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Showing Revision 26 created 09/06/2019 by Colin Preston.

  1. ♪ theme music ♪
  2. (Derek) Welcome to Hope Sabbath School,
  3. an in-depth, interactive study
  4. of the Word of God.
  5. I'm glad you joined us today;
    we are enjoying
  6. a very practical series of studies,
  7. Ministering to "the Least of These":
    People in Need,
  8. and our topic today:
  9. Living the Advent Hope.
  10. What does it mean to live the Gospel
  11. in these last days of Earth's history?
  12. I'm excited about the topic,
    and I'm excited
  13. because one of our team, Stephanie,
  14. is going to be teaching today,
    great topic.
  15. We've got a great team here to share,
  16. and you're with us, too.
  17. And we always love to hear
    interactions from you.
  18. I'm excited when people write and say,
  19. "Here's my response to the question
  20. that Stephanie asked."
  21. You can write to us at sshope@hopetv.org.
  22. We're glad you're part
  23. of our international Hope Sabbath School
    family.
  24. And we want to thank you
    for writing to us.
  25. Here are just a few notes.
  26. Tomson writes from Zambia and says,
  27. "I watch Hope TV, and I enjoy
  28. Hope Sabbath School.
  29. Thank you, dear brothers
  30. and sisters in Christ.
  31. May the God, the Holy Spirit,
  32. continue to be with us
  33. until the day Jesus comes." Amen?
  34. (Team) Amen.
  35. (Derek) You know, we've got
  36. lots of Hope Sabbath School members
  37. there in Zambia, and I want to thank you
  38. for being part of our team.
  39. You know, I had to write to this lady;
  40. her name is Het (H-E-T), Het Jane.
  41. She's from Brazil, and I had
    to write and say,
  42. "Is that how your name is spelled,
  43. and how do I say it?" and it's Het.
  44. And Het writes and says, "We have
  45. an English Sabbath School class here
  46. at Sao Paulo Adventist University.
  47. Since I have decided to help the class
  48. as one of the teachers,
  49. I started to search
  50. the internet for some material
  51. and comments about Bible study,
  52. and I found Hope Sabbath School!"
  53. (Team) Amen!
  54. (Derek) We're glad, Het,
  55. that you did find Hope Sabbath School.
  56. She says, "It's been quite helpful to me,
  57. and every week I look forward
  58. to watch new episodes,
  59. not only for the task
  60. of leading the class,
  61. but for my own encouragement
  62. and spiritual enrichment.
  63. May God bless you all."
  64. Well, Het, we're just glad that you're
  65. leading an in-depth, interactive class
  66. there at a university
  67. in Sao Paulo, Brazil.
  68. God bless you and those
  69. who study with you.
  70. Here's a hand-written note
  71. from a donor in California,
  72. "Dear Pastor, thank you
  73. for Hope Sabbath School.
  74. It's been a blessing to me.
  75. I found Hope Channel
  76. on DirecTV, channel 368,
  77. when I was hopeless and looking
  78. for someone to study the Bible with me."
  79. (Team) Wow. Amen.
  80. (Derek) "Love you; you are my family.
  81. God bless you all,"
  82. and a donation of 25 dollars.
  83. We are glad, California Donor,
  84. that you're part of our family. Amen?
  85. (Team) Amen.
  86. (Derek) We've learned
  87. we've all got one Father and one God
  88. who's the Creator of all.
  89. And we really believe
  90. in a study of the Word of God,
  91. because it points us
  92. to our loving Creator God and Savior.
  93. Marek writes to us from Poland
  94. and says, "I welcome you,
  95. brothers and sisters in Christ.
  96. I've not heard about a school
  97. like Hope Sabbath School before.
  98. I'm inquiring, and the Lord has led me
  99. to know more about the Bible with you."
  100. (Team) Amen!
  101. (Derek) "Every quoted verse
  102. brings me closer to revealing
  103. the personality of Christ
    and God Himself."
  104. (Team) Amen.
  105. (Derek) "Please pray
  106. for the successful completion
  107. of a house of prayer in my city.
  108. I'm praying for a blessing
  109. for the Bible classes
  110. that you are conducting.
  111. And you are welcome to Poland;
  112. it's a beautiful country."
  113. (Team) Amen.
  114. (Derek) "God bless you, Marek."
  115. Well, Marek, we're just glad you're part
  116. of our Hope Sabbath School family,
  117. and if we're ever in Poland...I know
  118. there are probably 10,000 Mareks there,
  119. but we're glad that you are part
  120. of our Hope Sabbath School family.
  121. Thanks for writing to us.
  122. One last note, from Joe in Kenya,
  123. and Joe writes (we've got
  124. some Kenyans on our team),
  125. "May the Good Lord be with you.
  126. As I write, I'm filled with joy
  127. to share messages of love with you all.
  128. I feel the love of our King Jesus
    around all of us.
  129. You see, my spiritual journey
  130. has mainly been through the internet."
  131. There are a lot of bad things
    on the internet,
  132. but we need to have
  133. the Good Word there, too, right?
  134. (Team) Amen.
  135. (Derek) "I am a living testimony
  136. of how Christ delivers."
  137. (Team) Amen.
  138. (Derek) "And as I sing along
  139. with every Bible study,
  140. I have joy in my heart.
  141. Praise be to God, for as of now,
  142. even on my spiritual journey,
  143. I've become a deacon in my church."
  144. (Team) Amen.
  145. (Derek) "Last Christmas I shared
  146. a Bible study with my father
  147. and taught him the facts about the Bible.
  148. At first, he saw me as his son
  149. who could not teach him anything,
  150. but through Christ, he was amazed."
  151. (Team) Amen. Wow.
  152. (Derek) You know, I just want to thank you
  153. for writing to us.
  154. These are beautiful testimonies,
    aren't they?
