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The Sanctuary Message and Desmond Ford's Attack

Norman McNulty


Norman McNulty

Neurologist at Southern Tennessee Regional Health System, Lawrenceburg, TN




  • October 14, 2012
    3:00 PM
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Welcome back and welcome to those of you who were not here the first hour and let’s have a word of prayer and then we will get into our next presentation.

Father in heaven, we thank you for this privilege we have of studying the sanctuary message, as we get into an area of history not that long ago, I pray that it would help us to understand how Satan has tried to attack this message, but yet you have been more powerful and will ultimately prevail so be with me in a special way as we go through this next hour and be with each one of us as we listen, we pray in Jesus name, amen.  

For those of you who weren’t here in the first hour, I'll just do a quick summary of what we saw. We read four quotes from the Spirit of Prophecy, the first one Ellen White said

the sanctuary, in connection with the 2300 days… is “present truth” message for our time, we should frequently dwell upon the sanctuary message. There is another quote which I’m going to come back to later which she describes this message is an eternal pillar of truth GC 489 she says that is as essential to the plan of salvation as was His death upon the cross. and she says when we understand this message properly in T5 575 we will prepare a people to stand in the great day of God, and their efforts will be successful. So that’s why we study the message. And then we went through some of the history and the 2300 days and all of that.

Now we are going to go into our next presentation and you know as someone how studies our message and as I present this message, I find for some, well it’s not a strange reason to me, but whenever you talk about history where there was apostasy, that gets a lot more interest than if you just give a straight forward Bible study on the sanctuary doctrine itself. But there is a reason why I’m talking about this, it’s not to get more interest it’s to show, the first presentation shows the sanctuary message is the substance and essence of Adventism, and now we’re going to see that Satan hates this message and he’s attacked it and we’re going to see how he's attacked it. So the first presentation was entitled The Sanctuary Message and Adventism. This message is entitled The Sanctuary Message and Desmond Ford’s Attack. Now I'm going to read a quote from Councils to Writers and Editors page 40 which you've probably heard before which sets the stage for what we’re going to talk about.

God will arouse His people; if other means fail, heresies will come in among them, which will sift them, separating the chaff from the wheat. The Lord calls upon all who believe His word to awake out of sleep. {CW 40.1}

which tells me that we as a church were sound asleep when the Desmond Ford crisis hit. If we had been awake and doing the work we are supposed to be doing, the Lord wouldn’t have had to allow this heresy to come into our church.

Precious light has come, appropriate for this time. It is Bible truth, showing the perils that are right upon us. This light should lead us to a diligent study of the Scriptures, and a most critical examination of the positions which we hold. {CW 40.1}

So let me just say this again, if we had not been asleep as a people, the Desmond Ford heresy never would've needed to come in, but here's what happened, we as God 's people were in 1979, and I could say that 1979 in many ways looks like 2012, I would say that the men in the Seventh-day Adventist church had a better understanding of what their favorite baseball and football teams needed to do to win the playoffs and what players they needed to get so that they can have the best successful season possible. And the women probably had a better understanding of the latest fashions hitting Hollywood and the movies and their favorite movie stars and in this and that and whatever and few, precious few Adventists could give you a meaningful study on the sanctuary doctrine. Is it any different in 2012? I hope so, but I don't know. I go around to a few places and there is a lot of ignorance to our message. Now we are going to see when there's ignorance to the message, you can have a smooth tongued theologian with a terminal degree in theology who sounds like he knows way more than you ever have, and he will make you convinced that what you thought you believe never was true because you never studied. And then he dictates the terms of your study, so that now you don't really know what you believed in the first place. and when we should have been studying we were caught up with the cares of this life. I'm going to now look at the perspective, I’m going to read a perspective from an eyewitness who was there and this comes from a paper entitled “1844; Embattled Yet Enduring”, it was written by a pastor by the name of Kevin Paulson, some of you may know Kevin Paulson and it’s at a website GreatControversy.org [sic website no longer available] and it was written August 12, 2006 for those of you who would like the reference and it’s an excellent article. I’m going to use it a little bit for our presentation this afternoon, but if you want more detail I would encourage you to go back and look at it, but he was an eyewitness account. I’m just going to read it straight through and then we’ll talk about it. This is a very fascinating eyewitness account and this is in his words.

“On the fall quarter events calendar we noted a scheduled meeting of the Association of Adventist forums, this was when he got to school at Pacific Union College, and Desmond Ford was the featured speaker, his title “The Investigative Judgment, Theological Milestone or Historical Necessity”. [That’s an interesting title.] “The very words rang uneasy bells in the minds of the faithful, the meeting was scheduled for October 27, 1979.”

[Today is what the 13th of October? So we’re talking nearly 33 years ago today, just two weeks short of 33 years since this happened, for those of you who are college kids that seems like a looong time ago, but in the history of Adventism it’s pretty recent, in mine too actually. I was 2 years and 3 months old, so I was two years old when this happened. It was October 27, 1979 I imagine it was probably a day somewhat like today. He says:

“I remember it well, it was a lovely autumn Sabbath, word seemed to have gotten around that Ford was about to make a major statement. Devotees of his theology gathered to the PUC campus from far and near one reported to me much later that even before Ford had stated here ‘what I say tomorrow will be heard around the world.’ ”

[And guess what, we’re talking about it 33 years later, so he was right.]

