Bible Study Guides – “Our God Whom We Serve Is Able To Deliver”

July 21, 2001 – July 27, 2001

MEMORY VERSE “When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee: when thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned; neither shall the flame kindle upon thee.” Isaiah 43:2.

STUDY HELP: Prophets and Kings, 503–513.


“Important are the lessons to be learned from the experience of the Hebrew youth on the plain of Dura. In this our day, many of God’s servants, though innocent of wrongdoing, will be given over to suffer humiliation and abuse at the hands of those who, inspired by Satan, are filled with envy and religious bigotry. Especially will the wrath of man be aroused against those who hallow the Sabbath of the fourth commandment; and at last a universal decree will denounce these as deserving of death. The season of distress before God’s people will call for a faith that will not falter. His children must make it manifest that He is the only object of their worship, and that no consideration, not even that of life itself, can induce them to make the least concession to false worship.” Prophets and Kings, 512.

“In the Plain of Dura”

1 What gesture of pride did Nebuchadnezzar make? Daniel 3:1.

NOTE: “Light direct from Heaven had been permitted to shine upon King Nebuchadnezzar, and for a little time he was influenced by the fear of God. But a few years of prosperity filled his heart with pride, and he forgot his acknowledgment of the living God. He resumed his idol worship with increased zeal and bigotry. From the treasures obtained in war he made a golden image to represent the one that he had seen in his dream, setting it up in the plain of Dura, and commanding all the rulers and the people to worship it, on pain of death. This statue was about ninety feet in height and nine in breadth, and in the eyes of that idolatrous people it presented a most imposing and majestic appearance.” The Sanctified Life, 36, 37.

“Thus the grand lesson given by God to the heathen, and to all people, was misconstrued and misplaced. That which was designed by God to teach lessons of truth, and to give the world clear, distinct rays of light, Nebuchadnezzar turned from its purpose, making it minister to his pride and vanity. The prophetic illustration was made to serve for the glorification of humanity. The symbol designed to unfold important events was turned into a symbol which would hinder the spread of that knowledge which God designed the kingdoms of the earth should receive. By the height and beauty of his image, by the material of which it was formed, the king sought to make error and false doctrine magnificent and attractive, more powerful, seemingly, than anything God had given.” Signs of the Times, April 29, 1897.

2 What command did Nebuchadnezzar make regarding the image? Daniel 3:2–7.

NOTE: “This scheme, devised in the counsel of Satan, was made in order to compel the three Hebrew children to obey human laws in direct opposition to the laws of Jehovah. The most learned of the nation, men who were noted for their aptness and educational advantages, thus worked to form a confederacy that would exalt the king of Babylon and excite enmity against the Hebrew captives. They prevailed upon the king to enact certain laws which these youth could not consent to respect. The worship of the image which the king had set up, was made the established religion of the country.” Signs of the Times, September 2, 1897.

“There are Certain Jews”

3 What accusation was made by certain Chaldeans? Daniel 3:8–12.

NOTE: “These men who thus accused the Hebrews had been saved from death by Daniel’s appeal to the king in their behalf, but they were envious of the three Hebrews, and were desirous of hurting their influence; they therefore carried the complaint to the king that these men had dared to disobey his commands.” Signs of the Times, May 6, 1897.

4 What was the king’s immediate reaction to the news of the three young men’s disobedience? Daniel 3:13.

NOTE: “The thought that his slightest wish should not be respected at the dedication of the image, filled the king with rage, and he commanded that the men be brought before him. ‘Is it true, O Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, do not ye serve my gods, nor worship the golden image which I have set up? ’ How short-lived is the exaltation bestowed by men! How little dependence can be placed in them! These three men, once honored, and entrusted with great responsibilities, are now the objects of the wrath of a king whose will is law. Truly we can not trust in princes.” Signs of the Times, May 6, 1897.

5 What was the king’s considered response? Daniel 3:14, 15.

NOTE: “As the three Hebrews stood before the king, he was convinced that they possessed something the other wise men of his kingdom did not have. They had been faithful in the performance of every duty. He would give them another trial. If only they would signify their willingness to unite with the multitude in worshiping the image, all would be well with them; ‘but if ye worship not,’ he added, ‘ye shall be cast the same hour into the midst of a burning fiery furnace.’ Then with his hand stretched upward in defiance, he demanded, ‘Who is that God that shall deliver you out of my hands? ’” Prophets and Kings, 507.

“Our God is Able to Deliver”

6 What response did the three give the king? Daniel 3:16–18.

NOTE: “They had learned from the history of their fathers that disobedience to God is dishonor, disaster, and ruin; that the fear of the Lord is not only the beginning of wisdom but the foundation of all true prosperity. They look with calmness upon the fiery furnace and the idolatrous throng. They have trusted in God, and He will not fail them now. Their answer is respectful, but decided: ‘Be it known unto thee, O king, that we will not serve thy gods, nor worship the golden image which thou hast set up’ (Daniel 3:18).” The Sanctified Life, 37.

“Thus these youth, imbued with the Holy Spirit, declared to the whole nation their faith, that He whom they worshiped was the only true and living God. This demonstration of their own faith was the most eloquent presentation of their principles. In order to impress idolaters with the power and greatness of the living God, His servants must reveal their own reverence for God. They must make it manifest that He is the only object of their honor and worship, and that no consideration, not even the preservation of life itself, can induce them to make the least concession to idolatry. These lessons have a direct and vital bearing upon our experience in these last days.” In Heavenly Places, 149.

7 What punishment immediately followed the young men’s reply? Daniel 3:19–21.

NOTE: “When the king saw that his will was not received as the will of God, he was ‘full of fury,’ and the form of his visage was changed against these men. Satanic attributes made his countenance appear as the countenance of a demon; and with all the force he could command, he ordered that the furnace be heated seven times hotter than its wont, and commanded the most mighty men to bind the youth, and cast them into the furnace. He felt that it required more than ordinary power to deal with these noble men. His mind was strongly impressed that something unusual would interpose in their behalf, and his strongest men were ordered to deal with them. The king’s command was urgent. He was anxious to punish the men who had dared to exercise their will in opposition to his will; and without delay, with all their clothing upon them, they were cast into the fire.” Signs of the Times, May 6, 1897.

“Four Men Loose Walking In the Midst of the Fire”

8 What was the effect of the furnace on the executioners of the three young men? Daniel 3:22.

NOTE: “The king’s wrath knew no limits. In the very height of his power and glory, to be thus defied by the representatives of a despised and captive race was an insult which his proud spirit could not endure. The fiery furnace had been heated seven times more than it was wont, and into it were cast the Hebrew exiles. So furious were the flames, that the men who cast them in were burned to death.” The Sanctified Life, 38.

9 What astonishing sight met Nebuchadnezzar’s eyes? Daniel 3:24, 25.

NOTE: “How did that heathen king know what the Son of God was like? The Hebrew captives filling positions of trust in Babylon had in life and character represented before him the truth. When asked for a reason of their faith, they had given it without hesitation. Plainly and simply they had presented the principles of righteousness, thus teaching those around them of the God whom they worshiped. They had told of Christ, the Redeemer to come; and in the form of the fourth in the midst of the fire the king recognized the Son of God. . . .” Conflict and Courage, 252.

10 What wonderful Bible promise was thus fulfilled? Isaiah 43:2.

NOTE: “He who walked with the Hebrew worthies in the fiery furnace will be with His followers wherever they are. His abiding presence will comfort and sustain. In the midst of the time of trouble—trouble such as has not been since there was a nation—His chosen ones will stand unmoved. Satan with all the hosts of evil cannot destroy the weakest of God’s saints. Angels that excel in strength will protect them, and in their behalf Jehovah will reveal Himself as a ‘God of gods,’ able to save to the uttermost those who have put their trust in Him.” Conflict and Courage, 252.

“Nor Was an Hair of Their Head Singed”

11 What words did the king address to the three young men? Daniel 3:26.

NOTE: “And now, his own greatness and dignity forgotten, Nebuchadnezzar descended from his throne and, going to the mouth of the furnace, cried out, ‘Ye servants of the most high God, come forth, and come hither.’ Then Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego came forth before the vast multitude, showing themselves unhurt. The presence of their Saviour had guarded them from harm, and only their fetters had been burned. ‘And the princes, governors, and captains, and the king’s counselors, being gathered together, saw these men, upon whose bodies the fire had no power, nor was an hair of their head singed, neither were their coats changed, nor the smell of fire had passed on them.’” Prophets and Kings, 509.

12 What effect had the fire had upon them? Daniel 3:27.

NOTE: “And they obeyed, showing themselves unhurt before that vast multitude, not even the smell of fire being upon their garments. This miracle produced a striking change in the minds of the people. The great golden image, set up with such display, was forgotten. The king published a decree that any one speaking against the God of these men should be put to death; ‘because there is no other god that can deliver after this sort.’” Review and Herald, February 1, 1881.

13 What was the king’s reaction to the courage and faith of the three young men? Daniel 3:28–30.

NOTE: “These three Hebrews possessed genuine sanctification. True Christian principle will not stop to weigh consequences. It does not ask, What will people think of me if I do this? or, How will it affect my worldly prospects if I do that? With the most intense longing the children of God desire to know what He would have them do, that their works may glorify Him. The Lord has made ample provision that the hearts and lives of all His followers may be controlled by divine grace, that they may be as burning and shining lights in the world. These faithful Hebrews possessed great natural ability, they had enjoyed the highest intellectual culture, and now occupied a position of honor; but all this did not lead them to forget God. Their powers were yielded to the sanctifying influence of divine grace. By their steadfast integrity they showed forth the praises of Him who had called them out of darkness into His marvelous light. In their wonderful deliverance were displayed, before that vast assembly, the power and majesty of God. Jesus placed Himself by their side in the fiery furnace, and by the glory of His presence convinced the proud king of Babylon that it could be no other than the Son of God. The light of Heaven had been shining forth from Daniel and his companions, until all their associates understood the faith which ennobled their lives and beautified their characters. By the deliverance of His faithful servants, the Lord declares that He will take His stand with the oppressed and overthrow all earthly powers that would trample upon the authority of the God of heaven.” The Sanctified Life, 39, 40.

