Ellen White Describes the Time of Expectation

August 1844 - 21 October 1844

Ellen White recounts:

This was also the time for the message of the second angel, who, flying through the midst of heaven, cried, "Babylon is fallen, is fallen, that great city." Many left the churches in obedience to the message of the second angel. Near its close the Midnight Cry was given: "Behold, the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet Him"! (1LS, p. 187).

This was "the happiest year of my life," recalled Ellen."My heart was full of glad expectation; but I felt great pity and anxiety for those who were in discouragement and had no hope in Jesus."

Light was being given concerning this message in every part of the land, and the cry aroused thousands. It went from city to city, from village to village, and into the remote country regions. It reached the learned and talented, as well as the obscure and humble (ibid).

In spite of the evidences of a work sweeping across the land and drawing thousands into the fellowship of the Second Advent, and some 200 ministers from various churches united in spreading the message, See C. M. Maxwell, Tell It to the World, pp. 19, 20.* the Protestant churches as a whole spurned it and used every means at their command to prevent the belief in Christ's soon coming from spreading. No one dared to mention in a church service the hope of the soon coming of Jesus, but to those awaiting the event it was quite different. Ellen White described what it was like:

Every moment seemed precious and of the utmost importance to me. I felt that we were doing work for eternity, and that the careless and uninterested were in the greatest peril. My faith was unclouded, and I appropriated the precious promises of Jesus to myself. . . .

With diligent searching of hearts and humble confession we came prayerfully up to the time of expectation. Every morning we felt that it was our first business to secure the evidence that our lives were right before God. We realized that if we were not advancing in holiness we were sure to retrograde. Our interest for each other increased; we prayed much with and for one another.

We assembled in the orchards and groves to commune with God and to offer up our petitions to Him, feeling more clearly His presence when surrounded by His natural works. The joys of salvation were more necessary to us than our food and drink. If clouds obscured our minds we dared not rest or sleep till they were swept away by the consciousness of our acceptance with the Lord (ibid., pp. 188, 189).

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