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1-Foundational Principles

Alistair Huong


Ten foundational principles to shape our thinking as we approach the study of the Bible.


Alistair Huong

Executive Director of AudioVerse



  • April 24, 2015
    7:30 PM
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Father in heaven we're so thankful for the time we can spend the Sabbath today and tomorrow in discussing something so practical and so necessary. What I pray that we might have the where with all to grasp the concepts to put into practice the things that we are talking about and that we might be people of the word once more. May your spirit come to be our teacher now we pray in Jesus' name amen. Let's begin in looking at the verse we talked about earlier. Second Timothy two fifteen or the verse we had a scripture reading. This really forms the foundation of what we're discussing this whole weekend. And by the way. This is not so much a revival type style weekend as it is a seminar and the way that I think about it is a some revival we can you come to be energized recharge inspired but a seminar is a class. I know it's end of the school year. I really shouldn't use those kinds of words. But what I'm trying to get you on the gear of is that you're going to have to think that OK to think a church is it OK that I'm going to expect you to actually you know reason and to remember and to you know use your brain a little bit because there's a there's going be a lot of information in the burden of mine. This weekend is that you'll actually learn something that's going to be something clear something that you perhaps have not learned before. So let's get back to the Bible your second term of the Chapter two fifteen. Is this study to show that self approved unto God a workman that needed not to be ashamed What are the next two words in the King James version at least as is rightly dividing the Word of Truth. Now if. The apostle Paul says that there is a right way to divide the truth to truth. What do you suppose there also is a wrong way. And so this is really the foundation of why we're discussing this topic is that there is a right and a wrong way. Let me go back here to study your Bible and so I don't claim to be an expert I don't claim to have an exhaustive study for you but I'm going to try to share some practical ways that we can ensure that we're dividing the word rightly and not haphazardly and not wrongly. OK so how are we going to do this so we have four parts to the seminar Tonight we are right here. So tonight we're going to be discussing foundational principles and we're going to explain why it's important to come to the word with the proper assumptions. A little later tonight and then tomorrow morning there in Sabbath school time we're going to talk about practical considerations I'm going to still to bare essentials. You're just going to have to remember two sets of three things. We remember things in threes. So we're not going to try to remember sixteen things we're going to number two sets of three things and we're going talk about that tomorrow and if you remember these three things in two sets. You I think based on. I hope my goal is that once you know those three things the six things the two sets of three things you will know all you need to say the Bible for yourself. So that's what we're going to discuss tomorrow morning and then during the sermon time since I know many of the people joining us in the eleven o'clock hour hat will be here for tonight and tomorrow morning. We're going to be doing something sort of a double two for the price of one. You like that. Buy One Get One Free. OK so. A demonstration what that's going to be I'm actually going to be preaching a sermon that's actually a Bible study and the Bible study is going to be not necessarily directly related to what we're discussing but it's a demonstration of the principles that were using the study. Does that make sense. So it's going to be a message that anyone can listen to and get a blessing and not have to listen to part one part two. But for those of you who are in the know you're going to have to use two halves both halves of your brain one is going to listen to the message the other is processing OK how do you apply the principles that we talked about tonight and Sabbath school time. Does that make sense. All right. I told you not to think all right. And then tomorrow afternoon we are going to actually deconstruct the Sabbath morning sermon and we're going to review how it was put together and then we're going to say OK what else can we use this these principles you know to apply another of the passages of the Bible. So trying to be practical and that's the breakdown of what we're going to do this weekend. All right. Everyone with me so far. OK that's just introduction. So tonight we're going to be discussing foundational principles. OK We're going to be looking at ten points ten principles that would be helpful for us to shape our thinking as we come to the practice of studying the Bible. And actually let's just get right into it because the first point really explains why it's important for us to even go through ten foundational principles to begin with. The first principle we're discussing tonight is called the pre-supposition principle presupposition. What a big word and you should start with a big word right. You lose your audience. But there's an important reason why we use this word because presupposition. It's put together by a root word. If I take the middle word here does it look sort of like another word. Suppose right. What do you suppose the word suppose means. So to let the cat out of bag right. When you suppose something you're thinking how do you think about something right. So what is a pre. How do you presuppose is what you think about what you're going to think about. That makes sense if I can put in other words this is our assumptions we're talking about our assumptions when we're thinking about studying the Bible. All of us come to the Bible with a certain set of pre built in assumptions in our minds and these come about through our life our life experience through our education through our culture through the media through whatever has occurred previously to our brain in our brain. It actually forms a picture through which it's a lens it's a filter through which we process new information now this actually is a very important principle to all things in life. Even in relationships and communication. But when you're studying the Bible we have to recognize we need to come to the world realizing we are not a blank slate. We come with baggage we come with three suppositions with assumptions. So how does how are we supposed to manage these