The “Star” of the New Evangelization of America

To begin, I would like to share a statement from the pen of inspiration that is most sobering and pertinent to the times in which we live: “Those who oppose the teachings of spiritualism are assailing, not men alone, but Satan and his angels. They have entered upon a contest against principalities and powers and wicked spirits in high places. Satan will not yield one inch of ground except he is driven back by the power of heavenly messengers. The people of God should be able to meet him, as did our Savior, with the words: ‘It is written.’ Satan can quote Scripture now as in the days of Christ, and he will pervert its teachings to sustain his delusions. Those who would stand in this time of peril must understand for themselves the testimony of the Scriptures.” The Great Controversy, 559. [All emphasis throughout the article is supplied.]

“Satan has long been preparing for his final effort to deceive the world. The foundation of his work was laid by the assurance given to Eve in Eden: ‘Ye shall not surely die.’ ‘In the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.’ Genesis 3:4, 5. Little by little he has prepared the way for his masterpiece of deception in the development of spiritualism. He has not yet reached the full accomplishment of his designs; but it will be reached in the last remnant of time. Says the prophet: ‘I saw three unclean spirits like frogs…they are the spirits of devils, working miracles, which go forth unto the kings of the earth and of the whole world, to gather them to the battle of that great day of God almighty.’ Revelation 16:13, 14. Except those who are kept by the power of God, through faith in His word, the whole world will be swept into the ranks of this delusion. The people are fast being lulled to a fatal security, to be awakened only by the outpouring of the wrath of God.” Ibid., 561, 562.

The Two Great Errors

There are two doctrinal errors that nearly all Christendom has swallowed as part of the “wine of Babylon.” The first is the false teaching that Sunday, the first day of the week, is the Lord’s day; and the second, which is more deadly, is the hellish doctrine of the natural immortality of the soul and man’s consciousness in death.

Friends, do you realize that two of the pope’s last Apostolic letters deal with these two doctrinal errors? On July 7, 1998, the Vatican released the pope’s 104-page Apostolic letter entitled Dies Domini—On Keeping the Lord’s Day Holy. Point 67 of Dies Domini actually states: “Christians will naturally strive to ensure that civil legislation respects their duty to keep Sunday holy….Sunday must be sanctified.” On the same day, The Denver Post quoted Rome as saying; “A violator should be punished as a heretic.” Has not prophecy warned us that “When the leading churches of the United States, uniting upon such points of doctrine as are held by them in common, shall influence the state [“civil legislation”] to enforce their decrees and to sustain their institutions, then Protestant America will have formed an image to the Roman hierarchy, and the infliction of civil penalties upon dissenters [heretics] will inevitably result.” The Great Controversy, 445.

Many Seventh-day Adventists are familiar with Dies Domini, but not many are aware of the pope’s Apostolic Exhortation that he gave to the Synod of Bishops, in Mexico City, prior to his historic visit to St. Louis, in January of 1999. It is called Ecclesia [Church] in America of the Holy Father John Paul II: The Way to Conversion, Communion and Solidarity in America. At the council of Bishops in Mexico, the theme of the event was to discuss new strategies for evangelism that the church in America must attain in the third Christian millennium (which begins with the year 2000). And will the Virgin Mary be a major player in the new evangelistic efforts of the Roman Catholic Church?

The Star of the New Evangelization

While in Mexico, the pope dedicated the Americas to the Virgin Mary. From the Exhortation, we read: “With the passage of time, pastors and faithful alike have grown increasingly conscious of the role of the Virgin Mary in the evangelization of America. In the prayer of the Special Assembly for America of the Synod of Bishops, Holy Mary of Guadalupe is invoked as ‘Patroness of all America and Star of the first and new evangelization. In view of this, I welcome with joy the proposal of the Synod Fathers that the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe, Mother and Evangelizer of America, be celebrated throughout the continent on December 12. It is my heartfelt hope that she…will by her maternal intercession guide the Church in America, obtaining the outpouring of the Holy Spirit, as she once did for the early church (cf. Acts 1:14), so that the new evangelization may yield a splendid flowering of Christian life.”

Consequently, not only in Central and South America, but in North America as well, the Virgin of Guadalupe is venerated as Queen of all America. Furthermore, the shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe near Mexico City draws 20 million visitors a year. It is regarded as the most sacred shrine outside of Europe. Mary, that is the spirit apparition of Mary, is the “Star” of the Roman Catholic Church’s new evangelization of the Americas.

Before I precede any further, I want you to know that the Catholic Church acknowledges the pagan origin of many of the shrines and statues of Mary. A Catholic publication stated the following: “Devotion to Mary began in the earliest years of Christianity, and she is revered in Christian literature as early as A.D. 150…Throughout the history of the world, sites associated with any one religion have often been re-used by its successor. To do so reinforces the new religion, but may also result in characteristics of deities of different faiths becoming intermingled. Statues of the Virgin…used to be paraded around the fields to ensure a good harvest. The moon and stars, symbols of Diana, Greco-Roman goddess of hunting were later associated with the Virgin, and Mary is frequently referred to as Stella Maria—Star of the Sea. Festivals, too, were assimilated [from paganism] into the new faith: the Festival of the Purification of the Blessed Virgin on 2 February was originally a Roman Festival of purification. And Christians often took over the pagan shrines of the ancient world’s goddesses and rededicated them to Mary. A good example is the shrine to Diana at Ephesus, which was re-established in the fourth century as a shrine to the Virgin.” Shrines of Our Lady, 6, 7.

Amazing! Rome blinds the eyes of ignorant souls worldwide, and once loyalty to their pagan statues is gained, they empty the pockets of their victims. In Acts 19:24, 25, we read: “For a certain man named Demetrius, a silversmith, which made silver shrines for Diana, brought no small gain unto the craftsmen; Whom he called together with the workmen of like occupation, and said, Sirs, ye know that by this craft we have our wealth.”

The Love of the Truth or Strong Delusion

Beloved, as a former Roman Catholic and Mary devotee, I am amazed and saddened by the lethargy of Seventh-day Adventists, who have been entrusted with the Three Angels’ Messages, and their silence on this issue! Who is sounding the trumpet? Who is warning our people that spiritualism will soon break upon us with a magnitude that may deceive the very elect! The Bible warns us that the day is near when “miracles” and “lying wonders” will deceive those that “love not the truth.” I believe the warning in 2 Thessalonians 2:10–12 is written for every professed Christian who has either not heeded or even has rejected the light sent from heaven, regardless of his church affiliation, and especially for Seventh-day Adventists.

Paul writes: “And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of His mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of His coming. Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders. And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because 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 [including the devil’s first lie that “Ye shall not surely die” Genesis 3:4]: That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.” 2 Thessalonians 2:8–12.

What denomination has been given the truth? And please notice, not only do many of the professed Christians whom Paul refers to “love not the truth,” but also they do not love it because they have “pleasure in unrighteousness.” Certainly, the majority of professed Seventh-day Adventists today are enjoying the pleasures of the world, and this is most evident by the celebration worship services they have adopted from Rome—a product of Vatican II!

And what will be the “strong delusions” that will deceive, if possible the very elect? In 1 Timothy 4:1 we read: “Now the Spirit speaketh expressly that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils.”

The Alpha and the Omega

Nearly 100 years ago, Ellen White gave the following warning: “Be not deceived; many will depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits and doctrines of devils. We have now before us the alpha of this danger. The omega will be of a most startling nature.…I knew that the omega would follow in a little while; and I trembled for our people.” Special Testimonies, Series B, No. 2, 16, 53. At the time she wrote this statement, Dr. John Harvey Kellogg, in his book The Living Temple, was promulgating the doctrine of [New Age] pantheism—that God is in everything in the material world—“the flower, the tree, the atmosphere, and even the sinner, and in each one of us, as virtually ‘doing away with God,’ and therefore seriously undercutting the sanctuary truth.” Manuscript Releases, 760, 1. This leaves you with an impersonal god, not one who is ministering in your behalf in the heavenly sanctuary, but one that is diffused through nature. Such teachings will lead to the worship of the creature, or to creation, rather than to the Creator. After all, is it not Satan’s ultimate goal to rob God of the homage due only Him by whatever medium he himself chooses!

Dear reader, let it be understood that pantheism, the alpha of apostasy, is a form of spiritualism! In fact, the prophet linked pantheism and spiritualism together on a number of occasions. On one occasion she wrote: “Let the world go into spiritualism, theosophy [mysticism], and pantheism, if they choose. We are to have nothing to do with this deceptive branch of Satan’s work.” Battle Creek Letters, 109. Webster’s College Dictionary gives several definitions for the word spiritualism, one of which is: “The belief that all reality is spiritual [pantheism].” Ellen White labeled Kellogg’s teachings as “fascinating, spiritualistic science of Satanic origin.” And she goes on to say: “That these beautiful representations are similar to the temptation that the enemy brought to Adam and Eve in Eden.” Ibid., 103; Sermons and Talks, vol. 1, 341.

In Eden, Satan spoke through the medium of a serpent. Pantheism teaches that God is in everything, even animals. Have not even animated, talking animals, such as Disney characters, been used as a form of spiritualism to prepare millions of innocent children to drink of the devil’s future master delusions? In fact, I just learned that a Hollywood movie, called The Sixth Sense, has been the number-one moneymaker for seven weeks in a row! It is about a young boy who is communicating with the dead. Spiritualism, just like pantheism, is a spiritualistic science of Satanic origin! In the last days, in his grand efforts to deceive, Satan will again speak through mediums, but this time expanding “familiar spirits” to include, not only human-like agencies, but also well-known deceased Christians. The world, with the help of Hollywood, is quickly being primed to accept the demon Mary and other imposters that shall appear.

I believe Ellen White saw that spiritualism and its influence upon God’s people would not cease, but, to the contrary, would culminate in the omega of apostasy: “I am instructed to speak plainly. ‘Meet it,’ is the word spoken to me. ‘Meet it firmly, and without delay’.…In the book Living Temple, there is presented the alpha of deadly heresies. The omega will follow, and will be received by those who are not willing to heed the warning God has given.” Selected Messages, Book 1, 200. No wonder she “trembled” for our people, for Satan is determined to sweep “all into the ranks of spiritualism”!!! The Great Controversy, 588.

Spiritualism Will Imitate Nominal Christianity

Revelation 13 warns us that the United States will experience “great wonders…on the earth in the sight of men. And which will deceive them that “dwell on the earth, by the means of those miracles, which he had power to do in the sight of the beast.” Revelation 13: 13, 14. “The time is coming when Satan will work miracles right in your sight, claiming that he is Christ; and if your feet are not firmly established upon the truth of God, then you will be led away from your foundation. The only safety for you is to search for truth as for hid treasures. Dig for the truth as you would for treasures in the earth, and present the word of God, the Bible, before your heavenly Father and say, ‘Enlighten me, teach me what is truth’.…You should store the mind with the Word of God; for you may be separated, and placed where you will not have the privilege of meeting with the children of God. ” Review and Herald, April 3, 1888.

Picture the day when supernatural events, such as Mother Teresa, the Virgin Mary, or the Apostles of Christ walking on this earth, strengthen the efforts of the religious teachers who are urging Americans to obey the altered ten commandments, which include the worship of the Sunday sabbath. “As Spiritualism assimilates more closely to the nominal Christianity of the day, it has greater power to deceive and ensnare. Satan himself is converted, after the modern order of things…Through the agency of Spiritualism, miracles will be wrought, the sick will be healed, and many undeniable wonders will be performed. And as the spirits will profess faith in the Bible, and express regard for Sunday, their work will be accepted as a manifestation of divine power.” Spirit of Prophecy, vol. 4, 406. This will be a time when violators will be threatened with civil fines and imprisonment if they refuse to obey the laws of the land and the words of Satan’s “familiar spirits.” What will you do then, beloved? In the exhortation given at the Synod of Bishops in Mexico City, Pope John Paul II saved his best for the last. In Article 73, entitled The Challenge of the Sects, he states: “The proselytizing activity of the sects [historic SDAs?] and new religious groups in America is a grave hindrance to the work of evangelization….The success of proselytism by sects and new religious groups in America cannot be ignored.” Indeed, the end is upon us!

Celebration 2000—The Grand Jubilee

In case you are not aware, Rome is planning a great celebration or jubilee to welcome in the third millennium—the year 2000, a Marian year—and the holy doors will be opened Christmas, December 25, 1999—the starting date of the Grand Jubilee celebration. The Vatican plans a series of masses and other celebrations to mark Christianity’s third millennium, and 20 million people are expected to flock to Rome. John Paul II has declared 2000 a jubilee year—a time of pilgrimage and celebration.

Pope John Paul II, in his new book, Celebration 2000, tells us who in the spiritual realm is in charge of leading the church to Christ in the year 2000. He states: “I entrust this responsibility of the whole church to the maternal intercession of Mary, the Mother of the Redeemer: She, the Mother of fairest love, will be for the Christians on the way to the Great Jubilee of the third millennium the star which safely guides their steps to the Lord.” Celebration 2000, 268.

Malachi Martin, author of The Keys of This Blood, said that the pope is anxiously awaiting a potent worldwide Marian Vision—“an event that will fission human history….It will be an event on public view in the skies, in the oceans, and on the continental landmasses of this planet. It will particularly involve our human sun….But on the day of this event, it will not appear as the master star of our so-called solar system. Rather, it will be seen as the circumambient glory of the Woman whom the apostle describes as ‘clothed with the sun’ and giving birth to ‘a child who will rule the nations with a scepter of iron.’” The Keys of This Blood, 639.

If you doubt this could happen, research what occurred in Fatima, Portugal, on October 13, 1917. The “Miracle of the Sun” took place. “The sun seemed to flicker on and off, first one way and then another. It shot rays in different directions and painted everything in different colors, the trees, the people, the air and the ground. The sun did not hurt the eyes. Everything was still and quiet, everyone looking upwards. At a certain moment, the sun seemed to stop and then begin to move and to dance until it seemed that it was being detached from the sky and was falling on the people. Thousands of the people present saw this phenomenon and the newspapers wrote about it.” Our Lady of Fatima Web Site.

Interestingly, Malachi Martin, ex-Jesuit, died July 27, 1999, and reports are varied on the cause of his death. The Sunday Visitor, August 22, 1999, featured an article by Greg Erlandson, Editor in Chief, in which he labeled Malachi Martin as “half brilliant, half loon, given to incredible conspiracy theories.” Perhaps, he revealed too much!

The Vision

Will the pope’s expected vision be cataclysmic and bring the normal activity of the world to a standstill? Some are praying that Mary—“the Star of the new evangelization”—will walk through the holy doors of the Vatican on Christmas 1999, the inauguration of Jubilee 2000. If the vision occurs, I believe it could be what the pope needs to exalt him as the head of the New World Order. Would world chaos and calamities precede this expected vision? Could it validate the global reign of Pope John Paul II, a Marian pope, who credits Mary with saving his life, and establish him as the spiritual judge of the planet and the Roman Catholic Church as the only true church and this pope as God’s ordained leader? Compare this thought with E.G. White’s conclusion on page 588 of The Great Controversy: “Satan determines to unite them [professed Christians and the ungodly] into one body and thus strengthen his cause by sweeping all into the ranks of spiritualism. Papists, who boast of miracles as a certain sign of the true church, will be readily deceived by this wonder-working power; and Protestants, having cast away the shield of truth [and who believe in the immortality of the soul], will also be deluded…and they will see in this union a grand movement for the conversion of the world and the ushering in of the long-expected millennium.” The Great Controversy, 588, 589. It has been said that those who are involved in the New Age movement will also accept a worldwide Marian (goddess) vision preceding the appearance of the false Christ—the lord Maitreya.

The New Age, Mother Earth, and the Goddess

In his most blasphemous book, The Armageddon Script, The Power of Prophecy and the Secret Life of Jesus, New Ager Peter Lemesurier writes enthusiastically about the worship of the “Great Mother Earth.” He writes as if he is an astronaut in a spaceship in orbit around the earth. “As they rounded the barren lunar globe for the…last time, and the resplendent half-earth once again rose behind that now familiar curved and rocky horizon, what they saw coming up to meet them was strangely familiar….A god out of the world of the archetypes. It was none other than the rounded form of the Great Mother, earth herself, clad in the same flowering robes of shining blue and white that had been those of mother-goddess of earth and sky throughout history—and not least his most recent mother-goddess, the Virgin Mary herself.” The Armageddon Script, 245, 246.

Peter Lemesurier, as a pagan worshipper, has no difficulty recognizing the truth that the worship of the Virgin Mary is ancient pagan idolatry. Therefore, non-Christian Pagans the world over will have little difficulty accepting the worship of “the Virgin Mary,” which is actually an evil spirit impersonating Mary. (See 2 Corinthians 11:13–15.)

Spiritualism and the Unification of Churches

The prophet has warned us that spiritualism is the means by which Satan will “unite the churches,” and Rome will use spiritualism to “validate” that she is the true church! I believe the demon Mary will play a critical role in the accomplishment of this goal, and not only Protestants, but also New Agers, will fall for it, because they all believe Rome’s false doctrine of the devil’s first lie—the immortality of the soul. Remember, “The whole world will be swept into the ranks of this delusion.” The Great Controversy, 562.

The world is ready and ripe for this almost overpowering deception. In fact, the December, 1996, issue of Life magazine featured, on its front cover, a picture of a statue of Mary and the caption: “Two thousand years after the Nativity, the mother of Jesus is more beloved, powerful, and controversial than ever. The Mystery of Mary.” The ending of this article was especially of interest to me. It stated: “Mary…might lead to an ecumenical reunion of Christian churches [see The Great Controversy, 445.] It might lead to a closer understanding of the teenage girl who gave birth in Bethlehem 2,000 years ago….Can we ask this simple girl to guide what has become not a cult but a huge and passionate congregation, a movement requiring a hero, a world-wide flock that has long demanded more of her? That has demanded, in some instances, that she deliver her message herself? I wonder: If Mary became merely human—if people could truly touch Mary—would Mary be enough?” After all, Rome makes the assertion that not only is the pope the Spiritual father of all Christians, but Mary is their mother! A quote from A Catechism of Christian Doctrine, 27, states: “The Blessed Virgin is our Mother also because, being the brethren of Jesus, we are the children of Mary.”

Will She Deceive the Very Elect?

And will SDAs also be overcome by this wonder-working demon? Please, study the prophecies of Ezekiel 8 and 9. Ellen White alludes to Ezekiel 9 in Volume 5 of the Testimonies in the chapter called The Seal of God, 207–216. Here she likens the destruction of apostate SDAs to the destruction by the slaughtering angels of Ezekiel 9, which begins in the sanctuary, or the church. “Here we see that the church—the Lord’s sanctuary—was the first to feel the stroke of the wrath of God. The ancient men, those to whom God had given great light and who had stood as guardians of the spiritual interest of the people, had betrayed their trust….Thus, ‘Peace and safety’ is the cry from men who will never again lift up their voice like a trumpet to show God’s people their transgressions and the house of Jacob their sins. These dumb dogs that would not bark are the ones who feel the just vengeance of an offended God. Men, maidens, and little children all perish together.” Testimonies, vol. 5, 211. And for what reason will the Lord destroy the people called by His name? Because the “abominations” in Ezekiel 8 are being practiced in the Lord’s house—His church—one of which is the worship of the “image of jealousy.” “The faithful few… lament and afflict their souls because pride, avarice, selfishness, and deception of almost every kind are in the church.” Testimonies, vol. 5, 210.

Historian Alexander Hislop tells us in his book, The Two Babylons, that the “image of jealousy” is that of the Babylonian Madonna, the “queen of heaven.” Therefore, what provokes the wrath of God today is that “the child she [Modern Babylon] holds forth to adoration is called by the name of Jesus, His son.” (The Two Babylons, 88). With “Satan himself” being “converted after the modern order of things (see The Great Controversy, 588),” the image would be that of “Babylon, The Great” [Roman Catholicism’s] Madonna, or the Virgin Mary and baby Jesus [who really would be Tammuz (see Ezekiel 8:14)], set up in the church that claims to worship the true God. The Lord commanded: “Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath….Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the Lord thy God am a jealous God.” Exodus 20:4, 5. Is it any wonder why the Catholic Church removed the second commandment from the moral law?

