Chronicling events in historical narrative the author makes no attempt to be complete or exhaustive, but rather is selective, drawing in those events that form the background of the great controversy theme. E. White did not write essentially as a historian, rather in all her writings the details of history were always subordinated to the great theme of the conflict. Even where the facts of the Bible or of secular history are introduced, there is usually a characteristic background of the invisible contending forces of good and evil such as no other writer has attempted. Her view of the place of history as exemplified in her own writings is well expressed in the following words:
In the annals of human history, the growth of nations, the rise and fall of empires, appear as if dependent on the will and prowess of man; the shaping of events seems, to a great degree, to be determined by his power, ambition, or caprice. But in the word of God the curtain is drawn aside, and we behold, above, behind, and through all the play and counterplay of human interest and power and passions, the agencies of the All-merciful One, silently, patiently working out the counsels of His own will.—Prophets and Kings, pp. 499, 500.