presuppositions. Well let's see what the Spirit of Prophecy has to say gospel workers they'd won twenty five paragraph one it says how shall we search the scriptures in order to understand what they teach and sort of sound like what we're discussing this weekend right. So we're on the same topic. She continues we should come to the investigation of God's word. With a contrite heart. A teachable and prayerful spirit. We are not to think as did the Jews that our own ideas and opinions are infallible nor with the papers that certain individuals are the sole guardians of truth or knowledge that men have no right to search the scriptures for themselves but must accept the explanations given by the fathers of the church. Here is the key point we should not study the Bible for the purpose of sustaining our preconceived opinions but with a single object of learning what God has said preconceived opinions is just another way of saying presupposition or assumptions. So this very promptly tells us when you come to the word you need to know. Yes I do have preconceived ideas but we need to not allow those preconceived ideas to get in the single object that we are trying to accomplish and others to find out what is God trying to tell me not how can I concoct some way of making God say something that I want him to say right. But Education says this page one eighty nine paragraph one the student of the Bible should be taught to approach it in the spirit of a learner. We are to search its pages not for proof to sustain our opinions but in order to know what God says. So this is a very important point so I want to dwell on this a little bit because there are certain viewpoints. There are certain viewpoints about the Scriptures themselves that how you approach it almost predetermines what conclusions are going to reach. So for example for example if we have the preconceived idea or opinion or assumption that this war. Or old operates purely by natural causes. No such things as miracles. There is no such thing as a supernatural and you are already convinced in your mind you've made up your mind you dug in your heels that that is true. When you come to the Bible and the first chapter of the Bible says In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. How would you relate to those words if your preconceived idea is that there is no such thing as a supernatural. Well I'll tell you what happens because this is a very real phenomenon even within Christianity is that people come to the Bible and say Well that certainly must not be literal. God certainly didn't create all things by speaking them into existence because that just can't be. That just can't be true because the world operates by natural causes. So certainly God must have created through natural means. Does that make sense how your presuppositions affect how you read the word. You know so if you want to say that that's the left or the left of the aisle the people who have very little faith in the Bible is the presupposition that you know there is no God Perhaps there is no supernatural. All things work by natural causes those presuppositions. We read them into the word and all of us and all the miracles are just illustrations their myths. The Bible is just you know pick and choose. On the other hand though I think that there are also problems when we try too hard to find certain things in the Bible. So for example when we have a presupposition that some major event in current events major happening is so significant and we assume the Bible certainly must talk about this and then we go into the why. Well and we look for substantiation to prove our point that's just as dangerous. Let me give you a concrete example if you have your Bibles look with me in the book of Isaiah Isaiah Chapter thirty. This is an example illustration of how well meaning spiritually minded God fearing Christians even Adventists can fall into a trap. But we can trip ourselves up with our own presuppositions without knowing it. So I see a Chapter thirteen verse twenty five that is what it says and there shall be upon every high mountain and upon every high hill rivers and streams of waters in the day of the great slaughter when the towers fall. So what is this verse talking about. Anyone want to venture a guess. Have you read. If you've read Isaiah Chapter thirty it's actually within the context of Isaiah thirty is not a commonly studied chapter but let me just give you the summary goddess pronouncing judgment upon Israel for calling on Egypt then to fight the Syrians the Syrians are coming. And Israel said Oh no I need help and they call the Egyptians and you remember who the Egyptians were former slave masters of the Israelites idolaters and one as a god in the first part of the chapter condemns them. He says What are you doing. You're going to be destroyed because you're not trusting in the living God and trusting to Egypt. However he flips the script and he says Nevertheless God I'm going to have mercy upon you and that's what and then he gives all the blessings you know the oxen and the deer eat the ground you know all the stuff all the good stuff is going to happen to you. And here that's why verse twenty five he's talking about there will be on every high mountain. Every high know rivers and streams in that day all of the great slaughter. The days when the towers fall it's actually talking about if you trust in the Lord I will be your Victor and you will go and you will tear down the walls and the towers of the Assyrians. Rather than the other way around. OK I was just a real quick summary of what happened and I did have a theory. So how does the presupposition principle apply here well if this is the illustration that the story of what happened. Do you remember what happened on September eleventh two thousand and one. You know where I'm going with this right after that event I was at church one day and there was a fellow church member she came up to me in a huff. She was like shell shocked she was just I can't believe this. I cannot believe what I have just found in the Bible this morning do you know that the Bible predicted nine eleven and I said what. And she read me. Isaiah Chapter thirty and verse twenty five. And she said Do you see it. I said see what she said. The towers fall and I look at her and I said Have you read the whole chapter. And she said no but I don't need to because the so where do you go. Understand why it's important to understand the importance of how to manage our presuppositions. Because we can go to the Bible to substantiate anything we want but if we allow ourselves to think that our own opinions can be read into the scriptures we are not. Not to search its pages to see for proof to sustain our opinions. Was the temper