Do You Qualify The Statements Of Yeshua? – Or, The Trouble With Ellen!
Love, if I may paraphrase Sha’ul [Paul] in 1 Corinthians 13, is other-enriching.
The apostle to the goyim (Gentiles) went on to add;
“Our knowledge is fragmentary, incomplete and imperfect,
And our teaching is also fragmentary, incomplete and imperfect.
But when the Totality comes,
The incomplete and imperfect will vanish away —
Become antiquated, void and superseded.
For now we are looking into a mirror
That gives only a blurred reflection
Of reality as a riddle wrapped in an enigma,
But then when Perfection comes we shall see in reality
And Face to Face!
Now I know imperfectly;
But then I shall know and understand fully and clearly,
Even in the same manner
As I have been fully and clearly known
And understood by God”
(Tentative BRI Version).
Our views, our insights, our recognitions, our perceptions of our world, society, culture, environment, politics, traditions and religious values are grasped tenaciously because we believe our comprehension and interpretation of them to be true — to be authentic. But what IF we happen to be wrong? What IF we have been deceived into an acceptance of false values, erron-eous ideas, and have opted for incomplete perceptions based on biased research findings? What then?
A prolific author of the late nineteenth/early twentieth century penned these words: “The more closely the Scriptures are studied, the more clearly we shall understand the true character of our thoughts and actions. But thousands put the Bible on one side for the same reason that Ahab hated Micaiah. Because it prophesies evil against the sinner, they claim they can find objections and contradictions in God’s Word. While professing to be open to conviction, they allow prejudice to hold sway, and refuse to see the truth which that Word reveals” (Ellen G. White, Youth’s Instructor, June 10, 1897, quoted from White’s comments on 1 Kings 22, The Seventh Day Adventist Bible Commentary, 7A, 1957, 1036  Emphasis mine through-out article).
Now, some of our readers may have heard of Mrs E. G. White (known affectionately in some quarters as Mrs Egg White), and certainly she had some of that on her face when she penned those words! For, despite the fact that her church believes her writings are the testimony of “Jesus” and the “Spirit of Prophecy” (mentioned in Revelation 19.10), and therefore of equal standing to the Bible, nevertheless, if you compare the Biblical account of Ahab and Micaiah with what this woman deemed suitable to reproduce in her own account of this story, you will be aghast at her methods of supernatural selection (see The Story of Prophets & Kings, 1917, 195,196).
Ellen White, accepted as an unerring prophetess by her many adherents, could not bear the true revelation of the sovereignty of the LORD God, in relation to evil, as revealed in the story of Ahab and Micaiah in 1 Kings 22. Instead of facing the truth square-on and admitting God’s absolute sovereignty in human affairs as understood in the Jewish thoughtform which gave us the Bible in the first place, this lady decided to avoid the question of the origin of evil as it related to the plan, purpose and intent of God. Instead of acknowledging God’s Word she accepted an ancient myth about “Lucifer’s Fall Through Pride” and thus covered the correct knowledge of the Scripture, and prophetic truth, from her church’s sight. [Click here to read read the BRI Theological Exposition“Does Satan Lurk in Ezekiel 28?“]. She did the very same thing with the “millennial desolate earth theory.”
Is Our Destiny to Read Pornography in Heaven for 1000 Years?
Although this Work of God has no Adventist connections, some of our readership may happen to be Seventh Day Adventist in theological orientation. I must make this point clear: In no way do I seek to undermine anybody’s personal faith in Yeshua as Lord. Since this Work began in 1981 I have ever and always sought to exalt the faith of the brethren, no matter from what denominational spectrum they may have come. However, truth is truth, and sometimes we cannot “water it down.” Yeshua most certainly never did! So, they might find my comments about Ellen a little disturbing, and they may claim that while they sincerely believe her writings to be divinely inspired, they are not considered to be of equal authority with the Holy Scriptures.
Readers, this is so much horse manure!
Let the SDA church state the truth of the matter! “Nothing is surer than this, that this message [the Gospel] and the visions [of Ellen White] belong together, and stand or fall together” (Review & Herald, Supplement August 14, 1883). Further, her writings ought to “be received, the same as were the messages of the prophets of old. As Samuel was a prophet to Israel in his day, as Jeremiah was a prophet to Israel in the day of captivity, as John the Baptist came as a special messenger of the Lord to prepare the way of Messiah’s appearing, so we believe that Mrs White was a prophet to the church of Christ today. And the same as the messages of the prophets were received in old days, so her messages should be received at present times” (R&H, October 4, 1928). Ellen’s visions were, and still are, a test of fellowship in the SDA denomination. The source of her visions, of course, remains questionable.
