Bible Study Guides – Christ, the Perfect Communicator

October 20, 2013 – October 26, 2013

Key Text

“The Lord God hath given me the tongue of the learned, that I should know how to speak a word in season to him that is weary: he wakeneth morning by morning, he wakeneth mine ear to hear as the learned.” Isaiah 50:4.

Study Help: The Desire of Ages, 183–195; Gospel Workers, 121–123.


“His [Christ’s] calm, earnest, musical voice fell like balm on the wounded spirit.” The Review and Herald, March 5, 1901.


  • What can we learn from the acknowledgment of the chief priest’s officers with respect to Christ’s manner of speaking? John 7:46.

Note: “His [Christ’s] tender compassion fell with a touch of healing upon weary and troubled hearts. Even amid the turbulence of angry enemies He was surrounded with an atmosphere of peace. The beauty of His countenance, the loveliness of His character, above all, the love expressed in look and tone, drew to Him all who were not hardened in unbelief. Had it not been for the sweet, sympathetic spirit that shone out in every look and word, He would not have attracted the large congregations that He did.” The Desire of Ages, 254.

  • How can we reflect the divine method of speaking? II Corinthians 3:18; Hebrews 12:2.

Note: “Jesus is our example. His voice was musical, and was never raised in high, strained notes while He was speaking to the people. He did not speak so rapidly that His words were crowded one upon another in such a way that it made it difficult to understand Him. He distinctly enunciated every word, and those who heard His voice bore the testimony that ‘never man spake like this man’ (John 7:46).” The Review and Herald, March 5, 1895.


  • While Christ had a melodious, loving, and earnest voice, how did He exhort and present cutting truths when needed? Matthew 7:28, 29; Luke 4:32; John 2:15, 16.

Note: “In the work of soul-winning, great tact and wisdom are needed. The Saviour never suppressed the truth, but He uttered it always in love. In His intercourse with others, He exercised the greatest tact, and He was always kind and thoughtful. He was never rude, never needlessly spoke a severe word, never gave unnecessary pain to a sensitive soul. He did not censure human weakness. He fearlessly denounced hypocrisy, unbelief, and iniquity, but tears were in His voice as He uttered His scathing rebukes. He never made truth cruel, but ever manifested a deep tenderness for humanity. Every soul was precious in His sight. He bore Himself with divine dignity; yet He bowed with the tenderest compassion and regard to every member of the family of God. He saw in all, souls whom it was His mission to save.” Gospel Workers, 117.

  • Why was Christ successful in motivating a change in people’s lives? John 13:15.

Note: “What He [Christ] taught, He lived. ‘I have given you an example,’ He said to His disciples; ‘that ye should do as I have done.’ ‘I have kept My Father’s commandments’ (John 13:15; 15:10). Thus in His life, Christ’s words had perfect illustration and support. And more than this; what He taught, He was. His words were the expression, not only of His own life experience, but of His own character. Not only did He teach the truth, but He was the truth. It was this that gave His teaching, power.” Education, 78, 79.

“Through the help that Christ can give, we shall be able to learn to bridle the tongue. Sorely as He was tried on the point of hasty and angry speech, He never once sinned with His lips. With patient calmness He met the sneers, the taunts, and the ridicule of His fellow workers at the carpenter’s bench. Instead of retorting angrily, He would begin to sing one of David’s beautiful psalms; and His companions, before realizing what they were doing, would unite with Him in the hymn. What a transformation would be wrought in this world if men and women today would follow Christ’s example in the use of words!” The Review and Herald, May 26, 1904.


  • What method did Christ use to break down prejudice and find access to the mind of the multitude? Matthew 13:34, 35.

Note: “He who has paid the infinite price to redeem men reads with unerring accuracy all the hidden workings of the human mind, and knows just how to deal with every soul. And in dealing with men, He manifests the same principles that are manifest in the natural world. The beneficent operations of nature are not accomplished by abrupt and startling interpositions; men are not permitted to take her work into their own hands. God works through the calm, regular operation of His appointed laws. So it is in spiritual things. Satan is constantly seeking to produce effects by rude and violent thrusts; but Jesus found access to minds by the pathway of their most familiar associations. He disturbed as little as possible their accustomed train of thought by abrupt actions or prescribed rules. He honored man with His confidence, and thus placed him on his honor. He introduced old truths in a new and precious light. Thus when only twelve years old, He astonished the doctors of the law by His questions in the temple.” Testimonies to Ministers and Gospel Workers, 189, 190.

  • How was Christ able to melt away the animosity of the Samaritans? John 4:4–26, 39–42.

Note: “Christ did not wait for congregations to assemble. Some of the grandest truths He uttered were spoken to individuals. Listen to His wonderful words to that one woman of Samaria. He was sitting by Jacob’s well as the woman came to draw water. To her surprise He asked a favor of her. ‘Give Me to drink’ (John 4:7), He said. He wanted a cool draught, and He wished also to open the way whereby He might give to her the water of life. …

“How much interest Christ manifested in this one woman! How earnest and eloquent were His words! They stirred the heart of the listener, and forgetting her errand to the well, she went into the city and said to her friends, ‘Come, see a man, which told me all things that ever I did: is not this the Christ’ (verse 29)?” Gospel Workers, 194, 195.


  • When considering how to deal with sin-sick souls and backslidden church members, what can we learn from Christ’s treatment of the accused woman in John 8:3–11?

Note: “As the dew and the still showers fall upon the withering plants, so let words fall gently when seeking to win men from error. God’s plan is first to reach the heart. We are to speak the truth in love, trusting in Him to give it power for the reforming of the life. The Holy Spirit will apply to the soul the word that is spoken in love.” The Ministry of Healing, 157.

“It is not Christ’s follower that, with averted eyes, turns from the erring, leaving them unhindered to pursue their downward course. Those who are forward in accusing others, and zealous in bringing them to justice, are often in their own lives more guilty than they. Men hate the sinner, while they love the sin. Christ hates the sin, but loves the sinner. This will be the spirit of all who follow Him. Christian love is slow to censure, quick to discern penitence, ready to forgive, to encourage, to set the wanderer in the path of holiness, and to stay his feet therein.” The Desire of Ages, 462.

  • Give some scriptural examples of how Christ reproved His disciples. Matthew 16:8; Luke 9:55; 24:25–27.

Note: “Jesus reproved His disciples, He warned and cautioned them; but John and Peter and their brethren did not leave Him. Notwithstanding the reproofs, they chose to be with Jesus. And the Saviour did not, because of their errors, withdraw from them. He takes men as they are, with all their faults and weaknesses, and trains them for His service, if they will be disciplined and taught by Him.” Education, 91.

