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Angie Baby

October 12, 2016

JW Reporters

All Along the Watchtower…

:42 #update #xpostspunkygidget

     1. DISASTER HITTING JEHOVAH’S WITNESSES.  The Governing Body board of the Watchtower organization over JWs long taught before all JWs who lived in the 1914 Generation died, the End would bring Jehovah God’s kingdom with paradise on earth where physically & mentally ill JWs would be healed & live forever.  By 2014 the Body had to teach that an Overlap Generation would. Many disappointed JWs went slack. In 2015 the Body had a Return To Jehovah campaign and 2016 Loyalty conventions with doomsday films and a talk saying loyal JWs should shun inactive JWs. Ghana’s JWs did not clap, elders quietly began helping others exit.  WT  reprimanded Nigerian elders for giving foes access to jw.org.  The foes sent documents to the Australian Royal Commission (ARC) investigating the WT policy of hiding pedophiles etc (1Cor 6:9-11) among JWs etc. Families quietly quit in Latin America & worldwide; grew their own independent Bible study groups in their homes teaching paradise kingdom blessings. Child custody judges disliked WT films inducing some to anxiety-panic attacks etc; on TV after the convention Adrian Karibian climbed Sydey Harbour Bridge to proclaim the End is about to hit.  The Body hustled for more money to weather the storm. For example they put ATMs in conventions, pushed JWs to make monthly auto bank withdrawls, used internet-fed JW TV to urge more donations, made cheaper, shorter, less quality literature, urged literature be downloaded more, laid off thousands of “Bethelite” staffers, dumped traveling City & District Overseers, compacted congregations, sold some halls & branches in nations including Spain’s newly built complex, sold the Brooklyn buildings sources says from $1 billion to $2 billion possibly 2 mostly to Jared Kushner (in-law of Donald Trump), built a paradise setting new headquarters near Warwick, NY on land that had had nickle contamination etc.  By 2016 two UK commissions were investigating WT in the UK over child abuse & charity fraud.  Germany also has begun a commission.

    2. THEY had JWs start shifting from doorstep preaching more to cart literature work.  Older long-loyal anointed (essentially born-agains hoping to go to heaven) in Brooklyn including Ted Jaracz’s widow called it a mistake at a private meeting so the Body told them to pack & leave though many had no family to return to as those had died; “concerned” younger Bethelites sent the Body word to find the older ones living arrangements or the story could get into the papers. The Body then helped them but word went to metro NYC congregations so that one JW TV talk at the end alluded to it indirectly and claimed if still alive GB members Barr and Jaracz would have backed the Body’s many changes. Barr did not like WTs drift. Jaracz’s support is doubtful; his dissenting widow died in 2015. Protests in & out of WT grow at Memorials of the Last Supper where only anointed JWs can partake. Elders at an Atlanta were told crowd in on “Jesus is God” protesters; the next day line up to block the view of them. See youtube, silentlambs.org, jwfacts.org & sixscreensofthewatchtower.

    3. FOES pointed out (youtube) JW TV showed Sam Herd with an expensive rolex watch, Gerritt Losch’s gem rings etc, so cameras have panned closer to faces to avoid JWs seeing those.  The Warwick compound includes an infirmary, underground parking lot, some hidden bunkers, copper roof shielding against RF surveillance. The Body want to approve more blood substitutes possibly after the 2 UK investigations.  Wealthy JWs tied to the No Blood Industry make donations, want to expand the business. The anti-transfusions blood policy has likely blocked millions from becoming JWs. In 2015 the Australian Royal Commission aired child abuse hearings with the Body’s Geoffrey Jackson saying we don’t shun or do corporal punishment.  His use of Theocratic Warfare verbal tactics was based on “we don’t shun but those shunned do it to themselves” & “parents choose the discipline.” Still, the ARC declared 77 deficiencies. The Body rejected the ARC’s suggestion of letting women attend Judicial Committees when female victims are questioned by all males including “repentent” pedophiles etc per 1Cor 6:9-11. Jackson gave scriptures against but the ARC senior counsel Angus Stewart countered with others. ARC is still exhibiting the normally secret Shepherd The Flock manual on its site where JW sisters worldwide can read it. More commission hearings will spark more news, legal actions or laws. Canada may get a commission. Marci Hamilton wants Congress to investigate or legislate to make all groups protect kids to stay tax exempt. 

    4. BODY member Anthony Morris & other American speakers in 2015-16 went to London, Warsaw etc, & said Gog of Magog (governments) are causing Great Tribulation possibly to scare JWs to do more, bluff commission officials to back off, fearing a Jonestown type suicide. Elders have noted that Body to BOE letters have said have lists of loyal ones to hide in safe places. Many JWs have to-go bags ready, etc. WT anti-gay leafletting in Devon & Cornwall in the UK upset the LGBT group Stonewall in 2016 yet Bethelites allege Body member Sanderson is a Non-Practicing Gay. Losch & others got on the Body after telling parents of molested kids to “wait on Jehovah.” We don’t need Body members alleged pedophiles etc to believe in paradise etc. It soils Jehovah’s image when those let local pedophile elders and like ilk (1Cor 6:9-11) night stalk, spy on other JWs, phone & noise harass, key apostates cars. Google search for example youtube video “NEWS 5 INVESTIGATES: Sex offender going door-to-door” about perp Wayne Ivery in Colorado Springs. Please mail copies to JWs & others in the public. 

    A.) DID you know Raymond Franz while on the Governing Body of the Watchtower (WT) organization over Jehovah’s Witnesses (JWs) wrote Crisis Of Conscience & In Search Of Christian Freedom.  He learned all archaeologists agreed Jerusalem was destroyed in 587 BC instead of 607 BC but the Body refused to accept that since it meant their teaching Christ had returned invisibly in 1914 was wrong.  In the Jan 1, 1972 WT  magazine (p. 32) they made the Bedroom Law if a man had sex with another man or animal, his wife could not scripturally divorce him as there was no joining with another flesh to conceive.  They reversed it eventually; then when elders in a California congregation reported a couple for privately having literature & photos of non-missionary type sex, the Body ruled they must be disfellowshipped (shunned cruelly). WT magazines (Dec 1, 1972, Nov 15, 1974) banned married JW couples from non-missionary sex. The WT of Feb 15, 1978, reversed the Bedroom Law but the March 15, 1983 issue banned as “unnatural” oral intimacy including by JWs otherwise unable; also warned oral sex disqualifies male JWs from becoming elders, can lead to expulsion. The Bedroom Laws are rarely mentioned even among JWs to the Public or those talked into new Bible studies. Likely few to nobody would ever become a JW if the degree of invasiveness were known.

    B.) FOR DECADES the Body banned JWs from alternative service in place of fighting. The Body once came within a vote of changing that; long after he was off the Body they changed & published it in the WT of May 1, 1996 but gave no apology to the many JWs who had had to serve prison time or their families. JWs in Malawi were attacked, raped, had homes and crops burnt in 1964, 1967, 1972, 1975 since the Body ruled they must not buy a cheap card saying they supported Malawi’s sole political party though Christ at Matthew 5:41 & Paul at Romans 13:7 said render what is due to governments.  Simultaneously they let Mexican JWs pay money to military officers to obtain cards saying untruthfully they had served in the military. Weak logic or racism? While preaching in kingdom halls against the UN, WT affiliated as an NGO 1991 to 2001; later claimed it was just to keep a UN library card.    

    C.) WT BRANCH heads at Athens in 1986 spied on 100+ exJWs who kept reading & discussing the Bible in homes. On April 6, 1987 some 50 met at the home of Nick & Eftihia Bozartzis.  Nick spotted two watching the house, one a JW he knew. As he approached they fled.  That Apr 9 the house-church group was to meet at Voula Kalokerinou home but instead decided to celebrate the Memorial on April 11. She spotted 5 men in a car across from her house the next 2 evenings; on the 11th an unknown car & van with back window papered except for a circle in the center. Men in the car went to talk to men in the van several times. A friend went to see what was going on and the car sped away but through the van’s circle he saw video camera equipment used by elder Nikolas Antoniou & branch elder Dimetre Zerdes. Others from her house & a policeman from the nearby Italian Embassy came.  The Bethelites had driven to a park to unload equipment; were arrested for invasion of privacy.  They lied to a D.A. named Kontaxis they were only there to film a relative of Zerdes.  In reality his cousin Eftihia Bozartzis had disassociated from WT or JWs 2 years before, meaning he had nothing to do with her so was lying.  The D.A. denounced the trampling on “human rights.”  Confiscated film showed Christian ExJWs entering the house church meeting, Bozartzis not even in the film. Later WT’s Awake! magazine blasted the Greek Orthodox Church for having a stadium to cancel a WT assembly possibly to make word about Watchtower reps being convicted of criminal conduct seem less believable to other JWs if they ever heard of it.

  D.) HE REMINDED all awakening JWs & ExJWs that Acts 5:27-29 says “Obedience to God comes before obedience to men” including Governing Body men. Christianity is a “way of life” which include “sacred services” like day & night acts of kindness, parents raising happy children to do right, husbands keeping marriage honorable and working whole-souled as to God, wives known for “hospitality, kindness and neighborliness, all looking after orphans, widows & others in need.  Franz also noted Christ said he is present when even “two or three” Christians gather.  Though WT says JWs must believe & all things the Body says, Paul says “be united in the same mind and the same purpose,” but not to be totally uniform like robots, also true unity is when Christians are free to have some different views (Romans 14) yet be united by Love which is the only “perfect bond of union.” (Col 3:14)  The Bible says follow the Lamb (Christ), obey God not Watchtower men.  Apostolic authority today is not from successors of apostles or other men but the scriptures the apostles wrote to help us. Raymond Franz died in 2010 but noted Christian ExJWs can as needed fellowship while staying loyal to God in their homes; there are friendly churches of similar beliefs like some Adventist groups, some independent Baptist churches etc.  The internet, Facebook, free international phone conferences etc also offer new ways to meet via the internet. Groups showing real love grow.  Nobody needs WT to preach kingdom blessings, show loving-kindness. In 2016 WT was battered by its many past failed prophecies, governments investigating the hiding & sheltering of pedophiles etc.  Freeminds.org, sixscreensofthewatchtower, silentlambs.org, jwfacts.com. Get copies to JWs & others please.

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Are You There God? It's Me, Gidget, Congregation, Doctrines, Documentation, Religion, Scriptures, Truth

Jehovah’s Witnesses and Child Abuse—Is there a problem?

News reports claim that the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society, the official name for the organization that governs the Jehovah’s Witnesses worldwide, has been engaged in covering up child abuse within the religion on a massive scale.

But are these reports justified? Is this a case of an innocent religion being unfairly maligned because of the actions of one or two bad apples in their ranks? How many victims are there? Do the Governing Body know about these issues? What’s really going in the multiple courtroom cases that Watchtower has been fighting across the world?

Jehovah’s Witnesses and Child Abuse—Is there a problem?  is a painstakingly researched documentary that draws together evidence from sources spanning the past twenty five years…

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Doctrines, Religion

Apostasy Defined by Watchtower

Apostasy, as defined by the Watchtower, is “a baptized Christian [who] abandons the teachings of Jehovah, as presented by the faithful and discreet slave, and persists in believing other doctrine”.

So specifically it is all Christians who believe the scriptures, as the teachings “of Jehovah” as taught by “the faithful and discreet slave” are often in conflict with what the scriptures teach. (1 Tim 6:3-5)

The scriptures say, “the dead did not come to life until the thousand years were ended.”

For example, the scriptures say: “…the dead did not come to life until the thousand years were ended” (Rev 20:5) while the Watchtower teaches “the general resurrection takes place on earth during Christ’s Millennial Reign.” (Resurrection, The Reasoning Book, rs p. 333-p. 340)

The Watchtower teaches the “resurrection takes place on earth during Christ’s Millennial Reign.”

To believe the scriptures—the inspired Word of God—over what the Watchtower teaches is‚ according to them, to be an apostate. (2 Tim 3:16, Acts 17:11)

Thus, if you are a Jehovah’s Witness who believes the scriptures instead of the Watchtower, you will be disfellowshipped. Continue reading

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Doctrines

Philip the Diákonos

The Choosing of the Seven

1 In those days when the number of disciples was increasing, the Hellenistic Jewsa among them complained against the Hebraic Jews because their widows were being overlooked in the daily distribution of food. 2 So the Twelve gathered all the disciples together and said, “It would not be right for us to neglect the ministry of the word of God in order to wait on tables. 3 Brothers and sisters, choose seven men from among you who are known to be full of the Spirit and wisdom. We will turn this responsibility over to them 4 and will give our attention to prayer and the ministry of the word.”

“Brothers and sisters, choose seven men from among you who are known to be full of the Spirit and wisdom…”

5 This proposal pleased the whole group. They chose Stephen, a man full of faith and of the Holy Spirit; also Philip, Procorus, Nicanor, Timon, Parmenas, and Nicolas from Antioch, a convert to Judaism. 6 They presented these men to the apostles, who prayed and laid their hands on them.

“They chose Stephen, a man full of faith and of the Holy Spirit; also Philip…”

7 So the word of God spread. The number of disciples in Jerusalem increased rapidly, and a large number of priests became obedient to the faith.

Stephen Seized

8 Now Stephen, a man full of God’s grace and power, performed great wonders and signs among the people.9 Opposition arose, however, from members of the Synagogue of the Freedmen (as it was called)—Jews of Cyrene and Alexandria as well as the provinces of Cilicia and Asia—who began to argue with Stephen. 10 But they could not stand up against the wisdom the Spirit gave him as he spoke.

11 Then they secretly persuaded some men to say, “We have heard Stephen speak blasphemous words against Moses and against God.”

12 So they stirred up the people and the elders and the teachers of the law. They seized Stephen and brought him before the Sanhedrin. 13 They produced false witnesses, who testified, “This fellow never stops speaking against this holy place and against the law. 14 For we have heard him say that this Jesus of Nazareth will destroy this place and change the customs Moses handed down to us.”

“his face was like the face of an angel”

15 All who were sitting in the Sanhedrin looked intently at Stephen, and they saw that his face was like the face of an angel.

diákonos

1249 diákonos (from 1223 /diá, “thoroughly” and konis, “dust”) – properly, “thoroughly raise up dust by moving in a hurry, and so to minister” (WP, 1, 162); ministry (sacred service).

1249 /diákonos (“ministry”) in the NT usually refers to the Lord inspiring His servants to carry out His plan for His people – i.e. as His “minister” (like a deacon serving Him in a local church).

[A. T. Robertson, “1249 (diákonos) properly means ‘to kick up dust,’ as one running an errand.” 1249 (diákonos) is the root of the English terms, “diaconate, deacon.”

This root (diakon-) is “probably connected with the verb di?k?, ‘to hasten after, pursue‘ (perhaps originally said of a runner)” (Vine, Unger, White, NT, 147).]

STRONGS NT 1249: διάκονος

διάκονος, διακονου, , (of uncertain origin, but by no means, as was formerly thought, compounded of διά and κόνις, so as to mean, properly, ‘raising dust by hastening’; cf. ἐγκόνειν; for the alpha in the preposition διά is short, in διάκονος, long. Alexander Buttmann (1873) Lexil. i., p. 218ff (English translation, p. 231f) thinks it is derived from the obsolete διάκω equivalent to διήκω (allied with διώκω; cf. Vanicek, p. 363)); one who executes the commands of another, especially of a master; a sergeant, attendant, minister;

1. universally: of the servant of a king, Matthew 22:13; with the genitive of the person served, Matthew 20:26; Matthew 23:11; Mark 9:35; Mark 10:43 (in which passage it is used figuratively of those who advance others’ interests even at the sacrifice of their own); τῆς ἐκκλησίας, of one who does what promotes the welfare and prosperity of the church,Colossians 1:25; διάκονοι τοῦ Θεοῦ, those through whom God carries on his administration on earth, as magistrates, Romans 13:4; teachers of the Christian religion, 1 Corinthians 3:5; 2 Corinthians 6:4; 1 Thessalonians 3:2 R T Tr WH text L marginal reading; the same are called διάκονοι (τοῦ) Χριστοῦ, 2 Corinthians 11:23; Colossians 1:7;1 Timothy 4:6; ἐν κυρίῳ, in the cause of the Lord, Colossians 4:7; (Ephesians 6:21); διάκονος μου, my follower, John 12:26; τοῦΣατανᾶ, whom Satan uses as a servant, 2 Corinthians 11:15; (ἁμαρτίας, Galatians 2:17); διάκονος περιτομῆς (abstract for concrete), of Christ, who labored for the salvation of the circumcised, i. e. the Jews, Romans 15:8; with the genitive of the thing to which service is rendered, i. e. to which one is devoted: καινῆς διαθήκης, 2 Corinthians 3:6; τοῦ εὐαγγελίου, Ephesians 3:7; Colossians 1:23;δικαιοσύνης, 2 Corinthians 11:15.

2. a deacon, one who, by virtue of the office assigned him by the congregation, cares for the poor and has charge of and distributes the money collected for their use (cf. BB. DD., Dict. of Christ. Antiq., Schaff-Herzog under the word ; Lightfoot‘s Commentary on Philippians, dissert. i. § i.; Julius Muller, Dogmatische Abhandlungen, p. 560ff): Philippians 1:1; 1 Timothy 3:8, 12, cf. Acts 6:3ff; διάκονος, a deaconess (ministra, Pliny, epistles 10, 97), a woman to whom the care of either poor or sick women was entrusted, Romans 16:1.

3. a waiter, one who serves food and drink: John 2:5, 9, as inXenophon, mem. 1, 5, 2; Hier. 3, 11 (4, 2); Polybius 31, 4, 5; Lucian, de merced. cond. § 26; Athen. 7, p. 291 a.; 10, 420 e.; see διακονέω, 2 and διακονία, 5; (also Wetstein (1752) on Matthew 4:11).[SYNONYMS: διάκονος, δοῦλος, θεράπων, ὑπηρέτης: “διάκονος represents the servant in his activity for the work; not in his relation, either servile, as that of the δοῦλος, or more voluntary, as in the case of the θεράπων, to a person” Trench; yet cf. e. g. Romans 13:4; 2 Corinthians 6:4 etc.). δοῦλος opposed to ἐλεύθερος, and correlate to δεσπότης or κύριος, denotes a bondman, one who sustains a permanent servile relation to another. θεράπων is the voluntary performer of services, whether as a freeman or a slave; it is a nobler, tenderer word than δοῦλος. ὑπηρέτης according to its etymol. suggests subordination. Cf. Trench, § ix.; B. D. under the word <reference_work:smith’s bible=”” dictionary=””>; Meyer onEphesians 3:7; Schmidt, chapter 164.]

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Doctrines

Cultural Context in the interpretation and translation of 1 Timothy 2:11-14

Let a woman learn in silence with all submission.  And I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man, but to be in silence.  For Adam was formed first, then Eve.  And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived, fell into transgression.