I can clearly demonstrate that the primitive Messianic Community of God continued to believe the Jewish concept that the Messiah would come and rule the earth at his Advent. The Christians believed he would reign 1000 years over humanity (admittedly, 1000 years in Jewish thoughtform could simply mean “a perfectly measured long age”). Nevertheless, God’s Torah would go forth from Jerusalem and the world would experience true and lasting peace for the first time in its 6000 “ideal” years of recorded history.
“Jesus” (Yeshua) never once deviated from this theme and expectation, and we have to literally read back into his original “Gospel [message of good news] of the Kingdom of God” the theology of the last 1600 years of perverted church reasoning and ecclesiastical doctrinal rebellion to make him say what he never once intimated. The Gospel of Yeshua, however, did not suit Ellen’s Methodist doctrinal background.
She taught that Christ would return in the clouds over our planet Earth, destroy all the wicked “with the brightness of his coming,” and bind Satan on a desolate Earth for 1000 years.
- Then “Jesus” would take all the good SDA’s up to heaven where they would read pornography for the millennium!
Shocked? I have in my possession Voice of Prophecy Correspondence Course lessons which outline how you will be able to enjoy the bliss of heaven by opening the books and reading WHY Auntie Mabel and Uncle George never got there! You will be able to recount (in a sort of heavenly Internet) the past earthly sojourns of your dearly loved ones — fathers, mothers, sons and daughters, friends — and find out WHY they never got there! You can read all about the personal sins that kept them out of the shining glory of God’s face — and grace!
- Readers, what are our sins still doing in the heavenly books at the Advent of Christ? Aren’t our sins washed away forever — to be remembered no more? The Bible teaches that our sins are not just “covered” (which is what “atonement” was all about) but they are literally washed away. Gone — forever! Or is God just another rotten liar like the early SDA pioneers (including EGW) believed and taught in actuality? After all, they disagreed with the NT teachings that Christ accomplished all the essential factors of salvation and sin at the cross, and when he entered the holy of holies in the heavenly Temple at his ascension. Christ did not wait until 1844 to begin some “Investigative Judgment.” Yet the self-contradictory vision-oriented Ellen White says categorically: “At the close of the 2300 days, in 1844, began the work of investigation and the blotting out of sins” (Great Controversy, 552). It’s high time to get rid of “old wives fables” and return to the true teachings of the living GOD.
Some might “righteously” perceive that my comments are too heavy. Brethren and friends, they’re not heavy enough. Show me please anywhere in the entire Bible where we can locate the “1844 Investigative Judgment” theory. It’s not there. Again, show me anywhere in the entire Bible where we can locate the “desolate earth theory.” It’s not there either! Instead we read that the Messiah is returning to DESTROY those who destroy the earth. He is not returning to destroy the earth, but only those who destroy the earth (Revelation 11.18).
Why don’t we simply believe what we read?
But in something called The Great Controversy Between Christ and Satan we read from page 653 to 661 all about the millennial desolate earth. And how does Ellen present her proofs to establish a coming millennial desolate earth? Here is an example: On page 657 she quotes from Isaiah 24.6. “Because they have transgressed the laws, changed the ordinance, broken the everlasting covenant. Therefore has the curse devoured the earth, and they that dwell therein are desolate: therefore the inhabitants of the earth are burned.” Then she immediately adds her comments “The whole earth appears like a desolate wilderness…”
- BUT SHE STOPPED SHORT OF COMPLETING WHAT ISAIAH WROTE under inspiration of the Ruach haKodesh (holy Spirit, or better, Spirit of Holiness). Isaiah tells us plainly as we complete the reading: “…therefore the inhabitants of the earth are burned, AND FEW MEN LEFT.”
I well recall visiting a Chinese SDA church once, at Strathfield in Sydney in the mid ’70s, and being introduced to the Chinese pastor. A volume of White’s was loaned to me on Evangelism. On page 598 Ellen wrote: “Satan, who is the father of lies, DECEIVED ADAM in a similar way, telling him that he need not obey God, that he would not die if he transgressed the law.”
This revelation of EGW was in stark contrast to Paul’s emphatic assertion in 1 Timothy 2.14: “Adam was NOT the one deceived.” He and his wife then came to visit me, a week or two later, in the hope of getting me to attend services regularly. We spent the next few hours, over dinner, exchanging views about the Bible. I was intending to discuss this obvious false revelation with the pastor, but out of consideration for them I kept my mouth shut. But then he started to insist that the spirit of prophecy was fulfilled only in his beloved prophetess — in her EXCLUSIVELY — although I equally pressed that the end of the age would usher forth in the advent of MANY prophets and prophetesses (at least this was to be the case according to the writings of the Hebrew prophets). But when he tried to convince me that the earth would be desolate for 1000 years (with Satan bound without anyone left to tempt) I challenged him to read Revelation 20.1-3 and to explain to me who were the nations which Satan was not able to deceive during the millennium.
