Wednesday, April 27, 2016

The Seen and the Unseen War

INSIGHT #5 APRIL 30, 2016
Second Quarter 2016 Adult Sabbath School Lessons
The Seen and the Unseen War
April 30, 2016

This week's lesson underscores the reality of the Controversy between Christ and Satan, a warfare that began in Heaven. (Revelation 12)  The entire controversy, summarized, has to do with the character, purposes, goals, and most importantly, the underlying foundation of the Kingdom of God.  The Kingdom of God is based on God's character of Love, a love that is sacrificial, serving, merciful, and Holy.  Satan brought the charge in Heaven and the Garden of Eden that God is not love, but instead autocratic, selfish, and restrictive.  He claimed that, in effect, sin will not hurt anyone, and in fact, elevate man to "godhood" knowing good and evil.  Satan of course knows what the Bible presents as to the fate of those who follow such a philosophy, and spiritual warfare is being battled, beginning in Heaven, over whom should rule the universe.  Satan also knows that He needs access to the Tree of Life to have immortality, as He knows as the Bible states, "the wages of sin is death", thus declaring His fate as well as all those who refuse the "antidote" for the poison of sin, namely, the Gospel of Christ Our Righteousness, both for mercy and the transforming power of Love to reclaim us from the varied effects, and results of sin, which at its essence is selfishness instead of Love. 
The lesson brings out that the principle of Love has as a part of it an aggressiveness in the warfare, and takes the Kingdom by "violence."  The events in the warfare are unseen, as well as seen, as the spiritual battle for each human beings' mind, heart, and loyalty is continually going on.  There is always a harassing demon around us, probably more than one, and our need for vigilance and dependence upon Christ is an ongoing reality.  We cannot understand all aspects of the spiritual realities, but we have ample evidence in the Word of God and the experiences of life to know the character of God and His love.  The power of love is forcefully pushing back the powers of darkness, and will be victorious against all of Satan's weapons and strategies.  Satan of course tries to steal the gift that God has purchased for all of us in the legal justification of humanity, or the redemption obtained in the life, death, and resurrection of Christ.  He attempts to steal this gift by offering something better, but which instead places us in bondage, and slavery, to Him, to sin, and to fear, anxiety, guilt, condemnation, and hopelessness.  The Bible is clear that Satan will be defeated, and the pages of the Bible reveal, as well, HOW this defeat will occur.  "Only by love is love awakened."  God commended His love to us, in that while the world was surrendered to sin, Christ died for us.  God's plan is to win our allegiance by revelations of Love, and we "take the Kingdom" by assisting God in revealing agape love to lost sinners ourselves.  God's love includes rebuke and chastening, thus showing that God, in love, has to forcefully convict us of the dangers of sin, and what He does is for our good, to work a peaceable fruit of righteousness in those who will open their hearts to God's love.
I believe that it is vitally important to remember that God's goal is greater than to merely "save" us.  Certainly He came to seek and to save the lost, as He desires that what He has done for every human being is received by faith in Him as the Savior of the World.  But Isaiah 43:7 tells us God's initial, and continual goal, which the Plan of Salvation always entails in its entirely.  We were created for His glory, meaning, we were created to reveal in our own lives the character or love of God.  All that God does, in his personal relationship with all believers, is to bring them ever further in their spiritual walk to fully reveal His love in their own lives.  His discipline, His blessings, His conviction, His trials, His tests of faith, are all intended to bring us to Christlikeness.  Revelation 18:1 tells us that eventually, God's church will be triumphant, and the whole earth will be lightened with His glory, or His character revealed through us. 
The Bible of course reveals the final victory of Christ, and we can know, now, what will be the result to Satan of His lies and warfare.  Hebrews 2:14-15 tells us that Christ came to destroy the works of Satan, and to free us from the bondage of the "fear of death."  As perfect love casts out fear, we find peace, freedom from condemnation, and the transforming power of love to make us a "new creature"  II Cor. 5:17.  Revelation 12:12 tells us that we "overcome" by the blood of the Lamb, the word of our testimony, and we "love not our lives", but instead, live for Christ, for His love has won our hearts and loyalty 
We grasp the truth that Christ is the Savior of all men, especially those that believe.  I Timothy 4:10.  The entire Great Controversy will be over when we have learned the truth that God is love.  For all that Satan and his forces attempt, there is no defense, ultimately, against the truth of God's love, and how it was and is demonstrated on earth.  When we grasp that in spite of our sins, Christ has accomplished and offered to each human being, and given to every human being, through a knowledge of Him, a universal salvation for mankind as the Head of Humanity and the Second Adam, our hearts respond with a heart felt appreciation for the Cross of Calvary.
In my own life, God has worked progressively to win my heart, to subdue pride, selfishness, independence, enmity, and rebellion, and to bring me the peace of a full surrender to Christ.  We all have growing to do, but Christ promises to be the "finisher of our faith", to "write His laws in our hearts", to place love in our hearts through the Holy Spirit, and to bring us off more than conquerors.  We will be given, in heaven, the opportunity to, daily, receive new glimpses of the Heart of God.  It is a truth that makes this warfare worth enduring.  May God bless you all. 

