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The emerging church and the one project part 10
 

The emerging church and the one project part 10

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The Emerging Church and The One Project? is a series of PowerPoint presentations asking the question if there is in fact a connection between the two. The purpose of the presentations are not to ...

The Emerging Church and The One Project? is a series of PowerPoint presentations asking the question if there is in fact a connection between the two. The purpose of the presentations are not to lambast those who want to lift Jesus up, but rather to allow leaders of the One Project to tell us in their own words (and the words of those promoting the project) what their goals and aspirations really are, and how these goals have been enacted in their past experiences.
Presentation 1 of 10 is a summary of the Emerging Church as defined on Wikipedia. This is a summary of the 17 page article found there which is taken from many leading proponents of the Emerging Church here in America.
Presentations 2 through 4 deal with Leonard Sweet, a leader in the Emerging Church movement and a professor at George Fox University, and many of the nearly 50 books he has authored which express his various viewpoints.
Presentations 5 through 9 deal with the five main leaders of The One Project, four of which graduated with or started DMin degrees from George Fox University under the mentorship of Leonard Sweet. In each presentation an objective look is taken at material in print telling of each leaders work and ministry up to 2012. The question will naturally follow; is this the direction we should be leading our young people in the Adventist Church?
Presentation 10 deals with the One Project gathering in Seattle, February of 2012, looking at the claims of the Project “Jesus. All” and comparing this to what really took place at the gathering. Yes, there was some good points made, and we need to lift Jesus up, but…. We also take a look at a little of the evidence suggesting The One Project is a response to GYC.
For a fully interactive edition of all 10 presentations with video clips, contact: theemergingoneproject@gmail.com

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  • My study into the emerging church started when a pastor back East asked if I knew anything about “The One Project”. When I began to study into the history of the Project and those who started the movement, I was lead to enquire about the Emerging Church and its teachings and history. I found that it deals with much more than just “spiritual formation” and “centering prayer.”
  • The Seattle One Project gathering in Feb. of 2012 was the first large gathering since the One Project’s inception in the summer of 2010 (there had been a gathering in Feb. 2011 in Atlanta with ~180 people). The Project is based on the philosophy of the founders and described on their web page: “Why” (see presentation 5). This was also the first large gathering that was publicized in many church papers. What were/are the stated goals of the Project? How would/have the official church papers represent the project? (http://the1project.org/why.html)
  • The Seattle One Project gathering in Feb. of 2012 was the first large gathering since the One Project’s inception in the summer of 2010. The Project is based on the philosophy of the founders and described on their web page: “Why” (see presentation 5). But what would the One Project look like in action? How would Jesus be made all?
  • The Seattle One Project gathering booklet was filled with the theme of making Jesus all. Advertisements from Adventist Universities, Adventist Conferences and Adventist Ministries where scattered throughout the 110 page booklet. Even Lightbearers Ministry had an advertisement page (which was possible only if someone from Lightbearers was present at the gathering). Although the emphasis on Jesus is great, what “Jesus” is/was being presented? And how did it play out in the gathering itself?(http://www.the1project.org/resources/documents/seattle-booklet.pdf [this booklet is not longer available online])
  • The Seattle One Project gathering booklet was filled with the theme of making Jesus all. Taking the booklet at face value one could hardly disagree with the focus and purpose of The One Project. The claim that “no agenda but the joy of re-investing in Jesus” is a worthy claim. Although the emphasis on Jesus is great, what “Jesus” is/was being presented? And how did their sole agenda play out in the gathering itself?In a brief history about the Project’s beginnings they compare themselves to Elijah, with many others (7000) who have the same “agenda.” Like the Andrews University News which claimed that “these seven modern-day disciples began to seek out others to join them in their renewed mission to celebrate His supremacy” (http://www.andrews.edu/news/2011/03/one_project.html), this is a high claim. But is it true?
  • Page 60 of the Seattle One Project booklet lists the partners that have joined forces to support The One Project. Many conferences and Universities in the NAD top the list, along with many ministries (some officially run by the Church and others independently run). This of course gives the appearance that the Project and all that it stands for is supported far and wide amongst the Adventist church.
  • Page 60 of the Seattle One Project booklet lists the partners that have joined forces to support The One Project. Many conferences and Universities in the NAD top the list, along with several ministries (some officially run by the Church and others independently run). This of course gives the appearance that the Project and all that it stands for is supported far and wide amongst the Adventist church. However, the booklet’s statement, representing the One Project philosophy, is somewhat curious in regard to their Partners. They state of their partners: “Their brave commitment to freedom in Jesus can be seen in their own stance and their support of us.” What are some/all of these “partners” doing that shows “freedom in Jesus”? Are not many of them pushing against the norms in Adventism? A closer look at many of the “partners” would reveal a very progressive/liberal trend among the Colleges/Universities, and many of the Conferences and ministries listed.
  • The booklet’s statement, representing the One Project philosophy, is somewhat curious in regard to their Partners: “Their brave commitment to freedom in Jesus can be seen in their own stance and their support of us.” What are some/all of these “partners” doing that shows “freedom in Jesus”? Are not many of them pushing against the conservative norms in Adventism themselves? Would a closer look at many of the “partners” reveal a very progressive/liberal trend among the Colleges/Universities, and many of the Conferences and ministries listed?
  • Although most of the Seattle booklet gives the impression that the Project is a mainline church supported Project, a couple of the ads give a hint at the possible direction of the Project. “Change Everything”, Really? “Re:Live” is the liberal/progressive youth ministry at Loma Linda University Church under the leadership of Tim Gillespie (See presentation 8 for more details). How have these ministries lived up to the Project’s claim: “Their brave commitment to freedom in Jesus can be seen in their own stance and their support of us”? (see Seattle Booklet pages 1, 107)
  • The Seattle One Project was also the first large gathering that was publicized in many church papers. What were/are the stated goals of the Project? How would/have the official church papers represent the project? At first glance the report in the Adventist Review, gave what appeared to be a very positive version of the Project’s beginning and the gathering in Seattle. One not familiar with the background of the project leaders would have no reason to question the focus of the Project as presented in the Review.(Ansel Oliver, “’One Project’ Focuses on Adventists’ Relationship With Jesus,” Adventist Review, March 15, 2012, pp. 10-12)
  • The Seattle One Project was also the first large gathering that was publicized in many church papers. What were/are the stated goals of the Project? How would/have the official church papers represented the project? At first glance the report in the Adventist Review gave what appeared to be a very accurate version of the Project’s beginning and the gathering in Seattle. One not familiar with the background of the project leaders would have no reason to question the focus of the Project as presented in the Review. Participants where even encouraged to read the four Gospels and The Desire of Ages by Ellen White before coming to the gatherings. One would expect then that this would be a topic of discussion, right?
  • The April 2012 issue of the NPUC Gleaner published two articles on the Seattle One Project gathering. The first article was published as “Washington Conference News,” and the second as “Walla Walla University News.” Both articles presented the Project in nothing but a positive light. (NPUC Gleaner, April 2012, pp. 1, 22, 26)
  • The April issue of the NPUC Gleaner published two articles on the Seattle One Project gathering. The first article under “Washington Conference News,” published supportive comments by John McLarty, former Adventist Today editor, describing the Project gathering as simply making Jesus central. Comments were also published by John Freedman, Washington Conference president, giving the impression that he along with other leaders from western Washington, were supportive of all that the Project gathering presented. As we will see however this was not the case (see slide 75).
  • The April issue of the NPUC Gleaner published two articles on the Seattle One Project gathering. The second article under “Walla Walla University News,” published supportive statements by students who attended.
  • Although many of the main leaders of the One Project have backgrounds in liberal, progressive, or contemporary church services, rock bands, and post modern approaches to worship, and although many of the Project leaders currently support such worship services in the local church congregations (see Presentations 5 through 9), the One Project appears to have been currently packaged in a much more conservative worship format.The worship songs listed in the Seattle booklet are mostly hymns, some from the pioneer days. Young musicians were “invited” to take part who play what many would consider classical music instruments. This was a feature highly publicized in the Church papers about the One Project Seattle gathering. (http://www.the1project.org/resources/documents/seattle-booklet.pdf [this booklet is not longer available online])(http://the1project.smugmug.com/Gatherings/Seattle/22409901_rhnMRf#!i=1795495348&k=FdN5nQC)(http://the1project.smugmug.com/Gatherings/Seattle/22409901_rhnMRf#!i=1795495257&k=c7MtKbw&lb=1&s=X2)(http://the1project.smugmug.com/Gatherings/Seattle/22409901_rhnMRf#!i=1795495575&k=wBvPPFQ)(NPUC Gleaner, April 2012, p. 26)
  • The NPUC Gleaner presents the worship style of The One Project as simple worship. The Project leaders even invited certain musicians to come and play for the gathering who were then “interviewed” for articles published in church papers. Although many of the main leaders of the One Project have backgrounds in liberal, progressive, or contemporary church services, rock bands, and post modern approaches to worship, and although many of the Project leaders currently support such worship services in the local church congregations, The One Project appears to have been currently packaged in a much more conservative worship format.The worship songs listed in the Seattle booklet are mostly hymns, some from the pioneer days. Young musicians were “invited” to take part who play what many would consider classical musical instruments.
  • The One Project was scheduled to take place not in a meeting hall but in a ball room with a stage surrounded by tables. A center stage was set up for the speakers from which to make short presentations (with large screens projecting their talks around the room). Following their presentations “conversations” were to follow at each table. The full two day gathering featured only about 4 hours of presentations and probably three times that amount of facilitated “conversation”.(http://www.andrews.edu/focus/archives/2012-1-focus-web.pdf) page. 19(http://the1project.smugmug.com/Gatherings/Seattle/22409901_rhnMRf#!i=1795276981&k=z4pK7wb&lb)(http://the1project.smugmug.com/Gatherings/Seattle/22409901_rhnMRf#!i=1795288080&k=Sf6rQWb)(http://the1project.smugmug.com/Gatherings/Seattle/22409901_rhnMRf#!i=1795495013&k=R6vDpP2)
  • The Adventist Review article on the One Project gathering mentions the meeting format and gives some reasons why this was chosen. (Ansel Oliver, “’One Project’ Focuses on Adventists’ Relationship With Jesus,” Adventist Review, March 15, 2012, pp. 10-12)
  • De Oliveira describes how even the gathering’s format was planned based on similar conferences that he has attended (many conferences, which by the way, are driven by Emerging Church concepts). There is nothing wrong with setting around tables at a conference and nothing wrong with conversations following a presentation. But we must remember that there is a very well thought out plan and purpose that the Emerging Church movement is working off of in order to push their agenda! We should ask if this is not the same with the One Project based on the history of the gathering’s main leaders? We will look at the idea of “conversations” among the Emerging Church a little later in this presentation. (The comment about “we didn’t want to have another event that’s packed with programming all day” may be a reference to GYC. See below).
  • The One Project idea was born through “conversation” and continues to promote it’s concepts based on the same plan. The One Project “conversations,” according to it’s leaders, seem to be geared for those who are questioning their own or the churches beliefs and/or those who are frustrated with the Church. Thus the Project seems geared toward the progressive Advent movement who have many an axe to grind, but while seeking to be under the auspices or support of the mainline Church itself. The Project plans to continue the “conversation” in the future. What does that mean?
  • The NPUCGleaner even titles its article after the concept of “conversations.” But it seems difficult to ascertain, especially perhaps to the passive reader, just what the real substance or purpose is for generating these “conversations”. There is an undeniable sense that the Project is seeking to bring about a change, but what is this “Jesus conversation” and what is the change that is being sought? (Heidi Martella, “Washington Leaders Join Jesus Conversation in Seattle,” Gleaner, April 2012, p. 22)(Martin Surridge, “The One Project—Seattle,” Gleaner, April 2012, p. 26)
  • The NPUCGleaner even titles its article after the concept of “conversations.” But it seems difficult to ascertain, especially perhaps to the passive reader, just what the real substance or purpose is for generating these “conversations”. There is an undeniable sense that the Project is seeking to bring about a change, but what is this “Jesus conversation” and what is the change that is being sought? It is not as though the church has never sought to lift of Jesus. What is it about Jesus that the Project is presenting?
  • The NPUC Gleaner article on Walla Walla University News seems to offer similar nebulous insights into the idea of the what exactly these “conversations” offer. Based on Alex Bryan’s history what is it that “God is up to” and what is the “fresh conversation”? He said similar things about his Church plant in Atlanta, driven by Willow Creek ideas which he apparently has never denounced. There seems to be a real drive to pull Adventist young people into this movement. The question is, what kind of revolution are we talking about?
  • Not only were the presentations planned based on the Project leaders pre-thought-out themes, but the “conversations” taking place at each table after each presentation were guided by hand picked “facilitators” and based on the pre-published booklet with “Recalibrate” outlines for each presentation. This style of “conversation” is very popular among the Emerging Church movement (see below).
  • The One Project Seattle gathering booklet listed most of the 700 attendees. Their web site also listed their ~85 hand picked “facilitators” which would help guide the “conversations” following each presentation (this list has since been removed). There was also a list of “tips” in the booklet to help guide the facilitators.
  • The One Project Seattle gathering booklet listed most of the 700 attendees. Their web site also listed their hand picked “facilitators” which would help guide the “conversations” following each presentation (this list has since been removed). There was also a list of “tips” in the booklet to help guide the facilitators. At face value it all seems like great advice to help “facilitate” “conversations” that will help Jesus to be All in the Adventist Church. … Again, there is nothing wrong with having a facilitator of conversations, but the One Project list of ~85 hand picked facilitators (no longer posted) could be easily seen as a who’s who of current progressive/liberal Adventist pastors, educators and administrators, many of which have spent their life energies on bringing about a grand reformation, as they see it, into the Adventist Church.
  • Again, there is nothing wrong with having a facilitator of conversations, but the One Project list of ~85 hand picked facilitators (no longer posted) could be easily seen as a who’s who of current progressive/liberal Adventist pastors, educators and administrators, many of which have spent their life energies on bringing about a grand reformation, as they see it, into the Adventist Church. One of those “facilitators” was Washington state Pastor John McLarty, former Adventist Today editor (1997 – 2007) and blogger at liberaladventist.blogspot.com . The NPUC Gleaner highlighted McLarty in their article about the Seattle gathering, although inaccurately stating that McLarty “joined a small group discussion” instead of stating that he was the “facilitator of a small group discussion.” McLarty also wrote a very revealing article for Adventist Today about the gathering which we will take a look at below. What was the overall direction of the “conversations” led by these hand picked “facilitators”?(Heidi Martella, “Washington Leaders Join Jesus Conversation in Seattle,” Gleaner, April 2012, p. 22)(http://the1project.smugmug.com/Gatherings/Seattle/22409901_rhnMRf#!i=1795495401&k=Hbz6DV5)
  • But before we continue looking at the Seattle gathering, we should pause and ask about the one facilitator that the Gleaner highlighted in their article about the One Project. That “facilitator” was Washington Pastor John McLarty, former Adventist Today editor (1997 – 2007) and blogger at liberaladventist.blogspot.com . What was the overall direction of the “conversations” led by these hand picked “facilitators”? We will diverge for just a few slides (4) to take a look at John McLarty's roots in Adventism (an entire presentation could probably be devoted to this topic). During his 10 years of editorship of Adventist Today, McLarty mixed no bones about his denial of the sanctuary doctrine and his support of Desmond Ford and Raymond Cottrell (and their assault on Adventist’s foundations). In 2003 McLarty’s Adventist Today Editorial highlighted Raymond Cottrell’s challenging Adventism’s foundational beliefs (or rather his latter apostasy from foundational Adventism), describing Cottrell as a “prophet” in his own right. (John Mclarty, “Notes From the Editor: The community and Its Prophets,” Adventist Today, Jan. – Feb. 2003, p. 2)
  • McLarty mixed no bones about his denial of the sanctuary doctrine and his support of Desmond Ford and Raymond Cottrell during his 10 years of editorship of Adventist Today. In 2003 McLarty’s Editorial highlighted Raymond Cottrell’s latter apostasy from foundational Adventism, describing Cottrell as a “prophet” in his own right. Cattrell had also given up the view of a literal 7 day creation.The applying prophetic status to modern day progressive Adventists is something very common in the pages of Adventist Today over the past several years. For more documentation on this subject email: returnofthelatterrain@gmail.com.
