73 years old. He said, “And what would you be doing boys?”

Jimmy said, “Oh, father. We’re just looking at the Bible.”

“Yes, sir,” I said, “We’re just reading the Bible.”

The priest said, “Oh, that’s wonderful! It’s the rock and the pillar of the faith.”

I replied, “It’s the rock and pillar of my faith, sir.”

He said, “Well, what else would you be talking about?”

I said, “Well, sir, we’re talking about deception.”

He said, “Oh, yes? Why would you be talking about that?”

I said, “Well, it says in Matthew 24:37 that as it was in the days of Noah so it would be in the days of the coming of the Son of man. Doesn’t it say that?”

He answered, “It’s true, it’s there!”

I said, “Do you think, sir, that the world will be deceived by things that look good or by things that look bad?”

He said, “Well, the way you put it, it seems they’ll be deceived by the things that look good.”

I said, “That’s right! How many were saved out of the flood?”

He said, “Well, the way you put it, it was four men and four women.”

I said, “That’s right! And what about all the rest of the people that perished, did they think they were right or did they think they were wrong?”

He said, “Well, the way you put it, they must have thought they were right.”

I said, “That’s right! Come down awhile till Jesus was killed—who was right at that time?”

He said, “Well, the way you put it, it must of been only Him.”

I said, “That’s right! What about the major church at the time?”

He said, “Well, they must have been wrong—the way you put it.”

I said, “Does this mean that Jesus was right and the whole of Israel was wrong?”

He said, “That’s right.” And I said, “Now let’s come down to about the sixteenth century.”

He said, “Wait a minute! What are you getting at?” Because he had been set up all the way, hadn’t he? I’d laid the ground, and I wasn’t trying to be funny. God wanted that man in heaven. But you can rest assured, friends, that anyone that will be there is going to have to go on God’s terms.

So he said, “Well, what are you getting at?”

“What I’m getting at, sir, is that the Catholic church has changed the ten commandments.”

He said, “Now, we-we-we-we’ve never done that! We’ve not done that. We’ve only adjusted them!”

I said, “You have changed them. I’ve got the proof.”

He said, “Well, we only adjusted them in the fourth century, but we’ve never changed them.”

I said, “Jimmy, you rang me up and asked me to pray for you that you might see; because the priests told you one thing and I told you something else and you were confused and didn’t know what to believe. And here, by the grace of God, a priest has come along and sat down here and he’s told us that they’ve never changed the ten commandments, they’ve only adjusted them. Isn’t that double-Dutch?”

Jimmy blinked and said, “Yeah.”

I told the priest, which was only my duty, “I can tell you when they changed them, why they changed them, from what they changed them, to what they changed them.”

He wept. He said, “I’ve given me whole life to the church.”

I said, “Brother, it’s time you gave the rest of your life to Jesus; because bricks and mortar can never save you.”

The Evolutionist

A friend and I were on the street one night giving out tracts outside a university in New Zealand. My friend gave a tract to a student outside a McDonalds restaurant and who came along but the professor. A student had met him on the street and had said, “Look at this sacrilege! These people don’t believe in evolution.”

Terrible isn’t it? “These people don’t believe in evolution.” How sad!

He found my friend, and he said, “Did you give this tract out?”

My friend said, “Yes, I did sir, but my friend Evan up the road, he’s responsible for giving the tract out.”

The professor said, “My name is Professor ‘Whatever-His-Name-Is.’ I’m qualified to tell you you’re wrong.”

My friend said, “How come?”

He said, “Because I have a Ph.D.”

My friend said, “Oh my! Is that right? You have a Ph.D.? Whoa!”

The professor said, “Yes.” He didn’t realize my friend was taking the Mickey out of him.

My friend said, “Wow! I can’t argue with that.” The professor grinned a bit. And then my friend said, “But I have a video at home, and it’s pro-Christianity, and it destroys evolution, and it was made by a man with two Ph.Ds. So your own argument is destroyed!”

So the professor’s head dropped and his tongue came out in exhaustion, because God will make fools out of the wise.

One Theologian

One day I was at the airport in Los Angeles and I had said a prayer that the Lord would protect me. I never take airplane flights for granted, I pray for protection. I also prayed that I might be able to talk to somebody on the plane who might be interested in salvation. We were in the air about 15 minutes. I had my old Bible open reading from Peter. I was sitting by the isle and a man was sitting by the window. He said to me, “I see you’ve been reading your Bible.”

I said, “Yeah! That’s the only real thing you can count on in this world.”

He said, “My name is Dr. ‘Such-and-Such’ from Spokane Presbyterian College and I’ve just been holding an evangelical campaign down in Brazil and I’m heading home. . .” He said, during the course of the conversation, that the ten commandments had been nailed to the cross.

I said to him, “The only thing you can count on is the Bible, and there’s only one other thing you can count on sir.”

He said, “What’s that?”

I said, “Throughout history, theologians have always been on the wrong side.”

