Frequently Asked Questions
1. Aren’t Seventh-day Adventists just like other Christians?
No. Seventh-day Adventists have several “distinctive doctrines” that they claim make them unique among all other churches.
2. What are the teachings that are unique to Seventh-day Adventists?
A. The doctrine that Ellen G. White’s writings are as inspired as the Bible.
B. The doctrine, based on Ellen G. White’s writings, that a believer will be judged by his or her works and this judgment of works determines one’s salvation. This is called the “Investigative Judgment” or the “Pre-Advent Judgment”. Ellen G. White’s book, the Great Controversy, teaches this doctrine in chapters 24 and 28.
C. The doctrine that in the last days, just before Jesus returns, only those worshipping on Saturday will be saved. They particularly believe that worshipping on Sunday will be the mark of the beast.
D. That Sabbath keeping is the “seal of God”, even though the Bible says that the Holy Spirit indwelling a believer is God’s seal (Eph. 1:13-14; 4:30; 2 Cor. 1:22).
E. That the Seventh-day Adventist Church is the only true church of God on earth. Any other churches are apostate and referred to as “Babylon”, or “Apostate Protestants.”
F. When a Christian dies they cease to exist. Adventists, in common with Jehovah’s Witnesses, teach that a Christian does not go to be with the Lord at death. Adventists teach that the soul ceases to exist and must be recreated by God at the resurrection. Hence, the believer is separated from God by death, contrary to what Romans 8:38-39 and 2 Cor. 5:8 says.
G. Seventh-day Adventists do not believe in the eternal punishment of the devil and his angels or of the wicked. They believe that the penalty for sinning against a holy God is merely annihilation.
H. Seventh-day Adventists teach that the atonement was not completed at the cross, but is still in the process of being completed. This is part of their Investigative Judgment teaching.
3. Don’t Seventh-day Adventists teach salvation by grace through faith?
Yes they do, but they also teach that a person’s ultimate salvation will be determined by the outcome of the Investigative Judgment. This doctrine, never taught before in the history of the church, teaches that beginning on October 22, 1844 an Investigative Judgment of all believer’s lives began. During this judgment, Adventists teach, believer’s names come up before God. If a believer has sinned that sin is marked down by a recording angel in heaven. That sin goes against the believer in the judgment. If a believer confesses that sin, “pardon” is written against that sin, but the sin remains on the books of record. Every single sin must be confessed to have “pardon” written by it. When a believer’s name comes up in this Investigative Judgment, God will weigh the good works against the sins. A believer never knows when God may come to his name in this judgment. When God looks at the believer’s life, Adventist’s teach, if those sins that were confessed and had been “pardoned” were not perfectly overcome, they will go against the believer. Bottom line, an Adventist must perfectly overcome their sin in order to stand before God. They are taught by their prophetess that they must stand before a holy God without Jesus as their mediator. Their prophetess Ellen G. White says, “Those who are living upon the earth when the intercession of Christ shall cease in the sanctuary above are to stand in the sight of a holy God without a mediator” (The Great Controversy, p. 425). Needless to say, all of this contradicts the New Testament gospel of grace. The Bible teaches that believers never will enter a judgment for their salvation (John 5:24) and that there is no condemnation for a believer (Romans 8:1). The Bible teaches that when we confess our sins, they do not remain anywhere before God, they are forgiven and blotted out, wiped away! (See 1 John 1:8-9; Isaiah 43:25 and 44:22). The Bible teaches that Jesus will never stop being a believer’s mediator (Hebrews 7:25).
We stand before God, not by any merit of our own or because of any works we have done (Titus 3:5, Romans 3:28, Ephesians 2:8-9).
4. Don’t Adventists believe they are God’s “remnant” people?
Yes. Seventh-day Adventists believe they are the only true church on earth. At their world wide General Conference in 2000 they passed a resolution affirming this belief. This is very important for them to believe. They refer to other Christians as either “apostate Protestant”, “Babylon”, “Sunday keepers”, or as sheep that have not yet come into the fold. They believe everyone who will be saved in the final days before Jesus returns will be a Seventh-day Adventist.
5. Do Adventists believe in the Trinity?
Yes. Seventh-day Adventists believe in the Trinity, though some of the pioneers of the Adventist church did not. James White (husband of their prophetess Ellen G. White) and Uriah Smith, author of “Bible Readings For The Home,” “Daniel and The Revelation,” books Adventists still circulate today, both shared the same Arian beliefs. They did not believe that Jesus was God.
