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SDA Sabbath School Lesson 6-1st Quarter 2024--I Will Arise

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Richard Myers:
Quarter 1 Lesson 6            Feb 3 - Feb

I Will Arise

Commentary in Navy                  Inspiration in Maroon

Richard Myers:
Sabbath Afternoon

Read for This Week’s Study

Psalms 18:3-18; Psalms 41:1-3; Deuteronomy 15:7-11; Psalms 82:1-8; Psalms 96:6-10; Psalms 99:1-4; Romans 8:34.

    Memory Text:
    “For the oppression of the poor, for the sighing of the needy, now will I arise, saith the LORD; I will set him in safety from him that puffeth at him.” (Psalms 12:5).

Our age is not the only age in which evil, injustice, and oppression rage. The psalmists lived in such a time, as well. And so, whatever else they are, the Psalms are also God’s protests against the violence and oppression in the world, in our world, and that of the psalmists, as well.

Yes, the Lord is long-suffering and holds His wrath in His great forbearance, not wanting anyone to perish but to repent and change their ways (2 Peter 3:9-15). And though God’s proper time for His intervention does not always coincide with human expectations, the day of God’s judgment is coming (Psalms 96:13; Psalms 98:9). We just need to trust in Him, and in His promises, until that day comes.

Only the Creator, whose throne is founded on righteousness and justice (Psalms 89:14; Psalms 97:2), can provide, with His sovereign judgment, stability and prosperity to the world. The twofold aspect of divine judgment includes deliverance of the oppressed and destruction of the wicked (Psalms 7:6-17).

This is what we have been promised, and this is what will, indeed, one day come—but in God’s time, not ours, a point that the psalmist emphasizes.

We glory in our tribulation.

*Study this week’s lesson to prepare for Sabbath, February 10.

Richard Myers:
Sunday February 4
The Majestic Warrior

Read Psalms 18:3-18; Psalms 76:3-9; Psalms 76:12; Psalms 144:5-7. How is the Lord portrayed in these texts? What do these images convey about God’s readiness to deliver His people?

These hymns praise the Lord for His awesome power over the evil forces that threaten His people. They portray God in His majesty as Warrior and Judge. The image of God as Warrior is frequent in the Psalms and highlights the severity and urgency of God’s response to His people’s cries and suffering.

“The Lord thundered from heaven, / And the Most High uttered His voice, / Hailstones and coals of fire. / He sent out His arrows and scattered the foe, / Lightnings in abundance, and He vanquished them. / Then the channels of the sea were seen, / The foundations of the world were uncovered /At Your rebuke, O Lord, / At the blast of the breath of Your nostrils” (Psalms 18:13-15).

The sheer determination and magnitude of God’s action should disperse any doubt about God’s great care and compassion for the sufferers or about His ability to defeat evil. We just need to wait for Him to do it.

In the end, even when God’s people, such as David, were involved in war, deliverance did not come from human means. In his many battles against the enemies of God’s people, King David praised God as the only One who achieved all the victories. It would have been easy for David to take credit for what happened, for his many successes and triumphs, but that was not his frame of mind. He knew where the Source of his power came from.

Although David states that the Lord trains his hands for war (Psalms 18:34), nowhere in the Psalms does he rely on his battle skills. Instead, the Lord fights for David and delivers him (Psalms 18:47-48).

In the Psalms, King David, who was known as a successful warrior, assumes his role as a skilled musician and praises the Lord as the only Deliverer and Sustainer of His people (Psalms 144:10-15). Praise and prayer to the Lord are David’s sources of strength, which are more power­ful than any weapon of war. God alone is to be trusted and worshiped.

Whatever gifts and skills and success you have had in life, why must you always remember the Source of them all? What danger do you face if you forget that Source?

To forget our need of God for any good thing, is to forget God and our fallen nature.

Richard Myers:
Monday February 5
Justice for the Oppressed

Read Psalms 9:18; Psalms 12:5; Psalms 40:17; Psalms 113:7; Psalms 146:6-10; Psalms 41:1-3. What is the message here to us, even today?

God exhibits special care and concern for justice regarding the various vulnerable groups of people, including the poor, needy, oppressed, fatherless, widows, widowers, and strangers. The Psalms, like the Law and the prophets, are clear on that point (Exodus 22:21-27; Isaiah 3:13-15).

