Exposing the Seventh-Day Adventist
By Robert W. Reed
Preached January 10, 2010, at Victory Baptist Church
Text: Isaiah 8:20
Let’s stand as we turn to the book of Isaiah chapter 8 this evening. I’m going to ask you to be patient with me tonight as we consider the subject of the Seventh-Day Adventist because I have about 60 or 70 quotes that I’ve carried into the pulpit with me. Obviously, we’ll not use all of them. You’ll see me shuffling things from side to side to decide what I’ll use and not use. I would rather just preach as I preached this morning, but when you deal with a subject like this, you need to document things that you say, not only from Scripture but also from their own writings. Basically, the distinctive teachings of the Seventh-Day Adventists would center around Sabbath-keeping, Investigative Judgment, a works-based salvation, vegetarianism, annihilation of the wicked, and soul sleep of the saints. Now, that’s pretty much how we could sum up their teachings. I’ve been asked by many people, “Do you consider them as being a cult?” and my answer is yes. They’re called Seventh-Day Adventists because of their emphasis on observing the Sabbath, and advent has to do with the coming of Jesus Christ. So they place great emphasis upon the Sabbath and the second advent, believing that they are fulfilling the prophecy as the remnant church.
Now, I’m going to read one verse from this particular chapter in the book of Isaiah, and then I’m going to give you an overview. We could spend literally weeks on each one of the distinctive doctrines, but we’re going to give an overview this evening. This will be the third message that I’ve preached on this subject in 20 years here in this church. Now, reading one verse to get started this evening in Isaiah chapter 8, we’ll read verse 20: “To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them.” I want to emphasize the part of the verse that says that “if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them.”
Father, we thank You tonight for the privilege and the opportunity and the blessing to come together again this evening, and we just ask, Lord, that You would lead and guide us. And, Lord, we pray for truth, we pray for righteousness, and we pray, Lord, that You would just be with us tonight and meet with us, for it’s in Christ Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.
If the only peculiar thing about the Seventh-Day Adventists was the keeping of the Sabbath, I personally would have no real problem with them, but that is not the only peculiar thing about them. There have been many others over the years who have kept the Sabbath, in other words, worship on the Sabbath instead of the first day of the week. That’s been a discussion for 2,000 years as to which day should be observed. There are even Seventh-Day Baptists, as I’ve said before, believing what we believe tonight about salvation and yet they simply worship on the seventh day instead of the first day of the week. In our state, as far as I know, there’s one Seventh-Day Baptist church in the north part of this state.
Now, I’ve got several quotes tonight, some thoughts here, and I’m going to try to let you know when I’m quoting from their material as much as possible. I’ve given you an article this morning dealing with the Seventh-Day Adventists. I have here their Statement of Faith that came off of their official Web site – their 28 Fundamental Beliefs. This is from their own web site. Laying here to my right are several of their magazines dealing with Amazing Facts Revealed, The Hidden Truth. I’ve collected some of their materials over the years. Here is a booklet entitled The Search for the True Church. Without any doubt, Seventh-Day Adventists believe that they are the true church, the remnant church, and we are not. So I just want to let you know that. If you’re not a part of them, you’re not a part of the true church. Now, that’s one sign of a cult. Here is a publication titled The Sign, and then here is a book that is very promoted through this religious organization, The Great Controversy Between Christ and Satan by Ellen G. White. Here’s another book titled National Sunday Law. Here’s another book that is titled Steps to Christ. I have many more. And then here is a chart laying out a doctrine out of Daniel chapter 8, verse 14. The whole denomination of Seventh-Day Adventists is centered around Christ’s coming on October 22, 1844, and if you can blow that theory out of the water, they have nothing else to stand on as far as Ellen White’s teachings.
Now, as we come here this evening and we consider this subject – again, I have a lot of their materials. I’ve just carried a few things here. I have an entire set, a series of DVDs, CDs. About eight or nine months ago back in May of last year, my wife had gone to visit her mother, so I spent an entire week in the month of May, about three hours every night, viewing the DVD material, their preachings and their teachings so I’d make sure that I knew exactly what they were saying and where they were coming from.
