Ellen White’s Prophecies and Testimonies to Individuals
Her Prophecies and Testimonies to Individuals

The Case of Moses Hull
The Case of Stephen Smith
Three Cases in Greenville, Michigan
The Case in California

Much has been written in an attempt to discredit Ellen White and the inspiration with which she wrote. On this website we attempt to show an honest evaluation of facts. This page deals with her perdictions about individual people.

What definite events did Ellen White foretell to occur at definite times and to definite people? Where are these prophecies? At first she did venture to foretell a few things definitely, but they all failed. Once in her early work she did venture to predict the curse of God upon a definite person, Moses Hull. In 1862 he was about to give up his faith in Adventism. Mrs. White wrote him thus: "If you proceed in the way you have started, misery and woe are before you. God's hand will arrest you in a manner that will not suit you. His wrath will not slumber." (Testimonies for the Church, Vol. 1, pp. 430,431).
Mr. Hull lived on many long years to a ripe old age, and nothing of the kind predicted happened.

The Case of Moses Hull

Read the letter in its context in Testimonies for the Church, Vol. 1, pp. 426-431

Nowhere in the letter did Ellen White indicate that Hull would die a speedy death.

She writes:

“He (Moses Hull) was presented to me as standing upon the brink of an awful gulf, ready to leap. If he takes the leap, it will be final; his eternal destiny will be fixed.”

(Hull had “dealt a big blow against spiritualism”, in other words he had helped people overcome Satan’s power. But now Satan was seeking to destroy Hull. Taking his eyes off Christ, the man was thinking he had power over Satan.)

“Brother Hull, you were shown me under the soothing influence of a fascination which will prove fatal unless the spell is broken. You have parleyed with Satan, and reasoned with him, and tarried upon forbidden ground,”

Brother Hull, you have suffered reproach for the truth's sake. You have felt the power of the truth and of an endless life. You have had God's Spirit witness with yours that you were owned and accepted of Him. I saw that if you gird on the armor anew, and stand at your post, resisting the devil and fighting manfully the battles of the Lord, you will be victorious.

Brother Hull, I have been shown that if you would dedicate yourself to God, hold communion with Him, meditate much, watch your failings, mourn and lament before the Lord in the deepest humility on account of them, relying upon Him for strength, you would be in the most profitable business in which you were ever engaged; for you would be drinking at a living fountain, and could then give others to drink from that same fountain which revived and strengthened you. “

Now I ask-- was this a failed prophecy about Bro. Hull? Or was it a warning which was totally conditional as to Moses Hull’s choice?

Let's read what the pioneers said about the case:

(Divine Predications Fulfilled, by F.C.Gilbert, page 202-206)
I met Moses Hull's daughter, who told me that her father for many years had been a Seventh-day Adventist preacher. In the early days of his ministry, he had power with God, and had accomplished somethin in the work of God.

It appears that this Mr. Hull was a force in debates. He had had several debates with spiritualists, and when he relied on God, he was greatly blessed and the truth was manifestly triumphant. The spiritualists, however, saw in him a man of great possibility for their cause, if they could only secure him; and the devil planned and schemed and devised to bring this about.

It appears that as a result of the success he had with these spiritualists, he came to feel that he was a man of some ability, and so became quite self-opinionated. This is evident from the following:

"There are others among us who are in danger. They have an exalted opinion of their own ability, while their influence in many respects has been but little better than that of Elder Hull. Unless they thoroughly reform, the cause would be better off without them." (1T 439)

He was a man of pleasing address, and his audiences felt the charm of his manners. It is written:

"Those who fail to manage wisely in temporal matters, generally lack in spiritual things. They fail to build up the church. They may possess natural talents and be called smart speakers, and yet lack moral worth. They may draw large congregations and raise considerable excitement; but when the fruit is sought for, there is very little, if any, to be found.....This has been the case with Elder Hull.....1T 438

"In places where Elder Hull has given a course of lectures, the people have been pleased with his witticisms and his peculiar style of preaching, yet but few have embraced the truth as the result of his labors." (1T 438)

God saw that this man could be a power in His work; and so out of love and mercy for him, He gave Mrs. White several visions in his behalf. She pointed out these dangers to him, and called upon him to be on his guard, for there was trouble ahead unless he earnestly sought God.

