Divine Assurance

By John Thiel, Audio: Divine Assurance

How much do you sense your need of Jesus?

John 14:27 Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you. Not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.

This Scripture illuminates the need of Jesus. Jesus brings to us a wonderful privilege and peace. Peace of what kind? Not as the world giveth. Not the kind of peace that we gain from the lack of happiness that the world can produce but a peace that only God can produce. The peace that Jesus speaks of here is a peace he gives unto you. It’s a peace that is at rest when everything around us is in tumult. I don’t know if you have heard the story of the competition between three artists and the different impressions that these artists had of what really is peace. One artist painted a picture of a family sitting together. The second artist painted a beautiful scene in nature and the third artist painted a very storm-tossed ocean. There in the ocean were rocks and crevices and the waves were beating up against these rocks with great crashing and there in the side of that rock, that huge rock, was a little cave and inside of that cave was a dove with her little ones sitting in the nest. He won the competition because that was a true representation of the peace that only Jesus can bring, a peace amongst troubles and conflicts that surround us.

Do We Need That Peace?

Do we need a peace that comes from an assurance, a divine assurance? Do you know whether your life is on the correct path? There is a way that ‘seems’ right unto a man. This is very frightening that Satan can give such beautiful senses of tranquillity and assurance that we are on the right path. Yet they might be on a path that leads to death. There is a way that seemeth right unto a man but the ‘ways’ thereof are the ways of death. Your belief system must truly mean the assurance of eternal life at the end. Are you confident that you are part of the fold of Jesus Christ and that you know confidentially and are assured by divine assurance that the body of Jesus is where you are? We have a need of exercising logical reasoning, reasoning from cause to effect.

Happy is the man who has discovered for himself that the word of God is a light to his feet and a lamp to his path. Happy is the man who has discovered for himself, the correct word that is light to his feet. A light shining in a dark place, it is heaven’s directory for men but there are many oh, so many, who have no guide, beside the opinions of finite men, prejudice, passion, or their own changeable feelings, their minds are in a state of irritation and uncertainty, they suffer continually from mental fever. TDG page 188:

Do you know that experience? Mental fever? Uncertainty? Heat inside of the brain because you know that you are uncomfortable in a certain path but the word of God keeps on saying, no this way. You are being tossed about and then someone says, no it’s this way. Opinions of men even within church affiliation. Prejudices, passions and changeable feelings are what many people look upon as their guide.

Were you following Christ the word of God? Would he be to you as a pillar of cloud by day and pillar of fire by night, but you have not made the honour of God the first object of your life work? The teachings of the divine directory are not to be ignored or perverted. The divine mind will guide those who desire to be led. Truth is truth and it will enlighten those who seek for it with humble hearts. Error is error and no amount of worldly philosophising can make it truth. In the message for this time we have an assurance, a sure foundation and sound pillars to become acquainted with. What is the assurance we may have? To get rid of that feverish brain, that sense of insecurity that so frequently bombards us.

Revelation 14:12 Here is the patience of the saints, here are they that keep the commandments of God and the faith of Jesus.

Can you see two monumental pillars of assurance here? The commandments of God and the faith of Jesus. If you are looking for the pure message, if you are looking for the church that carries Gods pure doctrines, to the law and to the testimony.

Isaiah 8:20 If they speak not according to the law and to the testimony [of Jesus] there is no light in them.

There is an identified company of people in Revelation.

Revelation 12:1 The dragon was wrath with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.

Isn’t it phenomenal how the scriptures connect so that the people who want to find an assurance that they have light and they may know they are on the right path, the Bible identifies them? If they speak not according to the law and to the testimony there is no light in them. Here in the last days there are a remnant people identified by the commandments of God and the testimony of Jesus Christ. Doesn’t the Bible lay out before us a complete assurance so we must have both these pillars in the place for our divine assurance? The commandments of God and the faith of Jesus. Let us examine especially the faith of Jesus and discover that this faith of Jesus is actually the central pillar. Whilst the commandments of God are a pillar, the faith of Jesus is the central Pillar.

