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The 3rd Luminous Mystery

15

July 2, 2013 by mattfradd


Sermon-on-the-Mount-Copenhagen-Church-Altar-Painting

The Rosary,” wrote Blessed Pope John Paul II, “precisely because it starts with Mary’s own experience, is an exquisitely contemplative prayer. Without this contemplative dimension, it would lose its meaning.”

Pope Paul VI wrote that “without [this contemplation,] the Rosary is a body without a soul, and its recitation is in danger of becoming a mechanical repetition of formulas and of going counter to the warning of Christ: ‘And in praying do not heap up empty phrases as the Gentiles do; for they think that they will be heard for their many words’ (Mt 6:7).’”

Because of this, it is vital that Christians familiarize themselves with the Scriptures in order to meditate on the mysteries of the life of Christ.

Below is the third Luminous mystery. To see other mysteries, click here.

The Proclamation of the Kingdom of God (Matthew 10:7-16)

After Jesus “gave [the twelve disciples] authority over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal every disease and every infirmity” (10:1), he sends them to the “lost sheep of the house of Israel” (10:6) to proclaim the kingdom of heaven. He orders them to heal the sick, raise the dead and cast out demons.

Insight

In his book Jesus of Nazareth, Pope Benedict tells us that “[t]he phrase ‘Kingdom of God’ occurs 122 times in the New Testament” and that “99 of these passages are found in the three Synoptic Gospels, and 90 of these 99 texts report words of Jesus.”

What is the kingdom of God? The Church Fathers identified three harmonizing dimensions: 1) The first dimension is the Christological dimension. 2) The idealistic or mystical dimension, and 3) The ecclesiastical dimension.

The Christological Dimension

Here we see that “the Kingdom is not a thing, it is not a geographical dominion like worldly kingdoms. It is a person; it is he. On this interpretation, the term ‘Kingdom of God’ is itself a veiled Christology. By the way in which he speaks of the Kingdom of God, Jesus leads men to realize the overwhelming fact that in him God himself is present among them, that he is God’s presence.”

The Idealistic/Mystical Dimension

Here we see that the kingdom of God resides in the heart of man. Quoting Church Father Origen, Pope Benedict writes, “[T]hose who pray for the coming of the Kingdom of God pray without any doubt for the Kingdom of God that they contain in themselves, and they pray that this kingdom might bear fruit and attain its fullness. For in every holy man it is God who reigns [exercises dominion, is the kingdom of God]…. So if we want God to reign in us [his Kingdom to be in us], then sin must not be allowed to reign in our mortal body (Rom 6:12)…. Then let God stroll at leisure in us as in a spiritual paradise (Gen 3:8) and rule in us alone with his Christ (Patrologia Graeca II, pp. 495f).” [15]

The Ecclesiastical Dimension

Here we see that the kingdom of God is “a present, although mixed, reality, that will be perfectly realized at the end of history.” [16]

This current mixed state can be seen as the Church on earth, which grows in the field of the world with both weeds and wheat until the harvest, when Christ says he will “tell the reapers, Gather the weeds first and bind them in bundles to be burned. But gather the wheat into my barn” (Mt 13:30). The barn can be seen as the Church in heaven, toward which the kingdom of God on earth is journeying.

Personal Application

One wonders how the apostles felt about the mission Jesus was sending them on. Were they excited? Apprehensive? Were they worried about looking foolish? Every miracle performed by Christ and the apostles is a sign of a deeper reality. After all, the sick who were healed would get sick again, and the dead who were raised had to die again.

This fourth luminous mystery challenges us to reflect upon our own desire (or lack thereof) to proclaim the kingdom of God. As Catholic Christians we have the unmerited privilege of guiding our peers, both Catholic and non-Catholic, to the sacraments Christ gives us. It is through these sacraments that Christ continues to heal the sick and raise the dead, sometimes physically but always spiritually

—–

[15] Ibid., 40; brackets and ellipses are Pope Benedict’s.

[16] Scott Hahn, Catholic Bible Dictionary, s.v. “Kingdom.”

