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The Desire of Ages / Re: The Desire of Ages--82--Why Weepest Thou?
« Last post by Richard Myers on Today at 09:53:28 AM »
Pastor Sean, is it possible that this great subject is just as much a deception today? Is it possible that many modern day Jews are so deceived they cannot comprehend what it means to have salvation?

 They had heard so much of the doctrines and the so-called scientific theories of the Sadducees that the impression made on their minds in regard to the resurrection was vague.

So it is today. Many in important positions of leadership have been so influenced by doctrines that are contrary to the foundation of our faith that they in turn have confused the flock as to what is required to enter the kingdom of God. Like Nicodemus, they believe they are "rich and increased with goods," but know not what this means. They can read the third chapter of Revelation and not know it applies to the church today and it is a lost condition. Such a deception that leaves so very many believing that all is alright in their own lives, but know not they are miserable, wretched, poor, blind, and naked.

What is the result of preaching false gospels? Why does the Bible tell us "Cursed is the man that bring another gospel into the church?" Because it puts up barriers against the truth.

     As they heard this appointment, so definitely given, the disciples began to think of Christ's words to them foretelling His resurrection. But even now they did not rejoice. They could not cast off their doubt and perplexity. Even when the women declared that they had seen the Lord, the disciples would not believe. They thought them under an illusion.
     Trouble seemed crowding upon trouble. On the sixth day of the week they had seen their Master die; on the first day of the next week they found themselves deprived of His body, and they were accused of having stolen it away for the sake of deceiving the people. They despaired of ever correcting the false impressions that were gaining ground against them. They feared the enmity of the priests and the wrath of the people. They longed for the presence of Jesus, who had helped them in every perplexity.   
     Often they repeated the words, "We trusted that it had been He which should have redeemed Israel." Lonely and sick at heart they remembered His words, "If they do these things in a green tree, what shall be done in the dry?" Luke 24:21; 23:31. They met together in the upper chamber, and closed and fastened the doors, knowing that the fate of their beloved Teacher might at any time be theirs. 

Even when one discovers they are in a lost condition, they do not know how to keep the law of God. They can try and try and try. And, like Saul before his conversion, they cannot. They do not know they need to give the whole heart to Christ and how that can happen. Even though they have heard the Word of God say that by beholding His glory we are changed into the same image, they cannot grasp just what that means. When Jesus told Nicodemus "As Moses lifted up the serpent, so must the Son of Man be lifted up," they cannot understand that it is by beholding the grace of God revealed in Christ hanging on the cross that we are saved. It is by grace through faith that the sinner is transformed into a repentant sinner that is enabled to reveal all of the fruits of the Spirit, not one is missing. Why? Because the Holy Spirit will take possession of the heart and then He brings with Him the power to keep God's law from the heart. This is what it means to be a converted Christian.

May the scales fall from our eyes that we might see Jesus and our continual need of Him.
Where do we find ourselves today? As we look at the way the disciples were mourning and grieving on the very day Jesus rose from the dead, where is our faith on this day when Jesus is ministering for us as our High Priest in the heavenly sanctuary, blotting out the record of the sins of those who have followed Him in full surrender and true repentance, and is pouring out His Spirit upon all who are willing to be made willing? Are we opening our hearts to receive more and more of what God has in store for us while rejoicing in the loveliness of Jesus? Christ calls us to look away from self to Him, and find His strength to made perfect in our weakness!! Let us learn from the way the disciples were acting on the resurrection day of Jesus and grasp by faith the unseen eternal realities that are all around us, the ministering angels who are helping us heavenward, and the SURE PROMISE of Jesus SOON RETURN!!

