(This is the incident referred to under point 2, on page 382.)
During 1893 and 1894 there was a maiden lady at Battle Creek by the name of Anna Phillips, sometimes called Anna “Rice-Phillips,” who claimed to have the gift of prophecy. She wrote her visions and sent them to the leading elders. Her claims were whispered around among some of the lay members, and naturally they caused concern and comments.
It was on a Sabbath morning in the middle of April, 1894, that Elder A. T. Jones in the Dime Tabernacle, which seated about four thousand people, presented Anna Phillips's testimonies as a genuine manifestation of the spirit of prophecy.
I will never forget the scene as he stood in the pulpit and read her testimonies. He spoke of the sheep following the True Shepherd, for “they know His voice.” John 10:4. Then he read some of Ellen White's testimonies, and said, “Do you hear the voice?” (He referred to the voice of God through the Holy Spirit.) “Yes,” said he, “we hear the voice.” Then he read some of Anna Phillips's testimonies and said, “Do you hear the voice?” “Yes,” he said, “it is the same voice.” He then argued the genuineness of Miss Phillips's testimonies simply because he could hear the voice, as he claimed. Some of the rest of us, for some reason, did not hear the voice.
When the meeting closed, the people quietly left the building; but instead of going to their homes, they gathered in groups and began to discuss the new prophetess. “Can it be so?” some said. Others said, “Do you think Elder Jones is right, or may he be mistaken?” “Will she and Sister White work together?” some inquired. “I should like to know what Sister
White has to say about it,” remarked others. Finally the crowd dispersed and went to their homes, musing on the way.
I was a young man attending Battle Creek College, and knew not what position to take. I had confidence in Elder Jones, yet I wanted more evidence of the genuineness of Anna Phillips's testimonies. The Sabbath was passing and the shades of another night drew on.
On Sunday morning I went to the Review and Herald office and purchased a postal card. I had just stepped to the writing board when Elder Jones came in.
“Any mail?” he inquired in his characteristic way. I watched, and saw a long envelope bearing the return address of “Mrs. E.G. White.” I was immediately interested, for I recalled his sermon the day before concerning Anna Phillips. I stood and closely watched him as he sat down on a bench and began to read. I saw that he was deeply affected, for tears began to flow freely. He read on.
Presently, Elder A. O. Tait came in, and Elder Jones said, “Oscar, come here. Sit down. You heard me preach that sermon yesterday?”
“Yes,” replied Elder Tait.
“Well, read this,” he said, as he handed him the testimony he had just received from Sister White.
Here is a part of what Elder Tait read:
“No. 3, George's Terrace,
“St. Kilda Rd.
“Melbourne, Vic., March 15, 1894.
“Elder A. T. Jones.
“I have a message for you. Did you suppose that God has commissioned you to take the burden of presenting the visions of Anna Phillips, reading them in public, and uniting them with the testimonies the Lord has been pleased to give me? No, the Lord has not laid upon you this burden. He has not given you this work to do….
“My dear brother, I wish to present before you some things concerning the dangers that threaten the work at the present time. The work of Anna Phillips does not bear the signature of heaven. I know what I am talking about….
“How is it, my brother, that you have taken up these communications, and presented them before the people, weaving them in with the testimonies God has given Sister White? Where is your evidence that these are of God? You cannot be too careful how you hear, how you receive, how you believe.”
“Who told Sister White a month ago,” said Elder Jones, “that I was going to preach that sermon about Anna Phillips as a prophetess?”
“Ah, you know, Alonzo,” declared Elder Tait, in his calm, yet firm, way.
“Yes, I do know. God knew what I would do, and He impressed Sister White a month before I preached the sermon to send the testimony that I am wrong. Look at that date, ‘March 15, 1894.’ I am wrong.” The two men left the post office.
The next Sabbath Elder Jones read part of the testimony sent him thirty days prior to the date he preached his sermon, mailed from Melbourne, Australia. It reproved him for his position taken concerning Anna Phillips's testimonies. He said, “I am wrong, and I confess it. Now I am right.” That ended the matter and saved the church from the pitfall of Satan.
Anna Phillips repudiated her experience and became a trusted Bible worker. She died a loyal Seventh-day Adventist.
—W. M. Adams (the young man in the post office).
(This is the incident referred to under point 4, on page 383.)
In the year 1890 general meetings were planned in the Atlantic Coast district of our work. It was before the days
of union conferences. Elder A. T. Robinson had the work in charge, and he invited Ellen White to be present at these general meetings, which were to be conducted over a period of about three months' time. The first of these was held late in October at South Lancaster, Massachusetts. From day to day Ellen White bore her testimony, and when the series of meetings was over she was weary, but she took the cars for Salamanca, New York, where the next meetings were to be held.
