The Last Countdown

Originally published at Sunday, January 24, 2010 13:43 in German at www.letztercountdown.org

Iceberg ahead!For quite a long time I was reluctant to start this web site and publish it on the Internet. Since 2005, I discussed with brothers and sisters of our church the things that I believe I discovered through observation of world events and Bible studies, particularly of prophecy. My studies were showing that it was high time to prepare for the Loud Cry and to leave the cities, while still reaching them. But the general response was: "Oh yes, that's quite interesting. Well, we'll see whether you're right." And that was all that the great majority had to say.

Nobody responded. Nobody saw that everything preached since 1844 was now actually looming before us as the Seventh-day Adventist Church and the whole world. The "virgins" had all fallen asleep as Jesus depicted so impressively in the parable. Very few wanted to know where we really were in the flow of prophetic time. There were only a few brethren in Canada who diligently studied with a detailed timetable for the very last events. Their timetable, however, had a small weakness because it began exactly 295 days before the proclamation of the Sunday law in the U.S. and was not that helpful if you wanted to know how far away the Sunday Law really was. Nobody knew when the 295 days—and thus the whole time table—would start. Anyway, the majority figured that such a calculation would be unbiblical and even clearly contradictory to the Spirit of Prophecy (Ellen G. White) without even questioning whether there could be some truth in it.

What happened to Adventists? When I was baptized in 2003 as a Seventh-day Adventist, I was happy to have finally found the church that had all the prophetic knowledge that I had been searching for in vain for 25 years. Initially, I was fortunate to be with some brethren in a small town in Spain who actually understood a lot about the writings of the Spirit of Prophecy and many of my questions were answered. But soon I realized that many had stopped looking or never started to look for signs for the fulfillment of the prophecies in their environment, politics, science, and especially at the throne of the beasts of Revelation 13 and 17.

Later, when I came into the mission field in South America, my bad opinion of the vigilance of the church was reinforced. My brethren here were all completely satisfied to know that some day a "National Sunday Law" in the U.S. would be proclaimed, that we would face some hard times, that only then we would have to be pure vessels for the outpouring of the Holy Spirit—the Latter Rain—and that anyway Christ would come soon to lead us home to the heavenly mansions. The vast majority did not even know the writings of the Spirit of Prophecy.  Over and over again, whole congregations would stare at me in disbelief when I preached that the Sunday Laws were approaching. They had never even heard about this from their pastors.

How can we explain this apathy? Our preparation for the last events should be especially focused on the "sanctification" of our lives and families, and on the proclamation of the Three Angels' Messages (Revelation 14). But in my country in South America, they knew nothing about the general principles of the Health Reform, which Ellen White inextricably linked with the Third Angel's Message. Nor did the brethren have any idea about the difficulties ahead for the church and the world. I began to talk to many elders and pastors, and then I was faced with even more lack of comprehension. I was told plainly that it was not our business to understand the future, and that no one could ever interpret prophecy correctly. Some of them even preached that there would never again come a persecution of the remnant—that this had already been fulfilled at the destruction of Jerusalem and would never happen again!

The longer I beheld the church, the more I had to admit to myself that my brethren did not really like the fact that Jesus was returning soon. What could be seen only subtly in Spain was already visible throughout the whole church in South America. They were reluctant to have their lives cleansed by Christ in the Investigative Judgment that began in 1844.  It was too much effort to lead a holy life BEFORE the outpouring of the Latter Rain and the Loud Cry. Most thought it was too disturbing to try to seriously tackle the issue of putting forth effort to cooperate with Christ so that He could eliminate the remaining defects in their characters. It was much more convenient to keep cherishing their ego.  The motto expressed by the life of my brethren was "I want to stay like I am".

