NOTE OF CONFIDENCE
THE SPIRIT OF PROPHECY
BY FORMER GENERAL CONFERENCE LEADERS
1. G. I.
Butler (President from December 29, 1871 to August 10, 1874, and from
October 6, 1880 to October 17, 1888)
firmly believe the visions of Mrs. White are a genuine manifestation of
spiritual gifts. They bear every test the Bible gives to distinguish between
true and spurious manifestations. They speak according to the 'law and the
testimony.' Isa. 8:20 . . .
fruits born by these visions, are good, and hence the tree which bears
them is good. Matt. 7:15-20. They teach truth and purity, and lead to the
love of God, and the study of his word. . . .
light of the third angel's message is spreading as never before. Never
were its prospects of ultimate success as bright as to-day.
what do we owe this union and strength? He answer: To the influence of
these. . . visions more than to anything else but the word of God. They
have always been held in high esteem by the most zealous and humble among
our people. They have exerted a leading influence among us from the start.
They have first called attention to every important move we have made in
publishing work, the health and temperance movement, the College, and the
cause of advanced education, the missionary enterprise, and many other
important points, have owed their efficiency largely to this influence. We
have found in a long, varied, and in some instances, sad experience, the
value of their counsel. When we have heeded them, we have prospered; when
we have slighted them, we have suffered a great loss. Many instances of
this kind could be given from our past history. As a people, we have no
reason to boast of our faithfulness to them.
the contrary, we have shown much of unbelief and indifference to their
teachings. But when we have regarded them most highly, we have enjoyed the
greatest prosperity. It is clear to everyone who has closely noticed the
workings of this cause that in those Conferences where these Testimonies
are most highly regarded, there the greatest degree of prosperity is seen;
and in those where they are least respected, there the work drags heavily.
same is true of individuals. We have never known a person to meet with
much success in preaching this truth, who had little or no faith in the
visions. And those ministers who are must successful in accomplishing real
good, and truly build up the cause, are always those who have strong faith
in them."--Review and Herald, August 14, 1883.
G. H. Watson (President from May 28, 1930 till May 26, 1936)
are living in days, dear friends, when we as a people ought to know the
value of this gift of God to the church. It is utterly impossible for
leaders to move forward safely unless they receive continually the
instruction that God has provided for their guidance.
ought, dear friends, so to acquaint ourselves with the sayings of God,
through Sister White to this people, that we shall know what we ought to
do in times of crisis, when delusions and snares beset the church. We have
never given to this gift the value that God has given it. We have never
fully recognized the place in the church that God would have it occupy.
It is one thing, dear friends, for us to receive these messages and apply
them to individuals all about us; it is quite another thing for us to
recognize their value to the movement itself in these days of peril.
want to tell you, my friends, I have never found it necessary to go outside
the Bible and the "Testimonies for the Church" for direction in
the leadership of this movement. More and more I find in my heart the
longing to understand more clearly what God has said to our hearts by
these messages, and to know what God would have us to do.
the small and limited ways in which we often use these messages, sometimes
merely to point out something somebody near us is doing as a habit of
life, when all the time God would have us recognize this gift as a great
light to guide this people in the way that he has marked out for
them.--Review and Herald, June 18, 1936 (A statement made at the 1936
General Conference session)
J. L. McElhany (President, General Conference, 1936-1950)
writings of the Spirit of Prophecy live today to speak words of counsel
and encouragement to the church. How thankful we should be for this gift.
--God's Special Gift to the Remnant Church, p. 13.
I. H. Evans (General Conference Vice-President)
have never found in any other books that I have read, aside from the Holy
Scriptures, such spiritual help, such inspiration to faith and to the
final triumphs of the gospel, as are found in the writings of Sister
White. In fact, I cannot understand how anyone who will read her writings
carefully can ever backslide from a deep personal experience in
spiritual things.--Ibid, p. 14.
R. R. Figuhr (President, General Conference, 1954-1966)
gift of prophecy has guided, counseled, warned, and inspired. The secret
of our efficient organization and the extension of our work around the
world, as well as our clear position on great fundamental principles, can
all be traced to this divinely inspired counsel. . . . I deeply appreciate
this gift."--Facts and Comments About the Spirit of Prophecy, p. 4.
Ellen White Estate Washington, D.C.