1988: Judgment of the   Living

Table of Contents

The Bible Says

God . . . hath appointed a day, in the which He will judge the world. Acts 17:30, 31.
Take heed, keep on the alert; for you do not know when the appointed time is. Mark 13:33.
. . . If therefore you will not wake up, I will come like a thief, and you will not know at what hour I will come upon you. Revelation 3:3b.
And while they were listening to these things, He went on to tell a parable, because He was near Jerusalem, and they supposed that the kingdom of God was going to appear immediately. He said therefore, "A certain nobleman went to a distant country to receive a kingdom for himself, and then return." Luke 19:11, 12.
"Be dressed in readiness, and keep your lamps alight. And be like men who are waiting for their master when he returns from the wedding [ceremony], so that they may immediately open the door to him when he comes and knocks. Blessed are those slaves whom the master shall find on the alert when he comes; truly I say to you, that he will gird himself to serve, and have them recline at the table, and will come up and wait on them." Luke 12:35-37.
I said in mine heart, God shall judge the righteous and the wicked. Eccl. 3:17.
For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad. 2 Cor. 5:10.
For God shall bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing, whether it be good, or whether it be evil. Eccl. 12:14.

For it is time for judgment to begin with the household of God . . . 1 Peter 4:17a.

The court sat, and the books were opened. . . . and judgment was passed in favor of the saints of the Highest One . . . Daniel 7:10, 22.

. . . the hour of His judgment has come . . . Revelation 14:7.

. . . Jesus Christ, who is to judge the living and the dead . . . 2 Timothy 4:1.

. . . this is the One who has been appointed by God as Judge of the living and the dead. Acts 10:42.

And while [the foolish virgins] were going away to make the purchase [of oil], the bridegroom came, and those who were ready went in with him to the wedding feast; and the door was shut. Matthew 25:10.

And he called to the man clothed with linen, which had the writer's inkhorn by his side; and the Lord said unto him, "Go through the midst of the city, through the midst of Jerusalem, and set a mark on the foreheads of the men that sigh and that cry for all the abominations that be done in the midst thereof." And to the others he said in mine hearing, "Go ye after him through the city, and smite: let not your eye spare, neither have ye pity: slay utterly old and young, both maids, and little children, and women: but come not near any man upon whom is the mark; and begin at My sanctuary." Then they began at the ancient men which were before the house. Ezekiel 9:3b-6.

Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord; and He shall send Jesus Christ, which before was preached unto you: whom the heaven must receive until the times of restitution of all things, which God hath spoken by the mouth of all His holy prophets since the world began. Acts 3:19-21.

Let the one who does wrong, still do wrong; and let the one who is filthy, still be filthy; and let the one who is righteous, still practice righteousness; and let the one who is holy still keep himself holy. Revelation 22:11.

Surely the Lord GOD does nothing unless He reveals His secret counsel to His servants the prophets. Amos 3:7.

Ellen G. White Says

As the books of record are opened in the judgment, the lives of all who have believed on Jesus come in review before God. Beginning with those who first lived upon the earth, our Advocate presents the cases of each successive generation, and closes with the living. Every name is mentioned, every case closely investigated. Names are accepted, names rejected. When any have sins remaining upon the books of record, unrepented of and unforgiven, their names will be blotted out of the book of life, and the record of their good deeds will be erased from the book of God's remembrance. The Lord declared to Moses: "Whosoever hath sinned against Me, him will I blot out of My book." Exodus 32:33. And says the prophet Ezekiel: "When the righteous turneth away from his righteousness, and committeth iniquity, . . . all his righteousness that he hath done shall not be mentioned." Ezekiel 18:24. The Great Controversy, p. 483.

Solemn are the scenes connected with the closing work of the atonement. Momentous are the interests involved therein. The judgment is now passing in the sanctuary above. For many years this work has been in progress. Soon--none know how soon--it will pass to the cases of the living. In the awful presence of God our lives are to come up in review. At this time above all others it behooves every soul to heed the Saviour's admonition: "Watch and pray: for ye know not when the time is." Mark 13:33. "If therefore thou shalt not watch, I will come on thee as a thief, and thou shalt not know what hour I will come upon thee." Revelation 3:3. Ibid, p. 490.

