THE TRINITY ISSUE AND THE PIONEERS – THE HOLY SPIRIT

Courtesy of Living Waters Mission School

THE HOLY SPIRIT

“….and, lo, I am with you alway, [even] unto the end of the world. Amen.”

Like the scriptures there is to be no private interpretation of the testimonies. Sister White said, “The testimonies themselves will be the key that will explain the messages given, as scripture is explained by scripture.” “Regarding the testimonies, nothing is ignored; nothing is cast aside; but time and place must be considered.” {E. G. White, Selected Messages Book 1, pp. 42, 57}

 

Therefore one must allow the testimonies to explain themselves as to the meaning intended.  Recall also from the study of what constitutes a person, that the latter consists of a physical form and a spirit.  The two are as ordained by God in the context of man being made in the image of his creator. Hence the person, God, is also composed of a physical form and Spirit. As it is in man. so with God the physical form and the spirit make up the individual  i.e. the two components are found in the ONE individual.

 

PERSON = PHYSICAL FORM + SPIRIT

 

OBJECTION # 1

“We need to realize that the Holy Spirit, who is as much a person as God is a person, is walking through these grounds.–Manuscript 66, 1899. (From a talk to the students at the Avondale School.)”  Evangelism, p. 616

 

The objection as stated is seemingly a triumph for the Trinitarian, however, the one-liner has been extracted from a paragraph which explains itself quite well and in no way leads to the understanding that the Holy Spirit is another individual. Notice also what the editors have done in placing a full stop (period) after the word grounds instead of a comma and completing the quote. It is this sort of editing that is leading people to misinterpret the testimonies. No-one has the right to alter what the Lord has sent and there is clear evidence of so called editing (changing) of Sister White’s writings. She had warned on the subject, of making none effect the testimonies of the Spirit of God.

 

Speaking of Fannie Bolton, her copyist.

“I do not want any person who will feel it her prerogative to change the matter I shall give them into their own supposed beautiful, learned language. I want my own style to appear in my own words.” MR 926 pg. 56.

 

“She could represent me and my work as her originating, that this “beautiful expression” was hers, and that was hers, and make of none effect the testimony of the Spirit of God.” MR 926 pg 55

 

Therefore, to make of none effect the testimonies was in fact the changing of the testimonies according to Ellen White, and not simply a neglecting of them.

 

Here is objection # 1 in its proper setting:

“The Lord says this because He knows it is for our good. He would build a wall around us, to keep us from transgression, so that His blessing and love may be bestowed on us in rich measure. This is the reason we have established a school here. The Lord instructed us that this was the place in which we should locate, and we have had every reason to think that we are in the right place. We have been brought together as a school, and we need to realize that the Holy Spirit, who is as much a person as God is a person, is walking through these grounds, unseen by human eyes; that the Lord God is our Keeper and Helper. He hears every word we utter and knows every thought of the  mind.” E. G. White, Sermons and Talks Volume Two, pp. 136, 137 (Also in Manuscript Releases Vol. 7, p. 299)

 

The subject is “the Lord”, walking unseen by human eyes. Notice she says:

  1. The Lord says this…
  2. HE knows it is for our good.
  3. HE would build a wall around us…
  4. that HIS blessing and love may be bestowed on us…
  5. The Lord instructed us that this was the place… we should locate…
  6. the Lord God is our Keeper and Helper…
  7. He hears every word we utter and knows every thought of the mind.

 

  1. Notice that the testimony commences with “The Lord” and ends with “the Lord God”, a real physical person.
  2. She states in the midst of it: “…we need to realize that the Holy Spirit, who is as much a person as God is a person…”
  3. Question: In what way is the Holy Spirit as much a person as God is a person? Clearly it cannot be referring to God’s physical form as there is nothing physical about a Spirit as we have found thus far. (Luke 24:39). And to be a person as noted previously requires PHYSICAL FORM + SPIRIT.
  4. Therefore she must be referring to the non-physical (spirit) aspect of a very PHYSICAL God and it is this which is as much a person as God is a person. The Spirit is not something permeating nature but rather the very person of God himself sent to be with us. The Holy Spirit is actually the PERSON of God. Who He is.
  5. She then states that the Holy Spirit is walking through these grounds. Well, a non-physical spirit does not possess limbs and therefore cannot be spoken of as walking around, however, the Lord God does possess physical anatomy like man as has been repeatedly pointed out – see the study on what constitutes a person. So who was it that was walking through these grounds unseen? Why it was the Lord God himself, a PHYSICAL being, “unseen by human eyes”. A Spirit of itself does not have a form like man to look at so it would be silly to say “unseen by human eyes” while referring to the Spirit. Who was it that was unseen by human eyes? It was the Lord God himself, a physical being who does have a form and features like that of man who was “unseen by human eyes” , walking through the grounds. This portion of the testimony ends with: “…the Lord God is our Keeper and Helper. He hears every word we utter and knows every thought of the mind.” How? – By his omnipresent Spirit.

