Apology and Confession of Adrian Ebens
former Pastor of the Seventh-day Adventist Church
Psalms 51:1,2 Have mercy upon me, O God, according to thy lovingkindness: according unto the multitude of thy tender mercies blot out my transgressions. Wash me throughly from mine iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin.
January 19, 2010
Dear Brothers and Sisters of the Adventist Covenant Fellowship
I am writing to you under the conviction of the need to apologise. In my position as a minister of the Seventh-day Adventist church and as the director of Maranatha Media, I have held a position of influence and I have used these positions to support and promote teachings that are not Biblical.
In the year of 2007, through a series of providential events, I was convicted that the doctrine of the Trinity as expressed in the 28 Fundamentals of Seventh-day Adventists could not be supported by Scripture and is in fact a violation of the Commandments of God, most notably the first four commandments.
From my study of Scripture and prayer I found that God had laid a solid foundation for the Adventist movement through the conviction of its leaders that Jesus is in fact the very Son of God, not in symbol but in reality. I learnt that God is indeed the Father of Jesus and that Christ has received everything that He possesses by inheritance. In having this Son, I have found with great joy that I have life and have it abundantly.
I was also convicted that my belief in the Trinity as expressed in the 28 Fundamentals was offensive to God and the Spirit of repentance was given to me to confess my sin. I wept for this sin of breaking the Father’s commandments. I also realized my sin in teaching this false teaching to many people both in the churches I pastored and through the websites that I have developed.
I offer to you my heart felt apology for what I believe is a most offensive sin and transgression against the LORD in teaching and spreading the doctrine of the Trinity. It has come to my notice, that this teaching is a dangerous, spiritualistic tool of Satan to destroy the life saving truth of the Father and His precious Son. It also lays the foundation for the destruction of several other teachings delivered to the founders of our faith.
Over the last two years I have been in dialog with the Biblical Research committee of the South Pacific Division of Seventh-day Adventists appealing to them to restudy this issue and consider the evidence that I put before them. The committee found no light in what I presented to them and asked me not to circulate my manuscript to the church in general.
I took their recommendations and counsel to the Lord and asked Him to help me listen carefully to what they had said as I respect their position as leaders of the Church. I asked the Lord to help me see where I might be mistaken. I did not want to cause unnecessary pain and division to God’s church. I found no relief in the counsel given to me, it only served to further strengthen my convictions. I appealed to the church leaders to resolved this issue. I expressed my inability to change my conscience despite my sincere efforts to do so. I felt I could not resign as I recognize the Adventist Church as the covenant people of God but I felt that if the leadership felt it best for the church, they might discipline me as they saw best.
In early December of 2009 I was informed that my credentials as a minister of the Seventh-day Adventist church have been annulled and that I am no longer a minister of the Seventh-day Adventist church. I accept full responsibility for this decision and cast no blame on the leaders for this decision. They continue to be in my heart and my prayers. The Adventist church is at the very centre of my affections and I continue to pray fervently for it as a member of its communion.
I have put together a website which explains some of the reasons for what I have found in Scripture. [No longer functioning] I also have put together more fully the story behind my manuscript called “The Return of Elijah” on my website www.adrianebens.com. My manuscript is only available upon direct request to me and is not to be passed to others as a means of undermining the leadership of the Adventist Church but only for the means of understanding my position. [This request ceased after my disfellowship in June 2012]
As you can imagine this has been a very challenging time. Most of my colleagues and friends have distanced themselves from me and not contacted me at all in regard to this process. I fully understand that upon receiving this letter, you might find it confronting and even offensive. I will fully understand if you wish to avoid coming to my websites or using my resources, this is entirely your decision. I only ask that if you have found any value or comfort in my ministry or friendship in the past, that you follow the Bible injunction to “prove all things and hold fast to that which is good.” Many refuse to contact me so as to avoid being contaminated. I pray that your Christian affection combined with your confidence in your beliefs is not afraid to help a brother you may perceive has lost his way. It is easy to simply assume that it is a terrible tragedy and how could this happen to this pastor? But I appeal to you to search the Scriptures, pray fervently for light and prove all things step by step. Do not let fear of what others think be the deciding factor.
To my former colleagues, I appeal to you to consider your position and responsibility to the flock to lead them faithfully and only present the truth of the Word of God. Please be faithful in your searching of the Word and make certain that you are lifting up the true God of Scripture. We both know the consequences of failing to do this.
To church members I say, do not look to the ministers to lead out in this process as they have much more to lose than a church member, they face the loss of their career and reputation as I have done. The price is extremely high for being able to study this subject in a candid fashion.
To those I have pastored, I truly ask your forgiveness for teaching false doctrines and not being diligent to present you the pure word of truth.
To my dear friends that I have laboured with in the Lord’s vine yard, my heart cries after you to not so easily surrender your affection for me and put me out of your mind. I treasure the memories that we had together and your silence is painful to me. If you feel that I have been attacked by the enemy and left to die on the road to Jericho, please do not walk past me on the other side of the road in silence because you have pressing business in the Lord’s vineyard. If you believe I am in error, where is your loving, caring words and touch? Is this truly your policy to shoot the “wounded” and roll them into the ditch. Who has your heart? Any love you feel for me would demand you examine my appeal to you. Any failure to do so leaves in you in the balances severely wanting.
I wish I could share with you the immense joy I have found in knowing the true Father and Son. Their fellowship is my constant solace and comfort. The spiritual victories now gained, the more consistent Christian life, the deeper joy that our family experience together are all fruits of following the true WAY, TRUTH and LIFE! I humbly and excitedly appeal to you: Come and see! Taste and see that the Begotten Son is a true delight and that His yoke is indeed easy and his burden is wonderfully light!
And finally, to our Dear Father in heaven, Sovereign of the universe, I thank you for your tender mercy in opening my eyes to the true identity of Yourself and your Son. What endless joy I have found in just knowing who you are. I was taught that you are a mystery, but you have taught me that I should not confuse your nature with your identity. Your identity is clear from Scripture, you are a Father and Jesus is your only begotten Son. My heart leaps for joy at the thought of it. I bow low before you and await with anticipation the seal of the Father’s name as opposed to the seal of the whore whose mark is shrouded in mystery.
Father, you will triumph over your enemies and your Son will indeed be exalted as the name above all names to your glory. May your kingdom come speedily is my prayer – In the name of your most wonderful Son – The Lord Jesus Christ.