Gerry Cabalo

Hiding the SDAC sign

48 posts in this topic

My church is about to start evangelistic meetings in a little over two weeks.  A seasoned, "retired" veteran evangelist will be the featured speaker.   Drawing from his

vast experiences, he has advised our board that the sign - "Seventh-day Adventist Church" be covered up and replaced with "Prophecy Seminar" or something

similar sign.  The reason is that he has seen time and time again that too many people would not set foot in an SDA Church if they knew right up front that it is being

held by SDAs.  The Board voted 10 to 4 to follow his suggestion, but the 4 against includes the head elder.  The evangelist has many times polled those baptized in

his meetings and has consistently backed up his recommendation.   He says that if someone were to ask up front if this is being sponsored by the SDAC not to deny it.

He just wants to wait until the 10th lecture (Re: Sabbath) before openly admitting/proclaiming that IT IS being sponsored by SDAs.  Is this deception or just being

"wise as serpent and harmless as doves"?  What do you think?

Stan likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I do not think that it is being wise as a serpent.

I would be interested in a private message telling me who the retired evangelist is, if you do not want to make that public.

If I understand you correctly, the evangelistic series will be held in the SDA Church building.  If so, there is no way that local people will not discover the fact, at least once they enter the building, that it is a SDA building.

If so, to cover up the sign looks bad.

 

 

lazarus, Stan, Kevin H and 3 others like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

that sounds SO deceitful....  GAH

Stan, Tom Wetmore and phkrause like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

very disappointing  

Jesus was upfront and honest.. 

I Stand with Jesus on this one.

phkrause, Stan and Tom Wetmore like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I agree with Gregory. People will know, if they are planning to hold the meetings at the church!

phkrause, Magnolia and Stan like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Please read the first few verses of 1 Sam 16 & Ex 5 and  see if you think God was being deceitful.

A lot of people drive by buildings and never pay attention.

Stan likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In 1992 an evangelist for the SDA church held meetings at a local community college. He did not share what church he was affiliated with until the evening that spoke about the Sabbath. Later, he offered baptisms at a local church that one of the attendees "suggested" might be willing to host the baptisms. My mother was baptized into the SDA church and was NEVER informed that she'd be joining a denomination--she thought she was receiving baptism by immersion because she was convinced that immersion was the "right" way to do it (vs. her previous sprinkling baptism). 

It was very, very deceitful. All the others who were baptised that same day left the church the following week. They felt, too, that they had been deceived by this man.

The Wanderer, Stan, GayatfootofCross and 1 other like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This evangelist has no intention of withholding information until the end.  He will disclose it when the Sabbath is brought up.  And it will be held in the SDA church.  Many will know that.  Some will not who have driven by the church and have never paid attention.  

Btw, what do you think of the verses I cited in the previous post?

Stan likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
54 minutes ago, Gerry Cabalo said:

Btw, what do you think of the verses I cited in the previous post?

Busted....teehee

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In response to Aubrey;  Baptism and joining the SDA denomination are two separate steps.   I do not challenge what Aubrey stated.  I will simply say that SDA rules require that joining the denomination be a separate step from baptism.

However, standard SDA policy does not allow for baptism without joining the denomination as the second step.

However, there are very rare situations in which such is permitted.  An example may be in specific situations that involve prison ministry.  But, even in these situations they are expected to be the exception.  Whether or not they are actually the exception  could be debated.

However,  in the past, some SDA evangelists have baptized without this second step.  Generally the denomination has taken action that brings such evangelists into compliance with standard SDA policy.

However, this question (issue) is probably not a high priority for denominational administrators.  Therefore, there are SDA clergy who may baptize people who do not join the denomination.  These probably do not make a general practice of doing so.

For those who may wonder what my personal position and practice is:  I can not say that I would always refuse to baptize a person who did not intend to join the SDA denomination.  However, every time that I have been requested to do so, I have refused.  I have reminded those people that the Bible teaches the benefits of participating in congregational life and advised them to be baptized in a situation where they intended to participate in its congregational life.

Situations may arise where either a congregation will not accept a person into its membership or policy restricts one from  joining a congregation.  I once told a congregation that I was going to baptize a person regardless of their wish not to allow my baptism.  The final decision was made for the congregation to support my decision to baptize.  However, if they had not done so, I would have arranged for membership under a policy that allows for membership outside of a congregation.

For those of you who teach written English:  My multiple uses of the word "however, simply indicates the complexity of the issue.   :)

 

 

 

Stan likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Gerry:  I have read your verses.  Your question is an interesting one that could generate some discussion.  I am not certain that I would want to get into all of the aspects of it.  :)   I will say that the answers are not, in my opinion, cut and dried.

