Clifford Goldstein: ‘A Safe Place’

Educate Truth shares the following article from The Adventist Review as a service to readers.

Cliff Goldstein

As I have said numerous times: Adventism and evolution are mutually exclusive. If one is true, the other is false. Ergo, you can be an Adventist or an evolutionist, but not both. Our name, Seventh-day Adventist, implies a rejection of any creation story that’s premised not on the six days before the seventh but on eons of evolutionary hell. Honesty demands that those who call themselves Seventh-day Adventist ought to at least believe in what the name they claim stands for. 

Because I’ve taken this unyielding position on what’s an unyieldable position, I’ve been accused—both in the flesh and in the fleshly androgyny of cyberspace—of advocating that anyone who believes in evolution ought to be thrown out of the church.

That’s false. What I’ve said is that it’s hard to see how anyone who believes in evolution would want to be in this church. Nothing Adventist makes sense with the neo-Darwinian synthesis as backdrop. To paraphrase a fundamentalist atheist, evolution is an acid that erodes everything it touches. That would include the three angels’ messages of Revelation 14, which have the central theme of creation and redemption, two truths nullified by evolution, even a “theistic” kind. (Who’d want to worship a theos who created like that, anyway?)

To reiterate: be a Seventh-day Adventist or be an evolutionist, but let’s end the charade of thinking one can be both.  (Read more)

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56 thoughts on “Clifford Goldstein: ‘A Safe Place’

  1. I am in full agreement with my friend Cliff. The SDA Church should be a safe place for members who are struggling with evolutionary concepts and other theological issues to be able to ask and work through difficult questions without being judged on a moral basis or excluded from the Church community.

    At the same time, as Cliff points out, our Church also needs to “be a safe place for our students.” It is indeed “heart-wrenching to think that, on occasion, young people in our Seventh-day Adventist colleges face teachers who, though professing to be Seventh-day Adventists, hold a view on evolution that nullifies that profession.”

    So, while it is fine to have struggles over the meaning of mainstream science vs. the Biblical worldview, it is not fine to publicly promote, while on the payroll of the Church, various views on mainstream science that directly undermine the stated fundamental goals and ideals of the Church. Such activity is not a sign of a personal struggle, but of a dishonest struggle against the order and government of the SDA Church as an organization (i.e., in thinking to get paid while undermining what one was hired to do).

    Sean Pitman
    http://www.DetectingDesign.com




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  2. Cliff Golstein is one of the few SDA leaders who knows how to “tell it like it truly is” with “no-holds barred” honesty. He is “trashed” by progressives because if this, in many ways, as he mentions himself.

    If we only had dozens or even hundreds of actual bible-believing leaders like him! [edit]




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  3. Adventism and evolution are mutually exclusive.

    Darwin, Dawkins, Provine and Meyers would argue that Christianity itself and belief in evolutionism are mututally exclusive.

    3SG 90-91 appears to agree with them on that point.

    Whereas Romans 1 argues that even pagans are without excuse if they choose to ignore the intelligent design evidence in Nature that reveals the infinite power of God and in fact the Godhead.

    in Christ,

    Bob




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  4. Just as a side note, Cliff also takes the same view of those who deny 1844 and the Investigative Judgment.

    We could wish all our leaders would be as definitive as Cliff is on these issues and demand some accountability in harmony with the biblical norm to deal with these issues.

    Bill Sorensen




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  5. Clifford Goldstein wrote:

    I understand, too, that the world that science studies today is not the same as the original creation; instead, it suffers from the “double curse” (as Ellen White called it) of Adam’s and Cain’s sin, as well as massive water damage, i.e., the Flood. Therefore, what is can easily lead even the most astute observer astray about what was. Thus it isn’t hard to sympathize with those who are confronted with scientific “facts” that contradict all they have believed. We have to be sensitive to their struggles; we have to affirm them in their search; and we have to create an environment in which they can, without being judged or condemned, ask questions as they work through these issues.

    Cliff obviously agrees with many of the arguments set forth by Educate Truth, but he certainly disagrees on Educate Truth’s position to “follow the evidence” rather than God’s word when they disagree.




