9: Beware of Covetousness-Sabbath School Lesson Teaching Plan

Prepared by William Earnhardt for Sabbath School class March 4, 2023.

Main Theme: By appreciating all God has done for us and given to us we can be happy and content without needing things we don’t have.

Read in Class: Isaiah 14:12-24. Discuss the main idea of this passage.

Study: What hints are given there about the fall of Lucifer? How did covetousness play a crucial role in that fall?

Apply: Read 1 Timothy 6:6, 7. How can focusing on what Paul writes here help protect us from covetousness?

Share: Your friend says he covets rich people’s fancy and homes and expensive cars, but all he does is daydream about these things. He says coveting is a pretty benign sin. In light of Ephesians 5:5 and Colossians 3:5 how do you answer your friend?

Read in Class: Joshua 7. Discuss the main idea of this passage.

Study: What happened after the powerful victory at Jericho, and what message should we take from this story for ourselves?

Apply: Think about how easily Achan could have justified his actions: well, it’s such a small amount compared to all the rest of the booty. No one will know, and what can it hurt? Besides, my family needs the money. How can we protect ourselves from this kind of dangerous rationalization?

Share: Your friend says it was not fair for God to allow Israel to suffer such a defeat just because of Achan’s sin? What do you tell your friend?

Read in Class John 12:1-8 and Acts 5:1-11. Discuss the common thread of these passages.

Study: Judas pretended to be concerned about the poor while Ananias and Sapphira pretended to be generous, but what sin lied in all their hearts? How did this sin lead to their fate?

Apply: How can we make sure we do not suffer the same fate as Judas, Ananias and Sapphira?

Share: Your friend asks, which was worse? Ananias and Sapphira keeping the money or lying about giving the entire amount? What do you tell your friend?

Read in Class: 1 Corinthians 10:13. Discuss the main idea of this passage.

Study: What promise is given here, and why is this so important to understand in the context of covetousness?

Apply: How then, in God’s power, can we be protected against this dangerously deceptive sin?

  1. Make a decision to serve and depend on God and to be a part of His family. “Choose you this day whom ye will serve; … but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD” (Josh. 24:15).
  2. Be daily in prayer and include Matthew 6:13, “Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever.” When feeling covetous of something that you know you should not have, pray over it, claiming promises in the Bible for victory, such as 1 Corinthians 10:13.
  3. Be regular in Bible study. “Your word I have hidden in my heart, that I might not sin against You” (Ps. 119:11, NKJV).

Share: What, if any, have been the consequences in your own life from covetousness? What lessons have you learned? What might you still need to learn from them?

2: Death in a Sinful World-Sabbath School Lesson Teaching Plan

Prepared by William Earnhardt, for Sabbath School class Sabbath, October 8, 2022.

Main Theme: Adam’s fall made us all sinful. Jesus’ perfect life and death brought salvation to all.

Read in Class: Romans 5:12, Romans 5:19 and Romans 6:23. Discuss the common thread of these passages.

Study: What are the consequences of sin? How did Jesus solve the sin problem?

Apply: What have we personally learned about the consequences of sin from our own sinful acts?

Share: Your friend says it is not fair that we were born into a sinful world by no choice of our own. How do you answer your friend? How did Jesus make it fair? How did Jesus undo all the damage Adam caused? See We are Saved by His Life.

Read in Class: Genesis 3:1-7. Discuss the main idea of this passage.

Study: In what ways was “You will not surely die” a lie?

Apply: the serpent had absolutely now power other than the power of persuasion. How can we defend ourselves against these lies and persuasions when we are tempted?

Share: Your friend says that the Bible contradicts the norms of society in so many ways, its hard to believe that the Bible is even relevant in today’s society. What are some ways the Bible contradicts our current society and how do we know we can trust the Bible to be right?

Read in Class: Genesis 3:8-15. Discuss the main idea of this passage.

Study: What are the consequences of sin found in this passage? What was God’s solution? Where do we find a Savior in this passage?

Apply: What can we learn from the consequences of our sins and the results of our actions? Why do some not seem to receive consequences for their sins?

Share: Your friend states that if people do horrible things and God just forgives them then no justice is served. It doesn’t seem fair for them to get away with these horrible sins. What do you tell your friend? See Forgiveness is not Saying it is Okay.

Read in Class: Genesis 3:16-21. Discuss the main idea of this passage.