eleven a very significant event. Yes but we need to be careful not to allow the news. And since when has the news become the greatest source of true right. We're going to use the news to interpret the Bible now. All right let's be careful. So this is the presupposition principle All right one more thing about this and we move on I know this is just point one we've got to move quickly here this is the big issue is that when we are thinking about presuppositions the biggest area I think that applies to us is when it crosses our own human inclination. If we are old if we have already made up our minds that there are certain lifestyle practices certain vices certain amusements in our lives that we presuppose that we just have already made up our mind. It doesn't matter what anyone says I am going to do this when the Bible condemns us when the Bible said this is thin air. Are we willing to let go of our preconceived ideas and let the work that way. If the Bible says you are going the wrong direction but we have already made up our minds that we are going the right direction. Who is going to have the final word. This is the foundational reason why this is Principle Number one we have to manage our own presupposition how are we going to deal with things when we are already a way of thinking but the Bible goes contrary to that. I'll let you muse on that as we go to number two for inspiration principle. OK let me just read these quotes and we'll talk about them. The Bible is written by inspired men but it is not God. Mode of thought and expression. It is that of humanity gone of the writer is not represented. Men will often see such an expression is not like God but God has not put himself in words in logic in rhetoric or trial in the Bible. The writers of the Bible were God's pen men not his pen this is for us like the messages page twenty one paragraph one next paragraph it says this It is not the words of the Bible that were inspired but the men that were inspired. Now that is a very interesting thought. Have you ever thought of the Bible was inspired by God So the words must be inspired. Actually the words were not inspired. The men were inspired and how does that work. Inspiration acts not on the man's words or the expressions but on the man himself who under the influence of the Holy Ghost is imbued with Fox but the words receive impressive individual mind the divine mind of the fused the divine mind and will is combined with the human mind and will thus the utterances of the man or the words of God So why is this important. It's important to remember that the Bible writers were inspired on the level of their thoughts so the concepts the principles the ideas that they communicate are what God inspired them with. God did not come down and electrocute them and then grab their hand and just etch the words exactly as he wants them. That's called verbal inspiration. And our friends the the Muslim the Muslim faith they believe that the Qur'an was verbal Inspire which meant the words that came to the Prophet Mohammed was exactly what God wanted him to write. So what that means is that only the original language of the Koran is inspired Koran so if you read the Qur'an in English you do not read the Qur'an you read an English interpretation of the Koran. I praise the Lord that He did not choose through verbal the inspirer the scriptures because I personally can't read Greek or Hebrew and I had to read the English Bible but the English Bible can be trusted because the Bible was not inspired on the level of individual words but on the thoughts of the men who wrote them. We're going to expound on this point a little bit later in another point but I just want to mention this here because we don't want to get too fixated on the individual words we focus on the fonts. What are the principles what are the ideas being communicated so this is this is the thought inspiration principle will continue here. Here's one of the three revelation principle. What I mean by that. Daniel two forty seven. Never can as it says your god is a reveal or of secrets according to his right after God gave him a dream and then sent Daniel the prophet to interpret that dream. Matthew seven seven Ask and it shall be given you seek and you shall find not going to be open until you cry stop it lessens page thirty seven paragraph one A says ever since the fall of man Christ has been the revealed or of truth to the world by hand the incredible see the word of God which live in about a forever and ever is communicated to men. What's the what's the name of the last book of the Bible. Revelation and it's ironic because everyone said that book is impossible to understand but what does the word revelation mean to reveal that all Scripture was intended by God to reveal himself to man. I think with me about this what does this say about the character of God If he says here is the manual for sale. They should buy but I am hiding the truth from you so that it is very difficult to find. What does that tell you about the character of God Is this a loving God is a God whose priority is the salvation of lost man. But how often we approach and we may be inadvertently disc described the Bible in such terms we say oh it's hard to understand the Bible as is difficult because you really have to dig hard to find anything. Well wait a minute. God wrapped up the whole book of the you know all sixty six books with a book called Revelation and it's called insp the process it's called Inspiration a revelation that actually the official term. What am I saying I'm saying that God is actually in the business of trying to reveal himself. So the issue is not with God The issue is with us for lack of a better word we're just too stupid to understand. So we got to get the horse and the cart in the right order. God is not in the business of hiding himself or hiding the truth. Burying it deep in the ground so that it is difficult for us to understand is where we are to dole of understanding. We are too fixated on our own preconceived ideas. We're not humble enough to release ourselves of our pride and say Lord Jesus the Holy Spirit guide me into all truth. He is called to reveal or of truth to the world. Never can answer by the way was a pagan King and after the first exposure to this God of Heaven His first reaction is your god is a reveal or he is not the business of hiding stuff. So let me let me go further a little bit here. And that is we all have heard the conspiracy theories right. And there's a there's an issue there's an issue here because often when we are in the study of the Bible particularly given the problems the last events there's a fine line between studying the Bible and the prophecy as it is clearly stated and crossing