No, this isn’t the “big issue” with Ellen White, any more than Jeff Sessions’ distortion of the Bible to support the tearing of babies from their mothers’ arms presents a “big issue” so far as understanding the Bible is concerned.
Both Scripture and Ellen White are self-explanatory, and when we view passages from either source in context and within the larger consensus, their true meaning emerges.
The problem is that your understanding of “works” having nothing to do with justification or salvation is not the understanding of “works” that we find in either the Bible or Ellen White. In both sources it is self-generated, superficial human activity that has nothing to do with being saved (e.g. Rom. 2:17-23), not the work of the Holy Spirit in and through the believer, which the New Testament quite clearly states is an integral part of the saving process (II Thess. 2:13; Titus 3:5).
Using your logic, Jesus Himself should be rejected as a theological authority, as He stated very clearly in more than one passage that obedience to the law is a condition for being saved (Matt. 7:21; 19:16-26; Luke 10:25-28). Of course Jesus also makes it plain that we cannot render this obedience in our own strength (Matt. 19:25-26; John 15:5). Through His strength we can do all things (Phil. 4:13); without Him we can do nothing (John 15:5).
The righteousness of Christ indeed covers us as if we have never sinned (SC 62), but this only happens for the penitent who have surrendered all to the Lord (II Chron. 7:13; Prov. 28:13; Isa. 55:7; Matt. 6:14-15). Ellen White is clear in another statement that “God requires the entire surrender of the heart, before justification can take place, and in order for man to retain justification, there must be continual obedience, through active, living faith that works by love and purifies the soul” (1SM 366).
There is no conflict at all between any of the Biblical or Ellen White statements we have cited in this dialogue, once we understand that the “works” that have nothing to do with our salvation are the self-generated kind, not the Spirit-generated kind—the latter clearly being salvific so far as both Scripture and Ellen White are concerned.
And I wouldn’t bring up Martin Luther, frankly, a beer-drinking anti-Semite whose hatred of Jews would later be celebrated by the Nazis (see William L. Shirer, The Rise and Fall of the Reich, pp. 91,236). God certainly used Luther in his day, but the standard of holiness he preached and practiced is in no way good enough for Christians today. I doubt seriously, considering his views, that Luther would be welcome as a speaker at any Seventh-day Adventist gathering in our time, from the most conservative to the most liberal.
As I say so often on this forum, objective witnesses to this conversation can judge for themselves who is quoting the inspired sources faithfully and in context, and who is not. As you have yourself declared in this discussion that hypocrisy is inevitable for anyone who follows the counsel of Ellen White, it makes little sense for any thoughtful observer to take seriously any reference you might make to writings for which you obviously have very little respect.