Adventist Media Response and Conversation

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Andreasen and the Questions on Doctrines Controversy has an interesting article on the background of M.L. Andreasen and his fight against the book Questions on Doctrines.

“Questions on Doctrine” and M. L. Andreasen: The Behind-the-Scenes Interactions

I presented the following paper at the Association of Seventh-day Adventist Historians meeting at Oakwood College on April 20, 2007. It comes from the section in chapter 4 of my doctoral dissertation where I discuss the reactions by Adventists to the book, “Questions on Doctrine.” My dissertation is entitled “Reactions to Seventh-day Adventist Evangelical Conferences and Questions on Doctrine, 1955-1971″ (Andrews University, 2005).

Perhaps no other book has aroused so much controversy in the history of the Seventh-day Adventist Church as the 1957 publication of Seventh-day Adventists Answer Questions on Doctrine. The book was published as both a direct result of and a representative response to the Seventh-day Adventist Evangelical Conferences of 1955-1956, involving Walter Martin and Donald Grey Barnhouse on the evangelical side and a number of General Conference leaders on the Adventist side. Questions on Doctrine was to be the apology par excellence of Adventism.

It is interesting for a couple of reasons. One is that Andreasen whose theology is strikingly bad on this issue became the forerunner of a growing movement in the SDA church. Adventists who hold to last generation sinless perfection and those who hold to Christ having a sinful human nature; (AKA Postlapsarian nature yet never sinning though having the same propensities to sin as all mankind after the fall). A largely untenable position if one takes seriously that Jesus Christ was and is God.

Even though I can’t help but strongly disagree with Andreasen’s theology I find myself sympathizing with his struggle with the Adventist church leadership. As the leadership used threats and coercion and failed to really hold a dialog with him. As I look at the history from our perspective today I can’t help but think that relating to him in a more straight forward manner could have greatly helped the church from diverging into problematic theology as well as even greater problems when it comes to the use of Ellen White’s writings. If you care about Adventist history this is important reading.

Julius is also offering for sale copies of his dissertation, as he writes:

If you’re interested in purchasing a copy of my dissertation, email me at: In response to inquires about my dissertation, I’m getting 150 copies printed for the upcoming QOD 50th Anniversary Conference.

Although, I like many cheapskates, often go by the expression if you have to ask then you can’t afford it. Hopefully that is not the case however.

Update: I received the following information from Julius :

It's $24, including postage.  It's 440 pp. from cover
to cover. I'm basically trying recoup the cost of
the printing. Because it's a short run, the per-copy
cost is higher than I'd like it to be.

The book is the dissertation
entitled “Reactions to
Seventh-day Adventist
Evangelical Conferences and
Questions on Doctrine, 1955-1971″
University, 2005).

No comments: