These Sabbath School helps are developed by staff member James Brenneman for his own personal study and for the study of those who wish to see the texts in the Sabbath School in perhaps a clearer light.
June 15-21, 2013 (Heaven's Best Gift - Zechariah)
Memory Text Zachariah 9:16 Good News Translation
When that day comes, the Lord will save his people, as a shepherd saves his flock from danger. They will shine in his land like the jewels of a crown.
Sunday – The Robe of a Jew
Zechariah 8 Good News Translation
1 The Lord Almighty gave this message to Zechariah: 2 "I have longed to help Jerusalem because of my deep love for her people, a love which has made me angry with her enemies. 3 I will return to Jerusalem, my holy city, and live there. It will be known as the faithful city, and the hill of the Lord Almighty will be called the sacred hill. 4 Once again old men and women, so old that they use canes when they walk, will be sitting in the city squares. 5 And the streets will again be full of boys and girls playing. 6 "This may seem impossible to those of the nation who are now left, but it's not impossible for me. 7 I will rescue my people from the lands where they have been taken, 8 and will bring them back from east and west to live in Jerusalem. They will be my people, and I will be their God, ruling over them faithfully and justly. 9 "Have courage! You are now hearing the same words the prophets spoke at the time the foundation was being laid for rebuilding my Temple. 10 Before that time no one could afford to hire either men or animals, and no one was safe from enemies. I turned people against one another. 11 But now I am treating the survivors of this nation differently. 12 They will plant their crops in peace. Their vines will bear grapes, the earth will produce crops, and there will be plenty of rain. I will give all these blessings to the people of my nation who survive. 13 People of Judah and Israel! In the past foreigners have cursed one another by saying, "May the same disasters fall on you that fell on Judah and Israel!' But I will save you, and then those foreigners will say to one another, "May you receive the same blessings that came to Judah and Israel!' So have courage and don't be afraid." 14 The Lord Almighty says, "When your ancestors made me angry, I planned disaster for them and did not change my mind, but carried out my plans. 15 But now I am planning to bless the people of Jerusalem and Judah. So don't be afraid. 16 These are the things you should do: Speak the truth to one another. In the courts give real justice - the kind that brings peace. 17 Do not plan ways of harming one another. Do not give false testimony under oath. I hate lying, injustice, and violence."
18 The Lord Almighty gave this message to Zechariah: 19 "The fasts held in the fourth, fifth, seventh, and tenth months will become festivals of joy and gladness for the people of Judah. You must love truth and peace." 20 The Lord Almighty says, "The time is coming when people from many cities will come to Jerusalem. 21 Those from one city will say to those from another, "We are going to worship the Lord Almighty and pray for his blessing. Come with us!' 22 Many peoples and powerful nations will come to Jerusalem to worship the Lord Almighty and to pray for his blessing. 23 In those days ten foreigners will come to one Jew and say, "We want to share in your destiny, because we have heard that God is with you.' "
Zechariah 8:19 SDA BIBLE COMMENTARY God declares that these fasts commemorating earlier calamities would be changed into joyful occasions. The fasts of the “fourth” and “fifth” months (Tammuz and Ab) doubtless commemorated the capture and destruction of Jerusalem by the Babylonians; that of the “seventh” month (Tishri), perhaps the murder of Gedaliah and the flight into Egypt; and that of the “tenth” month (Tebeth) probably the time when Nebuchadnezzar began the siege of Jerusalem.
Monday – The King of Peace
Zechariah 9:9 Common English Bible
Rejoice greatly, Daughter Zion. Sing aloud, Daughter Jerusalem. Look, your king will come to you. He is righteous and victorious. He is humble and riding on an ass, on a colt, the offspring of a donkey.
Matthew 21:9 New Living Translation
He was in the center of the procession, and the crowds all around him were shouting, "Praise God for the Son of David! Bless the one who comes in the name of the Lord! Praise God in highest heaven!"
Matthew 21:9 SDA BIBLE COMMENTARY Multitudes. The throng that gathered as Jesus moved on toward the summit of the Mount of Olives. Among these, undoubtedly, who constituted the throng were many who had come to Bethany to see Jesus and to see Lazarus, whom Jesus had but a few short weeks before raised from the dead. Even the priests and rulers came out to join the vast concourse of people. In this triumphal procession were many who had been captives of Satan and whom Jesus had delivered from demons, from blindness and dumbness, from sickness and lameness, from leprosy and death.
