Ichabod, The Glory Is Departed! Study No. 230
eventh-day Adventists Richard and Bonnie Carlson have been pariahs in their own Church. Leaders in what may be termed the Historic Seventh-day Adventist Movement, for years, the Carlsons sighed and cried for all the abominations done in their beloved Adventist Churches. Richard died in 2003, but traditional SDA’s like him continue.
Adventists formerly were non-Trinitarians, eschewed Christmas and Easter, and in past times were much more Biblically oriented than they are today. Through its leadership, the SDA organization has been taken over by ecumenically minded individuals who would rather be accepted by the World Council of Churches, than by the suffering Savior of mankind.
Rather than break all ties with the parent organization, the Carlsons’ ministry seeks out Adventists to inform them of what is going on in their Church, encouraging them to return to their historic roots. Although by far the majority of SDAs are either asleep, or part and parcel with liberal doctrinal changes, there is a dedicated minority, such as Richard and Bonnie Carlson, who keep alive their historical teachings. A 2002 issue of TET included the following information:
The Trinity doctrine did not exist in the SDA Church from its inception. It was not a doctrine at all during Ellen G. White’s lifetime to her death in 1915.
The pioneers of the SDA Church, R.F. Cottrell, Sr., and Jr., D.T. Bordeau, D.M. Canright, J.N. Andrews, Loughborough, John Matteson, A.C. Bordeau, A.T. Jones, W.W. Prescott, E.G. White, James White, and Uriah Smith, were all in agreement that it was that “old Trinitarian absurdity” perpetrated from Rome. The Apostle Paul saluted the brethren, “Grace to you and peace from God our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ,” Romans 1:7. Paul was no Trinitarian! Adventist P.S. Cottrell wrote in the July 6, 1869, issue of Review & Herald, “To hold to the doctrine of the Trinity is not so much an evidence of evil intention as of intoxication from that wine of which all nations have drunk. The fact that it was one of the leading doctrines, if not the very chief, upon which the bishop of Rome was exalted to the popedom, does not say much in its favor . . . . This should cause men to investigate it for themselves, as when the spirits of devils working miracles undertake the advocacy of the immortality of the soul.”
In 1931, after the death of anti-Trinitarian pioneer Uriah Smith, the SDA Church attracted Trinitarians, who began promoting their doctrines, while falsely accusing the pioneers of being “Arian,” claiming that Arius taught that “the Holy Spirit was a creation of the Son.” In 1946, in the book, Evangelism, editors LeRoy Edwin Froom and Roy Allen Anderson compiled E.G. White’s statements removed from their original context, and intentionally inserted the word “Trinity” in subtitles, to advance the Trinity doctrine, even though she and all the pioneers were anti-Trinitarian. Perhaps it was a coincidence, but Froom wrote his book after a return from a trip to the Vatican. Ex-Jesuit priest Alberto Rivera testified on video that the Jesuit Order was instructed by the Black Pope to infiltrate the SDA Church, and bring it over to Rome.
The Trinity Doctrine is essential to unification of all Churches under Rome. As Roman Catholic Graham Greene wrote, “Our opponents sometimes claim that no belief should be held dogmatically which is not explicitly stated in scripture . . . . But the Protestant Churches have themselves accepted such dogmas, as the Trinity, for which there no such precise authority in the Gospels,” (“Assumption of Mary,” Life magazine, October 30, 1950, p. 51).
In 1958, the Trinity was unofficially introduced into the Church when the book, Questions On Doctrine, was published at the request of evangelicals Barnhouse and Martin, who were preparing to write their book, Kingdom of the Cults, and call the SDA Church a “cult,” until the SDA Church leaders quickly changed SDA doctrines. This avoided the stigma of being labeled a “cult,” as Barnhouse and Martin would label all anti-Trinitarians.
In 1968, the SDA Church officially joined the World Council of Churches and National Council of Churches, which require every church to include the Trinity in their statement of beliefs in order to become member churches.
In 1981, SDA General Conference President, Neal C. Wilson, announced to the General Conference meeting in Dallas, Texas, that the Church had officially adopted the Trinity doctrine, which was now #2 in the Church’s “27 Fundamental Beliefs.” Wilson said, “There is another universal and truly catholic organization, the Seventh-day Adventist Church,” (Adventist Review, March 5, 1981, p. 3).
