The White Lie!

By Walter T. Rea

Chapter 6: Sources from Which She Drew (More or Less) The Desire of Ages

If Patriarchs and Prophets was the cornerstone of Adventist theology The Desire of Ages was the keystone in the arch of Adventist thinking and Christological views. In the preface of volume two (1877) of its forerunner, The Spirit of Prophecy, it was said:

When the Publishers issued the first volume of this work, they felt that it supplied a want long realized by the Christian world, in illuminating a subject which is of great interest to the Christian mind, the relation of the son of God to the Father, and his position in Heaven, together with the fall of man and the Mediatorship of Christ between him and his Creator.

In this second volume the author continues with renewed interest the subject of the mission of Christ, as manifested by his Miracles and Teachings. The reader will find that this book furnishes invaluable aid in studying the lessons of Christ set forth in the Gospels. The author, as a religious writer and speaker, has labored for the public during more than twenty Years. Being aided in the study of the Scriptures, and her work as a religious teacher, by the special enlightenment of the Spirit of God, she is peculiarly qualified to present the facts of the Life and Ministry of Christ, in connection with the divine plan of human redemption, and to practically apply the lessons of Jesus to the simple duties of life [italics added].

One of the most pleasing features of this book is the plain and simple language with which the author clothes thoughts that glow with truth and beauty. 1

A lot of trouble and embarrassment would have been avoided in years to come if a few others than the "Spirit of God" had gotten some credit. Although the Scriptures do make it plain that every good and perfect gift comes from God, some of Ellen's gifts of writing were found to have come through quite a few human sources. In the late 1970s Robert W. Olson, for the White Estate (which is always pushed to keep its readers and the church members up to date on such things), issued a rather late concession that Ellen had indeed been peeking at the work of other authors when she wrote The Desire of Ages:

Ellen White's indebtedness to other authors has long been acknowledged by Seventh-day Adventists....

The exact extent of Ellen White's borrowings in The Great Controversy is not known....

Studies by Raymond Cottrell and Walter Specht have shown that Ellen White borrowed about 2.6 percent of her words in The Desire Of Ages from William Hanna's Life of Christ .... However, W. C. White and Marian Davis both mention other books on Christ's life which Ellen White used. It is also evident that she borrowed from some works not named by W. C. White or Miss Davis, such as John Harris's The Great Teacher....

Ellen White's literary borrowing was not limited to the three books discussed above....

Ellen White can hardly be called a "copyist" since she almost invariably rewrites, rephrases, and improves on the original author when she does use another's material....

Concerning the writing of The Desire of Ages in particular, W. C. White states

"Previous to her work of writing on the Life of Christ and during the time of her writing to some extent, she read from the works of Hanna, Fleetwood, Farrar, and Geikie. I never knew of her reading Edersheim. She occasionally referred to Andrews."-W. C. White to L. E. Froom, January, ????

Comparison of The Desire of Ages with the various lives of Christ available in her day show that she drew, more or less [italics supplied] not only from the authors mentioned above by W. C. White, but from March, Harris, and others as well. 2

Olson's article, which may be one of the most revealing concessions to date by the White Estate, deserves detailed study. Had it been circulated, or even leaked, to the general public and the church at large (which it hasn't as I write), this book might not have been written. Often only the "insider" gleaning so­called "top secret" information knows where to send for what-if he is privileged to know that such information exists at all.

To write or say that "Ellen White's indebtedness to other authors has long been acknowledged by Seventh­day Adventists" is only an extension of the white lie. Although it is technically true that, as far back as the 1880s, the church has been righting a rear guard action concerning the use of others' material in the name of God and Ellen, the declarations have always been made with defensiveness and quick justification.

William S. Peterson's article in a Spectrum issue of 1971, for example, was to bring down upon him a chorus of spiritual invectives that, in the language of the truck driver or stevedore, would curl the paint on any container at thirty paces. That Ellen had borrowed just was not so, it was said From that autumn issue until the 1980s the journal has carried continuing charges and counter charges, denials and counter denials that try to refute any suggestion that she would have incorporated anyone's vocabulary or been influenced in any of her writing. 3

Not until Neal C. Wilson, president of the General Conference, wrote the eighteen members of the special Glendale Committee set up to review the amount of certain findings about Ellen's "borrowing" were the readers of the Adventist Review to learn that she had used the works of others for "descriptive, biographical, historical, spiritual, and scientific information." 4 As one member of the committee was to point out to Wilson, "That hardly seems to leave much except direct revelation. Is that the issue the panel is to decide?" 5 Surely the personnel of the White Estate must have known all along that most of the church has been uniformed about the amount and extent of her "borrowing."

At least a great many church scholars who have tried to pry loose White Estate historical material that would help in making comparisons with others' writings know they have received very little help and encouragement from those guarding the sacrosanct vault of the Estate. The policy of "selective revelation" (that is, the Estate selects what may be revealed) has had such a hold that only when members of the Clan pass from the scene may the church expect access to information that may reveal the truth. Time and again the men from that office, while riding the national circuit-which they do rather often to help quiet the restless natives-have had to meet the question of why the vault cannot be open to all researchers and information made available to friend and foe alike, and why picking and choosing is always left to the Clan Plan.

The 1980 "Adventist Review" article:

Even those who might have had their own key to the vault (so to speak) found It fascinating that the shut door might have a possibility of being opened even a little. Donald R. McAdams, himself a competent researcher on Ellen and her writings, sounded a hopeful note over just such prospects in an article in Spectrum in 1980:

In the March 20, 1980, Adventist Review in an article entitled "This I Believe About Ellen G. White " Neal Wilson informed the church about the Rea [Glendale] Committee. The initial report indicates that "in her writing Ellen White used sources more extensively than we have heretofore been aware of or recognized...." [italics added.]

The statement is a most significant article to appear in the Review in this century. The president of the General Conference is openly and honestly acknowledging the facts about Ellen White's use of sources and pointing the church toward a definition of inspiration that will be new to most Adventists an threatening to some. A full response to Walter Rea must wait until he as presented his evidence to the church in definitive written form. 6

Inevitably McAdams would react as he did, because he is an honest historian who himself spent much time in 1972­73 examining a chapter of The Great Controversy, comparing a chapter of it with half a chapter of historian James A. Wylie, and finding irrefutable evidence of dependence. The interesting and significant part of this story, as he tells It, is that the White Estate would not allow this church historian to release his work or conclusions to the church or the world. 7

McAdams had another reason to be concerned about what was taking place. He was one of the members of the special Glendale Committee to whom Wilson wrote. He had seen some of the evidence, had heard the January 28­29, 1980, presentation, and had himself stated to his colleagues that the evidence was indeed "startling. He had even suggested that "if every paragraph in The Great Controversy were footnoted in accordance with proper procedure, almost every paragraph would be footnoted." It is of interest that those committee members present from the White Estate did not challenge him. 9

How could they? They were sitting there with privileged information. Ronald D. Graybill, assistant secretary of the White Estate was present at the meeting. He too had been working in the files and had completed in May 1977 a comparison of Ellen White and her close paraphrasing of another historian, Merle d'Aubigne. As he continued his study, what should appear to his wondering eyes-not d'Aubigne at all, but a popularized version of d'Aubigne prepared by the Reverend Charles Adams for young readers, and this material had been published first, not in The Great Controversy, but in the October 11,1883, Signs of the Times article entitled "Luther in the Wartburg. The conclusions of this rather simple cloak­and­dagger story were, as McAdams quotes Graybill:

There does not appear to be any objective historical fact in Mrs. White's account that she could not have gained from the literary sources on which she was drawing, except in one detail: ... The over all impression gained from this study by this researcher is that it sustains McAdams' main point- that the objective and mundane historical narrative was based on the work of historians, not on visions.

So why didn't we say so in the first place? The nearest that we had ever come to that type of acknowledgment was from son Willie White (letter of 4 November 1912):

When writing out the chapters for Great Controversy, she sometimes gave a partial description of an important historical event, and when her copyist who was preparing the manuscripts for the printer, made inquiry regarding time and place, Mother would say that those things are recorded by conscientious historians. Let the dates used by those historians be inserted. At other times in writing out what had been presented to her, Mother found such perfect descriptions of events and presentations of facts and doctrines written out in our denominational books, that she copied the words of these authorities. 12

Willie's statements would be modified in a 1969 statement by his son Arthur: "Mrs. White ever sought to avoid being influenced by others." 13

There was another member of the White Estate group who likewise sat quietly through that January 1980 meeting without tipping his hand. He was Robert W. Olson, appointed to head the White Estate on the retirement of Arthur L. White in 1978. Olson, more than perhaps anyone else in the room except W. Richard Lesher (the head of the Adventist Biblical Research Institute) knew where some of the bodies were buried, because some of those bodies were being resurrected faster than the burying services could be performed.

In 1977 and 1978 Olson received a number of letters that were opening new avenues of information on the relationship of Ellen to her book Patriarchs and Prophets. To Olson, the research had taken a nasty turn as it began to get close to The Desire of Ages. When he was asked about the persistent rumor that Ellen had received some rather human help in the preparation of Desire, he didn't seem to recall the letters or materials that he was getting except to express that the report of help was overdrawn and there was no reason to believe that The Desire of Ages was anything but the work of Ellen White. 14

He knew well that the trail to Ellen's "borrowing" was getting warm, for he had written a remarkable letter concerning it to the Estate staff on November 29, 1978, just two years before the meeting where he was now denying that any problem existed. The letter was a sensitive one and was not for public notice. To ensure fairness, I include the entire letter in the appendix section of this chapter. Portions are given here:

About eight or ten months ago Elder Rea sent me a copy of some of his research which in his opinion showed that Ellen White was highly dependent upon Edersheim for some of the things she had written in Desire of Ages, as well as for the very organization of the book itself, and the use of many chapter titles.

I wrote to Elder Rea at the time and asked him not to move forward with any plans for publishing his findings until I had a chance to talk to him personally at the Southern California Conference Camp Meeting to be held late in July 1978. To this suggestion Elder Rea readily agreed. When I attended the camp meeting near Palmdale, California, last July, I spent several hours talking with Elder Rea and obtained his consent to withhold the advertising of his work on any kind of a broad scale until we had had opportunity ourselves to look at it first.... Elder Rea has agreed to give us What ever time we need before he takes any further steps on his own....

Through Jim Nix at Loma Linda and Ed Turner at Andrews University, I have learned of someone in the Loma Linda area who is making comparisons between the Desire of Ages, and Hanna's book on "The Life of Christ." Jim Nix told me that he saw Hanna's book and that it is heavily underlined m both red and blue and that this is supposed to be the very copy of the book which was used in the White Estate office when Mrs. White was preparing her book The Desire of Ages. Jim Nix has Xeroxed a copy of this book and sent it to us, so we have it here in our office.... [Italics added.]

Ed also told me about a professional man, a dentist as I recall, who lived m the Victorville area....This professional man recently had access to Hanna's "Life of Christ," and after reading it, told Ed that it practically "blew his mind" to see the close resemblance that he discovered between Hanna and Ellen White. 15

The solution suggested by this man of God, sworn to disseminate truth and light, was as follows:

The only alternative [of four outlined] which seems sensible to me is the last one. It will cost the White Estate nothing for Jim's [Cox] time, and I do believe that we can stay close enough to him so that the conclusions he arrives at would be essentially the same as the conclusions we would come to were we doing the work ourselves. We could ask Jim to make a report every two or three weeks to a committee. 16

Later it was explained at the Glendale Committee meeting that the letter was only a poor selection of words and their meaning could be misconstrued. 17 There was no misconstruing Arthur White's words, however, when he wrote at the same time on the same subject to the same group:

Keep in mind that the training in the universities to accept and believe only that which can be proved to the satisfaction of the researcher can easily lead to a skeptical approach which does not take into account that there may be disturbing features in inspired writings, resulting in the need of faith as made clear by Ellen White as she discussed investigations of the Bible and her writings...

"All who look for hooks to hang their doubts upon will find them...."

"Distrust of God is the natural outgrowth of the unrenewed heart...."

"Satan has ability to suggest doubts and devise objections to the pointed testimony that God sends.

From The Great Controversy, p. 527; Testimonies, vol. 5, p. 675. 18

One can close his eyes and hear that door clanging shut again still tighter, while the lost riders of fear and guilt go charging through the sky. It did not sound like an open­door policy when he continued:

If participated in by Andrews University-are the scholars trained in methods of research by universities known to have demolished faith in the Bible and its dependability of Biblical accounts, capable of passing proper judgment in areas where absolute honesty in the acceptance of records and faith based on evidence are important factors? In making decisions when multiple choices are before the researcher will faith in Ellen White's inspiration fail? 19

It would be difficult to conclude from these two confidential missives that the people of the Adventist Church are encouraged to know all the truth about Ellen-including her skill in using others' material minus credit lines for her own works.

One further bit of information needs to be added to the picture to make it complete. Robert Olson was sitting through the meetings of the Glendale Committee with an ancient but haunting document virtually on his lap. It had been "discovered" only a few weeks before in the hall of the Estate offices by Desmond Ford in his search for truth. It was so revealing that had Olson read it or used it in the meeting the session might have been shortened by half a day or more. It came from the pen of W. W. Prescott (an earlier long­time leader and former General Conference vice president of the Adventist Church) who turned over some rocks himself. The letter was dated April 6 1915 and was written to Ellen's son Willie with whom Prescott from the contents of the letter had worked long end hard:

It seems to me that a large responsibility rests upon those of us who know that there are serious errors in our authorized books and yet make no special effort to correct them. The people and our average ministers trust us to furnish them with reliable statements and they use our books as sufficient authority in their sermons but we let them go on year after year asserting things which we know to be untrue. I cannot feel that this is right. It seems to me that we are betraying our trust and deceiving the ministers and people. It appears to me that there is much more anxiety to prevent a possible shock to some trustful people than to correct error.

Your letter indicates a desire on your part to help me but I fear that it is a little late. The experience of the last six or eight years and especially the things concerning which I talked with you have had their effect on me in several ways. I have had some hard shocks to get over and after giving the best of my life to this movement I have little peace and satisfaction in connection with it and I am driven to the conclusion that the only thing for me to do IS to do quietly what I can do conscientiously and leave the others to go on without me. Of course this [is] far from a happy ending to my life­work but this seems to be the best adjustment that I am able to make. The way your mother's writings have been handled and the false impression concerning them which is still fostered among the people have brought great perplexity and trial to me. It seems to me that what amounts to deception through probably not intentional has been practiced in making some of her books and that no serious effort has been made to disabuse the minds of the people of what was known to be their wrong view concerning her writings. But it is no use to go into these matters. I have talked with you for years about them but it brings no change. I think however that we are drifting toward a crisis which will come sooner or later and perhaps sooner. A very strong feeling of reaction has already set in. 20

Evidence related later shows why Prescott was even more concerned than his letter indicates. He himself with the blessing of other officers had helped write some of the very books he was complaining about. How could he in good conscience (we have no evidence that he was not a man of good conscience) let the church go on believing that what he and others had helped to write in the name of devotional material was now to be received as the final authoritative voice of God and to become the basis of Adventist worldwide Christology (itself a subject that was of special interest to Prescott).

