Question – What does it mean: “Ye cannot serve God and mammon” [riches]?

The inhabitants had before them living evidences of the power and mercy of Him whom they drove from their midst. They saw that the lunatics had been restored to reason; but they were so fearful of incurring pecuniary loss that the Saviour, who had baffled the Prince of Darkness before their eyes, was treated as an unwelcome invader, and they turned the priceless Gift of Heaven from their doors, and blindly rejected His visit of mercy. We have not the opportunity of turning from the person of Christ, as did the Gadarenes; but there are many in these days who refuse to follow His teachings, because in so doing they must sacrifice some worldly interest. Many, in the various pursuits of life, turn Jesus from their hearts, fearful that His presence may cost them pecuniary loss. Like the selfish Gadarenes, they overlook His grace, and ruthlessly drive His Spirit from them. To such His words apply: ‘Ye cannot serve God and mammon’ (Matthew 6:24; Luke 16:13, last parts).” The Spirit of Prophecy, vol. 2, 314.

“Double-minded men and women are Satan’s best allies. Whatever favorable opinion they may have of themselves, they are dissemblers. All who are loyal to God and the truth must stand firmly for the right because it is right. To yoke up with those who are unconsecrated, and yet be loyal to the truth, is simply impossible. We cannot unite with those who are serving themselves, who are working on worldly plans, and not lose our connection with the heavenly Counselor. We may recover ourselves from the snare of the enemy, but we are bruised and wounded, and our experience is dwarfed.” The Review and Herald, April 19, 1898.

“Those who stand under the bloodstained banner of Prince Immanuel cannot be united with the Free Masons or with any secret organization. The seal of the living God will not be placed upon anyone who maintains such a connection after the light of truth has shone upon his pathway. Christ is not divided, and Christians cannot serve God and mammon. The Lord says, ‘Come out from among them, and be ye separate … and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you, and will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be My sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty’ (2 Corinthians 6:17, 18).” Selected Messages, Book 2, 140.

Bible Study Guides – Joshua’s Final Message

March 22 – 28, 2020

Key Text

“Choose you this day whom ye will serve … as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord” (Joshua 24:15).

Study Help:  Patriarchs and Prophets, 521–524; Testimonies, vol. 5, 361–368.


“You may yet become sanctified through the truth; or you may, if you choose, walk in the darkness of unbelief, lose heaven, and lose all. By walking in the light and working out the will of God, you may overcome your selfish nature.” Testimonies, vol. 4, 214.



a. What condition did Israel finally enjoy for some time? Of what did Joshua then remind the people? Joshua 23:1–4; 24:11–13.

b. With what assurances did Joshua exhort them? Joshua 23:5–10. What should we learn from the commitment required of them?

Note: “They [the people] were to form no allegiance with the idolatrous nations that God had appointed to utter destruction. They were forbidden to manifest the least respect for the gods of the heathen. … They were warned that familiarity with idolatry would remove their abhorrence of it, and would expose them to God’s displeasure.” The Signs of the Times, May 19, 1881.

“If we love the things of the world and have pleasure in unrighteousness or fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness we have put the stumbling block of our iniquity before our face and have set up idols in our heart. And unless by determined effort we put them away we shall never be acknowledged as the sons and daughters of God.” Testimonies, vol. 5, 164.



a. What warning did Joshua give as a key factor to help God’s people reduce their chances of slipping into idolatry? Joshua 23:11–13.

b. How is this solemn warning repeated in the Christian era? 2 Corinthians 6:14–18; 1 Corinthians 7:39.

Note: “Ask yourself: ‘Will not an unbelieving husband lead my thoughts away from Jesus? He is a lover of pleasure more than a lover of God; will he not lead me to enjoy the things that he enjoys?’ The path to eternal life is steep and rugged. Take no additional weights to retard your progress. …

“As a child of God, a subject of Christ’s kingdom, the purchase of His blood, how can you connect yourself with one who does not acknowledge His claims, who is not controlled by His Spirit? … Though the companion of your choice were in all other respects worthy (which he is not), yet he has not accepted the truth for this time; he is an unbeliever, and you are forbidden of heaven to unite yourself with him. You cannot, without peril to your soul, disregard this divine injunction.