Richard Carlson laments, along with the prophet, “How is the faithful city become an harlot!” Isaiah 1:21. Carlson states that the major signs that identify the great false church are the Trinity doctrine, worshipping three gods in one or one god in three; and Sunday-keeping, worshipping the pagan sun god. And, he states, the major signs that identify God’s true remnant Church are the worship of the Father and His Son, and Sabbath-keeping, worshipping the one true God on the sacred Sabbath of the Lord thy God.
Evangelist Carlson cites numerous quotations from the SDA prophetess, Ellen G. White, which predicted that, after her death, there would be an apostasy in her church. “Leading Adventists who have rejected the light are fired with madness against God’s holy law, as the Jewish nation was against the Son of God. They are in a terrible deception, deceiving others and being deceived themselves,” (2T 452). “We should study the nature, character, and extent of this spiritual wickedness in high places, lest we become the dupes of the powers of darkness,” (Signs of theTimes, March 14, 1911). “One thing it is certain is soon to be realized — the great apostasy — which is developing and increasing and waxing stronger, and will continue to do so until the Lord shall descend from heaven with a shout. We are to hold fast the first principles of our denominated faith, and go forward from strength to increased faith. Ever we are to keep the faith that has been substantiated by the Holy Spirit of God from the earlier events of our experience until the present time,” (Special Testimonies Series B #7, p. 57).
“I saw the nominal church and nominal Adventists, like Judas, would betray us to the Catholics to obtain their influence to come against the truth. The saints will then be an obscure people, little known to the Catholics; but the churches and nominal Adventists who know of our faith and customs (for they hated us on account of the Sabbath, for they could not refute it) will betray the saints and report them to the Catholics as those who disregard the institutions of the people; that is, that they keep the Sabbath and disregard Sunday” (Spalding and Magan Collection of E.G. White’s writings, p. 1).
“It required a desperate struggle for those who would be faithful to stand firm against the deceptions and abominations which were disguised in sacerdotal garments and introduced into the church . . . . The doctrine of religious freedom was termed heresy, and its upholders were hated and proscribed” (4 SOP 46). Mrs. White warned, “We hoped that there would not be the necessity for another coming out” (MR 895). She warns that “Sleeping preachers preach to sleeping people” (2T 337, 340).
“God has a people in the world now, whom He has set for the defense of His law; and we need not be surprised, or in any way discouraged, if we have to meet the same spirit of enmity . . . . There are just such teachers now. They will not obey the plainest requirements of the word of God; and after they have turned from the light themselves, they use all their influence to lead others to reject it also . . . . They may be professedly serving Christ; but they have changed masters, and are wholly on the enemy’s side. . . . These false teachers manifest the same spirit toward those who keep the commandments of God that the scribes and Pharisees manifested toward Christ” (Signs of the Times, August 5, 1886).
“I tell you now, that when I am laid to rest, great changes will take place. . . . 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” (Manuscript 1, Feb. 24, 1915). Thus ends words of warning by Ellen G. White, founder of the SDA Church. Historical Adventists like Carlson feel their Church has been hijacked.
There are many problems with SDA teachings, and E.G. White’s prophetic credentials. See our free article, “We are Sabbath-Keepers, Not Seventh-day Adventists.” Nevertheless, it is true that historic Adventists were much more attuned to the Word of God than the majority of SDAs today.
Ellen G. White would not be welcome in today’s Seventh-day Adventist Church! Dr. Samuele Bacchiocchi laments the fact that certain SDA churches in California are dominated by homosexuals, who openly promote their deviate lifestyle.
And so, as it is with Adventists, the same thing is happening, or has already occurred, in the Seventh Day Church of God, the Worldwide Church of God, etc. Satan is angry with anybody who holds and practices Bible truth. Many professing Christians have departed from their former Biblical teachings. The glory is departed from their former obedience to God, and their close relationship with Him.
During the time of the judges of Israel, a corrupt leader Eli judged Israel. His two sons, Hophni and Phinehas, defiled the sacrifices to the Lord, and even lay with women who assembled at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation. Eli did not restrain them, and as a result, Israel was smitten before the Philistines, Hophni and Phinehas were slain, and the Ark of the Covenant was taken by the Philistines, and at the catastrophic news, Eli fell over backwards, broke his neck, and died. See I Samuel 2:12-17, 22-25, 3:13, 4:1-22.
