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Friday: Further Study — 4 Comments

  1. To me one of the biggest questions we could ask concerning this week's lessons, as we so often do pitying those poor disciples' misunderstanding about Jesus, is if we have any greater understanding than they had? As Paul chided the Jews in his churches, "Therefore you are inexcusable, O man, whoever you are who judge, for in whatever you judge another you condemn yourself; for you who judge practice the same things" (Rom. 2:1 NKJV). Even in Revelation the letter to the Laodicean church (Rev 3:14-22) is that while we think we have everything we actually have nothing. Modern man always has a rather arrogant attitude about ancient people, thinking that they were something less than we are.

    The fact is that we are no better and are actually greatly degenerated in many ways. While we are spiritual Israel grafted into the parent stock are we not the same as they were? Are we so much different than they were being like sheep? Do we really think that we have any better understanding than they had in spite of the fact that we have the New Testament and the writings of Ellen White? As it is written, "But as the days of Noah were, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be. For as in the days before the flood, they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, and did not know until the flood came and took them all away, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be" (Matt. 24:37-39 NKJV) and only eight people were saved out of possibly millions including good church people who helped build the ark.

    We look at the state of faith that they had 2000 yrs ago and think we are so much better and overlook some statements that say something very different. After presenting a parable concerning persistence in faith Jesus asked, "Nevertheless, when the Son of Man comes, will He really find faith on the earth?" (Lk. 18:8 NKJV). That question has to do with you and I. Would we really believe in Jesus if everything turned against us as it eventually will? What do we actually believe about Jesus and our relationship to Him - is it scriptural?

  2. Of course the nature of Christ is a delicate subject that needs a lot of humility and care. He was divine and human at the same time--a mystery for sure. But I think that most people tend to think of Him more in a divine sense than human.
    For example, there was one brother I knew who would not entertain the thought that it was possible for Jesus to sin. But if he couldn't sin, then his whole life and death was a farce. Gethsemane would be a lie. He would be just acting a part and pretending that Calvary was a trying ordeal. You will then rob the atonement of its sacrificial nature.
    It is because He could sin that places his life and death at the center of salvation. To see that He risked so much to save me. But if He risked nothing because He couldn't fail anyway, His subsequent exaltation was meaningless.

    Ellen White states, "He took upon Himself human nature, and was tempted in all points as human nature is tempted. He could have sinned; He could have fallen, but not for one moment was there in Him an evil propensity. He was assailed with temptations in the wilderness, as Adam was assailed with temptations in Eden." ( The SDA Bible Commentary, vol. 5, pp. 1128)

    What a risk! What a sacrifice!

  3. Ray, we naturally look and evaluate from our human point of view. To leave this mystery as unfathomable is against our nature. So the real question that comes to mind more often that any other, is found in Hebrews 2:17,18 and Hebrews 4:15. What are these verses saying? Specifics or generalizations. We compare the temptations and distractions that are multitudinous today, but were not in existence when Jesus was on earth. I believe that temptations are based on desire. We are not tempted by something we do not like. Hebrews 11:24.25 identifies sin as pleasurable. Even though it may be short lived.

  4. Amen brother Ray!

    To know how much Christ sacrificed for us, it make me think why we struggle so much to sacrifice so little in comparison. If fact what we are asked to sacrifice is to give up a life of very limited worldly pleasure for eternal life of glorious splendour.
    I pray that we see with spiritual discernment this life for what it really is and see what infinite beauty there is to behold and experience of the life made new only through our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.


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