Burnt Oak Adventist Church cracking down on jewelry creep

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Holland, MI – Not content to simply sit back and allow for the invasion of jewelry into Adventist congregations across North America, the Burnt Oak Adventist Church decided to get practical.

“We decided that there wasn’t any use in simply wringing our hands about jewelry creep in our churches.  We needed to speak up about it.  In a big way,” said the Burnt Oak Major in Modesty Chair, Joe Bradey.  “So we got to work.”

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Any and all forms of church outreach, the February 14th Remnant Hearts Banquet and the Harvest Festival Vegetarian Canned Food Drive were canceled so that, in the words of Bradey, “we could put first things first.”

After a year of late-night work sessions powered by decaff coffee and dramatic swigs of Martinelli’s , the council presented the “Hell’s Hoops” campaign to an enthusiastic Church Board meeting.

The idea was elegant in its simplicity.  Major in Modesty Creative Director Mary Kirkwood summed it up as “a 30-minute short film about Karen, a young woman whose life is torn apart by the blatant immodesty of her Forever 21 jewelry collection.”

Kirkwood went on to explain necessary expenses:  “The bulk of the film’s budget will be spent on the pyrotechnics in the final scene as Karen comes to her senses and sets fire to her jewelry case and its contents valued at $37.55.”

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“It’s go huge or go home, this final scene means that our total budget is going to be $250,000 but we should spare no expense in cracking down on immodesty,” explained Kirkwood.  “We can’t have Karen donate the jewelry to a thrift store or anything, that would just spread the corrupting influence of those hoops.  Destruction is the only way!”

Upon hearing this explanation, the church board voted unanimously to proceed with the project.  “When I close my eyes I see scores of former jewelry addicts seeing this film and torching their earings,” said board member, Matilda Oakes.  “This could start a revolution!”

To raise the production costs of the movie, the church held a Saturday night auction in the Fellowship Hall.  The event was a massive success, featuring an impressive collection of Rolex watches as well as a smattering of high-end tie pins.  A total of $550,000 was raised from member property.

“We are so excited to be able to finally shoot this film.  There is no place for vain adornment in this church,” said Bradey on his way out the door to his Maserati.


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27 Comments

  1. charlie

    are you actually serious. They spend 250,000 on a movie about not wearing jewellery? Donate it to charity for the love of god if you’re so desperate to do good, you smug, self serving bigots. This is exactly why the seventh day adventist church has such a bad reputation.

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  3. Janet Jones

    Even though this is satirical this mind set continues in our church.. the reason many young people turn away from Adventism. We as a church need to go big or go home and concentrate on what is important…spreading the Word..

    • If you had read and studied your Bible correctly and read your SOP and history of our church on this subject you would know that jewelry,according to God Himself,is idolatry which violates the 2nd Commandment! It is clearly taught in the old and new testament! It has been taught in the SDA church for over 100 years and was also taught in other protestant churches in EGW’s day before they went into apostasy! Exodus 33: 4-6 is a good place to start! This is after they had just worshiped the Golden Calf in the LORD’s name which was made with some of the jewelry that these “stiff necked” Adventists(oh I meant Israelites) were wearing! So I would say this is also God’s mindset! Grace and Peace!

      • A. Nonymous

        You’re reading Ellen White and the Bible totally ouf of context. A $2 plastic hoop is not the same thing as a $600 diamond earring and necklace set. Ellen White also taught that bicycles were prideful and vain. Should we stop donating bikes to missionaries and evangelists who are too poor to afford cars and who wouldn’t have access to petrol to fuel them anyway?

        Ellen White wrote to a specific time and place. There weren’t cheap plastic knock-off gems in her day. The only jewelry was real jewelry which was expensive because it was made form real precious stones.

        Moreover, in the Ancient Near East in Bible times, jewelry was made to depict Baal, Ashtoreth, and other gods. I don’t see too many Adventist kids walking around with pentagrams and Baal-idols on their wristbands and necklaces.

        If you want to go with a strict, legalistic, literalistic application of the letter of the Bible, you need to start stoning your kids when they disrespect your parental authority and stoning homosexuals when they refuse to stop practicing. I bet you’re not advocating for that kind of practice because it’s clearly not written to our contemporary cultural situation. You stone someone for sin today and you’ll go to prison for a long, long time for murder or attempted homicide.

        But since it isn’t illegal to nag and harass someone about a theological non-issue like a $5 pair of K-Mart earrings, the result of your atrocious behavior will instead be that even MORE of our kids will leave the church. Please, let’s grow up as a denomination! If the Holy Spirit cares so much about earrings, then you know what? Let’s be loving, praying, soul-winning Christians, and the Holy Spirit will take those earrings off of people Himself. You know what WON’T work though? Nagging, berating, and belittling them off of people.

