Superstition and theological mistakes are slow in dying, because there is generally someone ready to stand up and defend the originator even when he is defeated. In this case the instrument was a young girl, Miss Ellen Harmon, now Mrs. Ellen G. White. Because she has with her visions and hallucinations misled these people she is the principal cause of their numerous mistakes. She has published several books, some of them good. But when it comes to interpretation of the prophecies, their special message to the world, there is no end to her superstition and follies. As she has played the most important part in the propaganda, we will have occasion to refer to her frequently in this book. We will begin with a short biography of this remarkable woman.
Mrs. Ellen G. White was born in Gorham, Maine, Nov. 26, 1827. Her parents moved later to Portland, where they were members of the Methodist Church. At the age of nine she met with an accident in which she suffered the fracture of the nasal bone, preventing her breathing through the nostrils for a couple of years.
Depressed at heart on account of this calamity it seemed impossible for her to continue her studies, and she attended school but little. Her nervous system was so weak, that the hand trembled when she was writing and while reading her forehead was dampened by perspiration. Following the advice of her physician she stayed out of school for two years. After taking up studies again her condition grew worse; so she was compelled to leave school at the age of twelve.
This is a condensed story of her life, taken from the book "Early Writings," given under the heading "My Youth."
In March, 1840, W. Miller made his first visit to Portland, Me., and delivered lectures on the prophecies, that Jesus was coming again to the earth A.D. 1843. His statements found a fruitful soil in her heart, and although her experience of conversion was fluctuating up and down she finally believed that her sins were pardoned. But this excellent experience did not last long before she fell in despair again.
While in this despondent condition she had a dream, in which she saw a temple. Those who sought protection there were saved. She entered the temple, but was seized with fear and shame over the fact that she had to humble herself before the people who were there. When she awoke she thought that the Spirit of God had departed from her, never to return again.
When Miller preached that the Lord should return in 1844, she says,
"Miller gave a careful and convincing exposition of the prophecies. The year 1842 Miller came to Portland again. Several of the ministers of the city pointed out Miller's heresy, but he brought out so clear and convincing truths and supported his statements with biblical arguments, and an irresistible power accompanied the word, so many received the impression that he presented the truth."
Now let us reason a little. Miller came to Portland in 1840 and in 1842. Mrs. White was born 1827, therefore she was thirteen and fifteen years old when she heard these sermons. We ask, How much does a thirteen or fifteen-year old girl know of the prophecies of Daniel, when the Adventists after sixty-eight years of meditation do not understand them in spite of the fact that they have several learned men among them? And besides the Adventists, there are many scholars who admit that they stand baffled before many of their hidden meanings.
In order to understand Daniel's book it is necessary to be thoroughly familiar with the history of the Bible lands and understand the chronology of this writer. Lacking in these qualifications no one will understand him. It is already clear to the reader that Miller did not have enough knowledge, — and Mrs. White much less, — a frail girl who had left the school at the age of twelve.
Miller believed without a reasonable foundation; the Adventists have believed Miller and Mrs. White without investigating their foundation.
Miller's doctrine that Christ was to return to the earth in 1843 or 1844 proved to be a miserable failure, and it is evidence enough that Miller did not know his subject and had no convincing truth or power in his message. But he was sincere, and admitted his failure as an interpreter of the oracles of God. If his followers were as sincere as he, their prophetic message would cease in a month. Miller had none to show him what his mistake was; now there are many who are able and willing to do it.
When Miller was forced by the calendar, to give up his belief Mrs. White took up his mantle. She knew it was right because it corresponded with the Bible, with this difference only that it was the sanctuary in heaven which should be cleansed. Miller did not understand that, she says in her book "Early Writings." My edition was published in 1885. She was then fifty-eight years old and should have known better than to insist that God had sent Miller. Let the Scripture decide the issue. "When a prophet speaketh in the name of Jehovah, if the thing follow not, nor come to pass, that is the thing which Jehovah hath not spoken" (Deut. 18:22).
The thing which Miller prophesied did not come to pass, therefore the message was not from Jehovah. If his hearers have no judgment, and the speaker enjoys the confidence of the public, everything he says is right. If he then can show that the Bible approves of his statements, he must be all right. But who cannot find support in the Bible for his opinions, no matter how inconsistent and impossible?
"We must resemble Christ in all," a man said to me once. I told him that is impossible and is not God's meaning either. The man was shocked. I said that if we should be as poor as he was we would freeze to death. "And you are not like Christ in everything," I added. "Yes, I am," was his reply. "But Christ was not married; you have both a wife and children," I answered. The fact of the matter is that we should be like Christ in all principles of righteousness.
A person once asked one of Dr. Dowie's preachers, why the doctor traveled in such elegant style in Chicago. Is that to be like Christ? The minister answered, "Have you not read that he became poor in order to make us rich?"
A man whom I know very well told me one day that he had heard a powerful sermon on a certain subject, when the speaker had proved with the Bible everything he said. One or two weeks after he heard another speaker on the same subject who spoke absolutely against the conclusions of the former. Then he said to me that he had seen the latter speaker many times filled with God's Spirit, but not to the same extent as this time, and proved all that he said with the Scripture.
What was the cause of the ridiculous and contradictory statements of this man? He had not a particle of judgment, and I am sorry to say he is in a numerous company. The truth in the matter is this, the former speaker preached what he thought without any real knowledge, and the latter said what he knew. I heard his sermon and know that it would have been hard to disprove his arguments.
I have just finished a book, "Early Writings," by Mrs. White, which contains more superstition and fanaticism than I formerly would credit her with. Either one must leave Mrs. White and her experience or the Bible; it is impossible to hold both. "Early Writings" contains 295 pages. She says 351 times what she has seen, what God has shown to her. Her imagination is extremely productive. She mentions Satan 269 times, and what he has said and done. It is hard to understand that the Adventists try to defend her peculiar views in general, but it is incomprehensible that they really try to stand by her, even when her visions run in opposition to God's word.
Referring to W. Miller she says, "God directed the mind of Miller to the prophecies, and gave him great light upon the book of Revelation . . . and in the power of the Holy Spirit he opened the prophecies." "Early Writings", page 231.
"Angels of God accompanied Wm. Miller in his mission. He was firm and undaunted, fearlessly proclaiming the message committed to his trust. I saw that God was in the proclamation, of the time in 1843." Page 231. Miller's message was that Christ was to return 1843.
This she calls the message of the first angel. But the message of the first angel in Rev. 14, 7 reads, "Fear God, and give glory to him; for the hour of his judgment is come," and worship him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters." This verse does not say that Jesus should come, but Jesus says himself that the hour for the judgment of God had come (about A. D. 90). Therefore it is clear, that the judgment Jesus speaks of had already come. This is the judgment, that the light has come, not shall come in the future. Afterwards Jesus warns against false worship. God sends no angels with him who goes out to preach error.
Did Mrs. White see that God was in the movement of 1843? We dare not make such accusations against the Lord. If God had given to Miller a special message and sent angels with him, he would not have preached the way he did.
How could she see that the Lord was in the movement of 1843? She had not had any vision yet. The first vision came 1845. ("Early Writings", page 13). And "in this she sees that she is going to live until Christ's second coming; because on page 17 she says, "We all went under the tree, and sat down to look at the glory of the place, when Brethren Fitch and Stockman, who had preached the Gospel of the Kingdom, and whom God had laid in the grave to save them, came up to us and asked us what we had passed through while they were sleeping."
What she writes on pages 13-17 shows, that Jesus came and brought his people to the new earth, and that she was included without having to lie in the dust. Mrs. White is now past 85 years of age; but if she dies before Jesus comes, are the Adventists then willing to admit, that her first vision was a mistake?
Again she says,
"Some left their field to sound the message, while others were called from their shops and their merchandise. And even some professional men were compelled to leave their profession's to engage in the unpopular work of giving the first angel's message. Thousands were led to embrace the truth preached by Wm. Miller, and servants of God were raised up in the Spirit and power of Elijah to proclaim the message." ("Early Writings," pages 232, 233)
No one called them to leave their occupations to go out and preach errors. They went owing to their deplorable ignorance and their superstitious beliefs. Can a preacher proclaim false doctrines in the Spirit and power of Elijah. It only seems so to those, who are ignorant in the Scripture and are lacking in the Spirit of Christ.
"But these (false) shepherds stepped in between the truth and the people, and preached smooth things to lead them from the truth. They united with Satan and his angels, crying 'Peace, peace' when there was no peace." — "Ministers who would not accept this loving message themselves hindered those who would have received it. The blood of souls is upon them. Preachers and people joined to oppose this' message from heaven." — "The most devoted gladly received this message. They knew that it was from God, and that it was delivered at the right time. Angels were watching with deepest interest the result of the heavenly message, and when the churches turned from and rejected it they in sadness consulted with Jesus. He turned his face from the churches, and bade his angels faithfully watch over the precious ones who did not reject the testimony, for another light was yet to shine upon them." Pages 234, 235.
If the preachers never before had done their duty, they did it now. Because the message was not from heaven. The ignorant who accepted it thought it was from God, but they believed without knowledge. Neither was it timely. The angels did not expect with interest to see errors. When the congregation turned away, they did their duty. And the Lord Jesus does not turn his face away from a congregation which refuses to accept foolish doctrines.
"I saw," she says again, "the people of God joyful in expectation, looking for their Lord. But God designed to prove them. His hand covered a mistake in the reckoning of prophetic time." (Same page).
Miller had now preached the message of God from heaven during ten years. The angels of the Lord accompanied him on his mission, she says. The message was that Jesus should appear again on earth 1843. The time passed, and so they were forced against their asserted proofs from the Bible and history to admit that they were mistaken.
"Jesus and all the heavenly host looked with sympathy and love upon those who had with sweet expectation longed to see him whom their souls loved. Angels were hovering around them, to sustain them in the hour of their trial. Those who had neglected to receive the heavenly message were left in darkness, and God's anger was kindled against them, because they would not receive the light which he had sent them from heaven. Those faithful, disappointed ones, who could not understand why their Lord did not come, were not left in darkness. The hand of the Lord was removed from the figures, and the mistake was explained. They saw that the prophetic periods reached to 1844.God designed to disappoint them." (Page 236.)
Thus the mistake that led to their disappointment was with God. Miller had in all his sincerity preached the message of God for a number of years. Faithful believers had believed and followed him. But God had hidden the figures with his hand, so it was impossible for anyone to find the truth, before God removed his hand. First to send a message and then cover it with his hand, that none could see it for a period of ten years, afterwards showing his wrath upon those who did not believe, this kind of reasoning is enough to make God a veritable arch hypocrite. To those who believed in God's strange dealings, though disappointed, God sent his angels to comfort them. That was indeed not too much, when he himself was made the cause of their sorrow. But is this good logic?
In "The Great Controversy Between Christ and Satan" we read, God in his providence ordered it so, that this message was coupled with the message of the second angel and added to its force.
And in "Early Writings", page 237, she says,
"As the churches refused to receive the first angel's message, they rejected the light from heaven, and fell from the favor of God. They trusted to their own strength, and by opposing the first message placed themselves where they could not see the light of the second angel's message. But the beloved of God, who were oppressed, accepted the message, 'Babylon is fallen,' and left the churches."
The message of the second angel is found in Rev. 14:8, "Babylon is fallen, is fallen, that great city, because she made all nations drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication."
In "The Great Controversy" we are told, that since it was found that 1844 was the correct time when Jesus should come again and the believers were not permitted to bear testimony to this new discovery in the churches, the followers of Miller could no longer look upon them as Christian congregations. Therefore about 50,000 left the churches in the summer, 1844.
It is not at all surprising that these fanatics were silenced, in the churches. Their testimony was of course that Christ was going to return this time 1844. This the churches refused to believe, and their opinion was the correct one, whereas the Adventists who left were disappointed again.
No congregation becomes a Babylon because it refuses to accept a false message. On the contrary it becomes such by accepting it.
As the Saviour did not come in 1843 some Adventists began to doubt their whole system. In "The Great Controversy" Mrs. White has written a chapter under the heading "Prophecies fulfilled," in which she lets us understand that the parable of the Ten Virgins was fulfilled between 1843-1844 (Matt. 25). This the Adventists believe and preach to this day. One of their preachers who worked among them for some time chose this parable as text for a discourse in Chicago. But he did not agree with Mrs. White on this point. I remember clearly how the hearers signified their disapproval and afterwards accused him of heresy. God afterwards showed him that their views on the prophecies also were in contrast with God's word, so he took courage and found his way out of this place of torment.
