I want to especially thank you for the October Adventist Review. These well-chosen, wide varieties of articles written by experts in their fields, covered every angle of concern about the COVID vaccines. Thank you for this information we can trust and use in making wise decisions. The Review has been a valued magazine in our home since we were first married, but we feel it has become even more relevant as the years have gone by. Please keep up the good work.
Siloam Springs, Arkansas
Your October issue of Adventist Review provided a much-needed antidote to the anti-vaccination attitudes spreading in some regions of our fellowship. Jiří Moskala’s excellent examination of biblical principles regarding health and the treatment of disease (“Is Vaccination Biblical?”) leaves no excuse to claim a religious exemption from vaccination. Richard Sloop (“So Many Vaccine Concerns!”), after giving a thorough review of the current status of COVID vaccines, confesses, “Could it be that God has revealed these ‘discoveries’ to our world for our benefit? This is what I believe.” I do not doubt that such forthright support for vaccination will produce much pushback. I pray that those who desire to maintain personal freedom and refuse what “God has revealed” will come to see the selfishness of that position.
Edwin A. Karlow
Jiří Moskala’s article “Is Vaccination Biblical?” asks an easy question yet uses six pages to answer. Very, very few Adventists would argue that the Bible forbids vaccinations or that the COVID vaccines are the “mark of the beast.” The far more important questions are, “Should governments force people to take a vaccine without informed consent?” And what penalties are morally acceptable for those who choose to refuse vaccination? Loss of employment (New York), fines (Indonesia), use of restaurants (NYC), freedom to travel (multiple countries)? Should parents who refuse to have their children receive the COVID vaccine be charged with child abuse? Some have suggested refusing all medical services to the unvaccinated. Vaccine mandates certainly are not the mark, but they seem to share the same spirit.
In light of two articles in the September edition, G. T. Javor and his creationist-oriented message and John McVay’s “Mockery, Exaltation, and Reading the News” brought this quote to mind about nature recognizing the crucified Christ: “The heavenly hosts had known Him, and had sung His praise over the plains of Bethlehem. The sea had known His voice, and had obeyed His command. Disease and death had recognized His authority, and had yielded to Him their prey. The sun had known Him, and at the sight of His dying anguish, had hidden its face of light. The rocks had known Him, and had shivered into fragments at His cry. Inanimate nature had known Christ, and had borne witness to His divinity” (The Desire of Ages, p. 771).
Thank you to Bill Knott for your editorials, for being a voice crying in the wilderness. They have been consistently words that I believe need to be spoken, crucial ideas and thoughts that call us away from the pitfalls we are being drawn into. A vision of who or what we can be as a church. A reminder and calling out when we get it wrong. “A Sign of the Times” especially moved me—encouraging because it expresses my lament for the divisiveness and anger that are becoming a norm, discouraging because I had perhaps a small hope that my limited perspective was not accurate and that if I would just shift a little I would see that the negativity was coming from only a few people on the fringes.
I am challenged now to dig deeper and find my contribution to creating spaces for and modeling civilized, caring dialogue. Please keep praying over and agonizing over what to write. Know that there are readers that deeply appreciate your words.
Berrien Springs, Michigan
Very inspiring narration and well-written article and podcast by Sarah Kannanaikkel. Life’s greatest gifts for human beings include the use of language, logic, and the power of using words. Every morning we listen to His voice to align [with] His plan, which is always good for us. God’s love is genuine; so also is His Word for us. A word project like this is a positive influence on our inner health and on many who are reached by us. What a blessing it is to be empowered by the life-giving, life-changing Word of God and to find new glories in the Word of God every morning, and to have a closer walk with our Creator God, in whom alone is our salvation!
Dr. Marshall S. David
A seat belt will not absolutely prevent your death in case of an automobile accident, but it greatly enhances your chances of survival. And, consequently, is the law that you “buckle up.” Likewise, a COVID vaccination will not absolutely prevent your catching it if and when exposed. But it will greatly enhance your chances of survival and lessen the severity if you do. So while the choice is always yours, the consequences of your choices are not a violation of your freedom of conscience.
Love this! This is the way Sabbath School should operate.