Monday, March 25, 2013

Mystical Interpretation

"The truths most plainly revealed in the Bible have been involved in doubt and darkness by learned men, who, with a pretense of great wisdom, teach that the Scriptures have a mystical, a secret, spiritual meaning not apparent in the language employed. These men are false teachers. It was to such a class that Jesus declared: 'Ye know not the Scriptures, neither the power of God.' Mark 12:24." GC 598, 599

"No one is to put truth to the torture by cheap imaginings, by putting a forced, mystical construction upon the Word. Thus they are in danger of turning the truth of God into a lie." Letter 207, 1899

"It was His design that His disciples should take the plain, unadulterated truth for the guide of their life. They were not to add to His words, or give a forced meaning to His utterances. They were not to put a mystical interpretation upon the plain teaching of the Scriptures, and draw from theological stores to build up some man-made theory. It was through putting a mystical meaning upon the plain words of God, that sacred and vital truths were made of little significance, while the theories of men were made prominent. It was in this way that men were led to teach for doctrines the commandments of men, and that they rejected the commandment of God, that they might keep their own tradition." 5BC 1089

"The leaders of Israel professed to be the expositors of God's word, but they had studied it only to sustain their traditions, and enforce their man-made observances. By their interpretation they made it express sentiments that God had never given. Their mystical construction made indistinct that which He had made plain. They disputed over insignificant technicalities, and practically denied the most essential truths. Thus infidelity was sown broadcast. God's word was robbed of its power, and evil spirits worked their will." DA 257

"History is repeating. With the open Bible before them, and professing to reverence its teachings, many of the religious leaders of our time are destroying faith in it as the word of God. They busy themselves with dissecting the word, and set their own opinions above its plainest statements. In their hands God's word loses its regenerating power. This is why infidelity runs riot, and iniquity is rife." DA  258

"It was his [Lucifer's] policy to perplex with subtle arguments concerning the purposes of God. Everything that was simple he shrouded in mystery, and by artful perversion cast doubt upon the plainest statements of Jehovah." PP 41

"In the days of Christ the rabbis put a forced, mystical construction upon many portions of Scripture. Because the plain teaching of God's word condemned their practices, they tried to destroy its force. The same thing is done today. The word of God is made to appear mysterious and obscure in order to excuse transgression of His law. Christ rebuked these practices in His day. He taught that the word of God was to be understood by all. He pointed to the Scriptures as of unquestionable authority, and we should do the same. The Bible is to be presented as the word of the infinite God, as the end of all controversy and the foundation of all faith." COL 39, 40

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Creed Power

"Rome withheld the Bible from the people and required all men to accept her teachings in its place. It was the work of the Reformation to restore to men the word of God; but is it not too true that in the churches of our time men are taught to rest their faith upon their creed and the teachings of their church rather than on the Scriptures? Said Charles Beecher, speaking of the Protestant churches: 'They shrink from any rude word against creeds with the same sensitiveness with which those holy fathers would have shrunk from a rude word against the rising veneration of saints and martyrs which they were fostering. . . . The Protestant evangelical denominations have so tied up one another's hands, and their own, that, between them all, a man cannot become a preacher at all, anywhere, without accepting some book besides the Bible.... There is nothing imaginary in the statement that the creed power is now beginning to prohibit the Bible as really as Rome did, though in a subtler way.'--Sermon on 'The Bible a Sufficient Creed,' delivered at Fort Wayne, Indiana, Feb. 22, 1846.

"When faithful teachers expound the word of God, there arise men of learning, ministers professing to understand the Scriptures, who denounce sound doctrine as heresy, and thus turn away inquirers after truth. Were it not that the world is hopelessly intoxicated with the wine of Babylon, multitudes would be convicted and converted by the plain, cutting truths of the word of God. But religious faith appears so confused and discordant that the people know not what to believe as truth. The sin of the world's impenitence lies at the door of the church." The Great Controversy, pages 388, 389

Friday, March 1, 2013


In the ancient Babylonian mysteries the sun was the supreme deity, and all the other gods and goddesses were but different manifestations of that one god. The moon represented the female aspect of the pagan godhead, and all of nature was worshiped as the offspring of that mystical union. Thus a triad formed, consisting of a father, a mother, and a child. This arrangement could be seen wherever heathenism spread, from its probable origin with Nimrod, Semiramis, and her son, to Egypt, Greece, Rome, and around the world.

The actual basis of the mysteries was astrology. Every pagan god was an impersonation of some heavenly body, whether a planet or a constellation. In the serpentine pathway of the planets through the zodiac, the heathen envisioned a seven-headed dragon. Identified in Revelation 12:9, the ultimate object of all pagan worship is Satan. The superstitious pagans, living in fear of their gods, performed acts of worship in order to appease and placate them.

Each astrological deity was assigned a number. The heathen figured they could conciliate the gods by wearing a charm or an amulet representing the deity they wished to please.

The amulet shown here displays the numbers 1-36, arranged in a magic square. All the deities associated with those numbers were therefore represented. Since the celestial sphere was made up of 36 divisions, the number 666, which is the sum of all those numbers, took in the entire system of pagan worship.

The book of Revelation tells us that 666 is the number of the beast. It is the number of his name, and it is the number of a man. He that has understanding is invited to count the number (Revelation 13:17, 18).

The dragon, the beast, and the false prophet are the three manifestations of the Babylonian system of worship (Revelation 16:13). As the number that represents the whole Babylonian system, 666 is therefore the number of the dragon, the beast, and the false prophet.

The sun, as the grand centerpiece of all the starry host, was personified in its deified human priest on earth. Thus the kings of Babylon, and later the kings of Pergamum, and eventually the Roman emperors, were worshipped as the living manifestation of the sun god, the personal embodiment of its cult. As high priest of the sacred mysteries, those royal personages carried the title of Pontifex Maximus. As the pontiff represented the whole system, 666 was therefore the number of his name.