The SECC stands for something

By Educate Truth Staff

Doug Batchelor preached a sermon in February about women pastors. The Southeastern California Conference released this statement in response to Batchelor’s sermon.

Along with the statement a document was released, accusing Batchelor of the following:

1. A misuse and distortion of Scripture in a variety of ways
2. Not using the best Adventist scholarship
3. Not speaking for the Church
4. Not representing the position or practice of the Seventh-day Adventist Church.

Because of these, the SECC said the following should take place:

1. Church leadership needs to hold them accountable.
2. Official church entities need to go on record disavowing the distorted content of such presentations.
3. Media outlets that are controlled by the church and carry such presentations need to recruit credible voices to offer appropriate, biblically sound responses that show the church’s true position.

It’s amazing the SECC is taking such a strong and public stand for this issue, yet has remained silent about La Sierra promotion of the theory of evolution as the truth. How can the SECC decide to take such sudden and dramatic action over this particular issue, but say absolutely nothing regarding La Sierra, despite it being an entire year since the controversy became public?

How hypocritical can an organization get? Why doesn’t the SECC also demand such action from the church against LSU professors and administrators who are actually attacking fundamental SDA doctrine? Why not demand that the Church leadership hold them accountable as well? Is this not a complete double standard for the SECC?

Share on Facebook0Pin on Pinterest0Share on LinkedIn0Tweet about this on TwitterDigg thisShare on Google+0Share on Tumblr0Share on StumbleUpon0Share on Reddit0Print this pageEmail this to someone

80 thoughts on “The SECC stands for something

  1. shameful is right! i’m appalled by the SECC and what they’re doing. at least we know how quickly they can jump into action when they don’t like someone or something. here we thought they weren’t saying anything about LSU because it just took them a long time to do things. NOPE.




    0
    View Comment
  2. It reminds me of something that happened a while back in a popular SDA magazine. (I won’t name it, to be nice.) Many newsworthy and prophetically significant events in the religious and political world were going by largely unnoticed by this particular magazine at the time. But, then the pope attended a big conference where he denounced … wait for it … birth control. The horror! Suddenly there was a little featurette about how the pope was abusing his power and control, in pure antichrist fashion! You can bring down nations, trample religious liberties, deceive the people, turn a blind eye towards persecution by your followers … we can take it. But breathe a word against birth control, and we will knock you down!

    Sorry, just a little stab at humor. But there was a point in that. Sometimes it seems we have our priorities all switched around.




    0
    View Comment
  3. Glad to see Doug Batchelor is tactfully espousing the ideas that our church has clearly followed from the beginning, saying “I believe it is easier to support the truth – that God has designed only men should be ordained as pastors and elders from the New Testament, than to support the Sabbath.” After all, the Bible does say:

    women should remain silent in the churches. They are not allowed to speak, but must be in submission, as the Law says. If they want to inquire about something, they should ask their own husbands at home; for it is disgraceful for a woman to speak in the church. 1 Cor 14:34-35

    The New Testament clearly teaches that Doug Batchelor is upholding the principles that Ellen White advocated so strongly as the best minister our church has ever known.




    0
    View Comment
  4. On May 29, Spectrum reported on a web site attacking La Sierra University for employing faculty members who teach naturalistic evolution. Today, three months after the story broke, we now know that the website, “Educate Truth” originally created anonymously, is owned and operated by Shane Hilde, a high school English teacher, who attended both LSU and Weimar and who lives near Loma Linda.

    Educate Truth is an agglomeration of news bits, opinion pieces, and leaked personal correspondence. It also features a petition entitled “Petition to Our Seventh-day Adventist Church Leadership.” The petition originally addressed Randal Wisbey (President of La Sierra University), Ricardo Graham (President of the Pacific Union Conference), Don Schneider (President of the North American Division), and Jan Paulsen (President of the General Conference). A clause has now been added as a side bar on the text of the petition stating:

    ““While the petition is general in its language, it will be used specifically to address La Sierra University. It will be presented to the Board of Trustees on November 11, 2009. It is our goal to reach 10,000 signatures by this date.””

    As of the writing of this article, there were 3,939 signatures, many of them “anonymous,” and some of them apparently faked (Darth Vader was among the signatures listed).

    Clearly, Shane Hilde and those allied with the Educate Truth website intend to stop at nothing short of forcing the firing of La Sierra University faculty members. This despite the efforts of President Jan Paulsen to put out the embers of controversy with an article reiterating the church’s stance on the issue of origins. Undeterred by both union and world leadership caution, Educate Truth has sought to push the issue, funneling old self-supporting and traditionalist fears about church change toward the La Sierra University Biology Department. As has happened in the past – from Glacier View to Southern to Walla Walla – when academics are attacked, the personal becomes all too political.

    The latest episode involves La Sierra student Carlos Cerna. Cerna attempted to insert Young Earth Creationist views in a capstone biology course final paper. When Cerna was told that his paper was inadequate for the objectives of the course, he accused professors of grading him harshly for his views and for challenging prevailing scientific views.

    Cerna exchanged emails with his professors, but did not get the response he wanted. His paper was given a “C” grade, which Cerna felt was reprisal for his Young Earth Creationist views. Cerna then leaked his email correspondence with Gary Bradley and Lee Greer–who co-taught the course–on the Educate Truth site.

    Inside Higher Ed, a prominent news site, wrote about Cerna’s interactions with his professors and about the contents of Educate Truth in an article entitled Creating Controversy. The article included statements from Bradley and Cerna. When Spectrum contacted the reporter requesting comment on how the story was initiated, he demurred, saying only that the information was in the public domain.
    Educate Truth, in turn, jumped on the retelling of the Cerna story alleging that it validates their quest to see Biology Department faculty dismissed.

    Cerna’s professors tell a different story. They note first that the purpose of the paper was to demonstrate students’ understanding of prevailing scientific theories, whether or not students personally accepted those theories. They also note that Cerna was given extra help by having a professor read a first draft of his paper and provide detailed advice, which Cerna refused to follow. Cerna accused Greer of saying that the professor would grade him harder than other students for his creationist views, which Greer says is simply untrue. Cerna never spoke with Greer about the grade afterward though he was invited to do so. After the class ended and Cerna graduated, it came to light that Cerna plagiarized parts of the paper (discovered by someone working with Biology Chair Jim Wilson on TurnItIn.com). If this had been found while Cerna was still a student, he would have received a failing grade.

    While Educate Truth has tried to paint Cerna as a martyr in a fight against Creationism, using the student’s experience as a call to arms against the university, in reality, Cerna represents the dishonest lengths to which this small, vocal group will go to in order to get back at their former professors.

    The episode reveals the willingness of these critics of La Sierra University to misrepresent facts, to publicly defame school employees, to disregard copyrights (in the case of syllabi publicized online) and to violate personal privacy by leaking personal correspondence on the Internet. Such tactics provide a seemingly shaky foundation for a campaign to see professors dismissed.

    What’s at Stake
    Despite its questionable approaches, the Educate Truth crusade has had an impact. Since the debacle began, Adventist college administrators and science faculties have gone quiet, refusing to enter the discussion publicly, although many privately find the tactics and arguments against La Sierra University troubling. Many church administrators, likewise have indicated their unwillingness to become entangled in the assault. Significantly, two church leaders have publicly addressed the brouhaha, both Pacific Union Conference President Ricardo Graham and Jan Paulsen have sought a more thoughtful discourse on the issues at stake.

    The assault against La Sierra University has created an atmosphere of suspicion on campus, reminiscent of earlier attacks on Adventist faculty from PUC to Southern to Andrews to Walla Walla over the decades.

    Failure to directly confront Educate Truth’s tactics could have broad consequences. There is a great deal at stake. If those affiliated with Educate Truth are able to influence La Sierra’s board of trustees in forcing the resignation of professors, it would radically impact the school, Adventist higher education, and the church as a whole.

    The removal of LSU biology professors would negatively impact the integrity of La Sierra’s science and pre-med program. A department which currently provides students with a rigorous and thorough exploration of cutting-edge information and technology would be curtailed by the threat of interference from individuals who are not actually confronting the root issues of scientific thinking in the context of faith. The best place for literal Young Earth Creationism’s arguments would be in the laboratory–conducting experiments and presenting scholarly papers, not trying to silence the Adventists who are actually engaged in the professional quest to unite faith and science.