 

She is speaking of a physical God walking amongst us, unseen by us. How is this possible? Through the operation of His Spirit. The Spirit is none other than the person of the Lord God. The Spirit is not some ethereal non-entity – it is the very person of a very physical God, the non physical aspect of the Lord, rendering Him omnipresent. The Spirit of God is indeed a mystery.

 

The mighty power that works through all nature and sustains all things is not, as some men of science represent, merely an all-pervading principle, an actuating energy. God is a spirit; yet He is a personal being, for man was made in His image. Testimonies for the Church Volume Eight -PG- 263

 

She is making the point that the Spirit is not “merely an all-pervading principle, an actuating energy” but “is as much a person as God is a person”.  In another place she says this with the same thought in mind:

 

God a Person, Not a Perfume –Through Jesus Christ, God–not a perfume, not something intangible, but a personal God–created man, and endowed him with intelligence and power. Manuscript Releases Volume Three -PG- 326

 

The above testimony is one of those fundamental statements because it is saying, GOD, whoever He is, is not something INTANGIBLE, but a tangible, physical person and not something permeating nature. The Spirit however is something intangible, non-physical and as demonstrated in the study on the GODHEAD, is referring to the non-physical aspect of the individual whether God or man. The Spirit is the person of God come to man, God’s mind, character and personality dwelling in us and working for us. It is plainly stated in the following that the Spirit is “his person, the divinity of his character”. The Spirit is not some other individual dwelling in us as Trinitarians would have us believe.

 

“It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing; the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and  they are life.” Christ is not here referring to his doctrine, but to his person, the divinity of his character.” E. G. White, Review and Herald, April 5, 1906 par. 12

 

It is Christ himself and not some other person who is walking around unseen by human eyes as in the following:

 

“Christ walks unseen through our streets. With messages of mercy He comes to our homes. With all who are seeking to minister in His name, He waits to co-operate. He is in the midst of us, to heal and to bless, if we will receive Him.”  E. G. White, The Ministry of Healing, p. 107

 

The Lord Jesus standing by the side of the canvassers, walking with them, is the chief worker. If we recognize Christ as the One who is with us to prepare the way, the Holy Spirit by our side will make impressions in just the lines needed. Manual for Canvassers -PG- 40

 

Christ walks unseen through our streets. With messages of mercy He comes to our homes. With all who are seeking to minister in His name, He waits to co-operate. He is in the midst of us, to heal and to bless, if we will receive Him.” {E. G. White, The Ministry of Healing, p. 107}

 

“Remember that Jesus is beside you wherever you go, noting your actions and listening to your words. Would you be ashamed to hear his voice speaking to you, and to know that he hears your conversation?” {E. G. White, The Youth’s Instructor, February 4, 1897 par. 3}

 

Who is walking “unseen through our streets”, “standing by the side of the canvassers”? The invisible Jesus, and not some other BEING. But Jesus is in heaven ministering in the most Holy place. How can he be said to be standing by the side of the canvasser and at the same time be in heaven? The statement is correct in that Jesus’ Spirit and not some other being is standing by the side of the canvasser – “…the Holy Spirit by our side…”,  the omnipresent spirit of Christ, the very person of Christ is with us, so that Jesus himself is walking with us, teaching us, reproving us and comforting us. In other words, Christ was to be with the disciples in another way, by His Spirit, invisible to them. Sister White says the disciples could not understand this sort of spiritual manifestation, that Christ, a physical being, should manifest himself and be with the disciples and yet be unseen by the world. Many today have the same problem. They do not understand that the Spirit is the personal presence of Christ himself. They do not understand the meaning of a spiritual manifestation of the very person Jesus.

 

That Christ should manifest Himself to them, and yet be invisible to the world, was a mystery to the disciples. They could not understand the words of Christ in their spiritual sense. They were thinking of the outward, visible manifestation. They could not take in the fact that they could have the presence of Christ with them, and yet He be unseen by the world. They did not understand the meaning of a spiritual manifestation. The Southern Review- 09-13-98

 

OBJECTION # 2

“ There are three living persons of the heavenly trio; in the name of these three great powers–the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit– those who receive Christ by living faith are baptized, and these powers will co-operate with the obedient subjects of heaven in their efforts to live the new life in Christ. . . .  {SpTB07 63.2}”

 

The conclusion many arrive at from a superficial reading is that “three living persons” must mean three separate individuals. We believe the study on what constitutes a person makes it very clear that Sister White was in fact using the word person  when referring to the Spirit in a way contrary to the usual use of the word.  Note the following:

“It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing; the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life.” Christ is not here referring to his doctrine, but to his person, the divinity of his character.” {E. G. White, Review and Herald, April 5, 1906 par. 12}

 

In using the word Spirit, Jesus was in fact referring to himself, to his person, the divinity of his character. The Spirit is life, it is a living entity, it is the very life of Christ which in turn gives us life or makes us alive – it quickeneth. The Spirit is spoken of as a living person because Christ is a living person. The Spirit is not an ethereal non-entity, it is the person of Jesus and therefore described as a living person. Objection # 2, therefore, presents no difficulty for the non-trinitarian. The onus is on the trinitarians to try and make an individual out of an invisible non-physical entity. Nowhere in Holy writ does it present God in His totality as a non-physical being. The Holy Spirit does not fit the bill but how easily is it understood to mean the non-physical aspect of a very physical God and by which this very physical God is omnipresent throughout His entire creation.

