Seventh Day Adventism Answered 20

Some random questions for any member of the SDA…

What authority gave Ellen G. White the authority to lead the SDA church? Why did no one object to her assuming control?

Does the SDA church deny today that they teach that Jesus is the archangel Michael?

Do they deny that they are indeed the authors of the Jehovah’s Witnesses heresies?

there are major errors associated with the SDA’s. So many in fact that they conflicgt with orthodox christian doctrines in areas of theology, christology, pneumatology, soteriology, hamartiology, angelology…. almost every area of doctrine.

I would submit that the differences remain so great that the SDA cannot be considered Christian, but rather a pagan religion or a cult. Loosely organized and poorly controlled, but still a cult.

What test prophecy did Ellen G. White give before the Adventists accepted her as a prophet?

Error led to the SDa accepting Ellen G as a prophet, this in turn led to accepting a host of doctrinal errors.

SDA denies today that they originally did not believe Jesus is God.

Ellen G. White accepted the Trinity, but her husband James White did not.

Is this not a conflict? If she truly was a prophet of God as James White taught others, then would he not have simply accepted what she taught on this issue?

And is this not a conflict that she claimed (in violation of Scripture) to speak with him and be guided by him after he died? We know that any who deny the Trinity will not inherit the kingdom of God. So, either she was a false prophet from the start, as I have maintained from the start, or the James white manifestation was a demon. In that latter case, the writings of Ellen G. White cannot be the equal of Scripture, nor can they complete them as the SDA maintain.

At what point was she misled by a demonic apparition? If she was a prophet, why did she not realize he was a demon?

Why would she speak to the dead, when if she was a prophet she would have known that this was forbidden by Scripture?

If she was mistaken, she cannot be a prophet. If she was lying, she cannot be a prophet. If she was misled, she cannot be a prophet. The only hope for the SDA church now is to deny that the spirit of James White came to Ellen G. White after his death and descent into Hell, and claim the stories were forged. In which case we would have a different problem then – which of her writings are authentic and which are forgeries???

doctrinal error leads to doctrinal error. If the seed is corrupt, so too will the fully grown plant from that seed.

If William Miller was wrong right from the start, so too will everything that grew out of it, including the SDA, which doctrinally is as full of error as Miller’s other offspring the Jehovah’s Witnesses.


Date Setting

6 When they therefore were come together, they asked of him, saying, Lord, wilt thou at this time restore again the kingdom to Israel? 7 And he said unto them, It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in his own power. Acts 1:6-7 (KJV)