    Caving to Educate Truth’s bully tactics would also stymie the pursuit of knowledge and truth, a principle that Adventist pioneers championed from the church’s foundation. Instead, academics would be constrained by statements drafted in committee meetings, and the pursuit of truth, wherever it leads, would lose out. Adventist higher education will suffer a serious blow on the day that consensus statements supplant the search for truth. It is no small matter that many involved in the crusade received training in self-supporting institutions or have a history of preferring graduates of such schools for church employ.

    The church as a whole would be impacted by such a move. Future generations of Adventist youth will be presented either with a church that embraces honest inquiry, intellectual curiosity and academic integrity, or with a church that values uniformity and loyalty to a set of static creeds.

    Former La Sierra University president Larry Geraty wrote on the need for academic excellence and truth-telling in the December 2002 – December 2003 issue of the Journal of Adventist Education. In an article entitled “Academic Excellence, an Adventist Priority,” Geraty writes,

    Academic excellence is a response to God’s call to tell the truth. Christians are called to be responsive to a reality they did not make—to something that is Other. Loving our neighbors as ourselves means showing respect by refusing to manipulate or deceive them. Academic excellence is an outgrowth of the Christian commitment to telling the truth. It means refusing to allow the sloth that so easily besets us to keep us from taking seriously the reality of what we study. It means honoring those with whom we communicate by being clear, responsible and honest. Christian scholars worship a God of truth, so they cannot indulge in any kind of scholarly mediocrity that sacrifices truth to expediency.
    “”
    The health of Adventist higher education, indeed the future of the mind of the church, depends in large part upon how church leadership responds. Will they stand resolutely against the discomforting political nuance of the few loud voices clamoring, “Educate Truth!” (whatever that means), or will they uphold the scholarly Adventist tradition of intellectual honesty within the context of church faithfulness?




    0
    View Comment
  5. This is absurd and unbelievable. The SECC has the guts to respond to Doug Batechlor’s message because it robbed them the wrong way but for over twenty years or so, LSU professors have promoted and taught evolution as a fact at LSU, but that conference’s leadership has been silent on this issue. The people who need to be sanctioned are the evolutionist at LSU who are leading impressionable young men and women astray, and not Pastor Doug, who is standing for the truth. Shane, we should all rise to Doug Batchelor’s defense, and I pray the LORD will strengthen him and give him the courage to stand for the truth like Elijah, Joshua, Daniel, and CHRIST did.




    0
    View Comment
  6. This shoots a torpedo into my theory that “the leadership just wants to tamp down controversy.” Clearly, they are NOT afraid of controversy and confrontation in the cause of something they really care about. The liberal leadership of the Southeastern California Conference really cares about women’s ordination. They do not really care about Darwinism being taught as truth at LaSierra.

    I had a suspicion, now confirmed, that LaSierra’s Darwinism project is supported by a significant and powerful faction in the Pacific Union and its constituent conferences. Obviously, some person or persons unknown prevented the same type of strong statement issued against Doug Batchelor being issued to address the situation at LaSierra.

    Personally, I am ambivalent on the women’s ordination issue. I am friends with Pastor Elizabeth Talbot, who was at Glendale, then at Alhambra, and now is working on her doctorate and doing radio with Mike Tucker at the Voice of Prophecy. I attended her “commissioning” service a few years ago at Alhambra. I have heard many of her sermons, and I can attest that she is a better preacher than 80% of the male pastors I’ve heard (and that despite a significant accent).

    Despite this personal experience, I’m being driven into the anti-ordination camp, mainly because the people that are so militantly pro-ordination are the same crowd that essentially denies the prophetic authority of Ellen White and enthusiastically promotes Darwinism within the SDA church.

    There is no point in denying that the two issues are connected. In his rationale for male headship at home and in church, Paul relies upon a literal understanding of the creation story: “A woman should learn in quietness and full submission. I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man; she must be silent. For Adam was formed first, then Eve. And Adam was not the one deceived; it was the woman who was deceived and became a sinner.” 1 Timothy 2:11-14.

    Those who are so passionate about women’s ordination would just as soon be rid of the literal creation story. If Paul’s rationale for male headship is wrong, if it is an erroneous literal reading of something intended to be “mythopoetic,” then Paul is wrong about male headship. It is that simple. That being the case, does anyone really believe that the same people who would publicly rebuke Doug Batchelor for opposing women’s ordination would also publicly rebuke the teaching of Darwinism? The answer to that question is becoming all too clear.




    0
    View Comment
  7. The controversy at La Sierra over evolution is indeed similar to former controversies at PUC (where I was a student when this was happening), Southern, Walla Walla, and elsewhere. It is a simple question of whether school administrators and professors hold faithfully to the Bible and its amplification in the Spirit of Prophecy, or whether they will live a lie by teaching and tolerating something else.

    I am amazed that certain ones interpret the decisive support by church leaders for our Fundamental Beliefs as an effort to “quiet the controversy.” An effort to quiet the controversy would be to simply admonish everyone to “show love” despite our differences, and to assure those in all camps that the church has “room” for everyone. So far, no church administrator has said such a thing. The fact that they have upheld our Bible-based, Spirit of Prophecy-affirmed belief as a church in a literal six-day creation, builds a basis for any future action which might take place to hold teachers and school administrators accountable.

    Those calling for such action are not “bullies,” unless one wishes to apply such a label to Moses, Elijah, Josiah, Ezra, Nehemiah, or other leaders in sacred history who were compelled to take severe action against spiritual offenders. This is the kind of leadership the church desperately seeks today. Not compromisers or deluded “bridge-builders” seeking to find room in the church for the deniers of our faith. The Darwinian view of natural origins is simply out of place in any educational center which holds to the Bible-based teachings of Christianity–not to mention the end-time message God has given to the Seventh-day Adventist Church.

    God bless!

    Pastor Kevin Paulson




    0
    View Comment
  8. Note that I’m not speaking against women’s ordination here. I see no reason for women not to be ordained for jobs they are already doing and clearly qualified to do within the SDA Church. After all, what does ordination mean anyway? – that the Church recognizes the clear calling of God in an individual’s life and service in a particular capacity. I could be wrong here. But, as far as I can clearly tell at this point in time, that’s all it means…

    However, I am speaking against the clear double standard of the SECC in attacking someone with an opposing opinion on this particular non-fundamental issue while saying absolutely nothing when many at LSU attack some of the most foundational pillars of the Adventist faith…

    Sean Pitman
    http://www.DetectingDesign.com




    0
    View Comment
  9. One “might have argued” in the past that the SECC did not know how to inform its own constituency in areas where they believed that SDA beliefs were being undermined in the case of LSU.

    But in the example with the case of Amazing Facts – the SECC has shown that it does know the steps necessary to effectively bring issues to light even in cases that do NOT violate any of our voted Fundamental Beliefs.

    In John 9:41
    Christ said “IF you were blind you would not have sin – but you say that you see – so your sin remains”

    The SECC claims it knows exactly how to highlight a challenge to doctrine that it consideres to be important. So their silence in the case of what Ellen White calls the “worst form of infidelity” 3SG 90-91 is deafening.

    “If God abhors one sin above another, of which His people are guilty, it is doing nothing in case of an emergency. Indifference and neutrality in a religious crisis is regarded of God as a grievous crime, and equal to the very worst type of hostility against God” (3T 281).

    in Christ,

    Bob




    0
    View Comment
  10. Unfortunately I do not think that Doug Batchelor’s sermon does justice to the cause he espouses. This is one reason why those who oppose his view jumped so vigorously on his presentation.

    Though his sermon is titled “…A Biblical Perspective.” He lost me right in the first minutes of message. Example:

    “she instead of listening to the clear instructions she had received from the Lord and from her husband not to take from that forbidden tree,…

    A new freedom, new power, was being offered to her by
    the devil; he said, “Don’t listen to what God said. Don’t listen to what your husband said. They’re hiding something from you…

    Then she brings it to her husband and offers it to him and man now [defers] to his wife; instead of leading, he submits. And he takes her advice and all the problems that you see in the world today, both in our relationships and in the world, spring from this interruption of God’s design for the relationship between God and man and woman…

    Sin came into our world as a result of man neglecting and women disregarding the husband’s leadership role.”