Many psalms use the expression “poor and needy” and avoid representing the oppressed in exclusively national and religious terms. This is done in order to highlight God’s universal care for all humanity.

The expression “poor and needy” is not limited to material poverty but also signifies vulnerability and helplessness. The expression appeals to God’s compassion, and it conveys the idea that the sufferer is alone and has no other help but God. The depiction “poor and needy” also pertains to one’s sincerity, truthfulness, and love for God in confessing one’s total dependence on God and renouncing any trace of self-reliance and self-assertion.

Meanwhile, caring for the deprived (Psalms 41:1-3) demonstrates the people’s faithfulness to God. Evil done against the vulnerable were particularly heinous sins in biblical culture (Deuteronomy 15:7-11). The Psalms inspire faithful people to raise their voices against every oppression.

Especially the oppression done by His people. Above all is oppression done by leaders in His church.

The Psalms also underline the futility of grounding one’s confidence on perishable human means as the ultimate source of wisdom and security. God’s people must resist the temptation to put ultimate faith for salvation in human leaders and institutions, especially when they differ from God’s ways.

In His grace, our Lord identified Himself with the poor by becoming poor Himself that through His poverty many might become rich (2 Corinthians 8:9). Christ’s riches include deliverance from every oppression brought by sin, and He promises us eternal life in God’s kingdom (). Jesus Christ fulfills the Psalms’ promises as the divine Judge, who will judge every mistreatment of the deprived, as well as neglect of duty toward them (Matthew 25:31-46).

How much do we think of the “poor and needy” among us, and how much do we do for them?

We are surrounded by the poor and needy. Are all not poor and needy? And do we not see the wickedness in our cities? Come Lord Jesus!  Yes, we are to care for the needy poor.

Richard Myers:
Tuesday February 6
How Long Will You Judge Unjustly?

The Lord has endowed Israel’s leaders with authority to maintain justice in Israel (Psalms 72:1-7; Psalms 72:12-14). Israel’s kings were to exercise their authority in accordance with God’s will. The leaders’ central concern should be ensuring peace and justice in the land and caring for the socially disadvantaged. Only then shall the land and the entire people prosper. The king’s throne is strengthened by faithfulness to God, not by human power.

Is not there the same responsibility in the church today?

Read Psalms 82:1-8. What happens when the leaders pervert justice and oppress the people they are tasked to protect?

Trust in the church is lost to a great degree.

In Psalms 82:1-8, God declares His judgments upon Israel’s corrupt judges. The “gods” (Psalms 82:1; Psalms 82:6) are clearly neither pagan gods nor angels because they were never tasked with delivering justice to God’s people and so could not be judged for not fulfilling it. The charges listed in Psalms 82:2-4 echo the laws of the Torah, identifying the “gods” as Israel’s leaders (Deuteronomy 1:16-18; Deuteronomy 16:18-20; John 10:33-35). God questions the “sons of men” whether they judge justly, and their punish­ment is announced because they have been found unrighteous. The leaders totter in darkness without knowledge (Psalms 82:5) because they have abandoned God’s law, the light (Psalms 119:105).

The Scripture unswervingly upholds the view that the Lord is the only God. God shares His governance of the world with appointed human leaders as His representatives (Romans 13:1). How often, however, have these human representatives, both in history and even now, perverted the responsibility that they have been given?

Too often.

Psalms 82:1-8 mockingly exposes the apostasy of some leaders who believed themselves to be “gods” above other people. Although God gave the authority and the privilege to the Israelite leaders to be called the “children of the Most High” and to represent Him, God renounces the wicked leaders. God reminds them that they are mortal and subject to the same moral laws as all people. No one is above God’s law (Psalms 82:6-8).

God will judge the entire world; God’s people, too, shall give an account to God. Both the leaders and the people should emulate the example of the divine Judge and place their ultimate hope in Him.

What kind of authority do you hold over others? How justly and fairly are you exercising that authority? Take heed.

It is very sad to see God's church not reflecting the character of God, even we see rebellion in the highest level. The greater the authority, the greater the punishment for not walking in the light.


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