Bible Study Guides – Faith in Practice

December 25, 2011 – December 31, 2011

Key Text

“I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see.” Revelation 3:18.

Study Help: Christ’s Object Lessons, 307–313.


“When we submit ourselves to Christ, the heart is united with His heart, the will is merged in His will, the mind becomes one with His mind, the thoughts are brought into captivity to Him; we live His life. This is what it means to be clothed with the garment of His righteousness. Then as the Lord looks upon us He sees, not the fig-leaf garment, not the nakedness and deformity of sin, but His own robe of righteousness, which is perfect obedience to the law of Jehovah.” Christ’s Object Lessons, 312.

1 God’s Plan for Man

  • What evidence is there that God’s plan for man has never changed? Matthew 5:48.

Note: “The Lord requires perfection from His redeemed family. He expects from us the perfection which Christ revealed in His humanity. Fathers and mothers especially need to understand the best methods of training children that they may co-operate with God.” Child Guidance, 477.

  • How can perfection be possible in an imperfect world? The battleground for the most deadly conflict ever fought on this planet is the human mind. What is the only one effective weapon? Philippians 2:5.

Note: “We are to enter the school of Christ, to learn from Him meekness and lowliness. Redemption is that process by which the soul is trained for heaven. This training means a knowledge of Christ. It means emancipation from ideas, habits, and practices that have been gained in the school of the prince of darkness. The soul must be delivered from all that is opposed to loyalty to God.” The Desire of Ages, 330.

2 A Most Precious Gift

  • God made man a free moral agent with the ability to choose. How was this demonstrated in the Garden of Eden? Genesis 2:16, 17.

Note: “The white robe of innocence was worn by our first parents when they were placed by God in holy Eden. They lived in perfect conformity to the will of God. All the strength of their affections was given to their heavenly Father. A beautiful soft light, the light of God, enshrouded the holy pair. This robe of light was a symbol of their spiritual garments of heavenly innocence. Had they remained true to God it would ever have continued to enshroud them. But when sin entered, they severed their connection with God, and the light that had encircled them departed. Naked and ashamed, they tried to supply the place of the heavenly garments by sewing together fig leaves for a covering.” Christ’s Object Lessons, 310, 311.

“This is the governing power in the nature of man, the power of decision, or of choice. Everything depends on the right action of the will.” Steps to Christ, 47.

“You need to drink daily at the fountain of truth, that you may understand the secret of pleasure and joy in the Lord. But you must remember that your will is the spring of all your actions.” Messages to Young People, 153.

3 Obstacles to Enjoying Freedom

  • What obstacle do we face in achieving that perfection of character? I Peter 5:8.

Note: “While Satan is constantly seeking to blind their minds to the fact, let Christians never forget that they ‘wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against wicked spirits in high places.’ Ephesians 6:12.” The Great Controversy, 510.

  • What two powers are seeking complete control of the mind to the exclusion of the other? Zechariah 3:1.

Note: “The enemy is preparing for his last campaign against the church. He has so concealed himself from view that many can hardly believe that he exists, much less can they be convinced of his amazing activity and power. They have to a great extent forgotten his past record; and when he makes another advance move, they will not recognize him as their enemy, that old serpent, but they will consider him a friend, one who is doing a good work. Boasting of their independence they will, under his specious, bewitching influence, obey the worst impulses of the human heart and yet believe that God is leading them. Could their eyes be opened to distinguish their captain, they would see that they are not serving God, but the enemy of all righteousness. They would see that their boasted independence is one of the heaviest fetters Satan can rivet on unbalanced minds.” Testimonies, vol. 5, 294.

4 Death Brings Life

  • How did Paul describe his battle with sin and the remedy for a sanctified life? Galatians 2:20.

Note: “When the soul surrenders itself to Christ, a new power takes possession of the new heart. A change is wrought which man can never accomplish for himself. It is a supernatural work, bringing a supernatural element into human nature. The soul that is yielded to Christ becomes His own fortress, which He holds in a revolted world, and He intends that no authority shall be known in it but His own. A soul thus kept in possession by the heavenly agencies is impregnable to the assaults of Satan. … The only defense against evil is the indwelling of Christ in the heart through faith in His righteousness. Unless we become vitally connected with God, we can never resist the unhallowed effects of self-love, self-indulgence, and temptation to sin. We may leave off many bad habits, for the time we may part company with Satan; but without a vital connection with God, through the surrender of ourselves to Him moment by moment, we shall be overcome.” The Desire of Ages, 324.

  • Those who are finally rejected refuse to surrender their whole hearts and affections. Why will not all who claim to be Christians be saved? Matthew 7:22, 23.

Note: “Saddest of all words that ever fell on mortal ear are those words of doom, ‘I know you not’ [Matthew 25:12]. The fellowship of the Spirit, which you have slighted, could alone make you one with the joyous throng at the marriage feast. In that scene you cannot participate. Its light would fall on blinded eyes, its melody upon deaf ears. Its love and joy could awake no chord of gladness in the world-benumbed heart. You are shut out from heaven by your own unfitness for its companionship.” Christ’s Object Lessons, 413.

5 The Wedding Garment

  • Will all who call on the Lord be saved? Matthew 7:21–23.

Note: “This robe, woven in the loom of heaven, has in it not one thread of human devising. Christ in His humanity wrought out a perfect character, and this character He offers to impart to us. ‘All our righteousness are as filthy rags.’ Isaiah 64:6. Everything that we of ourselves can do is defiled by sin.” Christ’s Object Lessons, 312.

  • When the king entered the feast, why was one man evicted? Matthew 22:11–14.

Note: “The guests at the marriage feast were inspected by the king. Only those were accepted who had obeyed his requirements and put on the wedding garment. So it is with the guests at the gospel feast. All must pass the scrutiny of the great King, and only those are received who have put on the robe of Christ’s righteousness.

“Righteousness is right doing, and it is by their deeds that all will be judged. Our characters are revealed by what we do. The works show whether the faith is genuine.” Christ’s Object Lessons, 312.


1 What process will bring man back to the same condition as he was in the beginning?

2 Above all other gifts offered to man, what was given with the most risk, yet the most valuable?

3 What is the source of the power behind all contentions and daily obstacles?

4 What does all nature reveal must happen for us to have life?

5 Why will not all who call themselves Christian be saved?

© 2005 Reformation Herald Publishing Association, Roanoke, Virginia. Reprinted by permission.

Bible Study Guides – A Call to Higher Ground

December 18, 2011 – December 24, 2011

Key Text

“The path of the just is as the shining light, that shineth more and more unto the perfect day.” Proverbs 4:18.

