These text files are prepared by Laurelbrook staff member James Brenneman for his personal use and for those who wish to see the Bible texts in the adult Sabbath School lesson in possibly a new light.
Memory Text: Luke 8:15 Contemporary English Version Those seeds that fell on good ground are the people who listen to the message and keep it in good and honest hearts. They last and produce a harvest.
Sunday – A Matter of Simple Honesty
Luke 16:10 New Living Translation If you are faithful in little things, you will be faithful in large ones. But if you are dishonest in little things, you won’t be honest with greater responsibilities.
Leviticus 27:30 New English Translation Any tithe of the land, from the grain of the land or from the fruit of the trees, belongs to the Lord; it is holy to the Lord.
Malachi 3:8 New English Translation Can a person rob God? You indeed are robbing me, but you say, ‘How are we robbing you?’ In tithes and contributions!
Monday – The Life of Faith
Genesis 22:1-12 New Century Version After these things God tested Abraham’s faith. God said to him, “Abraham!” And he answered, “Here I am.” 2 Then God said, “Take your only son, Isaac, the son you love, and go to the land of Moriah. Kill him there and offer him as a whole burnt offering on one of the mountains I will tell you about.” 3 Abraham got up early in the morning and saddled his donkey. He took Isaac and two servants with him. After he cut the wood for the sacrifice, they went to the place God had told them to go. 4 On the third day Abraham looked up and saw the place in the distance. 5 He said to his servants, “Stay here with the donkey. My son and I will go over there and worship, and then we will come back to you.” 6 Abraham took the wood for the sacrifice and gave it to his son to carry, but he himself took the knife and the fire. So he and his son went on together. 7 Isaac said to his father Abraham, “Father!” Abraham answered, “Yes, my son.” Isaac said, “We have the fire and the wood, but where is the lamb we will burn as a sacrifice?” 8 Abraham answered, “God will give us the lamb for the sacrifice, my son.” So Abraham and his son went on together 9 and came to the place God had told him about. Abraham built an altar there. He laid the wood on it and then tied up his son Isaac and laid him on the wood on the altar. 10 Then Abraham took his knife and was about to kill his son. 11 But the angel of the Lord called to him from heaven and said, “Abraham! Abraham!” Abraham answered, “Yes.”12 The angel said, “Don’t kill your son or hurt him in any way. Now I can see that you trust God and that you have not kept your son, your only son, from me.”
Hebrews 11:2 Easy-to-Read Version We must never stop looking to Jesus. He is the leader of our faith, and he is the one who makes our faith complete. He suffered death on a cross. But he accepted the shame of the cross as if it were nothing because of the joy he could see waiting for him. And now he is sitting at the right side of God’s throne.
Tuesday – A Statement of Faith
Luke 11:42 Common English Bible How terrible for you Pharisees! You give a tenth of your mint, rue, and garden herbs of all kinds, while neglecting justice and love for God. These you ought to have done without neglecting the others.
Genesis 28:14-22 Christian Standard Bible 14 Your offspring will be like the dust of the earth, and you will spread out toward the west, the east, the north, and the south. All the peoples on earth will be blessed through you and your offspring. 15 Look, I am with you and will watch over you wherever you go. I will bring you back to this land, for I will not leave you until I have done what I have promised you.” 16 When Jacob awoke from his sleep, he said, “Surely the Lord is in this place, and I did not know it.” 17 He was afraid and said, “What an awesome place this is! This is none other than the house of God. This is the gate of heaven.”18 Early in the morning Jacob took the stone that was near his head and set it up as a marker. He poured oil on top of it 19 and named the place Bethel, though previously the city was named Luz. 20 Then Jacob made a vow: “If God will be with me and watch over me during this journey I’m making, if he provides me with food to eat and clothing to wear, 21 and if I return safely to my father’s family, then the Lord will be my God. 22 This stone that I have set up as a marker will be God’s house, and I will give to you a tenth of all that you give me.”
Wednesday – Honest Tithe: Holy to the Lord
Leviticus 27:30 God’s Word Translation One-tenth of what comes from the land, whether grain or fruit, is holy and belongs to the Lord.