"While the Saviour was in God's presence, receiving gifts for His church, the disciples thought upon His empty tomb, and mourned and wept. The day that was a day of rejoicing to all heaven was to the disciples a day of uncertainty, confusion, and perplexity. Their unbelief in the testimony of the women gives evidence of how low their faith had sunk. The news of Christ's resurrection was so different from what they had anticipated that they could not believe it. It was too good to be true, they thought. They had heard so much of the doctrines and the so-called scientific theories of the Sadducees that the impression made on their minds in regard to the resurrection was vague. They scarcely knew what the resurrection from the dead could mean. They were unable to take in the great subject." {The Desire of Ages, page 790, paragraph 4}

Let us take in the great subject of what Christ has done for us. It would be well for us to spend a thoughtful hour each day contemplating the life of Christ and letting our imagination grasp each scene in vivid outline as we appreciate what Christ has done for us and His promises that are SURE TO BE FULFILLED! The greatest gift Christ gives us is an experience of true conversion by understanding the power of the gospel of His grace that changes sinners into saints who are imbued with all of the fruits of the Spirit without one missing and gladly obey all the light of truth that God sheds upon their path!! Let us walk in the light while we have the light for Jesus is COMING SOON!!!   
Thursday          May 23

Fighting for Your Prodigal Child

Read Proverbs 22:6. Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.  What is your understanding of this passage? Is this a guarantee, a promise, or a probability?

Sometimes as a parent you do everything you should—spend time teaching your children the right things, live according to your knowledge of God, send them to good schools, attend church regularly, become involved in mission work with them—and they end up leaving the faith in which you raised them. The amount of pain is excruciating, and there is not a moment of rest from your concern for their salvation. The cause is not necessarily the parent’s fault. Children have minds of their own and are ultimately responsible to God for their actions.

This is true, but if we consider why so many are lost, we shall come to understand the influence of one sin. And, we shall also understand that God put it into children to copy what they see in their parents. This can be either a savor of life unto life, or death unto death. Who will deny the truth that most will be lost because of the lessons learned at home.

Some have taken the words “when he is old he will not depart from it” as a promise, a guarantee that proper parenting will always result in their child’s salvation. But Proverbs often gives us principles and not always unconditional promises. What we can take out of this text is the assurance that the lessons learned in childhood will last a lifetime. Every child reaches an age when they either accept the heritage of their parents as their own or reject it. Those parents who were careful to provide their children with godly training have the assurance that what they taught their children will always be with them, and if or when their children walk away, the seeds they planted in their hearts will continuously be in them calling them home. Being a good parent is our choice; how our children turn out is theirs.

Are we wanting to make excuses for our sins? This is often the case. Very sad indeed. God's promises are often conditional. What would be the conditions to the promise made in Proverbs? If we are not perfect in our experience, then we set a bad example before our children. This is a lesson few want to understand. Why? It is true that our children must accept Christ on their own. But, God help the parents understand their influence in their decision. And, how about the influence of a backslidden church where the rate of divorce equals that of the world?

What should a parent do when a child goes astray? Turn your children over to God in earnest prayer. If anybody understands your pain, it is God, whose children, by the billions, have turned their backs on Him, the perfect parent. You can support your prodigals with love and prayer and be ready to stand alongside them as they wrestle with God.

Don’t be too embarrassed to ask for support and prayer, don’t blame yourself, and don’t be so focused on the prodigal that you forget the rest of the family. Parenting a prodigal can divide your household; so, build a unified front with your spouse and set clear boundaries for your child. Remember that God loves your child more than you do, look to a brighter future, and accept that your child is God’s work in progress.

It’s only natural in such a situation to blame yourself. And even if you have made mistakes, why is it better to focus on the future and on the promises of God? See Phil. 3:13.

It would not be good to leave this matter without instructing parents who have erred as to what God would have them do in order to help their children which they have led astray. It is better to understand what we have done to create the situation where a child has rejected God and His church than to concentrate on the future when the sins of parents have not been understood or confessed to the child. When we sin, we need to remove the reproach we have brought upon God, His Word, and His church. It is most important we do this in regards to our children. There is a lesson on this in the sins of Peter when he denied Jesus. Why did Jesus reprove Peter in front of His disciples? It was not so that Jesus could change the kind of love He was asking about, but to allow Peter to be accepted by the disciples. They needed to see that Peter was truly transformed, he was truly repentant. This would allow him to work with the other apostles after they knew his repentance was not only honest, but accepted by Jesus.

