Bible Study Guides – The Broad Scope of the Prophet’s Work

October 14, 2007 – October 20, 2007

Key Text

“And by a prophet the Lord brought Israel out of Egypt, and by a prophet was he preserved.” Hosea 12:13.

Study Help: Selected Messages, Book 1, 33, 34; Education, 45-50.


“The last work of the prophet Elijah was to visit all the schools of the prophets in Israel, and to give the students divine instruction.” Review and Herald, March 4, 1909.

“Apollos, an Alexandrian Jew, visited Ephesus. He had received the highest Grecian culture, and was a scholar and an orator. He had heard the teachings of John the Baptist, had received the baptism of repentance, and was a living witness that the work of the prophet was not in vain.” Sketches From the Life of Paul, 119.

“God never selected as a prophet either the high priest or any great personage; but rather, he chose low and despised men, once even the shepherd Amos.” The Great Controversy (1888), 142.

1 What does God reveal to His servants the prophets? Amos 3:7.

note: “When, therefore, he [William Miller] found, in his study of the Bible, various chronological periods that, according to his understanding of them, extended to the second coming of Christ, he could not but regard them as the ‘times before appointed,’ [Acts 17:26] which God had revealed unto His servants. ‘The secret things,’ says Moses, ‘belong unto the Lord our God: but those things which are revealed belong unto us and to our children forever;’ and the Lord declares by the prophet Amos, that He ‘will do nothing, but He revealeth His secret unto His servants the prophets.’ Deuteronomy 29:29; Amos 3:7. The students of God’s word may, then, confidently expect to find the most stupendous event to take place in human history clearly pointed out in the Scriptures of truth.” The Great Controversy, 324.

2 What was Moses’ work as Israel’s prophet? Hosea 12:13.

note: “Moses heard the call from heaven to exchange his shepherd’s crook for the rod of authority; to leave his flock of sheep and take the leadership of Israel. The divine command found him self-distrustful, slow of speech, and timid. He was overwhelmed with a sense of his incapacity to be a mouthpiece for God. But he accepted the work, putting his whole trust in the Lord. The greatness of his mission called into exercise the best powers of his mind. God blessed his ready obedience, and he became eloquent, hopeful, self-possessed, fitted for the greatest work ever given to man. Of him it is written: ‘There hath not arisen a prophet since in Israel like unto Moses, whom Jehovah knew face to face.’ Deuteronomy 34:10, A.R.V.” The Ministry of Healing, 475.

3 What was the first great truth revealed in Moses’ writings? Genesis 1:1.

note: “In the beginning, God was revealed in all the works of creation. . . . And upon all things in earth, and air, and sky, He wrote the message of the Father’s love.” Medical Ministry, 10.

“The preparation of the written word began in the time of Moses. Inspired revelations were then embodied in an inspired book. This work continued during the long period of sixteen hundred years¾from Moses, the historian of creation and the law, to John, the recorder of the most sublime truths of the gospel.” The Great Controversy, “Introduction,” v.

4 From what source did Moses receive the various statutes and precepts given to the children of Israel? Deuteronomy 4:1, 2, 5.

note: “Moses was commanded to write, as God should bid him, judgments and laws giving minute instruction as to what was required. These directions relating to the duty of the people to God, to one another, and to the stranger were only the principles of the Ten Commandments amplified and given in a specific manner, that none need err. They were designed to guard the sacredness of the ten precepts engraved on the tables of stone.” Patriarchs and Prophets, 364.

5 In what law did the prophet present instruction to ensure the well-being of God’s chosen people? Malachi 4:4.

note: “In the teaching that God gave to Israel, the preservation of health received careful attention. The people who had come from slavery with the uncleanly and unhealthful habits which it engenders, were subjected to the strictest training in the wilderness before entering Canaan. Health principles were taught and sanitary laws enforced.” The Ministry of Healing, 277.

“God gave to Israel instruction in all the principles essential to physical as well as to moral health, and it was concerning these principles no less than concerning those of the moral law that He commanded them: [Deuteronomy 6:6-9, 20-24 quoted].

“Had the Israelites obeyed the instruction they received, and profited by their advantages, they would have been the world’s object lesson of health and prosperity. If as a people they had lived according to God’s plan, they would have been preserved from the diseases that afflicted other nations. Above any other people they would have possessed physical strength and vigor of intellect. They would have been the mightiest nation on the earth.” Ibid., 283.

“The Israelites failed of fulfilling God’s purpose, and thus failed of receiving the blessings that might have been theirs. But in Joseph and Daniel, in Moses and Elisha, and many others, we have noble examples of the results of the true plan of living. Like faithfulness today will produce like results.” Ibid., 285.

6 Before Moses died, what view of the Promised Land was given to him? Deuteronomy 34:1-5.

note: “A panoramic view of the Land of Promise was presented to him. Every part of the country was spread out before him, not faint and uncertain in the dim distance, but standing out clear, distinct, and beautiful to his delighted vision. In this scene it was presented, not as it then appeared, but as it would become, with God’s blessing upon it, in the possession of Israel. He seemed to be looking upon a second Eden. There were mountains clothed with cedars of Lebanon, hills gray with olives and fragrant with the odor of the vine, wide green plains bright with flowers and rich in fruitfulness, here the palm trees of the tropics, there waving fields of wheat and barley, sunny valleys musical with the ripple of brooks and the song of birds, goodly cities and fair gardens, lakes rich in ‘the abundance of the seas,’ [Deuteronomy 33:19] grazing flocks upon the hillsides, and even amid the rocks the wild bee’s hoarded treasures. It was indeed such a land as Moses, inspired by the Spirit of God, had described to Israel.” Patriarchs and Prophets, 472.

