The following is a response I posted on a blog I found criticizing the Seventh-day Adventist church. As usual, there were a lot of erroneous statements as well as much undue focus on Ellen White. You may find it interesting to see what some misinformed people believe about the Seventh-day Adventist church. The original post can be found by clicking here.
Wow, this is one of the most inaccurate posts I've ever seen about Adventists. I hope you did this unknowingly and are not intentionally lying.
1. "The SDA church also publishes two of their own Bible "translations": The Study Bible and The Clear Word Bible." - NOT TRUE.
Any "Study Bibles" out there are regular translations such as NKJV, KJV, etc, which have study NOTES in them. They are not translations. "The Clear Word Bible" is a paraphrase from one man done as a personal devotional for himself, and is NOT endorsed by the Seventh-day Adventist church. Most SDA preachers use the NKJV, with some using NIV and KJV, etc.
2. "according to SDA's dogma, if an SDA does not accept Mrs. White as infallible, they have no salvation!" - NOT TRUE.
I have never met an Adventist who believes or teaches this, and it is certainly NOT the official position of the church. That is ridiculous. Whether one believes or disbelieves the counsel of Ellen White has nothing to do with salvation.
3. "SDAs believe that one can have immortality only on the condition that he comes to Christ through Ellen G. White; i.e., a works program, following salvation by grace with light of revelation through Ellen G. White as the infallible guide to Holy Scripture, apart from which one cannot have immortality.3 Then, at resurrection day, the body will be re-created (necessary because of soul sleep) for all those who believe in White's guidance and teachings (while non-SDAs will remain in "soul sleep" forever; i.e., will cease to exist [annihilated] and will not suffer everlasting torment). " - NOT TRUE.
SDAs teach that salvation is by grace alone, through faith alone, and not of works, lest anyone should boast. Christianity 101. Again, Adventists do not teach that salvation has anything to do with accepting Ellen White's counsel. Adventists do not believe that non-SDAs will remain in in the graves forever. First of all, Adventists teach that most of those who are part of what Jesus called the "resurrection of life" will not be Adventists at all. Secondly, those who did not accept Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour (notice it has nothing to do with Ellen White) will not just stay in the grave forever. Adventists teach that "the rest of the dead lived not again until after the 1000 years" - Revelation, and that they will "have their part in the lake of fire (hell)", and will be in the "resurrection of damnation" according to Jesus Christ.
4. "Christ. Mrs. White: "Christ took upon His sinless nature our sinful nature"...According to SDA, then, Christ acquired a sinful nature! Of course, if this could have been so, there could have been no sinless sacrifice, no hope for sinners, and no Savior." - NOT TRUE.
The Bible says "God made Him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in Him we might become the righteousness of God." - 2 Cor 5:21
So yes, Adventists believe what the Bible teaches: that Christ took our sins upon Himself to save us. He took what we deserve, and gave us what He deserves. Again, Christianity 101.
5. "Therefore, one must keep Old Testament dietary and ceremonial laws, paying particular attention to keep the Saturday Sabbath and the Ten Commandments, and most importantly, making sure to faithfully pay the tithe." - NOT TRUE.
Adventists do not teach that salvation comes by keeping ANY law, but by faith in Jesus Christ. Adventists teach that we should follow the dietary laws because God made our bodies and knows what is best for them, and studies have shown that Adventists live longer and have less diseases than the rest of the world. (check articles about the "Adventist Health Study" by ABC News, Good Morning America, National Geographic) Adventists teach the very opposite of what your post says about the ceremonial laws. Adventists teach that ceremonial laws pointed forward to Christ, were a shadow of things to come, and were nailed to the cross. Adventists also teach that paying tithe is between you and God, and they do not meddle in the finances of their members.
6. "SDAs are not "allowed" to experience assurance of salvation, because then there would be no pressure on them to keep the Old Testament law, as interpreted by Ellen G. White, and especially no pressure to pay the tithe" - NOT TRUE.
