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First Published December 2020; pp. 3-4
Is the Adventist Hermeneutical Approach to Daniel and Revelation Changing?
First Published December 2020; pp. 5-24
This article investigates whether, within Seventh-day Adventism, the hermeneutical approach is changing, in particular with regard to the prophetic portions of Daniel and Revelation: Is the traditional historicist position still dominant or are other approaches also making inroads? A number of official and semi-official sources are sur-veyed, as well as publications from scholars and popular authors. The article zooms in on the treatment of four issues in the interpretation of apocalyptic prophecy: (1) the year-day principle, (2) the identity of the little horn (Dan. 7) and the sea-beast (Rev. 13), (3) the seal of God and the mark of the beast, and (4) the number 666. It appears that the historicist approach continues to receive support, most strongly in official and semi-official publications, but less so in books by scholars and popular authors. Authors in the two latter categories are also inclined to attribute value to other approaches be-sides historicism. Quite generally, there is a tendency to be less specific, when compared to the past, in making specific historical applications to particular symbols.
The 1872 Declaration of Fundamental Principles:
On the Contextual-Theological Significance of Adventism’s First Statement of Beliefs
First Published December 2020; pp. 25-46
The 1872 Declaration of Fundamental Principles is a milestone in the de-velopment of Adventist theology in several regards. It still enshrined the denomination’s thinking of the period in a Millerite framework yet also indicated its move away from their Adventist competitors. It presented the movement’s beliefs in a unique structure and thus became an important tool for Adventist dogmatic self-reflection; at the same time, it canonized the anti-creedal paradox of rejecting norms secondary to Scripture while producing precisely such a normative statement. Overall, the Fundamental Principles are a crucial witness to the contextuality of 19th century Adventist theologizing.
Robert Sloan Donnell: From Righteousness by Faith to
First Published December 2020; pp. 47-84
Robert Sloan Donnell (1846–1937) was a Seventh-day Adventist pas-tor, evangelist and administrator. Donnell was president of the Indiana Conference at the time of the perfectionistic revival (also known as the “holy flesh” movement) which blossomed in that state in 1900. Donnell’s career in the denomination highlights a transformational period in Adventism marked by shifting views on the human nature of Christ, the baptism of the Holy Spirit, and the end of the world, as witnessed in the works of A.T. Jones, A.F. Ballenger, E.J. Waggoner, W.W. Prescott and Ellen G. White. Donnell’s struggle with perfectionism – especially in matters of health – is emblematic not only of the theological currents at work in the denomination at the time, but also of the way many today continue to conflate a particular view of con-summated soteriology (sinless perfection) with Adventism’s acceler-ated eschatology (the imminence of the end) in the form of Last Generation Theology.
Preparing Converts for the Second Coming of Christ: The Encounter of Seventh-day Adventist Missionaries with Indigenous Issues in Nigeria from 1900 to the 1940s
Chigemezi Nnadozie Wogu
First Published December 2020; pp. 85-102
This article explores the intricate and complex relationships of Seventh-day Adventist missionaries with indigenous issues during their mission work in Nigeria. It argues that despite their relative success, the approach of the missionaries to indigenous culture was coloured by points of conflict and the stark difference to their vision of Christ’s Parousia. As a result, indigenous issues like the position of women in the society and public matters, polygamy and charismatism in worship were divested of cultural significance and in some cases demonized and replaced with the Adventist alternative. Preparing converts for the second coming of Christ meant the disengagement of any cultural practice that seemingly turned the focus of converts away from the imminence of the kingdom of the otherworldly.
Forgotten Scriptures: Allusions to and Quotations of the Apocrypha by Ellen White
Matthew J. Korpman
First Published December 2020; pp. 109-146
Since Arthur White’s initial release of Ellen White’s comment about the Hidden Book (Apocrypha), it has been maintained that Mrs White never referred to or appeared to make use of apocryphal writings at any point in the years of her ministry that followed. In contrast to this working assumption, this article conducts a survey of her writings, identifying instances in which Mrs White appears to draw upon a considerable amount of apocryphal material in her writings. The conclusion of this article is that Ellen White made extensive use of the Apocrypha not only in the years prior to her comments in 1850, but long after, concluding only near her death. The article argues that her utilization of the material, synonymous with her attitude toward other biblical quotations, adds support that her early visionary claim in 1849 that the Apocrypha was the Word of God continued to function as a personal proposition for her in the ensuing decades of her ministry.