over the line into conspiracy theories. Here's a big problem of conspiracy theories based on this principle is that if it is necessary for us to understand the secret workings of the secret societies and all of the powers behind the curtain if we have to know that information in order for us to be say what does that tell us about God That means he did not tell us everything we need to know and buy it tell them that all of those poor people out in the boonies where they don't have the Internet and all they have are just a few pages of the Bible and they have no way of knowing what's going on in the Vatican with the Illuminati with the Masons and all of those secret societies because they don't know they will not be saved at last. What does that tell us about God you know what the Bible says about God. Jeremiah chapter twenty nine let's look there real quick. Jeremiah chapter twenty nine verse thirteen we've read this before and I know you've heard it says and ye shall seek me and find me when you shall search for Me with all your heart. It's a promise of Scripture that if we come to God with a full heart a whole hearted surrender he says you will find God in the business of revealing himself not hiding himself. And when we come to study the Scripture we need to remember that we are the limiting factor not God not the Holy Spirit not the angels they are wanting to pour out all heavenly gifts to us but we are too proud we're too close minded and we're too dumb. OK Number four continuing the human language principle. This actually ties right into the thought inspiration principle. What does this say. First like the messages page twenty paragraph two the Bible is not given to us in Grand superhuman language. I'm glad because I can understand super human language Jesus in order to reach man where he is took humanity. The Bible must be given in the language of men everything that a human is imperfect. Different meanings are expressed by the same word. There is not one word for each distinct idea the Bible was given for practical purposes so there are a couple of practical lessons here. First is that. Part of the reason sometimes people disagree about the Bible because you know well that there are plenty of theological debates and when you look at the verses often times you look at both sides of the argument might be more than two sides of the argument. And oftentimes you say well I can see how they got that and he like another silent rock is you know we got that too. You ever had that feeling. Well the problem is not so much that God is trying to make things confusing the problem is that human language is imperfect by definition humanity is imperfect and so a human language and imperfect language means that it cannot absolutely precisely down to the nano meter identify precisely what God is trying to communicate sometimes. Let me give you an example. Let's look in the Book of Daniel Daniel chapter. Three is going to Danish have read Daniel Chapter three and we are looking at verse sixteen to eighteen is a Shadrach Meshach and Abednego answered and said to the king OK Another thing is that we are not careful to answer the in this matter. We know the story. Danny chapter three fiery furnace they're about to be thrown in and they're talking to King of ignitor verse seventeen is that if it be so. Our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace and he will deliver us out of the one hand O'Kane but if not be it known to the old king that we will not serve the gods nor the worship of the golden image which thou I said OK so in verse seventeen it says. If that be so our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace and he will deliver us out of dying handle King what are they talking about. If what be so if it be so what is he talking about. OK Before that before that what that exact phrase if it be so what is it that he's talking about. If you throw it into the furnace. Right OK whatever. Eighteen But if not what not. Notice carefully this is this is an illustration of how the human language isn't perfect. In verse seventeen it talks about two things. Verse seventeen says if it be so many if you throw me into the fiery furnace God will deliver me. If you throw me a fiver and God will deliver me two things. So in verse eighteen. But if not what he talking about. If you don't throw me into the fiery furnace or if God doesn't deliver me which of the two is you talking about. When he just said My God will do. For me and then his next word is but if he does that make any sense. So here's my point my point is that I have heard this interpreted both ways. There's someone that comes and says in verse eighteen but if not I mean if you throw me into the fiery furnace God will deliver me. But if you don't throw me to the fibers I'm still not going to bow down to the other readings that if you throw me into the fiery furnace my God will deliver me. But even if he doesn't deliver me I'll still not bow down to your image. Do you real do you see what I'm saying here that that those two verses can be read both ways and I cannot persuade you one way or the other because the English language or the human language is simply imprecise enough to make that crystal clear. That makes sense so you can imagine that there are certain times when there are matters of greater significance that because of the language of humanity is limited in its scope it's finite. That's why there are human disagreements and that's why by the way we ought to be charitable to people who don't see eye to eye with us. And I had to go any further on that point but I think you know what I'm saying. All right let's continue. Point to revive spiritual things principle. First Corinthians two fourteen it says but the natural man receive it not the things of the Spirit of God for they are foolishness under him neither can he know them because they are spiritually discerned. Very important point. She was eleven verse six but without faith it is impossible to please him for he that cometh to God must believe that he is and that he is the reward of them that diligently seek Him. John sixteen thirteen how be it when he the Spirit of truth is come he will guide you into all truth for he shall speak not of himself but whatsoever he shall hear that shall he speak and he will show you things to come. So all of these three verses are simply illustrating that to fully understand the Word of God you need something more. Just human intellect there is a spiritual component to spiritual things must be spiritually discerned. And that happens only when the Spirit of Truth the Holy Spirit comes upon us. Continuing this is Christ object lessons page one ten paragraph one. Christ is the truth. His words are truth and they