If You Love Me….
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Image © Pacific Press from GoodSalt.com

When the officer heard about Jesus, he sent some respected Jewish elders to ask him to come and heal his slave.  So they earnestly begged Jesus to help the man. “If anyone deserves your help, he does,” they said,  “for he loves the Jewish people and even built a synagogue for us.”  Luke 7:2-5 NLT

This story illustrates the difference between the gospel and legalism. Legalism tells us the officer has given so much that he deserves special treatment from Jesus. Meanwhile the gospel [...]

HopeSS: The Law of God
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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.

Expanded and Explained
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A. J. Jacobs spent a year living what he considered to be “biblically.” He grew his hair and beard long and walked around New York City dressed like Moses, looking for people who were breaking any of the rules of the Old Testament.

On day 62 he went to Central Park to follow the command to stone adulterers. In Central Park, Mr. Jacobs met a man who looked to be in his mid-70s, sitting on a park bench. He walked up [...]

Wednesday: Jesus and the Fifth Commandment
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Image © Sally Weimer from GoodSalt.com

During another encounter Jesus had with the scribes and Pharisees (Matt. 15:1-20; see also Mark 7:1-13), they questioned Him about a tradition of the elders, one not found in the Law of Moses. This tradition stipulated that one should ritualistically wash his hands before eating, something Jesus’ disciples had neglected to do. Christ immediately responded by citing another tradition of the Pharisees, one that invalidated the fifth commandment.

Image © Sally Weimer from GoodSalt.com

Before analyzing Christ’s argument, we need to [...]

10: The Law of God – Lesson Plan
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Key Thought : God’s consistent law provides stability and security. God’s grace facilitates living in accordance with its provisions.

[Lesson Plan for The Law of God September 1, 2014]

1. Have a volunteer read Matthew 5:17-19.

a. Ask class members to share a thought on what the most important point in this text is.
b. What did it mean for Christ to fulfill the law? Why do some people think that fulfilling the law meant abolishing it?
c. Personal Application: How can you be [...]

Tuesday: Jesus and the Seventh Commandment
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How did Jesus expand the meaning of the law, as seen in Matthew 5:27-28? What did He say in Matthew 5:29-30? How are we to take these words?

Image © Justinen Creative from GoodSalt.com

In this passage Christ referred to two commandments: the seventh and the tenth. Until then, the Israelites considered adultery to be only the overt physical sexual act with another person’s spouse. Jesus points out that in reality, because of the tenth commandment, adultery would include lustful [...]

Monday: Jesus Deepened the Meaning of the Law
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Image © Krieg Barrie from GoodSalt.com

After establishing the perpetuity of the Ten Commandments, Jesus continued His Sermon on the Mount, now setting forth a few specific examples of Old Testament laws. People had so greatly misunderstood these specific commandments that Jesus felt the vital need of explaining their true meaning.

Image © Krieg Barrie from GoodSalt.com

What contrast did Jesus make with each aspect of the law mentioned in the Sermon on the Mount? To what authority did He appeal in each case? Matt. 5:21-44.

Note [...]

Sunday: Jesus did not Change the Law
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What does Matthew 5:17-19 teach about Jesus’ attitude toward the law?

Image © Pacific Press from GoodSalt.com

Although the word law is often used to refer to the first five books of the Bible (also known as Pentateuch or Torah), in this case the context seems to indicate that He was referring primarily to the Ten Commandments. When saying He had not come to destroy the law, Jesus is literally saying, I have not come to make invalid or abolish [...]

Sabbath: The Law of God
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Read for This Week’s Study: Matt. 5:17-19, Matt. 5:21-44, Mark 7:9-13, Matt. 19:16-22.

Memory Text: If you love Me, keep My commandments (John 14:15, NKJV).

Though many leaders in Israel highly exalted the law, some misunderstood its purpose, believing that they could obtain righteousness by obeying the law. As Paul was to write: For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God (Rom. 10:3).

This [...]

Jesus and Laodicea
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Marcie’s husband Jack had become increasingly violent, and when he hit her and knocked her over, she was afraid. She scrambled to her feet and ran out the door. Running, she felt so helpless and confused. What was she to do? Where was she to go?  It was early Saturday morning, and the streets were still. Then she remembered the church a couple of blocks away. She had seen people at the church on Saturdays. Perhaps someone there could help [...]

Inside Story: May’s New School
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May
Courtesy of GC office of Adventist Mission

May was overwhelmed in her new school. She had classes on topics that she had never studied before, and she didn’t know enough English to understand what her teachers were saying. She hung her head and felt like crying. Her teacher touched her shoulder and asked if she needed help. May nodded, embarrassed. Don’t worry, her teacher said softly. I’m here to help you. Tell me what you need.

MayCourtesy of GC office of Adventist Mission

May had never experienced such [...]

Friday: Further Study: Our Mission
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Further Study: Ellen G. White, Go Teach All Nations, p. 818-828, in The Desire of Ages; The Great Commission, p. 25-34, in The Acts of the Apostles. Every true disciple is born into the kingdom of God as a missionary. He who drinks of the living water becomes a fountain of life. The receiver becomes a giver. The grace of Christ in the soul is like a spring in the desert, welling up to refresh all, and making those who [...]