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Why “In Light of the Cross Bible Study Guides”? — 6 Comments

  1. Many of the study guides over the years have been focused on Revelation, or Creation, or any number of seminars. The purpose being new conversions and baptism. Reading the Bible for your self and praying beforehand for understanding and guidance is a first choice for me. I have been reading Isaiah, a chapter or two each new day, with the goal to understand and apply if possible what is being read.

    • As Christ did, when He walked this earth, we need to meet people where they are, and seminars on subjects that interest people is one way to do so. In our local church, we have found that seminars on depression have been very effective in reaching out to the community. In everything, we should be wise as serpents and harmless as doves, always remembering that only Jesus saves - not biblical knowledge and not a healthy body.

  2. You state correctly that "Satan wants to skew our understanding of doctrine in order to warp our understanding of God’s love and make us reject Him".

    You then provide a couple of examples: "The punishment of the wicked and state of the dead are just a couple of examples of how false doctrines warp our understanding of God’s love".

    I would propose there is strong evidence that 'the punishment/death of Jesus on the cross for our sins' is another skewed doctrine of Satan designed to misrepresent God's nature and character and Jesus atonement. Two brief pieces of evidence in support of this suggestion are:

    Desire of Ages p 761: "Every sin must meet its punishment, urged Satan: and if God should remit the punishment of sin, he would not be a God of truth and justice."

    Isaiah 53:4 (NIV) "Surely he took up our pain and bore our suffering, yet we considered him punished by God, stricken by him, and afflicted."

    • Indeed. That's why Seventh-day Adventists teach that the Father was in Christ, reconciling the world to Himself. The cross was not evidence of God's anger, but of His love. And it was Satan who killed Christ, through His agencies. It was not the Father.

      On the other hand, the teaching of the substitutionary death of Christ is a prominent theme of the Bible from Genesis to Revelation. It is a foundational teaching of Christianity. And it is expressed in Isa 53:4 as well. The particularly wrong thought (at least in translation) was that "we considered him punished by God" for His own sins. The next verse than goes on to clarify. "5 But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed." Isa 53:5

      Satan mixes truth with error in order to "sell" the error. The glaring error in Satan's statement that Ellen White highlights is that God could not be just and justify the sinner. (There are other explicit references to the same thought.) Please read the sentence in context:

      Could one sin have been found in Christ, had He in one particular yielded to Satan to escape the terrible torture, the enemy of God and man would have triumphed. Christ bowed His head and died, but He held fast His faith and His submission to God. “And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of His Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night.” Revelation 12:10.
      Satan saw that his disguise was torn away. His administration was laid open before the unfallen angels and before the heavenly universe. He had revealed himself as a murderer. By shedding the blood of the Son of God, he had uprooted himself from the sympathies of the heavenly beings. Henceforth his work was restricted. Whatever attitude he might assume, he could no longer await the angels as they came from the heavenly courts, and before them accuse Christ’s brethren of being clothed with the garments of blackness and the defilement of sin. The last link of sympathy between Satan and the heavenly world was broken.
      Yet Satan was not then destroyed. The angels did not even then understand all that was involved in the great controversy. The principles at stake were to be more fully revealed. And for the sake of man, Satan’s existence must be continued. Man as well as angels must see the contrast between the Prince of light and the prince of darkness. He must choose whom he will serve.
      In the opening of the great controversy, Satan had declared that the law of God could not be obeyed, that justice was inconsistent with mercy, and that, should the law be broken, it would be impossible for the sinner to be pardoned. Every sin must meet its punishment, urged Satan; and if God should remit the punishment of sin, He would not be a God of truth and justice. When men broke the law of God, and defied His will, Satan exulted. It was proved, he declared, that the law could not be obeyed; man could not be forgiven. Because he, after his rebellion, had been banished from heaven, Satan claimed that the human race must be forever shut out from God’s favor. God could not be just, he urged, and yet show mercy to the sinner." Desire of Ages, p. 761

      • Hi Inge.

        It is true that the substitutionary death of Christ is a foundational teaching of Christianity. However, there is a wide range of conceptualisations regarding the precise nature of Christ's substitutionary death. So I can understand more clearly where you are coming from, can I ask what do you understand, Biblically, to be the precise nature of the substitutionary death of Christ?

  3. We all have temptations. Romans 3:23, All have sinned and fall short of the Glory of God. Also, Romans 8:1&2.There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus. Also, Verse 3- "He condemned sin in the flesh". Romans 5:12-15. The Holy Spirit helps us understand, 2Tiomothy 3:16. The texts noted above should help answer your question.


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