have a deeper significance than appears on the surface. All the things of Christ have a value beyond their unpretending a parent's mind that are quickened by the Holy Spirit will discern the value of these things they will discern the precious gems of truth though they may be buried treasure. So even though even though the human language is very limited because of the divine influence of the words there is a deeper meaning frequently in the words that are communicated. Let me give an example. In John chapter six I won't we won't go there Jesus is saying I am the bread of life. It says He that you must eat my flesh and drink my blood. And actually after that this discourse is as and many went away and walked no more with him because he said this is a hard saying who can hear it. So this illustrates when Jesus was saying eat my flesh drink my blood. There were people literally that Bachmann said how can we do that cannibalism here and they went away and said let's get this guy strange is messed up I can't believe he said that all right. But we know that that's actually not what he meant and who are the only ones who understood the ones who had their minds quickened by the Holy Spirit. Hopefully we fall in that category because how often we read something in the scriptures and we say I don't get it. Perhaps the issue is that our minds have not been quick in my own spirit. Reading it simply as a human document and we say oh me and God can't possibly ask me to do that. I can't possibly give this up because that's going to happen if I quit my job because I have to work on the Sabbath. How am I going to pay the bills. Spiritual things are spiritually discerned. The spiritually minded will look at the situation and say Here is an opportunity for God to prove himself. Whereas the carnally minded will say forget you God you're asking too much of me. Does that make sense. Spiritually discernment spiritual discernment point to revive a point to counterbalance the point number five and that is sometimes we need to have. There are you know ditches on either side of the road the right or the left and the previous one is said there are spiritual meaning that are deeper than just the words that are at the surface. We need to remember that but there is also another perilous ditch on the other side and that is we might go off in la la land and decide to spiritualize everything away. So what the Hopi principle let me tell you a little story I was very ill one time in the hospital this was a two thousand and seven eight ish end of the year. So now you have heard the story I was in a hospital paralyzed from the neck down. You can hear the story an audio verse I won't go into right now but I was in the E.R. and I was paralyzed I could not move and the attending physician came in a neurologist and I was in a Medical Center University Medical Center. So there were a lot of medical students there residents medical students so this attending physician came in and within a retinue of fresh faced bag and of their eyes you know medical students. So they came in and they were standing there and the doctor said Would you mind if they did some assessment on you because you know this to see if they can figure things out and OK whatever. So they were poking and prodding and licking me. And they're like doing all this stuff and I can move right on like or whatever and then the doctor stood back and he says the way you guys think. What do you think the problem is. And these guys just locked into like all these elaborate terms and names a la your mother mine is this is this or isn't that like maybe the son all these words like I don't even ask me. And at the time I had a friend with me in the E.R. who happens to be a neurologist. This there was a G. Y.C. name is Norman McNulty and he was sitting right there and he was sort of snickering under his breath because he's like medical students. And so the doctor stood there and I could see he had amused look on his face and he stopped. These were his first words when you hear hoofbeats don't start looking for zebras. Do you understand what he meant by that. You see all of these medical students were going all out like all these exotic diagnoses I mean like crazy stuff that they read about in their textbook. And the doctor was saying when you hear hoofbeats don't go looking for what's most exotic look for what's most obvious because if you live in Tennessee particularly if you're near my house if you hear what it's going to be the virus is probably going to have horses or maybe cows so what's the point the point is when you are faced with a question when you are studying something or there's a dilemma in the scriptures they are trying to interpret something. Don't look for the most far out exotic answer. Often times the clearest most simplest answer is the right one and by the way that actually applies to everything else in life. So remember that your final exams no extra charge for that. So in the book great controversy page five hundred ninety eight paragraph three this is what is the truth most plainly revealed in the Bible have been involved in doubt and darkness by learned men who with the pretense of great wisdom to teach that the scriptures have a mystical secret spiritual meaning not apparent in the language employed. Now this is very interesting because we just read that if we have this Holy Spirit to guide us we will understand meanings in the text. That's not apparent in the language employed is no one contradicting herself you know she's not. There's actually a boundary there are things that the Spirit will show us and there are things that our human imagination will attempt to show us. And there is a safe zone in the middle. This is why she's talking now she said These men are false teachers it was just such a class A Jesus declared you know not the Scriptures neither the power of God the language of the Bible should be explained according to its obvious meaning unless a symbol or figure is employed. It's pretty clear right. Cries of given the promise of any man will do his will he shall know the doctrine John seven seventeen if men would but take the Bible as it reads. If there were no false teachers to mislead and confuse the mind to work would be accomplished that would make angels glad and that would bring into the fold of Christ thousands upon thousands who are now wandering in air going back to the other illustration Jesus to eat my flesh drink my blood if we were to take the most obvious meaning. Yeah it would sound like cannibalism. However we must take the Bible as it reads which means keep reading and Jesus in a few verses later explains it my flesh my blood means eat my words. Study the Bible he explains himself. OK So yes there