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A Response to the Video:
Seventh-day Adventism, the Spirit Behind the Church

by Bob Pickle

Answers to Questions Raised by:
Mark Martin, Sydney Cleveland
Dale Ratzlaff, The White Lie
. . . and

Discern Fact from Fiction

Jehovah's Witnesses, Cont.; Plagiarism

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#100: "In 1982 an Adventist pastor, Walter T. Rea, released this book, The White Lie. It was dedicated to all those who would rather believe a bitter truth than a sweet lie. He loved Mrs. [p. 72] White's writings and thought that he should read what she read. He began to see huge amounts of plagiarism in her writings."—Wallace Slattery.

#100: The book tells you about a bitter truth. The bitter "truth" that The White Lie teaches is a "truth" that is totally repugnant to evangelicals who believe in the final authority of Scripture:

Used in all Seventh-day Adventist schools and colleges as authoritative on Old Testament matters, Patriarchs and Prophets has been accepted by Adventists as the final word. No deviation from this norm is accepted in matters of ideas concerning Creation, geology, theology, or Christology.—p. 73, italics added.

This statement by Mr. Rea strongly suggests that he does not believe what the Bible says about Creation and Noah's Flood. Otherwise, why would he be critical of Adventist schools that do not allow deviations from Mrs. White's endorsement of the biblical accounts of a six-day creation and the origin of the geologic column?

When the present writer asked Lorri MacGregor, the video's script writer, about evidence for the long-ago debunked lawsuit myth (see #103-#105), she suggested that he call Mr. Rea. In talking with him, this writer asked if his reasons for not believing in Mrs. White could also be applied to the Bible. He proceeded to say that he:

  1. does not take the Bible literally,
  2. does not believe in a world-wide flood,
  3. does not believe that God told Abraham to offer up Isaac, and
  4. does not believe God told the Israelites to slay the Canaanites.—Jan. 4, 2000.

Mrs. White wrote:

It is Satan's plan to weaken the faith of God's people in the Testimonies. Next follows skepticism in regard to the vital points of our faith, the pillars of our position, then doubt as to the Holy Scriptures, and then the downward march to perdition.—Testimonies for the Church, vol. 4, p. 211.

Whether one believes in Mrs. White or not, she had a point. Many of those who like Mr. Rea have given up faith in her writings have also come not to believe what the Bible says. It is no longer the authority to them that it once was. This kind of thing is all too common.

And why is this? Because the same arguments used against Mrs. White's inspiration either can be or are used against the Bible's inspiration too (see #101).

Seventh-day Adventists take the Bible just as it reads:

  1. They believe that Jesus created the world in six literal days about 6000 years ago.
  2. They believe that sin entered the world at the fall of Adam and Eve, and that death did not exist until after the Fall.
  3. They believe that there was a world-wide flood in Noah's day that buried everything.
  4. As a very natural conclusion of the above three Bible-based beliefs, they also believe that the fossils in the earth must be those of the creatures that were buried during the Flood.

Mrs. White's writings clearly endorse the above Bible-based beliefs. This is why some Adventists of a liberal bent would like to see Adventism jettison her writings. Generally, Adventists think she was a prophet. Since she endorsed what the Bible says about Creation and the Flood, faith in her writings is a major obstacle to liberal Adventists who would rather see the church adopt evolution. Thus her writings must be attacked.

Too bad every denomination doesn't have someone who spoke "with prophetic authority" about how we should take what the Bible says about Creation and the Flood literally. We would then not have so many denominations today openly teaching that evolution is a fact and that the Bible accounts are a lie. You see, Mrs. White's writings have helped the Adventist Church retain its conservative stance on these issues.

Do you really want to accept the bitter "truth" that The White Lie endorses?

To be fair to Mr. Rea, it should be added that despite his views on Mrs. White's inspiration, he still considers her writings to be very inspirational. He particularly enjoys her Christ's Object Lessons on the parables of Jesus, and Thoughts from the Mount of Blessing on Christ's Sermon on the Mount. Grab a copy and see if you can figure out why he likes them so much.

A Response to the Video

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