“God desires your words to be life-giving. Not a word of irritation is to be spoken. However provoked you may feel, keep back every word that would stir up the evil in another heart.” The Voice in Speech and Song, 144, 145.

“There is often a great temptation to talk of things which do not profit the speaker or the hearer, but which bring evil and barrenness to both. Our probationary time is too brief to be spent in dwelling upon the shortcomings of others.” Testimonies, vol. 4, 135.


  • What was the secret of Christ’s perfect communication skills? Isaiah 50:4, 5.
  • How long did Christ persevere in His communion with God, and why? Luke 6:12.

Note: “From hours spent with God He [Christ] came forth morning by morning, to bring the light of heaven to men. Daily He received a fresh baptism of the Holy Spirit. In the early hours of the new day the Lord awakened Him from His slumbers, and His soul and His lips were anointed with grace, that He might impart to others. His words were given Him fresh from the heavenly courts, words that He might speak in season to the weary and oppressed.” Christ’s Object Lessons, 139.

“As a man He [Christ] supplicated the throne of God till His humanity was charged with a heavenly current that should connect humanity with divinity. Through continual communion He received life from God, that He might impart life to the world. His experience is to be ours.” The Desire of Ages, 363.

  • What results are to be reaped daily through devotional time spent with God? Isaiah 33:2.

Note: “Some are seen to come forth from their daily communion with God clothed with the meekness of Christ. Their words are not like a desolating hail, crushing everything before it; they come forth sweetly from their lips. They scatter seeds of love and kindness all along their path, and that all unconsciously, because Christ lives in their heart. Their influence is felt more than it is seen.” “Ellen G. White Comments,” The Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary, vol. 3, 1159.


1 How are we to make our voice resemble Christ’s voice more closely?

2 In what way will people be motivated to follow Christ?

3 How can you break down the walls of prejudice?

Copyright © 2007 Reformation Herald Publishing Association, 5240 Hollins Road, Roanoke, Virginia. Reprinted by permission.

Bible Study Guides – Influence Through Speech

October 13, 2013 – October 19, 2013

Key Text

“Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers.” Ephesians 4:29.

Study Help: Counsels to Parents, Teachers, and Students, 238, 239; The Voice in Speech and Song, 48–63.


“The most important results for good or evil are the consequence of our words and actions.” Testimonies, vol. 3, 542.


  • What clear evidence demonstrates who is controlling our life? Matthew 6:24; 12:35.

Note: “You cannot be too careful of what you say, for the words you utter show what power is controlling your mind and heart. If Christ rules in your heart, your words will reveal the purity, beauty, and fragrance of a character molded and fashioned by His will. But since his fall, Satan has been an accuser of the brethren, and you must be on guard lest you reveal the same spirit.” Mind, Character, and Personality, vol. 2, 579, 580.

  • What is the relationship between our thoughts, words, and character? Proverbs 23:7, first part; Matthew 12:34.

Note: “The words are an indication of that which is in the heart. ‘Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh’ (Matthew 12:34). But the words are more than an indication of character; they have power to react on the character. Men are influenced by their own words. Often under a momentary impulse, prompted by Satan, they give utterance to jealousy or evil surmising, expressing that which they do not really believe; but the expression reacts on the thoughts. They are deceived by their words, and come to believe that true which was spoken at Satan’s instigation. Having once expressed an opinion or decision, they are often too proud to retract it, and try to prove themselves in the right, until they come to believe that they are.” The Desire of Ages, 323.


  • What influence are we exerting upon others? I Peter 2:11, 12; 3:9.

Note: “Day by day we are sowing seeds for the future harvest. We cannot be too careful of the seed which we sow by our words. Often words are carelessly spoken and forgotten, but these words, for good or ill, will bring forth a harvest. Sow one unkind, harsh word, and this seed, finding soil in the minds of the hearers, will spring up to bear fruit after its kind. Sow one seed in loving, gentle, Christlike words, and it will bring you rich returns. Let us guard ourselves, lest we speak words that are not a blessing, but a curse. If we sow wheat we shall reap wheat; if we sow tares we shall reap tares; and the harvest, whether of wheat or of tares, will be sure and abundant.” Our High Calling, 294.

  • What is the strongest argument in favor of Christianity? Ephesians 4:29.

Note: “The life, the words, and the deportment are the most forcible argument, the most solemn appeal, to the careless, irreverent, and skeptical. Let the life and character be the strong argument for Christianity; then men will be compelled to take knowledge of you that you have been with Jesus and have learned of Him.” Counsels to Parents, Teachers, and Students, 478.

“The unstudied, unconscious influence of a holy life is the most convincing sermon that can be given in favor of Christianity. Argument, even when unanswerable, may provoke only opposition; but a godly example has a power that it is impossible wholly to resist.” Gospel Workers, 59.

  • What will determine the extent of our influence as we seek to give counsel or admonition? Ecclesiastes 9:17; Philippians 1:27, first part.

Note: “Words of love, tenderness, and charity sanctify our influence over others.” Our High Calling, 175.


  • What practical lesson can we learn by comparing the speech of Nabal with that of Abigail? I Samuel 25:2–11, 23–28.

Note: “With kind words she [Abigail] sought to soothe his [David’s] irritated feelings, and she pleaded with him in behalf of her husband. With nothing of ostentation or pride, but full of the wisdom and love of God, Abigail revealed the strength of her devotion to her household. …

“The piety of Abigail, like the fragrance of a flower, breathed out all unconsciously in face and word and action. The Spirit of the Son of God was abiding in her soul. Her speech, seasoned with grace, and full of kindness and peace, shed a heavenly influence. Better impulses came to David, and he trembled as he thought what might have been the consequences of his rash purpose. ‘Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God’ (Matthew 5:9). Would that there were many more like this woman of Israel, who would soothe the irritated feelings, prevent rash impulses, and quell great evils by words of calm and well-directed wisdom.” Patriarchs and Prophets, 666, 667.

  • When confronted by anger, how will a Christian be able to influence the conversation? Proverbs 15:1, first part.

Note: “A consecrated Christian life is ever shedding light and comfort and peace. It is characterized by purity, tact, simplicity, and usefulness. It is controlled by that unselfish love that sanctifies the influence. It is full of Christ, and leaves a track of light wherever its possessor may go. Abigail was a wise reprover and counselor. David’s passion died away under the power of her influence and reasoning. He was convinced that he had taken an unwise course and had lost control of his own spirit.

