Is paying for something OK on Sabbath if you call it a donation? Adventists speak up.



Is paying for something OK on Sabbath if you call it a donation? Some Adventists speak up:


Spencer Spendthrift, ABC Store Personal Shopper

“It all depends. If a legit Adventist recording artist has rocked a Friday night vespers concert and is offering a CD for a $20 donation after the program, that’s 100% OK. A bake sale that same Friday night would be crossing the line.”


Matilda Costosa

“Whether you call it a donation or a payment, you are still exchanging cash on Sabbath and that is not kosher. That is why I take care of all my Sabbath lunch Olive Garden meals with a gift card.”


Frank Pricerite,  Senior NEWSTART Granola Distributor

“Why bother with donations or regular payments on Sabbath when you can make elaborate arrangements to prepay for everything from parking to zoo admissions fees on Friday afternoon?”

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  1. Raymond S. Kraft

    “Then the King will say to the Adventists on his left, Depart from me! you accursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels, go to hell! – for I was hungry and you did not feed me, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, a stranger and you gave me no welcome, ill and in prison and you did not care for me,”

    “And they will answer, Lord! when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or ill and in prison, and did not minister to your needs?”

    “He will answer them, Amen, I say to you, what you did not do for one of these least ones, you did not do for me.”

    “And these will go to eternal punishment.”

    Matthew 25

    I was “born and raised” SDA, SDA parents, SDA grandparents, SDA great grandparents, SDA schools all the way 1-16, Loma LInda Academy, Rio Linda Academy, Pacific Union College, from birth to 23 I lived in the Adventist Ghetto.

    Once I got out of the Adventist Ghetto and began practicing law, dealing with people in jail, in prison, homeless, chronically poor, disabled, sick, mentally ill, trying to survive on $750 a month from SSI, or whatever they can scrounge if they’re not disabled enough for SSI or can’t navigate the application process and the hearings, people who go signing for money for food and get arrested for signing, “soliciting,” the cops call it, back to jail for trying to survive, I began to understand the intellectual and spiritual poverty of Seventh Day Adventism, obsessed with whether it’s a sin to buy or sell on Saturday, or wear a wedding ring, eat pork or shrimp, drink wine, spending billions (over time) to build churches to get together for a few hours a week and praise God, who probably got horribly bored with all that praise long ago, remember, He was around gazillions of years before us, he does not need us to tell him what a great guy he is.

    I walked out, leaving Adventism was the single best thing I’ve ever done for myself, no more wasting my money on buildings, no more wasting my time listening to the same boring old sermons every Saturday morning, over the years I’ve spent hundreds of thousands helping people in deep doo doo get out of deep doo doo, I adopted a homeless junkie chick who was signing on a street corner in Oakland, she was dying, told her “If you stay here you’ll be dead in a month, I’ll take you home, get clean, go to school, get a life,” that was a wild ride but ten years later she’s clean, just finished culinary school, now she’s going to become a drug counselor too and teach art and cooking classes at a methadone clinic.

    While Adventists are spending tons of time and money congratulating themselves as “The Chosen People” who have “The Adventist Truth” and the “Three Angels Message” and the “Spirit of Prophecy” and whatnot all,, what Jesus tells us very plainly in Matthew 25 is that all that does not matter, going to church does not matter, which church does not matter, which religion does not matter, no religion does not matter, paying tithe to the church does not matter, even sinning does not matter so much,, what matters to God is feeding the hungry, caring for the sick and the prisoners, sheltering the homeless.

    “The least of these, my brothers.”

    I’ve caught hell for this, but the words of Jesus in Matthew 25 tell us very clearly that “Salvation” is not “Salvation by Faith,” it is “Salvation by Works,” and the whole “Salvation by Faith” doctrine ginned up by Martin Luther and carried on by Ellen G. White is just a cop out so the religious don’t have to get their hands dirty feeding the hungry, caring for the sick, sheltering the homeless.

    It’s a lie.

    It’s a “false doctrine,” a doctrine diametrically opposite the unambiguous words of Jesus in Matthew 25.

    I don’t give money to any church. I don’t give money to charities. I pay rent, I pay for medicine, I pay for food, I do what I can to help some of “the least of these” live better lives. I can’t do it all, but I can do something.

    Once I was on a “mission” from PUC to San Francisco, I gave $5 to a homeless man who said he was hungry, he looked hungry, the two theology majors I was with immediately rebuked me for that, “He’ll probably just buy drugs,” they said, “Welll, maybe he’s hungry,” I said.

    At the last judgment, I think most SDA’s (and most of the self-styled “Christians” in most other churches) will be very surprised to be “those on the left” when the King tells them to go to hell.

  2. Wow, Raymond Kroft, quite a thought to share. Let me respond a bit. First, a practical in-the-gutter social sharing with needy people (hungry, depressed, homeless, addicted, stressed, lonely, Ill, confused) is exactly what God is asking the Adventist Church to do. That is not only Matthew 25, it is also Isaiah 58. So my wife and I have had a regular stream of distressed individuals live with us in our home in our 13 years of marriage. And I have preached a message somewhat similar to yours around the world. My wife and I started a prison ministry in Malaysia where we currently work to take a practical gospel to people who have never heard it.

    But it is a false dichotomy, brother, to contrast this type of work you do with the righteousness by faith taught by Ellen White and earlier by Martin Luther. As a student of law I think you would appreciate the book D’sozo by Dave Girdler. It outlines historically how God has wonderfully prospered congregations that have rallied around the “benevolent work” as Ellen called it.

    The reason you observed so pitifully little of this during your Adventist sojourn is that you live in the age of Laodicean. That is, Jesus says to the church in our age, you are not converted. Whether Adventist, or Baptist, or Methodist or Catholic, most Christians today are destitute of the.Spirit and are in as pitiful a condition as the hungry begged you described. So why don’t I walk out and join you on the streets? Because that would rob me of my greatest tools and of our efficiency. In the church we unite to do this work. The mixed skills and experiences of the body accomplish more real good than could the same people as lone rangers. And more than that, the true gospel in the Word of God is powerful. It turns dopeys around and makes sots sober. The Bible harmonizes with Matthew 25. So, Mr Kroft, email me at if you would like to know a bit more about this type of Adventism that you didn’t see in your youth.

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