While on the cars she caught a severe cold. As she reached Salamanca and was taken to the Hicks home, where she was to stay as a guest, Ellen White recorded in her journal that never again must she attempt to attend meetings at this time of the year—it was not wise for one of her age to do so.
Miss Sara McEnterfer, her traveling companion and private secretary, was insisting that Mrs. White abandon her plans for the next two and a half months and go back to Battle Creek, where she could have proper treatment. But already announcement had been made of the meetings that would be held. A large Protestant church had been rented for the occasion, and our believers were coming in from southwestern New York State and northern Pennsylvania. Mrs. White determined to go forward with her appointments.
The first of these appointments was on Sabbath afternoon, and, although she was not well, she spoke to the people. The Sunday meeting was to be held in the opera house, for of course the church would be used by the congregation which owned it. It had been widely advertised that Mrs. White would speak. Although ill, she said she would go forward with the plans. But when Sunday morning came, she was not as well as she had been the day before. She could only speak in a whisper. From a human standpoint it seemed futile to attempt to hold such a meeting, especially with the general public. Nevertheless, Mrs. White assured the brethren that she would go forward with the appointment.
At an earlier time, on a similar occasion, she turned to her
husband and said, “James, if I could only know that God would sustain me.”
He asked, “Ellen, has the Lord ever failed you?”
She answered, “No.”
And he assuringly answered, “The Lord will not fail you.”
So on this day, stepping forward by faith, she went to the opera house that Sunday forenoon. The building was crowded. Ellen White was a good public speaker, and she stood before that audience and began to speak. At first she spoke in a whisper, but then her voice broke clear, and she addressed them for an hour on her favorite subject, “Christian Temperance.” She presented the broad aspects of the theme, carrying it right back to the tables in the homes of the people.
Monday, Ellen White was not as well as she had been the day before. But the announcement had been made that she would speak on Monday afternoon at the church. The meetings were to close on Monday night, so this would be the last time our people would hear her speak in this series. At the appointed time she was taken to the place of meeting and assisted to the pulpit. Then, supporting herself on the pulpit, she spoke to the congregation for about forty-five minutes. When she closed, the people crowded to the front to bid her farewell. They said, “Sister White, the Lord has given you a message for us this day.” But in her journal (and we have it in her own handwriting, written the next day) she said, “I do not know upon what I spoke. I do not know one word I uttered. I was too ill.”
In her weariness and her illness she made her way to the Hicks home and to her room, thinking to pour out her soul before God and to plead for mercy, strength, and health. She reached her room and dropped on her knees by her chair. She tells us: “I had not uttered a word when the whole room seemed filled with a soft silvery light and my pain of disappointment and discouragement was removed. I was filled with comfort and hope—the peace of Christ.”—Diary, Nov. 3, 1890.
She was given a vision. After the vision she cared not to sleep or rest. She was healed, she was rested, and as she lay on her cot that night, she thought of the words of Jacob of old, “Surely the Lord is in this place; and I knew it not.”
The next morning a decision must be given. Could she go on to Stanley, Virginia, where the next meetings were to be held, or must she go back to Battle Creek, as her nurse insisted? Elder A. T. Robinson, who had the work in charge, and Elder W. C. White, her son, called in the morning at her room to get her answer. They found her dressed and well. Of course she would go on. Then she told of the healing and of the vision. She said, in substance, “I want to tell you about what was revealed to me last night. For in the vision I seemed to be in Battle Creek, and the angel messenger bade me, ‘Follow me.’” Then she hesitated, for the scene had gone from her. She could not call it to mind.
The two men visited with her for a time, and then they left to arrange the transportation. As they were leaving, she said, in effect, “Just a minute. I want to tell you about the vision that was given to me last night. It had to do with important matters. In the vision I seemed to be in Battle Creek, and I was taken to the Review and Herald building, and the angel messenger bade me, ‘Follow me—.’” It was gone again, as verily as Nebuchadnezzar's dream was gone from him as he tried to call it to mind. She could not remember.
The men hurried on to arrange for the transportation. Ellen White, in good health, attended the meetings for the next two and a half months. She spent one day visiting the Luray Caverns. As she went through the caverns, she carried a tin can with three candles in it for light, and she did enjoy the day of sightseeing. I mention this, that you may know she was in good health, healed completely from her illness.
In the days that followed she recorded in her journal that which she was not allowed to tell the men that day in Salamanca. (We have the handwritten record in our vault.) Many
things were revealed to her. Here are a few sentences from her journal record concerning the American Sentinel. Now, the American Sentinel was to our work in the nineties what the Liberty magazine is today. It was a weekly journal, published by the Pacific Press in New York City, devoted largely to religious liberty interests. The journal records:
“In the night season I was present in several counsels, and there I heard words repeated by influential men to the effect that if the American Sentinel would drop the words ‘Seventh-day Adventist’ from its columns, and would say nothing about the Sabbath, the great men of the world would patronize it; it would become popular, and do a larger work. This looked very pleasing. But what is the nature of the work that would be done to meet the world's ideas? These men could not see why we could not affiliate with unbelievers and nonprofessors to make the American Sentinel a great success.”