I heard statements from the pulpit like: "Oh, the fasting of Christ in the desert? Let's not misunderstand this! The Bible was just written by men, and indeed the authors were using human language and their own imagination. No one can survive 40 days without food! A lot of fruit grew in the desert where Jesus was, of course: Here a pineapple, there a banana! The fasting of Jesus was only related to meat, and that was a horrible test of faith, like it would be for us too! But we're not Christ, and besides, we don't have to take the health reform as seriously here in South America because our animals are still healthy. There's no mad cow disease yet! And if we are invited to a place of non-believers, of course we may eat pork too, so as not to offend them! Even Christ did not take things too seriously! And anyway, God is love and would not want His children to chastise themselves". I could even tell you stories about my having seen ordained pastors eating pork in public at a Sabbath lunch after church, in a Seventh-day Adventist place, and offering it to others.

Such statements and behavior are unbiblical, non-Adventist, and positively dangerous! I could see that our brothers and sisters were not interested in sanctification of their lives, because the Spirit of Prophecy had disappeared from all preaching from the pulpit. Or do you think that it is correct that we should just preach the love of God and nothing else?

More and more I began to ask myself why the Bible describes so accurately and tells so precisely the last events.  And I wondered why these things were apparently of no interest to our brothers and sisters. According to Ellen White, the Old Testament prophets wrote less for their own time, and more for our "end time". And reading many books of Ellen White who was blessed by God in her life and who had received thousands of visions which contained prophetic statements among many other things, I noticed that we are only able to connect a few of those statements directly with the Bible. She always said that she was the "lesser light", which would lead to the study of the "Great Light", the Bible, and that if we were really studying the Bible as we should, it would not have been necessary for God to send her.

The fact is that most Adventists have incredible difficulties just to find the Sunday law in the Bible. Yeah sure, they know that the mark of the beast is Sunday observance. But if that is so important, and Ellen G. White wrote about it again and again, where is the announcement of the National Sunday Law in the United States recorded in the Bible? Well, who can tell me? Is it difficult? Or tell me, where are the big natural disasters of which the Spirit of Prophecy talks, if all the trumpets and seals have been fulfilled prophetically before 1844? Fine, so we still have Matthew 24 and Luke 21, but do these passages show the exact sequence of events? Or even more difficult: Where do we find the "national ruin of the United States" following the Sunday Law? Or, how can we show biblically the subsequent formation of a One World Government with the pope on top in a prophetic time line?

"Oh", you might say, "is this all that important?" Since the Spirit of Prophecy has pointed out hundreds of times that we have to study certain Bible passages and biblical books before the end comes, and since even Jesus Himself stressed on numerous occasions that we should study certain books, should it not be possible for us to show all these things in the Bible? Indeed it must be important to us because God does not point out anything unimportant!

But why is it important? Why does God take the trouble to let us know so many details about the last events? Jesus Himself answers these questions:

And now I have told you before it come to pass, that, when it is come to pass, ye might believe. John 14:29

Biblical prophecy, given by God, has one single purpose: It is to facilitate two chances for those who understand prophecy correctly. First, to rescue their own lives, and then to warn others and exhort them to also accept the gracious gift of the Lord. The last great warning that all Adventists who will be sealed will give to humanity is called in Adventist language "The Loud Cry"! The sealed ones, the 144,000 according to the Bible, will sound the Loud Cry just before the close of probation under very difficult circumstances for themselves. It is under persecution by a world government under the rule of the papacy, and under pressure of secular laws which will oppose the laws of God. It will be almost impossible for the "saints who keep the commandments of God," under threat of sanctions and even death, to be faithful to God without transgressing the laws of man and thus be treated as "criminals". Under all these terrible circumstances the great commission of Matthew 28:18-20 will be completed and the true gospel of Jesus will be preached for the last time all around the world. And then shall the end come.

The Advent people must be ready to do the job of sounding the Loud Cry. First of all, that means to be ready to receive the Holy Spirit, the "Latter Rain". No one will receive the "refreshing" of the Holy Spirit unless they have learned to live a holy life.  The Holy Spirit is poured out into "pure vessels" only. The 144,000 will work together with Jesus and mold their characters to become pure and Christ-like. The Investigative Judgment will end once they are all sealed by the Holy Spirit and have given the last great warning to the world.