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  6. Bill Sorensen: Just as a side note, Cliff also takes the same view of those who deny 1844 and the Investigative Judgment.We could wish all our leaders would be as definitive as Cliff is on these issues and demand some accountability in harmony with the biblical norm to deal with these issues.Bill Sorensen

    You’re absolutely correct in your wish that we actually could depend on our leaders out here in California to be as truthful and honest about where they stand.

    How about getting Wisbey, Caviness, Pedersen and Graham to “weigh in” on their beliefs, without giving us some “roundabout” vague monologue about how they believe in “the big tent” approach to leadership in our SDA Church.




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  7. It has been a little difficult to understand and define exactly what Sean and/or Shane mean by “evidence”.

    I certainly have no problem with the idea of evidence as it pretains to scripture and a scriptural norm for its explanation.

    We could ask according to the bible, “Is Jesus God?”

    And we have abundant “evidence” of the fact that He is according to scriptural “evidence”. Jesus declares Himself to be God. He raises the dead. He forgives sin and many other “evidences” are stated in the bible.

    John and the other apostles affirms that Jesus is also the creator. The scriptures affirm many things and then gives evidence of the reality.

    When the bible states, “The heavens declare the glory of God……”, it is affirming itself and other scriptural declarations concerning God and His relationship to man.

    It does not suggest we can “prove” God created by way of nature. Even the complexity of nature does not prove God created it. Neither does it prove the God of the bible created.

    As I have stated in the past, the real dynamic “evidence” of the validity of the bible is bible prophecy. As bible prophecy is validated by the historical process, we gain confidence of all its other declarations. Namely, the God who can accurately predict the future is also the God who created all things. Why? Because He said so.

    In the end, there are a number of reasons why God has gone to great length to affirm His identity and authority in the bible. Perhaps the most important to us is His affirmation that He has the authority to forgive our sins based on a solid justifiable reason. Not simply because He is a “good guy” who will not hold us accountable for our sin. NO. NO.

    There is a “just” cause and the new testament affirms it continually. Notice especially Johns account.

    “If we confess our sin, He is faithful and JUST to forgive us our sins.”

    This is no small issue. The new testament writers know that the law demands justice and there must be a just cause for forgiveness. Again and again they point to the death and atonement of Christ as that “just” cause whereby God can forgive in a righteous manor that does not bypass the principles of justice in His kingdom.

    The creator God who demands a complete accountability of all His moral beings can not simply by-pass sin, but must have a clear and solid basis to forgive sin. That is, justice must be served, before God can forgive. But this is only one factor in the totality of redemption and restoration.

    Sinful man must also return to loyalty to God and affirm the loyalty by obedience to the divine will.

    God presents and creates His own “evidence” of His divine authority and creatorship and shows how and why He can forgive sin without compromising His justice.

    Nature in and of itself is very superficial evidence and gives us little solid information to base our faith on and in the bible. The biblical account shows us that God transcends nature again and again. Every miracle defies nature.

    How then can you use nature to “prove” that the biblical God is the creator? That God works outside of nature is a more reliable “proof” of His self affirming authority. He brings a flood. He stills the storm. He raises the dead. Nature allows for none of these events.

    And last of all, and perhaps the most single important factor about nature, it reveals no “first cause” for its existence and how it operates. Total silence in this area. Not a single clue.

    We must turn to scripture to find the answer and scripture proves itself. God explains it in His word. Or, as EGW has well said, “The only religion that leads to God is the one that comes from God.”

    Nature by itself can never reveal the true God. Every heathen religion affirms this reality over and over.

    Every culture from Eden to today has some knowledge of the true God by way of oral tradition. But in heathen countries and cultures, it has been obscured and perverted so that very few discern the truth without the testimony of scripture.

    These few exceptions who discern an adequate knowledge of the true God and will be saved are by no means the scriptural norm. They are a rare few. Thus, we send missionaries with bible knowledge to open the eyes of the heathen to a revelation of God they can not discern by way of natural law.

    Bill Sorensen




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  8. It appears that the opening statement from the article is being affirmed by some members of this board.

    As I have said numerous times: Adventism and evolution are mutually exclusive. If one is true, the other is false.

    While others are trying to find ways to imagine that having a factless Bible would be just fine.