  • The 2006 third quarter Adventist Adult Sabbath School lessons (written by Clifford Goldstein) was devoted to the topic of “The Gospel, 1844 and the Judgment.” So for three months (July – September, 2006), the world church studied this Biblical foundational Adventist doctrine of the Sanctuary, 1844 and the Judgment. Adventist Today, on the other hand, led by editor Pastor John McLarty, staged an ongoing assault on the topic of 1844 with its pro Desmond Ford and Raymond Cottrell anti-sanctuary stance. Yet, McLarty was one of the hand picked “facilitators” at The One Project Seattle gathering, and was also supportively presented in the NPUC Gleaner article about the Project.
  • The 2006 third quarter Adventist Adult Sabbath School lessons (written by Clifford Goldstein) was devoted to the topic of “The Gospel, 1844 and the Judgment.” So for three months (July – September, 2006), the world church studied this Biblical foundational Adventist doctrine of the Sanctuary, 1844 and the Judgment. Adventist Today on the other hand, led by editor Pastor John McLarty, staged an ongoing assault on the topic of 1844 with its pro Desmond Ford and Raymond Cottrell anti-sanctuary stance. Yet, McLarty was one of the hand picked “facilitators” at The One Project Seattle gathering, and was also supportively presented in the NPUC Gleaner article. What kind of “conversation” would this pastor (and many others like him facilitating at the One Project gathering), help lead Adventist young people into?
  • With the above in mind we will now return to the One Project Seattle gathering. Although the Adventist Review and the NPUC Gleaner do not give a full description of the “conversations” that were orchestrated at the Seattle gathering, Adventist Today and Spectrum magazine do give a revealing description, which is very supportive and sympathetic as well. We will now look at how these organizations described the “sermons” and “conversations” that took place in Seattle. (http://www.atoday.org/article/1031/news/february-headlines/the-one-project-gathering-in-seattle-attracts-700)(http://www.atoday.org/article/1322/blogs/brown-nathan/a-second-look-at-the-one-project)(http://www.atoday.org/article/1024/news/february-headlines/the-one-project-focuses-on-the-one-at-the-center-of-adventist-faith)(http://spectrummagazine.org/node/3799)
  • John McLarty, one of the gatherings facilitators and ex-editor of Adventist Today (see above), wrote and article about his experience at the Seattle gathering. His description of what took place there is much more enlightening than what appeared to be the “politically correct” written articles printed in the official church papers.
  • Nathan Brown, who attended both the Seattle and the Sydney Australia gathering (July 2012), shared through Adventist Today some more insights about the “conversations” at each of these gatherings. Although he was overall supportive of the movement and concepts, he did offer some gentle criticisms.
  • TheAdventist Today News team wrote up and article on the Seattle gathering. What is most interesting is the concept that the one and only thing that people can agree on is Jesus All. Yet the gathering as we shall see, for the purpose of Jesus All, was characterized and couched as a conversation starter to take on many of the contemporary debates and controversies, most of which are held dear by the Progressive Adventist movement. In other words, it seems to come across as: “So many are tired of the endless debates, so lets put aside all these debates and make Jesus All, … but now that we’ve made Jesus all lets take on all the controversy’s dear to us all in the name of Jesus All”!
  • Sam Neves is pastor of the Wimbledon International & South London Portuguese Seventh-day Adventist Churches. He came and attended the Seattle gathering and then wrote an article for SpectrumMagazine. His concepts mirrors those found in the above Adventist Today article. “Jesus All” (as we will see below) is being used as a means to push away from Adventist distinctives and doctrines that supposedly eclipse the Jesus Adventism is trying to share, yet “Jesus All” is also being used as a cloak to present that “revolutionary message” that apparently the One Project Jesus is so concerned about. If we want to see the effect of years of such “conversations” generated by a “community of faith”, we have only to look at the fruits of Spectrum Magazine and Adventist Today. Both are built on this philosophy that community is built through such conversations. A perusal of the past forty years of Spectrum and twenty years of Adventist Today would show where many participants have been, have gone and are now headed. Is there a similar trajectory for The One Project?
  • Alex Bryan, one of the founders of the Project, also wrote a reflective response following the Seattle gathering, which was posted on the Project’s web page. Once again Bryan reveals much more about the “conversations” at the gathering than the official church papers did. (http://the1project.org/blog/one-project-reflections-by-alex.html)
  • Alex Bryan, one of the founders of the Project, also wrote a reflective response following the Seattle gathering, which was posted on the Project’s web site. Once again Bryan reveals much more about the “conversations” at the gathering than the official church papers did. We will consider below Alex’s list of topics discussed and his claim that there was “an absence of ill spirit toward any one or any one group” during the “conversations.”
  • Alex Bryan, one of the founders of the Project, also wrote a reflective response following the Seattle gathering, which was posted on the Project’s web site. Once again Bryan reveals much more about the “conversations” at the gathering than the official church papers did. We will consider below Alex’s list of topics discussed and his claim that there was “an absence of ill spirit toward any one or any one group” during the “conversations.”
  • The two day schedule featured eight scheduled presentations or conversation starters that were meant to be 20 minutes each. Thus the sum total of presentations for the gathering took up less than 4 hours. The “conversations” that followed took up at least double that time if not more. The topics were to cover “Jesus” in Adventist history, 1844, 1888, 1957, and present, as well as looking to the future and seeing Jesus in Adventist doctrines, mission and community.
  • The two day schedule featured eight scheduled presentations or conversation starters that were meant to be 20 minutes each. Thus the sum total of presentations for the gathering took up less than 4 hours. The “conversations” that followed took up at least double that time if not more. The topics were to cover “Jesus” in Adventist history, 1844, 1888, 1957, and present, as well as looking to the future and seeing Jesus in Adventist doctrines, mission and community. However, it did not take long into the first meeting to realize that Adventist history, from 1844 to present, would not be looked upon as a golden age, but one of failure beginning to end.
  • As we look now closer at the Seattle gathering to see what “conversations” took place, we need to remember that indeed the last day church is described as Laodicean and sees its self in totally different terms than the heavenly Witness. Ellen White also stated many times during her ministry that had Adventists done their appointed work they would have been in the heavenly kingdom. This is all true. However, we must allow the Bible to define what causes Laodicea’s condition and what the true remedy really is, otherwise we could very well be deceived by Satan's counterfeit call to repentance and his “new reformation.” All of this we must keep in mind as week continue. At the same time we must be clear that we are not judging the motives or sincere intent of those who sense a need for change in our church, a remedy for the Laodicean condition, but only question if the agenda of the Projects leaders as seen in their history is what our church really needs.
  • But if Adventism was spoken of in negative terms, past and present, there was one thing that was not criticized at the Seattle gathering and that was Emergent Church ideas, authors and books. In fact, if anything they were promoted. All the above books have received prominent exposure at Project gatherings thanks to the Project leaders. ReJesus and Next Christianswere given out or sold at the Atlanta One Project gathering in Feb. 2011. A copy of Simply Jesus and I Am a Follower, by Leonard Sweet, were given to each of the nearly 700 participants at the Seattle gathering in Feb. 2012. (The book 7 Keys for Finding Jesus in the Book of Revelation (2012), by Steve Case and Daniel Wysong was also given to each participant). For more information: ReJesus: A Wild Messiah for a Missional Church, by Michael Frost and Alan Hirsch (see presentation 5); The Next Christians: The Good News About the End of Christian America (2010), by Gabe Lyons (see presentation 5); Simply Jesus: A New Vision of Who He Was, What He Did, and Why He Matters (2006), by N. T. Wright (see presentation 6); I Am A Follower: The Way, Truth and Life of Following Jesus, (Jan. 2012), by Leonard Sweet (see presentation 4). Notice: “Leonard Sweet is a theological poet.”—Shane Claiborne. (on cover) “Its never been about leading”. (on cover at bottom). (http://www.amazon.com/ReJesus-Wild-Messiah-Missional-Church/product-reviews)(http://www.amazon.com/The-Next-Christians-Christian-America/product-reviews/)(http://www.amazon.com/Simply-Jesus-Vision-What-Matters/dp/0062084399) (http://www.amazon.com/Am-Follower-Truth-Following-Jesus/product-reviews/)
  • But if Adventism was spoken of in negative terms, past and present, there was one thing that was not criticized at the Seattle gathering and that was Emergent Church ideas, authors and books. In fact, if anything they were promoted. All the above books have received prominent exposure at Project gatherings thanks to the Project leaders. ReJesus and Next Christianswere given out or sold at the Atlanta One Project gathering in Feb. 2011. A copy of Simply Jesus and I Am a Follower, by Leonard Sweet, were given to each of the nearly 700 participants at the Seattle gathering in Feb. 2012. (The book 7 Keys for Finding Jesus in the Book of Revelation (2012), by Steve Case and Daniel Wysong was also given to each participant). For more information: ReJesus: A Wild Messiah for a Missional Church, by Michael Frost and Alan Hirsch (see presentation 5); The Next Christians: The Good News About the End of Christian America (2010), by Gabe Lyons (see presentation 5); Simply Jesus: A New Vision of Who He Was, What He Did, and Why He Matters (2006), by N. T. Wright (see presentation 6); I Am A Follower: The Way, Truth and Life of Following Jesus, (Jan. 2012), by Leonard Sweet (see presentation 4). (http://the1project.smugmug.com/Gatherings/Gatherings/22376237_dK9fpF#!i=1789197460&k=hjHT2KW)(http://the1project.smugmug.com/Gatherings/Seattle/22409901_rhnMRf#!i=1795495386&k=BRm5Sbk&lb=1&s=XL)(http://the1project.smugmug.com/Gatherings/Seattle/22409901_rhnMRf#!i=1795495417&k=66Hn5pw&lb=1&s=L)(http://the1project.smugmug.com/Gatherings/Seattle/22409901_rhnMRf#!i=1795495401&k=Hbz6DV5)
  • Other evidence was seen in the Seattle gathering booklet. Page 62 explained that such books were given to each participant paid for by registration fees. Leonard Sweet was quoted on page 105 from his newly released book, I Am a Follower. Sweet’s concepts also seemed to pop up in other places in the booklet and in the presentations at the gathering. This makes perfect sense when we remember that 4 of the 5 main leaders of the Project graduated from George Fox University under Leonard Sweet (see presentations 6 -9). The “philosophy” of the One Project is based on many of the Emerging Church authors (see presentation 5).
  • Other evidence was seen in the Seattle gathering booklet. Page 62 explained that such books were given to each participant paid for by registration fees. Leonard Sweet was quoted on page 105 from his newly released book, I Am a Follower. Sweet’s concepts also seemed to pop up in other places in the booklet and in the presentations at the gathering. This makes perfect sense when we remember that 4 of the 5 main leaders of the Project graduated from George Fox University under Leonard Sweet (see presentations 6 -9). The “philosophy” of the One Project is based on many of the Emerging Church authors (see presentation 5). Yes it is true, a true leader needs to be a follower of Jesus, but Sweets concepts in I Am a Follower go far beyond that (see presentation 4).
  • John McLarty however, sheds even more light on this issue, indicating that Alex Bryan made it a specific emphasis of his presentation to question Adventism’s supposed culture of turning away from non-Adventist authors.
  • John McLarty however, sheds even more light on this issue, indicating that Alex Bryan made it a specific emphasis of his presentation to question Adventism’s culture of turning away from non-Adventist authors. Alex used the analogy of the Adventist Hymnal, which has hymns written by many non-Adventists. The question was than ask if it would be a better book without all those other hymns. Although a very well thought out presentation, it takes only a few moments of reflection to see many serious flaws begin to surface when this analogy is drawn out to mean that Adventist should therefore use and promote Emerging Church authors so prominent in the Evangelical world today in order to be relevant.
  • Although mention is made about attendees reading The Desire of Ages and the four Gospels before coming to the One Project gatherings, and in order to “grasp” the “current journey” the Project is on, it seems that neither were promoted at the gathering during the presentations themselves. This of course brought about the question among some attendees of whether the advertising for the gathering was misleading (see below). At the same time the gathering appears to have been employed to continue the promotion of non-Adventist Emerging Church authors that most of the Project leaders have grown sympathetic to through their past education and ministry experiences (see presentation 5-9). (Ansel Oliver, “’One Project’ Focuses on Adventists’ Relationship With Jesus,” Adventist Review, March 15, 2012, pp. 10-12)
  • Alex Bryan continues to promote his view points about non-Adventist Emerging Church authors, across the country and around the globe, through the One Project and through other speaking engagements. Thursday, Nov. 1, 2012 he presented at Southwestern Adventist University assembly, and again for Friday night worship, Nov. 2. What aspects he shared about the Project’s agenda were not posted but it seems that his philosophy is rapidly spreading.(http://spirituallife.site.swau.edu/ministries/friday-night-worship-2/)(http://southwesterner.swau.edu/?p=4297)
  • (We will diverge from the One Project for a moment to look at how far the Emerging Church influence has come into the Adventist church and the response of the Review editor Bill Knott.)Eric Anderson is President of Southwestern Adventist University. Whether he picked up on Alex Bryan’s concepts through the One Project, or through Bryan’s presentations at Southwestern in November 2012, or whether he has just come to similar views on his own, Anderson very openly expressed a culmination of Emerging Church ideas similar to that of Bryan’s in this front page article of the Adventist Review. Notice the connection of his thoughts and the amalgamation of word definitions.
  • Eric Anderson is President of Southwestern Adventist University. Whether he picked up on Alex Bryan’s concepts through the One Project, or through Bryan’s presentations at Southwestern in November 2012, or whether he has just come to similar views on his own, Anderson very openly expressed a culmination of Emerging Church ideas similar to that of Bryan’s in this front page article of the Adventist Review. Notice the connection of his thoughts and the amalgamation of word definitions.Anderson has an endnote which reads in part: “‘Mystical’ and ‘mysticism’ almost always connote a nonbiblical and theoretical speculation that is opposed to the Word of God. Her insistence that each believer needs a personal spiritual encounter and relationship with God makes the term as I have defined it appropriate to describe her.” Thus Anderson has redefined the term and then applied it to Ellen White’s writings. Will this only blur the lines and confuse the reader to his not so subtle attempts to bring non-Adventist mysticism into our church?
  • Eric Anderson also uses the same hymnal analogy that Alex Bryan has so freely used at The One Project gatherings while promoting the idea that we need to be using non-Adventist Emerging Church authors. What are the “practices” that Anderson is talking about?
  • Anderson then shares his own personal experience. Is this really what our Adventist Review readership needs to be reading? Is this the direction that Adventism needs to go? Is this the answer for our Laodicean condition?
  • It did not take long for responses to come into the Review against Anderson’s article. Even with the Review’s questionable policy with “Letters to the Editor” (see below), they still published several condemnatory responses.
  • It did not take long for responses to come into the Review against Anderson’s article. Even with the Review’s questionable policy with “Letters to the Editor” (see below), they still published several condemnatory responses. The Online version of the Review ‘s “Letters” section had the caption for these responses as “What is a Christian?” But Anderson’s article was “What is a Mystic?” Are the two words synonymous? Anderson and the Review would apparently like us to believe so.
  • The Online version of the Review ‘s “Letters” section had the caption for these responses as “What is a Christian?” But Anderson’s article was “What is a Mystic?” Are the two words synonymous? Anderson and the Review would apparently like us to believe so.
  • The Online version of the Review ‘s “Letters” section had the caption for these responses as “What is a Christian?” But Anderson’s article was “What is a Mystic?” Are the two words synonymous? Anderson and the Review would apparently like us to believe so.
  • The Reviewalso published several supportive Letters. The same shallow support for using mystical writers found in Anderson’s article are also found in these letters.
  • Its seems that letters continued to come in to the Review regarding Anderson’s article. We have no way of knowing how many others came to the Review that were not published.
  • Its seems that letters continued to come in to the Review regarding Anderson’s article. We have no way of knowing how many others came to the Review that were not published.
  • Its seems that letters continued to come in to the Review regarding Anderson’s article. We have no way of knowing how many others came to the Review that were not published. Even the Associate Director of the Ellen G. White Estate wrote her disapproval of the article, pointing out that Anderson was misleading in trying to make Ellen White say that which she never did.
