Tuesday: God as Musician
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“ ‘Four thousand are to be gatekeepers and four thousand are to praise the Lord with the musical instruments I have provided for that purpose’ ” (1 Chron. 23:5, NIV).1

Try to envision the scene above: four thousand people playing musical instruments in praise of the Lord! That must have been an amazing worship service.

God’s artistic expression is not restricted to the representational arts. In Scripture we find that, along with sacred architecture, Israel’s liturgy was inspired by the Lord. God is [...]

Monday: God as Architect
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After God dramatically delivered Israel from slavery in Egypt, He brought them to Mount Sinai. There, He joined them to Himself in a sacred covenant. Among all the varied instructions He gave them there, how was beauty included? Exod. 25:1–9.1

The first half of the book of Exodus details the miraculous deliverance of Israel from Egypt. The second half of the book deals with issues that include beauty. The divine instructions of Exodus 25:1–9 are followed by Exodus 25:10–31:11, with God’s “blueprints” for the portable tent [...]

Sunday: God as Potter
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Image © Rolf Jansson from GoodSalt.com

“But now, O Lord, thou art our father; we are the clay, and thou our potter; and we all are the work of thy hand” (Isa. 64:8).1

When is the first time the Bible reveals God displaying His skills working with “clay”? Gen. 1:26, 27, 31; 2:7. 

Scripture opens with God creating the first humans out of the “dust of the ground.” In fact, the Hebrew word for “man,” adam is closely tied to the Hebrew word for “ground,” which is adamah—a linguistic link that enforces [...]

Sabbath: God as Artist
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Read for This Week’s Study: Isa. 64:5–8, Ps. 51:10, Heb. 8:1–5, 1 Chron. 23:5, Rom. 11:33–36, Acts 9:1–22.

Memory Text:

“One thing I have desired of the Lord, that will I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the Lord” (Psalm 27:4, NKJV).

Key Thought: God as artist? What does that mean? And what does it mean for us?

So far, we’ve looked at various aspects of the Lord: the Trinity, God’s holiness, and God as [...]

Thursday: Complying With Conditions
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Someone sits in a restaurant, consuming a large meal, filled with fatty food that they wash down with a soft drink. They then finish off with a large bowl of chocolate ice cream covered in hot fudge. That night, before going to bed (and having a little snack before then, too), they get on their knees to pray. Part of their prayer is, “O Lord, please help me lose weight.”1

What’s wrong with this picture?

The fact is, we can expect God [...]

Further Study: The Promise of Prayer
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“Prayer is the breath of the soul. It is the secret of spiritual power. No other means of grace can be substituted, and the health of the soul be preserved. Prayer brings the heart into immediate contact with the Well spring of life, and strengthens the sinew and muscle of the religious experience.”—Ellen G. White, Gospel Workers, pp. 254, 255.

“When we do not receive the very things we asked for, at the time we ask, we are still to believe that the [...]

Inside Story: The Noisy Neighbor
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 by Bobby Wagh

Raju heard the singing coming from the neighbor’s house and turned his music up as loud as possible. Sometimes he could still hear the singing, and he shouted abuses at the little group of Adventist believers who worshipped next door.[1. Love Thy Neighbor Pacific Press from GoodSalt.com]

Other neighbors avoided confronting Raju about his actions. They left the troublesome neighbor to the Adventists to handle. The believers visited Raju and offered to pray for him and his family. But their [...]

10: The Promise of Prayer – Thought Starters
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“God is my best Friend,” Judy said quietly to her friend Stacy as the adult Sabbath school was tranforming into the worship hour.1

“Mine, too,” Stacy replied. “The best Friend I’ve ever had. I talk to Him a lot.”

A set of shoulders in front of them paused and turned in their direction. It was Bob, one of the teachers for another adult class. “Be careful, ladies,” he said. “You talk like that too much and [...]

10: The Promise of Prayer – Teaching Plan
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Key Thought : Prayer is the most important way of communing with God and should be engaged in as much as possible. Christ showed that prayer attitudes such as humility, persistence, and acceptance of God’s will greatly helps us.

[Teaching Plan for "The Promise of Prayer" March 7, 2012]

1. Have a volunteer read Matthew 26:39-41.

A. Ask class members to share a short thought on what the main idea of this text is.
B. Why was Jesus asking not to do [...]

User Interface
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Do you know what a “user interface” is? If you do, please forgive me while I sound like I know what I’m talking about for a bit.

The “user interface” is how the user (human) interacts with an electronic device. For example, on some computers, the user interface is the keyboard and mouse; tablet computers and some phones have a touch screen interface. Sometimes, it could be a microphone. 1

Well, I’m thinking that prayer is our user interface [...]

Wednesday: Because You Do Not Ask
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One of the questions that those who pray often ask is, “Can my prayers really move God to do something that, otherwise, He might not do?” That’s a logical question. To answer it, all we can do is go to the Word of God and see what it says.1

Read James 4:2; Luke 11:9, 10; James 5:16–18. What do these texts say about our prayers and the actions of God?  

However much prayer changes us, and impacts our relationship with God and others, the Bible [...]

God Listened to Me!
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And it shall come to pass, that before they call, I will answer; and while they are yet speaking, I will hear. Isaiah 65:24

More exciting than getting what you ask for from God is just knowing He listens to you!

In the summer of 1991 I was enjoying my first full year of Literature Evangelism, as I was selling books all over Oklahoma and even the surrounding states. So far I was leading my conference in sales and hours worked. However, [...]