Ellen G. White Writings

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Ellen G. White: The Early Elmshaven Years: 1900-1905 (vol. 5), Page 187

Chapter 14—God Reproves His Messenger

Soon after the month-long trip to southern California Ellen White passed through one of the most difficult and excruciating experiences of her life. It involved the developing work in the South, which as has been noted was very close to her heart. It involved her own son, James Edson White. In this experience the Lord in vision severely reproved His messenger.

Prophets of God were far from automatons. Through many visions their minds were enlightened, sometimes in direct instruction, sometimes through symbols and figures. They were often carried ahead into the future, shown what will take place, and given a line of instruction that would give direction for that situation when the time came. Again, based upon the wealth of the visions given over a period of many years, prophets were often called upon to speak, basing their messages on principles, giving approval to certain proposals and procedures, and pointing out the perils and hazards of other proposals and procedures. This was true with the prophets in Bible times, and it was true in Ellen White's experience.

She exercised great care in refraining from expressing her own viewpoints in matters relating to the development of the cause of God and in spiritual lines. Often she remained silent when matters were brought before her concerning which she had no foundation in the visions to provide an adequate answer. In a later year when a theological question was placed before her, she remarked, “‘I have no light on the subject.... Please tell my brethren that I have nothing presented before me regarding the circumstances concerning which they write, and I can set before them only that which has

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