Adventist Media Response and Conversation

Wednesday, March 02, 2005

Adventism's latest offshoot

Here is an article from the right wing of the SDA movement. The first thing I noticed here is that in the area of offshoots they don't mention people like "Hope International" who produce "our Firm Foundation Magazine" or people like the "The Association of Creation 7th Day Adventists".

Adventism's Latest Offshoot, Pt. 1:

This article co-authored by Pr. Larry Kirkpatrick, Pr. Kevin D. Paulson, and Associate David Qualls on August 12 and 13 and published on August 13, 2004.
The Launch of Adventism's Latest Offshoot

First there was the Messenger Party, then the Seventh-day Adventist Reform Movement. In short order came the Shepherd's Rod. Herbert W. Armstrong launched the Worldwide Church of God, then along came the Branch Davidians. Next, the Brinsmead group, the post-Glacier View “Gospel Fellowship” movement inspired by Desmond Ford's attack on the sanctuary doctrine, then the Steps to Life home church movement.

Now comes “Mission Catalyst Network.”

A group of (former) Seventh-day Adventist Church employees, who insist that the structure has lost its evangelistic potential, are in the process of forming a break-away organization of churches which will be separate from the denomination that has so long employed them. They insist that they are

An association of churches that embrace the fundamental beliefs of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, are outreach focused, grace oriented, and fully committed to God (, accessed 6:13 p.m. August 12, 2004 PDT).

However, their own published doctrinal mission statement belies this claim. Entirely absent from it is any mention of the investigative judgment, the remnant Church, the prophetic gift as manifest through Ellen G. White, or church standards. Claiming that as a Church they are the “Same cart” but with “new wheels,” the absence of these key features and the presence of others which we shall in this series mention, make clear that this is an altogether different “cart.”

Carefully endeavoring to cloak their true nature, this break-away group, Adventism's newest offshoot, claims it is not separate from us. Yet Scripture warns:

They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would no doubt have continued with us: but they went out, that they might be made manifest that they were not all of us (1 John 2:19).

The exact sequence in which events were shaped is not always readily traceable. Some now involved in the Offshoot were terminated in March. The domain name “” was registered in May. Adventist leaders met with Gladden in August. Whatever we may say about what led to what, the separation is here.
Ringleaders in Apostasy

The new offshoot has, of course, its own set of leaders. As the Spirit of Prophecy says, “Those who have been regarded as worthy and righteous prove to be ring-leaders in apostasy...” (Ellen G. White, Testimonies, vol. 5, p. 212). These people, who by and large have been respected as leaders in church planting in the denomination, believe that God is leading them to form a new organization of churches. Their non-profit corporation, their website, their own structures and plans, did not spring up 24 hours ago. It has been a long and laborious pathway to separation. Who are these people?

The names of those associated with this project which follow include both ringleaders in this apostasy and also those who have provided resource papers that hang on the offshoot's website.

The offshoot includes Ron Gladden, until recently employed at North Pacific and Mid-America Unions as Director for Church Planting (As identified by the Adventist Review online at Ron Gladden, “Building Castles for the Kingdom,” accessed August 12, 2004, 7:40 p.m. PDT).


Ron Corson said...

After mentioning“Grace Place”and The Damascus Road Community Church, The above article says:

"Each time one of the “grace oriented” churches departs, we are told that the issue is not doctrinal. Yet we are often in the same articles told that there is some form of doctrinal problem, usually left unspecified."

Obviously in the church splits that I am aware of the issues are always doctrinal. Though the article may be correct that the offical SDA version is that it is not doctrinal. It is rather like that traditional and also false view that people don't leave the SDA church over doctrines but over how they are personally treated by others in the church. The SDA church has a difficult time in thinking it may have doctrinal errors.

Ron Corson said...

After finishing both articles in his series I looked at the website
Where they state:

“Teaching them to observe all things” is the second. This means all the teachings of the Bible. There are a minimum number of beliefs that help bring a coherent voice to our message. They include the following:"

Now I don't think there is any Bible teaching that includes the Investigative Judgement, Ellen White as Prophet, or the remnant status of the SDA church.

So it is kind of hard to take Kirkpatricks criticism as seriously as he intends.

Anonymous said...

In my humble opinion, I find it fascinating that people don’t understand why other people will break fellowship with each other over theological or worship styles. Those are the very reasons why people join churches, to fellowship with likeminded people and if the people they fellowship with no longer see eye to eye well the split is logical and inevitable. What SDA leadership should be mindful of is not the “off-shoot” splits or independents, instead they should focus on delivering a clear presentation in their ministries of the doctrinal beliefs they hold paramount. Don’t sugar coat it for people who are semi convinced. It is better to have three thoroughly convinced and committed converts than 20,000 wishy washy ones.