Ever since The Fall, mankind has been mortal. While the promise of Eternal Life was given to the race through the Savior Jesus Christ, the rebellious have in all ages applied their genius to acquire by other means the unending youth the race was designed to enjoy. The contrast in those who look in faith to the Savior versus those who try to obtain it another way is shown in the story of the first martyr, Abel, who looked forward in faith to the promised Messiah as he offered his sacrifice in the prescribed manner. Cain, by contrast, thought to acquire eternal life by the fruits of his own efforts.
In recent times, the study of genetics has opened new possibilities in the quest for immortality, and the same contrast is seen between those who hope in their Savior and those who try by knowledge to find another way. Those aware of their own insufficiency see in the human genome a magnificent design that is coping remarkably well under the cumulative strain of six thousand years of abuse, degradation, and the continual pressure of morbid influences. Knowing their days are numbered, they cry out to God for salvation and a final end to the wretchedness of sin.
And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life. (1 John 5:11-12)
The rebellious, however, see in the field of genetics an opportunity to find by their own cunning the long sought-after fountain of youth in a suppressed gene waiting to be discovered, which they hope will enable the body to regenerate itself indefinitely and thus grant immortality to their selfish existence. As the serpent in Eden promised immortality to Eve through the tree of knowledge, so today that old serpent, Satan, promises through the tree of scientific knowledge the immortality which he can never deliver.
Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. (John 14:6)
Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that entereth not by the door into the sheepfold, but climbeth up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber. (John 10:1)
The DNA structure itself is an object lesson for the character development of God’s people. The two sugar-phosphate backbones of the helix represent the spring and autumn seasons of the calendar of God, which are governed by the heavenly bodies as they scribe their helical path through space. Each base pair in the DNA ladder represents the possible feast days of one year (one spring-autumn combination) in the HSL (High Sabbath List). Each DNA codon, made up of three base pairs, represents one triplet of years in the HSL, and as each DNA codon encodes one amino acid of the gene, so each HSL triplet encodes one aspect or quality of the character of God’s people. Special DNA codons in the gene mark the start and end points of the sequence. In the field of genetic engineering, a double-stop (two stop codons one after the other) is used to ensure that gene translation does not accidentally continue beyond the desired end. This feature is also reflected in the HSL, showing not only that the sequence makes up the complete character definition of God’s people, but also that the end of history is sure.
Figure 1 – The HSL Resembles DNA Structure
In this article, I will explore the sought-after gene of eternal life which Jesus has made known to us, and the process by which this gene is activated in the human experience through the working of the Holy Spirit. The first part of this message applies to all of God’s faithful, while the second part pertains especially to the 144,000 who have a special purpose and therefore require special information for their character formation.
From time to time DNA strands become damaged and the cell machinery must scan and repair the anomalies. As we study the character traits necessary for eternal life, the reader might discover from time to time some anomalies in their own character that need to be corrected. This is part of the repair process moderated by the Holy Spirit to prepare God’s people for eternity. Thus, each HSL triplet represents not only a trait, but a standard to test one’s own character against and seek conformance to.
In summary form, the “codons” of the HSL represent the following:
2 A.M. – First and Second Angels’ Messages: God’s people will be ones who will recognize the reality of the Judgment. They will take God seriously and reverence Him. They will act in a way that honors Him. They will know when the Judgment is. They will worship Him and Him alone, because He is the Creator of all things. They will recognize the confusion of doctrines in the apostate churches.
S.D.A. – Seventh-day Adventist: The very name of this church was inspired by God, and His people will embrace the truths that have been preached by it. The two distinctive truths emphasized by its name will be of special import. First, that the seventh day (Saturday) is the Sabbath of God, as it is written in the fourth of the Ten Commandments. It begins at sunset on Friday and ends at sunset on Saturday. Second, that Jesus is coming again literally and every eye shall see Him—a biblical truth which stands in stark contrast to the spiritualistic ideas of today.
R.B.F. – Righteousness by Faith: God’s people will be ones who recognize their own unworthiness and insufficiency to live a righteous life. They will accept through faith in Jesus that their sins are blotted out, and His sacrifice for them inspires in them a reciprocal love that motivates their obedience to His law. Thus they will be sanctified (purified from sin) by their faith in Jesus as well as justified (forgiven of their sin).
