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4. Gospel Wars

David Shin

Description

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

Presenter

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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Let’s bow our heads. Father in Heaven, we thank You for this opportunity that we have to study the Word of God and pray that You’d bless us this afternoon, Your final session for today. May You speak to our hearts. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

 

Does anyone know what this is? It’s the Rosetta Stone, and it’s in the British Museum, and about the fifth century, a gentleman by the name of Ptolemy put this decree out, and it’s actually in three different languages, demotic, 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 Jean-Francois Champollion, I don’t know if I’m saying that right, but he cracked the code. And because of the Rosetta Stone, we’re able to understand Egyptian 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. 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.

 

The Great Controversy, page 423, “The subject of the sanctuary was the key which unlocked the mystery of the disappointment of 1844. It opened to view a complete system of truth.” It is a systematic theology. The sanctuary provides a framework, “connected and harmonious, showing that God’s hand had directed the great Advent movement, and revealing present duty as it brought to light the position and work of his people.” The sanctuary is more than a doctrine; it is our framework for doing theology. A doctrine 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’s progression: A.D. 31, the cross, the courtyard; after A.D. 31 until 1844, Holy Place; Most Holy Place, 1844 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 last glorious promise of the 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 giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.’” [Education, page 125]

 

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. The Bible tells us in John, chapter 1, verse 29, “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. Hebrews, chapter 8, verses 1 and 2, 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 The Great Controversy, page 489. Listen to this, “The intercession of Christ in man’s behalf…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 priestly ministry 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 other.” 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 2,000 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 study the history of theology, I noticed that whether it came to any notion that was intentioned, there was an element, you could just see it down the line when you look at it through the scope of 100 years of Christian theology or hundreds of years, 2,000 years of Christian theology, and it could be described as reactionary or pendulum. 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 reacts in the other direction. We experience 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 legalistic, they get burned by legalism. As soon as they turn 18, I mean it’s just like [makes a noise] and the pendulum swings the other way.

 

And then, as my ministerial director said, many times conservative parents have liberal children; liberal children have conservative…Anyway, you get the point. I got lost there. It’s been a long day; it’s been a long day. Conservative parents have liberal children; liberal parents have conservative children, not all the time, but in this reactionary element.

 

Now, this is the important thing that we need to realize, that, in every extreme, there are elements of truth. You following me? 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. So let’s talk a little bit about Law and grace. Here’s a theological tension in Scripture. If you center your theology on Law to the rejection of grace, that’s legalism, okay? If you emphasize grace to the rejection of Law, you have antinomianism, that there is no morality. So you can see that there is this element of tension between the two in the history of Christian theology. I read this book in my studies.

 

Here’s another tension, transcendence and immanence – wow! You could actually go down through history, the history of Christian theology, and see the pendulum going back and forth, back and forth, transcendence, God is beyond us, transcendent. 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.

 

So this is an emphasis in theology, so you have transcendence, but you also have immanence, God is with us. He’s here. And you have very bright thinkers, that are many times German, that just go back and forth. One person comes along and says, “Transcendence.” Another person says, “No, immanence.” And it goes back and forth, back and forth. You can see it just down the line of history, the history of the Christian theology.

 

Now, an extreme of transcendence, an example of that, is deism: God is so out there, He doesn’t interact in our reality, no interaction. An extreme of immanence is pantheism or panentheism: God is so with us, He’s in us. He’s in the water bottle; He’s in the trees; He’s in the flowers. I mean, it’s a form of kind of a melding Eastern mysticism. He’s like in everything.

 

So that is the challenge that you face, and it just kind of goes back and forth. Now, that’s extreme. And there are variations of degrees in between these realities.

 

So let’s talk about Christology, oh, have mercy on us! All right, here we go. The humanity and the divinity of Christ, the tension between the two. Shortly after Jesus died, the Greek minds started to contemplate, “How do we reflect on the humanity and divinity; these things seem so…just cannot coexist in one Person.” And so you had some reflections, and you had certain individuals that emphasized the divinity, Docetism, 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.” He appeared as being human, but He wasn’t really human. 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, the rejection or the minimization of the other, you have heresy. That’s what you have, specifically in reference to Christology. If you emphasize the divinity and reject the humanity, you have heresy; that’s what it is.