Mark 11:9-10 New Revised Standard
Then those who went ahead and those who followed were shouting, "Hosanna! Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord!
Luke 19:38 New King James Version
saying: "'Blessed is the King who comes in the name of the Lord!' Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!"
John 12:13-15 New Century Version
13 So they took branches of palm trees and went out to meet Jesus, shouting, "Praise God! God bless the King of Israel!" 14 Jesus found a colt and sat on it. This was as the Scripture says, 15 "Don't be afraid, people of Jerusalem! Your king is coming, sitting on the colt of a donkey."
Tuesday – The One Pierced
Zechariah 12:10 Holman Christian Standard
"Then I will pour out a spirit of grace and prayer on the house of David and the residents of Jerusalem, and they will look at Me whom they pierced. They will mourn for Him as one mourns for an only child and weep bitterly for Him as one weeps for a firstborn.
Zechariah 12:10 SDA BIBLE COMMENTARY Zechariah is here presenting Israel’s future as it might have been. It was God’s design that the whole earth should be prepared for the first advent of Christ. How different would have been the history of the Jewish nation and of Jerusalem if the people had accepted the gift of God’s beloved Son! Had He come to a nation thus prepared to receive Him, and had He suddenly been “pierced,” how deep their grief would have been! The poignancy of their grief would have been heightened by the realization that their own sins had caused His death. However, the words are to meet yet another fulfillment. The mourning here described pictures the experience of those who rejected Christ at His first advent… When they shall see Him in all His glory at the second advent, they will realize the full import of their deed.
John 19:37 New Century Version
And another Scripture says, "They will look at the one they stabbed."
Revelation 1:7 New International Version
Look, he is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see him, even those who pierced him; and all the peoples of the earth will mourn because of him. So shall it be! Amen.
Wednesday - The Good Shepherd
Zechariah 13:7-9 New International Reader's Version
7 "My sword, wake up! Attack my shepherd! Attack the man who is close to me," announces the LORD who rules over all. "Strike the shepherd down. Then the sheep will be scattered. And I will turn my hand against their little ones. 8 Here is what will happen in the whole land," announces the Lord. "Two-thirds of the people will be struck down and die. But one-third will be left. 9 I will put that third in the fire. I will make them as pure as silver. I will test them like gold. They will call out to me. And I will answer them. I will say, 'They are my people.' And they will say, 'The LORD is our God.' "
Zechariah 13:7 COMMENTARY BY MATTHEW HENRY Here is a prophecy of the sufferings of Christ. God the Father gave order to the sword of his justice to awake against his Son, when he freely made his soul an offering for sin. As God, he is called "my Fellow." Christ and the Father are one.
Matthew 26:31 Good News Translation
Then Jesus said to them, "This very night all of you will run away and leave me, for the scripture says, "God will kill the shepherd, and the sheep of the flock will be scattered.
Mark 14:27 New Living Translation
"All of you will desert me," Jesus told them. "For the Scriptures say, 'God will strike the Shepherd, and the sheep will be scattered.'