Adventists teach we can have assurance of salvation. They do NOT teach the false doctrine of "once saved always saved." Adventists teach what the Bible teaches, that we have free will and can choose to walk away from Christ and away from heaven.
"For if we sin willfully after we have received the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins"
"Now the just shall live by faith; But if anyone draws back, My soul has no pleasure in him. But we are not of those who draw back to perdition, but of those who believe to the saving of the soul." Heb 10:26, 38, 39.
7. "Many rank-and-file SDA members deny that their organization any longer decrees Ellen G. White a God-inspired prophet." - NOT TRUE.
Most Adventists do, and should, believe that Ellen White was inspired by God. It is indeed the official position of the church. Most Adventists do, however, understand that believing Ellen White is NOT salvational.
8. "Yet EGW made numerous false prophecies: that "Old Jerusalem never would be built up" (Early Writings, p. 75), that she would be alive at the Rapture (Early Writings, pp. 15-16), that Christ would return before slavery was abolished (Early Writings, pp. 35, 276), that Adventists living in 1856 would be alive at the Rapture (Testimonies for the Church, Vol. 3, pp. 131-132), and many more." - NOT TRUE.
The Bible is clear that God makes conditional prophecies. Jonah is not a false prophet, yet he prophesied: "And Jonah began to enter the city on the first day’s walk. Then he cried out and said, “Yet forty days, and Nineveh shall be overthrown!”, but they repented and, "God saw their works, that they turned from their evil way; and God relented from the disaster that He had said He would bring upon them, and He did not do it." - Job 2:4,10.
Many of Ellen White's prophecies concerning the return of Christ were also conditional upon God's people repenting and turning to Him, and fulfilling the great commission.
9. Ellen White quotes teaching salvation by works: ""Our acts, our words, even our most secret motives, all have their weight in deciding our destiny ... though ... forgotten by us, they [our works] will bear their testimony to justify or condemn"" - NOT TRUE,
If that statement is teaching salvation by works, then so is the Bible and Jesus.
Eccl 12:14, "God will bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing, whether it is good, or whether it is evil."
Rom 2:15 "who show the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and between themselves their thoughts accusing or else excusing them"
Matt 12:36 Christ speaking, "But I say to you that for every idle word men may speak, they will give account of it in the day of judgment."
10. Ellen White quote teaching salvation by works: ""When any have sins remaining upon the books of record, unrepented of and unforgiven, their names will be blotted out of the book of life ..." - NOT TRUE.
1 Jn 1:9, "If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness."
We must repent of our sins to be forgiven and cleansed. If we don't, and they are not forgiven and cleansed, then we know the "wages of sin is death." This is not teaching salvation by works, but is again Christianity 101.
11. Ellen White quote teaching salvation by works, ""Each one of you needs to ... [be] working with your might to redeem the failures of your past life. God has placed you in a world of suffering to prove you, to see if you will be found worthy of the gift of eternal life"" - NOT TRUE.
Certainly Christians believe in the concept of restoration. If we become Christians, shouldn't we pay back anything we've stolen, or try to make right any wrongs we've done to people in our past lives?
Works do not save anyone, but they do prove that their conversion is genuine. As James says, "Show me your faith without your works, and I will show you my faith by my works.", "You see then that a man is justified by works, and not by faith only.", "For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also." - Ja 2:18,24,26. Was James teaching salvation by works?
And as the reformer William Tyndale said: "The fruit that grows on a tree does not make the tree good or bad. It only makes known whether the tree is a good tree or a bad tree. Works do not make a man good or bad. They only make it plain to other men that he who performs those works is good or bad. The man is reconciled before God by faith alone and works are only to make this justification known before men." Was Tyndale teaching salvation by works?
And as Christ said, "By their fruit you shall know them." and "He who abides in Me bears much fruit." Was Christ teaching salvation by works?
Please, I beg you to consider carefully when presenting your views about the Adventist church...take the time to actually learn what Adventists really teach and believe instead of taking the words of other people.
Let's make sure the Bible is used as our sole source of truth.