In Co-operation With the Three Highest Powers
We are to co-operate with the three highest powers in heaven – the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost – and these powers will work through us, making us workers together with God.
- Special Testimonies Series B. No.7 p51, 1905; Evangelism p. 617
The above quotation is from a letter of rebuke to Dr Kellogg. Here is the context of the writing and more of it's meaning will be revealed.
“The time will come when I must speak much more plainly, and warn our brethren in plain tones not to be led astray with the false theories of ‘Living Temple’. I have been shown the seductive nature of the sentiments it contains, and that which has been declared over and over again, I need not repeat. These representations are said to be in harmony with the sentiments in Sister White’s published works. Those who make statements such as this are doing my books great injustice. Let all bear in mind that statements from my books may be taken out of their setting, and placed in such connection as to make it appear that the sentiments in ‘Living Temple’ are sustained by Sister White’s very words….Men are to discharge their duty to God. They are to have reverence for, and a knowledge of, a personal God…. He loves us, that He gave us a tangible proof of His love, by sending His only begotten Son to bear the sin of the world, that whosever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life…. If we come into close relation with Christ, we shall have a part to act in carrying forward the work of present truth for this time. We are to cooperate with the three highest powers in heaven – the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost – and these powers will work through us, making us workers together with God….”
- Special Testimonies Series B No.7, p. 49, 50, 51
The three highest powers in heaven are not here defined in the above misquote from the book Evangelism, but merely listed. There is no question that there are three powers in heaven (Father, Son and the Holy Ghost), but this statement tells us nothing more than that. Does this statement tell us what the relationship between these three powers is? To use this statement to prove a trinity of 3 co-equal, co-eternal beings would be poor scholarly work and dishonest.
The three great powers can be correctly understood in light of what Ellen White means. She clearly understood and taught that there is a Father, and a Son and a Holy Spirit. That makes three. But it is the relation of those three that is further clarified in other parts of her writings. For example, it is clearly stated that God is the Father of Christ:
“God is the Father of Christ; Christ is the Son of God. To Christ has been given an exalted position. He has been made equal with the Father. All the counsels of God are opened to His Son.”
- Testimonies for the Church, vol. 8, p. 268
Elsewhere she explains the relation with the Spirit, it being the spirit of Christ:
"Those who believe the truth should remember that they are God’s little children, that they are under His training. Let them be thankful to God for His manifold mercies and be kind to one another. They have one God and one Saviour; and one Spirit – the Spirit of Christ – is to bring unity into their ranks." - Testimonies for the Church, vol. 9, p. 189
She tells us clearly the spirit of Christ is the soul of His life. It is the very life of His own life.
“Christ declared that after his ascension, he would send to his church, as his crowning gift, the Comforter, who was to take his place. This Comforter is the Holy Spirit,--the soul of his life, the efficacy of his church, the light and life of the world. With his Spirit Christ sends a reconciling influence and a power that takes away sin.” - Review and Herald, May 19, 1904, par. 1
“Christ gives them the breath of His own spirit, the life of His own life. The Holy Spirit puts forth its highest energies to work in heart and mind.” - The Desire of Ages, p. 827
“In that day,” Jesus said, “you shall know that I am in the Father, and the Father in me, and I in you.” John 14:20
The breath of Christ is His spirit and life.
"And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost."
It is in no way talking about another individual being. This is the correct and consistent under-standing of “the three highest powers in heaven”. The Father, Son and Holy Spirit.