Saturday, July 18, 2015

Raw Notes: Ellen White's Last Whisper

Sermon Notes

Theme: Adventist History
Title: Ellen Whites Last Whisper
Texts: 2 Timothy 1:12

Topic Sentence:  We have often contented ourselves with asking the questions:  What, When, How Where, Why?   But the most important question of faith is Who?   (The answer is Jesus)

Ellen White’s Last Whisper (Her final spoken words.) were Scripture.   “I know in Whom I have believed.”

Scripture Reading Matthew 7:21-23

Closing Hymn/Song Number:   I Know Whom I Have Believed  511

Speaker:  Elder O. Kris Widmer: 

Date: July 18, 2015
Place: Antioch, California
Commemorating 100 Years 
From the Death of Ellen G. White

  1. Introduction
    1. This Weekend is Commemoration of Ellen White’s Legacy…on the occasion of 100 years to the Day of her Death.
    2. EGW Died 1.5 hours from here…at her home…Elmshaven. 
    3. Which was July 16, 1915 at 3:40 p.m.
    4. PUC is having a big weekend….speakers, art exhibit, etc.
    5. Elder Jim Pedersen…our Northern Conference President in his prayer at that moment July 16 3:40 is reported saying…
  1. He acknowledged the sacredness of the place, because angels visited Mrs. White there. 
  2. He gave thanks for her and her guidance to the community. 
  3. Then he asked for forgiveness for the times when we have ignored her advice, 
  4. for when we have put her words above the Bible, 
  5. for when we have used her words to judge other people.
    1. I have known some of EGW’s living relatives
      1. Charles White, Pastor in Arizona Now…used to live in Paradise.
      2. Grace Jaques - used to give the tours at Elmshaven.   I have met.
      3. The Kubrock Family
        1. Gladys and Daniel Kubrock
        2. Their Children and Grandchildren
        3. Still Serving the Church
      4. I Pastor’ed the Eemshaven Church for 4.5 years.
      5. I lived 2 Driveways Down…off Glass Mountain Road
      6. I’ve sung and given communion to the residents of Rosehaven…a nursing home.  It’s in Willie White’s old house.
    2. We…here in Antioch… are marking it by this sermon.
    3. One of EGW’s 3 funerals was held in what is now Contra Costa County….so nearby.
    4. Northern California and the Bay Area have deep history in our church…Pacific Press, Healdsburg College, Elmshaven.
    5. Today’s Sermon:  Two Parts…
      1. A Historical Account of Ellen White’s Death and Burial.
      2. A Meditation for Us Today…on Ellen White’s Last Whisper.  (Inspirational)
      3. Pause in Adventist Hope.   100 Years.   We are still here.
  1. Body
  1. First the History….
  2. In the 6 Volume Biography…grab volume six.  
    1. Last Two Chapters
    2. Chapter 31 - The Last Mile
    3. Chapter 32 - The Messenger of the Lord at Rest
  3. Ellen’s Injury
    1. On Sabbath Morning, February 13, 1915  Ellen White was entering her study…upstairs at her retirement home at Elmshaven.
    2. At the age of 87+ she may have reached “shut-in” status.
    3. She fell.
    4. Her nurse, May Walling, lifted her to a rocking chair and pulled her through the hall…to the bedroom…got her to bed.
    5. No 911 Phone Call. No Ambulance.
    6. Hot and Cold Fomentations were Applied
    7. Dr. came to her bed…said it was either a sprain or break.
    8. Painfully she was taken…down stairs, out the house, to a horse drawn buggy…and taken up the hill to St. Helena Sanitarium.
    9. No Spring Legged Gurney.  No Muscular EMT’s
    10. X-Ray:   Broken Femur…at the junction of head and neck.
    11. Then the painful return trip back to Elmshaven.
    12. Willie…telegraphed… the news out.   "Sabbath noon, Mother, entering her study, tripped and fell, causing an intracapsular fracture to the left femur. " 
    13. As a Tweet, he would still have 28 characters to spare.
    14. Sunday: the Sanitarium sent down a hospital bed to make her more comfortable.
  4. Ellen’s Death
    1. Thus began the next 5 months and 3 days…or the final 153 days of Ellen G. White’s life.
    2. She had good days and bad days…
    3. Keeping her sense of humor.  “I had a good day - in spots.”
    4. June…rapid decline…not eating much.
    5. Friday, July 16…her family and staff gathered around her bed.
    6. 3:40 p.m. - stopped breathing…after her respirations had reached 10 per minute.
    7. Willie: “it was like the burning out of a candle…so quiet.”
  5. Ellen’s Funeral Preparations Were Ready…