Elder Loughborough, who had labored with this man, says that "In October 1862, Moses Hull held a debate with a Mr. Jamieson, a great spiritualist lecturer, at Paw Paw, Michigan. The community where this debate was held was a spiritualist community. In that debate the spiritualists had him literally surrounded with spiritualist mediums who mesmerized him. This Mr. Jamieson told him so before the end of the first day of the debate; and Mrs. White told him the same thing when she had the vision of his case.

Loughborough writes:

"When the debate was ended, he felt alarmed at his state of mind. He asked Elder White, his wife, Elder M. E. Cornell and myself to have a season of prayer for him, and we engaged in this season at my home. It was during this season of prayer that Sister White had the vision referred to in 'Testimonies for the Church,' Vol. I, pages 426-439."

Mrs. White told Moses Hull at the close of that vision that "he was presented to me as standing upon the brink of an awful gulf, ready to leap."

"It is life or death with you, Brother Hull. Already I saw a cloud of evil angels surrounding you, and you at perfect ease among them. Satan has been telling you a pleasing story about an easier way than to be in constant warfare with conflicting spirits." (1T 427) She also saw the workings of his mind, and gave him this encouragement and assurance:

"God's hand will arrest you in a manner that will not suit you. His wrath will not slumber. But now He invites you. Now, just now, He calls upon you to return to Him without delay, and He will graciously pardon and heal all your backslidings." (1T 439) Elder Loughborough says further:
"For a time after this testimony was given him, he tried to rise above this hypnotic spell which was holding him, and which was so clearly pointed out to him by Mrs. White. So in the spring of 1863 he went with me to labor in the New England States; but it seemed hard for him to get above these entanglements."

Now Mrs. White had told him in that vision:

"While the power of the truth, in all its force, influenced him, he was comparatively safe; but break the force and power of truth upon the mind, and there is no restraint, the natural propensities take the lead, and there is no stopping place..... If he takes the leap, it will be final; his eternal destiny will be fixed.

The work of God is not dependent upon Brother Hull. If he leaves the ranks of those who bear the blood-stained banner of Prince Immanuel, and joins the company who bear the black banner, it will be his own loss, his own eternal destruction." 1T 427

"Brother Hull, you were shown to me under the soothing influence of a fascination which will prove fatal unless the spell is broken."
"If you do not arouse and recover yourself from the snare of the devil, you must perish. The brethren and sisters would save you, but I saw they could not. You have something to do; you have a desperate effort to make, or you are lost."1T 428

"If you go down, you will not go alone; for Satan will employ you as his agent to lead souls to death."– "Testimonies for the Church, “ 1T 430.

Elder Loughborough remarks on the last part of the experience of Elder Hull with the Sabbath-keepers:

"So in the fall (1863) he left us and went into spiritualism. Some people and even ministers said, 'Oh, he will get sick of spiritualism when he gets among them and finds what it is.'

"I said, 'No,' and said it on the strength of what is in the testimony to him, as found on page 427 of Vol. I; 'He was presented to me as standing upon the brink of an awful gulf, ready to leap. If he takes the leap, it will be final. His eternal destiny will be fixed. He is doing work and making decisions for eternity.'"

When he left the Adventists, he went to the spiritualists. He preached for them for a number of years, and at times he advocated some strange ideas. He lectured extensively in different parts of the country, and a friend of mine told me he heard him many years ago deliver a lecture before a large audience in the city of New Haven, Connecticut, ridiculing the sufferings of Christ and the crucifixion in a manner that was most shocking. As the prediction said, "If you go down, you will not go alone, for Satan will employ you as his agent to lead souls to death." Everything that Mrs. White prophesied of him came to pass to the very letter. God had shown her the man's life, and unless he accepted the warning there was no hope.
[Divine Predications Fulfilled, by F.C.Gilbert, page 202-206]

May we not learn some valuable things from this sad history? Moses Hull died unrepentant, from heart failure on the streets of San Jose, California. A man may appear to be honest and right, but as surely as God through His servant the prophet has spoken concerning his career, the wise course for him to pursue is to follow the light which has been given to him from heaven. What she saith, surely cometh to pass.


