August 27 – September 2, 2000
MEMORY VERSE: “But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, Whom the Father will send in My name, He shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.” John 14:26.
STUDY HELP: Christian Service, 250–256.
INTRODUCTION: “There is no limit to the usefulness of those who put self to one side, make room for the working of the Holy Spirit upon their hearts, and live lives wholly consecrated to God, enduring the necessary discipline imposed by the Lord without complaining or fainting by the way. If they will not faint at the rebuke of the Lord, and become hardhearted and stubborn, the Lord will teach both old and young, hour by hour, day by day. He longs to reveal His salvation to the children of men; and if His chosen people will remove the obstructions, He will pour forth the waters of salvation in abundant streams through human channels.” Counsels to Parents, Teachers, and Students, 409, 410.
“Ye Shall Receive Power”
1 What is needed by the church to prepare it for its mission? Acts 1:8, first part.
NOTE: See Acts of the Apostles, 31.
2 What work has been entrusted to the Holy Spirit? John 16:6,7.
NOTE: “The Holy Spirit’s part of the work has been defined by our Saviour. He says, ‘He will convince the world of sin, of righteousness, and of judgement.’ The Holy Spirit is the convicter, and sanctifier as well. As none can repent of their sins until they are convicted, the necessity of uniting the Spirit with us in our labor to reach the fallen is apparent. All of our human abilities will be exercised in vain unless we are united to the heavenly intelligences. It is through the lack of a knowledge of the vitalizing truth, and the corrupting influence of error, that men are fallen so low, sunk in the depths of sinful degradation. Angels and men are to work in harmony to teach the truth of God to those who are unlearned therein, that they may be set free from the bonds of sin. It is the truth alone that makes men free.” Australasian Union Conference Record, April 1, 1898.
3 What kind of person is best fitted to do God’s work? Luke 1:15; Acts 4:8; Acts 4:31; Acts 6:3; Acts 9:17; Acts 11:24.
NOTE: “The grace of God takes men as they are, and works as an educator, using every principle on which an all-sided education depends. The steady influence of the grace of God trains the soul after Christ’s methods, and every fierce passion, every defective trait of character, is worked upon the molding influence of the Spirit of Christ, until the man has a new motive power, and becomes filled with the Holy Spirit of God, after the likeness of the divine similitude.” Healthful Living, 300, 301.
“God desires that the receivers of His grace shall be witnesses to its power. Those whose course has been most offensive to Him He freely accepts; when they repent, He imparts to them His divine Spirit, places them in the highest positions of trust, and sends them forth into the camp of the disloyal to proclaim His boundless mercy. Provision is made by God Himself for every soul that turns to the Lord, to receive His immediate cooperation. The Holy Spirit becomes His efficiency. It is the Spirit’s power that we need. This can do more for us in one minute than we can ever accomplish by talking. Only to those who wait humbly upon God, who watch for His guidance and grace, is the Spirit given. The power of God awaits their demand and reception. This promised blessing, claimed by faith, brings all other blessings in its train.” My Life Today, 47.
“Having Then Gifts Differing According to the Grace that is Given to Us”
4 After He ascended to heaven, what did Christ give His church to fit it for its work? Ephesians 4:8–13.
NOTE: See Testimonies, vol. 4, 618.
5 What work of preparation is needed in order to receive spiritual gifts? Acts 1:14; Acts 2:1; Acts 5:32.
NOTE: “Every individual must realize his own necessity. The heart must be emptied of every defilement and cleansed for the indwelling of the Spirit. It was by the confession and forsaking of sin, by earnest prayer and consecration of themselves to God, that the early disciples prepared for the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on the Day of Pentecost. The same work, only in greater degree, must be done now. Then the human agent had only to ask for the blessing, and wait for the Lord to perfect the work concerning him. It is God who began the work, and He will finish His work, making man complete in Jesus Christ.” Testimonies to Ministers, 507.
6 Will all receive the same gift? 1 Corinthians 12:4, 8–11; 17–19; 29–30.
NOTE: It has become common in some Christian groups to claim that all should receive an experience called “the baptism of the spirit.” The evidence for this experience is said to be “the gift of tongues,” that is, the practice of glossolalia. (See Great Controversy, 464.)
“He Will Guide You into all Truth”
7 What precious promise of guidance did the Lord give? John 16:13.
NOTE: See Acts of the Apostles, 52.
8 What other important work will the Holy Spirit do for God’s people? John 14:26; 1 Corinthians 2:13.
NOTE: “At all times and in all places, in all sorrows and in all afflictions, when the outlook seems dark and the future perplexing, and we feel helpless and alone, the Comforter will be sent in answer to the prayer of faith. Circumstances may separate us from every earthly friend; but no circumstance, no distance, can separate us from the heavenly Comforter. Wherever we are, wherever we may go, He is always at our right hand to support, sustain, uphold, and cheer.…The Comforter is called ‘the Spirit of truth.’ His work is to define and maintain the truth. He first dwells in the heart as the Spirit of truth, and thus He becomes the Comforter. There is comfort and peace in the truth, but no real peace or comfort can be found in falsehood.… Through the Scriptures the Holy Spirit speaks to the mind, and impresses truth upon the heart.” The Faith I Live By, 56.
“The Spirit Suffered Them Not”
9 How did the Holy Spirit choose the appropriate people for God’s work? Acts 13:1–4.
NOTE: See Acts of the Apostles, 161–163.
10 What other examples of the Holy Spirit’s leadership of the church’s work is given? Acts 16:6–10; Acts 8:26, 39.
NOTE: See Desire of Ages, 672.
“Holy Men of God Spake as They Were Moved by the Holy Ghost”
11 How does the Holy Spirit communicate with the church? 2 Peter 1:21.
NOTE: “When the Bible is made the study book, with earnest supplication for the Spirit’s guidance, and with a full surrender of the heart to be sanctified through the truth, all that Christ has promised will be accomplished. The result of such Bible study will be well-balanced minds. The understanding will be quickened, the sensibilities aroused. The conscience will become sensitive; the sympathies and sentiments will be purified; a better moral atmosphere will be created; and new power to resist temptation will be imparted. Teachers and students will become active and earnest in the work of God.” Counsels to Teachers, Parents and Students, 357.
12 What promises are we given that the Holy Spirit will provide the words needed by God’s people? Mark 13:11; Luke 12:11, 12.
NOTE: “The servants of Christ are to prepare no set speech to present when brought to trial for their faith. Their preparation is to be made day by day, in treasuring up in their hearts the precious truths of God’s Word, in feeding upon the teaching of Christ, and through prayer strengthening their faith; then, when brought into trial, the Holy Spirit will bring to their remembrance the very truths that will reach the hearts of those who shall come to hear. God will flash the knowledge obtained by diligent searching of the Scriptures, into their memory at the very time when it is needed.” Maranatha, 255. See also Christ’s Object Lessons, 139.