is a deeper meaning but the deeper meaning comes from the scripture itself. We must be careful lest we misinterpret the Scriptures. The plain teachings of the Word of God are not to be so spiritual light that the reality is lost sight of do not overstrain the meaning of the sentence in the Bible in order to bring forth something odd in order to please the fancy. Take the Bible as they read. Avoid idle speculation concerning what will be in the kingdom of heaven first like the messages page one seven paragraph two and this is a danger for all of us who preach in the effort of getting people's attention we always feel like I got to have something amazing right. I got to like knock this out of the park. I got to keep them awake. I got to have something really awesome. And so we tried to concoct creative interpretations sometimes that really is not apparent in the text and what's most dangerous is that we speak we must spiritualize away the reality. Let me give you an example. Let me give you an example real example of something that has been said before. Go with me to Leviticus Leviticus Chapter eleven Leviticus eleven. All right. And anyone off the top of their heads know what the because eleven is about I think I heard it. Clean and green means you are correct. Let's take a look at verse two it says speaking to the children of Israel saying these are the beasts which ye shall eat among all the beasts that are on the earth. Pretty clear Zaha write verse three whatsoever part of the whole and is cloven footed and chew it occurred among the bees that Shelley. So we want to take the most obvious reading take the Scriptures as they read what type of animals are clean to each according to verse three. What are the characteristics. She the cut split her pretty clear right. Well there was once a time an individual I don't remember the name exactly it is a long time ago. He said You amateurs. The Bible actually has a deeper meaning. Do you realize that the clean animals were actually sacrificial animals and in Romans it actually says A ye are to present yourselves a living sacrifice. So Leviticus Chapter eleven is actually not talking about clean and unclean meats all it's talking about what it means to be a living sacrifice for Jesus a living sacrifice. Choose the cut and what is the bread that we are to meditate on every day. We need to study the Bible every day. That's chewing the cut and dividing the hook. These animals are sure footed beasts of burden so that means these people are firmly grounded on the Rock Jesus Christ. Sound pretty amazing. I mean it sounds right. Is there anything quote unquote wrong with believing that Christians ought to study the Bible and be firmly grounded on the rock. Is there anything quote unquote wrong with that but is that what the verses say no how do you know that. How do you how do you know that that is incorrect or wrong wrongly dividing the word of truth how can you say it was someone sat down and you having a Bible study with them and Leviticus eleven and say that's not talking about clean and clean needs what is the what is our reason why that is an incorrect interpretation. There is contact Yes but more specifically we're just taking. I'm glad the green just read the words What does it say. Don't over strain it and just because we have the truth OK. Just because we have quote unquote the truth it does not mean that every truth is found in every text. We need be careful that we do not fall into the trap of looking for zebras whenever we hear about treats. Here's another example you remember the pool of Bethesda the individual who was you know born lame and Jesus healed on the Sabbath day. You know there's talk of a medical missionary work some of the health messages talking about overcoming sin if I'm not a faggot. So you know what that is about the F.D.A.. It's right there in the Bible. But is that a correct interpretation of the word no. Do we have. Messages with in there that is applicable and appropriate. Yes but don't overstrain the meaning of the sentences in the Bible. Even if your conclusions are correct just because your end is correct it doesn't mean that you can use inappropriate means to get there. The ends don't justify the means in other words the whole being a principle we hear both feet. Don't start looking for zebras. Look for what's the most obvious and plain reading of the word is that clear. I hope that's clear. Our continuing point over seven emotions principle. Oh boy this one is a biggie. Genuine faith is founded on the Scriptures but Satan uses so many devices to wrest the Scriptures and bring in error that great care is needed if one would know what they really do teach. It is one of the great delusions of this time notice that one of the great delusions of this time to dwell much upon lean and to claim honesty while ignoring the plain utterances of the word because the word does not cause I was feeling this one but very close to home. Many have no foundation for for their faith but emotion. The relation the religion consists in excitement when that feast of their faith is gone. Feeling maybe chat but the Word of God is the wheat and what says the prophet is the chaff to the wheat Vian Herald November twenty five eight hundred eighty four Paragraph twenty six. I thought it was another paragraph. All right let me just mention this real quick. I don't think I need to say a whole lot because I think it's very clear and that is that emotions we're human so we have emotions but the danger and let me back up. The study of the Bible and the truth and emotions they should be related. When we read the Bible it should generate some emotion when we discover a beautiful truth about our loving Lord and Savior in Chicago. Feelings of love and loyalty and appreciation in it and if it finds something in our lives that we are doing wrong and we have feelings of guilt and remorse that's also a good thing because it leads us to repentance. So the truth and emotion we don't want to say you should have any emotion. That's not the point but the point is getting the horse and the car and the car before the horse. And that is this doesn't make me feel good therefore I must not be right or I don't get excited when I hear this certain Bible study so therefore it must not be true. That makes sense what I'm trying to say the truth should result should cause us to have certain emotions. But. Our emotions are not to be the judge of whether something is true and this is something very important particularly in this day and age and that is everything is driven by emotion. This You Tube video makes me laugh so I'm going to watch it ten more times. But the Bible study is boring so I'm not going to even listen to it all with that preacher