Now, you’ll remember a few weeks ago I preached a message entitled “Biblical Interpretation,” and I gave you five things that we are to consider when interpreting the Bible: (1) Consider the context, (2) A literal approach to the Bible, (3) Interpret Scripture with Scripture, (4) Interpret difficult passages in the light of clear passages, and (5) Depend upon the Holy Spirit. Now, when you begin reading through the doctrinal statement of the Seventh-Day Adventists, you would start reading No. 1, No. 2, and No. 3 dealing with the Scriptures, the Trinity, the Father, the Son, and you would say it sounds just like a Christian organization. And dealing with the Holy Spirit, Creation, The Nature of Man, No. 8, The Great Controversy, No. 9, Life, Death, and the Resurrection, No. 10, Experience of Salvation, when you read down through this, you’ll find that they claim to believe in the Trinity, that the Son is eternal – several things that Christians believe. And this is why some believe that they are a Christian church. But when you come down to No. 13 in their doctrinal statement, you’ll find that they claim to be the remnant church, and as you go on through this, you’ll find that under Article 18, they mention Ellen White and her writings, in other words, they hold her up as a prophet. And then in No. 20, the Sabbath, and then No. 24 is dealing with Christ’s ministry in the heavenly sanctuary, Daniel chapter 8, and dealing with the 2300 days that they count from to document what they believe to be the second coming of Jesus Christ. So this is from their own Web site. This is not speculation about what they believe.
Again, as we consider the Seventh-Day Adventists, you’ll notice in the article that I gave you this morning some of the membership, I would imagine probably today about 15 million people. You’ll see on here the names of their radio and television broadcasts, their publications, and how they promote their particular organization. They place great emphasis upon prophecy, the book of Daniel and the book of Revelation. This is intriguing to people, especially when you tell people that you’ve got all the answers for the end times; in other words, you know when Christ is coming, you know who the Antichrist is. You’ve got all these details. And they claim to have these answers, and as a matter of fact, from reading their material, I get the indication that they even know how many hairs are on the nose of Daniel’s beast. But, anyway, they claim to have all the answers for the end times and claim to be the remnant church. Now, if you were to go to one of their Revelation seminars or if you were to view the 14 hours of DVDs like I did last year, what would happen is they carry you – and there’s some truth that is taught in these; don’t get me wrong. I mean, you’ve got to have truth in this or nobody is going to pick it up. You know, there’s truth mixed with error, and you know for yourself that it only takes a little drop of poison in your oatmeal to take you out. Amen? It just takes a little bit. They have some truth that they’ll teach and mix it with error. And these seminars are fascinating to people. Many times in their books and their publications, you’ll not even really know what they believe. You’ll not even know how they exalt Ellen White until you get so far along in the organization. You can go to a Revelation seminar and study Daniel chapter 2 and the beast and the four beasts in Daniel chapter 7, and then you get into chapter 8, and they begin dealing with the second coming of the Lord Jesus Christ and things of that nature, and then finally they tell you, “We’re Seventh-Day Adventists. We’re the remnant church, and unless you’re a part of our church, you cannot get into Heaven.” Now, I’ve got enough of their material laying here on the pulpit to prove to you that they do believe they are the remnant church of the last days.
Let’s read Isaiah 8:20 again: “To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them.” Now, as we consider the Seventh-Day Adventists, they do like to portray themselves as a mainline Christian denomination. They want to be accepted as that. As I mentioned a moment ago, they have many outreaches: The Voice of Prophecy, Faith for Today, It is Written, The Quiet Hour, Amazing Facts. Their printing press, Pacific Press, produces their materials, which would include the colorful children’s books that you often see in medical and dentist offices and even in some church libraries across our land. They also have the Clear Word Version Bible published in 1994. They also produce their own study Bible with quotes by Ellen White as inspired commentary.
A Little Bit of History
Again, a few of these are quotes and some are just my own words here. Seventh-Day Adventism came about in the mid 1800s and was established by 1860. They sprang up in the mid 1800s under a man named William Miller, who lived from 1782 to 1849, and it was later propagated by Ellen G. White. Now, this movement sprang up from the second Great Awakening when a reemphasis was placed on the second advent of Jesus Christ. This was rampant in Britain and on the European continent and across America. William Miller, a Baptist preacher, predicted the end of the world in 1844. He began in 1843, but I’m just kind of summarizing some things here this evening. He predicted the end of the world in 1844 with Christ’s coming, and when Christ did not appear, there was a great – it’s called actually “The Great Disappointment” to the followers of the Millerites, and William Miller actually later apologized to his followers and said he was wrong about the date of Christ’s coming. But one little flock insisted that the date was right but that Christ did not come to the earth but He entered into the Holy of Holies in the heavenly sanctuary to begin what they called “The Investigative Judgment.” And this doctrine was received and it was endorsed by Ellen White. William Miller apologized for getting the date wrong, but there was a remnant in this movement that said this was not wrong. Hiram Edson said that the date did not refer to the second coming but rather to Jesus cleansing the heavenly sanctuary, which he called The Investigative Judgment. He taught that Jesus entered into the Holy of Holies in Heaven to complete the final atonement for humanity. Then another man by the name of Joseph Bates, another Millerite, became convinced that the holy day of the week was Saturday, the Sabbath, which is borrowed from the Seventh-Day Baptist, and that’s where the Sabbath observance came about in this organization.
