The Georgia Dome formed the venue for an historic event to which I was privileged to bear witness. With soul-stirring eloquence, the 20th president of the General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists delivered an appeal for the church to go forward in fulfillment of God’s commission.
His appeals to the tenets of sola scriptura and prima scriptura, as well as to the relevance of Spirit of Prophecy in God’s remnant church touched resonating cords in me. His firm resolve to give God the glory for the spoken word even in congregational response thrilled my soul. The unabashed rebukes of doctrines and practices that step out of line with God’s revelation were refreshing to hear from one in a position of authority. And the proclamation of the three angels’ messages as a message of grace brought joy to my heart.
Out of principle, I have prayed for the leaders of this church with greatest responsibilities. But for the first time in all my years in this church, I actually felt the stirring in my soul to pray for our leaders at the General Conference – that God would shield them from the enemy’s attacks; that He would grant them grace to bear their burdens; that they, individually, would be saved. I could resonate with the message: It was a sermon to which I could say a resounding Amen.
Hearing the president of our General Conference speak to the matters that have troubled my mind, and addressing them so pointedly from the Bible, affirmed my faith. In an odd way, it gave me a sense of ownership of my church. And it renewed my commitment to the unashamed proclamation of the Advent message, by God’s grace.
Whenever Israel, in the Bible, had a godly leader, they would experience revival and reformation. The convictions of one man in a position of authority can shape a generation. May God help us.