7 What Old Testament incident reveals the prophet as an educator, living and working with his students? 11 Kings 6:1-3.

note: “The schools of the prophets were founded by Samuel to serve as a barrier against the widespread corruption, to provide for the moral and spiritual welfare of the youth, and to promote the future prosperity of the nation by furnishing it with men qualified to act in the fear of God as leaders and counselors. In the accomplishment of this object Samuel gathered companies of young men who were pious, intelligent, and studious. These were called the sons of the prophets.” Patriarchs and Prophets, 593.

“The schools of the prophets, established by Samuel, had fallen into decay during the years of Israel’s apostasy. Elijah re-established these schools, making provision for young men to gain an education that would lead them to magnify the law and make it honorable. Three of these schools, one at Gilgal, one at Bethel, and one at Jericho, are mentioned in the record. Just before Elijah was taken to heaven, he and Elisha visited these centers of training.” Prophets and Kings, 224, 225.

8 What is a difficult yet most important feature of the prophet’s work? Jeremiah 1:17-19; Ezekiel 2:3-8.

note: “He [God] sent His prophets to warn the guilty, denounce their sins, and pronounce judgment upon them. . . .

“In His providence the Lord has seen fit to teach and warn His people in various ways. By direct command, by the sacred writings, and by the spirit of prophecy has He made known unto them His will. My work has been to speak plainly of the faults and errors of God’s people. . . . But I [Ellen White] have been shown that it is not mine to choose my work, but humbly to obey the will of God.” Testimonies, vol. 4, 12, 13.

9 In what role was the prophet frequently cast? Jeremiah 29:19; 32:33.

note: “There are those who profess to believe and to teach the truths of the Old Testament, while they reject the New. But in refusing to receive the teachings of Christ, they show that they do not believe that which patriarchs and prophets have spoken.” Christ’s Object Lessons, 128.

“In the commission to His disciples, Christ not only outlined their work but gave them their message. Teach the people, He said, ‘to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you.’ [Matthew 28:20.] The disciples were to teach what Christ had taught. That which He had spoken, not only in person, but through all the prophets and teachers of the Old Testament, is here included.” Evangelism, 15.

10 What helpful lesson concerning prophetic guidance is taught by a simple Old Testament experience? 1 Samuel 9:1-10, 18-20.

note: “Saul was the son of a powerful and wealthy chief, yet in accordance with the simplicity of the times he was engaged with his father in the humble duties of a husbandman. Some of his father’s animals having strayed upon the mountains, Saul went with a servant to seek for them. For three days they searched in vain, when, as they were not far from Ramah, the home of Samuel, the servant proposed that they should inquire of the prophet concerning the missing property. ‘I have here at hand the fourth part of a shekel of silver,’ he said: ‘that will I give to the man of God, to tell us our way.’ [1 Samuel 9:8.] This was in accordance with the custom of the times. A person approaching a superior in rank or office made him a small present, as an expression of respect. . . .

“At the gate of the city Saul was met by the prophet himself. God had revealed to Samuel that at that time the chosen king of Israel would present himself before him. . . .

“To the request of Saul, ‘Tell me, I pray thee, where the seer’s house is,’ Samuel replied, ‘I am the seer.’ [Verses 18, 19.] Assuring him also that the lost animals had been found, he urged him to tarry and attend the feast, at the same time giving some intimation of the great destiny before him.” Patriarchs and Prophets, 608, 609.

11 What message of hope did Isaiah give? Isaiah 40:1, 2.

note: “The covenant mercy of God led Him to interpose in behalf of His people Israel after their severe chastisement before their enemies. Israel had chosen to walk in her own wisdom and righteousness in the place of the wisdom and righteousness of God, and as a result her nation was ruined. God permitted them to suffer under a double yoke, that they might be humiliated and repent. But in their dispersion and captivity, the Jews were not left in a hopeless state. Encouragement was given them, for through this humiliation they were to be brought to seek the Lord. God gave to Isaiah a message for this people: [Isaiah 40:1, 2 quoted].” “Ellen G. White Comments,” Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary, vol. 4, 1144.

12 What appealing message may be considered as summing up the over-all objective of the messages of the prophets? Amos 4:12, last part.

note: “My brother, my sister, I urge you to prepare for the coming of Christ in the clouds of heaven. Day by day cast the love of the world out of your hearts. Understand by experience what it means to have fellowship with Christ. Prepare for the judgment, that when Christ shall come, to be admired in all them that believe, you may be among those who will meet Him in peace.” Testimonies, vol. 9, 285.

“A book has been given us to guide our feet through the perils of this dark world to heaven. It tells us how we can escape the wrath of God, and also tells of the sufferings of Christ for us, the great sacrifice that has been made that we might be saved and enjoy the presence of God forever. And if any come short at last, having heard the truth as they have in this land of light, it will be their own fault; they will be without excuse. The word of God tells us how we may become perfect Christians and escape the seven last plagues. But they took no interest to find this out. Other things diverted the mind, idols were cherished by them, and God’s Holy Word was neglected and slighted. God has been trifled with by professed Christians, and when His Holy Word shall judge them in the last day, they will be found wanting. That word which they have neglected for foolish storybooks, tries their lives. That is the standard; their motives, words, works, and the manner in which they use their time are all compared with the written word of God; and if they come short then, their cases are decided forever.” Ibid., vol. 1, 125, 126.