WHAT THE NEW THEOLOGY LEADS TO
THE DESPERATE REACH FOR HEAVEN
can I be saved?
is the great question of the ages. But, interestingly enough, it depends
on how much you want to be saved. It also depends on what you want to be
people do not want to be saved from sin. What they really want is to
remain in their sins, be able to excuse them as acceptable, and go to
heaven at some time after death.
How I can be saved? hinges on What do I want to do with my
sins? Many people do not like their past sins, but most want to be able
to keep indulging them in the future.
most people, How can I be saved? really means How can I get to
heaven, pretty much as I am?
But there are those who genuinely want to be saved from sin. They want deliverance. They want to separate from the hateful thing. They want purity of heart. They want godliness. They want to be like God, sweet, kindly, clean.
those people, there is an entrance to heaven!
is simply a matter of coming to Jesus in repentance for the past, giving
Him the habits, attitudes, and lifeand dedicating to Him ones life.
It is arising from ones knees and determining, in the strength of
Christ, to press onward in the consecrated way.
such people, a whole new life begins; a life not free from troubles and
trials, but a happy life nonetheless.
walk along the narrow way leads along a path which erelong ends at the
city of God.
people honor the sacrifice Christ made on Calvary. They respect His
ministry in the Sanctuary above. Instead of playing with theological word
games (and hoping God will be fooled by them), the sincere want to be
there are those who do not wish to separate from their sins. They love
them too much! Appetite, passions, temper, lusts. It is all too important
to lose. The thought of such a sacrifice seems too much for them.
are such folk to do? They inquire, What must I do to be saved? What
they are really asking is, How can I get to heaven in my sins? Such
folk are desperate, and they are willing to accept any theology of
desperation which seems to answer their need.
One such theology of desperation comes under several different names: humanism, agnosticism, evolutionism. But it is all the same: It is atheism, a pretense that there is no God.
somehow such folk can prove to themselves, despite overwhelming evidence
to the contrary, that there is no God, then they imagine they will never
be judged for their sins, and can more peacefully enjoy them in this life.
is a difficult religion to maintain (and it is a religious belief; make no
mistake), since it requires denying such a powerful display of evidence
throughout all of nature. The fool hath said in his heart, there is no
God. Well, some are willing to be fools, if they can enjoy their sins
for a time.
Then there is the theology of God does not kill the wicked. We find this among the ancient Egyptians, in Hinduism, and many pagan religions. It is well to appease the gods, but they will not bother you much after deathregardless of what you do in this present life. There will be no punishment for sins.
Then there is the theology of works. Placate the gods with gifts, make long pilgrimages, climb stairs on ones knees. We find this religion throughout the native superstitions of the worldfrom Africa to India, from China to South America. Among the churches of so-called Christendom, Roman and Greek Catholicism are excellent examples.
enough, in works religions there may be devotion for objects and statues,
but there is little closeness to ones Saviour. Whether it be Hinduism,
Catholicism, or Anglicanism, we have here religious forms and ceremonies,
and little else.
Then there is the theology of acceptance-alone. All you need do is accept God, and you will be saved. Well, in some respects, this is the easiest of all. No efforts to evade Gods existence, no struggles to please Him. Just accept that He exists and intends to save you somehow. Some kind of magic will take place, just before eternal life begins for you, and all your sinful loves will vanish. All you need do is accept Jesus as your Saviour; after that you can do just as you please. It really doesn't matter, for you will be saved anyway.
A close brother to
saved by acceptance is already saved. According to this
theme, you were saved at the cross. The theologians call it a finished
some say that acceptance may be necessary, the underlying theme is that
all the world was saved at the cross, and everyone will be saved except
those who try too hard to avoid it. It is easy to be saved, hard to be
lost, such folk declare. Obviously, if your salvation was finished at
the cross, then you do not need to even accept it. Sequiera calls it
Can you see at
this point where we are headed?
The final step is Universalism. Worldlings and near-atheists love this one. In fact, it has appeal to most everyone, for it touches the deepest chords of the unsanctified heart: Everyone, yes everyone, will finally be saved!
need neither the Bible, nor Calvary, nor the atonement. You do not need to
resist sin; in fact, you can enjoy it to the full. You can even go around
murdering people. For everyone will be saved! This is the new theology,
expressed a little more openly.
is clear that this view is almost identical to many of the theologies,
is also clear that this view is totally pagan. There is not a bit of Bible
or Christianity in it. It is a religion that Adolf Hitler could love.
Hindus, Buddhists, animists, Taoists, Confucianists, Unitarians, and many
Christians embrace it.
In the January-April issue of Mike Clute's periodical, Gods Last Call, he quotes a letter from one of his supporters, and then comments on it. The letter and Mikes approval reveals that Mike has turned his back on Gods Word and has gone over to Universalism!
this is understandable. For years, Mike taught that God will never kill
the incorrigibly wicked (we all agree He never hurts or slays the innocent
or righteous). Mikes view is not supported by Scripture. (See our
42-page in-depth tractbook, The
Terrible Storm, which thoroughly refutes this error in detail, and
gives dozens of Bible and Spirit of Prophecy quotations.)
when a person leaves the Bible and Spirit of Prophecy, he is ready for
anything. Any new idea can come along and, if he feels it is nice, he is
likely to accept it.
