Fundamentalist Adventists Create Social Networking Website

I recently received an unsolicited email from somebody touting a new website, adventplanet.com. This is supposed to be a social networking site in the like of Facebook and MySpace, aimed at only Seventh-day Adventists. On the face of it a good idea, but the more I read about it, the worse the taste in my mouth got.

The footer of the website states: “Adventplanet.com is the only website exclusively for Seventh-day Adventists.” Ok—another attempt at isolating ourselves from the world. When is that strategy ever going to win people for Christ? Haven’t we learned anything yet?

The website goes on to shout (using CAPITALS) a midnight cry against other websites, promoting itself as the only safe and reliable site for Adventists. Playing on fear always works.

“THESE ARE THE THINGS YOU SHOULD CHECK BEFORE JOINING A WEBSITE THAT SAYS ITS FOR ADVENTISTS!” Which roughly translates to: “These are our hobby-horses.” There are five points—I will comment on them individually.

1. Is The Website I Am Applying For Run Or Owned By Adventists?

Fair enough. A clear statement of ownership is good on any website.

2. Does The Site List The Site List The 28 Fundamentals Of The Seventh-Day Adventist Church

Why on earth should it? They are listed on www.adventist.org, if anyone is interested, and already receive way more attention than what is healthy, and (I believe) was intended when they were introduced in 1980.

3. Does The Website Mention The Lords Tithe

Again: why exactly should one minor belief be singled out as important in this regard? Makes no sense.

4. Does The Website Check That It’s Members Are Really Adventist?
“Adventplanet.com asks you for a one off $50 US Dollar membership sign up fee. Part of the fee is used to contact your Adventist church to confirm not just your membership but that you are in good and regular standing.”

This is outrageous. The whole concept ‘good and regular standing’ is a thing that should be kept in the past. The church is a place for sinners, not perfect people. Oh, you disagree? I take it, then, that you’re perfect? Try reading John 8.

5. Does The Website Include Smoking And Drinking In Its Search?

Again a disproportionate focus on a single issue. It is well-established that a large proportion of Seventh-day Adventists have a more accepting view of alcohol than the official party line. But it is still, sadly, a taboo in most circles (read my earlier post on this).

As long as I can remember people I know have been fighting (successfully) to change the conception that the Seventh-day Adventist is exclusive and secterian. Which I still hope and believe it is not. But some of its members sadly often do demonstrate such traits. I believe that Christians are called to be a force of good in this world, building bridges, not walls.

Of course, people may build whatever websites they want, as long as it’s legal. But adventplanet.com also states that it is their aim to “be the first Seventh-Day Adventist community website to be endorsed by the General Conference.” I certainly hope it will not come to this.

I will stick with Facebook and MySpace, and urge you to do the same.

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Author: Kenneth Mollerup Birch

Living north of Copenhagen, Denmark. MA in Information Science. Interests include communication, internet, sociology, language, politics, religion, theology, travel, music, and food.

28 thoughts on “Fundamentalist Adventists Create Social Networking Website”

  1. Lyder som en side der prøver at udnytte adventister. Er det i det hele taget lovligt at undersøge om man er medlem af adventistsamfundet, er den slags oplysninger ikke fortrolige?

  2. AAAAAAAAAAAAAAARRRGH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! *Grrrr* >8-[ #¤%!

    btw…
    Funny that I have to use a dictionary to read your blog. (argh!) (You don’t see me writing in German now do you… well do you… punk)

    unsolicited. ajd uopfordret; som man ikke har anmodet om.
    tout. vb kapre kunder; reklamere for (, prøve at sælge) ved pågående metoder; udråbe vidt og bredt.
    I will stick with Facebook and MySpace, and urge you to do the same. sb product placement.
    punk. sb actor in famous movie.

  3. @Andreas: Yes, I hadn’t even thought of the whole privacy thing. At least in Denmark, it is definetly not legal to disclose information about membership and ‘standing’ to third parts.

