December 23 – 29, 2001
“I give unto them eternal life, and they shall never perish”
MEMORY VERSE: “But now being made free from sin, and become servants to God, ye have your fruit unto holiness, and the end everlasting life.” Romans 6:22.
STUDY HELP: Evangelism, 247; The Faith I Live By, 217.
THOUGHT TO REMEMBER: “If thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments.” Matthew 19:17.
“Christ gave Himself for sinners. With what anxiety for the salvation of souls we should be filled as we see human beings perishing in sin! These souls have been bought at an infinite price. The death of the Son of God on Calvary’s cross is the measure of their value. Day by day they are deciding whether they will have eternal life or eternal death.” Testimonies, vol. 8, 28, 29.
“Death by Sin”
1 What two alternatives are available to the human race? Romans 6:23; John 3:36.
NOTE: See Christ’s Object Lessons, 123.
2 Who was the first to teach that those who disobey God will never perish? Genesis 3:3–5.
NOTE: “The great original lie which he [Satan] told to Eve in Eden, ‘Ye shall not surely die,’ was the first sermon ever preached on the immortality of the soul. That sermon was crowned with success, and terrible results followed. He has brought minds to receive that sermon as truth, and ministers preach it, sing it, and pray it. After the Fall, Satan bade his angels make a special effort to inculcate the belief in man’s natural immortality; and having induced the people to receive this error, they were to lead them on to conclude that the sinner would live in eternal misery. Now the prince of darkness, working through his agents, represents God as a revengeful tyrant, declaring that He plunges into hell all those who do not please Him, and causes them ever to feel His wrath.…” The Faith I Live By, 178.
“What Shall I Do That I May Inherit Eternal Life?”
3 What did Jesus say is the first condition for receiving eternal life? Luke 13:3, 5.
NOTE: “Christ’s message to the people was, ‘Except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish.’ Luke 13:5. And the apostles were commanded to preach everywhere that men should repent. The Lord desires His servants today to preach the old gospel doctrine, sorrow for sin, repentance, and confession. We want old-fashioned sermons, old-fashioned customs, old-fashioned fathers and mothers in Israel. The sinner must be labored for, perseveringly, earnestly, wisely, until he shall see that he is a transgressor of God’s law, and shall exercise repentance toward God and faith toward the Lord Jesus Christ.” Evangelism, 179, 180.
4 What is the next condition for us to receive eternal life? John 3:15–17.
NOTE: “You are a sinner. You cannot atone for your past sins; you cannot change your heart and make yourself holy. But God promises to do all this for you through Christ. You believe that promise. You confess your sins and give yourself to God. You will to serve Him. Just as surely as you do this, God will fulfill His word to you. If you believe the promise,—believe that you are forgiven and cleansed,—God supplies the fact; you are made whole, just as Christ gave the paralytic power to walk when the man believed that he was healed. It is so if you believe it. Do not wait to feel that you are made whole, but say, ‘I believe it; it is so, not because I feel it, but because God has promised.’” Steps to Christ, 51.
“You may say that you believe in Jesus, when you have an appreciation of the cost of salvation. You may make this claim, when you feel that Jesus died for you on the cruel cross of Calvary; when you have an intelligent, understanding faith that His death makes it possible for you to cease from sin, and to perfect a righteous character through the grace of God, bestowed upon you as the purchase of Christ’s blood. The eyes of fallen men may be anointed with the eye-salve of spiritual comprehension, and they may see themselves as they really are,—poor, and miserable, and blind, and naked. They may be brought to realize their need of repentance toward God, and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ.” Review and Herald, July 24, 1888.
5 What further condition is required for us to receive eternal life? Matthew 19:16, 17. Compare John 5:24.
NOTE: “These words meet the individual cases of all. Are we willing to comply with the conditions? Will we obey God and keep His commandments? Will we be doers of the Word and not hearers only? God’s law is as immutable and unchangeable as His character. Whatever men may say or do to make it void does not change its claims or release them from their obligation to obey.” Faith and Works, 42
“This is Life Eternal”
6 What is an essential preparation for eternal life? John 17:3.
NOTE: See Maranatha, 76.
7 When we know God and recognize His voice, from what danger will we be protected? John 10:3–5, 27, 28. Compare John 6:68.
NOTE: “Christ is the Good Shepherd. He leads the way, calling upon His sheep to follow Him. Those who hear and obey His voice will follow His example in all things. Becoming acquainted with Him, they will grow daily more and more like Him. They will be meek and lowly, free from jealousy and envy. Do we hear Christ’s voice? Are we following him? It is of great importance that we know whether we are following the True Shepherd. In order to know this, we must search His word; for it is His voice speaking to us. ‘What saith the Scriptures?’ is to be our watchword at every step. In God’s word we may find an answer to every question.” Youth’s Instructor, October 3, 1901. See also Faith and Works, 56.
“Eat His Flesh and Drink His Blood”
8 What further condition for eternal life did Jesus give? John 6:51–55.
NOTE: See The Desire of Ages, 389.
9 How did Jesus stress the importance of hearkening to His Word? John 5:24.
NOTE: See Christ’s Object Lessons, 38.
10 How did Jesus show that reading the Bible is not enough? John 5:38, 39.
NOTE: “It is not enough to study the Bible as other books are studied. In order for it to be understood savingly, the Holy Spirit must move on the heart of the searcher. The same Spirit that inspired the Word must inspire the reader of the Word. Then will be heard the voice of heaven.…The mere reading of the Word will not accomplish the result designed of heaven; it must be studied and cherished in the heart. The knowledge of God is not gained without mental effort. We should diligently study the Bible, asking God for the aid of the Holy Spirit, that we may understand His Word. We should take one verse and concentrate the mind on the task of ascertaining the thought which God has put in that verse for us. We should dwell on the thought till it becomes our own, and we know ‘what saith the Lord.’ There is but little benefit derived from a hasty reading of the Scriptures. One may read the Bible through and yet fail to see its beauty or to comprehend its deep and hidden meaning. One passage studied until its significance is clear to the mind and its relation to the plan of salvation is evident, is of more value than the perusal of many chapters with no definite purpose in view and no positive instruction gained. Keep your Bible with you. As you have opportunity, read it; fix the texts in your memory. Even while you are walking the streets you may read a passage and meditate upon it, thus fixing it in mind.” In Heavenly Places, 138.
11 What quality of character will be found in those who receive eternal life? Romans 2:7.
NOTE: “We must all exercise faith.…We are exhorted to be sober and watch unto prayer, but this does not mean that we are to mourn and repine, like orphaned children. True, the struggle for continual advancement in the Christian life must be lifelong, but our advancement in the heavenly path may be hopeful. If we manifest an intense energy, proportionate to the object for which we are striving, even eternal life, we are made partakers of Christ and of all the rich graces He is willing and ready to give to those who by patient continuance in well doing seek for glory and honor and immortality. If we hold the beginning of our confidence steadfast unto the end we shall see the King in His glory.” That I May Know Him, 170.
12 What promise did Jesus make to those who have sacrificed in order to follow Him? Mark 10:30.
NOTE: “May it not be our great anxiety to succeed in this world; but may the burden of our souls be, How shall I secure the better world? What have I to do to be saved?…The position all must come into, is to value salvation dearer than earthly gain, to count everything but loss that they may win Christ. The consecration must be entire. God will admit of no reserve, of no divided sacrifice, no idol. All must die to self, and to the world. Then let us each renew our consecration to God daily. Everlasting life is worth a lifelong, persevering, untiring effort.” Our High Calling, 308.
By Gordon Anderson