G. White -- the Myth and the Truth
by Å. Kaspersen
-Ellen G. White and the Bible
In the plagiarized book
Patriarchs and Prophets, "Ellen White" says on pp. 354-6,
"The most important part of the daily ministration was the service performed
in behalf of individuals. The repentant sinner brought his offering to the door
of the tabernacle, and, placing his hand upon the victim's head, confessed his
sins, thus in figure transferring them from himself to the innocent sacrifice.
By his own hand the animal was then slain, and the blood was carried
by the priest into the holy place and sprinkled before the veil, behind
which was the ark containing the law that the sinner had transgressed. By this
ceremony the sin was, through the blood, transferred in figure to the sanctuary.
. . .Such was the work that went on day by day throughout the year.
. . . Such was the service performed 'unto the example and shadow of heavenly
things.' Hebrews 8:5." (Patriarchs and Prophets, pp. 354-356. Emphasis supplied.)
This statement does not square with the Bible. Nowhere does it say that the
blood for the common Israelite was carried into the sanctuary. This is a fact
everyone can check out for himself by some careful reading of the books of Leviticus
and Numbers. The blood of sin-offering for the common Israelite was
poured out at the foot of the altar of burnt-offering, and was not carried into
the sanctuary. There were just two cases when the blood was carried
into the sanctuary: when the anointed priest had sinned, or when the entire
congregation had committed sin.
In order to save Ellen White and the Adventist teaching, it is commonly claimed
that the priest should eat the flesh of the sin-offering, and thus carrying
the blood into the sanctuary. There's a problem with this explanation. The Israelites,
including the priest, were commanded not to eat flesh with blood in it. Whomsoever
did that, were to be cut off from the congregation. The blood should be drained
from the meat; then the meat should be washed out before eating it ("kosher
meat"). The Jews continue this practice to this day.
It is strange that adventists, who claim to possess the "true sanctuary teaching"
as one one of their cardinal doctrines, are publishing books which miss the
mark on such important question in their sanctuary teaching. However, later
editions of the book Patriarchs and Prophets, has an appendix where the fact
is being pointed out (in small type!), eg. telling us that the book contains
statements that are not in harmony with the Bible.
If the above statement is original with Ellen White, it is obvious that she
had not understood the Old Testament sacrificial system well enough, then the
statement of course is not inspired. It is more plausible that the statement
had been borrowed from other authors who had not read their Bible carefully
enough. If this is the case, the statement was copied straight into Patriarchs
and Prophets with errors and all. People who claim that "God showed her what
to copy and what to omit" - eg. filter away what was not correct, should think
about this.. We are finding several such occurences in her writings, especially
the book The Great Controversy, also in The Desire of Ages, as we have discussed
in a previous chapter.
Here is another statement where Ellen White contradicts both herself and the
"He is today standing
at the altar of incense, presenting before God the prayers of those
who desire His help." (Desire of Ages, p. 568. Emphasis supplied.)
"This door was not opened until
the mediation of Jesus was finished in the holy place of the sanctuary in
1844. Then Jesus rose up and shut the door of the holy place, and opened the
door into the most holy, and passed within the second veil, where He now stands
by the ark, and where the faith of Israel now reaches. I saw that Jesus had
shut the door of the holy place, and no man can open it; and that He had opened
the door into the most holy, and no man can shut it (Rev. 3:7,8)."
(Early Writings, p. 42. Emphasis supplied.)
On pp. 55-6 in the same book, Ellen
White says that it is Satan who at this time apparently stands in the first
apartment of the heavenly sanctuary, to which the "useless" prayers go for them
who did not follow Jesus into the Most Holy in 1844.
Here we have a contradiction. In
1898 she says that Jesus today stands before the altar of incence,
ministering the prayers of the saints. All well-informed SDA's know pretty well
that the altar of incence was located in the first apartment,
before the veil which separated the two apartments in the earthly sanctuary.
In 1882, based on earlier visions, Ellen White says that Jesustoday
is standing before the ark, and has left the first apartment and "shut
the door" to the first apartment - and none can open it. Any well-informed adventist
know that the ark was located in the Most Holy, the second apartment,
within the veil. Ellen White is saying that Jesus today is standing
in both apartments, in spite of what she says in Early Writings, and in her
early visions, that Jesus today has left the first apartment, where the altar
of incence was located, and "shut the door" to this apartment.
Apart from the SDA teaching on 1844
etc., which is unbiblical, and the concept of two distinct apartements in heaven,
which most probably is equally unbiblical, Ellen White contradicts herself in
these two statements. The statement in Desire of Ages is most probably borrowed
from another author, and this adds to the confusion - but she approved of the
stolen literary goods.
Ellen White says that she went into
the New Jerusalem temple,
"I saw an angel flying swiftly to
me. He quickly carried me from the earth to the Holy City. In the city
I saw a temple, which I entered. I passed through a door before I came
to the first veil." (Early Writings, p. 32. Emphasis supplied.)
But the Bible says,
"And I saw no temple therein
[the City of God]: for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the temple
of it" (Rev. 21:22.)
Ellen White saw (and entered) a
temple in the New Jerusalem. John says that he did not see a temple in the New
Jerusalem. Who was right?
