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4. Gospel Wars

David Shin

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Right wing or left wing? Extremist or fanatic? A rediscovery of the holy grail of balanced Christian living.

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David Shin

Pastor, Hillside O'Malley Seventh-Day Adventist Church in Anchorage, AK

Conference

Recorded

  • December 29, 2016
    4:00 PM
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This message was presented at the G Y C twenty sixteen conference when all has been heard in Houston Texas for other resources like this visit us online at W W W T Y C where spare heads Father in heaven. We thank you for this opportunity that we have to study the Word of God we pray that you blesses Safdar noon her final session for today. You speak to our hearts in Jesus' name amen. Does anyone know what this is the result of stone and it's in the British Museum and about the fifth century a gentleman by the name but told me put this decree out and it's actually in three different languages demoting. Egyptian hieroglyphics and Greek. And prior to this time Egyptian hieroglyphics was never deciphered until they found this and then a gentleman by the name of. John Florence WOD Ciampa Leone. If I'm saying that right. But he cracked the code and because of the Rosetta Stone. Were able to understand it. GYPTIAN hieroglyphics and that's why we have the term today it is the Rosetta Stone It's a figure of speech that we use and my thesis during this whole seminar is that the sanctuary is really the Rosetta Stone for helping us to understand the work of Jesus Christ. All right. And when we as a people abandon the sanctuary as our Rosetta Stone and replace it with something else that is when we start going down a road that is a very challenging one. For our theology. Conversely page four twenty three the subject the sanctuary was the key which on Locke the mystery of the disappointment of eight hundred forty four. It opened to view a complete system of truth it is a systematic theology the sanctuary provides a framework connected harmonious showing that God's hand had directed the great adman movement and revealing present duty as a brought to light the position and work of his people the centuries more than a doctrine. It is our framework for doing theology aren't a doctor is something that you understand a framework is something that you use as a reference point to understand in terms of the work of Christ we describe Christ progression eighty thirty one the cross the courtyard. After a thirty one to eight hundred forty four holy place. Most Holy Place eight hundred forty four to this present day. The theme of the Bible is restoration the central theme of the Bible the theme about which every other in the whole book clusters is the redemption plan the restoration in the human soul of the image of God from the first intimation of hope in the sentence pronounced in Eden to that glorious promise of Revelation. They shall see his face and his name shall be in their foreheads complete restoration the burden of every book and every passage of the Bible is the unfolding of this wondrous theme man's uplifting the power of God which gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. Now we need to look at the sanctuary and understand that the role of Christ. Is dual he's not only the lamb. But he's also the high priest Bible tells us in John chapter one verse twenty nine Behold the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world. Jesus is the Lamb. He is also according to The Book of Hebrews our High Priest as we just read in our last session. He reached after eight first one and two he is our High Priest in heaven in a heavenly. Tabernacle not made by human hands the function of the Lamb and the function of the priest. Now this is an incredible statement from Ellen White in the book great controversy page four eighty nine. Listen to this the intercession of Christ in man speak half above is as essential to the plan of salvation as was his death upon the cross. Now just let that sink in a little bit. Let me read that again the intercession of Christ in man's behalf in the sanctuary above is as essential to the plan of salvation as was his death upon the cross in other words the cross and the high priests Lee ministry all are essential for our salvation. However there are theological frameworks out there today that say you know what it is to be centered around one entity to the minimization or the default rejection of the elder. Please do not misunderstand me the cross is foundational the sanctuary does not progress. If Jesus never dies. But Jesus changes roles after the death on the cross. Jesus is not hanging on the cross today. We are two thousand years after the cross. What has he been doing that entire time. It is in the sanctuary that we understand what is taking place. So these things are not either or they're both and it is the lamb and. The high priest. Now when I studied the history of theology. I noticed that whether it came to any notion that was in tension there was an element. You could just see it down the line. When you look at it through the scope of one hundred years of Christian theology or hundreds of years two thousand years of Christian theology. And it could be described as reactionary or Pendle you see this in the scholarly community. One person comes along