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Wally

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Lesson 8 November 14-20




Education and Redemption






Commentary in Navy                  Inspiration in Maroon









So likewise ye, when ye shall have done all those things which are commanded you, say, We are unprofitable servants:  we have done that which was our duty to do.  Luke 17:10

Richard Myers

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Re: SDA Sabbath School Lesson 8--4th Quarter 2020--Education and Redemption
« Reply #1 on: November 13, 2020, 06:19:35 PM »
Sabbath Afternoon

Read for This Week’s Study: Gen. 1:26, 27; Isa. 11:1-9; 2 Tim. 3:14-17; 1 Kings 4:29-34; John 14:17; 1 Cor. 2:1-16.

Memory Text: “All scripture [is] given by inspiration of God, and [is] profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness.” 2 Timothy 3:16

The Bible tells a long story about God and His people. Sometimes it is viewed as a love story gone awry, at least temporarily. Or it can be seen as a story of a father and His rebellious children who, eventually, come around.

But for the purposes of this week’s teaching, we will discover in the Bible story another theme, namely, that of a teacher and his students. They keep failing their tests, but he patiently explains their lessons again and again, until, at last, some learn it.

That is pretty close, but better to present the whole truth. God so loves this sinful world that He allowed His innocent Son to come to this dark spot in the universe a helpless  baby, subject to the weakness of humanity to fight the battle of life as we must fight it at the risk of failure and eternal loss. And in response to this call to sinners, only a very few accept His offer of eternal life in a world without sin. "Many are called, but few are chosen."  Matthew 22:14. Why? Because few choose to give up all for Christ. Pride will not give in, so very few will enter the kingdom of heaven compared to the ones who were given the opportunity. The gate is very narrow and the path is steep, but all who desire and look to Jesus will make it.


The Bible story is not unlike our own human stories that we know so well – with one exception. The story of God and His people is assured of a good ending, of reaching its goal. Divine grace toward His people assures that outcome.

How so?  There is no assurance of salvation of those who called His people. Because we are Seventh-day Adventists and pay tithe assures no one of a good ending. A good ending is promised, but not because one is part of His people. There are conditions to be met before there will be a "good ending." Let's look at history for support of what I am saying. Did God have a people in ancient times? Yes, Israel was His people. From Psalm 81:


 81:10   I [am] the LORD thy God, which brought thee out of the land of Egypt: open thy mouth wide, and I will fill it. 
 81:11   But my people would not hearken to my voice; and Israel would none of me. 
 81:12   So I gave them up unto their own hearts' lust: [and] they walked in their own counsels. 
 81:13   Oh that my people had hearkened unto me, [and] Israel had walked in my ways! 


Did God's people have a "good ending?"  No, they put to death their Messiah, God's Son.  God cut off His people Israel. Only those who loved God supremely had a good ending, and even so many of them will inherit eternal life, but their life on this dark spot was not such a good ending. So, how are we to look at a "good ending?"  There are conditions to a good ending. Not all in this world will have a good ending. Not all who profess to love God and serve Him will have a good ending, even if they are in His church and are called "His people."

The assurance of salvation has conditions, or else all would be saved by God's grace. If we are not transformed in character, if we do not possess all of the fruits of the Spirit, then we are none of His even if we were in the nation of Israel or if we are in His church today. If we have not His Spirit we are none of His.   "But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of His." Romans 8:9.

What are the conditions for having the assurance of salvation? We must love the Lord they God with all of the heart. If we do not then we will not be saved. If we love God supremely, then we will keep His commandments. When we sin, we do not have the Holy Spirit dwelling in the heart, thus we will not have any of the fruits of the Spirit, and thus are none of His.


The human responsibility in this relationship has often been misunderstood and even dreaded by many who have thought of it as onerous.

What is the human responsibility?  How is it that we can worship God in the beauty of holiness? What is our part? Does God do it all, some preach it that way. But, that is a false narrative. God does not do it all, else the whole world would be saved. We have a very small part to play compared to God's part which is immeasurably large. But, without our effort, we shall be eternally lost. What is our part?


But in fact, the Bible story is essentially an invitation to know God and understand His will.

Pretty close. We are to accept His invitation to learn of Him and understand His ways, and to surrender all to Him. He gives to us time to do this, it is called a period of probation. If we accept the invitation to learn of Him, and them love Him more than anything else, we will obey Him in all we know.


Indeed, learning to know God is our foremost response to His grace.