From 1844 to 1851 this group taught the shut-door doctrine based on Jesus’ parable of the ten virgins. Anyone who had not accepted the Adventist message by the time Jesus entered into the Holy of Holies – this would be 1844, October the 22nd – they were shut out permanently as the five foolish virgins, cut off and no hope of eternal life. Ellen White taught that if any Adventist had not been brought through the Millerite experience, it was too late to be saved. Now, obviously, they had to lighten up on that as the years went on. They’ve had to change doctrines much over the years.
Now, let me read a very familiar passage from Revelation chapter 22, the last few verses of this chapter. I’m going to be reading verses 18 and 19: “For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book.” Now, remember the passage in Isaiah 8, verse 20: “If they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them.” Revelation 22:18 says not to add to the Word of God, and verse 19 goes on to say, “And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book,” a warning given to anyone who would add to God’s Word or who would take away from God’s Word.
The Marks of a Cult
We have a little article in the library. I didn’t write it. It’s been around here for probably 15 years or maybe longer, and it has to do with the marks of a cult. I hope most of you have seen it. It has to do with addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division; in other words, the marks of a cult is adding to God’s Word, subtracting from the Person of Christ, multiplying the requirements of salvation and, number 4, dividing the followers’ loyalty. You ask, “What is a cult?” A cult is anything that veers away from orthodoxy. When we speak of orthodox, we’re speaking of that which is consistent with well-tested Bible Christianity over the last 2,000 years. And so we find that Seventh-Day Adventists have had a problem with the Person and the work of the Lord Jesus Christ, and we find that they have set dates. Did not Jesus Christ say no man knoweth the hour nor the day? They have set dates based upon Daniel 8, verse 14. And even though the leader of this movement, who finally separated himself, admitted that he was wrong, some of the followers kept saying, “No, you’re not wrong. It’s just that Christ didn’t come to the earth. What He did is He went into the Holy of Holies in Heaven to bring about atonement for the sins of people upon the earth.”
So the Seventh-Day Adventists have set dates, which is contrary to Scripture, and number 2, they believe that they are the remnant church. Ladies and gentlemen, tonight we are assembled together here in this local church, and what we’re trying to do here in this local church is to serve God and we’re trying to be pleasing to God. But we don’t believe that we’re the only ones who are right. We believe that there are many saved folks out there even in other denominations, and we do not believe that we are the only ones that have the truth. You don’t have to be a part of this church to go to Heaven. Amen? You don’t even have to be a part of this church to be right with God in any way. We’re just trying to serve God as a local body in this area. But Seventh-Day Adventists believe that they are the remnant church, and they base that belief upon passages like Revelation 12:17: “And the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.” They believe that they’re the remnant seed, they’re the remnant church, and they’re the only ones that are truly keeping the commandments of God. They believe that they are the only ones that will avoid the mark of the beast; that is, once you receive the mark of the beast, you will be damned eternally, according to the Bible, and they believe that Sunday worship in the last days is going to be the mark of the beast.
So Seventh-Day Adventists believe they’re the remnant church, and they believe that other churches are satanic and corrupt and apostate. This is in their doctrine and you must accept this, according to them, to join the SDA church. I’m going to call them Seventh-Day Adventists and SDA for short. Ellen White said, “Satan has taken full possession of the churches. This is a spiritual gift.” They also believe even our prayers are an abomination to God. So first of all, they’re date-setters; secondly, they believe they are the true church and, number 3, even though in some areas they’ll try to downplay this a little bit until you get sucked into it, they believe that Ellen White was a prophet, and they consider her writings as inspired. We know that only Scripture is inspired. But they consider her writings as inspired and claim that she had the spirit of prophecy, and they base that on Revelation chapter 19, verse 10. That passage speaks of the spirit of prophecy. So they accept Ellen White’s writings as inspired counsel from the Lord. They would quote her as you and I would quote the Apostle Paul. And here’s a quote from Ministry Magazine of October 1981. As far as I know, this has never been retracted. It says, “We believe the revelation and inspiration of both the Bible and Ellen White’s writings to be of equal quality. The superintendance of the Holy Spirit was just as careful and thorough in one case as in the other.”
