Counsels on Sabbath School Work, p. 28
…if a message comes that you do not understand, take pains that you may hear the reasons the messenger may give, comparing scripture with scripture, that you may know whether or not it is sustained by the word of God. If you believe that the positions taken have not the word of God for their foundation, if the position you hold on the subject cannot be controverted, then produce your strong reasons; for your position will not be shaken by coming in contact with error. There is no virtue or manliness in keeping up a continual warfare in the dark, closing your eyes lest you may see, closing your ears lest you may hear, hardening your heart in ignorance and unbelief lest you may have to humble yourselves and acknowledge that you have received light on some points of truth.
Whosoever cometh to me, and heareth my sayings, and doeth them, I will shew you to whom he is like: He is like a man which built an house, and digged deep, and laid the foundation on a rock: and when the flood arose, the stream beat vehemently upon that house, and could not shake it: for it was founded upon a rock. But he that heareth, and doeth not, is like a man that without a foundation built an house upon the earth; against which the stream did beat vehemently, and immediately it fell; and the ruin of that house was great.
David Gates is known and loved by many. His amazing stories of faith have been an inspiration for many to step out and do mighty things for God. In April 2008, David Gates’ newsletter encouraged his readers to read Ernie Knoll’s dreams. Around that same time, he presented a sermon entitled “The Converging Crises,” in which he spent considerable time promoting the dreams. This sermon was posted on the internet and stands as a testimony of how deeply David Gates was convicted Ernie Knoll’s dreams were of God. You can find the sermon on Google videos here.
Approximately one month later in his May 2008 newsletter, David Gates told his readers that he no longer believed Ernie Knoll’s dreams to be from God. He did not offer any reason why he had come to this conclusion, apart from a letter he included in his newsletter which he had received from someone known as Laura Lee Jones. Her letter is covered in great detail in chapter 8 and can be found in its entirety in an appendix.
Ellen White has counseled us to beware of spreading false reports which have not been verified. She says that those who spread these reports are connecting themselves with the arch-deceiver.
Manuscript Releases, Vol. 9, p. 23
Those who have been unwilling to receive the true testimonies of God, notwithstanding that these testimonies have been in the field for so many years, who know not the voice of the Lord, may listen to the voice of a stranger, and receive from a poor, deceived, unbalanced human agent what is supposed to be truth. What is the chaff to the wheat? Know that you are on trial for spiritual life, and accept no delusive sentiments. God save His people from Satan's snare.--Letter 61a, 1900, pp. 4,6,7. (To G. A. Irwin, April 23, 1900.)
Selected Messages, Book 1, p. 72
It matters not how blameless the character and life of those who speak to the people the words of God; this procures for them no credit. And why? Because they tell the people the truth. This, brethren, is my offense. But if a false report is circulated, if by some inference or conjecture an imputation is cast upon the character of Christ's ambassador, with what absurd credulity is it received! How many are ready to magnify and spread the slander! Such are revealing their real character. "He that is of God heareth God's words: ye therefore hear them not, because ye are not of God" (John 8:47).
Counsels to Writers and Editors, p. 49
False reports will be circulated, and some will be taken in this snare. They will believe these rumors, and in their turn will repeat them, and thus a link will be formed connecting them with the archdeceiver. This spirit will not always be manifested in an open defiance of the messages that God sends, but a settled unbelief is expressed in many ways. Every false statement that is made feeds and strengthens this unbelief, and through this means many souls will be balanced in the wrong direction.-- Testimonies, Vol. 5, pp. 295, 296. (1885.)
David Gates is the head of Gospel Ministries International (GMI), a faith based, volunteer-driven organization based in Collegedale, Tennessee. GMI directs and supports medical aviation programs in Guyana, Venezuela, Bolivia, and Norway. It also maintains 6 schools that provide basic education and industrial training in Guyana, Venezuela, Bolivia, and Peru. GMI’s largest ministry is through 3 television networks, Advenir Spanish Television Network (ASTN), Adevir Portuguese Television Network (APTN) and the Caribbean Family Network (CFN).
