Take a listen to this excellent presentation on the book of Galatians by the hosts of the White Horse Inn radio broadcast. This particular radio program (part 3 of a 5-part series) deals with law and grace plus the first and second Adam. So, sit back, relax, and click on the audio button to hear this important, biblical message. May God's richest blessings attend your quest for biblical truth.
PS: You are cordially invited to click on the "Modern Reformation" name on the upper right-hand side of the above-linked page. It is my distinct pleasure to wholeheartedly recommendMODERN REFORMATIONmagazine, a bi-monthly (published every two months) periodical dealing with theology, apologetics, and cultural issues. Get your FREE sample copy today! Dennis Fischer Web Chaplain
Charles Grandison Finney (1792-1875), the inventor of the so-called "anxious bench" or altar call, is rightly a very controversial figure in biblical Christianity today. His outright denial of the substitutionary atonement of Christ makes him a notable heretic instead of a pious saint. The following linked articles written by Dr. Michael Horton and Dr. Phillip Johnson expose, in factual detail, the many heresies of Charles Finney that still deceive and influence the Christian community in our day:
Modalism (i.e., Sabellianism, Noetianism, and Patripassianism)
This view teaches that the three persons of the Trinity are different "modes" of the Godhead, Adherents believe that the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are not distinct personalities, but rather different modes of God's self-revelation. A typical modalist approach is to regard God as the Father in creation, the Son in redemption, and the Holy Spirit in sanctification. In other words, God exists as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit in different eras, but never as triune. Stemming from Modalism, Patripassianism believed that the Father suffered as the Son. Modalism is akin to the teaching of Mormonism.
Tritheism confesses the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit as three independent divine beings; three separate gods who get along well together and have a similar purpose. This is a common mistake because of misunderstanding the use of the term "persons" in defining the Trinity.
Arianism teaches that the preexistent Christ was the first and greatest of God's creatures but denied His fully divine status. The Arian controversy was of major importance in the development of Christology during the fourth century, and it was addressed definitely in the Nicene Creed.
This view taught that Jesus Christ was a purely divine being who only had the "appearance" of being human. Regarding His suffering, some versions of this view taught that Jesus' divinity abandoned or left Him upon the Cross while others claimed that He only appeared to suffer (much like He only appeared to be human).
This view taught that while Jesus was endowed with particular charismatic gifts which distinguished Him from other humans but nonetheless regarded Him as a purely human figure.
This view believed that the Holy Spirit is a created being.
This view taught that Jesus was born totally human and was only later "adopted" --either at His baptism or at His resurrection--by God in a special (i.e., divine) way.
This view taught that the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit together are components of the one God. This led them to believe that each of the persons of the Trinity is only part God, only becoming fully God when they come together.
NOTE: Seventh-day Adventism was founded upon Arianism, and they openly teach Tritheism today. In biblical Christianity, each "person" of the Godhead is fully God. Jesus said, "He who has seen Me has seen the Father" (John 14:9 NASB). When Jesus declared that "the Father is greater than I" (verse 28), He was not admitting inferiority to the Father (after claiming equality repeatedly), but was saying that if the disciples loved Him, they would not be reluctant to let Him go to the Father because He was returning to the realm where He belonged and to the full glory He gave up.
He was going back to share equal glory with the Father that would be greater than what He had experienced in His incarnation. He will in no way be inferior in that glory, because His humiliation is over. Ellen White, the revered SDA prophetess and their infallible interpreter of Scripture, referred to the Godhead as the "three living persons of the heavenly trio," "the three great Worthies," "the three great powers," and other Tritheistic descriptions that Mormonism teaches as well. Sadly, Ellen White never got the Trinity doctrine right. For an in-depth, factual study of this topic, simply log unto: www.cultorchristian.com .
Eighth day was when the wave offering was presented to the Lord (Lev. 23:11).
Eighth day was when Pentecost was observed (Lev. 23:15-16).
Eighth day was a holy day of rest during the weeklong festival of booths (Lev. 23:36,39: Num. 29:35).
Eighth day was when circumcision was performed on Hebrew baby boys.
Eighth day was the consecration of the firstborn (Ex. 22:30; Lev. 9:1).
Eighth day was the fulfillment and conclusion of the priestly ordination (Lev. 9:1).