~Pastor Thomas Cusack

Monday, April 18, 2016

"Get Up and Walk" Faith and Healing

Second Quarter 2016 Adult Sabbath School Lessons
"Get Up and Walk"  Faith and Healing
April 23, 2016



            The author of this lesson brings up a profound thought when he states "If God were to make a list of what He most dreads, it would certainly deal with the loss of either our family's or our own eternal life."

            Another way of approaching the overwhelming reality of God's burden, but from the perspective of when the redeemed are on the blissful shore, is captured in a timely poem by Gabriele Taddei.


In time eternal they will ask,
Unknowing of the countless saved
Walking with Him by that river
About those marks so deep and grave


Lovingly the Savior tells them
Agape love for all mankind
And as they wonder in amazement
From their gaze a tear He hides


The call of death He chose to answer
Yes if only just for one
Yet now He looks with greatest pleasure
A countless host adore the Son


We may forget our closest loved ones
In eternal timeless joy
Love scars He bears, His mind reflective
Bring memories of this girl that boy


A look to us brings satisfaction
Precious burden carried home
His labor reaped, His grief rewarded
The Man who trod the press alone


Yet now He waits with earnest longing
Every moment of each day
For one more son, for one more daughter
One less tear to hide away


Restored by grace into His image
To all the world constrained proclaim
What wondrous love is this presented
For Him the woe, for us the gain


You may doubt the gifts been given
Purchased by the life so dear
Then look beyond the starry heaven
For the source of every tear


All love, all feelings, all compassion
Find their source in His own heart
The pain we all are ever feeling
Have there been carried from the start


            There is no truth to a perspective of God being the 'Unmoved Mover.'  He is touched with the feeling of our infirmities. (Heb 4:13)  All healing—or lack of relief of symptoms both physical and emotional—is within our omnipotent God's purview for our eternal benefit.


Sunday—Touching the Untouchable

            How do we relate to those who are physically unstable? Doctors place them on life-support if warranted.  When one has leprosy it is an entirely different story. The doctors were obliged to pronounce a curse on him and warn him or her to flee from the haunts of men. (MH 68) 

            Here is elder Jones commenting on the word and cleansing.

            "Jesus says to every one of us, "Now ye are clean through the word which I have spoken unto you." It is through the word that this cleansing is wrought. The Lord does not propose to cleanse you in any way apart from his word, but through the word which he has spoken. There, and there alone, are you to look for the cleansing power, receiving it as it is in truth the word of God which effectually worketh in you, and accomplishes that which he pleases. He does not propose to make you pure except by the power and indwelling of his pure words.

            A leper said to Jesus, "Lord, if thou wilt, thou canst make me clean." And Jesus answered him, "I will; be thou clean. And immediately his leprosy was cleansed." Are you mourning under the leprosy of sin? Have you said, or will you now say, "Lord, if thou wilt, thou canst make me clean"? The answer is now to you, "I will; be thou clean." And "immediately" you are cleansed as certainly as was that other leper. Believe the word, and praise the Lord for its cleansing power. Do not believe for that leper away back there; believe it for yourself here, now, immediately. For the word is to you now, "Be thou clean." Accept it as did those of old, and immediately it worketh effectually in you the good pleasure of the Father.

