The beliefs and sentiments expressed by those whose letters appear here are not necessarily shared by the Adventist Review or its editorial staff. These letters have been edited for clarity and length. -- Editors
The excellent article “‘The Sons of God’ and Biblical Cosmology”
by Kim Papaioannou (July 14, 2011) confirmed my own belief that there are other inhabited worlds.
Job 1 pictures a council meeting attended by the sons of God. It appears that this was a regularly scheduled meeting attended by representatives of other worlds. No doubt Adam, as the prince of this world, represented earth on this council before he sinned. When he sinned, he abrogated that position to Satan, who became prince of this world. Although Satan had been cast out of heaven previously, he presented himself as earth’s special representative.
This leads one to believe that these council meetings are held somewhere outside the city, since Satan would not be allowed to enter the city after his rebellion. When Christ died on the cross, he wrested from Satan his exalted status and became earth’s representative. As a result, Satan could no longer enter heaven. This event is described in the Bible as “Satan falling as lightning from heaven, and we are warned “woe unto the inhabitants of earth because the devil has come down among you having great wrath.”
I have one minor correction: The author refers to these sons of God as humans. I think he meant to say “human like” or “humanoid,” since human beings are a distinct species found only on earth. E. G. White pictures “good old Enoch” on a planet with seven moons conversing with one of the inhabitants. She never used the word human. Other than this correction, this was an excellent, well-documented article.
Citrus Heights, California
The Spirit of Christ
It is like a breath of fresh air to read the July 14, 2011 Adventist Review. Bill Knott’s editorial "Ferocious Truths"
and the Ellen G. White article "Growing as a Christian"
gives this issue the “Spirit of Christ.”
I believe it is because of the serious lack of living truth in God’s children as to why, in part, for the extended delay in Jesus’ coming. We must do much more than indoctrinate peculiar present truth positions. We must inculcate the truth as it is in Jesus in our souls.
--Kevin R. James
For More Light
I enjoyed the article “Growing as a Christian”
by Ellen G. White (July 14, 2011). I recently found that many of my contemporaries shy away from Mrs. White’s teachings. When asked why, the two most common answers are her teachings are outdated, and many seem to be uncomfortable with her being labeled as a prophet and how others outside the church may view this.
While Mrs. White addressed many issues that were specific to her time, there are far more broad issues discussed in her many publications that, when put into context, apply just as much today as they did then. Unfortunately, the focus has turned to labels and perceptions rather than the actual purpose of her work.
I have found that Mrs. White’s purpose in her writings was to direct us back to the Bible and the teachings within. She called herself the lesser light pointing to the greater light. After reading many of her publications, it’s clear to me she only desired to enlighten others.
Regarding Larry Blackmer’s article “Adventist Education: Alive and Well”
(July 14, 2011):
Our daughter graduated from Union College in 2010 after spending her whole academic career in Adventist schools. I’m writing to share with you the e-mail we received from Marti Cash, who was, at that time, head cashier for Union College. It sums up exactly why we spent money to have our daughter in the Adventist education system.
“Congratulations!!!! Even though I have not met you in person, I feel like I know you. I have enjoyed helping you and Kristen with the financial part towards her graduation goal. I regularly pray for our UC parents for a special blessing as they work and sacrificially pay for their student’s Christian Education. May God continue to bless you and your family and Kristen as she enters the work field.”
Our daughter had many great Christian teachers along the way, but this e-mail really struck home and, to me, answered what Blackmer described as the ultimate question.
A Memory of Elinor Wilson
Mark Kellner’s brief article about Elinor Wilson
(July 14, 2011) brought back fond memories of Mrs. Wilson (as we used to address her).
My sister, Georgette, and I had just started attending the Adventist Church in Heliopolis, Egypt. We were nominal Christians, confused Protestants having attended Catholic elementary and secondary schools.
First we noticed what a pretty woman Wilson was, always smiling as if she never had a worry in her life. More importantly, we noted that she was as beautiful on the inside as she was on the outside. She took a personal interest in us and was so caring and loving. She invited us young people to her home often for cookies and other homemade goodies. Her husband, N. C. Wilson, was seldom there because he traveled a lot holding evangelistic meeting in various places.
I remember playing the piano for song services at church meeting. She also taught in the Heliopolis Adventist Elementary school. Her students loved her. I know that because my young brother George attended that school. In her own quiet and loving way she touched many lives. I was one of them.
--Laurice Kafrouni Durrant
Blessed by the Beatitudes
I’m writing to express my appreciation for the excellent article, “Reaching the Summit”
by David Asscherick (June 23, 2011). His treatise about the Beatitudes is so insightful and logical. I have read them many times, but never focused on the progression—beginning and ending in the present tense.
The flow of the verses as illustrated in the article bring the sermon full circle. I like the last paragraph: “No matter where we are, heaven was made for all of us. ‘Yours is the kingdom of heaven.’”
I am surprised by David Asscherick’s assertion in “Reaching the Summit”: “If you are not experiencing persecution, I would step out on a limb and ask a question: Is there nothing to persecute?”
Would it not be wiser to ask, “Why expect persecution?” In the world of 2011 surely “persecution” is more the domain of the cult, rather than a worldwide established and accepted Christian denomination?
The world most of us live in appreciates commitment, affirms honesty, and so is more likely to “persecute” indifference and hypocrisy.
Is My Name Written There?
I was deeply touched by Bill Knott’s editorial “Unalienable Right”
(May 12, 2011).
What an earnestly believing and dedicated church member the conference evangelist’s wife must have been, being so worried that their membership be removed for non-attendance while working for the church outside their own congregation.
While I agree with Knott that church membership should be a free choice, and no one should be kept on the books just for record’s or convenience’s sake, I am saddened by the fact that this absolute privilege of being a church member is taken so lightly by so many of us.
I wish we still had that pioneer conviction of sacred obligation to serve the church--be it only as a member, instead of taking the membership for granted and thus having a lukewarm relationship with one another and an often distorted outlook concerning the concept of church membership.
The other side of the coin is that many people do not come to church anymore because they look at their fellow believers and are thus discouraged, or maybe find a convenient excuse not to attend church anymore. Wouldn’t it be nice if we could all be credible examples to one another, of being a good example by not looking at the bad example?
I stand guilty as charged and earnestly pray that I will find my way back to the original concept of church membership, which is to the honor and glorify of our Lord and serve His Bride.
Somerset West, South Africa