Study Helps: Early Writings, 64–67; The Ministry of Healing, 503–516.


“This very day the Lord desires us to reach a higher standard than we have ever reached in the past. Day by day we are to advance upward, ever upward, until it can be said of us as a people, ‘Ye are complete in him’ [Colossians 2:10].” The Upward Look, 202.


  • Is our call today merely to be “historic” Seventh-day Adventists after the pattern of our forefathers—or is it actually to be holier than they were? Proverbs 4:18; Luke 12:48, last part.

Note: “We shall not be approved of God in looking to the example of our fathers to determine our duty instead of searching the word of truth for ourselves. Our responsibility is greater than was that of our ancestors. We are accountable for the light which they received, and which was handed down as an inheritance for us, and we are accountable also for the additional light which is now shining upon us from the word of God.” The Great Controversy, 164.

  • Having studied the faith of the patriarchs, prophets, and pioneers this quarter, what should encourage us from what we have read? Romans 15:4; Hebrews 13:8.

Note: “God is as powerful to save from sin today as He was in the times of the patriarchs, of David, and of the prophets and apostles. The multitude of cases recorded in sacred history where God has delivered His people from their own iniquities should make the Christian of this time eager to receive divine instruction and zealous to perfect a character that will bear the close inspection of the judgment.” Testimonies, vol. 4, 15.


  • Describe the kind of faith that Christ would like to make more evident among His professed people. James 5:10, 11, 17, 18.

Note: “Our standard has been too low; our expectations have been too limited. We must make our aims higher than we have made them in the past; for it is possible for us to be filled with all the fullness of God, to have Christ abiding in our hearts by faith.” The Review and Herald, July 5, 1892.

  • What declaration of Christ reveals that faith will be a rare jewel by the time of His second coming? Luke 18:8.

Note: “He who waits for entire knowledge before he can exercise faith, will never be blessed of God.” The Spirit of Prophecy, vol. 2, 322.

“God will do marvelous things for those who trust in Him. It is because His professed people trust so much to their own wisdom, and do not give the Lord an opportunity to reveal His power in their behalf, that they have not more strength. He will help His believing children in every emergency if they will place their entire confidence in Him. He will work mightily for a faithful people who obey His word without questioning or doubt.” The Signs of the Times, July 19, 1899.

  • How is faith to be revealed as a vital element in those who escape the wrath of God in the last days? Revelation 14:12.
  • What does Jesus declare to every one of us, just as He did to Simon Peter? Luke 22:31, 32. How shall His pleas affect us? Romans 5:1, 2.


  • How does the writer of Hebrews appeal to us to attain to higher ground? Hebrews 6:1.
  • What are some points that we should prayerfully consider in order that such a goal may be accomplished? I John 2:6; 5:4, 5.

Note: “God has a much higher standard for His people to reach than they have reached in the past. What can I say that will give them a consciousness of the responsibility resting on them to be Christlike in word and deed? The lack of Bible religion necessitates much talk about what ought to be done. Did we live the words of Christ, we should be brought into such close contact with Him that we should know what to do in order to advance the work of God. When we take Christ as our example in character building, we shall make decided progress. When we are filled with a desire to be like our Saviour, when we refuse to weave self into the work that we do for the Lord, when we look away from finite counsel to the One who is too wise to err and too good to do us harm, we shall be strong in the strength of the Lord.

“In order to see God, we must humble ourselves. When we accept Christ’s words and Christ’s plans, we shall not place self where Christ should be. We shall not think of going contrary to His plain directions. We shall shun even the thought of self-exaltation.” The Review and Herald, November 24, 1910.

“There should be a decided change in the spirit and character of the work in the places where men and women have received increased light. What are they doing to warn those who do not understand that the Lord is soon coming? ‘Behold, the Lord cometh out of His place to punish the inhabitants of the earth for their iniquity: the earth also shall disclose her blood, and shall no more cover her slain.’ Isaiah 26:21. Who, I ask, is carrying a burden for the souls that are perishing out of Christ? Who will go forth without the camp, bearing the reproach? Who will leave pleasant homes and dear ties of relationship, and carry the precious light of truth to far-off lands? Every day, every moment, comes to those to whom have been entrusted the light of truth, weighted with the terrible significance that men and women in every land are preparing themselves for weal or for woe, fixing their destiny for eternity.” Testimonies, vol. 8, 53, 54.


  • How did the faithful men of old maintain their focus? Hebrews 11:13–16.
  • How should this inspire us all the more today? Romans 13:11, 12.

Note: “Brethren, the biographies of good men of the past will not meet the demand for this time. The Saviour whom you profess to love and serve wants you to have an experience of your own to relate. What do you believe? Is probation soon to close? Is the time at hand when the Judgment shall sit, and the books shall be opened, and we be judged according to our works?” The Review and Herald, December 20, 1881.

“I was pointed to the earth and saw that there would have to be a getting ready among those who have of late embraced the third angel’s message. Said the angel, ‘Get ready, get ready, get ready. Ye will have to die a greater death to the world than ye have ever yet died.’ I saw that there was a great work to do for them and but little time in which to do it.

“Then I saw that the seven last plagues were soon to be poured out upon those who have no shelter; yet the world regarded them no more than they would so many drops of water that were about to fall. I was then made capable of enduring the awful sight of the seven last plagues, the wrath of God. I saw that His anger was dreadful and terrible, and if He should stretch forth His hand, or lift it in anger, the inhabitants of the world would be as though they had never been, or would suffer from incurable sores and withering plagues that would come upon them, and they would find no deliverance, but be destroyed by them. Terror seized me, and I fell upon my face before the angel and begged of him to cause the sight to be removed, to hide it from me, for it was too dreadful. Then I realized, as never before, the importance of searching the Word of God carefully, to know how to escape the plagues which that Word declares shall come on all the ungodly who shall worship the beast and his image and receive his mark in their foreheads or in their hands. It was a great wonder for me that any could transgress the law of God and tread down His holy Sabbath, when such awful threatenings and denunciations were against them.” Early Writings, 64, 65.

“Clear the King’s highway. Lift up the standard higher and still higher.” Evangelism, 397.


  • What type of lifestyle were the heroes of faith willing to endure? Hebrews 11:37, 38. What experience of John is soon to be repeated? Hebrews 11:39, 40; Revelation 1:9.