Bible Study Guides – “What Shall Be In the Latter Days”

July 14, 2001 – July 20, 2001

MEMORY VERSE “And in the days of these kings shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed: and the kingdom shall not be left to other people, but it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand for ever.” Daniel 2:44.

STUDY HELP: Prophets and Kings, 491–502.


“The Lord was working in the Babylonian kingdom, communicating light to the four Hebrew captives, that He might represent His work before the people. He would reveal that He had power over the kingdoms of the world, to set up kings and to throw down kings. The King over all kings was communicating great truth to the king of Babylon, awakening in his mind a sense of his responsibility to God. He saw the contrast between the wisdom of God and the wisdom of the most learned men in his kingdom.” Special Testimonies on Education, 10.

“Nebuchadnezzar Dreamed Dreams”

1 What was the effect of his dreams on the king’s state of mind? Daniel 2:1.

NOTE: “Soon after Daniel and his companions entered the service of the king of Babylon, events occurred that revealed to an idolatrous nation the power and faithfulness of the God of Israel. Nebuchadnezzar had a remarkable dream, by which ‘his spirit was troubled, and his sleep brake from him.’ But although the king’s mind was deeply impressed, he found it impossible, when he awoke, to recall the particulars.” Prophets and Kings, 491.

2 What command did the king make of his astrologers and wise men and how did they respond? Daniel 2:2–9.

NOTE: “Dissatisfied with their evasive answer, and suspicious because, despite their pretentious claims to reveal the secrets of men, they nevertheless seemed unwilling to grant him help, the king commanded his wise men, with promises of wealth and honor on the one hand, and threats of death on the other, to tell him not only the interpretation of the dream, but the dream itself. . . . Still the wise men returned the answer, ‘Let the king tell his servants the dream, and we will show the interpretation of it.’” Prophets and Kings, 492.

“There is Not a Man That Can Show the King’s Matter”

3 When the wise men failed to satisfy the king, what was his reaction? Daniel 2:10–13.

NOTE: “The inability of the wise men to tell the dream, is a representation of the wise men of the present day, who have not discernment and learning and knowledge from the Most High, and therefore are unable to understand the prophecies. The most learned in the world’s lore, who are not watching to hear what God says in His word, and opening their hearts to receive that word and give it to others, are not representatives of His. It is not the great and learned men of the earth, kings and nobles, who will receive the truth unto eternal life, though it will be brought to them.” Fundamentals of Christian Education, 412.

4 What was Daniel’s suggestion when he heard of this matter? Daniel 2:14–18.

NOTE: “Upon hearing this, Daniel, taking his life in his hands, ventured into the king’s presence and begged that time be granted, that he might petition his God to reveal to him the dream and its interpretation. To this request the monarch acceded. ‘Then Daniel went to his house, and made the thing known to Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah, his companions.’ Together they sought for wisdom from the Source of light and knowledge. Their faith was strong in the consciousness that God had placed them where they were, that they were doing His work and meeting the demands of duty. In times of perplexity and danger they had always turned to Him for guidance and protection, and He had proved an ever-present help. Now with contrition of heart they submitted themselves anew to the Judge of the earth, pleading that He would grant them deliverance in this their time of special need.” Prophets and Kings, 493, 494.

“He Revealeth the Deep and Secret Things”

5 How did Daniel learn the king’s dream and its interpretation and what was his response? Daniel 2:19–23.

NOTE: “And they did not plead in vain. The God whom they had honored, now honored them. The Spirit of the Lord rested upon them, and to Daniel, ‘in a night vision,’ was revealed the king’s dream and its meaning. Daniel’s first act was to thank God for the revelation given him.” Prophets and Kings, 494.

6 How did Daniel reply to the king’s question? Daniel 2:26–28.

NOTE: “Behold the Jewish captive, calm and self-possessed, in the presence of the monarch of the world’s most powerful empire. In his first words he disclaimed honor for himself and exalted God as the source of all wisdom. To the anxious inquiry of the king, ‘Art thou able to make known unto me the dream which I have seen, and the interpretation thereof? ’ he replied: ‘The secret which the king hath demanded cannot the wise men, the astrologers, the magicians, the soothsayers, show unto the king; but there is a God in heaven that revealeth secrets, and maketh known to the king Nebuchadnezzar what shall be in the latter days.’” Prophets and Kings, 494, 497.

“The Form Thereof Was Terrible”

7 How did Daniel describe the details of the king’s dream? Daniel 2:31–35.

NOTE: “The image shown to Nebuchadnezzar in the visions of the night represents the kingdoms of the world. The metals in the image, symbolizing the different kingdoms, became less and less pure and valuable, from the head down. The head of the image was of gold, the breast and arms of silver, the sides of brass, and the feet and toes iron mingled with clay. So the kingdoms represented by them deteriorated in value.” Review and Herald, February 6, 1900.

8 What did the golden head of the image represent? Daniel 2:36–38.

NOTE: “The vision of the great image, in which Babylon was represented as the head of gold, was given Nebuchadnezzar in order that he might have a clear understanding in regard to the end of all things earthly, and also in regard to the setting up of God’s everlasting kingdom. Although in the interpretation he was declared to be ‘a king of kings,’ this was because ‘the God of heaven’ had given him ‘a kingdom, power, and strength, and glory.’ His kingdom was universal, extending ‘wheresoever the children of men dwell,’ yet it was to be followed by three other universal kingdoms, after which ‘the God of heaven’ would ‘set up a kingdom,’ which should ‘never be destroyed.’” Youth’s Instructor, October 11, 1904.

“After Thee . . .”

9 What did the silver breast and arms symbolize? What was the kingdom that superseded Babylon? Daniel 2:39, first part. Compare Daniel 5:28, 30, 31.

NOTE: “The image revealed to Nebuchadnezzar, while representing the deterioration of the kingdoms of the earth in power and glory, also fitly represents the deterioration of religion and morality among the people of these kingdoms. As nations forget God, in like proportion they become weak morally. Babylon passed away because in her prosperity she forgot God, and ascribed the glory of her prosperity to human achievement. The Medo-Persian kingdom was visited by the wrath of heaven because in this kingdom God’s law was trampled under foot. The fear of the Lord found no place in the hearts of the people. The prevailing influences in Medo-Persia were wickedness, blasphemy, and corruption.” Youth’s Instructor, September 22, 1903.

10 How was the third kingdom symbolized? What was the name of this kingdom? Daniel 2:39, last part. Compare Daniel 7:3–7, 20, 21.

NOTE: “Every nation that has come upon the stage of action has been permitted to occupy its place on the earth, that the fact might be determined whether it would fulfill the purposes of the Watcher and the Holy One. Prophecy has traced the rise and progress of the world’s great empires—Babylon, Medo-Persia, Greece, and Rome. With each of these, as with the nations of less power, history has repeated itself. Each has had its period of test; each has failed, its glory faded, its power departed.” Prophets and Kings, 535.

“The Fourth Kingdom”

11 How is the fourth kingdom described? Daniel 2:40.

NOTE: “What kingdom succeeded Greece in the empire of the world, for the legs of iron denote the fourth kingdom in the series? The testimony of history is full and explicit on this point. One kingdom did this, and one only, and that was Rome.” Uriah Smith, Daniel and the Revelation, 54.

“When the empire of Babylon was so strong and its influence so far-reaching that seemingly the most powerful foe could not take its sceptre, Daniel, a man inspired by God, prophesied that it would pass away, notwithstanding its apparent magnificence, and that a second would succeed it. He prophesied also that the second empire would be succeeded by the third, and that a fourth empire should arise, more fierce, more determined, and more powerful than any kingdom that had preceded it. As strong as iron, this kingdom would subdue and break in pieces all the nations of the world.” Review and Herald, February 6, 1900.

12 How is the later stage of Rome described? Daniel 2:41–43.

NOTE: “We have come to a time when God’s sacred work is represented by the feet of the image in which the iron was mixed with the miry clay. . . . The mingling of church craft and state craft is represented by the iron and the clay. This union is weakening all the power of the churches. This investing the church with the power of the state will bring evil results. Men have almost passed the point of God’s forbearance. They have invested their strength in politics, and have united with the papacy.” Manuscript Releases, vol. 1, 51.

“The kingdoms that followed were even more base and corrupt. They deteriorated because they cast off their allegiance to God. As they forgot Him, they sank lower and still lower in the scale of moral value. The vast empire of Rome crumbled to pieces, and from its ruins rose that mighty power, the Roman Catholic Church. This church boasts of her infallibility and her hereditary religion. But this religion is a horror to all who are acquainted with the secrets of the mystery of iniquity. The priests of this church maintain their ascendancy by keeping the people in ignorance of God’s will, as revealed in the Scriptures.” Youth’s Instructor, September 22, 1903.

“A Kingdom Which Shall Never Be Destroyed”

13 What was the outcome of the history revealed in the king’s dream? Daniel 2:44, 45. Compare Luke 20:17, 18.

NOTE: “Read the book of Daniel. Call up, point by point, the history of the kingdoms there represented. Behold statesmen, councils, powerful armies, and see how God wrought to abase the pride of men, and lay human glory in the dust. God alone is represented as great. In the vision of the prophet He is seen casting down one mighty ruler, and setting up another. He is revealed as the monarch of the universe, about to set up His everlasting kingdom—the Ancient of days, the living God, the Source of all wisdom, the Ruler of the present, the Revealer of the future. Read, and understand how poor, how frail, how short-lived, how erring, how guilty is man in lifting up his soul unto vanity. . . .” Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary, vol. 4, 1166.