    No where do I read in the Bible (or the Spirit of Prophecy)that:
    1. Adam gave clear instructions to Eve not to partake of the tree.
    2. The Serpent said, ‘Don’t listen to what your husband said.’
    3. Adams sin had to do with abdicating his leadership role.
    4. All the problems in the world result from the violation of this
    leadership role defined before the fall.
    5. Sin came into the world because of the violation of man’s leadership
    role.

    In his zeal to substantiate the post-fall ‘headship principle’ (A very real Biblical principle I agree with) he does an injustice to the Bible and the Spirit of Prophecy (in his own words he, ‘overshoots the mark’).
    Nowhere does it say that the warnings given to Eve (that were also no doubt given to Adam as well) were not only conveyed by divine agencies – but also by her husband in a leadership capacity. Nowhere does it indicate that Eve’s sin had to do with disobeying her husband. Nowhere is it indicated that the fall of man was due to a violation of Adam’s leadership role.

    Bro. Batchelor totally ignores the references to a thorough pre-fall equality that Ellen White speaks of:

    “Eve was created from a rib taken from the side of Adam, signifying that she was not to control him as the head, nor to be trampled under his feet as an inferior, but to stand by his side as an equal,…” PP 46

    “In the creation God had made her the equal of Adam. Had they remained obedient to God–in harmony with His great law of love–they would ever have been in harmony with each other; but sin had brought discord, and now their union could be maintained and harmony preserved only by submission on the part of the one or the other.” PP 58

    It is no coincidence that Doug neglects to mention these statements.

    While it is of course extremely noteworthy that the Southeastern Conference has called for discipline and accountability in Doug Batchelor’s case(with the same principles that educate truth is calling for in the LSU case) – the two cases are somewhat different.

    As already mentioned, womens ordination is not part of the fundamental beliefs. Amazing facts is a supporting ministry of the church not an actual financial/political entity of the church. Does Batchelor receive a pay check for pastoring the central Sacramento church (I heard he did does not)? Batchelors sermon was boldly proclaimed in the public arena. The LSU professors comments were not intended to be public – hence they can always spin what they said and lie about their detractors.

    Educate truth should try to avoid the appearance of hypocrisy in this case. Batchelor is plainly stating that he opposes the decision of the church in allowing women to be ‘commissioned.’ Educate truth has strongly defended the importance of employees supporting the decisions of the church (right or wrong). Just because Doug Batchelor may not receive a pay check from the church, does not mean that (as a major representative of the church) he does not have a responsibility to honor its decisions. If this is not a fundamental belief then why would a faithful member feel compelled to oppose the church authority in public?

    It is clear from Doug’s presentation that he does believe this issue should be a fundamental belief – and that it is at the root of sin coming into the world. Wouldn’t it be more appropriate to use other means for this issue to be further examined or revised by the world body than to oppose the church’s current decision in public – and before unbelievers?




    0
    View Comment
  11. @Victor Marshall:

    It is clear from Doug’s presentation that he does believe this issue should be a fundamental belief – and that it is at the root of sin coming into the world. Wouldn’t it be more appropriate to use other means for this issue to be further examined or revised by the world body than to oppose the church’s current decision in public – and before unbelievers?

    Educate Truth is not going to get sidetracked by every hot potato issue in the SDA Church. EdTruth has one simple goal – to increase transparency regarding the proselytizing for theistic evolution at LSU. That’s it. Batchelor may be right or wrong in his opinions and actions. The resolution of women’s ordination, while no doubt a very important issue within the Church today, is not the purpose of EdTruth. The purpose and focus of EdTruth is admittedly very narrow – without apology.

    The only reason the SECC document is being brought up for discussion in this forum is to point out the dramatic inconsistency in SECC’s actions. It seems like the SECC is well able to address certain issues very rapidly and decidedly. What kind of issue is able to illicit such a dramatic response from the SECC? An attack on a fundamental pillar of faith for the SDA Church at large?

    Evidently the SECC does not think it very important to stand up for foundational pillars of the SDA Faith when they are systematically undermined inside its own house – even though it is clearly capable of standing up, very rapidly and very strongly, for those beliefs it evidently does consider to be fundamentally important to defend.

    At least its good to know what the SECC does and does not consider to be important beliefs, worthy of vigorous defense, within the SDA Church…

    Sean Pitman
    http://www.DetectingDesign.com




    0
    View Comment
  12. Michael, I agree with your statement defending Pastor Doug’s sermon. I have personally emailed him and stated so. I urge all others who agree to do the same. President Pedersen is being called to discipline Doug! What a crock! Pedersen, who stated to me he sees NO PROBLEM with SDA pastors endorsing “gay marriage” is going to “discipline” someone who preaches straight from the bible, week after week?! As someone else has stated, “The inmates are running the asylum!”




    0
    View Comment
  13. Sean, Doug Batchelor’s sermon went viral all over the internet. And it is Biblically unsound. He is pretty much an Adventist icon. A public statement had to be made under those circumstances. The issue at La Sierra is important, but compared to the Batchelor sermon, it’s off in an Adventist corner. (I’m not saying it isn’t important, but that it is not all over the internet. Hopefully, it can be dealt with in-house, eliminating airing dirty laundry any more than we have to in full view of non-believers.)

    I’m also frustrated that the La Sierra issue hasn’t been resolved yet, but I’ve learned from experience that God is working even when we are frustrated. I’m not able to keep up with all that is going on here, but I wonder why everyone’s in attack mode all the time? Isn’t it better not to alienate when trying to resolve issues? There’s so much sarcasm toward SECC. Is that necessary or expedient?




    0
    View Comment
  14. @Sean Pitman, M.D.:

    Obviously its much easier for SECC to call for the accountability of an independent minister in another conference – than a large university tied economically and politically directly to SECC (with the administration, whole departments, multiple professors, constituency involved etc.).
    Nonetheless, the gravity of what has been happening at LSU should obviously warrant a response from SECC leadership. The silence is defining.

    One side note – it is interesting that in 1995 the constituency of SECC voted in favor of LSU’s decision to ordain women in opposition to the world church’s decision at Utrecht. One of the women ordained was Madelynn Jones-Haldeman a major proponent of ‘Progressive Adventism.’ This is part of her definition of Progressive Adventism:

    “Depending on the interest and concerns of the individual member, progressive Adventism espouses open dialogue in a free press, academic freedom for its theologians and scientists,… and an expectation that change in religious belief and practice may come if that is where the evidence persuasive to the individual believer leads.”

    If a majority of those in SECC (leaders included) have embraced this progressive paradigm, then no wonder they are not concerned about evolution at LSU.




    0
    View Comment
  15. I hate to show my ignorance–but would someome please tell me what SECC stands for. What is it’s full name? Where is it located and what is its mission?




    0
    View Comment
  16. Lydian, SECC usually stands for the Southeast California Conference–where La Sierra University is and where the “leaders” have allowed these problems to fester for many years.




    0
    View Comment
  17. Bob Ryan has got it right on his 4-13 comment about 3T281. The SECC is the CLASSIC example of this, although many other examples exist. Sam Pipim eloquently explains this concept in his books. He also uses the term, “administrative ostrichism” to show how leaders avoid (keep their head in the sand) so they do not have to or even want to deal with problems such as we are discussing. Ricardo Graham, Don Schneider, and Jim Pedersen are classic examples of these pseudoleaders!




    0
    View Comment
  18. The SECC Executive Committee is a major part of the problems we are discussing here,and they want to censure Doug Batchelor for his sermon? What a bunch of hypocrites! They let “evolution as fact” go on at LSU but when Doug preaches a sermon from biblical evidence, they protest. Who are the members of this committee? Does anyone have a list? I’d like to see it!




    0
    View Comment
  19. Yeh, Pastor Doug has to be “held accountable” while LSU, the Pacific Union Conference, and the SECC have NO ACCOUNTABILITY regarding the issues discussed here.




    0
    View Comment
  20. So the SECC (- offices located about 25 yards off the campus of LSU -) wants to reach out to the NCC – to tell them what to do about “a sermon” from one of their pastors (Doug Batchelor) – while the SECC is unnable to “reach out” to LSU with any kind of solution or recommendation?

    Come to think of it — all the issues listed at LSU are likely being created by SECC church members. Hmm maybe the SECC could reach out to the SECC for that one.

