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The Seventh Day Adventists

In looking at the Seventh Day Adventists website it is difficult to see a lot wrong with the group. This false religion appears more than any other to be born again Christians. They outwardly teach salvation by grace through faith in Christ alone, the virgin birth, the Godhead, baptism by immersion, the deity of Christ etc.. They fail to mention their inner church teachings that modify these doctrines, add to them or take away from them.

The problem comes in when one finds that Ellen G. White, one of the founders of the Seventh Day Adventists, is supposedly a prophetess whose many books are considered as being on the same level as the Bible. So let's look at her background briefly and then look at where the Seventh Day Adventists disagree with mainstream Christianity.

The early history goes back to William Miller, who was a baptist preacher and came to the conclusion that Christ would return to the earth in 1843. Christ did not come in 1843, so he changed the date to 1844. Christ didn't come in 1844 either so there was no more date setting by Miller. Ellen Harmon, at this time 17 years old, claimed that God showed her that Jesus entered the holy of Holies in heaven to begin the investigative judgment (this will be explained later). James White was one of the leaders in the Seventh Day Adventists and married Ellen Harmon in 1846. Some of the followers of Miller then formed Seventh Day Adventists and began keeping the Saturday Sabbath.

One of the problems of the Seventh Day Adventists is that Ellen G. White has been proven to have copied “The Great Controversy”, which contains the key doctrines of Seventh Day Adventists theology. She did not receive it from God as a prophetess but copied it. Since that is true her writings are not as one who is a prophet but one who is a plagiarist. She copied this book from the ones written by James White who copied from those written by John N. Andrews, all joint founders of the Seventh Day Adventists.

The Adventists, like the Jehovah's Witnesses, the Mormons, and others came out with their own Bible translation in 1994. It is called “The Clear Word Bible” and has been changed several times since it first came out. This Bible incorporates the Adventists doctrine which is woven into the text. It is a paraphrase that teaches Adventists doctrine. Here are two examples of their Bible and the changes seem to be endless. Therefore, as you read this article bear in mind that they are using a different Bible with the teachings of Ellen G. White and her writings from “The Great Controversy” woven in.

The Bible says in Matthew 25:45, "And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal."
The Clear Word Bible says, "I have no choice but to end your lives, because in my kingdom everyone cares about everyone else."

The Bible says in Jude 1:9, "Yet Michael the archangel, when contending with the devil he disputed about the body of Moses, durst not bring against him a railing accusation, but said, The Lord rebuke thee."
The Clear Word Bible says, "In contrast to these ungodly men is the Lord Jesus, also called Michael the Archangel, for He is over the entire angelic host. When He was challenged by Satan about His intentions to resurrect Moses, He didn't come at Satan with a blistering attack, nor did He condemn him with mockery. He simply said, "God rebuke you for claiming Moses' body."

Seventh Day Adventists, like the Jehovah's Witnesses, believe that Jesus is Michael the Archangel. They get this from the writings of Ellen G. White but at the same time they believe that Jesus is God. This contradicts God's Word as can be seen in Hebrews 1:8-14, and is clearly against Christian doctrine. Jesus, of course, is not an angel but is the Son of God as clearly taught in the Bible. See our article on the “Two Natures of Christ' for additional information.

The Seventh Day Adventists have several distinctive doctrines which distinguish them from Christian churches. Let's begin with where the problem begins and that is with prophecy and Ellen G. White. In the 28 Fundamental Belief's published by by the Seventh Day Adventists under the 18th belief “The Gift of Prophecy” we find the statement,
"The Scriptures testify that one of the gifts of the Holy Spirit is prophecy. This gift is an identifying mark of the remnant church and we believe it was manifested in the ministry of Ellen G. White. Her writings speak with prophetic authority and provide comfort, guidance, instruction, and correction to the church."
This means that Ellen G. Whites writings can be used as authoritative truths equal to God's Bible. This is where the Seventh Day Adventists get out of the true teaching of God's Word and add to and take away from God's Word. Ellen G. White wrote a multitude of books with most changing the meaning of God's Word.

The Seventh Day Adventists teach salvation by grace through faith, but then add works to grace. Grace is given to mankind which enables the keeping of God's law and build a holy character that is fit for heaven. They call this Classical Arminianism. In other words, they explain, if two men, Jim and Bob, give their hearts to Christ; they are both born again, sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise, pardoned of their sins, declared to be the sons of God. However, only Jim makes it to heaven while Bob ends up lost because he turned his back on Christ. Jim would make it to heaven by virtue of his faith in Christ, but Bob having decided to turn his back on Christ, would be turned away.

