Ellen G. White Writings

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Manuscript Releases, vol. 7 [Nos. 419-525], Page 112

went before His people to battle against their enemies, but holy and consecrated ones bore the ark containing the ten precepts of Jehovah, and if any had transgressed any one of these ten commandments in the decalogue God turned His face from His people and suffered the enemy to make a dreadful slaughter. If Israel kept the ten precepts, a copy of which was contained in the ark they bore with them, God's angels fought with the armies of Israel, and although their numbers were ever so small, He turned back their enemies and gave them a triumphant victory.

Sabbathkeepers now cannot expect this, and should not, upon any consideration, engage in this terrible war. They have nothing to hope for. The desolating power of God is upon the earth to rend and destroy; the inhabitants of the earth are appointed to the sword, famine, and pestilence.—Manuscript 5, 1862, 1, 2. (“Regarding the Civil War,” circa 1862.)

[Note: The strong statement appearing in the last paragraph counseling against Seventh-day Adventists participating in the Civil War, much akin to Testimonies for the Church 1:361, “I was shown that God's people, who are His peculiar treasure, cannot engage in this perplexing war, for it is opposed to every principle of their faith,” etc., should be read in the light of the fact that in 1862 military service was by voluntary enlistment only. With the enactment of laws creating a draft for military service, Congress provided for non-combatant service on the part of men opposed to bearing arms. Ellen White at no time opposed service in the Civil War under the provisions of these draft laws. See Testimonies for the Church 1:716-718 Appendix .—R. W. Olson]

Released June 18, 1975.

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