Thursday – King of the Whole World
Zechariah 14 Holman Christian Bible
1 A day of the Lord is coming when your plunder will be divided in your presence. 2 I will gather all the nations against Jerusalem for battle. The city will be captured, the houses looted, and the women raped. Half the city will go into exile, but the rest of the people will not be removed from the city. 3 Then the Lord will go out to fight against those nations as He fights on a day of battle. 4 On that day His feet will stand on the Mount of Olives, which faces Jerusalem on the east. The Mount of Olives will be split in half from east to west, forming a huge valley, so that half the mountain will move to the north and half to the south. 5 You will flee by My mountain valley, for the valley of the mountains will extend to Azal. You will flee as you fled from the earthquake in the days of Uzziah king of Judah. Then the Lord my God will come and all the holy ones with Him. 6 On that day there will be no light; the sunlight and moonlight will diminish. 7 It will be a day known [only] to Yahweh, without day or night, but there will be light at evening. 8 On that day living water will flow out from Jerusalem, half of it toward the eastern sea and the other half toward the western sea, in summer and winter alike. 9 On that day Yahweh will become king over all the earth-Yahweh alone, and His name alone. 10 All the land from Geba to Rimmon south of Jerusalem will be changed into a plain. But [Jerusalem] will be raised up and will remain on its site from the Benjamin Gate to the place of the First Gate, to the Corner Gate, and from the Tower of Hananel to the royal winepresses. 11 People will live there, and never again will there be a curse of destruction. So Jerusalem will dwell in security. 12 This will be the plague the Lord strikes all the peoples with, who have warred against Jerusalem: their flesh will rot while they stand on their feet, their eyes will rot in their sockets, and their tongues will rot in their mouths. 13 On that day a great panic from the Lord will be among them, so that each will seize the hand of another, and the hand of one will rise against the other. 14 Judah will also fight at Jerusalem, and the wealth of all the surrounding nations will be collected: gold, silver, and clothing in great abundance. 15 The same plague as the previous one will strike the horses, mules, camels, donkeys, and all the animals that are in those camps. 16 Then all the survivors from the nations that came against Jerusalem will go up year after year to worship the King, the Lord of Hosts, and to celebrate the Festival of Booths. 17 Should any of the families of the earth not go up to Jerusalem to worship the King, the Lord of Hosts, rain will not fall on them. 18 And if the people of Egypt will not go up and enter, then rain will not fall on them; this will be the plague the Lord inflicts on the nations who do not go up to celebrate the Festival of Booths. 19 This will be the punishment of Egypt and all the nations that do not go up to celebrate the Festival of Booths. 20 On that day, [the words] HOLY TO THE LORD will be on the bells of the horses. The pots in the house of the Lord will be like the sprinkling basins before the altar. 21 Every pot in Jerusalem and in Judah will be holy to the Lord of Hosts. Everyone who sacrifices will come and take some of the pots to cook in. And on that day there will no longer be a Canaanite in the house of the Lord of Hosts.
Zechariah 14:1 SDA BIBLE COMMENTARY Chapter 14 is a description of events in connection with the second coming of the Messiah in terms of how this spectacular event would have come about if the Israelites who returned from captivity had fulfilled their destiny. Inasmuch as they turned again and again from their high privileges and ultimately rejected the Messiah (Acts 3:13–15), God turned from them. He is now accomplishing His purposes through the Christian church.
June 22-28, 2013 (Lest We Forget - Malachi)
Memory Text: Malachi 1:11 English Standard Version
For from the rising of the sun to its setting my name will be great among the nations, and in every place incense will be offered to my name, and a pure offering. For my name will be great among the nations, says the LORD of hosts.
Sunday – Great Is the Lord
Malachi 1 Common English Bible
1 A pronouncement. The LORD's word to Israel through Malachi. 2 I have loved you, says the LORD; but you say, "How have you loved us?" Wasn't Esau Jacob's brother? says the LORD. I loved Jacob, 3 but I rejected Esau. I turned Esau's mountains into desolation, his inheritance into a wilderness for jackals. 4 Edom may say, "We are beaten down, but we will rebuild the ruins"; but the LORD of heavenly forces proclaims: They may build, but I will tear them down. They will call themselves a wicked territory, the people against whom the LORD rages forever. 5 Your eyes will see it and you will say, "May the LORD be great beyond the borders of Israel." 6 A son honors a father, and a servant honors his master. But if I'm a father, where is my honor? Or if I'm a master, where is my respect? says the LORD of heavenly forces to you priests who despise my name. So you say, "How have we despised your name?" 7 By approaching my altar with polluted food. But you say, "How have we polluted it?" When you say, "The table of the LORD can be despised." 8 If you bring a blind animal to sacrifice, isn't that evil? If you bring a lame or sick one, isn't that evil? Would you bring it to your governor? Would he be pleased with it or accept you? says the LORD of heavenly forces. 9 So now ask God to be gracious to us. After what you have done, will he accept you? says the LORD of heavenly forces. 10 Who among you will shut the doors of the temple so that you don't burn something on my altar in vain? I take no delight in you, says the LORD of heavenly forces. I won't accept a grain offering from your hand. 11 Nevertheless, from sunrise to sunset, my name will be great among the nations. Incense and a pure grain offering will be offered everywhere in my name, because my name is great among the nations, says the LORD of heavenly forces. 12 But you make my name impure when you say, "The table of the LORD is polluted. Its fruit, its food, is despised." 13 But you say, "How tedious!" and you groan about it, says the LORD of heavenly forces. You permit what is stolen, lame, or sick to be brought for a sacrifice, and you bring the grain offering. Should I accept such from your hands? says the LORD. 14 I will curse the cheater who has a healthy male in his flock, but who promises and sacrifices to the LORD that which is corrupt. I am truly a great king, says the LORD of heavenly forces, and my name is feared among the nations.
