From Trials to Triumph


John Saw the Dangers Threatening the Church

John was sad to see these poisonous errors creeping into the church, and he met the emergency with promptness and decision. His letters breathe the spirit of love, as if he wrote with a pen dipped in love, but when he came in contact with those who were breaking the law of God, yet claiming to live without sin, he did not hesitate to warn them of their fearful deception. TT 291.1

Writing to a woman of wide influence, he said: “Many deceivers have gone out into the world, men who will not acknowledge the coming of Jesus Christ in the flesh; such a one is the deceiver and the antichrist... . He who abides in the doctrine has both the Father and the Son. If any one comes to you and does not bring this doctrine, do not receive him into the house or give him any greeting; for he who greets him shares his wicked work.” TT 291.2

There exist in these last days evils similar to those that threatened the early church. “You must have love,” is the cry heard everywhere, especially from those who profess sanctification. But true love is too pure to cover unconfessed sin. While we are to love souls, we are to make no compromise with evil. We are not to unite with the rebellious, and call this love. God requires His people to stand for the right as unflinchingly as did John in opposition to soul-destroying errors. TT 291.3

The apostle teaches that we are to deal in plain terms with sin and sinners; this is not inconsistent with true love. “Every one who commits sin,” he writes, “is guilty of lawlessness; sin is lawlessness. You know that He appeared to take away sins, and in Him there is no sin. No one who abides in Him sins; no one who sins has either seen Him or known Him.” TT 291.4

As a witness for Christ, John entered into no wearisome contention. He declared what he knew. He had been intimately associated with Christ and had witnessed His miracles. For him the darkness had passed away; the true Light was shining. Out of the abundance of a heart overflowing with love for the Saviour he spoke; and no power could stay his words. TT 292.1

“That which was from the beginning,” he declared, “which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon and touched with our hands, concerning the word of life ... we proclaim also to you.” TT 292.2

So may every true believer be able to bear witness to that which he has seen and heard and felt of the power of Christ. TT 292.3