Well, he read that section through. In fact he read it aloud over and over and over, at my persistent urging, and he still couldn’t see to what I was referring. Each time he read the passage I politely asked “Which nations? Weren’t they all destroyed at Messiah’s advent?” Then suddenly it was as if thick sticky-tape had been peeled from his eyes. His wife still appeared confused. He had eventually realised the obvious point and they both exited rather quickly. In fact, he looked as if he was about to pass out. He told me he would be getting back to me on it. Well, that was well over four decades ago and I am still waiting patiently.
Does Yeshua Offer ‘Conditional Immortality’?
Again, I must ask. What if we have been deceived into an acceptance of false values, erroneous ideas, and have opted for incomplete perceptions based on biased research findings? What then?
What if we have been told, as Ellen told her converts, that Yeshua offered us “conditional immortality” instead of eternal life? That is, a Clayton’s salvation — a salvation you have when you don’t have a salvation. What then? Worse still, what if we have believed it?
Yeshua gives us eternal life. It’s already in our possession. It was given to us as a gift of Grace. It was not predicated on our works but on the works of Yeshua the Messiah. Our Lord Yeshua is decidedly NOT a so-called “Indian giver.” It’s not a case of “now you have it, now you don’t.”
But some people read into John 5.24, a passage in which Yeshua assures us of our possession of “THE life” (Gk), what is just not there in the text. They read it like this: “Emphatically, I tell you this. He that hears my word and believes on him that sent me, possesses conditional immortality and comes not into judgment: but is passed out of the state of death unto the life.” (Emphasis is added by me. It does not appear in the Greek text. I will be following this practice throughout the rest of the lecture.)
Again, he didn’t say: “Emphatically, unless I change my mind, I tell you this. He that hears my word and believes on him that sent me, has the chance of possessing everlasting life, and comes not into judgment unless he fails to measure up in his behavioural patterns. He is passed out of the state of death unto the life and may be in danger of going back into the state of death again.”
- We haven’t been called to a life of spiritual snakes and ladders. Climbing up the ladder to heaven, up 5 rungs and then after the dice is thrown, back two because we sinned. Up ten. Back to the beginning because we lost eternal life and somehow have to kick-start all over. And so on. How utterly blasphemous. What contempt we have shown toward God in such an obvious distrust of His word! Yet it’s what a lot of people sincerely believe.
What about John 6.37? How do we read it? Like this perhaps… “All that the Father gives me shall come to me if they exercise their freedom of choice positively, and him that comes to me I will in no wise cast out unless he has committed the unpardonable sin.”
Let’s not stop there. What about John 6.39-40? “And this is the Father’s wishful thinking who has sent me, that of all he has given me I should not lose many but raise some of them up again at the last day. And here is some more wishful thinking of the Father that every one that sees the Son, and believes on him will very likely have everlasting life, and I will raise some of them up on the last day if they qualify.”
John 10.27-29 “The sheep, those that are mine, hear my voice and I know them and they follow me, and I give unto them eternal life not now but later, and they shall never perish except it be in the lake of fire from sinful behaviour, neither shall any snatch them out of my hand except by their own choice. My Father who has given them to me is greater than all apart from the Devil, and no man is able to snatch them out of my Father’s hand, unless the person who does so is demonically inspired.”
John 11.25-26 “Yeshua said unto her, I am the doctrine of the resurrection and the life.” [Is Yeshua a DOCTRINE?] “He that believes on me though he were dead, yet shall he live. And whoever lives and believes in me shall never die unless he disqualifies himself from conditional immortality and dies eternally in hell fire which is the second death. Believe you this?”
Why do we continually qualify the plain statements of Our Lord Yeshua? My Lord Yeshua never thought like a Protestant, and he most certainly never thought like a Seventh Day Adventist. That is for certain! Yeshua makes simple, straight-forward assertions in his words as recorded in the Holy Bible. Those converted to Christianity from a cultic churchianity background often have immense difficulty erasing false ideas as the Spirit re-educates the mind.
The day has now come when Gentiles will approach Jewish Messianic believers for an authentic understanding of the Word of a holy God. “The Gentiles shall say, Surely our fathers have inherited lies” from the teachings of pastor, priest, missionary and Sunday School teacher — and no doubt false lying prophetesses with SPM (Special Person Misconception) (Jeremiah 16.19-21).