  155. "My dad still doesn't understand
  156. how it all came about
  157. to happen to me,
  158. but slowly, through Jesus,
  159. I'm going to teach him the Word of God."
  160. (Team) Amen!
  161. (Derek) "Shalom, and God bless
    all of you. Joe."
  162. (Derek) Well, Joe, you are
  163. a miracle in progress,
  164. as are each one of us;
  165. we're all a miracle in progress.
  166. And as we prepare for the soon coming
    of Jesus,
  167. we want to study today
  168. what it means to live the Advent hope,
    and I'm excited.
  169. But before Stephanie prays
  170. and leads us in the study,
  171. we're going to sing our theme song.
  172. It's become one of my favorite
    Scripture songs
  173. from 2 Thessalonians 3, verses 5 and 16,
  174. "Now may the Lord direct your hearts
  175. into the love of God."
  176. Let's sing it together.
  177. ♪ music ♪
  178. (Derek) What a beautiful promise,
  179. even as we study today
  180. about Living the Advent Hope.
  181. (Stephanie) All right, let's pray
    as we study.
  182. Dear Heavenly Father, Lord, thank You
  183. so much for the opportunity
  184. to study Your Word and to read
  185. the hope that we have in You.
  186. Teach us today; in Jesus' name. Amen.
  187. (Derek, Team) Amen.
  188. (Stephanie) So our study today
  189. is about the Advent hope.
  190. If you were going to define Advent hope,
  191. how would you define that? Travis.
  192. (Travis) I would define it
  193. as the Second Coming or the hope
  194. of the Second Coming of Jesus.
  195. (Stephanie) The hope of the Second Coming
    of Jesus.
  196. So let me ask you this:
  197. How would you define hope? Jason.
  198. (Jason) If I could read a Scripture,
  199. would that be okay, to define it?
  200. (Stephanie) Sure, which Scripture
    were you thinking?
  201. (Jason) Romans, the eighth chapter,
  202. and twenty-fourth verse.
  203. (Stephanie) Romans, chapter 8, verse 24.
  204. Let's see, Romans, chapter 8, verse 24,
  205. and this is going to define
    what hope is. Okay.
  206. (Jason) And I'll be reading
  207. from the New King James Version,
  208. and the Bible says:
  209. (Stephanie) All right,
    so hope is something
  210. that we haven't seen yet, right?
  211. Because if we've seen it,
  212. it's no longer hope.
  213. All right. Jason.
  214. (Jason) The word that comes to mind
  215. is an expectation,
  216. and in this context particularly,
  217. of something you're looking forward to.
  218. (Stephanie) Something that you're
    looking forward to.
  219. So I have this question for you, then:
  220. Who needs a hope?
  221. Who needs the Advent hope?
  222. (Team) Everyone. All of us.
  223. (Stephanie) Everyone does, that's right.
  224. So, when you're ministering to someone,
  225. could we say that we could
    minister to everyone
  226. by giving them the hope of the Advent,
  227. of the Second Coming? Yes, Travis.
  228. (Travis) I think that you
  229. really can't have hope
  230. unless you have a promise.
  231. (Stephanie) Unless you have a promise.
  232. Okay, so unpack that.
  233. (Travis) If someone's promised
    me something,
  234. I have hope in receiving that.
  235. And the hope that we look for
  236. comes from promises that we're given
  237. from the Scriptures.
  238. (Stephanie) That's right; you're
    absolutely right.
  239. (Derek) Good point.
  240. (Stephanie) Nicole.
  241. (Nicole) When Travis said that, I thought
    it's an eager awaiting of something,
  242. because you're eagerly awaiting something,
  243. whether it's a gift,
  244. whether it's the Advent, whatever it is,
  245. it's an "eager awaiting," when I think
    of the word hope.
  246. (Stephanie) I like that.
  247. And so we're thinking
  248. about this Advent hope,
  249. and we're looking for something
  250. that has been promised to us, right?
  251. And the reason we would hope
  252. in the Second Coming
  253. is because it's a better life, right?
  254. It's not just here and now;
  255. this is not our home, right?
  256. So, why would we want a better life?
  257. And I'm just setting a foundation here.
  258. Why would we want a better life?
  259. Because this world's damaged.
  260. It's very simple; this is not God's plan,
  261. and this is something that is not new.
  262. We know that people
  263. throughout the ages
  264. have looked at the world we live in,
  265. and they all have a common theme.
  266. So I'd like us to look
  267. at three passages as we begin.
  268. The first one is Psalm 94, and we'll
  269. be looking at verses 3 through 7.
  270. Gladys, if you could take that one.
  271. And then, Marcus, if you would be ready
  272. to read Habakkuk 1, verse 2,
  273. and, Evelyn, Revelation 6, verse 10.
  274. We're just going to read
  275. through these verses,
  276. and as we're reading, I'd like you
  277. to think about what the common theme
  278. is throughout. Gladys.
  279. (Gladys) I'm reading
  280. from the New International Version,
  281. Psalm 94, verses 3 to 7:
  282. (Stephanie) Thank you. Marcus.
  283. (Marcus) Okay, Habakkuk 1, verse 2,
  284. and I'll give everyone a moment
    to get there.
  285. I'll be reading from
    the King James Version:
  286. (Stephanie) And Evelyn,
  287. Revelation, chapter 6, verse 10.
  288. (Evelyn) Revelation, chapter 6, verse 10,
  289. I'll be reading from the
    New King James Version:
  290. (Stephanie) What is the common theme
  291. that you're hearing? Treva?
  292. (Treva) There is a crying out
  293. to the Father for justice,
  294. for something to be done
  295. because of some type of persecution.
  296. (Stephanie) Desire for freedom
  297. from persecution. Gladys.
  298. (Gladys) I like that the three verses
    say, "How long?"
