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Ellen White als Gottesdienst Führungspersönlichkeit Dr. Ella Smith Simmons General Vice President General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists SEPTEMBER.

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Presentation on theme: "Ellen White als Gottesdienst Führungspersönlichkeit Dr. Ella Smith Simmons General Vice President General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists SEPTEMBER."— Presentation transcript:


2 Ellen White als Gottesdienst Führungspersönlichkeit Dr. Ella Smith Simmons General Vice President General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists SEPTEMBER 21, 2012 2

3 “Some day there will be a king who rules with integrity, and national leaders who govern with justice. Each of them will be like a shelter from the wind and a place to hide from storms. They will be like streams flowing in the desert, like the shadow of a giant rock in a barren land. Their eyes and ears will be open to the needs of the people. They will not be impatient any longer but will act with understanding and will say what they mean.” Isaiah 32:1-4 GNB REIGN OF RIGHTEOUSNESS 3

4 ELLEN WHITE GOULD HARMON 4 circa 1878 circa 1859

5 Ellen White was born into a family in which the deeper values of life took priority over social standing. Simplicity accurately describes the person. She was humble. Simple dignity is the combination that depicts her character and personality. She had a tranquil outlook on life. She was mentally vigorous—dynamic, spirited, enthusiastic. Noorbergen, 1972 ELLEN WHITE THE WOMAN 5

6 “She is remembered as “a quiet, kindhearted grandmother who was always full of love.” She had a sense of humor and “ was always able to laugh and enjoy the happy things of life.” * Willie White’s pulpit nap “She had the ability to put people at ease” in her presence. ELLEN WHITE THE WOMAN 6

7 In her early years following the event that left her disfigured and physically weak for a long while she experienced lonelinessheartbreak doubtdespair perplexityagony of mind Noorbergen, 1972 ELLEN WHITE THE WOMAN 7

8 My feelings were unusually sensitive and caused me great unhappiness. Often with wounded pride, mortified and wretched in spirit, I sought a lonely place and gloomily pondered over the trials I was doomed daily to bear. (1T 12) I often felt that it would greatly relieve me to weep away my sorrow. Sometimes the kindly sympathy of friends banished my gloom and removed, for a time, the leaden weight that oppressed my heart. ELLEN WHITE THE WOMAN 8

9 New Found Strength from Faith In her illness and subsequent rejection by peers Ellen became more alert to and dependent upon spirituality that guided her to God. In later years she looked back on her ninth year with an odd mixture of emotions It terminated one phase of her life. It introduced her to what was to come. This spiritual journey began with two dreams at age 14. Noorbergen, 172 ELLEN WHITE THE WOMAN 9

10 It was at this time that she changed her view of God as demanding and stern. She came to understand God as a kind and tender parent. This early discovery became an encompassing theme in her life and in her writings. The Scriptures were the lens through which Ellen White viewed theology and from which her worldview emerged. Tutsch, 2008 ELLEN WHITE THE WOMAN 10

11 Perhaps the loss of Henry in 1863, tightened the family bonds among the remaining members of the White family. Edson (on the right) was now the oldest son, turning 16 in 1865. William, or "Willie," as he was affectionately called by family and friends, was five years younger. White Estate THE WHITE FAMILY CIRCA 1865 11

12 For seventy years, from the age of seventeen until her death at eighty-seven, Ellen White (1827-1915) was actively involved in initiating, shaping, and developing the Seventh-day Adventist Church. The Adventist community recognized and accepted her as one manifesting a genuine prophetic gift. Valentine, 2011 ELLEN WHITE’S ROLE IN THE CHURCH 12

13 The Seventh-day Adventist Church holds that the writings of Ellen White pass the Biblical tests for the Gift of Prophecy. The Church officially holds that her writings are authoritative and that her writings are subordinate to the Bible. ELLEN WHITE’S ROLE IN THE CHURCH 13

14 1.A true prophet does not lie. Her/his predictions will be fulfilled (Jer. 28:9) 2.A true prophet prophecies in the name of the Lord, not in her/his own name. (II Pet. 1:21) 3.A true prophet does not give her/his own private interpretation of prophecy. (II Pet 1:20) 4.A true prophet points out the sins and transgressions of the people against God. (Isa. 58:1) 5.A true prophet is to warn the people of God’s coming judgment. (Isa 24:20, 21; Rev. 14:6, 7) TEST FOR THE GIFT OF PROPHECY 14

