? for Barry. How do Seven Day Adventists compare to JW's

by jwfacts 29 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • wednesday

    I had a doc who was a SDA. I just loved him. He did sort of act like an elder when I came in for my visits, but he seemed motivated by love and genuine afection and a desire to help and educate. He knew I was poor and had not had a nifty childhood and advantages others had. He even told me the JWS elders were not doing their job, ie trying to educate me. Well, I'm not as ignorant anymore, and my education is an ongoing process. I respect he SDA but do see they practice DF. However, it sems to me they try harder to help the people involved and take into account the circumstances involved. but b/c they pracitce df, I would never join them.

  • wednesday
    Seventh-day Adventists accept the Bible as their only creed and hold certain fundamental beliefs to be the teaching of the Holy Scriptures. These beliefs, as set forth here, constitute the church's understanding and expression of the teaching of Scripture. Revision of these statements may be expected at a General Conference session when the church is led by the Holy Spirit to a fuller understanding of Bible truth or finds better language in which to express the teachings of God's Holy Word.

    from their site, so they get "new light " too.

  • moggy lover
    moggy lover

    According to my understanding [having spoken only to a very few SDAs] there is a major difference of belief between the two groups, the WTS and the SDAs in regard to the "Afterlife" MissBehave has touched on this a little earlier, but may I be allowed to elaborate:

    According to WT belief, as we all know, they teach that when a person dies he/she passes into a state of non-existence, his/her entire being is snuffed out, and that person no longer exists in any real sense of the term. Thus when the time for resurrection arrives, jhoover, esq, has to RECREATE the person using his memory of what he/she was in life. The person thus recreated actually has NO biological link to the previous existence, whatever link that is retained being rather tenous, at best. The important thing, however is that the WTS does not teach a resurrection, which requires a re-animation of exactly the very same person as the one who died.

    That to my understanding is NOT what SDAs teach. This is how it was told to me: The person who is resurrected must be exactly the same as the person who died, with a direct concious link for the two. This is achieved by the following. When a person dies, whether good, or bad, he does NOT pass into non-being, rather there is something that does survive the person's death. It is not the soul of course, because like the WTS, the SDAs teach that the soul is the person. However the "Spirit" of the person survives. This is the real husk, the essence of being, the vital source that undergirds the person's sense of consciousness and being. The ego, if you will.

    This "spirit" of the person continues to exist after death, but in a state of suspended animation either with the Lord if good, or in Hades if bad.Come the resurrection, the "spirit" of the godly person which contains the person's real being is clothed with a new, resurrection body, similar to Christ's. Thus a direct link is maintained with the two conditions of the person. He/she is aware of being exactly the same as the person who died

    The ungodly are, however interesting. At the Final Jugement when all ungodly persons will be judged, they too will be resurrected. They will have their "spirits" reanimated and clothed with bodies. They will then be told the reason for their adverse divine sentence and THEN they will be annihilated, ie, go into non-existence. This is because there is no further need for a resurrection.

    Whereas the WTS has already played God and publicly denied certain ones the resurrection, like most evangelical believers, the SDAs teach that every single person who has ever lived will be resurrected. The characterizations of Good and Bad however are detirmined by God, not the SDAs


  • jwsons

    I believe Ken Raines has a nice page about this topic: Jehovah's Witnesses:An Adventist and Russellite Offshoot


  • barry

    Gday JWfacts,

    Just send me $20 and by return mail you will get my handprint on a piece of holy cloth . As a member of the only true religion on earth today The SDA church you will share in the graces bestowed by our heavenly father.

    Now I will be more serious I just couldnt resist putting that in.

    When talking about the SDA church I would prefer to divide the church into two broard groups. One being traditional Adventists who generally beleive in the more cultic doctrins would not mix as well well with christians of other denominations and have a more catholic theology. This group is the focas of most arguements against the SDA church.

    The second broard group would be the evangicals who would beleive in the protestant doctrine of righteousness by faith be far less cultic and mix well with other denominations.

    The SDA traditional group with a scale of one to ten would be 6 while the JWs would be an 8 . The evangelical group would rate much the same as other protestant christians.

    It should be noted here that the JW religion is also a high control group and this is another aspect not present in other denominations.

    I with many other SDAs beleive a christian is all those who trust in the merits of christ and is not dependent of denomination.

    When Barnhhouse and Dr Martin studied Adventism in the 50s they warned about the many differences in SDA theology between differing groups in the church and claimed that the SDA church may be given cultic statis for this reason.

    So are SDAs the only true religion ? It depends on who answers the question.

    SDAs are free to join services with other christians when I first went to the memorial at the Kingdom hall I told my minister where I was going and invited him along and of course he came along with me. I have allways mixed with other christians from my school days we had religious instruction at school and I usually went to Anglican or Prespetarian scripture classes.

    Gday James Woods,

    In the SDA church all higher education is valued and because of this the church has had various problems such as the problem of evolution v creationism in fact statistics show SDAs have on average twice the number of degrees as the rest of the population in the US.

