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Registered user
Username: Resjudicata

Post Number: 119
Registered: 4-2014
Posted on Monday, June 30, 2014 - 8:18 am:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I have known this guy for 40 years. I dated his daughter while I was still an Adventist, and I left her and Adventism at the same time. And not necessarily for noble, doctrinal reasons either. His wife recently died and he is seriously dating a Methodist woman, so presently he is attending Church twice a week. And claims that he finds her Methodism FAR more attractive than his life-long Adventism. He is likely a 4th Generation Adventist. In response to his wheedling questions about my present beliefs, I sent him the following letter yesterday:

Dear _______;

"Vast councils were held from time to time, in which the dignitaries of the church were convened from all the world. In nearly every council the Sabbath which God had instituted was pressed down a little lower, while the Sunday was correspondingly exalted. Thus the pagan festival came finally to be honored as a divine institution, while the Bible Sabbath was pronounced a relic of Judaism, and its observers were declared to be accursed."

I have read every single word of every single General Christian Church Council, from the First Council of Nicaea till the 7th Council (also at Nicaea). And I can't find one single word in ANY of them discussing the Sabbath OR Sunday, for or against. The council of Laodicea, which is seen by Adventists as the "Devil in the Deep Blue Sea," where the Sabbath was indeed denounced, was a "local Council," which was accepted by some, but not all of the Churches. There were about 30 Bishops in attendance at that Council. It certainly was an anti-Sabbath Council, but it was not a vast one. Its results were NEVER universally accepted (including its far more important Canons that had nothing to do with the Sabbath) And its anti-Sabbath statement was basically a "throw away line" that was FAR from being the most important issue discussed. It was Canon 29, which the Councils always listed in descending order of importance......#29!

"Christians must not judaize by resting on the Sabbath, but must work on that day, rather honouring theLord's Day; and, if they can, resting then asChristians. But if any shall be found to be judaizers, let them be anathema from Christ."

Laodicea simply reduced to writing what the universal and unanimous opinion of ALL of the Church Bishops were at the time, which opinions were identical to the First and Second Century Church Fathers that were direct disciples of the Apostles. Laodicea broke no new ground. St. Ignatius of Antioch is instructive: A direct disciple of both John the Gospel Writer and St. Peter (he took Peter's place as Bishop of Antioch in around 70 AD, and as you know Antioch was the very first Christian "church"), Ignatius harshly denounced Sabbath Keeping as strong evidence that the practitioner had not experienced the Gospel. And he willingly went to the Lions at the Coliseum, begging his supporters not to intervene on his behalf to save his life, in about 108 AD for refusing to denounce Jesus Christ. Here is his condemnation of Sabbath Keeping:

"Be not deceived with strange doctrines, nor with old fables, which are unprofitable. For if we still live according to the Jewish law, we acknowledge that we have not received grace. For the divinest prophets lived according to Christ Jesus."
"If, therefore, those who were brought up in the ancient order of things have come to the possession of a new hope, no longer observing the Sabbath, but living in the observance of the Lord's Day, on which also our life has sprung up again by Him and by His death— whom some deny, by which mystery we have obtained faith, and therefore endure, that we may be found the disciples of Jesus Christ, our only Master"

This is all very very disturbing to me in light of Ellen White's Statements in the GC cited above. There is simply a complete absence of historical support for her rendition of what occurred in the Church Councils. A person like St. Ignatius does not and did not compromise his beliefs for ANY reason. He would have NEVER participated in an Apostasy. Very very disturbing. Especially in light of St. Ignateus's very very close and direct ties with John the Gospel writer and St. Peter, his mentors.

Who do you believe: Ellen White's version of what happened - that Pagan emperor Constantine adopted Sunday Worship in the 300's, versus the commonly-held view of First and Second Century Christian writers vigorously denouncing Sabbath Keeping? You must choose: They simply cannot be harmonized.

What do you think?

(Message edited by Resjudicata on June 30, 2014)
Registered user
Username: Resjudicata

Post Number: 120
Registered: 4-2014
Posted on Tuesday, July 01, 2014 - 6:30 am:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

So he wrote back, accepting the facts as stated in the previous letter, but demanded to know why Adventism is growing furiously and many of the "mainstream" denominations are in terminal decline. In his opinion Ellen White was correct when she announced that the Protestant denominations that refused to accept "the 1844 message" simply sowed the seeds for their own destruction and ceased forevermore to be a moral influence in the United States. My response follows:


I think we can agree as a starting point that your position in your last letter is summed up in the following statement from the "Great Controversy:"

"In the month of February of the same year [1844], Professor Finney of Oberlin College said: "We have had the fact before our minds, that, in general, the Protestant churches of our country, as such, were either apathetic or hostile to nearly all the moral reforms of the age. There are partial exceptions, yet not enough to render the fact otherwise than general."

I think we must agree that in 1844, the primary "moral reform of the age" hands-down was the anti-slavery movement. Here is a description of events concurrent with the 1844 "Great Disappointment:"

"Lewis Tappan set up the American and Foreign Anti-Slavery Society and at the same time the Liberty Party was founded, nominating James Birney as President in 1840 and 1844. Most abolitionists initially hoped that one of the two old political parties, the Democrats or the Whigs, would take a stronger stand against slavery. In 1848 former members of both parties who were opposed to slavery set up the Free Soil Party, which sent two senators and 14 representatives to Congress. In 1854 the Party formed an alliance with Whigs opposed to the extension of slavery into Kansas. The resulting Republican Party achieved success when its candidate, Abraham Lincoln, was elected President in 1860."

So arguably, 1844 was something of a political watershed in the anti-slavery movement. Where was the energy coming from that ignited this mass movement? The answer is obvious:

"The historian Richard Hofstadter wrote in 1948 that ‘Abolitionism was a religious movement, emerging from the ferment of evangelical Protestantism, psychologically akin to other reforms – women’s rights, temperance, and pacifism – which agitated the spirits of the Northern middle classes during the three decades before the Civil War. Its philosophy was essentially a theology, its technique similar to the techniques of revivalism, its agencies the church congregations of the towns’. The profusion of anti-slavery and abolitionist books, newspapers, pamphlets, reports, printed speeches and other publications which appeared in those three decades were an essential feature of this evangelical movement."

So the very Protestant Churches that White was harshly-denouncing for being "either apathetic or hostile to nearly all the moral reforms of the age," were in fact the vanguard of the anti-slavery movement in 1844, which nobody can seriously dispute was THE "moral reform" of the age!

I cite history that once again flatly-contradicts EGW'S pronouncements to make a point. I do not wish to beat a dead horse. I earlier wrote to you about the Church Councils and now the Protestant anti-slavery movement to express a disturbing and clear trend. Right now I am batting a solid "Zero" in finding credible historical support for virtually ANY factoid published in the "Great Controversy" that I have closely analyzed using credible academic sources. And yet that book has enormous continuing influence on Adventist thinking. There was a recent mass-distribution of the Book.

No doubt "mainstream Protestantism" IS in fact in terminal decline today, including the Methodist Church that you are presently so happy attending. But they are NOT in decline because they rejected the 1844 "message." The Anti-Slavery movement was plainly Protestantism's high-water mark of moral reform and the epitome of the "social gospel." I have my own theories on why Protestantism is declining, but that analysis remains for a future letter.

If Adventism is founded on the "Great Controversy worldview," and by my estimate at least 70 percent of the "facts" recited therein are likely demonstrably false, then where does that leave Adventism? Can you continue to morally add your support to an organization that is provably based on historical falsehoods for many, if not most of its central doctrines? And yet you express delight that Methodists in general are far more loving, compassionate and live obviously more moral and selfless lives than Adventists. Based on my contacts with ordinary Methodists over the years, I can assure you that your perception is correct. And I am not a Methodist and have never attended one of their services.

__________, for all-too-long, researchers have attacked EGW for the plagiarism issue, which alone raises some profoundly disturbing questions about her moral authority. But the flat-out historical and factual dishonesty rampant in the GC is far more disturbing in my mind, and discussed far too infrequently. I would appreciate your response to these issues to keep this conversation lively.
Registered user
Username: Nowisee

Post Number: 1457
Registered: 5-2009
Posted on Tuesday, July 01, 2014 - 4:38 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

THANK YOU for these posts! Such clear & concise info.

As to growing "furiously" (is that true?)…what does that prove? The weeds in our yard grow "furiously", but they're still weeds. Numbers & growth don't necessarily prove truth or there wouldn't be organizations such as scientology, Mormonism, JW, etc.

I have a personal project to sniff out as many GCs as I can find at garage sales,thrift stores, used book sales, etc, & tear them up. I have found SO many in our community. I despise the name of the condensed GC that they've been using: "The Great Hope". Talk about false advertising! The IJ is the most hopeless teaching of all!
Registered user
Username: Resjudicata

Post Number: 121
Registered: 4-2014
Posted on Wednesday, July 02, 2014 - 6:30 am:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Dear _____;

It is time to stop beating around the bush and be honest with each other about our biases. I have them, so do you. Our basic worldviews could not be further apart.

