HAVE WE FORGOTTEN WHO WE ARE?

I thought today I would not be given a word from the Lord to share; however, I was wrong.  While going through my newsfeed I came across photos of my home-church in Beacon, New York, Beacon Light Tabernacle of Seventh Day Adventists, some of which showed the pastor, of whom I don’t know.  However, I can tell you this, IF I were still home, I would not sit still as long as what I am seeing was present.  Review the photo.  Do you see what is wrong?  How many of you, having grown up Adventist, have ever seen any of those old pastors doing this?  Let me ask the question:  Is it proper now or was it proper then?  What’s the difference?  The answer is clear:  we have forgotten who we are.

Ring-wearing pastor during 11:00 hour worship service!

Ring-wearing pastor during 11:00 hour worship service!

I can go back to the founder of the church, a “great” man of God, Elder George Sampson, Sr.  He wasn’t a “credentialed” pastor, but nobody cared for the honorable, considerate life he lead and still leading.  It is my understanding because of his work and having begun most of the churches in the Hudson Valley, he was later given credentials; but here is one who IS credentialed standing where others have stood before him having let down the standard.  Many years ago when visiting my birth-home’s church, Glenville SDA of Cleveland, Ohio, I knew I would never, ever visit again when I saw, who later someone shared with me the pastor—then, up on the pulpit wearing a “Roman collar”.  I could only imagine men like my grandfather having sat up in their graves, shaking their head.  I “shook” the dust from my feet and kept it moving.

How can we possibly preach the “standard” of our great faith when the leaders of this faith continue to look more and more like the world’s church?  How can we continue distinguishing ourselves as being different, “peculiar” is the word when we in our appearance look just like them?  I can only think those who are placed in responsible positions cannot preach the plain and pointed word as long as we are not convicted ourselves by the Word.  I still bear the mark of having worn my wedding band but that will soon fade away.  I am not proud of having known better and fell because of whatever reason which will NEVER be good enough to justify my action, but we are all given second chances.  However, those who have grown in the church, attended our universities and given conference positions should long be past those areas us laymen folk trod.  Who’s holding up the standard in the conference offices?

Many will argue, “What is wrong with the wearing of a wedding band?”  If you have to ask the question then it is ONLY because conversion hasn’t taken place in your life!  SEVENTH-DAY ADVENTISTS DO NOT WEAR JEWELRY.  It is our belief.  It is our practice and there is no justification for it, Biblically nor Spirit of Prophecy reckoning and if you then want to question whether it is a matter of salvation, my answer would have to be:  “he that knoweth what to do and doeth it not it is a sin.”  And we know sin, any sin, is enough to keep you out of the Kingdom, but those who stand before us, pastors and elders are held to an even higher standard, just as satan was held to a higher standard than the “regular” angels.  Probation doesn’t last as long for them as for the commoners.

If our pastorate is not called into accountability by their superiors then it is up to the church they’re assigned to make it an issue.  I can see someone inviting a friend to worship with them, having heard the truth about Adventists and then fall into confusion when the pastor robed in his man-made righteousness bearing his worldly, pagan symbol of matrimony indicative the heart has not made it to the point where it can stand alone from all of the practices and appearances of Babylon.

 

They may forget, but I haven’t.

 

March 10, 2015

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