January 8, 2012 – January 14, 2012
“The Lord said unto Moses, Write thou these words: for after the tenor of these words I have made a covenant with thee and with Israel.” Exodus 34:27.
Study Help: Testimonies, vol. 2, 604–608.
“The operations of the Spirit are always in harmony with the written word.” The Acts of the Apostles, 284.
1 A MATTER OF RECORD
- What did the Lord direct Moses to do with the light He provided? Exodus 34:27. Why was such a step also important for families? Deuteronomy 6:6, 9.
Note: “As the word of God is meditated upon and practiced, the whole man will be ennobled. In righteous and merciful dealing, the hands will reveal, as a signet, the principles of God’s law. They will be kept clean from bribes, and from all that is corrupt and deceptive. They will be active in works of love and compassion. The eyes, directed toward a noble purpose, will be clear and true. The expressive countenance, the speaking eye, will testify to the blameless character of him who loves and honors the word of God.” The Desire of Ages, 612.
- Through what symbol does Christ show the importance of His written word? Matthew 4:4; John 6:56–58, 63.
Note: “Many need to learn that it is one thing to assent to truth, and another thing to receive the truth as the bread of God, of which, if a man eat, he shall live forever. Day by day we must feed upon the Living Bread that we may receive spiritual sustenance, as we partake of temporal food to give us physical strength.” Manuscript Releases, vol. 11, 34.
2 CREATIVE POWER
- How can God’s written word change our moral character? Hebrews 4:12.
Note: “On every page of God’s word the injunction to obedience is plainly written.” The Signs of the Times, July 27, 1891.
“As the heart is opened to the entrance of the Word, light from the throne of God will shine into the soul. That Word, cherished in the heart, will yield to the student a treasure of knowledge that is priceless. Its ennobling principles will stamp the character with honesty and truthfulness, temperance and integrity.” Our High Calling, 31.
- What reveals the power of God’s word to change a person into a new creature? II Corinthians 5:17; I Peter 1:22–25.
Note: “By looking constantly to Jesus with the eye of faith, we shall be strengthened. God will make the most precious revelations to His hungering, thirsting people. They will find that Christ is a personal Saviour. As they feed upon His word, they find that it is spirit and life. The word destroys the natural, earthly nature, and imparts a new life in Christ Jesus. The Holy Spirit comes to the soul as a Comforter. By the transforming agency of His grace, the image of God is reproduced in the disciple; he becomes a new creature. Love takes the place of hatred, and the heart receives the divine similitude. This is what it means to live ‘by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.’ Matthew 4:4. This is eating the Bread that comes down from heaven.” The Desire of Ages, 391.
- Why are we warned against failing to study what God has said? Proverbs 28:9, 14, second part.
Note: “All who neglect the word of God to study convenience and policy, that they may not be at variance with the world, will be left to receive damnable heresy for religious truth.” The Great Controversy, 523.
“And now to all who have a desire for truth I would say: Do not give credence to unauthenticated reports as to what Sister White has done or said or written. If you desire to know what the Lord has revealed through her, read her published works. Are there any points of interest concerning which she has not written, do not eagerly catch up and report rumors as to what she has said.” Testimonies, vol. 5, 696.
3 SAVORING THE POWER
- What is the psalmist’s plea in reference to God’s word? Psalm 119:116, 133.
- How do David and Jeremiah describe their feelings about God’s word? Psalm 119:16, 17, 140, 162; Jeremiah 15:16.
Note: “It is not safe for us to turn from the Holy Scriptures, with only a casual reading of their sacred pages. … Rein the mind up to the high task that has been set before it, and study with determined interest, that you may understand divine truth. Those who do this, will be surprised to find to what the mind can attain.” Our High Calling, 35.
- How does Jeremiah describe the lack of appreciation which God’s professed people have for Scripture? Jeremiah 2:13.