 

One of the characteristics of God is OMNIPRESENCE.  The Trinitarian God is composed of three persons, each capable of being omnipresent. In what way is the individual called the Father omnipresent? Similarly in what way is the Son omnipresent? In what way is this third being, the Holy Spirit omnipresent? Each, being God, must be capable of omnipresence in their own right and not reliant on another for this purpose. So how is it that they are all individually omnipresent?

 

“Christ gives them the breath of His own spirit, the life of His own life. The Holy Spirit puts forth its highest energies to work in heart and mind.” {E. G. White, The Desire of Ages, p. 827}

 

What then comprises the heavenly trio?  The heavenly “trio” consists of God the Father, His Son Jesus Christ, and their Holy Spirit which is sent to influence mankind to salvation. It is indeed a mystery but that is how God comes to you and I. The Spirit of Prophecy presents the heavenly trio thus:

 

“They have one God and one Saviour; and one Spirit–the Spirit of Christ–is to bring unity into their ranks.” {E. G. White, Testimonies Volume 9, p. 189}

 

“Christ tells us that the Holy Spirit is the Comforter, and the Comforter is the Holy Ghost, “the Spirit of truth, which the Father shall send in My name.” … This refers to the omnipresence of the Spirit of Christ, called the Comforter.” {E.G. White, Manuscript Releases Vol.14, p. 179}

 

“Cumbered with humanity, Christ could not be in every place personally; therefore it was altogether for their advantage that He should leave them, go to His father, and send the Holy Spirit to be His successor on earth. The Holy Spirit is Himself divested of the personality of humanity and independent thereof. He would represent Himself as present in all places by His Holy Spirit, as the Omnipresent.”{E. G. White, Manuscript Releases Vol.14, p. 23}

 

While it is true that the infinite God is beyond our finite comprehension, yet all that God has seen fit to present to us concerning himself is contained in the Bible. Fundamental to this, is the statement in Genesis 1:26: Let us make man in our image, after our likeness… We have seen that God, like man, is a physical being. He possesses a physical form and like man, also possesses a spirit as part of his makeup. The two, physical form and Spirit, is what comprises the individual whether God or man or even angels.

We believe that Genesis 1:26 is so fundamental to the whole argument concerning the person, God, that the misconceptions regarding the Holy Spirit simply evaporates in the light of the correct understanding of that verse. God in his totality, whoever he is, can never be composed of anything but form and feature plus a spirit – a physical (form) and a non-physical aspect to himself.

 

The Spirit therefore, is the non-physical aspect of the individual, the person of that individual.  The Spirit of man is housed in a physical body. It is the person of that physical individual. Similarly with God, his Spirit is none other than the person that He is. This non-physical entity is the vehicle by which, God, whether it be the Father or the Son, is omnipresent.  Note the following, speaking of Christ:

 

“Cumbered with humanity, Christ could not be in every place personally; therefore it was altogether for their advantage that He should leave them, go to His father, and send the Holy Spirit to be His successor on earth. The Holy Spirit is Himself divested of the personality of humanity and independent thereof. He would represent Himself as present in all places by His Holy Spirit, as the Omnipresent.”{E. G. White, Manuscript Releases Vol.14, p. 23}

 

The very spirit of the individual called Christ is what renders him omnipresent.

This leads us to objection # 3

 

OBJECTION # 3

“The prince of the power of evil can only be held in check by  power of God in the third person of the Godhead, the Holy Spirit.–Special Testimonies, Series A, No. 10, p. 37. (1897)” {Evangelism, p. 617}

 

This is an interesting objection simply for the fact that the trinitarian argument for a separate individual which the above testimony appears to be saying is not a new one.

 

Our pioneer belief was such that they declared with great unanimity that God and Christ were personal beings but never described the Holy Spirit as another individual, separate and apart from the Father or Son as taught by Trinitarians today.  Ellen White was in harmony with that belief and did not fault them despite instances early in her ministry in which she had to meet with rebuke those who were spiritualizing God away. Inspiration is such that she cannot change her stance on God in later years. What God revealed as truth in the 1840s remains as truth today.

 

Our forefathers understood the above testimony in a way contrary to the popular trinitarian understanding of today.  The dialogue between Elder Butler and Dr Kellogg bears this out. Maybe we ought to let them answer objection # 3 and let Willie White have the final say in his 1935 letter to H W Carr.

 

On October 28, 1903 Kellogg wrote to Butler stating the following:

As far as I can fathom, the difficulty which is found in The Living Temple, the whole thing may be simmered down to the question: Is the Holy Ghost a person? You say no. I had supposed the Bible said this for the reason that the personal pronoun “he” is used in speaking of the Holy Ghost. Sister White uses the pronoun “he” and has said in so many words that the Holy Ghost is the third person of the Godhead. How the Holy Ghost can be the third person and not be a person at all is difficult for me to see.” (Letter from J. H. Kellogg to G. I. Butler, October 28, 1903)

 

Kellogg appeals to the Bible and Sister White to support what we know is gross error. Error which evolved into a trinitarian position on his part. But did not our forefathers and Sister White know that the Bible (and SOP) used the pronoun “He” for the Holy Spirit? Of course they did but this in no way led them to an understanding that the Holy Spirit was another individual separate from the Father and the Son.

