Sabbath School Lesson for April 4-10, 2020


The Bible is most helpful to the reader when approached with an appreciation for its divine origin. Here’s how our lesson covered the origin and nature of the Bible:

  • God must first be regarded as holy and divine, before the Bible can be seen as holy and divine. (Sunday)
  • It helps to know how inspiration works on the hearts of men, and guides how they express God’s words in their own language. (Monday)
  • There are many reasons why God told the prophets to write down His words. (Tuesday)
  • Christ and Scripture share many common elements, but the parallel isn’t perfect. (Wednesday)
  • Approaching the Bible with faith is the best way to benefit from the truths it contains. (Thursday)


From a literary standpoint, we might imagine the Bible as being published from heaven, with God as its editor. He has commissioned several prophets, or messengers/authors, to contribute by writing down the information He thinks necessary for His reading audience.

They, of course, then share the knowledge given to them in their own language and words. The thoughts and final manuscript are totally in the hands of the divine editor though.

Seeing the Bible this way, as a combination of divine and human effort, is the best way for us to understand the truths God is trying to convey to us.

Letting the book itself show us the way to interpret its messages will ensure that we get the correct view of God’s character that He desires us to have. That we need to have in order to secure our salvation from this sin-sick world.

Key Text: “For this reason we also thank God without ceasing, because when you received the word of God which you heard from us, you welcomed it not as the word of men, but as it is in truth, the word of God, which also effectively works in you who believe.” 1 Thessalonians 2:13 NKJV

Verse to Memorize:“Sanctify them by Your truth. Your word is truth.” John 17:17 NKJV

Hymn for the Week: “Cover With His Life”, p. 412, in our church hymnal

Recognizing and respecting the Bible as God’s holy word will dispel man’s tendency to interpret it on his own. If the book came from Him, He will show us how we are to mine the truths that are in its pages. Trust the divine editor.

Sunday: The Divine Revelation of the Bible

There must be something divine in the word of God. Paul calls it the “Holy Scriptures” (Romans 1:2 and 2 Timothy 3:15).

Calling upon the Father and the Holy Spirit, it is, therefore, possible to glean correct doctrine and truths from the sacred pages of the Bible. As a matter of fact, it is only with divine help that we can do so accurately.

The Bible is a trustworthy document for men and women, anywhere and any time. It is because “holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit” (2 Peter 1:21) that we can trust the information given to us there by God.

And that information has many practical uses. 2 Timothy 3:16, 17 tells us it is profitable for doctrine, but also for correction and instruction in righteousness. The lessons learned will equip us for doing the good we are called to do.

The many revelations in the Bible also provide us with comfort and hope during times of trial. We can rest assured that God knows the beginning from the end and guarantees His followers a happy ending (Isaiah 46:10).

Bible Verses to Ponder and Share:

Romans 1:2 and 2 Timothy 3:15

  • What makes the Scriptures sacred or holy?
  • What benefit is there in learning about God in our childhood?

2 Timothy 3:16, 17

  • Can we safely believe that not all parts of Scripture are inspired? Why, or why not?
  • What is the purpose of the Bible?
  • For what do we need equipped, and why?

2 Peter 1:16 and Matthew 17:1, 2

  • Why are eyewitness accounts so important, and yet why do they often not agree in every detail?
  • What event made Peter an eyewitness of Christ’s majesty?

Monday: The Process of Inspiration

In order to comprehend what we read in the Bible, we must have a general understanding of how inspiration works. We saw last week how God inspired men, allowing them to write down their experience with God in the language of their peers .

This combination of divine agencies working with human instruments explains how we should interpret the Bible and even more effectively deal with some of its more difficult passages.

Although all Scripture was divinely inspired, there may be parts that are no longer applicable to us today, such as the feast days which foretold the Messiah’s birth and death.

Even when parts of the Bible aren’t directly affecting us today, however, we can learn lessons from reading them. The cultures may be different, but there are sound, character-building principles in almost all the stories in the Bible. Nothing that God has allowed preserved in the sacred text is wasted. Everything points in one way or another to our sure salvation through the Messiah, the Lamb of God.

Bible Verses to Ponder and Share:

2 Timothy 3:16

  • What does it mean to be inspired by God?
  • Where do these “holy men” get their holiness?
  • In what way does God use inspiration to get the word of God to His people?

2 Peter 1:20, 21

  • Why is knowing how inspiration works important in determining the way we interpret the Bible?

Genesis 3:14, 15 and Revelation 12:17

  • How do these verses help show how there is unity in the message, from beginning to end?
  • What is the main message God has for us in the Bible?

Tuesday: The Written Word of God

There are many reasons God told His prophets to relay His messages to people in writing. The Bible itself mentions several times that He wanted His official commands and laws communicated this way.

Seeing something in writing brings with it a sense of confirmation and authenticity. Also, writing it down ensures that…

  • it will be remembered more accurately than verbal communication alone
  • it will reach a wider audience; more people will have access to it
  • it will last longer, even for generations to come
  • it will be less likely to be disputed
  • it will be a trustworthy reference for long periods of time

Even if someone can’t read, it’s possible for someone to read God’s word aloud to him. Yes, having a solid document, such as the Bible, makes it a valuable aid when we are trying to follow God’s will.

