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If I Were Told the Future - Lesson 30

Introduction to the Seven Seals

Picture 1 If I Were Told the Future Lesson 30
Introduction to the Seven Seals
Screen 1
Let’s talk to God before beginning this new section:
Lord,

Once again we thank You for giving us this great privilege of being able to search and understand the book of Revelation.

After studying the letters to the seven churches, we now wish to start on the subject of the seven seals.

Please guide us while we study this part of prophecy, so that we may grasp the message You want to give us through the seven seals. In Jesus Christ we pray.

Amen.
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Picture 2 If I Were Told the Future Lesson 30
Introduction to the Seven Seals
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Revelation 1:11 Comments
What you see, write in a book, and send it to the seven churches which are in Asia; to Ephesus, and to Smyrna, and to Pergamos, and to Thyatira, and to Sardis, and to Philadelphia, and to Laodicea. The previous lessons allowed us to study the letters to the seven churches, and their prophecies about the Church, from John’s time up to Jesus’ return.
Revelation 1:19
Write the things which you have seen, and the things which are, and the things which shall be hereafter.
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Picture 3 If I Were Told the Future Lesson 30
Introduction to the Seven Seals
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Revelation 4:1 Comments
After this I looked, and, behold, a door was opened in heaven.

And the first voice which I heard was as it were of a trumpet talking with me; which said,

«Come up here, and I will show you things which must be hereafter.»
Following these seven letters, another set of seven prophecies was presented to the apostle John, showing «things which must be hereafter»: the seven seals.

But before receiving the visions about the seven seals, John witnessed a majestic scene taking place in heaven.
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Picture 4 If I Were Told the Future Lesson 30
Introduction to the Seven Seals
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Revelation 4:2,3 Comments
Immediately I was in the Spirit: and, behold, a throne was set in heaven, and One sat on the throne.

And He that sat was to look on like a jasper and a sardine stone: and there was a rainbow round about the throne, in sight like to an emerald.
In his vision, John was transported up to God’s heavenly throne, where a solemn scene of adoration and praise is taking place in honor of the Creator.

We will come back to this scene in a future lesson about the four beasts and the 24 elders.
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Picture 5 If I Were Told the Future Lesson 30
Introduction to the Seven Seals
Screen 5
Revelation 5:1 Comments
And I saw in the right hand of Him that sat on the throne a book written within and on the backside, sealed with seven seals. Then John saw, in the right hand of God, a scroll written on both sides.

This scroll being sealed with seven seals, John could not read it.
Isaiah 29:11
And the vision of all is become to you as the words of a book that is sealed, which men deliver to one that is learned, saying, «Read this, I pray you.»

And he said, «I cannot; for it is sealed.»
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Picture 6 If I Were Told the Future Lesson 30
Introduction to the Seven Seals
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Ezekiel 2:9,10 Comments
When I looked, behold, a hand was sent to me; and, see, a roll of a book was therein.

And He spread it before me; and it was written within and without: and there was written therein lamentations, and mourning, and woe.
God had already used works written on both sides to pass on His great messages, such as some prophecies and His Ten Commandments.
Exodus 32:15
And Moses turned, and went down from the mount, and the two tables of the testimony were in his hand.

The tables were written on both their sides; on the one side and on the other were they written.
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Picture 7 If I Were Told the Future Lesson 30
Introduction to the Seven Seals
Screen 7
Revelation 5:2-4 Comments
And I saw a strong angel proclaiming with a loud voice,

«Who is worthy to open the book, and to loose the seals thereof?»

And no man in heaven, nor in earth, neither under the earth, was able to open the book, neither to look thereon.

And I wept much, because no man was found worthy to open and to read the book, neither to look thereon.
To reveal the contents of the scroll, the seals had to be loosed. But no one was able to do it.

It wasn’t a matter of strength, but rather a matter of worth: «No man was found worthy to open and to read the book.»
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Picture 8 If I Were Told the Future Lesson 30
Introduction to the Seven Seals
Screen 8
Revelation 5:5 Comments
And one of the elders said to me,

«Weep not. Behold, the Lion of the tribe of Juda, the Root of David, has prevailed to open the book, and to loose the seven seals thereof.»
Here is great news for John and for us! Someone was finally found worthy to loose the seven seals, because of His victory.

