Sunday: Planting Much, Harvesting Little
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Read Haggai 1:1-11.

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What was happening here and, more important, why was this happening? Even more important, how might this same principle be happening to us today? How might we be guilty of doing the same thing?

“For over a year the temple was neglected and well-nigh forsaken. The people dwelt in their homes and strove to attain temporal prosperity, but their situation was deplorable. Work as they might they did not prosper. The very elements of [...]

Sabbath: First Things First!
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Read for This Week’s Study: Haggai 1, John 2:19, Ezra 3:1-6, Matt. 1:23, 12:6, Haggai 2, Luke 24:13-27.

Memory Text: “‘The silver is mine and the gold is mine, declares the Lord Almighty’” (Haggai 2:8, NIV).

Key Thought: Haggai’s message is simple: What are our priorities, and why is it so important to get them right?

Haggai’s book, one of the shortest in the Bible, was written at a critical time in the life of Judah. The exiles had returned from their captivity in Babylon almost 20 years before; yet, they seemed to [...]

Further Study: The Day of the Lord
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“With unerring accuracy the Infinite One still keeps account with the nations. While His mercy is tendered, with calls to repentance, this account remains open; but when the figures reach a certain amount which God has fixed, the ministry of His wrath begins. The account is closed. Divine patience ceases. Mercy no longer pleads in their behalf.”—Ellen G. White, Prophets and Kings, p. 364.

“Before the worlds unfallen and the heavenly universe, the world will have to give an account to the [...]

Inside Story: Standing Up for Jesus, part 1
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The ropes bit into Bien’s [bee-YEN] wrists as she struggled to free herself.

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Her brothers had tied her to the small boat before they left to get gas for the boat’s engine. They planned to take her to the small offshore island where their grandmother lived so she couldn’t attend the heretics’ church she had been visiting. She knew she had little time. She saw some friends passing nearby and called them to help her. [...]

09: The Day of the Lord – Thought Starters
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“The Lord will be awesome to them, for He will reduce to nothing all the gods of the earth: people shall worship Him, each one from his place, indeed all the shores of the nations.” Zephaniah 2:11 NKJV

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[Thought questions for The Day of the Lord May 29, 2013]

1. An inclusive belief. From what you have studied so far in the final books of the Old Testament, would you say that God’s concept of His [...]

Thursday: God’s Answer to Injustice
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Read Nahum 1-3.

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What verses especially teach us about the character of God? How can we apply what is seen here to our understanding of last-day events?

The prophecy of Nahum is God’s Word against the kingdoms of this world as represented by Nineveh. As the prophet looked at his world, he saw the hand of God moving against the Assyrian Empire. He announced that its capital city, Nineveh, would soon fall, never to rise again. Nahum [...]

Giants, Grasshoppers and Reality
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Reality is 90% perception, or so they say. I don’t know who comes up with these statistics, but it makes a lot of sense to me.

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When I was in sales, I led my district one year, but also went through a three-week drought with no sales at all. So what was my reality? Was I a good salesman who had a bad drought, or was I a bad salesman who just happened to get [...]

Wednesday: God’s Greatest Delight
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“‘The Lord your God is with you, he is mighty to save.

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He will take great delight in you, he will quiet you with his love, he will rejoice over you with singing.’” (Zeph. 3:17, NIV).

In the closing section of his book (Zeph. 3:9-20), Zephaniah turns from a theme of anger to one of restoration. Beyond the judgment, we come to God’s ultimate goals. When the nations have been disciplined, they will together call on [...]

09: The Day of the Lord – Teaching Plan
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Key Thought : Zephaniah’s message shows the nearness of a universal judgment including God’s own people, and a promise that the saved from all nations will enjoy God’s blessings..

[Teaching plan for The Day of the Lord May 27, 2013]

1. Have a volunteer read Zephaniah 2:1-3.

A. Ask class members to share a short thought on what the main idea of this text is.
B. How does a person seek righteousness and meekness?
C. Personal Application: What kind of situations have you [...]

Tuesday: A Corrupt City
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A Chinese proverb says that the darkest spot in the room is located right under the candle.

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This proverb could be applied to the moral state of Jerusalem in Zephaniah’s time. The prophet just has completed the pronouncement of divine judgments on Judah’s neighboring countries (see Zephaniah 2) such as Philistia in the west, Moab and Ammon in the east, Cush in the south, and Assyria in the east. Yet, he does not stop there. He [...]

Going Home
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Probably all of us can remember a time when we were homesick. Can you remember coming home after being away for more than just a weekend? You just can’t get there fast enough, right? I’ve even read that animals can sense when they are going home.

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“Shepherds say that sheep that have spent the summer in the high country and are on their way back to the shepherd’s fold anticipate their homecoming. Even though they [...]

Monday: The Humble of the Land
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In Zephaniah 2:1-3, we see the prophet’s call to repentance.

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Even though the destruction is imminent, there is still time to be sheltered from calamity, but only if the nation will repent. The wicked who refuse to repent will be consumed on the day of judgment like chaff. In Psalm 1:4 the wicked are also likened to chaff and, in the end, they perish.

With the words “Seek the Lord,” Zephaniah is encouraging those who humble themselves before God [...]