 

Stan likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Gerry Cabalo said:

Btw, what do you think of the verses I cited in the previous post?

1 Cor 9:19 Though I am free and belong to no one, I have made myself a slave to everyone, to win as many as possible. 20 To the Jews I became like a Jew, to win the Jews. To those under the law I became like one under the law (though I myself am not under the law), so as to win those under the law. 21To those not having the law I became like one not having the law (though I am not free from God’s law but am under Christ’s law), so as to win those not having the law. 22To the weak I became weak, to win the weak. I have become all things to all people so that by all possible means I might save some. 23 I do all this for the sake of the gospel, that I may share in its blessings.

LifeHiscost likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
15 hours ago, Stan said:

very disappointing  

Jesus was upfront and honest.. 

I Stand with Jesus on this one.

ESV | ‎Jn 7:1 After this Jesus went about in Galilee. He would not go about in Judea, because the Jews were seeking to kill him.  ‎2 Now the Jews’ Feast of Booths was at hand.  ‎3 So his brothers said to him, “Leave here and go to Judea, that your disciples also may see the works you are doing.  ‎4 For no one works in secret if he seeks to be known openly. If you do these things, show yourself to the world.”  ‎5 For not even his brothers believed in him.  ‎6 Jesus said to them, “My time has not yet come, but your time is always here.  ‎7 The world cannot hate you, but it hates me because I testify about it that its works are evil.  ‎8 You go up to the feast. I am not going up to this feast, for my time has not yet fully come.”  ‎9 After saying this, he remained in Galilee.  ‎10 But after his brothers had gone up to the feast, then he also went up, not publicly but in private. 

Would you stand with Him on this one?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Gregory Matthews said:

Gerry:  I have read your verses.  Your questions is an interesting one what could generate some discussion.  I am not certain that I would want to get into all of the aspects of it.  :)   I will say that the answers are not, in my opinion, cut and dried.

 

Decisions, especially moral decisions, are never easy nor cut and dried.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We are living in a time where people want to know about end times. There is a regular customer we have that spreads our books out on a table at the Swap Meet. She said that it used to be that Indian people avoided the table, but now they are coming and taking the materials. They are giving out lots of Punjabi bibles. 

There are people who are prejudiced because of their affiliation to other denominations, and there are those who once belonged and are unhappy with the church. But because of the uncertainty of today's world I believe that the Holy Spirit will guide those who have never heard of Jesus. 

LifeHiscost likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's kind of a catch 22.  My experience is that there are supporters and critics on both sides.  Many "non-denominational evangelicals"  are quite critical of the alleged legalism in Adventism (often attributed to Sabbath-keeping); and wouldn't step foot into an SDA church.  Other more worldly (or less religious) folks feel deceived when they go to a neutral location; only to learn halfway into the meetings that the meetings are sponsored by SDA's trying to bolster their numbers and income.

My experience also indicates that over half of new converts leave the SDA church within a year of baptism.  To me, that is the saddest part about SDA evangelism.  Most evangelistic meetings are high energy, educational, and entertaining.  And then the evangelist team leaves; and people are stuck in a church much less exciting than the evangelist meetings; or are confronted by  the "saints" who brow beat them with the "thou shalt nots" (about smoking drinking, eating meat, wearing jewelry or what they consider immodest clothing [like slacks on women, or how to "perfectly" keep Sabbath].  Much SDA literature (especially the older stuff) focuses on keeping people in fear of God's wrath rather than keeping them in love with Christ and confident in His forgiveness and mercy.  Many SDA churches also discourage anything charismatic like raising or clapping of hands, dancing around during praise music, and prayer languages; which discourages many younger and "enthusiastic" worshippers.

My personal opinion is that public evangelism should be conducted in order to bring people to a saving relationship with Christ; not necessarily a relationship with a denomination.  Therefore, joining the SDA denomination should not be a "default" second step after baptism.  Just my opinion.

Aubrey likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Our church is currently holding a Revelation evangelism series. It is being well attended even on a Saturday night. In our church with a well lit sign visible at the street identify it as an Adventist Church.  No subterfuge. Not even for the initial meetings or promotions.  Everyone walking in can't miss that this is an Adventist Church, including the 40 or so registered regular attendees that are not Adventists. 

Magnolia, phkrause and JoeMo like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well and good.  But I wonder how many Baptists or Church of Christ members are staying away because it is known to be sponsored by SDAs?

Btw, what area of the country is this in?  Baptists are among the most difficult to reach where I am.