In this particular issue of Mikes paper, these are the points brought out: (1) Satan produces the final (hell) fire. (2) It is a symbolic fire, and not real. (3) It will purify all the sinners, for they will burn in this imaginary fire until they are purified of sin.
Then they will be clean, pure in heart, with no traces of sin and will
be welcomed into the city of God, there to live through eternal ages! (5)
All the wicked will be saved, and that includes all the evil angels as
well as Satan himself! (The devil accomplished a lot by getting that fire
When Satan, the last one to have his sins burned out, is welcomed through
the gates, he will be reinstated as the leading angel and will again lead
the choirs of heaven as the honored, respected leader of the angels. All
the redeemed will respect Satan more than any other angel, for he is once
again the leading angel.
is the hellish teaching which Mike Clute now accepts. He freely admits
that the name of this terrible error is Universalism.
How can imaginary
fire get rid of sin? How can Satan produce flames which will get rid of
his sins, or anyone else's? How can anything good come out of a being so
utterly bad? Yet, according to this heathen idea, the devil is more worthy
of worship than the Father or the Son; for he will have saved more sinners
than the Godhead! The efforts of the Holy Spirit, working through good
angels and the loyal on earth, accomplished far less than Satan did with
his imaginary fire!
is truly a theology of final desperation.
Beware of those who urge upon you new light which is not in the Bible and Spirit of Prophecy! Erelong, they will lead you all the way out! I guarantee it: The only way you can avoid being captured eventually by error, is to rigorously stay with the plain words of the Bible and Spirit of Prophecy.
Let us, for a moment, compare these views:
Bible, Spirit of Prophecy, and historic Adventism teaches
that you will be saved by Christ's merits, which will enable you to have
a living faith which works.
Protestantism teaches that
you will saved because of your faith, regardless of your actions.
teaches that you will be saved
regardless of your belief or actions. It is, thus, only a step beyond
modern Christian (new theology) theory.
modern Protestantism (which, in our church, is called the new
theology) has almost the same teaching that Universalism has.
Why is there such a desperate search for some type of foolish notion which will promise heaven to those clinging to sin? The answer is the great concern to somehow obtain assurance.
Christians need not concern themselves with worries about assurance, for
they are walking hand-in-hand with Christ throughout the day. They love
Him with all the heart, and gladly serve Him and obey the commands given
in His Word. They have a full Christian experience and are at peace with
God. Ask a genuine Christian if he has assurance, and his eyes will
twinkle. He has Jesus, and that is better than a feeling.
those who want the saved-in-sin theories to give them assurance, will
always lack assurance. They are convicted, by the Holy Spirit, that they
are still in their sins and are therefore out of Christ.
against the pricks of conscience, as Saul did, they cry out for the peace
of heart they hope to find in a theology of hoped-for assurance.
is the truth about assurance:
Adventism: You have
assurance in (not about but in) Jesus. You have assurance because you are
in Jesus, as the branch is to the parent stock of the vine; closely
connected with Him, moment by moment. A living experience is yours, which
transcends nominal assurance.
Protestantism: You have
assurance because you think you can be saved while remaining in your sins.
But the nagging doubt persists: Could the theory be wrong, since that
is my only basis of assurance?
You have assurance because you think you can be saved while remaining in
your sins. But once again, as much as you may try to believe it, the
theory can bring you little real assurance.
we analyze it, we find that modern Protestantism (the new theology) is
similar in so many ways to Universalism!
Here is what the Spirit of Prophecy says about Universalism:
the funeral of an irreligious young man, who had been killed instantly by
an accident, a Universalist minister . . [taught that] the salvation of
heaven depends upon nothing which we can do in this life; neither upon a
present change of heart, nor upon present belief, or a present profession
of religion. Great Controversy, 537, 538.
Protestantism (the new theology) and Universalism is about the same in
that both teach the same outcome: salvation . . depends upon nothing
which we can do in this life.
In reality, these
false religions do not have assurance, but carnal security.
That is the way it is with all the false religions in the
world, including the works religions! Just stay in your sins, and just
believe that it will all turn out all right.
After this life, you will return to live in sin all over again.
After this life, you will inevitably burn for a time in purgatory, and
that fire will burn out your sins and make you clean. (Sounds like Clute.)