Bible Verses to Ponder and Share:

Exodus 24:4 and Joshua 24:26

  • Why were these early prophets told to write down the law and commandments God had given them?
  • Why is the law so valuable to God’s people?

Jeremiah 30:2 and Revelation 1:19

  • Why were these later prophets, in both the Old and New Testaments told to write down their prophetic visions and dreams?
  • In what way are prophecies valuable to God’s people?

Revelation 22:18, 19

  • How has God helped preserve His Holy Bible throughout all the centuries before and after Christ?
  • What’s the difference, if any, in altering the Word of God and misinterpreting it?
  • What assurance do we have that people have not significantly altered God’s Holy Bible?
  • Is there a need for newer translations that speak the language of current readers, and why is it important to use caution in selecting which translation to use?

Wednesday: The Parallel Between Christ and Scripture

As we have seen, the Bible comes from God, our divine Creator, but is delivered to us through fallible human beings, dedicated to relaying God’s messages to the world.

This combination of human and divine effort reminds us of the nature and work of Jesus Christ, the Messiah and Savior of the world. He lived on earth for a specific span in history, but His eternal divine nature allows Him to be present for all people throughout time.

The Bible, likewise, may have been written to benefit specific groups of people, but its divine permanence has allowed it to remain a blessing to countless populations all over the world.

Jesus was subject to all the human infirmities we encounter during life, yet His divinity was evident from the fact that He remained sinless while serving us here on earth. He was truly the Son of God and the Son of Man, as the Bible testifies.

So, as we strive to know how to interpret God’s word, let’s be reminded that although God has inspired the men who wrote the Bible and the way it has been preserved and distributed for all these centuries, the words themselves were mostly chosen by holy men of God, who were sinners, no doubt, like the rest of us.

Of course, our comparison of Jesus to the Bible does have some limitations. They are not identical. God does not confine Himself to a book. We love the Bible solely because it introduces us to the Savior and helps us build a relationship with God. We respect the Bible, but we don’t worship it, as we do our Lord.

Bible Verses to Ponder and Share:

John 8:31, 32 and 17:17

  • Why is the “word” considered the same as “truth”?
  • What does it mean to “abide in My word”?
  • What two things can the truth, God’s word, do for us?

John 14:23 and Colossians 1:27

  • When does Jesus make His home in our heart?
  • What is the “riches of the glory of this mystery” and how does God make it known to us?
  • Why is Christ called “the hope of glory”?

Thursday: Understanding the Bible in Faith

Although some may start reading the Bible, without any noticeable expectation of its divine nature, or even with any tangible evidence that they appreciate God as a holy Being, the fact that they find themselves reading it is proof that some faith exists. And often, without any outside interference, that faith grows exponentially, the more they get into the study of God’s word.

Amazingly, this faith continues to grow throughout the lifetime of a believer, when continued Bible study becomes part of one’s daily routine. It is this faith that encourages us to please God in everything we do. Hebrews 11:6 says, “without faith, it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is”.

Truly, faith is needed in order to get the full blessing God has for us in the Scriptures. It also impacts our ability to correctly interpret the Bible. When rightly viewed in faith as the indisputable, authoritative revelation of God’s will, the Bible also becomes…

  • the standard of behavior and character
  • the test of our experience
  • the trusted record of God’s acts
  • the base of our doctrines, what we believe

One way to make sure our faith isn’t blind is by studying God’s holy word, with the aid of the Holy Spirit, and seeing for ourselves what God wants us to know about Him. Remember to pray for the Spirit each and every time you open your Bible and read.

Bible Verses to Ponder and Share:

Hebrews 11:3, 6

  • How were the worlds “framed by the word of God”?
  • How does having faith in God’s creation story increase the power of God’s word, His holy Bible, to re-create us?
  • Why is God not pleased when we don’t obey Him in faith?

Matthew 18:3

  • Why do children learn more when they have faith in their teacher?
  • What other traits of children help us have this faith?

Proverbs 30:5, 3:5, 6 and 1 Thessalonians 2:13

  • What does God do for us when we put our trust in Him?

Friday: What We Have Learned This Week

  • On Sunday, we learned that the Holy Scriptures, come to us from a holy God. Understanding and believing in that divine presence, when we read the Bible, is helpful to our faithfully understanding and interpreting God’s word.
  • On Monday, we learned that God inspired men, allowing them to write down their experience with God in the language of their peers . This unique method allows us to effectively interpret what we read in the Bible and glean all we can from its overall message.
  • On Tuesday, we learned that we are blessed that God’s words have been written down, as God instructed, so all might benefit from this more lasting form of communication.
  • On Wednesday, we learned that the communication found in the Scriptures, entailing both divine and human agents, reminds us of Christ’s divine and human nature. He is both the Son of God, and the Son of Man. And this enables us to feel closer to God, as we read more and more of our salvation in the Scriptures.
  • On Thursday, we learned that when we have any amount of faith that God and His word are holy, we are given the opportunity to have that faith increased by studying His word.

Next Week’s Lesson: Jesus and the Apostles’ View of the Bible

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