Ellen G. White in Europe 1885-1887


Length of Conference Extended

As she closed her talk and the people began to give their testimonies, many said they could now understand better why they had not advanced more rapidly in their Christian experience. Then some began to urge that the meetings be extended a week. “They said the lessons they were having from Sister White were of great value to them; that they were gaining much knowledge by the Bible studies and the instruction given upon the work of colporteurs.”—Letter 23, 1885. So the council voted to continue another week with the rich spiritual feast and the valuable practical instruction. This final week would be one of trial and testing for some of the ministers present, as we shall see. EGWE 75.5

“How to Meet Temptations” was Ellen White's subject at the Wednesday morning devotional service. “Presumption is a most common temptation,” she pointed out, and those who profess to be Christ's followers too often “plunge without thought into temptations from which it would require a miracle to bring them forth unsullied. Meditation and prayer would have preserved them from these temptations by leading them to shun the critical, dangerous position in which they placed themselves.”—Historical Sketches of the Foreign Missions of the Seventh-day Adventists, 133. EGWE 76.1

But no matter how cautious one is, temptations will come. EGWE 76.2

The tempted Christian has the privilege of linking his strength with the strength of God:“ It is our privilege in our great weakness to take hold of the strength of the Mighty One. If we think to meet and overcome the enemy in our own strength, we shall be disappointed.”—Ibid., 134. EGWE 76.3

It is essential to “make daily advancement in the work of character-building.” But God's servant warned that this would be no easy task: “When we try to separate from us our sinful habits, it may at times seem that we are tearing ourselves all to pieces; but this is the very work that we must do if we would grow up into the full stature of men and women in Christ Jesus.”—Ibid., 134, 135. EGWE 76.4

Finally, temptation can be resisted only by those who exercise faith. “Cling to Christ and His merits,” God's servant urged, and “He will fulfill to us all He has promised.”—Ibid., 135. EGWE 76.5

Decisions of the council were becoming more specific now. It was voted that A. C. Bourdeau should go to Torre Pellice, Italy; and that young Charles Andrews should be sent to Battle Creek to learn the printing business more thoroughly. A request was sent to the General Conference that a successful German laborer be sent to Europe, and not long afterward, L. R. Conradi would come. Nominations were made and accepted for various officers and committees. EGWE 77.1

A number of the foregoing decisions had grown out of a consultation meeting in Ellen White's room earlier in the day. But one crucial item that had come up in that smaller meeting did not reach the conference floor. EGWE 77.2