“I saw their countenances brighten, and they began to work on a policy to make the Sentinel a popular success. The whole matter was introduced by men who needed the truth in the chambers of the mind and soul.
“This policy is the first step in a succession of wrong steps. The principles which have been advocated in the American Sentinel are the very sum and substance of the advocacy of the Sabbath, and when men begin to talk of changing their principles, they are doing a work which does not belong to them. Like Uzzah, they are attempting to steady the ark which belongs to God and is under His special supervision.”
You get the picture as she draws it. A group of men are discussing the editorial policy of one of our journals.
After finishing these general meetings, Ellen White returned to her home in Battle Creek and prepared for the General Conference, March 5-25, 1891. When the conference opened, she was asked to speak to the workers each morning in the week at half-past five. On Sabbath afternoon she addressed the conference. In the Battle Creek Tabernacle, before four thousand
of our workers and believers, she stood and read as her text, “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.” The discourse was a powerful appeal for Seventh-day Adventists to hold forth the distinctive features of their faith.
Then she said in substance, “While at Salamanca, New York, matters of importance were revealed to me. In a vision of the night I seemed to be here in Battle Creek, and the angel messenger bade me, ‘Follow me—.’” She hesitated; the scene was gone. She could not call it to mind. She continued to speak of how we must hold forth the distinctive features of our faith. Then she said, “I must tell you of the vision which was given to me at Salamanca; for in that vision important matters were revealed to me. In the vision I seemed to be in Battle Creek. I was taken to the Review and Herald office, and the angel messenger bade me, ‘Follow me—.’” Again she faltered; it had gone from her. She went on with her sermon, and a third time that afternoon she attempted to recount that vision, but she was not allowed to tell it. Finally she said, “Of this, I shall have more to say later.” She rounded out her sermon in about an hour's time, and the meeting was dismissed. Everyone had noticed that she was unable to call the vision to mind.
The president of the General Conference, Elder O. A. Olsen, came to her. “Sister White,” he said, “will you be with us in the morning?”
“No,” she replied, “I'm weary. I've borne my testimony. You must make other plans for the morning meeting.”
As Mrs. White returned to her home, she told the members of her family that she would not be attending the morning meeting. She was tired, and she was going to have a good night's rest.
That night, after the close of the conference session, a small group of men met in one of the offices in the Review and Herald building. At that meeting were representatives of the Pacific Press, who published the American Sentinel. There were
present also the representatives of the Religious Liberty Association. They met to discuss and settle a vexing question—the editorial policy of the American Sentinel. Someone locked the door, proposing that it should not be unlocked until the question was settled. Ten o'clock passed; eleven o'clock; twelve o'clock struck, and the men were still there;—one o'clock, and they had reached no decision; two o'clock, and the doors were still locked, and the men were not able to settle the matter.
A little before three o'clock on Sunday morning the meeting ended in a deadlock, with the assertion on the part of the Religious Liberty men, that unless the Pacific Press would accede to their demands and drop the term “Seventh-day Adventist” and “the Sabbath” from the columns of that paper, they would no longer use it as the organ of the Religious Liberty Association. That meant killing the paper. They unlocked the door, and the men went to their rooms to sleep.
But God, who never slumbers or sleeps, sent His angel messenger to Ellen White's room at three o'clock that morning. She was aroused from her sleep and instructed that she must go into the workers' meeting at half past five to present what was shown to her at Salamanca. She dressed, went to her bureau, took out the journal in which she had made the record of what had been shown to her. As the scene came clearly to her mind, she wrote more to go with it.
As the workers passed her home early Sunday morning, Elder W. C. White among others noticed there was a light in her room. “Strange,” he said to the man with whom he was walking, “mother was not planning to attend the meeting today. She seems to have changed her mind.” He stepped into the house to see what she was doing. He found her dressed and putting on her bonnet to go to meeting. She told her son that at three o'clock that morning she had been aroused from her sleep and instructed to go into the workers' meeting and present what was shown to her at Salamanca.
Elder White was keenly interested. Five times he had heard her begin to tell it, and five times she had been prevented.
The audience were arising from prayer as Mrs. White entered the rear door of the tabernacle, a bundle of manuscript under her arm. The president of the General Conference was the speaker, and he addressed her: “Sister White,” he said, “we are happy to see you. Do you have a message for us?”
“Indeed I do,” she said, and she stepped to the front. She began where she had left off the day before. She told the listeners that at three o'clock that morning she had been aroused from her sleep and instructed to go to the workers' meeting at half past five to present what had been shown to her at Salamanca, New York.