Furthermore, Jeremiah records that God’s people obeyed not “the voice of the Lord, nor walked in His law, nor in His statutes, nor in His testimonies,” for they were burning “incense to the queen of heaven.” Jeremiah 44:23, 25. Is this another example of “the sure word of prophecy?” 2 Peter 1:19. Ellen White was shown in vision many years ago that “Modern Israel are in greater danger of forgetting God and being led into idolatry than were His ancient people.” Testimonies, vol. 1, 609.

“It is to be remembered that the greater the light bestowed, the greater the delusion and darkness of those who reject the word of God and accept fables.” Signs of the Times, November 8, 1899. After all, was it not the leaders of the Jewish nation that had Christ murdered with the aid of the Roman power! Will history be repeated? “However high any minister may have stood in the favor of God, if he neglects to follow out the light given him of God, if he refuses to be taught as a little child, he will go into darkness and satanic delusions and will lead others in the same path.” Testimonies, vol. 5, 214.

The “Star” of the New Evangelization of America, Part II

In part one, we saw how the world is ready for Satan’s final great delusion—spiritualism. In part two we will learn how important it is for Adventists today to be prepared for these overmastering deceptions.

Will She Deceive the Very Elect?

And will Seventh-day Adventists also be overcome by this wonder-working demon? Please study the prophecies of Ezekiel 8 and 9. Ellen White alludes to Ezekiel 9 in Volume 5 of the Testimonies in the chapter called The Seal of God, 207–216. Here she likens the destruction of apostate Seventh-day Adventists to the destruction by the slaughtering angels of Ezekiel 9, which begins in the sanctuary, or the church. “Here we see that the church—the Lord’s sanctuary—was the first to feel the stroke of the wrath of God. The ancient men, those to whom God had given great light and who had stood as guardians of the spiritual interest of the people, had betrayed their trust….Thus, ‘Peace and safety’ is the cry from men who will never again lift up their voice like a trumpet to show God’s people their transgressions and the house of Jacob their sins. These dumb dogs that would not bark are the ones who feel the just vengeance of an offended God. Men, maidens, and little children all perish together.” Testimonies, vol. 5, 211. And for what reason will the Lord destroy the people called by His name? Because the “abominations” in Ezekiel 8 are being practiced in the Lord’s house—His church—one of which is the worship of the “image of jealousy.” “The faithful few… lament and afflict their souls because pride, avarice, selfishness, and deception of almost every kind are in the church.” Testimonies, vol. 5, 210.

Historian Alexander Hislop tells us in his book, The Two Babylons, that the “image of jealousy” is that of the Babylonian Madonna, the “queen of heaven.” Therefore, what provokes the wrath of God today is that “the child she [modern Babylon] holds forth to adoration is called by the name of Jesus, His son.” The Two Babylons, 88. Modern Babylon’s image is the Virgin Mary (Madonna) and baby Jesus, and it is set up in the church and the faithful are called to worship it as the true God. The Lord commanded: “Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath.…Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the Lord thy God am a jealous God.” Exodus 20:4, 5. Is it any wonder that the Catholic Church remov ed the second commandment from the moral law?

Jeremiah recorded that God’s people obeyed not “the voice of the Lord, nor walked in His law, nor in His statutes, nor in His testimonies,” for they were burning “incense to the queen of heaven.” Jeremiah 44:23, 25. Is this another example of “the sure word of prophecy?” (2 Peter 1:19.) Ellen White was shown in vision many years ago that “Modern Israel are in greater danger of forgetting God and being led into idolatry than were His ancient people.” Testimonies, vol. 1, 609.

“It is to be remembered that the greater the light bestowed, the greater the delusion and darkness of those who reject the word of God and accept fables.” Signs of the Times, November 8, 1899. After all, was it not the leaders of the Jewish nation that had Christ murdered with the aid of the Roman power? Will history be repeated? “However high any minister may have stood in the favor of God, if he neglects to follow out the light given him of God, if he refuses to be taught as a little child, he will go into darkness and satanic delusions and will lead others in the same path.” Testimonies, vol. 5, 214.

The Betrayal

One may ask, “Will Seventh-day Adventists really accept spiritualism and the false Mary?” To this I ask, “Will the majority of Seventh-day Adventists worship on Sunday when it is enforced by law?” Here are some very sobering comments from inspiration bearing on this matter: “‘And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold’…Soon God’s people will be tested by fiery trials, and the great proportion of those who now appear as genuine and true will prove to be base metal….They will cowardly take the side of the opposers. The promise is: ‘They that honor Me I will honor’…To stand in defense of truth and righteousness when the majority forsake us, to fight the battles of the Lord when champions are few—this will be our test.” Testimonies, vol.5, 136. “I was shown the startling fact that but a small portion who now profess the truth will be sanctified by it and be saved.” Testimonies, vol.1, 608.

The Spirit of Prophecy has also told us that ministers in the “open air will urge upon the people the necessity of keeping the first day of the week.” Review and Herald, March 18, 1884. (If you read the context of this statement, you will discover that she is referring to Seventh-day Adventist ministers.) She has also given this warning: “As the storm approaches, a large class who have professed faith in the Third Angel’s Message, but have not been sanctified through obedience to the truth abandon their position and join the ranks of the opposition. By uniting with the world and partaking of its spirit they have come to view matters in nearly the same light; and when the test is brought, they are prepared to choose the easy, popular side. Men of talent and pleasing address, who once rejoiced in the truth, employ their powers to deceive and mislead souls. They become the most bitter enemies of their former brethren. When Sabbath-keepers are brought before the courts to answer for their faith, these apostates are the most efficient agents of Satan to misrepresent and accuse them, and by false reports and insinuations to stir up the rulers against them.” The Great Controversy, 608.

Does this mean that apostate Seventh-day Adventists will turn in faithful Adventists to the Catholics? Ellen White was shown in vision that “the nominal church and nominal Adventists, like Judas, would betray us to the Catholics to obtain their influence to come against the truth. The saints will be an obscure people, little known to the Catholics; but the churches and nominal Adventists who know of our faith and customs…will betray the saints and report them to the Catholics as those who disregard the institutions of the people; that is, that they keep the Sabbath and disregard Sunday.” Spalding and Magan Collection, 1.

If professed Seventh-day Adventists will accept one of the two great errors, namely, Sunday-keeping, why won’t they accept the other—the immortality of the soul. After all, the easy, popular side will already be worshipping the “demon Mary.” In fact, goddess worship today ties together approximately 75% of the world’s population:

  • Roman Catholicism, 974 million
  • Eastern Orthodox, 164 million
  • Buddhism/various sects, 1 billion 100 million
  • Hinduism, 690 million
  • Japanese Religions, 230 million
  • Tribal Religions, 100 million (approx.)
  • Mohammedism, 924 million
  • Protestants, 351 million

(Information taken from Almanac 1991)

A Terrifying Dream

Ellen White, the messenger of the Lord, once had a terrifying dream that she could not understand at the time. It occurred while on a journey with her husband to Battle Creek. “I dreamed that I was in Battle Creek looking out from the side glass at the door and saw a company marching up to the house, two and two. They looked stern and determined. I knew them well and turned to open the parlor door to receive them, but thought I would look again. The scene had changed. The company now presented the appearance of a Catholic procession. One bore in his hand a cross, and another a reed. And as they approached, the one carrying the reed made a circle around the house, saying three times: ‘This house is proscribed. [“In ancient Rome, to announce the name of a person as condemned to death and subject to confiscation of property.” Webster’s College Dictionary.] The goods must be confiscated. They have spoken against our holy order.’ Terror seized me, and I ran through the house, through the north door, and found myself in the midst of the company, some of whom I knew, but I dared not speak a word to them for fear of being betrayed. I tried to seek a retired spot where I might weep and pray without meeting eager, inquisitive eyes wherever I turned. I repeated frequently: ‘If I could only understand this! If they will tell me what I have said or what I have done!’” Testimonies, vol. 1, 578. Had she seen the omega!

The Betrayal Has Already Begun

Dear friends, has the betrayal already begun in light of the recent official compromises and associations between Seventh-day Adventists and Catholics? Such as the Week of Prayer at Pacific Union College that was led by an ex-priest, who had the students recite several times after him: “We are Easter men and Easter women, Alleluia, that’s our name.” I heard the cassette recordings with my own ears. Another example is PorterCare of Adventist Health Systems, which has lost its investment grade rating due to its involvement with financially struggling Centura Health—Colorado’s largest hospital system. Centura is a jointly managed company, formed in 1995 between PorterCare and the Sisters of Charity Health Services, now part of Catholic Health Initiatives. And what about Willow Creek Church, an inter-denominational, Pentecostal-style church near Chicago that focuses on church growth and celebration-style worship—an ecumenical ploy of Vatican II? Since at least 56 SDA churches have joined the Willow Creek Association, I wonder if we will soon see charismatic SDA churches as a result? Unsurprisingly, an SDA pastor just informed me that Adventists in Southern California are speaking in false tongues—another spiritualistic manifestation that will be used by Satan to unify the churches of all denominations!

And what about the tragedy at College View Church in Lincoln, Nebraska, where the Cardinal and Archbishop of Baltimore preached on baptism and sprinkled the heads of those present as a symbol of baptism!! And why, during communion, are some SDA ministers calling their congregations forward—a standard procedure of the Catholic mass—to receive the “Holy Eucharist”—a Roman Catholic term applied to the wafer, which according to Catholic doctrine, becomes the “literal body of Jesus Christ”? In the meantime, the General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists has filed a trademark lawsuit against a brother who is placing ads in major newspapers, warning the world of Dies Domini and the coming Sunday Law—the mark of the beast—the mark of Rome! And, sad to say, they may be using tithe money to pay their legal fees. Undoubtedly, Rome has infiltrated the headquarters of the corporate church; and when the headquarters is infected, it affects the whole body of believers. “Satan’s chief work is at the headquarters of our faith. He spares no pains to corrupt men in responsible positions and to persuade them to be unfaithful to their several trusts.” Testimonies, vol. 4, 210.

The prophet has warned us that Satan’s threefold union will be formed when Protestantism and spiritualism “reach over the abyss to clasp hands with the Roman power” and trample “on the rights of conscience.” The Great Controversy, 588. You can, then, understand the shock I felt when I read the following in Sunday—a quarterly magazine published by The Lord’s Day Alliance of the United States. In a special tribute to Dr. James Wesberry, Executive Director-Editor and Administrative Assistant, for his loyal service from 1975 – 1992, it was noted: “He also made history for the alliance when he spoke at Andrews University and Theological Seminary in Berrien Springs, Michigan, and led in exploration of ways The Lord’s Day Alliance and Seventh-day Adventists could work together. ‘In spite of differences of opinion in reference to the Sabbath question,’ Wesberry explained, ‘we had clasped hands across these differences and denominational lines and felt the warm, sincere grip and gracious friendship among brothers and sisters in Christ.’” Sunday, Vol. LXXIX, no. 3, 11. Why did the SDA Theological Seminary join hands with one of the most ardent promoters of the Sunday-Sabbath? Is the answer betrayal?

I would like to conclude my summary of events in this growing apostasy in Adventism with the most recent stab to my already aching heart. On January 26 and 27, 1999, Modern Manna went to St. Louis for the papal visit with 100,000 copies of Is the Virgin Mary Dead or Alive? At the same time, The Eternal Gospel Church of Seventh-day Adventists had also run The Earth’s Final Warning in the St. Louis Post Dispatch. Were we justified in feeling betrayed when we learned that Seventh-day Adventist men, in responsible positions, were already apologizing to the beast of Bible prophecy, “Pope John Paul II and the Catholic Church, for discrimination, hatred and persecution inspired by offshoot groups” in St. Louis. Adventist Today, January, 1999. E. G. White hit the nail on the head when she prophesied: “Instead of standing in defense of the faith once delivered to the saints, they are now, as it were, apologizing to Rome for their uncharitable opinion of her, begging pardon for their bigotry.” The Great Controversy, 572. The Seventh-day Adventist Church World Headquarters raised the white flag to Rome! (See Adventist News Network News Release: 27 January 1999).

But this is not the end of the story, friends, for I am sad to say there is more. During the ecumenical service held on January 27 at the Basilica of St. Louis, B.T. Rice, pastor of the Northside Seventh-day Adventist Church and president of the St. Louis Clergy Coalition, presented a document to the “man of sin” welcoming him to the community and acknowledging “his tireless example on behalf of interfaith understanding and community relations.” He also presented him with “a hand-made banner, bearing the logo Faith Beyond Walls.” (St. Louis Post Dispatch, Jan. 27, 1999, in the article entitled “Many faiths join to work for a better community.”)

How symbolic! The wall of separation between Catholicism and Seventh-day Adventism is certainly breaking apart. This is a clear example of pure ecumenicalism—a movement promoting cooperation and unity among religious groups—of which the Demon Mary will be the “Star!” Friends, certainly this is a time to be “sighing and crying for the abominations that are done in…the church!” Testimonies, vol. 5, 209, 210. I am trembling for our people, for they have drunk deeply from Rome’s intoxicating cup, and the omega is just around the corner!

The Very Last Deception

Did not E. G. White foresee, in the terrifying dream referred to earlier in this article, a future time when Seventh-day Adventists will betray their own people—including their prophet. Could this dream have its fulfillment when Seventh-day Adventists betray not only their brethren, but also the truths entrusted to them by God—by rejecting or “betraying” the Spirit of Prophecy, or Testimonies, written by the prophet herself? Remember, “In rejecting the truth, men reject its author.” The Great Controversy, 583. “Satan is…constantly pressing in the spurious—to lead away from the truth. The very last deception of Satan will be to make of none effect the testimony of the Spirit of God. ‘Where there is no vision, the people perish.’ Proverbs 29:18. Satan will work ingeniously, in different ways and through different agencies, to unsettle the confidence of God’s remnant people in the true testimony.

“There will be a hatred kindled against the testimonies which is satanic. The workings of Satan will be to unsettle the faith of the churches in them, for this reason: Satan cannot have so clear a track to bring in his deceptions and bind up souls in his delusions if the warnings and reproofs and counsels of the Spirit of God are heeded.” Selected Messages, Book 1, 48. This is my reason for writing these articles! Will we forget the lessons of the past? During the alpha of apostasy, the Spirit of Prophecy also came under attack.

Please remember, beloved, the Spirit of Prophecy is one of the two identifying marks of the remnant church of Bible prophecy. (See Revelation 12:17.) It is a gift from God! Why, then, must we continue to rebel against God’s Word when He has so clearly warned us of the following: “One thing it is certain is soon to be realized,—the great apostasy, which is developing and increasing and waxing stronger, will continue to do so until the Lord shall descend from heaven with a shout. We are to hold fast the first principles of our denominated faith!” Special Testimonies, Series B, No. 7, 57.

Ellen White’s Most Solemn Warning

Ellen White, perhaps, issued her most solemn warning to Seventh-day Adventists when she penned what would happen if they disseminated the seductive, spiritualistic theories of the alpha of apostasy:

“I was shown a platform braced by solid timbers,—the truths of the Word of God. Someone high in responsibility in the medical work was directing this man and that man to loosen the timbers supporting the platform. I heard a voice saying, ‘Where are the watchmen that ought to be standing on the walls of Zion? Are they asleep? This foundation was built by the Master Worker, and will stand storm and tempest. Will they permit this man to present doctrines that deny the past experience of the people of God? The time has come to take decided action.’

“The enemy of souls has sought to bring in the supposition that a great reformation was to take place among Seventh-day Adventists, and this reformation would consist in giving up the doctrines which stand as the pillars of our faith, and engaging in a process of reorganization. Were this to take place, what would result? The principles of truth that God in His wisdom has given to the remnant church would be discarded. Our religion would be changed. The fundamental principles that have sustained the work for the last fifty years would be accounted as error [the sanctuary, the nature of Christ, sanctification, the beast, etc.]. A new organization would be established [who is setting up the new organization?] Books of a new order [new theology] would be written. A system of intellectual theology would be introduced [SDA ministers are receiving their advanced education and “philosophies” from the evangelical teachers of the world]. The founders of this system would go into the cities, and do a wonderful work. The Sabbath, of course, would be lightly regarded, and also the God who created it. Nothing would be allowed to stand in the way of the new movement [lawsuits against faithful Seventh-day Adventists for preaching the Three Angels’ Messages, ordering them to drop the name, etc.]. The leaders would teach that virtue is better than vice [loving apologies to Rome and peace and safety sermons], but God being removed, they would place their dependence on human power, which, without God, is worthless. Their foundation would be built on sand, and storm and tempest would sweep away the structure.” Special Testimonies, Series B, No. 2, 54, 55. Oh, friends, the structure church is quickly heading down the primrose path! But, Praise God, not one faithful soul, not one true Israelite, will be lost!

What Will You Do?

Now, dear friends, ask yourself this question: “Are you seeing the inroads of any of the points listed above in your church?” Or, perhaps, is there just a dead silence from your ministers and church leaders? Should we be silent at this hour? How about your own heart? Even Ellen White delayed sending this letter out which the Spirit of the Lord had impelled her to write. But she realized, in the providence of God, that the errors that had been coming in must be met. She then alludes to a story about a ship, in the fog, meeting an iceberg. She was presented in the night the following scene: “A vessel was upon the waters, in a heavy fog. Suddenly the lookout cried, ‘Iceberg just ahead!’ There, towering high above the ship, was a gigantic iceberg [pantheism-spiritualism]. An authoritative voice cried out, ‘Meet it!’ There was not a moment’s hesitation. It was time for instant action.…With a crash she struck the ice…and the iceberg broke in pieces.…The passengers were violently shaken…but no lives were lost.” Ibid., 56, 57. Oh, may the church repent and return to the first principles of the denominated faith—the “old paths” spoken of by Jeremiah the prophet! (Jeremiah 6:16.) For history is seeking to repeat itself, and, in fact, soon will!

Friends, not only is the great apostasy waxing stronger, but its climax, the omega—spiritualism under a Christian guise—as exemplified by the iceberg, is right before our eyes! Just as the spiritualistic science of pantheism was the alpha of “deadly heresies,” the “startling nature” of “modern spiritualism”—pantheism’s big sister—with Satan being “converted after the modern order of things” will be the omega. The startling nature of the omega is that spiritualism will closely imitate the nominal Christianity of the day.

What will you do, beloved? Will you meet it head on, even at the risk of being ostracized or disfellowshipped from the church which you love? As in the alpha of apostasy, evil angels took captive the mind of John Harvey Kellogg. So in the omega, Satan will be “using all his science in playing the game of life for human souls. His angels are mingling with and instructing them in the mysteries of evil. These fallen angels will draw away disciples after them, will talk with men, and will set forth principles that are as false as can be, leading souls into paths of deception. These angels are to be found all over the world, presenting the wonderful things that will soon appear in a more decided light.” Manuscript Releases, 760, 17. Says spiritualism, pantheism’s big sister, “I’m back!”

Warnings from God

Most Seventh-day Adventists have read Isaiah 8:20: “To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them.” But how many of us have noticed in what context this verse was written? Isaiah 8:19 warns: “And when they shall say unto you, seek unto them that have familiar spirits, and unto wizards that peep and that mutter; should not a people seek unto their God? For the living to the dead?” The admonishment of Isaiah 8:20 is warning us of spiritualism—in conversing with our beloved dead, who are really demon imposters! Incidentally, this is why I refer to the Virgin Mary, universally beloved by Christians, as the “demon Mary.”

And what about the famous Letter 55, written in 1886, that says: “The church may appear as about to fall, but it does not fall. It remains, while the sinners in Zion will be sifted out.” What is it that threatens the elect to such a magnitude as this? The sentence that precedes the ones quoted above is rarely mentioned in conjunction with them. It reads: “Satan will work his miracles to deceive; he will set up his power as supreme.” Thus, spiritualism—the omega—will be a great test of a most startling nature for the people of God!

—To be continued…

The Star of the New Evangelization of America, Part III

Editor’s Note: In the last two parts (Part I and Part II) of this series we have looked at the role spiritualism will play in the last days, especially as it relates to Adventism. This month we will examine, in detail, the Marian phenomena and how we should relate to it.

