Judson S. Washburn

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Image may contain: 1 person, textWho was J.S. Washburn?

J.S. Washburn was twenty-six years old in the year of 1888, the year when Brother Waggoner and Jones delivered to the Adventist Church the special message of ‘Righteousness by Faith’. When he first heard the sermon he rejected it, because he felt that it was contrary to the established teachings of the Adventist Church; thus he sided with Brother Uriah Smith and J.H. Morrison in their disavowal of the doctrine. It was during this time that he first realized that Sister White was in full agreement with Jones and Waggoner, this knowledge led him to question Mrs. White position as the Lord’s special messenger. After a short time of struggle, he met with Sister White and His doubts were dissolved. 

“So I went to have a visit with her in her tent at the Ottawa meeting. I told her I had always thought and believed that she was a prophet. But I was disturbed by the Minneapolis episode. I had thought Uriah Smith and J.H.Morrison were right. "Do you know why J.H. Morrison left the Conference early?" she asked me. I replied, "Yes." Then she told me just what Morrison had said to me—and the revelation of her apparently superhuman knowledge of that private, confidential conversation frightened me. I realized that here was one who knew secrets...Sister White told me of her Guide in Europe, who had stretched His hands out, and said, "There are mistakes being made on both sides in this controversy." Then she added that the "Law in Galatians" is not the real issue of the Conference. The real issue is Righteousness by faith. (She ended by saying) “ E.J. Waggoner can teach righteousness by faith more clearly than I can…(because) the Lord has given him special light on that question”’ (Report of interview with Elder J S Washburn by Wieland June 4, 1950 )

After this meeting, J.S. Washburn and his wife became dear friends with Ellen White. Brother Washburn was the Pastor of the Seventh Day Adventist Church in Washington. Mrs. White was a visitor in their home on occasion and the Ellen White Estate has on record several letters that Sister White wrote to the couple. “May the Lord continue to bless the church in Washington is my prayer. I know the Lord blessed me when I was with you, and He blessed His people. Much love to all in your household, and much love to those with whom we took sweet counsel together in our precious meetings. The Lord lives and reigns, praise His holy name”.  (The Ellen G. White 1888 Materials, page 853, paragraph 1 Chapter Title: To J. S. Washburn and wife).

It was the Conference’s rejection of the special message of ‘Righteousness by Faith’, first given in 1888 that caused the writing of several letters from Mrs. White to the Washburn’s. This rejection greatly sorrowed Sister White, and she wrote to Brother J.S. Washburn to encourage him to continue in the ‘rays of the Sun of Righteousness’, for she knew that he had now fully accepted the message.

“I have great sorrow of heart over the hardness of heart that has been leavening our churches, and is especially seen in those who have had great light. Their blindness of mind is correspondingly great as the light was great that shone upon them. What will be the end of this stubborn unbelief we have yet to learn. I am thankful that the Lord is working in Washington. I hope that you will keep (continue) under the direct rays of the Sun of Righteousness, that the bright beams from the face of Jesus Christ may shine with brightness upon your heart, and that you may reflect their bright rays to others…. Who can anticipate the gifts of infinite Love. "God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth on him should not perish, but have everlasting life." God's love for the world was not manifest because he sent his Son, but because he loved the world He sent his Son into the world that divinity clothed with humanity might touch humanity, while divinity lays hold of infinity. (In a letter to J.S. Washburn. The Ellen G. White 1888 Materials, page 710, paragraph 1)

“In Washington she was entertained in the home of J. S. Washburn, pastor of the Washington church. One day in conversation, thinking of the Minneapolis session and the discussions on righteousness by faith, Washburn asked Ellen White, "What is faith?" Her reply was prompt and simple: "You believe what your father tells you, do you not? That is faith."--As related by J. S. Washburn to the author. To Ellen White, faith was a simple, uncomplicated experience--just trusting belief as a child would trust a father”. (Ellen G. White Volume 3 The Lonely Years 1876-1891, page 469, paragraph 6).

Mr. Washburn became known as a true believer in the Spirit of Prophecy, and Ellen White considered him a defender of the Faith, which was once delivered unto the saints. For example, when Brother Uriah Smith repented himself of his error, in which he ‘burdened’ down the work for two years in the late 1880’s (probably in resistance to the 1888 message of ‘Righteousness by Faith’ given in Minneapolis), it was Brother Washburn to whom Sister White wrote and gave the good news of Brother Smith’s repentance. “Brother Smith has fallen on the Rock, and is broken, and the Lord Jesus will now work with him.” (Ellen G. White Volume 3 The Lonely Years 1876-1891, page 473, letter 32, 1891).

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WHAT IS THE MESSAGE OF 1888 AND HOW DID SISTER WHITE VIEW IT?

    Elders Jones and Waggoner called their special message ‘Righteousness by Faith’ which was given in 1888. In it Jesus Christ is set forth in his true position and faith in him is proclaimed the agent by which humanity can overcome every obstacle and sin. The following shows exactly how Sister White estimated it.

