January 12, 2014 – January 18, 2014
“For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, the just shall live by faith.” Romans 1:17.
Study Help: Gospel Workers, 259–263; The Signs of the Times, May 19, 1898.
“There is nothing in faith that makes it our saviour. Faith cannot remove our guilt. Christ is the power of God unto salvation to all them that believe. The justification comes through the merits of Jesus Christ. He has paid the price for the sinner’s redemption. Yet it is only through faith in His blood that Jesus can justify the believer.” “Ellen G. White Comments,” The Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary, vol. 6, 1071.
1 TWO ARMS
- In what frame of mind should God be approached? Hebrews 11:6.
Note: “The greatest victories gained for the cause of God are not the result of labored argument, ample facilities, wide influence, or abundance of means; they are gained in the audience chamber with God, when with earnest, agonizing faith men lay hold upon the mighty arm of power.” Gospel Workers, 259.
- What is necessary to lay hold upon the power of Infinite Love? (See Note.)
Note: “True faith and true prayer—how strong they are! They are as two arms by which the human suppliant lays hold upon the power of Infinite Love. Faith is trusting in God—believing that He loves us, and knows what is for our best good. Thus, instead of our own way, it leads us to choose His way. In place of our ignorance, it accepts His wisdom; in place of our weakness, His strength; in place of our sinfulness, His righteousness. Our lives, ourselves, are already His; faith acknowledges His ownership, and accepts its blessings. Truth, uprightness, purity, are pointed out as secrets of life’s success. It is faith that puts us in possession of these. Every good impulse or aspiration is the gift of God; faith receives from God the life that alone can produce true growth and efficiency.” Gospel Workers, 259.
2 LOOK BEYOND THE PRESENT
- What is the victory that overcomes the world? I John 5:4.
Note: “It is faith that enables us to look beyond the present, with its burdens and cares, to the great hereafter, where all that now perplexes us shall be made plain. Faith sees Jesus standing as our Mediator at the right hand of God. Faith beholds the mansions that Christ has gone to prepare for those who love Him. Faith sees the robe and crown prepared for the overcomer, and hears the song of the redeemed.
“Perfect faith, the surrender of self to God, simple trust in His pledged word, should be a part of every minister’s experience. Only as a minister has this experience can he make the subject of faith plain to the doubting and distrustful.” Gospel Workers, 260.
- If faith is not feeling, what is it? Hebrews 11:1.
- Because faith is not allied to presumption, what should be our prayer? Psalm 19:13, 14.
Note: “Faith is not feeling. … True faith is in no sense allied to presumption. Only he who has true faith is secure against presumption, for presumption is Satan’s counterfeit of faith.
“Faith claims God’s promises and brings forth fruit in obedience. Presumption also claims the promises, but uses them as Satan did, to excuse transgression. Faith would have led our first parents to trust the love of God and to obey His commands. Presumption led them to transgress His law, believing that His great love would save them from the consequences of their sin. It is not faith that claims the favor of Heaven without complying with the conditions on which mercy is to be granted. Genuine faith has its foundation in the promises and provisions of the Scriptures.” Gospel Workers, 260.
3 HEALING TO THE SOUL
- Through what are we kept by the power of God? I Peter 1:3–5.
Note: “To talk of religion in a casual way, to pray without soul-hunger and living faith, avails nothing. A nominal faith in Christ, which accepts Him merely as the Saviour of the world, can never bring healing to the soul. The faith that is unto salvation is not a mere intellectual assent to the truth. He who waits for entire knowledge before he will exercise faith, cannot receive blessing from God.” Gospel Workers, 260.
- Do devils believe? James 2:19.
Note: “It is not enough to believe about Christ; we must believe in Him. The only faith that will benefit us is that which embraces Him as a personal Saviour; which appropriates His merits to ourselves. Many hold faith as an opinion. But saving faith is a transaction, by which those who receive Christ join themselves in covenant relation with God. Genuine faith is life. A living faith means an increase of vigor, a confiding trust, by which the soul becomes a conquering power.” [Emphasis author’s.] Gospel Workers, 261.
- From where does faith come? Romans 10:16, 17.
4 TRYING EXPERIENCES
- How should we respond to trying experiences? I Peter 1:5–9.
Note: “Faith takes God at His word, not asking to understand the meaning of the trying experiences that come. But there are many who have little faith. They are always fearing and borrowing trouble. Every day they are surrounded by the tokens of God’s love, every day they enjoy the bounties of His providence; but they overlook these blessings. And the difficulties they encounter, instead of driving them to God, separate them from Him, by arousing unrest and repining.” Gospel Workers, 261.
