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A Light Was Kindled- Part 4

C. Raymond Holmes

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C. Raymond Holmes

Pastor, missionary, retired seminary professor, and author

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  • June 19, 2017
    11:00 AM
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Father we thank you for this day that you have given we thank you for your presence. We thank you for the Ministry of your Holy Spirit and we prayed that our minds and hearts would be open this morning to troth from your word and we ask you to bless and protect everyone that is on this campground in Jesus' name amen. By the way do you know the difference between an ignorant person and stop a good person. An ignorant person as a person who simply doesn't know something and in that sense we're all anger aren't right. Because there are many things we don't know and 1 reason a lot of folks are not interested in studying our learning more is because they don't want to know they somehow sense that if I know the truth I have to do something about it. And that gets us to the definition of a stop at parson and then or in person is somebody who doesn't know a stupid person as somebody who knows but doesn't do anything about it for example if you know that smoking is bad for your health and you're liable to get lung cancer. And you don't do something about that knowledge your stop it is not right. MARTIN. After all it is. All right while Martin Luther by the way the title of today's presentation is the amazing facts. While Luther kindled the fire of the Reformation on October 31 1517 as I've already mentioned or alluded to he was not alone and had been smoldering for some time as we mentioned the times were rife with corruption and the church and moral love to you among the priesthood was rampant as was superstition among the people Christ was seen as a 1 whole punishes Hilti centers not to save them he was seen as too holy to be approached and someone had to be found who could intercede with him why not Mary his mother but she too was considered too sacred so another intercessor was needed why not Mary his mother and now so people prayed to Anna who interceded with Mary who interceded with her son Jesus. Whole interceded with God the Father for centers It was incredible wasn't it when you think about it. But that was the superstitious beliefs on which people were spiritually nourished. Wholly whole Sanker. Of some of God This was superstitious superstition there was because of all of that there was a growing yearning for a more personal and inward religious experience by the way we get a little bit confused about this. But. There is an experiential side to the Christian faith and I try to bring that out in my book the road I travel now the Reformation succeeded because it came out a time when thinkers sir while Europe began to sense that something was radically wrong with the church and that people were in need of personal spiritual awakening we all ought to Martin Luther as I mentioned he is still 1 of my spiritual hero we don't we owe a lot to him especially his on covering of the good news that we're justified by grace through faith as I was beginning to become involved in the process of learning about 70 Adventism I heard a lot of comments that Adventism represents legalism and I heard something like that before I became involved in this process you know that you've heard that. Then simply because we keep the 7th day Sabbath they say we're legal is that we believe we're saved by our works. Of thoughts not true when you look into the fact you discover that 7th Day Adventists lift up the cross very high you listen to the preaching on this cap meeting it's all cross centered Christ centered or did you hear Bradshaw last night. That was truly Adventism. The cardinal doctrine of the Reformation justification by faith it's a basic doctrine of salvation in the Bible to keep accusing us of being illegal list is just a smokescreen. So people won't look into it and that great Central Bible truth was last Thursday great passion thank God thank God that he used Luther to on cover that biblical truth that had been lost. Buried under centuries of ecclesiastical tradition and dog ma and he believed that it was his mission to preserve that truth and to preach it. Now I want to put a little footnote in right here justification by grace alone is a basic and crucial biblical doctrinal theological issue. But it is not the whole of the Christian faith it's meant the ultimate. Fruit of justification by grace through faith alone is meant to produce a face an experience that is in harmony with the truths of it. And all Luther was the 1 who kindled a fire of the Reformation as I said he wasn't the only reformer. He didn't discover or uncover all of the truth remember the 1st day we met I said the Reformation was a more of a movement a progression rather than an event there were there were others for example William Tyndale an angle on and John Wycliffe both of whom were involved in translating the Bible into English and. Dr Victor Big Bird who wife was a friend of my wife who passed away last year he did. A genial logical study of as background family tree and lo and behold he discovered that he is related to William Tyndale. Not only that he and he discovered. 