But not just that! These are the people who will obtain such a close relationship with Jesus through Bible study and constant prayer that they will become similar to their Master in everything. Jesus was the Great Teacher, and He knew the Scriptures like no other. After His resurrection, He interpreted to the disciples on the way to Emmaus everything that was prophesied about Him in the Old Testament, including His coming and His work on earth. He was an extraordinary expert in Old Testament prophecy! After all, from the first page to the last, the Bible is about Jesus.  He is the Creator of the universe, and He prepared the plan of redemption for a lost world even before its creation. The yet unfulfilled prophecies of the Old and New Testament are soon to be fulfilled before our very eyes, and many of the prophecies which were previously fulfilled in the course of history symbolically will even be repeated in literal manner. We are already in the midst of these last and rapid events, and yet many have closed their eyes rather than try to develop themselves in preparation for the Loud Cry.  The Bible teaches how: it was shown already by their Great Master.

We Adventists recognize ourselves as the third Elijah. The first was the prophet himself, the second was John the Baptist who announced the first coming of Christ, and we are the third who are to announce the second coming of Christ. And this finds its culmination in the Loud Cry. Then shouldn't we be able to show other people everything that was prophesied about the second coming of Christ in the Bible? The statement of Jesus in Revelation 10:11, which is valid for the period after the Great Disappointment of 1844 until the close of probation, states:

And he said unto me, Thou must prophesy again before many peoples, and nations, and tongues, and kings. Rev 10:11

The Greek word prophēteuō that is used here, means "prophesy" or "to foretell events". Jesus therefore emphasized prophesy and not just general preaching! People in the last days of human history will be so hardened that God will have to use the last means He has in His treasure of measures to bring many to conversion and repentance at the very last moment: war, famine, pandemics, and death by crazed crowds because of fear and distress, who have no explanation or an incorrect understanding of the terrible events that are awaiting us very soon.

Then again, many Adventists believe that people would start waking up once we seriously preach that a National Sunday Law will be proclaimed in the United States with national ruin to follow, and that soon this Sunday law would spread over the whole planet. However, this is concentrated prophetic knowledge and these predictions came to the Advent people through the writings of Ellen G. White, so whoever doesn't believe in the Spirit of Prophecy of Ellen G. White—and (unfortunately) no one does except Adventists themselves—won't be converted even if these "extra-biblical" prophecies fulfill before their very eyes. Neither would I reconvert to Catholicism even if the prophecies of the Marian apparitions should all be fulfilled. Why not? Because I do not understand the overall context.  I know that these prophecies are unbiblical and therefore fake, and that I can only rely on the Bible which is the Word of God.

I understand very well from reading and comparing that Ellen G. White's work is absolutely biblically sound and is a blessing; that she has never said or written anything that contradicts the Bible. But non-Adventists do not have this deeper understanding. They only comprehend things at the level of their often inadequate biblical understanding. Nothing beyond. If the Loud Cry is heard under persecution, there won't be any more time for long and intensive Bible studies to compare with the Spirit of Prophecy. No more will people be converted by reading one or more 800-page books. Nobody will be able to sit down and study the "Great Controversy", because of the calamities that will be visiting our planet. It will all happen very quickly and under great suffering!

In the time of the Loud Cry, there will be only one question: Who is to blame for the misery and the horrible events on our planet, which lack any scientific explanation?

And there will be two different answers and explanations given by two different groups of people:

  1. The first group will say: "Those are guilty, who oppose the peace and security movement around the world and are keeping the Bible Sabbath instead of the universally recognized Day of Rest, the Peace and Family Day, the Sunday. They are conjuring the anger of Jesus which cannot be mitigated anymore, neither by Mary, nor saints, nor gods."
  2. And the second group will say: "Those are to blame who are keeping Sunday as a Day of Rest against the 4th commandment of God, and are persecuting a small minority of Christians who want to keep the original Ten Commandments of God, the Sabbath. And therefore they are conjuring the wrath of God, because they are 'touching the apple of His eye', His people."

