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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

Her Predictions and Views

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#35: "In biblical times she would have been stoned to death for being a false prophet."—Sydney Cleveland.

#35: She was a false prophet for teaching that Christ would come in her day. This same charge is used by liberal theologians to undermine the authority of Scripture. The apostles, they say, believed and taught Christ would come in their day. They were wrong, they say. Therefore, they say, the Bible contains errors.

There are some verses in the New Testament which seem to support this attack on Scripture, such as 1 Thessalonians 4:17. Paul in this passage appears [p. 35] to say that some believers alive in his day would still be alive when Jesus returned. Yet this interpretation of his words must be wrong, for Paul makes it crystal clear in 2 Thessalonians 2:1-4 that Christ's return was not imminent in his day.

Should Jonah have been stoned because he said Nineveh would be destroyed in forty days, but it wasn't (Jonah 3:4, 10)? Should Huldah have been stoned because she said Josiah would die in peace, but he didn't (2 Chr. 34:22-28; 35:20-24)? Is this what Mr. Cleveland is saying?

Jonah and Huldah were not false prophets, for their prophecies were based on the conditions of Nineveh's continued unrepentance and Josiah's continued obedience. Since Nineveh repented, it was not destroyed. Since Josiah disobeyed, the promised blessing of dying in peace could not be fulfilled.

At what instant I shall speak concerning a nation, and concerning a kingdom, to pluck up, and to pull down, and to destroy it; If that nation, against whom I have pronounced, turn from their evil, I will repent of the evil that I thought to do unto them. And at what instant I shall speak concerning a nation, and concerning a kingdom, to build and to plant it; If it do evil in my sight, that it obey not my voice, then I will repent of the good, wherewith I said I would benefit them. (Jer. 18:7-10)

According to Jeremiah, some prophecies are therefore definitely conditional.

The Bible clearly says that the gospel must be preached in all the world before Christ returns (Mat. 24:14). If His people are lax in reaching the lost, then Christ's coming will be delayed. In 1883 Mrs. White explained that Christ's coming had been delayed for this very reason (Evangelism, p. 695), and she made similar statements over the years.

The 1883 statement was made just twenty-seven years after the 1856 one Mr. Cleveland quoted from. Since a good portion of those present at the 1856 conference were still strong and healthy in 1883, the latter statement is not an attempt to explain why the former prophecy "failed."

A Response to the Video

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