Seventh-Day Adventists/The IJ: a Different Look

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Frank wrote at 2014-08-09 22:06:28
8 4 2014 - The IJ: a Different Look

<<< The expert’s answer: >>>

    I appreciate your honesty in acknowledging that according to the Bible Jesus upon his ascension did indeed go to the right hand of God. I say this because I have dealt with SDAs who deny this obvious Bible fact. It's refreshing to read of you acceptance of the Bible.

Let's test your belief that upon his ascension Jesus went to the Holy Place in the sanctuary in heaven where the Father had His throne. Then on October 22, 1844 both Father & Son moved into the Most Holy Place to begin the Investigative Judgment. I agree with you that Ellen White a.k.a. "the Spirit of Prophecy" did see this in vision.

"I saw the Father rise from the throne, and in a flaming chariot go into the holy of holies within the veil, and sit down. Then Jesus rose up from the throne, and the most of those who were bowed down arose with Him. I did not see one ray of light pass from Jesus to the careless multitude after He arose, and they were left in perfect darkness. Those who arose when Jesus did, kept their eyes fixed on Him as He left the throne and led them out a little way. Then He raised His right arm, and we heard His lovely voice saying, 'Wait here; I am going to My Father to receive the kingdom; keep your garments spotless, and in a little while I will return from the wedding and receive you to Myself.' Then a cloudy chariot, with wheels like flaming fire, surrounded by angels, came to where Jesus was. He stepped into the chariot and was borne to the holiest, where the Father sat" (Early Writings, p. 55).

I believe that SDAs, like you, who take this position are being honest with the Bible fact that upon his ascension Jesus went to the right hand of God. They want the Church to be special and right, therefore, the attempt to justify this unique SDA doctrine. Sadly, this attempt has no biblical support. Nothing in the Bible says that this occurred in heaven.

<<< What Jesus did after His ascension into heaven is found in the Old Testament scriptures. Jesus told the unbelieving Jews, “Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me.” (John 5:39 KJV) Yet how many say we are no longer “under” the Old Covenant and are offended when Old Testament scriptures are quoted? They literally ignore the Jewish sanctuary and its service that was so glorious that Moses, when he came to understand it was asked to cover His face when he went before the people for its glory shown there(2 Cor 3:13). The entire plan of salvation is reflected in yearly round of the service of the sanctuary and culminates at the end of the year with the “Day of Atonement”, the cleansing of the sanctuary and the feast of tabernacles. >>>  

    The throne of God in the earthly sanctuary was always in the Most Holy Place. When was the ark of the covenant brought into the Holy Place along side the priest? I suggest that in the sanctuary in heaven it is the same. The throne of God is always in the Most Holy Place never in the Holy Place. Consequently, this attempt to justify the IJ fails.

<<< The earthly sanctuary was patterned after the heavenly. There were, of course, compromises because the earthly sanctuary was made small to be portable and the priests were not without sin so the presence of God had to be shielded from them or they would die. Although the earthly sanctuary was beautiful it could not compare in the least with the scope and size and majesty of the heavenly except when Jesus was there.  >>>

    The other SDA proposal you mentioned I likewise see to be an honest attempt to deal with the biblical evidence while maintaining the IJ. They have offered that Jesus did enter the Most Holy Place at his ascension, but only to dedicate it. Then he went into the Holy Place and ministered there until October 22, 1844. While this proposal does answer how Jesus could be at the right hand of God in the first century, as the New Testament clearly states, and yet be ministering in the Holy Place, as the IJ doctrine requires, it has a fatal flaw. According to the man who received the IJ vision, Hiram Edson, he saw Jesus enter the Most Holy Place on October 22, 1844 "for the first time".

"We started, and while passing through a large field I was stopped about midway of the field. Heaven seemed opened to my view, and I saw distinctly and clearly that instead of our High Priest coming out of the Most Holy of the heavenly sanctuary to come to this earth on the tenth day of the seventh month, at the end of the 2300 days, He for the first time entered on that day the second apartment of that sanctuary; and that He had a work to perform in the Most Holy Place before coming to the earth" (Hiram Edson Manuscript Fragment).

