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Ellen G. White’s Use Of The Term “Race War”, and Related Insights

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    Appendix D—Relevant Race Principles Evident In Ellen White’s Writings

    1. Ellen White unequivocally condemned the system of slavery and its related evils and depicted this as one of the arenas where the great controversy was being fought.EGWUTRW 39.2

    She made a fervent and passionate denunciation of the entire system and gave it its sinful, temporal dimension, but also gave it its spiritual and eschatological dimension:EGWUTRW 39.3

    One finite human being compelling another to do his will, claiming to be mind and judgment for another, and this sentiment that has Satan for its originator, has presented a history, terrible, horrible in oppression, tortures and bloodshed.

    Man is God’s property by creation and redemption, but man has been demanding the right to compel the consciences of men. Prejudices, passions, satanic attributes, have revealed themselves in men as they have exercised their powers against their fellow men.

    All is written, all, every injustice, every harm, every fraudulent action, every pang of anguish caused in physical suffering, is written in the books of heaven as done to Jesus Christ, who has purchased man at an infinite price, even his own life. All who treat His property with cruelty, are charged with doing it all to Jesus Christ in the person of His heritage, who are His by all the claims of creation and redemption. And while we are seeking to help the very ones who need help, we are registered as doing the same to Christ.

    A correct knowledge of the Scripture would make men fear and tremble for their future, for every work will be brought into review before God, and they will receive their punishment according as their works have been. God will give to the faithful and true, patience under trial. 18Race Relations, pp. 109, 110.

    2. The conditions of the blacks in the South was a consistent concern to Ellen White, and one that she spoke of often. Further, she compared their condition as being similar to that of the Hebrew slaves when they left Egypt.EGWUTRW 40.1

    Those who study the history of the Israelites should also consider the history of the slaves in America, who have suffered, who have been educated in crime, degraded, and oppressed, and left in ignorance to perish. Their physical freedom was obtained at a great loss of life, and Christians generally should have looked with compassion upon the colored race, for which God had a care. They should have done a work for them that would have uplifted them. They should have worked through the wisdom of God to educate and train them. We have been very neglectful of our colored brethren, and are not yet prepared for the coming of our Lord. The cries of these neglected people have come up before God. Who has entered into the work since their deliverance from bondage, to teach them the knowledge of God? The condition of the colored people is no more helpless than was the condition of the Hebrew slaves. 19The Southern Work, 42, 43. 3. While being mindful of the negative effects of the system of slavery, Ellen White was also mindful of the potential of the black race.EGWUTRW 40.2

    She spoke of potential:EGWUTRW 41.1

    He sees precious jewels that will shine out from among the colored race. Let the work be taken up determinedly, and let both the young and those of mature age be educated in essential branches. 20The Southern Work, 63.

    She spoke of possibilities:EGWUTRW 41.2

    The colored people may be compared to a mine that is to be worked, in which is valuable ore of most precious material.... One tenth of the advantages that their more favored brethren have received and failed to improve, would cause them to become mediums of light through which the brightness of the righteousness of Christ might shine forth. 21The Southern Work, 65.

    4. One of Ellen White’s burdens to the church was that the gospel might be spread and work might be done among the blacks.EGWUTRW 41.3

    In a series of ten articles written for the Review and Herald in the mid-1890’s, Ellen White eloquently presented the needs and appealed for workers and support in the Southern field (see The Southern Work, 19-65). These messages reveal God’s concern and divine will for the Adventist Church in relation to the black work. Ellen White spoke these with conviction, unflinchingly and with directness.EGWUTRW 41.4

    5. Ellen White repeatedly put the race issue in a Biblical religious setting, by analogically comparing it with various Bible subjects. It was more than merely a civil national issue; rather, for Christians and Seventh-day Adventists, it was a spiritual issue, one with eternal implications.EGWUTRW 41.5

    The following are some of the comparisons: (All page references are to Southern Work, unless otherwise noted.)EGWUTRW 41.6

    a. Deliverance message of liberty pp. 9-14
    b. Christ’s mission to humanity p. 9
    c. Christ and the Scribes and Pharisees p. 10
    d. Parable of Lazarus p. 12
    e. Gentiles and the Jews p. 20
    f. Parable of the Marriage Supper p. 21
    g. Moses before Pharoah p. 23
    h. Israel’s experience as a nation pp. 23-24
    i. Parable of the priest, Levite and Samaritan pp. 19, 26
    j. Exodus movement pp. 41-45
    k. Wilderness experience p. 41
    1. Walls of Jericho p. 43
    m. Love concept in the Ten Commandments p. 54
    n. Jonah’s attitude and mission p. 79
    o. Christ and His condescension p. 85
    p. Spies sent to the Promised Land p. 88
    q. Serpent and doves p. 91
    r. Vineyard p. 96
    s. Wall of partition Ministry of Healing
    pp. 25, 27
    t. Power of the Sun of Righteousness Church Race Relations,
    p. 121
    u. The Light of the World Testimonies, vol. 9,
    pp. 199-203

    6. The inherent equality of the races was clearly understood and expounded by Ellen White, in spite of many of the racist views that were being circulated. Adventism had the opportunity of being a reconciler.EGWUTRW 42.1

    Christ came to this earth with a message of mercy and forgiveness. He laid the foundation for a religion by which Jew and Gentile, black and white, free and bond, are linked together in one common brotherhood, recognized as equal in the sight of God. The Saviour has a boundless love for every human being. In each one He sees capacity for improvement. With divine energy and hope He greets those for whom He has given His life. In His strength they can live a life rich in good works, filled with the power of the Spirit. 22Ellen G. White, Testimonies for the Church 7:225(California: 1948).EGWUTRW 42.2

    The religion of the Bible recognizes no caste or color. It ignores rank, wealth, worldly honor. God estimated men as men. With Him, character decides their worth. And we are to recognize the Spirit of Christ in whomsoever it is revealed. 23Testimonies for the Church 9:223.EGWUTRW 42.3

    Thus Christ sought to teach the disciples the truth that in God’s kingdom there are no territorial lines, no caste, no aristocracy; that they must go to all nations, bearing to them the message of a Saviour’s love. 24Ellen G. White, The Acts of the Apostles, 20(California: 1911).—(See also The Southern Work, 29, 31, 35, 55, 57.)EGWUTRW 42.4

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