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The Desire of Ages / Re: The Desire of Ages--33--Who Are My Brethren?
« Last post by Richard Myers on January 03, 2019, 10:53:08 AM »
What a precious truth, Sister Dorine. I have often said to myself that Jesus loves my children more than I do. If something were to happen to me, He is better able to care for them than me.

There are foundation truths that have been perverted. In today's reading we find the an important truth opened to our view.

    There were many in Christ's day, as there are today, over whom the control of Satan for the time seemed broken; through the grace of God they were set free from the evil spirits that had held dominion over the soul. They rejoiced in the love of God; but, like the stony-ground hearers of the parable, they did not abide in His love. They did not surrender themselves to God daily, that Christ might dwell in the heart; and when the evil spirit returned, with "seven other spirits more wicked than himself," they were wholly dominated by the power of evil.
     When the soul surrenders itself to Christ, a new power takes possession of the new heart. A change is wrought which man can never accomplish for himself. It is a supernatural work, bringing a supernatural element into human nature. The soul that is yielded to Christ becomes His own fortress, which He holds in a revolted world, and He intends that no authority shall be known in it but His own. A soul thus kept in possession by the heavenly agencies is impregnable to the assaults of Satan. But unless we do yield ourselves to the control of Christ, we shall be dominated by the wicked one. We must inevitably be under the control of the one or the other of the two great powers that are contending for the supremacy of the world. It is not necessary for us deliberately to choose the service of the kingdom of darkness in order to come under its dominion. We have only to neglect to ally ourselves with the kingdom of light. If we do not co-operate with the heavenly agencies, Satan will take possession of the heart, and will make it his abiding place. The only defense against evil is the indwelling of Christ in the heart through faith in His righteousness. Unless we become vitally connected with God, we can never resist the unhallowed effects of self-love, self-indulgence, and temptation to sin. We may leave off many bad habits, for the time we may part company with Satan; but without a vital connection with God, through the surrender of ourselves to Him moment by moment, we shall be overcome. Without a personal acquaintance with Christ, and a continual communion, we are at the mercy of the enemy, and shall do his bidding in the end. 


What is the bottom line of what we have just read? It is summed up here: "Unless we become vitally connected with God, we can never resist the unhallowed effects of self-love, self-indulgence, and temptation to sin. We may leave off many bad habits, for the time we may part company with Satan; but without a vital connection with God, through the surrender of ourselves to Him moment by moment, we shall be overcome. Without a personal acquaintance with Christ, and a continual communion, we are at the mercy of the enemy, and shall do his bidding in the end."

We are evil by nature when we come into the world. We must not only obtain a vital connection with Christ, we must keep that connection in order to have supernatural power to resist temptation to sin. It is by grace we are saved. God does not give us grace for tomorrow, only for today. That grace is more than a word, it is the power that transforms sinners into saints.....today. It is the greatest of all miracles.
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The Desire of Ages / Re: The Desire of Ages--33--Who Are My Brethren?
« Last post by Dorine on January 03, 2019, 07:55:29 AM »
Who is my brethren? Jesus says, “For whosoever shall do the will of My Father which is in heaven, the same is My brother, and sister, and mother." 

As the chapter points out Jesus’ own siblings would not be considered his brethren because of their abuse and rejection of Him.

“Those who accept Christ as their personal Saviour are not left as orphans, to bear the trials of life alone. He receives them as members of the heavenly family; He bids them call His Father their Father. They are His "little ones," dear to the heart of God, bound to Him by the most tender and abiding ties. He has toward them an exceeding tenderness, as far surpassing what our father or mother has felt toward us in our helplessness as the divine is above the human.

There are many today that stand alone in their families and are ridiculed and even persecuted because of their stand for God. How encouraging these words are to those who find themselves in this situation.
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The Desire of Ages / Re: The Desire of Ages--33--Who Are My Brethren?
« Last post by Pastor Sean Brizendine on January 03, 2019, 04:47:52 AM »
Amen, Beacon! Only with Christ abiding in our hearts are we enabled to walk and live securely in the midst of temptations without and within. Only by His grace and power can the heart be cleansed white as snow, and as long as Jesus lives in us, He will reveal Himself as we cooperate with Him in experiencing true-hearted obedience that reveals all of the fruits of the Spirit--not one of these precious attributes of His character will be missing!