6. Do Seventh-day Adventists teach Jesus is Michael the Archangel?
Yes, Seventh-day Adventists share this belief with Jehovah’s Witnesses. Adventists are very firm in their belief that Jesus is Michael the Archangel. They must take this position because this is what their prophetess, Ellen G. White taught. They also believe that Jesus is God. There is a glaring contradiction here. Hebrews 1:13-14 says that Jesus is not an angel.
7. Don’t Seventh-day Adventists live a very healthy lifestyle?
Yes and no. Officially the church encourages its members to be vegetarians because this is what Ellen G. White teaches. Most Adventists are not vegetarian. Many of those who are vegetarian eat diets that are high in fats, such as cheese and eggs.
Adventist do not eat the, “unclean” foods mentioned in the Bible, though in the New Testament Jesus and Paul declare all foods “clean” (Luke 11:41, Mark 7:19, Titus 1:15, Romans 14:14, 1 Tim. 4:3-5).
8. Haven’t Adventists made a lot of changes in the past 15 years?
Adventists have made only cosmetic changes. Their core doctrines have not changed at all. They still preach at their evangelistic meetings that all other churches are wrong and are apostate Protestants or Catholics. They still believe Ellen G. White’s writings are as inspired as the Bible and they still believe and teach all their “distinctive” doctrines mentioned in question two.
Seventh-day Adventists desperately want to look like, sound like and be accepted like evangelical Christians. The problem is they don’t believe like evangelical, Bible believing Christians.
Adventists want to be accepted as evangelicals so that they can proselytize other Christians. If Adventists held a large evangelistic crusade in a city and had thousands of converts they would never funnel any of them to a Baptist, Presbyterian, Lutheran or non-denominational church. That would be unthinkable to them.
Click here to read comments by former SDA Church President clearly addressing this issue. He declares the church has not changed and will not change.
9. Are there true Christians in the Seventh-day Adventist church?
Obviously only God knows the state of a heart. There are some Adventists waking up to the fact that their church contradicts the Bible and they have doctrines, like the Investigative Judgment, that are incompatible with the New Testament teaching of salvation by grace through faith.
There are many Seventh-day Adventist pastors who have left the church because they have discovered the false doctrines and the errors of the Adventist prophetess, Ellen G. White. They need our prayers. Many of them are very gifted teachers, preachers and evangelists.
10. What do we think about Seventh-day Adventists?
We at ex-Adventist Outreach love the Seventh-day Adventist people. We desire to see them all come to a saving knowledge of God’s grace in Jesus Christ.
11. Do Adventists add anything to the Bible?
Seventh-day Adventists will say emphatically that they believe the Bible alone. That, however, must be interpreted to mean that they believe the Bible alone and in Ellen G. White, whom they believe is God’s last day prophetess. They believe that her writings are as inspired as the Bible and Adventist interpretations of Scripture will never contradict Ellen G. White’s interpretations.
Official Adventist statements of belief say that they believe the Bible alone. Then in another section they say that the writings of Ellen G. White are a continuing source of authority in the church. Adventists have now published more books of Ellen White’s writings than there are books of the Bible. Many Adventists devoted to Ellen G. White read more of her writings than they read the Bible. Ellen G. White’s writings are quoted authoritatively by Adventist pastors in most of their sermons. They will refer to her as “The Pen of Inspiration”, “God’s Servant”, “The Messenger of the Lord”, “Inspiration”, “Sister White” or simply as “Ellen White”. When they do not refer to her writings in this way they will simply say the name of the book they are quoting from and give the reference. It is not uncommon for an Ellen G. White quotation to be memorized and quoted like a Bible verse. Many times those kinds of quotations are used as the final argument in Sabbath school class discussions.
See also: Alarming comments by former SDA Church President Jan Paulsen.
12. Do Adventists have their own translation of the Bible?
No, Adventists have historically used the King James Version of the Bible. Some of their doctrines are much harder to prove from more modern versions like the New American Standard Bible or the New International Version.
In 1994 the Seventh-day Adventists did publish an Adventist paraphrase of the Bible, “The Clear Word Bible”, done by Adventist pastor and scholar Jack J. Blanco. This paraphrase has made huge changes to the Word of God. Large portions of Scripture have been altered to support Adventist distinctive doctrines. Passages of Scripture that refute Adventist false teaching have been “edited” so that they are rendered ineffective. This paraphrase is much worse of an attack on the Bible than the Jehovah’s Witnesses New World Translation or Joseph Smith’s (Mormon) “Inspired Translation of the King James Version”.
Click here to read article on the Clear Word Bible.
13. Why do Seventh-day Adventists make such a big deal about going to church on
Seventh-day Adventists, like Jews, observe Saturday as the Sabbath. They do not understand that we Christians are under a New Covenant with New Covenant signs.