Unmistakable signs indicated that the coming of the Lord was nigh.
"The coming of the Lord as announced by the first angel's message, was understood to be represented by the coming of the bridegroom. The widespread reformation under the proclamation of his soon coming, answered to the going forth of the virgins." ("The Great Controversy," page 393.)
"William Miller had no sympathy with those influences that lead to fanaticism. He declared with Luther, that every Spirit should be tested by the word of God. 'The devil,' said. Miller, 'has great power over the minds of some at the present day. There are many spirits gone out into the world; and we are commanded to try the spirits. The spirit of error will lead us from the truth.'" ("The Great Controversy," pages 396, 397.)
"While the bridegroom tarried, they all slumbered and slept. And at midnight there was a cry made, 'Behold, the bridegroom; go ye out to meet him.' Then all those virgins arose, and trimmed their lamps. In the summer oŁ 1844, midway, between the time when it had been first thought that the 2,300 days would end, and the autumn of the same year, to which it was afterward found that they extended, the message was proclaimed, in the very words of Scripture, 'Behold, the Bridegroom cometh.'"
"This work was not founded on human wisdom and learning but upon the power of God. It had a persuasive power, and the 'midnight cry' was proclaimed by thousands of believers."
"In like manner, Miller and his associates fulfilled prophecy and gave a message which inspiration had foretold should be given to the world, but which they could not have given had they fully understood the prophecies pointing out their disappointment, and presenting another message to be preached to all nations before the Lord should come. The first and second angel's messages were given at the right time, and accomplished the work which God designed to accomplish by them." Pages 398-405.
"An exceedingly bright and glorious light shone around those who had cherished the light which had been imparted to them. Their faces shone with excellent glory, and they unite with the angels in the cry, "Behold, the Bridegroom- cometh!" ("Early Writings", page 242.)
From these extracts of her writings we learn, that she taught, that the parable of the ten virgins in Matt. 25 was fulfilled. They were not mistaken in regard to the signs. Miller had no sympathy with fanaticism. She was convinced that Miller was led by the Spirit of truth, that the power of God accompanied the message. But as it appears from her interpretation, as though it was necessary for God to send Miller first with an erroneous message in order to get in another which possibly might be true. Near the end of the message of the second angel the poor woman has wrought herself up to such a certainty that she heard angels crying, "the Bridegroom cometh!"
We have not yet come to the end of 1844, and she has already said a dozen times at least, "I saw," "God has shown me" etc. But all her visions came since the time was passed. The first vision she had, according to her own statement, was 1845. It had reference to the future.
It is most likely that she had brooded over these things which had passed, and so she began to believe that what she thought about them came directly from the Lord. But this is in plain English self-deception.
With reference to the ten virgins in Matt. 25, we know with certainty,
God held his hand over the figure 1843 in order to conceal an error; but then he removed his hand and they saw immediately where the mistake was. Jesus was not going to return to the earth before October 22, 1844. Now they were sure, no possibility of a mistake now, because the word of God could not fail. The word did not fail either, but it was Miller's false chronology and Mrs. White's visions that failed and are a failure to this day.
October 22, 1844, passed by the same way as other days, and another mistake was discovered: Jesus did not come. Their troubles increased and the jeering of the multitude was more pronounced than they had anticipated. Some became so offended on account of this defeat that they wished they could disappear from earth. Miller and others abandoned their peculiar notions, while others planned for an honorable retreat by new speculations.
The principal error in their doctrinal system is that the 2,300 days in Dan. 8:14 are thought to be so many years, beginning in 457 B.C. and ending in A.D. 1844. This view they retained as correct. When Jesus did not come to cleanse the earth, which they thought was the sanctuary, they hit upon the idea that he went into the holiest of all, accomplishing there the same work for his people which the high priest did in the Jewish sanctuary once a year. There Jesus has been officiating ever since, viz. 68 years. The period has been called "The Investigative Judgment."
The two greatest and most glaring mistakes they made in connection with Jesus' change from the holy to the holy of holies were, that Jesus had a marriage feast, when the parable of the ten virgins was fulfilled and that the door of grace was closed. When a whole denomination, as well as an individual, use subterfuges and falsify the meaning of their own writings, we can no longer consider them as honest men and women.
Mrs. White says,
"Jesus sent his angels to direct the minds of his disappointed ones to the most holy place, where he had gone to cleanse the sanctuary and make a special atonement for Israel. Jesus told the angels that all who found him would understand the work which he was to perform. I saw that while Jesus was in the most holy place He would be married to the New Jerusalem; and after his work should be accomplished in the holiest, He would descend to the earth in Kingly power." ("Early Writings", page 251.)
The marriage represents the reception by Christ of his Kingdom. The holy city, the new Jerusalem, which is the capital and representative of the Kingdom, is called "the bride, the Lamb's wife." Said the angel to John, "Come hither, I will show thee the bride, the Lamb's wife." "He carried me away in the Spirit," says the prophet, "and showed me that great city, the holy Jerusalem descending out of heaven from God." (Rev. 21:9, 10.) Clearly then the bride represented the holy city, and the virgins that go out to meet the bridegroom are the symbols of the church. ("The Great Controversy," page 426.)
"I was shown what did take place in heaven at the close of the prophetic periods in 1844. As Jesus ended his ministration in the holy place, and closed the door of that apartment, a great darkness settled upon those who had heard and rejected the messages of His coming, and they lost sight of Him. Jesus then clothed Himself with precious garments. Around the bottom of His robe was a bell and a pomegranate. A breastplate of curious work was suspended from His shoulders. As He moved, this glittered like diamonds, magnifying letters which looked like names written or engraved upon the breastplate. Upon His head was something which had the appearance of a crown. When fully attired, He was surrounded by angels, and in a flaming chariot He passed within 'the second veil. ("Early Writings", page 251.)
"At the appointed time the Bridegroom came, not to the earth, as the people expected, but to the Ancient of days in Heaven, to the marriage, the reception of His Kingdom. 'They that were ready went in with Him to the marriage, and the door was shut.' They were not to be present in person at the marriage ; for it takes place in Heaven, while they are upon the earth." (The Great Controversy", page 427.)
"Those who rejected the first message could not be benefited by the second; neither were they benefited by the midnight cry, which was to prepare them to enter with Jesus by faith into the most holy place of the heavenly sanctuary. And by rejecting the two former messages, they have so darkened their understanding that they can see no light in the third angel's message, which shows the way into the most holy place." ("Early Writings," page 260.)
"I do not give expression to my own thoughts in the papers; it is what God has revealed to me in visions, a wonderful light from the throne of God." (Test. 31, pages, 63.)
"The instruction I have given you in writing and speech has been the light God has given me." (Test. No. 33, page 219.)
"In past times God spoke to men through the mouth of the prophets and the apostles ; in these days he has spoken to them through the testimony of the Spirit." (Test. No. 33, page 189.)
"I took the holy Bible and surrounded it with the various testimonies to the church." (Test. Vol. 2, page 605.)
"It is scarcely possible for people to commit a greater sin before God than rejecting and despising the means (her testimonies) which God has appointed for their guidance." (Page 208.)
"The testimonies were not written to produce a new light, but God simplified by them the great truths that already were given." (Test. No. 33, page 193.)
From the foregoing it is clear that Jesus had a marriage in heaven 68 years ago and received his Kingdom. The bride was the city. Only those who believed in Mrs. White's visions, that he rode into the most holy place in 'a carriage, could understand his work there. Now they were with him in faith. But the worst of it is, that they had no faith in or understanding of this doctrine, when Jesus had his marriage — this faith they received five years later (1849).
Alas, what a miserable marriage Jesus must have had in 1844! Only a few poor, misinformed Adventists who went around on earth despondent over their defeat had a marriage in heaven, five years before they found it out from Mrs. White. If a marriage feast is celebrated somewhere and a person is invited, but cannot attend in person, he can at least think of the marriage when it is going on; but to believe he was present in faith five years before he knew anything about it, is unreasonable. Those who died between 1844 and 1849 did not find out that they were present in faith even. According to my view of the matter a guest may be present in faith, but the bride must surely be there in person.
Nothing less would satisfy me at my wedding, I wanted above everything else to see my bride there; and the Adventists would not be satisfied with anything less. I am sure of that.
To attend a wedding in faith is fanaticism of the highest order. Adventists, how can you accept such doctrines?
Of course, we read in Rev. 21:9,10, that the bride is called the Lamb's wife, and that the new Jerusalem was shown to him; but we must look into this matter and try to find, if it is meant that Jesus had no other bride and if Jerusalem is the bride. The time was 1844.
Rev. 21:2, "And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God, out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband."
We see here that it does not say Jerusalem was the bride, but the city was prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.
In Rev. 19:6-9, we read first, "The Lord God omnipotent reigneth. Let us be glad and rejoice and give honor to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife has made herself ready. And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white; for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints." The city is not "her." In verse 9 we read, "Blessed are they which are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb." A city can neither be invited to a meal or eat. This interpretation seems to be the correct one. Some may answer, "If the people are the bride, who are then the guests? The present inhabitants of heaven may fill this requirement, if there necessarily must be any. It is possible to have a marriage without guests, but not without a bride.
Dear reader, may the Lord lead us so that we may become partakers of his glory. And God knows, that I do not wish to see a single Adventist excluded from this blessing.
That Jesus changed a place or room in the year 1844 is contrary to the teaching of the Bible, and if this view is wrong the whole Adventist structure crumbles to dust. When we are going to study the nature of their foundation, it will be shown that the building is tottering before the unchangeable facts of prophecy, but I must touch upon the subject even here.
Mrs. White says in "The Great Controversy," pages 420, 421, "After ascension, our Saviour began his work as our high priest. Says Paul, Christ is not entered into the holy places made with hands, which are the figures of the true; but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us." (Heb. 9:24.) Thither the faith of Christ's disciples followed him as he ascended from their sight. Here their hopes centered, "which hope we have," said Paul, "as an anchor of the soul, both sure and steadfast, and which entereth into that within the veil ; whither the forerunner is for us entered, even Jesus, made an high priest forever." "Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us." (Heb. 6:19,20; 9:12.)
Here she uses the Bible correctly, and we are not inclined to attack a person, where he is right. But then she continues "For eighteen centuries this work of ministration continued in the first apartment of the sanctuary."
Let us call a halt here. The exegesis is getting crooked again. If her testimony is written, "not to produce new light, but to hold fast the true word," then we have a perfect right to ask, "Where is it written in the Scripture, that Jesus has been in the first apartment and ministered for us?" "Now of which things we have spoken this is the sum; We have such an high priest, who is set on the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens" etc.
Does the reader believe, that the throne of the Majesty was in the holy place? Jesus entered after his ascension within the veil and became our high priest. And there is no support to the theory, that Jesus has come back and ministered for us in the first apartment. "But this man, after he had offered one sacrifice for sins, forever sat down on the right hand of God." (Heb. 10:12.) Is there anywhere a more holy place than where God is?
Had Jesus ministered, as she says, eighteen centuries in the holy place till 1844? He ascended to heaven A.D. 34. 34 from 1844 leaves a rest of 1810 years. If Jesus had ministered in the first apartment during this period, there would be no high priest during these 1810 years, because his ministration was not in the first apartment but in the most holy place. We are exhorted to "come boldly unto the throne of grace." (Heb. 4:16). Where was the throne of grace in the earthly sanctuary? In the most holy place. It is also situated in the most holy place in the heavenly sanctuary, and if Christ had been there 1810 years, no prayers would have been answered during that time. Therefore we cannot believe that she has any new light from the throne in heaven, nor that it is a sin to reject such revelations. If we commit no greater wrong, the judgment day will have no terror for us. If the new prophets "speak not according to God's word, it is because there is no light in them." (Isa. 8: 20.) We believe according to God's word, and therefore we receive no light from Mrs. White's revelations.
As our hight priest, the Lord Jesus, has entered into the heavenly sanctuary for us, we think that there is a sanctuary and ministration in it for us. How this service is performed, we cannot say . But we see from both type and anti-type that it cannot be as confused as the Adventists have made it.