14 What was Nebuchadnezzar’s immediate reaction to the revelation made by Daniel and what request did Daniel make? Daniel 2:46–49.

NOTE: “The Lord was working in the Babylonian kingdom, and communicating light to the four Hebrew youth, in order that He might represent His work before the idolatrous nation. He would reveal that He had power over the kingdoms of the world,—power to enthrone and to dethrone kings. The King over all kings was communicating great truths to the Babylonian monarch, and awakening in his mind a realization of his responsibility to God. Nebuchadnezzar saw clearly the difference between the wisdom of God and the wisdom of the most learned men of his kingdom.” Youth’s Instructor, September 8, 1903.

Bible Study Guides – “Daniel Purposed In His Heart”

July 7, 2001 – July 13, 2001

MEMORY VERSE “Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against Thee.” Psalm 119:11.

STUDY HELP: Last Day Events, 15–17.


“Since the death of good King Josiah, those who ruled the nation had been proving untrue to their trust and had been leading many astray. Jehoahaz, deposed by the interference of the king of Egypt, had been followed by Jehoiakim, an older son of Josiah. From the beginning of Jehoiakim’s reign, Jeremiah had little hope of saving his beloved land from destruction and the people from captivity. Yet he was not permitted to remain silent while utter ruin threatened the kingdom. Those who had remained loyal to God must be encouraged to persevere in rightdoing, and sinners must, if possible, be induced to turn from iniquity.” Prophets and Kings, 412.

“The Lord Gave Jehoiakim into His Hand”

1 What calamity befell Jerusalem in the reign of Jehoiakim? Daniel 1:1; II Chronicles 36:5–7.

NOTE: “‘In the fourth year of Jehoiakim,’ very soon after Daniel was taken to Babylon, Jeremiah predicted the captivity of many of the Jews, as their punishment for not heeding the word of the Lord. The Chaldeans were to be used as the instrument by which God would chastise His disobedient people. Their punishment was to be in proportion to their intelligence and to the warnings they had despised. ‘This whole land shall be a desolation, and an astonishment,’ the prophet declared; ‘and these nations shall serve the king of Babylon seventy years. And it shall come to pass, when seventy years are accomplished, that I will punish the king of Babylon, and that nation, saith the Lord, for their iniquity, and the land of the Chaldeans, and will make it perpetual desolations.’” Review and Herald, March 14, 1907.

2 What sort of person was Jehoiakim? Jeremiah 36:1–3, 21–25.

NOTE: “Some in the experience of the past few years have virtually repeated the act of King Jehoiakim in burning the messages of the Spirit of God. But today as of old these messages of warning have been repeated. . . . The Lord has been trifled with by His people. The time that should have been devoted to repentance and reform has been spent in criticism and in following man-formed opinions and ideas. A terrible influence for evil is exerted when men turn from the right way to follow selfish devisings. Satan is playing the game of life for the souls of men, and he is gaining victory. We can learn from a study of King Jehoiakim’s example what men will do when they pass the boundary line.” The Paulson Collection of Ellen G. White Letters, 80.

3 Why was Nebuchadnezzar victorious? Daniel 1:2.

NOTE: “The prophet Nehemiah presents the evil-doings of the Jewish nation as the cause of their calamities. After recounting the Lord’s dealings with them, and their oft-repeated rebellion, he declares: ‘They were disobedient, and rebelled against Thee, and cast Thy law behind their backs, and slew Thy prophets which testified against them to turn them to Thee, and they wrought great provocations. Therefore Thou deliveredst them into the hand of their enemies.’” Youth’s Instructor, May 14, 1903.

“Children in Whom Was No Blemish”

4 What plan did Nebuchadnezzar devise for some of his captives? Daniel 1:3, 4. Compare II Kings 20:16–18.

NOTE: “Daniel early gave promise of the remarkable ability developed in later years. He and his three companions who were selected to serve in the court of the king, were of princely birth, and are described as ‘children in whom was no blemish, but well favored, and skilful in all wisdom, and cunning in knowledge, and understanding science, and such as had ability in them.’ Perceiving the superior talents of these youthful captives, King Nebuchadnezzar determined to prepare them to fill important positions in his kingdom. That they might be fully qualified for their life at court, according to Oriental custom, they were to be taught the language of the Chaldeans, and to be subjected for three years to a thorough course of both physical and intellectual discipline.” Youth’s Instructor, June 4, 1903.

5 What change did Nebuchadnezzar make to their names? Daniel 1:6, 7.

NOTE: The name Daniel means, “God is my Judge.” His new name meant “Keeper of Bel’s treasures.” The name Hananiah means “Jehovah has been gracious,” but his new name was “Illumined by the Sun.” Mishael, which means “He who is like God,” became “One who is like Shach.” Azariah, whose name means “He whom Jehovah helps,” became “Servant of Nego.”

“The names of Daniel and his companions were changed to names representing Chaldean deities. Great significance was attached to the names given by Hebrew parents to their children. Often these stood for traits of character that the parent desired to see developed in the child. The prince in whose charge the captive youth were placed, ‘gave unto Daniel the name of Belteshazzar; and to Hananiah, of Shadrach; and to Mishael, of Meshach; and to Azariah, of Abednego.’ The king did not compel the Hebrew youth to renounce their faith in favor of idolatry, but he hoped to bring this about gradually. By giving them names significant of idolatry, by bringing them daily into close association with idolatrous customs, and under the influence of the seductive rites of heathen worship, he hoped to induce them to renounce the religion of their nation and to unite with the worship of the Babylonians.” Prophets and Kings, 480, 481.

“Daniel Purposed In His Heart”

6 What special favor did Nebuchadnezzar bestow on his captives? Daniel 1:5.

NOTE: “At the very outset of their career there came to them a decisive test of character. It was provided that they should eat of the food and drink of the wine that came from the king’s table. In this the king thought to give them an expression of his favor and of his solicitude for their welfare. But a portion having been offered to idols, the food from the king’s table was consecrated to idolatry; and one partaking of it would be regarded as offering homage to the gods of Babylon. In such homage, loyalty to Jehovah forbade Daniel and his companions to join. Even a mere pretence of eating the food or drinking the wine would be a denial of their faith. To do this would be to array themselves with heathenism and to dishonor the principles of the law of God.” Prophets and Kings, 481.

7 What resolve did Daniel make concerning this matter? Daniel 1:8.

NOTE: “Had Daniel so desired, he might have found in his surroundings a plausible excuse for departing from strictly temperate habits. He might have argued that, dependent as he was on the king’s favor and subject to his power, there was no other course for him to pursue than to eat of the king’s food and drink of his wine; for should he adhere to the divine teaching, he would offend the king and probably lose his position and his life. Should he disregard the commandment of the Lord he would retain the favor of the king and secure for himself intellectual advantages and flattering worldly prospects. But Daniel did not hesitate. The approval of God was dearer to him than the favor of the most powerful earthly potentate—dearer than life itself. He determined to stand firm in his integrity, let the result be what it might. He ‘purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the king’s meat, nor with the wine which he drank.’ And in this resolve he was supported by his three companions.” Prophets and Kings, 482, 483.

“Prove Thy Servants”

8 What was the reaction when Daniel explained his unwillingness to partake of the king’s food and wine? Daniel 1:9-10.

NOTE: “To carry out his purpose not to defile himself with the king’s food, Daniel made request of the prince of the eunuchs for a simpler diet. ‘Now God had brought Daniel into favor and tender love with the prince of the eunuchs.’ This officer saw in Daniel good traits of character. He saw that he was striving to be kind and helpful, that his words were respectful and courteous, and his manner possessed the grace of modesty and meekness. It was the good behavior of the youth that gained for him the favor and love of the prince. But the prince of the eunuchs hesitated to grant the request of Daniel, fearing that such rigid abstinence as he proposed would cause the Hebrews to become less ruddy in health than those who ate of the king’s dainties.” Youth’s Instructor, November 12, 1907.

9 What proposal did Daniel then make? Daniel 1:11–14.

NOTE: “When they preferred their request, the Hebrew youth knew the seriousness of their position, and by earnest prayer they braced themselves for duty and for trial. Severe criticism was passed upon them by their companions; they had to meet ridicule and abuse; but sneers could not weaken their piety. With watchfulness and prayer they guarded every avenue of temptation. They had learned the principles of true service. They were captives, lonely, and in peril; but they were in possession of a treasure of priceless worth,—unbending integrity. They feared to do wrong.” Youth’s Instructor, November 12, 1907.

10 What was the outcome of the ten-day test? Daniel 1:15, 16.

NOTE: “Melzar, though fearful that by complying with this request he would incur the displeasure of the king, nevertheless consented; and Daniel knew that his case was won. At the end of the ten days’ trial the result was found to be the opposite of the prince’s fears. ‘Their countenances appeared fairer and fatter in flesh than all the children which did eat the portion of the king’s meat.’ In personal appearance the Hebrew youth showed a marked superiority over their companions. As a result, Daniel and his associates were permitted to continue their simple diet during their entire course of training.” Prophets and Kings, 484.