Therefore, those SDAs who propose Jesus going to the Most Holy Place immediately after his ascension then to the Holy Place then back to the Most Holy Place on October 22, 1844 are in direct contradiction with the man who actually had the vision. Hiram Edson said that he "saw distinctly and clearly" that Jesus on October 22, 1844 "for the first time" entered the Most Holy Place. Consequently, this attempt to justify the IJ also fails.       

<<< No doubt Hiram Edson meant that Christ entered into the Most Holy Place for the first time to begin the work of judgment as is typified in the earthly sanctuary with its cleansing on the Day of Atonement. The earthly sanctuary and all its implements were anointed with oil by Moses before the sanctuary was put into service and then the yearly round of the sacrificial offerings began as the priests ministered in the Holy Place making intercession for the sins of the people. So in the anti-type Jesus must have anointed the entire heavenly sanctuary before beginning to minister in the Holy Place of the heavenly sanctuary. >>>

    It saddens me to see good Christian people try so hard to make the IJ fit with the biblical evidence. It is an impossible task that they have chosen. They should reject the false teaching of the IJ and accept the Bible. Instead they try to defend the IJ in the face of the clear evidence against it. Perhaps they have equated membership in the SDA Church with truth and love for God; therefore, they simply cannot accept that the SDA Church teaches a false doctrine. Whatever the reason may be, it is sad to see these good Christian people ensnared by this false teaching.

<<< In the first chapter of the book of Revelation, John is told to write what he is shown in vision and send it to the seven Churches which are in Asia (Rev 1:11). He turns and sees “one like unto the Son of man” (vs 13) who is in amongst the seven golden candlesticks (vs 12) which means he sees Jesus in the holy place of the heavenly sanctuary. The time of this vision is during the age of the new Covenant Church and he is again told to, “Write the things which thou hast seen, and the things which are, and the things which shall be hereafter” (vs 19). The seventh church is Laodicea which means “a judging of the people”. This judging began Oct. 22, 1844 when Jesus began the “cleansing” of the true sanctuary in heaven at the end of the 2300 “days”. >>>

    I am sorry to have to say this, but the SDA doctrine of the IJ reminds me of the JW doctrine of the 1914 return of Jesus. The JW organization predicted that the return of Jesus would occur in 1914 when this failed to happen they were embarrassed and distraught. These feelings caused the JW organization to announce that they were not wrong after all. Jesus had indeed returned, but invisibly. Thus the JW organization tried to save face.

<<< Not only was there no Seventh-day Adventist “organization” when William Miller preached the return of Jesus in 1843 then 1844, the Millerites did not prophesy the return of Jesus in 1844. They understood a prophecy in the book of Daniel to say Christ would return to this earth in 1844. To say it is comparable to a failed JW prophecy is dishonest and self-serving. Also, those Millerites who didn’t fall away because of their mistaken interpretation of Daniel 8:14 did not try to “cover it up”. They knew that their understanding of the time of the prophecy was correct, it was the event that they had wrong and they knew that as well. >>>

   This despite the fact that the Bible clearly states that Jesus' return will be very visible and loud. "For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord" (1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 NKJV). "Behold, he is coming amid the clouds, and every eye will see him, even those who pierced him. All the peoples of the earth will lament him. Yes. Amen" (Revelation 1:7 NASBRE). Hardly an invisible return.

<<< It is the protestant church that has swallowed Catholic anti-reformation theology and believes in a “secret rapture”. It is the SDA Church that preaches the truth concerning the second coming and it will be, as the expert has stated, quite visible and quite loud. No one on the planet will miss it. >>>

    In a like manner, when William Miller predicted the return of Jesus on October 22, 1844 his followers including those who would later begin the SDA Church believed and rejoiced. When the date passed without the return of Jesus, Miller's followers were embarrassed and distraught. No doubt these feelings led one member, Hiram Edson, to have a vision which showed him that the date set was correct, but what occurred was not the return of Jesus, but his moving from the Holy Place to the Most Holy Place in the sanctuary in heaven in order to begin, the never before heard of, Investigative Judgment.

<<< Noah preached for 120 years of a “never before heard of” flood that would engulf the entire world. A world that until that time had never experienced rain. When it began to rain, however, the door to the ark had already been shut and even though the people had been given “present truth” it was then too late for them to enter the ark and be saved. The present truth of the investigative judgment and the end of the age is now being rejected in a similar manner by many as well. The angel proclaims the message, “Saying with a loud voice, Fear God, and give glory to him; for the hour of his judgment is come: and worship him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters.”

