WASC Reviews LSU’s Accreditation

On July 19, 2011 La Sierra University issued a press release regarding an “action letter” from the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) in which WASC noted several points of concern over LSU’s handling of the recent resignation of four members of LSU’s board ( Link ).  WASC was especially concerned over the “divisions on the board concerning the controversy over the teaching of science” and the actions of the board chair (Elder Ricardo Graham) that were largely independent of the board.  WASC suggested that Graham “acted in his capacity as a church leader” rather than as part of an independent board – undermining “institutional autonomy.”  Therefore, WASC issued a “Formal Notice of Concern” to LSU with a scheduled visit to LSU in the Spring of 2012 to evaluate the steps taken by LSU to address the concerns raised by WASC.

The following is an excerpt from the WASC letter:

Based on the bylaws and the statements of the board chair himself, it appears that he did not have independent authority as La Sierra’s board chair to take these actions and was not acting at the instruction of the board. The board chair reported that he consulted only with a few of the Church-designated trustees, members of national Church leadership, and university counsel before asking for the resignations of the four individuals involved. The Commission could infer from these facts that the board chair acted in his capacity as a Church leader, which would be a clear violation of WASC standards on institutional autonomy.

Here is La Sierra’s response to the WASC letter:

Though the University’s eight-year regional accreditation is not affected, WASC has identified concerns regarding the role and composition of the La Sierra University Board of Trustees and issues related to institutional autonomy. Those findings have led WASC to issue a Notice of Concern.

The WASC Commission has requested a meeting between WASC leadership and the university president, provost, and full governing board within the coming 90 days to offer further information as to the reasons for their actions and to discuss the University’s response plan.  WASC has also indicated that they will return for a follow-up visit to La Sierra in Spring 2012 to determine whether appropriate progress is being made in addressing their concerns.

The La Sierra Board of Trustees, which met on July 18 to review the letter, stated that it “takes WASC’s findings seriously,” has reconvened the Articles and Bylaws Committee “in response to concerns noted by WASC”, and plans to meet again in August.

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288 thoughts on “WASC Reviews LSU’s Accreditation

  1. I take it Educate Truthers love this. They would rejoice at a showdown between LSU and WASC. The outcomes they might praise:

    1. Futher headaches for LSU administrators and added tarnish to its reputation.

    2. Forcing LSU to lose or abandon its secular accreditation to become transformed into a non-accredited Bible school. [I am stunned how many think accreditation is a bad thing.]

    3. Forcing LSU to leave the denomination (damning the many students who love and want to remain a part of the SDA church…and the non-SDAs who would no longer be exposed to SDA truth). [I am stunned that so many see this as desirable.]

    “Vengeance is mine, saith the…” Educate Truth crowd.




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  2. Hey, this is a church institution and it isn’t supposed to have autonomy–it is supposed to be accountable to the church who founded it and support it.

    In my opinion, WASC is intruding where it doesn’t belong. Autonomy is a ridiculous requirement.




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  3. Faith: In my opinion, WASC is intruding where it doesn’t belong. Autonomy is a ridiculous requirement.

    Fortunately, Faith doesn’t set the standards that WASC goes by.




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  4. LSU got themselves into their own trouble. Listen to the cry baby liberals who hold influence in the world to be over and above loyalty to God and His word.

    If LSU can’t be saved to promote SDA values and bible teaching, then good riddance. This was EGW’s view as well.

    By the way, I attended La Sierra College in the late 50’s and early 60’s. Of course, it was not a university then.

    I think at least some fundamental SDA Christians are sick to death of hearing unity, unity, unity and acceptance while ignoring fundamental bible truth.

    Bill Sorensen




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  5. Can someone explain something to me? Did President Graham act independently, on his own, or with the Board’s permission, when he fired the individuals?




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  6. Accreditation by secular athiestic authority is threatened? I am sure such a loss would be a blow in many respects.

    How does it compare to what we believe is coming? Or do we really believe it?

    From GC p. 604
    “Fearful is the issue to which the world is to be brought. The powers of earth, uniting to war against the commandments of God, will decree that “all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond” (Revelation 13:16), shall conform to the customs of the church by the observance of the false sabbath. All who refuse compliance will be visited with civil penalties, and it will finally be declared that they are deserving of death. On the other hand, the law of God enjoining the Creator’s rest day demands obedience and threatens wrath against all who transgress its precepts.”

    It is a long steep continuum from where we are today, to where we are headed if the above paragraph is true. Do we really believe in the historic message of our church? That it will happen as we have always understood it will?

    I suspect many participants here do not really believe these things are coming.

    Do we grasp the “New Age” vision of so many in the world – the idea that we are marching forward in a grand and glorious conquest of the world, space, and scientific achievment – that will finally rid the world of disease, poverty, problems and lead us to a glorious conquering of space and realization of our destinies?

    What do we really believe? If we believe the historic faith of our founders, it will give us a wholly different perspective on all of this.




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  7. Based on the bylaws and the statements of the board chair himself, it appears that he did not have independent authority as La Sierra’s board chair to take these actions and was not acting at the instruction of the board. The board chair reported that he consulted only with a few of the Church-designated trustees, members of national Church leadership, and university counsel before asking for the resignations of the four individuals involved. The Commission could infer from these facts that the board chair acted in his capacity as a Church leader, which would be a clear violation of WASC standards on institutional autonomy.

    First of all – the SDA constituents don’t give two cents concern about whether WASC is “happy” the fact that the SDA church owns and operates LSU.

    Contrary to the apparent tone of the WASC letter – most SDAs do NOT view LSU as an independent public university that “just so happens” to have some SDA students and teachers present during any given school year.

    Furthermore – it is highly doubtful that any of the other WASC accredit Christian schools view themselves in such a fashion either. WASC is quickly boxing itself into a corner on this one because in the end – they cannot afford to take actions totally inconsistent with their auditing of their many other Christian denomination owned-and-operated schools.

    in Christ,

    Bob




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  8. WASC is concerned about the “expansive authority of the Board to hire and discharge” faculty. Isn’t that a beaut? Isn’t that usually what Boards do? Otherwise what is the purpose for their existence?

    Having observed the current president of LSU even when he was at former CUC, I have little confidence in his ability to choose persons with total dedication to Adventist theological commitment to Creation, etc.




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  9. Professor Kent: I take it Educate Truthers love this. They would rejoice at a showdown between LSU and WASC. The outcomes they might praise:

    Educate Truth members are not the ones audiotaping themselves talking about plans to manipulate the WASC into acting on behalf of the T.E’s at LSU.

    The guys talking about their ability to manipulate WASC – are more likely to be found over there at the big-left-tent if one can believe their own self-taped audio.

    Maybe you thought you were posting over there just then.

    in Christ,

    Bob




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  10. I wish the leadership of our church would disavow all WASC and the like accreditations, and do self-accreditations instead. THAT would give the school TRUE autonomy.




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  11. Holly Pham: Can someone explain something to me? Did President Graham act independently, on his own, or with the Board’s permission, when he fired the individuals?

    Apparently part of the benefit to the 4 who resigned – was not having the board members hear what they said in their self-taped audio.

    Now they appear to be trying to manipulate WASC so that they can “have it both ways”.

    Work to NOT have their own audio heard by the board- then whine because the board was not included in on the decision to have them resign.

    Oh well – no one ever said that the path of darkness made sense.

    in Christ,

    Bob




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  12. Charles: both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond

    This obviously doesn’t apply to this time since slavery/”bond” does not exist in the US at this time. Things will have to get a lot worse before the US re-institutes slavery.




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  13. I think it’s time that all christian (as well as any other religious college) universities in the region pull together and sue WASC for discrimination. Either WASC is especially picking on LSU using a double standard, or ALL Christian colleges in the region already submit their theology to WASC (which I highly doubt), or WASC is setting a precedent which will make it impossible for any Christian college to hold to whatever religious standards they may have.

    There are two issues at play here. One is how an Adventist College should uphold their teachings, that’s for the church to decide. The other is whether or not the WASC has any business interfering in religious issues.




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  14. JohnB: self-accreditations

    Is that kind of like a self audit?
    Are you serious? Why bother?

    I think WASC should be commended for defending religious freedom within our schools. I am still mystified how the church can claim to believe in religious freedom and persecute their teachers.




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  15. You are not actually taking the time to think about what you are saying.

    The upside down logic that would argue that a church run instition cannot be “run by the church” because to do so is to “deny religious freedom”, is not the kind of logic that lasts long in the light of day.

    in Christ,

    Bob




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  16. Wayne: ALL Christian colleges in the region already submit their theology to WASC

    The problem is, you are confusing Theology and Science. WASC doesn’t care what you teach in theology classes, in fact it would probably get after you if you didn’t enforce denominational guidelines. The problem is that you are trying to teach theology in a science class. Science is different that religion, and as far as I know there aren’t any other Christian colleges or universities that confuse the two.




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  17. In which case blind faith evolutionism should have been excluded from all science classes because it is nothing more than junk-science and bad-religion about “birds coming from reptiles” no matter our observations in nature to the contrary of that evolutionist mythology.

    In fact if you let them tell their story long enough – they will in fact argue that “birds come from plants” — it is a longggg story as it turns out.

    in Christ,

    Bob




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  18. @BobRyan:
    Bob, think about it. What is religious freedom if it isn’t the obligation of the majority to tolerate the beliefs of the minority without prejudice or persecution no matter how wrong the majority thinks the minority opinion is.