Our response to God's grace is surrender, conversion, obedience. What then prompts our learning of Him. What does the Bible say? Faith cometh by hearing. Why would anyone before conversion spend time studying the Bible? If you were told you were going to burn for eternity if you did not surrender all to God, why would you want to learn about God? What does Jude say? "And of some have compassion, making a difference: And others save with fear, pulling [them] out of the fire; hating even the garment spotted by the flesh. Now unto him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present [you] faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy ." Jude 1:22-24.

It may be that some will be saved through fear. Well, we know that we can be saved by grace, so why does Bible say save some through fear? Because some will not study the Bible to know God except to save themselves from judgment. So, it is not always grace that causes us to learn of God. Grace is the reason why I read Desire of Ages for my devotions every day. I want to spend time with Jesus, I want to know Him better. But, that is not always the case. Some will do so because Jesus said to eat His flesh and drink His blood without responding to grace. When we study the Bible it reveals God's grace and thus we are drawn to Him, to love Him and to surrender all. This is the dominion of grace. It is the power that transforms sinners into saint. We see this grace when we study the Bible to know Jesus.


We cannot earn such grace, but we can learn it, and what is Christian education if not, at its core, education teaching us about this grace?

Yes, the purpose of education is to lead the student to Jesus. To present the loveliness of Christ. But, we ought never separate God's grace from judgment. Satan does this very successfully. At the cross justice met grace, neither were done away with.


Study this week’s lesson to prepare for Sabbath, November 21.
Jesus receives His reward when we reflect His character, the fruits of the Spirit......We deny Jesus His reward when we do not.

Richard Myers

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Re: SDA Sabbath School Lesson 8--4th Quarter 2020--Education and Redemption
« Reply #2 on: November 13, 2020, 07:18:22 PM »
Sunday         November 15

In the Image of God


Read Genesis 1:26, 27 and Genesis 5:1, 3. What do these texts teach about how God originally created humanity and then what happened to humanity after sin?

The phrase “the image of God” has captivated interpreters of the Bible for centuries. What is this image in which the first humans were created? For example, does it mean that God looked in a mirror and formed His new creation to look like Himself? Or does it mean that humans are more like God than all other forms of life are? Or does it refer to a spiritual and intellectual similarity and compatibility between the Creator and His human creation? The Scriptures do not give any precise explanation of this expression even though scholars have derived from Scripture many interpretations of what it could mean. However, we can see that, after sin, this image had been changed, which is why Ellen G. White wrote that the goal of education is to restore in man the image of his maker (Education, pp. 14-16).

Let's look another statement that will help us expand this thought: Our Lord Jesus Christ came to this world as the unwearied servant of man’s necessity. He “took our infirmities, and bare our sicknesses,” that He might minister to every need of humanity. Matthew 8:17. The burden of disease and wretchedness and sin He came to remove. It was His mission to bring to men complete restoration; He came to give them health and peace and perfection of character.  Ministry of Healing, pg 17.

Jesus came to this dark spot in the universe "to bring to men complete restoration; He came to give them (us) health and peace and perfection of character." We never hear about this, why not? Because it is foreign to many of our teachers. Thus, the church is not seeing the truth about the work of Jesus, not seeing the conditions in order to have salvation. Perfection of character comes when we give Jesus the whole heart a full surrender of our will to His. There is perfection at each stage of development. First the blade, then the ear, then the full corn in the ear, perfect at each stage. The question remains as to how we can come to the point of perfection of character and the beauty of holiness?


How can education achieve such a remarkable goal?

Remarkable indeed when we realize that a sinner can be transformed into a saint by God's grace. But, again, how?


First, we need to remember that God made us to have a relationship with Him, somewhat as parents do with their children. He made us in His image, the same way human parents have children in their image (Gen. 5:1), so that He can bring us up to be His children, who belong to His family; He can communicate with us and form a lasting relationship with us. The image of God therefore is more of a “mental image” that enables two beings, one divine and the other human, to have a meeting of minds.

The image of God is His character that He will give to us if we will meet the conditions. Let us learn how it is that we can be transformed (converted) into His image. It is by beholding Him, by learning of Him, by spending a thoughtful hour a day contemplating the life of Christ, especially the closing scenes that reveal His towards us.  "But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, [even] as by the Spirit of the Lord." 2 Cor. 3:18. His glory is His character, His image is His character. And how do we obtain His character? By beholding His glory, His character. And, now we know what we must do in order to die to self daily! This is how we achieve beauty of holiness which is our Lord and Savior. We must see and receive His grace into our hearts.


This is precisely what happens in education, first at home between parents and children, and later at school when teachers take over the work of education.