    Maybe…




    0
    View Comment
  21. I’d also like to see a list of the SECC committee. Since they are from SoCal I don’t wonder their “liberal” outlook. I know first hand how liberal a good share of folks from that region can be.

    On the other hand, as Dean of Girls at Newberry Park Academy (many, many years ago!) for a year, one of the finest Christian brother and sister (she was one of my dorm girls and her brother was in the boy’s dorm) I’ve ever known came from that area. I knew her later in Takoma Park, Md. and she was still a wonderful Adventist woman–and a real inspiration to every one who knew her. She went through some very bitter experiences there but always carried herself with amazing Christian dignity.

    Yes, “some good CAN come out of “Nazareth”! and I’m sure there are still some dedicated folks in that area who are absolutely sick over how things are going at LSU as well as in that area in general.




    0
    View Comment
  22. Lydian, SECC as Dr. Stone noted, stands for Southeastern California Conference of SDA, the body that has administrative and oversight responsibilities for SDA churches in southeastern California, which includes the Riverside and San Bernandino counties. Dr. Fritz Guy, a former president of LSU, who has been cited on this forum many times regarding fundamental belief # 6, is a pastor under the SECC, and in fact in the late eighties he was an associate Pastor at the Loma Linda University SDA church. The administrative offices of SECC is at Riverside, CA. a few miles from the LSU campus.

    At the GC session in Utrecht, Netherlands in 1995, the NAD petitioned the session to permit them to ordain women into the pastoral ministry, and the request was voted down. After the GC session, the SECC voted to ordain women into ministry in opposition to the decision of the world church, and sadly neither the GC leadership under Elder Folkenberg nor the NAD leadership under Elder Mclure, I don’t know if I got his name right, did nothing publicly about this rebellion, hence the SECC was emboldened and therefore Hyveth Williams was posted to the Campus Hill at the Loma Linda campus as a senior pastor by the SECC for many years.

    Now the SECC is requesting that Doug Batchelor be censured for preaching on a subject that robs them the wrong way, but that conference has been in rebellion agianst the world church since late 1995, and they have not been censured. What has the SECC done about the apostasy at LSU for the past 20 years or so?. Does it not smell like hypocrisy? They want to gag people like Doug Batchelor and if they succeed in this effort who will be next, perhaps David Asscherik whose email to the GC president brought this issue to the forefront, or perhaps Sam Pipim who speaks frequently against issues in the church that the leadership prefers to shove under the rug. I believe those of us who have spoken eloquently against this rebellion at LSU regarding evolution should rise to the defense of pastor Doug and anyone else who is not afraid to call sin by it’s rightful name, and we must be prepared to meet the other challenges ahead of us. The next issue coming is HOMOSEXUALITY and GAY MARRIAGE, watch out.




    0
    View Comment
  23. Who do we contact to protest this outrageous action by SECC against pastor Doug? I simply cannot believe that the church doesn’t rise up with one accord against this sort of thing! Truly we ‘HAVE met the enemy and he is the folks from SECC and on up the chain of command clear to the GC (and many of the laity as well). I cannot help but believe that we really ARE entering the “shaking time” Ellen White said we would.

    The really “bright side” of all of this is that we really ARE “NEARING HOME!” I don’t know what God is going to do about all of this but HE DOES and, in his own good time he will arise and “shake the earth!” Courage, everyone, our God has never lost a battle and he is not about to lose this one!




    0
    View Comment
  24. I just want to make the point that I agree that SECC should be addressing this issue. I think that internet forums cause people to behave toward others in un-Christlike ways.

    Also, those who agree with Doug Batchelor’s sermon message, have you either read the entire thing or listened to it all? And have you checked the facts?

    I love Pastor Batchelor and appreciate his ministry. But there are a lot of things in this particular sermon that are not Biblical. Sometimes when we are on one side of an issue, we make assumptions before checking the facts. I don’t think it’s fair to Doug Batchelor not to point out serious errors, even if you agree with the core issue. I would not want to remain uncorrected if I made the statement that a fact was in the Bible if it wasn’t there. It’s the right thing to do.

    Let’s not turn into a mob here. Check facts first, pray, only act after God gives the all clear (aka-listen for the still small voice.) How many people on this forum pray before clicking submit? And wait for an answer? I mean this question sincerely.




    0
    View Comment
  25. Yes, Christiane, I was present when Doug gave that sermon, and I’ve listened to it again. Christ was not hesitant to point out errors, even in the established “church” and we shouldn’t be either. If anything, most SDA’s are way too “tolerant” of errors, heresy, and blasphemy within our ranks!




    0
    View Comment
  26. Michael, You’re 100% correct in the SECC’s attempt to silence the few pastors who still preach God’s Truth. While the “executives” waste away our tithe money, supporting “evolution as fact” they attack anyone who actually stands firmly on biblical truth.




    0
    View Comment
  27. Shane, Can you get a list of the Executive Committee members? Some of us want to know who these characters are. Or, are they going to “closet” themselves?!




    0
    View Comment
  28. Michael, You’re right about the “gay marriage” issue. This one is festering profusely within our ranks, up to the top levels. Jim Pedersen is not the only problem. I’ve heard from a pastor in the SCC that Caviness in “on board” for “gay marriage” too.




    0
    View Comment
  29. BTW, you’ll notice virtually all the problems we see in our church stem from SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA. The great “Babylon” of the SDA Church.




    0
    View Comment
  30. Lydian, You’re contacting will not work. For example, I’ve “contacted” Ricardo Graham numerous times, by email and once in person. You won’t get anywhere with guys like him. Pure avoidance!




    0
    View Comment
  31. Christiane, The “still small voice” I hear says we better get off of our rear-ends and start protecting our SDA Church and its institutions.




    0
    View Comment
  32. Lydian, As you can plainly see, LSU and the SECC are “twin” institutions “joined at the hip” to rot out our SDA Church out from within.




    0
    View Comment
  33. Christiane, The “still small voice” I hear says we better get off of our rear-ends and start protecting our SDA Church and its institutions.  

    Ron, I was talking about how we behave while we do the right thing. I was simply suggesting we pause before publishing something that could do damage to the cause of God. Also, to pause and be sure what our part should be. I mean, how long should we wait to know what the right thing to do is? How can we be so sure of ourselves?

    This is not like a private conversation in a room somewhere. This forum is available for all to see.




    0
    View Comment
  34. Christiane, As I have stated previously, I always take my criticisms to the person PRIVATELY first. When they refuse to listen or respond, then, when the opportunity provides, I take it public, as I’ve done here. You see others wondering WHAT can be done by individuals. Well, individually, not much–you’ll be totally ignored. But, collectively, I believe we can do something. Time will tell!




    0
    View Comment
  35. Ron, I’m a believer in a 6-day creation week in the relatively recent past–but frankly you scare me! I can understand why Ricardo Graham would be reluctant to contact you.




    0
    View Comment
  36. BTW, I have invited those I’ve criticized to come online and either try to denounce what I’ve stated or provide their view. So far–zero! Why? They know what I’ve said is true, and they have no answer or don’t want to provide any answers.




    0
    View Comment
  37. No need to be scared Eddie. Well, unless you’re one of those guys who we’re criticizing. Then, maybe you SHOULD be afraid, of being exposed.




    0
    View Comment
  38. Ron, I’m a believer in a 6-day creation week in the relatively recent past–but frankly you scare me! I can understand why Ricardo Graham would be reluctant to contact you.  

    Eddie,
    I concur.

    Ron,
    Your tone and spirit are disturbing – and I work with men who most people would consider to be very frightening. The ones who are converted rarely exhibit this kind of consistently virulent behavior. People can rarely tolerate this level of intensity for long. So often what passes for ‘righteous indignation’ is really not righteous. I myself am not immune from this malady.

    Also, I thought Shane had previously admonished Bob once before for posting repeatedly successive posts. Its not necessary to get your point across.




    0
    View Comment
  39. @Ron Stone M.D.:

    Christiane, The “still small voice” I hear says we better get off of our rear-ends and start protecting our SDA Church and its institutions.

    That is correct.

    I think the opening article in the linke below from Educate Truth should be “required reading” for all Adventists that want to know just exactly what is going on at LSU that results in what Ellen White calls in 3SG 90-91 “the worst kind of infidelity”.

    http://www.educatetruth.com/featured/creationist-students-find-little-support-from-lsu/comment-page-2/#comment-11748




    0
    View Comment
  40. 3SG 90-91 identifies the problem of theistic evolutionism as “the worst kind of infidelity”.

    The Bible exposes evolutionism as “dead wrong” in the way that Ex 20:8-11 summarizes the chronological sequence of Gen 1-2:3.

