Some critics have accused Ellen White of plagiarizing the contents of The Desire of Ages from the writings of various authors. But, did she really? Below is an analysis of the alleged comparisons.
This example can be found on page 310 of Rea's book. I have also added Dr. Veltman's study on this chapter, pages 199-216 (Like Dr. Veltman, but unlike Rea, I'll completely skip over the Bible texts).
It has been noted by students of plagiarism that one can make a work look like it was plagiarized when it is not by carefully using ellipses and discarding all the material that is different. What we want to do is determine whether the critics did a fair analysis, or whether their comparisons actually distorted reality. Accordingly, we have coded the text so that you, the reader, can easily come to your own conclusion. Material that is not coded means that neither the critics nor Dr. Veltman and his team of researchers, could not, or did not, find anything worthy of note.
Material in Ellen G. White that is an exact, word-for-word match to her alleged source.
Material in Ellen G. White that is similar to her alleged source.
Words that are either an exact, or similar, match of the source, but are also an exact, or similar, match to Biblical material.
Material that is represented in either Rea's book or Dr. Veltman's study by an ellipsis.
Material dropped from the beginning or end of the paragraph of the alleged source in Rea's book.
Material clipped from the beginning or end of a sentence in Rea's book, without giving the reader any indication of such. (Either a capital letter or a period appears where it should not, hiding the fact that material is missing.)
Material that was mis-capitalized or mis-abbreviated in Rea.
Typical author's caveat: all errors are, of course, mine. If you find any errors please let me know and I'll fix them.
To finish this chapter off I need to get the following books:
Jones, LSFG., page 23 as per Veltman's report
Just below this place, where John was baptizing, God had divided the deep waters of the Jordan in its rapid flow, and had kept them divided till his people had passed over dry-show; there, Jericho had fallen simply by his almighty will; . . .
Jones, page 38
Although the ascetic had not put himself forward as a leader, and good order had been maintained at the Jordan, yet the people were in an inflammable condition, and tumults might arise, in which cases the Roman power would interfere, with vengeance upon the whole nation.
"We Have Found the Messias"
[This chapter is based on John 1:19-51.]
John the Baptist was now preaching and baptizing at Bethabara, beyond Jordan. It was not far from this spot that God had stayed the river in its flow until Israel had passed over.1 A little distance from here the stronghold of Jericho had been overthrown by the armies of heaven.2 The memory of these events was at this time revived, and gave a thrilling interest to the Baptist's message. Would not He who had wrought so wonderfully in ages past again manifest His power for Israel's deliverance? Such was the thought stirring the hearts of the people who daily thronged the banks of the Jordan.
The preaching of John had taken so deep a hold on the nation as to demand the attention of the religious authorities. The danger of insurrection caused every popular gathering to be looked upon with suspicion by the Romans, and whatever pointed toward an uprising of the people excited the fears of the Jewish rulers.3 John had not recognized the authority of the Sanhedrin by seeking their sanction for his work; and
1 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P3 (loose paraphrase). Return to text
2 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P3 (loose paraphrase). Return to text
3 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P3 (loose paraphrase). Return to text
Jones, page 37
This body, synedrion, assembly, consisted of seventy persons, with the addition of the high-priest as president; and were from the following classes of persons: 1. Officiating high-priest; 2. Ex-high-priests, and heads of the twenty-four classes of high-priests, called, by way of honor, chief-priests; 3. Such as the elders, i.e., princes of the tribes, heads of family associations; as were elected to this place, or put there by a nomination from the ruling executive authority; and 4. Appointments in a similar way from the scribes and learned men. "It was required of these men that they should be religious, and learned in the arts and language; that they should have some skill in physic, arithmetic, astronomy and astrology; also to know what belonged to magic, sorcery and idolatry so as to know how to judge them. They were to be without maim or blemish of body; men of years but not extremely old; and to be fathers of families, that they might be acquainted with tenderness and compassion. . . . Their place of assembling was in a room by the courts of the Temple, and was so arranged that a portion of it projected into the priest's court, in order that it might partake of the sanctity of the place; and part was outside of it, so that the members could sit in the council, which no one could do in the court of the priests, except a king." . . . The Sanhedrin felt now, that it had become of the highest consequence to settle the important questions concerning John, which were agitating the public mind. . . . A wonderful prophet, too, this seemed to be, and the excitement was the greater from the lapse of centuries since a prophet had appeared. His annunciation of the kingdom of heaven as at hand was thrilling to every expectant heart: he was introducing a great revolution by initiating the crowds flocking to him, or asked of the rulers.
Jones, LSFG, page 38
A wonderful prophet, too, this seemed to be, and the excitement was the greater from the lapse of centuries since a prophet had appeared. His annunciation of the kingdom of heaven as at hand was thrilling to every expectant heart: he was introducing a great revolution by initiating the crowds flocking to him, into a new religion; and this without authority given, or asked of the rulers.
John Fleetwood, Life of Our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Page 78
Prompted by curiosity, they dispatched a deputation of Priests and Levites to the Baptist, to demand of him, who this wondrous person was; whether he was the Messiah, or Elias, or that prophet who was to rise from the dead, and precede the Messiah, the powerful prince so earnestly expected by the whole nation of Israel.
he had reproved rulers and people, Pharisees and Sadducees alike. Yet the people followed him eagerly. The interest in his work seemed to be continually increasing. Though he had not deferred to them, the Sanhedrin accounted that, as a public teacher, he was under their jurisdiction.
This body was made up of members chosen from the priesthood, and from the chief rulers and teachers of the nation.4 The high priest was usually the president.5 All its members were to be men advanced in years, though not aged; men of learning, not only versed in Jewish religion and history, but in general knowledge.6 They were to be without physical blemish, and must be married men, and fathers, as being more likely than others to be humane and considerate.7 Their place of meeting was an apartment connected with the temple at Jerusalem.8 In the days of Jewish independence the Sanhedrin was the supreme court of the nation, possessing secular as well as ecclesiastical authority. Though now subordinated by the Roman governors, it still exercised a strong influence in civil as well as religious matters.