The Prophet as a Model of a Spiritual Leader
First Published December 2020; pp. 147-160
The article investigates the role of the prophet in Israel’s society, in order to provide a model for the church today. The first part offers a brief description of Israel’s society according to the covenant, especially of its “power system.” The power system in Israel appears as a “mobile power system” (Trigano), which combines reality with a “utopian vision” of the world. Furthermore, in that power system the prophet appears as its “mobile part,” a permanent correction: “God’s voice in the city” (Trigano). In a more concrete way, the prophets call to follow a “politics of justice” in the name of the covenant. The second part tries to apply the “prophetical ministry” to the life of the church. We observe that the gospel integrates the prophets’ “politics of justice” with the mission of the church – cf. Lk 4:16‒21. Accordingly, we try to describe the church’s mission as an “integral evangelization,” which includes this “politics of justice” as a fundamental part of its mission. We also try to define the role of the pastor in two categories which derive from the “prophetical ministry:” the “pastor-evangelist” and the “pastor-theologian.”
The Laws of Nature: Philosophical and Theological Perspectives of Evil in Nature
First Published December 2020; pp. 161-180
In contrast to “natural suffering,” the phenomenon of moral evil in the world is easier to comprehend and explain because it is caused by conscious, free acting agents. On the other hand, the so-called “natural suffering” of human beings could be triggered by irrational natural forces such as solar radiation etc. It transcends human rational potentials and makes us often ponder in silence without being able to utter something meaningful. This complicated question of evil in nature is discussed here from the perspectives of David Hume, Gottfried Leibniz, and the biblical Book of Job. According to Hume, the existence of evil in nature demonstrates that there is no God, that our ideas about Him are irrational and empty, and that nature is blind and unconcerned about human and animal suffering. Leibniz, on the other hand, claimed that at the time of creation of the world God had examined all the probabilities and realized only those which would result in the maximum of metaphysical excellence. For any substance in the world there is a reason why it exists and why it exists the way it exists. For Leibniz, it is self-evident that there is a close correlation between human sin and human suffering, between moral and natural evils. In the Book of Job human suffering is like behemoth, incomprehensible at the moment but not fully irrational, because God gives plenty of evidence that he created and sustains the world and consequently invites Job to trust him that the liberation is coming.
Emotionally Healthy Spirituality: It’s Impossible to Be Spiritually Mature, while Remaining Emotionally Immature
Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2017. 240pp.
Subversive Sabbath: The Surprising Power of Rest in a Nonstop World
Grand Rapids: Brazos Press, 2018. 256pp.
Das geheiligte Leben: Körper und Identität bei den Siebenten-Tags-Adventisten
Gottingen: V&R unipress, 2020. 241pp.
Towards an Adventist Version of Communio Ecclesiology: Remnant in Koinonia
Cham: Palgrave Macmillan, 2019. 314pp.
God’s Character and the Last Generation
Jirí Moskala and John C. Peckham, eds.
Nampa: Pacific Press, 2018. 286pp.
Lexham Geographic Commentary on the Gospels
Bellingham, Lexham, 2017. 583pp.
Saying No to God: A Radical Approach to Reading the Bible Faithfully
Matthew J. Korpman.
Quoir, 2019. 356pp.
God, Sky and Land: Genesis 1 as the Ancient Hebrews Heard It.
God, Land, and the Great Flood: Hearing the Story with 21st-Century Christian Ears.
God, Genesis and Good News: God, the Misreading of Genesis, and the Surprisingly Good News
Brian Bull and Fritz Guy.
Roseville, Adventist Forum, 2011/2017/2019. 190/211/201pp.