15 6.A true prophet edifies the church, counsels and advises it in religious matters. (I Cor. 14:3, 4) 7.A true prophet’s words will be in absolute harmony with the words of the prophets that have preceded her/him. (Isa. 8:20) 8.A true prophet recognizes the incarnation of Jesus Christ. (I John 4:1-3) 9.A true prophet can be recognized by the results of her/his work. (Matt. 7:16-20) Noorbergen, 1972 TEST FOR THE GIFT OF PROPHECY 15

16 She relied on and taught the certainty of Scripture. This was/is evident in her writings and speaking. She held that the Bible explained itself—its meanings and intents. She offered the “Word of God” as the rule of faith and practice. Tutsch, 2008 ELLEN WHITE’S ROLE IN THE CHURCH 16

17 The Bible portrays Israel’s leaders going to the prophets for advice. It depicts the prophets going to the leaders to give counsel from God and even to rebuke them when necessary. A study of Adventist history reveals the same patterns. “Ellen White, in her role of God’s ‘messenger,’ was in regular contact with the denominational leaders as they sought to guide Adventism according to God’s will.” Knight in Valentine, 2011 ELLEN WHITE’S ROLE IN THE CHURCH 17

18 She said her work included much more than the word “prophet” signifies. She communicates messages from God for edification, encouragement, and consolation of the Church. Early Adventists recognized Ellen White as having theological authority. Today the Church continues to value her guidance in understanding the teachings of Scripture and application of those teachings. Tutsch, 2008 ELLEN WHITE’S ROLE IN THE CHURCH 18

19 Ellen White referred to herself as “God’s messenger.” Seventh-day Adventists consider her to be a divinely appointed spokesperson for God, in the same way that Old and New Testament prophets were appointed as God’s messengers. Some have characterized her work as “forth-telling.” In the Old Testament – signifies one who spoke for God and interpreted God’s will. Valentine, 2011; Tutsch, 2008 MESSENGER 19

20 Early in her role she counseled to nurture and unify a disappointed and fragmented group of believers. She played a pivotal role in the group through her practical public and private counsel. Further, she led and counseled a large segment of the religious world (general population) of her time into a deeper spiritual and social awareness. Valentine, 2011; Noorbergen, 1972 COUNSELOR 20

21 But she did more than give religious counseling. She was a guide on spiritual matters aiding deeper understanding of the Bible and prophecies in general. She gave guidance on medical and nutritional matters from her special insights that were gained through more than two thousand visions and prophetic dreams that provided her with a knowledge that was in many cases more than a hundred years ahead of her time. She forecasts the events of the end times and also points the way to escape from the final tragedy humanity is preparing for itself. Valentine, 2011; Tutsch, 2008 GUIDE 21

22 “Ellen White saw her role to include correction of error and to open the ‘scriptures to others as God has opened them to her.’” She said, “I have a work of great responsibility to do— to impart by pen and voice the instruction given me, not alone to Seventh-day Adventists, but to the world.” She was a problem solver on many fronts. Tutsch, 2008; Noorbergen, 1972 SPIRITUAL TEACHER 22

23 It was unusual for 19 th century women to be photographed with pen in hand as Ellen White is shown here. It portrays her as a professional and writer. She was in her late 30s here. 1864, from White Estate ELLEN WHITE THE PROPHET 23

24 “She was not an astrologer, seer or mystic. Ellen G. White drew her prophecies from the true source of revelation—divine inspiration,...” She described scenes shown to her while in vision. However, she did not boast of being a prophet, but rather referred to herself merely as God’s messenger. PROPHET 24

25 “Early in my public labors I was bidden by the Lord, ‘Write, write the things that are revealed to you.’” At the time this message came to me I could not hold my hand steady. My physical condition made it impossible for me to write. But again came the word, ‘Write things that are revealed to you,’ I obeyed; and as the result it was not long before I could write page after page with comparative ease. Who told me what to write? Who steadied my right hand and made it possible for me to use a pen? It was the Lord.” WRITING WHAT I HAVE SEEN 25

