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Discussion in 'Other Christian Denominations' started by John3v36, Dec 17, 2004.

  1. 7-Kids

    7-Kids New Member

    Jul 25, 2002
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    You though if off as nothing but no proof
  2. 7-Kids

    7-Kids New Member

    Jul 25, 2002
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    What about the quetion I had in "most Non-denom churches tend to follow baptist theology"

    If you are only going to anwser one that is the one I would like answered.
  3. mioque

    mioque New Member

    May 23, 2003
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    I have finally finished that last text you linked to.
    I want to compare some of it's claims to some texts in the local university library. Answer ready by sunday afternoon.
  4. Matt Black

    Matt Black Well-Known Member
    Site Supporter

    Feb 25, 2003
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    ...and plain wrong, since the Constantinian Settlement dates from 313 and the Waldenses from the 12th century...which still leaves a gap of at least eight centuries.

    Yours in Christ

  5. mioque

    mioque New Member

    May 23, 2003
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    Several examples of Waldensian religious texts have survived that predate the Reformation era. Among others a cathechism that dates to about 1489. I checked it this afternoon.
    In those texts there is nothing that looks like IFB theology on baptism.
    What is on the official record is that in 1179 (during the 3rd Latheran council) the Waldenses tried to become an officially recognized movement within the RCC and succeeded...
    They did not however receive the right to preach. So when they rebelled against that, they got kicked out again in 1184.

    That study you linked to is yet another classical example of churchpolitics masquerading as churchhistory.
    The larger problem here is that in the eyes of many american baptists it's cool to belong to a denomination that extends all the way back to the dawn of Christendom in a straight line not marred by any association by folks they perceive as heretics of the worst kind. If history doesn't back that fancy, well let's just make up some history to match.

    If you want to read a good book about the Waldenses, read the following.
  6. Matt Black

    Matt Black Well-Known Member
    Site Supporter

    Feb 25, 2003
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    If you want Apostolic Succession, then be a Catholic or Orthodox. Otherwise, accept the fact that Baptists sprung from the more separatist branch of the Anglican Church, and live with it

    Yours in Christ

  7. John3v36

    John3v36 New Member

    Jul 18, 2002
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  8. Matt Black

    Matt Black Well-Known Member
    Site Supporter

    Feb 25, 2003
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    Interesting article. I do not deny that the Waldenses may be rightfully considered 'proto-evangelical' (as opposed to earlier groups in the 'Landmark' succession, which are far more uniquivocally gnostic or otherwise heretical), but 'proto-Baptist' is perhaps stretching the matter; the article itself accepts an ambiguity amongst the sect as to the sacramental (or otherwise) nature of baptism which renders it equivocal on the issue of baptismal regeneration (even the Catholic Church allows for a 'baptism of desire' as salvific if there is no opportunity to perform the rite eg: the thief on the cross). Also, no evidence is offered for their continuity going back to Constantine.

    Yours in Christ

  9. Claudia_T

    Claudia_T New Member

    May 11, 2004
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    Here's an article about the history of the Waldenses for anyone who doesnt know much about them. That would be good if the Baptists were descendants of the Waldenses, something to be proud of. But it would be even better if they kept the Seventh Day Sabbath as did the Waldenses, who stood up for the truth:

    Amid the gloom that settled upon the earth during the long period of papal supremacy, the light of truth could not be wholly extinguished. In every age there were witnesses for God--men who cherished faith in Christ as the only mediator between God and man, who held the Bible as the only rule of life, and who hallowed the true Sabbath. How much the world owes to these men, posterity will never know. They were branded as heretics, their motives impugned, their characters maligned, their writings suppressed, misrepresented, or mutilated. Yet they stood firm, and from age to age maintained their faith in its purity, as a sacred heritage for the generations to come.

    The history of God's people during the ages of darkness that followed upon Rome's supremacy is written in heaven, but they have little place in human records. Few traces of their existence can be found, except in the accusations of their persecutors. It was the policy of Rome to obliterate every trace of dissent from her doctrines or decrees. Everything heretical, whether persons or writings, she sought to destroy. Expressions of doubt, or questions as to the authority of papal dogmas, were enough to forfeit the life of rich or poor, high or low. Rome endeavored also to destroy every record of her cruelty toward dissenters. Papal councils decreed that books and writings containing such records should be committed to the flames. Before the invention of printing, books were few in number, and in a form not favorable for preservation; therefore there was little to prevent the Romanists from carrying out their purpose.

    No church within the limits of Romish jurisdiction was long left undisturbed in the enjoyment of freedom of conscience. No sooner had the papacy obtained power than she stretched out her arms to crush all that refused to acknowledge her sway, and one after another the churches submitted to her dominion.

    In Great Britain primitive Christianity had very early taken root. The gospel received by the Britons in the first centuries was then uncorrupted by Romish apostasy. Persecution from pagan emperors, which extended even to these far-off shores, was the only gift that the first churches of Britain received from Rome. Many of the Christians, fleeing from persecution in England, found refuge in Scotland; thence the truth was carried to Ireland, and in all these countries it was received with gladness.

    When the Saxons invaded Britain, heathenism gained control. The conquerors disdained to be instructed by their slaves, and the Christians were forced to retreat to the mountains and the wild moors. Yet the light, hidden for a time, continued to burn. In Scotland, a century later, it shone out with a brightness that extended to far-distant lands. From Ireland came the pious Columba and his colaborers, who, gathering about them the scattered believers on the lonely island of Iona, made this the center of their missionary labors. Among these evangelists was an observer of the Bible Sabbath, and thus this truth was introduced among the people. A school was established at Iona, from which missionaries went out, not only to Scotland and England, but to Germany, Switzerland, and even Italy.

    But Rome had fixed her eyes on Britain, and resolved to bring it under her supremacy. In the sixth century her missionaries undertook the conversion of the heathen Saxons.