First of all, the spiritual conditions is mostly to be done in the home, not the school, nor the church. They are to help the parents, not supplant them. This is especially important in our day when many of the schools and many of the churches are leading the children in the wrong direction. This is why many of our young people are leaving the church and Christ.


Evidently God intended this process of education we know so well when, distinguishing us from many other life forms, He made us in His own image – He did it so that He can teach us and we can learn from Him, until His image (His mind) is reflected in ours.

Adam did not have to learn of God to be made in His image, He was already holy. He already reflected the character of God. We must be transformed in nature by becoming partakers in God's divine nature (2 Peter 1:4).


The story of redemption is a story of education from creation to incarnation, and from incarnation to re-creation. God is a teacher, and heaven is a school for all time (see Ellen G. White, Education, p. 301). What are the implications of this thought for our commitment to Christian education at home, in church, in school, in the university, and throughout life?

Our responsibility as church members is to make sure that our churches and schools are led by converted teachers. If we are not successful then parents need to remove their children from these schools and if the churches level of piety is very low, then remove them from the churches until there is revival and reformation. It is coming very soon. There is a "shaking" coming.

Jesus receives His reward when we reflect His character, the fruits of the Spirit......We deny Jesus His reward when we do not.

Richard Myers

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Re: SDA Sabbath School Lesson 8--4th Quarter 2020--Education and Redemption
« Reply #3 on: November 13, 2020, 07:42:58 PM »
Monday         November 16

Jesus as Teacher


The Bible uses many terms to describe Jesus. He is the Son of God, the Messiah, the Son of man, the Savior, the Redeemer, the Lord, the Lamb of God, just to mention a few. But to those people who knew Him best during His three-plus years of public ministry in Judea and Galilee, He was a teacher. They called Him “Master,” or “Rabbi.” Both mean the same thing, namely, “Teacher.”

Therefore, the teaching profession and the work of teaching must have been a particularly suitable way for Jesus to carry out His public ministry. Somehow His work of redemption is akin to the work of teaching. What is more, it was foretold by the gospel prophet.

Jesus spent more time healing than preaching. Why?


Read Isaiah 11:1-9.

 11:1   And there shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse, and a Branch shall grow out of his roots: 
 11:2   And the spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the LORD; 
 11:3   And shall make him of quick understanding in the fear of the LORD: and he shall not judge after the sight of his eyes, neither reprove after the hearing of his ears: 
 11:4   But with righteousness shall he judge the poor, and reprove with equity for the meek of the earth: and he shall smite the earth with the rod of his mouth, and with the breath of his lips shall he slay the wicked. 
 11:5   And righteousness shall be the girdle of his loins, and faithfulness the girdle of his reins. 
 11:6   The wolf also shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid; and the calf and the young lion and the fatling together; and a little child shall lead them. 
 11:7   And the cow and the bear shall feed; their young ones shall lie down together: and the lion shall eat straw like the ox. 
 11:8   And the sucking child shall play on the hole of the asp, and the weaned child shall put his hand on the cockatrice' den. 
 11:9   They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain: for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the LORD, as the waters cover the sea. 


What does it reveal about the teaching role of Jesus?

One of the most startling messianic prophecies in the Scriptures is found in Isaiah 11. Verses 1-3 portray the coming Messiah in educational terms, someone who brings knowledge, counsel, wisdom, and understanding. The whole passage concludes with this remarkable promise: “The earth shall be full of the knowledge of the LORD, as the waters cover the sea” (Isa. 11:9). Perhaps it was such teachings of Scripture that inspired Ellen G. White in her book on education to note that the work of education and the work of redemption are one (see Education, p. 30).

Yes, they are to be one and the same. The teacher sent of God must be discerned from the teacher not sent of God. How are we to tell the difference? The teacher sent from God points all to Christ and to His Word, not the wisdom of man. In order to teach then, the teacher must be converted possessing of the fruits of the Spirit, not one missing. How can they give to others what they do not possess? Just like pastors, they are to lead the students to Christ, to give them living waters.


Read John 3:1-3.

Amen!! So very important that we understand the process of conversion, what it is and how it happens. Jesus tells Nicodemus both.


 3:1   There was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews: 
 3:2   The same came to Jesus by night, and said unto him, Rabbi, we know that thou art a teacher come from God: for no man can do these miracles that thou doest, except God be with him. 
 3:3   Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God. 