and emphasizes one aspect. Another theologian comes along later and says no no no no no that was an extreme and reacts to that and react in the other direction. We've experienced this too in our own biographies our own experiences I meet them all the time. Someone that grew up in a very conservative home perhaps legal istic they get burned by legalism as soon as they turn eighteen. I mean it's just like you know it just the pendulum swings the other way. All right. And then as my ministerial director said many times conservative parents have liberal children liberal children have conservative. Anyways you get the point I got lost there been a long day and a long day conservative parents have liberal children liberal parents have conservative children not all the time but in this reactionary element are now this is the important thing that we need to react to we realised that in every. Extreme. There are elements of truth you fall. So when you react. There are elements of truth in the extreme that you are in danger of reacting to. And you can see this all over the place aren't so let's talk a little bit about law and grace. Here's a theological tension in Scripture. All right. If you center your theology on law to the rejection of grace. That's legalism OK if you emphasize grades to the rejection of the law you have anti I know me as I'm all right. But there is no moral morality is so you can see that there is this element of of tension between the two in the history of Christian theology I read this book in my studies. Here's another tension transcendence and Eminence WA You can actually go down through history the history of Christian theology and see the pendulum going back and forth back and forth transcendent God is beyond us transcended you look at the architecture in Europe. What does it emphasize in these basilicas God is out there. He's out there. He's transcended he's beyond us. All right so this is an emphasis in in theology. So that you have transcendence but you also have eminence God is with us our. He's here. And you have a very bright thinkers that are MANY TIMES German. That that just I just go back and forth one person comes along and says transcendence another person says no eminence and he goes back and forth back and forth you can see it just down the line of history the history of Christian theology are now an extreme of transcendence and example of that is deism. God is so out there. He doesn't interact in our reality no interaction. And extreme of eminence is pantheism or penned in theism. God is so with us. He's in us. All right. He's in the water bottle. He's in the trees in the flowers and it's a form of kind of a melding of eastern mysticism he's like in everything. All right so the that is the challenge that you face and it just kind of goes back and forth and that's extreme and there's variations of the Greens in between these realities. All right so let's talk about Christ ology Oh I have mercy on us are here we go are the humanity and the divinity of Christ the tension between the two are right. Shortly after Jesus died. The Greek mind started to contemplate how do we reflect on the humanity and divinity these things seem so just cannot co-exist in one person and so you had some reflections and you had certain individuals that emphasized the divinity Dasa tism the notion that Jesus was divine and that his humanity was just an illusion. He just seemed human but it was a mirage. He seemed hungry but he wasn't really hungry are just just just to he appeared as being human. But he wasn't really human art so that's one emphasis and then you have on the other side the emphasis on the humanity of Jesus during the Enlightenment period. Jesus was just human a historical figure. And the Jesus of faith is not the Jesus of history and we need to demythologize scripture and find the real historical Jesus he was just. A man. Now notice what happens when you emphasize one and you center your theology on one to the exclusion of the rejection or the minimization of the other you have heresy. That's what you have are specifically in reference to Christ ology if you have a side the divinity and reject the humanity. You have terrorist See that's what it is all right. Now in the Christ a logical debate in Adventism it is not to this extreme but it really centers in this kind of tension how divine was Jesus how human was Jesus specifically in regards to the tendency and the propensity for sin let's not go down that rabbit hole but anyways. All right. And there and the Adventism is divided specifically on that little notion right there was he born with the tendency was he not how human was he see there is this tension there. And I try to dive in tomorrow into that a little a little bit. All right. So we have faith and reason. All right. This is a theological debate that has gone on for centuries. One person comes along and says you know what it's all about the heart. It's all about the experience. Another person comes along and says No it's about the mind. Some people during the lineman said unless you can prove something to a mathematical precision such as two plus two equals four you should not believe it because God speaks to us through our minds. So we have this whole tension that is here is about the heart or is it about the mind and debates have gone back and forth back and forth in that regard as well here's another one justification sanctification