    They were received with favor by the proud barbarians, and they induced many thousands to profess the Romish faith. As the work progressed, the papal leaders and their converts encountered the primitive Christians. A striking contrast was presented. The latter were simple, humble, and Scriptural in character, doctrine, and manners, while the former manifested the superstition, pomp, and arrogance of popery. The emissary of Rome demanded that these Christian churches acknowledge the supremacy of the sovereign pontiff. The Britons meekly replied that they desired to love all men, but that the pope was not entitled to supremacy in the church, and they could render to him only that submission which was due to every follower of Christ. Repeated attempts were made to secure their allegiance to Rome; but these humble Christians, amazed at the pride displayed by her emissaries, steadfastly replied that they knew no other master than Christ. Now the true spirit of the papacy was revealed. Said the Romish leader: "If you will not receive brethren who bring you peace, you shall receive enemies who will bring you war. If you will not unite with us in showing the Saxons the way of life, you shall receive from them the stroke of death."--J. H. Merle D'Aubigne, History of the Reformation of the Sixteenth Century, b. 17, ch. 2. These were no idle threats. War, intrigue, and deception were employed against these witnesses for a Bible faith, until the churches of Britain were destroyed, or forced to submit to the authority of the pope.

    In lands beyond the jurisdiction of Rome there existed for many centuries bodies of Christians who remained almost wholly free from papal corruption. They were surrounded by heathenism and in the lapse of ages were affected by its errors; but they continued to regard the Bible as the only rule of faith and adhered to many of its truths. These Christians believed in the perpetuity of the law of God and observed the Sabbath of the fourth commandment. Churches that held to this faith and practice existed in Central Africa and among the Armenians of Asia.

    But of those who resisted the encroachments of the papal power, the Waldenses stood foremost. In the very land where popery had fixed its seat, there its falsehood and corruption were most steadfastly resisted. For centuries the churches of Piedmont maintained their independence; but the time came at last when Rome insisted upon their submission. After ineffectual struggles against her tyranny, the leaders of these churches reluctantly acknowledged the supremacy of the power to which the whole world seemed to pay homage. There were some, however, who refused to yield to the authority of pope or prelate. They were determined to maintain their allegiance to God and to preserve the purity and simplicity of their faith. A separation took place. Those who adhered to the ancient faith now withdrew; some, forsaking their native Alps, raised the banner of truth in foreign lands; others retreated to the secluded glens and rocky fastnesses of the mountains, and there preserved their freedom to worship God.

    The faith which for centuries was held and taught by the Waldensian Christians was in marked contrast to the false doctrines put forth from Rome. Their religious belief was founded upon the written word of God, the true system of Christianity. But those humble peasants, in their obscure retreats, shut away from the world, and bound to daily toil among their flocks and their vineyards, had not by themselves arrived at the truth in opposition to the dogmas and heresies of the apostate church. Theirs was not a faith newly received. Their religious belief was their inheritance from their fathers. They contended for the faith of the apostolic church,--"the faith which was once delivered unto the saints." Jude 3. "The church in the wilderness," and not the proud hierarchy enthroned in the world's great capital, was the true church of Christ, the guardian of the treasures of truth which God has committed to His people to be given to the world.

    Among the leading causes that had led to the separation of the true church from Rome was the hatred of the latter toward the Bible Sabbath. As foretold by prophecy, the papal power cast down the truth to the ground. The law of God was trampled in the dust, while the traditions and customs of men were exalted. The churches that were under the rule of the papacy were early compelled to honor the Sunday as a holy day. Amid the prevailing error and superstition, many, even of the true people of God, became so bewildered that while they observed the Sabbath, they refrained from labor also on the Sunday. But this did not satisfy the papal leaders. They demanded not only that Sunday be hallowed, but that the Sabbath be profaned; and they denounced in the strongest language those who dared to show it honor. It was only by fleeing from the power of Rome that any could obey God's law in peace. (See Appendix.)

    The Waldenses were among the first of the peoples of Europe to obtain a translation of the Holy Scriptures. (See Appendix.) Hundreds of years before the Reformation they possessed the Bible in manuscript in their native tongue. They had the truth unadulterated, and this rendered them the special objects of hatred and persecution. They declared the Church of Rome to be the apostate Babylon of the Apocalypse, and at the peril of their lives they stood up to resist her corruptions. While, under the pressure of long-continued persecution, some compromised their faith, little by little yielding its distinctive principles, others held fast the truth. Through ages of darkness and apostasy there were Waldenses who denied the supremacy of Rome, who rejected image worship as idolatry, and who kept the true Sabbath. Under the fiercest tempests of opposition they maintained their faith. Though gashed by the Savoyard spear, and scorched by the Romish fagot, they stood unflinchingly for God's word and His honor.

    Behind the lofty bulwarks of the mountains--in all ages the refuge of the persecuted and oppressed--the Waldenses found a hiding place. Here the light of truth was kept burning amid the darkness of the Middle Ages. Here, for a thousand years, witnesses for the truth maintained the ancient faith.

    God had provided for His people a sanctuary of awful grandeur, befitting the mighty truths committed to their trust. To those faithful exiles the mountains were an emblem of the immutable righteousness of Jehovah. They pointed their children to the heights towering above them in unchanging majesty, and spoke to them of Him with whom there is no variableness nor shadow of turning, whose word is as enduring as the everlasting hills. God had set fast the mountains and girded them with strength; no arm but that of Infinite Power could move them out of their place. In like manner He had established His law, the foundation of His government in heaven and upon earth. The arm of man might reach his fellow men and destroy their lives; but that arm could as readily uproot the mountains from their foundations, and hurl them into the sea, as it could change one precept of the law of Jehovah, or blot out one of His promises to those who do His will. In their fidelity to His law, God's servants should be as firm as the unchanging hills.

    The mountains that girded their lowly valleys were a constant witness to God's creative power, and a never-failing assurance of His protecting care. Those pilgrims learned to love the silent symbols of Jehovah's presence. They indulged no repining because of the hardships of their lot; they were never lonely amid the mountain solitudes. They thanked God that He had provided for them an asylum from the wrath and cruelty of men. They rejoiced in their freedom to worship before Him. Often when pursued by their enemies, the strength of the hills proved a sure defense. From many a lofty cliff they chanted the praise of God, and the armies of Rome could not silence their songs of thanksgiving.