In the HSL, the R.B.F. triplet is special. Whereas all of the triplets (except the first) represent intermediate stop “codons,” this one is also shown by prophecy to mark the first opportunity for God’s people to have welcomed the Second Coming of Jesus in its ending year of 1890. This is an indication that the first three characteristics of God’s people represent the standard to be attained by all who will receive eternal life, though in the last fearful days of earth’s history it will require a martyr’s death. Our ignorance in times past God winked at, but to knowingly reject any of these truths disqualifies a person from receiving eternal life.
S.o.P. – Spirit of Prophecy: Those who would go on in character development to be among the 144,000 will appreciate the fact that Ellen G. White was a true prophet (prophetess) in the full sense of the word. They will take her counsel and prophecies seriously, and live in a manner that is in harmony with her testimonies.
L.G.T. – Last Generation Theology: The 144,000 will recognize that they have a special role to fulfill in the plan of salvation. God is on trial. The accusation is that His Law is unjust, and can’t be kept by created beings. Although Jesus did everything necessary to redeem mankind, it is on mankind to demonstrate to the watching universe that God’s Law can indeed be kept by at least 144,000 of the weakest, most degenerated specimens of creation that have ever existed, through complete dependence on God.
H.N.C. – Human Nature of Christ: Jesus lived a sinless life as an example for us. The 144,000 must know that Jesus did not have any advantage over us in resisting sin. He came in the likeness of sinful flesh and was in all points tested like we are, yet without sin. In order to become a human, the Son of God gave up His omnipresence as a permanent sacrifice. He will remain human like us for the rest of eternity. This doctrine humbles by showing the magnitude of His sacrifice and comforts with thought that as He was taken up to heaven in His human form, so will the 144,000 see Him and be with Him in the flesh.
P.H.S. – Personality of the Holy Spirit: Although Jesus sacrificed His omnipresence, He sends the omnipresent Holy Spirit to be with us in His stead as His representative. The Holy Spirit is as personal as Jesus Himself, but not bound by the limitations of the human nature as Jesus is. It is through the Holy Spirit that Jesus lives in us. To deny the personality of the Holy Spirit is to reject the Person whom He represents, Jesus Himself. The 144,000 must discern this truth.
O.H.C. – Orion, HSL, and the Consequences: This threefold message was given in these last days for the express purpose of preparing the 144,000 for their mission. They are the last threefold test for those who have developed a character in harmony with all of the preceding points. The 144,000 will recognize their Savior in Orion pleading His blood for them. They will see in the “genetic structure” of the HSL the work that the Holy Spirit has been doing in their lives. And they will realize the gravity of the fact that God is on trial, and they are His witnesses, and the outcome of the case rests upon their testimony. An understanding of the consequences of their failure will inspire in them a love for God the Father heretofore unknown.
This triplet completes the “genetic sequence” that expresses the character of the 144,000. The three messages it carries are God’s last messages to mankind, which if received in faith and are allowed to do their work in the heart, will seal a soul as one of the 144,000. Translation of the gene should stop here, but in engineering this “gene,” God added one more stop triplet immediately after it to form a double-stop just in case the end would not be recognized in time (as it wasn’t in the R.B.F. triplet).
T.L.C. – The Loud Cry: This last triplet represents the sounding of the Loud Cry of the Fourth Angel, who lightens the world with His glory. These years span the little time of trouble and will see persecution and the end of the Investigative Judgment. There is no further message associated with this triplet; its message is the cumulative message of all the foregoing triplets. It serves as the last period of grace during which a person’s character can still be conformed to that of our Great Example.
The T.L.C. triplet is special because its “encoding” is identical to the R.B.F. triplet, and shows that this “stop codon” marks the second opportunity for God’s people to usher in the Second Coming. Being immediately preceded by another triplet makes this a “double-stop codon” indicating the sure termination of the “gene sequence” of the HSL. There will not be another opportunity if the 144,000 fail; this is the only chance left, and the stakes are infinitely high. Those who develop a character that reflects all of the preceding points will serve among the 144,000 and will be rewarded by receiving eternal life without ever tasting of death.