Nicodemus addressed Jesus as a rabbi, and he further identified Jesus’ teaching gifts as coming from God because of the signs Jesus performed, namely, His miracles and insights into the meaning of life. Jesus accepted, if not the title given Him, then surely the origin of His teaching gifts when He responded to Nicodemus that he must be born again to see (understand, as well as enter) the kingdom of God. This means that the authority to teach others, even in the case of Jesus, comes from God.

No, Jesus did not accept the title of rabbi that Nicodemus gave Him. Jesus did not want Nicodemus to think the teaching came from the God in heaven. Nicodemus did not acknowledge Jesus as God, but only as a teacher sent from God.


Surely teaching is a gift of God. It is commissioned by God, it was adopted by Jesus, and it is recognized by those who are taught as having divine authority.

Teaching truth is important. It is the responsibility of all who are converted. But, not all teaching comes from God, much comes directly from below leading people away from the truth. There are teachers dressed as lambs but are ravening wolves.


What role do we have in seeing the fulfillment of this prophecy about the knowledge of the Lord going all over the world?

We are to give the last message of warning to a world soon to perish. Why has Jesus not come? What is causing the delay? False teachers. If the true gospel had been taken to the world, Jesus would have come. He cannot come until He has a people who will cease to sin. When the heavenly sanctuary closes, there will be no more sins forgiven. Then the living saints will go through a time of trouble such as never was without a Mediator. He does not yet have a church that has ceased sinning who can live without a Mediator. Jesus waits. He is waiting for converted teachers to learn and then teach the truth. "He that is unjust, let him be unjust still: and he which is filthy, let him be filthy still: and he that is righteous, let him be righteous still: and he that is holy, let him be holy still." Rev. 22:11. Teacht it teachers!

Jesus receives His reward when we reflect His character, the fruits of the Spirit......We deny Jesus His reward when we do not.

Richard Myers

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Re: SDA Sabbath School Lesson 8--4th Quarter 2020--Education and Redemption
« Reply #4 on: November 15, 2020, 10:10:00 PM »
Tuesday         November 17

Moses and the Prophets


Read 2 Timothy 3:14-17. What do these texts teach us about the role of Scripture in Christian education?

The word for the first part of the Bible, the Torah, is sometimes translated as “the Law,” partly because there are many laws in these books. But Torah really means “teaching” or “instruction.” This understanding is very different from what many think the “law” in the Bible is about, namely, rules and regulations that we have to follow to remain in God’s good graces. Not so; the law is intended as teaching material dealing with how to live life successfully and safely in the covenant relationship God intended when He created us in the first place.

No, that is not so. The law is how we are to live life. It is a transcript of God's character. It is a law of love as to how we are to live towards God, the first four commandments, and towards man, the last six commandments. And there are other commands called statutes and judgments that teach us how to act towards God and man. The law is not a dirty word unless one does not want to walk in the law God has given.
 

The next two sections of the Hebrew Bible, the prophets, report on how well God’s people mastered this educational material and lived by it (the former prophets, or historical books), and what they ought to have learned from this educational material (the latter prophets). The remaining part of the Old Testament (called the “writings” in Hebrew) is full of examples of successful and less-successful teachers and students along with their educational experiences. Examples of educational success in these books would be Esther, Ruth, Daniel, and Job. Among the failures would be Job’s four friends. Of course, the book of Psalms is a hymnbook, but even it has at least three educational psalms: Psalm 1, Psalm 37, and Psalm 73.

The whole Bible is a revelation of God and His ways. It is all to be instructive. We learn from the history of the past and all of the laws and statutes written.


The Gospels abound with materials intended for educational purposes, especially in the parables of Jesus. Many of Paul’s letters begin with a strong gospel proclamation, but end with educational material, practical lessons about daily life for Christians. The book of Revelation is full of educational material. For example, the whole disclosure, or unrolling of the future of Christ’s church, is revealed in a book that only the Lamb of God – Jesus, the Master Teacher – can open (Rev. 5:1-5).

Some may say that not all the teaching material in the books of Moses applies in our time, and that is correct. Deuteronomy 17:14-20, the instruction regarding kings, has some very explicit instructions about the selection of someone to hold the royal office. Today, of course, we do not appoint any kings in our church. How do we determine the proper application of all this teaching material in Scripture for our time?

The Bible tells us Israel is an ensample for those whom the ends of the world is come. That is us. We are to learn from their failure. We don't seem to be doing that. We are following their failures. But, that will end soon as revival and reformation is coming. God has promised to pour out water upon His church to cleans us from our filthiness and idols (Ezekiel 36:22-37.)


Jesus receives His reward when we reflect His character, the fruits of the Spirit......We deny Jesus His reward when we do not.