Malachi 1:14 The Clear Word Cursed be the one who has an excellent animal in his flock and promises to bring it to me, but then brings a defective, sickly animal instead. Am I not your King? Don’t I rule over all nations of the world? Am I not the Lord, the Creator of heaven and earth?”
Monday – Loving and Respecting Others
Malachi 2 New Century Version
1 "Priests, this command is for you. 2 Listen to me. Pay attention to what I say. Honor my name," says the Lord All-Powerful. "If you don't, I will send a curse on you and on your blessings. I have already cursed them, because you don't pay attention to what I say. 3 "I will punish your descendants. I will smear your faces with the animal insides left from your feasts, and you will be thrown away with it. 4 Then you will know that I am giving you this command so my agreement with Levi will continue," says the Lord All-Powerful. 5 "My agreement for priests was with the tribe of Levi. I promised them life and peace so they would honor me. And they did honor me and fear me. 6 They taught the true teachings and spoke no lies. With peace and honesty they did what I said they should do, and they kept many people from sinning. 7 "A priest should teach what he knows, and people should learn the teachings from him, because he is the messenger of the Lord All-Powerful. 8 But you priests have stopped obeying me. With your teachings you have caused many people to do wrong. You have broken the agreement with the tribe of Levi!" says the Lord All-Powerful. 9 "You have not been careful to do what I say, but instead you take sides in court cases. So I have caused you to be hated and disgraced in front of everybody." 10 We all have the same father; the same God made us. So why do people break their promises to each other and show no respect for the agreement our ancestors made with God? 11 The people of Judah have broken their promises. They have done something God hates in Israel and Jerusalem: The people of Judah did not respect the Temple that the Lord loves, and the men of Judah married women who worship foreign gods. 12 Whoever does this might bring offerings to the Lord All-Powerful, but the Lord will still cut that person off from the community of Israel. 13 This is another thing you do. You cover the Lord's altar with your tears. You cry and moan, because he does not accept your offerings and is not pleased with what you bring. 14 You ask, "Why?" It is because the Lord sees how you treated the wife you married when you were young. You broke your promise to her, even though she was your partner and you had an agreement with her. 15 God made husbands and wives to become one body and one spirit for his purpose -- so they would have children who are true to God. So be careful, and do not break your promise to the wife you married when you were young. 16 The Lord God of Israel says, "I hate divorce. And I hate people who do cruel things as easily as they put on clothes," says the Lord All-Powerful. So be careful. And do not break your trust. 17 You have tired the Lord with your words. You ask, "How have we tired him?" You did it by saying, "The Lord thinks anyone who does evil is good, and he is pleased with them." Or you asked, "Where is the God who is fair?"
Tuesday – Tithe in the Storehouse
Malachi 3:1-10 English Standard Version
1 "Behold, I send my messenger, and he will prepare the way before me. And the Lord whom you seek will suddenly come to his temple; and the messenger of the covenant in whom you delight, behold, he is coming, says the LORD of hosts. 2 But who can endure the day of his coming, and who can stand when he appears? For he is like a refiner's fire and like fullers' soap. 3 He will sit as a refiner and purifier of silver, and he will purify the sons of Levi and refine them like gold and silver, and they will bring offerings in righteousness to the LORD. 4 Then the offering of Judah and Jerusalem will be pleasing to the LORD as in the days of old and as in former years. 5 "Then I will draw near to you for judgment. I will be a swift witness against the sorcerers, against the adulterers, against those who swear falsely, against those who oppress the hired worker in his wages, the widow and the fatherless, against those who thrust aside the sojourner, and do not fear me, says the LORD of hosts. 6 "For I the LORD do not change; therefore you, O children of Jacob, are not consumed. 7 From the days of your fathers you have turned aside from my statutes and have not kept them. Return to me, and I will return to you, says the LORD of hosts. But you say, 'How shall we return?' 8 Will man rob God? Yet you are robbing me. But you say, 'How have we robbed you?'In your tithes and contributions. 9 You are cursed with a curse, for you are robbing me, the whole nation of you. 10 Bring the full tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. And thereby put me to the test, says the LORD of hosts, if I will not open the windows of heaven for you and pour down for you a blessing until there is no more need.
