Seventh-Day Adventists/Alpha & Omega apostasy...


I just read Tom's answer concerning the Living Temple and the Omega apostasy from 2008 and I found the links recommended "for further study" at the bottom of the answer to be somewhat of facetious attempt at sarcasm, that is to say I understood the message loud and clear.  Having encountered those explanations before as well as what is discussed in the atomorrow forums pertaining to the "published/approved" writings of EGW and not being finding satisfaction for the facts discovered I was elated to discover Adventistreform and atomorrow.  Tom's explanations, definitions and descriptions are the only logical conclusions based upon the facts I have discovered.  This is more of a thank you and encouragement for the work put forward, but since it is a Q&A format my question is pertaining to the anti-Trinitarian, Arian or semi-Arianism stance of the Pioneers, James White, Andrews, etc.  Is their any credibility to this or do you believe this too is a myth perpetuated?

Thank you for your support of Adventist Reform.  This is why I went pubic a number of years ago; to honestly explain the facts of Adventist history to the SDA community that has not been told the truth.  At some point, the facts had to come out, and so they have.

The Trinity Debate & SDA’s

There is no doubt that the early Pioneers had a different view of the Trinity from later generations.  Even Ellen White changed her view over time, as she did with many other points of doctrine, including the Sabbath as well as the Gospel and the Law in Galatians.  

So it is true that there was doctrinal diversity and development on this point, and a number of SDA scholars have recently studied this issue.  

However, any division about Christology was not a major impediment to the work of Sabbath Reform, nor was it a public point of debate in 1888 as Froom claimed in 1971.  In fact, this is where myths and legend enter the picture, just as you suspected.  

Here are some good sources to understand this topic:

Ellen White and Arianism

The Adventist Trinity Debate
Part 1: Historical Overview

Part 2: The Role of Ellen G. White
The Adventist Trinity Debate

Trinity Page

There should be little doubt that there were differences over this point for many years.  However, this officially endorsed view that Christology was the source of the 1888 debate is totally without merit, support, or foundation.  It is utter fiction that has never been supported by any scholar or historian because it is totally false.

Froom’s False Claim

In 1971, Dr. Froom wrote the “official” story of 1888.  He claimed that the SDA’s had a great debate about Christology in 1888; and that this was a turning point for the Denomination as they became more Trinitarian and Gospel oriented.  

So when you hear this talk about the SDA leaders having differences over the Trinity, the real source is Froom.  He is the one that elevated this minor topic, and blew it out of proportion and out of historical context so that he could continue to protect the great cover-up that was taking place in the White Estate.  Froom knew all about it; as he was part of this crime of suppression that Daniels had started.

By 1971, Froom was a leading Takoma Park apologist and church scholar.  His epic 700-page tome, Movement of Destiny was written as an apologetic, but passed off by the church as a work of honest scholarship.  But it was not a search for truth, but a work that perpetuated a massive cover-up in the White Estate that would be discovered in 1979 and made public by Tom Norris in the late 1990’s.  

So yes, this idea that the Trinity caused the 1888 debates, is diversion and myth.  It is but one of many examples of how the SDA leaders have failed to tell the truth all these years.  The church has yet to confess and repent about Froom’s mythmaking, which paved the way for Glacier View and the resulting demise of Adventism.

While there was some minor debate about this issue over a long period of time, as there was in most every other denomination, it was nowhere in sight during the 1888 conflict as Froom claims.   And he knew this fact all along.  

Takoma Park Revisions to 1888

The official version of 1888 is contained in Leroy Edwin Froom’s Movement of Destiny.  This dishonest work helped the legalists by declaring that the Nature of Christ was the point of contention.  And thus great myth was injected into church history as if it were true.

Froom stated that Waggoner's 1888 presentations were taken down in shorthand by his wife, Jessie F. Moser-Waggoner, and then edited by Waggoner to appear later in book form as Christ and His Righteousness (1890); The Gospel in Creation (1894) and The Glad Tidings (1900)." (See Froom, Movement of Destiny, p.189).

"Robert J. Weiland follows Froom's thought when he wrote in the foreword to his edited version of The Glad Tidings, 1972: "I discovered that the message of this book was in reality a transcript of studies that Dr. Waggoner gave personally to a gathering of ministers in Minneapolis, Minnesota, in the fall of 1888 (p.6)."

But Froom's contention is a diversion and a fraud and he knew it all along.  The Nature of Christ played no role in the debate, nor did Waggoner’s books contain the real Gospel issues that were never resolved in Battle Creek.

To prove this point, listen to both Dr. Yost and Bert Haloviak, who were eyewitnesses to the discovery of the 1888 materials in the Archives by Tom Norris in 1979. They also worked to help me gain access into the White Estate, which resulted in the discovery of Arthur White's massive fraud, which was supported by Froom.

They both deny Froom's 1888 account as well as that of Weiland and the 1888 Study Committee.

Dr. Donald Yost, Archivist of the General Conference in Washington stated in October 1980 that there was no evidence that the nature of Christ was part of the 1888 presentations.  He had the facts and knew what he was talking about.