    As pointed out in other posts – IF we had such a “tiny Bible” that it made NO claims about what “happened in nature” and only made claims about “Love God with all your heart and your neighbor as yourself” then as many point out – it would be just fine to try and marry belief in evolutionism to acceptance of the Bible.

    in Christ,

    Bob




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  9. How did we get ourselves distracted in this discussion of does the natural world “prove” God exists? This will never be resolved, since each has his/her own opinion of what “proof” exists and how we interpret that “proof.”

    How about sticking to the topic, which Shane constantly reminds me about, which is why we have an SDA institution teaching “evolution as truth” and what should be done about it!

    Isn’t this WHY this website exists?




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  10. I agree. In the end we (the Seventh-day Adventist Church) believe that God created the heaven and earth in six days in the recent past.

    La Sierra biology professors deny this and taught theories contrary to it as fact, while suppressing the evidence that confirms what we alread know to be true from the Bible.

    One reason why they deny the biblical account is because the Bible is no longer the ultimate authority. Their world view is not being governed by the Word of God.




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  11. BobRyan,

    You contribute in quite a number of places. I noticed your edits on wikipedia. May I suggest that you go read the responses of others to your verbose essays on that site?

    Young Earth Creationism is unscientific. That is all there is to it. So either Adventism and Science are mutually exclusive (that can’t be!) or we can both believe in Science (evolution), and the bible while being Adventist. I take the second option.




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  12. Adventist kid,

    You need to define what type of science you’re referring to. Origin science or operation science? I would assume since we’re speaking of origins that you woud be speaking of origin science, which uses different methods of determining what happened in the past. Origin science relies on relics from the past and historical records to try to discover truth.

    The debate about origins is not about operation science, which is based in the present. The debate is about origin science and conflicting assumptions, or beliefs, about the past.

    Perhaps you don’t understand the problem with saying “evolution is science, but the Bible is religion.” Molecules-to-man evolution is not proven by operation science; instead, it is a belief about the past based on antibiblical assumptions.

    Creationists and evolutionists accept and use the same methods of research in both origin and operation science. The different conclusions about origins arise from different starting assumptions, not the research methods themselves.

    So this isn’t about religion vs. science, but conflicting worldviews.

    The revelation of nature is in harmony with divine revelation; however, our interpretation of nature must be guided by divine revaltion.




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  13. To my knowledge, nothing that evolutionary theory claims about origins has been observed today. Evolutionary biologists are merely interpreting the data based on their antibiblical presuppositions.




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  14. Adventist kid: BobRyan,You contribute in quite a number of places. I noticed your edits on wikipedia. May I suggest that you go read the responses of others to your verbose essays on that site?Young Earth Creationism is unscientific. That is all there is to it. So either Adventism and Science are mutually exclusive (that can’t be!) or we can both believe in Science (evolution), and the bible while being Adventist. I take the second option.

    According to Darwin – belief in evolutionism is totally inconsistent with belief in the Bible.

    According to Dawkins, Meyers and Provine — all in on-camera interviews – belief in evolution destroyed their faith in God.

    According to Seventh-day Adventist sources like 3SG90-91 Evolution undermines the Christian religion.

    According to most of the Christians on this web site and at most of our own Universities in both science and religion departments – the evolutionist religion is totally inconsistent with Christianity itself.

    There is a small fringe group inside the SDA church trying to make the case for marrying evolutionism to the Bible – and their agenda is most notably at work at LSU.

    In your post you “claim” that you have a way to marry evolutionism to the Bible – but then you do not show it.

    I suggest less smoke – more fire (as in substance presented to support the claims made).

    in Christ,

    Bob




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  15. Shane Hilde: To my knowledge, nothing that evolutionary theory claims about origins has been observed today. Evolutionary biologists are merely interpreting the data based on their antibiblical presuppositions.

    I believe you are correct, Shane. The “origin” of life from nonlife cannot be seen or reproduced. We do not see significant changes in living organisms other than variations of innate genetic patterns–bigger, smaller, wider, different colors, etc

    The fossil record does not support Darwinian mechanisms for evolutionary change. The long-awaited “missing links” have not appeared.

    Mathematically, there is not enough time in the entire “history” of even what evolutionists say is the age of the world to account for the types of changes necessary for the variations of life to have “evolved.”