Phinehas’ wife was pregnant at this time, and upon receiving the evil tidings that the ark of God was taken, and that her husband and father-in-law were dead, she began labor pains. Before she died in labor, she had a son, whom she named, “Ichabod,” which means “Where is the glory?” or “There is no glory.” In her dying breath, the wife of Phineas exclaimed, “The glory is departed from Israel: for the ark of God is taken,” I Samuel 4:22.
This did not have to happen. The leadership of Israel became corrupt, and the people let it be so. “The word of the Lord was precious [few and far between] in those days,” I Samuel 3:1. Only a few, such as Elkanah and Hannah, parents of Samuel, were sincerely serving the Eternal. May we all be like them!
You have no doubt seen the Pope and other Catholic leaders in their regalia, including the miter, a hat which looks like a fish head. Likewise, you have seen the fish symbol, which many professing Christians use as a symbol for Christ. Both did not originate in Christianity, but were borrowed directly from paganism.
The national god of the seafaring Philistines was Dagon, the fish god, Judges 16:23. Dagon had the face and hands of a man, and the tail of a fish. In I Samuel 5, we see that when the Philistines captured the Ark of God, they placed it in the temple of Dagon in Ashdod. In the morning, the Philistines discovered that the statue of Dagon had fallen to the ground before the ark of the Lord. This happened the second day, and the head of Dagon and his hands were cut off, leaving only the fishy stump. Ashdod and the surrounding towns were smitten with emerods (hemorrhoids, or tumors). When the Ark was moved to Gath, the same plague occurred with a very great destruction. They then sent the Ark to Ekron, which suffered the same. These folks demanded that the Ark be sent back to Israel lest they be consumed.
The modern Catholic miter is a direct copy of the headdress of the pagan priests of Dagon. The word mitre or miter, comes from the Persian mithras, the god of light and truth. Popes, bishops, and cardinals wear the miter.
The fish symbol has been used for thousands of years as a religious symbol associated with the pagan Mother Goddess. In China, the Great Mother Kwan-yin was often portrayed in the shape of a fish. In India, the Goddess Kali was called the “fish-eyed one.” In Egypt, Isis was called the “Great Fish of the Abyss.” In Greece, the Greek word, Delphos, meant both fish and womb, derived from the ancient Oracle at Delphi, who worshipped the original fish goddess, Themis. Throughout the Mediterranean, mystery religions used fish, wine, and bread for their sacramental meat. In Scandinavia, the Great Goddess was named Freya; fish were eaten in her honor, and the sixth day of the week was named “Friday” after her. She was the same as the Roman Venus, the Pagan Goddess of Love. In the Middle East, the Great Goddess of Ephesus was portrayed as a woman with a fish amulet over the reproductive area.
The fish was revered throughout the Roman Empire, and the professing Christian Church authorities insisted on using the fish symbol. The fish headdress of the priests of Ea (a Sumero-Semitic god) later became the miter of the Christian bishops. Eating fish on Friday and the fish symbol representing the deity were all taken over by the Church from pagan sources.
The goddess Cybele had a miter on her head, strikingly similar to the fish head of Dagon. Cybele was worshipped in Rome, and was also called the Magna Mater, meaning “Great Mother,” or the great queen mother goddess, which evolved into Catholic Mariology. The priesthood of Cybele was composed of castrated males, which parallels the celibate priesthood of Catholicism. The basilica of Saint Peter, according to some, stands upon the former site of Cybele’s main temple in Rome. The ruins of another temple to Cybele (Magna Mater) can still be seen today in Rome on Palatine hill.
Here are two representations of Dagon: Dagon from Ancient Pagan and Modern Christian Symbolism (left) and Smith’s Bible Dictionary (right).