Three times Peter had openly denied his Lord, and three times Jesus drew from him the assurance of his love and loyalty, pressing home that pointed question, like a barbed arrow to his wounded heart. Before the assembled disciples Jesus revealed the depth of Peter’s repentance, and showed how thoroughly humbled was the once boasting disciple. Peter was naturally forward and impulsive, and Satan had taken advantage of these characteristics to overthrow him. Just before the fall of Peter, Jesus had said to him, “Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat: but I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren.” Luke 22:31, 32. That time had now come, and the transformation in Peter was evident. The close, testing questions of the Lord had not called out one forward, self-sufficient reply; and because of his humiliation and repentance, Peter was better prepared than ever before to act as shepherd to the flock.  Desire of Ages, pg 812.

The same applies to parents if they will come to true repentance in regards to their mistakes with their children. We need to reveal the character of Christ to our children. They need to see we are erring humans in need of a Savior who forgives our sins if we will give the whole heart to Him.

Wednesday          May 22

Parenting as Disciple-Making

Read Genesis 18:18, 19 and 1 Samuel 3:10-14. Contrast these two fathers. What were the results of their parenting styles?

Parents have a responsibility to be the disciplemakers of their children, so they will become disciples of Jesus themselves. There are parents who believe that the way to teach and correct their children is by applying physical punishment—the more, the better (Prov. 22:15, 23:13, 29:15). Passages like these have been misused to abuse children and force them into total submission, but often that has also led to rebellion against their parents and God.

The Bible teaches parents to govern with kindness (Eph. 6:4, Col. 3:21) and to instruct children in righteousness (Ps. 78:5, Prov. 22:6, Isa. 38:19, Joel 1:3). As parents we ought to provide for our children (2 Cor. 12:14) and set a good example for them to follow (Gen. 18:19, Exod. 13:8, Titus 2:2). We are told to direct our households well (1 Tim. 3:4, 5, 12) and to discipline our children (Prov. 29:15, 17) while at the same time reflecting God’s love (Isa. 66:13, Ps. 103:13, Luke 11:11).

Amen! This is the truth. We ought not allow children to be disobedient. But, it is the love of the parents that causes children to obey them. Is this not the motivation for our obedience to God? At times it may be necessary to spank a child. If the children are taught to be obedient when young, it may be that one spanking is enough.

Sadly, the Bible reveals stories of parenting gone wrong. Isaac and Rebekah played favorites with their sons, Esau and Jacob (Gen. 25:28), and later Jacob displayed the same attitude toward Joseph (Gen. 37:3). Eli, even though he was a religious leader, failed to correct his children (1 Sam. 3:10-14). Samuel, who was also raised by Eli, turned out to be a very deficient father himself (1 Sam. 8:1-6). King David, by committing adultery and ordering a murder, taught his children who followed his example. King Manasseh sacrificed his children to demons (2 Kings 21:1- 9), as did King Ahaz (2 Kings 16:2-4).

Fortunately, however, we also find in the Scriptures some examples of good parenting. Mordecai was a wonderful adoptive father to Hadassah, Queen Esther (Esther 2:7), and Job prayed for his children regularly (Job 1:4, 5). In all of these examples, good and bad, we can glean lessons on parenting.

What can we learn from the examples of parenting that we see in the Bible? In what ways can we use some of these principles in our interactions with those who are not our children?

The Bible lesson ought to be learned by parents and their children. We cannot give to our children or others what we do not possess. If we are not truly converted Christians, then what are we teaching our children and others who know us? David was said to be a man after God's own heart. But, was he always, as some teach? No, not when separated from God. Sin reveals a separation from God. We must be abiding in Christ and filled with the Holy Spirit in order to do any good thing. We want more than anything else for our children to be converted and found in the kingdom of God. We have more influence with our children than does anyone else, at least when they are young. It is our privilege and responsibility to set a right example for them, that they would know there is a God in heaven and they would know of His character as it is revealed in the life of their parents. And, if another example is seen, then what will the children believe?

Tuesday        May 21

The Joy and Responsibility of Parenting

Read Psalm 127: "Except the Lord build the house, they labour in vain that build it: except the Lord keep the city, the watchman waketh but in vain. It is vain for you to rise up early, to sit up late, to eat the bread of sorrows: for so he giveth his beloved sleep. Lo, children are an heritage of the Lord: and the fruit of the womb is his reward. As arrows are in the hand of a mighty man; so are children of the youth. Happy is the man that hath his quiver full of them: they shall not be ashamed, but they shall speak with the enemies in the gate."