The Sanhedrin could not well defer an investigation of John's work.9 There were some who recalled the revelation made to Zacharias in the temple, and the father's prophecy, that had pointed to his child as the Messiah's herald. In the tumults and changes of thirty years, these things had in a great measure been lost sight of. They were now called to mind by the excitement concerning the ministry of John.10
It was long since Israel had had a prophet, long since such a reformation as was now in progress had been witnessed.11 The demand for confession of sin seemed new and startling. Many among the leaders would not go to hear John's appeals and denunciations, lest they should be led to disclose the secrets of their own lives. Yet his preaching was a direct announcement of the Messiah. It was well known that the seventy weeks of Daniel's prophecy, covering the Messiah's advent, were nearly ended; and all were eager to share in that era of national glory which was then expected. Such was the popular enthusiasm that the Sanhedrin would soon be forced either to sanction or to reject John's work. Already their power over the people was waning. It was becoming a serious question how to maintain their position. In the hope of arriving at some conclusion, they dispatched to the Jordan a deputation of priests and Levites to confer with the new teacher.12
A multitude were gathered, listening to his words, when the delegates approached. With an air of authority designed to impress the people
4 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P2 (simple paraphrase). Return to text
5 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P1 (strict paraphrase). Return to text
6 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P1 (strict paraphrase). Return to text
7 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P1 (strict paraphrase). Return to text
8 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P2 (simple paraphrase). To get the word "temple" Veltman had to take note of the source of Jones's quote. Return to text
9 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P2 (simple paraphrase). Return to text
10 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P2 (simple paraphrase). Return to text
11 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P2 (simple paraphrase). Return to text
12 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P2 (simple paraphrase). In Veltman's study "dispatched" in Fleetwood is spelled as "despatched"; my copy was published in New York by Gay Brothers sometime in the 1880's. Return to text
Jones, 42; as per Dr. Veltman's study
The crowds gave way. Probably, in those haughty looks of the Pharisees they could read their own condemnation for being captivated by one not officially recognized, and not a Rabbi; their old reverence for priest and Levite, and additionally for Pharisees, conservators of the unwritten law with its mysterious,undefined power, crept through their hearts again, as they saw these men approach,--perhaps there to overwhelm all the Baptist's claims, and to hurl on his proselytes objurations or even excommunications for having submitted to the new rite. The deputation came in a manner to make impression of their authority, and to procure full and ready answers to their questions; bearing the phylacteries upon their brows and arms, and the wide fringes to their robes, as became Pharisees and men of rank.
skipping over 3 pages to page 45
He answered, not their question, but to what he knew was in every person's mind.
and to command the deference of the prophet the haughty rabbis came.13 With a movement of respect, almost of fear, the crowd opened to let them pass.14 The great men, in their rich robes, in the pride of rank and power, stood before the prophet of the wilderness.15
"Who art thou?" they demanded.
Knowing what was in their thoughts, John answered, "I am not the Christ."
"What then? Art thou Elias?"
"I am not."
"Art thou that prophet?"
"Who art thou? that we may give an answer to them that sent us. What sayest thou of thyself?"
"I am the voice of one crying in the wilderness, Make straight the way of the Lord, as said the prophet Esaias."
The scripture to which John referred is that beautiful prophecy of Isaiah: "Comfort ye, comfort ye My people, saith your God. Speak
13 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P2 (simple paraphrase). Return to text
14 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P2 (simple paraphrase). Return to text
15 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P2 (simple paraphrase). Return to text
Jones, page 45; as per Dr. Veltman's study
. . . (the reply having allusion to a custom prevailing in those eastern countries, when a monarch was about to make a journey; at which times men were sent before to remove obstructions and to make level the roads).
Page 135ye comfortably to Jerusalem, and cry unto her, that her appointed time is accomplished, that her iniquity is pardoned. . . . The voice of him that crieth in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make straight in the desert a highway for our God. Every valley shall be exalted, and every mountain and hill shall be made low: and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough places plain: and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together." Isa. 40:1-5, margin.
Anciently, when a king journeyed through the less frequented parts of his dominion, a company of men was sent ahead of the royal chariot to level the steep places and to fill up the hollows, that the king might travel in safety and without hindrance.16 This custom is employed by the prophet to illustrate the work of the gospel. "Every valley shall be exalted, and every mountain and hill shall be made low." When the Spirit of God, with its marvelous awakening power, touches the soul, it abases human pride. Worldly pleasure and position and power are seen to be worthless. "Imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God" are cast down; every thought is brought into captivity "to the obedience of Christ." 2 Cor. 10:5. Then humility and self-sacrificing love, so little valued among men, are exalted as alone of worth. This is the work of the gospel, of which John's message was a part.
The rabbis continued their questioning: "Why baptizest thou then, if thou be not that Christ, nor Elias, neither that prophet?" The words "that prophet" had reference to Moses. The Jews had been inclined to the belief that Moses would be raised from the dead, and taken to heaven. They did not know that he had already been raised. When the Baptist began his ministry, many thought that he might be the prophet Moses risen from the dead, for he seemed to have a thorough knowledge of the prophecies and of the history of Israel.
It was believed also that before the Messiah's advent, Elijah would personally appear. This expectation John met in his denial; but his words had a deeper meaning. Jesus afterward said, referring to John, "If ye are willing to receive it, this is Elijah, which is to come." Matt. 11:14, R. V. John came in the spirit and power of Elijah, to do such a work as Elijah did. If the Jews had received him, it would have been accomplished for them. But they did not receive his message. To them he was not Elijah. He could not fulfill for them the mission he came to accomplish.
16 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P2 (simple paraphrase). Return to text
William Hanna, The Life of Christ. Page 101
Having got so little to satisfy them as to who the Baptist was, it does not seem that the deputies from Jerusalem troubled themselves to make any inquiries as to who this other and greater than John was. Nor was it otherwise with the multitude. Though the words of the Baptist, so publicly spoken, were such as might well awaken curiosity, the day passed, and Jesus remained unknown, assuming, saying, doing nothing by which he could be recognized. That John needed to point him out in order to recognition confirms our belief, derived in the first instance directly from the narrative itself, that at the baptism none but John and Jesus heard the voice from heaven, or saw the descending dove. Had the bystanders seen and heard these, among the disciples of John there would have been some ready at once to recognize Jesus on his return from the desert. But it is not so. Jesus remains hidden, and will not with his own hand lift the veil--will not bear witness of himself--leaves it to another to do so.