Note: “[As it was with John exiled on Patmos,] so will it be with the remnant people of God who are scattered—some in the mountain fastnesses, some exiled, some pursued, some persecuted. When the voice of God is heard and the brightness of the glory is revealed, when the trial is over, the dross removed, they know they are in the presence of One who has redeemed them by His own blood. Just what Christ was to John in his exile He will be to His people who are made to feel the hand of oppression for the faith and testimony of Jesus Christ. … These were driven by the storm and tempest of persecution to the crevices of the rocks, but were hiding in the Rock of Ages; and in the fastnesses of the mountains, in the caves and dens of the earth, the Saviour reveals His presence and His glory. Yet a little while, and He that is to come will come and will not tarry.” That I May Know Him, 360.

  • How is Christ’s call-of-the-hour best summarized to each of us? Colossians 3:1–4.

Note: “Let us be willing to become pilgrims and strangers here [on earth], that we may gain a better country, even a heavenly. The way of the cross is an onward, upward path. As you advance, seeking the things that are above, you will necessarily leave in the distance the things that belong to the world.” The Signs of the Times, May 29, 1884.


1 In what areas does God expect us to be on higher ground than were the Seventh-day Adventist pioneers?

2 Where are we experiencing a lack of faith, and how can we overcome this?

3 What are the keys to successful character building?

4 Where should our focus be, and why are we so easily distracted from this priority?

5 Why are we to take courage, even when facing death, dungeons, or banishment?

© 2005 Reformation Herald Publishing Association, Roanoke, Virginia. Reprinted by permission.

Bible Study Guides – After the Scriptures Were Penned

December 11, 2011 – December 17, 2011

Key Text

“Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints.” Jude 3.

Study Help: Early Writings, 222–226; Maranatha, 15–17.


“The Waldenses, John Wycliffe, Huss and Jerome, Martin Luther and Zwingli, Cranmer, Latimer, and Knox, the Huguenots, John and Charles Wesley, and a host of others brought to the foundation material that will endure throughout eternity.” The Acts of the Apostles, 598.


  • What is the main key to victory and genuineness in the Christian life? Matthew 4:4.

Note: “This word [of God] is the bread of heaven, and those who read and study it, making its truths a part of the life, will be given power from above.” The Review and Herald, March 24, 1904.

  • How important is Scripture to the Christian faith? Acts 20:32; II Timothy 3:16, 17.

Note: “Spiritual life must be sustained by communion with Christ through His Word. The mind must dwell upon it, the heart must be filled with it. The Word of God laid up in the heart and sacredly cherished and obeyed, through the power of the grace of Christ can make man right, and keep him right; but every human influence, every earthly invention, is powerless to give strength and wisdom to man. It cannot restrain passion, or correct deformity of character. Unless the truth of God controls the heart, the conscience will be warped.” Selected Messages, Book 2,124.


  • In the early centuries after the Scriptures were penned, what happened to the true believers in Bible religion, as symbolized by a pure woman? Revelation 12:12–14.

Note: “The faith which for centuries was held and taught by the Waldensian Christians was in marked contrast to the false doctrines put forth from Rome. Their religious belief was founded upon the written word of God, the true system of Christianity. But those humble peasants, in their obscure retreats, shut away from the world, and bound to daily toil among their flocks and their vineyards, had not by themselves arrived at the truth in opposition to the dogmas and heresies of the apostate church. Theirs was not a faith newly received. Their religious belief was their inheritance from their fathers. They contended for the faith of the apostolic church—‘the faith which was once delivered unto the saints.’ Jude 3. ‘The church in the wilderness,’ and not the proud hierarchy enthroned in the world’s great capital, was the true church of Christ, the guardian of the treasures of truth which God has committed to His people to be given to the world. …

“The Waldenses were among the first of the peoples of Europe to obtain a translation of the Holy Scriptures. Hundreds of years before the Reformation they possessed the Bible in manuscript in their native tongue. They had the truth unadulterated, and this rendered them the special objects of hatred and persecution.” The Great Controversy, 64, 65.

  • What was one of the key doctrines which these persecuted saints upheld? Luke 6:5.

Note: “Among the leading causes that had led to the separation of the true church from Rome was the hatred of the latter toward the Bible Sabbath. As foretold by prophecy, the papal power cast down the truth to the ground. The law of God was trampled in the dust, while the traditions and customs of men were exalted. The churches that were under the rule of the papacy were early compelled to honor the Sunday as a holy day.” The Great Controversy, 65.


  • What precious promises did Christ give to the faithful few living in the era of Thyatira during the Dark Ages? Revelation 2:24–28. How was the prophecy of the “morning star” fulfilled?

Note: “In the fourteenth century arose in England the ‘morning star of the Reformation.’ John Wycliffe was the herald of reform, not for England alone, but for all Christendom. The great protest against Rome which it was permitted him to utter was never to be silenced. That protest opened the struggle which was to result in the emancipation of individuals, of churches, and of nations.” The Great Controversy, 80.

  • What beautiful, yet hidden, gems of truth were rediscovered by men such as Martin Luther? I Timothy 2:5; Romans 1:16, 17.

Note: “Notwithstanding all the persecution of the saints, living witnesses for God’s truth were raised up on every hand. Angels of the Lord were doing the work committed to their trust. They were searching in the darkest places and selecting out of the darkness men who were honest in heart. These were all buried up in error, yet God called them, as He did Saul, to be chosen vessels to bear His truth and raise their voices against the sins of His professed people. Angels of God moved upon the hearts of Martin Luther, Melanchthon, and others in different places, and caused them to thirst for the living testimony of the Word of God. The enemy had come in like a flood, and the standard must be raised against him. Luther was the one chosen to breast the storm, stand up against the ire of a fallen church, and strengthen the few who were faithful to their holy profession. He was ever fearful of offending God. He tried through works to obtain His favor, but was not satisfied until a gleam of light from heaven drove the darkness from his mind and led him to trust, not in works, but in the merits of the blood of Christ. He could then come to God for himself, not through popes or confessors, but through Jesus Christ alone.

“Oh, how precious to Luther was this new and glorious light which had dawned upon his dark understanding and driven away his superstition! He prized it higher than the richest earthly treasure. The Word of God was new. Everything was changed. The book he had dreaded because he could not see beauty in it, was now life, eternal life, to him. It was his joy, his consolation, his blessed teacher.” Early Writings, 222, 223.


  • What did William Miller, a meticulous Bible student, begin to realize in the 1830s?

Note: “He [William Miller] was forced to the conclusion, from the study of Scripture alone, that the period allotted for the continuance of the earth in its present state was about to close.” The Great Controversy, 323.

  • Explain some of the important prophecies which came to light among the believers in the second-advent movement. Daniel 8:14; Revelation 1:7; 14:1–12.
  • Despite the great light entrusted and the urgency of the hour, why has Christ been disappointed in the church of this era? I Corinthians 14:8; Revelation 3:14–17.

