Bible Study Guides – Problems to Overcome (II)

July 20, 2014 – July 26, 2014

Key Text

“He also that received seed among the thorns is he that heareth the word; and the care of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, choke the word, and he becometh unfruitful.” Matthew 13:22.

Study Help: Counsels on Stewardship, 133–140.


“All money lovers … will one day cry in bitter anguish: ‘Oh, the deceitfulness of riches! I have sold my soul for money.’ ” Testimonies, vol. 3, 544, 545.


  • How does Satan often pervert the heart and the mouth of people who want to take business advantages? Jeremiah 6:13; Acts 5:3, 4.
  • How earnestly did King David struggle against a deceitful tongue? Psalms 52:2, 3; 101:7; 120:2; Proverbs 30:8.
  • As Christian stewards must often be in contact with deceitful people, what prayer should they send up to the throne of grace? Psalm 43:1, last part.
  • How does God often permit a deceitful person to be the victim of his or her own tricks? Psalm 7:14–16.


  • How is a dishonest person described? Proverbs 6:12, 13, 14, 16–19.
  • How does the Lord consider those who are dishonest in their financial transactions? Deuteronomy 27:17–19; Proverbs 11:1; 20:23.

Note: “The accounts of every business, the details of every transaction, pass the scrutiny of unseen auditors, agents of Him who never compromises with injustice, never overlooks evil, never palliates wrong. …

“Against every evildoer God’s law utters condemnation. He may disregard that voice, he may seek to drown its warning, but in vain. It follows him. It makes itself heard. It destroys his peace. If unheeded, it pursues him to the grave. It bears witness against him at the judgment. A quenchless fire, it consumes at last soul and body.” Education, 144, 145.

  • What will happen to anything that is acquired dishonestly? Proverbs 13:11; 15:27; 21:6.

Note: “This is a question that demands consideration by every parent, every teacher, every student—by every human being, young or old. No scheme of business or plan of life can be sound or complete that embraces only the brief years of this present life and makes no provision for the unending future. Let the youth be taught to take eternity into their reckoning. Let them be taught to choose the principles and seek the possessions that are enduring—to lay up for themselves that ‘treasure in the heavens that faileth not, where no thief approacheth, neither moth corrupteth;’ to make to themselves friends ‘by means of the mammon of unrighteousness,’ that when it shall fail, these may receive them ‘into the eternal tabernacles’ (Luke 12:33; 16:9 RV).” Education, 145.


  • How are we warned to avoid partiality in our dealing with others? Leviticus 19:15.

Note: “Do not show partiality to one or more, and neglect other of your brethren because they are not congenial to you. Beware lest you deal harshly with those who you think have made mistakes, while others, more guilty and more deserving of reproof, who should be severely rebuked for their unChristlike conduct, are sustained and treated as friends.” The Review and Herald, March 12, 1895.

  • What does the Christian steward do when dealing with disadvantaged groups? Psalm 82:2–4.

Note: “God requires that His people should not allow the poor and afflicted to be oppressed. If they break every yoke and release the oppressed, and are unselfish and kindly considerate of the needy, then shall the blessings promised be theirs. If there are those in the church who would cause the blind to stumble, they should be brought to justice; for God has made us guardians of the blind, the afflicted, the widows, and the fatherless. The stumbling block referred to in the word of God does not mean a block of wood placed before the feet of the blind to cause him to stumble, but it means much more than this. It means any course that may be pursued to injure the influence of their blind brother, to work against his interest, or to hinder his prosperity.

“A brother who is blind and poor and diseased, and who is making every exertion to help himself that he may not be dependent, should be encouraged by his brethren in every way possible. But those who profess to be his brethren, who have the use of all their faculties, who are not dependent, but who so far forget their duty to the blind as to perplex and distress and hedge up his way, are doing a work which will require repentance and restoration before God will accept their prayers. And the church of God who have permitted their unfortunate brother to be wronged will be guilty of sin until they do all in their power to have the wrong righted.” Testimonies, vol. 3, 519, 520.


  • While the Lord is our great Counselor, from whom may we seek counsel on this earth? Proverbs 13:20.

Note: “The only safe course for the youth is to mingle with the pure, the holy, and thus natural tendencies to evil will be held in check. By choosing for their companions such as fear the Lord, they will seldom be found disbelieving God’s word, entertaining doubts and infidelity. The power of a truly consistent example is very great for good.” In Heavenly Places, 172.

  • What happens when we seek counsel from those who are not in harmony with the principles of Christian stewardship? Proverbs 14:7; II Thessalonians 3:6.

Note: “Let the youth choose the influence of, and become associated with, men and women of bad principles and practices … and they are polluted. Silent and unconscious influences weave their sentiments into their lives, become a part of their very existence, and they walk on the very brink of a precipice and sense no danger. They learn to love the words of the smooth tongued, the honeyed words of the deceiver, and are restless, uneasy, and unhappy unless they are carried to the pinnacle of someone’s flattery. … To walk in the counsel of the ungodly is the first step toward standing in the place of sinners and sitting in the seat of the scornful.” In Heavenly Places, 172.

“It is wrong for Christians to associate with those whose morals are loose. An intimate, daily intercourse which occupies time without contributing in any degree to the strength of the intellect or morals is dangerous. If the moral atmosphere surrounding persons is not pure and sanctified, but is tainted with corruption, those who breathe this atmosphere will find that it operates almost insensibly upon the intellect and heart to poison and to ruin. It is dangerous to be conversant with those whose minds naturally take a low level. Gradually and imperceptibly those who are naturally conscientious and love purity will come to the same level and partake of and sympathize with the imbecility and moral barrenness with which they are so constantly brought in contact.” Testimonies, vol. 3, 125.