Eighth day was the day of offering in the cleansing of lepers, Nazarites, and those with a discharge (Lev. 14:10; 15:14, 29; Num. 6:10).
Eighth day was when Christ arose as the firstfruit of the dead (1 Cor. 15:20).
Eighth day was the day the Christian Church was born with the fullness of the Holy Spirit on Pentecost Sunday (Acts 2:1).
Eighth day was worthy of mentioning by the Apostle John as the "Lord's day" (Rev. 1:10). A day that the early believers clearly understood as the Resurrection Day (the greatest event in redemptive history). Already in about A. D. 100, the Didache confirms the Resurrection Day as being the corporate day of worship for Christians.
Like a birthday celebration or other special event, Sunday is not another holy day like the festal, weekly Sabbath was, but rather it is a very special day for Christ-followers around the world as a weekly Easter. Only the first day of the week (historically the Eighth Day) can be the "Lord's day." Since our Lord's resurrection is a historical and redemptive event in biblical Christianity, believers honor it with weekly, special assembly and contemplation of the Christ Event. Truly,not just any day could be this special!
Christians begin every week by honoring their risen Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Obviously, our awesome and sovereign God predestined (foreordained) the resurrection of our Lord to occur on Sunday. God's sovereign selection of Sunday, as the Resurrection Day, had absolutely nothing to dowith any religious or political leadership nor any cultural factors. Furthermore, Jesus repeatedly chose to specifically meet with His disciples on the eighth day following His resurrection. Therefore, it is of monumental importance to understand the historical and redemptive significance of the "eighth day" that culminated into being the Lord's Day or Resurrection Sunday.
Christians who worship on Sunday are sometimes asked, "Why don't you observe the Sabbath as commanded in the Ten Commandments?" The answer is simple. The Sabbath began before the commandments and outlived them. Let me explain.
It was only when God finished the work of creating the heavens and earth that He rested. The Sabbath, the rest of God, implies perfect satisfaction in what He had accomplished ("it was very good"). The seventh day was fixed by God to be a time of rest and joy for Himself and all creation. Since no more work had to be done, God rested. It was not because He was weary, but because He was finished.
God blessed the Sabbath and sanctified it, setting it apart from the days of His labors. What's more, God made man on the sixth day, so that the first day that dawned upon Adam was the Sabbath of God. Man immediately entered into the enjoyment of the Creator's rest. When God finishes His work, we benefit by entering into rest with Him.
But that rest was quickly destroyed by man's sin. The Sabbath was destroyed. The tempter came, man rebelled against God and the rest was broken. In the ages that follow man appears to have forgotten that the Sabbath was "made for man" not man for the Sabbath. It took Jesus to straighten out man's thinking (Mark 2:27-28). He is Lord of the Sabbath, and still some thinking appears to be confused about what the Sabbath means.
The Law entered when man sinned. The Law was a moral code, a schoolteacher to bring men and women back to God. The Law was designed to point men to Christ, God the Son. Therefore, the Ten Commandments specifically ordained, "Remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy" (Ex. 20:8). As long as man lived apart from God, He lived under the Law. But if we remember the law of the Sabbath without remembering the purpose of the Sabbath, we only remember the code and not the Christ.
Of all the Ten Commandments, the only one not repeated in the New Testament, the only one not germane to living under grace instead of law, was the Fourth Commandment—remember the Sabbath day, keep it holy, do no work, rest the seventh day. There's good reason for this omission. When God finished the work of creation He rested. When God finished the work of redemption again He rested (John 19:30). Jesus finished the work (John 17:4). He put away sin; the work of redemption was complete, and it was very good. The rest that existed fromCreation to the Fall was now restored. Jesus said, "Come unto Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest" (Matt. 11:28).
As Adam entered into God's rest after creation, we enter into His rest after redemption. Between these was the Law and labor. Keeping the Law never brought salvation, but it never brought rest either. Jesus is our Sabbath.The Christian worships the Lord on the first day of the week, the day Jesus rose from the dead, because that resurrection day was the day mankind again could rest in the joy of the Lord. The Sabbath pre-existed the Law and He lives again today in hearts unfettered by the Law.