    Pure, simple, and fervent was the piety of these followers of Christ. The principles of truth they valued above houses and lands, friends, kindred, even life itself. These principles they earnestly sought to impress upon the hearts of the young. From earliest childhood the youth were instructed in the Scriptures and taught to regard sacredly the claims of the law of God. Copies of the Bible were rare; therefore its precious words were committed to memory. Many were able to repeat large portions of both the Old and the New Testament. Thoughts of God were associated alike with the sublime scenery of nature and with the humble blessings of daily life. Little children learned to look with gratitude to God as the giver of every favor and every comfort.

    Parents, tender and affectionate as they were, loved their children too wisely to accustom them to self-indulgence. Before them was a life of trial and hardship, perhaps a martyr's death. They were educated from childhood to endure hardness, to submit to control, and yet to think and act for themselves. Very early they were taught to bear responsibilities, to be guarded in speech, and to understand the wisdom of silence. One indiscreet word let fall in the hearing of their enemies might imperil not only the life of the speaker, but the lives of hundreds of his brethren; for as wolves hunting their prey did the enemies of truth pursue those who dared to claim freedom of religious faith.

    The Waldenses had sacrificed their worldly prosperity for the truth's sake, and with persevering patience they toiled for their bread. Every spot of tillable land among the mountains was carefully improved; the valleys and the less fertile hillsides were made to yield their increase. Economy and severe self-denial formed a part of the education which the children received as their only legacy. They were taught that God designs life to be a discipline, and that their wants could be supplied only by personal labor, by forethought, care, and faith. The process was laborious and wearisome, but it was wholesome, just what man needs in his fallen state, the school which God has provided for his training and development. While the youth were inured to toil and hardship, the culture of the intellect was not neglected. They were taught that all their powers belonged to God, and that all were to be improved and developed for His service.

    The Vaudois churches, in their purity and simplicity, resembled the church of apostolic times. Rejecting the supremacy of the pope and prelate, they held the Bible as the only supreme, infallible authority. Their pastors, unlike the lordly priests of Rome, followed the example of their Master, who "came not to be ministered unto, but to minister." They fed the flock of God, leading them to the green pastures and living fountains of His holy word. Far from the monuments of human pomp and pride the people assembled, not in magnificent churches or grand cathedrals, but beneath the shadow of the mountains, in the Alpine valleys, or, in time of danger, in some rocky stronghold, to listen to the words of truth from the servants of Christ. The pastors not only preached the gospel, but they visited the sick, catechized the children, admonished the erring, and labored to settle disputes and promote harmony and brotherly love. In times of peace they were sustained by the freewill offerings of the people; but, like Paul the tentmaker, each learned some trade or profession by which, if necessary, to provide for his own support.

    From their pastors the youth received instruction. While attention was given to branches of general learning, the Bible was made the chief study. The Gospels of Matthew and John were committed to memory, with many of the Epistles. They were employed also in copying the Scriptures. Some manuscripts contained the whole Bible, others only brief selections, to which some simple explanations of the text were added by those who were able to expound the Scriptures. Thus were brought forth the treasures of truth so long concealed by those who sought to exalt themselves above God.

    By patient, untiring labor, sometimes in the deep, dark caverns of the earth, by the light of torches, the Sacred Scriptures were written out, verse by verse, chapter by chapter. Thus the work went on, the revealed will of God shining out like pure gold; how much brighter, clearer, and more powerful because of the trials undergone for its sake only those could realize who were engaged in the work. Angels from heaven surrounded these faithful workers.

    Satan had urged on the papal priests and prelates to bury the word of truth beneath the rubbish of error, heresy, and superstition; but in a most wonderful manner it was preserved uncorrupted through all the ages of darkness. It bore not the stamp of man, but the impress of God. Men have been unwearied in their efforts to obscure the plain, simple meaning of the Scriptures, and to make them contradict their own testimony; but like the ark upon the billowy deep, the word of God outrides the storms that threaten it with destruction. As the mine has rich veins of gold and silver hidden beneath the surface, so that all must dig who would discover its precious stores, so the Holy Scriptures have treasures of truth that are revealed only to the earnest, humble, prayerful seeker. God designed the Bible to be a lessonbook to all mankind, in childhood, youth, and manhood, and to be studied through all time. He gave His word to men as a revelation of Himself. Every new truth discerned is a fresh disclosure of the character of its Author. The study of the Scriptures is the means divinely ordained to bring men into closer connection with their Creator and to give them a clearer knowledge of His will. It is the medium of communication between God and man.

    While the Waldenses regarded the fear of the Lord as the beginning of wisdom, they were not blind to the importance of a contact with the world, a knowledge of men and of active life, in expanding the mind and quickening the perceptions. From their schools in the mountains some of the youth were sent to institutions of learning in the cities of France or Italy, where was a more extended field for study, thought, and observation than in their native Alps. The youth thus sent forth were exposed to temptation, they witnessed vice, they encountered Satan's wily agents, who urged upon them the most subtle heresies and the most dangerous deceptions. But their education from childhood had been of a character to prepare them for all this.

    In the schools whither they went, they were not to make confidants of any. Their garments were so prepared as to conceal their greatest treasure--the precious manuscripts of the Scriptures. These, the fruit of months and years of toil, they carried with them, and whenever they could do so without exciting suspicion, they cautiously placed some portion in the way of those whose hearts seemed open to receive the truth. From their mother's knee the Waldensian youth had been trained with this purpose in view; they understood their work and faithfully performed it. Converts to the true faith were won in these institutions of learning, and frequently its principles were found to be permeating the entire school; yet the papal leaders could not, by the closest inquiry, trace the so-called corrupting heresy to its source.

    The spirit of Christ is a missionary spirit. The very first impulse of the renewed heart is to bring others also to the Saviour. Such was the spirit of the Vaudois Christians. They felt that God required more of them than merely to preserve the truth in its purity in their own churches; that a solemn responsibility rested upon them to let their light shine forth to those who were in darkness; by the mighty power of God's word they sought to break the bondage which Rome had imposed. The Vaudois ministers were trained as missionaries, everyone who expected to enter the ministry being required first to gain an experience as an evangelist.