The Faith of Jesus

The third angel’s message is the proclamation of the commandments of God and the faith of Jesus Christ. The commandments of God have been proclaimed, but the faith of Jesus Christ has not been proclaimed by Seventh-day Adventists as of equal importance, the law and the gospel going hand in hand. I cannot find language to express this subject in its fullness. {3SM 172.2}

The law and the gospel go hand in hand. I can’t find language, she says, to get this straight, to enlarge it in its fullness. The faith of Jesus it is talked of, but not understood. We are getting a very strong message from inspiration here that the majority of Seventh Day Adventists talk about it but do not understand the faith of Jesus.

What constitutes the faith of Jesus that belongs to the third angels message? Jesus becoming our Sin Bearer, that he might become our sin pardoning Saviour. He was treated as we deserve to be treated. He came to our world and took our sins that we might take his righteousness. And have faith in the ability of Christ to save us amply and fully and entirely is the faith of Jesus. (Ibid)

This is what Sr White says she wishes she could find words to enlarge. Notice this picture of the faith of Jesus that he partook of our sin so that we might partake of his righteousness so that by that transaction of Jesus in all reality we might be secure and be able to be saved amply, fully and entirely.

The man with a cultivated intellect may have vast stores of knowledge, he may engage in theological speculations, he may be great and honoured of men and considered the repository of knowledge. Unless he has a saving knowledge of Christ, crucified for him, and by faith lays hold of the righteousness of Christ, he is lost. (Ibid)

Does that strike deep? We might have all the knowledge of theological truth and even have the knowledge of the law just like the Pharisees. They knew the law through and through. They even knew prophecy so that when Jesus was born in Bethlehem they knew how to direct the wise men. We might have a high intellectual capability. We might know everything there is to know but if we do not have a saving knowledge of Christ crucified for me and by faith lay hold of the righteousness of Christ, I am lost. Do you have a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ? I want to make sure that I have a saving knowledge of Christ crucified and lay hold of the righteousness of Christ. If I don’t have that, I’m lost. If I am a preacher of Gods words and I don’t communicate it as it really is and you don’t partake of it, you are lost too. That is what portrayed to us. We need assurance don’t we? This is our quest. Jesus said don’t let your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid, I’ve come to bring you assurance and peace.

Before our Lord went to his agony on the cross, he made his will. He had no silver or gold or houses to leave his disciples. He was a poor man as far as earthly possessions were concerned. Few in Jerusalem were so poor as He. But He left His disciples a richer gift than any earthly monarch could bestow upon his subjects. Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you. He left them the peace that had been His during His life upon earth amid poverty, buffeting and persecution and which was to be with Him during his agony in Gethsemane and on the cruel cross. The Saviour’s life on this earth though lived in the midst of conflict was a life of peace. No storm of satanic wrath could disturb the calm of that perfect communion with God. He says to us, ‘my peace I give unto you.’ Those who take Christ at his word and surrender their souls to His keeping, their lives to His ordering, nothing of the world can make them sad when Jesus makes them glad by His presence. In perfect acquiescence there is perfect rest. Heavenly Places page 249.

The Atonement

How can you gain this peace? Surrender your soul to his keeping and ordering and then you will find peace and quietude. It is my burden to communicate with you this perfect acquiescence. What does that word mean? Something which you have been fighting but finally resign yourself to. Resigning is to yield, submit and conform. To resign oneself. The Latin word that it comes from is rest. When you are fighting something there is no rest. When you finally submit to something there is perfect acquiescence. This word links me immediately with atonement, perfect At-One-Ment. It immediately links me with this beautiful mystery that the gospel speaks of. Here is this amazing picture available to us through this atonement.

Colossians 1:26 Even the mystery which has been hid from ages and from generations but now is made manifest to his saints. 27To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the gentiles. Christ in you, the hope of glory.

There is perfect rest in the midst of tumult. He met every confusion of mind.