Jones, page 96; as per Dr. Veltman's study
And the Baptist's face again took the glow of inspiration.
Jones, page 46; as per Dr. Veltman's study
Among them!! And all interest in the officials and in John himself must have been lost, as men started and turned inquiring glances among the crowd, making scrutiny for him about whom the astounding announcement had been made. No one could doubt that John meant by this The Christ, the great Messiah that had been promised to the world. That was their answer, and such the intelligence that the emissaries were to carry back to Jerusalem, and to the Sanhedrin.
Many of those gathered at the Jordan had been present at the baptism of Jesus; but the sign then given had been manifest to but few among them.17 During the preceding months of the Baptist's ministry, many had refused to heed the call to repentance. Thus they had hardened their hearts and darkened their understanding. When Heaven bore testimony to Jesus at His baptism, they perceived it not. Eyes that had never been turned in faith to Him that is invisible beheld not the revelation of the glory of God; ears that had never listened to His voice heard not the words of witness. So it is now. Often the presence of Christ and the ministering angels is manifest in the assemblies of the people, and yet there are many who know it not. They discern nothing unusual. But to some the Saviour's presence is revealed. Peace and joy animate their hearts. They are comforted, encouraged, and blessed.
The deputies from Jerusalem had demanded of John, "Why baptizest thou?" [John 1:25] and they were awaiting his answer.18 Suddenly, as his glance swept over the throng, his eye kindled, his face was lighted up, his whole being was stirred with deep emotion.19 With outstretched hands he cried, "I baptize in water: in the midst of you standeth One whom ye know not, even He that cometh after me, the latchet of whose shoe I am not worthy to unloose." John 1:27, R. V., margin.
The message was distinct and unequivocal, to be carried back to the Sanhedrin.20 The words of John could apply to no other than the long-promised One.21 The Messiah was among them!22 In amazement priests and rulers gazed about them, hoping to discover Him of whom John had spoken.23 But He was not distinguishable among the throng.
When at the baptism of Jesus, John pointed to Him as the Lamb of God, a new light was shed upon the Messiah's work. The prophet's mind was directed to the words of Isaiah, "He is brought as a lamb to the slaughter." Isa. 53:7. During the weeks that followed, John with new interest studied the prophecies and the teaching of the sacrificial service. He did not distinguish clearly the two phases of Christ's work,--as a suffering sacrifice and a conquering king,--but he saw that His
17 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as I2 (partial independence). Return to text
18 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as I2 (partial independence). Return to text
19 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as I2 (partial independence). Return to text
20 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P2 (simple paraphrase). Return to text
21 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P2 (simple paraphrase). Return to text
22 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P2 (simple paraphrase). Return to text
23 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P2 (simple paraphrase). Return to text
Hanna, page 100; as per Dr. Veltman's study
From forty days in the desert, from the long fast, from the triple assault, from the great victory won, from the companionship of the ministering angels, Jesus returns to the banks of the Jordan, and mingles, unnoticed and unknown, among the disciples of the Baptist.
Hanna, page 101
But he must not continue thus unknown--that were to frustrate the very end of all John's ministry. The next day, therefore, as John sees Jesus coming to him, while he is some way off, he points to him, and says: "Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world! This is he of whom I said, After me cometh a man which is preferred before me; for he was before me. And I knew him not: but that he should be manifest to Israel, therefore am I come baptizing with water. ... I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and it abode upon him. And I knew him not but he that sent me to baptize with water, the same said unto me, Upon whom thou shalt see the Spirit descending, and remaining on him, the same is he which baptizeth with the Holy Ghost. And I saw, and bare record that this is the Son of God."A
Ingraham's The Prince of the The House of David. page 81
He stopped, and turned upon them a look so pale, and marred with sadness and anguish, that they both stood still and gazed on Him with amazement at such a change.
Ingraham's The Prince of the The House of David, skipping down to page 92
"He turned his pale countenance full upon me, and extended toward me his emaciated hands, while he smiled faintly, and blessed me and said:
skipping down 21 linesWorn to a skeleton by long abstinence, weak through suffering, He looked but a shadow of himself.
Jones, page 46; as per Dr. Veltman's study
He came with no pomp,but quietly among them: no earthly parade of power, no attendance. . . . but alone, in simplicity of dress and simplicity of manner. [skipping over one sentence] But the multitudes might have noticed the wonderful dignity and majesty on that brow; the quiet composure of manner, where conscious omnipotence calmly rested; the winningness of features, where unbounded love drew the lines,and fully impressed itself; and when he spake, the modulations of his voice, where gentleness and benevolence ruled, although at times that voice could take the impressive tones of command.
Jones, page 95; as per Dr. Veltman's study
For he to whom John pointed was a simple personage, in ordinary costume: one like themselves, except that grandeur of expression in face, and that dignity combined with simplicity and unassumingness of manner, which always belong to true greatness even in men.
Jones, page 96; as per Dr. Veltman's study
He knew all this, and so he came, not only as man, but as man in humility and in commonness among men: but yet, with the consciousness which he carried within him, what an impressiveness of internal power and grandeur there was to be recognized, on observation, as he appeared there among the astounded crowds about John; astounded by the seeming contradictions, such lowliness yet such greatness claimed for him by the Baptist and through John by heaven itself.
coming had a deeper significance than priests or people had discerned. When he beheld Jesus among the throng on His return from the desert, he confidently looked for Him to give the people some sign of His true character. Almost impatiently he waited to hear the Saviour declare His mission; but no word was spoken, no sign given. Jesus did not respond to the Baptist's announcement of Him, but mingled with the disciples of John, giving no outward evidence of His special work, and taking no measures to bring Himself to notice.24
The next day John sees Jesus coming.25 With the light of the glory of God resting upon him, the prophet stretches out his hands, declaring, "Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world! This is He of whom I said, After me cometh a man which is become before me. . . . And I knew Him not; but that He should be made manifest to Israel, for this cause came I baptizing in water. . . . I have beheld the Spirit descending as a dove out of heaven; and it abode upon Him. And I knew Him not: but He that sent me to baptize in water, He said unto me, Upon whomsoever thou shalt see the Spirit descending, and abiding upon Him, the same is He that baptizeth with the Holy Spirit. And I have seen, and have borne witness that this is the Son of God." John 1:29-34, R. V., margin.