The righteous and the wicked will still be living upon the earth in their mortal state--men will be planting and building, eating and drinking, all unconscious that the final, irrevocable decision has been pronounced in the sanctuary above. Before the Flood, after Noah entered the ark, God shut him in and shut the ungodly out; but for seven days the people, knowing not that their doom was fixed, continued their careless, pleasure-loving life and mocked the warnings of impending judgment. "So," says the Saviour, "shall also the coming of the Son of man be." Matthew 24:39. Silently, unnoticed as the midnight thief, will come the decisive hour which marks the fixing of every man's destiny, the final withdrawal of mercy's offer to guilty men. Ibid, p. 491.

When God's presence was finally withdrawn from the Jewish nation, priests and people knew it not. Though under the control of Satan, and swayed by the most horrible and malignant passions, they still regarded themselves as the chosen of God. The ministration in the temple continued; sacrifices were offered upon its polluted altars, and daily the divine blessing was invoked upon a people guilty of the blood of God's dear Son and seeking to slay His ministers and apostles. So when the irrevocable decision of the sanctuary has been pronounced and the destiny of the world has been forever fixed, the inhabitants of the earth will know it not. The forms of religion will be continued by a people from whom the Spirit of God has been finally withdrawn; and the satanic zeal with which the prince of evil will inspire them for the accomplishment of his malignant designs, will bear the semblance of zeal for God. Ibid, p. 615.

. . . the image of the beast will be formed before probation closes; for it is to be the great test for the people of God, by which their eternal destiny will be decided. . . . SDA Bible Commentary Vol. 7A, p. 976.

The "image to the beast" represents that form of apostate Protestantism which will be developed when the Protestant churches shall seek the aid of the civil power for the enforcement of their dogmas. The Great Controversy, p. 445.

All Christendom will be divided into two great classes those who keep the commandments of God and the faith of Jesus, and those who worship the beast and his image and receive his mark. Ibid, p. 450.

God means that truth shall be brought to the front and become the subject of examination and discussion, even through the contempt placed upon it. The minds of the people must be agitated; every controversy, every reproach, every effort to restrict liberty of conscience, is God's means of awakening minds that otherwise might slumber. Thoughts from the Mount of Blessing, p. 33.

Church Reference Says

When we come back to Revelation, we find in 14:1-5 that the 144,000 are sinless and without lies and that they stand with God on Mount Zion singing! Quite obviously, the 144,000 are the end-time "remnant" foretold by the Old Testament prophets.

These 144,000, who are victorious over the beast (Revelation 15:2-5), are the same as the "saints" in 14:12 who instead of worshiping the beast keep God's commandments; and these "saints" are the same as the people who keep God's commandments in 12:17. God Cares, Vol. 2, p. 407.

Daniel 7:13, 14 shows that at the close of the pre-advent phase of the final judgment, which began in 1844 and ends just before the second coming, Jesus, the Son of man, was to receive "dominion and glory and kingdom" from God the Father, the Ancient of Days. Christ's kingdom on this earth becomes truly His when, as a result of the judgment and of the preaching of the three angels' messages, His church comes to be composed entirely of individuals fully committed to His service. (In the final analysis, a kingdom belongs to a king only to the extent that its people choose to obey him.)

Immediately upon receiving His kingdom in its fullness, Jesus rushes off jumps on His "white horse" and gallops away to rescue from the earth His loyal but harassed citizens and share His kingship with them.

To put the matter another way, during the pre-advent phase of the judgment, Christ's church becomes "bright and pure" (Revelation 19:8), "without spot or wrinkle or any such thing" (see Ephesians 5:26, 27). By clothing herself in "fine linen" (the "righteous deeds of the saints"), she thus makes herself "ready." Revelation 19:7, 8. At once Jesus marries His church, symbolized as New Jerusalem. Immediately after the wedding (see Luke 12:35-37) He returns to His waiting servants on earth to invite them to attend the "marriage supper of the Lamb." Revelation 19:9 . . . . God Cares, Vol. 2, p. 489.