“In the vision,” she said, “I seemed to be in Battle Creek. I was taken to the Review and Herald office, and the angel messenger bade me, ‘Follow me.’ I was taken to a room where a group of men were earnestly discussing a matter. There was a zeal manifest, but not according to knowledge.” She told of how they were discussing the editorial policy of the American Sentinel, and she said, “I saw one of the men take a copy of the Sentinel, hold it high over his head, and say, ‘Unless these articles on the Sabbath and the second advent come out of this paper, we can no longer use it as the organ of the Religious Liberty Association.’” Ellen White spoke for an hour, describing that meeting which had been shown to her in vision months before, and giving counsel based upon that revelation. Then she sat down.
The president of the General Conference did not know what to say. He had not heard of any such meeting. However, he did not wait long for an explanation, for a man stood up in the back of the room and began to speak:
“I was in that meeting last night.”
“Last night!” Sister White remarked, “last night? I thought that meeting took place months ago when it was shown to me in vision.”
“I was in that meeting last night, and I am the man who made the remarks about the articles in the paper, holding it high over my head. I am sorry to say that I was on the wrong side; but I take this opportunity to place myself on the right side.” He sat down.
Another man stood to speak. He was the president of the Religious Liberty Association. Note his words: “I was in that meeting. Last night after the close of the Conference some of us met in my room in the Review office where we locked ourselves in and there took up and discussed the questions and the matter that has been presented to us this morning. We remained in that room until three o'clock this morning. If I should begin to give a description of what took place and the personal attitude of those in the room, I could not give it as exactly and as correctly as it has been given by Sister White. I now see that I was in error and that the position that I took was not correct. From the light that has been given this morning, I acknowledge that I was wrong.”
Other persons spoke that day. Every man who was in the meeting the night before stood and bore his testimony, saying that Ellen White had accurately described the meeting and the attitude of those in the room. Before the meeting closed, the Religious Liberty group were called together, and they quickly took action in harmony with the inspired counsel.
Now you may ask, Why was it that Ellen White was not allowed to give the vision when five times she tried to tell it? If she had told it, it would have been said that it was not true, for no such meeting had taken place. If the counsel which was sent out by her in her manuscripts, based upon this revelation, but not making mention of this particular view, had been followed, the meeting never would have been held. If, following that Sabbath afternoon when Ellen White tried to tell the vision and was three times prevented, the men had accepted her counsel to hold the light high, the meeting never would have been held.
But somehow the men thought they knew better. You know how it is—some say, “Well, perhaps Sister White did not understand,” or “We are living in a different day now,” or “That counsel applied years ago, but it doesn't fit now.” You know how we do at times, and so did they in 1891. Then God, in His own time and in His own way, made it clear that it was His work; He was guiding; He was guarding; He had His hand upon the wheel. Ellen White tells us God “has often permitted matters to come to a crisis, that His interference might become marked. Then He has made it manifest that there is a God in Israel.”—Testimonies, vol. 9, pp. 91, 92.
—Arthur L. White, Secretary, Ellen G. White Publications.
(This is the incident referred to under point 8, on page 385.)
It happened in New Zealand years ago. At the conference office we received a brief note from a faithful sister who for years had been an isolated Sabbathkeeper. She had been ill, and felt that she had not much longer to live. However, she made no plea for anyone to visit her to comfort or encourage her. The blessed hope to her was something real and substantial. What she asked was that for the sake of her neighbors and friends we would be sure that when she died one of our ministers would come to conduct the funeral service. She would see to it, she said, that when the end drew near one of the neighbors would send us word in time.
A few months later the telegram came. The sister was dying. We asked Pastor J. Hookings, who was then the conference Missionary Volunteer secretary, to go to her town.
Upon his arrival, Brother Hookings found that the dear sister had lapsed into unconsciousness. He was introduced to her physician, and as they sat quietly in a dimly lighted adjoining room, the doctor, who was quietly turning the pages of a book
he had taken from the table, said in an undertone to Brother Hookings, “These are wonderful books, Mr. Hookings.”
Brother Hookings assented to the remark, but was inclined to think that the doctor had perhaps mistaken the volume of the Testimonies for the Church for some other similarly bound volume. After a brief interval the doctor said again, “Mr. Hookings, I think these are very wonderful books.”
He spoke with such positiveness that Brother Hookings replied, “I agree with you, doctor. But may I ask, what do you know about them?”
The doctor said that over a period of months he had been visiting the home as the sister's physician. “Whenever I have had to wait awhile in this room,” he said, “I have taken the opportunity of reading in these red-covered volumes.”
