‘The book of the genealogy of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the Son of Abraham.’ That is Matthew chapter 1, v. 1—not exactly riveting stuff, is it? One might have thought that the ‘begots’ were an Old Testament thing—but here we are, at the very start of the New Testament, supposedly the new religious order and what do we have? Matthew 1, v.2: ‘Abraham begot Isaac, Isaac begot Jacob, and Jacob begot Judah and his brothers.’
There can be few episodes in earth’s history more illustrative of the Great Controversy’s working out in human affairs than the repeated bloody persecutions of the early Church. The stories of heroic fortitude and commitment shown by the early Christian martyrs inspired the believers of their own time and literally has inspired (and continues to inspire) Christians for two thousand years.
Herbert Edgar Douglass, Jr., a Seventh-day Adventist scholar, administrator and writer died this morning at the age of 87. Douglass helped to write the Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary series and authored "Messenger of the Lord," a biography of Ellen G. White.
This week in the Adult Bible Study Guide is the second of three weeks which focus on Seventh-day Adventist Fundamental Belief no. 11, “Growing in Christ”. This is the most recent addition to what were, for 25 years “the 27 Fundamental Beliefs”; it was only added by the 2005 General Conference Session (resulting in the “28 Fundamentals”).
This week’s lesson emphasises the need to report about witnessing and to keep accurate statistics. This is not the most exciting topic. I taught history and religion at Newbold College for ten years but in one course, on economic history, I regularly taught what I called “quantitative data methodologies for historians”—i.e., statistics. Every year, as the students, realised that, though they were taking a history course, they were going to have to grapple with statistics, I could see certain looks on their faces—first tedium, then often, fear and finally something like betrayal.
This week’s Adult Bible Study Guide quotes Ellen White: “The law of God, spoken in awful grandeur from Sinai, is the utterance of condemnation to the sinner. It is the province of the law to condemn, but there is in it no power to pardon or to redeem.” (SDA Bible Commentary, VI, 1094). God’s power “to pardon and to forget” is, as the influential Adventist theologian G. D.