Rapture Date Settings

1843 Rapture William Miller

1844 Rapture William Miller

1914 Rapture Jehovah’s Witnesses

1916 Rapture Jehovah’s Witnesses

1925 Rapture Jehovah’s Witnesses

1975 Rapture Jehovah’s Witnesses

1975 September 6 Rapture Dr. Charles R. Taylor

1979 Rapture Eldon D. Purvis

1980 April 1 Rapture Elijah Two

1980 Rapture Mikkel Dahl

1980 Antichrist Sets up Kingdom Emil Gaverluk

1984 Rapture Jack Van Impe

1988 Sept. 11, Sept. 13 Rapture Edgar C. Whisenant

1988 September 12 Rapture About 6:pm Jerusalem Time Rick Henry Hall

1989 October 1 Rapture Joseph R. Civelli

1992 October Rapture Bang-Ik Ha

1992 October 28 Rapture COC Mission

1994 September Second Coming Harold Camping

1996 September 14 70th Week Begins. Barney Fuller

1996 Rapture Sid Roth

1996 Millennium Begins C. G. Ozanne

1996 November 2 Rapture James McCutchan

1997 October 16 Millennium Begins Joseph R. Civelli

1998 May 31 Rapture I (first rapture) M.J. Agee

1998 November Armageddon Ends Robert Bartel 46

2000 Rapture Clarence Larkin

2000 Rapture Avi Ben Mordecai

2000 March Rapture Marvin Byers

2000 October 9 Armageddon E. Berkeley Hammond

2000 October 19 Rapture James McCutchan

2001 Rapture David Webber / N.W. Hutchings

2002 October 7 Rapture 6:00pm Jerusalem Time Colen Deal

2003 September 27 Second Coming James McCutchan

2007 September 13 Second Coming James McCutchan

2007 September 13 Millennium Begins M. J. Agee

2008 April 21 Armageddon Begins M. J. Agee

2012 doomsday (contemporary interpretation by nameless peyote smoking new ager based upon the Mayan Calendar)

2012 Second Coming Harold Camping

I’m a little surprised that in the writing where I found most of the list above (THE ESCHATOLOGY WARS: Brutal War Against Bible Prophecy By David A. Lewis) some of these names were left out. Either it was not intended to be an accurate, complete list -or it was decided not to put Jack Van Impe’s prediction on the list. My understanding is he’s done this twice, although I can’t find today the exact date. I’m thinking he’d said 1992, but hey… I don’t have it, so I won’t put it.

Everyone makes a big deal about Harold Camping being wrong twice, but nobody bats an eye about Jack Van Impe or Sid Roth. I wonder why?

I’m inclined to calculate the date at Feb. 31, 1975, and Armageddon at Sept. 31, 1982. We all missed it, due to impending excitement over a Celtics game (it’s plausible – Larry Bird was playing…) the next week.

Seriously. No man knoweth the day nor the hour. It is not given to us to know. The Bible speaks plainly. It’s a wonderful thing to get excited about the Lord’s Return. And we get all into reading Daniel, which is also a good thing.

But when you reach for that calculator, STOP. We cannot know the day nor the hour. And we’re all excited about watching Hollywood movies about some guy sitting there with ancient books, and can calculate the actual date that the sun will shine on the Sneffels volcano and reveal the hidden treasure or whatever.

But the Bible is the word of God. It’s not a secret decoder ring. The Lord is amazingly blunt. If the date had been in there, He’d have cautioned us that the date is in there, but woe to the man who calculates wrongly!

Instead, we’re told no man knoweth the date or the hour.

Want my prediction? The Lord can come at any moment. It’s been that way since 30 seconds after His ascension, and will be all the way until the very moment of the Rapture. Need a date? What more do you need than this?

Seventh Day Adventism Answered 5

In the last few days, I’ve discussed how Ellen G. White is invalid to teach men or preach, according to the Bible. I’ve also analyzed and discussed William Miller and the Great Disappointment.

I’ve always been surprised that most Bible teachers use Miller as a lead in to discussing SDA, without analyzing the fact that essentially the SDA is teaching Miller was wrong the first time, right the second time but wrong about saying he was wrong and what he was wrong about.

There’s one word consistent with that sentence. See if you can pick out what word is repeated over and over again. Essentially, that sums up Miller’s teachings.

This damages the SDA’s position right off the bat. As you’ll see, they maintain he was partially correct about 1844. Now, the Bible does not give leeway for partially correct. Prophecies in the Bible are never depicted as 50% correct, or any other fraction. They are 100% correct 100% of the time. That’s how you know it’s God.

So we move at last to Ellen G. White. At the age of 9, she suffered one of the worst cases of bullying I’ve ever heard of. She and her brother apparently were walking to school, when an older girl was following them and shouting insults. The older girl actually picked up a rock and through it at Ellen Harmon (her maiden name), striking her in the face. It broke her nose, and apparently was almost killed. From the description of it, it created massive brain damage. Ellen Harmon passed out, and revived briefly, before falling into a coma that lasted about three weeks, by her own testimony. There is no way to know if her coma, without benefit of oxygen for THREE WEEKS caused any additional brain damage.

Ellen attempted to return to school, but was unable to stay and study. As a result, she never really got much education beyond learning to read and write.

in 1840 – only three years later, Ellen and her family heard William Miller preach, and that the end of the world would come in 1843. Ellen apparently was terrified she might be lost forever, and wept in terror, spending most of that night praying and weeping.