“With a humble heart he received the rebuke, in harmony with his own words, ‘Let the righteous smite me; it shall be a kindness: and let him reprove me; it shall be an excellent oil’ (Psalm 141:5). He gave thanks and blessings because she advised him righteously. There are many who, when they are reproved, think it praiseworthy if they receive the rebuke without becoming impatient; but how few take reproof with gratitude of heart and bless those who seek to save them from pursuing an evil course.” Patriarchs and Prophets, 667.


  • What type of conversation will be evident in those who, by divine grace, have learned to control their tongue? Psalm 37:30.

Note: “ ‘Who is a wise man and endued with knowledge among you? Let him shew out of a good conversation his works with meekness of wisdom’ (James 3:13). My brethren and sisters, how are you employing the gift of speech? Have you learned so to control the tongue that it shall ever obey the dictates of an enlightened conscience and holy affections? Is your conversation free from levity, pride and malice, deceit and impurity? Are you without guile before God? Words exert a telling power. Satan will, if possible, keep the tongue active in his service. Of ourselves we cannot control the unruly member. Divine grace is our only hope.

“Those who are eagerly studying how they may secure the pre-eminence should study rather how they may gain that wisdom which is ‘first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be entreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy’ (verse 17). I [Ellen White] have been shown that many ministers need to have these words imprinted on the tablets of the soul. He who has Christ formed within, the hope of glory, will ‘show out of a good conversation his works with meekness of wisdom.’ ” Testimonies, vol. 5, 175.

  • What habitual impression will help us to follow the dictates of an enlightened conscience as we speak? Psalm 33:13, 14; Job 34:21.

Note: “If you live upon the plan of addition, adding grace to grace, God will multiply unto you His grace. While you add, God multiplies. If you cherish a habitual impression that God sees and hears all that you do and say, and keeps a faithful record of all your words and actions, and that you must meet it all, then in all you do and say you will seek to follow the dictates of an enlightened and wakeful conscience. Your tongue will be used to the glory of God and will be a source of blessing to yourself and to others. But if you separate from God, as you have been doing, take heed lest your tongue shall prove a world of iniquity and bring upon you fearful condemnation; for souls will be lost through you.” Testimonies, vol. 4, 244.


  • How can we persuade others to accept the salvation offered by Christ? Isaiah 26:3.

Note: “The teaching of Christ was the expression of an inwrought conviction and experience, and those who learn of Him become teachers after the divine order. The word of God, spoken by one who is himself sanctified through it, has a life-giving power that makes it attractive to the hearers, and convicts them that it is a living reality. When one has received the truth in the love of it, he will make this manifest in the persuasion of his manner and the tones of his voice. He makes known that which he himself has heard, seen, and handled of the word of life, that others may have fellowship with him through the knowledge of Christ. His testimony, from lips touched with a live coal from off the altar, is truth to the receptive heart, and works sanctification upon the character.” The Desire of Ages, 142.

  • How is God’s standard of persuasive eloquence different from what one might expect? I Corinthians 13:1, 2.
  • What prerequisite is needed before we can have a reservoir of persuasion? Acts 24:16; Colossians 4:6.

Note: “The most persuasive eloquence is the word that is spoken in love and sympathy. Such words will bring light to confused minds and hope to the discouraged, brightening the prospect before them. The time in which we live calls for vital, sanctified energy; for earnestness, zeal, and the tenderest sympathy and love; for words that will not increase misery, but will inspire faith and hope. We are homeward bound, seeking a better country, even a heavenly.” The Review and Herald, February 16, 1897.


1 How does our daily speech influence our character?

2 What can we learn from Abigail’s talent of speech?

3 What are the prerequisites of persuasive speech?

Copyright © 2007 Reformation Herald Publishing Association, 5240 Hollins Road, Roanoke, Virginia. Reprinted by permission.

Bible Study Guides – Education of the Tongue

October 6, 2013 – October 12, 2013

Key Text

“The tongue of the just is as choice silver: the heart of the wicked is little worth.” Proverbs 10:20.

Study Help: Child Guidance, 481, 482; Fundamentals of Christian Education, 242–244.


“The chief requisite of language is that it be pure and kind and true—‘the outward expression of an inward grace.’ ” Education, 235.


  • Why should education of the tongue be one of the most important branches of study? Proverbs 18:21; James 3:2–8.

Note: “One of the finest and most elevating branches of education is that of knowing how to address members of the household, that the influence of the words spoken will be pure and incorruptible. The proper conversation of a Christian is that which will enable him to interchange ideas. Loud-voiced words, that help and bless no one, might better be changed for words of good, elevated, enlightened common sense. This line of work is the greatest missionary enterprise in which any Christian can engage. Those who use the organs of speech as the living machinery of God, become living stones in His temple, emitting light and knowledge.” The Voice in Speech and Song, 34.

  • Of the seven evils that God especially hates, how many are related to the tongue? Proverbs 6:16–19.

Note: “Haphazard words, hasty, common words, talking for the sake of talking, when silence would be better, is a sin. Those who are the most wordy exercise no wholesome influence upon the society in which they live and move. Bible religion is not to be boastfully paraded, but quietly practiced in good words and works.” The Voice in Speech and Song, 31.


  • Where is the best training ground for proper habits of speech, and why? Deuteronomy 11:18, 19.

Note: “It is the work of parents to train their children to proper habits of speech. The very best school for this culture is the home life. From the earliest years the children should be taught to speak respectfully and lovingly to their parents and to one another. They should be taught that only words of gentleness, truth, and purity must pass their lips.” Christ’s Object Lessons, 337, 338.

  • What twofold method is to be used by parents in teaching their children good speech habits? Philippians 2:14, 15; Titus 2:7, 8.

Note: “Let the parents themselves be daily learners in the school of Christ. Then by precept and example they can teach their children the use of ‘sound speech, that cannot be condemned’ (Titus 2:8). This is one of the greatest and most responsible of their duties.” Christ’s Object Lessons, 338.

“Fathers and mothers, you have a solemn work to do. The eternal salvation of your children depends upon your course of action. How will you successfully educate your children? Not by scolding, for it will do no good. Talk to your children as if you had confidence in their intelligence. Deal with them kindly, tenderly, lovingly. Tell them what God would have them do. Tell them that God would have them educated and trained to be laborers together with Him. When you act your part, you can trust the Lord to act His part.” The Review and Herald, February 17, 1910.

  • What is the basic textbook for speech training? John 5:39.

Note: “Our education in regard to the science of conversation will be in every way improved if we make the word of God our study.” Manuscript Releases, vol. 3, 360.