    A teacher in an Adventist institution that teaches evolution is definitely a minority, and the church at large is violating the principle of religious freedom when they persecute such a teacher.

    Elder Wilson, asked every church member to speak up for Religious freedom. I am speaking up. I believe the principle of religious freedom applies to the church even more strongly than it applies to secular society.




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  19. BobRyan: blind faith evolutionism should have been excluded from all science classes

    Bob, This is an illogical rant. It seems to me that you are willingly ignorant of the facts. Science is about what we can see and measure. We can see and measure evolution. It isn’t junk science. It is very productive science. You are like a blind man ranting at everyone who can see. I am sorry you are blind, but am afraid you will never convince honest hearted people that evolution doesn’t exist just because you refuse to see it.




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  20. Charles: Do we really believe in the historic message of our church?

    Yes, do you believe in Present Truth, that truth is ever progressive?

    Don’t forget that Mrs. White implied that we would have to change some of our fundamental beliefs as truth progresses.




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  21. “Ranting Ryan” certainly does have a ring to it.

    At the opposite end of the spectrum, I see that Ron adds another rare voice of reason and rationality on the EducateTruth(sic) site. A welcome breath of fresh air.




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  22. Ron: Don’t forget that Mrs. White implied that we would have to change some of our fundamental beliefs as truth progresses.

    Ellen White:We are not to receive the words of those who come with a message that contradicts the special points of our faith. They gather together a mass of Scripture, and pile it as proof around their asserted theories. This has been done over and over again during the past fifty years. And while the Scriptures are God’s word, and are to be respected, the application of them, if such application moves one pillar from the foundation that God has sustained these fifty years, is a great mistake. He who makes such an application knows not the wonderful demonstration of the Holy Spirit that gave power and force to the past messages that have come to the people of God.– Preach the Word, p. 5

    Do you know what the pillars of our faith are Ron?

    Ellen White:Messages of every order and kind have been urged upon Seventh-day Adventists, to take the place of the truth which, point by point, has been sought out by prayerful study, and testified to by the miracle-working power of the Lord. But the waymarks which have made us what we are, are to be preserved, and they will be preserved, as God has signified through His word and the testimony of His Spirit. He calls upon us to hold firmly, with the grip of faith, to the fundamental principles that are based upon unquestionable authority.—Special Testimonies, Series B, No. 2, p. 59 (1904).




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  23. Ervin Taylor: “Ranting Ryan” certainly does have a ring to it.

    Indeed – but if you want the full experience of ad hominem enjoyment – you need to visit more often over at the big-left-tent.

    I notice that even your own A.Today is not as inclinded to the ad hominem frenzy that we see over at the big-left-tent.

    Perhaps you thought you were posting over there – just then.

    Who knows?

    in Christ,

    Bob




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  24. First Ron makes the self-conflicted mistake of arguing that religious points of view should be excluded from science classes.

    So I point out the religious nature of the argument for evolutionism.

    BobRyan: blind faith evolutionism should have been excluded from all science classes because it is nothing more than junk-science and bad-religion about “birds coming from reptiles” no matter our observations in nature to the contrary of that evolutionist mythology.
    In fact if you let them tell their story long enough – they will in fact argue that “birds come from plants” — it is a longggg story as it turns out.

    Ron: Bob, This is an illogical rant. It seems to me that you are willingly ignorant of the facts. Science is about what we can see and measure. We can see and measure evolution.

    Well once again you shoot your own argument in the foot. We do NOT “observe or measure – birds coming from reptiles”.

    And as even your own failed attempt showed in regard to the prokaryotes – evolutionists want to “claim they made one” only to be “shown” that all they did is some gene map in already existing yeast cells.

    How sad that evolutionism’s fictions are so blatantly obvious.

    No wonder atheist evolutionists like Patterson lament the religious nature of their proclamations.

    How sad that even one SDA would pretend to be duped by such tactics.

    in Christ,

    Bob




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  25. Ron: @BobRyan:
    Bob, think about it. What is religious freedom if it isn’t the obligation of the majority to tolerate the beliefs of the minority without prejudice or persecution no matter how wrong the majority thinks the minority opinion is.

    Wrong.

    Religious freedom as you define it would mean that SDAs must “pay” evolutionists, and spiritualists and wickens who wish to preach their doctrine in our churches — or else we are denying them the open door that you define as religious freedom.

    You are dead wrong.

    Religious freedom is the freedom to have your specific view of religion without being forced to have other views forced into your church.

    As soon as you claim that the RC point of view must be proclaimed and taught in our schools – and paid for by the members – you have gone to the same dark ages extreme – as the … “dark ages” in your lack of understanding on just what religious freedom is.

    The fact that you are now substituting RC out in favor of “the worst form of infidelity” (3SG 90-91 makes it clear) — does not help your argument.

    You need to take a few minutes to think about your solution.

    in Christ,

    Bob




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  26. Ron, Would you please direct us to the reference in EGW’s writings that says we will have to give up or significantly change our distinctive beliefs.




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  27. Erv has to periodically vent here to let off some steam. He has to once again use his (sic) addition to the name Educate Truth to show his anger towards conservatives who are loyal to the Bible’s clear beliefs, when he is not.

    I see that he once again has failed to provide the 98% overwhelming evidence of evolution and is just full of hot air!

    Erv, everyone here can see you clearly for who you are, an angry progressive old man who hates SDA beliefs does everything in your power to tear them down.




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  28. Anybody who thinks or tries to push the idea that this fiasco with LSU is ET’s fault needs to have their head examined!

    This problem is CLEARLY LSU’s fault from start to the finish. The University administrators and Board members for a decade or more have practiced “good ol’ boy” SDA politics as usual and have abdicated their responsibility and ignored the warning signs that this was coming because they were not willing to stand for the truth or do what was right and correct the error that wad being taught.

    Educate Truthers do not share in this blame. We are here simply to say enough is enough, it’s time for accountability. This could have been corrected very easily about 2 years ago when it was first brought to light, but LSU continued its lies and deception. LSU made this worse, not ET!!! It is time to let the chips fall where they will. This could still be corrected if the Board had the desire to really fix the problem. That would include adding some new loyal SDA faculty to the Departments of Religion and Biology, Getting rid of those faculty that are not interested in being loyal to the church, and replacing Whisby with a strong leader who will follow truth “tho the heaven’s fall.” Do I have hope that this will happen, no. Not many Daniels exist today.




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  29. I guess I should slightly amend my last post. I should have said, there are not many Daniels in the official church structure, except Ted Wilson and Cliff Goldstein. There are still Daniels in the church membership, Shane, Sean, and David Read being three.




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  30. Faithful Disciple: Erv, everyone here can see you clearly for who you are, an angry progressive old man who hates SDA beliefs does everything in your power to tear them down.

    Wrong. That may be your (unchristian) way of looking at him. Some of us see an intellectual giant in comparison to the others on this site (with the exception of Brantley and Jeff Kent).




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  31. Faithful Disciple: I guess I should slightly amend my last post. I should have said, there are not many Daniels in the official church structure, except Ted Wilson and Cliff Goldstein. There are still Daniels in the church membership, Shane, Sean, and David Read being three.

    I agree that there are not very many. But Jerry Page is also someone I have also always admired.




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  32. Ron: Yes, do you believe in Present Truth, that truth is ever progressive? Don’t forget that Mrs. White implied that we would have to change some of our fundamental beliefs as truth progresses.

    Ron, Do you think Dr. Taylor is a modern day prophet who can give us some new present truth?




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  33. Hmm. An “angry progressive old man” who is a
    “modern day prophet.” I think I will try that out on my grandchildren and see what they think.




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  34. Ervin Taylor: Hmm. An “angry progressive old man” who is a“modern day prophet.” I think I will try that out on my grandchildren and see what they think.

    Dr. Taylor, Do your grandchildren actually agree with your views? How old are they? Are they SDA?

    Don’t you think “you” may be a modernday Ellen White? You have many great ideas, as I’ve read over on Adventist Today.

    You’ve called for the resignation of Mr. Knott. You’ve made fun of many of our SDA evangelists who use catastrophies as possible signs of Christ’s return.




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  35. Faithful Disciple: Erv has to periodically vent here to let off some steam. He has to once again use his (sic) addition to the name Educate Truth to show his anger towards conservatives who are loyal to the Bible’s clear beliefs, when he is not. I see that he once again has failed to provide the 98% overwhelming evidence of evolution and is just full of hot air! Erv, everyone here can see you clearly for who you are, an angry progressive old man who hates SDA beliefs does everything in your power to tear them down.

    Faithful, Does the Loma Linda Universtiy church allow people who hate SDA beliefs to be members? I agree that Dr. Taylor seems to fit that description from his views over on the Adventist Today website, however.




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  36. @Ron:
    “I think WASC should be commended for defending religious freedom within our schools. I am still mystified how the church can claim to believe in religious freedom and persecute their teachers”

    Ron, the issue is not one of religious freedom. Each of these teachers is free to think and believe what they want to. I have absolutely no problem with that, and would most rigorously defend that right. However, they don’t have a right to sabotage their employer, which is LSU, and by extension, the Adventist Church at large.
    Having a secret agenda (and pushing that agenda) which counters the beliefs of the church cannot be anything more or less than sabotage.
    Everyone must be aware of his/her influence, and especially people in positions of authority. Officials at a school always represent the school, and if they don’t want that responsibility (or can’t handle that responsibility) then they should not accept that responsibility. It is very appropriate to ask them to resign if they cannot properly represent the school.