The Old Covenant, the Ten Commandments (Deut. 4:13, Deut. 9:9,11,15; 10:4, 1 Kings 8:9,21), had the sign of Sabbath keeping. God predicted that He would change this covenant (Jeremiah 31:31). Christians are under a New Covenant. The New Covenant signs that we are to observe are baptism (Col. 2:11-12) and the Lord’s supper (Luke 22:19-20).
The Apostle Paul teaches that we are now under a New Covenant and under “the law of the Spirit of life that is in Christ Jesus” (Rom. 8:2). Our “Law” is the teachings of the New Testament. (Gal. 6:2)
For further study we recommend our Bible study, “The Gospel & The Covenants”, these tapes have been used by the Lord to set thousands of Adventists free around the world.
14. Why don’t Adventists clearly identify themselves when they have “Prophecy
Seminars” or health classes?
One can only suppose the Adventist leaders know the poor reputation they have in the Christian community doctrinally.
When Adventists hold their meetings, aimed primarily at taking members from other churches, they generally do not identify who they are. The following is a list of a few Adventist organizations or organizations with very similar beliefs (similar to an Adventist “para-church” organization if there was such a thing):
- “It Is Written” television programs and seminars
- “The Voice of Prophecy” radio programs and seminars
- “The 5-day Plan to Stop Smoking”
- “Revelation Seminars”
- 3ABN TV Network
- Many “Health Seminars” or “Vegetarian Cooking” classes held at Adventist schools or local churches
- Adventist hospitals, health centers, clinics, and nursing homes
- SDA parochial day schools, boarding schools, high schools- also called “Academies” and colleges and universities
- Loma Linda University is their flagship medical center and world-class medical school
- Andrew’s University is their seminary in North America
- “Amazing Facts” radio broadcasts and literature
- “Amazing Facts” crusades
- “Light Bearers”
- Review & Herald Publishing
- Pacific Press Publishing
- Southern Publishing
Seventh-day Adventist magazines often used as Adventist proselytizing tools:
- Adventist Review
- The Signs of the Times
The magazine targeting Christian pastors and church leaders is "Ministry: International Journal for Pastors." It is sent free to thousands of pastors across the land. Your pastor probably receives it. The issue he receives is slick and looks evangelical, containing many useful articles. What your pastor probably doesn’t know is that between every issue he receives is an issue intended only for Adventist pastors. There they debate issues such as how to interpret Ellen G. White, her role and function in the church, the Sabbath, the Investigative Judgment and other Adventist “distinctives” or fundamental Seventh-day Adventist doctrines.
It’s safe to say that the goal of everything the Seventh-day Adventist church does is to advance Adventism around the world and to attempt to make you or your family Seventh-day Adventists.
15. Why do my Adventist relatives and friends get so defensive when I talk to them
about where I think they are doctrinally wrong?
Adventists are taught from childhood that they are God’s only true church on earth and that they are God’s remnant people. They are taught that they have the “truth” and all other Christians are wrong and are apostate. This causes them to have an attitude of spiritual arrogance and pride. They have a very difficult time receiving anything from a “Sunday Keeper”, as they refer to you. This spiritual pride and arrogance generally leads them to become defensive. Instead of listening to you they retreat into their doctrinal structure and hide. They are insecure in their beliefs and if you get them away from their proof-text method of presenting their doctrines they are lost.
They have been taught that someday those who worship on Sunday will persecute them, hunt them and even kill them. This doesn’t help.
Prayerfully begin to share the truth with them.
16. How do I share the truth with an Adventist?
Ask them questions.
- Lead them to verses in the New Testament they have never understood such as: Galatians 3-4, Colossians 2, Hebrews 8, and Romans 7.
- Ask them how Jesus can be God and be Michael the Archangel
- Ask them how the Sabbath can be the seal of a God when the Bible say the Holy Spirit is.
- Ask them how they could stand before God without a mediator when the Bible says Jesus always lives to make intercession for us (Heb. 7:25).
17. How can I help reach Seventh-day Adventists for Christ?
There are three things you can do:
- Pray for them. This is a spiritual battle. Ask the Lord to break down Satan’s strongholds and to open the eyes of Adventists around the world so that they can see the truths of the New Testament gospel of grace.
- Support ministries that reach out to SDA’s with your prayers and financial support. There are many ministries linked on the web that minister to SDA’s worldwide. Remember, the Seventh-day Adventist church is a multi-million dollar organization. With much prayer and fasting God can break through to these dear people and set them free.
- Tell other Christians what you’ve learned about Adventism. We must spread the truth about Seventh-day Adventism so that Christians are not deceived and Christian leaders around the world are made aware of these concerns.