Lesson & References Index

Lesson 11 – March 7 - 13

Living by Faith

(All Bible texts are in the NKJV Bible unless otherwise indicated)

Sabbath Afternoon

Memory text: Proverbs 29:25

25 The fear of man brings a snare,
But whoever trusts in the Lord shall be safe.

Matthew 6:33

33 But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.

Sunday – Keep the Law

Proverbs 28:4

4 Those who forsake the law praise the wicked,
But such as keep the law contend with them.

Proverbs 28:7

7 Whoever keeps the law is a discerning son,
But a companion of gluttons shames his father.

Proverbs 28:9

9 One who turns away his ear from hearing the law,
Even his prayer is an abomination.

Proverbs 13:14

14 The law of the wise is a fountain of life,
To turn one away from the snares of death.

Proverbs 29:18

18 Where there is no revelation, the people cast off restraint;
But happy is he who keeps the law.

1 Kings 3:9

9 Therefore give to Your servant an understanding heart to judge Your people, that I may discern between good and evil. For who is able to judge this great people of Yours?”

Romans 1:16-17
The Just Live by Faith

16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek.17 For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, “The just shall live by faith.”

Monday – Seek the Lord

Romans 7:7-13
Sin’s Advantage in the Law

7 What shall we say then? Is the law sin? Certainly not! On the contrary, I would not have known sin except through the law. For I would not have known covetousness unless the law had said, “You shall not covet.” 8 But sin, taking opportunity by the commandment, produced in me all manner of evil desire. For apart from the law sin was dead. 9 I was alive once without the law, but when the commandment came, sin revived and I died. 10 And the commandment, which was to bring life, I found to bring death. 11 For sin, taking occasion by the commandment, deceived me, and by it killed me. 12 Therefore the law is holy, and the commandment holy and just and good.

Law Cannot Save from Sin

13 Has then what is good become death to me? Certainly not! But sin, that it might appear sin, was producing death in me through what is good, so that sin through the commandment might become exceedingly sinful.

Galatians 3:24

24 Therefore the law was our tutor to bring us to Christ, that we might be justified by faith.

Proverbs 28:5

5 Evil men do not understand justice,
But those who seek the Lord understand all.

Proverbs 28:4

4 Those who forsake the law praise the wicked,
But such as keep the law contend with them.

Tuesday – Words for the Rich

1 John 2:15-17
Do Not Love the World

15 Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. 16 For all that is in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—is not of the Father but is of the world. 17 And the world is passing away, and the lust of it; but he who does the will of God abides forever.

Proverbs 28:8

8 One who increases his possessions by usury and extortion
Gathers it for him who will pity the poor.

Proverbs 28:27

27 He who gives to the poor will not lack,
But he who hides his eyes will have many curses.

Proverbs 28:25

25 He who is of a proud heart stirs up strife,
But he who trusts in the Lord will be prospered.

Proverbs 28:19

19 He who tills his land will have plenty of bread,
But he who follows frivolity will have poverty enough!

Proverbs 28:20

20 A faithful man will abound with blessings,
But he who hastens to be rich will not go unpunished.

Proverbs 28:22

22 A man with an evil eye hastens after riches,
And does not consider that poverty will come upon him.

Mark 4:19

19 and the cares of this world, the deceitfulness of riches, and the desires for other things entering in choke the word, and it becomes unfruitful.

Wednesday – Handbook for the Poor

Proverbs 29:13

13 The poor man and the oppressor have this in common:
The Lord gives light to the eyes of both.

Proverbs 22:2

2 The rich and the poor have this in common,
The Lord is the maker of them all.

Matthew 5:44-45

44 But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you, 45 that you may be sons of your Father in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.

Proverbs 28:6

6 Better is the poor who walks in his integrity
Than one perverse in his ways, though he be rich.

Proverbs 24:34

34 So shall your poverty come like a prowler,
And your need like an armed man.

Thursday – Loving the Truth

2 Thessalonians 2:10

10 and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved.