“I would warn you of your danger before it shall be too late. You listen to smooth, pleasant words and are led to believe that all will be well; but you do not read the motives that prompt these fair speeches. You cannot see the depths of wickedness hidden in the heart. You cannot look behind the scenes and discern the snares that Satan is laying for your soul. He would lead you to pursue such a course that he can obtain easy access to aim his shafts of temptation against you. Do not give him the least advantage. While God moves upon the minds of His servants, Satan works through the children of disobedience. There is no concord between Christ and Belial. The two cannot harmonize. To connect with an unbeliever is to place yourself on Satan’s ground. You grieve the Spirit of God and forfeit His protection. Can you afford to have such terrible odds against you in fighting the battle for everlasting life? …

“Remember, you have a heaven to gain, an open path to perdition to shun. God means what He says.” Testimonies, vol. 5, 363–365.



a. Why is inordinate affection a problem? Isaiah 5:18–21; Colossians 3:5, 6.

Note: “One of the greatest dangers that besets the people of God today, is that of association with the ungodly; especially in uniting themselves in marriage with unbelievers. With many, the love for the human eclipses the love for the divine. They take the first step in backsliding by venturing to disregard the Lord’s express command; and complete apostasy is too often the result. It has ever proved a dangerous thing for men to carry out their own will in opposition to the requirements of God. …

“As a rule, those who choose for their friends and companions, persons who reject Christ and trample upon God’s law, eventually become of the same mind and spirit.” “Ellen G. White Comments,” The Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary, vol. 2, 1000.

“There is in the Christian world an astonishing, alarming indifference to the teaching of God’s word in regard to the marriage of Christians with unbelievers. … Men and women who are otherwise sensible and conscientious close their ears to counsel; they are deaf to the appeals and entreaties of friends and kindred and of the servants of God… , and the friend who is faithful enough to utter a remonstrance is treated as an enemy. All this is as Satan would have it. He weaves his spell about the soul, and it becomes bewitched, infatuated. Reason lets fall the reins of self-control upon the neck of lust, unsanctified passion bears sway, until, too late, the victim awakens to a life of misery and bondage.” Testimonies, vol. 5, 365, 366.

b. Explain the cause-and-effect reality Joshua presented. Joshua 23:14–16.

Note: “God’s plan for the salvation of men, is perfect in every particular. If we will faithfully perform our allotted part, all will be well with us. It is man’s apostasy that causes discord, and brings wretchedness and ruin. God never uses His power to oppress the creatures of His hand. He never requires more than man is able to perform; never punishes His disobedient children more than is necessary to bring them to repentance; or to deter others from following their example. Rebellion against God is inexcusable.” The Signs of the Times, May 19, 1881.



a. What appeal did Joshua make? Joshua 24:1, 14, 15. How can this inspire us?

Note: “The worship of idols was still to some extent secretly practiced, and Joshua endeavored now to bring them [the people] to a decision that should banish this sin from Israel.” Patriarchs and Prophets, 523.

“If the favor of God was worth anything, it was worth everything. Thus Joshua had decided; and after weighing the whole matter, he had determined to serve Him with full purpose of heart. And more than this, he would endeavour to induce his family to pursue the same course. …

“The oft-repeated warnings against idolatry addressed to the Hebrew host, are no less applicable to us. Everything which leads the affections away from God is an idol, and betrays us into sin. If we serve God willingly and joyfully, preferring His service to the service of sin and Satan; if we choose Him, openly and boldly turning from all the attractions and vanities of the world, we shall enjoy His blessing in this life, and shall dwell forever in His presence in the future life.