15 thoughts on “The 3rd Luminous Mystery

  1. Hi Matt, could you provide the quote of Pope Paul VI’s comment?

  2. wordsaver says:

    When I pray Rosary, I can not say it all, but I start with Mary and than, in the middle of that pray suddenly I start to speak to Jesus. that happens to me often.The Kingdom of God is in me, but also it is for me a biblical cloud around me.Pardon my English.

  3. […] Pope Paul VI wrote that “without [this contemplation,] the Rosary is a body without a soul, and its recitation is in danger …read more […]

  4. phil says:

    The ‘Kingdom of Heaven’ and the ‘Kingdom of God’. Is this one and the same thing, I’m a little confused. Both terms are used in the Gospels.

  5. Curtis Fleming says:

    Where in the scriptures are we encouraged to use the rosary? is the rosary even biblical? should this matter?

    Contemplative & Centring prayer is not Christian, it’s used in the occult to empty ones mind and be entered by satanic influences. (Google this & find out for yourself). We should use Jesus’ example on how to pray (Matt 6:9-13).

    “Kingdom of God” also referred to as the “kingdom of heaven” as Jews refrained from using the name of God. We need to acknowledge that all things were created by God for Him (Gen 1; 2 on) and all creation is Gods. Also, Israel in particular (Gods chosen people are His kingdom). Isaiah 43:15 “I am the Lord, your Holy One, Israel’s Creator, your King.”

    John the baptist preached the kingdom of God and prepared the way for Jesus’ 1st appearance (John 1). Jesus heralded “repent and believe” & proclaimed the “kingdom of God has come near” (John 1:15)

    Very briefly, we understand the pharisees, saducees, and many of Gods chosen Jewish people rejected Jesus and killed Him. God allowed His message of love, grace, forgiveness and salvation in Jesus to go out to the Gentiles extending His kingdom to the Gentiles (Acts 28:28; 13:26, 46; Romans 11:11).

    Besides the presence of God incarnate in Christ, there is a real future aspect of “the kingdom of God” and theological studies into this future aspect is often referred to as “eschatology”.

    1) Matt 6:10 In the Lords prayer, Jesus refers to a future more forthcoming of Gods kingdom.
    2) Mark 9:1 Gods kingdom not yet seen in full glory
    3) Mark 9:47 “And if thine eye offend thee, pluck it out: it is better for thee to enter into the kingdom of God with one eye, than having two eyes to be cast into hell fire:”
    4) Daniel 12:1-3 “1At that time Michael, the great prince who protects your people, will arise. There will be a time of distress such as has not happened from the beginning of nations until then. But at that time your people—everyone whose name is found written in the book—will be delivered. 2 Multitudes who sleep in the dust of the earth will awake: some to everlasting life, others to shame and everlasting contempt. 3 Those who are wise[a] will shine like the brightness of the heavens, and those who lead many to righteousness, like the stars for ever and ever.”

    Finally, Matthew 7:21-23 “Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. 22Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? 23And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.” It is clear there are people who believe they will be saved and are presently saved when they are not unless they accept Jesus & His teachings and believe in Him (John 3:16). Proverbs 14:12 “There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.”

    Other biblical teachings which have been lost or neglected:
    >>>>The 7th day sabbath<<<>>>Pre-advent judgement<<<<>>>State of the dead<<<<>>>Healthy living<<<<>>>2nd coming of Jesus<<<<<

    Reflect on this last message found in Revelation 14:6-12 (The three angels messages) saying Babylon is fallen (false teaching) and to come and worship the true Creator, that those who receive of the mark of the beast (Sunday is her mark).
    Revelation 18:4 "…Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues."

    God love Catholics and He wants you to know Roman Catholicism is not preaching or teaching the truth. The scriptures contain the truth. Read your bibles my brothers and sisters,

    Much love,

    Curtis

    • phil says:

      When Jesus returns at the second comming, is this to establish the ‘Kingdom of God’ here on earth for us mortals or in ‘Heaven’ as immortals.

