Love Under Fire


The Fatal Error

The fatal error that brought such misery on France was that she ignored this one great truth: true freedom lies within the limits of the law of God. “Oh, that you had heeded My commandments! Then your peace would have been like a river, and your righteousness like the waves of the sea” (Isaiah 48:18). LF 120.4

Those who refuse to read the lesson from the Book of God are invited to read it in history. LF 120.5

When Satan used the Roman Church to lead people away from obedience, he disguised his work. The Spirit of God prevented his plans from reaching their full results. The people did not trace the effect back to its cause and discover the source of their miseries. But in the Revolution the National Council openly set aside the law of God. And in the Reign of Terror which followed, everyone could see the working of cause and effect. LF 120.6

Breaking a just and righteous law will result in ruin. The restraining Spirit of God, which puts a limit on the cruel power of Satan, was mostly removed, and the one who delights in human wretchedness was permitted to do what he wished. Those who had chosen rebellion were left to reap its fruits. Crime filled the land. From devastated provinces and ruined cities came a terrible cry of bitter anguish. France was shaken as if by an earthquake. Religion, law, social order, the family, the state, and the church—all were struck down by the evil hand that had been lifted against the law of God. LF 120.7

God's two faithful witnesses, killed by the blasphemous power that “ascends out of the bottomless pit,” were not to remain silent for long. “After the three-and-a-half days the breath of life from God entered them, and they stood on their feet, and great fear fell on those who saw them” (Revelation 11:11). In 1793, the decrees that set aside the Bible passed the French Assembly. Three and a half years later the same body adopted a resolution rescinding these decrees. People recognized the need for faith in God and His Word as the foundation of virtue and morality. LF 121.1

Concerning the “two witnesses” [the Old and New Testaments], the prophet declares further: “And they heard a loud voice from heaven saying to them, ‘Come up here.’ And they ascended to heaven in a cloud, and their enemies saw them” (Revelation 11:12). “God's two witnesses” have been honored as never before. In 1804, the British and Foreign Bible Society was organized, followed by similar organizations on the European continent. In 1816, the American Bible Society was founded. The Bible has since been translated into many hundreds of languages and dialects. (See Appendix.) LF 121.2

Before 1792, foreign missions received little attention. But toward the close of the eighteenth century a great change took place. People became dissatisfied with rationalism and realized the need for divine revelation and experiential religion. From then on, foreign missions have seen unprecedented growth. (See Appendix.) LF 121.3

Improvements in printing have helped to circulate the Bible. With old prejudices and national exclusiveness breaking down, and the pope's having lost secular power, the way has opened in many places for the Word of God to enter. The Bible has now gone to every part of the globe. LF 121.4

The infidel Voltaire said: “I am weary of hearing people repeat that twelve men established the Christian religion. I will prove that one man will be enough to overthrow it.” Millions have joined in the war on the Bible. But it is far from being destroyed. Where there were a hundred copies in Voltaire's time, there are now a hundred thousand copies of the Book of God. In the words of an early Reformer, “The Bible is an anvil that has worn out many hammers.” LF 121.5

Whatever is built on human authority will be overthrown; but things that are founded on the rock of God's Word will stand forever. LF 121.6