  • How much of our earthly riches do we retain when we die? Psalm 49:16, 17; Ecclesiastes 5:13–15; I Timothy 6:7.
  • What can we take with us to the great judgment of humanity? Matthew 16:26; Proverbs 11:4; Isaiah 31:7.

Note: “The redeemed will be welcomed to the home that Jesus is preparing for them. There their companions will not be the vile of earth, liars, idolaters, the impure, and unbelieving; but they will associate with those who have overcome Satan and through divine grace have formed perfect characters. Every sinful tendency, every imperfection, that afflicts them here has been removed by the blood of Christ, and the excellence and brightness of His glory, far exceeding the brightness of the sun, is imparted to them. And the moral beauty, the perfection of His character, shines through them, in worth far exceeding this outward splendor. They are without fault before the great white throne, sharing the dignity and the privileges of the angels.

“In view of the glorious inheritance that may be his, ‘what shall a man give in exchange for his soul’ (Matthew 16:26)? He may be poor, yet he possesses in himself a wealth and dignity that the world could never bestow. The soul redeemed and cleansed from sin, with all its noble powers dedicated to the service of God, is of surpassing worth; and there is joy in heaven in the presence of God and the holy angels over one soul redeemed, a joy that is expressed in songs of holy triumph.” Steps to Christ, 126.


1 What are the results of a deceptive communication?

2 How does dishonesty affect the one who deceives?

3 How do Christian stewards treat others in their financial dealings?

4 Who is the Christian steward’s financial counselor?

5 What should remind us of the temporal nature of material wealth?

© 2010 Reformation Herald Publishing Association, Roanoke, Virginia. Reprinted by permission.

Bible Study Guides – Problems to Overcome (I)

July 13, 2014 – July 19, 2014

Key Text

“For where envying and strife is, there is confusion and every evil work.” James 3:16.

Study Help: Testimonies, vol. 5, 242–248.


“Whether we recognize it or not, we are stewards, supplied from God with talents and facilities, and placed in the world to do a work appointed by Him.” Education, 137.


  • Explain the origin of pride, envy, and ambition for position—and its bitter results. Isaiah 14:12–15.

Note: “It was pride and ambition that prompted Lucifer to complain of the government of God, and to seek the overthrow of the order which had been established in heaven. Since his fall it has been his object to infuse the same spirit of envy and discontent, the same ambition for position and honor, into the minds of men.” Patriarchs and Prophets, 403.

  • Describe a carnal mind—a candidate for the second death? I Corinthians 3:3; Romans 8:6, 7; James 3:14, 15.

Note: “If you open your heart to envy and evil surmising, the Holy Spirit cannot abide with you. Seek for the fullness that is in Christ.” Testimonies, vol. 8, 191.

  • How does envy affect your personality and well-being? Job 5:2; Proverbs 14:30; 27:4.

Note: “The envious man diffuses poison wherever he goes, alienating friends and stirring up hatred and rebellion against God and man. He seeks to be thought best and greatest, not by putting forth heroic, self-denying efforts to reach the goal of excellence himself, but by standing where he is and diminishing the merit due to the efforts of others.” Testimonies, vol. 5, 56.


  • In what sense does covetousness violate the commandments of God? Exodus 20:17. What do we learn about this sin from the experience of Achan? Joshua 7:20–26.

Note: “The deadly sin that led to Achan’s ruin had its root in covetousness, of all sins one of the most common and the most lightly regarded. While other offenses meet with detection and punishment, how rarely does the violation of the tenth commandment so much as call forth censure. The enormity of this sin, and its terrible results, are the lessons of Achan’s history.

“Covetousness is an evil of gradual development. Achan had cherished greed of gain until it became a habit, binding him in fetters well-nigh impossible to break. While fostering this evil, he would have been filled with horror at the thought of bringing disaster upon Israel; but his perceptions were deadened by sin, and when temptation came, he fell an easy prey.

“Are not similar sins still committed, in the face of warnings as solemn and explicit? We are as directly forbidden to indulge covetousness as was Achan to appropriate the spoils of Jericho. God has declared it to be idolatry. We are warned, ‘Ye cannot serve God and mammon’ (Matthew 6:24). ‘Take heed, and beware of covetousness’ (Luke 12:15). ‘Let it not be once named among you’ (Ephesians 5:3). We have before us the fearful doom of Achan, of Judas, of Ananias and Sapphira. Back of all these we have that of Lucifer, the ‘son of the morning,’ who, coveting a higher state, forfeited forever the brightness and bliss of heaven. And yet, notwithstanding all these warnings, covetousness abounds.” Patriarchs and Prophets, 496, 497.

  • What should be our relationship with those who are controlled by the spirit of covetousness? Ephesians 5:5; I Corinthians 5:11.
  • Among what other sinners will covetous persons be kept out of the kingdom of God? I Corinthians 6:10.


  • As envy and covetousness take root in the heart, what follows? Job 5:2, 4, 5.

Note: “The Scriptures describe the condition of the world just before Christ’s second coming. James the apostle pictures the greed and oppression that will prevail. He says, ‘Go to now, ye rich men … ye have heaped treasure together for the last days. Behold, the hire of the labourers who have reaped down your fields, which is of you kept back by fraud, crieth: and the cries of them which have reaped are entered into the ears of the Lord of sabaoth. Ye have lived in pleasure on the earth, and been wanton. Ye have nourished your hearts, as in a day of slaughter. Ye have condemned and killed the just; and he doth not resist you’ (James 5:1–6). This is a picture of what exists today. By every species of oppression and extortion, men are piling up colossal fortunes, while the cries of starving humanity are coming up before God.” Christ’s Object Lessons, 170.