    "The time of test is just upon us, for the loud cry of the third angel has already begun in the revelation of the righteousness of Christ, the sin-pardoning Redeemer: This is the beginning (1888) of the light of the (4th) angel whose glory shall fill the whole earth.." - Selected Messages – bk 1, p.363, Review and Herald of November 22, 1892.

THE LOUD CRY, LATTER RAIN HARVEST MESSAGE OF THE FOURTH ANGEL:

"The message of the (4th) angel  [Revelation 18] following the third is now  [1895 = the LOUD CRY and LATTER RAIN STARTED soon after the 1888 and 1903 conferences that rejected the messages given to them] to be given to all parts of the world. It is to be the harvest message["The message of the fall of Babylon, as given by the second angel [Rev. 14:8], is repeated, with the additional mention of the corruption's which have been entering the [SDA] churches since 1844. The work of this angel comes in at the right time to join in the last great work of the third angel's [Rev. 14:9-12 anti-Pope's anti-trinity, anti-sunday] message as it swells to a loud cry" —Early Writtings, p. 277.1.] and the whole earth will be lighted with the glory of God.  The Lord has this one [last] call of mercy to [give to] the world, but the perversity of men diverts the work from its true bearing, and the light has to struggle amid the darkness of men who feel themselves competent to do a work that God has not appointed them to do." Last Day Events, p 78 (Letter 86, June 18, 1900).

"The message of the fall of Babylon, as given by the second angel [Rev. 14:8]is repeated, with the additional mention of the corruption's which have been entering the [SDA] churches since 1844. The work of this angel comes in at the right time to join in the last great work of the third angel's [Rev. 14:9-12 anti-Pope's anti-trinity, anti-sunday] message as it swells to a loud cry" Early Writtings, p. 277.1.

Learn more about the LOUD CRY, LATTER RAIN MESSAGE THAT IS AGAIN BEING REPEATED NOW HERE.

    "Now it has been Satan’s determined effort to eclipse the view of Jesus and lead man to look to man and trust to man, and be educated to expect help from man. For years the church has been looking to man and expecting much from man, but not looking to Jesus in whom our hopes of eternal life are centered. Therefore, God gave His servants (Elders Jones and Waggoner) a testimony that presented the truth as it is in Jesus, which is the third angel’s message in clear distinct lines." - TM – 93

    "The enemy of God and man is not willing that this truth (Righteousness by Faith) should be clearly presented; for he knows that if the people receive it fully, his power will be broken." -(Review and Herald – Sept. 2, 1889).

    What did Sister White proclaim this message to be? “The Loud Cry of the third Angel”“the light of the angel whose glory shall fill the whole earth’, ‘The truth as it is in Jesus, which is the third angel message’. And what would be the result if people received the message fully? “(Satan’s) power would be broken”. Can a message be declared to be any more important than this one? I think not. The sad truth is, the Conference rejected this message in 1888, and it still rejects it today. Though they may now profess to believe that through faith in Christ we can overcome all sin, yet they have laid aside the true position of Christ, and have now accepted the confusion of Babylon. The following paragraphs clarify the position of Christ as stated in 1888.

    “The Scriptures declare that Christ is "the only begotten son of God." He is begotten, not created. As to when He was begotten, it is not for us to inquire, nor could our minds grasp it if we were told. The prophet Micah tells us all that we can know about it in these words, "But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall He come forth unto Me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from the days of eternity." Micah 5:2, margin. There was a time when Christ proceeded forth and came from God, from the bosom of the Father (John 8:42; 1:18), but that time was so far back in the days of eternity that to finite comprehension it is practically without beginning.”

    “And more than seven hundred years before His first advent, His coming was thus foretold by the word of inspiration: "But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall He come forth unto Me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from the days of eternity." Micah 5:2, margin. We know that Christ "proceeded forth and came from God" (John 8:42), but it was so far back in the ages of eternity as to be far beyond the grasp of the mind of man.” “We honor the Father in honoring the Son. We are mindful of Paul's words, that "to us there is but one God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we in him; and one Lord Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we by him" (1 Cor. 8:6); just as we have already quoted, that it was by Him that God made the worlds. All things proceed ultimately from God, the Father; even Christ Himself proceeded and came forth from the Father, but it has pleased the Father that in Him should all fullness dwell, and that He should be the direct, immediate Agent in every act of creation. Our object in this investigation is to set forth Christ's rightful position of equality with the Father, in order that His power to redeem may be the better appreciated.” (Taken from the booklet, Christ Our Righteousness by E.J. Waggoner).

