The Real Church That Appears as About to Fall But Does Not
The following statement is presented just as it appears in its reference. All bracketed portions are just as Ellen White inserted them:
“And thou, Capernaum [Seventh-day Adventists, who have had great light], which art exalted unto heaven [in point of privilege], shalt be brought down to hell: for if the mighty works, which have been done in thee, had been done in Sodom, it would have remained until this day. But I say unto you, That it shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom IN THE DAY OF JUDGMENT, than for thee.” E.G. White, Review and Herald Articles, vol. 3, p. 69, col. 3.
Such pronouncements have the ring of a true prophet! Capernaum was a corporate city, and the SDA is Biblically represented as a corporate city, the corporate city of Jerusalem. It will be brought down to hell as a corporate city [church], except for a small remnant who escape, Ezekiel 5:1-5, as was the case with Israel in the 70 A.D. destruction of Jerusalem.
The professing Seventh-day Adventist church has got a lot of mileage from a statement by Ellen White that says the church will appear as about to fall but it will remain while sinners are shaken out. The professing SDA once church militant has thought and still thinks that it is the church that will appear as about to fall, but will not, and will be the church from which sinners are shaken. This is a most serious error that must be investigated in the context of very important statements by Scripture and Ellen White. First, we will consider Ellen White’s statement:
“The church may appear as about to fall, but it does not fall. It remains, while the sinners in Zion will be sifted out–the chaff separated from the precious wheat….The REMNANT that purify their souls by obeying the truth gather strength from the trying process, exhibiting the beauty of holiness amid the surrounding apostasy.” E.G. White, Selected Messages, vol. 2, 380. It is obvious from the above statement and from common sense that any church that does not fall is the church triumphant. A few other items are obvious from the above statement:
Zion is the REMNANT. Zion is the church triumphant, not the church militant. This is also borne out by the following Scripture: “But ye are come unto mount Sion (A version of Zion), and unto the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to an innumerable company of angels, To the general assembly and church of the firstborn, which are written in heaven, and to God the Judge of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect.” Hebrews, 12:22, 23.
It is Zion, the church triumphant and not the church militant that appears as about to fall, but does not. Zion is the remnant that purifies their souls by obeying the truth amid surrounding apostasy. Zion is a heavenly church Kingdom. The sinners are shaken out of the heavenly church Kingdom, not an earthly church organization. Just men made perfect must refer to the church triumphant. Zion is the firstborn or the firstfruits. Revelation 14:1-4, identifies the FIRSTFRUITS AS THE 144,000. Mount Zion in the heavenly Jerusalem city, is the general assembly and church of the FIRSTBORN, [FIRSTFRUITS] that are written in heaven, and it consists of the spirits of just men made perfect. This is the church triumphant. This is the heavenly kingdom church from which and by which sinners are shaken, (Matthew 13:41-49). This heavenly kingdom church has earthly representatives in the form of the bride of Jesus Christ, or the 144,000, which are the bride and not the guests of the heavenly kingdom. Notice:
“The Holy City, the New Jerusalem, which is the capital and REPRESENTATIVE of the kingdom, is called ‘the bride, the Lambs wife.’….Clearly, then, the bride represents the Holy City, and the virgins that go our to meet the bridegroom are a symbol of the church. In the Revelation the people of God are said to be the guests at the marriage supper. Revelation 19:9. If guests, they cannot be represented also as the bride.” E.G. White, The Great Controversy, (1911 edition, p. 426-427. The people of God are symbolized by the ten virgins, the church militant, while the representatives of the Kingdom are the bride. The bride, the 144,000, are not the guests, and the guests are not the bride at a wedding.
