WHEN AND HOW WAS THE TRINITY REALLY ADOPTED AS PART OF BELIEFS?

Official was the Trinity voted in the GC and officially adopted only in 1980 in Dallas! The first step towards its introduction was made only in 1931, and before that, only a few theologians from the top tried to spread the idea, but they did not succeed until 1931 when most of the pioneers retired. What does the church itself say about that? The official German Adventist magazine “Adventecho” has a very good description, which unfortunately most Adventists do not know, who simply think that the Trinity has been our basic science since time immemorial, even during the time of Ellen White:

  • “The year 1930 marked an additional milestone in the shaping of the Adventist faith… Bypassing the full board of the General Conference, in the year 1931 Annual Book included a draft of 22 Fundamental Beliefs, prepared by editor Francis M. Wilcox along with three other theologians, including President of the General Conference Charles H. Watson. According to Adventist historian LeRoy E. Froom, behind this surprise action was an intention to avoid resistance from traditional church leadership circles. The new version, which was not implicitly understood as a firmly formulated credo, contained for the first time the recognition of the Trinity and expressed itself through great Christocentrism. The decades-long influence of Uriah Smith and his followers was thus overcome. In 1932, fundamental beliefs were taken over in the newly created book of the church. They gained even more strength because they became a measure of preparation for baptism.“ {Adventecho SDA Germany, April 1998, Seite 11+12} “Das Jahr 1930 stellte einen weiteren Meilenstein in der adventistischen Bekenntnisbildung dar. Da Missionare in Neulandgebieten Afrikas von Regierungsstellen immer wieder um eine offizielle Darstellung ihres Glaubens gebeten wurden, forderte die afrikanische Divisionsleitung eine Neuauflage der Grundprinzipien im Jahrbuch der Gemeinschaft. Unter Umgehung des Vollausschusses der Generalkonferenz gelangte daraufhin ein Entwurf von 22 “Glaubensgrundsätzen“ (Fundamental Beliefs), der vom damaligen Schriftleiter Francis M. Wilcox gemeinsam mit drei anderen Theologen, darunter auch der Generalkonferenzpräsident Charles H. Watson, erarbeitet wurde, in das Jahrbuch von 1931. Nach Aussage des adventistischen Historikers LeRoy E. Froom wollte man mit dieser Überraschungsaktion den Widerstand traditionalistischer Kreise innerhalb der Gemeinschaftsleitung umgehen. Die Neufassung, die sich implizit wiederum nicht als fest formuliertes Credo verstand, enthält zum ersten Mal ein klares Bekenntnis zur Trinität und zeichnet sich durch eine große Christozentrik aus. Der jahrzehntelange Einfluss von Uriah Smith und seiner Gefolgschaft war damit überwunden. 1932 folgte dann die Aufnahme der “Glaubensgrundsätze“ in das neu geschaffene Gemeindebuch. Sie erlangten noch größeres Gewicht, weil sie darin als Maßstab zur Taufunterweisung aufscheinen.“

We could see in this official statement that we have not always believed in the Trinity! What does the term “case law” mean in the state law of most countries?When something is tolerated for a long time or judgments are passed in that direction, then it acquires a similar meaning as the law, and becomes a legal obligation when passing judgments in the courts. That the 28 points of our “belief” were officially accepted so late (1980) has no role in the case law. This decision took so long for the believers to get used to the introduced false sciences, which were then passed along with the truth. We also see this at the Council of Nicaea, where the celebration of Sunday is mixed with the rest of the fundamental principles of Christianity. The dead fly of the false Trinity stinks and corrupts the whole church:

  • “Wisdom is better than weapons of war: but one sinner destroyeth much good. Dead flies cause the ointment of the apothecary to send forth a stinking savour” {Ecclesiastes 9,18 – 10,1}

That is why the late “legal integration” of 28 points is more proof that the lie is mixed with the truth, otherwise, it would have been put to the vote in 1931, when the expression and position of the Trinity were first introduced in the Adventist church. In terms of case law, the Trinity has been present for almost 50 years in 1980, and the official vote was only a legal confirmation. Were those 28 points used before their adoption in 1980? As early as 1941, it was introduced that the Trinity must be accepted at baptism, although it was not specified or deepened, and it remained inconspicuous because the Holy Spirit is certainly our comforter, and we baptized, of course, in His name. 

