Friday, January 28, 2011

God Calls for Our Best Affections

No man can serve two masters for either he will hate the one, and love the other, or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon. Matt. 6:24.

Many are on the enchanted ground of the enemy. Things of the least importance - foolish social parties, singing, jesting, joking - engross their minds and they serve God with a divided heart... The declaration of Christ, "No man can serve two masters," is heeded.

One of the most marked features of the earth's inhabitants in the days of Noah was their intense worldliness. They made eating and drinking, buying and selling, marrying and giving in marriage, the supreme objects of life. It is not sinful, but the fulfillment of a duty, to eat and drink, i that which is lawful is not carried to excess... God Himself instituted marriage when He gave Eve to Adam. All God's laws are marvelously adapted to meet the nature of man. The sin of the antediluvians was in perverting that which in itself was lawful. They corrupted God's gifts by using them to minister to their selfish desires...

Excessive love and devotion to that which is itself lawful, proves the ruination of thousands upon thousands of souls. To matters of minor importance is often given the strength of intellect that should be wholly devoted to God. We need always to be guarded against carrying to excess that which, rightly used, is lawful. Many, many souls are lost by engaging in those things which, properly managed, are harmless, but which perverted and misapplied, become sinful and demoralizing.

If we are constantly thinking of and struggling for the things that pertain to this life, we cannot keep our thoughts fixed on the things of heaven. Satan is seeding to lead our minds away from God, and to center them on the fashions, the customs, and the demands of the world, which bring disease and death.

In this world we are to obtain a fitness for the higher world. God has left a trust with us, and He expects us to use all our faculties in helping and blessing our fellow men. He calls for our best affections, our highest powers. OHC

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Lesson 16 - The Cleansing of the Sanctuary

1. Paul taught what three subjects concerning the faith in Christ?
Acts 24:24, 25 _____________________________

2. Must only the wicked be judged?
Ecclesiastes 3:17 ___________________________

3. Who much appear before the judgment seat of Christ?
2 Corinthians 5:10 _________________________

4. How closely are our lives examined?
Ecclesiastes 12:14 _________________________

5. What kind of things will come up on the judgment?
Matthew 12:36 _________________________

" To him that ordereth his conversation aright will shew the salvation of God."
Psalm 50:23

6. Where must judgment begin?
1 Peter 4:17 ___________________________

"The house of God, which is the church of the living God." 1 Timothy 3:15.

"And if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God?' And if the righteous scarcely be saved, where shall the ungodly and the sinner appear?
1 Peter 4:17, 18.

"Wherefore he is able also to save them tot he uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them." Hebrews 7:25.

7. Who actually does the judging?
John 5:22 ____________________________

8. When Jesus comes, what will He bring with him?
Revelation 22:12 _________________________

The judgment for all who have ever accepted Christ as their Saviour actually takes place before He comes. This is illustrated in Matthew 22 in the parable of a marriage which a certain king made for his son. Before the wedding begins, the king inspects the guest to see if all are clothed with the wedding garment (verse 11). Notice the parallel in Revelation:

"Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready. And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the linen is the righteousness of saints."
Revelation 19:7,8.

In the parable, having that robe determined whether one was accepted or cast out. "Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven." Matthew 7:21.

"He that overcometh, the same shall be clothed in white rainment." Revelation 3:5.

They "which have not defiled their garments, " but "have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb." "shall walk with me in white: for they are worthy."
Revelation 3:4, 7 - 14.

This character examination is performed by Christ in the heavenly sanctuary. When His investigation is completed, everyone's destiny will be sealed. He will then announce: "He that is unjust, let him be unjust still: and he which is filthy, let him be filthy still: and he that is righteous, let him be righteous still: and he that is holy, let him be holy still. And behold I come quickly, and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be." "Revelation 22: 11, 12

9. What is the message that must be preached with a loud voice today?
Revelation 14:7 _________________________________

Paul spoke in terms of "judgment to come" (Acts 24:25).

The message for today is that "judgment is come" (Rev. 14:7)

When Jesus comes, "He hath judged" (Rev. 19:2).

This investigative judgment, which evaluates the lives of all who have ever professed faith in Christ, is completed before Jesus comes. It should not be confused with the judgment of the wicked by Christ and His saints, which occurs during the millennium; or the final judgment and punishment of the wicked, which takes place at the end of the 1000 years (see lesson 5)

10. What is to be more valued than having power over evil spirits?
Luke 10:19-20. _____________________________

11. Where are the names of God's people recorded?
Philippians 4:3 ____________________________

12. How has God recorded our good deeds?
Malachi 3:16 ________________________________

13. What else is marked before God?
Jeremiah 2:22 ________________________________

14 Where has God written a description of everyone?
Psalm 139:16 _____________________________

Everything we do is recorded in God's books. Some of the direct or implied references to the heavenly books of record include Nehemiah 13: 14, Job 16:19, Psalm 56:8; Hebrews 12:23; Revelation 13:8, 17:8, 21:27; and 22:19.