She went to a Methodist meeting with her family, and was struck by the spectacle of people passing out from “the power”. Ellen reported a “wonderful” conversion at the meeting. But in 1842, she became worried again she was not saved. “Condemnation rang in my ears day and night” . “I feared that I would lose my reason. “Despair overwhelmed me.” I frequently remained in prayer all night, groaning and trembling with inexpressible anguish”. (quoted from Life of Ellen G. White, D. M. Canright 1889)

D. M. Canright also writes…

In dreams she went to heaven and met Jesus, andwas relieved (p. 28). Then she attended prayer meeting and fell unconscious, andremained in this state all night (p. 31). This was often repeated. She seeks to give theimpression that her exercises were all the work of the Spirit of God. But where they? No;they were simply the result of her physical and mental condition, wrought upon by the religious excitements with which she was unfortunately surrounded. Miller’s alarming predictions nearly unbalanced her hysterical mind in her feeble body.

Later Ellen White concluded that she simply did not understand the gospel, and if she did understand it, she would have not been so frantic. I would agree with her on that. It seemed Mrs. White was attempting by her own fear and piety as a child to try to be saved. This of course is salvation by works. I find it interesting that she dreamed of God and Christ. This may possibly suggest that emotional upset was indeed possibly creating mental trauma that was further influenced by her recent brain damage. I’m sure the SDA church would disagree on these points.

However, there is no denying that this was causing emotional trauma. I can vouch for the emotional distress caused by a sudden realization of one’s sinfulness, and your own eventual punishment in hell. I can recall that experience upset me for almost a full day. However, I do think that Ellen was too young to be able to respond to the Gospel, and such preachings filled her with terror that was too much for someone who’d had traumatic brain injury just a few years before.

It is reported that Ellen was sickly, and frail during her early life. Let me stop and sum up what we’ve learned. At 9 years of age she is struck by a rock that nearly kills her, and puts her in a coma lasting three weeks. Then from age 13 to 17, she is exposed to fiery emotional “end of the world” preaching – from a preacher who was not her pastor, and in a position to preach on salvation, Christian discipleship, Christian values, mentoring, Christian service, how to study your Bible, any Sunday School class, etc. She is driven by a panicky fear of the world ending while she’s still a child, and being doomed to Hell. All this while in feeble physical health, emotional, and apparently easily excitable by nature.

I don’t fault Miller’s preaching – but if you’re traveling preaching only an eschatological message, without tempering it by other sermons explaining the new birth, salvation, atoning sacrifice, etc… that’s risky. It does not create a balanced congregation. EVERY element of the Christian lifestyle is equally important. There are for instance some sermons a pastor should regularly preach, such as church attendance, the new birth, the salvation plan, Jesus Christ as God, etc.

Ellen White does not record hearing any such sermons – only eschatological ones. I’m told that seeing the incredibly cheesy “A distant Thunder/Thief in the Night” movies when you’re at an age like that is…. terrifying.

The Great Disappointment would have further been an emotional shock. Their beloved prophet was wrong! What happened? After two months, in Dec. 1844, Ellen Harmon had her first dream/vision, while trying to understand what went wrong.

I think the correct response from everyone on hearing of her vision should have been an uncomfortable silence, and some reassurance, But She dreamed/saw two things – the Adventists themselves were to blame in 1844 by not being holy enough. And that the 1843 date was also correct, but God’s hand covered the numbers, hiding the mistake.

I’m not sure if she’s saying God made the mistake, or if he purposely concealed the mistake from Miller. Either way, I’m very uncomfortable with what she’s attributing to God.

Again, I ask – why would God simply not give the number right the first time? If it really was from God, then it wouldn’t contradict the statements in Scripture that we cannot know the time, and that it would have been right the first time. And these two statements are something that no Seventh Day Adventist can possibly argue with.