    @Niels: Funny, Katrine is always complaining about the same thing. If you did, in fact, choose to write in German I would cherish the opportunity to practice my German skills (or so I would have you think). And yeah, sorry about the product placement – they’re not even paying me 🙂

  4. Det ville i hvert fald blive overrasket hvis oplysninger vedr. mit medlemsskab kunne opnås ved en opringning til hovedkontoret. Folk er blevet henrettet fordi de har tilhørt en bestemt religion, bare tænkt på jøderne. Jeg ved godt at det ikke ville være svært at finde oplysninger om mine religøse overbevisning, en søgning på google ville hurtigt afsløre mig, men selve princippet i at nogen overgiver oplysninger om en selv til nogen man eller de ikke kender, virker utrolig krænkende.

    Er det forøvrigt en krav at man skal godkende alle de 28 trospunkter for at blive døbt adventist? For hvis det ikke er, sortere de jo de adventister der ikke tror på dem alle fra.

    (Du må undskylde jeg skriver på dansk, det virker alt for unaturligt at kommunikere på engelsk med dig, selvom (modsat tvesok) det underligt nok ikke virker unaturlig den anden vej)

  5. (Kommer nok snart til at fortryde, jeg ikke har blogget noget mere på engelsk..)

    For the record,

    10 Later Jesus was having dinner at Matthew’s house. Many tax collectors and “sinners” came. They ate with Jesus and his disciples.

    11 The Pharisees saw this. So they asked the disciples, “Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and ‘sinners’?”

    12 Jesus heard that. So he said, “Those who are healthy don’t need a doctor. Sick people do. 13 Go and learn what this means, ‘I want mercy and not sacrifice.’—(Hosea 6:6) I have not come to get those who think they are right with God to follow me. I have come to get sinners to follow me.”

    (Matthew 9)

  6. @Andreas: You ask if accepting the 28 Fundamentals is a prerequisite for baptism. This is quite a large debate. Some will, obviously, have it that you cannot in be a ‘real’ Adventist if you don’t personally believe in them all. I see it rather as a matter of accepting the presence of the 28 and being somewhat loyal to the official party line, but not necessarily personally believing every word. I know many will agree with me, and others vehemently oppose me in this.

    (You are welcome to write in Danish–and I hope you will accept me answering in English, as a courtesy to any International readers.)

    @Lars: Thank you for bringing these verses to our attention.

    @Melody: Sorry if I shocked you 🙂 but I know you’ve seen worse before *sigh*

  7. Skrev lige en mail til dem med nogle spørgsmål, og her er deres svar:

    How we can guarantee whether people are adventists is simple. We ask the one person who would know whether you are or not. Your pastor. How we do this is confidential and our procedure for verifying the member is the actual member is also confidential.

    Og hvorfor de 28 trospunkter er et krav når det ikke er det når man bliver dødt (jeg skulle i hvert fald ikke sige ja til dem da jeg blev døbt):

    Well I’m Puzzled that you are asking this question especially since this is an Adventist website and If you have problems concurring with the beliefs then you may be in the wrong place. That is why we give everyone the option of concurring or walking away

  8. (Andreas is quoting email answers to him from the website.)

    “The one person who would know… your pastor.” Well, I don’t share this view of the clergy, putting a pastor on a piedestal like that. Only God and yourself know what your thoughts are and where your loyalty lies. Furthermore, stating confidentiality strikes me as a little weird. I would consider it a serious breach of confidentiality if a pastor were to disclose information about his members to a third party.

    “This is an Adventist website…” I don’t have a problem calling these guys Adventist. But the question of what makes one cannot be answered as easily as just claiming the 28. There’s much more to the isssue of Adventist identity than that.

  9. I share your reservations about this site. We should encourage inclusion…not exclusion, whether in our church services or in our social interactions. We like to say that the church is not a private club for the saints, but that’s the impression this site leaves. As it stands, however, it may provide some untainted social networking for the more legalistic among us.

  10. Just a small point but the Association of Adventist forums is endorsed by the General Conference and it has online forums on its website. Not the same but similar enough. Also some of the sevy facebook groups are so weird I left them 😉

    Good post!

  11. @Johnny: Which is fine–I am happy that the church has enough width to include both AAF and AdventistsAffirm. But I’m a little hesitant about the whole concept of GC endorsement. Perhaps it’s my Scandinavian skepticism of authorities or my staunch belief in the power of laity.