Ellen G. White
Now, let’s talk about Ellen White for a few moments because not only is their doctrine of Sabbath-keeping really important to them, but the doctrine of Investigative Judgment is also very important to them. Their whole denomination is built around the theory of Christ’s coming in 1844, but this cult is also built around Ellen G. White. She lived from 1827 to 1915, and she is a key figure in the organization. The church professes her visions and writings to be divinely inspired. Her writings are termed as the “spirit of prophecy,” an expression, as I’ve already said, taken from Revelation 19, verse 10. She never held an official title as the head of the SDA church but was one of its founders and acknowledged spiritual leaders. Her writings are equivalent to 17 times the size of the Bible that you hold in your hand. She had claimed to have received more than 3,000 inspired counsels, visions from the Lord between 1844 and 1868. From these visions, she produced over 100,000 handwritten manuscript pages from which were published 54 books. She’s accepted as a prophet. She’s held in high esteem among the SDA. Let me give you a quote or two here. She claimed her messages “were direct from God for guidance and instruction of the church. To reject her writings is to bring judgment.” Try to join their church and say you reject her writings and see if you can get in. There’s no salvation if she is not accepted as infallible. From the 28 Fundamental Beliefs, No. 18 says, “The Gift of Prophecy: One of the gifts of the Holy Spirit is prophecy. The gift is an identifying mark of the remnant church and was manifested in the ministry of Ellen G. White.” Now, this is in their doctrinal statement. Her name is in their doctrinal statement. It goes on to say: “As the Lord’s messenger, her writings are a continuing and authoritative source of truth which provide for the church comfort, guidance, instruction, and correction.” Their 2000 baptismal certification poses the question to which the candidate must answer yes. Question 8 asks – and I don’t have the exact words for the first part of this. I’ve shuffled it around and misplaced it here, but it basically asks, ‘Do you accept the spiritual gifts and believe that the gift of prophecy is one of the identifying marks of the remnant church?’ You’ll notice that you keep hearing that name over and over – the remnant church. There are certain expressions you’ll hear over and over in their writings. Now, it goes on to say, “If the candidate says yes and is baptized, they soon learn that the gift of prophecy is Ellen G. White’s writings.” Point number 13 has them accepting that the SDA church is the remnant church of Bible prophecy. Again, Ellen G. White is esteemed very highly among them.
In 1 Corinthians chapter 14 beginning in verse 34, we have these words: “Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience, as also saith the law. 35And if they will learn any thing, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a shame for women to speak” – that is, speak with authority like teaching and preaching and so forth – “in the church.” Verse 37, “If any man think himself to be a prophet, or spiritual, let him acknowledge that the things that I write unto you” – what’s the next few words? – “are the commandments of the Lord.” I’m going to mention a few other things about Ellen G. White, but if you’re taking notes tonight and you want to find out about false prophets, read Deuteronomy 18, verses 20 through 22, and Deuteronomy 13, verses 1 through 10, and you’ll find out that if somebody claims to be a prophet – I don’t claim to be one, but if they claim to be a prophet and they give a prophecy and that prophecy does not come to pass, they’re a false prophet, period.
Now, I want you to listen to some of the failed prophecies of Ellen G. White. This is written in Early Writings, page 75. She prophesied that old Jerusalem would not be built. This is in 1800. She also said that she would be alive at Christ’s coming. She died in July of 1915. In 1862 she predicted the downfall of America. She said the United States would be humbled into dust by England during the Civil War. This is from Testimonies for the Church, Vol. 1, page 259. She claimed to have traveled to various planets that had inhabitants, met Enoch, and saw angels using golden gate passes to go in and out of Heaven. She believes certain races of people were a result of sexual relations between man and animal. She called it amalgamation. She believed that Christ would return before slavery was abolished (Early Writings, pages 35 and 276). She believed that Adventists living in 1856 would be alive at the Rapture (Testimonies for the Church, Vol. 3, pp. 131 & 132). And there are many more false prophecies. She endorsed, as I said a moment ago, the false prophecy of William Miller that Christ would return in 1843 and 1844. He repented, but she did not. “The SDA in early days denied the Trinity” – and I’m quoting – “but now they accept it. However, they have leftovers from this heresy.” Ellen G. White wrote in Patriarchs and Prophets, page 761: “He,” in reference to Jesus, “was revealed to them as the Angel of Jehovah, the Captain of the Lord of Hosts, Michael the Archangel.” In Daniel chapter 10, verse 13, we know that Michael is one of the chief princes and Jesus is the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. She plagiarized other authors in most of her writings, and the church finally had to admit this, but all they said was, “Well, there’s no copyright” and things of that nature, but they finally had to admit that a large portion of her writings is plagiarized.
Baptism & Salvation
Now, let me give you a quote from what Seventh-Day Adventists believe on baptism: “Christ made it clear that he required baptism of those who wished to become part of his church’s spiritual kingdom, and baptized believers entered into the passion experience of the Lord. Baptism also marks a person’s entrance into Christ’s spiritual kingdom. It unites the new believers to Christ. Through baptism, the Lord adds the new disciple to the body of believers, His body, the church. Then they are members of God’s family.” Seventh-Day Adventists have a total works-based salvation. Now, you know in this church here we preach that salvation is a free gift through the blood of Jesus Christ, and at the same time, we preach on holiness for those who are saved by the grace of God to walk with God. We don’t mingle those together. Salvation is a gift, and it’s in Christ, as I preached to you my first point in my sermon this morning. It’s in Christ. It’s nowhere else. It’s through his blood. It’s by grace through faith. It’s through Jesus Christ. Salvation is a gift, and it must be received as a gift. Now, we preach to those who have received that gift, “Hey, now that we have this gift, let’s live for the Lord, and let me show you how to do that from Scripture.” Adventists don’t believe that. They believe that salvation is earned through their deeds and their works. They have no real assurance of salvation. According to 1 John chapter 5, verse 13, we can know that we are saved. I can put my head on the pillow tonight and know I’m saved. They cannot do that.