"When the soul surrenders itself to Christ, a new power takes possession of the new heart. A change is wrought which man can never accomplish for himself. It is a supernatural work, bringing a supernatural element into human nature. The soul that is yielded to Christ becomes His own fortress, which He holds in a revolted world, and He intends that no authority shall be known in it but His own. A soul thus kept in possession by the heavenly agencies is impregnable to the assaults of Satan. But unless we do yield ourselves to the control of Christ, we shall be dominated by the wicked one. We must inevitably be under the control of the one or the other of the two great powers that are contending for the supremacy of the world. It is not necessary for us deliberately to choose the service of the kingdom of darkness in order to come under its dominion. We have only to neglect to ally ourselves with the kingdom of light. If we do not co-operate with the heavenly agencies, Satan will take possession of the heart, and will make it his abiding place. The only defense against evil is the indwelling of Christ in the heart through faith in His righteousness. Unless we become vitally connected with God, we can never resist the unhallowed effects of self-love, self-indulgence, and temptation to sin. We may leave off many bad habits, for the time we may part company with Satan; but without a vital connection with God, through the surrender of ourselves to Him moment by moment, we shall be overcome. Without a personal acquaintance with Christ, and a continual communion, we are at the mercy of the enemy, and shall do his bidding in the end." {The Desire of Ages, page 324, paragraph 1} 
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The Desire of Ages / Re: The Desire of Ages--33--Who Are My Brethren?
« Last post by Beacon on January 02, 2019, 08:19:41 PM »
"It is not God that blinds the eyes of men or hardens their hearts. He sends them light to correct their errors, and to lead them in safe paths; it is by the rejection of this light that the eyes are blinded and the heart hardened. Often the process is gradual, and almost imperceptible. Light comes to the soul through God’s word, through His servants, or by the direct agency of His Spirit; but when one ray of light is disregarded, there is a partial benumbing of the spiritual perceptions, and the second revealing of light is less clearly discerned. So the darkness increases, until it is night in the soul. Thus it had been with these Jewish leaders. They were convinced that a divine power attended Christ, but in order to resist the truth, they attributed the work of the Holy Spirit to Satan. In doing this they deliberately chose deception; they yielded themselves to Satan, and henceforth they were controlled by his power."  {DA 322.2)

Jesus says...."Come unto all ye who labor and are heavy laden and I will give you rest. "Matthew 11:28 As we come to Him in Faith and abide with Him day by day, as our Savior and Friend He draws us closer and closer , transforming us into His image, preparing us for service on this earth and in the world to come. Thus we honor His sacrifice on the cross of Calvary.

"With their short measuring line, (the brother's of Jesus), they could not fathom the mission which He came to fulfill, and therefore could not sympathize with Him in His trials. Their coarse, unappreciative words showed that they had no true perception of His character, and did not discern that the divine blended with the human. They often saw Him full of grief; but instead of comforting Him, their spirit and words only wounded His heart. His sensitive nature was tortured. ( DA 326 )

The choice is ours to make....Do we want to torture Jesus by our rejection of Him as demonstrated in our...Lives - Our Actions - Our Words  or will our lives show by our lifestyle that we have come under the influence of the Divine Love of Jesus having been drawn by His love, His sacrifice, His promise of Eternal Life with Him ?  A friend of mine once wrote these words in my autograph book.....

"Your life lies before you like a field of pure white snow -- be careful how you step on it--for every step will show. "      May our song ever be:  All to Jesus I surrender - All to Him I freely Give - Amen.
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Tuesday        January 1

The Symbolic Language of Revelation


Read Revelation 13:1, Daniel 7:1-3, and Ezekiel 1:1-14. What is the one thing that all these visions have in common?

Revelation 1:1 further states: “And He sent and signified it by His angel to His servant John” (NKJV, emphasis added). Here we find a very important word in the book. The word “signified” is a translation of the Greek word semaino, meaning “to show by symbolic signs”. This word is used in the Greek translation of the Old Testament (the Septuagint), in which Daniel explained to King Nebuchadnezzar that, by the statue made of gold, silver, bronze, and iron, God signifies to the king “what will take place in the future” (Dan. 2:45, NASB). By employing the same word, John tells us that the scenes and events of Revelation were shown to him in vision in symbolic presentations. Guided by the Holy Spirit, John faithfully recorded these symbolic presentations as he had seen them in the visions (Rev. 1:2).

Thus, for the most part, the language used to describe Revelation’s prophecies must not be interpreted literally. As a rule, the reading of the Bible, in general, presupposes a literal understanding of the text (unless the text points to intended symbolism). But when we read Revelation - unless the text points to a literal meaning - we need to interpret it symbolically. While the scenes and events predicted are real, they usually were expressed in symbolic language.

Keeping in mind the largely symbolic character of Revelation will safeguard us against distorting the prophetic message. In trying to determine the meaning of the symbols used in the book, we must be careful not to impose on the text a meaning that comes out of human imagination or the current meanings of those symbols in our culture. Instead, we must go to the Bible and to the symbols found in its pages in order to understand the symbols in the book of Revelation.

In fact, in trying to unlock the meaning of those symbols in Revelation, we must remember that most of them were drawn from the Old Testament. By portraying the future in the language of the past, God wanted to impress upon our minds that His acts of salvation in the future will be very much like His acts of salvation in the past. What He did for His people in the past, He will do for them again in the future. In endeavoring to decode the symbols and images of Revelation, we must start by paying attention to the Old Testament.