  • What often happens when wealth is selfishly retained by their greedy owners? Ecclesiastes 5:13.
  • How do wicked people reveal what is in their heart and mind? Psalm 10:3.

Note: “Men in their blindness boast of wonderful progress and enlightenment; but to the eye of Omniscience are revealed the inward guilt and depravity. The heavenly watchers see the earth filled with violence and crime. Wealth is obtained by every species of robbery, not robbery of men only, but of God. Men are using His means to gratify their selfishness. Everything they can grasp is made to minister to their greed. Avarice and sensuality prevail. Men cherish the attributes of the first great deceiver. They have accepted him as God, and have become imbued with his spirit.” Testimonies, vol. 6, 14, 15.


  • The concept of pride is highly valued in this world. How does Scripture describe pride? Proverbs 16:5.
  • What will the Lord do to the proud? Proverbs 15:25; 16:18, 19; Luke 18:14. Describe what the servant of the Lord was shown regarding the outcome of the proud.

Note: “I saw that God hates pride, and that all the proud and all that do wickedly shall be stubble, and the day that cometh shall burn them up.” Testimonies, vol. 1, 132.

  • Rather than pride, what is seen in the life of the Christian steward? James 4:6.

Note: “All who study the life of Christ and practice His teaching will become like Christ. Their influence will be like His. They will reveal soundness of character. They are established in the faith, and will not be overcome by the devil because of vanity and pride. They seek to walk the humble path of obedience, doing the will of God. Their character exerts an influence that tells for the advancement of the cause of God and the healthful purity of His work. …

“In these thoroughly converted souls the world has a witness to the sanctifying power of truth upon the human character. Through them Christ makes known to the world His character and will. In the lives of God’s children is revealed the blessedness of serving the Lord, and the opposite is seen in those who do not keep His commandments. The line of demarcation is distinct. All who obey God’s commandments are kept by His mighty power amid the corrupting influence of the transgressors of His law. From the lowliest subject to the highest in positions of trust, they are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation.” Evangelism, 315, 316.


  • What will the love of money bring you? I Timothy 6:10; Ecclesiastes 5:10.

Note: “The Bible condemns no man for being rich, if he has acquired his riches honestly. Not money, but the love of money, is the root of all evil. It is God who gives men power to get wealth; and in the hands of him who acts as God’s steward, using his means unselfishly, wealth is a blessing, both to its possessor and to the world. But many, absorbed in their interest in worldly treasures, become insensible to the claims of God and the needs of their fellow men. They regard their wealth as a means of glorifying themselves. They add house to house, and land to land; they fill their homes with luxuries, while all about them are human beings in misery and crime, in disease and death. Those who thus give their lives to self-serving are developing in themselves, not the attributes of God, but the attributes of the wicked one.” The Ministry of Healing, 212, 213.

  • What is the top priority in the life of every faithful steward? I Corinthians 2:2; Matthew 6:33; Luke 9:25.

Note: “When the sinner reaches the cross, and looks up to the One who died to save him, he may rejoice with fullness of joy; for his sins are pardoned. Kneeling at the cross, he has reached the highest place to which man can attain.” The Review and Herald, April 29, 1902.


1 How will envy impact your stewardship?

2 What kind of association should you have with persons who do not follow the principles of Christian stewardship?

3 What is the result of living a greedy life?

4 What is the basis of your financial decisions?

5 Explain the danger of becoming preoccupied with material goods.

© 2010 Reformation Herald Publishing Association, Roanoke, Virginia. Reprinted by permission.

Bible Study Guides – Qualities of Genuine Stewardship

July 6, 2014 – July 12, 2014

Key Text

“Thou art my portion, O Lord: I have said that I would keep thy words.” Psalm 119:57.

Study Help: Child Guidance, 150–168.


“All that we possess, our mental and physical powers, all the blessings of the present and the future life, are delivered to us stamped with the cross of Calvary.” The Review and Herald, December 14, 1886.


  • What do Christian stewards realize about all of their earthly possessions? Job 1:21.

Note: “All things belong to God. Men may ignore His claims. While He bountifully bestows His blessings upon them, they may use His gifts for their own selfish gratification; but they will be called to give an account for their stewardship.

“A steward identifies himself with his master. He accepts the responsibilities of a steward, and he must act in his master’s stead, doing as his master would do were he presiding. His master’s interests become his. The position of a steward is one of dignity because his master trusts him. If in any wise he acts selfishly and turns the advantages gained by trading with his lord’s goods to his own advantage, he has perverted the trust reposed in him.” Testimonies, vol. 9, 246.

  • Why are Christian stewards content with their earthly possessions? Psalm 37:16; Proverbs 15:16; I Timothy 6:8.

Note: “We think of Jesus the Creator of all the worlds, and how He came into the world as a poor man. He had not where to lay His head. So poverty is no disgrace. Sin is a disgrace.” The Ellen G. White 1888 Materials, 1514.


  • Since Christian stewards are content with their worldly possessions, how do they treat the earthly possessions of others? Deuteronomy 16:19.

Note: “In the last great issue between Christ’s followers and the powers of darkness, Satan offers his bribes to men and women. Some sell themselves for naught; for what shall it profit a man, if he gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?” Manuscript Releases, vol. 19, 243.

