KidsView  | The Adventist Review for kids and those who always will be kids at heart | July 2016

The Trick That Didn't Work

By Chantal Klingbeil

Mr. Sargent and Mr. Robbins were a bit of a problem. These two self-appointed preachers were teaching some strange things that confused and discouraged the Adventist believers in Boston. Some of the believers heard that young Ellen Harmon had received some encouraging messages from God, and so they asked her to come and speak to the group. 

Sargent and Robbins also heard that Ellen Harmon was coming, and they decided that she needed to be kept away from the believers at all costs. But how would they stop her from coming when she had been invited? They came up with what they thought was a foolproof trick. They would simply move the meeting place. Ellen Harmon would arrive at an empty house, while all the people she expected to talk to would be somewhere else listening to them preach. Sargent and Robbins told Otis Nichols, who was driving Ellen and her sister to the meeting, that they would be meeting in a home in Boston, and they sent word to the believers that the meeting would be in a home in Randolph, a town about 10 miles south of Boston. 

Everything seemed to go according to plan. The believers arrived in Randolph, and Mr. Sargent got up to preach. But in the middle of his sermon in walked the Nichols family, together with Ellen and Sarah Harmon! Ellen had been told in a vision about the address change. 

After that, things went from bad to worse for the two men. Ellen was taken into vision in front of everyone. To keep people from hearing what she was saying, Sargent and Robbins tried singing and shouting out Bible verses. During this vision, Ellen Harmon held a family Bible in one hand and raised the Bible above her head, then turned the pages with the other hand. 

Without looking she pointed her finger to the verses she was repeating. Some of the people climbed on chairs to see if she was pointing to the right verse—and she was!

Finally, hoarse, Sargent and Robbins couldn’t do anything more to interrupt God’s messenger as she proved from the Bible that what Sargent and Robbins were teaching was false. The words she spoke brought hope to the people—except to Sargent and Robbins. Any hope they had had of continuing to influence the group left with them as they quietly slipped out of the meeting. Their clever trick of moving the meeting didn’t fool God!