ENDTIME ISSUES NEWSLETTER No. 196

“THE SAGA OF VICARIUS FILII DEI ON THE PAPAL TIARA”

Samuele Bacchiocchi, Ph. D.,

Retired Professor of Theology,  Andrews University

 

INDEX OF TOPICS OF THIS NEWSLETTER

 

           * AN UPDATE: Popular Beliefs: Are they Biblical?

 

           * William Richardson’s book Speaking in Tongues is out

            and is ready for shipping

 

           * Cristina Picardi’ New DVD Recording done in Loma Linda

            on February 8-10, 2008.

 

         * “The Saga of Vicarius Filii Dei  on the Papal Tiara”

            This is the essay of this newsletter which is excerpted from

            the DVD  recording on The Mark and Number of the Beast

 

           *  How to Contact the Center for Cancer Care that

            shut down 95% of my Liver Cancer

 

           * Forthcoming Rallies in England from March 1 to 15.

 

           * Prof. Jon Paulien’s DVD on Simply Revelation

 

           * SPECIAL OFFER on 12 DVD and CD albums for only

            $150.00,  instead of the regular price of $1150.00

 

           * New Video Recording of Prof. Roy Gane on the Sanctuary

 

           * Incredible Offer on the new Hitachi 3000 Lumens Projector

            Only $1395.00

 

           * The Smallest and most Powerful Remote Presenter

 

           * Does your church or School Need a Screen?

 

           * Bed and Breakfast in London, England.

 

AN UPDATE –  POPULAR BELIEFS: ARE THEY BIBLICAL? 

 

           The research and writing of the new book Popular Beliefs: Are They Biblical? is proceeding well. Currently I am working on chapter 9 which deals with the popular belief “Once Saved Always Saved.” I am writing this chapter in London, England, where Cristina Piccardi (an outstanding soprano) and myself, have been invited to present our seminars with words and songs at six rallies. By God’s grace, I plan to complete this chapter before leaving England on March 17, 2008.

 

           A research project of this nature has been very expensive in time and money. During this past year I have invested an average of 15 hours a day on this manuscript, because I believe it is desperately needed to call out of Babylon many sincere people who are sincerely seeking to know and to do the revealed will of God.

 

           There are million of sincere Christians who do not realize that most of their popular beliefs are biblically wrong, while our Adventist beliefs are biblically right.  This book Popular Beliefs: Are they Biblical? is designed to help these sincere Christians to re-examine their beliefs in the light of the normative authority of Scripture.

 

When Will the Book Be Out?

 

           God willing, I plan to complete the writing of the book by the end of March 2008, and have the book printed and ready for distribution two weeks later by April 15 (tax time). Eight of the ten chapters are done. I am now working on the two remaining chapters on “Once Saved Always Saved” and “Infant Baptism.” These should be completed rather speedily, because I have researched these subjects before.

 

           Your encouragement has meant a lot to me.  Four months ago I was ready shelf the project for the time being, especially because of the new ministry we started with Cristina Piccardi–a powerful and passionate soprano who touches the hearts of people and greatly enriches my seminars.  In my view, she is by far the best Adventist soprano in the Adventist Church.  Three years ago she won the first price at an international opera singers competition.

 

We present our SABBATH,  or ADVENT,  or  LIFESTYLE SEMINARS together with words and song. Cristina sings several sacred songs before and after each of my lectures. Her powerful and passionate singing moves people to tears. The reception and response we have received during the past four months has truly been incredible. If your church wishes to invite us, feel free to contact us by phone (269) 471-2915 or even better by email: <sbacchiocchi@biblicalperspectives.com>  We still have several open weekends in the latter part of this year.

 

Planning this new ministry has consumed a lot of my time, especially in processing  the invitations we are receiving from across the USA and overseas. This is why I was considering shelving the manuscript for the time being. But your letters caused me to reconsider my priorities. Some of you have reminded me that our Adventist Church desperately need Popular Beliefs: Are they Biblical?  to witness to people who are sincerely seeking to know and to do the will of God. The many pre-publication orders I have already received, have strengthen my determination to complete this project by the end of March 2008.

 

The book consists of about 400 pages with a nice four colors, laminated cover.  We are in the process of redesigning the cover,  after receiving many valuable suggestions.

 

Thank You for Your Advanced Orders

 

At this time we wish to offer our readers the opportunity to place an order at the special pre-publication prices listed below.  Your advanced orders will offer me, not only the encouragement needed to speedily complete this very demanding project, but also an approximate idea of how many copies we should print. Thank you for your encouragement and support.  Your order will be processed as soon as the book comes out early in April.

 

Special Pre-publication Offer of Popular Beliefs: Are They Biblical?

 

           1 copy of Popular Beliefs: Are they Biblical? at $30.00 per copy. Mailing expenses are included for the USA.  Add $10.00 for  AIRMAIL postage to any overseas destination.

 

           10 copies of Popular Beliefs: Are they Biblical? at $10.00 per copy, postage paid, instead of the regular price of $30.00. ($100.00 for 10 copies). Mailing expenses are included for the USA.Add $40.00 for AIRMAIL postage to any overseas destination.

 

           30 copies (one case) of Popular Beliefs: Are they Biblical? at $5.00 per copy ($150.00 for 30 copies).  Mailing expenses are included for the USA. Add $80.00 for AIRMAIL postage to any overseas destination.

 

           100 copies of Popular Beliefs: Are they Biblical? at $4.00 per copy, postage paid. ($400.00 for 100 copies). Mailing expenses are included for the USA. Add $160.00 for AIRMAIL postage to any overseas destination.

HOW TO ORDER POPULAR BELIEFS: ARE THEY BIBLICAL?

 

        You can order Popular Beliefs: Are they Biblical? at the pre-publication prices given above, in four different ways:

 

           (1)  ONLINE: By clicking here: http://www.biblicalperspectives.com/cart/catalog/index.php?cPath=26_35

 

           (2)  PHONE:  By calling us at (269) 471-2915 to give us your credit card number and postal address.

 

           (3)  EMAIL:  By emailing your order to <sbacchiocchi@biblicalperspectives.com>.  Be sure to provide your  postal address, credit card number, and expiration date. 

  

           (4) REGULAR MAIL: By mailing a check to  BIBLICAL PERSPECTIVES, 4990 Appian Way, Berrien Springs, Michigan 49103, USA. We guarantee to process your order as soon as the book comes off the press.

 

WILLIAM RICHARDSON’S BOOK SPEAKING IN TONGUES IS  OUT AND READY FOR SHIPPING

 

In the latest newsletters I proposed the possibility of reprinting William Richardson’s book Speaking in Tongues: Is It Still the Gift of the Spirit? The book was originally printed in 1994 by the Review and Herald but it has been out of print for several years.

 

The response surpassed my fondest expectations. I received pledges for orders from different parts of the world, including from some Division offices.  In the light of the overwhelming interest, I hastily delivered the book to my printer who reprinted it in a record time of two weeks. Now we are ready to process all your orders.

 

As a rule I do not publish or reprint books of other authors, because my hands are full with promoting and distributing the 18 books that I have authored.  The only other book of another author that I have published, is More than a Prophet: How We Lost and Found Again the Real Ellen White,  by Prof. Graeme S. Bradford.

 

I decided to publish More than a Prophet because I believe that this book has been long overdue and will do a lot to restore confidence in the validity of the gift of prophecy, manifested in the writings, preaching, and teachings of Ellen White.  The response has been most gratifying. About 20 conferences in the USA and a few oversea,  have donated the book to their workers. If you did not have a chance before to order this timely book before, we still have a small supply left of the second printing. We will be glad to mail you copies immediately.  To place an order call us at (269) 471-2915 or click at this link: http://www.biblicalperspectives.com/cart/catalog/index.php?cPath=26_28

 

William Richardson, Ph. D., the author of Speaking in Tongues, has served with distinction our Adventist church for over 35 years as Professor of NT, Chairman of the Religion Department (my chairman for many years), and finally as the Dean of the School of Art and Sciences. He has written numerous articles and books.

 

Let me explain why I decided to reprint Richardson’s Speaking in Tongues.  After reading a dozen of books and scores of articles in preparation for chapter 8 “Speaking in Tongues” of my book Popular Beliefs: Are They Biblical?, I came to appreciate Richardson’s book for his clarity and objectivity.

 

Most Adventist authors and literature have tried to prove that the gift of speaking in tongues described in Acts 2 and 1 Corinthians 12-14, are identical, namely, the ability of speaking foreign languages.  This position has been used to refute all charismatic tongues-speakers as impostors, because they do not speak foreign languages, but unintelligible, ecstatic utterances.

 

Through a painstaking analysis of Acts 2 and  1 Corinthians 12-14, presented in his doctoral dissertation at Andrews University, Richardson shows that there is a difference between the speaking in tongues in Acts 2 and 1 Corinthians 12-14.  For one thing, the tongues in Acts 2 are known as languages (dialektos) clearly understood by the Jews from different countries present in Jerusalem on the Day of Pentecost. By contrast, the tongues in 1 Corinthians 12-14 are characterized as “sound—phonon” (1 Cor 14:10) that needed to be interpreted. No interpretation was needed for tongue-speakers in Acts 2.

       

Ultimately Richardson shows that a careful study of the restrictions Paul places on tongues-speaking during the worship service, disqualifies much of the Pentecostal speaking in tongues today as an unbiblical, illicit activity. The confusion caused by several people speaking in tongues at the same time without any translation, is an illicit activity clearly condemned by Scripture.

 

Richardson’s concern, however, is to let Scripture speak for itself, rather than twisting Scripture to make the gift of tongues something we want it to be. His research shows that there can be instances when a believer is impressed by the Spirit to pray or praise God with sounds too deep for words. Spiritual realities are experienced in different ways by different people

 

I believe that Richardson’s book Speaking in Tongues is a most timely, witnessing book, at a time when the Pentecostal/charismatic movements are growing 10 times faster than our Adventist church, that is, at the rate of over 20 millions a year, and thus becoming the second largest religious body in the world after the Catholic Church.  Their membership today is already over 550 million and within 10 years it is expected to reach 750 million.

 

Special Introductory Offer of Richardson’s Speaking in Tongues

 

           1 copy of Speaking in Tongues at $25.00 per copy. Mailing expenses are included for the USA.  Add $10.00 for  AIRMAIL postage to any overseas destination.

 

           10 copies of Speaking in Tongues at $7.00 per copy, postage paid, instead of the regular price of $25.00. ($70.00 for 10 copies). Mailing expenses are included for the USA.  Add $40.00 for AIRMAIL postage to any overseas destination.

