Table of Contents
 
Defending the TRUE Godhead
Exposing Satan's Greatest Deception on God's Remnant Church


“The Restorer of Paths to Dwell In”
Chapter 39 - Part 10 – The Pioneers - I


“… and thou shalt be called, The repairer of the breach, The restorer of paths to dwell in.” Isaiah 58:12


My brothers and sisters, we have read previously that our religion has been changed. But changed from what? If we do not know our history, if we do not know what our pioneers believed, than we are blind to the fact that our religion has indeed been changed. In order to answer God’s call to be “restorers of paths to dwell in,” we need to understand exactly what our pioneers believed in, in four specific areas:

#1. What Our Pioneer's Believed About the Trinity;
#2. What Our Pioneer's Believed About the Father;
#3. What Our Pioneer's Believed About God’s Son;
#4. What Our Pioneer's Believed About God’s Spirit.


In some of our previous chapters, we gave a few quotes from our pioneers. In Chapters 39 & 40 we will be more comprehensive in our study.

First we want to repeat a quote form God’s prophet we stated in a previous message. 1 SM 206.4. We need to pay attention to what she said as there are those in leadership positions that say our pioneers were in error. “Many of our people do not realize how firmly the foundation of our faith has been laid. My husband, Elder Joseph Bates, Father Pierce, Elder [Hiram] Edson, and others who were keen, noble, and true, were among those who, after the passing of the time in 1844, searched for the truth as for hidden treasure. I met with them, and we studied and prayed earnestly. Often we remained together until late at night, and sometimes through the entire night, praying for light and studying the Word. Again and again these brethren came together to study the Bible, in order that they might know its meaning, and be prepared to teach it with power. When they came to the point in their study where they said, "We can do nothing more," the Spirit of the Lord would come upon me, I would be taken off in vision, and a clear explanation of the passages we had been studying would be given me, with instruction as to how we were to labor and teach effectively. Thus light was given that helped us to understand the scriptures in regard to Christ, His mission, and His priesthood. A line of truth extending from that time to the time when we shall enter the city of God, was made plain to me, and I gave to others the instruction that the Lord had given me.” {EGW 1SM 206.4}”

Before we get into the Pioneers statements, we need to establish the fact that our pioneers were ant-Trinitarians. The evidence is from an Adventist Historian and Professor from Andrews University, who co-authored a book titled “The Trinity.” This is a statement from page 190. “That most of the leading SDA pioneers were non-Trinitarians in their Theology has become accepted Adventist history, …” same page it goes on to say, “… either the pioneers were wrong and the present church is right, or the pioneers were right and the present Seventh-day Adventist Church has apostatized from biblical truth.” On page 191, it says, “From about 1846 to 1888 the majority of Adventists rejected the concept of the Trinity – at least as they understood it. All the leading writers were anti-Trinitarian …”

Now listen to what it says in “The Trinity” in chapter 13 on page 202 speaking about the pioneers, “Thus they initially rejected the traditional doctrine of the trinity …” In the next sentence they say the pioneers finally became convinced of one God in three persons. The problem with this false witness is that people who read this uninspired book will believe the professors without investigating what the pioneers did believe.

That book is dangerous for that last statement is dead wrong. Now it is time to examine what the pioneers really did believe.

#1. What Our Pioneer's Believed About the Trinity

JAMES WHITE
- "The way spiritualizers this way have disposed of or denied the only Lord God and our Lord Jesus Christ is first using the old unscriptural Trinitarian creed" The Day Star, Jan. 24, 1846.

J.H. WAGGONER - "The great mistake of Trinitarians, in arguing this subject, seems to be this: They make no distinction between a denial of a Trinity and a denial of the divinity of Christ. They see only the two extremes, between which the truth lies; and take every expression referring to the pre-existence of Christ as evidence of a Trinity. The Scriptures abundantly teach the pre-existence of Christ and his divinity; but they are entirely silent in regard to a Trinity." The Atonement, 1872 ed. chapter 4, "Doctrine Of A Trinity Subversive Of The Atonement" p. 165.

A.J. DENNIS - "What a contradiction of terms is found in the language of a Trinitarian creed: 'In unity of this Godhead are three persons, of one substance, power, and eternity, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost.' There are many things that are mysterious, written in the word of God, but we may safely presume the Lord never calls upon us to believe impossibilities. But creeds often do." Signs of the Times, May 22, 1879.

R.F. COTTRELL - "My reasons for not adopting and defending it, are 1. Its name is unscriptural the Trinity, or the triune God, is unknown to the Bible; and I have entertained the idea that doctrines which require words coined in the human mind to express them, are coined doctrines. 2. I have never felt called upon to adopt and explain that which is contrary to all the sense and reason that God has given me. All my attempts at an explanation of such a subject would make it no clearer to my friends..." Review and Herald, June 1, 1869.