SOURCE: The preceding Bible-based article was written by Dr. Woodrow Kroll, CEO and radio broadcast speaker of Back to the Bible International Ministries in Lincoln, Nebraska USA. Also, don't miss reading or listening to Dr. John MacArthur's sermon entitled, "Understanding the Sabbath (Genesis 2:1-3)" that was recorded live at Grace Community Church on September 20, 2009 (click here).
Are all of God's declaratives in the Ten Commandments of a moral stature? Seventh-day Adventist apologists continue to arbitrarily make such an unbiblical assumption. Is there not a mixture of ceremonial and moral elements within the Decalogue itself? After all, the Decalogue has been historically considered to be a basic summary of the 613 laws of the Torah. If the Decalogue had no ritual aspect in any manner, then it could not have been a true summary. What about the extra sacrificing by the priest (two male lambs without blemish) on every Sabbath, the meticulous showbread display in the Holy Place, and the male circumcision (the eighth day circumcision ritual always trumped the weekly Sabbath) requirements under the Fourth Commandment? Importantly, if the Mosaic Sabbath was actually a moral directive, then it would not have been consistently surpassed or infringed upon by ceremonial laws (i.e., circumcision, extra sacrificing, etc.). The other nine commandments in the Decalogue, being obviously of a moral stature, were never trumped by a ceremonial law for any reason. Truly, it is impossible to properly observe the festal, weekly Sabbath without the Levitical system being fully in place (the same holds true for tithing as well). Since devout Sabbatarians reluctantly admit that there is a dominant ceremonial element in properly observing the Fourth Commandment, the fact that the Jews were commanded in the Decalogue to keep the seventh day as a Sabbath cannot prove it to be a moral law. The weekly, festal Sabbath is listed as one of the seven convocations given to the "people of Israel" in Leviticus 23:1-3 (ESV). Why did God often criticize the Gentiles through the prophets for moral violations, but never criticized any Gentiles for not keeping the weekly Sabbath? Moreover, if the Sabbath is a moral law, why did Jesus break the Sabbath (John 5:17-18) without incurring sin? Why is Sabbath-breaking never listed as a sin in the New Testament? Interestingly, Jesus never compared the weekly, Mosaic Sabbath to any moral laws—only to ceremonial laws.
A moral law, unlike a ceremonial or ritual law, is in effect 24/7 (every nanosecond of time) and not merely once a year, season, month, or week. Also, moral laws are never trumped by any ceremonial laws (i.e., ritual circumcision on the eighth day, priestly sacrifices, weekly showbread placement, etc.), and they never allow any exceptions due to works of charity, mercy, or necessity for proper compliance. Surely, there is never a valid excuse to worship another god, to murder someone, to steal something, to commit adultery, et cetera. The Ten Commandments, as written by the hand of God, were only ten short and brisk commands (literally the "Ten Words" in Hebrew).
Inadvertently, many well-meaning people have often confused Moses' exposition of these commands with the commands themselves. For example, the Tenth Commandment according to the Apostle Paul in Romans 13:9 is, "You shall not covet." This is very short and simple. It was Moses who later gave several examples (Ex. 20:17) of the type of things that we should not covet (i.e., our neighbor's wife, house, servants, animals, nor anything else belonging to him). Moreover, due to the dominant male culture among the Hebrew people, the prohibition against coveting a neighbor's husband is noticeably absent, although one can reasonably argue that it is definitely implied.
Furthermore, when Moses explained to the Israelites why they should keep the Sabbath, he gave a different reason in Deuteronomy 5 than what he quoted God declaring in Exodus 20. While Moses in Exodus 20:11 referred to the creation week, in Deuteronomy 5:15 he omits any reference to the creation week and instead refers to the Exodus out of Egypt as the reason for Sabbath observance. If God Himself had literally written all the words (including the commentary) in Exodus 20:11 about the creation week on tables of stone with His own hand, Moses would not have edited or substituted them with a reference to their Egyptian slavery in Deuteronomy 5:15. Moreover, unlike the Jewish ritual laws, moral (ethical) laws never changed throughout the centuries, but the Sabbath and tithing laws differed in various Old Testament time frames. Lastly, but certainly not least in importance, it is geographically impossible for all men to keep the Sabbath. What would those in cold climates do without heat (Ex. 35:1-3)? Is it not true that a moral law can be kept anywhere?