If one sees the shadow of a horse, there must be a horse somewhere. If one sees the shadow of a man, a man must be somewhere in the neighborhood. If the earthly sanctuary is the shadow in this meaning, then the ideal which is in heaven performs the same service as the shadow, which was in the earthly tabernacle.
According to Mrs. White's visions Christ began his priestly functions A.D. 34. This ministration was the ideal; the shadow thereof was here on earth in the earthly sanctuary. The shadow accordingly was before the object, the earthly ministration before the heavenly. We could never have seen the shadow of a horse, if no horse existed. The earthly priests, offered animals twice daily. If now ideal and shadow were corresponding here, Christ must have been killed more than one million three hundred thousand times till 1844. But he offered himself as a sacrifice only once. The blood of the sacrificial animals was sprinkled on the altar (Lev. 4:8), the blood of ,Christ was shed on the ground. Christ was raised on a cross. The animals were not sacrificed in that manner. Their bodies were burnt, Christ's was not burnt. The former were killed before the door of the tabernacle. (Lev. 16:3,4.) Christ was killed on Calvary outside of Jerusalem. As this tabernacle was not made with hands (Heb. 9:11), and the veil was his flesh (Heb. 10:20), it is clear that all these references are figures of speech. The Adventists make much ado of the fact, that Moses was commanded to make the earthly, tabernacle like the pattern, which was shown to him on the mountain (Ex. 25:10). Nobody has contradicted that. But where is it written, that the type which Moses saw is the sanctuary in which the heavenly ministrations take place? The tabernacle of Moses was forty-five feet long and fifteen wide. The holy place thirty feet long and the holy of holies fifteen. As to the dimensions of the heavenly places we have no knowledge.
Jesus rode in a carriage into the most holy place 1844, Mrs. White tells us, to begin his ministration as a high priest, Now he has ministered there for 1810 years. If his earthly ministration is the shadow of the heavenly, then Jesus must minister as many days in the most holy as in the holy. 1810 days make five years and ten days. Jesus will thus have completed his priestly ministration November 1, 1849. But now he has been there 68 years, instead of five. The high priest had only one day a year, but Jesus has already had one day of each twenty-seven days or thirteen of 360, corresponding to 24,480 years in the holy place instead of 1810 years. My brethren, listen to the voice of Jehovah, recorded in Isa. 3:12, "As for my people, children are their oppressors, and women rule over them. O my people, they which lead thee cause thee to err, and destroy the way of thy path."
This is an astounding statement, and the Adventists say now that Mrs. White never has said so, as it is too thick.
I have published a circular on the 8th chapter of Daniel and show them a reasonable interpretation of this prophecy. But as long as they persist in believing that Mrs. White is a veritable prophet, whatever is proven to them, they will not see. She stands before their vision as a dark body before the natural eye. Afterwards I published another circular, containing twenty-three paragraphs, against her unfulfilled and unbiblical prophecies.
This document caused not a little stir in the camp. It contained salve enough to anoint the eyes of those, who wanted to have them opened, to see for themselves whether Mrs. White is a false prophetess or not.
In a little monthly paper, published by the Adventists in College View, Neb., my circular was analyzed by an appointed committee. The committee did not dare to attack more than five of the weakest points, and in order to clear her case they were constrained to avail themselves of cheap tricks and artifices, not to say anything worse, to save the reputation of some of her writings from which I had taken my quotations. But unfortunately these are as impossible to defend as it is to run between New York and Chicago without stopping.
Many have told me that I have a hard class of people (Adventist preachers) to deal with. I am aware of this, but feel in my spirit as Hezekiah did, when the Lord told him that he had to deal with a people whose foreheads were hard. "As an adamant, harder than flint, have I made thy forehead' fear them not, neither be dismayed at their looks, though they be a rebellious house" (Hez. 3:9).
One of my points was that Mrs. White taught that after 1844 the door of grace was shut. The committee said, that she did not teach this but was opposed to those who held this view.
Wm. Miller taught first that the door of grace was shut. He says in "Advent Herald," Dec. 11, 1844, that he had made it his chief object in life to warn sinners and to try to wake up the congregation dead in formalities. God has in his providence shut the door. This was twenty days after the date they thought Christ would return, October 22, 1844. Miller gave up his speculations afterwards, seeing how mistaken he was. He says again, "I have no confidence in the new theory, which has gone out from this movement, namely that Christ came as a bridegroom, that the door of grace is shut, that there is no more grace for sinners, that the seventh trumpet has sounded, it does not agree with the prophecy in any respect." ("Adv. Message", page 412.)
When he was honest enough to abandon his erroneous doctrines, he received some special attention from Mrs. White. She says,
"At length William Miller raised his voice against the light from heaven. He failed in not receiving the message which would have fully explained his disappointment and cast a light and glory on the past, which would have revived his exhausted energies, brightened his hope, and led him to glorify God. He leaned to human wisdom instead of divine. God suffered him to fall under the power of Satan. I saw that he erred as he was soon to enter Canaan, in suffering his influence to go against the truth." ("Early Writings," pages 257, 258.)
Again, "Then I was shown that the commandments of God, and the testimony of Jesus Christ relating to the shut door, could not be separated." (Page 42.)
She might just as well have said that she saw that her visions and the commandments of God could not be separated. The foregoing proves conclusively that she believed the door, of grace was shut.
A little worn out paper called "Word to the Little Flock," published in Brunswick, Me., 1847, which had found its way to Chicago was read here by many some years ago. It was borrowed on condition to return immediately. Though it may be difficult to secure a copy to verify the quotation I am going to make, there are several persons living who can bear me out in this. There she has these pregnant words, "I saw that there was no more grace for sinners after 1844." (?)
A certain John Megquier, Poland, Me., writes that she had visions in his home, according to her own statements. At these occasions God had shown her, that the door of grace was shut and no more opportunity given for salvation. ("True Sabbath," page 70.)
That Jesus had left the throne of grace and the world was doomed to destruction. ("True Sabbath", page 72.)
For further testimony in this matter I refer to page 429 in "The Great Controversy,"
"After the passing of the time when the Saviour was expected, they still believed his coming to be near, they held that they had reached an important crisis, and that the work of Christ as man's intercessor before God had ceased. — Having given the warning of the judgment near, they felt that their work for the world was done, and they lost their burden of soul for the salvation of sinners, while the bold and blasphemous scoffing of the ungodly seemed to them another evidence that the Spirit of God had been withdrawn from the rejecters of his mercy."
All this confirmed them in the belief that probation had ended, or, as they then expressed it, "the door of mercy was shut."
"But while it was true that the door of hope and mercy by which men had for eighteen hundred years found access to God was closed, another door was opened, and forgiveness of sins was offered to men through the intercession of Christ in the most holy. One part of his ministration had closed, only to give place to another. There was still an "open door" to the heavenly sanctuary where Christ was ministering in the sinner's behalf." (Page 430.)
Having now been compelled, against their wish, to concede that she had taught the door of mercy to be closed in 1844, they say that she meant for those who rejected the light. What light? The edition of "The Great Controversy" which I use was published forty-four years after she taught that the door of hope and mercy was shut. Now if she meant that it was closed for those, who did not believe in Miller's or her light, then she ought to have written that the work of Christ as the mediator between God and man had ceased, as far as they were concerned, in 1844. "Not a ray of light shall reach the sinners after 1844."
Why not say then that she meant those who did not believe in 1844?
When she does not write anything but what God has given her through visions, then the door of mercy is shut or she is a false prophetess.
The last edition of "Early Writings" is published 1907, five years ago. There is an article under the heading, "The open and the shut door" (pages 42-45). She says,
"The enemies of the present truth have been trying to open the door of the holy place, that Jesus has shut, and to shut the door of the most holy place, which he opened in 1844. Satan is now using every device in this sealing time to keep the minds of God's people from the present truth, and to cause them to waver. He was at work through ministers who have rejected the truth, My accompanying angel bade me look for the travail of soul for sinners as used to be. I looked, but could not see it; for the time for their salvation is past."
On one page she uses seven lines, when those who have taken it upon themselves to defend her require thirty-nine to defend her and make us believe, that she does not mean what she says but something else.
If they dared to speak out and say, "She does not mean what she says and cannot be depended upon," we would believe that they were ready to accept the real truth. But now they think that no greater sin could be committed than to reject her wonderful light from the throne of God. Therefore they are hidebound in their errors.
The committee chastised me and stigmatized me as a falsifier, when I pointed out these statements from her own pen.
"I saw a throne, and on it sat the Father and the Son. I gazed on Jesus' countenance and admired his lovely person. Before the throne I saw the Advent people — the church and the world. I saw two companies, one bowed down before the throne, deeply interested, while the other stood uninterested and careless. I saw the Father rise from the throne, and in a flaming chariot go into the holy of holies within the veil, and sit down. Then Jesus rose up from his throne, and most of those who were bowed down arose with him. I did not see one ray of light pass from Jesus to the careless multitude after he arose, and they were left in perfect darkness. Then he raised his right arm, and we heard his lovely voice saying, 'Wait here ; I am going to my Father to receive the Kingdom, and in a little while I will return from the wedding and receive you to myself." Then a cloudy chariot, with wheels like flaming fire, surrounded by angels, came to where Jesus was. He stepped into the chariot and was borne to the holiest, where the Father sat. There I beheld Jesus, a great High Priest, standing before the Father. I turned to look at the company who were still bowed before the throne; they did not know that Jesus had left it. Satan appeared to be by the throne, trying to carry on the work of God. I saw them look up to the throne, and pray, 'Father, give us Thy Spirit.' Satan would then breathe upon them an unholy influence. Satan's object was to keep them deceived, and to draw back and deceive God's children." ("Early Writings", pages 54-56.)
If this is not full-fledged lunacy we don't know what it is. We need to read the litany, "From such miserable doctrines, save us, O dear Lord."
The genial committee says, that the above nonsense is a description of the contest between the powers of light and darkness during the era of grace, and that I have ignored the context, wherefore I am an irresponsible deceiver.
Let us now see, who is deceived, the committee or I. We have proved already that, according to Mrs. White, the. 2,300 days ended in 1844. This is as certain as Providence.
The Lord has his throne in heaven. "Heaven is my throne, and the earth is my footstool" (Isa. 66:1). If Satan were to appear before God's throne, he must be where God's throne is. If Satan appeared on earth, God's throne must be there. But it has in all probability not been removed. The writings of Mrs. White show, that it was those who refused to believe in her visions about the change and the riding in a flaming chariot who could not be present at the marriage feast; they were now foolish virgins. When they teach to this day, that the parable of the ten virgins was fulfilled in 1844, anyone can see how foolish the application will be.
She closes her article with these words, "Satan's object was to keep them deceived, and to draw back and deceive God's children." If Satan was on the earth, what is then meant by "draw back" and deceive God's children who also were on the earth?
The committee answers, "She means that she saw them by faith standing before God's throne."
Adventists! You ought not to accuse the pope in Rome of keeping his people in bonds and fetters, as long as you believe in and are bound by the fanaticisms of an old woman. If she cannot claim the honor of being the pope No. 1, she certainly is No. 2. Satan was cast out and his angels; neither was their place found any more in heaven. This is the verdict of God's holy Spirit (Rev. 12).
Let us consider for a moment the position the poor people were in, whom she saw bowed before the throne, praying, "Father, give us Thy Spirit." Whether it was in heaven or on the earth they were offering this prayer, Satan came and breathed upon them. The only thing that helped them was Mrs. White's wonderful "light from God's throne." A great light, indeed. He who can believe such fantasies is a full-blooded Adventist. He who does not believe them is, like myself, a renegade who has abandoned the truth.
About a year ago I wrote to one of their preachers who was not sufficiently rooted and grounded in "the truth," and asked him if he had read, that Mrs. White saw Satan before God's throne. Neither he nor his wife believed that this was the case, but that I probably was mistaken. His wife persuaded him to send for the book "Early Writings" so that they might see for themselves. Afterwards he wrote to me that he had found it as well as many other things, which neither he nor thousands of other Adventists had ever seen. They left the sect afterwards and visited me in Chicago. The wife told me that when they had read this chapter, they fell upon their knees and cried over the misery. My own eyes are filling with tears when I write this.
