Ira, I know Doug Batchelor...as a matter of fact, interviewed him on 3ABN. He's fascinating, and knowledgeable...his wife and kids are precious. He used to live in a cave in southern California...naked, the whole 'off the grid, hippie' bit HA HA So he's certainly come 'full circle.' He sounds GOOD! just as does Dwight Nelson...which is how we got into the SDA church to begin with. Not long after joining, my mother was killed by a drunk driver, and that entire episode of our lives I shared with our local SDA church (which happens to be the largest in the Southern Union)..it went on radio, and everything took off from there. I had not been in the church for long before I was nominated/elected elder...that should be a big red flag! Have you seen the recent Dwight Nelson video declaring allah is God and regarding muslims as our brothers in Christ?!! Go here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fU6-rKqfigM Made me wanna scream bigtime. I remember right after 9/11, the pastor of our huge SDA church invited the local imam in so we could all 'be friends' and understand the similarities in our faiths. !!??//** (no Christian word equivalent available)
When you really get into the doctrine, you'll see that they believe they are 'spiritual Israel'....and will go thru the tribulation. They believe in Jesus, but they also strictly hold to their 'rules of worship'...no work on Saturday, unwritten but observed-- women rarely wear any makeup, certainly no jewelry -- even wedding rings; Pacific Press is the publisher of most of their books and we learned that they routinely cut out parts of Ellen White's teachings that either weren't scriptural or proven incorrect. Newer editions haven't a trace of the errors.... how like Satan to use a bunch of truth and a little lie to lure folks in.
Remember how Christ healed ALL who asked/came to Him for healing?? Well, SDA's believe in the diet of the Bible, and fairly strictly adhere to vegetarianism....many many even veganism...no animal products at all. Many at the various SDA-owned health and wellness centers across the country -- where the diet is strictly adhered to -- look like Auschwich survivors -- to me at least. They are extremely thin, wear suspenders to keep their pants up and the women have shoulders that appear almost to have 'caved in'. Their personalities tend towards extreme passivity. Please understand that I don't waste time with political correctness anymore; I call it like I see it. The bottom line is that they have a GREAT SUCCESS rate for curing diseases all across the spectrum! They incorporate a holistic approach....diet, lifestyle, environment, prayer.....and the times I've spent at various locations have been times of blessing. Given all that however, as poor as my 'before' photo is, I just don't want to end up looking like the 'after' photo they present -- does that make sense? HA
SDA's hold cooking classes and health and wellness seminars to draw folks into the church. And they work! EVERYBODY can benefit from these classes; they do not try to force anybody into anything. (One major issue I found, though, is -- after traveling the country for them and attending oodles of vegetarian church dinners-- I put on the pounds. High starch, high carbs, their 'fake meat analogs' are high in chemicals, etc. :( Regardless, these hands on classes are effective witnessing tools.
For myself, I like BEEF. Cows B my friends. I have hens. Chickens are Gods way of saying meat and eggs be GOOD 4 U.
Back to the subject at hand....Because of these visits, the adventist community, and my ties to the church, I learned SO MUCH! They take their faith seriously and are the first to lend a helping hand. Wish I could say this about all Christians....they have open arms and loving hearts, Ira! I believe God doesn't ask us what church we belonged to; I know He'll ask what we did with what He gave us. I've learned that, as I get more truth, if I don't apply it, I don't get more. I've learned that the greatest obstacle to truth is thinking you already have it all! I've learned that God loves His children so much that He provided everything we need, and believe scripture tells us that we're judged by whether we've accepted Jesus in our hearts and rewarded by what we've done with that saving knowledge. Paul, if your uncle is saved by the atoning blood of Jesus Christ, you'll see him in heaven. Period. The TEACHERS and PASTORS (of all faiths) are held to a much greater degree of accountability...if they propagate false doctrine (add to/take away, etc) they are judged. (James) Much I don't understand, so I just stand on what I DO understand, and THIS I understand.
So what did we learn from the journey? We left the SDA church, and began holding health and wellness meetings in our home as well as Friday evening Bible studies. I studied thru Univ of Utah for my family herbalist certification (my undergrad degrees are business/admin/marketing and licensing is all in real estate/brokerage, so I had no previous expertise in this area) We've witnessed MIRACLES, nothing short of it. I figure if I can do it, ANYBODY can do it HA HA I remember Jim Bramlett sent out an email regarding our role as ambassadors / disciples for Christ...and Christ's admonition to 'go ye and do likewise...greater things than these ye will do...' It's TRUE! gotta step out in faith and call on the promises of Jesus, lay hands on the sick, put to practice the health lessons of scripture.. Whaddayaknow, IT WORKS!
We do serve SUCH an awesome God! Bless you Ira, Paul, and all doves! Jo
Jo PeckinpaughStill Serving An Awesome God!