Obviously, the Sabbath cannot be kept everywhere throughout the world due to lengthy periods of darkness and light in the polar regions. How can astronauts living on a space station, visiting an asteroid, or landing on the moon observe the Sabbath? What about astronauts orbiting the earth in various spacecraft? How can they faithfully observe the Jewish Sabbath when witnessing multiple sunrises and sunsets in a short period of time? How can the redeemed of all ages observe the festal, weekly Sabbath in the Holy City that "has no need of the sun or moon" (Rev. 21:23 ESV)? The Apostle John declared that "there will beno night there" (v. 25) "andnight will be no more" (Rev. 22:5 ESV). Consequently, as the Bible affirms, there cannot be a weekly Sabbath without a daily sunset. There will certainly be no need for sunset calendars in heaven. Moreover, the inhabitants of heaven will no longer yearn for the ritual laws of Moses to intensely gaze upon the fading shadows of the sun twice every week, but they will instead cast their eyes upon God the Son because their "lamp is the Lamb" Rev. 21:22 ESV). Eternal bliss is beyond the constraints of time and space that we are familiar with in this sin-cursed world. Unlike the reward of the redeemed in heaven, God has reserved agonizing, stark darkness for those cast into the "gloomy dungeons" of hell (2 Peter 2:4 NIV). Close your eyes for a few seconds and ask yourself, "Do I want to have a light-free existence throughout the ceaseless ages of eternity?" On the other hand, there is nothing even remotely dark, dim, fading, or shadowy in heaven. No form of darkness or dreariness would be appropriate for the holy, splendid atmosphere of heaven. The sober, biblical truth is that we will all spend eternity somewhere—in either heaven or hell (very limited choices). Additionally, the fact remains that the International Date Line is purely a man-made imaginary line weaving through the Pacific Ocean. In Samoa, for example, map makers (cartographers) have recently re-drawn the curvy International Date Line for economic reasons, and the weekly Sabbath (Saturday) has now become Sunday without any Popes or Emperors involved. These are issues that Sabbatarians will have to face increasingly in the future. In this digital age, willful ignorance and misinformation will no longer suffice for the facts. Moreover, it is economically and technologically impossible to shut down modern industrial society and major utility companies every Saturday. If, for example, the steel mills turned off their furnaces one day out of the week, it would be impossible to produce steel, for it takes a week for them to heat up sufficiently to begin production. The Ten Commandments, devoid of commentary and illustration, are as follows:
THE TEN COMMANDMENTS
You shall not have any other gods before Me.
You shall not make for yourself any idol.
You shall not take the name of Yahweh your God in vain.
Observe the Sabbath day.
Honor your father and mother.
You shall not murder.
You shall not commit adultery.
You shall not steal.
You shall not bear false witness.
You shall not covet.
Although the Christian calendar has no actual "holy" days, the Lord's day (Resurrection Day) is a very "special" day for Christ-followers around the world. The resurrection of Jesus Christ is the greatest event in redemptive history and the epicenter of the Christian faith. Truly, not just any day could be this special. After all, God Himself precisely planned (foreordained) the exact day of the week that Jesus would raise from the dead. Moreover, our sovereign God foreordained (predestined) the exact day that the Christian Church would be born (Pentecost Sunday). Our awesome God did not allow the slightest margin of error for these historic and redemptive events. However, Sunday is not a holy day in the sense of being actual holy time like the weekly, festal Sabbath was. When Jesus died, the Sabbath died. Those who still insist upon observing any shadow pointing to the cross are actually denying the glory, majesty, and reality of Jesus Christ. Indeed, it is high time for well-meaning people to stop Judaizing Christianity and to start Christianizing the world instead.
"The weekly Sabbath, i.e., Saturday, is not the real Sabbath. The true Sabbath is a rest; the Jewish Sabbath is a shadow, a picture of that rest. All the Old Testament shadows pointed to Christ...These Old Testament shadows were looking forward to the coming of the One who would fulfill these and thus end them. When the work of Jesus Christ was finished the shadows were no longer needed." (Excerpt taken from The Seventh Day, by Ray C. Stedman, 12-10-67, THE BEGINNINGS: Commentary on Genesis)
"O Lord God, grant us thy peace--for thou hast given us all things. Grant us the peace of quietness, the peace of the Sabbath, the peace without an evening. All this most beautiful array of things, all so very good, will pass away when all their courses are finished--for in them there is both morning and evening."