Richard Myers

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Re: SDA Sabbath School Lesson 8--4th Quarter 2020--Education and Redemption
« Reply #5 on: November 16, 2020, 08:15:16 AM »
Wednesday         November 18

Wise Men and Women


The words for school, study, and education are clearly understood in our time, but they are not common in the Bible. There is one word, wisdom/wise, which is much more common. For example, the Old Testament makes mention of wise men and women (2 Sam. 14:2, Prov. 16:23).

Read 1 Kings 4:29-34. What does this teach us about the importance of wisdom?

King Solomon is singled out as a very wise man who spoke about animal and plant life and uttered proverbs with great wisdom, meaning as a man of education (1 Kings 4:29-34). The books of Proverbs and Ecclesiastes contain many wise teachings on numerous subjects, attributed to Solomon as well as to other wise teachers in ancient times (Prov. 1:1, Prov. 25:1, Prov. 30:1, Prov. 31:1).

According to the Bible, wisdom is very much like our education today.

No, it is not. If the education of today was in harmony with Scripture, then that would be so, but it is not. What is called "higher education" today is very much anti Christ. The "ivy league" schools many of which we religious institutions when created will not allow creation to be taught in them. They are hotbeds of evil. And, so it is in many of our schools of "higher education." If our schools were teaching wisdom then we would not be losing our young people to Satan.

Those who have received a false education do not look heavenward. They cannot see the One who is the true Light, “which lighteth every man that cometh into the world.” They look upon eternal realities as phantoms, calling an atom a world, and a world an atom. Of many who have received the so-called higher education, God declares, “Thou art weighed in the balances, and art found wanting,”—wanting in a knowledge of practical business, wanting in a knowledge of how to make the best use of time, wanting in a knowledge of how to labor for Jesus.

The practical nature of the teaching of Him who gave His life to save men is an evidence of the value He places upon men. He gave the education which alone can be called the higher education. He did not turn His disciples away because they had not received their instruction from pagan and infidel teachers. These disciples were to proclaim truth that was to shake the world, but before they could do this, before they could be the salt of the earth, they must form new habits, they must unlearn many things learned from priest and rabbi. And today those who would represent Christ must form new habits. Theories which originate with the world must be given up. Their words and their works must be after the divine similitude. They must not place themselves in connection with the debasing principles and sentiments that belong to the worship of other gods. They cannot with safety receive their education from those who know not God, and acknowledge Him not as the life and light of men. These men belong to another kingdom. They are ruled by a disloyal prince, and they mistake phantoms for realities.
 
Our schools are not what they should be. The time which should be devoted to laboring for Christ is exhausted on unworthy themes and self-pleasing. Controversy arises in a moment if once-stated opinions are crossed. So it was with the Jews. To vindicate personal opinion and petty interests, to gratify worldly ambition, they rejected the Son of God. Time is passing. We are nearing the great crisis of this earth’s history. If teachers continue to close their eyes to the necessities of the time in which we are living, they should be disconnected from the work.The Review and Herald, August 17, 1897.


Praise God for the teachers who are truly converted and teaching the wisdom of a true gospel with power to transform sinners into saints. Jesus has not come because there is not a church that has ceased to sin. God cannot say let Him who is holy be holy still when He then has finished His work of cleansing the heavenly sanctuary. Why? Because this is not being taught in our schools.


It is something one learns from parents and teachers, especially while young (Eccles. 12:1), but actually a person accumulates wisdom all through life. Second, wisdom generally has a practical side to it; for example, learn from the ants that save in the summer in order to have enough for the winter (Prov. 6:6-8).

Amen!  Both parents and teachers to a great degree have failed to impart wisdom to their children and students.


Yet wisdom is not only practical; it also has a theoretical side to it, for it begins with faith in God and follows certain foundational principles (Prov. 1:7). Wisdom helps us live responsibly and for the benefit of others, and it also helps protect us from misfortune. Finally, just like education today, wisdom does not answer all the questions we may pose, but it enables us to be content with what we know while continuing to search for what is still unknown, and that is a good position from which we can learn to know God and to trust in His grace. According to Jeremiah 18:18, the role of the wise teacher is considered on a par with the roles of priest and prophet. All three convey messages from God to His people, in the form of instruction in the law, educational counsel, and special messages from God.

Better yet, instruction in righteousness which is right living which can only come when the gospel of grace is understood and taught. If we are are not teaching that when truly converted we will manifest all of the fruits of the Spirit, and not is missing, then we are not teaching the gospel of grace and the power it has to transform sinners into saints. Why are not our schools teaching our children 2 Corinthians 3:18? Because most do not believe it. And there is no greater sin than "unbelief."