Note: “We are in danger of giving the third angel’s message in so indefinite a manner that it does not impress the people. So many other interests are brought in that the very message which should be proclaimed with power becomes tame and voiceless.” Testimonies, vol. 6, 60.

  • Due to the lukewarm state of spirituality, what does Christ warn? Revelation 3:18, 19. Yet with the passing of time, has this problem become better—or worse? James 2:10–12.

Note: “Of those who boast of their light and yet fail to walk in it Christ says, ‘But I say unto you, It shall be more tolerable for Tyre and Sidon at the day of judgment, than for you. And thou, Capernaum [Seventh-day Adventists, who have had great light], which art exalted unto heaven [in point of privilege], shalt be brought down to hell: for if the mighty works, which have been done in thee had been done in Sodom, it would have remained until this day. But I say unto you, That it shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom in the day of judgment, than for thee’ [Matthew 11:22–24].” The Review and Herald, August 1, 1893. (All explanations in brackets were penned by the author.)


  • When the highest level of church-body leadership turns from its original course, to persecute and condemn to imprisonment and death those upholding the very principles on which the body was founded, what does that indicate? Matthew 23:37–39.

Note: “By the stoning of Stephen the Jews finally sealed their rejection of the gospel.” The Desire of Ages, 233.

“There are clear, decided distinctions to be restored and exemplified to the world in holding aloft the commandments of God and the faith of Jesus. The beauty of holiness is to appear in its native luster in contrast with the deformity and darkness of the disloyal, those who have revolted from the law of God. Thus we acknowledge God and recognize His law, the foundation of His government in heaven and throughout His earthly dominions. His authority should be kept distinct and plain before the world, and no laws are to be acknowledged that come in collision with the laws of Jehovah. If in defiance of God’s arrangements the world be allowed to influence our decisions or our actions, the purpose of God is defeated. However specious the pretext, if the church waver here, there is written against her in the books of heaven a betrayal of the most sacred trusts, and treachery to the kingdom of Christ.” Testimonies to Ministers and Gospel Workers, 16, 17.

  • Why does God endorse a separation in such circumstances? Psalm 11:3; Jude 3.

Note: “Satan has laid every measure possible that nothing shall come among us as a people to reprove and rebuke us, and exhort us to put away our errors. But there is a people who will bear the ark of God.” Testimonies to Ministers and Gospel Workers, 411.


1 How can I develop a greater appreciation for the Bible as the foundation of faith?

2 Why are we to be inspired by our church forefathers in the wilderness?

3 What made Martin Luther’s experience such a joyous one?

4 Why does God place all church organizations on probation?

5 When God calls forth a reformatory movement, what is its continual duty?

© 2005 Reformation Herald Publishing Association, Roanoke, Virginia. Reprinted by permission.

Bible Study Guides – Biblical Faith

December 4, 2011 – December 10, 2011

Key Text

“For we walk by faith, not by sight.” II Corinthians 5:7.

Study Help: Steps to Christ, 67–75; Testimonies, vol. 1, 303–310.


“Hold the faith with a firm hand, but be sure that you hold it in righteousness.” The Signs of the Times, December 13, 1899.


  • What should we all realize who accept Christ as our Saviour? Hebrews 12:1–3.

Note: “Oh, how often we yield to temptation because we do not keep our eye upon Jesus! Our faith is not continuous because, through self-indulgence, we sin, and then we cannot endure ‘as seeing Him who is invisible’ [Hebrews 11:27].” Testimonies, vol. 5, 652.

“Worldly attractions will be presented to draw your attention from the Lord Jesus; but laying aside every weight and the sin that so easily besets, press on toward the heavenly goal, showing to the world, to angels, and to men that the hope of seeing the face of God is worth all the effort and the sacrifice that the attainment of the hope demands.” The Review and Herald, December 29, 1910.

  • How can we grow in our Christian walk? I Peter 2:1–3.
  • What other means does God use to help us grow in Christ? Hebrews 12:4–12.

Note: “The Lord permits trials to come upon us in order that we may make earnest, heartfelt intercession. Trial brings us to God, and leads us to form a closer connection with Christ our Saviour. Trial forces us to do as the word of God directs.” The Signs of the Times, August 20, 1896.


  • What are we to realize when faced with difficulties? James 1:2–4; Psalm 84:11.

Note: “The Word does not say that we are to count it all joy when we fall under temptation, but when we fall into temptation. It is not necessary to fall under temptation, for temptation comes upon us for the trying of our faith. And the trying of our faith worketh patience, not fretfulness and murmuring. If we put our trust in Jesus, He will keep us at all times, and will be our strength and shield. We are to learn valuable lessons from our trials. …

“Many become the sport of the enemy, because when temptations comes, they do not rest in Jesus, but worry themselves out of His arms, and in perplexity lose all their faith and courage. They do not remember that Jesus has helped them out of difficulties in the past, that His grace is sufficient for the daily trials, and that He can help in the present trouble. We make failures in our little, daily difficulties, and allow them to irritate and vex us; we fall under them, and so make stumbling blocks for ourselves and others. But blessings of the greatest importance are to result from the patient endurance of these daily vexations; for we are to gain strength to bear greater difficulties. Satan will press upon us the most severe temptations, and we must learn to come to God in any and every emergency, as a child would come to its parents.” The Review and Herald, May 19, 1891.

  • What assurances does God offer as we exercise faith in Him? Ephesians 6:14–16.

Note: “We are not to be like the man who said, ‘I have prayed and prayed, but I do not receive.’ A companion said to him, ‘Let us pray together then, and claim the promise of God.’ So they bowed in prayer; but when they rose from their knees, the man said, ‘I don’t feel any different, and I didn’t expect I should.’ This is the way that many present themselves before God; they would be surprised if God should answer their prayers. They do not expect the Lord to answer their prayers, or think that the Lord will hear them, and their petitions are in vain; for they go away as they came.” The Review and Herald, May 19, 1891.


  • How does Christ depict His relationship with His children? John 15:1–5; I John 3:3.

Note: “[John 15:5, 4 quoted.] In this vine is all spiritual life. From Christ’s fullness alone can we obtain nourishment unto eternal life. The vine stock is unseen; but the branches—members of His body—are visible. The scion which before was leafless and apparently lifeless, becomes, when grafted into the vine, a partaker of its life and fatness. Fiber by fiber, and vein by vein, the graft adheres to the parent stock, till the life-giving sap flows to the adopted member, causing it to bud, and blossom, and bear fruit.