“The other website that has the experiences and dreams of the church elder Ernie Knolls is his name is 4hispeople.com." "I have them all on my computer and I share them with people, I am releasing a link to it on our web page, it is always a risky thing, it is always a risky thing endorsing somebody who is having dreams, but I have already dealt with about 7 or 8 pastors on it, and every one of us agree, they’re all scared, but they all agree this is of God. So once you make that decision, you can’t play games." "I am standing with it, I am taking my neck way out. But you know, every time you stick your neck out for something that is Godly, God always honors you. You don’t get nailed, you get honored." "When there is a reform message and a revival message, it’s always going to have difficulties to advance, so let’s get used to it.” Reference: The Converging Crises Part 2 (53:20 and forward)
Front Line Mission Report (Second monthly report)
“THE DREAMS OF ERNIE KNOLL (www.4hispeople.com)
“Some months ago I included a link to the web page of Brother Ernie Knoll which contained some of his experiences and dreams. I did this after carefully reviewing the material with several pastor friends and having found them to be in harmony with scripture and the Spirit of Prophecy. I soon received several letters warning that one of the dreams was not in harmony with the recommendations of the Spirit of Prophecy regarding the use of tithing since the angel in the dream reported that God will hold his people accountable if they know the funds are not being used in accordance to His will (www.4hispeople.com/Stand_Fast.pdf). Brother Knoll was urged to "test the spirits" according to 1 John 4:1-3. This is what happened in the dream dated April 12, 2008 (www.4hispeople.com/Love_and_Rebuke.pdf). Though credibility in the divine inspiration is usually greatly increased in those who read this last dream, please continue to carefully screen all future dreams. So long as they remain harmonious to God's Word as they have been so far, they have the potential to awaken the church and unite it in its mission and focus. The Bridegroom IS coming. Get ready!”
Up until April 2008, David Gates fully endorsed Ernie Knoll’s dreams. He promoted them in his newsletters and in public meetings. At this stage, Ernie had been given 30 dreams. The tithe issue that many like Ed Reid, Steve Wohlberg and Eugene Prewitt were opposed to was not a problem with David Gates (that has to say something). According to David Gates, about 7 or 8 pastors he consulted with agreed that Ernie’s dreams were of God.
WHY I NO LONGER AM ABLE TO SUPPORT THE DIVINE ORIGIN OF THE DREAMS OF ERNIE KNOLL
“On two previous reports I have included information regarding Ernie Knoll and his web page containing the dreams. I did so only after consultation with trusted friends and careful reading of his dreams posted on the web site. We found no serious problems with the material posted on the web up to that time.
“When I believe something to be of God, I take steps to support it. Yet, in cases like this, I have realized that delay in taking a position would have proved beneficial. A first-hand testimonial recently sent to me by a reader (attached) as well as forwarded letters by persons I trust and respect, have convinced us that our initial evaluation in support of the dreams was mistaken.
“I know that many people have been blessed through the mission stories and personal testimonies in my newsletters. It is my prayer that even in this error and correction, God will find a way to benefit the readers, for it shows how we, as humans, need each other for support and correction.
“It is a common tactic of the enemy to bring in the false just prior to the real. Let us not fall into his trap by becoming allergic to all dreams and visions as they are promised of God in these last days. Remain alert and close to your Shepherd and He will guide us faithfully through the rough waters ahead to a safe harbor.”
David Gates admits that he and others supported Ernie’s dreams after carefully reading them. They found no serious problems in the dreams. It wasn’t until he had received a “first-hand testimonial” as well as some forwarded letters from people he trusted, that he changed his mind and rejected the dreams.
What God told Ernie
Repent as I am Coming, November 12, 2008
God knows how she [Laura Lee Jones] contacted David Gates and spoke with a lying tongue, convincing him to follow her--a woman that is led by Satan, the prince of deception. Yes, even the very elect are deceived. David Gates then sinned against God by not following the direction he had been shown in Matthew 18:15. He did not come to you and verify as to the validity of the comments made by LJ. Even though our Father works with him he was wrong in not following the counsel given in the Bible.
David Gates failed to follow the Bible counsel of Matthew 18:15 and has been instrumental in leading many to reject Ernie’s dreams.
Moreover if thy brother shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone: if he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother.
The Review and Herald, May 12, 1903
Christ is represented by those whom he sends forth to work for him; therefore those who oppose his ministers are opposing him. This is just as verily the case when those who claim to have an experience in the things of God pursue a course that hinders and afflicts one of God's servants, by misstatements and false charges, setting themselves up as judges of his course of action, which they claim to understand, but which has been misrepresented to them, and which, therefore, they do not understand.