J.N. LOUGHBOROUGH - "The word Trinity nowhere occurs in the Scriptures. The principal text supposed to teach it is 1 John 5:7, which is an interpolation. Clarke says, 'Out of one hundred and thirteen manuscripts, the text is wanting in one hundred and twelve. It occurs in no MS. before the tenth century. And the first place the text occurs in Greek, is in the Greek translation of the acts of the Council of Latern, held A.D. 1215.'-Com. on John 1, and remarks at close of chap." Review and Herald, Nov. 5, 1861. | back |

A side note about 1 John 5:7 “For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one.” (1 John 5:7) Ellen White never once quoted it and a great majority of Bible Commentaries tell us that this verse has no legitimate place in the Scriptures. In the Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary, it says, “The passage as given in the KJV is in no Greek MS earlier than the 15th and the 16th centuries. The disputed words found their way into the KJV by way of the Greek text of Erasmus (see Vol. V, p. 141). It is said that Erasmus offered to include the disputed words in his Greek Testament if he were shown even one Greek MS that contained them. A library in Dublin produced such a MS (known as 34), and Erasmus included the passage in his text. It is now believed that the later editions of the Vulgate acquired the passage by the mistake of a scribe who included an exegetical marginal comment in the Bible text that he was copying. The disputed words have been widely used in support of the doctrine of the Trinity, but, in view of such overwhelming evidence against their authenticity, their support is valueless and should not be used. In spite of their appearance in the Vulgate A Catholic Commentary on Holy Scripture freely admits regarding these words: “It is now generally held that this passage, called the Comma Johanneum, is a gloss that crept into the text of the Old Latin and Vulgate at an early date, but found its way into the Greek text only in the 15th and 16th centuries” (Thomas Nelson and Sons, 1951, p. 1186) (The SDA Bible Commentary, comments on 1 John 5: 7)

J.B. FRISBIE - "We will make a few extracts, that the reader may see the broad contrast between the God of the Bible brought to light through Sabbath-keeping, and the god in the dark through Sunday-keeping. Catholic Catechism Abridged by the Rt. Rev. John Dubois, Bishop of New York. Page 5. '
Q. Where is God? Ans. God is everywhere.
Q. Does God see and know all things? Ans. Yes, he does know and see all things...
Q. Are there more Gods than one? Ans. No; there is but one God.
Q. Are there more persons than one in God? Ans. Yes; in God there are three persons.
Q. Which are they? Ans. God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Ghost.
Q. Are there not three Gods? Ans. No; the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost, are all but one and the same God'...
These ideas well accord with those heathen philosophers...We should rather mistrust that the Sunday God [the Trinity] came from the same source that Sunday-keeping did." Review and Herald, Feb. 28, 1854, The Sunday God, p.50. [emphasis supplied].

J.N. LOUGHBOROUGH - "Questions for Bro. Loughborough. Bro. White: The following questions I would like to have you give, or send, to Bro. Loughborough for explanation. W. W. Giles, Toledo, Ohio
Question 1. What serious objections is there to the doctrine of the Trinity?
ANSWER. There are many objections which we might urge, but on account of our limited space we shall reduce them to the three following: 1. It is contrary to common sense. 2. It is contrary to scripture. 3. Its origin is pagan and fabulous... Instead of pointing us to scripture for proof of the Trinity, we are pointed to the trident of the Persians...This doctrine of the Trinity was brought into the church about the same time with image worship, and keeping the day of the sun, and is but Persian doctrine remodeled. It occupied about three hundred years from its introduction to bring the doctrine to what it is now. It was commenced about 325 A.D., and was not completed till 681. See Milman's Gibbon's Rome, vol. iv, p. 422. It was adopted in Spain in 589, in England in 596, in Africa in 534.-Gib. vol. iv, pp. 114, 345; Milner, vol. i, p. 519." RH-Nov. 5, 1861. | back |