  299. So, just going back to the definition
  300. that we were giving, you know,
  301. it's like expecting something
  302. that has been promised.
  303. (Stephanie) Do these passages
  304. give you the impression that this person
  305. is feeling somewhat hopeless?
  306. (Team) Yes.
  307. (Stephanie) "What do we have?"
  308. "How long are we going
  309. to be in this state?"
  310. Where do people find hope?
  311. Let me put it this way,
  312. where do people search to find hope?
  313. Or to find a future?
  314. Marcus and then Jason.
  315. (Marcus) I would say,
  316. and in this country especially,
    like politics.
  317. People always hope that the next president
  318. or the next governor
  319. or the next whoever
  320. will be there to deliver them
  321. some type of reward
  322. or restitution for their suffering.
  323. (Stephanie) So, they're looking
  324. for people to give them hope. Jason.
  325. (Jason) I think people
  326. can look for relationships,
  327. whether it's a significant other
  328. or getting into a marriage
  329. or something like that.
  330. They can think that a relationship,
  331. a friendship, just having another person
  332. will give them that hope.
  333. (Stephanie) Puia.
  334. (Puia) I think people also
  335. look for hope in possessions.
  336. It could be money or things, you know.
  337. (Stephanie) Looking for hope
  338. in people, in possessions.
  339. How about positions? Possible?
    All right. Jason.
  340. (Jason) Sometimes people can
  341. look to themselves for hope,
  342. as far as what they can do.
  343. They become self-absorbed
  344. in what they can do
  345. and try to make different moves
  346. or different ways of them finding hope
  347. into the situation that they may be in.
  348. (Stephanie) All right. Now, I'd like
  349. to go over to Lamentations,
  350. chapter 3, verses 22 through 26,
  351. and, Adison, if you would be prepared
  352. to read that for us.
  353. And let's take a look at what the prophet
  354. has found his hope in.
  355. And this is during some troublesome times,
    right?
  356. Lamentations, chapter 3,
  357. verses 22 through 26.
  358. (Adison) I'm reading
  359. from the King James Version:
  360. (Stephanie) I don't know about you,
  361. but when I hear those verses,
  362. it just gives me hope, right?
  363. It gives me energy.
  364. Where did the prophet find his hope,
  365. or choose to find hope?
  366. (Derek) Actually, the next verse
  367. says, "'The Lord is my portion,'
  368. says my soul, 'Therefore I hope in Him!'"
  369. So that's where he chooses.
  370. And like you said, this is
  371. where Jerusalem has just been ransacked,
  372. the temple is in ruins,
  373. and Jeremiah is lamenting.
  374. That's where the Lamentations book
    comes from.
  375. He's lamenting, but he says,
  376. "My hope is in God."
  377. (Team) Amen.
  378. (Stephanie) And through all
    of that turmoil,
  379. that's where he placed his hope.
  380. And, I don't know, it just gives me
  381. such encouragement when I hear,
  382. "'The Lord is my portion,'
  383. saith my soul'...The Lord
  384. is good unto them that wait for Him."
  385. It just buoys up your spirits.
  386. Now, Jesus also speaks
  387. about where to find our hope
  388. or encourages us through a parable
  389. in Luke, chapter 18, and we'll go there,
  390. and, Billy, if you would read that for us,
  391. Luke, chapter 18, verses 1 through 8.
  392. And as we're reading through that parable,
  393. I'd like us to think about what is
  394. Jesus saying to us about finding
  395. our hope in God? Billy.
  396. (Billy) Okay, so I'll be reading
  397. from the King James Version:
  398. Is it to verse 5 or 6?
  399. (Stephanie) Through 8.
  400. (Billy) Through 8, okay:
  401. (Stephanie) All right. From this parable,
  402. what do we learn about finding
  403. our hope in God? Tricia Lee.
  404. (Tricia Lee) I think that Jesus
  405. is making an example,
  406. that even in an unjust situation -
  407. this earthly judge or court,
  408. if he was possibly unwilling
  409. to avenge her of her adversary
  410. as she's asking for the first time,
  411. eventually he did just because he was
  412. tired of hearing from her.
  413. And so He's making an example.
  414. If this earthly court
  415. or judge could act this way,
  416. your Heavenly Father, who is not tired
  417. when we call on Him,
  418. not tired when we pray to him,
  419. could never get tired of us,
  420. of course He will bring justice
    to our situation.
  421. And so Jesus is asking them,
  422. when He says, "Will the Son of Man
  423. find faith on the earth?"
  424. will you still believe that God
  425. will do justice for you,
  426. even though you don't see it right away?
  427. So that's really what He's saying
  428. because sometimes we ask for things,
    we don't get them right away
  429. or we're still in those situations.
  430. But Jesus is saying, "Do you have faith
    to continue hoping," knowing
  431. that the promise, as Travis mentioned,
    is sure.
  432. (Stephanie) Pray without ceasing, right?
  433. Did anyone else have a comment?
    All right, Marcus.
  434. (Marcus) Just, waiting really is
    the hardest part.
  435. And when you've been
  436. through situation where you might have
  437. lost somebody close to you,
  438. and it might have happened
  439. under tragic circumstances,
  440. can you still trust and put your faith
  441. and hope in the Lord,
  442. even though it just doesn't look like
  443. the situation is going to get resolved,
  444. or there's so much grief in your heart?
  445. So I think that the relationship
  446. that you have with Christ,
  447. that you have with the Father,
  448. will help sustain you,
  449. but it's not an easy wait.
  450. (Stephanie) It's never easy
    to wait, is it?
  451. So let me ask you this:
  452. When did you choose
  453. to find your hope in God?
  454. And I want to go a step further:
  455. What has your life been like
  456. since that decision?
  457. How has that changed your course? Nicole.
  458. (Nicole) It's not one decision for me.