“We must feel a special interest in looking upon the things of others—not to covet them, not to find fault with them, not to remark upon them and present them in a false light, but to do strict justice in all things to our brethren and all with whom we have any dealings.” That I May Know Him, 176.

  • What does God want us to realize about the evils of partiality? Deuteronomy 24:17; Romans 2:11.

Note: “No distinction on account of nationality, race, or caste, is recognized by God. He is the Maker of all mankind. All men are of one family by creation, and all are one through redemption. Christ came to demolish every wall of partition, to throw open every compartment of the temple courts, that every soul may have free access to God. His love is so broad, so deep, so full, that it penetrates everywhere. It lifts out of Satan’s influence those who have been deluded by his deceptions, and places them within reach of the throne of God, the throne encircled by the rainbow of promise. In Christ there is neither Jew nor Greek, bond nor free.” Prophets and Kings, 369, 370.

“The reason for all division, discord, and difference is found in separation from Christ. Christ is the center to which all should be attracted; for the nearer we approach the center, the closer we shall come together in feeling, in sympathy, in love, growing into the character and image of Jesus. With God there is no respect of persons. …

“The Son of the infinite God, the Lord of life and glory, descended in humiliation to the life of the lowliest, that no one might feel himself excluded from His presence. He made Himself accessible to all. He did not select a favored few with whom to associate and ignore all others.” That I May Know Him, 99.


  • What blessing is given to all who follow integrity in all their business transactions? Proverbs 10:9.
  • What should link the action, the words, and even the thoughts of the Christian steward? Proverbs 12:5, 17; 14:2.

Note: “By the terms of our stewardship we are placed under obligation, not only to God, but to man.” Education, 139.

  • How does the Lord consider those who are dishonest in business? Proverbs 16:11; 20:10.

Note: “It is neither the magnitude nor the seeming insignificance of a business transaction that makes it fair or unfair, honest or dishonest. By the least departure from rectitude we place ourselves on the enemy’s ground, and may go on, step by step, to any length of injustice. A large proportion of the Christian world divorce religion from their business. Testimonies, vol. 4, 337.

“An honest man, according to Christ’s measurement, is one who will manifest unbending integrity. Deceitful weights and false balances, with which many seek to advance their interests in the world, are abomination in the sight of God. Yet many who profess to keep the commandments of God are dealing with false weights and false balances. When a man is indeed connected with God, and is keeping His law in truth, his life will reveal the fact; for all his actions will be in harmony with the teachings of Christ. He will not sell his honor for gain. His principles are built upon the sure foundation, and his conduct in worldly matters is a transcript of his principles. Firm integrity shines forth as gold amid the dross and rubbish of the world. Deceit, falsehood, and unfaithfulness may be glossed over and hidden from the eyes of man, but not from the eyes of God. The angels of God, who watch the development of character and weigh moral worth, record in the books of heaven these minor transactions which reveal character. If a workman in the daily vocations of life is unfaithful and slights his work, the world will not judge incorrectly if they estimate his standard in religion according to his standard in business.” Ibid., 310, 311.


  • What is the reward for the humble Christian steward? Psalm 37:11; Proverbs 22:4; Matthew 18:4.

Note: “Supreme love for God and unselfish love for one another, this is the best gift that the heavenly Father can bestow. Let all believers draw near to God and to one another, that God may draw near to them. No man is to be exalted as supreme. No man is to suppose that he is infallible because he has been enlightened by God and used by Him in bringing souls to the truth. Our endowments are valuable only as they are used as God’s entrusted talents to magnify the truth. The one through whom God works is never to exalt himself, never to seek to rule. As a wise steward, he is to do his work in sincerity and humility. He is to do God service by imparting what he has received, by speaking the truth in love in a clear, decided manner. Thus he is to enlighten others, remembering always that God only can impress the mind and purify the heart.” Manuscript Releases, vol. 21, 275.

  • What must characterize all who seek to be among God’s elect? Proverbs 29:23.

Note: “Love, compassion, and tenderness are to be revealed amongst us. Put on, as the elect of God, mercy and kindness. The sins that were practiced before conversion are to be put off with the old man. With the new man, Christ Jesus, are to be put on ‘kindness, humbleness of mind, meekness, longsuffering’ (Colossians 3:12).

“Those who have risen with Christ to walk in newness of life are the elect of God. They are holy unto the Lord, and are acknowledged by Him as His beloved. As such, they are under solemn covenant to distinguish themselves by showing humility of mind. They are to clothe themselves in garments of righteousness. They are separate from the world, from its spirit, its practices, and they are to reveal that they are learning of Him who says, ‘I am meek and lowly in heart’ (Matthew 11:29). If they realize that they have died with Christ, if they keep their baptismal vow, the world will have no power to draw them aside to deny Christ. If they live the life of Christ in this world, they are partakers of the divine nature. Then, when Christ, who is our life, shall appear, they also will appear with Him in glory.” Manuscript Releases, vol. 19, 236, 237.


  • What characteristics were shown to John the Revelator when he saw the people of God in these last days? Revelation 14:12.
  • Where do we find instructions concerning legitimate business principles? Deuteronomy 5:32; 25:13–15; Luke 11:28.

