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Bible study lesson 18

Lesson 18 – The Remnant Church

Purpose: To show that Christ’s Word is leading all of His sheep into one fold.  The Seventh-day Adventist church is the Remnant.

Theme: Jesus gives His life for His sheep and we are inspired to join the Remnant because of that.

Bible verses to read:

  • 1 Corinthians 14:33
  • John 10:12
  • John 10:16
  • 2 Timothy 3:16
  • 1 Timothy 3:15
  • Revelation 12:17
  • John 5:39
  • Revelation 14:6-7
  • John 10:16

Why are there so many denominations today?  Does it matter what church you go to?  Why are there so many conflicting doctrines out there if everything is being taught out of the Bible?  You may have thought about one or more of these questions before.  These are some of the questions we will be answering as we study together today in the lesson about the remnant church!

Let’s turn to 1 Corinthians 14:33.

- According to this verse, does God want confusion in His churches?

  • Answer (highlight to read): No, God wants peace in His churches.

Is it confusing that multiple churches teach different, sometimes even conflicting things from the same book.  Yes.

Is it confusing that there are so many denominations out there today?  Yes.  (As of this writing, there are over 200 denominations in the United States.  That is a lot of different choices!)

Is this God’s intention, plan, or design?  No!  God does not want this at all.  If God is not the author of all this confusion, then who is?

Let’s turn to John 10:10-14

- According to these verses, what does the wolf do to the sheep?

  • Answer: The wolf catches and scatters the sheep.

Jesus is the Shepherd that gives His life for the sheep.  Who is the wolf then?  The devil.

Let’s turn to John 10:16.

- According to this verse, what is Jesus’ plan to bring back the scattered sheep back to the fold?

  • Answer: The sheep will hear His voice.

Jesus’ intention is to unite His people by His voice.  But, what does He mean by this, exactly?  How do you hear Jesus’ voice?

Let’s turn to 2 Timothy 3:16.

- According to this verse, how much of Scripture is inspired by God?

  • Answer: All of it.

In the literal Greek translation of this verse, Scripture is “God-breathed.”   Scripture is the Word of God and His voice.  It is His way of communicating to His people.

Now, let’s find out what are some of the characteristics of God’s true church.

Let’s turn to 1 Timothy 3:15. 

- According to this verse, what is a characteristic of God’s true church?

  • Answer: It is the pillar and ground of truth.

The ground of truth = foundation.

The church is the pillar (foundation) of truth.  The church is to hold up the truth.

Can you be the upholder of truth if you are teaching what is false?  No.

Do you think God tortures people through the ceaseless ages of eternity?  No.

If your church teaches this false doctrine, can it be the church of God?  No.

Now, let me be clear here.  There are many good and honest Christians who are going to these churches that teach these false doctrines.  They are true people within the folds of other churches who are living up to the light they are given to the best of their ability.  I am certainly not suggesting that they will be lost just because they go to the wrong church.

However, Jesus makes it clear in John 10:16 that He wants to bring all these people out of the wrong churches to go to His one true church.

Let’s turn to Revelation 12:17.

- According to this verse, what are two characteristics of God’s people?

  • Answer: They keep the commandments of God and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.

The devil was really mad at those who were like the Apostles in keeping the doctrines, commandments, teachings, faith, and Spirit of God.  The devil wants to make war against these people who have the commandments of God and testimony of Jesus.

From this verse, we find that God’s true church does not teach the idea that grace alleviates the follower from the moral responsibility of following God’s law as expressed in the Ten Commandments.  Rather, God’s true church teaches followers to uphold God’s law and keep the commandments. 

Also, we find that the church has the testimony of Jesus.  But just what is the testimony of Jesus?

Let’s turn to John 5:39.

- According to this verse, what does Jesus say testifies of Him?

  • Answer: The Scriptures.

What Scriptures would Jesus have been talking about then at that time?  He would be talking about the Old Testament, because the New Testament was not written yet.

Therefore, God’s true church will believe that the Old Testament is relevant and useful for New Testament Christians.

We do not believe the Old Testament in the same way as what first century Jews thought about it.  Rather, we believe the Old Testament in the way that Jesus and the Apostles understood and believed the Old Testament to be.  The Apostles wrote the New Testament with their true understanding of Old Testament teachings. 

I do not believe the Old Testament the same way the Jews did.  I believe it the way the Apostles did!

Revelation 12 identifies that there is a remnant of God’s people and Revelation 14 describes the work of that remnant.

Let’s turn to Revelation 14:6-7.

- According to these verses, who is the angel preaching the everlasting Gospel to?

  • Answer: Everyone who dwells on earth – all nations, tribes, tongues and people.

- According to these verses, what is the angel saying about judgment?

  • Answer: Judgment has come.

God’s true church teaches a pre-Advent judgment – a present tense judgment.

In addition, God’s true church will have a worldwide focus in the preaching of the Gospel message.  Can you preach to every nation if you are not at those nations?  God’s true church will establish a presence in every nation.

In summary, God’s true church will have these characteristics:

  1. Foundation of truth
  2. Keep God’s commandments
  3. Have the testimony of Jesus/believe in the Old Testament
  4. Present tense judgment (i.e. judgment is come)
  5. Worldwide focus/presence

Let’s turn to John 10:16 and read it together one more time.

John 10:16 - And other sheep I have which are not of this fold; them also I must bring, and they will hear My voice; and there will be one flock and one shepherd.

Is Jesus your Shepherd?  Is He calling you into His fold?

I know where you are at right now.  I was there myself once.  After studying what the Bible actually says about Biblical doctrines like hell, death, and the Sabbath, I made a decision.  I wanted to follow Jesus with all my heart and worship Him on the Sabbath, God’s true day of worship.

I won’t lie to you, it was rough at first.  My friends thought I was weird for not wanting to go out and party with them on Friday nights.  My friends thought I was even crazier for deciding not to study on Saturdays anymore.  “You’re losing a competitive edge and you won’t be able to get into the best grad schools if you don’t study every single day!” they would chide me.

Pretty much everyone I knew thought it was so strange to go to church on Saturdays instead of Sundays.  “Why are you going to that church?” they would ask.  “Isn’t it like a cult, or something?  Besides, everyone is going on Sundays!  How can it be wrong if everyone else is doing it?”

My friend, I tell you that I became a Seventh-day Adventist Christian because it was the only church that I found it to be the closest to the truth of what the Bible teaches.  I only became an Adventist because there was nowhere else to go!

While I did lose some friends because of my decision and I missed out on some cozy job opportunities because I did not want to work on the Sabbath, I have no regrets.  Why, you might ask?  Every time I get even close to thinking about any regrets, I think about Jesus.  He lost His friends.  He was slandered, vilified, spat upon, and humiliated.  He did not have to do this, but He endured the cross and died a death He did not deserve on the cross, so you and I could have a life we do not deserve.

Jesus stood up for the truth…how can you or I do any less?  People may call Adventists cultists or fanatics, but I know the truth and will stand up for it like my Lord and Savior Jesus.  I am calling you to join the remnant and to contribute your talents to use for the three angels’ message!

Are you willing to follow the voice of God even if it is uncomfortable?  Do you desire to enter into His fold?