Adventist Tomorrow: Will Adventists ever be ecumenical? Dr. Jack Hoehn
23 April 2021 |
Jack Hoehn will lead us in the study on ecumenism, based on a chapter of his new book (2021) published by Adventist Today called: ADVENTIST TOMORROW—Fresh Ideas While Waiting for Jesus
Excerpt from the chapter “What Remains of the Remnant?”
If there is one outstanding metaphor in my youth of being a Seventh-day Adventist it was that of The Remnant. The focus of the book of Revelation appears to be the 12th chapter, and the last verse of the chapter—after dragon wars in heaven, Jesus born on earth, world deception, times and times and dividing of times, and yet still standing after all that is a little band of heroes—the remnant of the woman’s seed.
Who is that? Well, let’s see
- Commandment keepers—who better than the church that keeps all 10 of the commandments?
- Testimony of Jesus—I have nine red volumes on my shelf from the Spirit of Prophecy called the Testimonies.
- Remnant—a little band. We had less than a million members when I joined this church.
My Bible teachers and pastors used the image of bolts of cloth to show us that we were the remnant or “what was left at the end of the roll of fabric.” We were the “last of the good guys.” All the rest of the world and the rest of the churches were in apostasy. But we few faithful, the end of the roll, would meet Jesus with a smile on our face, not calling the rocks to fall and hide us from the Lamb who wasn’t happy with others. They were keeping a false Sabbath. Still eating unclean meats. Frequenting movie theaters, dance halls, bowling alleys. Attending professional sports exhibitions.
Yes, there were still good people left in the apostate Catholic and Protestant churches, but once they learned the “truth” they would renounce their membership in those fallen churches and come out of them into Adventism. And even though we would always be “a remnant,” we wanted to be a slightly larger remnant. Babylon, after all, was fallen. And Seventh-day Adventism was a “truth” people would “come into,” as “coming into the truth” implied getting out of wherever you had been before. I understood that Adventists were not “ecumenical.” We were not going to hold hands and sing “Kumbaya, My Lord, Kumbaya” with people in those fallen churches.
Our job was to get them out of those churches into ours. Other churches were fallen. They had creeds. They worshiped dead saints. They had a hierarchy that told them what to believe. They had leaders who thought they were God on earth, Vicarius Filii Dei— the dreaded 666. There was nepotism in those churches. There was financial corruption. They played guitars and drums in those churches. They spoke in fake tongues. There were sexual scandals
And then the Adventist remnant grew up.
We didn’t have a creed; we had 28 Fundamental Beliefs. We worshiped only one dead saint. We didn’t have a Vatican, we had the General Conference—”the highest voice God has on earth,” led by men who did their best to be God’s voice on earth.
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Jack Hoehn is a retired physician living in Walla Walla, Washington. His most recent book is ADVENTIST TOMORROW—Fresh Ideas While Waiting for Jesus.
Loren Seibold is the Executive Editor of Adventist Today.
How to join:
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The class is intended to last about 2 hours, though the conversation may go a bit longer.
About our class:
- The AT Sabbath Seminar is intended to be a courteous forum. We discuss and ask questions politely. We don’t accuse, get angry, or put people down.
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We look forward to getting acquainted with you!
- 5/1/2021 – David Geelan on miracles