A Greek philosopher who observed second-century believers was
profoundly impressed by their "pure religion", especially their compassion and
concern for the needy. He wrote, "They love one another. They do not overlook
the widow, and they save the orphan. When they see strangers, they take them
under their own roof... they do not call themselves brothers according to the
flesh but according to the spirit. And whenever one of their poor has died, each
of them according to his ability contributes ungrudgingly, and they bury him.
And if they hear that some are condemned or imprisoned on account of the name of
their Lord, they contribute... and send to them what they need, and if it is
possible, they redeem them. And if there is any that is a slave or a poor man,
they fast two or three days, and what they were going to set before themselves
they send to them."