Catholicism vs. Seventh-Day Adventism: How are they different?

Being a born-again Christian, I frequently encounter inquiries from believers and non-believers regarding the distinctions between Catholicism and Seventh-Day Adventism, two prominent Christian denominations. As a result, our Bible study group recently embarked on a captivating exploration of these denominations to enhance our comprehension of their unique characteristics. We dedicated last Sunday’s gathering to a comprehensive study titled “Catholicism vs. Seventh Day Adventism. “How are they different?

Catholicism and Seventh-Day Adventism differ in several theological aspects. One is authority, where Catholicism recognizes the authority of the Pope, while Seventh-Day Adventism emphasizes the authority of Scripture alone and doesn’t attribute special divinity to any human leader. Another difference is that Catholicism observes Sunday as the day of worship. At the same time, Seventh-Day Adventism upholds Saturday as the biblical Sabbath and emphasizes its observance as a sign of loyalty to God. Finally, Catholicism embraces doctrines such as purgatory, the intercession of saints, and the immaculate conception of Mary. Seventh-Day Adventism, however, rejects these teachings, focusing on believing in the second coming of Christ, the investigative judgment, and the importance of a healthy lifestyle.

I invite you to join me as we delve into the nuances of Catholicism and Seventh-Day Adventism. Keep reading this post to learn the beliefs of these denominations, whether they have any similarities, and what they think of one another.

Catholicism vs. Seventh Day Adventism: Difference in definition

Catholicism vs. Seventh-Day Adventism - How are they different?
Catholicism vs. Seventh Day Adventism. Image source: Pixabay

Catholicism refers to the largest Christian denomination globally, led by the Pope, and centered on the teachings and traditions of the Roman Catholic Church. The term “Catholic” derives from the Greek word katholikos, meaning “universal.” Catholicism believes in the triune God—Father, Son (Jesus Christ), and Holy Spirit—and holds that Jesus established the Church on the Apostle Peter. It places a strong emphasis on the sacraments, liturgy, and the authority of the Pope. Catholicism also recognizes a hierarchical structure with bishops and priests, and it upholds various theological doctrines and practices, such as the veneration of saints.

Seventh-Day Adventism is a Protestant Christian denomination that emerged in the 19th century. It emphasizes the second coming of Jesus Christ and places a significant focus on biblical prophecy and the observance of the seventh-day Sabbath (Saturday) as a day of rest and worship. Seventh-Day Adventism recognizes the authority of Scripture alone and adhere to fundamental beliefs such as the divine inspiration of the Bible, the heavenly sanctuary, and the importance of healthy living. They also emphasize evangelism and hold a strong commitment to education and healthcare.

What’s the Difference between Catholicism and Seventh-Day Adventism?

Parameter of comparison


Seventh Day Adventism


Pope is the divine head of the Church.

Emphasis is on the authority of Scripture alone.

Sabbath Day

Sunday is observed as the day of worship.

Saturday is observed as the biblical Sabbath.

Views on Mary

Mary is exalted and worshiped as the Mother of God.

Honor is given to Mary, but not to the extent of veneration.

Views on end times

Emphasizes on the general resurrection and final judgment.

Emphasizes on the second coming of Christ and the millennial reign.

Worship practices

Include liturgical worship, sacraments, veneration of saints.

Emphasizes on biblical prophecy, evangelism, education, and healthcare.

Theological doctrines

Include purgatory, intercession of saints, immaculate conception of Mary.

Emphasizes on second coming, investigative judgment, and healthy living.

Differences in the beliefs between Catholicism and Seventh-Day Adventism

Catholicism vs. Seventh-Day Adventism
Beliefs between Catholicism and Seventh-Day Adventism. Image source: Pixabay

One difference in beliefs between Catholicism and Seventh-Day Adventism is in the attainment of salvation. Catholicism teaches that salvation is attained through faith, participation in the sacraments, and performing good works. In contrast, Seventh-Day Adventism emphasizes salvation by grace through faith alone, believing that a person is justified by faith in Jesus Christ.

Another difference is in the belief of end times. Catholicism teaches broadly about the end times, including the belief in a general resurrection and final judgment. They affirm the existence of heaven and hell, with the possibility of purgatory as a temporary state of purification. Seventh-Day Adventism places significant emphasis on the second coming of Christ and the imminent return of Jesus to establish His kingdom on Earth. They anticipate a literal thousand-year reign of Christ (millennialism) and the final eradication of sin.

