2017 1st Quarter
Lesson 12, March 18-24, The Work of the Spirit
Monday, March 20
“Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him. For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life. And not only so, but we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement.” KJV, Romans 5:9-11, emphasis added.
“Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession. For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.” KJV, Hebrews 4:14-16, emphasis added.
“For I through the law am dead to the law, that I might live unto God. I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me. I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain.” KJV, Galatians 2:19-21, emphasis added.
“Whom Christ pardons, He first makes penitent, and it is the office of the Holy Spirit to convince of sin. Those whose hearts have been moved by the convicting Spirit of God see that there is nothing good in themselves. They see that all they have ever done is mingled with self and sin. Like the poor publican, they stand afar off, not daring to lift up so much as their eyes to heaven, and cry, ‘God, be merciful to me the sinner.’ Luke 18:13 , R.V., margin. And they are blessed. There is forgiveness for the penitent; for Christ is ‘the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.’ John 1:29. God’s promise is: ‘Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.’ ‘A new heart also will I give you…. And I will put My Spirit within you.’ Isaiah 1:18; Ezekiel 36:26, 27.” (Ellen White, Thoughts from the Mount of Blessing, 7, 8, emphasis added.)
“The proud heart strives to earn salvation; but both our title to heaven and our fitness for it are found in the righteousness of Christ. The Lord can do nothing toward the recovery of man until, convinced of his own weakness, and stripped of all self-sufficiency, he yields himself to the control of God. Then he can receive the gift that God is waiting to bestow. From the soul that feels his need, nothing is withheld. He has unrestricted access to Him in whom all fullness dwells. ‘For thus saith the high and lofty One that inhabiteth eternity, whose name is Holy; I dwell in the high and holy place, with him also that is of a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the heart of the contrite ones.’ Isaiah 57:15.” (Ellen White, Desire of Ages, 300, emphasis added.)
“In order to keep the world in its proper subordination, it is necessary to have more than a mere casual, nominal faith in Christ. Many might give assent to the fact that Jesus was the Son of God, and yet fail to have saving faith. Jesus must be all in all to the soul. You must believe in him as your personal and complete Saviour; for unless you take him for all that he is,—a complete Saviour,—you will not represent him to the world as he is. Everywhere throughout the churches of Christendom there is a dearth of spirituality, a lack of vital godliness, and those who profess religion are many of them like dry bones. They need the breathing of the Spirit of God upon them, that they may live. It is because the aid of the Holy Spirit is not united with the efforts of men, that there is not more true piety in the church; for the Holy Spirit is to convince the world of sin, of righteousness, and of judgment to come. But even in the church sin is suffered in our brethren. Men are not faithful to rebuke evil in the professed servants of Christ. One does not go to another in the spirit of love and meekness, seeking to restore such as are erring from the faith. They do not go to the erring one, and say, ‘My brother, you are not representing the character of Christ. You do not manifest his self-denial and self-sacrifice. You need tenderness of heart, Christian politeness, that you may manifest the courtesy that Jesus has enjoined upon us in his word.’ But instead of going to your brethren when you see defects of character, you go to others to talk over their imperfections. This is not fulfilling the commands of Christ.” (Ellen White, Review and Herald, February 23, 1892, emphasis added.)