The mission of Christ so dimly understood, so faintly comprehended, that called him from the throne of God to the mystery of the altar of the cross of Calvary will more and more unfold to the mind and it will be seen that in the sacrifice of Christ are found the spring and principle of every other mission of love. Heavenly Places page 319.

How much do you need Jesus? Jesus became one with us, this mystery of the atonement.

Romans 16:25 Now to him that is of power to stablish you according to my gospel and the preaching of Jesus Christ according to the revelation of the mystery which was kept secret since the world began.

Here is an atonement that is dimly understood that if we do not have it, we are lost. It is something which we need to have in our mind because it’s Christ in you the hope of glory.

Perfect Acquiescence

Philippians 2:5 Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: 6 Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: 7 But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: 8 And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.

Can you see perfect acquiescence? Perfect atonement. He could have resisted, he could have fought against it but he gave into it. He gave himself over and as he did he laid out for us the meaning of perfect acquiescence. Let this mind be in you that was in Him. This mystery we need to understand that is revealed to us that if we know everything else but we don’t have this, we are lost. The pillar of Christ, his faith is the thing that makes the whole thing central.

You Can Have the Ten Commandments and Still Miss Out

The incarnation of Christ is a mystery. The union of divinity with humanity is a mystery indeed. Hidden with God even the mystery, which hath been hid from ages. It was kept in eternal silence by Jehovah and was first revealed in Eden by the prophecy of the Seed of the woman should bruise the serpent’s head and that he should bruise His heel. To present to the world this mystery that God kept in silence for eternal ages before the world was created, before man was created was the part that Christ was to act in the work He entered upon when He came to this earth. This wonderful mystery, the incarnation of Christ and the atonement that he made must be declared to every son and daughter of Adam. His sufferings perfectly fulfilled the claims of the law of God. Bible Commentary Volume 6 page 1082.

The Commandments of God and the Faith of Jesus

Can you see which one of the two is absolutely crucial as it’s connected with the other? Isn’t it the incarnation of Christ, this mystery? It is so dimly understood. This is what Sr White wrote Adventists are not proclaiming in all its fullness. Consider the reality and the balm of this saving knowledge. We are told that you and I must have a saving knowledge of Jesus and we are to embrace that knowledge and make it your experience. What balm, what peace and assurance there is in it for you and me

1 Timothy 3:16. Without controversy great is the mystery of godliness. God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory.

Fear of Death

Hebrews 2:14. For as much then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same. That through death he might destroy him who had the power of death that is the devil and deliver them through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage.

Do you have fear of death? If you don’t, you’re not a normal human being. We talk in the nursing profession, when someone is fighting for breath – why? When you can find something getting you by the throat, when you can find something taking away your life, you will fight for life. You will go for it and the more you fight for it the worse it gets. We are frightened of death but when Jesus comes in and we understand savingly we will yield and relax. When people really relax after they are in a life-threatening situation they relax. After people faint they relax. When they come to, everything is fine again. But at the time what caused the fainting was terrible fighting for life. Here is the balm of the acquiescence. Perfect peace. He partook of the same flesh and blood that I have. For what? So that he could die. He couldn’t have died if he wouldn’t have been in the same flesh. What is the wages of sin? Death. When Jesus partook of this mysterious incarnation, what did he partake of? The same flesh. Here are a few Bible texts that we don’t need a theological degree to understand;

Romans 8:3 For what the law could not do in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin the flesh.

How can Jesus have the likeness of sinful flesh when we know he was so pure and perfect? Why was he so pure and perfect? Because he condemned sin in the flesh. The flesh was sinful flesh and where was sin in sinful flesh? Let’s establish our assurance on the written Word Not upon the opinion of theologians.

1 Peter 2:24 Who his own self bore our sins in his own body, on the tree, that we being dead to sins should live unto righteousness by whose stripes you are healed.

Where were they? Upon him and in his flesh. Here is the mystery so dimly understood that the sins that you and I feel that pulsate through our system that lead and goad to commit wrong thoughts and actions. That was the sin that was in the body of Jesus Christ. He had a battle to fight to be obedient and he had to conquer the sin in his flesh.

