God's Work Saved
Elder F.C. Gilbert, an Adventist, knew E.G.White personally.
His book was originally published in 1922 in regard to
Ellen White's predictions that have come to pass.
IT is interesting in studying the ways of God to see how the Lord wonderfully works in behalf of His church, and the simple means He often uses in accomplishing His purposes.
When the king of Syria planned to destroy God's people, the Lord interposed in their behalf and revealed to the prophet Elisha the plans which were being devised in the king's bedchamber for Israel's destruction. It seemed so singular to the king that as secret as he endeavored to keep his plans, Israel should know all about them, and the generals of the armies of God's people were thus able to gain much advantage. He felt sure that there must be a spy in the camp of Syria, and told his counselors so at one of the secret meetings. Some one of his cabinet who had known of the work of the prophet Elisha told the king of Syria:
"None, my Lord, O king:but Elisha, the prophet that is in Israel, telleth the king of Israel the words that thou speakest in thy bedchamber." II Kings 6:12. God was revealing to the prophet what was transpiring in the secret council of the king's meeting, and he made known to the Israelitish king these plans in order to avert the destruction of God's people.
Of Mrs. White's movements during the summer of 1890, we read:
"At the home of Brother Hicks, where she was entertained, she was visited by an old lady who was violently opposed in her Christian life by her husband. This interview lasted an hour. After this, weak, weary, and perplexed, she thought to retire to her room and pray. Climbing the stairs, she knelt by the bed, and before the first word of petition had been offered, she felt that the room was filled with the fragrance of roses. Looking up to see whence the fragrance came, she saw the room flooded with a soft, silvery light. Instantly her pain and weariness disappeared. The perplexity and discouragement of mind vanished, and hope and comfort and peace filled her heart.
"Then losing all consciousness regarding her surroundings, she was shown in vision many things relating to the progress of the cause in different parts of the world, and the conditions which were helping or hindering the work. "Among the many views presented to her, were several showing the conditions existing in Battle Creek. In a very full and striking manner, these were laid out before her.
"Tuesday forenoon, November 4, was the time set for The departure from
Salamanca. In the morning Elders A. T. Robinson and W. C. White called
to see what Mrs. White had decided to do.
Then she told them of her experience of the evening before, and of her peace and joy through the night. She said that during the night she had no inclination to sleep, for her heart was so filled with joy and gladness. Many times she had repeated the words of Jacob; 'Surely the Lord is in this place, and I knew it not.' 'This is none other but the house of God, and this is the gate of heaven.' Gen. 28:16, 17.
"She was fully decided to attend the meetings according to appointment. Then she proposed to tell the brethren what had been shown her regarding the work in Battle Creek, but her mind immediately turned to other matters, and she did not relate the vision." "Life Sketches, edition 1915, pages 309-311.
"For some reason her mind seemed to turn to other subjects, and after leaving I remarked to Elder White that his mother had evidently forgotten to tell us what had been presented to her the previous night. Elder White said that he had also noticed the fact."
"The General Conference for 1891 was held in Battle Creek, March 5-25.
Sunday forenoon, March 15, the committee of twenty-one appointed at the
preceding General Conference to consider the consolidation of the
publishing interests, presented its report.
The committee spoke favorably of the objects to be gained by consolidation, but advised that the conference move cautiously. They then proposed that the General Conference Association be reorganized, with a view to its eventually securing control of all the publishing work of the denomination.
"In harmony with the advice of this committee, the General Conference Association, intended at first as an agency for the holding of church property, was reorganized with a board of twenty-one members, and was given control of many lines of work, of which publishing interests stood first.""Life Sketches, edition 1915, page 313.
In speaking of this same General Conference, Elder A. T. Robinson says:
"Early in the meeting an effort had been made by the officers of the National Religious Liberty Association and the representatives of the American Sentinel, to come to an agreement regarding policies and plans. To this end a joint council was arranged to be held Saturday night, March 7, after the regular meeting in the Tabernacle.