How can we learn wisdom and then pass it on to those who come after us? Why is this so important for us, as a people, to do

Wisdom comes from God. It is the Holy Spirit that opens the mind to wisdom. If we want wisdom then we need to first learn to love God. When we love Him with the whole heart, then we become wise and the Holy Spirit then will give us all of the Spirit we can use. All begins in knowing the character of God so that we will trust Him with all we have and all we are. This is true conversion. When this happens in the life of a teacher, then he or she is prepared to teach others. Until then they ought not be teachers in our schools or pastors in our churches. This is the wisdom from above.

The youth of today may be educated for the fulfilment of high and holy purposes. They may be taught how they may be the children of God, through sanctification of the spirit and belief of the truth. By looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of their faith, they may become meet to be partakers with the saints in light. By beholding the character of their Redeemer, they will become changed into his image, having his mind, and being partakers of the divine nature. They are pupils in the school of Christ, learning from day to day lessons of the divine Master.  Youth Instructor October 25, 1894.


And teachers in our Sabbath Schools ought to be consecrated and educated to understand this or else how can they lead others to Christ? They can't.
Jesus receives His reward when we reflect His character, the fruits of the Spirit......We deny Jesus His reward when we do not.

Richard Myers

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  • A glorious sunset teaches of trust and faith.....
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Re: SDA Sabbath School Lesson 8--4th Quarter 2020--Education and Redemption
« Reply #6 on: November 16, 2020, 08:17:24 AM »


Friday ↥         November 20

Further Thought: The great gospel commission (Matt. 28:18-20) set in motion a remarkable religious movement throughout the whole world. Here a few apostles or missionaries (the two words mean the same – “those who are sent”) went throughout the whole world and gathered up students, made them into disciples, called them to believe in Jesus, baptized them, and proceeded to teach them all the things Jesus has commanded them. The picture is that of Christian converts from around the world, representing different cultures and speaking different languages, coming out of the waters of baptism only to enter a school and begin their education. This is not surprising, for they still had much to learn.

The reason Christians are always learning is not just intellectual curiosity or an eagerness to master knowledge, but rather that the Christian life and faith permeates every corner of daily life. There is so much to learn. Because of that, the letters of the New Testament contain both the proclamation about Jesus (sometimes called by the New Testament word kerygma [keh-RIG-ma]) and education in all the things Christians have to learn (sometimes called by the New Testament word didache [did-ah-KAY]). A good example of proclamation is seen in 1 Corinthians 2:2, whereas education begins in 1 Corinthians 4 and continues on and off in the rest of the letter. What is it Christians have to learn?

Work, rest, social issues, community relations, church and worship, economics, philanthropy, relations with the authorities, counseling, family systems, marriage relations and child rearing, food and its preparation, clothing, even getting old and preparing for the end of life, both one’s personal life and life in this world. To be a Christian means to learn something about all these things and more. Understanding them does not come naturally. It has to be learned.

Discussion Questions:

    How important is the educational work for the mission of the church?

    What did Ellen G. White mean when she wrote “Heaven is a school” (Education, p. 301)?

    Read 1 Corinthians 2:1-16 again. Look at what Paul is telling us about what God is revealing to us through inspiration. Think about his assertion that the rulers and wisdom of the age will come to nothing. If he could say that back then, what about some of the “wisdom” of our age, as well?
Jesus receives His reward when we reflect His character, the fruits of the Spirit......We deny Jesus His reward when we do not.

Richard Myers

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Re: SDA Sabbath School Lesson 8--4th Quarter 2020--Education and Redemption
« Reply #7 on: November 18, 2020, 11:51:14 AM »
Thursday          November 19

Education in the Early Church


One of the remarkable principles of education in Scripture emerges as Jesus, the Master Teacher, prepares to leave His students or disciples. They had been with Him for three and a half years, approximately the amount of time we allocate to a high school or college education. At the completion of either period, depending upon the person, students are often considered ready to manage on their own.

But Jesus knew better, and so He provided His followers with ongoing or continuing education under the tutelage of the Holy Spirit. Elsewhere that teacher or guide is identified as Comforter or Advocate (in Greek, paracletos), who will be given to the followers of Jesus permanently (John 14:16, 17). He is identified as the Spirit of Truth. While the Holy Spirit is not identified as an educator, the work of the Spirit certainly is educational, particularly as it pertains to seeking and finding the truth.

Read 1 Corinthians 2:1-16. What is Paul saying that is so important in the context of education?