- What does God make available to those who ask? Ephesians 3:20, 16; 1:19.
Note: “Do they well to be thus unbelieving? Jesus is their friend. All heaven is interested in their welfare, and their fear and repining grieve the Holy Spirit. Not because we see or feel that God hears us are we to believe. We are to trust His promises. When we come to Him in faith, we should believe that every petition enters into the heart of Christ. When we have asked for His blessing, we should believe that we receive it, and thank Him that we have it. Then we are to go about our duties, assured that the blessing will be sent when we need it most. When we have learned to do this, we shall know that our prayers are answered.” Gospel Workers, 261.
- How did Jesus admonish Peter that this is also applicable to us today? Matthew 14:31.
Note: “Often the Christian life is beset with dangers, and duty seems hard to perform. The imagination pictures impending ruin before, and bondage and death behind. Yet the voice of God speaks clearly, Go forward. Let us obey the command, even though our sight cannot penetrate the darkness. The obstacles that hinder our progress will never disappear before a halting, doubting spirit. Those who defer obedience till every uncertainty disappears, and there remains no risk of failure or defeat, will never obey. Faith looks beyond the difficulties, and lays hold of the unseen, even Omnipotence, therefore it cannot be baffled. Faith is the clasping of the hand of Christ in every emergency.
“The worker for God needs strong faith. Appearances may seem forbidding; but in the darkest hour there is light beyond. The strength of those who, in faith, love and serve God, will be renewed day by day. The understanding of the Infinite is placed at their service, that in carrying out His purposes they may not err. Let these workers hold the beginning of their confidence firm unto the end, remembering that the light of God’s truth is to shine amid the darkness that enshrouds our world.” Gospel Workers, 262.
5 ALL THE STRENGTH WE NEED
- What advice is given by the wise man, Solomon? Proverbs 30:5.
Note: “There is to be no despondency in connection with God’s service. The faith of the consecrated worker is to stand every test brought upon it. God is able and willing to bestow upon His servants all the strength they need, and to give them the wisdom that their varied necessities demand. He will more than fulfil the highest expectations of those who put their trust in Him.” Gospel Workers, 262.
- Who is the only way to the Father and what has He promised? John 14:6; Psalm 72:12.
Note: “Jesus does not call on us to follow Him, and then forsake us. If we surrender our lives to His service, we can never be placed in a position for which God has not made provision. Whatever may be our situation, we have a Guide to direct our way; whatever our perplexities, we have a sure Counselor; whatever our sorrow, bereavement, or loneliness, we have a sympathizing Friend. If in our ignorance we make missteps, Christ does not leave us.” Gospel Workers, 263.
- What has God promised to those who trust in Him? Isaiah 26:3.
Note: “The arm of Omnipotence is outstretched to lead us onward and still onward. Go forward, the Lord says; I will send you help. It is for My name’s glory that you ask; and you shall receive. Those who are watching for your failure shall yet see My word triumph gloriously. ‘All things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive’ (Matthew 21:22).” Gospel Workers, 263.
- Why was Paul not ashamed of the gospel of Christ? Romans 1:16, 17.
Note: “There is nothing in faith that makes it our saviour. Faith cannot remove our guilt. Christ is the power of God unto salvation to all them that believe. The justification comes through the merits of Jesus Christ. He has paid the price for the sinner’s redemption. Yet it is only through faith in His blood that Jesus can justify the believer.
“The sinner cannot depend upon his own good works as a means of justification. He must come to the point where he will renounce all his sin, and embrace one degree of light after another as it shines upon his pathway. He simply grasps by faith the free and ample provision made in the blood of Christ. He believes the promises of God, which through Christ are made unto him sanctification and righteousness and redemption. And if he follows Jesus, he will walk humbly in the light, rejoicing in the light and diffusing that light to others. Being justified by faith, he carries cheerfulness with him in his obedience in all his life. Peace with God is the result of what Christ is to him. The souls who are in subordination to God, who honor Him, and are doers of His Word, will receive divine enlightenment. In the precious Word of God there is purity and loftiness as well as beauty that, unless assisted by God, the highest powers of man cannot attain to.” “Ellen G. White Comments,” The Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary, vol. 6, 1071.
Studies compiled by Judy Hallingstad. Judy is part of the LandMarks team and can be contacted by email at: firstname.lastname@example.org.