    Professor Bradley openly publishes the fact that LSU is engaged in that very deed – evangelizing for evolutionism!

    LSU’s own students, prior faculty, parents of students, course documentation (etc etc) confirm that the problem is just as real as the evidence suggests.

    So then what is the less-than-insightful response from evolutionism’s devotees to evolutionist dogma??

    @Eric:
    On May 29, Spectrum reported on a web site attacking La Sierra University for employing faculty members who teach naturalistic evolution. Today, three months after the story broke, we now know that the website, “Educate Truth” originally created anonymously, is owned and operated by Shane Hilde, a high school English teacher,

    Now that part was just riveting wouldn’t you say??

    Eric continues –
    (Shane) who attended both LSU and Weimar and who lives near Loma Linda.

    Clearly, Shane Hilde and those allied with the Educate Truth website intend to stop at nothing short of forcing the firing of La Sierra University faculty members. This despite the efforts of President Jan Paulsen to put out the embers of controversy with an article reiterating the church’s stance on the issue of origins. Undeterred by both union and world leadership caution, Educate Truth has sought to push the issue, funneling old self-supporting and traditionalist fears about church change toward the La Sierra University Biology Department. As has happened in the past – from Glacier View to Southern to Walla Walla – when academics are attacked, the personal becomes all too political.

    Where is the “substance” in that article??

    Is the argument “evolutionism should be taught in our schools because it is not nice to fire evolutionists?”

    Is that the level of “content” that the author is offering??

    Or are we “supposed to imagine” that Jan Paulsen’s comment that our schools need to be creationist should be a sign for anyone awakened by the problem at LSU to “go back to sleep and ignore the problem — it will surely go away now that Paulsen has suggested that LSU reconsider”.

    The latest episode involves La Sierra student Carlos Cerna. Cerna attempted to insert Young Earth Creationist views in a capstone biology course final paper. When Cerna was told that his paper was inadequate for the objectives of the course, he accused professors of grading him harshly

    Hint: for actual Seventh-day Adventists a paper on origins would not “insert creationist views” it would be BASED IN creationist views – and then someone could well try to “insert evolutionist fiction” in the middle of it – with an appeal to junk-science combined with some liberal “storytelling” —

    But in a public university – that would be viewed as “inserting young earth creationism into an otherwise all-for-atheist-doctrine evolutionist course”.

    The author of the article has apparently flipped over to the public university “context” right in the middle of an article supposedly intended for Seventh-day ADventists about a Seventh-day Adventist university!

    Amazing!!

    Cerna exchanged emails with his professors, but did not get the response he wanted. His paper was given a “C” grade, which Cerna felt was reprisal for his Young Earth Creationist views. Cerna then leaked his email correspondence with Gary Bradley and Lee Greer–who co-taught the course–on the Educate Truth site.

    Inside Higher Ed, a prominent news site, wrote about Cerna’s interactions with his professors and about the contents of Educate Truth in an article entitled Creating Controversy. The article included statements from Bradley and Cerna. When Spectrum contacted the reporter requesting comment on how the story was initiated, he demurred, saying only that the information was in the public domain.

    Hold the phone!!

    Is this where the author simply choked when it came time for “factually reporting” Bradley’s –down with the Bible– and –all for evolutionism– public position to the press, and also the Greer-Bradley -evolutionism is all that exists- theme hammered into their coursework! Or is this where “Bradley commented at some point” is found to be the most substantive insight that the author could muster to address the salient point of the discussion?

    How instructive for the unbiased objective reader that Eric simply glosses over details inconvenient to his story.

    As usual – evolutionists can’t help telling the world just how unreliable their methods are – if given enough rope.

    in Christ,

    Bob




    0
    View Comment
  41. I find it interesting that if we are able to undermine the Bible in it’s literal six day creation, why should we not undermine other areas it clearly states in the first few chapters… i.e ordination of women, Sabbath, definition of marriage, etc. So as La Sierra gives it’s unliteral interpretation of the Bible, more and more young people realize that the very pillar of Christianity, God’s word, is subject to modern cultures post-modernistic perspective. The Bible does not interpret itself, but we use our culture to do it. Sounds very similar to how paganism entered Christianity, compromise with culture. Are we going to let ourselves be drawn from Christ too? I read through the article from SECC and, having watched Doug Batchelor’s presentation on women and preaching several times, found there to by quite the misrepresentation and opinion mixed within it. True I do struggle with Ellen White and her role. The rebuking, leading, and ordination/ not ordination, depending on who’s talking, is confusing. However, she was not a proponent of women’s ordination, from what I understand. I doubt it was due to the culture of that time either. From my recollection, there were movements during her time that promoted women ministers, yet she didn’t choose, or claim God was leading, to go with this. Also, she was not one to worry about going against cultural norm, like Christ. Many of the things either of them said were against the cultural norm of that day. EGW-Sabbath, ceasing from using flesh meats. Christ- humility, turning the other cheek, adultery. The big thing I see is the opposition to Elder Batchelor is using the Bible to prove their own perspective.

    In summery, as Christians, as Seventh-Day Adventists, can we not be people of the book. Weren’t we once known for that? Weren’t we once known for going door to door sharing the gospel? What does the Bible say? Forget about the opinion of media, culture, society. Let the weight of evidence guide us. The Lord gave us the Spirit of Prophecy, to turn us back to the Bible because we were not using it as we should. Maybe we should take that as a hint, to dive deeper into God’s Word, prayerfully, as at Pentecost and the early Adventist movement. Please keep Elder Batchelor, the SECC, and the SDA church and its people in your prayers.




    0
    View Comment
  42. A Lawyer’s Take on the SECC Double Standard
    In Atoday’s blog:
    Nathan Schilt says:

    I strongly suspect that your objections to EducateTruth’s calls for accountability in the LSU biology curriculum are pretextual. If they played by your rules, would you then concede that their agenda is legitimate? Of course not. You have made it quite clear in the past that you think laypersons and clerics have no business intruding into the non-religious curriculum at LSU. Or have I misunderstood you? Therefore, it seems to me that the only distinction you can honestly make between the Batchelor situation and the LSU biology curriculum would have to be based on a belief that freedom of expression in the classroom is entitled to greater protection than freedom of expression from the pulpit. I don’t know if that distinction will hold water very well, but at least it states a principle that can be debated rather than a conclusion which definitionally precludes debate.

    http://www.atoday.com/content/secc-executive-committee-affirms-role-women-ministry#comment-7206

    I couldn’t agree more. It is an artificial distinction for “progressives” to suggest that church representatives can and should be censured if they speak against church guidelines from the pulpit, but not if they do so in the classroom… regardless of the issue under consideration. This is a clear non sequitur. The conclusion simply doesn’t follow the starting premise.

    If you’re going to be consistent with regard to complete academic freedom, then it only follows, logically, that the same sort of freedom should be tolerated from the pulpit as well – without official complaint or restraint from any division within the church organization – especially those calling themselves “progressive”.

    Don’t get me wrong now. I’m very much in favor of the idea that the Church, as an organization, definitely needs rules of internal order, government, and discipline – rules that are clearly stated and followed. No organization can long survive without such things. However, at the very least, let’s try for consistency with regard to calls for internal censureship, discipline, and actual government within the SDA Church organization.

    Sean Pitman
    http://www.DetectingDesign.com




    0
    View Comment
  43. @Sean Pitman, M.D.:

    Don’t get me wrong now. I’m very much in favor of the idea that the Church, as an organization, definitely needs rules of internal order, government, and discipline – rules that are clearly stated and followed. No organization can long survive without such things. However, at the very least, let’s try for consistency with regard to calls for internal censureship, discipline, and actual government within the SDA Church organization.

    AToday reported that the North Calif Conf has come out with a statement that in essence says they are not going to hammer one of their own pastors for taking a position that does not violate any one of the 28 Fundamental Beliefs – even though some other more liberal Calif Conf like the SECC and the home of LSU – wishes that it would do so.

    Not that surprising.

    But SECC has introduced a great offer – they seem to be saying that IN THEIR view people in OTHER conferences should be able to complain about their OWN SECC pastors and they (the SECC) would take it serioulsy.

