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Adventist Heritage History

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Adventist Heritage History
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  1 | Page  Adventist Heritage Introduction It is a blessing that the seventh day Adventist church came to realize that they were the remnant church. To the contrary, from their beginning they have understood their movement to be a fulfilment of prophecy. Their role, as they have seen it, has been to preach the unique message of the three angels of Revelation 14:6- 12, presenting God’s last appeal to a d ying world before Christ returns to harvest the earth (See verses 14-20). Seventh-day Adventists eventually concluded that they needed to preach their special message to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people. And that belief, coupled with a sense of nearness of the end of earthly time, has impelled them into one of history’s most energetic mission  programs. However; this essay will examine the historical development of Adventist Theology and demonstrate how Adventist theology shaped the mission of growing the Seventh day Adventist church. At the end of this essay one can come to understand the historical development of Seventh day Adventist and, how it shaped the mission of the growing Seventh Day Adventist Church. Furthermore; Adventists came to view themselves as a prophetic people, of their growing awareness of a responsibility to take their unique message to all the world, and of their organizational and institutional development as they wanted to fulfil their prophetic mission.  2 | Page  The historical development of Adventist Theology Modern Seventh-day Adventism finds its immediate roots in the Second Advent movement of the early nineteenth century. While many preachers proclaimed the soon coming of Christ in Europe and other parts of the world, the belief made its largest impact in North America. Central to North American Adventist beginnings was a Baptist layman by the name of William Miller in 1782-1849. However; William Miller was the founder of the Adventist movement and the millerite roots. In addition; Arthur Whitefield Spalding stated that, the Miller movement was the immediate background of the Seventh-day Adventist people and church, and the matrix in which they were formed and also, in its developed theology this church has made advances  beyond Miller's initial doctrines and taught the imminent return of the Lord Jesus Christ without Miller's time setting, the moral awakening and the keen expectation of the Advent in the 1844 movement are the womb from which was born the modern child. In Addition the founders of the Seventh-day Adventist Church were believers and workers in the Second Advent Movement begun by Miller  1 . Furthermore; George R. Knight stated that, for two years 1816-1818, Miller studied his Bible intensively and in this way he finally came to the solemn conclusion that in about twenty-five years from that time in 1843, all the affairs of our present state would be wound up and Christ would come 2 . In Addition Land Gary stated that; William Miller then reached his conclusion through a study of the prophecies of the book of Daniel, especially in Daniel 8:14 says that, “Unto two thousand and three hundred days; then shall the sanctuary be cleansed.” Operating on the commonly ac cepted understanding of Numbers 14:34 and Ezekiel 4:5, 6 that a day in prophecy equals a year, Miller calculated that the 2300-day prophecy would conclude in 1843 3 . 1  Arthur Whitefield Spalding, Origin and History of Seventh-day Adventists, The People of the Advent, COPYRIGHT © 1961 BY THE REVIEW AND HERALD PUBLISHING ASSOCIATION WASHINGTON, D.C.pp23. 2  George R. Knight, A brief History of Seventh Day Adventists, Andrews University, USA, Review and Herald, 1999,pp 14. 3  Land, Gary, ed. Adventism in America: A History, rev. ed. Berrien Springs, Mich.: Andrews University Press, 1998. Pp. 1-28.  3 | Page  Furthermore, interpreting the sanctuary of Daniel 8:14 as the earth and its cleansing as the last day purging of the earth by fire. However; Miller reasoned that Christ would return to the earth at the end of the 2300 days about 1843 and his heart filled with joy. In contrast; George R. Knight stated that, he was also quite aware that his conclusion that Christ would return at the beginning of the millennium 1,000 years of Revelation 20 flew in the face of the almost universally accepted theology of his day, which held that Christ would return at the end of the millennium 4 . However; his first presentation on the Second Advent led to several conversions. Later Miller had an unending stream of invitations to hold meetings in the churches of various denominations. Though; by the end of the 1830s the reluctant prophet had won several ministers to his view that Christ would come about the year 1843. The most significant of those ministerial converts was Joshua V. Himes of the Christian Connexion. Joshua V Himes and Miller formed a symbiotic team and Himes was an excellent organiser, Miller was a thinker and theologian. Besides; Himes was generally deferred to Miller in relating to matters to be preached, and Miller to Himes on evangelistic and  promotional strategy. On the other hand; about the three angels message in Revelation 14:6-12, it was a very important text that connects to Matthew 24 that present the same idea of telling the people about the Advent message and warning the people that time about the future and the Second coming of the Messiah. In contrast; the Second Advent of the Lord, therefore, became the great hope and longing of Christians. It was the climax of divine prophecies, ancient and current. It was constantly proclaimed  by the apostles, who looked for its early fulfilment. Though the Millerites were unanimous that the year 1843 was the year of the Second Advent. Some however; expected Christ to come within the regular Gregorian calendar year January 1 to December 31, 1843. 5   4  George R. Knight, A brief History of Seventh Day Adventists, Andrews University, USA, Review and Herald, 1999,pp 15. 5   Editorial, Fundamental Principles, on which the Second Advent cause is based, “ST, May 3, 1843, p.68. Cf. Editorial, The New Year, “ST, Jan. 3, 1844, p. 164. Later on, this position was changed to the Jewish year (Editorial, “Fundamental Principles, “ST, Nov. 29, 1843, p. 121).  4 | Page 
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