    1. Even today…in the news organizations…they write obituaries in advance…so they are ready.   Aged stars, aged politicians.   Billy Graham’s obituary is already written.  He is 97 this November.
    2. Elmshaven had already sent pictures and articles to the news papers:  California, New York, Michigan.
    3. All they needed to do was send a telegram.
    4. Friday…Willie sent that telegram.
    5. And…they also printed 220 invitations to the first of 3 public services.
  6. Ellen’s Funerals
    1. She was served by undertakers - Friday to Sunday
    2. But Saturday: she was laid out in her bedroom, already in a casket.
    3. Simple Black… Silver Tag “At Rest”.  (We have pictures.)
    4. Sunday: She was in the living room, downstairs.
    5. “Visitation” it is called.
    6. #1 was Sunday  5 p.m.…on the Elmshaven Lawn.
    7. California Conference President Spoke. Elder Farnsworth.
    8. Monday morning Willie and Sara McInturfer took her body by train to Richmond
    9. #2 - The California Camp Meeting was Going On.
    10. Monday Morning:  1000 People
    11. They people has asked…knowing she’d be transported their direction.
    12. “Bring her to camp meeting.  If she had been well…she’d be here.   She’s been to so many camp meetings.”
    13. Pacific Union Conference President. E.E. Andross Spoke.
    14. 3:00 on the Train…East.
    15. Thursday, July 22…arrival in Michigan.
    16. Edson and another man got on the train early…and discussed arrangements in route.
    17. #3 - Battle Creek
      1. Sabbath Morning  July 24, 2014
      2. 8:00 to 10:30 a.m.  Viewing for 2,000 people.
      3. 11:00  Church was pre-empted by Funeral
      4. (Confirming my theory that funerals should be worship services.)
      5. (Confirming my theory that funerals are just fine for a Sabbath event in the church.)
      6. We have the program from that day.
      7. Plaform filled with green palm plants and floral tributes.:  Broken Wheel, Broken Pillar, Open Bible, Cross
      8. A.G. Daniels - G.C. President - Life Sketch
      9. S.N. Haskel - The Message
      10. 3,500 inside, 1,000 outside.
      11. And they were not alone either.  Many Adventist Churches…nation wide had memorial services…either for church or in the afternoon.   Walla Walla did!
      12. After the service, it was out to the grave.
        1. Every carriage in the city.
        2. A few cars
        3. 9 Street Cars:   This is funny: So Adventist
        4. “No Fares: The church has pre-paid the fare!”
    18. Later…Willie got a message:   All funeral expenses, and his and Sara M.’s travel..paid by a three way split:  GC, NAD, RH Publishing.   Trains, Casket, Mortitian, Head Stone, Lodging, …from the time of death until they got home to California.
    19. Everyone went home….
      1. 6BIO pg 447 - Staff was Separating….going here and there.
        1. Mtn. View - Pacific Press
        2. back to Australia
        3. Willits Pastorate
        4. RH Publishing
        5. Home care for step-daughter.
        6. Crisler:  Editor:  Final 2 Chapters on Prophets and Kings…then China
        7. Willie was left…alone.
    20. Thus Ended Ellen G. White’s Productive Life
      1. No Computer.  No Email.
      2. A Staff of Helpers and Servants, to be sure.
      3. 100,000 Adventist World Wide…now there are 19 million.
      4. 37 Publishing Houses
      5. 34 Sanitariums
      6. 70 Intermediate Schools, academies and colleges
      7. 510 Elementary Schools
      8. Time in U.S., Europe, Australia.
      9. 3,000,000 words…long hands
      10. 5,000 Articles
      11. 40 Books
      12. Thousands of Sermons/Talks
      13. Thousands of one-on-one conferences.
      14. 2,000 visions and dreams.
      15. Pretty good for a 5’2’’ tall woman with a broken nose and who had had a stroke back in her mid-life!
      16. And…still we can’t find the biblical mandate to ordain other women whom God calls and gifts!?
  1. Scriptural Meditation - Inspiration.
    1. Now I want to go back to Ellen’s White Last Words.
    2. They were Whispered.
  1. Friday, July 9 - Her last spoken words . a Whisper.
  2. 8 (inclusive) days before her death.
  3. Quoting Scripture:  “2 Timothy 1:12  
  4. “I know in Whom I have believed.”
  5. Victorians particularly took note and recorded the last words of the dying.  They were thought to be important.
  6. This was put on a Ribbon…and staked to a White Rose Cross at the Battle Creek Funeral…It’s in the pictures of the front of the church and at the grave.