Ellen G. White, Education, pp. 13 – 15.
Chapter 1 - Source and Aim of True Education

Our ideas of education take too narrow and too low a range. There is need of a broader scope, a higher aim. True education means more than the pursual of a certain course of study. It means more than a preparation for the life that now is. It has to do with the whole being, and with the whole period of existence possible to man. It is the harmonious development of the physical, the mental, and the spiritual powers. It prepares the student for the joy of service in this world and for the higher joy of wider service in the world to come.

The source of such an education is brought to view in these words of Holy Writ, pointing to the Infinite One: In Him "are hid all the treasures of wisdom." Colossians 2:3. "He hath counsel and understanding." Job 12:13.

The world has had its great teachers, men of giant intellect and extensive research, men whose utterances have stimulated thought and opened to view vast fields of knowledge; and these men have been honored as guides and benefactors of their race; but there is One who stands higher than they. We can trace the line of the world's teachers as far back as human records extend; but the Light was before them. As the moon and the stars of our solar system shine by the reflected light of the sun, so, as far as their teaching is true, do the world's great thinkers reflect the rays of the Sun of Righteousness. Every gleam of thought, every flash of the intellect, is from the Light of the world.

In these days much is said concerning the nature and importance of "higher education." The true "higher education" is that imparted by Him with whom "is wisdom and strength" (Job 12:13), out of whose mouth "cometh knowledge and understanding." Proverbs 2:6.

In a knowledge of God all true knowledge and real development have their source. Wherever we turn, in the physical, the mental, or the spiritual realm; in whatever we behold, apart from the blight of sin, this knowledge is revealed. Whatever line of investigation we pursue, with a sincere purpose to arrive at truth, we are brought in touch with the unseen, mighty Intelligence that is working in and through all. The mind of man is brought into communion with the mind of God, the finite with the Infinite. The effect of such communion on body and mind and soul is beyond estimate.

In this communion is found the highest education. It is God's own method of development. "Acquaint now thyself with Him" (Job 22:21), is His message to mankind. The method outlined in these words was the method followed in the education of the father of our race. When in the glory of sinless manhood Adam stood in holy Eden, it was thus that God instructed him.

In order to understand what is comprehended in the work of education, we need to consider both the nature of man and the purpose of God in creating him. We need to consider also the change in man's condition through the coming in of a knowledge of evil, and God's plan for still fulfilling His glorious purpose in the education of the human race.

When Adam came from the Creator's hand, he bore, in his physical, mental, and spiritual nature, a likeness to his Maker. "God created man in His own image" (Genesis 1:27), and it was His purpose that the longer man lived the more fully he should reveal this image--the more fully reflect the glory of the Creator. All his faculties were capable of development; their capacity and vigor were continually to increase. Vast was the scope offered for their exercise, glorious the field opened to their research. The mysteries of the visible universe--the "wondrous works of Him which is perfect in knowledge" (Job 37:16)--invited man's study. Face-to-face, heart-to-heart communion with his Maker was his high privilege. Had he remained loyal to God, all this would have been his forever. Throughout eternal ages he would have continued to gain new treasures of knowledge, to discover fresh springs of happiness, and to obtain clearer and yet clearer conceptions of the wisdom, the power, and the love of God. More and more fully would he have fulfilled the object of his creation, more and more fully have reflected the Creator's glory.

But by disobedience this was forfeited. Through sin the divine likeness was marred, and well-nigh obliterated. Man's physical powers were weakened, his mental capacity was lessened, his spiritual vision dimmed. He had become subject to death. Yet the race was not left without hope. By infinite love and mercy the plan of salvation had been devised, and a life of probation was granted. To restore in man the image of his Maker, to bring him back to the perfection in which he was created, to promote the development of body, mind, and soul, that the divine purpose in his creation might be realized--this was to be the work of redemption. This is the object of education, the great object of life.

Love, the basis of creation and of redemption, is the basis of true education. This is made plain in the law that God has given as the guide of life. The first and great commandment is, "Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind." Luke 10:27. To love Him, the infinite, the omniscient One, with the whole strength, and mind, and heart, means the highest development of every power. It means that in the whole being-- the body, the mind, as well as the soul--the image of God is to be restored.

