Ellen G. White Writings

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Australasian Union Conference Record

March 1, 1904

Danger in Speculative Knowledge - Part 1

False science is one of the agencies that Satan used in the heavenly courts, and it is used by him today. The false assertions that he made to the angels, his subtle scientific theories, seduced many of them from their loyalty.

Having lost his place in heaven, Satan presented his temptations to our first parents. Adam and Eve yielded to the enemy, and by their disobedience humanity was estranged from God, and the earth was separated from heaven.

If Adam and Eve had never touched the forbidden tree, the Lord would have imparted to them knowledge,—knowledge upon which rested no curse of sin, knowledge that would have brought them everlasting joy. The only knowledge they gained by their disobedience was a knowledge of sin and its results.

Last-Day Deceptions

The field into which Satan led our first parents is the same to which he is leading men today. He is flooding the world with pleasing fables. By every device at his command he seeks to prevent men from obtaining that knowledge of God which is salvation.

We are living in an age of great light; but much that is called light is opening the way for the wisdom and arts of Satan. Many things will be presented that appear to be true, and yet they need to be carefully considered with much prayer; for they may be specious devices of the enemy. The path of error often appears to lie close to the path of truth. It is hardly distinguishable from the path that leads to holiness and heaven. But the mind enlightened by the Holy Spirit may discern that it is diverging from the right way. After awhile the two are seen to be widely separated.

Pantheistic Theories

Already there are coming in among our people spiritualistic teachings that will undermine the faith of those who give heed to them. The theory that God is an essence pervading all nature is one of Satan's most subtle devices. It misrepresents God, and is a dishonor to His greatness and majesty.

Pantheistic theories are not sustained by the Word of God. The light of His truth shows that these theories are soul-destroying agencies. Darkness is their element, sensuality their sphere. They gratify the natural heart, and give license to inclination. Separation from God is the result of accepting them.

Our condition through sin has become preternatural, and the power that restores us must be supernatural, else it has no value. There is but one power that can break the hold of evil from the hearts of men, and that is the power of God in Jesus Christ. Only through the blood of the crucified One is there cleansing from sin. His grace alone can enable us to resist and subdue the tendencies of our fallen nature. This power the spiritualistic theories concerning God make of no effect. If God is an essence pervading all nature, then He dwells in all men; and in order to attain to holiness, man has only to develop the power that is within him.

These theories, followed to their logical conclusion, sweep away the whole Christian economy. They do away with the necessity for the atonement and make man his own saviour. These theories regarding God make His Word of no effect, and those who accept them are in great danger of being led finally to look upon the whole Bible as a fiction. They regard virtue as better than vice; but God being removed from His position of sovereignty, they place their dependence upon human power, which, without God, is worthless. The unaided human will has no real power to resist and overcome evil. The defences of the soul are broken down. Man has no barrier against sin. When once the restraints of God's Word and His Spirit are rejected, we know not to what depths one may sink.

Those who continue to hold these spiritualistic theories will surely spoil their Christian experience, sever their connection with God, and lose eternal life.

The sophistries regarding God and nature that are flooding the world with skepticism, are the inspiration of the fallen foe, who is himself a Bible student, who knows the truth that it is essential for the people to receive, and whose study it is to divert minds from the great truths given to prepare them for what is coming upon the earth.

I have seen the results of these fanciful views of God, in apostasy, spiritualism, and free-loveism. The free-love tendency of these teachings was so concealed that at first it was difficult to make plain its real character. Until the Lord presented it to me, I knew not what to call it, but I was instructed to call it unholy spiritual love.

Fanaticism After 1844

After the passing of the time in 1844, we had fanaticism of every kind to meet. Testimonies of reproof were given me to bear to some holding spiritualistic theories.

There were those who were active in disseminating false ideas in regard to God. Light was given me that these men were making the truth of no effect by their false teachings. I was instructed that they were misleading souls by representing speculative theories regarding God.

I went to the place where they were, and opened before them the nature of their work. The Lord gave me strength to lay plainly before them their danger. Among other views, they held that those who were once sanctified could not sin. Their false teaching was working great harm to themselves and to others. They were gaining a spiritualistic power over those who could not see the evil of these beautifully clothed theories. The doctrine that all were holy had led to the belief that the affections of the sanctified would never lead astray. The result of this belief was the fulfilment of the evil desires of hearts that, though professedly sanctified, were far from purity of thought and life.

Ungodly teaching is followed by sinful practice. It is the seducing bait of the father of lies, and results in the impenitence of self-satisfied impurity.

This is only one of the instances in which I was called upon to rebuke those who were presenting the doctrine of an impersonal God pervading all nature, and similar errors.

Mrs. E. G. White

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