“God Gave Them Knowledge and Skill”

11 How did God honor the faithfulness of Daniel and his three friends? Daniel 1:17.

NOTE: “The Lord regarded with approval the firmness and self-denial of the Hebrew youth, and their purity of motive; and His blessing attended them. He ‘gave them knowledge and skill in all learning and wisdom: and Daniel had understanding in all visions and dreams.’ The promise was fulfilled, ‘Them that honor Me I will honor.’ I Samuel 2:30. As Daniel clung to God with unwavering trust, the spirit of prophetic power came upon him. While receiving instruction from man in the duties of court life, he was being taught by God to read the mysteries of the future and to record for coming generations, through figures and symbols, events covering the history of this world till the close of time.” Prophets and Kings, 484, 485.

12 What was the outcome of their final examination? Daniel 1:18–20.

NOTE: “When the time came for the youth in training to be tested, the Hebrews were examined, with other candidates, for the service of the kingdom. But ‘among them all was found none like Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah.’ Their keen comprehension, their wide knowledge, their choice and exact language, testified to the unimpaired strength and vigor of their mental powers. ‘In all matters of wisdom and understanding, that the king inquired of them, he found them ten times better than all the magicians and astrologers that were in all his realm;’ ‘therefore stood they before the king.’ At the court of Babylon were gathered representatives from all lands, men of the highest talent, men the most richly endowed with natural gifts, and possessed of the broadest culture that the world could bestow; yet among them all, the Hebrew youth were without a peer. In physical strength and beauty, in mental vigor and literary attainment, they stood unrivaled. The erect form, the firm, elastic step, the fair countenance, the undimmed senses, the untainted breath—all were so many certificates of good habits, insignia of the nobility with which nature honors those who are obedient to her laws.” Prophets and Kings, 485.

Bible Study Guides – “A Man Greatly Beloved” Lessons on the Book of Daniel

June 30, 2001 – July 6, 2001

General Introduction

“Daniel, the Prime Minister of the greatest of earthly kingdoms, was at the same time a prophet of God, receiving the light of heavenly inspiration. A man of like passions as ourselves, the pen of inspiration describes him as without fault. His business transactions, when subjected to the closest scrutiny of his enemies, were found to be without one flaw. He was an example of what every businessman may become when his heart is converted and consecrated, and when his motives are right in the sight of God. . . .

“Unwavering in his allegiance to God, unyielding in his mastery of self, Daniel, by his noble dignity and unswerving integrity, while yet a young man, won the ‘favour and tender love’ of the heathen officer in whose charge he had been placed. . . . He rose speedily to the position of Prime Minister of the kingdom of Babylon. Through the reign of successive monarchs, the downfall of the nation, and the establishment of another world empire, such were his wisdom and statesmanship, so perfect his tact, his courtesy, his genuine goodness of heart, his fidelity to principle, that even his enemies were forced to the confession that ‘they could find none occasion nor fault; forasmuch as he was faithful.’

“Honored by men with the responsibilities of state and with the secrets of kingdoms bearing universal sway, Daniel was honored by God as His ambassador, and was given many revelations of the mysteries of ages to come. His wonderful prophecies, as recorded by him in chapters 7 to 12 of the book bearing his name, were not fully understood even by the prophet himself; but before his life labors closed, he was given the blessed assurance that ‘at the end of the days’—in the closing period of this world’s history—he would again be permitted to stand in his lot and place. . . .

“We may, like Daniel and his fellows, live for that which is true and noble and enduring. And learning in this life the principles of the kingdom of our Lord and Saviour, . . . we may be prepared at His coming to enter with Him into its possession.” Conflict and Courage, 254.

“The More Sure Word of Prophecy”

MEMORY VERSE “We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts.” II Peter 1:19.

STUDY HELP: Last Day Events, 15–17.

Introduction “The prophecies present a succession of events leading down to the opening of the judgment. This is especially true of the book of Daniel. But that part of his prophecy which related to the last days, Daniel was bidden to close up and seal ‘to the time of the end.’ Not till we reach this time could a message concerning the judgment be proclaimed, based on a fulfillment of these prophecies. But at the time of the end, says the prophet, ‘many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased.’ Daniel 12:4.” The Great Controversy, 356.

“A Light That Shineth In a Dark Place”

1 How does the psalmist describe the Word of God? Psalm 119:105.

NOTE: “Those who study the word of God with hearts open to the enlightenment of the Holy Spirit, will not remain in darkness as to the meaning of the word. ‘If any man willeth to do His will,’ Christ said, ‘he shall know of the teaching whether it be of God, or whether I speak from Myself.’ John 7:17, R.V. All who come to Christ for a clearer knowledge of the truth will receive it. He will unfold to them the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, and these mysteries will be understood by the heart that longs to know the truth. A heavenly light will shine into the soul temple, and will be revealed to others as the bright shining of a lamp on a dark path.” Christ’s Object Lessons, 36.

2 How does Peter describe the “more sure word of prophecy”? II Peter 1:19.

NOTE: “Every child of God should be intelligent in the Scriptures, and able, by tracing the fulfillment of prophecy, to show our position in this world’s history. The Bible was written for the common people as well as for scholars, and is within the comprehension of all. The great truths which underlie man’s duty to his fellow men and to his Maker are clearly revealed; and those who really want the truth need make no mistake. The way is not left in uncertainty, as though we were standing where four roads met, not knowing which one to take. The truth is our guide; it is to us like a pillar of cloud by day and a pillar of fire by night.” Counsels on Sabbath School Work, 23.

“He Revealeth His Secret”

3 What precious promise has the Lord made? Amos 3:7.

NOTE: “In the annals of human history, the growth of nations, the rise and fall of empires, appear as if dependent on the will and prowess of man; the shaping of events seems, to a great degree, to be determined by his power, ambition, or caprice. But in the word of God the curtain is drawn aside, and we behold, above, behind, and through all the play and counterplay of human interest and power and passions, the agencies of the All-merciful One, silently, patiently working out the counsels of His own will. . . . In the history of nations the student of God’s word may behold the literal fulfillment of divine prophecy.” Conflict and Courage, 250.

4 How did Daniel show his awareness of this truth? Daniel 2:20–22, 27–28.

NOTE: “In past ages the Lord God of heaven revealed His secrets to His prophets. The present and the future are equally clear to Him. The voice of God echoes down the ages, telling man what is to take place. Kings and princes take their places at their appointed time. They think they are carrying out their own purposes, but in reality they are fulfilling the word that God has spoken.” Youth’s Instructor, December 1, 1903.

“Those Things Which Are Revealed Belong unto Us”

5 While the secret things belong to God, to whom do those things belong which He reveals to His servants the prophets? Deuteronomy 29:29.

NOTE: “The idea that certain portions of the Bible cannot be understood has led to neglect of some of its most important truths. The fact needs to be emphasized, and often repeated, that the mysteries of the Bible are not such because God has sought to conceal truth, but because our own weakness or ignorance makes us incapable of comprehending or appropriating truth. The limitation is not in His purpose, but in our capacity. Of those very portions of Scripture often passed by as impossible to be understood, God desires us to understand as much as our minds are capable of receiving. ‘All Scripture is given by inspiration of God,’ that we may be ‘thoroughly furnished unto all good works.’ II Timothy 3:16, 17.” Education, 171.

6 When was the message of the book of Daniel to be clearly understood? Daniel 12:4, 9. Compare Daniel 8:26.

NOTE: “His wonderful prophecies, as recorded by him in chapters 7 to 12 of the book bearing his name, were not fully understood even by the prophet himself; but before his life labors closed, he was given the blessed assurance that ‘at the end of the days’—in the closing period of this world’s history—he would again be permitted to stand in his lot and place. It was not given him to understand all that God had revealed of the divine purpose. ‘Shut up the words, and seal the book,’ he was directed concerning his prophetic writings; these were to be sealed ‘even to the time of the end.’ ‘Go thy way, Daniel,’ the angel once more directed the faithful messenger of Jehovah; ‘for the words are closed up and sealed till the time of the end. . . . Go thou thy way till the end be: for thou shalt rest, and stand in thy lot at the end of the days.’ Daniel 12:4, 9, 13. As we near the close of this world’s history, the prophecies recorded by Daniel demand our special attention, as they relate to the very time in which we are living. With them should be linked the teachings of the last book of the New Testament Scriptures. Satan has led many to believe that the prophetic portions of the writings of Daniel and of John the revelator cannot be understood. But the promise is plain that special blessing will accompany the study of these prophecies. ‘The wise shall understand’ (verse 10), was spoken of the visions of Daniel that were to be unsealed in the latter days.” Prophets and Kings, 547, 548.

“A Little Book Open”

7 How was John shown in vision the unsealing of Daniel’s book? Revelation 10:1, 2.

NOTE: “The book that was sealed was not the book of Revelation, but that portion of the prophecy of Daniel which related to the last days. The Scripture says, ‘But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end: many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased’ (Daniel 12:4). When the book was opened, the proclamation was made, ‘Time shall be no longer.’ (See Revelation 10:6.) The book of Daniel is now unsealed, and the revelation made by Christ to John is to come to all the inhabitants of the earth. By the increase of knowledge a people is to be prepared to stand in the latter days.” Selected Messages, Book 2, 105.

8 When Daniel’s book was first studied by the church, how was John shown its effect? Revelation 10:8–10.

NOTE: “Though, like the first disciples, they themselves had failed to understand the message which they bore, yet it had been in every respect correct. In proclaiming it they had fulfilled the purpose of God, and their labor had not been in vain in the Lord. Begotten ‘again unto a lively hope,’ they rejoiced ‘with joy unspeakable and full of glory.’ Both the prophecy of Daniel 8:14, ‘Unto two thousand and three hundred days; then shall the sanctuary be cleansed,’ and the First Angel’s Message, ‘Fear God, and give glory to Him; for the hour of His judgment is come,’ pointed to Christ’s ministration in the Most Holy Place, to the investigative judgment, and not to the coming of Christ for the redemption of His people and the destruction of the wicked. The mistake had not been in the reckoning of the prophetic periods, but in the event to take place at the end of the 2300 days. Through this error the believers had suffered disappointment, yet all that was foretold by the prophecy, and all that they had any Scripture warrant to expect, had been accomplished. At the very time when they were lamenting the failure of their hopes, the event had taken place which was foretold by the message, and which must be fulfilled before the Lord could appear to give reward to His servants.” The Great Controversy, 423, 424.