26 “ The words I employ in writing what I have seen are my own, unless they be those spoken to me by an angel, which I always enclose in marks of quotation.” The visions enlightened her mind; she then in turn transposed those mental impressions into words—and she took her task seriously. Noorbergen, 1972; Tutsch, 2008 WRITING WHAT I HAVE SEEN 26



29 Ellen White's leadership worldview emerges from the scriptural frame of reference described in Philippians 2:5-8. Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross.” (NKJV) Tutsch, 2008 ELLEN WHITE'S LEADERSHIP WORLDVIEW 29

30 Knowing God was the goal of Ellen White's life, and the focus of her leadership counsels. The framework upon which her leadership counsels are based is the “depths of the love of God” as demonstrated at Calvary. “For her, no true leadership exists without knowledge of God --as being imparted chiefly through the agency of the Holy Spirit.” Tutsch, 2008 FOCUS OF ELLEN WHITE’S LEADERSHIP COUNSELS 30

31 Leadership is far more than “wearing” a title or “filling” a position. Challenges are many: fear of losing the position that stifles wisdom and action stagnation and decline in spiritual life discouraging investigation and discussion of new scriptural truth losing sight of and relationship with Jesus and His grace, and thus losing the desire to emulate His methods believing in human reasoning and aspirations loss of a selfless, sacrificing, spirit for service; temptation toward being served Tutsch, 2008 THE LEADER’S CHALLENGE 31

32 1.Pride 2.Sexual sin 3.Cynicism 4.Greed 5.Mental laziness 6.Oversensitivity 7.Spiritual lethargy 8.Domestic neglect 9.Administrative carelessness 10.Prolonged position holding Blackaby & Blackaby, 2001 Ten Pitfalls of Leadership 32 THE LEADER’S CHALLENGE

33 Today we face the age-old challenge by the claims of Gnosticism: that we are creatures of two worlds— matter and mind  matter being the source of evil  mind the source of what is rational and good 33

34 THE LEADER’S CHALLENGE Today the claims of our being creatures of two worlds focus more on a natural and spiritual dichotomy. The claims are that humans are divided by or between the secular and the sacred. Organizationally – the world and the church 34

35 THE LEADER’S CHALLENGE Malik observes that “we always have in the womb of history and in the heart of man Christ and Antichrist contending. What a mystery!” The Great Controversy Malik, 1987

36 THE LEADER’S CHALLENGE 36 This is largely the root of the tension between faith and culture—the “secular world.” Is there a difference in leadership? Paradox: Concurrent with the church’s discovery of popular (secular) axioms or proverbs on leadership, secular writers have been discovering the timeless truths of Christianity. Blackaby & Blacaby, 2001

37 Research reports more than 850 different definitions of leadership. Most do not relate to God and His purposes. The greatest want of the world is the want of men/women who will not be bought or sold; who in their inmost souls are true and honest; who do not fear to call sin by its right name; whose conscience is as true to duty as the needle to the pole; who will stand for the right though the heavens fall.— (Education, 57) White, 1903; Bennis & Nanus, 1997 THE LEADER’S ROLE 37

38 Leadership requires the closest attention, care, and mental labor. It requires the exercise of sound judgment and wisdom. It requires self-denial, a whole heart, and a firm will. In that important position God will have a leader to venture, to risk something; to move out firmly for the right, whatever may be the consequences; to battle against obstacles, and waver not, even though life be at stake. ( 1T320) THE LEADER’S ROLE 38

39 “For Ellen White, one essential qualifier for leadership is a living connection with Jesus Christ that results in total obedience to His will.” (5T423) The Holy Spirit is essential in the leader’s walk. She asserts that a true leader is the recipient of the Holy Spirit and responds to the grace of God in his or her life. She says that the human heart must be “submitted to be molded by the Spirit of God. (RH, 1896) Tutsch, 2008 THE LEADER’S PREPARATION 39

40 Holy Spirit The leader must Be empowered by the Holy Spirit Receive a spirit of team work from the Holy Spirit Hear the voice of God through the Holy Spirit Exercise humility as a prerequisite to the Spirit’s blessing Have his or her call qualified by the Holy Spirit Tutsch, 2008 THE LEADER’S PREPARATION 40

