The Caldwell Seventh-day Adventist Church tried a new experiment this last month. Instead of the typical evangelistic series we opened The Community Bible Study. This approach, with two studies conducted all weekdays at noon and 6pm for three full weeks, is much more, low key than traditional series, and uses a study format with question and answers filled out on printed lessons. Instead of Revelation and Prophecy, the main theme is Righteousness by Faith. Doctrines including our unique truths are presented but in a Relational framework.
Another part of the experiment was trying more direct advertising to invite people to join. We asked members to invite friends and neighbors. Actually none of our guests came from this method. Several weeks prior we went door to door with a community survey that offered Bible study as one of its options, and when interest was demonstrated we gave invitation cards to The Community Bible Study. We invited the entire congregation to join us in this effort. I would like to thank, Casey Baker, Ramon Fernandez, Josh Hester, Nathan Hobbs, Donna Gonzales, Roy Johnson, Lois Moore, and Josh Ro who went door to door with me. Josh Hester, doing Bible work for us for a few weeks this summer, also contacted inactive members, non-member spouses, non- baptized attenders, and others who might benefit from Continue reading
Life Journals provide an easy way for you to keep a record of what God reveals to you as you read through the Bible. By using the four easy steps for journaling – S cripture, O bservation, A pplication & P rayer (S.O.A.P.), you will be able to respond to God’s Word daily and keep a record of what God reveals to you. And in one year, you will have read & responded your way through the entire Bible. Choose Life!
We call it “Doing LIFE Together.” Consider what it would mean if everyone were reading together and working their way through the Bible together -growing together. The LIFE Journal is a way in which we can do that. It’s all about having a personal devotional life. The how-to’s are there, the reasons are there, it’s now just about having the personal discipline to follow-through and really grow with God like you’ve never grown before! You can download the podcast and listen, or do it yourself.
To learn more CLICK HERE
I thought I had a pretty good grasp of the Book of Revelation. But when I took on a special project to study Revelation 12 and see if there was evidence of Historicism, I discovered some amazing things that have given me Continue reading
“Our job is not to make secular people spiritual but to go after the secular people God is making spiritual. Paul says in 1 Corinthians 2:13-15 that spiritual things are spiritually discerned. God gets there first, then we are sent to connect the dots, to help them find what they’re already looking for. Desire of Ages page 349 tells us Jesus’ disciples ministered with Him, looking for interested hearers. They were not trying to interest the hearers but to find those God had already made interested. God wakes up the heart and then sends in the messenger (see Acts 2, 8, and 10) and God knew what message is needed to appeal to hearts at end of time, the Three Angels Message of Revelation 14:6-12.”
– Shawn Boonstra, International Evangelist and Director/Speaker for It Is Written Television Program. Winning people to Jesus and the Adventist movement has been Shawn’s passion ever since he surrendered his heart to Jesus almost two decades ago. He is currently in Rome, Italy, preaching to people that God has already made interested and hungry for His message. He Knows What He’s Talking About (H.K.W.H.T.A.)
Rumors were beginning to swirl around our church. Was it true that one of the couples was having trouble with their marriage and even thinking about divorce? The battle in my mind began. Should I say something to them or was it none of my business? What if I said something but it was taken the wrong way? But if I didn’t say something and they later divorced I would feel guilty for not doing anything. They probably needed counseling and since I’m not a trained counselor I was off the hook. But was there anything I could do as a friend and fellow believer to help them with the underlying spiritual issues that were causing the problems?
I decided to pray for each member of the family by name that God would bring peace and good out of the difficulties. Next I asked God for wisdom and courage to act quickly before I came up with more excuses for inaction.
Finally I made the (uncomfortable) phone calls. Continue reading
Gary Blanchard (firstname.lastname@example.org), Associate Pastor, Wenatchee, WA Seventh-day Adventist District (Upper Columbia Conference) shares tremendous insights in this article–
GOD HATES GAYS AND OTHER FAMILY GUY MTHS
Sometime ago a friend of mine sent me a clip from the comic T.V. series “Family Guy” where Peter the man of the house gets injected with the “gay gene.” To the amazement of his family and friends, his mannerisms, clothing styles and of course sexual orientation changed almost instantly. Eventually though his family can’t take it anymore and want their “straight” dad back. So his son and dog drug him and take him to “Straight Camp.” While there Peter learns from his Christian coach that “Jesus hates many people but none more than homosexuals.”
What is most disturbing about this quote, even though it comes from a comedy show, is that many actually believe it. But in Leviticus 18:22 the Bible says Continue reading
“Can you believe in Jesus and in astrology? The answer is a resounding yes, according to a study that shows Americans’ beliefs to be more complex than might be expected…
For example, 25 percent of about 4,000 U.S. adults surveyed believe in reincarnation, the rebirth of the soul in another body. Among Christians, the number drops only slightly, to 22 percent.” Survey finds complexity in U.S. religious beliefs, Washington Post, Thursday, December 10, 2009.
For over a hundred years Seventh-day Adventists have been preaching (from Revelation 13 & 16) Continue reading
- Bible Prophecy Truth website- Amazing resources at your fingertips from from Amazing Facts.
- Ellen White Answers- Provides good research to answer attacks on Ellen White and her writings. Maintained by Professor Jud Lake from Southern Adventist University.
- Dwight Nelson Sermon Series on The Temple- (Aug-Dec 09). Includes hot topics such as Creation/Evolution, Homosexuality, Nostradamus, etc.
- The Bible and Evolution article- Outstanding, simplified evidence and reasoning believers can share with skeptics.