But who is this «Lion of the tribe of Judah», this «Root of David», and what victory is involved?
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Picture 9 If I Were Told the Future Lesson 30
Introduction to the Seven Seals
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Genesis 49:9,10 Comments
Judah is a lion’s whelp. (...)

The scepter shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh come; and to Him shall the gathering of the people be.
First, the «Lion of the tribe of Judah» is Jesus Christ, who has prevailed over evil, sin, and death.

This title refers to Jacob’s prophecy about his son Judah, announcing that from his descendants would come «Shiloh», a word which designates the Messiah.

And Jesus indeed belongs to the line of Judah.
Luke 3:23,33,34
And Jesus Himself began to be about thirty years of age, being, as was supposed, the son of Joseph, (...) the son of Juda, which was the son of Jacob (...).
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Picture 10 If I Were Told the Future Lesson 30
Introduction to the Seven Seals
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Jeremiah 23:5 Comments
«Behold, the days come,» said the Lord, «that I will raise to David a righteous Branch, and a King shall reign and prosper, and shall execute judgment and justice in the earth.» As for the expression «the Root of David», it also designates Jesus Christ, just as He Himself clearly confirms it.
Revelation 22:16
I, Jesus, have sent My angel to testify to you these things in the churches.

I am the Root and the Offspring of David.
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Picture 11 If I Were Told the Future Lesson 30
Introduction to the Seven Seals
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Revelation 3:21 Comments
To him that overcomes will I grant to sit with Me in My throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with My Father in His throne. Finally, by His death and His resurrection, Jesus Christ achieved a complete and resounding victory over evil, death, and the world.

This great victory made Him worthy to loose its seven seals and to open the scroll.
John 16:33
[Jesus said,] «In the world you shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.»
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Picture 12 If I Were Told the Future Lesson 30
Introduction to the Seven Seals
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Revelation 5:6,7 Comments
And I beheld, and, see, in the middle of the throne and of the four beasts, and in the middle of the elders, stood a Lamb as it had been slain, having seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven Spirits of God sent forth into all the earth.

And He came and took the book out of the right hand of Him that sat on the throne.
John’s vision continues with the subject of the sacrifice of Jesus, the Lamb of God slain for our salvation.

This Lamb has seven horns and seven eyes. What is the meaning of such a description?
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Picture 13 If I Were Told the Future Lesson 30
Introduction to the Seven Seals
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John 1:29 Comments
The next day John saw Jesus coming to him, and said,

«Behold the Lamb of God, which takes away the sin of the world.»
First, let’s remember that Jesus is the Lamb of God.

When we accept His sacrifice for the forgiveness of our sins, our name is written in the Book of Life of the Lamb.
Revelation 13:8
And all that dwell on the earth shall worship [the beast], whose names are not written in the Book of Life of the Lamb.
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Picture 14 If I Were Told the Future Lesson 30
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Daniel 7:24 Comments
The ten horns out of this kingdom are ten kings that shall arise. The horns symbolize authority, power, rule, royalty.

As for the number seven, it indicates perfection in Bible prophecy.

Therefore, the seven horns of the Lamb symbolize His perfect dominion over all the nations of the earth.
Daniel 8:22
Now that [horn] being broken, whereas four stood up for it, four kingdoms shall stand up out of the nation.
Deuteronomy 33:17
And His horns are like the horns of unicorns: with them He shall push the people together to the ends of the earth.
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Picture 15 If I Were Told the Future Lesson 30
Introduction to the Seven Seals
Screen 15
Zechariah 4:2,10 Comments
I have looked, and behold a candlestick all of gold, with a bowl on the top of it, and his seven lamps thereon. (...)

Those seven (...) are the eyes of the Lord, which run to and fro through the whole earth.
The seven eyes of the Lamb, which are the seven Spirits of God, symbolize His omniscience.

By the Holy Spirit’s action, He sees and knows everything.