Wednesday – A Scroll of Remembrance
Malachi 3:14-15 Bible in Basic English
14 You have said, It is no use worshipping God: what profit have we had from keeping his orders, and going in clothing of sorrow before the Lord of armies? 15 And now to us the men of pride seem happy; yes, the evil-doers are doing well; they put God to the test and are safe.
Malachi 3:16-18 New King James Version
16 Then those who feared the Lord spoke to one another, And the Lord listened and heard them; So a book of remembrance was written before Him For those who fear the Lord And who meditate on His name. 17 "They shall be Mine," says the Lord of hosts, "On the day that I make them My jewels. And I will spare them As a man spares his own son who serves him." 18 Then you shall again discern Between the righteous and the wicked, Between one who serves God And one who does not serve Him.
Exodus 32:32 GOD'S WORD Translation
But will you forgive their sin? If not, please wipe me out of the book you have written."
Psalm 139:16 Holman Christian Standard
Your eyes saw me when I was formless; all [my] days were written in Your book and planned before a single one of them began.
Isaiah 4:3 New International Reader's Version
Those who are left in Zion will be called holy. They will be recorded among those who are alive in Jerusalem.
Isaiah 65:6 Common English Bible
Look, this stands written before me. I won't be silent, but I will repay; I will repay in full measure.
Revelation 20:11-15 The Clear Word
11 Before they were destroyed, I saw a great white throne. The form of the One who sat on it was so radiant that the earth and the sky seemed to disappear from His very presence. 12 Then all the wicked who had been resurrected to be judged, whether they had been great or small, stood together with Satan in front of the One sitting on the throne. The Book of Life was opened and the Book of Death. The lives of the wicked were shown to them, and they were judged according to what they had done as recorded in the books. 13 Everyone who had ever lived was there, those who had been buried at sea, as well as those who had been buried on land. All the wicked were judged by what they had done. 14 Then I saw death and the grave thrown into a lake of fire. This is called the second and final death. 15 Anyone whose name was not recorded in the Book of Life was consumed by this same fire.
Thursday – The Sun of Righteousness
Malachi 4 Good News Translation
1 The Lord Almighty says, "The day is coming when all proud and evil people will burn like straw. On that day they will burn up, and there will be nothing left of them. 2 But for you who obey me, my saving power will rise on you like the sun and bring healing like the sun's rays. You will be as free and happy as calves let out of a stall. 3 On the day when I act, you will overcome the wicked, and they will be like dust under your feet. 4 "Remember the teachings of my servant Moses, the laws and commands which I gave him at Mount Sinai for all the people of Israel to obey. 5 "But before the great and terrible day of the Lord comes, I will send you the prophet Elijah. 6 He will bring fathers and children together again; otherwise I would have to come and destroy your country."
Deuteronomy 30:19 New Century Version
Today I ask heaven and earth to be witnesses. I am offering you life or death, blessings or curses. Now, choose life! Then you and your children may live.
John 3:16 English Standard Version
"For God so loved the world,that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.
June 29 to July 5, 2013 (3rd Quarter - Revival Our Great Need)
Memory Text: Revelation 3:20 New King James Version
Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me.
Revelation 3:20 COMMENTARY FAMILY BIBLE NOTES Christ is ready to save men; but in order to be saved by him, they must receive him in faith and love as their Redeemer, and devote life to his service. If they are lost, it will be on account of their opposition to him, and their refusal to accept of his salvation.
Sunday – Hope for Lukewarm Laodiceans
Revelation 3:14-15 Common English Bible
14 "Write this to the angel of the church in Laodicea: These are the words of the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the ruler of God's creation. 15 I know your works. You are neither cold nor hot. I wish that you were either cold or hot.
Revelation 3:15 SDA BIBLE COMMENTARY Neither cold nor hot. It has been suggested that this figurative expression must have been particularly meaningful to the Christians at Laodicea. One of the chief landmarks of that vicinity was a waterfall over which a stream from the hot springs at Hierapolis flowed, leaving mineral deposits. Laodicea’s water source was not these hot springs or a cold one, but a water tower filled by an aqueduct that shows deposits from similar mineral water, probably warm. Lukewarm water was thus a familiar phenomenon to the Laodiceans, and fittingly characterized their spiritual condition.