The formulation of the Trinity came only as a consequence, with a gradual emphasis on names and meanings. However, the other side claims that the 28 points are just a formulation of what we have already believed and held. This is not in line with the real facts! Thus, until 1931, we had to accept all points of truth within the framework of baptisms, such as The Spirit of Prophecy or the Sabbath, because they have always been true. But until 1941 we did not have to accept the Trinity! How is it that we did not have to accept him earlier like the rest if that Trinity was previously accepted as “truth”?

Before those (at the end of 28) points of faith, we did not have to vote for something in the church, because in terms of “case law”, everything was completely clear and accepted. As far back as 1931, 22 theological points were formulated for the first time, the Trinity was first introduced as a concept, as well as the inconspicuous emphasis that there is only one God. But it has not yet been removed that Jesus has always been the literal Son! 

This tells us, that Ellen White and the church have remained completely clear on the truth. If the Trinity had been presented in its full form at that time, the church would have instantly recognized that it belonged to the apostasy. That deepening happened gradually over the following decades until most people got used to it. Since even today the sermons mention the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit without specifying, no one has dealt with a deeper reflection on what the name Holy Spirit means. 

In this way, one could talk very gradually about the meaning, and believers slowly got used to a new and different point of view so that they would not notice it themselves. Thus, the beginning of the apostasy was sown in 1913, when for the first time a senior official arbitrarily inserted the word Trinity in one article. The new terminology did not necessarily change the belief. Satan always takes the first step gently, to remove fear from people. The article quoted below was not our official teaching, but only the position of the editor F.M. Wilcox, who together with prof. Prescott and Dr. Froom later introduced this false science into our ranks:

  • “Seventh Day Adventists believe in the divine Trinity. This Trinity consists of the eternal Father, a personal, SPIRITUAL BEING, omnipotent, omniscient, infinite in power, wisdom, and love; of the Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of the eternal Father, through whom all things were created, and through whom the salvation of the redeemed hosts will be accomplished; the holy Spirit, the third person of the Godhead, the one regenerating agency in the work of redemption.” {F. M. Wilcox: “The Message for Today“, RH, October 9, 1913

Many take the above quote as “proof” that we definitely believed in the Trinity even during Ellen White’s time. But when we compare our official ‘Adventist Yearbook’ of the General Conference with the list of our beliefs from 1914, then we will see contradictions, especially in the first two points; The trinity was introduced only after the death of Ellen White. So today’s claim that we did not have a formulation of our beliefs before 1931 and that it was only formulated in 1931 is untrue. Points 1 and 2 of the official beliefs were identical in the years 1872 and 1914. There was no trace of a belief in the Trinity in 1872! 

And that was our belief in 1914, not one article on the Trinity in 1913 by one of the apostasy leaders, Francis McLellan Wilcox, who is taken today as “proof” that we accepted the Trinity back in the time of Ellen White. In 1919, among the leading theologians in the GC, there was the first attempt at the official introduction of the Trinity, led by the elders Prescott, Lacey, and Daniells. That attempt was then rejected by most theologians! The breakthrough came only in 1931 after most of the old pioneers had died. At that time, the science of the Trinity was adopted decently and semi-officially. 