  459. I think that I have to every day,
  460. and every time a new situation
    approaches me,
  461. I have to choose my hope in God.
  462. And so, it makes it challenging,
  463. because when things don't go my way,
  464. I have to wait on what He's going to do,
  465. but I think that for me
  466. it's an ongoing decision daily
  467. to make that decision that I'm
  468. going to hope in God and His return.
  469. (Stephanie) Amen. I appreciate that.
  470. Jason and then Gladys.
  471. (Jason) I have a testimony to share.
  472. I was in the military,
  473. in the navy, specifically,
  474. and I joined without being able to swim.
  475. So, go figure, right?
  476. So, through my time in boot camp,
    I tried to swim.
  477. I kept on being sent back,
  478. I was not qualified,
  479. maybe three or four times,
  480. but it came to a point
  481. that I had to pray to God,
  482. and I asked the Lord to help me
  483. because I wanted to graduate
    from boot camp.
  484. It just so happened I was doing my part.
  485. I was doing my little motions
    or what have you,
  486. praying and hoping
  487. that muscle memory would kick in.
  488. And when I went in the water for my test,
  489. I popped up, and I just remember
    it kicked in,
  490. and I could just thank
  491. the Lord all the way.
  492. It was an Olympic-sized swimming pool,
  493. so I swam from one end to another,
  494. and I thanked God the whole way.
  495. That's when the hope kicked in,
  496. because I knew it was a miracle.
  497. I knew I didn't do this on my own.
  498. So right then and there,
  499. I was thanking God,
  500. and that's when, from that point
  501. for me, swimming, by God's grace,
  502. it just elevated my faith
  503. in Him even more.
  504. If I could trust Him in this,
  505. I knew I could trust Him
  506. in other things in my life.
  507. (Stephanie) Gladys.
  508. (Gladys) I think that sometimes,
  509. when things are going easy,
  510. we read the words of God and His promises,
  511. and we say "Amen."
  512. But it's not till the moment
    of trial comes
  513. that that hope is really revealed.
  514. And I have shared with you guys before
  515. what happened with me
  516. a while ago with my surgery,
  517. and it's just like life comes
    to your face,
  518. and you just say, "Do I really
  519. trust God with my life?"
  520. When it's a situation of life and death,
  521. that's when you really look
  522. at what you believe.
  523. And if you have that hope
  524. that God has you in His hands,
  525. things are just totally different,
  526. and it is not until that moment
  527. that you realize Whom you have believed.
  528. (Stephanie) And Nicole mentioned something
  529. about that hope in the Second Coming,
  530. and I'd like to look at that hope
  531. as we move on in our lesson
  532. in Matthew, chapter 24 and 25.
  533. You know that it talks
  534. about the Second Coming of Christ,
  535. and it's definitely the center
  536. of our hope, right?
  537. It's a pivotal point
  538. of where we place our hope.
  539. I'd like to take a look
  540. at what we should be doing
  541. in the interim between now
  542. and the Second Coming
  543. because I have a feeling
  544. we're not supposed to just be sitting down
  545. and twiddling our thumbs.
  546. There's something for us to do.
  547. So let's look in Matthew 24,
  548. and we'll look at verses 45 to 51,
  549. and, Travis, if you
  550. would read that for us.
  551. (Travis) Matthew, chapter 24,
  552. verses 45 to 51, I'll be reading
  553. from the New King James Version:
  554. (Stephanie) So, what does
  555. that passage say that we should be doing?
  556. (Gladys) Diligently working.
  557. (Stephanie) Diligently working.
  558. What else do you see there?
  559. Providing for the needs.
  560. "Blessed is the servant
  561. whom the Lord, when He comes,
  562. shall find him so doing."
  563. In verse 45, "When the faithful
    and wise servant,
  564. whom the Lord hath made
  565. ruler of the household,
  566. to give them meat in due season."
  567. So that means feeding those
  568. that they have responsibility over,
  569. doesn't it? Yes, Tricia Lee.
  570. (Tricia Lee) There's also conflict
  571. that's taking place here.
  572. It talks about one servant
  573. is beating another servant,
  574. or they're beating their fellow servants
  575. and start to eat and drink with drunkards.
  576. And so it's this attitude that,
  577. if you lose your sight of the hope
  578. that the Lord is coming,
  579. the whole purpose, like,
  580. what are we here for,
  581. you start to get involved
  582. in disagreements or petty arguments,
  583. like, "Why are you beating each other?"
  584. And then the eating and drinking,
  585. it's like, to your point,
  586. they're just sitting back.
  587. It's like, we have work to do.
  588. We should be preparing
  589. for the Lord to come.
  590. It's as if the party started already,
  591. and it's the wrong type of party.
  592. And so, they've completely lost sight
  593. of what the focus is,
  594. and I think that's a danger.
  595. They start to fight amongst themselves,
  596. and they start having the party
  597. a bit too early, and the wrong
  598. type of party, in fact.
  599. (Stephanie) And let's move over,
  600. thank you very much, Tricia Lee,
  601. let's move to chapter 25
  602. and look at verses 14 and 15.
  603. And, Jason, if you would be willing
  604. to read that for us.
  605. This also gives us a choice.
  606. It shows us the options that we have.
  607. Let's go ahead and read
  608. verses 14 and 15 of Matthew 25.
  609. (Jason) I'll be reading
  610. from the New King James Version,
  611. Matthew, chapter 25, verses 14 and 15:
  612. (Stephanie) So, what are the options
  613. that these individuals have?
  614. They'd been given talents.
  615. What are the talents?
  616. What does that represent? Gifts? Skills?
  617. (Derek) In that culture,
  618. a talent was 6,000 days wages,
  619. so that's 20 years wages,
  620. even to the smallest portion.
  621. So, a massive amount of resource
  622. was given, according to the Master's plan,
    to each of them
  623. with no specific instructions,
  624. except maybe their relationship
  625. would determine how they
  626. would use those resources.