Hebrews 5:7 Who in the days of his flesh, when he had offered up prayers and supplications with strong crying and tears unto him that was able to save him from death, and was heard in that he feared; 8 Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered; 9 And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him;

What was His experience on this earth? In the days of His flesh, what did He have to go through to learn obedience? The battle between the spirit and the flesh. He had to conquer that. He had to suffer the things of the flesh to learn obedience. Can you appreciate this saving knowledge of Jesus? What a blessed comfort that is in our experience when we are struggling and so defeated many times. We keep on saying but I’m only a human being, I keep on failing and I keep on sinning. Look to Jesus.

Hebrews 12:1 Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about by so great a cloud of wittiness, let us lay aside every weight and sin which dost so easily beset us and let us run with patience the race that is before us. 2 Looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who, for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God. For consider him that endured the contradiction of sinners against himself lest you be weary and faint in your minds.

We don’t have to faint. We can conquer because Jesus the mystery of the incarnation has brought to us an invitation of perfect acquiescence. Perfect union with him, as he is perfectly one with us.  What does the mystery of this perfect atonement if understood produce? If people do not have this saving knowledge of Jesus they will be lost.

Romans 16:26 But now is he made manifest and by the Scriptures of the prophets according to the commandment of the everlasting God made known to all nations for the obedience of faith.

The Mystery Made Manifest

The revelation of the mystery which was kept secret since the world began but now is made manifest. What is the mystery made manifest for? To what conclusion? Made known to all nations for the obedience of faith.

Colossians 1:27 Christ in you the hope of Glory. So we can be presented before God without fault.

Isn’t this the big argument of the theologians of today? They say we can never keep the commandments of God. We have to try hard but we’ll never keep them. Then there are those who say yes we can definitely keep them and they put all their effort and they claim they are keeping them. But they are lost. Why? Because their obedience does not exceed the righteousness of the Pharisees.  They do not understand the saving message of Jesus so that their obedience comes from the motive of perfect acquiescence and from perfect atonement. Through understanding that Jesus is beside me and I am no longer troubled. I will rest my soul in him and I will perfectly yield and stop fighting. I will let him take complete control of my life, ordering, directing and leading my path I don’t know where but I know the end result.

When we have this saving knowledge and there is an assurance that is beyond all others, here is the patience of the saints. They patiently look to Jesus and they keep the commandments of God and the faith of Jesus. It is evident that the incarnation of Christ is not understood through all Christianity.  Anyone who claims to be a Christian is meant to be built and upheld by this central truth. This is the truth that the apostolic church was built on. If any variation of this truth was taught, an alarm was raised against it.  We have just seen this beautiful comfort, rest and assurance for my personal salvation. It is something we need to enlarge and ponder on more and more. It will unfold more and more. As it does, it will lead you to greater heights of obedience to God. It will purge his people. If you don’t have this, the apostles raised the alarm bells.

Another Gospel

Romans 16:25 Now to him that is of power to stablish you according to my gospel, and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery, which was kept secret since the world began,

What did the apostle Paul say? What gospel? My gospel which was the mystery. His gospel. Let’s see the alarm bells that were raised by the shepherds of the flock of early Christianity. If you read the whole book of Galatians you will notice they were trying to be saved by keeping the law without understanding the saving knowledge of Jesus.

Galatians 1:6 I marvel that you are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel.

What did he call it? Another gospel.

Galatians 1:7 Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ. 8 But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. 9 As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed.

How serious is the contortion of this subject? Let him be accursed. The gospel that I have just outlined this mystery of Christ in you through the incarnation that Sr. White says is a mystery indeed but must be revealed which is so poorly understood. If the teachers of the gospel do not preach this, let him be accursed.

2 Corinthians 11:2 For I am jealous over you with godly jealousy: for I have espoused you to one husband, that I may present [you as] a chaste virgin to Christ. 3 But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtlety, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ. 4 For if he that cometh preacheth another Jesus, whom we have not preached, or [if] ye receive another spirit, which ye have not received, or another gospel, which ye have not accepted, ye might well bear with [him].