Thousands of Supernatural Apparitions

Satan has been preparing the world for a master deception for quite some time. Mary apparitions have been reported for centuries, and, more recently, the phenomena is steadily increasing. “Spiritualism is about to take the world captive. There are many who think that Spiritualism is upheld through trickery and imposture; but this is far from the truth. Superhuman power is working in a variety of ways, and few have any idea of what will be the manifestations of Spiritualism in the future.” Signs of the Times, May 28, 1894. Is it any wonder, then, that all over the world major Mary apparitions and pilgrimages are increasing each year? “Since the first recorded supernatural appearance of Mary to a third-century pagan lawyer turned Christian named Gregory Thaumaturgus.…thousands of apparitions of the Virgin…have been claimed.…Hundreds of visions have been reported in the twentieth century alone, although only a few have ever received official ‘approval’ by the Catholic Church.” Searching for Mary, 6.

The December 30, 1991, Time magazine reported that “the late 20th century has become the age of the Marian pilgrimage” to shrines established to commemorate the many sightings of the Virgin Mary in recent years. Perhaps the two most famous shrines are at Lourdes, France, and Fatima, Portugal. But, “there are thousands of shrines of Our Lady in every country of the world.” Shrines to our Lady, 5. Shrines are usually built at locations where an apparition has appeared. Especially in the twentieth century, Mary apparitions have been reported and shrines erected in Portugal, Ireland, Rwanda, Venezuela, Italy, Yugoslavia, Korea, Mexico, Japan, and many other countries, drawing millions of visitors every year.

A major U.S. newspaper, the San Francisco Chronicle, on December 25, 1998, featured the following headline: Virgin Mary Fervor Grows As More Sightings Reported. The Chronicle cited that the three major reasons for the added Marian fervor are the approach of the millennium, the strong devotion of Pope John Paul II to Mary, and the continuing influence of events at Medjugorje, a Bosnian village where the mother of Jesus supposedly appeared in 1981. In Carthage, Missouri, 50,000 were estimated for the 21st annual observance of Marian Days. (Scope, August 12, 1998.) Then, “in Conyers, Georgia, 100,000 people gathered on a farm to hear a middle-aged housewife named Nancy Fowler channel messages from the Virgin Mary.” Ibid.

On the feast of Guadalupe, about two dozen Mexican farm workers and their families gather around a large shade tree at a Yuba City housing project. They claim to see an image of Mary in a large knothole and have candles and poinsettias at the base of the tree. The Chronicle continues: “This rising devotion to Mary cuts across lines and denominational boundaries.” (See The Great Controversy, 445.)

Blood, Tears, and Roses

In Thornton, California, 50,000 devoted pilgrims from all over the country arrive, many in motor homes, in hopes of seeing a repeat performance of the “moving statue of Mary.” Many others have reported statues of the Virgin shedding tears of blood. “In the small town of Naju, located near the southwestern tip of the Korean peninsula, Our Lady began giving urgent messages and signs to Julia Kim. On June 30, 1985, Our Lady’s statue, owned by Julia, began weeping tears, and on October 19, 1986, it began weeping tears of blood. Until January 14, 1992, the statue wept for a total of exactly 700 days. The tears of blood were tested and found to be human blood. Now the statue has been giving off odors of fragrant oil.…Julia is surrounded by the sweet fragrance of roses. Also, when she kisses a rosary or simply holds it in her hands for a few seconds, it becomes fragrant.” Our Lady of Naju Web Site. In Stockton, California, my hometown, two statues recently transported from the Philippines sporadically emitted a “palatable fragrance of sweet-scented oil.” The Record, May 5, 1999.

Outside California City, in the Mojave Desert, a Mexican-born mystic and visionary named Maria Paula, has drawn crowds numbering in the thousands since 1989. “The crowds come on the thirteenth of every month for prayer and to witness Maria Paula’s reception of an apparition and a message from the Virgin Mary. Pilgrims have reported sun miracles, visions, healings, and numerous other miraculous phenomena.” Searching for Mary, 169.

In Corpus Christi, Texas, a $12.00 statue of the Virgin “turned its head, opened its eyes, and took mincing steps.” The Star Tribune, June 6, 1998. About 50 people a minute visit the site where a subway worker’s child noticed a water stain on the floor of Mexico City’s Hidalgo Metro station, a likeness to the nation’s most powerful religious symbol—the beloved Virgin Mary of Guadalupe. (The Denver Post, June 14, 1997.)

The Great Chastisements

“Medjugorje (‘between the hills’) has become well known in Bosnia-Hercegovina, and the world, because of six young people who claim to have seen visions of the Madonna. Beginning on June 24, 1981, the Blessed Mother appeared to and later told the visionaries God had sent her to our world to help us convert our hearts and lives back to Him.” Medjugorje Web Site. Visions and apparitions at Medjugorje—sometimes called The New Fatima—are continually being reported.

In Fatima, Portugal, on July 13, 1917, the Virgin reportedly imparted three secrets to three shepherd children. The second secret included the Virgin’s desire that the pope consecrate Russia to her immaculate heart, thus securing the conversion of that nation. [Interesting how communism was defeated through the conspiracy of Pope John Paul II and President Ronald Reagan! Beware, beloved, for while in Mexico, the same pope consecrated the Americas to Mary, calling for solidarity!] “Fatima’s third secret, still unrevealed, has been kept under lock and key at the Vatican since the late 1950s and has been the subject of much speculation since its existence was first made known. It is widely supposed that the secret concerns a coming worldwide cataclysm and the approach of the end-times.” Searching for Mary, 10, 11.

Garabandal, Spain—A Masterful Deception

From 1961 through 1965, in Garabandal, Spain, four young girls experienced more than two thousand apparitions of the Virgin Mary over a four-year period. These particular visions and apparitions are a perfect example of the devil’s ability to perform masterful delusions and lying wonders—a prelude of what is to come. On July 1, 1961, a shining, winged angel spoke to the children and told them that the following day they would see the Blessed Virgin. The next day the Virgin appeared with two angels and continued to appear throughout the month. “Each time the girls went into ecstasy, during which they exhibited extraordinary physical changes: they became insensitive to pinpricks, extreme noise and bright lights, and their slight bodies could hardly be lifted from the ground by two strong men.…The Virgin would pass the infant Jesus to one of the girls to cuddle, or remove her crown and let the girls try it on.…The girls received out-of-body experiences during which they claimed they were taken on spiritual journeys through the heavens by the Virgin. Many eyewitnesses declared on oath that they had observed the girls seeming to fly over the ground at great speed when Our Lady was calling them to her.” Shrines of Our Lady, 153.

According to Conchita Gonzales, one of the four children: “On an unspecified date in the future…the Great Miracle…will take place in a grove of pines near Garabandal. Everyone who is in the area will see it; the sick who are present will be cured, sinners will repent, and Russia will be converted. The second phase of the miracle is to establish a permanent, miraculous sign in the groves of pines. The sign will be capable of being photographed and touched, its divine origin will be beyond question, and it will last until the end of time. The final leg of the prophecy, the Chastisement, is a global catastrophe held in reserve by God in the event the Warning and Miracle don’t have their intended effects.” Searching for Mary, 11, 12.

Calamities Will Increase

In Bayside, N.Y., “The Lourdes of America,” Jesus and Mary are reported to speak to the world through a seer named Veronica Lueken. Warnings of impending doom are presented of a massive world monetary depression and Russian plans of attack. Mary warns of increasing natural disasters through the elements of nature, and that these judgments from God—His chastisements—are increasing because the world has violated His moral law—the Ten Commandments.

Again, compare the words of the “demon” Mary (a demon masquerading as Mary) with the words of E. G. White: “Satan works through the elements also to garner his harvest of unprepared souls. He has studied the secrets of the laboratories of nature, and he uses all his power to control the elements as far as God allows.…While appearing to the children of men as a great physician who can heal all their maladies, he will bring disease and disaster, until populous cities are reduced to ruin and desolation. Even now he is at work. In accidents and calamities by sea and by land, in great conflagrations, in fierce tornadoes and terrific hailstorms, in tempests, floods, cyclones, tidal waves, and earthquakes, in every place and in a thousand forms, Satan is exercising his power….These visitations are to become more and more frequent and disastrous.The Great Controversy, 589, 590.

A category-five tornado in Salt Lake City, a first of its kind, causing millions of dollars in damage; the worst hurricane to hit Texas in over ten years; 72 tornadoes in one day in Kansas and in Oklahoma City; one of the ten most deadly earthquakes in history, killing forty thousand in Turkey—such calamities as these are becoming “more frequent and disastrous.”

So in the future, as these calamities increase and Sunday worship is urged upon us, we can expect nominal SDA ministers [whose testimonies will be seconded by the demon spirits (see The Great Controversy, 590, 591)] in “responsible positions taking a course directly opposite to that pursued by Nehemiah.…In churches and in large gatherings in the open air, ministers will urge upon the people the necessity of keeping the first day of the week. There are calamities on sea and land: and these calamities will increase, one disaster following close upon another; and the little band of conscientious Sabbath-keepers will be pointed out as the ones who are bringing the wrath of God upon the world by their disregard of Sunday.” And it will also be asserted “that this sin has brought calamities that will not cease until Sunday observance shall be strictly enforced; and that those who present the claims of the fourth commandment, thus destroying reverence for Sunday, are troublers of the people, preventing their restoration to divine favor and temporal prosperity.” Review and Herald, March 18, 1884; The Great Controversy, 590. Obviously, these leaders are practitioners of the omega!

The Thunder of Justice

I remember the first time I read The Thunder of Justice, written by two Catholics who are very active in the Marian Movement, how alarmed I was by their frequent use of Adventist terms. The book, which focuses on prophetic, end-time events, appears to be the Catholic’s version of The Great Controversy. In fact, it uses the very language of Ellen G. White—the language with which SDAs are familiar. This book attempts to counterfeit the Three Angels’ Messages and to give all the glory to the Virgin Mary. Some terms used in this false Spirit of Prophecy are “the little flock,” “the remnant,” Mary’s message to “recite and keep the Ten Commandments,” and that she is “the prophetess of the last days.”

The Thunder of Justice tells us that the demon Mary prophesied that rockets will hit New York in the near future. (The Thunder of Justice, 344.) Interestingly, Ellen White has foretold of a time when New York will suffer a great fire: “I was in the night season called upon to behold buildings rising story after story toward heaven….The scene that next passes before me was an alarm of fire. Men looked at the lofty and supposedly fireproof buildings and said: ‘They are perfectly safe.’ But these buildings were consumed as if made of pitch. The fire engines could do nothing to stay the destruction. The firemen were unable to operate the engines.” Testimonies, vol. 9, 12, 13.

I have often wondered why SDAs are not more alarmed by the inroads of spiritualism and Satan’s use of Mary in his efforts to deceive the world, and us also. The demon Mary claims to be the “Mother of the Second Advent,” and that she is preparing us for Christ’s Second Coming. Friends, that is the work of our church! For we are the true church that has been called to give the Elijah message to the world! But the “demon” Mary insists: “I am the Virgin of Revelation.” I am the “woman clothed with the sun who does battle with the dragon and his powerful army of evil.” The Thunder of Justice, 90, 99.

The audacity of the “demon” Mary to take the symbolic vision given to John in Revelation 12, which is a symbol of God’s true church, and incorrectly apply it to herself! The false Mary also elaborates on the Holy Spirit’s role in the last days: “On the feast of Pentecost, May 22, 1988, the message from Our Lady to the Marian Movement of Priests was clear: ‘The Holy Spirit will come to establish the glorious reign of Christ.…What will come to pass is something so very great that it will exceed anything that has taken place since the beginning of the world.’” Ibid., 309, 310. Friends, are we not waiting for the outpouring of the Spirit?—that “time when the events of the day of Pentecost shall be repeated with even greater power than on that occasion…and [a time] to maintain such a close connection with Him that they may be partakers of the latter rain when it shall be poured out.” Review and Herald, July 20, 1886.

The “demon” Mary also says that the apostles, “Saint Peter and Saint Paul, having come down from Heaven, shall preach in the whole world and designate a new Pope. A great light will flash from their bodies and will settle upon a cardinal who is to be Pope. Christianity, then, will spread throughout the world. He is the holy Pontiff, chosen by God to withstand the storm. At the end, he will have the gift of miracles, and his name shall be praised over the whole earth. Whole nations will come back to the church and the face of the earth will be renewed. Russia, England, and China will come into the church.” The Thunder of Justice, 353.

I do not know whether this scenario will happen or not, for Satan is the “father of lies.” But Ellen White has warned us that “the apostles, as personated by these lying spirits, are made to contradict what they wrote at the dictation of the Holy Spirit when on earth. They deny the divine origin of the Bible [the Roman Catholic Church denies that the Bible is the sole authority of God’s word and defends the founding fathers and their traditions], and thus tear away the foundation of the Christian’s hope.” The Great Controversy, 557.

The comparisons continue with Mary’s counterfeit message that she “will bring you to the full understanding of Sacred Scripture.…Above all, I will read to you the pages of its last book [Revelation], which you are living.” The Thunder of Justice, 90. Then, believe it or not, on page 100 of the same book, she quotes the Three Angels’ Messages from Revelation 14!!! Dearly beloved, “Knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep: for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed.” Romans 13:11.

Demons Will Appear Before Our Eyes

“I saw that Satan has power to bring before us the appearance of forms purporting to be our relatives or friends who sleep in Jesus. It will be made to appear as if these friends were actually present, the words they uttered while here, with which we were familiar, will be spoken, and the same tone of voice that they had while living will fall upon the ear. All this is to deceive the world and ensnare them into the belief of this delusion.

“I saw that the saints must have a thorough understanding of present truth, which they will be obliged to maintain from the Scriptures. They must understand the state of the dead; for the spirits of devils will yet appear to them, professing to be beloved relatives or friends, who will declare to them unscriptural doctrines. They will do all in their power to excite sympathy and will work miracles before them to confirm what they declare. The people of God must be prepared to withstand these spirits with the Bible truth that the dead know not anything, and that they who thus appear are the spirits of devils [including the relative of Jesus—the Virgin Mary—his mother!]…This delusion will spread, and we will have to contend with it face to face; and unless we are prepared for it, we will be ensnared and overcome. But if we do what we can on our part to be ready for the conflict that is just before us, God will do His part, and His all-powerful arm will protect us. He would sooner send every angel out of glory to make a hedge about faithful souls, than have them deceived and led away by the lying wonders of Satan.” Early Writings, 262.

Please read the chapter in The Great Controversy entitled The Scriptures a Safeguard, 593–602! Seventh-day Adventists have been given the truth on the state of the dead. We have been entrusted with the most precious light ever given to mortals to save us from the masterful, spiritualistic deceptions of Satan in these last days. Scripture support is abundant in defense of this truth that unmasks the lie perpetrated by Satan in the beginning that “ye shall not surely die.” The only defense for Seventh-day Adventists during the omega—when deceased loved ones, the apostles, the demon Mary, etc. begin making their false appearances, is a “thus saith the Lord.”

The Scriptures a Safeguard

And will it be Mary who will introduce, through the almost overpowering delusion, her son, the false Christ, to the world—”the crowning act in the drama of deception”? “In his assumed character of Christ, he claims to have changed the Sabbath to Sunday, and commands all to hallow the day which he has blessed. He declares that those who persist in keeping the seventh day are blaspheming his name by refusing to listen to his angels sent to them with light and truth.” Our cry must be “it is written:” “For the living know that they shall die: but the dead know not anything;” “the dead praise not the Lord, neither any [including Mary] that go down into silence;” for “his breath goeth forth, he returneth to his earth; in that very day his thoughts perish.” Ecclesiastes 9:5; Psalms 115:17; 146:4.

The words of Job address this subject quite clearly: “If a man die, shall he live again? All the days of my appointed time will I wait, till my change come. Thou shalt call and I will answer thee.” Job 14:14, 15. And John 5:28 and 29 tells us that it is the voice of Christ that wakes the sleeping saints on resurrection morn: “Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear His voice, And shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation.”

Mary, the beloved mother of Jesus, “is both dead and buried, and [her] sepulchre [no one knows its location] is with us unto this day.” Contrary to Roman Catholic teaching, Mary, like David, “is not ascended into the heavens.” Acts 2:29, 34. In fact, David himself wrote in Psalms 17:15 “As for me, I will behold Thy face in righteousness, when I awake, with Thy likeness.” Such words also apply to Mary!

Jesus spoke of death as sleep. In John 11:11 and 14, Christ stated: “Our friend Lazarus sleepeth, but I go to awake him out of sleep…Then Jesus said unto them plainly, Lazarus is dead.” In sound sleep one is wholly lost to consciousness; time goes by unmeasured; and mental activity is suspended for the time being. “Blessed rest for the weary righteous! Time, be it long or short, is but a moment to them. They sleep; they are awakened by the trumpet of God to a glorious immortality.” Great Controversy, 550.

The Sound of the Trumpet

There are three portions of Scripture that specifically mention a trumpet blast just prior to the Second Coming of Christ. And when these Scriptures are compared, they clearly reveal the exact time a deceased person will regain consciousness. The first trumpet verses are in 1 Corinthians 15:51-55: “Behold, I show you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump; for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.” Only God has immortality (see 1 Timothy 6:16), and no mortal will receive the gift of immortality until the last trumpet sounds at the Second Coming of Christ!

The second trumpet” verses say: “For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent [precede] them which are asleep. For the Lord Himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first; Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the lord. Wherefore comfort one another with these words.” 1 Thessa-lonians 4:15-18. Here again the Scriptures confirm that no man receives his immortality until he is awakened by the trumpet of Christ at the Second Coming.

The third trumpet verses actually address the magnitude of spiritualism and Satan’s lying wonders before the Second Coming of Christ: “Wherefore if they shall say unto you, Behold, he is in the desert; go not forth: behold, he is in the secret chambers; believe it not. For as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth even unto the west; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be. Immediately after the tribulation of those days…He shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.” Matthew 24:26, 27, 29a, 31. Careful examination of the three paragraphs above place the trumpet sounds at the time of the Second Coming—when the resurrected saints will receive their eternal reward of immortality, and not before! Praise God, the Scriptures are our safeguard!

The Origin of Man’s Consciousness in Death

The doctrine of consciousness after death, of the spirits of the dead being in communion with the living, has no foundation in the Scriptures, and yet this theory is affirmed as truth. The doctrine of man’s consciousness in death, especially the belief that spirits of the dead return to minister to the living, has prepared the way for modern spiritualism. Nearly all forms of ancient sorcery and witchcraft were founded upon a belief in communion with the dead. Modern spiritualism is founded upon the first lie by which Satan beguiled Eve in Eden: “Ye shall not surely die.”

And it was the Roman Catholic Church that originated and perpetuated the teaching of the Assumption—that Mary was assumed into heaven before her body saw corruption in the grave. “At the end of her life on earth, the Church teaches, Mary was ‘assumed’ body and soul, into heaven. This teaching was first proclaimed by St. Gregory of Tours in the sixth century. An earlier tradition has it that all the Apostles witnessed her death, but that when her tomb was opened years later it was found to be empty. The doctrine of the Assumption was defended in the Middle Ages by St. Albertus Magnus and St. Thomas Aquinas. It has been adhered to by Christians from the earliest times, and eventually, on 1 November 1950, Pope Pius XII declared the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin to be an article of faith. It is celebrated annually on 15 August.” Shrines of Our Lady, 6.

“Through the false doctrine [of the immortality of the soul] the way has been opened for the spirits of devils to deceive the people in representing themselves as the dead. Satanic agencies personate the dead [even the mother of Jesus Christ], and thus bring souls into captivity. Satan has a religion, he has a synagogue and devout worshippers. To swell the ranks of his devotees he uses all manner of deception. The signs and wonders of Spiritualism will become more and more pronounced as the professed Christian world rejects the plainly revealed truth of the word of God and refuses to be guided by a plain ‘Thus saith the Lord,’ accepting instead the doctrines and the commandments of men.” Signs of the Times, May 28, 1894.

Two Astonishing Letters

While writing this article, I received two amazing letters that I want to share with you. The first letter came from a woman in Puerto Rico who informed me that a statue of the Virgin Mary or “La Virgen del Rosaria del Pozo” is going to be built in the town of Sabana Grande. The statue’s size will be greater than that of the Statue of Liberty in New York. Here is what she wrote:

“Dear brethren of Modern Manna:

“I talked to Pastor Vierra about reaching the town of Sabana here in Puerto Rico. In May, 1953, the ‘Virgin’ appeared near a well (always wearing a rosary), to three children, two girls and a boy—still living. Thousands of people visited the island, 24 hours a day. Many ‘miracles’ happened, most of them healings of all kinds (See Great Controversy, 588.) Since then, this town celebrates a ‘Virgin Marathon,’ when around 200,000 to 300,000 people come to adore the Virgin. They celebrate mass and everything else. Now they are planning the ‘Ciudad Mystica’ (Mystic City), in order to attract people from all over the world. Enclosed is the newspaper story about it. Maranatha!”