Lies? Oh, absolutely! As a believer in the Lord Yeshua you already have — you already possess — eternal life. Can you ever lose that eternal life? Pray tell, how can you lose something that is eternal?
Lies? Listen to Ellen again: “Those who accept the Saviour, however sincere their conversion, should never be taught to say or feel that they are saved… Those who accept Christ, and in their first confidence say, I am saved, are in danger of trusting to themselves” (Messiah’s Object Lessons, 155).
In contrast to the glum delusions of Ellen White, Mashiach inspired the apostle John to pen these words of spiritual encouragement: “I write these things to you in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life” (1 John 5.13).
But the Iron Mistress stubbornly argues: “At the time the light of health reform dawned upon us, and since that time, the questions have come home every day, ‘Am I practicing true temperance in all things?’ ‘Is my diet such as will bring me in a position where I can accomplish the greatest amount of good?’ If we cannot answer these questions in the affirmative, WE STAND CONDEMNED BEFORE GOD” (Counsels on Diet and Foods, 19,20). Paul writes: “There is now therefore NO CONDEM-NATION for those who are in Messiah Yeshua” (Romans 8.1 Gk). John writes: “Whoever believes in him is NOT CONDEMNED” (John 3.18). Yeshua says, “I tell you the truth! Whoever hears my word and believes on him who has sent me HAS ETERNAL LIFE and will NOT be CONDEMNED; he has crossed over from THE DEATH TO THE LIFE”
(John 5.24 Greek).
Messiah, or Ellen?
Yeshua never gave us “conditional immortality.” Please show me one place anywhere in the Messianic Scriptures (the so-called “NT”) where “conditional immortality” is even mentioned? “Conditional immortality” is a gross contradiction even in terms. Have our words lost their meaning? They certainly have if you are a Seventh Day Adventist!
“We Shall All Appear Before the…” What?
What if, as another prime example, we have been told to fear coming before Our Lord Yeshua at his Advent because of our sin — after all, we may have been told that “we shall all appear before the judgment seat of God.” Final verdicts, based upon behaviour, are given expression in ultimate sentence at judgment seats. We may have been told this, we may even have read it in some of our versions of the Bible. Worse still, we may even have believed it. Most of us live in constant apprehension that “we shall all appear before the judgment seat of God [or, as some few mss misread, “Christ”)” (Romans 14.10). That’s pretty scary.
- But Our Lord Yeshua told us with authority that Messianic believers (Christians) have already passed from “THE judgment to THE Life” (Greek). So what did Rav Shaul (Paul) mean?
Paul used a term in the Greek, meaning dais — an upraised platform: NOT a “judgment seat.” This was the upraised platform at the official Games before which victors stood to receive the laurel wreath of victory. No competitor at the Greek games was destroyed at the dais. Incidentally, Paul is not referring to gladiatorial combat games. The dais is something to look forward to with joyful expectancy and enthusiastic eagerness. It’s not something to dread. Our judgment occurred at the cross.
Adventism’s Rejection of Israel
It might surprise some in certain segments of the SDA faith, but the LORD God inspired the apostle Paul to comprehend that the day is coming wherein “ALL Israel shall be saved” (Romans 11). That’s not all “spiritual Israel” presently called “the Church” as Adventists would perceive Israel today. It’s ISRAEL as even Replacement Theologians in the Roman Catholic Church are now openly admitting. These biblical scholars are finally recognising that the ONLY apocalyptic view taught by the original apostles, and thereafter by the early Ante-Nicene Fathers of the church (Ante-Nicene = prior to the council of Nicea in 325 CE), was PRE-MILLENNIAL. Some will disagree. Others will argue. BRI’s mailbox will be full of hate-letters again. These letters will remain unanswered by us. Frankly, proponents of the Post-Millennial and A-Millennial views should avail them-selves of the writings of the Ante-Nicene Fathers (which most public libraries can make available from local university campuses) and check up and see for themselves: and then explain WHY the “a-millennial” and “post-millennial” positions are so popular today!
Since 1981 BRI has hammered the point home that we have Augustine, Roman Bishop of Hippo (354-430 CE), to blame for jettisoning the 1000-year EARTHLY reign of Messiah from the theology of the church. This North African scholar suffered from a debilitating psychosexual guilt, due to an early life of self-admitted excessive promiscuity, and his writings were entirely anti-sexual in the extreme. All physicality (no matter what the material origin) was in his view, not merely sinful, but inherently evil.