            Let all who have named the name of Christ receive his word to-day as it is in truth the word of God, depending upon that word to do what the word says. Then as Christ loved the church, and gave himself for it, "that he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, that he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish," even so it will be now to the glory of God."

A. T. J. {October 27, 1896 ATJ, ARSH 685.8} Adventist Review and Sabbath Herald


Monday —The Roman and the Messiah

Here is a lesson that Dr. Waggoner shares about limiting Jesus' ability to heal:

"The Comfort of God" The Present Truth 13, 37.

E. J. Waggoner

True it is, our Lord is not here personally present, as He was when upon the earth; but He has not left us orphans; His Holy Spirit, the blessed Paraclete, dwells in every soul that desires the life presence of God. In the development of faith and character, it is better, it is expedient, that Christ should not be here in person.

When He was here, men limited His power to His bodily presence. "Lord, if  thou hadst been here, my brother had not died," was the limit of faith. It was a Roman centurion who saw the great truth which God's people could learn only by Christ's absence. "Lord, I am not worthy that Thou shouldest come under my roof, but speak the word only and my servant shall be healed. " {September 16, 1897 EJW, PTUK 583.2}  The Present Truth Articles

Conclusion: The Roman had more faith than Martha who depended on Jesus' visible presence.  Who do you identify more with?

Alonzo Trevier Jones adds his voice to what this Word accomplishes.

           FAITH is the depending upon the word of God only, and expecting that word only, to do what the word says.

          Justification by faith, then, is justification by depending upon the word of God only, and expecting that word only, to accomplish it.

          Justification by faith is righteousness by faith; for justification is the being declared righteous.

Faith comes by the word of God. Justification by faith, then, is justification that comes by the word of God. Righteousness by faith is righteousness that comes by the word of God.
The word of God is self-fulfilling in creating all things, "he spake, and it was." And when he was on earth, he stilled the raging sea, cleansed the lepers, healed the sick, raised the dead, and forgave sins, all by his word: there, too, "he spake, and it was."

{January 17, 1899 ATJ, ARSH 40.2} Adventist Review and Sabbath Herald


Tuesday —Demons and Pigs.

            Beyond wondering why the demons would request occupying the pigs when ordered by Jesus to leave the precious human hosts, E.J. Waggoner firstly addresses the event in light of religious liberty—the religious liberty to follow the city dwellers order to Jesus and his disciples to "depart out of their coasts". 

            "The gospel knows nothing of force. Christ never forced him-self upon anybody. When the Gadarenes besought him to depart out of their coasts, he went immediately. Why? Was it because he was not as intensely interested in them as in the inhabitants of Galilee? Not at all; but because he recognized their right to reject him and his teachings if they chose. When he sent out his disciples, he gave them instruction to the same effect. If any should refuse to receive them, they were to leave them, and allow the day of Judgment to settle with them for their willful rejection of the gospel. We repeat, The gospel knows nothing of force; its cry is, "Whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely." The privilege of every man to freely accept the provisions of God's grace, implies the equal privilege of every man to reject them. Religion that is not voluntary is of no value". {July 1888 EJW, AMS 50.3} 

            In another place Dr Waggoner has this encouraging counsel for the sinner whose words Jesus rightly interprets.  Do you feel like Peter when he voiced almost the same words as those of the Gadarenes "Depart from me"?

            "These words were addressed by Simon Peter to the Lord on one occasion when the Saviour had manifested His Divinity by causing a miraculous drought (catch) of fishes. See Luke v. 1-8. Peter said, when he saw the miracle, "Depart from me, for I am a sinful man, O Lord." It was the expression of the natural feeling of the human heart, when made by the presence of God to realise its sinfulness. It is the feeling in the hearts of many to-day who are touched by the Spirit of God, and convicted of sin, and know not what to say. {June 21, 1894 EJW, PTUK 385.7} 

            But the Saviour did not depart from Peter, and in this there is encouragement for all sinners who feel their unworthiness in the sight of God. The fact that Peter realised that he was a sinful man, so far from being a reason for Christ's leaving him, was the very reason why Christ could not leave him. He had come all the way from heaven to earth, at the sacrifice of all that He had, to be with sinners and to take them by the hand and lift them out of their fallen state. And therefore He could not then, and He cannot now, leave a man because he realises that he is a sinner. When we feel and acknowledge our unworthiness in His sight, so far from doing anything to drive Him from us, we are presenting to Him His own all-powerful reason for not leaving us to ourselves. {June 21, 1894 EJW, PTUK 385.8} The Present Truth Articles 

            Praise God for deliverance from the demons and the doubt of our sinful hearts.