Let our people remember that the way in which they treat the Lord's workers means much to them. Let every one attend to his own work, and not regard himself as appointed by the Lord to watch for something to criticize in the work that his brother does. If a worker sees that a fellow laborer is in danger of doing wrong, let him go to him, and point out his danger, listening kindly and patiently to any explanation that may be offered. He dishonors the Saviour when, instead of doing this, he tells others of the mistakes that he thinks his fellow worker is making.
My brother, my sister, you are forbidden to make the mistakes of a fellow worker the subject of conversation. By speaking evil of another, you sow the seeds of criticism and denunciation. You can not afford to do this. Go to the one who you think is in the wrong, and tell him his fault "between thee and him alone." If he will hear you, and can explain the matter to you, how glad you will be that you did not take up a reproach against him, but followed instead the Saviour's directions.
Let us refuse to bear evil reports concerning our fellow laborers. The reputation of men and women is held of high value by him who gave his life to save souls. He has told us how those in fault should be dealt with. No one is sufficiently wise to improve on God's plan.
God has warned us not to put our trust in men.
Put not your trust in princes, nor in the son of man, in whom there is no help.
It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in man. It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in princes.
Cease ye from man, whose breath is in his nostrils: for wherein is he to be accounted of?
Thus saith the LORD; Cursed be the man that trusteth in man, and maketh flesh his arm, and whose heart departeth from the LORD. For he shall be like the heath in the desert, and shall not see when good cometh; but shall inhabit the parched places in the wilderness, in a salt land and not inhabited. Blessed is the man that trusteth in the LORD, and whose hope the LORD is.
The Bible teaches we are not to trust what man says. David Gates failed to heed this warning and the counsel to go to your brother first. Instead he listened to Laura Lee Jones’ false accusations. This letter is discussed in greater detail in chapter 8.
David Gates provides only the letter of Laura Lee Jones as evidence for why he suddenly rejected Ernie’s dreams. He does mention other letters, but does not give any detail about what they might have said. Considering he is an influential person in Adventism, it leaves one wondering if just the letter from Laura Lee Jones is what led him to reject the dreams, since there is no other evidence.
As you will see in chapter 8, Laura Lee Jones’ letter makes a lot of accusations against Ernie Knoll and provides no proof to support them. Much of it is recounting a phone conversation she had with Ernie and a meeting he had with a number of people where she was not present. Some points her letter raises include:
- God told Ernie the sealing of the 144,000 started in 1844.
- Ernie then changed his mind and said God didn’t tell him that.
- Ernie has changed the dreams so that it doesn’t contradict Scripture.
- Ernie believes his dreams over the Spirit of Prophecy.
- Ernie lied to her.
- Ernie has people weeding out the errors in his dreams before they are published.
- Ernie does not call people to repentance.
- Ernie’s dreams are filled with errors.
If true, all of these points would be enough to prove that Ernie was a false prophet. But the truth is, Laura Lee Jones provides no proof to support her claims. Why then did David Gates accept her testimony without first going to Ernie? Even worse, It would appear that David Gates listened to Laura Lee Jones’ false accusations and never bothered to check out who she is and what she believes. If he had done so, he may never have published her letter.
Laura Lee Jones claims on her website to be a Seventh-day Adventist (www.4angelspublications.com). However, many may be shocked to find out that she does not keep the seventh-day Sabbath. Yes, she may quote Ellen White and sound like an Adventist, but she has been deceived by the devil. For her, the Sabbath falls on different days throughout the year based on the moon. Some of those days may even be Sunday.
The Sabbath does not always fall on Saturday, the 7th day.
“Their belief is that the "true" system of counting time is tied to what is called a "lunisolar" calendar, based upon both the sun and phases of the moon. They contend every new moon restarts the seven-day cycle, rather than having a continuous seven-day cycle which currently runs the world.
“ ‘I could have gone my whole life and such a concept would have never occurred to me,’ says Laura Lee Vornholt-Jones, a 39-year-old full-time mother in Spokane, Wash., who has adjusted her traditional Seventh-Day Adventist outlook of Saturday observance to this alternate method since learning of it in late 2006. ‘It was Earth-shattering to say the least.’
Vornholt-Jones has posted this theory on her 4AngelsPublications website, where she offers her book on the issue, ‘The Great Calendar Controversy,’ for sale and for free viewing online.