  4. I agree with what they are doing! The minor details are the only things that set us apart. Spread the Word? Sure thats almost every other religion. The Sabbath? Okay now you are narrowing it down. The Three Angeles Message? Now that is really narrow, yet a small detail some people oversee within the church. A lot of members do not even know what the Three Angeles Message is! And that is one of the core fundamentals of our church.

  5. Tanya

    My formerly SDA parents sent me a link to your “Run for the Hills” article knowing that I would appreciate its humor. As a former SDA myself – with vivid memories of Time of Trouble fear – I enjoyed the humorous take on a subject that was the bane of my childhood existence. Accordingly, I located your website in the hope of finding more read-worthy satire. I wasn’t disappointed. Best of luck with your endeavor.

    • Tracy

      Tanya, I and many of my friends agree with you – that all the time of trouble gory scare tactics were quite harmful to us as children. It’s validating to see such things put in their proper perspective via satire. This article is especially funny in light of the way the Michigan conference seems to be pounding SDA’s back into the Victorian era right now.

  6. Bruno

    OK, if no jewelry, then what…? The text does give the alternative, or rather the more important matter. If there is a struggle to differentiate SDA from everyone else, there is a dramatically serious problem! People who are possessed by the “meek and quiet Spirit” are totally different from those who are not. So if we’re not, and we need to forbid jewelry in order to advertise our distinctiveness, we may as well just pack it in!…or repent in sack-cloth and ashes, and perhaps God will have mercy on us.

    • It is not “we” as “the church” that are forbidding jewelry! It is God’s word rightly divided and spiritually discerned that is forbidding jewelry and His church is just the vehicle for teaching and preaching it and with God’s ( Jesus’) authority as the Head of the church to enforce it! As the word says,”Wherefore come out from among them and be ye separate saith the LORD.” 2nd Corr. 6:17! But if you do not want to obey, you are free to not obey, but be willing to suffer the consequences of you choices now and in eternity for breaking the 2nd commandment!

      • The Bible actually shows that God loves jewelry. In fact, God Himself said: “I adorned you with ornaments. I put bracelets upon thy hands, and a chain on thy neck. And I put a jewel on thy forehead, and earrings in thine ears.” (Ezekiel 16:11-13)
        Many Bible verses actually teach that jewelry is a sign of God’s blessing. “For every text in the Bible that speaks of ornaments negatively you will find two or three verses in which God speaks of them favorably.” Lifestyles of the Remnant (Review and Herald, 2001), 59.
        “God also said to Moses, . . . 21 And I will give this people favor in the sight of the Egyptians; and when you go, you shall not go empty, 22 but each woman shall ask of her neighbor, and any woman who lives in her house, for silver and gold jewelry, and for clothing. You shall put them on your daughters.” (Exodus 3:15, 21-22).
        “Like an earring of gold or an ornament of fine gold is the rebuke of a wise judge to a listening ear.” Proverbs 25:12.
        “My soul shall be joyful in my God; for . . . He hath covered me with the robe of righteousness, . . . as a bride adorneth herself with her jewels.” (Isaiah 61:10)
        “If you do not know, most beautiful of women, follow the tracks of the sheep and graze your young goats by the tents of the shepherds. 9I liken you, my darling, to a mare harnessed to one of the chariots of Pharaoh. 10Your cheeks are beautiful with earrings, your neck with strings of jewels. 11We will make you earrings of gold, studded with silver.” (Song of Solomon 1:8-11)
        Costly name-brand clothes, Michael Kors handbags, Rolex watches, or expensive cars should not be the ultimate source of our feelings of beauty and self-worth. (1 Tim 2:9) But the Bible does not condemn jewelry. That idea is not biblical. It is a false gospel invented by the pentecostal Holiness movement, which tended to elevate externals above the heart.
        No amount of outward plainness can save us. Jesus is our standard of truth. He said salvation comes through loving God with all our heart, and loving our neighbor as our self. (Luke 10:27) I have found peace in a love relationship with Christ. I no longer see Christianity as a set of rules and regulations. Jesus said: “My yoke is easy and my burden is light.” (Matthew 11:30)
        Click the link on my name to see what a former Pentacostal / Holiness member found out about this subject after a deep Bible study. He explains exactly what I Timothy 2:9 and I Peter 3:3 say in context.
        In Ezekiel 16, God Himself speaks: “Again the word of the Lord came to me: . . . 3 . . . “Thus says the Lord God to Jerusalem: 11 And I adorned you with ornaments and put bracelets on your wrists and a chain on your neck. 12 And I put a ring on your nose and earrings in your ears and a beautiful crown on your head. 13 Thus you were adorned with gold and silver. . . .” The fact is, God loves jewelry.

