March 16, 2014 – March 22, 2014
“And whatsoever ye shall ask in My name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If ye shall ask any thing in My name, I will do it. If ye love Me, keep My commandments.” John 14:13–15.
Study Help: Faith and Works, 91–94; The Review and Herald, July 1, 1890.
“If there were greater humility, greater simplicity, and unfaltering confidence in the name that is above every name, if we imitated the divine Pattern that has been given us, would we not receive the blessings promised?” The Review and Herald, July 1, 1890.
1 UNFALTERING CONFIDENCE
- In John 14:13–15 it makes a statement. Is it true or false?
Note: “Is this promise true, or is it false? If it is false, then our lack of spiritual strength is excusable. But is it not true? Is it not the word of God? And is not our present condition wholly without reason? If there were greater humility, greater simplicity, and unfaltering confidence in the name that is above every name, if we imitated the divine Pattern that has been given us, would we not receive the blessings promised? It is our privilege to tell the Lord, with the simplicity of a little child, exactly what we want. We may state to Him our temporal matters, asking Him for bread and raiment, as well as for the bread of life and the robe of Christ’s righteousness. Your Heavenly Father knows that you have need of all these things; and you are invited to ask Him concerning them.” The Review and Herald, July 1, 1890.
- Explain what our conduct is to be, Christ’s promise to us and what are we to boldly say? Hebrews 13:5, 6.
- Is the Lord willing that any of us should perish? Of what are we to become knowledgeable? II Peter 3:9; I Timothy 2:4.
2 SPIRITUALLY DISCERNED
- What does the Bible say regarding Christ’s righteousness being imputed to us? Romans 4:11, 22; James 2:23.
Note: “The Lord is our helper. It is not His good pleasure that any should perish, but rather that all should come to a knowledge of the truth and be saved. God will not withhold from man the fulfillment of the only real hope he can have in the world. Jesus says, ‘Without Me, ye can do nothing’ (John 15:5, last part); but in Him, and through His righteousness imputed unto us, we may do all things. The work of the Spirit of God will stand forever, but the works of men will perish.” The Review and Herald, July 1, 1890.
- What is it that the natural man cannot receive? Why? I Corinthians 2:12–14.
Note: “Spiritual things are spiritually discerned. To the worldly-wise the workings of the Spirit of God that leads to confession and acknowledgement of sin and to the acceptance of the truth as it is in Jesus, appear as foolishness. They cannot reason out the “whys” and “wherefores” of its operation any better than did Nicodemus, and they ridicule and denounce the work of God; their human wisdom cannot interpret it.” The Review and Herald, July 1, 1890.
- To whom are we to be looking and why? Hebrews 12:2; Ephesians 2:8, 9.
Note: “Those who trust wholly in the righteousness of Christ, looking to Him in living faith, know the Spirit of Christ, and are known of Christ. Simple faith enables the believer to reckon himself dead indeed unto sin, and alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord. We are saved by grace through faith, and that not of ourselves; it is the gift of God. Should we try to unfold these precious promises to the worldly wise, they would but ridicule us; for ‘the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God; for they are foolishness unto him; neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned’ (I Corinthians 2:14).” The Review and Herald, July 1, 1890.
- When Jesus was about to ascend, what did He say to His disciples? John 14:16, 17, 21.
Note: “Our Saviour declares that the world cannot receive the spirit of truth. They cannot discern the truth, for they discern not Christ, the author of truth. Lukewarm disciples, cold-hearted professors, who are not imbued with the Spirit of Christ, are not able to discern the preciousness of His righteousness; but they go about to establish their own righteousness. The world seeks the things of the world—business, worldly honor, display, selfish gratification. Christ seeks to break this spell which holds men away from Him. He seeks to call men’s attention to the world to come, that Satan has managed to eclipse by his own shadow. Christ brings the eternal world within the range of men’s vision, He presents its attractions before them, tells them that He will prepare mansions for them, and will come again and receive them unto Himself. It is the design of Satan so to fill the mind with inordinate love of sensual things, that the love of God and the desire for heaven shall be expelled from the heart.” The Review and Herald, July 1, 1890.
- What warning is given to us that we may not be distracted from heaven’s treasure? Matthew 6:19.