are evangelical community. Our brothers and sisters say you know what it is justification alone. It is all about what God did for you. The declaration of righteousness. Then someone else comes along and says no no no no it's about transformation sanctification character development. And this debate goes on in admin tism today as well. Justification versus sanctification now there is an important lesson that we can learn from astronomy. In sixteen zero five. Your Highness Kepler while observing Mars. Came to the conclusion through observation and mathematical equations that the orbits of the planets around the sun was not in the Copernican model of a perfect circle. He observed that the planetary orbits was something different than a circle it looked like a circle but a circle did not describe the planetary motion. It was something we call an ellipse planetary motions are not circular they are elliptical and this is known as Kepler's first law a planetary motion. Now the fundamental difference between a circle and an ellipse is that the circle centers on one central point and ellipse. Centers on two. So here you can do an ellipse at home Areikat to tax go around. Centering it on two central points. It is impossible to. Properly describe the universe or planetary motion when you use a circular framework. It just does not fit it is not until you come to an understanding of two central points that things come into a balance and an observable reality the ellipse. Now my contention today. My thesis is that when we approach these tensions in Scripture. We need to not approach them as a circle stating look it's either this or this but we need to actually approach them as in the lips are and understand the relationship between the two let's take the human nature or the nature of Christ the humanity and divinity. The only way that we can avoid heresy. When it comes to the nature of Christ is through the elliptical approach it is not divinity or humanity. It is divinity and humanity. Now there are aspects of this that are going to remain a mystery and we need to be OK with that. I mean this is something perhaps we will be baffled about throughout eternity. I don't know I mean this is just a beautiful tension and we need to hold them there are right and there is revelation in regards to what the nature of Christ is and what is not but we need to be careful that we do not go beyond revelation and start speculating that's where we get into a lot of problems but this is a very important tension. Wonderful tension that we need to hold in place together. All right. Humanity and divinity. Are we. When we center on divinity to the rejection of humanity that is when we have heresy and vice versa. So this is an important consideration in regards to the nature of crimes. This is also important in regards to salvation. I believe that the notion of justification and sanctification should be held in a wonderful beautiful tension together. And you understand that from the framework of the sanctuary. I mean what we have done in the history of Christian theology specifically in regards to soteriology is that we've all simply gone in there and said you know what when to give a discount on the sanctuary courtyard alone. All right. This is all you need. And centered our theology on that. All right. That's the evangelical framework Catholic framework is more sanctification emphasis by works through the seven sacraments. John Wesley came along and said you know we need both. All right. Adventism said we need the whole thing courtyard holy place most holy place. It is pardon and power. Now if a child comes to you and is naked and dirty. What is the first thing you're going to do you going to cover the child. I know this is kind of a crude illustration but it's only one I could think of going to cover him. All right. But if you have time in the resources what are you going to do after that you're going to give him a bath. All right. And so you can see that in Scripture. There is an aspect of pardon come. Overing. But there is also an aspect of washing you see that in Paul's writing and regeneration because the trajectory of the plan of salvation is what restoration. That's the trajectory. All right. And that's the beauty of scripture. Now there's a lot of this that we can nuance and go through and there are there are individuals that have really reacted to sanctification. Because you know I've been in circles where I heard a lot of sanctification sermons and I never heard a justification sermon not one. In this particular group that I had the privilege of associating with Anyways OK so. So anyway not what. All right so so so there's the challenge and the thing is that if you center it over there you have this this problem where you're really struggling with with assurance. All right. That really becomes an issue and you're wondering you know him in my in justification or out of justification you go through this whole whole challenging aspect right now. Now there needs to be a relationship between the two Jesus declares us righteous the moment that we accept Jesus as their Savior surrender our lives to him. We are justified. Just like that. Instantaneous. And as we progress in the historical reality there is a sanctification element that is continual throughout the lifetime. At any point that you die in the same to vacation process. You are saved. It's not how far you get it's being in the