  12. Hi Kenneth. Thank-you for bringing this to my attention. I read the article with a lot of interest as anything to do with my church fascinates me and I have some thoughts on this of my own. I couldn’t read some of the comments as they were in another language. Like with everything I hear I like to analyse investigate and digest. Here are my conclusions. I think the idea is great because I think this is something the church should have done a long time ago themselves. Its high time we did have a place for ourselves online The Official website is not really for meeting other Adventists. There is the comment about inclusion but face book and myspace as you said are already there for that. Plus the doors of our Adventist churches are open to the public but I think this site is more about Adventist members developing a stronger relationship with each other (something I like the thought of) and lets face it, anyone who has been on the net no matter what social site cant escape the porn so to that end I welcome this site. I also happen to agree that there are too many sites that use the words Christian or adventist to lure people in without immediate evidence of their affiliation. At least this site on the surface holds nothing back in that regard.

    As an Adventist. I go to church near enough every week. Does that make me perfect? Of course not but it does set a benchmark So I suppose im a regular. To asses eligibility of this website, the creators seem to have set there criteria as, are you in good and regular standing?. I dont think they are saying whether you are perfect they are asking do you go to church regularly. Its two diametrically different things.

    The headline Adventist fundamentalists was very catching and made me realise that though in my early twentys I must be one as I don’t believe in drinking or smoking. Does that make me fundamentalist?. Alcohol is a poison by the way so I whole heartedly think that the heavenly father would not wish for us to poison ourselves with a little wine now and then and heaven forbid smoking. The bit about the fundamentals I saw on the register form too. Like most forms I wouldnt read it (who reads that 100 page myspace form! :-)) but I went back and look at it and all it is the fundamentals of the church I go to. It wasn’t a big deal for me really. Interestingly, What I did notice on the form was this
    Section 1 – for church members
    # I confirm that I am a seventh-day adventist church member in good and regular standing.
    # I understand that my church will be contacted to confirm the above.

    Im no legal expert but isn’t this an authorisation to contact our churches. So its not violating privacy laws if we allow it.

    Matthew 7:16 says
    Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?.

    Its too early to tell their works but lets look at the positives. It is something fresh and new for Adventists. What is worth investigating however is whether these guys are really Adventist. What church they go to etc. Wouldnt it be ironic if they werent!. Im going to reserve judgement till I have seen a full feedback on the site and until I see its fruits. If it is tbe genuine article it might be worth me signing up.

    May the Lord bless you and keep you.

    Kris

  13. Lots of thoughts on this one, but let me stick to one fact for now:

    The “click to accept these terms” is not, under Danish law, sufficiently explicit consent for the church to disclose membership information. No church employee in the Danish Union may give this information without written (as in physically signed on a piece of paper) consent from the individual in question.

    As promised, I will leave my general thoughts about the site for another day. Rule #1: Never write when you are upset 😉

  14. I think there are lots of assumptions being made by all of us here. None of us know the registration procedure and who knows how they get membership information. If I was applying to the site, I would expect them to contact my pastor, or for me to contact my pastor to tell him the data request is coming and authorise him to release the information. (whichever way they do this). I trust my pastor not to confirm or deny that I even exist before he has spoken to me! :-). If I have indeed requested to join the site, I would then authorise him to confirm the request. This is the best and only way of doing this in my opinion.

    I once again state that in principle this site seems like a good thing. Searching for Adventist friends and even a soulmate who is nearby could be made easier by something like this. Let us also not forget that these folk seem to be Adventists so before we put them down for trying to do something good (in my opinion) for our church, , how about we do as we would in our own churches, contact them ask them who they are, what its all about and give them suggestions and feedback. If they are indeed of our family, surely they will welcome feedback from us their SDA siblings. I know that if it was me I wouldn’t like my own to criticise and comment on me openly without having contacted me first. I would much rather you pull me aside and say this is what we like, this is what we dont like, whats this about?.

    Has anyone signed up yet?, how long has it been running?. As I said im going to reserve judgement until I know more. I will also ask my pastor about it.

  15. What a stir this post is causing 🙂

    Thank you for your comments, Kris, you raise some interesting issues.

    I do concur that an internal community site for SDA church members may be a good thing. But I would prefer it, then, if it was actually an official site. And conditions for membership should be… membership, not ‘holiness’.

    Regarding benchmarking, I don’t think that the intent is necessarily a lean towards perfectionism. But the whole idea is, imho, a dangerous road, for who gets to set the criteria for benchmarking?