I’m not going to quote these, but I’ve got one, two, three quotes by Ellen G. White right here in my hand talking about how to get into Heaven, and it’s through faith and works. They do not have true assurance. Romans 4, verses 3 through 5, deals with salvation and how even Abraham was saved, but in Romans 8:1, we have these words: “There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.” Salvation is in Christ. There is no condemnation to those who are in Christ. And speaking of Christ, turn with me to Hebrews chapter 7. The Person and work of Christ is very important, and Seventh-Day Adventists teach that Jesus Christ is Michael the Archangel. You’ll notice with me as we come to Hebrews chapter 7, we are to hold the highest view of the Person of the Lord Jesus Christ. They do not even really consider Christ’s impeccability. Ellen G. White said, “Christ took upon His sinless nature our sinful nature. Christ took human nature and bore the infirmities and degeneracy of the race. He took our nature and this deteriorating condition.” And this is taken from one of her books; in other words, quoting from their writings basically saying that Christ acquired a sinful nature. Now, as we come to the book of Hebrews, we see that the Lord Jesus Christ – I’m going to go to chapter 7, reading one verse just for time’s sake because I need to keep moving here. We see here in verse 26 the highest view of the Lord given to us in the Bible. In verse 26, talking about the Lord Jesus Christ: “For such an high priest became us, who is holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners, and made higher than the heavens,” a great and high view of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
The Investigative Judgment
Now, let’s come to one of the doctrines that this organization is built around, and it has to do with Daniel 8 and the supposed timing of the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ. I would be happy to come back and deal with these individually. This is an overview. We could spend weeks on this. We could come back and go through the whole chapter in Daniel 8. It’s not too complicated. Many try to complicate it. But I want you to understand that The Investigative Judgment – remember that term? Every time they speak, nearly every article they write has Daniel 8. I’ve got several of their magazines laying right here in front of me, and nearly every one of these magazines are centered around The Investigative Judgment that they said began in 1844, October the 22nd. Now, what is all this about? I’m going to be reading in Daniel chapter 8. I want you to understand that The Investigative Judgment comes from the failed prophecy of William Miller that Christ would come to earth on October the 22nd, 1844, and even though he repented of that and apologized for that, the movement went on and built upon that date.
I’m going to read just a few quotes to you about The Investigative Judgment, but this is, by the way, in their doctrinal statement, Article No. 24, if you want to look it up. This is from their official Web site. You can read about this. Now, according to the SDA theology, beginning on October the 22nd, 1844, Christ entered upon the judgment phase of His ministry whereby He blots out sins –beginning in 1844. Keep that in mind. Now, I’m not going to take the time to do this right now, but you ought to just read the Clear Word Version of the Bible and read what they say about Daniel 8, verse 14. Now, I’m going on to quote about The Investigative Judgment. This is how they’re saved. Their whole theology, their whole system of salvation is built around the doctrine of The Investigative Judgment. If you read their material, listen to their preachers, you’ll hear them say this over and over and over again. They believe that Christ entered the heavenly Holy of Holies on October the 22nd, 1844, to begin the second phase of His atoning ministry. This involves the examination of the dead and living to determine if they’re worthy of being a part of the first resurrection. We know that Jesus, according to Hebrews 1, Hebrews 6, Hebrews 7, Hebrews 10, Acts chapter 1 and other places, that Christ ascended back into Heaven, and He made atonement for us on the cross, and He’s now our intercessor in Heaven. But He’s not now making atonement. The blood was shed in A.D. 33, and the Bible says in Romans 5:11: “And not only so, but we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement” – not in 1844. We have now received the atonement. Do you know what this means? This is the foundational doctrine and major heresy of the SDA, the process of blotting out sins from 1844 until the second advent of the Lord Jesus Christ. Very interesting when you consider what they believe about this.
