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From Trials to Triumph

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    Chapter 54—John, Faithful Witness for Christ

    This chapter is based on the Letters of John, RSV.

    With the other disciples John enjoyed the outpouring of the Spirit on the Day of Pentecost, and with fresh power he continued to speak to the people the words of life. He was a powerful preacher, fervent, and deeply in earnest. In beautiful language and with a musical voice he told of Christ in a way that impressed hearts. The sublime power of the truths he uttered and the fervor that characterized his teachings gave him access to all classes. His life was in harmony with his teachings.TT 287.1

    Christ had bidden the disciples to love one another as He had loved them. “A new commandment I give unto you,” He had said, “that ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another.” John 13:34. After they had witnessed the sufferings of Christ, and after the Holy Spirit had rested on them at Pentecost, they had a clearer concept of the nature of that love which they must have for one another. Then John could say: “By this we know love, that He laid down His life for us; and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren.”TT 287.2

    After Pentecost, when the disciples went forth to proclaim a living Saviour, they rejoiced in the sweetness of communion with saints. They were tender, thoughtful, self-denying, revealing the love that Christ had enjoined on them. By unselfish words and deeds they strove to kindle this love in other hearts.TT 287.3

    Such love the believers were ever to cherish. Their lives were to magnify a Saviour who could justify them by His righteousness.TT 288.1

    But gradually a change came. Dwelling upon mistakes, giving place to unkind criticism, the believers lost sight of the Saviour and His love. They became more particular about the theory than the practice of the faith. They lost brotherly love, and, saddest of all, were unconscious of their loss. They did not realize that happiness and joy were going out of their lives and that they would soon walk in darkness.TT 288.2

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