    So, what DO we have? Nothing but pure speculation, theorization, and faith-based philosophy.




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  16. Shane Hilde: To my knowledge, nothing that evolutionary theory claims about origins has been observed today. Evolutionary biologists are merely interpreting the data based on their antibiblical presuppositions.

    True. Another way to phrase it is that the salient points for the case for evolution are being assumed rather than proven.

    At the core they need to “show” that a given group genome actually “Acquires” new coding genes, adds new features and results in a new group-level-genome that represents a step up the taxonomic ladder of complexity.

    As Dawkin’s 11 seconds of flummoxed silence demonstrates – (when asked to provide even one single real life example demonstrating that claim to be true) — the case for evolution fails at the level of first prinicples.

    in Christ,

    Bob




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  17. I would much rather send my student to a public university that had evolutionist devotees as professors evangelizing for belief in evolutionism than to an SDA university with compromised SDA professors doing the same thing.

    The SDA profs in that case would not only be trying to argue them out of accepting the doctrines of the SDA church – they would be models and examples of just how to do it as a respected SDA thought leader.

    Cliff said

    What I’ve said is that it’s hard to see how anyone who believes in evolution would want to be in this church. Nothing Adventist makes sense with the neo-Darwinian synthesis as backdrop. To paraphrase a fundamentalist atheist, evolution is an acid that erodes everything it touches. That would include the three angels’ messages of Revelation 14

    When a student is bombarded with the sacrifice-all-for-evolution message at our school what is the “incentive” to remain SDA?

    Here are a few motivators for staying in the church.

    1. Come join us and our fellow evolutionists in our mission to compromise this entire denomination. Be a leader in telling your friends and family that the Bible cannot be trusted.

    2. Follow our example of wanting to stay with SDA culture and friends no matter your differences with SDA doctrine.

    3. “Vote for us” and “show loyalty” to your professors and your school by staying with us and increasing our numbers. After all don’t you see the “unneducated bad guys” out there who reject belief in evolution. We need you.

    Contrast that with the motivation those students were supposed to have prior to
    being confronted by SDA evolutionist professors.

    1. Be better equipped to serve God in promoting the 3 Angels messages.

    2. Advance your education in a way that is consistent with those who also want to be on fire with belief that the Bible is trustworthy, that Christ is coming soon, that the world needs to be evangelized and reconciled to a real loving God and a trustworthy text of scripture.

    3. Learn to understand, defend and promote the message God has given the Seventh-day Adventist church as you complete whatever degree you are pursuing.

    But when they learn that God is the evolutionist-god who “creates” by the method of tooth-and-claw, disease, death, starvation, extinction, survival of the fittest… and no well reasoned message at all regarding the fall man they are left with nothing.

    There is no way to argue that any sane person would value such a creator’s “paradise of death”. The very foundations are removed.

    in Christ,

    Bob




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  18. Bob, I was educated in a California State university in the 70’s. I majored in Zoology, and I actually had very little problem with profs trying to stuff evolution as fact down my throat.

    Sure, they taught the stuff, but were actually, in general, very open to the idea that they and others didn’t know much about how it actually worked, and tended to be actually relatively non-dogmatic in their statements.




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  19. Bill Sorensen: Just as a side note, Cliff also takes the same view of those who deny 1844 and the Investigative Judgment.We could wish all our leaders would be as definitive as Cliff is on these issues and demand some accountability in harmony with the biblical norm to deal with these issues.Bill Sorensen

    Accountability is sadly lacking out here in SDA California. When you ask leaders to actually be accountable, they act like they never heard of the concept!




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  20. Ron Stone M.D.: Bob, I was educated in a California State university in the 70′s. I majored in Zoology, and I actually had very little problem with profs trying to stuff evolution as fact down my throat.
    Sure, they taught the stuff, but were actually, in general, very open to the idea that they and others didn’t know much about how it actually worked, and tended to be actually relatively non-dogmatic in their statements.

    Ron — that is good to hear.