Now, I want to give another quote or two here. Again, I said to you they have no assurance of salvation. Oh, they’ll tell you they do, but they don’t. Now, here’s just a few quotes again from different sources. I’ve got, again, The Great Controversy and other books laying up here. We could give several quotes. As a matter of fact, I’ve got one page here that has several quotes on it just on The Investigative Judgment by Ellen G. White and others as well. But “In 1844” – this is one quote – “He began to investigate the records of human works." No, He didn’t. And another one says, “The Investigative Judgment is to see who is worthy of eternal life, to look at their works and to see how they measure up,” and Christ began doing this in 1844, according to their theology. And that’s a lie of the devil. He didn’t begin doing anything in 1844. Our atonement and our salvation was secured at the cross. All who receive Christ can be saved. Again, throughout the book of Hebrews, Hebrews chapter 1, verse 3, He ascended up. Jesus did not wait until 1844 to enter into the Holy of Holies and to Heaven, neither is He still making atonement in Heaven. Hebrews 10, verses 11 through 15, is clear that one sacrifice forever took care of the sins of mankind – Christ’s blood in A.D. 33.
Daniel 8:14 is the verse that the entire cult is built around. It says, “And he said unto me, Unto two thousand and three hundred days; then shall the sanctuary be cleansed.” Now, I don’t have time to read the entire chapter this evening, but if you’ll ask me, we’ll come back and I’ll teach through this whole chapter any time that you want. It’s not a complicated chapter. But William Miller took this passage and he said the 2300 days, 2,300 days, are really not days but they’re years. And he began counting from 457 B.C. when Israel went back to rebuild the temple and rebuild the city, and he counted 2300 years, not days as the Bible says, and he said, “That brings you to 1844 when the temple will be cleansed. Christ will come back to this earth.” Well, it didn’t happen, and the great disappointment came about, and that small remnant and people’s names I mentioned, including Ellen White, started building upon this, and they said, “Well, what it really means” – don’t you love that statement? “What it really means is that Christ didn’t come to the earth, but He went from one compartment in Heaven to the other compartment in Heaven, the Holy of Holies, to begin The Investigative Judgment and to see whether your works are worthy to get you into Heaven.” And Christ began cleansing the sanctuary in Heaven, and they take the tabernacle of the Old Testament, the temple of the Old Testament, the patterns, and run back and forth from the Old Testament to Hebrews to try to work all of that out.
Now, here’s the problem with this whole thing. The context of Daniel 8 has nothing to do with the church age. I want you to understand that when you come to Daniel chapter 8, this chapter is dealing with the Medo-Persian and the Grecian kingdoms, and the little horn in verse 9 is not an antichrist. The little horn here in verse 9 is talking about a king that came out of the area of Syria. Notice in verse 9: “And out of one of them came forth a little horn, which waxed exceeding great, toward the south, and toward the east, and toward the pleasant land.” Now, this is not the same as the little horn in Daniel 7, by the way. And then we come down to verse 11: “Yea, he magnified himself even to the prince of the host, and by him the daily sacrifice was taken away, and the place of his sanctuary was cast down. 12And an host was given him against the daily sacrifice by reason of transgression, and it cast down the truth to the ground; and it practised, and prospered. 13Then I heard one saint speaking, and another saint said unto that certain saint which spake, How long shall be the vision concerning the daily sacrifice, and the transgression of desolation, to give both the sanctuary and the host to be trodden under foot? 14And he said unto me, Unto two thousand and three hundred days; then shall the sanctuary be cleansed.” Do you know what this passage is talking about? Listen to me, church. The context of this passage is referring to the earthly sanctuary in Jerusalem at this time and not the heavenly sanctuary. The 2,300 days are days and not years. And the sanctuary was desecrated by the activities of the little horn of verse 9, and the little horn of verse 9 is Antiochus Epiphanes, the Assyrian who outlawed Jewish religion and offered a pig on the altar outside the temple two centuries before Jesus Christ came. The cleansing of the temple took place under Judas Maccabees in December around 165 A.D. In other words, this passage has nothing to do with 1844. It has nothing to do with a heavenly sanctuary. The entire chapter, the entire context has to do with an earthly sanctuary that was in Jerusalem. It’s a passage taken out of context and built upon, and an entire denominational cult is centered around this one verse.
The Scapegoat Theory
This thing goes a little bit further than that. Because of The Investigative Judgment theory and theology that Seventh-Day Adventists teach, you also have the scapegoat theology or theory. And you ask, “What do you mean by that?” The SDA believes that our sins will be placed upon Satan when Jesus Christ comes again. Have you ever heard that before? And they take that from Leviticus chapter 16 where there are two goats, one is sacrificed and dies and the other one, hands are laid upon its head, sins are confessed, and it’s let go to go into the wilderness to never be seen again. Both of these goats represent the sacrifice of Christ. Christ died for our sins, and still at the same time, He rose again. Our sins have been paid for. They’ve been put away. And they say that one of the goats represents Satan, and our sins must be placed upon him whenever Jesus Christ comes again. You say, “You’ve got to be kidding me.” Listen, Ellen G. White said, “When Christ, by virtue of His own blood, removes the sins of His people from the heavenly sanctuary at the close of His ministration, He will place them upon Satan, who, in execution of the judgment, must bear the final penalty.” And then she also said, “So Christ will place all these sins upon Satan, the originator and instigator of sin. So Satan, bearing the guilt of all the sins which he has caused God’s people to commit, will be for a thousand years confined to the earth, which will then be desolate.” This is from The Great Controversy, page 485. Ellen White says all men’s sins are placed on Satan. I’m sorry, but my iniquities were placed upon Jesus Christ. He died for my sins according to Isaiah 53, and Hebrews 9:28, Christ once suffered to bear the sins of many. Ephesians chapter 1, we are forgiven of sins through Jesus Christ. I’m not depending upon the devil to take away my sins. I’m depending upon Jesus Christ.
