I was raised a Catholic but my faith was a lukewarm experience. At age 17 I met a young adventist man and during our friendship we debated his faith which led to my baptism into the SDA church at age 19 in 1975. I took hold of the SDA doctrines with great faith and renewal in my life. We married in 1975. Many a sabbath we'd come home from church and my husband would watch T.V. This upset me greatly and I would always challenge what he was doing causing my arguments. In the end I stopped challenging him and quietly continued to live my adventist rules. I often wandered how come I was so lucky to be brought into the truth and remnant church. At the same time I was perplexed that in comparison to the small SDA elite membership there was a world population of billions that would be lost.
Twenty-two years later, I was not looking to leave my church, indeed I was innocently happy in my church and had accepted my husbands lukewarm church life. We had no children. In 1995 while at work as a nurse, I was caring for an elderly man who had a huge stack of The Plain Truth magazines. He offered them to me but I declined the offer only taking one to keep him happy. Of all the magazines I could have picked from, the one I unknowingly chose, was about the Old, the New and the Covenants. GOD was in ACTION. I had never heard anything about covenants, now I had questions. I began years of quiet, personal study, reading and researching with lots of prayer. It was the first time I had read the whole bible without preconceived beliefs, I took my adventist reading glasses off. Research answered questions, but led to more questions and the bible always delivered. Scripture interprets scripture.
My new knowledge and beliefs emerged and I did not know that what was happening to me, was happening to many SDA's globally. I did not get a computer till 2000 and did not know how to use the web till 2001. I was absolutely amazed at how my research and new biblical knowledge was so affirmed on the relevant websites. I was not influenced by the web into my beliefs and now I knew that if others could study and come to the same beliefs as myself, that I had not deluded myself in this walk.
During my GOD given walk, I came to know Jesus as my living, personal saviour, in a deep, loving, mutual relationship.Prior to this my relationship was one of only knowing about Jesus. There was no heart relationship, my relationship was centered around my righteousness in being in the truth, keeping the sabbath and honouring the prophet that started all this. I praise GOD that when all this crashed, I was still left with GOD. I know of SDA's, who after having their faith destroyed in ellen white and church doctrine, left church to enter a secular life with no GOD.
I found that mental conditioning was hard to ignore, I still continued going to church. I felt I should at least give the SDA church a chance to respond to my studies. I asked the current minister of our small local semi rural church to visit and go thru my studies with me, I told him I no longer believed it was necessary to keep the sabbath. He cancelled our arranged appointment and never rescheduled as promised. I asked another minister, (retired) he came and sat with me at my table with all my books and notes. He graciously affirmed my studies and my walk with GOD. After that meeting I was in a daze, I was truly expecting to be rewired back into adventism and it did not happen. I continued to go to church. Where else could I go after nearly 30 yrs. of mental conditioning. Even though I no longer condemned the practice of Sunday Church, I just could not make the transition.
In approx. 2002, I began written communication with an elder of a city church. We lived 50min. drive away from this church so it was difficult to meet mid week for studies. I wrote of my biblical verses and new beliefs and he wrote back, we debated by mail until he no longer answered. I started missing church some sabbaths and this was difficult on my relationships with my genuine adventist friends, who tolerated my new beliefs.
My last sabbath at church, an elder gave the sermon (he was good friends with the elder I had been writing to) The sermon was about a document on the internet out lining a 10 point plan to deal with sabbath keepers and SDA's. He was carefull to state that the source had not been verified, but proceeded to treat the document as legislation.
The main points of the sermon
During the service there was complete breathless silence. I was appauled at the tactics of this service and my friends and husband looked at me with daggers and would not speak to me.
I never went back to church again. I wrote a letter to the elder I had been writing to and told him of my disappointment of this service. I sent with the letter a photocopy of an article in the Australasian Record (July 10th. 1999 pg.5) advising membership that the document, re: Catholic plan to deal with SDA's was false and should not be circulated. I also questioned the assumption that the 10 commandments were eternal and asked for biblical verses that stated the 10 Commandments were separate from the Old Covenant. I quoted Heb 9:4 where it states that inside the ark of the covenant were housed (1) the jar of manna (2) Aarons rod that budded (3) the stone tablets of the 10 C, in that descending order. This would make the assumption, of the 10C being inside the ark, are therefore eternal, incongruent. That would mean the manna should still be falling daily and the levitical priesthood and temple service should still be going today.
As I pondered about the statement that the 10C are eternal, I learned that in the Gospels (try Matt 22:23-30) The sadducees questioned Jesus about the ressurection and the woman with the seven husbands "whose wife will she be". Jesus answered "at the ressurection, we will not marry, we will be like the angels". I concluded if there is no marriage in heaven, then we do not need the commandment against adultery for eternity. In Rev 21 :23-25 and Rev 22 :5 if the New Jerusalem has no night and it is one permanent day, I question, how will we know the 7th day cycle?
There is so much to study that adventism chooses to stay away from. You might conclude as an adventist, to study without ellen whites guideance for truth, is dangerous and a deceptive tool, for satan to lead you away from truth. Consider Acts 17: 10-11 Here Paul commends the Bereans for checking scripture every day to see if what PAUL was saying was true. When applying this principle to ellen white there are many discrepancies. In John16 :13 it says the Holy Spirit will guide you into truth. If the Holy Spirit will do this, then, WHO is ellen white?
I look back at my adventist life, and what I thought was the ultimate, I now know was crippled. I burden for my SDA friends and husbands family. They are so locked into their faith and its false self righteousness, even if scripture is clear, in opposition to their belief, they continue to re interpret scripture with SDA reading glasses and I can't reach out to them, I've tried so hard.
But GOD is good, he is my comfort. He has led me to a group of Baptists that share in fellowship and bible study mid week. They love the pure word of GOD and live the word daily with great desire. They have taken me in and are nurturing me. In their patience, I suspect I will one day join them in Sunday Church on a regular basis. GOD answers prayers. My husband has taken hold of this GOD given walk with me and has conquered the clutches of adventism. He is discovering a Jesus he never knew. There is so much more I could share, it would be a book. But I give GOD all praise and thanks for his love, mercy and salvation thru Jesus. I praise GOD that my salvation is not dependant on me. I praise GOD that there is nothing I can do to save myself, except surrender in faith to Jesus who has done it all for me.
Come Lord Jesus come!
If anyone wants to write to me I would be happy to trade email addresses for comunication.
May GOD bless you.
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