“As an educator no part of the Bible is of greater value than are its biographies. These biographies differ from all others in that they are absolutely true to life. It is impossible for any finite mind to interpret rightly, in all things, the workings of another. None but He who reads the heart, who discerns the secret springs of motive and action, can with absolute truth delineate character, or give a faithful picture of a human life. In God’s word alone is found such delineation.
“No truth does the Bible more clearly teach than that what we do is the result of what we are. To a great degree the experiences of life are the fruition of our own thoughts and deeds.”—Education, p. 146.
In every period of human history, individual men and women have given their fellowmen great examples of nobility of character. Circumstances and conditions in society naturally change with the development of time, but no society could advance mentally, morally, or spiritually without intelligent, courageous, and self-denying demonstrations of how principle should be followed.
The inspired biographies of the Scriptures are unique in that they are true. When certain crises have arisen in the history of God’s people, loyal and dependable individuals have faithfully displayed qualities of fidelity and devotion to the cause of God that have many times brought the people back to God.
“Had our good Bible been written by uninspired persons, it would have presented quite a different appearance and would have been a discouraging study to erring mortals, who are contending with natural frailties and the temptations of a wily foe. But as it is, we have a correct record of the religious experiences of marked characters in Bible history.”—Testimonies, vol. 4, p. 10.
The early centuries of God’s faithful people on this earth provide rich insights for our growth in grace and the knowledge of God. These various biographies are highly beneficial—and some of these are not expounded upon as frequently as others. For this reason, during the first quarter of this year, Sabbath school students around the world will have Biographical Blessings by focusing particularly on the experiences of Enoch, Job, Gideon, Hannah, Samson, and Samuel. We will seek to glean valuable lessons to strengthen our faith by observing God’s marvelous ways of operating among His children.
“We need just such lessons as the Bible gives us, for with the revelation of sin is recorded the retribution which follows. The sorrow and penitence of the guilty, and the wailing of the sin-sick soul, come to us from the past, telling us that man was then, as now, in need of the pardoning mercy of God. It teaches us that while He is a punisher of crime, He pities and forgives the repenting sinner.”—Ibid., p. 12.
The General Conference Sabbath School Department