The "Food for Worms" Vision
By Robert K. Sanders
Bible: "If what a prophet proclaims in the name of the LORD does not take place or come true, that is a message the LORD has not spoken. That prophet has spoken presumptuously. Do not be afraid of him." Deu 18:22 (NIV)
EGW: "I was shown the company present at the Conference, Said the angel: "Some food for worms, some subjects of the seven last plagues, some will be alive and remain upon the earth to be translated at the coming of Jesus." Ellen G. White, 1 Testimonies, p. 131-132. May 27, 1856.
It is not easy at times to document the outcome of Mrs. White’s vision as she often wrote the outcome years after the fact relying on her memory. Being human she may have been tempted to embellish them. But the vision given May 27,1856 at a conference in Battle Creek, Michigan, can be tested for its accuracy. This vision took place 156 years ago—as of 2012.
The Angel told Ellen:
- First: Said the Angel: "Some food for worms,"
- Second: "some subject to the seven last plagues"
- Third: "some will be alive and remain upon the earth to be translated at the coming of Jesus."
What has been fulfilled?
- First: All have been food for worms, not just some.
- Second: None have been subject to the seven last plagues, as they have not yet begun.
- Third: None are alive and remaining on the earth to be translated.
EGW's vision is 100% failure—or was EGW's angel a failure?
We could stop right here as it has been proven Ellen G. White failed God's test as a prophet. It is hard for the dyed in the wool Seventh-day Adventist to grasp this concept of Ellen being a false prophet. They say that Ellen wrote so many beautiful books, and she did not breathe in vision, and held up a heavy Bible for many minutes, so she must be a prophet. I ask you, where in the Bible is this a test for a prophet? The General conference president, A. G. Daniels stated that, "he did not see her not breathe in vision or hold up a heavy Bible and never met any one that had." 1919 Bible conference record, pp. 28,29. However some may like to see how others in the past has related to this vision since it was given in 1856. So we will continue.
My last Sabbath at Church as a Seventh-day Adventist in October 1994, this 1856 vision was discussed in Sabbath School before class discussion began. A brother said that this was a conditional prophecy and if the Adventists would have done their work Christ would have come and the prophecy would have been fulfilled.
This is what I call putting mortar in the holes of their "firm foundation, the Spirit of Prophecy." There is nothing about this prophecy that suggests that it is conditional. Every failed prophecy by cult leaders could be declared "conditional." The members and leaders of the Seventh-day Adventist Church never understood this as a conditional prophecy as they compiled lists of names to see how close they were to the end of time and as the people on the list were dying they thought Christ was soon to come.
At a conference held in Battle Creek, in 1856, Mrs. White had one of her visions. We quote from I T 131-132:
"I was shown the company present at the Conference. Said the angel, 'Some food for worms, some subjects of the seven last plagues, some will be alive and remain upon the earth to be translated at the coming of Jesus.' "
This vision was given 88 years ago. The writer can well remember when this vision was carried from camp meeting to camp meeting, and read with telling effect, the speakers pointing out the fact that the Lord must come very soon; for nearly all of those who attended that conference were dead.
F. M. Wilcox, editor of the R&H after quoting the above from Mrs. White, commits herself in these words:
"We are firm believers in the spirit of prophecy, and we accept at full face value this statement which we have quoted above." Review and Herald, Jan. 22, 1931, p. 23.
In the same issue, a statement from J. N. Loughborough gives some side-light on Mrs. White's attitude toward a list of the living members of the 1856 Conference. Id. 24:
"About 1904 [forty-eight years after the meeting in 1856], as told to me by Bro. Nelson at the General Conference in 1905, he and George Amadon were making a list of those who attended that meeting in Battle Creek in 1856. They went to see Sister White to ask her if she could remember any names they had omitted. Brother Nelson told me she said, 'What are you doing?' He replied, 'I am getting a list of those who attended that meeting.' She asked, 'What are you going to do with it? He replied, "I am going to have copies of it printed and sent to all our people.' She replied, 'Then you stop right where you are. If they get that list, instead of working to push on the message, they will be watching the Review every week to see who is dead.' "
Would it not be a good plan to publish this vision in some of the Centennial literature? Why not let the people know the truth? Of course, they all know that no righteous angel ever gave that information to Mrs. White, and they know that it was a mistake; and if they were honest, they would acknowledge that it was a mistake.
"It is as easy to make an idol of false doctrines and theories as to fashion an idol of wood or stone." Great Controversy, p. 583, The Centennial Supplement, p. 69 by E. S. Ballenger.
Ellen should have added false visions to her list of what makes an idol.
A list compiled in 1910 by Mrs. Evelyn Lewis-Reavis isted twenty-four living out of sixty-seven that attended that conference. Today (in 1998) the youngest would be one hundred and forty-two years old. As you can see it is impossible for any of them to be alive today. Mrs. Reavis was a member of this conference.
Living Nov. 1910
Ellen G. White
G. W. Amadon
J. E. White
W. C. White
T. B. Lewis
May L. King
Evelyn L. Reavis
Anna L. Wilson
J. W. Bacheller
Arvilla D. Bacheller
Julia J. McDowell
J. H. Kellogg
Mrs. R. M. Kilgore
J. R. Lewis
Mrs. J. R. Lewis
H. N. White
Dan R. Palmer
J. P. Kellogg
Mrs. J. P. Kellogg
Roxana R. Cornell
Jennie F. Rogers
A. A. Dodge
Mrs. D. Hewitt
S. W. Rhodes
S. H. Lane
S. T. Belden
Mrs. S. B. Warren
Mrs. Cyrenius Smith
No one should support or fear a false Prophet.