February 24—March 2, 2002
“And this is life eternal, that they might know Thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom Thou hast sent.” John 17:3.
Study Help: Steps to Christ, 85–91.
Thought to Remember: “A knowledge of God is the foundation of all true education and of all true service. It is the only real safeguard against temptation. It is this alone that can make us like God in character.” The Ministry of Healing, 409.
“The knowledge of God as revealed in Christ is the knowledge that all who are saved must have. It is the knowledge that works transformation of character. This knowledge, received, will re-create the soul in the image of God. It will impart to the whole being a spiritual power that is divine.” Ibid., 425.
An Essential Knowledge
1 What does God say is the most necessary knowledge for man to know and understand? Jeremiah 9:23, 24.
note: “In a knowledge of God all true knowledge and real development have their source. Wherever we turn, in the physical, the mental, or the spiritual realm; in whatever we behold, apart from the blight of sin, this knowledge is revealed. Whatever line of investigation we pursue, with a sincere purpose to arrive at truth, we are brought in touch with the unseen, mighty Intelligence that is working in and through all. The mind of man is brought into communion with the mind of God, the finite with the Infinite. The effect of such communion on body and mind and soul is beyond estimate.” Education, 14.
2 What does Jesus tell us is the most essential knowledge to possess in order to receive eternal life? John 17:3.
note: “‘This is life eternal, that they might know Thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom Thou hast sent.’ Oh, do we know God as we should? What comfort, what joy, we should have if we were to learn daily the lessons He desires us to learn! We must know Him by an experimental knowledge. It will be profitable for us to spend more time in secret prayer, in becoming personally acquainted with our heavenly Father. In our weakness we may come to Him and ask Him to impart to us an understanding of what He will do for us in separating from us everything that is unlike His own character.” Medical Ministry, 102.
Revealed in His Works
3 What do the heavens declare about God? Psalm 97:6.
note: “The beauties of nature have a tongue that speaks to our senses without ceasing. The open heart can be impressed with the love and glory of God as seen in the works of His hand. The listening ear can hear and understand the communications of God through the works of nature. There is a lesson in the sunbeam and in the various objects in nature that God has presented to our view. The green fields, the lofty trees, the buds and flowers, the passing cloud, the falling rain, the babbling brook, the sun, moon, and stars in the heavens, all invite our attention and meditation, and bid us become acquainted with God, who made them all.” Testimonies, vol. 3, 333.
4 What does the Bible say we can understand about God from the things He has made? Romans 1:20.
note: “The beauties in nature are a theme for contemplation. In studying the natural loveliness surrounding us, the mind is carried up through nature to the Author of all that is lovely. All the works of God are speaking to our senses, magnifying His power, exalting His wisdom. Every created thing has in it charms which interest the child of God and mold his taste to regard these precious evidences of God’s love above the work of human skill.” Ibid., 377. See also Patriarchs and Prophets, 116.
5 What does God tell us we need to receive before we can understand and find the knowledge of God? Proverbs 2:1, 2, 5, 6.
note: “He who has a knowledge of God and His word through personal experience has a settled faith in the divinity of the Holy Scriptures. He has proved that God’s word is truth, and he knows that truth can never contradict itself. He does not test the Bible by men’s ideas of science; he brings these ideas to the test of the unerring standard. He knows that in true science there can be nothing contrary to the teaching of the word; since both have the same Author, a correct understanding of both will prove them to be in harmony.” The Ministry of Healing, 462.
“God speaks to us in His word. Here we have in clearer lines the revelation of His character, of His dealings with men, and the great work of redemption.” Steps to Christ, 87.
6 Where did Jesus say we could gain a knowledge of Him? John 5:39; Luke 24:25–27.
note: “God designed the Bible to be a lessonbook to all mankind, in childhood, youth, and manhood, and to be studied through all time. He gave His word to men as a revelation of Himself. Every new truth discerned is a fresh disclosure of the character of its Author. The study of the Scriptures is the means divinely ordained to bring men into closer connection with their Creator and to give them a clearer knowledge of His will. It is the medium of communication between God and man.” The Great Controversy, 69. See also Steps to Christ, 88.