 

Kellogg states that the whole basis for his book, “The Living Temple” was the idea that the Holy Spirit was a person. This was definitely not the faith of the BODY at the time as evidenced by Kellogg quoting Butler, “You say no”. The year? – 1903. Remember the Desire of Ages was published in 1898 and many use this book to justify the “trinity” / “tritheism” or the three persons in one GOD concept. It was not put out to correct any doctrinal error of the BODY.

 

She called Kellogg’s position, the Alpha of Apostasy. The endtime delusions would be of most startling nature. She feared for our people. Why? Because the Alpha was met head on and defeated however, the apostasies which has snaked its way in, unawares, and has become the official position of the church. We now have in Adventism a Spirit God without body parts, a god whose existence for which there is no basis in the Bible or SOP, a level of existence which is totally contrary to Genesis 1:26.

 

  1. I. Butler to J. H. Kellogg, April 5, 1904

“God dwells in us by His Holy Spirit, as a Comforter, as a Reprover, especially the former. When we come to Him we partake of Him in that sense, because the Spirit comes forth from him; it comes forth from the Father and the Son. It is not a person walking around on foot, or flying as a literal being, in any such sense as Christ and the Father are – at least, if it is, it is utterly beyond my comprehension of the meaning of language or words.” (Letter from G. I. Butler to J. H. Kellogg, April 5, 1904)

 

Notice that the above letter was dated 1904. You do not find Kellogg rushing off to the brethren or to Ellen White dobbing in G I Butler as being in error. You also do not find Ellen White correcting Butler, like she did Kellogg. If the trinity was the truth at the time, then Butler was a heretic in 1904, at a time when Ellen White was alive. If the trinity were correct, she should have reprimanded Butler, however, there is no evidence she did. It was Kellogg who was derailing the faith of the body and who copped Ellen White’s  “wrath”.

 

  1. N. Loughborough, September 20, 1898.

“Gods representative, the power by which he works, the agency by which all things are upheld.” … “the creative energy of God.” J. N. Loughborough, “The Spirit of God, ” Review and Herald, LXXV (September 20, 1898),

 

In September of 1898, Loughborough did not believe in an individual called the Holy Spirit. Similarly, Uriah Smith had this to say:

 

But respecting this Spirit, the Bible uses expressions which cannot be harmonized with the idea that it is a person like the Father and the Son. Rather it is shown to be a divine influence from them both, the medium which represents their presence and by which they have knowledge ad power through all the universe, when not personally present. Uriah Smith, In the Question Chair, Review and Herald, LXVII (October 28, 1890), 664.

 

“Writing for the Signs of the Times in November 1889. C.P. Bollman declared that the Spirit of God “is essentially divine.” But he does not go so far as to portray the Holy Spirit as a distinct personality and member of the Deity. This Spirit is the “power” of God by which the Son created all things. The Spirit is “an essential part of God, and therefore, necessarily divine,” but “it” remains to Bollman an impersonal power.” The Arian or Anti-Trinitarian Views Presented in Seventh-day Adventist Literature and the Ellen G White Answer. June 1963 by Erwin Roy Gane.

 

Ellen White 1904-1909

“They have one God and one Saviour; and one Spirit–the Spirit of Christ–is to bring unity into their ranks.” {E. G. White, Testimonies Volume 9, p. 189}

 

  1. C. Wilcox, 1911

Question 187: What is the difference between the Holy Spirit and the ministering spirits (angels), or are they the same?

 

Answer: The Holy Spirit is the mighty energy of the Godhead, the life and power of God flowing out from Him to all parts of the universe, and thus making living connection between His throne and all creation. As is expressed by another: “The Holy Spirit is the breath of spiritual life in the soul. The impartation of the Spirit is the impartation of the life of Christ.” It thus makes Christ everywhere present. To use a crude illustration, just as a telephone carries the voice of a man, and so makes that voice present miles away, so the Holy Spirit carries with it all the potency of Christ in making Him everywhere present with all His power, and revealing Him to those in harmony with His law. Thus the Spirit is personified in Christ and God, but never revealed as a separate person. Never are we told to pray to the Spirit; but to God for the Spirit. Never do we find in the Scriptures prayers to the Spirit, but for the Spirit. (M. C. Wilcox, 1911, Questions and Answers Gathered From the Question Corner Department of the Signs of the Times, pages 181, 182)

 

  1. C. Wilcox, 1919

Wherever God’s children are, there is the Spirit – not an individual person, as we look upon persons, but having the power to make present the Father and the Son. The Spirit is placed upon God’s messengers, the angels; but the angels are not the Spirit. The Spirit is placed upon God’s servants, His human messengers, but the human messengers are not the Spirit. They are possessed by the Spirit, and used by the Spirit, and have within them the power of the Spirit; but they are not the Spirit. The Spirit is independent of all these human or material agencies. Why not leave it there? Why not know that the Spirit, the Spirit of God, the Spirit of Christ, the Spirit of Deity goes out into all the earth bringing the presence of God to every heart that will receive it? M.C. Wilcox Questions and Answers Vol 11. 1919.

