Bible Study Guides – Planning Victorious Families

May 19, 2019 – May 25, 2019

Key Text

“How shall we order the child, and how shall we do unto him?” (Judges 13:12).

Study Help: The Ministry of Healing, 371–378; Selected Messages, Book 2, 420–433.


“In cultivating that which is best in themselves, parents are exerting an influence to mold society and to uplift future generations. …

“Even before the birth of the child, the preparation should begin that will enable it to fight successfully the battle against evil.” The Ministry of Healing, 371.



  • What was the instruction given by the angel of the Lord to Manoah’s wife, and how did she and her husband both reveal their zeal to honor the Lord? Judges 13:2–12.

Note: “Let every mother go often to her Saviour with the prayer, ‘Teach us, how shall we order the child, and what shall we do unto him?’ Let her heed the instruction which God has given in His word, and wisdom will be given her as she shall have need.” Patriarchs and Prophets, 573.

“Upon fathers as well as mothers rests a responsibility for the child’s earlier as well as its later training, and for both parents the demand for careful and thorough preparation is most urgent. Before taking upon themselves the possibilities of fatherhood and motherhood, men and women should become acquainted with the laws of physical development—with physiology and hygiene, with the bearing of prenatal influences, with the laws of heredity, sanitation, dress, exercise, and the treatment of disease; they should also understand the laws of mental development and moral training.” Education, 276.



  • What counsel was repeated to both parents? Why? Judges 13:13, 14, 24.

Note: “The well-being of the child will be affected by the habits of the mother. Her appetites and passions are to be controlled by principle. There is something for her to shun, something for her to work against, if she fulfills God’s purpose for her in giving her a child. If before the birth of her child she is self-indulgent, if she is selfish, impatient, and exacting, these traits will be reflected in the disposition of the child. Thus many children have received as a birthright almost unconquerable tendencies to evil.

“But if the mother unswervingly adheres to right principles, if she is temperate and self-denying, if she is kind, gentle, and unselfish, she may give her child these same precious traits of character.” The Ministry of Healing, 372, 373.

“It was not enough that Samson, the child who was to deliver Israel, should have a good legacy at his birth. This was to be followed by careful training. From infancy he was to be trained to habits of strict temperance.” Ibid., 379.

  • Why is the privilege of parenthood a very solemn matter? Psalm 127:3.

Note: “The father should bear in mind that the treatment of his wife before the birth of his offspring will materially affect the disposition of the mother during that period, and will have very much to do with the character developed by the child after its birth. Many fathers have been so anxious to obtain property fast that higher considerations have been sacrificed, and some men have been criminally neglectful of the mother and her offspring, and too frequently the lives of both have been sacrificed to the strong desire to accumulate wealth. Many do not immediately suffer this heavy penalty for their wrong doing, and are asleep as to the result of their course. The condition of the wife is sometimes no better than that of a slave, and sometimes she is equally guilty with the husband, of squandering physical strength, to obtain means to live fashionably. It is a crime for such to have children, for their offspring will often be deficient in physical, mental, and moral worth, and will bear the miserable, close, selfish impress of their parents, and the world will be cursed with their meanness.” Selected Messages, Book 2, 428, 429.



  • Name some keys to enjoying greater peace in family life. Philippians 4:5–8.

Note: “The mother, before the birth of her children, is often permitted to labor beyond her strength. Her burdens and cares are seldom lessened, and that period, which should be to her of all others, a time of rest, is one of fatigue, sadness, and gloom. By too great exertion on her part, she deprives her offspring of that nutrition which nature has provided for it, and by heating her blood, she imparts to it, a bad quality of blood. The offspring is robbed of its vitality, robbed of physical and mental strength. The father should study how to make the mother happy. He should not allow himself to come to his home with a clouded brow.” Selected Messages, Book 2, 427, 428.

“It is the duty of men and women to act with reason in regard to their labor. They should not exhaust their energies unnecessarily, for by doing this, they not only bring suffering upon themselves but, by their errors, bring anxiety, weariness, and suffering upon those they love. What calls for such an amount of labor? Intemperance in eating, and in drinking, and the desire for wealth have led to this intemperance in labor.” Ibid., 429.

“Mothers, let your countenance be full of sunshine. Smile, if you can, and the infant’s mind and heart will reflect the light of your countenance.” The Adventist Home, 436.

  • Why did Israel urgently need to produce valiant men, and how does a similar need exist today? Judges 13:1; Jeremiah 2:12–14; 1 Corinthians 3:3.

Note: “The greatest want of the world is the want of men—men who will not be bought or sold, men who in their inmost souls are true and honest, men who do not fear to call sin by its right name, men whose conscience is as true to duty as the needle to the pole, men who will stand for the right though the heavens fall.

“But such a character is not the result of accident; it is not due to special favors or endowments of Providence. A noble character is the result of self-discipline, of the subjection of the lower to the higher nature—the surrender of self for the service of love to God and man.” Education, 57.



  • What request did Samson make of his parents? Judges 14:1–3. Despite their good intentions, what perils might Samson’s parents have overlooked? 1 Corinthians 15:33.

 Note: “The town of Zorah being near the country of the Philistines, Samson came to mingle with them on friendly terms. Thus in his youth intimacies sprang up, the influence of which darkened his whole life.” Patriarchs and Prophets, 562.

“Great care should be taken by Christian youth in the formation of friendships and in the choice of companions. Take heed, lest what you now think to be pure gold turns out to be base metal. Worldly associations tend to place obstructions in the way of your service to God, and many souls are ruined by unhappy unions … with those who can never elevate or ennoble.” Messages to Young People, 436.

“Fathers and mothers should feel that a duty devolves upon them to guide the affections of the youth, that they may be placed upon those who will be suitable companions. They should feel it a duty, by their own teaching and example, with the assisting grace of God, to so mold the character of the children from their earliest years that they will be pure and noble, and will be attracted to the good and true. Like attracts like; like appreciates like. Let the love for truth and  purity and goodness be early implanted in the soul, and the youth will seek the society of those who possess these characteristics.” Ibid., 466.

“While we shall not cease to warn and entreat and try to present the truth to the parents who are unbelievers, to mix and mingle with them in association will be to the ruin of your children.” Manuscript Releases, vol. 9, 74.

“Fathers and mothers, do you realize the importance of the responsibility resting on you? Do you allow your children to associate with other children without being present to know what kind of education they are receiving? Do not allow them to be alone with other children.” Child Guidance, 114.

  • Who was responsible for the unhappiness in Samson’s life? Galatians 6:5, 7.

Note: “Had Samson as faithfully obeyed the divine commands as faithfully as his parents had done, his would have been a nobler and happier destiny. But association with idolaters corrupted him.” Patriarchs and Prophets, 562.