Revealed In His Son
7 Where did Paul say we could learn of the knowledge of God’s glory? 11 Corinthians 4:5, 6.
note: “Christ came to teach human beings what God desires them to know. In the heavens above, in the earth, in the broad waters of the ocean, we see the handiwork of God. All created things testify to His power, His wisdom, His love. Yet not from the stars or the ocean or the cataract can we learn of the personality of God as it was revealed in Christ. God saw that a clearer revelation than nature was needed to portray both His personality and His character. He sent His Son into the world to manifest, so far as could be endured by human sight, the nature and the attributes of the invisible God.” The Ministry of Healing, 419. See also Selected Messages, Book 1, 295.
8 Whose life did Jesus’ life reflect perfectly? John 14:7–9.
note: “Satan led men to conceive of God as a being whose chief attribute is stern justice,—one who is a severe judge, a harsh, exacting creditor. He pictured the Creator as a being who is watching with jealous eye to discern the errors and mistakes of men, that He may visit judgments upon them. It was to remove this dark shadow, by revealing to the world the infinite love of God, that Jesus came to live among men. The Son of God came from heaven to make manifest the Father.” Steps to Christ, 11. See also Testimonies, vol. 5, 738, 739.
Revealed in His Law
9 With what attributes does Paul define God’s law? Romans 7:12.
note: “The law of God is as sacred as God Himself. It is a revelation of His will, a transcript of His character, the expression of divine love and wisdom. The harmony of creation depends upon the perfect conformity of all beings, of everything, animate and inanimate, to the law of the Creator.” Patriarchs and Prophets, 52.
“And since the law of God is ‘holy, and just, and good,’ a transcript of the divine perfection, it follows that a character formed by obedience to that law will be holy. Christ is a perfect example of such a character. He says: ‘I have kept My Father’s commandments.’ ‘I do always those things that please Him.’ John 15:10; 8:29. The followers of Christ are to become like Him—by the grace of God to form characters in harmony with the principles of His holy law. This is Bible sanctification.” The Great Controversy, 469.
10 What do God and His law have in common? Compare 1 John 4:8 and Romans 13:10.
note: “The law of God, from its very nature, is unchangeable. It is a revelation of the will and the character of its Author. God is love, and His law is love. Its two great principles are love to God and love to man. ‘Love is the fulfilling of the law.’ Romans 13:10. The character of God is righteousness and truth; such is the nature of His law.” Ibid., 467.
“Jesus, the express image of the Father’s person, the effulgence of His glory; the self-denying Redeemer, throughout His pilgrimage of love on earth, was a living representation of the character of the law of God. In His life it is made manifest that heaven-born love, Christlike principles, underlie the laws of eternal rectitude.” Thoughts from the Mount of Blessing, 49.
An Everlasting Knowledge
11 What does the Bible say is the reward of an experiential understanding of God in the person of His Son Jesus Christ? 1 John 5:20.
note: “Look to the top of the ladder. God is above it. His glory shines on every soul ascending heavenward. Jesus is this ladder. Climb up by Him, cling to Him, and erelong you will step off the ladder into His everlasting kingdom.…You must, indeed, look to Jesus, keeping your eyes fixed on the glory at the top of the ladder. Through Christ alone can you make sure of heaven, where all is purity, holiness, peace, and blessedness, where there are glories that mortal lips cannot describe. The nearest we can come to a description of the reward that awaits the overcomer is to say that it is a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory. It will be an eternity of bliss, a blessed eternity, unfolding new glories throughout the ceaseless ages.” Testimonies, vol. 8, 130, 131.
12 What did John see the redeemed doing on the “sea of glass”? Revelation 15:2, 3.
note: “In this life we can only begin to understand the wonderful theme of redemption. With our finite comprehension we may consider most earnestly the shame and the glory, the life and the death, the justice and the mercy, that meet in the cross; yet with the utmost stretch of our mental powers we fail to grasp its full significance. The length and the breadth, the depth and the height, of redeeming love are but dimly comprehended. The plan of redemption will not be fully understood, even when the ransomed see as they are seen and know as they are known; but through the eternal ages new truth will continually unfold to the wondering and delighted mind. Though the griefs and pains and temptations of earth are ended and the cause removed, the people of God will ever have a distinct, intelligent knowledge of what their salvation has cost. The cross of Christ will be the science and the song of the redeemed through all eternity.” The Great Controversy, 651. See also The Ministry of Healing, 466, and Testimonies to Ministers, 433.