|A. T. Jones and E. J.
Waggoner brought new emphasis and a clearer understanding to the
doctrine of justification by faith. Some of the older ministers and
laymen objected, feeling that grace was being asserted at the expense of
One of these famous "debates"
had to do with the book of Galatians. In addition to articles in church
publications, two books were printed, "The Law in the Book of
Galatians" by George I. Butler (1886), and "The Gospel in the
Book of Galatians" by Ellet J. Waggoner (1888).
On April 13, 1886 O. A. Johnson wrote
an article in the Review entitled "The Two Laws,"
claiming that the law in Galatians included the ceremonial law.
E. J. Waggoner answered with a series
of nine articles in The Signs of the Times (July 8-September 2,
1886) claiming that the law referred to in the book of Galatians was the
On February 18, 1887 Ellen G. White
wrote from Basel, Switzerland to the editor (Waggoner) of The Signs
of the Times, questioning them for airing denominational differences
before the public. She stood with neither side in the debate. (See
letter 37, 1887; Counsels to Writers and Editors, pp. 75-80).
Following her counsel, E. J. Waggoner
waited until 1888 to publish his book, "The Gospel in
Galatians" in which he stated his views on the subject.
We present these two books together in
an attempt to accurately present the history and issues surrounding the
Minneapolis Conference of 1888.