SDA Sabbath School Lessons
Tuesday October 15, 1996

God's Universal Plan Through His Sanctuary
(Isa. 56:1-8)

Jesus taught the woman at the well that "salvation is of the Jews" (John 4:22). This did not mean that the Jewish people had the right to determine who was to be saved, but that the Saviour would come as a Jew. It also meant that to Israel as a people, God had committed the knowledge of the Saviour and His salvation (Deut. 4:5-6; Rom. 3:1, 2).

Specify two things the Jews were to do with the knowledge God had given them.   Deut. 30:15, 16; Isa. 49:6.

By demonstrating in their own lives the character and teachings of Christ, Israel would be a kingdom of priests, whose wisdom and spiritual purity would make them the religious educators of the world (Exod. 19:6; Mal. 2:7). But because of their apostasy at Sinai, God gave the priestly role to the Levites. Yet His objective for the nation remained the same.

What did the Lord show His people regarding the meaning of the sanctuary service for those who were not native-born Jews?  Isa. 56:1-8.

Had the Israelites remained faithful, people from all nations would have come to worship God in the temple.  But Israelite fascination with other gods dimmed the lights of the sanctuary, making it difficult for others to find their way.

When fleeing from Saul, David took great comfort in his memories of the sanctuary (Ps. 27:1-6; compare 43:3, 4; 63:1-4).  From the sanctuary services he had learned the way of salvation; an education that would sustain him in the days ahead.  "The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear?  The Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?  When the wicked came against me to eat up my flesh, my enemies and foes, they stumbled and fell.  Though an army should encamp against me, my heart shall not fear."  "Wait on the Lord; be of good courage, and He shall strengthen your heart"  (Ps. 27:1-3, 14, NKJV). 

What does the sanctuary mean to you?