Have you thought about the story of Job lately? Some people don’t like his story because it reminds them that following God doesn’t always make sense.
Bryce Pine tree photo by Maurice Ashton
Sometimes following God (being a Christian) finds us experiencing excruciating physical and/or mental distress, for which there is no logical explanation – surrounded by family and friends who say exactly the wrong things.
Here’s the thing, we want the “happily ever after” part of the story without having to [...]
[Thought questions for The Cosmic Conflict Over God's Character December 18, 2013]
1.The big picture. Can knowing about the great controversy between Christ and Satan bring meaning to your own existence? How? The sanctuary is a living example of the plan or strategy to win this controversy. Do you see this plan in every symbol and operation of the sanctuary?
Image © Lars Justinen from GoodSalt.com
2. Revolt in heaven. Probably one of the most-often asked questions about Christianity is “How could [...]
“Christ was treated as we deserve, that we might be treated as He deserves. He was condemned for our sins, in which He had no share, that we might be justified by His righteousness, in which we had no share. He suffered the death which was ours, that we might receive the life which was His. ‘With His stripes we are healed.’ ” (E.G. White, The Desire of Ages, p. 25)
Image © Educational Concepts from GoodSalt.com
I believe those are [...]
[Thought questions for Christ, Our Sacrifice November 13, 2013]
Image © Steve Creitz from GoodSalt.com
1. Substitution. Have you ever been a teacher or held another position where your work was essential that if you couldn’t be there, a substitute had to be found? Does that substitute sometimes prove to be of lesser ability? By contrast, in what ways is Jesus the infinitely superior substitute? What part do humility and obedience play in the substitution of His death for ours? What concept of [...]
I spent some time looking for a good example of atonement, this week. It was more difficult than I expected because so many of the examples I found equate atonement with forgiveness – synonyms. I have to admit, that I have thought of them as the same as well. But when I look at the description of the things that happened on the Day of Atonement, there’s something more going on there above and beyond forgiveness.
Image © Steve Creitz [...]
According to Exodus 25:8, what was the purpose of the earthly sanctuary in the wilderness? What amazing truth does this teach us about God’s love for us?
In the Garden of Eden, sin had broken the face-to-face relationship between God and humanity. Sin forfeited our first parents’ unhindered communion with God. However, the Creator still desired to draw us to Himself and to enjoy a deep covenant relationship with fallen humanity, and He began this process right there in Eden. Centuries [...]
“Christ was treated as we deserve, that we might be treated as He deserves. He was condemned for our sins, in which He had no share, that we might be justified by His righteousness, in which we had no share. He suffered the death which was ours, that we might receive the life which was His. ‘With His stripes we are healed.’” (E.G. White, Desire of Ages, p 25)
Image © Lars Justinen from GoodSalt.com
Go back and read that quote [...]
Further Study: “It had been difficult even for the angels to grasp the mystery of redemption—to comprehend that the Commander of heaven, the Son of God, must die for guilty man. When the command was given to Abraham to offer up his son, the interest of all heavenly beings was enlisted. With intense earnestness they watched each step in the fulfillment of this command. When to Isaac’s question, ‘Where is the lamb for a burnt offering?’ Abraham made answer, ‘God [...]
Though after Christ’s sacrificial death there was no more need for animal sacrifices,
Image © David Sorensen from GoodSalt.com
the New Testament does talk about the need for another kind of sacrifice instead.
According to these texts, what kind of offerings are we to bring to God today? Rom. 12:1-2; Phil. 4:18; Heb. 13:15-16; 1 Pet. 2:5.
Terminology from the sacrificial system worked very well in describing the early Christian concept of what it meant to live a life totally consecrated to God. [...]
Has modern technology removed the need for sacrifice? Now everyone can have their own way. When I was growing up back in the 20th century, my family had one black and white TV. On Monday nights, at our house we had to make compromises.
Jim and his wife Plessie, who knew you can’t have paradise without sacrifice.
My dad and me missed the first hour of Monday Night Football so that my mom and sister could watch Little House on the [...]