How do we Know That the 144,000 are the Bride of Christ? We know that the 144,000 are the Bride and not the guests, from the following statement which defines the REMNANT:
“The woman is a symbol of the church, and the REMNANT of the church represents the Christians of THE LAST GENERATION OF MEN, living just prior to the second advent…Here, then, are the causes of the dragon’s warfare upon the remnant. They teach the observance of the ten commandments, and the revival of the gifts, and acknowledge the gift of prophecy among them. When the Devil got one foot upon the fourth commandment, and the other upon the gifts planted in the Christian church by Jesus Christ, then his satanic majesty was filled with revengeful delight. But when THE REMNANT, WHOM GOD DESIGNS TO FIT FOR TRANSLATION TO HEAVEN WITHOUT SEEING DEATH, ‘ask for the old paths, [historic Adventism] where is the good way, and walk therein,’ then the dragon is wroth, and makes war on them'” E.G. White, Spiritual Gifts, vol. III, p. 26.
Ellen White Further Distinguishes The Bride From the Guests by Saying That the Bride Awakens the Guest, the Ten Virgins
“Lingering near the bride’s house are ten young women robed in white. Each carries a lighted lamp and a small flagon for oil. All are anxiously watching for the appearance of the bridegroom. But there is a delay [Since 1844]. Hour after hour passes; the watchers become weary and fall asleep. At midnight the cry is heard, ‘Behold, the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet him.’ The sleepers, [all those ten virgins slept–Matt. 25:5] suddenly awaking, spring to their feet. They see the procession [of the bride–in context] moving on, bright with torches and glad with music [the torch of truth and the Song of Moses and the Lamb, that overcoming is possible]. They hear the voice of the bridegroom AND THE VOICE OF THE BRIDE. The ten maidens seize their lamps and begin to trim them, in haste to go forth. But five have neglected to fill their flasks with oil [character–overcoming]. They did not anticipate so long a delay, and they have not prepared for the emergency….. The five with lighted lamps joined the throng and entered the house with the bridal train, and the door was shut.” E.G. White, Christ’s Object Lessons, pp. 405, 406. If the ten virgins are awakened by the VOICE OF THE BRIDE, then the bride is a different entity. She is Zion, the earthly representative of the heavenly Jerusalem. She is the church triumphant. She is the church from which and by which the unrepentant sinners are shaken.
Ellen White Says That the Church Triumphant Co-Exists With the Church Militant in Order to Come to the Aid of the Church Militant
“The members of the church triumphant–the church in heaven–will be permitted to draw near to the members of the church militant, to aid them in their necessity.” E.G. White, The Southern Watchman, Sep. 8, 1903. “Those who think that the church militant is the church triumphant make a great mistake.” E.G. White, The Upward Look, 152.
The professing SDA church once church militant has made that great mistake; that greatly cherished error.
It is During the Time of Jacob’s Trouble That the Church Triumphant Appears as About to Fall but Does not Fall
“The people of God will then be plunged into those scenes of affliction and distress described by the prophet as the time of Jacob’s trouble…. Jacob’s night of anguish, when he wrestled in prayer for deliverance from the hand of Esau (Genesis 32:24-30), represents the experience of God’s people in the time of trouble….Jacob’s company, unarmed and defenseless, SEEMED ABOUT TO FALL HELPLESS VICTIMS OF VIOLENCE AND SLAUGHTER.” E.G. White, The Great Controversy, (1911 edition), p. 616.
Here we find “the people of God, paralleled with Jacob’s company which appeared as about to fall, but did not. It is the church triumphant during Jacob’s Great Time of Trouble that appears as about to fall, not the professing SDA church once militant that has already fallen into the Omega of Apostasy.
A Professing SDA Church That Does Fall
God fully warned Philadelphia, in Revelation 3:9, the true SDA church era, that associated with it would be a people who called themselves “Jew,” or Seventh-day Adventist commandment-keepers, who were not and do lie. That faction is New Movement, New Organization Adventism, that has infiltrated the professing SDA church, like a Trojan Horse, and has taken over that church. Ellen White predicted this Omega Apostasy “takeover” in Selected Messages, vol. 1, 205, 206. Here are her words:
“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 [NEW] 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?” E.G. White, Selected Messages, vol. 1, 204, 205.