41 Prayer—Much Prayer For the leader Power and strength come from prayer. Wisdom comes from prayer. A quick mind, large heart, and tender spirit come from prayer. Personal prayer is preparation for corporate and intercessory prayer with and for colleagues/followers. Tutsch, 2008 THE LEADER’S PREPARATION 41

42 Character Development For the leader Integrity and character development are predicated on time with God Both blessings and challenges call for dependence on God. Care for the poor develops character. Obedience and trust in God develop character. Wisdom is a higher priority than wealth, power, or fame. Tutsch, 2008 THE LEADER’S PREPARATION 42

43 Ellen White ascribed to the servant leader model, after Christ’s life example. The leader combines God’s strength and wisdom with humble diligence, yet does not flaunt humility. The leader is self-sacrificing and diligent. The leader is nurturing and empowering of others. The leader is respectful and compassionate, yet strong. The leader is not dictatorial, but decisive and courageous. The leader is converted, is under the converting power of God. Tutsch, 2008 THE LEADER’S CHARACTER 43

44 The leader exemplifies Moral integrity founded on God’s law Impartiality, dignity, sound judgment, and tenacity Intelligence and independent thinking (yet open to input) An even temper, self-control, tenderness, and security Openness to learning from mistakes, a teachable spirit A positive perspective, faith, hope, and love A missionary spirit, a passion for saving souls; an intolerance for injustice Tutsch, 2008 THE LEADER’S CHARACTER 44

45 “Experiential knowledge of God was central to Ellen White’s philosophy of leadership.” The presence of the Holy Spirit and trust in God overcome Secularism Consumerism Love of power Desire for prestige and recognition THE LEADER’S PREPARATION 45

46 For Ellen White leadership begins with a call from God. It requires a discovery of one’s gifts and talents— strengths. She patterns her leadership model on the life of Christ. It relies on trust in God; God’s will becomes the leaders will. (The leader takes on God’s will.) She says leaders must understand the great controversy and keep it ever in mind—worldview. THE LEADER’S PREPARATION 46

47 Innate qualities Life experiences - home life - failures - crises - personal struggles - hardship Blackaby & Blackaby, 2001 THE MAKING OF A LEADER 47

48 Spiritual ends require spiritual means, and spiritual means come only by the Holy Spirit. Not by might, nor by power, but by My Spirit, says the Lord of hosts. Zechariah 4:6 Linking One’s Self With Holy Spirit Means Success.— The success of the ministry of Elijah was not due to any inherited qualities he possessed, but to the submission of himself to the Holy Spirit, which was given to him as it will be given to all who exercise living faith in God. (MS 148) Blackaby & Blackaby, 2011 THE MAKING OF A LEADER 48

49 1.Sovereign foundations – God’s activity during formative years: love, birth order, illness, prosperity or poverty... 2.Inner life growth – conversion and development of character and spiritual life 3.Ministry maturing – earliest attempts at spiritual leadership: volunteering, sharing faith, skill development 4.Life maturing – focusing on strength and leadership opportunities that match; God works through the leader. 5.Convergence – ministry and life experiences merge 6.Afterglow or celebration – after success, reflecting, teaching others Blackaby & Blackaby, 2001 THE MAKING OF A LEADER 49

50 Ellen White asserts that the vision must come from God. Specific direction comes from the Holy Spirit. Prayer and often fasting are essential for visioning. Expansive visioning includes others; shuns uniformity. In ancient times God spoke to men by the mouth of prophets and apostles. In these days He speaks to them by the testimonies of His Spirit. There was never a time when God instructed His people more earnestly than He instructs them now concerning His will and the course that He would have them pursue." (FLB 296) White, 1958 THE LEADER’S VISION 50

51 Ellen White is clear that the leader’s vision and agenda come from God and are Spirit-led. “This does not authorize any one man to undertake the work of ordering his brethren arbitrarily to do as he thinks advisable, irrespective of their own personal convictions of duty. Nor are God’s chosen laborers to feel that at every step they must wait to ask some officer in authority whether they may do this or that. While cooperating heartily with their brethren in carrying out general plans that have been laid for the prosecution of the work, they are constantly to look to the God of Israel for personal guidance.” (TM491) Yet she says we should be in harmony. Tutsch, 2008 THE LEADER’S VISION FROM WHERE? 51

