Sabbath School Lesson for April 11-17, 2020


  • Jesus relied on Scripture when He was tempted by Satan in the wilderness, following His baptism. (Sunday)
  • Jesus supported the “law and the prophets” (i.e. the Bible) during His ministry, focusing on love as its foundation. (Monday)
  • Jesus used the Scriptures to comfort and give hope to the disciples after His crucifixion. (Tuesday)
  • Jesus referred to historical events in the Bible as true and worthy examples for us today. (Wednesday)
  • The apostles, who ministered to the early church, relied on examples in the Scriptures as they preached the gospel to the Gentile world. (Thursday)


So many in the Christian world today downplay or minimize parts of the Bible. Certain stories aren’t seen as reliable or even pertinent to our spiritual experience today.

This week, however, we will see how Jesus and the apostles used the Scriptures repeatedly as they preached to the people of their time. For them the Scriptures would have been what we now know as the Old Testament.

If we believe that all the Bible is inspired, then surely there are trustworthy lessons for us in every event in both the Old and New Testaments. Jesus, especially, studied and used the Scriptures, providing us with the confidence we need to study deeply all that we find in the pages of our Bible today.

Memory Text: “But He answered and said, ‘It is written, “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God” ‘ “ Matthew 4:4 NKJV

Hymn for the Week: “Break Thou the Bread of Life”, p. 271, Seventh-day Adventist Hymnal

God often used bread, the most commonly eaten food in the world today, as a symbol of Christ, the Word.

The One who spoke our world into existence delivered manna, bread from heaven–John 6:30–to the Israelites as they wandered in the wilderness with Moses (in the Old Testament) and broke bread both with the hungry multitudes and His disciples in the upper room (in the New Testament). He refers to Himself as the Bread of Life–John 6:35.

This bread, which was found in the Holy Place in the temple on the table of shewbread, represents the word; and that word comes from the mouth of God, as our verse indicates. The Bible truly is the word of God.

Sunday: It Is Written

Jesus showed us that the only sure way to conquer temptation is to rely on the word of God. He trusted the Scriptures to answer all three temptations Satan brought to Him at the beginning of His ministry.

After forty days in the wilderness after His baptism, in his weakest human condition, the Word made flesh submitted to the word of God and showed us the protection it can give us against Satan’s fiercest temptations.

  1. When tempted to turn stones into bread, Jesus quoted Deuteronomy 8:3–Man shall not live by bread alone.
  2. When tempted to throw Himself from the pinnacle of the temple, He quoted Deuteronomy 6:16–Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God.
  3. When tempted to worship Satan to gain all the world’s kingdoms, Jesus quoted Deuteronomy 10:20–Thou shalt worship and serve the Lord only.

Jesus not only had read the Scriptures, He KNEW them. They were evidently hidden in His heart for the time He would need them (Psalm 119:11).

Bible Verses to Ponder and Share:

Psalms 119:11

  • Why is it useful to study and even memorize Scripture?
  • What are some of the Bible verses that are most meaningful to you?

Matthew 4:5, 6 and James 2:19

  • How does Satan misuse God’s word?
  • How is the trembling of the devils different than our “fear” of God?
  • In what ways can we believe in God and still be on Satan’s side of the conflict?

Hebrews 4:15

  • If we are tempted in the same way Jesus was, how can we rely on His word to keep from sinning also?

Monday: Jesus and the Law

When Jesus quoted the Old Testament to answer Satan’s temptations, He was submitting Himself to the authority of the word of God. In the same way, He submitted to the law, when He remained obedient to it all through His lifetime here on earth (Hebrews 4:15).

Several times, Jesus endorsed the Scriptures, calling them “the law and the prophets” (Matthew 5:17). This was a shortened way of referring to the law, prophets, and writings, or the three divisions of the Old Testament Scriptures–the only ones in existence at that time.

One of the reasons Jesus was sent to earth was obviously to show us that the foundation of keeping the law, or the words of God, was love. Without love for God, stemming from “a broken and a contrite heart” (Psalm 51:17), it is impossible to truly keep His words, or know Him in the most meaningful way possible.

Jesus plainly spoke about the Ten Commandment law, when asked which was the great commandment. His reply included not just the Ten Commandments, but the Law and the Prophets as well. Yes, love is shown throughout the Bible–God’s love for a dying world. See Matthew 22:36-40.

Bible Verses to Ponder and Share:

Matthew 5:17

  • Why was Jesus accused of destroying the Law and the Prophets?
  • In what way did Jesus fulfill the Scriptures?

Matthew 22:37-40, Deuteronomy 6:5, and Leviticus 19:18

  • How did Jesus use the Old Testament to uphold love as the foundation of the law?
  • Why is it important for us to see the same God throughout the Bible, and not allow ourselves to focus on our doubts and misgivings about passages we may not understand fully?
  • How can we avoid having our cultural heritage, family upbringing, or philosophy of life keep us from seeing God clearly in the Bible?

Tuesday: Jesus and All Scripture

There are times when we may feel doubt, confusion, and even skepticism about what they read in the Scriptures. This must have been what it was like for the disciples, right after Jesus’ cruel death on the cross. How could they not feel disappointed, confused, and even bitter, for the unexpected way things had turned out for their beloved Messiah?

Jesus did not leave His disciples adrift for long, however. He began by appearing to two of them who were walking on the road to Emmaus. Instead of showing them instantly who He was, He chose to open their minds to the meaning of recent events by pointing them to the Scriptures.