And he said, “That’s a bit tuff isn’t it?”

I said, “That’s history friend. You tell me when the theologians have been right. At the time of the crucifixion of Christ? At the time of the Babylonian captivity? At the time of the flood? You show to me in history when the theologians have been right. They’ve never been right, the dead sure thing is that they’ve been wrong. Do you believe there’s going to be a judgment or not?”

He said, “Well, I think so.”

I said, “The Bible says there is going to be a judgment. Who do you think God will hold responsible for all the wickedness in the world in the day of judgment?”

He said, “I don’t know, you tell me.”

I said, “People like you. People like you who have said that the ten commandments were nailed to the cross. My Bible says that babes and fools will understand this truth, so I’m qualified to talk to you about this issue. You correct me if I’m wrong because I don’t want to be deluded and I don’t want to lose eternal life and I don’t want to deceive other people. I thought from what I’m seeing in the world that if ever the world needed the ten commandments it’s today, not tomorrow. I thought that Christians kept the ten commandments and heathens didn’t. And I thought Christians kept them not to be saved, that’s legalism. They keep them because they are saved. They don’t keep them in their own power, that’s not acceptable to God; they keep them through the power of the risen Christ in them.”

He couldn’t fault that reasoning. But then I showed him the time of Moses. He grinned and said to me, “One thing, sir, if the ten commandments still stand, I want you to show me where every single one of them is in the New Testament.” He looked at me with a dead serious look on his face because he knew that he had just trapped me—I could see that little grin behind his serious face. He wasn’t a professor for nothing, because he had been dealing with “legalists” for a long time.

“But you know,” I said to him, “that’s an unfair question, sir. And it’s a difficult question, because you know that not one in 10,000 could answer that.”

He said, “Probably not one in 100,000.”

I said, “But you only asked me that question to make your case right and my case wrong. If I could prove to you where every single one of them were in the New Testament, what would that do to your case?” He had not thought about that. He had only asked the question to destroy our case as Adventists and he didn’t know that I was an Adventist yet.

I said, “I’ll show you where every single one of the ten commandments are in the New Testament.” And I showed him Matthew 4:10: “Then saith Jesus unto him . . . it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and Him only shalt thou serve.” He blinked. I showed him 1 John 5:21: “Little children, keep yourselves from idols.” “Let as many servants as are under the yoke count their own masters worthy of all honour, that the name of God and His doctrine be not blasphemed.” 1 Timothy 6:1. “For He spake in a certain place of the seventh day on this wise, And God did rest the seventh day from all His works. And in this place again, If thy shall enter into My rest. Seeing therefore it remaineth that some must enter therein, and they to whom it was first preached entered not in because of unbelief: again, He limiteth a certain day, saying in David, To day, after so long a time; as is said, To day if ye will hear His voice, harden not your hearts. For if Jesus had given them rest, then would He not afterward have spoken of another day. There remaineth therefore a rest to the people of God. For he that is entered into His rest, he also hath ceased from his own works, as God did from His.” Hebrews 4:4–10. “But pray ye that your flight be not in the winter, neither on the Sabbath day.” Matthew 24:20. “I was in the Spirit on the Lord’s day.” Revelation 1:10. “The Sabbath was made for man, and not man for the Sabbath: therefore the Son of man is Lord also of the Sabbath.” Mark 2:27, 28. “Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not kill, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not bear false witness, Thou shalt not covet; and if there be any other commandment, it is briefly comprehended in this saying, namely, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.” Romans 13:9. “Thou shalt do no murder, Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not bear false witness, Honour thy father and thy mother: and, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.” Matthew 19:18, 19. There’s all your ten commandments.

He was visibly shocked. I didn’t tell him why I knew those ten commandments. Two weeks before I left New Zealand, George Burnside posted me a letter. In it was a copy of all the ten commandments in the New Testament. I had said to myself, “I’m going to memorize everyone of those texts, because some day someone’s going to ask me to show them where they are.” Within two weeks it happened.

Then I said, “Well, friend, you asked me that to destroy my case; but your case is now destroyed.”

He said, “I’m going to have to start keeping them and teaching them.”

I said, “Don’t worry if you lose your $100,000 a year salary and your three cars and your big flashy house and your status in your community. Jesus said in Luke that the foxes have holes, the birds have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay His head.”

I believe God answered my prayer and sat me there next to that man. Then he looked at me and said, “You’re a Seventh-day Adventist aren’t you?”

I said, “Well, I never used to be; I used to be a Presbyterian, the same as you. But I found that we were sitting closer to Rome than I’d thought when I was a boy.”

And he said to me, “You know, I want to come fishing in New Zealand sometime.”

I said, “Certainly. Friend, this battle is for real. Alot of people are going to be lost.”

He was visibly shaken. He said, “You know I went to college with Billy Graham, he’s a friend of mine.”

I said, “Wow, is that right? I went to college with Jesus Christ, he’s a friend of mine.”