Was this the Christ? With awe and wonder the people looked upon the One just declared to be the Son of God. They had been deeply moved by the words of John. He had spoken to them in the name of God. They had listened to him day after day as he reproved their sins, and daily the conviction that he was sent of Heaven had strengthened. But who was this One greater than John the Baptist? In His dress and bearing there was nothing that betokened rank.26 He was apparently a simple personage, clad like themselves in the humble garments of the poor.27
There were in the throng some who at Christ's baptism had beheld the divine glory, and had heard the voice of God. But since that time the Saviour's appearance had greatly changed.28 At His baptism they had seen His countenance transfigured in the light of heaven; now, pale, worn, and emaciated, He had been recognized only by the prophet John.29
But as the people looked upon Him, they saw a face where divine compassion was blended with conscious power.30 Every glance of the eye, every feature of the countenance, was marked with humility, and expressive of unutterable love.30 He seemed to be surrounded by an
24 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P2 (simple paraphrase). Return to text
25 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as B1 (Source Bible). Return to text
26 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as I2 (partial independence). Return to text
27 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P2 (simple paraphrase). Return to text
28 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as I2 (partial independence). Return to text
29 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as I2 (partial independence). Return to text
30 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P3 (loose paraphrase). Return to text
31 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P3 (loose paraphrase). Return to text
Jones, page 95; as per Dr. Veltman's study
But was this the Christ? For he to whom John pointed was a simple personage, in ordinary costume: one like themselves, except that grandeur of expression in face, and that dignity combined with simplicity and unassumingness of manner, which always belong to true greatness even in men. Here they produced a Presence which was indeed felt.
Jones, page 96; as per Dr. Veltman's study
Had Christ come in pomp and majesty, with the retinues of the great men of earth, there is many a heart at present doubting or repellant that would gladly open to receive him. [skipping over one sentence] He was to be the Teacher and the Example as well as the Redeemer, and where, if such earthly pomp and circumstance had been around him, where could ever have been the force of such a sermon as that on the Mount, or of his parables, or of his injunctions respecting humility in soul and action, or indeed of all his great teachings felt now to be the life of the world? where that blessedness of fellowship recognized in him by the lowly in life? how could any of this have been is he had come amid exaltations and had so dwelt on the earth? [skipping over one sentence; given above] They were amazed and confounded; they reasoned, doubted; yielded willingly to doubts, for they clung to the old expectation of coming Jewish earthly grandeur, unwilling to let it go. On the following day, while two of John's disciples were standing near by, Jesus came in sight, and the Baptist's face again took the glow of inspiration, as he cried: "Behold the Lamb of God!" The two disciples, how they were thrilled by the words!
William Hanna, The Life of Christ. Pages 104-10
The next day after he had given his first testimony to Christ's lamblike and sacrificial character and office--a testimony apparently so little heeded, attended at least with no outward and visible result--John is standing with two of these disciples by his side. He will repeat to them the testimony of yesterday; they had heard it already, but he will try whether it will not have another and more powerful effect when given not promiscuously to a general audience, but specifically to these two. Looking upon Jesus as he walked, he directed their attention to him by simply saying once again, "Behold the LAMB OF GOD!"--leaving it to their memory to supply all about him in the course of the two preceding days he had declared. Not now without effect. Neither of these two men may know as yet in what sense he is the Lamb of God, nor how by him their sin is to be taken away; but both have felt their need of some one willing and able to guide their agitated hearts to a secure haven of rest, and they hope to find in him thus pointed out the one they need. They follow him. John restrains them not; it is as he would wish. Willingly, gladly he sees them part from him to follow this new Master. He knows that they are putting themselves under a better, higher guidance than any which he can give. But who are these two men? One of them is Andrew, better known to us by his brotherhood to Simon. The other reveals himself by the very manner in which he draws the veil over his name. He would not name himself, and by that very modesty which he displays he stands revealed. It is no other than that disciple whom Jesus loved; no other than the writer of this Gospel, upon whose memory those days of his first acquaintance with Jesus had fixed themselves in the exact succession of their incidents so indelibly, that though he writes his narrative at least forty years after the death of Christ, he writes not only as an eye-
witness, but as one who can tell day after day what happened; and no doubt the day was memorable to him, and the very hour of that day, on which he left the Baptist's side to join himself to Jesus.
John and Andrews follow Jesus. We wonder which of the two it was that made the first movement towards him. Let us believe it to have been John, that we may cherish the thought that he was the first to follow as he was the last to leave.
John and Andrews follow Jesus. We wonder which of the two it was that made the first movement towards him. Let us believe it to have been John, that we may cherish the thought that he was the first to follow as he was the last to leave.He was one at least of the first two men who became followers of the Lamb; and that because of their having heard him described as the Lamb of God. When this first incident in his own connection with Jesus is considered, need we wonder that this epithet, "the Lamb," became so favorite a one with John; that it is his writings, and in them alone of all the writings of the New Testament, that it is to be found, occurring nearly thirty times in the book of Apocalypse.
Farrar, The Life of Christ. page 122
One of those two youths who thus came earliest to Christ was Andrew. The other suppressed his own name because he was the narrator, the beloved disciple, the Evangelist St. John. No wonder that the smallest details, down even to the very hour of the day, were treasured in his memory, never to be forgotten, even in extreme old age.