    As any reader can see this doctrine, which was in accordance with the teaching of all the pioneers of the SDA Church, is in direct opposition to the doctrine of the ‘trinity’, which the Church now holds. Yet, Sister White viewed it as the ‘Truth as it is in Jesus’. How can this be when the Church teaches that Ellen White was a ‘trinitarian’? The truth is, the Church is lying! Sister White truly believed that Jesus Christ was the begotten Son of God, begotten before all creation. "The Eternal Father, the unchangeable one, gave his only begotten Son, tore from his bosom Him who was made in the express image of his person, and sent him down to earth to reveal how greatly he loved mankind. Advent Review and Sabbath Herald - 07-09-95

What Our Pioneer's Believed About The Trinity

Judson S. Washburn wrote an objection letter to the Conference stating that, “The doctrine of the Trinity is regarded as the supreme test of orthodoxy by the Roman Catholic Church,” he proceeded to state why it should be rejected. “Satan has taken some heathen conception of a three-headed monstrosity, and with deliberate intention to cast contempt upon divinity, has woven it into Romanism as our glorious God, an impossible, absurd invention. This monstrous doctrine transplanted from heathenism into the Roman Papal Church is seeking to intrude its evil presence into the teachings of the Third Angel's Message...

If we should go back to the immortality of the soul, purgatory, eternal torment and the Sunday Sabbath, would that be anything less than apostasy? If, however, we leap over all these minor, secondary doctrines and accept and teach the very central root, doctrine of Romanism, the Trinity, and teach that the son of God did not die, even though our words seem to be spiritual, is this anything else or anything less than apostasy, and the very Omega of apostasy?...

However kindly or beautiful or apparently profound his sermons or articles may be, when a man has arrived at the place where he teaches the heathen Catholic doctrine of the Trinity, and denies that the Son of God died for us, is he a true Seventh-day Adventist? Is he even a true preacher of the Gospel?” — (Portions of a letter written by J.S. Washburn in 1939. This letter was liked by a conference president so much that he distributed it to 32 of his ministers). See the full letter from J.S. Washburn on the trinity doctrine here:.

The Letter by J. S. Washburn

     With the knowledge that the Seventh Day Adventist Church did not begin to openly incorporate the ‘trinity doctrine’ into it’s beliefs until 1931 (after the death of the pioneers, including E.G. White); and with the previous information on just who J.S. Washburn was, and his relationship to Sister White, I hope that the following letter which he wrote to the Conference will have a greater impact on your thinking..

“The doctrine of the Trinity is a cruel heathen monstrosity, removing Jesus from his true position of Divine Savior and Mediator. It is true we can not measure or define divinity. It is beyond our finite understanding, yet on this subject of the personality of God the Bible is very simple and plain. The Father, the Ancient of Days, is from eternity. Jesus was begotten of the Father. Jesus speaking through the Psalmist says: “The Lord (Jehovah) has said unto me, Thou art my son, this day have I begotten thee.” - Psalm 2:7.

Again in Proverbs (where Jesus is spoken of under the title of wisdom, See 1 Cor. 1:24), we read: “The Lord (Jehovah) possessed me in the beginning of his way”. - v. 22

“Before the mountains were settled, before the hills was I brought forth.” - v. 24

The Son says he was brought forth, begotten, born of His Father (Jehovah). …

Satan has taken some heathen conception of a three-headed monstrosity, and with deliberate intention to cast contempt upon divinity, has woven it into Romanism as our glorious God, an impossible, absurd invention. This monstrous doctrine transplanted from heathenism into the Roman Papal Church is seeking to intrude its evil presence into the teachings of the Third Angel’s Message. …

And the fact that Christ is not the mediator in the Roman Church demonstrates that the Trinity destroys the truth that Christ is the one, the only mediator. The so-called Christian Church, the Papacy, that originated the doctrine of the Trinity, does not recognize him as the only mediator but substitutes a multitude of ghosts of dead men and women as mediators. If you hold the Trinity doctrine, in reality, Christ is no longer your mediator. …

Seventh-day Adventists claim to take the word of God as supreme authority and to have “come out of Babylon”, to have renounced forever the vain traditions of Rome. If we should go back to the immortality of the soul, purgatory, eternal torment and the Sunday Sabbath, would that be anything less than apostasy? If, however, we leap over all these minor, secondary doctrines and accept and teach the very central root, doctrine of Romanism, the Trinity, and teach that the son of God did not die, even though our words seem to be spiritual, is this anything else or anything less than apostasy, and the very Omega of apostasy?…

However kindly or beautiful or apparently profound his sermons or articles may be, when a man has arrived at the place where he teaches the heathen Catholic doctrine of the Trinity,and denies that the Son of God died for us, is he a true Seventh-day Adventist? Is he even a true preacher of the Gospel? And when many regard him as a great teacher and accept his unscriptural theories, absolutely contrary to the Spirit of Prophecy, it is time that the watchmen should sound a note of warning. … [Portions of a letter written by J. S. Washburn in 1939. This letter was liked by a conference president so much that he distributed it to 32 of his ministers.]


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