Posted by: adventlife | April 21, 2018

Surprise! The General Conference Responds to my Appeal for Reform

Genera Conference

Some of you might remember the appeal I made to our Adventist leaders not long ago by email entitled.

“Death Penalty for not Blowing the Trumpet in Zion?”

My appeal began with the following paragraphs:

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“I believe that there is a serious warning contained in the experience of Prophet Ezekiel for our Adventist evangelists, our Adventist leaders, and even our Adventist lay members as well.

The Lord warned Ezekiel that he had been assigned the role of spiritual watchmen for the people of Israel. His duty was similar to the duty of the sentry guarding the safety of a city. Those watchmen were expected to stay awake at night while the rest of the city dwellers were asleep and were ordered to sound the trumpet at the sight of approaching danger.

Our evangelists and leaders have a similar duty today. They are expected to be spiritually awake and sound the trumpet in the event of danger to the spiritual safety of people. Are our Adventist evangelists, our leaders and lay members fulfilling this sacred duty? …”

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In the event this does not refresh your memory, I suggest you click on the following Internet link and read the details of said appeal:

Link: https://adventlife.wordpress.com/2018/03/11/death-penalty-for-not-blowing-the-trumpet-in-zion-by-nic-samojluk/

Well, I got the surprise of my life when I received the following response from a representative of the General Conference. Here it is:

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“Dear Nic Samojluk:

I have been asked to respond to your question concerning abortion. As you know, “abortions for reasons of birth control, gender selection, or convenience are not condoned by the Church. Women, at times however, may face exceptional circumstances that present serious moral or medical dilemmas, such as significant threats to the pregnant woman’s life, serious jeopardy to her health, severe congenital defects carefully diagnosed in the fetus, and pregnancy resulting from rape or incest” (from guidelines approved and voted by the General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists Executive Committee at the Annual Council session in Silver Spring, Maryland, October 12, 1992).

That non-Adventist (and sometimes Adventist) doctors in our hospitals perform abortions for other reasons is regrettable, but this cannot be laid at the door of the Church. Your comparison with Ezekiel 3:17-21 and 33:1-6 does not fit because the church has blown the trumpet by clearly stating where we stand on this issue. You are obviously not happy with the guidelines, but would you rather have the fetus saved and the mother die in the process? I don’t think so. I respect your personal view on this issue, please respect the church’s position.

With kind regards and best wishes,

Gerhard Pfandl, Ph.D.
Associate Director (ret.)
Biblical Research Institute”

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I interpreted this communication as a willingness to dialogue with me over this issue. I now believe that I was wrong, because several weeks have gone by and I am still waiting for his reply. If you know Dr. Pfandl, please encourage him to continue his dialogue with me. Here is a copy of my response to him.

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“Gerhard Pfandl, Ph.D.
Associate Director (ret.)
Biblical Research Institute

Thank you for your reply to my email and thank you for citing a key paragraph from the Adventist guidelines on abortion, which I must have read and carefully studied probably more than 20 times already.

I noticed that you addressed only one of those exceptional circumstances alluded to in said document: “significant threats to the pregnant woman’s life.” I will therefore attempt to deal with the other exceptions.

But first, let me answer the following question you made: “but would you rather have the fetus saved and the mother die in the process?” My obvious answer is “NO.” Saving one life from a sure death when both lives cannot be saved is still pro-life. Now let me address the other exceptional circumstances:

“Serious jeopardy to her health.” You are probably aware that the woman’s health includes her mental health. Mental depression is common in women faced with an unwanted pregnancy. Mental depression is a temporary condition, while the death of the baby is permanent and irreversible. Can you cite a biblical text justifying killing an innocent human being because his/her presence results in mental depression in others?
Aren’t sometimes children the cause of the mental depression of their parents?

“Severe congenital defects.” Does the Bible justify the killing of human beings with physical or mental defects? If not, then why does the church make an exception in the case of the unborn?

“Pregnancy resulting from rape or incest” Does the Bible justify killing children for the sin of the parents? Can you cite a text from the Bible defending this? Besides, if we let the guilty rapist live, how can we justify punishing the innocent child? Is not this a miscarriage of justice?

Then you added the following: “That non-Adventist (and sometimes Adventist) doctors in our hospitals perform abortions for other reasons is regrettable, but this cannot be laid at the door of the Church.”

Would you offer shelter to a serial murderer in your home? If you do, would a judge declare you innocent of the crime? Since 1970, thousands of innocent unborn babies were killed in our Adventist hospitals and clinics. Our hands are dripping with the blood of said victims.

Let me share with you a video that explains this in a more detailed fashion. It deals with precisely our guidelines on abortion:

Exceptional Circumstances for Not returning Tithe _ GC & NAD Stewardship Department
Link: https://youtu.be/kg4zZcfEZLU

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Responses

  1. Your response is what I would ask as well. What IS the value of a human life once a baby has begun to form? The exceptions listed by Dr. Pfandl have not been weighed against this value. Does convenience outweigh human life? Does disability outweigh human life? Does the memory of rape outweigh human life? These are the proper T accounts in deciding for or against abortion.

    You also soundly laid to rest the strawman assertion of putting the life of the baby over that of the mother.

    May God continue to bless your ministry.

    • Thanks, Kevin, for you comments! I am glad we agree on this.


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