“The Lord our God is a jealous God. He is just and holy. He will not be trifled with. He reads a deceptive heart. He abhors a double mind. He hates lukewarmness. We cannot serve God and mammon, for they are antagonistic.” The Signs of the Times, May 19, 1881.

b. What did God want the Israelites to realize about their frailty? Joshua 24:16–20. Are we any different?

Note: “Before there could be any permanent reformation the people must be led to feel their utter inability in themselves to render obedience to God. … While they trusted in their own strength and righteousness, it was impossible for them to secure the pardon of their sins; they could not meet the claims of God’s perfect law, and it was in vain that they pledged themselves to serve God. It was only by faith in Christ that they could secure pardon of sin and receive strength to obey God’s law. They must cease to rely upon their own efforts for salvation, they must trust wholly in the merits of the promised Saviour, if they would be accepted of God.” Patriarchs and Prophets, 524.



a. What remarkable pledge did Israel make before Joshua in the sight of God? What was done as a memorial of this pledge? Joshua 24:21–27.

b. How was the closing period of Joshua’s life filled with dedication to God? Joshua 24:29–31. How did the people react under reproof when their experience wavered? Judges 2:1–5.

Note: “No stain rested upon the holy character of Joshua. He was a wise leader. His life was wholly devoted to God. …

“Joshua was loved and respected by all Israel, and his death was much lamented by them.” The Spirit of Prophecy, vol. 1, 351, 352.

“[Judges 2:1, 2 quoted.] The people bowed before God in contrition and repentance. They offered sacrifice, and confessed to God and to one another. The sacrifices they offered would have been of no value if they had not shown true repentance. Their contrition was genuine. The grace of Christ wrought in their hearts as they confessed their sins and offered sacrifice, and God forgave them.

“The revival was genuine. It wrought a reformation among the people. They remained true to the covenant they had made. The people served the Lord all the days of Joshua, and all the days of the elders that outlived Joshua, who had seen the great works of the Lord.” “Ellen G. White Comments,” The Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary, vol. 2, 1001.



1    On what condition do the people of God enjoy His special protection?

2    What happens when a person is enticed into marriage with an unbeliever?

3    Why is it so difficult to reason with a person infatuated with an unbeliever?

4    How liable is human nature to slip into idolatry? Why?

5    What makes the era of Joshua’s leadership outstanding in Israel’s history?

 © 2019, Reformation Herald Publishing Association, 5240 Hollins Road, Roanoke, Virginia 24019-5048, U.S.A.

Bible Study Guides – The Final Work and the Ultimate School

June 24, 2012 – June 30, 2012

Key Text

“The fear of the Lord is the instruction of wisdom; and before honour is humility.” Proverbs 15:33.

Study Help: Education, 301–309.


“In our life here, earthly, sin-restricted though it is, the greatest joy and the highest education are in service. And in the future state, untrammeled by the limitations of sinful humanity, it is in service that our greatest joy and our highest education will be found.” Education, 309.


  • What perspective do we need to gain in recognizing education as a means to an end—rather than an end in itself? Ephesians 1:17–19.

Note: “He [Christ] did not tell them [His disciples] to establish a seminary in Jerusalem, and to gather together students to be instructed in the higher classics. ‘Go ye into all the world,’ He said, ‘and preach the gospel to every creature,’ ‘teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you; and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world’ [Mark 16:15; Matthew 28:20].

“Do not gather together those to whom God has given this commission, and make them believe that they have to spend years in college in order to obtain a training for the Lord’s work. Christ’s presence is of more value than years of training. Let our young people come under the yoke of Christ, and by faith go forth as gospel medical missionaries, taking with them the promise, ‘Lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world.’ Let them go forth two and two, depending on God, not on man, for their wisdom and their success. Let them search the Scriptures, and then present the truths of God’s word to others. Let them be guided by the principles that God has laid down.” Loma Linda Messages, 71, 72.


