The Problem & the Basics -
This is a complex issue with the Adeventsit and not easily answered. The ulimate answer will depend on whether we are talking about on a "personal" level, or on a "organizational" level.
Let's first start off by labaling excatly what a cult is. The defintion of a cult in the (worldly) Websters Dictionary is:
|1 : formal religious veneration : WORSHIP
2 : a system of religious beliefs and ritual; also : its body of adherents
3 : a religion regarded as unorthodox or spurious; also : its body of adherents
4 : a system for the cure of disease based on dogma set forth by its promulgator <health cults>
5 a : great devotion to a person, idea, object, movement, or work (as a film or book); especially : such devotion regarded as a literary or intellectual fad b : a usually small group of people characterized by such devotion
In the Nelsons Bible Dictionary you will find a cult defined as:
You can see that the definitions are slightly different, but most evangelectical Christian organizations will agree that cults have a common thread or theme:
Many Christians might might have more or less, and there are others that could be re-catogorized or listed. The key thing here is to see that there is a certain amount or ERROR involved here that makes cultic organizations what they are. The prime examples of this is with the Morman and Jehovah Witness (JW) organizations. There is clearly this seen in these organizations and fit these listed themes to a "T".
Before I go on any further I would like you to take a test. This test is what I call the CS Test and will test your "critical reasoning." Critical reasoning is the process of using your mind to figure out every day problems that you might encounter. It usually involves a "step-by-step" process that takes you through a sitauation to figure out a solution and/or conclusion.
The Test -
Say you see a person that you know. You see the person rob a bank one day. They not only do it one day, but they rob many banks many times. In other words, this person consistanly and persistanly robs banks on a continual basis.
Is that person:
|1) a Saint|
|2) just a Misguided person.|
|3) a theif|
If you got #3 then you get an A grade, you've passed the CS test with flying colors (CS stands for common sense). If you got #1 or #2 then we have a problem and nothing more on this page will make sense to you.
Why do we go though this "simple" exercise? Because it seems like some people in these last days have a problem. They cannot "figure out" right and wrong, or what is good or evil. The Bible notes (XXXXX), whoe to those that call good evil and evil good. Scripture also notes that in these last day that there would be rampet deception (XXXXX), that EVEN THE ELECT WOULD BE DECEIEVED. That is happening a lot today folks! So with the CS (common sense) test you used logic and deductive reasoning to step-by-step figure out that the person was a theif. Jesus said, you will KNOW THEM by their FRUITS (XXXXX).
Let us do some tesing and fruit inspection with the SDA.
|1) It has been proven time and time again, and through many writings and examinations of the facts, that Ellen G. White is indeed a FALSE PROPHETESS. Scriptures is CLEAR about false prophets (XXXXXX)|
|2) SDA have not ever renounced Ellen G Whites writings or doctrine. In fact, they broadly esteem her writtings as "a lesser light" and regularly teach them in a majority of SDA churches and schools.|
|3) Using Ellen G. Whites writtings, SDA call themselves the "reminat church", and that they are the ONLY ONES in these last days that have the truth (as seen in the sign of the Sabbath, and they keeping it).|
|4) Using Ellen G. Whites writtings, SDA claim false doctrine in an Investigative Judgement that is going on in heaven as per the 1844 prophetcy (besides many others).|
|5) Using Ellen G. Whites writtings, SDA say that Sunday Keepers are GOING TO HELL (Rev XXXX) because they are following the Beast (Rome) and keeping his mark (Sunday).|
|6) SDA also are very legalistic in keeping Old Testiment laws and rituals (commandment keeping, vegetariamism, no dancing, no jeweley, etc).|
Now, I ask YOU to use critical reasoning here to figure out for yourself whether SDA are a cult. If you can figure out about the thief in the test then I'm sure you won't have a problem here.
Well, the question might be asked, "Don't they teach Jesus?", or another "Are any SDA saved?"
These questions bring you into another area that is beside the fact of the issue of cultism. As I noted before, the issue of cultism depends on the organization or individual. Another question relevant to this is, "Are there Mormons or JW's who are saved?" There are many Mormons and JWs who are fromer evangelicals, ones that were "converted" over to those cults. These evangelicals were (or are) maybe "born again", so just might be saved. They are definately decieved, but are also saved. How do you know? We CANNOT! This is in the terretory of the Holy Spirt and God.
So what does this example (Morman and JW individuals ) say about SDA's. That since we don't know the heart we must leave this to God, and that there is the possiblity and all probability that there are many saved SDA individuals. But also using the example of the Morman and JW organizations, the SDA are very much a cult.
They may preach the same Jesus as evangeliticals, but they proclaim a wrong doctrine and gospel (based on, again, a FALSE prophet.) Evangeliticals gospel is that we are saved by grace alone. SDA gospel is that you are saved by grace (intially) and keeping the law (long term). Evangeliticals believe that Jesus was our last great prophet (Heb XXXXX), and that the Bible alone is our source. SDA believe that Ellen G White was and is our last days prophet, and that HER WRITINGS ARE A LESSER LIGHT TO THE BIBLE (basically adding her writings along side of scriptures!!)
We could go on with this analysis, but just as it didn't take you long to figure out who was a theif in the test, it shouldn't take you long to figure out what and who the SDA really are.
If you need the documented facts of this then we have a large amount of information at this site for you to investigate. Follow the links also in this site and the SDA network to see other sources on the SDA.
To SDA -
DON'T LET Adventism RIP YOU OFF and be a theif of your joy, peace and freedom (of grace) that God has for you. Return to the truth of the gospel of grace in Jesus Christ. Renounce your affliation with SDA and come out of her (XXXXX) into a true relationship with God. Paul noted that leaven (rot and corruption) will leaven the whole lump (XXXXX). You CANNOT stay some place where a LIE is being preached, It WILL infect you and drain your spiritual powours and strength. Use your critical reasoning and common sense today to follow God.
Think you can't do it? Well I ask you to remember Elijah at Mount Carmel. He challeged the people to "CHOOSE YOU THIS DAY WHO YOU WILL SERVE."
Are you a Christian? Do you really love and desire to serve God? I ask you, who will you serve this day, SDA or God! It's that simple.
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