Seventh-day Adventists have never had the numbers in their home base – the USA – to have electoral influence. Because of the mind-set created by this situation and their expectation that before the return of Christ, which they expect “soon”, they will face persecution, they have typically been subservient to governments everywhere, arguing that they…… Continue reading From Political Subservience to Political Power and Influence: Seventh-day Adventists in Papua-New Guinea
Church-sect theory, when applied, as it typically has been, to sects in single societies where they began schismatically, has proved to be full of insights concerning the development of sects/new religious movements (Pope 1942; Yinger 1946, 1957; Wilson 1970, 1990; Stark and Bainbridge, 1985). My own research on Seventh-day Adventism in the U.S., where it…… Continue reading Broadening the Boundaries of Church-Sect Theory: Insights from the Evolution of the Non-schismatic Mission Churches of Seventh-day Adventism
This piece considers the ways in which the terms ‘cult’, ‘sect’ and ‘denomination’ are used in everyday language, within Christian circles and in sociology, and tests the applicability of these senses of the terms to Seventh-day Adventism. Presentation developed for a service of the Metro New York Adventist Forum Click here for a PDF version…… Continue reading Adventists: Cult, Sect or Denomination?
I am completing an ambitious sociological study of global Adventism. My research has taken me to 56 countries in all divisions of the world church. Today I will focus on Africa and Papua-New Guinea, both of which have pervasive animist cultures. I will share with you some vignettes that will raise some issues where I…… Continue reading Questions Concerning the Relevance of Adventist Teachings in Animist Cultures
In this reworking of a dissertation, this ethicist/theologian considers the history of the Adventist Church, and finds that it has been largely silent on issues concerning human rights. However, when he examines some case studies, he concludes that there has been some variation over time, with peripheral interest in some issues by a few pioneers…… Continue reading Review of ‘The Silent Church: Human Rights and Adventist Social Ethics’
This book, edited by the chair of the Department of World Mission at Andrews University, home of the Adventist Seminary, with contributions from 30 scholars, administrators, pastors, teachers, and laypersons involved in cross-cultural missions and drawn from all continents, assesses the state of Adventist missions and the issues facing them. The book is divided into…… Continue reading Review of ‘Adventist Mission in the 21st Century’
Seventh-day Adventist missionaries entered Kenya in 1906. Because they were relatively late on the scene, and the British colonial government policy discouraged direct competition between missions, they concentrated their efforts for the first several decades on the region of western Kenya near Lake Victoria. Their efforts met with considerable success, so that by 1991 Adventists…… Continue reading Book Review: Religion and Social Change in Kenya