This We Believe
June 26 – July 2, 2022
“The law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul; the testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple.” Psalm 19:7
Study Help: The Great Controversy, 433–450
“Without the law, men have no just conception of the purity and holiness of God or of their own guilt and uncleanness.” The Great Controversy, 468
1 A TRANSCRIPT OF GOD’S CHARACTER
1.a. What is declared about the law of God, the ten commandments, and why is it so important for us? Psalm 119:142, 151, 172
Note: “Christ came to our world to represent the character of God as it is represented in His holy law; for His law is a transcript of His character. Christ was both the law and the gospel. The angel that proclaims the everlasting gospel proclaims the law of God; for the gospel of salvation brings men to obedience of the law, whereby their characters are formed after the divine similitude.” Selected Messages, Book 2, 106
“The word of the only true God is infallible. Infinite wisdom, holiness, power, and love are blended in pointing us to the standard by which God measures character. … His law is the transcript of His character. It is the standard that all must reach if they would enter the kingdom of God. No one need walk in uncertainty.” In Heavenly Places, 137
1.b. Since God is immutable, and His law is a transcript of His character, for how long will His law exist? Matthew 5:17, 18
Note: “[T]his law [of God] will maintain its exalted character as long as the throne of Jehovah endures.” The Review and Herald, October 10, 1899
2 SATAN’S ENMITY AGAINST THE LAW
2.a. What is the object of Satan’s hatred which he began in heaven and pursues on earth? Revelation 12:17
Note: “Satan, with all his masterly power, has interposed himself between man and the law of God, that through falsehood and sophistry he may inspire men with the same rebellion against God and His law as actuates himself. Those whom he cannot deceive, he hates.” The Signs of the Times, November 14, 1895
2.b. Whom does Satan successfully use to war against the holy law of God? Revelation 3:9; Ephesians 2:2; 2 Timothy 3:13
Note: “Satan has a large confederacy, his church. Christ calls them the synagogue of Satan because the members are the children of sin. The members of Satan’s church have been constantly working to cast off the divine law, and confuse the distinction between good and evil. Satan is working with great power in and through the children of disobedience to exalt treason and apostasy as truth and loyalty.” Testimonies to Ministers and Gospel Workers, 16
“There is enmity against the commandments of God in the hearts of those who claim sanctification and refuse to acknowledge the binding obligation of the law. Hatred arises in their hearts as soon as the law is mentioned. They profess to believe that the law is abolished. But if the law is abolished, what is the standard by which we shall be judged before the judgment seat of Christ? This work of belittling the law is the work of the great deceiver. If Satan can persuade men that the God of the universe has no law by which He governs them, then he can set up a standard of his own, and turn men into the path of transgression and destruction.” The Signs of the Times, February 10, 1888
“Satan’s work in our world today is to destroy the moral image of God in man, by making void the divine law; and our enemies are inspired by his spirit. By casting aside God’s great standard of character, he can deprave human nature and win men and women to his standard; for, ‘Where no law is, there is no transgression.’ With what triumph, then, he watches the professedly Christian world, as they earnestly do the very work he is doing.” The Review and Herald, January 26, 1897
3 THE STANDARD OF JUDGMENT
3.a. After many years of experience in transgression, what was the final conclusion of King Solomon? Ecclesiastes 12:13; Proverbs 28:9. What must we realize about the law of God?
