March 20, 2017
It is clearly stated by and commonly accepted by orthodox Adventists that the final decision concerning man's salvation is made by Jesus in the Sanctuary based on the track record of the believer. That means that the final word on our salvation is unknown to us and if and when and whether one is saved or not is not decided until one endures 'the searching scrutiny of Christ's investigative judgment to determine if we are worthy of eternal life." This simply means that the absolute knowledge on our part about our own salvation is not possible and will not be known until eternity begins. The lives of the dead and the living are examined and when all are examined, then the time comes for the return of the Lord. If my life has already passed in review and I didn't pass, I will never know that until it is too late for me, because the decision has been made. What kind of salvation and certainty and assurance is that? There is absolutely no way I can hope to wiggle out of this conclusion which was reached by EGW and all the historical commentators among orthodox Adventists.
Why then does it take an omniscient Savior years and years (over 160 so far) to review the records if he is omniscient? That is not an unfair question I believe. And why is Jesus reviewing the sins of the believer if the plain teaching of the New Covenant is that "Your sins and iniquities I will remember no more?" And why are we up for review if Hebrews 10:14 says, "For by one offering, He has made us perfect forever." And why if Jesus said in John 5 that "we will never come into Judgment." This is the very word used of and for lost people when they are banned for all eternity from God's presence. And why does Paul say in Romans 8:1 There is no "condemnation" to those in Christ Jesus? That word through the entire New Testament and Greek literature, speaks of the appearance of a person before the tribunal with an indictment.
And why does one need to even be reviewed or judged at the Investigative Judgment if there is no possibility of "not ever perishing" as Jesus said in John 10? My interlinear Bible shows this as a double negative. All the commentaries express that this statement means absolutely unconditional. Otherwise His assurance was simply hyperbole. And in John 6 Jesus said all that the Father had given Him would come to Him and of those would "never be cast out" and He went on to say. "I will lose none of them."
And finally EGW said, that Oct. 22, 1844 was the very first time Jesus went into the holy of holies to be at the Father's right hand and to begin the work of the Investigative Judgment. The New Testament says that He went there immediately at his ascension and Steven even saw Him there as he was being martyred. Do I somehow have cognitive dissonance?
I hope I am being fair and honest with the truth of Scripture in context. Bob Koivisto
Bob, just as a note of encouragement, as I am going back through the EGW quotes there are a couple of things that are striking me. 1st- what you seem to be suggesting that they are saying is not entirely accurate to what she seems to be saying when I go back through the rest of the section from which the paragraphs you have shared. So I think it is possible that there are some misunderstandings that we can figure out what they are and where they are coming from when we are able to sit down and study together. 2ndly- Every point that she is making in the paragraphs you have shared I have found Bible passages that say the same thing. In short, I am not sure that it is a reconciliation between what EGW says and what the Bible says that is needed as much as reconciliation between what the Bible says in one place with what it says in another place.
I haven't a lot of time right now to dig too much deeper as I am preparing for a week of prayer at our local school in a month, but that is what I am seeing so far after the little digging I have done. Perhaps the best place to start is to pull EGW out of the equation for a while and spend your study time on what the Bible says about the investigative judgement and then work backwards after you have established the Bible foundation. Then you can compare EGWs teachings on the topic and see how they apply. I suggest a good place to start on the study is the parables of Jesus concerning the second coming. So far every one that I have looked at teaches the Investigative judgement and do it in such a way that many common misconceptions of it are put to rest. I think if you take this approach your heart will be warmed and encouraged by the incredible grace of our God. Just my 2 cents.
I would enjoy the opportunity for us to sit down and study and learn together on this topic at your earliest convenience after you are back this way again. And I look forward to hearing from your friend. May God bless you richly as you continue to seek for truth as it is in Jesus.
March 12, 2017
Jerry, Dr. Ray Cotrell was an Adventist professor and teacher and expert in the Hebrew Old Testament and he and 4 others were assigned by church leadership to find, prove, and defend the Investigative Judgment from the Book of Daniel. They tried for 5 years to substantiate from the text the traditional SDA interpretation of the text. They could not substantiate the doctrine. If one of the world's greatest Hebrew scholars and Adventist theologians together could not substantiate the teaching, what are we to believe. The committee was told by church authority simply to be quiet and teach what has always been believed. Those I know who speak and read Hebrew fluently cannot find this interpretation either. I should think that those who read Hebrew as a mother tongue wouldn't all reject the SDA interpretation, if was clearly in the text. Every commentary I have seen and studied, even going back to the Church Fathers, seems ignorant of this very special interpretation of the passage. If the Scripture had all we needed "for life and godliness", then God must have had a reason for keeping the entire Church in the dark until 1844 about the "central doctrine of the church?" I wonder what that was?