Hebrews 7:2-10 New Living Translation 2 Then Abraham took a tenth of all he had captured in battle and gave it to Melchizedek. The name Melchizedek means “king of justice,” and king of Salem means “king of peace.” 3 There is no record of his father or mother or any of his ancestors—no beginning or end to his life. He remains a priest forever, resembling the Son of God. 4 Consider then how great this Melchizedek was. Even Abraham, the great patriarch of Israel, recognized this by giving him a tenth of what he had taken in battle. 5 Now the law of Moses required that the priests, who are descendants of Levi, must collect a tithe from the rest of the people of Israel, who are also descendants of Abraham. 6 But Melchizedek, who was not a descendant of Levi, collected a tenth from Abraham. And Melchizedek placed a blessing upon Abraham, the one who had already received the promises of God. 7 And without question, the person who has the power to give a blessing is greater than the one who is blessed. 8 The priests who collect tithes are men who die, so Melchizedek is greater than they are, because we are told that he lives on. 9 In addition, we might even say that these Levites—the ones who collect the tithe—paid a tithe to Melchizedek when their ancestor Abraham paid a tithe to him. 10 For although Levi wasn’t born yet, the seed from which he came was in Abraham’s body when Melchizedek collected the tithe from him.
Thursday – Revival, Reformation, and Tithing
Nehemiah 9:2-3 Holman Christian Standard Bible 2 Those of Israelite descent separated themselves from all foreigners, and they stood and confessed their sins and the guilt of their fathers. 3 While they stood in their places, they read from the book of the law of the Lord their God for a fourth of the day and spent another fourth of the day in confession and worship of the Lord their God.
Nehemiah 13 New International Reader’s Version At that time the Book of Moses was read out loud. All the people heard it. It was written there that no Ammonite or Moabite could ever become a member of God’s community. 2 That’s because they hadn’t given the people of Israel food and water. Instead, they had hired Balaam to put a curse on them. But our God turned the curse into a blessing. 3 When that law was read, the people of Judah obeyed it. They sent out of Israel everyone who was from another nation. 4 Eliashib the priest had been put in charge of the storerooms in the house of our God. He had worked closely with Tobiah. 5 He had also provided a large room for Tobiah. It had been used to store the grain offerings. The incense and the objects for the temple had been put there. And a tenth of the grain, olive oil and fresh wine had been kept there. That’s what the Law required for the Levites. That’s also what it required for the musicians and the men who guarded the temple gates. The gifts for the priests had been kept there too. 6 But I wasn’t in Jerusalem while all of that was going on. I had returned to the Persian King Artaxerxes, the king of Babylon. I went to him in the 32nd year of his rule. Some time later I asked him to let me return to Jerusalem. 7 When I got back, I learned about the evil thing Eliashib had done. He had provided a room for Tobiah. It was in the courtyards of God’s house. 8 So I was very unhappy. I threw all of Tobiah’s things out of the room. 9 I gave orders to make the rooms pure and “clean” again. Then I put the supplies from God’s house back into them. That included the grain offerings and the incense. 10 I also learned that the shares the Levites were supposed to receive hadn’t been given to them. So all the Levites and musicians had to leave their regular temple duties. They had to go back and farm their own fields. 11 I gave a warning to the officials. I asked them, “Why aren’t you taking care of God’s house?” Then I brought the Levites and musicians together. I stationed them in their proper places. I put them back to work. 12 All the people of Judah brought a tenth of the grain, olive oil and fresh wine. They took it to the storerooms. 13 I put some men in charge of the storerooms. They were Shelemiah, Zadok and Pedaiah. Shelemiah was a priest. Zadok was a teacher of the law. And Pedaiah was a Levite. I made Hanan their assistant. He was the son of Zakkur. Zakkur was the son of Mattaniah. I knew that these men could be trusted. They were put in charge of handing out the supplies to the other Levites. 14 You are my God. Remember me because of what I’ve done. I’ve worked faithfully for your temple and its services. So please don’t forget the good things I’ve done. 15 In those days I saw some people of Judah stomping on grapes in winepresses. They were doing it on the Sabbath day. Other people were bringing in grain. They were loading it on donkeys. Still other people were loading up wine, grapes, figs and other kinds of things. They were bringing all of it into Jerusalem on the Sabbath day. So I warned them not to sell food on that day. 16 People from Tyre who lived in Jerusalem were bringing in fish. In fact, they were bringing in all kinds of goods. They were selling them in Jerusalem on the Sabbath day. The people of Judah were buying them. 17 I gave a warning to the nobles of Judah. I said, “Why are you doing such an evil thing? You are misusing the Sabbath day! 18 Your people of long ago did the very same things. That’s why our God has brought all this trouble on us. That’s why he’s making this city suffer so much. Now you are making him even angrier against Israel. You are misusing the Sabbath day.” 19 Evening shadows fell on the gates of Jerusalem before the Sabbath day started. So I ordered the gates to be shut. They had to remain closed until the Sabbath day was over. I stationed some of my own men at the gates. I told them not to let anything be brought in on the Sabbath day. 20 Once or twice some traders and sellers spent the night outside Jerusalem. They were hoping to sell all kinds of goods. 