      • Curtis Fleming says:

        All is the kingdom of God, He created and owns all creation. From scriptures, I believe the actual kingdom of God is being in His presence. When Jesus was with us, God was with us and His name was called Emmanuel (God with us). However, the Lords prayer alone testifies that the actual kingdom of God was not fully manifest as He prayed seeking the Father “your kingdom come”.
        Luke 17:21 suggests that the kingdom of God was present then as Jesus responds to the Pharisees’ question about when the kingdom of God comes by the startling claim that “the kingdom of God is among you.”
        When Jesus ascended back to heaven, He promised us the comforter (Holy Spirit) and said He would never leave us. Gods presence is with us if we seek diligently for God and ask for His Spirit.
        Jesus used many parables and a few refer to the kingdom of God. “The pearl”, “The treasure in the field”, “the banquet”… If you read these parables, not all find it. These parables teach us that if we want Jesus’ salvation, we need to seek it with all we have. Equally important to mention, any works we do does not bring our salvation, we are saved in faith! our works manifest our faith.

        I will conclude with this beautiful verse in Hebrews 11:6

        “But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.”

    • Caroline says:

      Curtis,
      The Roman Catholic Church has the fullness of worshipping God. What did the people do before the Bible was written? They followed Tradition and the Church Fathers. I strongly urge you to pray to the Holy Spirit to show you how true the Roman Catholic Church is. Great resources are Scott Hahn and Tim Staples as well as anyone here at Catholic Answers. I wish we would stop trying to prove one another wrong. Focus on what we have in common which is the belief in Jesus as our Savior!!!

      • Curtis Fleming says:

        Hi Caroline,

        Since Adam to Moses, the gospel was passed orally until Moses was charged in writing the first 5 books (which really he transcribed into a codex all that had happened since the creation of the world). The rest of the OT also includes other books written before the time of Jesus (books on kings, judges, poetry, minor prophets etc). Since Jesus, we have the NT writings. At the start of the early Christian church, when Jesus had ascended back to heaven, the Christian church was pure. It had just had Jesus train for 3.5 years, the 12 disciples and Who radically changed His followers entire misunderstanding on their fundamental beliefs.

        The early Christian church had all the truths contained in the OT & all of Jesus’ teachings still fresh in their minds. How was the new testament formed? The answer is not very clear, but sources indicate the Council of Nicaea in 325 AD involved 300 scholars who worked under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit to collect the inspired books of the bible into into one whole book. These scholars also removed many books believed to have been uninspired additionally. This is a very interesting time in history as this Council was authorised by the Roman emperor Constantine who in 312-313 AD pseudo-converted to Christianity for political reasons and in 321 AD changed the 7th day sabbath to the 1st day (Sunday) in honor of the sun god. You really should do some research about Constantine and this time of Roman history as Paganism was rife, while Christians and Jews at the time were being heavily persecuted against. When Constantine superficially converted to Christianity about 313AD, history saw a ‘shaking of hands’ between Christianity and Paganism.

        Lucifer, had previously not been successful in causing Jesus to sin or succumb to his 3 well known temptations: (stones to bread; presumption or having His angels catch Him if He was to leap from the temple; or to acknowledge Lucifer as ruler or sovereign). Our wonderful and majestic Jesus defeated Lucifer during every encounter and ultimately on the cross and paid our penalty, death, that He overcame that we may overcome. Let me digress for one moment, the controversy between Jesus and Lucifer began in heaven, the very centre of Gods’ government. Heaven is governed by Gods love and all the angels worship God. Before the creation of our world, and before Lucifer was known as Satan (the adversary), he was the most beautiful and spectacular covering cherubs in heaven, in the very presence of God. Lucifer was the choir master of all other angels and 4th in chain of command in heaven. He was made perfect. It’s not known how Lucifer became sinful (and is called “the mystery of iniquity”), yet it’s known that he became jealous of Jesus (who is God) and coveted the worship that God received by all angels and created beings. God knew the thoughts, intentions and plannings of Lucifer and attempted to reason with him. Lucifer continued and plotted against Gods government rallying angels (all who trusted him as before this time, none had ever heard a lie). God is love and His character is manifested in the divine 10 commandments written by His finger on the two tables of stone that were delivered on mount Sinai to the Israelites. God, being the essence of perfect agape love, cannot lie, murder, steal etc. to achieve His purpose. Lucifer on the other hand could use any tactics against God and did. Lucifer conspired against God with the angels alleging God was not fair in receiving their worship etc. Lucifer was so deceitful and cunning, that he deceived 1/3 of all heavens angels in his plot against God. Why didn’t God simply destroy Lucifer at this time and do away with this problem? Because God being infinitely wise beyond our human understanding saw that this problem with sin needed to develop for all unfallen angels and beings, including fallen humans and fallen angels. To realise that God is just and right and deserving of our worship and that sin should never occur again once it has fully grown to maturity and all see its true wickedness. God gives us in Genesis 3:15 the first prophecy of this conflict between Christ and Satan.