Every specification of the above statement depicting the Omega of Apostasy within the professing SDA church, has been abundantly fulfilled. Those with only a surface knowledge will not recognize what is going on in the church. However, it is clear to any with spiritual discernment that this NEW MOVEMENT, NEW ORGANIZATION, is firmly in place “among,” within, the professing SDA church. It is led by the celebrationists who would rather celebrate on the banks of the Jordan, than weep between the porch and the altar, for all the abominations in the land and in the church.
An SDA Church That is Bringing Every Uncouth Thing Into its CampMeetings Just Before the Close of Probation
Below is a description of the imposter SDA church that does fall. If the bad were shaken out of this church, it would not be bringing every uncouth thing into its CampMeetings just before the close of probation:
“Worship With a Bedlam of Noise.–It is impossible to estimate too largely the work that the Lord will accomplish through His proposed vessels in carrying out His mind and purpose. The things you have described as taking place in Indiana, the Lord has shown me would take place just before the close of probation. Every uncouth thing will be demonstrated. There will be shouting, with drums, music, and dancing. The senses of rational beings will become so confused that they cannot be trusted to make right decisions. And this is called [CELEBRATING] the moving of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit never reveals itself in such methods, in such a bedlam of noise. This is an invention of Satan to cover up his ingenious methods for making of none effect the pure, sincere, elevating, ennobling, sanctifying truth for this time. Better never have the worship of God blended with music than to use musical instruments to do the work which last January was represented to me would be brought into our camp meetings.” E.G. White, Selected Messages, vol. 2, p. 36.
If the bad were shaken out of the professing SDA church, as its leaders and members believe, why would every uncouth thing be brought into its campmeetings just before probation closes? Why would Ezekiel 22:17-31, say that the tares are shaken into the midst of Jerusalem, the church, for burning and melting? Why would Ellen White say that the Ezekiel 9 slaughter, would begin with men, maidens and little children, at the professing SDA church, Testimonies, vol. 5, 211, if all the bad were shaken out? “If doubts and unbelief are cherished, the faithful ministers will be removed from the people who think they know so much. ‘If thou hadst known’, said Christ, ‘even thou, at least in this thy day the things which belong unto thy peace! but now they are hid from thine eyes.'” E.G. White, Testimonies to Ministers, 409-410.
The Church Triumphant
I was once asked the question: “What do you think about all the E.G. White statements saying that we should not leave the church?” That is a good and valid question, and must be considered along with the conditional statements Ellen White made suggesting the possible need to leave the church and/or implying such need to leave.
Let us take a thoughtful and prayerful look at both types of Statements with their qualifying counterparts, which is something the SDA church and its members have failed to do in any honest way. The no-leave statements that are generally accepted as counsel that we should never leave the SDA church under any conditions; that the proverbial “SHIP” will finally go through no matter what the church does, have never been properly balanced with other qualifying statements to the contrary. Here we will attempt this long overdue task will all the fairness we can muster with God’s help.
“I testify to my brethren and sisters that the church of Christ, enfeebled and defective as it may be, is the only object on earth on which He bestows His supreme regard. While He extends to all the world His invitation to come to Him and be saved, He commissions His angels to render divine help to every soul that cometh to Him in repentance and contrition, and He comes personally by His Holy Spirit into the midst of His church.” E.G. White, Testimonies to Ministers, p. 15.
The above statement is qualified in Acts of The Apostles, pp. 11, 12, to be the church triumphant in context. Here are the qualifying contextual statements: “The church is God’s fortress, His city of refuge, which He holds in a revolted world. Any betrayal of the church is treachery to Him who has bought mankind with the blood of His only-begotten Son. From the beginning, FAITHFUL SOULS have constituted the church ON EARTH. In EVERY AGE the Lord has had HIS WATCHMEN, who have borne A FAITHFUL TESTIMONY TO THE GENERATION IN WHICH THEY LIVED. These SENTINELS gave THE MESSAGE OF WARNING; and when they were called to lay off their armor, others took up the word. God brought these witnesses into COVENANT RELATION with Himself, uniting the church on earth with the church in heaven. He has sent forth His angels to minister to His church, and the gates of hell have not been able to prevail against His people.