It is interesting to note that the artists rendition of the new statue in the newspaper I received from Puerto Rico had the Virgin Mary decked with the colors white and blue—the very colors of Mother Earth as previously mentioned by New Ager, Peter Lemesurier. Mary is often portrayed in pictures and statues as dressed in these colors.

The second letter I received was initially sent to Pastor Bill Hughes in Florida from an SDA minister from Ghana, West Africa. It reads:

“Dear Pastor:

“On the 12th of August, 1999, I decided to go to a certain village and share the word of God with them [and] more particularly what is bound to happen before Jesus comes. Before that, it appeared in our daily paper that the Virgin Mary has appeared bod`ily in Togo, a country which shares the common border with Ghana and millions of people went to Togo to see the Virgin Mary. I thank God and you for clearly opening my eyes because I read it in one of your books sent to me—Is the Virgin Mary Dead or Alive? Chapter 19 clearly talks about how Satan will manifest himself through the Virgin Mary, and this has really motivated me to carry the message across whether rain or shine.”

Demons Will Urge Sunday-keeping

Before I close, I want to make another vital point. We read and hear much about the Sabbath vs. Sunday issue. This one papal error is trumpeted ever so loud and clear. Ads are run and books written, small and large, that expound on this subject with clarity and precision. But what is usually overlooked is the fact that wonder-working demons, in the form of dead humans, even the Virgin Mary, are going to urge upon the world Sunday-keeping, and that the violation of God’s moral law is the cause of the chaos and calamities that are increasing.

Once again, quoting from The Great Controversy: “The miracle-working power manifested through spiritualism will exert its influence against those who choose to obey God rather than men. Communications from the spirits will declare that God has sent them to convince the rejecters of Sunday [Reader, that may be you!] of their error, affirming that the laws of the land should be obeyed as the laws of God. They will lament the great wickedness in the world and second the testimony of religious teachers that the degraded state of morals is caused by the desecration of Sunday. Great will be the indignation excited against all who refuse to accept their testimony.” Great Controversy, 588, 589.

It would be worth your while to research the Spirit of Prophecy, vol. 4 . On page 406 it contains an extremely vital point: “As the spirits will profess faith in the Bible and express regard for Sunday, their work will be accepted as a manifestation of divine power.” Later in The Great Controversy, in the chapter entitled The Time of Trouble, the prophet warns us that as the “crowning act in the drama of deception, Satan himself will personate Christ.” That he will heal the diseases of the people and claim “to have changed the Sabbath to Sunday,” and will command all to hallow the day which he has blessed. Great Controversy, 624.

But, have you ever considered that before he appears to give support to this claim, the demon Mary, along with other demons impersonating well-known deceased Christians and infidels, will have already been advocating Sunday-keeping? Has anyone ever warned you of this? Is it possible that a false Ellen White might appear and contradict her very own writings, as the false Apostles of Christ will theirs? Are you prepared, beloved? Spiritualism is the means the devil will use to persuade the world and the churches into accepting the false sabbath! That is exactly why God has expressly warned us that “through the two [not one] great papal errors, the immortality of the soul and Sunday sacredness, Satan will bring the people under his deceptions.” Great Controversy, 588. Spiritualism will put the teeth into the Sunday issue!

Remember the past, dear friends, the alpha of apostasy resulted, within one devastating year, in the destruction of two major SDA institutions—Battle Creek Sanitarium and the Review and Herald Publishing Company! Never forget the prophet’s words: “The omega will follow, and will be received by those who are not willing to heed the warning God has given.” Selected Messages, Book 1, 200. A fearful woe is upon them! For if any form of spiritualism, like the warning given against pantheism, is accepted, it will result in the sweeping away of the structure! (See Special Testimonies, Series B, No. 2, 54, 55).

Friends, please take a close look at the Spirit of Prophecy, vol. 4. You will find the chapter entitled “Spiritualism” immediately preceding the chapter entitled “The Aims of the Papacy.” I believe the Lord deliberately linked the two chapters together to clearly magnify the fact that through spiritualism and its imposters, such as the Virgin Mary, the aims of the papacy will be accomplished—the enforcement of Sunday worship!

Watch, Pray, and Warn

Please, watch and pray, beloved, for soon: “The Protestants of the United States will be foremost in stretching their hands across the gulf to grasp the hand of spiritualism; they will reach over the abyss to clasp hands with the Roman power; and under the influence of this threefold union, this country will follow in the steps of Rome in trampling on the rights of conscience.” Great Controversy, 588.

Friends, the church and the world must be warned! Remember, Satan will not give one inch when we labor to expose his most powerful tool—spiritualism. Oh, how we have seen this prophecy fulfilled at Modern Manna since the publishing of Is the Virgin Mary Dead or Alive? But, thank God for Jesus and the heavenly messengers that have been promised to guard us from evil. All of those who are looking for the soon coming of our Lord have been commanded by Almighty God to scatter earth’s final message to warn the world—the Three Angels’ Messages that unmask the threefold union. We must scatter the Mary book wherever possible while there is still a remnant of time.

In the very near future, legislation may be passed that will classify the little God-given book as hate literature. What we must do, we must do quickly! And, please, do not only watch, but pray for the courage to proclaim the message and to stand for the truth when champions are few, knowing that the final warning will enrage the wicked against us. Soon the loud cry will be given with the power of the latter rain: “‘Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen, and is become the habitation of devils, and the hold of every foul spirit, and a cage of every unclean and hateful bird.’ The message of the fall of Babylon, as given by the second angel, is repeated, with the additional mention of the corruptions which have been entering the churches since 1844.” Early Writings, 277. The omega is coming! Maranatha!

False Justification by Faith, Part II

Back in the Dark Ages, God began to prepare a people for the Second Coming of Jesus by using Martin Luther to start the great Protestant Reformation in the preaching of justification by faith. Then in 1844 God brought forth His Advent movement preaching the additional truth that the divine law of God, contained in the most holy place within the heavenly sanctuary, must be obeyed in order for us to fully receive the righteousness of Christ. Many within the church, in their zeal to preach the law, did so in a legalistic way forgetting that we need Jesus in our hearts before we are able to keep the law and live the Christian life.

Ellen White addressed this problem when she wrote, “As a people, we have preached the law until we are as dry as the hills of Gilboa that hath neither dew nor rain.” Review and Herald, March 11, 1890.

To help the servant of the Lord meet this legalistic problem, the Lord sent E. J. Waggoner and A. T. Jones to preach justification by faith with the law. But many within the church, especially its leaders, thought they were trying to do away with the law. This is why the Minneapolis Conference of 1888 rejected the message of justification by faith.

Today we are facing the imminent return of Jesus, and once again Satan has infiltrated God’s true church with the celebration of New Theology. This theology proclaims a false justification by faith by teaching that all that is needed for salvation is love and unity. No one need be concerned about the law, since Christ kept it for us, they say. As a result millions among us have been duped to believe the lie of Satan that the divine law of God cannot be kept, even in the power of almighty God.

We need to have our eyes opened that through an experience of the new birth, born of repentance, confession, forgiveness and obedience, we are clothed with Christ’s righteousness and thus fit for heaven.

False Justification Enters the SDA Church

How is this false teaching of justification by faith affecting the Seventh-day Adventist Church? From the Remnant Herald, No. 43, November 1998, I gleaned the following.

In 1975, Bill Hibbles began an interdenominational Pentecostal-styled church near Chicago focused on church growth. Today about seventeen thousand adults attend his weekend seeker services and six thousand attend the midweek believers services. By all human standards the Willow Creek Church is a great success. This church has formed the Willow Creek Association (WCA), and presently over two thousand two hundred churches have joined. At least fifty-six of those are Seventh-day Adventist churches. They are listed on the WCA’s web site.

The Willow Creek Association is an organization of a fallen church of Babylon. It is a charismatic, Sunday-keeping church. These conferences and churches have now gone to a fallen church of Babylon in order to be better Seventh-day Adventists. Just as well may they go to the witch of Endor. They have entered Babylon, it will be well nigh impossible to recover such denominational entities for they have done so in the full light of truth.

An article in the Adventist Review, December 18, 1997, promotes this association by stating:

  1. Adventists should give Willow Creek a fair shake.
  2. Adventists should continue gleaning from Willow Creek.
  3. Gleaning from Willow Creek’s message does not mean forfeiting our message.

How can we be so blind? “Adventists, both pastors and lay people constantly make up one of the largest groups at Willow Creek’s half dozen annual seminars.” Ibid.

God’s flock worldwide must be warned concerning this phenomenon within the Seventh-day Adventist Church.

Work of the Omega

Elder Robert Pierson, former President of the General Conference, foresaw what was about to take place as a result of this new theology of a false justification by faith. In the October 1977, Ministry Magazine he wrote, “It would be well for every Seventh-day Adventist leader to prayerfully study the several plans of the apostate angel of light as he seeks to thwart the triumph of the Advent movement. Get out your Bibles and the Spirit of Prophecy, especially in Selected Messages, Book 1,193–205, and on your knees consider the startling facts faithfully chronicled by the Lord’s servant. Now note well what Ellen White, in this reference, warns could mark the work of the omega.

  1. The principles of truth that God in His wisdom has given to the remnant church would be disregarded. (Ibid., 204.)
  2. The truth will be criticized, scorned and derided. (Ibid., 201.)
  3. It will make of no effect the truth of heavenly origin. (Ibid., 204.)
  4. The religion would be changed. (Ibid.)
  5. The Sabbath, of course, would be lightly regarded, as also the God who created it. (Ibid., 205.)
  6. The fundamental principles that have sustained the work for the past fifty years would be accounted as an error. (Ibid., 204.)
  7. There would be a supposition that a great reformation was about to take place among Seventh-day Adventists and that this reformation would consist in giving up the doctrines which stand as the pillars of our faith. (Ibid.)
  8. A system of intellectual philosophy would be introduced. (Ibid.)
  9. The new philosophy would ‘rob the people of God and their experience, giving them instead a false science.’ (Ibid.)
  10. It would seek to weaken the preaching of the second advent by teaching “that the scenes just before us are not of sufficient importance to be given special attention.” Ibid.
  11. Books of a new order would be written. (Ibid.)
  12. A new organization would be established. (Ibid.)
  13. Nothing would be allowed to stand in the way of this new movement.” Ibid., 205.

Now go back over these thirteen points. Study them carefully and prayerfully. You may have to meet them sooner than you expect. The seeds of such apostasy are in the churches of Christendom all around us. Before Jesus returns, the Seventh-day Adventist Church may well be confronted with a crisis that will exceed in magnitude the Kellogg alpha apostasy. It “will be of a most startling nature.” Ibid., 197.

I believe we are in the omega crisis now. This is none other than the work of spiritualism, which has invaded God’s true church. In Spirit of Prophecy, vol. 4, 405, we read, “Spiritualism is now changing its form, veiling some of its most objectionable and immoral features, and assuming a Christian guise. Formerly it denounced Christ and the Bible, now it professes to accept both. The Bible is interpreted in a manner that is attractive to the unrenewed heart, while its solemn and vital truths are made of no effect. A God of love is presented; but His justice, His denunciation of sin, the requirements of His holy law, are all kept out of sight. Pleasing, bewitching fables captivate the senses of those who do not make God’s word the foundation of their faith. Christ is as verily rejected as before; but Satan has so blinded the eyes of the people that the deception is not discerned.” Jesus gives a test by which false teachers may be distinguished from the true. (See Thoughts from the Mount of Blessing, 145.)

Vatican II and Celebration

The Vatican II Papal document stated that it is their objective, through the celebration movement, to bring the whole of humanity into one fold (meaning the Roman Catholic Church). According to this document, the objectives of the second Vatican Council are:

  1. Let there be a custom application [use] of the word celebration.
  2. Let there be a custom of revival in celebration worship in which the people will be involved directly with both verbal and physical participation.
  3. Let there be a custom of celebration worship dialog between the pastor and the people.
  4. Let us use as much variety in worship as is possible.
  5. Let music, while they worship there, be the most effective.
  6. Lessen, [narrow] the difference, between the Eucharist and the Lord’s Supper. Teach people that the Eucharist and the Lord’s Supper is the foundation of Christian unity, friendship and celebration of the Lord’s day [Sunday].
  7. Do your best to encourage observation of Sunday, including rest from work.

As a result of these Vatican objectives, celebration began in the Catholic Church and soon the Pentecostal charismatic churches followed. The old method of Jesuit infiltration of Protestant churches was suspended by the new infiltration of Catholic philosophy called love and unity. The second Vatican Council added its blessing by no longer calling the Protestant Churches heretics but brethren separated from the Mother Church.

The Vatican II Council then began to emphasize the Holy Spirit by holding revivals among its nuns and priests. The result was startling. Tens of thousands of priests and nuns began speaking in tongues. Now both the Catholic and the Protestant had something in common. They both spoke in tongues in the celebration movement.

Confronting Celebration

John Janiuk confronts the celebration movement with the Three Angels’ Message in his book, The Great Controversy Endgame, No. 2. He clearly differentiates between what is true and what is false justification by faith.

“The Three Angels’ Message is God’s call to leave Babylon. It is the message of separation.…The celebration movement calls for unity of all churches.

“The Three Angels’ Message is a warning message, but the celebration movement is the message of peace and security, love and unity. Sin and the law of God are treated lightly.

“The foundation of the Three Angels’ Message is the message of the everlasting gospel (true justification by faith).…The foundation of the celebration movement is a false gospel (a false justification)—salvation in sin—‘you will be sinning until the Second Coming of Christ.’ It is a gospel without power. If you sin before and after accepting the gospel, where is the power of the gospel? The truth is, if you accept a false gospel you have no power from God.…Satan demonstrated his power with great effect in Eden, and we are still affected by that same power today. Today he says that we cannot keep God’s commandments. If you believe his lies then you will not obey God’s law.

“The Bible says: ‘…here are those who keep the commandments of God and the faith of Jesus.’ The pen of Inspiration says: ‘Christ left His heavenly home, and came to this world to show that only by being connected with divinity can man keep the law of God. In itself, humanity is tainted and corrupt, but Christ brought moral power to man, and those who live in communion with Him overcome, as He overcame.” Signs of the Times, December 10, 1896.

“‘He who has not sufficient faith in Christ to believe that He can keep him from sinning, has not the faith that will give him an entrance into the kingdom of God.” Review and Herald, March 10, 1904. (See also Acts of the Apostles, 523.)

A Call to Righteousness

“The Three Angels’ Messages are calling the whole of humanity to ‘Fear [reverence] God’ in complete surrender to God and His Word, and also His will, the Ten moral Commandments and the gospel. But the celebration movement depends on theology which ‘Is interpreted in a manner that is attractive to the unrenewed hearts, while its solemn and vital truths are made of no effect. A God of love is presented; but His justice, His denunciation of sin, the requirements of His holy law, are all kept out of sight.” Spirit of Prophecy, vol. 4, 405.

“The Three Angels’ Messages call to ‘Give glory to Him.’ Mrs. White says: ‘To give glory to God is to reveal His character in our own, and thus make Him known. And in whatever way we make known the Father or the Son, we glorify God.” SDA Bible Commentary, vol. 7, 979. But the celebration movement does not preach this.

“The Three Angels’ Messages proclaim ‘For the hour of His judgment is come.’ This is the pre-advent, Investigative Judgment, which began in the year 1844. The celebration movement does not warn the people about this. However, if the subject is mentioned they say: ‘Do not be afraid of the judgment, if you believe in Jesus, don’t worry about it.’

‘Worship Him who made heaven and earth, the sea and springs of water.’ God tells us to keep holy the Sabbath day as a special day in memorial of His creation and redemption. But the purpose, goal, and aim of the celebration movement according to Vatican II is to observe Sunday and recognize the Pope as the Vicar of Jesus Christ and submit to him.

Babylon is Fallen, Come Out of Her

“The Second Angel’s Message says: ‘Babylon is fallen.’ Why? Because Babylon rejected the Biblical truths. Revelation 18:2 describes the last day condition of Babylon. The fallen churches [Catholic and Protestant] attacked the Seventh-day Adventist church with the celebration movement. The Bible says ‘a habitation of devils.’ Of course, God still has, in these fallen churches, some individuals who are the children of God. Our message, especially in the time of the loud cry will be ‘Come out of her, my people’ Revelation 18:4.

“The Third Angel’s Message is the most fearful of any before. This message was proclaimed to mortal man, as a warning against receiving the mark of the beast (observance of Sunday as the Sabbath). According to the document of Vatican Synod II the purpose of the celebration movement is that the whole world shall observe Sunday and submit to the Papacy. It does not matter to them what else you believe so long as you submit to those two things. Do you see where this movement is leading us?

“The Three Angels’ Messages are summarized in Revelation 14:12 and describe what people will be like after they accept these messages. ‘Here is the patience of the saints, here are they that keep the commandments of God and the faith of Jesus.’ Here is presented the main characteristics and qualities of God’s people:

  1. The patience of the saints
  2. They keep the commandments of God
  3. They have the faith of Jesus

“But the celebration movement says: ‘We cannot keep the commandments of God.’ ‘Men who are under the control of Satan repeat these accusations against God, in asserting that men cannot keep the law of God.’ Signs of the Times January 16, 1896. (We must) ‘not only accept Christ as Saviour of the world, but as a personal Saviour from sin and sinning. Faith is nothing if it falls short of this.’ Signs of the Times August 26, 1889.” The Great Controversy Endgame, No. 2.

Music, Love and Praise!

The heart of celebration worship is found in its music, Contemporary Christian or Christian rock. Their message is love and praise for the most part. It does not call to repentance, appeal for sacrifice, or for prayer for sinners. The Second Coming is almost absent. Bible doctrines are not found.

Pioneering Seventh-day Adventists sang many hymns containing its message. They did so because they believed that God had called them to proclaim a message even in their singing. The current Seventh-day Adventist Hymnal has a topical index of hymns. Nearly every major doctrine is represented there: Salvation through faith in Christ, the Second Coming, the Sabbath, the judgment, the sleep of the dead, stewardship and even the sanctuary along with still others. God intended that the great hymns of faith should be used to teach His end-time message.

For example, No. 412 in the Hymnal illustrates this point. “Reconciled by His death for my sin, Justified by His life pure and clean, Sanctified by obeying His word, Glorified when returneth my Lord.” What a wonderful balance, a presentation of the gospel that is given in such songs. Preachers and laity would both be less likely to stray from the path of truth if they paid attention to the message of such songs.

“The great fear is that these contemporary songs are replacing the message songs entirely and are doing their part to produce a generation devoid of doctrinal certainty. A church’s music…is an essential part of its self-identity, its witnessing package, and even its survival kit.” Adventists’ Affirm, 1998, 8–21.

The ex-choir director of heaven uses his celebration music to charm people, to bind them to himself and to control them. He uses emotionally oriented religion that depends on feeling rather than on the word of God.

The Greatest Challenge Facing SDAs

Samuel Koranteng-Pipim, while at Andrews University, wrote in his doctorate thesis entitled, Receiving the Word, 38, the following, “The greatest challenge facing the Seventh-day Adventist Church does not come from the independent right, who operate from without, but rather from the liberal left, who are working from within. These moderate liberals seek to redefine historic Adventist beliefs according to their new views of the Bible. Indeed, as some of the Adventist scholars have begun using the historical-critical approaches of liberal theology, the church has been challenged in its distinctive truths, such as the prophetic significance of 1844, the necessity of Christ’s substitutionary atonement for sinners, and the self-understanding of the Seventh-day Adventist Church as God’s end-time remnant. At the same time the church has been thrown into turmoil over abortion, polygamy, divorce and remarriage and women’s ordination and homosexuality.”

Can you imagine an Adventist professor of religion who wrote in the Spectrum of May 1993 on page 46 an article entitled, “Apocryphy, Who Needs It?” In the beginning of this article there is a thought-provoking question. “How seriously should Adventists take apocalyptic books like Daniel, Revelation and The Great Controversy?” This theologian answers, “Perhaps we should replace them with the gospel of love, acceptance and forgiveness.” This is the central message of the celebration movement and its worship services.

