Sabbath School Lesson for June 29-July 5, 2019


Here are some areas we can learn about ministering to others by studying creation:

  • We  learn about God’s character through the natural world. (Sunday)
  • We learn how God felt about His creation and how to celebrate it with Him. (Monday)
  • We learn about the duties God gave to man at creation, both before and after sin. (Tuesday)
  • We learn of our broken relationship with God and how it can be restored. (Wednesday)
  • We learn of God’s intention for us to be our “brother’s keeper”. (Thursday)


In order to get a more in-depth understanding of what it means to minister to others, it is helpful to go back to the creation of our world for more information on what use God intends to make of our service. Only by knowing the source of this need, and the benefits and responsibilities that we have in alleviating it, can we effectively help others on their way to God’s Kingdom.

Knowing that God’s people are to spread the “everlasting gospel” to all the world causes us to want to know all we can about that gospel. This quarter we will see that it entails more than preaching vital biblical doctrines.

Jesus, as we will see, spent far more time alleviating suffering than He spent preaching. He demands that we also minister to those in need, including “the least of these” His brethren (Matthew 25:40). It’s the only way Jesus claims to know us. He said they will know we are His disciples by our love (John 13:35). That would be our love to those closest to us, but also to those in the community.

Key Text: “He who oppresses the poor reproaches his Maker, but he who honors Him has mercy on the needy.” Proverbs 14:31 NKJV

The mention of God, our Maker or Creator, reminds us that God identifies Himself with “the least of these”. It’s obvious that God is the One who suffers when we neglect to relieve the needs of others. After all, He made us.

Sunday: God–A Glimpse of Creation

Before we discount the accuracy of the creation story, as told to us by Moses in the book of Genesis, we should remember the attributes of God that are emphasized in Moses’ version of events at the beginning of time.

Here we see the character of God in full display. He is portrayed as…

  • a God of order (everything appeared at precisely the time that was needed for the sustaining of life–for instance, light and water were needed before plants were introduced, but the plants and animals needed each other for their survival, hence the short time, one day, between their appearance, etc.)
  • a God of creative beauty (as seen in the variety of species; all the senses are treated to the many colors and designs of plants and animals)
  • a God of relationships (there was a planned, harmonious existence between all that He created, with a designated purpose for each of His created beings)

It’s important to see all these features of God, if we and others are to benefit from our service to “the least of these”. Others must see this same God of order, beauty, and love in order to know the source of our good works.

Discussion Questions:

Read Genesis 1:1-3 and John 1:1-3. Why was it important for all three members of the godhead to be present at creation? Is having an accurate understanding of creation as important as understanding the birth and life of Jesus? Why, or why not?

Read Genesis 2:7 and 19. Although animals were made out of the ground, like man, what difference was there in the way they were created? Why was mankind given the gift of moral freedom, but not the animals?

Read Genesis 1:26, 27. How does belief in evolution affect the way we see people?

Monday: A Complete World

Having seen what was involved in the creation of our world, we must then come to an acknowledgment and desire to celebrate with our Creator what He has accomplished and for whom.

We are told that God experienced such a sense of satisfaction after each day of creation that He proclaimed everything He made on that day as “good”. Even Jesus later pointed to the beauties of nature, as He taught people about the bountiful gifts and blessings of God (Matthew 6:26-30).

Even though sin has marred much of God’s original creation, we are left with marvelous scenes to base our imaginative thoughts on what His coming Kingdom will be like.

Our service to others should never lose sight of God’s higher plans for His beloved people. They should see us celebrating all that is good, and especially God who makes these blessings possible. Keeping our minds on the earth made new will help divert us and others from some of the more unpleasant aspects of our present existence.

Discussion Questions:

Read Genesis 1:31. Why did God stop and declare each day of creation as good? What is the importance of our daily worship of God?

Read Psalm 148:1-4 and Exodus 20:10. Why was it important for the animals and all of creation to rest on the Sabbath, as well as man?

Read Genesis 2:2, 3. Why is it important for us to celebrate God’s rest? What do we rest from on the seventh day?

Tuesday: Stewards of the Earth

In our economically-driven culture we often think of stewardship as the faithful management of our incomes. But in studying the mandate God gave Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden, we might reconsider the importance of our stewardship of the earth.