    Gday Chimene,

    50% of SDAs practice health reform and as a result have a longer and better quality older age and this is actually causing problems for the churches retirement fund as health reform is working too well with people living far longer than they ever expected. This can be verified by independant scources.

    Gday Wednesday.,

    SDAs actually dont df since 2000 no SDA has been DF the most a church can do is ask a member to leave and of course there is no shunning either. Here is an interesting artical it nearly is enough convince me to be a vegetarian http://www.spectrummagazine.org/onlinecommunity/featuredcolums/060210rice.html

  • jwfacts

    Thank you Barry, and all the other people that commented.

    It sounds as if the SDA's are keeping up with the times and becoming a better religion for it.

    I have heard of studies done into SDAs by the medical community due to their reputation for being the most healthy living group, at the time I was a JW so I had wondered why JWs dont get studied, obviously I now realise that they do not stand out in that regard.

  • barry

    if i have made the SDA church look to rosey to balance things out there is an SDA doctrine I must write about soon its called the investigative judgement and is a doctrine I strongly dissagree with and is promoted for the most part by the Traditional SDA group. Barry

  • james_woods

    Barry - thanks for putting that thread up. Maybe what MF Richard was relating on the college/medical thing was the tradition your church has held for medical progressive thought.

    Didn't know if you wanted to go there, but could you comment for the benefit of the rest of us on the Millerite chronology (1844,1874) and the splinter group connection to JW roots? Is there an official position on that? And, of course, have you folks given up on chronology and time of the end things?

    Enquiring minds want to know!

    YF, James

  • barry

    Gday James,

    Just to clear up a few points from the start. William Miller after the great dissappointement of 1843-4 honestly and openly acknowledged his error.

    The SDA church after being formed in the 1860s retained the 1844 date and reinterpreted it to be the start of the investigative judgement. Other churches such as the Advent christian church dont have the investigative judgement doctrine.

    Other dates such as 1874 were used by second adventists to be the second comming of christ and an invisible presents. Most Adventist churches including the SDAs have never made a time for the second comming.

    Anything written on SDA -JW connection and I would be on here in a heartbeat to tell you all about it.

    For the purpose of youre question about Millers chronology I will refer to a book recently written by Kai Arasola who is the current president of east Finlands SDA conference. His recent doctoral dissertation from Uppsala University is now making its way through the Adventist scholarly world.

    Kai writes, Miller utilised by God,

    William Miller was a man of undoubted integrity and a thorough Christian was the founder of the Millerite Movement of the 1840s thet looked for Christs return about 1843-1844.

    He insisted that the then current hope for an increasingly better world culminating in a millenium of blessedness was biblicly unfounded. He was correct. The Baptist farmer was . ahead of the theologians.

    Miller Mistaken, But Miller accepted prevailing popular views about the interpretation of prophecy using the year-day principle to arrive at significant dates in the christian era and thereby contravened the warnings of Christ in Acts 1-7 and Matthew 24-36.

    Millers methods refuted, Kai points out that William Miller had fifteen ways of arriving at 1843-44 as the general time of Christs return, The time prophecy of Daniel 8-14 was only one of Millers proofs and he gave no prominence to it . This is the one used by Adventists.

    Bible scholard in Millers time and later looked at Millers fifteen proofs and found them without validity. There were few who could be called bible scholars who were in the Great Dissappointement of 1844.

    Kai points out the flimsy nature of Millers chronological pillars. Kai emphasises that the whole scholarly world has repudiated them. He mentions that only Seventh day Adventists, The worldwide church of God and the Jehovahs Witnesses cling to Millers approach in interpreting Prophecy.

    When Kai Mentions Seventh Day Adventism he is mainly talking about the traditional SDAs not the scholars of the church.

    Critical Quotations,

    Firstly and possibly most significantly one can consider what is missing in Millers rules. They make no mention of Christ of salvation or of the gospel. This matches the near total lack of devotional writing in Millers perodicals in spite of the fact that some historicits outside of Millerism sought to interpret prophecies with a Christocentric method only few Millerites expressed any concern about this.

    The proofs rest on technical points like biblical and historical chronology which probably gave athe system. Laymen were unable to check the validity of the points themselves and emotional factors and the retoric of the arguement may have led many to decide in favour of Miller.

    All of Millers calculations contain a mathematical error. Miller overlooked the non-existence of a year zero which indicates that no Millerite before 1844 did his homework correctly.

    Millerites beleived that a multiplication of weak points makes one strong point. Thus the arguement was multiplied into 15 points some of which were justly ridiculed by opponents and brushed aside by supporters.the path of logic

    Some of the proofs are not time prophecies at all or their actual intent is turned upside down. The power of religious convictions has rarely followed the paths of logic.

    I beleive this book called 'The End of Historicism ' would be as helpfull to JWs as it is to SDAs Barry

  • jwfacts

    Thanks Barry.
    What is the investigative judgement, it seems to have some prominence for SDA's?

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