After this life, all your sins will be magically taken away and you will
be taken to heaven.
just go ahead and stay in your sins; all is well. You are locked into them
(the Catholic teaching of Original Sin, accepted by modern Protestantism)
and cannot escape till the moment of death or translation.
there we have it: variations on the theme of providing the sinner with
carnal security. Commenting on Universalism and kindred ideas, we are
is thus [by such teachings] that doubters, unbelievers, and skeptics turn
the truth into a lie. And multitudes have been deceived by their sophistry
and rocked to sleep in the cradle of carnal security.Great
the truth is far different.
has given in His Word decisive evidence that He will punish the
transgressors of His law. Those who flatter themselves that He is too
merciful to execute justice upon the sinner, have only to look to the
cross of Calvary. The death of the spotless Son of God testifies that
the wages of sin is death, that every violation of Gods law must
receive its just retribution. Great Controversy, 539-540.
is because of such clear statements of truth, as in the above paragraph,
that there is a studied war on the Spirit of Prophecy by so many in our
denomination. If Gods Word is right, then we need to flee to God and
cooperate with Him in getting rid of sin from our lives! But many do not
want to do that. They prefer a theology of desperation instead. War on the
reprover, instead of on the sin.
That which carnal-minded men and women want is to be able to forget that God has justice. They extol His mercy and grace, but they push the justice back into the shade. They do not want it to be considered.
extreme which Satan has led the people to adopt is entirely to overlook
the justice of God, and the threatenings in His Word, and to represent Him
as being all mercy, so that no one will perish, but that all, both saint
and sinner, will at last be saved in His kingdom.Early Writings,
The only place you will find the truth is in Gods Word. The teaching, that God will punish and blot out the hopelessly impenitent, is to be found all through the Bible and Spirit of Prophecy.
is a summary overview, in a few paragraphs:
Let us consider
what the Bible teaches further concerning the ungodly and unrepentant,
whom the Universalist places in heaven as holy, happy angels . . We must resist and overcome sin . . No
fornicator, nor unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolator, hath
any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God. (Ephesians 5:5, ARV)
has given to men a declaration of His character and of His method of
dealing with sin . . All the wicked will He destroy. The
transgressors shall be destroyed together: the end of wicked shall be cut
off. (Psalms 145-20; 37:38). The power and authority of the divine
government will be employed to put down rebellion; yet all the
manifestations of retributive justice will be perfectly consistent with
the character of God as a merciful, long-suffering, benevolent being.
does not force the will or judgment of any. He takes no pleasure in a
slavish obedience . . The principles of the divine government are in
perfect harmony with the Saviours precept, Love your enemies. God
executes justice upon the wicked, for the good of the universe, and even
for the good of those upon whom His judgments are visited. He would make
them happy if He could do so in accordance with the laws of His government
and the justice of His character. He surrounds them with the tokens of His
love, He grants them a knowledge of His law, and follows them with the
offers of His mercy; but they despise His love, make void His law, and
reject His mercy. While constantly receiving His gifts, they dishonor the
Giver; they hate God because they know that He abhors their sins. The Lord
bears long with their perversity; but the decisive hour will come at last,
when their destiny is to be decided. Will He then chain these rebels to
His side? Will He force them to do His will?
who have chosen Satan as their leader and have been controlled by his
power are not prepared to enter the presence of God. Pride, deception,
licentiousness, cruelty, have become fixed in their characters. Can they
enter heaven to dwell forever with those whom they despised and hated on
earth? Truth will never be agreeable to a liar; meekness will not satisfy
self-esteem and pride; purity is not acceptable to the corrupt;
disinterested love does not appear attractive to the selfish. What source
of enjoyment could heaven offer to those who are wholly absorbed in
earthly and selfish interests?
those whose lives have been spent in rebellion against God be suddenly
transported to heaven and witness the high, the holy state of perfection
that ever exists there, every soul filled with love, every countenance
beaming with joy, enrapturing music in melodious strains rising in honor
of God and the Lamb, and ceaseless streams of light flowing upon the
redeemed from the face of Him who sitteth upon the throne, could those
whose hearts are filled with hatred of God, of truth and holiness, mingle
with the heavenly throng and join their songs of praise? Could they endure
the glory of God and the Lamb! No, no; years of probation were granted
them, that they might form characters for heaven; but they have never
trained the mind to love purity; they have never learned the language of
heaven, and now it is too late. A life of rebellion against God has
unfitted them for heaven. Its purity, holiness, and peace would be torture
to them; the glory of God would be a consuming fire. They would long to
flee from that holy place. They would welcome destruction, that they might
be hidden from the face of Him who died to redeem them. The destiny of the
wicked is fixed by their own choice. Their exclusion from heaven is
voluntary with themselves, and just and merciful on the part of God.
the waters of the Flood, the fires of the great day declare Gods
verdict that the wicked are incurable. They have no disposition to submit
to divine authority. Their will has been exercised in revolt; and when
life is ended, it is too late to turn the current of their thoughts in the
opposite direction, too late to turn from transgression to obedience, from
hatred to love. Great Controversy, 540-543.
In the above
passage, did you catch two key words? One was choice and the other
is now, not later, that we make our choice. There is no second chance
later on. There is none at the Second Coming, and none in the fire beyond.
is now that we are in our probationary time. You will notice that the
theorists have little to say about the close of probation. Most
world religions never mention it; Protestant theologians tell us it
occurred at Calvary, and we will never face it.
that is what it is. Eat, drink, and be merry, for tomorrow we go to