He went on. “Mr. Hookings, I have a large library of my own, and I read a great deal. I have read much concerning Christianity and the Christian religion, for though I am a Roman Catholic I have been interested also in the writings of Protestant authors. I would like to say to you that in all my reading I have never found the gospel in so beautiful a setting as I find it in these books of yours. Tell me, Mr. Hookings, do your people believe the things that are written in these books? Do they live according to the wonderful instruction that is given here? I notice that the messages are called Testimonies for the Church. To me they seem to be so practical and at the same time so comprehensive. They deal with home problems and family life and business affairs, as well as with church relationships and missionary work. I want to ask you, Mr. Hookings, do your people live according to the instruction that is given here?”
Brother Hookings was impressed by the physician's earnest inquiry. He replied, “Doctor, we believe that this is indeed wonderful instruction, that it is given of the Lord to the church for these times. We teach it to our people, and we and they do try to order our lives according to it.”
The doctor answered, “I am so glad to hear that. I will tell you why I ask that question. You see, Mr. Hookings, I am getting on in years. Soon I will have to ask some younger man to take over my practice. As I have contemplated retirement, do you know I have felt that it would be a wonderful thing for a man in his declining years to be able to go and settle down in a community of Christian people who believe in the kind of Christianity that is taught in these books and who shape their lives accordingly. I can think of no outlook that would be more attractive, that would be likely to be more restful and satisfying. I feel that that is what I would like to do.”
—A. W. Cormack.
In listing all the Ellen White works, there are included some volumes in which there is more or less duplication of subject matter. For instance, in noting the Testimonies for the Church, volume 1 was published in 1885, but the content is a republication of Testimonies Nos. 1-14, which were first issued between 1855 and 1868.
Titles appearing in italics are out of print.
|1851||*A Sketch of the Christian Experience and Views of Ellen G. White||64|
|1854||*Supplement to the Christian Experience and Views of Ellen G. White||48|
|1855||*Testimony for the Church, No. 1||16|
|1856||*Testimony for the Church, No. 2||16|
|1857||*Testimony for the Church, No. 3||16|
|1857||*Testimony for the Church, No. 4||48|
|1858||†Spiritual Gifts, vol. 1||219|
|1859||*Testimony for the Church, No. 5||32|
|1860||†Spiritual Gifts, vol. 2||295|
|1861||*Testimony for the Church, No. 6||64|
|1862||*Testimony for the Church, No. 7||64|
|1862||*Testimony for the Church, No. 8||64|
|1863||*Testimony for the Church, No. 9||48|
|1864||*Testimony for the Church, No. 10||80|
|1864||Appeal to the Youth (95 pages, 40 of which were written by Ellen G. White)||40|
|1864||Appeal to Mothers||64|
|1864||†Spiritual Gifts, vol. 3 (Facts of Faith)||304|
|1864||†Spiritual Gifts, vol. 4 (Facts of Faith)||156|
|1865||How to Live (a series of six pamphlets bound together, containing in all 296 pages, 86 of which were written by Ellen G. White)||86|
|1867||*Testimony for the Church, No. 11||53|
|1867||*Testimony for the Church, No. 12||96|
|1867||*Testimony for the Church, No. 13||172|
|1868||*Testimony for the Church, No. 14||102|
|1868||*Testimony for the Church, No. 15||96|
|1868||*Testimony for the Church, No. 16||104|
|1869||*Testimony for the Church, No. 17||204|
|1870||*Testimony for the Church, No. 18||208|
|1870||Spirit of Prophecy, vol. 1||414|
|1870||*Testimony for the Church, No. 19||96|
|1871||*Testimony for the Church, No. 20||200|
|1872||*Testimony for the Church, No. 21||200|
|1872||*Testimony for the Church, No. 22||192|
|1873||*Testimony for the Church, No. 23||116|
|1875||*Testimony for the Church, No. 24||192|
|1875||*Testimony for the Church, No. 25||192|
|1876||*Testimony for the Church, No. 26||208|
|1876||*Testimony for the Church, No. 27||190|
|1877||Spirit of Prophecy, vol. 2||396|
|1878||Spirit of Prophecy, vol. 3||442|
|1879||*Testimony for the Church, No. 28||192|
|1880||*Testimony for the Church, No. 29||192|
|1880||Life Sketches of James White and Ellen G. White (450 pages, of which 221 were written by Ellen G. White)||221|
|1881||*Testimony for the Church, No. 30||192|
|1882||*Testimony for the Church, No. 31||244|
|1882||Early Writings (reprint of A Sketch of the Christian Experience and Views o[ Ellen G. White, 1851; A Supplement to Christian Experience and Views, 1854; and Spiritual Gifts, vol. 1, 1858)||284|
|1883||Sketches From the Life of Paul||334|
|1884||Spirit of Prophecy, vol. 4||492|
|1885||Testimonies for the Church, vols. 1-4 (current edition, reprint of Testimonies, Nos. 1-30)||2,655|
|1885||*Testimony for the Church, No. 32||238|
|1886||Historical Sketches of the Foreign Missions of the Seventh-day Adventists (294 pages, 120 of which were written by Ellen G. White)||120|
|1888||The Great Controversy Between Christ and Satan (enlargement of Spirit of Prophecy, vol. 4)||678|