2 Corinthians 1:20 New King James Version
New King James Version For all the promises of God in Him are Yes, and in Him Amen, to the glory of God through us
John 3:10-11 Common English Bible
10 Jesus said, "You are an important teacher in Israel, and you don't understand these things? 11 I tell you the truth, we talk about what we know, and we tell about what we have seen, but you don't accept what we tell you.
Colossians 1:13-17 New Century Version
13 God has freed us from the power of darkness, and he brought us into the kingdom of his dear Son. 14 The Son paid for our sins, and in him we have forgiveness. 15 No one can see God, but Jesus Christ is exactly like him. He ranks higher than everything that has been made. 16 Through his power all things were made -- things in heaven and on earth, things seen and unseen, all powers, authorities, lords, and rulers. All things were made through Christ and for Christ. 17 He was there before anything was made, and all things continue because of him.
2 Corinthians 5:17 GOD'S WORD Translation
Whoever is a believer in Christ is a new creation. The old way of living has disappeared. A new way of living has come into existence.
Galatians 6:14-15 New Living Translation
14 As for me, God forbid that I should boast about anything except the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ. Because of that cross, my interest in this world died long ago, and the world's interest in me is also long dead. 15 It doesn't make any difference now whether we have been circumcised or not. What counts is whether we really have been changed into new and different people.
Monday – A Loving Rebuke
Revelation 3:15-16 New American Standard
15 'I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot ; I wish that you were cold or hot. 16 'So because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of My mouth.
Hebrews 12:7-11 English Standard Version
7 It is for discipline that you have to endure. God is treating you as sons. For what son is there whom his father does not discipline? 8 If you are left without discipline, in which all have participated, then you are illegitimate children and not sons. 9 Besides this, we have had earthly fathers who disciplined us and we respected them. Shall we not much more be subject to the Father of spirits and live? 10 For they disciplined us for a short time as it seemed best to them, but he disciplines us for our good, that we may share his holiness. 11 For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.
Hebrews 12:9 SDA BIBLE COMMENTARY “Father of spirits” refers to God as the source of all life and being. This expression stands in contrast with “fathers of our flesh,” as Heb. 12:10 makes evident. The argument is from the lesser to the greater: if we respect the discipline of an earthly father, to whom we owe our bodily existence, how much more should we “be in subjection” to—or “reverence”—the correction of our heavenly Father, to whom we owe life itself?
Job 5:17-19 English Standard Version
17 "Behold, blessed is the one whom God reproves; therefore despise not the discipline of the Almighty. 18 For he wounds, but he binds up; he shatters, but his hands heal. 19 He will deliver you from six troubles; in seven no evil shall touch you.
Psalm 94:12 Holman Christian Standard
Lord, happy is the man You discipline and teach from Your law.
15 Correction and punishment make children wise, but those left alone will disgrace their mother. 17 Correct your children, and you will be proud; they will give you satisfaction.
Tuesday – Perception and Reality
Revelation 3:17 Hebrew Names Version
Because you say, 'I am rich, and have gotten riches, and have need of nothing;' and don't know that you are the wretched one, miserable, poor, blind, and naked.
Revelation 3:17 COMMENTARY BY ALBERT BARNES And have need of nothing… In all respects, their wants were satisfied; they had enough of everything…There is no more common illusion among men than the feeling that if one has wealth, he has everything; that there is no want of his nature which cannot be satisfied with that;..Hence the almost universal desire to be rich.
Matthew 25:1-13 New Living Translation
1 "The Kingdom of Heaven can be illustrated by the story of ten bridesmaids who took their lamps and went to meet the bridegroom. 2 Five of them were foolish, and five were wise. 3 The five who were foolish took no oil for their lamps, 4 but the other five were wise enough to take along extra oil. 5 When the bridegroom was delayed, they all lay down and slept. 6 At midnight they were roused by the shout, 'Look, the bridegroom is coming! Come out and welcome him!' 7 "All the bridesmaids got up and prepared their lamps. 8 Then the five foolish ones asked the others, 'Please give us some of your oil because our lamps are going out.' 9 But the others replied, 'We don't have enough for all of us. Go to a shop and buy some for yourselves.' 10 "But while they were gone to buy oil, the bridegroom came, and those who were ready went in with him to the marriage feast, and the door was locked. 11 Later, when the other five bridesmaids returned, they stood outside, calling, 'Sir, open the door for us!' 12 But he called back, 'I don't know you!' 13 "So stay awake and be prepared, because you do not know the day or hour of my return.
