March 27, 2004 – April 2, 2004
“For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.” Luke 19:10.
Suggested Reading: Christ’s Object Lessons, 17–27.
“Christ came to bring salvation within the reach of all. Upon the cross of Calvary He paid the infinite redemption price for a lost world. His self-denial and self-sacrifice, His unselfish labor, His humiliation, above all, the offering up of His life, testifies to the depth of His love for fallen man. It was to seek and to save the lost that He came to earth. His mission was to sinners, sinners of every grade, of every tongue and nation. He paid the price for all, to ransom them and bring them into union and sympathy with Himself. The most erring, the most sinful, were not passed by; His labors were especially for those who most needed the salvation He came to bring. The greater their need of reform, the deeper was His interest, the greater His sympathy, and the more earnest His labors. His great heart of love was stirred to its depths for the ones whose condition was most hopeless and who most needed His transforming grace.” Testimonies, vol. 5, 603.
1 For whom did Christ die? Romans 5:6.
note: “The Lord Jesus will receive all who come unto Him. He died for the ungodly and every man who will come, may come. Certain conditions are to be complied with on the part of man, and if he refuses to comply with the conditions, he cannot become the elect of God. If he will comply he is a child of God, and Christ says if he will continue in faithfulness, steadfast and immovable in his obedience, He will not blot out his name out of the book of life but will confess his name before His Father and before His angels.” Manuscript Releases, vol. 2, 149.
2 When did God love us? Romans 5:8. When and by what were we reconciled to Him? By what are we saved? Verse 10.
note: “We are reconciled to God by the death of Christ, but saved by His life. In His life on earth is seen the perfect righteousness which the law demands. By nature we are wholly unrighteous. In our flesh is found no good thing. But through faith we are cleansed from sin, and the righteous life of Jesus is imputed to us. This righteousness is in harmony with the claims of the law, and enables us to stand acquitted in the judgment.” Sabbath School Lesson Quarterly, Pacific Press Publishing Association, Mountain View, California, 1912, 4.
3 What example has Christ left for us? 1 Peter 2:21–23.
note: “From earliest years to manhood, Christ lived a life that was a perfect pattern of humility and industry and obedience. He was always thoughtful and considerate of others, always self-denying. He came bearing the signature of heaven, not to be ministered unto, but to minister. . . .
“The unselfish life of Christ is an example to all. His character is a pattern of the characters we may form if we follow on in His footsteps.” Evangelism, 636.
4 What was the mission of Jesus in this world? Luke 19:10.
note: “Jesus took upon Himself our nature, laid aside His glory, majesty, and riches to perform his mission, to save that which was lost. He came not to be ministered unto, but to minister unto others.” Testimonies, vol. 2, 426.
5 How is man’s helplessness to save himself expressed? John 15:5. Compare Jeremiah 13:23.
note: “Christ . . . has provided the Holy Spirit as a present help in every time of need. But many have a feeble religious experience because, instead of seeking the Lord for the efficiency of the Holy Spirit, they make flesh their arm. Let the people of God be educated to turn to God when in trouble and gain strength from the promises that are yea and amen to every trusting soul. . . .
“The promises of God are full and abundant, and there is no need for anyone to depend upon humanity for strength. To all that call upon Him, God is near to help and succor. And He is greatly dishonored when, after inviting our confidence, we turn from Him—the only One who will not misunderstand us, the only One who can give unerring counsel—to men who in their human weakness are liable to lead us astray.” Testimonies to Ministers and Gospel Workers, 381, 382.
6 By what name does the prophet Jeremiah call Jesus? Jeremiah 23:5, 6.
note: “Reports have reached the rulers in Jerusalem that Jesus is approaching the city with a great concourse of people. But they have no welcome for the Son of God. In fear they go out to meet Him, hoping to disperse the throng. As the procession is about to descend the Mount of Olives, it is intercepted by the rulers. They inquire the cause of the tumultuous rejoicing. As they question, ‘Who is this?’ the disciples, filled with the spirit of inspiration, answer this question. In eloquent strains they repeat the prophecies concerning Christ:
“Adam will tell you, It is the seed of the woman that shall bruise the serpent’s head.
“Ask Abraham, he will tell you, It is ‘Melchizedek King of Salem,’ King of Peace. Genesis 14:18.
“Jacob will tell you, He is Shiloh of the tribe of Judah.