What is the basic message of this short psalm? What important principles should we take away from it for ourselves and how we live?

This psalm expresses the value God places on a well-ordered household whose purpose is honoring God. We need to be much more in prayer as to whether it is even God's will for us to get married, and if so, whether to have children. If God leads us in this direction, we need to be very intentional and prayerful about letting God guide in the choices made in character building, for by nature we are evil and we need the converting grace of God to renew the heart and mind to keep the flesh under by a continual and complete surrender to Christ. Only as families reveal the working of the divine nature by a living faith surrender to Christ will they reflect the pattern of Jesus' character, and thus be a blessing to the world and the onlooking universe. "A well-ordered Christian household is a powerful argument in favor of the reality of the Christian religion—an argument that the infidel cannot gainsay. All can see that there is an influence at work in the family that affects the children, and that the God of Abraham is with them. If the homes of professed Christians had a right religious mold, they would exert a mighty influence for good. They would indeed be the 'light of the world.' The God of heaven speaks to every faithful parent in the words addressed to Abraham: 'I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of the Lord, to do justice and judgment; that the Lord may bring upon Abraham that which He hath spoken of him.'" {Patriarchs and Prophets, page 144, paragraph 3}

When you wish to cook your favorite dish, you follow a recipe. If you add all the needed ingredients and follow all the steps, the majority of the time you get the desired results. Parenting, though, is not like cooking. No child is exactly like any other child, and even if you do everything just as you have done with other children, they can turn out different. This may have to do with their gender, the order in which they were born, their temperaments, or a host of other reasons. In God’s plan, parents would lead and teach their children to love and obey Him (Deut. 6:4-9, Ps. 78:5-7). The directive from God to parents is to “train up a child in the way he should go” (Prov. 22:6), not to hover over children to make sure they never make any wrong decisions.

Out of love, the parents, and especially the mother, will be much with the children to guide and educate them in how to form characters that honor God. The children want to please and help their parents, and if these childish impulses are directed in right lines, even little children can come to love purity, goodness and truth and shun evil because they learn to love their parents whose love is to reflect Jesus to them.

While we want to see our children go from cuddly, defenseless, little people to independent, successful adults, our ultimate responsibility is that they come to know, love, and serve Jesus Christ. As parents, we can follow the plan for the spiritual development of our children outlined in Deuteronomy 6. There are four important prerequisites: That we recognize “the LORD our God” (Deut. 6:4), that we love Him fully from the heart (Deut. 6:5), that we treasure His Word (Deut. 6:6), and that we share with our children what we know about Him (Deut. 6:20-23).
Deuteronomy 6 continues on to provide two important principles. First, the “teach-talk” principle (Deut. 6:7). Teaching refers to formal education, while talking refers to informal instruction. In both cases, the communication of biblical truth takes place within the setting of the parent-child relationship. Formal times of teaching can happen during family worship as we study God’s Word with them. Informal teaching arises spontaneously in the circumstances of day-to-day life and is even more important. Everyday incidents can become effective vehicles for communicating biblical truth (Gen. 18:19). The second is the “bind-write” principle (Deut. 6:8, 9). Spiritual truth must be bound up in our actions (“hand”) and attitudes (“head”), but it must also be inscribed in our private (“doorposts”) and public (“gates”) lives. It must move from our hearts into our homes and from our homes into the world.

Children learn to follow the teaching and example of their parents. If parents have failed to be Bible Christians, they need to be converted. We cannot give what we do not have. If our teaching or our instruction is not reflective of our actual experience, children are quick to note the inconsistency. Parents who train their children need to learn daily in the school of Christ, surrendering fully to Christ who alone can impute and impart His righteousness. Living by faith on Jesus, the parents will be living witnesses by union and communion with God, as every truly converted life will manifest all of the fruits of the Spirit without one missing. When children see that father and mother love Jesus supremely and their neighbor as themselves in a consistent and beautiful way, as the family lives out the gospel in their actual lives, the children come to associate living by faith with the highest joy, for when Jesus is reigning on the heart, "duty becomes a delight and sacrifice a pleasure" {Steps to Christ, page 59, paragraph 2}.
Monday          May 20

Single Parenting

One phenomenon the world faces is that of single parents, often but not always a woman as the single parent.