It is now evident-from the information that the White Estate possesses and from materials being leaked from other sources-that the church is in trouble in the matter of Ellen and her shoplifting. Too much is being identified from the places where she had shopped. As McAdams wrote in his Spectrum article:

About the time the White Estate was responding to the evidence that Ellen White had borrowed extensively from the Protestant historians m the preparation of The Great Controversy, another researcher was bringing to their attention evidence that she also borrowed from secular authors for other books in the Conflict of the Ages series especially Prophets and Kings and The Desire of Ages. Walter Rea pastor of the Long Beach California Church asserted on the basis of inconclusive evidence presented m several unpublished papers that the major source for Prophets and Kings was Bible History: Old Testament by Alfred Edersheim originally published in seven volumes between 1876 and 1877 and that Edersheim s The Life and Times of Jesus, the Messiah, first published in 1883 was a major source for The Desire of ages....

Now the growing awareness in Adventist circles of Walter Rea's research and the studies of The Great Controversy called for another response in the Review.

Judging from the samples used by Arthur White to illustrate Ellen White's relationship with Hanna in articles 4, 6 and 7 he must have already had available to him the very thorough and careful study by Walter Specht. Desiring to know the truth about Ellen White's sources for The Desire of Ages and not wishing to be caught unprepared by the research of Walter Rea or someone else, the White Estate commissioned two eminent Adventist scholars to study thoroughly the relationship of The Desire of Ages to William Hanna's The Life of Our Lord. Raymond F. Cottrell longtime book editor at the Review and Herald Publishing Association took the first 45 chapters; and Walter F. Specht professor of New Testament at Loma Linda University took chapters 46 to 86. 21

With the assigning of Cottrell and Specht to the task of Ellen's The Desire of Ages, the church was throwing the heavies into the breach. It was thoroughly understood in high places that if the flood tide of facts and information washed away the foundation of The Desire of Ages, then the keystone in Saint Ellen's arch would be seriously jeopardized and the white lie exposed. Not everywhere was this understood but many leaders were well aware and very apprehensive.

It was a calculated risk, therefore, when the Adventists summoned two of their finest from retirement back to the war. The credentials of the two were impeccable. Cottrell, a third­generation Adventist, had served the church in various high­level capacities, including that of book editor at the Review and Herald, most of his life. Specht had been known as a scholar, department chairman, and dean at some of the church's finest institutions. Both men would be expected to bring to the task not only their lifetime of experience but their integrity as well.

The report issued at the end of six months of study was a shocker- not so much for what it said as for what it revealed by what it did not emphasize. The very fact that such high­level input was used showed that the church as a whole had not known about the white lie and that the leaders were determined to see that the church received only information that was acceptable to those leaders.

Both men would take the high road in the report. Specht, while conceding that Hanna had been used by Ellen throughout both the early edition of The Spirit of Prophecy (volumes two and three) and the later edition of The Desire of Ages, concluded that he still liked Ellen's paraphrasing of Hanna better than Hanna's own work. 22 Although he had found that the copying from Hanna had begun at the beginning and ended at the ending, he felt that the matter was not as serious as some had made it.

Cottrell, less cautious, calculated that 2.6 percent of Hanna had been taken by Ellen. 23 To obtain these incredible figures, he showed the kind of "creative bookkeeping" he had used.

Attention was given to the possibility that Ellen White may have relied to some extent on Hanna for the passages of Scripture she quotes, and/or for the order in which she sometimes introduces them. Two considerations, however, preclude the possibility of any firm conclusion with respect to any relatedness in the Scriptures quoted....

Furthermore, White and Hanna both used the King James Version of the Bible...probably m editions with marginal references.... Also, both probably used the same concordance. . . to locate related Bible passages. Thus even if neither writer ever saw what the other wrote, they would both be likely to refer to other passages of Scripture in approximately the same order Beyond this, two persons equally familiar with the Bible would find much the same related passages of Scripture coming to mind, and introduce them in approximately the order suggested by the Gospel narrative....

To me. . . these facts. . .suggest that any similarity between the passages of Scripture cited, or the order in which they occur, is at least largely, if not entirely coincidental and completely useless for determining whether, or to what extent, Ellen White made use of Hanna...

Only where both writers use identical or unusual words in such a sequence could literary relatedness be established beyond a doubt. [italics added.] 24

Cottrell had fallen into the trap from which Francis D. Nichol had never extricated himself-using the study to prove that Ellen had not directly "quoted" from others as much as had been said. He seemed to overlook the fact that paraphrasing is the most subtle and potentially deceptive form of copying. Even McAdams said in his Spectrum article:

Indeed, there are some closely paraphrased paragraphs and other paragraphs where, although Ellen White's words are different, It is clear she is following the ideas presented by Hanna. [Italics added.] 25

After endeavoring to diminish the influence of other authors on the writing of The Desire of Ages, Cottrell did concede:

Nevertheless, there are numerous instances of clear literary correlation which prove conclusively that Ellen White made use of some of the words, phrases, ideas and thought sequence. 26

In answer to his statement that "in no instance did either Dr. Specht or I find even one sentence in DA identical with LC, or even substantially so," 27 I suggest that the reader see the exhibit section for this chapter. 28 Better yet, one should obtain a copy of Hanna from a library and enlighten himself in person.

Although the text of the report as a whole was not given wide circulation; the 2.6 percent figure was quoted and repeated everywhere. Adventists grabbed onto it like a drowning man would clutch a life jacket and head for shore shouting he was saved. In reality, the study was so limited in scope that some of the most serious matters remain to be dealt with. For example:

a. The church as a whole has indeed not known the extent of the white lie-and "the brethren" are not anxious to have the members know.

b. At least as early as the 1870s, and as late as the early 1900s, Ellen and her helpers were deeply and widely involved in drawing material from the writings of others.

c. If even Cottrell's percentage (however accurate it might be) were to be extended to the ever­growing list of authors identified as having been used by Ellen and her helpers, the church and their prophet would be seen to be in enormous trouble and something would seam unraveling.

d. Ellen's use of Hanna, and other sources as well, was not "selected revelation," with God's permission, to fill in a scene here and there to help a fading prophet's memory, but was a running commentary and paraphrase of each passage or chapter selected-often with pauses for a personal homily, but likewise often expanding that homily to be strikingly similar to the devotional material of the author copied. 29

e. Perhaps the most damaging evidence emerging is that whatever help Ellen had, human or divine, she had uncanny ability to go back and pick up new material each time the return was made. Sometimes the thoughts, words, and sentences that had been taken from one author in the early stages (1870­84) were deleted in the later product (The Desire of Ages). Sometimes an amplification of the same author's material was substituted. But sometimes (especially when the early copying had been extensive) material would be drawn from other sources or other authors in such a way that the color of the new threads did not clash with the ultimate pattern of the fabric being woven through the years. Clearly, the human planners knew well the maps they were using for all the trips of all those years. 30

However, by nature and practice an honest scholar, Cottrell later allowed his integrity to overcome his Adventist heritage and prejudice. His silence was broken on September 19, 1981, when the Los Angeles Times, in an article by John Dart, religious editor, quoted from an upcoming missive by Cottrell:

The combination of Ford's and Rea's research and treatment of the two men by church administrators presents a crisis "with the very real threat of schism in the church we love,' according to a leading Adventist biblical scholar, Raymond F. Cottrell. Cottrell, book editor for more than 30 years for the Adventist Review, blamed church administrators for the "Ford­Rea crisis" in an article for an upcoming issue of the independent journal Spectrum, published by the reform­minded Adventist Forums.

Ford and Rea "are both friends of the church, not enemies, despite the fact that, in both cases, the wisdom of some of their tactics may be open to question," Cottrell wrote. To future historians, Cottrell continued, "the Ford­Rea crisis will appear as the logical, perhaps inevitable, climax to nearly a century of burying the issues to which they have recently called attention, under the denominational rug." 31

Cottrell's preliminary draft itself ("Our Present Crisis: Reaction to a Decade of Obscurantism") was even more specific and devastating for Its finger pointing, as it went on to say:

The only new elements are Ford's extended application of the apotelesmatic principle, which everyone in the church follows to some extent, and Rea's demonstration of the extent of Ellen White's literary dependence. There is documentary evidence of the fact that our Bible scholars were well aware of all the exegetical problems our traditional interpretation of Daniel and Hebrews conjures up, at least twenty­five years ago, and also of Ellen White's literary dependence. But repeated, positively motivated attempts during the intervening years (ninety and seventy­five years respectively)' often by competent Bible scholars whose loyalty to the church cannot be questioned, the church has consistently, officially, and more or less effectively buried, and in some instances the people who presumed to ask the questions, as well. 32

And finally he laid the blame on specific administrators:

The decade 1969 to 1979 provides the immediate historical background of our present dilemma. Prior to this decade our Bible scholars were quietly at work on these problems, individually and in scholarly circles, fully aware of the fact that the church was approaching a crisis concerning which it was at best but dimly aware. In my personal tales, accumulated over the years, ~s extensive contemporary documentation of what was being done, and of official General Conference measures to stifle this scholarly investigation. This record of well­intentioned obfuscation is vital to an understanding of our present dilemma because it was this more than any other single factor that led Ford and Rea, and especially Ford, to "go public" with their questions. Their present course of action is a response to obfuscation, not a gratuitous attempt to embarrass the church. The church itself is basically responsible for the crisis, not Ford or Rea!

Most of the following incidents during the decade 1969 to 1979 can be documented from my personal files. For the few items not covered in my personal files documentary evidence is available elsewhere, and/or other persons can verify the facts.

It was Robert H. Pierson's announced policy as president of the General Conference that administrators, and not Bible scholars or theologians, were to make theological decisions for the church. Over these years he reiterated this policy to individuals and to General Conference committees, and implemented it in his appointment of non­scholars (particularly Willis Hackett and Gordon Hyde) to ride herd on the Adventist scholarly community, to govern the Biblical Research Committee and the Geoscience Advisory Committee, and in his restructuring of these committees in a way designed to assure effective administrative control over them. 33

Cottrell was only one of the many runners with more bad news for the church in its crisis. Fred Veltman, according to the Adventist Review in the fall of 1980, was the man upon whose shoulders the mantle of truth was to rest. Because of the disturbance of the Rea study, reported the Review:

After careful examination of the data, it [the January 28­29, 1980, Glendale Committee] concluded that Ellen White's use of sources had been more extensive than we had realized and recommended that a scholar framed m literary analysis undertake a thoroughgoing study of The Desire of Ages. This suggestion was adopted by the General ­Conference. Already Dr. Fred Veltman, a New Testament scholar on the faculty of Pacific Union College, is engaged full time in the project, which is expected to take about two years. 34

After surveying the material on the Ellen G. White controversy available to him, Veltman had written a detailed critique for the Presidents Executive Advisory Committee in Washington. In that report he quoted that same Raymond Cottrell as saying:

Walter Rea's evidence and his conclusions will be and are most damaging to the faith of our membership in EGW.

To say that "I saw" and similar expressions refer to cognizance and not to heavenly origins of the content of the visions is asking people to disbelieve what they have been taught all their lives. The obvious reading of the expression in its context would have you understand a heavenly source for the vision. This explanation forces the people to conclude that EGW's integrity cannot be assumed. 35

Edward Heppenstall, a long­time Adventist theologian, is likewise quoted by Veltman:

Walter's material will have a shattering effect upon the church membership Many of the answers now being offered are not really satisfying to those who have looked at the data. 36

Even Desmond Ford, the Australian theologian, gives a devastating summary as reported in Veltman's words:

Des does not believe that EGW intended to deceive. At the same time he cannot agree to the positions being taken or already held in the church that EGW writings are an extension of the canon, are authoritative for church doctrine, and are inerrant.

Des views Walter Rea as being reluctant to publish and desiring to go with the brethren if they will only take the issue and the evidence seriously. 37

Veltman himself concludes:

The answers which the church spokesman give as Walter raises the questions are for the most part not a equate. In addition, the credibility of the church leaders drops with each new release. The church is continually taken by surprise and on the defensive. And each point the church admits is a "score" for Walter. The church should be on the front lines doing the study and informing the church when the data has been carefully evaluated. What IS so hard to understand is why the church is unwilling to work with Walter when he is willing to work with the church.

Walter is dedicated to get to the bottom of the problem and to let the church know. He does not want another generation to go through his personal agony of disillusionment. This for Walter is a non­negotiable and it is hard to fault him on his conviction in view of the evidence and the history of this problem in the church.

The question over the "I was showns" is probably the hardest one to answer. 38

The leaders of the church indeed found it hard to face reality, but it was obvious that something must be done, and done quickly. So, as always, the tired old men from PREXAD (the President's Executive Advisory Committee) and the White Estate, turned to the source they so often deny their members-the law. It seemed to be their last hope of quelling the storm which would not go away and for which they were unprepared.

SDA Church lawyer determines that White was not legally guilty of plagiarism because of the time in which she lived

The September 17, 1981 Review, heralded that their Catholic lawyer had declared that. Ellen White was not legally a plagiarist according to the lawyer's definition, and therefore her works did not constitute copyright infringement. 39 This report-clearly not coming to grips with the moral, spiritual, or theological implications at the heart of the matter-drew very little comfort and brought few sighs of relief from knowledgeable readers.

To add to all the confusion, Arthur Delafield, another tired but willing warrior, was called back to the fray. Delafield, who had been a circuit rider for the White Estate for over twenty­five years, wrote a reply to a letter from a lay member in Australia. In addition to raising questions, this layman had stated a conviction:

I must admit to feeling, at times, somewhat angered and disillusioned. Not with Walter Rea but with the "system." The question is not how to silence or to discredit Waiter Rea (or Forum, or anybody else for that matter), but whether what he says is true. I can live with the truth about Ellen White, but 1 would find it difficult to be enthusiastic about belonging to, let alone supporting and promoting, an organization which relied on falsehoods or intimidation in order to survive.

Delarleld's reply was a thriller. In typical pontifical style he declared:

Your letter of May 27 addressed to the president of the General Conference has arrived in this office. Elder Wilson certainly wishes to be remembered to you with warm brotherly feelings. His Administrative Assistant, Arthur Patzer, has asked that I respond since I have spent 25 years in the Ellen G. White Estate offices as one of the secretaries and now made a life­time trustee of the White Estate board....

