3. Doesn’t the SDA Church have a range of unusual beliefs, which makes it a cult?

Yes, the SDA Church does have some distinctive beliefs that some might consider ‘unusual’. 
No, these beliefs do not make the SDA Church a cult.
What constitutes an ‘unusual’ belief is wholly subjective and really depends on who is asking.  It should be remembered that there is no such thing as one homogenous ‘Christian belief’, because a wide continuum of opinions exists within ‘mainstream’ and ‘orthodox’ Christianity.
Many of Adventism’s so-called ‘unusual beliefs’, which are commonly cited to label the SDA Church as a cult, are actually held by a number of other accepted Christian groups. As noted in SDA publication Questions on Doctrine:
“II. On Certain Controverted Doctrines Among Conservative Christians, We Hold One of Two or More Alternate Views. We Believe—
1. That man is free to choose or reject the offer of salvation through Christ; we do not believe that God has predetermined that some men shall be saved and others lost.
2. That the moral law of ten commandments, or the Decalogue, is the standard of life and conduct for all men of all ages; we do not believe that the Decalogue has been either changed or abolished.
3. That baptism is to be administered by single immersion; we do not believe that it may be administered by sprinkling, pouring, or trine immersion.
4. That man was endowed at creation with conditional immortality; we do not believe that man has innate immortality or an immortal soul.
5. That the wicked will be punished by suffering and complete destruction in the lake of fire; we do not believe in an eternally burning hell in which souls are tormented without end.
6. That the seventh day of the week is the Sabbath; we do not believe that the Sabbath has been abolished, changed to the first day, or is merely a seventh part of time.
7. That the principle of tithing is God's plan for the support of His church; we do not believe that tithing was only for the Jews.
8. That God created the world in six literal days; we do not believe that creation was accomplished by long aeons of evolutionary processes.
9. That the correct view of prophetic interpretation is best set forth by what is known as the historical school; we do not accept the systems followed by either the preterists or the futurists.
10. That church and state should operate in entirely separate spheres; we do not believe that in an attempt to control men's religion or religions activities the church should dominate the state, or that the state should govern the church.
11. That the ordinance instituted by Christ—that of washing one another's feet at the time of the Lord's Supper—is to be practiced; we do not believe that this was merely an accommodation to the customs and necessities of those times.
12. That we should abstain from such practices as the use of alcohol and tobacco; we do not believe that indulgence in these things is fully representative of the character of our Lord.”


  1. I think looking at the history and theology of SDAs, which fits strongly within a Weslyian-Arminian view (i.e. strong emphasis on free will), they really are like conservative Methodist reformists. In fact,Methodists were likewise a conservative reformist movement from Anglicanism. Thus, Adventists are to the Methodists, as the Methodists are to the Anglicans.

    1. Methodists that keep the seventh-day Sabbath you mean, mixed in with a big dose of Baptist influence.