“Let My People Go!” Adventism and the Tyranny of the Church Building

“Let My People Go!” Adventism and the Tyranny of the Church Building

The church building has over the years evolved to become an important part of religious practice. This has been the place where rituals, sermons, communion, funeral services, matrimonial services, prayer, religious music, baptism, and various aspects of religion find their expression. As a liturgical church, Adventists have a special relationship w

Constructing a Christ-Centered Adventist Faith, Part 5: Jesus Rules Over Death

Constructing a Christ-Centered Adventist Faith, Part 5: Jesus Rules Over Death

Dealing with Death “But I do not want you to be ignorant brethren, concerning those who have fallen asleep, lest you sorrow as others who have no hope.”[1] For most people, death is not an easy thing to swallow. And for good reason, because we were not created to die. God created humanity with the intent that we would always live life to the fulles

Christian Mentoring 101

Christian Mentoring 101

Mentoring in Christianity—specifically in Christian ministry leadership—is important because your mentees may be gifted by God, but they are inexperienced in life and ministry and need your help in hearing and interpreting God’s voice, His call, and His will, and effectively living the Christian life, to have them mature—not just as a leader, but—a

Constructing a Christ-Centered Adventist Faith, Part 4: Jesus and the 3 Angels

Constructing a Christ-Centered Adventist Faith, Part 4: Jesus and the 3 Angels

The Focal Point of God’s End-Time Message   “Then I saw another angel flying in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach to those who dwell on the earth—to every nation, tribe, tongue, and people.”[1] The 3 Angels’ Messages come at a climactic point in the book of Revelation. In chapters 13 and 14 of this apocalyptic book,

Binging on Meaning: Cults, Adventism’s “Fringe”, and Unbelief

Binging on Meaning: Cults, Adventism’s “Fringe”, and Unbelief

Soon after I became a pastor, I started wrestling with the phenomenon of cults: wondering what separates my religion from a cult. I do not mean cult as in a church that diverges from orthodox Christian teachings like the trinity. Nor do I mean merely a new religious movement (value-neutral term of art used in academic religion research instead of c

Constructing a Christ-Centered Adventist Faith, Part 2: Did Jesus Put an End to the Law?

Constructing a Christ-Centered Adventist Faith, Part 2: Did Jesus Put an End to the Law?

“For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes.”[1] This scripture has often been used to try to prove that now that we are under a new covenant the law of God is no longer something that we need to follow. I was watching a debate recently where the 10 Commandments were being discussed, and a Christian man who believed

Recontextualizing the Adventist Message for the African Continent

Recontextualizing the Adventist Message for the African Continent

The Africanization of Adventism project has been raging with Africans themselves echoing different views on the necessity of this controversial move. Arguments against this are primarily premised on fears on whether this will divert the movement from the noble work of proclaiming the second coming of Jesus, whether this drive is indeed salvific, be

Why Your Church Must Change, Even if You Don’t Want It To

Why Your Church Must Change, Even if You Don’t Want It To

I need you to use your imagination with me today.   But first, let me paint a picture.   Just a few months ago, most of our churches were tracking along as usual. We had lots of events, a big central program every weekend that we put most of our energy into, and our usual Sabbath Schools, prayer meetings, etc.   Then, along came the

Reimagining Adventism: Baptism and Absurdity, Part 3

Reimagining Adventism: Baptism and Absurdity, Part 3

Every institution that we trust lies to us. - Dave Chapelle In the previous article, we touched on the nature of inclusivity and exclusivity in the church. We saw that the church can be passively exclusive while imagining itself actively inclusive by nurturing structures, cultures, and systems that are designed for one kind of demographic. In Adven

On the Question of Gay Identity and Christian Sexual Ethics

On the Question of Gay Identity and Christian Sexual Ethics

On the question of gay identity and Christian sexual ethics, I start with a bare-bones theology of group identity drawn from Acts 17:26–27. In his discourse at the Areopagus, Paul briefly laid out how the Athenians have already groped toward a knowledge of God. It is because God arranges history so that, through the formation and shifting of group