As to the Adventists not being holy enough, again, this almost sounds like her earlier obsessions with thinking she needed to weep and pray all night to be saved.

I’m very careful on this point, as my own conviction seemed like it lasted an hour. I’m keenly aware that it probably was only ten minutes or so of fear and prayer. And yes, I was weeping as well. I worry a little about people to whom being born again is like something you can do while bored and chewing bubblegum. It’s the most important decision you can make. It’s not something you do lightly. If you did, I’m going to suggest – you might want to think seriously about it, and ask if you’re saved? You may need ten minutes of urgent prayer, tears and fear yourself.

I do not fault her terror… but it continued for some time. Not one night, but apparently repeatedly. If she really got saved at the Methodist meeting, then it should really have settled the question.

Was Israel worthy that Jesus should live and walk among them? No. not in the slightest. Is today’s Christianity worthy of the Rapture? Yet the Bible portrays the Rapture as happening at the end of the Laodecean period, which is the churches at their most lukewarm and terrible.

Here’s another idea – Miller was not trained as a Pastor, had not studied to shew himself approved as a workman rightly dividing the Scripture. I see no description of any pastor mentoring him, and declaring him to be so. My pastor made that pronouncement the first time he heard me preach (because he’s polite, and ignored some of my mistakes)… but he mentored me a little and made sure I was putting to use what I’d learned in my Seminary. I see no such relationship in the brief excerpts I’ve read about Miller. I can’t say for sure – I can’t locate any of his writings.

Miller made mistakes that anyone with proper pastoral oversight would not have made. He led tens of thousands astray. I see that an emotional, nervous, highly distraught girl with traumatic brain damage, already reporting dreams and visions of God being even further agitated by apocalyptic preachings, confusing her trances and visions as being messages from God. I don’t know if it was excitability, a period of mental imbalance, or simply trying to come to grip with sudden trances and a cascade of mental images.

For nobody to try to help her was the ultimate in cruelty. To take advantage of her brain damage to create a religious cult by James White, if such was the case, was even more cruel. I don’t know what the case was. I only know that she seemed to suffer visions and dreams, which we will of course talk about more later.

Seventh Day Adventism Answered 4

Having dealt with the utter lack of authority for Ellen G. White to ever preach or teach, we’ve also dealt with the fact that the Seventh Day Adventist church is based upon upon a belief that a bible teacher being wrong, being right the second time despite claiming he was wrong, and being wrong about what he was wrong about.

Look, the first “wrong” meant Miller was not to be listened to nor studied. Basically, he needed to step back from the ministry, which he did. He needed to stop teaching, which he did for a while. I cannot find any information whether he did resume preaching again after that. This is why it is so EXTREMELY dangerous to attempt to disciver the date of Christ’s return.

“But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only” (Mt. 24:36).

“Watch therefore; for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come” (Mt. 24:42).

“Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh” (Mt. 24:44).

“Watch therefore, for ye know neither the day nor the hour wherein the Son of man cometh” (Mt. 25:13).

“But of that day and that hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels which are in heaven, neither the Son, but the Father. Take ye heed, watch and pray: for ye know not when the time is” (Mk. 13:32-33).

“It is not for you to know the time or the seasons, which the Father hath put in his own power” (Acts 1:7).

Once you go on record of stating when the Lord’s return is, you’ve come perilously close to invalidating yourself for ministry! Not in the Bible, but rather, in the eyes of Bible Believing Christians. For instance, Jack Van Impe.

The minute I mention his name, you recall he once, or twice, gave a date for the Lord’s return.

How about Sid Roth? Aside from being a somewhat pathetic Hebrew Roots-word faith teacher, he’s going to be forever remembered for claiming 1996 was the date of the Lord’s return. Which would put the end of the Tribulation 13 years ago. I think we can all sum up why that’s wrong.

