B.A.S.I.C #266

Volume 12, Issue 11

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News From Nigeria

In Nigeria the churches of the NCLC are working together to build and support one another. The following report comes from Alfred Essien, board member of the NCLC:

An evangelism support service was held in Iton, Mkat Enin,on 13th July 2014, aimed at  supporting that congregation to raise a church building.  This was initiated by NCLC Port Harcourt to support the Board of Missions in strengthening the smaller congregations to stand.  [A large sum] was donated by NCLC Port Harcourt to the church in Iton to commence the erection of a place of worship for that congregation on the parcel of land that the church already had.  This gesture is to encourage all to support the work of the CLC ministry here in Nigeria.

SDA Part 6 – William Miller and Ellen White

By Matthew Ude

This is the final section in our series on the SDA church.

History of the SDA Church

The following paragraphs are excerpts taken from “Adventism: Its History And Doctrine” by James A. Aderman. The full paper can be found at

William Miller, a Baptist and former military officer in the War of 1812, quite unintentionally became  the  man  around  whom  the interdenominational adventist movement was to rally. Miller, theologically trained but never licensed to preach, became convinced that Christ’s return to earth was imminent after a thorough study of the Scriptures in which he especially focused on the books of Daniel and Revelation.

[In 1842 William Miller] announced after intensive study of the Scriptures that Jesus would return between March 21,1843 and March 21, 1844.

March 21, 1844, of course, came and went without so much as the sound of one heavenly trumpet. “But the movement seems not to have been greatly shaken by what came to be called the First Disappointment.” That summer Miller reviewed his calculations and at the urgings of his colleagues set the date of the second coming at October 22, 1844.

Ushered in on the heels of October 23, 1844 was the Great (and final) Disappointment.

After this second disappointment, the majority renounced the Adventist faith and returned to their respective churches. Those who stayed, banded together to insulate themselves from the hostile world around them. Together they groped for new explanations.

The explanation which satisfied most of the remaining Adventists was presented to an Adventist conference in Albany, April 29, 1845. “Hiram Edson and O. R. L. Cozier stated that according to Hebrews 8:1,2 the sanctuary spoken of in Daniel 8:13,14 is in heaven and not on the earth, as Miller had assumed. (Thus, although) the computation of the ‘2,300 days’ had been correct, the description of the nature of the event had been false.”  This interpretation was able to temporarily rally the Adventists and reunite them.

In the 1850s the Sabbath-keeping Adventists left New York and headed for the better homesteads available to them in southern Michigan. This separation allowed them to begin anew without the intra-Adventist disputes of the East. Coming to the fore at this time among the Sabbath-keeping Adventists are Joseph Bates, James White, and his renounced wife, Ellen.

Ellen White was to play a very important role in this new movement. In fact, Seventh Day Adventism was shaped and led for the most part by Mrs. Ellen G. White for its first 70 years. Mrs. White is regarded as a prophetess by the Adventists. She authored 53 books and more than 4,500 articles. Much of her writing was based on visions which she received.

From the Website of the SDA Church: http://www.adventist.org/information/history/article/go/0/seventh-day-adventist-church-emerged-from-religious-fervor-of-19th-century-1/

 

A final group—the future leaders of early Seventh-day Adventists—were convinced the date [Miller’s prediction of the return of Christ] was right, but the event was wrong.

Reinvigorated by this possibility, they regrouped and returned to Scripture, determined to discover the truth. What they concluded is that instead of returning to Earth on October 22, Jesus had begun the last phase of his atoning ministry in the heavenly sanctuary.

A young Methodist woman named Ellen Harmon (later White) lent prophetic credibility to this interpretation. Her December 1844 vision of a “straight and narrow path” to heaven confirmed that prophecy had indeed been fulfilled on October 22 and galvanized what would be the denomination’s central focus on Christ.

Analysis

What is clear from the history of the SDA church is that their teachings are largely based on the prophecy and visions or two people, William Miller and Ellen White. The Scriptures give us two standards by which we are to test prophets.

1)  Do their visions and prophecies come true?

when a prophet speaks in the name of the LORD, if the thing does not happen or come to pass, that is the thing which the LORD has not spoken; the prophet has spoken it presumptuously; you shall not be afraid of him. (Deu 18:22 NKJ)

2) Are their teachings in accordance with scripture?

Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world. (1Jo 4:1 NKJ)

These were more fair-minded than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness, and searched the Scriptures daily to find out whether these things were so. (Act 17:11 NKJ)

Now I urge you, brethren, note those who cause divisions and offenses, contrary to the doctrine which you learned, and avoid them. (Rom 16:17 NKJ)

We already looked at the teachings of the SDA church, most of which were taught by Ellen White,  and compared it to scripture. It is clear that these teachings are not in agreement with the Word of God that we have received from the Apostles. For this reason alone we would not accept the teachings of Ellen White, William Miller, or the SDA church, since what they teach is against the teachings of Christ and the apostles.

