Saturday, October 6, 2012

The Great Controversy: The Foundation

An audio overview of the lesson by Raul Diaz.

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 Below is the Audio Script:

The Great Controversy: The Foundation
Memory Text: “ ‘And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her Seed; He shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise His heel’ ” (Gen. 3:15, NKJV).
What does the expression (proverb) “necessity is the mother of invention” mean?  When people really need to do something, they will figure out a way to do it.  The following sentence is example of this proverb:  “When the fan belt on Linda's car broke in the middle of the desert, Linda used her stockings as a replacement. Necessity is the mother of invention.”  Here, mother means driving force, reason or motivator. 

The lesson tries to make an analogy by stating that a driving force, reason or motivator is a foundation.  A foundation is the lowest load-bearing part of a building, typically below ground level; or a body or ground on which other parts rest or are overlaid.  This analogy does not work because clearly what motivates you to do something is not bearing anything.  So, the analogy to use the illustration of clean air as a motivator to find better fuel sources, where clean air is the foundation does not work. 

Now, when we are talking about belief system we also need to define what we are talking about.  It is possible that a belief system was created out of need.  For example, Buddhism was created out of a need of one man to explain aggression and violence.  The lesson seems to hint that Seventh day Adventists have a belief system, and that this belief system is explained in the 28 fundamental beliefs.  So, we should ask ourselves what motivated the Adventist belief system and what its foundation is.  Also, what need was there to create or what motivated the creation of this creed or doctrine we call the 28 fundamental beliefs; and what its foundation is.  We may not be able to answer those questions now.  But, I wonder what ever happened to “The Bible is our creed.”  While many may try to discount the 28 Fundamental beliefs as a creed, that is exactly what it is.  Because, all the points have been officially accepted the Corporate Body.  These 28 Fundamental Beliefs held by Adventists are a statement of our faith declaring and informing who we are and what we believe as a people.  But, to whom?  Virtually no non-adventists are going to buy this book.  So, the book of these Fundamental Beliefs was published so that members know what the organization officially believes. 
The lesson says that the foundation of the 28 fundamental beliefs is the great controversy between Christ and Satan.  So, most of the week’s study is spent explaining the great controversy.  If the great controversy is “foundational” to our beliefs, what is the issue of conflict between Christ and Satan? It is agape versus self-love.
The Bible focuses the dynamic of truth on the divine-love of God (1 John 4:8). “The love of Christ constraineth us” because “one died for all, then were all dead” (2 Cor. 5:14). In other words, if One hadn’t died for all, then all would be dead. So those who live simply cannot live for themselves “but unto Him which died for them” (vs. 15).
It is in the Word of God that we find what we need to endure this controversy.  Ellen White comments about this,
“The Bible is its own expositor. Scripture is to be compared with scripture. The student should learn to view the word as a whole, and to see the relation of its parts. He should gain a knowledge of its grand central theme, of God’s original purpose for the world, of the rise of the great controversy, and of the work of redemption. He should understand the nature of the two principles that are contend­ing for supremacy, and should learn to trace their working through the records of history and prophecy, to the great consummation. He should see how this controversy enters into every phase of human experience; how in every act of life he himself reveals the one or the other of the two antagonistic motives; and how, whether he will or not, he is even now deciding upon which side of the controversy he will be found.”—Ellen G. White, Education, p. 190.
The last few statements are crucial.  There is a war waging in our hearts and minds.  And every thought is either for God or the devil.  Therefore every action is also for God or the Devil.  There is nothing trivial or miscellaneous.  The smallest indiscretion can foster the greatest fall.  With every thought you choose which side you are in.  Thankfully, we have Christ on our side.  We can yield all to Him.  He in turn gives us His victory.