I have read the committee notes (not part of the attachment) and they are very detailed and discuss why this is the case. I have included below what professor Cotrell discovered and has personally put into writing. Does it not seem strange that this "central doctrine" of Adventism was never taught in the Old Testament, or taught in the New Testament or by the Apostles especially in light of the verse in Jude which says that "the faith, was once and for all time delivered to the saints?" How do we explain this contradiction? I would find you comments valuable in the light of Dr. Cottrel's exposition and explanation of the Hebrew text of Daniel.
I will most certainly reply to what you have written me back to my original questions when I make sure that you and I understand equally what Dr. Cotrell has found. And did I misunderstand what EGW said in the quotations I included originally that our salvation ultimately depends ( for the living and the dead) on our thoughts, our words, our behavior, our confessed and unconfessed sin and lack of faithfulness? This is the historical understanding of Adventism. If we are never informed when we have or will go through the IG process, how then can we rectify anything so we make sure we are truly saved, and how can we fix anything if we have already gone through the process, and what can the dead do clear back to Adam if they didn't pass the "searching scrutiny of his investigative judgment?" And who can even know if they made it or not until it is too late to do anything about it? Your friend, Bob Koivisto
Sorry Pastor Ramirez could not answer your email as he would have liked to due to time constraints and so he asked me as one of his elders if I would be willing to do so.
Thanks for your letter regarding the nature of salvation in relationship to the Investigative Judgment. I want to assure you that every verse from the Bible that you placed in your letter
regarding the free gift of salvation, the mercy of God, our present uncondemned state, the completed work of Christ on the cross as an all sufficient sacrifice for our sins is believed by those who are Seventh-day Adventists, and were believed by Ellen White and all of the founders of the this church. I can understand exactly where you are coming from and am also very glad that you are studying these teachings and that you are asking such good questions.
Regarding Froom’s statement I think it is correct, for there are many groups among the protestant churches that have similar views on many subjects as we do. But, none hold the investigative judgment assessment. This is unique to Adventism and we believe is an advance step forward, a part of the unsealing of the book of Daniel that heretofore had not been completely understood.
If you follow the Hebrew economy closely you will find that The Passover which commemorated the churches removal from Egypt pointed forward to the exact day of Jesus death. The waving of the first fruits of the barely harvest took place on the very day of His resurrection. Pentecost came 50 days later at the same time as centuries before the giving of the Ten Commandments had occurred on Sinai. Should it then surprise us, if our understanding is correct that at the end of the 2300 days a sanctuary would be cleansed tantamount to the very day on which the Jewish Day of Atonement occurred in the year 1844 and that it had to occur at the end of 2300 literal years according to the well-known year day principle? Something occurred at the end of the 2300 years which the Jews always believed was to them a day of judgment for the sins of the past year which were at that time cleansed from an earthly sanctuary by an earthly priesthood. The feast also of the trumpets preceded the annual Day of Atonement by ten days, as a time of preparation and heart searching for a sealing work on the Day of Atonement, at the end of the year. The work of reformers worldwide in the early 1800’s and especially under Miller who preached the coming of the Savior in October of 1844 definitely had the event wrong, for it was not the coming of Christ, but Millers work began in 1833 some ten years previous to its fulfillment which seems typical of the ten days of Jewish trumpets preceding the cleansing of the Day of Atonement. Miller and his associates were wrong, but was the time wrong? We have researched that as a denomination a thousand times over from every angle and can find no error in the time. Therefore, their erroneous proclamation was an announcement of something which they did not understand. In a similar manner those who proclaimed Christ’s coronation at his triumphal entry into Jerusalem did not know they were in reality announcing His sacrifice.
If we had not seen this truth, what could we have added to the sum of Christian knowledge, for our beliefs have been, albeit some, in embryo form, held by the reformers of the protestant reformation, and many by different groups for ages?
Would our God have allowed something so momentous as the final phase of Christ’s priesthood in the heavenly sanctuary to have gone unannounced to the world in view of the fact that it was the antitype of the final phase of the Jewish religious year before the announcement of the new year’s day, which in type refers to the great jubilee, the Advent of Christ, and the raising of the dead in the first resurrection? Is it not a clarion call to earth’s inhabitants to prepare and be watchful for one of the next acts in the drama will be the real day of his coming that none but the Father himself can announce?
The next thing I think it would be well for us to look at is an aspect of the atonement which will give a summary answer that should cover all of the elements which I see in your objections; such as the idea of a personal probation and how can this be reconciled with the text in John 5:24 that whoever believes on the one who sent Christ shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life. It sounds absolutely unconditional does it not?
