What's at the Center? LSU Students Explore ... SDA Beliefs

Speaker: Categories: Feb 13, 2010


[27min, 42sec / 42min, 8sec]


Over the past three decades San Diego Adventist Forum has featured a variety of presentations focused on individual SDA beliefs as well as the assembling of those beliefs identified as the 27. Some of those sessions have questioned the biblical support for items included in the 27. Some have heard from denominational leaders directly involved in selecting beliefs to be numbered among the 27. Browsing through the titles of those presentations is of interest - and may also prompt one to question the cultural milieu in which the presentations were made. But what would lead SDAFnowto seek to learn how SDA university students perceive the 27 or 28?

Following the presentation made by Dr. Gary Chartier last May, he was encouraged to sample the thinking of LSU students as to how they perceived the fundamental beliefs of Adventists. This February Forum discussion will provide opportunity to hear from selected students enrolled in an Honors Program Course in Religion - students whom Dr. Chartier asked to"reflect on the thematic integration of religious beliefs."

He notes:"Some students chose to consider themes - including love and acceptance - that might be used to organize and interpret statements of Seventh-day Adventist beliefs. Some considered organizing principles for other sets of beliefs, Christian and non-Christian, real and imaginary."

The February 13 session will allow for the voices of younger SDAs, on their way to becoming denominational leaders, to be heard - voices and convictions which may prove challenging to the more mature (older and more experienced) listeners.

Some may ponder whether it makes any difference how/what university seniors think about the Twenty-Seven, now Twenty-Eight Fundamental Beliefs. How interested are you as you read these paragraphs?


Gary Chartier is Associate Dean of the School of Business and Associate Professor of Law and Business Ethics at La Sierra University. He holds a PhD in Christian theology from the University of Cambridge and a JD from UCLA. He is the author of three books -The Analogy of Love(Imprint Academic 2007),Economic Justice and Natural Law(Cambridge 2009), andThe Conscience of an Anarchist(forthcoming) - and of almost thirty scholarly articles, which have appeared in publications including theOxford Journal of Legal Studies,Legal Theory,Religious Studies, theAnglican Theological Review, and theUCLA Law Review. (He urges that more time be focused on those assisting him in this presentation - the Honors Program students from LSU - rather than on him!)

He has shared some of his insights and convictions with San Diego Adventist Forum on two previous occasions:

- 9-05 Natural Law, Same-sex Marriage, and the Politics of Virtue

- 5-09 A New Paradigm for Theology: Love as the Center and the Norm

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