I am a product of secular universities who lost his faith and his way for many years. But the relentless agnosticism of the universities did not cause that. Adventism did. There are covens of virulent ex-Adventist atheism all over the internet.

But I left Adventism for all the wrong reasons. You were there: You know I was up to “no good.” Unfortunately, it took me 33 years to re-exam Adventism’s fundamental doctrines in the light of pitiless and objective analysis, more as a therapeutic psychological exercise which eventually led me to finally grasp the fundamental and obvious Truth of Christianity. Here is the nub our arguments in succinct language:

Christianity is “Resurrection-centric.” Anything good (or bad) in it flows directly from the earth-shattering, truly revolutionary impact of that central event in human history. Virtually EVERY fundamental Christian doctrine sends its roots deep into the Resurrection as its basis. Anything that deflected from the obsessive mono-focus on that event was hurriedly-abandoned by the Apostles. The Sabbath is just one of the more minor issues that were quickly discarded in light of St. Paul’s missionary work with the Pagan Gentiles. There was no time to waste on trivialities like the Sabbath. It was at best a tedious distraction and a minor irritant. At worse, it was viewed as evidence of a lack of Grace. Finally, it was viewed as a heresy, and not because the Pope said so. The Resurrection is probably the easiest event to prove in history. There is simply NOTHING about the behavior of the Apostles that is congruent with any other explanation: 500 people saw the Resurrected Christ. They were instantly transformed from craven cowards into crazy-brave heroes, ready and eager to discard their mortal coil and accept horrific torture because they knew what they knew and saw what they saw. Normal human beings have rarely behaved with the same reckless disregard for preserving their own lives the way that ordinary Early Christians did. Humans are bound and controlled by an instinct for preserving their own lives. Early Christians had an instinct to get the news out about the Resurrection. And at the First Council of Nicaea, the appalling evidence of absolutely abandoning the usual life instinct was on vivid display: “The Marked Ones” were breathtaking visual reminders of the power of that Resurrection. Bishops who had somehow managed to withstand the most horrific torture in history stood still while the Mighty Roman Empire buckled and then reverently bowed at their feet. You can disagree about what the Resurrection means, and Christianity does frequently disagree doctrinally with itself. But you cannot seriously disagree that the Resurrection happened. Not when Particle Physicists are reexamining the Shroud of Turin and declaring that it is an Event Horizon and a massive scientific breakthrough, and a peak through a tear in the fabric of the Universe.

Adventism is Sabbath-centric. Everything revolves around “restoring” the “lost” preeminence of that day. Ultimately, even history is distorted, denied and dissembled in service of this doctrine. I can’t even IMAGINE what it must be like to work in an Adventist University and have one ounce of self-respect, given what everyone knows about the historically-fraudulent “facts” in The Great Controversy. How can this be? How can these professors continue to teach things that they must know are nothing more than elaborate fairy tales? Give me virtually ANY paragraph in any of EGW’s books that purport to be “historical,” and I can likely demonstrate several levels of deliberate deception. What is remarkable is that Andrews University professor Dr. Samuele Bacchiochi managed to do some of that, and yet still managed to keep his job!

How do we know what we know? That is the fundamental question of any inquiry, whether scientific or historical or theological. No doubt we bring our biases when we do so, but notwithstanding our biases we must insist on bringing our honesty too, which indicates open-mindedness to new evidence. Maybe it is easier for me, given that I have had absolutely no contact whatsoever with the inside of an Adventist college classroom. I DO appreciate the difficulty that your own history presents. I can sense your struggle, but never forget some of the answers are painfully obvious. You do not need to subject yourself to the hideous monstrosity of a grizzly Capital Murder trial to appreciate that there MUST be something greater out there than mere law. And make no mistake about it; the Sabbath is purely an artificial construct of law. The Sabbath is cautious, orderly and legal; the Resurrection is in full dirty-necked rebellion against all known laws of the Universe and flies in the face of all known human instincts. It throws caution to the winds.

And I have always been naturally a rebel, confronting authority my whole life. Not once in my life have I defended the powers that be. I have defended murderers, rapists and thieves, the doomed and the damned. And I have prayed on some mornings for a timely head-on collision so I did not have to appear in court and defend the monster from the Sinaloa Cartel. You hang out with the Mexican Drug Cartels long enough and you will automatically cease believing in anything earthly. You will be primed for a violent internal revolution. The Sabbath is not that revolution. The Resurrection is the Revolution that I was looking for my entire life.

Let us throw caution to the winds, and join the revolution of all revolutions, said the Apostles. Let us heedlessly and recklessly toss aside our mere lives and our mere comfort. The world needs saving immediately, and it cannot be more urgent. Once upon a time, 500 people’s lives were shattered and upended when they personally witnessed God’s Hot Fusion Plasma. They were never the same after that, and neither am I. I have peaked through that same tear in the fabric of the universe…..

And now I am blinded by the Son.
Registered user
Username: Foofighter

Post Number: 335
Registered: 7-2005
Posted on Wednesday, July 02, 2014 - 1:14 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Wow, Res...that really says it all in an extremely powerful way.

I just spent several days with a good friend who is a Sevie. Frustrating, to say the least. I love her dearly, she has a good heart, to be sure. But the dedication to Adventism/Sabbath is sometimes more than I can take!
Registered user
Username: Resjudicata

Post Number: 125
Registered: 4-2014
Posted on Wednesday, July 02, 2014 - 2:08 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)


I try to imagine myself as someone who once upon a time actually walked into an Adventist college classroom, and sat down and listened! It is hard for me to be empathetic in this situation. To me, that is such an utterly foreign and alien way of thinking! I may as well try to fantasize about landing on and living in a Martian colony.

And trying to conceive of how that could have shaped me, or must have shaped him. Sometimes my imagination is not nearly vivid enough for the task.

I try to imagine just one possible interaction: "Today, in Adventist Theology Class 303, we turn to page 210 in the Great Controversy......"

I can't do it! Lord have mercy! Maybe there is someone that experienced attending an Adventist college that might chime in and give me a clue. Because I am totally clueless (Did they serve Vejalinks in the college Cafeteria? Were there pictures of Ellen White on the back wall of the chapel? Were you disciplined for kissing a woman?)

Inquiring minds want to know.
Registered user
Username: Resjudicata

Post Number: 127
Registered: 4-2014
Posted on Thursday, July 03, 2014 - 7:42 am:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)


As a matter of fact, I DO assert that "The Great Controversy" is a historical comic book that DOES dishonestly blow the Sabbath wildly out of all proportion and context. And it carefully and dishonestly limits its scathing venom to Roman Catholicism as the “Devil in the Deep Blue Sea” as the one and only enemy of the Sabbath. As I hinted earlier, the Great Controversy is “Sabbath-Centric” and simultaneously viciously anti-Catholic in its twisted and false worldview. I will now demonstrate that it is also gravely dishonest in its complete omission of ANY discussion of Protestant anti-Sabbatarianism.

History is clear cut: Perhaps no single person in history was as harshly-anti-Sabbatarian as Martin Luther:

“Luther criticized the Sabbatarian Carlstadt and certain Anabaptists for their Judiazing of Sunday: "that if Sunday were anywhere made holy merely for the day's sake or its observance set on a Jewish foundation, 'then I order you to walk on it, to ride on it, to dance on it, to feast on it, to do anything that shall remove this encroachment on Christian Liberty' "

See also:


Yet the “Great Controversy” waxes rhapsodic in the praise it heaps on the great Reformer, carefully leaving unmentioned his views on Sabbath Keeping. And on a purely objective basis, Luther has certainly well-earned effusive praise. Yet, the Protestant reformers were in many cases as willing, if not MORE willing to persecute and execute the Sabbatarian Anabaptists as was the Papacy:

“To the Catholics as heretics, to the evangelicals as dangerous opponent of the new church institution, the Anabaptists were a thorn in the flesh everywhere.” “In Germany the Protestant rulers exceeded even the Catholics in severity. From A.D. 1529 most cruel penal laws were issued, and the Reformer. . .did not only show their approval, but could witness the execution of these laws unconcerned, and with petty satisfaction.”
Luther, for example, urged that no Baptist be tolerated in the country, and demanded each subject to hand over the ‘hedge preacher’ to the magistrate.” The author of the preface to the “History of the Martyrs of Christ” (A.D. 1610) says of them:--
“Some were rent and torn to pieces, some burned to ashes with poweder, some roasted on pillars; others were hanged on trees, killed by the sword, or drowned; many were executed with a gag in their mouth to prevent them from talking.”
“Like sheep and lambs, they were led to slaughter by the score. Bibles were strictly prohibited in many places; in others, even burned. Many were stared, and many were tormented in various ways before they died; others, too young for execution, were lashed; many had to suffer for years in dungeons and towers; others, after having holes burned through their cheeks were dismissed. And those who escaped all this torture, often had to hide in caves and rocks, in the woods, and under the ground, searched by dogs and sergeants.”
“They sang praises to their God while being led to execution; virgins adorned themselves for this occasion as for a feast.”
“ Others have smiled at the water destined to be their grave, displaying manly bravery, because they had on the armor of God, or they exhorted the people to repentance, before firmly marching up to the stake.”
“Being assured of the better things they looked upon the things of this world as a shadow. . .And so they had more patience in their sufferings than did their enemies in torment them.”

