Friday: Further Thought – The Priority of the Promise

Further Thought: “In their bondage the people had to a great extent lost the knowledge of God and of the principles of the Abrahamic covenant. In delivering them from Egypt, God sought to reveal to them His power and His mercy, that they might be led to love and trust Him.

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He brought them down to the Red Sea — where, pursued by the Egyptians, escape seemed impossible — that they might realize their utter helplessness, their need of divine aid; and then He wrought deliverance for them. Thus they were filled with love and gratitude to God and with confidence in His power to help them. He had bound them to Himself as their deliverer from temporal bondage.

“But there was a still greater truth to be impressed upon their minds. Living in the midst of idolatry and corruption, they had no true conception of the holiness of God, of the exceeding sinfulness of their own hearts, their utter inability, in themselves, to render obedience to God’s law, and their need of a Saviour. All this they must be taught.” — Ellen G. White, Patriarchs and Prophets, p. 371.

“The law of God, spoken in awful grandeur from Sinai, is the utterance of condemnation to the sinner. It is the province of the law to condemn, but there is in it no power to pardon or to redeem.” — Ellen G. White Comments, The SDA Bible Commentary, vol. 6, p. 1094.

Discussion Questions:

  1. Think about this whole idea of promises, especially broken ones. How did you feel about those who have broken their promise to you? How much difference did it make whether a person intended to keep it and then either couldn’t or changed his or her mind, or if you realized that the person never meant to keep it? What happened to your level of trust after the promise was broken, whatever the reason? What does it mean to you to know that you can trust God’s promises? Or perhaps the question should be, How can you learn to trust God’s promises in the first place?
  2. In what ways are we in danger of being corrupted by our environment to the point that we lose sight of the important truths God has given us? How can we make ourselves aware of just what those corrupting influences are, and then how can we counteract them?

Summary: The giving of the law on Sinai did not invalidate the promise that God made to Abraham, nor did the law alter the promise’s provisions. The law was given so that people might be made aware of the true extent of their sinfulness and recognize their need of God’s promise to Abraham and his descendants.



Friday: Further Thought – The Priority of the Promise — 3 Comments

  1. I hope there are readers out there who sense like I do that all of the discussion on justification, righteousness, law, Abraham, wills, covenants, faith, promises, salvation is missing the basic point that Paul is trying to make, in Galatians, to his readers. I posted it in an earlier daily lesson.

    Here it again. What is the promise about? Take it personally and find the answer in the 3rd chapter. It was not addressed in last week's lesson.You don't have to wait until lesson 12 for the answer.

    This issue is important because most in churches don't understand what the gospel & salvation are really about. When one does, they really understand Rom 5:9&10 and Tit 3:5

    And if you think this is far fetched, let me remind you that 99% of Christians don't think the Sabbath commandment is valid.
    Remember what Jesus said in Matt 24:24?

  2. In answer to the question, "In what ways has God revealed Himself to you"?

    When my father died, he was killed in a motor vehicle accident which seemed quite senseless to me.

    When I woke up the morning after I had learned how it happened I felt very bad in my mind/heart. It seemed so senseless the way it happened and yet so absolute and permanent! I felt that I was not thinking and feeling like the son of God I had thought I was. I felt real bad and that I needed to know what my father's future was to be and WHY this happened. I knew I didn't feel right, but I did't know how to feel any different.

    So I asked God about it. The thought came to me that if I could see what God can see, I would be able to feel better. So I meekly asked if God would want me to see through His eyes in this situation.

    I was not disappointed. Soon after I made this request I was able to see, in my mind, light that seemed totally complete in spectrum and infinite thruout the universe. Then I could see something added to that which I felt I could describe as Love--an indescribable, infinite Love that only God could produce. The vision went on a few moments continuing to add more to the light and Love and ended with another visual feeling which, together with the rest of the experience, might be described as absolute security with infinite effects. At the end of this experience my questions were not answered, but it no longer mattered what the answers were. The security I was given was enough to change the feelings that I could not change shortly before.

    After this I have no need for grieving for my father's death because I feel that I can fully trust God that the outcome is and will be for the best.

  3. In Tuesday's lesson the author stated, under the title "The Purpose of the Law"

    "Some, believing that the word until in verse 19 (ESV) indicates that this law was only temporary, have thought the passage must refer to the ceremonial law, because the purpose of that law was fulfilled at the cross and thus came to an end. Though this makes sense by itself, it does not appear to be Paul’s point in Galatians. While both the ceremonial and moral law were “added” at Sinai because of transgression, we will see by considering the following question that Paul appears to have the moral law primarily in mind."

    Is the author saying that Paul is talking about the moral law? In Gal 3:10-14 when Paul talks about the curse of being under the law, is he talking about the moral law? Those curses are in what we call the "Ceremonial Law" not what we call the "Moral Law."

    Can we have it both ways?


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