  • Two months later and letters to the editor continued to come into the Review in response to Anderson’s article. The Review published just one of these letters of concern in the March 14 print issue, but it was surrounded by two very supportive letters. This being the same week that Bill Knott’s editorial handed out scathing rebukes to the “little minds” of those who had concerns, it would seem that the “Letters” section was designed to support such a premise.
  • Two months later and letters to the editor continued to come into the Review in response to Anderson’s article. The Review published just one of these letters of concern in the March 14 print issue, but it was surrounded by two very supportive letters. This being the same week that Bill Knott’s editorial handed out scathing rebukes to the “little minds” of those who had concerns, it would seem that the “Letters” section was designed to support such a premise. The Online edition listed this letter of concern (different from the print edition) but had the following response from the “editors”:“Your concerns have their place. Anderson’s article clearly acknowledges the term’s potential problems. Is it not still true that in prayer and meditation we are intimately engaged with the God who is Spirit, and Who is Lord and Creator of the vast universe?—The Editors” (http://www.adventistreview.org/article/6009/archives/issue-2013-1503/web-letters)
  • The first letter listed in the previous slide was the only letter of concern published in the March 14 print edition and couched between these two letters of support. The second supportive letter to the Editor listed here was found first on the online edition of the Feb. 21 issue, but was latter added to the this March 14 print edition, the same week Bill Knott shared his cynical editorial (see below). The letter was written by someone at the Seminary, and seemed to be in response to some of the letters of concern written prior. What will be the influence on future generations of young people?
  • This letter to the Editor was found first on the online edition of the Feb. 21 issue, but was latter added to this March 14 print edition, the same week Bill Knott shared his cynical editorial (see below). The letter was written by someone at the Seminary, and seemed to be in response to some of the letters of concern written prior. What will be the influence on future generations of young people?
  • This supportive Letter to the editor was posted under Web Letters for the March 14 online edition. The letter didn’t show up in print however, until the March 21st issue (after Bill Knot’s scathing March 14 Editorial), but with some interesting editorial changes. The statement: “I commend the Adventist Review….” found in this March 14 Web Letters editionswas changed to: “I highly commend editor Bill Knott….” in the March 21st print issue. How did Merle Whitney really write the letter? Was the letter edited like that in the March 21st issue to help buoy up the Editor after his accusatory remarks?
  • The Editor finally responded, obviously tired of all the letters speaking against the “What is a Mystic?” article. In the March 14, 2013 issue Bill Knott’s editorial not only took exception to the negative letters but lashed out against what he called the “simple minded,” “fringe” minority of “anti-intellectuals” who were “too afraid to read.”(http://www.adventistreview.org/issue.php?issue=2013-1507&page=6)
  • The Editor finally responded, obviously tired of all the letters speaking against the “What is a Mystic?” article. In the March 14, 2013 issue Bill Knott’s editorial not only took exception to the negative letters but lashed out against what he called the “simple minded,” “fringe” minority of “anti-intellectuals” who were “too afraid to read.”His editorial was written with several quotes from non-SDA writers followed by his sarcastic remarks about those who have concerns about such authors. But his comments were built on straw men, misrepresentations, and overstatements.
  • The first statement was published only in the web issue for March 21st. The second “Letter” by Daniel Winters in the March 21 print edition was a repeat of the same letter as found in the Feb. 14, 2013 print issue.
  • This supportive Letter to the editor was posted under Web Letters for the March 14 online edition. The letter didn’t show up in print however, until this March 21st issue (after Bill Knot’s scathing March 14 Editorial), but with some interesting editorial changes. The statement: “I commend the Adventist Review….” found in the March 14 Letters of the Web editionwas changed to: “I highly commend editor Bill Knott….” in this March 21st print issue. How did Merle Whitney really write the letter? Was the letter edited like that in the March 21st issue to help buoy up the Editor after his accusatory remarks?
  • Reading the Editorial by Bill Knott (above) leads me to wonder if the Associate Director of the White Estate, who’s letter of concern is also quoted above, is among the “minority” of “misguided fringes” of Adventism, who have “little minds” and are full of “anti-intellectualism” and “too fearful to read”? And what about the General ConferencePresident, Ted Wilson, who had the following to say during his Sabbath sermon at the Oct. 2012 Autumn Council; is he among this shallow minded group which Bill Knott speaks of?
  • “On Sabbath, October 13, 2012, General Conference President Pastor Ted N.C. Wilson appealed to Seventh-day Adventists to unite in spreading the three angels’ messages to a chaotic and dying world, during a sermon at the world headquarters of the movement in Silver Spring, Maryland.”Reading the Editorial by Bill Knott (above) leads me to wonder if the Associate Director of the White Estate, who’s letter of concern is also quoted above, is among the “minority” of “misguided fringes” of Adventism, who have “little minds” and are full of “anti-intellectualism” and “too fearful to read”? And what about the General ConferencePresident, Ted Wilson, who had the following to say during his Sabbath sermon at the Oct. 2012 Autumn Council; is he among this shallow minded group which Bill Knott speaks of?
  • But Alex Bryan had more to talk about at the Seattle gathering than the need for Adventists to read non-Adventist Emerging Church authors.Playing off the ideas of George Knight Alex Bryan reviewed the history behind Questions on Doctrine. He built on the idea that in 1957 Adventism was seeking to escape the common view that we were a cult and not part of the Christian world. Bryan then suggested that QOD didn’t stir up problems as much as it uncovered a crisis in Adventism that had existed from its very beginning, a crisis of its identity. How should Adventists relate to the Christian world, being peculiar, unique and the Remnant? Now however, Bryan feels that it time to take a new direction, putting aside our questions about our purpose and identity and asking instead “who Jesus is.” He then illustrated this by suggesting that the Adventist Church is only one piece of a 3000 piece puzzle of religions that represent the total picture of Jesus. Thus we need to be concerned not on our identity but Jesus which we have common with the world.(http://the1project.smugmug.com/Gatherings/Seattle/22409901_rhnMRf#!i=1795279844&k=xgfGZfw&lb=1&s=X2)(http://the1project.smugmug.com/Gatherings/Seattle/22409901_rhnMRf#!i=1795284497&k=3gkSVWW)
  • After all the presentations, Alex Bryan’s included, the table “conversations” would continue with discussions meant to help “Recalibrate” through guided questions made available in the gathering booklet. Many of these questions carried the same theme of questioning Adventism's identity as Alex Bryan and the other One Project presenters had done.
  • After all the presentations, Alex Bryan’s included, the table “conversations” would continue with discussions meant to help “Recalibrate” through guided questions made available in the gathering booklet. Many of these questions carried the same theme of questioning Adventism's identity as Alex Bryan and the other One Project presenters. Although there are some aspects of these questions that are good to ask ourselves, in the context of the One Project, these questions seem to be leading toward an ecumenical theme and away from any Remnant identity.
  • The negative feelings expressed toward the idea of the Remnant church also seemed to spill over into the area of Adventist doctrine or doctrines in general. A hint of this is seen in the March 15, 2012 Adventist Review , and more clearly in John McLarty’s article for Adventist Today. Both these articles shed further light on the overall theme of the presentations and the conversations that followed. (Ansel Oliver, “’One Project’ Focuses on Adventists’ Relationship With Jesus,” Adventist Review, March 15, 2012, pp. 10-12)(http://www.atoday.org/ article/1031/news/2012/ february-headlines/the-one-project-gathering-in-seattle-attracts-700)
  • The negative feelings expressed toward the idea of the Remnant church also seemed to spill over into the area of Adventist doctrine or doctrines in general. A hint of this is seen in the March 15, 2012 Adventist Review , and more clearly in John McLarty’s article for Adventist Today. Both these articles shed further light on the overall theme of the presentations and the conversations that followed. (NPUC Gleaner, April 2012, pp. 1, 22, 26)(Ansel Oliver, “’One Project’ Focuses on Adventists’ Relationship With Jesus,” Adventist Review, March 15, 2012, pp. 10-12)
  • Table conversations following some of the presentations took concepts shared to a logical conclusion. Two articles in Spectrum revealed some of the thoughts of participants following Alex Bryan and Mark Witas’ presentations.
  • Table conversations following some of the presentations took concepts shared to a logical conclusion. Two articles in Spectrum revealed thought of participants following Alex Bryan and Mark Witas’ presentations.
  • Table conversations following some of the presentations took concepts shared to a logical conclusion. Two articles in Spectrum revealed thought of participants following Alex Bryan and Mark Witas’ presentations.
  • John McLarty brings out another hot topic which was discussed by many of the One Project presenters at the Seattle gathering—Women’s Ordination. (http://www.atoday.org/ article/1031/news/2012/ february-headlines/the-one-project-gathering-in-seattle-attracts-700)
  • John McLarty brings out another hot topic which was discussed by many of the One Project presenters at the Seattle gathering—Women’s Ordination. The problem is that the topic was really not discussed by going over the different views held within the Adventist church and the reasons why (something you would expect in a “conversation”). Instead there were pot shots taken at the Adventist Church for its historic stance which is seen as contrary to the mores of current society. Adventism is described as “exclusive,” as have policies not supported by Jesus. 17 year old Ellen White was even described as holding a position of “pastoral leadership.” Some appeared to expressed their feelings with anger. Other’s just matter of fact.
  • According to John McLarty, some participants at the Seattle gathering were puzzled over a discrepancy between what was advertised about the One Project (“A two day conversation about Jesus”), and what really took place (a two day venting about issues particularly of concern to progressive/liberal Adventists). McLarty’s take was that most everyone agreed with the views taken on issues, but some felt it was not the place to deal with them. He also suggested that it was only the older folks that had concerns and not the younger generation. This might shed some light on why the One Project is being geared toward young people on our Adventist campuses. In regard to John Freedman, Washington Conference president, The NAD Gleaner article gave the impression that he was in full support of the entire One Project emphasis (see slide 13 above). The Adventist Today article, however, indicated that Freedman was not comfortable with how the Project had been misleading in its advertising.
  • John McLarty continues with the response of Alex Bryan to the concerns of some that making Women’s ordination the message of The One Project was misleading compared to the way the event was advertised. It is clear from Bryan’s response that he sees the One Project as a messenger to the Church with the message for this time.
  • Alex Bryan also posted on his own personal blog his reflections of the Seattle gathering with similar thoughts. (this blog has since been removed and was scanned in here). The one subject that Alex highlights here as a “major theme of the Seattle presentations” was the issue of women’s ordination. Once again this is a totally different description of the gathering from that presented in the Churches official papers like the Adventist Review and Gleaner. (http://breakfastfires.blogspot.com/2012/03/taking-one-seriously.html [no longer on the web])
  • Alex Bryan also posted on his own personal blog his reflections of the Seattle gathering with similar thoughts. (this blog has since been removed and was scanned in here). The one subject that Alex highlights here as a “major theme of the Seattle presentations” was the issue of women’s ordination. Once again this is a totally different description of the gathering from that presented in the Churches official papers like the Adventist Review and Gleaner.
  • Alex Bryan has been pushing the issue of women’s “equality” and women’s ordination for some time. Back in 2008, less than a year after he returned to Adventist employment from his failed Church plant (see presentation 6), Alex did a survey in his class at Southern University, the results of which were alarming to him. He posted these results on his blog (which has since been removed), expressing how he feels Adventism needs to change.
  • Alex Bryan has been pushing the issue of women’s “equality” and women’s ordination for some time. Back in 2008, less than a year after he returned to Adventist employment from his Church plant (see presentation 6), Alex did a survey in his class at Southern University, the results of which were alarming to him. He posted these results on his blog (since been removed), expressing how he feels Adventism needs to change. Why are some in Adventism trying to take on the same controversies found in the Christian world?
  • With all the above venting against the Church by the leaders of the One Project, there seemed to be both in print and during their presentations an almost over emphasis at times, assuring everyone that they really did have great love for the Adventist Church. (Ansel Oliver, “’One Project’ Focuses on Adventists’ Relationship With Jesus,” Adventist Review, March 15, 2012, pp. 10-12)(http://the1project.org/why.html)(http://the1project.org/blog/one-project-reflections-by-alex.html)(http://www.atoday.org/ article/1031/news/2012/ february-headlines/the-one-project-gathering-in-seattle-attracts-700)
  • With all the above venting against the Church by the leaders of the One Project, there seemed to be both in print and during their presentations an almost over emphasis at times, assuring everyone that they really did have great love for the Adventist Church.
  • Yet even with all the assurance of love for the Church by One Project presenters, there still must have been at least some with serious questions about the gathering. Jules Johnson from the Spectrum perspective seemed to think that those with concerns were unjustified. John McLarty of Adventist Today was more congenial but chalked it up to the older generation’s concerns.
  • Nathan Brown, also from Adventist Today perspective and overall supportive of the Project, after attending the Seattle gathering and the Sydney gathering recognized not only that some had concerns, but he also suggested there was a possible reason for such.
  • While a tearful call was made from a Project leader to treat each other with kindness, the One Project has seemed to place itself in a certain context which does little to encourage such. In a Spectrum article about the One Project, the picture used to illustrate the purpose of the Project is of Jesus cleansing the temple. What is this stating about the One Project—the “Jesus followers”—and the church leadership which they are often in cahoots with? One should remember, however, that Jesus cleansed the temple from Priests and rulers, which were made up of more Sadducees than Pharisees.
  • Many similar examples could be given of articles written about the One Project and it’s leaders which seem to place them on a pedestal above other Adventists—those who have all the answers for what ails Adventism. In the Seattle gathering booklet they compare themselves to Elijah, assuring participants that there are others (7000) like them (who have not bowed the knee to baal?). Andrews University News compared the seven initial project leaders to Jesus disciples. Of course, where does all of this put anyone else who might question some of the Project’s agendas?
  • In the early days of The One Project, the claims made by the Project leaders were that it was a movement directed toward the entire church. This seems to be the case with the Seattle gathering where a large number of NAD pastors and leadership were invited to attend along with young people from our university campuses. However, as time has passed it has seemed more plausible that the movement is primarily aimed at Adventist young people and is being promoted through our Universities. The fact is that most of the Project leaders are located on University campuses. At the same time it has also been more than apparent, particularly on the progressive web sites of Adventist Today and Spectrum Magazine, that The One Project is in fact a rivalry against the GYC youth movement. (http://www.andrews.edu/news/2011/03/one_project.html)(http://www.atoday.org/article/1024/news/2012/february-headlines/the-one-project-focuses-on-the-one-at-the-center-of-adventist-faith)(http://www.atoday.org/article/1322/blogs/brown-nathan/2012/a-second-look-at-the-one-project)
  • In the early days of The One Project, the claims made by the Project leaders were that it was a movement directed toward the entire church. This seems to be the case with the Seattle gathering where a large number of NAD pastors and leadership were invited to attend along with young people from our university campuses. However, as time has passed it has seemed more plausible that the movement is primarily aimed at Adventist young people and is being promoted through our Universities. The fact is that most of the Project leaders are located on University campuses. At the same time it has also been more than apparent, particularly on the progressive web sites of Adventist Today and Spectrum Magazine, that The One Project is in fact a rivalry against the GYC youth movement. Ervin Taylor, Ph.D., is professor emeritus of anthropology at the University of California, Riverside. He is also a long-time supporter, executive publisher, and contributor to the “progressive” journal Adventist Today. He has also been very active in supporting La Sierra University’s teaching of evolution as fact. Taylor has also been very outspoken against Ellen White.
  • Although the stated goals lead us to believe the Project is directed toward youth, the first gatherings have invited many in NAD, SPD, and European leadership to come and take part. Yet some have asked rather searching questions, like the following taken from comments on an Adventist Today blog post following an article on The One Project’s meeting in Australia in July 2012.
  • AYC= Australian Youth Congress. Although the stated goals lead us to believe the Project is directed toward youth, the first gatherings have invited many in NAD, SPD, and European leadership to come and take part. Yet some have asked rather searching questions, like the following taken from comments on an Adventist Today blog post following an article on The One Project’s meeting in Australia in July 2012.