  627. (Stephanie) That's right. Travis.
  628. (Travis) Well, the fact
  629. that they're called "servants,"
  630. servants means there is a responsibility
  631. with the resource.
  632. And I like the fact that Derek
  633. used the word "resource,"
  634. because resource can mean many things.
  635. Resource can be information,
  636. resource can be monetary, resource
  637. can be different responsibilities,
  638. but they're servants.
  639. So, when you're a servant,
  640. and the Master gives you a resource,
  641. there's a responsibility
  642. that comes with that resource.
  643. (Stephanie) All right,
  644. so they have options,
  645. either to use that resource wisely
  646. or to choose not to use it wisely.
  647. How do we relate that
  648. to what we should be doing
    in our day
  649. between now and the Second Coming
    of Christ? Treva.
  650. (Treva) I think also in the Scripture,
  651. we talked about this before,
  652. where people may feel like,
  653. "Well, what can I offer? What can I do?"
  654. And this Scripture shows us
  655. that God has given us something,
  656. some type of resource,
  657. even if it's your testimony,
  658. which is one of the most powerful things
  659. you can share to bring people
    closer to Christ.
  660. So, if anything, that's
  661. what we should be doing.
  662. (Stephanie) All right. Tricia Lee,
  663. I see you're ready to say something.
  664. (Tricia Lee) Just a great question
    that you're asking
  665. because we all have talents.
  666. Even just this week my husband and I
    were commenting
  667. about a very popular musician,
  668. someone in the music industry,
    who's in trouble.
  669. And we're thinking to ourselves,
  670. "What if this individual
  671. had used these gifts for the glory of God?
  672. Like, how many lives would he
  673. have impacted with his lyrics
    and his music.
  674. He's so skilled and talented,
  675. and yet it's like just headline
  676. after headline of negative things.
  677. And so we have a choice
  678. to invest in the Kingdom of God,
  679. which is spiritual, blessing others,
  680. or we have an opportunity to invest
  681. in the things that are passing away.
  682. There's no doubt that this person
    is talented,
  683. but the things that he spent
  684. his time investing in
  685. have not reaped anything beneficial
  686. to anyone in the long run.
  687. And so we could focus on our job
  688. or education or on things
  689. that might get us big wins in this life,
  690. but are we thinking about how we're
  691. using our skills to bless others,
  692. to bless and build the Kingdom of God.
  693. The option is there for us,
  694. but how do we use our skills
  695. to really build God's Kingdom.
  696. (Stephanie) I like that, and let's move on
  697. and look at some practical ways.
  698. And staying in Matthew, chapter 25,
  699. we'll be looking in verses 31 through 40,
  700. 31 through 40, and Puia,
  701. would you read that for us?
  702. We're looking at some practical ways
  703. of how we should be spending our time
    until Christ comes.
  704. (Puia) Sure, I'll be reading
  705. from the New King James Version,
  706. Matthew 25, verses 31 through 40:
  707. (Stephanie) Wow. So tell me,
  708. what have you learned from this passage
  709. as you've done your own study?
  710. Travis, and then we'll go to Gladys.
  711. (Travis) I remember reading in Matthew 7
  712. about a similar group,
  713. but this group said,
  714. "Look at what we've done,"
  715. and He said, "Depart from Me;
  716. I don't know you."
  717. And this group of people here,
  718. they're like, "When did we
    do this for You?"
  719. And I remember Billy's story
  720. in a lesson or two ago,
  721. and I can imagine Jesus saying to him,
  722. "You know, I had pizza with you that day."
  723. And he's going to be like,
  724. "When did this happen?"...
  725. (Stephanie) We'll have to go back
  726. and listen to that lesson now, right?
  727. (Travis) But it's just like,
  728. when we're doing things
  729. with compassion for somebody else,
  730. Jesus resonates with each
    and every person.
  731. And when you're doing something for them,
  732. it's like you're doing it for Jesus.
  733. And you didn't even realize it;
  734. that thought isn't even in your head.
  735. It's just like, "I want
    to help this person,"
  736. and Jesus says, "You've done it to Me."
  737. (Stephanie) And, Travis, I appreciate
  738. the fact that you brought out that verse
  739. that says, "I never knew you,"
  740. when they showed Him.
  741. So this is not about, "I'm working
  742. my way to Heaven," is it?
  743. (Stephanie, Team) No.
  744. (Stephanie) It's talking about having
  745. that connection that allows
  746. the love to flow out through us.
    Yes, Gladys.
  747. (Gladys) That is exactly what I was
    going to say,
  748. that when that connection is strong,
  749. you are just reflecting
  750. the character of God.
  751. The love of God is just flowing
    through you,
  752. so you don't even realize it.
  753. It just becomes part of who you are.
  754. So it is just second nature
  755. to you to help others.
  756. (Stephanie) Amen. Marcus.
  757. (Marcus) A little bit of context to add
  758. to what Travis was saying
  759. is that basically when those people said,
  760. "We did good things,"
  761. "We did good works as well,"
  762. and the Father and Jesus said,
  763. "Depart, I never knew you,"
  764. it's because their hearts
  765. weren't in the right place.
  766. So, what I'm trying to say is,
  767. a great work that is done
  768. for some type of self-glorification
  769. is not acceptable to God
  770. versus a small work
  771. that is done in self-sacrifice
  772. and with no self included in that work.
  773. So, a small work done for the Master
  774. is better than a large and great work
  775. with just a little bit of self
    injected in there.
  776. So, it's not the size
  777. of the work that we do,
  778. it is whether we have
  779. surrendered to the Master
  780. and want to give all glory
  781. and honor and praise to Him.
  782. (Stephanie) And that is amazing.