 

Willie White, 1935 – some twenty years after Ellen White’s death:

The statements and the arguments of some of our ministers, in their effort to prove that the Holy Spirit is an individual as are God the Father and Christ, the eternal Son, have perplexed me, and sometimes they have made me sad. One popular teacher said We may regard Him, as the fellow who is down here running things. My perplexities were lessened a little when I learned from the dictionary that one of the meanings of personality was characteristics. It is stated in such a way that I concluded that there might be personality without bodily form which is possessed by the Father and the Son. There are many Scriptures which speak of the Father and the Son and the absence of Scripture making similar reference to the united work of the Father and the Holy Spirit or of Christ and the Holy Spirit, has led me to believe that the spirit without individuality was the representative of the Father and the Son throughout the universe, and it was through the Holy Spirit that they dwell in our hearts and make us one with the Father and with the Son. Letter, W. C. White to H. W. Carr, April 30, 1935

 

Note the dates: 1897 – 1935. There is no inkling of any support for a trinity God.  Others have succeeded in making the denomination trinitarian. These, like Kellogg, have manipulated Ellen White to make it appear she was the one who initiated the change.

 

OBJECTION # 4

“Sin could be resisted and overcome only through the mighty agency of the third person of the Godhead, who would come with no modified energy, but in the fullness of divine power.  {FLB 52.6}

 

There is only one power that can combat and overcome evil. He came and fulfilled the mission perfectly.  There is only one name under heaven whereby we are saved.

 

“Christ declared that after his ascension, he would send to his church, as his crowning gift, the Comforter, who was to take his place. This Comforter is the Holy Spirit,–the soul of his life, the efficacy of his church, the light and life of the world. With his Spirit Christ sends a reconciling influence and a power that takes away sin.  {RH, May 19, 1904 par. 1}

 

“The Spirit was given as a regenerating agency, and without this the sacrifice of Christ would have been of no avail. The power of evil had been strengthening for centuries, and the submission of man to this satanic captivity was amazing. Sin could be resisted and overcome only through the mighty agency of the third person of the Godhead, who would come with no modified energy, but in the fulness of divine power. It is the Spirit that makes effectual what has been wrought out by the world’s Redeemer. It is by the Spirit that the heart is made pure. Through the Spirit the believer becomes a partaker of the divine nature. Christ has given his Spirit as a divine power to overcome all hereditary and cultivated tendencies to evil, and to impress his own character upon the church.  {RH, May 19, 1904 par. 3}

 

“When the soul surrenders itself to Christ, a new power takes possession of the new heart. A change is wrought which man can never accomplish for himself. It is a supernatural work, bringing a supernatural element into human nature. The soul that is yielded to Christ becomes His own fortress, which He holds in a revolted world, and He intends that no authority shall be known in it but His own. A soul thus kept in possession by the heavenly agencies is impregnable to the assaults of Satan. But unless we do yield ourselves to the control of Christ, we shall be dominated by the wicked one. We must inevitably be under the control of the one or the other of the two great powers that are contending for the supremacy of the world. It is not necessary for us deliberately to choose the service of the kingdom of darkness in order to come under its dominion. We have only to neglect to ally ourselves with the kingdom of light. If we do not co-operate with the heavenly agencies, Satan will take possession of the heart, and will make it his abiding place. The only defense against evil is the indwelling of Christ in the heart through faith in His righteousness. Unless we become vitally connected with God, we can never resist the unhallowed effects of self-love, self-indulgence, and temptation to sin. We may leave off many bad habits, for the time we may part company with Satan; but without a vital connection with God, through the surrender of ourselves to Him moment by moment, we shall be overcome. Without a personal acquaintance with Christ, and a continual communion, we are at the mercy of the enemy, and shall do his bidding in the end.  {DA 324.1}

 

Think about it Friend, the so called Third Person of the Trinity never came to this earth to fight the battles of man, it was Jesus who did.

 

The Third Person of the Trinity never became a man, it was Jesus who did.

The Third Person of the Trinity can never be touched by the feelings of our infirmity, it was Jesus who was.

The Third Person of the Trinity has never been tempted like as we are, it was Jesus who was.

The Third Person of the Trinity never overcame anything on man’s behalf, it was Jesus who did.

The Third Person of the Trinity never died for you, it was Jesus who did.

 

SO WHO THEN IS THE HOLY SPIRIT, THE THIRD PERSON OF THE GODHEAD?

