Horizontal Menu Bar

The War In Heaven

"War In Heaven" - An Actual War!
            When it was explicatively mentioned by one of my Religion professors at Andrews University, on the day following the NET ’98 presentation mentioned below, that the belief that the “War in Heaven” mentioned in Rev 12:7 was (indeed) not believed by all SDA’s to have been an actual/literal war[1], I thought that this was an exaggeration as, at the very least, the Spirit of Prophecy (SOP) seemed to be quite clear about this being a real, all-out war. However, it does appear that such a belief was, and still is, indeed quite present amongst SDA circles.[2]

Michael the Archangel (cf. Rev 3:12d)

In this blog post I will conveniently (though also merely referentially) coalesce the
various expounding and expositions that I have made in relation to the topic/issue of Michael the Archangel. (See e.g., from here and within this post; -See also the supporting websites listed at the end of this posting: namely here, here, here and here)). These prior discussions should be read to get more details as to what will be succinctly summarily stated here in this present post, and further corroborating points and derived deeper understandings on this subject and its Biblical implications will also be made here.

            And as an great foundational study on the topic of ‘the OT “Angel of the Lord” was “God the Son Jesus Christ”’ see the following excellent, systematic, presentation by Mike Winger, from his entire "How To Find Jesus In the Old Testament" series on this topic:

“Incarnation” does not mean “Creation”
-First of all, to get a quite conflatedly (i.e., with Jehovah Witnesses’ “Theology”) confused “(fantasaical pink) elephant” out of this room, the belief that Jesus was incarnated from the Glorious Divine form that He priorly had with His Father “before the “cosmos [i.e., and not just ‘created inhabited worlds’) was” (John 17:5, 24) into a more accessible (cf. 1 Tim 6:16) Mighty Angel form, does not at all take anything away from the Full Deity that Jesus inherently had...indeed just as Him later becoming (also necessarily) incarnated (even lower) as a human being likewise did not take anything away from His Divine Nature. (Phil 2:6ff; John 5:26).

The Heart of the Elijah Message (Malachi 4:5,6)

The Heart of the Elijah Message (Mal 4:5-6)

Malachi 4:5-6 which says in the NASB:

"Behold, I am going to send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and terrible day of the LORD. He will restore the hearts of the fathers to their children and the hearts of the children to their fathers, so that I will not come and smite the land with a curse.”

is copiously cited, and with reason, in Seventh-day Adventist circles as a major part of the Church’s Mission and Message even though that passage is not really precisely understood. It therefore has found a common, almost social, application in that it would come to mean that ‘parents and children would have perfect relationships and/or “see eye-to-eye” on Biblical issues and/or that ‘the youth of the Church would come to be in harmony with the older members of the Church on diverging issues, i.e, dress, music, entertainment, etc,’ or, oddly enough, ‘a lack of social intimacy in SDA families’.[1]  These interpretations/applications do find an, albeit merely homiletical, basis in this text, for “nuclear family dysfunction” was most likely not a crucial problem, if at all, in Israel then, particularly as their then strict and legalistically-hedged, adherence to the Ten Commandments in that post-Babylonian captivity Era, particularly when there was not an ‘“expert’s” sanctimonious loophole’ around the literalistic reading of a Law, (cf. Mar 7:9-13), probably precluded what would be an explicit violation of the letter of the Fifth Commandment. In fact, if that was the object of that Mal 4:5-6 statement, and John the Baptist preached and realized it, then Jesus would soon completely undermine and explode its supposed “nuclear harmony” message (see e.g., Matt 10:34-37|Luke 12:51-53; 14:26ff, 33 = Deut 33:8-10a ff; Matt 12:46-50). Jesus was instead seeking for people who would be boldly singular to restore Israel and God’s Law to God’s initial/original intent and purpose; and it was actually a spurious ‘my parents don’t believe so’ rationalization/excuse that was hindering this ‘collective and Historical Israel restoration’. (Matt 10:38; 11:12|Luke 16:16-17).
            The one exegetically accurate application that has not been seen from this passage is the one that more closely mirrors what this statement was initially meant to address in its historical context, as succinctly explained here.

