Ellen G. White and Her Critics


A Strange Situation

A large segment of Protestantism, following the Reformer Calvin, are known as Calvinistic, and thus include in their creeds the dogma of predestination, which teaches, in part, that a portion of humanity were predestined to destruction, doomed of God to damnation before they were born. In other words, the door of mercy would never open for them. Yet we do not recall that any of the critics of Seventh-day Adventism have raised their voices in an outraged cry against all Calvinistic Protestantism, which is, indeed, a substantial segment of Protestantism. In fact, some of them have belonged to Calvinistic churches! We might add that only in our day, after four hundred years, has Calvin’s fearful predestination doctrine begun to be softened. EGWC 200.2

Our fathers believed that all men had opportunity for salvation, and that only by their own willful action did any of them cut short their day of grace. And though our forebears were too pronounced in their original view of probation’s close, they began to modify that view almost in their first pronouncements. A few years was more than sufficient to do for them what four centuries have hardly yet done for Calvinistic Protestantism. EGWC 201.1

There are those who will ever seek to make what capital they can of the first faltering steps of our fathers. All others, we think, will agree with us that the nature and worth of Seventh-day Adventism should be measured by the road map that led its founders onward to an ever widening field of evangelistic activity. EGWC 201.2

In the setting of this historical sketch, we wish now to turn to the charge that Mrs. White believed and taught, as the result of alleged visions, that the door of mercy was shut for all sinners on October 22, 1844. EGWC 201.3