 

The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of the individual called Christ. It is called another Comforter because Jesus was to be present with the disciples in another way, a very different way, by His Spirit, invisible to them and to the world. God sent us His son in the Flesh to pay the penalty for sin and He has sent us His son, in the Spirit, to keep us free from sin. Sister White says the disciples could not understand this sort of spiritual manifestation:

 

  1. “That Christ should manifest Himself to them, and yet be invisible to the world, was a mystery to the disciples. They could not understand the words of Christ in their spiritual sense. They were thinking of the outward, visible manifestation. They could not take in the fact that they could have the presence of Christ with them, and yet He be unseen by the world. They did not understand the meaning of a spiritual manifestation.” The Southern Review- 09-13-98
  2. They were to teach the observance of all things whatsoever Jesus had commanded  them, and were to baptize in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost. Jesus was about to be removed from his disciples; but he assured them that although he should ascend to his Father, his Spirit and influence would be with them always, and with their successors even unto the end of the world. Christ could not have left his followers a more precious legacy than the assurance that his presence would be with them through all the dark and trying hours of life. When Satan seems ready to destroy the church of God, and bring his people to confusion, they should remember that One has promised to be with them who has said, “All power is given unto me in Heaven and on earth.”  Redemption: or the Resurrection of Christ; and His Ascension -PG- 56
  3. .“…when on the day of Pentecost the promised Comforter descended, and the power from on high was given, and the souls of the believers thrilled with the conscious presence of their ascended Lord,–” GC 350.1
  4. The work of the Holy Spirit is immeasurably great. It is from this Source that power and efficiency come to the worker for God; and the Holy Spirit is the Comforter, as the personal presence of Christ to the soul. He who looks to Christ in simple, childlike faith is made a partaker of the divine nature through the agency of the Holy Spirit. When led by the Spirit of God, the Christian may know that he is made complete in Him who is the head of all things. As Christ was glorified on the day of Pentecost, so will He again be glorified in the closing work of the gospel, when He shall prepare a people to stand the final test, in the closing conflict of the great controversy. {YRP 177.1}
  5. The reason why the churches are weak and sickly and ready to die is that the enemy has brought influences of a discouraging nature to bear upon trembling souls. He has sought to shut Jesus from their view as the Comforter, as one who reproves, who warns, who admonishes them, saying, “This is the way, walk ye in it.” Christ has all power in heaven and in earth, and He can strengthen the wavering, and set right the erring. He can inspire with confidence, with hope in God; and confidence in God always results in creating confidence in one another.  {RC 21.3}

 

 

OBJECTION # 5

“You  are  born  unto  God,  and  you  stand  under  the sanction and the power of the three holiest beings in heaven, who are able to keep you from falling. You are to reveal that you are dead to sin; your life is hid with Christ in God. Hidden “with Christ in God,”–wonderful transformation. This is a most precious promise.”  {Manuscript Releases Vol. 7, p. 267}  (also appearing in  Sermons and Talks Volume One p. 367)

 

Short  Answer:

This  statement  is  a  report  of  a  sermon  preached  by  Mrs. White.  When  comparing  this  report  with  published  writings  we  see  that  a  slight reporting  error  happened  (as  is  the  case  to  this  day).  Mrs.  White  did  not  write  the words “three holiest beings” at all. According to her instruction we are to examine the published writings when faced with reports that contradict.

 

Detailed Answer:

Some people use this statement to support the theory of three gods (three divine beings who are separate and coequal). It is truly alarming how people  fail  to  do  their  homework  properly  in  light  of  the  momentous  issues  we  are dealing with. Let it be known  that Mrs. White  never  put pen to paper and wrote “three holiest beings”. She is  not  the author of these words. We shall now examine closely what the record reveals and let all men be informed of the facts of the matter.

 

This statement is actually a report  of a sermon that Mrs. White preached on Sabbath  afternoon October 20, 1906 in Oakland, California. This report was produced  after she died  (7MR 267).  The statement also appears in the book Sermons and Talks, Book 1. In the forward of the book we are told:

 

“ALL THE MESSAGES REPRODUCED IN THIS VOLUME WERE DELIVERED IN PUBLIC AND STENOGRAPHICALLY REPORTED, OR WERE PREPARED WITH THAT PURPOSE IN VIEW. MANY OF ELLEN WHITE’S SERMONS MAY BE FOUND IN THE REVIEW AND HERALD AND SIGNS OF THE TIMES, BUT NEARLY ALL OF THOSE INCLUDED IN THIS SERIES HAVE BEEN DRAWN FROM PREVIOUSLY UNPUBLISHED MANUSCRIPTS, AS THEY APPEAR IN OUR FILES. SO, ALTHOUGH  THERE WERE NO TAPE RECORDERS IN ELLEN WHITE’S DAY, A PERSON MAY GET THE TRUE “FEEL” OF ELLEN WHITE AS A SPEAKER BY READING THIS BOOK.” (p. i)

 

This is a very honest admission from the WHITE ESTATE telling us that Mrs. White did not pen those words; rather they were a report of what she said. It is very obvious that a slight mistake was made in reporting this sermon.