1 of his relatives a lady worked for Queen Victoria in Buckingham Palace then there was John Huston and Bohemia who was burned at the state for his beliefs his faith in fit in 141500 years before the Reformation. Someone or all in Italy who was executed in 149398 there was a Rasmussen Holland who published the New Testament in Greek and that was used by Luther 1 he translated the Bible into German William Tyndale by the way was burned in England and 1536 and there was John Calvin and Switzerland Philip malign son and wouldn't hurt Alric is when the League of Switzerland with whom Luther dbase had didn't come tended over the Lord's Supper at a meeting in Marburg orange in 1529 and it was a big debate over the meaning of military letter Latin word asked yesterday in Matthew 26 more says 26 and 28 we have Jesus' words concerning the Lord's Supper 1 he said this is my body this is my blood and in the Latin it's asked is so Luther Christ's body and blood are physically present. But Luther never explained hall and it turns out that his doctrine of the Lord's Supper was referred to as Con substantiation as opposed to the Catholic Tran substantiation the Catholic doctrine means that the bread and wine are actually physically changed into the real Body and Blood of Jesus looters of you was. Christ is. Present in as he says with an under the bread and wine and that was debated with SWINGLER at Marburg but Forza when Billy the word asked Are is means signify now while loops are uncovered an awful lot that had been buried under the under the traditions of the dog most of medieval solaces I'm he was only 1 man who lived 1 life time the Reformation that began that day in 5070 and which was as all of White says to increase in brightness until the end is still unfinished business that's why we're here that's precisely why the advent movement emerged from Protestantism over 150 years ago all in order to increase that brightness why I quoted this I think already but it bears repeating. Because in all she says in our times there is what I had deep Archer from Bible doctrine that was on the new 150 years ago and she said. Certainly relevant today and she said there is need of a return to the same underscore unswerving adherence to the Word of God that was manifested at the crisis of the Reformation. Wright controversy to a 4 to a 5 I found a very perceptive analysis that was published in 2004 by a man by the name of John H. called bearer. Spelled K A L B E R E R. K A L B E E R E E R E R E R call there the book he wrote wasn't titled The not so silent merger merger from pages 20 and 21 he says quote The churches have still owed for decades as the mainline denominations of America have drastically changed remember this was in 2004 when he wrote this Methodist Episcopal congregational and the United Church of Christ along with some liberal denominations within the Presbyterian Baptist and Lutheran mix as well as many others no longer stand doctrinally where they stood just 50 years ago following the lead of liberal theologians who have the mythologized the Bible abandoning its authority denying the miracles of the virgin birth and the resurrection and trashing as an Kunj Elian uncongenial and any bad little doctrine contrary to the modern day liberated lifestyle these denominations have betrayed their divine calling to be the true body of Jesus Christ. The Christian church which God brought in to be at Pentecost their membership and finances are no longer where they were even 20 years ago you remember I said the Lutheran Church of I pastored in the sixty's when I left it in 1970 to go to Andrew and have 600 members and now today they're lucky if they get 3035 to church on Sunday when I was there we had 2 packed services every Sunday and the finances have of course dwindle and they can't support a pastor anymore after share the pastor with another Lutheran church in a nearby town that's in the same condition and then called There Goes on and he says Christian spirituality than it shows as well and for those old timers who remain within these denominations there are the very haunting questions what is going on in my turn what is happened what has happened and quote he really nails it it's no exaggeration to say that Luther changed the course of history. His life and witness was a manifestation of God's gracious intervention in human affairs and demonstrates how God raises up both the message and the messengers that are needed at certain points in time now we have to carry on. What he started and remain true to Sola Scriptura underlined that and I say that because we are being tempted to follow that and that's the devil's see because he's always attacking the Word of God. Now we find that ever says of sola scriptura over and over and looters writings. He read and studied the Bible and he discovered discrepancies between what the Bible said and what the Roman Church taught and the other reformers did the same that's why for example they came to the position that infant baptism was not a Bible teaching and I practice that for many years as a Lutheran minister but I remember always having some questions so there was a