Daily Lesson for Friday 17th of November 2023
Read Ellen G. White, “The Good Samaritan,” pp. 497–505, in The Desire of Ages.
There are many hungry, needy, and mistreated people in our world today. You can do your part, however “small” it might seem to be. We are not going to solve all the world’s problems before Jesus returns. We haven’t been called to do that. But until then, our work can be as basic as helping someone you know who does not have enough food; or it can be helping a member in the church who is facing injustice, even bigotry, which remains a real problem in our world, even today.
“Pure religion and undefiled before the Father is this: ‘To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world.’ Good deeds are the fruit that Christ requires us to bear: kind words, deeds of benevolence, of tender regard for the poor, the needy, the afflicted. When hearts sympathize with hearts burdened with discouragement and grief, when the hand dispenses to the needy, when the naked are clothed, the stranger made welcome to a seat in your parlor and a place in your heart, angels are coming very near, and an answering strain is responded to in heaven. Every act of justice, mercy, and benevolence makes melody in heaven. The Father from His throne beholds those who do these acts of mercy, and numbers them with His most precious treasures. ‘And they shall be Mine, saith the Lord of hosts, in that day when I make up My jewels.’ Every merciful act to the needy, the suffering, is regarded as though done to Jesus. When you succor the poor, sympathize with the afflicted and oppressed, and befriend the orphan, you bring yourselves into a closer relationship to Jesus.”—Ellen G. White, Testimonies for the Church, vol. 2, p. 25.
- How can we make sure we understand that the command to love God and others is not salvation by works? When we consider who Jesus is, and what He did for us on the cross (see Philippians 2:5-8), why is the idea that anything we can do to earn or merit salvation so great an error? How can we learn to distinguish between working for salvation, which is a fatal mistake, and revealing in our lives the salvation that we already have in Jesus?
- How can we learn to recognize some of the inherent prejudices we might have toward those who are different from us?
- Other than those passages studied in this week’s lesson, what other scriptural support do you find for the need to show kindness to others, no matter who they are?