The investigative judgment takes place in heaven before Christ comes, in order to ascertain who are worthy to be raised in the first resurrection, at His coming, and who among the living are to be changed in the twinkling of an eye, at the sound of the last trump. It is necessary for this to take place before the Second Advent, as there will be no time for such a work between the coming of Christ and the raising of the righteous dead. Bible Readings for the Home, pp. 211, 212 (1949 ed.).

NOTE. The beast "which had the wound by a sword, and did live," is the Papacy. That was a church dominating the civil power, a union of church and state, enforcing its religious dogmas by the civil power, by confiscation, imprisonment, and death. An image to this beast would be another ecclesiastical organization clothed with civil power another union of church and state to enforce religion by law. Ibid, p. 236.

Chronology of 1988 Events

Seven Years of Grace

Why a Petition?

It is imperative that we help our brethren in Hawaii if we can possibly do so. Not because we either agree or disagree with their position, but because a 'precedent in court' is being established where a large denomination may take a small group to court for being too close to the foundation beliefs of the larger denomination, and yet be separate from them. Thus no one knows how far this can take the entire religious world, restricting religious freedom.

Make additional copies of the petition, if you wish, and send them to whomsoever will get them filled out for you. Send me the originals and send a copy to Neal Wilson, 6840 Eastern Avenue N.E., Washington, D.C. 20012. We wish the originals so they can be used by Max Corbett as he defends the Hawaii people.

This is a matter of grave importance to all of us. It is a similar matter to that resulting from action taken by the Roman Catholic Church in 313 A.D. In that year the Edict of Milan was issued by Constantine. As a result of the issuing of the edict, any persons not members of the Roman Catholic Church were declared to be heretics. Thus, they were liable to have their property confiscated.

Thus there is a great need for a sufficient number of Seventh-day Adventists to ask their Conference officials to take a good look at the path upon which we have strayed.

It is desired that these petitions be secured so that they can be presented as a package to the court by the attorney for the defense; thus I will be the one holding them in readiness for that time. It is necessary that this be done before November 1, 1988, so please help us. Catherine Curtis, P.O. Box 138, Bangor, Ca. 95914


The undersigned, each being a constituent member of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, hereby petition the General Conference of the Seventh-day Adventists that a general assembly of the Seventh-day Adventist Church be promptly called to meet in special session to consider the grievance hereafter specified, and after due deliberation, take whatever steps, procedures and actions are necessary to correct all matters requiring correction, including removal from office of any party or parties deemed appropriate or necessary, by impeachment or otherwise, instituting or amending bylaws or procedures to prevent reoccurrence of member actions taken, including changes in organizational structure of the church, and taking whatever steps and means are necessary or appropriate to quickly finish the gospel proclamation mission of the church.

The Seventh-day Adventist Church, acting by and through the General Conference Corporation of Seventh-day Adventists has trademarked the name of "Seventh-day Adventist." Suit has been instituted against various churches utilizing this name who are not part of the duly organized Seventh-day Adventist Church for trademark violations. In one instance lawsuit has been brought against a small church of twelve members, the Seventh-day Adventist Congregational Church of Hawaii. Fines of $500 per day were accessed against this church and its pastor, individually and collectively, for trademark violation and a warrant was issued for arrest of its pastor, John R. Marik. We firmly believe that this is clearly contrary to the Biblical injunctions: "Dare any of you, having a matter against another, go to law before the unjust, and not before the saints?" (1 Corinthians 6:1)

The Spirit of Prophecy emphatically cautions against such a course of action: 1T 201, 5T 242-3, Acts of Apostles 304-306.

The trademarking of the name "Seventh-day Adventist", the institution of suits for violation of such trademark, and the continuance of such lawsuits constitutes our grievance. Immediate redress is sought.