    And fundamenalism, oh yes. I will gladly admit that I chose the word to make a statement 🙂 Fundamentalism doesn’t always have to be a bad thing, of course. Some would call me one just for my belief in Creation. But no, I would not call you a fundamentalist for chosing to neither drink nor smoke. These are good choices. But I do not condone imposing that choice on others, and implying that people who have made other choices are necessarily bad Christians. That, to me, is somewhat fundamentalist. But of course, that’s just my opinion.

  16. Some interesting points Kenneth. Its a difficult one. you have to ask yourself whether someone that goes to church once a year can be really called a church goer or a committed Adventist. Im not saying that by going to church every week im more holy or a better Christian far from it. What it is for me is that I know I am a sinner and I need to approach the throne of grace frequently to ask for forgiveness and help through this cruel life. The church is my hospital and I go there for treatment along with other sinners. Other people are also ill but some choose not to go to the hospital even though fully knowing where and what the hospital is. That is of course their choice. Being a church regular does not equate to greater church holiness and I cant see anything on that site that says that either. We can agree to disagree on the health issue as I said alcohol is a poison and I cant see Jesus ever wanting us to consume even a little amount of poison. Maybe call me selfish but I am looking for a life partner. I do want someone who is Adventist and goes to church regularly. (Unequally yoked etc?) Having now read the site blurb properly I can see that the site wants people in good and regular standing which I don’t think is a bad thing as that is what I am. Not a better Christian or more holy just a regular sinner in need of regular treatment looking for people of the same mindset that enjoy regular treatment at the throne of grace too. Its a common ground that can be built on. Church is a wonderful place. Oh to have a partner that feels the same too. Ive had my fair share of dead end relationships. The fact that they want GC endorsement must be a good thing surely as this is a tall order but I feel you may have contradicted yourself a bit Kenneth as you say you wish it was an official site but earlier you stated “I’m a little hesitant about the whole concept of GC endorsement. Perhaps it’s my Scandinavian skepticism of authorities or my staunch belief in the power of laity” 🙂 Also sites like myspace have been around for years but there has not been 1 (that I know off,) Christian social networking site. . Also they do raise a valid point what of all these other sites just putting the word Christian or adventist at the start?Arent they worse?.. Next there will be Chistian or Adventist nightclubs (If there arent already lol). I still say we should speak to these people and see what they are about. I might email them tonight. Ive sent my pastor a text message about it too so all will be brought to light soon!

  17. I admit I may be contradicting myself on the issue of laity. I think what I mean is that either it’s an official site or it’s not. If it’s grass-roots, fine by me, but don’t do the whole pastor-network and GC recognition. That could perhaps be done if the Church was behind it, but this is obviously a private initiative.

    And that, perhaps is my main issue with the site. It may have its merits for certain people as a grass-roots site. But to me, it still seems like they’re imposing their views of ‘proper’ Christianity on the rest of us. That I dislike–I find it so simplistic.

    Let me provoke you a bit, Kris–so what if there were Christian nightclubs. Why would that be bad? 🙂

  18. Hi Kenneth. I sent them an email. It was quite an extensive one but I received a quick response and they seemed very nice. They said they welcomed all questions and feedback from all their Adventist brethren and because of the sheer number of questions I had they would give a full response very shortly. They also said I could speak to them Via msn if I wanted but because I want to share their responses with you, I requested an email feedback. So as soon as I know I will let you know! :-). My pastor said there was much talk about it in pastor circles a lot of it positive as he received an email about it too. It turns out that they are indeed bonafide Adventists from somewhere called Stratford Church In England. I googled it already 🙂 the church does exist. Learning more about this every day, I am a lot more positive about it. The fact that my pastor knows about it is a good thing too and he has already contacted the conference for an initial opinion on what these guys are doing so should hear back soon. I think you are being a bit hard on these guys. If they weren’t going for the whole pastor network and GC recognition, you would be criticizing them for not going for church recognition and how can the church be behind something they don’t know about yet, the same as how can you or I be behind something we don’t know about so I think that is what these guys are trying to do. If we are going to analyse these guys, I also think we should analyse all the would be Adventist meeting/dating sites. I would be very interested to know just how many are actually really Adventist. It would make for good reading. This however is sounding more and more like something we can use I think. I also don’t think there is anything wrong with private initiative. Private initiative catalyses growth and technology. Without private initiative there would not be the googles or for that matter the myspaces. I must admit that your headline did also scare me a bit Adventist fundamentalists!. its because fundamentalist has become a word synonymous with terror and I dont know whether it was your intention to use it that way but after so many sects being mistakenly and very annoyingly associated with us, I thought a new one had started. To be a fundamentalist for the teachings of Christ, that’s what I want and strive to be. As a side thought, do your really think that by asking applicants to be in good and regular standing that they are imposing views of proper Christianity on others?. To impose something you need to have some degree of authority over the person you wish to impose on. Secondly I keep saying it! 🙂 Good and regular standing does not equate to better christian, proper christianity or someone who is further down the path of their walk with Jesus. It just means someone who goes to church regularly or is at least known by the local flock. Its a free world and they are not imposing that we join. Its not even an exclusive club. There are plenty of places where Adventists (Church going or not) can meet online. But It is of comfort knowing that in principle, I am able to join a site where background checks have been done on all members (what a great idea for a commercial site! 🙂 )and they at least know what the inside of a church building looks like and I know exactly which church building that is.. I think the best thing to do like with anything is ask questions.