“More than a few seem to notice. That same evening I spoke on the telephone with Doctor Herbert Douglas then serving as senior book editor at the Pacific Press. he was certain Ford would be extremely subtle in his assertions and would need, in Douglas’ words, ‘to be smoked out of his lair’ he believed it utterly out of the question that Ford would join Robert Brinsmead in directly attacking the historic SDA sanctuary doctrine. I then told Douglas I would call him the following evening after Ford's presentation, but only if something dramatic occurred. He seemed quite sure I would not be calling him, he was in for a surprise. At 3:30 the following afternoon, two friends and I knelt for prayer in my dormitory room prior to leaving for the meeting site. Somehow we too sensed something serious was about to happen. As we approached Paulin Hall where the meeting was to occur, we saw the doors open and a crowd start pouring out. Running ahead I learned that due to overflow numbers, the meeting was being relocated to Irwin Hall, PUC 's historic building, which then overlooked the lower expansive of classrooms, walkways and the college church complex. My friends and I turned around and hurried up the long stone staircase, anxious to find good seats. At one point I asked with a hint of sarcasm “what are we running for, so we can hear the investigative judgment thrown away?” my negative premonitions were growing stronger. Ford began his discourse with his own testimony describing doubts he had held for decades about the harmony of the Adventist sanctuary doctrine with the book of Hebrews. he went on to discount the validity of the year-day principal, denied any linguistic connection between Daniel 8:14 and the depiction in Leviticus 16 of the ancient cleansing of the sanctuary, and declared that the book of Hebrews places Christ in the most holy place not in 1844 but immediately at his ascension. The crowd loved every word. [I mean, what in the world?] The crowd loved every word greeting Ford's message with enthusiastic applause.

At least one retired North American Division president was there rising to his feet during the question period with a choked voice and a breaking heart. A group of us gathered in the back after the meeting hardly believing what we had just heard. Upon returning to my dorm room I called Herbert Douglas again as I had promised to do in the event Ford's message was newsworthy. I read him my notes over the telephone. By the time I finished his sorrow was palpable. Tapes of the meeting belted the world in days. Soon the General conference intervened arranging with Pacific Union College that Ford be given a six-month leave of absence, during which time he would prepare a defense of his views, which would then be examined by a committee of persons from varied backgrounds. Ford’s manuscript titled “Daniel 8:14 the Day of Atonement and the Investigative Judgment” totaled 991 pages and was eventually published in book form. An abbreviated version of the manuscript was also published in Spectrum Magazine. A group of 114 scholars, pastors and church administrators, soon to be called The Sanctuary Review Committee, met to consider Ford's case at the Glacier View Ranch near Ward, Colorado the week of August 10 - 15 1980.

Less than a month later following unsuccessful efforts by church leaders to urge Ford’s reconsideration of his stand, the General Conference recommended of the Australasian Division that Ford’s ministerial credentials be removed. This was done. The years that followed would see scores of pastors and a number of congregations exit the ministry as well as the denomination, and the controversy thus ignited continues to this day. It is an epic the church dare not forget and one whose unfinished business remains essential to the task of contemporary Adventism.”

How many of you are familiar with the Desmond Ford story? Many of you, some of you not. Ford was never here at Southern, he was a teacher at Pacific Union College and before that he had been a teacher at Avondale College, and for those of you who don't know who Desmond Ford was, I’ll give you a little background. Desmond Ford was a brilliant theologian, he was like the favorite teacher at Avondale College, he was the teacher that every theology student wanted to be in his class because he was such a dynamic, engaging teacher. He was easy to talk to, you to get a meeting with him to talk about your class whenever you wanted. He was a very nice, down-to-earth guy. Then he started causing some trouble in Australia and so the GC or whoever the powers that be were, said hey he’s a big fish in a little pond of Australia, why don’t we move him to North America and maybe his influence won't be as big because it will be in a larger territory. Well what happened was he was a big fish that hit the global field and it went viral basically, once he hit North America and you know we’re still talking about him to this day.

Just to give you an example of okay, so Desmond Ford comes out and he attacks the sanctuary doctrine. Just to give you a comparison, you see how the gymnasium has been packed to the rafters, so to speak, with Doug Batchelor this week. It would in some ways be similar if Doug Batchelor said, I have a major announcement to make about my sanctuary views and I’ve changed some ideas, come out to hear what I have to say. And thankfully, I’m confident that that will never happen with Doug Batchelor, but that is the type of draw that Desmond Ford had, the way Doug Batchelor has, he is a well-known speaker. So okay, that's the story.

I’m going to look at 10 key issues, we talked about them a little bit. Here are the 10 key points that Desmond Ford raised with regard to the sanctuary doctrine.

Point #1 Desmond Ford says the focus of the judgment and sanctuary cleansing in Daniel 7 and 8 is not the people of God but their enemies.

It’s like you Adventists say that the cleansing of the sanctuary is going to purify a people of God to stand when Jesus comes; but if you study Daniel it's actually just talking about God's enemies that are going to be judged and that’s what the sanctuary being cleansed is talking about because it got defiled by the enemies of God. That's basically what he's arguing.

Point #2 the year-day principle lacks clear biblical support.

So your 2300 days, that’s not 2300 literal years, that’s probably just 2300 literal days which is a little bit more than 7 years and then some people say that since it’s evening and morning that it is 1 day or whatever, so they cut it in half to 1150 and that’s 3 ½ years.

Point #3 he says the word cleansed in Daniel 8:14 is not a correct translation.           

By the way, we’re going to talk about all this, but I’m just telling you these are his arguments.

Point #4 he says Antiochus Euphonies was the primary if not exclusive fulfillment of the little horn prophecy in Daniel 7 and 8.

How many of you have heard that one before? Okay, we’ll talk about that. That’s maybe one of the easiest points to debunk.

Point #5 the book of Hebrews teaches that Christ entered the most holy place of the heavenly sanctuary at his ascension.

Point #6 the Bible teaches neither a two apartment heavenly sanctuary nor a two phased ministry by Jesus in heaven.

Point #7 the phrase within the veil in the book of Hebrews refers to the second veil or entrance to the Most Holy Place.

Point #8 Seventh-day Adventists are wrong in teaching the sacrificial blood defiled the sanctuary either on earth or in heaven.

Then here are the last two points which the repercussions are much broader, the implications are much broader.