The Sealing of God's People - Part 2 (Ezekiel 9)

The “Fuller” Seal in God’s Sabbath

            It is clear from Biblical Studies, and from the Spirit of Prophecy (SOP), that the “Seal of God” spoken of in endtime prophecy (Rev 7:3; 9:4; 14:1; cf. 22:4) involves the observation of the 7th Day Sabbath, and thus the law of God. This is in direct opposition to the Mark of the Beast (cf. e.g., Rev 13:16; 14:9; 20:4) which acknowledges a spurious Sabbath, namely Sunday sacredness and effective “lawlessness.” (See also this blog post for more.) However, as it has been seen from a careful study of the Bible and the Spirit of Prophecy, the proper observation of the Biblical Sabbath indeed involves much more than just observing the correct day, in the proper way, but should also lead its observers to do significant works of benevolence towards those in need in the world. (Cf. here). Therefore, if, as it was seen in this post, the events in Ezek 8 which lead up to this prophetic sealing in Ezek 9 speaks of a Remnant People who are seeking to do God’s work through an abominable mixing in of worldly practices, which have all been shown to focus on an adherence to an unbiblical providing/economic system, reflected today in the economic system of Capitalism, then does a Sealing of God’s people in the end time also really depend upon whether or not works of benevolence are done towards those in the world today who are in need?
            The short answer here is a resounding: Yes! as seen in the following supporting Biblical statements.

The Sealing of God's People - Part 1 (Ezekiel 8)

Events Leading Up to the “Sealing of God’s People(Ezekiel 8)
The Current State of the Church

            It is made unequivocally clear in the Spirit of Prophecy that the Sealing of God’s Servants from among His People in the end-time is “the same that was shown to Ezekiel in vision.” (Ezekiel 9), and that  “John also had been a witness of this most startling revelation.” (Rev 7:1-8) TM 445.2; cf. 3T 266.2-267.2; 5T 207.2-212.4; Mar 240. In reading the passage in Ezek 9, it can be seen that the sealing and destruction depicted there is actually the just and direct result of past, blatant transgressions by God’s people, particularly the leaders of Judah. (Ezek 8; cf. 9:6b). If Ezek 9 is indeed a prophecy of what similarly/typically/typologically also transpires in the end with God’s Remnant People, then could it also be that the same transgressions spoken of in Ezek 8, that cause that previous judgement by God, be also committed today by God’s people in the end? The answer, after a careful study of this chapter, and then comparing its issues with the ones in the current Remnant Church today is astoundingly “yes,” and in every detail. This is shown here. It is therefore no surprise that the same unwavering judgement of Ezek 9 is prophesied to also be executed amongst God’s People today.

Advanced Prophetic Symbology

Understanding the Rest of Revelation’s Symbology
            Diligent students of Bible Prophecy, especially Seventh-day Adventist, are apt at recognizing that the message of Bible prophecies are predominantly couched in symbols, especially the book of Revelation. Many of these symbols have been rightly identified and interpreted according to the clues provided in the other, and/or alluded to, parts of the Bible, However several of these symbols have not been interpreted and are rather effectively dismissed as mere, empty statements. Yet, careful theological/bible study shows that this is far from the actual case and the key to unlock the rest of this symbology is to also take into full consideration that God is indeed the God of Creation.

SOP - "Spirit of Criticism" Note

9A. Our Final Test - Note #16 (SOP “Spirit of Criticism” - cont’d)

-Due to posting space limitations, the remaining commenting from this main post’s Note #16 on the SOP's “Spirit of Criticism” statements have been continued separately here. When finished, click here to resume reading in the main post.