little bit of rubble a result reservation in the back of my mind because I read my Bible and I couldn't find any examples of babies being baptized. While Luther was part of that Roman Church and with dismay he saw that human traditions our ideas had been invested with authority that belong to the Bible Oh and he saw it finally as his responsibility on what I have a burden that was to you know to begin to realize to help his church put things right reform. For the sake of the trolls and for the sake of the people. Because they were being deceived salt to 1 cover an expose throws from the Bible is to follow in the living stream of the Reformation and that's still our mission and so are calling. And it's called Face full ness you see faithfulness is a corollary. Of Faith. True faith is expressed lived in terms of faithful ness we are called to be an uncompromising voice for Bible truth because there are those in our time who would deny and reverse history no let me ask you how true was Luther himself to a soul last rip Torah and in answering that question I have to share with you my own story of discovering some amazing facts and in doing so calling attention to another reformer who could be called the forgotten reformer because he's hardly ever mention his name once on Dre us karoshi that he was a colleague of Luther on the faculty of the University of Whitman burg for a number of years while back in 197071 at Anders university I I had come there as a Lutheran I hadn't left the Lutheran church yet I was not yet fully convinced what I was interested in is discovering. The facts the truth while I began to dig into Luther's writings again driven by my own personal spiritual crisis and when I did I got a major shock God had already gotten my attention when my wife became a 7th Day Adventists by the way she's going to be here tomorrow because I want to end this series by doing something special and why when she became an Adventist metaphorically it was like being hit over the head with a 2 by 4. When I was going into all kinds of details and they say this whole initial business covered at least 2 and a half years maybe 3 years I often compare it to Moses and the burning bush why was that and I used to ask that. As I pondered that story even years ago why was tot Bush burning in the middle of the desert while the simple obvious meaning of that is it was to get his attention because it was an unusual phenomenon why did God want to get Moses' attention well when you read a story that becomes obvious to God had something important to say to him and he had something for him to do and Moses was all blue B.S. and so God had to get his attention that's what he did to me not as dramatic perhaps but on my wife was convinced and became and I had been a star took a lot of guts on her part. It was like that burning bush experience and the way up until the time when I had gone to Andrews and by that and I say I was still a Lutheran when I went there because up and up until then I had trusted Luther completely if I had a question I checked his work you know his letters written work tremendous set your blindfolds up of Luther's work cost you about $700.00 so if I had a question about anything I checked Luther I had all of his commentaries in my library and I implicitly trusted his brave and courageous assertion given the circumstances that his conscience was captive to the Word of God alone I believe he meant it and I still believe he meant it there was more to the story Don what I'm sharing with you know but this was a major part of what made it necessary for me to leave the Lutheran church and become a 7th day had been so amazing fact number 1 Luther was not unaware of the Sabbath and even at the time of the Reformation some Christians observe that. They were called Sabbath Tarion Anabaptists and they appeared before 1527 and they formed congregations in places like Moray of the Bohemia Sylia Holland France. Partner. The 415278 was in 1524 that Andreas Carlstadt. Luther's colleague at what we're actually wrote a tract on the Sabbath and it upset Luther and he wouldn't let. Current publish it in Whitman Burke So Karl stud went to the city of Genoa in Holland and had it published and in that tract he wrote that Saturday is the true Sabbath and that there should be a radical rest from all labor on that day and Luther of course was apprehensive. About calling it Carlos that's interest in the suburbs and he responded in the letter to Philip my Langton by the way a lot of this material is in the library at Andrews I was able to read the letter he wrote to my Langston and he said quote if Carl's stud rights more on the Sabbath Sunday must give way and the sabbath that is Saturdays must be kept holy unquote Luther So when I read that and I began to think about it he actually admitted. To maligns on that Saturday the 7th day is the Sabbath so the relationship of those 2 very strong men had been deteriorating up until that time because of Carl Stokes involvement in some of the bile and stuff how to erupt in Wittenberg. That involving the smashing of images song and the church there and besides they had some disagreements on the Lord's Supper Luther and Carl spoke. Another amazing fact and this was just almost unbelievable