Stephen Smith became involved in erroneous views in 1857

(1BIO 490-492, by Arthur White) At some point in the 1850's, after one of his lapses, Ellen White wrote him a Testimony in which she depicted what his life would be if he persisted in the course he was following. When he received the letter he feared that it was a testimony of reproof , so he took it home from the post office and tucked it deep in a trunk, still unopened and unread

For nearly thirty years Stephen Smith was out of the church, opposing his former brethren, mean and cutting in his criticism. Mrs. Smith remained faithful, and the REVIEW AND HERALD came weekly to their home then one day Smith picked it up and read an article from Ellen White. He continued to read her weekly articles and found they spoke to his heart, and he began to soften. In 1885 E. W. Farnsworth, son of William Farnsworth, of Washington, New Hampshire, was holding revival meetings in the little Washington church. Smith had known him as a boy, and he walked twelve miles to attend the Sabbath meeting. He heard Farnsworth preach on the rise and development of the remnant church . The sermon over, Smith rose to his feet and asked for the privilege of speaking. The audience, who knew him well, expected a perfect blast of criticism and meanness. "I don’t want you to be afraid of me, brethren," he said. "I have not come to criticize you. I have quit that kind of business." Then he reviewed the past….

Smith intended to stay over in Washington for the meeting on the next Sabbath, but on Wednesday he thought of the letter from Ellen White in his trunk at home. Feeling he could not wait to read it, he started out early Thursday morning and trudged the twelve miles home and soon had the unopened envelope in his hands. He tore it open and read its contents. Back again in Washington on Sabbath he heard Farnsworth preach on the Spirit of Prophecy in the remnant church when the sermon was over he was on his feet again. HERE IS WHAT HE SAID:

"I received a testimony myself twenty-eight years ago. I took it home and locked it up in my trunk, and I never read it till last Thursday." He said he did not believe this testimony. Although he did not know a word there was in it, He was afraid to read it, fearing it would make him mad. But , said he, "I was mad all the time, nearly".

Finally, he said: “Brethren, every word of the testimony for me is true, and I accept it. I have come to that place where I finally believe they (the testimonies) are of God, and if I had heeded the one God sent to me as we;; as the rest, it would have changed the whole course of my life, and I should have been a very different man.

If I had heeded them, they would have saved me a world of trouble. ….I thought that I knew as much as an old woman’s visions, as I used to term it. May God forgive me! To my sorrow, I found the visions were right, and the man who thought he knew it all was all wrong,…….

Greenville Meeting
Testimonies for Mr. Pratt, Brother Barr, and a married couple.

[by J.N.Loughborough, "The Great Second Advent Movement" p. 277-279]

Testimony Delineating Character

On Nov. 24, 1862, two meetings were held at the same hour in the house of William Wilson, of Greenville, Mich., for the purpose of organizing two churches for those who had accepted the Sabbath truth in that vicinity. The meeting for the Greenville church was conducted by Elder White and his wife in one room, while Elder Byington and myself had charge of a meeting in another room for the West Plains church. While we were engaged in the preliminary work in one room, we could hear the voice of Mrs. White as she bore her testimony in the other room. We were meeting with some difficulties in our work, when just at the opportune time Mrs. White opened the door, and said, "Brother Loughborough, I see by looking over this company that I have testimonies for some of the persons present. When you are ready, I will come in and speak." That being just the time we needed help, she came in. Aside from Elder Byington and myself, she knew the names of only three persons in the room. The others were strangers, whom she had never seen, only as they had been presented to her in vision.

Mr. Pratt's Life Described

As she arose to speak, she said: "You will have to excuse me in relating what I have to say, if I describe your persons, as I do not know your names. As I see your countenances, there comes before me what the Lord has been pleased to show me concerning you. That man in the corner with one eye [some one spoke, saying, "His name is Pratt"] makes high professions, and great pretensions to religion, but he has never yet been converted. Do not take him into the church in his present condition, for he is not a Christian. He spends much of his time idling about the shops and stores, arguing the theory of the truth, while his wife at home has to cut the fire-wood, look after the garden, etc. He makes promises in his bargains that he does not fulfill. His neighbors have no confidence in his profession of religion. It would be better for the cause of religion, for him, in his present condition, to say nothing about it."