is so good. What did he teach. I don't know but he was really going to say one thing. There is a superstar mentality even within that church celebrity mentality that speaker is so dynamic I do love listening to him What did he teach. I don't know but whatever you teach I believe I believe it. Problem our emotions should not be the gauge by which we determine what we believe is going to be based on the truth. Many have no foundation for their faith but emotion and the next point. This is so good I actually have to add something. Another point that is point to very true is better the new principle. This passage actually ties into what we were just talking about great controversy page four sixty three says popular revivals are too often carried by appeals to the imagination by citing the emotions by gratifying the love for what is new and startling. This is a danger for those of us who preach who teach who present is to come up with something new. We got something flashy or something more engaging something more amazing. When I'm making a movie here guys I mean it's preaching the word just preach the word convert that's gained have little desire to listen to Bible truth. If we are. Winning people to the truth with with shows and concerts and games and prizes. Why would they listen to the Bible. Little interest in the testimony of prophets and apostles. Unless a religious service or something of us of station or character has no attraction for them. A method which appeal to unimpassioned reason awakened no response. The plain warning of God's word related directly to the eternal interests are unheeded. So Jesus coming soon. It's not as exciting as the New Avengers movie. Here's the problem we have I think for even myself I can see myself in this same predicament and that is emotions have such a grasp on us on me as on one hand we want to entertain we want to you know have gimmicks they want to make people feel good and then on the other hand we feel like we've got to shock people right. Different really them coming soon. There are jazz within the church. I'm sorry but the point is that conspiracy theories and since variational isn't right people who follow false prophets and trying to make every headline in the news saw a major new prophecy in the Bible. All of this kind of stuff stirred up within us this exactly appeals to imagination by exciting the emotions and gratifying to love what is new and startling. So in the name of being faithful Bible believing promised these scholars were falling right into the great delusion that we read about earlier and that is making emotion the bedrock of our religion instead of the plain writings of God's word. So when we study the Bible when we study the Bible. Point is not to find what's new but is to find what's true. So when we come to the Bible and when we pray the Lord today I'm opening the Bible Lord teach me what is true. That's the prayer the prayer ought not primarily to be show me something new because when we are searching for the truth automatically God will reveal new truths to us but if we're looking for what's new we might be like that. True but that's not exciting enough. In fact I was an evangelist it Series in Sacramento California a number of years ago and I was I was actually one of the speakers and I was out there shaking hands with people and a gentleman came up to me said you know Adventism you know I think God has a better way I'm only talking about he said Do you know that we haven't had any new light since eight hundred forty four as a new light. What do you mean by that new light. He said We haven't had any new prophets we haven't had any new time prophecy since one thousand nine hundred four he said Adventism must be a lie. There must be another movement to come that's going to give us another prophet and another time probably because it's been over one hundred years and God has left his church. Well that gentleman was later on escorted out of our meetings. But is this kind of thinking that leads people down into the road to fanaticism and on the other hand the love of excitement doles the appetite for reading the Word of God which actually happens to be quite exciting if you have the spiritual antennas up and tuned. Good point nine We need to hurry here. Big picture principle big picture principle this one I think speaks for itself. Education Page one ninety paragraph two the Bible is its own exposure. Scripture is to be compared with Scripture. The student should learn to. See the word as a whole and to see the relation of its parts we're going to come back at this point tomorrow morning. She should gain a knowledge of its grand central theme of God The original purpose for the world of the rise of the great controversy and of the work of redemption. So what is the same thing that the entire Bible can be understood within a certain framework there is a over arching framework through which we can interpret scripture and I call that the grand central theme of the Bible. That original purpose of God for the world God's original intent. The rise of the great controversy in the work of redemption. We can summarize all of this is just the great controversy framework or the mentor narrative is another big word and that is that's the story behind the story it is the canvas upon which all of our individual life stories and all the stories fit within it's a framework and it makes sense when you look at it in the big picture. Another passage review and herald October fourteenth one thousand nine paragraph two the life and character of Christ were living Apostles of the truths he taught by example inspired faith in his followers. He was the subject of all the lessons he gave his disciples the theme to which their attention must be riveted. Again that work the thing he was the great center of all. And faith in him was to bring eternal life to all who would believe in him. The types and right of the Jewish church all connected with himself he was the glory of the whole system. Everything that was attractive either in nature revelation was found in him he was an all absorbing theme a pitcher of some problems the first and last alpha and omega of all things. So Christ is the Scray center of all the truth all emanates from him and when we study the Bible we need to look through the framework there's a great controversy. The big frame and then Jesus is the hub and everything's got to connect and if it doesn't make sense within the framework. There's some things out of place and it's a we don't have time to deal with this today but I actually I believe I've given a study with this before and that is the importance of the whole great controversy to make sense of everything the Sabbath so that hell fire the law all