Walter [Rea] has spent more time looking for parallels in the writings of Ellen White with non­inspired sources than anyone outside of the White Estate. He has placed these parallels side by side and the weight of evidence would seem to indicate that Ellen White was almost a creature of her times - a plagiarizer with enormous capacity for incorporating the writings of others in her own written messages and getting credit for it herself.

I say that the foregoing would seem to be what Walter Rea has proven. The careful researcher, however ... is greatly distressed by Walter Rea's "evidence." I say this not because there is so much, but because he thinks there is so much of it and he is wrong. Dreadfully wrong. He has grossly exaggerated the situation. 41

Finally, his punch line came on page five:

I highly respect many of our Seventh­day Adventist theologians. I have sat at their feet and been taught by them. I admire and respect them highly. I would like to remind you, however, that you can search the Bible from Genesis to Revelation and you will not find a single text marking out theologians as having the gift of the Holy Spirit. The Scriptures indicate, however, that prophets have a gift of the holy Spirit. Ellen White had that gift and she was canonical insofar as doctrinal interpretation authority is concerned [italics added].42

Inasmuch as Delafield, now retired, was writing his reply on official General Conference stationery and invoking the name of the head divine of the church, Neal C. Wilson, as his authority for writing, it would seem that "the church" had finally unofficially rejected their controversial stand taken some twenty­four years before, when under some controversy and duress a "representative group of Seventh­day Adventist leaders, Bible teachers and editors" had declared through the official Adventist press:

We would note...

1. That we do not regard the writings of Ellen G White as an addition to the sacred canon of Scripture.

2. That we do not think of them as of universal application, as is the Bible, but particularly for the Seventh­day Adventist Church.

3. That we do not regard them in the same sense as the Holy Scriptures, which stand alone and unique as the standard by which all other writings must be judged.

Seventh­day Adventists uniformly believe that the canon of Scripture closed with the book of Revelation. We hold that all other writings and teachings, from whatever source, are to be judged by, and are subject to, the Bible, which Is the spring and norm of the Christian faith. We test the writings of Ellen G. White by the Bible, but in no sense to do we test the Bible by her writings....

We have never considered Ellen C. White to be in the same category as the writers of the canon of scripture [emphasis added].43

Despite the best efforts of the 1957 "representative group" who had published the foregoing statements in Questions on Doctrine, now, in the old warrior's 1981 letter the blueprint of the past's extreme and paranoid views had finally come clear. Adventists, through tired old men, were telling the world that despite all the double­talk of the past and the deceptions of the present, they do indeed cast their lot with Ellen as their final authority, their first among equals. Through him, they, In effect, are proud to tell the world they represent a sect and are not about to become associated with non­members of their cult or any of the rest of the Christian community!

Truth has a way of eluding a "true believer" when the church spokesmen seem to be willing to overlook most of the information, most of its friendly critics, and all of the evidence In their endeavor to hide from reality.

Even another statement that surfaced from no less than W. C. White, Ellen's son, did not change the view that all she said must have come from God. In 1905 he was supposed to have said:

Some of the most precious chapters of Desire of Ages are made up of matter first written in letters to men laboring under trying circumstances, for the purpose of cheering and instructing them regarding their work. Some of these beautiful lessons about Christian experience illustrated m the life of our Saviour, were first written in letters to my brother Edson, when he was struggling with many difficulties in his work in Mississippi. Some were written first to Elder Corliss, when he was holding a discussion with a wily Campbellite in Sydney. Note: Sister White wrote on original copy of this manuscript In her own handwriting the following words: I have read this. It is correct." 44

But is was no use. There would always be those who would say if Ellen touched it, or saw it, or was even aware of it--it had to come from God and was all inspired! Even that statement of oft­quoted by the Adventists that some librarian from the hallowed halls of the Library of Congress had designated The Desire of Ages one of the ten most impressive books on the life of Christ was found to have been muttered by some Adventist preacher on the way to work. But knowing this would not shake loose the true believer. Of such things are the white lies of this life made.

Books Written by White: Sources from Which She Drew:
White, Ellen G.

The Desire of Ages, Mountain View, California, Pacific Press, 1898.

The Spirit of Prophecy, vols. 2­3, Mountain View, California, Pacific Press, 1877­1878.

Edersheim, Alfred

Bible History, vol. 1, (1876) Reprint, Grand Rapids Eerdmans 1949.

The Life and Times of Jesus the Messiah, (1883) Reprint, Grand Rapids Eerdmans 1967.

Farrar, Frederic W.

The Life of Christ, New York, Dutton, 1877.

Fleetwood, John

The Life of Our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, New Haven, Galpin, 1844.

Geike, Cunningham

The Life and Words of Christ New York, Appleton, 1883.

Hanna, William

The Life of Christ

New York, American Tract Society,

Harris, John

The Great Teacher, 2nd ed.

Amherst J. S. and C. Adams, 1836

The Great Teacher, 17th ed Boston, Gould and Lincoln, 1870.

March, Daniel

Night Scenes in the Bible

Philadelphia, Zeigler, McCurdy,

Walks and Homes of Jesus Philadelphia, Presbyterian Pub. Committee, 1856.

Sample Comparison Exhibits

Note: Numerals in [ ] indicate page numbers.

The Spirit of Prophecy, Vol. 2

E. G. White 1877

[67] Christ virtually says, On the bank of Jordan the heavens were opened before me, and the Spirit descended like a dove upon me. That scene at Jordan was but a token to evidence that I was the Son of God. If you believe in me as such, your faith shall be quickened, and you shall see that the heavens will be opened, and shall never be closed. I have opened them for you, and the angels of God, that are united with me in the reconciliation between earth and Heaven, uniting the believers on earth with the Father above, will be ascending, bearing the prayers of the needy and distressed from the earth to the Father above, and descending, bringing blessings. . . for the children of men.

The angels of God are ever moving up and down from earth to Heaven, and from Heaven to earth. All the miracles of Christ performed for the afflicted and suffering were, by the power of God, through the ministrations of angels. Christ condescended to take humanity, and thus he unites his interests with the fallen sons and daughters of Adam here below, while his divinity grasps the throne of God. And thus Christ opens the communication of man with God, and God with man.

The Life of Christ

William Hanna 1863

[108] You have heard ... on the banks of the river, the heavens opened for a moment above my head, and the Spirit was seen coming down like a dove upon me. That was but a sign. Believe what that sign was meant to confirm; believe in me as the Lamb of God, the Saviour of the world, the baptizer with the Holy Ghost, and your eye of faith shall be quickened, and you shall see those heavens standing continually open above my head-opened by me for you; and the angels of God ... that carry on the blessed ministry of reconciliation between earth and heaven, between ... believers below and the heavenly Father above... going up and bringing blessings innumerable down, ascending and descending upon the Son of man.... You shall see me in that ladder of all gracious communication between earth and heaven, my humanity fixing firmly the one end of that ladder on earth, in my divinity the other end of that ladder lost amid the splendors of the throne.

The Spirit of Prophecy, Vol. 2

E. G. White 1877

[343] The Feast of Tabernacles was celebrated to commemorate the time when the Hebrews dwelt in tents during their sojourn in the wilderness. While this great festival lasted, the people were required to leave their houses and live in booths made of green branches of pine or myrtle. These leafy structures were sometimes erected on the tops of the houses, and in the streets, but oftener outside the walls of the city, in the valleys and along the hillsides. Scattered about in every direction, these green camps presented a very picturesque appearance.

[344] The feast lasted one week, and during all that time the temple was a festal scene of great rejoicing.

Night Scenes in the Bible

Daniel March 1868-1870

[363] For seven successive days Jerusalem was crowded by thousands of the faithful in Israel . .. They lived in booths or tabernacles of green boughs built upon the housetops, in the streets and public squares, m the courts of the temple and of private houses, and all up and down the valleys and hillsides beyond the walls of the city. The whole of Mount Zion... was so thickly shaded with green boughs as to seem in the distance like a forest of palm and pine, of olive and of myrtle. Seven days were consecrated....

The Desire of Ages

Ellen G. White 1898

[23] So Christ set up His tabernacle in the midst of our human encampment. He pitched His tent by the side of the tents of men, that He might dwell among us, and make us familiar with His divine character and life.

The Great Teacher

John Harris 1836, (1870 ea.)

[90] He came and set up his tabernacle in the midst of the human encampment, pitched his tent side by side with our tents, to attest the presence of God, to make us familiar with his character, and sensible of his love.

The Desire of Ages

Ellen G. White 1898

[83] It would be well for us to spend a thoughtful hour each day in contemplation of the life of Christ. We should take it point by point, and let the imagination grasp each scene, especially the closing ones. As we thus dwell upon His great sacrifice for us, our confidence m Him will be more constant, our love will be quickened, and we shall be more deeply imbued with His spirit.

Walks and Homes of Jesus

Daniel March 1856

[313] Nevertheless it will do us all good, frequently and solemnly to review the closing scenes In the Saviour's earthly life.... We shall learn many salutary lessons, by going back in memory, and spending a thoughtful hour, in the endeavor to strengthen our faith and quicken our love at the foot of the cross.

The Desire of Ages

Ellen G. White 1898

[142] "Verily, verily, I say unto you, Hereafter ye shall see heaven open, and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of man."

Here Christ virtually says, On the bank of the Jordan the heavens were opened, and the Spirit descended like a dove upon Me. That scene was but a token that I am the Son of God. If you believe on Me as such, your faith shall be quickened. You shall see that the heavens are opened, and are never to be closed. I have opened them to you. The angels of God are ascending..

and descending, bringing blessing and hope, courage, help, and life, to the children of men....

[143] In taking upon Himself humanity, our Saviour unites His interests with those of the fallen sons and daughters of Adam, while through His divinity He grasps the throne of God. And thus Christ is the medium of communication of men with God, and of God with men.

The Life of Christ

William Hanna 1863

[108] "Verily, verily I say unto you, hereafter, or rather from this time forward, ye shall see heaven open, and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of man. You have heard, that a few weeks ago on the banks of the river, the heavens opened for a moment above my head, and the Spirit was seen coming down like a dove upon me. That was but a sign. Believe what that sign was meant to confirm; believe in me as the Lamb of God, the Saviour of the world, the baptizer with the Holy Ghost, and your eye of faith shall be quickened, and you shall see those heavens standing continually open above my head-opened by me for you; and the angels of God-all beings and things that carry on the blessed ministry of reconciliation between earth and heaven . . . ascending and descending upon the Son of man .... You shall see me in that ladder of all gracious communication between earth and heaven, my humanity fixing firmly the one end of that ladder on earth, in my divinity the other end of that ladder lost amid the splendors of the throne."

Appendix Chapter 6 Exhibit

The Spirit of Prophecy, Vol. 2 The Life of Christ
E.G. White 1877 William Hanna 1863
[58] Christ’s life had been so retired and secluded at Nazareth that John had not a personal acquaintance with him, and ne did not positively know that he was the Messiah. ... [81] John could not know certainly ... that this was He of whom he spake. ... John had never seen Jesus, had no personal acquaintance with his relative ... the retired life of the One at Nazareth, and the dwelling of the other in the desert.
[58] The secluded life of Christ for thirty years at Nazareth ... gave no special evidence of his Messiahship. ... The Lord had shown him that the Messiah would be pointed out to him by a distinct sign;... then John could present him to the world as the Lamb of God, that was to take away the sin of the world. [82] John...must have known...what a sinless and holy life he had been leading for these thirty years at Nazareth, or this knowledge must have been supernaturally communicated...during Christ’s secluded life at Nazareth...whom he [John] was then to hold forth as the Lamb of God, who was to take away the sin of the world. ...
[58] John recognized him at once as the superior one... Never had such a holy influence been realized by John ... as when in the presence of Christ... the only sinless one.... He remonstrated with Christ, acknowledging his superiority. [83] He [John] certainly did at once recognize him as his superior ... so much holier than himself that he shrunk from baptizing Him...

The Holy One of God, who had no sin of his own to confess, ... carries it [the command] over the reluctance and remonstrance of the Baptist.

[59] In this act he [Jesus] identified himself with his people as their representative and head. As their substitute, he takes upon him their sins, numbering himself with the transgressors, taking the steps the sinner is required to take, and doing the work the sinner must do. ... [84] Does he [Jesus] not present himself...identifying himself with his people as their representative and their head; taking on him their sins, numbering himself with transgressors — doing now, enduring afterwards what it Became them as sinners to do, as sinners to suffer? ...
[60] A new and important era was opening before him — He had been happy in a life of industry and toil, while fulfilling the duties devolving on a son. ... [85] [Jesus] stood severed from the past, connected with a new future; Nazareth, its quiet home, its happy days, its peaceful occupations, lay behind; ...he would not have been the full partaker of our human nature had the weight of his new position, new duties, new trials not pressed heavily. ...
[60] Never before had angels listened to such a prayer as Christ offered at his baptism, and they were solicitous to be the bearers of the message from the Father to his Son. ... [86] Never before had the throne of the heavenly Grace been thus approached, and never before was such answer given. The prayer ascends direct from earth to heaven, and brings the immediate answer down....
[61] The heavens were opened, and beams of glory ... assumed the form of a dove... The dove-like form was emblematical of the meekness and gentleness of Christ... [86] But the visitation of the Spirit to the Saviour ... could not be more fitly represented than by the meek-eyed dove, the chosen symbol of gentleness and affection ... to point out as the Saviour of the world the meek and the lowly, the gentle and the loving Jesus. ...
[66] In these first few disciples the foundation of the Christian church are being laid. ...

[66] It teaches them the importance of personal effort, making direct appeals to relatives, friends, and acquaintances. There are those who profess to be acquainted with Christ for a life time who never make personal effort to induce one soul to come to the Saviour.

[109] Two of them [apostles] are foundation of the Christian church linked together in the everlasting remembrance of that church which they helped to found.

[109] It is the same species of agency similarly employed which God always most richly blessed; the direct, earnest, loving appeal of one man to his acquaintance, relative, or friend. How many are there among us who have been engaged for years...but who may seldom if ever have endeavored, by direct and personal address, to influence one human soul for its spiritual and eternal good!