Sometimes we think of single parents as those who have conceived a child out of wedlock. However, that is not always the case. Hagar was pressured into having a child with Abraham, and then was forced to leave with her child (Gen. 16:3, 4; 21:17).

She failed in her responsibility to God and her child. She was not innocent in the matter that caused her to have to leave.    s"And Sarah saw the son of Hagar the Egyptian, which she had born unto Abraham, mocking." Genesis 21:9. At least she got to go with her child. It was God's will that they leave. He would make him the father of a great nation. And, it was Isaac that was the chosen one. It was the sin of Abraham and Sarai that led to this situation, but Hagar was not happy with the blessing going to Isaac.

Bathsheba became pregnant as a result of the sexual advance of a powerful man (2 Sam. 11:4, 5).

Why was she bathing where he could see her? And, was she a single parent? 

 Elijah was sent to a village called Zarephath to help a single mother who was a widow (1 Kings 17:9). By the time Jesus began His ministry, Joseph, His adoptive father, had died, leaving Mary a widow and a single parent. “Death had separated her from Joseph, who had shared her knowledge of the mystery of the birth of Jesus. Now there was no one to whom she could confide her hopes and fears. The past two months had been very sorrowful”. – Ellen G. White, The Desire of Ages, p. 145.

I guess then half of parents are single parents if we conclude we are single parents when our spouse dies no matter how old are our children. When Moses died at 120, that left his wife a single parent? Most of us consider single parents to be those who have the care for young children without a spouse.

Being a single parent is perhaps one of the most challenging jobs a person can have. Many face difficulties, such as managing their finances, dealing with the other parent, or simply having time just for themselves or to spend time with God, and wondering whether they will ever be loved again. Like with Hagar, God has a million ways we know nothing of to care for our children when we cannot. There is more than we can see. If we love God supremely, He will hear our prayers for our children. He will contend with Satan for their salvation. "Thus saith the LORD, Even the captives of the mighty shall be taken away, and the prey of the terrible shall be delivered: for I will contend with him that contendeth with thee, and I will save thy children. And I will feed them that oppress thee with their own flesh; and they shall be drunken with their own blood, as with sweet wine: and all flesh shall know that I the LORD [am] thy Saviour and thy Redeemer, the mighty One of Jacob." Isaiah 49:25,26.

Yes, single parents of young children are generally in need of much help. Many are single through divorce which is often more painful than if the spouse had died. The influence of an ungodly parent on a child is painful for the consecrated parent to consider. But, God is in absolute control. He is the ultimate caregiver for us all including children of a single parent.

What promises can anyone, including single parents, take from the following verses: Jer. 31:25; Matt. 11:28; Jer. 29:11; Jer. 32:27; Prov. 3:5, 6; Isa. 43: 1, 2.

We as a church have the responsibility to help single parents. James wrote, “Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, [and] to keep himself unspotted from the world.” James 1:27. One could add, in principle, “and single parents in their trouble, too”. The help we can offer does not have to just be financial. We could allow them to have some respite by taking their children for a little while so they can do other chores, rest, pray, and study God’s Word. We can serve as mentors to their children or help repair things around the house. We can be God’s hands in numerous ways to help support single parents.

Without passing judgment as to how they came to their situation, what specific things can you do to encourage and help single parents?
God does not remove guilt from parents because of their sins. We ought not either. Where there is guilt, then it ought to be confessed to Jesus, so the single parent can have peace amid the trials. The single parent needs to know God loves them and will be their shield and fortress IF the parent will surrender all to Christ. We do not pass judgment as to where a person will end up, or the motives of a person, but we can know sin. We can also lead Laodiceans to Christ. The best thing we can do for single parents is to be their friend and point them to Jesus. If we have opportunity to meet some of their physical needs, then we ought to. If we reveal to them that we love them, then they will appreciate our prayers and counsel.