“She told WND she still observes a Sabbath – that is to say, a biblical day of rest – every seven days; but she says the precise day of the week for that Sabbath actually floats from month to month when compared to the Gregorian calendar commonly used today.
The theory suggests whatever day of the week the new moon occurs on, that particular day becomes "Day One" of the month.
Then, count seven days from Day One until you reach the initial Sabbath of the month, which would always be on the eighth calendar day of the month. The next day of rest would be on the 15th, then the 22nd and 29th.” Source: http://www.wnd.com/?pageId=73013
Ernie’s dream says:
Repent, as I am Coming, November 12, 2008
The Father has seen how the one who calls herself LJ-- Laura Lee Jones--follows the observance of feast days and the lunar Sabbaths even though she has been shown that this is wrong. She does not listen to the voice of God the Father but the voice of the father of lies. She misconstrued comments you made and used them against you.
The Bible says God made the seventh-day of the creation week the Sabbath day.
Thus the heavens and the earth were finished, and all the host of them. And on the seventh day God ended his work which he had made; and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had made. And God blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it: because that in it he had rested from all his work which God created and made.
But the seventh day is the sabbath of the LORD thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates: For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the LORD blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it.
Life Sketches, pp. 95-96
Elder Bates was resting upon Saturday, the seventh day of the week, and he urged it upon our attention as the true Sabbath. I did not feel its importance, and thought that he erred in dwelling upon the fourth commandment more than upon the other nine.
But the Lord gave me a view of the heavenly sanctuary. The temple of God was open in heaven, and I was shown the ark of God covered with the mercy seat. Two angels stood one at either end of the ark, with their wings spread over the mercy seat, and their faces turned toward it. This, my accompanying angel informed me, represented all the heavenly host looking with reverential awe toward the law of God, which had been written by the finger of God.
Jesus raised the cover of the ark, and I beheld the tables of stone on which the ten commandments were written. I was amazed as I saw the fourth commandment in the very center of the ten precepts, with a soft halo of light encircling it. Said the angel, "It is the only one of the ten which defines the living God who created the heavens and the earth and all things that are therein."
When the foundations of the earth were laid, then was also laid the foundation of the Sabbath. I was shown that if the true Sabbath had been kept, there would never have been an infidel or an atheist. The observance of the Sabbath would have preserved the world from idolatry.
The Review and Herald, May 11, 1876
Another brother says it is only a few months since he has been enlightened in regard to the truth by reading a Review. He received the Signs of the Times also; and became convicted through reading these papers that Saturday was the Sabbath of the Lord. He felt that he must have something more than merely the light upon the Sabbath. He wanted to know some things for himself which had never been told him. He offered his first prayer forty miles from home while in camp. He sought the Lord then and there, and had come to this meeting to obtain further light and to follow it. This brother received the ordinance of baptism, and fully identified himself with this people.
The first Sabbath was not based on the phases of the moon. It was based upon the fact that God rested on the seventh day of Creation. The moon was created on the fourth day, so it cannot have any bearing on the Sabbath. Laura Lee Jones has been deceived. Her teachings do not hold up to the Bible.
Since David Gates is respected by many around the world, we would have expected him to provide solid proof for his sudden turnaround regarding Ernie Knoll’s dreams. He must realize that because of his position, what he says influences many people. In providing Laura Lee Jones’ letter as the only evidence for rejecting the dreams, David Gates has supported someone who is deceived by Satan. This could have been avoided if he had followed the counsel God has given in the Bible and Spirit of Prophecy. Sadly, David Gates did not contact Ernie Knoll to find out if what Laura Lee Jones had written was correct. The question must be asked: Will David Gates acknowledge his sin and try to make amends?
The Review and Herald, July 18, 1893
For years the Spirit of God has reproved and exhorted the professed followers of Christ, and has left us without excuse in pursuing evil ways, in criticising and finding fault with the message and the messenger whom God has sent. Shall we who cannot read the secrets of the heart reject the message of reproof, and presume to say that we are without fault? It is perilous to permit prejudice to arise in your hearts and speak against those upon whom sacred responsibility is laid, permitting yourselves to be influenced by a report that has come to your ears of which you have never sought for an explanation from the one accused.
Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers:
for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness?
and what communion hath light with darkness?
2 Corinthians 6:14