Notice the reference to one body and one flesh? One connection. Note it says another Jesus. The Jesus who was in flesh like you and I. The Jesus who really did have sin in his flesh, the Jesus who really did have sin in his flesh so that he might be our example. If anybody preaches another Jesus, God is jealous over you.  What frightful danger when people are beguiled by Satan into another gospel. It is still the gospel of Jesus Christ they claim. Yes Jesus did all these things, he did become a man, they agree with all that but they are preaching another Jesus. Not the Jesus with the sinful flesh which you and I have which is the mystery of the incarnation.

Galatians 1:11 But I certify you, brethren, that the gospel which was preached of me is not after man.

12 For I neither received it of man, neither was I taught it, but by the revelation of Jesus Christ.

13 For ye have heard of my conversation in time past in the Jews’ religion, how that beyond measure I persecuted the church of God, and wasted it.

It’s not after man theologically working things out. It is what was revealed to me. It was the gospel of the apostle. They proclaimed the pure gospel. How easily the true gospel can be lost. The apostle said in Galatians, what happened to you? I marvelled that you were so soon removed from it. Has this happened to Christianity ever since? Have they lost the true gospel? Have they taken hold of the wrong Jesus? In Paul’s jealously over the flock he warned the people. He named those who were teaching the error.  I sometimes imagine naming the people who teach the error. I then have people pouncing on me saying you shouldn’t be talking like that. Listen to the apostle Paul; listen to him who is jealous over his flock.

Acts 20:29 For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock. 30 Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them. 31 Therefore watch, and remember, that by the space of three years I ceased not to warn every one night and day with tears.

If we do not have a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ, we are lost. With tears he pleaded with them. I sometimes wonder whether I should be doing this when I see people drifting away from the pure gospel.

Jude 1:3 Contend earnestly for the faith once delivered to the saints.

What does contend mean? You are going to fight for the truth, you are going to uphold it and you are going to contend for it.

1 Timothy 4:16 Take heed unto thyself, and unto the doctrine; continue in them: for in doing this thou shalt both save thyself, and them that hear thee.

How carefully he warned and was prepared to expose the counterfeiters of the pure gospel.

1 Timothy 1:18-20. This charge I commit unto thee, son Timothy, according to the prophecies which went before on thee, that thou by them mightest war a good warfare; 19 Holding faith, and a good conscience; which some having put away concerning faith have made shipwreck: 20 Of whom is Hymenaeus and Alexander; whom I have delivered unto Satan, that they may learn not to blaspheme.

Name Those Who Teach Error

How would you like to be a member of the church and the minister to say they were the ones I delivered unto Satan? He named them. What were they doing? Blaspheming.  Isn’t that what the Catholic Church eventually did? What was Jesus telling them to do with the unfaithful ones? Get rid of them. I am very happy that you are against them in certain stages as he speaks. They were removed.  Why should these people be named? Why should these false doctrines be identified? Can you make sense of it? If people can’t quite understand this mystery and then they get false doctrines, those who clearly can see what is going on have to warn the flock don’t they? Here is where the danger is. Can you see it?

2 Timothy 2:17 And their word will eat as doth a canker: of whom is Hymenaeus and Philetus; 18 Who concerning the truth have erred, saying that the resurrection is past already; and overthrow the faith of some. 19 Nevertheless the foundation of God standeth sure, having this seal, The Lord knoweth them that are his. And, Let every one that nameth the name of Christ depart from iniquity.

Here are erring teachers. He identifies and names them. What does Jesus do in Revelation? Who does he identify here?

Revelation 2:15 So hast thou also them that hold the doctrine of the Nicolaitans, which thing I hate. 16 Repent; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will fight against them with the sword of my mouth.

