Ellen G. White and Her Critics


One Critic’s Final Argument

In the light of the foregoing facts let us look at what a critic presents as an unanswerable argument against Mrs. White’s inspiration, in terms of the change in wording regarding Babylon. EGWC 332.2

“Which was inspired, the revelation of 1888 or the revelation of 1911? Some of her defenders claim that this [change in wording] makes no change in the meaning. If you were acquitted by a court jury of a crime for which you had been charged, and the jury should bring in a verdict, ‘The prisoner is not guilty of the crime charged against him,’ would it make any difference to you if the clerk inserted the word ‘alone’ and thereby made it read: ‘The prisoner is not guilty alone of the crime charged against him’?” EGWC 332.3

But Mrs. White, sitting as a jury of one in 1888, did not acquit the “Romish Church” of the “crime” for which it “had been charged.” On the contrary she renders against it, and at great length, a verdict of guilty of all that the Bible declares that Babylon commits. But the case before Mrs. White involves more than one defendant. The revision of the text of her verdict sought only to make clear the relationship of one defendant to the other, in the matter of the timing of their crimes! EGWC 333.1

To the question, “Which was inspired, the revelation of 1888 or the revelation of 1911?” we would return another: Which is inspired, Paul’s letter to the Romans, c. A.D. 60, that speaks of certain persons predestined to salvation; or John’s Revelation, c. A.D. 96, that offers salvation to “whosoever will”? Romans 9:17-23; Revelation 22:17. The answer, of Course, is that they both are, and that there is really no contradiction. Paul is simply stressing one great truth, the sovereignty of God, and John is stressing another, the free will of man. Even so with Mrs. White and the disputed passage before us; there is no real contradiction. EGWC 333.2