Ellen G. White Writings

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Sketches from the Life of Paul, Page 110

hindered his labors. The apostle himself acknowledged that he was in Corinth “in weakness, and in fear, and in much trembling;” but God, “who comforteth those that are cast down,” comforted him by the arrival of his friends. God designs that fellow-laborers in the gospel shall have their hearts knit closely together in the bonds of Christian love, so that their presence shall greatly cheer and encourage one another.

Paul had sent Timothy to revisit the places of his former labors, and to confirm and establish the church at Thessalonica. Timothy's report was encouraging, and refreshed the spirit of Paul. He was thus prompted to write to these beloved brethren. His first and second epistles to the church are given us. His heart was drawn out in love to those who had embraced the doctrine of Christ, which subjected them to reproach and persecution heretofore unknown to them.

There was still another reason for Paul's communication to these brethren. Some who were newly brought into the faith had fallen into errors in regard to those who had died since their conversion. They had hoped that all would witness the second coming of Christ; but they were in great sorrow as one after another of the believers fell under the power of death, making it impossible for them to behold that desirable event,—the coming of Christ in the clouds of heaven.

Some, who had fallen into the error that Christ was to come in their day, imbibed the fanatical idea that it was praiseworthy to show their faith by giving up all business, and resigning themselves to idle waiting for the great event which they thought was near. Others despised the gift of prophecy, exalting all other gifts above that.

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