 

           30 copies (one case) of  Speaking in Tongues at $5.00 per copy, postage paid.  ($150.00 for 30 copies).  Mailing expenses are included for the USA. Add $80.00 for AIRMAIL postage to any overseas destination.

 

You can order William Richardson’s book Speaking in Tongues  at the introductory prices given above, in four different ways:

 

           (1)  ONLINE: By clicking here: http://www.biblicalperspectives.com/cart/catalog/index.php?cPath=26_36

 

           (2)  PHONE:  By calling us at (269) 471-2915 to give us your credit card number and postal address.

 

           (3)  EMAIL:  By emailing your order to <sbacchiocchi@biblicalperspectives.com>.  Be sure to provide your  postal address, credit card number, and expiration date.

   

           (4) REGULAR MAIL: By mailing a check to  BIBLICAL PERSPECTIVES, 4990 Appian Way, Berrien Springs, Michigan 49103, USA. We guarantee to process your order immediately.

 

CRISTINA PICCARDI’S NEW DVD RECORDINGS

 

A brand new recording of Cristina Piccardi’s sacred concert and of our SABBATH SEMINAR with WORDS AND SONGS was made in Loma Linda on February 8, 9, 10. The recording was done with four state-of-the-art high definition cameras that provide an exceptional clear and crispy video images.

 

We felt the need to make a high quality recording to share our new ministry with fellow believers in different parts of the world. We are happy that at this time we can offer a professional recording both of Cristina’s Sacred Concert  and of our SABBATH SEMINAR with WORDS AND SONGS.

 

The SACRED CONCERT consists of 16 sacred familiar songs that cover the major themes of God’s creative and redemptive love. Her marvellous singing will touch your heart and inspire you to devote your life more fully to the Savior. You can see the picture of this new album by clicking at this link: http://www.biblicalperspectives.com/pic.htm

 

The SABBATH SEMINAR consists of 3 DVD disks containing a total of 6 hours of recording, that is, the Cristina singing and my preaching done on Friday evening, Sabbath morning, and Sabbath afternoon.  Cristina sings a few songs before and after each of my lectures. You  can enjoy this informative and inspiring 6 hours seminar in the privacy of your home or church, without having to travel long distances or investing money to fly us in.  You can see the picture of this new album by clicking at this link:http://www.biblicalperspectives.com/sabbathandsong/index.htm

 

Who is Cristina Piccardi?

 

In my view Cristina is by far the best Adventist soprano I have heard in my life. Surprisingly she is a slim, only 118 pounds, 5.6 feet high—not the typical heavy-set soprano. When my wife asked her: “How can you project such a powerful voice when you are so slim?”  She replied: “It is God’s gift.”

 

Cristina was born in Brazil 26 years ago and came to Andrews University two years ago to accompany her husband who is studying at the seminary. She has earned degrees in voice performance both in Brazil and at Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, PA, where she received full scholarship during the two years of her studies, graduating in December of 2005. 

 

She has performed in a leading role with symphonic orchestras in the USA and overseas. In the year 2005 she won the first price at an International Competition for Opera Singers.

         

I officially met Cristina on October 6, 2007 at Andrews University Pioneer Memorial Church. I was spellbound by the three sacred songs  she sung during the communion service led by Pastor Dwight Nelson. When we met after the communion service, we both immediately felt that the Lord was bringing us together in a providential way to proclaim with words and songs our timely Adventist Message. She told me that after singing for five years in a leading role with various symphonic orchestras, she felt the call of God to leave glitzy opera stage, in order to dedicate the gift of her voice to sing sacred music. This means that now we are presenting together with words and songs my powerpoint seminars on the SABBATH, SECOND  ADVENT, and CHRISTIAN LIFE STYLE.

 

You can enjoy a preview of Cristina’s outstanding singing by clicking at this link:  http://www.biblicalperspectives.com/cristina/   She sings the first stanza of THE HOLY CITY.

 

Special Package Offer of Cristina’s Recordings.

 

           At this time we wish to offer the complete package of Cristina’s three albums, together with the newly recorded SABBATH SEMINAR with WORDS AND SONGS for only $80.00, instead of the regular price of $230.00. The package included the following four albums:

 

           1) THE CD ALBUM REJOICE IN THE LORD which consists of 11 sacred songs recorded with Marcelo Caceres, Professor of piano at Andrews University. The regular price of the album is $30.00.

 

           2) THE DVD ALBUM SING UNTO THE LORD which consists of 10 sacred songs recorded at the Andrews University Pioneer Memorial SDA Church.  The regular price of the DVD album is $50.00.

 

           3) THE DVD ALBUM BY HIS GRACE which consists of 16 sacred songs recorded in Loma Linda with four high-definition cameras.  The regular price of the DVD is $50.00.

 

           4) THE DVD ALBUM OF THE SABBATH WITH WORDS AND SONGS which consists of three DVD disks with 6 hours of recordings of Cristina singing and my preaching done on Friday evening, Sabbath morning, and Sabbath afternoon. The regular price is $100.00.

 

           The special offer on the above package of 4 albums is only $80.00, mailing expenses included even overseas, instead of the regular price of $230.00.

 

How to Order Cristina’s Package of Four Albums

 

        You can order the package of the four albums containing Cristina’s Sacred Concerts and the SABBATH SEMINAR in WORDS AND SONGS in four different ways:

 

           (1)  ONLINE: By clicking here: http://www.biblicalperspectives.com/cart/catalog/product_info.php?cPath=26&products_id=122

 

           (2)  PHONE:  By calling us at (269) 471-2915 to give us your credit card number and postal address.

 

           (3)  EMAIL:  By emailing your order to <sbacchiocchi@biblicalperspectives.com>.  Be sure to provide your  postal address, credit card number, and expiration date.

   

           (4) REGULAR MAIL: By mailing a check to  BIBLICAL PERSPECTIVES, 4990 Appian Way, Berrien Springs, Michigan 49103, USA. We guarantee to process your order immediately.

 

 

“THE SAGA OF VICARIUS FILII DEI ON THE PAPAL TIARA”

Samuele Bacchiocchi, Ph. D.,

Retired Professor of Theology,  Andrews University

 

EDITORIAL

 

This newsletter was inspired by the unusual volume of both positive and negative responses I received from readers of my appeal for historical accuracy that I posted in the Endtime Issues Newsletter 194. Several readers took issue with my rejection of the traditional interpretation of the number of the Beast “666.”  Some of them told me that my rejection raises serious questions about my commitment to the traditional Adventist interpretation of the Mark and Number of the Beast. 

 

Some critics attempted to challenge the findings of my research by appealing to two articles on Our Sunday Visitor  which appeared on November 15, 1914, and April 18, 1915.  The latter explicitly states: “The letters inscribed in the Pope’s miter are these: VICARIUS FILII DEI, which is the Latin for the Vicar of the Son of God.”

 

My critics ignore that this admission is faulty on at least two counts. First, there are no inscriptions on the pope’s miter, which is a liturgical headdress worn by even by bishops, cardinals, and abbots. Inscriptions are only found on a couple of papal tiaras, which are used especially for the coronation of the pope.  But the title VICARIUS FILII DEI in not found on these tiaras.

 

Second, the editors of Our Sunday Visitors on two subsequent issues denied their previous admission saying: “As a matter of fact, the tiara of the Pope bears no inscription whatsoever. . . . It is very strange that people can regard themselves as religious and still engage in an apostolate of vituperation and slander” (Our Sunday Visitor, August 3, 1941, p. 7; see also September 16, 1917). This statement is supported by a visual analysis of all the tiaras that have been produced since 1800. The previous ones were confiscated and melted down by previous invaders.

 

What is most significant is the fact that our General Conference sponsored an investigation into the alleged existence of a papal tiara with the inscription VICARIOUS FILII DEI. But the only tiara that was found with such an inscription, was the one designed  by an Adventist artist. That picture of this tiara was used for many years by evangelists and by the publishers of Uriah Smith’s Daniel and the Revelation. When our Adventist church leaders learned that the picture was fraudulent, they protested against its use and had it removed from Uriah Smith’s book Daniel and the Revelation.

 

The story of the Adventist search for the inscribed papal tiara, is most fascinating.  I investigated this question over a period of six months while researching for the DVD lecture on The Mark and Number of the Beast.

 

This research project began when Prof. Jon Paulien, Chairman of the NT Department at Andrews University Theological Seminary, and Prof. Ranko Stefanovich, Professor of NT and author of the widely acclaimed Commentary on Revelation, invited me to investigate the Revelation 13’s prophecy of The Mark and the Number of the Beast.  The plan was for me to share my findings with their three seminary classes on Revelation.

 

      Being a church historian trained at a the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome, both professors were eager for me to investigate the origin and use of the papal title Vicarius Filii Dei—Vicar of the Son of God, both in official documents and on papal tiaras. The aim was to establish if the numerical value of the letters of this title, represent a legitimate interpretation of the number 666 (Rev 13:18).

 

      Approximately 150 seminary students, plus numerous visitors attended my lecture. With the help of powerpoint slides, I shared my preliminary finding. The response surpassed my fondest expectations. Practically every person who attended the lectures, was eager to order the CD album with the powerpoint slides and text. Eventually a professional crew was invited to made a video recording of the lecture, which has been well-received by Adventist leaders, pastors, and lay members in different countries.

 

If you have not had the chance to view this two hours DVD lecture delivered with 195 stunning powerpoint pictures, we will gladly mail you the album.  To order the DVD album on The Mark and Number of the Beast,  simply click here: http://www.biblicalperspectives.com/BeastAD/

 

For the sake of brevity, in this newsletter I am posting only the transcript of 40 slides which relate to the identification of the number 666 with the numerical value of the letters of Vicarious Filii Dei. Interested readers are welcomed to view and read the whole study which consists of 195 slides.

 

Importance of the Identification of the Number and Mark of the Beast

 

Most Evangelists view their lecture on the Mark and Number of the Beast, as the most decisive lecture of their evangelistic crusade. It is the lecture that gives a prophetic reasons for taking a stand for the Sabbath. It is the lecture when most people decide whether or not to join the
Remnant Church that keeps the commandments of God and the testimony of Jesus.

 

Thus, it is not surprising that the study of the prophecy about the mark and number of the beast (Rev 13:18), has played an important role in the prophetic self-understanding of the Adventist Church. It has provided a prophetic understanding of the role of the Sabbath versus Sunday controversy in the final showdown.

 

In view of the important role this prophecy has played in Adventist history, it is instructive to learn the historical origin and development of its interpretation. To accomplish this objective we shall sketch briefly the stages of developments of the Adventist interpretation

.