— 1 Timothy 2:11-14 NKJV.

[Now in response to the Gnostic teaching stemming from the worship of Artemis that Eve was the originator of Adam and the goddess of life], let a woman learn (in agreement with sound doctrine) with all submission (to that doctrine). And I do not permit a woman to teach that she is the originator or the illuminator of man, but to be in agreement (with the congregation). For Adam was first formed first, then Eve. And Adam was not deceived [his was direct disobedience], but woman being deceived [thus not being infallible], fell into transgression [proving that she was human.]

— 1 Timothy 2:11-12 Paraphrased and Amplified

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Doctrines, Religion

Study Buddies? Watchtower says, “No”

Does ‘the faithful and discreet slave’ endorse independent groups of Witnesses who meet together to engage in Scriptural research or debate?— Matt. 24:45, 47.

No, it does not.

Thus, “the faithful and discreet slave” does not endorse any literature, meetings, or Web sites that are not produced or organized under its oversight. Continue reading

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Doctrines

The Jews, The Joes, and the Hebrews of Israel

I’m working on a visualization of the nation of Israel and the divided kingdom—The House of Judah and The House of Joseph. Please leave any suggestions below!

Take Two:

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Doctrines

The Jews, The Joes, and the Hebrews of Israel

I’m working on a visualization of the nation of Israel and the divided kingdom—The House of Judah and The House of Joseph. Please leave any suggestions below!

Take Two:

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Satan and the demons continue to mislead people
Doctrines, Religion

Heaven is Full—The Hope of the Great Crowd

The Watchtower has always taught that the 144,000 are the ones to go to heaven—but most Jehovah’s Witnesses today don’t realize that Russell taught that they were all part of the “anointed” “remnant” going to heaven.

The remnant are a small portion of all the anointed followers of Christ who are pictured in heaven in Revelation.

Indeed, until 1935 when the teaching changed, the Watchtower presented the urgency for all to become one of the limited  144,000 who would go to heaven. With the message that of the doors of heaven would soon be closed, membership swelled… Continue reading

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Beulah
Doctrines, Religion

Beulah, and the name designated by the very mouth of Jehovah

Beulah There was a sister I knew named Beulah growing up. I thought it a strange name, not being acquainted with it’s meaning.

Today I crossed a street I often cross—Beulah—and wondered what my parents think of when they see the name.

Nowadays I know the significance of the name. You see, this past year I started studying the bible—not “studying the bible” like Jehovah’s Witnesses do, studying the Watchtower’s publications and their interpretation of the bible, but actually reading and studying the bible.

I found it hard to just read the bible, as in read without interpretation, the scriptures. I was raised in the Watchtower Society, and reading the New World Translation meant walking down familiar pathways where I couldn’t see the forest for the trees of interpretation.

Thus, I took to reading a different version—and then multiple versions—and when I came to something that surprised me, I’d search out to see if these words in these versions were indeed true. Continue reading

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Doctrines, Religion

The Irony

DAILY TEXT FROM THE WATCHTOWER BIBLE AND TRACT SOCIETY

Sunday, August 26

Do not put your trust in fallacious words.—Jer. 7:4.

Some Israelites viewed the temple as a talisman that would protect them from enemies. (Jer. 7:1-4) Earlier, Israelites viewed the ark of the covenant as a charm that would protect them in battle. (1 Sam. 4:3, 10, 11) Constantine the Great painted the Greek letters khi and rho, the first two letters of the title “Christ” in Greek, on his soldiers’ shields in hopes of protecting his soldiers in battle. And King Gustav Adolph II of Sweden, who fought in the Thirty Years’ War, is thought to have worn armor that had the name Iehova featured prominently on the collar. Some of God’s people who have been attacked by demons have found refuge in Jehovah by calling his name out loud. Still, an object that features God’s name should not be considered a talisman or used as a charm in everyday life as if it had some magical power of protection. This is not what it means to take refuge in the name of Jehovah. w11 1/15 1:14, 15

First, it’s interesting to see today’s scripture in context. It’s a warning:

Do not put YOUR trust in fallacious words,*+
saying, ‘The temple* of Jehovahthe temple of Jehovah,
the temple of Jehovah they are!’” — Jeremiah 7:4

Then there’s the irony of the name—the name “Jehovah” first arrived on the scene from Christendom in the 13th century.

Taking refuge in the name of God, or in the name of the Lord is not about the use of a name, but a statement about God’s attributes and activities. When Jesus made his father’s name manifest to his disciples, it wasn’t by use of a proper name, but it was by perfectly representing his father, doing the will and works of his father and speaking not of his own accord, but his father’s words.

Another way of putting it, is that he was “the spit and image of his father”.

Similar to how people will tell a young man that he must make a name for himself, they’re not referring to what he is called, but rather how he is known.

Do not put YOUR trust in fallacious words,*+ saying,
‘The temple* of Jehovah, the temple of Jehovah,
the temple of Jehovah they are!’” — Jeremiah 7:4

The True God

This means everlasting life—that they might know you the only true God,
and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent. — John 17:3, New American Standard Version

It’s not about a “name”, it’s about knowing the only true God.

I Never Knew You

Not everyone saying to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter into the kingdom of the heavens, but the one doing+ the will of my Father who is in the heavens will.+ 22 Many will say to me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord,+ did we not prophesy in your name, and expel demons in your name, and perform many powerful works* in your name?’+23 And yet then I will confess to them: I never knew YOU!+ Get away from me, YOU workers of lawlessness.+

The Workers of Lawlessness 

2 Thessalonians 2:1-12

However, brothers, respecting the presence*+ of our* Lord Jesus Christ and our being gathered together to him,+ we request of YOU 2 not to be quickly shaken from YOUR reason nor to be excited either through an inspired expression*+ or through a verbal message+ or through a letter+ as though from us, to the effect that the day+ of Jehovah* is here.

3 Let no one seduce YOU in any manner, because it will not come unless the apostasy*+ comes first and the man of lawlessness*+ gets revealed,+ the son of destruction.*+ 4 He is set in opposition+ and lifts himself up over everyone who is called “god” or an object of reverence, so that he sits down in the temple* of The God,* publicly showing himself to be a god.+ 5 Do YOU not remember that, while I was yet with YOU, I used to tell+ YOU these things?

6 And so now YOU know the thing+ that acts as a restraint,+ with a view to his being revealed in his own due time.+ 7 True, the mystery of this lawlessness is already at work;+ but only till he who is right now acting as a restraint* gets to be out of the way.+ 8 Then, indeed, the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord Jesus* will do away with by the spirit of his mouth+ and bring to nothing by the manifestation+ of his presence.+ 9 But the lawless one’s presence* is according to the operation*+ of Satan with every powerful work and lying signs and portents+ 10 and with every unrighteous deception*+ for those who are perishing,+ as a retribution because they did not accept the love+ of the truth that they might be saved.+11 So that is why God lets an operation of error go to them, that they may get to believing the lie,+ 12 in order that they all may be judged because they did not believe the truth+ but took pleasure* in unrighteousness.+

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Doctrines, Religion

The Body of Christ

DAILY TEXT FROM THE WATCHTOWER BIBLE AND TRACT SOCIETY

Just as the body is one but has many members, and all the members of that body, although being many, are one body, so also is the Christ.—1 Cor. 12:12.

Jehovah created mankind to be interdependent. The human race exhibits a wide variety of looks, personalities, and skills. Additionally, he endowed the first humans with godly qualities that would enable them to cooperate with each other and to depend on each other. (Gen. 1:27; 2:18) Nevertheless, the world of mankind in general is now alienated from God and has never, as a whole, been able to act in unity. (1 John 5:19) Therefore, considering that the first-century Christian congregation was composed of people as diverse as Ephesian slaves, prominent Greek women, educated Jewish men, and former idol worshippers, their unity must have seemed miraculous. (Acts 13:1; 17:4; 1 Thess. 1:9; 1 Tim. 6:1) True worship enables people to cooperate as harmoniously as the members of our own body.—1 Cor. 12:13w10 9/15 2:2, 3

When I read today’s daily text I wondered how many members of the congregations of Jehovah’s Witnesses worldwide realize that the Watchtower defines the members of the congregation they refer to as limited to only the anointed.

The Watchtower teaches that Christ is the head of the congregation—but that this congregation is only comprised of 144,000 people who are anointed to go to heaven. While the bible teaches there is a special ruling class of anointed in heaven who rule the Kingdom with Christ, no where does it teach these are the only anointed or only ones in heaven. Actually Revelation tells us that the Great Crowd that no man is able to number is in heaven rendering rendering him sacred service day and night in the temple at Revelation 7:9-17.

The Watchtower elaborates on the Great Crowd in heaven.

“The Greek word (na·os’) translated “temple” in John’s vision of the great crowd is more specific. In the context of the Jerusalem temple, it usually refers to the Holy of Holies, the temple building, or the temple precincts. It is sometimes rendered “sanctuary.”—Matthew 27:5, 51; Luke 1:9, 21; John 2:20.

Members of the great crowd exercise faith in Jesus’ ransom sacrifice. They are spiritually clean, having “washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.” Hence, they are declared righteous with a view to becoming friends of God and of surviving the great tribulation. (James 2:23, 25) In many ways, they are like proselytes in Israel who submitted to the Law covenant and worshiped along with the Israelites.