I read to him 1 Corinthians 11, which says all these things happened for an example to us. I asked him this question, “When Moses brought Israel out of Egypt by the miracle of the Red Sea opening, God had thrown back to the Egyptians their false worship. Have you read of the Seven Last Plagues?”

He said, “Well I know a bit about them.”

“Ah, is that right? Do you know where they are found?”

He said, “Well, they’re in the book of Revelation.”

I said, “That’s right, do you know which chapter.”

He said, “No, not off hand.”

I said, “I’m going to read them to you in Revelation 16.”

I read him the first three plagues and he said, “What are you getting at?”

I said, “Well, God threw back in the faces of the Egyptians their false worship with the plagues. In the same way, when Jesus brings spiritual Israel out of spiritual Egypt, He throws back in their faces their false worship by the seven last plagues.” I read the 4th plague to him and he blinked a bit.

I said, “I’ve given you enough facts that you can work out why God threw back the sun in their faces in the fourth plague.” This man happened to be a member of the Lord’s Day Alliance.

I said, “As Seventh-day Adventists, we have reservations about that organization. Why is the fourth plague to be the heating of the sun? And why, under the fifth plague, will darkness fall upon the seat of the beast?”

And so we talked . . .


We have the responsibility of taking the Three Angels’ Messages to the entire world so that those who are still in Babylon can come out from the midst of her. The seven last plagues are judgments that are poured out against those who make up Babylon (see Revelation 18:4).

We need to earnestly pray that we will be among those who will give the Loud Cry Message that will prepare a people to stand before a holy God without a Mediator.

The End

Editorial – Have You Lost Sight of Jesus, part 2

Losing sight of Jesus is always dangerous. This is what caused the great apostasy in the early church. It will cause not only apostasy but unimaginable problems for us today. This is the progression of events that happened in the early church as recorded by Ellen White in The Acts of the Apostles:

1. The change from apostolic Christianity was gradual—many did not perceive that anything was happening.

2. The believers began to look for defects in others.

3. They discovered defects in others and began to dwell on these mistakes. (Notice they were not keeping their eyes fixed on Jesus. They had lost sight of the Savior and His love.)

4. They became more strict in regard to the forms of outward ceremonies. This was a first consequence of losing sight of Jesus.

5. They became more particular about the theory of the Christian faith. We hope to have more to say about this later. It became very important that everybody agree on theology and when they did not gigantic controversies erupted. Notice that this was one of the results of losing sight of Jesus.

6. They became less particular about the practice of the faith! In other words whether your theology was correct or not became of paramount importance but whether or not you lived out what you professed was not so important. When the vision is focused on Jesus your faith is part of your life and not just an intellectual assent to doctrine.

7. Since they were dwelling upon the mistakes of others they manifested great zeal to point out these mistakes of their fellow Christians. The root cause was that their vision was not on Jesus.

8. At the same time they came to overlook their own errors! (When we are constantly looking to Jesus, our own stark defects of character stand out in bold relief in comparison to the One we are concentrating on. (See Steps to Christ, 63–65.)

9. They lost the brotherly love which the early Christian church had. When we lose sight of Jesus and are studying each other’s character defects brotherly love disappears.

10. Worst of all they were unconscious of their loss! They had lost sight of Jesus and were about to go into the stygian darkness of the greatest apostasy in world history to that point and did not know it! (See The Acts of the Apostles, 548.)

Happiness and joy were going out of their lives, the love of God was shut out of their hearts (without the love of God in your heart you are lost no matter how much theology you know—Luke 10:25-28; I John 4:7, 8; John 17:2, 3) and they did not know the terrible dilemma they were in. Is there any chance that this could happen to God’s last-day remnant people? Is there any chance that we could go down a road that ends in utter darkness and gloom and not know where we are going being oblivious to our real condition? What is the solution?

“It would be well for us to spend a thoughtful hour each day in contemplation of the life of Christ. We should take it point by point, and let the imagination grasp each scene, especially the closing ones. As we thus dwell upon His great sacrifice for us, our confidence in Him will be more constant, our love will be quickened, and we shall be more deeply imbued with His spirit. If we would be saved at last, we must learn the lesson of penitence and humiliation at the foot of the cross.” Desire of Ages, 83.

The people of God who go through to glory will be the ones whose eyes are fixed on Jesus:

“In the time of the end the people of God will sigh and cry for the abominations done in the land. With tears they will warn the wicked of their danger in trampling upon the divine law, and with unutterable sorrow they will humble themselves before the Lord in penitence . . . But the anguish and humiliation of God’s people is unmistakable evidence that they are regaining the strength and nobility of character lost in consequence of sin. It is because they are drawing nearer to Christ, because their eyes are fixed on His perfect purity, that they discern so clearly the exceeding sinfulness of sin. Meekness and lowliness are the conditions of success and victory. A crown of glory awaits those who bow at the foot of the cross. Prophets and Kings, 590.

The End