Now, notice what God says in His Word. He says very clearly here in 1 Peter chapter 2, verses 23 and 24: “Who, when he was reviled, reviled not again; when he suffered, he threatened not; but committed himself to him that judgeth righteously: 24Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed.” Our salvation is based upon Christ, and our sins were put to His account, not Satan’s.
Now, they have a few other doctrines, and I’m going to just briefly go through them, and that’s basically all I’ve done. We could spend an entire hour upon each one of these statements that I’ve made tonight or these doctrinal teachings of the SDA. We will do that sometime if need be. But they teach the doctrine of soul sleep. They teach soul sleep for the saints, and that means that when a person who is supposedly saved dies, that death is a state of unconsciousness, which means that death ends human existence; the soul becomes nonexistent at death. Now, I’m not even going to quote from them on this, because most people know that the Seventh-Day Adventists believe this. But when we come to the Bible, sleep refers to the body and not the soul when we read through especially the New Testament. And there are passages in Philippians 1, verses 21 through 23, and other passages that deal with the saints of God. Paul made the statement that it would be far better for him to depart and to be with Christ. He wasn’t talking about resurrection; he was talking about death, through death. In Revelation 6, verses 9, 10, and 11, there are some saints in that passage who have been martyred. They’re at the altar and they’re wearing robes, and they’re crying out and wanting God to take vengeance upon them who are on the earth. I don’t understand all the details about those who are deceased, but the Bible doesn’t say that they are unconscious and they do not exist. Seventh-Day Adventists believe that when you die as a believer, you just go to the grave and that’s it until the resurrection. Well, that’s not really what the Bible teaches. In Matthew chapter 10 we have these words in verse 28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul.” Would you not agree that there’s a difference between the body and soul? They say no. I’ve got a quote here by them talking about “the soul of man represents the whole man and not a particular part independent of the other component parts of man’s nature. The soul cannot exist apart from the body, for man is a unit. Man rests in the tomb until the resurrection. Then at the first resurrection, the righteous come forth immortalized at the call of Christ and then enter into life everlasting.” Well, according to this verse that we’re reading right now, Matthew 10:28 – unless I’m reading it wrong – there’s a difference between the body and the soul. Amen? Verse 28 says, “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul.” Well, can you kill the body and not kill the soul? Yes. Verse 28 goes on to say, “but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.”
Annihilation of the Wicked
Not only do they teach soul sleep for the believers, but they teach the annihilation of the wicked; in other words, they do away with the doctrine of eternal judgment. And, again, Matthew 10:28 is telling us that there is a hell. Mark 9, verses 43 and 44, talks about hell fire that shall never be quenched, and 2 Thessalonians 1:8 talks about the vengeance of God, the punishment of everlasting destruction. Revelation 14:10, 11 and 12, one of their favorite passages is dealing with destruction and torment and those kinds of things. Well, in Matthew 25, reading just two verses, verse 41 says, “Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels.” Notice He talks about everlasting fire. And then we see in verse 46: “And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal.” The Bible speaks of eternal fire and eternal life, everlasting fire, punishment, and everlasting life. I’m going to tell you something. I’m not going to mess with the Bible. I don’t understand a soul burning throughout eternity. I don’t understand it, but the Bible says there is an everlasting fire, there is eternal punishment, and on the other side, there’s eternal life. The same words are used for the lost that are used for those who are saved. If God says I have everlasting life, I have eternal life, then I believe that that life will never end. And on the other side, if He says there’s everlasting punishment, eternal fire, then I have to believe on this side that that will never end. Do I understand that? No. Absolutely I do not understand it, but I believe what the Bible says, and I’m not going to accommodate my own fleshly will and desires just because I don’t understand the Bible and change the Bible. And if I were going to Hell, I would want to air condition it too or get rid of it, wouldn’t you?
