“It’s the book that absolutely changed my life.”
Pastor John Bradshaw, president of It Is Written, a Christ-centered media evangelism ministry that proclaims the everlasting gospel worldwide, shares his personal experience of how The Great Controversy had a significant impact on his life.
As Seventh-day Adventists, the Lord has given us The Great Controversy to share His complete message of love. “The Great Controversy, should be very widely circulated…. for in [this book], the last message of warning to the world is given more distinctly than in any…other books."1
This reality is the inspiration behind the Great Controversy Project, 2.0, a World Church initiative for the years 2023 and 2024. The project seeks to include every church member in delivering millions of copies of the book into the hands and homes of people searching for truth in these unprecedented times. Though the mass distribution of this powerful book has recently come under fire, the project aims to deliver the book, whether in print or electronically, in the most powerful way — person to person.
Bradshaw testifies that it was this book that brought him into the truth of God’s Word and, thus, into the Seventh-day Adventist Church.
As a young boy, Bradshaw was raised to faithfully attend the Catholic church, even being an assistant to the priest during church services. “I loved my church and the people who attended,” he says. “I went to a parochial school, which, like the church, was very near where I lived. My family had been a fixture in the church and church school for decades.”
However, as he got older, he began to have questions about what he believed. “Complicating things was that we were taught not to question our faith, but to accept whatever we were taught. But my questions persisted.” He struggled with contradictory statements about what happens to someone after they die as he heard priests comfort the grieving by saying the deceased person was in heaven, but later commit their body to the grave until the resurrection. The contradictions puzzled him.
Later, he had questions about an eternally burning hell, praying to saints, purgatory and more. “It became harder and harder to accept what I had been taught as a child. But where else could I go? I was a Catholic. I tried attending several other churches, but wasn’t convinced they were much closer to the truth than what I already knew.”
Several years later, Bradshaw finally decided to read through The Great Controversy (the third copy he had been given but had yet to read). It was there that he found the Scriptural answers to the questions that had troubled him for so long. “I could barely put [the book] down. It seemed to explain history and prophecy in a profound yet straightforward way, and, unlike other religious books I had read, it didn’t seem to have too-neat answers for complicated questions. I knew I held in my hands a book unlike anything I had ever read.”
As Bradshaw realized the amazing truths he now possessed, he realized he would have to drastically change his life. Instead of denying God’s leading in his life, he says, “I bowed my head and prayed, telling God that I believed He had shown me the answers to many of my questions. I wanted to follow Jesus, and I invited him into my heart.”
Following in his brother’s footsteps, who had become a Seventh-day Adventist after discovering these same truths for himself, Bradshaw sought out the nearest Seventh-day Adventist Church. “I called the operator. 'May I have the phone number for the Seventh-day Adventist cathedral?' My journey with Jesus was beginning. It still continues today.”
Pastor John Bradshaw is one of the thousands whose lives have been transformed by The Great Controversy. And many hundreds of thousands, if not millions, more are waiting for someone to share these life-changing truths with them.
If you’d like to be personally involved in joining the Great Controversy Project 2.0 and sharing this impactful book with others, visit https://greatcontroversyproject.org. You can also visit the Project’s Facebook page or join the Telegram group.
You may also join upcoming mission trips to distribute hundreds of thousands of copies of The Great Controversy by visiting www.streamsoflight.net/usa-mission-trips/.
1 Ellen G. White, Letter 281, 1905