  • Why does God forbid marriage of believers to unbelievers? What have been the results of such alliances? Judges 3:5–8; Deuteronomy 7:3; Nehemiah 13:23–26.

Note: “Never marry an unbeliever.” Our High Calling, 257.

“The Lord has in His word plainly instructed His people not to unite themselves with those who have not His love and fear before them. Such companions will seldom be satisfied with the love and respect which are justly theirs. They will constantly seek to gain from the God-fearing wife or husband some favor which shall involve a disregard of the divine requirements. To a godly man, and to the church with which he is connected, a worldly wife or a worldly friend is as a spy in the camp, who will watch every opportunity to betray the servant of Christ, and expose him to the enemy’s attacks.” The Signs of the Times, October 6, 1881.

  • What should Christians prayerfully consider when seeking a spouse? 2 Corinthians 6:14–18; 1 Corinthians 7:39.

Note: “In ancient times marriage engagements were generally made by the parents, and this was the custom among those who worshiped God. None were required to marry those whom they could not love; but in the bestowal of their affections the youth were guided by the judgment of their experienced, God-fearing parents. It was regarded as a dishonor to parents, and even a crime, to pursue a course contrary to this.” Patriarchs and Prophets, 171.



1     What knowledge better equips future parents to give children a strong foundation?

2    What types of circumstances make childbearing inadvisable?

3    Explain the secret of how God-fearing integrity is developed.

4    Why is it so important to be vigilant about associations formed in youth?

5    What guidelines are important in choosing a spouse?


© 2018, Reformation Herald Publishing Association, 5240 Hollins Road, Roanoke, Virginia 24019-5048, U.S.A.

Bible Study Guides – Active Trust

May 12, 2019 – May 18, 2019

Key Text

“And Gideon said unto them [the men of Israel], I will not rule over you, neither shall my son rule over you: the Lord shall rule over you” (Judges 8:23).

Study Help: Patriarchs and Prophets, 550–559.


“When sorely tried, do not place your trust in the arm of flesh, but in the living God. Have faith in the One who is by your side ready to tell you what steps to take in times of perplexity and trial. He has everything marked out.” Sermons and Talks, vol. 2, 178.



  • Out of 10,000 who drank water before battle, how many took their mission seriously, and what result did God promise them? Judges 7:6–9.

Note: “Not only did they [the small remnant] possess courage and self-control, but they were men of faith. They had not defiled themselves by idolatry.” The Signs of the Times, June 30, 1881.

“The Lord is just as willing to work through human efforts now, and to accomplish great things through weak instrumentalities. It is essential to have an intelligent knowledge of the truth; for how else could we meet its wily opponents? The Bible must be studied, not alone for the doctrines it teaches, but for its practical lessons. You should never be surprised, you should never be without your armor on. Be prepared for any emergency, for any call of duty. Be waiting, watching for every opportunity to present the truth familiar with the prophecies, familiar with the lessons of Christ. But do not trust in well prepared arguments. Argument alone is not enough. God must be sought on your knees; you must go forth to meet the people through the power and influence of His Spirit.

“Act promptly. God would have you minute men, as were the men who composed Gideon’s army.” The Review and Herald, July 1, 1884.



  • What danger comes to Christian organizations from their contact with the world? Matthew 7:13,14; Exodus 23:12; Romans 12:2; James 4:4.

Note: “Some will urge that if religious teaching is to be made prominent our schools will become unpopular; that those who are not of our faith will not patronize them. Very well; then let them go to other schools, where they will find a system of education that suits their taste. It is Satan’s purpose by these considerations to prevent the attainment of the object for which our schools were established. Hindered by his devices, the managers reason after the manner of the world and copy its plans and imitate its customs. Many have so far shown their lack of wisdom from above as to join with the enemies of God and the truth in providing worldly entertainments for the students. In doing this they bring upon themselves the frown of God, for they mislead the youth and do a work for Satan. This work, with all its results, they must meet at the bar of God.

“Those who pursue such a course show that they cannot be trusted. … When the Lord requires us to be distinct and peculiar, how can we crave popularity or seek to imitate the customs and practices of the world? …

“To lower the standard in order to secure popularity and an increase of numbers, and then to make this increase a cause of rejoicing, shows great blindness. If numbers were an evidence of success, Satan might claim the preeminence; for in this world his followers are largely in the majority. It is the degree of moral power pervading a school that is a test of its prosperity. It is the virtue, intelligence, and piety of the people composing our schools, not their numbers, that should be a source of joy and thankfulness.” Testimonies, vol. 6, 142, 143.

“Many who occupy responsible positions in the church of God, are sacrificing their integrity to secure the favor of the ungodly. A strong current is sweeping downward, and they decide that it is easier to float with the tide than to row against it. Like the children of Israel, they sacrifice the blessings of God by their indolence and spiritual sloth. Many set up idols in their hearts—idols of selfishness, idols of pride, and love of display. Eternal things lose their value. Withdraw the influences which God has provided to preserve and strengthen our spirituality, and it decays and dies. We must be continually seeking to draw near to God, and to learn His will.” The Signs of the Times, June 30, 1881.



  • In God’s work today, what should we learn from the unusual strategy given to Gideon’s army? Judges 7:12–22.

Note: “It is a dangerous thing for men to resist the Spirit of truth and grace and righteousness, because its manifestations are not according to their ideas, and have not come in the line of their methodical plans. The Lord works in His own way, and according to His own devising. Let men pray that they may be divested of self, and may be in harmony with heaven. … In the instruction that the Lord gave Gideon when he was about to fight with the Midianites—that he should go out against his foes with an army of three hundred blowing trumpets, and carrying empty pitchers in their hands, and shouting, ‘The sword of the Lord, and of Gideon’ (Judges 7:18, 20, last part)—these precise, methodical, formal men would see nothing but inconsistency and confusion. They would start back with determined protest and resistance. They would have held long controversies to show the inconsistency and the dangers that would accompany the carrying on of the warfare in such an extreme way, and in their finite judgment they would pronounce all such movements as utterly ridiculous and unreasonable.” “Ellen G. White Comments,” The Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary, vol. 2, 1004.

  • Explain the benefit of Gideon’s tactfulness toward his brethren. Judges 7:23–25; 8:1–3.

Note: “They [the men of Ephraim] were jealous and angry, as though Gideon had been led by his own will and judgment. They did not discern God’s hand in the triumph of Israel, they did not appreciate His power and mercy in their deliverance; and this very fact showed them unworthy to be chosen as His special instruments. …

“The spirit of jealousy might easily have been fanned into a quarrel that would have caused strife and bloodshed; but Gideon’s modest answer soothed the anger of the men of Ephraim, and they returned in peace to their homes. Firm and uncompromising where principle was concerned, and in war a ‘mighty man of valor’ (Judges 6:12, last part), Gideon displayed also a spirit of courtesy that is rarely witnessed.” Patriarchs and Prophets, 554, 555.