  783. I definitely agree with that.
  784. I do want to say that,
  785. if someone is watching,
  786. and they say, "But that person
  787. did bless me by their acts of kindnesss,
  788. even though they had
  789. selfishness in there,"
  790. can God use that?
  791. Absolutely, He can still use people,
  792. even though their hearts
  793. may not be in the right place.
  794. Anything else that stands out to you
  795. in this passage? Yes, Puia.
  796. (Puia) Not exactly from the verse here,
  797. but I remember an experience that I had
  798. a couple of years ago
  799. when I was serving
  800. as a student volunteer in Hawaii,
  801. and there was a family
  802. that needed help with moving,
  803. as they were moving
  804. from one part of the island
    to the other part.
  805. And they had so many things to carry,
  806. and they didn't have enough people
    to help them out,
  807. so they invited me.
  808. So I went there, and a lot
  809. of people were busy,
  810. so they couldn't stay behind.
  811. So they asked me if I could stay
  812. a little longer, and I did.
  813. And I went inside, and I helped
  814. paint the house and all of that.
  815. And I had forgotten all about it.
  816. The end of the year came,
  817. and it was time for me
  818. to leave the island,
  819. and the family invited me over.
  820. As I walked into the house,
  821. they said, "Puia, do you
  822. remember this time?"
  823. like, "Remember this wall?
  824. This was what you painted."
  825. I was like, "Oh, wait a minute.
  826. Yes, this is what I painted!"
  827. You know, it brought joy to them
    as well as me.
  828. The point is, sometimes
  829. it's not about trying to help people
    all the time.
  830. I think it's about asking God
  831. to put us in places
  832. where He wants to use us.
  833. And when we place ourselves
  834. in the place where God can use us,
  835. He will bring us to the people
  836. who need our help when the time is right.
  837. (Stephanie) Being connected.
  838. Now, there's another hope
  839. that we want to take a look at,
  840. which is closely connected
  841. with the Second Coming.
  842. And this is an event
  843. that will take place at Jesus' return.
  844. It was a precious truth
  845. that was boldly proclaimed
  846. by the early Christians
  847. found in Acts, chapter 4, verse 33.
  848. And, Tricia Lee, if you
  849. would read that for us.
  850. Let's find out what that truth
    and promise is.
  851. (Tricia Lee) Certainly, reading
  852. from the New King James Version:
  853. (Stephanie) What did they
  854. give testimony or witness to?
  855. (Stephanie, Team) The resurrection.
  856. (Stephanie) The resurrection. What had
    they just gone through?
  857. If you think about Acts, chapter 1,
  858. what had they just seen?
  859. The ascension, they had just seen
  860. their crucified, buried, and risen Savior
  861. leave in Acts, chapter 1.
  862. And so they are able to proclaim
  863. with power, "My Savior died,
  864. and He rose again," okay?
  865. Now, here's my question for us:
  866. What is the importance, why is it
  867. so important or pivotal to our hope,
  868. that Jesus rose again?
  869. And I'd like us...Travis, can you
  870. take us to 1 Corinthians, chapter 15?
  871. And we'll take a look
  872. at a few verses, 12 through 19,
  873. and then, Treva, if you would read
  874. verses 20 through 23.
  875. Let's see what the Bible says,
  876. how pivotal this truth
  877. of the resurrection is
  878. to Christians living today.
  879. (Travis) I'll be reading
  880. from the New King James Version,
  881. 1 Corinthians, chapter 15, 12 through 19:
  882. (Stephanie) So if Christ didn't rise,
  883. then what is the natural conclusion?
  884. We're still in our sins.
  885. There's no resurrection.
  886. We're miserable, there's no hope,
    that's right.
  887. Let's look at verses 20 through 23, Treva?
  888. (Treva) And I'll be reading
  889. from the New King James translation,
  890. 1 Corinthians, chapter 15,
  891. starting with verse 20:
  892. (Stephanie) So it's good news
  893. that Christ rose again, right?
  894. Now, does that mean
  895. that death is not a problem?
  896. No, death is an enemy.
  897. That's what the Bible says.
  898. It's an enemy, and it will be destroyed.
  899. But as Christians, Paul says
  900. that we don't sorrow
  901. as those who have no hope.
  902. I'd like us to turn over, and, Nicole,
  903. if you would read this for us,
  904. 1 Thessalonians 4, verses 13 through 18,
  905. and see why we can have this hope. Nicole?
  906. (Nicole) 1 Thessalonians 4,
  907. verses 13 through 18,
  908. from the New International Version says:
  909. (Stephanie) Amen. Have you
  910. ever been encouraged
  911. by the truth of the resurrection? Puia.
  912. (Puia) I never got to see my grandfather.
  913. He passed away before I was born,
  914. my grandfather from my father's side.
  915. And last year, when I had
  916. the opportunity to go back home
  917. to my country, Myanmar,
  918. I asked my grandmother
  919. if we could visit my grandfather's grave,
  920. you know, the tombstone,
  921. because, to be honest,
  922. I never really remembered
  923. that I'd ever visited
  924. that place, the cemetery.
  925. So we went over there, and we realized
  926. that there were no more markings.
  927. It was just a stone,
  928. and the markings were almost gone.
  929. So I told my grandma, "Grandma,
  930. we have to do something about this.
  931. We need to create a new,
  932. at least a good-looking tombstone,
  933. so that people in the future, you know,
  934. maybe, who knows, in the future
  935. our families would like to come back
  936. and know that this is where
  937. our grandfather is laid at rest."
  938. Now, the thing about my grandfather was
  939. he was once an alcoholic.
  940. I knew at least that much about him.
  941. So in my mind, growing up,
  942. I used to wonder, question, you know,
  943. will I ever get to see
  944. my grandfather again,
  945. because, if he was an alcoholic,
  946. and if he did not really accept Jesus,
  947. then I didn't know
  948. if there could be any hope.