Brother Barr Made Glad

She continued, saying, "This aged brother [as she pointed to him, some one said, "Brother Barr"] was shown me in direct, contrast with the other man. He is very exemplary in his life, careful to keep all his promises, and provides well for his family. He hardly ventures to speak of the truth to his neighbors, for fear he will mar the work and do harm. He does not see how the Lord can be so merciful as to forgive his sins, and thinks himself unfit even to belong to the church." She then said to him, "Brother Barr, the Lord bade me say to you that you have confessed all the sins you knew of, and that he forgave your sins long ago, if you would only believe it."
The look of sadness on the brother's countenance quickly fled. He looked up with a smile, and said, in his simplicity, "Has he?" "Yes," responded Mrs. White, "and I was told to say to you, 'Come along, and unite with the church; and as you have opportunity, speak a word in favor of the truth; it will have a good effect, as your neighbors have confidence in you.' " He responded, "I will."

Then she said, "If Mr. Pratt could, for a time, take a position similar to that which Brother Barr has been occupying, it would do him good."

Thus was one cause of our difficulty in organizing removed. Before her testimony was borne, we could not get Mr. Barr to consent to unite with the church; while on the other hand, we found about every one was opposed to receiving Mr. Pratt; still no one felt free to tell why he opposed.

A Family Jealousy Healed

She next addressed a man having a sandy complexion, who sat on one side of the room; and then pointed to a thin-featured woman on the extreme opposite side, addressing them as husband and wife. She delineated some things that transpired in their former lives, before either of them had made any profession of the truth. She said these things had been magnified by Satan before the mind of the woman until she was driven to insanity. "I saw," said Mrs. White, "that this woman had been one year in the insane asylum; but since recovering her reason, she has permitted these same jealous feelings to trouble her mind, greatly to the grief of her husband, who has done everything in his power to show his wife that he was true to her, and that she had no reason to hold him off in the manner she does."

In a moment the wife rushed across the room, and on her knees begged her husband to forgive her. The individuals were almost strangers in that part of the country, and their former history was unknown. Those best acquainted with them, however, were aware that an estrangement existed between them, but the cause they knew not.

After Mrs. White had borne her testimony, the work of organizing the church was soon completed. Mr. Barr came heartily into the organization, while Mr. Pratt was left out. The moment the meeting closed, the latter said, with considerable vehemence, "I tell you what, there is no use trying to go with this people and act the hypocrite; you can't do it."

The Case in California

[J.N.Loughborough, "The Great Second Advent Movement" pp. 386-388]

The First Tent-Meeting in San Francisco

In June the same year, (1871) we erected our tent for the first time, in San Francisco, As Elder Bourdeau had returned to the East, another laborer from Michigan was sent to take his place. He arrived on June 17, and at once united with me in labor in the city. After a few weeks' effort in the tent, we continued our meetings to Dec. 1, 1871, in hired halls. As the result of this labor over fifty accepted the message in San Francisco.

Internal Trials in California

Until this date our trials in California had been more from outside opposition, but now arose an unlooked-for test of faith for our people of a different character. An associate laborer persisted in a course of action which I was confident would subject himself and the cause to reproach.

Dangerous Independence

I did not claim that the brother had committed actual sin in his course of action, but I reasoned that our enemies would make capital of what he claimed to be innocent. He took the position that he had a right to "do as he pleased" in the matter, especially when it was admitted there was no sin in what he was doing. Thus things went on until Jan. 23, 1872, when I (Loughborough) went from Sonoma County to San Francisco to see what could be done to check matters there.

By this time our enemies were making use of his course as I had feared, and he was taking the position that it was "none of their business," that he would show them that he had a mind of his own, and could walk the streets as he pleased, and with whom he pleased, without being subject to their remarks. I tried, by private labor, to show him that such a course of action would not answer, and that such an independent spirit would end in evil. He had his friends, who strongly sympathized with him, some of whom began to take a position which would subject him to still greater censure. A large portion of the church saw the evil of his waywardness, and were ready to second the efforts I (Loughborough) was making to save the cause from dishonor.

