Jiri Moskala, Professor for Old Testament Exegesis and Theology at the SDA Theological Seminary at Andrews University, shared a paper about the characteristics and major roles of prophets in the Old Testament and whether these roles/tasks can be found in the ministry of Ellen G. White.*
Testimony. Dr. Moskala started with a personal testimony on how he had gone from a fearful picture of God to the picture a loving, a "smiling" God, who wants the best for everyone and who delights in His children. He found forgiveness, a new picture of God, joy of salvation and assurance of salvation in Christ. In this context, he found God as a loving savior also in Ellen White's writings, for example in Steps to Christ: "If you give yourself to Him, and accept Him as your personal Saviour, then, sinful as your life may have been, for His sake you are accounted righteous. Christ's character stands in place of your character, and you are accepted before God as just as if you had not sinned." (p.62) Actually, her writings had a big influence on Moskala's spiritual growth.
Phenomenon of Prophecy. Pointing to the dominant role of prophets in the Old Testament (OT), Dr. Moskala listed several prophets and the crucial points in salvation history in which they were called to their ministry: Noah (before the Flood); Abraham (starting point for a new ministry to all nations); Moses (Exodus from Egypt); Hosea and Amos (before Samaria's fall in 722 BC); Jeremiah, Ezekiel, Daniel (before and during Babylonian captivity); John the Baptist (before Christ's appearing). Prophets also came often during a distinct time of crisis, Elijah and Elisha for example (Israel's idolatry).
Moskala quoted Abraham Heschel and said: "The God of the philosophers is a concept derived from abstract ideas; the God of the prophets is derived from acts and events." (Heschel, God in Search for Man, p. 213). After that Moskala gave an overview over the different kinds of prophets: starting with Enoch (first prophet, Jude 14) and his son Methuselah (prophetic meaning of name: "At his death He will send" or "When he is dead it shall be sent" - pointing to the flood which came in the year of Methuselah's death). Then Moskala proceeded to honorary prophets (Noah [Gen 6-9], Abraham [Gen 20:7], Moses [Deut 18:15, 18], Samuel [1 Sam 3:20] and David [Acts 2:29-30]) and mentioned also the different classifications of prophets in general (non-writing prophets [e.g. Enoch, Abraham, Elijah and Elisha] and classical writing prophets [major and minor prophets - number of 16]). Beside these there are, according to Moskala, also other special categories of prophets: those, whose writings were not included in the biblical canon (Samuel, Nathan, Gad [see 1 Chr 29:29; 2 Chr 9:29]) and prophetesses like Miriam and Hulda.