Joseph Harvey Waggoner

Though lacking in formal education, Adventist pioneer Joseph Harvey Waggoner (1820-1889) was a man of formidable intellect who mastered Greek and Hebrew, wrote prolifically, and was a pioneer in the health reform movement. He reportedly threw his last plug of tobacco into the stove the same day he converted to Sabbatarian Adventism in 1852. A staunch advocate of religious liberty and strict separation of church and state, Waggoner feared the tendency of organized religions to develop into oppressive powers that trample on liberty of conscience and so only reluctantly accepted the Adventist movement’s transition from radical, free association to formalized denomination in the 1860s. He was the author of books such as The Kingdom of God and The Evils of Religious Legislation.

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