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From Heaven With Love

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    The Question of Apostolic Succession

    As descent from Abraham was proved, not by name and lineage, but by likeness of character, so apostolic succession rests not on the transmission of ecclesiastical authority, but on spiritual relationship. A life actuated by the apostles’ spirit, the belief and teaching of the truth they taught—this is the true evidence of apostolic succession.HLv 315.5

    Jesus said, “Ye do the deeds of your father.” In mockery the Jews answered, “We be not born of fornication; we have one Father, even God.” These words, in allusion to the circumstances of His birth, were intended as a thrust against Christ in the presence of those who were beginning to believe on Him. Jesus gave no heed to the base insinuation, but said, “If God were your Father, ye would love Me: for I proceeded forth and came from God.”HLv 315.6

    “You are of your father the devil,” said Jesus. “Your will is to do your father's desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, and has nothing to do with the truth, because there is no truth in him... . If I tell the truth, why do you not believe Me?” RSV. The fact that Jesus spoke the truth with certainty was why He was not received by the Jewish leaders. The truth offended these self-righteous men. The truth exposed the fallacy of error; it condemned their teaching and practice; and it was unwelcome. They did not love truth.HLv 316.1

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