  • How was Gideon’s attitude exemplary in refusing to violate the principles of God’s theocracy? Judges 8:22, 23.
  • Despite his unassuming modesty, what mistake did Gideon then make, and what warning should we heed from this? Judges 8:24–27.

Note: “The season of inactivity that succeeds a great struggle is often fraught with greater danger than is the period of conflict. To this danger Gideon was now exposed. A spirit of unrest was upon him. Hitherto he had been content to fulfill the directions given him from God; but now, instead of waiting for divine guidance, he began to plan for himself. When the armies of the Lord have gained a signal victory, Satan will redouble his efforts to overthrow the work of God. Thus thoughts and plans were suggested to the mind of Gideon, by which the people of Israel were led astray.

“Because he had been commanded to offer sacrifice upon the rock where the Angel appeared to him, Gideon concluded that he had been appointed to officiate as a priest. Without waiting for the divine sanction, he determined to provide a suitable place, and to institute a system of worship similar to that carried on at the tabernacle. With the strong popular feeling in his favor he found no difficulty in carrying out his plan. At his request all the earrings of gold taken from the Midianites were given him as his share of the spoil. The people also collected many other costly materials, together with the richly adorned garments of the princes of Midian. From the material thus furnished, Gideon constructed an ephod and a breastplate, in imitation of those worn by the high priest. His course proved a snare to himself and his family, as well as to Israel. The unauthorized worship led many of the people finally to forsake the Lord altogether, to serve idols. After Gideon’s death great numbers, among whom were his own family, joined in this apostasy. The people were led away from God by the very man who had once overthrown their idolatry.

“There are few who realize how far-reaching is the influence of their words and acts. How often the errors of parents produce the most disastrous effects upon their children and children’s children, long after the actors themselves have been laid in the grave.” Patriarchs and Prophets, 555, 556.



  • What happened after Gideon’s death? Judges 8:28, 33–35. Where does our safety lie today?

Note: “He [Gideon] thought himself the least in his father’s house. Human wisdom would not have selected him; but God saw in Gideon a man of integrity and moral courage. He was distrustful of self, and willing to listen to the teachings of God, and carry out His purposes. The Lord is not dependent upon men of high position, of great intellect, or extensive knowledge. Such men are frequently proud and self-sufficient. They feel themselves competent to devise and execute plans without counsel from God. They separate themselves from the true Vine, and hence become dry and fruitless, as withered branches.

“The Lord would put to shame the vaunting of men. He will give success to the feeblest efforts, the most unpromising methods, when divinely appointed, and entered upon with humility and trust. God will not test our faith beyond endurance. He will give us sufficient evidence, that we may, in our weakness, lean upon the arm of His strength, and trust wholly in His power. Talents, education, and influence, may, under the sanctifying power of the Holy Spirit, be employed in the service of God; but Satan is more often served by them, than is Jesus Christ.” The Signs of the Times, June 30, 1881.

“Those who stand in the highest positions may lead astray. The wisest err; the strongest may falter and stumble. There is need that light from above should be constantly shed upon our pathway. Our only safety lies in trusting our way implicitly to Him who has said, ‘Follow Me.’ ” Patriarchs and Prophets, 556.



1     Describe our duties as “minutemen” for God today.

2    What mistake is often made in denominational institutions for the public?

3    Why did God choose such a simple strategy to defeat the Midianites?

4    Even for those who seem humble, what mistake of Gideon can be a snare?

5    Why are we warned against trusting in the arm of flesh?

Bible Study Guides – Reviving a Remnant

May 5, 2019 – May 11, 2019

Key Text

“Thou therefore endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ. No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life: that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier” (2 Timothy 2:3, 4).

 Study Help:  Patriarchs and Prophets, 547–549.


“Follow step after step in the path of duty. Steep places may have to be climbed, but go forward in the path of humility, of faith and self-denial, leaving the clouds of doubt behind you.” Selected Messages, Book 2, 272.



  • After Gideon had disposed of his father’s altar to Baal by night, how did the men of the city react the next morning? Judges 6:28–30.
  • How did Gideon’s father respond? Why? Judges 6:31, 32.

Note: “Gideon had told his father, Joash, of the Angel’s visit, and the promise that Israel should be delivered. He also related to him the divine command to destroy the altar of Baal. The Spirit of God moved upon the heart of Joash. He saw that the gods whom he had worshiped had no power even to save themselves from utter destruction and hence they could not protect their worshipers. When the idolatrous multitude clamored for the death of Gideon, Joash fearlessly stood in his defense, and endeavored to show the people how powerless and unworthy of trust or adoration were their gods. [Judges 6:31 quoted.]

“He reminded them that the penalty of death would justly rest upon themselves instead of Gideon, for they had broken the law of God against idolatry.” The Signs of the Times, June 23, 1881.



  • How did the putting away of idols motivate progress? Judges 6:33–35.

Note: “The whole transaction [of destroying the idols], with the stirring appeals of Gideon, produced a powerful effect upon the people of Ophrah. All thoughts of violence were dismissed; and when, moved by the Spirit of the Lord, Gideon sounded the trumpet of war, they were among the first to gather to him. He then sent messengers throughout his own tribe of Manasseh, and also to Asher, Zebulun, and Naphtali, and all cheerfully obeyed the call.” The Signs of the Times, June 23, 1881.

  • What can we learn from Gideon’s prayers requesting confirmation from the Lord? What prompted his petitions? Judges 6:36–40.

Note: “Gideon deeply felt his own insufficiency for the great work before him. He dared not place himself at the head of the army without positive evidence that God had called him to this work, and that He would be with him. …

“Unbelief suggested that wool naturally absorbs moisture when there is any in the air, and that the test was not decisive. Hence, he [Gideon] asked a renewal of the sign, humbly pleading that unbelief might not move the Lord to anger. His request was granted. …

“Before honor is humility. The Lord can use most effectually those who are most sensible of their own unworthiness and inefficiency. He will teach them to exercise the courage of faith. He will make them strong by uniting their weakness to His might, wise by connecting their ignorance with His wisdom.

“God will accept the services of all who will work in obedience to His will, who will not for any consideration bring a stain upon the conscience, who will not permit any influence to lead them from the path of duty. …

“The teachable and trusting ones, having a right purpose and a pure heart, need not wait for great occasions or for extraordinary abilities before they employ their powers. They should not stand irresolute, questioning, and fearing what the world will say or think of them. We are not to weary ourselves with anxious care, but to go on, quietly performing with faithfulness the work which God assigns us, and leaving the result wholly with Him.” The Signs of the Times, June 23, 1881.



  • What law had been established in ancient Israel, revealing God’s compassion for families during times of war? Deuteronomy 20:5–8.