The meaning of each triplet will be explored in greater detail in the pages following.
The First and Second Angels’ Messages
This triplet of years represents the proclamation of the first and second angels’ messages of Revelation 14:6-8 by William Miller and Samuel Snow. Miller preached the coming of Judgment Day, which at that time was believed to be synonymous with the Second Coming, while Snow denounced the sins of the apostate Protestant churches which were on their way back to Rome.
Those who would receive everlasting life will need to have a character that reflects the first and second angels’ messages in their life.
The 1ST Angel’s Message: The Judgment Is Come
And I saw another angel fly in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach unto them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people, Saying with a loud voice, Fear God, and give glory to him; for the hour of his judgment is come: and worship him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters. (Revelation 14:6-7)
The first angel has the everlasting gospel, or never-ending good news, to share with the world. This is nothing less than the hope of eternal life. It is the same gospel that was given to Adam and Eve after the Fall (Genesis 3:15). The message of the first angel announces that the Judgment has come and makes known the requisites for eternal life. They are:
Fear God. The word “fear” in this sense means to reverence, respect and pay attention to God, not specifically to be afraid of Him (although wrong-doers should). God must have first place in a life for it to be worthy of eternity with Him.
Give glory to Him. The word “glory” means dignity, honor, praise, and worship. To give God glory is to act in a way that honors Him and reflects well on Him.
Why must we fear God and give glory to Him? Because, says the angel, the hour of His judgment is come. Judgment Day is here, and every living soul is being weighted in the balances.
The “hour” refers to a specific time. The Judgment takes place during a specific time interval. Those who are not aware of the time of the Judgment will not be prepared for it. One of the requirements to obtain eternal life is to pay attention to the time.
Worship Him that made. The angel instructs the world to worship the Creator. While hazards are coming upon the land from the sky, sea, and water sources, the world is reminded of Who created all these elements. He alone is worthy of our utmost loyalty, and God’s people will not betray Him no matter what calamities befall them or what coercion tactics civil government or fellow man use to influence them to relinquish their supreme allegiance to Him.
This triplet shows that God’s people must understand that the Judgment began in 1844, as proclaimed by the first angel.
The 2ND Angel’s Message: Babylon Is Fallen
And there followed another angel, saying, Babylon is fallen, is fallen, that great city, because she made all nations drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication. (Revelation 14:8)
This is the message that the Protestant churches had fallen back into the errors they had come out of. Although the message had been preached even earlier than the first angel’s message, it gained strength with the help of the Midnight Cry when the first angel’s message joined it.
Those who will be faithful to God must recognize that the churches are in a fallen state and are no longer teaching uncompromised truth or even progressing in the direction of truth.
In summary, we learn from the start triplet of the HSL that in order to receive eternal life, one must:
- Reverence God and take Him seriously
- Live in a way that honors God
- Worship the Creator
- Recognize that the Judgment period is here
- Study to know when Jesus will come
- Recognize that the Churches that follow Rome have apostatized
- Walk in the clear light of truth
The Seventh-day Adventist Church
The next triplet in the “genetic sequence” of the HSL marks the founding years of the organized Seventh-day Adventist Church. During those years, the publishing work was incorporated under the divinely inspired name of the denomination, and the first conferences were formed. The Orion and HSL messages are a prophetic confirmation of the fact that this church was God’s own church, and was given the light of truth like no other church. Thus, its teachings (in their uncompromised form) define the belief structure of those who will be in heaven.
Just as the call of the first angel’s message to “worship him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters” hearkens back to the fourth commandment, so does the “Seventh-day” part of the church’s name:
Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy. For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the LORD blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it. (Exodus 20:8,11)
Recognizing God as the Creator of this world and choosing to worship Him by reverencing Him and acting in a way that honors Him implies keeping the Seventh-day Sabbath, which begins at sunset on Friday night and ends at sunset on Saturday night. This is one of the Ten Commandments, and knowingly disregarding it would not bring honor to the One who asks for it to be remembered, not to mention the plagues will fall upon the transgressors of God’s law.