  • How does unsanctified speech affect the church, and how should it be handled? Proverbs 16:27, 28; 17:20; 22:10.

Note: “The hasty, reckless use of the faculty of speech lies at the foundation of nearly all the church troubles that exist. Evil-speaking should be dealt with as a misdemeanor that is subject to church trial and separation from church membership if persisted in; for the church cannot be set in order in any other way.” The Voice in Speech and Song, 31.

“Words of suspicion and distrust, like the thistle-down carried by the wind, are scattered far and wide, and can never be recalled. Un-Christlike speech lies at the foundation of nine tenths of all the difficulties that exist in the church. Satan’s agents are industriously trying to get professed Christians to speak unadvisedly. When they succeed, Satan exults, because God’s followers have hurt their influence. We have no time, in these solemn moments, to contend with one another. Those who give way to evil-thinking and evil-speaking do not realize how much time they cause others to lose. God’s servants have been called upon to settle difficulties between brother and brother, and time has been spent in this way that belonged to souls ready to perish—time that ought to have been devoted to the fulfilling of the gospel commission.” The Review and Herald, November 24, 1904.

“If they [the professed followers of Christ] could see the mischief wrought by their careless words, the repetition of vague reports, the unjust censures, there would be far less talking and more praying when Christians assemble together.” Ibid., October 19, 1886.

  • What type of speech should be utilized by parents and teachers in proper education? Ephesians 4:22–25.

Note: “The teacher whose soul is stayed upon Christ will speak and act like a Christian. Such a one will not be satisfied until the truth cleanses his life from every unessential thing. He will not be satisfied unless his mind is day by day molded by the holy influences of the Spirit of God. Then Christ can speak to the heart, and His voice, saying, ‘This is the way; walk ye in it’ (Isaiah 30:21), will be heard and obeyed.” The Review and Herald, September 3, 1908.


  • How can Christlike teachers influence all their students who have not had proper home training? Proverbs 25:15.

Note: “Show sympathy and tenderness in dealing with your pupils. Reveal the love of God. Let the words you speak be kind and encouraging. Then as you work for your students, what a transformation will be wrought in the characters of those who have not been properly trained in the home! The Lord can make even youthful teachers channels for the revealing of His grace, if they will consecrate themselves to Him.” Counsels to Parents, Teachers, and Students, 152.

  • How can parents and teachers deal with strong-willed children and youth? Proverbs 3:12.

Note: “Let the teacher bring peace and love and cheerfulness into his work. Let him not allow himself to become angry or provoked. The Lord is looking upon him with intense interest, to see if he is being molded by the divine Teacher. The child who loses his self-control is far more excusable than the teacher who allows himself to become angry and impatient. When a stern reproof is to be given, it may still be given in kindness. Let the teacher beware of making the child stubborn by speaking to him harshly. Let him follow every correction with drops of the oil of kindness. He should never forget that he is dealing with Christ in the person of one of Christ’s little ones.

“Let it be a settled maxim that in all school discipline, faithfulness and love are to reign. When a student is corrected in such a way that he is not made to feel that the teacher desires to humiliate him, love for the teacher springs up in his heart.” Counsels to Parents, Teachers, and Students, 212.

  • What will be the result of using Christ’s method in speech training? Ephesians 4:32.


  • How can young people reeducate their tongues for usefulness and glory to God? Proverbs 9:9, 10; 15:28, first part; Job 27:3, 4.

Note: “The workman for God should make earnest efforts to become a representative of Christ, discarding all uncomely gestures and uncouth speech. He should endeavor to use correct language. There is a large class who are careless in the way they speak, yet by careful, painstaking attention these may become representatives of the truth. Every day they should make advancement. They should not detract from their usefulness and influence by cherishing defects of manner, tone, or language. Common, cheap expressions should be replaced by sound, pure words.” Counsels to Parents, Teachers, and Students, 238.

  • What will be the result as young students make a decided change in their thinking, speaking, and acting? Philippians 4:8; Proverbs 17:27, 28.

Note: “The talent of speech is a very precious talent, and should in no case be perverted. The tongue is an unruly member, but it should not be so. That member which is improperly used in profane speech should be converted to utter praise to God. If all the students would make decided efforts to change their mode of thinking, of speaking, and of acting, in the family circle restraining all words that are not kind and courteous, and speaking with respect to all; if they would bear in mind that they are here preparing to become members of the family in heaven, what a reformatory influence would go forth from every home!” The Voice in Speech and Song, 46, 47.


1 How can we make our conversation more Christlike?

2 How can we instill in our children the habit of sanctified speech?

3 What is the relationship between speech and church problems?

4 What should characterize the speech of a consecrated teacher?

5 How can the youth develop mental discipline?

Copyright © 2007 Reformation Herald Publishing Association, 5240 Hollins Road, Roanoke, Virginia. Reprinted by permission.

Bible Study Guides – The Talent of Speech

September 29, 2013 – October 5, 2013

“In Their Mouth Was Found No Guile”

Key Text

“In their mouth [the 144,000] was found no guile: for they are without fault before the throne of God.” Revelation 14:5.

Study Help: Christ’s Object Lessons, 335–339; Testimonies, vol. 9, 30, 31.


“Let the purity of your language, the unselfishness of your service, the joyfulness of your demeanor, bear witness to the power of His [Christ’s] grace.” The Ministry of Healing, 156.


  • Why is speech one of the most important talents? Proverbs 10:11, first part.
  • Why has the talent of speech been given to us? Isaiah 43:10, first part; Psalm 71:15.

Note: “God has given us the gift of speech that we may recite to others His dealing with us, that His love and compassion may touch other hearts, and that praise may arise from other souls also to Him who has called them out of darkness into His marvelous light.” Counsels to Parents, Teachers, and Students, 243.

  • What relationship exists between speech and knowledge? Proverbs 10:31, 32; James 3:13.

Note: “We may have knowledge, but unless we know how to use the voice correctly, our work will be a failure. Unless we can clothe our ideas in appropriate language, of what avail is our education? Knowledge will be of little advantage to us unless we cultivate the talent of speech; but it is a wonderful power when combined with the ability to speak wise, helpful words, and to speak them in a way that will command attention.” Testimonies, vol. 6, 380.


  • How does our speech reveal aspects of our spiritual condition? Luke 6:45.