    With Regard to Christian nightclubs. Nightclubs I believe are predisposed to be an environment that creates a sexually charged atmosphere. The subtle lighting etc. The same way a casino room is predisposed to be an environment that pumps money out of its patrons. The bright lights, the odour manipulation, not a clock anywhere so patrons don’t look at the time. The unbelievably beautiful waitresses and incredibly handsome men scattered around the building You get the Idea :-). There are many subjects and arguments in itself that this question would bring up and might be worth a full discussion in your blogs. What would you propose as the music policy of such a club, would you have the seductive lighting? Would you play slow songs during the night for Christians to slow dance to?. Thanking of Jesus whilst I am slow dancing with someone is a thought that brings much confusion to my mind as slow dancing invariably brings thoughts of anything but the cross. But I would be interested in your proposal for a Christian night club Perhaps you can apply for church funding to open it! 🙂

    Blessings my Brother in Christ

    Kris

  19. I have never implied that these people are not Adventists. I do, however, stand by my previous comments.

    The nightclub idea was, of course, a provocation, and I do share some of your observations. You would most likely not be in the target group for such a venture, and I probably wouldn’t, either. But does that mean that it couldn’t have a valid purpose? Thinking out of the box can be healthy, even though it may seem wrong at first, to some people.

  20. HI Kenneth. Once again you raise a valid point. Thinking out of the box is very healthy as you perfectly put it even though it maybe wrong at first to some people. But by using the same barometer you have to admit that an Adventist meeting site that was stated and is now evidently run by Adventists is totally out of the box thinking as no one who is Adventist (it seems) has chosen to do something like this till now. You have made it somewhat clear by urging people to steer clear of it that its a wrong thing. If you remember my first post regarding this subject I said “Like with everything I hear I like to analyse investigate and digest”, and now having weighed up the Evidence I can give you my thoughts.

    There is no doubt that as my brother in Christ, you are very skilled writer. The language you use and the method you use to deploy the effects of that language are very powerful. I do however feel that investigative journalism not just journalism was required here and here are my reasons why.

    1: Lets talk about the headline you used. Fundamentalist Adventists Create Social Networking Website. Lets look at the word fundamentalist. Correct me if I am wrong but it was your intention to use this word to negative effect. However if we look at our friend Wiki. It says Christian fundamentalists see the Bible (both the Old Testament and the New Testament) as infallible and historically accurate. Something I believe totally dont you? but for the avoidance of doubt let us go to two other online sources.

    First Websters Dictionary.
    1 a often capitalized : a movement in 20th century Protestantism emphasizing the literally interpreted Bible as fundamental to Christian life and teaching b : the beliefs of this movement c : adherence to such beliefs

    Then dictionary.com which I believe gives the best analysis
    1. (sometimes initial capital letter) a movement in American Protestantism that arose in the early part of the 20th century in reaction to modernism and that stresses the infallibility of the Bible not only in matters of faith and morals but also as a literal historical record, holding as essential to Christian faith belief in such doctrines as the creation of the world, the virgin birth, physical resurrection, atonement by the sacrificial death of Christ, and the Second Coming.