  • It would appear that the Project’s agendas is to take the One Project across the country to our University campuses, and not just share at the yearly gatherings. Alex Bryan had posted on his blog all the places he was being asked to speak, and listed them under the heading of “Some Places of Conversation” (this blog format has since been changed and the list removed). Many of these places of conversation are taking place at Adventist Colleges and Universities or in other setting directed toward young Adventists. Alex made a similar list in a letter to Max Torkelson, North Pacific Union President, sometime in July, 2012, following his failure to be elected at Walla Walla University President. (breakfastfires.blogspot.com/2009_02_03_archives.html)(Alex Bryan to Max Torkelson, July 2012)
  • It would appear that the Project’s agendas is to take the One Project across the country to our University campuses, and not just share at the yearly gatherings. Alex Bryan had posted on his blog all the places he was being asked to speak, and listed them under the heading of “Some Places of Conversation” (this blog format has since been changed and the list removed). Many of these places of conversation are taking place at Adventist Colleges and Universities or in other setting directed toward young Adventists. Alex made a similar list in a letter to Max Torkelson, North Pacific Union President, sometime in July, 2012, following his failure to be elected at Walla Walla University President. (Alex Bryan to Max Torkelson, July 2012)
  • Alex invited the One Project team to Walla Walla University to give their Fall 2012 Week of Worship. The theme was Jesus. All. It would seem that even if young people don’t attend The One Project gatherings, the same “conversation” will be brought to the whole student body at our Universities. When Alex gave his talks at Southwestern Adventist University in November 2012, his topic was again The One Project. Of course we would not suggest that everything presented at the One Project gatherings are wrong, or that the Adventist church has no need to lift up Jesus more, but we would question whether the One Project has a true sense of what ails us as a people and the correct remedies as found in Revelation 3 .
  • The Project website identifies “conversations” as one of the avenues of spreading the Project’s ideas through Adventism. More forms of “conversations” are planned for the Chicago 2013 gathering. One form is where only 8 participants will take part in “conversations” directed by each Project leader. While the descriptions of the topics may be relevant to talk about, what direction are the Project leaders leaning toward through these various “conversations”?(http://the1project.org/why.html)(http://the1project.org/chicago-2013/conversations.html)
  • The Project website identifies “conversations” as one of the avenues of spreading the Project’s ideas through Adventism. More forms of “conversations” are planned for the Chicago 2013 gathering. One form is where only 8 participants will take part in “conversations” directed by each Project leader. While the descriptions of the topics may be relevant to talk about, what direction are the Project leaders leaning toward through these various “conversations”? Obviously the presenter’s past experience will effect the way their topic is presented. (see presentations 5 – 9)
  • The Project website identifies “conversations” as one of the avenues of spreading the Project’s ideas through Adventism. More forms of “conversations” are planned for the Chicago 2013 gathering. One form is where only 8 participants will take part in “conversations” directed by each Project leader. While the descriptions of the topics may be relevant to talk about, what direction are the Project leaders leaning toward through these various “conversations”? Obviously the presenter’s past experience will effect the way their topic is presented. (see presentations 5 – 9)
  • The Seattle 2014 Gathering also plans to have for the first time “carefully selected speakers from other Christian traditions” share about “the One.”From September 2013 One Project email.http://theoneproject.createsend1.com/t/ViewEmail/r/1CE54BA9A69444AD2540EF23F30FEDED/CF4818127AA2AC3D405DC10595964AA8
  • The Seattle 2014 Gathering also plans to have for the first time “carefully selected speakers from other Christian traditions” share about “the One.”From September 2013 One Project email.http://theoneproject.createsend1.com/t/ViewEmail/r/1CE54BA9A69444AD2540EF23F30FEDED/CF4818127AA2AC3D405DC10595964AA8
  • The Seattle 2014 Gathering also plans to have for the first time “carefully selected speakers from other Christian traditions” share about “the One.” For this 2014 gathering none other than Leonard Sweet will be present to share from his “Christian Tradition” which is steeped in mysticism and pantheism. The One Project in a few short years is truly Emerging. http://the1project.org/seattle-schedule2014.html
  • But how will the “conversations” continue in the future? Will there still be a reliance on Emerging Church books and their philosophy in the future One Project gatherings? Will the leaders who have all been heavily influenced by these Emerging Church concepts continue to move toward a “New Reformation” in Adventism? Will this move really be in the right direction or toward the ecumenical Evangelical world? For more information: ReJesus: A Wild Messiah for a Missional Church, by Michael Frost and Alan Hirsch (see presentation 5); The Next Christians: The Good News About the End of Christian America (2010), by Gabe Lyons (see presentation 5); Simply Jesus: A New Vision of Who He Was, What He Did, and Why He Matters (2006), by N. T. Wright (see presentation 6); I Am A Follower: The Way, Truth and Life of Following Jesus, (Jan. 2012), by Leonard Sweet (see presentation 4). Notice: “Leonard Sweet is a theological poet.”—Shane Claiborne. (on cover) “Its never been about leading”. (on cover at bottom); Nudge: Awakening Each Other to the God Who’s Already There (2010), by Leonard Sweet (see Presentation 4, and 8); Jesus Manifesto: Restoring the Supremacy and Sovereignty of Jesus Christ, (2010), by Leonard Sweet and Frank Viola (see presentations 3, 6 and 7). (http://www.amazon.com/ReJesus-Wild-Messiah-Missional-Church/product-reviews)(http://www.amazon.com/The-Next-Christians-Christian-America/product-reviews/)(http://www.amazon.com/Simply-Jesus-Vision-What-Matters/dp/0062084399) (http://www.amazon.com/Am-Follower-Truth-Following-Jesus/product-reviews/)(http://apprising.org/2010/09/13/giving-leonard-sweet-a-nudge/)(http://www.amazon.com/ Jesus-Manifesto-Restoring-Supremacy-Sovereignty/ product-reviews)
  • As we close this series on the Emerging Church and The One Project, we need to review how the “conversation” has been used by the Emerging Church movement over the past twenty years (next 5 slides). Then we need to ask ourselves if the One Project, lead by many who have been immersed in the Emerging Church movement (see presentations 5-9), are leading One Project participants into similar “conversations” based on these concepts? As a review let us look at what Wikipedia has listed about the “Emerging Church” and “conversations” (this is taken from presentation 1).
  • As a review let us look at what Wikipedia has listed about the “Emerging Church” and “conversations” (this is taken from presentation 1). Is there any similarities between what is taking place in the Emerging Church movement and how the One Project gatherings are being presented?
  • Roger Oakland has also dealt with this aspect of the Emerging Church in his book, Faith Undone: The Emerging Church … A New Reformation or an End-time Deception (2007)
  • Roger Oakland has also dealt with this aspect of the Emerging Church in his book, Faith Undone: The Emerging Church … A New Reformation or an End-time Deception (2007)In his introduction to the book Roger Oakland expresses the reasons why he took the time to write it. It was the theological issues of the “new reformation.” But notice how the movement is couched in “conversations.” It’s not necessarily the format of the gathering but the underlying theology that is driving it which should be of concern.
  • Roger Oakland has also dealt with this aspect of the Emerging Church in his book, Faith Undone: The Emerging Church … A New Reformation or an End-time Deception (2007)In his introduction to the book Roger Oakland expresses the reasons why he took the time to write it. It was the theological issues of the “new reformation.” But notice how the movement is couched in “conversations.” It’s not necessarily the format of the gathering but the underlying theology that is driving it which should be of concern.
  • (Review) But if the One Project is a mixture of ideas from the Emerging Church along with Adventism, what will be the end result?Notice how “dialogue” and “Conversation” fit into this idea of “Hegelian dialectic”. The Christian church is being told over and over that they have a problem. The Emerging Church claimed to be the solution which brought about conflict. Now books pointing to a third way. The point being that seeking a compromise between traditional church and emerging church, may in fact be actually another way of putting aside the created conflict to take a few more steps in an already intended direction. The Bible makes it clear that there is no mixture of truth and error. Its black and white. Yes, we are to seek how we might reach people in the world, but we are not to become in anyway like the world. The Hegelian dialecticis the framework for guiding our thoughts and actions into conflicts that lead us to a predetermined solution. http://www.crossroad.to/articles2/05/dialectic.htmDialectic (also dialectics and the dialectical method) is a method of argument for resolving disagreement that has been central to Indian and European philosophy since antiquity. The word dialectic originated in ancient Greece, and was made popular by Plato in the Socratic dialogues. The dialectical method is dialogue between two or more people holding different points of view about a subject, who wish to establish the truth of the matter by dialogue, with reasoned arguments.[1] Dialectics is different from debate, wherein the debaters are committed to their points of view, and mean to win the debate, either by persuading the opponent, proving their argument correct, or proving the opponent's argument incorrect – thus, either a judge or a jury must decide who wins the debate. Dialectics is also different from rhetoric, wherein the speaker uses logos, pathos, or ethos to persuade listeners to take their side of the argument. …Hegelian dialectic, usually presented in a threefold manner, was stated by Heinrich Moritz Chalybäusas comprising three dialectical stages of development: a thesis, giving rise to its reaction, an antithesis, which contradicts or negates the thesis, and the tension between the two being resolved by means of a synthesis. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dialectic) Basically, Hegel believed that history unfolds as a thesis is countered by an antithesis. Through persuasive argument, a synthesis is created which becomes a new thesis, countered by – you guessed it – an antithesis. This process continues until an “absolute idea” is created for which an antithesis cannot be formulated. Thus, society continues to progress toward’s Hegel’s ideal state. …According to the late Dr. Antony C. Sutton, Hegelian dialectic has also been used as a tactic to create war and revolution – “managed conflict” – throughout the world.7 Dr. Sutton suggested that this Marxist philosophy was at work in 1917′s Bolshevik Revolution, the rise of Hitler in pre-WWII Germany, and WWII. (http://www.believeallthings.com/1481/hegelian-dialectic/)
  • God has warned us in the past of a New Reformation movement that would seek to change Adventism. Written in the early 1900s, and in the context of Kellogg and the issue pantheism (alpha).
  • God has warned us in the past of a New Reformation movement that would seek to change Adventism. Written in the early 1900s, and in the context of Kellogg and the issue pantheism (alpha).
  • God has warned us in the past of a New Reformation movement that would seek to change Adventism. Written in the early 1900s, and in the context of Kellogg and the issue pantheism (alpha). Is it possible that the “New Reformation” she wrote about was a description of the Omega as well?

The emerging church and the one project part 10 The emerging church and the one project part 10 Presentation Transcript

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  •   ―We are committed to the idea that a Jesus-driven, Jesusbathed, Jesus-backed, Jesus-led, Jesus-filled, Jesus-powered, allabout-Jesus Adventist Church is the uncompromising directive from our past, the joy of our present, and hope for our future. We claim the Primal Adventist Impulse: a longing to be with Jesus. We believe pulpits, classrooms, worship halls, board rooms, living rooms - life! - should be drenched in the Spirit of Jesus.‖ ―We crave a ‗High Christology‘ - where Jesus is fully honored as Creator, Savior, and Lord. We believe Jesus is the hope of the First Testament and inspiration for the Second. Theology - the study of God - is at its best in dedicated exploration of Jesus, who is ‗the image of God.‘ We are convicted that he alone is The Desire of the Ages. All of them: the prelapsarian age and life after the fall; the antediluvian age and life after the flood; prehistoric times, the stone age, the classical age, the age of antiquity, the middle ages, the age of reason, the modern age and in this, our 21st Century Age. We love our church. And so we want the greatest gift for it... Jesus.‖ (http://the1project.org/why.html) 3
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  •    ―We began as a group of friends, exhausted and faintly seeking something that resembled our own answer to why it matters. We left as brothers, renewed, directed and inspired by the true why—Jesus. All.‖ ―That sacred echo was felt by everyone we spoke with. We are not alone—just like Jesus assured Elijah (1 Kings 19:18), there are countless others who beat with the same passion. All of you have invested time, resources, and energy in order to spend the next two days with no agenda but the joy of re-investing in Jesus.‖ ―We hope you use every moment to build new or refresh old community. That you leave this place knowing Jesus. All. That you know our church has something deeply unique to offer, and that is Jesus first. That we work together to that end in our spheres of influence, starting with our families and those we interact with. That we stand, arms linked, together stretched across the globe with that first-love passion for Jesus in our lives.‖ (―We‘re Serious About Jesus,‖ Seattle One Project Booklet, p. 6) 5
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  •  ―Partners: Special thanks to all our partners who help make the One Project gatherings possible. Their brave commitment to freedom in Jesus can be seen in their own stance and their support of us. If you are interested in being a partner, please contact us. Adventist Mission www.adventistmission.org AdventSource www.adventsource.org Andrews University Campus Ministry www.andrews.edu/life/spiritual Andrews University Theological Seminary www.andrews.edu/sem British Union Conference www.adventist.org.uk Center for Creative Ministry www.creativeministry.org Center for Secular and Post Modern Studies www.secularandpostmodern.com Center for Youth Evangelism www.cye.org Danish Union of Churches www.adventist.dk Finnish Union Conference www.adventist.fi Florida Hospital Church www.hospitalchurch.org Florida Hospital College of Health Sciences www.fhchs.edu Forest Lake Church www.forestlakechurch.com Fowler Films www.fowlerfilms.com General Conference Adventist Chaplaincy Ministries www.adventistchaplains.org‖ 7
  • ―General Conference Youth and Young Adult Department www.gc.bigfoottech.com North Rhine-Westphalia German Conference www.nrw.adventisten.de John Hancock Center www.lasierra.edu/centers/hcym Lake Union Conference www.lakeunion.org La Sierra University www.lasierra.edu Mid-America Union www.midamericaadventist.org NAD Resource Center www.vervent.org NAD Youth and Young Adult Department www.adventistyouthministries.org Netherlands Union Youth Department www.adventist.nl/ajv Power of One www.gc.bigfoottech.com RE:LIVE Ministry www.reliveministry.com Southern Adventist University Chaplain‘s Office www.southern.edu/chaplain Submerge www.submerge.net.au Union College www.ucollege.edu Vagabond Servant International www.24-seven.org/index.php/vagabondservant Washington Conference www.washingtonconference.org Walla Walla University Campus Ministry www.wallawalla.edu/life-at-wwu/campusministries/ Walla Walla University Church www.wwuchurch.org/‖ 8
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  •   ―This year‘s gathering of the One Project on February 13 and 14 brought more than 700 people to Seattle for conversations on practical applications of Jesus‘ ministry in their own lives, churches, and communities. De Oliveira hopes it‘s an environment in which people can honestly look at their own priorities, examine the core of Christianity, and promote Jesus in their theology as Seventh-day Adventists.‖ ―For that 2011 gathering in Atlanta, participants may not have fully understood what they were coming to, De Oliveira said. They were each asked to read the four Gospels and the book The Desire of Ages, authored by Adventist Church cofounder Ellen G. White.‖ (Ansel Oliver, ―‘One Project‘ Focuses on Adventists‘ Relationship With Jesus,‖ Adventist Review, March 15, 2012, pp. 10-12) 11
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  •     ―In a triple-size hotel ballroom in downtown Seattle, Wash., nearly 700 leaders reconnected with old friends and met new ministry partners. They formed small communities at round tables to talk for two days about one topic: Jesus. All. …‖ ―‘I wanted to experience a sense of community, get feedback, strengthen my spiritual walk and ignite new ideas,‘ says Jenny Welch, a church planter from Anacortes, Wash. …‖ ―‘The speakers repeatedly called for the church to make Jesus central in everything, from our preaching to our policy making, from our identity as a people to our message as an organization,‘ says John McLarty, North Hill Adventist Fellowship (Edgewood, Wash.) pastor. …‖ ―‘I enjoyed taking some of our young pastors to lunch and talking with them about their dreams for the Seventh-day Adventist Church,‘ says John Freedman, Washington Conference president, who was among 50 western Washington attendees at The One Project.‖ (Heidi Martella, ―Washington Leaders Join Jesus Conversation in Seattle,‖ Gleaner, April 2012, p. 22) 13