To willfully excluse ANY discussion of this history of the well-documented anti-Sabbatarian of the early Protestant Reformers is an appallingly dishonest literary tactic. It betrays an utterly un-hinged hatred of Catholicism. To blame the Pope entirely for Christianity’s repudiation of Sabbath Keeping, when history could not be clearer that the Protestant reformers joined the Papacy in anti-Sabbatarianism seems about as dishonest as you can get. There is more. Here’s White’s fanciful description of the Waldenses:

"In lands beyond the jurisdiction of Rome there existed for many centuries bodies of Christians who remained almost wholly free from papal corruption. They were surrounded by heathenism and in the lapse of ages were affected by its errors; but they continued to regard the Bible as the only rule of faith and adhered to many of its truths. These Christians believed in the perpetuity of the law of God and observed the Sabbath of the fourth commandment....But of those who resisted the encroachments of the papal power, the Waldenses stood foremost....The faith which for centuries was held and taught by the Waldensian Christians was in marked contrast to the false doctrines put forth from Rome....Through ages of darkness and apostasy there were Waldenses who denied the supremacy of Rome, who rejected image worship as idolatry, and who kept the true Sabbath...Here, for a thousand years, witnesses for the truth maintained the ancient faith." (The Great Controversy, "The Waldenses."

Nothing could be further from the truth. If anything, the loyalty of the Waldensians to Rome’s theological basics could not have been stronger:

“The movement did not seek to alter Catholic dogma and was not intended to be a separatist church. The bishops at first would have found nothing about which to object had not the Waldenses assumed the right to preach. It was unauthorized preaching in public places that aroused suspicion and led the Archbishop of Lyons to attempt to stop them.”
“While Waldo and his followers had no doctrinal quarrel with Rome, their defiance of episcopal prohibitions against preaching led in 1184 to their condemnation by a synod of bishops meeting in Verona. Much to their dismay, the Waldenses were excluded from the Church and declared to be heretics.
In 1207 Durand of Huesca abandoned the Waldenses and returned to the Catholic Church. He asked Pope Innocent III to authorize an order of "Catholic Poor," a move that would be completely submissive to the hierarchy. St. Dominic Guzman had assisted Durand in recruiting small bands of Waldenses who agreed to return to Rome. Later, clerical opposition to the Catholic Poor [i.e. Waldensians] hindered their work badly, and in 1254 Pope Innocent IV directed the Poor Catholics to merge with the Augustinian Hermits.
It is clear that the Waldenses were far less heretical than the Cathars and agreed, at least in the early years of their history, with the Roman Catholic Church on most points of doctrine. This is to be expected, since Waldo hoped to gain papal approval for his movement.
On theology proper that is, the doctrine of God, Waldo and his disciples upheld the orthodox Catholic belief in the Trinity and the two natures of Christ. The Waldenses did not imbibe Cathar dualism. The pope, in fact, commended Waldo for opposing the Cathars…..Waldo's confession of faith is quite specific in its affirmation of loyalty to traditional Catholicism…….”
In a statement of faith submitted to the bishop of Albano, Peter Waldo affirmed his belief in transubstantiation, prayers for the dead, and infant baptism. The famed Baptist historian A.H. Newman drew the only conclusion warranted by the evidence.
"Waldo and his early followers had more in common with...Roman Catholicism than with any evangelical party. His views of life and doctrine were scarcely in advance of many earnest Catholics of the time."

And White’s “fanciful” depiction of the Waldensians as Sabbath Keepers has been debunked by the Waldensians officially:

We do not have to guess at what the Waldensians really believed. They spelled it out quite explicitly. Unfortunately for White, her hoped-for Sabbatarians made NO mention of the Sabbath in their detailed statements of belief:

Whether you like the Catholics or not, it was not Waldensian Sabbath-Keeping that raised the ire of Rome, but unauthorized preaching, which the medieval church had a monopoly on. When the Waldensians took the time to spell out their fundamental beliefs in some detail, Sabbath Keeping as a doctrine is notable by its complete absence.

In summary, for White to blame Roman Catholicism for Christianity's anti-Sabbatarianism, and to carefully leave out the identical role of the Protestant Reformers is just appalling. To top it off, her description of the Waldensians appears to have been just made up out of thin air.

How can you live with this? My next philippic will demonstrate the utter impossibility of a National Sunday Law, which White predicted in 1844 was just right around the corner.

(Message edited by Resjudicata on July 03, 2014)
Registered user
Username: Resjudicata

Post Number: 128
Registered: 4-2014
Posted on Thursday, July 03, 2014 - 8:34 am:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)


Do Adventists have the foggiest idea how impossible it would be to pass a Constitutional Amendment that would allow the National Sunday Law they've been panicked about for fully 150 years?

The freakish concept of a National Sunday Law is ingenious: No other proposed law that I can imagine could possibly violate the both "Free Exercise Clause" and the "Establishment Clause" of the First Amendment in one fell swoop. But a National Sunday Law would. And that is a tall order, given that the two Clauses are commonly interpreted this way: The Free Exercise Clause requires what the Establishment Clause prohibits, and vice versa. These clauses – guaranteeing both Religious Freedom and Freedom from State meddling - have long been interpreted by the US Supreme Courts as "Fundamental Constitutional Rights" that require the application of "Strict Scrutiny" analysis. Any governmental action that infringes on a "Fundamental Constitutional Right" is presumed to be invalid, unless the Government can demonstrate a "Compelling Interest" and the law is narrowly construed to have the "Least possible impact" on the Fundamental Constitutional Right. It is usually said that the Government’s burden is almost insurmountable to demonstrate any such law’s validity. Plainly, a National Sunday Law could survive neither "prong" of the Strict Scrutiny analysis of either the Free Exercise Clause or the Establishment Clause. A Sunday Law would be dead the second it hit any local Federal Court, which would quickly issue an injunction against its enforcement.

Any governmental entity passing such an absurd law would end up with a massive attorney fee bill, because they would be required to pay the attorney fees of the opponents of the law under 42 USC Section 1983. And make no mistake, the government would lose. It is a solid case.

Additionally, a National Sunday Law would blatantly violate the "Free Exercise Restoration Act," a Federal Statute that was passed in the 1990s in the wake of Smith v. Oregon. Finally, a Sunday law would almost certainly violate the individual state Constitutions of all 50 states, which are often interpreted by State Supreme Courts to give MORE religious freedom than does the Federal Constitution. The trend since EGW's death has been a LOT more constitutional protection of religious freedom and to tolerate much less governmental meddling or support for it, and a LOT less possibility of a Sunday Law. State Courts are the SECOND insurmountable barrier thrown up by the Court system. Like the Federal Court isn’t formidable enough all by itself.
The chance of the law surviving state or federal court review is practically zero. Whew! Now it gets far more difficult. Now we turn to the legislative branch of government. If I were being paid to lobby for a Sunday Law, on any legislative level, I would preemptively fire myself, rather than deteriorate to the point of eventually shooting myself, after making myself the laughingstock of the Nation, and the butt of jokes for Jay Leno.

Do you know why nobody is lobbying, the city, local, state or federal level for a Sunday Law? Because there is nobody, and I mean NOBODY that wants such a law. LEAST of all the Catholic Church. In fact, it has been said that if a National Sunday Law were proposed, it is likely that the US Bishops Conference would be the first and most fierce opponent!

What has the Catholic Church, EGW's feared antichrist, done over the last 150 years to enact the feared "Mark of the Beast" Sunday law in the United States?


In fact, less than nothing. In fact, it is such a non-issue, the Catholic Bishops have never even thought of such a ridiculous idea, let alone proposed it for consideration, let alone seriously deliberated it, let alone even mildly announcing they are for it. Let alone lobbying for it. In fact, the Bishops have LOST power lately. They have put their credibility and necks on the line, fighting gay marriage, and are losing badly....not just in Congress and the courts and state legislatures, but among a majority of Catholics! When they met as an organization last year in Baltimore, no discussion whatsoever was made regarding a Sunday Law. In fact, the Catholic Bishops didn't even have a say over pro-abortion President Obama giving a commencement speech at Catholic Notre Dame University. If they have no say over a commencement speaker that is publicly opposed to one of their most cherished positions, what chance do they have of getting Obama to agree to a National Sunday Law?