"But the seventh day is without an evening, and it has no setting, for thou hast sanctified it with an everlastingduration. After all thy works of creation, which were very good, thou didst rest on the seventh day, although thou hadst created them all in unbroken rest—and this so that the voice of thy Book might speak to us with the prior assurance that after our works—and they also are very good because thou hast given them to us—we may find our rest in thee in the Sabbath of life eternal." (Excerpts from St. Augustine; Bishop of Hippo Regius, 354-430 AD; My Confessions, page 328)
Someone aptly stated that "Adventists aren't even observing a shadow. They're honoring a literal day, not a shadow of reality but as the reality itself. They have made a creation into a holy icon." Interestingly, around the year A. D. 100, the Didache (the first known church manual) instructed Christians to "gather together on the Lord's day." In A. D. 155, Justin Martyr wrote a letter to the Roman Emperor Antoninus Pius mentioning that the early Church celebrated communion together on Sundays in honor of our Lord's resurrection. The following pungent statement from the pen of Ellen White, the revered SDA co-founder and prophetess, reveals yet another scare tactic to convince her readers not to forsake observing the Mosaic Sabbath: "Then I was shown a company who were howling in agony. On their garments was written in large characters, 'Thou art weighed in the balance, and found wanting.' I asked who this company were. The angel said, 'these are they who have once kept the Sabbath and have given it up.'" (Medical Ministry, page 123) "When a prophet speaks in the name of the Lord, if the word does not come to pass or come true, that is a word that the Lord has not spoken; the prophet has spoken it presumptuously. You need not be afraid of him" (Deut. 18:22 ESV). Furthermore, God's Word declares that "...the prophet who presumes to speak a word in my name that I have not commanded him to speak, or who speaks in the name of other gods, that same prophet shall die" (v. 20). Indeed, it is a very serious offense to falsely claim to be a specially-chosen mouthpiece for our awesome, holy God. All in all, both the Bible and Church history repeatedly attest to the fact that Christians assembled on the Lord's day beginning shortly after the resurrection of Jesus. The early Christians, by no longer observing ritual laws, wanted to show forth the true meaning of the Sabbath, which achieved its full purpose in the New Covenant of Jesus Christ, in whom we find our perfect, ultimate rest. "Come to me, all you who are weary and overburdened, and I will give yourest! Put on my yoke and learn from me. For I am gentle and humble in heart and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light" (Matt. 11:28-30 Phillips NT). The good news remains that there is an extraordinary Sabbath rest or "sabbatismos" (the only occurrence of this Koine Greek word in the NT) "for the people of God" (Heb. 4:9 ESV). In addition to the well-known New Testament passages found in Colossians 2:16-17, Matthew 11:28-30, Galatians 4:9-11, Hebrews 4:9-10, Revelation 1:10, and Romans 14:5-6, here are three additional noteworthy Early Church quotes on the weekly Sabbath as well: "If then, those who had lived in antiquated practices came to newness of hope, no longer keeping the Sabbath but living in accordance with the Lord's day, on which our life also arose through Him and His death..." (Early 100s AD) "But Sunday is the day which we all hold our common assembly, because Jesus Christ, our Saviour, on the same day rose from the dead." (Justin Martyr, 140 AD) "Christians must not Judaize by resting on the Sabbath, but must work on that day, rather honouring the Lord's Day; and, if they can, resting then as Christians. But if any shall be found to be Judaizers, let them be anathema from Christ." (Canon 29, Synod of Laodicea,384 AD) Centuries later, the renowned Protestant Reformer, John Calvin wrote: "However, the ancients did not substitute the Lord's Day (as we call it) for the Sabbath without careful discrimination. The purpose and fulfillment of that true rest, represented by the ancient Sabbath, lies in the Lord's resurrection. Hence, by the very day that brought the shadows to an end, Christians are warned not to cling to the shadow rite." (Institutes of the Christian Religion; Book 2, Chapter 8) Since millions of people live in Northern habitats, places where the "Sabbath" can be 3 months long during the summer and no "Sabbath" for 3 months in the winter, what should Sabbath-keepers do? Ellen White, the SDA prophetess, gave the following answer to this perplexing dilemma: "God made His Sabbath for a round world; and when the seventh day comes to us in that round world, controlled by the sun that rules the day, it is the time, in all countries and lands, to observe the Sabbath. In the countries where there is no sunset for months, and again no sunrise for months, the period of time will be calculated by records kept. But God has a world large enough, and proper and right for the human beings He has created to inhabit it, without finding homes in those lands so objectionable in very, many, many ways." (Ellen G. White, Manuscript Releases;Vol. 12 [Nos. 921-999], page 159) By the way, according to the Apostle John, heaven will have no sunsets forever (an "objectionable" environment for Adventist Sabbatarians). Should all the Russians, Norwegians, Canadians, Greenlanders, Swedes, and Alaskans living in these Northern regions (within or near the Arctic Circle) mass migrate to more moderate climates in order to live morally-acceptable lives? Adventism's ironclad solution? Just don't live there! Moreover, as would be expected, official Adventism does not waste its tithe money in a vain attempt to somehow publish weekly, sunset calendars for those regions of the world. However, unlike the ritual shadows pointing to the incarnate Christ (Col. 2:16-17), is it not true that God's moral laws can be observed even on the moon or on a space station?