"At this council meeting, men with strong convictions and fixed determination expressed their views and feelings very freely, and at last the representatives of the National Religious Liberty Association voted that unless the policy of the American Sentinel was changed, the association would establish another periodical to be its organ. This joint meeting continued till after one o'clock in the morning.""Life Sketches, edition 1915, pages 313, 314.
Of this same meeting, Elder Robinson writes:
"Sabbath, March 7, was a day of deep solemnity. In the forenoon Elder Haskell spoke on the world-wide proclamation of the gospel..
"In the afternoon Mrs. White spoke on the importance of preaching the word and the danger of covering up, and keeping in the background the distinctive features of our faith, under the impression that prejudice will thereby be avoided. If there is committed to us a special message, as we believe, that message must go, without reference to the customs or prejudices of the world, not governed by a policy of fear or favor."
"Two or three times during the discourse she began to tell the story of her experience at Salamanca, and each time she hesitated, and leaving the story untold proceeded with other lines of thought. This discourse made a profound impression on the large congregation.
"Late in the afternoon a ministers' meeting was held in the east vestry of the Tabernacle. Mrs. White was present and pleaded for a deeper consecration. At the close of this special meeting she was asked by Elder O. A. Olsen if she would attend the ministers' meeting Sunday morning. She replied that she had done her part, and would leave the burden with him. Then it was planned that Elders Olsen and Prescott should lead the meeting.
"Sunday morning about 5:20, Brethren A. T. Robinson, W. C. White, and Ellery Robinson were passing Mrs. White's residence on their way to the early meeting. They saw a light in her room, and her son ran up to inquire about her health.
"He found her busily engaged in writing. She then told him that an angel of God had wakened her about three o'clock, and had bidden her go to the ministers' meeting and relate some things shown her at Salamanca. She said that she arose quickly, and had been writing for two hours.
"At the ministers' meeting an earnest season of prayer had just closed when Mrs. White entered with a package of manuscripts in her hand. With evident surprise Elder Olsen said:We are glad to see you, Sister White. Have you a message for us this morning?'
"'Indeed I have,' was her reply. She then said that it had not been her plan to attend the morning meeting, but she had been awakened very early, and instructed to prepare to relate to the brethren some things shown her at Salamanca.
"She told briefly the story of her experience at the Salamanca meeting, and said that in the vision given her there the Lord had opened before her the condition and perils of the work in many places. Warnings were given her which she was commanded to present to men in responsible positions. Especially in Battle Creek great perils surrounded the work, but men knew it not, because impenitence blinded their eyes.
"With regard to one occasion, her guide said, 'Follow me,' and she was ushered into a council meeting where men were advocating their views and plans with great zeal and earnestness, but not according to knowledge. One brother stood before the council with a paper in his hand, and criticized the character of its contents. The paper was the American Sentinel. Pointing to certain articles, he said, 'This must come out, and that must be changed. If the Sentinel did not contain such articles as these, we could use it.' The articles pointed out as objectionable were upon the Sabbath and the second coming of Christ.
"With clearness Mrs. White spoke of the views and the attitude of the chief speakers in this council meeting. She referred to the harsh spirit manifested by some, and to the wrong positions taken by others. She closed her remarks with a most earnest appeal that all should hold forth the truth in its perfection, and that the watchman should give the trumpet a certain sound. A solemn conviction rested upon the assembly, and all felt that they had been listening to a message from heaven.
"Elder Olsen was bewildered, and knew not what to say. He had not heard of the special committee council which had been continued into the early hours of that very morning, and which had closed less than two hours before the angel bade Mrs. White tell the vision given her four months before, in which this very meeting was minutely described. But he had not long to wait for an explanation. Soon the men who had been in the council of the night before arose and testified regarding their committee meeting. "One said:I was in the meeting last night, and I am sorry to say I was on the wrong side. And I take this early opportunity to place myself on the right side.'