“That, When It Is Come to Pass, Ye May Believe”

9 How did Christ explain the purpose of predictive prophecy? John 13:19.

NOTE: “They should know the things that will come to pass before the closing up of the world’s history. These things concern our eternal welfare, and teachers and students should give more attention to them. —6T 128, 129 (1900). We should study the great waymarks that point out the times in which we are living. —4MR 163 (1895). Those who place themselves under God’s control, to be led and guided by Him, will catch the steady tread of the events ordained by Him to take place. —7T 14 (1902). We are to see in history the fulfillment of prophecy, to study the workings of Providence in the great reformatory movements, and to understand the progress of events in the marshaling of the nations for the final conflict of the great controversy. —8T 307 (1904).” Last Day Events, 14, 15.

10 Against what danger are we warned by Peter? II Peter 1:20, 21.

NOTE: “The Lord has called out a people from among men, and has given them great light and knowledge in regard to His word. In Exodus 31:12–18 He declares the relation which they are to sustain to Him. God has not authorized us to exalt men, and keep the minds of students directed toward those who evidently do not bear the signature which He has placed upon His chosen people. ‘Verily My Sabbaths ye shall keep: for it is a sign between Me and you throughout your generations; that ye may know that I am the Lord that doth sanctify you.’ Those who refuse to stand as God’s chosen people, sanctified and made holy through doing His word, are as guideposts pointing in the wrong direction. So also are they who would encourage the youth to study as a pattern the so-called wise men, who have not been wise enough to know God and do His commandments.” Counsels to Writers and Editors, 116, 117.

“So Shall Ye Prosper”

11 What sound counsel did Jehoshaphat give to his people? II Chronicles 20:20.

NOTE: “The light of prophecy still burns for the guidance of souls, saying, ‘This is the way, walk ye in it.’ It shines on the pathway of the just to commend, and on the way of the unjust to lead to repentance and conversion. Through its agency sin will be rebuked and iniquity unmasked. It is progressive in the performance of its duty to reflect light on the past, the present, and the future. If those who have received the light will appreciate and respect the testimonies of the Lord, they will see the religious life in a new light. They will be convicted. They will see the key that unlocks the mysteries that they have never understood. They will lay hold of the precious things that God has given them to profit withal and will be translated from the kingdom of darkness into God’s marvelous light.” My Life Today, 42.

12 What was the source of the prophets’ messages? II Peter 1:21.

NOTE: “Some have neglected the Bible under the erroneous impression that the indwelling of the Spirit was preferable to the study and guidance of the Scriptures. Such will be exposed to Satan’s snares and fatal delusions. The Holy Spirit and the Word are in perfect harmony. The Holy Spirit inspired the Scriptures and always leads to the Scriptures. . . . Everything in the religious world is to be tried by the Scriptures. ‘To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them’ (Isaiah 8:20). The claimed enlightenment of the Spirit within is to be tested and tried by the Word of God, which is the detector of the pure wheat. . . .” That I May Know Him, 195.

Food for Life – Lemon Pie

“And what is so rare as a day in June?
Then, if ever, come perfect days;
Then Heaven tries earth if it be in tune,
And over it softly her warm ear lays.”

“I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.” Romans 12:1, 2. We have no right to wantonly violate a single principle of the laws of health.” Counsels on Health, 50. Then, citing Daniel’s experience, Mrs. White continues: “He did not conform to the habits of the courtiers in eating and drinking, but purposed in his heart that he would not eat of the king’s meat nor drink of his wines. This was not a hastily formed, wavering purpose, but one that was intelligently formed and resolutely carried out. Daniel honored God; and the promise was fulfilled to him. ‘Them that honor Me I will honor.’ I Samuel 2:30. The Lord gave him ‘knowledge and skill in all learning and wisdom,’ and he had ‘understanding in all visions and dreams’ (Daniel 1:17); so that he was wiser than all in the king’s courts, wiser than all the astrologers and magicians in the kingdom.

“Those who serve God in sincerity and truth will be a peculiar people, unlike the world, separate from the world. Their food will be prepared, not to encourage gluttony or gratify a perverted taste, but to secure to themselves the greatest physical strength, and consequently the best mental [and physical] conditions. . . .

“Excessive indulgence in eating and drinking is sin. Our heavenly Father has bestowed upon us the great blessing of health reform, that we may glorify Him by obeying the claims He has upon us. . . . Those who are looking for the soon appearing of their Saviour should be the last to manifest a lack of interest in this great work of reform. . . . An aimless life is a living death. The mind should dwell upon themes relating to our eternal interests. This will be conducive to health of body and mind. . . .

“The world should be no criterion for us. It is fashionable to indulge the appetite in luxurious food and unnatural stimulus, thus strengthening the animal propensities, and crippling the growth and development of the moral faculties. There is no encouragement given to any of the sons or daughters of Adam that they may become victorious overcomers in the Christian warfare unless they decide to practice temperance in all things. If they do this, they will not fight as one that beateth the air.” Ibid.

In this wonderful book, we are further counseled that, “It is a terrible sin to abuse the health that God has given us; for every abuse of health enfeebles us for life and makes us losers, even if we gain any amount of education.” Ibid., 186.

“In the preparation of a people for the Lord’s Second Coming, a great work is to be accomplished through the promulgation of health principles. The people are to be instructed in regard to the needs of the physical organism and the value of healthful living as taught in the Scriptures, that the bodies which God has created may be presented to Him a living sacrifice, fitted to render Him acceptable service. There is a great work to be done for suffering humanity in relieving their sufferings by the use of the natural agencies that God has provided, and in teaching them how to prevent sickness by the regulation of the appetites and passions. The people should be taught that transgression of the laws of nature is transgression of the laws of God.” Ibid., 206. [All Emphasis supplied.]

Recipe – Lemon Pie

1 cup pineapple juice
1 cup fresh orange juice
¼ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 tablespoon fresh grated lemon rind
10 dates or ½ cup of packed, chopped dates
¼ cup water
1/3 cup cornstarch
¼ teaspoon sea salt

Place all ingredients in a blender and blend till smooth. Cook in saucepan on low heat, stirring constantly, till thick. Then pour into a backed cashew pie crust. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Children’s Story – Taking Aim

Sally’s teacher was well known for his elaborate object lessons. An object lesson is one that teaches you something special.

One particular day, Sally walked into class and gasped. She knew that they were in for a fun day, for hanging on the wall, behind the teacher’s desk, was a big red and white target. Beside it on a small table were many darts. The students were very curious and whispered and talked among themselves, wondering why the target was on the wall.

After calling the class to order, Dr. Smith told the students to draw a picture of someone they disliked or someone who had made them angry. After the pictures were drawn, he said, he would allow the students to throw darts at the person’s picture.

The class laughed in anticipation. Sally’s girlfriend drew a picture of a girl who had stolen something from her. Another friend drew a picture of his little brother. Sally drew a picture of a former friend. She put a great deal of detail into her drawing, even drawing pimples on the girl’s face. Sally was pleased at the overall effect she had achieved.

The class lined up, and as each student approached the front of the line, he presented his picture to Dr. Smith, who promptly pinned it to the dart board. Then the fun began. With much laughter and hilarity, the students whipped their darts toward their picture. Some of the students threw with such force that their target was ripping apart, while the other students clapped and cheered them on.

Sally was really getting into the spirit of this game and could hardly wait for her turn. Imagine her disappointment when Dr. Smith, because of time limits, asked the students to return to their seats, and Sally had not had a chance to throw her darts. She sat thinking about how unfair it was that she did not have a chance to throw any darts at her target. Sally was trying to deal with her disappointment as Dr. Smith walked over and began removing the target from the wall. The students all gasped loudly, as the target came down, revealing a picture of Jesus. . . .

A complete hush fell over the room as each student viewed the mangled face of Jesus; holes and jagged marks covered His face, and both of His eyes were pierced.

Then Dr. Smith turned to the class and spoke these words, “Inasmuch as ye have done it unto the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto Me.” Matthew 25:40.

No other words were necessary; the tear-filled eyes of each student focused only on the picture of Christ. They could not take their eyes from His face. His eyes seemed to look directly into their own, guilt-ridden, eyes.

“And the King will answer and say to them, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you di it to Me.’” Ibid. (NKJV)

Restoring the Temple – Sunlight: Another Perspective

Truly the light is sweet, and a pleasant thing it is for the eyes to behold the sun. Ecclesiastes 11:7.

With all the bad press sunshine has received in recent years, you would think the healthiest of all creatures would be moles, cave-dwelling bats, and coal miners. Indeed, certain cultures have spent an inordinate amount of time seeking a deep tan, that, coupled with other poor health practices, leads to premature aging of the skin and certain cancers.

Life is as dependent on sunlight as it is on water. There are multiple reasons why it is so necessary for life. All warmth on earth comes from the sun’s heat-producing rays, without which all life would quickly freeze and die. The sun is a mega-powerhouse of energy, a portion of which is transferred to energy in the human body. Earth receives ten times more energy from sunlight than from our planet’s entire supply of fossil fuels each year.1 Plants require specific segments of the color spectrum, or they will fail and die. A portion of the same ultraviolet (UV) light that causes tanning and sunburning is also responsible for producing vitamin D in the body. Incidentally, UV light does not produce vitamin D through glass, so sitting in a bright spot in your home will not help you get your daily dose.