Investigation Meeting Appointed

Thus matters stood on Sabbath, January 27, when it was decided that there must be an investigation of the case, and some decisive action taken by the church, to save them from the stigma that this defiant spirit was likely to produce. A meeting was appointed, to begin Sunday, January 28, at 9 A.M., for the consideration of the situation, and our duty as a church in reference to the same. To all appearances a division of that church was inevitable. I spent much of that night in prayer to God, that he would work in our behalf.

A Written Confession

On the morning of the 28th, as I started for the meeting, I met the fellow-laborer on the sidewalk, near my boarding place, weeping. Said he, "Brother Loughborough, I am not going to the meeting to-day."

"Not going to the meeting?" said I; "the meeting relates to your case."

"I know that," said he, "but I am all wrong. You are right in the position you have taken in reference to me. Here is a letter of confession I have written to the church; you take it and read it to them. It will be better for you, and better for those who might be inclined to sympathize with me, if I am not there."

"What has occasioned this great change in you since yesterday?" I inquired.

A Wonderful Vision Received

He replied, "I went to the post-office last night, after the Sabbath, and received a letter from Sister White, from Battle Creek, Mich. It is a testimony she has written out for me." Handing it to me, he said, "Read that, and you will see how the Lord sees my case."

He requested me to say to the church that he had received a testimony from Sister White, reproving him for his conduct, and that he accepted it, as it was the truth.

Convincing Nature of the Vision

This was part of a view given to Mrs. White at Bordoville, Vt., Dec. 10, 1871. She began to write the part relating to this brother's case Dec. 27, 1871, but for some reason the completion of the document was delayed until Jan. 18, 1872, at which time it was finished and mailed from Battle Creek. It then required about nine days to get letters overland from Michigan to California.

In vision many things are shown her prophetically. It was so in this instance. At the time of the vision there was but a shadow of what was actually developed when the testimony arrived in San Francisco. It will be seen, from a comparison of dates, that the culmination of the case in San Francisco came after the written testimony left the former place. Our brethren in San Francisco saw at once that no person could have written to Battle Creek and communicated the intelligence to Mrs. White in time for her to write this letter, for the state of things did not then exist. This fact was of great weight with the brethren there, convincing them that there was divine power with that vision. I had not written a line to Elder White or his wife concerning the state of things in San Francisco, and the fellow-laborer declared that he had written nothing; and the brethren said, "If he had written, he would not have told the things that were brought out concerning himself."

How Vision was Written

When we afterward learned, from the other end of the line, concerning the writing out and mailing of the testimony, it was still further evident that the Lord who gave the vision had a care over the time of its being written and forwarded to its destination, so that it would reach there just at the right time.

At a very early hour on the morning of Jan. 18, 1872, Mrs. White was awakened with the above testimony vividly impressed upon her mind. The impression was as distinct to her as though audibly spoken, "Write out immediately that testimony for California, and get it into the very next mail; it is needed." This being repeated the second time, she arose, hastily dressed, and completed the writing. Just before breakfast she handed it to her son Willie, saying, "Take this letter to the post-office, but don't put it into the drop. Hand it to the post-master, and have him be sure to put it into the mail bag that goes out this morning." He afterward said that he thought her instructions a little peculiar, but he asked no questions, and did as he was bidden, and "saw the letter go into the mail bag."

Proof of Divine Guidance

Knowing our situation in San Francisco at that time, you will readily see the importance of getting that letter into that very mail. In those days we had only one overland mail per day. Had the letter come Sunday night, the 28th, instead of Saturday night, the 27th, there would doubtless have been a sad rupture in the church. Had it come several weeks earlier, even just after the vision was given, the church would not so readily have seen its force. Here was a testimony which bore evident marks of the Lord's hand, not only in that it arrived at proper time to effectually correct the existing errors, but, being humbly accepted and acted upon by the brother, it exerted a mighty influence to bring unity and stability into that young church.

Manner of Writing out the Visions

This instance serves also as an illustration of her own statement respecting the manner of writing out what she has seen. Of this she says: "I have been aroused from my sleep with a vivid sense of subjects previously presented to my mind; and I have written, at midnight, letters that have gone across the continent, and arriving at a crisis, have saved a great disaster to the cause."

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