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  37. Ron: Don’t forget that Mrs. White implied that we would have to change some of our fundamental beliefs as truth progresses.

    Ron, I think what you are implying is a very serious mis-reading of what she said and implied.

    Also, how do you know she wasn’t addressing that to folks such as yourself that apparently don’t believe in the authority of Scripture? Maybe she was implying that you needed to come into closer harmony with Scripture?

    I might remind you briefly of Proverbs 16:25 which says that “There is a way that seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.”

    What I say doesn’t matter. What you say doesn’t matter. If either one of us is in rebellion against God, it won’t end well for for the one(s) in rebellion.
    We might all do well to always remember that.




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  38. Ron: Yes, do you believe in Present Truth, that truth is ever progressive? Don’t forget that Mrs. White implied that we would have to change some of our fundamental beliefs as truth progresses.

    Ron, Which of the fundamental beliefs do you think we need to change? How are we to know which ones are to be changed?




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  39. Faithful Disciple: Ron, Would you please direct us to the reference in EGW’s writings that says we will have to give up or significantly change our distinctive beliefs.
    Faithful Disciple(Quote)

    It will be interesting to see if once again Ron is not actually dealing in fact.

    in Christ,

    Bob




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  40. Charles:
    @Bob Pickle:
    Meaning?

    LSU stated:

    Though the University’s eight-year regional accreditation is not affected, WASC has identified concerns regarding the role and composition of the La Sierra University Board of Trustees and issues related to institutional autonomy.

    So what does that mean? That means that the WASC wants LSU to operate independently of the denomination. “Institutional autonomy.” And the WASC is concerned about how many church leaders and/or members are on the board, it appears.




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  41. Ron: This obviously doesn’t apply to this time since slavery/”bond” does not exist in the US at this time. Things will have to get a lot worse before the US re-institutes slavery.

    (Cough.) Slavery does exist currently in the U.S., and has so for a number of years. That’s why Pres. Bush and Gov. Jeb Bush held a conference on slavery in Florida during their terms of office. That’s why National Geographic did an article on slavery several years ago, discussing the three guys in Florida who were convicted and sent to prison over running an agriculture-related slave camp.

    But as far as EGW’s predictions go, she seemed to associate at least some of her predictions with violations of Sunday laws. And it is a fact that the Amendment to the U.S. Constitution that abolished slavery made an exception for those convicted of crime.

    Thus, slavery for convicted criminals is still to this day constitutional in America.




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  42. I don’t know much about slavery for criminals, but there have been many reports of sexual slavery and such all aroung the world, including the U.S.




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  43. @Bob Pickle:

    I understand what you mean now.

    SAU has a good relationship with SACS as far as I know. And I do not believe that SAU professors are teaching evolution as fact / truth of origins. Maybe SACS are not as advanced as WASC.

    I am quite sure that SAU does not offer tenure to anyone either.

    But this is the Bible belt and SDAs are not the only religion that believe in a literal 7-day first week creation event that happened about 6,000 years ago.




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  44. Holly, I’m sure that LLU university church has people who hate SDA beliefs. Probably every SDA church in the country has someone who hates our beliefs to a greater or lesser degree. That is what the shaking is for, to correct that problem.

    What LLU, LSU, and all of the college and university churches have that is disturbing is that they are teaching our young people. These PhD’s who have questioned themselves out of believing our Bible doctrines are dragging impressionable young people with them.

    People like Erv and his Adventist Today(sic) crowd would have us all believe that it takes a PhD to understand the Bible, and that the Bible is very fuzzy and open to many interpretations. That allows them to use their intellect to decide what it really means. They can then reshape and discard our beliefs one at a time.

    What they don’t seem to remember is that the Bible is written for ALL people and Jesus more than once pointed out that the simple really “got it” while the educated were the ones that were wrong. The Holy Spirit is the expositor of Biblical truth for all of us, not PhD’s.

    In order not to be misunderstood, I do need to make a disclaimer. Not all of our professors are bad. We have some stellar minds and great teachers who are loyal to our church and its beliefs. Unfortunately they get are affected by the bad apples in their (our) midst too. Some of the finest Christians I’ve ever known have been faculty members that trained me. Perhaps they should be the one’s that lead us through these hard times.




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  45. Folks, these discussions are clearly not in the spirit of Christ. The sarcasm is dripping, accusations flying. This is truly sad. It is possible to take a stand with firm but kind language. I am embarrassed and saddened by this.




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  46. “Kill them all, God will know his own.”

    Really, pauluc? What is it about Faith that reminds you of the pope who exterminated the Cathars?




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  47. It is simply where libs go according to the historic account that we have when they built the golden calf in defiance of the Word of God.

    in Christ,

    Bob




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  48. Faithful Disciple: Not all of our professors are bad. We have some stellar minds and great teachers who are loyal to our church and its beliefs.

    Indeed we have a great group who are faithful to God.

    But there was an unnintended consequence of the “Faith and Sciences Conferences” held by the previous Administration where they affirmed our FB#6 and yet unwittingly gave approval to being evolutionist and hiring evolutionists so long as you made some kind of claim to holding to FB#6.

    This was a huge open door to apostasy since many biology professors did not think it was their job to even talk about FB#6 officially – so if they happened to be T.E. they could always rationalize some a way to fit it in with a watered down FB#6.

    And people like LSU’s Fritz Guy were more than happy to hold that door open for them when it came to FB#6.

    in Christ,

    Bob




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  49. This issue with WASC expressing concern, (meddling) in the hiring and firing decisions of the LSU board reminds of this statement from Prophets and Kings, p 188.

    The time is not far distant when the test will come to every soul. The observance of the false sabbath will be urged upon us. The contest will be between the commandments of God and the commandments of men. Those who have yielded step by step to worldly demands and conformed to worldly customs will then yield to the powers that be, rather than subject themselves to derision, insult, threatened imprisonment, and death. At that time the gold will be separated from the dross. True godliness will be clearly distinguished from the appearance and tinsel of it. Many a star that we have admired for its brilliance will then go out in darkness. Those who have assumed the ornaments of the sanctuary, but are not clothed with Christ’s righteousness, will then appear in the shame of their own nakedness. {PK 188.1}

    The religion of the “false sabbath” is closely connected with Evolutionism since both directly or indirectly point to the SUN as the creative force which should be honored. Evolutionists can provide no laboratory evidence to explain how carbon based molecules became amino acids, became proteins, became single-celled organisms, but they are unanimous in the belief that the sun had something to do with it. Likewise, Papists and Sunday keeping Protestants can provide no evidence from the Bible for keeping the false sabbath other than the wisdom and traditions of fallen, sinful men who never fully gave up Pagan sun worship!

    Notice this point carefully: “The contest will be between the commandments of God and the commandments of men.” What does the 4th Commandment present as its authority for requiring obedience? “For in six days THE LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is…” This truth is the foundation which the entire system of truth known as the third angel’s message rests upon. The enemy knows that if he can weaken the position of God’s people on the issue of origins, then our position on the Sabbath will be greatly weakened as well.

    To rephrase the above quote and apply it to the present situation:
    “The time is not far distant when the test will come to every SDA Institution. The observance of the false sabbath will be urged upon our schools as condition for continued accreditation.”




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  50. @Steve Shedell:

    Well said, my brother.

    I suspect that those on this board defending the teaching of evolution (as truth and fact) in our schools have little regard for what EGW has written.

    Can you feel the shaking?




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  51. Charles said…..

    “I suspect that those on this board defending the teaching of evolution (as truth and fact) in our schools have little regard for what EGW has written.”

    Charles, you and I know they have “little regard” for EGW in the church today.

    A lot of lip service and duplicity akin to what is happening with the LSU situation.

    I am not sure where we should go morally in this present situation. But I do know that there can and will come a time when we must necessarily seperate from apostacy or be held accountable ourselves for what other teach and embrace.

    I assume we freely chose to join the church of our choice with the understanding that it would continue to represent our own personal understanding of truth. So, just as “the church” can seperate us from its communion if “the church” feels we no longer represent its doctrine and teaching, we in turn must also place the church on trial and probation with the same goal in mind.

    “Can two walk together except they be agreed?”

    The only question now is this. At what point must there be a seperation? The church is not a civil society where we are born into membership. We are citizens by birth into our country. This does not apply to religion.

    Can we honestly “call people out of Babylon” to join us if we are becoming “Babylon” ourselves? Some would like to avoid any decision with the hope they need not make any moral decision concerning these issues.

    Today, Adventism is so fragmented and we are in a major identity crisis. Consider this, independent ministries are not officially accountable to the organized church. Amazing Facts, 3ABN, and a host of others do not make members of their organization.

    You have no official say so in anything they do. In a technical way, we do have a say so in the SDA church because we are official members. Not so of any independent ministry. So, we may have no practical influence in the church, but on the official and technical side, we do.

    It would seem the only viable conclusion is this, God will create the final Christian community as the Holy Spirit works through the bible. Christanity has always been a loose knit fellowship by way of human standards and social communion. But a close knit fellowship by way of the bible.

