W.C. White on the Holy Spirit

Posted Aug 09, 2010 by Corey McCain in The Spirit of God Hits: 3,700

"Dear Elder White, ….It is urged by some of our leaders now that the Holy Spirit is a third person of the same nature of the Father and Son, a member of the heavenly trio, co-operative in creation and personally active with the Father and Son. For many years I have used these statements of Sister White in combating false teachings relative to defining the Holy Spirit.

Will you kindly tell me what you understand was your mothers position in reference to the personality of the Holy Spirit…

I know Brother White you would not depart from your mother's teachings, and that you have as perfect an understanding of them as any one. I shall appreciate your opinion very much. Assuring you of the high esteem and respect I have had from my childhood in your father, mother and family. I am very truly yours in this blessed faith.



Letter to W C White from H W Carr. Jan 24. 1935.

Brother White replied saying,



Dear Brother Carr, I hold in my hand your letter of January 24… In your letter you request me to tell you what I understand to be my mother's position in reference to the personality of the Holy Spirit.

This I cannot do because I never clearly understood her teachings on the matter. There always was in my mind some perplexity regarding the meaning of her utterances which to my superficial manner of thinking seemed to be somewhat confusing.

I have often regretted that I did not possess that keenness of mind that could solve this and similar perplexities, and then remembering what Sister White wrote in Acts of the Apostles pages 51 and 52, regarding such mysteries which are too deep for human understanding, "silence is golden", I have thought best to refrain from discussion and have endeavoured to direct my mind to matters easy to be understood.

As I read the Bible, I find that the risen Saviour breathed on the disciples (John 20:22) "and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost". The conception received from this Scripture, seems to be in harmony with the statement in Desire of Ages page 669, also Genesis 1:2; with Luke 1:4; with Acts 2:4 and also 8:15 and 10:44. Many other texts might be referred to which seem to be in harmony with this statement in Desire of Ages. 

"The statement and the arguments of some of our ministers in their effort to prove that the Holy Spirit was an individual as are God the Father and Christ, the eternal Son, have perplexed me and sometimes they have made me sad. One popular teacher said we may regard Him (the Holy Spirit) as the fellow who is down here running things.


My perplexities were lessened a little when I learned from the dictionary that one of the meanings of personality was characteristics. It is stated in such a way that I concluded that there might be personality without bodily form which is possessed by the Father and the Son.

There are many Scriptures which speak of the Father and the Son and the absence of Scripture making similar reference to the united work of the Father and the Holy Spirit or of Christ and the Holy Spirit, has led me to believe that the Spirit without individuality was the representative of the Father and the Son throughout the universe, and it was through the Holy Spirit that they dwell in our hearts and make us one with the Father and with the Son...  With kind regards, I remain sincerely your brother."

Letter from W C White to H W Carr. April 30 1935.


Should W.C. White's words have importance?

After this experience, light was given me that the Lord had raised me up to bear testimony for Him in many countries, and that He would give me grace and strength for the work. It was also shown me that my son, W. C. White, should be my helper and counselor, and that the Lord would place on him the spirit of wisdom and of a sound mind. I was shown that the Lord would guide him, and that he would not be led away, because he would recognize the leadings and guidance of the Holy Spirit. {1SM 54.3}

The assurance was given me: "You are not alone in the work the Lord has chosen you to do. You will be taught of God how to bring the truth in its simplicity before the people. The God of truth will sustain you, and convincing proof will be given that He is leading you. God will give you of His Holy Spirit, and His grace and wisdom and keeping power will be with you. . . .

"The Lord will be your instructor. You will meet with deceptive influences; they will come in many forms, in pantheism and other forms of infidelity; but follow where I shall guide you, and you will be safe. I will put My Spirit upon your son, and will strengthen him to do his work. He has the grace of humility. The Lord has selected him to act an important part in His work. For this purpose was he born." {1SM 55.1}

This word was given me in 1882, and since that time I have been assured that the grace of wisdom was given to him. More recently, in a time of perplexity, the Lord said: "I have given you My servant, W. C. White, and I will give him judgment to be your helper. I will give him skill and understanding to manage wisely." {1SM 55.2}