But think with me for a moment about Adams life before the fall. Was he on probation? We know he was and that he failed. He had to be tested in order to make him fit for some higher work and that’s why the tree of knowledge of good and evil was placed in the garden. Now he was in a different state than we presently are for he was made perfect, with all his faculties sharp and healthy his mind well balanced and clear. His body was the temple of the Holy Spirit just as every true believers person is today. I am pointing this out to make an important comparison that when a man is converted he is brought in one sense to the same place as Adam was. He now knows God, though he does not visibly see him as the first man and woman. He does not have the same stature and bodily vigor as our first parents, but his mind has been brought like Adam’s into harmony with God. He has become, in a sense another person like Adam, and his destiny has become like Adam’s, dependent on his own choices in relationship to the revealed will of his creator. Therefore when you and I are restored by conversion to the image of God, which causes us to love all that is righteous good and holy we are in a presently saved condition just as Adam was before his fall. Then we might ask what made this possible? You guessed it, one thing alone , something Adam never needed until his fall, the blood of Christ. So then, we have been given a second chance, like Adam was, in the promises given to him of a redeemer to come. Since the fall of man everyone who has named the name of Christ has been put on probation like the first Adam. We are no longer under condemnation, for we are walking in the law of God and shall not come into condemnation so long as we walk the walk.
Think of the new believers state, he is forgiven, not by any works of righteousness that he has done, he stands legally justified before God, and this legal righteousness in the courts above is given by the saving blood of the sin pardoning savior and nothing can ever be added or subtracted to what He has done upon the cross. But, the forgiven sins are sins of the past. “Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: Whom God hath set forth [to be] a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God;” Romans 3:24, 25. But, what about sins that will be future? These, of course are spoken of as committed by Christians who, “crucify to themselves the Son of God afresh”, and why are they spoken of that way; because they are done by those who have received the greatest legacy that can be given to man, but have in a sense, by their sin despised the free gift of salvation. Yet, at the same time I feel certain that, no person who has ever tasted of the peace of God has ever lived with absolute perfection from that day forward, and so forgiveness must be given again, providing that there is sincere repentance for that sin.
We believe that also Adam was forgiven of his sin, for he begat a son in his own image, and that was Seth who became the progenitor of a righteous line of men.
Now let’s take this a step farther; when the record of the justified’s trials and tribulations, yes, and even their sins since they confessed Christ come up in this investigative judgment there are some witnesses who are aware of their lives, one of which is Satan, who is the accuser of “the brethren” Revelation 12:10, as well as myriads of unfallen angels, and who knows how many other created intelligences. The question may come up, “How are we going to let this person into the glories of heaven with access, ultimately to all creation. Look, he murdered, he committed adultery, he became angry, he lied, yes, he ate of the forbidden tree? Because of this there must be an investigation of the nature of his life since he claimed the forgiveness offered to him, as to whether his conversion was really genuine and whether in view of his terrible failures he should be allowed to associate forever with unfallen beings. The question might come up, would he not bring the same problems into the universe again that Christ was sent to earth to solve? Here is where Christ’s priesthood becomes a necessity. Jesus has passed over the same ground as every human being is faced with. He knows whether the individuals repentance was genuine, and for all his mistakes he will stand in for him, if it was genuine, and say to Satan, “: “And the LORD said unto Satan, The LORD rebuke thee, O Satan; even the LORD that hath chosen Jerusalem rebuke thee: [is] not this a brand plucked out of the fire?” Zechariah 3:4. This process, of falling and rising again leads toward the attainment of a life like Christ’s and as long as the individual does not give up the fight Christ’s righteousness will cover him and his sins will be blotted out of the books of record in the great judgment, to be remembered no more. Will he then be worthy of eternal life? Yes, he will, because he relied upon the mercy of forgiveness, until he could become in full an overcomer. I say relied upon, not as abusing Christ’s gift, but as one striving with all his powers to attain to the beautiful example set before him of a completely sinless life.
To summarize this: Adam was on probation in the beginning, and we are on probation too. And might I add that Jesus was also on probation and could have failed, but thanks be to God that he didn’t.
Regarding the aorist verb form (Romans 8:30) you are most assuredly right that there are a string of verbs that are in the aorist, in the indicative mode and when in the indicative mode are believed to point to past completed action. This completed action cannot be completed action from our point of view but must be from God’s point of view. We may view it of ourselves in the present as we have an inward witness that we are his elect, and therefore we believe we are that saved group. But God alone knows who ultimately His children will be and the whole creation looks forward with anticipation to that revelation (Romans 8:19). We cannot take this to mean that a man cannot turn away if he chooses, for God will force himself on no one, neither will he violate our freedom.
But, as far as the Lord is concerned it all is already in existence, for he knows who the saved are, but as far as we are concerned our glorification is yet future but assured if we continue in His word. If we violate His word and still feel we can go on doing that and then be saved then Jesus died to save men in their sins and not to save them from their sins and to give them power to become overcomers. For God “will render to every man according to his deeds:
“To them who by patient continuance in well doing seek for glory and honour and immortality, eternal life: [This “for” in the passage seems to me to refer to those already in Christ not as feeling they could not fail but still seeking]
But unto them that are contentious, and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, indignation and wrath,” Romans 2:6-8.