The Adventist Identification of 666 with Vicarius Filii Dei

 

      The identification of the number 666 of the Beast with the numerical value of the letters of Vicarius Filii Dei was adopted by our Seventh-day Adventist Church relatively late in our history, largely due to the influence of Uriah Smith. As editor or member of the editorial staff of The Review and Herald for almost 50 years, he influenced the beliefs and practices of the Adventist church more than any other leader, with the exception of Ellen White.

 

      Uriah Smith appears to have been the first Adventist leader to mention Vicarius Filii Dei as a possible interpretation of the number 666.  In an editorial entitled “The Two-Horned Beast,” published in The Review and Herald issue of  November 20, 1866, Uriah Smith comments on the views expressed by H. E. Carver.  Smith commends Carver for producing historical testimonies showing how some popes and rulers passed decrees against heretics “to prevent their buying and selling, or holding even the ordinary intercourse of life.”

 

      But, on the question of the number of the beast, Smith takes issue with Carver’s identification of 666 with the word Lateinos, a longstanding popular choice among commentators, because its letters add up to 666. Smith objects to this interpretation on two grounds. First, 666 can be found in the numerical value of the letters of many names.  “This drawing the number from a name, we must regard as rather conjectural than otherwise, seeing that names can be found almost to any extent, making just that number” (p. 4). Second, Lateinos is not the name of a man, as indicated by the prophecy, but “the name of a people or kingdom” (p. 4). In actuality, the text says that “it is a human number” (Rev 13:18), not “the number of a name.” The meaning of this phrase will be discussed shortly.

 

      After rejecting Carver’s identification of Lateinos with 666, because all sorts of names can add up to that number,  Uriah Smith ignores his warning by proposing his own phrase, namely the papal title  Vicarius Filii Dei.  “The most plausible name we have ever seen suggested as containing the number of the beast, is the blasphemous title which the pope applies to himself, and wears in jeweled letters upon his miter or pontifical crown.  That title is this: Vicarius Filii Dei—‘Vicegerent of the Son of God.’ Taking the letters out of this title which the Latin used as numerals, and giving them their numerical value, we have just 666” (p. 4). Note that at this point in time Smith offers this interpretation as a most plausible suggestion. A few years later, as we shall see, the plausible suggestion becomes a certain interpretation.

 

The Sources of Uriah Smith’s Interpretation

 

      To support his interpretation, Uriah Smith quotes an eyewitness account from a source entitled The Reformation, bearing the date of 1832. The source says: “‘Mrs. A.,’ said Miss Emmons, ‘I saw a very curious fact the other day; I have dwelt upon it much, and will mention it. A person, lately, was witnessing a ceremony of the Romish Church. As the pope passed him in procession, splendidly dressed in his pontifical robes, the gentleman’s eye rested on these full, blazing letters in front of his miter: ‘Vicarius Filii Dei,’ the Vicar of the Son of God. His thoughts, with the rapidity of lightning, reverted to Rev. 13:18.’ ‘Will you turn to it?’  Mrs. A. Alice opened the New Testament and read: ‘Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man; and his number is Six hundred threescore and six.’ She paused, and Miss Emmons said, ‘He took out his pencil, and marking the numerical letters or the inscription on his tablet, it stood 666’” (pp. 4-5).

 

      On the basis of this testimony, Smith affirms: “Here we have indeed the number of a man, even the ‘man of sin;’ and it is a little singular, perhaps providential, that he should select a title which shows the blasphemous character of the beast, and then cause it to be inscribed upon his miter, as if to brand himself with the number 666” (p. 5).

 

      This editorial article by Uriah Smith is informative for two reasons. First, it shows that in 1866 when the article was published, there was still uncertainty among Adventists about the meaning of 666. H. E. Carver identified 666 with Lateinos—a longstanding interpretation that goes back to Irenaues in the second century—while Uriah Smith found it more plausible to apply 666 to the pope’s title Vicarius Filii Dei. At this point in time (1866) the latter interpretation was only a plausible suggestion, not a unanimously accepted teaching. It took a few years for Smith to gain general acceptance for this interpretation.

 

      Second, Smith bases his preferred interpretation on an eyewitness account published 34 years earlier. No attempt was made to verify the accuracy of the account or to locate a more trustworthy historical source mentioning the use of Vicarius Filii Dei in Catholic official documents. Furthermore,the credibility of the account is questionable.  First, because as mentioned earlier, there are no inscriptions on the papal miter. 

 

Second, tt is hard to believe that upon seeing the inscription Vicarius Filii Dei upon the pope’s tiara, a person turned “with the rapidity of lightning”  to Revelation 13:18, read the text, and then calculated the numerical value of the letters found in the tiara.  No common person can perform all these functions “with the rapidity of lightning.”

 

The Gradually Acceptance of the Vicarius Filii Dei’s Interpretation

 

Slide 93

 

      In the ensuing years Uriah Smith’s identification of the number 666 with Vicarius Filii Dei gained wide acceptance in the Adventist church.  An indication is the report by G. W. Mitchell about the Ohio Campmeeting, published in the November 11, 1875, issue of the Review.  Mitchell reports that on Saturday evening Brother St. John gave a Bible study “showing that the two-horned beast which was seen coming out of the earth is a symbol of the United States. . . . The number of the beast is found in the Latin words expressing his title, Vicar of the Son of God” (p. 7). The fact that Mitchell reports Brother St. John’s interpretation casually without any questioning suggests that by that time (1875) this interpretation had become widely accepted in the Adventist church.

 

       The gradual shift from a plausible to a certain identification of  Vicarius Filii Dei with the number 666 can be seen in Uriah Smith’s writings. We noted earlier that in his Review article published in 1866, Uriah Smith mentions  Vicarius Filii Dei as a plausible interpretation of the number 666.  Eighteen years later, in his book The United States in the Light of Prophecy (published in 1884), Uriah Smith affirms unequivocally that “The number over which the saints are also to get the victory, is the number of the papal beast, called also the number of his name, and the number of a man, and said to be six hundred three scores and six.  The pope wears upon his pontifical crown in jeweled letters, this title, Vicarius Filii Dei, vicegerent of the Son of God. The most plausible supposition we have seen on this point is that here we find the number in question.  It is the number of the beast, the papacy; it is the number of a man, for he adopts it as his distinctive title; it is the number of a man, for he who bears it is the ‘man of sin’” (4th edition, 1884, p. 224).

 

      In his later books Smith repeats this view almost verbatim. For example, in The Marvel of the Nations (published in 1886), he wrote: “The number over which the saints are also to get the victory, is the number of the papal beast, called also the number of his name, and the number of a man, and said to be six hundred, three score and six (Rev 13:18). Where is the number to be found? The pope wears upon his pontifical crown, in jeweled letters, this title: Vicarius Filii Dei vicegerent of the Son of God. The numerical value of which title is just six hundred and sixty-six” (p. 266).  

Slide 94

 

      The sources cited by Uriah Smith to support his identification of the number 666 with the pope’s title Vicarius Filii Dei are the accounts of two eyewitnesses who claimed to have seen the inscription on the pope’s tiara while in Rome.  Elder D. E. Scoles of Washburn, Missouri, personally met these two eyewitnesses and wrote their story.  Uriah Smith quotes this story in his book Thought on Daniel and Revelation.

 

      “I have met two men who declare that they have seen this specific crown; and their testimony is so perfectly in agreement that I am convinced that what they saw is true. The first man was M. De Latti, a Sabbath-keeper who had previously been a Catholic priest, and had spent four years in Rome. He visited me when I was pastor in St. Paul, Minnesota, several years ago. I showed him my tract, ‘The Seal of God and the Mark of the Beast.’ He at once told me that the inscription was not correctly placed in my illustration. He stated that he had often seen it in the museum at the Vatican, and gave a detailed and accurate description of the whole crown. When my tract was published, I was ignorant of the arrangement of the words of the Latin inscriptions, hence, in the illustration of the crown, placed them in one line. Brother De Latti at once pointed out the mistake, and said the first word of the sentence was on the first crown of the triple arrangement, the second word on the second part of the crown, while the word Dei was on the lower division of the triple crown. He also explained that the first two words were in dark-colored jewels, while the Dei was composed entirely of diamonds.

 

      “During a tent-meeting which I held in Webb City, Mo., I presented the subject, ‘The Seal of God and the Mark of the Beast.’ I used charts to illustrate it, one being a reproduction of the crown as Brother De Latti had described it. A Presbyterian minister was present, Rev. B. Hoffman, and when I described the crown, he spoke out publicly and made a statement to the congregation, saying that while in Rome studying for the priesthood, he had seen this very crown, and noted its inscription, and that the word Dei was composed of one hundred diamonds. I met him and learned his name, and visited him at his home, and was convinced from his description that this was the identical crown that Brother De Latti had seen, but which has been denied by many. I then asked him for a written statement, and he gave me the following:—

 

      ‘To Whom It May Concern:

 

      ‘This is to certify that I was born in Bavaria in 1828, was educated in Munich, and was reared a Roman Catholic. In 1844 and 1845 I was a student for the priesthood in the Jesuit College in Rome. During the Easter service of 1845, Pope Gregory XVI wore a triple crown upon which was the inscription, in jewels, Vicarius Filii Dei.  We were told that there were one hundred diamonds in the word Dei; the other words were of some other kind of precious stones of a darker color. There was one word upon each crown, and not all on the same line. I was present at the service, and saw the crown distinctly, and noted it carefully.

 

       ‘In 1850 I was converted to God and to Protestantism. Two years later I entered the Evangelical Church ministry, but later in life I united with the Presbyterian Church, of which I am now a retired pastor, having been in the ministry for fifty years.  I have made the above statement at the request of Elder D. E. Scoles, as he states that some deny that the pope ever wore this tiara. But I know that he did, for I saw it upon his head.

 

       ‘Sincerely yours in Christian service,

 

      (Signed) “‘B. HOFFMAN.

 

       ‘Webb City, Mo., Oct. 29, 1906’” (Thoughts on Daniel and Revelation, pp. 624-625).

 

An Evaluation of Uriah Smith’s Sources

     

The credibility of the two testimonies used by Uriah Smith, is undermined by several inaccuracies.  For example, Mr. De Latti claims to have seen the inscribed tiara several times “in the museum at the Vatican.” The fact is that papal tiaras are displayed not at the “Musei Vaticani—Vatican Museum,” but in the Treasury of St. Peter Basilicas, which is located inside the basilica.. In the Treasury are displayed ancient and recent ecclesiastical art, vestments, tiaras, and liturgical vessels.