Point #9 the writings of Ellen White have no rightful authority in settling doctrinal controversy within the church

Point #10 the sanctuary doctrine as historically taught by Seventh-day Adventists contradicts the New Testament gospel of grace.

Okay, so what has Desmond Ford just done? He has basically just destroyed Seventh-day Adventism. So if you agree with all ten of his points or even most of these points you are really no longer a Seventh-day Adventist.

Recall for those of you who were here in the first presentation, and I’ll repeat it for those of you came in. Ellen White had her first vision in December of 1844. Maybe I should read that again just because in light of what we’re talking about. It is on page 14 of Early Writings. Ellen White said

I was taken off in vision and I was told to “Look again, and look a little higher.” then she says: I saw a straight and narrow path, cast up high above the world. On this path the Advent people were traveling to the city, which was at the farther end of the path. They had a bright light set up behind them at the beginning of the path, which an angel told me was the midnight cry.

We studied in the last hour that the midnight cry was the advent movement in the autumn of 1844 setting the date for October 22. And she says:

If they kept their eyes fixed on Jesus, who was just before them, leading them to the city, they were safe. And then she sees how people, The light behind them went out, leaving their feet in perfect darkness, and they stumbled and lost sight of the mark and of Jesus, and fell off the path down into the dark and wicked world below.

That is what is happening here with this whole Desmond Ford issue because the whole 2300 days that was the feel, the mechanism that drove the midnight cry movement. Ellen White says that the light at the beginning of the Advent pathway, and now Desmond Ford is saying ‘1844 that's not even true, October 22, that's just a historical necessity is not a theological milestone. The year-day principle isn’t even true, that's not 2300 years, and Jesus went straight into the most holy place in 31 A.D. if you believe in 31 A.D, and he raised questions about that as well. So there were a lot of things going on here that basically destroyed our message when Ellen White says this is present truth message. So let’s go through, and some of these points are going to be pretty easy.

Point 1 The focus of the judgment and sanctuary cleansing in Daniel 7 & 8 is not the people of God but their enemies.

I’m not going to spend a lot of time on this because this is one of the easy points and before I say this, how many of you know Lewis Walton? Several of you know Lewis Walton, he happens to be a family friend of mine. His father-in-law brought my dad into the church, so we've always had a special relationship since then.

I was talking to Lewis about Desmond Ford when we were in Loma Linda a few years ago. We are talking about some of the arguments that Desmond Ford made. He was like, yea you know,

Point 2, people thought that Desmond Ford had really impressive arguments, but if you really look at them, there wasn't much to it, it was just that people hadn't studied. So the focus of the judgment and the Sanctuary Cleansing in Daniel 7 and 8 is not the people of God but their enemies. Let’s look at, just for example, Daniel 7 you see the judgment being set in versus 9 and 10. Dan 7:9I beheld till the thrones were cast down, and the Ancient of days did sit, whose garment was white as snow, and the hair of his head like the pure wool: his throne was like the fiery flame, and his wheels as burning fire.  Dan 7:10A fiery stream issued and came forth from before him: thousand thousands ministered unto him, and ten thousand times ten thousand stood before him: the judgment was set, and the books were opened.

It says the judgment was set and the books were opened. That’s Daniel 7:9 and 10 and when you come to verse 25 Dan 7:25And he shall speak great words against the most High, and shall wear out the saints of the most High, and think to change times and laws: and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and the dividing of time.

you see that there would be the little horn power that would speak great words against the most high then verse 26 you see Dan 7:26 But the judgment shall sit, and they shall take away his dominion, of a little horn to consume and to destroy it unto the end.  And notice this, Dan 7:27And the kingdom and dominion, and the greatness of the kingdom under the whole heaven, shall be given to the people of who? the saints of the most High, whose kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and all dominions shall serve and obey him.

So notice there are two elements that happened in judgment, the little horn is destroyed and God's kingdom is given to his saints. I want to be as charitable as I can towards brother Ford, but I’m like, look you have a doctoral degree and verse 27 says Dan 7:26 But the judgment shall sit, and they shall take away his dominion, of a little horn to consume and to destroy it unto the end.  And notice this, Dan 7:27And the kingdom and dominion, and the greatness of the kingdom under the whole heaven, shall be given to the people of the saints of the most High, whose kingdom is an everlasting kingdom,

It’s like you don’t have to have a doctoral degree in theology to read the plain English that one of the results of the judgment is that the kingdom of God is given to his Saints. and yet some Seventh-day Adventists at that time are like, ‘oh man, the judgment isn’t about God's people, boy oh boy, I’m not sure now.’ and nobody could go to a straightforward verse like that just to show them no, the judgment is about God's people.

And then another verse Daniel 12:1 Dan 12:1 And at that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people: and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time: and at that time thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book.

If you're found written in the book that means that God looked to see if your name is there. So that's in the book of Daniel.

By the way Daniel 12:1 is a parallel prophecy of Daniel 2, 7 & 8.  

Daniel 2 the stone strikes the image.

Daniel 7 the judgment begins.

Daniel 8 the Sanctuary is cleansed.

Daniel 11 & 12 Michael stands up.

Daniel 2 and Daniel 11 & 12 show you what happens at the end of judgment,

Daniel 7 & 8 shows you what happens at the beginning of judgment.

What that tells you is that in order for Jesus to come back, as it says in Daniel 2, there must be a judgment in Daniel 7 which results in a sanctuary that is cleansed, and when it is cleansed, Michael will stand up because he has a people written in the book that he's going to come back for, and their names were written in the book.

So again, that's the first point it makes you wonder what Desmond Ford was thinking when he would say the focus of the judgment and the sanctuary cleansing is not the people of God. There's other verses but we’ll just focus on that.