    Each was to serve three years in some mission field before taking charge of a church at home. This service, requiring at the outset self-denial and sacrifice, was a fitting introduction to the pastor's life in those times that tried men's souls. The youth who received ordination to the sacred office saw before them, not the prospect of earthly wealth and glory, but a life of toil and danger, and possibly a martyr's fate. The missionaries went out two and two, as Jesus sent forth His disciples. With each young man was usually associated a man of age and experience, the youth being under the guidance of his companion, who was held responsible for his training, and whose instruction he was required to heed. These colaborers were not always together, but often met for prayer and counsel, thus strengthening each other in the faith.

    To have made known the object of their mission would have ensured its defeat; therefore they carefully concealed their real character. Every minister possessed a knowledge of some trade or profession, and the missionaries prosecuted their work under cover of a secular calling. Usually they chose that of merchant or peddler. "They carried silks, jewelry, and other articles, at that time not easily purchasable save at distant marts; and they were welcomed as merchants where they would have been spurned as missionaries."-- Wylie, b. 1, ch. 7. All the while their hearts were uplifted to God for wisdom to present a treasure more precious than gold or gems. They secretly carried about with them copies of the Bible, in whole or in part; and whenever an opportunity was presented, they called the attention of their customers to these manuscripts. Often an interest to read God's word was thus awakened, and some portion was gladly left with those who desired to receive it.

    The work of these missionaries began in the plains and valleys at the foot of their own mountains, but it extended far beyond these limits. With naked feet and in garments coarse and travel-stained as were those of their Master, they passed through great cities and penetrated to distant lands. Everywhere they scattered the precious seed. Churches sprang up in their path, and the blood of martyrs witnessed for the truth. The day of God will reveal a rich harvest of souls garnered by the labors of these faithful men. Veiled and silent, the word of God was making its way through Christendom and meeting a glad reception in the homes and hearts of men.

    To the Waldenses the Scriptures were not merely a record of God's dealings with men in the past, and a revelation of the responsibilities and duties of the present, but an unfolding of the perils and glories of the future. They believed that the end of all things was not far distant, and as they studied the Bible with prayer and tears they were the more deeply impressed with its precious utterances and with their duty to make known to others its saving truths. They saw the plan of salvation clearly revealed in the sacred pages, and they found comfort, hope, and peace in believing in Jesus. As the light illuminated their understanding and made glad their hearts, they longed to shed its beams upon those who were in the darkness of papal error.

    They saw that under the guidance of pope and priest, multitudes were vainly endeavoring to obtain pardon by afflicting their bodies for the sin of their souls. Taught to trust to their good works to save them, they were ever looking to themselves, their minds dwelling upon their sinful condition, seeing themselves exposed to the wrath of God, afflicting soul and body, yet finding no relief. Thus conscientious souls were bound by the doctrines of Rome. Thousands abandoned friends and kindred, and spent their lives in convent cells. By oft-repeated fasts and cruel scourgings, by midnight vigils, by prostration for weary hours upon the cold, damp stones of their dreary abode, by long pilgrimages, by humiliating penance and fearful torture, thousands vainly sought to obtain peace of conscience. Oppressed with a sense of sin, and haunted with the fear of God's avenging wrath, many suffered on, until exhausted nature gave way, and without one ray of light or hope they sank into the tomb.

    The Waldenses longed to break to these starving souls the bread of life, to open to them the messages of peace in the promises of God, and to point them to Christ as their only hope of salvation. The doctrine that good works can atone for the transgression of God's law they held to be based upon falsehood. Reliance upon human merit intercepts the view of Christ's infinite love. Jesus died as a sacrifice for man because the fallen race can do nothing to recommend themselves to God. The merits of a crucified and risen Saviour are the foundation of the Christian's faith. The dependence of the soul upon Christ is as real, and its connection with Him must be as close, as that of a limb to the body, or of a branch to the vine.

    The teachings of popes and priests had led men to look upon the character of God, and even of Christ, as stern, gloomy, and forbidding. The Saviour was represented as so far devoid of sympathy with man in his fallen state that the mediation of priests and saints must be invoked. Those whose minds had been enlightened by the word of God longed to point these souls to Jesus as their compassionate, loving Saviour, standing with outstretched arms, inviting all to come to Him with their burden of sin, their care and weariness. They longed to clear away the obstructions which Satan had piled up that men might not see the promises, and come directly to God, confessing their sins, and obtaining pardon and peace.

    Eagerly did the Vaudois missionary unfold to the inquiring mind the precious truths of the gospel. Cautiously he produced the carefully written portions of the Holy Scriptures. It was his greatest joy to give hope to the conscientious, sin-stricken soul, who could see only a God of vengeance, waiting to execute justice. With quivering lip and tearful eye did he, often on bended knees, open to his brethren the precious promises that reveal the sinner's only hope. Thus the light of truth penetrated many a darkened mind, rolling back the cloud of gloom, until the Sun of Righteousness shone into the heart with healing in His beams. It was often the case that some portion of Scripture was read again and again, the hearer desiring it to be repeated, as if he would assure himself that he had heard aright. Especially was the repetition of these words eagerly desired: "The blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanseth us from all sin." 1 John 1:7. "As Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up: that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have eternal life." John 3:14, 15.

    Many were undeceived in regard to the claims of Rome. They saw how vain is the mediation of men or angels in behalf of the sinner. As the true light dawned upon their minds they exclaimed with rejoicing: "Christ is my priest; His blood is my sacrifice; His altar is my confessional." They cast themselves wholly upon the merits of Jesus, repeating the words, "Without faith it is impossible to please Him." Hebrews 11:6. "There is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved." Acts 4:12.

    The assurance of a Saviour's love seemed too much for some of these poor tempest-tossed souls to realize. So great was the relief which it brought, such a flood of light was shed upon them, that they seemed transported to heaven. Their hands were laid confidingly in the hand of Christ; their feet were planted upon the Rock of Ages. All fear of death was banished. They could now covet the prison and the fagot if they might thereby honor the name of their Redeemer.