In other words they believe one can be lost after being saved. One of their books on “How to Know You're Saved”, says “People can "fall away" from God through choice, pressure, carelessness or inattention. Though God draws us to Himself and will do everything He can to keep us close to Him, He won't force us to stay. But those who do stay close to God live happier, more confident lives than those who don't. To see that mankind can not lose their salvation see our article “Lose Salvation”. How can one get into heaven when no sin is allowed into heaven? See our article on “Imputation”. When you have read these two articles you will see that the Seventh Day Adventists are not teaching God's Word. By adding to, taking away, and by placing a lie between two truths they change God's Word.

In Ellen G. Whites book “Steps to Christ” she says:
How shall a man be just with God? How shall the sinner be made righteous? It is only through Christ that we can be brought into harmony with God, with holiness; but how are we to come to Christ? Many are asking the same question as did the multitude on the Day of Pentecost, when, convicted of sin, they cried out, "What shall we do?" The first word of Peter's answer was, "Repent." Acts 2:37, 38. At another time, shortly after, he said, "Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord;" Acts 3:19. Repentance includes sorrow for sin and a turning away from it. We shall not renounce sin unless we see its sinfulness; until we turn away from it in heart, there will be no real change in the life.

If one was saved by grace through faith alone as they previously stated then one doesn't have to turn away from sin in order to be saved.

Adventists say the way to be holy and fit enough to go heaven is to keep God's Law, the Ten Commandments. Galatians 3:3-8 tells us that if we believe we will be saved, it is counted for righteousness. Then in Galatians 3:10-13 tells us that no one is justified by the law. Christ was made a curse for us. One can see in Ephesians 2:8-9 that salvation has nothing to do with works and in Isaiah 64:6 it says all our works are as filthy rags. Check out our article on “Law and Grace” and you will find that one is not saved by works of the law or Ten Commandments. To see the truth of salvation see our article on “The New Birth” and also our article on “The Doctrine of Justification”.

When Christ did not return in 1844 as Miller had predicted ,Ellen Harmon, had a vision claiming that God showed her that Jesus entered the Holy of Holies in heaven to begin the Investigative Judgment, also known today as the Pre-Advent Judgment, as distinct from the final judgment. Seventh Day Adventists believe that when one dies they rest in their graves until resurrection. So, there is no necessity for any kind of judgment immediately after death. They believe that when Jesus returns he will bring His reward with Him so the judgment needs only to take place shortly prior to the Second Coming.

Adventists state that man is made up of two parts, of a body and a soul. However, the Bible teaches that man consists of three parts, a body, soul, and spirit, 1 Thessalonians 5:23; Hebrews 4:12; Genesis 2:7. In Revelation 6:9-11 it can be seen that after the body is buried the soul can sit on a throne, be tormented, thirst, talk and pray. For information on Soul Sleep see our article on Death and read the section on “Soul Sleep”. For information on the rewards of believers see our article “The Judgment Seat of Christ”.

In the article, “Why the Investigative Judgment Doctrine is Sound” by Mike Manea he writes, “if a person believes that: 1) Salvation can be lost 2) That God Judges 3) That the souls of men sleep until the resurrection 4) And, that this reward/punishment is not received until the resurrection. . .” First of all, salvation can not be lost and is a false teaching as explained in our article “Lose Salvation?”. Next, the teaching that the bodies and souls of men sleep in the grave until Christ returns is also a false teaching and is explained in our article on death under the section on “Soul Sleep”. Then the rewards after the rapture of the believers is just that, “rewards”, and not punishment. Punishment for sins is death, referring to the second death, which is eternal separation from God. This occurs at the end of the Millennial kingdom at the “Great White Throne Judgment”. Since neither losing salvation nor soul sleep are true and there is no judgment of punishments at the rapture, there can be no Investigative Judgment. These are not taught in the Bible.

Continuing with Seventh Day Adventists's doctrine on Investigative Judgment:
It is taught that Jesus entered the sanctuary in 1844 on His second and last phase of His atoning ministry, the Investigative Judgment.

Seventh Day Adventists teach: At the Investigative Judgment, "Jesus entered the Holy of Holies in 1844 to begin a review of the works and thoughts of those that have professed faith in Christ. The judgment is based on the Ten Commandments, and the character of each person will be tested by the standard of this law to determine his eternal destiny. Jesus will be sitting in the Holy of Holies looking at each persons sins to see who repented of those sins and who did not. Sins that are not repented of will not be pardoned and blotted out of the books of record and will be a witness against the sinner. If even one sin has not been repented of that person will not enter heaven. When this judgment is finished the rapture will occur."
According to Ellen G. White if one does not believe this doctrine they can not be saved.

The Truth: The Investigative Judgment is the Seventh Day Adventists attempt to cover the mistake they made in 1844, when Christ did not return to the earth as predicted. The Bible teaches that after Jesus died He was resurrected and appeared to men on earth and then Christ ascended into heaven and was, and is, seated at the right hand of the throne of God. He is the mediator for believers and is making intercession for them.