  • To what work is God calling His people today? Isaiah 54:1–3.

Note: “The Lord calls upon our young people to enter our schools and quickly fit themselves for service. In various places outside of cities, schools are to be established where our youth can receive an education that will prepare them to go forth to do evangelical work and medical missionary work.

“The Lord must be given an opportunity to show men their duty and to work upon their minds. No one is to bind himself to serve for a term of years under the direction of one group of men or in one specified branch of the Master’s work; for the Lord Himself will call men, as of old He called the humble fishermen, and will Himself give them instruction regarding their field of labor and the methods they should follow. He will call men from the plow and from other occupations to give the last note of warning to perishing souls. There are many ways in which to work for the Master, and the Great Teacher will open the understanding of these workers, enabling them to see wondrous things in His word.” Testimonies, vol. 9, 170.

  • Describe an inspiring prophecy soon to be fulfilled. Psalm 119:132.

Note: “So great are the world’s needs, that not all who are called to be medical missionary evangelists can afford to spend years in preparation before beginning to do actual field work. Soon doors now open to the gospel messenger will be forever closed. God calls upon many who are prepared to do acceptable service, to carry the message now, not waiting for further preparation; for while some delay, the enemy may take possession of fields now open. …

“Little companies who have received a suitable training in evangelical and medical missionary lines should go forth to do the work to which Christ appointed His disciples. Let them labor as evangelists, scattering our publications, talking of the truth to those they meet, praying for the sick, and, if need be, treating them, not with drugs, but with nature’s remedies, ever realizing their dependence on God. As they unite in the work of teaching and healing they will reap a rich harvest of souls.” Counsels to Parents, Teachers, and Students, 469.


  • What is a key aspect of education for the final work, and how can it spread blessings quickly? Proverbs 15:33; Zechariah 4:10, first part.

Note: “The Lord, in His great goodness and matchless love, has been urging upon His human instrumentalities that missionaries are not really complete in their education unless they have a knowledge of how to treat the sick and suffering.” Counsels on Health, 536.

“Soon there will be no work done in ministerial lines but medical missionary work.” Ibid., 533.

“Now while the world is favorable toward the teaching of the health reform principles, moves should be made to secure for our own physicians the privilege of imparting medical instruction to our young people who would otherwise be led to attend the worldly medical colleges. The time will come when it will be more difficult than it now is to arrange for the training of our young people in medical missionary lines.” The Medical Evangelist, April 1, 1910.

“God has not given us the work of erecting immense sanitariums, to be used as health resorts for all who may come. Neither is it His purpose that medical missionary workers shall spend a long term of years in college before they enter the field. Let the young men and women who know the truth go to work, not in places where the truth has been proclaimed, but in places that have not heard the message, and let them work as canvassers and evangelists.” Loma Linda Messages, 71.

“As long as probation continues, there will be opportunity for the canvasser to work. … ‘When they persecute you in this city, flee ye into another’ [Matthew 10:23]. If persecution comes there, go to still another place.” Testimonies, vol. 6, 478.

  • How only can we flourish in the sight of God? I Corinthians 1:26, 30.

Note: “The work will be given to those who will take it, those who prize it, who weave its principles into their everyday experience. God will choose humble men who are seeking to glorify His name and advance His cause rather than to honor and advance themselves. He will raise up men who have not so much worldly wisdom, but who are connected with Him, and who will seek strength and counsel from above.” Testimonies, vol. 5, 461.


  • What should be our overall goal whenever seeking to advance our education? I Corinthians 9:16, 22–24.

Note: “Those who have education, and who consecrate themselves to the service of God, can do service in a greater variety of ways, and can accomplish a much more extensive work in bringing souls to the knowledge of the truth than can those who are uneducated. They are on vantage ground, because of the discipline of mind which they have had. We would not depreciate education in the least, but would counsel that it be carried forward with a full sense of the shortness of time, and the great work that is to be accomplished before the coming of Christ. We would not have the students receive the idea that they can spend many years in acquiring an education. Let them use the education that they can acquire in a reasonable length of time, in carrying forward the work of God.” Fundamentals of Christian Education, 369, 370.

