September 10-16, 2000
MEMORY VERSE: “From that time many of His disciples went back, and walked no more with Him. Then said Jesus unto the twelve, Will ye also go away?” John 6:66, 67.
STUDY HELP: Christian Service, 257–265.
INTRODUCTION: “…When we give ourselves wholly to God and in our work follow His directions, He makes Himself responsible for its accomplishment. He would not have us conjecture as to the success of our honest endeavors. Not once should we even think of failure. We are to cooperate with One who knows no failure. We should not talk of our own weakness and inability. This is a manifest distrust of God, a denial of His word. When we murmur because of our burdens, or refuse the responsibilities He calls upon us to bear, we are virtually saying that He is a hard master, that He requires what He has not given us power to do.” Christ’s Object Lessons, 363.
“Will Ye Also Go Away?”
1 What discouraging experience did Jesus have in His work? John 6:60–66.
NOTE: See Desire of Ages, 393, 489.
2 When was Paul’s witness not accepted? Acts 24:24, 25; Acts 26:27–30.
NOTE: See Acts of the Apostles, 425, 426.
“I, Even I Only, Am Left”
3 What picture are we given of Elijah’s discouragement and how did God treat him? 1 Kings 19:4, 9–13, 18.
NOTE: “If, under trying circumstances, men of spiritual power, pressed beyond measure, become discouraged and desponding, if at times they see nothing desirable in life, that they should choose it, this is nothing strange or new. Let all such remember that one of the mightiest of the prophets fled for his life before the rage of an infuriated woman.…Those who, while spending their life energies in self-sacrificing labor, are tempted to give way to despondency and distrust, may gather courage from the experience of Elijah.” Conflict and Courage, 216.
See also Acts of the Apostles, 23.
4 What lesson may we learn from the story of Jonah? Jonah 1:1–3; 3:1–5.
NOTE: See Prophets and Kings, 266.
“Leap For Joy!”
5 What response did Jesus recommend in times of persecution? Luke 6:22, 23.
NOTE: “Shall we, then, seek for the glory and honor of the world? I thank God that we must renounce the love of the world, and pride of heart, and everything which tends to idolatry, in order to be followers of the Man of Calvary. I present before you, my brethren and sisters, His self-denying life. Why are we so sensitive to trial and reproach, to shame and suffering, when our Lord has given us such an example? Who would wish to enter into the joy of their Lord while they were unwilling to partake of His sufferings? What! the servant unwilling to bear the suffering and shame which the Master unselfishly bore for him! Shall the servant shrink from a life of sacrifice by which he may secure eternal happiness in the Paradise of God? The language of my heart is, “Let me be a partaker with Christ of His sufferings, that I may finally share with Him in His glory.” Review and Herald, May 26, 1885.
6 What example of rejoicing in a time of persecution are we given? Acts 16:25.
NOTE: “In every condition of trial, we may have the consolation of His presence. We may live in the very atmosphere of heaven. Our enemies may thrust us into prison, but prison walls cannot cut off the communication between Christ and our souls. One who sees our every weakness, who is acquainted with every trial, is above all earthly powers; and angels can come to us in lonely cells, bringing light and peace from heaven. The prison will be as a palace, for the rich in faith dwell there; and the gloomy walls will be lighted up with heavenly light, as when Paul and Silas prayed and sang praises at midnight in the Philippian prison. Bunyan was confined in Bedford jail; and thence issued a light that has illuminated the pathway to the celestial city.” Gospel Workers, (1892 edition.) 424, 425.
“Jesus Christ and Him Crucified”
7 What approach did Paul use in witnessing to the philosophers of Athens and with what result? Acts 17:22–34.
NOTE: See Acts of the Apostles, 235, 236.
8 What lesson did Paul learn from his experience at Athens? 1 Corinthians 2:1–4.
NOTE: See Acts of the Apostles, 244.
“Because of Your Unbelief”
9 What failure did the disciples experience and for what reason? Matthew 17:14–21.
NOTE: See Desire of Ages, 431.
10 What results will follow the exercise of faith? Acts 11:24.
NOTE: “This is the science of the gospel. The Scripture declares, ‘Without faith it is impossible to please God.’ The knowledge of what the Scripture means when urging upon us the necessity of cultivating faith, is more essential than any other knowledge that can be acquired. We suffer much trouble and grief because of our unbelief, and our ignorance of how to exercise faith. We must break through the clouds of unbelief. We can not have a healthy Christian experience, we can not obey the gospel unto salvation, until the science of faith is better understood, and until more faith is exercised. There can be no perfection of Christian character without that faith that works by love, and purifies the soul.” Review and Herald, October 18, 1898.
“Bringing His Sheaves With Him”
11 When our witness is rejected, whom are men really rejecting? 1 Samuel 8:7.
NOTE: “True missionary work can be done only in the spirit of the first Missionary who visited our world. He was often in prayer to His Father, and at times presented His petitions with strong crying and tears, pleading that the power of God might save those who knew not that they needed salvation. We must have the spirit that actuated Christ, that led Him to entreat and persuade the rebellious to come unto Him. Even when men turn away from us in hardness of heart, refusing the gift of eternal life, we are to imitate the example of Christ. He did not look with indifference upon those who slighted and rejected Him.” Review and Herald, July 4, 1893.
12 What promise of ultimate success is given to those who work in the Lord’s harvest? Psalms 126:5, 6.
NOTE: “Those who are impressed to enter the work, whether in the home field or in the regions beyond, are to go forward in the name of the Lord. If they depend on God for grace and strength, they will succeed. At the beginning their work may be small, but if they follow the Lord’s plans, it will enlarge. God lives. He will work for the unselfish, self-sacrificing laborer, whoever and wherever he may be.” Christian Service, 258. See also Ministry of Healing, 150.
“Those who become co-laborers with God will increase in moral and spiritual power, while those who devote their time and energies to serving themselves will dwarf, and wither, and die. Christian women, the youth, the middle-aged, and those of advanced years, may have a part in the work of God for this time; and in engaging in this work as they have opportunity, they will obtain an experience of the highest value to themselves. In forgetfulness of self, they will grow in grace. By training the mind in this direction, they will learn how to bear burdens for Jesus, and will realize the blessedness of the service. And soon the time will come when ‘they that sow in tears shall reap in joy.’” Signs of the Times, September 16, 1886.