    The public university I graduated from tried to shove evolution into every crack and corner in my electives — but in the core Physics, Math and Comp Sci classes they just stuck with actual science.

    in Christ,

    Bob




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  21. Adventist kid: BobRyan,You contribute in quite a number of places. I noticed your edits on wikipedia. May I suggest that you go read the responses of others to your verbose essays on that site?Young Earth Creationism is unscientific. That is all there is to it. So either Adventism and Science are mutually exclusive (that can’t be!) or we can both believe in Science (evolution), and the bible while being Adventist. I take the second option.

    Could you share the wikipedia link with us if possible, thanks.




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  22. I too would like to know – just where Adventist Kid thinks that YEC has been disproven or debunked especially as it relates to any of my work over at wikipedia.

    What is more likely the case is that there are some evolutionist contributors at wiki that are “edit warring” in efforts to hide inconvenient details from readers – and I am simply pointing out some of those instances.

    Here again – objective critical thinking would be helpful as opposed to an “in the tank for evolutionism” sacrifice-all model.

    in Christ,

    Bob




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  23. I agree with Elder Goldstein that an Adventist university should be a safe place for our students. I suggest that our universities adopt and implement a rigorous screening process to determine which students should be allowed to study science and which students should not be admitted to class.

    The screening process should include the following elements:

    1. The university should make full disclosure of what is taught. The university should fully disclose that mainstream science is taught and accorded factual validity to the degree warranted by the natural evidence. In addition, full disclosure should be made regarding what science is, what mainstream science is, what the scientific method is, and what the differences are between science and theology/philosophy. The student should be warned that there are some Adventists who find the teaching of evolution in science class to be offensive. The disclosures should be comprehensive and exhaustive, so that no admitted student is surprised or upset. If the prospective student does not evidence a thorough understanding of these disclosures, he or she should not be admitted to class.

    2. The student should be required to pass a biblical hermeneutics examination that demonstrates that he or she understands the relationship between the Bible and external data. The student should know that for Seventh-day Adventists science has no relevance in determining how the sacred text is interpreted or regarded. If the student lacks a cognitive and experiential understanding and affirmation of the historical-grammatical hermeneutic that rejects criticism of the sacred text, he or she should not be admitted to class.

    3. The student should submit to an interview. If the student appears to lack emotional stability or the intellectual ability to compartmentalize and bear with tension between contradictory ideas, he or she should not be admitted to class. A psychological instrument could also be implemented to test the student to assess his or her suitability for the class.

    Elder Goldstein’s concerns should be taken seriously. Not every student who wants to study science should be allowed to study science in an Adventist university. Not every student possess the requisite spiritual maturity to study science.

    To study science in an Adventist university is not a right but a privilege.
    It is appropriate to explain to a young person who might respond to the curriculum by passing out protest flyers in the middle of the church parking lot, “Son, I don’t think you are ready for this class. For you to discover that there is natural evidence that is not in harmony with the Genesis account of creation would be unduly traumatic for you. For your sake, we are not able to admit you to class. Thank you for submitting your application. God bless you.”




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    • @Phillip Brantley:
      And why science teachers should not be treated the same way ? If they cannot bear the tension between their professional conviction and the Church’s/Bible’s beliefs, they should be told: We are sorry, but you are not yet ready to teach in a SDA institution.




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  24. I am a little surprised that Phillip is actually posting outside of the left-tent.

    Well – glad to see him here.

    Phillip Brantley: In addition, full disclosure should be made regarding what science is, what mainstream science is, what the scientific method is, and what the differences are between science and theology/philosophy. The student should be warned that there are some Adventists who find the teaching of evolution in science class to be offensive. The disclosures should be comprehensive and exhaustive, so that no admitted student is surprised or upset. If the prospective student does not evidence a thorough understanding of these disclosures, he or she should not be admitted to class.

    Part of that statement is logical – but then it falls appart right at the end.

    It should have ended with something like “the student should be informed that they will be given the critical thinking skills to admit to and learn from the junk-science confirmed frauds and blunders engaged on behalf of by faith alone devotees to evolutionism. They will be given the skills to understand the shell game being played and to effectively unmask the pretenders use of junk-science.

    Phil said –

    2. The student should be required to pass a biblical hermeneutics examination that demonstrates that he or she understands the relationship between the Bible and external data. The student should know that for Seventh-day Adventists science has no relevance in determining how the sacred text is interpreted or regarded

    Here again – a bit of truth mixed with error.