    Not only has EGW been ignored by church leadership for the most part, the same can be said about their attitude concerning scripture. Scripture has been wrested again and again from its biblical context and meaning. All with the purpose of defending the liberal agenda in the church today.

    “Judge not that ye be not judged” now means we have no standards to determine who is qualifed to be a church member. For if we apply standards, we are ipso facto judging. This meaning is so far from the biblical norm, it has no affinity to scriptural meaning and application. Yet, it is repeated again and again to support a false meaning to avoid discipline.

    This in and of itself is enough to condemn “the church” of ignorance and apostacy and spiritual blindness. One final comment. Sin can not heal itself. Nor can false ideas and teaching support and strengthen a church community.

    Unless there is true repentance, the outcome is certain failure.

    Hope you all have a happy Sabbath.

    Keep the faith

    Bill Sorensen




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  52. Ron, we are still waiting for that EGW quote that says that we are going to change our Fendamental Beliefs. Have you found it yet?




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  53. Notice Matt. 7:1-5

    7:1 Judge not, that ye be not judged.
    7:2 For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again.
    7:3 And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother’s eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye?
    7:4 Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold, a beam [is] in thine own eye?
    7:5 Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother’s eye. ”

    The warning is against being a hypocrite. And tells us after carefully considering our own spirituality, we may have discerment to deal with a brother.

    The text does not condemn judgment, but duplicity.

    It is the same as in Romans two where Paul deals with the same sin. So Paul would ask, “How is you condemn sin when you are sinning yourself, doing the exact same sin?”

    Those who claim you can not judge, often use it as a “cop out” for their Christian duty to “cry aloud, spare not….’ and take the same attitude as Cain who said, “Am I my brothers keeper?”

    Now it is true, no one can “judge” another person’s final salvation. This is what the Catholic church does when it consigns people to hell or heaven. Even Jesus said, “I judge no man, for judgment comes at the end of the world.”

    Did this keep Jesus from condemning the religious leaders of His day for their duplicity? In no way. He said, “Ye are of your father the devil……”

    But Jesus knew that some could and would repent as they were convicted and saw the truth concerning themselves.

    Not only do we have a right to judge, but we are commanded to judge all things according to God’s word. The way the phrase “judge not” is used today in much of Adventism is in harmony with the false gospel being advocated by many.

    When you understand that Satan’s final goal is universalism, you can see why he has corrupted this scripture to be in harmony with his ultimate goal.

    Bill Sorensen




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  54. @David Read: Thanks for the invitation to respond.
    1] The papal legate Arnaud Amalric to whom this phrase is attributed was I am certain a Godly man who was dedicated to defending the truth that he knew for certain just as those on this site seek to do.
    2] Those defending the status quo did not at that time at all sympathisize with the heresies of the Cathars (or Albigensians as they seem to have been known in the languedoc region of France).
    3] The papal forces were persecuting those who EG White in the GC pg 271 called “witnesses for the truth”. The rub is that I think most Christians and certainly Adventist now would accept the Albigenses were unorthodox in their views particularly in their gnostic view that there was a pure God who demanded our worship and an evil physical world created by the Rex Mundi the “God of this world” who had equal status. That does resonate somewhat with your own view that the world we see now reflects the corrupt creative power of the devil.
    4] The papal forces at that time like the supporters of the status quo today did not understand that the search for truth that EG White recognized in the heresy of the reformation could possibly be from God and sought only to eliminate it without consideration.
    5] I would certainly concede that I do not think that those on this site are asking to burn people at the stake but the sentiment is notheless the same as that of Arnaud Amalric. There is little concern for the grace and compassion or understanding that I find in the Gospels.
    6] Just as the Papal forces did not understand the reformation or if they did they falsely characterized their supposed adversaries, here I find the same lack of willingness to address the very real questions and difficulties that exist and instead provide simplistic characterizations and platitudes. It is easier to simply eliminate the alternative views than to consider the merit.

    Take one statement from the last post; “this board defending the teaching of evolution (as truth and fact) in our schools” Is this really what the board is doing? Ambition by the church for recognition has resulted in the desire to have a University. In aspiring to this status there are certain obligations which the board is struggling to fulfil. To understand these one has to understand that a University is a collection of independent scholars that are a source of new knowledge and understanding and that academic tradition cannot exist without the ability to pursue new ideas and understanding in any field; ie academic freedom. I think that you do understand this as evident by your call for downgrading the status of LSU from an accredited university to a bible college that is not at all beholden to any secular authority. This is quite consistent with your desire that the school is directly controlled in every way by the church that is charged with seeing that the University does not depart in any way from the orthodoxy of historical Adventism. This however will have implications in terms of LSU as a school that can provide degrees and pre-medical training for LLU or any other accredited medical school but I am sure this is of little concern and that you will next want to roll back the status of LLU from a University conferring medical degrees back to its original God given incarnation as a college of medical evangelism. The sacrifice I am sure will be worth it in that you will be as true to your understanding as a needle is to the pole.
    In taking on this mission from God I think you are truly acting in the tradition of Arnaud Amalric.




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  55. Pauluc:

    Faith here–the one you directed your remark to earlier to open the door to the opportunity to post the above statement. (Though why you felt you needed to use such a ploy is beyond me.)

    Apparently you are one of the “progressives” and, it wouldn’t surprise me if you were one of the professors.

    In the name of “academic freedom” you seem to be prepared to concede any and all of the principles that the SDA church is founded upon like they have no value. Well, here’s a flash for you: these principles were a gift from God Himself, and are to be used in every aspect of our lives–including education.

    “…one has to understand that a University is a collection of independent scholars that are a source of new knowledge and understanding and that academic tradition cannot exist without the ability to pursue new ideas and understanding in any field; ie academic freedom.”

    As the professors are in the employ of the SDA church it is their bounden duty to uphold the principles of their employer–not subversively teach the opposite. They don’t have the right to decide for the whole church what is acceptable and what is not–they are not independant scholars. And what makes a “scholar” anyway? They are only people who have imbibed information from someone else. They are not God-inspired, unless they learned at His feet. So, unlike so many people around the universities, I don’t consider them a bit better than any of the rest of us. As SDA Christians, we have a higher standard; God is to be our source of all knowledge, not some pompous, self-inflated graduated student of the world that has slurped up worldly knowledge and now thinks they are like some demi-god who knows it all.

    Anyone who believes in evolution in any form (TE included) is greatly deceived. It does not fit the character of God in any way, shape, or form. It limits His power, and deprives Him of the glory and honor He so richly deserves. Obviously, as any thinking Christian can see, this fits into Satan’s agenda. For millenia he has tried to take away the honor and glory from God–and evolution is a marvelous way to do just that.

    You criticize us on this site because you think we have no right to limit your definition of “academic freedom”. If you want the freedom to believe a lie–you have it–God gave it to you. However, He does not give you the freedom to teach this lie within the church institution that He established. If you want to teach it (or have it taught to you), go to the public universities who teach it ad nauseum.

    I notice that the people who come on this site touting “academic freedom” usually show themselves to be worshiping education and self rather than God. They give no glory to Him as their Creator. They care not what He wants. They feel free to make all judgment calls without reference to God or His church. Apparently they feel they are more qualified by their vast education to make the decisions themselves. They seem to feel they are smarter than God Himself. They look down their noses at the general membership of the SDA church because we are apparently (to them) not intelligent enough to understand or know what is really going on. They seem to be filled with self.

    These qualities are so obviously anti-Christian, that it leaves one to wonder why they want anything to do with a church-owned and operated institution in the first place. Anyone who does not subscribe to SDA standards and principles is certainly free to go elsewhere. They are NOT free to attempt to change our church from the inside out.

    I notice that there is much disdain for the idea of a Bible college among these same people. Yet that is what our institutions started out to be. Those involved in these institutions are now so anxious to pattern our institutions (and themselves, for that matter) after the world, that they want to hijack them out from under the church (that they also apparently disdain.) You do realize that is stealing, don’t you? And theft comes with penalties both on this earth and the next.

    The institutions belong to the church–not the faculty, employees, board members, or administrators. Nor do these people have any right to do as they please, without reference to the church, in the discharge of the duties they accepted on behalf of the church.

    You want academic freedom? Try getting it at any public college–even they have their limits. I daresay if you tried to teach Creation at a public university, you would soon see just how much academic freedom you really have there. I happen to know that you are not allowed to mention God in public colleges and universities, yet there is no problem with freely discussing spiritualism–and, in truth, it is often taught as bona fide courses within these institutions. Nowadays it is unsafe for our youth to attend these places–and now you want to make our institutions just as unsafe in the name of academic freedom? Please.

    Just for the record–the board has a right to uphold the principles of the church–not provide the professors the right to undermine them.




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  56. Preach the truth Faith!

    “The enemy of souls has sought to bring in the supposition that a great reformation was to take place among Seventh-day Adventists, and that this reformation would consist in giving up the doctrines which stand as the pillars of our faith, and engaging in a process of reorganization. Were this reformation to take place, what would result? The principles of truth that God in His wisdom has given to the remnant church, would be discarded. Our religion would be changed. The fundamental principles that have sustained the work for the last fifty years would be accounted as error. A new organization would be established. Books of a new order would be written. A system of intellectual philosophy would be introduced. The founders of this system would go into the cities, and do a wonderful work. The Sabbath of course, would be lightly regarded, as also the God who created it. Nothing would be allowed to stand in the way of the new movement. The leaders would teach that virtue is better than vice, but God being removed, they would place their dependence on human power, which, without God, is worthless. Their foundation would be built on the sand, and storm and tempest would sweep away the structure.