It was this view which lay the unnatural foundation for a celibate clergy. Not only so, but Augustine’s attitude of revulsion toward both the planet itself — as well as its inhabitants — caused him to focus entirely on a non-material heaven as the blessed reward of the saints. In the fervently charged anti-Jewish climate of his day and age Augustine’s ideas were quickly seen by Roman authorities to contain more than a measure of merit. His popular and persuasive convictions created a potential occasion to dismiss the Jews once and for all as God’s chosen people. Rising rapidly to their notice, this intellectual was commissioned by the Constantinian Church to thoroughly purge the Jewish people from the NT biblical record. To accomplish this he had to rewrite theology. His classic City of God (the original Satanic Verses with apologies to Salman Rushdie) is his masterful devilish contribution and untold millions have enthusiastically embraced his sentiments and insights.
Result? By the time of the Council of Ephesus (431 CE) the earthly reign of Yeshua was officially condemned as a heresy — the natural and disastrous consequence of a carnal churchianity’s hostility to the Jewish people.
Nevertheless, the subjecting God’s inviolate WILL shall be supreme — whether any of us like it or not. Isaiah prophesied that “the Torah shall go forth from Zion [sorry disciples of Augustine! That’s Zion, not the church] and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem [earthly Jerusalem, not the heavenly Jerusalem]. And he will judge …and will render decisions… and [the nations] will hammer their swords into plowshares, and… Nation shall not lift up sword against nation, and never again will they learn war” (Isaiah 2.2-4). These events occur, according to the sense given in Hebrew, during the Messianic Age — on earth, with the Messiah reigning from his Temple in Jerusalem — not up in heaven, or on a restored earth AFTER some desolate millennium!
“Then the moon will be abashed and the sun ashamed, for the LORD of legions WILL REIGN ON MOUNT ZION AND IN JERUSALEM [Where will Messiah reign? In some “church” up in the heavenly Jerusalem? No, on physical Mt Zion in physical Jerusalem here on EARTH] and his glory will be before his elders… and the LORD of legions will prepare a lavish banquet for all peoples ON THIS MOUNTAIN; a banquet of aged wine, choice pieces of beef with marrow, and refined aged wine.”
- Wine, aged wine, choice morsels of beef with the marrow — all MATERIAL, PHYSICAL, CARNAL, EARTHLY factors. Yes, WINE and BEEF with the marrow which SDA’s loathe and despise!
“And ON THIS MOUNTAIN he will swallow up the covering which is over all peoples, even the veil which is stretched over all nations [and the SDA church]. He will swallow up death for all time,” [that’s the death state] “and the LORD God will wipe tears away from all faces, and he will remove the reproach of his people from all the earth; for the LORD has spoken” (Isaiah 24.20-23; 25.6-8).
- The ABSOLUTE prophecies of God, GUARANTEED TO COME TO PASS, or the deluded demonic visions of a false prophetess — which will YOU choose?
After all is said and done, God’s prophecies concerning His people are without repentance (again, Romans 11). Isaiah stated categorically: “O Lord, you are my God! I will exalt you! I will praise your name! For you have achieved the impossible! PLANS DETERMINED LONG AGO ARE STEADFAST AND RELIABLE” (Isaiah 25.1).
- But Ellen White’s prophecies — A NUMBER OF THEM — stand discredited.
“As a people, the Jews have long ceased to have any significance” (Signs of the Times, November 1939). The article, based entirely on one of Ellen’s visions, continues: “Palestine will NEVER become their home!”
Let ol’ prolific Elly speak for herself. “I was pointed [in vision] to some who are in the great error of believing that it is their duty to go to Old Jerusalem; and think they have a work to do there before the Lord comes… I saw [in vision] that Satan had greatly deceived some in this thing… I also saw [in vision] THAT OLD JERUSALEM NEVER WOULD BE BUILT UP; and Satan was doing his utmost to lead the minds of the children of the Lord into these things now in the gathering time” (75).
Oh, Ellen White and her “old wives fables” (1 Timothy 4.7 KJV)! Isn’t it time we finally saw through the Satanic deception of false visions and utterances of lowlife filthy demonic scum that use poor human frailty to spawn theological evil?
Israel gained statehood in May, 1948 and retook Jerusalem in 1967 in the miraculous Six Day War. The Jewish people have, since then, BLOSSOMED and GROWN to world power — and are MOST SIGNIFICANT — the FOCUS of the entire world. So much for E.G.W’s visions from “God.”
Are YOU still caught in a cult — even a personality cult? Are YOU converted to the right Person? Our theological understanding as Messianic believers, or Christians, determines our entire outlook concerning our existence and place in this universe. And, like it or not, our theological beliefs and perceptions determine most certainly our attitude toward our fellow man, for whom Messiah also died, and our attitude toward life.
- In Jewish thoughtform, LIFE is the experience you bring to it. Of and by itself, in Jewish thoughtform, life has no meaning.
