As one who "considered" Seventh Day Adventism for over three years while in
college and graduate school, I know where you are coming from. I think
that it's only fair to the group and to the debate to let people know where
you are coming from.
While I embrace Seventh Day Adventists as fellow believers, I think that at
crucial points in their theology (7th day sabbatarianism, 1844 theology,
vegetarianism, foot washing as sacrament, the "non-existence" of the
intermediate state, annihilationism, young-earth creationism, and even
wine=unfermented grape juice, to name a few), the doctrines of the church
derive more from the writings and "visions" of Ellen G. White than from a
study of scripture.
Adventist scholars try mightily to find Adventist doctrine in the Bible
and, no doubt, those scholars and people like yourself truly believe that
these things are taught in scripture. But, let's face it, Adventist
theology on its most distinctive points is a odds with the rest of
christendom and most Christian scholars and even evangelical Christian
scholars do not share your conclusions. Adventist scholars who begin to
question these things and drift to more traditional evangelical belief are
branded as heretics. I'm thinking of Desmond Ford, Robert Brinsmead, and
Ron Numbers--perhaps there are others.
Of course, some of these doctrines are found in other communions, e.g.
innovative eschatology, young-earth creationism, and "wine=unfermented
grape juice". I believe that this has a lot to do with the state of
American evangelicalism in the mid 1800's.
By the way, while I haven't read Bacchiochi on Biblical wine, I have read
"From Sabbath to Lord's Day", and while it certainly is a scholarly work,
and has some commendable features, in the end, I must reject its basic
While this post doesn't settle the debate--I don't want to be guilty of any
genetic fallacy--I do think it sheds light on some of the presuppositions
of the debate.
>At 06:56 PM 8/30/70 -0600, you wrote:
>>I'm aware of the different meanings of "wine". At Cana's wedding party,
>>however, it is obvious from the text that the *good* wine was fermented.
>Obvious to whom? Possibly it may be obvious to one inculcated in western
>decadent thought about what is "good" in wine. Personally I would not
>choose fermented wine or reconstituted preserved wine over the fresh
>variety, in any circumstance, and I would suggent the wedding guests in
>Cana felt likewise.
Terry M. Gray, Computer Support Scientist
Chemistry Department, Colorado State University
Fort Collins, Colorado 80523
phone: 970-491-7003 fax: 970-491-1801