Note: “It had been made a law in Israel that before they went to battle, the following proclamation should be sounded throughout the army: [Deuteronomy 20:5–8 quoted]. What a striking illustration is this of the tender, pitying love of Christ! He who instituted the relations of life and the ties of kindred, made special provision that these be not too widely broken. He would have none go forth to battle unwillingly. This proclamation also sets forth in a forcible manner the influence which may be exerted by one man who is deficient in faith and courage, and further shows the effect of our thoughts and feelings upon our own course of action.” The Signs of the Times, June 30, 1881.

  • Now that Gideon had been assured of God’s direction in his venture, how did the Lord again amaze him? Why? Judges 7:1, 2. What effect does pride have upon us today?

Note: “Because his numbers were so few compared with those of the enemy, Gideon had refrained from making the usual proclamation [of Deuteronomy 20:5–8]. He was filled with astonishment at the declaration that his army was too large. But the Lord saw the pride and unbelief existing in the hearts of His people. Aroused by the stirring appeals of Gideon, they had readily enlisted; but many were filled with fear when they saw the multitudes of the Midianites. Yet, had Israel triumphed, those very ones would have taken the glory to themselves instead of ascribing the victory to God.

“Gideon obeyed the Lord’s direction, and with a heavy heart he saw twenty-two thousand, or more than two thirds of his entire force, depart for their homes.” Patriarchs and Prophets, 549.

“Pride of heart is a fearful trait of character. ‘Pride goeth before destruction’ (Proverbs 16:18, first part). This is true in the family, the church, and the nation.” The Faith I Live By, 68.



  • After Gideon’s army was reduced to a mere 10,000, what did God tell him to do before going to battle? Why? Judges 7:4, 5.

Note: “The people were led down to the waterside, expecting to make an immediate advance upon the enemy. A few hastily took a little water in the hand and sucked it up as they went on; but nearly all bowed upon their knees, and leisurely drank from the surface of the stream. Those who took of the water in their hands were but three hundred out of ten thousand; yet these were selected; all the rest were permitted to return to their homes.

“By the simplest means character is often tested. Those who in time of peril were intent upon supplying their own wants were not the men to be trusted in an emergency. The Lord has no place in His work for the indolent and self-indulgent. The men of His choice were the few who would not permit their own wants to delay them in the discharge of duty.” Patriarchs and Prophets, 549.

  • How does the actual principle God was teaching likewise apply to us in His church today? Philippians 2:4; 3:13, 14.

Note: “Success does not depend upon strength or numbers. God can deliver by few as well as by many. A large church is not necessarily a strong church. Some of its members may be cherishing selfishness, pride, or unbelief; some may be dishonest, others corrupt in heart and life. All these are a source of weakness to the church. They bring the frown of God upon His people, and the great adversary will work through them to advance his own cause.

“Anciently, those whose worldly interests would draw their hearts from the work of God, were bidden to return to their homes. It were better for the cause of truth today, if those whose attention is absorbed with their own private interests, would separate from the work of God, and give themselves to the things in which their hearts delight. Then they would not, by their wrong example, exert so dangerous an influence upon others.

“God is honored, not so much by the great number, as by the character of those who serve Him.” The Signs of the Times, June 30, 1881.



  • What is God’s plan for all enlisted in His spiritual army? 2 Timothy 2:3–5.

Note: “We are not placed in this world merely to care for ourselves, but we are required to aid in the great work of salvation, thus imitating the self-denying, self-sacrificing, useful life of Christ.” Testimonies, vol. 1, 325.

“True Christian character is marked by a singleness of purpose, an indomitable determination, which refuses to yield to worldly influences, which will aim at nothing short of the Bible standard. If men will permit themselves to become discouraged in the service of God, the great adversary will present abundant reasons to turn them from the plain path of duty to one of ease and irresponsibility. Those who can be bribed or seduced, discouraged or terrified, will be of no service in the Christian warfare. Those who set their affections on worldly treasures or worldly honors, will not push the battle against principalities and powers, and spiritual wickedness in high places.

“All who would be soldiers of the cross of Christ, must gird on the armor and prepare for conflict. They should not be intimidated by threats; or terrified by dangers. They must be cautious in peril, yet firm and brave in facing the foe and doing battle for God. The consecration of Christ’s follower must be complete. Father, mother, wife, children, houses, lands, everything, must be held secondary to the work and cause of God. He must be willing to bear patiently, cheerfully, joyfully, whatever in God’s providence he may be called to suffer. His final reward will be to share with Christ the throne of immortal glory.” The Signs of the Times, June 30, 1881.



1     How can I appeal to someone in apostasy as Gideon did to Joash?

2    Why was Gideon the one assigned to the task of delivering God’s people?

3    Why did God want the 32,000 to be reduced to 10,000?

4    Explain how the test about how the men drank water can be applied today.

5    What does it mean to be a spiritual soldier for a kingdom not of this world?

Categories Uncategorized Tags

Bible Study Guides – A Time of Spiritual Crisis

April 28, 2019 – May 4, 2019

Key Text

“Wherefore, my dearly beloved, flee from idolatry” (1 Corinthians 10:14).

Study Help: Patriarchs and Prophets, 543–547.


“There was ever a remnant who were true to Jehovah; and from time to time the Lord raised up faithful and valiant men to put down idolatry and to deliver the Israelites from their enemies.” Patriarchs and Prophets, 545.



  • In the settlement of Canaan, what did Israel neglect to do? Judges 1:28–33.

Note: “The Lord had faithfully fulfilled, on His part, the promises made to Israel; Joshua had broken the power of the Canaanites, and had distributed the land to the tribes. It only remained for them, trusting in the assurance of divine aid, to complete the work of dispossessing the inhabitants of the land. But this they failed to do. By entering into league with the Canaanites they directly transgressed the command of God, and thus failed to fulfill the condition on which He had promised to place them in possession of Canaan.” Patriarchs and Prophets, 543.

  • What shows that this was a very serious matter? Exodus 23:24, 25.

Note: “From the very first communication of God with them at Sinai, they [Israel] had been warned against idolatry. …

“But regardless of their high destiny, they chose the course of ease and self-indulgence; they let slip their opportunities for completing the conquest of the land.” Patriarchs and Prophets, 543, 544.



  • By failing to do their duty before God, what happened to Israel, and how was this a fulfilment of prophecy? Psalm 106:35–40; Numbers 33:55.

Note: “Until the generation that had received instruction from Joshua became extinct, idolatry made little headway; but the parents had prepared the way for the apostasy of their children. The disregard of the Lord’s restrictions on the part of those who came in possession of Canaan sowed seed of evil that continued to bring forth bitter fruit for many generations. The simple habits of the Hebrews had secured them physical health; but association with the heathen led to the indulgence of appetite and passion, which gradually lessened physical strength and enfeebled the mental and moral powers. By their sins the Israelites were separated from God; His strength was removed from them, and they could no longer prevail against their enemies. Thus they were brought into subjection to the very nations that through God they might have subdued.” Patriarchs and Prophets, 544, 545.