I also wrote to a brother in the West asking him how he liked "Early Writings." He answered that when he read the book he had the same feeling as if he was knocking his head against the wall. He could not have given a better answer. If the followers of Mrs. White have a scintilla of common sense left they cannot very well read her visions and dreams, fanatical imaginations and bottomless humbug without waking up from their own dreams and getting ready to leave the communion which no longer has any power over them. Many of their congregations have been hopelessly split on this account.
As we have already shown, Mrs. White teaches that "in former times God spoke to the fathers through the prophets and the apostles, but in these last days he speaks to them through the testimony of the Spirit."
It seems to me and a large number of other believers, that the holy Scriptures contain all that pertains to life and salvation, there is therefore no need of her nine large books — "testimonies" — about six times as voluminous as the Bible. This oracle of God contains 66 books, 1189 chapters, 31173 verses, and among this vast literature there is, to my knowledge, not one word written by a woman. This word informs us that God in these last days speaks to us through his Son. Her testimonies and the Bible disagree in a great number of places. It is safest for us to follow the injunction of St. Paul to Timothy, "But continue thou in the things which thou hast learned and hast been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them — the holy Scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus." (2 Tim. 3: 13-17.)
One of their preachers who had been with them a long time said some time ago, "Her prophecies have been the greatest curse among us. Congregations have been split and the most intimate ties of friendship have been broken through them." Did he exaggerate? What was the cause of the separation of 1,321 Sabbath observers at the Lake Union Conference in 1910? Of course, "they left the truth." The aforesaid preacher has also broken the chains that kept him in bondage.
Mrs. White says in her testimonies, (Vol. iv, page 230,) "My work for the last thirty years bear an imprint of either God or Satan. The testimonies are either by God or the Devil."
As far as we can comprehend her writings, her testimonies are neither from God nor Satan, but an expression of her imagination or fantasies. But as people have been misled by them and great damage done among the plain and ignorant classes, it becomes a duty to reveal their true nature and warn against them. If she was the only believer in them we would riot go to the trouble of attacking them.
Some of the Adventists are real dreamers and easy marks as herself. A preacher dreamed of me and one of the members that we were in a serpent's nest. When I had left the congregation he made public reference to his dream, but mentioned only my name. Two years later the preacher had some difficulty with the other member. Then he found out that he also was in the serpent's nest. The interpretation of the dream was that I had left the truth and come among a people that are opposed to the Adventists. Among these he especially noticed D. M. Canright and W. Norstrom. Both of these men have done their cause a great deal of harm. The dreamer was thinking of these things, when he saw that I did not swallow everything he set before me, he feared I was going to leave them. If the dream has any meaning at all, it must be that I came out of the serpent's nest (their doctrinal system). The Lord brought me up out of the horrible pit. Glory to his name!
There was another member, among them, a plain and good man, but simple minded in the highest degree. A certain person boarded in his home. The boarder had forgotten his door-key one evening when he was coming home late. God now shook the gas chandelier so he woke him up at the right moment in order to open the door. When he told me of this wonderful incident I said to him that he should not believe such nonsense. The man was in no danger. There might have been some object to shake the gas fixtures if fire had broken out in the building and the poor people had gotten a chance to escape the flames. The shaking of the gas fixtures can more easily be explained by physical reasons.
A woman who received coal from the Associated Charities refused to accept it, because the driver belonged to a labor union, and this institution is of the devil. Among such people independent and clearheaded thinking is a crime and an abomination.
September "23, 1849, Mrs. White had a vision again,
"Then I was pointed to some who are in the great error of believing that it is their duty to go to old Jerusalem, and think they have a work to do there before the Lord comes. It would take a long while to make a very few of the Jews believe even in the first advent of Christ, much more to believe in His second advent." ("Early Writings," pages 64-65.)
The committee says now that she dissuaded them in the beginning of their work to go to Jerusalem. Now they believe there is a mission for them in Jerusalem; therefore they are sending missionaries to the holy land. Why should it be a greater error then than it is now. I pointed out in the protest that if God had shown her this in the vision, he ought to have understood better. You will admit that the vision she had in 1849 was an error or else it is an error to send missionaries now. (See page 64.)
These words appeared in a circular I published against her. Now the committee says that I criticized her because she had warned some persons who were urging the question of diet too hard.
I have not attacked her because she pressed the dietary question too severely; but I have shown that she is a false prophetess.
Some preachers had read in the Bible that pork was an unclean food, because the swine belong to the unclean animals. They believed this and preached it to others. (Lev. 11:17; Isa. 66:17.)
Now Mrs. White got a vision in reference to the case,
In "The Great Controversy", page 595, Mrs. White says, "Before accepting any doctrine or precept, we should demand a plain 'Thus saith the Lord' in its support."
If the preacher had acted unwisely, let them correct him. But it cannot be proved to be error. To keep the truth to themselves and to put the light under a bushel is hypocrisy. They were not ahead of the angels. But they were ahead of Mrs. White who wants to govern these people with the big stick. They were not doing a work from which they needed to be saved. Unwise zeal is no sin. Their souls were not withering. They were not guided by a fanatical spirit. They had a "Thus saith the Lord" in support of their doctrine.
Five years after she had this vision about the mistake of the preacher, she had another vision (1863) in regard to sanitary reform. Then God showed her what they should not eat, and she exhorted all, especially the preachers, to take a definite stand against the following articles of food : Tea, coffee, meat, pork, cheese, butter, eggs, spices, mince pie, sugarcake, etc. This is stated in several of her books.
She claims that God has, through visions, opened her eyes to these things, that God has given her testimonies for their guidance, and that no greater sin can be committed than rejecting her testimonies. But it is not given to produce any new light.
Now we want Mrs. White or any other Adventists, to show us where in the Bible it is forbidden to eat all these things, or otherwise let them acknowledge that she is a false prophetess. Because one who is half right and half wrong is not acknowledged by the Lord. When she had this great vision, as it is erroneously called, she took away nearly all that there is on a hungry man's table; no wonder there was a great confusion about what people were allowed to eat. Many thousands wrote and others came to the preachers asking what food was permitted to the faithful.
With the exception of a few desiccated souls, who are altogether wrapped up in Mrs. White and her follies, the Adventists have rejected her bill of fare, save pork; against this item they have all taken a firm stand. Thus she punished the preacher and the others, the only tenable thing in her vision. Will you admit that such is the case, or do you intend to procure a larger brush to whitewash your deception with, when you come together next time?
"Woe unto the foolish prophets, that follow their own spirit, and have seen nothing." (Ez. 13:3.)
January 4, 1862, some things were shown me concerning our nation. (Testimonies, Vol. I, page 253.)
"This system of slavery which is going to ruin our nation will live and call forth another civil war."
Did the civil war ruin America and did it call forth another civil war? No, no. Will you admit that this is no wonderful light from God's throne? Lies!
"It seemed impossible to carry on the war with success." (Page 256.)
Was the war carried on with success? Everybody knows that it was. Her prophecies way from the mark again.
"I saw misery and hunger in the land." (Page 260.)
Does history know of any such calamity at that particular period. No more than at other times.
In connection with these visions about the nation she says concerning slavery,
"All heaven beholds with indignation human beings, the workmanship of God, reduced by their fellowmen to the lowest depths of degradation, and placed on a level with the brute creation. Angels have recorded it all; it is written in the book. The tears of the pious bondmen and bondwomen, of fathers, mothers and children, brothers and sisters, are all bottled up in heaven. God will restrain His anger but little longer. His wrath burns against this nation, and especially against the religious bodies that have sanctioned this terrible traffic, and have themselves engaged in it." ("Early Writings", page 275.)
"I saw the pious slave rise in victory and triumph, and shake off the chains that bound him, while his wicked master was in confusion, and knew not what to do." (Page 285. )
Here my opponents say that she meant the slavery' of sin, which is going to last till Jesus comes. She saw the wrath of God stirred up and could only be held back a little longer. But let us examine this a little closer. It was the pious slave who was to shake off the chains, but is it not curious that the slaves of sin should be called pious? That is a contradiction I will not lay at the feet of Mrs. White. She did not mean them, but the slaves of America who have been free for fifty years. When slavery was abolished her theories were shown to be unsound, and in order to repair her sinking ship the following editions have a note in the marginal, that she does not mean the slavery of America, which is precisely what she says. Her apostles always know what she means when her prophecies turn out to be absolute failures.
Does she really mean the slave of sin on page 286, in "Early Writings"? "I saw the pious slave of sin rise in victory and shake off the chains that bound him in sin?" Let the Adventists rise and explain the wonderful logic in this consummate nonsense.
If people were as afraid of doing wrong as they are anxious to save their miserable idols, our world would look a great deal better than it does now.
The Adventists are greatly enraged against me, because I point out their astounding mistakes. But I hope they will get their eyes open by and by.
Finally my antagonists rebuke me for getting into controversy with a woman who is 85 years old.
As far as I know I have not started any controversy with her; my object is only to show that her prophecies are false and misleading. But if it can be shown me in the Bible that it is wrong to reveal false prophets, when they attain to a venerable age, I shall immediately desist and ask both her and the Adventists to pardon me. God himself cries woe over false prophets, and as far as my means will allow I intend to follow the voice of the Spirit in this respect and unveil the falsehood.
Why cannot the Adventists leave the Catholic church alone? They answer, "Because this church teaches so many erroneous doctrines."
Abandon your own erroneous teachings and prophecies, and people will leave you in peace, but not before. When one ceases another begins. It is just as impossible for the Adventists to defend Mrs. White's revelations without subterfuges and deception as it is for them to go to the moon and plant potatoes. Christ said that all he said he received from the Father, and Mrs. White writes and speaks nothing she does not receive from God's throne. In this respect she places herself in the same exalted position as the Lord Jesus, thereby making greater claims for herself than any prophet dared to do. The Catholic church believes in their pope and traditions; the Adventists have their pope and her traditions, which cannot be proved from the Bible more than the Catholics can prove theirs. It is just as impossible for them to show the proof that the 2,300 days in Dan. 8:14 began 457 B.C. as it is to prove from the Bible accounts that the woman was created before the man. But they still persist in preaching this error, which is — as their prophet says — the hub in the wheel. If they cannot prove that Jesus entered the heavenly sanctuary and commenced his office as a high priest in A. D. 1844, it is thereby proven that their doctrinal wheel has never had any hub. Since my circulars have come out, the Swedish Adventists have written more than ever about their foundation, the 2,300 days and the year 1844, in "Tidens Tecken" ("Signs of the Times",) their Swedish organ in America. When one ceases some one else is ready to begin.
Just now a copy of this paper, dated March 12, 1912, came in my hands. In this Henry Johnson has an article on the mediatorial work of Jesus. This is the way he commences, "When Jesus ascended to heaven in the first room, the holy place, in the heavenly sanctuary" etc.
Why does he say so? Because Mrs. White has seen it in her visions, and she never says a word that is not a wonderful light from the throne of God. Here we have the pope of the Adventists just as infallible as the one of the Catholic church. But the plain teaching of the Scripture is that Jesus entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us. (Heb. 9:12; 6:19-20.) Since this profound and original thinker had given the readers a sample of Mrs. White's unspeakable nonsense and perverted the truth, he becomes sentimental and exclaims, "O what depth of wisdom there is in God!" Exactly. But let us add, "O what depth of foolishness there is in Henry Johnson, who can believe in Mrs. White!"
If she has said so, it is right. No examination of her statements is necessary. She cannot make any mistakes for the simple reason that God never makes any mistakes, and she receives her wonderful light directly from God's throne.
Last spring an American preacher spoke for a whole hour in the Swedish Adventist school a little way from Chicago. During this long sermon he did not mention Christ a single time, but he found occasion to elevate Mrs. White to the position of the greatest prophet in the world. This is one of his assertions, "Moses, Isaiah, Ezekiel, Paul and others were great in their day. But since the beginning of the world God has not sent a message to mankind so rich and full of grace as that of Mrs. Ellen White."
A Swedish professor who flared to think for himself said to the graduating class the day after, "Beware to preach in this way when you come out among our people. It is almost a blasphemy. He does not do any favor to Mrs. White or the Adventists thereby."
I am deeply sorry for these deluded people who are so easily caught in the snares of this peculiar woman, who can lead them whithersoever she wants.