    Who has authority to begin such a movement? We have our Bibles. We have our experience, attested to by the miraculous working of the Holy Spirit. We have a truth that admits of no compromise. Shall we not repudiate everything that is not in harmony with this truth?” Ellen G. White, Selected Messages, vol. 1, pages 204, 205.

    “The days are fast approaching when there will be great perplexity and confusion. Satan, clothed in angel robes, will deceive, if possible, the very elect. There will be gods many and lords many. Every wind of doctrine will be blowing. Those who have rendered supreme homage to “science falsely so called” will not be the leaders then. Those who have trusted to intellect, genius, or talent will not then stand at the head of rank and file. They did not keep pace with the light. Those who have proved themselves unfaithful will not then be entrusted with the flock. In the last solemn work few great men will be engaged. They are self-sufficient, independent of God, and He cannot use them. The Lord has faithful servants, who in the shaking, testing time will be disclosed to view. There are precious ones now hidden who have not bowed the knee to Baal. They have not had the light which has been shining in a concentrated blaze upon you. But it may be under a rough and uninviting exterior the pure brightness of a genuine Christian character will be revealed. In the day time we look toward heaven but do not see the stars. They are there, fixed in the firmament, but the eye cannot distinguish them. In the night we behold their genuine luster.”

         “The time is not far distant when the test will come to every soul. The mark of the beast will be urged upon us. Those who have step by step yielded to worldly demands and conformed to worldly customs will not find it a hard matter to yield to the powers that be, rather than subject themselves to derision, insult, threatened imprisonment, and death. The contest is between the commandments of God and the commandments of men. In this time the gold will be separated from the dross in the church. True godliness will be clearly distinguished from the appearance and tinsel of it. Many a star that we have admired for its brilliancy will then go out in darkness. Chaff like a cloud will be borne away on the wind, even from places where we see only floors of rich wheat. All who assume the ornaments of the sanctuary, but are not clothed with Christ’s righteousness, will appear in the shame of their own nakedness.” Ellen G. White, 5 Testimonies pages 80-81




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  57. Hello,

    I am a Seventy-day Adventist who happened to stumble over this site a couple months ago. I have one question. Really, what are you fighting over?

    Isn’t there a better way to deal with the issues that you (all) seem so torn over?




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  58. While I believe in freedom of speech, in my opinion much of the content on this site seems reactionary and unsettling. Who’s responsible for this site? I trust that much prayer has gone into this decision . . .




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  59. Calvin:

    We have here a situation where the church-owned institution is allowing professors to teach material in the classroom that undermines the doctrine of the SDA church. What is at stake here is the souls of those students who attend, the survival of the beliefs of the church, and the reputation of the church itself.

    It has called forth righteous indignation on the part of those members of the SDA church who love God, His church, and the doctrines He gave us.

    Personally I believe these issues are important enough to fight for and I believe that at times we need to be soldiers of Christ and this is one of those times. We are told that if we don’t stand up and renounce error, then we are partakers of the sin.

    I would be interested to hear your suggestions on how these issues can be dealt with. We are doing the best we can.




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  60. @Faithful Disciple: Thanks for your response. To clarify
    1] I have never been an do not intend to be employed in a church educational institution. I much prefer the collegial atmosphere of a University where there is respect for other scholars and a desire to seek new knowledge and understanding without proscribing the parameters of that search.
    2] I am an SDA Christian who willingly embraces the faith of our father and acknowledges that we as Christians have many incidences in our past that can only cause the angels to weep. The incident in Beziers being one such. I see too often in that history a pattern of the desire to be right and certain at the expense of compassion and love.
    3] You are right the professors are within the employ of the SDA church that has every right to tell them exactly what to teach and to control every aspect of their life at the school but I am not sure they have the right to control every aspect of their life. There is however a quid pro quo in calling the school a university. The cost of that status is giving the scholars independence in their research and in allowing them to teaching the accepted wisdom in their field of expertise. The assurance of that University status is by accreditation by some external body. This applies to every university that is to receive government funding
    4] You say “Anyone who believes in evolution in any form is greatly deceived”. This conclusion I presume is based on deep understanding of the science in this field or are you merely a reflector of other men’s thoughts? It is very easy to dismiss something of which you have no knowledge. If you do want to understand for yourself I would suggest you start by reading a book by a fine Christian gentleman David Young called “Discovering evolution” that gives the historical context for the study of the origin of species in the early 19th century.
    Do you believe as did most scientists at the time of Carl Linnaeus in the late 18th century that God is continually creating new species to account for the huge variety of species? Do you believe that there has been a process of hyper-evolution from the pair or 7 pairs of animals that emerged from the ark to give the diversity of life some 4000 years later?
    5] I do not fault you in wanting to limit academic freedom in Adventist schools but I do ask you to recognize that you cannot have an accredited university and so do.
    6] I do not have disdain for a bible college any more than I can fault the function of implementation of a Madrasas. They have an important function in imparting a body of defined knowledge and understanding but they serve a much different purpose than a University which is concerned with expanding and creating knowledge. Out of fear of the unknown you are quite welcome to eschew the risk associated with academic freedom and the process of science but for consistency you should then also avoid the products of that science much as the Amish do. In this Adventism is in a bit of a bind since it places great stock on health and higher education. Do you want to go back to the 1864 water treatments as the pinnacle of health care?
    6] I have academic freedom in my institution. I am a scientist with a PhD in immunogenetics. I can teach whatever I want including creation science but I will be judged on certain criteria. Have I subjected my ideas to peer review by publication? Have I presented it to my peers for criticism in an open forum at national and international meetings. Do others cite my work? Can I provide the data to support my ideas. Is my hypothesis convincing and am I active in a research program to test these ideas. If one wants to do science you must follow these rules of engagement; experimental hypothesis testing. Academics at Adventists Universities know these things. They also know that creation by divine fiat as a scientific explanation rather than a faith position was rejected more than a 150 years ago. I suspect they are struggling now to avoid perjuring themselves on questions of scientific origins while maintaining the Adventist tradition of God as creator and faith in Jesus. Sites like this that follow the no holds barred tradition of Arnaud Amalric do not make it easy. It seems you would rather have in Adventist colleges people who willingly tell lies for God or are willingly ignorant as the source of your scientific knowledge.




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  61. Pauluc:

    Just so you know, you were addressing my arguments, not Faithful Disciple’s. His was a series of very good quotations from the SOP.

    “1] I have never been an do not intend to be employed in a church educational institution.”

    Thank God for that.

    “Have I subjected my ideas to peer review by publication? Have I presented it to my peers for criticism in an open forum at national and international meetings. Do others cite my work? Can I provide the data to support my ideas. Is my hypothesis convincing and am I active in a research program to test these ideas. If one wants to do science you must follow these rules of engagement; experimental hypothesis testing. Academics at Adventists Universities know these things. ”

    Again you make it plain that you judge your beliefs on what man accepts or rejects with no reference to God. You think you are an SDA? No true SDA puts the opinions of men above the Word of God. We are “the people of the Book”, a reputation we earned because we base our beliefs on the Bible.

    You seem to think that because you have a PhD, that you are able to make all the rules–providing, of course, all your other little Phd friends agree with you. What an empty, sad little world you must live in.

    Those of us without Phds (and some with Phds who have not become so self-inflated) tend to put our confidence in God and His word. I believe that is what Jesus referred to when He said, “Except ye be as little children…”
    We aren’t supposed to be a bunch of puffed up, self-important, worldly-minded individuals. We are supposed to be humble believers in God and His word. You might try that sometime.

    “The cost of that status is giving the scholars independence in their research and in allowing them to teaching the accepted wisdom in their field of expertise.”

    No it isn’t. Just because we call our institutions “universities” doesn’t give the “scholars” any right to teach whatever they like.

    And if that is the case (and I am not saying it is) it would be far better for us to retreat to the term “college” than to be said by those that have wandered so far astray that they believe an obvious lie.

    “I can teach whatever I want including creation science…”

    Yea, right. You know full well that your “peers” that you consider so wonderfully important wouldn’t give Creation the time of day and it wouldn’t be included in any peer-reviewed literature, so you feel safe in making such a purposely misleading statement.

    I still can’t get over how supposedly educated people give their wills and consciences over to mere men rather than looking to God. Apparently there IS such a thing as too much education.

    “experimental hypothesis testing.”

    Since you can’t construct any experiment to prove the theory of evolution, it would follow that it could not be considered science. But the scientific community has decided to just go ahead and call it science because they want to. Not very scientific and not adhering to the very rules you proclaim as necessary to the proof and acceptance of a hypothesis.

    Excuse me for making an observation, but you people talk out of both sides of your faces.

    None of us true, Bible-believing SDAs are impressed.




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  62. calvin: While I believe in freedom of speech, in my opinion much of the content on this site seems reactionary and unsettling. Who’s responsible for this site? I trust that much prayer has gone into this decision . . .