“The scion becomes a part of the living vine by forming a perfect union with it. Thus it is with the sinner. By repentance and faith, he becomes connected with Jesus Christ, and lives in him. This connection joins soul to soul—the finite with the infinite. But, contrary to nature, the branch which has been united with the true vine brings forth, not fruit of its own kind, but the fruit of the vine of which it has become a part. The Spirit of Christ, flowing into the hearts of all who are indeed united with Him, makes them partakers of the divine nature. They become pure, even as He is pure.” The Review and Herald, September 20, 1881.

“The life-giving power of the Holy Spirit, proceeding from the Saviour, pervades the soul, renews the motives and affections, and brings even the thoughts into obedience to the will of God, enabling the receiver to bear the precious fruit of holy deeds. …

“If the follower of Christ would grow up ‘unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ’ (Ephesians 4:13), he must eat of the bread of life and drink of the water of salvation. He must watch and pray and work, in all things giving heed to the instructions of God in His word.” The Acts of the Apostles, 284, 285.

  • What is one of the wonderful results of abiding in Christ? II Corinthians 1:3, 4.

Note: “Christ is represented by the vine that imparts the nourishment, the vitality, the life, the spirit, the power, that the branch can bear fruit, and then when affliction and disappointment come, you are to show altogether a different character of fruit than the world. There is the evidence that you are connected with Jesus Christ, and that there is a power that sustains you in all your afflictions and disappointments and trials; and this power and this grace sweetens every affliction.” Reflecting Christ, 355.


  • What are we to add to our faith, and what fruit will be shown? II Peter 1:3–9; Galatians 5:22, 23.

Note: “The soul that loves God, rises above the fog of doubt; he gains a bright, broad, deep, living experience, and becomes meek and Christlike. His soul is committed to God, hid with Christ in God. He will be able to stand the test of neglect, of abuse and contempt, because his Saviour has suffered all this. He will not become fretful and discouraged when difficulties press him, because Jesus did not fail or become discouraged. Every true Christian will be strong, not in the strength and merit of his good works, but in the righteousness of Christ, which through faith is imputed unto him. It is a great thing to be meek and lowly in heart, to be pure and undefiled, as was the Prince of heaven when He walked among men.” The Review and Herald, December 3, 1889.

  • If our character is not becoming Christlike as it should be, what is the basic problem? II Peter 1:10, 11; Hebrews 3:12. If we find ourselves in this predicament, what should be the cry of our heart? Mark 9:24.

Note: “When the tempests of temptation gather, and the fierce lightnings flash, and the waves sweep over us, we battle with the storm alone, forgetting that there is One who can help us. We trust to our own strength till our hope is lost, and we are ready to perish. Then we remember Jesus, and if we call upon Him to save us, we shall not cry in vain. Though He sorrowfully reproves our unbelief and self-confidence, He never fails to give us the help we need.” The Desire of Ages, 336.

“It is faith that connects us with heaven, and brings us strength for coping with the powers of darkness. In Christ, God has provided means for subduing every sinful trait, and resisting every temptation, however strong. But many feel that they lack faith, and therefore they remain away from Christ. Let these souls, in their helpless unworthiness, cast themselves upon the mercy of their compassionate Saviour. Look not to self, but to Christ. He who healed the sick and cast out demons when He walked among men is the same mighty Redeemer today. Faith comes by the word of God. Then grasp His promise, ‘Him that cometh to Me I will in no wise cast out.’ John 6:37. Cast yourself at His feet with the cry, ‘Lord, I believe; help Thou mine unbelief’ [Mark 9:24]. You can never perish while you do this—never.” Ibid., 429 (author’s italics).


  • Why is it that a proud person can never be truly faithful? Habakkuk 2:4.

Note: “Advancement in Christian experience is characterized by increasing humility, as the result of increasing knowledge. Everyone who is united to Christ will depart from all iniquity. … When Christ is cherished in the heart, His likeness will be revealed in the life. Humility will reign where pride was once predominant. Submission, meekness, patience, will soften down the rugged features of a naturally perverse, impetuous disposition. Love to Jesus will be manifested in love to His people. It is not fitful, not spasmodic, but calm and deep and strong. The life of the Christian will be divested of all pretense, free from all affectation, artifice, and falsehood. It is earnest, true, sublime. Christ speaks in every word. He is seen in every deed. The life is radiant with the light of an indwelling Saviour. In converse with God and in happy contemplation of heavenly things the soul is preparing for heaven and laboring to gather other souls into the fold of Christ. Our Saviour is able and willing to do for us more than we can ask or even think.” Testimonies, vol. 5, 49, 50.

  • How can we follow the Lord even when circumstances point against us? II Corinthians 4:17, 18; 5:7.

Note: “Faith looks beyond the difficulties, and lays hold of the unseen, even Omnipotence, therefore it cannot be baffled. Faith is the clasping of the hand of Christ in every emergency.” The Faith I Live By, 100.


1 What may be clouding my spiritual eyesight as I seek to look to Jesus?

2 How can I improve in my exercise of faith during trials and difficulties?

3 How can I promote the life-giving sap to flow more freely from Christ to me?

4 The standard of Christian virtue is high—yet, how are we encouraged along the way?

5 What occurs in the soul who keeps in close touch with God at the foot of the cross?

© 2005 Reformation Herald Publishing Association, Roanoke, Virginia. Reprinted by permission.

Bible Study Guides – Paul

November 27, 2011 – December 3, 2011

Faith of Our Fathers

Key Text

“I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ, and be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith.” Philippians 3:8, 9.

Study Help: The Acts of the Apostles, 123–130; Testimonies, vol. 4, 371–380.


“A more hearty, persevering, energetic disciple of Jesus Christ than was Paul, has never been upon the earth.” The Review and Herald, September 11, 1888.


  • Although Paul does not include his own name in the list of heroes of faith, what was the background of this author of the book of Hebrews? Philippians 3:4–6.

Note: “Paul had faith before his conversion; but it was not a correct faith. His self-righteousness strengthened his faith that he was doing God’s service in rejecting Christ, and he enjoyed a restful satisfaction. False faith as well as true faith will give peacefulness for a time. Paul verily thought that he was doing God’s service when he was persecuting the followers of Christ and putting them to death. He was sincere in his belief; but sincerity will not make error truth, nor truth error.” The Review and Herald, January 5, 1886.

  • What comfort comes to all who surrender to Jesus, as Paul did? Acts 9:1–6, 17, 18.

Note: “You also may have done wrong, thinking you were perfectly right; but when time reveals your error, then it is your duty to humble the heart, and confess your sin. Fall on the Rock and be broken; then Jesus can give you a new heart, a new spirit.” The Review and Herald, December 16, 1890.