Resting in Jesus, the true Sabbath Rest,
Dennis Fischer Web Chaplain
A UNIQUE PERSONAL EXPERIENCE
When my wife and I were driving to church on the first Sunday morning after officially leaving Seventh-day Adventism in 2000, we were most surprised to discover a policeman directing the congested traffic at an intersection about a half mile from the church. Moreover, a policeman directed traffic out of the church parking lot after the worship service as well. We had no idea that so many people in our community were active Christ-followers. We were further delighted to see church-goers entering Sunday School rooms and the worship center with Bibles in their hands. Strangely, we were taught that all non-Adventist churches were merely "synagogues of Satan." While still devout Adventists, we seldom had any reason to be driving around early on Sunday mornings. We are blessed to have scores of churches in our city that serve the spiritual needs of many believers among its 250,000 residents. Truly, as Adventists, we were living in a self-imposed isolated bubble—unaware of the heavy, bumper-to-bumper traffic in some major intersections every Sunday morning. Indeed, every Sunday morning, when we gather our families together and get into our cars and head off to church, we are announcing anew to our friends and neighbors that we love and worship our risen Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. As indicated earlier, we need to stop "Judaizing" Christianity and start "Christianizing" the world.
Universal atonement without universal salvation is a cold, gloomy doctrine. Jesus Christ sacrificially died to fully pay the penalty for the sins of all men, for the sins of some men, or for some sins of all men. What is the Biblical answer? Simply click here for an in-depth study on this important, salvific topic by Robert Reymond. Truly, getting the Gospel right should be our top priority. Thanks for stopping by! Dennis Fischer Web Chaplain
In the case of Seventh-day Adventism, their soteriological stance is most accurately defined as semi-Pelagianism (not Arminianism nor Calvinism). Semi-Pelagianism was a compromise between Pelagianism and Augustinianism (the latter akin to "Calvinism" whereby salvation is understood as the free gift from God alone). Semi-Pelagianism was formally condemned as a heresy by the Christian delegation at the Second Council of Orange in 529 AD. Moreover, in semi-Pelagian thought, the sinner cooperates or partners with God for his salvation.
In their view, salvation is not a free gift given by Jesus Christ alone. Sadly, Adventism does not embrace even one of the five doctrines of grace. Thus, their man-centered theology, in which faith is an act of the fallenwill of man, ultimately results in man saving himself with God's help. Man thereby proudly becomes the captain of his eternal destiny by having the final word about his salvation. This heresy actually puts God at the mercy of fallen man instead of the other way around. Jonah, the reluctant prophet, declared: "For my salvation comes from the Lord alone" (Jonah 2:9 NLT) It's all about Him! Soli Deo Gloria (to God alone belongs all the glory).
In Old Testament times, only certain selected "anointed ones" such as judges, kings, and prophets were filled or permanently indwelt with the Holy Spirit. Moses was the mediator of the Old Covenant. Moses truly stood between the people and God. That is no longer the case under the New Covenant. "Long ago, at many times and in many ways, God spoke to our fathers by the prophets, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed the heir of all things, through whom also he created the world" (Heb. 1:1 ESV). We no longer need prophets to stand between God and His people to dispense truth to them. That roleis now filled by the Holy Spirit in the life of each believer.