    Don’t know about you but that sealed it for me. So are you saying that you do not recognise the infallibility of the Bible not only in matters of faith and morals but also as a literal historical record, holding as essential to Christian faith belief in such doctrines as the creation of the world, the virgin birth, physical resurrection, atonement by the sacrificial death of Christ, and the Second Coming? If you are saying you dont then you used the word correctly in the negative deployment of it. If however you do believe in the above then maybe it would have been more correct to open the dialogue mentioning that you are a fundamentalist yourself as it will have diffused the negative connotations that this statement immediately engendered.

    2. You firstly state you are hesitant about the whole concept of GC endorsement, Scandinavian skepticism of authorities or your staunch belief in the power of laity.. You then later say you would prefer it, then, if it was actually an official site. I do find this contradicting and confusing.

    3: I agree that the headline Adventplanet.com is the only website exclusively for Seventh-day Adventists projects (Like your headline) the incorrect image. A more accurate statement may have been, the first social networking website for Adventists. But if you read beyond the statement they do define their purpose.

    The continuing campaign to help others is important but we need get to know our fellow brethren too. We invite all Seventh-day Adventists and Seventh-day Adventist Churches to sign up. Our aim is not only to be the biggest Seventh-Day Adventist community online but to be the first Seventh-Day Adventist community website to be endorsed by the General Conference. All prospective members are thoroughly vetted to confirm they are in good and regular standing within their local Seventh Day Adventist Church and continued membership to this site is conditional upon that point. God Bless and see you on the inside!

    From this I gather that they are all for seeking the lost but that is not their purpose. They are here to provide an avenue to get to know our fellow brethren better. Something that I welcome. Do you not welcome it?.

    4: Does The Site List The Site List The 28 Fundamentals Of The Seventh-Day Adventist Church/lords tithe

    Your point here I have to disagree with. Seeing this on a website actually assured me. Many meeting websites that use the words Christian or Sda, use it in the title alone and dont discuss our church any further. isn’t a website a perfect place to at least go into somewhat what we believe? Which also brings me a side thought. I had a look yesterday and they had added a sermon to the front page which I listened to and thought was good so anyone who is not Adventist who visited the site would also get to listen to it so I believe that by leaving things like this on the site for everyone to listen to they are doing their bit too just like you are with your blog :-).

    5: Does the site check whether your Adventist? I think you have to concede the point that you were incorrect on this one. The term regular standing I have already discussed and defined correctly and it has nothing to do with how holy or how holy you think you are.

    6.Smoking and drinking we have already covered. Our own discussion on drinking aside, I too believe a search for people that smoke is not a relevant thing for a website that claims Adventism. By the way do you acknowledge that Alcohol is indeed a poison and if so whether you agree that our heavenly father would want us to partake in even a little poison.

    7:I will stick with Facebook and MySpace, and urge you to do the same.

    This I believe is where my investigative journalism point comes in. You have drawn this conclusion without even looking at what’s going on inside which I do not believe is fair. It would be like doing a review about a car without not having even driven it. There is no doubt you are a gifted writer (and probably speaker) but being armed with facts rather than suppositions is always better. Especially as they seem to be our own people. To borrow from one of my earlier posts. Before declaring them to be something that should be avoided, I think it would have been prudent to contact them and discuss. I know that this is the way I would have wanted it. Our church has many enemies and Im sure they will get some negative comments but im sure they would not expect them from us. Well not at least we have had a proper look at them. As you know I have already contacted them and as soon as I get the reply I will give you their responses. I do as well sugget that you perhaps contact them too. Im sure that if some of your Adventist brethren felt negatively about something you were doing you would like them to contact you and discuss.

    Bring on the Sabbath so I can rest again!!!

    Kris

  21. Thank you for another lengthy comment, Kris. I do believe that most of the issues have been addressed already. I don’t expect us to end up aggreeing.

    1. You have obviously thought a great deal about the word. I had not, as previously admitted.

    2. I have already adressed this.

    3. I have conceded that the site may have merits for people within the church who seek a safe have for meeting people they believe they agree with.

    4. You are welcome to disagree 🙂

    5. I stand by my previous comments.

    6. I think excluding people on the basis of certain lifestyle habits is naïve, at best. I know Christians (also SDA) who smoke or drink, and they are no greater sinners than anyone else. I believe that our Heavenly Father is much more interested in other things than what we eat or drink.

