R2551-285 Bible Study: Review

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REVIEW OF 1899.—DEC. 31.


Golden Text.—”Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits.”—Psa. 103:2.

The end of one year and the beginning of another is a most favorable occasion for circumspection and retrospection.

We trust that as each reader reviews the year just closing he will be able to repeat our Golden Text appreciatively,—with the spirit and with the understanding also. One of the least expensive offerings we can present to the Lord our God, and yet one which he will appreciate very highly, is thanksgiving—for mercies past and present. The ungrateful are disdained among men, and we may well suppose are far from pleasing in the sight of the Almighty. While every creature throughout the world might find some cause for thankfulness and gratitude and praise, how much more should we who have received so abundantly of the riches of divine

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grace in the knowledge of his truth—the plan of the ages. We may well apply to ourselves on this occasion the words of our dear Redeemer, “Blessed are your eyes, for they see, and your ears, for they hear; for verily I say unto you, that many prophets and many righteous persons have desired to see the things which ye see and have not seen them, and to hear the things which ye hear, and have not heard them.”

We said that thanksgivings were cheap offerings; but whoever presents to the Lord real thanksgiving with lips of praise will follow his lip service with something more substantial; and this is intimated in our Golden Text by the words, “O my soul!”—the appeal is not merely to the lips, but to the entire being. And so we find it with ourselves and others today: whoever is truly thankful to the Lord and offers him praise, remembering his benefits, will seek to render substantial thanks also in deeds that will be acceptable and pleasing to the Lord.

While prayers, adorations and praises are the most direct offerings of “incense” to the Lord, nevertheless, he has so arranged matters that we cannot offer these sincerely and acceptably except as we have his spirit: and if we have his spirit, we will at the same time that we offer this incense on the Golden Altar be offering also upon the brazen altar in the “Court” good works—”doing good unto all men as we have opportunity, especially to the household of faith.”—Gal. 6:10.

The close of the year is an excellent time also for the making of new resolutions for the year to come, and on the present occasion there is an added force from the fact that the year before us will be the last one of the century. Let us, beloved brethren, make plenty of good resolves respecting what we shall be willing to be, to do, to suffer, in fellowship with our Lord; that we may by his grace make of it the best year thus far of our lives—the year of largest hopes, of largest endeavors, and by the Lord’s grace of largest successes in self-sacrifice, in overcoming the world and its spirit, in vanquishing self and the desires of the flesh, in resisting the Adversary, and in glorifying our Lord and blessing his people.


— December 15, 1899 —