  • What step was the Lord finally compelled to take, and why should we take this matter seriously in our day? Judges 2:12; Psalm 78:58, 60, 61.

Note: “The most grievous sin of idolatry exists in the church. Anything that interposes between the Christian and the whole hearted service to God, takes the form of an idol, and the most grievous sin of idolatry is idolatry itself.” The Paulson Collection, 343.

“Like ancient Israel the church has dishonored her God by departing from the light, neglecting her duties, and abusing her high and exalted privilege of being peculiar and holy in character. Her members have violated their covenant to live for God and Him only. They have joined with the selfish and world-loving.” Testimonies, vol. 2, 441, 442.

“God classes as idolaters those who trust in their own wisdom, their own devising, depending for success on their riches and power, striving to strengthen themselves by alliance with men whom the world calls great, but who fail to discern the binding claims of His law.” The Review and Herald, March 15, 1906.



  • What appeals are made in the Christian era regarding idolatry? 1 Corinthians 10:14; Galatians 5:19–21. Describe the startling vision shown to Lord’s messenger about the perils of this evil.

Note: “A large company of heathen idolaters bore a black banner, upon which were figures of the sun, moon, and stars. This company seemed to be very fierce and angry. I was then shown another company bearing a pure white banner, upon which was written, ‘Purity and holiness unto the Lord.’ Their countenances were marked with firmness and heavenly resignation. I saw the heathen idolaters approach them, and there was a great slaughter. The Christians melted away before them; and yet the Christian company pressed the more closely together, and held the banner more firmly. As many fell, others rallied around the banner and filled their places.

“I saw the company of idolaters consulting together. Failing to make the Christians yield, they agreed to another plan. I saw them lower their banner and then approach that firm Christian company and make propositions to them. At first their propositions were utterly refused. Then I saw the Christian company consulting together. Some said that they would lower the banner, accept the propositions, and save their lives, and at last they could gain strength to raise their banner among the heathen. A few, however, would not yield to this plan, but firmly chose to die holding their banner rather than to lower it. Then I saw many lower the banner and unite with the heathen; but the firm and steadfast would again seize it and bear it on high. I saw that persons were continually leaving the company of those who bore the pure banner, and were uniting with the idolaters under the black banner, to persecute those bearing the white banner. Many were slain, yet the white banner was held high, and believers were raised up to rally around it.” Early Writings, 211, 212.

  • Name another common form of idolatry to be shunned. Colossians 3:5, 6.

Note: “All covetousness is condemned as idolatry. All selfish indulgence is an offense in God’s sight.” Christ’s Object Lessons, 261.



  • What bitter consequences followed Israel’s idolatry during the time of the judges? Judges 6:1–5.

Note: “The wild, fierce inhabitants of the desert, ‘as locusts for multitude’ (Judges 6:5, R.V.), came swarming into the land, with their flocks and herds. Like a devouring plague they spread over the country, from the river Jordan to the Philistine plain. They came as soon as the harvests began to ripen, and remained until the last fruits of the earth had been gathered. They stripped the fields of their increase and robbed and maltreated the inhabitants and then returned to the deserts. Thus the Israelites dwelling in the open country were forced to abandon their homes, and to congregate in walled towns, to seek refuge in fortresses, or even to find shelter in caves and rocky fastnesses among the mountains.” Patriarchs and Prophets, 546.

  • What did the Israelites finally do, and what merciful response did they receive? Judges 6:6–10.

Note: “As the people in their distress gave heed to the Lord’s reproof, and confessed their sins, God again raised up a helper for them.” Patriarchs and Prophets, 546.

  • Whom did God raise up as the man of the hour? Why? Judges 6:11–14; Proverbs 4:26; Haggai 1:7.

Note: “As Gideon labored in secrecy and silence, he sadly pondered upon the condition of Israel and considered how the oppressor’s yoke might be broken from off his people.” Patriarchs and Prophets, 546.

“He whose mind is opened to the word of God will prayerfully consider every way of his feet, so that he may honor God and keep the way of the Lord.” That I May Know Him, 251.



  • What attitude should we learn from the spirit of Gideon when addressed by the Messenger of heaven? Judges 6:15, 22, 23.

Note: “When God sent His angels anciently to minister or communicate to individuals, and these persons learned that they had seen and talked with an angel, they were struck with awe and were afraid that they should die. They had so exalted views of the terrible majesty and power of God that they thought it would destroy them to be brought into close connection with one direct from His holy presence.” Testimonies, vol. 1, 410.

  • What important requirement did Gideon perform that was highly essential in order to begin the work of reformation among his people? Judges 6:24–27.

Note: “The deliverance of Israel was to be preceded by a solemn protest against the worship of Baal. Gideon must declare war upon idolatry before going out to battle with the enemies of his people.

“The divine direction was faithfully carried out. Knowing that he would be opposed if it were attempted openly, Gideon performed the work in secret; with the aid of his servants, accomplishing the whole in one night.” Patriarchs and Prophets, 547.



1     Why is it important to separate from known sources of temptation?

2    What specific sins caused the oppression from the Midianites?

3    Which is more dangerous—persecution from evil or compromise with evil?

4    At the crisis hour, what reveals the amazing mercy of our God?

5    What steps do I need to take in order to make a real reformation in my life?

Recipe – Creamy Steel-Cut Oats


1 14-oz. can light coconut milk

1 ½ cups water

1 cup uncooked steel-cut oats

dash sea salt



Pour can of coconut milk and water into pot; bring to low boil over high heat.

Add oats; stir. Immediately reduce heat to low. Gently simmer, covered, for 1 hour, stirring several times throughout cooking. Portion into bowls. Add desired garnishes: chopped medjool dates, raisins, shredded coconut, toasted walnut pieces, fresh fruit, etc. Creamy and delicious!

Food – Beta-Glucan & Oats

While you may know that the fiber in oatmeal is responsible for lowering cholesterol, as well as offering other health rewards, you may not know that it’s a very particular type of fiber called beta-glucan that’s responsible for the benefits.

Nutritionally beta-glucans trigger a cascade of events in the human body that help regulate the immune system, making it more efficient. Beta-glucans also stimulate white blood cells that bind to tumor cells and viruses and release chemicals to destroy these cells. Studies also show that beta-glucans reduced the incidence of infection in patients with high risk surgeries, as well as shortened intensive care unit stay and improved survival rate. Bottom line – of all the polysaccharides studied that act as immunostimulants, beta-glucans were found to be the most effective against infectious disease and cancer.

Beta-glucans have also been found to improve insulin response and restore the activity of gut organisms.