Wednesday —"Get Up and Walk."

                        When Jesus saw their faith….

                        Elder Waggoner has an entire booklet on the forgiveness of sin titled "The Power of Forgiveness". Here is a quote:

            "When Jesus, illustrating the forgiveness of sin, said to the man, "Arise, take up thy bed, and go unto thine house," the man arose obedient to his voice. The power that was in the words of Jesus, raised him up, and made him well. That power remained in him, and it was in the strength that was given him on removing the palsy that he walked in all the time to come, provided, of course, that he kept the faith. This is illustrated by the Psalmist, when he says: "I waited patiently for the Lord; and he inclined unto me, and heard my cry. He brought me up also out of an horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and established my goings." Ps. 40:1, 2. {1894 EJW, POFO 3.1} 

            "There is life in the words of God. Jesus said, "The words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life." John 6:63. The word received in faith brings the Spirit and the life of God to the soul. So when the penitent soul hears the words, "Son, be of good cheer, thy sins be forgiven thee," and receives those words as for living words of the living God, he is a different man, because a new life has begun in him. It is the power of God's forgiveness, and that alone, that keeps him from sin. If he continues in sin after receiving pardon, it is because he has not grasped the fullness of the blessing that was given him in the forgiveness of his sins." {1894 EJW, POFO 3.2}  The Power of Forgiveness

            Elder Waggoner comments in another place on the phrase 'be of good cheer' and offers this encouragement for the difficulty that you and I are are going through.

            "Be of good cheer; rise, He calleth thee." That is reason enough to be of good cheer. Everybody on earth ought to rejoice, because God has called all. "Be of good cheer;" when? Now, no matter what your condition or circumstances. "In the world ye shall have tribulation; but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world." In the midst of tribulation, our joy may be full, from the mere knowledge that we are the chosen of God. "He loves me, and has chosen me," sings the heart of the maid, as she thinks of the lover, who to her is best of all. Even so our hearts should sing for joy, as we remember that "He loved me, and gave Himself for me." He has given the highest possible proof of His love to us and all mankind. {November 29, 1900 EJW, PTUK 755.5} The Present Truth Articles 


Thursday — Let the Dead Bury the Dead and Conclusion

            Concluding the link between faith and healing Elder Jones says.

            "This is faith, genuine faith. It finds in the word of God itself all sufficiency to accomplish all that the word expresses. And over and over again, in fact in all the cases recorded in the New Testament, it was believing the word spoken and thus receiving the power of that word to accomplish of itself the thing that was spoken—it was this faith that healed the sick, restored the palsied, made the impotent to talk, and forgave the sinner. This is believing God. This is faith." {May 31, 1894 ATJ, AMS 170.16} 

~Richard Kearns


Wednesday, April 13, 2016

"The Sermon on the Mount"

INSIGHT #3 APRIL 16, 2016
Second Quarter 2016 Adult Sabbath School Lessons
"The Sermon on the Mount"
April 16, 2016

The Jewish church of Christ's day was in some respects like churches today: formal on the outside, hollow on the inside.

"The rabbis counted their righteousness a passport to heaven; but Jesus declared it to be insufficient and unworthy. External ceremonies and a theoretical knowledge of truth constituted Pharisaical righteousness. The rabbis claimed to be holy through their own efforts in keeping the law; but their works had divorced righteousness from religion. While they were punctilious in ritual observances, their lives were immoral and debased. Their so-called righteousness could never enter the kingdom of heaven" DA 309

People had come to assume that spiritual leaders were those who wore important-looking clothes, attended church services regularly, kept themselves away from defiling sinners, judged others to be worse than themselves, and were scrupulous about observing rituals.

But when Jesus came along, something different drew them to Him.