Jesus met a sinner at the well. He revealed His love for her, but He also reproved her wrong understanding and revealed her sins. He did so in a manner that caused her to surrender her sinful heart and become an evangelist immediately. There is a lesson  there for us. Not being married, I imagine she had children since she had been married many times. If we love Jesus supremely, then do we not have the living water that Jesus gave to her? 

When Jesus sat down to rest at Jacob’s well, He had come from Judea, where His ministry had produced little fruit. He had been rejected by the priests and rabbis, and even the people who professed to be His disciples had failed of perceiving His divine character. He was faint and weary; yet He did not neglect the opportunity of speaking to one woman, though she was a stranger, an alien from Israel, and living in open sin. He knew all about her, so He knew she needed the medicine that all who are sick need. He gave her the water of life.

"This woman represents the working of a practical faith in Christ. Every true disciple is born into the kingdom of God as a missionary. He who drinks of the living water becomes a fountain of life. The receiver becomes a giver. The grace of Christ in the soul is like a spring in the desert, welling up to refresh all, and making those who are ready to perish eager to drink of the water of life."  Desire of Ages, pg 195.

Sunday         May 19

Childless Parenting

Read Genesis 18:11, 30:1, 1 Samuel 1:1-8, and Luke 1:7. What do these people have in common? How did God answer their longings?

Children are a blessing. But for some reason God doesn’t always bless everyone with children. Some hope and pray for a family, and God graciously grants their request, sometimes quite miraculously, as in the case of Sarah; others just as fervent in their petitions before God’s throne are met by deafening silence. Every time they see friends praise God for their pregnancies and when they welcome their babies, it deepens the depth of the wound as they consider their empty nest. Even such innocent questions as “How many children do you have?” serve as painful reminders of an exclusive club that those without children are excluded from, even though they may want to join.

Those who have gone through such an experience should come to accept that God understands their sorrow. The psalmist declares of God, “Thou tellest my wanderings: put thou my tears into thy bottle: [are they] not in thy book?” Ps. 56:8. Even though He seems silent, “Like as a father pitieth [his] children, [so] the LORD pitieth them that fear him.” Ps. 103:13.

Other people, meanwhile, for various reasons, might choose simply not to have children. One can understand in a world like ours so full of suffering, pain, evil, and potential calamity, why some might decide not to bring more people into it. In some cases, some people might choose to adopt children instead of having their own; that way they can raise children who are already here, often giving them a chance at a much better life than what they might have otherwise had.

Our world is a complicated place, and we are likely to meet all sorts of people in all sorts of situations in regard to having or not having children. In whatever situation we find ourselves regarding the question of children, we can live with the assurance of God’s love for us and His desire for our good end. At the same time, too, let’s always remember to be as sensitive as we can toward people who, for whatever reasons, do not have kids.

There ought to me more parents without children. It is no God's desire or responsibility for so many children that have come into the world who ought not have. So many parents are not capable of caring for children. So many lead their children away from God and His truth. So many do not feel their responsibility to their children nor to God for how they rear them. It is a very sad thing to see children in the care of those who care not, when others are deprived of children who care much for them.

Jesus never had any natural children of His own. What lessons, if any, are there for us in this fact?

We are all His children. He loves us more than we love our children. And, He hurts more for us, then we hurt for our children when things are not right. That we might care for our children as He cares for us!

Sabbath Afternoon

Read for This Week’s Study: Gen. 18:11; Jer. 31:25; Matt. 11:28; Psalm 127; Prov. 22:6; 1 Sam. 3:10-14; Phil. 3:13.

Memory Text: “Lo, children are an heritage of the LORD: and the fruit of the womb is his reward.” Psalm 127:3

Births are such a common, normal occurrence that often we don’t always fully appreciate the wonder that they are. Imagine what Eve must have felt holding baby Cain in her arms. The changes she experienced in her growing body during those months, the excruciating pain of childbirth, and then seeing this small child, so much like them, yet so defenseless. What an experience it must have been for Sarah, in her 90s and way past childbearing age, to contemplate upon the face of her own son, Isaac; she must have laughed every time she pronounced his name. After praying for a son for who knows how long, Hannah held Samuel and said, “For this child I prayed, and the LORD hath granted me my petition which I asked of Him” (1 Sam. 1:27). The wonder in Mary’s heart, still a young girl, cuddling her son, God’s Son, with a combination of amazement and fear.