[129] The necessity of the new birth was not so strongly impressed upon Nicodemus as the manner of its accomplishment. [134] Nicodemus was now troubling himself not so much either with the nature or the necessity of the new birth, as with the manner of its accomplishment.
[134] In none of his subsequent discourses did the Saviour explain so thoroughly, step by step, the work necessary to be done in the human heart, if it would inherit the kingdom of Heaven. [136] It may even be doubted whether, in the whole range of the apostolic epistles, there be a passage of equal length in which the manner of our salvation... is as fully and distinctly described.
[134] Jesus was acquainted with the soil into which he cast the seeds. [137] The Saviour... saw good soil here into which to cast the seed.
[135] The scales fell from his eyes. [138] The scales drop off from the eyes they so long had covered.
[136] Nicodemus related to John the story of that interview, and his inspired pen recorded it for the instruction of millions. [137] It is the Gospel of St. John ’ alone that the interview with Nicodemus is recorded. ... He may have received it from the lips of Nicodemus... to whom were first addressed those words which have comforted so many millions.
[138] The prophet points to the Saviour as the Sun of Righteousness rising with splendor, and soon to eclipse his own light. [141] [The Baptist’s] own light, which had “shone out so brilliantly, enlightening for a season the whole Jewish heavens, faded away and sunk out of sight in the beams or the rising Sun of righteousness”
[143] The Samaritans wished to join the Jews in ... building a rival temple on Mount Gerizim, where they worshiped according to the ceremonies that God gave unto Moses. [142] The Samaritans erected a rival temple on Mount Gerizim, and set up there a ritual of worship in strict accordance with the Mosaic institute.
[149] But the Samaritans asked no sign, and Jesus performed no miracles among them; yet they received his teachings. [148] You read of no sign or wonder wrought, no miracle performed, save that miracle of knowledge which won the woman’s faith.
[150] The Samaritans...listened to his marked contrast with...the Jews, who had misinterpreted the prophecies of Daniel, Zechariah, and Ezekiel. [148] It was not from the books of Daniel and Zechariah and Ezekiel, the books from which the Jews by false interpretations derived their ideas of the Messiah’s character.
[154] Jesus met this case as illustrating the position of many of the Jewish people. He contrasted this questioning unbelief with the faith of the Samaritans, who were ready to receive him as a teacher sent by God, and to accept him as the promised Messiah without a sign or miracle. [152] He saw in this nobleman a specimen of his countrymen at large. ... He had just come from Sychar, where so many had believed in him without any sign or wonder done, believed in him as a teacher sent from God, believed in him as the Messiah. ... What a contrast.
[187] He was a Jew, but when he became a publican his brethren despised him. The Jewish people were continually irritated on account of the Roman yoke. That a despised and heathen nation should collect tribute of them was a constant reminder that their power and glory...had departed. ... Matthew...followed...Jesus. ... He gave no thought to the lucrative business. [208] Matthew was a Jew...a publican...a tax-gatherer. The office was commonly held by foreigners... The payment of the taxes exacted by the foreigners under whose rule they were, irritated to the last degree the Jews, who regarded it as a visible sign and token of their bondage. ...

[Matthew joined Jesus] throwing up thus a lucrative engagement.

[193] Nothing so distinguished the Jews from surrounding nations, and designated them as true worshipers of the Creator, as the institution of the Sabbath. Its observance was a continual visible token of their connection with God, and separation from other people. All ordinary labor for a livelihood or for worldly profit was forbidden upon the seventh day. [194] There was no rite, nor which the Jews were more conspicuously distinguished from surrounding nations. ... Their Sabbath-keeping was a perpetual and visible token of the connection in which they stood to God...the cessation from all manner of work. ... The rest enjoined...obviously...was the work of men’s ordinary occupation or trade.
[194] Nehemiah says: “In those days saw I in Judah some” [working on the Sabbath]....           

And Jeremiah commands them: “Take heed to yourselves...”

[195]  “When thou comest into the standing corn of thy neighbor, then thou mayest pluck the ears with thine hand.”

[196]  “In those days,” says Nehemiah, “saw I in Judah some” [working on the Sabbath]. ... It is...from the lips of Jeremiah: “Thus saith the Lord: Take heed to yourselves...”

“When thou comest into the standing corn of thy neighbor, then thou mayest pluck the ears with thy hand.”

[262] This marshaling of five thousand people into companies. [279] The marshaling of five thousand men, besides women and children, into such an orderly array.
[266] In every trial and emergency, Jesus went to his Heavenly Father for help, and, in those secret interviews, received strength for the work that lay before him. Christians should follow the example of their Saviour, and seek in prayer the strength that will enable them to endure the trials and duties of life. [281] Jesus holds his secret and close fellowship with heaven. ... This night of lonely prayer is to be put alongside of the other instances in which, upon important emergencies, our Saviour had recourse to privacy and prayer, teaching us, by his great example, where our refuge and our strength... are to be found.
[272] Jesus saw, in this [Peter’s] acknowledgment [as the Son of God], the living principle that would animate the hearts of his believers in coming ages. It is the mysterious working of God’s Spirit upon the human heart, that elevates.

[315] It [Peter’s reply on the Son of God] indicated some mysterious in-dwelling of the Divinity...which raised him [Jesus] high above the level of our ordinary humanity. ... In the faith which thus expressed itself, Jesus saw the germ of all that living faith by which true believers of every age were to be animated.
[297] He preferred no further request, he made no noisy demonstration, but remained in blissful silence. [192] He is silent at least, he is satisfied; he makes no remonstrance, he proffers no request.
[299] They [the Pharisees] saw that Christ possessed a power, and claimed it as his own prerogative, which they thought belonged to God alone. [193] [The Pharisees saw it] in proof of Christ’s possession of a prerogative which they were right in thinking belonged to God only.
[319] There was one poor woman among that crowd who had suffered twelve long years with a disease that made her life a burden. She had spent all her substance upon physicians and remedies, seeking to cure her grievous malady. [224] It gave... to one poor woman the opportunity. ... Her timidity...kept her from...telling him of her malady. Twelve long years she had been a sufferer. ... All she had she had spent upon physicians.
The Spirit of Prophecy Vol. 2 (cont'd) Walks and Homes of Jesus Daniel March 1856
As the sun was setting he called his three most devoted disciples to his side, and led them out of the noisy town, across the fields, and up the steep side of a mountain. Jesus was weary from toil and travel. He had taught the people and healed the sick throughout the entire day; but he sought this high elevation because he could there find retirement from the crowds that continually sought him, and time for meditation and prayer. He was very weary, and was much fatigued in toiling up the steep ascent.

[327]  The disciples...were accustomed to this practice. ... They asked no questions as to his purpose, and patiently accompanied him. As they are ascending the mountain, the setting sun leaves the valleys in shadow, while the light still lingers on the mountain tops, and gilds with its fading glory the rugged path they are treading. But soon the golden light dies out from the hill as well as valley, the sun disappears behind the western horizon, and the solitary travelers are wrapt in the darkness of night. ...

[149]  It is drawing towards evening...

[150] And now the Master calls the three favorite disciples to himself, and makes his way out of the noisy town, across the open fields and the wild pasture lands, and up the steep ascent of the mountain. ... The light of the setting sun lingers long upon the top. ... He has spent the day in travel and in teaching, and this mountain climb at night adds a heavy weight to the weariness. ... His hand has lifted the burden of infirmity from many shoulders...

[151]  But he himself is as much fatigued with the steep ascent as...Peter or...John... They do not ask him whither he is going. ... They have known him many times to spend the whole night in desert places, or upon lonely mountains in prayer, and they do not need to ask him for what purpose he leads them forth from the noisy crowd or the quiet homes. ...

[152]  Far away, like molten gold... the sun has sunk beneath the horizon. ... Tiberias...lies deep-set among the hills, with a changing border of golden tints and purple shadows. ...

[328]  He especially plead that they might witness such a manifestation of his divinity as would forever remove from their minds all unbelief and lingering doubts; a manifestation that would comfort them in the hour of his supreme agony with the knowledge that he was of a surety the Son of God, and that his shameful death was a part of the divine plan of redemption. [155] He was praying especially for such a manifestation of his glory before their eyes as would heal their unbelief, and help them to be reconciled to the humiliation and death which awaited him at Jerusalem...
[328] Suddenly the heavens open, the golden gates of the City of God are thrown wide, and holy radiance descends upon the mount, enshrouding the kneeling form of Christ. He arises from his prostrate position, and stands in Goa-like majesty; ...his garments are no longer coarse and soiled, but white and glittering like the noon-day sun. [155] Suddenly, as if the golden gates of heaven had been thrown wide, and the splendor of the eternal throne had been poured upon the holy mount, the bending suppliant is clothed with a glory above the brightness of the sun. No longer prostrate in an agony of prayer, he seems to sit enthroned amid the radiance of light. ... His countenance wears the aspect of serene and godlike majesty. ...
[328] The sleeping disciples are awakened by the flood of glory that illuminates the whole mount. They gaze with fear and amazement upon the shining garments and radiant countenance of their Master. At first their eyes are dazzled by the unearthly brilliancy of the scene, but as they become able to endure the wondrous light, they perceive that Jesus is not alone. Two glorious figures stand...with him. They are Moses, who talked with God face to face amid the thunder and lightnings of Sinai, and Elijah, that prophet of God who did not see death, but was conducted to heaven in a chariot of fire. [155] The sleeping disciples are awakened by the flood of glory covering the whole mount. Gazing with wonder and alarm upon the shining robes and the changed countenance of their Master, they see that he is not alone. The great lawgiver, who conversed with Jehovah amid the thunders and the darkness of Sinai, and the mighty prophet who was taken up in a chariot of fire.
The Spirit of Prophecy Vol. 2 (cont'd) Night Scenes in the Bible Daniel March 1868-1870
[344] At the first dawn of day, the priests sounded a long, shrill blast upon their silver trumpets; and the answering trumpets, and the glad shouts of the people from their booths, echoing over hill and valley, welcomed the festal day. Then the priest dipped from the flowing waters of the Kedron a flagon of water, and, lifting it on high, while the trumpets were sounding, he ascended the broad steps of the temple, keeping time with the music with slow and measured tread, chanting meanwhile: “Our feet shall stand within thy gates, O Jerusalem!” [365] When the first streak of dawn appeared, shooting up the eastern sky... the priests sounded with silver trumpets three times, long and loud, and the answering shouts of the people welcomed the Great Hosanna day. A procession of priests started immediately to bring water from the fountain...which flowed... They ascended the steps of the temple, bearing the golden beaker full of water in their hands, chanting...keeping time with their steps: “Our feet shall stand within thy gates, O Jerusalem.”
[344] He bore the flagon to the altar which occupied a central position in the temple court. Here were two silver basins, with a priest standing at each one. The flagon of water was poured into one basin, and a flagon of wine into the other; and the contents of both flowed into a pipe which communicated with the Kedron, and was conducted to the Dead Sea. ... Then the jubilant strains rang forth: —

“The Lord Jehovah is my strength and song;” “therefore with joy shall we draw water out of the wells of salvation!”

[365] Then, in the presence of all the people they poured out the consecrated water in commemoration of the fountain that flowed from the rock for the tribes in the wilderness, and again they sung and the people took up the chorus with thundering voices: “The Lord Jehovah is my strength and song; therefore with joy shall ye draw water out of the wells of salvation.”
[345] At night the temple and its courts blazed so with artificial light that the whole city was illuminated. The music, the waving of palm- branches, the glad hosannas, the great concourse of people, over which the light streamed from the hanging lamps, the dazzling array of the priests, and the majesty of the ceremonies, all combined to make a scene that deeply impressed all beholders. [364] The night following the seventh day of the feast was the time when the interest of the great festival attained a pitch of the most wild and excited enthusiasm. Through the whole of that night four huge, golden candelabras, each sustaining four vast basins of oil, were kept burning in the principal court of the temple. ... A vast orchestra of Levites was ranged up and down the fifteen stone steps of the temple. ... The vast mass of the people took up the chorus, at the same time waving branches of palm and of myrtle, and the swell of song rolled over all the housetops. ...

The Spirit of Prophecy Vol. 2 (cont'd) The Life of Christ William Hanna 1863
Previous texts

[370] Each morning a vast procession formed itself around the little fountain of Siloam down in the valley of the Kedron. Out of its flowing waters the priests filled a large golden pitcher. Bearing it aloft, they climbed the steep ascent of Moriah...up the broad stairs and into the court of the temple, in whose centre the altar stood. Before this altar two silver basins were planted, with holes beneath to let the liquid poured into them flow down into the subterranean reservoir beneath the temple, to run out thence into the Kedron, and down into the Dead Sea.
The Spirit of Prophecy Vol. 3 (cont'd) The Life of Christ William Hanna 1863
[26]    The children were foremost in rejoicing. They repeated the hosannas that were snouted the day before, and waved palm-branches triumphantly before the Saviour. [507] But there are little children among them who had taken part in yesterday’s procession, within whose ears its hosannas are still ringing. These feel no such restraint.
[27]    Never before had he [Jesus] assumed such kingly authority; never before had his words and acts possessed so great power. He had done great and marvelous works throughout Jerusalem, but never in such a solemn and impressive manner. [506] He had wrought many miracles before in Jerusalem, but never here and thus; never within the walls of the sanctuary; never in such a public and solemn manner, as direct attestations of his asserted kingly dignity and power.... How utterly impossible it is that he can be... suffered to act in such a bold presumptuous, defiant style.
[28]    The priests and rulers... were unable to accomplish anything farther that day. ...

His singular invasion of the temple was so presumptuous...that they urged...calling him to account for the interfering with the authorized keepers of the temple. Three years before they had challenged him to give them a sign of his Messiahship. ...

They now decided to demand no sign of his authority.

[507] The baffled scribes and high priests retire, to do no more that day.

[511] They are the constituted keepers of the temple. ... There has been manifest invasion of [their] territory. ... Three years before Jesus had acted in the same way. ... They do not, indeed, now ask for signs.