process. So you can have that assurance all along the way you are declared righteous. While you are being sanctified art that's the beauty of the gospel it's a we can go into more the nuances of this but there is this this wonderful tension between the two. You know when I approach a heroin addict. I can tell him you know what your history of sin. Jesus can declare you righteous right now. But it is incomplete. If I tell him you know you are declared righteous right now but I have some bad news if you are going to be a heroin addict for the rest of your life you're never going to overcome this and that is just really really challenging but the beauty of the gospel is that Jesus says you know what you're declared righteous and there is power to overcome your addiction. Now you may fall. You may struggle Bible says a righteous man fall seven times gets back up. All right. There's a difference between struggling with something because of your hereditary and cultivated tendencies and saying you know what I'm going to embrace this I'm going to do this and I don't care. Those are two different aspects in relationship to this own life says it's not the occasional This misdeeds. It is the trend of the life. All right. It is the trajectory that God is looking at it's your intention that God is looking at it. So that's the beautiful tension between these two if you center your theology on sanctification it becomes very anthropocentric performance driven behaviorist driven and so forth. If you center your theology on justification. You really have just a different perspective of the book of James like Martin Luther had All right Martin Luther didn't like the book of James aren't. Why was that because he centered his theology on justification. That's the reality or is it so we need to bring these two and say look it is not either or but both and so here we have the wonderful tension. The elliptical approach found in the Bible first Corinthians Chapter six first eleven such worse some of you but you were washed you know to sink to cation emphasis you were sanctified but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the spirit of Oregon. So here is this wonderful tension between the two in the process of restoration. Here's one that we quote all the time first John one nine. If we can better since he is faithful and just to forgive. That's the part that we emphasize All right. But notice it goes on and to what commands. All right so it's it's about forgiving pardoning and then to calander. You from all unrighteousness. Now would be very clear from the very you know just from the outset justification is by faith. Sanctification is by faith as well. All right. None of our works are meritorious. None of our works are meritorious. They need the righteousness of Christ. All right. This is so this is an important just dynamic that we need to recognize in the plan of salvation or here is great. Conversely page forty eight Satan invents unnumbered schemes to occupy our minds that they may not dwell upon the very work with which we ought to be best acquainted the arch deceiver hates the great truths that bring to view and atoning sacrifice. What that justification. And. An all powerful mediator. He knows that with him. Everything depends on his diverting minds from Jesus. And his true. Notice that the devil does not want us to hold these things in a wonderful tension the atoning sacrifice and an all powerful mediator. It is both of these similar to the nature of Christ humanity and divinity. Justification and sanctification need to be held in a wonderful tension. Our only ground of hope is in the righteousness of Christ imputed to us what is that justification and in that wrought by His Spirit working in and through us what is that that saying to vacation. So you have this this all the way through the writings of Ellen White the grace of Christ purifies while it pardons and fits men for a holy heaven. Moving on through the perfect obedience of the Son of God through the merits of his blood and the power of his intercession sorry for the typo men. May become a partaker of the divine nature. Notice the merits of his blood justification and the power of his intercession sanctification it is both of these the ministry of Jesus at the cross is as essential as the ministry of Jesus as a High Priest in heaven. Both of them are essential to the plan of salvation the book education another lesson the tabernacle through its service of sacrifice was to teach the lesson of pardon of sin and power through the savior for obedience and to live. Now I could go on and on and on but you can see this all the way through Scripture and through the writings of L. and wind there is both of these and when we use the saying Sure. Ours are hermeneutical plans for understanding the gospel. We can see clearly that it's the courtyard and holy place not the courtyard or the holy place. There's a progression that takes place. Another interesting observation is that when you read the Bible. There is definitely an overlap between justification and sanctification they are distinct but there's an overlap. When a baby is born there is growth that takes place immediately or I would say. Even in utero are so so when we talk about things like the thief on the cross. I believe that the moment that he was justified. There was a sanctification process that that process that took place now. It didn't last very long. OK but it's