    Calvin, Where have you been over the past two years? Shane Hilde and Sean Pitman are the editors or controllers of this website, as seems to be commonly known.

    Shane has already thrown off Dr. Stone, who was deemed to unsettling for this website. Who else do you want removed?




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  63. calvin: Hello,I am a Seventy-day Adventist who happened to stumble over this site a couple months ago. I have one question. Really, what are you fighting over?Isn’t there a better way to deal with the issues that you (all) seem so torn over?

    Calvin, This site is for Seventh-day Adventists, not Seventy-day Adventists. Maybe that’s why you don’t understand what’s going on?




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  64. @Faith:
    Thank you Faith for illustrating my original point much better than I could ever do.

    I do not judge my beliefs by anything other than the revelation of God in Jesus Christ. I judge my science by the conventions that has been the source of the knowledge of the world that we now possess and enjoy. I do not at all confuse the two.

    I now retreat as would any self respecting Albigensian in the face of such certitude and rightousness indignation lest I suffer their fate.

    Way to go Holly. Calvin, you should be grateful you have been so soundly rebuffed. You will not find any Grace or compassion on this site possessed as it is by an undercurrent of simmering rage.




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  65. @pauluc: Thanks for elaborating on your cryptic post. I disagree that Educate Truth or anyone associated with it is painting with a broad brush, ala “kill them all and let God sort them out.” Shane and Sean have not made a blanket complaint about all the Adventist colleges, only the one that they have personal knowledge about: LaSierra. Likewise, they are not calling for all the professors to be fired (or any, for that matter), just for honesty and transparency about what is being taught. I wouldn’t like to fire everyone either, but I would like to find out which of the professors are Darwinists, and ask them to find, within a reasonable period of time, say two years, somewhere else to pursue their careers.

    You argue that we are defenders of the status quo, but the real status quo is not creationism but Darwinism. A Darwinist can go almost anywhere without being molested. Darwinists control almost all major colleges and universities, museums, foundations, newspapers, media outlets, etc. But there is no “academic freedom” in these places. Anyone who openly advocates for creationism commits immediate career suicide. The fact that there is no tolerance of creationists in almost every worldly academic perch is a good reason why it is important for SDA colleges to be centers for creationist science. At least at our colleges, there should be freedom to pursue origins science within a biblical framework or paradigm. Creationist scientists need safe academic environments; Darwinists already have many thousands of such places.

    You’ve falsely stated that I want to see LaSierra lose its secular accreditation. I do not. But at the same time, I recognize that LaSierra has no real reason to exist if it is merely duplicating the philosophy of education, and in particular, science, that controls hundreds of state universities. LaSierra was established by Adventists to provide education that is Adventist in philosophy and content, not to provide–at far greater expense–what is already being provided by the public university system. I disagree with your conception of a university as being of necessity a place where faith is undermined. If that were true, then there is no reason for Adventists to sponsor universities. But the source of all wisdom and truth is God, and true education does not undermine the Word of God or the Christian faith of the students.

    You’ve argued that accredited colleges are necessary as feeders to Loma Linda, but why is Loma Linda necessary? Loma Linda made sense when the “medical work” was functioning as a missionary arm of the church (I’d say until about 40 years ago). Today, the Adventist hospitals are profit-driven businesses; they do not emphasize even in the slightest degree the lifestyle reforms advocated by Ellen White, but practice conventional, Western, acute care medicine. Eventually, they will be nationalized (shortly after the country figures out that we cannot be economically competitive with countries that spend 10% of GDP on health care while while we lavish 17% going on 20% of GDP on health care). All this is a roundabout way of saying that I reject your argument that we must tolerate Darwinist biology departments in order to have accredited colleges to feed Loma Linda. That argument carries no weight.

    This discussion does highlight a very important distinction between believing Adventists versus cultural Adventists (who make up the vast majority of the Seventh-day Darwinians. To the believing Adventist, what is important is the faith, and the incredibly beautiful way that all the doctrines fit together and support each other. To the cultural Adventist, what is important is the institutions–the schools, colleges, hospitals, conferences and unions–that the faith has spawned, and the jobs and social networks that these institutions provide. To the believing Adventist, the institutions exist to further the mission of the church, which is to maintain, nurture, and spread the faith. To the cultural Adventist, the institutions are paramount, and must be protected even at the cost of severely compromising or even losing the faith. The cultural Adventist and the believing Adventist are never going to see eye to eye, because their value systems are radically different.




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  66. @Holly Pham:

    Thanks for the correction. But based on the tone of your response I suspect this site is not for individuals who would dare type an incorrect letter in “Seventh-day”.

    “Calvin, This site is for Seventh-day Adventists, not Seventy-day Adventists. Maybe that’s why you don’t understand what’s going on?” – Extremely disappointed that you would jump to such a conclusion – very sad day for our church – – – shame on you . . .

    By the way thank you Faith.




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  67. Pauluc: “I do not judge my beliefs by anything other than the revelation of God in Jesus Christ. I judge my science by the conventions that has been the source of the knowledge of the world that we now possess and enjoy. I do not at all confuse the two.”

    Seeing as science was created by God, just how do you presume to separate the two? Science, like every other part of our lives, should include God. You can’t profess to believe in a God that Created the earth when looking at religion and deny the Creator when looking at science. That would be “science-so-called”. True science reflects the Creator.

    You can’t have it both ways–either you believe in the Bible and God as Creator in your science or you don’t believe the Bible and God as Creator in your religion. God does not accept the divided heart.




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  68. Let’s remember that La Sierra is first, and foremost, an accredited university. The church chose to take this route. As such, the standards that are expected of accredited schools are the primary standards the school should seek to uphold.

    Only after the standards expected of Universities are met, do any church standards come into play, and then only to complement those. The same goes for every other church-owned accredited school in the United States, Adventist or not.

    As such, the teachers at any of our schools are first employees of an accredited school of higher knowledge, where it is their duty and obligation to pursue knowledge, wherever it may lead, whether or not it is popular in the school’s constituency.

    If you don’t like this, feel free to advocate that Adventist schools refuse regional accreditation. But if you’re going to do that, feel free to go ahead and argue that they be shut down, since students are not interested in going to non-accredited institutions.




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  69. @Faith:

    Has anyone recommended prayer? People of FAITH where is the “prayer engine” for this site. Who’s praying?

    It sounds as if we’re trying to conquer spiritual battles with weak carnal weapons – namely logical (in some cases illogical) arguments.

    Like this suggestion Hi Holly Pharm?




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  70. calvin: @Faith: Has anyone recommended prayer? People of FAITH where is the “prayer engine” for this site. Who’s praying?It sounds as if we’re trying to conquer spiritual battles with weak carnal weapons – namely logical (in some cases illogical) arguments. Like this suggestion Hi Holly Pharm?

    I was just teasing you Calvin. I make some typing mistakes too. But, I am praying every day for this problem at LSU to be resolved.




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  71. @Faith: Faith, good luck getting pauluc to acknowledge that faith and science must not be separated. I’ve been trying to get Jeffrey Kent to acknowledge that, so far without success.

    I don’t see how any real scientist could deny that science relies upon paradigms, models, theories, working hypotheses, etc., and that when it comes to origins, the theory is that God, if there is a God, had nothing to do with the origins of anything, and that a naturalistic explanation must be thought up for the origins of everything.

    Jeff Kent has insisted that he is a conventionally believing Adventist, and pauluc now seems to be saying the same thing. Now if you really believe that God created the world and its ancestor life forms in six literal days a few thousand years ago, why would you base your science on the assumption that life evolved by chance over the course of 600 million years? If the Adventist origins scenario is truth, why would an Adventist scientist do science as if it were not truth?

    Put another way, if a person is in Los Angeles, and really believes that the way to go to Santa Barbara is to take the 101 to the west, why would the person go east on the 10? We are entitled to conclude that either, a) the person doesn’t really believe that the 101 is the way to Santa Barbara, or b) the person is not really even trying to go to Santa Barbara. Likewise we are entitled to conclude of an Adventist scientist who does mainstream origins science that either, a) he doesn’t really believe in the Adventist origins scenario, or b) he is not really trying to do science to discover truth; he’s just going along with the herd of his peers, going along to get along, trying to not to make waves, just trying to make a living.




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  72. Calvin:

    I agree with Holly, there are very many of us on this site who have kept this subject in our prayers for at least two years. However, that doesn’t mean we have to sit and be quiet when Satan is attacking our institutions and our young people. You may or may not know this, but this situation has been going on for decades while everyone kept quiet and waited for the powers-that-be to deal with it and, obviously, nothing was done. This site is responsible for bringing this to the attention of the membership at large and I thank God for it.

    And, Calvin, as far as typos go, if you look in the archives there a lot of them. Don’t feel bad. We have all done it…including Holly–probably why she felt she could tease you. We tend to be a brother/sisterhood here. Welcome.




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  73. Faith:

    Blessings to you and yours. Fight the good fight and keep the Faith

    – Hi Holly Pha’r’m (Typo . . . . ooooops, I’m in trouble again)




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  74. David: “Likewise we are entitled to conclude of an Adventist scientist who does mainstream origins science that either, a) he doesn’t really believe in the Adventist origins scenario, or b) he’s not doing science to discover truth; he’s just going along with the herd of his peers, going along to get along.”

    As usual, David, you are right on the money.

