By Deloris Trujillo
The Central California Conference (CCC) presented a virtual biblical symposium on final events entitled “What’s Next?” from Friday evening, October 23, to Saturday night, October 31. Each evening and three times on Sabbath, one of seven Adventist theologians, as well as a discussion group of CCC pastors on Sabbath morning, made presentations on the Book of Revelation. Various scholars from Adventist universities shared their vast knowledge on compelling topics such as the time of trouble, the mark of the beast, Sunday laws, date setting, and the remnant.
Adventists have always recognized the importance of studying Revelation. And yet, the book is often misunderstood, and wild theories can develop that distract from its significance and crucial message for our times. Ellen White advised us, “This revelation was given for the guidance and comfort of the church throughout the Christian dispensation” (The Acts of the Apostles, p. 583). Therefore, “We are to proclaim to the world the great and solemn truths of Revelation” (Evangelism, p. 196).
It is for this reason, that Pierre Steenberg, CCC evangelism/ministerial director, Eddy Perez, CCC evangelist, and Sergio Cano, CCC creative arts director, spent long hours and even sleepless nights to arrange for this symposium to take place. Other team members prepared to pray with and answer questions of participants.
“We wanted this symposium to explain what the church believes and to bring clarity to the final events of earth’s history amongst the clamoring multitude of voices,” Steenberg said. “With world events hurling us into uncertainty, hopelessness, and fear, many are flocking to messages that try to make sense of the senseless. Some set dates for Jesus’ return. Others interpret Scripture in strange ways or misuse statements from Ellen White. Some even claim to be representing the beliefs of the Adventist church but end up eroding the faith of our members. In the midst of chaos, we can hear the footsteps of an approaching God. The time to prepare is now.”
In welcoming viewers, CCC President Ramiro Cano further reiterated the purpose for this symposium: “The CCC is fully committed to this great Advent message while preparing a people to meet Jesus. We are keenly aware of the many voices that are heard today rallying the people to excitement and sensationalism, creating fear, anxiety, and fanaticism. As sentinels on the walls of Zion, we have a responsibility to present the plain, unaltered, and clear truth to navigate safely through the perils of these last days. Even though troublesome and uncertain times are ahead, the only safeguard from deception is a watchful, sincere, and prayerful searching of God’s Word and inspired writings.”