 

      On several occasions I have visited the Treasury of St. Peter when guiding tourists through St. Peter.  I have searched in vain for tiaras with inscriptions.  The two inscribed tiaras, namely, the 1871 Belgian tiara donated to Pius IX and the 1903 Golden tiara given by the people of Bologna to Leo XIII, are not displayed in the Treasury. But these two inscribed tiaras do not contain the inscription Vicarius Filii Dei.

 

The Informative Report Filed by Pastor Chas T. Everson

 

Slide 95

 

      My experience is confirmed by a most informative report filed by Chas T. Everson, an Adventist missionary serving in Italy.  He filed regular reports for The Advent Review and Sabbath Herald about significant church events happening in Italy. For on the July 27, 1905, issue of the Advent Review, Everson wrote a fascinating article entitled “The Inscription on the Pope’s Tiara.”  In response to inquiries from various countries about the inscription Vicarius Filii Dei, Everson made “a special effort to gain the desired information” by conducting a thorough investigation that providentially led him into the very dressing room of the pope, where some tiaras are kept.

 

      Everson wrote: “I have seen the tiara upon the head of the pope on various occasions, when great functions were held in St. Peter’s Cathedral, such as the Jubilee of Pope Leo XIII, the coronation of the present pope, etc. And on occasion of the fiftieth anniversary of the Declaration of the Immaculate Conception.  I had a position in the church very near where the pope passed, and with the aid of an opera-glass saw the tiara quite plainly.  Also on a later occasion, when two ‘saints’ were canonized, I had a reserved seat in front of the church, and then I saw the tiara exceptionally well. But in order to leave no possible room for doubt in this matter, I sought to gain the opportunity of seeing the tiara privately and of examining in minutely.”

 

      Everson continues recounting the unique opportunity he had one day, through the aid of a friend well acquainted with Vatican officials, to visit the very room where the pope dresses himself for the great occasions. “Here we were given an opportunity of seeing the tiara close at hand.  We also saw two other tiaras that had been presented to the pope, one from France and the other from Bologna, as well as the miter of the pope. . . .

 

      “Now, as to the tiara, which is the triple crown worn solely by the pope, I shall say a few words. The present tiara has been in use since 1836, and was worn by Pius IX, Leo XIII, and Pius X.  This is the official tiara with which popes are crowned, and which they wear on great occasions. There is no tiara extant that was worn before 1836; for when Napoleon came to Rome on his famous pillaging tour, he destroyed all the tiaras existing, in order to utilize the jewels and the precious metals contained in them . . .” (Advent Review and Sabbath Herald, July 27, 1905, p. 10).

 

No Tiara Found with the Inscription Vicarius Filii Dei

 

Slide 96

 

      In spite of his unique opportunity to view several tiaras at close range, Everson was disappointed in not finding the inscription Vicarius Filii Dei on any of them. He wrote: “But while we were pleased to see this brilliant crown, yet we were disappointed in not finding the object of our search; for the inscription Vicarius Filii Dei was nowhere to be found inscribed upon the tiara, as the accompanying photographs show very plainly.” Everson continues describing the gold tiara presented to Leo XIII in 1903. This tiara, as shown earlier, contains three inscriptions, but none of them reading Vicarius Filii Dei . He concludes his report, saying: “to be perfectly correct in our statements, we cannot say that there is an inscription of this nature on the tiara at present” (Advent Review and Sabbath Herald, July 27, 1905, p. 10).

 

Slide 97

 

Everson does not discount the possibility that the inscription Vicarius Filii Dei could be found in the older tiaras dismantled by Napoleon and even by some popes forced to raise money to pay tributes to occupying rulers. In fact, he writes:  “I shall not leave the question at this point, but shall endeavor to prove in another article that also upon the tiara was found the inscription Vicarius Filii Dei at one time” (p. 11).

 

      I spent considerable time looking for Everson’s follow-up article in the volumes of the Advent Review running from 1905 to 1920, but I was not able to locate such an article.  It would be interesting to read what information Everson was able to gather on the inscription of Vicarius Filii Dei on pre-Napoleonic tiaras.  The limited resources at Andrews University make it impossible for me to conduct this investigation locally. When I next have an opportunity to visit Rome, I will make it a priority to look for sources on the history of the papal tiaras that may be available in some Vatican libraries. I have reasons to believe that this inscription may be found on some papal tiaras, as we have found it in numerous official documents.

 

Problems with Uriah Smith’s Sources

 

Slide 98

 

      Everson’s eyewitness account of his close range inspection of the papal tiaras, even of those found in the dressing room of the pope, discredits the two eyewitness stories used by Uriah Smith in several of his publications, including Daniel and the Revelation.  Mr. De Latti could not have seen a tiara with the inscription Vicarius Filii Dei in the Vatican Museum in Rome for two reasons. First, the tiaras are displayed in the Treasury of St. Peter basilica, not in the Vatican museum. Second, the investigations of all the existing tiaras done by men like Chas Everson and later by LeRoy Froom have failed to find a single tiara with the inscription under consideration.

 

      The same conclusion holds true for the testimony of Rev. B. Hoffman, who claims to have seen Pope Gregory XVI wearing a triple crown tiara with the inscription Vicarius Filii Dei during the Easter service of 1845. This testimony is discredited by the fact, pointed out by Catholic critics, that the pope NEVER wears the tiara for the celebration of special Masses. Its use is strictly reserved for historical events like the coronation service.

 

      Undoubtedly Uriah Smith accepted at face value the testimonies he had received because he was eager to substantiate the prevailing Adventist interpretation of the number of the Beast. The lesson to be learned from Smith’s mistake is that our Adventist church cannot afford to base our prophetic interpretations on undocumented reports. Our commitment to teach the truth demands that we must be truthful to the witness of Scripture and history.

 

Uriah Smith’s Interpretation Defended by J. N. Andrews

 

Slide 99

 

      Uriah Smith’s interpretation of the Number 666 became widely accepted in the Adventist church largely because it was ably defended by J. N. Andrews, who was highly respected as the leading scholar of the Adventist church. He agreed with Uriah Smith in the identification of the Mark of the Beast with the enforcement of Sunday observance and of the Number of the Beast with Vicarius Filii Dei.

 

Slide 100

     

       John N. Andrews firmly believed that the number 666 is found in the pope’s title Vicarius Filii Dei, which is inscribed on the pope’s miter. In his book The Three Messages of Revelation 14:6-12, Andrews wrote: “There is no other papal institution [like Sunday observance] that directly sets aside one of the ten commandments, that the whole Protestant world observes. This mark is very conspicuous in the forehead or hand, and signifies not a literal mark, but a public profession, or act, that all may see or know.

 

      “The number of the name of the beast is also to be enforced as a test of submission to him. This number, which is said to be that of a man, is seen, without doubt, in the title of ‘Vicar of the Son of God’ which the pope has caused to be inscribed upon his miter. It is written in Latin, and the numeral letters employed make the sum of 666. The design of this test is to cause men to acknowledge the authority of the papacy” (pp. 108-109).

 

      Uriah Smith and John N. Andrews played a major role in leading the whole Adventist church to accept their new interpretation of the number of the Beast as being the papal title Vicarius Filii Dei, allegedly inscribed in the papal tiara. Surprisingly, the two men never attempted to investigate the historical use of this title and its alleged inscription on the papal tiara.

 

      Uriah Smith based his interpretation largely on stories he heard about a few people who saw the inscription on the tiara while in Rome watching the pope wearing the tiara in some religious ceremonies. The credibility of such stories is negated by the fact that popes do not wear the tiara for religious ceremonies. The use of the triple tiara is strictly reserved for major historical events like the  coronation of a new pope. At the coronation ceremony, the triple tiara used to be placed on the head of the new pope to signify the reception of  special pastoral, ecclesiastical, and temporal power. The last three popes have chosen to decline the coronation ceremony with the wearing of the tiara, replacing it with an inaugural Mass. The reason for this decision is the recognition that the coronation with the tiara is a sad reminder of the days when popes were crowned as temporal rulers.

 

Wide Acceptance of Adventist Numeric Interpretation

 

Slide 101

 

      The interpretation of the number 666 as representing the numerical value of the letters found in the pope’s title Vicarius Filii Dei,  became the standard Adventist interpretation for several decades. In fact, even today there are many Adventists who zealously defend this traditional interpretation.  This is evidenced by the critical messages received from readers of my comments posted in the Endtime Issues Newsletter No. 194. 

 

A large percentage of the over 100,000 online studies found in GOOGLE dealing with the number and mark of the beast, are authored by Adventists who use all their ingenuity and resources to defend the traditional interpretation.  These fellow believers feel betrayed by Adventist leaders and scholars who today are questioning the traditional numeric interpretation, proposing instead a symbolic interpretation of the number 666.

 

The Design of a Fraudulent Tiara

 

Picture 102

 

      The wide acceptance of the numeric interpretation of Vicarius Filii Dei as the fulfillment of the number (666) of the beast, led some zealous Adventists to design fraudulent tiaras with the famous inscription. The story of how this happened is reported LeRoy Froom, a respected Adventist church historian and author of several books, including the classic four-volume set on The Prophetic Faith of Our Fathers. He offers a concise but stern account of how the fraudulent Adventist pictures of the papal tiaras were produced.

 

      In a short article entitled “Dubious Pictures of the Tiaras,” published in The Ministry, Froom wrote: “Years ago one of our leading evangelists, when in Rome, secured some impressive pictures of one of the tiaras. But the photographs were without any wording of any sort on any of the three crowns, front or back. Later, an artist, in attempting to re-illustrate one of the standard books on the prophecies, took this genuine photograph of a plain tiara and lettered upon it the three words Vicarius, Filii and Dei—one on each of the three crowns—on the premise that such was the name the pope bore, and if were not actually on the tiara, it might well be by way of illustration. One of our leading publishing houses, and the General Conference, to whom the altered photograph was submitted, emphatically rejected it as misleading and deceptive, and refused to allow its use.  (All honor to them!)

 

      “Regrettably, some of our evangelists who do not have all the facts, and to whom the appeal of the moment has sometimes outweighed the ethics of the case, and who perhaps have not thought through the fraudulent character of such plausible but specious evidence, have occasionally continued to use this or similar fabrication” (The Ministry, November 1948, p. 35).

 

Slide 103

 

      “In the name of truth and honesty this journal protests any such use by any member of the Ministerial Association of Seventh-day Adventist denomination (our worker body), of which The Ministry is the official organ. Truth does not need fabrication to aid or suppress it.  Its very nature precludes any manipulation or duplicity.  We cannot afford to be party to any fraud. The reflex action upon our souls should be a sufficient deterrent.  We must never use a quotation or a picture merely because it sounds or looks impressive. We must honor the truth and meticulously observe the principle of honesty in the handling of evidence under all circumstances” (The Ministry, November 1948, p. 35).