Matthew 25:1 COMMENTARY BY MATTHEW HENRY It was a custom sometimes used among the Jews on that occasion, that the bridegroom came, attended with his friends, late in the night, to the house of the bride, where she expected him, attended with her brides-maids; who, upon notice given of the bridegrooms' approach, were to go out with lamps in their hands, to light him into the house with ceremony and formality, in order to the celebrating of the nuptials with great mirth. And some think that on these occasions they had usually ten virgins; for the Jews never held a synagogue, circumcised, kept the passover, or contracted marriage, but ten persons at least were present.
Wednesday – The Divine Remedy
1 Peter 1:7 New International Reader's Version
Your troubles have come in order to prove that your faith is real. It is worth more than gold. Gold can pass away even though fire has made it pure. Your faith is meant to bring praise, honor and glory to God. That will happen when Jesus Christ returns.
1 Peter 1:7 COMMENTARY BY ADAM CLARKE As by the action of fire gold is separated from all alloy and heterogeneous mixtures, and is proved to be gold by its enduring the action of the fire without losing any thing of its nature, weight, colour, or any other property, so genuine faith is proved by adversities, especially such as the primitive Christians were obliged to pass through. For the word was then, "Renounce Jesus and live," "Cleave to him and die;" for every Christian was in continual danger of losing his life.
Zechariah 3:1-5 New King James Version
1 Then he showed me Joshua the high priest standing before the Angel of the Lord, and Satan standing at his right hand to oppose him. 2 And the Lord said to Satan, "The Lord rebuke you, Satan! The Lord who has chosen Jerusalem rebuke you! Is this not a brand plucked from the fire?" 3 Now Joshua was clothed with filthy garments, and was standing before the Angel. 4 Then He answered and spoke to those who stood before Him, saying, "Take away the filthy garments from him." And to him He said, "See, I have removed your iniquity from you, and I will clothe you with rich robes." 5 And I said, "Let them put a clean turban on his head." So they put a clean turban on his head, and they put the clothes on him. And the Angel of the Lord stood by.
Revelation 19:7-9 Holman Christian Standard Bible
7 Let us be glad, rejoice, and give Him glory, because the marriage of the Lamb has come, and His wife has prepared herself. 8 She was permitted to wear fine linen, bright and pure. For the fine linen represents the righteous acts of the saints. 9 Then he said to me, "Write: Blessed are those invited to the marriage feast of the Lamb!" He also said to me, "These words of God are true."
Ephesians 4:30 New Living Translation
And do not bring sorrow to God's Holy Spirit by the way you live. Remember, he is the one who has identified you as his own, guaranteeing that you will be saved on the day of redemption.
Thursday - A Relentless Love
Revelation 3:20 New Century Version
Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If you hear my voice and open the door, I will come in and eat with you, and you will eat with me.
Revelation 3:20 SDA BIBLE COMMENTARY Not the door of proffered opportunity, nor the door of salvation. These doors God shuts and opens. The door here referred to is under the control of man, and each person may open or shut it at will. Christ awaits each man’s decision. This is the door to a man’s soul. By His love, through His word, and through His providences, Christ knocks at the door of the emotions; by His wisdom, at the door of the mind; by His lordship, at the door of the conscience; and by His promises, at the door of man’s hopes.
Song of Solomon 5:2-5 Common English Bible
2 [Woman]I was sleeping, but my heart was awake. A sound! My love is knocking: [Man]"Open for me, my sister, my dearest, my dove, my perfect one! My head is soaked with dew, my hair, with the night mists." 3 [Woman]"I have taken off my tunic— why should I put it on again? I have bathed my feet— why should I get them dirty?" 4 My love put his hand in through the latch hole, and my body ached for him. 5 I rose; I went to open for my love, and my hands dripped myrrh, my fingers, liquid myrrh, over the handles of the lock.
Revelation 3:21 Good News Translation
To those who win the victory I will give the right to sit beside me on my throne, just as I have been victorious and now sit by my Father on his throne.
Revelation 3:21 COMMENTARY BY ADAM CLARKE This is the worst of the seven Churches, and yet the most eminent of all the promises are made to it, showing that the worst may repent, finally conquer, and attain even to the highest state of glory.