At the same time, not everyone has the privilege, and responsibility, that comes with parenting. This week we will spend time exploring the season of parenting with its challenges, fears, satisfaction, and joy.

And responsibility to the child and to God? Many fail to understand how God looks at the parents responsibility for the flock He has allowed them to acquire. To every soul a trust is given. Of everyone the Chief Shepherd will demand, “Where is the flock that was given thee, thy beautiful flock?” And “what wilt thou say when He shall punish thee?” Jeremiah 13:20, 21. 

Study this week’s lesson to prepare for Sabbath, May 25.

The Desire of Ages / Re: The Desire of Ages--81--The Lord Is Risen
« Last post by Richard Myers on May 18, 2019, 09:15:20 AM »
Amen Pastor Sean and Sister Dorine. What a message God has given to us to take to a world soon to perish. He has given us "Living Water."  When we allow the Holy Spirit to take possession of the whole heart, He brings with Him the fruits of the Spirit, and not one is missing. This is indeed a reflection of the character of Christ. When do we reflect the fruits of the Spirit, after years of  being converted? No, at conversion, and as long as the heart is fully, wholly surrendered to Christ.

Why can we believe in Christ? Why can we surrender all we have and all we are to Christ? Because He is who said He was, God. His Word is true. We can trust Him completely. Those who reject the truth, those who reject Christ, will one day be as the soldiers who saw Him come  forth from the tomb.

  Christ came forth from the tomb glorified, and the Roman guard beheld Him. Their eyes were riveted upon the face of Him whom they had so recently mocked and derided. In this glorified Being they beheld the prisoner whom they had seen in the judgment hall, the one for whom they had plaited a crown of thorns. This was the One who had stood unresisting before Pilate and Herod, His form lacerated by the cruel scourge. This was He who had been nailed to the cross, at whom the priests and rulers, full of self-satisfaction, had wagged their heads, saying, "He saved others; Himself He cannot save." Matthew 27:42. This was He who had been laid in Joseph's new tomb. The decree of heaven had loosed the captive. Mountains piled upon mountains over His sepulcher could not have prevented Him from coming forth.

Many today reject the truth that there is a God who inspired the Bible. They mock those who believe not in evolution, but in the Bible. No matter how powerful they are today in this world, one day soon they will better understand who they have been fighting against. No matter how hard they try to pile lie upon lie, they cannot bury the truth. They will one day bow before Christ and confess Him Lord of all.
The Desire of Ages / Re: The Desire of Ages--81--The Lord Is Risen
« Last post by Dorine on May 18, 2019, 09:05:11 AM »
   "An earthquake marked the hour when Christ laid down His life, and another earthquake witnessed the moment when He took it up in triumph. He who had vanquished death and the grave came forth from the tomb with the tread of a conqueror, amid the reeling of the earth, the flashing of lightning, and the roaring of thunder. When He shall come to the earth again, He will shake "not the earth only, but also heaven." "The earth shall reel to and fro like a drunkard, and shall be removed like a cottage." "The heavens shall be rolled together as a scroll;" "the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up." But "the Lord will be the hope of His people, and the strength of the children of Israel." Hebrews 12:26; Isaiah 24:20; 34:4; 2 Peter 3:10; Joel 3:16."

The final shake up will be most dramatic. Jesus descending in all His power, majesty and glory to make an end to sin for evermore.  We are not there yet. There is still probationary time left for souls to accept the call of Jesus. The privilege and responsibility has been given to us but if we ourselves have not found Jesus how will we ever guide anyone else to Him. We may know the truth and be able to explain it in detail but if we do not have a love of the truth burning within our hearts our influence is dead.

Salvation must start in my own heart first. Then Jesus through the agency of the Holy Spirit is able to work through us to reveal to others the beauty of His character. I want to be that agent that is daily surrendered to Christ so that the influence seen in my life is not mine but His who is working in me. It's amazing to me how it works. The closer you come to Christ the more your own defects are revealed to yourself but to the on looker they see a change taking place where all the fruit of the Spirit is produced in the life. Now that is a miracle only God can perform.
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