May 24, 2014, Alex Bryan, the newly reinstated pastor of the Walla Walla University, gave a startling presentation. All sanctuary windows were shuttered and taped leaving the congregation in complete darkness during a 22-minute sermon followed by an additional 2 minutes of silent darkness. His sermon advocated the necessity of darkness for us to completely communicate with God in prayer. (Even the graphics on the screen were reversed out, displaying only small white letters on a solid black background, again insuring complete darkness).
Significant sermon quotes included excerpts from:
- "Cloud of the Unknowing," by an anonymous 14th century mystic who is highly revered and advanced by the Catholic Church
- "Entering the Dark Cloud of God," by Barbara Brown-Taylor, a renowned Episcopal theologian.
It is also extremely significant to note that Brown-Taylor presented an identical sermon to Bryan's May 24 sermon on May 25 at a Festival of Homiletics in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The attached link shows Time magazine's article quoting her sermon. Who is teaching whom? and what?
Along with these quotes, Alex Bryan attempted to affirm his darkness thesis with scriptures from both the Old and New Testament, twisting texts all along the way.
In spite of numerous warnings from the General Conference President of the Seventh-day Adventist church to avoid Emergent “spiritual formation” and the mysticism that attends it, some of our progressive church leaders are determined to import these teachings into the congregations that they serve.
"Stay away from non-biblical spiritual disciplines or methods of spiritual formation that are rooted in mysticism such as contemplative prayer, centering prayer, and the emerging church movement in which they are promoted. Look WITHIN the Seventh-day Adventist Church to humble pastors, evangelists, Biblical scholars, leaders, and departmental directors who can provide evangelistic methods and programs that are based on solid biblical principles and The Great Controversy theme." Elder Ted Wilson, inaugural address, Atlanta Georgia, July 3, 2010
"This is the message which we have heard from Him and declare to you, that God is light and in Him is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth. But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin" (1 John 1:5-7).