Miller figured out in 1843 that he was wrong. So did he do the right thing, announce his error, and ask for forgiveness along with a promise not to engage in false speculation?

Nope. He then went and recalculated. Reminds me of the “84 reasons Jesus will return in 1984!” claims. The same author wrote a second book… “85 reasons Jesus will return in 1985!” I think we all see how wrong that claim was.

Okay, William Miller was absolutely wrong. So.. why does anyone even remotely believe he was right? Or follow any teacher claiming he was right?

Miller REPENTED of these teachers. After the second go-round, he claimed that he was wrong, that he was sorry, and would not do this any more.

This was after people ruined themselves by selling homes and businesses, in preparation for the Rapture. Miller even told people where the first place would be! So people gathered, waiting for the day and the hour that the Bible had already told us that we could not know!

Nothing happened. As the day passed into night, people began jumping in the air, trying to jump start the Rapture.

I can think of no more a bitter disappointment. You just sold your general goods store that was becoming successful, spent money to get to this place, gave away your clothes, family heirlooms, etc.

I can only pray people were understanding and gave everything back. Because you just ruined your future, based upon someone’s false teachings. And that was 170 years ago. Did anyone ever take Miller to court, I wonder? In today’s litigation happy age, Miller would have had to declare bankruptcy in Federal court to avoid it.

Miller, in his time of preaching of this advent of the Lord from 1818 to 1844, gathered apparently tens of thousands of followers, some of whom it is recorded DID sell businesses, homes, belongings and gave away clothing, money, family heirlooms, etc. Now I suppose every family has that old dusty moose head that we all could well afford to let quietly slip out the back door with nary a regret, but what about Grandma’s wedding ring? That’s the kind of thing I’m sure people never got back.

Really, I could put a lot more work into Miller, his doctrines, and the Great Disappointment, but really, the average SDA simply won’t care, because none of them remember William Miller, they just know him from reading The Great Controversy and the glowing terms that Ellen G. White gave about him.

So let’s proceed from that fact…. Ellen G. White was wrong about him. She was duped into believing he was right.

Again, no problem. You acknowledge afterwards that you thought he’d been right at the time, but you were foolish and carried away by the emotionalism and a fervent desire to see the Lord return. Hey, that’s commendable!

But no, the Adventists simply developed theories about how Miller had been right the second time.

1 If there arise among you a prophet, or a dreamer of dreams, and giveth thee a sign or a wonder, 2 And the sign or the wonder come to pass, whereof he spake unto thee, saying, Let us go after other gods, which thou hast not known, and let us serve them; 3 Thou shalt not hearken unto the words of that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams: for the LORD your God proveth you, to know whether ye love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul. 4 Ye shall walk after the LORD your God, and fear him, and keep his commandments, and obey his voice, and ye shall serve him, and cleave unto him. 5 And that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams, shall be put to death; because he hath spoken to turn you away from the LORD your God, which brought you out of the land of Egypt, and redeemed you out of the house of bondage, to thrust thee out of the way which the LORD thy God commanded thee to walk in. So shalt thou put the evil away from the midst of thee. Deuteronomy 13:1-5 (KJV)

The Lord has spoken concerning such. The penalty was high simply because people’s entire lives can be destroyed by such a prophet.

True, Miller did not seduce the people into worshiping a false god. But keep a mental finger on this verse, because if you teach Jesus Christ is a pre-existent Angel and not God, then you most definitely are seducing people into worshiping a different Jesus, and a false god.

4 Being made so much better than the angels, as he hath by inheritance obtained a more excellent name than they. 5 For unto which of the angels said he at any time, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee? And again, I will be to him a Father, and he shall be to me a Son? 6 And again, when he bringeth in the firstbegotten into the world, he saith, And let all the angels of God worship him. 7 And of the angels he saith, Who maketh his angels spirits, and his ministers a flame of fire. 8 But unto the Son he saith, Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever: a sceptre of righteousness is the sceptre of thy kingdom. 9 Thou hast loved righteousness, and hated iniquity; therefore God, even thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows. 10 And, Thou, Lord, in the beginning hast laid the foundation of the earth; and the heavens are the works of thine hands: Hebrews 1:4-10 (KJV)

But we’ll be getting to this over the next few days.