 

Naturally,  Ellen  White  could  not  check  anything  that  was  published  after  she  died. Therefore  she  instructed  us  that  we  are  to  read  her  published  works  since  she carefully  reviewed  these  works  herself.  It  is  interesting  that  this  statement  of  “three holiest  beings” only saw the light of day very recently. The date of release is noted by the White Estate as follows:

 

“Released March 16, 1976.”  {Manuscript Releases 7, p. 273}

 

It would be difficult for Ellen White to check and review this report of her sermon   prior to publication; she had been dead for a long time! There is no evidence that can prove that Mrs. White ever checked the words “three holiest beings”!

 

The reality of the situation here is that these are not confirmed words. Certainly the White Estate is being honest. So also is Tim Poirer when he openly admits that the manuscript in question does not have sister White’s signature on it. Yet for the sake of argument let’s assume that sister White said “three holiest beings.” Therefore we must balance that with what she published.

“To know God is to love Him; His character must be manifested in contrast to the character of Satan. This work ONLY ONE BEING in all the universe could do. Only He who knew the height and depth of the love of God could make it known. Upon the world’s dark night the Sun of Righteousness must rise, “with healing in His wings.” Malachi 4:2. {DA 22.1}

Note: If the holy Spirit is a Being in the exact same sense as Father and Son then why could not It (or He) do this work?

The Son of God, heaven’s glorious Commander, was touched with pity for the fallen race. His heart was moved with infinite compassion as the woes of the lost world rose up before Him. But divine love had conceived a plan whereby man might be redeemed. The broken law of God demanded the life of the sinner. In all the universe THERE WAS BUT ONE WHO COULD, IN BEHALF OF MAN, SATISFY ITS CLAIMS. Since the divine law is as sacred as God Himself, only one equal with God could make atonement for its transgression. None but Christ could redeem fallen man from the curse of the law and bring him again into harmony with Heaven. Christ would take upon Himself the guilt and shame of sin—sin so offensive to a holy God that it must separate the Father and His Son. Christ would reach to the depths of misery to rescue the ruined race. {PP 63.2}

Note: Again if the holy Spirit is a Being just like the Father and Son why couldn’t It (or He) satisfy the claims of God’s law. After all there are 3 co-equal beings in the trinity right?

Before the entrance of evil there was peace and joy throughout the universe. All was in perfect harmony with the Creator’s will. Love for God was supreme, love for one another impartial. Christ the Word, the Only Begotten of God, was one with the eternal Father,—one in nature, in character, and in purpose,—THE ONLY BEING IN ALL THE UNIVERSE THAT COULD ENTER INTO ALL THE COUNSELS AND PURPOSES OF GOD. By Christ the Father wrought in the creation of all heavenly beings. “By Him were all things created, that are in heaven, … whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers” (Colossians 1:16); and to Christ, equally with the Father, all heaven gave allegiance. {GC 493.1}

The Sovereign of the universe was not alone in His work of beneficence. He had an associate—a co-worker who could appreciate His purposes, and could share His joy in giving happiness to created beings. “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God.” John 1:1, 2. Christ, the Word, the only begotten of God, was one with the eternal Father—one in nature, in character, in purpose—THE ONLY BEING THAT COULD ENTER INTO ALL THE COUNSELS AND PURPOSES OF GOD. “His name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.” Isaiah 9:6. His “goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting.” Micah 5:2. And the Son of God declares concerning Himself: “The Lord possessed Me in the beginning of His way, before His works of old. I was set up from everlasting…. When He appointed the foundations of the earth: then I was by Him, as one brought up with Him: and I was daily His delight, rejoicing always before Him.” Proverbs 8:22-30. {PP 34.1}

Note: Again if the 3 beings are all alike then why is Christ “the only Being” who can enter into all of God’s counsels?

Mansions are prepared for all who have subjected themselves in obedience to the divine law. And in order that the human family might have no excuse because of Satan’s temptations, Christ became one with them. THE ONLY BEING WHO WAS ONE WITH GOD lived the law in humanity, descended to the lowly life of a common laborer, and toiled at the carpenter’s bench with His earthly parent. He lived the life which He requires of all who claim to be His children. Thus was cut off the powerful argument of Satan that God required of humanity a self-denial and subjection that He would not Himself render. And thus was taken from Satan’s hands the weapons he designed to use against God. {Lt121-1897.7}

Note: If the trinity is 3 beings who are the one true god then the statement above is highly problematic because she calls Christ “the only Being who WAS one with God.

 

LET’S HERE THE CONCLUSION OF THE MATTER

“Christ the Word, the Only Begotten  of God, was one with the eternal Father,–one in nature, in character, and in purpose,–the  only  being in all the universe  that could enter  into  all  the  counsels  and  purposes  of  God.”  {E.  G.  White,  The  Great Controversy, p. 493}

 

“The only being who was one with God lived the law in humanity, descended to the lowly  life  of  a  common  laborer,  and  toiled  at  the  carpenter’s  bench  with  his  earthly parent.” {E. G. White, Signs of the Times, October 14, 1897 par. 3}

 

“And  now  to  all  who  have  a  desire  for  truth  I  would  say:  Do  not  give  credence  to unauthenticated reports as to what Sister White has done  or said  or written.  If you desire  to  know  what  the  Lord  has  revealed  through  her,  read  her  published works.”  {E. G. White, Testimonies Volume 5, p. 696}

 

THIS IS THE ELLEN G. WHITE THE LORD’S MESSENGERS TRUE WORDS LOOK NO FURTHER

2Peter 1:16: For we have not followed CUNNINGLY DEVISED FABLES,

 

Jude 1:3, 4: Beloved, when I gave all DILIGENCE to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should EARNESTLY CONTEND FOR THE FAITH WHICH WAS ONCE DELIVERED UNTO THE SAINTS. 4: For there are CERTAIN MEN crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and DENYING THE ONLY LORD GOD, AND OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST.