Beta-glucans form a viscous solution (gel) in the gut which slows digestion and absorption, giving a feeling of fullness for much longer and is the basis for many health benefits. This thick gel grabs cholesterol as it moves through the digestive system to prevent absorption, and then eliminates it from the body. Getting 3 grams of beta-glucan a day may help lower cholesterol levels by as much as 8 percent. One and a half cups of cooked oats provides 3 grams of beta-gluten.

Incorporate oats in granola, muffins, waffles, breads, crisps, cooked alone or with other grains in cereals, and in savory dishes to ensure an ample amount of beta-glucan in your daily diet.


Creamy Steel-cut Oats


1 14-oz. can light coconut milk

1 ½ cups water

1 cup uncooked steel-cut oats

dash sea salt


Pour can of coconut milk and water into pot; bring to low boil over high heat.

Add oats; stir. Immediately reduce heat to low. Gently simmer, covered, for 1 hour, stirring several times throughout cooking. Portion into bowls. Add desired garnishes: chopped medjool dates, raisins, shredded coconut, toasted walnut pieces, fresh fruit, etc. Creamy and delicious!

Life Sketches – Following Christ Regardless of the Cost

Have you given much thought whether you would stick to the truth, obey and follow the truth, even if it resulted in a decrease in your income or cost you in some other way? When that is the consequence of following truth, then the whole observing universe can find out whether or not you really love the truth.

During the three years the apostle Paul ministered in Ephesus, a large church was developed.  From that city the gospel spread to seven other cities in Asia. The apostle at that time thought it was time to make another missionary journey to visit the churches in Macedonia and Achaia, the area we call Greece today. His hope also was to preach the gospel in Rome. The church at Ephesus still demanded his presence; so he decided to remain there for a time. However, an event soon happened that hastened his departure. It was customary in Ephesus to devote the entire month of May to the worship of the great heathen goddess Diana. Universal honor had been given to this deity. The magnificence of her temple and her worship attracted an immense number of people from all over.

Festivities were conducted with great pomp and splendor and the heathen gods were represented by persons chosen for this purpose. These people were then regarded as objects for worship and were honored by processions and various religious rituals. There were musical contests and feats of athletes. Fierce combats were held of men and beasts for entertainment. Paul says, “If, in the manner of men, I have fought with beasts at Ephesus, what advantage is it to me? If the dead do not rise, ‘Let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we die’ ” (1 Corinthians 15:32)! Admiring crowds came to take part in the festivities which were held in the vast theaters. Certain men were chosen to conduct the grand celebrations. These were very wealthy men of the highest distinction in Asia and they were expected to defray the entire expense of the occasion. It was time when the whole city of Ephesus became a place of brilliant display and wild revelry. Imposing processions swept to the grand temple and the people gave themselves up to feasting and drunkenness and the vile practices that have always accompanied the worship of pagan idols.

This was a time of great trial to the people who had newly become Christians; they did not engage in the heathen festivities. They took seriously the first commandment that says, “You shall have no other gods before Me” (Exodus 20:3) and the second commandment that forbids the use of idols or images in worship (verses 4–6). So, the company of believers were an inharmonious note in all of the festivities that were going on and became the target of ridicule, reproach, and the victims of insult. Fully in accord with Scriptural instruction, Paul had taught against the use of any kinds of idols.

In 1 John, the 5th chapter, the apostle John says, “Little children, keep yourselves from idols” (verse 21). In other words, don’t have anything to do with idols. This message caused a perceptible falling off in attendance at the national festival and a decrease in the enthusiasm of the worshipers. The influence of Paul’s teachings had extended far beyond the actual number of people who had become Christians. There were many who had not openly accepted Christian doctrines but who were so far enlightened as to lose all confidence in the heathen gods.

Paul’s presence in the city called special attention to this fact, resulting in loud and bitter curses being uttered against him. There was yet another cause of dissatisfaction. It had been long customary among heathen nations to manufacture small images, or shrines, to represent their favorite objects of worship. Portable statues had been modeled after the image of Diana and they were widely circulated in the countries along the shores of the Mediterranean. There were also models of the temple enshrining an idol inside. These were all regarded as objects of worship and carried at the head of the processions, on journeys, and on military expeditions. Those people who were involved in this kind of industry found their profits diminishing and united in attributing the unwelcome change to Paul’s labors.

Acts 19:23–28 says, “About that time there arose a great commotion about the Way [that is, about the way of Christianity]. For a certain man named Demetrius, a silversmith, who made silver shrines of Diana, brought no small profit to the craftsmen. He called them together with the workers of similar occupation, and said: ‘Men, you know that we have our prosperity by this trade. Moreover you see and hear that not only at Ephesus, but throughout almost all Asia, this Paul has persuaded and turned away many people, saying that they are not gods which are made with hands. So not only is this trade of ours in danger of falling into disrepute, but also the temple of the great goddess Diana may be despised and her magnificence destroyed, whom all Asia and the world worship.’ Now when they heard this, they were full of wrath and cried out, saying, ‘Great is Diana of the Ephesians!’ ”

The report of this speech was rapidly circulated and the uproar was terrible and the whole city seemed to be in commotion. An immense crowd gathered and a rush was made to the workshop of Aquilla to find Paul. The mob was so insanely angry that they were ready to tear him to pieces. Paul’s life would not have been spared unless the Lord had worked a direct miracle to deliver him from their hands. By the time the mob arrived, some of the Christians had already hurried Paul out of that place. The Bible says that, “The angel of the Lord encamps all around those who fear Him” (Psalm 34:7), and angels guarded the faithful apostle away from the trouble. It was not yet his time to die a martyr’s death, as the Lord had more work for Paul.

When they failed to find Paul, the angry crowd seized two of his acquaintances. “The whole city was filled with confusion, and rushed into the theater with one accord, having seized Gaius and Aristarchus, Macedonians, Paul’s travel companions” (Acts 19:29). Paul’s place of concealment was not a long way away. He soon learned of his brothers’ peril and forgetful of his own safety, he wanted to go at once to the theater and give an answer. However, the other Christians realized that Paul was the focal point of their rage and if he should appear, it would arouse the worst passions of the mob. Then there would not be the least human possibility of saving his life. Verse 30 says, “When Paul wanted to go in to the people, the disciples would not allow him.”

Paul’s desire was to defend the truth, but several of the most honorable and influential among the magistrates of the city sent him an earnest warning not to come into a situation that was so dangerous. This was proof of the regard in which Paul was held by the leading men of Asia, and it was no small tribute to his sterling integrity. Notice verse 31: “Then some of the officials of Asia, who were his friends, sent to him pleading that he would not venture into the theater.” The tumult in this theater was continually increasing. It says, “Some therefore cried one thing and some another, for the assembly was confused, and most of them did not know why they had come together” (verse 32).