 

Now, in the Christological 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 regard to the tendency and the propensity for sin. Let’s not go down that rabbit hole, but anyway. And the Adventism is divided specifically on that little notion right there. Was He born with a tendency? Was He not? How human was He? See, there’s this tension there, and I’ll try to dive in tomorrow into that a little bit.

 

So we have faith and reason. 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 Enlightenment 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 it 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. 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 Adventism today as well. Justification versus sanctification.

 

Now, there is an important lesson that we can learn from astronomy. In 1605, Johannes Kepler, while observing Mars, came to the conclusion through observation and mathematical equations that the orbits of the planets around the sun were not in the Copernican model of a perfect circle. He observed that the planetary orbit 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 known as Kepler’s first law of planetary motion.

 

Now, the fundamental difference between a circle and an ellipse is that a circle centers on one central point. An ellipse centers on two. So here…You can do an ellipse at home. Get to tacks, 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 balanced 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 an ellipse 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 okay 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. And there is revelation in regards to what the nature of Christ is and what it 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, a wonderful tension that we need to hold in place together, humanity and divinity. 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 Christ.

 

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 essentially gone in there and said, “You know what, we’re going to give a discount on the sanctuary, courtyard alone. This is all you need,” and centered our theology on that. That’s the Evangelical framework. Catholic framework is more sanctification, emphasis by works through the seven sacraments.

 

John Wesley came along and said we need both. 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’re going to cover the child. I know this is kind of a crude illustration, but it’s the only one I could think of. You are going to cover him. But if you have time and the resources, what are you going to do after that? You’re going to give him a bath. And so you can see that in Scripture, there is an aspect of pardon covering, but there’s 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. And that’s the beauty of Scripture.

 

Now, there’s a lot of this that we can nuance and go through, and 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.

 

So, anyway, not one! So there is the challenge, and the thing is, that if you center it over there, you have this problem where you’re really struggling with assurance. That really becomes an issue. And you’re wondering, “Am I in justification or out of justification?” You go through this whole challenging aspect.

 

Now, there needs to be a relationship between the two. Jesus declares us righteous the moment that we accept Jesus as our Savior, surrender our lives to Him, we are justified, just like that [snaps fingers], 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 sanctification 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. That’s the beauty of the gospel.

 

And so, we can go into more of the nuances of this, but there is 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,” [snaps fingers], “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. You are going to be a heroin addict for the rest of your life. You’re never going to overcome this.” 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.” The Bible says a righteous man falls seven times and gets back up.

 

There’s a difference between struggling with something because of your hereditary and cultivated tendencies and saying, “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. Ellen White says it’s not the occasional misdeeds, it is the trend of the life. It is the trajectory that God is looking at. It is your intention that God is looking at.

 

And 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. Martin Luther didn’t like the book of James. Why was that? Because he centered his theology on justification. That’s the reality. 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, 1 Corinthians, chapter 6, verse 11, “Such were some of you; but you were washed,” notice the sanctification at this, “but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God.” So here is this wonderful tension between the two in the process of restoration.

 

Here’s one that we quote all the time, 1 John 1:9, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive.” That’s the part that we emphasize, but notice it goes on, “and to” (what?) “cleanse,” all right? So it’s about forgiving, pardoning, and “to cleanse [us] from all unrighteousness.” Now, I want to be very clear here from the outset. Justification is by faith; sanctification is by faith as well. None of our works are meritorious. None of our works are meritorious. They need the righteousness of Christ. So, this is an important dynamic that we need to recognize in the plan of salvation.

 

All right, here is The Great Controversy, page 488, “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 archdeceiver hates the great truths that bring to view an atoning sacrifice” (What’s that? Justification) “and an all-powerful mediator. He knows that with him everything depends on his diverting minds from Jesus and His truth.”

