Ellen G. White Writings

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Sketches from the Life of Paul, Page 318

of the instrument was all that he could endure. As he threw it aside with a groan of despair, horsemen were heard approaching. His retreat was discovered; a few moments, and he would be in the power of his enemies. Terrified alike at the thought of torture and suicide, he still hesitated, and was compelled at last to let a slave help his trembling hand force a dagger into his throat. Thus perished the tyrant Nero, at the early age of thirty-two.

God in his infinite mercy bears long with the transgressors of his law. In the days of Abraham he declared that the idolatrous Amorites should still be spared until the fourth generation; for their iniquity was not yet full, and he could not give command for their destruction. For more than four hundred years he spared them, but when, instead of turning to repentance, they hardened their hearts in iniquity, and made war upon his people, their day of probation closed, and the mandate went forth for their utter extinction. With unerring accuracy, the Infinite One keeps a record of the impiety of nations and individuals. Long is his mercy tendered to them, with calls to repentance; but when their guilt reaches a certain limit, which he has fixed, then mercy ceases her pleadings, and the ministration of wrath begins.

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Chapter 31—Paul's Last Letter

From the judgment-hall of Caesar, Paul returned to his prison-house, knowing that he had gained for himself only a brief respite; his

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