Study: What hope do we find in this passage for all of us?

Apply: What did the animal skins do for Adam and Eve that gave them hope and encouragement in their lives? 

Share: Can you think of someone who needs to hear about God’s plan of salvation? Can you share it with them this week?

03: The Roots of Restlessness- Sabbath School Teaching Plan

Prepared by William Earnhardt for Sabbath School class on July 17, 2021.

Main theme for this week’s lesson: It is the love of self that causes us to be restless.

Read Together Matthew 10:34-39. Define the main theme is this passage.

Study: Why did Jesus bring a sword instead of peace?

Apply: How do we take up our cross? Is Jesus inviting us to come and die with Him?

Share: Your daughter tells you she has been studying about World War 2, and about Chamberlain wanting peace at any cost. Is that an attitude we should have as Christians? Why or why not? How does Matthew 10:34-39 help you answer that question?

Read together Luke 12:13-21. Define the main point of this passage.

Study: Is planning for the future wrong? What was the man in the story doing that showed his selfishness?

Apply: What are some guidelines that may help us to give generously and yet responsibly?

Share: Your coworker tells you his older brother cheated him out of his father’s will and took everything from the estate. How do you counsel your coworker according to Luke 12:31-21?

Read Together Philippians 2:5-8. Define the main idea of this passage.

Study: How does the love of self cause restlessness? See The Love of Self Causes Unrest.

Apply: What are some practical ways we can have Jesus’ selfless attitude at work, school and in the home?

Share: A fellow board member complains that when she mentions an idea no one seems to listen, but later when another board member says the exact same thing everyone thinks its a great idea. You have seen this so you know she is right. What do you tell her? How would Philippians 2:5-8 guide you in what you might say?

Read Together Luke 22:14-30. Discuss the main idea of this passage.

Study: Who did the disciples forget about when they were talking about who was the greatest?

Apply: what are some practical ways you can be a servant during the week this week?

Share: What ideas from this week’s study and discussion are you eager to share with others this week?

But don’t just listen to God’s word. You must do what it says. Otherwise, you are only fooling yourselves. James 1:22 NLT

Protecting Our Rights

I am writing today from the beautiful Tampa Bay area.

I am writing today from the beautiful Tampa Bay area.

We live in an age where everybody is worried about protecting their rights. There is the right to defend ourselves, the right to privacy, and so on.  This is nothing new. God provided Esther “for such a time as this” when God’s people needed someone to defend them. The NSA of the day was following Daniel around, and found him praying in an open window. Apparently he was not so concerned about his privacy. He had nothing to hide. Even though the NSA of the day found Daniel, right there in the open, God still protected him. We could go on and on about the rights we think we deserve, but if you could only retain one right what would it be? When Jesus became a man He had His rights violated too, and you may be surprised at the only right He refused to relinquish.

“And he said unto Jesus, Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom.  And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee To day[, ]shalt thou be with me in paradise.” Luke 23:42-43

Behold the matchless love Jesus has for sinful man! He comes to our earth King of Kings and Lord of Lords the Creator and Ruler of the universe. Satan wants to destroy Jesus. What Satan did to the Son of God here on Earth is exactly what he would have done to Him in heaven if he had been able. What love Jesus has for us when He comes down to this Earth and tells Satan, “Okay, I will let you take my crown away and give Me a crown of thorns, you may strip me of my royal robes and let me hang on a cruel cross. You can take away My scepter and mock me and slap Me in the face. You may mock My claim to be king of the Jews, and at last you can crucify Me and take away my life, and yes I will give up my omnipresence eternally. But the one right that I will never ever let go, is My right to forgive sinners!”

Out of all the rights and privileges of being the King of this universe, the only right Jesus did not give up on the cross was His right to forgive your sins! When we fail and feel hopeless, let us keep this in mind. Jesus never gives up on us, so we must never give up either. He died for us not when we were at our best, but when we were at our worst.

“For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.   Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.”  Hebrews 4:15-16

When we have fallen, and Satan attempts to make us feel beyond the reach of grace, remember the only right Jesus clung to on the cross was the right to forgive sin. Let us remember too, when others are standing in the need of mercy, and we feel they have violated our rights, and we are tempted to defend ourselves against them, that we already have a High priest who is defending and protecting us. Let’s also exercise the one right which was never taken away from Jesus, and can never be taken away from us; the right to forgive.

You may study this week’s Sabbath School lesson here.