loser actually joined with secular authority by persuading elector Frederick of Saxony a political authority civil authority to dismiss Karl Stut from the university faculty and eventually banish him from the province of Saxony picked him out union of church and state why and discovered that I sat there is a come on Luther and Carl's loved 1 to live among Sabah Tarion on a Baptist and Holland you know and you begin to wonder what about religious liberty which was also all a part of the Reformation What about freedom of conscience you know I said you know I thought or Luther I don't understand this here you said to the Emperor and the Papal representatives that your conscience is captive to the Word of God What about freedom of conscience. Because the way he's treating his Callie you see his respect Luther's respect for the inspired text of the Bible was so profound in my study Carol this is the next amazing fact in my study Carol in the seminary library at I wonder if university I spent hours there digging into all of this Luther was a scholar of the biblical languages Hebrew and Greek as well as the Latin of the Bible translation that was called a bottle of the Vulgate. And his respect for the inspired text of the Bible was so profound that he dared not tamper with the Bible itself so when he when he translated it the Bible into the German born ocular he was very careful to do with accurately so when I went to check his German Old Testament I was very pleased with Discover the SAB is commandment was translated accurately even even in spite of the fact that he followed the Catholic numbering and called the Sabbath commandment the 3rd set of the for which it really is now listen to his German translation and anybody here know German a little anyway already did in German. Get down to does sub a toggle this dust to even highly guessed sects TOG a soul to do are bitin owned all the dying of their tone. See been 10 the gay is Star Sabat does hair Dynas go up this that's an accurate translation of the Hebrew Remember the Sabbath day that you keep it holy 6 days shall you labor and do all your work but the 7th day is the Sabbath of the Lord your God. Now we know that he began to work on the translation of the Old Testament right after his return to Whitney Berg from the Wartburg castle in 1522 so it is very highly probable that he was working on Exodus at the time that Carl stuck was writing about the Sabbath and in $1529.00 Luther published as a large catechism. Which was a textbook for pastors or preparing people for church membership and I had turned to went in my copy of the Lutheran Confessions in the book of Concord this is the very volatile and it's here in his large catechism under the 10 commandments on page $375.00. And my jaw dropped. When I read under the 3rd commandment which is related to for this is the English translation of the German you shall sanctify the holy day in German it reads to souls doesn't failure Todd highly get out can you imagine how I felt I just read to you his translation his German translation of the Sabbath commandment and here I find in his large catechism he completely changed that and I wrote in the margins I underlined what he says he says as far as old word observance is concerned a commandment what's given to the Jews a low but Jesus said it was given for man didn't he that is to say for all of mankind My jaw dropped when I discovered the liberties he had taken with the Biblical text regarding the Sabbath come and he did not follow the Biblical text in his catechism but the sleezy I asked to call tradition of the policy if you see it's not a translation it's an interpretation that is wrong. I was all alone there in my study Carol faced with this the literal meaning of the commandment is altered the truth is completely transformed obscured and that is the Septuagint the Bible says the god hello to 7 day of the week says therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and by doing so made it holy God Himself made it holy the commandment says that we keep it holy oh by entering that rest in faith Luther radically alter his bowls of those aspects and by his translation Luther made the commandment command what it in fact does not command and this glaring distortion is further exposed in his explanation of the Sabbath commandment in his catechism he says the commandment does not concern Christians in a literal sense and he argues for the observance of Sunday not on the basis of biblical evidence view you did all but on that of tradition expediency and good order those were the words you you see because there are no Biblical sources supporting the observance of the 1st day of the week Luther could not use any so there are no biblical references there and so he resorted to a deceptive argument he said we keep Sunday for tradition expediency in good order now what is the vital lesson here study the Bible not catechism. Another amazing fact. After his rejection of the commandments literalism Luther makes this of sounding statement it's in there he says sense so much depends on God's word that no holy day is sanctified without it that's right isn't it but listen we must realize that God insists upon us tricked observance of this commandment and will punish all