Ellen G. White Writings

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Ellen G. White: The Early Years: 1827-1862 (vol. 1), Page 316

Chapter 20—(1855) Settling Administrative and Theological Questions

The year 1855 was a time when important administrative and theological problems were settled—the status and future of the Review and Herald office, and the time to begin the Sabbath. Both came to a culmination late in the year.

The issue of the Review dated February 20, 1855, carried an editorial written by James White titled “The Office.” In this he described the rather desperate situation he was in as proprietor, financial agent, and editor. His repeated appeals to the readers for stronger support had gone largely unheeded. Not only was he burdened with financial embarrassment, but there was also the “unreasonableness of ‘false brethren’” comprising the Messenger party. He pointed out that he was laboring from fourteen to eighteen hours a day. Altogether, this nearly ruined the health of 34-year-old James White. He made a rather startling declaration:

We cannot expect a tolerable state of health without a complete change in many respects. We are resolved on this change, even if we leave the office entirely. We hope to live, and, if possible, yet do some little good in the world.

Had we a constitution that could endure care and toil, we would cheerfully wear it out in the holy cause of Bible truth; but having worn out a good constitution in this cause, we can now hope for no more, than that by rest, and care, with the blessing of God, we may yet be able to do something....

Without capital, and without health, we cannot much longer bear the burden.—The Review and Herald, February 20, 1855.

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