    Steve Daily’s Celebration Center and laughing in the spirit come to mind.

    in Christ,

    Bob




    0
    View Comment
  44. That is a surprise. There certainly should be the same, if not more, zeal in addressing the clearly unbiblical evolutionary teachings in our schools, as displayed here regarding women’s ordination. Something is terribly wrong with this picture. I consider Doug Batchelor to be a solid Christian, godly man, who is conscientiously endeavoring to present Bible truth. We need more men–and women–like that in our leadership!




    0
    View Comment
  45. Sandi, I agree with you completely. Doug has a large following not because he is an “icon” or “worshipped” as some have stated, but because he one of the VERY FEW SDA pastors to actually preach God’s Word!

    Ervin Taylor doesn’t like the fact that Doug and Amazing Facts has such a large following or is able to generate money to support its ministry. He has posted an article on AT complaining about such. But it’s because LOTS of people believe in what Pastor Doug says. Where’s Ervs following? A few dozen “protectors” over at AT!

    Doug is invited and has gone worldwide to preach. Taylor has gone absolutely nowhere and will continue to go nowhere except on a website like AT or Spectrum.

    See the difference?

    BTW, are we going to get the names of the SECC Executive Committee members posted here?




    0
    View Comment
  46. As a retired teacher I would have expect my students to be consistent in their arguments. Paul did not want women to speak in church, but he also told slaves to go back and submit to their masters. Perhaps we might do well to consider cultural differences before we make rules that will restrict a calling that God Himself may have given to one of His children who happens to be female. Surely God realised Ellen White was a female? If I follow the reasoning of the sermon I assume Paul would not have been at all pleased about that.

    Remember fellow church members, that for centuries people who claimed the name ‘Christian’ felt no guilt about buying, selling and using slaves. And they quoted Paul to justify an activity that has highly financially beneficial for them.

    Let us throw caution to the winds and read ALL of Paul’s writings. As Adventists we are rightly proud that we take the whole counsel of the Word of God, not bits. Paul also said ‘in Christ’ there is neither male nor female. Could we not add that opinion to see God’s perfect will more fully?

    A further problem I mention is that my ‘Christian’ husband left me with two sons to raise alone. I wonder who Paul would have expected me to talk to when I got home to explain what the preacher had been talking about? The fact is I study my Bible and when you do that long enough you just have to share what you have learned at Jesus’ feet. I cannot keep silent because Jesus is just too wonderful not to boast about. I apologise for being a women but silence when confronted by the amazing fact of salvation is too much to ask, even to keep the brethren happy.

    Still speak about Jesus.

    Janifer




    0
    View Comment
  47. Sean:
    My understanding as well is that the LSU issue has been going on for 7-10 years. Doug Batchelor’s sermon just happened–there seems to be no movement or behind the scenes documentation of working with the Pastor toward a Christian conclusion to this issue. Now suddenly, the SECC is throwing the explosion out there.

    On the other hand, the people working with LSU on Educate Truth have had issues and worked for peaceful and behind the scenes resolution for 7-10 years. The opponents to this issue call for them to sit down again due to the fact that they have not handled it in a Christian matter according to Mat 18 or are bashing the subject/issue and it should have been handled more delicately.

    Now, the contrast seems to be obvious to me. It’s okay if we do it but not if you do it! In fact, that NAD President said in effect you have to remember you cannot just go in with a sledge hammer and crack heads. But this is how they are okay approaching Doug Batchelor. Just depends on who you are?!

    Maybe it is just me though?




    0
    View Comment
  48. You are criticizing SECC for not working “behind the scenes” before publishing their statement? You do understand what “behind the scenes” means, right? It means you didn’t know about it!
    I know several people that were involved in the creation of this statement, and I also know that they personally contacted Doug Batchelor weeks prior to the issuance of this statement to express their disappointment in the tone and scholarship of his sermon. He responded to a couple of them; I will not publicly share what he said, because that exchange was “behind the scenes” and nobody’s business but Batchelor’s and the people he wrote to.
    However, I assure you that the protocol of Matthew 18 was followed, which BTW you have not done concerning this matter.
    Did you ask the SECC Executive Committee whether they addressed Batchelor privately before you publicly aired your accusation that they did not? Talk about total hypocrisy!
    Methinks Job 38:2 applies here.




    0
    View Comment
  49. @Peter:

    You are criticizing SECC for not working “behind the scenes” before publishing their statement? You do understand what “behind the scenes” means, right? It means you didn’t know about it!

    I know several people that were involved in the creation of this statement, and I also know that they personally contacted Doug Batchelor weeks prior to the issuance of this statement to express their disappointment in the tone and scholarship of his sermon. He responded to a couple of them; I will not publicly share what he said, because that exchange was “behind the scenes” and nobody’s business but Batchelor’s and the people he wrote to.

    Correct me if I’m wrong, but it seems to me that you’re supporting the idea that it is fine to go public with concerns about the activities of a church employee as long as effort was made to address the problem “behind the scenes”, but without resolution… Is that correct?

    If so, then you must also be supportive of the efforts of Educate Truth to increase transparency regarding the promotion of theistic evolution as the true story of origins at LSU for decades now – despite many “behind the scenes” efforts to correct this fundamental undermining of foundational pillars of the SDA Church…

    You must also agree then that it does indeed seem rather hypocritical of the SECC to go after Doug Batchelor (a pastor outside of their own conference) so quickly when it has said aboslutely nothing, in any sort of public manner, regarding the proselytizing for theistic evolution by most of the science professors at LSU – right in its own backyard…

    Glad to have your support 😉

    Sean Pitman
    http://www.DetectingDesign.com




    0
    View Comment
  50. “Religion is Culture; Culture is Religion”

    Regarding an article by a friend of mine, Peter Katz, published recently in Spectrum
    http://www.spectrummagazine.org/blog/2010/04/11/new_orientalism_cost_global_adventism

    Hi Peter,

    Interesting article. It seems to me, however, that if one’s religion does not transcend culture, on at least some level, then that religion isn’t very useful as a solid or trustworthy basis for any sort of real hope in a bright literal future for us all that also transcends culture…

    The reason why I’m a Christian, and a Seventh-day Adventist in particular, is that I think, I am really convinced anyway, that my faith isn’t completely devoid of real empirical scientific evidence that is in fact transcendent beyond cultural biases…

    The heavens declare the glory of God;
    the skies proclaim the work of his hands.
    Day after day they pour forth speech;
    night after night they display knowledge.
    There is no speech or language
    where their voice is not heard.
    – Psalms 19:1-3

    Sean Pitman
    http://www.DetectingDesign.com




    0
    View Comment
  51. Paul also said ‘in Christ’ there is neither male nor female.

    In the same statement Paul said there is neither Jew nor Greek and neither slave nor free. Shall we all become Greeks and slaves, since they’re the same thing anyhow? Shall we not worry which gender we marry, since there’s no such thing as “male and female?” There are many ways to “adjust” Paul’s words, and just so many ways of failing to understand them. Perhaps this is why we need men’s analytical skills and logic to help navigate scriptural issues. “Study to shew thyself approved unto God…rightly dividing the word of truth.”

    At LSU, they are willing to twist Paul’s words as well as to chuck whole chapters of Moses as “fiction.” Instead of “rightly dividing the word of truth,” many people cut it off completely and call it fiction, or worse, lies.

    Erik




    0
    View Comment
  52. Peter,
    I have to say. I am glad they did but that is not material to my point that one of the main arguments I see is that people pushing things like this are not loving and are being divisive. They say this in and of itself by these techniques are wrong.

    Now I see them used by the same people and cheered. You don’t see the issue there? If the techniques are okay then, can’t we just argue about substance? I think that is why technique was brought up–substance at this time doesn’t hold too well. . . . At this moment, our church doctrine says God did it in 6 days and they are working for a church school. Academic freedom really only applies to public school issues.




    0
    View Comment
  53. Academic freedom does not apply even in the public schools that today are dominated by the iron fisted domineering rule of atheist-centric evolutionism in all science courses. It is so extreme that they actually rule for legal penalties against those who would dare tell children that a “book exists in the library” about Pandas and People.