        • It’s amazing how illogical some of our reasoning is. By coincidence, I showed some of those verses to a dear saint in the church recently, and she said: “I can’t accept that because I know jewelry is wrong.” The question is, where do we get our information that it is wrong? (Not from 1 Tim. 2:9 or 1 Peter 3:3, if you actually read the context. And it’s not in the baptismal vows, either.) Isn’t God Himself the best source for knowing what is right and wrong? I hope the dear lady will read Ezekiel 16:11-13 and tell me if God says it’s wrong. Or does He say it’s good? He Himself said He put it on the Israelites!

          • Tracy

            Nowhere in the bible can I find evidence against jewelry. I have come to believe (after decades of trying to figure out where this man-made mandate came from) that it is nothing more than a misogynistic dress code to enforce control over the women of the church and “test” their level of submissiveness. You will note that there are zero dress requirements for male SDA’s that differentiate them from a Lutheran, Methodist or Atheist. This obsession about jewelry is just weird and cult-like to me. I would even say Satan is laughing his butt off at how many good people have been mislead and driven off by this non-issue issue.

        • Susan Stormont

          This reply from Tom Smith is one of the most sensible, and Biblically correct explanations of God’s views on jewelry that I have ever read or heard. Thank you, Tom. God loves beauty, and to wear beauty is not a sin. To “adorn” with pride, and neglect the needs of humanity is sin.

    • Not so. “In that day the Lord will take away the finery: the jingling anklets, the SCARVES, and the crescent necklaces.” (Isaiah 3:18). The Bible speaks of scarves as finery, exactly the same as jewelry. But He was going to take away their finery because they had oppressed the poor, not because finery is inherently evil. God actually mentions jewelry in a very positive light in many scripture texts.

  7. Marytahir

    I love the irony within the article. Burning $37 worth of jewelry while driving a Masarati…..Often, we Adventists have missed the forest for the trees. Adorning ourselves is more than just the jewelry we wear. God’s law can be brought down to one word: LOVE. As Jesus taught, if we love everyone all the time just as He does, then we wouldn’t be so concerned with adorning our own lives. Nor would we be so concerned about pointing out the ways in which others are doing it wrong, we’d be too busy LOVING them! We shouldn’t dump out the baby with the bathwater. But maybe we shouldn’t be afraid of getting wet in the process of getting the baby clean….And then, sometimes we just need to laugh at ourselves :)

  8. Jesus viewed jewelry as a blessing; He recognized the adornment used by the devoted religious women of Israel when He said: “Do not give dogs what is sacred; do not throw your pearls to pigs” (Matthew 7:6.) In other words, wear your pearls because they are good things. Jesus praised the merchant who was looking for fine pearls and bought the pearl of great price (Matt. 13:45-46). Jesus mentioned a ring in a positive light (Luke 15:22) and praised the woman with the “ten coins” which every married women wore as jewelry on her forehead (Luke 15:8-10).

  9. Ray Kraft

    My grandmother wouldn’t have been caught dead wearing “jewelry,” but she had a whole box full of dozens of brooches!

    I once went to a Revival Series in our SDA church by a visiting pastor for five nights in a row, each of which he spent explaining in ponderous detail how any jewelry that encircles or pierces any part of the body, finger rings, bracelets, necklaces, ear rings, etc., is circular in nature, and the circle was the symbol of the ancient Egyptian Sun God Tamuz, of course I had never heard of Tamuz before, but we mustn’t wear jewelry ’cause wearing jewelry was a symbol of our rejection of God the Father and Jesus and the Holy Spirit and a sign of our allegiance to Tamuz.

    Even if we had never heard of Tamuz.

  10. Ray Kraft

    Which set me wondering, in my early teens, If only God is real, and all the false gods are just imaginary, why are we worried about them? Them don’t exist, only as figments of somebody’s overwrought imagination, so who cares?

    That sent me off thinking, a very dangerous thing to do in the SDA Galaxy . . . right there in the First Commandment it says ” . . . Thou shalt have no other gods before Me, for I the Lord thy God am a jealous God . . .”

    What?

    All these other gods are just figments of somebody’s overwrought imagination, bot God, the Eternal, the Omnipresent, the Omniscient, the Omnipotent, the Creator of everything . . . including everybody’s overwrought imaginations . . . is jealous of imaginary gods?

    And He doesn’t even say “There are no other gods;” or, “Thou shalt have no other gods,” He says, “Thou shalt have no other gods before me!” – which implies, linquistically, that there are other gods, and we may have them too, as long as God the Father is first in line!

    Why would God be talking about other gods, in the Ten Commandments of all places, if there weren’t any other gods?

  11. Ray Kraft

    Which set me thinking, a very dangerous thing to do in the SDA Galaxy . . .

    Job 1:6 says, “One day, when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, Satan also came among them . . .”

    So the sons of God have come to see their Dad, and Satan, the black sheep of the family, shows up too.

    Well, this story happened long before the birth of Jesus, so God had other sons before Jesus was born, and more than one, for “sons of God” is plural.

    Well, I thought, if Job is true, then Jesus can’t be God’s only son!

    So how many sons does God really have?

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