Note: “Where the heart is purified and refined, and made fit for the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, the tongue will be sanctified to the glory of God. When you hear young men jesting and joking, do not join in the merriment that dishonors Jesus Christ who died for them, but rather reprove them. Watch over one another for good. Pray for and with one another. You can surround your souls with an atmosphere that will be like breezes from the heavenly Eden. Open your heart to the Lord Jesus. … Our words index the state of our heart; and whether men talk much or little, their words express the character of their thoughts. A man’s character may be quite accurately estimated by the nature of his conversation. Sound, truthful words have the right ring in them. ‘The end of all things is at hand: be ye therefore sober, and watch unto prayer’ (I Peter 4:7).” The Youth’s Instructor, June 13, 1895.

“Satan puts into the mind thoughts which the Christian should never utter. The scornful retort, the bitter passionate utterance, the cruel, suspicious charge, are from him. How many words are spoken that do only harm to those who utter them and to those who hear! Hard words beat upon the heart, awaking to life its worst passions. Those who do evil with their tongues, who sow discord by selfish, jealous words, grieve the Holy Spirit; for they are working at cross-purposes with God.” The Review and Herald, May 12, 1910.

  • How can we exert a reformative influence through the right use of speech? Zephaniah 3:13.

Note: “Nothing so weakens a church as a wrong use of the talent of speech. We dishonor our Leader when our words are not such as should come from the lips of a Christian.” The Review and Herald, January 18, 1898.

“Oh, what a reformative influence would go forth if we as a people would value at its true worth the talent of speech and its influence upon human souls!” Medical Ministry, 213.


  • What is a simple, effective method of sharing Christ with our neighbors? Romans 15:2; Zechariah 8:16.

Note: “Strive to arouse men and women from their spiritual insensibility. Tell them how you found Jesus and how blessed you have been since you gained an experience in His service. Tell them what blessing comes to you as you sit at the feet of Jesus and learn precious lessons from His word. Tell them of the gladness and joy that there is in the Christian life. Your warm, fervent words will convince them that you have found the pearl of great price. Let your cheerful, encouraging words show that you have certainly found the higher way. This is genuine missionary work, and as it is done, many will awake as from a dream.” Testimonies, vol. 9, 38.

  • What help is promised to those who may be bashful, inexperienced, or slow of speech? Exodus 4:10–12.

Note: “If you will only follow on to know the Lord, and do His bidding, you will know by your experience that God will suggest thoughts to you as you attempt to speak words to those who are around you, to restrain them from doing wrong, and to point out to them the way of life.” The Voice in Speech and Song, 28.

“Let our words be gentle as we seek to win souls. God will be wisdom to him who seeks for wisdom from a divine source. We are to seek opportunities on every hand. We are to watch unto prayer, and be ready always to give an answer to every one who asks a reason for the hope that is in us. Lest we shall impress unfavorably one soul for whom Christ has died, we should keep our hearts uplifted to God, so that when the opportunity presents itself, we may have the right word to speak at the right time. If you thus undertake to work for God, the Spirit of God will be your helper. The Holy Spirit will apply the truth spoken in love for the soul. The truth will have quickening power when spoken under the influence of the grace of Christ.” The Review and Herald, October 7, 1902.


  • What topic should be the focus of our conversation as we speak to our friends, neighbors, and coworkers? Psalm 145:5–7, 11, 12.

Note: “Men are tested while in this world by the society they choose, and by the attributes of character they develop. All who belong to the kingdom of Christ are of one family. They love God supremely, and their neighbors as themselves. ‘Therefore, as ye abound in everything, in faith, and utterance, and knowledge, and in all diligence, and in your love to us, see that ye abound in this grace also’—the grace of Christian liberality. ‘To do good and to communicate forget not’ (II Corinthians 8:7). By this communicating the apostle means Christian liberality. God desires that the bounties He has freely given to His children be communicated to those who do not possess so many temporal blessings. By this communication, by the utterance of kindly words, accompanied with deeds of love, those who work for God will find entrance to hearts, and win others to Christ. This part of religion we are not to forget; ‘for with such sacrifices God is well pleased’ (Hebrews 13:16).” The Review and Herald, February 18, 1902.

  • As we approach souls living in darkness, what must we do in order to have Christ’s tactfulness? I Peter 3:15.

Note: “We must individually know for ourselves what is truth, and be prepared to give a reason of the hope that we have with meekness and fear, not in a proud, boasting, self-sufficiency, but with the spirit of Christ.” Evangelism, 69.

  • Why is gentleness important? Colossians 4:6.

Note: “If we follow Christ’s example in doing good, hearts will open to us as they did to Him. Not abruptly, but with tact born of divine love, we can tell them of Him who is the ‘Chiefest among ten thousand’ and the One ‘altogether lovely’ (Song of Solomon 5:10, 16). This is the very highest work in which we can employ the talent of speech. It was given to us that we might present Christ as the sin-pardoning Saviour.” Christ’s Object Lessons, 339.


  • How can the talent of speech be used to its fullest potential? Psalms 77:12; 119:46, 172.

Note: “Talk of the goodness and love of Jesus. You and I have been granted the blessing of speech, which is a talent of great value. It is to be used in talking of those things which increase love for Jesus. Let us talk of His mercy, of the gracious words He spoke to encourage and comfort, to bring hope and joy and love to our hearts. … The enemy will cast his shadow between Christ and our souls. He will tempt us to talk in a doubting, faithless way. But when disagreeable thoughts seek for utterance, do not give expression to them. Talk faith. Talk of the grace of our Lord and Saviour, of His love and mercy, of the beauty of His character.” The Voice in Speech and Song, 15.

  • How can we give evidence on earth that we are learning to speak the language of heaven? Revelation 14:5; Proverbs 8:8.

Note: “If we would guard our words, so that nothing but kindness shall escape our lips, we will give evidence that we are preparing to become members of the heavenly family.” Medical Ministry, 213.

“The love of Christ in the heart is revealed by the expression of praise. Those who are consecrated to God will show this by their sanctified conversation. If their hearts are pure, their words will be pure, showing an elevated principle working in a sanctified direction.” The Review and Herald, January 18, 1898.


1 How can the talent of speech be used to witness for God?

2 What type of character should our conversation reveal?

3 What will be the center of our conversation with our neighbors?

4 How is our speech naturally affected by our life and attitude?

5 What steps will lead a person to speak the language of heaven?

Copyright © 2007 Reformation Herald Publishing Association, 5240 Hollins Road, Roanoke, Virginia. Reprinted by permission.

Recipe – Cherry-Raspberry Buckle

Buckles are a traditional fruit-studded dessert that’s like a soft, moist cake. This recipe uses a combination of cherries and raspberries, but try any fruit combination that sounds good to you. Just don’t exceed the total of 3 cups fruit—too much fruit will make the cake too wet.