"The president of the National Religious Liberty Association bore a clear testimony. He said that the night before, a number of brethren had met in his room at the Review Office, and there discussed the very matters just referred to by Mrs. White. Their deliberations had continued till after one o'clock in the morning. He said he would not undertake to describe the meeting. That was unnecessary, because the description as given by Mrs. White was correct, and more exact that he could give it. He freely acknowledged that the position he had held was not right, and that he could now see his error.
"Another brother stated that he had been in the meeting, and that the
description given by Mrs. White was true and correct in every particular. He
was profoundly thankful that light had been given,
because the differences of opinion had created a very serious situation. He believed that all were honest in their convictions, and sincerely desired to do what was right, yet their views were at variance, and they could not agree. Others who had been present at the late committee council over the Sentinel, bore testimony that the meeting had been correctly described by Mrs. White." "Life Sketches, edition 1915, pages 314-318.
"Other testimonies were borne, expressing thankfulness that light had been given on this question which was attended with so much perplexity. They also expressed their gratitude that the message had been given in such a way that all could see not only the wisdom of God in the message, but also the goodness of God in sending it at such a time that none could doubt its being a message from Heaven.
"This experience confirmed the faith of those who believed, and deeply impressed those who had felt that their own experienced judgment about business matters was safer to follow than the plans for the distribution of responsibility and the establishment of many centers of influence that had been called for by their brethren in the field and by the Testimonies.""Life Sketches, edition 1915, page 318.
"Years before I had been called to pass through a similar, experience, and
the Lord then revealed to me many things of vital importance, and gave me
warnings that must be delivered to those in peril. On the night of November
3rd, these warnings were brought to my mind, and I was commanded to
present them before those men in responsible offices of trust, and to fail not
nor be discouraged, There were laid out before me some things I could not
but the assurance was given me that the Lord would not allow His people to be enshrouded in the fogs of worldly skepticism and infidelity, bound up in bundles with the world; but if they would only hear and follow His voice, rendering obedience to His commandments, He would lead them above the mists of skepticism and unbelief, and place their feet upon the Rock, where they might breathe the atmosphere of security and triumph.
"While engaged in earnest prayer, I was lost to everything around me; the room was filled with light, and I was bearing a message to the General Conference. I was moved by the Spirit of God to make a most earnest appeal; for I was impressed that great danger was before us at the heart of the work. I had been, and still was, bowed down with distress of mind and body, burdened with the thought that I must bear a message to our people at Battle Creek, to warn them against a line of action that would separate God from the publishing work."
"He who wept over impenitent Israel,..,.. looked upon the heart of the work at Battle Creek. Great peril was about the people, but some knew it not. Unbelief and impenitence blinded their eyes, and they trusted to human wisdom in the guidance of the most important interests of the cause of God relating to the publishing work. In the weakness of human judgment, men were gathering into their finite hands the lines of control, while God's will, God's way and counsel, were not sought as indispensable. Men of stubborn, iron-like will, both in and out of the office, were confederating together, determined to drive certain measures through in accordance with their own judgment.
"I said to them, 'You can not do this. The control of these large interests can not be vested wholly in those who make it manifest that they have little experience in the things of God, and have not spiritual discernment. The people of God throughout our ranks must not, because of mismanagement on the part of erring men, have their confidence shaken in the important interests at the great heart of the work. If you lay your hands upon the publishing work, this great instrumentality of God, to place your mold and superscription upon it, you will find that it will be dangerous to your own souls, and disastrous to the work of God. It will be as great a sin in the sight of God as was the sin of Uzzah when he put forth his hand to steady the ark.'"
"No confederacy should be formed with unbelievers, neither should you call together a certain chosen number who think as you do, and who will say Amen to all that you propose, while others are excluded, who you think will not be in harmony. I was shown that there was great danger of doing this. " "Life Sketches, edition 1915, pages 319-321.