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Sabbath School Lessons on The Spiritual Life - Experiencing Jesus Christ as Lord
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About the Author
Bruce N. Cameron, J.D.
is the author of these Sabbath School lesson study outlines. He is the Reed Larson Professor of Labor Law at Regent University School of Law. Professor Cameron has devoted his life to promoting the Gospel and defending believers. In addition to teaching at an overtly Christian law school, he continues his 37 year practice of law which is limited to the litigation of constitutional rights and religious freedom cases for employees. He holds an undergraduate degree from Andrews University and a Doctor of Law from Emory University School of Law.
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Lesson 2: Lord of Our Priorities *
Introduction: Often I ask myself "What should I do first?" It is an
important question to consider, because otherwise I find myself
working first on whatever has caught my attention, and not what is a
priority. Our lesson this week is about spiritual priorities. Do we
make spiritual matters a priority, or do we just take care of what
currently has our attention? Let's dive into our lesson and see what
God has to say on the subject of spiritual priorities!
- Lord of All
- Read Psalms 24:1. Over what is God master? (Everything.)
- Read Psalms 24:2. Why is God entitled to claim dominion
over everything? (Because He made it. He created
everything, therefore He owns it.)
- Assume you owned a business and your biggest and best
customer called. Would you set aside all of your other
work to deal with your best customer? (It would be foolish
to do anything else.)
- What does this business example teach us about making
God our first priority? (One reason to make God our
first priority is that He is our "best customer" in
that He has given us all that we have.)
- Read Psalms 24:3. Move this idea of approaching God into
another context. Assume one person owned your entire town.
What might cause you to need to approach the town owner?
(If you wanted authority to do something. If you wanted a
favor. If you had gratitude for being allowed to live in
- Read Exodus 19:5-6. What reason does God give for us
approaching Him? (We will be His representatives. We have
a special relationship with Him.)
- What kind of a representative is a priest? (One who
is supposed to act on behalf of God.)
- Let's return to Psalms 24:3-4. Read verse 4 in the context
of verse 3. God is in charge of everything, He has
openings for personal representatives. What qualifications
is God looking for in His personal representatives?
- "Clean hands and pure heart." Is God looking for
well-bathed people to be His representatives? (He is
looking for those who have pure thinking (heart)and
who do what is right (hands).
- "Not lift up his soul to an idol." What does it mean
to lift up your soul to an idol? (It means to serve
something other than God.)
- What in your life interferes with your
allegiance to God?
- What does this teach us about God's desire that
we make Him our first priority? (God tells us
that if we want to represent His authority, we
need to make Him the priority of our life.)
- "Swear by what is false." Is this just referring to
honesty? (Honesty is certainly part of it. However,
this seems to include promoting what is improper.)
- How would you summarize these three qualifications
for being God's representative? (God wants to be
first in our allegiance (no idol), He wants to be
first in our causes (no swearing by the false), He
wants our mind and our actions to reflect His will
(pure heart and clean hands).)
- How would you go about making God, His program and His
will a priority in your life?
- A Life Reflecting Our Priorities
- Read Luke 22:39-40. How can we use prayer to guide our
- When Jesus said that the disciples should pray that
they would not fall into temptation, what did that
have to do with their priorities? (Temptation seeks
to replace God's will for our life with Satan's will
for our life.)
- Read Luke 22:41-42. How did Jesus make God's will His
- Consider the words of Jesus: Jesus first tells His
Father what He would like. Is that the way we should
approach setting our priorities in life?
- What is the "bottom line" for Jesus? (He tells His
Father what He would prefer, but Jesus says, "I'm
going to do Your will regardless of My preferences.")
- In setting our priorities each day, is it reasonable
to tell God what we would like to do, pray that we
will not be overtaken by Satan's priorities, and
finish by saying that we want God's priorities to be
- Imagine that you just finished the prayer we discussed
above. What do you do next? How do you, as a practical
matter, follow up this prayer?
- Read Luke 6:46-48. What does God want from us? (Obedience.
This is what Jesus was offering His Father when He said,
"Not My will, but Your will.")
- Luke 6:47 gives us the steps to obedience. What are
they? (I see three steps. First, we make a conscious
decision to come to God. Second, we "hear" God's
word. Last, we put God's words into practice.)
- What does it mean to "hear" God's word? (It
primarily means what you are doing right now -
studying God's word, the Bible.)
- Read Luke 6:49. What is the failure of this builder? (Not
putting God's words into practice.)
- In this parable, what do you think the "house"
represents? (Your life!)
- What does the flood represent? (Difficult times. The
- If the house is your life, what personal benefit do
we get from making God our first priority? (This is
the wonderful "secret" about making God first - it
blesses our life.)
- Read Ephesians 5:28. This is not only one of my favorite
texts, I believe this is a text which goes far beyond the
marriage relationship. What lesson do we find in this text
about loving ourselves? (This is a fuller description of
the secret of making God first. God teaches us that if we
obey Him (by, for example, loving our spouse) that we will
be blessing ourselves. Making God our first priority, ends
up blessing us.)
- A Time Reflecting Our Priorities
- Read Mark 1:35 and Psalms 5:3. Neither of these texts give
us a command, they simply describe the fact that Jesus and
David approached God in the morning. Have you tried coming
to God by studying His word in the morning? If so, have
you found it better than coming in the evening? (As I am
writing this, it is morning and I am in a hotel. Just
before I read these texts in Mark and Psalms, I was
closing my computer because I thought it was check-out
time. I mentioned to my wife how important I had found it
to be for me to study and write these lessons in the
morning. She discovered that we had another hour before
check out, and I was able to continue working. The next
texts I read were these texts in Mark and Psalms - which
confirmed what I had just said to her!)
- In addition to offering to God a clearer mind in the
morning, what else does morning prayer and Bible study do
for us? (It helps to remind us of God's priorities for our
life that day.)
- Friend, God has a claim over your life because He created
you and then saved you from eternal death. Will you
determine every morning to come to Him and make His will
your priority for that day?
- Next week: Lord of Our Thoughts.
* Copr. 2005, Bruce N. Cameron, J.D. All scripture references are to the New International Version (NIV), copr. 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society, unless otherwise noted. Quotations from the NIV are used by permission of Zondervan Bible Publishers. Suggested answers are found within parentheses. The lesson assumes the teacher uses a blackboard or some other visual aid.