who despise his word and refuse to hear and learn it especially at the times appointed but he doesn't say this in reference to the actual commandment but in reference to his distorted translation you shall hallow a day of rest the day over us and he says if you don't do it God's going to punish you now is that legalism or what I sat dumb founded if you refuse to hear and learn it especially at the times appointed he says appointed by whom that's what I asked I may have even southern alone appointed by who God or man God or Church God or you Luther Now if you had said that with respect to the Bible Sabbath it would be what was. And would be consistent with Biblical testimony and the keeping of that day would constitute the obedience of faith but because he said it with respect to Sunday which is not meant by Exodus 20 more say it is not consistent with so long script or a. Luther made the commandment command what it doesn't command. And biased so doing he rejected what it does in fact command and the clincher was the realization that Luther's altering of the commandment was contrary to so last crypto and to his own principle that the Bible is always to be interpreted literally unless the context indicates otherwise the literal an obvious meaning of the Sabbath commandment is very clear the context does not allow for any other interpretation that's where we stand as of the Day Adventists and 1 who reads it with a mind that is on burdened by human and ecclesiastical tradition or cultural demands in all we keep something because everybody does every every Christian does will understand what God's will is and by faith will obey his will that's called You'll be the units of faith and that's precisely why so many people eventually find their way to the 7th Day Adventist Church and why that principle must be maintained by this chart so there I sat I thought what what should I do follow the Bible or Luther. Mistranslation and there's a catechism I could come to only 1 can produce the Bible is right Luther was wrong while he was right on many things for which we have to thank you he was wrong on that another amazing fact in July a 1519 loser Langton and Carlstadt were invited to debate with the Catholic theologian John ek. In the City of Light and the debate dealt with the question about Soroti for face on life. The reformers argued for the authority of the Bible alone and act for the authority of the church and in his $404.00 C.C.'s act exposed the inconsistency of the reformers he said that if they really held to the Bible alone they could not hold to the 1st day of the week for which there is no biblical authority that's what the Catholic theologian ACT SAT. And he told me said if you continue to troll to Sunday it would be to recognize the primacy of the Roman Catholic Church and in his book called The Handbook of common places ECK wrote wrote this. He said The Sabbath is commanded many times by God neither in the Gospels nor in Paul is it definite that the Sabbath has ceased its act happening Nevertheless he says the Church of the Roman Catholic Church has instituted the Lord's day through the tradition of the Apostles with alt scripture. And says some of you have may have heard this already I don't know but I'm going to repeat it for the benefit of those you've you who may knock it from the parish paper of St Catherine Catholic Church and all gun act Michigan was published May 21995 and says quote perhaps the boldest saying. The most revolutionary change the church ever did happen in the 1st century a per century way back to holy day the Sabbath was changed from Saturday to Sunday not from any directions noted in the Scriptures but from the church's sense of its own power people who think that the scriptures should be the sole authority should logically become 7th Day Adventists and keep Saturday holy I've ever heard the. $995.00 Oh of course it's right if you if you study the Bible and you believe that Saturdays is the Sabbath it's only logical for you to become 7 Bad been when I read that it just come to terms what I have to do here is the little horn power of Daniel $725.00 that will speak against the Most High and oppress his saints and tried to change the times of the law no matter what we do let's remember this will serve to sanctify some day or the Sabbath what we do does not sign to fly a 7 day that would be legalism. God has already done that by His word of command he alone can make holy You and I can't make anything holy only God makes holy The commandment is to keep it holy by observing it by entering into its rest by faith not make it holy and though his contribution to the Reformation was enormous. For which we can be grateful Luther was nevertheless on faithful to the written Word of God with respect of the Sabbath so can you imagine what started to happen in my thinking and to my trust in and respect for Luther when I was able to absorb these amazing facts for a while I was a man with all the church I was a Lutheran but not a Lutheran I was not a 7th Day Adventist but I was a 7th. Because I started observing the 7th day sabbath by the way when I when we want to Andrus university and I was still a Lutheran I could've attended a real nice Lutheran church just down the street some