QUESTION: Why do you call yourself a Gospel Adventist?

ANSWER: I am a 4th generation Seventh-day Adventist who grew up in the church. As a teenager I thought that the spirit of God would allow us to perfect our characters, if not now, then prior to probation closing. Once probation closed than we would be lost if we had unconfessed sin in our lives. But I found out through reading the scriptures that the only condition for salvation is simple faith in the atoning sacrifice of Jesus Christ. This was revealed to me by the Holy Spirit before I even knew much about church history.

Then I studied the reformation and found justification by faith was the major teaching that separated protestants and catholics. I even found that Ellen White held this position alongside Jones and Waggoner, and she rigorously supported the view of righteousness by faith even at the cost of her personal popularity and influence in the church.

Then I have experienced how legalism can damage our relationship with God and our fellow man, while the gospel brings us the love, joy, and peace of the Holy Spirit. Furthermore, I have witnessed a deliberate attempt by church leaders to purge the church of gospel Adventist pastors and laypeople to keep the tithe money flowing into the general conference. Yet, despite the works of the enemy to keep the church in bondage, the Holy Spirit has allowed the gospel to come to light in a way that cannot be hidden.

I am a Gospel Adventist who focuses on the cross of Christ and the atoning sacrifice made for our sins, as opposed to focusing on behaviorism and moralism as conditions for salvation.

I still believe in obedience to the 10 commandments that exist as a summary of God’s perfect law of love. I confess that there is a blessing to obedience to the law of God. However, our obedience comes as a result of having the assurance that we are sons and daughters of God by faith in Christ alone.

Stephen Beagles