According to the Bible, if someone utters a prediction, or has a vision, and these things do not come true, they are not a prophet, and are not to be followed.

If Miller was wrong in 1843, then all of the Adventists should have rejected him. I’m sure (although there is no depiction of it after the 1843 failure) some did the Biblical thing and left. However, it looks like most stayed true. Admirable for loyalty’s sake, but wrong. According to the Bible, Miller stood in the office of a prophet by making predictions about future events. When that failed to come to pass, it became obvious he was 100% wrong – and according to the Bible, he was not a prophet. There’s a reason for that – the spirit of prophecy is no longer for this age, except in the revealed word of the Bible.

It doesn’t matter what visions anyone had about Miller being right the second time – if the Lord was behind the prophecy, if Miller was right about anything, it would have been by the hand of the Lord, and it would have been the first time, according to the Bible.

It’s amazing to me that people are this ignorant of Scripture. Wrong once about prophecy, wrong always. Now, if I have a dream that Joe Namath was the greatest quarterback of all time and he correctly led the Jets to victory, you could simply ask about all the other Superbowls after the one they won (sorry, I’m sports ignorant – if I make some mistake in analogies, please forgive me). Doesn’t matter what I dreamed.

So, for a 17 year old girl to suddenly have a mystic vision that Miller was wrong the first time, but right the second time – but not in the way he’d thought… essentially you’re saying a prophet was wrong twice.

If he’s invalid the first time, he’s invalid the second time. So, then, that dreamer would ALSO have to be wrong, according to the Bible.

That can’t be argued with. That’s Scripture. But as you’ll see, like all other cults, the SDA places their prophet’s words higher than the Bible. How can I say that? if she contradicts Scripture… who do you follow? Historically, the SDA has chosen to follow EGW rather than the Bible.

Tomorrow, we finally start examining Ellen G. White.

Seventh Day Adventism answered 3

Yesterday we examined whether or not the Bible permits a woman to teach or preach. We looked at prophetesses, and compared that to Biblical rules about women teaching, and concluded that women may teach other women, and that a Pastor must be a man.

We also compared our findings with a phrase that I doubt the SDA uses any more, that “her revelations must either be of God or Satan. If of Satan they would not teach such purity and holiness.” we concluded without any biblical authority to teach, then by their own admission, they are testifying that her visions must come from Satan.

There’s another option, of course – she made them up. Her trances and visions could have been the result of traumatic brain injury, and to cover for this, she simply made many of her visions and doctrines up to suit political expediency.

I’ll leave it to the SDA which answer they like better. I think it’s a combination of all three. I’m sure that everyone who disagrees with me will leave comments stating so.

Let’s backtrack a bit. The SDA comes from the William Millerite movement of the 19th century. Wiliam Miller, a Baptist pastor, was a member of the Restorationist movement, where the obsession was trying to restore the current churches back to the original state of the churches.

During this time, Miller became obsessed with finding the date of the Lord’s return. he experimented with a series of numbering sschemes, finally settling upon the profound assumption that the days mentioned Daniel 9 equalled years.