1874   Scolding is never allowable; reproof and criticism from parents must have their time and place, but should never intrude so far upon the social life of the family as to render the home uncomfortable. A serious word in private will generally cure a fault more easily than many public criticisms. In some families, a spirit of contradiction and discussion mars the harmony; every statement is, as it were, dissected, and the absolute correctness of every word calculated. It interferes seriously with social freedom when unimportant inaccuracies are watched for, and exposed for the mere sake of exposure. Brothers and sisters also sometimes acquire an almost unconscious habit of teasing each other, half in earnest, half in fun. This is particularly uncomfortable for everybody else, whatever doubtful pleasure the parties themselves may experience.  {HR, February 1, 1874 par. 5} 

            While the counsel here is pointedly upon a nuclear family’s interactions, it most definitely extends/applies to a Church Family. And while this counsel is directed to actual children, just going by the application made by the angel in EGW’s vision here (at 1SM 110.1), it certainly comes to manifest itself amongst “grown-up children”, i.e. : “carrying with them the disposition, the habits, and the characteristics which pertain to children When the expected “adults” in the Church, i.e. the deemed Spiritually mature, usually the positioned leadership, are themselves acting like children, and thus more so are these “grown-up children”, then their unholy influence and spirit defaultly spreads itself upon their respective flock and thus throughout the Church. Hence they become the “False Shepherds” of Ezek 34:1-22, the non-‘Davidic’ kind (Ezek 34:23-24ff), and those who will indeed be pointedly/specially judged by God for have taught/led their assigned flock to regard lightly God’s/Christ’s Full-Gospel/Sabbath mandate and thus ‘trodden it underfoot’ (=EW 36.2).

The Prophetic Parables of Jesus (Matt 24:42-25:46+)

“Our Final Test” - The Exegetical & Prophetic Commentary

            The following is a verse-by-verse exegetical commentary on, chiefly, the 1+4 (correlated) Prophetic Parables in Matt 24:42-25:46, namely:

-Coming as a Thief (Matt 24:42-44) (=Rev 3:3-5; 16:15; cf. Luke 12:35)
(1) The Illustration of the Two Stewards/Servants (Matt 24:45-51; =Luke 12:41-48)
(2) The Parable of Ten Virgins (Matt 25:1-13; cf. Matt 22:1-12)
(3) The Parable of the Talents (Matt 25:14-30; =Luke 19:12-27)
(4) The Parable of the Sheep vs. the Goats (Matt 25:31-46 [cf. Matt 8:10-12])

Chronology, and Texts related to, Matt 24-25 Parables

            The previous “Our Final Test” blog post was actually written about this bloc of parables, but it then deliberately concealing (ala. Dan 12:4, 9-10) presented and expounded this message in the form of a parable (ala. Matt 13:10-17 =Isa 6:8-13), and subsequently with (mainly) Bible/Spirit of Prophecy (SOP) reference annotations added.[1]1 So here/now is the exegetical and interpretational understandings which were underlying that “parabolic” rendition.

           First of all, the following here is a Master Illustration depicting and summarizing the entire ensuing exposition/commentary on these Prophetic/Apocalyptic Parables. The progression, association, relation and/or confrontation between the 8 illustrated entities/institution, and the many other supporting passages in the Bible and SOP, is all indicated & explained in the commentaries below.

Our Final Test +Annotations

Our Final Test
(Matt 24:42-25:46|Luke 19:11-27|PH144 29.2|LLM 341.5|16MR 271.3) 

{Note: See this post for the exegetical and SOP analysis, interpreting and expounding underlying the following prophetic parable.}

            After six arduous and toiling years of University-Law School studies, a group of the best law students in a populous metropolitan area gathered early on a Friday morning, by special request due to their exceptional work, in a Convention Center in order to take their bar exam. These students were, provedly and by self-determination, on paper, the very best of their class and school. At the beginning of their studies, all of the students accepted to this prestigious Law School had been defaulty given an incrementally increasing, significant bursary, as the continued to excel in their studies by maintaining a 4.0+ GPA. Student who were not able to maintain this standard were automatically removed from this Rewards Program. By the end of their 2nd year, all the students with still a 4.0+ GPA now also received even more rewarding, and motivating gifts by being relocated downtown into a luxurious, downtown condo, with all housing amenities and expenses paid. Then upon completing their Undergraduate Studies, as they were to embark into more advanced and specialized Graduate legal studies, all remaining excelling students, still maintaining a perfect GPA, were also given an expensive automobile. However, the additional, stated “catch” in all of this, had been that this would cause them to receive a more stringent final test than others in order to be admitted to the bar.