Of course, those proselytes did not serve in the inner courtyard, where the priests performed their duties. And members of the great crowd are not in the inner courtyard of Jehovah’s great spiritual temple, which courtyard represents the condition of perfect, righteous human sonship of the members of Jehovah’s “holy priesthood” while they are on earth. (1 Peter 2:5) But as the heavenly elder said to John, the great crowd really is in the temple, not outside the temple area in a kind of spiritual Court of the Gentiles. What a privilege that is! And how it highlights the need for each one to maintain spiritual and moral purity at all times!” — w02 5/1 pp. 30-31

The Watchtower tells us, “Those with an earthly hope discern that they themselves are not anointed members of the body of Christ, nor are they in the new covenant that Jehovah made with those who will rule with Jesus Christ. Since “the cup” represents the new covenant, only those in the new covenant partake of the emblems. Those looking forward to everlasting life in human perfection on earth under the Kingdom are neither baptized into Jesus’ death nor called to rule with him in heaven. Were they to partake of the emblems, it would signify something that is not true with respect to them. Thus, they do not partake, though they do attend the Memorial as respectful observers. They are thankful for all that Jehovah has done for them by means of his Son, including the extending of forgiveness on the basis of Christ’s shed blood.

The final sealing of the relatively small number of Christians called to reign with Christ in heaven is nearing completion. Until the end of their life of sacrifice on earth, the anointed are spiritually strengthened by partaking of the Memorial emblems. They feel a bond of unity with their brothers and sisters as members of Christ’s body. Their partaking of the emblematic bread and wine reminds them of their responsibility to remain faithful until death.—2 Peter 1:10, 11.”

The Insight on the Scriptures book talks about this symbolic body of Christ.

Symbolic Usage. Jesus Christ is spoken of as the Head of “the congregation, which is his body.” (Eph 1:22, 23; Col 1:18) This Christian body of people has no divisions racially, nationally, or otherwise, Jews and people of all nations being represented in it. (Ga 3:28; Eph 2:16; 4:4) All are baptized by holy spirit into Christ and into his death. They are, therefore, all baptized into one body. (1Co 12:13) Thus all the body follows the head, dying his kind of death and receiving his kind of resurrection.—Ro 6:3-5; see BAPTISM (Baptism Into Christ Jesus, Into His Death).

The apostle Paul uses the functioning of the human body to illustrate the operation of the Christian congregation, likening the members living on earth at any particular time to a body, with Christ as the invisible Head. (Ro 12:4, 5; 1Co 12) He emphasizes the importance of the place each member occupies, the interdependency, the mutual love and care, and the accomplishment of work. God has set each one in his position in the body, and through the various operations of the holy spirit the body performs what is necessary. The Head, Jesus Christ, as liaison member, supplies the members of the body the things they need through the “joints and ligaments,” the means and arrangements for supplying spiritual nourishment as well as communication and coordination, so that “the body” is spiritually well fed and each part is informed of the task to perform.—Col 2:19; Eph 4:16.

One who is an anointed member of the Christian congregation, the body of Christ, … the temple organization, … One who is a member of the body of Christ, as well as other dedicated persons who are associated with these spiritually begotten body members…”

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The Power of Holy Spirit

Daily Text from the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society

You will receive power when the holy spirit arrives upon you.—Acts 1:8.

Jesus knew that his disciples in their own strength were not capable of observing all that he had commanded. Considering the scope of their preaching commission, the strength of their opponents, and the frailty of the human flesh, it was clear that they needed superhuman power. Thus, just before his ascension to heaven, Jesus assured his disciples that they would receive divine power and added: “You will be witnesses of me both in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria and to the most distant part of the earth.” That promise began to have its fulfillment at Pentecost 33 C.E. when holy spirit empowered the followers of Jesus Christ to fill Jerusalem with their preaching. No opposition was able to halt it. (Acts 4:20) “All the days until the conclusion of the system of things,” Jesus’ faithful followers, including us, would be in urgent need of that same God-given strength.—Matt. 28:20w11 1/15 4:1, 2

From referenced Watchtower — w11 1/15 4:1, 2

Jesus promised his disciples that ‘they would receive power when the holy spirit arrived upon them.’ The terms “power” and “spirit” are distinct in their meaning. God’s spirit, his active force, describes energy that is projected and exerted on people or things to accomplish God’s will. Power, however, can be defined as the “ability to act or produce an effect.” It can lie dormant in someone or something until it is needed to produce a given result. Thus, holy spirit might be likened to the electric current that energizes a rechargeable battery, whereas power is more like the latent energy that is then stored in the battery. The power that Jehovah grants to his servants by means of holy spirit gives each one of us the ability to fulfill our Christian dedication and, when necessary, to resist negative forces that are exerted upon us.—Read Micah 3:8; Colossians 1:29.

Are you led by spirit?

Today’s text tells us “Jesus’ faithful followers, including us, would be in urgent need of that same God-given strength” as the “holy spirit that empowered the followers of Jesus Christ” at Pentecost 33 C.E.

Jesus taught us to pray, “Our Father” for all who are led by God’s spirit, these are God’s sons. If, then, we are children, we are also heirs: joint heirs with Christ. (Matthew 6:9; Romans 8:14,17)

For all who are led by God’s spirit, these are God’s sons.+ For you did not receive a spirit of slavery causing fear+ again, but you received a spirit+ of adoption+ as sons, by which spirit we cry out:“Abba,+ Father!” The spirit+ itself bears witness+ with our spirit+ that we are God’s children.+ If, then, we are children, we are also heirs: heirs indeed of God, but joint heirs+ with Christ, provided we suffer+ together that we may also be glorified together.+ Consequently I reckon that the sufferings+ of the present season do not amount to anything in comparison with the glory+ that is going to be revealed in us. — Romans 8:14-18

Anti-Christ

Anti-Christ is translated literally “anti-anointed one”. As Christ is the Greek from the Hebrew word meaning Messiah, or “Anointed One”.

“Young children, it is the last hour,+ and, just as you have heard that antichrist is coming,+ even now there have come to be many antichrists;+ from which fact we gain the knowledge that it is the last hour. They went out from us, but they were not of our sort;+ for if they had been of our sort, they would have remained with us.+ But [they went out] that it might be shown up that not all are of our sort.+ And you have an anointing from the holy one;+ all of you have knowledge.+ I write you, not because you do not know the truth,+ but because you know it,+ and because no lie originates with the truth.+ “Who is the liar if it is not the one that denies that Jesus is the Christ?+ This is the antichrist,+ the one that denies the Father and the Son.+ Everyone that denies the Son does not have the Father either.+ He that confesses+ the Son has the Father also.+ As for you, let that which you have heard from [the] beginning remain in you.+ If that which you have heard from [the] beginning remains in you, you will also abide in union+ with the Son and in union with the Father.+ Furthermore, this is the promised thing that he himself promised us, the life everlasting.”+ — 1 John 2:18-25

“These things I write you about those who are trying to mislead you.+ And as for you, the anointing+ that you received from him remains in you, and you do not need anyone to be teaching you;+ but, as the anointing from him is teaching you about all things,+ and is true+ and is no lie, and just as it has taught you, remain in union+ with him. So now, little children,+ remain in union+ with him, that when he is made manifest+ we may have freeness of speech+ and not be shamed away from him at his presence.*+ If you know that he is righteous,+ you gain the knowledge that everyone who practices righteousness has been born from him.”+ — 1 John 2:18-29

“Everyone that pushes ahead*+ and does not remain+ in the teaching of the Christ does not have God.+He that does remain in this teaching is the one that has both the Father and the Son.+” — 2 John 9 :9

Insight into the Anti-Christ

The Insight book defines Anti-Christ as “against (or instead of) Christ.”

We know we are living in the last days—so then, who is “anti-anointed ones” or places themselves “‘instead’ of Christ”?

Anti-Anointed Ones

For whom has God reserved the privilege of partaking at the Lord’s Evening Meal? (Matthew 25:31-40; Revelation 14:1) God has reserved that privilege for individuals he has anointed with holy spirit to be “joint heirs with Christ.” (Romans 8:14-18; 1 John 2:20) What, then, is the position of those who hope to live forever in a global paradise under Kingdom rule? (Luke 23:43; Revelation 21:3, 4Since they are not Jesus’ joint heirs with a heavenly hope, they attend the Memorial as respectful observers.—Romans 6:3-5. — Watchtower 2003 2/15 pp. 17-22

One Mediator, One Ransom

For there is one God,+ and one mediator+ between God+ and men,+ a man, Christ Jesus,+ who gave himself a corresponding ransom for all+ — 1 Timothy 2:5, 6

Instead of Christ—or God

Jesus Christ, is not the Mediator between Jehovah God and all mankind. He is the Mediator between his heavenly Father, Jehovah God, and the nation of spiritual Israel, which is limited to only 144,000 members.” —  Worldwide Security, p10 (1986)

“Let us now unmistakably identify Jehovah’s channel of communication for our day, that we may continue in his favor. … It is vital that we appreciate this fact and respond to the directions of the “slave” as we would to the voice of God, because it is His provision.” — “Overseers of Jehovah’s People”, The Watchtower 1957 6/15 p. 370 par. 7

“Therefore Jesus said again: “Most truly I say to you, I am the door+ of the sheep. All those that have come in place of me are thieves and plunderers;+ but the sheep have not listened to them.+ I am the door;+ whoever enters through me will be saved, and he will go in and out and find pasturage.”+ — John 10:7-9

“And I have other sheep,+ which are not of this fold;+ those also I must bring,* and they will listen to my voice,+ and they will become one flock, one shepherd.+ This is why the Father loves me,+ because I surrender my soul,+ in order that I may receive it again.” — John 10:16, 17

“Jesus said to him: “I am the way+ and the truth+ and the life.+ No one comes to the Father except through me.+ If you men had known me, you would have known my Father also; from this moment on you know him and have seen him.”+ — John 14:6, 7

One body+ there is, and one spirit,+ even as you were called in the one hope+ to which you were called; one Lord,+ one faith,+ one baptism;+ one God+ and Father of all [persons], who is over all and through all and in all. Now to each one of us undeserved kindness+ was given according to how the Christ measured out the free gift.”+ — Ephesians 4:4-7

For where there are two or three gathered together in my name,+ there I am in their midst.”+ — Matthew 18:20

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The Watchtower’s Christian Channel of Communication

TWELVE REQUIREMENTS FOR CHRISTIAN CHANNEL TODAY

What of Jehovah’s Christian channel of communication today? Which of the hundreds of sects and denominations of those who claim to be Christian is Jehovah’s spokesman today in the earth as his divinely appointed and organized channel of communication? The Bible indicates many specifications, all of which have to exist together to mark, beyond a shadow of doubt, the one divinely authorized channel. Following is a list of requirements to be met by such a true congregation of Christ to fit her as God’s channel today. Continue reading

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Keep Pace With Jehovah’s Organization

How do you feel when the faithful and discreet slave makes a change in the way we understand something in the Bible?