"Multitudes who were not interested in the harangues of the rabbis were attracted by His teaching. They could understand His words, and their hearts were warmed and comforted. He spoke of God, not as an avenging judge, but as a tender father, and He revealed the image of God as mirrored in Himself. His words were like balm to the wounded spirit. Both by His words and by His works of mercy He was breaking the oppressive power of the old traditions and man-made commandments, and presenting the love of God in its exhaustless fullness" DA 204.

In response to Jesus' famous Sermon on the Mount, "The people were astonished at His teaching" Matthew 7:29.

What was it that attracted people to Jesus? Was it His money? His lovely home? His fashionable clothes? Was it His position? His good looks? Did He move in the right circles? These are all things the unconverted heart seeks after. But Jesus, though infinite in wealth, power, and position, had set these things aside to come to earth "as a root out of dry ground." He  had "no form or comeliness" and when we saw Him there was "no beauty that we should desire Him" (Isaiah 53, excerpts).

So why were people drawn to Jesus? Why did thousands gather on the grassy mountainside overlooking the Sea of Galilee that day to hear Jesus unfold the true principles of His law? Because of His love! They could see it. They could feel it.

He revealed the truth that the law reaches beyond mere externals to the deepest motives: Anger cloaks murder. Adultery hides in lustful desire. Self-aggrandizement motivates apparent good deeds. Worry for temporal needs (food, shelter, clothing) masks a lack of trust. An unforgiving spirit divides brothers and friends.

Have you ever considered which of Jesus' sayings that day was the hardest to bear? I think it might have been this:

"I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.

"For if you love those who love you, what reward have you? . . . And if you greet your brethren only, what do you do more than others?" (Matthew 5:44-47, excerpts).

In this passage Jesus revealed the universal nature of His love for man. He didn't come to help only the good people, the clean people, or the respectable people. He came to bring life, hope, and blessing to all men. More than that, He made it possible for His image of love to be restored in man.

"The greatest deception of the human mind in Christ's day was that a mere assent to the truth constitutes righteousness. In all human experience a theoretical knowledge of the truth has been proved to be insufficient for the saving of the soul. It does not bring forth the fruits of righteousness. A jealous regard for what is termed theological truth often accompanies a hatred of genuine truth as made manifest in life." DA 309

The truth is, it isn't natural to love or bless our enemies. It's always easier to the natural heart to discuss the gospel than to live it. I experienced this heart-head struggle myself last week when a church member brought a homeless young woman to prayer meeting. Her hair was matted, her clothes torn and stained. A ring dangled from her nose. She smelled of filth and marijuana. During the meeting I had conflicting thoughts in mind. Should I offer to take her home? Might someone else provide for her needs? Was she armed? But superseding these questions was the realization that this girl could be my daughter. I thought of how much Jesus loved her and how He had left heaven to save her.

So after the service ended I invited her to come home with me and stay the night. She accepted the invitation. We loaded her 60 lb. backpack and beautiful collie dog into my van and headed home. That evening after she showered and while I washed all her clothes and sleeping bag, we sat in the living room by the fire and she told her story. It was a sad story indeed, and my heart yearned for her to know Jesus. She explained the reason she smokes pot is to fill an emotional need. I told her that the only One who can really satisfy the longing in her heart is Jesus. I told her how much He loves her. The next morning at breakfast she said she wanted to be dropped off at the park to meet a friend. She has been homeless for three years now and the lifestyle is a familiar one and the friendships she has made in this circle run deep.

How many millions of people are out there like this young lady, searching for love, for hope, for freedom? Truly the gospel needs to do a deeper work in our hearts. Am I willing to be inconvenienced for Christ to win a soul for Him (or at least try)? When I think of what Jesus did in leaving heaven to come to this world, He definitely went out of His comfort zone not because He enjoyed living in this world of sin -- it was torture to Him -- but because of love for those whom He came to save -- Pharisees, sinners, the wealthy and the poor in spirit.

~Patti Guthrie

Friday, April 08, 2016

"The Ministry Begins"

INSIGHT #2 APRIL 9, 2016
Second Quarter 2016 Adult Sabbath School Lessons
"The  Ministry Begins"
April 9, 2016

The early ministry experiences of Jesus and John the Baptist contain valuable lessons for us today. 