Paul begins by reminding the church in Corinth that when he first came to them he spoke of nothing but Jesus Christ and His crucifixion (1 Cor. 2:2) – no clever wisdom, only the gospel proclamation.

Yes, Paul had to overcome the false teaching of the Jews. They even had  come into the churches he had raised up. It was indeed the gospel that he was burdened to teach. How did he feel about those that taught "another gospel" such as we see in our churches today? Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ. But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. As we said before, so say I now again, If any [man] preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed." Galatians 1:7-9. 

Do we hear these verses being quoted by teachers in our church today? In over 35 years, I have never heard them even whispered. Why not? Because few understand the simplicity of the gospel of grace. Here is Paul speaking in Romans such simple truths that all might understand the gospel:

 8:5   For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit. 
 8:6   For to be carnally minded [is] death; but to be spiritually minded [is] life and peace. 
 8:7   Because the carnal mind [is] enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. 
 8:8   So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God. 
 8:9   But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his. 
 8:10   And if Christ [be] in you, the body [is] dead because of sin; but the Spirit [is] life because of righteousness. 
 8:11   But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you. 
 8:12   Therefore, brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the flesh. 
 8:13   For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live. 
 8:14   For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God. 


But that was not the end of it (1 Cor. 2:6), because once these new Christians matured, the apostle would be back to teach them wisdom, the things God hid before the world began (1 Cor. 2:7), even the deep things of God (1 Cor. 2:10). All will be studied under the guidance of the Spirit of God as He joins with the spirit of the learner.

How deep will that study be, and how much learning will be open to those who are led by the Spirit? The chapter concludes with a quotation from the prophet Isaiah: “Who has directed the Spirit of the LORD, or as His counselor has taught him?” (Isa. 40:13, NKJV). The prophet speaking to ordinary people of his day would say that no one can do that. But Paul corrected that perception by concluding, “We have the mind of Christ,” meaning that Spirit-filled Christians have access even to the mind of God, and thus to any amount of learning and understanding (1 Cor. 2:10-13) that would be needed to know the path of righteousness.

Who are the "we"? How does one know if he is "spirit filled?" Read more from Galatians where we are told how to know true Spirit filled Christians, those who are truly converted and born of the Spirit:

 5:19   Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are [these]; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, 
 5:20   Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, 
 5:21   Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told [you] in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God. 
 5:22   But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, 
 5:23   Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law. 
 5:24   And they that are Christ's have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts. 


It is not hard to understand what this means, but only those who are converted  can discern Spiritual things, so maybe many have a hard time understanding they are under condemnation when they sin a known sin and reveal the works of the flesh and are lacking the fruits of the Spirit. If we add a little help by sharing what a prophet has said it may help shed light upon the gospel truth.

"When we live by faith on the Son of God, the fruits of the Spirit will be seen in our lives; not one will be missing."  Desire of Ages, pg 67.

Jesus receives His reward when we reflect His character, the fruits of the Spirit......We deny Jesus His reward when we do not.

Richard Myers

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Re: SDA Sabbath School Lesson 8--4th Quarter 2020--Education and Redemption
« Reply #8 on: November 20, 2020, 08:45:48 AM »
Friday         November 20

Further Thought: The great gospel commission (Matt. 28:18-20) set in motion a remarkable religious movement throughout the whole world. Here a few apostles or missionaries (the two words mean the same – “those who are sent”) went throughout the whole world and gathered up students, made them into disciples, called them to believe in Jesus, baptized them, and proceeded to teach them all the things Jesus has commanded them. The picture is that of Christian converts from around the world, representing different cultures and speaking different languages, coming out of the waters of baptism only to enter a school and begin their education. This is not surprising, for they still had much to learn.

It is true they had much to learn, we will be learning for eternity. But, it is not true that they began their education after baptism. One ought not be baptized until they have learned some very important things, especially the character of God. How is it they learn this prior to baptism? And, how do we know they have to learn this prior to baptism?


The reason Christians are always learning is not just intellectual curiosity or an eagerness to master knowledge, but rather that the Christian life and faith permeates every corner of daily life. There is so much to learn. Because of that, the letters of the New Testament contain both the proclamation about Jesus (sometimes called by the New Testament word kerygma [keh-RIG-ma]) and education in all the things Christians have to learn (sometimes called by the New Testament word didache [did-ah-KAY]). A good example of proclamation is seen in 1 Corinthians 2:2, whereas education begins in 1 Corinthians 4 and continues on and off in the rest of the letter. What is it Christians have to learn?