Proverbs 29:15

15 The rod and rebuke give wisdom,
But a child left to himself brings shame to his mother.

Proverbs 29:19

19 A servant will not be corrected by mere words;
For though he understands, he will not respond.

Friday – Further Study

Ellen G. White, Sons and Daughters of God, p. 267.
We are to Do Good to Our Neighbors, September 17

Withhold not good from them to whom it is due, when it is in the power of thine hand to do it Proverbs 3:27.

So ready, so eager is the Saviour’s heart to welcome us as members of the family of God, that in the very first words we are to use in approaching God, He places the assurance of our divine relationship,—“Our Father.” ... In calling God our Father, we recognize all His children as our brethren. We are all a part of the great web of humanity, all members of one family. In our petitions we are to include our neighbors as well as ourselves. No one prays aright who seeks a blessing for himself alone.

We are bound to the Lord by the strongest ties, and the manifestation of our Father's love should call forth the most filial affection and the most ardent gratitude. The laws of God have their foundation in the most immutable rectitude, and are so framed that they will promote the happiness of those who keep them.

In the lesson of faith that Christ taught on the mount, are revealed the principles of true religion. Religion brings man into personal relation with God, but not exclusively; for the principles of heaven are to be lived out, that they may help and bless humanity. A true child of God will love Him with all his heart, and his neighbor as himself. He will have an interest for his fellow-men. True religion is the work of grace upon the heart, that causes the life to flow out in good works, like a fountain fed from living streams. Religion does not consist merely in meditation and prayer. The Christian’s light is displayed in good works, and is thus recognized by others. Religion is not to be divorced from the business life. It is to pervade and sanctify its engagements and enterprises. If a man is truly connected with God and heaven, the spirit that dwells in heaven will influence all his words and actions. He will glorify God in his works, and will lead others to honor Him.

Ellen G. White, Testimonies for the Church, vol. 5, pp. 324 - 328.

You should feel under obligation, by patient, painstaking effort and by earnest, fervent prayer, to so form the characters of your children as to make them a blessing in the home, a blessing in the church, and a blessing in society. You will receive no credit for your work if you allow your children to be controlled by the enemy of all righteousness; the reward is promised for conscientiously forming their characters after the divine Pattern. If you neglect this work, which is so far-reaching in its results, because for the present it is more agreeable for you to do so, and your children grow up morally deformed, their feet in the broad road to death, can God pronounce your work well done? Those who cannot inform themselves, and work intelligently with all their powers to bring their children to Jesus, should decide not to take upon themselves the responsibility of becoming parents.

Mothers must be willing and even anxious to qualify themselves for their important work of developing the characters of their children, guiding, instructing, and restraining their tender charge. Fathers and mothers should be united in this work. Weakness in requiring obedience, and false love and sympathy—the false notion that to indulge and not to restrain is wisdom—constitute a system of training that grieves angels; but it delights Satan, for it brings hundreds and thousands of children into his ranks. This is why he blinds the eyes of parents, benumbs their sensibilities, and confuses their minds. They see that their sons and daughters are not pleasant, lovely, obedient, and care-taking; yet children accumulate in their homes, to poison their lives, fill their hearts with grief, and add to the number whom Satan is using to allure souls to destruction.

Oh! when will parents be wise? When will they see and realize the character of their work in neglecting to require obedience and respect according to the instructions of God’s word? The results of this lax training are seen in the children as they go out into the world and take their place at the head of families of their own. They perpetuate the mistakes of their parents. Their defective traits have full scope; and they transmit to others the wrong tastes, habits, and tempers that were permitted to develop in their own characters. Thus they become a curse instead of a blessing to society.

Because men and women do not obey God, but choose their own way and follow their own perverted imagination, Satan is permitted to set up his hellish banner in their families and make his power felt through babes, children, and youth. His voice and will are expressed in the unsubdued will and warped characters of the children, and through them he exerts a controlling power and carries out his plans. God is dishonored by the exhibition of perverse tempers, which exclude reverence for Him and induce obedience to Satan’s suggestions. The sin committed by parents in thus permitting Satan to bear sway is beyond conception. They are sowing seed which will produce briers and thorns, and choke out every plant of heavenly growth; and the harvest that will be gathered the judgment alone will reveal. But how sad is the thought that when life and its mistakes are viewed in the light of eternity, it will be too late for this aftersight to be of any avail.