Several years ago, when the Swedish Adventists bought their property in Chicago at 213 West Oak St., I was a member of the business committee. I figured out that it was impossible under the present circumstances to open bathrooms without losing money. But bathrooms were established. We made appeals through the papers to the public, we begged privately from our friends. I was also one of the solicitors for funds. If I had then known what I know now about their work, I should not have done it. They elected me as one of the auditors. After the year was up, the congregation found that there was a loss of $300 on this enterprise, though the poor people had done all that they could. One woman out West had set a hen to get some chickens, the income from which was used for this purpose. What I will show with this, is that Mrs. White is the leader in everything they are doing, the greatest as well as the least, and what she dictates must be done.
In "Testimonies," Vol. Ill, page 492, Mrs. White says something like this, I have been shown that the highest tribunal God has on earth is the general conference (of the Seventh-day Adventists). He who opposes this opposes God's highest tribunal on earth.
When the SDA have their general conference, and Mrs. White as their inspired prophetess is among them, then they have God's highest tribunal on earth. Has the pope in Rome ever claimed higher authority? Some of their ministers do really believe, that they are the grand jury of the Almighty and yet they cannot see how dangerously near they are to the Catholic pretensions, which they continually criticise for the very same reason.
All other churches and ministers are called Babylon's churches and Babylon's priests. What other denominations are doing has no value for them. When they appear in public they assume the air of deepest sanctity and humility and sincerity, while at heart they are cold, harsh, critical and conceited. But this is only a natural result of their system.
Some years ago a decree was published, it was stated, from Mrs. White, that a Seventh-day Adventist could not expect the protection of God's angels, if he listened to other ministers. This I heard since I had left them. Some thought this went a little too far, so they have not obeyed the hard edict.
There is a partiality that is commendable. It is right to stand up for and defend a true doctrine, but that is not the same as despising and hating others, whom God evidently have blessed. A Baptist preacher left the church of which he had been a member for fourteen years and where he had received many spiritual blessings, in order to join the Seventh-day Adventists. When he later passed this church, where he had been preaching and praying for so many years he spit at her and called her a harlot. He is now professor in one of the Adventist schools, and if he still has the same spirit, it is easy to understand, what kind of Adventist preachers we can expect for the future. We have a right to demand common decency from those who are going to teach others. The Adventists need not say that these statements are fabrications of my own, because I can name both the preacher and the church, but that is of no importance here, as I am only after the system and not the persons. That this professor is as ignorant in the prophetical word as the people he has proved through his contributions to "Tidens Tecken."
"It was seen, also, that while the sin-offering pointed to Christ as a sacrifice, and the high priest represented Christ as a mediator, the scapegoat typified Satan, the author of sin, upon whom the sins of the truly penitent will finally be placed." ("The Great Controversy", page 422.)
We have then two mediators who bear our sins: Christ and Satan. But if Mrs. White is right, how shall we then understand Isa. 53:6, "The Lord hath laid upon him the iniquity of us all"? (See also 1 Pet. 2: 24.)
A little illustration will make this clear. A owes B one thousand dollars. A is poor and cannot pay the amount. B waives his claim and A is free from debt. Would it be right for B to go to one of A:s neighbors who partly was the cause of A's poverty and indebtedness, who also was without means, and ask of him to demand of A that he should pay the thousand dollars. You say, that is wrong.
But such is the God of Mrs. White. She informs us that Jesus has borne our sins and suffered for them; but in spite of this Satan must suffer and be punished for our sins which are pardoned. Now it is not at all certain that Azasel means Satan. Some interpreters say that it simply means one who carries away and was the symbol of the total removal of sin. So the Lord does; he casts our sins in the depths of the sea and blots them out as a cloud.
In the year 1849, Mrs. White saw that Jesus rode in a cloudy chariot within the second veil 1844. Jesus had accordingly been there five years before Mrs. White saw how he was borne there and became our high priest.
The following was written 1849, "I saw that the time for Jesus to be in the most holy place was nearly finished, and that time can last but very little longer. ("Early Writings", page 58.)
And again in 1849, "The time is so nearly fulfilled; what we have had several years to learn the new converts must acquire in a few months."
At this time she had seen that the time was so nearly fulfilled that the young converts had only a few months to learn what others had had several years to learn.
As she never writes anything that is not a wonderful light from Gods throne, a guidance for his people, and a greater sin can hardly be committed than rejecting her testimony; then we have a right to demand that she shall speak the truth and not deliberately mislead us.
Who speaks the truth here? Am I unreasonable and is my position untenable, as the committee says? "He who has the truth is not blind."
When Adventists start meetings in a new place they have as a rule a series of subjects which they present in a line, the one after the other, leaving the burning topics to the last. If they cannot, as one pastor said, get their hearers in the trap, the game is considered lost.
Now, Adventists, I have succeeded in getting all, prophetess and committee, in the trap, and there is no other way out than to admit, that your prophetess has prophesied falsely. We intend to go after you; here and before the living God we ask you, "What will you do about the prophetess now?"
Suppose for the sake of argument that a company is coming to Chicago and among the company is my aforesaid committee. They intend to visit a place outside of the city and wish to have a guide. I am familiar with the place they want to see; therefore they accept me as their guide and we begin our journey. Having gone five miles, one of the company asks me, how much is left of the way. I answer, "There is only a little bit left." It is absolutely necessary that we must have passed more than half of the way, before I am justified in giving such an answer. We travel sixty-three miles more and come to most desolate places. Many begin to suspect me as a false leader and they drop out, one after the other. One of the company who had left it or them, finds where the place is situated and comes back to them with a map, showing them in all friendliness that I have led them the wrong, way. Would it then be reasonable to select a committee to defend my poor leadership and attack those who had sense enough to leave in order to find out with certainty where the place was? That is precisely what the committee has done.
Mrs. White said in 1849, that the service of Christ in the heavenly sanctuary was nearly finished then, so the newly converted had only a few months' time remaining before Jesus was going to appear. Since she said that sixty-three years have passed away and they are yet here on earth in the most miserable darkness with their prophetess and her visions, but still they don't dare to examine their chart, although hundreds upon hundreds are leaving them on account of the many false assertions she has made.
You ought to be ashamed of yourselves before God and all the heavenly hosts and before all men because you dare to stand up and defend such a prophetess who is deceiving people in such a shameful manner. Sixty-three years are not a few months; the young converts have already had twelve times more time than she has allotted them, and you don't know how much more they get. Seven hundred and fifty months is not equivalent to a few months.
Will you not accept the truth yet? There will be a day when you will be compelled to do so. I do not wish that you should wait till God appears against you and uses his stronger arguments. But those who know the Adventists of the extreme type, fear that they will not yield before they are forced by irresistible means.
Proofs to sustain this view are many. About seven years ago, when we had tent meetings in Chicago, I was going to make a platform for the music-band. The pastor had already bought the lumber, the lumber was five blocks away from the place and the weather was extremely warm. Two of us were going to carry the lumber. I figured out that we had bought just twice as many boards as were needed. I told the pastor this three times. The third time he felt hurt and answered me shortly, "Bring the lumber here, I know it is right." We carried only half the number of boards to our lot and built the platform according to his plan. Half the boards we did not need and received half of the money back from the lumber yard. Then he was compelled to admit that he was wrong. I don't mention this because he made a mistake in his calculations, but because he would not change his wrong opinions. He ought to have said the first time, "Let's figure again." But it is not only in religious questions these people consider themselves as the highest authority, Mrs. White's notions crop out also in everyday life.
Mrs. White says,
"I was shown Adam and Eve, who were privileged to behold the beauty and loveliness of the garden of Eden, and were permitted to eat of all the trees in the garden except one. But the serpent tempted Eve, and she tempted her husband, and they both ate of the forbidden tree. They broke God's commandments and became sinners. The news spread through heaven, and every harp was hushed. I then saw Jesus approach the exceeding bright light which enshrouded the Father. The anxiety of the angels seemed to be intense while Jesus was communing with his Father. He told them he had been pleading with his Father, and had offered to give his life a ransom, to take the sentence of death upon himself, that through him man might find pardon. It was even a struggle with the God of heaven, whether to let guilty man perish, or to give his beloved Son to die for him. God suffered his beloved Son to die for man's transgression. Jesus went then and told the angels that he would stand between the wrath of his Father and guilty man. Then joy, inexpressible joy, filled heaven. And the heavenly host sang a song of praise and adoration. They touched their harps and sang a note higher than they had done before." ("Early Writings", page 125, 126; 149-153.)
"The Kingdom of grace was instituted immediately after the fall of man, when a plan was devised for the redemption of the guilty race." ("The Great Controversy", page 347.)
Is 'there any foundation for such doctrines in the holy writ, or is she coming with a new light again from the throne of God? It is not only a new light, but it is contrary to the plain teaching of the word and common sense. The fall of man did not provoke any stir in heaven.
Paul, the apostle of Jesus Christ, says in Ephesians 1:4, "God hath chosen us in him before the foundation of this world." And the apostle Peter writes in his first epistle 1:20, that our salvation was foreordained before the foundation of the world.
If the Adventists did not believe that she was a greater prophet than Paul and Peter, they would not want to publish such books. Mrs. White is directly against these apostles of the Lord. Who is right? You will have to reject one of the two, either the words of Paul and Peter or those of your prophetess. "Thus saith the Lord of hosts, Hearken not unto the words of the prophets that prophecy unto you; they make you vain : they speak a vision of their own heart, and not out of the mouth of the Lord." (Jer. 23:16.)
Let us listen to Mrs. White once more.
"While appearing to the children of men as a great physician who can heal all their maladies, he will bring disease and disaster, until populous cities are reduced to ruin and desolation. Even now he is at work. In accidents and calamities by sea and by land, in great conflagrations, in fierce tornadoes and terrific hail storms, in tempests, floods, cyclones, tidal waves, and earthquakes, in every place and in a thousand forms, Satan is exercising his power. He sweeps away the ripening harvest, and famine and distress follow. He imparts to the air a deadly taint, and thousands perish by pestilence. These visitations are to become more and more frequent and disastrous. Destruction will be upon both man and beast. "The earth mourneth arid fadeth away," "the haughty people ... do languish. The earth also is defiled under the inhabitants thereof; because they have transgressed the laws, changed the ordinances, broken the everlasting covenant." (Isa. 24: 4, 5.) (The Great Controversy, pages 589, 590.)
Is it not the height of ignorance when people in this enlightened age will publish books, in which the devil is blamed for all evil that is done in the world? If the devil is to be blamed for all evil Mrs. White lays before his feet, then it seems as though he had taken supremacy over both God and man. The calamities by sea and by land he is the author of. He was accordingly in the cow that overturned the lantern which caused the great Chicago fire. He was, of course, in the electric wire and caused the fire in the Iroquois theater some years ago, wherein more than six hundred people lost their lives. He is the origin of all conflagrations, arson included. Several buildings collapse here in Chicago every year; some while under construction. Trains collide daily when thousands lose their lives. The hospitals are full of patients. Diseases are prevalent in cities and in the country. Ships are wrecked by the hundreds and one hundred after the other of innocent human beings are called away through these calamities. The devil is doing all this. He placed the iceberg in the way of the Titanic, causing one of the most appalling disasters in modern times. He holds back the rain in India for long seasons, but allows China to be flooded causing death and destruction in both countries. Earthquakes, cyclones, droughts etc. are. beyond human control; but most accidents and calamities are caused by carelessness or dishonesty on the part of someone. Diseases are caused by the violation of the laws which the Creator has given us to obey. If she speaks the truth in the foregoing paragraph, she certainly has received a great and peculiar light from the throne. Mrs. White makes God a veritable weakling instead of one who has all power in heaven and on earth, who allows the devil to run his universe one millennium after the other. If God is unable to put a stop to his malicious government, the great world powers ought to do something to check him.
But my opinion is that even if all the military powers in the world called out their men and began to shoot in all directions, they would not hit him. When the house builder tries to cheat the owner and puts in inferior material and workmanship in the foundation, the house will fall, and the builder is the cause of the accident. Therefore we consider it right, that the court pronounces the sentence over him, and does not bother itself about the devil. The same reasoning can be applied to the guard who falls asleep at his post and forgets to put the switches right; he is the cause of the railroad collision that follows, but not the devil. Mrs. White understands seemingly just as much about the laws of nature as Nimrod and his people who were aiming to build a tower reaching toward heaven; if he had had only a little elementary knowledge in natural history he would never have thought of such foolishness. She finishes her article with a quotation from Isaiah, that these phenomena are punishments which God is going to send at last. Has God no power Himself to do this without sending his archenemy? Paul says he has power in the air (not over the air), and Mrs. White's arguments have about the same weight as the air; they are amazingly light and incoherent.