[29]    If they should deny the mission of John and his baptism unto repentance, they would lose influence with the people — for John was acknowledged by them to be a prophet of God. But if they should acknowledge that John’s mission was divine, then they would be obliged to acknowledge Jesus as the Messiah; for John had repeatedly pointed him out to the people as the Christ. [512] If they acknowledged it as divine, they must also recognize his authority as divine; for John had openly and repeatedly pointed to him as the Messiah. ... Though really and in their hearts rejecting it, they had never openly discredited John’s claim to be a prophet.
[40] The city and temple of the Jews were to be destroyed. The stone was to fall upon them...their glory...scattered as the dust which the wind driveth away. Jesus has set before us the only true foundation. ... To be broken go to Christ with the humility of a child... believing in his forgiving love. [515] Utter desolation was to come upon the city and people of the Jews. ... The stone was to fall upon it...and the remnant...was as the dust which the wind drives to and fro. ... [Jesus] is set before us as the one and only true and broad and firm foundation. ... Such is Christ to all who go to him in humility...for their forgiveness.
[42] If he should say, It is unlawful to give tribute unto Caesar, there were those present whose task it was to immediately bear the report to the Roman authorities, and have Jesus arrested at once as one who was creating rebellion among the Jews. ... But in case he should say, It is lawful to give tribute unto Caesar, they designed to call the attention of the Jewish people to his decision, and accuse him as one opposed to the divine law. [521] If he shall say it is lawful to give tribute to Caesar, his favor with the people is gone. ... Should he on the other hand, say as they fondly hope he will, that it is not lawful, the weapon is at once put into their hands which they can use against him. ... They have but to report him to Pilate as a stirrer-up of sedition.
[43] Had they answered the claims of God and faithfully fulfilled their obligations to him, they would not have become a broken nation, subject to a foreign power. No Roman ensign would have waved over Jerusalem, no Roman sentinel would have stood at her gates, no Roman governor ruled within her walls. The Jewish nation was then paying the penalty of its apostasy from God. [522] For they had but fulfilled that acknowledged obligation, had they been but true to the spirit and laws of their own ancient government, no Roman soldier had ever invaded their borders, no Roman governor had sat in the Hall of Judgment at Jerusalem. It was their own failure in rendering to God the things that were his ... [that exposed them] to the infliction of a certain penalty.
[48]    Should he agree with them in regard to the resurrection of the dead, he would be entirely cut off from any fellowship with the Pharisees. Should he differ from them, they designed to present his faith to the people. [528] If he agree with them, then adieu to his power with the people; if he fail to answer, what a triumph both over him and all credulous believers in a resurrection!
[49]    The Sadducees were seeking to bring the mysteries of God to a level with their finite reasoning instead of opening their minds to the reception of those sacred truths by which their understanding would have been expanded. Thousands become infidels. [529] They looked upon it too much as a mere force. ... They failed to recognise the energy of a living Being...executing his plans — the very same error as to the power of God which lies at the root of a large part of our modern infidelity.
[50] There will be a close and tender relationship between God and his resurrected saints. [533] Union with Jesus Christ...brings us into such close and hallowed fellowship with God.
[51]    Upon these two principles of God’s moral government hang all the law and the prophets. The first four commandments indicate the duty of man to his Creator; and the first and great Commandment is, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God. ...

[52]    Jesus taught his hearers that not one of the precepts of Jehovah could be broken without violating one or both of the great principles upon which rested the whole law and the prophets: Love to God and love to man.

[53]    The two commandments which he indicated are two great principles springing from one root. The first cannot be kept and the second broken, nor the second kept while the first is broken.

[535] Jesus teaches that a divine unity pervades the law, a unity that cannot be broken; all its single and separate commands resting upon a common, firm, immutable basis; all so connected in meaning, spirit, and obligation, that you cannot truly obey one without obeying all, nor break one without breaking all. ... Jesus points to the two requirements of love to God and love to one another as containing within themselves the sum and substance of the whole.
[52] Self-love, love of the world, or an undue affection for any created thing, is idolatry in the sight of God. [535] All idolatrous self-love, creature-love, world-love, must be renounced in order that this first and greatest of the commands be kept.
[54] Christ had repeatedly shown that his father’s law contained deeper than mere authoritative commands. [537] The law and the prophets... had something more in them than authoritative commands.
The Spirit of Prophecy Vol. 3 (cont'd) Night Scenes in the Bible Daniel March 1868-1870
[94]    The passover moon, broad and full, shone from a cloudless sky. The city of pilgrims’ tents was hushed into silence. [403]  The Passover moon shone from a sky which at that season seldom has a cloud. ... The streets were silent, the voices were hushed in the tents of pilgrims on the hill-sides.
[94] His disciples were perplexed, and anxiously regarded his countenance, hoping there to read an explanation of the change that had come over their Master. They had frequently seem him depressed, but never before so utterly sad and silent. As he proceeded, this strange sadness increased; yet they dared not question him as to the cause. ... His disciples looked anxiously for his usual place of retirement, that their Master might rest. [404]  The Disciples are amazed and deeply troubled at the unusual silence of their beloved Master. They have seen him wear the shade of sorrow many times, but never have they seen him look as he does to-night. And the strange sadness grows heavier and heavier upon him as he leads the way, and they dare not ask the cause. They think he is going, as he was wont, to find some place of rest.
[94] Upon entering the garden he said to his companions, “Sit ye here, while I go and pray yonder.” Selecting Peter, James, and John to accompany him, he proceeded farther into the recess of the garden. [404] But when he reaches the open gate of the garden alongside the familiar path, he says, “Sit ye here while I go and pray yonder.” ... Silently selecting three from the rest to go a little farther with him... he goes a stone’s throw further into the recesses of the garden.
[95]    He was overpowered by a terrible fear that God was removing his presence from him. ... His spirit shuddered before it. ...

[96]    The disciples were...troubled to see their Master, usually so calm and dignified, wrestling. ... At the end of an hour, Jesus, feeling the need of human sympathy, rose.

[405]  Jesus was seized and possessed by a terrible and overpowering fear — a shuddering and quaking horror. ... Usually so calm, so self- possessed, he now seemed utterly beside himself.

This first paroxysm...lasted, it would seem, a full hour.

[406]  He hurries get some word, some look of sympathy from his disciples.

The Spirit of Prophecy Vol. 3 (cont'd) The Life of Christ William Hanna 1863
[107]  The coldest hour of the night was that preceding the dawn, an a fire had been lighted in the hall. ...

[108]  But, as the light flashed upon Peter’s countenance, the woman who kept the door cast a searching glance upon him; she had noticed that he came in with John. ...

In assuming an air of indifference, he... became an easy subject to Satan’s temptation. ... The degrading oaths were fresh upon his lips, and the shrill crowing of the cock was yet ringing in his ears.

[653] It was the coldest hour of the night, the hour that precedes the dawn, and the servants...had kindled a fire in the upper end of the hall. ...

[654] The strong light of the kindling fire, falling upon that group of faces, her eye fell on Peter’s. ...

[656] What his appearing for the time as indifferent to Christ’s fate...?

The oaths...were yet fresh upon Peter’s lips... That shrill sound was yet ringing in his ears.

[109]  Peter was conscience-smitten; his memory was aroused; he recalled to mind his promise of a few short hours before, that he would go to prison or to death for his Lord. He remembered his grief when the Saviour told him in the upper chamber that he would deny his Master thrice that same night.

[111]  It was torture to his bleeding heart to know that he had added the heaviest burden to the Saviour’s humiliation and grief.

[657] And sluggish memories, dead consciences, are they not often thus awakened? ...

Instantly there flashed upon his memory those words of prophetic warning, spoken a few hours before in the guest-chamber.

[659] How would it grieve Peter to remember that he too had had a share in laying such heavy burdens on the last hours of his Lord’s suffering life!

[113] They brought two charges against him, by one or both of which they meant to effect his condemnation. One was that he was a disturber of the peace, the leader of a rebellion. ... The other charge was that he was a blasphemer. [664] He puts to him some the two main charges to be afterwards brought against him, of being a disturber of the public peace and a teacher of blasphemous doctrines.
[120] This voluntary confession of Jesus, claiming his Sonship with God, was made in the most public manner, and under the most solemn oath. In it he presented to the minds of those present a reversal of the scene then being enacted before them, when he, the Lord of life and glory, would be seated at the right hand of God, the supreme Judge of Heaven and earth, from whose decision there could be no appeal. [667] It is our Lord’s own free and full confession, his public and solemn assertion of his claim to the Messiah- ship, and Sonship to God. ... Jesus will now...let those earthly dignitaries...know that the hour is coming which shall witness a strange reversal in their relative positions — he being seen sitting on the seat of power, and they, with all the world beside, seen standing before his bar, as on the clouds of heaven he comes to judge.
[127] Had the Jews possessed the authority to do so, they would have executed Jesus at once upon the hasty condemnation of their judges; but such power had passed from them into the hands of the Romans. [672] Had the full power of carrying out their own sentence been in their hands, there had been no difficulty; Jesus would have been led out instantly to execution. But Judea was now under the Roman yoke.
[151] Jesus did not despise their tears, but the sympathy which they expressed wakened a deeper chord of sympathy in his own heart for them. He forgot his own grief in contemplating the future fate of Jerusalem. ... Many of the very women who were weeping about Jesus were to perish with their children in the siege of Jerusalem. [704] Jesus is not displeased with, Jesus does not reject, the expression of their pity. So far from this, the tender sympathy that they show for him stirs a still deeper sympathy for them within his heart; ...he forgets his own impending griefs as he contemplates theirs. ...

 [704] Many of the very women who were lamenting Jesus by the way, may have perished in the beige of Jerusalem.

[163] Inanimate nature expressed a sympathy with its insulted and dying Author. The sun refused to look upon the awful scene. Its full, bright rays were illuminating the earth at midday, when suddenly it seemed to be blotted out. Complete darkness enveloped the cross, and all the vicinity about, like a funeral pall. There was no eclipse or other natural cause for this darkness. [733] The full bright sun...has been looking down. ... The mid-day hour has come; when suddenly there falls a darkness which swallows up the light, and hangs a funeral pall, around the cross — no darkness of an darkness which any natural cause whatever can account for.
[170] At his birth the angel star in the heavens had known Christ, and had conducted the seers to the manger where he lay. The heavenly hosts ad known him, and sung his praise over the plains of Bethlehem. The sea had acknowledged his voice, and was obedient to his command. Disease and death had recognized his authority, and yielded their prey to his demand. The sun had known him, and hidden its face of light from the sight of his dying anguish. The rocks had known him, and shivered into fragments at his dying cry. Although inanimate nature recognized, and bore testimony of Christ, that he was the Son of God, yet the priests and rulers knew not the Saviour, rejected the evidence of his divinity, and steeled their hearts against his truths. [754] Speaking out against that obduracy of.. .the nigh priests and their minions, the true crucifiers of the Lord...which stood out against all the demonstrations of the Lord’s divinity, St. Gregory exclaims: “The heavens knew him, and forthwith sent out a star and a company of angels to sing his birth. The sea knew him, and made itself a way to be trodden by his feet; the earth knew him, and trembled at his dying; the sun knew him, and hid the rays of his light; the rocks knew him, for they were rent in twain; Hades knew him, and gave up the dead it had received. But though the senseless elements perceived him to be their Lord, the hearts of the unbelieving Jews knew him not as God, and, harder than the very rocks, were not rent by repentance.”
[For the chapters “Jesus at Emmaus,” “In the Upper Chamber,” and “Jesus at Galilee,” in Ellen White’s The Spirit of Prophecy, Vol. 3, COMPARE Daniel March’s Night Scenes in the Bible, pages 416-36.]
The Desire of Ages Ellen G. White 1898 The Great Teacher John Harris 1836 (1870 ed.)
[34] Descendants...still looked for the hope...given through Moses, “A Prophet shall the Lord your God raise up unto you of your brethren, like unto me; Him shall ye hear in all things whatsoever He shall say unto you.” Acts 3:22. Again, they read how the Lord would anoint One “to preach good tidings unto the meek,” “to bind up the broken-hearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives,” and to declare the “acceptable year of the Lord.” Isa. 61:1,2. They read how he would “set judgment in the earth,” how the isles should “wait for his law,” how the Gentiles should come to His light, and kings to the brightness of His rising. Isa. 42:4; 60:3. [21] “For Moses truly said unto the fathers, A prophet shall the Lord your God raise up unto you of your brethren, like unto me; him shall ye hear in all things whatsoever he shall say unto you.”... Unfolding it further, we read, that he should preach the gospel to the poor, and proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord; that he should set judgment in the earth, and the isles should wait for his law; that the Gentiles should come to his light, and kings to the brightness of his rising.

The Desire of Ages Ellen G. White 1898 The Life and Times of Jesus the Messiah Alfred Edersheim 1883 (1967 ed.)
[117] When Adam was assailed by the tempter, none of the effects of sin were upon Him. He stood in the strength of perfect manhood, possessing the full vigor of mind and body. ... Christ took upon Him the infirmities of degenerate humanity.

He took the nature of man, with the possibility of yielding to temptation.

[298] Human nature, that of Adam before his fall, was created both sinless and peccable. ... Jesus voluntarily took upon Himself human nature with all its infirmities and weaknesses. ... It was human nature, in itself capable of sinning, but not having sinned. ... The position of the first Adam was that of being capable of not sinning.
The Desire of Ages Ellen G. White 1898 The Great Teacher John Harris 1836 (1870 ed.)
[116] No human being had come into the world and escaped the power of the deceiver. The forces of the confederacy of evil were set upon His track to engage in warfare against Him, and if possible to prevail over Him. ...

Satan saw that he must either conquer or be conquered. The issues of the conflict involved too much to be entrusted to his confederate angels. He must personally conduct the warfare. All the energies of apostasy were rallied against the son of God. Christ was made the mark of every weapon of hell.

[165] He had come into a world in which nothing in human form had ever escaped the pollution of sin. ... Satan appears to have called in his agents from every other pursuit, and to have set them in array against him alone: turning away from all ignobler prey, he seems to have made him the sole mark for every shaft and weapon of hell. As if the temptation of Christ were too great an enterprise...the prince of darkness himself undertook personally to conduct the untried adventure.
The Desire of Ages Ellen G. White 1898 The Life of Christ William Hanna 1863
[141] With the calling of John and Andrew and Simon, of Philip and Nathanael, began the foundation of the Christian church. John directed two of his disciples to Christ. Then one of these, Andrew, found his brother, and called him to the Saviour. Philip was then called, and he went in search of Nathanael. These examples should teach us the importance of personal effort, of making direct appeals to our kindred, friends, and neighbors. There are those who for a lifetime have professed to be acquainted with Christ, yet who have never made a personal effort to bring even one soul to the Saviour. They leave all the work for the minister. [109] These five men were the first disciples of Jesus, and in the narrative of their becoming so we have the history of the infancy of the church. ...

It tells us of the variety of agencies employed in bringing the first of his disciples to Christ. Two of these men acted on the promptings of the Baptist, one of them on the direct call...of our Lord himself, one at the instance of a brother, one on the urgency of a friend... It would be foolish to take these of the number the voice of the preacher, the word of Christ himself, and the agency of relative or acquaintance. ...

[109] How many are there among us who have been engaged for years...but who may seldom if ever have endeavored, by direct and personal address, to influence one human soul for its spiritual and eternal good.