UV rays from the sun change a chemical in your skin into an inactive form of vitamin D, which is then converted in the liver and kidneys to an active form of vitamin D.2 You need it, because it is an essential nutrient that helps your body absorb calcium from the food you eat. In this way, the vitamin aids in maintaining healthy bones and muscles. The vitamin is also available through supplementation, but as with other nutrients, vitamin D is best when received from the most natural of sources, the sun.

Sunlight is also an effective bactericide. Ellen White alludes to this when she recommends that even our bedding should be “exposed to the sunlight.” Child Guidance, 124.

This is not an excuse to throw caution to the wind, however. Doctors Dail and Thomas3 recommend a daily sunbath of no more than 30 minutes, which is sufficient for production of vitamin D. Healthy sun exposure takes into account time of day (never during midday), temperature, weather, altitude, time of year and your skin’s sensitivity to being burnt. Use common sense. It is always a good idea to discuss your plans with your doctor, especially if you are taking medications. If you are not accustomed to sun exposure, and particularly if you are light-skinned, it is a good idea to start slowly, as little as three minutes a day, until you are able to increase to the thirty minute maximum. Always keep the above factors in mind and keep your eyes closed during the sunbath.

In her writings, Ellen White repeatedly reinforces the necessity of sunlight as part of our God-given plan of health. She wrote a pledge, shown here only in part, that includes this valuable healing gift. “I must eat those things which will be for my very best good physically, and I must take special care to have my clothing such as will conduce to a healthful circulation of the blood. I must not deprive myself of exercise and air. I must get all the sunlight that it is possible for me to obtain. I must have wisdom to be a faithful guardian of my body. . . . And when I violate the laws God has established in my being, I am to repent and reform, and place myself in the most favorable condition under the doctors God has provided—pure air, pure water, and the healing, precious sunlight.” Ibid., 367. [Emphasis supplied.] Would it not be beneficial if we were to say this pledge to ourselves regularly?

The messenger tells us that sunlight is also an essential part of raising healthy children. “The little children should come especially close to nature. Instead of putting fashion’s shackles upon them, let them be free like the lambs, to play in the sweet, fresh sunlight. Point them to shrubs and flowers, the lowly grass and the lofty trees, and let them become familiar with their beautiful, varied, and delicate forms. Teach them to see the wisdom and love of God in His created works; and as their hearts swell with joy and grateful love, let them join the birds in their songs of praise.” Ibid., 48.

Astronaut John Glenn once said, “I don’t know what you could say about a day in which you have seen four beautiful sunsets.” Not many of us will get to have such an experience in this finite life, but in the meantime, we can enjoy a bit of sunlight every day, knowing that, with a little caution, we are doing good things for our bodies. We need to take advantage of the healing gift of sunlight, until “The sun shall be no more thy light by day; neither for brightness shall the moon give light unto thee: but the Lord shall be unto thee an everlasting light, and thy God thy glory.” Isaiah 60:19.

Inspiration – . . .”Surface religion”—Will it Stand the Test?

“Keep your soul in the love of God, and make straight paths for your feet, lest the lame be turned out of the way. Keep your taper kindled from the divine altar, and then let your light shine to others. Let your confidence be wholly in the Lord. Learn meekness and lowliness of heart. You need to put your entire trust in Jesus Christ. He is the only safe Teacher. The great question now is the salvation of the soul. If you walk with Christ, you learn wisdom by communion with him, as did Enoch.

“It is the privilege of every soul to reach the highest standard. Stop at no low standard in your experience. Beware of admitting any worldly or selfish motives whatever in the settlement of the great question between God and your soul. The Lord requires all that there is of you through constant improvement of every talent, that you may make a success in the formation of Christian character. By faith let the Holy Spirit instruct you, that you may not only receive but impart the heavenly grace.

“All is to be surrendered to Christ. There must be no reservation. God expects more of us than we give him. It is an insult to Jehovah to claim to be Christians and yet speak and act as worldlings. We cannot yield the smallest place to worldly policy. We need to be sanctified every hour through the belief of the truth. It is not safe for one day to neglect putting on the Lord Jesus Christ. We can make no compromise. We want not to make extra efforts for a more tasteful development of Christianity. We want Christ formed within, the hope of glory.

“Catch the divine rays of light from Christ, and you need not try to shine; for you will reflect His image, which is formed within. You cannot help shining. Others will see the Christ side of the character revealed. There is a great deal of rough work to do, but the grace of Christ will be revealed in spirit, in speech, in experience. The salvation of souls is the grand object to be kept before us, and mental and spiritual improvement will be seen in all our ways, habits, and practices. They will be fragrant with the atmosphere which surrounds Jesus Christ. We all have now, and ever have had, the sympathies of the divine intelligences. Heavenly beings cooperate with us in the battle as we advance against fallen angels and fallen men to press the battle into new territories, even where Satan’s seat is.

“Young men who have little experience in the self-denial that Christ practiced, will be constantly urging the necessity of a more tasteful development of Christianity than we are wont to meet with, even among those who have long known the truth. I agree that there is need of sanctified refinement. There is need of an emptying of self and an opening of the heart to an abiding Christ. But my heart has been much pained by the introduction among us of certain forms that ape worldly customs and fashions. In connection with the most precious sentiments of truth there is brought in an outside polish, a regard for that which is called taste, which has little of the true element which works by love and sanctifies the soul. That quality of refinement which is but an outside polish and which is esteemed by the world is of little value with God. In everyday life we must have an abiding Christ, who is working constantly to conform all our attributes to the image of the divine.

“That surface religion talked of so glibly by the tongue that prates of the beautiful, I have learned the value of to my sorrow. Many who with flippant words are ever ready to speak of elevation and refinement do not act as though they had any practical knowledge of that which their tongues express. Their poetical religion is not the religion that will stand test and trial. I have learned to my sorrow that they have little respect for true Christ-like piety, little desire for the sanctification of the Spirit of God unto true holiness. To exalt a theory which will exalt self is their great ambition. To conform to the divine plan does not suit their frothy ideas.

“O what deceptions are upon those who are looking for the beautiful and poetic in their speculations. They hear not the voice of the One who gave His life to self-denial, to humiliation, to suffering and a cruel, ignominious death to make it possible for human beings to keep the Law of God. They can do this only by heeding the invitation, ‘Come unto Me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you, and learn of Me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For My yoke is easy, and My burden is light’ (Matthew 11:29, 30). These are the lessons the great Teacher has given us. We are to take His yoke of submission, restraint, and obedience, in meekness and lowliness of heart. Those who yoke up with Christ will find rest and peace.

“Exhibitions of self, strife for the supremacy, putting the false in the place of the true, will be developed in a certain class. In theory they represent the God of the beautiful, the divine author of the material world. They observe the beautiful representations in His operations and plans, and they weave into poems a sentimentalism that tells for nothing in making their

own character-building symmetrical. Their work is not in harmony with the plan of God for fitting men to unite with the angelic family and to become children of the heavenly King. All these soaring ideas God counts as nothingness. There is a supposed inspiration which is modified by hereditary taste and by education and temperament.

“Let us hear what Christ has to say. ‘Whosoever will come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me’ (Mark 8:24). To follow in the footsteps of Christ is to practice true godliness. All who are partakers with Christ of His humiliation and self-sacrifice will be constantly learning how to lay upon the foundation stone gold, silver, precious stones, not the material represented as wood, hay, and stubble, which will perish in the fire of the last days. We want true sanctification, true wholeness to God. We would not encourage the soaring element in the make up of character, but we would encourage true solidity. What is the chaff to the wheat? The world is not to be saved through the divine songs and melodies of even the angelic host in heaven. These angels have their appointed work to do on earth. They find a world in gross darkness as to what constitutes sin, which is the transgression of the law of God. Darkness, vice, deception, prevarication, dishonesty, exist among those who profess godliness. And there is a call made, ‘Lift up thy voice like a trumpet, and show My people their transgression, and the house of Jacob their sins. Yet they seek Me daily, . . . as a nation that did righteousness and forsook not the ordinance of their God’ (Isaiah 58:1).

“What have God’s people to learn? ‘Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God’ (1 Peter 5:6). ‘Draw nigh to God, and He will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners, and purify your hearts, ye doubleminded’ (James 4:8). There is work, solid work, to be done for every soul that shall stand in the great day of the Lord. ‘Therefore if any man be in Christ he is a new creature: old things are passed away, behold, all things are become new’ (2 Corinthians 5:17).

“The one in whose heart the grace of Christ abides is daily undergoing a transformation of character. He is preparing for the higher school, where all characters blend in a perfect whole. The divine harmonies of the heavenly intelligences would be out of place in the world. They would not be understood. For the world knoweth not God nor Jesus Christ whom He hath sent. Sin and violence are in the land. In transgression of the Law of God, fallen men with their sinful tempers, appetites, tastes, and attributes have arrayed themselves in hostility to God. They resemble the inhabitants of the Noachian world.

“He who would be an effective co-worker with God in His broad vineyard must do most diligent, earnest, hard work; he must meet the people where they are. If they will not come to the gospel feast to which the call of Christ invites them, then God’s messengers must accommodate themselves to the circumstances, and bear the message to them in house to house labor, thus extending their ministry to the highways and by ways, giving the last message to the world.–Letter 164, 1899. (To Edson and Emma White, October 20, 1899.)”

Manuscript Releases, vol. 8, 10-13.

Released May 20, 1977.

The Lion and the Lamb

“And one of the elders saith unto me, Weep not: behold, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, hath prevailed to open the book, and to loose the seven seals thereof.

“And I beheld, and, lo, in the midst of the throne and of the four beasts, and in the midst of the elders, stood a Lamb as it had been slain.” . . . Revelation 5:5, 6.

“Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.” John 1:29.

The Lion is Also the Lamb

Scholars state that John wrote Revelation before his gospel and epistles. It is no’t likely anyone had a question as to who the slain Lamb was, but with John’s gospel record of John the Baptist speaking, as Jesus came toward him, all discussion certainly would have been settled. And perhaps the most beautiful of all religious concepts takes on deeper meaning—the Lion is also a Lamb.

Think about that. We long for the time when the lion and the lamb shall lie down together. Truthfully, until the fullness of the lion and the lamb are reproduced in a final generation, until a balance is developed in us of all that is strong and noble, meek and lowly, Jesus cannot come, for the world has yet to have that witness manifested.

Are You Unbalanced?

Everyone reading this is probably yet unbalanced. I make no sweeping assertions. It is entirely possible that Enochs walk among us. I just do not know any. Perhaps you do. In the balance God desires to recreate ,we are likely to be more lion or more lamb at present.

“Judah is a lion’s whelp: from the prey, my son, thou art gone up: he stooped down, he couched as a lion, and as an old lion; who shall rouse him up? The scepter shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh come; and unto him shall the gathering of the people be.” Genesis 49:9, 10.

Characteristics of the Lion

Let us take a look at some of the characteristics of our Lion in Scripture. Whether as the young lion ready to pounce, or the old lion lying in his regal nobility, who shall rouse him? He holds the scepter; the kingship, the royalty, the nature of rule is unmistakable.

We are supposed to be children of a King, brethren of a King, espoused to a King. It is stated in different ways throughout the Bible. As such, we are to exemplify the highest traits of nobility and the welfare a king would bestow upon his children, his family, and his bride. As a people, have we not been given the finest counsels and opportunities in regard to doctrine, health, clothing, education and service in the King’s world? Unless we are living up to the privileges and responsibilities of all the counsel of God, we cannot possibly be fit representatives to complete His work on earth.

Far too many among God’s professed people are unbalanced when it comes to these things. This writer has met many who maintain a sharp and keen awareness of last day events and doctrinal matters, but their dietary practices are obviously lacking. Or the reverse is seen—people are deeply into health reform who seem to have little grasp of the issues that confront us as a people living at the end of all time. In areas of modesty, the education of our children and the influences that Satan seeks to derail our noble calling, how less than noble and regal is the life of God’s professed church! As the world sinks into rank, deplorable foolishness and sordid immorality, how closely the church follows but a mile or two behind; so where the world once was decades ago, the professed people of God are today! How true shall it be that those ready for translation will be viewed as odd, singular, straight-laced extremists. Ah! But this is not permission to be “gazing stocks” either. Balance under the roof of our King. Balance. Jesus carried Himself in the perfect balance of noble traits and terrible exactness. Ask anyone in the temple when He cleansed it! Ask the Jewish leaders when He dismantled their whole program in Matthew 23!

“And it came to pass, when Jesus had ended these sayings, the people were astonished at His doctrine: For He taught them as one having authority, and not as the scribes.” Matthew 7:28, 29.

Lions Have Authority

A lion roars, and everything around pays attention. I heard a lion roar at a zoo once. I not only felt it in my stomach, but, amazingly enough, it seemed to reverberate right through the ground into my feet. It was an awesome experience, indeed. And mind you, the lion was lying down! He was not angry. He was not shouting. He just had something to say, and you definitely paid attention.

So it was with Jesus. People were enthralled with His teaching, because they could see and perceive that He truly meant what He said. There was no equivocation in His voice. He knew what He believed, why He believed it, and how He needed to get His points across to the people. Oh, to have that perfect balance of authority in our own witnessing, that the world around us should know that we KNOW what we believe and why we believe it is God’s quest for our lives. The world will know, when God has a balanced, authoritative people.

“And Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit into Galilee: and there went out a fame of Him through all the region round about.” “And they were all amazed, and spake among themselves, saying, What a word is this! for with authority and power He commandeth the unclean spirits, and they come out.” Luke 4:14, 36.

Lions are Powerful

Among all carnivores, the big cats are the most powerful, and the lion is a most fearless creature. It will tangle with anything but a full-grown elephant. And even there, recent nighttime photography has shown lions bringing down young elephants five times their size, right in the midst of surprised herds, if food supplies grow too short. The lion is a powerful creature.

Jesus had power. At times it just exploded in a wealth of influence on those around Him. At other times it was an undertone, a sense that, even when He was only walking, people expected something to happen.

Oh, that God would bring power among His people, a fearlessness that would give us the true spirit of Protestantism to stand up against sin and all that is opposed to the kingdom of God and to proclaim the truth regardless of who or what resists and retaliates!

The entire planet is soon to be arranged in a final rebellion towards God and His people. Are we ready for this? Do we have the power from on high that moved the world in former times? We do not, and we best plead for it before we are surrounded by forces bent on our failure and destruction, as already exists against Christians in many parts of the world. We need power. We also need balance, that such power is not abused, misused, or taken for granted. God cannot entrust power to an unbalanced people.

Lions are Fierce Creatures

“If I sin, then thou markest me, and thou wilt not acquit me from mine iniquity. If I be wicked, woe unto me; and if I be righteous, yet will I not lift up my head. I am full of confusion; therefore see thou mine affliction; For it increaseth. Thou huntest me as a fierce lion: and again Thou shewest Thyself marvelous upon me.” Job 10:14–16.

Indeed! What a picture of God’s people in the coming time of trouble when it will seem as though Satan has won, and all is surely lost. Yet out of the terror of the moment arises the fierce and mighty Jesus to arrest the attention of the world and rescue His agonizing servants from a planet gone mad.

The Lion is a fierce creature. It is not an animal any other creature of the plains takes lightly. Though Job saw a fierceness in his situation, he still marveled at God. His character is beyond reproach. He knows what He is doing, despite our absolute ignorance of a situation.

The situation in Adventism has reached a major crisis, especially among those proclaiming the fullness of truth. All seems confusion. It is going to get worse. Oh yes, God will take the reigns. Praise His name for that. The terror will lie in whom He takes the reigns from and their wicked response. God will no longer be trifled with. When He comes down on the Romanism prevailing among a people professing to rejoice in light, His fierceness and their response will show an entanglement of commotion on which only God will have a handle.

“And when He had made a scourge of small cords, He drove them all out of the temple, and the sheep and the oxen; and poured out the changers’ money, and overthrew the tables; And said unto them that sold doves, ‘Take these things hence; make not My Father’s house an house of merchandise.’ And His disciples remembered that it was written, The zeal of thine house hath eaten Me up.” John 2:15–17.

Where are the lions, beloved? Where are the lions? God’s church needs lions!

“’I can of mine own self do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and My judgment is just; because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent Me.’” John 5:30.

“Then said Jesus unto them, ‘When ye have lifted up the Son of man, then shall ye know that I am He, and that I do nothing of Myself, but as My Father hath taught Me, I speak these things.’” John 8:28.

Characteristics of the Lamb

How dependent is the Lamb. How dependent was Jesus upon His Father. How dependent we should be in all things heard, believed, taught and lived. Without that dependence, failure is at the door. Without that dependence, self rises up; self tries to rule, and self corrupts the soul.

Make no mistake, sheep are not robots. They must eat where the Good Shepherd leads them, drink at the waters He provides, rest where He stops, and follow His voice wherever it leads. They have their part to do, and without it, they will die. Our dependence upon God’s power does not lessen the use of it in our lives. A gift is a gift. But a gift on a back shelf, or in a closet, is of no benefit to anyone. Though salvation by grace through faith is a gift from God, let no one deceive themselves that so prized a gift is to collect dust. It is anything but an ornament or knick-knack. Depending on His Father certainly did not lessen Jesus’ use of that connection. He is our example in all things.

Sheep are not necessarily busy. They lead fairly mundane lives. Like all illustrations using earthly things, it has its limitations. On the other hand, it is very possible to become so busy that all hearing of the Shepherd’s voice gets lost in the shuffles of life. Dependency on God is replaced by dependency on an employer, a paycheck, insurance companies, government, husbands, wives, preachers and leaders. The chain is only as strong as the weakest link. Everyone agrees, yet so much improper dependency exists in the church it keeps us in this world. We are not leaving it until complete dependency and cooperation with God becomes daily habit.

“’Which of you convinceth Me of sin? And if I say the truth, why do ye not believe Me?’” John 8:46.

“’Hereafter I will not talk much with you: for the prince of this world cometh, and hath nothing in Me.’” John 14:30.

The Lamb is Innocent

The innocent Lamb of God.—not guilty of any wrong, nothing in Him of corruption, nothing in Him of sinful practice and perpetuation, tempted in all points like as we are, yet without sin.

Beloved, we must have innocence before the throne of God. We must partake of the divine nature that we may escape the corruption that is in the world through lust. It is the hour of judgment! These are the final moments of earth’s history! Every thought, every word, every action, must be pure and holy, true and righteous, spotless and clean, if we are to be ready for translation. Jesus comes for a clean church, not a dirty one. He cannot come for a dirty church. He will not come for a dirty church.

Righteousness by faith, character perfection, IS the fullness of the balance of God in life. Let no one on earth denounce the work of God for this last generation. Oh fools and slow of heart to believe! Professors of true religion who deny the power of Jesus to cleanse His earthly temples from all defilement and impurity! Apostates! Ringleaders! False teachers with damnable heresies, denying the Lord that bought them. Would they be saved IN their sins or FROM their sins? Shall threads of compromise, worldliness and humanism be woven into a translation garment? Never! Those who perpetuate the lie that the commandments of God cannot be kept by one in Christ, walking after the Spirit, those who maintain that the righteousness of the law cannot be reproduced in those who maintain a living connection to the Vine, shall reap what they sow. Those who occupy positions of trust, in any institution, who allow so foul a doctrine to be held among its teachers and who feel their institution is beyond falling . . . how great the fall when it comes!