  •    ―More than 700 people, including a large group of Walla Walla University faculty, students and church members gathered for The One Project, … held in mid-February in Seattle, Wash. …‖ ―The One Project began only two years ago in a single hotel meeting room when [Alex] Bryan and four of his ministerial colleagues gathered in Denver, Colo., to reflect and focus on making Jesus primary in their lives. Since then the interest and attendance has been building, as they met in Atlanta, Ga., and Finland.‖ ―The conference attracted many young Adventists, including a number of students. Bridget Bechtel, a WWU senior … drove across Washington state to attend the event. ‗It was an amazing experience,‘ she says. ‗I loved how everything they mentioned was about Jesus. After a presenter spoke, we shared our thoughts about what was said, how it related to God, and how we could learn from it.‖ (Martin Surridge, ―The One Project—Seattle,‖ Gleaner, April 2012, p. 26) 14
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  •  ―The gathering combined meaningful times of worship with thought-provoking sermons on Jesus at crucial time periods in Adventist history and examined how to center Jesus in Adventist doctrine, mission and community.‖ (Heidi Martella, ―Washington Leaders Join Jesus Conversation in Seattle,‖ Gleaner, April 2012, p. 22)   ―Nolan Kinne, a WWU senior pre-med music major, originally attended the One Project because he was invited to play violin. However, he soon discovered that the event would be more than just about his musical performance.‖ ―‘It was like nothing I‘ve ever been to before,‘ Kinne says. ‗It wasn‘t a convention, and it wasn‘t a seminar. The leaders call it a gathering, and that is exactly what it felt like. It was a gathering of Seventh-day Adventists, placing Jesus at the center of our hearts and religion.‘‖ (Martin Surridge, ―The One Project—Seattle,‖ Gleaner, April 2012, p. 26) 16
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  •   ―The One Project is short on programming and long on discussions. De Oliveira says the event format grew out of his wish to make a gathering similar to the best part of the numerous conferences he attends each year—talking with people individually. A small stage is set in the middle of a banquet room, and speakers are allowed 20 minutes to present. The event is then geared toward the 40 minutes of discussion at each table following the speaker.‖ ―‘I go to so many conferences and so many meetings, and honestly, the best part is meeting with someone over lunch,‘ De Oliveira said. ‗We didn‘t want to have another event that‘s packed with programming all day.‘‖ (Ansel Oliver, ―‘One Project‘ Focuses on Adventists‘ Relationship With Jesus,‖ Adventist Review, March 15, 2012, pp. 10-12) 19
  •     ―The original five [leaders of the One Project] were De Oliveira; Leonor; Alex Bryan…; Tim Gillespie…; and Terry Swenson…. ‗It was a real honest conversation,‘ De Oliveira said. ‘Some crying and a lot of praying. We said, ―Let‘s do this at least once a year.‖‘ The group agreed to meet annually to focus on Jesus. Each invited friends for a similar meeting the following year in Atlanta. More than 170 people showed up. … The invitation then was simply, ‗Come have a two-day conversation about Jesus.‘‖ ―This year‘s gathering of the One Project on February 13 and 14 brought more than 700 people to Seattle for conversations on practical applications of Jesus‘ ministry in their own lives. … For some it‘s a place to challenge and even question one‘s own beliefs.‖ ―‗We‘re trying to create a safe place to say Jesus is the center of our church and always has been,‘ said De Oliveira, chaplain for missions at Andrews University in Berrien Springs, Michigan. He‘s especially looking to support those who may become frustrated with the church. ‗We love our church. I really do believe that God has called the Seventh-day Adventist Church, and I‘m tired of losing people when we work so hard to bring them in,‘ he said.‖ ―The Conversation continues later this year in Australia and Denmark, and next year in Chicago.‖ (http://www.adventistreview.org/article/5193/archives/issue2012-1508/08cn-one-project-focuses-on-adventists-relationship-with-jesus) 20
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  •    ―The One Project, a gathering to celebrate the supremacy of Jesus in the Adventist Church, brings together young adults and church leaders for conversations on the practical application of Jesus‘ ministry in their own lives, churches and communities. …‖ ―‘[The One Project] is a time to reset ourselves in Jesus Christ and associate with people whose hope is in Jesus Christ,‘ says Japhet De Oliveira, gathering coorganizer. ‗This is a gathering that provides space for leaders from all walks of life to pause and enter deep conversations on Jesus.‘‖ ―Community-building small-group discussions following the keynote presentations branched into hallway chats, lunchtime conversations, evening talks and social-media interactions. … The conversations generated in Seattle are continuing informally here at home and formally in Europe, Australia and other cities in the United States. Explore more at www.the1project.org.‖ (Heidi Martella, ―Washington Leaders Join Jesus Conversation in Seattle,‖ Gleaner, April 2012, p. 22) 22
  •    ―More than 700 people … gathered for The One Project, a time of discussion-based programing and inspirational worship….‖ ―‗It was good to engage in fresh conversation with one another and to celebrate communion as one body,‘ says Alex Bryan, WWU Church senior pastor. ‗There was, and continues to be, a sense that God is up to something special in this young movement.‘‖ ―Nolan Kinne, a WWU senior pre-med music major, originally attended The One Project because he was invited to play violin. However, he soon discovered that the event would be more than just about his musical performance. … Kinne also spoke to the value of being exposed to other views on important ideas, after he sat and discussed each new topic with a diverse group of people. Like many who attended, Kinne came away from the experience thinking about how churches could revolutionize their communities if the words of Jesus were fully implemented.‖ (Martin Surridge, ―The One Project—Seattle,‖ Gleaner, April 2012, p. 26) 23
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  •   ―Facilitators’ Guide: Welcome to the One project! We, first of all, want to thank you for being willing to participate in facilitating these ever important Jesus. All. Discussion groups. Your presence, prayers, and leadership are valued and respected in this gathering. Thank you for your commitment to joining us in the journey for JESUS to be ALL in the Seventhday Adventist Church. …‖ ―Facilitator Tips: • • • • • Prayerfully enter your group into discussions. Create a ―safe‖ environment for people to share their thoughts/questions without judgment. Help the conversations to flow and not stagnate within the amount of time given. Make sure everyone gets the opportunity to contribute to the discussion. Focus on positive and constructive topics. (―Facilitators‘ Guide,‖ Seattle One Project Booklet, p. 68) 27
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  •   ―In this issue we remember Raymond Forrest Cottrell. My personal acquaintance with him was meager, but as I have listened to those who knew him well, I have been struck by his prophetic function. Cottrell was thoroughly committed to this community. . . .‖ ―When he became convinced that our traditional interpretation of Daniel 8 could not be supported by sound methods of exegesis, he worked to change our interpretation. When he found logical and theological holes in our official stance on the origin of life he had to speak up. When he saw women treated unjustly in the name of a flawed doctrine of ordination, he was not silent. He did what prophets do: He challenged the status quo. He rocked the boat. . . . The church tests prophets over time. But it is the visions of the prophets that move the church forward.‖ (John Mclarty, ―Notes From the Editor: The community and Its Prophets,‖ Adventist Today, Jan. – Feb. 2003, p. 2) 30
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  •   ―Because they are Adventists, they believe what the Adventist Church teaches about this obscure Bible passage. Because they are pastors they do not preach on 1844, because it is not helpful in providing spiritual care for real people in the real world. In some ways 1844 functions like the appendix in the human body. We can‘t deny it‘s there, but we don‘t know what it‘s good for. . . .‖ ―Eighteen-forty-four poses a curious problem. If you question it, you will be expelled as a heretic. If you give it much attention you will be shunned as a troublesome zealot. It is a doctrine that is best believed and ignored. The Bible clearly teaches an end-time judgment, anchored in a profound moral realism. We do the world a disservice to obscure this behind the arcane chronological speculations of 1844.‖ (John McLarty, ―Problems with 1844,‖ editorial, Adventist Today, NovemberDecember, 2006, p. 2)   ―Daniel 8:14 and ‗1844‘ are a part of our denomination‘s history. We should not be embarrassed by it. But we should be embarrassed to continue pushing it as though it is the answer God has for people with contemporary questions and genuine spiritual hunger. . . .‖ ―Now, it is time to let ―1844‖ fade into the background of our history and give our full attention and commitment to what God has to say today.‖ (John McLarty, ―1844, A Personal Journey,‖ Adventist Today, November-December, 2006, p. 23) 32
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  •    ―The One Project held its second American gathering …. About 700 people spent two days at the Westin Hotel in downtown Seattle. … The majority were church employees—pastors, church administrators, teachers, editors. There were over a hundred students, mostly college, but also a few from academies. There were a fair number of clergy spouses and laity. Each day's program included several sermons and extensive time in small groups around tables. …‖ ―Most of the sermons included significant references to contemporary controversies in the church, so I would expect people to evaluate the actual content of the sermons differently depending on their points of view. …‖ ―Many of the speakers voiced concern that this centrality of Jesus—a value they argued ought to be a given for a Christian church—was threatened by a number of elements in Adventist culture. In fact, sometimes it is challenged by the culture itself. … The speakers cited a variety of instances where this obscuring of Jesus has occurred in Adventist history. … But they did not stop with the failures of yesteryear. They spoke pointedly to practices and policies in today's church that seem incompatible with the mission and person of Jesus.‖ (John McLarty, ―The One Project Gathering in Seattle Attracts 700,‖ Adventist Today: http://www.atoday.org/article/1031/news/2012/februaryheadlines/the-one-project-gathering-in-seattle-attracts-700) 34
  •    ―Generally, participants worshipped meaningfully, resonated with and applauded much of the presentations, experienced a ‗safe‘ environment for exploration and questioning, engaged in discussions with enthusiasm and a healthy openness that extended beyond the programmed timeslots, …‖ ―I was more engaged with it second time around—with mostly the same presentations but a different group of participants and discussions. I am impressed by the chord it has struck with such a cross-section of people and the positive direction the One Project is moving in and calling the church toward. … And while the leaders and presenters of the One Project do well at raising questions, they also do a good job at shutting up, stopping talking and creating a space for interaction and response, as well as worship and communion.‖ ―As such, a contextual conversations about Jesus are unsustainable and soon become something less than promised. That‘s why, in a such a heavily Adventist setting as the One Project gatherings, the default context becomes the church, with a frustrating tendency to feel like a re-hashing of current church issues and past church grievances. (Perhaps it also reflects the few available ‗safe‘ gatherings for this kind of collective venting.)‖ (Nathan Brown, ―A Second Look at the One Project,‖ Adventist Today: http://www.atoday.org/article/1322/blogs/brown-nathan/2012/a-second-look-at-the-one-project 35
  •   ―If you had to name the one, single, most defining characteristic of the global Seventh-day Adventist faith, what would you say? The seventh-day Sabbath? The Second Coming? Conditional immortality? … There is a rapidly growing movement within the Adventist denomination today among pastors, educators, conference officials and others who say it should be ‗JESUS. ALL.‘ …‖ ―There are endless things Christians, Adventists included, can debate (and long live the conversation!) but there‘s one thing on which every true Christian can agree: Jesus was the Beginning. He is the End. He is the One. Now and forever! … With all the variety among Adventists, this movement is refreshing and long overdue.‖ (Adventist Today News Team, ―The One Project Focuses on ‗The One‘ at the Center of Adventist Faith,‖ Adventist Today: http://www.atoday.org/article/1024 /news/2012/february-headlines/the-one-project-focuses-on-the-one-atthe-center-of-adventist-faith) 36
  •  ―To say that Jesus is all but to ignore that it has implications for the ethical lives of all Christian disciples is to tame Jesus and his revolutionary message. … I can sense that some maybe uncomfortable with my words here. Maybe I‘m wrong and one day I‘ll come to understand it differently as I‘m certain that Jesus himself is guiding my journey. Perhaps your comments will help. After all, it is through conversation that we create community.‖ (Sam Neves, ―Reflections on The One Project,‖ Spectrum Magazine: http://spectrummagazine.org/node/3804)  ―Because the mission of Spectrum Magazine is community through conversation, we invite participation of all readers in a respectful manner. To comment on the Spectrum Magazine website, one must register with a verifiable identity (email, twitter, facebook) and agree to the following Spectrum Magazine commenters covenant.‖ (Spectrum Magazine blog rules: http://spectrummagazine.org/node/3804) 37
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  •    ―As one of the 700 who gathered in Seattle last week for the ONE project, I thought I'd offer a few reflections. As I also played a role in shaping the experience my observations are both my own and from the many who have generously shared ideas and perspectives. …‖ ―This was a conversation that challenged the church publicly about issues that generally are discussed in private settings. Several issues that mattered much to Jesus: affirmation of both men and women as called by God, racial reconciliation, healthy relationship to ‗sheep of other folds,‘ and a positive view of doctrine's purpose were all included. This was an honesty conversation amid people faithful to the cause of Christ within the Adventist context. This was a conversation that dealt squarely with some of the most important missional issues facing us, particularly in the global west.‖ ―I was personally very happy that while hard issues were put on the table, both from those amplified by microphones and within the table conversations, there was an absence of ill spirit toward any one or any one group. There were certainly expressions of passion, frustration, desire, conviction, hope, and possibility, but the focus was on issues, not people. This was a constructive gathering. …‖ (cont.) 39
  •   ―How I wish these kinds of gatherings were around over the past 2030 years. The desire for open dialogue has been around for a very long time. I wonder how many have wandered away because they did not feel free to ‗raise a hand‘ and ‗ask a question.‘ I was also touched by a young man who said, ‗I‘M SO PROUD, FOR THE FIRST TIME, TO BE A SEVENTH-DAY ADVENTIST CHRISTIAN.‘ That just speaks volumes. Over and over and over again I have heard this sentiment--greater passion for Jesus and for the Adventist Church than ever before.‖ ―Finally, my overall sense is there is a major generational shift afoot. There is a desire to move ‗real‘ conversation into the public square. There is a desire for honest dialogue (even if it is at times uncomfortable), held in the company of people who are not simply deconstructionists but rather constructionists--men and women who deeply love the church and care about its future, particularly in the global west. There is a desire to be both faithful and honest, loyal and open.‖ (Alex Bryan, ―One Project Reflections by Alex‖: http://the1project.org/blog/one-projectreflections-by-alex.html) 40
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  •  Monday, February 13          Welcome and introduction—Japhet De Oliveira Jesus (First. Last.)—Tim Gillespie, Recalibrate Refreshment Break Jesus (1844)—Lisa Clark Diller, Recalibrate Lunch Jesus (1888)—Sam Leonor, Recalibrate Refreshment Break Jesus (1957)—Alex Bryan, Recalibrate Jesus (2011)—Kessia Reyne Bennett with Nathan Brown, Becky De Oliveira, Matthew Gamble, Mark Witas  Tuesday, February 14        Jesus (2012): Doctrines—Mark Witas, Recalibrate Refreshment Break Jesus (2012): Mission—Eddie Hypolite, Recalibrate Lunch Jesus (2012): Community—Dilys Brooks, Recalibrate The One and things to come—Alex Bryan and Japhet De Oliveira Communion—Dany Hernandez, Jaci Perrin, Terry Swenson 42
  •   ―And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; … (15) I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot. (16) So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth. (17) Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked: (18) I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see.‖ (Rev 3:14-19) Brethren and sisters, from the light given me, I know that if the people of God had preserved a living connection with Him, if they had obeyed His Word, they would today be in the heavenly Canaan. (Ellen G. White, ―Sabbath Sermon, March 28, 1903; in General Conference Bulletin, March 30, 1903, p. 9) 43
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  •  Funding: The registration fee of $150/$160 for the One Project gathering in Seattle covers the following expenses for 671 people: ● Book resources: Simply Jesus, and I am a Follower (―Funding,‖ Seattle One Project Booklet, p. 62)  ―‘The Jesus paradox is that only Christians lead by following.‘—Leonard Sweet, I am a Follower, p. 21‖ (Leonard Sweet quote, Seattle One Project Booklet, p. 105)  ―Since we met in Atlanta (February 2011) and Helsinki (October 2011), not only has our core leadership team expanded, but so has the gathering of followers of Jesus—all living the Jesus leadership paradox: following to lead.‖ (―We‘re Serious About Jesus,‖ Seattle One Project Booklet, p. 7) 51