Note: “There is no branch of legitimate business for which the Bible does not afford an essential preparation. Its principles of diligence, honesty, thrift, temperance, and purity are the secret of true success. These principles, as set forth in the book of Proverbs, constitute a treasury of practical wisdom. Where can the merchant, the artisan, the director of men in any department of business, find better maxims for himself or for his employees than are found in these words of the wise man: [Proverbs 22:29; 14:23; 13:4; 23:21; 20:19; 17:27; 20:3; 4:14; 6:28; 13:20; 18:24 quoted.] …

“How many a man might have escaped financial failure and ruin by heeding the warnings, so often repeated and emphasized in the Scriptures. …

“These are principles with which are bound up the well-being of society, of both secular and religious associations. It is these principles that give security to property and life. For all that makes confidence and co-operation possible, the world is indebted to the law of God, as given in His word, and as still traced, in lines often obscure and well-nigh obliterated, in the hearts of men.” Education, 135–137.


1 How can you be content with your earthly possessions?

2 How should you treat others in your financial transactions?

3 What blessings will you receive if you are honest in all your transactions?

4 How can humility be manifested in my life in practical ways?

5 Name some benefits pertaining to financial honesty.

© 2010 Reformation Herald Publishing Association, Roanoke, Virginia. Reprinted by permission.

Bible Study Guides – The Steward

June 29, 2014 – July 5, 2014

Christian Stewardship

Key Text

“Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct thy paths.” Proverbs 3:5, 6.

Study Help: The Ministry of Healing, 500–502.


“That man might not lose the blessed results of benevolence, our Redeemer formed the plan of enlisting him as His co-worker.” The Review and Herald, August 25, 1874.


  • What is the basis of Christian stewardship? Psalm 37:4–6.

Note: “If the word of God is cherished as an abiding principle in the heart, and held fast under all and every circumstance, man is brought, with his entrusted capabilities, under [subjection] to the Lord Jesus Christ. His undivided powers, even his thoughts, are brought into captivity to Christ. This is true sanctification. All the parts of the experience blend in complete harmony. He is ‘wanting in nothing.’ He does not keep part to himself, to do with just as he pleases.” In Heavenly Places, 190.

  • Explain the primary motives of the Christian steward and what is the chief asset sought. Matthew 6:33, 34; Philippians 3:8.

Note: “[Matthew 6:22 quoted.]

“Singleness of purpose, wholehearted devotion to God, is the condition pointed out by the Saviour’s words. Let the purpose be sincere and unwavering to discern the truth and to obey it at whatever cost, and you will receive divine enlightenment.” Thoughts from the Mount of Blessing, 91.


  • A steward manages another’s property. Name some important things of which we are stewards. I Corinthians 4:1, 2.

Note: “Those with whom God has entrusted His truth, must possess the same beneficent spirit that Christ manifested. They must adopt the same broad plans of action. They should have a kind, generous spirit toward the poor, and in a special sense feel that they are God’s stewards. They must hold all they have—property, mental powers, spiritual strength—as not their own, but only lent them to advance the cause of Christ in the earth. Like Christ, they should not shun the society of their fellow-men, but should seek it with the purpose of bestowing upon others the heavenly benefits they have received from God.” Gospel Workers, 335.

  • Where does the Christian steward accumulate wealth? Matthew 6:19–21, 24, 33.

Note: “God desires us to choose the heavenly in place of the earthly. He opens before us the possibilities of a heavenly investment. He would give encouragement to our loftiest aims, security to our choicest treasure. He declares, ‘I will make a man more precious than fine gold; even a man than the golden wedge of Ophir’ (Isaiah 13:12). When the riches that moth devours and rust corrupts shall be swept away, Christ’s followers can rejoice in their heavenly treasure, the riches that are imperishable.” Christ’s Object Lessons, 374.

  • How do Christian stewards handle the wealth entrusted to them by their Master? I Timothy 6:18, 19; Proverbs 19:17.

Note: “All should feel that they are not proprietors, but stewards, and that the time is coming when they must give an account for the use they have made of their Lord’s money. Means will be needed in the cause of God. With David they should say: ‘All things come of Thee, and of Thine own have we given Thee’ (I Chronicles 29:14).” Testimonies, vol. 5, 382.


  • What should the Christian steward consider in the face of an economic downturn? Philippians 4:13; Romans 8:28.
  • Why is your approach to financial matters important? Proverbs 16:2.
  • What warnings come to Christian stewards with regard to our attitudes and motives? I John 2:15, 16.

Note: “Satan is constantly presenting inducements to God’s chosen people to attract their minds from the solemn work of preparation for the scenes just in the future. He is in every sense of the word a deceiver, a skillful charmer. He clothes his plans and snares with coverings of light borrowed from heaven. He tempted Eve to eat of the forbidden fruit by making her believe that she would be greatly advantaged thereby. Satan leads his agents to introduce various inventions and patent rights and other enterprises, that Sabbath-keeping Adventists who are in haste to be rich may fall into temptation, become ensnared, and pierce themselves through with many sorrows. He is wide awake, busily engaged in leading the world captive, and through the agency of worldlings he keeps up a continual pleasing excitement to draw the unwary who profess to believe the truth to unite with worldlings. The lust of the eye, the desire for excitement and pleasing entertainment, is a temptation and snare to God’s people. Satan has many finely woven, dangerous nets which are made to appear innocent, but with which he is skillfully preparing to infatuate God’s people. There are pleasing shows, entertainments, phrenological lectures, and an endless variety of enterprises constantly arising calculated to lead the people of God to love the world and the things that are in the world. Through this union with the world, faith becomes weakened, and means which should be invested in the cause of present truth are transferred to the enemy’s ranks. Through these different channels Satan is skillfully draining the purses of God’s people, and for it the displeasure of the Lord is upon them.” Testimonies, vol. 1, 550, 551.


  • What surrounds the true Christian steward? Psalm 32:10.
  • What qualities are present in someone who puts his or her trust fully in the Lord? Proverbs 3:5, 6; Job 23:12.