The utter neglect of training children for God has perpetuated evil and thrown into the ranks of the enemy many who with judicious care might have been co-laborers with Christ. False ideas and a foolish, misdirected affection have nurtured traits which have made the children unlovely and unhappy, have embittered the lives of the parents, and have extended their baleful influence from generation to generation. Any child that is permitted to have his own way will dishonor God and bring his father and mother to shame. Light has been shining from the word of God and the testimonies of His Spirit so that none need err in regard to their duty. God requires parents to bring up their children to know Him and to respect His claims; they are to train their little ones, as the younger members of the Lord’s family, to have beautiful characters and lovely tempers, that they may be fitted to shine in the heavenly courts. By neglecting their duty and indulging their children in wrong, parents close to them the gates of the city of God.

These facts must be pressed home upon parents; they must arouse, and take up their long-neglected work. Parents who profess to love God are not doing His will. Because they do not properly restrain and direct their children, thousands are coming up with deformed characters, with lax morals, and with little education in the practical duties of life. They are left to do as they please with their impulses, their time, and their mental powers. The loss to the cause of God in these neglected talents lies at the door of fathers and mothers; and what excuse will they render to Him whose stewards they are, entrusted with the sacred duty of fitting the souls under their charge to improve all their powers to the glory of their Creator?

My dear brother and sister, may the Lord open your eyes and quicken your minds, that you may see and redeem your failures. You are neither of you living with an eye single to the glory of God. You show but little power to stand up for Jesus and in defense of the faith once delivered to the saints. You have neglected your duty in the family and have proved that youth entrusted to your care are not safe. Thus God looks upon your work in the home; thus it stands registered in the books of heaven. You might have brought many to Jesus; but your want of moral courage has made you unfaithful in every position.

The errors in your lax system of family government are revealed in the characters of your children. You have not educated yourselves to follow the instructions given in the word of God. The evils resulting from your failures in duty are becoming serious and deep. Sister G does not have the right influence. She has yielded to the strong wills of her wrong-minded children, and has indulged them to their hurt. Both of you should have taught your children from their very babyhood that they could not control you, but that your will was to be obeyed. Had Sister G received the proper training in her childhood, had she been disciplined and educated according to the word of God, she would have a different mold of character herself and would better understand the duties that devolve upon her. She would know how to train her children so as to make their ways pleasing to God. But the defects that have resulted from her own wrong training are reproduced in her children, and what will be the nature of their work should they ever stand at the head of families of their own? The oldest may have some knowledge of domestic duties; but, further than this, she is a mere novice.

With wise, firm government these children might have been useful members of society; as it is, they are a curse, a reproach to our faith. They are vain, frivolous, willful, extravagant. They have but little reverence for their parents, and their consciences are far from sensitive. They have had their own way, and their wishes have governed their parents, until it is almost impossible to arouse their moral sensibilities. The natural tendencies of the parents, particularly those that are objectionable, are strongly developed in the children. The whole family, parents and children, are under divine censure; and none of them can hope to enter the peaceful abodes of bliss unless they will take up their long-neglected duties and, in the spirit of Christ, build up characters that God can approve.

Parents are responsible for the work coming from their hands. They should have wisdom and firmness to do their work faithfully and in the right spirit. They are to train their children for usefulness by developing their God-given talents. A failure to do this should not be winked at, but should be made a matter of church discipline, for it will bring the curse of God on the parents and a reproach and grievous trials and difficulties on the church. A moral leprosy that is contagious, polluting the bodies and souls of the youth, often results from a failure to discipline and restrain the young; and it is time that something was done to check its ravages.

The Bible gives explicit directions concerning the important work of educating children: “Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God is one Lord: and thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might. And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart.” The parents are themselves to be connected with God; they are to have His fear before them and to have a knowledge of His will. Then comes their work: “And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up. And thou shalt bind them for a sign upon thine hand, and they shall be as frontlets between thine eyes. And thou shalt write them upon the posts of thy house, and on thy gates.”