One of the main bearers of the introduction of the Trinity was Francis M. Wilcox, supported among others by GK President Charles H. Watson and Dr. Froom in the background, who was given this task by the leadership of the General Conference. At that time, Dr. Froom was in the closest team for the preparation of 22 points of belief and one of the key theologians from the general conference. He later wrote that “wrong” sciences about God were removed then. His book, “Movement of Destiny”, states that until then, there was nothing in the literature written by Adventist theologians on the subject of the Trinity:

  • “May I here make a frank personal confession. When back between 1926 and 1928 I was asked by our leaders to give a series of studies on “The holy Spirit”…..covering the North American Union Ministerial Institute of 1928, I found that aside from priceless leads found in the Spirit of Prophecy, there was practically nothing in our literature setting forth a sound, Biblical exposition in this tremendous field of study. There were no previous pathfinding books on the question in our literature.” {Dr. LeRoy Edwin Froom: Movement of Destiny, page 322-324, 1971} 
  • “The next logical and inevitable step in the implementing of our unified fundamental beliefs, involved revision of certain STANDARD works, so as to eliminate statements that taught, and thus perpetuated erroneous views on the Godhead.” {Dr. L. Froom: Movement Of Destiny p. 422, 1971} 

The first Adventist book on the Trinity, written by an Adventist theologian, “The Comming of the Comforter” was published only in 1928, whose author “accidentally” was Dr. Froom. What later replaced the removed old true faith in one God the Father and His Son Jesus? 

Exactly what is the official Adventist teaching today, and i.e. the Trinity. One apostasy is like a ball of snow that rolls down faster and faster from the top of the hill and becomes bigger and bigger, destroying everything in front of it, which in this case was literally fulfilled. 

When we compare the fundamental points of the faith from 1914 to the present in the texts below from the list of our beliefs, we will see a gradual deepening of the apostasy of the Trinity. Even in 1931, the belief remained that Jesus is the literal Son, which is rejected and denied today.

Adventist Yearbook 1914:

  • 1:“That there is ONE God, a personal, spiritual being, the Creator of all things, omnipotent, omniscient, and eternal; infinite in wisdom, holiness, justice, goodness, truth, and mercy; unchangeable, and everyhere present by His representative, the holy Spirit.” {Adventist Yearbook 1914, p. 293} 
  • 2:“That there is ONE Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of the Eternal Father, the one BY WHOM he created all things, and by whom they do consist; that he took on him the nature of the seed of Abraham for the redemption of our fallen race; that he dwelt among men, full of grace and truth, lived our example, died our sacrifice, was raised for our justification, ascended on high to be our only mediator in the sanctuary in heaven, where through the merits of his shed blood, he secures the pardon and forgiveness of the sins of all those who persistently come to him; and, as the closing portion of his work as priest, before he takes his throne as king, he will make the great atonement for the sins of all such, and their sins will then be blotted out (Acts 3: 19) and borne away from the sanctuary, as shown in the service of the Levitical priesthood, which foreshadowed and prefigured the ministry of our Lord in heaven.“ {Adventist Yearbook 1914, p. 293} docs.adventistarchives.org/docs/YB/YB1914__B.pdf

Adventist Yearbook 1931:

  • 2:“That the Godhead, or Trinity, consists of the Eternal Father, a personal, spiritual Being, omnipotent, omnipresent, omniscient, infinite in wisdom and love; the Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of the Eternal Father, through whom all things were created and through whom the salvation of the redeemed hosts will be accomplished; the holy Spirit, the third person of the Godhead, the great regenerating power in the work of redemption.” {Adventist Yearbook 1931, p. 377} docs.adventistarchives.org/docs/YB/YB1931__B.pdf

What became the official science of the Adventist Church in 1980, and the penultimate step of abandoning the truth in this area?

  • 2: “There is ONE God: Father, Son, and holy Spirit, a unity of three co-eternal Persons. God is immortal, all-powerful, all-knowing, above all, and ever present. He is infinite and beyond human comprehension, yet known through His self-revelation. He is forever worthy of worship, adoration, and service by the whole creation.” {SDA: 2nd Point of belief} 

In the above words, we can recognize that their “ONE GOD” consists of three “Gods”, while on the other hand in the Bible and the writings of EGW only God the FATHER bears the title “ONE GOD”! The last step happened recently, preachers and believers “accidentally” were not informed at all! Before that, in the list of official beliefs, the Holy Spirit stood only in the formulation “ONE God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, without being directly called God.” At that time, the leadership still did not dare to call God directly in the list of beliefs of the Holy Spirit. In the most recent list of beliefs, point 2 on one “fused” God is retained, with the addition of new points 3, 4, and 5, where for the first time “God” explicitly states “eternal Spirit”:

  • 5: “God the eternal Spirit was active with the Father and the Son in Creation, incarnation, and redemption. He is as much a person as are the Father and the Son. He inspired the writers of Scripture. He filled Christ’s life with power. He draws and convicts human beings; and those who respond He renews and transforms into the image of God. Sent by the Father and the Son to be always with His children, He extends spiritual gifts to the church, empowers it to bear witness to Christ, and in harmony with the Scriptures leads it into all truth.“ {SDA: 5th Point of belief} 

Many soon after adopted the name God the Eternal Spirit, and some of them, as a logical consequence, began to pray directly to “God” the Holy Spirit. And i.e. a direct transgression of the first commandment! In the whole Bible and the Spirit of Prophecy, there is not a single place where “God” the Holy Spirit stands, but only the Spirit of GOD! There is also not a single word about praying to the Holy Spirit, nor has anyone in the whole history ever prayed to the Holy Spirit!

  • Satan was once an honored angel in heaven, next to Christ (not after the trinity).” {Ellen White: EW, p. 145.1 1858.} 

Here we can already recognize why Satan, once the highest angel, as the next after God the Father and the Son, created the Trinity and therefore abused the name of the Holy Spirit. He hid behind that name as the “third God”, and received prayers that did not belong to him as a creature! Praying to the Holy Spirit is a direct prayer to the enemy! Ellen White wrote in 1915 that this great apostasy would come immediately after her death, which was completely fulfilled.

  • “I am charged to tell our people, that some do not realize, that the devil has device after device, and he carries them out in ways that they do not expect. Satan’s agencies will invent ways to make sinners out of saints. I tell you now, that when I am laid to rest, great changes will take place. I do not know when I shall be taken; and I desire to warn all against the devices of the devil. I want the people to know that I warned them fully before my death.” {Ellen White: Ms 1, 24. Feb. 1915

She has previously announced the emergence of such a theology:

  • “Be not deceived; many will depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits and doctrines of devils. We have now before us the alpha (beginning) of THIS danger. The omega will be of a most startling nature.” {Ellen White: Special Testimonies Series B, No. 2 page 16, ‘A Letter to Leading Physicians’, July 24th, 1904, ‘Teach the Word’} 
  • “´Living Temple´ (by Dr. Kellogg) contains the alpha (beginning) OF THESE theories. I knew that THE OMEGA would follow in a LITTLE WHILE; and I trembled for our people.” {Ellen White: Special Testimonies, Series B No. 2 Page 53, ‘The Foundation of our Faith’ 1904

That topic then really came to the surface immediately after her death, and soon after that, it continued at the 1919 Bible Conference. Prof. W. Prescott then tried to push his and Wilcox’s teachings, with the support of leading theologians such as. H.C. Lacey and A.G. Daniells, but due to the most determined resistance of the majority, he did not succeed. Why did he not succeed then if we recognized this “truth” and that Jesus plays the “role” of the Son much earlier? 

When a session was convened in 1919, determined opponents of that science were not invited at all or received an invitation too late. Until then, was it common to have hidden unannounced sessions at the highest level and a wide range of information after that? If we accepted the Trinity during Ellen White, why was there so much fear of conservatives if they were really in the minority, and from whom, according to the then-president of the GC, information about the adoption of a new theology at the unannounced GC 1919 unannounced Bible conference should have been hidden:

  • “Don’t let the conservatives think that something is going to happen, and the progressives get alarmed for the fear that it won’t happen. Let’s keep up this good spirit. Bring out what you have. Let us get all the light we have, believe what we can, and let the rest go.“ {A.G. Daniells 1919} 

Is it normal that we accepted our points of view only in 1931, except for most GK theologians? Why was it so difficult to enter today’s Trinity then, if it was really accepted by Ellen White and the rest of the church after 1890? According to today’s explanation, the session of 1931 only “wrote down the points we already believe in“? From around 1922, the apostate leaders began to unobtrusively insert Catholic songs with the Trinity. But even then, the acceptance of that science was still not completely official, because it was not voted by the whole church. JS. Washburn tried to defend the truth in 1940 and called the theology of the Trinity by W. Prescott Omega apostasy. But this time, the defense of the truth no longer succeeded, because the apostasy had already become too deep. It was not until 1946 that the Trinity was accepted as a definition in the GC, and Dr. Froom’s book “Evangelism” with quotes from Ellen White that “support” this view was published for the first time. 

