@Bill Sorensen: Actually, that claim that Sean makes that we …

Comment on Adventist Review: Pastors Who Don’t Believe by Sean Pitman.

@Bill Sorensen:

Actually, that claim that Sean makes that we can’t “judge motive” is false.

John the Baptist “You generation of vipers, who warned you of the wrath to come?”

If that isn’t judging motive, I don’t know what is.

John was judging evil actions against one’s neighbor, not honestly mistaken doctrinal beliefs.

And Stephen who accused his interigators “You do always resist the Holy Ghost.”

Who had just murdered Jesus – a moral crime by anyone’s book. Again, this wasn’t a judgment against potentially honest confusion over doctrinal issues that are not internally knowable. Also, there were those in the crowd who sincerely and honestly believed that they were working for God – Saul included. Such will not be held morally accountable for their errors. They are only held accountable for what they did know and understand or could have known, but resisted knowing for selfish reasons (which requires a correct understanding of motive – the prerogative of God alone).

And Jesus who said, “You are of your father the devil.”

Uh, Jesus was/is God… and he accused those who he rebuked in this very direct manner of all kinds of violations of the Royal Law of Love toward their fellow man – especially the poor and helpless.

Yet none of these and like statements are a final judgment on any individual. Repentance is possible. None the less, we can and do judge motive according to the present reality.

You cannot make moral judgments regarding doctrinal truths that are not internally knowable any more than you can read the heart of a person with complete accuracy. Only God can make perfect moral judgments on such issues – not you and not me.

Saul was no doubt present at Stephens trial. And he was one who “always resisted the Holy Ghost.” Yet he was converted at a future time.

He was converted when he understood the truth. He was not held morally accountable to the truth before he clearly understood it.

Sean needs to understand the difference between a present judgment and a final judgment that the bible condemns and tells us no one can do. “Judge not, that ye be not judged” refers to the final judgment. Meaning we have no authority to consign someone to hell and beyond redemption. Such as the Catholic church does, and the Jews who condemned Jesus.

You have no right to make moral judgments of any kind regarding doctrinal issues that are not internally or intuitively knowable – like a correct understanding of the literal 6-day creation week. As Mrs. White notes in The Desire of Ages (referenced above), “Since you cannot discern motive, you are incapable of judging another.”

This statement is in reference to all moral judgments where an ability to judge motive is required. You do not have this ability. Therefore, you cannot make consistently accurate moral judgments. You cannot know if someone truly does or does not comprehend the truth of the literal 6-day creation week. You just don’t know for sure. No one does but God.

Sorry to burst your bubble, but you ain’t God 😉

Sean Pitman

Sean Pitman Also Commented

Adventist Review: Pastors Who Don’t Believe
In any case, any further comments concerning the morality or lack thereof of those involved with the LSU situation will no longer be posted here on Educate Truth. However, You are free to send me a personal E-mail if you wish (my E-mail can be obtained by visiting my website listed below).


Sean Pitman

Adventist Review: Pastors Who Don’t Believe
@Ron Stone M.D.:

Well, Sean, atheists have written books explaining what, why, and how they have rejected God’s Truth. Those at LSU have explained what they believe and why they have accepted Man’s word and rejected God’s Truth. You say we can never know anything about this, and they must not really “understand” what they are doing.

I don’t know if they do or do not really understand what they are doing; and neither do you. Only God knows for sure…

Not only would I and others here disagree with you, but I believe the atheists would disagree. The idea that church members cannot be “judged” by their words and actions is simply not biblical.

And the soldiers who nailed Jesus to the cross would have claimed at the time that they knew exactly what they were doing too… but did they really? Jesus prayed for them saying, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.” – Luke 23:34 NIV

It is quite possible that even if a person is very adamant that he/she knows exactly what he/she is doing, that this person may not really know. This is a possibility that only God knows for sure. You simply cannot make this particular type of moral judgment with complete accuracy. You and I can judge the rightness or wrongness of the word or act (specifically regarding a doctrine like the literal 6-day creation week), but we cannot judge the rightness or wrongness of the heart; the motive.

There is a difference between being mistaken and sinning. Sinning requires a deliberate rebellion against known truth – something that you cannot tell for sure in cases of doctrinal disagreements on such things as the literal creation week or the true origin of the Sabbath or any other such commandment that deals specifically with man’s relationship with his or her God and God alone.

Sean Pitman

Adventist Review: Pastors Who Don’t Believe
@Ron Stone M.D.:

Sean says Moses and the Prophets are “empirical” evidence then says they are not!

Moses and the prophets are only “empirical evidence” in support of the Bible’s credibility if they actually say something true regarding the real world in which we all live (which I think they clearly do).

However, if Moses and the prophets did in fact clearly contradicted the real world (i.e., real history), the hypothesis that the Bible’s credibility is supported by them would be effectively falsified (as is the case for the Book of Mormon, for example) in such a situation.

It is in this sense that things like biblical prophecy must be held up for testing before biblical prophecy can be rationally accepted as credible (at least any more credible than the Book of Mormon).

In other words, biblical credibility is dependent upon the empirical evidence. Without the empirical evidence, there would simply be no greater rational reason to believe the Bible as any more credible than some moral fable that someone simply made up as a “cleverly invented story”. – 2 Peter 1:16 NIV

Sean Pitman

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