Under these circumstances, it is duly recognized that an emergency exists for it is evident that appeals through normal channels will avail nothing, and that a call has gone forth: "Who is on the Lord's side?" (Exodus 32:26)

Firmly believing in the council, "If God abhors one sin above another, of which his people are guilty, it is doing nothing in case of an emergency." We do hereby affix our signature, calling upon the Lord to duly witness thereto:


From: Judgment Hour Call,
Vol. 1, Number 1, September 15, 1988, Editor: G. Harvey Rue.

"Celebration '88"

"CELEBRATION '88" NOV. 2-5, 1988
An article from the [Adventist] Review, Oct. 20, 1988 [p. 2], reflects the popular thinking of all the 1888 re-emphasis during that year. "The year 1988 has been a year of heightened spiritual reflection for the Seventh-day Adventist Church. For more than 10 months we have been commemorating the 1888 Minneapolis experience that focused upon the solemn theme of Righteousness by faith."

. . . At the climax of the meetings, Neal C. Wilson led out in a special dedication service Sabbath afternoon. His sermon was about Elijah on Mt. Carmel praying for fire and then for rain. Then he asked for the brass torches especially made for the occasion to be brought out. Someone handed him a torch, and he explained that they were symbolic of the 1988 rededication and commitment to the 1888 message of "Righteousness by faith" by the world church.

Mr. Wilson explained that the torches could not be lighted because of the fire code policy, yet they were to be symbolic of each worker's commitment to Christ and the message. He then proceeded to pass out torches to all the conference men, pastors, then Seminarian students in turn, who lined up single file around the perimeter of the auditorium and stage. While the G.C. men and pastors held their empty torches high, Elder Bradford asked Elder Wilson to "light my light," "come on light me", and now "light them all the way down the line, let that good light shine." Neal Wilson prayed for the latter rain and near the conclusion, for fire to come down from heaven. He concluded the dedication by admonishing the whole congregation to take the principles learned here at "celebration '88" to the world. (AR - Nov. 24, 1988, p. 11). The meeting adjourned; Conference workers and pastors milled around the auditorium with drooping empty fine brass torches in their hands.

The whole scene made a deep traumatic impression upon many minds, the whispered words could be heard, "There is no light in the torches!" It was a solemn candlestick service where every one holds a candle in a dark room but no one lights the candles.

The conclusion of symbolic evidences is so plain, so clear, so simple to all who witnessed the ceremony through spiritual eyesight, that the meaning cannot be controverted. To see hundreds of leaders with raised empty torches while Neal Wilson fervently emphasized upon many doubting minds that; "God is still with us," brings to mind the same persuasion used by Protestant church leaders who had been passed by in 1844, proclaiming, "God is with us, We stand in the light, We have the truth." EW 241.

The rest of the evening many shared the unmistakable conclusion of the most significant symbolic event since 1888: That the candlestick has been removed from the corporate Seventh- day Adventist denomination. God cannot and will not use it as His organizational vehicle to lighten the earth with His glory (Rev. 18:1).

The sealed rejection of the 1888 message was not during the "Celebration", ironically enough, it was at the N.A.D. Year End Meetings at the Registry Hotel several days prior. During these meetings, two major policies were voted on which deny every practical truth of the 1888 message, and affirm the very evils that message was sent to correct. The two policies are: "GUIDELINES FOR ACCEPTABLE INDEPENDENT MINISTRIES" and the "GENERAL CONFERENCE OF SEVENTH-DAY ADVENTISTS NEW TRADEMARK POLICY". The independent ministries who do not qualify as "acceptable" according to the arbitrary G. C. guidelines, subject themselves to the possibility of civil litigation according to the "B 80 20 Unauthorized Use" clause of the new trademark policy. Submit or else . . .

The voting of these two policies with the symbolic evidences connected with the 1988 "Celebration", display the graphic fulfillment of the prophetic consequences of a persistent rejection of the 1888 message. For those seeking a sign: here it is. The handwriting is on the wall.

"No one must be permitted to close the avenues whereby the light of truth shall come to the people. As soon as this shall be attempted, God's Spirit will be quenched," MS 15, 1888, sermon.