The Doctrine of the Nicolaitans

There was a company of people that existed in the Christian church called the Nicolaitans. If there is in the Christian church people that have perverted the doctrine, are we going to say, oh, we must not say anything about them? According to Jesus what must we do? We must identify them as Jesus did.  What is the doctrine of the Nicolaitans? The doctrine is now largely taught that the gospel of Christ has made the law of God of no effect. That by believing we are released of the necessity of being doers of the word. But this is the doctrine of the Nicolaitans that Christ so unsparingly condemned. Can you see Jesus nailed it down and he identified the people who were preaching it? Should I do the same? I am going to. I am going to let you see for yourself. I am going to let you see from the word of God and what the word of God identifies about these people.

1 John 4:1 Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world.2 Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God: 3 And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world.

The Bible identifies the people who preach that Jesus Christ did not come in the flesh are of the spirit of anti-Christ. The Catholic Catechism says something very interesting about the nature of Christ. When people read this they think that it’s going to be easy.

The Catholic Catechism

There have been men who refused to believe that God would humble himself so much as to become really man. They taught that Jesus had only the appearance of a man. We know that Gods love is such that he sent his Son down to become a real man. Really one of us. He took the nature of a slave. As Paul tells us, fashioned in the likeness of men and presenting himself to us in human form. Jesus had and will have forever all that makes a real man. He had a man’s soul that was directly created by God as ours was and a man’s body that he took from his mother. He had all the powers of a man, his mind learned in the way ours does. He used it to think to know to plan and to judge. He had a man’s free will, he had a man’s love, and with it he loved his Father and loved all men for the sake of his father. His body was in every way a man’s body with the senses and powers of a man. It had the needs of a man’s body, food and rest. It could feel weariness and pain as a man’s body can. It developed from babyhood, to boyhood, to the full manhood as every man’s body does. He had the feelings of a man and he showed those feelings as a man does. Joy in his faithful friends, sorrow at hard-hearted pride and betrayal, sympathy with others in their sorrows. Because he was a real man, he could suffer for us both in body and in soul. Catholic Catechism.

Do you agree with all this? It’s true isn’t it? Are they of the spirit of the anti-Christ? We know they are anti-Christ. But do they teach the truth?

Hebrews 4:15 He has been through every trial, fashioned as we are, only sinless. Douay Bible.

Because he is all holy he could not possibly sin and he did not have impulses rising up within him and tempting him such as we have as the result of original sin. (Ibid)

They sounded so good for so long and then all of a sudden they come up with the devil’s perversion of the true Jesus. Do you know that this is why so many people today do not recognise that the Catholic Church is wrong? We can recognise it better but they can’t recognise it in the spirit of the other churches.

The Seventh-day Adventist 27 Fundamental Beliefs

Both Adam and Christ, the last Adam or the second man represent all humanity. While the natural birth saddles each person with the results of Adam’s transgression, everyone who experiences the spiritual birth receives the spiritual benefits of Christ’s perfect life and sacrifice. For as in Adam all die even so in Christ shall all be made alive? Adam’s rebellion brought sin condemnation and death to all. Christ reversed the downward trend. In his great love he subjected himself to the divine judgement on sin and became humanities’ representative. His substitutionary death provided the deliverance from the penalty of sin and the gift of eternal life for repentant sinners. Scripture clearly teaches the universal nature of Christ’s substitutionary death. SDA 27 Fundamentals.

They had this absolutely right, just like the Catholic Catechism. Once upon a time the SDA church taught it exactly correct;

SDA Bible Readings for the Home Circle

In His humanity Christ partook of our sinful fallen nature. If not then He was not made like unto His Brethren, was not in all points tempted as we are, did not overcome, as we have to overcome and is therefore the complete, perfect Saviour man needs and must have to be saved. The idea that Christ was born of an immaculate or sinless mother inherited no tendencies to sin and for this reason did not sin; removes him from the realm of a fallen world and from the very place where help is needed. On his human side Christ inherited just what every child of Adam inherits, a sinful nature. On the divine side from the very conception he was begotten and born of the spirit as all are and all this was done to place mankind on vantage ground and to demonstrate that in the same way everyone who is born of the spirit may gain like victories over sin in his own sinful flesh. Thus each one is to overcome as Christ overcame. Without this birth there can be no victory over temptation and no salvation from sin. God in Christ, condemned sin not by pronouncing against it merely as a judge sitting on the judgement seat, but by coming and living in sinful flesh and yet without sinning. In Christ he demonstrated that it is possible by his grace and power to resist temptation, overcome sin and live a sinless life in sinful flesh. Bible Readings for the Home Circle. Page 174 1915 edition.