 

Slide 104

 

       Froom’s stern warnings may have discouraged the use of fraudulent tiaras in evangelistic meetings, but not the identification of the number 666 with the papal title Vicarius Filii Dei. This identification remained largely unchallenged until  the 1930s, when Francis D. Nichol wrote an article for Signs in which he mentions a person in Rome who saw that title on the Pope’s tiara. Stories of people who sighted the inscription Vicarius Filii Dei on the papal tiara while in Rome circulated freely in Adventist circles at that time. The “eyewitness stories” cited by Uriah Smith in his publications may have contributed to the fascination with these stories.

 

The Challenge of a Jesuit Editor

 

Slide 105

 

      No sooner was the article published than the editor of a Jesuit paper challenged Nichol, by letter and by an editorial, either to prove or desist from spreading such a preposterous claim.  Nichol wrote to Adventist scholars around the world to provide any information they could find on this subject.

 

Slide 106

 

Š     Eventually a special study group was set up chaired by Elder Howell, hoping that some more reliable information might be found on the use of the pope’s title Vicarius Filii Dei.  LeRoy Edwin Froom was sent on a special research assignment to the Vatican to seek information on the pope’s title Vicarius Filii Dei, but he found nothing of significance.

 

      In the meantime, our pastors and evangelists were advised to discontinue preaching and publishing on the pope’s titleVicarius Filii Dei until more credible evidence could be found. These directives troubled some of our church leaders who felt humiliated by the Catholic challenge to prove what they thought was an established fact. After all, for many years Adventist pastors and leading evangelists had identified the Beast of Revelation 13 with the papacy, especially by appealing to the number 666 of the Beast, which they thought was providentially found in the very pope’s title Vicarius Filii Dei inscribed upon its tiara.

 

The Captivating Story of Roberto Correia

 

Slide 107

 

      To get a sense of how deeply concerned some Adventists became over the inability of our church leaders to document the use of Vicarius Filii Dei as an official pope’s title, we mention the captivating story of Robert Correia, a Brazilian theology student who became passionate in his determination to search for the use of this papal title. Correia has written his incredible story of how he literally traveled across America in his search for documents to authenticate the use of Vicarius Filii Dei.   The story will keep you spellbound. You can find it on the Web at http://www.aloha.net/~mikesch/vicarius-filii-dei-documentation.htm

 

      Correia wrote: “The story begins at Loma Linda [California] back in 1941 where Elder J. L. Shaw, former General Conference Treasurer, was a patient, and I, a student at La Sierra College, was his night nurse. One night about midnight Elder Shaw couldn’t sleep. Something seemed to disturb him. When asked why he was so restless he replied: ‘I’m very worried. For many years we have been preaching that the Pope has the title Vicarius Filii Dei which adds up to 666 and now we have been challenged officially by the Catholic church to prove this allegation by producing not some Protestant testimony; but reliable Catholic sources.

 

      “Then Elder Shaw told how it all started with Elder [Francis D.] Nichol who had written an article in the Signs  which stated someone in Rome saw the title Vicarius Filii Dei on the Pope’s tiara. No sooner was this published, than Elder Nichol was challenged by an editor of a Jesuit paper (by letter and by editorial) who wrote that Adventists for years had maintained the Pope had this undocumented title and now the Catholic church demanded that we either prove this or desist from preaching such preposterous assumptions. Elder Nichol, who was known as a great defender of the faith, did not take this challenge lightly. He immediately wrote to our scholars around the world to share with him any information they might have on this subject. Eventually it was put in the hands of a special G. C. committee. So far nothing had resulted, and our church for some years has discontinued to preach and publish this, hoping somehow, someday, we would have more reliable evidence to prove the Pope had this title” (http://www.aloha.net/~mikesch/vicarius-filii-dei-documentation.htm).

 

Slide 114

 

      The finding of the papal title Vicarius Filii Dei on a few documents—especially in two issues of Our Sunday Visitor (November 15, 1914, and April 18, 1915)—gave a new impetus to our evangelists to boldly proclaim the traditional interpretation of the Mark and Number of the Beast.

 

What many Adventists ignore is that the editors of Our Sunday Visitor recanted their admission that Vicarius Filii Dei is the title of the Pope inscribed on his miter. The first recantation occured in the September 16, 1917 issue of Our Sunday Visitor and the second on August 3, 1941 of the same magazine. The latter states: ”The tiara of the Pope bears no inscription whatsoever. . . . It is very strange that people can regard themselves as religious and still engage in an apostolate of vituperation and slander”

 

      The recent popularity of Revelation Seminars conducted in many parts of the world even by lay Adventist members has contributed significantly to popularize the traditional identification of the 666 with the pope’s titleVicarius Filii Dei.  This explains why many Adventists reacted negatively to the symbolic interpretation of the number of the Beast presented in the Sabbath School Lesson of June 1-7, 2002. We shall return to this shortly.

 

Striving for Greater Accuracy

 

Slide 115

 

      For the sake of accuracy, it must be said that our evangelists are striving for greater accuracy in the proclamation of the endtime prophetic message. Some of them contacted me before their Net-crusades. They wanted to verify if, when, and where the pope’s title Vicarius Filii Dei has been used.

 

      Two factors appear to have led our evangelists to be more cautious in preaching on the Mark and Number of the Beast. First, there is the criticism expressed  by influential Catholic and Protestant leaders who have denounced our interpretation as a malicious attempt to defame the Pope.

 

Second, there is also the criticism coming from Adventist scholars who find the traditional Adventist interpretation lacking both exegetical and historical support. They are proposing a symbolic interpretation of the number 666, based on the meaning of the number 6 in Scripture and in Babylonian religion. This subject is examined at considerable length in the DVD lecture. For the sake of brevity this section of the study is left out. The study looks at the symbolic interpretation of the number of the Beast and its relationship to the Mark and Number of the Beast.

 

Two Main Conclusions

 

Slide 116

 

      Two main conclusions emerge from our study of the numeric interpretation of the number 666 of the beast. First, we noted that contrary to some Catholic sources who deny the use of Vicarius Filii Dei  as a papal title, we have found this title to have been used in official Catholic documents to support the ecclesiastical authority and temporal sovereignty of the pope. Thus the charge that Adventists fabricated the title to support their prophetic interpretation of 666, is unfair and untrue. This important part of the study has been left out in this newsletter for the sake of brevity. You can view it and read it in full in the DVD album.

 

      The second conclusion is that the issue is not the legitimacy of Vicarius Filii Dei, but whether such a title or any other name can be legitimately supported by an accurate reading of Revelation 13:17-18.  In the second part of our study we will see that the meaning of 666 is to be found not in the name or titles of influential people, but in its symbolic meaning of rebellion against God manifested in false worship. We will see that the true meaning of 666 is to be found not in external markings or on a pope’s title, but in the allegiance to false worship promoted by satanic agencies represented by the dragon, the sea-beast, and the land beast.

 

The Symbolic Interpretation of the Number of the Beast “666”

 

Slide 117

 

      In the second part of our study we want to discuss the symbolic interpretation of the cryptic number of the Beast “666.”  No verse in Revelation has received more attention than this one on the number of the beast.  Although the verse opens with the declaration “This calls for wisdom,” the history of interpretation shows that WISDOM OFTEN HAS BEEN LACKING in defining the meaning of the number 666.

 

      Our study of the symbolic interpretation of the number of the Beast is divided in three parts:

 

           1) The symbolic interpretation proposed by the Sabbath School Lesson of June 1-7, 2002

 

           2) The symbolic interpretation presented in recent Adventist studies.

 

           3) My personal reasons for supporting the symbolic interpretation of the number 666.

 

For the sake of brevity, only the first part is included in this newsletter.

 

The Symbolic Interpretation Proposed by the Sabbath School Lesson

     

Slide 118

 

      The Seventh-day Adventist Church at large was informed about the new symbolic interpretation of the Number 666 of the Beast, in the Sabbath School Lesson of June 1-7, 2002. The title of the Sabbath School Quarterly is The Cosmic Conflict Between Christ and Satan. It is a study of the book of Revelation. The lesson for June 6, 2002, dealt specifically with The Mark and Number of the Beast (Rev 13:16-18; 14:1).  The comments on this topic consist of only a few paragraphs, but they offer a concise and compelling presentation of the new understanding of this subject.

 

Slide 119

 

      The principal author of the Sabbath School Quarterly is  Angel Rodriguez, Ph. D.,  who has been serving for several years as the Director of the Biblical Research Institute of the General Conference. Dr. Rodriguez is well-acquainted with the recent Adventist studies on Revelation, having directed for several years the special study committee on Daniel and Revelation. The studies have been published in a series of seven volumes.

 

Slide 120

 

      Regarding the Mark of the Beast, the Sabbath School Lesson explains that the Mark of the Beast consists in the submission to its authority, manifested in observing Sunday, “the distinctive sign/mark of loyalty to the name of the beast and to what the beast stands for.”

 

Slide 121

 

      Dr. Rodriguez writes:  “The Mark of the Beast. This mark—equated with the name of the beast—identifies those loyal to the beast. Names in the Bible often designate the character of the individual. Those who receive the mark display the same spirit of rebellion characteristic of the beast, a spirit that reveals itself in their attitude toward the law of God (Dan. 7:25). In contrast, those who receive the seal of God keep the commandments, thus showing their loyalty to God (Rev. 12:17; 14:12).”

 

Slide 122

 

      Dr. Rodriguez continues: “The beast is opposed to God’s law and even modified it by changing Sabbath observance to Sunday. It was in that act that the authority of the beast manifested itself. Those who submit to its authority will show it by observing Sunday, the distinctive sign/mark of loyalty to the name of the beast and to what the beast stands for” (Thursday, June 6, 2002). 

 

Slide 123

 

      Dr. Rodriguez respects the traditional Adventist interpretation by identifying the Mark of the Beast with Sunday observance introduced by papal power. There is no question in my mind that the Bishop of Rome was primarily responsible for the change from Sabbath to Sunday and that this change has fostered the false worship of God.

 

In my dissertation From Sabbath to Sunday I presents some of the theological, social, and liturgical methods used by the Bishop of Rome to lead Christians away from Sabbathkeeping into Sundaykeeping. This historical change has affected not only the name and number of the day of worship, but also the form of worship.  It was a change from  a Holy Day into a Holiday—a day usually spent seeking for pleasure and profit.