"As the crowning act in the great drama of deception, Satan himself will impersonate Christ. The church has long professed to look to the Saviour's advent as the consummation of her hopes. Now the great deceiver will make it appear that Christ has come. In different parts of the earth, Satan will manifest himself as a majestic being of dazzling brightness, resembling the description of the Son of God given by John in the Revelation (1: 13-15). The glory that surrounds him is unsurpassed by anything that mortal eyes have yet beheld. The shout of triumph rings out upon the air, "Christ has come! Christ has come!" The people prostrate, themselves in adoration before him, while he lifts up his hands, and pronounces a blessing upon them, as Christ blessed his disciples when he was upon the earth. His voice is soft and subdued, yet full of melody. In gentle, compassionate tones he presents some of the same gracious, heavenly truths which the Saviour uttered; he heals the diseases of the people, and then, in his assumed character of Christ, he claims to have changed the Sabbath to Sunday, and commands all to hallow the day which he has blessed." ("The Great Controversy", page 624.)
It is the great prophet of Adventism that predicts future events in this way. He who can believe all this has no need to pray with the disciples, "Increase our faith !" It is the wildest imaginations that a human being can have that she here presents to her church ; but still there are people who believe in this a great deal more than in the Bible. An Adventist preacher, about sixty years old, told me not long ago that he believes in her more now than ever before. As soon as a person has faith in her as a prophetess he is uncapable to spread the light that Christ wishes, to have spread in the world, but he becomes an adept in the art of circulating Mrs. White's perversions and to make proselytes for her imaginary truth.
"It is at midnight that God manifests his power for the deliverance of his people . . . Everything in nature seems turned out of its course. The streams cease to flow. Dark, heavy clouds come up, and clash against each other . . . The mountains shake like a reed in the wind, and ragged rocks are scattered on every side." ("The Great Controversy", page 636.)
"The sun came up, and the moon stood still . . . the sea boiled like a pot, and cast out stones upon the land." ("Early Writings", page 34.)
Then she sees the 144,000, who were changed and taken up in heaven. They had been without a mediator. These were the Seventh-day Adventists. In their mouths no lie had been found, because they are without a blemish. Neither had they been contaminated with women (other churches) etc.
Have we any support in the Scripture for such statements? The streams will cease to flow, the moon will stand still and the sea boil as a pot. Then it will be so hot that no human being can live here, not even the devil during the thousand years he — according to the Adventists — shall dwell here. Are the Adventists the 144,000 of the tribes of Israel? Have they never belonged to other churches? If no lie shall be found in their mouths, than we have to wait a long time, before we get 144,000 such Adventists. In the first place they will have to repudiate all of Mrs. White's prophecies and all superstructures that have been built upon them; but, alas! it will no doubt require a long period before they get grace enough to do that.
Once upon a time she saw in a vision how the dress of the sisters ought to be so they should not have to follow the fashions of the world. The reform dress should be nine inches from the ground, the lowest seam to be midway between the knees and the ground, then the pantaloons followed to the feet. When this model was ready she says, "Those who have heard me on this question are responsible for the light they have received. I have done my duty. I have given my testimony. Those who have heard me must either accept or reject the light." ("Testimonies," Vol. I, page 523.)
This time the prophet ran up against a snag. The sisters rejected the light from the Lord (Mrs. White) and ran their own risk. Not one accepted her reform dress, a heavy blow to the great prophet.
When the sisters were obstinate and protested against the first reform dress, Mrs. White made the unchangeable Lord make an exception in this case and showed her another dress, which was supposedly more according to the taste of the sisters.
Once when I mentioned to an Adventist preacher that God seemed to change his views just as she wished, he answered, that Lot was ordered to flee to the mountains, but asked of the Lord permission to go to Zoar which was granted him.
The reform dress number two was longer, but pantaloons should still be worn, and the edict caused a great deal of trouble among them. The men refused to be seen in company with the sisters. The boys mocked and laughed at the women when they walked on the street. Some of them cried; and no wonder, I have seen people shed tears over smaller things than this. The reform dress was after a while laid aside both by Mrs. White and her sisters.
But it goes without saying that this was a terrific blow to one who was used to being obeyed in everything, and at last it became a burden to her. On January 3, 1875, when she was in Battle Creek, Mich., it was shown to her that the great dissimilarity in dress was harmful to the congregation, and the reform dress had been a blessing if accepted. For no kind of dress could be better in the Sanitarium and should not have been rejected. ("Testimonies," Vol. IV, page 636.)
Since God had shown her this some simple minded souls began to adopt the reform dress again which they formerly had rejected. They thought like this, "If she is a prophet it is better for us to obey, or we may be lost." And, of course, they were right — if she is a prophet.
The waves that had been quiet for awhile commenced to rage again. Let us now listen to Mrs. White's testimony, which she published to relieve them from the duty to wear the reform dress.
"Our sisters, whose mind is agitated again over this matter, namely the reform dress, should pray much and carefully guard every thought in this direction. The Lord has not ordered any specimen of human device to come in and stir up the minds of our people. No certain form has been given to me as a pattern for all to dress after. Plain clothes should be used." ("Review and Herald," Sep. 11, 1900, page 583.)
If the poor woman is so simple minded then she is in a deplorable condition, or otherwise she is sly as a fox. God knows her. Here she has gone the most crooked ways to escape disgrace. She speaks untruthfully either the first time or the second.
We may be reasonably sure, that if the Lord had shown her the reform dress, the first one would do without any alterations. It does not work well to fool with God in this way. But Mrs. White evidently does not take it so serious, as she laid aside the reform dress and was willing to take the consequences for disobeying this injunction from God's throne.
If anyone should ask the Adventists, "What is the testimony of Jesus?" they would invariably answer, "That is the Spirit of prophecy." And let someone say, "Who is the spirit of prophecy?" and the answer immediately is, "That is the testimony of Jesus." This is true; but we receive no light upon the subject. They might just as well say, the doctor is the physician, and the physician is the doctor. But we want to know, what is the occupation of the doctor or physician? If you ask the Adventists in a meeting, "All those who believe that Mrs. White is the Spirit of prophecy please raise your hand," most of them would lift one hand, and some would raise both their hands. And again let us say, "All who believe that Mrs. White's nine large books are the testimony of Jesus to the congregation," they could be depended upon to do as before.
She has taken the holy book and surrounded it with the different testimonies to the churches. A greater sin could hardly be committed than to reject them. God speaks through them now. It is a divine light from God's throne.
Some six years ago, before I had left them, I was delegate to a conference that was held on the Southside in Chicago. Elder Moon had the subject Organization for discussion. He showed how Moses was the general of the Israelites, and that the whole multitude, or a part of them, turned to Moses when they were bewildered about what to do, Moses then turned to the Lord, and the Lord gave his oracles to Moses who communicated them to the people. And what Moses was for Israel Mrs. White is for us. She receives a special revelation from God on all such questions, not understood by us, that we may be one in faith.
But unfortunately it is not true that they are one in faith. There is a great diversity of opinion even here. A pastor once asked a young graduate from their seminary, "How many Gods have we?" He said he was going to find out. He certainly is a first rate preacher in Mrs. White's sect, because he did not dare to have any independent opinion, but was ready to accept any theory that came from her. The only doctrine where they are unified in faith is the prophetical, and this subject they do not understand, neither professors, pastors, nor people.
When someone is seeking information concerning a special subject they always recommend their bookshops, where they think all the treasures of knowledge and wisdom are available.
In their schools there are no question of examining doctrinal statements, but to read the books and thus be familiar with their theories. When such a person who cannot and dare not think comes out in the field, he is incapable of grasping anything but the miserable doggerel he has learned in school. Students from the seminary have come to me with questions regarding certain things in their theology, which do not harmonize with the Bible. Once I asked a student why he did not put such questions to the teacher. He answered, "It is no use, because if we do not believe just as he says we are considered incompetent to carry the message." It is only the prophet or some elder who has a right to bring any new light. Therefore, as long as an Adventist believes in Mrs. White he is shut out from all light. They are just as fettered and hide-bound as the Catholics.
In case of discussion between two brethren regarding some biblical subject this question invariably arises, "What says the Spirit of prophecy" (Mrs. White)? What she says is right, whether it agrees with the Bible and science or not.
This is the way in which Mrs. White lets her wonderful light shine, although she says that God has not sent her with any new light. In Rev. 12 we certainly read about a rebellion in heaven; but we have good reasons to doubt whether the angels were arranged as fighting armies. And when Satan with his angels returned weeping its seems to me as if God ought to have compassion on them, as he knew that Satan should seduce man to sin and cause such endless misery, as she says.
However beautiful her new light seems to her, I am prepared to show that it is only darkness, horrible error.
According to her article of the fall of Satan, this incident took place before Adam's and Eve's fall in Eden.
In Rev. 12:7 we read, "And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels, and prevailed not, neither was their place found any more in heaven" (verse 8).
Have we any reasonable ground in the Scripture for the belief that this occurred before the fall in Eden?
The Lord Jesus says, "Now is my soul troubled ; and what shall I say? Father, save me from this hour: but for this cause came I unto this hour."
"Father, glorify thy name. Then came there a voice from heaven, saying, I have both glorified it, and will glorify it again. The people therefore that stood by, and heard it, said that it thundered : others said, An angel spoke to him. Jesus answered and said, This voice came not because of me, but for your sakes. Now is the judgment of this world: now shall the prince of this world be cast out." (John 12: 27-31.)
"Of judgment, because the prince of this world is judged." (John 16:11.)
"And he said unto them, I beheld Satan as lightning fall from heaven." (Luk. 10:18.)
When Satan was cast out a loud voice was heard from heaven saying, "Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night." (Rev. 12 : 9, 10.)
If Satan was cast out before the fall, there was none to accuse before God. "The devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time." (Rev. 12: 12.) If he was cast out before the fall he has had all the time — could he expect any more?
Let us once more examine Mrs. White's new light.
It is sad, indeed, when a person is so ignorant that he believes, that the God of all wisdom has laid the foundation for the prophetic message of the Adventists. Then she deserves our pity. He who wants to examine the foundation will need only a short time to find out, that it is false. Those who have a little sense come down from it, but those who are thoroughly converted to Mrs. White's errors will in all probability remain until their eyes will be opened some day. Warnings are of no avail.
"I saw that as the Jews crucified Christ, so the churches have crucified the message of the third angel. I saw that God has sincere children in these fallen churches; but before the last plagues are poured out, both preachers and members will go out from the churches and receive the message with joy and place themselves among the remnant.
"I saw, since the message of the second angel was announced that the churches were fallen, that they have become more and more depraved. Satan has taken full control over the churches as a body. The message that was given by the second angel, that Babylon was fallen, was repeated and to it was added the corruption which penetrated the churches since 1844."
She saw when the message of the third angel was concluded, that God gave them the last rain as a refreshment. The great last warning was announced everywhere.
She saw angels hurrying back and forth in heaven. An angel with the inkwell at his side returns from the earth and reports to Jesus that his work was done and that the Saints were sealed.
Have you read anything like this in God's holy word ? Jesus knows his own and is known by them; therefore it seems unnecessary to have an angel coming over here to put an ink-stamp upon God's people. The only seal the Bible knows anything about is the seal of God's Holy Spirit. Seek to get the blessing the Lord promises in his word. If you are going to wait for the angel Mrs. White saw coming to earth with an inkstand by his side, you will wait in vain.
It is recorded in the ninth chapter of Ezekiel that one of the six men who came from the higher gate and was clothed with linen that he had an inkhorn by his side and that the Lord said unto him, "Go through the midst of the city, through the midst of Jerusalem and get a mark upon the foreheads of the men that sigh and that cry for all the abominations that be done in the midst thereof." (Verse 4.) And the man clothed with linen, which had the inkhorn by his side, reported saying, "I have done as thou hast commanded me." (Verse 11.)
If Mrs. White had studied the contents she would not have made this applicable to the time when Jesus shall leave the holy place of heaven as she has done. She has been thinking that this was going to take place then, and straightway she got a vision about it.