Through centuries of persecution, conflict, and darkness, God has sustained His church. Not one cloud has fallen upon it that He has not prepared for; not one opposing force has risen to counterwork His work, that He has not foreseen. All has taken place as He predicted. He has not left His church forsaken, but has traced in prophetic declarations what would occur, and that which His Spirit inspired the prophets to foretell has been brought about. All His purposes will be fulfilled. His law is linked with His throne , and no power of evil can destroy it. Truth is inspired and guarded by God; and it will triumph over all opposition.
During ages of spiritual darkness the church of God has been as a city set on a hill. From age to age, through successive generations, the pure doctrines of heaven have been unfolding within its borders. Enfeebled and defective as it may appear, the church is the one object upon which God bestows in a special sense His supreme regard. It is the theater of His grace, in which He delights to reveal His power to transform hearts.” E. G. White, Acts of the Apostles, 11, 12.
We are all familiar with the Church’s statements about not joining ANY New Movement or ANY new organization. Some interpret these statements as meaning we should never leave the organized SDA church militant under any circumstances; that the bad will finally be shaken from the church militant to leave it the SDA Church Triumphant. But that position is erroneous if one follows the weight of evidence formula and interprets all of Ellen White’s relative statements so that no contradiction is incurred.
Ellen White qualified her statements about not joining ANY NEW MOVEMENT. She said we should never call the SDA Church that is keeping the commandments of God and heeding the Laodicean Message, Babylon, and that we should not leave such a church, because there would be no where else to go, and I completely agree with her.
But what if a New Movement should form “among,” within the professing SDA Church Militant, as Ellen White prophesied could occur in the Omega of Apostasy, Selected Messages, vol. 1, 204-205. What if that New Movement should do all that Ellen White prophesied it would, such as: The meaning of the statement in its full context alters its meaning totally. By the context in the above statement, the words “Enfeebled and defective as it may appear,” refer to the church triumphant, and not to the church militant. Notice all the qualifying words in the above Acts of the Apostles statement:
From the beginning FAITHFUL SOULS have constituted the church ON EARTH. In every age the Lord has had his watchmen, who have borne A FAITHFUL TESTIMONY…” These sentinels gave the “Message of Warning.” They were brought into “Covenant Relationship” with God. These are the angels God has sent to minister to His church [militant–Patience, friend, this will be proven below]. Further proof that the “Enfeebled and Defective” statement means the Church Triumphant is that it is also stated in Selected Messages, vol. 2, p. 396, under the heading: “The Church Triumphant.” The statement has been taken entirely out of context for decades and applied to the SDA Church militant. This is a great mistake, and Ellen White says so:
“Those who think that the church militant is the church triumphant make a great mistake.” E.G. White, The Upward Look, 152. Does the SDA Militant Become the Church Triumphant Sometime in the Future When The Bad Are Shaken Out of it? This is what the SDA church militant has taught since Ellen White’s death, but is it true? Let’s permit Ellen White to answer the question:
“The members of the church triumphant–the church in heaven–will be permitted to draw near to the members of the church militant, to aid them in their necessity.” E. G. White, The Southern Watchman, Sep. 8, 1903. (Taken from the Ellen White Estate Computer Disk containing all of Ellen White’s releases and published writings).
Now, pray tell, how could members of the church triumphant–the church in heaven–be permitted to draw near to the members of the church militant, to aid them in their necessity, if they did not co-exist at the same time? The church in heaven has earthly representatives in every generation, faithful men, the third angel, who will come to the aid of those who are sincerely seeking truth and light, and will pass by all who refuse that light.