Note: “He [God] points out their peril in lavishing affection upon useless and dangerous objects. He seeks to draw the mind away from the earthly to the heavenly, that we may not waste time, talent, and opportunity, upon things that are altogether vanity. …
“Our Saviour is constantly working to save men from the devices of Satan, that they may not cheat themselves out of eternal happiness by setting their hearts upon earthly gain.” The Review and Herald, July 1, 1890.
- What are we to be doing in order to lay hold on eternal life? I Timothy 6:19.
Note: “He whose heart is centered upon the treasures of eternal interest, will have a right hold from above, and will appreciate every earthly good as a gift from God, and will enjoy earthly blessings with a superior relish. The only safe place to deposit our treasures is in the bank of heaven. Every deposit made in this bank will accumulate abundant interest; you will be laying up in store for yourselves against the time to come.” The Review and Herald, July 1, 1890.
4 PRIORITY IN OUR LIVES
- Explain what happened in the following two verses: Luke 19:13, 14.
Note: “God calls upon those to whom He has intrusted His goods to acquit themselves as faithful stewards. The Lord would have all things of temporal interest occupy a secondary place in the heart and thoughts; but Satan would have the matters of the earth take the first place in our lives. The Lord would have us approve the things that are excellent. He shows us the conflict in which we must engage, reveals the character and plan of redemption. He lays open before you the perils you will meet, the self-denial that will be required, and He bids you count the cost, assuring you that if you zealously engage in the conflict, divine power will combine with human effort. … The Christian must contend with supernatural forces, but he is not to be left alone to engage in the conflict. The Saviour is the captain of his salvation, and with Him man may be more than conqueror.” The Review and Herald, July 1, 1890.
- To where are we to look and trust? II Corinthians 4:18; 5:1; Proverbs 3:5, 6.
Note: “The vast confederacy of evil is arrayed against those who would overcome; but Christ would have us look to the things that are not seen, to the armies of heaven that encamp round about those who love God, to deliver them. The angels of heaven are interested in behalf of men. The power of Omnipotence is at the service of those who trust in God. The Father accepts the righteousness of Christ in behalf of His followers, and they are surrounded with light and holiness which Satan cannot penetrate. The voice of the Captain of our salvation speaks to His followers, saying, ‘Be of good cheer, I have overcome the world’ (John 16:33). I am your defense; advance to victory.” The Review and Herald, July 1, 1890.
- What is provided through Jesus? Hebrews 2:17.
Note: “Through Christ, restoration as well as reconciliation is provided for man. The gulf that was made by sin has been spanned by the cross of Calvary. A full, complete ransom has been paid by Jesus, by virtue of which the sinner is pardoned, and the justice of the law is maintained. All who believe that Christ is the atoning sacrifice may come and receive pardon for their sins; for through the merit of Christ, communication has been opened between God and man. God can accept me as His child, and I can claim Him and rejoice in Him as my loving Father. We must center our hopes of heaven upon Christ alone, because He is our substitute and surety.” The Review and Herald, July 1, 1890.
5 FAITH NEEDED
- What do the Scriptures say about Abraham and righteousness? Romans 4:3–5.
Note: “Righteousness is obedience to the law. The law demands righteousness, and this the sinner owes to the law; but he is incapable of rendering it. The only way in which he can attain to righteousness is through faith. By faith he can bring to God the merits of Christ, and the Lord places the obedience of His Son to the sinner’s account. Christ’s righteousness is accepted in place of man’s failure, and God receives, pardons, justifies, the repentant, believing soul, treats him as though he were righteous, and loves him as He loves His Son. This is how faith is accounted righteousness; and the pardoned soul goes on from grace to grace, from light to a greater light. He can say with rejoicing, ‘Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost; which He shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour, that being justified by His grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life’ (Titus 3:5–7).” The Review and Herald, November 4, 1890.
- Why do we need faith? Hebrews 11:6.
Note: “Genuine faith appropriates the righteousness of Christ, and the sinner is made an overcomer with Christ; for he is made a partaker of the divine nature, and thus divinity and humanity are combined. …
“He who is trying to reach heaven by his own works in keeping the law, is attempting an impossibility. Man cannot be saved without obedience, but his works should not be of himself; Christ should work in him to will and to do of His good pleasure. …
“Without faith it is impossible to please God. Living faith enables its possessor to lay hold on the merits of Christ, enables him to derive great comfort and satisfaction from the plan of salvation.” The Review and Herald, July 1, 1890.
Studies compiled by Judy Hallingstad. Judy is part of the LandMarks team and can be contacted by email at: firstname.lastname@example.org.