  949. That was the question
  950. that I had growing up
  951. because nobody ever told me
  952. much about his life,
  953. and all I knew was that he was
  954. never really someone who liked
  955. to go to church or read the Bible.
  956. So my grandmother said sure,
  957. so we called our family.
  958. We had a get together, we had a meal,
  959. and we talked about repairing the place
  960. where my grandfather is laid to rest.
  961. And in that process, one of my uncles
  962. stood up and shared
  963. a story about my grandpa.
  964. And one of the things he said was
  965. that just before my grandfather
    passed away,
  966. he said my grandfather was
  967. going through that moment of repentance.
  968. He said my grandfather was crying,
  969. he said, on his deathbed,
  970. saying, like, "Oh, am I to meet Jesus
  971. without bringing anyone along with me?"
  972. You know, without bringing anyone to Him.
  973. "Am I to meet my Lord?"
  974. With those dying words,
  975. my grandpa passed away.
  976. So, when he said that,
  977. I realized, "Wait a minute.
  978. My grandfather repented of his sin
  979. just before he passed away,
    and accepted Jesus!
  980. And that gave me so much hope,
  981. knowing that one day,
  982. when Jesus comes again,
  983. I will get to see my grandfather again.
  984. (Stephanie) Amen. I think all of us,
  985. I don't know about you,
  986. but in our minds,
  987. we're thinking about that person
  988. that we're going to meet.
  989. I know that I am, and, you know,
  990. as I think about that,
  991. we have such a hope
  992. in that resurrection morning.
  993. But some people are fearful of death,
  994. and they're fearful of death
  995. because of the judgment.
  996. They know, the Bible speaks
  997. that at the time of judgment,
  998. we will stand before the Judge,
  999. and the question is,
  1000. who is going to be with us, and what hope
  1001. do we have in this judgment?
  1002. So I'd like us to take a look
  1003. at John, chapter 5,
  1004. and verses 22 through 24,
  1005. and see what the Bible says
  1006. about the hope that we can have
  1007. even in the judgment.
  1008. John, chapter 5, verses 22 through 24,
  1009. and, Adison, would you read that for us?
  1010. (Adison) Sure, and I'm reading
  1011. from the King James Version:
  1012. (Stephanie) So, where do you
  1013. find hope in that passage? Tricia Lee.
  1014. (Tricia Lee) I think about the criminal
    justice system in the U.S.
  1015. There is a court, there is a judge,
  1016. there is a jury, there are
  1017. typically lawyers, prosecution
    and defense,
  1018. and there could be witnesses
    here or there.
  1019. If we read through the whole
  1020. Great Controversy themes of the Bible,
  1021. we're told that our great adversary,
  1022. the devil, is always trying to accuse us.
  1023. But here it's as if the system
  1024. is rigged in our favor, that the Person
  1025. who is advocating for us is Jesus,
  1026. the Person who is our
    greatest sacrifice is Jesus,
  1027. the One who is witnessing on our behalf
  1028. is still Jesus and the Holy Spirit
  1029. who knows the conversion process
    we've been through.
  1030. And now we find out that the judgment
  1031. is also being given to Jesus.
  1032. It's not as if we should take it lightly,
  1033. we can live our lives any way we want,
  1034. but we're seeing here that God
  1035. is literally doing everything He can
  1036. so that the ruling is in our favor.
  1037. If we accept His mercy and His sacrifice,
  1038. what He's doing for us,
  1039. it's like, how can we lose
  1040. when judgment is in favor of the saints?
  1041. it's in favor of His people.
  1042. (Stephanie) Amen. That's beautiful.
  1043. And I'd like for you to think
  1044. of maybe a Bible verse.
  1045. There's someone who may be watching today.
  1046. You may be watching us for the first time,
  1047. and you're wondering, "How can I
  1048. have hope in the time of judgment?"
  1049. So, what would you say to someone
  1050. who is wondering, "How do I
  1051. find hope even in the judgment?" Travis.
  1052. (Travis) I think of Romans,
  1053. chapter 5, verse 20.
  1054. (Stephanie) Romans, chapter 5, verse 20?
  1055. Would you like to read that for us?
  1056. (Travis) Sure, sure.
  1057. (Stephanie) Romans, chapter 5, verse 20,
  1058. and we're looking at hope
  1059. in the time of judgment.
  1060. All right, Romans, chapter 5,
  1061. (Travis) I'll be reading
  1062. from the New King James Version:
  1063. (Stephanie) So, unpack that a little bit.
  1064. What would you say to that person?
  1065. (Travis) So somebody who is fearful
  1066. of the judgment, has thought,
  1067. "I have so many sins in my life.
  1068. I have so many things in my life,"
  1069. but Jesus says if you confess your sins,
  1070. He is faithful to forgive us
  1071. and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
  1072. (Stephanie) First John 1:9?
  1073. (Travis) Yeah, and then I think,
  1074. "How could He ever do this?"
  1075. And we can go to Romans 5:20 and say,
  1076. "Where sin abounds,
  1077. grace abounds much more."
  1078. He has more grace than you have sin.
  1079. (Stephanie) Was there another verse?
    Yes, Jason.
  1080. (Jason) I've got an oldie but a goody.
  1081. (Stephanie) What verse would you
    like to read?
  1082. (Jason) It's Psalms,
  1083. the eighty-sixth chapter, verse 5.
  1084. (Stephanie) Psalm 86 and verse 5,
  1085. and we're looking at promises
  1086. for hope in the time of judgment.
  1087. (Jason) I'm reading
  1088. from the New King James Version,
  1089. and the Bible says:
  1090. So it just shows that God,
  1091. He's ready to forgive.
  1092. He's sitting there waiting
  1093. for us to come unto Him, you know,
  1094. to be forgiven of our sins,
    our trespasses,
  1095. so that He can just embrace us
  1096. like that picture in the Prodigal Son.
