I’m very proud to be an Adventist.
This afternoon a few of us were having a general convo and the topic of cult came up and I said something to that effect. A friend of mine said, well many people believe that SDAs are cult too. Well I have heard that a lot. I mean A LOT. But most people blindly recite what some idiot puts on the google and not look up what that word means or why or why not SDA is a cult. My family said it, my friends said, everybody who can google, said it. That doesn’t make Adventists a cult. In fact, it’s the opposite. We try our best to walk with the Lord as He commanded. And I challenge anyone to explain and prove to me why Adventists are cult. My family has been Lutherans for 400 plus years and it took me only 3 days to become an Adventist. Let me explain.
If you haven’t already realized it I’m stating it here again: I’m a very well read and educated woman, not only in degrees but because I’m passionate about reading anything, like a piece of paper I would find on the side of the road, and I read thousands of books. If something has writing on it, I’d read it. There were times, when I chased some people down just so I can read what it said on their t-shirts.
I didn’t become a Christian by default by being born into it. I was a Lutheran because I was born into it. Me being a Christian, is because of me searching for True God and Him sharing His light with me and allowing Himself to be found by me. I read various other religious books including Hinduism, Buddhism and Quran. I was raised in India where you find a god at every corner.
While reading Bible, I had questions. Always questions. You know, because they don’t fit with what you were practicing as a Christian. I checked with pastors whom I have met and their answers were illogical and sometimes embodied stupidity and I wasn’t even a grown up yet and my understanding of words is still limited but I knew they were faking Christianity. I was a very sharp student and actually, my legal age is more than my actual age because I have to be 15 to complete my high school & I was only 8 on account I was super smart and I jumped some standards. So my mum, she was my school principle, adjusted my age so I could graduate. But now I’m like can I please go back to my own age 🙂
Anyway, one of my cousins married an Adventist, but my parents never discussed about this. And I thought Adventists are like any other protestant denomination. When I was at uni. one of my philosophy prof talked to me about “Desire of Ages” by Mrs. White and specifically asked me if I read it as we always had these tremendous philosophical discussions and he asked me because I’m a Christian (he was a Hindu) and that I should read it as he was impressed and influenced by that book and I remember noting that book’s title and the author’s name at the back of my notebook. I never read it tho. I read it for the first time in 2014 and I became a SDA in 1998..
God chased me to become a SDA. I kid you not. It took me 3 years to find myself at the right place and it took God 3 evangelical seminars to convince me to become a SDA. When I was in Philly after finishing my masters, my aunt whom I have never met, asked me if I would go to these Revelation seminars and I honestly love the book of Revelation as much as the book of Daniel and I was like yes. My cousins I was temporarily residing with (as I was unmarried at that time) dissuaded me saying that Adventists are cult. I told them, let me go just for one meeting because I should keep my word.
That was my past. I was captivated by the message and I returned day after day. By the end of day 1, I knew I have to become SDA. I was tortured by the decision because I don’t want to hurt my parents by becoming SDA and I didn’t tell them when I got baptized and my parents didn’t talk to me for a whole of 6 months. I told them repeatedly that I have to be loyal to God and not to my parents or to the “parent church” and that I’m not being disrespectful to them. My dad was like why can’t you keep Sabbath and come to church on Sundays as well. I can write papers why I shouldn’t do that.
The first reason why I’m thankful that I’m a Seventh-day Adventist is because of the gospel. The essence of all true Seventh-day Adventist preaching is found in the everlasting gospel as expressed in Revelation 14:6 “…those who keep the commandments of God and the faith of Jesus”. It is the same gospel that Jesus said would be preached in all the world (Matthew 24:14). This is the heartbeat of the Bible and this is what Adventism is all about. To be faithful to God no matter what. All other teachings and doctrines must be related and are related to this one great truth.
The second reason why I’m thankful to be an Adventist is because of the view point about annihilation of the dead. Almost all Christians, except for Adventists, believe that our loving God would punish the sinners by burning them in fire for ETERNITY. Really ? why would I love such a God who relishes in the torment of the sinners ? But thank God they are wrong. God is loving, He is caring and He grieves for the lost souls. To quote Clifford Goldstein, “It is astonishing to read some very bright Christians try to justify the idea that the unsaved deserve to be suffering torture in hell for billions of eons, and that such a fate is exactly what a loving God would do” (Clifford Goldstein was a jewish atheist now a SDA and I equate him to Paul and I love his writings because he is brilliant). I didn’t believe this when I was a child and a non-adventist because my core being wouldn’t let me believe that this God whom I love and worship would be this cruel to His creation for which He died. It’s illogical. I’m ever so grateful to be an Adventist with our understanding of the fate of the lost which establishes my understanding of a loving God.
The third reason why I’m thankful to be an Adventist is because of Sabbath. Blessed, blessed Sabbath. Time to be with God and to commune with Him and bring Him nothing but my gratefulness and my adoration for all blessings He poured out on me.
It amazes me that so many other Christian denominations go on record as upholding the Ten Commandments yet do not honour God’s Sabbath, the seventh day. This was another question I struggled with as a child you know the confusing part where you know Sabbath is Saturday and yet you go to church on Sunday. On whose authority are you keeping Sunday holy ? Please read Samuel Bacchiocchi book “From Sabbath to Sunday” if you have any questions on my intelligence.
Sabbath is a reminder who our Creator is. It is a scientific fact that when we rest body, and soul, we are healthier and by observing Sabbath we are linking our rest in Christ and it provides a weekly rejuvenation of physical, mental and spiritual health and wellbeing.
I’m also thankful for the health message and the holistic lifestyle my church promotes. Countless surveys proved that Adventists’ lifestyle is the best. Adventist church advocates health principles not as a mandatory rule but because Jesus said that our bodies are temple for the Holy Spirit and because God cares for our wellbeing.
Doctors now a days suggest, not eating fat, grease, sugar, red meat, eating more fruits, vegetable, grains; not drinking, not smoking; getting sleep and exercising. And these were documented by Mrs. White in “counsels on Diets and Foods” in early 1900s and Adventists have been doing this since 150 years !
There are many other reasons why I’m an Adventist. Relationship with Christ is work in progress. I’m a work in progress. And Christ convicts us of His truth and He brings us into His remnant. I’m not saying my church if perfect or that all the Adventists are perfect. But my church principles have foundation on Christ alone and on Bible. I’m not judging others who are not Adventists and who believe differently. And I’m certainly not forcing anyone to become Adventists. What I’m trying to say is that I’m thankful for the things God revealed to us (Adventists) and for convicting me to see the truth and nothing but His truth and giving me courage to follow Him. Evidently, I have no choice as He purchased me by shedding His blood and I’m His property and He bound me to Himself with His love.