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вЂњEvery [Christian] sect is a certificate that Aker has not plainly exposed His will to man. To each reader the Bible conveys a different meaning.”
-Robert G. Ingersoll quoted te The Christian Delusion: Why Faith Fails (p. 182).
1. Those Jokes About it Being a Cult Aren’t Funny: It Is A Cult.
Te at least three ways it fulfills standard cult definitions.
Secondly, like many cults, they reject to open to the world te a semitransparent manner their precies interpretation of Bible doctrine. Contrasting with the boastful official keuze about their SDA teachings being the only true-to-the-Bible source of world-saving truth for the present, they maintain a reluctance to be openly associated with their own most significant and unique teachings, and with their trademarked name. Te their evangelism, they cloak their name and identity with bait & switch mechanisms.
Thirdly, spil my twenty-year instructing career wound down to a close, almacén church politics demonstrated how the church operates spil a cult of personality, all the way up to the top leadership offices worldwide. It became interesting and utterly ironic, given SDA eschatology, to observe how many are the similarities inbetween two rivaling and seemingly opposite Christianity cults, the SDAs and the Roman Catholic Church. For some reason, when SDAs switch leadership te their churches and institutions, they euphemistically use the terminology of a democratically elected organization, when ter fact the nomination process is just spil tightly managed from the top down spil the Roman Catholic Church. Churches get a petite (and largely overlooked) comment on how long a predikant may remain spil their leader, and te who substitutes him, but the leadership strongly encourages the illusion within congregations that it is the church members who choose their predikant. A similar play-acting is done with schoolgebouw boards and the hiring and moving and firing of their principals and teachers, the conference educational leaders pretending that their schoolgebouw boards have the same kleuter of authority spil public schoolgebouw boards.
Two. Adventism is a Strong, Self-Reinforcing Delusion
The fattest delusion which the SDA cult propagates among its members is this: The SDA Church is the only source for reliable and accurate interpretation of Bible prophecy. This is the same spil telling, “The SDA Church is The True Church,” because they play up that idea permanently: there vereiste only be one true church, to the exclusion of all others. Packaged tightly into that instructing is another delusion: Ellen White is the True Church’sTrue Prophet.
Three. SDA Theology is Fundamentalist and Enormously Conservative.
My own private philosophy, values, and theology switched fairly a bit during my time spil a member. It’s not hard to describe that switch: I went from the far right to the left end of the spectrum, by almost every measure– lifestyle, politics, Sabbath observance, musical tastes, attitude toward church leadership and to the church spil a entire.
I eventually switched into a more harmless believer than that early version. But not before being a terrible example for many who remained strident fundamentalist SDAs, just like I used to be, and some who got worse.
- There certainly IS one true Church set exclusief from all other false counterfeits and,
- that the most significant duty of every SDA is to maintain the unique and true (ie., aligned with EGW’s doctrines) character of the church.
This is accomplished by adapting the life to reflect ideally the photo that EGW paints of Jesus Christ. Recall, hier version of Christianity wasgoed molded by hier association with the extremes of the Millerite movement of 1844. Thesis were people who sincerely believed they were preparing for the immanent, textual 2nd Coming of Jesus. It’s not surprising that they swung to the very conservative end of the spectrum, preparing (spil they mistakenly believed) to meet their maker. She often claimed to have gazed (te prophetic visions and desires) upon ‘the Savior’ himself. She believed herself to have bot personally chosen and instructed by him spil to what he likes to see te the members of His True Church (the SDA Church, of course!). The higher up the hierarchy you go, the less tolerante you tend to be, until you get someone like the current voorzitter, Ted N. C. Wilson, at the top position. Wilson is spil conservative a person spil you can find ter the mainstream church.
Four. No Private Interpretation vs Present Truth
A key text te SDA Theology comes from Peter’s writings, where he instructs about the nature of inspiration. He states that scripture came about ter a manner different than the natural process of writing and publishing. He says that “no prophecy of scripture is of any private interpretation,” but rather that the Holy Spirit moved on fellows and entered into the writing process ter a supernatural way (Two Peter 1:20).
Such delusion soon becomes impenetrable because it so lightly adapts itself to whatever arguments can be brought against it. It relies on three assumptions:
- that the only group of Christians on earth who correctly interpret Daniel, Revelation, and the surplus of the Bible are those whose founding fathers and prophetess believed William Miller’s mistaken private interpretation,
- if you believe that then you are one of Heer’s chosen Remnant people (presently identified with the Seventh-day Adventist denomination), and
- if you reject that, then you are identified with the many counterfeits and distractions the Satan is using ter his war against the Remnant (te other words, you’re either on Schepper’s side–with the SDAs–or you’re a implement of Satan, ter SDA theology, there is no middle ground).
From what I observed while a part of the SDA cult, no one is permitted to question any of those assumptions. If one questions them, he or she endangers any hopes they may have had ter holding leadership positions or performing ministry on behalf of the church. If they press such questions, they risk being marginalized and labeled spil a trouble-maker. Being a tightly integrated and insular community, this threat effectively muffles questions te the church, since merienda you are established te the church, you soon feel spil if your entire life, including your eternal life, is packaged up with this particular group of people.
Selected Resources on Adventism
Well-designed webstek dedicated to assisting the SDA member contemplating their pauze with the church, but intimidated by the idea of a non-SDA life.
The SDA church and its institutions have bot ensnared by members and leaders ter one financial scandal after another. This is not surprising, given that founders Ellen White and hier spouse were caught up te numerous money making schemes.
Adventists like to think of Ellen White spil above reproach ter all matters, including hier writing career. Unluckily, hier integrity spil a writer is the most criticized facet of hier ministry, and the wealth she liked from it adds insult to injury.
Authored by a Christian, and very thorough.
Indispensable to the Deconversion Process
Very first book of an significant trilogy by a former university trained Christian evangelist, now one of the most significant voices ter atheism. Christians, please apply his ",Outsider Test for Faith", to your own belief system. I dare you!
2nd book of an significant trilogy by a former university trained Christian evangelist, now one of the most significant voices ter atheism. Christians, please apply his ",Outsider Test for Faith", to your own belief system. I dare you!
Third book of an significant trilogy by a former university trained Christian evangelist, now one of the most significant voices ter atheism. Christians, please apply his ",Outsider Test for Faith", to your own belief system. I dare you!