Therefore, the prophecy is fulfilled that "It will come about after this that I will pour out My Spirit on all mankind; and your sons and daughters will prophesy, your old men will dream dreams, your young men will see visions" ( Joel 2:28 NASB). In 1 Chronicles 25:1-7, we learn that to "prophesy" includes singing praises, playing musical instruments, and giving thanks to God in public. In the truest sense, New Covenant believers are all priests and prophets. Moreover, authentic Protestantism upholds the priesthood of all believers.
"The body of Moses: Moses died on Mount Nebo in Moab without having entered the Promised Land and was secretly buried in a place not known to man (Deut. 34:5,6). It would likely be that this confrontation took place as Michael buried Moses to prevent Satan from using Moses' body for some diabolical purpose not stated. Perhaps Satan wanted to use it as an idol, an object of worship for Israel. God sent Michael, however, to be certain it was buried. This account was recorded in the pseudepigraphal Assumption of Moses. Rather than personally cursing such a powerful angel as Satan, Michael deferred to the ultimate sovereign power of God following the example of the Angel of the Lord in Zechariah 3:2. This is the supreme illustration of how Christians are to deal with Satan and demons. Believers are not to address them, but rather to seek the Lord's intervening power against them." (Excerpt from TheMacArthur Bible Commentary, page 1983)
POINTS TO PONDER FOR ADVENTIST READERS: God didn't allow Moses to enter the earthly land of Canaan because of his blatant disobedience, but then God supposedly (according to SDA apologists) turned right around and took him to heaven instead. What punishment is this for his disobedience? Truly, such reasoning greatly belittles the consequences of sin. The only reason why Adventists do this amazing twist is to somehow get around the fact that Moses appeared with Elijah on the Mount of Transfiguration. Adventists rely upon the legendary, pseudepigraphal account known as the "Assumption ofMoses" to teach that Moses was resurrected from the dead and taken to heaven. Primarily, however, they ascribe to this unbiblical view because their revered prophetess affirmed it. The Bible nowhere even alludes to the notion that Moses' body was resurrected and taken to heaven.
Since Adventists don't believe in the dualistic nature of man, consisting of both material and immaterial entities (body and spirit), they are in a dilemma to figure out how Moses could appear with Elijah on the Mount of Transfiguration. Of course, if Moses was resurrected from the dead then Jesus would not have been the "firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep" (1 Cor. 15:20). This theological logjam clearly reveals that if we don't get Genesis right, it clouds our understanding of the entire Bible. The Bible is God's voice speaking to us. Any heretical thought superimposed upon Scripture creates immeasurable confusion.
Moses was such an icon in the mind of the Hebrew people that they couldn't bear the thought of him being dead and buried. Likewise, after 33 days from her third funeral, Ellen White was finally interred at the Oak Hill Cemetery in Battle Creek, Michigan. They just couldn't bear the thought that their acclaimed prophetess had actually died. After all, she was supposedly an "inspired" health instructor—although an often ailing one—who insisted that being sick is a sin.
Adventists had been so proud of having an actual living prophet in their midst, but now she had entered the state of nonexistence. She was "gone, gone" like Adventists speak of the deceased. She was now merely in the memory of God like a fallen sparrow. There was supposedly no continuation of her personhood, and she could not even "await" the call of the Lifegiver. Truly, not even God can resurrect someone who doesn't exist in any form. The very meaning of the word "resurrection" cannot denote being somehow restored from nothingness. The inherent miracle of the resurrection, as defined in Scripture, is certainly not a cloning process nor some form of re-creation/transmigration from extinction and/or nonexistence.
Moreover, in multiple statements, she had predicted that the second coming of Christ would be only a few weeks or months away at the longest. Consequently, Ellen White's death in 1915 became yet another disappointment in their time-setting pattern. This was the direct result of a few Millerites who were unable to bear the thought that they were actually wrong about October 22, 1844. Therefore, they invented an alibi (an exclusive "investigative judgment" theory) to still maintain their time-setting error and to save face at the same time.