The Mark of the Beast
Now, one last thing this evening. I want you to turn with me to Galatians chapter 1, and we’ll close. There has been a lot of discussion about the Sabbath for the last 2,000 years in Christian circles, and I think it’s healthy to study it, to discuss it and so forth – nothing wrong with that. But this is another one of their distinctive doctrines. Two of the main doctrines of the Seventh-Day Adventists is The Investigative Judgment that we just briefly talked about out of Daniel chapter 8 and Sabbath observance; that is, the Sabbath of the Old Testament we find in the Ten Commandments from Friday evening to Saturday evening, they say, must be observed. They believe that those who worship on Sunday are in error and in the last days will bear the mark of the beast, which they consider, again, to be Sunday worship. Now, you and I know that according to Revelation 14:10 and 11, once a person takes the mark of the beast, it’s over. Whatever it is, it’s over. Here’s a book – I know you have seen it. It’s called National Sunday Law. They’ve handed out millions of these, believing that there will be laws that will be passed in the last days against Sabbath worship and for Sunday worship, and they are the remnant church. They are the only ones who are truly God’s people, especially in the latter days. That means you must become a part of them in order to get into Heaven. If you’re not a part of them, you don’t accept Ellen White’s teaching as being truth and you worship on any other day besides the Sabbath, you’ll end up in Hell.
Here’s a quote taken from this book I have laying right here, The Great Controversy, page 449. It says, “In the last days the Sabbath test will be made plain. When this time comes, anyone who does not keep the Sabbath will receive the mark of the beast and will be kept from Heaven.” Pages 262 and 263, “The divine institution of the Sabbath is to be restored. The delivering of this passage will precipitate a conflict that will involve the whole world. The central issue will be obedience to God’s law and the observance of the Sabbath. Those who reject it will eventually receive the mark of the beast.” On page 605 she states that “the Sabbath observance would be the line of distinction in the final test that will separate God’s end time people who receive the seal of God and are saved from those who receive the mark of the beast.” She also says, “I saw that the holy Sabbath is and will be the separating wall between the true Israel of God and unbelievers.” This is from her Early Writings, page 33. She also wrote of “some Adventists failing to understand that Sabbath observance was of sufficient importance to draw the line between the people of God and unbelievers.” You see, Ellen White was well known to have visions at particular times when she felt like they were needed. I’ll give you an example. When William Miller predicted the coming of Christ – first 1843, changed it to 1844, October 22, 1844 – and it didn’t happen, well, another man came along and said, “Well, it really did happen. He just didn’t come visibly to the earth.” Another one came along and said, “That’s right.” Then they began building this doctrine that they call The Investigative Judgment. And it was real convenient around this time that this woman – now, we’ve already read in 1 Corinthians what God says about women and prophets and preaching and things of that nature. But it was real convenient around this time for Ellen G. White to have another vision. She had hundreds of them, and she confirmed that these men were right about The Investigative Judgment.
Well, after this movement got started and a man by the name of Joseph Bates introduced the Sabbath observance, Ellen White just happened to have another vision. How convenient. In other words, it’s direct communication from God, just like the Pope. So here’s her vision. This is a supposed vision, now. This is what she said: “In Heaven,” she said, “she saw the table of stone on which the Ten Commandments were inscribed. To her amazement, the fourth commandment requiring observance of the seventh day was in the very center of the ten precepts with a soft halo of light encircling it.” How beautiful. Isn’t that wonderful? If you had that vision, they’d still be laughing at you. But about 15 million believe she had that vision. This stuff is out of Hell.
Now, notice in Galatians chapter 1. We’re going to close right here. You’re welcome to look at some of the material. You can look at the books, The Great Controversy, The Search for the True Church. You can also look at the chart laying here. This is their chart – “Earth’s History from Creation to the New Earth” – and you can see here down at the bottom of this chart the 2300 days, which they say are not days but years – changing the Word of God – and you can see how they’ve worked all this out. And then here’s the doctrinal statement, and you can also see in these magazines charts dealing, again, with the supposed 2300 years. Again, if you can prove Ellen G. White to be of the devil and you can prove them wrong with their Investigative Judgment and Christ entering into the holy sanctuary, the Holy of Holies, in October of 1844, then basically you destroy the entire cult denomination.
Now, notice as we close. Reading from Galatians 1, verse 6, Paul is writing to the church after it had been established for a while – the churches, I should say, because there were a number of churches that he writes to in the Galatia area. And he said in verse 6, “I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel: 7Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ.” Pervert means to turn, to twist it, to change it. Then he said in the next two verses, “8But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be” – what? – “accursed. 9As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed.” I’m saying to you that even though when you begin reading the doctrinal statement here of the Seventh-Day Adventists, it looks almost like any Christian denomination until you start getting down into Articles No. 13, No. 18, No. 20, No. 24. Then you start seeing the heresy. And then when you begin reading their writings and their publications, their books, their magazines, the articles, you see very clearly where they’re coming from. And don’t be deceived by their beautiful, colorful children’s books in the dentist’s office and the doctor’s office or at the libraries. This organization is deceiving millions and carrying them down the road to a devil’s Hell.