There are many similar self-contradictions
in her writings, including statements which do not square with the Bible. This
is not that strange, when we consider the fact that her writings are put together
from Ellen White's own material, mixed up with external material from scores
of other authors.
Ellen White says that she saw in
a vision that both the Father and the Son were sitting on a throne in the first
apartment of the heavenly sanctuary. According to the adventist teaching, Jesus
had performed a ministry in the first apartment of the heavenly sanctuary for
1800 years, from 31. A.D to 1844 A.D. But Ellen White also teaches that not
only the Son, but also the Father was sitting on a throne in the first apartment
all these years.
"In February, 1845, I had a vision
of events commencing with the Midnight Cry. I saw a throne and on it
sat the Father and the Son. . . . And I saw the Father rise from the throne,
and in a flaming Chariot go into the Holy of Holies, within the veil,
and did sit. There I saw thrones that I had never seen before. Then Jesus rose
up from the throne. . . . And I saw a cloudy chariot, with wheels like flaming
fire, and Angels were all around it as it came where Jesus was. He stepped
into the chariot and was borne to the Holiest where the Father sat."
(From the Broadside, To the Little Remnant Scattered Abroad. Emphasis supplied.)
This view can not by any means be
harmonized with Scripture. For proofs, see the chapter on A.F. Ballenger.
God does not love dishonest
"The Lord loves those
little children who try to do right, and he has promised that they shall be
in his kingdom. But wicked children God does not love." (An
Appeal to the Youth, p. 61. Emphasis supplied.)
"God loves honest-hearted, truthful
children, but cannot love those who are dishonest." (Ibid,
p. 42. Emphasis supplied.)
How come that God loves his enemies,
which the Bible tells us, but not dishonest children?
The Bible alone
Ellen White says
that God will have a people on earth who maintain the Bible and the Bible
onlyas their sole basis for all doctrines (Spirit
of Prophecy, Vol. 4, p. 413). If we are to follow this admonition, which by
the way is biblical, it becomes impossible to defend the above statements (and
many others) by the Bible alone.
Then, from an adventist point of
view, we have been entangled into the following situation,
1. If we are to believe
Ellen White's contradictory visions, we are in conflict with Bible, but not
with "the Spirit of Prophecy", which adventists believe is Ellen G. White and
2. If we are not to believe
Ellen White's contradictory visions, we are in conflict with "the Spirit of
Prophecy", but not with the Bible.
Now the admonition from volume four
of the Spirit of Prophechy is clearly in harmony with the Bible, but if we are
to follow the admonition, we find ourselves in conflict with "the Spirit of
Prophecy!". What it boils down to, is this: Ellen White's statement in 4SP 413
is in harmony with the Bible, but definitely not in harmony with Ellen White's
visions. Then we have a plain contradiction in her book!
One has to choose between Ellen
White's visions or the Bible. A compromise is impossible. Which are we to choose?
We will stick to the Bible, God's
Holy Word, the infallible rule through the ages.
The Altar of incence
Regarding Ellen White's
statement in Desire of Ages, where it says that Jesus today stands at the altar
of incence and presents our prayers, in contradiction to the view presented
in Early Writings, somebody would probably point to Paul's words in Heb. 9:3,4,
"And after the second veil, the
tabernacle which is called the Holiest of all; Which had the golden
censer, and the ark of the covenant overlaid round about with gold,
wherein was the golden pot that had manna, and Aaron's rod that budded, and
the tables of the covenant."
Here Paul says that the altar of
incence in the earthly tabernacle was located in the Most Holy. All avid Bible
readers are well aware that the only piece of furniture in the Most Holy, was
the Ark of the Covenant with the Mercy Seat. The altar of incence was located
in the first apartment,before the veil which separated the
two apartments. See Exodus 40:26. All knowledgeable SDA's should probably know
this. In addition to the plain teachings of the Bible, numerous sketches and
drawings of the tabernacle testify to this. Of course Paul knew this fact. He
was a man of learning who would not miss the mark when it came to such an important
detail. What he really means by his statement, is rather unclear. Not even the
voluminous SDA Bible Commentary has any reasonable explanation other than perhaps
Paul placed the altar of incence in the Most Holy in a "symbolic way" inasmuch
as this altar was closely connected to the Ark.
If we for the sake of argument are
saying that the altar of incence was located in the Most Holy in the heavenly
sanctuary, and that Ellen White therefore is correct in her statement, the whole
SDA sanctuary teaching will fall like a house of cards. It is claimed that the
earthly, Mosaic tabernacle was an exact replica of the heavenly sanctuary. The
mosaic tabernacle was divided into two distinct apartments, separated by a veil,
and the altar of incense was located before that veil, but in the first apartment.
If the altar of incense in the heavenly sanctuary is located in the Most Holy,
the concept of two distinct apartments in this sanctuary vanishes as dew before
the sun, and give nourishment to the idea that there really are not two such
apartments in the heavenly sanctuary. But then the SDA idea that Jesus performed
a ministry for 1800 years in "the first apartment" and went into "the second
apartment" in 1844, tumbles down - and then we have the domino-effect. No two
distinct apartments in the heavenly sanctuary like the mosaic tabernacle, no
SDA sanctuary teaching. It's as simple as that. Ellen White's statement in Desire
of Ages stands in contradiction with statements in her early visions and in
the book Early Writings.