  1. The first job Adam was given was to name the birds and animals (Genesis 2:19).
  2. Then, after Eve joined him, they were both instructed to fill the earth with their offspring and have dominion over all God’s creatures there (Genesis 1:28).
  3. In addition, they were to “tend and keep” the plant life that surrounded them so majestically in the Garden (Genesis 2:15).

Perhaps ministering to “the least of these” includes protecting the wondrous wild life and vegetation that God has bestowed on this earth for our benefit and enjoyment.

Discussion Questions:

Read Genesis 2:18-20. What was the purpose of Adam naming the birds and animals?

Read Genesis 1:26, 28-29 and Psalm 8:4-9. What does it mean to have dominion over the earth?

Read Psalm 24:1. For what reason do we need to take care of our world? How does God’s ownership affect our efforts to protect the earth?

Wednesday: A Broken World

Adam and Eve’s lack of trust in their Creator was a powerful factor in their eating the forbidden fruit. They were tempted to doubt God’s goodness, and instead to rely on themselves. This attitude and behavior is very prevalent in society today, even among God’s professed believers.

Behind the brokenness of our world, the desire to have more than God provides is still a problem too. Covetousness leads to many problems in life. It definitely affects how we take care of our world, and those who dwell on it.

Areas that have been broken by sin are…

  1. our relationship with God
  2. our relationship with each other
  3. our relationship with the rest of the earth

With the introduction of sin, the needs of the earth make our careful management of the planet even more demanding and necessary.

The curses that sin caused were announced by God in the third chapter of Genesis. But, with them, was a promise to repair the damage and restore our world to its original splendor.

Discussion Questions:

Read Genesis 3:8-10. How was the relationship between God and the first couple changed after sin? In what ways do people still “fear” God in a negative way?

Read Genesis 3:11-12, 16. How was the relationship between men and women changed after sin?

Read Genesis 3:17-19. How was the earth changed after sin?

Thursday: The Family Web of Humanity

After slaying his brother Abel, Cain asked the question of God, “Am I my brother’s keeper?” (Genesis 4:9). God did not answer Cain’s rhetorical question, and we often don’t stop and think about what that direct answer would have been.

But, in consideration of all God has commanded of His people since then, His answer would have been a resounding “YES, you ARE your brother’s keeper!” We are responsible for those around us, and our words and actions should reflect that concern for their peace and safety.

In case you are wondering who your brother is, after so many generations, remember that we are all linked by our common origin in God. The Sabbath is a reminder of this. Besides creation of the natural world being the reason for worshiping God, it is also a chief reason for treating others well. Because they too were created by God. We are all part of His creation.

Instead of blaming God for the suffering of humanity, let’s be aware of who’s really at fault for all the misery in the world, as seen in this statement:

 “If men would do their duty as faithful stewards of their Lord’s goods, there would be no cry for bread, none suffering in destitution, none naked and in want. It is the unfaithfulness of men that brings about the state of suffering in which humanity is plunged…God has made men His stewards, and He is not to be charged with the sufferings, the misery, the nakedness, and the want of humanity. The Lord has made ample provision for all.” ~Ellen G. White, Welfare Ministry, p. 16.

Discussion Questions:

Read Genesis 4:9 and Luke 10:36-37. Why are neighbor and brother the same and how are they to be treated?

Read Matthew 22:37-39. What does our love for others have to do with our love for God? Why does God require both?

Read Proverbs 14:31 and Matthew 25:45. Why does God identify so closely with the poor and downtrodden?


We can see the present state of disarray in our world–both in the disintegrating natural environment and in mounting humanitarian needs across the globe–and really get discouraged.

It helps to point people to the improved position we will be in when God sets up His kingdom here on the earth made new, but that is hard to imagine without looking at our created world as it was described to us by Moses in the book of Genesis.

This week, we did just that. We saw the original intentions God had for our planet. We were meant for a purpose, a very important one that involved a relationship with the Creator of the universe.

Having that relationship has become terribly complicated since Adam and Eve chose to disobey God. But, thanks to the merciful, loving Father that He is, we can allow God to restore us in that relationship with Him. And not only that, but our mission is to help others experience the same renewed relationship that blesses our existence.

That is what ministering to “the least of these” is meant to accomplish.

Next Week’s Lesson: Blueprint for a Better World

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