Ellen G. White Writings

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Selected Messages Book 2, Page 482

Life Companion,” she admonished, “should be such as best to secure physical, mental, and spiritual well-being for parents and for their children.”—The Ministry of Healing, 357.

In these writings the influence of the home is ever kept before the church. She called upon those looking toward marriage to consider well the influence of the particular union contemplated. To this end she urged that there should be no selfishness or covetousness or shortsighted decisions. (See footnote.) She called upon men and women who were planning to marry to “distinguish between what is pleasing and what is profitable” (Letter 4, 1901). She observed that “it is from the marriage hour that many men and women date their success or failure in this life, and their hopes of the future life.”—The Adventist Home, 43.

Compatibility, Ellen White held, was vitally essential to a happy marriage. She wrote of “lifelong wretchedness” which may result from a union of those “not adapted to each other” (Patriarchs and Prophets, 189). In a message to youth she declared:

“The world is full of misery and sin today in consequence of ill-assorted marriages. In many cases it takes only a few months for husband and wife to realize that their dispositions can never blend; and the result is that discord prevails in the home, where only the love and harmony of heaven should exist.”—The Youth's Instructor, August 10, 1899; Messages to Young People, 453; and The Adventist Home, 83.

She sounded a warning against “a great disparity in age” of those contemplating marriage, which could result in “impairing the health of the younger” partner and could rob the children “of physical and mental strength” (The Ministry of Healing, 358).

The state of health of the partners of a contemplated marriage Ellen White stressed as an important factor. “Sickly men have often won the affections of women apparently healthy, and because they loved each other, they felt themselves at perfect liberty to marry, neither considering that by their union the wife must be a sufferer, more or less, because of the diseased husband.”—Selected Messages 2:423. And then she carries the matter to its logical conclusion: “If those who thus enter the marriage relation were alone concerned, the sin would not be so great. Their offspring are compelled to be sufferers by disease transmitted to them.”— Ibid.

The ability of the partners in a marriage to sustain themselves financially also was presented by Ellen White as a

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