Answer to Point the year day principal, he says it lacks clear biblical support. Of course Adventists have historically used which two versus? Numbers 14:34 [Num 14:34 After the number of the days in which ye searched the land, even forty days, each day for a year, shall ye bear your iniquities, even forty years, and ye shall know my breach of promise.] and Ezekiel 4:6. [Eze 4:6 And when thou hast accomplished them, lie again on thy right side, and thou shalt bear the iniquity of the house of Judah forty days: I have appointed thee each day for a year.] We use those to support the year-day principle, but let me show you something.

In Daniel 8, actually if you study it carefully, the year-day principle is inherent within the 2300 days. Let me show you why. In Daniel 8:3 Daniel has the vision he sees the ram that waxes great [vs4], the he goat that waxes very great [vs8] and the little horn waxes exceeding great [vs9]. Then after he sees all of that, he hears in verses 13 & 14  Dan 8:13Then I heard one saint speaking, and another saint said unto that certain saint which spake, How long shall be the vision concerning the daily sacrifice, and the transgression of desolation, to give both the sanctuary and the host to be trodden under foot?  Dan 8:14And he said unto me, Unto two thousand and three hundred days; then shall the sanctuary be cleansed.

Unto two thousand and three hundred days; then shall the sanctuary be cleansed. When you look at verse 13 it says How long shall be the vision concerning… the transgression of desolation, because the sanctuary and the host to be trodden under foot?  and then [vs14] the answer is two thousand and three hundred days.

As I mentioned in the previous presentation there's two words for vision mareh and hazon.

Mareh is based on what Daniel heard, and what he heard was the 2300 days.

The hazon is based on what he sees which is the ram, the he goat, and the little horn.

Notice this, the question is, How long shall be the vision or the hazon, how long shall be what we've seen? Well, what have we seen? We’ve seen a ram, we’ve seen a he goat, and a little horn. Okay, now so how long will be what we've seen? Well, what's the ram, what’s the he-goat and what’s the little horn? Verses 20 & 21 tell you,

Dan 8:20The ram which thou sawest having two horns are the kings of Media and Persia. Dan 8:21And the rough goat is the king of Grecia: and the great horn that is between his eyes is the first king.

the ram is Medo-Persia, the he-goat is Greece. Then you know from history that the little horn is pagan and then papal Rome, we’ll just say Rome.

Okay now notice this, if it's 2300 days, verses 20 & 21 clearly tell you that the ram is Medo-Persia, and he-goat is Greece, and then you also have the little horn, what Daniel has seen involves 2300 days. We have a problem if we make this literal time, and this is the best argument for the year-day principle. You can do Ezekiel 4:6, Numbers 14:34 but this sticking within the context of Daniel is much better. What are the dates for the kingdom of Medo-Persia? 539-331 B.C. What are the dates for Greece? 331-168 B.C. Then you have Pagan Rome from 168 B.C. - 476 A.D. and you have the interlude, and then you have Papal Rome ruling from 538-1798.

So here is the point, if you say that the 2300 days are literal days you're saying that somehow 2300 literal days would encapsulate the kingdoms of Medo-Persia the ram, Greece the he-goat, and Rome the little horn and there’s a problem with that because Medo-Persia ruled for 208 years and then Greece for however many years that was, and then Rome. Clearly the 2300 days cannot be literal days [6.3888 literal years], because the question is, how long shall be the vision or the hazon? The hazon is what you have seen in Daniel 8:3-12 and the answer based on what he hears of 2300 days.

Here’s another key point, why was Babylon missing in Daniel 8? The kingdom of Babylon was present in Daniel 2, it was present in Daniel 7, the head of gold in Daniel 2, it’s the lion in Daniel 7, and then in Daniel 8 you start with the ram of Medo-Persia and Babylon's missing. Why is Babylon missing? Because the 2300 days starts in 457 B.C. during the time of Medo-Persia. Babylon is not relevant, even though it is in the 3rd year of Belshazzar, Babylon is not relevant to the 2300 day prophecy, which is the key point of Daniel 8.

So anyway, Desmond Ford says that the year-day principle is not based on Scripture. I would say, if you just take a look at what Daniel 8 is teaching, if the vision involves Medo-Persia and Greece alone that's 539-168 that’s almost 400 years, not quite. So you can't say that the year-day principle is not inherent, it’s clearly inherent in the passage in Daniel 8, it involves Medo-Persia, Greece, pagan and papal Rome, and it makes sense. You start in 457 B.C., 2300 years later you get past 1798 to 1844, and it involves every single kingdom that is depicted in that vision. Does that make sense? So here we have a clear biblical Adventist defense for the year-day principle.

And again you can use Numbers 14:34 and Ezekiel 4:6, that’s fine Ellen White uses them, so they are a legitimate use, but the very fact you can just use Daniel 8 to debunk Desmond Ford’s argument is pretty nice.

Point C – 3 Okay now this next one is going to be fairly involved here he says the word cleansed is not a correct translation of Daniel 8:14. How many of you have heard that argument? Has anyone heard the argument where it says unto 2300 days then shall the sanctuary be cleansed? People argue ‘well the word cleansed doesn't really mean cleansed’. Have you heard that before, anyone heard that? Someone has, okay, most of you haven’t, well that’s good, I’m glad you haven’t been exposed to that heresy. It’s nice to see people who have not had their minds polluted with heresy, anyway.

What does the word cleansed mean? What is the word in Hebrew for cleansed, anyone know? Alright, it’s the Hebrew word tsadeq. What does the word tsadeq mean? It can mean righteous, it can mean to justify, it can mean to set right, it can mean to vindicate. Desmond Ford says it does not mean cleansed, it just means that you are justified, or set right, or vindicated, that it does not mean cleansed. Well let's see, is that really true?