    Hermeneutics does not mix science with interpretation – that much is true. hint: Even Dawkins can read Gen 1 and 2 and “get the point” that Moses was no evolutionist.

    But SDAs do apply science to the Bible when they are engaged in epistemology – which determines how the Bible is to be regarded.

    Turns out – logic and reason are fully in place when we compare the Bible to what we see around us – as much as Dawkins thinks that is totally absurd.

    in Christ,

    Bob




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  25. Phillip Brantley: To study science in an Adventist university is not a right but a privilege.
    It is appropriate to explain to a young person who might respond to the curriculum by passing out protest flyers in the middle of the church parking lot

    Hello – this is June 4 2011 – and LSU has already admitted to their blunder in their in-the-tank for evolutionism past – as they themselves admit to harshly mistreating students who happen to be actual Seventh-day Adventists because of their SDA beliefs on FB #6.

    What part of this is still “news” Phil?

    in Christ,

    Bob




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  26. BobRyan: It should have ended with something like “the student should be informed that they will be given the critical thinking skills to admit to and learn from the junk-science confirmed frauds and blunders engaged on behalf of by faith alone devotees to evolutionism. They will be given the skills to understand the shell game being played and to effectively unmask the pretenders use of junk-science.

    Yes, Bob, we know it is great fun to ridicule and mock people who believe differently than we do. We get it.

    And thank you for reminding us that only creationists are able to use evidence to bolster their beliefs, and that faith is something we should criticize evolutionists for using. We get it.




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  27. I am pleased that Kent has come out so transparently against the notion of applying critical thinking skills to the topic of evolution.

    It is not often that you will see people do that “out loud”.

    Credit where credit is due.

    in Christ,

    Bob




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  28. Florin Lăiu: @Phillip Brantley:And why science teachers should not be treated the same way ? If they cannot bear the tension between their professional conviction and the Church’s/Bible’s beliefs, they should be told: We are sorry, but you are not yet ready to teach in a SDA institution.

    Agreed, Evidently Brantley doesn’t know that TEACHING in an SDA college is not a “right” but a privilege!




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  29. To Bob Ryan,

    Methinks you’ve put yourself in a tight corner by constantly putting down the evolutionists. You and Sean Pitman look mighty arrogant, and hugely disrespectful of others, when you write as if only we Adventists are capable of higher thinking. Your approach is exactly what puts off others to Adventism. We should be the most humble, not the most self-assured, in Christianity. Tone it down about 5 notches.

    Meredith
    John 3:16




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  30. Meredith – in 3SG 90-94 Theistic evolutionism is called ‘the worst form of infidelity’ — your post above seems to want to make the claim that I have been a bit too harsh on “the worst form of infidelity” known to us.

    All I have done in my posts is point out the contrast between some of the blunders (historic ones that even evolutionists will admit to in most cases) or else well documented examples where evidence is given that evolutionism is itself just a competing religion with Christianity.

    I also point to the fact that even atheist evolutionists like Dawkins admit openly to the existence of the same gap bewteen evolutoinism and the Bible as has been claimed by Darwin and even by the 3SG 90-94 text.

    In essence – I have been stating the obvious.

    in Christ,

    Bob




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  31. BobRyan: I also point to the fact that even atheist evolutionists like Dawkins admit openly to the existence of the same gap bewteen evolutoinism and the Bible as has been claimed by Darwin and even by the 3SG 90-94 text. In essence – I have been stating the obvious.

    Yes, the obvious, over and over and over and over. I think this must be post #237 on 3SG. And post #311 on how we should adhere to the higher critical reasoning proferred by Richard Dawkins and Charles Darwin (of all people!). If anyone by now hasn’t “gotten” it, they simply are not going to.

    Does anyone agree with the following statement from Cliff Goldstein?

    Thus it isn’t hard to sympathize with those who are confronted with scientific “facts” that contradict all
    they have believed. We have to be sensitive to their struggles; we have to affirm them in their search; and we
    have to create an environment in which they can, without being judged or condemned, ask questions as they
    work through these issues.

    Or should we continue to ridicule and mock such people?




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  32. Dear Meredith

    I appreciated your comments.

    If Adventists can’t practice Christian tolerance and love amongst themselves then what hope do have to attact new members, especially youth to their pews?