How useful the Scriptures had been to Jesus throughout His ministry. They had helped Him survive the difficult temptations He faced right after His baptism and were just as useful to Him in answering the difficult questions posed to Him by relentless, religious authorities who sought to trick Him.

After the resurrection, they became comforting words and gave His followers hope in a Messiah who would return and end this nightmare of sin in which we find ourselves.

Today, we are still going to the Bible, the word of God, to find solace and peace in the most troubling times of our lives.

Bible Verses to Ponder and Share:

Luke 24:25-27

  • How closely had Jesus’ life fulfilled the Messianic prophecies in the Old Testament, and how would that have given hope to the disciples walking with Christ that day?

Luke 24:44, 45

  • How important is it for us to study all three parts of the Old Testament, included in Jesus’ statement here–the Law, the Prophets, and the Psalms (considered the three divisions of the Old Testament Scriptures at the time)?

Matthew 28:18-20

  • How are all three persons of the godhead involved in our command to teach people “all things that I have commanded you”?
  • How was Jesus’ commission to us a reminder that Bible study is important to knowing and serving God?

Wednesday: Jesus and the Origin and History of the Bible

Many times, the Gospel accounts reveal that Jesus spoke about events in the Scriptures as true stories, not just fables made up by its authors. To Him, they were, in fact, the words of God.

When He was once asked about divorce by some Pharisees, Jesus referred to a verse we find in Genesis 2:24. The way He words His response (in Matthew 19:4, 5) indicates that “God said”, or “He who made them at the beginning” said:, and not that “Moses wrote”. We, therefore, get the impression that Jesus considered the Scriptures, although written by God’s prophets, as God’s word, not man’s.

Here are some instances when Jesus used the Old Testament Scriptures as examples we can trust. He used them…

  • to support how He and His disciples kept the Sabbath (Matthew 12:1-5)
  • to compare the world of Noah to how it will be before the Second Coming (Matthew 24:38)
  • to explain divorce (Mark 10:6-8)
  • to show the loneliness of being a prophet, using stories about Elijah and Elisha (Luke 4:25-27)
  • to point out the deaths of His prophets, mentioning Abel and Zechariah by name (Luke 11:51)

Bible Verses to Ponder and Share:

Matthew 19:4, 5 and Genesis 2:24

  • How was Jesus confirming that the words Moses wrote were the words of God?
  • How might these verses help us know what Jesus believed about the Creation story found in Genesis?

Matthew 5:11, 12 and Isaiah 53:7, 8

  • Why do the stories of these heroic prophets deserve our attention, and how do they point to the sufferings of Christ?

Thursday: The Apostles and the Bible

Following Jesus’ example, there are many references in the New Testament beginning with the phrase “it is written”. As a matter of fact, the Old Testament is quoted hundreds of times by the apostles, including 400 times from Isaiah, 370 from the Psalms, and 220 from Exodus alone.

These quotes, along with the many allusions, motifs, and themes that point us to the Old Testament Scriptures, are convincing evidence that the Scriptures are the foundation of the gospel message the apostles preached to the Gentile world.

One only need go to Hebrews 11, known as the faith chapter, to recognize the importance of those prophets of old. One might think of this as the hall of fame for such faithful Bible characters as Abel, Enoch, Noah, Abraham, Isaac, Joseph, Moses, Joshua, Rahab, Gideon, Samuel, David, and the rest. They are all recognized for their faithfulness in following God.

How can we ignore their contribution to the church? And how can we not see the whole Bible as the instrument designed to build our faith, as well? It was certainly on the hearts of those laboring to establish the Christian church, following Jesus’ death and resurrection.

Bible Verses to Ponder and Share:

Acts 4:24-26 and Psalm 2:1, 2

  • In what way did these early Christians express their belief that God spoke through David?
  • Why are the Psalms still so popular and often read by Christians?
  • What are your favorite Psalms?

Romans 9:17 and Exodus 9:13, 16

  • Why would it say in this verse that “Scripture says to the Pharoah”, and not “God says to Pharoah”? How does this elevate the Scriptures?

Galatians 3:8

  • How do we see here the connection between the Old and New Testaments in what was promised to Abraham?
  • How was Abraham’s promise from God fulfilled, and how did this affirm the apostles’ belief in the Old Testament Scriptures?

Friday: What We Have Learned This Week

Here’s some of the things we discovered in our lesson this week…

  • Jesus used the Scripture to overcome temptation–and so can we. (Sunday)
  • Jesus supported keeping the law, part of the Scriptures, out of love–and so can we. (Monday)
  • Jesus gave comfort to his disciples, using the Scriptures–and so can we. (Tuesday)
  • Jesus shared the stories and examples in the Old Testament–and so can we. (Wednesday)
  • The apostles laced their preaching with references to the Old Testament Scriptures–and so can we. (Thursday)

Let’s continue to use the whole Bible to overcome the world, to know and keep the law with love in our hearts, to comfort each other, and to share the gospel message to a very needy world.

This is how Jesus and the apostles were able to reach so many people. And it is how we will grow our relationship with God, allowing us to reach countless others, as well.

We must uphold with confidence sola Scriptura, “the Bible alone” as our standard for behavior and doctrine, just as the Protestant reformers who came before us.

Next Week’s Lesson: The Bible–the Authoritative Source of Our Theology

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