And the third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand, The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb: And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever: and they have no rest day nor night, who worship the beast and his image, and whosoever receiveth the mark of his name. (Revelation 14:9-11)
When the Church organized, the third angel’s message was so important that the Sabbath was incorporated into the very name of the organization. The church considered it their primary mission to spread the third angel’s message, and this triplet marks the official beginning of their organized work.
The Sabbath is a sign between God and His people. It is the foundation for the HSL, and the HSL in turn provides prophetic confirmation that the seventh day really does correspond to Saturday, not Sunday, for if it corresponded to Sunday, the High Sabbaths would not produce the same sequence of “genetic information” that we are examining in the HSL in these very pages. (Similarly, the HSL disproves the lunar Sabbath.)
The second part of the distinctive name of the church identifies God’s people as ones who are looking for his Second Advent in literal, personal, and glorious fashion, and that the Holy City with the Garden of Eden will be restored to this planet, which will be created anew. Among the false religions it is a common teaching that the second coming will be in a spiritual manner and that there will be a millennium of peace here on Earth (not to mention many other related false teachings). God’s people will be ones who are looking forward to a literal Second Coming:
For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. (1 Thessalonians 4:16-17)
Behold, he cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see him, and they also which pierced him: and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of him. Even so, Amen. (Revelation 1:7)
God’s people will not be among those who run here or there to catch a glimpse of whom they mistakenly think is Jesus.
Then if any man shall say unto you, Lo, here is Christ, or there; believe it not. (Matthew 24:23)
The 4TH Angel’s Message Begins: Righteousness by Faith
This triplet is unique because its ending year, 1890, is confirmed three ways as the year Jesus could have come. Numerous quotes of Ellen White indicate that Jesus could have come soon after 1888 had the light that shined in that year been accepted, but few are aware of the exact year. Ellen White knew, but she didn’t publish it in any of her official works.
Her closest friend, Haskell, quoted her as saying that we could have been in the Kingdom two years after 1888, which of course would be 1890. But we also have two bible prophecies that show the same thing. First, in the dialog between Jesus and the Jews:
Jesus answered and said unto them, Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up. Then said the Jews, Forty and six years was this temple in building, and wilt thou rear it up in three days? But he spake of the temple of his body. (John 2:19-21)
Jesus spoke of the temple of His body, which He would raise in three days. But there is also a prophetic significance to the three days: they represent the last three years of Earth’s history (a day for a year) when Jesus will raise up His body, the church (Colossians 1:18, 24). But what of the 46 years mentioned by the Jews?
For those who have studied in detail the history of 1888, the attitude of the Jews in this dialog should be reminiscent of the attitude of the seasoned Adventist leaders of 1888 who sneered at young Jones and Waggoner, their pride and body language effectively saying to them “Since 1844 was this church in building [by us], and wilt thou [youngsters] rear it up?” Now do the math:
1844 + 46 = 1890
But there is another time prophecy that points to this date. It is the first seven weeks of Daniel’s 70-week prophecy. Even Adventists admit in their Bible Commentary that no historical evidence whatsoever could be found to corroborate the fact that anything happened in that year to fulfill that initial segment of seven prophetic weeks from the going forth of the command, to the event (although the rest of the prophecy is applied fairly well).
Know therefore and understand, that from the going forth of the commandment to restore and to build Jerusalem unto the Messiah the Prince shall be seven weeks, and threescore and two weeks: the street shall be built again, and the wall, even in troublous times. (Daniel 9:25)
Now think for a moment: if the first seven weeks of this prophecy were not fulfilled in the original application, there must be a second application which does fulfill the seven weeks. The Jerusalem (Judah) of ancient Israel was a type for the Adventist Church among the Protestant churches. When was this “Jerusalem” we call the Adventist Church divinely commanded to be built? The HSL (and Ellen White) tell us clearly that the movement began in earnest in 1841. Now the math again:
1841 + (7 × 7) = 1890
There it is. Ellen White (through her best friend Haskell) tells us Jesus could have come in 1890 two years after 1888. Jesus Himself tells us in type that He could have come in 1890 exactly 46 years after the Orion start year of 1844. And Daniel prophesied the coming of the Messiah in 1890 seven weeks (49 years) after the HSL start year of 1841. Thus, this triplet marks a genuine opportunity for the people of God to go to heaven, making it not just an intermediate “stop codon” but what could have been the stop of the entire “genetic translation.”