- Creation Sabbath Resources- Great stuff, even after the fact!
- The Liberty Blog- Great up-to-date analysis of Continue reading
“This is the best, most spiritual book on dealing with church conflict I have ever read,” said John Freedman, Washington Conference President a couple weeks ago to all of his pastors. “That’s why we’re giving a free copy to each pastor in the conference.”
The book Making Peace: A Guide to Overcoming Church Conflict is published by Moody Press and is available on Amazon.com.
Here is a review, by Pastor Tom James of the Centralia Seventh-day Adventist Church District, that was read to the pastors.
“Making Peace is more about Spiritual Growth than about conflict. Van Yperen is a skillful writer who argues that conflict in the church is controlled by God to bring about Spiritual Growth and Renewal. Rather than viewing conflict as the problem, Van Yperen shows that conflict is Continue reading
There are two tuition-free Andrews Seminary intensive classes this fall on the campus of Walla Walla University. Each is outstanding and can be taken for credit or audit by pastors or lay members. Check with your Conference Ministerial Director for approval then sign up on the link below and go for it!
- Defending Adventist Fundamental Beliefs www.SDAforme.com (or sda4me.com). Various articles and discussions with Dale Ratzlaff, Desmond Ford and other on topics such as the Sabbath, Ellen White, Pre-Advent Judgment, the Gospel, the Law and Final Events. Maintained by Martin Weber, Communications Director for the Mid-America Union.
- Creation, Faith & Science. Seventh-day Adventist World Church President Jan Paulsen’s recent statement on faith, science and creation.
- Which Old Testament laws have universal application and which were for the Children of Israel? Jacques Doukhan shares a Bible study on this important topic in a 2006 issue of Shabbat Shaloam titled “The Torah: The Law of God”
- Clergy Sexual Abuse. Hope of Survivors Ministry (www.thehopeofsurvivors.com) helps victims of pastoral sexual abuse. This video clip describes the need for this ministry.
- When God disciplines us. When God chisels the dead weight out of our lives it can be very painful. In one of their most requested skits, Tommy and Eddie (“The Skit Guys” at www.theskitguys.com) give a very creative look at a typical believer having to go through the process of discipline. Click to watch video clip.
- Preach better sermons. www.BetterSermons.org provides Adventist tools for better preaching such as sermon outlines, videos, etc.
- Plusline Resources. If you haven’t checked out www.plusline.org recently you’ll be amazed at how you can find almost any North American Division event, resource, article or piece of information there.
Have you ever wondered, perhaps not aloud, why God allowed some things into the Bible? Why was there a need for all those geneologies? Wouldn’t it be better if the Rich Man & Lazarus parable had been left out? Do we need the record of mass killings in the Old Testament? And why in the world was Colossians 2:16 included, especially when God knew that at the end of time there would be such vicious attacks against the seventh-day Sabbath? Continue reading
“Cool and collected, Kavya Shivashankar wrote out every word on her palm and always ended with a smile. The 13-year-old Kansas girl saved the biggest smile for last, when she rattled off the letters to “Laodicean” to become the nation’s spelling champion… After spelling the winning word, which means lukewarm or indifferent in religion or politics, Kavya got huge hugs from her father, mother and little sister.” “Kansas girl rides ‘Laodicean’ to National Spelling Bee victory” USA Today May 28, 2009.
How else do you spell “Laodicean”? See Revelation 3:14-22. For well over 100 years Seventh-day Adventists have had inspired counsel that tells us “Laodicean” means–
- To have great Biblical light and many opportunities yet not appreciate them. (Review & Herald, March 11, 1902)
- To be an “idler” in the Lord’s vineyard. (Manuscript 26, 1905)
- To think one has all the truth, who takes pride in their knowledge of the Word of God, while its sanctifying power has not been felt in their lives.(Review & Herald July 23, 1889)
- All who profess to keep the law of God, and yet are not doers of it. We are not to be selfish in anything. (Review & Herald Oct. 17, 1899).
- Those whose religious experience is insipid, who do not bear decided witness in favor of the truth (Letter 98, 1901).
- The ardor of the first love has lapsed into a selfish egotism. Continue reading
Have you ever had questions or doubts about how to best deal with Colossians 2:16 “Therefore do not let anyone judge you by what you eat or drink, or with regard to a religious festival, a New Moon celebration or a Sabbath day” (NIV)?
But not anymore. I just finished reviewing Judging the Sabbath: Discovering What Can’t Be Found in Colossians 2:16 by Ron du Preez, published in 2008 by Andrews University Press (Berrien Springs, MI). Continue reading
Editor’s Note- Marcy Perry, an Earliteen Sabbath School Leader, Pathfinder Staff member, wife, mom, and member of the Meadow Glade Seventh-day Adventist Church (OR Conf) has helped prepare more than twenty young people for baptism in the past six weeks (that right, WEEKS!). How has a lay member done it?
Four key factors-
- God impressed her with the need
- Her pastor empowered her (He said “Go for it!”)
- Her church member friends helped her with three carefully planned retreat weekends at her home; one for Sixth Grade Girls, another for Seventh/Eighth Grade Boys, and the third for Sixth Grade Boys
- She drew on resources and inspiration from www.YouthBaptismalSabbath.org
At first she talked to the young people about having a baptismal class but school, homework, sports, field trips, music tours and other items kept conflicting with the plans. Most of these young people had been around Adventist beliefs for years but had just not been brought to a decision to unite with the Adventist movement. That’s when the idea for a retreat weekend was born.
At the first retreat fourteen girls signed up. Continue reading