J.H. WAGGONER - "The 'Athanasian creed'...was formulated and the faith defined by Athanasius. Previous to that time there was no settled method of expression, if, indeed, there was anywhere any uniformity of belief. Most of the early writers had been pagan philosophers, who to reach the minds of that class, often made strong efforts to prove that there was a blending of the two systems, Christianity and philosophy. There is abundance of material in their writings to sustain this view. Bingham speaks of the vague views held by some in the following significant terms: "'There were some very early that turned the doctrine of the Trinity into Tritheism, and, instead of three divine persons under the economy of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, brought in three collateral, coordinate, and self-originated beings, making them three absolute and independent principles, without any relation of Father or Son, which is the most proper notion of three gods. And having made this change in the doctrine of the Trinity, they made another change answerable to it in the form of baptism.'-Antiquities, book 11, chap. 3, &4. "Who can distinguish between this form of expression and that put forth by the council of Constantinople in A.D. 381, wherein the true faith is declared to be that of 'an uncreated and consubstantial and co-eternal Trinity?' The truth is that we find the same idea which is here described by Bingham running through much of the orthodox literature of the second and third centuries. There is no proper 'relation of Father and Son' to be found in the words of the council, above quoted...Bingham says this error in regard to a Trinity of three coordinate and self-originated and independent beings arose in the church very early; and so we find it in the earliest authors after the days of the apostles." Thoughts on Baptism, 1878.

R.F.COTTRELL - "That one person is three persons, and that three persons are only one person, is the doctrine which we claim is contrary to reason and common sense. The being and attributes of God are above, beyond, out of reach of my sense and reason, yet I believe them": But the doctrine I object to is contrary, yes, that is the word, to the very sense and reason that God has himself implanted in us. Such a doctrine he does not ask us to believe. A miracle is beyond our comprehension, but we all believe in miracles who believe our own senses. What we see and hear convinces us that there is a power that effected the most wonderful miracle of creation. But our Creator has made it an absurdity to us that one person should be three persons, and three persons but one person; and in his revealed word he has never asked us to believe it. This our friend thinks objectionable... "But to hold the doctrine of the Trinity is not so much an evidence of evil intention as of intoxication from that wine of which all the nations have drunk. The fact that this was one of the leading doctrines, if not the very chief, upon which the bishop of Rome was exalted to the popedom, does not say much in its favor. This should cause men to investigate it for themselves; as when the spirits of devils working miracles undertake the advocacy of the immortality of the soul. Had I never doubted it before, I would now probe it to the bottom, by that word which modern Spiritualism sets at nought. "Revelation goes beyond us; but in no instance does it go contrary to right reason and common sense. God has not claimed, as the popes have, that he could 'make justice of injustice,' nor has he, after teaching us to count, told us that there is no difference between the singular and plural numbers. Let us believe all he has revealed, and add nothing to it." Review and Herald, July 6, 1869.

A.T. JONES - "Another, and most notable opponent, was Servetus who had opposed the Catholic doctrine of the Trinity, and also infant baptism." Review and Herald, June 17, 1884.

D.W. HULL - "The inconsistent positions held by many in regard to the Trinity, as it is termed, has, no doubt, been the prime cause of many other errors. Erroneous views of the divinity of Christ are apt to lead us into error in regard to the nature of the atonement... "The doctrine which we propose to examine, was established by the council of Nice, A.D., 325, and ever since that period, persons not believing this peculiar tenet, have been denounced by popes and priests, as dangerous heretics. It was for a disbelief in this doctrine. that the Arians were anathematized in A.D., 513... "As we can trace this doctrine no further back than the origin of the 'Man of Sin,' and as we find this dogma at that time established rather by force than otherwise, we claim the right to investigate the matter, and ascertain the bearing of Scripture on this subject." Review and Herald, Nov.10, 1859.

#2. What Our Pioneer's Believed About the Father

JAMES WHITE - "To assert that the sayings of the Son and his apostles are the commandments of the Father, is as wide from the truth as the old Trinitarian absurdity that Jesus Christ is the very and eternal God." Review and Herald, Aug. 5, 1852, p.52.

J.N.ANDREWS - "That God is the fountain and source of immortality is plain from the statement of Paul. He speaks thus of God the Father: 'Who only hath immortality, dwelling in the light which no man can approach unto; whom no man hath seen nor can see; to whom be honor and power everlasting; Amen.' 1 Tim. 6:16. This text is evidently designed to teach that the self existent God is the only being who, of himself, possesses this wonderful nature. Others may possess it as derived from him, but he alone is the fountain of immortality. "Our Lord Jesus Christ is the source of this life to us. 'For as the Father hath life in himself, so hath he given to the Son to have life in himself.' John 5:26. 'As the living Father hath sent me, and I live by the Father; so he that eateth me, even he shall live by me.' John 6:57. The Father gives us this life in His Son. 'And this is the record that God hath given to us eternal life and this life is in his Son. He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life.' 1Jn 5:11, 12. These Scriptures do clearly indicate that Christ is the source of endless life, and that those only have this who have Christ." Review and Herald, Jan. 27, 1874 p.52.