Both groups will believe they are right. But only one group will persecute the other. The big difference between the groups is that one will just be arguing while the other is suppressing and punishing. One group will have all power on earth and take advantage of the legislative, judiciary, and executive branches of government to silence and even exterminate the other group.

Only one group will be truly pacifist and not harm one hair on anybody's head, yet they will be blamed by the others for all of the suffering on earth. They are the 144,000, which will consist of a few faithful Adventists and those who leave Babylon at the very last minute. I will explain this in a separate article later, because the general misunderstanding is incredibly great and there is a lot of erroneous preaching about it. There will only be a small group of people who have the truth, and they will suffer persecution and death because of it, just like their Lord, Jesus Christ, centuries before.  But those who understand all that before those events start will eventually see which group they must join before the door of mercy shuts if they want to be saved too. This is the Loud Cry: a persecuted group of peace-loving people who want to do only one thing, which is to obey their God, cost what it may...even if it is their own lives. What has not been fully accomplished in 2000 years of preaching the gospel will be ultimately achieved by this small group of people. The final decision of each person living as to whether he wants to join this group or not, will be made. Each will be either Pursuer or Pursued. And then the end will come!

Again, everything will happen as prophesied! There will be persecution because of the Sunday Laws, but the awakening of the people will not come through the Sunday Laws themselves, but through the persecution and suffering of a small minority of people who just want to obey and be faithful to their God and Lord.

Hence it must be demonstrated in advance that the Bible repeatedly points to the persecution of a minority of faithful witnesses of Jesus.  It must be shown that the Bible is telling us exactly how the power structures will form over the last days, who will stand at the helm of world government to unite the three big powers. If we could find all of that in the Bible and could also show that it is now fulfilling before our very eyes, and who is behind all of it, then many would realize which group is really responsible for all the miseries: the group which will assert world dominion and try to destroy the others. The group that will have the power for a short time to persecute God's children and kill them will take the blame.

Therefore the question becomes: who is currently planning a world government and who are the leading powers behind it? And almost more important: how far have their plans progressed? How long will it take for all this to be completed?

We Adventists know from the Bible and the Spirit of Prophecy who these leading powers are: the papacy and the U.S., which will encourage all the nations of the earth to choose the pope as their "ethical" leader. But we do not know how far the preparations of the enemy have progressed, because almost all of us are waiting stoically on the "green light": The National Sunday Law in the United States. But I say: then it will be too late to explain (or to prophesy) to the people that a persecuted minority will have the truth, because we would already be suffering persecution.  The declaration of the prosecuting power would be that we are persecuted because we are members of a "criminal cult" that violates national or international law. So at that point very few would even listen to what we have to say.

The key to success lies in the ravishingly simple statement of Christ:

And now I have told you before it come to pass, that, when it is come to pass, ye might believe. John 14:29

I would like to quote an article by Ellen G. White written in a time of crisis for the church. I am aware that it is not directly addressing the Sunday Law. Nevertheless, the method mentioned here for meeting hazards as a church are the same for all the attacks of the enemy:

An Iceberg! "Meet It"

Shortly before I sent out the testimonies regarding the efforts of the enemy to undermine the foundation of our faith through the dissemination of seductive theories, I had read an incident about a ship in a fog meeting an iceberg. For several nights I slept but little. I seemed to be bowed down as a cart beneath sheaves. One night a scene was clearly presented before me. A vessel was upon the waters, in a heavy fog. Suddenly the lookout cried, "Iceberg just ahead!" There, towering high above the ship, was a gigantic iceberg. An authoritative voice cried out, "Meet it!" There was not a moment's hesitation. It was a time for instant action. The engineer put on full steam, and the man at the wheel steered the ship straight into the iceberg. With a crash she struck the ice. There was a fearful shock, and the iceberg broke into many pieces, falling with a noise like thunder to the deck. The passengers were violently shaken by the force of the collisions, but no lives were lost. The vessel was injured, but not beyond repair. She rebounded from the contact, trembling from stem to stern, like a living creature. Then she moved forward on her way. {1SM 205.3}