Only when we realise that we are alive, and owe it to ourselves to be truly and radically alive, only then does life have any meaning. This is enlightenment.
- So what’s involved in becoming enlightened?
When we are “born again,” we ought to realise that we have become “switched on.” It’s as though a light switch has been clicked on. Some of us realise that something dramatic has happened. Others of us remain entrenched in our past traditions, ideologies, concepts and teachings. But we must grow. Yet so often we fail to show any signs of growth. This is often the case when a religious spirit has virtually choked the life out of us.
A religious spirit? Absolutely. You can often easily identify people, in a physical way, who belong to peculiar religious orders. You can identify, readily enough, members of the Plymouth Brethren, Jehovah’s Witnesses and the Mormon church. You can also identify Seventh Day Adventists.
- Unfortunately you can often easily identify ex-SDA’s as well. They believe they have escaped the clutches of Ellen White, but many of them still think like SDAs, talk like SDAs, and wear the self-righteous uniform of SDAs. They are still programmed as SDAs.
When my wife and I began attending an AOG church some years back we were introduced to a young couple who, we were told, had a “deliverance ministry.” I instantly unnerved them both by asking pointedly how long it had been since they left the SDA denomination! I don’t think it was so much that I had “discernment of spirits” as it was that they just looked to me like SDA’s.
- How do ex-SDA’s generally view life?
Many of them continue to look at the world — their world — through SDA-coloured spectacles. New ideas, presented with enthusiasm, often create an angry tension within the heart of the individual needing deprogramming. Like hard-core right-wing Armstrongites, ex-SDAs often transfer their allegiance to an authority figure from within their own cultic circle. Today, the highly intelligent and equally unfortunate Dr Des Ford humbly wears the mantle. Most ex-adherents of the SDA sect have not yet risen up in newness of resurrection life. Some of them need a good thick juicy pepper steak, a couple of bottles of expensive red wine, some wild music, and a healthy romp in the bedroom to loosen them up. They’re not living, but subsisting on a religiously-strict doctrinal diet laced with poisonous preservatives and blood-depletive additives. It’s a spiritual tragedy!
- We fail to grasp that in nature for new growth to occur something must die. A tree does not grow unless a seed dies first. The “old man” must perish. The “new man” must not only be allowed to breathe but be allowed to live.
True enlightenment therefore involves our willingness and readiness to get rid of the life we think we have, and the life we’ve planned, so as to have the life that is awaiting us. With many of us the resurrected Mashiach is still waiting in the wings to open our minds to the possibilities HIS life has to offer us.
Yet our pursuit of “the life” we may choose cannot be entertained apart from the discipleship we owe to the One who said of himself, “I am the LIFE” (John 14.6). “I am come that they might have LIFE, and have it more abundantly” (John 10.10). As John wrote, “In [Yeshua] was LIFE and the LIFE was the light [or, enLIGHTenment] of men” (John 1.4).
Yeshua did not say, “I am conditional immortality.”
Yeshua did not say, “I am come that they might have conditional immortality… and that conditional immortality, more abundantly.” John did not write, “In Yeshua was conditional immortality and conditional immortality was the life of men.” What absurdity.
Yet for some reason the brilliant Des Ford clings tenaciously to his “conditionalist faith.” Because of this fundamental error he continues to embrace the false notion that Christians can commit the unpardonable sin, and that sin separates us from God, and that when Paul wrote “no condemnation” he really didn’t mean “no condemnation” (Good News Australia, No.2, 1999, 13).
Am I overtly critical? Some may possibly think so, especially some of those connected to GNU (Good News Unlimited) — an ex-Adventist organisation that seeks (rightly so) to liberate their brethren caught in cultic beliefs and practices.
Let me say this once and for all. My wife and I enthusiastically embraced the opportunity to become members of GNU. We certainly wanted to test the waters before we admitted our Messianic Community into cooperative membership. But now, only after a short space of time, my wife and I have WITHDRAWN our prospective alliance from GNU BECAUSE (while some seemed to accept us warmly, including a particular pastor) the majority of those with whom we had to do gave us the cold shoulder, or treated us with distrust, or observed us with suspicion, saw us as “outsiders,” and some preferred not to communicate with us at all. A number had hiccoughs over my wearing a yarmulke.
All we desired was to get “in there” with fellow believers to STIMULATE them into broadening the parameters of their biblical ignorance. After all, when we open the Bible we expand our ignorance dramatically. Or at least we ought to. In my sermons and lectures given in other churches and denominations — hundreds of them over the years — people have been challenged to THINK. But GNU folk — at least some of those I have had personal contact with — don’t want to rise up in resurrection life, but are still groaning and grovelling at the foot of the cross.