    No doubt that eventually the intolerant could form some sort of ‘remnant’ or splinter group of the church. Let’s not forget the lessons learned from the David Koreshs’ and Harold Campings’ of the world.

    I give credit to Educate Truth for airing the views of all. Hopefully moderation and respect for diiferent viewpoints will eventually prevail. We don’t all have to think or believe the same things but we can all try to treat each other with respect, and- dare I say it- friendship! Fortunately I’ve been treated so here and can only with that same benefit for those that differ in opinion.

    Your agnostic friend
    Ken




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  33. Meredith: To Bob Ryan,Methinks you’ve put yourself in a tight corner by constantly putting down the evolutionists. You and Sean Pitman look mighty arrogant, and hugely disrespectful of others, when you write as if only we Adventists are capable of higher thinking. Your approach is exactly what puts off others to Adventism. We should be the most humble, not the most self-assured, in Christianity. Tone it down about 5 notches.MeredithJohn 3:16

    Your entirely wrong on why others are “put off” regarding adventism. Look at where the SDA Church is growing most rapidly in the world. Do you think those areas are where our evangelists and pastors are afraid to preaach God’s Truth?

    Where the SDA Church is not growing as well is where secular humanism has taken hold, mainly in “first world” countries like the U.S., Western Europe, etc.

    These Third World areas are full of people who actually want to hear biblical truth, not some humanistic worldview as presented at LSU.

    If you think I’m crazy, then listen to the “progresives” in our SDA Church whine and complain about how the “world church” is becoming too “fundamental.” All those “third world” characters are trying to tell us “sophisticated” and “educated” North Americans what to believe.




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  34. I appreciate the comments we find in 3SG 90-94.

    I also like that discussion where we were told that anyone who dares to take a stand against sin in the camp will be accused of being mean spirited and unchristian.

    Surely seeing these points is the easy part of the discussion.

    in Christ,

    Bob




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  35. BobRyan said : I also point to the fact that even atheist evolutionists like Dawkins admit openly to the existence of the same gap bewteen evolutoinism and the Bible as has been claimed by Darwin and even by the 3SG 90-94 text. In essence – I have been stating the obvious.

    Which points out the “choke point” in the flawed arguments that either defend TE as valid or defend TE as a “big tent” idea inside the church.

    But as is the case with “choke points” in an argument – where the side of error simply has no answer at all for that point – the “solution” often tried is of the illogical form “please do not remind me of the choke point in my argument”.

    Professor Kent:
    Yes, the obvious, over and over and over and over. I think this must be post #237 on 3SG. And post #311 on how we should adhere to the higher critical reasoning proferred by Richard Dawkins and Charles Darwin (of all people!). If anyone by now hasn’t “gotten” it, they simply are not going to.

    hmm – “choke point” noted.

    in Christ,

    Bob




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  36. Bob Ryan is absolutely correct. TE’s exist. We are reminded of this when we read 3SG 90-91. Higher reasoning also dictates that “TE’s exist.” Only a doltz would suggest otherwise, but this remains a distinct possibility since there are many who actually believe in “birds to reptiles” happy fiction storytelling, so there are undoubtedly those who also believe that TE’s do not exist. This is very important to understand because it is such a very unflattering POV.




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    • @Professor Kent:

      I agree there as well – those who are foolish enought to embrace the birds-come-from-reptiles storytelling in evolutionism show a paucity in logic that could hypothetially explain a subsequent “yes but TE’s do not exist” nonsequitter — as you insist above.

      Though why you insist on going there is a bit innexplical at the moment.

      in Christ,

      Bob




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  37. BobRyan: Though why you insist on going there is a bit innexplical at the moment.

    It’s a mantra worth reiterating: TE’s exist and the birds-come-from-reptiles is a fairy tale (even though many consider it a valid scientific hypothesis).




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  38. BobRyan: Though why you insist on going there is a bit innexplical at the moment.