not how far you get it's being in the process. He saved. He saved. All right now when we look at the narrative in the Gospels in relationship to this woman caught in the act of adultery. You see this very same nuance in the words of Jesus to the woman caught in adultery. Jesus said Neither do I condemn you pardon go and sin no more. Power. All right now. That was not so much a command but a promise. All right. Neither do I condemn you pardon go and sin no more. So Jesus in relationship to this woman is stating in the nuances very simply. But yet so profoundly. Pardon and power. Now the beauty of this picture. It shows us exactly how Jesus relates to us all right. When we sin many times we have this image of God. Just very angry or out to get us so forth. It's a lot of shame. However in this picture you see exactly how God deals with us. Harden and power. Both of them together. Pardon. You for your sin and power to overcome. Now I've said a lot and I want to open it up for some questions and dialogue. Before we progress any any questions or comment. Yes. Yes yes. Right. Up right. There is an Ellen White quote and I can't seem to find it. I haven't read it I promise. I've read it. She actually addresses that hypothetical situation and she brings out that angels are there to prolong the life. In other words if you sin. God is going to ensure that you don't die five minutes afterwards if six minute after minutes afterwards you would have repented you know and I mean. It In other words is not like oh. Minutes you're gone six minutes would have been extended you would have repented and that to me is is that element of grace that that is there. So that is how we can have assurance in that reality. I believe that we have used a a philosophical framework of understanding the plan of salvation from a static standpoint either saved or not saved are this the static standpoint of a state or it. But when you read Scripture. It is a description of human nature that is historical and dynamic art. There is a dynamic process that takes place and when we are baptized. When we accept Jesus as their Savior all those neural pathways those inclinations they're still there are right and as we walk with God It is not because God's power is not sufficient is because of human weakness that we fall. But it takes time to to form those new neural pathways and as we grow as we mature those neural pathways become firmer and living the sanctified life becomes have bitch. All right this is neuro science. You know I remember the first time I learned how to drive a stick shift car. It was terrible. All right. I was canvassing in Vermont just awful. In my leader came with me. We're going up a hill fifty year. He's like fourth gear shift a fourth too late. Third gear second gear and then I said first gear you know and so he it was just all full. All right. However over trial and development stick shift driving. It's been a while but it became natural. Second Nature. All right. When a baby is learning to walk. All right. I never see a loving parent. That's what's that child for falling after learning to walk. All right. There's a progression that takes place. But as we reach maturity physical maturity walking becomes easier. Right. And it gets to the place physically where. You know anyone fall today coming into G Y C. I mean perhaps you did but it's more like an anomaly. You know it's like oh I I fell. OK so so so I mean this is this is analogous. It's not like oh I had my daily fall. All right. I didn't fall down the stairs today. You know it usually happens every other day or some you know. And so but but the point is I mean this is analogous and these analogies are imperfect but but the point is that God has built us in a way in a historical reality as we learn to depend on him. All right. That Ellen White says in the book desire of ages that through the providence of grace that following God can be like following our own impulses. All right. But but there's a progression that takes place. God can work in us to the place where we love good and hate evil. That's a transformation art but that's a process when we come to Jesus. We come with all our baggage all our neural pathways. You know Hayward and so forth. He declares this righteous and he says look let's go through this walk of transformation. All right. It's not about how far you get it's about being in the walk and drought that process. There is a rewiring of the neural pathways this is not like a metaphysical womb or God comes down and you know has his power come out and then we just get to rewire. Ring of our brain immediately upon justification that would be nice. All right. But those nor pathways are there and there is grace as we learn to walk with him one of those. A very long answer but it was all right. Yes. Oh dear Oh dear yes. Oh. Yes. Oh yeah. Right. Right. Yes yes yes. Yes yes yes exactly. So so really it's it's about the posture and of surrender that that becomes the ground aren't and the posture of surrender really determines the posture of of your intentions. All right. And that that's a thing if we get on this performance scale of disobedience obedience in and out of justification. It really leads to a miserable existence. OK. It really does but if we are in Christ in that assurance. I'm not there yet. I'm not where I was I'm a work in progress. He will get me there aren't then we can be in that work and the posture of the