 

Is the Final Conflict Between Two Days: Sabbath Versus Sunday?

 

      But, there is a problem when we reduce the final conflict over worship to simply a conflict between two different days: Sabbath versus Sunday. There is more to worship than observing the right day. One can observe the right day, but for the wrong reason. Moreover even some Sabbathkeepers sometimes reduce their Sabbathkeeping to one hour of church attendance followed by secular activities.

 

      The controversy between Sabbath and Sunday, must be seen in the larger context of the final conflict between allegiance to God, reflected in the observance of His commandments, and allegiance to Satan, reflected in adherence to the false worship promoted by the Beast. In his book What the Bible Says About the End Time, Prof. Jon Paulien has an insightful chapter entitled “The Issue in the Final Crisis.”  Because of its relevance, the chapter is attached as an appendix at the end of the DVD album.

 

      Dr. Paulien notes that in Revelation 13 and 14 the focus of the conflict between the dragon and the remnant centers over worship—a word that appears 8 times in those two chapters. The Sabbath is part of the final conflict over worship, because “when Revelation finally gets around to calling on people to worship the true God, it does so in the context of the fourth commandment, the Sabbath command. In a special sense, therefore, the author of Revelation understood the Sabbath to be THE crucial issue in the final crisis” (p. 126). 

 

      In the endtime conflict the Sabbath becomes the ideal test of obedience to God, because it costs not only our time, but sometimes it can cost even our job, family members, and life itself. By being willing to pay a price to honor the Savior on the Sabbath, the remnant will show to the universe that God’s people serve Him in a concrete and tangible way. 

 

      The Sabbath stands for allegiance to God, manifested in giving priority to God during the 24 hours of Sabbath and by reflex every day of the week. Sunday stands for a counterfeit of God’s moral law, manifested in a brief church attendance, followed by the search for pleasure and/or profit.  Stated differently, the controversy between the Seal of God and the Mark of the Beast, is a conflict between a God-centered form of worship, versus a Self-centered form of worship.

 

Symbolic Interpretation of the Number of the Beast “666”

 

Slide 124

 

      Regarding the Number of the Beast, the Sabbath School Lesson proposes a symbolic interpretation of the number 666.

 

Slide 125

 

      Regarding the Number of the Beast, Dr. Rodriguez writes: “The Number of the Beast. The mark, the name, and the number of the beast are closely related (Rev. 13:17). Many suggestions have been made to explain the meaning of 666. Here we must be very careful. The Bible does not say that the number is the added numerical value of the letters of a name.”

 

Slide 126

 

      “Some see in the meaning of 666 a symbol of humanity separated from God. Humans were created on the sixth day, and the number can stand as a symbol for humanity without divine rest (the seventh day).”

 

Slide 127

 

      “Humans have claimed ultimate independence from God (the cause of their fall), and even now they do not want to find rest in Christ.”

 

      “Over the years, numerous Bible students have come up with various explanations for the 666. Some found significance in the fact that if you added up the number of letters in the name of a former president of the United States, Ronald Wilson Reagan, it came to 666; others saw meaning in that, years ago, all the buses in Jerusalem had 666 on their license plates. This is futile speculation that adds nothing toward understanding truth. The important point is that God’s Word has given us enough information to know what the key issues are and who the players will be in the last days, even if we do not know all the details for now, such as the precise meaning of 666” (Thursday, June 6, 2002).

 

Slide 128

 

      Dr. Rodriguez concludes, saying: “At the present time, the symbolism of intensified rebellion, six used three times, and total independence from God seem to be the best option. Time will reveal the full meaning of the symbol” (Thursday, June 6, 2002).

 

Three Reasons for Rejection the Traditional Vicarius Filii Dei Interpretation

 

Slide 129

 

      Dr. Rodriguez continues giving three reasons for rejecting the traditional Vicarius Filii Dei interpretation. He writes: “Vicarius Filii Dei (Vicar of the Son of God). Since the Reformation, this papal title has been used to calculate the number 666. But there are several questions that should make us cautious. First, it is not clear that this title is an official one.”

 

      This is a valid observation. Our study has shown that title Vicarius Filii Dei was used sine the eighth century in important documents to boost the temporal power of the papacy, but it has not been not the most common title. The most common official papal title has been Vicarius Christi—Vicar of Christ.

 

Slide 130

 

      The second reason Dr. Rodriguez gives is that the phrase “it is a human number” (v. 18), suggests that the number represents “humans separated from God”

 

      Rodriguez writes: “Second, there is no clear indication in Revelation 13 that the number is based on the numerical value of the letters of a name. The phrase ‘it is the number of a man’ (vs. 18, NIV) could be translated ‘it is the number of [humanity]’; that is, of humans separated from God.”  In other words, the meaning of the cryptic number must be found, not in the numerical value of a name, but in the human significance of 666, that is, the human refusal to proceed to seven, to give glory to God and find rest in Him. This is a valid point that will be expanded shortly.

 

Slide 131

 

      The third reason given by Dr. Rodriguez for rejecting the Vicarius Filii Dei interpretation is that the text does not specify in which language is the numerical value of letters to be counted. He writes: “Third, those who insist in counting the numerical value of letters confront the problem of deciding which language will be used. Because the text does not identify any language, the selection of a particular one will be somewhat arbitrary. At the present time, the symbolism of intensified rebellion, six used three times, and total independence from God seem to be the best option. Time will reveal the full meaning of the symbol” (Friday, June 7, 2002).

 

      Rodriguez rightly points out that “the text does not identify any language.” This is a decisive observation. It is absurd to assume that the original recipients of Revelation could identify the number 666 with the pope’s title Vicarius Filii Dei. Why? For two reasons. First, this title was unknown in John’s day as it was coined eight centuries later in the false Donation of Constantine. (This point is discussed at length in the DVD lecture).

 

Second, the Latin language also was largely unknown to John and his Greek-speaking readers.  His call for wisdom to understand the number 666 would have been senseless, if the information needed to understand the number was still eight centuries in the future.                                               

Slide 132

 

      Our Adventist church has shown courage in rejecting the traditional numeric interpretation of the number 666, proposing instead a symbolic interpretation based on several possible meanings of the number 6.  Shortly we will take a closer look at the symbolic interpretation.

 

      The new challenge our church faces today is to examine the implications of the symbolic interpretation by taking a fresh look at the unity that exists among the mark, the name, and the number of the Beast. Since the three are essentially the same, can we still differentiate between the mark and the number  of the Beast?  Does the symbolic understanding of the number 666, demands a broader interpretation of the mark of the Beast? 

 

These are the questions that I address in the last part of the study found in the DVD lecture. Special mention is made of the contribution of recent Adventist studies to the understanding of the mark and the number of the beast.

 

Information About the DVD Lecture

 

The DVD lecture on The Mark and Number of the Beast  was professionally recorded at Andrews University Towers Auditorium. The lecture lasted two hours and twenty minutes. The marathon session did not seem to bother the audience that listened so attentively to inspire me with unprecedented enthusiasm. The lecture was delivered with the help of 195 powerpoint slides.

 

This has been a very expensive (about $5000.00) and time consuming project. For about five months I have worked an average of 15 hours a day on this project, getting up faithfully at 5:00 a. m. every morning. What took a lot of time has been, not only the investigation into the historical interpretations of the mark and number of the beast, but also the search for pictures of the items discussed: documents, inscribed tiaras, books, popes, Reformers, Adventist pioneers, and recent scholars who have examined this subject. I wanted to make this powerpoint presentation as visual as possible, because “seeing is believing.”

 

      At the end of the second DVD disk, there is a separate powerpoint file with all the 195 slides and accompanying script. This should prove to be a valuable resource for evangelists, pastors, and anyone engaged in sharing the prophetic message of Revelation. They can use some of the stunning pictures for their own presentation.  This newsletter offers the transcript of only 40  of the slides used for the powerpoint lecture.  They represent one fifth of the 195 slides.

 

The Content of the DVD Lecture

 

      In many way my study expands the symbolic interpretation proposed by the Sabbath School Quarterly of April, May, June 2002, devoted to the book of Revelation.  The Lesson of June 1-7 dealt specifically with The Mark and Number of the Beast. Its principal author, Dr. Angel Rodriguez, offers compelling reasons for abandoning the traditional numeric interpretation of the pope’s title Vicarius Filii Dei, and for adopting instead the symbolic interpretation of the number 666. My lecture offers valuable historical and biblical insights into the meaning of 666.

     

      With the help of beautiful slides, the study examines the various past and present interpretations of the mark and number of the Beast. The study exposes the flaws of the sensational interpretations of those who find the mark and number of the beast in such latest electronic developments as laser scanning, universal bar code, and biochips. Such interpretations are the fruit of fertile imaginations, rather than of diligent analysis of the text in its proper context.

 

        The study shows that the Mark and Number of the Beast are essentially the same. They both represent the evil nature and character of the endtime Antichrist determined to enforce the false worship upon mankind. Revelation 13:17 clearly equates the mark with the name and number of the beast. This means that the three are essentially the same. They all represent the evil nature of the beast manifested in the enforcement of false worship.

 

        The battle in the final crisis, is not about external markings of people with barcodes, biochips, or pope’s titles, but rather about the internal control of the mind of every human being. It is a battle over who will people worship: the true God or Satan.

 

      Perhaps the major contribution of this study is to help believers appreciate more fully, not only the centrality of this prophecy in the literary structure book of Revelation, but also in the final conflict over worship. This prophecy of the Mark and Number of the Beast describes with dramatic imageries the final diabolical attempt to enforce false worship through the unholy trinity represented by a dragon, sea-beast, and land-beast.

     

      This battle is already in progress, affecting many people and churches. This visual presentation will encourage Adventists to be faithful to God and to resist the deception of the unholy trinity (dragon, sea-beast, and land-beast) determined to lead people away from the true worship of God into idolatrous forms of worship

 

I have taken this assignment seriously because I believe that this research can benefit thousand of pastors, teachers, evangelists, and probing Adventists who are seeking for a more satisfactory interpretation of The Mark and the Number of the Beast.

 

How to Order the DVD Album on The Mark and Number of the Beast

 

The special price of the DVD album on The Mark and Number of the Beast is only $50.00, instead of the regular $100.00 price.  The airmailing expenses are included for any overseas destinations. You can order the DVD album in four different ways:

 

           (1)  ONLINE: By clicking here: http://www.biblicalperspectives.com/BeastAD/

 

           (2)  PHONE:  By calling us at (269) 471-2915 to give us your credit card number and postal address.