Hanna, page 105
The two disciples follow Jesus silently, respectfully, admiringly--anxious to address him, yet unwilling to obtrude. He relieves them from their embarrassment. The instinct of that love which is already drawing them to him tells him that he is being followed for the first time by human footsteps, answering to warm-beating, anxious human hearts. He turns and says to them, "What seek ye?"  A vague and general question, which left it open to them to give any answer that they are pleased, to connect their movement with him or not. But their true hearts speak out.  It is not any short and hurried converse by the way that will satisfy their ardent longings.  They would have hours with him alone in the seclusion of his home. "Rabbi"--they say to him, the first time doubtless that Jesus was ever so addressed--"where dwellest thou? He saith to them, Come and see; and they came and saw where he dwelt, and abode with him that day, for it was about the tenth hour." If, in his gospel, John numbers the hours of the day according to the Jewish method of computation, then it must have been late in the afternoon, at four o'clock, having but two hours of that day to run, that Christ's invitation was given and accepted. We incline to believe, however, that John follows not the Jewish, but the Roman method of counting; and if so, then it was in the forenoon, at ten o'clock, that the two disciples accompanied our Lord. And we are rather induced to believe so, as it gives room for the other incident, the bringing of Simon to Jesus, to happen during the same day; which from the specific and journal-like character of this part of John's narrative, we can scarcely help conceiving that he did.
atmosphere of spiritual influence. While His manners were gentle and unassuming, He impressed men with a sense of power that was hidden, yet could not be wholly concealed.31 Was this the One for whom Israel had so long waited?32
Jesus came in poverty and humiliation, that He might be our example as well as our Redeemer.33 If He had appeared with kingly pomp, how could He have taught humility? how could He have presented such cutting truths as in the Sermon on the Mount?34 Where would have been the hope of the lowly in life had Jesus come to dwell as a king among men?35
The words which the priests and rabbis so much desired to hear, that Jesus would now restore the kingdom to Israel, had not been spoken. For such a king they had been waiting and watching; such a king they were ready to receive. But one who sought to establish in their hearts a kingdom of righteousness and peace, they would not accept.
On the following day, while two disciples were standing near, John again saw Jesus among the people.38 Again the face of the prophet was lighted up with glory from the Unseen, as he cried, "Behold the Lamb of God!"39 [John 1:36] The words thrilled the hearts of the disciples.40 They did not fully understand them.41 What meant the name that John had given Him,--"the Lamb of God"?42 John himself had not explained it.43
Leaving John, they went to seek Jesus. One of the two was Andrew, the brother of Simon; the other was John the evangelist.44 These were Christ's first disciples. Moved by an irresistible impulse, they followed Jesus,--anxious to speak with Him, yet awed and silent, lost in the overwhelming significance of the thought, "Is this the Messiah?"45
Jesus knew that the disciples were following Him.46 They were the first fruits of His ministry, and there was joy in the heart of the divine Teacher as these souls responded to His grace. Yet turning, He asked only, "What seek ye?" He would leave them free to turn back or to speak of their desire.47
Of one purpose only were they conscious. One presence filled their thought. They exclaimed, "Rabbi, . . . where dwellest Thou?" In a brief interview by the wayside they could not receive that for which they longed.48 They desired to be alone with Jesus, to sit at His feet, and hear His words.49
31 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P3 (loose paraphrase--see Jones on the previous page for some of the alleged source material). Return to text
32 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P3 (loose paraphrase). Return to text
33 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P2 (simple paraphrase). Return to text
34 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P3 (loose paraphrase). Return to text
35 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P3 (loose paraphrase). Return to text
36 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P3 (loose paraphrase). Return to text
37 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P3 (loose paraphrase). Return to text
38 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P1 (strict paraphrase). Return to text
39 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as V2 (verbatim). The Biblical quote comes from John 1:36; so, without those words the amount of similarity would drop greatly--maybe, to a P3? Return to text
40 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as V2 (verbatim). Return to text
41 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P3 (loose paraphrase). Return to text
42 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P3 (loose paraphrase--see Hanna, page 104, sentence 53; as noted above the Biblical quote comes from John 1:29 & 36). Return to text
43 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P3 (loose paraphrase). Return to text
44 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P1 (strict paraphrase--are we really supposed to believe that this one sentence was "copied" from two different authors? Or, are we supposed to pick one? If so, then on what basis? Or, could it be that this is an indication that some thoughts about the subject were quite common during that era?). Return to text
45 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as I2 (partial independence). Return to text
46 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P3 (loose paraphrase). Return to text
47 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P2 (simple paraphrase--see Hanna, page 105, sentence 74). Return to text
48 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P1 (loose paraphrase--see Hanna, page 105, sentence 76). Return to text
49 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P2 (simple paraphrase--see Hanna, page 105, sentence 77). Return to text
Farrar, page 123
 How was it that these youths of Galilee, how was it that a John so fervid yet contemplative, a Peter so impetuous in his affections, yet so timid in his resolves, were thus brought at once—brought, as it were, by a single look, by a single word—to the Saviour's feet? How came they thus, by one flash of insight or of inspiration, to recognise, in the carpenter of Nazareth, the Messiah of prophecy, the Son of God, the Saviour of the world?
Hanna, page 106
only have been some house which the hospitality of strangers had opened for a few day's residence to one whom they knew not, and over all the intercourse that took place beneath its roof the veil is drawn. It is the earliest instance of this of that studied reserve as to all the minute details of Christ's daily life, and conversation upon which we may have afterwards to offer some remarks. John has not yet learned to lay his head on that Master's bosom, but already he is sitting at his feet. And there for all day long, and on into the quiet watches of the night, would he sit drinking in our Lord's first opening of his great message of mercy from the Father. Andrew has something of the restless, active spirit of his brother in him, and so no sooner has he himself attained a sure conviction that this is indeed the Christ whom he has found, than he hurries out to seek his own brother Simon and bring him to Jesus.  The Lord looks upon Simon and sees all he is and all that he is yet to be.  His great confession, his three denials, his bitter repentance, his restoration, the great services rendered, the death like that of his Master he is to die, all are present to the thoughts of Jesus as he looks. "Thou art Simon," he says at once to him, as if he had known him from his youth--"Simon, the son of Jona." This word Jona, in Hebrew, means a dove, and it has been thought, fancifully perhaps, that it was with a sidelong reference to the place of the dove's usual resort shelter that Jesus said: "Thou art Simon, the son of the dove which seeks shelter in the rock; thou shalt be called Cephas, shalt be the rock for the dove to shelter in." On an after occasion Jesus explained more fully why it was that this new name of Peter, the Rock, was bestowed. Here we have nothing but the simple fact before us, that it was at the first meeting of the two, and before any converse whatever took place between them, that the change of name was announced; with what effect on Peter we are left to guess--his very silence, a silence rather strange to him, the only thing to tell us how deep was the impression made by his first interview with Christ.
