7. 1844 - The Day that Changed the World, by Walter Veith
Here are some fascinating facts about the year 1844, in which a major spiritual battle erupted in the minds of men. As we shall see, Satan brought many movements to life in an effort to halt the spread of light from heaven.
*We recommend reading "The Day of Atonement" article first to fully understand the Biblical importance of the year 1844
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Many would say that September 11, 2001, was the day that changed the world. On that day, the war on terror began and legislation was set in motion to limit American freedoms.
But was September 11 really the day that changed the world? Wasn’t the world already moving in a direction of control? The events were certainly shocking, but the truth is that 9-11 was just a catalyst for plans that had been waiting in the wings all along.
The real date that changed history was not in 2001, but rather in 1844. To most, that year means nothing. But in 1844 multiple movements were birthed that were destined to change the world.
The year 1844 is familiar to Seventh-day Adventists as the year that a group of Millerites mistakenly expected the Second Advent of Jesus Christ. On October 22, 1844, these men, women, and children longingly expected to see their Saviour and their loved ones that had passed away. They waited for the signs of Christ’s appearing. But as they watched the sun slowly slide below the horizon after a long day of waiting and watching, their hope slipped from them. As night fell, they faced their dashed expectations with bitter disappointment. Many turned their backs on God when He didn’t deliver on their understanding of Scripture. But some did not give up.
Little did those people realize the momentous times in which they lived. Four years later, in 1848, a group of people started coming together in what was known as the “Sabbath Conferences.” They studied the Bible to correct the errors in their thinking and to discover what the prophecies were really all about.
Out of those Sabbath Conferences came a theology that was not new but resurrected—many of these doctrines had been discovered during the Reformation and forgotten.
Here are five fantastic discoveries that had been hidden in the sands of time:
The Sanctuary doctrine—the whole plan of salvation laid out in type. As the people started unraveling this plan, they started understanding the ministry of Jesus and what had happened on the day of their disappointment.
Out of the sanctuary doctrine and the Great Disappointment, the great message of the Second Advent was formed, the Sabbath was discovered in all its beauty, the state of the dead was unraveled, and the Spirit of Prophecy was established.
These are the five pillars of Adventism, which make this denomination unique. It is also these points that many of our members want to water down, because it’s uncomfortable being different.
These doctrines inspired the pioneers to recognize the Three Angels’ Messages, and thereafter the Adventist Church movement was born.
Back in 1844, as all these events were happening, and Second Advent furor was spreading across the globe, was Satan sitting idly while the message went to the world? No, “the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed” (Revelation 12:17).
He devised a plan to confuse every kind of individual, from the one that doesn’t want anything to do with God and is looking for a way out, to the one that does want to follow God.
Knowing that he had to destroy this message of truth, Satan developed counter-strategies. His first strategy was a counter-theology. But he knew that a counter-theology would only offer two opposing theologies. Anyone could use the Bible to decide which theology was correct. He needed another plan. He needed to pervert truth and present lies as truth. The Sabbath Conferences were Bible-based, so Satan initiated strategies that were not Bible-based.
In August of 1844, Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels met in Paris and started a lifelong association. On November 19, 1844, Engels wrote to Marx, “We are at present holding public meetings all over the place to set up societies for the advancement of the workers…By a huge majority everything Christian was banned from the rules.”i Marx had already written the book The Essence of Christianity, where he called religion “the opium of the people,” so Engels and Marx were very pleased with the ban. Engels also wrote to Marx, “The criticism of religion is the prerequisite of all criticism and we are working for the abolition of religion and for real happiness.” And we see how much happiness the Marxist system has brought to its citizens.
This strategy still operational today. The trade unions of the world run on Marxist strategies. The sickle and hammer are their symbols, and they have kept the same old rhetoric since the beginning. The strategy of Marxism satisfied the underdog. The next strategy—atheism—targeted the intellectual.
In the same year, 1844, Charles Darwin wrote the first draft of The Origin of Species and sent it out to all his colleagues for evaluation. How much of the world has trodden into that cesspool? Satan was very successful with that ideology. We see it everywhere now—in universities and textbooks and even on buses, and we have the arduous task of presenting counter-arguments to something so stupid as this belief.
The great professors of the world—such as Dawkins—sit in the chairs of Cambridge and Oxford and belong to a society that calls themselves “the Brights.”ii Dawkins writes, “God almost certainly does not exist.” There is probably no more pathetic statement than that— either He exists or He doesn’t, but He certainly cannot “almost certainly not exist.” Dawkins is scared of something.
These counter-strategies negate God and soothe the carnal mind in the belief that we can be happy without God. But not everyone will fall for such a strategy, so Satan had to also begin a campaign of perversion of truth.
PERVERSION OF TRUTH:
In 1844, John Nelson Darby came up with a doctrine called dispensationalism—a method of interpreting the Bible that divides history into distinct eras or “dispensations” in which God deals with people in a distinctive way and, in some cases, in which God’s ethical standards change. The dispensationalist doctrine spread through the world like wildfire. Ninety-five percent of the Christian world today is dispensationalist. In other words, when you walk into any mainstream Protestant church, you’ll hear dispensationalism preached.
