Excommunication

   Quotations from the writings of Ellen G. White with the word . . .

                   E  X  C  O  M  M  U  N  I  C  A  T  i  o  n                (  3  RELATED  PHRASES )                           

           The word  'Excommunication'  appears   19  times in the writings of Ellen G. White                         See page on Original website                                                   Related Phrase:    Excommunicate  ( 9 )

That was a terrible crisis for the Reformation. For centuries Rome's sentence of excommunication had struck terror to powerful monarchs; it had filled mighty empires with woe and desolation. Those upon whom its condemnation fell were universally regarded with dread and horror; they were cut off from intercourse with their fellows and treated as outlaws, to be hunted to extermination. Luther was not blind to the tempest about to burst upon him; but he stood firm, trusting in Christ to be his support and shield. With a martyr's faith and courage he wrote: "What is about to happen I know not, nor do I care to know. . . . Let the blow light where it may, I am without fear. Not so much as a leaf falls, without the will of our Father. How much rather will He care for us! It is a light thing to die for the Word, since the Word which was made flesh hath Himself died. If we die with Him, we shall live with Him; and passing through that which He has passed through before us, we shall be where He is and dwell with Him forever." -- Ibid., 3d London ed., Walther, 1840, b. 6, ch. 9.   Great Controversy, page 141.2  (Chapter 7)

   same quote

It was a terrible crisis for the Reformation. For centuries Rome's sentence of excommunication had been swiftly followed by the stroke of death. Luther was not blind to the tempest about to burst upon him, but he stood firm, trusting in Christ to be his support and shield. With a martyr's faith and courage he wrote: "What is about to happen I know not, nor do I care to know. I am assured that He who sits on the throne of Heaven has from all eternity seen the beginning, the progress, and the end of this affair. Let the blow light where it may, I am without fear. Not so much as a leaf falls without the will of our Father. How much rather will he care for us! It is a light thing to die; for the Word which was made flesh hath himself died. If we die with him, we shall live with him; and passing through that which he has passed through before us, we shall be where he is, and dwell with him forever."  {ST, July 26, 1883 par. 5}
 
Wycliffe began to write and publish tracts against the friars, not, however, seeking so much to enter into dispute with them as to call the minds of the people to the teachings of the Bible and its Author. He declared that the power of pardon or of excommunication is possessed by the pope in no greater degree than by common priests, and that no man can be truly excommunicated unless he has first brought upon himself the condemnation of God. In no more effectual way could he have undertaken the overthrow of that mammoth fabric of spiritual and temporal dominion which the pope had erected and in which the souls and bodies of millions were held captive.  Great Controversy, page 84.2

 

The pope had threatened Luther with excommunication if he did not recant, and the threat was now fulfilled. A new bull appeared, declaring the Reformer's final separation from the Roman Church, denouncing him as accursed of Heaven, and including in the same condemnation all who should receive his doctrines. The great contest had been fully entered upon. Great Controversy, page 143.2  (Chapter 7)
 
As the news was circulated at Worms that Luther was to appear before the Diet, a general excitement was created. Aleander, the papal legate to whom the case had been specially entrusted, was alarmed and enraged. He saw that the result would be disastrous to the papal cause. To institute inquiry into a case in which the pope had already pronounced sentence of condemnation would be to cast contempt upon the authority of the sovereign pontiff. Furthermore, he was apprehensive that the eloquent and powerful arguments of this man might turn away many of the princes from the cause of the pope. He therefore, in the most urgent manner, remonstrated with Charles against Luther's appearance at Worms. About this time the bull declaring Luther's excommunication was published; and this, coupled with the representations of the legate, induced the emperor to yield. He wrote to the elector that if Luther would not retract, he must remain at Wittenberg. Great Controversy, page 146.2  ( Chapter 8 )   Bull by Pope Leo X - Jan. 3, 1521

 

His words were not without effect. On the day following Luther's answer, Charles caused a message to be presented to the Diet, announcing his determination to carry out the policy of his predecessors to maintain and protect the Catholic religion. Since Luther had refused to renounce his errors, the most vigorous measures should be employed against him and the heresies he taught. "A single monk, misled by his own folly, has risen against the faith of Christendom. To stay such impiety, I will sacrifice my kingdoms, my treasures, my friends, my body, my blood, my soul, and my life. I am about to dismiss the Augustine Luther, forbidding him to cause the least disorder among the people; I shall then proceed against him and his adherents as contumacious heretics, by excommunication, by interdict, and by every means calculated to destroy them. I call on the members of the states to behave like faithful Christians."--Ibid., b. 7, ch. 9. Nevertheless the emperor declared that Luther's safe-conduct must be respected, and that before proceedings against him could be instituted, he must be allowed to reach his home in safety.  Great Controversy, page 162.3  (Chapter 8)
 
But Luther proceeded to publicly burn the pope's bull, with the canon laws, the decretals, and certain writings sustaining the papal power. By this action he boldly declared his final separation from the Roman Church. He accepted his excommunication, and proclaimed to the world that between himself and the pope there must hereafter be war. The great contest was now fully entered upon. Soon after, a new bull appeared, and the excommunication which had before been threatened, was finally pronounced against the Reformer and all who should receive his doctrines.  {4SP 118.2}

 

Those who have differed from the established doctrines have been imprisoned, put to torture and to death, because the dignitaries of the church could not endure those who dissented from ideas which these leaders deemed to be true. Satan himself is the sower of tares; but even though he he is the sower of them, they are not to be rooted up, lest by chance the wheat be rooted up with them. Let both grow together until the harvest; and the harvest is the end of probationary time. Fiendish zeal has been manifested in excluding dissenters from the fellowship of the church, and passing upon them the sentence of excommunication by which the Roman Church asserted its power of excluding them from all possibility of entering heaven.  {RH, January 10, 1893 par. 9}
 
His next step was to publicly burn the pope's bull, with the canon laws, the decretals, and certain writings sustaining the papal power. By this action he boldly declared his final separation from the Roman Church. He accepted his excommunication, and proclaimed to the world that between himself and the pope there must hereafter be war. The great contest was now fully entered upon.  {ST, July 26, 1883 par. 11}
 
At this time the pope issued a new bull, and the excommunication which had before been threatened was decidedly pronounced against the Reformer and all who received his doctrines. Thus was broken the last tie that bound Luther to Rome. - {ST, August 2, 1883 par. 19}

 

 

 

                                               Return to  Phrases related to The Pope  page

                                              Return to Selected Quotations by EGW page

Related Information

Excommunicate