Will the innocent in Christ Jesus please stand up? No takers? Indeed. But the God of heaven knows. The Holy Spirit continues to work, and Jesus shall come for them when His character is reproduced in their lives. The forces of hell, especially among the religious, will show the anger of the dragon upon these lambs.

“Now I Paul myself beseech you by the meekness and gentleness of Christ, who in presence am base among you, but being absent am bold toward you.” II Corinthians 10:1.

Lambs Are Meek and Gentle

Here is where many display imbalance. It is often in the home where the familiarity of family life leads to various displays lacking in these traits of character among professed believers. We live in a world filled with aggression, anger, and hatred. Only through tenderness, gentleness and meekness can much of that wall be broken down, especially in homes where youth fall prey to the influences of this sinful world.

How many times I have seen parents demanding of their children, and I have thought, “How we learn so hard. If only they saw our broken hearts more than our frustration. If only they heard gentle entreaty, rather than military command. How different things might be.”

How many have been lost in the cracks of church life because of the lack of gentleness in the way they were approached? How many have given up because of the “in your face,” or self-righteous attitudes demonstrated? Ambassadors such as this, Jesus does not need. The balance is a fine one. The balance is so needed. Balance is everything. “And of some have compassion, making a difference: And others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire; hating even the garment spotted by the flesh.” Jude 22, 23.

“’Take My yoke upon you, and learn of Me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.’” Matthew 11:29.

Lambs Are Unthreatening

Lambs are certainly meek and lowly. They are so unthreatening. That is why children are so drawn to them. If you have ever attended an agricultural fair and walked through the sheep barn, you have seen how the children cannot get in enough petting! That must be why children loved Jesus. He was so unthreatening, at least to those with nothing to cover up and hide.

Being meek is not being a doormat for anyone. On the other hand, the Lamb was dumb before His shearers; He suffered patiently; there was no guile in His mouth, no reviling heard from His lips and no threatening.

We Need Balance

Balance. We all see ourselves in this mix somewhere. Some are far more the lion. Some, far more the lamb. Some will speak up in an instant and be a bull in a china shop, while others quietly go about their business, often saying nothing when a crisis hits.

Just so you understand the importance of all this, just so you understand how important Satan sees all this, behold, “Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.” Matthew 7:15.

“Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour.” I Peter 5:8.

Well, well. It appears Diabolos knows what God is striving for and seeks to get into the mix, which is to be expected. There is a counterfeit lion and a counterfeit lamb. We do well to know the difference, by experience, now, before it is too late.

Balance. While everything is about to enter a final time of perfect imbalance, a people shall arise and shine, fair as the moon, clear as the sun and terrible as an army with banners.

Seek God’s Balance

Beloved, do not delay; do not allow anything to keep you from the most glorious moment in the history of the universe. Seek the Lion. Seek the Lamb. Seek that balance that can be all things to all men.

Now, to give you an unbelievable mix of balance, God’s balance perfectly displayed and to be wondered at, look at these verses:

“And the kings of the earth, and the great men, and the rich men, and the chief captains, and the mighty men, and every bondman, and every free man, hid themselves in the dens and in the rocks of the mountains; And said to the mountains and rocks, Fall on us, and hide us from the face of Him that sitteth on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb: For the great day of His wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand?” Revelation 6:15–17. [Emphasis supplied.]

The wrath of a lamb? Could there be a more convoluted picture? What could possibly be more wondrous? Yet, it shall be so. A balance of Lion and Lamb so perfect the human race will be seized with a terror unimaginable, with a sense of rejection, of fear, of utter loss and hopelessness that calls forth a request of death, for to see the face of Him they have slighted and rejected is a fate worse than death.

But for God’s faithful it is the face of rescue, of triumph and victory! It is the face of acceptance, love and joy unspeakable. It is that Face that calls forth the shout, “Lo, this is our God; we have waited for Him, and He will save us!”

Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus.

A Day of Sabbath Rest

Are you tired? Are you weary of the rat race and busyness of life? Do you wish you could take a break from it all? In the Bible we are told that God took a break from His work. When God created the world, He worked for six days, and then “He rested on the seventh day from all His work, which He had made.” Genesis 2:2. Even the God of heaven and earth stopped His work for a day of refreshment. “For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, and on the seventh day He rested, and was refreshed.” Exodus 31:17.

A Day of Rest – Instituted at Creation

God understands our need to rest. He knows our need for a break, and in the very beginning (creation), He instituted a day for us to rest and be refreshed just as He was. “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy.” Exodus 20:8. When God says to “Remember the Sabbath day,” He is saying to remember the seventh day of creation, because in verse 11 He points us back to creation when the Sabbath was created, His example of rest. “For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day, and hallowed it.” Exodus 20:11.

A Day of Refreshment

The Sabbath was made for man to be a refreshment. “For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, and on the seventh day He rested, and was refreshed.” Exodus 31:17.

God’s Gift to “All Mankind”

“And He [Jesus] said unto them, ‘The Sabbath was made for man, and not man for the Sabbath.’” Mark 2:27. The Sabbath was instituted after the creation of man. It is meant to be a blessing, a gift, for all mankind. The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath.

A Rest from Labor

“Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work: but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work. For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day.” Exodus 20:9–11. “The weekly cycle of seven literal days, six for labor and the seventh for rest, which has been preserved and brought down through Bible history, originated in the great facts of the first seven days.” Spirit of Prophecy, vol.1, 86.

A Day of Holy Thoughts

This day is also given to us as a rest from all our wearisome thoughts. “God blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it: because that in it He had rested from all His work which God created and made.” Genesis 2:3.

Sabbath is a Day of Holy Worship to God

“Six days shall work be done: but the seventh day is the Sabbath of rest, an holy convocation; ye shall do no work therein: it is the Sabbath of the Lord in all your dwellings.” Leviticus 23:3.

“Remember” the Seventh-day Sabbath

The Sabbath was not instituted when God gave His law to the Jews. The Lord told the Jews to “remember” the Sabbath. The Sabbath was not a new commandment; it had already been given; it was instituted at creation for all mankind. The Jews were told to “remember” the Sabbath, because when they were in Egypt, they were slaves and had lost the importance of the Sabbath rest. The Lord tells mankind to “remember,” because He knew this was the one commandment the world would tend to forget.

Sabbath is an Everlasting Covenant

“Wherefore the children of Israel shall keep the Sabbath, to observe the Sabbath throughout their generations, for a perpetual covenant.” Exodus 31:16.

God’s Law is for All Mankind

Jesus says to us, “If ye love Me, keep My commandments.” John 14:15. “Remember that thou wast a servant in the land of Egypt, and that the Lord thy God brought thee out thence through a mighty hand and by a stretched out arm: therefore the Lord thy God commanded thee to keep the Sabbath day.” Deuteronomy 5:15. God’s law was given to the Jews, because He was their Saviour from bondage/Egypt. God’s law is given to us, because He is our Creator and our Saviour from bondage/world of sin.

Saturday – the Seventh-day is the Sabbath

When Jesus died for our sins, He hung on the cross and died on the sixth day of the week — Friday. He “rested on the Sabbath,” the seventh day — Saturday. He was raised from the dead on the first day — Sunday. As Creator, Jesus rested on the Sabbath. As Saviour, Jesus rested on the Sabbath. “And Jesus cried with a loud voice, and gave up the ghost. . . . And now when the even was come, because it was the preparation, that is, the day before the Sabbath.” Mark 15:37, 42. “And when the Sabbath was past, . . very early in the morning the first day of the week, they came unto the sepulchre at the rising of the sun.” Mark 16:1, 2. “And he took it [Jesus’ body] down, and wrapped it in linen, and laid it in a sepulchre that was hewn in stone, wherein never man before was laid. And that day was the preparation [Friday], and the Sabbath [Saturday] drew on. And the women also, which came with Him from Galilee, followed after, and beheld the sepulchre, and how His body was laid. And they returned, and prepared spices and ointments; and rested the Sabbath day according to the commandment. Now upon the first day of the week, very early in the morning, they came unto the sepulchre, bringing the spices which they had prepared, and certain others with them. . . . He is not here, but is risen. . . .” Luke 23:53–56; 24:1, 6. “When Jesus . . . said, ‘It is finished:’ and He bowed His head, and gave up the ghost. The Jews therefore, because it was the preparation, that the bodies should not remain upon the cross on the Sabbath day. . . .” John 19:30, 31.

Choose Ye This Day — A Blessing or a Curse

“Behold, I set before you this day a blessing and a curse; A blessing, if ye obey the commandments of the Lord your God, . . . And a curse, if ye will not obey the commandments of the Lord your God. . . .” Deuteronomy 11:26-28. “On the seventh day there shall be to you an holy day, a Sabbath of rest to the Lord: whosoever doeth work therein shall be put to death.” Exodus 35:2. “Ye shall keep the Sabbath therefore; for it is holy unto you: every one that defileth it . . . shall be cut off from among his people.” Exodus 31:14.

Sabbath keeping — A Special Blessing Given

“If thou turn away thy foot from the Sabbath, from doing thy pleasure on My holy day; and call the Sabbath a delight, the holy of the Lord, honourable; and shalt honour Him, not doing thine own ways, nor finding thine own pleasure, nor speaking thine own words: Then shalt thou delight thyself in the Lord; and I will cause thee to ride upon the high places of the earth, and feed thee with the heritage of Jacob thy father: for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it.” Isaiah 58:13, 14. “Blessed is the man. . . that keepeth the Sabbath from polluting it. . . .” Isaiah 56:2.