Bob I have enjoyed so much writing to you and I am sure that this letter hasn’t answered all your questions, so please continue to write and I would be happy to continue some correspondence with you, if you would like.
God bless you, it’s always nice to discuss God’s word with those who are sincerely seeking to understand it better
A Brother in Christ,Jerry
Dear Brother Koivisto,
Thanks for your question in regards to the finished work of Christ and its relationship to the judgement.
The Bible is very clear that both the righteous and wicked stand before God in judgement. Rom. 14:10. No one is exempt from the judgement because they are in a saving relationship with Christ. However, believers will stand in the judgement, the ungodly will not. Ps. 1:5
I am assuming that you have a knowledge of the sanctuary service in the Old Testament. Prayerfully study this and it will give you a clear understanding of the plan of salvation.
If there are any further questions feel free to email me.
Dr. Willie J. Wright
7:44 AM (16 minutes ago)
Dear Pastor Wright,
I still don't understand how your comments to me change the issue. EGW clearly said that our words, our thoughts, our behavior, our sins of omission and commission and our failure or success in keeping the law and having unconfessed sin all determine the outcome of our salvation as believers "undergo the searching scrutiny of his investigative judgment to determine if we are worthy of eternal life." This heavenly process determines our destiny and destination.
This entire process, according to EGW, takes place in the heavenly sanctuary, without our knowledge or consent "beginning with the cases of the dead, and then moving on to the cases of the living." Actually we can never know the outcome of that judgment until it is too late to do anything about it. I am not making this up my friend. This comes directly from the writings of EGW and all the historical writers and interpreters of what EGW wrote and said.
In my study, I can find this teaching about the investigative judgment of hers nowhere in the OT or NT or in the writings of the early fathers or historians of the Church. Why not?
As far as I can see, Jesus in John 5 says there is no judgment awaiting for the believer, no indictment, no trial, no sentence and no condemnation. The believer is excluded from this final judgement being described in this chapter, as far as Jesus is concerned..John 5:24
24 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation;(literally judgment) but is passed from death unto life.KJV
Am I mistaken that under the New Covenant, (Jer. 31, Hebrews 8 and 10) that the believers' sins are permanently excluded from even being considered by God because He says "your sins and iniquities I will remember no more." Why is Jesus being being so disobedient to the Father's promise that he keeps dredging up and remembering and holding believers accountable for their sins, when the New Covenant promise is not to remember the believers' sins which are all under the blood of the New Covenant? What did I miss? I am asking sincerely, and trying not to argue. Have I completely missed the message in the New Testament concerning the finished work of Christ?
I looked up the Greek word for judgment in John 5 and in the context as well, the reference is to the final judgment where sentence is pronounced on lost people. Even this reference has nothing to do with the investigative judgment process which takes place during time by Jesus in heaven of believers which determines their destiny for all eternity.
In Romans 8:1, I discovered that the Greek word for no condemnation means that believers will never be called by the judge into the courtroom. What am I missing?
Romans 14:10 as it describes the BEMA seat judgement , is the place the rest of the New Testament describes as the place of rewards or loss of rewards, not a place where judgment of unbelief is made. Nothing recorded here about this being a judgement of being saved or lost forever, as EGW describes the investigative judgment.
Paul says the following about this BEMA seat judgement :1 Cor 3:12-16
12 Now if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble;
13 Every man's work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man's work of what sort it is.
14 If any man's work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward.
15 If any man's work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire.
No evidence here as far as I can see looses salvation or is condemned to a Christless eternity. Did I miss something?
I looked up the lexical meaning in Hebrew of "stand in the judgment" from Psalm 1:5 you quoted, and it says literally that the "wicked cannot withstand the judgment."
How then does that bolster your argument that the "the believers will stand in the judgment, the ungodly will not?" What have I missed, and I ask that with all the sincerity I can. And I recognize that my eternity depends on the right answer. Are you still willing to help me with this matter?
Your patient friend, Bob Koivisto
In order to answer and address your first question concerning “has God already decided who is to be
saved……removing the freedom of choice from human beings with regard to salvation”, we must
establish certain criteria and exposit certain passages of Scripture in context. You cited the following
passage when asking the question you wanted addressed.
29 For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he
might be the firstborn among many brethren.
30 Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified:
and whom he justified, them he also glorified.
Does the passage show God as reactive in that He “looks down the corridors of time to see what a man
will decide” and then include that man among the saved? Or does the passage show God being pro-
active and acting independently of mans’ choice? The prima fascia Iook at the passage and in context
shows God acting sovereignly and in his omniscience, and without the permission and action of another.
The plain and usual understanding of foreknow actually means to “know beforehand”. Those humans
who were called in verse 28 are those who were called beforehand in verse 29 and were predestined
(meaning that their destiny was determined by God). Is God’s forknowledge coupled with the rest of
these acts only a result of knowing ahead of time what men will choose to do and then simply reacting?