- While what Messiah did for all of us on the tree of crucifixion should be held in the highest loving reverence, loving esteem and loving devotion, Yeshua ROSE FROM THE DEAD and desires earnestly to live his life over again DYNAMICALLY in each of us. The Mashiach is not still nailed to that tree. His scars are our scars. That is true. But we — like the Messiah — have walked away from an empty tomb.
The aloof treatment my wife and I felt at the local GNU meetings from some of those brethren (and they remain our brethren) was unfortunately, in a word, cultic. One person even rang, claiming to speak for others — after my last lecture — and said we didn’t belong there. Perhaps that person was right in their assessment.
In my opinion, Des Ford and his gallant band of loyal reformers need to once and for all get off the tightrope upon which they attempt to balance between the demands of the Messiah and the “sensitivity” of their former colleagues. They ought to “Stand Up, Stand Up For Jesus!” and determine finally and authentically what the Lord had to say about eternal life. They need to reject what they call “the conditionalist faith of our fathers.” They need to drop EGW’s “old wives fable” about “Christ as a contingency plan” (Good News Australia, No.2 1999 article ‘Why the Cross?’ By Des Ford, 4, third paragraph, left column). They need to stop being afraid of losing the financial support of their ex-SDA membership. If their “Good News Unlimited” — their Clayton’s church — is of God it will continue to grow, even if they DO finally stand up FOR Yeshua and AGAINST White and her evil doctrines. “Good News Unlimited” IS a church. We may call our spiritual unions and gatherings by the term “ekk’le’sia” or “home Bible study” or “Bible Students” or “Foundation” or “Associates” or even “Good News Unlimited.” They are, and they remain, churches.
Is GNU a Church? Their magazine masthead says no. Call a church by whatever name you wish: it remains a church.
Awaiting the Believer — Destiny in Eternal Fire
I can quickly illustrate how closed-minded many of us are when it comes to the biblical revelation. Most of us believe sinners will spend eternity in the fires of God. In actual fact it is believers who will spend eternity in the fires of God.
In Jewish thoughtform it is God who is a consuming fire, who is surrounded by flames of fire, sitting on a throne of fire, encircled with spirits of fire in frantic, frenzied dance. God as Spirit is composed of fire. The universe is created from fire. Modern scientists have discovered the truth of the latter assessment. Creation is made from the basic building block of fire. In both Deuteronomy 4.24 (in the Hebrew Scriptures) and Hebrews 12.29 (in the Messianic Scriptures) we learn that “God is a consuming fire.” It is also written that “God makes his servants a flame of fire” (Hebrews 1.7). “He makes his angels fire” (Psalm 104.4). It was Isaiah who asked “Who among us shall dwell with the devouring fire? Who among us shall dwell with everlasting burnings?” (Isaiah 33.14). He then answers his own question: “He that walks righteously, and speaks uprightly. He that despises the gain of oppressions, that shakes his hand from holding of bribes, that stops his ears from hearing of blood, and shuts his eyes from seeing evil.”
Whether we grasp it or not, our destiny is to live forever in the fires of God — we are destined to be consumed by the fires of God. I cannot speak for anyone reading this lecture, but for myself I earnestly desire to be lost forever in the fires of God’s holy presence. This may seem a little strange to you, but if you stop to think about it, only when we lose ourselves do we really find ourselves. Only when we lose ourselves and our wills in God’s fiery will can we experience true lasting peace that passes all understanding. God’s Spirit burns with the fires of God’s passionate love. God’s heartbeat ought to consume us. Our praise daily should be thus articulated: “Come holy Spirit, Come and burn, burn, BURN within.”
Modern Theologies of Sin Contrasted With Grace
Some preachers talk sin. It’s all they know. With regret they have never understood the letter of Paul to the Romans. If they did they would comprehend that Messiah — not hell — is humankind’s final destiny.
These same preachers are devoid of understanding that Messiah did not come to do away with his Father’s law — the Torah. (For clarification I am not now discussing SDA’s, although there are some influential ex-SDA pastors, now aligned with the general Protestant church, who do have this misconception.) Even though Our Lord Yeshua stated in the plainest possible language that he did NOT come to ABOLISH the Torah but to FULFIL it (Matthew 5.17-18) they qualify his statements, which then contradict what he just said. The Torah, they claim, has been fulfilled and therefore no longer exists. Yet, they protest vehemently, we must not SIN.
What is sin?