Furthermore, the visions and prophecies of William Miller and Ellen White did not come true. They were false prophecies from false prophets. It is clear that Jesus did not return in 1844 as Miller predicted not once but twice. The SDA church does indeed admit that Miller was wrong, but they then try to make excuses saying he was only mistaken as to what would happen. They claim his prediction of the day was correct. This is a poor excuse. It is clear that Miller’s prophecy was wrong. Even if we accepted their explanation, Miller made predictions for the Lord’s coming two separate times. Even if he was right one of those times he was wrong the other. His prophecies failed because they were false prophecies.

Ellen White also had many failed prophecies. She predicted that the world would end four separate times. She claimed that those from the North who fought in the Civil War were being deceived. She claimed that the war would not end slavery. It is obvious now that the Civil War did indeed end slavery. She predicted England would declare war on the US, which never happened. These are just a few examples.

All of this and so much more shows to us that the SDA church are not our brothers in Christ. But rather that the church is filled with false teachings and false prophecies. We indeed ought to pray for them and deal with them in love, but also we avoid them as God’s word directs.

Now I urge you, brethren, note those who cause divisions and offenses, contrary to the doctrine which you learned, and avoid them. (Rom 16:17 NKJ)

3 As I urged you when I went into Macedonia– remain in Ephesus that you may charge some that they teach no other doctrine,  4 nor give heed to fables and endless genealogies, which cause disputes rather than godly edification which is in faith. (1Ti 1:3-4 NKJ)

11For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men,  12 teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in the present age,  13 looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ,  14 who gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself His own special people, zealous for good works. (Tit 2:11-14 NKJ)

EXCERPTS FROM REGENERATION IN BAPTISM

Originally written by Dimitri Quast for the Lutheran Free Conference in Germany, August 29-31 2014

II) Baptism in the Old Testament

– Baptism was and is now a covenant of God with the human and not a covenant of the human with God.

– While God in the Old Testament made his covenant with his nation in the circumcision, now the baptism reflects the covenant with his nation in the New Testament

– Though the circumcision of the Jews is a shadow of the baptism in the New Testament, the Bible says in Colossians 2, 8-14: „Beware lest any man spoil you

through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ. For in him dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily. And all of you are complete in him, which is the head of all principality and power: In whom also all of you are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ: Buried with him in baptism, wherein also all of you are risen with him through the faith of the operation of God, who has raised him from the dead. And you, being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, has he quickened together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses; Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross;”

– What does this bible chapter teach us?

  1. Baptism is here called as „the circumcision of Christ“.
  2. In Baptism the sinful body is crucified with Christ and we are buried with him by baptism into death. (Rom. 6)
  3. The circumcision of Christ is made without hands.
  4. In this chapter we can see the link between baptism and the circumcision

– The circumcision was the sign for the membership to the nation of God and was held on the flesh.

– „ And I will establish my covenant between me and you and your seed after you in their generations for an everlasting covenant, to be a God unto you, and to your seed after you.” Genesis 17,7

And I will establish my covenant between me and you and your seed after you in their generations for an everlasting covenant, to be a God unto you, and to your seed after you. And all of you shall circumcise the flesh of your foreskin; and it shall be a token of the covenant between me and you. And he that is eight days old shall be circumcised among you, every male child in your generations, he that is born in the house, or bought with money of any stranger, which is not of your seed. V. 10-12

And the uncircumcised male child whose flesh of his foreskin is not circumcised, that soul shall be cut off from his people; he has broken my covenant. V. 14

– An uncircumcised person had no right to see oneself as a member of Gods nation.

– He had no adoption, no glory, no covenant, no laws, no service of God and no promises. (Rom. 9, 4)

– An uncircumcised man was a heathen and had no contact to God (Eph. 2, 11-12)

– A heathen does not exist in the eyes of God, because he is dead in his sins (Eph. 2, 1-6)

– The first time God gave the circumcision to Abraham, as a seal of the righteousness of the faith.  „And he received the sign of circumcision, a seal of the righteousness of the faith,…“ Rom. 4,11

– It is important to emphasize that Abraham was circumcised because of his faith and his righteousness.

– God asked for the faith of Abraham before and then he got the circumcision as a seal

– But for his offspring it was the other way round. First comes the circumcision and then the faith has to follow.

– All male persons were circumcised on the 8th day after their birth

– After the circumcision the Jews were under the righteousness of their father Abraham,  even without faith, until he became 20 years old. From that day he was responsible for his actions (Numbers 14,29 und 32,11) and faith was demanded by God (Hebrews 3,18-19).

– As an adult person the Jew could always refer to his circumcision. The point is that he did not rely on his own righteousness but on the righteousness of Abraham. The Jew was accepted by God only because of the righteousness of Abraham and his faith and because of the covenant made with Abraham.

Conclusion:

  1. Not the origin from Israel defines if you are an Israeli with full rights or not, but only the circumcision.
  2. Without circumcision each man is dead for God and their soul shall be cut off from his people.
  3. Only Abraham had the testimony from God, that he was right. To all his children the righteousness was imputed.
  4. The imputation was given before the child was able to believe, without any good actions or earnings, just as a present for underage child.

Editor’s Note: When Dimitri Quast refers to the “righteousness of Abraham” he is not referring to any righteousness that Abraham earned on his own, rather he is referring to Christ’s righteousness which was given to Abraham from God through faith. Therefore the righteousness of Abraham and the righteousness of Christ are one and the same thing, coming from Christ through Abraham to the Jews.