When I was about seven years old, Denver South SDA church updated their lower level flooring. The faded orange carpet dated back to when my dad was in Primary and stains had begun to evoke images of sickness rather than sunlight. Those in charge elected to use a purple speckled pattern as a replacement and it was installed throughout the basement. A dark purple border ran along the walls from the fellowship hall to the Pathfinders trophy case.
I'm gonna talk with the Prince of Peace
Down by the Riverside
Ain't gonna study war no more
Down by the riverside is one of my all-time favorite worship songs. I realized this while standing outside a Primary Sabbath School room on a Sabbath following a particularly violent week in the news. There’s no balm in Gilead stronger than the voices of children singing “we ain’t gonna study war no more.”
1. Some Adventists were among 10,000 British Conscientious Objectors who spent World War One in Dartmoor prison. Victor Hulbert, who is creating a documentary about this historical episode, shared his research with more than 500 members of Stanborough Park Seventh-day Adventist Church in Watford, England recently.
After becoming an Adventist in high school, I struggled to understand the precise relationship between salvation and liberation, grace and human wellbeing in the Christian gospel. No matter which church I attended, I was repeatedly told that, unlike other churches, Adventists reject the dualistic understanding of mind and body, spirit and matter. “Adventists have a holistic understanding of human beings,” many pastors insisted. Why else would they tell us to rest on Sabbath and become vegetarians? This is what I have always appreciated about the Adventist Church.
The General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists International Conference on the Bible and Science takes place from August 15-24, 2014. I am delighted to be able to attend. While in the mountains of Nevada and Utah, I hope to hear some answers to questions that nag at my mind concerning faith and science.
1. On July 25, Stephen Michaels Junior, a 28-year-old teacher at the Ephesus Seventh-day Adventist School in Belize, was found murdered in his home. "One week ago, the body of evangelist Oscar Lambey was found dead in the yard of that school." No connections between the murders have been reported.
Editor's note: I've heard a lot of talk about being "spiritual but not religious." I've recieved emails about the Dalai Lama's facebook post calling for thought about "spirituality and ethics beyond religion altogether" and this huffington post article from a pastor fed up with the distinction. It's all very interesting, so I was thrilled to recieve this article from Dr.
As a child, I developed an interest in the Bible only after I realized there were stories my Sabbath School teachers left out. For exampleI remember being shocked when I discovered that Joseph had a sister, Dinah. Why would everyone mention every single brother and question me to see if I could remember their different roles in his story, but no one mentioned his sister?
Since I can remember, I have been taught to be nice, and being nice usually involves two things: a verb and a sacrifice. “Share your toys,” “Give away your old clothes,” “Play with that kid that you don’t like.” This act, usually encouraged by parents or teachers, was something I didn’t always want to do, but I was promised that it was for the greater good, and as side bonuses, people would think highly of me and I’d feel good about myself.
After a career in clinical nutrition, Chris Oberg turned to biblical studies. Undergraduate and graduate work at La Sierra University prepared her for a pastoral vocation that now unfolds at the site where she began her serious engagement with the Bible. She is lead pastor of the La Sierra University Church, where the congregation’s ministry, she says, focuses on “the younger generations” and on what she calls “92505,” her local community.
1. Over 30,000 Adventists in Zimbabwe celebrated religious liberty in the country. Southern African-Indian Ocean Division’s Communication Director, Paul Charles, stated that the purpose of the function was for SDAs “To express their profound appreciation to the government of Zimbabwe for the religious freedom the church was enjoying.”
Kinship Kampmeeting was held in Atlanta, GA this year from July 15-19. Their mission is to "Provide a safe spiritual and social community to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender & intersex current and former Seventh-day Adventists around the world."
“If you had known what these words mean, ‘I desire mercy, not sacrifice,’ you would not have condemned the innocent.”—Jesus (Matthew 12.7)