Contrary Advice

Professor Steve Daily, who taught at La Sierra University and was also their chaplain, is one of the most liberal among us today. He suggests some practical things Adventists can do to contribute to this goal. Among these are:

  1. We can cease to think or speak of ourselves as the remnant church and see ourselves as a part of God’s larger remnant.
  2. We can take advantage of the special opportunities we have to attend other churches, since they meet on a different day, to befriend them and learn from them and share with them and affirm the good things we see in them.
  3. Each of us can make a special effort to maintain active membership in at least one non-Adventist community service organization to combat our natural tendency to isolation.
  4. We can involve ourselves in inter-denominational Bible study and a charismatic intercessory prayer group to broaden our spiritual perspectives.

(Excerpted from Steve Daily’s book, Adventists for a New Generation, 315, 316.)

Such advice is absolutely contrary to the Spirit of Prophecy. Is this the time for Seventh-day Adventists to seek such new light on worship, church growth and learning from others? (See Early Writings, 124, 125.)

Let us never forget that God will finish His work in His church and then He will finish His work in the world. But if we, as a church, reject true justification by faith and continue to proclaim a false justification, then true revival and reformation will not take place. We will not receive the great outpouring of the Holy Spirit in the latter rain and we will never finish God’s work in this world. We will lose our identity, our credibility and the purpose for our existence.

What a tragedy this would be! May God give us wisdom, understanding, knowledge and power to fulfill this for His honor and glory and also for the salvation of the people of the world. Then we will go home to praise Him who loved us and gave Himself for us. If you have discovered that the church you attend has become a celebration church in doctrine, in music and worship, may God grant you heavenly wisdom to know what you can do to help restore a worship service in which God can bless. It may be that the Lord will lead you to a nearby church with a historic Seventh-day Adventist pastor. Praise God, He still has many. And if need be, God may lead you to a nearby home church or have you begin a home church in which it can be truly said, “Here is the patience of the saints. Here are they that keep the commandments of God and the faith of Jesus.”

God’s Special Gift for His Last Day Church, Part I

If you are interested in evangelism, you need to be well acquainted with the writings and the speeches of the apostle Peter, because there are hundreds of millions of people in the world who have a special regard for the apostle Peter. They say that he was the first head of their church.

I love to talk to my Roman Catholic friends about the apostle Peter. I just love it! They are shocked when they find out what the apostle Peter said. Did you know that it is recorded in Acts 10 that a man by the name of Cornelius was so happy to see the apostle Peter that he knelt down to worship him?

The apostle Peter said, “Stand up, I am just a man.” Did you know that the first pope would not even allow anybody to get down on their knees in front of him? Something has changed, has it not? Well, the apostle Peter had something to say about the last days.

Where is the Promise?

“Knowing this first: that scoffers will come in the last days [Some translations say “mockers.”], walking according to their own lusts, and saying, ‘Where is the promise of His coming? For since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of creation.’ For this they willfully forget: that by the word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth standing out of water and in the water, by which the world that then existed perished, being flooded with water. But the heavens and the earth which are now preserved by the same word, are reserved for fire until the day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men.” 2 Peter 3:3.

Now notice what the apostle Peter says is going to happen in the last days, the days in which you and I are living. He says there are going to be scoffers. What are they going to scoff at? They are going to scoff at the idea of creation. They are going to scoff at the idea that the world came into existence by the word of God.

The apostle Paul talked about this, too. Paul said in the last day perilous times will come. (See 2 Timothy 3.)

Spiritual Suicide

Let me list for you three things that have happened in the last 200 years, things which have brought the world into greater spiritual peril than at any previous time in world history.

  1. The Development of Higher Criticism.

I attended Andrews University. Do not let anybody think that I am recommending that you go there. That is one of the most dangerous places in the world that you could go for an education. My son is an engineer, and he went to a Seventh-day Adventist College in Washington State. When he went there, I talked to him. I said, “Son, it is all right with me if you go to this place and study engineering, but I do not want you to study theology there.”

Now that seems strange. I studied theology at that very place. I told my son, I do not want you to study Bible, and I do not want you to study theology there. Why? Because in our time, theology has become one of the most dangerous things to study in the universities and colleges.

Why? Well, there are a number of reasons, but one of the reasons has to do with the development of higher criticism. The net result of higher criticism is that after you have studied for several years under teachers who have imbibed these theories (and they have imbibed them from other universities where they got their doctoral degrees in theology) you have a completely different idea about the Bible. You do not have nearly as much confidence in the Bible anymore.

You no longer look at it as the infallible Word of God. Christian leaders need to know that we are up against a world of unbelief.

The Age of Unbelief

We are producing a series of programs for television on the age of unbelief—the time in which we are living. Higher criticism is a big part of this. It has destroyed faith in the Bible for the majority of Christian ministers and priests.

There are preachers all over the world who claim to be Protestant preachers and Catholic priests, and they do not believe what the Bible says about how the world came into existence. They do not believe that Moses wrote the first five books of the Bible. They do not believe in the virgin birth. They do not believe in the blood atonement, and they do not believe in the Second Coming of Christ.

Have you ever read, in the papers or magazines, about meetings where theologians get together and discuss the Second Coming of Christ? Most of them do not believe in it. Why? the outgrowth and development of higher criticism. Christian religious leaders all over the world do not believe the Bible the way Martin Luther, John Calvin and our spiritual forefathers did.

This has brought the world into the most perilous time since the creation of the world. But there are two other things that have happened in the last 200 years that have also brought the world into these perilous times.

  1. The Development of the Theory of Evolution and Uniformitarianism.

In 2 Peter 3, Peter specified that in the last days the theory of uniformitarianism would be taught. That is the theory that all things continue as they were from the beginning.

In 1979, during the Christmas season, my sister’s family, my parents and I were all visiting my brother, Marshall. He and his family were pastoring a church in Pennsylvania. We decided one day to take a trip to the Smithsonian Institute, one of the largest museums in the world. It has many, many different buildings; you cannot visit everything in one day. I decided I was going to go through the geology building.

I knew what I would find. They would say that the earth was millions of years old. By the way, you can figure out from the Bible, within fifty years, how old the world is. It is around 6000 years old right now.

Of course geologists say that the world is billions of years old; the common figure is four and one-half billion years. So I went into their geology building, because I wanted to know what their evidence is.

One Piece of Evidence

Do you know what evidence they have? They have only one piece of evidence for the whole thing. I went through the whole building. I looked at all the exhibits and the explanations and found they only have one piece of evidence—a theory. It is the theory of uniformitarianism. Do you know what the theory of uniformitarianism is? They look at the depth of the sediment at the bottom of a lake. Then they measure and they say that the sediment is gathering at the rate of 1/16 of an inch per year, so that means that this lake is x many years old.

Everything just continues the same. That is the theory of uniformitarianism. That, along with the theory of evolution, has worked to destroy the confidence of men in the Bible and the inspired writings of God.

I am glad that at least some evolutionists are candid, that they know what they believe. One of the leading educators, who is an evolutionist, has written “Now if the theory of evolution is really true, it has to mean the following. It has to mean that there is no God, or gods, there is no such thing as a moral law, and there is no such thing as a future. When you die, that is the end of everything. Also, there is no such thing as free choice.”

He just listed those four things. If evolution is true, then those four things have to be so. We are living in a time when, if you go to any university anywhere in the world—not just the United States—but Europe, Africa, South America, Australia, this theory has permeated all fields of learning.

Made in the Image of Whom?

Has that brought the world into a spiritual crisis? When you are bringing up a young child, does it make a difference in their behavior whether they think they are made in the image of God or they think that they descended from an ape? It makes all the difference in the world in their behavior. Do you want your children to act like animals, or like sons and daughters of God?

The first development has affected the entire religious world. The second development has involved the entire educational and scientific world, every field of human thought. The third development in the world has involved just about everybody except the people who believe in the Bible and know some things in the Bible.

  1. The Development of Modern Spiritualism

This development, which started in 1848, has affected the entire world, and it is affecting everybody It affects atheists, agnostics, evolutionists, scientists, government leaders and church leaders in both Catholic and Protestant faiths. It has permeated the whole world.

Those three things show us how dangerous the world has become and why we are living in an age and world of unbelief. Peter talked about it, Paul talked about it, and God knew about it.

What Would You Do?

Let me ask you this question, and I want you to think about it. If you were in God’s position thousands of years ago, and you foresaw what was going to happen in the world in the last days, and you knew what the devil was going to do to deceive the whole world, (God had His prophet record in Revelation 12:9 how the devil would deceive the whole world); and you wanted to save as many people as you could, what would you do?

Let us see what God said He was going to do about it. In the Old Testament, one of the greatest prophets. Elijah, came to the Children of Israel at a time when they were in a time like we are in today, when there was an apostasy and people did not believe in the God of heaven, and they were kneeling down to Baal and idols.

Elijah came with a message. It was a stern message, but it woke up a lot of people.There was a great that went throughout the land and throughout the Children of Israel.

Ever after that time whenever a prophet arose who brought a great reformation, they would call them an Elijah prophet. God talked about this through the prophet Malachi: “‘Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet Before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord. And he will turn The hearts of the fathers to the children, And the hearts of the children to their fathers, Lest I come and strike the earth with a curse.’” Malachi 4:5, 6.

The Elijah Prophet for the End Times

Our heavenly Father, foreseeing the great crisis that the world would be brought into in the last days because of the theories of higher criticism, the theories of evolution, and because of the working of spiritualism which has inundated the world with deception, said, “Before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord, I know that you are going to go into perilous times. You are going to be in very deceptive times. The devil is going to deceive the whole world, but I am going to do something special for My people. I am going to send you Elijah the prophet.”

So the Jews began to look for the coming of Elijah the prophet. When Jesus came, the Jews were looking for the coming of Elijah the prophet. “Now this is the testimony of John, when the Jews sent priests and Levites from Jerusalem to ask him, ‘Who are you?’ He confessed, and did not deny, but confessed, ‘I am not the Christ.’ And they asked him, ‘What then? Are you Elijah?’ He said, ‘I am not.’ ‘Are you the prophet?’ [That is the prophet Moses predicted in Deuteronomy 18:15.] And he answered, ‘No.’ Then they said to him, ‘Who are you that we may give an answer to those who sent us? What do you say about yourself?’ He said: ‘I am “The voice of one crying in the wilderness;’ Make straight the way of the Lord,’” as the prophet Isaiah said.’ Now those who were sent were from the Pharisees. And they asked him saying, ‘Why then do you baptize if you are not the Christ, nor Elijah, nor the Prophet?’ John answered them, saying, ‘I baptize with water, but there stands One among you whom you do not know.’” John 1:19–26.

Spiritual Blindness

Here is what the problem was with the Jews. It is a problem among many Christians today; I hope it is not your problem. You know the Bible says that spiritual things are spiritually discerned. (See 1 Corinthians 2:14.) You read that and if you cannot discern spiritual things and all you can see is literal things, you are going to be in trouble. You are not going to understand the Word of God.

The Jews knew that God had taken Elijah in a chariot up into heaven in the days of Ahab. Elijah was up there, and they said, “Before the Messiah comes (this is what they taught) God is going to send Elijah, the same one who spoke to Ahab and Jezebel. God is going to send him back down from heaven to us.” And so they asked John, “Are you Elijah? You know, the one that talked to Ahab and Jezebel,” and John said, “No, no I am not.”

Do you know what they said then? They said, “Well, then the Messiah cannot be coming yet, because before the Messiah comes Elijah has to come back down from heaven.” What was their problem? They did not discern spiritual things. Was John the Baptist the Elijah prophet who was promised? Yes, he was. Jesus said so.

In Matthew 11:11–14 it says, “‘Assuredly, I say to you, among those born of women there has not risen one greater than John the Baptist; but he who is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he [that is greater in privilege]. And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffers violence, and the violent take it by force. For all the prophets and the law prophesied until John. And if you are willing to receive it, he is Elijah who is to come.’”

More than a Prophet

Was John the Baptist the Elijah prophet? Yes, he was. And notice what Jesus said about the Elijah prophet. He said, “This person is a prophet all right, but he is more than a prophet.”

Now let me tell you something. This is the very best news on the face of the earth right now. There have been three times since the beginning of the world that God has sent His children, because of the crisis they were in, not just a prophet, but somebody who was more than a prophet.

The first time God sent His children somebody who was more than a prophet was when He sent Moses. Miriam and Aaron were prophets, too. One time they got jealous of Moses, and they said, “Well, has God spoken through Moses and has He not also spoken through us?” (See Numbers 12:2.) Do you remember what the Lord said to them? He said, “Why were you not afraid to speak like this about My servant Moses?” And the Lord said to them, “If there is a prophet among you, I, the Lord, will make Myself known to him in a vision and dream, but My servant Moses is not so. I will speak to him face to face or mouth to mouth.” (See Numbers 12:6–8.) Moses was more than just a prophet.

The second time God sent His children somebody who was more than a prophet was when He sent John the Baptist. When Jesus came, that was the most important event of the ages. Before Jesus came God sent His children somebody who was a prophet all right, but somebody who was more than a prophet because that was a crisis period and they needed it.

The third time God sent His children somebody who was a prophet, who was more than a prophet, was in the last days. God said, “I am going to send you Elijah the prophet.” Now the Elijah prophet before the first coming was more than a prophet, and the Elijah prophet before the Second Coming is more than a prophet, too. We will see that soon. This is the best possible news I could tell you

Confidence Lost

You and I are living in the most spiritually dangerous time of all the ages, and we need special instruction from heaven to keep us focused in Bible truth. We are dealing with the world. Even the people who are the spiritual leaders of the world do not have confidence in the Scriptures anymore because of the theories of higher criticism.

The scientific community and the educated people do not have confidence in the Bible because of the theories of geology and evolution, which they have been taught since they were young. And nobody, believes, in what this Book teaches anymore, who has been involved in spiritualism because they have been taught opposite theories that are contrary to this Book.

God knew that this would happen, Jesus predicted it in Luke 18, and so He promised through Malachi the prophet. He said that before the great and dreadful day of the Lord, He was going to do something special for us. He knew we were going to be in trouble: we were going to be in perilous times. There were going to be scoffers; there were going to be mockers. It was going to be an age of unbelief.

So the Lord said, “I am going to send to you Elijah the prophet, somebody who is more than a prophet.” John the Baptist was more than a prophet. The Elijah prophet is to be more than a prophet. We know that from the words of Jesus in Matthew 11.

Jewish Tragedy

The great tragedy that happened to the Jews is that the Elijah prophet came. They asked him, “Are you Elijah? Are you the one that talked to Ahab and Jezebel?” He said, “No, I am not.” So they said, “That is not the Elijah prophet” and they left, and they missed out. Here they had had contact with the man whom Jesus said there had never been anybody born of a woman who was greater than this man. (See Matthew 11:11.) He was more than a prophet. He was a special messenger sent to prepare the people for the Messiah.

Do you know whom it was that became Jesus’ disciples? If you study the New Testament, you will find that when Jesus came it was the people who had been with John the Baptist. Was it important whether or not they knew whom the Elijah prophet was? Well, it made all the difference in the world whether or not they would be ready to meet the Messiah.

Now the Jews had the Bible, that is the Old Testament. That was all that had been written so far. Sometimes I meet people who say, “Pastor John, I do not need any more prophecy. I have the Bible.” I say, “Oh, bless your heart, I have the Bible, too, and I love every word of it.”

But do you realize, my dear friend, that those Jews in the time of Christ missed what God wanted them to know because they did not accept the gift of prophecy that God sent to them just before Jesus came? They missed it! The most wonderful thing that God sent to them and they missed it! That was part of the reason they rejected the Messiah.

To be continued……

Bible Study Guides – Spiritualism Influences the World

August 4–August 10, 2002

MEMORY VERSE: “And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works.” 2 Corinthians 11:14, 15.

STUDY HELPS: The Great Controversy, 511–562; 582–592.

INTRODUCTION: “The last great delusion is soon to open before us. Antichrist is to perform his marvelous works in our sight. So closely will the counterfeit resemble the true that it will be impossible to distinguish between them except by the Holy Scriptures. By their testimony every statement and every miracle must be tested.” The Great Controversy, 593.

1 How were our first parents deceived into sin? Genesis 3:1–6.

NOTE: “The tempter often whispers that the Christian life is one of exaction, of rigorous duties; that it is hard to be on the watch continually, and there is no need of being so particular. It was thus that he deceived and overthrew Eve in Eden, telling her that God’s commands were arbitrary and unjust, given to prevent men from becoming free and exalted, like himself. Satan’s object is the same now as then. He desires to deceive and ruin us.” Youth’s Instructor, November 21, 1883.

2 How closely did the Egyptian magicians’ counterfeit resemble the real? Exodus 7:11, 12.

NOTE: “The magicians seemed to perform several things with their enchantments similar to those things which God wrought by the hand of Moses and Aaron. They did not really cause their rods to become serpents, but by magic, aided by the great deceiver, made them to appear like serpents, to counterfeit the work of God. Satan assisted his servants to resist the work of the Most High, in order to deceive the people, and encourage them in their rebellion. Pharaoh would grasp at the least evidence he could obtain to justify himself in resisting the work of God performed by Moses and Aaron. He told these servants of God that his magicians could do all these wonders. The difference between the work of God and that of the magicians was, one was of God, the other of Satan. One was true, the other false.” The Spirit of Prophecy, vol. 1, 184.

3 When God would not communicate with Saul, to whom did he turn? 1 Samuel 28:7, 13, 14.

NOTE: “When Saul inquired for Samuel, the Lord did not cause Samuel to appear to Saul. He saw nothing. Satan was not allowed to disturb the rest of Samuel in the grave, and bring him up in reality to the witch of Endor. God does not give Satan power to resurrect the dead. But Satan’s angels assume the form of dead friends, and speak and act like them, that through professed dead friends he can the better carry on his work of deception. Satan knew Samuel well, and he knew how to represent him before the witch of Endor, and to utter correctly the fate of Saul and his sons.” Conflict and Courage, 172.

“[In 1 Chronicles 10:13, 14] it is distinctly stated that Saul inquired of the familiar spirit, not of the Lord. He did not communicate with Samuel, the prophet of God; but through the sorceress he held intercourse with Satan.” Patriarchs and Prophets, 683.

4 How do Satan and his evil angels deceive people? 2 Corinthians 11:14, 15.

NOTE: “God revealed to His servant the perils of the church in the last days. He writes, ‘Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils; speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron.’ [1 Timothy 4:2.]” Confrontation, 92.

“In the future, Satan’s superstitions will assume new forms. Errors will be presented in a pleasing and flattering manner. False theories, clothed with garments of light, will be presented to God’s people. Thus Satan will try to deceive, if possible, the very elect.” Testimonies, vol. 8, 293.

5 In what likeness did the prophet describe the spirits that are to be in our day? Revelation 16:13.

NOTE: “We need to be anchored in Christ, rooted and grounded in the faith. Satan works through agents. He selects those who have not been drinking of the living waters, whose souls are athirst for something new and strange, and who are ever ready to drink at any fountain that may present itself. . . .” “Ellen G. White Comments,” Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary, vol. 5, 1099.

“There will be seducing spirits and doctrines of devils in the midst of the church, and these evil influences will increase; but hold fast the beginning of your confidence firm unto the end.” Review and Herald, August 9, 1906.

6 How do these spirits deceive the whole world? Revelation 16:14.

NOTE: “Satan has long been preparing for his final effort to deceive the world. The foundation of his work was laid by the assurance given to Eve in Eden: [Genesis 3:4, 5 quoted]. Little by little he has prepared the way for his masterpiece of deception in the development of spiritualism. He has not yet reached the full accomplishment of his designs; but it will be reached in the last remnant of time. . . . [Revelation 16:13, 14 quoted.] Except those who are kept by the power of God, through faith in His word, the whole world will be swept into the ranks of this delusion. The people are fast being lulled to a fatal security, to be awakened only by the outpouring of the wrath of God.” The Great Controversy, 561.

7 What deceptive miracles will be used by evil spirits? 2 Thessalonians 2:8–12. Compare Matthew 24:24.

NOTE: “It is fondly supposed that heathen superstitions have disappeared before the civilization of the twentieth century. But the word of God and the stern testimony of facts declare that sorcery is practiced in this age as verily as in the days of the old-time magicians. The ancient system of magic is, in reality, the same as what is now known as modern spiritualism. Satan is finding access to thousands of minds by presenting himself under the guise of departed friends. . . .

