FROM YOUR PASTOR’S DESK:
THE WALDENSES (THE CHURCH IN THE WILDERNESS) ‘CONTENDED FOR THE FAITH DELIVERED TO THE SAINTS’
“Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and EXHORT you that you SHOULD EARNESTLY CONTEND for the faith once delivered to the saints.” Jude 3, K.J.V.
“The faith which for many centuries were held and taught by the Waldensian Christians, was in MARKED CONTRAST to the false doctrines put forth by Rome. Their religious belief [or faith] was founded upon the WRITTEN WORD OF GOD—THE TRUE SYSTEM OF CHRISTIANITY.
“But these humble peasants, in their obscure retreats, shut away from the world, and bound to their daily toil among their flocks and vineyards, HAD NOT BY THEMSELVES arrived at the truth in opposition to the dogmas and heresies of the apostate church.
Theirs was NOT a Faith newly received. Their religious belief was their INHERITANCE from their fathers. They contended for the faith of the APOSTOLIC church—-‘the faith once delivered to the saints.’
“‘The church in the wilderness,” and not the PROUD HIERARCHY enthroned in the world’s great capital, was the TRUE CHURCH of Christ, the GUARDIANS of the treasures of truth which God has given to the people to be given to the world.
“Among the leading CAUSES that had led to the separation of the true church from Rome, was the HATRED of the latter toward the BIBLE SABBATH. As foretold by prophecy, the papal power ‘cast down the truth to the ground.’ The law of God was ‘trampled in the dust,’ while the traditions and customs of men were exalted.
“The churches that were under the rule of the papacy were early compelled to honor the SUNDAY as a holy day [not holiday]. Amid the prevailing error and superstition, MANY, even of the true people of God, became so BEWILDERED that WHILE they observed the Sabbath, they refrained from labor ALSO on the Sunday.
But this did not satisfy the papal leaders. They DEMANDED not only that Sunday be hallowed, but that the SABBATH BE PROFANED; and they denounced in the strongest language those WHO DARED to show it honor. It was only by FLEEING from the power of Rome that any could OBEY God’s law in peace.”- E.G. White, ‘Great Controversy,’ pp. 64, 65 (1911 ed.).
Centuries earlier the ancient Israelites suffered the same spiritual bondage under Egyptian despotic rule. They could only begin to obey God’s law and keep the creation Sabbath when emancipated through the Exodus out of Egypt. The last call to the churches of “come out of her that ye receive not of her plagues” is for the honest in heart yet are still deceived as to which day is the true Sabbath and the other testing truths and doctrines. Those who already know these are under solemn obligation to God to proclaim to the “world around them” the last merciful warnings of the three angels’ messages of Revelation 14.
Bless your efforts, NMF.