I, Jonathan Otto, sign the fountarian covenant in appeal to restore our Church's belief in the literal Father and the literal Son. It is with heaviness that I put my name and my life to this cause, as I understand the social implications in the Seventh Adventist Church at present for holding this belief. I furthermore know the difficulties as a young active member in this church with goals aspirations and dreams all centered in this church.
However, I am also presented with the damaging path of going against my conscience. I believe that I must follow the teachings clearly revealed in the scriptures, being understood through a literal interpretation of scriptures as laid out by William Miller and our true Patriarchs and Prophets through the ages who rejected things unscriptural though they be taught by men of high intellect.
I believe our failure to live according the principles taught to us through Ellen White has caused us to accept unscriptural doctrines that our church formerly rejected, and has brought about the indescribable pain of abandonment as we have rejected the belief of God as a literal Father and Jesus as His literal Son. This has left us with nowhere to base our own sonship and childhood to God upon.
I believe that rejecting the Father and Son, and accepting the Trinity, has resulted in our members experimenting with worldliness to fill the void of pain, which is being deemed as 'liberalism' with many looking on with disapproval, and yet the root cause is being overlooked. I appeal as I believe the judgements for failing to see the implications of accepting a false doctrine on the personality and identity of God we will fall under judgement. Yet this judgement will not atone for our poor children being lost without a proper opportunity to see the face of their Father God and His giving of his only begotten Son.
I am deeply saddened as I believe a true literal recognition of this doctrine our current generation of youth could have been drawn away from sin in which they thought they were finding love and value. The literal Father and Son is a tangible reality for them, it is something they can relate to, it is not a mysterious government of three unknown entities that stepped in roles for the sake of human understanding. Neglecting the literal Fatherhood of God is what is leaving our daughters crying on their pillows each night because they feel that they are not beautiful enough. It leaves the boys feeling like no physical venture, no intellectual achievement, no spiritual offering will ever give them a sense of feeling that Core of all existence is proud of them.
This is because we are teaching them that they can never know the identity of God! It is a mystery they are taught! If God is a mystery, than the way he feels about us will also be a mystery! The youth of the world will never know. And we are responsible; For the pain in the church, and for the pain in the world.
The world is receiving the same impersonal deity though the influence of Gnostic media- presenting that God never initiated our creation through an act of love and instead it was through power, fear, manipulation and control that he sort out to create a race automated robots. They then turn to themselves to create from within a sense of fulfillment, which leads to self glorification and then to more and more sin as they compromise their morals to gain a sense of value. We should be watching the conquest of the world from our spectators chair and feel utterly ashamed. We should lament as we were given a life raft to throw to them in these times, but instead we took it and declared that it wasn't made right and made modifications to it. It now sinks. Be we won't admit it. They can't grab it because it doesn't look like help. It doesn't offer them a greater sense of value than walking down a cat walk or having a stadium of fans cheer. Why? Because a Trinity is not a Father. A Trinity is not a Son. A Trinity is a role play, where one pretends to be something that he is not really, if we are honest with what we are saying, we have no longer can present John 3:16 and say that 'God gave His Only Begotten Son' if we don't believe it. Unless we are willing to claim that we have a dualistic belief, like the Gnostics use, where something is true and not true at the same time. That is like paying a compliment and then taking it back.
The effect of taking impersonal views of God is always sin, which is why Rome is told to be the 'mystery of iniquity'- because of how this system has been so effective to create sin both in the church and in the world. It is clear that we received this teaching from Rome. We use the same name. We use the same diagrams. Very few people in the church both in the laity and clergy are able to distinguish between it. We claim to hold the doctrine of the Trinity in common faith with other Evangelical Churches, which we know is based of the Catholic Athanasian Creed. It becomes harder to accept that we have not accepted a seed of error that will inevitably bind our hearts back to Rome and finally with the father of lies himself.
"The mystery of the Trinity is the central doctrine of Catholic faith. Upon it are based all the other teachings of the Church..." (Handbook for Today's Catholic. 1977. pg. 12).
"Q. do you observe other necessary truths as taught by the church not clearly laid down in scripture?"
"A. The doctrine of the Trinity, a doctrine the knowledge of which is certainly necessary to salvation, is not explicitly and evidently laid down in scripture, in the protestant sense of private interpretation" (Review and Herald, August 22, 1854; quoted from Doctrinal catechism)
All this being said I do honestly, sincerely and actively submit myself to this church and its leadership as this gives me a sense of peace and forgiveness in my own life. I love this church and it is my home. My mother left her family in Malaysia in the face of persecution as she converted from Islam to become a member of the Seventh Day Adventist church. This church became a home to her. She left everything. She was so strong, yet sometimes I would see her cry when she missed her father, mother and siblings. Through her life in Australia she developed a supportive group of friends. They are here in this church. I fear for the judgements that would come upon those that would be willing to let someone like her be put out of the church. Yet many in our church are facing social rejection for their belief in Jesus being the Son of God.
I grew up in this church. I have been granted so many opportunities in this church. It was here I gained the confidence and skills to speak and performing musically, leading me to opportunities of traveling internationally helping youth to overcome addictions and depression. The sense of joy and significance I have felt in the opportunities I have been offered/seized is wonderful. I am truly grateful.
This church was a home to me when my friends were involved in crime and drugs; and I held back because I sensed a greater calling. This church was a home when I had an aching feeling inside like something was wrong when I was competing for a career as a rock musician. This church was a home when I felt I had to leave everything that once made me feel loved, the crowds of people that would attend the concerts and my beloved friends with whom I had been through thick and thin, yet they couldn't understand my convictions. So I had to go on alone. But I wasn't alone because God gave me a new home in the church.
It's hard because now I don't know if it is a home. I don't know if my place is secure here. My beliefs are so controversial right now, that while I do not share on church grounds or hand out literature, I am hawk eyed and sometimes questioned or entreated with a warning. I forgive though, I once would have done the same thing. But I just have to say that it hurts. And I appeal not for me, but for the world that we need to reach. Our message is for them. Not for us. We are the deliverers. We need to give the message that God delivered to us in the beginning. Not the one that we manufactured to get us out of the cult category.
When you're a secondary teacher, as I am, seeing the kids with scars all up their arms, and tears in the eyes, and head pounding from the condemnation of their mother's boyfriend along with the message of the last film they watched with that same message they keep hearing- that life has no meaning and they must find a destructive way to escape that reality- you start to care a little less about how you fit in with the rest of the churches.
I pray to you reading this message: please search your heart. Please seek to find an answer to the questions I have presented. Please search your Bible and the history, writings and experience of the leaders of the Seventh Day Adventist Church in the beginning. Please read Ellen White's writings with an open heart and see what she is actually saying, rather than trying to prove a point, whichever that may be. And most of all, please ask God what is true and beg for him to give you a sincere searching heart. Pray that he will take away your fear. Pray that you can experience the joy of being his child, and being taught by him, personally in your study room or bedroom. He will reveal the answers. Please do not be quick to respond, as that shows that we have not consulted God but rather you have gone with your preconceived ideas that may or may not be right.
I pray that you and I, and the rest of our love ones can stand in the courts of heaven and hear the words, "Well done thou good and faithful servant. Enter into the joy of the Lord." And this we hear because we denied ourselves, denied the flesh and followed His will.