    Considering all the importance that Pauluc seems to place on his peers and how he discounts Creation, I would say “a” and “b” for most TEs is a safe bet.

    As I have said before on this site, all the arguing hasn’t budged one person in their beliefs–evolutionists stay evolutionists and Creationists stay Creationists. I think that is because anyone posting is trying to stick up for what they believe in. The only difference is that the Creationists are right–we have the backing of God’s own Truth. Pauluc and friends, poor things, only have other very fallible men who have sold out all their belief in truth to back them up.




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  75. Adventist kid: Let’s remember that La Sierra is first, and foremost, an accredited university. The church chose to take this route. As such, the standards that are expected of accredited schools are the primary standards the school should seek to uphold.

    Let us “wildly imagine” for a sec that the Adventist denomination decide to cut loose LSU from its role in owning and operating LSU and set it adrift to be the best possible pubulic university that Adventist tuition, tithe, offering and gift dollars could buy. No more worries about the school actually training for and representing the SDA world view.

    Now LSU’s new “masters” are the public university overlords, public opinion polls, whatever the latest storytelling is among evolutionists – et al to use and do with as they please.

    Suppose our ownly goal was to provide those entities with the best possible university campus to do with as they pleased.

    Well then EducateTruth would be focussing all of its time on the SDA adminstrators that blindly chose such a path and not only the school that would now be cut loose from SDA management and oversight.

    And while that alternate reality came may be fun for some people to buy (those who wish to see our schools divorced from the church that created them) not everyone here is going to enjoy or buy that form of alternate reality.

    Revisionist histories being what they are.

    in Christ,

    Bob




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  76. Adventist Kid: “Let’s remember that La Sierra is first, and foremost, an accredited university. The church chose to take this route. As such, the standards that are expected of accredited schools are the primary standards the school should seek to uphold.”

    Yet another fairy tale. La Sierra is supposed to be first and foremost an SDA institution. A place where SDA youth can go to be educated without being pumped full of evolution. You can argue all this stuff till the cows come home, but where it counts is in heaven. There La Sierra, its administrators, board members, and professors are going to be held to account. There they will fool no one with their slick jargon and ridiculous “scientific” arguments.




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  77. pauluc: 4] You say “Anyone who believes in evolution in any form is greatly deceived”. This conclusion I presume is based on deep understanding of the science in this field or are you merely a reflector of other men’s thoughts? It is very easy to dismiss something of which you have no knowledge. If you do want to understand for yourself I would suggest you start by reading a book by a fine Christian gentleman David Young called “Discovering evolution” that gives the historical context for the study of the origin of species in the early 19th century.

    Why not just go to the source? Why dance around like that if you want the history?

    What did DARWIN say about evolution?

    But I had gradually come by this time, i.e. 1836 to 1839, to see that the Old Testament was no more to be trusted than the sacred books of the Hindus….

    By further reflecting… that the more we know of the fixed laws of nature the more incredible do miracle become, – that the men of the time were ignorant and credulous to a degree almost incomprehensible to us,- that the Gospels cannot be proved to have been written simultaneously with the events,- that they differ in many important details…

    I gradually came to disbelieve in Christianity as a divine revelation…. But I was very unwilling to give up my belief; I feel sure of this, for I can well remember often and often inventing day-dreams of old letters between distinguished Romans… which confirmed in the most striking manner all that was written in the Gospels. But I found it more and more difficult, with free scope given to my imagination, to invent evidence which would suffice to convince me. Thus disbelief crept over me at a very slow rate but was at last complete. The rate was so slow that I felt no distress, and have never doubted even for a single second that my conclusion was correct.


    Darwin (1887) I p. 308 & [Barlow (1958)].




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  78. pauluc: 5] I do not fault you in wanting to limit academic freedom in Adventist schools but I do ask you to recognize that you cannot have an accredited university and so do.

    We should allow the accademic freedom to engage in actual science – but forbid the storytelling and junk-religion that goes into the junk-science called evolution.

    Collin Patterson – Paleontologist British Museum of Natural history – said:

    Patterson – quotes Gillespie’s arguing that Christians
    “‘…holding creationist ideas could plead ignorance of the means and affirm only the fact,'”

    Patterson countered, “That seems to summarize the feeling I get in talking to evolutionists today. They plead ignorance of the means of transformation, but affirm only the fact: ‘Yes it has…we know it has taken place.'”

    “…Now I think that many people in this room would acknowledge that during the last few years, if you had thought about it at all, you’ve experienced a shift from evolution as knowledge to evolution as faith. I know that’s true of me, and I think it’s true of a good many of you in here…

    “…,strong>Evolution not only conveys no knowledge, but seems somehow to convey anti-knowledge , apparent knowledge which is actually harmful to systematics…”

    in Christ,

    Bob




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  79. There is a storyline being fabricated here promoting the idea that our colleges were never accredited. The story seems to demand that we imagine that only our Universities are accredited. We are told that once we submit to accreditation – then we must renounce the mission that we gave the colleges to start with – cutting them loose to serve at the dictates of popular worldly opinion regarding birds coming from reptiles and who knows what else.

    Question: – who is really buying their line of storytelling on those points?

    in Christ,

    Bob




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  80. I think most of us understand the final goal of Satan is to discredit the bible. He can no longer take it away physically. There are too many in print for that.

    Thus, his alternate plan is to undermine its teaching and authority by denying its validity.

    One of his most effective ploys is to claim it is too ambiguous and non-definable to conclude non-negotiable facts. So everything is subject to some new understanding that is superior to any historical conclusions.

    What the liberals would call “new light”. And/or progressive enlightenment. While we as bible believing Christians are aware of “new light” being possible and even likely, we are also convinced that any “new light” will not attack and/or contradict basic bible truth that has been clearly established by the bible itself.

    Any “new light” must necessarily fit the flow of the whole biblical revelation.

    As the first coming of Jesus was eventually understood by His followers in a scriptural context, and proved and supported by the same, even so, any “new light” about the second coming must follow this same norm.

    We are also aware that Satan will impersonate Jesus and His second coming before the true and real event. With the purpose of creating a “new world order” that fits his own kingdom principles in opposition to God’s kingdom.

    This he can not do without first undermining the bible and placing its teaching and influence in a vague and obscure light. Evolution has worked well to help him in his final goal.

    But we must be aware that his final thrust is even more subtle than a blatant attack on creation. He is master of creating a diversionary problem and then solving it by his own false spiritual principles that are more subtle.

    In this way, the true antichrist (Satan) supposedly exposes the false antichrist and the people readily follow him as some spiritually mature “savior” who has saved them from a delusion and a deception.

    His final goal is to overthrow and undermine the bible Sabbath. We have yet to see his final principles put in place, but we have clearly seen how easily many have already been deceived, even in the SDA church. If God cleanses the church, then we should be prepared for a mass exodus with no surprise that so many would leave the SDA faith.

    And if you don’t see the very spirit of the celebration movement is a godless antichrist movement, embraced and endorsed by modern Adventism, it is not likely you will see it in the future.

    Ultimately, what are they celebrating? They are celebrating the idea that the law was done away at the cross. Do you see that? If not, you would do well to carefully consider the implications of what is being taught and said. Hopefully, more church members in the near future will see this reality and demand a more dynamic accountability of themselves individually, and the church corporately.

    If not, as I have said many times, the final result is a failure of the SDA church to fulfill God’s message and mission for the church.

    Keep the faith

    Bill Sorensen




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  81. @David Read:
    Thank you for your articulate response to my post.

    On many things I think we agree entirely. If as it appears the GC wish to be consistent with their current theological views then it has little option but to remove its educational medical institutions from the influence of modern evidence based medicine and external academic accreditation.

    This is the only position that is consistent with an understanding of the inerrancy of both EG White and the Bible that underpins the world view of historical Adventism, a position that seems to be accepted by you and people like Faith.

    Your minimalist solution seems to be to try to keep the University and the external academic accreditation and carefully and surgically remove any dissident voices from the university, muffled though they may be.

    Though I agree this is a laudable goal I am much less sanguine and accept that such measures cut to the core of the idea of a university and will be viewed with cynicism by external accreditation bodies. But you are a lawyer and know the difference between what is legally possible compared to what is sincere.

    As you appreciate LLU and medical schools are now hotbeds of “liberal” thought and this I believe is absolutely related to the scientific world view that has given us the cargo of modern society and modern medicine, but this is a faustian bargain and asks us in return to live by evidence not by tradition. I think this cannot help but erode the idea that we must accept “God said it I believe it without”without in some way scrutinizing the basis for this as Sean has repeatedly asserted in his polemic against blind faith. I think you only have to look back at the history of Creation science since the time of Darwin and Wallace as chronicled by the books of Ron Numbers [The Creationists, see particularly the history of the ASA] to see that education is mostly the enemy rather than the ally of fundamentalism. Even EGW was stung by this in the person of JHK. What happened to the GRI under Ritland? On the evidence it is clearly better not to encourage young men and women into science or academic enquiry for there lies great risks as Faith has correctly articulated above. The church fundamental would clearly be better off without modern institutions of higher learning.