This way of adoption, despite his unauthorizedness, was argued that it was only a temporary decision and that he would be able to withdraw at any moment if the result of the vote was different. In 1950, Robert J. Wieland and Donald K. Short last tried to defend the old truth, which this time was completely rejected, as the number of those who fought against that apostasy became very small. At the same time, all true Aryan views that Jesus was the literal Son, which hindered the full adoption of the Trinity, were preventively removed from Uriah Smith’s books in 1944, and his book “Daniel and Revelation” was withdrawn in most cases. Today, this is argued by the lies that Uriah Smith did not fully understand the truth, although Ellen White strongly supported the aforementioned book.

  • The foundation of our faith, which was established by so much prayer, such earnest searching of the Scriptures, was being taken down, pillar by pillar. Our faith was to have nothing to rest upon—the sanctuary was gone, the atonement was gone. I realized that something must be done. The battle nearly killed me.“ {Ellen White: 1SAT, p. 344, 1904

She clearly wrote that apostasy will overwhelm any attempt to defend the truth. Is it a minority? That is the absolute majority because only she can overcome any resistance. Are there other theologically and philosophically destroyed pillars of our faith? In 1913 and 1935, the sons of Ellen White made it clear that the Trinity had broken the pillar of truth about God. This is an attack on the supporting pillars of truth, not the accompanying forms of apostasy. 

What else has fundamentally changed since Ellen White’s death? The only subsequently taken teaching is the Trinity, and later points such as that Jesus had the nature of Adam on earth were only a continuation of the work already begun. Regardless of whether William White was theologically right, we can clearly recognize that the Trinity, even in 1935, was not yet the official and accepted doctrine of the Adventist Church and that it was only after Ellen White’s death that it gradually penetrated deeper into trampling on the truth. 

Today, there are claims that a “small” number of pioneers rejected the Trinity, and that the majority believed in it even during the time of Ellen White. Several quotations are taken as evidence, where several theologians in the initial stage of apostasy wrote in support of the science of the Trinity. By that logic, quoting several theologians who reject the Trinity would be an “argument” that the church does not believe in the Trinity! The real facts can be found in one of the most important representatives of the Trinity and apostasy leader in GK Merlin Burt, who made the following statement:

  • “During the 1940s an ever increasing majority of the church was believing in the eternal underived deity of Christ and the trinity, yet there were those who held back and even actively resisted the change. This group was mainly comprised of some older ministers and Bible teachers.”{Merlin Burt: https://www.andrews.edu/~burt/010524_Burt.pdf

If the older theologians of that time fought against false science, and up to 25 years after the death of Ellen White, it is really funny to claim that our church taught false science before that! What someone believes, he says, regardless of whether he is a theologian or a believer! But when someone with complete truth and the task of proclaiming the triple angelic message rejects the Bible and the given work, Satan leads him even closer to himself than his official representative, the Pope. So it is no wonder that in 1980 we adopted the new doctrine that one God (indirectly Buddhist in this view) consists of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, although the Bible clearly says one God the Father, His (literal) Son, and (Their own) Holy Spirit! 

Thus we have gone deeper in our apostasy than most fallen Protestant churches. Together with the Evangelical Church, WE initiated the creation of Luther Square in the Vatican itself, as a symbol of reconciliation and time, completely rejecting the Biblical fact that the Pope is the leader of the struggle against God’s people and truth! We have rejected in a huge number of local churches the spread of the Trojan Angel along with the news of Jesus’ imminent coming! May God be merciful to us, and help us to repent, because according to the prophet Ezekiel, the punishment will go first to the apostate people of God.

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