Tab-A-Letter (monthly newsletter)

MAY 2019


Seven Powerful Words

“In Christ is life, Original, Unborrowed, Underived.”

(The Personal Testimony of M.L. Andreasen)

By Pastor Rob Benardo


“In Christ is life, original, unborrowed, underived” is from The Desire of Ages, p. 530. Many ingenious arguments have been put forth to say that what Mrs. White wrote does not really mean what she put in writing. One such man was M. L. Andreasen who was an anti-Trinitarian at the time.


As he read those seven words, he understood clearly their true intent, but he did not believe Mrs. White actually wrote them.  Surely, he thought, “her secretaries placed that sentence in the book”. In hopes of knowing for sure, He traveled to California and spent three months in her home at     Elmshaven studying her manuscripts in her own hand writing.    While there, he became absolutely convinced of the accuracy of her published position. He recalled the impact this statement had on him and some of his contemporaries when it was published.


“I went out to California to see Sister White. She received me graciously and I stayed for some months. I told her what I had come for. She listened kindly to me and said that I might have access to her writings. I said, ‘I am not interested in that which has been printed. I think I have read it all. I want to know in what form it was before it was sent to the printer.’ I believed at that time that her copyists and proofreaders had fixed it up, for it seemed certain to me that she could not have written it in the form it appeared in print. I had with me a number of quotations that I wanted to see if they were in the original in her own handwriting. I remember how astonished we were when Desire of Ages was first published, for it contained some things that we considered unbelievable, among others the doctrine of the Trinity which was not then generally accepted by the Adventists. Some of the quotations concerned theology, others I had selected for their beauty of expression. I wanted to see how these quotations looked before they were corrected by the proofreaders.


“So I was given access to the manuscripts. I stayed in California several months. Being a reasonably fast reader, I read nearly all Sister White had written in her own handwriting. I was particularly interested in the statement in Desire of Ages which at one time caused great concern to the denomination theologically: ‘In Christ is life, original, unborrowed, underived.’ p. 530. That statement may not seem very revolutionary to you, but to us it was. We could hardly believe it, but of course we could not preach contrary to it. I was sure Sister White had never written, ‘In Christ is life, original, unborrowed, underived.’ But now I found it in her own handwriting just as it had been published. It was so with other statements. As I checked up, I found that they were Sister White’s own expressions.”  M. L. Andreasen, “Testimony of M. L. Andreasen,” Ellen G. White Estate Document File 961, October 15, 1953.


When he read these seven significant powerful words, “In Christ is life, original, unborrowed, underived,” in Mrs. White’s own handwriting, he was convinced that the identical words in The Desire of Ages were hers and likewise in her other publications. Consequently, he ceased being an anti-Trinitarian and became a Trinitarian along with many other Seventh-day Adventists of his day. May God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit bless you today!


LET YOUR LIGHT SHINE…by Lorrie Rietman

We spend a lot of time at play grounds these days! While watching my children one day, 3 teenage boys wandered into the playground, swinging sticks around and generally acting obnoxious. Soon after a younger boy, probably around 11 years old, rode his bike over and confronted the teens about stealing a football. They reacted by cursing and acting “tough” by harassing him and sticking their sticks in the spokes of his tires. The boy turned around and rode away. A few minutes later he came back and started climbing around at the other end of the playground. The teens came toward him, picking on him and pretending to steal his bike. Finally they left in a barrage of profanity.

The boy continued to play and then started walking around holding a branch like a gun. This alarmed me, especially when he approached Nathaniel. I walked forward to instruct him to leave my child alone. He walked away. Soon after he started talking to me about dinosaurs! As Nathaniel rode a bouncing tyrannosaurus structure, the boy described all the dinosaurs and explained why the T-Rex was king.

The power of influence; among the 3 teen boys there was a clearly-seen hierarchy. One was the leader while another said “he is just a kid, leave him alone.” Still, that teen went along with the other two. The younger boy seemed drawn to the teens who were bullying him. He came back when he knew they were still there. When they were gone he started to act in a bullying manner himself. It was so sad because this boy was just a child, craving attention. The attention I gave him, even though it was to tell him what to do, he felt comfortable to talk freely about what interested him. 

“Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good”, Romans 12:21. The default of this world is selfishness and evil, even from childhood. However, it does not have to prevail. With intentional effort, kindness and Godliness can spread even more so. “The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it”, John 1:5. Evil can and will be overcome. Darkness will be done away with one day. We need to let our lights shine for the Lord because our world so desperately needs to see Him and His ways; on the playground, in the workplace, in our homes, in our church. 



STEWARDSHIP…by Chris VanderWaal

We were saddened to learn this week of the death of one of our most valued members.  His name was Someone Else. Someone’s passing creates a vacancy that will be difficult to fill.  Mr. Else has been with us for many years and for every one of those years, Someone Else did far more than a normal person’s share of the work. Whenever there was a job to do, a class to teach, or a meeting to attend, one name was on everyone’s mind.  We all would always say, "Let Someone Else do it."  Whenever leadership was mentioned, this wonderful person was looked to for inspiration as well as results. 

How many times can we all remember those familiar words "Someone Else can work with that group?"   It was common knowledge that Someone Else was among the most liberal givers in the church. Whenever there was a financial need, everyone just assumed Someone Else would make up the difference. We can all agree that Someone Else was a wonderful person; at times appearing superhuman in his abilities. Now that he is gone we have to face an ugly truth, we all expected too much of Someone Else. Now Someone Else is gone! We wonder what we are going to do. Someone Else left a wonderful example to follow, but who is going to follow it? Who is going to do the things Someone Else did? When you are asked to help this year, remember -- we can’t depend on Someone Else anymore.




By Brad and Tracey Hall, Directors of the Battle Creek Pioneers Pathfinder Club

Thank you church family for showing your support at our annual Pathfinder Investiture program in April!  We had a very nice turn out as we enjoyed our message from Pastor Craig on letting our problems fade as we grow closer to Jesus. Your pathfinders have been a blessing to work with this past year. We have enjoyed watching them grow in love, patience and leadership skills.

Unfortunately it is time to say goodbye to two of our senior TLT pathfinders, Shayley Hall and Asha Miller, as they will be entering into a new stage of "college life". We have been blessed to have them in our club for the past eight years. Their help and support will be missed greatly in our club, but we are eager to see where the Lord leads them in their next journey of leadership and service for His kingdom!

God is using our young people to make a difference in our church and community.  If you have or know of a young person between fifth and twelfth grade who would be interested in joining pathfinders you can email us for more information:   




Prayer Breakfast/Mother’s day brunch: Sunday, May 12: United Prayer Group at 9:00 a.m. and brunch to follow. Reservations are requested; place them at the table in the foyer after church service.


LADIES TEA: May 6 at 1:00 p.m. in the Dining Room for the ladies “Tea/Craft” Day.  May 20 at 1:00 p.m.  We will have the Ladies Luncheon (location to be announced). Please contact Pam Metcalf for more information.


BIBLE STUDY: Exploring the Everlasting Gospel - Tuesdays at 7:00 p.m. in the Seminar Room.  We will continue our study of the most precious message the Lord sent to His people.  It is a very powerful message designed by Him for His people giving the assurance of salvation and the necessary power to prepare them for the time of trouble, which is brewing in the world today.  From Jerry Finneman 


VISITATION MINISTRY: Meets at 3:00 p.m. in the Seminar Room the 1st and 3rd Sabbath each month.


Vacation bible school: June 24-28: Save the date for Vacation Bible School! Operation Arctic will be held from 6:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. All kids from grades K-6 are invited to attend!