Let’s look at a few points. Now I’m going to give you a reference here. How many of you know Michael Hasel here at Southern? He is a teacher in the school village in archaeology. His father, how many of you know of his father Gerhard Hasel? Unfortunately his father tragically died in a car accident 1994, he was one of our best theologians in the church, and he actually went head-to-head with Desmond Ford at Glacier View along with my father-in-law Gerard Damsteegt. Anyway Gerhard Hasel has a very good section on the Sanctuary and Symposium on Daniel, this is published by the Daniel Review Committee series, you can get at the ABC, this is volume two of the series, and this particular article is pages 426-461, however, he deals specifically with Desmond Ford's assertions in pages 448-452. Just so know who Gerhard Hasel was, he was an Old Testament scholar with a special emphasis in the book of Daniel, so Gerhard Hasel probably knew a few things about what he was talking about with respect to the book of Daniel. So this is from a theologians perspective answering some of the charges. The word ni·ad·dāq comes from the Hebrew word tsadeq they basically mean the same thing. Now this is the argument that Gerhard Hasel makes, and I've seen others make this as well, and I think it's a very compelling case. When you read the Hebrew Scripture, the Hebrew Scripture will use what is called parallelism in a verse, to help you understand what something means. Let me give you an example, turn to Job 4:17 notice what this verse says Job 4:17 Shall mortal man be more just than God? shall a man be more pure than his maker?

Now notice what happens here, there's parallel questions being asked. The first question is Shall mortal man be more just than God?  The second question shall a man be more pure than his maker? You see that? Is man more just than God? Is man more pure than God? Well what are the Hebrew words being used here in Job 4:17? What is the Hebrew word for just here? And again, I’m not going to spend too much time on this, but this helps to debunk Desmond Ford’s point. The word to be more just than God is tsadeq (yiṭ·har), and the word to be more pure than God is the Hebrew word taher (yiṣ·dāq) , okay and Old Testament scholars teach that when you see a parallel question like this, the second word gives meaning also to the first word, so Shall mortal man be more just than God? shall a man be more pure than his maker?  in other words to be just is to be pure, that's what the parallelism is teaching. It’s not just are you more just than God, are you more pure than God? they mean the same thing. The Hebrew words are a little bit different tsadeq and taher but this is not the only time in Scripture that they are used together, they are used several other places and let me show you the next one. Job 17:9.  Notice what this says: Job 17:9 The righteous also shall hold on his way, and he that hath clean hands shall be stronger and stronger.

Now what are the two key words in this passage? Righteous and clean, so what’s the word for righteous in this passage? It’s tsadeq (ṣad·dîq), which means the same thing as misdak and what’s the word for clean? It’s taher (tahor) and there are several other places, I’m not going to take the time to read it but you can go to Psalms 19:9, Ecclesiastes 9:2 and there’s some other verses that Gerhart Hasel makes mention of. The point is this, frequently in the Old Testament the word just and cleansed are used synonymously. So when Daniel 8:14 says Dan 8:14…Unto two thousand and three hundred days; then shall the sanctuary be cleansed, and he uses the word wə·niṣ·daq the Hebrew mind understands that if you are just you are pure, if you are just you are cleansed. And Desmond Ford says it didn’t use the word for cleansed in Leviticus 16 it used a completely different word that is not used at all in Leviticus 16 yet in reality, if you study the parallelism of the Old Testament the word used by Daniel was frequently used to describe what has been purified, to describe what has been cleansed, because it is just. So that is an argument that many Seventh-day Adventists had no clue how to answer. It's like aah, well I guess I didn’t know the original language and I guess I got tricked by the King James and whatever other versions were out there, because I thought that’s what it meant and it doesn't really mean that.

Now we’re going to talk about this as well, one of the reasons why Desmond Ford made a big deal about this is because his understanding of justification is incomplete and we’re going to talk about that in point #10. His understanding of justification is that you are declared righteous only, you're not actually made righteous by being justified, and so that's an issue.

Does not make sense of the parallelism of just and pure, and just and cleansed, that those words are used in parallel in the Old Testament? Listen, I give credit where credit is due, Gerhard Hasel put that together in this article, it’s very well-written and I would encourage you, if you want to dig deeper into that to take a look at that. Okay so that's on point #3.

Point 4 that Antiochus Euphonies is the little horn of Daniel 7 & 8. This one is so easy to debunk, in fact I looked at a back-and-forth one time. I forget if it was Adventist Today or Spectrum, this was several years ago, where Kevin Paulson who I quoted from at the beginning of this article, he and Desmond Ford wrote back and forth challenges to each other and Kevin Paulson pointed out the points about the little horn and the points are this: the ram in Daniel 8 is great, the he goat is very great, the little horn is exceeding great. So they get stronger and stronger and stronger, so you are saying that Antiochus Epiphanies who was one king of the Greek empire was exceeding great for three years that Antiochus Epiphanies reigned, somewhere around there, Medo-Persia which reigned for 200 years was great, Greece was very great and then one king of Greece was exceeding great. I mean that’s the argument. Desmond Ford’s response to that was, that’s what all the scholars say. That’s his best response and you know who those scholars are? Those scholars are from Babylon. Why are we going to use Babylonian scholarship to try to prove who the little horn is? Yea, we go to their universities, I hear you, and that’s what Desmond Ford did.

If you just let the text speak for itself, Medo-Persia which is identified in Daniel 8:20 as the ram – waxed great. The he-goat in Daniel 8:21 waxed very great, the he-goat is Greece in verse 21 and earlier in the chapter it’s described as very great. And then the little horn is exceeding great. Somehow when you look at any history and you don't have to be a theologian, any historian will say oh, if Daniel 8 says the ram is Medo-Persia and the he-goat is Greece, we know that Rome came after Greece and we know that Rome was way more powerful than Greece or Medo-Persia. So don’t let some Babylonian scholar try to confuse you. When Desmond Ford starts to make arguments like that it shows you just how weak all of his points are, I mean because it's not even close. Antiochus Epiphanies as little horn, that’s not even close.