        Returning to the time of Rome, prior to 313AD, Lucifer had been persecuting Christians severely (in arenas, burning them, crucifying them etc.) as this was his attempt to wipe out Gods plan to save humanity. When he realised this was not successful in stopping the growth of Christianity, as many more would arise when one was killed, he changed his tactic and entered the Christian church. Constantine attempted to cause peace and united Paganism and Christianity and welcomed pagans to become Christians. During this time, much paganism entered into the church and can still be seen today in Roman Catholicism through for example (idol worship; sun worship; sacraments; indulgences; human traditions & rituals etc). The church eventually took away from the people Gods’ scriptures, the priests were the only people who could read from the scriptures as it was not in the language of the common people nor were they permitted to read it. Teachings about purgatory and going to heaven or hell when one dies formed (mixing pagan beliefs with a Christian-sugarcoating. Sunday sacredness was introduced after some time also which all was predicted since Daniel 7:25.

        Although this sounds unlikely and absurd, history does not lie and it’s well recorded in history books about the “Holy Roman Catholic Church” persecuting millions of so called heretics (those who believed indifferently to her). Faithful men and women of God in the Christian church seeing this desolation entering her had no other choice but leave. Such groups became known as the Huguenots, Waldenses, and Catharians. These groups studied and memorised the scriptures and lived in hiding places in wilderness areas to practice their faith in Jesus and the teachings of the scriptures. History reports many of these groups were hunted down and slaughtered by armies of the Roman Catholic Church. The purpose of my inclusion of these horrendous stories in history is not to attack the Catholic church, rather open eyes to the reality of Lucifers grand scheme and deception in using Christianity as a guise against Gods people. God always had a plan to return His people from error and it says in Acts 3:21 “Whom the heaven must receive until the times of restitution of all things, which God hath spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began.” His plan is to restore all things back to His way in complete truth in Jesus Christ.

        God used people He rose up and started the reformation times. John Wycliffe, Martin Luther, John Smyth, John Calvin etc. Each contributed to restoring vital truths. The scriptures were translated into the language of the common man and became available to everyone to understand. Baptism by immersion rather than infant sprinkling was restored. Prayer to God in heaven and not to a priest. Witnessing was rediscovered to the world with the truth. Jesus was rediscovered as the only source of salvation in which we are saved by grace through faith in Jesus and not through an indulgence.

        Now, not all truths were yet restored or rediscovered and still needed to be. We have the ark of the testimony in the most holy place yet. Inside contained the 10 commandments (Gods moral law which was written with His own finger). All reformers still worshipped on Sunday and declared sola scriptura, but did not know of the biblical truth about the 7th day sabbath or 4th commandment. During the reformation period, the reformation reached such a stage where the reformers had such influence and strong conviction that the Roman Catholic Church came together to consider these arguments from the reformers. This was “The Council of Trent”. The reformers claimed “sola scriptura” in the Council of Trent. The reformation failed on this point as the reformists worshipped on Sunday, the 1st day of the week and because the reformers held one teaching especially which was not sola scriptura, their argument lost.

        I could continue, but it’s already 2:25 am here in Brisbane, Australia and I have work in the morning and it’s becoming very long already. I would encourage you all to please read your bibles and to become acquainted with my best friend Jesus. Two wonderful books called “the great controversy” & “the desire of ages” by Ellen G. White.