Jones,page 99; as per Dr. Veltman's study
There was among the throngs at the Jordan a man, Nathanael by name, belonging to Cana in Galilee,a town about eight miles north of Nazareth.
"He saith unto them, Come and see. They came and saw where He dwelt, and abode with Him that day."
If John and Andrew had possessed the unbelieving spirit of the priests and rulers, they would not have been found as learners at the feet of Jesus. They would have come to Him as critics, to judge His words. Many thus close the door to the most precious opportunities. But not so did these first disciples. They had responded to the Holy Spirit's call in the preaching of John the Baptist. Now they recognized the voice of the heavenly Teacher. To them the words of Jesus were full of freshness and truth and beauty. A divine illumination was shed upon the teaching of the Old Testament Scriptures. The many-sided themes of truth stood out in new light.
It is contrition and faith and love that enable the soul to receive wisdom from heaven. Faith working by love is the key of knowledge, and everyone that loveth "knoweth God." 1 John 4:7.
The disciple John was a man of earnest and deep affection, ardent, yet contemplative.50 He had begun to discern the glory of Christ,--not the worldly pomp and power for which he had been taught to hope, but "the glory as of the Only-begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth." John 1:14. He was absorbed in contemplation of the wondrous theme.51
Andrew sought to impart the joy that filled his heart. Going in search of his brother Simon, he cried, "We have found the Messias." Simon waited for no second bidding. He also had heard the preaching of John the Baptist, and he hastened to the Saviour. The eye of Christ rested upon him, reading his character and his life history.52 His impulsive nature, his loving, sympathetic heart, his ambition and self-confidence, the history of his fall, his repentance, his labors, and his martyr death,--the Saviour read it all, and He said, "Thou art Simon the son of Jona: thou shalt be called Cephas, which is by interpretation, A stone."53
"The day following Jesus would go forth into Galilee, and findeth Philip, and saith unto him, Follow Me." Philip obeyed the command, and straightway he also became a worker for Christ.
Philip called Nathanael. The latter had been among the throng when the Baptist pointed to Jesus as the Lamb of God.54 As Nathanael looked upon Jesus, he was disappointed. Could this man, who bore the marks of toil and poverty, be the Messiah? Yet Nathanael could not decide to reject Jesus, for the message of John had brought conviction to his heart.
50 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P3 (loose paraphrase--see Farrar, 123, sentence 6). Return to text
51 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P3 (loose paraphrase--see Hanna, page 106, sentence 87). Return to text
52 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P2 (simple paraphrase--see Hanna, page 106, sentence 90). Since there is no verbal similarity should this be rated as I2 "partial independence"? Return to text
53 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P2 (simple paraphrase--see Hanna, page 106, sentence 91). Return to text
54 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P2 (simple paraphrase). Return to text
Hanna, page 107
On the banks of the Jordan, or afterwards from one or other of his Galilean countrymen who had already joined themselves to Christ, he had learned the particulars of his earlier earthly history. Any difficulty that he might himself have had in recognizing the Messiahship of one so born and educated was soon got over, the wonder at last enhancing the faith. Finding Nathanael, Philip said to him: "We have found him of whom Moses in the law and the prophets did write, Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph." It was a very natural reply for one who lived so near to Nazareth, and knew how insignificant a place it was, to say: "Can there any good thing"--any such good thing--"come out of Nazareth?" "Come and see!" was Philip's answer. It proved the very simplicity and docility of Nathanael's nature, that he did at once go to see. Perhaps, however, his recent exercises had prepared him for the moment. Before Philip called him, he had been under the fig-tree, the chosen place for meditation and prayer with the devout of Israel. There he had been pondering in his heart, wondering when the Hope of Israel was to come, and praying that it might be soon, when a friend comes and tells him that the very one he has been praying for has appeared. With willing spirit he accompanies his friend. Before, however, he gets close to him, Jesus says, "Behold an Israelite indeed, in whom is no guile!" How much of that guileless spirit which we have learned to call by his name is there in Nathanael's answer! Without thinking that he is in fact accepting Christ's description of him as true, and so exposing himself to the charge by the very blindness that he shows to the description of it, he says: "Whence knowest thou me?" Our Lord's reply, "Before that Philip thee, when thou wast under the fig-tree, I saw thee," we may regard as carrying more with it to the conscience and heart of Nathanael than the mere proof that Christ's eye saw that no human eye, placed as he was at the time, could have seen, but that the secrets of all hearts lay open to Him with whom he had now to do. Nathanael comes with doubting mind, but a guileless heart; and so now, without dealing with it intellectually, the doubt is scattered by our Lord's quick glance penetrating into his inner spirit, and an instant and sure faith is at once planted in Nathanael's breast.
Melvill, page 81; as per Dr. Veltman's study
The reply of Philip is every way observable. He entered on no controversy, he attempted no discussion; he felt that the means which had been effectual with himself were most likely to be effectual with Nathanael; ...
At the time when Philip called him, Nathanael had withdrawn to a quiet grove to meditate upon the announcement of John and the prophecies concerning the Messiah.55 He prayed that if the one announced by John was the deliverer, it might be made known to him, and the Holy Spirit rested upon him with assurance that God had visited His people and raised up a horn of salvation for them. Philip knew that his friend was searching the prophecies, and while Nathanael was praying under a fig tree, Philip discovered his retreat. They had often prayed together in this secluded spot hidden by the foliage.
The message, "We have found Him, of whom Moses in the law, and the prophets, did write," seemed to Nathanael a direct answer to his prayer. But Philip had yet a trembling faith. He added doubtfully, "Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph." Again prejudice arose in Nathanael's heart. He exclaimed, "Can there any good thing come out of Nazareth?"
Philip entered into no controversy.56 He said, "Come and see. Jesus saw Nathanael coming to Him, and saith of him, Behold an Israelite indeed, in whom is no guile!" In surprise Nathanael exclaimed, "Whence knowest Thou me? Jesus answered and said unto him, Before that Philip called thee, when thou wast under the fig tree, I saw thee."