“The magicians of heathen times have their counterpart in the spiritualistic mediums, the clairvoyants, and the fortune-tellers of today. . . . Could the veil be lifted from before our eyes, we should see evil angels employing all their arts to deceive and to destroy. Wherever an influence is exerted to cause men to forget God, there Satan is exercising his bewitching power. . . . The apostle’s admonition to the Ephesian church should be heeded by the people of God today: ‘Have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them.’ Ephesians 5:11.” The Acts of the Apostles, 289, 290.

8 Why do Satan and his angels perform miracles? Revelation 13:13–15.

NOTE: “The time is at hand when Satan will work miracles to confirm minds in the belief that he is God. All the people of God are now to stand on the platform of truth as it has been given in the third angel’s message. All the pleasant pictures, all the miracles wrought, will be presented in order that, if possible, the very elect shall be deceived. The only hope for any one is to hold fast the evidences that have confirmed the truth in righteousness. Let these be proclaimed over and over again, until the close of this earth’s history.” Review and Herald, August 9, 1906.

9 For what purpose has Satan designed the last day miracles? Matthew 24:24, last part.

NOTE: “The time is coming when Satan will work miracles right in your sight, claiming that he is Christ; and if your feet are not firmly established upon the truth of God, then you will be led away from your foundation. The only safety for you is to search for the truth as for hid treasures. Dig for the truth as you would for treasures in the earth, and present the word of God, the Bible, before your Heavenly Father, and say, Enlighten me; teach me what is truth. . . . It is important that you continually search the Scriptures. You should store the mind with the word of God . . . .” Review and Herald, April 3, 1888.

10 How will the Christian respond to Satan’s deceptions? Isaiah 8:19, 20.

NOTE: “For thousands of years Satan has been gaining an experience in learning how to deceive; and to those who live in this age he comes with almost overwhelming power. Our only safety is found in obedience to God’s word, which has been given us as a sure guide and counselor. God’s people today are to keep themselves distinct and separate from the world, its spirit, and its influences.” Fundamentals of Education, 501.

“So closely will the counterfeit resemble the true that it will be impossible to distinguish between them except by the Holy Scriptures. By their testimony every statement and every miracle must be tested.” The Great Controversy, 593.

11 To meet these deceptions, how are we to prepare? 2 Timothy 2:15; Ephesians 6:11–18.

NOTE: “Those who endeavor to obey all the commandments of God will be opposed and derided. They can stand only in God. In order to endure the trial before them, they must understand the will of God as revealed in His word; they can honor Him only as they have a right conception of His character, government, and purposes, and act in accordance with them. None but those who have fortified the mind with the truths of the Bible will stand through the last great conflict. To every soul will come the searching test: Shall I obey God rather than men? The decisive hour is even now at hand. Are our feet planted on the rock of God’s immutable word? Are we prepared to stand firm in defense of the commandments of God and the faith of Jesus?” The Great Controversy, 593, 594.

Adventism and Spiritualism, Part I

A question that is always on my mind is, How are we going to help God’s people to be prepared for the great crisis that is coming in the closing days of this world?

The story of the woman who was caught in adultery is recorded in John 8. Jesus told her not only that she was pardoned but that she was to go and sin no more. Then He stated: “I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.”

The Jews did not like being told they were in the dark, and they started arguing with Jesus about it. Jesus explained to them, “I have come as a light into the world, that whoever believes in Me should not abide [not remain] in darkness.” John 12:46. In other words, Jesus is telling the Jews, “You are in the dark, but if you will look to Me, you will come out of the dark, and you will have light.” Always remember that the experience of God’s people at the first advent is spoken of by Ellen White as a representation of the experience of God’s chosen people at the time of the second advent. (See The Great Controversy, 351.)

Earth Will be Dark

Now in the last days of the world’s history, the Bible predicts that the earth all over will be dark. “For behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, And deep darkness the people; But the Lord will arise over you, And His glory will be seen upon you.” Isaiah 60:2. What is this darkness that is going to cover the earth and the deep darkness the people? “So the great dragon was cast out, that serpent of old, called the Devil and Satan, who deceives the whole world; he was cast to the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.” Revelation 12:9. The devil deceives the whole world.

Revelation 16:13, 14 says, “And I saw three unclean spirits like frogs [coming] out of the mouth of the dragon, out of the mouth of the beast, and out of the mouth of the false prophet. For they are spirits of demons, performing signs, [which] go out to the kings of the earth and of the whole world, to gather them to the battle of that great day of God Almighty.” The earth is going to be filled with darkness, spiritual darkness, as a result of the deceptions of the devil. How much of the world does mystical Babylon cover? All of it. Revelation 18:23 talks about Babylon: “The light of a lamp shall not shine in you anymore, and the voice of bridegroom and bride shall not be heard in you anymore. For your merchants were the great men of the earth, for by your sorcery all the nations were deceived.”

Do you believe we are living in the last days of this world’s history? If we are living in the last days, then what we just read in Revelation is happening, and we should be aware of it. What is the masterpiece of deception? “As spiritualism more closely imitates the nominal Christianity of the day, it has greater power to deceive and ensnare.” The Great Controversy, 588.

Last Great Deception

The last great deception is going to appear to be a Christian teaching, but it is actually going to come from the wrong spirit. Ellen White says, “Satan himself is converted, after the modern order of things. He will appear in the character of an angel of light. Through the agency of spiritualism, miracles will be wrought, the sick will be healed, and many undeniable wonders will be performed. And as the spirits will profess faith in the Bible, and manifest respect for the institutions of the church, their work will be accepted as a manifestation of divine power.” Ibid. The devil himself professes to be a Christian!

The spirits will be professed Christians. They will go to church. They will profess faith in Christ. But it is a deception, a masterful deception. “The line of distinction between professed Christians and the ungodly is now hardly distinguishable. Church members love what the world loves and are ready to join with them, and Satan determines to unite them in one body and thus strengthen his cause by sweeping all into the ranks of spiritualism.” Ibid.

Does the devil’s plan to sweep all people into the ranks of spiritualism include the Roman Catholics? How about the Protestant churches? Are they all going to be deceived?

“Protestants, having cast away the shield of truth, will also be deluded. Papists, Protestants, and worldlings [people who do not go to any church] will alike accept the form of godliness without the power, and they will see in this union a grand movement for the conversion of the world and the ushering in of the long-expected millennium.” Ibid., 588, 589.

The devil decides that through spiritualism he is going to get all people—the Roman Catholics, all the Protestant churches, and all the people who do not go to any church—and sweep them all into one big church. They are going to say, “This is the greatest religious revival there has ever been. We are now going to have the millennium of peace; the world is going to be converted. Christianity is finally going to triumph.”

When I first studied these things, 30 years ago, I thought that it referred to all the other churches and the worldlings, but not to the Seventh-day Adventists. However, I have found that Ellen White gives warning after warning to Seventh-day Adventists. Do not think that, because you are a Seventh-day Adventist, you cannot be taken in by spiritualism.

One Form of Spiritualism

Spiritualism has more than one form. There is one form of spiritualism by which Adventists cannot easily be deceived but by which most of the rest of the world can be. Most other churches do not understand what happens to a person when they die. They think that, when you die, you do not really die; there is some part of you that goes on living. If some part of you goes on living, why could not that part of you contact somebody who is still living in the world? Through that misunderstanding of death, the devil will deceive millions and millions of people.

The Bible says that the dead know not anything. (See Ecclesiastes 9:5, 6.) The dead are asleep; they are unconscious. That is how the Bible repeatedly describes death. Jesus spoke of death as a sleep in John 11:11–14. The dead are not up in heaven praising the Lord. “The dead do not praise the Lord, Nor any who go down into silence.” Psalm 115:17. The dead do not know anything, the Psalmist says. Their anger, their hatred, their love, their envy has all perished. Most Christians today do not know that.

So when an apparition comes to them and says, “I am the Virgin Mary, and I have a message for you from the throne of God,” they believe it. But friends, both Roman Catholics and Protestants have acknowledged for many years that Mary died. If Mary died, then she cannot be talking, because when a person dies, they cannot communicate with anybody until after they are resurrected. Job 7:9, 10 says, “. . . He who goes down to the grave does not come up. He shall never return to his house, Nor shall his place know him anymore.” How long will he be in that condition? Job 14:12 tells us: “Man lies down and does not rise. Till the heavens [are] no more, They will not awake Nor be roused from their sleep.” When are the heavens (and the earth) going to pass away? When Jesus comes. “‘Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away.’” Matthew 24:35.

So one way the devil deceives people through spiritualism is by appearing as someone who has died. Incidentally, the Virgin Mary apparitions are encouraging people to keep Sunday, which is directly contrary to the commandments. The message given is contrary to God’s law and the Bible tells us that if a spirit does not teach according to the law and to the testimony, there is no light in it. (See Isaiah 8:20.) Light and darkness.

Fundamental Lie

The foundation of spiritualism is the first lie that the devil told to Eve: “Then the serpent said to the woman [Eve], ‘You will not surely die. For God knows that in the day you eat it [the fruit] your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.’” Genesis 3:4, 5.

But after Eve ate of that fruit, did she have more light? No, she had less light, and her mind was darkened by sin. She with Adam had to leave the garden. That began the experience that the Bible calls the darkness, the blackness, the awfulness of sin.

That was just the first experience where something that was dark was called light. In Isaiah 5:20, it says, “Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; Who put darkness for light.” There is a progression. First evil is called good and then good is called evil. That is the first step.

If you take something that is dark, and you call it light, eventually, your whole definition, your whole frame of reference will get all confused. That is the underlying principle of all spiritualistic teachings. You take something that is dark, and you call it light.

Spiritual Darkness

We need to understand what the Bible says about spiritual darkness and spiritual light. First, let us find out what spiritual darkness is. “The way of the wicked [is] like darkness; They do not know what makes them stumble.” Proverbs 4:19.

What causes wickedness? Sin. What is sin? Sin is the transgression of God’s law. (See 1 John 3:4.) If you are living a life in which you are breaking God’s law, you are in the dark—spiritually. You cannot see. Many people in this world are just going along, living in sin, and they are in the dark. They do not realize that, at the end of the line, they are going to be destroyed. They do not know, because they are in the dark. The devil has told them, “You can keep on sinning, keep on disobeying the law of God, and still live.” That is the basic, fundamental lie of spiritualism. That which is dark is called light.

Spiritual Light

By contrast, what does the Bible say is spiritual light? If you are in the dark, and you want to get out of the dark, then how do you turn on the light? “For the commandment [is] a lamp, and the law a light; Reproofs of instruction [are] the way of life.” Proverbs 6:23. Jesus said, “I have kept My Father’s commandments.” John 15:10. In the life of Jesus we have an example of perfectly keeping God’s law. If we look to Jesus and follow Him, we will be in the light.

The devil says you can break God’s law and live. The Bible says, if you break God’s law, the end result is going to be death. In Psalm 119:105 we read: “Your word [is] a lamp to my feet And a light to my path.” Psalm 119:130 says, “The entrance of Your words gives light; It gives understanding to the simple.” The Bible, God’s word, is spiritual light, and if you follow it, you will be in the light.

Dark Called Light

The devil takes something that is dark and calls it light. People are fooled, and they say, “This is great light!” But it is dark. In Luke 22:53 Jesus said, about the devil, “When I was with you daily in the temple, you did not try to seize Me. But this is your hour, and the power of darkness.” The devil is in charge of all the spiritual darkness. This is the darkness that is going to cover the whole world and the deep darkness that will be upon the people. It is the deception that you can sin and still live.

What does the devil do with this darkness? 2 Corinthians 11:14 says, “And no wonder! For Satan himself transforms himself into an angel of light.” He is really the prince of the power of darkness, but he transforms himself, and he puts a label on himself, and he says, “I am an angel of light.” People today are fooled, just like Eve was fooled. And we read in the book of Revelation that this deception is going to cover the entire world. All nations are going to be deceived by these sorceries.

We have now covered the foundation principles of spiritualism. People like it when you just talk about foundation principles—it does not get too close to home. But friends, that is not good enough for today. We have to understand how these principles of light and darkness get worked out in our lives, in our families, and in our churches. Otherwise we are going to be deceived by spiritualism.

Warnings for Adventists

Almost one-fourth of volume 8 of Testimonies for the Church is warnings to Seventh-day Adventists against spiritualism. The book Ministry of Healing contains over 60 pages of the same warnings. There are other scattered references throughout the writings of Ellen White. Are Seventh-day Adventists in any danger of spiritualism? Evidently. You see, we thought we were not in any danger because of our understanding of the state of the dead. We just assumed we were okay.

But when you are dealing with somebody who is a master at taking darkness and calling it light, unless you know and understand the principles from God’s word, you will be deceived and not even know it.

Come Out of Babylon

What are some of the practical ways that this works out so that people take darkness, and want to be in the dark; they do not want to be in the light? If you want to be in the dark instead of being in the light of God’s word, the devil is influencing your mind, and you probably do not even know it. Revelation 18:1 says, “After these things I saw another angel coming down from heaven, having great authority, and the earth was illuminated . . . .” Is this light or dark? This is light. It is such a great light that the whole world is lighted up.

This angel is telling the world, “You are in the dark, and if you do not get out of there, you are going to burn up.” Verse 4 says, “And I heard another voice from heaven saying, ‘Come out of her [Babylon], my people, lest you share in her sins, and lest you receive of her plagues.” If you are in the dark, you think you can go on sinning and still have eternal life. But the Bible says, if you do not come out of there, if you keep sinning, you are going to go to eternal destruction. If you do not quit, you are going to endure the seven last plagues. This is the light, and this light is going to cover the earth.

The word that is translated angel, the Greek word angelos, means messenger. When God sends an angel from heaven, how is that angel going to speak? It will speak through men, through human messengers. So if you are on the earth in the last days and the Lord chooses to speak through you, what message are you going to give to the people who are in Babylon all over the world? You are going to tell them to come out, because if they stay in Babylon and share in her sins, keep on sinning, they are going to suffer the seven last plagues. The whole world is deceived, according to Revelation 18:23, by this sorcery that you can keep sinning. It is the darkness that is called light.

If somebody starts preaching this message, to come out of Babylon and to keep God’s commandments and quit sinning, are they preaching light or darkness? They are preaching light.

The Devil’s Response

If you were the devil, what would you do about it? The devil wants to keep people in the dark and tell them that the darkness is light, so the devil would want to stop that preaching. He gets representatives in Babylon to complain about the people being brought out of the darkness. He gets them to say, “We want them to stay where they are. We want them to stay in the church where they are. We want them to stay in the darkness.”

Who does the devil use to try to stop the people who are preaching the light and to keep the people in darkness? In New Guinea the people that the devil used were the Seventh-day Adventists! It was a Seventh-day Adventist church organization that came to the street preachers and said, “Stop preaching this.”

Spiritualism in Adventism

When you have somebody preaching the light and somebody else is trying to keep the people in the dark, they are under the control of supernatural forces of evil. And the church organization in New Guinea, which is under the control of the church organization in Australia, which is under the control of the church organization in Maryland, tried to stop the preaching of the light!

When things like that are going on, there is spiritualism right in the Adventist Church, because they are trying to put out the light and turn on the dark. You think that the Seventh-day Adventist Church is not in danger of spiritualism? The whole organization is permeated by the influence of demons that are trying to stop the preaching of the three angels’ messages all over the world. I just gave you an example in New Guinea.

Have no Fellowship

In Ephesians 5:11 we read: “And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather expose [them].” 1 Corinthians 5:11–13 says, “But now I have written to you not to keep company with anyone named a brother [that is a member of the church], who is sexually immoral, or covetous, or an idolater, or a reviler, or a drunkard, or an extortioner—not even to eat with such a person. For what [have] I [to do] with judging those also who are outside? Do you not judge those who are inside? But those who are outside [that is outside the church], God judges. Therefore, [put away from yourselves the evil person].”

The Apostle Paul is telling us that if the Spirit of God is in the church and there is light in the church, to not have any fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness. Expose them if somebody continues in sin. Now we are not talking about somebody who slips and falls into sin and repents and wants to come back to the Lord. We are talking about the person who insists on living a life of sin, like the man in 1 Corin-thians 5 who decided he was going to live with his father’s wife.

He says, “Put those people out of the church.” Do you believe what the Bible says? The Bible says you are not to have fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness in the church. If somebody refuses to keep the law of God, and they are living in open sin, they are to be disfellowshiped. You are not to have fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness.

What does the devil say; what does the devil do? Remember he is the master of darkness, of wickedness, of sin. The wicked are the people who are living in sin, but the devil calls it light. He says, “Just accept everybody together.” He uses the parable of the wheat and the tares to persuade people on this point. (See Matthew 13.) A tare represents somebody whose heart is not right, but on the outside they are living according to the commandments.

The devil uses and misrepresents this parable to try to convince people that they have to let all the sin stay in the church. Do you know what will happen to the church if you allow sin in it? This is what has happened in Adventism, and it is the result of spiritualism. It is spiritualism that teaches people to have the darkness and light mingled all together. If you took half a cup of sewer water and half a cup of pure water and poured it together, would you be willing to drink half of it? Well, that is what spiritualism teaches. Just mingle it all together.

The Bible says, do not have anything to do with it. What will happen if you do? “Your glorying [is] not good. Do you not know that a little leaven leavens the whole lump?” 1 Corinthians 5:6. What will happen to the church? It will ruin the whole church if any open sin is allowed in. It is calling darkness light to allow people living in open sin in the church. It is the result of spiritualism, and it completely wrecks the church.

Do you know what the devil also does, in addition to saying to people to let all the sin in the church? If there is a preacher who says, “I do not believe we should have this sin in the church,” the devil will have all those people who do not want sin in the church disfellowshiped.

That, my friends, in a simple sense is what happened in Hungary. Over 1,000 people were disfellow-shiped in Hungary because there were a few preachers who said, “There is open sin in the leadership of the church here, and it needs to be dealt with.” The response was: “We are not going to deal with that. We are going to deal with you and get you out.” What did they do? They put darkness for light. That is a spiritualistic teaching. That is the way the devil gets control of the professed people of God. It is happening all over the world.

People say, “Just preach love. Do not deal with these things.” When you turn on the light, people want to stay in the dark. It is an evidence that evil spirits are at work in our churches all over the world, because we are putting darkness for light.

In 2 Corinthians 6:14 we read: “Do not be unequally yoked together with unbelievers. For what fellowship has righteousness with lawlessness?” If you put darkness for light, you are just going to be in the dark, and you are going to eternal destruction.

What About You?

The Lord says, “Come out from among them And be separate, says the Lord. Do not touch what is unclean, And I will receive you. I will be a Father to you, And you shall be My sons and daughters, Says the Lord Almighty.” 2 Corinthians 6:17, 18. The world says, “Let us get everyone together. Get all the people who are living in all kinds of sin and let them all come together into one great, big church.” God says, “Get out from that. Righteousness does not have any fellowship with lawlessness. Light does not have any fellowship with darkness. Get out from that and be separate. If you do, you will be my child, and I will be your Father.”

Where are you headed, friend? Are you with the mass of people in this world who are breaking God’s law? It is called light, but it is really darkness, the Bible says. Or are you willing to come out and be separate and say, “Lord, I am going to follow you all the way. Whatever you want me to do, that is what I am going to do. And whatever you do not want me to do, that is what I will not do.” Come out from the darkness. Choose to follow the light. You cannot mix light and darkness. You cannot mix obedience and disobedience. As soon as you mix them, it is disobedience. As soon as you mix it, it is dark.

Do you want to be one of those who is not having fellowship with lawlessness and darkness and unrighteousness? Do you want to say, “Lord, I am willing to be separate. I am willing to be all by myself, if I have to.” There are a lot of God’s people all over the world by themselves right now. But they are acknowledged as God’s children, because they will not join with the wickedness. Do you want to be one of them? It is a big group, but they are mostly separated right now. You will find out, at the end of the world, that it is a huge group.

Do not accept or believe the devil’s lie. Watch. The labels have been switched. Darkness is not light, no matter how many times the devil says it is. God says, “Be separate. Come out, and I will be a Father to you and you will be My child, really, not just by profession, but in reality.”

The spirits of devils are at work in Adventist families and churches today. But Jesus said, “He that follows Me will not stay in darkness, but he will have the light of life.” John 8:12.