The SOP Proof Is In The Bible

The Proof of SOP Statements Is In The Bible (Acts 17:11)

            A most valuable contribution that the prophetic ministry of Ellen White has provided is in her inspired comments that shed great light upon episodes of the Bible (see e.g., the 5 Conflict of Ages series books). As many have referred to these, they are indeed an inspired commentary on the Bible. However for those who do not believe that Ellen White was, -through the “Testimony (=Isa 8:16, 20) from Jesus” (Greek Ablative case functioning as a “Genitive of Source/Origin” =Rev 1:2, 12:17) ‘which is the “Spirit of Prophecy”’ (Rev 19:10), inspired and received such true-to-life visions and dreams on Biblical stories from God, it can surfacely seem futile to try to make them see these views to be what actually did occur in the historical, Biblical past. Nonetheless, even in these complimentary “extra-Biblical” views, it becomes evident, upon study of them, that God, fully knowing that such doubts would exist, has still fully provided for these additional views to be adequately corroborated by the Bible. Indeed in most, if not all, of such extra-biblical revelations, one can find convincing Biblical support to show that they are indeed perfectly in-line with what the Bible states.[1]
            In this light, the following Biblical episode is an excellent example of this.

Daniel 11 - The Text

Daniel 11 - North vs. South (=CET 228.1-3+; GC 45.3)[1] 
            One of the most intriguing prophecies in Bible is found in Daniel chapter 11. In it is found an epic battle that focuses on two warring factions, namely, the King of the North and the King of the South. Like any other prophecy, or even simple statement, given by God in the Bible, it is still to speak in some way to His people today. Therefore it is beneficial to study this prophecy even if the exact interpretation may not yet be fully understood. The following is thus an introductory overview in the study of this prophecy based upon several years of study. As proper Bible study rightly first, and foremost, starts with an accurate translation of the text under consideration, from its original language, the following text of Dan 11, based upon the NASB version ([1995 updated version] - the most accurate Bible version available today), has been given. Where a better rendition could be made, it was done here in this text.
            The following guiding introductory pointers and observations from the careful study of this prophecy in its Biblical and Theological context are also here provided:

Jesus Was a Black Man?!?

Jesus was a Black Man?!? (Isa 53:2)

           Concedingly taking into full consideration that the student body at Andrews University was not selected from a pool of applicants from the unfallen host, I was, also based on stories/reports previously heard, mentally/spiritually prepared in advance to encounter situations/incidents that would confirm this fact when I set out to attend the school in the late 1990's. Thus, quite early on, when I found my way out of a cloud of weed smoke, (all the while trying not to myself get high from the thick fumes), I was actually not shocked to have run into this particular “smokescreen.” However, I was quite shocked that, when I went and, already traumatized, began to report this to one of the dorm’s deans, angrily declaring that “My room is full of SMOKEhe, clearly not caring at all to ascertain, if this was from a fire, cigarette smoke or, as it was, WEED (as he manifestly fully comprehended), just disturbedly, mutely, or should it, more accurately be, mootly, shruggingly looked at me as if I had just complained about the building’s brick color, -preferring to “bury his head in the sand”.[1] Evidently, but unsure to me then, a ‘smoke-filled room’ was a normative occurrence on this campus, (self-obviously, not for a fire). So I then here literally, just had to hold my breath in until the smoke subsided; and also at other times, over the next years, when walking through the dorm halls, (especially during the weekends), sleep with a gas mask (due to a later, weed-chimney-smoking “suitemate”), and pray that this is the worst that it will ever get at this, at-the-very-least-supposed-to-be drug-free, SDA Campus. 
            Being now quite disillusioned just one month in[2]|[3], by actually the nonchalant, effectively, institutional condoning of such, even illegal, behavior, {and, as expressed here, it indeed is: ‘at the point where passion and treachery meet, that disillusionment begins’}, I hung on to some hope in an assumption that the “religious segment” of this campus was free from such blatant waywardness. {...but any ‘(indifferent) “love” that would be built on such an overall basis of various lies, would indeed be an arduous endeavor’ =Isa 28:14-15ff}... Well it, quite sequiturly, did not take long for that belief to also be blown away.

