Ellen G. White: The Later Elmshaven Years: 1905-1915 (vol. 6)


S. N. Haskell and the 1843 Chart

On August 28, 1908, almost two months after writing to Prescott, she wrote to Elder S. N. Haskell, a stalwart advocate of the old view. Because Ellen White in Early Writings had made reference to “the 1843 chart” in connection with a mention of the daily, Haskell had arranged for the publication of a facsimile copy of the chart and was circulating it. Her testimony to Haskell opened: 6BIO 250.1

I have had cautions given me in regard to the necessity of our keeping a united front. This is a matter of importance to us at this time. As individuals we need to act with the greatest caution. 6BIO 250.2

I wrote to Elder Prescott, telling him that he must be exceedingly careful not to introduce subjects in the Review that would seem to point out flaws in our past experience. I told him that this matter on which he believes a mistake has been made is not a vital question, and that, should it be given prominence now, our enemies would take advantage of it, and make a mountain out of a molehill. 6BIO 250.3

She continued: 6BIO 250.4

To you also I say that this subject should not be agitated at this time. Now, my brother, I feel that at this crisis in our experience that chart which you have had republished should not be circulated. You have made a mistake in this matter. Satan is determinedly at work to bring about issues that will create confusion. There are those who would be delighted to see our ministers at an issue on this question, and they would make much of it.—Letter 250, 1908.

While she was without special light from the Lord on the particular point in question, she did receive light on the matter of the controversy the discussion was causing, and she wrote, “I have been instructed that regarding what might be said on either side of this question, silence at this time is eloquence.” She pointed out that “Satan is watching for an opportunity to create division among our leading ministers.” In this two-page letter she made a second reference to the chart Haskell had printed. Under the chart he had quoted words from Early Writings in regard to the view of the daily held by those who gave the “judgment hour cry” in the early 1840s. She wrote him, “It was a mistake to publish the chart until you could all get together and come to an agreement concerning the matter. You have not acted wisely in bringing to the front a subject that must create discussion, and the bringing out of various opinions.” 6BIO 250.5

Then, significantly, in closing her letter, she declared: 6BIO 251.1

Elder Haskell, I am unable to define clearly the points that are questioned. Let us not agitate a subject that will give the impression that as a people we hold varied opinions, and thus open the way for those to work who wish to leave the impression on minds that we are not led by God. It will also be a source of temptation to those who are not thoroughly converted, and will lead to the making of rash moves.— Ibid. (Italics supplied.)

How different was the situation brought to view here than in 1905 when Ellen White was called upon to meet decisively the views advocated by Elder A. F. Ballenger, which involved the work of Christ in man's behalf in the heavenly sanctuary. On that she had not only the evidence of the confirming miracle-working power of the Spirit of God in the establishment of the doctrine but repeated visions, as well, pointing out the errors in the views of Dr. Kellogg and Elder Ballenger, which would, if accepted, do away with that fundamental truth. 6BIO 251.2