The Bible declares that sin is lawlessness (1 John 3.4). Therefore, sin IS the transgression of Torah. But once you do away with the Torah you do away with sin. Sin they must now reinterpret. If you are a “Pentecostal Fundamentalist” sin becomes visiting a bottle shop, smoking a cigar, using “pot,” and necking with your bride-to-be. It’s wearing short skirts, and flashing an expensive ring, or driving over the limit. In short it’s having a rollicking good time. Yet none of these things are necessarily “sin.” Sin is unrighteousness — UNrighteous behaviour (1 John 5.17). The Torah and the Torah alone determines acceptable human behaviour, not some Gentile minister utterly incapable of interpreting Jewish thoughtform!
- Wanna see the results of Gentile misunderstanding and misapplication of the Torah? Take a look at the countless thousands of churches, denominations, sects and cults around the world all contradicting one another and yet all claiming to understand Paul and his discussions about the law.
Sin is breaking the commandments of God. True, the Torah, in Jewish thoughtform, is not eternal. It was never meant to be. Also, God (whose pure finger wrote the Torah) accommodates to man, not simply the other way around. Ezra, who largely canonised the Tanack (the so-called OT Scriptures) understood this, and his view of Torah can be seen most clearly in comparing the two forms of the Decalogue given in Exodus 20 and Deuteronomy 5. Certainly, Yeshua accommodated to man and his needs within a distinct cultural setting and social environment and this was ever the example he set. Our Lord Yeshua, who, as the actual embodiment of Torah — who is “the Living Torah” — determines “holy” and “righteous” behaviour.
God Has Dealt Forever With Sin
God dealt with sin on the tree of crucifixion. The righteous Redeemer, Yeshua, became the world’s greatest sinner for you and for me. More so, he actually metamorphosed as sin itself (2 Corinthians 5.21 KJV). God’s wrath was against His precious Son as the ultimate Reprobate Man, the Last (not “second”) Adam (1 Corinthians 15.45). God’s anger against sin was abated in him and in him alone. If God’s satisfaction in judgment for sin (Isaiah 53.11) was found to be in the crucified God-Man at Golgoleth, which it is, then hell cannot be a termination for any who enter therein. Especially is this the case when considering that the whole world — at Maschiah’s death — was justified (Romans 5.18).
The belief in hell’s temporal nature, almost needless to point out, is precisely what the Jews believed in the days of Our Lord Yeshua! Hell was temporary, and existed to purify the characters of the incorrigible.
- Messiah — the Living Torah and the Heavenly Man (the Ad’am Kad’mon) — not hell, is humankind’s final destiny.
God is a Satisfied Saviour. God is no longer righteously angry with man. Hell does not exist to burn up any mistakes of God. The Lord of all does not make mistakes. Every human soul has a value in the eyes of God. God is the Father of the spirits of all humankind, if I may dare quote from a supposedly redundant book of the Torah (Numbers 16.22; 27.16). For, Messiah BECAME every man and woman and child who has ever lived or will ever live. It was Messiah slain that satisfied the divine justice. It was not hell. It was Messiah as a corpse on the tree who paid the penalty for our sins — not by doing away with the Torah, but by doing away with our sins. Our sins were eliminated (not just covered) when he bled and died on the tree. They will not be eliminated in hell. The cross of Yeshua satisfied God the Father. Messiah died for our sins, and for the sins of the whole world, and the sins of the entire universe including the angelic powers.
Yeshua is a Satisfied Saviour! “It pleased the LORD to crush him” on the tree (Isaiah 53.10 Hebrew). God is no longer angry in this age of Grace (2 Corinthians 5). We all need a new glorying in the crucifixion tree.
We all need to be stimulated to a new desire for sound biblical teaching based upon first-century Jewish thoughtform, and THEN be activated into a new love for Messiah by granting him space to LIVE HIS DYNAMIC YOUNG LIFE all over again within our overburdened hearts.
Yes, love IS other-enriching. Knowledge, however enlightening and however important, is always fragmentary, incomplete and imperfect. More so, when we realise the degree to which we have lost precious knowledge due to our proclivity of reading back into the sacred text qualifications that weren’t there in the first place. Human beings need to be put back in their place, where they belong. Especially does this include those who have been the recipients of demonic visions and who, through those visions, have led the sincere and gullible into the most oppressive of religious fetishes and nightmares.
Particularly is this true concerning that dirty three letter word “sin.” As last day Messianic believers we all have a respons-ibility to get back to the original revelation of Messiah — indeed, to get back to the roots of the Olive Tree into which Gentiles have been grafted, but which root-system they have tended to spurn and neglect.
The crucified Jew, Yeshua, is God’s Olive Tree — our message of hope for today. There is no other.
The day is near, when “at the name of Yeshua every knee should bow, of things in the heavens, and things in the earth, and things under the earth; and that every tongue should confess that Yeshua haMashiach is Lord, to the glory of God the Father” (Philippians 2.10-11).