  • What was Paul’s first step immediately after his baptism? Galatians 1:15–19.

Note: “Paul’s life was in peril, and he received a commission from God to leave Damascus for a time. He went into Arabia; and there, in comparative solitude, he had ample opportunity for communion with God, and for contemplation. He wished to be alone with God, to search his own heart, to deepen his repentance, and to prepare himself by prayer and study to engage in a work which appeared to him too great and too important for him to undertake. He was an apostle, not chosen of men, but chosen of God, and his work was plainly stated to be among the Gentiles.

“While in Arabia he did not communicate with the apostles; he sought God earnestly with all his heart, determining not to rest till he knew for a certainty that his repentance was accepted, and his great sin pardoned. He would not give up the conflict until he had the assurance that Jesus would be with him in his coming ministry. He was ever to carry about with him in the body the marks of Christ’s glory, in his eyes, which had been blinded by the heavenly light, and he desired also to bear with him constantly the assurance of Christ’s sustaining grace. Paul came in close connection with Heaven, and Jesus communed with him.” Sketches from the Life of Paul, 33, 34.

  • What was Paul later to declare about the residual problem with his eyes? II Corinthians 12:7–10.
  • How can we be inspired by Paul’s choice? Philippians 3:7–11; Jeremiah 9:23, 24.

Note: “Paul suffered much. He was persecuted from city to city, in perils oft, in prison, in scourging, in bonds, in fastings, in wearinesses and painful watchings, but he looked beyond the sufferings of the present time to glory beyond, and said: ‘I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us’ [Romans 8:18]. This is what God would have His people do. He would have us reckon and consider the rich reward of the eternal world, that we may appreciate the privileges that are brought within our reach through the plan of salvation.” The Signs of the Times, November 18, 1889.


  • How can we summarize Paul’s aim? I Corinthians 9:24–27; Philippians 3:12–14.

Note: “He [Paul] had one aim before him, and that was, that from his lips should go forth the tidings of redemption to perishing souls, that they might be brought into acquaintance with the Redeemer of the world. His whole soul was wrapped up in Jesus, and in the light of truth received from the Source of all light. This light must be carefully cherished.” The Review and Herald, September 11, 1888.

“In all the busy activities of his life, Paul never lost sight of one great purpose—to press toward the prize of his high calling. One aim he kept steadfastly before him—to be faithful to the One who at the gate of Damascus had revealed Himself to him. From this aim nothing had power to turn him aside. To exalt the cross of Calvary—this was the all-absorbing motive that inspired his words and acts.

“The great purpose that constrained Paul to press forward in the face of hardship and difficulty should lead every Christian worker to consecrate himself wholly to God’s service. Worldly attractions will be presented to draw his attentions from the Saviour, but he is to press on toward the goal, showing to the world, to angels, and to men that the hope of seeing the face of God is worth all the effort and sacrifice that the attainment of this hope demands.” The Acts of the Apostles, 483, 484.

  • What should we consider in view of the shortness of time before us? Luke 12:27–37.

Note: “Paul counted all things but loss that he might win Christ. But when the Saviour calls for our possessions and our service, there are many who see they cannot obey God and carry their earthly treasures with them, and they decide to stay by their treasures. Jesus left all His glory, and became poor, that we through His poverty might be made rich. But how few of His professed followers appreciate His great sacrifice! How few are willing to follow His example! How can those who expect to stand around Christ’s throne, and to be clothed with his righteousness, distrust God, and fear that He will leave them to come to want? Where is their faith? Our heavenly Father feeds the ravens, and will He not much more feed us?” The Review and Herald, March 15, 1887.


  • What kind of life did the apostle Paul lead? II Corinthians 11:9.

Note: “Among the believers in Christ there was no one apostle who was exalted as was Paul by the revelation of the Saviour in his conversion. And Paul labored with his hands as a tentmaker. In the midst of his zeal in persecuting the Christians, Paul had been arrested by a voice and a great light from heaven. During his ministerial labors he had several visions, of which he spoke little. He saw and heard many things not lawful for a man to utter. That which was given him as a special revelation from God was not at all times dwelt upon when he spoke to the people. But the impression was ever with him, enabling him to give a correct representation of the Christian life and character. The impression made upon his mind by the revelation of Christ never lost its force. It influenced his estimation and delineation of Christian character.

“The history of the apostle Paul is a constant testimony that manual labor cannot be degrading, that it is not inconsistent with true elevation of character. Paul worked day and night to avoid being a burden to his brethren, and at times he supported his fellow workers, he himself suffering from hunger in order to relieve the necessities of others. His toil-worn hands, as he presented them before the people, bore testimony that he was not chargeable to any man for his support. They detracted nothing, he deemed, from the force of his pathetic appeals, sensible, intelligent, and eloquent beyond those of any other man who had acted a part in the Christian ministry.” The Youth’s Instructor, January 31, 1901.

  • What does Paul teach us about true Christian ministry? II Corinthians 11:22–28.

Note: “We need men in these last days who are ever awake. Minutemen are wanted who are sincere in their love for the truth and willing to labor at a sacrifice if they can advance the cause of God and save precious souls. Men are wanted in this work who will not murmur or complain at hardships or trials, knowing that this is a part of the legacy that Jesus has left them. They should be willing to go without the camp and suffer reproach and bear burdens as good soldiers of Christ. They will bear the cross of Christ without complaint, without murmuring or fretfulness, and will be patient in tribulation.” Testimonies, vol. 3, 423.


  • Why should we be inspired by Paul’s level of consecration? Philippians 4:11–13.

Note: “Let the great purpose that constrained Paul to press forward in the face of hardship and difficulty lead you to consecrate yourselves wholly to God’s service.” The Review and Herald, December 29, 1910.

  • Foreseeing his soon martyrdom, what did Paul declare? II Timothy 1:11–13; 4:6–8.

Note: “The apostle [Paul] had carefully guarded himself, that he should not betray any murmuring, or make any appeal to his own sympathies. But, for the benefit of those who should follow Christ, he was determined to leave an example worthy of imitation. … He desired that Timothy should heartily believe, and carefully meditate upon the sufferings, the crucifixion, and the resurrection, of Christ, and find in the mission of Jesus sufficient support under all trials in the Christian life, that he might be able to endure all for Christ’s sake. For if the Master of the house had to suffer trial and persecution, shall not they of his household?” The Review and Herald, September 11, 1888.