21 But I gave them a warning. I said, “Why are you spending the night by the wall? If you do this again, I’ll arrest you.” So from that time on they didn’t come on the Sabbath day anymore. 22 I commanded the Levites to make themselves pure. Then I told them to go and guard the gates. I wanted the Sabbath day to be kept holy. You are my God. Remember me because of the good things I’ve done. Be kind to me according to your great love. 23 In those days I also saw that some men of Judah had married women from Ashdod. Others had married women from Ammon or Moab. 24 Half of their children spoke the language of Ashdod. Or they spoke the language of one of the other nations. They didn’t even know how to speak the language of Judah. 25 So I gave them a warning. I cursed them. I beat up some of them. I pulled their hair out. I had them make a promise in God’s name. I said, “You must promise not to give your daughters to be married to their sons. You must promise not to let their daughters marry your sons. And you must not marry their daughters either. 26 That’s how Solomon, the king of Israel, sinned. He married women from other nations. There wasn’t a king like him anywhere. His God loved him. In fact, God made him king over the whole nation of Israel. But even he was led into sin by women from other lands. 27 Now I hear that you too are doing all of the same terrible and evil things. You aren’t being faithful to our God. You are marrying women from other lands.” 28 One of the sons of Joiada was the son-in-law of Sanballat the Horonite. Joiada, the son of Eliashib, was the high priest. I drove Joiada’s son away from me. 29 You are my God. Remember what those priests have done. They have brought shame to their own work. They have also brought shame to the covenant that God made with the priests and Levites long ago. 30 So I made the priests and Levites pure. I made them pure from every practice that had come from other countries and had made them impure. I gave them their duties. Each one had his own job to do. 31 I also made plans for gifts of wood to be brought at certain appointed times. And I made plans for the first share of the crops to be brought. You are my God. Please remember me with kindness.
Memory Text: 1 Corinthians 9:13-14 New English Translation 13 Don’t you know that those who serve in the temple eat food from the temple, and those who serve at the altar receive a part of the offerings? 14 In the same way the Lord commanded those who proclaim the gospel to receive their living by the gospel.
Sunday – Together We Fund the Mission
Malachi 3:10 New International Version 10 Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this,” says the Lord Almighty, “and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that there will not be room enough to store it.
Malachi 3:10 COMMENTARY BY ADAM CLARKE They had so withheld these that the priests had not food enough to support life, and the sacred service was interrupted.
Malachi 3:10 SDA BIBLE COMMENTARY All the tithes. Or, “the full tithes.” This implies that if the people paid tithe, they did not pay a full or honest tithe. Let us be sure that we do not make the same mistake as the people of Malachi’s day. The Giver of all has a right to expect us to render Him an honest tithe, and also willing gifts as we are able.
Ellen White, Testimonies for the Church, Vol. 3, p. 395 – “If all who profess the truth will come up to the claims of God in giving the tenth, which God says is His, the treasury will be abundantly supplied with means to carry forward the great work for the salvation of man.”
Revelation 14:6-7 Good News Translation 6 Then I saw another angel flying high in the air, with an eternal message of Good News to announce to the peoples of the earth, to every race, tribe, language, and nation. 7 He said in a loud voice, “Honor God and praise his greatness! For the time has come for him to judge all people. Worship him who made heaven, earth, sea, and the springs of water!”
Monday – The Blessings of God
1 Peter 3:8-9 Common English Bible 8 Finally, all of you be of one mind, sympathetic, lovers of your fellow believers, compassionate, and modest in your opinion of yourselves. 9 Don’t pay back evil for evil or insult for insult. Instead, give blessing in return. You were called to do this so that you might inherit a blessing.
1 Peter 3:9 SDA BIBLE COMMENTARY The greatest blessing that can come to a person is from being a blessing to others. God’s eternal kingdom will be populated with men and women who have made it a life habit to share their happiness. In a perfect universe the happiness of others is the only concern of every intelligent being.
Acts 20:35 New International Reader’s Version In everything I did, I showed you that we must work hard and help the weak. We must remember the words of the Lord Jesus. He said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’
Tuesday – Purpose of the Tithe
1 Corinthians 9:14 New Living Translation In the same way, the Lord ordered that those who preach the Good News should be supported by those who benefit from it.