David P. McMahon is also convinced that the human nature of Christ was not the content of Waggoner's message.   He writes:

"There is no evidence that Waggoner's teaching on the humanity of Christ was part of his message in 1888. This is one of the Waggoner myths demolished by an investigation of the original sources."

(Elliot Joseph Waggoner, p.104).

Ellen G. White makes many allusions to the message of 1888. In Testimonies to Ministers, pp. 91,92 she indicates that God sent a precious message through Jones and Waggoner.

"The message was to bring before the world the uplifted Savior. It presented justification through faith in the Surety and invited people to accept the righteousness of Christ made manifest in obedience to God's commandments. They needed to see Christ's divine person, His merits and His love. Christ had all power to impart the gift of His righteousness to the human agent. This was the third angel's message to be given in a loud voice."

Furthermore, Ellen White also says that it was an unwillingness to accept Waggoner's exposition of the moral law in Galatians, which caused the opposition to Waggoner's Gospel messages.

(See Letter 96, 1896 and Manuscript 15, 1888, in A. V. Olson, Through Crisis to Victory, pp.52-55).

Today, the records of 1888 have been found, so there is no point for SDA’s to pretend any more.  Why keep pretending and lying?  Don't the SDA leaders know it is a great sin to lie to the church?

Col. 3:9 Do not lie to one another, since you laid aside the old self with its evil practices,

Eph. 4:25  Therefore, laying aside falsehood, SPEAK TRUTH EACH ONE of you WITH HIS NEIGHBOR, for we are members of one another.

Listen to Bert Haloviak, an expert on SDA history and the director of the Denomination's Archives:

"Among the significant items that have been discovered recently are the W. C. White handwritten notes from the Minneapolis meetings. These were uncovered at the White Estate in Washington, D.C. "

In the light of these notes and other discoveries, Bert Haloviak, wrote: "You can see from the handwritten W. C. White notes and also know from thousands of documents recently studied pertaining to the 1888 period that Christology was not the point of friction in 1888. "

"The theology of the law in Galatians and of the covenants and the question of the role of the Spirit of Prophecy were the basic points of contention."

Letter from Bert Haloviak to E. C. Webster, August 3, 1982

Today, the record is clear that the White Estate and Dr. Froom were misleading the Adventist Community about Ellen White and the 1888 debates.  Thousands of documents from that period were found in 1979 and it is time for the SDA’s to tell the truth and repudiate their patiently false accounts.  The church leaders need to confess and repent for perpetrating a massive fraud about Ellen White and church history on the Adventist community and the public.  But so far, they are playing innocent...

Galatians & 1888

Here are some additional links:

Kellogg's Living Temple & the Omega Apostasy

J H Kellogg, Living Temple, & the Omega

I trust this response answers your question and provides further resources for additional study.  Thank you again for supporting Adventist Reform.

Tom Norris for All & Adventist Reform

Seventh-Day Adventists

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Tom Norris


I can answer most any question about church history and theology, starting from 1818 when William Miller articulated the 1st Angels Message that became the foundation of the Adventist Movement. While this first prophetic message terminated in the spring of 1844, it was followed by what Adventists refer to as the 2nd Angels Message, which dates from the spring of 1844 until the great disappointment of October 22, 1844. By 1847, the 3rd Angels Message had been developed and this Sabbatarian theology represents the Seventh-day Adventist Church. Moreover, I can explain the historical and theological development of the SDA denomination from its beginning and on through the great Battle Creek schism that forced the SDA's to retreat to Takoma Park. Here the 20th century church recovered from their internal battles that had erupted at the 1888 General Conference in Minneapolis over the definition of the law and the Gospel. Fearing another repeat of this disaster, President Daniels, determined to hide this debate. However, this policy led to more conflict, especially over the role and authority of Ellen White, a unique and accomplished religious writer that had remarkable spiritual gifts. However, by the decade of the 1970`s, the church once again erupted into debate. The hierarchy settled the turmoil in 1980 with the trial of Dr. Desmond Ford at Glacier View. Here Dr. Ford was exiled because he supposedly disagreed with Ellen White over the Fundamentals. But this controversial action resulted in another major schism that is still in progress today.


Tom Norris was raised as a Seventh-day Adventist in Takoma Park, Md. He attended SDA grade and High schools, moving on to study Adventist theology at Columbia Union College. He also spent significant time conducting independent research in the General Conference Archives and the Ellen G. White Estate. Over the years he has also interviewed a number of prominent Adventist scholars, theologians, and Pastors ranging from the late Arthur White to the exiled Dr. Desmond Ford. In addition, he has amassed a large private library, which includes numerous rare books and manuscripts about Adventist theology and history. He is presently the online editor of Adventist Reform, and can be found at Adventist for Tomorrow answering questions online about SDA theology and history as well as promoting Adventist Reform.

Tom Norris attended SDA grade and High schools, moving on to study Adventist theology at Columbia Union College. He also spent significant time conducting independent research in the General Conference Archives and the Ellen G. White Estate.

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