Point 5 Now we get into some other issues. The book of Hebrews teaches that Christ entered into the most holy place of the heavenly sanctuary at his ascension. The passage he uses is

Hebrews 9:12 it says,

Heb 9:12 (KJV)  Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us.

out of curiosity does anyone have the New International Version? Okay, can you read what the verse says in the New International Version, Hebrews 9:12,

Heb 9:12 (NIV)   He did not enter by means of the blood of goats and calves; but he entered the Most Holy Place once for all by his own blood, thus obtaining[b] eternal redemption.

Does someone have New King James? Go ahead and read Hebrews 9:12,

Heb 9:12 (NKJV)   Not with the blood of goats and calves, but with His own blood He entered the Most Holy Place once for all, having obtained eternal redemption. 

Okay, so you read that and you’re like, oh, he went straight from heaven to the most holy place. Now let me be clear here, the King James doesn’t always correctly translate the word in the Greek here in Hebrews 9, so I’m not saying, oh look at the King James and look at your bad version, I’m not saying that. I’m saying look at the Greek, let the Greek explain it, because the King James even will use the term holiest of all, which you would think means the most holy place and that’s not always correct, so look at the Greek. I like the King James because I’ve always use the King James and it’s a good version I think.

Anyway, what we have here in Hebrews 9:12 the Greek word for what most modern translations say mostly place, the King James does say holy place.

Do you know what the Greek word is here? It’s ta hagia do you know what the word ta hagia means? It means holy places, so that can mean the holy place and the most holy place, but it doesn't exclusively mean the most holy place, how do we know that there's a differentiation? Go to Hebrews 9:3 it says Heb 9:3 And after the second vail, the tabernacle which is called the Holiest of all;

then you see in Hebrews 9:4 that it had the ark of the covenant overlaid round about with gold.

Heb 9:4 Which had the golden censer, and the ark of the covenant overlaid round about with gold, wherein was the golden pot that had manna, and Aaron's rod that budded, and the tables of the covenant;

That’s the most holy place, right? So after the second vail, verse 3 you go into the holiest of all in the King James and in verse 4 in that holiest of all you have the arc of the covenant which is the most holy place. Do you know what the Greek word is for holiest of all in verse 3? It’s hagia hagion and it’s the only time Paul uses that phrase [Heb 9:3]. So hagia hagion in the Greek literally means holy of holy places, or the most holy place. So Paul the author of Hebrews,

And by the way Ellen White says Paul is the author of Hebrews, so if you hear an Adventist speaker saying the author of Hebrews says, come on, Ellen White tells us who the author of Hebrews is, we know who it is. You have the just shall live by faith in chapter 10, now Paul is the only one who describes the just shall live by faith Romans 1, Galatians 3, Hebrews 10, I mean – anyway.

So let me go back to my point, Paul the author of Hebrews, he uses a special term to describe the most holy place that’s hagia hagion. Every other time in Hebrews 9 he uses the term ta hagia which means holy places, he doesn’t specify which apartment in all the other verses. We understand from when we get to the book of Revelation and line up the prophecies that you have Jesus in the holy place after his ascension and finally the most holy place in 1844, but Desmond Ford tried to throw mud in the water, so to speak, by saying, oh, if you go to Hebrews 9:12, (Heb 9:12 (KJV) Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us.) and in my modern translation it says he entered into the most holy place as soon as he ascended to heaven. And people are like oh man, that totally destroys our understanding of 1844, and I guess we just made that up to explain our disappointment, and we just really were trying to cover for ourselves, when in reality Desmond Ford was using a flawed argument because the word in Hebrews 9:12 is TA HAGIA which simply means holy places and in Hebrews 9:3 Heb 9:3 And after the second veil, the tabernacle which is called the Holiest of all; the Greek uses hagai hageon to specifically describe the most holy place. I mean Paul, who was a lawyer, you think he would be very specific and careful if he’s going to differentiate between the two, would you not? This is an interesting point I know that the theologians who dialogued with Desmond Ford at Glacier View shared that information with him, and he came across as sounding like, ‘Oh well, that's helpful information, thank you very much.’ and yet he comes back around with his 991 page dissertation and refused to accept that. So he knew about it and he chose to use what the NIV or the New King James translations rather than letting the original Greek define what these mean. Yes, he’s still alive and he is in Australia. Now the next two points are really along the same line.

Point 6 The Bible teaches neither a two apartment heavenly sanctuary nor a two-phase ministry by Jesus in heaven; however, if you look in Hebrews 8 Paul says that Moses was instructed to make the sanctuary according to the pattern showed to him in the mount. So if you make the sanctuary according to the pattern, then there's going to be two apartments, holy place and most holy place. In the book of Revelation you have two apartments, Jesus walking among the candlesticks, he's got the golden sensor in his hand before the arc of incense and then in Revelation 11 you see the most holy place with the ark of the testament. So that's a pretty weak argument.

Point 7 Then uses the phrase within the vail in the book of Hebrews refers to the second veil. I don’t have time to mention this but you can go back and look at Numbers 18:7-10

Num 18:7 Therefore thou and thy sons with thee shall keep your priest's office for everything of the altar, and within the vail; and ye shall serve: I have given your priest's office unto you as a service of gift: and the stranger that cometh nigh shall be put to death.  Numb18:8 And the Lord spake unto Aaron, Behold, I also have given thee the charge of mine heave offerings of all the hallowed things of the children of Israel; unto thee have I given them by reason of the anointing, and to thy sons, by an ordinance for ever.  Numb18:9 This shall be thine of the most holy things, reserved from the fire: every oblation of their's, every meat offering of their's, and every sin offering of their's, and every trespass offering of their's which they shall render unto me, shall be most holy for thee and for thy sons.  Numb18:10 In the most holy place shalt thou eat it; every male shall eat it: it shall be holy unto thee.

and you will see Aaron and his sons were talked about being within the veil, and they are described as being in the outer courtyard. Then within the veil you would go into where the articles of the holy place are at, so there is an example in the Old Testament of going within the veil.