  • What promise is precious to teachers struggling with the challenge of their high calling to educate souls for eternity? Isaiah 59:19.

Note: “Trials will be met in this work; discouragements will press in upon the soul as teachers see that their labors are not always appreciated. Satan will exercise his power over them in temptations, in discouragements, in afflictions of bodily infirmities, hoping that he can cause them to murmur against God and close their understanding to His goodness, mercy, and love, and the exceeding weight of glory that is to be the reward of the overcomer. But God is leading these souls to more perfect confidence in their heavenly Father. His eye is upon them every moment; and if they lift their cry to Him in faith, if they will stay their souls upon Him in their perplexities, the Lord will bring them forth as gold purified. The Lord Jesus has said: ‘I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.’ Hebrews 13:5. God may permit a train of circumstances to come that will lead them to flee to the Stronghold, by faith pressing to the throne of God amid thick clouds of darkness; for even here His presence is concealed. But He is ever ready to deliver all that trust in Him.” Testimonies, vol. 6, 156, 157.


  • In the day of final reckoning, what will be asked of parents, and what shall we answer, whatever it may cost us in this life? Jeremiah 13:20; Isaiah 8:18; Hebrews 2:13.

Note: “In whatever else we may fail, let us be thorough in the work for our children. If they go forth from the home training, pure and virtuous, if they fill the least and lowest place in God’s great plan of good for the world, our life work can never be called a failure.” Fundamentals of Christian Education, 161.

  • How glorious is the eternal school? Isaiah 64:4; I Corinthians 2:9.

Note: “Heaven is a school; its field of study, the universe; its teacher, the Infinite One.” Education, 301.

“[In the school of the hereafter], all the perplexities of life’s experience will then be made plain. Where to us have appeared only confusion and disappointment, broken purposes and thwarted plans, will be seen a grand, overruling, victorious purpose, a divine harmony.” Ibid., 305.

“The years of eternity, as they roll [in the city of God], will bring richer and still more glorious revelations of God and of Christ. As knowledge is progressive, so will love, reverence, and happiness increase. The more men learn of God, the greater will be their admiration of His character.” The Great Controversy, 678.

“Both the redeemed and the unfallen beings will find in the cross of Christ their science and their song. It will be seen that the glory shining in the face of Jesus is the glory of self-sacrificing love.” The Desire of Ages, 19, 20.


1 How can we revive the practical training Jesus gave His disciples?

2 Why is medical missionary training so valuable for the laity?

3 How can we prepare for the work soon to close earth’s history?

4 How can overwhelmed teachers be encouraged?

5 What perspective do we need in all that we do in life?

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

Bible Study Guides – Strength for Service

October 28, 2012 – November 3, 2012

The Power of Prayer

Key Text

“For whether is greater, he that sitteth at meat, or he that serveth? is not he that sitteth at meat? but I am among you as he that serveth.” Luke 22:27.

Study Help: Christ’s Object Lessons, 139–149; The Ministry of Healing, 497–502.


“Our prayers are not to be a selfish asking, merely for our own benefit. We are to ask that we may give.” Christ’s Object Lessons, 142.


  • How did the longing of Hannah reflect a desire to serve? I Samuel 1:1–11.
  • In what ways are we all to learn and be encouraged by God’s answer to Hannah’s prayer? I Samuel 1:19, 20, 27, 28; 2:18–21, 26.

Note: “During the first three years of the life of Samuel the prophet, his mother carefully taught him to distinguish between good and evil. … Though Samuel’s youth was passed at the tabernacle devoted to the worship of God, he was not free from evil influences or sinful example. The sons of Eli feared not God, nor honored their father; but Samuel did not seek their company nor follow their evil ways. His early training led him to choose to maintain his Christian integrity. What a reward was Hannah’s! and what an encouragement to faithfulness is her example!” The Review and Herald, September 8, 1904.