Amen. If we are ignorant of the Old Testament, then we cannot understand the Book of Revelation. And, if we do not understand the Book of Daniel, then we will not be able to rightly understand the Book of Revelation. They are one Book speaking of the same things. Until recently, the Book of Revelation could not be completely understood because the Book of Daniel was a closed Book until the "time of the end" when it was unsealed.

One more thought on the prophecies in the two Books. If one does not know some world history, it will also be impossible to understand portions of both Books. We may be very good Bible students, but that is not enough to interpret accurately all of the prophecies in the Books of Revelation and Daniel.
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Monday         December 31

The Purpose of the Book


Revelation 1:1 also tells us that the purpose of the book is to show future events, starting from the time when the book itself was written. Anyone familiar with Revelation will notice that the prediction of events - whether those already fulfilled (at least from our perspective today) or those events still future (again, from our perspective today) - occupies most of the book’s content.

The primary purpose of biblical prophecies is to assure us that no matter what the future brings, God is in control. Revelation does just that: it assures us that Jesus Christ is with His people throughout this world’s history and its alarming final events.

Consequently, Revelation’s prophecies have two practical purposes: to teach us how to live today and to prepare us for the future.

Read Deuteronomy 29:29.

   The secret [things belong] unto the LORD our God: but those [things which are] revealed [belong] unto us and to our children for ever, that [we] may do all the words of this law. 


How does this text help us understand why some things are not revealed to us? According to this text, what is the purpose of the things that are revealed to us? That is, why are we told them? See also Rev. 22:7.

Revelation’s end-time prophecies are not revealed to satisfy our obsessive curiosity about the future. The book reveals only those aspects of the future important for us to know. They are disclosed to impress upon us the seriousness of what will happen so that we will realize our dependence on God and, in that dependence, obey Him.

For centuries, speculation - and even more sensationalism - has accompanied so much of the teaching regarding end-time events. Fortunes have been made by those who, predicting the immediate end, have scared people into giving money to their ministry because, well, the end was near. Each time, though, the end didn’t come, and people were left disillusioned and discouraged. As with all the good things God has given us, prophecy can be misused, and misinterpreted, as well.

Read John 14:29.

And now I have told you before it come to pass, that, when it is come to pass, ye might believe. 


Believe what? Believe God and His Word. Who else can tell the future perfectly all the time. Easy to understand, but why then so many who reject Bible truth when this evidence is set before them?


What crucially important principle for the purpose of prophecy can we find here in this verse?

One purpose of prophecy is to reveal the all knowing ability of God. He does know the end from the beginning. How sad that so many argue against Bible truth and the Author of the Bible. But, it is left to us to make that decision for ourselves. Even the devils believe. They are not that stupid to not believe there is a God.
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Sunday         December 30

The Title of the Book


Read Revelation 1:1-2.

1:1   The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave unto him, to show unto his servants things which must shortly come to pass; and he sent and signified [it] by his angel unto his servant John: 
 1:2   Who bare record of the word of God, and of the testimony of Jesus Christ, and of all things that he saw. 


What is the significance of the full title of the book? What does the title teach us in terms of whom the book is really about?

Revelation 1:1 states the title of the book as “The Revelation of Jesus Christ”. The word “revelation” comes from the Greek word apokalupsis (apocalypse), which means “uncovering” or “unveiling”. The Apocalypse is an unveiling of Jesus Christ; it is both from Jesus and about Him. While it came from God through Jesus Christ (Rev. 22:16), the book testifies that Jesus also is the focus of its contents. The Apocalypse is His self-revelation to His people and an expression of His care for them.

Jesus is the central figure of Revelation. The book begins with Him (Rev. 1:5-8) and concludes with Him (Rev. 22:12-16). “Let Daniel speak, let the Revelation speak, and tell what is truth. But whatever phase of the subject is presented, uplift Jesus as the center of all hope, ‘the Root and the Offspring of David, and the bright and morning Star’”. - Ellen G. White, Testimonies to Ministers and Gospel Workers, p. 118.

Also, the Jesus of the Apocalypse is the Jesus of the four Gospels. Revelation continues the description of Jesus and His work of salvation on behalf of His people as first depicted in the Gospels. The book of Revelation focuses on different aspects of His existence and ministry. Essentially, it begins where the Gospels end, with Jesus’ resurrection and ascension into heaven.

Together with the Epistle to the Hebrews, Revelation emphasizes Jesus’ heavenly ministry. It shows that, after His ascension, Jesus was inaugurated into His royal and priestly ministry in the heavenly sanctuary. Without Revelation or Hebrews, our knowledge of Christ’s high priestly ministry in heaven in behalf of His people would be very limited. And yet, besides Hebrews, the book of Revelation provides us with a unique look into the ministry of Jesus Christ in our behalf.