15. In the judgment, what are opened?
Daniel 7:9-10 ________________________________

16. What are the books used for in the judgment?
Revelation 20:12 _________________________________

17. If the books of record show that one turned back to sin, what will be his doom?
Ezekiel 18:24 ________________________________

18. What will be done to his name?

Exodus 32:33 __________________________________

19. In the end what will happen to him?

Revelation 20:15 _______________________________

20. What happened in Daniel's vision of the judgement?

Daniel 7:13 ____________________________________

This movement of Christ does not describe His coming to the earth, but rather to "the Ancient of days." The same scene is described by the prophet Malachi. Notice the question is asked, and is answered:

"Where is the God of JUDGMENT? Behold I will send my messenger, and he shall prepare the way before me; and the Lord, whom ye seek, shall suddenly come to his TEMPLE." Malachi 2:17 - 3:1.

Revelation 10 describes the bitter disappointment of those who expected Jesus to come in 1844 (see lesson 15). When he did not come, their question was, "Where is the God of judgment?" The Bible 's answer was, "The Lord, whom ye seek, shall suddenly come to his temple." Jesus moved in 1844 into the most holy place of the heavenly sanctuary to begin His work of investigative judgment, His final work before coming to earth to receive His bride.

From Daniel 8:19 we learned that the sanctuary would be cleansed "at the time appointed." Commenting on that, Paul says, "He hath appointed a day, in which he will judge the world." Acts 17:31. The time appointed for the judgment was the fulfillment of the 2300 days.

21. What is the Lord's work during this time?

Malachi 3:3 ______________________________

22. What will He do to the names of the overcomers?

Revelation 3:5 _______________________________

23. What will be blotted from their record?

Acts 3:19 ____________________________________

24. In the old yearly service, where did the live goat take the sins, thus permanently removing them from the sanctuary?

Leviticus 16:21 ______________________________

25. When the work of cleansing the heavenly sanctuary is finished, what will be poured out upon the earth?

Revelation 15:5 - 16:1 ______________________________

"And there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time: and at that time thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book." Daniel 12:1

"And it shall come to pass, that he that is left in Zion, and he that remaineth in Jerusalem, shall be called holy, even every one that is written among the living." Isiah 4:3.

In the Light of God's Word...

  • I understand that Christ's present work in the heavenly sanctuary involves an investigation of our lives.
  • I understand that this judgment will be completed before Christ comes to bring his rewards.
  • I desire for sin to be overcome in my life and blotted out of my record in heaven.

Next Lesson: How to Give Your Heart to Christ

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Faultless in Christ's Perfection

For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him. 2 Cor. 5:21.

Pardon and justification are one and the same thing. Through faith, the believer passes from the position of a rebel, a child of sin and Satan, to the position of a loyal subject of Christ Jesus, not because of an inherent goodness, but because Christ receives him as His child by adoption. The sinner receives the forgiveness of his sins, because these sins are borne by his Substitute and Surety. The Lord speaks to His heavenly Father, saying: "This is My child, I reprieve him from the condemnation of death, giving him My life insurance policy - eternal life - because I have taken his place and have suffered for his sins. He is even My beloved son. " Thus righteousness, stands faultless before God...

It is the Father's prerogative to forgive our transgressions and sins, because Christ has taken upon Himself our guilt and reprieved us, imputing to us His righteousness. His sacrifice satisfies fully the demands of justice.

Many feel that their faults of character makes it impossible for them to meet the standard that Christ has erected; but all that such ones have to do is to humble themselves at every step under the mighty hand of God; Christ does not estimate the man by the amount of work he does, but by the spirit in which the work is performed.

When He sees men lifting the burdens, trying to carry them in lowliness of mind, with distrust of self and with reliance upon Him, He adds to their work His perfection and sufficiency, and it is accepted of the Father. We are accepted in the beloved. The sinner's defects are covered by the perfection and fullness of the Lord our righteousness. Those who with sincere will, with contrite heart, are putting forth humble efforts to live up to the requirements of God, are looking upon the Father with pitying, tender love; He regards such as obedient children, and the righteousness of Christ is imputed unto them. OHC