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Seventh-Day Adventists/Ellen White and the Investigative Judgment


Dear Patricia:

I have heard some SDAs such as Tom Norris state that Ellen White didn't support the Investigative Judgment. I was under the impression that she did support the Investigative Judgment. What is your thoughts on whether or not Ellen White supported the Investigative Judgment?


Hello Mary,

Thank you so much for your question regarding Ellen White and the Investigative Judgment (IJ).

Following are quotes from Ellen White explaining the Investigative Judgment's intent and Christ's INCOMPLETE atonement on the Cross. From these quotes, you can see that she definitely supported it:

"Attended by heavenly angels, our great High Priest enters the holy of holies, and there appears in the presence of God, to engage in the last acts of His ministration in behalf of man - to perform the work of investigative judgment, and to make an atonement for all who are shown to be entitled to its benefits ....So in the great day of final atonement and investigative judgment, the only cases considered are those of the professed people of God. The judgment of the wicked is a distinct and separate work, at a later period" (The Great Controversy, 1950 edition, page 480).

"As the books of record are opened in the judgment, the lives of all who have believed on Jesus come in review before God. Beginning with those who first lived upon the earth, our Advocate presents the cases of each successive generation, and closes with the living. Every name is mentioned, every case closely investigated. Names are accepted, names rejected". (The Great Controversy, 1950 edition, page 483). "At the time appointed for the judgment –the close of the 2300 days, in 1844– began the work of investigation and blotting out of sins . All who have ever taken upon themselves the name of Christ must pass its searching scrutiny. Both the living and the dead are judged 'out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works ". (The Great Controversy, 1950 edition, page 486).

"Though all nations are to pass in judgment before God, yet He will examine the cases of each individual with as close and searching scrutiny as if there were not another being upon the earth. Every one must be tested, and found without spot or wrinkle or any such thing". (The Great Controversy, 1950 edition, page 490).

"The Judgment is now passing in the sanctuary above. Forty years has this work been in progress. Soon – none know how soon  – it will pass to the cases of the living." (The Great Controversy, 1884 edition, page 315).

Her teaching blatantly contradicts the Word of God. When Christ said, "It is finished" she disagrees by saying that there's unfinished business yet to be done. She says....

"This work of examination of character, of determining who are prepared for the kingdom of God, is that of the investigative judgment" (The Great Controversy (p. 489, 1939 Ed.) (p. 428, p.1950 Ed.)

As God, Who is Omniscient, He has ALWAYS known whose are His and He doesn't need the IJ for any purpose.

She also said:  "...In 1844 Christ then entered the most holy place of the heavenly sanctuary, to perform the closing work of atonement, preparatory to His coming" (The Great Controversy, page 481); ". . . To make an atonement for all who are shown to be entitled to its benefits" (Ibid., page 456).

I'm sure you know that a person can search the Bible high and low and will not find one Bible text that tells us that Jesus entered the "Most Holy" in 1844 or that his atonement was only for those "entitled to its benefits." When He ascended to heaven, He sat down on the right hand of the Father after having completed a finished work.

The false doctrine of the Investigative Judgment has been the most controversial and debated doctrine within the SDA Church since it's invention . Ellen White put her visionary stamp of approval on the doctrine, and the SDA church cannot discard this doctrine without admitting Ellen G. White was a false prophet. They are stuck with it.

LeRoy Froom, an Adventist leader, wrote that if the SDA church didn't have the Investigative Judgment message that, "One (the SDA church) would have no justifiable place in the religious world, no distinctive denominational mission and message, no excuse for functioning as a separate church entity today." Movement of Destiny, p. 542.

In summary, the Investigative Judgment is a false foundational doctrine of the Seventh-day Adventist church invented by the early church fathers to cover their embarrassment when Jesus did not return when they predicted He would in 1844. In essence, the doctrine teaches that Jesus is not omniscient because He needs to examine books to tell Him who is entitled to inherit salvation. By the way, no one is entitled!

Since people don't know when Jesus is going to examine their name and make a decision, they live in constant fear and uncertainty of their salvation.

Jesus says, "My sheep listen to my voice; I know them , and they follow me." John 10:27

I hope this answer has been somewhat helpful. Blessings!

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Patricia Allen


As a former Seventh-day Adventist (SDA), I have insight of value to those who are questioning and/or trying to decide if they should leave or become an SDA. It would be my privilege to discuss SDA church doctrine, structure, Ellen White, the old and new covenants, and their various beliefs. The Bible will be my main source of reference and all quotes, etc. will be documented. I understand that there are different variants of Adventists, but I am only familiar with what I would call traditional or main stream.


I was a Seventh-day Adventist for over 50 years. I attended their schools and I was always active in the churches I attended. I also worked for the denomination for 37 years. Since I was educated in their schools from Grade 1, and because what I was taught came from the Bible, I never questioned my beliefs. I considered myself as one whom the Lord had chosen to bring out of darkness into His marvelous light. In the year 2005, I became keenly aware that Ellen White contradicted the Scriptures numerous times and plagiarized some of her most popular writings. At this point, I had to seriously consider studying for myself with the aid of the Holy Spirit to see if indeed I really had the truth. Sad to say, I discovered that I was deluded and deliberately deceived by the church I loved and served. In 2010, I requested that my name be withdrawn from the membership roster of the church. Since then, it has been my passion to tell those in the SDA church and those considering joining Adventism, the truth and freedom that I have discovered and enjoy daily. I interact on Facebook with SDAs frequently regarding their beliefs and doctrines compared to the Bible. In addition to answering questions on this site, I have a blog ( and the purpose of my articles is to expose the false doctrines of the SDA church After 50 plus years of trying to 'work' my way, I have discovered the sweet rest in the finished work of my Savior. I've also discovered that there is nothing that I have ever done to make Jesus love me less and there is nothing that I can ever do to make Jesus love me more. Jesus just loves me and this I know!

M.A.O.M. degree (Master of Arts in Organizational Management). I also have a B.A.I.C. degree (Born Again in Christ). My calling is to help spread the Good News of the Gospel and to help lift the veil by sharing Jesus, Who is the Truth and the Light.

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