The next series of insurmountable minor problems: Nobody is lobbying for a Sunday law, particularly the Catholic Bishops, either in the state or federal legislative bodies. And even if they did, it would be highly unlikely to be set for a committee hearing, let alone a committee vote, let alone a committee vote sending it to the floors for vote, let alone passed by a majority of the Federal and State lower houses, let alone passed by the Senates both state and federal, and let alone survive a veto by the state or federal executive power. Can you imagine the filibuster that Rand Paul would give such a ludicrous law? Prohibition and Sunday laws went hand in hand in the late 1800s and early 1900s, being advocated by the same blue nose moralists. Prohibition was "successful," while Sunday Laws.....not so much. Prohibition, enacted by a Constitutional Amendment, lasted just 13 years before it was another Constitutional Amendment. It was really that bad. It was an epic stinker of the first rank. Sunday laws have far less chance of successful passage, even if they could later somehow magically survive the vast hurdles as outlined previously. Upon being passed, it is highly unlikely a National Sunday Law would survive as long as Prohibition. People are FAR less religiously-inclined than they were in EGW's day.

Additionally, Constitutional Amendments - even of issues that have some popular support, and National Sunday Laws have exactly zero popular support - have become an obsolete method to change laws. Assuming that you could surmount all of the above basically insurmountable hurdles, we next turn to the virtually inconceivable task of enacting the required Constitutional Amendment, to overrule the First Amendment's Establishment Clause and Free Exercise Clause, which are wildly popular and enjoy vast majorities of intense support throughout the US. For any politician to announce support for such an absurd idea would likely invite widespread violent insurrection in the United States, and have to be controlled by the deployment of every state's National Guard.

The tortured history of the Twenty-seventh Amendment, the newest Constitutional Amendment to have been enacted is instructive. The 27th Amendment used a howitzer to kill a flea. It prohibits any law that increases or decreases the salary of members of Congress from taking effect until the start of the next set of terms of office for Representatives. It is the most recent amendment to the United States Constitution.
It was submitted to the states for ratification in 1789 and was adopted, over 200 years later, in 1992. 22 years ago. In other words, this Amendment was probably one of THE most promising Constitutional Amendments around the time EGW started sowing unjustified panic about National Sunday Laws - in the early 1900's at the latest. The states had been mulling the 27th Amendment over for more than 100 years at that point, and by EGW's death, had been deliberating on it for 130 years. The old saw about the "wheels of justice turn slowly, but they grind finely" is particularly apropos with the tortured task of getting a Constitutional Amendment passed.

The failure of the Equal Rights Amendment is even more instructive: In 1923 (about 8 years after EGW's death), it was introduced in the Congress for the first time. In 1972, it finally passed both houses of Congress and went to the state legislatures for ratification. The ERA failed to receive the requisite number of ratifications (38) in the states before the final deadline mandated by Congress of June 30, 1982, and so it was not adopted. That Amendment took only 60 or so years ...... to lose. And that was at an unheard of, unbelievably blistering pace! Furthermore, the Republican Party included support of the ERA in its platform beginning in 1940, renewing the plank every four years until 1980. It was favored by Republican Presidents Eisenhower, Nixon, and Ford, and by every Democratic President in between. And it still failed!
Should I mention that the proposed Equal Rights Amendment and the 27th Amendment were WILDLY popular, compared to repealing the Free Exercise Clause and the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment?
No National Sunday Law is as far along as Prohibition. In fact, the very idea that one could pass is mocked and ridiculed as a paranoid and preposterous "conspiracy theory." The linked article concludes that "Any attempt today at introducing such a bill in the U.S. Congress for a national law would be laughed at........Belief that such a law is inevitably coming is based on a peculiar interpretation of Bible prophecy and fears dating from the late 1800s that have ossified into a persistent conspiracy theory, not on any real legislative priorities in Congress."

Where's Jay Leno when we need him?

Finally, the article mockingly mentions and savagely ridicules a book being circulated, perhaps self-published, by a Jan Marcussen, a Seventh Day Adventist ordained minister.
By being the originator and proponent of such an obviously preposterous paranoid conspiracy theory, all Ellen White managed to do was convincingly demonstrate, beyond a reasonable doubt, in a particularly risible manner, that she had no clue about how the American Government works.
The chances of a National Sunday Law and another stab at National Prohibition are approximately equal. They are equally possible at exactly zero.
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Posted on Thursday, July 03, 2014 - 9:29 am:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)


Thank-you again for your posts! Your research and energy to share what
you have learned, here on this Forum, is of inestimable value!

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Posted on Thursday, July 03, 2014 - 11:01 am:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)


Never in my wildest imagination did I ever DREAM that I would be writing in defense of the Papacy. But "The Great Controversy's" ultra-dishonest rendition of the Sabbath issue virtually compels such a stance. It's almost unbelievable when you think about it:

- Eastern Orthodoxy split with Roman Catholicism in 1054, and bitterly hated the Papacy some 500 years before Martin Luther did. And yet Orthodoxy is adamant that Sunday worship commenced on the dawn of Resurrection Morning and Easter was celebrated on the one-year anniversary of the Great Event. Does the fact that Roman Catholicism also worships on Sunday bother Eastern Orthodoxy? Not one bit. I just found some extremely interesting arguments that the word "Easter" was correctly translated in the King James translation of the Book of Acts, indicating that Easter commemoration began immediately after the Resurrection and had nothing to do with Paganism:

Have you ever heard of an Adventist rebutting this fact?

- Protestantism split with Catholicism in the 1500s and were squarely presented with the Seventh-Day Sabbatarian arguments. Luther, Calvin and Zwingli ALL rejected the Seventh Day Sabbath argument, even though all three were in a pitched war with Catholicism, yet worshiped side by side on Sunday with their Papist enemies!

And yet, BOTH of these compelling factual scenarios are left COMPLETELY unmentioned in "The Great Controversy." Just these two scenarios alone completely refute the GC Papal Conspiracy Theory of Sunday worship, let alone that the Waldensians absolutely never kept the Sabbath and retained most, if not all of the fundamental Roman Catholic doctrines.....infant baptism, transubstantiation, the Papacy and on and on.

Our lives in Adventism were based totally on lies. The Papacy had absolutely NOTHING to do with Sunday worship. All of the research I have done demonstrates that Christian Sunday worship predated the Papacy and Roman Catholicism by many hundreds of years, and that the Papacy's strongest enemies - Protestantism and Eastern Orthodoxy - rejected Seventh Day Sabbath Keeping, even while they were in a virtual war with Catholicism.
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To the contrary, “The Great Controversy’s” depiction of William Tyndale is actually one of the most dishonest and disturbing in the whole book. Remember, Ellen White was attempting to build the case that there were lonely, heroic Christians throughout the ages resisting the sinister Papal Conspiracy to force devout Christians to worship on Sunday against their will. I will begin with Tyndale’s own very clearly-expressed ideas about the Sabbath:

“William Tyndale, the first generation English Reformer, Bible translator, and ultimately martyr for Christ, responded to More in his 1531 book, “An Answer unto Sir Thomas More’s Dialogue.” Regarding the Sabbath-Sunday change, Tyndale does not assert an exegetical argument for the change of day. In fact, he adopts a position so radical it would bar him from ministry and even membership in many modern day “confessional” Reformed congregations. Tyndale writes:
“And as for the Sabbath, a great matter, we be lords over the Sabbath; and may yet change it into the Monday, or any other day, as we see need; or may make every tenth day holy day only, if we see a cause why. We may make two every week, if it were expedient and one not enough to teach the people. Neither was there any cause to change it from the Saturday, than to put difference between us and the Jews; and lest we should become servants unto the day, after their superstition. Neither needed we any holy day at all, if the people might be taught without it.”

That’s about as anti- Seventh Day Sabbatarian as you can possibly get! And White makes NO mention of Tyndale’s extremely strong denunciation of the validity of the 7th Day Sabbath. Here are some select quotes from The Great Controversy, which dishonestly imply that Tyndale’s most fierce battles were with the Papists and the Roman Church:

“But again the violence of the papists forced him to flee. All England seemed closed against him, and he resolved to seek shelter in Germany.”
“Tyndale was betrayed into the hands of his enemies, and at one time suffered imprisonment for many months. He finally witnessed for his faith by a martyr's death; but the weapons which he prepared have enabled other soldiers to do battle through all the centuries even to our time.”
“To the papist claim that the church had given the Bible, and the church alone could explain it, Tyndale responded: "Do you know who taught the eagles to find their prey? Well, that same God teaches His hungry children to find their Father in His word. Far from having given us the Scriptures, it is you who have hidden them from us; it is you who burn those who teach them, and if you could, you would burn the Scriptures themselves."--D'Aubigne, History of the Reformation of the Sixteenth Century, b. 18, ch. 4.”
Notwithstanding the English authorities had guarded their ports with the strictest vigilance, the word of God was in various ways secretly conveyed to London and thence circulated throughout the country. The papists attempted to suppress the truth, but in vain. The bishop of Durham at one time bought of a bookseller who was a friend of Tyndale his whole stock of Bibles, for the purpose of destroying them, supposing that this would greatly hinder the work. But, on the contrary, the money thus furnished, purchased material for a new and better edition, which, but for this, could not have been published. When Tyndale was afterward made a prisoner, his liberty was offered him on condition that he would reveal the names of those who had helped him meet the expense of printing his Bibles. He replied that the bishop of Durham had done more than any other person; for by paying a large price for the books left on hand, he had enabled him to go on with good courage.