Is God’s foreknowledge ever coupled with his sovereign action and determination?
23 Him, being delivered by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God, ye have taken, and by
wicked hands have crucified and slain:
1 Peter 1:2
2 Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father…….
It is obvious that God’s foreknowledge cannot be uncoupled from the rest of His attributes and actions
and is not simply a passive attribute of His omniscience. His foreknowledge indicates that what He
foreknows, He has also determined.
(προώρισεν) This is the Greek word used for predestined and literally means to mark out the horizon or
to decide beforehand. What is it that God decided beforehand? The answer is soteriological in the
context of Romans 8, in that mans’ salvation is in view. All these key verbs used here in these two verses
are in the aorist tense and as you know, I am sure, that this means that an accomplished or completed
event or action is in view. God sees this as done. Those whose destiny was decided as accomplished and
ahead of time were ones who were called and invited. What was also considered as accomplished in
advance? The called were justified (ἐδικαίωσεν) and declared righteous by God in advance of any
decision by a man and into which God did not need to “look down the corridors of time” and anticipate.
And ultimately God sees those whom he has chosen, foreknown, called, predestined, justified now fit
for glory. All that was needed for a believer’s salvation was the work of God on his behalf. God alone has
the power and authority to make a man fit for heaven.
You asked if there was a “freedom of choice” for humans in regard to salvation. In those passages in
context concerning mans’ choice in salvation, there is no reference to mans’ autonomous and
independent free will. What enables man to respond positively to the call of God? And it must be asked
also in the matter of salvation, what role does human volition play?
The answer of course must come plainly from Scripture. We have several choices. One choice is
synergism, in which salvation is a cooperative role between God and man. Even if mans’ role is only 1%,
it is still a role of some kind of cooperation between God and man and hence synergistic. The other
choice is monergism in which God alone and entirely brings dead men to life and then when men are
made alive by God, they respond positively to the Gospel.
Some of our best insight on mans’ role and God’s role in salvation is found in the words of Jesus in John
37 All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out.
38 For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me.
39 And this is the Father's will which hath sent me, that of all which he hath given me I should lose
nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day.
40 And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may
have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day.
I t appears with just a superficial reading of this passage, that those who gain salvation, are themselves a
gift by the Father to the Son. The promise in verse 37 is that all in the category of the “given” will come
and those who come will never be “cast out.” This word literally means driven away or sent away. The
strongest form of the negative in the original literally says “not never.” The negative is double as in Jesus
assurance of salvation in John 10:28. They shall never (οὐ μὴ) ever perish. The statements by Jesus in
both passages are unconditional and absolute and without exception.
Jesus also has even more comments about those given to him by the Father in verse 39, for it is the
Father who is the Sovereign and Proactive one in his choosing and giving of men to the Son. Jesus
guarantees the certainty, security, and safety in salvation to those whom the Father has given to the
Son. All that are given are safe from loss and their security is guaranteed as well as their ultimate
resurrection. It is clear from the text that Jesus is addressing individual salvation and the raising up of all
And finally in verse 40, Jesus again reaffirms to the believer everlasting life (not conditional life) and the
guarantee of resurrection. God plans for mans’ salvation are all are under his full care, custody, and
In these several following passages which we will examine, we can very clearly see whose will was
exercised when a man comes to God. One might take the opportunity to ask if human freewill with
regard to salvation is ever taught in Scripture?
No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the
It is clear that no man can come to the Father without the Father’s action. What is that action of the
Father and can it be resisted? The best way to determine the meaning of the word draw in Scripture is
to see how the word is used in the context in Scripture. The meaning and use of draw in Scripture is
quite dramatic and is much stronger that the traditional translation here in John. Never the less, it is the
action of the Father which brings men to Christ. Let us take a look at the word draw (ἑλκύσῃ) as it is
used in the New Testament and we will also have a good clue if God’s call can be resisted. Literally the
passage says that unless and except men are brought by the Father to the Son, they cannot and will not
come. Because the verb is in the subjunctive mood, there is no potential in coming to the Son without
the intervention of the Father. Let us take a look at the use of our root word for draw in several places in
the New Testament.
30 And all the city was moved, and the people ran together: and they took Paul, and drew him out of the
temple: and forthwith the doors were shut.
This act on the part of the people was to bring Paul out to kill him. This drawing was not an invitation to
a tea party but a forceable removal from the temple which was unavoidable.
19 And when her masters saw that the hope of their gains was gone, they caught Paul and Silas, and
drew them into the marketplace unto the rulers,
Paul and Silas were not put into velvet handcuffs and gently led away, but irresistibly taken to jail and
6 But ye have despised the poor. Do not rich men oppress you, and draw you before the judgment seats?
It is quite clear that the Christians were being overpowered by the rich bullies and sued and taken
before the magistrate.
