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Kendrell Holley wrote:

Hi, guys —

I came across your web site while studying for a New Testament Literature class. I am researching the number of the beast, 666, and I have found documentation supporting either Nero or the Pope as the beast.

I did a little research on Ellen White, and found that she did not start the (SDA) Seventh-Day Adventist church. It was actually a merger of three different things. The SDA church actually originated from Seventh Day Baptists. Ellen White (who was actually Ellen Harmon, at the time) was a follower of William Miller. After the "Great Disappointment" and her marriage, she read a book called The Seventh Day Sabbath.

  • How can your statement about the letters of Ellen Gould White adding up to 666 and her being the beast, be correct if your information is, not only incorrect, but the Bible just doesn't say that 666 is the only identifying mark of the beast?


  { How can Mrs. White be the beast if the Bible doesn't say that 666 is the only identifying mark? }

Mike replied:

Hi, Kendrell —

You said:
I did a little research on Ellen White, and found that she did not start the (SDA) Seventh-Day Adventist church. It was actually a merger of three different things.

The following was taken for an article on the Catholic Answers web site: Seventh-Day Adventism:

The Seventh-Day Adventist church traces its roots to American preacher William Miller (1782–1849), a Baptist who predicted the Second Coming would occur between March 21, 1843, and March 21, 1844. Because he and his followers proclaimed Christ's imminent advent, they were known as "Adventists."

When Christ failed to appear, Miller reluctantly endorsed the position of a group of his followers known as the "seventh-month movement," who claimed Christ would return on October 22, 1844 (in the seventh month of the Jewish calendar).

When this didn't happen either, Miller forswore predicting the date of the Second Coming, and his followers broke up into a number of competing factions. Miller would have nothing to do with the new theories his followers produced, including ones which attempted to save part of his 1844 doctrine. He rejected this and other teachings being generated by his former followers, including those of Ellen Gould White.

Miller had claimed, based on his interpretation of Daniel and Revelation, that Christ would return in 1843–44 to cleanse "the sanctuary" (Dan. 8:11–14, 9:26), which he interpreted as the earth. After the disappointments of 1844, several of his followers proposed an alternative theory. While walking in a cornfield on the morning of October 23, 1844, the day after Christ failed to return, Hiram Edson felt he received a spiritual revelation that indicated that Miller had misidentified the sanctuary. It was not the earth, but the Holy of Holies in God's heavenly temple. Instead of coming out of the heavenly temple to cleanse the sanctuary of the earth, in 1844 Christ, for the first time, went into the heavenly Holy of Holies to cleanse it instead.

Another group of Millerites was influenced by Joseph Bates, a retired sea captain, who in 1846 and 1849 issued pamphlets insisting that Christians observe the Jewish Sabbath—Saturday—instead of worshipping on Sunday. This helped feed the intense anti-Catholicism of Seventh-Day Adventism, since they blamed the Catholic Church for changing the day of worship from Saturday to Sunday.

These two streams of thought—Christ entering the heavenly sanctuary and the need to keep the Jewish Sabbath—were combined by White, who claimed to have received many visions confirming these doctrines. Together with Edson and Bates, she formed the Seventh-Day Adventist denomination, which officially received its name in 1860.

So although the seeds of Seventh-Day Adventism did not start with her, it was her theology
(or the Baptism theology of several ministers), along with her "visions" that founded this denomination.

  • Am I splitting hairs?

I will let the reader decide.

RE: Revelation 13:18
Near the end of the Catholic Answers: September 1992 Quick Question, you referred to, it stated:

Ellen=100, Gould=555, White=11. Ask him whether this "proves" that the Foundress of his religion was the beast? If he says "No," then the tallying of the name means nothing. If he says "Yes," then what's he doing belonging to a church founded by the beast?

The point being made was not so much that Ellen Gould White is the beast, but that many people's full name can add up to 666, the sign of the beast, including the false title anti-Catholics give to the Holy Father:

Vicarius Filli Dei or (Vicar of the Son of God), which is not his title;
Vicarius Christi
or (Vicar of Christ), is his chief title.

The fact that anyone's name adds up to 666 is meaningless, and does not necessarily mean any person is designated as the sign of the beast.

My two cents on the issue: I would hold far more credence to the case for Nero being the beast, than anyone else who lived back then.

  • Why?

The Beast persecuted those who did not worship it, as Christians would refuse to do.

  • Did Nero persecute Christians?

Indeed he did. In fact, he executed two of the Apostles — Peter and Paul!

As for that documentation supporting the Pope as the beast, I believe you will find many Protestant ministers and scholars, who say the only place for that documentation is in the waste basket!

All you have to do is read the beautiful encyclicals and holy letters this current Pope
(or any previous Pope) have written, to see how false that documentation is.

Hope this helps,

Mike Humphrey

Please report any and all typos or grammatical errors.
Suggestions for this web page and the web site can be sent to Mike Humphrey
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