Read John 14:1-3.

 14:1   Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. 
 14:2   In my Father's house are many mansions: if [it were] not [so], I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. 
 14:3   And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, [there] ye may be also. 


 How does the very broad promise here help us better understand what Jesus is doing for us in heaven right now? What hope can we draw from this wonderful promise?

This is a good foundation upon which to study the Book of Revelation. God is love. He loves us and gave His Son for us. Not all will accept this grace, and thus the Book will reveal more than love. But, let us begin with this wonderful truth, that God has been and is working for our salvation.

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Sabbath Afternoon

Read for This Week’s Study: Rev. 1:1-8; John 14:1-3; Deut. 29:29; John 14:29; Rom. 1:7; Phil. 3:20; Dan. 7:13-14.

Memory Text: “Blessed [is] he that readeth, and they that hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written therein: for the time [is] at hand.” Revelation 1:3

The prophecies of Revelation were revealed in vision to the apostle John more than nineteen centuries ago during his exile on a small rocky island known as Patmos in the Aegean Sea (Rev. 1:9). Revelation 1:3 pronounces a blessing on those who read the book and hear and obey the teachings (compare Luke 6:47-48). This verse refers to the congregation assembled in the church to hear the messages. However, they are blessed not only because they read or listen, but also because they obey the words of the book (Rev. 22:7).

The prophecies of Revelation are an expression of God’s care for His people. They point us to the shortness and fragility of this life, to salvation in Jesus, and His work as our heavenly High Priest and King, to our calling to spread the gospel.

Biblical prophecies are like a lamp shining in a dark place (2 Pet. 1:19). They are intended to provide guidance for our life today and hope for our future. We will need this prophetic guide until the coming of Christ and the establishment of God’s everlasting kingdom.

Amen!  When prophecies are fulfilled, they then build our faith in Scripture since only God can tell the future. The Bible is the infallible Word of God. When we see that the prophecies do not fail, that God is who He says He is. The Book of Revelation not only tells us what is happening around us today, what is going to soon transpire, but it also reveals what has happened in the past. Some of that past history was prophesied many years before it occurred. There is a God in heaven who knows the end from the beginning. Revelation will inspire faith and love for our God and His Word and if the counsel given is followed, will prepare us for the soon coming of Jesus.
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Amen, Wally.  Satan is indeed busy perverting the truths found in the Book of Revelation. How important is the Book? As the lesson points out, it reveals what our Savior is doing today to put an end to sin and prepare a people to receive Him at His soon coming. The last message of warning to be given to the world is found in the Book of Revelation.

We ought to understand that the Book of Daniel and the Book of Revelation is really one Book. They are that closely aligned. As we study this quarter, let us do so prayerfully with a desire to better understand the truths entrusted to us at this most important time. If we had better understood these two Books, and walked in the light given, we would have seen the appearing of our Savior already.
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The Desire of Ages / Re: The Desire of Ages--32--The Centurion
« Last post by Richard Myers on January 02, 2019, 12:17:17 PM »
Amen, Dorine, Beacon, and Pastor Sean! We see our continual need of a Savior, and we have learned that He is well able to save us from ourselves. It is interesting and sad that the Jews who were God's chosen people and who had been entrusted with the truth, did not appreciate the truth and thus were blind to who Jesus was, their Messiah, God in the flesh. But, the Centurion who had not  been so blessed recognized Jesus as Lord and Savior. How can this be? It is present truth for us today.

    The Jews had been instructed from childhood concerning the work of the Messiah. The inspired utterances of patriarchs and prophets and the symbolic teaching of the sacrificial service had been theirs. But they had disregarded the light; and now they saw in Jesus nothing to be desired. But the centurion, born in heathenism, educated in the idolatry of imperial Rome, trained as a soldier, seemingly cut off from spiritual life by his education and surroundings, and still further shut out by the bigotry of the Jews, and by the contempt of his own countrymen for the people of Israel,--this man perceived the truth to which the children of Abraham were blinded. He did not wait to see whether the Jews themselves would receive the One who claimed to be their Messiah. As the "light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world" (John 1:9) had shone upon him, he had, though afar off, discerned the glory of the Son of God. 

Do we appreciate and thus walk in the light of God's love and glory? If not, then are we not following in the path of the Jews? Do we pick and choose which truths we will follow, and ignore others? We have been entrusted with light in all areas of life. What a blessing! But, how do our institutions react to this light? Our hospitals, schools, publishing institutions, and even our churches? Are we as a people walking in the light God has so graciously given to us?

Today will in large measure determine what we will be doing tomorrow. Are we seeking Christ and to do His will, or are we ignoring truth that is not so welcome? Today's decision to follow Christ or not will help or hinder us in what we will do tomorrow.
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