Sometimes the Governing Body, who represents the faithful and discreet slave, reviews how we understand certain truths. If these brothers decide that changes are necessary, they are not afraid to correct the way they explained some teachings in the past or to make their explanations clearer. They know that some will say bad things about the faithful and discreet slave because of these changes, but that is not the most important thing to them. The most important thing to them is that they cooperate with God’s purpose. How do you feel when the faithful and discreet slave makes a change in the way we understand something in the Bible?—Read Luke 5:39Watchtower July 15,2011 Simplified English Edition

“We need to obey the faithful and discreet slave to have Jehovah’s approval”

In modern times, there have been refinements in our understanding of certain Bible teachings. This should not trouble us; it should bolster our confidence in the faithful and discreet slave class. When representative members of the “slave” discern that our viewpoint on some point of truth needs to be clarified or corrected, they do not hold back from making the adjustment. The slave class is more interested in cooperating with God’s unfolding purpose than in shielding itself from criticism over an adjusted understanding. How do you react when an adjustment in our understanding of the Scriptures is presented?—Read Luke 5:39Watchtower July 15,2011 English

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Watchtower Questions for those Desiring to be Baptized (1983-2004)

Organized to Accomplish Our Ministry, P.175-218, 1983 ed

Part I – Elementary Bible Teachings

During your study of the Bible with Jehovah’s Witnesses you have become acquainted with the pattern of truth and very likely find it is quite different from what you formerly believed. What you have learned has brought you great spiritual refreshment and has no doubt set before you the hope of future life and blessings on a Paradise earth under God’s Kingdom. Your faith in his Word has been strengthened, and through association with his organized people you have come to appreciate how Jehovah is dealing with his chosen people today.

Now, as you prepare for water baptism in symbol of your personal dedication to Jehovah God, you will benefit from a review of elementary Bible teachings conducted by the congregation elders. If you do not understand some things so as to be able to give a reasonable answer to those who may ask or to persons you will approach in field service, the elders will kindly help you to improve your understanding.

Your desire should be in harmony with the words of the apostle Paul that we read at Hebrews 6:1-3: “For this reason, now that we have left the primary doctrine about Christ, let us press on to maturity, not laying a foundation again, namely, repentance from dead works, and faith toward God, … the laying on of the hands, the resurrection of the dead and everlasting judgment. And this we will do, if God indeed permits.”

May Jehovah continue to bless all your endeavors to take in knowledge of him, and may he grant you the promised reward.

The True God

(1) Who is the true God?
(2) What are some of Jehovah’s outstanding qualities?
(3) What does it mean to give Jehovah exclusive devotion?
(4) Why is he alone deserving?
(5) Why is it important for us to use God’s personal name in worship?
(6) How will Jehovah God sanctify his name?
(7) How can we have a share in it?
(8) Why would it be wrong for us to make an image of God or attempt to worship him through the use of images?
(9) Why should we endeavor to continue learning all we can about Jehovah?
(10) How can we do so?

Optional questions

(11) Has your study of the Bible caused you to reject certain teachings about God?
(12) What are they?
(13) Has the knowledge you now have about God moved you to want to serve him?
(14) What are you now doing to demonstrate your desire to serve Jehovah?
(15) What will you need to do in order to continue building your appreciation for Jehovah?

Jesus Christ and the Ransom

(16) Who is Jesus Christ?
(17) What is his position in relations to Jehovah God?
(18) Why did Jesus come to earth and die a sacrificial death?
(19) Why do we need the ransom?
(20) How does it affect you personally?
(21) How does Christ return and for what purpose?

Optional questions

(22) How is the ransom an expression of God’s love for mankind?
(23) In what way can you show appreciation for the ransom?

The Operation of the Holy Spirit

(24) What is the holy spirit and what has it accomplished as indicated by the following Bible texts?
(25) How does the holy spirit operate for our benefit today?
(26) Whose ideas are recorded in the Bible?
(27) Why should you regularly study God’s Word?

Optional questions

(28) Have you endeavored to read the entire Bible?
(29) Why would it be good for you to do so?
(30) When you have asked Jehovah to help you and direct you by holy spirit, why should you then endeavor to pay close attention to Bible-based counsel?

Prayer

(31) To whom should our prayers be directed?
(32) Does Jehovah listen to all prayers?
(33) Why do you so answer?
(34) What are some of the things you can pray about?

Optional questions

(35) When do you find time to pray?
(36) How can you keep your prayers from becoming routine?
(37) In your study of the Bible, what did you learn about prayer that you did not know previously?
(38) How has this affected your personal prayers to God?

The Kingdom of God

(39) By what right is Jehovah the Universal Sovereign?
(40) With whom has he shared rulership over his creation?
(41) Is the Kingdom of God a condition or a government?
(42) What blessings will Kingdom rule bring for the earth and for mankind?
(43) What does it mean to seek first the Kingdom?
(44) How do we know that we have entered into the time of the end and that God’s Kingdom is ruling?

Optional questions

(45) How do you personally endeavor to put God’s Kingdom first in your life?
(46) In what practical way can you demonstrate that you are a loyal advocate of God’s Kingdom?
(47) As a loyal advocate of God’s Kingdom, what is your attitude toward involvement in the political affairs of the nations?

Satan and the Demons

(48) Who is the Devil?
(49) Where did he and his demons come from?
(50) What warnings do we have in the Bible to help us avoid spiritistic practices?
(51) How can we protect ourselves from the influence of Satan and the Demons?
(52) What do God’s words to Pharaoh indicate as to His reason for allowing Satan and his demons to continue living until now?
(53) What will become of Satan and his demons according to Jehovah’s judgment against them?

Optional questions

(54) What influence does Satan have on people today?
(55) What are some of the spiritistic practices of people today, and why should we avoid these?

The Soul, Sin, and Death

(56) What is the human soul?
(57) Can it die?
(58) What is sin?
(59) How did we all become sinners?
(60) What should you do if you commit a sin?
(61) What should be our attitude toward committing sins?
(62) What is death?
(63) Why do people die?

Optional questions

(64) How have you benefited from learning what the Bible teaches about the soul, sin and death?
(65) What are some of the false religious doctrines that are disproved by what you have learned?
(66) In what way do false religious teachings about the soul dishonor God?

Resurrection

(67) What hope is there for one who dies?
(68) How many from among mankind will be raised to heavenly life with Jesus Christ?
(69) What will they do there?
(70) What is the hope for the rest of mankind that will also be resurrected?
(71) Who will not be resurrected, and why?
(72) Why should we hold firmly to our hope in the resurrection of the dead?

Optional questions

(73) Has learning about the resurrection hope enhanced your appreciation for Jehovah’s love?
(74) How so?
(75) Why should you want to tell others about the resurrection hope?

Marriage and Divorce

(76) What is the Christian standard for marriage?
(77) What is the only scriptural basis for divorce that frees one to remarry?
(78) What does the Bible say about married persons separating from each other?
(79) Why should persons living together as husband and wife be properly married?
Optional questions

(80) What benefits are derived from adhering to Jehovah’s standard for marriage as regards the husbands?
(81) The wife?
(82) The children?
(83) The community?
(84) If you are a married person, are you sure that your marriage has been properly registered with the civil authorities?

Sanctity of Life

(85) Why is all life to be viewed as sacred?
(86) How does Jehovah view the unlawful shedding of human blood?
(87) Abortion?
(88) Suicide?
(89) How do the following scriptures show that Jehovah considers blood as something sacred?
(90) What do the following scriptures reveal as to different ways a person culd become bloodguilty?

Optional questions

(91) How has the scriptural view of blood affected your thinking on this matter?
(92) As a Christian, what local foods or medical practices will you henceforth avoid?
(93) How does the Bible teaching concerning the sanctity of life affected your view of certain dangerous sports or types of recreation?
(94) Does God’s view of life and blood seem reasonable to you?
(95) What stand should a Christian take if he is told that in order to save his own life or the life of a loved one a blood transfusion would be needed?

PART II – JEHOVAH’S RIGHTEOUS REQUIREMENTS

In your study of the Bible you have learned the importance of bringing your life into harmony with Jehovah’s righteous standards, Responding to what you learned may have entailed a number of adjustments in your attitude toward life itself and in your personal conduct. Making such changes, however, is not what is referred to in the Bible as sacred service. Rather, Jehovah God accepts sacred service only from those whose lives have been made to reflect his righteousness.

