May 31, 2006

Web Letters

Reality Check?

I read the piece about Decoding the Da Vinci Code . You miss the point entirely: It’s a novel; a work of fiction, and a good one at that. It’s not anti-Christian or anti-Catholic in any way. But the way the Catholic church has carried on makes one wonder just what nerve the author hit, or how close parts of this work of fiction comes to certain truths.

Alex Munro

Editorials Appreciated
I enjoyed the messages in the May 11, 2006 Adventist Review. Stephen Chavez’s editorial, “The Real Scoop,” summarized Jesus’ ministry as a “ministry of action, not just proclamation.” Oh, that we could all follow that admonition.
Kimberly Luste Maran’s editorial, “Questions,” emphasized knowing the whys and hows of the system. But she pointed out that for all the rules, “Christ is still the Ruler.” If more emphasis is placed on these, perhaps things will be different.
Art Miles
Apison, Tennessee
Other Sources?In his piece, “Those Eyes Will See Again!” (May 18, 2006), Roy Adams wrote, “We don’t know her name--that alluring damsel who danced before them.”
True enough. The gospel accounts do not name the daughter of Herodias. However, if we consult extra-biblical sources (Josephus, Britannica, Ellen White) we may learn that the girl’s name was Salome.
Thank you for an inspiring and thought-provoking article.
Robert R. Wresch, M.D.

Ground-breaking Women

I’m responding to a news article on the Adventist Review website entitled, “NEBRASKA: Mid-America Union Elects First Woman Vice President” (May 25, 2006). I wish to make two points:

First, the article claims that this is a first for a union territory. Since the Review serves a world church, and the Review website has an international audience, would it not have been more accurate to say that this is a first in the United States or in the North American Division? Surely there have been female union conference treasurers in other divisions. There currently is one in the Caribbean Union, and probably several in other parts of the world. Is it a first merely because of the designation “vice president?” How is the position substantively different from that of treasurer? Are we saying that a simple change in nomenclature makes this a significant news item?
Secondly, I am gratified that the church is now willing to promote women to positions of responsibility commensurate with their gifts. However, our rejoicing should be tinged with some degree of shame that in 2006 this election is still an item of news. We are very late indeed. When will we be the head rather than the tail?
Austin C. Archer
College Place, Washington
The news item about Elaine Hagele should have been clarified to reflect the fact that it referred only to the North American Division, and that it was based on information then available. --Editors

A Question of Timing
I appreciated reading William G. Johnsson’s editorial, “The Truth About the Gospel of Judas” (May 18, 2006)--great information!
However, the editorial is late in coming. The editorial should have appeared two months ago when the issue was fresh. It’s outdated now. What you need to print now are articles dealing with the The Da Vinci Code.
The American public is open to any specious matter, so a claim about what our precious Bible says can say whatever Satan wants it to say. Perhaps Satan is producing falsehoods faster than you can swing your bat.
Steve Vance
The National Geographic Society released the book, The Gospel of Judas, on April 6, 2006. The editorial, “The Truth About the Gospel of Judas” was posted on Adventist Review Online two weeks later on April 20. Print production takes longer; the editorial went to press on May 9. The National Geographic cover story about The Gospel of Judas appeared in its May, 2006 issue.--Editors

God Knows, We Don’t
The editorial, “A Time for Silence” (Apr. 13, 2006), by Stephen Chavez is a timely message. His question: “Why is it so hard to admit that we don't know why things happen?” should awaken us to the fact that only God has all the answers to the things that happen until that glorious day when Jesus comes to claim His own. God, who knows the end from the beginning, saw and knew what would be happening when He would say, “It is finished!”
God saw the things happening these days around the world, and He told us to keep our eyes open and keep looking up, for our Redeemer is coming soon. God knows the “what, where, why, and when.” Ellen White wrote: “When the character of Christ shall be perfectly reproduced in His people, then He will come to claim them as His own” (Christ’s Object Lessons, p, 69) Our commission is to share our faith and set our homes in order.
Thanks for another great article. The weekly Review is like a visit by a dear friend.
Robert D. Williams
Lodi, California
Thank you for publishing the article by James R Nix, “Growing Up Adventist” (Mar. 23, 2006). I was 16 in 1931 when my mother and I were baptized in the East San Diego Church. We had become Adventists through reading the Signs of the Times loaned to us by our Adventist landlady. Later I attended Southern California Junior College (now La Sierra University), taught church school, and retired after 25 years at the Pacific Press Publishing Association.
Harvest Ingathering, Sabbath school, and church services all nourished my growing Adventist lifestyle. Thank you for reminding me once again how blessed it is to grow up Adventist.
Virginia Hughes Gladden