Monday: To Be Set Apart
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GoodSalt.com-mjaas0021

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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GoodSalt.com-lwjas0435

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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gless05

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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future_study

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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gis04

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 [...]

04: God of Grace and Judgment – Thought Starters
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Green Question Marks

The world totters on the brink of moral collapse.1

The Judge of All is about to pass judgment on those who have refused to acknowledge Him as their Leader Eternal.
“Is there anyone else,” He calls out, “anyone else who wants to be free from the burden of sin?”
A few people struggle towards Him. The rest slink away.
“Not fair!” roars the enemy. “Condemn all or condemn none!”
“I won’t do that,” the Judge of All replies. “All who come to Me will be saved.”

The enemy [...]

04: God of Grace and Judgment – Teaching Plan
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gless04

Key Thought: Justice demands the death penalty for our sins. Yet grace through the suffering of Christ on our behalf delivers us from death if we accept it.

[Teaching Plan for "The God of Grace and Judgment" January 25, 2012]

1. Have a volunteer read Ecclesiastes 12:13,14.

A. Ask class members to share a short thought on what the main idea of this text is.
B. What does it mean to fear God? Are we to be afraid of God and the [...]

Thursday: The Hour of His Judgment
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GoodSalt.com-lwjas0254

“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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lifeboat_niv

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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GoodSalt.com-prcas4705

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. [...]