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  •   ―Many of the speakers voiced concern that this centrality of Jesus . . . was threatened by a number of elements in Adventist culture. In fact, sometimes it is challenged by the culture itself. … The speakers cited a variety of instances where this obscuring of Jesus has occurred in Adventist history. … But they did not stop with the failures of yesteryear. They spoke pointedly to practices and policies in today's church that seem incompatible with the mission and person of Jesus.‖ ―It is common in Adventist circles for people to argue we should read only Adventist authors (which, of course, means our ministers could not learn Hebrew or Greek because the grammars and lexicons were not written by Adventists). One speaker showed slides of various pages in the Seventh-day Adventist hymnal with the author's names highlighted. The Adventist hymnal includes hymns written by ancient and medieval monks, Methodists, Anglicans, Catholics, Quakers, Beethoven and Anonymous, among others. In fact, 85 percent of the hymns in the Seventh-day Adventist Hymnal were written by people outside the Adventist community. Did we really think our worship would be better if we eliminated all these non-Adventist voices? He answered his own question: No! The audience roared with laughing approval.‖ (http://www.atoday.org/article/1031/news/2012/ february-headlines/the-one-project-gathering-in-seattleattracts-700) 53
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  • “Read: There is just so much you can read but to grasp our current journey we invite you to join us in re-reading the four Gospels and the ‗Desire of Ages‘ by Ellen White.‖ (http://the1project. org/media/read.html) ―For that 2011 gathering in Atlanta, participants may not have fully understood what they were coming to, De Oliveira said. They were each asked to read the four Gospels and the book The Desire of Ages, authored by Adventist Church cofounder Ellen G. White.‖ (Ansel Oliver, ―‘One Project‘ Focuses on Adventists‘ Relationship With Jesus,‖ Adventist Review, March 15, 2012, pp. 10-12) 55
  • ―Alex Bryan, senior pastor of the Walla Walla University Church, will speak for this week's assembly and Friday night worship at Southwestern. He will be presenting information on The One Project, a conference and gathering scheduled for Chicago in 2013 that is sponsored by the North American Division of Seventh-day Adventists.‖ 56
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  •    ―A mystic may be defined simply as someone who claims to have had a direct experience (or intuition) of God. … Mystics believe that they are somehow in communication with transcendent reality; thus, a Hebrew prophet having a vision and a Christian believer communicating with God in prayer are both mystics in this general sense. …‖ ―In her earlier description (1892) of the believer‘s coming to Christ, [Ellen] White‘s language is as richly mystical as the words of the New Testament Epistles. … Her famous chapter on prayer resounds with the themes of what may accurately be called Christian mysticism.‖ “Learning From Other Christians: Let us not miss echoes of other saints. Suspicious, sometimes, of instruction from other Christians, we should candidly acknowledge our multidenominational heritage, and admit that God‘s true children include Methodists and Anglicans and even Catholics. …‖ (cont.) 58
  •    ―But we knew that all along, at least if we were paying attention to our church hymnals. These books exemplified a deep and theologically sound understanding of what Adventists share with other Christians. The lyricists are an amazingly broad representation of Christians. In addition to familiar Protestant names, ranging from Martin Luther to Charles Wesley and Fanny Crosby, we find hymns composed by, shall we say, preReformation Christians such as Ambrose, Francis of Assisi, Thomas à Kempis, and Bernard of Clairvaux.‖ ―More important, of course, than the variety of writers in the hymnal is what these writers say. The hymnal is filled with rich, beautiful, theologically accurate Christian mysticism. …‖ ―The fact that the potent words of our hymns come from both ancient Christians and modern ones, from Protestants as well as Catholics, is highly significant. If non-Adventist hymn writers can accurately articulate the promise of union with Christ, perhaps we can safely imitate at least a few of the practices they have used to prepare their hearts for transformation.‖ (cont.) 59
  •     ―My Personal Journey: I did not start out with a desire to be a mystic. Far from it. About 25 years ago I helped design a capstone seminar for honor students at Pacific Union College, and somehow we chose ‗the Christian Tradition‘ as our theme. Each year we read great examples of this tradition, … Time and again these Christian classics spoke to us in mystical language. …‖ ―About the same time I was teaching the junior honors seminar, I bought a copy of the Book of Common Prayer and began using it as a personal devotional book. … What I needed, though I did not know it, was more mysticism in my Christianity.‖ ―I joined a weekly prayer group comprising both Adventists and nonAdventists, and together we read devotional writings, some old and some new, from different faith backgrounds. … We would spend time In prayer and silence, but God was not silent. …‖ ―By appreciating the mystical heart of Christianity and adoring God in the company of other Christians, I became more firmly rooted in Seventhday Adventism and its distinctive teachings. From my silent retreats and other devotional experiences I emerged with a stronger understanding, … If we seek companionship with Christ, He will lead us to richly satisfying springs of living water. And if I say, ‗I have learned this by firsthand experience,‘ I suppose that makes me a Christian mystic.‖ (Eric Anderson, ―What is a Mystic? Seeking Companionship With Christ,‖ Adventist Review, Jan. 10, pp. 16-20) 60
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  •    ―As much as I like Bill Knott, … I am left wondering how an article such as ‗What Is Mystic‘ could have passed the scrutiny of Christian, Godfearing men such as him.‖ ―Eric Anderson has attempted to substitute the words mystic and mysticism for spiritual. We all know there are spiritual beings, including us. But as the Bible points out, there are both good and evil spiritual entities. Mysticism and mystics have historically been associated on the side of spiritualism and Gnosticism. To dumb down, dilute, sanitize, minimize, and redefine this word raises big, red flags. Satan, ‗to deceive, if possible, even the elect‘ (Matt. 24:24) must deliver his deceit in a near perfect truth package.‖ ―To be brief I will read between the lines of just one sentence. Anderson wrote, ‗To be as clear as possible, a Christian mystic practices companionship with Christ.‘ Reading between the lines defined by the spiritual disciplines he alludes to, a Christian mystic practices deeper levels of experience through emptying ones mind, cloaked as companionship with Christ. (Italics mine) I wish it read, ‗a spiritual Christian abides in Christ.‘‖ (Earnest Stevenson, ―Letters,‖ Adventist Review, Feb. 14, 2013, p. 4) 62
  •     ―I would suggest that the word ‗mystic‘ has connotations that precludes using it to define seeking a relationship with God, i.e. its connection with the darkness Satan wishes us to experience. Jesus said His followers are to be ‗children of light‘ (John 12:36; see Eph. 5:8 and 1 Thess. 5:5).‖ ―Webster’s Dictionary (11th Edition) defines ‗mystic‘ as a ‗follower . . . of a mystical way of life.‘ ‗Mystical‘ is defined as ‗having a spiritual meaning or reality that is neither apparent to the senses nor obvious to the intelligence,‘ ‗subjective communion with God or ultimate reality (experience of the inner light).‘‖ Our relationship to God is not to be based on subjective experience, but on the Word of God and our willing submission to Him in faith and love (John 4:22, 23). Ellen White wrote, ‗The mystic voices that spoke at Endor and at Ephesus are still by their lying words misleading the children of men‘ (The Acts of the Apostles, p. 290). A ‗mystical‘ experience may come from the demonic, and may be a bridge to ‗spiritual formation‘ and worshiping the wrong God. (See Early Writings, p. 56). ‗God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship him in the Spirit and in truth‘ (John 4:24). May the Lord help each of us to have true worship and communion with Him based on submission, deepening repentance, faith, love, and cheerful obedience to all He reveals to us.‖ (Frances Foster, ―Letters,‖ Adventist Review, Feb. 14, 2013, p. 4) 63
  •   ―While it is true that we need a much deeper personal experience with God, is it necessary to repeat the same mistakes that occurred around the turn of the twentieth century with our church‘s brush with pantheism? Do we really wish to see God‘s judgment poured out on our institutions again for drinking the forbidden, mystical waters?‖ (Daniel Winters, ―Letters,‖ Adventist Review, Feb. 14, 2013, p. 5) ―I was shocked and saddened—to say the least. The sincerity of the author is evident; however, we do have this counsel in Ellen White‘s Testimonies for the Church: ‗The study of God‘s word should take the place of the study of those books that have led minds into mysticism and away from the truth‘ (vol. 6, p. 132). Also we know that ‗the most dangerous falsehoods are those that are mingled with truth. It is thus that errors are received that captivate and ruin the soul. By this means Satan carries the world with him‘ (Patriarchs and Prophets, p. 338; italics supplied). We know that in the endtimes Satan will come as an angel of light. Even the cover picture seemed to be focused on ‗mystical light.‘ Please encourage us to be in the Word rather than reading the words of authors who are not following all the light we know to be truth.‖ (Gerita Liebelt, ―Letters,‖ Adventist Review, Feb. 14, 2013, p. 5) 64
  •  ―I especially appreciated the article by Eric Anderson,… Its emphasis on union with Christ is truly inspiring. By taking the time to experience an intimate relationship with the divine, we have access to Christian living, learning, and direction. The term Christian ‗mysticism‘ takes our devotional/prayer time out of the sphere of the ordinary and trivial into the presence of God. In such sacredness is beauty, love, and trust. Recognizing that no one Christian group has a monopoly on the Holy Spirit is a humbling experience and an antidote for spiritual pride. Even Ellen White used devotional and biblically based material from trusted sources in the Christian world of her era.‖ (Ella Rydzewski, ―Letters,‖ Adventist Review, Feb. 14, 2013, p. 5)  ―I was thrilled beyond words to find Eric Anderson‘s article, … It was water to parched ground for me when he shared his journey with a group I attended. This is just what church members need. The beauty of the Seventh-day Adventist message is wonderful, but the key piece is to know and adore Jesus. I love to read Steps to Christ to help get my spiritual juices going, but Anderson has called our attention to many giants of faith throughout history who say many of the same things in different words. Thank you for publishing this article.‖ (Sandi Reynolds, ―Letters,‖ Adventist Review, Feb. 14, 2013, p. 5) 65
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  •   ―It was with great disappointment that I read the article ‗What Is a Mystic?‘... Anderson has chosen to subtly guide the reader through a maze of semantic twists and turns in an unbiblical effort to justify the acceptance of ‗mystics‘ and ‗mysticism‘ into the Seventh-day Adventist spiritual life. Anderson first supports his thesis by quoting two earlytwentieth-century writer/poets—Kathleen Norris, a Benedictine-trained Catholic, and Evelyn Underhill, who, going against her own spiritual mentor, was ultimately drawn into mysticism and Catholicism.‖ ―It is concerning that the author advocates for the beliefs of Christ such writers and suggests their counsel should guide an Adventist‘s spiritual walk with God. An even greater concern is his implication that ‗mysticism‘ is affirmed by Ellen White. Numerous quotes from the Spirit of Prophecy warn strongly against mystics and any form of mysticism— calling it ‗satanic‘ and ‗spiritualism.‘ To suggest that White affirms the beliefs that she emphatically warns against disparages her as a prophet of God and blatantly affirms error. Anderson concludes by urging ‗Christian mysticism‘ as a ‗remedy‘ for Adventists today. Despite the clever semantics of the author, ‗Christian mysticism‘ is truly an oxymoron. The combination of the sacred (Christian) and the profane (mysticism) cannot be justified.‖ (Janet C. Neumann, ―Letters,‖ Adventist Review, Feb. 21, 2013, pp. 4-5) 67
  •   ―The author of ‗What Is a Mystic?‘ distorts the writings of Ellen White by implying that she was describing mysticism as the term is commonly understood. A footnote acknowledges that for White the terms ‗mystical‘ and ‗mysticism‘ were usually negative terms. Why, then, does Eric Anderson attempt to put a positive sheen on them?‖ ―Mysticism could prepare the way for spirit guides that are not the Holy Spirit. We draw close to Jesus—not just by mountain retreats, quiet places, and prayer retreats, but also by active service for Him. The way White put it, Christ spent His life ‗between the mountain and the multitude.‘ Is it not possible to promote quality time with Christ without going down the same road as the Catholic mystics who retired from society to be ‗close to Jesus‘?‖ (Cindy Tutsch [Associate Director of the Ellen G. White Estate ], ―Letters,‖ Adventist Review, Feb. 21, 2013, pp. 4-5) 68
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  •    ―I looked up the word ‗mysticism‘ in response to the recent article from Eric Anderson. If you do a search in E. G. White‘s writings, you will find that ‗mysticism‘ is generally used as leading a person away from God‘s truth, not in leading them closer.‖ ―Mystics and mysticism have been around a long time. It came out of the study of Plato leading those followers who were Christians to go into monasteries to become the first Christian mystics. Anderson is blurring the edges so that one cannot see between good and evil.‖ ―Read the following quote from Ellen White: ‗Spiritual darkness has covered the earth and gross darkness the people. There are in many churches skepticism and infidelity in the interpretation of the Scriptures. Many, very many, are questioning the verity and truth of the Scriptures. Human reasoning and the imaginings of the human heart are undermining the inspiration of the Word of God, and that which should be received as granted is surrounded with a cloud of mysticism. Nothing stands out in clear and distinct lines, upon rock bottom. This is one of the marked signs of the last days‘ (Selected Messages, book 1, p. 15). May the truth always stand clear!‖ (Bob Stewart, ―Letters,‖ Adventist Review, March 14, 2013, p. 5) 70
  •  ―This is just a note to thank you for publishing Eric Anderson‘s article on mysticism. I never expected to see such a thing, in view of my experience of the deep negativity toward Christian mysticism in Seventh-day Adventist churches. I was especially pleased to see the references to the Ellen White comments Anderson selected, Evelyn Underhill (who may not be found in Internet sources), and C. S. Lewis. I liked the whole article, especially the last two paragraphs. . . . I hope this is not the last thing you write on the subject!‖ (Lynn P. Hartzler, ―Letters,‖ Adventist Review, March 14, 2013, pp. 4-5)  ―Eric Anderson‘s article ‗What is a Mystic?‘ spoke to the whole issue in a positive, biblically informed, Ellen Whiteinfluenced, and personally experiential way. I was very moved by it.‖ (cont.) 71
  •   (cont.) ―I plan to share Anderson‘s article with my students and others who ask questions about spirituality, mysticism, and related issues. I thank Anderson for writing such a thoughtful and personally revealing piece, and I thank the Adventist Review team for giving prominence to a piece that will run counter to some unfortunate prejudices against learning from other Christians that can be found in certain Adventist circles. In a number of instances, Christ held up the faith of gentile outsiders, including the Syro-Phoenician woman and the Roman centurion, as models of spirituality from whom the ‗chosen‘ could learn.‖ ―Anyone who examines the library of Ellen White can see a similar openness to learning from the insights of other Christians. I just pray that the ‗chosen‘ of today can, along with their doctrinal faithfulness, exhibit a similar humility, grace, and openness. This was an important article at a critical time, and I deeply appreciate the Review‘s candor and courage in serving Christ and His church.‖ (Nicholas Miller [Associate Professor of Church History Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary, Andrews University], ―Letters,‖ Adventist Review, March 14, 2013, p. 5) 72
  •   ―Eric Anderson‘s article was excellent and long overdue. I commend the Adventist Review for including it with the terminology that was used, especially given the half-truths, misunderstandings, and false accusations that have circulated in recent years. . . . I consider Anderson very careful in his choice of words, and I am grateful that he gave acceptable definitions for his usage of them. I also appreciated his vulnerability and example in sharing his personal journey with Review readers.‖ ―I submit that a mystic is one who is devoted to seeking ‗the mystery of godliness,‘ which, according to Paul, is ‗great: He appeared in the flesh, was vindicated by the Spirit, was seen by angels, was preached among the nations, was believed on in the world, was taken up in glory‘ (1 Tim. 3:16). Would to God that all of us were mystics! I want to say with the inspired apostle, ‗My goal is that they may be encouraged in heart and united in love, so that they may have the full riches of complete understanding, in order that they may know the mystery of God, namely, Christ, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge‘ (Col. 2:2, 3).‖ (Merle J. Whitney, ―Letters,‖ Adventist Review, March 14, 2013; at http://www.adventistreview.org/article/6127/archives/issue-20131507/web-letters) 73
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  •    ―’A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds, adored by little statesmen and philosophers and divines.’—Emerson.‖ ―[DISCLAIMER 1: The citation of a justly famous proverb by Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), the celebrated Unitarian clergyman and Transcendentalist, does not mean that I endorse all that Emerson ever wrote or thought or preached. I simply like the proverb and find it useful, especially in these combative times.]‖ ―Emerson‘s bon mot has been quoted by a century and a half of college English, religion, and philosophy teachers—yes, at Adventist colleges, too—who have been trying to crack the intellectual tundra that often accompanies the adolescent mind, hoping some new, green idea might emerge and even flower. Originally intended to cleverly skewer reactionary politicians, pedants, and preachers, his witticism has become a cultural warning of the dangers of the unsupple mind, the rigid and fearful consistency that insists on rolling the marble down the same groove, time after time. …‖ (cont.) 75