In any of the examples cited, is permission ever asked for and given by those who are “dragged away”
by the power and will of others? Is the will of those who are taken away overcome?
Is there still any doubt that men are brought to Jesus by the independent and irresistible action of the
Father and is there any doubt that God “works all things according to the counsel of his own will?”
It is also necessary to search the Scriptures completely and look carefully at what role the Divine will and
the human will have in coming to salvation and responding to the Gospel.
What does the Scripture say about the nature of man and his ability and desire to choose God in and of
I am very disappointed by your email. I fail to understand your claim
that I "ignored" the three central passages of Scripture about the
Christian and judgment. I acknowledged those passages and agree that
there is no condemnation for anyone who is in Christ. Ironically, it
was you who ignored and failed to respond to the passages of Scripture I
shared with you which point to everyone (including Christians) facing
judgment. You said nothing about Jesus' words in Matthew 12:33-37 or
Paul's statement that we will all face judgment in Romans 14:10 or
Peter's words regarding the judgment in I Peter 4:17.
Regarding Christ's ministry in heaven after His ascension, you can study the book of Hebrews, especially chapter 9.
On the vindication of God's character, I already shared with you Ezekiel 36:22-24. If God desired to vindicate His name before heathen nations, would it be any surprise that He would want to do the same before heavenly beings? Yet, you gave no response to this.
I don't know what your source is for the beliefs of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, but it is not accurate. The official teaching of the Seventh-day Adventist Church is that a person can have complete assurance of salvation the moment Jesus is accepted as Lord and Savior. Seventh-day Adventists do not believe that the second coming of Jesus is invisible and neither the Seventh-day Adventist Church nor Ellen White have ever set a date for the second coming of Jesus. I have no clue where you get your "5 times" from.
I found your accusation about me drinking Kool Aid to be rude and disrespectful. It is certainly not the kind of comment I would expect from someone claiming to be a follower of Jesus. I have taken the time to answer your questions because I believed that you were sincere in wanting to learn what Seventh-day Adventists believe. However, your last email demonstrates to me that you are not interested in learning, but simply wish to attack Seventh-day Adventists beliefs. If I have misread your email, please correct me. Otherwise, I think it best we end our correspondence and stop wasting each other's time.
Lyle, it is difficult to have a discussion with someone who ignores the plain teaching of Scripture. I gave you three central passages about the Christian and judgment. You skillfully ignored all three which are plain as day from both Jesus and Paul. Both teach that there is no guilt, no indictment, no trial, and no sentence for the believer because all guilt for all time was nailed to the cross. The judgment seat of Christ is the Bema (a reward stand) It is explained in I Cor 3. 1 Cor 3:11-15
11 For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ.
12 Now if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble;
13 Every man's work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man's work of what sort it is.
14 If any man's work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward.
15 If any man's work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire.
Salvation is not and never will be the issue at this judgment. Rewards and lack of rewards is the issue. Please read verse 15 carefully. What does it say?
As kindly as I can say it, you are believing a lie and misrepresenting the teachings of your leaders and misrepresenting and misunderstanding God's accountability. He who is Lord of creation does not need to "vindicate His character to the entire universe." This is demonic lie and a complete twisting of God's word.
2 Peter 3:16
16 As also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things; in which are some things hard to be understood, which they that are unlearned and unstable wrest, as they do also the other scriptures, unto their own destruction.KJV
EGW plainly taught as did and do those who teach her works, that the investigative judgment is for "all believers from Adam forward and to include the living" to determine if the are "worthy of eternal life." She clearly teaches that behavior, unconfessed sin, obedience to the commandments, and sins of commission and omission all have their role in "deciding our destiny." My salvation is by grace alone through faith alone, in Christ alone. You as an Adventist can never know until it is too late. Has Christ gotten to your name yet? Did you pass? "He who has the Son has eternal life..." I don't need to wait for the non-omniscient Jesus to take the time to get through all those names. I am seated with Him in the heavenlies. How about you?
God does not and cannot hold any believer accountable for sin because the heart of the New Covenant is "your sins and iniquities I will remember no more." The Son listens to the Father, do you?
Please, teach me about Jesus not going to Father's right hand until 1844 when the Scripture says 24 times that he went there at his ascension. Where does the Scripture say otherwise. Where does the Scripture say that the Lord's second advent would be invisible and every eye would not "see Him?" Tell where the Scripture says he would simply change locations in heaven. Tell me where forgiven sin would be reviewed by Jesus to determine if the believer is "worthy,"
Tell me anywhere that the Scripture says that the purpose of all this is to vindicate God. God is accountable to no one, and "works all things according to the counsel of his own will."
Stop drinking the Kool Aid my friend and begin drinking from the water of God's word. You have believed a false prophet. 5 misses on the date of the Lord's return should be a clue. "He who has the Son of God knows he has eternal life."
