Saturday, October 6, 2007

Reviewing the Review

September 27, 2007
Vol. 184, No. 27

This is the most discouraging Adventist Review I have read as an adult. One of the only bright spots was Pardon Mwansa's “Words of Hope”. The words were comforting and provided hope. I was reminded of the beautifully written and intelligent essay, “A Time for Silence” by Steven Chavez, in the Review of April 11, 2006. Chavez wrote, “Only God knows the mysteries of life on this part. Once we learn to admit that our knowledge about his activity is imperfect at best, we will be less likely to embarrass ourselves with outlandish and unsubstantiated assertions.” Unfortunately, outlandish and unsubstantiated assertions abound in this issue.

While this Review is designed to inspire hope and its readers, it fails miserably! I am troubled by the continual reference to Christ's death as sacrificial. The notion that God had to have his beloved Son killed so that His death could make it possible for God to love us and grant us salvation is ridiculous, given the words of Christ in the John:16. It's time that we as a Christian denomination emphasize the life and words of Christ and preach the Gospel, i.e. what is required to establish Christ’s Kingdom, the kingdom that will last forever.

The notion that Christians once converted will never be lonely again is ridiculous. I hope that Mr. Steger, the author of, In My Father's House are Many Rooms, would claim not to have written that title byline.

Daniel Duda's article is strange theologically and unsettling emotionally. He says things like, “My little head cannot be the ultimate source of truth and wisdom”. He goes on to assert that, “Every time God's word, as found in his inspired word (the Bible) is preached, something supernatural, mysterious takes place. People who respond positively cross the line from this world into God's kingdom.” It's disturbing to think the Duda is the Ministerial Secretary and Educational Director for the Trans European Division.

Lourdes E.Morales-Gudmundssom's theology is masochistic. Her quote, “What I find interesting about faith is its inevitable connection with suffering. As unpleasant as it may be, suffering has the capacity to strengthen our faith like nothing else. Here is yet another insight into the wisdom of God in allowing His Son to suffer--” She goes on to say, “It was that suffering during His life and His death that allowed Him to become the perfect sacrifice to meet the demands of the broken Law. And it will be our own suffering, taken in the right spirit, that will create an appropriate longing for that home with our Savior, one from which we will never have to leave.” Ms. Lourdes, stick to teaching Spanish language and literature.

Bill Huck, I’ll let you know why some react to the second coming as though it were a fable. The Adventist Church has been preaching Christ’s imminent return for a long long time. In 1905, my grandmother had to pry my mother out from under her bed with a broomstick after an Adventist evangelist declared the imminent “time of the end”.

Finally, Jan Paulson is to be congratulated for doing a pretty good job of keeping the leaky old Adventist ship afloat. Hang in there, Jan.

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