1 ½ cups white whole-wheat flour

½ cup granulated sugar

2 tsp. baking powder (aluminum free)

1 egg replacer

½ tsp. ground cardamom

1 tsp. vanilla extract

¼ tsp. salt

1 ½ cups halved pitted sweet cherries

½ cup soy milk

1 ½ cups raspberries

½ cup unsweetened applesauce

½ cups light olive oil

2 tsp. raw cane sugar

2 Tbsp. sliced almonds

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Coat a 9-inch baking dish with cooking spray. Whisk flour, baking powder, cardamom and salt in a large bowl. Whisk milk, applesauce, oil, granulated sugar, egg replacer and vanilla in a medium bowl until blended. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and gently fold until blended. Sprinkle berries and cherries on top and fold just until blended. Spoon the batter into the prepared baking dish. Sprinkle with almonds and raw sugar (if using).

Bake until golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with just a few moist crumbs, 45 to 55 minutes. Let cool for about 30 minutes before serving.

*Be mindful that this is a dessert and should be eaten in moderation.

Food – Berries

If you’ve ever had the pleasure of picking berries right from a garden or gathering wild berries in the woods, you already know how wonderful and tasty fresh berries are. If not, you can still find fresh berries in the summer at farmers’ markets and pick-your-own berry farms. They’re also available any time of the year at supermarkets and grocery stores.

Berries are low in calories, high in fiber and they contain the vitamins and minerals your body needs to function normally. One cup of strawberries contains over 100 milligrams of vitamin C, almost as much as a cup of orange juice. You need vitamin C for immune system function and for strong connective tissue. Strawberries also add a bit of calcium, magnesium, folate and potassium and have only 53 calories.

One cup of blueberries offers a smaller amount of vitamin C, minerals and phytochemicals for only 83 calories. The same amount of cranberries is similar, but with only 44 calories; one cup of raspberries offers vitamin C and potassium for 64 calories.

You can choose other berries with similar nutrition, such as loganberries, currants, gooseberries, lingonberries and bilberries.

Berries contain phytochemicals and flavonoids that may help to prevent some forms of cancer. Cranberries and blueberries contain a substance that may prevent bladder infections. Eating a diet rich in blackberries, blueberries, raspberries, cranberries and strawberries may help to reduce your risk of several types of cancers. Blueberries and raspberries also contain lutein, which is important for healthy vision.

Every grocery store carries a wide variety of fresh, canned and frozen berries. Look in the produce section for ripe, firm, brightly colored berries with no sign of mold or mushy spots. Fresh berries are easy to eat and they don’t require much preparation. Most berries are naturally sweet so you don’t need to add sugar or toppings. Just rinse them under water and serve for a nutritious snack or dessert.

Berries can also be found in the frozen foods section of the grocery store. Look for berries that are frozen without any added sugar or syrup. Frozen berries aren’t as firm as freshly picked berries (after they thaw anyway), but they are still delicious and nutritious.

Dried berries are sold in the snack aisle of the grocery store. They look like raisins and can be used in recipes that call for raisins. May 15, 2013.

Insight – Influence of Worldly Reading

I wish to speak freely to my young friends on this subject through the Instructor; and I am particularly desirous to do so, because I know from my own experience that it is of no trifling consequence. While we live in such a solemn hour, just when the last echo of mercy is dying away, and Satan is especially busy in every possible way to draw the mind from God, and prevent us from securing the salvation of our souls, how carefully we ought to watch lest he should in some way get an advantage, and lead us astray, even before we are aware of it. Feeling grateful for the mercy that has opened my eyes to one of the fatal snares that had been laid for my feet, I am anxious, as far as in my power, to caution my young brothers and sisters, lest they be overtaken in a similar fault. It is in regard to reading such books as may indeed charm and captivate the mind, but which do not tend to make us more spiritual, or better prepared to endure the trials, and overcome the temptations that we meet with from day to day. A little sketch of my own experience on this point, will best express what I would say.

I had naturally a fondness for reading of almost any kind, but especially for romance and anything in the form of a story, seemed perfectly irresistible. But for some years after I gave my heart to God, the only reading I allowed myself, was the Bible and strictly religious books. In the Christian experience of such eminently holy persons as Mr. and Mrs. Fletcher, I greatly delighted, and never read them without more earnestly desiring to be, as they were, conformed to the image of Christ, and a fuller determination to overcome, as they overcame. But as time passed on, and I began to leave my first love, I gradually grew less and less strict, and indulged my natural taste for reading more freely. Poetry, I regarded as a gift so divine, that I was fully at liberty to read whatever I met with in that dress. But in this I erred; for the highest and noblest gifts may be perverted to a bad use. And then, I reasoned, there could possibly be no harm in reading some of the beautifully written tales that appear in magazines, etc., especially as many professing Christians were engaged in their publication, and some, in whose piety and superior judgment I had great confidence, encouraged such reading in their families. At first I trembled lest it was wrong; but at length persuaded myself that it was not only right, but really necessary for the improvement of the mind. I determined, however, that my first business should be to serve God, that I would on no account neglect my Bible, and would be very careful that such reading did not engross too much of my attention. But I soon found that in this respect, my power of self-denial was gone, and many, many precious hours were wasted, that, should have been spent in storing my mind with the treasures of heavenly wisdom.

But what was its effect upon my spiritual life? Nothing indeed was farther from my mind than the idea of giving up any part of the truth, or of joining with the world again. But where was that sweet communion with God that I once enjoyed in my closet, and my love for His holy Bible? Alas! it had been neglected, or if I read it daily, its sweetness was gone, and I tremble to think how often I knelt before the Lord with my mind so excited from unprofitable reading, that I hardly realized what I was doing. Where was that trembling conscientiousness that made me so carefully question my conduct, lest some of my ways should be displeasing to God? Then, though I had many evil things to overcome, there was something within, that was continually stirring me up to a holy life; but now, that too, was gone, and though deeply sensible of the change, and constantly mourning over it, I was yet unwilling to admit that the change in my reading habits had much to do with it. I believed I could enjoy religion and still indulge in these things, and many were the resolutions that I formed to be more watchful, more earnest and faithful in secret prayer, and to live nearer to God; but all appeared fruitless and vain. If at times I experienced any measure of the blessing of God, it seemed to vanish like the morning cloud, and the early dew. Indeed, what effort can restore greenness to the leaf, while the worm is suffered to remain at the root? But the Lord was long-suffering, and at length, through His abounding mercy, I was led to see the snare of Satan into which I had fallen; and it became the language of my heart—

“The dearest idol I have known,
Whate’er that idol be;
Help me to tear it from thy throne,
And worship only thee.”