Well I knew the meaning of this representation. I had my orders. I had heard the words, like a voice from our Captain, "Meet it!" I knew what my duty was, and that there was not a moment to lose. The time for decided action had come. I must without delay obey the command, "Meet it!". {1SM 206.1}

That night I was up at one o'clock, writing as fast as my hand could pass over the paper. For the next few days I worked early and late, preparing for our people the instruction given me regarding the errors that were coming in among us. {1SM 206.2}

I have been hoping that there would be a thorough reformation, and that the principles for which we fought in the early days, and which were brought out in the power of the Holy Spirit, would be maintained. {1SM 206.3}

First, I would like you to note that she "sent out the testimonies regarding the efforts of the enemy". Many Adventists argue that it is not our job to observe what the enemy does. But I agree with Ellen White that it is indeed also (!) necessary to "predict icebergs" in the fairway. And the largest iceberg that awaits us is probably the National Sunday Law in the U.S., because we know that our time of preparation must be completed beforehand. Wouldn't it be good for us to quickly "spy out this iceberg" a bit earlier to make up for lost time?

Secondly, I agree with Ellen G. White that there is no way to avoid the iceberg. That would—as with the Titanic—only lead to the destruction of the vessel (the church) and sink it. Compromises with these powers are impossible! The only chance is "full steam ahead toward the iceberg!" I try to meet it with my little website as far as my small funds allow. I spotted the Sunday Law, and another "iceberg", the appearance of the false Christ, from the lookouts and now ring the alarm bell and blow the trumpet, so we can fire up the engines and meet the obstacles at full power.

No obstacles ahead?Or have we already rammed an iceberg without noticing it, and our "Titanic" is already ripped from stem to stern and is about to sink into the eternal silence of the sea?  Have we felt too sure of ourselves, trusting in the designers and thinking that we were on an unsinkable ship? That would be a terrible realization and it would mean that we would have to leave the ship—as long as there is still space in the few lifeboats—the Titanic didn't have adequate provisions for all passengers to escape either.

When on the 10th of July, 2009 I received further proof of the correctness of my previous studies, I stopped hesitating and started working on this website. I know that I am very late, but our church is not a church that welcomes "new light" easily, and that's why nearly four years passed before I started this site. At this point I do not want to emphasize that I have "new light", but just that I caught sight of known hazards, and I think I know how far away we are from the collision. But I must also point out that I had no easy time with our brethren before I concluded that I have to publish my findings here. It is a decision based solely on prayer and faith in God. Whoever will criticize what he reads here is asked to please criticize me personally and spare the rest of the church because I do not act with its consent or approval. I do not attack, correct, or question any previous knowledge that builds the official pillars of the present truth, but on the contrary the reader will notice that old knowledge forms the basis for all new knowledge, and "new knowledge" confirms the old.

At first my findings were only as new as the knowledge that icebergs exist. The only question was: when will a collision occur, or has it already happened undetected? Since we as a church have the Spirit of Prophecy, then shouldn't we warn the church and the world day and night like Ellen White did in order to meet these threats coming our way with full steam ahead?

I studied hard and watched my surroundings. The conditions of our church in South America soon drove me to where I could no longer identify myself with it. I don't want to present here what I had to experience, because I know that there are many sincere brothers and sisters whom I do not want to hurt. But I just could not comprehend how much public sin was allowed, especially within the leadership of the Seventh-day Adventist Church. Apparently all of them were struck with blindness. I asked God for clarification. I prayed day and night for many months, even years. The Lord slowly opened the door to these studies, which led to the Clock of God in Orion. First, I realized what was going on Behind Enemy Lines and that the seven seals were repeating after 1844 on the model of "Jericho" and that, as Ellen White frequently stated, History Repeats and thus the seven churches repeat.