Missouri Senate church but I didn't I made a deliberate choice that I would attend pioneer Memorial Church every Sabbath because I wanted to get the flavor of Adventism not just from books and lectures but from the way the people worship and behave done understand what I'm saying but gradually I knew what I had to do and Luther helped me make the decision I don't regret it because it's Bible truth. Once you see the truth you have no other choice if you see the truth and you don't do something about it you're stop it. My conscience is captive to the Word of God. I can say that with Luther The issue is still the same today maybe maybe even more salt there was only 1 safe response to issues of faith here I stand I can't do anything else God help me. Well tomorrow I'm going to be talking about what Ellen White called the grand principle and the final session that we shared together I hope I hope that you are being blessed by being here. And that my story. Ellen White refers to what to life as the word of their testimony I hope that my story will serve to fortify your face and firm it up. I really believe that the 7th Day Adventist Church right now needs a revival. There are a lot of issues that we're facing and I'm going to refer to 1 of them tomorrow as an illustration of what I've been talking about all week and we're going to be called by God to stat to stand firm so we need a revival and our country the United States of America as well as other places right now is desperately in need of a spiritual awakening but that will never happen until the church has revived and you know folks like you begin to respond to what is called Every member involvement because pastors aren't going to finish the work. I can't do when I'm 88 years old and you can't and your children and your grandchildren can't we have to light a fire under the lay people in our church right now. And I believe that the folks will respond when they see the issues and they see the critical nature of the need. I believe folks will respond I really do OK that's enough for me today you know. All those are stuck to his guns you know that he he just ignored that which is mystifying in itself you know. Being injured. In. Every. Race you. Will never see. The tragedy of the Reformation was not only in that fact but the fact that Protestants were persecuting other Protestants there were Sabbath keeping believe or as a result of this kind of teaching of from Carl study and others that were put to death. Even in Finland now Finland was. Under the control of Sweden for 600 years and 1 of the Swedish kings I think it was Gustave Vala saw issued a decree for Finland including Finland sabots keepers would be either banished or put to death drown or burned at the stake and England under the reign of. Queen Mary who followed in line after Henry the 8th night Catholics burned Protestants and then the next Queen Elizabeth the 1st was a Protestant and under her power Protestants burned Catholics. And there were a lot of probably lot of reformers Protestants who object to that cause objected to that kind of the havior and all this and this isn't Christ like behavior so you see the Reformation was not pure so I was ready to lead by I want. My piece was a statement about the church. Or to transfers or 77 the 1st. Chapter accurately answer that it's been quite a while since I read the holes. Are. There the. Way because you've never been striving for it's not true. That some point it just gives you is just going to go well that's true. If you want to if you want to google that you can't I don't do Google but. I know that if you are able you could google the Reformation in all trace it down and read the 95 seasons. It's. Like you know. Now. Interesting he was right in. The states yes. Well there were other things historically happening at the same time and this is 1 thing that we need to really look into and our study of the Reformation I didn't think I wanted to spend time on it but at that very time. There was a strong Islam make resurgence and the Turks were threatening Europe representing the Mosel in faith same thing is happening today and so a lot of the political figures were concerned about that and they wanted peace you know so that they could face this threat from the east and also all. There were movements among the the Jewish faith to take advantage of the of the up evil and promote Judaism they were called to the eyes earth and so you have these other things that are there that they were also dealing with and facing of contributed to to this whole mix of confusion and different emphases and so on now I believe I believe that the 7th Day Adventist Church is to true ecumenical church because we are calling people from all faiths and all denominations to a unity based on scripture not based on compromise in order to in order to contribute to the contemporary ecumenical movement you have to compromise because I have a volunteer for Pereira. OK. And. This media was brought to you by audio 1st a website dedicated to spreading God's word through free sermon audio and much more if you would like to know more about audio verse if you would like to listen to more sermons leave a Visit W W W audio verse or.

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