I then resolved that, by the grace of God, I would no longer indulge a taste and inclination so destructive to vital godliness. That my reading should be selected with reference to the glory of God and the best interest of my soul. I would in this manner waste no more of the golden moments that were still left me to prepare for heaven; but would bear in mind that I must give an account of them all to God, and that I was not at liberty to please myself, but should please Him who purchased me with His own blood.

Though this resolution may be severely tried, and the power of temptation is strong, I rely upon the promise of the Lord for strength to overcome. Thus far it is easier than I anticipated, for I taste once more the preciousness of a Saviour’s love. Again He meets me in the closet, and it seems easy to part with all beside. But never again can I rest without the assurance of my acceptance with Him. How good and merciful God has been, my tongue can never express. But at times I can realize and feel it, in some degree at least; and the thought of grieving Him again is more sad than the thought of death. O, I do love Him, and I long to love Him more.

The evil effects of such reading as is here referred to, are many; but one in particular I noticed upon myself. Men and women of the world, without one particle of the spirit of true religion are made to appear as real Christians, and represented as far less human than divine; and as we read, they become in our minds, models of excellence, and worthy of all imitation, and we, look no higher. Thus the standard of piety is lowered to the very dust, and ere we are aware of it we become just like the world. We may think we can read without being influenced by it, but it is not so. We shun our former associates, because we fear the influence of their worldly spirit; but worldly books are no less dangerous companions, and should be as carefully avoided.

Perhaps some of my young friends may find in this little sketch, a record of their own experience, though I hope not many. Yet we are exposed to similar temptations, and may be overtaken in the same snare; so that the fall of one should admonish the others, and we may each, perhaps, expose some device of the enemy, and in this way be helpers to each other. I rejoice that, though we have such an artful and mighty foe to contend with, our God is wiser and stronger than he, and has promised to deliver us if we trust in Him. Jesus has overcome, and we too may overcome, and with Him inherit all things.

My dear young brothers and sisters, let us look heaven-ward. Glory, glory unspeakable is there, and it may all be our own. Let us never for one moment think it hard to part with the, pleasures and enjoyments of this vain, perishing world; but rather rejoice that we are permitted in any degree to deny ourselves for the sake of the friendship of Jesus, and have respect unto the recompense of reward. It is only when we lose sight of the glorious things that God has prepared for those who love Him, that this world possesses any attractions for us. I feel like leaving it all behind, and pressing forward to grasp the everlasting prize. We leave nothing that will be of any value to us in the “day for which all other days were made.” Let us remember this, and employ our time in such a way as will appear to our advantage then. Let us make the Bible our heart’s best treasure, and our book of study, and its sacred truths will sanctify us, its precious promises be our joy even in the midst of grief, and its holy precepts guide us safely through to our Father’s kingdom.

The Youth’s Instructor, January, 1854.

Children Story – Love Your Enemies

“ Love your enemies, do good to them which hate you.” Luke 6:27.

The slave, known as Elijah, had been born a free man in Africa. He was a grown man when slave traders, led by a traitor, a small African man, attacked his village and snatched up all able-bodied young men and dragged them off in chains to the slave ships. He soon forgot the faces of the white traders, but resentment burned within him against the African who had grown rich from the bodies of his own people.

The fact that while in America he could never gain revenge, it grew into a bitter hatred. He took his wrath out on his master, a small man, who even though white, reminded him of his enemy. He slouched around, snarled, threatened and did no more work than he absolutely had to. He opposed his master in every way until, because of the seething rebellion on the plantation, the man was afraid to venture out alone at night.

Then the bitter man came under the influence of Christian slaves, and he met and fell in love with our lovely Jesus. A change came over him, and he helped the weaker slaves. He took care of his master’s interests, until it came to be that, like Joseph of old, his master trusted him with most of the running of the plantation.

The day came when the master went into town to purchase some more slaves, and he gave Elijah full authority to pick who he wanted for the work. He had chosen several when he came to an old man, thin and bent. He looked at him for a few moments and indicated him to join the group he was buying.

“Not him,” his master snapped. “But you said I could have who I want and I want this slave!” Elijah answered.

The dealer spoke quickly, “Since you have bought all these, I’ll throw the old man in free.” The deal was settled.

Elijah took the old man and gave him a place in his own hut and fed him with his food share. After his plantation work was done, he sat up to make clothes for the old slave. He gave him only easy work to do. But the man was old, and one day the master noticed Elijah hurrying in from the fields to his hut every so often, then returning and working as hard as he could to make up for the lost time. Finally the master followed him to the hut to see what was going on.

There he found Elijah sponging the face of the old man with a cool cloth as he lay moaning on a bunk, deathly ill. Anger filled the master and he snapped, “This man is no slave, he’s useless! I told you not to get him!”

“Yes, Massa,” Elijah replied, “But he is a man, a sick man, and he needs my help. I’ll be back to the fields as soon as I cool his face.”

The master snarled, “Who is this slave, anyway? Why are you so anxious to care for him; is he your father?”

“No, he not be my fader.”

“Then he must be your brother, or your uncle.”

“No, Massa, he not my brudda or my uncle.”

“He’s a friend then?”

“No, Massa, He not my friend, He my enemy.”

“Your what?”

“Yes Massa, he my enemy, an’ Lord Jesus, He say to love our enemies an’ do dem good.” Elijah paused. “This slave, he be de man that sold me to the slave traders many year ago when I am a free man in my village in Africa. Now I finds him an’ does him good, like the Good Book say.”

Speechless, the master walked away!

Health – Is Popular Culture Healthy?

Our young people are growing up in an age where they are exposed to hundreds of television channels showing all manner of programs on different subjects. They also have immediate access to an unlimited amount of information to people near and far through e-mail and instant messaging. Besides the computer, there are DVDs, video games, magazines, advertising and malls to fill each young person’s life. Most young people between 2 years old and 18 years old will spend at least, if not more than, 5 hours a day absorbing this so-called popular culture. This popular culture is a very destructive force in their lives because of the values at its foundation. The culture of past generations in the Western world used to reflect Christian values, but the popular culture today reflects different values. We are now in serious danger physically, mentally and spiritually.

Instead of benefitting from our Christian cultures and background, the popular media is now implanting bad values, attitudes, and beliefs in our young people. They are being brainwashed as to what they need, and the majority of the time, their wants have no redeeming value. Anything that may be emotionally, socially or spiritually unhealthy is impressed upon the young people and is very destructive. Some examples include advertising that connects certain toys, clothes, food, or drinks with being popular or cool, or music that encourages racism, sexism, drug use, or violence.