  •    ―Had he been more daring, Emerson might have pointed to the work of his friend and sometime tenant Henry David Thoreau, the Transcendentalist who memorably chastised government, consumerism, and militarism. Thoreau also mentored at a distance of decades the developing ideas of Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King, Jr.‖ ―[DISCLOSURE 1: I have read extensively in Thoreau‘s works, spending some of the happiest hours of my youth walking the muddy path around his beloved Walden Pond, and admiring the countercultural man who called respectable Victorian America to ―Simplify, simplify‖ (Walden, 1854). His volumes, frequently dusted off, are some of those I would rush to save should fire strike my library.]‖ ―[DISCLAIMER 2: Much as I admire the willingness of Thoreau to counter the acquisitiveness of his age (“A man is rich in proportion to the number of things which he can afford to let alone”), I cannot make him into a Christian, or allow the impression to linger in a hundred little minds that I endorse everything he wrote.]‖ (cont.) 76
  •    ―Yet Emerson and Thoreau must have winced when fellow Concord resident and author Nathaniel Hawthorne took up his pen to mock the pretentiousness of Transcendentalist thought in a redux version of Bunyan‘s Pilgrim’s Progress that he cleverly titled ‗The Celestial Railroad.‘‖ ―[DISCLOSURE 2: Nathaniel Hawthorne‘s 1843 6,700-word short story, deemed ―a most happy exposure of the inconsistencies of popular religion,‖ was so prized by Review and Herald founder and editor James White that it was almost continuously offered for sale in booklet or tract form on the back page of this magazine in his lifetime.]‖ ―The tortured shape of this editorial is a grim illustration of the fact that a tiny minority of Adventists is now wielding unwarranted influence on the church‘s educational, pastoral, and publishing ministries by stoutly insisting that no reputable thought leader should read, own, or cite from a book by a non-Adventist author. They have invaded pastors‘ offices, disrupted worship services, and left a trail of litter across a smattering of Web sites.‖ (cont.) 77
  •    ―Their position is clearly wrong, for by their test none of the church‘s founders, including Ellen White herself, should have any credibility. The libraries of Ellen and James White, Uriah Smith, J. N. Andrews, John Loughborough, and every major Adventist officer or thought leader since the mid-nineteenth century have been filled with volumes by non-Adventist authors, well read and frequently dusted off. It is precisely Adventism‘s engagement with the ideas, opinions, beliefs, and philosophies of the age that make this movement‘s faith statements so compelling and ultimately victorious. …‖ ―Now is no time to allow the well-intentioned but misguided fringes of this movement to distract us from the mission given us by Jesus, even when their anti-intellectualism is cloaked in memorized and repeated pieties. The faith of Jesus has always been—and should always be—a robust, resilient, and engaging faith that does not hesitate to understand the ideas around us, but tests them all by the clear and timeless Word of God.‖ ―[DISCLOSURE 3: This magazine, for 164 years the journal of literate Adventism, will not be intimidated by those too fearful to read.]‖ (Bill Knott, Editor, ―Reclaiming the Library,‖ Adventist Review, March 14, 2013, p. 6) 78
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  •  ―Mysticism is creepy, and always will be. The mystery of Christ isn‘t creepy, but it remains a mystery. We should adore Christ first, as the article said. But that doesn‘t make us ―Christian mystics.‖ It is an attribute of being a Christian, Christians being those who ―keep hold of the deep truths of the faith with a clear conscience‖ (1 Tim. 3:9).‖ (Bill Tassie, ―Letters,‖ Adventist Review; at http://www. adventistreview.org/article/6150/archives/issue-2013-1508/web-letters-1508)  ―While it is true that we need a much deeper personal experience with God, is it necessary to repeat the same mistakes that occurred around the turn of the twentieth century with our church‘s brush with pantheism? Do we really wish to see God‘s judgment poured out on our institutions again for drinking the forbidden, mystical waters?‖ (Daniel Winters, ―Letters,‖ Adventist Review, Feb. 14, 2013, p. 5) 80
  •    ―Eric Anderson‘s article was excellent and long overdue, and I highly commend editor Bill Knott for including it with the terminology that was used, especially given the half-truths, misunderstandings, and false accusations that have been circulating in recent years. For example, accusations have been leveled against ‗emptying the mind.‘ When a Christian (mystic or otherwise) ‗empties‘ their mind, that person is very specifically emptying the mind of self, and opening the mind and inviting Christ and His Spirit to come in and fill it.‖ ―Anderson was very careful in his choice of words, and he gave very acceptable definitions for his usage of them. I appreciated his vulnerability and example in sharing his personal journey with Review readers.‖ ―A mystic is one who is devoted to seeking ―the mystery of godliness,‖ which according to Paul‘s words in 1 Timothy 3:16 is ‗great.‘‖ (Merle J. Whitney, ―Letters,‖ Adventist Review, March 21, 2013, p. 5) 81
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  •  ―Comprehensive health ministry----the practical presentation of God‘s health principles is the answer to post-modernism, the New Age movement, mysticism, and pagan philosophies which are part of the last day deceptions of the devil. Do not fall prey to the ―strange fire‖ of mystic belief and practice whether in health or in spiritual life. Stay close to the Bible, the Spirit of Prophecy, and a personal prayer connection with heaven so the Holy Spirit will help you to discern truth and avoid error and extremism. God is calling us to be revived and reformed both spiritually and physically.‖ (Ted Wilson, General Conference President, ―Never Doubt—God Is in Control,‖ Oct. 2012 Annual Council Sabbath Sermon; at http://www.adventistreview.org/article/5746/archives/issue-2012-1528/28-cn-ted-n-c-wilsonsabbath-sermon) 83
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  •  ―5. What is the message that Adventists have to give to the world in light of a Jesus. All. conversation?‖ (Tim Gillespie, ―Jesus First. Last.‖ Seattle One Project Booklet, p. 22)   ―1. Where have you felt the search (struggle) for Adventist identity most acutely? … 4. How would you define Adventism's unique piece of the puzzle? 5. How do we honor Adventism's unique calling and message without compromising a rich relationship with broader Christianity?‖ (Alex Bryan, ―Jesus 1957,‖ Seattle One Project Booklet, p. 25) ―1. Do you think the Seventh-day Adventist church is called to clarify God in the world? If so, what is the best way to do that? If not, what is the calling of the Seventh-day Adventist Church? … 3. Do you see the Seventh-day Adventist church in danger of becoming separatist or elitist? Can a church hold to what it believes and teaches about God without viewing itself as better or more saved than others?‖ (Mark Wittas, ―Jesus 2012: Doctrine,‖ Seattle One Project Booklet, p. 26) 87
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  •  ―Dr. David Kim, a family practice physician from Atlanta, said the One Project gathering was long overdue. ‗I grew up in a legalistic Adventist culture where the three R‘s dominated— rules, regulations, and rituals. Missing was the biggest R of Christianity—a relationship with Jesus.‘‖(Ansel Oliver, ―‘One Project‘ Focuses on Adventists‘ Relationship With Jesus,‖ Adventist Review, March 15, 2012, pp. 10-12)   ―The second day's sermons considered the role of Jesus in Adventist doctrines and Jesus in the church community. … From the very beginning Jesus has been central for Adventists. Jesus, not doctrine. Jesus, not prophetic scenarios. Jesus, not rules about food or clothes or Sabbath keeping. The reason for our existence is first, last and always Jesus.‖ ―Many of the speakers voiced concern that this centrality of Jesus— a value they argued ought to be a given for a Christian church— was threatened by a number of elements in Adventist culture. In fact, sometimes it is challenged by the culture itself.‖ (John McLarty, ―The One Project Gathering in Seattle Attracts 700,‖ http://www.atoday.org/ article/1031/news/2012/ february-headlines/the-one-project-gathering-in-seattle-attracts-700) 90
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  •   ―Yesterday I felt Jesus' presence within me and this was evident in most of the other 700 people here. … It is all about Jesus. I see it clearly that it‘s not Jesus and doctrine or Jesus and healthy living or even Jesus and the Sabbath. It‘s Jesus, All.‖ ―A sobering thought came yesterday, however, as we discussed in our tables. I was describing how beautiful it would be to share the freedom of the Sabbath with those who already have Jesus centered in their lives—other Christians. Then it happened. A lovely woman across the table challenged that very strongly. I would paraphrase it in the following way: ‗I have other Christian friends who are wonderful people and might never need the Sabbath because they already have Jesus.‘ As the brief discussion continued, I noticed clearly that her body language screamed with the pain she must have had in years of an exclusive Adventism. A pain of her Christ-loving friends being constantly condemned from our pulpits. I don‘t know her, but I suspect this was the source of the pain and I was so glad she was here because The One Project is perhaps the best way to heal those wounds.‖ (cont.) 93
  •  ―This discussion happened in light of Alex Bryan‘s talk where he proposed the most revolutionary question of our first day. He said: ‗Stop obsessing over the question: ―who are we?‖ because you will only end up with the differences to others. Instead, ask the real question: ―who is He?‖‘‖ (Sam Neves, ―Reflections on The One Project,‖ http://spectrummagazine.org/node/3804)   ―They [One Project leaders] ‗believe pulpits, classrooms, worship halls, board rooms, living rooms - life! - should be drenched in the Spirit of Jesus,‘ but others worry that isn't distinct enough. Really?‖ ―These are the types of attitudes and distractions that are preventing true growth in Seventh-day Adventism. Yes, distinct doctrines are a part of the church, but they aren't the Good News. Evangelism isn't supposed to be about getting people to keep the fourth commandment. Sabbath doesn't save. Jesus saves.‖ (Jules Johnson, ―Who‘s Afraid of ‗The One Project‘?‖ http:// spectrummagazine.org/blog/2012/02/27/whos-afraid-one-project) 94
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  •  ―There was similar vocal audience approval when several speakers wondered how we could imagine that Jesus would exclude women when he so pointedly contradicted the mores of his day to include them. Could we really imagine that Jesus had intended the leaders of his church to use their institutional power to keep others ‗in their place?‘ I did no survey, but my read of the mood of the crowd was that the vast majority shared the speakers' views on these issues.‖ (John McLarty, ―The One Project Gathering in Seattle Attracts 700,‖ http://www.atoday.org/ article/1031/news/2012/ february-headlines/the-one-project-gathering-in-seattle-attracts-700) 96
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  •   ―On the other hand, some participants were expressed puzzlement at what they saw as a difference between the advertised focus of the gathering and the apparent focus of the preaching. They felt the church and its problems had somewhat eclipsed Jesus as the center of attention. These folks agreed with the critiques of church policy, but they felt a dissonance between their experience in Seattle and their expectations based on the advertising. Everyone who mentioned this dissonance to me was over forty. The reactions among younger people, both clergy and students, appeared to be universally positive. They heard the speakers giving voice to their concerns, saying what Jesus would say in our context. Many of these young people said the experience gave them renewed hope for their church.‖ ―Reaction from church administrators I talked to (all over fifty) reflected the generational divide. They, too, voiced strong exception to some of the current initiatives and policies in the denomination. Still, they did not think this gathering was an appropriate venue for addressing issues of church governance. They argued these issues should be handled ‗in-house.‘ Young preachers should leave these matters to ‗proper church authorities.‘ Washington Conference president, John Freedman was concerned because he had invited many people to the gathering, including young people and people new to the church. As a pastor, he worried some of these vulnerable people might be unsettled by what they heard. On the other hand, the younger pastors in his conference told him they were energized and encouraged by the gathering.‖ (John McLarty, ―The One Project Gathering in Seattle Attracts 700,‖ http://www.atoday.org/ article/1031/news/2012/february-headlines/the-one-project-gathering-in-seattle-attracts-700) 98
  •  ―When I asked Alex Bryan about the concern of older attendees that ‗issues‘ received too much attention, he said this: ‗This year's gathering called the church to consider how our human relationships are impacted by Jesus. How we treat one another. How we affirm the spiritual calling of both men and women. How we relate to one another across cultural and racial borders. These issues are uncomfortable--I know they are for me! But Jesus challenged the church of his day with these issues as central to what it means to follow him. We cannot talk about Jesus without talking about what he talked about.‘‖ (John McLarty, ―The One Project Gathering in Seattle Attracts 700,‖ http://www.atoday.org/ article/1031/news/2012/february-headlines/the-one-project-gatheringin-seattle-attracts-700) 99
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  •    ―Last month we gathered in Seattle, Washington, USA to consider the ONE, who is Jesus Christ. … I can‘t image a human being who would reject ALL of what we had to say. The challenge is not in picking those parables or conversations or miraculous acts that agree with me. The work is in embracing Jesus in TOTAL. Jesus. All. (Nice tag line. Another matter altogether to swallow it hook, line, and sinker.)‖ ―I am often asked, ‗What is the goal of the ONE project?‘ Others questions are like it: ‗What do you hope this will produce? What is the agenda? How will you judge success?‘ The first answer I‘d like to suggest is this: The ONE project is an attempt to take Jesus seriously. This includes (and I think this was a major theme of the Seattle presentations) Galatians 3: There is neither Jew nor Greek, Slave nor Free, Male nor Female; we are all ONE in Jesus Christ. This ‗consequence‘ of following Jesus is delightful and difficult—we will seek relational ONEness across many boundary lines that divide. Taking Jesus seriously means a reorientation of the way the world plays: we become less polarized and more equatorial. Or at least we learn to travel.‖ ―Taking Jesus seriously. This is the rigorous work of many lifetimes, and even an eternity. This is how I‘d define what we‘re up to with the ONE project. Together, through worship, communion, teaching, prayer, and conversation, can we sharpen a vision of following Him and commit to more dedicated life of cross-bearing?‖ (Alex Bryan, ―Taking The ONE Seriously,‖ blog post March 5, 2012: http://breakfastfires.blogspot.com/2012/03/taking-one-seriously.html [has since been removed]) 101
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  •   ―I recently did an engaging and alarming survey. I put five pictures of pastors (three white men, one black man, one white women) at the front of my classroom. I asked the class, ‗Just based on the pictures, which pastor would you most like to be your pastor?‘‖ ―The three white men totaled about 100 votes, the black man about 75 votes, and the women … just two votes. And both votes came from college-aged women. I asked them why they chose the female pastor, and they both said: ‗because she‘s a women.‘ So, out of my class of 180 people, I‘m guessing that 2 voted for the woman because she is female and 178 chose the men because they are male. Yes I think that is true. The majority chose the men because they are men. A. B. C.  That‘s reality. That‘s what they know. In some cases they almost certainly have negative ideas about women in pastoral leadership. This is true because women are not afforded equal pastoral status in many denominations (including my own).‖ ―When the non-churched world is saying of the church, ‗Christians practice racism and sexism,‘ this is a problem. … There is, of course, a vigorous debate in the Christian world about women in ministry.‖ (Alex Bryan, ―Men: 178, Women: 2,‖ Blog post, Sept. 14, 2008) 103
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  •  ―‘We love our church. I really do believe that God has called the Seventhday Adventist Church and I‘m tired of losing people when we work so hard to bring them in,‘ [De Oliveira] said.‖ (Ansel Oliver, ―‘One Project‘ Focuses on Adventists‘ Relationship With Jesus,‖ Adventist Review, March 15, 2012, pp. 10-12)  ―We love our church. And so we want the greatest gift for it... Jesus.‖ (http://the1project.org/why.html)  ―This was a gathering of people who expressed strong public commitment for God, the Holy Scriptures, Adventist history, Adventist doctrine, Ellen White, the founders of Adventism, and the global Christian congregation called the Seventh-day Adventist Church. … I was personally very happy that while hard issues were put on the table, both from those amplified by microphones and within the table conversations, there was an absence of ill spirit toward any one or any one group.‖ (Alex Bryan, ―One Project Reflections,‖ http://the1project.org/ blog/one-projectreflections-by-alex.html)  ―Both in their public presentations and in private conversations, the leaders of the One Project evince an intense commitment to the Seventhday Adventist Church. Like James and Ellen White, Taylor Bunch, H.M.S. Richards, Sr., and Morris Venden before them, their commitment to Jesus is supreme over all and is the ultimate spring of their preaching.‖ (John McLarty, ―The One Project Gathering in Seattle Attracts 700,‖ http://www.atoday.org/ article/1031/news/2012/february-headlines/the-one-project-gathering-in-seattle-attracts-700) 106