The message of Righteousness by Faith, presented by A. T. Jones and E. J. Waggoner to the General Conference of the Seventh-day Adventist Church in session in 1888 is the next test for the faithful. As a result of rejecting it, several things changed:
- Like ancient Israel wandered in the desert for 40 years until all that wicked generation died away, and like the Israelites departing Babylonian captivity later delayed 2 × 40 years before returning to Jerusalem, so the Adventist church was destined to wander for its own period of 3 × 40 years until the entire church body would be consumed except for a few faithful souls like Joshua and Caleb who would go on into the promised land.
- No longer was the third angel’s message strong enough to stand on its own. It needed to await the mighty help of the angel of Revelation 18 in order to have its effect. Although that light began to shine with the message of Righteousness by Faith, the squelching of the light through the years prevented it from shining in its fullness until the present time, when a time message would once again be given to strengthen it, as the Midnight Cry strengthened the Second Angel’s Message.
- Those who would receive eternal life under the Three Angels’ Messages must now suffer death, either during the natural course of time (like Ellen White), or as a martyr in the time of trouble.
- The Adventist church must pass away as God’s people, just as Israel did, and be replaced by a new generation which would be faithful in their stead. That new generation is the 144,000.
The “codons” of the HSL represent tests. While they bring the issues of the day to a focal point for examination, they still encompass many areas. The health message in particular was introduced to the Church in the years before this triplet, and so it is part of this test. At the time it was revealed, science had not yet “caught up” enough to validate the message, but those who walked by faith received the message and made changes in their life according to it. This is how righteousness by faith works obedience in the believer’s life. Those who rejected the health message—or distorted it—set themselves up to fail the test of Righteousness by Faith, erring either on the side of “Let no man therefore judge you in meat, or in drink” (which corresponds to the erroneous teaching that “Jesus did everything on the cross”) or on the side of extremes that Ellen White called “health deform” instead of health reform (which corresponds to the error of trying to keep the law by human effort alone). The test of Righteousness by Faith encompasses the test of true temperance.
Those who allow God to work in their hearts and lives up to this point in the genetic sequence will receive eternal life, but only through death. The “codon” for this triplet of years represents one of two possibilities to enter the heavenly Canaan. It represents one of the two faithful churches of Revelation that will be granted everlasting life: the church of Smyrna, faithful unto death.
And unto the angel of the church in Smyrna write; These things saith the first and the last, which was dead, and is alive; I know thy works, and tribulation, and poverty, (but thou art rich) and I know the blasphemy of them which say they are Jews, and are not, but are the synagogue of Satan. Fear none of those things which thou shalt suffer: behold, the devil shall cast some of you into prison, that ye may be tried; and ye shall have tribulation ten days: be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life. He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; He that overcometh shall not be hurt of the second death. (Revelation 2:8-11)
Thus the “code sequence” of the character “gene” of the faithful martyrs ends here. Their willingness to die for the truths reflected in these first three triplets will show that their characters have been developed by Christ, and His righteousness will be imputed to them for their faithfulness.
Faith of our fathers, living still, In spite of dungeon, fire, and sword;
Oh, how our hearts beat high with joy Whene’er we hear that glorious Word!
Faith of our fathers, holy faith! We will be true to thee till death.
Our fathers, chained in prisons dark, Were still in heart and conscience free:
How sweet would be their children's fate. If they, like them, could die for thee!
Faith of our fathers, holy faith! We will be true to thee till death.
Faith of our fathers, we will strive To win all nations unto thee;
And through the truth that comes from God, We all shall then be truly free.
Faith of our fathers, holy faith! We will be true to thee till death.
Faith of our fathers, we will love Both friend and foe in all our strife;
And preach thee, too, as love knows how By kindly words and virtuous life.
Faith of our fathers, holy faith! We will be true to thee till death.
In the next article in this series, we will explore in detail the remaining “codons” in the HSL that define the character of the 144,000.