Note: “In dealing with commonplace productions, and feeding on the writings of uninspired men, the mind becomes dwarfed and cheapened. … The understanding unconsciously accommodates itself to the comprehension of the things with which it is familiar, and in the consideration of these finite things, the understanding is weakened, its powers contracted, and after a time it becomes unable to expand.” Our High Calling, 35.
- Regarding God’s word, what is to be our heart’s longing? Psalm 119:18, 169.
Note: “Why should not this book [the Bible]—this precious treasure—be exalted and esteemed as a valued friend? This is our chart across the stormy sea of life. It is our guide-book, showing us the way to the eternal mansions, and the character we must have to inhabit them. There is no book the perusal of which will so elevate and strengthen the mind as the study of the Bible. Here the intellect will find themes of the most elevated character to call out its powers. There is nothing that will so endow with vigor all our faculties as bringing them in contact with the stupendous truths of revelation. The effort to grasp and measure these great thoughts expands the mind. We may dig down deep into the mine of truth, and gather precious treasures with which to enrich the soul. Here we may learn the true way to live, the safe way to die.” Our High Calling, 31.
4 THE TEST OF GENUINENESS
- What is the surefire way to spot a religious counterfeit? Isaiah 8:20.
Note: “The Bible is the sword of the Spirit, which will never fail to vanquish the adversary. It is the only true guide in all matters of faith and practice. The reason why Satan has so great control over the minds and hearts of men is that they have not made the Word of God the man of their counsel, and all their ways have not been tried by the true test. The Bible will show us what course we must pursue to become heirs of glory.” Our High Calling, 31.
- Describe God’s method to help us understand the Scriptures. Isaiah 28:9, 10, 13.
Note: “The knowledge of the way of life, peace, health, must be given line upon line, precept upon precept, that men and women may see the need of reform. They must be led to renounce the debasing customs and practices which existed in Sodom and in the antediluvian world.” Counsels on Diet and Foods, 446.
- How does the study of the Testimonies relate to the method described above?
Note: “God has been pleased to give you line upon line and precept upon precept. But there are not many of you that really know what is contained in the Testimonies. You are not familiar with the Scriptures. If you had made God’s word your study, with a desire to reach the Bible standard and attain to Christian perfection, you would not have needed the Testimonies. It is because you have neglected to acquaint yourselves with God’s inspired Book that He has sought to reach you by simple, direct testimonies, calling your attention to the words of inspiration which you had neglected to obey, and urging you to fashion your lives in accordance with its pure and elevated teachings. …
“The written testimonies are not to give new light, but to impress vividly upon the heart the truths of inspiration already revealed.” Testimonies, vol. 2, 605.
5 LIVING EPISTLES
- Where is the most important place for God’s word to be written? Proverbs 3:3; 7:2, 3.
- How does the above principle relate to the new covenant experience, which we as Christians are to enjoy? Jeremiah 31:31–33; Hebrews 8:10, 11; 10:16, 17.
- What is the most powerful epistle that can ever be written? II Corinthians 3:3.
Note: “It is no small matter for a family to stand as representatives of Jesus, keeping God’s law in an unbelieving community. We are required to be living epistles known and read of all men. This position involves fearful responsibilities.” The Adventist Home, 31, 32.
- What comforting assurance does the Lord record in writing? Psalm 102:16–18.
- What glorious promise is given to victorious Christians who live by God’s word? Revelation 3:12.
Note: “All knowledge gained in this life of probation which will help us to form characters that will fit us to be companions of the saints in light is true education. It will bring blessings to ourselves and others in this life, and will secure to us the future, immortal life with its imperishable riches.” Our High Calling, 35.
PERSONAL REVIEW QUESTIONS
1 How do the Scriptures compare to the most meticulous legal document?
2 Why can we be morally inspired by the creative power of God’s word?
3 Name one quality shared by David and Jeremiah that is worthy of imitation.
4 Why has God given the Testimonies of the Spirit of Prophecy for today?
5 Mention some important matters that the Lord sees fit to put into writing.
© 2005 Reformation Herald Publishing Association, Roanoke, Virginia. Reprinted by permission.