1 Whom do I know that may yet be changed as Paul was on the road to Damascus?

2 In seeking to be a soul winner, have I yet undergone the “Arabia retreat” of which Paul recognized the need?

3 What things may be now distracting me from the noblest aim I should have?

4 Why should I be thankful for manual labor, even if I would prefer to do something else?

5 In what aspects of my life do I need greater dedication to God’s service?

© 2005 Reformation Herald Publishing Association, Roanoke, Virginia. Reprinted by permission.

Recipe – Roasted Root Vegetable Medley

8 to 12 slender carrots, peeled and trimmed 1 or 2 large beets, peeled and cut into thick wedges
8 to 12 baby turnips, peeled 1 whole head garlic, separated into cloves, unpeeled
6 to 8 fingerling potatoes, scrubbed and cut lengthwise in halves 2 or 3 sprigs fresh rosemary, sage or thyme
1 or 2 large parsnips, peeled, trimmed, and cut diagonally into 1-inch thick slices Salt
1 or 2 medium onions, trimmed, peeled and halved, each half cut into quarters Extra-virgin olive oil
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Put all the vegetables and the herb sprigs in a large baking dish. Season well with salt, drizzle generously with olive oil, and toss them with your hands to coat them evenly. Put the baking dish in the preheated oven and cook, stirring the vegetables occasionally, until they are tender and golden brown, about 45 minutes. If desired may substitute or add other root vegetables such as kohlrabi or celery root.  

Food – Back to your Roots

“God has furnished man with abundant means for the gratification of an unperverted appetite. He has spread before him the products of the earth—a bountiful variety of food that is palatable to the taste and nutritious to the system. Of these our benevolent heavenly Father says we may freely eat. … They impart nourishment to the body and give a power of endurance and a vigor of intellect that are not produced by a stimulating diet.” Child Guidance, 380.

As fall’s harvest fades from memory and spring’s bounty is waiting for warmer temperatures, what better time than now to dig up delicious possibilities of root vegetables. Insulated from the elements and nurtured by the soil’s nutrients, these underground wonders develop better flavor when it’s chilly and damp out—the cool temperatures convert root vegetables’ starches to sugar and make them sweeter.

Carrots, turnips, and potatoes may be the mainstay of most root vegetable recipes, but there’s a lot to be gained by trying some of their knobby, nubbly cousins, found alongside them in grocery store cases and farmers’ market bins.

Beets – Raw or roasted, their earthy, sweet flavor far outshines the canned variety. Try them in: Salads

Burdock – These long, thin Asian favorites stay crisp after cooking for a texture that’s a lot like water chestnuts. Try them in: Salads and stir-fries

Celery Root – Once peeled, the large knob reveals a creamy white flesh that tastes like a milder, sweeter version of the stalks. Try them in: Grated slaws and salads, roasted vegetable medleys, soups, and mashed potatoes.

Daikon Radishes – These pale white Asian roots taste a lot like their little red cousin, though they can sometimes be spicier. Try them in: salads and stir-fries

Jerusalem Artichokes or Sunchokes – The sweet, artichoke flavor of these veggies from the sunflower family gives them their name. Try them in: Roasted vegetable medleys and stir-fries

Jicama – It looks like a large, round potato, but jicama’s crisp crunch tastes more like cucumber. Try them in: Salads and tacos, or cut into sticks for a snack

Parsnips – Their delicate taste, a cross between carrots and parsley, makes these veggies a cold-weather favorite. Try them in: Soups, roasted vegetable medleys, and mashed potatoes

Rutabagas – With a milder, sweeter flavor and a creamier texture than turnips, rutabagas are a gardener’s favorite because they’re so easy to grow. Try them in: Soups, roasted vegetable medleys, and mashed potatoes

Root vegetables provide an abundance of savory recipe options between seasons. Unearth the secrets to cooking with lesser-known roots and keep your meals exciting all year-round!

Adapted from Vegetarian Times, March 2009.

Inspiration – The Gospel Invitation

Then said He unto him, A certain man made a great supper, and bade many; and sent his servant at supper time to say to them that were bidden, Come; for all things are now ready. And they all with one consent began to make excuse. The first said unto him, I have bought a piece of ground, and I must needs go and see it; I pray thee have me excused. And another said, I have bought five yoke of oxen, I go to prove them; I pray thee have me excused. And another said, I have married a wife, and therefore I cannot come. So that servant came, and showed his lord these things. Then the master of the house being angry said to his servant, Go out quickly into the streets and lanes of the city, and bring in hither the poor, and the maimed, and the halt, and the blind. And the servant said, Lord, it is done as thou hast commanded, and yet there is room. And the Lord said unto the servant, Go out into the highways and hedges, and compel them to come in, that my house may be filled. For I say unto you, That none of those men which were bidden shall taste of my supper.” Luke 14:16–24.

In this parable there are thoughts of the greatest importance. Christ’s words were simple; His language was plain; but truths were uttered which involved eternal interests.

There is a deep earnestness in the invitation, “Come; for all things are now ready.” How could those bidden make excuses of so trivial a character, and risk losing eternal life? And yet in every age of the world men are fulfilling this parable in refusing the invitation to the gospel feast. One urges as an excuse his temporal concerns; his property demands his attention. Another is hindered by the claims of society. But none of these excuses count with God. The refusal decides the eternal destiny of the soul; for the words of Christ are, “None of those men that were bidden shall taste of my supper.”

Can anyone consider the condescension of God in preparing the gospel feast, and its great cost, and treat the invitation slightingly? No man, nor even the highest angel, can estimate the great cost; it is known only to the Father and the Son. The love of God for sinful man is beyond computation. It is the wonder of all heaven, but none can comprehend it. How could their loved Commander in the heavenly courts be permitted to endure such self-denial, such great sacrifice, to bring to man the gospel privileges? And yet with many these privileges are not considered of as much value as the approbation of their neighbours.

Had not God manifested His great love by providing the gospel feast at an expense that cannot be computed, and then bidden His guests, the sin of refusal would not involve eternal consequences. But those who frame these excuses will never realize the greatness and terribleness of the consequences until they shall personally see the saints of God welcomed into the heaven of bliss, and they themselves left outside. What would they not then give to be received into the mansions Jesus has gone to prepare for His guests?

The preparations are as abundant as if everyone bidden would certainly accept the invitation. God Himself, through the atonement of Christ, has made unlimited provision for all who will come. The Jewish nation, to whom the invitation was first given, were highly favoured and exalted. And when they rejected the call, the Lord declared that none of those who were bidden, and refused the invitation, should taste His supper. Can the human mind really take in this great thought, that to refuse the heavenly solicitation is to be refused of Christ, cast off forever?