These quotes are horrifyingly dishonest. Why? Tyndale did the vast majority of his translation and ministries AFTER England had already undergone its separation from Roman Catholicism, and had installed King Henry Vlll as head of the English Church in place of the Papacy! Tyndale’s persecution and eventual execution had NOTHING to do with the Papacy! In fact, it appears Tyndale was at first instrumental in the break between England and the Papacy:

“When a copy ofThe Obedience of a Christian Man fell into the hands ofHenry VIII, the king found the rationale to break the Church in England from the Roman Catholic Church in 1534.”

It was actually Tyndale’s public opposition to King Henry Vlll’s divorce that caused his eventual downfall and death:

“In 1530, Tyndale wrote The Practyse of Prelates, opposingHenry VIII's planned divorce from Catherine of Aragon, in favour of Anne Boleyn, on the grounds that it was unscriptural and was a plot by Cardinal Wolsey to get Henry entangled in the papal courts of Pope Clement VII.[24] The king's wrath was aimed at Tyndale: Henry asked the Emperor Charles V to have the writer apprehended and returned to England under the terms of the Treaty of Cambrai….”

That hardly supports White’s tale of Tyndale fighting a lonely battle for truth against the sinister Papists! He had the support of the King of England and provided the rationale for the break between England and the Papacy. And then he didn’t have the support of the King, but his downfall had nothing to do with the Papists or his translation of the New Testament, but with his public opposition to the King’s divorce. And the King’s divorce ultimately and ironically had the unintended effect of igniting the English Protestant Reformation. Ironies abound in this twisted and sordid tale, in contrast to the smooth, linear, simple and dishonest rendition of “The Great Controversy.” I must emphasize that NOWHERE in this section of the GC is the phrase “Church of England” mentioned one single time, and yet it was the predominant church during Tyndale’s translation of the Bible AND the Church that was BOTH his main supporter AND enemy. That support alternating randomly on the year and day of the week, apparently. The reader is strongly misled into thinking the Papacy is in charge of the resistance to Tyndale: It was actually the Church of England that was his most relentless enemy.

“In 1536 he was convicted of heresy and executed by strangulation, after which his body was burnt at the stake. His dying request that the King of England's eyes would be opened seemed to find its fulfillment just two years later with Henry's authorization of The Great Bible for the Church of England—which was largely Tyndale's own work.
Within four years, at the same king's behest, four English translations of the Bible were published in England,[a]including Henry's official Great Bible. All were based on Tyndale's work.”

Got that? Tyndale opposed the King’s Divorce. The King had him convicted of heresy and executed. That same King then officially authorized the Tyndale Bible for the Church of England. Finally, four other translations were ordered by the King, all of which were based on Tyndale’s Bible.

Can a any single tale possibly be this convoluted? It turns out the King of England was both Tyndale’s best friend and worst enemy and Tyndale provided the rationale for the King’s break from Rome AND the authorized New Testament used by the Church of England. And where was the evil Pope during all of these twists and turns and intrigues? Apparently being powerless to stop the breakaway of the Church of England. Or to stop the King from getting a divorce. Or to stop Tyndale’s translation from being completed and disseminated widely. Finally, the Pope was powerless to stop Tyndale’s translation from being adopted as the Authorized Bible of the Church of England. I am getting the panicked feeling here that the Pope was at best a extremely-minor bit player in all of these events. In fact, as an alleged sinister force pulling out the stops to squelch Tyndale and his translation, the Papacy turned out to be laughably powerless. And Tyndale didn’t just support the Pope’s power to institute Sunday worship. No! Tyndale argued Christianity had the power to institute Monday worship if it wanted. Or Tuesday or Thursday worship. Nor no day of worship at all, if it so chose.

And here’s probably White’s most dishonest paragraph in her depiction of Tyndale, and quite possibly the most dishonest paragraph in the Great Controversy:

“Notwithstanding the English authorities had guarded their ports with the strictest vigilance, the word of God was in various ways secretly conveyed to London and thence circulated throughout the country. The papists attempted to suppress the truth, but in vain. The bishop of Durham at one time bought of a bookseller who was a friend of Tyndale his whole stock of Bibles, for the purpose of destroying them, supposing that this would greatly hinder the work.”

Here are some interesting factoids:

- The “English Authorities” were by then overseen by a Protestant King.

- Notice how the sentence “The papists attempted to suppress the truth, but in vain” is skillfully slipped in between “The English Authorities” and “The Bishop of Durham?” It makes you think that both “the English Authorities” and “the Bishop” are “papists,” doesn’t it? NEITHER WERE!

- Here’s the skinny on “The Bishop of Durham,” who it turns out was instrumental in the schism between King Henry Vlll and Rome:

“Tunstall's acquiescence in this and the other measures which completed the severance between the English church and Rome was of material service to Henry VIII, for, after the death of Warham and Fisher, Tunstall was beyond doubt the most widely respected of English bishops. “

So this Bad Boy Bishop was instrumental in fanning the flames of the English Protestant Reformation and became an Anglican Bishop of some note. AND he was opposed to Tyndale, and sought to buy out all of Tyndale's translations to make them unavailable. In neither event, was this Bishop operating at the behest of the Papacy.

______, I am now exhausted. This one page out of “The Great Controversy” has exhausted me as I ran down the most obvious lies told about Tyndale and his time. I am quite sure I likely overlooked some major whoppers, and probably with further examination, I could have shown that each of the lies that I found were probably tied to other lies. Or were in themselves multi-level lies. But the long and short of it is, Tyndale was no supporter of the Sabbath. His main enemies…..AND friends were the English Protestants. And the Church of Rome had almost nothing to do, for or against, with any of his activities. Ultimately, it was the protestant King of England that had him executed, but that had nothing to do with his Bible translation. And that same King ultimately was responsible for the wide posthumous dissemination of Tyndale’s translations.

It seems the Papacy was virtually nowhere in sight during all of this.
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Posted on Thursday, July 03, 2014 - 4:48 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)


Your posts above have reminded me of the letter to Timothy from Paul.
In it are instructions to Timothy~1Timothy chapter 4.

Verse (1)~ "The Spirit clearly says that in later times some will abandon the faith and follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons. (2)Such teachings come through hypocritical liars, whose consciences have been seared as with a hot iron. (3) They forbid people to marry and order them to abstain from certain foods, which God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and who know truth. (4) For everything God created is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with thanksgiving, because it is consecrated by the word of God and prayer....(7) Have nothing to do with godless myths and old wives tale; rather, train yourself to be godly....(15) Be diligent in these matters; give yourself wholly to them, so that everyone may see your progress. [especially the last verse(16)] Watch your life and "doctrine" closely.
Persevere in them, because if you do, you will save both yourself and your hearers."

NIV 2005 Translation.

Those that have ears, let them hear!

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Posted on Thursday, July 03, 2014 - 5:30 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)


I am pondering how to be as tactful as I humanly can as I deconstruct one of Adventism’s most potent prophetic interpretations, the “1260 day” prophecy of the Book of Daniel that Adventism claims began in 538 and ended in 1798. Supposedly this is the period of “Papal Supremacy” forecast in Daniel 12. Dr. Samuele Bacchiochi has pretty much demolished both the starting date and ending date of Adventism’s version of events, declaring that nothing happened of any particular importance in either 538 OR 1798. Since this is not the main thrust of my argument, I will simply paste the link to his analysis here and then proceed with my main argument:

And I’ll start with some amazingly juicy and revealing quotes from “The Great Controversy” as a set-up and foil for what my central analysis will be later:

“In the sixth century the papacy had become firmly established. Its seat of power was fixed in the imperial city, and the bishop of Rome was declared to be the head over the entire church. Paganism had given place to the papacy. The dragon had given to the beast "his power, and his seat, and great authority." Revelation 13:2. And now began the 1260 years of papal oppression foretold in the prophecies of Daniel and the Revelation. Daniel 7:25; Revelation 13:5-7. (See Appendix.) Christians were forced to choose either to yield their integrity and accept the papal ceremonies and worship, or to wear away their lives in dungeons or suffer death by the rack, the fagot, or the headsman's ax. Now were fulfilled the words of Jesus: "Ye shall be betrayed both by parents, and brethren, and kinsfolks, and friends; and some of you shall they cause to be put to death. And ye shall be hated of all men for My name's sake." Luke 21:16, 17. Persecution opened upon the faithful with greater fury than ever before,”
“The accession of the Roman Church to power marked the beginning of the Dark Ages. As her power increased, the darkness deepened. Faith was transferred from Christ, the true foundation, to the pope of Rome. Instead of trusting in the Son of God for forgiveness of sins and for eternal salvation, the people looked to the pope, and to the priests and prelates to whom he delegated authority. They were taught that the pope was their earthly mediator and that none could approach God except through him; and, further, that he stood in the place of God to them and was therefore to be implicitly obeyed. A deviation from his requirements was sufficient cause for the severest punishment to be visited upon the bodies and souls of the offenders. Thus the minds of the people were turned away from God to fallible, erring, and cruel men, nay, more, to the prince of darkness himself, who exercised his power through them. Sin was disguised in a garb of sanctity. When the Scriptures are suppressed, and man comes to regard himself as supreme, we need look only for fraud, deception, and debasing iniquity. With the elevation of human laws and traditions was manifest the corruption that ever results from setting aside the law of God.”
“Notwithstanding that vice prevailed, even among the leaders of the Roman Church, her influence seemed steadily to increase. About the close of the eighth century, papists put forth the claim that in the first ages of the church the bishops of Rome had possessed the same spiritual power which they now assumed. To establish this claim, some means must be employed to give it a show of authority; and this was readily suggested by the father of lies. Ancient writings were forged by monks. Decrees of councils before unheard of were discovered, establishing the universal supremacy of the pope from the earliest times. And a church that had rejected the truth greedily accepted these deceptions.”
“Popery had become the world's despot. Kings and emperors bowed to the decrees of the Roman pontiff. The destinies of men, both for time and for eternity, seemed under his control. For hundreds of years the doctrines of Rome had been extensively and implicitly received, its rites reverently performed, its festivals generally observed. Its clergy were honored and liberally sustained. Never since has the Roman Church attained to greater dignity, magnificence, or power.”

