Chapter 28 is a replay of the early works of Uriah Smith and J. N. Andrews, his brother in law. In the book "Spiritual Gifts" by Ellen White, 1858, no mention is made of this subject in this form. Mainly because it had not been written as yet by others. J. N. Andrews first wrote extensively on the subject in the early "Reviews" of January 3, to February 3, 1853, with one article in the December 23 issue of 1852. When his brother in law's book called "The Sanctuary and the Twenty-Three Hundred Days of Daniel VIII, 14, by Uriah Smith, appeared the preface had the following acknowledgment.
In introducing to the reader a work on the subject of the sanctuary, we have no occasion to make any apology for adding another to the multitude of books that have been written on this subject; for no such multitude of books on this question exists. Indeed, we know of but two works that have preceded this, each of them published under the auspices of the same denomination to which the writer of this belongs, and each of them advocating the same view that is here presented. The first of these was by Eld. J. N. Andrews, author of the History of the Sabbath, and other important works, and who, though the pioneer in the presentation of the subject, left no essential feature to be discovered by additional light. It was thought that the importance of this subject would warrant a work giving it a more extended examination and setting forth more fully the reasons upon which it rests. To this thought the present volume owes its existence. (1877)
Thus, it is clear, that none of the early believers felt that Ellen White was the author of the thoughts and belief on the subject of the Sanctuary or the Investigative Judgment. When the "Spirit of Prophecy", Volume 4 appeared in 1884, this chapter contained eight and one half pages with 21 Bible texts and the standard belief or thoughts of the early Adventists on the subject, all which could be found in the works of Smith and Andrews. In the later edition of "Great Controversy" it must have been thought that the chapter needed beefing up as 61 Bible texts were used in it's 13 pages, but still no new ideas or major thoughts were presented, thus showing again, that none of this chapter was claimed at the time of it's writing to have come from "visions" or special "revelations" from God to Ellen. In as much as most if not all of the texts are standard and can be found in the writings of others before her, only a statement or two will be given to show that Smith and Andrews got there first when it comes to the thoughts of this chapter on the Investigative Judgment.
Spirit of Prophecy, Volume 4, by Ellen G. White, Chapter 23, The Investigative Judgment. Pages 307-315 - 1884
1. The opening of the investigative Judgment is brought to view in Dan. 7: 9,10 The relation of Christ to this move on the part of the Father, is indicated in verses 13, 14; "I saw in the night visions, and behold, one like the Son of man came with the clouds of heaven, and came to the Ancient of days, and they brought him near before him. And there was given him dominion, and glory, and a kingdom," etc. This is not Christ's second coming to earth, for the Ancient of days is not here; but he came to the Ancient of days in Heaven, and came to receive dominion and a kingdom, which he will receive at the conclusion of his work as priest is escorted by a multitude of heavenly beings
This involves an examination of the books. "And the dead," says John, "were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works." Rev. 20:12 the book of life is kept of each one's actions, the thoughts, words, and deeds that make up the texture of his character, and the course of his life. So Peter declared, "Repent ye, therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out" Acts 3:19. Of the same class Christ speaks in Rev. 3:5. "He that overcometh, the same shall be clothed in white raiment."
It is an investigative Judgment, every individual of every generation from the beginning of the world thus passes in review before the great tribunal above.
This work has been going forward in the sanctuary above, since the end of the prophetic period in 1844. Beginning, according to the natural order, with the earliest generation, the work of examination passes on down through all the records of time, and closes with the living. Then the sealing message of Rev. 7 will have performed its work.
For nearly thirty-three years already this solemn work has been in progress. How much longer can it continue? Nearly thirty-three years of this decisive work of investigative Judgment already pass, and yet how few of all the masses of the earth dream of their position?
Forgiveness is conditional; the condition being that we comply with certain requirements upon which it is suspended, till the end o four probation. Eze. 18: 26
It is by faith. The time comes for the investigative Judgment for the last division of Christ's work as priest for the sanctuary to be cleansed, for sins to be blotted out, for the atonement to be made. The books are opened. Every case is examined. Then the sins of those whose record shows their last acts to have been acts of repentance, faith and obedience, are atoned for, or blotted out.
Smith, Uriah, The Sanctuary, Pages 236, 259-260, 280-282 - 1877
1. "I behold," says the prophet Daniel, "till the thrones were cast down, and the Ancient of days did sit, whose garment was white as snow And, behold, one like the Son of man came with the clouds of heaven, and came to the Ancient of days, and they brought him near before him." Dan. 7: 9, 10, 13, 14.
Thus was presented to the prophet's vision the opening of the investigative Judgment. The coming of Christ here described is not his second coming to the earth. He comes to the Ancient of days in Heaven to receive dominion, and glory, and a kingdom, which will be given him at the close of his mediatorial work. It is this coming, and not his second advent to the earth, that was foretold in prophecy to take place at the termination of the 2300 days, in 1844. Attended by a cloud of heavenly angels, our great High Priest enters the holy of holies, and there appears in the presence of God to engage in the last acts of his ministration in behalf of man.
"The dead were judged," says John, "out of those things which were written n the books, according to their works." Rev. 20: 12. In view of this Judgment, Peter exhorted the men of Israel; "Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out," Acts 3: 19, 20 "He that overcometh, the same shall be clothed in white raiment; and I will not blot out his name out of the book of life." Rev. 3: 5.
The lives of all who have believed on Jesus pass in solemn review before God. Beginning with those who first lived upon the earth, our Advocate examines the cases of each successive generation, and closes with the living. Every name is mentioned, every case closely investigated. Names are accepted, names rejected. From age to age, all who have truly repented of sin, and by faith claimed the blood of Christ
(Beginning with those who first lived upon the earth, our Advocate presents the cases of each successive generation, and closes with the living. All who have truly repented of sin, and by faith claimed the blood of Christ as their stoning sacrifice, have had pardon entered against their names) "Great Controversy", page 483
Solemn are the scenes connected with the closing work of the atonement. Momentous are the interests involved. The Judgment is now passing in the sanctuary above. Forty years has this work been in progress. Soon--none know how soon--it will pass to the cases of the living.
(Solemn are the scenes connected with the closing work of the atonement. Momentous are the interests involved therein. The judgment is now passing in the sanctuary above. For many years this work has been in progress. ("Great Controversy", page 490)
White, Ellen, Spirit of Prophecy, Volume 4, Pages 307-315 - 1884