Certain and Secure, Bob
No man can say I am saved until he has endured test and trial, until he has shown that he can overcome temptation (The Kress Collection, Pg.120).
This class claim that Christ came to save sinners, and that He has saved them…such teaching is a gross deception (Bible Echo, vol. 12, No. 6, 1897).
Those who accept the Savior, however sincere their conversion, should never be taught to say or feel that they are saved. This is misleading…Those who accept Christ, and in their first confidence say, I am saved, are in danger of trusting to themselves. They lose sight of their own weakness and their constant need of divine strength (Christ’s Object Lessons p. 155).
Not one of us will ever receive the seal of God while our characters have one spot or stain upon them. It is left with us to remedy the defects in our characters, to cleanse the soul temple of every defilement (Testimonies vol. 5, p. 214).
All who receive the seal must be without spot before God--candidates for heaven (Testimonies vol. 5, p. 216).
I saw that the holy Sabbath is, and will be, the separating wall between the true Israel of God and unbelievers; and that the Sabbath is the great question, to unite the hearts of God's dear waiting saints. And if one believed, and kept the Sabbath, and received the blessing attending it, and then gave it up, and broke the holy commandment, they would shut the gates of the Holy City against themselves, as sure as there was a God that rules in heaven above (A word to the Little Flock pp.18-19).
ENTER INTO A JUDGMENT OF WORKS WHICH DETERMINES THEIR SALVATION
"At the time appointed for the judgment.... All who have ever taken upon themselves the name of Christ must pass its searching scrutiny. Both the living and the dead are to be judged "out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works" The Great Controversy, P. 486 (emphasis added). Revelation 20:12 which is the passage quoted has nothing to do with believers, but with the judgment of the wicked dead. Jesus when describing this judgment which would seal the destiny of the wicked in John 5, said believers would never come into that judgment. Read the passage for yourself. EGW’s interpretation is another egregious example of EGW taking another verse totally out of context and ignoring the greater and overwhelming teaching of Jesus and the Apostles that all judgment deserved by believers was born by Jesus on the cross finally and completely.
"Every case had been decided for life or death. While Jesus had been ministering in the sanctuary, the judgment had been going on for the righteous s dead, and then for the righteous living" Early Writings, p. 280 (emphasis added).
Ellen White taught continuously and repeatedly and was understood by those who repeated what she taught, that the Investigative Judgment was in place to determine the final destiny and destination of believers. Their lives and thoughts and sins of omission and commission and failure to keep the commandments and unconfessed sin and works and lack thereof, were all considered and evaluated when determining salvation. The evidence is incontrovertible and overwhelming. Many modern Adventists are so uncomfortable with the actual implications of the Investigative Judgment doctrine, they will do anything and everything to both deny and ignore the clearly anti-Biblical teaching.
speaking personally to many hundreds of faithful Adventists about
this issue, none have ever been willing to discuss the issue in the
light of Biblical truth. They often deny the doctrine outright; they
claim ignorance; they claim we do not understand what is taught; they
misapply and twist the teaching; they say they don’t follow Ellen
White, but just the Bible. Even the greatest theologians and
recognized linguistic scholars in the Church after being assigned by
Church leadership to find a Biblical basis for the doctrine, after 5
years of research together, had to admit, there was no Biblical
"So in the great day of final atonement and investigative judgment the only cases considered are those of the professed people of God" The Great Controversy, p. 480 (emphasis added). Again a reminder that God has , in his sovereign omniscience, promised never again to remember our sins and iniquities as part of the New Covenant unconditional promise. Cf. Jeremiah 31, Hebrews 8 and 10
"…….as the books of record are opened in the judgment, the lives of all who have believed on Jesus come in review before God. Beginning with those who first lived upon the earth....Every name is mentioned, every case closely investigated. Names are accepted, names rejected. When any have sins remaining upon the books of record, unrepented of and unforgiven, their names will be blotted out of the book of life, and the record of their good deeds will be erased from the book of God's remembrance" The Great Controversy, p. 483 (emphasis added). See John 5:24; Romans 8:1
"While good works will not save even one soul, yet it is impossible for even one soul to be saved without good works" Selected Messages, bk. 1, p. 377 (emphasis added). Ellen G. White said in the Advent Review and Sabbath Herald of 10-26-1897 this statement, "...The terms of salvation for every son and daughter of Adam are here outlined. It is plainly stated that the condition of gaining eternal life is obedience to the commandments of God".
and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin. καθαρίζει in the present indicative means that the blood of Jesus continually cleanses us from all sin.
KJV1 Peter 2:24
24 Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed. ἀνήνεγκεν in the aorist indicative means that the bearing of our sins stands as an accomplished fact and is done.
ἰάθητε. This word which speaks of our healing from sin, a quotation from Isaiah 53, is aorist again and in the passive mood, meaning not only does our healing from sin stand as accomplished fact, but we did nothing to earn, deserve, or accomplish this healing because it was effectively done to us and for us without our participation, cooperation, or assistance.