    In secret places the word of God was thus brought forth and read, sometimes to a single soul, sometimes to a little company who were longing for light and truth. Often the entire night was spent in this manner. So great would be the wonder and admiration of the listeners that the messenger of mercy was not infrequently compelled to cease his reading until the understanding could grasp the tidings of salvation. Often would words like these be uttered: "Will God indeed accept my offering? Will He smile upon me? Will He pardon me?" The answer was read: "Come unto Me, all ye that labor and are heavy-laden, and I will give you rest." Matthew 11:28.

    Faith grasped the promise, and the glad response was heard: "No more long pilgrimages to make; no more painful journeys to holy shrines. I may come to Jesus just as I am, sinful and unholy, and He will not spurn the penitential prayer. 'Thy sins be forgiven thee.' Mine, even mine, may be forgiven!"

    A tide of sacred joy would fill the heart, and the name of Jesus would be magnified by praise and thanksgiving. Those happy souls returned to their homes to diffuse light, to repeat to others, as well as they could, their new experience; that they had found the true and living Way. There was a strange and solemn power in the words of Scripture that spoke directly to the hearts of those who were longing for the truth. It was the voice of God, and it carried conviction to those who heard.

    The messenger of truth went on his way; but his appearance of humility, his sincerity, his earnestness and deep fervor, were subjects of frequent remark. In many instances his hearers had not asked him whence he came or whither he went. They had been so overwhelmed, at first with surprise, and afterward with gratitude and joy, that they had not thought to question him. When they had urged him to accompany them to their homes, he had replied that he must visit the lost sheep of the flock. Could he have been an angel from heaven? they queried.

    In many cases the messenger of truth was seen no more. He had made his way to other lands, or he was wearing out his life in some unknown dungeon, or perhaps his bones were whitening on the spot where he had witnessed for the truth. But the words he had left behind could not be destroyed. They were doing their work in the hearts of men; the blessed results will be fully known only in the judgment.

    The Waldensian missionaries were invading the kingdom of Satan, and the powers of darkness aroused to greater vigilance. Every effort to advance the truth was watched by the prince of evil, and he excited the fears of his agents. The papal leaders saw a portent of danger to their cause from the labors of these humble itinerants. If the light of truth were allowed to shine unobstructed, it would sweep away the heavy clouds of error that enveloped the people. It would direct the minds of men to God alone and would eventually destroy the supremacy of Rome.

    The very existence of this people, holding the faith of the ancient church, was a constant testimony to Rome's apostasy, and therefore excited the most bitter hatred and persecution. Their refusal to surrender the Scriptures was also an offense that Rome could not tolerate. She determined to blot them from the earth. Now began the most terrible crusades against God's people in their mountain homes. Inquisitors were put upon their track, and the scene of innocent Abel falling before the murderous Cain was often repeated.

    Again and again were their fertile lands laid waste, their dwellings and chapels swept away, so that where once were flourishing fields and the homes of an innocent, industrious people, there remained only a desert. As the ravenous beast is rendered more furious by the taste of blood, so the rage of the papists was kindled to greater intensity by the sufferings of their victims. Many of these witnesses for a pure faith were pursued across the mountains and hunted down in the valleys where they were hidden, shut in by mighty forests and pinnacles of rock.

    No charge could be brought against the moral character of this proscribed class. Even their enemies declared them to be a peaceable, quiet, pious people. Their grand offense was that they would not worship God according to the will of the pope. For this crime every humiliation, insult, and torture that men or devils could invent was heaped upon them.

    When Rome at one time determined to exterminate the hated sect, a bull was issued by the pope, condemning them as heretics, and delivering them to slaughter. (See Appendix.) They were not accused as idlers, or dishonest, or disorderly; but it was declared that they had an appearance of piety and sanctity that seduced "the sheep of the true fold." Therefore the pope ordered "that malicious and abominable sect of malignants," if they "refuse to abjure, to be crushed like venomous snakes."--Wylie, b. 16, ch. 1. Did this haughty potentate expect to meet those words again? Did he know that they were registered in the books of heaven, to confront him at the judgment? "Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these My brethren," said Jesus, "ye have done it unto Me." Matthew 25:40.

    This bull called upon all members of the church to join the crusade against the heretics. As an incentive to engage in this cruel work, it "absolved from all ecclesiastical pains and penalties, general and particular; it released all who joined the crusade from any oaths they might have taken; it legitimatized their title to any property they might have illegally acquired; and promised remission of all their sins to such as should kill any heretic. It annulled all contracts made in favor of Vaudois, ordered their domestics to abandon them, forbade all persons to give them any aid whatever, and empowered all persons to take possession of their property."--Wylie, b. 16, ch. 1. This document clearly reveals the master spirit behind the scenes. It is the roar of the dragon, and not the voice of Christ, that is heard therein.

    The papal leaders would not conform their characters to the great standard of God's law, but erected a standard to suit themselves, and determined to compel all to conform to this because Rome willed it. The most horrible tragedies were enacted. Corrupt and blasphemous priests and popes were doing the work which Satan appointed them. Mercy had no place in their natures. The same spirit that crucified Christ and slew the apostles, the same that moved the blood-thirsty Nero against the faithful in his day, was at work to rid the earth of those who were beloved of God.

    The persecutions visited for many centuries upon this God-fearing people were endured by them with a patience and constancy that honored their Redeemer. Notwithstanding the crusades against them, and the inhuman butchery to which they were subjected, they continued to send out their missionaries to scatter the precious truth. They were hunted to death; yet their blood watered the seed sown, and it failed not of yielding fruit. Thus the Waldenses witnessed for God centuries before the birth of Luther. Scattered over many lands, they planted the seeds of the Reformation that began in the time of Wycliffe, grew broad and deep in the days of Luther, and is to be carried forward to the close of time by those who also are willing to suffer all things for "the word of God, and for the testimony of Jesus Christ." Revelation 1:9.