The truth is that Jesus did not enter into a sanctuary in 1844. Jesus entered the Holy of Holies in Heaven immediately after he ascended into Heaven, Hebrews 1:1-3; 8:1; 9:24. God's Word also teaches that a believers sins are not only forgiven but they are forgotten so there is no need of an unbiblical Investigative Judgment, Hebrews 8:12. Then too, a believer will never be called into a judgment of works to determine their salvation, John 5:24; Hebrews 9:28. Unlike the teaching of the Adventists, a believer can be assured of salvation, 1 John 5:13.

God is all knowing, He knows the number of hairs on our head and does not need an investigative judgment to know if we are saved or not. All Christian denominations have rejected the idea of an investigative judgment. It is an extra-biblical doctrine. The penalty, or the wages, of sin is death, Romans 6:23, but the gift of God is “eternal life”! This penalty was paid by Jesus on the cross and since it has been paid for there is no more condemnation, Romans 8:1. See our article on “Law and Grace”. How are we made righteous? See our article on “Justification”.

In the New Testament, we have Jesus Christ as our sacrifice for today, bearing our sins in His body on the cross. He was crucified, and our sins were thus lifted up and away from us, no longer resting upon us. Our sins were placed upon Christ and taken away forever. He suffered our penalty for sins, He Himself being the sin offering. Thus, the sacrifice of Christ met every claim of God's justice and holiness, forever removing our sins. We must understand that we are sinners, but our sins were paid for by Christ. When we repent (have a change of mind about sin and God) and believe in what Christ has done for us, we will have forgiveness of sins and eternal life, Hebrews 9:12; 1 Peter 2:24; John 3:14-17. From our article on “Forgiveness of Sins”.

Seventh Day Adventists teach: During the tribulation there will be a persecution of Sabbath keepers as the world imposes Sunday worship on all on people. Satan impersonates Jesus and declares Sunday as the Sabbath day. The papacy is the Antichrist, Protestants are the false prophet and the US is the enforcer. The persecution is the Great Tribulation which ends in the Battle of Armageddon between true believers and Sunday keepers who have the mark of the beast.
The Adventists will seldom mention it to those outside their church but they believe that all people who are not of the Seventh Day Adventists churches are lost and will be “annihilated”.

The Truth: The Adventists have it all wrong again. No where in God's Word does it mention the Sabbath in connection with the “mark of the beast”. One of the reasons for the Tribulation is to bring Israel back to God, and was first mentioned back in Deuteronomy 4:29-30. Jeremiah says that God will bring both the tribe of Israel and the tribe of Judah back into the land of their fathers to possess it, Jeremiah 30:3 It is also designed to bring an end to the forces of evil before the Millennial reign of Jesus Christ. Jeremiah adds to the description of this tribulation, and says that it is a great time that none is like it and is a time of Jacob's (Israel's) trouble, but they shall be saved, Jeremiah 30:7. Zephaniah explains the tribulation as a day of wrath, a day of trouble and distress, a day of waste and desolation, Zephaniah 1:14-18.

Today we see the Jews coming back into the land as promised in prophecy. When the tribulation begins, Israel will accept the rule of the Antichrist. The Antichrist will rule during the tribulation, but he can not rule until there is a falling away from true Christianity first. We have that falling away today, so the Antichrist could show himself at any time. The Antichrist can not reveal himself until the Holy Spirit is taken out of the way. The Holy Spirit that indwells each believer will be taken out of the way when believers are raptured, 2 Thessalonians 2:3; 2:7. After three and one half years, the Antichrist will be revealed as the man of sin, and savagely turn against Israel. At the end of the tribulation, the Antichrist is defeated by Jesus Christ, Revelation 19:15. The devil, the true power behind the antichrist and the false prophet, are then thrown into a bottomless pit, Revelation 20:1-3, where he will be bound for one thousand years, Revelation 8:3, and the Lord returns to the Mount of Olives, as He promised, Zechariah 14:4.

Seventh Day Adventists teach: The saved will spend the Millennium with Jesus in heaven. Sins of those that are saved are placed on Satan and he and his angels will be banished to the earth and wander around for the thousand years. During this time in heaven the redeemed will judge the lost, looking at their works to determine their degrees of punishment. Here is a quote from Ellen G. White, "It was seen, also, that while the sin offering pointed to Christ as a sacrifice, and the high priest represented Christ as a mediator, the scapegoat typified Satan, the author of sin, upon whom the sins of the truly penitent will finally be placed" The Great Controversy, p. 422

The Truth: After the second coming of Christ and the Judgment of the Nations, the millennial reign begins and we find God is ruling over the earth, in the person of Jesus Christ. His rule was prophesied by Isaiah in Isaiah 9:6-7. Luke said that He would reign over the house of Jacob (Israel) forever, and of His kingdom there would be no end, Luke 1:31-33.