Because Paul and his companions were of Hebrew extraction, the Jews did not want the situation blamed on them; so they tried to make it known that they didn’t have any part of the Christians. The Bible says, “They drew Alexander out of the multitude, the Jews putting him forward. And Alexander motioned with his hand, and wanted to make his defense to the people. But when they found out that he was a Jew, all with one voice cried out for about two hours, ‘Great is Diana of the Ephesians’ ” (verses 33, 34)! There wasn’t anything that could be done; they weren’t in any mood to make nice distinctions. They saw that he was a Jew, they thrust him aside, and they yelled for two hours.

At last, as a result of sheer exhaustion, there came a momentary silence and the recorder of the city, by virtue of his office, used this opportunity to arrest their attention and to obtain a hearing. This man, by his prudence and good judgment, soon succeeded in quieting the excitement. It says, “And when the city clerk had quieted the crowd, he said: ‘Men of Ephesus, what man is there that does not know that the city of the Ephesians is temple guardian of the great goddess Diana, and of the image which fell down from Zeus? Therefore, since these things cannot be denied, you ought to be quiet and do nothing rashly. For you have brought these men here who are neither robbers of temples nor blasphemers of your goddess. Therefore, if Demetrius and his fellow craftsmen have a case against anyone, the courts are open and there are proconsuls. Let them bring charges against one another. But if you have any other inquiry to make, it shall be determined in the lawful assembly. For we are in danger of being called in question for today’s uproar, there being no reason which we may give to account for this disorderly gathering.’ And when he had said these things, he dismissed the assembly” (verses 35–41).

The clerk showed that there was no cause for what the mob was doing and appealed to their reason to decide whether the strangers who had come among them could change the opinions of the world regarding their ruling goddess. He skillfully turned the subject from blasphemy against their goddess to suggesting that the courts were the place for any other differences to be settled. He closed with a warning that such an uproar without an apparent cause might subject the city of Ephesians to the censure of the Romans, thus causing a restriction of the liberty which they then enjoyed. He intimated that there must not be a repetition of a scene like this. So, having by this speech tranquilized the disturbed elements, he dismissed the assembly.

Now when we read the story, the words of Demetrius reveal the real cause of the tumult at Ephesus and the cause of much of the persecution that existed in the apostle’s day, and which still exists today.

The reason had to do with the fact that the apostles were telling the truth. Demetrius said, “Not only is this trade of ours in danger of falling into disrepute, but also the temple of the great goddess Diana may be despised and her magnificence destroyed, whom all Asia and the world worship” (verse 27). So, what was the problem? The problem was they were in a very profitable business of image making, and this business was endangered by the large number of people who were accepting the gospel. The income, not only of the artisans, but of pagan priests, was at stake. For this reason they instituted the most bitter opposition to the apostle and refused to receive or investigate the new religion which would have made them wise unto salvation.

Because of this uproar, Paul decided to leave (Acts 20:1). In the apostle’s day there were many people who had heard about the gospel but refused to receive it because it would have caused a decrease in their income. They would not have been able to have the large income from the practice of sin that they presently enjoyed; it would decrease. Income was more important to these people than following the truth so, they rejected the truth. That has continually happened right down through the ages.

In 2 Peter, the 2nd chapter, the apostle talks about this problem occurring not just in the past, but how it would occur in the future. He says, “These, like natural brute beasts made to be caught and destroyed, speak evil of the things they do not understand, and will utterly perish in their own corruption, and will receive the wages of unrighteousness, as those who count it pleasure to carouse in the daytime. They are spots and blemishes, carousing in their own deceptions while they feast with you, having eyes full of adultery and that cannot cease from sin, enticing [beguiling] unstable souls. They have a heart trained in covetous practices, and are accursed children. They have forsaken the right way and gone astray, following the way of Balaam the son of Beor, who loved the wages of unrighteousness; but he was rebuked for his iniquity: a dumb donkey speaking with a man’s voice restrained the madness of the prophet” (verses 12–16).

“These are wells without water, clouds carried by a tempest, for whom is reserved the blackness of darkness forever” (verse 17). Whom is he talking about? O, he’s talking about people who love the wages of unrighteousness. They believe that the devil pays very well. They are living in sin and participating with others in sin and getting paid very well for it. There are still practices of sin today by which people earn high pay; they love the wages of unrighteousness. O, friend, how much money does it take to dissuade you from following the truth? For some people it’s not very much. They love and receive the wages of unrighteousness, but they will also receive the end result of unrighteousness. Jesus said, “What shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? Or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul” (Mark 8:36, 37 KJV)? O, friend, do you love the truth? You cannot be saved if you do not love the truth.

The antichrist will deceive the world. The Bible says, “The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan, with all power, signs, and lying wonders, and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this reason God will send them strong delusion, that they should believe the lie, that they all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness” (2 Thessalonians 2:9–12).

How is it with you, today, friend? Do you love the truth enough to stick to it, obey it, and follow its principles, even if it results in a decrease in your income? There are people today whose incomes will be severely cut if they choose to follow the truth, because they are obtaining their income from the pleasures and ways of sin. Balaam sought riches from a dishonorable source as did Judas. Their love of worldly riches cost them their souls.

Choose the course of righteousness regardless of the cost. Waste no more time in worldly pursuits, but say to the Lord, “Lord, I’m willing to forsake everything and follow You and obey the truth.”

Jesus said that the truth, obeyed, would sanctify His followers (see John 17); the apostle Peter (1 Peter 1:22). What is your experience today, friend? Do you love the truth? Are you willing to follow the truth even if it results in financial cost?


(Unless appearing in quoted references or otherwise identified, Bible texts are from the New King James Version.)

Pastor John J. Grosboll is Director of Steps to Life and pastors the Prairie Meadows Church in Wichita, Kansas. He may be contacted by email at:, or by telephone at: 316-788-5559.

Health – Man Assists Nature

There are many times God calls upon us to assist His creatures in healing. Different people from a variety of different backgrounds have learned how to use many simple healing methods in times of emergency.

The following are excerpts from a mercy story that caught my eye:

Bear Cub Severely Burned in Fire

“A black bear cub that was severely burned when a wildfire roared through her habitat is receiving a fishy treatment that officials and veterinarians hope will heal her quickly so she can be released back into the wild.

“The yearling female cub was found alone, lying in ash and unable to walk on her burned paws. … Wildlife officials who were notified of the injured animal tranquilized the cub and transported her three-and-a-half hours to the California Department of Fish and Wildlife’s investigations lab.

“Generally, an animal that has survived a fire and is walking around on its own should be left alone, but that wasn’t the case here. … In addition to her inability to stand or walk, there were active fires burning nearby. Her injuries were severe, so she potentially can’t run as fast [from fire].