    It would be a form of fiction to view the public school arena as truly embracing academic freedom. But “in theory” we would certainly have “expected it” even though in practice there is no such thing.

    in Christ,

    Bob




    0
    View Comment
  54. @Peter:

    You are criticizing SECC for not working “behind the scenes” before publishing their statement?

    No. The critcism of the SECC is that they are “home base” for LSU’s evolutionism. It is their own members that are doing this at LSU. They are located a few dozen yards off the campus of LSU. They are not solving THEIR OWN PROBLEM when it comes to “the worst form of infidelity” 3SG 90-91 – yet they presume to ignore the massive galactic rift in their own eye – to reach out and swat the spec that they think is in the eye of a pastor in another conference entirely??

    How transparent.

    One would have thought they knew when to blush – until they did that.

    And then there is always their sponsoring of the “laughing in the spirit” charismania thing at CC. I wonder if they are open to outside conferences “reaching out to them” on a few of those items.

    in Christ,

    Bob




    0
    View Comment
  55. As a retired teacher I would have expect my students to be consistent in their arguments. Paul did not want women to speak in church, but he also told slaves to go back and submit to their masters. Perhaps we might do well to consider cultural differences before we make rules that will restrict a calling that God Himself may have given to one of His children who happens to be female. Surely God realised Ellen White was a female? If I follow the reasoning of the sermon I assume Paul would not have been at all pleased about that.Remember fellow church members, that for centuries people who claimed the name ‘Christian’ felt no guilt about buying, selling and using slaves. And they quoted Paul to justify an activity that has highly financially beneficial for them.Let us throw caution to the winds and read ALL of Paul’s writings. As Adventists we are rightly proud that we take the whole counsel of the Word of God, not bits. Paul also said ‘in Christ’ there is neither male nor female. Could we not add that opinion to see God’s perfect will more fully?
    A further problem I mention is that my ‘Christian’ husband left me with two sons to raise alone. I wonder who Paul would have expected me to talk to when I got home to explain what the preacher had been talking about? The fact is I study my Bible and when you do that long enough you just have to share what you have learned at Jesus’ feet. I cannot keep silent because Jesus is just too wonderful not to boast about. I apologise for being a women but silence when confronted by the amazing fact of salvation is too much to ask, even to keep the brethren happy.Still speak about Jesus.Janifer  

    Janifer, Thanks for sharing this. Very good points. It’s hard to explain how some of those confusing passages have affected me in the past. I can hardly imagine mistreated American (or other) slaves’ emotional reactions to the passages about slaves.

    I teach Kindergarten Sabbath School and this week we are talking about the woman at the well. What if Jesus had asked her to keep silent and not teach any men?

    Since this discussion started, I’ve wanted to take some of the points in Pastor Batchelor’s sermon and ask the forum members to show me where they are in the Bible, or even SOP. It frightens me to see so many affirming the points were all biblical.

    But what stopped me is Sean’s statement or clarification that the issue at hand for discussion here is really the perceived hypocrisy of SECC in this action–and not the core issue of women in ministry. So I’ve tried not to distract the conversation.

    Also, I appreciate Doug Batchelor and his ministry and I didn’t want to be tearing apart in a public space something he’s presented. I’m praying for him and believe that God always makes everything beautiful in His time.




    0
    View Comment
  56. @Peter:Correct me if I’m wrong, but it seems to me that you’re supporting the idea that it is fine to go public with concerns about the activities of a church employee as long as effort was made to address the problem “behind the scenes”, but without resolution…Is that correct?If so, then you must also be supportive of the efforts of Educate Truth to increase transparency regarding the promotion of theistic evolution as the true story of origins at LSU for decades now – despite many “behind the scenes” efforts to correct this fundamental undermining of foundational pillars of the SDA Church…You must also agree then that it does indeed seem rather hypocritical of the SECC to go after Doug Batchelor (a pastor outside of their own conference) so quickly when it has said aboslutely nothing, in any sort of public manner, regarding the proselytizing for theistic evolution by most of the science professors at LSU – right in its own backyard…Glad to have your support
    Sean Pitman
    http://www.DetectingDesign.com  

    Sean,

    Yes, I certainly support the idea that if one-on-one discussion does not resolve the situation satisfactorily, the person with the complaint should go up the ladder: first to other brethren, then to the church, and if the issue is still unresolved the problem member should be persona non grata to the church. So to that extent I do not criticize EducateTruth for their approach. The hypocrisy I am pointing out is Shannon’s accusation that the SECC did not follow that protocol in dealing with Doug Batchelor, when in fact they did, and that the accusation itself violates the protocol.

    I don’t know what actions persons affiliated with ET took before “going public.” So I won’t accuse anyone of having violated Matthew 18 on that issue; I just don’t know, and it’s really none of my business.

    That being said, I agree that there should be transparency at LSU and every other SDA college; unfortunately, there is just no way to go back in time and observe exactly what the professor(s) said in lecture, so it is difficult for a non-participant to cast judgment. There will always be some uncertainty about what the professor actually said, versus what he/she claims to have said, versus what a student understood, etc. Oh, to have Urim and Thummim! It cannot go beyond the he said/she said fingerpointing, and it isn’t right for people to lose their jobs over fingerpointing. So while transparency is a nice ideal, I don’t see how it could actually happen.

    Since Doug Batchelor’s sermon is recorded and distributed on the internet, it is possible for individuals to view it and judge for themselves. I think the SECC went after Doug Batchelor’s sermon because 1) while a classroom lecture is heard only by the students present, the sermon is viewed by thousands of Adventists and non-Adventists alike; 2) many of Batchelor’s viewers are within SECC territory; and 3) unlike a classroom lecture, we can all be certain of exactly what Batchelor said, even those of us who were not physically present when he said it. There are many who will ignore Batchelor’s sarcastic insults and hear only the conclusion that women should not be ordained as pastors, but I heard the insults and I was offended by them. I’ve heard the arguments for and against women’s ordination, but never have I heard them presented with such disdain for 50% of God’s precious children.

    Every Christian has a responsibility to defend the defenseless, to combat hatred and injustice. So while you may feel that SECC has yet to properly address the issue at LSU, I applaud their action against Batchelor’s sermon.




    0
    View Comment
  57. @Peter:

    That being said, I agree that there should be transparency at LSU and every other SDA college; unfortunately, there is just no way to go back in time and observe exactly what the professor(s) said in lecture, so it is difficult for a non-participant to cast judgment. There will always be some uncertainty about what the professor actually said, versus what he/she claims to have said, versus what a student understood, etc. Oh, to have Urim and Thummim! It cannot go beyond the he said/she said fingerpointing, and it isn’t right for people to lose their jobs over fingerpointing. So while transparency is a nice ideal, I don’t see how it could actually happen.

    Maybe I missed a few posts — but I have yet to see even one example of the LSU president, or an LSU religion department faculty member, or an LSU biology department faculty member, or AToday via Erv Taylor guest speaker at LSU, ever saying “We have not taught that evolution is the right answer for origins. We teach that the literal 7 day creation week less than 10,000 years ago is the right answer for origins – and we are being falsely accused by so-and-so for teaching evolutionism as if it were true, when in fact that is not what we have done”.

    But your post above appears to imagine that this is the kind of debate that is happening here, and that we would need a video or “Urim and Thumim” to solve the debate as to whether LSU actually teaches evolution as the right answer for origins.

    If you look closely at professor Bradley’s own published statements (biology professor currently teaching at LSU) – he tells you exactly what they are doing – and the EducateTruth position is to AGREE with Bradley – that they are DOING what Bradley claims they are DOING and what Bradley publically admits they HAVE BEEN doing for years.

    (Not to mention the coursework also posted here showing that Bradley is 100% correct about what he says they are doing)

    What part of that needs an “Urim and Thumim” to see who is giving the accurate view of what they are actually doing there??

    in Christ,

    Bob




    0
    View Comment
  58. If you look closely at professor Bradley’s own published statements (biology professor currently teaching at LSU) – he tells you exactly what they are doing – and the EducateTruth position is to AGREE with Bradley – that they are DOING what Bradley claims they are DOING and what Bradley publically admits they HAVE BEEN doing for years.(Not to mention the coursework also posted here showing that Bradley is 100% correct about what he says they are doing)

    If we all agree on what is being taught at LSU, then why the call for transparency? On the other hand, if there is still ambiguity on what is being taught, then how can you expect the SECC to censure LSU?

