God said to Adam:
Gen 2:17 But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.
Eve said to the Serpent:
Gen 3:2-3 And the woman said unto the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden: But of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die.
The servant of the Lord said
The serpent plucked the fruit of the forbidden tree and placed it in the hands of the half-reluctant Eve. Then he reminded her of her own words, that God had forbidden them to touch it, lest they die. She would receive no more harm from eating the fruit, he declared, than from touching it. Perceiving no evil results from what she had done, Eve grew bolder. PP 55,56
In her efforts to defend God’s Word, Eve overstated what God had said and her overstatement provided a window for Satan to destroy her. Overstating God’s Word is what opened the door for the destruction of the human race.
Satan has mastered the art of deceiving humanity by taking advantage of the desire to do the right thing. We know that Satan hates Jesus and wants to do everything he can to destroy Him. If Satan came to us directly and attacked the divinity of Jesus we would be ready for him and we would not be deceived. But Satan is much more cunning than we think. He invites us to overstate our case concerning the identity of the Son of God in order to disconnect us from him.
God’s Word declares:
Matt 3:17 And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.
Matt 4:3 And when the tempter came to him, he said, If thou be the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread.
Satan did not confront Christ and say “you are not the Son of God” he invited him to prove He was the Son not by resting in the Father’s Word but through the display of His own power. He invited the Son to overstate His position through a display of power that would cast doubt on His reliance on the Father.
Satan is now asking us the same question, If Christ is Divine show you believe it by ascribing to Him “absolute deity.” Make Him God in His own right without an inheritance from the Father, then you will show your true allegiance to Him!
So we as an Adventist Church respond to the challenge. In our eagerness to defend our Lord and Saviour, we overstate the case concerning the Son and make Him identical to the Father and strip from Him His inherited Divinity.
In stripping from Christ His true identity, we are no longer connected to the true Son of God and we have no chance against the evil one. We no longer have a truly divine example of submission, trust and obedience. These things are now metaphor and not reality.
In a relational kingdom, it is not simply a matter of raising the power bar to the highest level and content ourselves that we have defended the Son of God. We must hit the target and identify the exact position of the Son otherwise we will lose Him. In the 28 Fundamentals expressed by our Adventist Church we have raised the bar to what we believe is the highest level in our efforts to defend our beloved Saviour. Instead we have overstated the case like our mother Eve and like her opened the flood gates of hell.
It never pays to overstate what God says, destruction is the inevitable result.
Rev 22:18-19 For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book: And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.