We must remember that even “good” popular culture sometimes is not very good for young people. Many of the daily activities which include television, computers, ipods and cell phones teach children bad habits which include:

  1. Teaching them to be observers and not participants.
  2. Experiencing life vicariously instead of directly. In other words, the experience is felt or enjoyed through imagined participation in the experience of another.
  3. Sedentary games instead of physical activity.
  4. Indirect social contact with others rather than real contact. Many people today have lost the ability to interact positively with others. Even in families there is no interaction; many do not talk with each other because they have nothing to say.
  5. Preventing them from participating in activities that will support their intellectual, emotional, cultural, spiritual, and physical development.

Julius Gilbert White explains as follows:

It is a matter of common knowledge that human existence consists essentially of the exercise of three sets of powers: (1) the physical, (2) the mental, (3) the spiritual.

The physical body and life provide the habitation for the mental powers, which give life to them and so make their function possible.

Likewise, the physical life and the mental powers combined make it possible for men to meditate upon and conceive spiritual things, accept spiritual ideals and truths, and render a spiritual service, and so have a spiritual experience. Without the physical life there can be neither mental powers nor spiritual experience.

Everything depends, then, upon the physical life, which is the foundation of the entire structure of human existence, including the spiritual life, which is the highest object of man’s existence.

“The physical life consists essentially of the use of five senses—abilities to see, hear, taste, smell, and feel. If the foundation be destroyed the entire structure is ruined.” Julius Gilbert White, The Christian’s Experience, (Northwestern Publishing Association, Sacramento, California) 37, 38.

The devil wants to destroy the foundation of our young people. He knows that if he destroys the physical life, then the mental powers and spiritual experience will also be destroyed.

The following is taken from an article in the magazine Parenting.

Television, movies, and video games glamorize violence, sexuality, wealth, celebrity, and the use of alcohol, drugs, and cigarettes. Fashion and celebrity magazines affect how girls think about their bodies, the amount they diet and exercise, and the occurrence of eating disorders. The internet gives your children limitless access to a universe of inappropriate information. In sum, popular culture in excess and without guidance is destroying your children psychologically, emotionally, socially, spiritually, and physically.

Popular culture is like a network of saboteurs that infiltrate your family’s lives with stealth and deception, hiding behind entertaining characters, bright images, and fun music. You probably don’t notice half of the unhealthy messages being conveyed to your children. It is also an invading army that overwhelms your children with these destructive messages. It attempts to control every aspect of your children’s lives: their values, attitudes, and beliefs about themselves and the world that they live in; their thoughts, emotions, and behavior; their needs, wants, goals, hopes, and dreams; their interests and avocations; their choices and their decisions. With this control, popular culture can tell children what to eat and drink, what to wear, what to listen to and watch, and children have little ability to resist.

The mere presence of popular culture shouldn’t be your greatest worry. Rather, your greatest concern should be the influence that this presence has on your children. Few people really understand how popular culture affects children’s lives. Even fewer people realize how truly harmful it is to children, families, communities, and to our society as a whole. Popular culture attacks children at their most basic level, the values that guide their lives.

Popular culture promotes the worst values in children and disguises them all as entertainment. Reality TV, for example, has made the “seven deadly sins”—pride, avarice, envy, wrath, lust, gluttony, and sloth—attributes to be admired. Throw in selfishness, deceit, spite, humiliation, cruelty, and vengeance—all qualities seen and revered in popular culture—and you have the personification of the worst kind of person. Popular culture makes heroic decidedly unheroic values, characters, and behavior. Source: (look in the index for “Know your Children’s enemy”).

Remember the family unit. “Let parents seek, in their own character and in their home life, to exemplify the love and beneficence of the heavenly Father. Let the home be full of sunshine. This will be worth far more to your children than lands or money. Let the home love be kept alive in their hearts, that they may look back upon the home of their childhood as a place of peace and happiness next to heaven. The members of the family do not all have the same stamp of character, and there will be frequent occasion for the exercise of patience and forbearance; but through love and self-discipline all may be bound together in the closest union.” Patriarchs and Prophets, 176.

So, shut down the computers and turn off the TV and cell phones and spend some time doing things together as a family. You could put on your running shoes and take your children for a walk out in the sunshine or dig a vegetable garden. Be creative and choose activities that are physically, mentally and spiritually healthy that will build tight family bonds and happy memories.

Do your best to keep your family healthy!

Q&A- For which three women did Elijah or Elisha perform a miracle and where in the Bible can I find these stories?


I am confused! For which three women did Elijah or Elisha perform a miracle and where in the Bible can I find these stories?


There were three women, two widows and a great woman who was not a widow, about which the Bible tells us. They are as follows:

Elijah and The Widow of Zarephath

(I Kings 17:9–24)

The Lord told Elijah to go to Zarephath where he would there find a widow woman who would sustain him. When he arrived at the gate of the city, a woman was there gathering sticks. “He called to her, and said, Fetch me, I pray thee, a little water in a vessel, that I may drink. And as she was going to fetch it, he called to her, and said, Bring me, I pray thee, a morsel of bread in thine hand” (verses 10, 11). The widow tells him how poor she and her son are, with just a little oil and a little meal left for one last cake (verse 12). She generously gave what she had to the prophet, and God blessed her by performing a miracle. Each day the woman had just a little oil and a little meal to provide for her and her son and Elijah, until the drought broke (verses 13–15).

Elisha and The Widow with Two Sons

(II Kings 4:1–7)

The woman’s husband was dead, and she found out she had no means to pay her debt. Desperate to know what to do, for the creditor had come to take the widow’s two sons in lieu of payment, she reached out to Elisha, the prophet. The only commodity she had in her house was a pot of oil. Elisha told her to go and borrow as many empty vessels as she could from all of her neighbors. When she got home with them, she was to go in and shut the door behind her and her sons and start pouring the oil she had into the vessels, setting them aside as they filled. To her amazement all the vessels were filled, and when she asked for more vessels, her sons told her there were no more. The oil stopped pouring as soon as the last jar was full. When she told Elisha what had happened, he told her to go sell the oil, pay off her debt, and use the remaining oil for her family.

Elisha and The Great Woman of Shunem

(II Kings 4:8–37)

The woman of Shunem whom the Bible describes as great or notable (possibly for her generosity), was not a widow, but she was childless. Because of her kindness to Elisha, he prayed to the Lord that she may have a child. She did conceive, and the following year she bore a son. Later, the child died, so she ran to Elisha for help. God worked a miracle through Elisha, and the child was restored to his mother.