Friday: Further Study: The Church
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studymore

Further Study: Ellen G. White, Christian Unity, p. 236-248, in Testimonies for the Church, vol. 5; One With Christ in God, p. 239-243, in Testimonies for the Church, vol. 8. Union is strength; division is weakness. When those who believe present truth are united, they exert a telling influence. Satan well understands this. Never was he more determined than now to make of none effect the truth of God by causing bitterness and dissension among the Lord’s people. — Ellen [...]

Is Uniformity of Belief Necessary for Unity?
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Diversity and Unity from Wikimedia Commons

So is there a difference between uniformity and unity?

In “uniformity,” you will find the word “uniform.” And that serves as a good illustration. When I taught in a Christian school with school uniforms, all the students look equally good. But do you believe their uniforms make them equally good in heart and character?

Unity in Diversity (Wikimedia Commons)

In His intercessory prayer, Christ prayed for unity in the body of believers, asking that …

” … they may all be one, just [...]

Thursday: The Restoration of Unity
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Image © Standard Publishing from GoodSalt.com

Why is reconciliation with an offended brother a prerequisite for acceptable worship? See Matt. 5:23-24.

Image © Standard Publishing from GoodSalt.com

There were different kinds of offerings brought to the altar, but Jesus was probably referring to an animal sacrificed so the sinner could receive divine forgiveness. Before we can obtain God’s pardon, however, we must make things right with others. Reconciliation requires a humble recognition of our faults. Without this attitude, how could we ask for God’s forgiveness?

What [...]

Wednesday: A Great Obstacle for Unity
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James 3:5-6
Wildfire in California from Wikimedia Commons

How can Jesus’ words in Matthew 7:1-5 help us to avoid divisions and conflicts in the church?

James 3:5-6Wildfire in California from Wikimedia Commons

It is much easier to see the faults in others than to see our own. To criticize gives a false sense of superiority, because the critic compares himself with other human beings who seem to be worse than he is. Our aim, however, is not to compare ourselves with others but with Jesus.

How many problems could [...]

08: The Church – Lesson Plan
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gless08-2014c

Key Thought : The church is not an invention of man. The church was established by Jesus Christ to continue His covenant relationship with man.

[Lesson Plan for The Church August 18, 2014]

1. Have a volunteer read Matthew 16:18.

a. Ask class members to share a thought on what the most important point in this text is.
b. Who is the Rock that the church is founded upon? Why is it important to know that the church is founded on Jesus Christ?
c. [...]

HopeSS: The Church
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hopetv

You can view a discussion of the current lesson in the Hope Sabbath School class led by Pastor Derek Morris. (Adobe Flash Player version.) A Youtube version of this week’s lesson at Hope Sabbath School is below. You can download the video, the MP3 audio, and the lesson outline from the HopeTV Sabbath School Site. You might also want to bookmark the HopeSS Youtube channel.

Tuesday: Christ’s Provision for Unity
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Image © Pacific Press from GoodSalt.com

What is the basis for the unity that Jesus prayed about for His church? See John 17:23 and John 15:1-5.

Image © Pacific Press from GoodSalt.com

You in Me, and I in you (John 14:20, NKJV) expresses the intimate relationship we need to have with Jesus. The presence of Jesus in our hearts produces unity. He brings to our lives two things that are indispensable for unity: the divine Word and divine love.

If we have Jesus, we will also have [...]

Monday: Christ’s Prayer for Unity
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Image © Lars Justinen from GoodSalt.com

It was Thursday night. After the Last Supper, Jesus and the disciples went toward the Mount of Olives. On their way to Gethsemane, Jesus stopped and prayed for Himself, for His disciples, and for all who later would believe in Him through the apostles’ preaching. Although the agony of the Cross was before Him, His greatest concern was not for Himself but for His followers. John 17 presents Jesus’ longest intercessory prayer recorded in the Bible. It is encouraging to [...]

Sunday: The Foundation of the Church
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Image © John Baker from GoodSalt.com

Jesus said on this rock I will build My church (Matt. 16:18, NKJV). Who is the rock (petra in Greek) upon which the church is built? Some interpreters believe that Peter is the rock. They argue that the Lord used a play on words between Peter and rock (Petros and petra, respectively, in Greek)-a play that presumably would be clearer in the Aramaic language, which Jesus probably used. The fact is, however, that nobody knows with certitude the exact wording [...]

Did Jesus Tell Us to Love Ourselves First?
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Image © Sally Weimer from GoodSalt.com

The speaker was telling us that when Jesus told us to love our neighbors as ourselves, He was saying that we need to love ourselves first.

Image © Sally Weimer from GoodSalt.com

After all, if we don’t love ourselves, we can’t love our neighbors. I was only 15 and was sitting in a girls’ dormitory worship service. But something just didn’t compute for me. It seemed to make logical sense, but it was contrary to what I had read in the [...]