Christian needs to be on this this notion of total dependence are if we are in that posture of total dependence. I'm divine You are the branches you know that without me. You can do nothing. If we are depending on Christ every say. Ingle day. All right. He takes care of the end product the fruit takes care of itself. If you're connected or so. So our focus needs to be maintaining that connection the fruit will take care of itself. God will take care of that. All right. The issue we have is when we start focusing on the fruit production. Rather than the dependency posture as as a Christian or so we have this wonderful beautiful tension of covering and transformation declaration and renewal and God is the author and the finisher of this entire process and you can rest in the reality of who God is through this process. Yes in the back of. Yes. Right. Right. And. Great right. You know there is this element of self-awareness. And. There's statement by Ellen White this is the closer you come to Christ more sinful you appear are so so there's this almost dichotomy between our own self-awareness and the way that God sees us are in other words I believe that the last generation that is translated without seeing death will never from a self awareness standpoint say you know what I have arrived. That will never come across the consciousness. All right. But God will look down and say. Imputed imparted. Covered all right. There's a fundamental difference between the two. All right. Because if we ever get to the place where we say you know what I have arrived are ones to person say you know what I mean sin in two years I mean this is just a fascinating paradigm. You know it's like wow you know. That framework that you come from and and we come to a relative righteousness in other words it's a righteousness that is like imminent. We look at the other person and we say look. I'm vegan they're not you don't I'm saying I eat two meals the three meals. You know we come down to this point and I say I'm I'm better than this person but notice the publican and the Fair see that whole paradigm are there's that self-awareness of unrighteousness. There is the pride of the other one and Jesus says one person walked away justified the other did not. So that's something we need to recognize there's a whole element of self-awareness that we are unworthy that will always be. In our reference point and frame not that we are to focus on that please understand but but that's going to be a framework. But let God be the one that declares but in our own self-awareness. We need to be like Isaiah Isaiah Chapter six you read the progression in the chapters preceeding Isaiah six where he sees God he says whoa to that person. What of that person one of this person. Well and then Chapter six where with me all right. She's got what was me and that's where we need to be are in that wonderful tension of seeing God in His glory and then. That self awareness that there comes from self focus but that wonderful tension of that self-awareness of our on worthiness before him and that's the proper context for our Christian experience as we move on. One more question and then we'll close. Raise. Yes. Yes. All right. But in a little bit early today. The next seminar tomorrow morning. Friday nine fifteen ten fifteen. Last Generation theology and it's a term that twenty first century AD minutes are allergic to. How do we get here a look at the most influential evidence theologian that nobody has heard of it's not Andrea's And by the way. So tomorrow. I am going to in a brief time give a descriptive. Picture of Emily and reasons theological package because that's what it is all right and Emeli Andrius and is arguably one of the most. Reacted to the logins in the modern era. All right. When talk about Andrea his interaction with questions on doctrine. OK which is the most divisive book in the history of Adventism are those those are not my words it's George Knight. All right. Then we have another theologian that came after him and essentially systematized questions on doctrine or it will be looking at these and. And I I want to make it more descriptive and then provide some personal reflections afterwards. Not all my reflected but personal reflections and then kind of let you sit on it a little bit and and look at it from from a biblical perspective but last generation theology is something that in terms of the sanctuary in terms of what it means to live without a mediator is something that we really need to kind of process in terms of our eschatology and soteriology So that will be tomorrow and then Saturday is the Omega the Omega apostasy So let's bear its together as we pray Father in heaven. We thank you so much. For the beautiful tension in Scripture that you pardon us and you give us power. We pray that you would help us by your grace to accept the provisions that you made for us on Calvary. And as our High Priest. We thank you for the work that you are doing in and through us. We thank you for your answer in Jesus' name this message was presented at the G Y C twenty sixteen conference when all has been heard in Houston Texas. I see a supporting Ministry of the Seventh Day Adventist Church seeks to inspire young people to be bible based Christ centered and so winning Christians for other resources like this visit us online at W.W.W. dot G Y C Web dot org Jean.

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