“Another kind of evidence that vitally affected my mind,” he says, “was the chronology of the Scriptures. . . . I found that predicted events, which had been fulfilled in the past, often occurred within a given time. The one hundred and twenty years to the flood (Gen_6:3); the seven days that were to precede it, with forty days of predicted rain (Gen_7:4); the four hundred years of the sojourn of Abraham’s seed (Gen_15:13); the three days of the butler’s and baker’s dreams (Gen_40:12-20); the seven years of Pharaoh’s (Gen_41:28-54); the forty years in the wilderness (Num_14:34); the three and a half years of famine (1Ki_17:1) [see Luk_4:25;] . . . the seventy years’ captivity (Jer_25:11); Nebuchadnezzar’s seven times (Dan_4:13-16); and the seven weeks, threescore and two weeks, and the one week, making seventy weeks, determined upon the Jews (Dan_9:24-27),–the events limited by these times were all once only a matter of prophecy, and were fulfilled in accordance with the predictions.”–Bliss, pages 74, 75. {quoted in The Great Controversy 323.2}

Notice something a little disturbing. I took that quote from The Great Controversy directly from an SDA source. Notice how they give the quote in a chapter-verse format similar to the Bible. That’s no accident. Correct form for quoting a source is Title, Author, Copyright and Year, Pg. Number. Yet when it’s written by Ellen G. White, they use Chapter:Verse.

If you go back to part one, where I reference the rules of defining a cult, I mentioned that one of the hallmarks of cultism is to hold other writings to be equal or superior to the Bible. Christianity alone places the Bible above all. “Sola Scriptura” is the hallmark of Christians. Yet the SDA hold other writings equal, if not superiior to the Bible. The Bible must be interpreted, it seems, in the light of Ellen G. White’s writings.

That’s a cult.

Getting back on subject, William Miller originally was a Deist, which is not a Christian. If anyone wants to argue the fact, it’s in the Great Controversy. He grew disillusioned with God nad the Bible listening to the doctrines of Deists, and ended up spending time as an anti-Christian.

What’s interesting was that he alludes to Annhilationism before he is even saved – indeed, that false doctrine was the very thing that led to him being saved!

“Annihilation was a cold and chilling thought, and accountability was sure destruction to all. The heavens were as brass over my head, and the earth as iron under my feet. Eternity–what was it? And death–why was it? The more I reasoned, the further I was from demonstration. The more I thought, the more scattered were my conclusions. I tried to stop thinking, but my thoughts would not be controlled. I was truly wretched, but did not understand the cause. I murmured and complained, but knew not of whom. I knew that there was a wrong, but knew not how or where to find the right. I mourned, but without hope.” {GC 318.2}

The problem with Annhilationism is that it cannot be found in the Bible. Annhilationism teaches that you are in Hell only for a brief period of time, then you are reduced to ashes eventually. So Miller then is not the architecht of Annhilationism. If you’ve read or taught that before, then the quote above should help you to correct that error.

However, this allows me to show you how, by taking Scriptures out of context and allegorizing them, the SDA twist Scriptures that disprove a thing into proving it!

20 But the wicked shall perish, and the enemies of the LORD shall be as the fat of lambs: they shall consume; into smoke shall they consume away. Psalm 37:20 (KJV)

At first glance, this does seem to support their doctrine.

43 And if thy hand offend thee, cut it off: it is better for thee to enter into life maimed, than having two hands to go into hell, into the fire that never shall be quenched: 44 Where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched. 45 And if thy foot offend thee, cut it off: it is better for thee to enter halt into life, than having two feet to be cast into hell, into the fire that never shall be quenched: 46 Where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched. 47 And if thine eye offend thee, pluck it out: it is better for thee to enter into the kingdom of God with one eye, than having two eyes to be cast into hell fire: 48 Where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched. Mark 9:43-48 (KJV)

However, Matthew says something different. It says “their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched.” Clearly, Christ Jesus is teaching us that torment in Hell lasts forever.

10 And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever. Revelation 20:10 (KJV)

The Antichrist will have been in Hell for 1,000 years by the time Satan is cast into Hell. That’s bad news for the Annhilationist doctrine, because if the Antichrist and the False Prophet were to burn away to nothing, I think it would have happened, oh, within a year, like some Rabbi’s teach. But we see that the fire is not quenched, their worm dieth not, and they shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever.

That’s pretty plain and obvious.