What’s in a Localized Name?

I.e., What’s in Localizing a Name?

           Quite briefly said here, -because anything longer would actually be belabouring the point, chances are you’ve come across a believer who is absolute obstinate that God must be addressed, and referred to, according to the Hebraic rendering. Thus God (or is it suppose to be “G-d”[1]) is to be referred to as Yahweh (or is it YHWH), Elohim, etc., ; Jesus as Yeshua, and the likes. Such a point is even elevated to some sort of salvific issue. Well..., actually, tersely said here...: 'Preach that to, even, the Inspired/Spirit-led, Greek-writing authors of the New Testament!'[2]

Commentary: The Ministry of David Gates

The Ministry of David Gates and His "Lazarus Experience"[1] 

Blog Post Sections
David Gates’ Lazarus Experience
- The Spiritual Implication/Application of Gates’ Lazarus Experience
- Conclusion
Epilogue - Laodicean Dilemma
Epilogue II - (June 2010+)
- Gates’ Second Prophetic Campaign
Epilogue IIB - “Lazarus Is Dead”
- GMI Statement to General Conference {Feb. 28, 2013}

GC vs. GMI Decision {May 26, 2013}
Epilogue III - Gates’ 9/11/2010 Crisis!??
Epilogue IIIB - (November 2010+)

New re-Beginnings!!? - (Faith Camp Series Jun-July 2011)

September 2011+ Regretting Relapsing!??

April 2012+ The Rekindled Torch of False “Prophetic” Revivings

November 2013 - Australia Series

September 2015 - Pope's U.S. Visit & ‘Seasons-Setting’

Nov/December 2015 - Australia Series

March 2018: Gates’ Latest Time Setting Claim: “Late March 2019”
=Gates’: “Even at the Doors” 2019 Claim Controversy

[To download a PDF copy of (part of) this post see here (PDF link)]

David Gates’ Lazarus Experience
            If one has a serious interest in seeking to finish the Gospel work, chances are that they’ve come across the ministry of David Gates, and heard his exciting testimony. If not, one can find all this information on his website at Gospel Ministry International. To say the least, David Gates conducts Gospel Missions at the Extreme. This is indeed his motivation. Self-admittedly, he has grown tired of the institutionalized way in which the Seventh-day Adventist Church has endeavoured to finish the work, and he instead preaches and encourages much bolder, and more rapid, efforts, all based upon an implicit and explicit faith on the promises of God, and what God can do. Theoretically speaking, in a Church that quasi-mantra-like professes to believe that ‘Jesus’s coming is imminent... “Even at the Door”’ (as if mere professions fulfill the concrete Mission), combined with the communication technology which is currently available in the Church, it is surprising, even shocking, that David Gates has even had to preach his messages on this topic more than once. Such a faith and action rousing message, which is quite feasible when the numbers are crunched, should have caused the worldwide Church to spring into concrete, unprecedented action. However it still has not.

The Actual Year of Christ's Birth

The Actual Year of Christ's Birth

While the ascertainment of the precise year in which Jesus Christ was actually born may
not have any soteriological implications, it does contribute greatly to the historicity of Christ, and thus a basis for belief in Him. It is currently, commonly assumed/accepted that the Year of Christ birth was ca. 5/4 B.C. (based upon the accepted date of Herod’s death). As it is widely known this date corrected the 4-year mistake made by 5th century A.D. monk Dionysius Exiguus in his calculation of Christ’s birth. However not even this corrected date is the right one as there are several key corroborating points found in the Bible and History that strongly point to an earlier date for Christ’s birth, namely in ca. 8 B.C. Here are these main key points, here quite succinctly presented, but to be expounded upon in greater detail in a forthcoming book on the topic.