    Here’s what it looks like to outside observers: a student took a course that was honestly described in the catalog, got a grade less than he figured he deserved, and tried to blackmail the professor into changing the grade; when he didn’t get his way, he launched a public smear campaign. I’m not saying that’s what happened, I’m just saying that for those of us who weren’t in the class, it looks pretty shady, and I applaud the SECC for not jumping into bed with the student. The SECC can’t be certain of exactly what happened, so they aren’t condemning the student either (like the scientific community has done).

    If this had been an “A” student who made the complaint, it would have some more validity, but this is a student who got a mediocre grade immediately prior to his accusation. Just how credible do you think the rest of us find that?




    0
    View Comment
  59. Peter,
    That does seem to be the case of one of the situations if you take the extreme of one perspective but there are many, many more. . . . Parents who’s children went to LSU believing in God and came out agnostic. Students who complained because they didn’t like the class material. Students who didn’t complain and just toughed it out. Adults who have talked to faculty and administrators about these issues–it is not just one student as you imply with the SECC that has a beef because of his grade–you grossly exaggerate! However, I’m sure that if it were an A student, there would still be some excuse–“It is just one student, or they were just a complainer trying to control the class.” In then end, the believe presupposes the answer. To illustrated this. I’m sure my current statement will not convince you either.

    In the end, it is not an accusation–it is a fact that the teachers in question are teaching evolution. They are–why are we arguing this. Then Peter–you imply that the Bulletin states this openly. This does not. It in fact dances around the idea that science is taught in a supportive Christian environment but does not clearly state that it is fundamental or not. Given that a significant portion of LSU’s constituents find this an important issue one way or the other due to the fact that it is a private SDA school–it should be stated outright. In fact, I support that no SDA institution should teach anything that does not support church fundamental beliefs–if you feel differently–I am fine with that as long as you teach somewhere else but don’t take a paycheck. You may want to try and work with the church to change understanding of Biblical doctrine before you actively try and undermine them. That is not consistent with church unity or Biblical council.

    The issue still is basically down to the merits of evolution in our church and ordination of women. They are both issues of importance. Similar requests for action have been requested from both sides. I don’t see much difference. Just because there was a different trigger or you are claiming one, you claim to be more righteous–that does not make sense.




    0
    View Comment
  60. @Peter:

    If we all agree on what is being taught at LSU, then why the call for transparency?

    1. Because Bradley’s honest and outfront policy with the fact of evolutionism promoted as the answer for origins in the LSU biology department stands in stark contrast to the LSU marketing department’s “spin doctoring” where they never actually come out and say they teach a literal 7 day creation week or that they teach evoution as the answer for origins. They try to find “hedge words” to avoid the specifics that Bradley so readily expresses in detail.

    2. Because the average reader of LSU’s marketing literature is not paying attention the press statements by professor Bradley nor are they reading the actual biology course material at LSU that pertains to the subject of evolution and just how it is being positione as “the right anser for origins”.

    Because the marketing spin is leaving parents and would-be students “clueless” as to what is really going on in the LSU biology and religion departments.

    On the other hand, if there is still ambiguity on what is being taught, then how can you expect the SECC to censure LSU?

    The only ambiguity – is that which is “designed” into the marketing literature.

    Here’s what it looks like to outside observers: a student took a course that was honestly described in the catalog, got a grade less than he figured he deserved, and tried to blackmail the professor into changing the grade;

    Blackmail by “telling the outside world what the professor is actually doing in class”?

    I find the paucity of logic in that statement to be more transparent than you may have at first imagined.




    0
    View Comment
  61. How many biology professors at our non-LSU university would not LOVE to have the points they give in a given lecture sent out to the entire church as an example of the high standard quality instruction they provide at their university.

    And yet Peter suggests in the posts above – that it would be “blackmail” for a student to offer to tell anyone outside of class about what LSU biology professors say in one of their class lectures. In fact LSU might even want to file legal action to prevent such a dire result from happening. Surely such reasoning is not something that is being promoted by LSU! Surely not!

    How “instructive” for the unbiased objective reader.

    in Christ,

    Bob




    0
    View Comment
  62. Theology is not an academic science, even though the seminary may offer academic degrees. Biology is. The teaching activities of professors is not on the same level as the preaching of a pastor.




    0
    View Comment
  63. This conversation started with the observation of the alacrity with which SECC pounced on pastor Doug’s sermon, while they have been mute regarding the attack on a fundamental teaching of Adventism, and a foundational concept undergirding all of scripture. This is a very important issue for the credibility of the SECC administration. In fact I would suggest that a similar issue of their relationship to the word of God vs contemporary thought is the underlying cause. The same hermeneutic that accomodates the rejection of the biblical gender based roles and also the Deistic evolutionary or even Darwinistic evolutionary hypothesis. The same hermeneutic is useful when reasoning away the prohibition against homo-sexual relationships, pre- and extra-marital sex. In fact, anything to be found in the plain prose sense of the Bible narrative that contradicts the opinions of contemporary society or science can be reasoned away with carefully crafted and seemingly erudite argument utilizing this new way of approaching scripture. I don’t know about you all, but I vote confidence with my tithe and offerings.




    0
    View Comment
  64. Irish, You’re exactly right, and the next issue “after” womens ordination as pastors will be acceptance of “gay marriages” within the SDA Church(as at Glendale City SDA Church) and ordination of gay pastors!

    All of these groups have their own “revisionist” interpretation of scripture [edit]. Or, they just say, “Hey, it’s a different world today than in those ancient, old fashion biblical days. We gotta “get hip” and blend with the postmodern world!




    0
    View Comment
  65. There is something this article should note: La Sierra University is not presenting evolution as truth, but teaching it as a theory in its’ science classes. Women as pastors is Biblical and the fact that Paul even allows women to learn was a big step in the context of Biblical theory. It amazes me that a church that follows a “woman’s” teachings so closely neglects to recognize that at the foundations of our church husband and wife would start a church, husband would go on to evangelize and the women, the wife, would be left to pastor the church. Until we recognize that there is neither male nor female in Christ Jesus, we will not reach our potential as witnesses for Him.




    0
    View Comment
  66. Jamison: There is something this article should note: La Sierra University is not presenting evolution as truth,

    Not according to Prof Bradley’s own statement to the press on that point.

    SAU and other SDA university are “only teaching evolution as theory” but LSU was “in the tank” on the subject of evolution – teaching that it is the right answer for a doctrine on origins.

    They went way beyond the call of simply teaching about a belief system regarding origins held almost universally by atheists and agnostics.

    in Christ,

    Bob




    0
    View Comment
  67. So Two years ago – Bradley’s statement that he did not consider evolution to be junk and would not toss it out the window just because SDA doctrine rejects evolution – was the “sign” that Bradley and the entire LSU biology department were no longer following his stated position and in fact had just turned a corner on that point?

    I find Kent’s logic illusive just then.

    in Christ,

    Bob




    0
    View Comment
  68. Irish: This conversation started with the observation of the alacrity with which SECC pounced on pastor Doug’s sermon, while they have been mute regarding the attack on a fundamental teaching of Adventism, and a foundational concept undergirding all of scripture. This is a very important issue for the credibility of the SECC administration. In fact I would suggest that a similar issue of their relationship to the word of God vs contemporary thought is the underlying cause. The same hermeneutic that accomodates the rejection of the biblical gender based roles and also the Deistic evolutionary or even Darwinistic evolutionary hypothesis.

    Is it mere “coincidence” that the SECC based “theologian in residence” at LSU – who has been there to project an extension of the Seminary at Andrews – “just so happens” to endorse all the agendas listed above and now “predictably” so also does the SECC leadership appear to support those same agendas?

    Some would view it as a tree producing fruit consistent with the tree itself.

    in Christ,

    Bob




    0
    View Comment
  69. It’s amazing the SECC is taking such a strong and public stand for this issue, yet has remained silent about La Sierra promotion of the theory of evolution as the truth.

    In the article one of the accusations against Pastor Batchelor is that he has failed to respect Church authority by upholding the voted statement of two GC sessions on the subject of ordaining women pastors.

    Regardless of which side of the women’s ordination as pastors issue that you are on – it would still be a stretch-wrench-bend of logic to claim that upholding the stated GC session vote is an act of defiance against Church authority.

    in Christ,

    Bob




    0
    View Comment

Comments are closed.