The lesson «Letter to the Church of Sardis» gave us a description of the seven Spirits of God.
Revelation 4:5
Out of the throne proceeded lightning and thunder and voices.

And there were seven lamps of fire burning before the throne, which are the seven Spirits of God.
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Picture 16 If I Were Told the Future Lesson 30
Introduction to the Seven Seals
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Revelation 5:8,9 Comments
And when He had taken the book, the four beasts and four and twenty elders fell down before the Lamb, having every one of them harps, and golden vials full of odors, which are the prayers of saints.

And they sang a new song, saying,

«You are worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for You were slain, and have redeemed us to God by Your blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation.»
And now, what is this sealed scroll that only the Lamb can open?
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Picture 17 If I Were Told the Future Lesson 30
Introduction to the Seven Seals
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1 Peter 1:10,12 Comments
Of which salvation the prophets have inquired and searched diligently, who prophesied of the grace that should come to you. (...)

To whom it was revealed, that not to themselves, but to us they did minister the things, which are now reported to you by them that have preached the gospel to you with the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven; which things the angels desire to look into.
The scroll sealed with seven seals contains the destiny of mankind. Now, the Bible clearly explains what that destiny is: «The wages of sin is death.» (Romans 6:23).

By His sacrifice on the cross, only Jesus can offer us another destiny, that is, eternal life. This is why He is the only One able to open the seven seals.

When He opens the scroll, Jesus will reveal the destiny each one has chosen.
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Picture 18 If I Were Told the Future Lesson 30
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Revelation 5:9 Comments
You are worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof.

For You were slain, and have redeemed us to God by Your blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation.
Just like the letters to the churches, the seven seals describe seven stages of history.

The opening of the seventh seal leads to Jesus’s return, then revealing to everyone the destiny each one has chosen here on earth.
Revelation 7:10 [NKJV]
Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!
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Picture 19 If I Were Told the Future Lesson 30
Introduction to the Seven Seals
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Revelation 5:9 Comments
And they sang a new song, saying,

«You are worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof.»
The opening of the seven seals, revealing the contents of the scroll, led the audience to sing «a new song».

What was the theme of that «new song»?
Revelation 14:3
And they sang as it were a new song before the throne, and before the four beasts, and the elders.

And no man could learn that song but the hundred and forty and four thousand, which were redeemed from the earth.
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Picture 20 If I Were Told the Future Lesson 30
Introduction to the Seven Seals
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The theme of the «new song» emphasizes salvation, our final deliverance:
«O sing to the Lord a new song; for He has done marvelous things: His right hand, and His holy arm, has gotten Him the victory. The Lord has made known His salvation: His righteousness has He openly showed in the sight of the heathen. He has remembered His mercy and His truth toward the house of Israel: all the ends of the earth have seen the salvation of our God.» (Psalm 98:1-3)

«I waited patiently for the Lord; and He inclined to me, and heard my cry. He brought me up also out of a horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet on a rock, and established my goings. And He has put a new song in my mouth.» (Psalm 40:1-3)

«Sing to Him a new song; play skillfully with a loud noise. For the word of the Lord is right; and all His works are done in truth. He loves righteousness and judgment: the earth is full of the goodness of the Lord.» (Psalm 33:3-5)
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Picture 21 If I Were Told the Future Lesson 30
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Revelation 5:9,10 Comments
And they sang a new song, saying,

«You are worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for You were slain, and have redeemed us to God by Your blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation; and have made us to our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth.»
The new song emphasizes the salvation of people coming «out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation».