    -The Great Controversy
  10. yeshua4me2

    yeshua4me2 New Member

    Jul 6, 2005
    Likes Received:
    [/i][/QUOTE]another identifing sign of Jesus' New Covenant church:
    Jesus' Church is a Sabbath-keeping church (Isa. 66:23), which also keeps His "appointed seasons" (Zechariah 14:16-19).

    if that is true i have a couple of questions for you then:

    1. If every man from Adam to Moses kept the Sabbath, why is the Hebrew word for the weekly Sabbath found in the ten commandments, never found in the book of Genesis? Why is no one before Moses ever being told to keep the Sabbath. Why are there no examples of anyone keeping the Sabbath?
    2. Why were the Patriarchs never instructed about he Sabbath, but were instructed regarding: offerings: Gen 4:3-4, Altars Gen 8:20, Priests: Gen 14:18, Tithes: Gen 14:20, Circumcision: Gen 17:10, Marriage: Gen 2:24 & Gen 34:9. Why would God leave out the "all important" Sabbath command?
    3. If the fact that God wrote the 10 commandments on stone proves they are forever, then whatever happened to the two stone tablets that God gave Adam at the beginning of time? Why is Moses the first one to see a stone tablet written by the finger of God?
    4. Why is the weekly Sabbath commandment never quoted in the New Testament?
    5. Why is the Sabbath the only one of the ten commandments that are said to be "throughout your generations", the usual phrase that indicates it was a temporary ceremonial law only for the Jews?
    6. Why is there no example of exclusively Christians coming together on the Sabbath day as a church or prayer meeting after the resurrection of Christ?
    7. Why is there no command in the New Testament for Christians to keep the Sabbath holy?
    8. While Paul taught in the synagogues up to 84 times, why does the Bible never say he kept the sabbath?
    9. If Paul’s action of preaching to non-believers 84 times in the book of Acts on the Sabbath make him a Sabbath keeper, is a Seventh-day Adventist pastor a Sunday keeper if we invite him for 84 Sundays in a row to teach us about God’s word?
    10. How could Adam, Noah and Abraham keep the Sabbath, when Deuteronomy 5:2-4 says that the 10 commandment covenant (see was "not made with any of the fathers of Israel who lived before Moses."
    11. If we must follow the example of Jesus in all things like keeping the Sabbath, then why do Sabbatarians not follow the example of Jesus in circumcision, animal sacrifices and keeping Passover?
    12. If the Sabbath was for Gentiles and Adam, Noah and Abraham, then why is the Sabbath a sign to remind their exodus from Egypt? Exodus 16:23,29; 31:13-18. Were either Abraham or Seventh-day Adventists ever slaves in Egypt?
    13. If the Sabbath law is still in force, then why do they not stone their own members when they break the Sabbath as the law said?
    14. Ellen G. White, who is considered inspired by Seventh-day Adventists, said that the Pope changed the Sabbath in about 321 AD. Why do all Adventists today reject their inspired prophet and say the change of the Sabbath occurred in about 140 AD? If White was wrong about this, was she wrong when she traveled to heaven and saw the 4th commandment glowing brighter than all the rest?
    15. If the current position of the Seventh-day Adventist church is that the change from Saturday to Sunday took place in 140 AD, doesn’t that mean that they have come a long way from Whites 325 AD and have only 40 more years to travel to reach the truth of the Apostolic age?
    16. If the change from Saturday to Sunday happened, why is there absolutely no discussion of this change of actual day for the first 600 years of church history. Merely calling Sunday the Sabbath doesn’t count!
    17. If Sabbatarians reject White’s inspiration, that Constantine change the Sabbath day to Sunday, why do they keep bringing Constantine up as proof? If Constantine changed the Sabbath to Sunday, why does here merely legislate that work must stop on Sunday with no actual mention of the day being moved?
    18. If the first/old covenant was abolished according to Heb 8:13 and the Ten commandment law was that first covenant (Ex 34:27-28; 1 Kings 8:9,21; Heb 9:1-4), then why do Sabbatarians want to keep the first/old covenant?
    19. Why is the universal record of history (75-500AD) 100% in unanimous agreement that Christians never kept the Sabbath (7th day) and have always worshipped on Sunday?
    20. Why is the universal record of history (75-500AD) 100% in unanimous agreement that Christians ate the Lord’s Supper every Sunday in the tradition of Acts 20:7?
    21. Why is the universal record of history (75-500AD) 100% in unanimous agreement that Christians always called Sunday the Lord’s Day because, they said, this was the day Jesus rose from the dead?
    22. Why has no Sabbatarian every produced even one historical quote (75-500AD) that says Christians kept the Sabbath?
    23. If the Sabbath is not a ceremonial law, then why is it lumped into the same identical class of "holy convocations" as the rest of the Jewish feast days? Lev 23:2; Ex 20:9; 31:17
    24. If the 10 commandments remain but the book of law was abolished, then why did God put two copies of the 10 commandments in the book of the law? Ex 20; Deut 5
    25. How can there possibly be an difference between "the law of God" and the "Law of Moses" when God gave the Law of Moses (Ezra 7:6; Neh 8:1) and Moses gave the Law of God (Neh 10:29; 2 Chron 34:14)?
    26. If there is a distinction between the moral and ceremonial laws, why are the Jewish feast days called part of the Law of the Lord? (2 Chron 331:3)
    27. If there is a distinction between the moral and ceremonial laws, why in a single chapter of Nehemiah 8are the following phrases all used interchangeably: "book of the law of Moses" v1, "the law" v2, "book of the law" v3, "the law of god" v8, "book of the law of god" v18?
    28. Why are the two most important commandments contained within the "ceremonial law of Moses that was Sabbatarians say was nailed to the cross? (Matthew 22:36-40)
    29. Why did Jesus say Moses gave the 10 commandment law: "Thou shalt not kill" in Jn 7:19?
    30. If the Sabbath cannot change, because God cannot change (Mal 3:6) then what about all the other feast days and laws that changed? Heb 7:12. And why did Jesus give a "a new commandment" in John 13:34?
    31. If the ten commandments are going to be in heaven, what is the use of "thou shalt not commit adultery", if there is no marriage in heaven? Lk 20:34-35
    32. If the Sabbath was given to all men, why were Gentiles called "strangers". Why were Gentiles outside the gates not required to keep the Sabbath? Ex 20:10.