of these things have a connection and they flow together and it makes perfect sense and what we said why what we ought to see that connection and to look for. All right we got to we've got to move on here even though we could talk all night about that point number ten the no pain no gain principle. The study of the Bible demands our most diligent effort and perseverance thought as the miner digs for the golden treasure in the earth so earnestly persistently we must seek for the treasure of God's word Education Page one eight eighty nine paragraph three. It is proper and right to read the Bible but your duty does not end there for you are to search its pages for yourself. The knowledge of God is not to be gained without mental effort without prayer for wisdom in order that you may separate from the pure grain of truth the chaff with which men and Satan have misrepresented the doctrines of truth. What am I trying to say here. No pain no gain and that is simply this it true God is trying to reveal himself. But it doesn't mean it's not going to take some effort on our part and it's not the at is not that God is trying to make it difficult. It's just that because we are so degenerated our minds are so dull in order for us to actually learn the truth we have to exert some effort and when we do it God's promises are right there you shall find when you seek for me with all your heart. I want to read one passage to Psalm one twenty six. Someone twenty six. We are. Winding down here someone twenty six paragraph sorry in that paragraph verse six. Someone twenty six verse six he that goeth forth and weep with burying what precious seed shall doubtless come again with rejoicing bringing his sheaves with him when the solar went forth the SO in the parable of the Sower in the see what the seed represent the Word of God and in this song word so it tells us that he let go of course and weep a very precious seed many sowing precious seed will doubtless come again with rejoicing bringing his sheaves with him which means when you go to sell your seed you are guaranteed to have a harvest. But not just any seed precious seat. What makes seed precious. We actually my wife and I we we are want to be gardeners we have a garden and we want to eat food from our garden. So we want to be gardeners but. We actually had some success last year and we grew a number of things one of the things that we grew were what's called Scarlet Runner me I could have told you know it could have been a number of other things that we grew but the scarlet runner bean is probably the most striking because you plant the seed we bought the CD from Amazon and the seeds are like giant pinto beans like huge beans are like this big and they're pink with white speckles on them really nice big. We planted them and they shot up they grew and when we planted the seed we bought them and a lot of the seed we plant them at the end of the season. The pod were drying on the line and we brought them in and we were saving seed for the next year. Unfortunately they actually didn't taste very good so we're not growing them this year but we still save the sea. And we took the pods down and we open the pod and both of us were like whoa. These kids are amazing. They're like this pink and the pink and they're speckled and then we went to the refrigerator to put our other pack misdeeds and we realize they look exactly the same but something changed between the see something change our mind right in the seed that was planted to the sea that was harvested what was the difference this where we grew this we cultivated the ground we watered it we redid it it took effort it took our time it took patience and even though this seed was exactly the same in the end now it's precious seat. When you go to sow your seed. Yes doubtless you will call rejoicing bearing your sheaves. But the seed that you bring better be precious. See there you yourself took the effort to grow the word that you yourself assimilated and chewed on it understood and studied because it takes a most diligent thought and persevering or diligent effort and perseverance. But there is one more thing and I'm going to leave you with this last part that is we're trying to be practical this weekend about how the state of the Bible and this is the absolute most practical rule principle. Whatever you want to call it I learned it actually last year. I didn't learn it but the idea came to me last year when we were I was at an Army Bible camp. I was actually presenting this seminar there. Now listening to one of the other presenters and this is what he said. You want to say the Bible was the single most important thing to do. Just read the work. After we talk about all these principles I think it's important for us to keep them in mind. But there's just no substitute for sitting down opening it up and just read you one understand what it means when God says For God so loved the world He gave His only begotten son. When you go read John Chapter three you don't understand three Angels' messages will open up to Revelation fourteen and read it. I don't understand the prophecy of Daniel Chapter seven eight and I just read it or I don't really care. What about the laws in Leviticus and numbers. Just read it. It's not rocket science. God has given to us His word. It's written in the language of men imperfect and flying it as it might be. It was calculated to reach men where they are read the word. That's what we need to start. That brings us to the end of our meeting tonight I invite you to join us again tomorrow morning bright and early nine thirty as we get into some more practical matters. Two sets of three things tomorrow that we're going to learn about how to study the Bible. So let's get our heads together as we pray. Father we thank you so much for the principles that you have given to us from your inspired writings and from the Bible. But I pray that we might have the foundation that we might approach your word with humility of mind with a willingness of spirit for the eagerness to learn from from you Lord we recognize that we are insufficient. Things so we pray for the Holy Spirit to guide us not only to give us wisdom but to inspire us and to motivate us to spend time in these pages of secret word and be with us tonight in the Sabbath rest. Bring a safety safety together again tomorrow morning as we continue this and we commit all of these things to you today which is this media was brought to you by Adil purse a website dedicated to spreading God's word through free sermon audio and much more if you would like to know more about audio verse if you would like to listen to more servant leave the W W W dot audio Verse dot org.


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