And how would you react if the one leading out recommended that the SDA sign be covered up?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Why worry about the Baptists and the Church of Christ? As you eat the ripest berries on the bush first, minister to those first in whose hearts the Holy Spirit has been moving.

LifeHiscost, GayatfootofCross and CoAspen like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Good point Gail, but where I am, most of the people are Baptists.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A company was presented before me under the name of Seventh-day Adventists, who were advising that the banner or sign which makes us a distinctive people should not be held out so strikingly; for they claimed it was not the best policy in securing success to our institutions. This distinctive banner is to be borne through the world to the close of probation. ,,,,,,,, I saw some reaching out their hands to remove the banner, and to obscure its significance. . . .  {2SM 385.2}

We are Seventh-day Adventists. Are we ashamed of our name? We answer, No, no! We are not. It is the name the Lord has given us. It points out the truth that is to be the test of the churches....That this may be, we must look ever to Jesus.  {FLB 304.4}  

The name Seventh-day Adventist carries the true features of our faith in front, and will convict the inquiring mind. Like an arrow from the Lord's quiver, it will wound the transgressors of God's law, and will lead to repentance toward God and faith in our Lord Jesus Christ.  {FLB 304.5}

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The current print issue of ADVENTIST TODAY is focused on evangelism.  It has some articles that are quite revelant to this discussion.


In short:  Public evangelism, as cited here.  attracts a sub-set of people and should be used.  However, it does not reach other sectors of society.  If we are to reach everyone, we must use other methods.

 

JoeMo likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Gregory; I have not usually seen baptisms separated from joining the church. That is a new one for me. Most crusades I have seen offer a dual appeal to both join the denomination, and to be baptized all in the same breath. You mentioned "policies" or "rules" of some kind that do not allow this? I am not so sure how widely practiced those policies or rules are. I have seen the odd "profession of faith" without baptism, but also as a way of "joining the church." Its always confused me, and when I was doing Literature Evangelism, I got into hot water a few times, because I did not get enough people "joining the church." Seems that my apriori of helping people to know Jesus was somewhat taboo, without the dual appeal for both joining and being baptized. What rules or policies are you referring to, and are they current rules, or recently made ones?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I do not know that it is deceitful in the absolute sense but it may appear deceitful to some. Having initial meetings in a public place may hold some advsntages. But  I have had one public place cancel our meetings. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 hours ago, jackson said:

A company was presented before me under the name of Seventh-day Adventists, who were advising that the banner or sign which makes us a distinctive people should not be held out so strikingly; for they claimed it was not the best policy in securing success to our institutions. This distinctive banner is to be borne through the world to the close of probation. ,,,,,,,, I saw some reaching out their hands to remove the banner, and to obscure its significance. . . .  {2SM 385.2}

We are Seventh-day Adventists. Are we ashamed of our name? We answer, No, no! We are not. It is the name the Lord has given us. It points out the truth that is to be the test of the churches....That this may be, we must look ever to Jesus.  {FLB 304.4}  

The name Seventh-day Adventist carries the true features of our faith in front, and will convict the inquiring mind. Like an arrow from the Lord's quiver, it will wound the transgressors of God's law, and will lead to repentance toward God and faith in our Lord Jesus Christ.  {FLB 304.5}

What is the purpose of concealing the sign initially?  Is it because we are ashamed of the name?  Is it to deceive people?

"At some of our camp-meetings, strong companies of workers have been organized to go out into the city and its suburbs to distribute literature and invite people to the meetings. By this means hundreds of persons were secured as regular attendants during the last half of the meeting, who otherwise might have thought little about it. We must take every justifiable means of bringing the light before the people.…"
 
White, E. G. (1915). Gospel Workers (pp. 401–402). Review and Herald Publishing Association.
 
"From the light given me by the Lord, I have a warning to present to our brethren. Do not wise generals keep their movements strictly secret, lest the enemy shall learn their plans, and work to counteract them? If the enemy has no knowledge of their movements, they have an advantage."
 
White, E. G. (1946). Evangelism (p. 125). Review and Herald Publishing Association.
 
"You need not feel that all the truth is to be spoken to unbelievers on any and every occasion. You should plan carefully what to say and what to leave unsaid. This is not practicing deception; it is to work as Paul worked. He says, “Being crafty, I caught you with guile.” You must vary your labor, and not have one way which you think must be followed at all times and in all places."
 
White, E. G. (1946). Evangelism (pp. 125–126). Review and Herald Publishing Association.
 
Let me ask again, is God being deceptive or ashamed of the truth in the three scripture references I cited?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now

Mega Footer

You can configure this content inside your ACP under Customization > Edit > Mega Footer.

Mega Footer

You can configure this content inside your ACP under Customization > Edit > Mega Footer.