John 3:1 - 17
AMP - 1 NOW THERE was a certain man among the Pharisees named Nicodemus, a ruler (a leader, an authority) among the Jews. 2 Who came to Jesus at night and said to Him, Rabbi, we know and are certain that You have come from God [as] a Teacher; for no one can do these signs (these wonderworks, these miracles--and produce the proofs) that You do unless God is with him.
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The 19th-century founder of Seventh-Day Adventism (William Miller) originally predicted that Jesus would visibly return in 1843 or 1844. When this did not take place, two of his followers claimed to have had visions revealing that, instead of coming to earth, Jesus had entered the heavenly temple at that time, making the fulfillment of Miller's prophecy a spiritual one rather than a physical one. Other than a belief that Saturday is the only valid Sabbath (which contradicts Romans 14:5), some Seventh-Day Adventists can hold beliefs identical to orthodox Christians. However, other members of the church have been known to espouse doctrine that differs more fundamentally from that of "mainstream" Christian denominations in the following respects: -- restricting the eating of meat (which led Seventh-Day Adventist John Harvey Kellogg to found his cereal company in Battle Creek, Michigan) -- belief that Satan (rather than Jesus) is the "scapegoat" who will bear believers' sins (contrary to 1 Peter 2:24) -- identification of Jesus as the archangel Michael spoken of in Jude 1:9 -- belief in "soul sleep" prior to the close of the age -- belief in annihilationism (i.e., that the lost do not suffer everlasting punishment)(contrary to Matthew 25:46) -- recognition of extra-biblical writings (by Ellen G. White) and visions (such as those described above) as having the same authority as Scripture.
The Seventh-day Adventist Church (SDA) is a Protestant denomination founded in 1863 by Joseph Bates, J.N. Andrews and James and Ellen White. Contrary to popular belief, William Miller (1782-1849) was not the founder or involved with the SDA formation. Miller was a Baptist preacher credited with the mid-19th-century movement known as Millerism https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Miller_(preacher) and he died 15 years before there was an SDA Church. The SDA believe in the observance of the 7th day Sabbath (Saturday). The belief is based on the 4th Commandment (Ex 20:8-11; Ex 31:18). And SDAs are in good company: God created and kept the Sabbath (Gen 2:2, 3), Jesus while on Earth kept the Sabbath, Paul was a Sabbath keeper, the Apostles and the early Church all kept the Sabbath (Mark 2:27; Luke 4:16; 23:56; Matt 24:20; Acts 13:27; Acts 13;42-44; Acts 17:2; Acts 18:4). According with the Bible, in the New Jerusalem, God’s saints will keep the Sabbath (Isaiah 66:23). "Seventh-day Adventists accept the Bible as the only source of beliefs. We consider our movement to be the result of the Protestant conviction Sola Scriptura - the Bible as the only standard of faith and practice for Christians." https://www.adventist.org/beliefs/fundamental-beliefs/ There are, however, few differences from most Protestant denominations: God alone is immortal (1 Tim 1:17; 6:16). The sinner shall die – not live eternally in hell (Gen 2:16-17; Ezekiel 18:20; Rom 6:23) Until Christ returns, death is an unconscious sleep for all people (John 11:11-14; 1 Cor 15:51-55; Daniel 12:2; John 5:28, 29) The wicked will be consumed/devoured in the hellfire at the end of time (Isaiah 47:14; 2 Peter 2:9; Malachi 4:1, 3; Rev 20:9) Healthy lifestyle as a priority (1 Cor 6:19, 20). Although a plant-based diet is encouraged, meat consumption is allowed but in accordance with God’s instructions regarding clean and unclean food (Lev 11). In July 11 2015, LA Times published the article “Why Loma Linda residents live longer than the rest of us: They treat the body like a temple.” The article explains that the residents of this small California community with the highest concentration of SDAs in the US, live on average 10 more healthy years than the average American by following a Biblical diet and resting on the Sabbath - (the article is available online).
Christians identify each other according to the denomination they belong to, yet God sees us as his children and not according to the denominations, but according to whosoever believes in Him (John 3:16). A born again Christian, whether a 7th Day Adventist or not, reveals what it means to experience the testimony of Jesus Christ. God can see right through us even when we say, "Lord, Lord," and have not the Holy Spirit (Matthew 7:21). Even Nicodemus, as a member of the Sanhedrin, a person who studied the law, revealed himself to Jesus that he had much to learn in Christ and the word of God. Our convictions and interpretations of the bible are never enough to qualify ourselves perfect in the knowledge of God. Even in our theology studies, or having preached countless sermons, or having done crusades that have turned many to God. Being born again is when we can be identified as servants of God not saving our own interests or dogmas, but serving others as God saved us. God knows his sheep and they know His voice (John 10:27). Our question should be, "Whichever denomination we belong to, including the SDAs, are we part of God's flock or not?"
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