        Much love and blessings,

        Curtis

    • Chris Byrum says:

      Curtis,

      I attend a reformed protestant church, and I do read my bible. I share with others from scripture, I study it with my children, and it breathes life into me.

      That being said, EVERYBODY uses Mark 7:21-23 when they are shaking the heretic stick another body of Christians and telling them “you think you’re saved but you aren’t”. Now sometimes they might be right. They might be pointing out legitimate heresies. Then again, there are those who are pointing the same stick at the Seventh Day Adventists right now and calling you heretics. They are armed to the teeth with scripture to back it up, and they are claiming the inspiration of the Holy Spirit same as you.

      This has bothered me since early on in my walk with Christ. Why is it like this? Why are Christians so divided when we all have the same Word and the same Spirit? And why the heck are there incessant heresy bombs flying back and forth? I understand the need to protect against heresy, but how can anyone ever come to the right conclusion on a contested doctrinal point when two well meaning Jesus lovers can look at the same scripture, interpret it differently, and each call the other a heretic?

      For a long time this forced me into the “man, why can’t we all just get along?” camp. To a certain extent I am still there, and I certainly see the need for ecumenism. However, more and more I am seeing the need for the tradition of the Church. We need the teaching that accompanies the Word and the Spirit, handed down through the centuries from the early fathers, and the authority which holds the family together. The problem is that while the Word of God is infallible and inspired, we individually are not infallibly inspired. Thus when we interpret Holy scripture we sometimes come to wrongheaded conclusions.

      It simply makes more sense that the Spirit would guide a family of believers, His Church, collectively into truth, rather than counting on each individual (even with the Spirit) to perfectly interpret on their own apart from sound teaching and authority. I think most protestants see the need for sound teaching and authority, but we have so drastically minimized it next to the tower of sola scriptura that it has ceased to have the meaning that is required.

      Where is the authority? The Father, Son, and Spirit are THE authority absolutely, but people need a visible, physical authority to follow or else we tend to go our own way. Furthermore, God has always worked with His people through visible authorities. In every aspect of our lives God has given us visible authorities to submit to as we would submit to Christ, and sometimes called us individually to be authorities where we are instructed to serve as Christ served. Christ would hardly refuse to give us a visible authority where we most need it: in the proper interpretation of His Word and the living out the life of discipleship to which we have been commanded. Scripture alone cannot be that visible authority, and no Christian body other than the Catholic Church can legitimately lay claim to an authority that descends from the apostles and thus from Christ himself. Many of my fellow protestants hold the opinion that the Catholic papal authority obscures or lessens Christ in the eyes of believers, but I say that no one confuses the vicar for the King, or in American terms, the Secretary of State and our ambassadors for the President. Still, when dealing with foreign nations the Secretary of State speaks for the President with his authority and as though he were present in person. Perhaps that is an inadequate analogy, but I think it gets the point across. The King, Christ, holds the authority, the keys to the kingdom, and He can bestow it where it pleases Him and serves His people.

      This is why I, a bible loving protestant, find myself ready to go to the Catholic Church. The Word itself has led me to the Church. Christ’s own prayer for us in John 17, the scripture that led me to a life in Christ from the death I used to be cloaked in, has always remained embedded in my heart. For those who call on His name to be one as He and the Father are one.

      Peace in Christ be with you.
      Chris.

      • Curtis Fleming says:

        Hi Chris,

        It was nice to read about your journey and experience, however I disagree with ecumenism. I would suggest you visit a local Seventh-day Adventist church and you might be quite surprised to learn they are lovely and beautiful bible centred Christian people — almost as lovely as Catholics.