To be continued . . .

Adventism and Spiritualism, Part II

For many years we, as Seventh-day Adventists, have thought that we were not susceptible to the dangers of spiritualism because of our understanding from the Bible on the state of the dead. We thought that when apparitions came we would not be deceived by spiritualism, but when we look at Ellen White’s writings, she gives warning after warning to Adventists about being deceived and caught up in spiritualistic teachings. God would not send us all of these warnings if there were no danger.

At the time the majority of these warnings were given, there was a leader in our medical work by the name of Dr. John Harvey Kellogg. It was through a book he wrote, called The Living Temple, that Adventism was introduced to some new ideas about the nature of God. Concerning these new ideas, Ellen White started to write testimony after testimony. If you read these counsels, recorded in Testimonies, vol. 8, 255–335, she quotes one Scripture after another that show God is not like what John Harvey Kellogg was saying. She says that Dr. Kellogg’s ideas about the nature of God would lead into spiritualism.

I had always thought spiritualism was when you had apparitions of the Virgin Mary or of the apostles, or when somebody that was dead came to talk to you. But Ellen White described the new theories about the nature of God as spiritualistic teachings. (See Battle Creek Letters, 103, 104.)

In Part 1 we saw that Satan’s masterpiece of deception, by which he will deceive the whole world, is spiritualism, which involves much more than just apparitions. We will hear, as we draw near the end of time, about all of the different apostles appearing to people, and Ellen White says that when they appear they will teach things contrary to what they wrote in the Bible. At that time, if you know what the Bible says and your confidence is in the Bible, you will be secure. If you do not know what the Bible says, you will be swept off your feet.

We also learned in Part 1 what the big lie is that underlies spiritualism—that you can sin without dying. Another way to state it is that you put darkness in place of light. You call it light, but it is really darkness, and spiritual darkness is that you can live in evil and wickedness and yet have eternal life. As we look around, we see many instances in which darkness is placed for light—and we call the darkness light.

If a priest gets in trouble because he is a pedophile or a homosexual, what happens? Is he removed from the church? No, he is transferred to duties somewhere else. If a minister commits adultery, is his ministerial license withdrawn and his name removed from the church books? No, usually he is transferred to another church in another conference. By these actions, all of the sin is allowed into the church, which destroys the church, and that is exactly what the devil has in mind.

The idea that no matter how bad a sinner someone is, even if they are living in open sin, it is all right, is one of the things going on in the ecumenical movement that has even affected Adventism. Jesus loves you; He died to save you. That is true, but the problem, the darkness is the idea that Jesus will save you while you are living in sin. Jesus will not save you while you are living in sin! If you are living in sin, you are lost, no matter how many times you go to church, no matter how much you pray, no matter how often you study your Bible. If you are living in disobedience to God’s commandments, you are lost. (See The Great Controversy, 461–478.)

Remember, what underlies all spiritualism is that you put darkness in the place of light; you label it light, but it is actually darkness.

Should we be Separate

Who is in the dark? Revelation 16:10 says, “His kingdom [Babylon] was full of darkness.” Babylon includes the churches that rejected the truth during the Dark Ages plus those churches that rejected the warning of the coming judgment and of Christ’s soon coming in the 1840s. (See The Great Controversy, 382, 383, 389.) Should we join Babylon, that is, join the darkness, or should we be separate?

The Bible says, “Do not be unequally yoked together with unbelievers. For what fellowship has righteousness with lawlessness? And what communion has light with darkness?” 2 Corinthians 6:14. What communion is there with light and darkness? There is none! Paul says, Do not have any fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness. (Ephesians 5:11.)

When God first called Saul on the Damascus Road and Jesus appeared to him, one of the very first things Jesus said to him concerned this whole issue of light and darkness and the power of the devil. (See Acts 26.) Paul, in recounting his conversion experience to King Agrippa, told how the Lord met him on the road to Damascus and said, “I will . . . send you, to open their eyes, [in order] to turn [them] from darkness to light, and [from] the power of Satan to God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins and an inheritance among those who are sanctified by faith in Me.” Verses 17, 18.

Are these Gentiles, these heathens who are in the dark, saved? No, they are lost. The ecumenical movement thinks that we will just take in everybody, but they are still lost; they are still in the dark. If they are going to be saved, we have to show them the way so God can turn them from the darkness to the light, from the power of Satan to the power of God. They have to repent and be converted.

Would you conclude that we should be separate from the darkness? Yes, we should be separate. If you join up with the darkness, the devil has control of your mind—you have yielded to spiritualistic powers.

Joining Babylon

When the Seventh-day Adventist hospitals in the Denver, Colorado, metropolitan area were relinquished to the Catholic’s hospital organization several years ago, what were they joining? Were they joining Zion or Babylon? They were joining up with Babylon; they were joining up with darkness. If you join up with darkness, what is going to happen to you? You are going to be in the dark; the powers of devils will control you.

Why do we have an independent Seventh-day Adventist Church in Zaire? Because, the general conference and the unions and divisions over there said that they were going to join with the Sunday-keeping churches. There are almost 70 churches joined together, and the Seventh-day Adventist Church is number 42 of these Sunday-keeping churches. That is Babylon, and we are joining up with it! What does that tell you? That tells you that the devil has gotten control of the minds of leaders in the Seventh-day Adventist Church.

“Oh,” someone may say, “certainly that is not true!” But it has happened. We cannot deny it. I want to show you something encouraging—God foresaw this. God foresaw that at the end of time we, as Seventh-day Adventists, would face a situation where the leaders of the church were going to come under the control of the devil.

“In His Word the Lord declared what He would do for Israel if they would obey His voice. But the leaders of the people yielded to the temptations of Satan, and God could not give them the blessings He designed them to have, because they did not obey His voice but listened to the voice and policy of Lucifer.” Manuscript Releases, vol. 13, 379. Since the leaders of Israel did not obey God’s voice, He could not do for them what He wanted to do. They were listening to the voice and policy of the devil. That is spiritualism! When the devil is talking to you and you are listening, you are under the control of spiritualism.

Mrs. White continues, “This experience will be repeated in the last years of the history of the people of God who have been established by His grace and power.” Ibid. Are we in the last years? Yes, we are. Then it is time for this experience to be repeated.

Who are the people of God in these last days that have been established by His grace and power? It is the Seventh-day Adventist denomination, the Seventh-day Adventist structure. This church, the Seventh-day Adventist world-wide church—the general conference, the divisions, the unions, and the conferences—was established by the grace and power of God. But she says that the same things are going to happen as happened with the leaders of Israel—the leaders are going to listen to the voice and policy of Lucifer. That, friends, is spiritualism.

“Men whom He has greatly honored [men who, in the past, the Holy Spirit has used; people whom we have looked up to because they have led many souls to the Lord; they have preached the Three Angels’ Messages] will in the closing scenes of this earth’s history pattern after ancient Israel.” Ibid. We are in that time.

When Spiritualism Takes Control

When spiritualism takes control in a family or in a church, what happens? We know that, at first, the devil puts darkness for light. But there is a second stage—you take light and you call it darkness. In the first stage you call darkness light, what is sin is accounted as right, but eventually it turns around and what is good is accounted for wrong. Ellen White says that right now in the United States the churches think good of all evil. Eventually, she says, they are going to think evil of all good. (See The Great Controversy, 556, 557.)

How does God try to save these deceived people? He sends them a messenger, and if someone is deceived, God might give them a very plain, pointed message, because God always tells the truth; He does not play around. We are talking about eternal life and eternal death. Paul says whatever reveals it, that is light. (See Ephesians 5.) When people see what is really going on, they see that they are headed straight to hell-fire, and unless they get turned around and start walking according to God’s commandments, they will lose their soul.

Then the devil gets people to call light darkness. God’s messenger, who comes with a message of truth and light, is berated. People are told not to listen to him/her because he/she is a fanatic, and they will be deceived. When God sends a messenger with light, the devil tries to get that message interpreted as darkness, so God has to send a very plain and pointed message.

About God’s messengers today, Ellen White says, “Those who have been thrust out to bear a plain, pointed testimony, in the fear of God to reprove wrong, to labor with all their energies to build up God’s people, and to establish them upon important points of present truth, have too often received censure instead of sympathy and help, while those who, like yourself, have taken a noncommittal position, are thought to be devoted, and to have a mild spirit.” Testimonies, vol. 1, 321.

If someone just gives a smooth, mild message, they are accepted by men, but they are not accepted by God. Mrs. White says: “God does not thus regard them. The forerunner of Christ’s first advent was a very plain-spoken man. He rebuked sin, and called things by their right names.” Ibid. See, if you are calling things by their right names, you call light, light; you call darkness, darkness, and you call sin, sin. If you cover it up, if you say we just have to put up with it and learn how to get along, that is calling things by the wrong names.

She continues, “He laid the ax at the root of the tree. He thus addressed one class of professed converts who came to be baptized of him in Jordan: ‘O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come? Bring forth therefore fruits meet for repentance. . . . And now also the ax is laid unto the root of the trees: therefore every tree which bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down and cast into the fire.’ [Matthew 3:7, 8, 10.]

“In this fearful time, just before Christ is to come the second time, God’s faithful preachers will have to bear a still more pointed testimony than was borne by John the Baptist. A responsible, important work is before them; and those who speak smooth things, God will not acknowledge as His shepherds. A fearful woe is upon them.” Ibid. John the Baptist was talking to the general conference leadership of his day, and he said, “You are a bunch of poisonous snakes and I will not baptize you.” Just preach love, people say, do not rock the boat, but it is better to be in trouble with men than it is to be in trouble with the God of heaven.

It is necessary to separate from the darkness. You cannot be part of it. If you are listening to preaching or teaching and you see that something is being said that is contrary to God’s Word, you better get out of there, because if you keep listening to it you will be deceived and you will not even know it. Ellen White tells us that these people who are deceived by the devil will boast, and you will not find anyone as self-confident as they are about the truth; they are sure that they know the truth and that everything is all right with them, but they are deceived. (See The Spirit of Prophecy, vol. 4, 406; Testimonies, vol. 1, 650.)

Spiritualistic Religion

Spiritualistic religion is going to take over the entire world just before Jesus comes. Except for those that are saved, the whole world will be part of it. All of the churches—Protestant, Roman Catholic, Hindu, Buddhist, and people who do not even go to church—are all going to be part of this great movement. We need to understand some of the characteristics of this religion that is going to take over the world.

Ellen White, talking about spiritualistic religion, wrote: “You may be sure that pure and undefiled religion is not a sensational religion.” Testimonies, vol. 8, 295. What is sensational religion and how does it come into the church? The dictionary defines sensational as “something that tends to arouse a quick, intense interest, curiosity, or emotional reaction.” It really reaches out and grabs you.


One of the first things to do when trying to develop an emotional religion is to change the music within the church services to a music that has stronger beats and more volume. That has come into Adventism, and practically every other denomination, in the last few years.

That is not all. Have you ever heard a preacher who, with almost every sentence, is so emotional, so choked up, he can hardly speak? Even if it is not an emotional sentence he is choked up, and soon people are wiping their eyes, and they can hardly sit still because it is so emotional. That is sensational religion. Ellen White warned our ministers against having anything to do with that kind of preaching or delivery, anything theatrical, anything to arouse emotional reactions in people. (See Testimonies, vol. 5, 301.)

The gospel has the emotion built in. You do not need to try to get people worked up with emotion; the gospel has all the emotion in itself. But an emotional religion, where the people are stirred up by the manner of delivery and by a preacher who is all choked up with emotion, that is an emotional or sensational religion. Anytime you see that in a church, you had better get out, because if you stay there, your emotions are going to be affected and you will be caught up in sensational religion. That is one of the ways the devil gets into the church.

You can introduce the sensation of emotion into the church, and you do not have to have an apparition of the Virgin Mary; you do not have to have séances; you just have to get the people’s emotions worked up and then you have them in a state of mind where they can be influenced to do almost anything. When people’s emotions are all worked up, they will do things they would never do if their minds were calm and if they were thinking rationally, and that is the whole point.

Emotional religion is one of the characteristics of spiritualistic religion. If it comes into your church, you either have to get it out, or you have to get out, because the devil is taking over the church.


Another characteristic of spiritualistic religion destroys the spirituality in the family, and nobody knows that anything is going on. The preacher, the elders, the deacons, and sometimes the spouse does not even know, yet spirituality is being destroyed from within through spiritualism. This is very common, and if it is in your life, you must get it out or it will destroy you. A lot of people think, “Oh, that is just something I am thinking in my mind, and no one else knows.” Ellen White says that the devil knows, because he is the one who put it in your mind. Here is what happens in people’s minds. Ellen White in addressing a man who was a minister, said, “You have been represented to me as being in great peril. Satan is on your track, and at times he has whispered to you pleasing fables and has shown you charming pictures of one whom he represents as a more suitable companion for you than the wife of your youth, the mother of your children.” This man is in contact with the devil, but he does not know it. The devil is whispering pleasing fables to him, and not only that, the devil is giving him some imagination. Here is a married man, and the devil is putting pleasing pictures in his mind about some other woman, and he is imagining things about her. If you asked him if he were a spiritualist, he would tell you he does not have anything to do with it, but he does. He is in contact with the devil, and the devil is putting pictures in his mind.

Continuing on, Ellen White tells how the devil is teaching him: “The enemy of souls has gained much when he can lead the imagination of one of Jehovah’s chosen watchmen to dwell upon the possibilities of association, in the world to come, with some woman whom he loves, and of there raising up a family.” So what was this minister imagining? He thought, “Well, I cannot leave my wife now, but I would like to be with this other woman in heaven.” Ellen White says, “We need no such pleasing pictures. All such views originate in the mind of the tempter.” Medical Ministry, 100, 101. This man was in contact with spiritualism. His Christianity was being destroyed through his imagination. He was taking a head-trip with a woman other than his wife.

“It is presented to me that spiritual fables are taking many captive. Their minds are sensual, and, unless a change comes, this will prove their ruin. To all who are indulging these unholy fancies I would say, Stop; for Christ’s sake, stop right where you are. You are on forbidden ground. Repent, I entreat of you and be converted.” Ibid.

“You are on forbidden ground.” Why? Because in your mind you are indulging in imaginations that are unholy, and if you keep on, it will wreck your marriage; you could easily end up in the divorce court. This is one of the most common ways that divorce occurs. First someone takes a head-trip, and after they do that for a few months, or years, it becomes reality, and Ellen White says that originates with the devil. That is part of spiritualism; you do not have to go to a séance; the devil is putting pictures in your mind. You are in grave danger of being influenced by the devil!

Clean up the Inside

There are other statements in the inspired writings about sensuality and how the devil attempts to gain control of the human mind through spiritualism, but I want to share a very encouraging statement about what we are supposed to do when we are up against something like this. “Minds that have been given up to loose thought need to change. . . . Man’s great danger is in being self-deceived, indulging self-sufficiency, and thus separating from God, the source of his strength. Our natural tendencies, unless corrected by the Holy Spirit of God, have in them the seeds of moral death. [You cannot just go on and do what comes naturally, because your natural tendencies are evil.] Unless we become vitally connected with God, we cannot resist the unhallowed effects of self-love, self-indulgence, and temptation to sin.

“In order to receive help from Christ, we must realize our need.” Testimonies, vol. 8, 315, 316. What is our need? If we are not going to be taken control of by the devil, we must learn to control our mind, our thoughts, and our imaginations. That is how the devil first gets control of people. I am not just talking about sexual passions, but appetite is also involved in control of the mind. “We must have a true knowledge of ourselves. It is only he who knows himself to be a sinner that Christ can save. Only as we see our utter helplessness and renounce all self-trust, shall we lay hold on divine power.

“It is not only at the beginning of the Christian life that this renunciation of self is to be made. At every advance step heavenward it is to be renewed. All our good works are dependent on a power outside of ourselves; therefore there needs to be a continual reaching out of the heart after God, a constant, earnest confession of sin and humbling of the soul before Him. Perils surround us; and we are safe only as we feel our weakness and cling with the grasp of faith to our mighty Deliverer.” Ibid., 316.

We have felt that we are secure because we know the state of the dead, and we do not realize that the devil, through spiritualism, has many other ways beside apparitions to get control of the human mind. The devil is trying to get our minds focused upon sensual gratification so we will lose control of our thoughts. When that happens, he’s got us; we are lost—unless we are converted, and lay hold of the power of Christ and say, Lord, I am absolutely helpless, but I am putting my trust in you, and I pray that you will come into my heart and mind and give me control of my mind again. How often do we have to do this? Ellen White says at every advanced step we have to put our trust in Jesus and ask Him to work this miracle within, because otherwise we are utterly helpless and the devil will take control of the mind. (See The Upward Look, 296.)

Ellen White said there will be people who come up to the day of judgment and it will be revealed that because of the secret thoughts of their hearts they will be lost. (See A Solemn Appeal, 80.) They might have professed to be Christians, but their mind was not purified. The devil had control inside. We are not saved on the outside until we are saved on the inside. Jesus said to the Pharisees, You make the outside clean but the inside is full of all kinds of corruption. Clean the inside up first. (Matthew 23:25, 26.) God wants to clean us up on the inside. When we are clean on the inside so that the devil does not have control of our mind, when we are not under the power of spiritualism, then we will be able to get cleaned up on the outside.

Do you want to be delivered from the power of the devil, the power of darkness? If you call upon Jesus and put your trust in Him, He will deliver you!

Bible Study Guides – Spiritualism, Evil Angels and Their Work

November 1, 2003 – November 7, 2003

Memory Verse

“Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils; Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron.” 1 Timothy 4:1, 2.

Suggested Reading: Early Writings, 262–266; The Great Controversy, 495–498, 551–562.


“None need be deceived by the lying claims of spiritualism. God has given the world sufficient light to enable them to discover the snare. . . . The theory which forms the very foundation of spiritualism is at war with the plainest statements of Scripture. The Bible declares that the dead know not anything, that their thoughts have perished; they have no part in anything that is done under the sun; they know nothing of the joys or sorrows of those who were dearest to them on earth.” The Great Controversy, 556.

1 What falsehood has furnished the foundation for spiritualism? Genesis 3:4.

note: “The deification of the dead has held a prominent place in nearly every system of heathenism, as has also the supposed communion with the dead. The gods were believed to communicate their will to men, and also, when consulted, to give them counsel. Of this character were the famous oracles of Greece and Rome.

“The belief in communion with the dead is still held, even in professedly Christian lands. Under the name of spiritualism the practice of communicating with beings claiming to be the spirits of the departed has become widespread. It is calculated to take hold of the sympathies of those who have laid their loved ones in the grave. Spiritual beings sometimes appear to persons in the form of their deceased friends, and relate incidents connected with their lives and perform acts which they performed while living. In this way they lead men to believe that their dead friends are angels, hovering over them and communicating with them. Those who thus assume to be the spirits of the departed are regarded with a certain idolatry, and with many their word has greater weight than the word of God.” Patriarchs and Prophets, 684, 685.

2 What does the Scripture teach concerning those who are dead? Ecclesiastes 9:5, 6.

note: “A correct understanding of ‘what saith the Scriptures’ in regard to the state of the dead is essential for this time. God’s Word declares that the dead know not anything, their hatred and love have alike perished. We must come to the sure word of prophecy for our authority. Unless we are intelligent in the Scriptures, may we not, when this mighty miracle-working power of Satan is manifested in our world, be deceived and call it the workings of God; for the Word of God declares that, if it were possible, the very elect should be deceived. Unless we are rooted and grounded in the truth, we shall be swept away by Satan’s delusive snares. We must cling to our Bibles. If Satan can make you believe that there are things in the Word of God that are not inspired, he will then be prepared to ensnare your soul. We shall have no assurance, no certainty, at the very time we need to know what is truth.” Review and Herald, December 18, 1888.

3 Then by what agency must the wonders of spiritualism be wrought? Revelation 16:14.

note: “Fearful sights of a supernatural character will soon be revealed in the heavens, in token of the power of miracle-working demons. The spirits of devils will go forth to the kings of the earth and to the whole world, to fasten them in deception, and urge them on to unite with Satan in his last struggle against the government of heaven. By these agencies, rulers and subjects will be alike deceived. Persons will arise pretending to be Christ Himself, and claiming the title and worship which belong to the world’s Redeemer. They will perform wonderful miracles of healing and will profess to have revelations from heaven contradicting the testimony of the Scriptures.” The Great Controversy, 624.