|1889||*Testimony for the Church, No. 33||288|
|1889||Testimonies for the Church, vol. 5 (reprint of Nos. 31-33)||745|
|1890||Patriarchs and Prophets||755|
|1890||Christian Temperance (The second part of this book is entitled “Bible Hygiene,” and was compiled from the writings of James White. The entire book contains 268 pages.)||162|
|1892||Steps to Christ||153|
|1892||Gospel Workers (first edition)||471|
|1896||Thoughts From the Mount of Blessing||205|
|1896||Story of Jesus (originally called Christ Our Saviour)||183|
|1898||The Desire of Ages||835|
|1900||Christ's Object Lessons||421|
|1900||Testimonies on Sabbath School Work||122|
|1900||Testimonies for the Church, vol. 6 (No. 34)||482|
|1902||Testimonies for the Church, vol. 7 (No. 35)||298|
|1902||Manual for Canvassers||70|
|1904||Testimonies for the Church, vol. 8 (No. 36)||335|
|1905||The Ministry of Healing||516|
|1909||Testimonies for the Church, vol. 9 (No. 37)||288|
|1911||The Acts of the Apostles||602|
|1913||Counsels to Parents, Teachers, and Students Regarding Christian Education||556|
|1915||Gospel Workers (new and revised edition)||520|
|1915||Life Sketches of Ellen G. White (480 pages, 254 pages written by Ellen G. White)||254|
|1916||Prophets and Kings||733|
|1922||Christian Experience and Teachings of Ellen G. White||223|
|1923||Fundamentals of Christian Education||540|
|1923||Counsels on Health||634|
|1923||Testimonies to Ministers and Gospel Workers||520|
|1930||Messages to Young People||466|
|1933||Life and Teachings of Ellen, G. White||128|
|1937||The Sanctified Life (reprint of Bible Sanctification)||69|
|1938||Counsels on Diet and Foods||498|
|1938||Counsels on Sabbath School Work (a rearranged, enlarged edition of Testimonies on Sabbath School Work)||186|
|1940||Counsels on Stewardship||350|
|1946||Counsels to Writers and Editors||181|
|1947||The Story of Redemption||438|
|1949||Testimony Treasures, vols. 1-3||1,623|
|1950||The Remnant Church||72|
|1952||The Adventist Home||583|
|1952||My Life Today||377|
* Initial edition out of print, but available in other form.
† Recently reprinted with facsimile pages.
William E. Foy, a member of the Freewill Baptist Church, who was preparing for the ministry, was given two visions in Boston in 1842—one on January 18 and the other on February 4. In the first of these revelations, Foy viewed the glorious reward of the faithful and the punishment of sinners. Not being instructed to relate to others what was shown him, he told no one of his vision; but he had no peace of mind. In the second revelation he witnessed the multitudes of earth arraigned before heaven's bar of judgment; a “mighty angel” with silver trumpet in hand about to descend to earth by “three steps;” the books of record in heaven; the coming of Christ and the reward of the faithful. He was bidden, “Thou must reveal those things which thou hast seen, and also warn thy fellow creatures to flee from the wrath to come.”—The Christian Experience of Wm. E. Foy, Together With the Two Visions He Received (1845).
Two days after this revelation he was requested by the pastor of the Bloomfield Street church in Boston to relate the visions.
Although he was a fluent speaker, he reluctantly complied, fearing that the general prejudice against visions, and the fact that he was a mulatto, would make his work difficult. The “large congregation assembled” was spellbound, and with this initial encouragement, Foy traveled three months, delivering his message to “crowded houses.” Then to secure means to support his family, he left public work for a time, but, finding “no rest day nor night,” he took it up again. Ellen Harmon, when but a girl, heard him speak at Beethoven Hall in Portland, Maine. (Interview of D. E. Robinson with Mrs. E. G. White, 1912. White Publications, D.F. 231.)
Near the time of the expectation in 1844, according to J. N. Loughborough, Foy was given a third vision in which were presented three platforms, which he could not understand in the light of his belief in the imminent coming of Christ, and he ceased public work. (The Great Second Advent Movement, pages 146, 147.)
It so happened that a short time after this, Foy was present at a meeting in which Ellen Harmon related her first visions. She did not know that he was present until he interrupted with a shout, and exclaimed that it was just what he had seen. (D.F. 231.) Foy did not live long after this.
Near the time of the expected advent in the fall of 1844, there was also given to Hazen Foss, a young Adventist of talent, a revelation of the experience of the advent people. Shortly after the passing of the time, he was bidden to relate the vision to others, but this he was disinclined to do. He was warned of God as to the consequences of failing to relate to others what had been revealed to him, and was told that if he refused, the light would be given to someone else. But he felt very keenly the disappointment of 1844, and “said that he had been deceived.” After a severe mental conflict, he “decided he would not relate the visions.” Then, “very strange feelings came to him, and a
voice said, ‘You have grieved away the Spirit of the Lord.’”—E. G. White Letter 37, 1890.