From: Conflict, pp. 19, 20.

The Celebration Church


It was just before the "Celebration" of Passover, that the leaders of the Jewish church united with the civil government in order to crucify Christ (John 19:14, 15). The significance of this event was that the representative leaders of the church, officially repudiated or broke the covenant relationship between the Jewish nation and God.

"They cried out for the crucifixion of Christ and, as representatives of the Jewish nation, placed themselves under the Roman jurisdiction, which they despised, by saying "We have no king but Caesar." When they said this they unchurched themselves." MR #999-4. See also 5BC 1149, DA 737, 738.

The General Conference sponsored "Celebration" of the 1888 message, held in Minneapolis, Minnesota in 1988, is similar to the "Passover Celebration" of the Jews in A.D. 31. As the Jews "celebrated" Passover, a commemoration of their deliverance from the bondage of Egypt (symbolizing sin), so the "Celebration '88" meeting in 1988, commemorated the hundred year anniversary since the Righteousness by Faith message was proclaimed as a deliverance remedy for sin and legalism.

Just before the Passover celebration of the Jews, the leaders of the Church divorced themselves from God by officially uniting the church with the civil government (Caesar) in order to prosecute that dissident man (Jesus Christ).

Likewise, just before the "Celebration 1988 Commemoration", the representative leaders of the General Conference rejected the protective power of Christ by winning the first S.D.A. trademark lawsuit in history, and forming an official "Trademark Policy" for the North American Division. Thus, officially marrying the church to the protective care of "Uncle Sam" (U.S.A. govt.) while divorcing herself from the loving hands of Christ. The leaders are officially committed to use the "strong arm" (civil power) of her new husband, by present and future litigation. The primary targets are the independent ministries.

When the Roman government, prompted by the leaders of the Jewish church crucified Christ, God weighed the corporate Jewish church in the balances of the Sanctuary, and officially acknowledged that they had closed their corporate probation, by rending the veil of the temple. Matt 27:50, 51.

"When Christ cried out, 'it is finished,' the Holy Watcher that was an unseen guest at Belshazzar's feast pronounced the Jewish nation to be a nation unchurched. The same hand that traced on the wall the characters that recorded Belshazzar's doom and the end of the Babylonian kingdom, rent the veil of the temple from top to bottom". 5 BC 1109, (MR #999-8).

The "same angel" that told the Babylonian kingdom during Belshazzar's celebration feast that it had been "weighed and found wanting", Dan. 5:27, told the Jewish nation that they were "unchurched" by God. Essentially it was the same message to both nations; "probation has closed for you as a nation."

When the angel rent the veil of the temple, the most holy place was publicly exposed. This was a sign to all the honest in heart to see that the schechinah was no longer present with the Jews as a nation. The disciples didn't understand this fact clearly until Pentecost. . .

Like as the Jews celebrated Passover, a commemoration of their deliverance from the bondage of Egypt (symbolizing sin), while at the same time crucifying the one who had brought them out of Egypt; So the Adventist leaders celebrated the 1888 message in 1988, while crucifying by their official "policies", every principle the 1888 message was designed to teach. Just as A.T. Jones and E.J. Waggoner preached a deliverance message in 1888 and were crucified as a result, so today, those who raise a voice as a remedy to deliver the modern church out of "worldly policy", are crucified by threats of civil litigation.

"The world and unconverted church members are in sympathy. Some when God reproves them for wanting their own way, make the world their confidence, and bring church matters before the world (civil courts) for decision. Then there is collision and strife, and CHRIST IS CRUCIFIED afresh and put to open shame." 3SM 302; 5T 242, 243; BC 1106-7. The official position of the General Conference is to "crucify Christ afresh" through the "trademark policy."

Like as the judgment angel rent the veil of the temple during the passover celebration, exposing the most holy place void of the schechinah light, a sign that probation had closed for the Jews as a nation; so during the "Celebration 1988 Commemoration", the judgment angel spoke Rev. 2:5 and 8T 247 to many hearts, while the world leaders held high their unlit brass torches as a symbol of their "rekindled" dedication to the principles of the 1888 message. Just as the leaders couldn't light the torches because it was against the "fire code policy"; so God can't pour His Spirit upon human torches because of our "policies."