First and primary is that we are evil by nature and can do no good thing, otherwise why seek a Savior? Then we cannot be baptized until we trust God will all we are and all we have, this is the first and greatest of all the commandments. If we not have faith to believe God can deliver us from sin, then we do not have saving faith and ought not be baptized.


Work, rest, social issues, community relations, church and worship, economics, philanthropy, relations with the authorities, counseling, family systems, marriage relations and child rearing, food and its preparation, clothing, even getting old and preparing for the end of life, both one’s personal life and life in this world. To be a Christian means to learn something about all these things and more. Understanding them does not come naturally. It has to be learned.

Worshiping God comes as the result of knowing of His love for us while we were yet sinners. We do not have to learn to love Him and tell Him so. We love and worship Him because He first love us. It is the power of grace that transforms the heart from hatred of God to love for God. We must received this grace daily. We do so by beholding Him.


Discussion Questions:


    How important is the educational work for the mission of the church?

Look at Israel to see what false education does. When the gospel message is perverted, it is so very hard to be converted and remain converted. That is why the Bible says that the man or woman who brings a false gospel into the church is accursed. How can one bring others to Christ if they have not Christ themselves? They cannot, yet false education has a resulted in this being the case with so very many who know not that they are wretched, miserable, poor and blind, and naked. Jesus speaks to us today saying "repent." You can read this in the third chapter of the Book of Revelation. We are the Laodicean Church, but we are promised we shall see revival and reformation. It is on the way and we know that the Laodicean message will bring about this revival and reformation in God's church.


    What did Ellen G. White mean when she wrote “Heaven is a school” (Education, p. 301)?

    Read 1 Corinthians 2:1-16 again. Look at what Paul is telling us about what God is revealing to us through inspiration. Think about his assertion that the rulers and wisdom of the age will come to nothing. If he could say that back then, what about some of the “wisdom” of our age, as well?

We ought to be protected from the wisdom of "our age" from being brought into the church, but we are not. The world has come into God's church. How does this happen? It happened in Ellen White's day as well. How can we know this? Because the church was in need of reform in her day. Shortly after the church formed it began to backslide. It got the point that she said "It is rare in this age of the world to find one who is truly born again."

How many believe this? Do you? Then share it in your Sabbath School class, since so many know not the history of our church, nor its condition today, even though Jesus prophesied it through John almost 2,000 years ago.

The minds of many are clouded with unbelief because those who unite with the church as the chosen of God do not reveal the virtues that are the fruits of the Spirit. Joining the church is not a sure evidence that a man has joined himself to Christ. The new birth is a rare experience in this age of the world. This is the reason why there are so many perplexities in the churches. Many, so many, who assume the name of Christ are unsanctified and unholy. They have been baptized, but they were buried alive. Self did not die, and therefore they did not rise to newness of life in Christ.
 
Thousands who claim to be religious are not Christians. Paul was very strict in carrying out his religion, but he was not a Christian until Christ revealed Himself to him and talked with him, showing him that he was persecuting his Master in the person of His saints. Then Paul was converted. He became one of the sect he had despised and hated; and for his love of Christ he received the same cruel treatment that he had once cooperated with others in giving. { 12MR 51.2 }
The churches have an abundance of the religion and zeal that Paul had. Many persecute those who differ from them in religious matters. But no true Christian will persecute one who conscientiously differs from him in faith. Those who try to force the consciences of their fellowmen do it because Christ is not abiding in their hearts. They do not realize that they have the attributes of Satan, but he delights to make them his instruments to bear witness against God’s chosen ones. They strive to make them observe rites that have no foundation in the Word of God. When these persecutors have the Spirit of Christ, they will hear and receive the words of Christ “Touch not Mine anointed, and do My prophets no harm” ( 1 Chronicles 16:22). Christ and Him crucified will absorb the whole soul. [Colossians 3:12-17, 23-25, quoted.]

What does God require? Perfection, nothing less than perfection. But if we would be perfect, we must put no confidence in self. Daily we must know and understand that self is not to be trusted. We need to grasp God’s promises with firm faith. We need to ask for the Holy Spirit with a full realization of our own helplessness. Then when the Holy Spirit works we shall not give self the glory. The Holy Spirit will graciously take the heart into His keeping, bringing to it all the bright beams of the Sun of Righteousness. We shall be kept by the power of God through faith. 
When we are daily under the control of God’s Spirit, we shall be commandment-keeping people. 12Manuscript Release, pg 52.
Jesus receives His reward when we reflect His character, the fruits of the Spirit......We deny Jesus His reward when we do not.