“Horrified at his stubbornness and rebellion,” he “told the Lord that he would relate the vision,” but when he attempted to do so before a company of believers, he could not call it to mind. In vain were his attempts to call up the scenes as they had been shown to him; and then in deep despair he exclaimed, “It is gone from me; I can say nothing, and the Spirit of the Lord has left me.” Eyewitnesses described it as “the most terrible meeting they were ever in.”—Ibid.
Early in 1845, Foss overheard Ellen Harmon relate her first vision to the company of believers at Portland, Maine. He recognized her account as a description of what was shown to him. Upon meeting her the next morning, he recounted his experience, of which she had not before known, and encouraged her to faithfully perform her work, stating: “I believe the visions are taken from me and given to you. Do not refuse to obey God, for it will be at the peril of your soul. I am a lost man. You are chosen of God; be faithful in doing your work, and the crown I might have had, you will receive.”—Ibid. On comparing dates, they discovered that it was not until after he had been told that the visions were taken from him, that Ellen Harmon was given her first revelation. Although Hazen Foss lived till 1893, he never again manifested interest in matters religious. (Arthur L. White in Ellen G. White, Messenger to the Remnant, pages 29, 30.)
Here is Ellen White's description of Foss's experience:
“December 22, 1890.
“Dear Sister Mary Foss:
“I wrote to you a few days ago, and now another matter comes up. Elder Loughborough is writing me, asking if I know of any one now alive who was present at the meeting I have mentioned held at MacGuire's Hill, where I related the first visions I had.
“You know Hazen Foss had visions once. He was firm in the faith that Christ would come in 1844. He interpreted the visions given him in harmony with his belief that time would close in 1844. After the time passed, he was told by the Lord to relate the visions to others. But he was too proud spirited to do this. He had a severe conflict, and then decided he would not relate the visions. The people had assembled to hear him, but he refused.
“The first vision given to me while in Portland, Maine, was right after this decision. I had three visions, and was then bidden to relate these to others. At this time your husband, Mr. Foss, came to our house in Portland in a sleigh, and said that Mary was anxious that Ellen should visit her.
“I thought that this was an opening from the Lord. I was in feeble health; my lungs were diseased; I was spitting blood. But I decided to go with your husband. As I could not bear the cold air, I sat in the bottom of the sleigh, with the buffalo robe over my head.
“I had not spoken in a loud voice for some time. After I arrived at Poland, you said that there was to be a meeting at MacGuire's Hill, and asked me to go.
“I went with you and your husband. There, that night, I stood upon my feet to relate the testimony given me of God. For above five minutes I labored to speak, and then everything broke away, and my voice was as clear as a bell, I talked for about two hours. I knew nothing of the experience Hazen Foss had been passing through. In this meeting the power of the Lord came upon me and upon the people.
“The next day I had related to me the exercises of Hazen Foss. I was told by one, in the presence of a room full, that they had urged Hazen Foss to tell them the things which the Lord had shown him. He had been greatly disappointed that the Lord did not come in '44. He said that he had been deceived, and he refused to obey the promptings of the Spirit of God. After having plainly declared that he would not go from place
to place and relate the visions God had given him, very strange feelings came to him, and a voice said, ‘You have grieved away the Spirit of the Lord.’
“He was horrified at his stubbornness and rebellion, and told the Lord that he would relate the vision. The Lord had told him that if he refused, He would give the light to someone else, and when he attempted to relate the vision, his mind could not grasp it. He tried and tried to relate it, but he said, ‘It is gone from me; I can say nothing, and the Spirit of the Lord has left me.’ Those who gave a description of that meeting said it was the most terrible meeting they were ever in.
“The next morning, I met Hazen Foss. Said he, ‘Ellen, I want to speak with you. The Lord gave me a message to bear to His people, and I refused after being told the consequences. I was proud; I was unreconciled to the disappointment. I murmured against God, and wished myself dead. Then I felt a strange feeling come over me. I shall be henceforth as one dead to spiritual things. I heard you talk last night. I believe the visions are taken from me, and given to you. Do not refuse to obey God, for it will be at the peril of your soul. I am a lost man. You are chosen of God; be faithful in doing your work, and the crown I might have had, you will receive.’
“He looked as I never saw him look before, so full of despair. Now, Mary, you were at the meeting, were you not? Your memory is so good. Do you have any remembrance of this? If so, state on paper what you do know in regard to it.
“I have spoken three times in this place, and will return from here to my home in Battle Creek, having been away three months, laboring constantly from place to place. I speak here four times more, then returning home.
