2017 1st Quarter
Lesson 12, March 18-24, The Work of the Spirit
Wednesday, March 22
“And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life. These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God.” KJV, 1 John 5:11-13, emphasis added.
“For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father. The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.” KJV, Romans 8:15-17, emphasis added.
“Now he that hath wrought us for the selfsame thing is God, who also hath given unto us the earnest of the Spirit.” KJV, 2 Corinthians 5:5.
“Of Christ it is written, ‘Thou hast loved righteousness, and hated iniquity; therefore God, even thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows.’ God hates sin. It is the work of Satan to allure to evil. Satan has worked adroitly with bewitching power to fascinate the mind with iniquity, and make righteousness to appear undesirable. We need to remember continually that our secret sins are in the light of God’s countenance. Of ourselves we cannot see or realize how grievous are our secret sins in the sight of God. Under the influence of Satan we are led to pursue a course of evil until our hearts become hardened, our conscience seared, and our thoughts are brought into captivity to the prince of evil. But God is ever seeking to impress our hearts by his Holy Spirit, that we shall be convinced of sin, of righteousness, and of judgment to come. We may place our will on the side of God’s will, and in his strength and grace resist the temptations of the enemy. As we yield to the influence of the Spirit of God, our conscience becomes tender and sensitive, and sin that we have passed by with little thought, becomes exceeding sinful; for we begin to realize that our secret sins are in the light of his countenance.
“There is hope for the sinner. Christ uplifted upon the cross of Calvary furnishes that hope; for mercy has provided to the uttermost demand the victim that justice calls for, for man’s transgression. Through the merits of Jesus Christ, God can forgive sin, and be the justifier of him that believeth in Jesus. Precious truth of inestimable value to every repenting soul! Shall we not individually seek to appreciate, as far as it is possible, the fact that God forgives sin, that he loves us if we believe in Jesus, though we are erring, ignorant, and sinful, even as he loves his Son? The moment we ask for forgiveness in contrition and sincerity, God forgives. Oh, what a glorious truth! Preach it, pray it, sing it. Lift up the ‘Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.’ Say to the people, ‘Behold the man of Calvary!’ God is waiting to forgive all who come unto him with sincere repentance. The Psalmist says, ‘There is forgiveness with Thee, that Thou mightest be feared.'” (Ellen White, Signs of the Times, September 4, 1893, emphasis added.)
“Light is shining amid the moral darkness in this age of the world. The Holy Spirit is working on the hearts of men to convince them of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment to come. But those who refuse the light, and accept the excuses that Satan may frame as reasons why they should not obey the truth, will manifest Satanic enmity against those who obey God rather than man. Those who steadfastly follow the practice and customs of the world in the very face of light and truth, will obstinately oppose the commandments of God, and render unswerving loyalty to him who first rebelled against God, and was expelled from the courts of heaven; but in the face of the enmity of the world, those who truly believe in Christ will take him for their example in all things. Jesus says, ‘I have kept my Father’s commandments, and abide in his love.’ The beloved disciple said: ‘He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected; hereby know we that we are in him. He that saith he abideth in him ought himself so to walk, even as he walked. Brethren, I write no new commandment unto you, but an old commandment which ye had from the beginning.'” (Ellen White, Signs of the Times, June 11, 1894, emphasis added.)