This vision deals with the inhabitants in the city of Jerusalem! Manasseh, the King of Judah, rebuilt the high places which his father Hezekiah had destroyed (2 Kings 21:1-3). Idolatry flourished in Judah and Jerusalem. The King of Judah, Josiah, was a good man. The people had burned incense unto other Gods and provoked the Lord to anger (2 Kings 22:17). Josiah commanded them to bring out from the temple all the vessels that were made for Baal. And he put down the idolatrous priests whom the kings of Judah had ordained (2 Kings 23).
In the eighth chapter of Ezekiel we are told how the idolatrous abominations were most flagrant in Jerusalem. Seventy elders had each a censer in their hands and burned incense to the heathen deities.
When the prophet came to "the inner court of the Lord's house he beheld "at the door of the temple of the Lord, between the porch and the altar, about five and twenty men, with their backs toward the temple of the Lord, and their faces toward the east, and they worshipped the sun toward the east." (Verse 16.) Jerusalem was destroyed and the people went into captivity. The aforementioned vision was applied to the people before the captivity, but it may also have a symbolical meaning and refer to future events.
In the seventh chapter of the Revelation mention is made of an angel ascending from the east, haying the seal of the living God : and he cried with a loud voice to the four angels, to whom it was given to hurt the earth and the sea, saying, Hurt not the earth, neither the sea, nor the trees, till we have sealed the servants of our God in their foreheads." (Verses 2,3.)
This picture should not be taken lightly. But it is not easy to say how it is going to be fulfilled. Yet, not even the Adventists believe that an angel is going to come and make a mark with ink upon the foreheads of the righteous. They believe that the Sabbath is the seal of Go,d. We think it is better to adhere to the word of God. In Ephesians 1:13 it is stated, that those who had believed and received salvation "were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise," and in chapter four, verse 30, we read, "And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption." 2 Cor. 1:22: "Who hath also sealed us, and given the earnest of the Spirit in our hearts."
The reader cannot wonder that I am tired to relate these numberless follies which the Adventist leader has sent out in the world. We could keep on till we had several books full of them. If you have followed me from the beginning, and noticed the various illusions which she is pleased to call heavenly visions, one tenth is sufficient to prove that she is not of a sane mind, as a reasonable person ought to be, but is sickly and deplorable in some way. Sometimes she has written with sense, but not when she has treated the subject of prophecy. No one should have followed her leadership or listened to her from the beginning. Now her superstitions and prevarications have fenced in nearly one hundred thousand souls, among them many sincere, though ignorant, children of God. Therefore we raise our voice against her errors and want to show them the truth, in order to persuade those who are honest to investigate the dark and mysterious net, in which they have been caught, that they may be able to get out in liberty again.
Not one Adventist out of ten has read Mrs. White's unfulfilled prophecies. I was among them about four years before I saw that there was something wrong about them. I never bothered myself with her prophecies and did not know that they played such important part, before I had been several years among them. They receive their members in a mysterious way. When members are received in their congregations, they ask if you believe in the Spirit of prophecy; but the candidate does not know that they mean a woman, nor that her nine large books, called the testimonies, are going to be his guiding star henceforth. This alone is a huge deception. It may be that the practice varies among different leaders; but it is dishonest to come after a year and demand that people should believe in her. Why not enlighten the members about her position, before they enter their fold? It is easy to explain. A person who can think for himself would never join them. But after a' while they begin to speak of their prophet and her "Testimonies" to the congregation, declaring that it is of great consequence not to believe in her as a prophet. Simple minded people believe this and take a stand for a thing they do not understand.
They learn the Adventist dogmas by heart and talk as long as they are permitted, while the others accept their harangues. As long as they can proceed in this easygoing manner everything is pleasant. But if they are going to prove what they say they are speechless as the fishes in the sea. They read their books without understanding what they read; believe blindly without any foundation.
Has he nothing good to say about Mrs. White? they ask.
That is not the question under discussion now, but we are investigating her claims to be a prophet of the Lord, which she pretends to be. Where she is right she needs no defense.
For the sake of illustration let us suppose that you receive frequent calls by someone. From time to time he is telling you various stories. At last you commence to investigate whether his statements are reliable, and you find that they are fabrications of his own fancy, pure and simple. With his prevarications he has caused a great disturbance in the community and is summoned before the Court to answer for his conduct that has caused so much harm. The Court is trying to find out whether the man is guilty of lying or not. There is no question of how many times he has spoken truthfully in his life, but whether he is guilty of the misdemeanor of which he is accused. The plaintiff has called two witnesses. They testify that the defendant has told falsehoods. The defendant has produced one hundred witnesses, who testify that they have heard the accused say many things which are true, but do not know anything about the present charges. The judge is not interested in how many times he has spoken the truth, but will judge the defendant guilty on the testimony of these two truthful witnesses.
A thief has entered your house and stolen a clock. A person saw when the thief came out of the house with the clock. The thief was arrested and put on trial for stealing. There was one witness who saw that he stole the clock. The Court returns a verdict of guilty on the strength of the testimony of one witness. The case is the same here. We have not been investigating, how many times Mrs. White has spoken the truth, but we have found that she has said untruthful things time and again. And we have a right to demand that a prophet should speak the truth. A "thus saith the Lord" is more valuable to us than ten thousand "thus saith Mrs. White."
The Seventh-day Adventists boast that they are the only true church of Christ, because they have this woman among them. All other churches are Babylon and fallen, which have not "the testimony" of Jesus, the Spirit of prophecy (Mrs. White) among them.
Elder G. J. Butler writes (in "Sions Vaktare," Dec. 13, 1908) : "We have many years rejoiced over the benefits we have in possessing the testimony of Jesus, the Spirit of prophecy among us. This precious privilege we have had from the beginning of the message to the present time — a privilege the church has not had since the clays of the apostles." Mr. Butler calls Mrs. White a servant of the Lord.
"And I fell at his feet to worship him. And he said unto me, See thou do it not: I am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren that have the testimony of Jesus; worship God, for the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy." (Rev. 19:10.)
We propose now to expound the same text as the Adventists use, "The spirit of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy." This reminds us of a thing we already have pointed out, The doctor is physician, and the physician is doctor. But what is the business of the doctor or physician?
The angel who appeared before John said that he had the testimony of Jesus, and that it was the spirit of prophecy or the spirit of the prophecies, not excluding any truth or prophecy from beginning to end.
Jesus is the center in all the prophecies from the beginning till now. He was the Word, the Light, the Way, the Truth and the Life."
Some testimonies from the Bible are in order here. Jesus should arise from the stem of Jesse. (Isa. 11:1.) "I will raise unto David a righteous Branch and a King shall reign and prosper, and shall execute judgment and justice in the earth." (Jer. 23: 5.) In those days, and at that time, will I cause the Branch of righteousness to grow up unto David, and he shall execute judgment and righteousness in the land." (Jer. 33:15.)
We do not doubt the resurrection and ascension of Jesus. Why should the remaining testimonies of his coming again be more doubtful, and why should we not believe that this glorious chapter of the prophecy also will be fulfilled some time?
Of the testimony of Jesus, the spirit of prophecy, there remains to be fulfilled these two facts : the coming again of Jesus and the time when he shall sit on his father David's throne and execute judgment and righteousness in the land. When shall he execute judgment and righteousness in the land? Before, during, or after the thousand years? It cannot be before millennium. After the thousand years he shall give all to his Father — it cannot be then. This authority of Jesus must therefore be exercised during the thousand years. I will not take up this subject here, but have only made some suggestions. In Rev. 5:10 it is clearly stated that they shall reign on earth. When I read this verse in an open meeting I was three times called a liar by an Adventist, because Mrs. White has said different.
As we already have proved, the prophets of the Bible had the testimony of Jesus, and in the fullness of time he came himself, the true and faithful witness, the Lord Jesus Christ. All that he spoke was from the Father. The Pharisees objected that Jesus did not speak the truth (John 8:13), and they are the same today. What we expect of a witness is that ne shall speak the truth; and we believe that Jesus spoke the truth straight from the shoulder to the Pharisees, and so do his followers as far as they understand.
God is the fountain of all truth, and when Jesus came with his testimony, he received it from the Father. "I have many things to say and judge of you: but he that sent me is true; and I speak to the world those things which I have heard of him." (John 8:26.) Here is the testimony of God to the world through Jesus Christ.
"For I have not spoken of myself, but the Father which sent me, he gave me a commandment, what I should say, and what I should speak." (John 12:49.)
If the testimony of Jesus should continue, it was necessary that some should accept it. His disciples did so. "He that hath received his testimony hath set' to his seal that God is true." (John 3:33.)
The disciples believed that Jesus was the true light which should come into the world; therefore they received his testimony as God's own. Jesus said to them, "And ye also shall bear witness, because ye have been with me from the beginning." (John 15:27.)
Jesus had finished the work which God gave him to do. (John 17:4.) He promised his disciples to send them the Spirit of Truth, which proceeded from the Father; he should testify of Jesus. (John 15:26.) What a person testifies is his testimony, whether it is true or not.
Anyone who has read the Acts knows, how much Paul, the Apostle of Christ, had to suffer for the testimony of Jesus. He writes in his second epistle to Timothy (1:8-10) and asks him not to be ashamed of the testimony of our Lord for the sake of which he was a prisoner. It was this gospel that was foreordained in God's grace and mercy, before the world was made, but which now was made manifest through the revelation of Christ.
John gave his testimony in chapter 1:19, 20. But Jesus did not receive testimony from any man (John 5:34). "But I have a greater witness than that of John" (verse 36).
The disciples were going to be persecuted for their testimonies (Mark 13:9).
In 1 Cor. 2:1 Paul calls the word a testimony of God. "The testimony of Christ was confirmed in you." (1 Cor. 1:6.) When the apostles Peter and John stood before the great Council they bore testimony with great power of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ.
"He that believeth on the Son of God hath witness in himself. . . . And this is the record that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son." (1 John 5:10,11.)
"The commandment of the Lord is pure, enlightening the eyes" (Ps. 19:8). "For he established a testimony in Jacob, and appointed a law in Israel, which he commanded our fathers that they should make them known to their children: that the generations to come might know them, even the children which should be born; who should arise and declare them to their children" (Ps. 78:5,6). "Quicken me after thy loving kindness: so shall I keep the testimony of thy mouth" (Ps. 119:88). "And we have seen and do testify that the Father sent the Son to be the Saviour of the world" (1 John 4:14). "And he that saw it bear record, and his record is true: and he knoweth that he says true, that ye might believe" (John 19:35).
The Revelation — John was commanded to write this book when he was on the isle of Patmos.
He was sent to this island under the reign of the Roman emperor Domitian, between 81 and 96 after Christ. He had "borne record of the word of God, and of the testimony of Jesus Christ, and of all things that he saw" (Rev. 1:2). Therefore he was sent to this island, "for the word of God, and for the testimony of Jesus Christ" (verse 9). The island of Patmos is situated about eight miles from the coast of Asia Minor; it is an insignificant place, about one-twentieth the size of Chicago.
The souls that were seen under the altar had been "slain for the word of God, and for the testimony which they held" (6:9). "When the two witnesses shall have finished their testimony, the beast that ascendeth out of the bottomless pit shall make war against them" (11: 7). "And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them; and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus and for the word of God" (20:4).
"Ye are my witnesses," says Jesus. In a trial where several witnesses are to testify, some know more, others less in the case. What is expected of all is that they shall testify to what they have heard and seen. The judge weighs the evidence of all the witnesses, before he renders his verdict. If false witnesses have testified, the judge has been misled and he pronounces the innocent guilty. It is gratifying to us to know, that none can deceive the Judge whom God has appointed to judge the world. False prophets, Jesus says, shall appear in the last days and seduce many. This proves that they do exist. If those who believe that they are called to be witnesses for Christ would study the word of Christ, before they go out witnessing, there would be no need of books like this.
The truth of God, revealed in the holy Scripture, is the testimony of Jesus. This was first revealed through the prophets, for the Spirit of Christ was in them. Then it was revealed in its fullness and glory when the Lord Jesus was made the earth and proclaimed the wonderful counsels of God to men. The disciples received the testimony of Jesus directly from him. Others have received the testimony from the disciples. In this way the testimony of Jesus has arisen and been continued to our times.