Note: “The psalmist says, ‘Trust in the Lord, and do good; so shalt thou dwell in the land, and verily thou shalt be fed’ (Psalm 37:3). ‘Trust in the Lord.’ Each day has its burdens, its cares and perplexities; and when we meet how ready we are to talk of our difficulties and trials. So many borrowed troubles intrude, so many fears are indulged, such a weight of anxiety is expressed, that one might suppose we had no pitying, loving Saviour ready to hear all our requests and to be to us a present help in every time of need.” Steps to Christ, 121.

  • Describe some lessons from nature that can give instruction to the Christian steward. Matthew 6:25–30.

Note: “Consider, says Jesus, how the lilies grow; how, springing from the cold, dark earth, or from the mud of the river bed, the plants unfold in loveliness and fragrance. Who would dream of the possibilities of beauty in the rough brown bulb of the lily? But when the life of God, hidden therein, unfolds at His call in the rain and the sunshine, men marvel at the vision of grace and loveliness. Even so will the life of God unfold in every human soul that will yield itself to the ministry of His grace, which, free as the rain and the sunshine, comes with its benediction to all. It is the word of God that creates the flowers, and the same word will produce in you the graces of His Spirit.

“God’s law is the law of love. He has surrounded you with beauty to teach you that you are not placed on earth merely to delve for self, to dig and build, to toil and spin, but to make life bright and joyous and beautiful with the love of Christ—like the flowers, to gladden other lives by the ministry of love.” Thoughts from the Mount of Blessing, 97.


  • What does the Christian steward do upon discovering the truest riches of the universe? Luke 15:8, 9; I Thessalonians 5:18.

Note: “Forgetting our own difficulties and troubles, let us praise God for an opportunity to live for the glory of His name. Let the fresh blessings of each new day awaken praise in our hearts for these tokens of His loving care. When you open your eyes in the morning, thank God that He has kept you through the night. Thank Him for His peace in your heart. Morning, noon, and night, let gratitude as a sweet perfume ascend to heaven.” The Review and Herald, June 2, 1910.

“Have we not reason to talk of God’s goodness and to tell of His power? When friends are kind to us we esteem it a privilege to thank them for their kindness. How much more should we count it a joy to return thanks to the Friend who has given us every good and perfect gift. Then let us, in every church, cultivate thanksgiving to God. Let us educate our lips to praise God in the family circle.” My Life Today, 170.

  • For what does the Christian steward give the greatest thanks? Psalm 119:14, 72, 127.

Note: “The glorious possibilities set before Israel could be realized only through obedience to God’s commandments. The same elevation of character, the same fullness of blessing—blessing on mind and soul and body, blessing on house and field, blessing for this life and for the life to come—is possible for us only through obedience.” Christ’s Object Lessons, 305.


1 How can you demonstrate commitment to the cause of the gospel?

2 What is the job description of a Christian steward?

3 How does your attitude affect your financial decision-making?

4 What is necessary to put God totally in control of your finances?

5 What do you discover when you count your blessings?

© 2010 Reformation Herald Publishing Association, Roanoke, Virginia. Reprinted by permission.

Recipe – Seared Polenta with Chunky Blueberry Sauce


½ cup fresh or frozen blueberries

1 ½ tsp. lemon juice

1 Tbsp. water

1 tsp. olive oil

1 Tbsp. honey

4 polenta slices

¼ tsp. freshly grated lemon zest

Combine blueberries, water, honey, lemon zest and juice in a small saucepan. Simmer until the sauce has thickened. Meanwhile, heat oil in a medium nonstick skillet. Cook polenta slices until golden on both sides. Top with the blueberry sauce.

Food – Best Good-for-You Foods

It would be well for us to do less cooking and to eat more fruit in its natural state. Let us teach the people to eat freely of the fresh grapes, apples, peaches, pears, berries, and all other kinds of fruit that can be obtained. Let these be prepared for winter use by canning.” Testimonies. Vol. 7, 134.

“Intemperate eating is often the cause of sickness, and what nature most needs is to be relieved of the undue burden that has been placed upon her. In many cases of sickness, the very best remedy is for the patient to fast for a meal or two, that the overworked organs of digestion may have an opportunity to rest. A fruit diet for a few days has often brought great relief to brain workers. Many times a short period of entire abstinence from food, followed by simple, moderate eating, has led to recovery through nature’s own recuperative effort. An abstemious diet for a month or two would convince many sufferers that the path of self-denial is the path to health.” The Ministry of Healing, 235.

Green Beans

High-fiber foods like green beans can help you prevent weight gain and even promote weight loss—without dieting.

Boosting fiber by 8 grams for every 1,000 calories consumed resulted in losing 4 ½ pounds.

Also try raspberries, chickpeas and strawberries.


Watermelon is a good source of vitamin C. It also has lycopene, an antioxidant that may help protect against heart disease and some types of cancer.

Eating foods that are full of water, such as watermelon (92 percent), helps keep you satisfied on fewer calories. (Interestingly enough, drinking water alongside foods doesn’t have the same effect.)

Also try cucumbers (95 percent water), salad greens (90 percent), and strawberries (91 percent).


The diverse range of polyphenol—health-promoting plant compounds that include athocyanins and ellagic acid—provided from berries, like blueberries, can help keep your heart healthy.

Eating just under a cup of mixed berries daily for 8 weeks can increase levels of “good” HDl cholesterol and lower blood pressure.

Also try red raspberries and strawberries.


Eating more vitamin-C-rich foods—such as tomato—may be a secret to smoother skin.