(Rev 14:7 KJV) No one knows when the end will come but it will come as a thief in the night to those who choose to remain in Babylon. “When once the master of the house is risen up, and hath shut to the door, and ye begin to stand without, and to knock at the door, saying, Lord, Lord, open unto us; and he shall answer and say unto you, I know you not whence ye are:” (Luke 13:25 KJV)  Let he “. . . that is unjust, let him be unjust still: and he which is filthy, let him be filthy still: and he that is righteous, let him be righteous still: and he that is holy, let him be holy still.” (Revelation 22:11 KJV) >>>

    Thus some Millerites tried to save face. This despite the fact that the Bible clearly states that Jesus was already at the right hand of God in the Most Holy Place in the first century. "So then, when the Lord Jesus had spoken to them, He was received up into heaven and sat down at the right  hand of God" (Mark 16:19 NASB). "But when Christ had offered for all time a single sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand of God" (Hebrews 10:12 ESV). The New Testament nowhere gives support to the belief that Jesus waited until 1844 to enter the Most Holy Place.

<<< As we have just seen, the New Testament does show Jesus in the Holy Place of the heavenly sanctuary at the appropriate time. While it is true there are a number of verses that say Jesus is seated with the Father on His throne and at His right hand or something similar, that could simply mean He is with Him in the heavenly sanctuary doing His appointed work. When Jesus accomplished the atoning sacrifice on earth He was restored to His rightful position at the right hand of the Father seated on His throne. From the beginning Christ has been the Father’s “right hand man” in the plan of salvation. There is, “. . . none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.” (Acts 4:12 KJV) >>>

    Let me add that I realize that the JWs are not Christians and the SDAs are Christians, but the parallels between the JWs failed 1914 date and the SDAs failed 1844 date are too strong to ignore. Perhaps the JWs borrowed the SDAs way of dealing with the embarrassment of a failed date, I don't know. I do know that it is a sad chapter in Christian history. These two churches filled with people who love God and earnestly desire to see the return of the Lord Jesus. Yet they are unable to accept that they have followed false prophets. Instead of humbling themselves and admitting their error they invent further falsehoods to put a band-aid on their original error. Thus their errors persist and continue to ensnare many even today.

<<< “To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne.” (Rev 3:21 KJV) It seems that sitting in one of God’s thrones should not be taken too literally. Will the host of the redeemed sit with Jesus on His throne throughout the endless ages of eternity doing nothing? The answer to that question is obviously no. “And they shall build houses, and inhabit them; and they shall plant vineyards, and eat the fruit of them.” (Isaiah 65:21 KJV) Subsequently the answer to the question, “was Jesus always in the Most Holy Place on the throne with His Father since the resurrection?” the answer must also be no. Whether God’s throne was in the Holy Place and then then moved to the Most Holy place in 1844 or was always in the Most Holy Place while Jesus ministered in the Holy Place is a moot point. “After this I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands;” (Revelation 7:9 KJV) The redeemed who are set with Jesus in His throne (Rev 3:21) are at the same time described as standing before Jesus. We believe it is the same with Jesus as He ministered in the Holy Place until Oct. 22 1844. >>>

God Bless You,

Brother Sal

<<< In Christ’s love,

        Frank >>>




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Expertise

I am privileged to be able to offer an alternative insight into the complicated world of Seventh-Day Adventists (SDA) theology. I will rely heavily on the Bible, but will also consider history and use logic in exposing deficiencies in SDA teachings. I would ask anyone who is considering becoming a SDA or if you are already in the SDA church, but are searching for the truth, to please allow me to offer a different explanation for the claims of the SDA. Remember : "The truth will set you free" (John 8:32). I can answer your questions pertaining to the beliefs and history of the SDA. I am not able to answer questions concerning spirituality or church discipline.

Experience

I have extensively studied the theology of the Seventh-Day Adventists (SDA) for a number of years. I have many books and tape sets produced by experts in this field of study. I have debated current members of the SDA church. I have a great desire to help these people see the truth.

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M.S. degree in Food, Nutrition, and Dietetics

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