        I strongly believe we need unity in faith, however, compromising on what the scriptures say, is entirely something else. For example, you invite me to come and join your local Catholic church fellowship and eventually become a member. It will take about 6 months to do all the sacrements etc, but once I take the oath and complete the sacrements, I’ll be Catholic. This means I would have to compromise on what the bible commands us to do regarding keeping holy the 7th day sabbath; instead of what the bible says regarding when one dies that their thoughts perish and soul ceases to exist and remain dead until the 2nd coming, I would believe one goes straight to heaven, hell or purgatory (which isn’t in the bible); instead of consensual adult baptism by immersion, sprinkle baptism of babies etc, you get my point. One biblical example I will use is found after the fall, when God specified the sacrifice of an unblemished animal for the forgiveness of sin. Abel was a shepherd and sacrificed a lamb and was proved acceptable by God, while Cain offered vegetables and was not approved by God. We know what the rest of the story is, however the point is this, God is specific about what He asks from us and He doesn’t change.

        On your point about individual interpretation, I believe scripture is best to interpret itself. For example, the cryptic symbolism used in the bible all have keys found in the bible to understand what those symbols mean. We understand when the scripture referring to prophecy mentions ‘the woman’, we generally understand this to indicate ‘the church’. Water = peoples or nations etc. Another common key to interpreting scriptural prophecy is using the day as in a thousand years principle, again unlocked using the scriptures.

        Regarding the authority, yes, sola scriptura is good enough for me. I also believe God uses prophets, which I believe Ellen G. White to have been. Comparing the scriptures to what a so called prophet says is a good test of genuineness. If you read ‘The Great Controversy’ or ‘The Desire of Ages’ or any of Ellen Whites writings, you will understand that she uplifted Christ and draws readers to the scriptures. I strongly encourage reading of ‘The Great Controversy’ as this explains the spiritual war between Christ and Satan and how it has been played out through history including using Roman Catholicism.

        We can if you like discuss the Papal succession from Peter if you wish, however, Matthew 16:18 is not the kind of solid rock you’re looking for in answering it I’m afraid. Do ask anyway Chris.

        Thanks for your discussion, I hope you find my response thoughtful and appreciated.

        God bless,

        Curtis

      • Chris Byrum says:

        Hey Curtis,

        I do think your response is thoughtful and respectful, and while you disagree you are obviously trying very hard to maintain a loving tone which is very much appreciated. I also have no doubt that a great many Seventh Day Adventists are lovely people, and indeed people that love the bible.

        I did want to say that I was not inviting you to the Catholic Church, in case there was a misunderstanding, as I am not a Catholic myself at this point so it would be out of place for me to do so. I am in a place of finding myself convinced and yet I am taking a period of time for prayer, reflection, scriptural study, reading, and listening to brothers in the faith (both protestant and Catholic) that are mature and knowledgeable men. If after that time I remain convinced that the Catholic Church is the visible authority intended by Christ to feed and care for His people, then I will begin the process of becoming Catholic.

        I think our primary disagreement is how you determine that the scriptural interpretation to which you are holding fast represents a greater fullness of and faithfulness to the teachings of Christ. You refer to the “keys” by which scripture interprets itself, and yet those keys themselves came through human interpretation. You may feel that those keys were given to man through the infallible guidance of the Holy Spirit, you may feel that Ellen G. White’s prophecies were the product of the Holy Spirit working through her, and yet other protestants disagree with you. I’m not talking about Catholics, but rather other protestants who believe firmly in sola scriptura, and who have evaluated Seventh Day Adventist teachings and deemed them heretical after testing them against scripture as you have invited me to do.

        My primary question remains. Why should someone trust the prophesies of Ellen G. White and the doctrines of the Seventh Day Adventist church? I believe you that you test them against scripture, and I also believe you that you are convinced that they reflect scripture faithfully. I also know protestants who just as firmly believe their doctrines are Spirit given, biblically based and testable, and yet their doctrines are not compatible with those of your church. Furthermore, I myself have read a lot of scripture, prayed, and tested teachings against scripture and have often found myself disagreeing with various doctrinal positions of different protestant churches. I have often wondered which protestant denomination was actually most faithful to the true teachings of Christ.