By the way there were two veils, there was the veil going from the courtyard to the holy place and then there was the second veil from the holy place to the most holy place. So when Hebrews says within the veil that just means that Jesus went into the heavenly sanctuary, and he could be in the holy place or he could be in the most holy place depending on what time in the earth’s history it is.  

Point 8 I won’t spend too much time on this. Seventh-day Adventists are wrong in teaching that sacrificial blood defiled the sanctuary whether on earth or in heaven.

You’ve probably heard it how the animal sacrificed their blood at the altar of sacrifice, and the blood is taken into the holy place, sprinkled onto the articles there, and so the sanctuary becomes defiled because of the blood. In reality here, what Adventists have taught is that sin is what defiled the sanctuary not the blood, because the blood is what cleanses sin. But the blood is what transferred the sin, so to speak, it didn’t defile the sanctuary, it just transferred the sin.

Just to make a simple illustration, I won't dwell on this, if you take a shower, water cleans you off and eventually you need to clean your shower because it gets dirty, and it’s not the water that made the shower dirty it was the dirt that made the shower dirty. Anyway, the same principle applies.

Point 9. The writings of Ellen White have no rightful authority in settling doctrinal controversy within the church.

Now why do you think Desmond Ford made such a claim? Because Ellen White obviously contradicts him, in fact if I can find the quotes that I read earlier, Ellen White said in Early Writings page 63 that the sanctuary, in connection with the 2300 days, is “present truth” and she says in Early Writings pages 54 and 55 [{color coding:  Remnant  Lost   Father  Jesus  Satan }

I saw a throne, and on it sat the Father and the Son. I gazed on Jesus’ countenance and admired His lovely person. The Father’s person I could not behold, for a cloud of glorious light covered Him. I asked Jesus if His Father had a form like Himself. He said He had, but I could not behold it, for said He, “If you should once behold the glory of His person, you would cease to exist.” Before the throne I saw the Advent people—the church and the world. I saw two companies, one bowed down before the throne, deeply interested, while the other stood uninterested and careless. Those who were bowed before the throne would offer up their prayers and look to Jesus; then He would look to His Father, and appear to be pleading with Him. A light would come from the Father to the Son and from the Son to the praying company. Then I saw an exceeding bright light come from the Father to the Son, and from the Son it waved over the people before the throne. But few would receive this great light. Many came out from under it and immediately resisted it; others were careless and did not cherish the light, and it moved off from them. Some cherished it, and went and bowed down with the little praying company. This company all received the light and rejoiced in it, and their countenances shone with its glory. {EW 54.2}

I saw the Father rise from the throne, [see page 92.] and in a flaming chariot go into the holy of holies within the veil, and sit down. Then Jesus rose up from the throne, and the most of those who were bowed down arose with Him. I did not see one ray of light pass from Jesus to the careless multitude after He arose, and they were left in perfect darkness. Those who arose when Jesus did, kept their eyes fixed on Him as He left the throne and led them out a little way. Then He raised His right arm, and we heard His lovely voice saying, “Wait here; I am going to My Father to receive the kingdom; keep your garments spotless, and in a little while I will return from the wedding and receive you to Myself.” Then a cloudy chariot, with wheels like flaming fire, surrounded by angels, came to where Jesus was. He stepped into the chariot and was borne to the holiest, where the Father sat. There I beheld Jesus, a great High Priest, standing before the Father. On the hem of His garment was a bell and a pomegranate, a bell and a pomegranate. Those who rose up with Jesus would send up their faith to Him in the holiest, and pray, “My Father, give us Thy Spirit.” Then Jesus would breathe upon them the Holy Ghost. In that breath was light, power, and much love, joy, and peace. {EW 55.1}]

that Jesus went from the holy place to the most holy place on October 22, 1844 and that those who stayed in the holy place gained Satan as their leader and it was only those who by faith entered into the most holy place retained Christ as their leader. And there’s plenty of other things, Great Controversy page 489 Ellen White saying that Christ’s ministry …in the sanctuary above is as essential to the plan of salvation as was His death upon the cross. {GC 489.1}

Desmond Ford sees what Ellen White says about the sanctuary and he says, ‘you know what? I'm a theologian, she is not. I have a better understanding of what the original language means that she did and if you can clearly see what I'm teaching, clearly there is no point to the sanctuary doctrine. Ellen White didn't know what she was talking about there, she is useful for devotional reading but you can't use her to settle doctrinal controversy. Come to us the theologians who have the doctoral degrees because we know what we’re talking about.’

In reality there were some theologians who knew what they were talking about, and I mentioned them, Gerhart Hasel, my father-in-law, Gerard Damsteegt, there were others who showed him, hey look, holy place is TA HAGIA, most holy place is hagia hagion [Heb 9.3], what do you have to say about that? ‘Oh that’s a nice point’ and then he doesn’t do anything with it. You go to Daniel 8, oh the year-day principle it’s inherent within the pathogen again. So Ellen White, does she have rightful authority in settling doctrinal controversy within the church? You better believe it, yes we prove everything from the Bible, but the point is that when Ellen White has a clear statement saying that the sanctuary message is true, and then you say that it's not, that’s where it becomes an issue, and her writings do have say as far as authority with the Adventist understanding of doctrine.

Point 10 The last the sanctuary doctrine as historically taught by Seventh-day Adventists contradicts the New Testament gospel of grace.

What does he mean by that? Why does the sanctuary doctrine contradict the gospel of grace? What about the sanctuary doctrine is not grace oriented in his words? Well what's happening according to the sanctuary doctrine? 1844 Jesus goes into the most holy place to begin the work of the investigative judgment. He's reviewing the records first of the dead and then of the living at some point, which we don’t know when that’s going to happen. What Desmond Ford says is ‘that is such an ungraceful doctrine, such an ungraceful teaching.’ Here's a few key points about why he would come to this. First of all he’s like what is the point of the judgment when you really understand the gospel? And here's how Desmond Ford understood the gospel, we could spend an hour each on these points.