 

I want first to apologize for taking long to answer your question. I have been busy attending classes and doing some projects. The texts you refer to: Heb 9:14 may seem difficult if you don’t understand the doctrine of the Godhead clearly and believe in Trinity. But once you understand the Godhead, then the verse becomes simple.

 

Heb 9:14 How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?

 

Compare with:

Acts: 20:28 Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.

 

When you read Heb 9:14 and Acts 20:28, you may reach to a conclusion that the Holy Spirit shed its blood or died also for humanity, that’s not the case cause the Holy Spirit in not a material thing. The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of the Father given to the Son, hence because the Father is eternal, the Holy Spirit is eternal. NOTICE THE FOLLOWING:

 

Romans 8:9 But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the SPIRIT OF GOD dwell in you. Now if any man have not the SPIRIT OF CHRIST, he is none of his.

John 3:34, 35: For he whom God hath sent speaketh the words of God: for God giveth not the Spirit by measure unto him. 35: The Father loveth the Son, and hath given all things into his hand.

 

The Father gave the Son his Spirit, it’s this Eternal Spirit that doesn’t back off from burdens that encouraged the Son of God to offer himself for us. It’s this Spirit of the Father given to the Son that enabled him to live a life without spot and every believer can possess this eternal Spirit of the Father if they submit to Him and His Son.

 

Who through the eternal Spirit] This expression in Heb 9:14 can be understood in two ways:

  1. Of the Holy Ghost himself. As Christ’s miraculous conception was by the Holy Spirit, and he wrought all his miracles by the Spirit of God, so his death or final offering was made through or by the eternal Spirit; and by that Spirit he was raised from the dead, 1Peter 3:18. Indeed, through the whole of his life be was justified by the Spirit; and we find that in this great work of human redemption, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit were continually employed: therefore the words may be understood of the Holy Spirit properly.

 

  1. Of the eternal Logos or Deity which dwelt in the man Christ Jesus, through the energy of which the offering of his humanity became an infinitely meritorious victim; therefore the Deity of Christ is here intended.

 

The voluntary nature of the offering gives it especial efficacy. He “through the eternal Spirit,” that is, His divine Spirit (Ro 1:4, in contrast to His “flesh,” Heb 9:3; His Godhead, 1Ti 3:16; 1Pe 3:18), “His inner personality”, which gave a free consent to the act, offered Himself. The animals offered had no spirit or will to consent in the act of sacrifice; they were offered according to the law; they had a life neither enduring, nor of any intrinsic efficacy. But He from eternity, with His divine and everlasting Spirit, concurred with the Father’s will of redemption by Him. His offering began on the altar of the cross, and was completed in His entering the holiest place with His blood. The eternity and infinitude of His divine Spirit (compare Heb 7:16) gives eternal (“eternal redemption,” Heb 9:12, also compare Heb 9:15) and infinite merit to His offering, so that not even the infinite justice of God has any exception to take against it. It was “through His most burning love, flowing from His eternal Spirit,” that He offered Himself. Christ was actuated and filled with a Divine influence when he offered up himself as a sacrifice–an influence which was not of a temporal and fleeting nature, but which was eternal in its efficacy. Christ made his great sacrifice under the extraordinary influences of that Eternal Spirit.

 

Acts: 20:28 Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.

 

On this one, scripture must be compared to scripture in other places. We ask ourselves, is it the Holy Ghost which made the apostles of Jesus overseers of the Flock or is it Jesus? Notice

 

John 21:15-17: So when they had dined, Jesus saith to Simon Peter, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me more than these? He saith unto him, Yea, Lord; thou knowest that I love thee. He saith unto him, Feed my lambs. 16: He saith to him again the second time, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me? He saith unto him, Yea, Lord; thou knowest that I love thee. He saith unto him, Feed my sheep. 17: He saith unto him the third time, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me? Peter was grieved because he said unto him the third time, Lovest thou me? And he said unto him, Lord, thou knowest all things; thou knowest that I love thee. Jesus saith unto him, Feed my sheep.

 

Matthew 26:28 For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.

 

From the above, you find that its Christ who has made us overseers of the flock and he is the one who shed his blood. But why is the Spirit used instead? Because Christ is ministering in heaven and the Holy Spirit is His representing on the earth, so anything that happens on the earth is overseen by the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of Christ, which is the Spirit of the Father which in turn is eternal Spirit cause the Father is eternal.

 

Hope that helps

Blessings

3 Holiest Beings

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