Vitamin Cs can have youthful effects on skin, like lowering the risk of wrinkles and age-related dryness in middle-age women. Its antioxidant properties help protect against ultraviolent in keeping skin firm via collagen synthesis.

Also try oranges, strawberries, and broccoli.

Children’s Story – Making Up

Mrs. Morton had noticed for several mornings that something had gone wrong with little Donna May. The child seemed as happy as usual at the breakfast table, but when school-time drew near, she became restless. She took her hat and coat long before the hour and stationed herself at the window, looking up the street, as if waiting; yet when the time came, she went reluctantly, as though she had no heart to go.

When she came home at noon she was sadder than when she went.

“What grieves my little daughter?” asked her mother, as she came into the room.

“Oh, mother!” said Donna May, crying outright at a kind word. “You don’t know!”

“But I want to know,” said Mrs. Morton. “Perhaps I can help you.”

“Nobody can help me,” said Donna May. “Alice Barnes and I—we’ve always been friends, and now she’s mad at me.”

“What makes you think so?” asked her mother.

“Oh, I know! She always used to call for me mornings, and we were together at recess and everywhere. I wouldn’t believe it for the longest time; but it’s a week since she called for me, and she keeps away from me all the time.”

“Now that I know what Alice has done, dear, can you think of anything you did?”

“Why, mother! No, indeed, I don’t need to think. I thought too much of Alice.” Donna May cried again.

“There, my dear, don’t cry. You must find out why she keeps away from you. Very likely there is something that you never thought of.”

“I don’t want to ask her, mother. It’s her fault, and she ought to come to me.”

“I fear your pride is stronger than your love for Alice,” said mother. She was brushing Donna May’s hair as she spoke, and she stooped to give the girl’s forehead a loving kiss. Donna May knew that her mother was right, for she went straight to Alice when she saw her on the sidewalk after school, and said: “Alice Barnes, why are you mad at me?”

“I shouldn’t think you would ask me, Donna May Morton,” replied Alice, “when you’ve said such unkind things about me.”

“No such thing!” said May indignantly.

“Donna May,” said Alice, looking as solemn as her round, rosy face would let her, “Didn’t I hear you, with my own ears, telling Bess Porter that I was the most mischievous little thing you ever saw?”

Donna May looked blank for a moment, then burst into a laugh. Alice turned angrily away; but her friend caught her by the arm, and, choking down her laughter, said: “Alice, don’t you know I named my new canary bird after you? I was telling Bess about her, and how she tore her paper to pieces and scattered her seeds all over the floor.”

Alice stared and drew a long breath. Donna May’s eyes twinkled again and both girls forgot their grievances in a peal of hearty laughter.

“There, Alice,” said Donna May afterward, “if we ever misunderstand each other again, let’s speak about it at once. Perhaps it will be something as funny as this.”

Storytime Treasury, compiled by P.G. Temple, Harvestime Books, Altamont, Tennessee 37301.

Current Events – Climate Change

A new alarming report on climate change is expected to be released this week by the Federal government, the latest in a series of influential studies on the topic. A draft of the report includes a sobering forecast about how climate and weather conditions may change in the United States of America.

A recent street collapse after a heavy downpour in Baltimore is one example of extreme weather events that may be more common in the future according to a draft of the National Climate Assessment. The report says the warming is primarily driven by human activity and predicts temperatures in the United States could soar by as much as 10 degrees by the year 2100.

Snow and rain in the northeast could increase by nearly a third. Hurricanes in the southeast could be stronger with some areas called highly vulnerable to sea level rise. Wildfires in the southwest could increase with more intense drought conditions creating drier vegetation. The report also outlines the risk to our food supply. Activists who say that climate change threatens to completely alter the way that we live, the way we produce our food to where and how we live, have anticipated the findings of the draft report. The elderly, the sick, and the poor are the most vulnerable to the health impact according to the report and the future for our children is very unpredictable.

While policy makers debate climate change, the vast majority of climate scientists say it has already begun and is time for the country to prepare. NBC News, New York May 4, 2014.

Four years after the B.P. oil spill, the disaster is still causing death on the Mississippi delta. Twenty miles into the marsh the black tar has choked the life out of what was once a baby pelican nursery. As recently as a year ago there were pelicans seen but now there are just dead sticks. The tar is not the problem but the oily sheen that nobody has ever cleaned up. Tiny bacteria have absorbed the sheen and now wildlife officials worry it could be working its way into dolphins and other large predators. Increased numbers of dead dolphins are being seen coming ashore. It is true that there could be a number of things killing the dolphins along the Gulf coast. Scientists and lawyers are still trying to work out the oil’s exact environmental impact. B.P. has already spent more than $14 billion in cleanup efforts. Since the spill, many animal habitats have simply eroded away. Land bridges and islands that were once prevalent are now non-existent. But just one mile north there is some good news: the state bird of Louisiana is thriving. There are brown pelican eggs ready to hatch despite losing their old home to the oil slick. NBC News, Mississippi, May 4, 2014.

As I [Ellen White] hear of the terrible calamities that from week to week are taking place, I ask myself: What do these things mean? The most awful disasters are following one another in quick succession. How frequently we hear of earthquakes and tornadoes, of destruction by fire and flood, with great loss of life and property! Apparently these calamities are capricious outbreaks of seemingly disorganized, unregulated forces, but in them God’s purpose may be read. They are the means by which He seeks to arouse men and women to a sense of their danger.” Counsels for the Church, 355, 356.