Now that you have brought your life into harmony with Jehovah’s standard of righteousness, you are in a position to render sacred service as a minister of the good news. Reviewing the following questions along with the quoted and cited Scripture references will help you fix clearly in mind Jehovah’s righteous requirements and will remind you of some of the things you can do in order to become one of Jehovah’s approved servants. This information will impress upon you the importance of doing all things with a good conscience and to Jehovah’s honor.

Christian Law

(96) According to Jesus, what are the two greatest commandments of the Mosaic Law?
(97) Are Christians under the Mosaic Law covenant with its requirements of Sabbath-keeping and sacrifices?

Optional questions

(98) In what way do you demonstrate that you love Jehovah with your whole heart, mind, soul and strength?
(99) In what practical ways do you show that you love your neighbor as yourself?

Personal Relationships With Others

(100) What Christian quality should outstandingly characterize our relationship with our spiritual brothers and sisters?
(101) What Christian principles should govern our dealings with persons who are not Jehovah’s Witnesses?
(102) How should Christians view the shortcomings of fellow believers?
(103) If your brother sins against you personally and you find it difficult merely to overlook the transgression, or if his sin against you is of a serious nature and should not be covered over, what should you do?
(104) What is the fruitage of the spirit and how will cultivating it help us to maintain a fine relationship with others?

Optional questions No optional questions on this part

Elevated Christian Morals

(105) Why is moral cleanness of all individuals among Jehovah’s people important to every one of us?
(106) Why must lying be avoided?
(107) What is the Christian view of stealing?
(108) Does the Bible prohibit the use of alcoholic beverages in moderation?
(109) What is the Christian view of drunkenness?
(110) Why should Christians abstain from the nonmedical use of addictive or mind-altering drugs?
(111) What additional reasons are there for not using tobacco, betel nut or other similar addictive substances that are known to be harmful to physical and mental health?
(112) What does the Bible say about fornication, adultery, sexual relations with another person of the same sex (homosexuality) and other unlawful sexual conduct?
(113) By adhering to what the Bible counsel will you be able to ward off temptations and pressures that would induce you to engage in any form of sexual immorality, including sexual perversions?
(114) What is gambling?
(115) Why would a Christian avoid becoming involved in any form of gambling?
(116) If a person in weakness commits a serious sin but he wants help to be restored to Jehovah’s favor, what actions should he take immediately?
(117) In addition to confessing one’s own sins, what personal responsibility rests upon each Christian with regard to reporting serious wrongdoing by others that could threaten the spiritual or moral cleanness of the congregation?
(118) What is the proper viewpoint to have when one is Scripturally reproved?
(119) What action does the congregation take when a person in its midst proves to be a persistent and unrepentant violator of God’s commandments?

Optional questions

(120) Do you think that Jehovah’s moral standards and requirements for his servants are reasonable?
(121) How have you personally benefited from what you have learned about elevated Christian morals?
(122) Why would a person have to conform his way of life to Jehovah’s standards before he could be accepted for Christian baptism?

Idolatry

(123) What is idolatry?
(124) What warnings does the Bible give concerning idolatry?
(125) What are various forms of idolatry that Christians must guard against in this world?

[Optional questions No optional questions on this part

Separate From the World

(126) According to the Bible, who is “the ruler of the world” and “the god of this system of things.”?
(127) What is the position of Christians as to this world alienated from God?
(128) What was Jesus’ attitude toward participation in the political affairs of the world?
(129) When a person separates himself from the world and becomes a Christian, what treatment might he expect from those remaining in the world?
(130) How does being separate from the world affect the secular employment of a Christian?
(131) Adhering to what additional Bible principles will help a Christian to remain separate from the world with regard to his choice of entertainment and recreation?

Optional questions

(132) How has your study of the Bible helped you to keep yourself separate from the world?
(133) What pressures or enticements have you had to resist in order to come to a good relationship with Jehovah and maintain it?
(134) What Bible counsel have you found to be particularly helpful in maintaining separateness from the world?

Interfaith

(135) Would it be proper for true Christians to share in worship with other religious groups?

Optional questions

(136) What are some examples of interfaith activity that true Christians should avoid?
(137) Why would a person have to make sure that he has cut off all association with false religious before presenting himself for baptism as one of Jehovah’s Witnesses?
(138) What would this include?

Holidays and Celebrations

(139) Are Christians under obligation to observe certain days as holidays? Notice how this one is worded.
(140) What is the only religious celebration that Christians are commended to observe?
(141) What are some of the Bible principles that will help you to determine whether or not you should observe or participate in celebrations that are popular in your community?
(142) What mention is made in the Bible of birthday celebrations?
(143) How does this affect your view of birthday celebrations?

Optional questions

(144) What are some of the holidays or celebrations popular in your community that true Christians avoid?
(145) What do you need to do to keep from getting involved in worldly holidays or celebrations that run counter to Christian principles?
(146) If you have minor children, how can you help them avoid unchristian practices related to worldly holidays?

Baptism

(147) Why do Jehovah’s Witnesses baptize in water those who embrace the Christian faith?
(148) Who should be baptized?
(149) When?
(150) What does it mean to be baptized in the name of the Father?
(151) The Son?
(152) The holy spirit?

Optional questions

(153) Why do you want to be baptized?
(154) Have you already brought your life into harmony with Jehovah’s righteous requirements according to what you have learned from your study of the Bible?
(155) Are you at present sharing the good news of the Kingdom with others, demonstrating that you understand that this is Jehovah’s will for you at this time?
(156) Have you expressed to Jehovah in prayer your desire to be one of his dedicated Witnesses and to serve him in unity with his organized people?

PART III – SUBNISSION TO JEHOVAH’S ARRANGEMENT OF THINGS

While still in Eden the first man and woman joined the rebellion led by “the original serpent,” Satan the Devil. They ceased being submissive to Jehovah’s arrangement of things. Having been introduced to a course of independence from God, they set out on their own. From that time forward the course taken by mankind has only served to confirm the truthfulness of Jeremiah’s words recorded at Jeremiah 10:23, where we read: “I well know, O Jehovah, that to earthling man his way does not belong. It does not belong to man who is walking even to direct his step.”

Through your study of the Bible you have learned about Jehovah’s purpose to bring all things back into subjection to himself, just as they were in the beginning. Having reached this point in your study you are also desirous of finding your place in Jehovah’s arrangement of things and of being submissive to his rule. The following questions and related Scripture references will help you to examine your own understanding of submission to Jehovah’s arrangements as regards congregation organization, Christian family life and the political rulers of the day.

Submission in the Congregation Arrangement

(157) What is the basic principle underlying Jehovah’s arrangement of things within the Christian congregation?
(158) Why is there a particular need for submitting to Jehovah’s arrangement of things in the Christian congregation?
(159) What are some of the examples of Jesus’ disciples submitting to his instructions in order to carry out their ministry in an orderly way?
(160) How does Jesus exercise headship over the Christian congregation today?
(161) By what visible means is Christ’s headship represented in the congregation?
(162) How do members of the congregation demonstrate submission to the headship of Christ in the congregation?

Optional questions

(163) Are you able to identify “the faithful and discreet slave” today?
(164) How?
(165) What is the Governing Body of the Christian congregation?
(166) What purpose does it serve?
(167) What legal agencies are used by the Governing Body today to accomplish the publishing of the good news worldwide?
(168) Why would submitting to Jehovah’s arrangement in the congregation include giving material support to the work of the congregation to the extent of your ability?

Submission in Christian Family Life

(169) In God’s arrangement of things, who is the head of the married woman?
(170) How should a husband exercise headship over his wife?
(171) Whose example does he have to follow as a pattern?
(172) If the wife whose husband is not a believer freed from his headship?
(173) Who is responsible before God for the training and the disciplining of children?
(174) What responsibility do children have in the family arrangement?

Optional questions

(175) If you are a married woman, in what way can you demonstrate your submission to your husband?
(176) Does this seem to be righteous and just to you?
(177) If your husband does not appreciate your cooperation in this regard, how do you still benefit?
(178) If you are a man with family responsibilities, what worldly attitudes must you avoid if you are to exercise your headship in a Christlike manner?
(179) If you are a minor child, what benefits will come to you and your family as a result of your being submissive to your parents?
(180) What factors may make it difficult for you to be submissive at times?

Submission to Civil Authorities

(181) What is the proper attitude for Christians to maintain toward worldly rulers?
(182) Must a Christian pay all taxes and assessments demanded by law?
(183) Are there any circumstances under which a Christian would refuse to obey the worldly rulers?
(184) Should Christians comply with legal requirements such as the registering of marriages and births, respond to census inquiries or obtain required licenses and permits that do not conflict with God’s laws?

Optional questions

(185) Why is it important for you to be submissive to the civil authorities even when their rule may seem oppressive?
(186) How can you be submissive to the political rulers without violating Christian neutrality?

PART IV – WORKS THAT DEMONSTRATE CHRISTIAN FAITH

[There is some discussion, but I will add it in later]

Relationship Between Works and Faith

(187) Why must approved works accompany our Christian faith?

Optional questions

(188) In what way are Christian works different from works of the Law?
(189) Why would it not be proper for us to compare our works of faith with those of fellow believers?

Christian Meetings

(190) Why is it beneficial to attend the meetings arranged by the congregation?
(191) What is the proper attitude for us to have toward opportunities to meet together with our spiritual brothers and sisters?
(192) What information beneficial to Jehovah’s people is considered at congregation meetings?
(193) Whose teaching and instruction is given at the congregation meetings?
(194) Why should you endeavor to participate in congregation meetings by commenting and otherwise, as you have opportunity?
(195) Who should attend the congregation meetings in order to be instructed in righteousness?