4 In what way do fallen angels receive worship? 1 Corinthians 10:19–21; Psalm 106:37, 38.

note: “The Lord declared to Israel: ‘The soul that turneth after such as have familiar spirits, and after wizards, to go a whoring after them, I will even set My face against that soul, and will cut him off from among his people.’ Leviticus 20:6.

“The ‘familiar spirits’ were not the spirits of the dead, but evil angels, the messengers of Satan. Ancient idolatry, which, as we have seen, comprises both worship of the dead and pretended communion with them, is declared by the Bible to have been demon worship. . . . [1 Corinthians 10:20 and Psalm 106:37, 38 quoted.] In their supposed worship of dead men they were in reality worshiping demons.” Patriarchs and Prophets, 685.

5 What is Satan able to do? 11 Corinthians 11:14, 15.

note: “Satan will work in a most subtle manner to introduce human inventions clothed with angel garments. But the light from the Word is shining amid the moral darkness; and the Bible will never be superseded by miraculous manifestations. The truth must be studied, it must be searched for as hidden treasure. Wonderful illuminations will not be given aside from the Word, or to take the place of it. Cling to the Word, receive the ingrafted Word, which will make men wise unto salvation.” Selected Messages, Book 2, 100.

6 What has the Spirit revealed would take place in the last days? 1 Timothy 4:1, 2.

note: “Let the truths that are the foundation of our faith be kept before the people. Some will depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits and doctrines of devils. They talk science, and the enemy comes in and gives them an abundance of science; but it is not the science of salvation. It is not the science of humility, of consecration, or of the sanctification of the Spirit. We are now to understand what the pillars of our faith are,—the truths that have made us as a people what we are, leading us on step by step.” Review and Herald, May 25, 1905.

7 Against whom are Satan and his angels especially to war? Revelation 12:17. What is the testimony of Jesus? Revelation 19:10.

note: “Those who love and keep the commandments of God are most obnoxious to the synagogue of Satan, and the powers of evil will manifest their hatred toward them to the fullest extent possible. John foresaw the conflict between the remnant church and the power of evil, and said, ‘The dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.’ [Revelation 12:17.]

“The forces of darkness will unite with human agents who have given themselves into the control of Satan, and the same scenes that were exhibited at the trial, rejection, and crucifixion of Christ will be revived. Through yielding to satanic influences, men will be transformed into fiends; and those who were created in the image of God, who were formed to honor and glorify their Creator, will become the habitation of dragons, and Satan will see in an apostate race his masterpiece of evil—men who reflect his own image.” Review and Herald, April 14, 1896.

“Little heed is given to the Bible, and the Lord has given a lesser light to lead men and women to the greater light.” Colporteur Ministry, 125.

“We have the commandments of God and the testimony of Jesus Christ, which is the spirit of prophecy. Priceless gems are to be found in the word of God. Those who search this word should keep the mind clear. Never should they indulge perverted appetite in eating or drinking.” Testimonies to Ministers and Gospel Workers, 114.

8 To what are the fallen angels reserved? Jude 6; 11 Peter 2:4.

note: “The earth looked like a desolate wilderness. Cities and villages, shaken down by the earthquake, lay in heaps. Mountains had been moved out of their places, leaving large caverns. Ragged rocks, thrown out by the sea, or torn out of the earth itself, were scattered all over its surface. Large trees had been uprooted and were strewn over the land. Here is to be the home of Satan with his evil angels for a thousand years.” Maranatha, 313.

9 At the time of judgment of the fallen angels, who will take part? 1 Corinthians 6:2, 3.

note: “During the thousand years between the first and the second resurrection, the judgment of the wicked takes place. . . . At this time the righteous reign as kings and priests unto God. John in the Revelation says: ‘I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them.’ ‘They shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years.’ Revelation 20:4, 6. It is at this time that, as foretold by Paul, ‘the saints shall judge the world.’ 1 Corinthians 6:2. In union with Christ they judge the wicked, comparing their acts with the statute book, the Bible, and deciding every case according to the deeds done in the body. Then the portion which the wicked must suffer is meted out, according to their works; and it is recorded against their names in the book of death.

“Satan also and evil angels are judged by Christ and His people.” The Faith I Live By, 354.

10 What fate awaits the devil and his angels? Matthew 25:41; Revelation 20:7–9.

note: “I entreat that there may be a putting away from the life every action which does not bear the approval of God. We are drawing near to the close of earth’s history; the battle is growing daily more fierce. There is a day appointed when men who have bowed to the mandates of Satan will find themselves the subjects of the wrath of God, when the Judge of all the earth shall pronounce the sentence against Satan and his adherents, ‘Depart from Me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels.’ [Matthew 25:41.]” Loma Linda Messages, 228.

11 What prophecy will then have been fulfilled? Malachi 4:1.

note: “Then are fulfilled the words of the prophet: ‘The indignation of the Lord is upon all nations, and His fury upon all their armies: He hath utterly destroyed them, He hath delivered them to the slaughter.’ Isaiah 34:2. ‘Upon the wicked He shall rain quick burning coals, fire and brimstone, and an horrible tempest: this shall be the portion of their cup.’ Psalm 11:6, margin. Fire comes down from God out of heaven. The earth is broken up. The weapons concealed in its depths are drawn forth. Devouring flames burst from every yawning chasm. The very rocks are on fire. The day has come that ‘shall burn as an oven.’ Malachi 4:1. The elements melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein are burned up. (11 Peter 3:10.) The fire of Tophet is prepared for the king, the chief of rebellion; the pile thereof is deep and large, and ‘the breath of the Lord, like a stream of brimstone, doth kindle it.’ Isaiah 30:33. The earth’s surface seems one molten mass—a vast, seething lake of fire. It is the time of the judgment and perdition of ungodly men—‘the day of the Lord’s vengeance, and the year of recompences for the controversy of Zion.’ Isaiah 34: 8.” The Story of Redemption, 428, 429.

12 What shall not arise the second time? Nahum 1:9.

note: “The plan of salvation, making manifest the justice and love of God, provides an eternal safeguard against defection in unfallen worlds, as well as among those who shall be redeemed by the blood of the Lamb. Our only hope is perfect trust in the blood of Him who can save to the uttermost all that come unto God by Him. The death of Christ on the cross of Calvary is our only hope in this world, and it will be our theme in the world to come. Oh, we do not comprehend the value of the atonement! If we did, we would talk more about it. The gift of God in His beloved Son was the expression of an incomprehensible love. It was the utmost that God could do to preserve the honor of His law, and still save the transgressor. Why should man not study the theme of redemption? It is the greatest subject that can engage the human mind. If men would contemplate the love of Christ, displayed in the cross, their faith would be strengthened to appropriate the merits of His shed blood, and they would be cleansed and saved from sin.” The Signs of the Times, December 30, 1889.

These lessons are adapted from the Sabbath School Lesson Quarterly, Pacific Press Publishing Association, Mountain View, California, April 1912.

Spiritualism, Part I

One thing I have found, as I travel, is that God’s people are the same the world over. They all have a great desire to hasten the day of Jesus’ return. I think this has always been the desire of Seventh-day Adventists. As Adventists came out of the period of the Great Disappointment in 1844, it was a time of struggle for them. With the Millerite movement, there had been a great number of believers looking for the near return of Jesus that was to culminate October 22, 1844. When that day came and Jesus did not return, disappointment took place and thousands fell away. It got to where there were only about 300 believers out of tens of thousands across the land and many more thousands around the world.

James and Ellen White felt the burden to try to gather these believers into some form of unity, because it was not that they were wrong that Jesus was coming; it was the fact that they did not understand the circumstances and the time frame. So the movement began to build, until today there are many Adventists all around the world that are looking forward to Jesus’ Second Coming. We never want to lose sight of that; we want to always have the focus of Jesus ever in our hearts and in our minds, because that is what is going to see us through the times that are yet ahead of us.

The name Seventh-day Adventist declares two facts about our beliefs. First, we observe the seventh day as the day of rest that God outlined in the fourth commandment of Scripture. Second, the other part of the name, Adventist, means that we believe in the Second Coming of Jesus. The interesting part about this is that we have concentrated in these areas almost to the neglect of what has been revealed to us concerning the great controversy between Christ and Satan. We believe in preaching about the Second Coming of Jesus; we believe in preaching about the Sabbath-Sunday issue and how it focuses on the papacy. But, somehow, we do not really understand, as we should, about the great controversy. Indeed, we have a message that is to unfold the work of Satan in this world as well as proclaim the Sabbath and the truth about the Second Coming of Jesus.

Ellen White has written a book entitled The Great Controversy Between Christ and Satan. We have a tendency to read certain portions of the last chapters of this book that deal with what is going to transpire relative to the Sunday law and those kinds of things. We neglect to see the connecting theme that goes all through the book that is centering upon the struggles between Christ and Satan for the souls of men and women in this world.

If we are going to make it through these last days, we must have a better understanding of the great controversy—not just an understanding of the Second Coming, as wonderful and as beautiful as that is; not only an understanding of the Sabbath-Sunday issue, as important as that is; but an understanding of how the devil is attempting to make shipwreck of the Seventh-day Adventist faith. If you do not think that the devil is trying to make shipwreck of the Seventh-day Adventist faith, then you are not fully aware of what is going on in the world today. He is doing everything he can to make shipwreck of our faith.

An Express Warning

The last letters we can chronologically put in the perspective of the writings of the apostle Paul are 1 and 11 Timothy. Timothy was a young preacher who was to carry on when the apostle Paul was no longer able to minister because of the sacrifice of his life in Rome, so Paul wrote some very specific counsel to Timothy.

“Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils.” 1 Timothy 4:1. As we study this text, we want to see if we can identify what it is that Paul is really saying. Often we have a tendency to read a text and, because we have a certain bias of the word or the words that are found there, we do not really dig much deeper, thinking that the meaning is self-evident. Look at this text a little more deeply.

Paul says, “the Spirit.” Who is the Spirit referred to here? It is the Holy Spirit. For what time frame is the Holy Spirit giving this information? It says, “the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times . . . .” When are those times? They are now. If Jesus would have come in the year a.d. 700, this text would have applied then. “Latter times” always applies to just before Jesus’ return. So if we really believe the prophecies, if we really believe the times in which we are living, Jesus is coming very, very soon.

Some Shall Depart

This text, I believe, applies specifically to the time in which we are living. The Spirit said that in the latter times a warning needs to go out. “Some shall depart from the faith.”

In the last ten years, we have seen a lot of things taking place in historic Adventism. We have seen a lot of things taking place in the mainstream denomination of Seventh-day Adventists. We have seen some, much to my disappointment, who have left the faith. Now let me tell you that anytime you see a person leave the faith, it is not just happenstance. It is through the direct working of seducing spirits. This is what causes those kinds of things to take place.

The devil is not just seated in an office somewhere in a large building, answering the phone once in awhile. He is out, the Bible says, “as a roaring lion.” (1 Peter 5:8.) He is on the track of every person who is trying to be faithful to the precepts of Scripture and inspiration.

Paul says that there are going to be some who are going to depart from the faith. They “depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils.” I want to emphasize that something like that happens through the process of seducing spirits. This is why we need to constantly be on guard. The only way that we are going to be able to know is through Inspiration. That is the knowledge that we must have to make it through to the time when Jesus comes.

Persuade to Disobedience

Look at the word seduce. Many times, when we hear this word, we have a tendency to use the application of the second definition in Webster’s dictionary—“to entice to unchastity.” That is usually what comes to our minds, but that is not the first meaning of the word, according to Webster. The first meaning is “to persuade to disobedience or to disloyalty.” That is how it is used in this text. That is how the devil works. The whole purpose of seducing spirits is to get people off the track into disobedience and into disloyalty. This is what they are determined to do.

The Bible says that the Spirit of God—that Person of the Godhead that was given after Jesus returned to heaven—is to guide us into all truth. He is to be our Comforter; He is to be our Helper in all things.

The first verse of 1 Timothy 4 says that, in the last days, the devil is going to work in such a way as to do his utmost to persuade to disobedience and to disloyalty. I have been in ministry for over 30 years, and I have to confess that I have not always preached the great controversy as it centers in this text—the devil doing everything he can to persuade to disloyalty and to disobedience. I have come to understand more fully in these last few years that this, indeed, is a reality and that we need to forewarn God’s people, because I believe to be forewarned is to be forearmed.

Speaketh Expressly

Look even deeper into this text, because we have to receive the impact of what is being said here before it really registers with us as to what is taking place. Paul could have written, “Well, you know, just kind of be aware, people, that in the last days the devil is really going to work.” But he chose some very specific words. He says that “the Spirit speaks expressly.” That needs to grab our attention. He is not just talking in small talk. He is trying to get a point across. “The Spirit speaketh expressly.”

According to Webster, expressly means “to set forth, to make clear the meaning of; directly and distinctly stated, explicit, exact, precise.” The second definition says that “it is the dispatch conveyed by a special messenger.”

Do you ever receive an express package? The delivery person usually comes to the door and knocks on the door to deliver an express package. In reality, this is what the Holy Spirit is doing. He is knocking on the door, and He says, “I have an express message for you. I am speaking expressly.”

If you think that I am repeating myself, I am, because I need to get the message across. Seducing spirits are going to do their utmost to persuade us to disobedience. They will try to draw us away from the doctrines of God to the doctrines of devils. The Spirit gives some very explicit warning to this end.

Every Wind

It may be that you, who are not sitting behind a desk at Steps to Life, find this strange. But many of the phone calls I receive day after day consist of people wanting Steps to Life to endorse some strange doctrine. A large amount of my time is spent responding to people who send in manuscripts, full-published books, cassette tapes, and videos. They say, “Please review these things, and then let us know if you can give some endorsement to them.”

I can tell you that every wind of doctrine is blowing. They are blowing, because the devil has his helpers out across the land in every way causing those winds to blow. But those winds are not yet blowing fully. They are giving little gusts here and there, but they are not blowing in full.

I count it a very serious responsibility on my part to review the things sent to Steps to Life. I read everything, and I try to match it with Inspiration. Sometimes that can be very, very difficult. The reason that it is difficult is because the track of truth lies very close to the track of error. The most successful deception is when there is a great amount of truth coupled with a little bit of error. The Spirit gives some very explicit instruction.

We know that God’s true church and Satan’s counterfeit church have been growing side by side for some 6,000 years. The angels are holding the winds so that they do not blow. Once the angels release those winds, the doctrines of devils are going to go out, and the people from all corners of the earth will be gathered into one of two camps—either in the camp of God or in the camp of the devil.

Two Camps

That is why we urgently work to convey God’s truths to the people, so they will be so grounded that they will not be taken in by the devil’s deceptions. There are two camps—one with truth and love as the impelling force and the other built upon lies and deceit, one upholding God’s government and His Law and the other rebelling against it with a malignant hatred.

Good angels have been sent to Adam and all of his descendents to enlighten, to counsel, and to plead with them to look by faith to their Creator and their Redeemer. Satan’s angels have been sent to ensnare these offspring of Adam with innumerable schemes, so they will despise or neglect or ignore the salvation that is made possible by Jesus Christ. In all of this, God spreads out the issues of the great controversy between Christ and Satan in such a way that every individual is to be enlightened so he can choose whom he is going to serve.

If we read this text carefully, we can see that it is a challenge for us to know what is going on and what is going to take place. If we are going to make it through to the end, we are going to have to know what the issues are. Ellen White makes it very plain that this deals with spiritualism. (See Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary, vol. 7, 951, 952.)

More than Masquerades

I would like to suggest to you that spiritualism is more involved than evil angels masquerading as dead people. It is much more profound than that. It has to do with everything that is devil-inspired. If, indeed, this is the case, then we need to have a firm basis for every decision we make. We need to know with exactness what is going to take place in this area of deception, because this is how God’s Holy Spirit has spoken to us. He has spoken to us expressly to get the point across.

What this text is saying to us is that this is very serious business. It is not something with which to toy. It is not something that we can ignore. The devil has been playing and practicing this game of deception for thousands of years in an effort to try to persuade to disloyalty and to disobedience. That is his whole plan and purpose. We need to have some inside information so we do not get caught up in what the devil is trying to promote. If any-one does get caught up in it, it is because they have not paid clear attention to the counsel God has given.

It is a disappointment to me to hear that the Adventist Book Centers are not carrying Ellen White’s books as they should, because there is no longer a call for them. Supply and demand is what is important. That is the business world. But we are not in a setting where business is to go on as usual. We are here to spread a message.

A Little Con Game

It is easy to be deceived, if we do not have the right information at our fingertips or if we are innocent to circumstances or if we are naive about various issues. A number of years ago, a carnival came to town and set up shop right across the street from where my wife and I lived. We, at that time, were not Christians. Neither of us had been brought up in a Christian home. We were not wicked people, but we did not have a Christian background. So, when the carnival came to town, I went over to it.

I wanted to see all the lights and all the things that were going on. There were many people there. My attention, as I walked through the various booths that were set up, was drawn to one booth that was a con-type gambling game. I will not go into all the details of it, but I got drawn into gambling. The interesting part was that it started out with a dime. Ten cents. Before I knew what was happening, I had $300 sunk into that game.

Forty years ago, $300 was like $1,500 today. Minimum wage back then was $1 per hour. Can you imagine being drawn into some-thing like that? I had taken that money out of our monthly budget, and I lost it. I lost every dime of it. The whole month was yet ahead of me. Do you know what I had to do? I had to go down to the bank and borrow $300, because we did not have any reserve. We were just newly wed. It took me a year to pay back that $300 loan.

Heed the Warning

The interesting thing was that, having lost my money in such a quick, slick con game, I was determined that I was not going to let someone else lose their money in the same way. It was a deception. I knew it was a deception. So I decided that I was going to stand right by that booth and, as people came along, I would tell them what kind of a game it was. I will never forget one lady who came by. She was a waitress, working for $1 an hour, and older than I. She had her whole paycheck with her, which, for a 40-hour week, was a grand total of $32 after taxes. She stood and watched this con artist pour the balls into the little pans that had numbers on the bottoms of them, and as she watched, she was getting into her purse to fish out a dime. I told her, “This is a con game. I just lost $300 here. Do not let him take your money.” I warned her, “Listen to me.” I warned her expressly, “Do not get involved in this kind of con game.” Do you know what? She listened to me and walked on down the fairway. The fellow running the booth called me every conceivable name, but I was determined that I was going to stand there and not let other people get drawn into that con game.

Little did I know that down the fairway and around the corner was another booth exactly like the one where I had taken my stand. It was not too long before I heard a woman’s voice cry, “Oooooooooh! You have taken all of my money.” I could hear it clear across the fairway. So I walked down there, and who do you suppose was there? The very woman whom I had expressly warned. She was crying and weeping that they had taken her whole paycheck. Her whole paycheck for that week was gone. She was raising such a ruckus that a short, fat man came out of a nearby trailer. He tried to talk to this lady, but she would not listen. She was out of control. Finally he reached into his wallet and pulled out a wad of bills. He handed her $32, and told her that it was time for her to leave the grounds. It was really quite pathetic.

I am convinced that there will be many people in the last days who will be just like this woman. They have been given a clear warning, but they have decided, for whatever reason, that they do not want to give heed to the warning. Their hearts have never truly been converted. They may listen to the warning and pass by one of the devil’s traps, only to later disregard the warning. That seems, to a great extent, to be the lot of humanity, but it does not have to be that way—not when the Spirit has given express warning. We need to pay attention. We need to heed the warning.

Two Great Errors

“Through the two great errors, the immortality of the soul and Sunday sacredness, Satan will bring the people under his deceptions. While the former lays the foundation of spiritualism, the latter creates a bond of sympathy with Rome.” The Great Controversy, 588. I do not know which one is worse. They are both bad news—two great errors that will bring people under deception.

The driving force of Seventh-day Adventists is to get the messages of warning to the world. Not everyone is going to listen, but Jesus says, “This gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness.” Matthew 24:14. He does not say the whole world is going to respond, but the message has to be given for a witness.

This is one of the reasons Steps to Life is on Internet radio, because it has the potential of reaching the entire world. This is why we have a television program. This is why we send out containers of literature. It is in an effort to try to get this witness, this warning, out to the world.

To be continued . . .

Pastor Mike Baugher is Associate Speaker for Steps to Life. He may be contacted by e-mail at:, or by telephone at: 316-788-5559.