It was enough. The divine Spirit that had borne witness to Nathanael in his solitary prayer under the fig tree now spoke to him in the words of Jesus. Though in doubt, and yielding somewhat to prejudice, Nathanael had come to Christ with an honest desire for truth, and now his desire was met. His faith went beyond that of the one who had brought him to Jesus. He answered and said, "Rabbi, Thou art the Son of God; Thou art the King of Israel."
If Nathanael had trusted to the rabbis for guidance, he would never have found Jesus. It was by seeing and judging for himself that he
55 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P3 (loose paraphrase--see Hanna, page 107, sentences 107-8). Return to text
56 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as V2 (verbatim). Return to text
 These five men were the first disciples of Jesus, and in the narrative of their becoming so we have the history of the infancy of the church of the living God, that great community of the saints, that growing and goodly company, swelling out to a multitude that no man can number, out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation. . . . It tells us of the variety of agencies employed in bringing the first of his disciples to Christ. . . . Whatever these means and methods may be, in order to be effectual they must resolve themselves into direct individual address. . . .  By John speaking to two, Jesus to one, Andrew to one, Philip to one. It is the same species of agency similarly employed which God has always most richly blessed; the direct, earnest, loving appeal of one man to his acquaintance, relative or friend. How many there are among us who have engaged for years either in supporting by our liberality, or aiding by our actual service one or other of those societies whose object is to spread Christianity, but who seldom if ever have endeavored by direct and personal address, to influence one human soul for its spiritual and eternal good!
became a disciple. So in the case of many today whom prejudice withholds from good. How different would be the result if they would "come and see"!
While they trust to the guidance of human authority, none will come to a saving knowledge of the truth. Like Nathanael, we need to study God's word for ourselves, and pray for the enlightenment of the Holy Spirit. He who saw Nathanael under the fig tree will see us in the secret place of prayer. Angels from the world of light are near to those who in humility seek for divine guidance.
With the calling of John and Andrew and Simon, of Philip and Nathanael, began the foundation of the Christian church.57 John directed two of his disciples to Christ.58 Then one of these, Andrew, found his brother, and called him to the Saviour.59 Philip was then called, and he went in search of Nathanael.60 These examples should teach us the importance of personal effort, of making direct appeals to our kindred, friends, and neighbors.61 There are those who for a lifetime have professed to be acquainted with Christ, yet who have never made a personal effort to bring even one soul to the Saviour.62 They leave all the work for the minister. He may be well qualified for his calling, but he cannot do that which God has left for the members of the church.
There are many who need the ministration of loving Christian hearts. Many have gone down to ruin who might have been saved if their neighbors, common men and women, had put forth personal effort for them. Many are waiting to be personally addressed.63 In the very family, the neighborhood, the town, where we live, there is work for us to do as missionaries for Christ. If we are Christians, this work will be our delight. No sooner is one converted than there is born within him a desire to make known to others what a precious friend he has found in Jesus. The saving and sanctifying truth cannot be shut up in his heart.
All who are consecrated to God will be channels of light. God makes them His agents to communicate to others the riches of His grace. His promise is, "I will make them and the places round about My hill a blessing; and I will cause the shower to come down in his season; there shall be showers of blessing." Ezek. 34:26.
Philip said to Nathanael, "Come and see." He did not ask him to accept another's testimony, but to behold Christ for himself. Now that Jesus has ascended to heaven, His disciples are His representatives among men, and one of the most effective ways of winning souls to Him is in
57 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P3 (loose paraphrase--see Hanna, page 109, sentence 128). Return to text
58 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P2 (simple paraphrase). I found the phrase "of his disciples to Christ." Return to text
59 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P2 (simple paraphrase--a name makes it a paraphrase?!?). Return to text
60 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P2 (simple paraphrase--a name makes it a paraphrase?!?). Return to text
61 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P2 (simple paraphrase). Return to text
62 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P2 (simple paraphrase). Return to text
63 In Dr. Veltman's study this sentence and the previous are both rated as I2 (partial independence). Return to text
called, and wondered at their calling thee; "Thou art the Son of God, thou art the King of Israel."' There was something so fresh, so fervent, so full-hearted in the words, they fell so pleasantly on the ear of Jesus, that a bright vision rose before his eye of the richer things that were yet in store for all that believed on him. First, he says to Nathanael individually, "Because I said unto thee, I saw thee under he fig-tree, believest thou? thous shalt see greater things than these;" and then looking on the others, while still addressing himself to him, he adds, "Verily, verily I say unto you, hereafter, or rather from this time forward, ye shall see heaven open, and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of man. You have heard, that a few weeks ago, On the banks of the river, the heavens opened for a moment above my head, and the Spirit was seen coming down like a dove upon me. That was but a sign. Believe what that sign was meant to confirm; believe in me as the Lamb of God, the Saviour of the world, the baptizer with the Holy Ghost, and your eye of faith shall be quickened, and you shall see those heavens standing continually open above my head--opened by me for you; and the angels of God--all beings and things that carry on the blessed ministry of reconciliation between heaven and earth, between the souls of the believers below and the heavenly Father above--going up and bringing blessings innumerable down, ascending and descending upon the Son of man. Son of God--my Father called me so at my baptism, the devil tempted me as such in the desert, the Baptist gave me that name at Bethabara, and thou, Nathanael, hast bestowed it on me now once again; but the name that I now like best, and shall oftenest call myself, is that of the Son of man; and yet I am both, and in being both, truly and eternally fulfil the dream of Bethel. It was but a dream that your father Jacob saw that ladder set up on earth, whose top reached to heaven, up and down which the angels were ever moving. It shall be in no dream of the night, but in the clearest vision of the day--in the hours when the things of the unseen world shall stand most truly and vividly revealed--you shall see in me that ladder of all gracious communication between earth and heaven, my humanity fixing firmly the one end of the ladder on earth, in my divinity the other end of that ladder lost amid the splendors of the throne."
exemplifying His character in our daily life. Our influence upon others depends not so much upon what we say as upon what we are. Men may combat and defy our logic, they may resist our appeals; but a life of disinterested love is an argument they cannot gainsay. A consistent life, characterized by the meekness of Christ, is a power in the world.