The role of Mary also differs between these two denominations. Catholicism venerates Mary as the Mother of God, honoring her with titles like the “Blessed Virgin” and “Queen of Heaven.” They believe in her purity, her miraculous conception, and her assumption into heaven. In contrast, while Seventh-Day Adventists acknowledge and honor Mary’s role as the mother of Jesus, they don’t attribute the same level of veneration to her as in Catholicism. They emphasize Jesus as the only mediator between God and humanity.

Finally, Catholicism encourages the intercession of saints, believing that the faithful on Earth can seek the prayers and assistance of saints in heaven. They view saints as holy individuals who can intercede on behalf of believers. However, in Seventh-Day Adventism, there’s no practice of seeking intercession from saints. They believe in the priesthood of all believers, with direct access to God through Christ alone.

It’s important to note that individual beliefs may vary within these broad categories, and these descriptions provide a general overview of the differences in beliefs between Catholicism and Seventh-Day Adventism.

What are the similarities between Catholicism and Seventh-Day Adventism?

One of the similarities between Catholicism and Seventh-Day Adventism is that both identify as Christian denominations. They share a belief in Jesus Christ as the Son of God and the central figure of salvation.

Also, while they differ in their interpretations and emphasis, both Catholicism and Seventh-Day Adventism recognize the Bible as a foundational source of religious authority. They affirm the inspiration and authority of Scripture in matters of faith and practice.

Additionally, both denominations believe in the Trinity, affirming the belief in one God who exists as three distinct persons—Father, Son (Jesus Christ), and Holy Spirit.

Both Catholicism and Seventh Day Adventism have ritual practices as part of their worship. While the specific sacraments and rituals differ, both denominations place importance on baptism and the commemoration of the Lord’s Supper as acts of faith and obedience.

To add to that, both Catholicism and Seventh-Day Adventism uphold high moral and ethical standards in line with their understanding of biblical teachings. They emphasize the importance of ethical behavior, personal holiness, and a commitment to living a life in accordance with Christian principles. Finally, both denominations have a strong focus on evangelism and missionary work, seeking to spread their respective beliefs and values to others.

What do Catholics think of Seventh-Day Adventists?

The opinions of individual Catholics towards Seventh-Day Adventists varies significantly, as Catholicism comprises a diverse range of individuals with different perspectives. There’s no universal way of how all Catholics think of Seventh-Day Adventists. Some Catholics may have personal relationships or interactions with Seventh-Day Adventists that shape their opinions, while others may be less familiar with Adventist beliefs and practices. As with any religious group, it’s always best to approach individuals with openness, respect, and a willingness to engage in dialogue to understand their unique perspectives

However, generally speaking, Catholics recognize Seventh-Day Adventism as a Christian denomination and acknowledge their differences in Theology and practices. Catholics may also have reservations or concerns regarding Adventist teachings on topics such as Sabbath observance, the end times, and the role of Mary, and vice versa. Again, it’s essential to remember that individual perspectives within the Catholic community differ greatly, and there’s no one universal answer.

Can a Catholic Marry a Seventh-day Adventist?

Catholicism vs. Seventh-Day Adventism
Can a Catholic marry a Seventh-day adventist? Image source: Pixabay

Yes, it’s possible for a Catholic to marry a Seventh Day Adventist, but it’s important for the couple to consider certain factors and potential challenges that may arise due to differences in religious beliefs and practices. According to Catholic law, a Catholic individual seeking to marry someone from a non-Catholic Christian denomination, such as Seventh Day Adventism, generally requires permission from their local Catholic bishop, known as a “dispensation from canonical form.”

Also, the Catholic Church typically requires engaged couples to undergo pre-marital preparation or counseling, which may include discussions about faith, religious differences, and the implications of an interfaith marriage. This process aims to promote understanding, communication, and potential resolutions for challenges that may arise. Remember that each situation is unique, and it’s advisable for the couple to seek guidance from their respective religious leaders, such as a Catholic priest and a Seventh-Day Adventist pastor, to address specific concerns and ensure a well-informed decision is made.

Can a Catholic convert to Seventh-day Adventism?

Yes, a Catholic can convert to Seventh-Day Adventism. Conversion from one religious tradition to another is a personal decision based on individual beliefs and convictions, and the process can vary based on individual circumstances and the guidance of local Adventist leaders. It’s advisable for individuals considering conversion to engage in open and respectful dialogue with their current Catholic community and seek guidance from trusted spiritual advisors to ensure a well-informed decision is made.

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