SDA Bible Commentary, vol. 7 (EGW)

58/80

Chapter 4

1 (Isaiah 8:20; Matthew 7:15, 16; 24:11, 23, 24; 1 Thessalonians 5:19-21; 1 Timothy 4:1; see EGW on Colossians 2:8; Revelation 1:1, 2). Beware of False Prophets—In these days of peril we are not to accept everything that men bring to us as truth. As professed teachers from God come to us declaring that they have a message from God, it is proper to inquire carefully, How do we know that this is truth? Jesus has told us that “false prophets shall arise and shall deceive many.” But we need not be deceived; for the Word of God gives us a test whereby we may know what is truth. The prophet says, “To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them.” 7BC 951.7

From this statement it is evident that it becomes us to be diligent Bible students, that we may know what is according to the law and the testimony. We are safe in no other course of action. Jesus says, “Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. Ye shall know them by their fruits” (The Review and Herald, February 23, 1892). 7BC 951.8

In these days of delusion, every one who is established in the truth will have to contend for the faith once delivered to the saints. Every variety of error will be brought out in the mysterious working of Satan, which would, if it were possible, deceive the very elect, and turn them from the truth.... 7BC 952.1

There will be false dreams and false visions, which have some truth, but lead away from the original faith. The Lord has given men a rule by which to detect them: “To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them.” If they belittle the law of God, if they pay no heed to His will as revealed in the testimonies of His Spirit, they are deceivers. They are controlled by impulse and impressions which they believe to be from the Holy Spirit and consider more reliable than the Inspired Word. They claim that every thought and feeling is an impression of the Spirit; and when they are reasoned with out of the Scriptures, they declare that they have something more reliable. But while they think that they are led by the Spirit of God, they are in reality following an imagination wrought upon by Satan (Bible Echo and Signs of the Times, September 1886, reprinted from The Signs of the Times, March 27, 1884). 7BC 952.2

(Acts 20:30, 31.) I would say to our dear brethren who have been so eager to accept everything that came in the form of visions and dreams, Beware that you be not ensnared. Read the warnings that have been given by the world's Redeemer to His disciples to be given again by them to the world. The Word of God is solid rock, and we may plant our feet securely upon it. Every soul must needs be tested, every faith and doctrine must needs be tried by the law and the testimony. Take heed that no man deceive you. The warnings of Christ on this matter are needed at this time; for delusions and deceptions will come in among us, and will multiply as we near the end. 7BC 952.3

“Of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them. Therefore watch, and remember.” Bear in mind that trials of this character are to come upon us, not only from without, but from within our own ranks. Our individual safety is in entire consecration to God (Manuscript 27, 1894). 7BC 952.4

7, 8 (1 Peter 1:22). Working With Love—Pure love is simple in its operations, and separate from every other principle of action. When combined with earthly motives and selfish interests, it ceases to be pure. God considers more with how much love we work, than the amount we do. Love is a heavenly attribute. The natural heart cannot originate it. This heavenly plant only flourishes where Christ reigns supreme. Where love exists, there is power and truth in the life. Love does good and nothing but good. Those who have love bear fruit unto holiness, and in the end everlasting life (The Youth's Instructor, January 13, 1898). 7BC 952.5

*****