I realized that in their repetition, the second and third seal clearly represent the two great World Wars, which are also mentioned in Matthew 24 and Luke 21. But where were the martyrs of Smyrna within our ranks during that period who had died for their faith keeping the Ten Commandments, corresponding to the first cycle of the seals? These and similar questions made me very uneasy. I began to study the history of the Adventist Church, and I discovered terrible facts! I was shaken to the core of my faith and I think many of you will be shaken as well when you read what God has to show us, especially, my dear brethren, in the terrific way He does it!

I found strange advice in the testimonies of Ellen White. For example:

The fifth chapter of Revelation needs to be closely studied. It is of great importance to those who shall act a part in the work of God for these last days. There are some who are deceived. They do not realize what is coming on the earth. Those who have permitted their minds to become beclouded in regard to what constitutes sin are fearfully deceived. Unless they make a decided change they will be found wanting when God pronounces judgment upon the children of men. They have transgressed the law and broken the everlasting covenant, and they will receive according to their works. {9T 267.1}

Ellen White spoke of a deception of a group of people. Who is this group? These lines are addressed to us as Seventh-day Adventists. Could it be that some of us have been deceived? And if so, whom? Does anyone understand the meaning of this strange message? This website gives the answers and I pray that you are among those "who sigh and cry for the abominations that be done in the city [our church]", because only those and no one else will receive the Seal of God (according to Ezekiel 9).

I hope that you, dear brother, dear sister, dear visitor of this site, will study with prayer what I have published here. Everyone is responsible for himself and must obey his inner voice when it comes to recognizing the truth. I would like to let the Spirit of Prophecy, which our church has been so richly blessed by, direct the last words of this introductory article to you:

The Need of the Church

This world is to the Christian a land of strangers and enemies. Unless he shall take for his defense the divine panoply and wield the sword of the Spirit he will become the prey of the powers of darkness. The faith of all will be tested. All will be tried as gold is tried in the fire. {5T 104.2}

The church is composed of imperfect, erring men and women, who call for the continual exercise of charity and forbearance. But there has been a long period of general lukewarmness; a worldly spirit coming into the church has been followed by alienation, faultfinding, malice, strife, and iniquity. {5T 104.3}

Should there be less sermonizing by men who are unconsecrated in heart and life, and were more time devoted to humbling the soul before God, then might we hope that the Lord would appear to your help and heal your backslidings. Much of the preaching of late begets a false security. Important interests in the cause of God cannot be wisely managed by those who have had so little real connection with God as some of our ministers have had. To entrust the work to such men is like setting children to manage great vessels at sea. Those who are destitute of heavenly wisdom, destitute of living power with God, are not competent to steer the gospel ship amid icebergs and tempests. The church is passing through severe conflicts, but in her peril many would trust her to hands that will surely wreck her. We need a pilot on board now, for we are nearing the harbor. As a people we should be the light of the world. But how many are foolish virgins, having no oil in their vessels with their lamps. May the Lord of all grace, abundant in mercy, full of forgiveness, pity and save us, that we perish not with the wicked! {5T 104.4}

In this season of conflict and trial we need all the support and consolation we can derive from righteous principles, from fixed religious convictions, from the abiding assurance of the love of Christ, and from a rich experience in divine things. We shall attain to the full stature of men and women in Christ Jesus only as the result of a steady growth in grace. {5T 105.1}

Oh, what can I say to open blind eyes, to enlighten the spiritual understanding! Sin must be crucified. A complete moral renovation must be wrought by the Holy Spirit. We must have the love of God, with living, abiding faith. This is the gold tried in the fire. We can obtain it only of Christ. Every sincere and earnest seeker will become a partaker of the divine nature. His soul will be filled with intense longing to know the fullness of that love which passes knowledge; as he advances in the divine life he will be better able to grasp the elevated, ennobling truths of the word of God, until by beholding he becomes changed and is enabled to reflect the likeness of his Redeemer. {5T 105.2}

< Home                       Next >

Our New Website!