First point he says we are born sinners born under condemnation just by the fact of being born. So because of that the only way we can be saved is to be legally justified, and sanctification is nice, but it's not part of salvation and the reason why it is not part of salvation, in his own words, is that ‘with justification, because you’re born a sinner under condemnation, God declares you to be just, your covered with his righteousness, but you’re still that born sinner so you just have a legal covering that is covering you from that condemnation but that's 100% God's work when he justified you, however’ in Desmond Ford’s words, ‘when you are sanctified that's half God's work and half your effort and so if you say sanctification is part of salvation then you're saying that your efforts are part of salvation.’

But there was one key problem with that point with Desmond Ford, do you realize what the Bible says about sanctification and God’s role in that? 1Thessalonians 5:23 1Thes 5:23 And the very God of peace sanctify you what? Wholly 100%; so in other words Desmond Ford is saying you’re 100% justified by God but 50% sanctified by yourself, yet the apostle Paul who was his favorite gospel writer, [Desmond Ford] he said that the apostle Paul helps us to understand what Jesus meant in the Gospels and that the apostle Paul in Romans 3, 4 and 5 helps us understand salvation. The apostle Paul here in 1Thessalonians 5 says that we are sanctified 100% by God. Anyway, Ford teaches we’re born sinners and so therefore we can only be legally justified, sanctification is incomplete and so he then goes on to say that basically we cannot live an overcoming life based on the grace of God here on this Earth so when you come to the investigative judgment what would be the point of an investigative judgment if heaven knows that you accepted Jesus in 1995 or 2005 or 2012, what's there to investigate? I mean Scripture teaches that you’re saved by grace, but you will be judged by your works. Why would you need to be judged by your works because we know that we’re born sinners? And Desmond Ford says, ‘look, we’re always going to be sinning and in fact Ellen White says ‘perfect talk requires perfect circulation’, therefore if you cross your legs you’re sinning, and it’s just part of your nature. So he basically said sanctification would never happen in this lifetime. Well what does Ellen White and the Bible really mean about sanctification? And of course there is the famous quote “sanctification is the work of a lifetime” {COL 65.2}.

Do you know what most pastors or believers believe about that? That means that we’ll never get there, but what it means, and Ellen White says this in Faith and Works God requires the entire surrender of the heart, before justification can take place; {FW 100.1} So justification is full surrender, it’s being crucified with Christ. Sanctification is a daily maintaining that surrender that started the justification process, which is why it's the work of a lifetime, and it fits the parable that Jesus told in the book of Mark Mk 4:28 …; first the blade, then the ear, after that the full corn in the ear. It’s perfect at every stage, but only when the full corn in the ear is at a point of maturity after the latter rain has fallen upon it, where it is ripe for harvest.

When Desmond Ford says the sanctuary doctrine is historically taught by Seventh-day Adventist contradicts the New Testament gospel of grace, in reality his gospel of grace is a false gospel. It’s a half gospel that doesn't teach transformation.

Let me close with this statement from Ellen White this is Life Sketches page 278 speaking of the sanctuary message she says: “Our faith in reference to the messages of the first, second, and third angels was correct. The great way-marks we have passed are immovable. Although the hosts of hell may try to tear them from their foundation, and triumph in the thought that they have succeeded, yet they do not succeed. These pillars of truth stand firm as the eternal hills, unmoved by all the efforts of men combined with those of Satan and his host. We can learn much, and should be constantly searching the Scriptures to see if these things are so. God’s people are now to have their eyes fixed on the heavenly sanctuary, where the final ministration of our great High Priest in the work of the judgment is going forward,—where He is interceding for His people.” The Review and Herald, November 27, 1883. {LS 278.2}

I just love the idea that Although the hosts of hell may try to tear these truths from their foundation, they will not succeed. These pillars of truth stand firm as the eternal hills, unmoved by all the efforts of men combined with those of Satan and his host.  Here we are 33 years later nearly 33 years to the day that Desmond Ford made his attack on this doctrine and I’m thankful to say that this doctrine is still standing as firm as the eternal pillars of truth. We need more Seventh-day Adventists to understand the sanctuary message who when a Desmond Ford comes along, are not going to be thrown off and say, ‘Oh well I guess is not true’ and then you have scores about Adventist pastors leaving the ministry, entire congregations leaving the denomination because they’re like, ‘well if Desmond Ford says it’s wrong it must be wrong because I believe whatever Desmond Ford believes and whatever I believe is whatever Desmond Ford believes.’ Please don't be like that. I mean I don’t care if the speaker is a well-known so-called bright light in the GYC movement don’t be that way towards any speaker, I don’t care who he is, or she or whatever. Go back to the Bible and the Spirit of Prophecy and if they say something that contradicts the Bible and the Spirit of Prophecy, they are wrong and the Bible and the Spirit of Prophecy are right, and that's it. I don't care how much education they have, as good as education is, I believe in education, I have education but education doesn't trump the word of God and the Spirit of Prophecy. Let’s close with a word of prayer and then we’ll take a short break before our last presentation.

Father in heaven, we thank you that you have preserved the sanctuary message, and even though Satan and all the forces and hosts of hell with the efforts of men have tried to tear this message down we thank you that they have not succeeded. I pray that we would be faithful to this message and continue to follow you. Be with us as we have one more presentation this afternoon I pray in Jesus name Amen.

All right we’ll take a short break, five minutes preferably and then we’re going to look at the high points of the sanctuary doctrine in the book of Hebrews and we will see what Jesus is doing in heaven right now to prepare a people to stand when he comes in the clouds of Glory.

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