Optional questions

(196) What effort have you personally put forth in order to be in regular attendance at congregation meetings?
(197) How have you benefited from regular association with Jehovah’s Witnesses at congregation meetings?
(198) Why is it beneficial for you to prepare well for each congregation meeting?
(199) How do you find time to do so?

Our Kingdom Ministry

(200) What urgent work does the Bible set out for all Christians as this time?
(201) According to the following scriptures, what are some of the various ways in which our ministry may be accomplished?
(202) Is this work done in our own strength?
(203) Why should you be willing to preach the good news to all kinds people in your assigned territory?
(204) Why should you take most seriously your responsibility to share the good news with others?

Optional questions

(205) Are you at present having a regular share each month in Kingdom service, preaching the good news to others?
(206) Is someone helping you and training you to be effective in the field ministry?
(207) Why is working from house to house in the field ministry so important?
(208) When you find a person who manifests genuine interest in the good news, what further assistance should you endeavor to give that person?
(209) While exerting yourself in the field ministry, why would it be wrong for you to make comparisons between your ministry and that of others?

Honoring Jehovah With Your Valuable Things?

(210) What pattern set in ancient Israel serves as a model for giving material support to the Kingdom work today?
(211) What lesson did Jesus teach about generous giving?
(212) What example of giving in support of the congregation was set by first-century Christians?
(213) Why must we be concerned about our brothers and sisters who come to be in need of material assistance?
(214) In addition to any material contributions to advance the good news, what should we offer that is even more important?
(215) What should be our attitude toward giving of ourselves and of our material possessions in Jehovah’s service?

Optional questions

(216) What are some of the needs of the local congregation that are taken care of by the voluntary contributions of the members of the congregation?
(217) How do contributions made directly to the nearest branch office of the Watch Tower Bible and tract Society assist in the advancement of the good news?
(218) Why should all contributions be made on a voluntary basis and not solicited or assessed?

Dedication and Baptism

(219) What should always be our attitude toward the doing of Jehovah’s will?
(220) Why should this joyful and willing attitude prevail even when we are persecuted or undergoing any form of trial?
(221) What does it mean for a person to dedicate himself to Jehovah?
(222) When a person has sincerely repented, turned around and made a decision to follow Christ, why should he be baptized?
(223) Why is it appropriate for dedicated and baptized Christians to be called Jehovah’s Witnesses?

Optional questions None for this part

CONCLUDING QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION

(224) Following your baptism in water, why will it be vital for you to maintain a good schedule for personal study and to share regularly in the ministry?
(225) How will staying in close association with the congregation help you to carry out your dedication to Jehovah?
(226) How will you go about proving to Jehovah that your dedication has been made in sincerity and from your heart?
(227) Are you now thoroughly convinced that you should be baptized at the first opportunity?

PART I

ELEMENTARY BIBLE TEACHINGS – Heb. 5: 11-6:3

During your study of the Bible with Jehovah’s Witnesses you have become acquainted with the pattern of truth and very likely find it is quite different from what you formerly believed. What you have learned has brought you great spiritual refreshment and has no doubt set before you the hope of future life and blessings on a Paradise earth under God’s Kingdom. Your faith in his Word has been strengthened, and through association with his organized people you have already experienced many blessings. You have come to appreciate how Jehovah is dealing with his chosen people today. -Zech. 8:23.

Now, as you prepare for water baptism in symbol of your personal dedication to Jehovah God, you will benefit from a review of elementary Bible teachings conducted by the congregation elders. If you do not understand some things so as to be able to give a reasonable answer to those who may ask or to persons you will approach in field service, the elders will kindly help you to improve Your understanding- I Pet. 3:15.

Your desire should be in harmony with the words of the apostle Paul that we read at Hebrews 6:1-3: “For this reason, now that we have left the primary doctrine about the Christ, let us press on to maturity, not laying a foundation again, namely, repentance from dead works, and faith toward God. . . . the laying on of the hands, the resurrection of the dead and everlasting judgment. And this we will do, if God indeed permits.”

May Jehovah continue to bless all your endeavors to take in knowledge of him, and may he grant you the promised reward.-John 17:3.

The True God

(1) Who is the true God?

You well know today, and you must call back to your heart that Jehovah is the true God in the heavens and on the earth beneath. There is no other.—Deut. 4: 39.

Jesus spoke these things, and, raising his eyes to heaven, he said: “Father…. this means everlasting life, their taking in knowledge of you, the only true God.”-John 17: 1-3.

This is what the true God, Jehovah, has said, “I am Jehovah. That is my name.”–Isa. 42:5, 8.

For even though there are those who are called “gods” whether in heaven or on earth, just as there are “gods” and many “lords,” there is actually to us one God the Father, out of whom all things are, and we for him; and there is one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom all are, and we through him-1 Cor. 8:5, 6.

Additional references: Deuteronomy 4:35; Psalm 8:1, Isaiah 43:10-12.

(2) What are some of Jehovah’s outstanding qualities?