The Greek historian, Berosus, tells of unusual creatures who came to the Babylonians after the flood. It was said that they were part man, part fish, and they were educators of the Babylonians. These people were described as: “. . . sea monsters with the reason and speech of men, but with a fish’s head above a man’s head and a fish’s tail behind a man’s legs. The first of these beings, [Berosus] says, ‘appeared out of the Erythraean Sea where it borders on Babylonia,’ and ‘taught the Babylonians to construct cities, to found temples, to compile laws, and explained to them the principles of geometrical knowledge’.” The story said that after this first creature, a second one appeared which Berosus called a “sea daemon.” Then a third one came: “. . . whose name was ‘Odacon,’ which is equivalent to ‘O’Dagon’ — ‘the Dagon’ or ‘the Fish’.” (See The Worship of the Dead, Colonel J. Garnier, p. 45.)
“In the Bible, Dagon is mentioned as one of the prominent gods of the Phoenicians. But, again, there are strong evidences that Dagon was Nimrod . . . . All scholars agree that the name and worship of Dagon were imported from Babylonia,” (The Catholic Encyclopedia, 1913, Encyclopedia Press, Inc.).
In their veneration and worship of Dagon, the high priest of paganism would actually put on a garment that had been created from a huge fish! According to Layard, “The head of the fish formed a miter above that of the old man, while its scaly, fan-like tail fell as a cloak behind, leaving the human limbs and feet exposed,” Babylon and Nineveh, Austen Henry Layard, p. 343.
Alexander Hislop says, “The two-horned miter, which the Pope wears, when he sits on the high altar at Rome and receives the adoration of the Cardinals, is the very miter worn by Dagon, the fish-god of the Philistines and Babylonians,” (The Two Babylons, Hislop, p. 215).
According to Egyptian mythology, when the judges found Osiris [Nimrod] guilty of corrupting the religion of Adam and cut up his body, they threw the parts into the Nile. It was said that a fish ate one of these chunks and became transformed. Later, Isis [Semiramis] was fishing along the river bank when she fished up a half-man, half-fish. This sea creature was Dagon, the reincarnated Nimrod.
According to Hislop, “Is it known . . . that the Emperor of China, in all ages, even to the present year, as high priest of the nation, once a year prays for and blesses the whole nation, having his priestly robes on and his miter on his head, the same, the very same, as that worn by the Roman Pontiff for nearly 1200 years? Such is the fact. . . . The reader must bear in mind, that even in Japan, still farther distant from [Babylon] than China itself, one of the divinities is represented with the same symbol of might as prevailed in Assyria,” (The Two Babylons, Hislop, p. 216).
According to The Catholic Encyclopedia, “As to the ritual of his worship . . . we only know from ancient writers that, for religious reasons, most of the Syrian peoples abstained from eating fish, a practice that one is naturally inclined to connect with the worship of a fish-god.”
Whether they realize it or not, they are practicing the ancient pagan rite of worshipping Dagon. And this also explains the symbol for Christianity, the fish, which is Dagon. And Dagon is the representation of Nimrod resurrecting out of the ocean depths as a half-man, half-fish. What is really “fishy” is the lamentable fact that few Sabbath-keeping Churches dare to tell the truth about the prevalent paganism in professing Christianity.
Trinitarian Christians continue to use the pagan fish symbol of Dagon, and deceptively contend that “ichthys,” the Greek word for fish is an acronym for “Jesus the Christ, God’s Son, Savior.”
Here is one explanation: “The fish, ichthys in Greek, is the symbol for the Savior Jesus Christ. It was so used already in the first century [but not during the time of the Apostles], not primarily because fish played a part in Jesus’ life or because He appointed His apostles to be spiritual fisherman using the net of the Gospel, but because ichthys could be used as a rebus from which one could derive a statement of faith. The word consists of these five letters of the Greek alphabet: i-ch-th-y-s. When these five letters are regarded as initials for five words, we obtain this Christian declaration: Iesous Christos Theou Yios Sorter. These words say: Jesus Christ, God’s Son, Savior.
“Very likely the ichthys symbol was used as a sign by which early Christians found and identified one another, especially in times of persecution. When scrawled on a wall or on the ground in the marketplace or near a fountain where people congregated, it let wandering Christians know that others of their faith had come to this community. . . .
“We can testify to our Christian faith today through the symbol of the ichthys, perhaps wearing it as a piece of jewelry or posting it as a door plate. When people ask what the picture of the fish means, we have a golden opportunity to explain who Jesus Christ is and what He means to us,” (Symbols and Their Meaning, p. 19).
— written by Richard C. Nickels W