"Repent." John's message was singular. In an era when discussion about religious matters was confined to the spiritual elite and religiosity was all about form and making a good impression, John's call to repentance startled the masses. Multitudes were drawn to the barren wasteland of the Jordan valley to hear him preach. Clothed in camel's hair garments secured by a leather belt, John must have been a sight to behold. What a contrast was his appearance to that of the richly-robed Pharisees and Sadducees. John was not about dressing for worldly success, nor was his message aimed at mere outward appearance or political correctness. His words penetrated to the heart: "Brood of vipers," "Do not say to yourselves, We have Abraham as our father," "The ax is laid to the root of the tree," "Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand." (Matthew 3:1-12, excerpted)

To God's last day remnant church, a similar message of rebuke has been given: "Because you say, 'I am rich, ... and have need of nothing," "and know not that you are wretched, miserable, poor, blind, and naked," "I counsel you to buy . . . white garments, that you may be clothed, that the shame of your nakedness not appear," "Be zealous therefore and repent." (Revelation 3:14-22, excerpted)

The call to repentance is a plea to "turn your eyes upon Jesus, and look full in His wonderful face" so that "the things of earth" will "grow strangely dim in the light of His glory and grace." As a church, we cannot proclaim the Lord's soon (second) advent with our backs to Jesus. To repent is to turn to Him and away from the world. 

The temptations. Shortly after Jesus' baptism he repaired to the wilderness to commune with His Father. His first 30 years of life were marked with humble, faithful toil. No doubt Jesus experienced temptations throughout that time, but nothing like what He faced once beginning His ministry. Have you noticed sometimes how Satan's attacks increase when we set about to follow God's call to a new level of ministry? 

But Jesus' temptations were more than mere trials. In coming to this world as our Savior, it behooved Him to be made in all things "like His brethren, that He might be a merciful and faithful High Priest in things pertaining to God, . . . For in that He Himself has suffered, being tempted, He is able to aid those who are tempted" (Hebrews 2:17, 18). Christ came to experience life as we do. His was not the life of an adventure outdoorsman, a successful businessman, or a revered leader. No, His mission to save us took Him to our collective lowest point, and that's what He experienced in the wilderness. It's easy to be a Christian when everything is smooth sailing. It's another thing altogether when our faith is tested and tried, when all others forsake us, and when at our weakest point someone beguiles us with a near-irresistable invitation to reward ourselves with just a little self-indulgence. 

That's why Jesus' victory over Satan in the wilderness is everything to us. "We do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin" (Hebrews 4:15). In other words, Jesus can sympathize with us in our weakness, and not only sympathize, but bring us safely through temptation. He resisted as us. Our greatest struggle may be to believe this good news! 

Have you ever wanted something very badly only to see a close friend succeed instead of you? We all rejoice when we win. But what about when we lose? John's disciples experienced this disappointment. They wanted John to succeed. They couldn't understand why John would allow himself to fade to the background while Jesus was gaining followers on every hand. John explained, "He must increase, but I must decrease" (John 3:30). In this one short sentence, John articulated the essence of the gospel: More of Jesus. Less of me. When desire for Jesus' glory is paramount, we will not feel hurt by the slights of others. We will be neither disappointed by apparent failure nor elated by applause. The success of Christ in His mission to save souls will be our heart's desire, and that is something John understood.

"From that time Jesus began to preach and to say, 'Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand' " (Matthew 4:17) The call to the fishermen is Jesus' call to us, to leave our selfish pursuits and, forsaking all others, to follow Him. We live in an era where people are reluctant to make absolute commitments. Marriages fail. Friends separate. We make contingency plans, just in case. But Jesus' call to us is all-encompassing. There is no middle ground. We can't strike a deal with God. "OK, after the Super Bowl then I'll commit to spending more time with you," or "If I can get my friend to come, then I'll come, too", or whatever the condition may be. Jesus calls for complete, full-hearted surrender of ourselves, our plans, to Him. In exchange for our polluted selves, He gives us His righteousness. He installs a new "hard drive" in our minds that provides a new spring of action: "For the love of Christ compels us, because we judge thus: that if One died for all, then all died; and He died for all." Jesus calls for fishermen today who no longer desire to live for themselves, "but for Him who died for them and rose again" (2 Corinthians 5:17, 18).

~Patti GuthrieRaul Diaz