So, how then do we interrpret Psalm 37? Obviously, it is talking about physical life. This is true Bible interpretation, we let the Bible speak to us, and let it interpret itself. William Miller did a fairly good job of adpoting this rule according to the Great Controversy… but he limited it apparently to looking for where the same word is used. Notice Hell is not used in Psalm 37 (which should have been enough to tip him off it wasn’t talking about eternal punishment). I’m not faulting Miller, in that published concordances are a fariyl new invention (there are some that are hundreds of years old, it’s not a new idea – but Strong’s and Cruden’s were not published until after the time of the Great Disappointment).

What is interesting to me, is that there is no record of Miller ever attending a Seminary. There weren’t many seminaries in the United States in the 19th century, and it was common to take a prominent member of a Baptist church who knew their Bible well, ordain them, and send them out to plant a church somewhere, or to do the circuit preaching tour. In those days, most Baptist churches started as one or two Baptist families meeting in one home, and they would sing a hymn or two, read the scriptures, and discuss them. They then would write to an established Baptist church on the East Coast and ask them to send a preacher. The church would wait until they got three or four letters, and send one of these licensed preachers out to preach to all four or five meetings on a Sunday. I imagine the job was made easier in that you could write one sermon and deliver it to all five meetings. Quite a few midwestern churches got their start in this manner.

“As I was fully convinced,” says Miller, “that all Scripture given by inspiration of God is profitable (2Ti_3:16); that it came not at any time by the will of man, but was written as holy men were moved by the Holy Ghost (2Pe_1:21), and was written ‘for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the Scriptures might have hope’ (Rom_15:4), I could but regard the chronological portions of the Bible as being as much a portion of the word of God, and as much entitled to our serious consideration, as any other portion of the Scriptures. I therefore felt that in endeavoring to comprehend what God had in His mercy seen fit to reveal to us, I had no right to pass over the prophetic periods.”– Bliss, page 75. {GC 324.2}

The prophecy which seemed most clearly to reveal the time of the second advent was that of Dan_8:14 : “Unto two thousand and three hundred days; then shall the sanctuary be cleansed.” Following his rule of making Scripture its own interpreter, Miller learned that a day in symbolic prophecy represents a year (Num_14:34; Eze_4:6); he saw that the period of 2300 prophetic days, or literal years, would extend far beyond the close of the Jewish dispensation, hence it could not refer to the sanctuary of that dispensation. Miller accepted the generally received view that in the Christian age the earth is the sanctuary, and he therefore understood that the cleansing of the sanctuary foretold in Dan_8:14 represented the purification of the earth by fire at the second coming of Christ. If, then, the correct starting point could be found for the 2300 days, he concluded that the time of the second advent could be readily ascertained.

Miller decided that, from this erroneous calculation, that the meaning of Daniel 8:14 was partly an allegorical interpretation of the Scriptures, and partly a literal. This would be a partly correct view of the Scriptures, no matter which side you stood on. It’s kind of like getting on one knee while praying… either kneel or stand!

A quick discussion about the prophetic “day-year” chronology – it was just as wrong for the SDA as for the Jehovah’s Witnesses. Our first look at the 1843 prediction is – it was wrong.

Recalculating was a stubborn monument to error. The SDA itself is built upon error, right off the bat! I really can’t think of any other denomination or cult built off of, “our founder was wrong” except the SDA. I think this even trumps the naievity of the Mormons, in that Joseph Smith supposedly had to keep trudging up the hills to speak to Moroni to be proven worthy.

However the SDA is built upon “our founder was wrong the first time, which Biblically rules him out ever as being a prophet, and he said he was wrong the second time, which he was wrong about because he was right, but wrong about what he thought he was wrong about.”

“our founder was wrong the first time, which Biblically rules him out ever as being a prophet, and he said he was wrong the second time, which he was wrong about because he was right, but wrong about what he thought he was wrong about.” Philip Dean, summing up the SDA position on William Miller

try to unpack that sentence a few times… and think on that for the day. More tomorrow.