Furthermore, it brings out the glorious victory of Jesus, which allows His redeemed people to be granted access to the eternal kingdom, and to become priests to God.
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Picture 22 If I Were Told the Future Lesson 30
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Jesus Christ’s salvation makes us a kingdom of priests to God:
«Now therefore, if you will obey My voice indeed, and keep My covenant, then you shall be a peculiar treasure to Me above all people: for all the earth is Mine. And you shall be to Me a kingdom of priests, and a holy nation.» (Exodus 19:5,6)

«Jesus Christ is the faithful Witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the Prince of the kings of the earth. To Him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in His own blood, and has made us kings and priests to God and His Father; to Him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.» (Revelation 1:5,6)

«Blessed and holy is He that has part in the first resurrection: on such the second death has no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with Him a thousand years.» (Revelation 20:6)
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Picture 23 If I Were Told the Future Lesson 30
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Revelation 5:9 Comments
You are worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for You were slain, and have redeemed us to God by Your blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation. Let’s remember that we entirely owe our victory over evil to the blood of Jesus Christ, who allows us to overcome sin, and inherit eternal life.
Revelation 12:11
They overcame [Satan] by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony.
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Picture 24 If I Were Told the Future Lesson 30
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Our victory does not depend on our own merits, but on the blood of Jesus:
«You were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; but with the precious blood of Christ.» (1 Peter 1:18,19)

«In [Jesus Christ] we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace.» (Ephesians 1:7)

«Having therefore, brothers, boldness to enter into the Holiest by the blood of Jesus (...).» (Hebrews 10:19)

«To [Jesus] that loved us, and washed us from our sins in His own blood, and has made us kings and priests to God (...).» (Revelation 1:5,6)

«Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by His own blood [Christ] entered in once into the Holy Place, having obtained eternal redemption for us.» (Hebrews 9:12)
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Picture 25 If I Were Told the Future Lesson 30
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Revelation 5:11,12 Comments
And I beheld, and I heard the voice of many angels round about the throne and the beasts and the elders: and the number of them was ten thousand times ten thousand, and thousands of thousands; saying with a loud voice,

«Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honor, and glory, and blessing!»
Finally, as Jesus was about to loose the first seal, the entire audience directed to Him great praise containing seven elements, once again emphasizing the perfection of Him whom we adore.
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Picture 26 If I Were Told the Future Lesson 30
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Power, riches, wisdom, strength, honor, glory and blessing to God!
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Picture 27 If I Were Told the Future Lesson 30
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Revelation 5:13,14 Comments
And every creature which is in heaven, and on the earth, and under the earth, and such as are in the sea, and all that are in them, heard I saying,

«Blessing, and honor, and glory, and power, be to Him that sits on the throne, and to the Lamb for ever and ever!»

And the four beasts said, «Amen!»

And the four and twenty elders fell down and worshipped Him that lives for ever and ever.
The scene ends with this solemn act of adoration toward the Father and the Son.

Jesus will now loose the seven seals, and we will study their prophetic content in our next lessons.
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Picture 28 If I Were Told the Future Lesson 30
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Let’s thank God for all His blessings:
Our Father in heaven,

The apostle John was comforted by these words, «Weep not. Behold, the Lion of the tribe of Juda, the Root of David, has prevailed to open the book, and to loose the seven seals thereof.» (Revelation 5:5).

We will be forever thankful to You for the victory of Jesus which reveals the scroll and its seals, but which above all allows us to overcome evil, and to inherit eternal life.

May Your Spirit guide us, as we start on the study of the seven seals. In the name of Jesus Christ we pray.

Amen.
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Lesson 30 - Test The test of Lesson 30 is waiting for you!