 

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’s sanctification. So you have 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 that type-o, “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 our 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 Saviour for obedience unto life.” Now, I could on and on and on, but you can see this all the way through Scripture and through the writings of Ellen White. There is both of these, and when we use the sanctuary as our hermeneutical lens 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’s born, there is growth that takes place immediately, or I would say even in utero. So, when we talk about things like the thief on the cross, I believe that the moment he was justified, there was a sanctification process that took place. Now, it didn’t last very long, okay, but it’s not how far you get, it’s being in the process. He’s saved. He’s saved.

 

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. Now, that was not so much a command but a promise. “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. When we sin, many times we have this image of God just very angry or out to get us, so forth. There’s a lot of shame. However, in this picture, you see exactly how God deals with us: Pardon 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 dialog before we progress. Any questions or comment? Yes.

 

AUDIENCE: [Inaudible]

 

Yes, right…There’s an Ellen White quote, and I can’t seem to find it. I’ve 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 minutes afterwards you would have repented. You know what I mean? In other words, it’s not like, “Uh, five minutes, you’re gone,” if six minutes would have been extended, you would have repented. And that, to me, is that element of grace that is there. So that is how we can have assurance in that reality.

 

I believe that we have used a philosophical framework of understanding the plan of salvation from a static standpoint, either saved or not saved. There’s this static standpoint of a state. But when you read Scripture, it is a description of human nature that is historical and dynamic. There’s a dynamic process that takes place, and when we are baptized, when we accept Jesus as our Savior, all those neuropathways, those inclinations – they’re still there. And as we walk with God, it is not because God’s power is not sufficient, it is because of human weakness that we fall. But it takes time to form those new neuropathways, and as we grow, as we mature, those neuropathways become firmer, and living the sanctified life becomes habitual. This is neuroscience.

 

I remember the first time I learned how to drive a stick-shift car; it was terrible. I was canvassing in Vermont. It was just awful, and my leader came with me. We’re going up a hill, fifth gear, he’s like, “fourth gear, shift to fourth, too late. Third gear, second gear,” and then I said, “First gear,” you know, and it was just awful. However, over trial and development, stick-shift driving, it’s been awhile, but it became natural? Second-nature?

 

When a baby’s learning to walk, I never see a loving parent that swats that child for falling after learning to walk. 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, uh…Anyone fall today, coming in to GYC? I mean, perhaps you did, but it’s more like an anomaly. You know, like, “Oh, I fell.” So, I mean, 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? “Usually it happens every other day,” or something. But the point is, I mean, this is analogous, and these analogies are imperfect, but the point is that God has built us in a way, in a historical reality, as we learn to depend on Him, that Ellen White says in the book The Desire of Ages, that through the providence of grace, that following God can be like following our own impulses. 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, but that’s a process.

 

When we come to Jesus, we come with all our baggage, all our neuropathways, haywire and so forth. He declares us righteous, and He says, “Look, let’s go through this walk of transformation.” It’s not about how far you get; it’s about being in the walk, and throughout that process, there is a rewiring of the neuropathways. This is not like a metaphysical “boom” where God comes down and has His power come out, and then we just get a rewiring of our brain immediately upon justification. That would be nice, but those neuropathways are there, and there is grace as we learn to walk with Him. I know that was a very long answer, but anyways.

 

All right, yes.

 

AUDIENCE: I think one thought that we as conservatives seem to have is, yes, our obedience is not meritorious…but our discipline use, do I call it “dis-meritorious”? You know what I mean? If so, yeah, I don’t get any brownie points for obeying…Kind of like the guy who got hit by the bus…but what I’m seeing is, is that for the person who is surrendered, that’s a critical point, for the person who is surrendered, they are covered Jesus, and their disobedience or obedience is no longer…as long as they surrender….the bus guy.

 

DAVID SHIN: Yes, yes, exactly. So, really, it’s about the posture of surrender that becomes the ground, and the posture of surrender really determines the posture of your intentions, and that’s the thing. If we get on this performance scale of disobedience, obedience, in and out of justification, it really leads to a miserable existence, okay? 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’ll get me there,” then we can be in that work. And the posture of the Christian needs to be on this notion of total dependence.