The Desire of Ages Ellen G. White 1898 The Life of Christ Frederic W. Farrar 1877
[155] There could be heard...the lowing of cattle, the bleating of sheep, the cooing of doves, mingled with the chinking of coin and angry disputation. So great was the confusion that the worshipers were disturbed, and the words addressed to the Most High were drowned, in the uproar that invaded the temple. [142] The House of Prayer...had been degraded into a place more like shambles...while the lowing of oxen, the bleating of sheep...the huckstering and wrangling, and the clinking of money...might be heard in the adjoining courts disturbing the chant of the Levites and the prayers of the priests.
The Desire of Ages Ellen G. White 1898 The Life of Christ William Hanna 1863
[173] Yet he [Nicodemus] did not fully understand the Saviour’s words. He was not so much impressed by the necessity of the new birth as by the manner of its accomplishment. He said wonderingly, “How can these things be?” [134] Yet a haze still hangs over it. He wonders and he doubts. ... Nicodemus was now troubling himself not so much either with the nature or the necessity of the new birth, as with the manner of its accomplishment.
The Desire of Ages Ellen G. White 1898 The Great Teacher John Harris 1836 (1870 ed.)
[324] The soul that is yielded to Christ becomes His own fortress, which He holds in a revolted world, and He intends that no authority shall be known in it but His own. [157-8] He designed the church to be his own peculium; it is the only fortress which he holds in a revolted world; and he intended, therefore, that no authority should be known in it...but his own.
The Desire of Ages Ellen G. White 1898 The Life of Christ William Hanna 1863
[334] Those hardy fishermen had spent their lives upon the lake...; but now... hope failed them as they saw that their boat was filling.

Absorbed in their efforts to save themselves, they had forgotten that Jesus was on board. Now...they remembered at whose command they had set out to cross the sea... But the dense darkness hid Him from their sight.

[262] They were practised hands that navigated this boat, who new well the lake in all its moods;...but now...they are ready to give up all hope. ... Where all this while is he at whose bidding they had embarked? ...They had been too busy...the mantle of the night’s thick darkness may have hidden him from their view.
The Desire of Ages Ellen G. White 1898 The Great Teacher John Harris 1836 (1870 ed.)
[350] Wherever He went, the tidings of His mercy preceded Him. Where He had passed, the objects of His compassion were rejoicing in health, and making trial of their new-found powers. Crowds were collecting around them to hear from their lips the works that the Lord had wrought. His voice was the first sound that many had ever heard, His name the first word they had ever spoken, His face the first they had ever looked upon. Why should they not love Jesus, and sound His praise? As He passed through the towns and cities He was like a vital current, diffusing life and joy wherever He went. [251] His path might be traced from place to place in lines of life, and health, and joy. Where he was expected, the public way was thronged with forms of helplessness, disease, and woe. Where he had passed, the restored might be seen making trial of their new-found powers; listeners formed into groups, to hear the tale of healing; and the delighted objects of his compassion rehearsing with earnestness what had passed, imitating his tones, and even trying to convey an idea of his condescending ways. His voice was the first sound which many of them heard; his name the first word they had pronounced; his blessed form the first sight they had ever beheld ... He went through the land like a current of vital air, an element of life, diffusing health and joy wherever he appeared.
The Desire of Ages (cont'd) Walks and Homes of Jesus Daniel March 1856
[384]  They learned from His disciples how He had crossed the sea. The fury of the storm, and the many hours of fruitless rowing against adverse winds, the appearance of Christ walking upon water, the fears thus aroused, His reassuring words, the adventure of Peter and its result, with the sudden stilling of the tempest and landing of the boat.

[385]  Could He not give health, strength, and riches to all His people?

[102] Then the disciples increased their surprise by telling the story of the night on the lake; the fury of the storm; the nine hours of hard rowing against the wind; the appearance of Jesus walking upon the sea; the cry of alarm, and then the impulsive attempt of Peter to go out to meet him on the water;...the hushing of the storm, and the subsidence of the waves. ...

And could he give health, and strength, and riches...?

[418] Christ was out of the reach of Herod and Caiaphas.... He had nothing to fear from the hatred of the Jews or Romans. ... Why need He give Himself up to death? If He was to die, how was it that His kingdom was to be established? ... [146] Out of the reach of Herod and Caiaphas, with nothing to fear from Jew or Roman, he takes this opportunity to...give himself up to die. ...

[149] It is drawing towards evening...

[419] Jesus calls to His side three of His disciples... and leads them across the fields, and far up a rugged path, to a lonely mountainside. The Saviour and His disciples have spent the day in traveling and teaching, and the mountain climb adds to their weariness. Christ has lifted burdens from mind and body of many sufferers; He has sent the thrill of life through their enfeebled frame; ... He is wearied with the ascent...

The light of the setting sun still lingers on the mountain top...

The disciples do not venture to ask Christ whither He is going, or for what purpose. He has often spent entire nights in the mountains in prayer.

[150] The Master calls the three favorite disciples to himself, and makes his way...across the open fields...and up the steep ascent of the mountain. ... The light of the setting sun lingers long upon the top...

He has spent the day in travel and in teaching, and this mountain climb at night adds a heavy weight to the weariness. ... His hand has lifted the burden of infirmity from many shoulders, and sent the thrill of life into many a worn and wasted frame. But he himself is as much fatigued with the steep ascent as the impetuous Peter or the gentle John. They do not ask him whither he is going, or for what purpose. ... They have known him many times to spend the whole night in desert places, or upon lonely mountains in prayer.

The Desire of Ages (cont'd) The Great Teacher John Harris 1836 (1870 ed.)
[466] No external force is employed. Under the influence of the Spirit of God, man is left free to choose whom he will serve. In the change that takes place when the soul surrenders to Christ, there is the highest sense of freedom. The expulsion of sin is the act of the soul itself...

The only condition upon which the freedom of man is possible is that of becoming one with Christ. “The truth shall make you free;” and Christ is the truth. Sin can triumph only by enfeebling the mind, and destroying the liberty of the soul. Subjection to God is restoration to one’s self, to the true glory and dignity of man. The divine law, to which we are brought into subjection, is the “law of liberty.”

[483-4] “Therefore doth My Father love Me, because I lay down My life, that I might take it again.” That is, My Father has so loved you, that He even loves Me more for giving My life to redeem you. In becoming your substitute and surety, by surrendering My life, by taking your liabilities, your transgressions, I am endeared to My Father.

[126] No external force is employed.... It is true, the change is necessitated; but that moral necessity is the highest form of freedom. It is true that the mind is brought under the authority of a new law; but that law is the royal law of liberty. ... He comes to the emancipation of the will from a state of slavery; (for sin can only triumph by enfeebling the mind and extinguishing the liberty of the soul;) and hence [he]...calls into exercise its noblest powers. Even the expulsion of sin is the act of the soul itself. ... “The only condition on which the freedom of a finite will is possible, is, by its becoming one with the will of God;” that subjection to him is restoration to one’s self.

[66] “Therefore doth my Father love me, because I lay down my life, that I might take it again” other words, My father loves you with a love so unbounded, that he even loves me the more for dying to redeem you. He so loves you, that whatever facilitates the expression of his love receives an expression of his divine esteem: by sustaining your liabilities, by surrendering my life as an equivalent for your transgressions...and for thus concurring, the Father loves me.

The Desire of Ages (cont'd) The Life and Times of Jesus the Messiah Alfred Edersheim 1883 (1967 ed.)
[602] Jesus read their hearts as an open book, and sounded their hypocrisy...[pointed] to the inscription on the coin. ... He would be...arrested for inciting to rebellion....

Christ’s reply was no evasion. ...

He had rebuked their hypocrisy and presumption. ...

[386]  Their knavery and hypocrisy he immediately perceived and exposed. ... We disclaim the idea that Christ’s was rather an evasion of the question. ... It was a very real answer, when [he pointed] to the image and inscription on the coin. ... It aid far more than rebuke their hypocrisy and presumption.
The Desire of Ages (cont'd) The Life of Christ William Hanna 1863
[615] Many would have advised her to keep her pittance for her own use; given into the hands of the well-fed priest, it would be lost sight of among the many costly gifts...

It is the motive that gives character to our acts, stamping them with ignominy or with high moral worth. Not the great things which every eye sees and every tongue praises does God account most precious. The little duties cheerfully done, the little gifts which make no show, and which to human eyes may appear worthless, often stand highest in His sight.

[548-9] Should she not have kept the little which she had for the relieving of her own wants? As to the priests and the temple, a large enough provision was made for them by public and private charity, without her being asked to add her trifling contribution. ... Who could tell...what these well-fed priests would do with her two mites? ... It is the motive which gives its true character to the act; that greatness in his estimate of things consists not in the doing of great acts that every eye must see, and that every tongue, may be ready to praise, but in doing what may be little things — so small that they escape all human notice, and so insignificant that there may be none to think them worthy of any praise.
[654]  Even now the disciples did not suspect Judas. ... A cloud settled over them all....

The disciples had searched one another’s faces closely...

[655]  Jesus still gave him opportunity for repentance. ... This was to the false disciple the last call to repentance...

A year before, Jesus had told the disciples that He had chosen twelve, and that one was a devil.

[614]  They all noticed that there was a cloud upon their Master’s countenance. ... No wonder...that they should [fix] searching looks on all around...

[615]  We have the express testimony...that none of them at this time suspected him [Judas] as the betrayer. ...

[617]  They recall what their Master had said a year before his death, that one of them was a devil. ...

[618]  In dealing with him as he did...[Jesus] was giving him another and last opportunity of repentance.

The Desire of Ages (cont'd) The Great Teacher John Harris 1836 (1870 ed.)
[672] This promised blessing, claimed by faith, brings all other blessings in its train. It is given according to the riches of the grace of Christ, and He is ready to supply every soul according to the capacity to receive. [147] Other blessings are desired; but this, which would bring all blessings in its train, offered in an abundance corresponding to its infinite plenitude — an abundance, of which the capacity of the recipient is to be the only limit.
Compare also:
The Acts of the Apostles E. G. White 1911 The Great Teacher John Harris 1836 (1870 ed.)
[50] The divine power which is necessary for the growth and prosperity of the church, and which would bring all other blessings in its train, is lacking, though offered in infinite plenitude.

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Testimonies for the Church, Vol. 8 E. G. White 1904 The Great Teacher (cont'd)
[21] The promise of the Spirit is a matter little thought of; and the result is only what might be expected. ...

The divine power which is necessary for the growth and prosperity of the church, and which would bring all other blessings in its train, is lacking, though offered in its infinite plenitude.

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The Desire of Ages E.G. White 1898 The Great Teacher (cont'd)
[668] All true obedience comes from the heart. It was heart work with Christ. And if we consent, He will so identify Himself with our thoughts and aims, so blend our hearts and minds into conformity to His will, that when obeying Him we shall be but carrying out our own impulses. [40] Having authoritatively announced his will, he can carry it into all the recesses of the soul, and, in perfect harmony with our free volitions, can so identify it with our thoughts and aims, so blend it with the stream and current of our consciousness, that in yielding obedience to his word we are only obeying the actings and impulses of our own minds.
[679] “The prince of this world cometh, and hath nothing in Me.” “The prince of this world is judged.” Now shall he be cast out. ... With prophetic eye Christ traced the scenes to take place in His last great conflict. He knew that when He should exclaim, “It is finished,” all heaven would triumph. His ear caught the distant music and the shouts of victory in the heavenly courts. He knew that the knell of Satan’s empire would then be sounded, and the name of Christ would be heralded from world to world throughout the universe. [166] “The prince of this world cometh,” said he, “and hath nothing in me.”...

[168] “The prince of this world is judged.” “Now shall he be cast out.” Even then he saw, in perspective, the completion of his triumph, and beyond: his prophetic ear, even then, caught the distant shout of his redeemed church. He knew that, when he should exclaim, “It is finished!” the powers of darkness would hear in that cry the knell of their empire; that when his name should be shouted from land to land, as the watchword of salvation, its every echo would shake and bring down the fabrics of that empire.

[680] The church, endowed with the righteousness of Christ, is His depositary, in which the riches of His mercy, His grace, and His love, are to appear in full and final display. Christ looks upon His people in their purity and perfection, as the reward of His humiliation, and the supplement of His glory, — Christ, the great Center, from whom radiates all glory. [160] The church is his mystical body. ... It is the theatre of his grace, in which he is making experiments of mercy on human hearts. ... And his church is the repository in which all that wealth is stored, preparatory to its full and final display. ... He is looking forward to...when...he shall find in her...spotless perfection the solace and reward of all his love, — and in her full happiness the supplement and completion of his own glory. Now he is the centre from which radiates all her splendor.
[700] And he suffered in proportion to the perfection of His holiness and His hatred of sin. [248] “He suffered, being tempted.” — suffered in proportion to the perfection of his holiness, and the depth of his aversion to sin.
The Desire of Ages E.G. White 1898 The Life of Christ William Hanna 1863
[770] At his birth the star had known Christ, and had guided the wise men to the manger where he lay. The heavenly hosts had known Him, and had sung His praise over the plains of Bethlehem. The sea had known His voice, and had obeyed His command. Disease and death had recognized His authority, and had yielded to Him their prey. The sun had known Him, and at the sight of His dying anguish, had hidden its face of light. The rocks had known Him, and had shivered into fragments at His cry. Inanimate nature had known Christ, and had borne witness to His divinity. But the priests and rulers of Israel knew not the Son of God. [754] Speaking out against that obduracy of...the high priests and their minions, the true crucifiers of the Lord...which stood out against all the demonstrations of the Lord’s divinity, St. Gregory exclaims: “The heavens knew him, and forthwith sent out a star and company of angels to sing his birth. The sea knew him, and made itself a way to be trodden by his feet; the earth knew him, and trembled at his dying; the sun knew him, and hid the rays of his light; the rocks knew him, for they were rent in twain; Hades knew him, and gave up the dead it had received. But though the senseless elements perceived him to be their Lord, the hearts of the unbelieving Jews knew him not as God, and, harder than the very rocks, were not rent by repentance.”
The Desire of Ages (cont'd) Night Scenes in the Bible Daniel March 1868-1870
[800] They looked upon the doomed city with weeping. ... He walked as carefully as they over the rough stones, now and then halting with them for a rest. ... The One who was soon to take his position at God’s right hand, who could say, “All power is given unto Me in heaven and in earth,” walked beside them. Matt. 28:18. ...

During the journey the sun had gone down, and before the travelers reached their place of rest, the laborers in the fields had left their work. ...

Had the disciples failed to press their invitation, they would not have known that their traveling companion was the risen Lord. Christ never forces His company upon anyone. He interests Himself in those who need Him. Gladly will He enter the humblest home, and cheer the lowliest heart. But if men are too indifferent to think of the heavenly Guest, or ask Him to abide with them, He passes on. ...

They look again, and lo, they see in His hands the print of nails. ...