  1. Body
    1. Most of us know WHAT we believe.
      1. 6 Key Divisions:    God, Man, Salvation, Church, Christian Life, Last Things
      2. The S’s - Salvation, Sabbath, Sanctuary, State of the Dead, Second Coming, Stewardship, 
      3. 28 Statements of Belief
      4. Charts, Graphs, Time Lines
    2. We have often contented ourselves with asking the questions:  What, When, How, Where, Why?   But the most important question of faith is Who?   (The answer is Jesus) 
    3. What:  Topics
    4. What:  Second Coming
      1. When:  Soon
      2. How: In the Clouds
      3. How: Power and Glory, Resurrection, Feet won’t touch.
      4. Where: Earth
      5. Why:  To destroy the Devil and Raise the Dead.
      6. Who? - 
    5. What:  Sabbath
      1. When: Sundown to Sundown, Seventh-day
      2. How:  No Pleasure, no swimming, no _____
      3. Where: Church, Nature
      4. Why?:  God said so.  4th Commandment
      5. Who? - The Lord of the Sabbath, The Sabbath was made for Man.
    6. What:  Sanctuary
      1. When:  1844
      2. How:  Blood of the Cross
      3. Where:  2nd Apartment of Heaven (not the second phase of Jesus’ ministry)
      4. Why:  to blott out sins of humanity.  To see if you are savable. Doubt.
      5. Who? :  The Heavenly High Priest and Judge is the Savior that LOVES you.
    7. The Whole Verse  2 Timothy 1:12
      1. “For this reason I also suffer these things. (vs 8 talks about suffering for the gospel.)
      2. “But I am not ashamed”…no, Ellen.  You had nothing to be ashamed of.   Good Job, Girl!
        1. We as a church should be ashamed of the last 100 years how we twisted and used and abused you.
        2. It is amazing to me how the General Conference can vote “Confidence in the Spirit of Prophecy” one moment….
          1. and this weekend celebrate the amazing accomplishments of our first female minister….
          2. and then ignore all her counsel about men and women being fitted, trained for pastoral ministry on Wed, July 8, 2015.
            1. How does this happen.   
            2. We are fallen human beings.
            3. We see through a glass darkly
            4. We interpret all things through our preconceived cultural biases.
            5. Only the Spirit can guide us into truth.
        3. “For I know whom I have believed”
          1. Faith is not a what, a when, a why, a how, where.
          2. It’s a WHOM.
        4. “I am convinced that he is able to guard what I have entrusted to Him…
          1. What are you trusting to Him, Ellen.
          2. My Last Whisper
          3. My Final Breath on July 16, 1915
          4. My Next Breath on the Resurrection Morning.
        5. until that day.”
          1. Which Day is That
          2. “A great day is coming…heaven’s gates will open wide..”
          3. “What a day that will be…when my Savior’s face I’ll see…..What a day, glorious day that will be.”
    8. Bible Verses About Knowing Whom
      1. John 17:1-3 - This is eternal life…that they may know you…and Jesus Christ Whom You have sent.
      2. Titus 1:15 - They claim to know God…but their actions deny him.
      3. Galatians 4:6-9 - formerly you did not know God…but now you know God…rather are known by God.
    9. Bible Verses About God Knowing Us
      1. Jeremiah 1:5 - Before I formed you…I knew you.
      2. Luke 12:7 - The very hairs of your head are numbered.
      3. Psalm 103:14 - He knows we are but dust…
      4. Psalm 139:1-5 - You searched me and no me…
      5. Psalm 139:23 - Search Me…Know Me.  Test Me.
      6. Matthew 7:22 - Jesus says in that day  “I never knew you.”
      7. Matthew 25:12 - Depart from me…I do not know you.
      8. Luke 13:22-30 - Parable:  Owner of the House.  “I don’t know you or where you are from.”
    10. Ellen White Knew God.
      1. Teen Conversion to Jesus - 1842 Camp Meeting
      2. One Sermon:  Esther and the King….Reach Out and Touch the Septer.   God the King will always hold it out to you!   It touched her and gave her hope.
      3. Baptized: at about 15 yrs of age.
      4. After 1888…Righteousness by Faith…embracing Jesus.
    11. It’s possible…to know about God…but not know God.
      1. Formal Religion
      2. Legal Religion
      3. Personal Religion
  2. Conclusion
    1.   This Week….the White Estate Released some Letters and Documents….
    2. It was hard to figure out exactly what was new on the site I visited.
    3. But I believe this to be her last written message to her grandchildren.
    4.   Here it is…..
    5. “Remember the Lord will carry us through. 
    6. I am guarding every moment, so that nothing may come between me and the Lord. 
    7. I hope there will not. 
    8. God grant that we may all prove faithful. 
    9. God grant that we may all prove faithful.
    10. There will be a glorious meeting soon.” {Ms1-1915 (April 3, 1915) par. 6} to her Grandchildren.
    11. God grant that we may all prove faithful.
  3. Closing Song:  511
    1. Based on 2 timothy 1:12
    2. It’s perfect.
    3. “I Know Whom I Have Believed”
    4. I know not Why
    5. I know not How
    6. I now not When
    7. But I know Who!

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