Wednesday: Depart From Me!
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In the Old Testament, we find a consistent record of human responses to a God who is holy. What about in the New? Some modern Christians argue that the Old Testament presents a primitive and outdated picture of God, a God who is harsh and very prone to anger. But when Jesus comes, He is now the God of grace and love. We know, of course, that this is a distorted view of the Bible and of the character of […]

Tuesday: To Repent in Dust and Ashes
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After enduring inhuman suffering at the hand of Satan, Job cries out: “I have heard of thee by the hearing of the ear: but now mine eye seeth thee. Wherefore I abhor myself, and repent in dust and ashes” (Job 42:5, 6). What does this response tell us about God’s holiness in contrast to human sinfulness? In what ways is the gospel being preached in Job’s reaction to what he experienced? 1

The prophet Ezekiel, whom God graciously sends to Israel (even though they are […]

Monday: To Be Set Apart
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What is the first time the concept of “holiness” (from the same root often translated “sanctified”) is mentioned in Scripture? Gen. 2:3. How significant is the fact that the first thing deemed holy in the Bible is time?1

This text gives us our first understanding of holiness. It shows that something, in this case time, is “set apart” from that which is around it. The seventh day itself is no different from any other 24-hour, sunset-to-sunset period; what makes it different, “holy,” is that […]

Sunday: “It Is Written”
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Even a superficial study of church history makes it clear that it’s all too easy to develop ideas about God and then to worship these ideas instead of God Himself, the God revealed in the Bible. As the skeptic Voltaire quipped: “God made man in His image, and man has returned the compliment.” We may not even realize that we have an incomplete or even false understanding of God.1

Thus, we must return to Scripture and compare our thinking about God […]

Sabbath: The Holiness of God
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Read for This Week’s Study: Matt. 11:10; Mark 1:2; Gen. 2:3; Job 42:5, 6; Luke 5:1–11; Luke 4:31–36; Isa. 6:1–3; Rev. 4:8, 9.

Memory Text:

“Exalt the Lord our God, and worship at his holy hill; for the Lord our God is holy” (Psalm 99:9).

Key Thought: Scripture gives much attention to God’s holiness. What does this holiness tell us about what God is like and what it means to the plan of salvation?

One of the foundational assumptions of all biblical writers is that the God of heaven exists. None ever express […]

Further Study: The God of Grace and Judgment
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How do grace and judgment work together? Here’s how inspiration reveals it.

“While Jesus is pleading for the subjects of His grace, Satan accuses them before God as transgressors. The great deceiver has sought to lead them into skepticism, to cause them to lose confidence in God, to separate themselves from His love, and to break His law. Now he points to the record of their lives, to the defects of character, the unlikeness to Christ, which has dishonored their Redeemer, […]

Inside Story: The Stolen Cow
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Jacque Thermil

Roseline lives in a village in northwestern Haiti. She felt rich, for she owned three cows. But she also felt grateful to God for her wealth and had dedicated one of her cows to God. Now the cow was about to give birth, and Roseline would give the calf to the Lord.

One day after finishing her morning devotions, Roseline went to tend to her cows. But her dedicated cow was missing. She walked up and down the path calling […]

Thursday: The Hour of His Judgment
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“Fear them not therefore: for there is nothing covered, that shall not be revealed; and hid, that shall not be known”(Matt. 10:26).1

Looking around at the world, we shouldn’t have a problem understanding the idea of judgment and condemnation. One doesn’t have to be a believing Christian to realize that something is radically wrong with humanity. Who can’t see what a royal mess, even disaster, we’ve made of things? Maybe we cry so hard at birth because, instinctively, we know what’s […]

Wednesday: Condemnation and Grace
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Most everyone is familiar with John 3:16. What comes after, though, helps flesh it out and explain it even better.

Read John 3:17–21. What does it say about judgment? About grace? How do these verses reveal to us how grace and judgment work together? 

The word translated “condemn” in verse 17 is also translated in some versions as “judge.” Clearly, though, the context is that of condemnation, because God has made it clear in numerous other places that the world will be judged.

Two themes appear in […]

Tuesday: The Flood
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Critics of the Bible make a big deal of the fact that other ancient civilizations had their own flood stories. They argue that the Bible story isn’t unique, original, or even true but is merely a copy of some previous myth or legend.1

On the other hand, those who believe that the Bible is the Word of God see these stories as a confirmation of the reality of the Flood. The Flood happened, and Genesis gives the inspired account of it. […]