    33. How could the Sabbath be a sign between God and Israel, if all nations were expected to keep it? Ex 31:17
    34. Why did God send the Jews into Babylonian Captivity for breaking the Sabbath, but never ever criticized any Gentiles for never keeping the Sabbath?
    35. Why did God often criticize the Gentiles via the prophets for moral violations, but never for not keeping the Sabbath?
    36. If the Gentiles were supposed to keep the Sabbath, why are they called "strangers of the Covenant" in Eph 2:12?
    37. If the term, "the law" always means the 10 commandments, then why is Leviticus called "The Law" in Mt 22:35ff, Numbers called "The Law" in Mt 12:5, Deuteronomy called "The Law" in Mt 22:35f, Psalms called "The Law" in Jn 10:34,45, Rom 3:10-12; 3:13-14,19, the Prophets called "The Law" in 1 Cor 14:21 and the Ten commandments are called "The Law" that is abolished in Rom 7:4-7?
    38. If the term "commandments" always means the 10 commandments, then why are the laws that are not part of the ten commandments but called commandments in Mt 19:16-19 not also included?
    39. If the term "commandments" always means the 10 commandments, then what did Paul call the injunction for prophet’s wives to keep silent in the assemblies, a "commandment of the Lord" in 1 Cor 14:37?
    40. If the term "keep my commandments" always means the 10 commandments, then why is this a new commandment? Jn 15:10-12 + Jn 13:34.
    41. If only the ten commandments are going to endure until heaven and earth pass away, why did Jesus say the law AND THE PROPHETS? Mt 5:17-18
    42. When Jesus was asked, "Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?" why did Jesus NOT QUOTE from the 10 commandments, but from the abolished ceremonial law of Moses? Matthew 22:36-40
    43. If the 10 commandments are the highest and most complete expression of God’s will, then why did it lack the two most important commandments? Matthew 22:36-40 where is the prohibition against drunkeness, homosexuality and fornication?
    44. If the 10 commandments are the highest and most complete expression of God’s will, then why did Jesus give a new commandment to "love one another, even as I have loved you" John 13:34. Where were the Jews told to love their neighbor as Yahweh loved them?
    45. If Christians worshipping on Sunday is equal to Sun Worship, then is Adventists worshipping on Saturday equal to Saturn worship?
    46. If Sabbatarians will boldly quote "scholars" who are really Bible trashers and skeptics who claim "the origin of Sunday worship is entirely pagan", like Arthur Weigall in his ridiculous little book, "the paganism in our Christianity", will these same Sabbatarians turn a few pages later where these same authors say the origin of the Sabbath is also pagan? "I have, already mentioned that Sunday, too, was a pagan holy-day; and in this chapter I propose to discuss the origin of this custom of keeping one day in the week as a Sabbath, or "day of rest,' and' to show that the practice was forcefully opposed by Jesus Christ. The origin of the seven-day week which was used by the Jews and certain other peoples, but not till, later by the Greeks or Romans, is to be sought in some primitive worship of the moon (The Paganism in Our Christianity, Arthur Weigall, 1928, p209,210-211)
    47. If the Sabbath is a moral law, why did Jesus say that David, the priests, a man with his donkey could all break the Sabbath without sin? Mt 12:1-14; Mk 2:23f, Lk 13:10-17; 14:1-6 Jn 5:8-18; 7:19-24; 9:14-16.
    48. If the Sabbath is a moral law, why did God grow tired of the Jews keeping it and told them to stop keeping the Sabbath? Isa 1:13-14 Did God ever grow weary of anyone not committing adultery or murder, and tell them to be immoral and kill?
    49. If the Sabbath is a moral law, how could Jesus break it without sinning? Jn 5:18
    50. If one of the distinctions between the ten commandments was proven by the fact they were written by the finger of God, why did Moses copy them out twice with his own hand? How can there be any distinction between the 10 commandments in the ark and the book of the law beside the ark, if the book contained two copies of exactly what was in the ark?
    51. Why are the terms "ceremonial law" and "moral law" never found in the Bible. Why is the word ceremonial or any of its roots never found in the same verse as the word LAW and why is the word moral or any of its roots never found in the same verse as the word LAW?
    52. If there is a distinction between moral and ceremonial laws, why do "God’s laws" and "the law of God" contain ceremonial laws. Why do "Moses law" and the "law of Moses" contain moral laws?
    53. If there is a distinction between moral and ceremonial laws, why does the "law of God" command animal sacrifices Lk 2:23-24 and the "law of the Lord" contains burnt offerings 2 Chron 31:3; 1 Chron 16:40?
    54. If there is a distinction between moral and ceremonial laws, then why is the book of the law filled with moral laws not contained in the 10 commandments?
    55. If there is a distinction between the Law of the Lord and the Law of Moses, why in 2 Chron 35:26 are "the acts of Josiah and his deeds of devotion as written in the law of the Lord"?
    56. If there is a distinction between moral and ceremonial laws, then why does the Law of God include new moons, solemn feast days: Ps 81:3-4?
    57. If there is a distinction between the Law of the Lord and the Law of Moses, why did the law tell Israel to dwell in tents: Neh 8:14?
    58. If Jesus came to fulfill the law and the prophets, then didn’t Mt 5:17 say that only then would they be abolished before heaven and earth pass away? If the law and the prophets are still in force, doesn’t that prove Jesus didn’t fulfill the law completely?
    59. When you ask me, "if the 10 commandments are abolished, does that mean we can steal", can I ask you, "when you travel from Canada to the USA, does that mean you can steal? Is it possible that two completely different "codes of law" (law of Moses vs. law of Christ) have the same laws just like Canada and the USA?
    60. If the Jewish law against eating pork was abolished by Christ, why do Sabbatarians continue to enforce what they call, "the ceremonial law of Moses": Mk 7:18-19; 1 Tim 4:1-4; Rom 14:2; Acts 10:9-16
    61. If the Jewish law of Tithing is forbidden in 2 Cor 9, why do Sabbatarians practice from "ceremonial law of Moses"?
    62. If the Jewish Sabbath was abolished in Col 2:14-16, yet Sabbatarians keep the Sabbath, which itself is the only ceremonial law of the 10 commandments?