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  •    ―What I expected to find in Seattle was a group of people completely absorbed with speaking ‗in truth and freedom that Jesus should be number one in everything we do.‘ There was indeed a fair amount of that, but there was also something else that took me by surprise.‖ ―There was a noticeable uneasiness in the air: suspicion mixed in with confusion, a little fear and a sprinkling of condemnation. I wasn‘t so naïve to expect one-mindedness in all things, but I was somewhat astonished that people found a problem with the One project seeking ‗to stimulate preaching, worship, and adoration of Jesus within and through the Adventist church.‘‖ ―In Seattle, people had all sorts of ideas about what was wrong with the One project: what was missing, what should and shouldn't be, possible hidden agendas, etc. Sadly, this is representative of the sort of discord present throughout the church. It‘s fine to have those discussions, but they need to be filtered through why. (Jules Johnson, ―Who‘s Afraid of ‗The One Project‘?‖ http:// spectrummagazine.org/blog/2012/02/27/whos-afraid-one-project)  ―On the other hand, some participants were expressed puzzlement at what they saw as a difference between the advertised focus of the gathering and the apparent focus of the preaching. They felt the church and its problems had somewhat eclipsed Jesus as the center of attention.‖ (John McLarty, ―The One Project Gathering in Seattle Attracts 700,‖ http://www.atoday.org/ article/1031/ news/2012/february-headlines/the-one-project-gathering-in-seattle-attracts-700) 108
  •     ―Of course, there were both the contrarians and those with legitimate questions to be wrestled with but there seemed a general enthusiasm for the experience and focus that had been shared. …‖ ―Yet, while ‗Jesus. All.‘ sounds like a worthy motto—and it is in so many ways— the risk is trying to talk about Jesus without a context. Even God couldn‘t do that— thus, the incarnation, a particular expression of a real-person Jesus in a specific time, place and culture. Neither can we follow Jesus without a context because it is only in a context that we function as disciples.‖ ―A theologically or practically disembodied Jesus is simply a nice albeit amazing story—and risks a disembodied faith. Jesus in a bottle to be admired might still blow our minds and touch our hearts but might do little more. Rather, He needs to be splashed all over our lives, into the darkest corners. As a living Saviour, He needs to be lived and He needs to transform our lives and world. I only follow Jesus by faithfully living life in my family, my work, my church and my community.‖ ―As such, acontextual conversations about Jesus are unsustainable and soon become something less than promised. That‘s why, in a such a heavily Adventist setting as the One Project gatherings, the default context becomes the church, with a frustrating tendency to feel like a re-hashing of current church issues and past church grievances. (Perhaps it also reflects the few available ‗safe‘ gatherings for this kind of collective venting.)‖ (Nathan Brown, ―A Second Look at The One Project,‖ http://www.atoday.org/article/1322/blogs/brown-nathan/2012/a-second-look-at-the-one-project) 109
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  •  ―That sacred echo was felt by everyone we spoke with. We are not alone—just like Jesus assured Elijah (1 Kings 19:18), there are countless others who beat with the same passion. All of you have invested time, resources, and energy in order to spend the next two days with no agenda but the joy of re-investing in Jesus.‖ (―We‘re Serious About Jesus,‖ Seattle One Project Booklet, p. 6)  ―With their hearts on fire for Jesus, these seven modern-day disciples began to seek out others to join them in their renewed mission to celebrate His supremacy. As they looked around at their friends, family, colleagues, students, church members, each of them felt God‘s leading as one-by-one, they extended personal invitations for others to come to the next One project gathering.‖ (http://www.andrews.edu/news/2011/ 03/one_project.html) 112
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  •   ―As their conversations unfolded, their mission began to take shape. [De Oliveira said:] ‗What if we gathered together leaders from all over the world to celebrate the supremacy of Jesus in the Seventh-day Adventist Church?‘ ‗What if we gathered and focused on what it would mean for us, on a personal, and then local, and finally global community?‘ ‗What if we had honest conversation about our legacy, heritage and call for our Church today?‘ ‗What if we brought leaders, youth and adults, young and old, employed and retired, pastors and members and simply soaked in Jesus again?‘‖ (http://www.andrews.edu/news/2011/03/one_project.html) ―I hope that someone is keeping a detailed record from the inside of how this organization develops over time. There are several paths it could take. What will happen as the ethos it projects begins to interface seriously with the institutional Adventist church will be one sign of how it is progressing. One could compare and contrast it with GYC ‗movement‘, but ‗The One‘ group projects a very different ‗feel‘ which certainly is not reactionary such as the whole thrust of the GYC has come to be. Some very positive things might come out of ‗The One‘ that will produce some very needed rethinking about what the Adventist faith tradition is all about. If it thought for whatever reason that one needs to keep EGW inside the mix, using ‗The Desire of Ages‘ rather than the ‗Great Controversy‘ provides a counter weight to what the new GC administration is up to.‖ (Ervin Taylor, response to: http://www.atoday.org/article/1024/news/ 2012/february-headlines/the-one-project-focuses-on-the-one-at-the-center-of-adventist-faith) 116
  •  ―Is the One Project primarily a Youth-ish SDA Movement? Is it similar to or have any connection to GYC (or in some ways is it a somewhat opposite movement theologically and philosophically)? … And what about GYC? Why launch this [One Project] program when there is already GYC, which is increasingly gaining GC backing? Isn't that too many cooks spoiling the broth? Or [is the] One Project cooking a very different dish? I have looked at both websites, including the expanded philosophy by Japhet De Oliveira. The more good-natured side of me says One Project is exactly what the SDA Church needs. The skeptical part of me thinks that One Project is indeed motivated by the growing success of the conservative GYC, which again has gone from the fringes to the mainstream by having a powerful patron in Pres Wilson, and that this might be a counter-cultural attempt to replicate GYC's success on the more liberal wing of the Church.‖ (Stephen Ferguson)  Response: ―Anything that presents a better view of Adventism than GYC is, in my opinion, to be applauded. The One Project is much closer to where the church is in Australia than GYC. …‖ 117
  •   [cont] ―We could ask - and quite a few did - why AYC felt the need to start duplicating programs already provided by the Union and conferences? It was (according to those who support AYC) because they perceived a lack in what was offered, or an emphasis they did not agree with. … AYC strongly supports an emphasis on public and personal evangelism and conversion over all else, and see the rest of us as not taking that seriously enough. And while I don't support some of their agenda, they aren't entirely wrong about that. … We could see AYC as representing the 'conservative' tradition, and the One Project representing 'progressive' Adventism, and choose our sides accordingly.‖ (Kevin Riley) Stephens‘s Response: ―So Kevin, are you agreeing that One Project might be a counter-movement to GYC? For the avoidance of doubt, I have no problem if it is. However, I can see a bit of competition between GYC and One Project, even with different patrons (GYC via GC and 1P via NAD,SPD, Europe etc) which may or may not be a good thing.‖ http://www.atoday.org/article/1322/blogs/ brown-nathan/a-second-look-at-the-one-project 118
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  •  ―• I have, by invitation, spoken at or will speak at (this is a partial list):                        Loma Linda University (school and church). Southern Adventist University (school and church). Andrews University (school and church). Union College. Kettering College. Canadian University College. Newbold College. La Sierra University. Adventist Intercollegiate Association meeting. Association of Adventist Colleges and Universities meeting. Campus Ministries national meeting. Calimesa Adventist Church Retreat. North Cascade Adventist Church Retreat. Beyond the Bottom Line, NAD treasurer‘s conference. ABC managers conference Numerous Adventist Academies and Church Schools Adventist conferences in Europe and Australia. Idaho Conference Camp Meeting. Carolina Conference Camp Meeting. British Columbia Conference Camp Meeting. Georgia--‐Cumberland Conference Camp Meeting. Montana Conference Camp Meeting. Multiple Camp Meetings And convocations in Europe and Australia.‖ (Alex Bryan to Max Torkelson, July 2012) 120
  • ―Alex Bryan, senior pastor of the Walla Walla University Church, will speak for this week's assembly and Friday night worship at Southwestern. He will be presenting information on The One Project, a conference and gathering scheduled for Chicago in 2013 that is sponsored by the North American Division of Seventh-day Adventists.‖ 121
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  •    ―The One Project seeks - through gatherings, conversations, webbased content, and Christ-focused publications - to stimulate preaching, worship, and adoration of Jesus within and through the Adventist church.‖ (http://the1project.org/why.html) ―The evening before the One project gathering begins, there will be conversation offerings on several different subjects relating to Jesus in our lives and ministry. … If you would like to join any of the One project gathering conversations, you must reserve your spot, as space is limited to 8 individuals only. You can only join one conversation as they run co-currently. … “Conversations on Cross-Cultural Ministry with Terry Swenson: The world we live in is a ‗glocal‘ one-Global and Local all at the same time. Unpack how things have changed and how we can follow Jesus and live out His life through ours in our culture.‖ (cont.) 123
  •     “Conversations on Preaching with Alex Bryan: Paul made a resolution: to only preach Christ crucified. This conversation will explore what it means to plan sermons, prepare sermons, and preach sermons fully focused on Jesus. …‖ “Conversations on Following with Tim Gillespie: The heart of a believer, a disciple, is the idea of being a follower. Join a conversation that challenges our concepts of leadership, followership, and what it means to be a disciple of Jesus Christ.‖ “Conversations on Vision with Japhet De Oliveira: Where does vision come from? How do you move vision to visible? How do you keep vision alive? Can and should vision be adjusted? …‖ “Conversations on Young Adult Faith with Sam Leonor: One of the most important transitions in faith development happens in young adulthood. How do we inspire/model/nurture a growing, active, and vibrant faith in Jesus during this crucial life stage?‖ (http://the1project.org /chicago-2013/conversations.html) 124
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  •    ―We return once again to the beautiful city of Seattle at the Westin next February for our 4th gathering in the USA. … ―We are also introducing a new feature – the ―Author‘s Corner‖. Since our beginning we have provided to attendees quality books that focus on Jesus, the One.‖ ―The One Project is about lifting up Jesus in the Adventist context, but we recognize that Jesus is the gift to all people. We believe that there is value in discussing with friends of other denominations our common goal of lifting up Jesus. So, while the vast majority of our speakers have been and will be Seventh-day Adventists, we without apology also include carefully selected speakers from other Christian traditions to share what they have discovered in the Scriptures about the One.‖ 126
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  •     ―Proponents believe the movement transcends such ‗modernist‘ labels of ‗conservative‘ and ‗liberal,‘ calling the movement a ‗conversation‘ to emphasize its developing and decentralized nature, its vast range of standpoints [beliefs], and its commitment to dialogue.‖ ―What those involved in the conversation mostly agree on is their disillusionment with the organized and institutional church and their support for the deconstruction of modern Christian worship, modern evangelism, and the nature of modern Christian community.‖ ―Non-critical, interfaith dialog is preferred over dogmaticallydriven evangelism in the movement.[42] Story and narrative replaces the dogmatic:‖ ―The emerging church claims they are creating a safe environment for those with opinions ordinarily rejected within modern conservative evangelicalism and fundamentalism. Noncritical, interfaith dialog is preferred over dogmatically-driven evangelism in the movement.[42] Story and narrative replaces the dogmatic:‖ (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Emerging_church#cite_note-15) 131
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  •   ―It‘s Saturday night, and inside the old, somewhat dilapidated brick building, in the heart of metropolis downtown, flames from several candles dance on the walls. There‘s a church service being held, but it‘s different from any you have seen before. Instead of pews, the congregants (mostly in their twenties) sit on old overstuffed couches and easy chairs spread around the darkened room in a kind of misshapen semicircle. A fellow sits on a bar stool, moderating the meeting, but rather than giving a sermon, he asks questions, suggesting several options for answers, and then joins the conversation. This pastor, though that isn‘t what he is called, sips a cappuccino, as do several others. … What‘s taking place is an emerging church service....‖ ―It is not the ambience (flavor or feel) of the emerging church that causes me to write this book. It is the theological underpinnings. Anyone involved with the emerging church knows it‘s about a lot more than just candles, incense, and darkened rooms. Listen to the comments made by three different participants who explain what they think the movement is about:    It‘s really not a rebellion so much as it‘s just finding a new set of answers, a different way of being Christians. I think it‘s a new reformation. I think it‘s a new way of looking at the Bible. I think it is a movement that will have an impact on all churches in the United States.‖ (Roger Oakland, Faith Undone, pp. 13, 14) 133
  •    ―It is difficult to define the emerging church. In fact, many say the emerging church is not a church—it‘s only a dialogue or conversation. …‖ ―With obscure language, a seemingly noble cause, and evasive conversations, the emerging church is mesmerizing many people (including Christians), receiving the support of established Christian leaders, and leaving a trail of confusion and disarray in its path. …‖ ―In the beginning of this chapter, we saw a glimpse of an emerging church service. Instead of a pastor preaching from the Bible, a facilitator asks questions, which are followed by more questions by himself or the members of the congregation, some of whom will offer possible answers to these questions. The salvation message of the emerging church is not found in doctrine but in dialogue, not in truth but in discussion. In this sense, always searching but never finding is a trademark of the emerging church, because in the endless dialogue (conversation), the truth is never found.‖ (Roger Oakland, Faith Undone, pp. 15, 19, 20) 134
  •   ―Hegelian Dialectics are most used by the emergent church and this [book] is no different. The whole ideal of mixing two opposing viewpoints is the worst compromise. … If you see the titles of every review--quite a few mention ‗Deep‘. This again is the same exact ideology that sees synthesis between two opposing viewpoints with which I will end with a [scripture] passage.‖ ―2 Co 6:14-17 ‗Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel? And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you.‘‖ (http://www.amazon.com/Deep-Church-Beyond-Emerging-Traditional/product-reviews) 135
  •   ―The development seen in the cause of God is similar to the development seen when Balaam caused Israel to sin just before they entered the promised land. How dangerous it is so to exalt any man that he becomes confused, and confuses the minds of others in regard to the truths that for the last fifty years the Lord has been giving His people. …‖ ―These doctrines, followed to their logical conclusion sweep away the whole Christian economy. They estimate as nothing the light that Christ came from heaven to give John to give to His people. They teach that the scenes just before us are not of sufficient importance to be given special attention. They make of no effect the truth of heavenly origin, and rob the people of God of their past experience, giving them instead a false science. …‖ (cont.) 136
  •   ―I was instructed to call upon our physicians and ministers to take a firm stand for the truth. We are not to allow atheistic, spiritualistic sentiments to be brought before our youth. God has led us in the past, giving us truth, eternal truth. By this truth we are to stand. Some of the leaders in the medical work have been deceived, and if they continue to hold fanciful, spiritualistic ideas, they will make many believe that the platform upon which we have been standing for the past fifty years has been torn away. …‖ ―The heavenly messenger turned to those professing to be medical missionaries, and said, ‗How could you allow yourselves to be led blindfold, How could you so misrepresent the name you bear? You have your Bibles. Why have you not reasoned from cause to effect? You have accepted theories that have led you away from the truths that are to stamp their impress upon the characters of all Seventh-day Adventists. Your leader has been removing the foundation-timbers one by one, and his reasoning would soon leave us with no certain foundation for our faith. He has not heeded the testimonies that God through His Spirit has given. … He has not known whether his feet were tending. But in his recent writings, his tendencies toward Pantheism have been revealed.‘‖ 137 (cont.)
  •   ―The enemy of souls has sought to bring in the supposition that a great reformation was to take place among Seventh-day Adventists, and that this reformation would consist in giving up the doctrines which stand as the pillars of our faith, and engaging in a process of reorganization. Were this reformation to take place what would result? The principles of truth that God in His wisdom has given to the remnant church would be discarded. Our religion would be changed. The fundamental principles that have sustained the work for the last fifty years would be accounted as error. A new organization would be established. Books of a new order would be written. A system of intellectual philosophy would be introduced. The founders of this system would go into the cities, and do a wonderful work. The Sabbath, of course would be lightly regarded, as also the God who created it. Nothing would be allowed to stand in the way of the new movement. The leaders would teach that virtue is better than vice, but God being removed they would place their dependence on human power, which, without God, is worthless. Their foundation would be built on the sand, and storm and tempest would sweep away the structure. ― (Battle Creek Letters, pp. 79-81) 138