In lands beyond the jurisdiction of Rome there existed for many centuries bodies of Christians who remained almost wholly free from papal corruption. They were surrounded by heathenism and in the lapse of ages were affected by its errors; but they continued to regard the Bible as the only rule of faith and adhered to many of its truths. These Christians believed in the perpetuity of the law of God and observed the Sabbath of the fourth commandment. Churches that held to this faith and practice existed in Central Africa and among the Armenians of Asia.

As a preliminary accusation, I would note that both Ellen White and Samuele Bacchiochi seem to be fellow sufferers of a common Adventist Ailment. I call it “Papal Derangement Syndrome.” (hereinafter “PDS”). They both interpret history from a Papal-centric and Sabbath-Centric point of views. The Papacy is the Devil in the Deep Blue Sea…..BAD! And the Sabbath is the Most Exalted of All Things…….GOOD! I have earlier laid out the argument that there were BAD Protestants, BAD Waldensians, and some Church Councils that made no declarations one way or another on the Sabbath. The Protestants are given a pass for their extraordinarily-venomous anti-Sabbatarianism rants and deadly persecutions of Sabbatarians, which are simply never mentioned by either White or Bacchiochi. And the Church Councils are harshly lambasted, even though the First Seven Major Church Councils said not one single word, for or against the Sabbath OR Sunday Worship! Understanding the role of this Papal-Centric/Sabbath Centric worldview in Adventist writings is critical to comprehending the vast, overwhelming dishonesty this approach causes, which I will set forth and analyze next. PDS means simply wearing blinders to any evil being caused by something other than the Papacy.

The following cannot be overstressed: Neither White in “The Great Controversy,” nor Bacchiochi in his 1977 Book “From Sabbath to Sunday” make a single mention of the vast Eastern Orthodox Church, 2,000 years old, and presently 300 million members strong. Bacchiochi’s masterpiece can be found here: This is an absolutely fatal flaw in both of their presentations for many different reasons, but which I have boiled down to just 3 major ones:

A). Eastern Orthodoxy (“EO”) has adamantly insisted that Sunday worship commenced on the Dawn of Resurrection morning, and Easter celebrations began on the first one-year Anniversary of the Resurrection. EO has flatly rejected any claim that Roman Catholicism OR the Pope introduced Sunday worship or Easter Celebration. EO’s assertion were presented fully in the 1888 version of Dudley Canright’s “Seventh Day Adventism Renounced,” and the Seventh Day Adventist Church has never acknowledged that assertion, let alone addressed that assertion, let alone disputed that assertion, let alone refuted that assertion. It stands proud and completely un-rebutted in Adventist Literature. The text of Eastern Orthodoxy’s assertion can be found here:, Appendix IV – Page 326 – “Eastern Orthodox Origin of Sunday Observance.”

B). Both Bacchiochi and White completely IGNORE Eastern Orthodoxy’s 2,000-year heated-rejection of “Papal Supremacy,” and EO’S main contention that the Papacy has NEVER achieved supremacy, nor has EO ever recognized it as having any such a thing. Most of Eastern Orthodoxy’s arguments against the concept of Papal Supremacy are succinctly outlined here:

and here: (Chapter 8).

C). For the sake of this next argument, it will be assumed - notwithstanding the adamant contrary protestations of EO - that the Papacy achieved “Supremacy” some time during Early Church History. And will also assumed that sometime later during this period of “Supremacy” the Papacy LOST that Supremacy, in accordance with the Daniel 12 prophecy. Here’s the horror: Both White and Bacchiochi completely ignore the 1054 Schism between Roman Catholicism and Eastern Orthodoxy as the date when the Papacy obviously received an unambiguous “Deadly Wound,” in spite of the fact that was the date and year when Christianity literally broke in two. If there was any sort of "Papal Supremacy" before that date, there certainly wasn't the mere wisp of an argument they continued to have it afterword. In writing, that has been easily accessible to any historian, EO unequivocally-rejected “Papal Supremacy” in 1054. This is discussed more fully here:

Incidentally, the Protestant Reformation is also not given credit as the “Deadly Wound” inflicting the Papacy, nor is any analysis presented why it is NOT a candidate for such an award. No, White simply announced that 1798 - when the Pope was briefly captured and detained by Napoleon - as the date of the “Deadly Wound,” even though its effect on the Papacy was extremely temporary and minor. 1798 was a tiny speed bump compared to 1054 and the Protestant Reformation. And Bacchiochi simply disputes that anything happened on 1798, without really explaining how his argument does not demolish White’s claim of being a Prophet.

__________, Your “IT.” And I don’t envy you, given that your task is to explain how both White and Bacchiochi could legitimately completely-ignore and never mention a 300 million member denomination that is 2,000 years old. And how they both could completely ignore EO's adamant contention that Sunday Worship and Easter were both instituted within a year of the Resurrection, and the Papacy and Rome had nothing to do with either. And how they could ignore its adamant and very public contention that Papal Supremacy has NEVER been achieved. And finally, neither White nor Bacchiochi have ever explained why the 1054 Schism and the Protestant Reformation could not be the “Deadly Wound” of Daniel 12.

I do not envy you in your task.
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There is NO validity to the 1798 date. Yeah, a Pope was temporarily arrested and briefly held by Napolean's forces. So what? In the long run, as two of my sources argue below, the Papacy came out of the crisis FAR more prestigious and powerful than when the crisis started.

Here's Napolean's own words describing the utter futility of capturing the Pope in 1798 and all of the rest of his efforts at turning Europe into a bastion of atheism:

"Indeed, through the determined holiness, fortitude, and prudence of Pius VII, the Church survived the French Revolution and Napoleonic Wars, and the would-be master of Europe came in the end to lament, "Alexander the great declared himself the son of Jupiter. And in my time I have met a priest more powerful than I."
"As for his former prisoner, Pius made a triumphant return to Rome on May 24, 1814 and was hailed across Europe. The relieved pope issued a declaration to all of the Catholics who had suffered under Napoleon:

We have shed tears of grief in our prison, first for the Church committed to our care, because we knew of her needs though we were powerless to help her, and then for the people subject to our authority, because the cry of their tribulations reached us without being able to bring them comfort . . . The pride of the madman who set himself up as equal of the Most High has been humbled."
"As Pius enjoyed heightened prestige and international favor, he moved quickly to secure the restoration of the Papal States. In 1814, Pius reinstituted the Society of Jesus and gave it the task of helping to rebuild the shattered Church in Europe."

"On July 7, 1815, following the Battle of Waterloo, the Roman Pontiff returned to Rome. He gave thanks to God and Our Lady and on September 15, instituted the Feast of ‘Our Lady Help of Catholics’ for May 24. On May 5, 1821, Napoleon Bonaparte died whilst exiled on the Island of Saint Helen in the South Atlantic Ocean, probably a victim of arsenic poisoning and betrayed by his own officers."
And it turns out ANOTHER Pope was arrested and held for three years in 1808. Why isn't THAT the year of the "Deadly Wound?":

A few observations:

- Adventism tacitly cheers on Napoleon in his full-throated attempt to wipe out European Christianity, and replace it with the officially-enforced atheism of the French Revolution. That is known as irony.

- The worst of the so-called "Deadly Wound" inflicted in 1798 lasted perhaps three years:

"The Concordat of 1801 is a reflection of an agreement between Napoleon Bonaparte and Pope Pius VII that reaffirmed the Roman Catholic Church as the majority church of France and restored some of its civil status."

- By 1815, the Papacy was fully-restored and then some:
"At the Congress of Vienna (1814–1815) the Papal States were largely restored. The Jesuits were restored; the Index and the Inquisition were revived."