[416]  They turn to take their last look of the city and brush away a silent tear. ... [415] They hear his step upon the stony road just like their own. He labors with panting breath. ...

[417]  The Son of God, who could say, “All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth,” walks. ...

The sun has gone down...and the laborers have left the terraced orchards and vineyards...before the two travelers reach their home. ...

[418]  They would not have recognized their Lord had they not yielded to the impulse. ... He never forces himself upon any. ... He interests himself in the sorrows that press them down, he warms their hearts...but if they fail to ask him to abide with them, he passes on. ...

[419]  They see the print of the nails in the open palms. ... Now they are ready to cast themselves in wonder and worship at his feet. ...

And now their weariness and their discouragement are all gone. ... But it is all light in the glad hearts. ...

[801] They rise to cast themselves at His feet and worship Him. ...

Their weariness and hunger are gone. ... In some parts the road is not safe, but they climb over the steep places, slipping on the smooth rocks. ... With their pilgrim staff in hand, they press on. ... They lose their track, but find it again. ...

The night is dark, but the Sun of Righteousness is shining upon them. ... They carry the greatest message ever given to the world, a message of glad tidings upon which the hopes of the human family for time and for eternity depend.

[420]  They hurry along the wild mountain road...climbing over steep ridges...stepping from stone to stone, feeling the way with the pilgrim’s staff, and sometimes slipping upon the smooth face of the steep ledges and then losing the track. ...

For they were bearers of the best tidings that human lips ever told. They could testify to a fact upon which all the hopes of man for eternity must depend.

[802]  On reaching Jerusalem the two disciples enter at the eastern gate, which is open at night on festal occasion. The houses are dark and silent, but the travelers make their way through the narrow streets by the light of the rising moon. They go to the upper chamber where Jesus spent the hours of the last evening before His death. Here they know that their brethren are to be found. Late as it is, they know that the disciples will not sleep till they learn what has become of the body of their Lord. They find the door of the chamber securely barred. They knock for admission, but no answer comes. All is still. Then they give their names. The door is carefully unbarred, they enter.... Then the door is again fastened...

[802] The voices of those in the room break out. ... “The Lord is risen indeed, and hath appeared to Simon.” Then the two travelers, panting with the haste with which they had made their journey, tell the wondrous story. ... Every eye is fastened upon the Stranger. No one has knocked for entrance. No footstep has been heard. ... Then they hear a voice which is no other than the voice of their Master. ... “Peace be unto you.” ...

[803]  At the birth of Jesus the angel announced, “Peace on earth, and good will to men.” And now at His first appearance to the disciples after His resurrection, the Saviour addressed them with the blessed words, “Peace be unto you.” ... He says, “Behold, I stand at the door, and knock.”

[420-21] Reaching the walls of the city at a late hour, they probably passed round to one of the eastern gates, which was kept open all night during the great festivities. ... They hurry along the narrow streets, guided now by the light of the risen moon. The doors are shut and the blank walls of the stone houses give no sign of life within. They make their way first of all, we may suppose, to that one memorable house with the upper chamber where Jesus spent the last evening with his disciples before he suffered. Late as is the hour, they feel confident that the band will still be together. ... The excitement has been too great to think of sleep.

[421]  When they reach the door, they find it barred from within. ... They knock, but none reply. ... They...announce their names...and cautious hands...unbolting the door...before voices of all within break out... “The Lord is risen indeed, and hath appeared unto Simon!” ... The excited and panting travelers take their turn and tell the wondrous story. ...

[422]  Every eye is fixed upon the stranger. There has been no knocking. ... No sound of entering footsteps [805] has been heard — They hear a voice speaking as only their Lord could speak, and saying, “Peace be unto you.” ...

[423]  His first appearance on earth was announced by angel voices with the same blessed word — peace. ... But he stands at the door of the heart and knocks.

[804]  The resurrection of Jesus was a type of the final resurrection of all who sleep in Him. The countenance of the risen Saviour, His manner, His speech, were all familiar to His disciples. [426] His resurrection is the pattern of our own His voice and look and manner of speech were all such as his friends and followers had known them to be in his former life.
[804] As Jesus arose from the dead, so those who sleep in Him are to rise again. We shall know our friends, even as the disciples knew Jesus. They may have been deformed, diseased, or disfigured, in this mortal life, and they rise in perfect health and symmetry. [426] And in like manner shall our beloved who sleep in Jesus rise again. ... There shall be voices...faces that need no introduction to tell us who they are. However plain they looked in this earthly life, they shall still be themselves. ... Their faces shall be radiant with the soul’s immortal beauty in the resurrection. The faces that we last saw on earth wrinkled with age or wasted with suffering...shall be the same when seen in the light of heaven.
The Desire of Ages (cont'd) The Great Teacher John Harris 1836 (1870 ed.)
[826] Christ’s name is their watchword, their badge of distinction, their bond of union, the authority for their course of action, and the source of their success. Nothing that does not bear His superscription is to be recognized in His kingdom.

[See also identical wording in The Acts of the Apostles, page 28.]

[32]    His name was to be their watchword, their badge of distinction, the principle of their piety, the bond of their union, the end of their actions, the authority for their conduct, and the source of their success. Nothing was to be recognized or received in his kingdom which did not bear the superscription of his name.

The Desire of Ages (cont'd) The Life of Christ William Hanna 1863
[50] About forty days after the birth of Christ, Joseph and Mary took Him to Jerusalem, to present Him to the Lord, and to offer sacrifice. This was according to the Jewish law, and as man’s substitute Christ must conform to the law in every particular. He had already been subjected to the rite of circumcision, as a pledge of His obedience to the law. [31]    On the eighth day after his birth Christ was circumcised.

[32]    Forty days after the birth of Jesus, Joseph and Mary carried the infant up to Jerusalem...Mary had to present the offering which the Jewish law required at the hands of every mother.

The Desire of Ages (cont'd) The Life of Our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ John Fleetwood 1844
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[33]    Under the Mosaic law, it was requisite, in order to fulfill all that is spoken of him in the Scriptures, that he should conform to a custom which characterizes the Jewish nation.
The Desire of Ages (cont'd) The Life of Christ William Hanna 1863
[50]    As an offering for the mother, the law required a lamb of the first year for a burnt offering, and a young pigeon or a turtledove for a sin offering. But the law provided that if the parents were too poor to bring a lamb, a pair of turtledoves or two young pigeons, one for a burnt offering, the other for a sin offering, might be accepted. [32] This offering...was to consist of a lamb of the first year for a burnt-offering, and a young pigeon or a turtle-dove for a sin-offering. With that consideration for the poor ... it was provided that if the mother were not able to furnish a lamb, a pair of turtle-doves or two young pigeons were to be accepted, the one for the burnt-offering, and the other for the sin-offering.
The Desire of Ages (cont'd) The Life and Times of Jesus the Messiah Alfred Edersheim 1883 (1967 ed.)
[50]    The offerings presented to the Lord were to be without blemish. These offerings represented Christ, and from this it is evident that Jesus Himself was free from physical deformity. He was the “lamb without blemish and without spot.” 1 Peter 1:19. His physical structure was not marred by any defect; His body as strong and healthy. And throughout His lifetime He lived in conformity to nature’s laws. Physically as well as spiritually, He was an example of what God designed all humanity to be through obedience to His laws. [194] The child must be free from all such bodily blemishes as would have disqualified him for the priesthood.
The Desire of Ages (cont'd) The Life and Words of Christ Cunningham Geikie 1883
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[130] He must have been, in all points, without physical blemish.

The Desire of Ages (cont'd) The Life of Christ William Hanna 1863
[51]    The dedication of the firstborn had its origin in the earliest times. God had promised to give the First-born of heaven to save the sinner. This gift was to be acknowledged in every household by the consecration of the First-born son. He was to be devoted to the priesthood, as a representative of Christ among men. [34]    The first-born invested with a double sacredness, as peculiarly the redeemed of the Lora, would have been consecrated to the office of the priesthood. ...

Deliverance of Egyptian bondage was itself a type and prophecy of another higher and wider deliverance, and especially of the manner in which that deliverance was to be wrought out.

Compare also: Hanna, Our Lord’s Life on Earth 1883 p. 13.
In the deliverance of Israel from Egypt, the dedication of the first-born was again commanded. While the children of Israel were in bondage to the Egyptians, the Lord directed Moses to go to Pharaoh, king of Egypt, and say, “Thus saith the Lord, Israel is My son, even My firstborn: and I say unto thee, Let My son go, that he may serve Me: and if thou refuse to let him go, behold, I will slay thy son, even thy first-born.” Ex. 4:22,23. [33]    When Moses first got his commission from the Lord in Midian, and was told to go and work out the great deliverance of his people from their Egyptian bondage, the last instruction he received was this: “And thou shalt say unto Pharaoh, Thus saith the Lord, Israel is my son, even my first-born. And I say unto thee, Let my son go, that he may serve me: and if thou refuse to let him go, behold, I will slay thy son, even thy first-born.” Ex. 4:22,23.
[51] Moses delivered his message; but the proud king’s answer was, “Who is the Lord, that I should obey His voice to let Israel go? I know not the Lord, neither will I let Israel go.” Ex. 5:2. The Lord worked for His people by signs and wonders, sending terrible judgments upon Pharaoh. At length the destroying angel was bidden to slay the first-born of man and beast among the Egyptians. That the Israelites might be spared, they were directed to place upon their door-posts the blood of a slain lamb. Every house was to be marked, that when the angel came on his mission of death, he might pass over the homes of the Israelites. [33] But the king’s haughty answer to the demand was: “Who is the Lord, that I should obey his voice to let Israel go?” Sign after sign was shown, wonder after wonder wrought...but the spirit of the proud king remained unbroken. ... At last...the sword was put into the hands of the destroying angel...which...fell actually only upon the first-born in every family. ... But the first-born of Israel was saved...not without the sacrifice of the lamb, for every household had the sprinkling of its shed blood upon the lintel and door-post.

[51] After sending this judgment upon Egypt, the Lord said to Moses, “Sanctify unto Me all the first born... both of man and of beast: it is Mine;” “for on the day that I smote all the first-born in the land of Egypt I hallowed unto Me all the first-born of Israel, both man and beast: Mine shall they be: I am the Lord.” Ex. 13:2, Num. 3:13. After the tabernacle service was established, the Lord chose the tribe of Levi in the place of the first-born of all Israel to minister in the sanctuary. But the first-born were still to be regarded as the Lord’s; and were to be bought back by a ransom. [33-4] It was to preserve and perpetuate the memory of this judgment and this mercy...that the Lord spake unto Moses, saying, “Sanctify unto me all the first-born, both of man and beast; it is mine: for on the day that I smote all the first-born in the land of Egypt, I hallowed unto me all the firstborn in Israel; mine they shall be: I am the Lord. And it shall be, when thy son asketh thee in time to come. ... ” Ex.13:1, Num. 3:13. ... The tribe of Levi was set apart that it might supply all the priests required for the services of the sanctuary; and the firstborn...were redeemed.

[51] Thus the law for the presentation of the first-born was made particularly significant. While it was a memorial of the Lord’s wonderful deliverance of the children of Israel, it prefigured a greater deliverance, to be wrought out by the only-begotten Son of God. As the blood sprinkled on the doorposts had saved the firstborn of Israel, so the blood of Christ has power to save the world. [34]    This rite...had a double character and office. It was a standing memorial or remembrancer of...the deliverance of their forefathers from the bondage of Egypt and especially of the shielding of their first-born... ; but the deliverance from Egyptian bondage was itself a type and prophecy of another higher and wider deliverance...that deliverance was to be wrought out.

[52]    What meaning then was attached to Christ’s presentation! But the priest did not see through the veil; he did not read the mystery beyond. The presentation of infants was a common scene. Day after day the priest received the redemption money as the babes were presented to the Lord. Day after day he went through the routine of his work, giving little heed to the parents of children, unless he saw some indication of the wealth or high rank of the parents. Joseph and Mary were poor; and when they came with their child, the priests saw only a man and woman dressed as Galileans, and in the humblest garments. There was nothing in their appearance to attract attention, and they presented only the offering made by the poorer classes. [32] It was part of the daily routine work of the priest-in-waiting to take their payments, to hold up the children before the altar, to enroll their names in the register of the firstborn, and so to complete the dedication...without giving much attention either to parents or to child, unless indeed there was something special in their rank, or their appearance, or their offerings... But here...a poor man and woman, in humblest guise...present themselves.
[53]    The priest went through the ceremony of his official work. He took the child in his arms, and held it up before the altar. After handing it back to its mother, the inscribed the name “Jesus” on the roll of the firstborn. Little did he think, as the babe lay in his arms, that it was the Majesty of heaven, the King of glory. The priest did not think that this babe was the One of whom Moses had written, “A Prophet shall the Lord your God raise up unto you of your brethren, like unto me; Him shall ye hear in all things whatsoever He shall say unto you.” Acts 3:22. He did not think that this babe was He whose glory Moses had asked to see. But One greater than Moses lay in the priest’s arms; and when he enrolled the child’s name, he was enrolling the name of One who was the foundation of the whole Jewish economy. That name was to be its death warrant, for the system of sacrifices and offerings was waxing old; the type had almost reached its antitype, the shadow its substance. [33] The woman holds out her first-born babe; he takes, presents, enrolls, and hands it back to her. ...

[35]    How little did that Jewish priest, who took the infant Saviour and held him up before the altar, imagine that a greater than Moses, one greater than the temple, was in his arms. How little did he imagine, as he inscribed the new name of Jesus in the roll of the first-born of Israel, that he was signing the death-warrant of the Mosaic economy now waxing old and ready to vanish away.

[52] The Shekinah had departed from the sanctuary, but in the Child of Bethlehem was veiled the glory before which angels bow. This unconscious babe was the promised seed, to whom the first altar at the gate of Eden pointed. This was Shiloh, the peace giver. It was He who declared Himself to Moses as the I AM. It was He who in the pillar of cloud and of fire had been the guide of Israel. This was He whom seers had long foretold. He was the Desire of all nations, the Root and the Offspring of David, and the Bright and Morning Star. The name of that helpless little babe, inscribed in the roll of Israel, declaring Him our brother, was the hope of fallen humanity. The child for whom the redemption money had been paid was He who was to pay the ransom for the sins of the whole world. He was the true “high priest over the house of God,” the head of “an unchangeable priesthood,” the intercessor at “the right hand of the Majesty on high.” Heb. 10:21; 7:24; 1:3. [35]    Who is this child that lies so passive on its mother’s breast, and all unconscious of what is being done with him, is handled by the officiating priest? He is, as his birth had proclaimed him to be, one of the seed of Abraham, and yet he afterwards said of himself, “Before Abraham was, I am.” ... He is...the root as well as the branch of David. ... He is the firstborn of Mary, but he is also the firstborn of every creature, the beginning of the creation of God... Here then at last is the Lord, the Jehovah, whom so many of the Jews were seeking...