1 Corinthians 9:14 COMMENTARY BY ALBERT BARNES They should be made comfortable, not rich. They should receive so much as to keep their minds from being harassed with cares, and their families from want; not so much as to lead them to forget their dependence on God, or on the people. Probably the true rule is, that they should be able to live as the mass of the people among whom they labour live; that they should be able to receive and entertain the poor, and be willing to do it; and so that the rich also may not despise them, or turn away from their dwelling.
2 Corinthians 11:7-10 Christian Standard Bible 7 Or did I commit a sin by humbling myself so that you might be exalted, because I preached the gospel of God to you free of charge? 8 I robbed other churches by taking pay from them to minister to you. 9 When I was present with you and in need, I did not burden anyone, since the brothers who came from Macedonia supplied my needs. I have kept myself, and will keep myself, from burdening you in any way. 10 As the truth of Christ is in me, this boasting of mine will not be stopped in the regions of Achaia.
Leviticus 27:30 Easy-to-Read Bible A tenth of all crops belongs to the Lord. This means the crops from fields and the fruit from trees—a tenth belongs to the Lord.
Wednesday – The Storehouse
1 Chronicles 26:20 Common English Bible Their fellow Levites were in charge of the treasuries of God’s temple and the treasuries of the dedicated gifts.
1 Chronicles 26:20 COMMENTARY BY JAMIESON, FAUSSET, AND BROWN The names of those who had charge of the treasure chambers at their respective wards are given, with a general description of the precious things committed to their trust. Those treasures were immense, consisting of the accumulated spoils of Israelitish victories, as well as of voluntary contributions made by David and the representatives of the people.
2 Chronicles 31:11-13 New English Translation 11 Hezekiah ordered that storerooms be prepared in the Lord’s temple. When this was done, 12 they brought in the contributions, tithes, and consecrated items that had been offered. Konaniah, a Levite, was in charge of all this, assisted by his brother Shimei. 13 Jehiel, Azaziah, Nahath, Asahel, Jerimoth, Jozabad, Eliel, Ismakiah, Mahath, and Benaiah worked under the supervision of Konaniah and his brother Shimei, as directed by King Hezekiah and Azariah, the supervisor of God’s temple.
Nehemiah 10:38 Holman Christian Standard Bible A priest of Aaronic descent must accompany the Levites when they collect the tenth, and the Levites must take a tenth of this offering to the storerooms of the treasury in the house of our God.
Thursday – Tithe and Salvation by Faith
Romans 3:19-24 Contemporary English Version 19 We know that everything in the Law was written for those who are under its power. The Law says these things to stop anyone from making excuses and to let God show that the whole world is guilty. 20 God doesn’t accept people simply because they obey the Law. No, indeed! All the Law does is to point out our sin. 21 Now we see how God does make us acceptable to him. The Law and the Prophets tell how we become acceptable, and it isn’t by obeying the Law of Moses. 22 God treats everyone alike. He accepts people only because they have faith in Jesus Christ. 23 All of us have sinned and fallen short of God’s glory. 24 But God treats us much better than we deserve, and because of Christ Jesus, he freely accepts us and sets us free from our sins.
Romans 3:23 SDA BIBLE COMMENTARY Paul is urging Jews and Gentiles alike to recognize the vital fact that all the evidence of experience and history clearly proves that fallen man, with his depraved nature, is wholly incapable of fulfilling the requirements of God’s law and of establishing his own righteousness. The only possible way to obtain righteousness is by faith in Jesus Christ.
Romans 4:1-5 New Life Version What about Abraham, our early father? What did he learn? 2 If Abraham was made right with God by what he did, he would have had something to be proud of. But he could not be proud before God. 3 The Holy Writings say, “Abraham put his trust in God and that made him right with God.” 4 If a man works, his pay is not a gift. It is something he has earned. 5 If a man has not worked to be saved, but has put his trust in God Who saves men from the punishment of their sins, that man is made right with God because of his trust in God.
Romans 4:5 PEOPLE’S NEW TESTAMENT COMMENTARY But to him that worketh not. Does not trust his works for acceptance with God. But believeth, etc. Trusts in the mercy of him who justifies sinners who come to him penitent and believing. His faith, etc. It is made the ground of his acceptance with God. By faith he clings to Christ, the Savior.
Luke 21:1-4 Good News Translation Jesus looked around and saw rich people dropping their gifts in the Temple treasury, 2 and he also saw a very poor widow dropping in two little copper coins. 3 He said, “I tell you that this poor widow put in more than all the others. 4 For the others offered their gifts from what they had to spare of their riches; but she, poor as she is, gave all she had to live on.”