“The angel represented in prophecy as delivering this message, symbolizes a class of faithful men, who obedient to the promptings of God’s Spirit and the teachings of His word, proclaim this warning to the inhabitants of earth. This message WAS NOT to be committed to the religious leaders of the people [HIS PEOPLE–HIS CHURCH–in context].” E.G. White, The Spirit of Prophecy, vol. 4, 199, not to be confused with Testimonies, vol. 4.
Statement That We Should Not Join Any New Movement or New Organization “Should Adventists Join Some New Movement?–[In the year 1893 Ellen G. White prepared this manuscript, in which she exposed the false teaching of two brethren who had prepared and were circulating a tract called the Loud Cry, denouncing the Seventh-day Adventist Church as Babylon. Her message is equally applicable today, for false teachers here and there are strangely burdened to denounce the Seventh-day Adventist Church, associating it, in varying degrees, with the great apostasy described in Revelation 18. The solemn words of Mrs. White should open the eyes of all the honest hearted to the destructive program carried on by the different ‘offshoots’ from the movement. This letter, recently released, has not before been published.–Editors] Review and Herald Articles, vol. 6, 513.
Let us consider some of Ellen White’s qualifying phrases in the above described article:
“The counsel of Christ to the Laodicean Church was being acted upon…” E.G. White, Review and Herald Articles, vol. 6, 513. It was definitely wrong to label as Babylon, an SDA church militant that was heeding and acting upon the Laodicean Message. This was Ellen White’s qualification for not calling the church Babylon. Another qualification for not calling the SDA church in 1893 Babylon:
“When anyone is drawing apart from the organized body of God’s commandment-keeping people, when he begins to weigh the church in his human scales, and begins to pronounce judgment against them, then you may know that God is not leading him. He is on the wrong track.”
So, we may reasonably conclude so far from the article by Ellen White, that forming ANY NEW MOVEMENT, ANY NEW ORGANIZATION, and NOT KEEPING THE COMMANDMENTS OF GOD, AND TEACHING THAT THEY ARE IMPOSSIBLE TO KEEP, THEREBY MAKING IT IMPOSSIBLE TO HEED THE LAODICEAN MESSAGE, WAS STRICTLY TABOO! AND TO DO SO WOULD CONSTITUTE ONE AS BEING ON THE SIDE OF BABYLON! The SDA Church militant of 1893, had not formed a New Movement, A New Organization and thus was meeting prime requirements of a valid church militant in 1893; heeding the Laodicean Message, and teaching and keeping the commandments of God. These are three of the prime qualifications as to why the SDA church of 1893 should not have been labeled Babylon. If faithfulness to these qualifications constituted the church as not being Babylon, then it follows that unfaithfulness to these requirements would constitute the church a part of Babylon, and not a valid church, let along church militant. Notice:
“God has a church. It is not the great cathedral, neither is it the national establishment, neither is it the various denominations; it is the people who love God and keep His commandments. ‘Where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them’ (Matt. 18:20). Where Christ is even among the humble few, this is Christ’s church, for the presence of the High and Holy One who inhabiteth eternity can alone constitute a church.
We find in the above statements that God’s presence is with those who keep His commandments out of a motive of love, and the presence of Christ is essential and can alone constitute a church. Then what do we do with the following statement:
“The church is in the Laodicean state. The presence of God is not in her midst.” Notebook Leaflets, p. 99, 1893, five years after the 1893 article.
“To the end of time, the presence of the Spirit is to abide with the true church.” Acts of the Apostles, p. 55. Now, what if it can be proven that the SDA Church in 1999 [and on], is teaching that it is impossible to keep the commandments of God, and has thereby broken their covenant relationship with God, and has thereby REMOVED GOD’S PRESENCE, and has formed an apostate New Movement, New Organization, “AMONG”, WITHIN,” Seventh-day Adventism, that “would permit nothing to stand in its way.”