Source of the Pictures of this Lesson
Screen 1: In: «Photo Gallery 25,000» by Media Graphics International, CD #4, AUSTR060.JPG. Screen 2: MANISCALCO, Joe. In: «Revelation Seminars», Seminars Unlimited, 1986, lesson #5 («Sept Messages Particuliers de Jésus»), p.1. Screen 3: BURGKMAIR, Hans. «Saint John the Evangelist on Patmos» (1518), Alte Pinakothek, Munich. In: «Revelation - Art of the Apocalypse» (GRUBB, Nancy), Abeville Press Publishers, 1997, p.11. Screen 4: In: «La Révélation - le grand dénouement est proche», New York, Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society, 1988, p.75. Screen 5: In: «La Révélation - le grand dénouement est proche», New York, Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society, 1988, p.83. Screen 6: In: «Awake» magazine (February 22, 1989), New York, Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society, p.17. Screen 7: RUDEEN, Herbert. In: «The Bible Story, volume 10» (MAXWELL, Arthur S.), p.181. Used by permission. Copyright ©1957, 1985 by Review and Herald® Publishing Association, USA. All Rights Reserved. Screen 8: BLAKE, William. «The Four and Twenty Elders Casting Their Crowns before the Divine Throne» (1803-1805), Tate Gallery, London. In: «Revelation - Art of the Apocalypse» (GRUBB, Nancy), Abeville Press Publishers, 1997, p.17. Screen 9: «Lions do their best hunting on the plateaus of eastern Africa.» In: «Deluxe Compton’s Interactive Encyclopedia CD - 2000 Edition», Compton’s Home Library, 1999. Screen 10: OTTO. «The Ascension». In: «Beautiful Bible Stories» (MARTIN, Patricia Summerlin), Southwestern Company, 1964, p.450-h. Screen 11: BLOCH, Carl. «Come Unto Me». Landskrona Church, Sweden. Screen 12: BLAKE, William. «The Four and Twenty Elders Casting Their Crowns before the Divine Throne» (1803-1805), Tate Gallery, London. In: «Revelation - Art of the Apocalypse» (GRUBB, Nancy), Abeville Press Publishers, 1997, p.17. Screen 13: MANISCALCO, Joe. In: «Images from the Bible and Sacred History CD», Chosen Works, MLI Software, JM128.BMP. Picture edited by Cyberspace Ministry. Screen 14: In: «The Watchtower» magazine (July 15, 1994), New York, Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society, p.7. Screen 15: In: «The Bible Story, volume 2» (MAXWELL, Arthur S.), p.165. Used by permission. Copyright ©1954, 1982 by Review and Herald® Publishing Association, USA. All Rights Reserved. Screen 16: ALBEREGNO, Jacobello (d. 1397). «Vision of Saint John the evangelist on Patmos», Galleria dell’ Accademia, Venice. In: «Revelation - Art of the Apocalypse» (GRUBB, Nancy), Abeville Press Publishers, 1997, p.16. Screen 17: In: «Prophecy Seminars», Seminars Unlimited, 1989, Daniel lesson #30 («Sharing Daniel’s Message with the World»), p.5. Screen 18: In: «Le Moniteur», Pacific Press Publishing Association, Second Quarter 2000, front cover. Screen 19: In: «La Révélation - le grand dénouement est proche», New York, Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society, 1988, p.86. Screen 20: RUDEEN, Herbert. In: «Uncle Arthur’s Bible Book» (MAXWELL, Arthur S.), p.198. Used by permission. Copyright ©1945, 1947, 1948, 1949, 1968, 1996 by Review and Herald® Publishing Association, USA. All Rights Reserved. Screen 21: HEASLIP, William. In: «The Bible Story, volume 9» (MAXWELL, Arthur S.), p.51. Used by permission. Copyright ©1957, 1985 by Review and Herald® Publishing Association, USA. All Rights Reserved. Screen 22: GREENE, Nathan. «The Family of God». In: «Inspirational Fine Art», Hart Classic Editions (www.hartclassics.com), p.3. Screen 23: JUSTINEN, Lars. In: «La Sentinelle» magazine (April 1995), Pacific Press Publishing Association, p.13. Screen 24: RUIZ, Eduardo. In: «La Sentinelle» magazine (April 1995), Pacific Press Publishing Association, p.8. Screen 25: In: «La Révélation - le grand dénouement est proche», New York, Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society, 1988, p.121. Screen 26: JUSTINEN, Lars. In: «Questionnaire Adulte de l’Ecole du Sabbat», Pacific Press Publishing Association, Fourth Quarter, 1998, front cover. Table of Screen 26: STEEL, John. In: «La Sentinelle» magazine (April 1993), Pacific Press Publishing Association, p.10. Screen 27: In: «La Révélation - le grand dénouement est proche», New York, Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society, 1988, p.317. Screen 28: In: «Photo Gallery 25,000» by Media Graphics International, CD #4, HAWI1067.JPG.
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Lesson 30 - Test The test of Lesson 30 is waiting for you!