Ellen G. White Writings

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That I May Know Him, Page 254

Those First Dangerous Steps, September 5

Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God. Hebrews 3:12.

When the Redeemer of the world walked among men, many who identified themselves with Him as His disciples afterward forsook Him and became His bitterest enemies. The Saviour tested their faith and developed the real characters of the most ardent believers by applying spiritual truths to their hearts....

They must be Christlike, meek and lowly of heart, self-denying, self-sacrificing; they must walk in the narrow path trodden by the Man of Calvary if they would share in the gift of life and the glory of heaven. But the test was too great. They walked no more with Him. They could not hear the saying nor comprehend the nature of the truth He taught....

The work of apostasy begins in some secret rebellion of the heart against the requirements of God's law. Unholy desires, unlawful ambitions, are cherished and indulged, and unbelief and darkness separate the soul from God. If we do not overcome these evils, they will overcome us. Men who have long been advancing in the path of truth will be tested with trial and temptation. Those who listen to the suggestions of Satan and swerve from their integrity begin the downward path, and some masterful temptation hastens them on in the way of apostasy, till their descent is marked and rapid....

We need to be constantly on our guard, to watch and pray lest we enter into temptation. The indulgence of spiritual pride, of unholy desires, of evil thoughts, of anything that separates us from an intimate and sacred association with Jesus imperils our souls.... If the thought of apostasy is grievous to you, and you do not desire to become the enemies of the truth, the accusers of the brethren, then “abhor that which is evil; cleave to that which is good” (Romans 12:9), and believe in Him who is “able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy” (Jude 24).5The Review and Herald, May 8, 1888.

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