“Dr. Jamie Peyton of the University of California, Davis Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital, arrived at the lab to assess the bear’s burns before deciding on a treatment plan in collaboration with wildlife officials. The young cub has third-degree burns on her paws and feet. …

“Earlier this year, Peyton used an experimental treatment involving sterilized tilapia skins to heal two adult black bears and a mountain lion cub that were injured in the Thomas Fire in Southern California. The fish skins were treated with sterilizing agents and used as bandages, stitched onto the healthy tissue surrounding the burns after the area was cleaned. The process removes any fish smell.

“Tilapia skin has two types of collagen that promote faster healing. It also provides direct, steady pressure to wounds, keeps bacteria out and stays on much better and longer than any type of synthetic bandage. The treatment, which is popular in Brazil, was a success. The bears became well enough to survive on their own and were returned to their natural habitat. The mountain lion cub made a similar recovery but was too young to release back into the wild, so he is now living at a wildlife rescue and care center in Sonoma County, according to the California Department of Fish and Wildlife.

“Peyton is now treating the bear cub with the same method—the third bear to ever receive the experimental treatment. … these wild animals wouldn’t survive without our help … The experimental treatment also includes the application of antibiotics and pain salve, laser treatments, etc.

“Before applying the fish skins, Peyton said she noticed how much the little bear was licking her wounded paws and she was worried the cub would try to remove the biological bandages. But once the tilapia skins were sutured on, the bear left her wounds alone, which Peyton said is evident of pain relief.

“ ‘Animals lick and bother things that hurt them,’ she told ABC News. ‘That’s what’s really profound, that you can put this biological bandage and they leave it alone.’

“Dr. Deana Clifford of the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, who is the lead veterinarian in charge of the cub’s care, said they are optimistic that the treatment will be successful. ‘She’s very healthy other than her burned paws, but she’s also very active,’ Clifford said. ‘We’ll need to monitor her closely and adjust treatment as necessary, but we’re optimistic that she’ll make a full recovery in due time.’ ”–abc-news-topstories.html

We can be just as prepared for little emergencies around us by using charcoal poultices and other ways as the need requires. I hope that you will be prepared when the Lord calls upon you for help. I praise God for organizations like the above that reach out to preserve the lives of animals.

We have been told that, “As religious aggression subverts the liberties of our nation, those who would stand for freedom of conscience will be placed in unfavorable positions. For their own sake, they should, while they have opportunity, become intelligent in regard to disease, its causes, prevention, and cure. All those who do this will find a field of labor anywhere. There will be suffering ones, plenty of them, who will need help, not only among those of our own faith, but largely among those who know not the truth.” Counsels on Health, 506.

It would be wise if we became aware of simple methods in our own sphere so that we may reach out and help others in times of need.

God works in such amazing ways.

Question & Answer – Why did God put enmity between the serpent and humanity?

The true deceptive character of Satan had to be fully revealed before evil could be eradicated. The first example of his enmity was between Cain and Abel recorded in Genesis 3:15.

“The murder of Abel was the first example of the enmity that God had declared would exist between the serpent and the seed of the woman—between Satan and his subjects and Christ and His followers. Through man’s sin, Satan had gained control of the human race, but Christ would enable them to cast off his yoke. Whenever, through faith in the Lamb of God, a soul renounces the service of sin, Satan’s wrath is kindled. The holy life of Abel testified against Satan’s claim that it is impossible for man to keep God’s law. When Cain, moved by the spirit of the wicked one, saw that he could not control Abel, he was so enraged that he destroyed his life. And wherever there are any who will stand in vindication of the righteousness of the law of God, the same spirit will be manifested against them. It is the spirit that through all the ages has set up the stake and kindled the burning pile for the disciples of Christ. But the cruelties heaped upon the follower of Jesus are instigated by Satan and his hosts because they cannot force him to submit to their control. It is the rage of a vanquished foe. Every martyr of Jesus has died a conqueror. Says the prophet, ‘They overcame him [“that old serpent, called the devil, and Satan”] by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death’ (Revelation 12:11, 9).” Patriarchs and Prophets, 77.

“Notwithstanding that Cain had by his crimes merited the sentence of death, a merciful Creator still spared his life, and granted him opportunity for repentance. But Cain lived only to harden his heart, to encourage rebellion against the divine authority, and to become the head of a line of bold, abandoned sinners. This one apostate, led on by Satan, became a tempter to others; and his example and influence exerted their demoralizing power, until the earth became so corrupt and filled with violence as to call for its destruction.” Ibid., 78.

“In sparing the life of the first murderer, God presented before the whole universe a lesson bearing upon the great controversy. … Fifteen centuries after the sentence pronounced upon Cain, the universe witnessed the fruition of his influence and example, in the crime and pollution that flooded the earth. It was made manifest that the sentence of death pronounced upon the fallen race for the transgression of God’s law was both just and merciful. The longer men lived in sin, the more abandoned they became. The divine sentence cutting short a career of unbridled iniquity, and freeing the world from the influence of those who had become hardened in rebellion, was a blessing rather than a curse.” Ibid., 78.

Keys to the Storehouse – Know Him and Shine

Have you noticed how dark it is getting on this little world of ours? The darker the night, the brighter your little light will shine, telling the world that you know the Saviour, and lighting up the pathway for another to follow.

Consider these elements that we are told knew Jesus.

  • “At His birth the star had known Christ, and had guided the wise men to the manger where He lay.
  • The heavenly hosts had known Him, and had sung His praise over the plains of Bethlehem.
  • The sea had known His voice, and had obeyed His command.
  • Disease and death had recognized His authority, and had yielded to Him their prey.
  • The sun had known Him, and at the sight of His dying anguish, had hidden its face of light.
  • The rocks had known Him, and had shivered into fragments at His cry.
  • Inanimate nature had known Christ, and had borne witness to His divinity.
  • But the priests and rulers of Israel knew not the Son of God.” The Desire of Ages, 770, 771.

Everything created knows Jesus except, tragically, His professed followers.

It is our privilege to know Him who died for us and to be a light in this world that is shining brightly and not being hid under a bushel. Give yourself to God right now and stand strong upon His Word and become channels of light.

Join the list above. Let not your mind and heart be enveloped in the darkness of this world, crucifying the Saviour afresh. Let your light so shine that all around the light will be a reflection of the love of Jesus.

“And while Christ opens heaven to man, the life which He imparts opens the heart of man to heaven. Sin not only shuts us away from God, but destroys in the human soul both the desire and the capacity for knowing Him.” Reflecting Christ, 106.

Know Him and live in the light of God’s word that all may receive those heavenly rays and shine those rays onto another.

Heavenly Father: We need Your light to shine into our hearts right at this moment that we may reflect it to all around that all may know that we stand in heavenly places with You, abiding in Your word. Amen.