Early Christianity and its significance for Seventh-day Adventist theology
EARLY DEBATES AND THEIR IMPACT ON SEVENTH-DAY ADVENTIST THEOLOGY
The role of Israel in the plan of salvation and in last day events presents one of the hotte st debating topics in Christianity. Throughout the two thousand year history of Chri stianity this debate has continued. This discussion is deeply rooted in t he historical events that occurred during the period of the Jewish–Roman wars between the destruction of the Temple (70 AD) and the Bar Kohba rebellion (136 AD).
Our mission to Jewish people presents a unique challenge and opportunity for Seventh-day Adventists as well as for other Christians. Since the expansion of British Empire began in the 19th century, Protestant Christianity has understood its mission as going out to bring the Gospel to the different corners of the globe to the people who do not have knowledge of the Bible.
It was beautiful summer Sunday of 1985. My friend Victor and I, two high school students, lazily strolled through the streets of Kiev trying to kill a few hours before boarding our train home. Suddenly we heard very unusual sounds for our ears–singing coming from one of the distant corners of the square. When we came through the arch, we arrived at the doors of a Russian Orthodox cathedral.
The nature of the Sanctuary represents a major fundamental issue that separates Seventh-day Adventist theology from the mainstream of Christianity. The structural similarity between the Eastern orthodox cathedral and Jerusalem Temple is emphasized as a proof of the church’s representation of Jerusalem on this earth.1
Nebuchadnezzar knew that the best method to alienate Jews, transform them into harmless puppets, was to change their diet. It is through eating and drinking that the king would try to shake their Jewish identity.
In the days when the judges ruled, there was a famine in the land. And a man from Bethlehem in Judah, together with his wife and two sons, went to live for a while in the country of Moab. The man’s name was Elimelech, and his wife’s name Naomi.
Now Elimelech, Naomi’s husband, died; and she was left with her two sons. They married Moabite women, one named Orpah and the other Ruth.
According to the Bible writers’ own claims, and in harmony with the traditional understanding held by ancient interpreters and most biblical scholars until the rise of historical criticism during the Enlightenment, approximately 35 individuals wrote the Bible over a period of 1,500 years.
I revel in the lights of Christmas! And I am not alone in such reveling. Our wider Christian family is entranced each year by the lavish display of lights so festively decorating our homes. If I were forced to eliminate all types of Christmas decorations but one, I could forego the tree, the tinsel and Christmas balls, the snowflakes, and many other things, but I would keep the lights! Somehow, for me, the holiday lights capture the essence of Christmas.