One hundred percent correct isn’t it? He had sinful flesh. This is now from the ministry written by the Adventist leadership to its people, and to the ministers who teach the people:

The Ministry

When he Christ took upon him sinless human nature, he did not cease to be God. [Notice the first mistake, sinless human nature] Many years ago a statement appeared in the Bible Readings for the Home Circle the 1915 edition [as quoted above], which declared that Christ came in sinful flesh. Just how this expression slipped into the book is difficult to know, but when that book was revised in 1946, this expression was eliminated. Since it was recognised as being out of harmony with our true position. When God became man, he partook of the same moral nature that Adam possessed before the fall. The Ministry – September 1956.

What is the public standing of the SDA church today? A repudiation of what they once stood for.

Differing with the positions of the church on nonessentials. While apostasy always takes its toll, one of the heavy pressures on the remnant church today is the divisive effect of some segments of the church who nevertheless profess dedication to Christ and the finishing of the mission of the church. These members hold certain positions on the human nature of Christ, the nature of sin, and the doctrine of righteousness by faith in an end-time setting. Since the Adventist people as a whole do not share these views, the former feel that the church has apostatized from the faith of the pioneers. Some would even suggest that the organized church is no longer fulfilling the role of the remnant church as specified in prophecy. The SDA Church Point 4:

In some respects the present situation is similar to the experience of the early church and the Jerusalem Council. The world church of Seventh-day Adventists has agreed on 27 fundamental beliefs.

A summarization of basic Biblical teachings, and seeks to rally the membership to the Saviour and this core of Bible truths. The specific topics alluded to above are not a part of these summarizations. The world church has never viewed these subjects as essential either to salvation or to the mission of the remnant church. The scriptures do not make these subjects central; the data is sparse; and there are sharp differences of view with devoted Christians on both sides. There can be no strong unity within the world church of God’s remnant people so long as segments who hold these views vocalize and agitate them both in North America and in overseas divisions. These topics need to be laid aside and not urged upon our people as necessary issues. We should not let Satan take an advantage of God’s church at this point and allow such matters to divide us and, consequently, to weaken our outreach and fellowship. SDA Church Point 4

The humanity of the Son of God is everything to us. It is the golden chain that binds our souls to Christ, and through Christ to God. This is to be our study. Christ was a real man; He gave proof of His humility in becoming a man. Yet He was God in the flesh. When we approach this subject, we would do well to heed the words spoken by Christ to Moses at the burning bush, Put off thy shoes from off thy feet, for the place whereon thou standest is holy ground (Ex. 3:5). We should come to this study with the humility of a learner, with a contrite heart. And the study of the incarnation of Christ is a fruitful field, which will repay the searcher who digs deep for hidden truth. {1SM 244.1}

There are many who err, and who feel their shame and folly. They look upon their mistakes and errors until they are driven almost to desperation. These souls we are not to neglect. When one has to swim against the stream, there is all the force of the current driving him back. Let a helping hand be held out to him, as was the Elder Brother’s to the sinking Peter. Speak to him hopeful words, words that inspire him with courage. Tell him of an almighty hand that will hold him up, of an infinite humanity in Christ that pities him. It is not enough for him to believe in law and force, things that have no pity, and never hear the call for help. He needs to clasp a hand that is warm, to trust in a heart full of tenderness. Keep his mind stayed on the thought of the divine Helper ever beside him, ever looking upon him with pitying love. Bid him think of a Father’s heart that ever grieves over sin, of a Father’s hand stretched out still, of a Father’s voice saying, Come unto me, . . . and I will give you rest. {RH, January 19, 1911 par. 8}

The Seventh-day Adventist Reform Movement

I was once part of a membership of the Seventh-day Adventist Reform Movement that said this about the nature of Christ via a declaration they made in 1999: They say like the others say that Jesus Christ did come in the same human flesh as us  but then they say:

While He, Christ took our fallen nature we believe in harmony with what is written that in him there is no evil propensity to sin but that he was tempted from without, not from within. SDA Reform Movement – Glad Tidings Magazine.