The teaching of Christ was the expression of an inwrought conviction and experience, and those who learn of Him become teachers after the divine order. The word of God, spoken by one who is himself sanctified through it, has a life-giving power that makes it attractive to the hearers, and convicts them that it is a living reality. When one has received the truth in the love of it, he will make this manifest in the persuasion of his manner and the tones of his voice. He makes known that which he himself has heard, seen, and handled of the word of life, that others may have fellowship with him through the knowledge of Christ. His testimony, from lips touched with a live coal from off the altar, is truth to the receptive heart, and works sanctification upon the character.
And he who seeks to give light to others will himself be blessed. "There shall be showers of blessing." "He that watereth shall be watered also himself." Prov. 11:25. God could have reached His object in saving sinners without our aid; but in order for us to develop a character like Christ's, we must share in His work. In order to enter into His joy,--the joy of seeing souls redeemed by His sacrifice,--we must participate in His labors for their redemption.
Nathanael's first expression of his faith, so full and earnest and sincere, fell like music on the ears of Jesus.64 And He "answered and said unto him, Because I said unto thee, I saw thee under the fig tree, believest thou? thou shalt see greater things than these." The Saviour looked forward with joy to His work in preaching good tidings to the meek, binding up the brokenhearted, and proclaiming liberty to the captives of Satan. At thought of the precious blessings He had brought to men, Jesus added, "Verily, verily, I say unto you, Hereafter ye shall see heaven open, and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of man."
Here Christ virtually says, On the bank of the Jordan the heavens were opened, and the Spirit descended like a dove upon Me.65 That scene was but a token that I am the Son of God.66 If you believe on Me as such, your faith shall be quickened.67 You shall see that the heavens are opened, and are never to be closed.68 I have opened them to you.69 The
64 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P2 (simple paraphrase). Return to text
65 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P1 (loose paraphrase). Return to text
66 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as I2 (partial independence). Return to text
67 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as V2 (verbatim). Back to text
68 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P1 (loose paraphrase). Return to text
69 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as V2 (verbatim). Back to text
Melvill, page 286; as per Dr. Veltman's study
And what then more accurate than a delineation which should represent the Mediator under the image of a ladder, based on earth, but reaching to heaven, and thus affording a medium of communication between God the man?
Page 143angels of God are ascending, bearing the prayers of the needy and distressed to the Father above, and descending, bringing blessing and hope, courage, help, and life, to the children of men.70
The angels of God are ever passing from earth to heaven, and from heaven to earth. The miracles of Christ for the afflicted and suffering were wrought by the power of God through the ministration of the angels. And it is through Christ, by the ministration of His heavenly messengers, that every blessing comes from God to us. In taking upon Himself humanity, our Saviour unites His interests with those of the fallen sons and daughters of Adam, while through His divinity He grasps the throne of God.71 And thus Christ is the medium of communication of men with God, and of God with men.72
70 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P2 (simple paraphrase--see Hanna above). Return to text
71 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P2 (simple paraphrase--see Hanna above). Return to text
72 In Dr. Veltman's study this is rated as P1 (loose paraphrase). Return to text
had passed over, page 132
The high priest, page 133
They were to be without, page 133
Their place of, page 133
a deputation of priests and Levites to, page 133
at the baptism, page 136
The deputies from Jerusalem, page 136
to the Sanhedrin., page 136
on His return from the desert, page 137; I found this phrase
the disciples of, page 137
The next day, page 137
John sees Jesus coming, page 137
a simple personage, page 137
Was this the, page 138
example as well as, page 138
on the Mount, page 138
the lowly in life, page 138
On the following day, while two, page 138
disciples were standing near, page 138
as he cried, page 138
by the wayside, page 138
among the throng, page 139
Philip called him,, page 140
it might be, page 140; I found this phrase
of his disciples to Christ., page 141; I found this phrase
on the ears of Jesus, page 142
of the Jordan, page 142
like a dove upon Me., page 142
was but a, page 142
faith shall be quickened, page 142
You shall see, page 142
The angels of God, page 142-3
medium of communication, page 143
Again the face of the prophet was lighted up with glory from the Unseen, as he cried, "Behold the Lamb of God!"
The words thrilled the hearts of the disciples.
Philip entered into no controversy.
If you believe on Me as such, your faith shall be quickened.
I have opened them to you.
Veltman says that out of 250 sentences in this chapter he could only find 5 sentences that were verbatim matches, there were no strict verbatim, and of the rest 58 were paraphrases (23.2%), another 40 were from the Bible (16%), and 147 were independant (58.8%). The total of the independent and Bible texts amounts to 66% of the total.
Rea and others have claimed that EGW copied some 80-90% of her work. Ninety percent of 250 is 225. But, Veltman says that well over half of the sentences are independent, another 16% were from the Bible, and 23.2% were paraphrases. So, where did Rea get the 90% figure from? Thin air?
In his study on the literary relationship between Hanna and Ellen G. White Cottrell looked at this chapter a found that the correlation (presumably at the word level) to be 4.2%. He noted tha the last paragraph on page 142 has a correlation of 40%--this is stll a great deal less than the 80-90% that is claimed.
1) In this chapter Veltman found 5 sentences in Desire of Ages that he called "verbatim" matches. As we can readily see this is a quite "loose" definition. When I was learning about paraphrasing and plagiarism in school most of what Veltman calls "verbatim" we'd call paraphrasing.
2) Ellen White obviously shortened and improved what she might have been able to remember reading (without remembering that she had read it--this is called cyrptomnesia). This is obviously not a case of her slavishly copying someone else's work.
3) In the conclusion of his study, (page 244) on this chapter Dr. Veltman "points to the need for latitudinal as well as longitudinal studies" of Ellen G. White's writings. To date, this has not been done so no one say with absolute surety that Ellen G. White copied other people's writings (either verbatim or through paraphrasing). What we can say so far is that the evidence does not support a claim that Ellen G. White copied 80-90% of her writings from other people and it is doubtful that the amount of verbal similarity that has been found so far rises to the level of plagiarism.
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