- By contrast, Napoleon's downfall was severe, ruinous and complete - it appears that Napoleon actually received the "Deadly Wound" in this confrontation with the Papacy when he was exiled to die on St. Helena island! So humbled and wretched was Napoleon that the Pope magnanimously took pity on him:

"In a final remark on the situation, the pope had his secretary compose a letter to the British government asking for better treatment of the exiled emperor at Saint Helena. One of the final lines of the note stated, “He can no longer be a danger to anybody. We would not wish him to become a cause for remorse.”

Not only did nothing happen in 1798 of any lasting importance, but certainly the Papacy did NOT suffer a "Deadly Wound:" Napoleon did. When researching this note, I was shocked by the number of obviously Adventist websites proclaiming the importance of 1798, whereas non-Adventist sites discussing the confrontation between the Papacy and Napoleon are few and far between.

History is crystal clear: In no way did the Papacy received a "Deadly Wound" in 1798. Ellen White simply made up the importance of the year and event, in a Hail Mary effort to mangle the 1260-Day prophecy into something unique to Adventism. Adventism's treatment of this event and year is outright historical fraud.
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Posted on Friday, July 04, 2014 - 4:21 am:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)


Needless to say, the Chapter on Zwingli is horrifying misleading in a most extraordinarily ironic way. Read it carefully and then ponder my analysis that follows:

Two things about Zwingli:

- As is getting monotonous by now, like virtually ALL of the Protestant Reformers highly-lauded in "The Great Controversy," Zwingli was a fierce opponent of the Seventh Day Sabbath. And at the same time, a relentless foe of the Papacy. As the evidence builds here, ask yourself one thing: How can anyone claim that Sunday Worship is solely an invention of the Pope? Here is a clip that quotes Zwingli at length regarding his ardent opposition to "The Jewish Sabbath" and also illustrates my next point:

- Zwingli advocated for and achieved a "National Sunday Law" that was second to none! Church attendance on Sunday was mandatory in Zwingli's Switzerland, and violators of that law were hauled before a Judge and duly punished as criminals.

Why oh why are these facts unmentioned in the Great Controversy? And if mandatory Sunday Worship is the "Mark of the Beast," then why isn't Zwingli lambasted as the founder of that movement? Not the Pope......but Zwingli had the most stringent Sunday worship laws in history!

Aren't you just aghast?
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I will next turn to White's utterly-dishonest treatment of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church and its very brief and historically-insignificant brush with Roman Catholicism. I will rebut in point by point fashion, with the Great Controversy version of reality in brackets for your viewing pleasure. GC's elaborate fairy tale regarding Ethiopian Christianity is found here:

Here we go:

[Others suffered in similar manner for their fidelity to the fourth commandment. ….. An edict was issued forbidding the observance of the Sabbath under the severest penalties.]

This so-called edict was issued to liquidate the Jews of Ethiopia, who were one of the primary internal enemies of the Emperor, and which predated the Emperor's desperate, superficial, transparent and cynical "conversion" to Roman Catholicism. The Emperor's "conversion" to Catholicism couldn't have been more cynically-motivated: it was a last ditch desperate effort to hoodwink the Papacy and Catholic Portugal into send soldiers to bolster the Emperor's sagging fortunes in the Civil War. It didn't work. Not only did neither Rome or Portugal offer sufficient support to keep him in power, but he was very quickly forced to abdicate the throne. Whereupon his Roman Catholic allies were unceremoniously thrown out of the country on their ear. It is hard to imagine the skill it would take to unite Judaism and Christianity in such an all-out effort to depose a hated Emperor, but this incredibly-unpopular and oafish King brilliantly succeeded in accomplishing the nearly impossible:

[The history of the churches of Ethiopia and Abyssinia is especially significant. Amid the gloom of the Dark Ages, the Christians of Central Africa were lost sight of and forgotten by the world, and for many centuries they enjoyed freedom in the exercise of their faith.]

That statement is utter dishonest rubbish! The reason the Ethiopian Church was supposedly "lost sight of" "by the world," was because of the first major schism in the early Christian Church as a result of the Council of Chalcedon. And of course, "the world" as defined by Ellen White means "the Papacy," or maybe Western Europe. I can assure you that the some 100 million fellow members of the Oriental Orthodox Communion obviously never "forgot" about their 38 million strong brethren in Ethiopia:

The Council of Chalcedon (which White weirdly never acknowledges) prompted the first major schism of Christianity based on a dispute over the nature of Christ. It had absolutely nothing to do with the Sabbath issue. The Sabbath was never discussed at that Council. And the Oriental Orthodox faction of Christianity openly rejected Pope Leo's proposed definition of the Nature of Christ. Excuse me? Whatever happened to the idea of monolithic Papal Supremacy cruelly-ruling the world with absolute power that White constantly insists upon? Here, the Ethiopian Church and all of the rest of the Oriental Orthodox raised a big, defiant middle finger to the Pope, and broke communion with the rest of Christianity.

[But at last Rome learned of their existence, and the emperor of Abyssinia was soon beguiled into an acknowledgment of the pope as the vicar of Christ. Other concessions followed.]

What a bizarre and dishonest statement! Rome "learned of their existence" because the Ethiopian Emperor took great pains to cynically-enlist the Papacy in his side of the civil war. He even cynically converted to Catholicism in order to earn the assistance of Papal and Portuguese armies. Not that Rome had ever actually "forgot" about the Ethiopian Church, which today boasts of 38 million members all over the world:

[But papal tyranny soon became a yoke so galling that the Abyssinians determined to break it from their necks. After a terrible struggle the Romanists were banished from their dominions, and the ancient faith was restored. The churches rejoiced in their freedom, and they never forgot the lesson they had learned concerning the deception, the fanaticism, and the despotic power of Rome. Within their solitary realm they were content to remain, unknown to the rest of Christendom.]

Actually it wasn’t so “terrible” of a struggle at all. The vast majority of Ethiopians resolutely refused to convert to Catholicism, and now for the first time, the Bishops of the Ethiopian Church joined the other internal factions to quickly overthrow the emperor. The Emperor's desperate attempt at quelling the civil war using Catholic soldiers from Portugal and Rome backfired in the most horrendous way. Nor could the situation remotely be described as "Papal Tyranny." At best, the Roman Catholic presence in Ethiopia was a tiny handful of Jesuit missionaries. The Ethiopian encounter with Catholicism was disastrous and brief, and quickly led to the overthrow of the Emperor. Again, what happened to the idea of monolithic and evil Papal Supremacy, dominating Christianity?:

[The churches of Africa held the Sabbath as it was held by the papal church before her complete apostasy. While they kept the seventh day in obedience to the commandment of God, they abstained from labor on the Sunday in conformity to the custom of the church. Upon obtaining supreme power, Rome had trampled upon the Sabbath of God to exalt her own; but the churches of Africa, hidden for nearly a thousand years, did not share in this apostasy. [Note: as stated above, they were "hidden" because they openly defied the Pope at the Council of Chalcedon and broke away from the rest of Christianity] When brought under the sway of Rome, they were forced to set aside the true and exalt the false Sabbath; but no sooner had they regained their independence than they returned to obedience to the fourth commandment.]

I can't tell whether that statement is based on craven dishonesty, or stupendous ignorance, but weekly services constitute only a minuscule part of an Ethiopian Orthodox Christian's religious observance. There are many other religious holy days that are FAR more important than Sabbath OR Sunday. "Many holy days require prolonged services, singing and dancing, and feasting. An important religious requirement, however, is the keeping of fast days. All devout believers are to maintain the full schedule of fasts, comprising 250 days." It is painfully obvious that White had not the foggiest idea of the extremely-tiny role the Sabbath played and plays in actual Ethiopian Orthodox practice. While they indeed observe BOTH Sabbath and Sunday Worship, the many other Holy and Fast Days are many magnitudes more important to this denomination:

In summary, once again White demonstrates her "Papal Derangement Syndrome" as she views Ethiopian history through the ridiculous and dishonest lenses of fanatical Sabbath-veneration and unvarnished Papacy-hatred. Neither ideology is remotely-adequate to explaining the very brief blip in history (less than 8 years!)of the one and only Catholic Emperor of Ethiopia.
Registered user
Username: Resjudicata

Post Number: 135
Registered: 4-2014
Posted on Friday, July 04, 2014 - 9:28 am:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)


Given the complete absence of any account of Protestant persecution of Sabbath Keepers in the Great Controversy, it seems obvious that White took great pains to deliberately withhold such history from Adventist membership. Here is what she predicts the fate of Adventists will be:

"As the Sabbath has become the special point of controversy throughout Christendom, and religious and secular authorities have combined to enforce the observance of the Sunday, the persistent refusal of a small minority to yield to the popular demand will make them objects of universal execration."

White writes this like she is describing something brand new. And reading the Great Controversy, you would think it WAS something unprecedented, outside of Roman Catholic persecution. The Truth is, many of her Protestant heroes long ago accomplished what Adventists now deeply fear. I've already demonstrated Zwingli's absolute opposition to the Seventh Day Sabbath in a previous letter, and his mandatory Sunday worship, enforced by civil magistrates. Under Zwingli, at the very least, failure to attend church on Sunday could land you in jail. Let's look at some of the rest of them now. But first, what was the role that the Seventh Day Sabbath played with the Anabaptists?