    I think you vastly overestimate the cogency of creation science as hypothesis driven science. The basic premise or origin of species by divine fiat was discarded some 150 years ago with natural explanations of natural selection. But I do suggest that as Leonard Brand et al have done you can as a creationist publish in the scientific literature on issues directly related to origins but the expectation is that you will try to provide an explanation without invoking miracles to hide a lack of explanation. The absence of evidence for an hypothesis however is not evidence for the alternative which is unfortunately the way creation science is mostly practiced.

    I have never argued that you must be forced to tolerate “Darwinist” biology departments, whatever that may be, because of a need to teach modern medicine. What I am arguing that if you want to allow teaching of conventional science in any form which is predicated on explanations of physical reality without resort to the supernatural then you have to allow for the possibility that there will also be natural explanations of origins. There is no free lunch. You cannot dictate truth and allow search for knowledge in an accredited University. You are welcome to remove all science from Adventist colleges but I do think it is capricious to exclude scientific explanations of origins without at the same time excluding scientific explanations for mechanics, planetary motion, quantum physics,astronomy and cosmology all of which have historically enjoyed supernatural explanation.

    I do think your classification of Christians into believing or cultural based only on whether their views agree with yours lacks objectivity and rigour. Can you really know the heart and the commitment to God? Who really believes? Those will a simple understanding and no knowledge of the problems and counter arguments to their belief or the one who in the face of vast knowledge of the deficiencies in their understanding and the strength of the arguments against their position nonetheless accept the Grace of God and claims the name of Christian?

    In summary I agree that a sectarian church does not benefit from wider understanding or expanding knowledge and that it should jettison the dangerous baggage of modern naturalistic medicine and the science that goes with it. The blueprint articulated in the 19th century writing of EG White is more than adequate [And I would concur has substantial benefit as Fraser and other have shown] and if perchance we suffer an acute coronary event we can simply benefit from the drug eluting stent generated by the infidels without muddying our hands with the details.
    We could of course be consistent with the 1864 vision and practice the water treatment when we get community pneumonia with MRSA. Accepting our fate like Esther we could say if I perish, I but in my experience fear of premature death trumps religious principle every time and we readily accommodate ICU admission, ventilators and Tigecycline therapy without considering it a denial of faith. Only then are we grateful for those who question and search for the new and better, people who we might denigrate as cultural Adventists.

    When I read of EG White burying her own children who died of treatable infectious diseases I cannot help but think she would be proud of an LSU and LLU that seeks to practice the love of God in a practical way and accepting with equanimity the collateral of the difficult questions associated with naturalistic explanation of origins.
    I do not at see her viewing with approbation the sentiment of Arnaud Amalric that would accept the collateral damage to the innocent inherent in out practice of Truth at all cost.




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  82. I believe that based on all the evidence actually available in nature – the storytelling about birds come from reptiles is total fiction and so we need not worry about running away from “evidence based medicine”.

    It is only in the myth and fiction ladened mind of evoluitonists that “evidence based medicine” is hog tied to fiction about “birds coming from reptiles” so only in their minds would you have to give up medicine if you thought birds actually come from birds.

    Oh well free will being what it is – we see the T.E.s making choices and the dark and can only offer them the hints and clues they will accept of their own free will.

    in Christ,

    Bob




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  83. Bill Sorensen: I think most of us understand the final goal of Satan is to discredit the bible. He can no longer take it away physically. There are too many in print for that.
    Thus, his alternate plan is to undermine its teaching and authority by denying its validity.

    That is true – since the end of the dark ages that has been his new strategy.

    in Christ,

    Bob




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  84. @pauluc: pauluc, your sarcasm and unsubtle attempts to attribute to me what I did not say diminish the joy of dialoging with you.

    I do not think there is anything inconsistent with plenary biblical belief in the teaching, studying or practicing of medicine. The incredible design of the human body testify that its designer possessed a genius far beyond mere human capacity. And the plethora of diseases and injuries that the body is subject to testify that an enemy has also been at work in the creation.

    In general, Western science has largely been the product of Christian men, who were typically also creationists. They had faith that the universe would be intelligible and work according to logical, understandable laws and principles, because such qualities were associated with the Creator-God they knew from the Bible. Now science seeks to separate nature from nature’s Creator, but the very principles that ensured that the creation would be intelligible and work according to ascertainable laws also demand that it had a creator. There is no free lunch.

    I think you vastly underestimate the extent to which mainstream origins science is warped by its rigid adherence to naturalism. The basic premise of abiogenesis, or life from non-life, was discarded some 150 years ago after conclusive experimentation and observation by Pasteur and several others; as the decades have passed, and we have learned more about the complexity and genius of life at the cellular level, the hypothesis of accidental self-organization has become even more absurd and anti-rational. It remains part of mainstream origins science only because of the warping effect of the rigid control of philosophical naturalism over origins science (yes, I know the difference between methodological and philosophical naturalism, and there is no difference when it comes to origins).

    To the extent that “education” is a threat to the church, it is only because modern origins science insists on telling only one side of the story, and effectively indoctrinating Darwinism, which is the new orthodoxy from which no deviation is permitted. This merely highlights the need to make Adventist colleges become centers for creation science and Christian origins apologetics. Having an “Adventist” college where the professors indoctrinate Darwinism is simply corporate suicide on the part of the SDA Church. It is saying, “hurry up and kill me, already!”




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  85. @Faith: With more hope than expectation I will try to respond.
    1] Do you believe that God is physically moving the electrons in your computer as you write your response. Do you think the behaviour of the semiconductors and electronic components in your computer and the channels that are modern telecommunications are explicable by natural law? Do you believe in atomic physics and quantum theory as adequate explanations of the reality that underlies these physical structures.

    2] I would answer yes to the last question because I believe as John Lennox,Alistair McGrath, John Haught and other modern critics of the new atheists have well articulated that we live in an intelligible universe subject to nature law. A universe that shows features consistent with the anthropic principle. At this point my faith in God does give the basis for my science.

    3] I do accept that God is constrained by this ordered universe in the same way as he is constrained to act by the principles of his Kingdom as an incarnate God. A God that as described in Phillipians 2:1-11 made himself a suffering servant. In accepting the kenosis of God in the person of Jesus Christ I can see a new perspective on Gods creative act.

    4] I believe as the 28 fundamentals indicate that the bible is inspired and authoritative for instruction in righteousness but is not verbally inspired. I do not accept the peculiar perspective articulated in the “Fundamentals” published from the 1920s that the bible is verbally inspired and infallible in all areas of life history and science. I do not accept this of the writings of EG White though I consider her inspired of God.

    5] I believe that the process of open inquiry and peer review that is the basis of science is God given and that we can understand much of the physical universe by this process but this is not at all the basis of knowledge of God. I reject Sean Pitmans scientific evidences for God and like Karl Barth and Dietrich Bonhoeffer I think natural theology is largely a senseless exercise. The revelation of God is Jesus Christ and is just that a revelation and comes through the account of His life in the Bible and through the witness of the community of faith.

    You can believe this is joyless existence but I have not found it so during these last 40 years as a disciple of Christ. Whatever the new and exciting observations or discovery I may make I remain secure in my life in Christ. I do not foolishly brag that I will reject the Adventist tradition if it is found that there is overwhelming evidence of antiquity of life or of direct genetic relationships between man and higher apes is found. Nor do I suggest that I can comprehend the breadth of all science so that I can confidently reject the work of thousand of honest scientists that may conflict with my prejudices or presuppositions.




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  86. Calvin, our prophetic movement was started by God. He led our pioneers to Bible truths that had been hidden for a long time or undiscovered. Our spiritual forefathers (and mothers) studied and prayed to bring those truths to us. There was much sacrifice. The Fundamental Beliefs that we have today are the end result of those long hours of study and prayer. These beliefs were given to us as a gift from God to help us have healthy, happy lives and relationships. We are supposed to use these beliefs to evangelize the world.

    This site exists because church employees in our universities (yes, plural) are undermining our Fundamental Beliefs, teaching error, and causing young people to lose their faith, all the while they are being paid with our church’s hard earned money.

    No, there is not a better way to deal with this. We have spineless administrators who are afraid to stand up against wrong, and who white wash problems or sweep things under the rug. Or they are sympathetic and are helping to tear down our beliefs. Yes, there are a few Daniels, but not enough.




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  87. @David Read: Sorry if I have imputed to you views that you do not hold.

    I have only one major question. Please give me one area of science in which methodological naturalism is not accepted as normative.

    Why do you want an exception for origins? I am not sure that you fully appreciate the sentiment of the 19th century natural scientist and the attraction of natural selection as a mechanism that would finally place biology on a similar footing to all other areas of science with reliance on natural explanation and lack of recourse to the miraculous.

    I am surprised that you cannot see that modern evidence based medicine does not resort at all to miraculous explanations and that in this it is reflective of the nature of all science including the study of the origins of species. It is quite arbitrary to accept wholesale natural explanation in medicine but not in speciation and certainly makes a mockery of presumed similar standards of exegesis for genesis 1 and Matt 17.

    As a Christian I reject entirely the premise of philosophical naturalism but I hold as a foundation of science methodological naturalism.

    Argument about abiogenesis is moot as no-one has any explanation. But as I said before no evidence for abiogensis does not provides any evidence for miraculous creation of life.




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  88. @Adventist kid:

    I suggest, Sir, that you study the background of SDA education and the history of how these schools got started.

    If you indeed attended an SDA school, then count your testimonies as exhibit #1 as to why we need reform.




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