Health – The Citrus Family – Oranges

The members of the citrus family have some amazing capabilities. Each have definite anti-cancer properties. It has been reported that because of the year round availability of citrus fruits, this is a probable reason for the drop in stomach cancer. A Dutch study found that the vitamin C content counteracts powerful carcinogens called Nitrosamines. A Swedish study ranked citrus along with carrots as the food most favored by people with the lowest rates of pancreatic cancer. American researchers found that citrus fruits have the power to lower blood cholesterol. Because of a high animal protein diet, which produces an acid condition in the body, many people suffer illness. A very successful way to neutralize the acid condition is to introduce alkaline mineral elements, which are found in citrus fruits.


The nutrients in oranges are plentiful and diverse. The fruit is low in calories, contains no saturated fats or cholesterol, but is rich in dietary fiber, pectin, which is effective in persons with excess body weight. Pectin, by its action as a bulk laxative, helps to protect the mucus membrane of the colon by decreasing its exposure time to toxic substances as well as by binding to cancer causing chemicals in the colon. Pectin has also been shown to reduce blood cholesterol levels by decreasing its re-absorption in the colon by binding to bile acids. It is an excellent source of vitamin C, which is a powerful natural antioxidant. Orange fruit contains a variety of phytochemicals, which act as antioxidants, free radical scavengers, anti-inflammatory and immune system modulators. They contain vitamin A, which is required for maintaining healthy mucus membranes and skin and is essential for vision. Consumption of natural fruits rich in flavonoids helps the body to protect from lung and oral cavity cancers.

Oranges contain a good amount of minerals like potassium and calcium. Potassium is an important component of cell and body fluids that helps control heart rate and blood pressure through countering sodium actions.

The University of Florida found that by drinking pure, freshly squeezed orange juice they could combat rubella, or German measles, by accelerating the appearance of rubella-fighting antibodies in the blood. Other scientists have shown that components of orange peel help kill bacteria and fungi as well as tending to lower blood cholesterol. But it is the pulp that contains the pectin, so it is more beneficial to eat the entire orange than drink the juice. In Canadian tests it was found that orange juice from supermarkets did not display any antiviral activity in test tube experiments.

  • Even though the orange “tastes acidic,” it actually has an alkaline effect in the digestive system and helps stimulate the digestive juices, relieving constipation.
  • Regular consumption of vitamin C retards the development of hardening of the arteries.
  • A compound in oranges has been found to help fight cancers of the mouth, skin, lung, breast, stomach and colon.
  • The high vitamin C content also acts as a good anti-oxidant that protects cells from the damage by free radicals.
  • The alkaloid found under the orange peel can reduce the liver’s production of cholesterol.
  • The anti-oxidants fight oxidative stress that is the main culprit in oxidizing the LDLs in the blood.
  • A high intake of flavonoids and vitamin C has been known to halve the risk of heart diseases.
  • Studies have shown that a flavonoid called hesperidin in oranges can lower high blood pressure.
  • The strong content of vitamin C stimulates white cells to fight infection, naturally building a good immune system.
  • Drinking orange juice daily can significantly drop the risk of formation of calcium oxalate stones in the kidney.
  • The anti-oxidant in orange help protect the skin from free radical damage known to cause signs of aging.
  • Consuming vitamin C rich foods helps to lower the incidence of peptic ulcers and in turn, reduce the risk of stomach cancer.
  • The abundance of polyphenols have been shown to provide protection against viral infections.

Kaye Sehm, Back to Eden Newsletter. Summer 2012, No. 49. P. O. Box 850, Lavington 2641, Australia

Question & Answer – How Was Jesus Strengthened by Angels?

“And there appeared an angel unto Him from heaven, strengthening Him.” Luke 22:43.

The Lord has given us, through the Spirit of Prophecy, the following details of the visit to Jesus by the angel while He was in Gethsemane.

“In this awful crisis, when everything was at stake, when the mysterious cup trembled in the hand of the sufferer, the heavens opened, a light shone forth amid the stormy darkness of the crisis hour, and the mighty angel who stands in God’s presence, occupying the position from which Satan fell, came to the side of Christ.

  • The angel came not to take the cup from Christ’s hand, but to strengthen Him to drink it, with the assurance of the Father’s love.
  • He came to give power to the divine-human suppliant.
  • He pointed Him to the open heavens, telling Him of the souls that would be saved as the result of His sufferings.
  • He assured Him that His Father is greater and more powerful than Satan, that His death would result in the utter discomfiture of Satan, and that the kingdom of this world would be given to the saints of the Most High.
  • He told Him that He would see of the travail of His soul, and be satisfied, for He would see a multitude of the human race saved, eternally saved.

“Christ’s agony did not cease, but His depression and discouragement left Him. The storm had in nowise abated, but He who was its object was strengthened to meet its fury. …

“The sleeping disciples had been suddenly awakened by the light surrounding the Saviour. They saw the angel bending over their prostrate Master. They saw him lift the Saviour’s head upon his bosom, and point toward heaven. They heard his voice, like sweetest music, speaking words of comfort and hope.” The Desire of Ages, 693, 694.

I must smile at this detail: “Standing in advance of His disciples He said, ‘Whom seek ye?’ They answered, ‘Jesus of Nazareth.’ Jesus replied, ‘I am He.’ As these words were spoken, the angel who had lately ministered to Jesus moved between Him and the mob. A divine light illuminated the Saviour’s face, and a dovelike form overshadowed Him. In the presence of this divine glory, the murderous throng could not stand for a moment. They staggered back. Priests, elders, soldiers, and even Judas, fell as dead men to the ground.

“The angel withdrew, and the light faded away.” [Emphasis added] Ibid., 694.