“Will you please answer this? My address is Battle Creek, Michigan.
(Signed) “Ellen G. White.
“Please send me Hazen Foss's address.”
—E. G. White Letter 37, 1890.
In the preface to Christian Temperance, by Ellen G. White, Dr. Kellogg wrote in 1890:
“Nearly thirty years ago there appeared in print the first of a series of remarkable and important articles on the subject of health, by Mrs. E. G. White. These articles at once commanded earnest consideration by those who were acquainted with Mrs. White's previous writings and labors. Thousands were led to change lifelong habits, and to renounce practices thoroughly fixed by heredity as well as by long indulgence. So great a revolution could not be wrought in a body of people without the aid of some powerful incentive, which in this case was undoubtedly the belief that the writings referred to not only bore the stamp of truth, but were endorsed as such by a higher than human authority. This is not the proper place for the consideration of the grounds upon which this belief was based, but the reader's attention is invited to a few facts of interest in this connection:
“1. At the time the writings referred to first appeared, the subject of health was almost wholly ignored, not only by the people to whom they were addressed, but by the world at large.
“2. The few advocating the necessity of a reform in physical habits, propagated, in connection with the advocacy of genuine reformatory principles, the most patent and in some instances disgusting errors.
“3. Nowhere, and by no one, was there presented a ystematic and harmonious body of hygienic truths, free from patent errors, and consistent with the Bible and the principles of the Christian religion.
“Under these circumstances, the writings referred to made their appearance. The principles taught were not enforced by
scientific authority, but were presented in a simple, straightforward manner by one who makes no pretense to scientific knowledge, but claims to write by the aid and authority of the divine enlightenment.
“How have the principles presented under such peculiar circumstances and with such remarkable claims stood the test of time and experience? is a question which may very properly be asked. Its answer is to be found in facts which are capable of the amplest verification. The principles presented have been put to the test of practical experience by thousands; and whenever intelligently and consistently carried out, the result has been found in the highest degree satisfactory. Thousands have testified to physical, mental, and moral benefits received. Many of the principles taught have come to be so generally adopted and practiced that they are no longer recognized as reforms, and may, in fact, be regarded as prevalent customs among the more intelligent classes. The principles which a quarter of a century ago were either entirely ignored or made the butt of ridicule, have quietly won their way into public confidence and esteem, until the world has quite forgotten that they have not always been thus accepted. New discoveries in science and new interpretations of old facts have continually added confirmatory evidence, until at the present time every one of the principles advocated more than a quarter of a century ago is fortified in the strongest possible manner by scientific evidence.”
Dr. David Paulson reported (circa 1913) a conversation with Dr. Kellogg, as follows:
“Dr. Kellogg asked me in New York City twenty-two years ago if I knew how it was that the Battle Creek Sanitarium was able to keep five years ahead of the medical profession. I did not know. Then he told me.
“He said when a new thing is brought out in the medical world he knew from his knowledge of the spirit of prophecy whether it belonged in our system or not. If it did, he instantly adopted it and advertised it while the rest of the doctors were
slowly feeling their way, and when they finally adopted it he had five years the start of them.
“On the other hand when the medical profession were swept off their feet by some new fad, if it did not fit the light we had received he simply did not touch it. When the doctors finally discovered their mistake they wondered how it came that Dr. Kellogg did not get caught.” (E. G. White Publications Document File 45.)
On December 2, 1900, Dr. Kellogg wrote to Mrs. White:
“There is no place in the world where you would receive a more hearty welcome than at the Battle Creek Sanitarium and no place where your work is more appreciated. Your writings have been used as textbooks in our classes here for years and the family has received, every Sabbath morning at eight o'clock, special instruction from the Testimonies. This is the custom every Sabbath morning and has been for the last four years. There is always a good turnout. Miss Parkinson who has charge of our little children here was telling me this morning how much impressed they were with the instruction she is giving them. She reads them some passages from Early Writings every morning and talks about you and your work, and they are wonderfully interested and anxious to see you.” J. H. Kellogg correspondence, Ellen G. White Publications vault.
Early in 1903 Dr. Kellogg in a letter to Ellen G. White included the following paragraph:
“I wish to say here and to put it in writing over my signature so that you may have it to make any use of that you may feel that circumstances require, that I have the utmost confidence in your sincerity as a Christian woman: and more than that, that I still believe as I formerly believed and as I have believed for more than thirty-five years that the Lord has made you the leader of the great movement for the promulgation of truth which Seventh-day Adventists are carrying forward, has made you the channel of truth for this people, and has given you special wisdom for instruction and reproof such as none others
have. I know that this instruction and the special light which the Lord has given you has been like a pillar of fire by night and a pillar of cloud by day to this people, and has been especially so to the particular department of the work in which I have been engaged.” (E. G. White Publications Document File 45-h.)