Like as the Jewish nation was spewed out of God's mouth because the representative leaders rejected the true gospel and united with the state in order to crucify Christ; so the Seventh-day Adventist denomination has been spewed out of God's mouth, because the representative leaders have rejected the true gospel (for New Theology) and officially united with the trademark courts to prosecute Christ's followers.

"The figure of spewing out of His mouth means that He cannot offer up your prayers of your expressions of love to God. He cannot endorse your teaching of His word or your spiritual work in anywise. He cannot present your religious exercises with the request that grace be given you." 6T 408.

"I have written largely in regard to Christians who believe the truth placing their cases in courts of law to obtain redress . . . such men may as well stop praying to God, for He will not hear their prayers." It's the voted policy as of 1988 to be in a "spewed out" condition.

From: Liberty Review, Celebration Issue, 1888-1990, pp. 11-13.

Final Comments

While time is never to be a test again, there are some interesting time elements involved in the close of probation for the General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists Denomination. The fact that God allowed seven years for corporate repentance from November, 1981 to November, 1988, shows how merciful and longsuffering He is. God gave twice the time for modern Israel that He allotted to ancient Israel (3.5 years 31 A.D. to 34 A.D.). In contrast, how deserving the instruction given in Revelation 18:6, "Pay her back even as she has paid, and give back to her double according to her deeds; in the cup which she has mixed, mix twice as much for her."

The parable taken from Luke 13:6-9 fits nicely too. From the time that the Conference initiated contact with John Marik (April, 1984) to the date of filing the lawsuit against him (April, 1987), three years elapsed. The Conference leaders had plenty of time to detect the error of their scheming. The parable describes an intercessory request for one more year. One year later, the court imposed real temporal punishments which could have been curtailed by the General Conference. At this point it was obvious that the General Conference had fully lost its grasp on the gospel of Christ. To seal this fact, the General Conference approved a "New Trademark Policy" in October, 1988. The "sign" of probation's close followed closely in early November, at "Celebration '88," and found consummation with the Week of Prayer seven full years from the Federal registration of the General Conference Corporation's trademark name.

Through the papal trademark church name, Satan has managed to finally destroy the denomination originally called of God to carry the gospel of Christ to the ends of the earth. The fall of this denomination mandates a coming out of the faithful souls to avoid partaking of her sins and receiving of her plagues (see Revelation 18:4). The "image of the beast" which is to be "the great test for the people of God, by which their eternal destiny will be decided" has been formed and is actively persecuting God's people in different lands. In forming the decision to separate from the SDA denomination, intelligent judgment is necessary. The living saints must choose for life or death by carefully weighing the evidence of Scripture the truth as it is in Jesus. Only the "wise virgins" will have sufficient "eyesalve" to discriminate between present truth and error. Consequently, the three angels' messages are repeated to Seventh-day Adventists, testing their faith their practical application of the gospel and relationship to Christ. Ellen White gives the following insight:

The first, second, and third angels' messages are to be repeated. The call is to be given to the church: "Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen, and is become the habitation of devils, and the hold of every foul spirit, and a cage of every unclean and hateful bird. For all nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, and the kings of the earth have committed fornication with her, and the merchants of the earth have waxed rich through the abundance of her delicacies. . . . Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues. For her sins have reached unto heaven, and God hath remembered her iniquities."

Many who went forth to meet the Bridegroom under the messages of the first and second angels, refused the third, the last testing message to be given to the world, and a similar position will be taken when the last call is made. Review and Herald, 10-31-99.

"Surely the Lord GOD does nothing unless He reveals His secret counsel to His servants the prophets." Amos 3:7. The servants of the Most High have been heralding the three angels' messages with the addition of the fourth angel since 1988. Those who are alive and remain are posed with a most solemn decision the judgment of the living. Receive "the seal of God" or "the mark of the beast." It is a life or death question. What is your disposition?

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