Ellen G. White Writings

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SDA Bible Commentary, vol. 7 (EGW), Page 958

9. The Synagogue of Satan—Christ speaks of the church over which Satan presides as the synagogue of Satan. Its members are the children of disobedience. They are those who choose to sin, who labor to make void the holy law of God. It is Satan's work to mingle evil with good, and to remove the distinction between good and evil. Christ would have a church that labors to separate the evil from the good, whose members will not willingly tolerate wrong-doing, but will expel it from the heart and life (The Review and Herald, December 4, 1900).

10. Crowns Bestowed by Christ—In that day of final punishment and reward, both saints and sinners will recognize in Him who was crucified the Judge of all living. Every crown that is given to the saints of the Most High will be bestowed by the hands of Christ—those hands that cruel priests and rulers condemned to be nailed to the cross. He alone can give to men the consolation of eternal life (The Review and Herald, November 22, 1898).

Chapter 3

1 (2 Corinthians 4:7; Galatians 2:20; Philippians 1:21; 3:8). Faithful Stewards Over Ourselves—[Revelation 3:1 quoted.] God calls upon this church to make a change. They had a name to live, but their works were destitute of the love of Jesus. Oh, how many have fallen because they trusted in their profession for salvation! How many are lost by their effort to keep up a name! If one has the reputation of being a successful evangelist, a gifted preacher, a man of prayer, a man of faith, a man of special devotion, there is positive danger that he will make shipwreck of faith when tried by the little tests that God suffers to come. Often his great effort will be to maintain his reputation.

He who lives in the fear that others do not appreciate his value is losing sight of Him who alone makes us worthy of glorifying God. Let us be faithful stewards over ourselves. Let us look away from self to Christ. Then there will be no trouble at all. All the work done, however excellent it may appear to be, is worthless if not done in the love of Jesus. One may go through the whole round of religious activity, and yet, unless Christ is woven into all that he says and does, he will work for his own glory (Letter 48, 1903).

1-3. Remember How Thou Hast Received—A warning is given of a time when errors would come in as a thief to steal away the faith of God's people, when they must watch diligently and be constantly guarded against the delusions of the enemy.

In Sardis many had been converted through the preaching of the apostles. The truth had been received as a bright and shining light. But some had forgotten the wonderful manner in which they had received the truth, and Jesus found it necessary to send reproof.

One after another of the old standardbearers had fallen, and some had become wearied of the oft-repeated truths. They desired a new phase of doctrine, more pleasing to many minds. They thought they needed a wonderful change, and in their spiritual blindness did not discern that their sophistries would uproot all the experiences of the past.

But the Lord Jesus could see the end from the beginning. Through John He sent them the warning, “Remember therefore how thou hast received and heard, and hold fast, and repent. If therefore thou shalt not watch, I will come on thee as a thief” (Manuscript 34, 1905).

(2 Timothy 2:23-26.) Hazards of Quibbling—[Revelation 3:1-3 quoted.] Among the people to whom this message was sent, there were those who had heard and been convinced by the preaching of John the Baptist, but who had lost the faith in which they once rejoiced. There were others who had received the truth from Christ's teaching, and who were once ardent believers, but who had lost their first love, and were without spiritual strength. They had not held the beginning of their confidence firm unto the end. They had a name to live, but as far as exerting a saving influence is concerned, they were dead. They had a form of godliness without the power. They quibbled about matters of no special importance, not given by the Lord as tests, till these matters became as mountains, separating them from Christ and from one another....

“I know thy works, that thou hast a name that thou livest, and art dead.” With God outward show weighs nothing. The outward forms of religion, without the love of God in the soul, are utterly worthless.

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