The Jews are, today, gathering back into the land of Israel, the land today called Palestine. The Jews have occupied this land continuously for about 3,000 years. In an effort to erase any reference to the land of Israel, the Romans, in 135 A.D., changed the name to Palestine. At this time they will receive all of the land promised, which is about eight times as large as they have ever occupied. It stretches from the Mediterranean to the Euphrates River, and southwest to the River of Egypt,the Nile, Genesis 15:18; Ezekiel 48:1-23. Jesus, the King, rules in righteousness with a rod of iron, and there is universal knowledge of Him throughout the world.

With the thousand years of the Millennial kingdom coming to an end, Satan will be released from the bottomless pit. He will go out to deceive the nations, and to gather them to battle against the saints (believers), Revelation 20:7-8. The children that have been born during this time have not all come to know the Lord as their Saviour. These that are lost will follow Satan, and they surround the saints in the city of Jerusalem. and then God sends fire down from Heaven and destroys them, Revelation 20:9. Satan is then thrown into the lake of fire where he will be tormented forever, Revelation 20:10.

As can be seen, Jesus is not in heaven during the Millennium as taught by the Seventh Day Adventists. The only people entering into the Millennial kingdom are those that are saved and alive after the Judgment of the Nations. There will be many during the Millennial reign of Christ that will still reject Him. These are the ones that come up against the saints with Satan at the end of the Millennium. Keep in mind that all the lost are now dead with the soul and spirit in hell and those at the end of the Millennial reign of Christ will be killed by fire. These are the lost that are resurrected to appear at the Great White Throne.

Seventh Day Adventists teach: At the second coming of Christ everyone's fate will already have been determined at the Investigative Judgment. When the millennium ends, Jesus returns to earth with the redeemed and will descend inside the New Jerusalem. Jesus will raise the wicked from the dead and Satan will cause these to revolt against Jesus and His saints. They will come against the New Jerusalem and fire will engulf the earth while the redeemed are protected inside the New Jerusalem. The wicked will then be thrown into the Lake of Fire and will experience degrees of punishment and be annihilated.

The Truth: If you are a Christian you have probably noticed that the Adventists have the end times out of order. However, we are only taking a look at their teaching of some of the end time events. This teaching of the second coming is not Biblical. No where does the Bible mention that anyone will come up against New Jerusalem. After the thousand years Satan is released and goes out to deceive the nations and gathers them together to battle. Then when they have compassed the camp of the saints fire came down from God out of heaven and devoured them. This is all happening at the end of the Millennium and not during the second coming, Revelation 20:7-10.

The Second Coming of Christ is predicted in the Old Testament. Moses, writing in Deuteronomy concerning the Jewish people, says that Jehovah, Israel's God, will turn their captivity and gather them from all the people where He had scattered them. Today, God has regathered Israel into their land and they have been recognized as the nation of Israel since 1948. God promised to judge Israel's enemies and bless Israel abundantly, Deuteronomy 30:1-9. Here are a few more Old Testament references speaking of the second coming and the Millennial kingdom, Psalms 2:1-12; Psalms 24:1-10; Psalms 110:1-7; Isaiah 11:1-16.

The second coming will be an event that is clearly visible to everyone on earth. It will follow the rapture and the Tribulation. Christ will return “with” His church and establish the Millennial Kingdom on earth, Mark 14:61-62. Jesus, in these verses, not only claimed to be the Messiah but also proclaimed that He was equal to God. The Jewish leaders knew the Old Testament prophecies of the coming Messiah and His kingdom. Jesus was referring to Psalms 110:1-7, an Old Testament prophecy of the Millennial kingdom. When He comes He will come with His church to judge His enemies, to punish the nations and will set up His kingdom.

When Jesus told the High Priest in Mark 14:62 that he would see the Son of Man coming back on clouds of heaven He was telling the priest that He was the eternal ruler foretold by the prophet Daniel in Daniel 7:13-14. The kingdom Jesus Christ will set up is eternal and will never be destroyed. Some groups will say this is just symbolic and use their allegorical or spiritual method of intrepreting the Bible. However, this second coming of Christ to set up His kingdom is a literal, visible, and bodily return of Jesus Christ to the earth in wich everyone will see Him, Mark 13:26-27. This second coming will be a sad time for most people, a time of mourning says Matthew, because they have rejected Christ and the angels now begin to separate the lost from the believer's,Matthew 24:30-31, Revelation 1:7-8.

There are many more doctrines and problems that could be mentioned but I believe these are enough for anyone to decide whether the Seventh Day Adventists are a cult. Regardless, it has teachings that are not biblical and should be avoided. They have added to, changed, and taken away from God's Word, which is forbidden, Revelation 22:18-19.


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