        I agree with you that the truth given us by Christ cannot be compromised (not for ecumenism or any other purpose). You feel that the truth of Christ is most faithfully represented and taught by the Seventh Day Adventist church and I disagree with you. Both of us love the bible, read it, and view it as inerrant truth, but I don’t see the reason to accept the doctrines of your church, and I do see many reasons (both biblical and otherwise) to accept the doctrines and authority of the Catholic church. Furthermore, I don’t see another legitimate claim to that authority. Either it rests with the Catholic church or God has chosen to leave us without a visible authority.

        I’ll sign off and give you the last word my friend. Thank you again for your respectful tone, I hope that you have felt that I have likewise respected you, and may God bless you in your walk.

        Chris.

      • Curtis Fleming says:

        Hi Chris,

        Thanks for making that point clear about your protestantism, however, I would not call you protestant as the very essence of protestant means to protest against the unscriptural teachings and man made traditions of the Catholic church.

        Your question: “Why should someone trust the prophesies of Ellen G. White and the doctrines of the Seventh Day Adventist church? I believe you that you test them against scripture, and I also believe you that you are convinced that they reflect scripture faithfully. I also know protestants who just as firmly believe their doctrines are Spirit given, biblically based and testable, and yet their doctrines are not compatible with those of your church. Furthermore, I myself have read a lot of scripture, prayed, and tested teachings against scripture and have often found myself disagreeing with various doctrinal positions of different protestant churches. I have often wondered which protestant denomination was actually most faithful to the true teachings of Christ.”

        Indeed, Ellen G. Whites writings are in harmony with the scriptures, otherwise I would disregard her altogether. I would once again plead with you to consider reading even “The Great Controversy” and I guarantee that you will be impressed with how well it takes you through history to open our eyes to the very real war between Christ and Satan.

        Regarding which protestant faith being most close to the original pure Christian church? I believe this church will be proclaiming the 3 messages from Revelation 14:6-12 as this message is for the times we are living in today, right before the second coming of Jesus. Matthew 24 suggests we are in the last days, this passage is coming to fulfilment exactly how it was written! Looking at the first part of Rev 14:6, Gods true church preaches the gospel (Ephesians 2:8; 1 John 1:7 & John 1:12 for example). Rev 14:6 the last part suggests this church is a global, world wide church (Matthew 28:19, 20 & Mark 16:15). Notice the first part of Rev 14:7, it suggests that Gods people would give Him glory in their lifestyle (1 Cor 6:19, 20 & 10:31). Middle part of Rev 14:7 says His church will announce the hour of Gods judgement has come (Matt 12:33, 37; Acts 24:25; Daniel 7:9-14). The last part of Rev 14:7 declares that Gods church will call all people to worship the Creator. If we read Rev 4:11 we understand that the point worship is the fact that God made us. We learn in Exodus 20:8-11 the symbol of creation is the sabbath and in Gen 2:1-3 we are to return to Gods original plan in commandment keeping. Rev 14:12 – Gods church will have the faith of jesus and be obedient to His law. Rev 14:8 – this church warns against false doctrines of spiritual Babylon. Rev 14:9-11 – It teaches the truth about death (John 11:11-14; Eccl 9:5; Psalms 146:3, 4). John 10:16 – Jesus calls all to come follow Him in truth. Rev 22:17.

        The only visible authority I need is the scriptures.

        I want to just speak plainly for a moment. I believe many sincere Christ-centered people read these scriptures and choose to disregard what it’s really saying. They may be part of a very loving and beautiful church family and all their friends and family are in the same church. They read a scripture that’s as clear as day such as “Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work: But the seventh day is the sabbath of the LORD thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates: For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the LORD blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it.” (Exodus 20:8-11), yet they say “it’s not applicable to me”. They most assuredly would accept the other 9 commandments right?

        Just one last point I want to make clear. The scriptures warn us against adding or taking away from the scriptures. “For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book: And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.” (Rev 22:18, 19). Saying the 4th commandment doesn’t apply is the same as taking away what the bible is saying. I used the sabbath only as an example, it can be easily explained using all scripture yet those who don’t want to accept it, wont accept it still unless they plead for the Holy Spirits guiding.

        God bless you my friend,

        I hope you read “the great controversy”

        Curtis

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