January 5, 2014 – January 11, 2014
“Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace unto you, and peace, be multiplied.” I Peter 1:2.
Study Help: The Upward Look, 379; “Ellen G. White Comments,” The Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary, vol. 6, 1114.
“If we are of one mind with God, our will will be swallowed up in God’s will and we shall follow wherever God leads the way. As a loving child places his hand in that of his father, and walks with him in perfect trust whether it is dark or bright, so the sons and daughters of God are to walk with Jesus through joy or sorrow.” That I May Know Him, 250.
1 BEING FITTED
- What was God’s original purpose for man? Ephesians 1:4.
- How is it possible to reach that standard? John 1:12; Hebrews 7:25.
Note: “There could be no such thing as one not prepared for heaven entering heaven. There is no such thing as a human being sanctified and fitted for the heavenly kingdom not having an election to that kingdom. God elects those who have been working on the plan of addition. The explanation is given in the first chapter of Second Peter. For every human being, Christ has paid the election price. No one need be lost. All have been redeemed. To those who receive Christ as a personal Saviour will be given power to become the sons and daughters of God. An eternal life insurance policy has been provided for all.
“Whom God elects, Christ redeems. The Saviour has paid the redemption price for every soul. We are not our own; for we are bought with a price. From the Redeemer, who from the foundation of the world has chosen us, we receive the insurance policy that entitles us to eternal life.” “Ellen G. White Comments,” The Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary, vol. 7, 944.
- Through Whom do we gain our inheritance? Ephesians 1:5, 11.
Note: “In the council of heaven, provision was made that men, though transgressors, should not perish in their disobedience, but, through faith in Christ as their substitute and surety, might become the elect of God predestinated unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to Himself according to the good pleasure of His will. God wills that all men should be saved; for ample provision has been made, in giving His only-begotten Son to pay man’s ransom. Those who perish will perish because they refuse to be adopted as children of God through Christ Jesus.” The Signs of the Times, January 2, 1893.
- How is the salvation of God’s chosen ones secured? I Peter 1:2.
Note: “The Father sets His love upon His elect people who live in the midst of men. These are the people whom Christ has redeemed by the price of His own blood; and because they respond to the drawing of Christ, through the sovereign mercy of God, they are elected to be saved as His obedient children. Upon them is manifested the free grace of God, the love wherewith He hath loved them. Everyone who will humble himself as a little child, who will receive and obey the word of God with a child’s simplicity, will be among the elect of God.” “Ellen G. White Comments,” The Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary, vol. 6, 1114.
- For what are we to diligently strive? II Peter 1:10.
Note: “Here is the condition of the only saving election in the word of God. We are to become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. We are to add grace to grace, and the promise is, ‘If ye do these things, ye shall never fall: for so an entrance shall be ministered unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ’ (II Peter 1:10, 11).” “Ellen G. White Comments,” The Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary, vol. 6, 1114.
“If we comply with the conditions the Lord has made, we shall secure our election to salvation. Perfect obedience to His commandments is the evidence that we love God, and are not hardened in sin.
“There are in the church those who are not made any better by their connection with it. They themselves break the terms of their election. Obedience to the commandments of God gives us a right to the privileges of His church.” Ibid., 1079.
- Is salvation unconditional? II Peter 2:15–20.
Note: “There is no such thing in the word of God as unconditional election—once in grace, always in grace. In the second chapter of Second Peter the subject is made plain and distinct. After a history of some who followed an evil course, the explanation is given: [II Peter 2:15–20 quoted.] Here is a class of whom the apostle warns, ‘For it had been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than, after they have known it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered unto them’ (II Peter 2:21).” “Ellen G. White Comments,” The Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary, vol. 6, 1114.
4 ONCE SAVED – ALWAYS SAVED?
- How does Ezekiel describe the events leading to salvation? Ezekiel 18:21; 33:13.
Note: “There is truth to be received if souls are saved. The keeping of the commandments of God is life eternal to the receiver. But the Scriptures make it plain that those who once knew the way of life and rejoiced in the truth are in danger of falling through apostasy, and being lost. Therefore there is need of a decided, daily conversion to God.
“All who seek to sustain the doctrine of election, once in grace, always in grace, do this against a plain, ‘Thus saith the Lord’ [Ezekiel 18:21; 33:13 quoted].
“Those who have been truly converted have been buried with Christ in the likeness of His death, and raised from the watery grave in the likeness of His resurrection, to walk in newness of life. By faithful obedience to the truth they are to make their calling and election sure.” “Ellen G. White Comments,” The Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary, vol. 6, 1114, 1115.
- What are the two agencies at work in the plan of salvation? II Thessalonians 2:13.
Note: “In this text the two agencies in the work of salvation are revealed—the divine influence, and the strong, living faith of those who follow Christ. It is through the sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth that we become laborers together with God. Christ waits for the co-operation of His church. He does not design to add a new element of efficiency to His word; He has done His great work in giving His inspiration to the word. The blood of Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit, the divine word, are ours. The object of all this provision of heaven is before us—the salvation of the souls for whom Christ died; and it depends upon us to lay hold on the promises God has given, and become laborers together with Him. Divine and human agencies must co-operate in the work.” Counsels to Parents, Teachers and Students, 22.
- Who did Jesus say would hear His voice? John 18:37.
Note: “Here are the conditions upon which every soul will be elected to eternal life. Your obedience to God’s commandments will prove your right to an inheritance with the saints in light. God has elected a certain excellence of character; and every one who, through the grace of Christ, shall reach the standard of His requirement, will have an abundant entrance into the kingdom of glory. All who would reach this standard of character, will have to employ the means that God has provided to this end. If you would inherit the rest that remaineth for the children of God, you must become a co-laborer with God. You are elected to wear the yoke of Christ—to bear His burden, to lift His cross. You are to be diligent ‘to make your calling and election sure’ (11 Peter 1:10). Search the Scriptures, and you will see that not a son or a daughter of Adam is elected to be saved in disobedience to God’s law. The world makes void the law of God; but Christians are chosen to sanctification through obedience to the truth. They are elected to bear the cross, if they would wear the crown.” Fundamentals of Christian Education, 125, 126.
5 SWALLOWED UP IN GOD’S WILL
- What is increased to those who have gained precious faith? II Peter 1:1, 2.
- To those who do not agree in their faith, what question is asked? Amos 3:3.
Note: “If we are of one mind with God, our will will be swallowed up in God’s will and we shall follow wherever God leads the way. As a loving child places his hand in that of his father, and walks with him in perfect trust whether it is dark or bright, so the sons and daughters of God are to walk with Jesus through joy or sorrow.
“The soul that loves God loves to draw strength from Him by constant communion with Him. When it becomes the habit of the soul to converse with God, the power of the evil one is broken, for Satan cannot abide near the soul that draws nigh unto God. If Christ is your companion, you will not cherish vain and impure thoughts; you will not indulge in trifling words that will grieve Him who has come to be the sanctifier of your soul.
“Those who are sanctified through the truth are living recommendations of its power, and representatives of their risen Lord. The religion of Christ will refine the taste, sanctify the judgment, elevate, purify, and ennoble the soul, making the Christian more and more fit for the society of the heavenly angels.” That I May Know Him, 250.
Studies compiled by Judy Hallingstad. Judy is part of the LandMarks team and can be contacted by email at: firstname.lastname@example.org.