Preface

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In the mid-nineteen-fifties T. Housel Jemison, an associate director of the White Estate, wrote a book entitled, A Prophet Among You. This comprehensive work on the gift of prophecy focused specifically on the life and ministry of Ellen G. White. For many years it was used in Seventh-day Adventist colleges as the standard textbook on the gift of prophecy.

But in recent decades, much has been learned regarding inspiration/revelation, hence in 1989 the Board of Trustees of the Ellen G. White Estate authorized production of a new book. Sponsors included not only the White Estate but the General Conference Department of Education and the Board of Higher Education.

Herbert E. Douglass was selected as the author. Dr. Douglass, who taught Spirit of prophecy courses in college, had also served as a college president, associate editor of the Adventist Review, and book editor of the Pacific Press. He immediately began work on the project, researching the subject thoroughly.

Exposure to a galaxy of scholars and ideas is reflected in the footnotes throughout the book, but the fact that an author is quoted on a particular point should not be taken as an endorsement either of the person or of all the ideas or positions held by that person.

We believe that this book presents the prophetic ministry of Ellen G. White in a way that makes it appealing to both young and old. Instead of approaching the subject from the abstract to the personal, it leads from the personal to the abstract. As a result, readers will become acquainted with Mrs. White. Further, they will be drawn closer to the personal God whom she served; they will admire the wise and careful way in which He communicated His messages to His messenger; and they will be awe-struck as they observe the way He led her through the theological, medical, and social mine fields of her day.

Readers will find at the end of each chapter a series of study questions that will lead into further, deeper discussion of the subject covered by the chapter. The questions may function as a review of the chapter, and may encourage research that will enlarge readers’ understanding of the topic presented in the chapter.

We believe that everyone who reads this book will understand better how God works through His prophets, and will be deeply convicted that Ellen White was divinely called to the prophetic office. They will also face the future with new confidence and strengthened faith, exclaiming with God’s messenger: “We have nothing to fear for the future, except as we shall forget the way the Lord has led us, and His teaching in our past history” (Life Sketches, p. 196).

The Board of Trustees of the Ellen G. White Estate, Inc.

Silver Spring, Maryland

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