 

           (3)  EMAIL:  By emailing your order to <sbacchiocchi@biblicalperspectives.com>.  Be sure to provide your  postal address, credit card number, and expiration date. For security reasons, you can email your credit card number in two separate messages.  In the first message you email me the first 8 digits and in the second message the last 8 digits, plus the expiration date.   Be sure to include your postal address.      

 

           (4) REGULAR MAIL: By mailing a check for $50.00 to  BIBLICAL PERSPECTIVES, 4990  Appian Way, Berrien Springs, Michigan 4990, USA. We guarantee to process your order immediately.

 

A Final Wish

 

      It is my fervent hope and prayer that this study, fruit of months of dedicated research, may help many to understand more fully that are living at the very end of time when Satan is intensifying his efforts to lead mankind away from the true worship of God, into the false worship of himself.

 

Revelation  reminds us that  “The Devil has come down to you with great wrath because he knows that his time is short” (Rev 12:12). This is his last chance to place his mark, name, and number upon people, that is, to lead mankind in open rebellion against God by enforcing idolatrous worship.

 

May God grant to each one of us spiritual discernment (“This call for wisdom” - Rev 13:18) to recognize the deceptive ways in which Satan is trying to win our allegiance to himself. May we seek every day a larger measure of the Holy Spirit to protect us against the end time deceptions of false worship and to enable us to live in obedience to God’s commandments, so that we may receive the Seal of God’s protection in the challenging times in which we live.

 

HOW TO CONTACT THE CENTER FOR CANCER CARE IN GOSHEN, INDIANA THAT TREATED MY CANCER

 

Two days following my 69th birthday, I learned that I had advanced-stage colon cancer requiring immediate surgery. Later I was told that the cancer had spread to the liver, infesting 90% of the organ and making its prognosis bleak. Several oncologists that I consulted, confirmed that I had Stage 4 terminal liver cancer, with only a few months to live. All what they could do was to prolong my life with chemotherapy for a few months or a year at best. No Cancer Center, including Loma Linda Cancer Center, had a clinical trial program for liver cancer. The impression I received is that nothing could be done to heal my cancer: I was doomed to die in a few months, at most a year.

 

Driven by my faith in God and optimistic attitude, I sought another opinion at the Center for Cancer Care in Goshen, Indiana, which is located only one hour away from Andrews University, where I live. Following a two-hour consultation with Dr. Seza Gulec (see the picture at my website by clicking http://www.biblicalperspectives.com/goshen), a pioneer in the field of nuclear oncology, I learned that my cancer was terminal but treatable with a combined strategy of chemotherapy and microsphere embolization - a treatment unavailable at most cancer centers. Within one month, the innovative treatment reduced the presence of liver cancer by almost 80% and decreased total tumor volume from 2435cc to 680cc. Within two months, two more treatments reduced my cancer by 95%.

 

Today I feel like a new man with a new lease on life. I feel like an old car with a decent looking body and a brand new motor. I have more energy than I have had earlier in my life. I can only thank God for His providential leading to the right place and for using the latest research to restore my health.

 

Click here to see the pictures of the various stages of my cancer: http://www.biblicalperspectives.com/goshen

 

The Goshen Center for Cancer Care is one of the few treatment facilities in the world to offer this breakthrough technology primarily due to the commitment of Dr. Gulec. A world-renowned physician, Dr. Gulec has dedicated years to research and develop the combination therapy, which greatly increases survival rates in those with advanced types of cancer. He has also authored landmark publications in lymphatic mapping, sentinel node biopsy, radioguided surgery and radionuclide therapy. Dr. Gulec currently leads the endocrine surgery, hepatic oncology, molecular imaging and positron emission tomography programs at the Goshen Center for Cancer Care.  To learn more about Dr. Seza Gulec click:  http://www.cancermidwest.com/main.asp?id=217

 

Truly I can say that I believe that the Lord providentially placed me in contact with Dr. Gulec, who has done for me what appeared to be impossible.  The Lord has used Dr. Gulec to give me a new lease on life. He is so proud of my recovery that he uses me as a show case at international nuclear oncological conferences. Now I feel like a new man energized to serve the Lord in a greater way in the sunset years of my life.  Somehow I feel that I have more energy now than I had at 25 years of age.

 

You can contact the CENTER FOR CANCER CARE in Goshen, Indiana in the following ways:

 

           1) PHONE: (888) 491-4673

 

           2) EMAIL: sgulec@goshenhealth.com

 

           3) WEBSITES: http://www.biblicalperspectives.com/goshen  or  http://www.cancermidwest.com/

 

RALLIES IN ENGLAND

 

           From February 29 to March 15, Cristina Piccardi and myself will present our Adventist message with words and songs at 6 rallies in England. The following are the dates, places and pastors to contact for detailed information;

 

MARCH 1: Edmonton, London. For information contact Pastor Steve

         Roberts at 01923-673-755

 

MARCH 2: Advent Center, London. For information contact Pastor

           Enrique Duarte at 01344 647429

 

MARCH 5: Willesden Church, London. For information contact

           Pastor Kirk Thomas at 01923 681 649

 

MARCH 8: Croydon Church, London. For information contact

           Pastor Brighton Kavaloh at 020 8851 3383

 

MARCH 12: Hanwell Church, London. For information call Pastor Everett Picart at 01189 755110

 

MARCH 15: Wolverhampton, North England. For information call Elder Noah Naylor at 01902 688783.

 

           If you live in England, you are welcomed to attend the rally that is closest to you. This time I will be joined by Cristina Piccardi, who is by far the best soprano in the Adventist Church. In 2005 she won the first price at an international opera singers competition. She left the opera world to sing the love of God. Her powerful and passionate singing will stir up your hearts.  I will do the speaking and Cristina will do the singing.  You will hear a fresh presentation of our Adventist message through Words and Songs. Accept my warm invitation and extend it to your friends.

 

PROF. JON PAULIEN’S VIDEO SEMINAR ON SIMPLY REVELATION

 

The  2008 Daily Devotional Book The Gospel from Patmos, is authored by Prof. Jon Paulien. He has done a masterful job in expanding each verse of the Revelation into a daily devotional thought.    

                                   

           To help you appreciate more fully  Paulien’s Daily Devotional, we offer you his DVD album on Simply Revelation that was released few months ago.  We have been airmailing the DVD album to church leaders, pastors, and lay Adventists in different part of the world. Several pastors have already shown the lectures to their congregations.  They wrote to me saying that viewing the lectures were truly an enlightening experience for their members.

 

      My wife and I viewed Simply Revelation on our TV on a Sabbath afternoon. Though I had already watched Prof. Paulien’s lectures during the taping session which I paid for, I was spellbound to hear him again offering so many refreshing insights into the most difficult book of the Bible. For me it is a thrilling experience listening to a scholar like Prof. Paulien, who knows what he is talking about.

 

Prof. Paulien is rightly regarded as a leading Adventist authority on the book of Revelation which he has taught at the Seminary for the past 25 years. His doctoral dissertation as well as several of his books deal specifically with the Book of Revelation.

 

The constant demand for Prof. Paulien’s CD album with his publications and articles, led me to discuss with him the possibility of producing a live video recording of a mini Revelation Seminar, which he chose to call Simply Revelation. As suggested by its title,  Simply Revelation aims to present simply the message of Revelation–not to read into Revelation sensational, but senseless views.

 

      The preparation of this video recording took several months. The Simply Revelation seminar consists of four one-hour live video lectures, which have just been recorded in the studio of Andrews University. An impressive virtual studio provides the background of the lectures. Each lecture is delivered with about 50 powerpoint slides. This mini Revelation seminar will offer you and your congregation fresh insights into the Book of Revelation. Be sure to inform your pastor about the newly released Simply Revelation, if he is not aware of it.

 

The file with the powerpoint slides is placed on Prof. Paulien’s CD album containing all his publications and articles.  The reason is that there was no memory left on the DVD disks.  In spite of my pleas, Prof. Paulien was so full of the subject that he used the full 60 minutes of each lecture, leaving no space for the slides’ file.

 

This has been a very expensive project, both in time and money. I sponsored it financially because I believe that many will be blessed by Paulien’s fresh insights into Revelation.  The regular price of the DVD album is $100.00, but you can order it now at the SPECIAL PRICE for only $30.00.  The price includes the airmailing expenses to any overseas destination.

 

If you have not ordered before the CD Album with Prof. Paulien’s publications, we will be glad to add it to your DVD order for only $20.00, instead of the regular price of $60.00. This means that you can order both the DVD album with Prof. Paulien’s four live video lectures on Simply Revelation and his CD album with all his publications and the powerpoint slides of Simply Revelation, for only $50.00, instead of the regular price of $160.00.

 

        As an additional incentive, I am offering you together with Prof. Paulien’s DVD/CD albums, also my own popular DVD album on The Mark and Number of the Beast, for an additional $10.00, instead of the regular price of $100.00. This means that you can order the DVD and CD albums by Prof, Paulien, together with my DVD album on The Mark and Number of the Beast, for only $70.00, instead of the regular price of $260.00.

 

        This research on The Mark and Number of the Beast, was commissioned by Prof. Paulien himself. He asked me to trace historically the origin and use of the Pope’s title Vicarius Filii Dei and of the number 666. I spent five months conducting this investigation which was professionally taped at the Andrews University Towers Auditorium. I use 195 powerpoint slides to deliver this informative two hours lecture which has been warmly received by Adventist church leaders and pastors in many parts of the world. For a detailed description of this DVD album click: http://www.biblicalperspectives.com/Beast/BeastPromo

 

Special Offer on Prof. Paulien and Prof. Bacchiocchi’s Albums:

 

           * ONE DVD Album of Prof. Paulien’s four video lectures on Simply Revelation at the introductory price of $50.00, instead of $100.00. The price includes the airmailing  expenses to any overseas destination.

 

           * ONE DVD Album of Simply Revelation and ONE CD Album with Prof. Paulien’s publications for only $70.00, instead of the regular price of $160.00. The price includes the airmailing  expenses to any overseas destination.

 

           * ONE DVD Album of Simply Revelation,  ONE CD Album with Prof. Paulien’s publications, and ONE DVD Album with Bacchiocchi’s two hours video lecture on The Mark and Number of the Beast for only $80.00, instead of the regular price of $260.00. The price includes the airmailing  expenses to any overseas destination.

 

Four Ways to Order Prof. Paulien and Prof. Bacchiocchi’s Albums:

 

           (1)  ONLINE: By clicking here: http://www.biblicalperspectives.com/revelation/

 

           (2)  PHONE:  By calling us at (269) 471-2915 to give us your credit card number and postal address.