Jesus promised to send his holy Spirit, who should lead them to the truth and remind them of all that he had said. And this was enough. His Spirit leads according to the word; and he who is led by the Spirit does not come with unscriptural interpretations and speculations in great number as Mrs. White has done. Here are some samples, "The angels sang a tune higher when Jesus promised his heavenly Father, that he should die for sinful man." — "The plan of salvation was laid after the fall." — "Satan was before the throne of God, since he was once ejected." — "Satan ejected before the fall." — "Satan wept when he could not come back to heaven," etc., etc.
The testimony of Jesus or the Spirit of prophecy therefore is, The eternal counsel of God to save mankind, revealed first through the prophets who were filled with the Spirit of Christ, afterwards through Christ, his apostles and all the believers.
According to the Adventist doctrine Jesus has not had any testimony to his church from the days of the apostles until Mrs. White appeared in the middle of the nineteenth century. We are, therefore, not permitted to count those who were slain and beheaded for the testimony of Jesus, who suffered martyrdom under the persecutions of the Roman Catholic church. They could not have been slain for the testimony of Jesus, as he had no testimony during that time! I will not advocate the theory with any degree of certainty, that the souls who John saw were those who died under these terrible persecutions. But we know from history that sixty to seventy-five million people suffered martyrdom during the dark ages for the testimony of Jesus. There were accordingly many millions who had the testimony of Jesus, whereas the Adventists say that Jesus did not have any testimony from the days of the apostles. How poor he was! The Lord Jesus had no testimony to the world for more than seventeen hundred years, till Mrs, White came with her superstitious notions; then they became "rich and need nothing and don't know, that they are wretched and miserable and poor and blind and naked: I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see." (Rev. 3:17, 18.)
The Adventists say, that they are the last congregation. Here the faithful and true witness has witnessed concerning them and shown them the real picture, and it is certainly nothing to boast of, as they are doing.
Adventists, if you had heeded the counsel, which the faithful and true witness has given you, and bought eyesalve to anoint your eyes, you would long before this have seen, that Mrs. White is a false prophetess and that your prophetical doctrine is built on sand only. If you had loved the truth, you would not after sixty-eight years be in the thickest darkness and still persist in believing that you are the only true church of God upon the earth. But when they don't love truth God shall send them great error, that they shall believe the lie. They have believed the lies of Mrs. White, and have therefore reached the condition in which they are. And it is so, because I know their system from beginning to end.
The measure which the Adventists lay upon all speakers is found in Isa. 8:20, "To the law and to the Testimony"; if they speak in harmony therewith, good and well, otherwise there is no light in them. Then they apply 3 John 10, 11, "Wherefore, if I come, I will remember his deeds which he doeth, prating against us with malicious words: and not content therewith, neither doth he himself receive the brethren, and forbiddeth them that would, and casteth them out of the church." They know pretty well how to fit the things together.
We are going to use the same measure, because it is the measurement of God, only we know how to use it. The Adventists use it and measure every persons words according to Mrs. White's nine great books (called testimonies), and if anyone speaks according to her words, there is a great light in him. We measure the light of a believer according to the word of God (the Bible) ; if he does not speak in harmony with it, there is no light in him; and if he speaks in harmony with Mrs. White there is no light in him, and we do not welcome him.
Does not Mrs. White say much that is truthful in her Testimonies? Yes. But we do not want to follow a prophet who does not speak the whole truth. Eat a ten course dinner, and mix poison in three or four of them, and you are a dead man. Mrs. White's doctrines contain a deadly poison for God's people. That is certain.
If they believe not the Testimonies (Mrs. White's nine books), but leave the Adventists, they go out in sin again; everybody seems to believe it, because Mrs. White has said so. Here is another falsehood. When Jesus did not come in 1844, as they expected, a great number fell back in sin again, especially those, who had been the most zealous advocates of the doctrine. Are we to be converted to God or to the doctrine? If those people had known the only true God and whom he has sent, Jesus Christ, they had not gone back to the world again. But they were converted to Miller's false doctrine, and when that failed, their hope was gone. Oh! what difference it makes to be converted to God and not to a doctrine without God!
We agree with everything that is true, but we do not want to accept wrong doctrines. It is true that some who have left them on account of their false views have gone back to their troughs of sin. They were converted to the doctrine, as the case was in 1844, and seeing that this was wrong, they have nothing certain to hold fast. What is the difference between being a sinner inside or outside of the church? When inside he pretends to be something that he is not, and is in such a case a hypocrite; if he comes out of it, there is some hope that he will consider his condition ; as long as he remains and they make him believe, that all is well, if he only believes "the present truth," he is absolutely deceived. When the Adventists are going to recite how badly those have turned out who have left them, they always mention some of the worst cases they know of, and they are held up as typical for all. But is this right? There are people who have left them who are just as good and godly as any within their own communion; but I have never heard them say anything good about those. As long as a person lives a righteous life it is of small importance whether he is inside or outside of the church, no one can accuse him. Many godly people can be found among them, though they do not understand their doctrines, and there are many who believe the doctrine and Mrs. White; if they were to find out their mistakes, they would become bankrupts spiritually and many would be despondent on account of their mistakes as Miller's followers were in 1844, when Jesus did not come. Oh, that they were able to lay aside the straight-jacket and put on the robe of righteousness! But that is impossible, as long as they are attached to this erroneous system.
That is what the Committee said in their protest against me, in which they pointed me out as a person who was only endeavoring to find faults.
We all have our faults, and I am no exception from the rule. It means a great deal to be so perfect that we do not offend in a word, as James says. But no one needs to search long for mistakes, when he is reading Mrs. White's views on prophecy, because they contain hardly anything but errors.
Let us illustrate this point. A farmer who wishes to sow wheat in his field is anxious to get the best kind of seeds. He therefore picks out very carefully all other seeds that may be mixed in his wheat. But however careful he has been to select only good grains of wheat, he found that weeds came up with the wheat. But let us now suppose that the man did not understand the difference between seeds of wheat and those of weeds, and put the seeds of weeds in his field. People commence to talk of the crop he is going to get. The owner still persists in believing that he is going to have a crop of wheat. An expert from an agricultural college is sent for to determine, whether it is wheat or weeds. Will the expert then have to investigate very long, before he finds the weeds, when the whole field is full of them? He asks the owner, "What have you sown here?" The owner answers, "This is first rate wheat." The expert asks him again, "Have you made a scientific study of farming?" He answers, "No, but I belong to a very ancient society, they have told me there that is the best kind of wheat; and they cannot be mistaken." The expert says to him, "You have sown weeds here that have a resemblance to wheat. You are deceived." At the same time he warns the man not to sell any seeds from his crop as wheat.
The man is indifferent to what the expert has said; and when he is ready he puts the seeds he has harvested in the market and sells it as pure wheat, because the members of his society have made him believe it is wheat. When he is selling his wheat another expert asks him, if he calls the seeds wheat. He answers, "Yes." The expert says, "You are mistaken. Come with me home, and I will freely show you the different kinds of seeds. You stand here deceiving people and may be arrested for dishonesty. You are selling seeds of weeds." Instead of investigating his seeds the weed man leaves the town and goes to another city to sell his wheat. Here he was arrested for dishonesty. The court asked him if he did not know what he was offering. "Yes, I have first rate wheat. Two experts have told me it is weeds, but I belong to a society sixty-nine years old, and the members have told me that this is the best kind of wheat and they cannot be mistaken." — "Have you graduated from any agricultural college?" — "No." The judge asks again, "Do you know that you are selling first class wheat on account of the great confidence you have in your society ?" — "Yes, I have confidence in the society, to which I belong." — "You sell the seeds as wheat because you think it is wheat; but you don't know it," says the judge. The man is put in jail, and the case is postponed for two weeks.
In the meantime some members of the society find that one of their number is arrested, because he has sold seeds of Weeds which, they believe is wheat. When the case is called thousands of the members of his society appear to defend him. All believe he is right; but nobody knows what wheat looks like — they have never investigated. The two experts are there, each bringing a box of wheat, and the judge understands what wheat looks like. The accused has also brought a box containing seeds from his field. The judge says, "All who have graduated from an agricultural school raise your hand." The judge and the two experts raise theirs. The accused has another opportunity to defend himself. He turns around to his thousand friends and says, "All of you who believe that I am right, please raise your hands." The whole audience raises its hands. The man feels safe when he has so many on his side. The trial begins. The two experts are first called to the witness stand and their testimonies agree, that "the best wheat" of our man is only weeds. The whole audience is now requested to swear that they shall testify to what they know, and nothing else. One after the other is summoned before the judge, and every one swears before God in heaven, that the accused has sold only wheat; but all admit that they do not understand it, but have believed it, because they had heard all the time that it was so. The many witnesses who had no actual knowledge could not help him with all the faith they had in the man and his goods. The judge says, "You have no excuse, as these experts warned you against selling your grain for wheat; for it is weeds, and they offered to teach you to discern between the various kinds of seeds, so you should not go out and deceive your fellows. If you had been an honest man, you should have examined the seeds before coming to this town; but instead it has been shown that you have warned your society against these experts. You have called them falsifiers who have done the work of the devil, because they have hindered your society to sell their weeds which they imagined were good wheat. Why have you not investigated this matter?" asks the judge.
"Your honor! These experts have belonged to our society before and left us, and since they parted company with us they have never left us alone; hence we have thought they were possessed by the evil one in order to hinder us from selling our wheat."
The judge says, "It has been proved that these men have the facts in the case, and that your society is wrong, no matter how old it is and how many you are. These men have done their duty and warned people against your humbug. I will give you a chance to repent. Go with these experts and learn the difference between the various kinds of grain. When you have found out, that you have sold weeds instead of wheat, owing to your ignorance, pay back, if possible, what you have stolen and confess your fault. If you cannot restore what you have taken, ask for pardon. Then tell your society about it. If your society will not listen to your words it is your duty to warn people against such a society, and let the world know what kind of business they are conducting. If you are brought before me again, I will punish you to the full extent of the law."
In this manner the Seventh-day Adventists have peddled their weeds in their ignorance for sixty-nine years. But as they see how one after the other leaves them on account of their false doctrines, they ought to examine their theology. They are without excuse before God. They can no longer shield themselves under "times of ignorance." When the Lord says that the plan of salvation was laid before the fall of oar first parents, Mrs. White says it was laid after. If this error is pointed out, her defenders say, she did not mean it, probably the printer's mistake, or the fault of her secretary. You only look for mistakes, you are a critic. You are serving the devil, perverting the truth. You are fighting against the prophetess of the Lord, etc. These and similar accusations are hurled against those who point out their false prophecies.
If the Adventists sought the truth and wanted to walk in the truth, they should examine the points or the foundation, upon which their peculiar doctrines rest. If the foundation is false, then the whole superstructure is untenable. They ought to admit what is proved to be right and leave that which they cannot understand, till they get more light. That would be honest.
I have never been more blessed than in writing this book. I am sure I am doing the work the Lord wants me to do, though the Adventists say that I am opposing the prophetess of God and pervert the truth.
The Committee complained that Mrs. White cannot defend herself as I am attacking her in the Swedish language. But the Committee is not ignorant of the fact that my circulars have been translated to English and have been sent to Mrs. White. Besides these circulars I have once sent her a registered letter, reading as follows,
Chicago, May 29, 1912.
Mrs. Ellen G. White,
Dear Madam: —
Some years ago I belonged to the church of the Seventh-day Adventists, but having studied their doctrinal system together with the prophecies of Daniel I have found that they are in perfect darkness with reference to the prophecies. They have never had any prophetical message to the world; the foundation is laid on the sand, and as you are the chief cause of their spiritual darkness, the Lord has moved me by his Spirit to send you this letter that your blood will not be required at my hand. (Ez. 3:18-20.) After you have read the enclosed circular on Daniel's 8th chapter, it is easy for you to see that the 2,300 days in Daniel 8:14, which you say is the hub of the wheel in your message, could not commence before the latter part of Alexander's divided kingdom, between 176 — 30 B. C. and not 457 B. C. as the Adventists say. I know you are an elderly lady, but as long as you can think, it is easy for you to see, that the 2,300 days could not begin before the little horn. The little horn exercised great power and did not appear until after 175 B.C. (Dan. 8:23.)
When you have seen this, I ask you in God's name to retract in the paper this great error before you leave the world. This is probably the most serious and significant letter you ever have received.
With love for yourself and your misled people,
1050 Wellington Ave.