When the invitation was rejected, the messengers were sent to call in people whom the Jews despised and regarded as a curse in the earth—the poor, the maimed, the halt, and the blind. The call was to go to the high-ways and by-ways, and to reach the poor and outcast. These are not so filled with self-righteousness that they cannot appreciate the divine favour.

Christ is the light of the world, an ever-present and all-sufficient Saviour. Those who receive His grace are not to look upon themselves as a favoured few, as the only ones who shall be the recipients of His salvation. At the first the light was permitted to shine in clear, distinct rays upon the Jewish nation, giving them the privilege of co-operating with God in lighting the world with His glory. But they did not understand that divine goodness embraces the world; that it was the design of God that every human being should be included in those bidden. Now in Christ every wall of exclusiveness has been broken down, with every caste, every grade, high or low, rich or poor. “Whoso heareth” may partake of the divine blessings designed for the world in the gospel feast, and is commissioned to repeat the invitation, “Come.”

The Bible Echo, October 28, 1895.

Thoughts to Ponder

It is easier many times for the Christian to turn defeat into victory than it is to go from victory to victory. When defeated, the true child of God will humble his heart and seek God as he has never before sought Him, and thereby get so much nearer to the Master that he will gain greater triumph in the future. He has learned his own weakness and God’s mercy and love, and by the latter he wins. But victory is often but the prelude to defeat; not that it need be so. But because the soul has become over-confident, it neglects to realize that all victory is of God, and thus leaves open the heart for the enemy. If there is need of humility and prayer, it is after some great success has crowned one’s efforts.

Extreme sensitiveness is overwhelming selfishness coupled with great weakness. Sensitiveness, we mean, is always imagining personal slights, neglects, or insults. Surmise is ever fruitful with such. “Why, Brother A did not speak to me this morning;” “Brother B just nodded when I spoke to him last night”; “Sister C has been talking about me, for I saw her talking with Sister D and they looked over toward me and laughed; they must have been laughing at me”; “I am not appreciated and trusted.” So it goes, and the poor soul is constantly more or less miserable, brooding over a supposed something that some one thought or someone said, that someone never thought or never said or never had a thought of saying or thinking.

If the sensitive individual did not think so much of self, he would not care what folks said, without imagining that they did say what they didn’t say. If they were strong in character, had strong faith in God, or were absorbed in their legitimate work, they would have no time for surmises. If they did their own legitimate work first and sought some greater thing later, they would find it a blessing of strength. Legitimate work close at hand, even though made up of common, menial tasks, is work for God if done aright. Let the sensitive get a view of his own sinful heart and his own mental incapacity; let him get a, love for others, a disposition to do the work which God would be pleased with, faith that God will do just what is right whatever man may do or say, and the sensitiveness will depart and strength will come. After all, what does it matter what men may say if we are doing what is right? “If God be for us, who can be against us” [Romans 8:31]?

The Signs of the Times, vol. 5, No. 35, September 9, 1889.

A Call to Prayer – Unity

“If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.” II Chronicles 7:14.

“Then I heard one saint speaking, and another saint said unto that certain saint which spake, How long shall be the vision concerning the daily sacrifice, and the transgression of desolation, to give both the sanctuary and the host to be trodden under foot?” Daniel 8:13.

Time is running out, and the last message of warning must go to the sin-sick world.

“As the time comes for it to be given with greatest power, the Lord will work through humble instruments, leading the minds of those who consecrate themselves to His service. The laborers will be qualified rather by the unction of His Spirit than by the training of literary institutions. Men of faith and prayer will be constrained to go forth with holy zeal, declaring the words which God gives them.” The Great Controversy, 606.

This, we are told, is going to be a global loud cry, a global outpouring of God’s Spirit, but where are we going to bring those who believe? Are God’s people ready to receive this influx of people?

When the early rain fell at Pentecost, the believers “were all with one accord” (Acts 2:1). Is that the condition that we find ourselves in today with so many diverse views on what we should eat, how we should dress, and even what we believe? We have a dilemma, and if we wait until we all agree on every point, we will be here forever. Satan just loves to keep God’s people divided!

Paul tells us that by “being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.” Romans 5:1. Because we have been justified, we have peace—oneness, unity.

“Here is the patience of the saints: here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus.” Revelation 14:12. There is no justification in the law (Romans 3:19), but we are “justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus.” Romans 3:24.

To be justified means to be accepted as if we had never sinned. The third angel’s message is a message of justification by faith. Ellen White said, “Several have written to me, inquiring if the message of justification by faith is the third angel’s message, and I have answered, ‘It is the third angel’s message in verity.’ ” Evangelism, 190.

We are unprepared and cannot give the third angel’s message with power unless we are living it ourselves. This means keeping the law in the strength of Jesus Christ Who, through His ministry in the Most Holy Place, makes atonement for our confessed sins. Jesus simplified it further—“love one another” He said, “as I have loved you, that ye also love one another” (John 13:34). But we have so much division amongst us! There are churches where some people refuse to talk to others for various reasons.

The devil knows that when this message of justification by faith is properly understood, his power will be broken.

“What is justification by faith? It is the work of God in laying the glory of man in the dust, and doing for man that which it is not in his power to do for himself. When men see their own nothingness, they are prepared to be clothed with the righteousness of Christ.” The Faith I Live By, 111.

To wear the robe of Christ’s righteousness, we must do away with all dissention. People can unite on their own nothingness and wretchedness and rejoice in the fact that Jesus sees us as if we had never sinned.

Jesus said, “A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.” John 13:34, 35.

At the cross, the ungodly were treated as if they had never sinned. Jesus offered Himself so we could accept His righteousness. If He treats us as if we had never sinned, can we accept our brethren as if they had not done us any harm?

Too often we have a reason for our actions and continually justify ourselves. Jesus gave no reason to sin. If sin could have a reason, then it could be excused. Jesus gave us a perfect example; when He was reviled and treated like a common criminal, there was no retaliation found in Him.

This is the key to victory over sin. Justification by faith takes away all personal justification. Those who have truly experienced this will have forgiveness and love toward others—pray together, unite!

Let us corporately pray for this condition, to be of one accord. This is the condition of the people on which the latter rain will fall. “Unless we are daily advancing in the exemplification of the active Christian virtues, we shall not recognize the manifestations of the Holy Spirit in the latter rain. It may be falling on hearts all around us, but we shall not discern or receive it.” Testimonies to Ministers and Gospel Workers, 507.

We all have special burdens on our hearts, most of which are common to many people. Let us share one another’s burdens and pray together for those things that are applicable to a whole group of people.

Please contact us with your requests by writing or emailing to:, so we can pray together to hasten the coming of Jesus and help others to be ready for that day.