     

           (3)  EMAIL:  By emailing your order to <sbacchiocchi@biblicalperspectives.com>.  Be sure to provide your  postal address, credit card number, and expiration date.

 

      (4) REGULAR MAIL: By mailing a check to  BIBLICAL PERSPECTIVES, 4990 Appian Way, Berrien Springs, Michigan 49103, USA. We guarantee to process your order immediately.

 

SPECIAL OFFER ON 12 DVD/CD ALBUMS FOR ONLY $150.00, INSTEAD OF THE REGULAR PRICE OF $1150.00

 

        This offer may sound too good to be true. at this time we are offering together as a package all the 12 DVD/CD albums we have recorded, for only $150.00, instead of $1150.00. Until now these recordings were sold separately, costing considerably more.  To make it possible for many to benefit from all these timely messages, I have decided to offer them together as a package for only $150.00, instead of the regular price of $1150.00. 

 

The Package Includes the Following 12 Albums:

 

           1) DVD Album with Sabbath Seminar with Words and Songs recorded at the Avon Park SDA Church on November 16-17, 2007. The album contains three DVD disks with 6 hours of recordings.

 

           2) DVD and CD Albums containing Cristina Piccardi’s sacred songs. The CD Album “Rejoice in the Lord” contains 11 songs. The DVD Album “Sing Unto the Lord” contains 10 songs.

 

           3) Prof. Jon Paulien’s newly released DVD ALBUM video seminar on Simply Revelation.

 

           4) Prof. Jon Paulien’s CD ALBUM with a dozen of his books, and all his articles.

 

           5) Prof. Graeme Bradford’s DVD ALBUM with a two hours video lecture on Ellen White. He shares the highlights of his book More than a Prophet. The album contains also Prof. Bradford’s the publications and articles.

 

           6) Prof. Bacchiocchi’s newly recorded DVD ALBUM called ABUNDANT LIFE SEMINAR.  The album contains 2 video powerpoint lectures: The Christian and Alcoholic Beverages and How to Build a Happy and Lasting Marriage. These two lectures summarize the highlights of Bacchiocchi’s two books Wine in the Bible and The Marriage Covenant. Two separate files with 225 powerpoint slides are included.

 

           7) Prof. Bacchiocchi’s DVD ALBUM containing 10 video powerpoint lectures on the Sabbath and Second Advent.  Some of the lectures show the documents Prof. Bacchiocchi found in Vatican libraries on the role of the papacy in changing the Sabbath to Sunday. This album contains the popular powerpoint SABBATH/ADVENT seminars Prof. Bacchiocchi presents in many countries.

 

           8) Prof. Bacchiocchi’s DVD ALBUM on Cracking the Da Vinci Code. The album contains a two hours video lecture, professionally taped with a virtual studio as a background. A separate file with 200 powerpoint slides is included.

 

           9) Prof. Bacchiocchi’s DVD ALBUM on The Mark and the Number of the Beast. The album contains the two hours video lecture and a separate powerpoint file with the 200 slides used for the lecture.

 

           10) Prof. Bacchiocchi’s  CD ALBUM with all his books and powerpoint lectures. The album consists of two disks. The first disk has all his 18 books and over 200 articles. The second disk has the slides and script of 25 of Prof. Bacchiocchi’s popular PowerPoint presentations.

 

           11) Prof. Bacchiocchi’s  DVD ALBUM on The Passion of Christ.  The album contains the 2 hours live interview conducted by 3ABN on Prof. Bacchiocchi’s book The Passion of Christ in Scripture and History.

 

           12) Prof. Bacchiocchi’s MP3 AUDIO ALBUM which contains 2 disks with 22 AUDIO lectures on vital biblical beliefs and practices. Ideal for listening in your car while driving.

 

        You can see the picture of all the 12 ALBUMS and read a detailed description of them, just by clicking at this link:http://www.biblicalperspectives.com/albumoffer.htm

 

How to Order the Package of the 12 Albums:

 

        You can order the complete package of 12 DVD/CD Albums for only $150.00,  instead of the regular price of $1150.00, in four different ways:

 

           1)  ONLINE: By clicking here: http://www.biblicalperspectives.com/albumoffer.htm

 

           (2)  PHONE:  By calling us at (269) 471-2915 to give us your credit card number and postal address.

 

           (3)  EMAIL:  By emailing your order to <sbacchiocchi@biblicalperspectives.com>.  Be sure to provide your  postal address, credit card number, and expiration date. For security reasons, you can email your credit card number in two separate messages.  In the first message you email me the first 8 digits and in the second message the last 8 digits, plus the expiration date.   Be sure to include your postal address.      

 

           (4) REGULAR MAIL: By mailing a check for $150.00 to  BIBLICAL PERSPECTIVES, 4990  Appian Way, Berrien Springs, Michigan 4990, USA. We guarantee to process your order immediately.

 

 

 

NEW VIDEO RECORDING ON THE SANCTUARY BY PROF. ROY GANE

 

           Few days ago Roy Gane, Ph. D., Prof. of Hebrew Bible and Ancient Near Eastern Languages at Andrews University Theological Seminary, made a video recording of four of his popular lectures on the sanctuary. You can see a preview of the recording on line by clicking at this link: http://www.preludefilms.com/preview.html

 

           The DVD is distributed through a personal website that Roy Gane has set up. I was unable to sponsor the recording and distribution of this informative and timely DVD, simply because I do not have the time to take on additional responsibilities. But I promised that I would do my best to promote this timely recording. The title of the DVD album is Altar Call: Sacrifice, Sanctuary, and Salvation.  

 

Altar Call: Sacrifice, Sanctuary, and Salvation

 

Altar Call is about God’s plan to rescue us, as revealed in the services of His sanctuary. These fascinating services demonstrate His character of love, which includes both justice and mercy. They give us hope by revealing that God wants to dwell with us. They teach us how to interact with Him in order to receive the benefits of Christ’s sacrifice. They show us how to get in touch with Jesus where He is working for us right now during the final phase of His ministry in the heavenly sanctuary.

 

To many Christians, Christ’s prolonged absence since He ascended to heaven is a mystery. But the Bible reveals that He is continuing to save us, and it invites us to get in touch with Him where He is now - in His sanctuary in heaven. By becoming acquainted with what He is doing in the control center of the universe, we can enjoy closer interaction with Him, more fully experience His transforming grace, and have confidence that we are at peace with God.

 

The DVD contains four 1 hour lectures by Roy E. Gane, Professor of Hebrew Bible and Ancient Near Eastern Languages and Director of the Ph.D./Th.D. and M.Th. programs at the Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary at Andrews University. Born in Sydney, Australia, he graduated from Pacific Union College in 1977 with a B.A. in theology and a B.Mus. in piano performance. He completed his M.A. (1983) and Ph.D. (1992) in Hebrew language and literature at the University of California and taught in the Religion Department of Pacific Union College from 1992-94 before moving to Andrews University.

 

How to Order Altar Call: Sacrifice, Sanctuary, and Salvation

 

Simply click: http://preludefilms.com

 

At a time when the sanctuary doctrine is being challenged within and without the Adventist Church, it is refreshing to see an outstanding Adventist scholar showing  the biblical validity and relevance of this doctrine. I strongly encourage you to order this DVD album, simply by clicking at this link: http://www.preludefilms.com/store.html

 

In the next newsletter you will read Part 2 of Prof. Roy Gane article on “Legalism and Righteousness by Faith.” The two parts article just appeared in the January and March issue of MINISTRY,  An International Journal for Clergy. Many of you have asked for the footnotes of the articles. You can find both the two-parts article and footnotes at this link: http://www.ministrymagazine.org/

 

INCREDIBLE NEW OFFERS ON HITACHI PROJECTORS

 

HITACHI has released the new CP-X400 3000 lumens projector, which replaces the CP-X444.  The new projector has an impressive high resolution, low fan noise, and a wealth of connectivity options. The most impressive feature of this projector is the incredible price of only $1395.00 to help especially our churches and schools in developing countries. The price includes a three years replacement warranty.

 

This is the special offer on the following two models:

 

CP-X400 HIGH RESOLUTION 3000 LUMENS - Only $1395.00

          This is the lowest price for an HITACHI 3000 lumens projector.

 

CP-X1250 HIGH RESOLUTION 4500 LUMENS Only $3795.00

          Previous SDA price for the 4500 lumens was $4900.00

 

WARRANTY: The above prices include a 3 years 24/7 replacement warranty worth about $285.00.

 

 You can order the HITACHI projectors online by clicking at this link: http://www.biblicalperspectives.com/cart/catalog/index.php?cPath=24  If you have a problem ordering online, call us at (269) 471-2915.  We will take your order by phone and process it immediately.

 

THE SMALLEST & MOST POWERFUL REMOTE PRESENTER

 

If you are looking for an outstanding REMOTE for your PowerPoint presentations, you will be pleased to know HONEYWELL has come out with the smallest and most powerful remote in the market.

 

The size of the transmitter is smaller than a credit card. You can stick it inside the palm of your hand and nobody can see it. I tested the remote in an open environment, and the radio signal can go up to 400 feet of distance. IT IS INCREDIBLE! The transmitter has three button: forward, backward, and laser.

 

You can order online the new POWERPOINT  PRESENTER simply by clicking here: http://www.biblicalperspectives.com/cart/catalog/product_info.php?cPath=27&products_id=67

 

If you have a problem ordering online, simply call us at (269) 471-2915.  We will take your order by phone. You can also email us your order at <sbacchiocchi@biblicalperspectives.com>, giving us your address, credit card number, and expiration date.

 

DOES YOUR CHURCH OR SCHOOL NEED A SCREEN?

 

If your church/school is looking for a screen, the DA-LITE SCREEN COMPANY, the largest manufacture of screens in the world, has agreed to offer their line of screens to our Adventist churches and schools at about 30% discount.

 

The procedure is very simple. Visit the DA-LITE SCREEN COMPANY website at http://www.da-lite.com. You will see hundreds of models of screens with their respective prices. Once you find the screen that best suits your church, give us the model number by phone (269) 471-2915 or email your request <sbacchiocchi@biblicalperspectives.com> We will forward your order immediately to DA-LITE that will ship the screen directly to your address. You will receive the screen at about 30% discount.

 

BED & BREAKFAST FACILITIES IN LONDON, ENGLAND

 

If your travel plans call for a stop in London, you will be pleased to learn about a most gracious Adventist couple that offer the best accommodation and breakfast I have ever enjoyed. Their home has become my home away from home when I am in London.  See details at: http://www.biblicalperspectives.com/Promotions/BED&BREAKFAST.htm   Their new home phone numbers are: 020 8429-3140 or 020 8819-5708