26 For then must he often have suffered since the foundation of the world: but now once in the end of the world hath he appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself. ἅπαξ means a one time event which stands as finished and not to be repeated. There is no further work to finish the atonement in the heavenly sanctuary as EGW claimed. ἀθέτησιν is the word for put away, which carries the idea of nullification. As says Col 2:14
“Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross”. Literally, the legal requirements and indictments of the law which were against us as a debt to God, were nailed to the cross and cancelled. God no longer holds our “IOU” for perfect righteousness, because, as Jesus said on the cross, “It is finished”, or “paid in full.”
Jesus is not reviewing the cases of “all believers from Adam forward…..to determine by His searching scrutiny if they are worthy of eternal life” as Ellen White claimed. He is not doing that because he finished the work of atonement when he died on the cross by cancelling the sin debt once and for all. Ellen White claimed in multiple places in her writings that Jesus did not finish the work of atonement on the cross, but in the heavenly sanctuary. And the Father has promised in the New Covenant that “Your sins and iniquities, I will remember no more.” Does the Son of God listen to the Father and through the “New Covenant in his blood”, keep his part in this unconditional promise? The New Testament never teaches an incomplete atonement on the cross, but a finished work. None of the Church fathers nor any recognized theologian in the history of the Church ever taught such a doctrine. How could Ellen White come up with such heresy calling it truth which God “showed her?” Jude clearly said, “the faith was once and for all time delivered to the saints.” Someone is misrepresenting what God has said in His final and finished revelation.
“For by one offering he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified”. τετελείωκεν Being the perfect tense, this perfection was accomplished and perfected work on the cross with the effect of the act continuing on into the future. This verb “ to perfect or make complete” is related to the same cry Jesus made on the cross when he cried out, “it is finished.”
Ellen White taught clearly, repeatedly and without exception, that the works and words of believers in Jesus, will determine our eternal destiny and destiny. “ Our acts, our words, even our most secret motives, all have their weight in deciding our destiny for weal or woe. Though they may be forgotten by us, they will bear their testimony to justify or condemn. They go before us to the Judgment, The use of every talent will be scrutinized.” EGW Spirit of Prophecy pg. 331
This statement from Spirit of Prophey is clearly the “doctrine of demons”, and is “another Jesus” and “another Gospel”. Believers are to repudiate and expose false doctrine, and “come out from among them”, and as Paul wrote: Eph 5:11-12
11 And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them.
Ellen White did not teach that salvation was a gift of God and not of works. She did not teach salvation by grace alone through faith alone. She taught that the saving work of Christ was unfinished. Anything added to grace, and grace is no longer grace as Paul argues in Galatians. He calls adding to grace alone “Another Gospel.” The Gospel in the New Testament has nothing added, because nothing can be added without corrupting grace. It is only by God’s sovereign grace and the unmerited forgiveness of the cross, and there is nothing else by which salvation comes to man; and that salvation is finished and accomplished at the cross.
Our Position In Christ, The Moment We Believe
Blessed with every spiritual blessing, Regenerated, J
ustified, Sanctified, Adopted, Called, Glorified, Adopted into God’s family, Sonship, Forgiven, Heirs of God, Eternal life, Accepted in the Beloved, Loved of God, Washed of Sin, Sins forgotten forever, Spirit Baptized, In Christ, Sealed by the Spirit, New Creation, Son of God, Freed from the law of sin and death, Heirs of God, Joint heirs of Jesus Christ, Seated with Christ in heavenly places, Access to God, Perfect forever, Never to perish, Inheritance reserved in Heaven, Redeemed, Reconciled to God, Declared righteous, Justified before God, Never to come into judgment, Dead to sin, Freed from the law, Alive unto God, Temple of the Holy Spirit, God’s workmanship, Under the Blood, Redeemed, Saved by Grace, Sins atoned for , No condemnation, Crucified with Christ, Chosen in Christ, Regenerated by the Spirit, Born from above, Abraham’s seed, Heavenly citizenship, No longer an alien from God, No longer a stranger from the promises, Never to face death, Never ever perish, Priest of God, Kept by God, Blameless, Faultless in God’s sight, unfading inheritance, Saved by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone.
Ellen G. White teaches over one thousand times in her writings that all believers are on PROBATION. She says all believers are “undergoing the searching scrutiny of God’s investigative judgment…..to determine if they are worthy of eternal life.”
Ellen G. White teaches that “our acts, our words, even our most secret motives, all have their weight in deciding our destiny for weal or woe. Though they may be forgotten by us, they will bear their testimony to justify or condem.” EGW Spirit of Prophey pg. 331Whose word can be trusted? Is it God’s “sure word of Prophecy”, or the unsure word of the false prophet, EllenG.White? www.rethinkingadventism.com