    7. You call me a gifted writer – I don’t know whether to take this as a compliment or a criticism. You are correct in stating that investigative journalism would perhaps yield other results, but that was never the intent here. My choice is more in the genre of op-ed. You are welcome to give another angle on your own blog? 😉

  22. Hi K

    I feel like I am in debate school and this is good as that is exactly what us as Adventist even Christians should do. I stand by my statement that you are a gifted writer and that can only mean you have a gift for writing. But good writers should also be able to stand up when they are wrong or even retract statements when they are incorrect. If I may borrow a page from Scientists. Scientists love it equally when they are right or wrong about something as it aids further discovery and ensures that any conclusion realised will have greater merit. You have sidestepped a lot of issues instead of putting your hands up and saying perhaps I was wrong about that at least.

    In reference to my last post

    Point 1. You did not answer my question and chose to sidestep.

    Point 3. Your point “I have conceded that the site may have merits for people within the church who seek a safe have for meeting people they believe they agree with.” are you infurring that such a belief would be incorrect or ill advised? Its not whether they believe they agree with, They do agree with these people or we would not share the common name Adventist.

    Point 4: yes lets agree to disagree

    Point 5. I cant think of any angle you can provide that would make your comments on this correct or true. I feel I have very concisely explained that your statement of Good and regular standing is equal to holier than thou is seriously flawed and has no substance but please enlighten me on any angle I have overlooked

    Point 6

    I think you are getting two things confused here. No one is talking about excluding people for lifestyle habits many Christians inded do hide certain lifestyle habits from the church . All they ask is that you attend Church regularly not whether you drink or smoke. They are asking whether an Adventist website is a relevant place to find other Adventists that smoke?. Especially as it goes against the grain of what we are. Would you walk into church and say I am Kenneth and I am looking to meet fellow Adventists that smoke?.

    7: I think you are conceding the point that indeed investigative Journalism would have been wiser (And Fairer) especially since they are our own. So why not just say that. More accurate results is indeed more relevant in this case than you stating it would have brought forth other results. As Op-ed you have every right to express your proclivities but sweeping statements such as I will avoid and I suggest you do the same having not even researched or experienced the Item in question thoroughly le alone draw conclusions based on fact is not I believe honourable or fair. How would you feel if someone made such sweeping conclusions about you based on supposition. As I said lets see the fruits before we chop down the tree.

    By writing a blog I am sure you are inviting others to absorb your comments but also give alternative and sometimes more enlightened contributions. If that is not the case and you wish to express your feelings unchallenged then please forgive me for crashing the party :-). You have indeed inspired me to do my own blog and will strive to make one as engaging as yours. I do enjoy that you play devils advocate a lot too. 🙂

    Going back to Christian nightclubs, I Googled the term and guess what, they are plenty already!. Perhaps a bit of investigative journalism is in order. 🙂

    Ill be in touch brother from another mother.

    Kris

  23. “Point 4: yes lets agree to disagree”

    I will leave it at this.

    Your comments are most welcome, but I also believe I have given responses to the objections that have arisen–both in the original post and in comments. I do not expect you to change your views just because I restate mine–that goes both ways.

    God bless.

  24. A comment for Kris:

    http://www.adventistforum.com is a rather large Adventist Forum, where all aspects of Adventisme is discussed. A small fee is also required to gain writing rights, which is done ensure that only interested members join, which for the most part are adventists. So Adventplanet.com is not the only adventist forum, with adventist only members.

  25. Happy Sabbath Everyone! (Well Almost Ha Ha) You are correct Andreas but I never said that it was the only forum, which by the description given is not what it is. I said that it would have been better to say, the first social networking website for Adventists.

    Peace and Love To you

    Kris

  26. Ken,
    Another post of yours compared the Adventist and Catholic church structures with China as an example. I would agree that we have a strong centralized ecclesiastical structure which is quite unusual for protestants. Even Anglicans, a quite integrated global church, has looser affiliations between regional bodies.

    I had thought of joining the sevy website this post talks about but I decided not to since it was so visually unwieldy and generally hard to navigate. Call it an aesthetic objection 😉
    cheers!

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