"But they were agreed that the “sole authority” of Scripture in matters of religion should be carried to its legitimate “issues”, and it was the case that a number not only “held it to be unchristian to celebrate Sunday,” but also associated true faith and the right mode of baptism with the proper observance of God’s holy rest day. To this the old chronicle of Sebastina Frank (A.D. 1536) testifies:--

“Some have suffered torture and separated themselves simply because they would not rest when others kept Sunday, for they declared it to be the holiday and law of Antichrist, with whom they would have nothing in common, as well as were the other holidays.”

So it is clear that the Anabaptists were as a group the largest Sabbath-keeping denomination during the Protestant Reformation. How did the other Protestants treat them? Not well:

- Marin Luther: "Luther added the words "I approve," and expressly sanctioned the executions of heretics [particularly Sabbath-observant Anabaptists], "although it is terrible to view." He did this for four reasons: (1) They condemn the office of preaching the Word. (2) They have no definite doctrine. (3) They suppress true doctrine. (4) They want to destroy the kingdom of this world.",_Martin_(1483-1546)

"Anabaptists were fined, drowned, burned at the stake, tortured, and persecuted in all the manners of the day for such crimes as refusal to pay tithes, refusal to attend church, refusal to refrain from Bible study groups in private homes, refusal to refrain from preaching, and other offences against the church-state. Thousands of Anabaptists were put to death.
In fact, because many believed in immersion, many were put to death by drowning. The Lutherans also put many Anabaptists to death by one form of execution or another.

"Soon Munster was besieged by an army of Catholics and Lutherans. After granting a short period of grace in which to leave the city, the Munsterites killed without mercy all those they suspected of being unsympathetic to them. Matthys was killed in battle in April, 1534, after which John of Leyden took charge. He introduced the practice of polygamy, and in the autumn of 1534 assumed the title of king.

Munster lay under siege for more than a year while these radical Anabaptists held out with great courage. Their sufferings were indescribable. On June 24, 1535, the city was taken. A terrible massacre followed in which the leaders of Munster were maliciously tortured."

The following are a few samples of the terms employed against the Anabaptists by the leading Reformers:

Latimer: “Pernicious and devilish opinions of the Baptists.”
Becon: “Wicked, apish Anabaptists, foxish hypocrites, that damnable sect, liars, bloody murderers both of soul and body,”
Bullinger: “Obstinate, rebellious, brain-sick, frantic, filthy knaves.”
Zwingli: “Pestiferous seed of their doctrines, hypocritical humility of their speech more bitter than gall.”
Luther finally calls them “sectaries of the devil,” and compares their constancy with that of the Donatists, or the Jews at the destruction of Jerusalem, being “the blind frenzy of Satan.”

- “The Episcopalians and the Presbyterians of England, the Lutherans of Germany, and the Reformed in Switzerland, differing from one another, and refusing inter-communion, agreed in persecuting the Baptists. They were a sect everywhere spoken against.”
“The Baptists traveled too fast, and went too far; if they could not be stopped by other means, the fire must be lighted, or the headman’s axe employed. Thus the men were silenced: the emperor, Charles the Fifth, ordered all the women to be drowned or buried alive, and no judge could mitigate these decrees, unless he was willing to be regarded as a protector of the heretics, and be proceeded against as such."

- “Zwingli…had no mercy on the Anabaptists, who threatened to overthrow his work in Zürich. After trying in vain to convince them by successive disputations, the magistrate under his control resorted to the Cruel irony of drowning their leaders (six in all) in the Limmat near the lake of Zürich (between 1527 and 1532).”

Could the Great Controversy possibly be any more dishonest in its portrayal of the Protestant Reformers? With White, human beings are absolutely evil or absolutely good. ALL popes are BAD (notwithstanding the scores of them that lived pious, decent and self-sacrificing lives). And ALL Reformers were wonderful and pure human beings. This is a grotesque distortion of history in aid of wildly-blowing the importance of the 7th Day Sabbath out of any proportion.

And so Adventists live under the delusion of an elaborate Fairy Tale.
Registered user
Username: Resjudicata

Post Number: 136
Registered: 4-2014
Posted on Saturday, July 05, 2014 - 9:31 am:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)


Time for a recap. I have some abiding impressions, and I will see if I can write some theses summaries adequate to the task:

- The Great Controversy expounds a rabidly-fanatic "Sabbath-Centric" worldview.

- It is coupled with a deeply-unhinged hatred and disturbingly-dishonest ideology of Papacy Supremacy.

- Neither of those foundations of The Great Controversy are biblically- or historically-supportable. Together, they cause a deeply-dishonest belief in a Papal Conspiracy Theory of Sabbath Abandonment that is neither historically or Biblicaly supportable.

- Throughout history, Papal overreach has caused severe backlashes: Oriental Orthodoxy first (and especially Ethiopia), Eastern Orthodoxy next, the Protestant Reformation, the Waldensians. This has led to massive portions of Christianity that were not under Papal control.

- Papal Supremacy is and always has been largely a myth. It is strongly objected to by both Eastern Orthodoxy and Protestantism.

- Neither the Papacy nor Roman Catholicism had anything to do with Christianity's adoption of Sunday Worship, or the yearly celebration of Easter. To argue that they did is to simply indulge in "Resurrection Denial." Simply put, Sunday Worship quickly became a tradition based on the overwhelming impact of history's central event. It is a strange argument that it could have been otherwise.

- Rome and the Papacys' greatest and most effective historical enemies: Oriental Orthodoxy, Eastern Orthodoxy, the Protestant reformers, Waldensians..... ALL gave careful study to the Sabbath/Sunday question. They were squarely presented with Sabbatarians arguments, studied the issue carefully and almost unanimously rejected Sabbatarianism. NONE of them retained Sunday worship as a result of Papal pressure OR influence. In fact, there is NO evidence the Papacy TRIED in the slightest to steer the above groups of dissenters towards Sunday observation.

- The largest anti-Papacy, anti-Rome movements often vigorously persecuted Sabbatarians, particularly the Anabaptists. Yet I can find no evidence that Anabaptists were persecuted for their Sabbatarians beliefs, but their other fanatic doctrines.

- Sabbatarianism was and is not one of the primary Anabaptist doctrines:

- Seventh Day Adventism is simply unique and historically-unprecedented in its fanatic emphasis on the Sabbath.There is no historical analogy for this. No other religious movement in Christian history has elevated Sabbath Keeping to a necessity of Salvation, other than Adventism.

- The conduct of Sunday-keeping Churches refutes any notion of Seventh Day Adventism's emphasis on the importance of Sabbatarianism: There is a vast trend of Churches now offering Saturday services:

- There is no support in the United States for a National Sunday Law, and no possibility that one could survive Judicial Review OR the legislative process. The belief that one is possible is simply a historically-unsupportable outcome of the unfounded Papal Conspiracy Theory of Sabbath Abandonment. Most likely, the Catholic Church would rise up in protest against any law that would force Sunday observance, particularly since nearly every Catholic Diocese offers Saturday Mass. In any event, the Catholic Church is powerless to cause the adoption of a National Sunday Law, especially since it has had no effect whatsoever in its strong positions against Gay marriage and abortion. The Catholic Church is powerless to prevent a Pro-Abortion President from delivering a commencement address at a Catholic University. Vast majorities of Catholics reject the Church's position on abortion, Gay rights, women's rights and many other issues.

I would appreciate your critique of these bullet points.

(Message edited by Resjudicata on July 05, 2014)

(Message edited by Resjudicata on July 05, 2014)
Registered user
Username: Resjudicata

Post Number: 138
Registered: 4-2014
Posted on Sunday, July 06, 2014 - 6:03 am:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Well, if anyone is paying attention to this discussion, it appears we have turned a corner. I got this from my correspondent in an email yesterday (his wife died recently from long-term Parkison's disease and now he is dating a non-Adventist):

"I am an SDA partially (mostly) because my parents and great grandparents were. In the past I have stayed because my wife insisted. Now, I am in a new ball game and not totally sure where I will go or do.
A week or two ago I met some more of my girl friend’s family. This couple are pretty serious Quakers and that really rang my bell. There is so much about the Quakers that I admire. I may well change my mind and attend the Quaker church from time to time. My personal philosophy seems to lean their way."


Sounds like you are honestly seeking out some alternatives to Adventism. I strongly support your interest in Quakers and Methodism. I am guessing that your interest in the Society of Friends is based on the huge concentration of Evangelical Quakers 10 miles east of you. I have a number of long-lost friends that grew up in that church and have nothing but good to say about it. They are very strongly Bible-believing, Resurrection-obsessed Christians. BRAVO!

I look forward to your rejoinder to my "recap" letter I just sent you.
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Username: Mountaingirl

Post Number: 85
Registered: 8-2013
Posted on Monday, July 07, 2014 - 10:40 am:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Just sending a thanks for these posts. How utterly off the SDA historical Christian teaching I was given is. Very refreshing to have been reading about facts over the past year it helps in throwing out all the error is GC and SDAism.

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