    63. Why do you practice Tithing which is Prohibited: 2 Cor 9:7 forbid Eating Pork, which is Permitted: Mk 7:18-19 and keep the Sabbath which is Abolished: Col 2:14-16? Aren’t all three of these ceremonial laws?
    64. When Sabbatarians attempt to prove there is a distinction between the moral vs. ceremonial laws, the law of God vs. the Law of Moses, the 10 commandments vs. and the book of the law, and they shown countless bible passages that destroy any distinction Sabbatarians might dream up, will they at least be honest and admit they need to find some definitive way to create this false distinction that does not exist in the Bible and will try again tomorrow?
    65. Why do you refuse to accept that Col 2:16 contains the Old Testament pattern of referring to the Jewish holy says in a yearly, monthly, weekly sequence as in 1 Chronicles 23:31, 2 Chronicles 31:3, 2 Chronicles 8:13, 2 Chronicles 2:4, Nehemiah 10:33, Ezekiel 45:17, Hosea 2:11, Galatians 4:10?
    66. If the plural "sabbaton" in Col 2:16 cannot refer to weekly Sabbath day, then why does plural "sabbaton" refer to the weekly Sabbath day in Matthew 28:1, Luke 4:16, Acts 16:13, Exodus 20:8 (in Septuagint) Leviticus 23:37-38 (in Septuagint)?
    67. If in Col 2:16, the lack of the definite article before the word "Sabbath" in the Greek proves it cannot refer to the weekly Sabbath, then why does the weekly Sabbath lack the definite article in Matthew 28:1, John 5:9, 10, 16?
    68. If Isa 66:23 proves the Sabbath will be in heaven, will the new moon festival also be there? "from new moon to new moon And from sabbath to sabbath".
    69. If Hebrews 4 teaches we are to keep the weekly Sabbath, then why does the text say we are to enter a rest that none of the Jews at the time of Joshua in the promised land ever experienced in v 8?
    70. If the Sabbath will endure forever because it is called "eternal" then won’t all the Jewish feasts and circumcision also endure because it is also called eternal in Gen 17:10-14 (same Hebrew word used)
    71. If the Sabbath will endure forever because it is called "holy" then won’t all the Jewish feasts also endure forever because they are also called holy?
    72. If the Sabbath will endure forever because God hallowed it, then won’t Solomon's temple Ps 65:4; 1 Ki 9:3 and the vessels in the tabernacle Ex 40:9; Num 31:6; 1 Ki 8:4 also endure forever because God hallowed them too?
    73. If the Sabbath will endure forever because it was an eternal sign between God and his people, then shouldn’t we also still practice circumcision Gen 17:11 and Passover Ex 12:13 because it too is called an eternal sign between God and his people?
    74. If it is only through the Sabbath that we can know that it is God who sanctifies us Ex 31:13, then what ever happened to faith in Christ sanctifying us? Any if we should therefore keep the Sabbath, then we must also build the tabernacle, for the Bible says through it we may know it is God who sanctifies us Ezel 37:28?
    75. If the fact that the Sabbath is mentioned in the New Testament after Pentecost proves it is still in force, then does the mention of The Day of Pentecost Acts 2:1, The days of unleavened bread Acts 12:3; 20:6, Days of Purification: Acts 21:26, Animal Sacrifices: Acts 21:26, Circumcision: Acts 16:3, Temple worship: Acts 24:12 prove we must keep these too because they are also mentioned and must therefore also still be in force like the Sabbath?
    76. If Seventh-day Adventists want to deny that their official position is that worshipping on Sunday is the Mark of the Beast, do they realize that the "inspired" Ellen G. White, Uriah Smith, the Advent review and Leo Schreven (who conducts "Revelation seminars" today) all call it the mark of the beast?
    77. Christians can find 21 reasons why the first day of the week is significant to their faith as Christians in the New Testament. Can Sabbatarians find even one reason in the New Testament why the Sabbath has any meaning distinct to Christians?
    78. Did you know that the Jewish Sabbath was significant to the Jews because it was a memoral of this present physical creation and their deliverance from the bondage of Egypt and that the first day of the week is a memorial of our new creation in Christ (2 Cor 5:7) and our deliverance from the bondage of sin. (Gal 4:4-5; Eph 1:7)
    79. Did you know that regardless of whether the Sadducee’s or Pharisee’s method of calculating Pentecost was used the year Christ died, both would calculate Pentecost in Acts 2:1 as the first day of the week. Did you also know that the official position of the Seventh-day Adventist church was that Pentecost in Acts 2:1 fell on a Sunday that year?
    80. Do you realize that the phrase, "that no collections be made when I come" in 1 Cor 16:2 proves the Christians were forbidden from saving up their offerings each week at home and demanded they put it into a common treasury every Sunday?
    81. Did you know that 1 Cor 16:2 actually says, "EVERY 1st day" because the same Greek phrase is also found in Acts 13:14 "appointed elders in EVERY church". Did you know that you must give every 1st day of the week in to the church’s common treasury?
    82. If Jesus died on Wednesday and rose on the Sabbath rather than a Friday - Sunday duration because you demand a full 72 hours in the grave, then why did Jesus count the Friday - Sunday duration as three days in Lk 13:32?
    83. If Jesus died on Wednesday and rose on the Sabbath rather than a Friday - Sunday duration because you demand a full 72 hours in the grave, why is exactly a 72 hour period called 4 days by Peter in Acts 10:3+9+23+24+30?
    84. If the fact that the 10 commandments were written in stone, that proves they will never be abolished, then where was Adam’s stone copy of the 10 commandments? Why did God not give Adam a stone copy once for all time? Why is it that Moses was first person in history to not only see the 10 commandments, but the first person to hold the stone tablets upon which the 10 commandments were written? Why do Seventh-day Adventists argue that the ten commandment law is no longer written in stone, but in the flesh of the human heart in 2 Corinthians 3:3? (Of course 2 Cor 3:3 says the 10 commandments were abolished and the new Covenant, the law of Christ is written on human hearts)
    85. If only the 10 commandments we can "live", then why does Ezek 20:11 say this of the "ceremonial law", "I gave them My statutes and informed them of My ordinances, by which, if a man observes them, he will live." (Ezek 20:11)?

    these were originally asked by Steve Rudd, but i have co-oped them for this thread.

    thankyou and God Bless