Note: “The law of God is a transcript of His character; it is the standard of righteousness. … Man is required to render obedience to the revealed will of God in the smallest requirement of the law. …
“The law of God is the foundation of His government, and is exactly what is needed to preserve life and righteousness. Every principle of the law emanates from the Infinite God, and man will fail in his duty to God and his neighbor unless he believes and weaves the principles of the law into his life. Without faith it is impossible to please God, for it is through faith that we may render obedience to the law.” The Signs of the Times, February 26, 1894
“The law of God is the great standard of righteousness, and it will measure every man’s profession and progress. It is a mirror which discovers the defects of our characters, and shows us the requirements of God. It is holy and just and good.” Ibid., March 30, 1888
“The ten commandments, Thou shalt, and Thou shalt not, are ten promises, assured to us if we render obedience to the law governing the universe. ‘If ye love Me, keep My commandments’ (John 14:15). Here is the sum and substance of the law of God. The terms of salvation for every son and daughter of Adam are here outlined.” “Ellen G. White Comments,” The Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary, Vol. 1, 1105
3.b. By what standard will every person be judged in the heavenly court? Ecclesiastes 12:14; James 2:11, 12
Note: “God has a law, and it is the great standard of righteousness. Everyone who has presumed upon the mercy of God, and practiced iniquity, will be judged according to his works. God has warned you to depart from all iniquity. He has commanded you individually to resist the devil, not to entertain him as an honored guest.” Testimonies to Ministers and Gospel Workers, 448
“Men may close their eyes to the plainest truths in the word of God, they may trample His law under their feet; but the law, instituted in the beginning, proclaimed from Sinai, and engraven on tables of stone, will judge them in the last day.” The Signs of the Times, August 5, 1886
“The law of God is the standard by which the characters and the lives of men will be tested in the judgment.” The Great Controversy, 482
4 WILLING OBEDIENCE
4.a. When the rich young ruler asked Jesus what to do to inherit eternal life, what condition did the Lord present? Matthew 19:16, 17; Luke 18:18–20
Note: “The condition of eternal life is now just what it always has been—just what it was in paradise before the fall of our first parents—perfect obedience to the law of God, perfect righteousness. If eternal life were granted on any condition short of this, then the happiness of the whole universe would be imperiled.” Steps to Christ, 62
“We are to seek for the pearl of great price, but not in worldly marts or in worldly ways. The price we are required to pay is not gold or silver, for this belongs to God. Abandon the idea that temporal or spiritual advantages will win for you salvation. God calls for your willing obedience. He asks you to give up your sins.” Christ’s Object Lessons, 117
4.b. What kind of obedience should be manifested by a true child of God? Isaiah 1:19. How can we demonstrate that we really love God? 1 John 2:3, 4; 5:2, 3
Note: “The religion that comes from God is the only religion that will lead to God. In order to serve Him aright, we must be born of the divine Spirit. This will purify the heart and renew the mind, giving us a new capacity for knowing and loving God. It will give us a willing obedience to all His requirements. This is true worship.” The Desire of Ages, 189
“Willing obedience to God’s requirements gives vital energy and power to the soul. A work enduring as the sun is done for the worker as well as for those for whom he labors. However limited the capacity of the one who engages in this work, the labor which he performs in his humble sphere will be acceptable to God.” Testimonies, Vol. 4, 613
“Those who dishonor God by transgressing His law may talk sanctification; but it is of the same value, and just as acceptable, as was the offering of Cain. Obedience to the commandments of God is the only true sign of sanctification. … Our Saviour speaks so plainly that no one need fail to understand that true love will always produce obedience. Obedience is the sign of true love. Christ and the Father are one, and those who in truth receive Christ will love God as the great center of their adoration and will also love one another; and in so doing they will keep the law.” The Review and Herald, October 26, 1897
5 THE UNCHANGEABLE LAW OF GOD
5.a. What is the greatest proof that God does not change His law? Malachi 3:6, first part; James 1:17; Luke 16:17
Note: “Satan declared that mercy destroyed justice, that the death of Christ abrogated [overturned] the Father’s law. Had it been possible for the law to be changed or abrogated, then Christ need not have died. But to abrogate the law would be to immortalize transgression, and place the world under Satan’s control. It was because the law was changeless, because man could be saved only through obedience to its precepts, that Jesus was lifted up on the cross.” The Desire of Ages, 762, 763
“If God could have changed one iota of His law, Jesus need not have come to our world and died. But our Saviour, who was equal with God Himself, came into our world and suffered the death upon the cross, to give man another probation.” The Review and Herald, June 10, 1890
“It was to atone for man’s transgression of the law that Christ laid down His life. Could the law have been changed or set aside, then Christ need not have died. By His life on earth He honored the law of God. By His death He established it. He gave His life as a sacrifice, not to destroy God’s law, not to create a lower standard, but that justice might be maintained, that the law might be shown to be immutable, that it might stand fast forever.” Christ’s Object Lessons, 314
5.b. Where was the law written, and by whom? What is its meaning? Exodus 31:18; Romans 3:20. How long are its principles to endure? Psalm 89:34
Note: “God’s law is unchangeable; and though by human beings it has been slighted, scorned, and rejected, it will ever stand as firm as the throne of Jehovah.” The Review and Herald, September 24, 1901
PERSONAL REVIEW QUESTIONS
1 How does the law of God provide security and stability to our life?
2 What is Satan’s strategy in his rebellion against God and His law?
3 Why is there need of a standard in the day of judgment?
4 Since we are saved by faith, not works, why is obedience important?
5 How does the cross of Christ relate to the law of God?
Copyright 2000, Reformation Herald Publishing Association, 5240 Hollins Road, Roanoke, Virginia 24019-5048, U.S.A.