They are saying exactly the same thing as what the Catholic Church is saying. There was no sinful impulses coming through him. They follow on to say;

Christ partook of our sinful nature and was thus encompassed with infirmities, weaknesses, and liabilities but he had no evil propensities in human nature. Evil tendencies are evil propensities or evil leanings, inclinations and bias. These reside in our mind, not in our physical flesh. Christ had none of these in his mind or flesh. SDA Reform Movement – Glad Tidings Magazine.

Shall we be silent and not identify false teachers? The central pillar of the SDA three angels messages is the faith of Jesus, the experience that Jesus made in our sinful flesh. If that is deranged we have no saving knowledge of Jesus Christ. We need to identify through the flock, the error and who teaches it just like Paul. The commandments of God and the faith of Jesus give you a divine assurance that you are saved through the precious gift of the atonement of Jesus Christ in the incarnation and you can follow his example and deal with your sin in your sinful flesh in exactly the same way as Jesus dealt with his. Anyone who teaches different is of the spirit of the Anti-Christ.  Through this understanding you can be assured where it says if they do not speak according to the law and to the testimony there is no light in them. They might have all the other truths right but if they do not proclaim it with living application, there is no light in them. We must all stand up and be counted on the very central pillar of the SDA faith that was once delivered to the saints. That we would watch ourselves and the doctrine and uphold the pure doctrine that is the central pillar that upholds every other doctrine so that we don’t become confused by false teachings that are around us today. There has been a sad destruction of pure truth in the ranks of Christendom today but praise God that all the central pillars of the faith have been delivered to God’s people. Let us uphold, preach, teach and agitate them to the ends of the earth for then Christ can come when the true gospel is restored.

Amen.

Posted on August 19, 2009, in Divine Service Sermons, The Nature of Christ and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.

  1. JEREMIAH OTEMO

    Most of the SDA Church Movement claim and cling to the fact that they are the only pure remnant church on earth and that any person claiming to be a Seventh-Day Adventist yet working out of the order of the General Conference [GC] is an OFF SHOOT! One prominent member by the names of Steven K. Billiter has been strongly arguing and using strong statements that Christ will still use the SDA Church until the last minute when the Sunday law will be passed and then Christ will purify the whole system to perfection. He quoted that “The Church may seem to fall but it does not fall…” H openly confessed before me through his writings that the SDA Movement purposely TRADEMARKED our name because some HERETICS are using it illegally! I came to learn from him later that he was referring to Historic Adventists as HERETICS!
    He also admitted that the TRINITY DOCTRINE is both taught by the Bible and Ellen White’s writings. Although I have not done thorough research about this doctrine, but I believe that it is from the Catholic Catechism and the strongest doctrine of the Roman Catholic fundamental teachings and beliefs.
    Our people completely deny this fact the message in Rev.14:12, and they believe and teach that it is only the SDA Church MAIN STREAM that constitutes the Remnant church!
    With the TRADEMARKING of the SDA NAME, we can see another serious inquisition emerging forward. All who will not belong to the Mother SDA will be regarded as Heretics. This is the language of the Papacy since the dark ages.Satan is taking chances and putting on a different stamp to be less recognized. We better be on guard when we are unmasking Anti-Christ in 1John 2:18. We have one great anti-Christ and other anti-Christ. Same with Rev. 17:5. We have the Roman Catholic Church as the Mother of other harlots or fallen Churches.

  1. Pingback: The Human Nature of Christ by the SDARM « Sermons for Sabbath Keepers

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