Here is the Lamb of God. ... Here is the one and only true High Priest over the house of God, consecrated to his office, of whose all prevailing, everlasting, and unchangeable priesthood, the Aaronic priesthood, the priesthood of the first-born, was but the dim shadow. ... Here is the he enters upon that life of service...not by the blood of bulls and goats, but by his own blood...having obtained eternal redemption for us.

[55]    Spiritual things are spiritually discerned. In the temple the Son of God was dedicated to the work He had come to do. The priest looked upon Him as he would any other child. But though he neither saw nor felt anything unusual, God’s act in giving His Son to the world was acknowledged. This occasion did not pass without some recognition of Christ. “There was a man in Jerusalem, whose name was Simeon; and the same man was just and devout, waiting for the Consolation of Israel: and the Holy Ghost was upon him. And it was revealed unto him by the Holy Ghost, that he should not see death, before he had seen the Lord’s Christ.” [36]    Humanity in every land should worship him who is a Spirit in spirit and in truth. Yet even so it was; Christ’s first entrance into the temple, his dedication there unto the Lord, was no...common ceremonial. ... It was nothing else than the first formal earthly presentation to the Father of the incarnate Son of God, his first formal earthly dedication to that great work given him to do.
[55]    As Simeon enters the temple, he sees a family, presenting their first-born son before the priest. Their appearance bespeaks poverty; but Simeon understands the warnings of the Spirit, and he is deeply impressed that the infant being presented to the Lord is the Consolation of Israel, the One he has longed to see. To the astonished priest, Simeon appears like a man enraptured. The child has been returned to Mary, and he takes it in his arms and presents it to God, while a joy that he has never before felt enters his soul. As he lifts the infant Saviour toward heaven, he says, “Lord, now lettest Thou Thy servant depart in peace, according to Thy word: for mine eyes have seen Thy salvation, which Thou hast prepared before the face of all people; a light to lighten the Gentiles, and the glory of Thy people Israel.” [36]    It was revealed to him [Simeon] that the desire of his heart should be granted. ... He enters the temple courts; he notices a little family group... That infant, an inward voice proclaims to him, is the Messiah he has been waiting for, the Consolation of Israel... Then comes into his heart a joy beyond all bounds. ... [37] He hastens up to Mary, takes from the wondering yet consenting mother’s hands the consecrated babe, and clasping it to his beating bosom, with eyes uplifted to heaven, he says, “Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace, according to thy word; for mine eyes have seen thy salvation, which thou hast prepared before the face of all people; a light to lighten the Gentiles, and the glory of thy people Israel.”
[55]    The spirit of prophecy was upon this man of God, and while Joseph and Mary stood by, wondering at his words, he blessed them, and said unto Mary, “Behold, this child is set for the fall and rising again of many in Israel; and for a sign which shall be spoken against; (yea, a sword shall pierce through thy own soul also), that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed.” [37]    Simeon sees the wonder...the spirit of prophecy imparted...he goes on, after a gentle blessing bestowed upon both parents...particularly to Mary. ... “Behold,” he said to her, “This child of thine is set for the fall and rising again of many in Israel.” ...

[38]    “Yea, a sword shall pierce through thine own soul also.”

[55] Anna also, a prophetess, came in and confirmed Simeon’s testimony concerning Christ. As Simeon spoke, her face lighted up with the glory of God, and she poured out her heartfelt thanks that she had been permitted to behold Christ the Lord. [39] Simeon’s prophetic portraiture of the intention and effect of the Redeemer, had scarcely been completed when another testimony was added, that of aged Anna. ... Her song of praise was added to that of Simeon. ... She was moved to go about and speak of the Lord.
[56]    Mary pondered the broad and far-reaching prophecy of Simeon. As she looked upon the child in her arms, and recalled the words spoken by the Shepherds of Bethlehem, she was full of grateful joy and bright hope. Simeon’s words called to her mind the prophetic utterances of Isaiah: “There shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse, and a Branch shall grow out of His roots: and the Spirit of the Lora shall rest upon Him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the Lord....And righteousness shall he the girdle of His loins, and faithfulness the girdle of His reins.” “The people that walked in darkness have seen a great light: they that dwell in the land of the shadow of death, upon them hath the light shined.... For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon His shoulder: and His name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace.” Isa. 11:1-5; 9:2-6. [38] From all Mary had yet heard, she might have imagined that her child would be welcomed by all Israel. ... But now, for the first time, the indication is clearly given that all Israel was not to hail her child and welcome him as its Messiah. ... Strange ... now when her heart was filling with strange, bright hopes...this prophecy should have been thus early spoken.
[56]    Yet Mary did not understand Christ’s mission. Simeon had prophesied of Him as a light to lighten the Gentiles, as well as a glory to Israel. Thus the angels had announced the Saviour’s birth as tidings of joy to all peoples. God was seeking to correct the narrow, Jewish conception of the Messiah’s work. He desired men to behold Him, not merely as the deliverer of Israel, but as the Redeemer of the world. But many years must pass before even the mother of Jesus would understand his mission.

Mary looked forward to the Messiah’s reign on David’s throne, but she saw not the baptism of suffering by which it must be won. Through Simeon it is revealed that the Messiah is to have no unobstructed passage through the world. In the words of Mary, “A sword shall pierce through thy own soul also,” Goa in His tender mercy gives to the mother of Jesus an intimation of the anguish that had already for His sake she had begun to bear.

[37]    Joseph and Mary stand lost in wonder. How has this stranger come to see aught uncommon in this child; how come to see in him the salvation of Israel? Have some stray tidings of his birth come into the holy city from the hill country of Judea, or has the wondrous tale the shepherds of Bethlehem “made known abroad,” been repeated in this old man’s hearing? What he says is in curious harmony with all the angel had announced to Mary and to the shepherds about the child, yet there is a difference; for now, for the first time, is it distinctly declared that this child shall be a light to lighten the Gentiles; nay, his being such a light is placed even before his being the glory of Israel. Has Simeon independent and fuller testimony borne to the Messiahship of Jesus?

[38]    Nor was Mary herself to escape. ... “Yea, a sword shall pierce through thine own soul also”...a singular token of the tender sympathy to prepare and fortify her for tine bitter trials in store for her, this prophecy should have been thus early spoken.

[56]    “Behold,” Simeon had said, “this child is set for the fall and rising again of many in Israel; and for a sign which shall he spoken against” They must fall who would rise again. We must fall upon the Rock and be broken before we can be uplifted in Christ. Self must be dethroned, pride must be humbled, if we would know the glory of the spiritual kingdom. The Jews would not accept the honor that is reached through humiliation. Therefore they would not receive their Redeemer. He was a sign that was spoken against. [37] “Behold,” he said to her, “this child of thine is set for the fall and rising again of many in Israel.” He may have meant, in saying so, that the purpose and effect of the Lord’s showing unto Israel would be the casting down of many in order to the raising of them up again; the casting of them down from their earlier, worldlier thoughts and expectations, in order to the lifting them to higher, worthier, more spiritual conceptions. ... Some were to rise, others were to fall. ...

[38] He was to be a “sign which should be spoken against.”

The Desire of Ages (Cont’d) The Great Teacher John Harris 1836 (1870 ed.)
[57]    “That the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed.” In the light of the Saviour’s life, the hearts of all, even from the Creator to the prince of darkness, are revealed. Satan has represented God as selfish and oppressive, as claiming all, and giving nothing, as requiring the service of His creatures for His own glory, and making no sacrifice for their good. But the gift of Christ reveals the Father’s heart. It testifies that the thoughts of God toward us are “Thoughts of peace, and not of evil.” Jer. 29:11. It declares that while God’s hatred of sin is as strong as death, His love for the sinner is stronger than death. Having undertaken our redemption He will spare nothing, however dear, which is necessary to the completion of His work. No truth essential to our salvation is withheld, no miracle of mercy is neglected, no divine agency is left unemployed. Favor is heaped upon favor, gift upon gift. The whole treasury of heaven is open to those He seeks to save. Having collected the riches of the universe, and laid open the resources of infinite power, He gives them all into the hands of Christ, and says, All these are for man. Use these gifts to convince him that there is no love greater than Mine in earth or heaven. His greatest happiness will be found in loving Me.

[40] Finally, Christ is the great Revealer of the thoughts and intents of the heart. Are we proud, are we covetous, are, we worldly, are we self-willed? ... In that struggle the spirit unconsciously revealeth its true conditions before God...

[96] He showed us that, while the hatred of God against sin is strong as death, his love to sinners is yet stronger than death.

[90]    For what adequate reason...could this mighty transfer have been made — this transfer of all things into the hands of the incarnate Savior, if not for the purpose of employing and making them known? ... [91] It was committed to him with a commission to make it known. ...

[91]    In exalting the character of God he was virtually magnifying his own. ...

[95] Did he join himself to our nature? It was to show us that God would have us be in the closest union with himself, and that, as we cannot possibly be happy without him, so neither can his love be satisfied without us. ...

To convince us, therefore, that there was no dissentient principle in the character of God...they should now be all collected, and concentrated, and put forth in some mighty act of grace.

[57]    At the cross of Calvary, love and selfishness stood face to face. Here was their crowning manifestation. Christ had lived only to comfort and bless, and in putting Him to death, Satan manifested the malignity of his hatred against God. He made it evident that the real purpose of his rebellion was to dethrone God, and to destroy Him through whom the love of Goa was shown. [97] Calvary was selected for the eventful scene. ... Love and hatred confronted each other. At that moment, of all the passions and principles in the universe, these two antagonist powers alone remained. ... The object of one was to unite its whole force...into one annihilating stroke.
The Desire of Ages (Cont’d) The Life of Christ William Hanna 1863
[57]    By the life and death of Christ, the thoughts of men also are brought to view. From the manger to the cross, the life of Jesus was a call to self-surrender, and to fellowship in suffering. It unveiled the purposes of men. Jesus came with the truth of heaven, and all who were listening to the voice of the Holy Spirit were drawn to Him. The worshipers of self belonged to Satan’s kingdom. In their attitude toward Christ, all would show on which side they stood. And thus everyone passes judgment on himself. [40] Finally, Christ is the great Revealer of the thoughts and intents of the heart. ... Bring them near, force them home upon the conscience and the heart; then it is that the inward struggle begins; and in that struggle the spirit unconsciously revealeth its true condition before God.

References and Notes

1. Ellen C. White, The Spirit of Prophecy (Battle Creek: Review and Herald, 1870­1884), vol. 2, p. 5.

2. Robert W. Olson, "EGW's Use of Uninspired Sources," photocopied (Washington: EGW Estate, 9 November 1979), pp. 1­4, 7, 8.

3. William S. Peterson, "Ellen White's Literary Indebtedness," Spectrum 3, no. 4 (Autumn 1971): 73­84. Since Peterson's article, others have appeared in Spectrum each year since 1971.

4. Neal C. Wilson to Glendale Committee on EGW Sources, 8 January 1980.

5. Jerry Wiley to Neal C. Wilson, 14 January 1980.

6. Donald R. McAdams, "Shifting views of Inspiration Spectrum 10, no. 4 (March 1980): 38.

7. Ibid., pp. 34­35.

8. Glendale Committee, "Ellen G. White and Her Sources," tapes (28­29 January 1980), McAdams remarks.

9. Ibid.

10. McAdams, "Shifting Views, "Spectrum 10, no. 4 (March, 1980): 35.

11. Ibid.

12. EGW, The Spirit of Prophecy, vol. 4, supplement quoting W. C. White's letter to W. W. Eastman, 12 May 1969, pp. 545­46.

13. Ibid., p. 535.

14. Olson, "Ellen C. White and Her Sources," tapes of address to Adventist Forum at Loma Linda, CA (January 1979).

15. Olson to EGW Estate Trustees, 29 November 1978, pp. 1­2.

16. Ibid., p. 5.

17. Glendale Committee, tapes, 28­29 January 1980.

18. Arthur L. White, "(Confidential) Comments on the Proposed Study of 'Desire of Ages,"' photocopied (Washington: EGW Estate, 5 December 1978),

19. Ibid., p. 5.

20. W. W. Prescott to DF 198).

W. C. White, 6 April 1915 (Washington: EGW Estate.

21. McAdams, "Shifting Views," Spectrum 10, no. 4 (Autumn 1971): 36­37.

22. Raymond F. Cottrell and Walter S. Specht, "The Literary Relationship between he Desire of Ages, by Ellen G. White, and The Life of Christ, by William Hanna, 2,pts, photocopied (Loma Linda University Library, Archives and Special Collections, I November 1979), pt. 2.

23. Ibid., pt. l.

24. Ibid., pt. l, pp. 3­4.

25. McAdams, "Shifting Views," Spectrum 10, no. 4 (Autumn 1971): 37.

26. Cottrell and Specht, "The Literary Relationship between EGW and WH," pt. l, p. 5.

27. Ibid.

28. See Appendix, Chapter 6 Comparison Exhibits showing Ellen G. White and William Hanna similarities.

29. Ibid.

30. Ibid.

31. John Dart, "Adventists Cite Legal Opinion To 'Clear' Prophet of Plagiarism, "Los Angeles Times (19 September 1981).

32. Raymond F. Cottrell, "Our Present Grisis: Reaction to a Decade of Obscurantism," photocopied draft.

33. Ibid.

34. [Unsigned editorial announcement], Adventist Review (27 November 1980).

35 Fred Veltman, "Report to PREXAD on the E. G. White Research Project; photocopied (Angwin, CA Life of Christ Research Project, n.d. [April 1981]), p. 21.

36. Ibid., p. 21.

37. Ibid., p. 22.

38. Ibid., pp. 24­25.

39. [Unsigned editorial announcement], "Ellen White's Use of Sources," Adventist Review (17 September 1981), p. 3. Also interviews Wlt attorney Victor L. Remik, pp. 4­6, and Warren L. Johns, p. 7.

40. Peter C. Drewer to Neal C. Wilson, 27 May 1981, p. 3.

41. D. Arthur Delafield to Peter C. Drewer, 24 June 1981, pp. 1, 5.

42. Ibid., p. 5.

43. [Seventh­day Adventists], Seventh­day Adventists Answer Questions on Doctrine (Washington: RHPA, 1957), pp.89­9u.

44 W. C. White, "The Integrity of the Testimonies," presented at College View; Nebraska, 25 November 1905. EGW Estate DF 10 i, pp. 7­8, 11.

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