Q: Some Adventist leaders in my country compare the Seventh-day Adventist Church to the ark of Noah during the flood. They tell us that Christ will say to those who are not Adventists, “I never knew you.” Is this biblical? — Gin, from Myanmar
A: To answer the second part of your question first, Jesus says in Matthew 7: 21, “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven.” Then in vs. 22 Jesus quotes all of the good works that these people claim to have done, at the end of which He tells them, “I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!” (vs. 23).
Here Jesus is addressing those who expect to be saved by their works, but are actually practicing “lawlessness.” This could apply to anyone who makes these choices, including those who claim to be Adventist.
There are many precious people who have lived up to all of the faith they knew, and died trusting in Jesus. There will be more than just Seventh-day Adventists in heaven!
Now, regarding Noah’s ark, the Bible tells us that “Just as it was in the days of Noah, so will it be in the days of the Son of Man. They were eating and drinking and marrying and being given in marriage, until the day when Noah entered the ark, and the flood came and destroyed them all” (Luke 17:26,27, ESV).
God gave an important message to Noah, and for 120 years he warned the people that their world was coming to an end. The only way to be saved was to believe God’s message and come into the ark. Every person had the opportunity to accept the message and be saved. Those who rejected it were lost.
Today, in a world filled with evil and violence, God has entrusted to His remnant people — the Seventh-day Adventist Church — His last day message found in Rev. 14:6-10, the three angels’ messages. The essence of which is found in vs. 7: “’Fear God and give glory to Him, for the hour of His judgment has come; and worship Him who made heaven and earth, the sea and springs of water.’”
Just before Jesus comes, every person on earth will have the opportunity to decide whether they will be saved or lost — whether they will receive the seal of God or the mark of the beast (see Rev. 7:2,3; Rev. 9:4; Rev. 13:16-18). There are only two choices — to follow God, or to follow the beast.
Just as “Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord” (Gen. 6:8), so can we. We aren’t saved because we are Seventh-day Adventists; we’re saved because we have accepted Jesus as our Savior, we have accepted His revealed truth in the Bible, and we have chosen to follow Him. “Noah walked with God; … according to all that God commanded him, so he did” (Gen. 6:9b, 22).
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