 

If we are in that posture of total dependence, “I am the vine; you are the branches,” you know, “Without Me, you can do nothing,” if we are depending on Christ every single day, He takes care of the end product. The fruit takes care of itself if you’re connected. So our focus needs to be maintaining that connection. The fruit will take care of itself. God will take care of that. The issue we have is when we start focusing on the fruit production rather than the dependency posture as a Christian.

 

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 there.

 

AUDIENCE: I work with a lot of good people who have mental health issues, especially schizophrenics and bipolar, and it is a classic view that when they are feeling good, they don’t take their medicine. And it’s after a period of time the medicine runs out of their systems that they go back to old behaviors, that…in the first place as far as…And I feel that, as Christians, we do that sometimes because we get into this thing where we feel like we’re doing so well that we stop doing the things that brought us to the place where we, technically, I guess, for all intents and purposes, were doing well. And then it takes us that time to get back to God. You know, like, by searching and finding. You know, we lost some in a day, and it takes three weeks to get it back. And I feel like it’s at that point that people say, “Oh, well, you know, it’s about grace.” I feel like they’re…not everybody, I don’t know their part, but I feel like that’s where some of us are when we say things like that. We feel like things are going well, but you don’t know how far you are sometimes until life happens to you, and then you realize, “Oh, my. I haven’t seen God in….”

 

DAVID SHIN: Right, right. You know, there is this element of self-awareness, and there’s a statement by Ellen White that says the closer you come to Christ, the more sinful you will appear. So there’s this almost dichotomy between our own self-awareness and the way that God sees us. 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’ve arrived.” That will never come across the consciousness, but God will look down and say, “Imputed, imparted, covered.” There’s a fundamental difference between the two, because if we ever get to the place where we say, “You know what? I’ve arrived,” I heard one person say, “I haven’t sinned in two years,” I mean this is just a fascinating paradigm. It’s like, “Wow,” that framework that you come from, and we come to a relative righteousness.

 

In other words, it’s a righteousness that is like immanent. We look at the other person, and we say, “Look, I’m vegan; they’re not.” You know what I’m saying? “I eat two meals; they eat three meals.” We come down to this point, and we say, “I’m better than this person,” but notice the publican and the Pharisee, that old paradigm. There’s that self-awareness of unrighteousness, there’s 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 the whole element of self-awareness, that we are unworthy, that we’ll always be in our reference point and frame, not that we are to focus on that, please understand, 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 6, you read the progression, and the chapters preceding Isaiah 6 where he sees God, he says, “Woe to that person,” “Woe to that person,” “Woe to this person,” “Woe…” And then chapter 6, “Woe is me.” Sees God, “Woe is me,” and that’s what we need to be, in that wonderful tension of seeing God in His glory and then that self-awareness, not that it comes from self-focus, but that wonderful tension of that self-awareness of our unworthiness before Him. And that’s the proper context for our Christian experience as we move on.

 

One more question, and then we’ll close.

 

AUDIENCE: [Inaudible]

 

All right, we’re going to end it a little bit early today. Our next seminar tomorrow morning, Friday, 9:15 to 10:15, “Last Generation Theology,” and it’s a term that twenty-first century Adventists are allergic to. How did we get here: A look at the most influential Adventist theologian that nobody has heard of. It’s not Andreasen, by the way. So, tomorrow, I am going to, in a brief time, give a descriptive picture of M.L. Andreasen’s theological package because that’s what it is. And M.L. Andreasen is arguably one of the most reacted to theologians in the modern era. We’re going to talk about Andreasen, his interaction with Questions on Doctrine, okay, which is the most divisive book in the history of Adventism. Those are not my words; it’s George Knight. Then we have another theologian that came after him and essentially systematized Questions on Doctrine.

 

We’ll be looking at these, and I want to make it more descriptive and then provide some personal reflections afterwards, not all my reflections but personal reflections. And then kind of let you sit on it a little bit and look at it 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 Apostasy.”

 

So let’s bow our heads 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 hearing and answering our prayers. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

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