    Yes, it certainly is inexplicable that we have to keep on “going there.” Some people don’t get it that 3SG says that theistic evolution is the worst form of infidelity. 3SG, Dawkins, Provine, Ryan, Myers, Darwin, Patton, and even common sense tell us that you can’t be a TE and believe in the Bible at the same time, and that “TE’s exist.” When you choose to believe in birds-to-reptiles happy fiction story telling, you are no longer using critical reasoning, and therefore you cannot be an Adventist. Maybe a Seventh-day Darwinian but not a Seventh-day 3SG-90-91-believing not-by-faith-alone inquiring-minds-want-to-know Adventist. Only a paucity in logic would lead to any other conclusion.




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  39. BobRyan: Indeed – this appears to be a banner day for Kent “the creationist”.

    Why thank you, Bob. Just one of many glorious days celebrating the creation. I revel in each. Critical thinking about 3SG 90-91 reminds us that “TE’s exist.”

    😉

    Professing Christ,
    Professor Kent




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  40. Ken: If Adventists can’t practice Christian tolerance and love amongst themselves then what hope do have to attact new members, especially youth to their pews?

    This is a legitimate concern, Ken, that you and Meredith have touched on.




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  41. Ken: If Adventists can’t practice Christian tolerance and love amongst themselves then what hope do have to attact new members, especially youth to their pews?

    The verdict is already in on that pont. The SDA denomination is one of the fastest growing denominations in America while many others are stalled or declining according to a recent survey.

    The fact that anyone who upholds some unpopular stand on truth will be falsely accused as being mean spirited and unchristian is a well documented fact of Bible history and world history.

    Hence the high level of complaining on this site a by a few members who don’t like the 3SG 90-94 statement.

    But that should not be confused with accusations of actual “substance”. The SDA denomination is not growing via compromise but rather via its distinctive teaching. Why go to a small denomination cookie-cut from the same mold as a larger one if you already enjoy the larger one?

    One of our key distinctives is the 7th day Sabbath of creation week as found in Gen 1-2:3. To imagine that we must flake away from that position in order to be accepted and grow, is to miss the point of the survey results.

    in Christ,

    Bob




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  42. BobRyan: The verdict is already in on that pont. The SDA denomination is one of the fastest growing denominations in America while many others are stalled or declining according to a recent survey.The fact that anyone who upholds some unpopular stand on truth will be falsely accused as being mean spirited and unchristian is a well documented fact of Bible history and world history.Hence the high level of complaining on this site a by a few members who don’t like the 3SG 90-94 statement.But that should not be confused with accusations of actual “substance”. The SDA denomination is not growing via compromise but rather via its distinctive teaching. Why go to a small denomination cookie-cut from the same mold as a larger one if you already enjoy the larger one?One of our key distinctives is the 7th day Sabbath of creation week as found in Gen 1-2:3. To imagine that we must flake away from that position in order to be accepted and grow, is to miss the point of the survey results.in Christ,Bob

    You’re exactly right, Bob. Most people join the SDA Church because we have something we actually stand for, in contradistinction to many other so-called “Christian” denominations.




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  43. The 3SG 90-94 statement should be posted on every SDA college’s home page. And on every SDA church’s home page as well. And on highway billboards across America. And on every box of Kellogg’s cereal, to remind us every morning at breakfast (assuming SDAs are still loyal to Kellogg’s brilliant invention of a healthier breakfast).




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  44. Ken: Dear MeredithI appreciated your comments.If Adventists can’t practice Christian tolerance and love amongst themselves then what hope do have to attact new members, especially youth to their pews?Your agnostic friendKen

    Ken, The idea that “fundamentalist” SDA’s are “kicking” members out by their (the fundamentalists) inhospitable behavior is one of the progressives’ most common fallacies, and has been promulgated on this website by several people.

    I’ve heard the “story” many times–so and so member, pastor, elder, etc. mistreated me ,etc. When I ask what person or even what SDA Church this happened at, not one person has ever given me any details.

    I’ve also been to many dozens of SDA churches over the my 42 years as an SDA,in several countries, and I’ve never seen any correlation to whether the liberals or the conservative churches (yes, there are both) have the most hospitable environment for members or visitors. I’ve been very much welcome in both types.




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  45. BobRyan: Hence the high level of complaining on this site a by a few members who don’t like the 3SG 90-94 statement.

    Who’s complaining? This gets mentioned more than the name of Jesus; how much more prominent would you like it?

    “TE’s exist.”




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