“When separated from her child, the faithful mother’s solicitude did not cease. He was the subject of her prayers. … She did not ask that he might be great, but earnestly pleaded that he might be good. Her faith and devotion were rewarded. She saw her son, in the simplicity of childhood, walking in the love and fear of God. She saw him growing up to manhood in favor with God and man, humble, reverent, prompt in duty, and earnest in the service of his divine Master.” The Signs of the Times, November 3, 1881.


  • Why was Solomon’s desire for wisdom rewarded by God? I Kings 3:5–15.

Note: “Solomon realized that he lacked discernment. It was his great need that led him to seek God for wisdom. In his heart there was no selfish aspiration for a knowledge that would exalt him above his brethren.” The Review and Herald, October 26, 1905.

  • How did Solomon’s attitude contrast with that of the rich young ruler to whom Jesus presented a practical test? Luke 18:18–23.

Note: “The Lord said, because he [Solomon] had not asked for temporal riches or for worldly honor, he should have not only the blessing of wisdom, but riches and honor also. One who has heavenly wisdom is prepared to make a right use of the talents and means which God has given him. All the talents and ability he may possess will not lead him to forget the Giver. There is danger of some … being self-deceived, as was the young man: [Luke 18:18, 21, 22 quoted]. … This practical test unfolded to the deceived young man his supreme selfishness. His deficiency of character spoiled all his virtues.” The Signs of the Times, February 14, 1878.

  • What can all kinds of leaders learn from Solomon? Proverbs 20:28.

Note: “All who occupy responsible positions need to learn the lesson that is taught in Solomon’s humble prayer. They are ever to remember that position will never change the character or render man infallible. The higher the position a man occupies, the greater the responsibility he has to bear, the wider will be the influence he exerts and the greater his need to feel his dependence on the wisdom and strength of God and to cultivate the best and most holy character. Those who accept a position of responsibility in the cause of God should always remember that with the call to this work God has also called them to walk circumspectly before Him and before their fellow men. Instead of considering it their duty to order and dictate and command, they should realize that they are to be learners themselves. When a responsible worker fails to learn this lesson, the sooner he is released from his responsibilities the better it will be for him and for the work of God.” Testimonies, vol. 9, 282, 283.


  • What was the theme of Christ’s life on earth? Isaiah 50:4; Matthew 20:28.

Note: “Not for Himself, but for others, He [Christ] lived and thought and prayed. From hours spent with God He 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.

  • What do we learn from Christ’s aim to maintain a sanctified life? John 17:19.

Note: “Christ’s lessons in regard to prayer should be carefully considered. There is a divine science in prayer, and His illustration brings to view principles that all need to understand. He shows what is the true spirit of prayer, He teaches the necessity of perseverance in presenting our requests to God, and assures us of His willingness to hear and answer prayer. …

“The principle of Christ’s life must be the principle of our lives. … Our mission to the world is not to serve or please ourselves; we are to glorify God by co-operating with Him to save sinners. We are to ask blessings from God that we may communicate to others. The capacity for receiving is preserved only by imparting. We cannot continue to receive heavenly treasure without communicating to those around us.” Christ’s Object Lessons, 142, 143.

“We are engaged in a great work, and there are many opportunities for service in various lines. Let all pray earnestly that God may guide them into the right channels of service. God’s workmen should not neglect any opportunity to help others in every possible way. If they seek God unselfishly for counsel, His word, which bringeth salvation, will lead them.” Testimonies to Ministers and Gospel Workers, 497.

“God’s servants are to stand as minutemen, ready for service at a moment’s notice. My brethren, from hour to hour opportunities to serve God will open before you. These constantly come and go. Be ever ready to make the most of them. That chance to speak in the hearing of some needy soul the word of life may never again offer itself.” Gospel Workers, 195.