Dispensationalism is a Jesuit doctrine. Roman Catholic sources say that the founder of dispensationalism was the Jesuit priest Manuel Lacunza (1731-1801). Born in Chile and posing as a converted Jew under the pseudonym Juan Josafat Ben-Ezra, he wrote a large apocalyptic work in Spanish entitled The Coming of the Messiah in Glory and Majesty. It remained virtually unknown for many years. Then an enterprising man named Edward Irving translated it into English. Is it just coincidental that modern speaking in tongues started in Irving's church.
Darby took this doctrine and modernized it, after which Roman Catholic cardinals added a touch or two about the Antichrist coming from the tribe of Dan. They fed it to Christianity, which ate it hook, line, and sinker.
Not only did Satan bring in dispensationalism, he also brought in antinomianism—going so far as to say that it is sinful to keep God’s law. That’s really turning the Gospel on its head.
Satan also added a few extra twists in his perversion of truth:
Satan wanted counterfeit religion to flourish, so in 1844, the Quakers start quaking, and the Holy Spirit was "quaked" into the world.
In 1844, the rapping also started in a certain house, which a few years later, would be occupied by the famously occult Fox Sisters.
In 1844, Joseph Smith started the Mormon movement, claiming to be divine and of the order of Melchizedek.iii On June 27, 1844, Smith was martyred. Mormonism became a mega-movement of counterfeit Christian ideology.
The spiritualistic secret society Delta Kappa Epsilon also began in 1844 at Yale, ensuring that the universities were accessible for New Age error.
BABISM (the Baha'i Faith)
Siyyid ‘Ali-Muhammad rose in 1844 to say, “I am the Bab,” starting the Bahai movement. Ultimately, the movement for the unification of all religions under one umbrella began.
In the same year of 1844, the rise of the feminist movement began, inverting Genesis 1 and putting the doctrine of God on its head.
Every single one of these movements started in 1844, so that Satan could prepare the world for his deception.
But in the same year, God was quietly working to set up a truth that would stand for all eternity. In 1844, a Seventh-day Baptist lady, Rachel Oakes, challenged a Millerite preacher, Frederick Wheeler, to keep all the commandments of God. He preached his first sermon on the Sabbath in March 1844, and the Sabbath was re-established in that year.
In 1844, the noble preacher Charles Fitch accepted the Biblical teaching of soul sleep and another important truth surfaced.
In 1844, we also see the emergence of the Spirit of Prophecy. Why are we so scared of the Spirit of Prophecy? I’ve heard some say that we are waiting for a new prophet, because God certainly won’t do anything without bringing a prophet at the end to take us through to the kingdom. But typology tells us not to wait for another prophet. One has already come. The testimonies have already been written and the health message is already there.
But what‘s the use of a message without the means to broadcast to the world? God’s hand was over the creation of a system whereby this message could go to the world. In 1844, Samuel Morse, a mega-protestant who wrote more about the Bible than he did about telecommunications and was a fervent student of Daniel and Revelation, created the Morse code.
On May 24, 1844, he sent the first message from the Capital in Washington to the B&O Railway in Baltimore. The first words to run across the wire were, “What hath God wrought?” And from those humble beginnings, technology exploded.
Even the Columbus and Zinnia railroad was chartered on March 12, 1844. In that year, there were great advances in technology, transportation, and information. God had a message for the world, and Satan has a counter-message.
This counter-strategy was very successful with believers. But it was still not enough, because those who know their God and who have experienced the first love are not going to fall for lies. Satan's third strategy was to create a state of spiritual tauper in those who present the message. This plan worked marvellously and is still working today.
Satan’s greatest weapon was, and continues to be, the creation of a state of tauper. His efforts are directed to the remnant to silence their witness, to submerse them, and to make them go to sleep.
"As the Lord’s people show their determination to follow the light God has given them, the enemy will bring all his powers to bear to discourage them, but they are not to give up because of the difficulties that arise when they try to follow the counsels of the Lord." iv
If you desire to pursue the truth, you must set your face like flint. Satan has a counter-strategy against you and your desire to follow God and stay faithful. But say to yourself, “I will not be moved.”
We can expect strange things as we near the end of time. Every single wind of doctrine will be blowing. There will be a complacency that we cannot believe, but typology says we are to repeat the history of Israel. We would do well to study that history. What God did to the people of Israel in the desert is exactly what is happening to us—only we are worse, because we have much more light. We understand the issues of the Messiah, and the workings of the plan of salvation.
They had a type, we have an anti-type. We would receive every blessing if we were to stay separate from the world, but are we?
Consider the story of Balak and Balaam: “Please curse Israel, Balaam,” pleaded the pagan king. “I cannot curse them. I can only bless them.” “Well then, says the king, “Let’s get those ladies with the mini dresses, the beautiful ones, and let’s dance around them, and then we’ve got ‘em” (Numbers 22, 25).
We need a revival and a reformation, but reformation without revival is dead and revival without reformation is also dead. We’re all praying “Lord, pour out your Holy Spirit,” but if we don’t do what the Lord requires, how are we going to receive that blessing?
We are the bearers of that glorious message that was rediscovered in 1844. What are we doing with it? Are we proud of it? Or are we trying to excuse, apologize for, and cover up the noble beliefs that make us different? Such cover-ups are futile.
In eternal terms, the glorious truths of this Church will long outlast our petty attempts to blend in. Those of us who are embarrassed by these truths will find ourselves divorcing ourselves from these truths, and others taking our place.
Stand strong in the Spirit and in truth. We have nothing to be ashamed of, but everything to cherish and proclaim with strength and joy.
iv. Ellen White, This Day with God, 309.1