52 The world functions by vision. God’s people live by revelation. Pray to God. Commune with Him. Prove the very mind of God, as those who are striving for eternal life, and who must have a knowledge of His will. You can reveal the truth only as you know it in Christ. You are to live by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God; that is, what God has revealed. (CH 371) THE LEADER’S VISION FROM WHERE? 52

53 Ellen White understood the leader’s goal to be moving people onto God’s agenda, to where God wants them to be. Bringing glory and honor to God Reflecting the glory of God Achieving spiritual maturity—self, others, organization Achieving God’s purpose for the time Blackaby & Blackaby, 2011; Tutsch, 2008; Noorbergen, 1972 THE LEADER’S GOAL 53

54 The greatness of an organization will be directly proportional to the greatness of its leader. It is rare for organizations to rise above their leaders. Leadership involves specific skills, but ultimately leadership is more about “being” than about “doing.” Blackaby & Blackaby, 2001 THE LEADER’S INFLUENCE 54

55 “Ellen White encourages the Spirit-led leader to build a relationship with his or her followers based on shared purpose, values, and vision and to encourage dialogue and dissent as authentic steps to change.” She encouraged leaders to pray for those they influence and inform them of those prayers. After a person has nothing more to do with anything under the sun, the example he or she has set, the golden words he or she has spoken, live through time and through all eternity. This influence which was after the divine pattern never dies. That life has been connected with God. Tutsch, 2008 THE LEADER’S INFLUENCE 55

56 Illegitimate Sources of Influence Position Power Personality Blackaby & Blackaby, 2001 THE LEADER’S INFLUENCE 56

57 Legitimate Sources of Influence God’s authentication Encounters with God Character/Integrity A successful track record Preparation Blackaby & Blackaby, 2001 THE LEADER’S INFLUENCE 57

58 Ellen White says, “Industry in a God-appointed duty is an important part of religion... Prompt and decisive action at the right time will gain glorious triumphs, while delay and neglect result in a failure and dishonor to God.” She says, “If the leaders in the cause of the truth show no zeal, if they are indifferent and purposeless, the church will be careless, indolent, and pleasure-loving; but if they are filled with a holy purpose to serve God and Him alone, the people will be united, hopeful, eager.” (PK676) Tutsch, 2008 THE LEADER’S DECISION MAKING 58

59 Prompt and decisive action brings success; seize the day. The leader must venture out and take risks. “I have been shown that the most signal victories and the most fearful defeats have been on the turn of minutes. Delays, doubting, hesitation, and indecision frequently give the enemy every advantage. Rapid movements at the critical moment often disarm the enemy…” (TM201) Yet, she disdains rash, hasty, impulsive moves. She says they dishonor God. Tutsch, 2008 THE LEADER’S DECISION MAKING 59

60 Ellen White maintained that leaders must take time for careful, continual, and deep study of the Scriptures To seek a deeper relationship and commitment to God To find truth and wisdom She felt it imperative that leaders of integrity schedule time for daily communion with God. She counseled leaders to take time for rest and recreation. THE LEADER’S SCHEDULE 60

61 WHY LEADERS SHOULD PRAY 1.Prayer is an essential leadership activity. 2.Prayer brings the Spirit’s filling. 3.Prayer brings God’s wisdom. 4.Prayer accesses God’s power. 5.Prayer relieves stress. 6.Prayer reveals God’s agenda. THE LEADER’S SCHEDULE 61

62 Cindy Tutsch categorizes Ellen White’s theory of leadership as progressive, because She promoted a fresh approach to old truths. She empowered an inclusive church. She condemned as conservative those who refused to examine new understandings of Scripture. ELLEN WHITE’S LEADERSHIP 62

63 She promoted creativity, appropriate conflict, humanizing interaction with workers, and distributed leadership. She extolled Biblical values such as spirit, love, empowerment, trust, grace, humility, and forgiveness. ELLEN WHITE’S LEADERSHIP 63

64 “Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also; and greater works than these he will do, because I go to My Father. And whatever you ask in My name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask anything in My name, I will do it. The Lord has a use for His people, and He is well pleased when they make the very highest demands upon Him, that they may glorify His name. They may expect large things if they have faith in His promises. (DA 668) White, 1898 LEADERSHIP PROMISE 64

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