  • With what parable does Christ teach of perseverance in prayer? Luke 11:5–8.

Note: “In the parable [of the friend calling at midnight] the petitioner was again and again repulsed, but he did not relinquish his purpose. So our prayers do not always seem to receive an immediate answer; but Christ teaches that we should not cease to pray. Prayer is not to work any change in God; it is to bring us into harmony with God. When we make request of Him, He may see that it is necessary for us to search our hearts and repent of sin. Therefore He takes us through test and trial, He brings us through humiliation, that we may see what hinders the working of His Holy Spirit through us.” Christ’s Object Lessons, 143.

“Many have not a living faith. This is why they do not see more of the power of God. … They take themselves into their own keeping. They plan and devise, but pray little, and have little real trust in God. They think they have faith, but it is only the impulse of the moment. Failing to realize their own need, or God’s willingness to give, they do not persevere in keeping their requests before the Lord.

“Our prayers are to be as earnest and persistent as was the petition of the needy friend who asked for the loaves at midnight. The more earnestly and steadfastly we ask, the closer will be our spiritual union with Christ. We shall receive increased blessings because we have increased faith.” Ibid., 145, 146.

  • How much is promised us when our desire is to serve others? Luke 6:38.

Note: “In the parable, he who asks bread for the stranger, receives ‘as many as he needeth’ [Luke 11:18]. And in what measure will God impart to us that we may impart to others? ‘According to the measure of the gift of Christ.’ Ephesians 4:7. Angels are watching with intense interest to see how man is dealing with his fellow men. When they see one manifest Christlike sympathy for the erring, they press to his side and bring to his remembrance words to speak that will be as the bread of life to the soul. … Your testimony in its genuineness and reality He will make powerful in the power of the life to come. The word of the Lord will be in your mouth as truth and righteousness.

“Personal effort for others should be preceded by much secret prayer; for it requires great wisdom to understand the science of saving souls. Before communicating with men, commune with Christ. At the throne of heavenly grace obtain a preparation for ministering to the people.” Christ’s Object Lessons, 148, 149.


  • What prayer request will bring us the greatest happiness? Luke 11:11–13.

Note: “There is one blessing that all may have who seek for it in the right way. It is the Holy Spirit of God, and this is a blessing that brings all other blessings in its train. If we will come to God as little children, asking for His grace and power and salvation, not for our own uplifting, but that we may bring blessing to those around us, our petitions will not be denied.” In Heavenly Places, 113.

  • As we pray to serve, what are some key points to keep in mind? Acts 5:30–32; Philippians 4:19.

Note: “As Christ lived the law in humanity, so we may do if we will take hold of the Strong for strength. But we are not to place the responsibility of our duty upon others, and wait for them to tell us what to do. We cannot depend for counsel upon humanity. The Lord will teach us our duty just as willingly as He will teach somebody else. If we come to Him in faith, He will speak His mysteries to us personally. Our hearts will often burn within us as One draws nigh to commune with us as He did with Enoch. Those who decide to do nothing in any line that will displease God, will know, after presenting their case before Him, just what course to pursue. And they will receive not only wisdom, but strength. Power for obedience, for service, will be imparted to them, as Christ has promised. Whatever was given to Christ—the ‘all things’ to supply the need of fallen men—was given to Him as the head and representative of humanity. And ‘whatsoever we ask, we receive of Him, because we keep His commandments, and do those things that are pleasing in His sight.’ I John 3:22.” The Desire of Ages, 668.


1 How do the goals of today’s Christian parents differ from Hannah’s?

2 Why should we consider Solomon’s attitude?

3 How can we be ready and equipped to stand as minutemen for God?

4 Why should we continue to ask for the same things?

5 What might be an example of the most important prayer of our entire day?

© 2003 Reformation Herald Publishing Association, Roanoke, Virginia. Reprinted by permission.