“Isaiah will tell you, ‘Immanuel,’ ‘Wonderful, Counselor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.’ Isaiah 7:14; 9:6.
“Jeremiah will tell you, The Branch of David, ‘the Lord our Righteousness.’ Jeremiah 23:6.
“Daniel will tell you, He is the Messiah.
“Hosea will tell you, He is ‘the Lord God of hosts; the Lord is His memorial.’ Hosea 12:5.
“John the Baptist will tell you, He is ‘the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.’ John 1:29.
“The great Jehovah has proclaimed from His throne, ‘This is My beloved Son.’ Matthew 3:17.
“We, His disciples, declare, This is Jesus, the Messiah, the Prince of life, the Redeemer of the world.
“And the prince of the powers of darkness acknowledges Him, saying, ‘I know Thee who Thou art, the Holy One of God.’ Mark 1:24.” The Desire of Ages, 578, 579.
7 What do we have through the blood of Jesus? Ephesians 1:7.
note: “The conditions of obtaining mercy of God are simple and just and reasonable. The Lord does not require us to do some grievous thing in order that we may have the forgiveness of sin. We need not make long and wearisome pilgrimages or perform painful penances, to commend our souls to the God of heaven or to expiate our transgression; but he that confesseth and forsaketh his sin shall have mercy. [Proverbs 28:13.] This is a precious promise, given to fallen man to encourage him to trust in the God of love and to seek for eternal life in His kingdom.” Testimonies, vol. 5, 635.
8 What is Christ made to us? 1 Corinthians 1:30.
note: “We are individually to put on the Lord Jesus Christ. To each one of us He must become wisdom, righteousness, sanctification, and redemption. When our faith lays hold upon Christ as our personal Saviour, we shall place Him before others in a new light. And when the people behold Christ as He is, they will not wrangle over doctrines; they will flee to Him for pardon, purity, and eternal life.” Colporteur Ministry, 49.
9 For what purpose did God set forth His Son Jesus? Romans 3:24, 25. Of whom is Christ the justifier? Verse 26.
note: “Abundant grace has been provided that the believing soul may be kept free from sin; for all heaven, with its limitless resources, has been placed at our command. We are to draw from the well of salvation. Christ is the end of law for righteousness to everyone who believeth. In ourselves we are sinners; but in Christ we are righteous. Having made us righteous through the imputed righteousness of Christ, God pronounces us just, and treats us as just. He looks upon us as His dear children. Christ works against the power of sin, and where sin abounded, grace much more abounds. ‘Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ: by whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God’ (Romans 5:1, 2).” Selected Messages, Book 1, 394.
10 What Christian experience is described in Galatians 2:20? Whom did Jesus love? For whom did He give Himself?
note: “By His life and His death, Christ has achieved even more than recovery from the ruin wrought through sin. It was Satan’s purpose to bring about an eternal separation between God and man; but in Christ we become more closely united to God than if we had never fallen. In taking our nature, the Saviour has bound Himself to humanity by a tie that is never to be broken. Through the eternal ages He is linked with us.” The Desire of Ages, 25.
11 To what extent is Jesus able to save those who seek His help? Hebrews 7:25.
note: “Christ is able to save to the uttermost all who come to Him in faith. [Hebrews 7:25.] He will cleanse them from all defilement if they will let Him. But if they cling to their sins, they cannot possibly be saved; for Christ’s righteousness covers no sin unrepented of. God has declared that those who receive Christ as their Redeemer, accepting Him as the One who takes away all sin, will receive pardon for their transgressions. These are the terms of our election. Man’s salvation depends upon his receiving Christ by faith. Those who will not receive Him lose eternal life because they refused to avail themselves of the only means provided by the Father and the Son for the salvation of a perishing world.” “Ellen G. White Comments,” Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary, vol. 7, 931.
12 What is the Lord desirous of being to every sinner? Isaiah 30:18.
note: “His commandment-keeping people are to be one. Satan will invent every device to separate those whom God is seeking to make one. But the Lord will reveal Himself as a God of judgment. We are working under the eyes of the heavenly host. There is a divine Watcher among us, inspecting all that is planned and carried on.” Testimonies, vol. 8, 165.
These lessons are adapted from the Sabbath School Lesson Quarterly, Pacific Press Publishing Association, Mountain View, California, October, 1912.