Welcome to Gospel Reflections!
Originally from Colombo, Sri Lanka, I now live in Winnipeg, Canada.
Who am I?
My name is Stephen Mendis. For more than 10 years, I was an active member of the Seventh-day Adventist (SDA) church in Sri Lanka. I served the church as an associate youth director, and a member of the executive committee. I was also a young adult Sabbath school teacher and lay preacher.
I came to realize from my early days that members in the church were confused about the gospel. The church didn’t teach me the gospel either, but I grew in my understanding of it over the years through personal study.
As I grew in my understanding, I made it my passion to share the gospel with SDA’s, others and present SDA doctrines in a Christ centered manner. Not just that. I believed the SDA church was a Bible based church and was the movement entrusted for truth for the last days. For 8 years, I defended its beliefs at my blog site: www.everlasting-gospel.blogspot.com
To my surprise, when I began restudying the old and the new testaments, especially the covenants God made with His people, I rediscovered that Adventist truth is far from the Bible truth. I also rediscovered the gospel of Jesus Christ more fully and clearly.
There are godly Christians living in the SDA church who have put their trust in Jesus to save them, but many are confused about the gospel, and the new covenant. They do not know or believe that Christ’s sacrifice is the only sufficient blood payment for our sins, and when we repent for our sins, and our inability to save ourselves, and accept Jesus as Savior and Lord, we are born again, Christ comes into our life, He gave us eternal life, we were sealed with the Holy Spirit, and empowered to live in the Spirit, and become more and more like Jesus.
Majority of the Adventists seek to save themselves by complying to a few laws (viz. sabbath, tithes & diet but are ignorant of the other moral commands. They claim to keep ‘ALL’ the commandments but teach and believe in a very narrow view of sin, law and righteousness like the religious leaders of Jesus’ day.
I was a proud ‘Sabbath keeper’, but when I read the Bible, I found that neither I nor any Adventist for that matter was properly observing all the Sabbath laws properly. We were happy to pick and choose laws from the Old Covenant, and then we had a spirit of pity and condemnation for those who did not follow our Sabbath practices. We were hypocrites. See: What old covenant Sabbath keeping really is.
Gospel ignorance has also blinded Adventists to the new covenant law of love: loving Jesus supremely, and others sacrificially: a law that is expressed beyond ten commandments.
Of course, these things are not uncommon among evangelical Christians, however, the issue in the SDA church stem from its belief system. Many SDA’s are blinded to Christ’s all-sufficient sacrifice, and the higher standard of law and righteousness in the new covenant as they base an entire belief system on the old covenant, which God has declared obsolete, when He established the new covenant (Hebrews 8:6-13).
No church is perfect. There is legalism in many other churches (elsewhere licentiousness), but when a church teaches a man-centered, works-based, gospel-absent, Christ-less, old covenant-backed obsolete message, it is time to leave it and expose it.
I truly feel sorry for many SDA’s for missing the gospel of Jesus Christ and for being misguided by false theology. SDA’s are very confident they are the remnant church, like the Mormons and the Jehovah’s Witnesses. However, their teachings are full of errors, and inconsistencies. See sabbath, tithes, diet, Three Angel’s Messages, Ellen White = Spirit of Prophesy, 1844 and the gospel: are they compatible? My hope and prayer is that the SDA church will reform, and bring its teachings more in line with the gospel, and the Bible.
This blog is mainly to share my new faith, and the gospel of Jesus Christ. I also intend to share how I viewed and defended certain SDA beliefs, and why I can no longer do so.
Thanks for stopping by. Hope you will be blessed and encouraged.
In His joy and assurance,