D.M. CANRIGHT - "Text: 'But to us there is but one God, the Father, of whom are all things.' 1 Cor.8:6... "At the time when the Bible was written, nearly the whole world had adopted either Polytheism or Pantheism. Polytheism taught that there were many gods...In opposition to that, Moses and the prophets set forth the grand fact that this doctrine of many gods was a lie, and that there was but one God, Jehovah the living God... "'Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God is one Lord.' Dt. 6:4. Here we strike the key-note of the doctrine of the Deity. 'The Lord our God is ONE Lord.' Not many, not a thousand, not a hundred, not ten, not three, but only ONE-one God... [Ex. 20:3; Dt. 4:35; 2Sam. 7:22; 2Kings 19:15; Neh. 9:6; Psa. 86:10; Isa. 43:10; Isa 44:6,8; Isa. 45:5,22; quoted] No comments of ours can make these declarations plainer. There is just one eternal God and no more,-one who is the Author and Father of all things.

"Turning to the New Testament, we find the same doctrine taught just as plainly as in the Old. Neither Moses nor the prophets ever set forth the unity of God more strongly than Jesus himself. He taught it and reiterated it many times. Thus he says: 'The first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel: The lord our God is one Lord; and thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul...And the scribe said unto him, Well, Master, thou hast said the truth; for there is one God; and there is none other but he.' Mark 12:29-32. "The scribe said, 'There is one God, and there is none other but he. To this declaration Jesus assented. 'And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou has sent.' John 17:3 Jesus says his Father is the only true God. But Trinitarians contradict this by saying that the Son and Holy Ghost are just as much the true God as the Father is... [1 Cor. 8:4-6 quoted] "Says the great apostle, 'There is none other God but one,' and 'there is but one God, the Father, of whom are all things.' He tells us who this one God is. It is not the Holy Ghost; it is not Jesus Christ, but it is the Father. Gal. 3:20; 1 Tim. 1:17.

There is, then, only one wise God. 1 Tim. 2:5; Dt. 6:4. Those who are familiar with the Bible will see that I have selected only a few of the plainest texts upon this doctrine. How the doctrine of the Trinity, of three Gods, can be reconciled with these positive statements I do not know. It seems to me that nothing can be framed which more clearly denies the doctrine of the Trinity, than do the Scriptures above quoted.

"And then the Bible never uses the phrases, 'Trinity,' 'triune God,' 'three in one,' 'the holy three," 'God the Holy Ghost,' etc. but it does emphatically say there is only one God, the Father. And every argument to prove three Gods in one person, God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Ghost, all of them of one substance, and every way equal to each other, and all three forming but one, contradicts itself, contradicts reason, and contradicts the Bible... "God is self-existent, and the source and author of all things,-of angels, of men, of all the worlds,-of everything. Thus Paul says, 'For of him and through him and to him, are all things; to whom be glory forever. Amen.' Rom. 11:36. "He is the source of all life and immortality. Thus, speaking of the Father, Paul says, 'Who only hath immortality, dwelling in the light which no man can approach unto.' 1 Tim. 6:16. Notice that this glorious God is the only one who, in himself, possesses immortality. That is, he is the fountain-head, the source of all life and immortality... "'For as the Father hath life in himself; so hath he given to the Son to have life in himself.' John 5:26. This statement is unequivocal. The Father has life in himself, and in his great love for his Son he bestows the same gift upon him; but it will be noticed that the Father is the one from whom the gift came... "How carefully Paul distinguishes between the Father and the Son. He says, 'The Father, of whom are all things,' and 'Jesus Christ, by whom are all things.' The Father is the source of everything. Jesus is the one through whom all things are done. All the authority, the glory, and the power of Christ he received from his Father...

"A belief in this doctrine is very important. Indeed, it cannot be too strongly insisted upon. Jesus even declares that the knowledge of this truth is necessary to eternal life. 'And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou has sent.' John 17:3. "We must know the Father as the only true God. Then there is no true God besides the Father. But we must also know his Son Jesus Christ, whom he has sent. How simple and plain is this doctrine, and how abundantly sustained by the Holy Bible." Review and Herald, Aug. 29, 1878.

Did you catch what Brother Canright said? He said, “And every argument to prove three Gods in one person, God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Ghost, all of them of one substance, and every way equal to each other, and all three forming but one, contradicts itself, contradicts reason, and contradicts the Bible...” Sister White never corrected this statement and God never told her to correct Canright’s above statement. This is what Kellogg believed and this is in the 1981 Fundamental Beliefs.

We are getting a much better idea of how our religion has been changed.

In Chapter 40 - Part 11, we will finish the pioneer’s statements of belief about the Father and begin the pioneer’s statements of belief about God’s Son.