Adventist Media Response and Conversation

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

In Reference to an Open Letter to Former Adventists

From For the Gospel Blog A Challenge to Former Adventists

Over at Re-Inventing the Adventist Wheel, Marcel Schwantes has posted an open letter to former Adventists. He makes some interesting observations about former Adventists based on a perusal of various websites listed in his post. His major conclusion is that the rhetoric on many former Adventist websites has betrayed the stated purpose of those sites, namely, to reach out to current Adventists with the good news of the grace of Jesus. While there are details of Marcel's post I disagree with, he makes some valid points. Outlined below is my response to this thought-provoking blog entry, including a discussion of where I believe Marcel has missed the mark.

Marcel's open letter bothered me, seemed a little overly judgmental of former Adventists and I am glad that Greg gave such an excellent response. Take some time to read both the open letter and Greg's response and the comments under both blog posts. You should find it very worthwhile.

4 comments:

al said...

Jesus said there would be weeds mixed in with the wheat, bad theology and good theology. His council was to ignore the bad theology for now and concentrate on the good theology. In spite of “officialdom” we see subjects like IJ really of little importance to the upcoming generation. With a little more neglect it will be relegated to a place in history, something we once thought but no longer, a stepping stone to where we are today. We have to use God’s principles to build up His Kingdom or it is not His Kingdom we are building.

Marcel said...

Ron,

Your perception of my overly judgmental attitude is acknowledged. Perhaps I was for some readers. For the most part, though, former SDAs of a centered and balanced view, including Greg, seem to be agreeing that there is a growing fringe of anti-SDA ex-SDAers hellbent (too strong?) on disproving and discarding all of Adventism, which I depicted in my article. That's really the faction I wanted to shed light on. I may have painted with a broad brush myself and can admit to that. Check out the latest comments on Greg's site from Stan Ermshar. He along with Greg just got booted out of Former Adventist Fellowship (FAF) forum for the same reasons I speak of. And they are both formers!

Ron Corson said...

Well if being kicked off a forum is indication of that groups overall fringe-ability then I can say that I have been disfellowshipped from three groups. Conversations about God the forum site at Pineknoll, HeavenlySanctuary.com and even the once illustrious SDAnet.org. That last one they said that I was kicked off but they nor I can find any evidence of such happening, but because they think it happened it can't be questioned.

The fact in all those instances is that the forums are run by the people who own them and they can do what they please. They are not really organizations and they are not really run by people that have been chosen to represent the people on the forum. So in many cases it is simply a reflection of the few. the many other forum members often have no idea what the forum owner is doing or has done.

On the other note, former Adventists like former Mormons or Catholics or former anything are usually fairly active against what they have left. The whole Protestant Reformation is a good example. If they did not repudiate their former church it is likely they would not have left that church. I can't blame them of being hellbent against something that they have repudiated, it seems a natural result of such an action.

Now as an current Adventist maybe I don't like what they are saying or how they are saying it but I really shouldn't expect them to be benign toward something they rejected after considerable time in it.

It may be that they have an equal concern for their brethren that I have for my brethren in the Adventist church. It may be that we are in substantial agreement on certain issues also. But the question of how do we arrive at certain changes is always going to be divisive.

Of course the division is not only found on the progressive side of Adventism but the traditional side as well and that will be the subject of my next post.

Ron Corson said...

Oops I should have noted that Conversations About God did not really kick me off, the owner said I should take a hiatus so that some of the more quiet people could have a turn. Then about 2 or 3 years later I asked to subscribe again and was told no. The passive aggressive method I guess.

You can read that forum at:
http://www.pineknoll.org/cag/