  1097. You know, the father, just waiting,
  1098. looking for his son to come to him,
  1099. so that he can embrace him,
  1100. so that's what I get from that.
  1101. (Stephanie) Derek.
  1102. (Derek) And that Scripture song
  1103. that Jason just read
  1104. was written by someone
  1105. who had committed adultery
  1106. and murdered someone and lied,
  1107. and damaged his family,
  1108. but had the courage to say,
  1109. "Create in me a clean heart, O God."
  1110. So he confessed his sins,
  1111. "Renew a right spirit within me."
  1112. And now he can write that testimony
  1113. because he's experienced it.
  1114. And I think hope comes,
  1115. even though we don't see, like you said,
  1116. we have seen what God is doing now,
  1117. and that gives us confidence
    in His promise.
  1118. (Stephanie) Yes, and that reminds me
  1119. of the verse in 1 John 4.
  1120. We won't read it, but there's
    no fear in love.
  1121. And when you have this,
  1122. when you know that God loves you,
  1123. and that Jesus loves you,
  1124. that fear at the time of judgment,
  1125. because He's standing
    beside you, it is, it's gone.
  1126. We want to move on to our last hope
  1127. that we're going to look at,
  1128. which is hope realized
  1129. in the new heavens and the new Earth.
  1130. And I'd like us to take a look.
  1131. We know that from 2 Peter
  1132. that this new heavens and a new Earth,
  1133. this is where righteousness dwells.
  1134. When you hear that, what do you think of?
  1135. What comes to your mind?
  1136. (Derek) My favorite Hebrew word,
    Hallelujah,
  1137. you know, because it doesn't dwell here.
  1138. I mean, we seek to let righteousness
    be revealed
  1139. but there's so much darkness
  1140. in this present world.
  1141. (Stephanie) Right, and we
    can't even imagine.
  1142. I think that we're so blinded
  1143. to the reality of what sin
  1144. has done to our world
  1145. that we can't even imagine
  1146. what that would look like,
  1147. except Revelation, chapter 21 and 22,
  1148. and, you know, I think we're
  1149. just going to go ahead
  1150. and read verses 1 through 5
  1151. in Revelation, chapter 21.
  1152. And, Evelyn, if you
  1153. would read that for us.
  1154. And then we'll read verses 1 through 5
  1155. in chapter 22 of this same book
    in Revelation.
  1156. And, Jason, would you
  1157. be prepared to read that.
  1158. So, Revelation 21, verses 1 through 5.
  1159. (Evelyn) I will be reading
  1160. from the New King James Version:
  1161. (Stephanie) True and faithful words.
  1162. Jason, would you read for us
  1163. Revelation 22, verses 1 through 5?
  1164. (Jason) I'll be reading
  1165. from the New King James Version,
  1166. Revelation, chapter 22,
  1167. verses 1 through 5:
  1168. (Stephanie) Amen. And, by the way,
  1169. in the next verse, it says
  1170. that these words are faithful and true.
  1171. So, some people think
  1172. that this is a fairytale.
  1173. Do you believe the Word of God?
  1174. (Team) Yes.
  1175. (Stephanie) Can you imagine
  1176. what that will be like? Wow.
  1177. (Derek) And the reason we can
    believe, Stephanie,
  1178. is because He's been so faithful
  1179. with the other promises He's given us.
  1180. He's given us freedom
  1181. from the guilt of sin.
  1182. He's given us a new heart.
  1183. We've seen the miracles, healings
  1184. that he's done in our friends' lives.
  1185. This is not just something
    we're imagining.
  1186. It's based on our relationship with Him,
  1187. that we trust His promise.
  1188. (Stephanie) As you think about it...
  1189. And we've looked at the hope
  1190. that we have in God. Why?
  1191. Because we know that we're
  1192. in a broken world.
  1193. We have hope in God.
  1194. We have hope in the Second Coming
    of Jesus.
  1195. We have hope in the resurrection
  1196. because of Jesus.
  1197. We have hope at the time of judgment
  1198. because Jesus will stand beside us.
  1199. And we have hope in eternity with Jesus.
  1200. Isn't this something that we want
  1201. to share with others?
  1202. There are people that need
  1203. to hear about Jesus.
  1204. The hope that we have in Jesus,
    this Advent hope,
  1205. doesn't it make us want
  1206. to just get up and do something?
  1207. I hope that that's what we'll
  1208. walk away with today,
  1209. as we think about that,
  1210. that our hope really is in Jesus,
  1211. and we need to share that with others.
  1212. (Team) Amen.
  1213. (Derek) And I'm so glad
  1214. it's called Hope Sabbath School
  1215. because we've been talking
    about hope today.
  1216. And really that's just God's leading
  1217. because without hope, people die.
  1218. But we have hope in Jesus.
  1219. Thank you, Stephanie; thank you, team.
  1220. Thank you to you for joining us
  1221. for our study today.
  1222. And, yes, how can we keep
  1223. that hope to ourselves?
  1224. We need to share that hope,
    that Advent hope
  1225. with those around us.
  1226. Let's pray; Father in Heaven,
  1227. we're so blessed as we come
  1228. and believe Your Word.
  1229. You've been so faithful
  1230. to all of the other promises
  1231. that have been already fulfilled
    in our lives.
  1232. Thank You that Your Words
  1233. are faithful and true.
  1234. And thank You that we can
  1235. live the Advent hope
  1236. and share that hope with others.
  1237. In Jesus' name. Amen.
  1238. (Team) Amen.
  1239. (Derek) How can you keep
  1240. that hope to yourself
  1241. when there are people
  1242. who feel hopeless all around us.
  1243. Take that Advent hope
  1244. and make a difference
  1245. in the lives of those around you.
  1246. ♪ theme music ♪