God is love.-I John 4:8. The Rock, perfect is his activity, for all his ways are justice. A God of faithfulness, with whom there is no injustice; righteous and upright is he.-Deut. 32:4. 0 the depth of God’s riches and wisdom and knowledge! How unsearchable his judgments are and past tracing out his ways are!–Rom. 11:33. Alas, 0 Sovereign Lord Jehovah! Here you yourself made the heavens and the earth by your great power by your outstretched arm. The whole matter is not too wonderful for you yourselfJer. 32:17. Additional references: Exodus 34: 6; 2 Peter 3:9;3:12; Psalm 90:2 (3) What does it mean to give Jehovah exclusive devotion? Why is he alone deserving? Jesus said to him, [Satan]: “It is written, ‘It is Jehovah your God you must worship, and it is to him alone you must render sacred service.’ “-Luke 4:8, No one can slave for two masters; for either he will hate the ono and love the other, or he will stick to the one and despise the other. You cannot slave for God and for Riches. -Matt. 6:24. You are worthy, Jehovah, even our God, to receive the glory and the honor and the power, because you created all things, and because of your will they existed and were created.-Rev. 4:11. Additional references: Exodus 20:4, 5; Isaiah 33:22; 42:8; Acts 17:28. (4) Why is it important for us to use God’s personal name in worship? Everyone who calls on the name of Jehovah will be saved. -Rom. 10:13. For all the peoples, for their part, will walk each one in the name of its god; but we, for our part, shall walk in the name of Jehovah our God to time indefinite, even forever.-Mic. 4:5. Additional references: Exodus 20:7; Psalm 91:14; Isaiah 12:4, 5; Joel 2:32; Acts 15:14. (5) How will Jehovah God sanctify his name? How can we have a share in it? I shall certainly magnify myself and sanctify myself and make myself known before the eyes of many nations; and they will have to know that I am Jehovah.–Ezek. 38:23. 0 may they be ashamed and be disturbed for all times, and may they become abashed and perish; that people may know that you, whose name is Jehovah, you alone are the Most High over all the earth.-Ps. 83:17, 18. Be wise, my son, and make my heart rejoice, that I may make a reply to him that is taunting me.-Prov. 27:11. Additional references: Exodus 5:2; Psalm 2.2, 9; Ezekiel36:16-24; 1 Peter 2:12. (6) Why would it be wrong for us to make an image Of God or attempt to worship him through the use of images? You must not make for yourself a carved image, any form like anything that is in the heavens above or that is on the earth unde rneath or that is in the waters under the earth. You must not bow down to them or be led to serve them, because I Jehovah your God am a God exacting exclusive devotion.-Deut. 5:8, 9. You did not see any form on the day of Jehovah’s speaking to you in Horeb.-Deut. 4:15. God is a Spirit, and those worshiping him must worship with spirit and truth.-John 4:24. We are walking by faith, not by sight-2 Cor. 5: 7.. Additional references: Psalm 115:4-8; Isaiah 42:8; Acts 17:29. (7) Why should we endeavor to continue learning all we can about Jehovah? How can we do so? Become imitators of God, as beloved children.-Eph. 5: 1 God proceeded to create the man in his image, in his image he created him.-Gen. 1:27. If you men had known me, you would have known my Father also; from this moment on you know him and have seen him. . . . He that has seen me has seen the Father also.-John 14:7-9. His invisible qualities are clearly . . . perceived by the things made -Rom.1:20. Additional references: John 1:18; Exodus 33:13; Jereimiah 22:15, 16; 1 John 4:8; compare I John 2:3-6. Optional questions for discussion: (a) Has your stud the Bible caused you to reject certain false teachings about God? What are they? (b) Has the knowledge you now have about God moved you to want to serve him? What are you now doing to demonstrate your desire to serve Jehovah? (c) What will you need to do in order to continue building your appreciation for Jehovah? Jesus Christ and the Ransom (1) Who is Jesus Christ? Peter said: “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.”-Matt. 16:16. In the beginning the Word was, and the Word was God, and the Word was a god. This one was in the beginning with God. So the Word became flesh and resided among us and we had a view of his glory, a glory such as belongs to an only-begotten son from a father-John 1:1, 2, 14. Additional references: Luke 1:30-33; Colossians 1:1, Acts 2:36; 3:15; 5:31. (2) What is his position in relation to Jehovah God? I am going my way to the Father, because the Father is greater than I am.-John 14:28. There is one God, and one mediator between God and men, a man, Christ Jesus.-I Tim. 2:5. Additional references: Philippians 2:5-11; John 14:10, 11;1 Corinthians 11:3. (3) Why did Jesus come to earth and die a sacrificial death? The Son of man came, not to be ministered to, but to minister and to give his soul a ransom in exchange for many.-Matt. 20:28. He beheld Jesus coming toward him, and he said: “See, the Lamb of God that takes away the sin of the world!” -John 1:29. Additional references: Hebrews 2:9, 14, 15; John 3:16;18:37. (4) Why do we need the ransom? How does it affect you personally? Through one man sin entered into the world and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men because they had all sinned.-Rom. 5:12. By means of him we have the release by ransom through the blood of that one, yes, the forgiveness of our trespasses.-Eph. 1:7. Just as in Adam all are dying, so also in the Christ all will be made alive -1 Cor. 15:22. For the love the Christ has compels us, because this is what we have judged, that one man died for all; so, then, all had died; and he died for all that those who live might live no longer for themselves, but for him who died for them and was raised up-2 Cor. 5:14, 15. Additional references: Romans 3:23; Psalm 51:5; Galatians 1:4; 1 John 4:11. (5) How does Christ return and for what purpose? The Son of man is destined to come in the glory of his Father with his angels, and then he will recompense each one according to his behavior.-Matt. 16:27. When the Son of man arrives in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit down on his glorious throne.-Matt. 25:31. The utterance of Jehovah to my Lord is: “Sit at mv right hand until I place your enemies as a stool for you-r feet.” The rod of your strength Jehovah will send oul Zion, saying: “Go subduing in the midst of your enemi, -Ps. 110:1, 2. Additional references: I Peter 3:18; Daniel 7:13, 14; 2 Thessalonians 1:7-10; Luke 23:42, 43.Optional questions for discussion: (a) How is the ransom an expression of God’s love for mankind? (b) In what can you show your appreciation for the ransom? The Operation of Holy Spirit (1) What is the holy spirit and what has it ac@ complished as indicated by the following Bible texts? God’s active force was moving to and fro over the surface of the waters.-Gen. 1:2; compare Psalm 33:6 and 104:11 The spirit of Jehovah it was that spoke by me, and word was upon my tongue-2 Sam. 23:2; compare 2 Timothy 3:16 and 2 Peter 1:20, 21. But if it is by means of God’s spirit that I expel the demons, the kingdom of God has really overtaken you.-Matt. 12:28. They all became filled with holy spirit and started to speak with different tongues, just as the spirit was granting them to make utterance.-Acts 2:4. Additional references: Isaiah 61:1, 2; Acts 1:8; Revelation 1.10. (2) How does holy spirit operate for our benefit today? If you, although being wicked, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more so will the Father in heaven give holy spirit to those asking him!-Luke 11: 1 Teach me to do your will, for you are my God. Your spirit is good; may it lead me in the land of uprightness. -Ps. 143:10. All Scripture is inspired of God and beneficial for teaching, for reproving, for setting things straight, for disciplining in righteousness. – 2 Tim. 3:16. Pay attention to yourselves and to all the flock, among which the holy spirit has appointed you overseers, to shepherd the congregation of God.-Acts 20:28. Additional references: John 14:26; Matthew 10:19, 20 Philippians 4:13; Joel 2:28, 29. (3) Whose ideas are recorded in the Bible? Why should you regularly study God’s Word? That is why we also thank God incessantly, because when you received God’s word, which you heard from us, you accepted it, not as the word of men, but, just as it truthfully is, as the word of God, which is also at work in you believers.-I Thess. 2:13. Now the latter were more noble-minded than those in Thessalonica, for they received the word with the greatest eagerness of mind, carefully examining the Scriptures daily as to whether these things were so.-Acts 17:11. Additional references: Psalm 1:1-3; 119:105; 1 Timothy 4:13-16; John 17:17. Optional questions for discussion: (a) Have you endeavored to read the entire Bible? Why would it be good for you to do so? (b) When you have asked Jehovah to help you and direct you by holy spirit, why should you then endeavor to pay close attention to Bible-based counsel? Prayer (1) To whom should our prayers be directed? You must pray, then, this way: “Our Father in the heavens . . . “-Matt. 6:9. In everything by prayer and supplication along with thanksgiving le t your petitions be made known to God. -Phil. 4:6. Additional references: Psalm 5:1, 2; 65:1, 2; 69:13. (2) Does Jehovah listen to all prayers? Why do you so answer? If you ask the Father for anything he will give it to you in my name.-John 16:23. When you pray, you must not be as the hypocrites; because they like to pray … to be visible to men.-Matt. 6:5. The eyes of Jehovah are upon the righteous ones, and his ears are toward their supplication.- I Pet. 3:12. Additional references: Acts 10:30, 34, 35; Micah 3:4; Proverbs 28:9; Matthew 6:6-8. (3) What are some of the things you can pray about? Let your name be sanctified. Let your kingdom come. Let your will take place, as in heaven, also upon earth. Give us today our bread for this day; and forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And do not bring us into temptation, but deliver us from the wicked one.- Matt. 6:9-13 No matter what it is that we ask according to his will, he hears us.-I John 5:14. Additional references: Philippians 1:9; Acts 12:5; James 5:16. Optional questions for discussion: (a) When do you find time to pray? (b) How can you keep your prayers from becoming routine? (c) In your study of the Bible, what did learn about prayer that you did not know previously? has this affected your personal prayers to God? The Kingdom of God (1) By what right is Jehovah the Universal Sovereign? Upon hearing this they with one accord raised their voice to God and said: “Sovereign Lord, you are the One who made the he aven and the earth and the sea and all the things in them.”- Acts 4:24. You are worthy, Jehovah, even our God, to receive the glory and the honor and the power, because you created all things, and because of your will they existed and were created.-Rev. 4:11.Additional references: Psalm 90:2; 100:3; Hebrews 3: 4. (2) With whom has he shared rulership over his creation? Someone like a son of man happened to be coming; and to the Ancient of Days he gained access, and they brought him up close even before that One. And to him there was given rulership and dignity and kingdom.-Dan. 7:13, 1 1 The utterance of Jehovah to my Lord is: “Sit at my right hand until I place your enemies as a stool for your feet.” The rod of your strength Jehovah will send out of Zion, saying: “Go subduing in the midst of your enemies. -Ps. 110:1, 2. However, you are the ones that have stuck with me in my trials; and I make a covenant with you, just as my Father has made a covenant with me, for a kingdom, that you may eat and drink at my table in my kingdom, and sit on thrones to judge the twelve tribes of Israel.-Luke 22:28-30. Additional references: Revelation 5:9, 10; 14:1. (3) Is the Kingdom of God a condition or a government? In the days of those kings the God of heaven will set up a kingdorn that will never be brought to ruin. And the kingdom itself will not be passed on to any other people. It will crush and put an end to all these kingdoms; and it itself will stand to times indefinite. -Dan. 2:44. The very One itting in the heavens will laugh; Jehovah hirnself will hold them in derision. At that time he will speak to them in his anger and in his hot displeasure he will disturb them, saying: “I, even 1, have installed my king upon Zion, my holy mountain.”-Ps. 2:4-6. My kingdom is no part of this world. If my kingdom were part of this world, my attendants would have fought that I should not be delivered up to the Jews. But, as it is, my kingdom is not from this source.-John 18:36. Additional references: Isaiah 9:7; Luke 1:32, 33; Revelation 20:6. (4) What blessings will Kingdom rule bring for the earth and for mankind? And he will wipe out every tear from their eves, and death will be no more, neither will mourning nor outcry nor pain be anymore. The former things have passed away. -Rev. 21:4. The sucking child will certainly play upon the hole of the cobra; and upon the light aperture of a poisonous snake will a weaned child actually put his own hand. They will not do any harm or cause any ruin in all my holy mountain. -Isa. 11:8, 9. Additional references: Isaiah 26:9; 65:21, 22; Luke 23:43. (5) What does it mean to seek first the Kingdom? Stop storing up for yourselves treasures upon the earth . . .Rather, store up for yourselves treasures in heaven . . . No one can slave for two masters . . . You cannot slave for God and for Riches…. So never be anxious and say, “What are we to eat?” or, “What are we to drink?” or, “What are we to put on?” For all these are the things the nations are eagerly pursuing.-Matt. 6:19-32. Let us also put off every weight and the sin that easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, as we look intently at the Chief Agent and Perfecter of our faith, Jesus.-Heb. 12:1, 2. Additional references: Matthew 1-3:44-46; 16:24; 19:27-29. (6) How do we know that we have entered into the time of the end and that God’s Kingdom is ruling? While he was sitting upon the Mount of Olives, the disciPpes approached him privately, saying: “Tell us, When will these things be, and what will be the sign of your presence and of the conclusion of the system of things? “–Matt. 24:3. Now learn from the fig tree as an illustration this point: Just as soon as its young branch grows tender and it puts forth leaves, you know that summer is near. Liikewise, also you, when you see all these things, know that he is near at the doors. Truly I say to you that this generation will by no means pass away until all these things occur- Matt. 24:32-34. The rod of your strength Jehovah will send out of saying: “Go subduing in the midst of your enemies.” Ps.110:2. Additional references: Revelation 6:1-6; 12:1-12; Matt.24:1-25:46; 2 Timothy 3:1-5. Optional questions for discussion: (a) How do you personally endeavor to put God’s Kingdom first in your life? (b) In what practical ways can you demonstrate that you are a loyal advocate of God’s Kingdom? (c) As a loyal advocate of God’s Kingdom, what is your attitude toward involvement in the political affairs of the nations? Satan and the Demons (1) Who is Satan the Devil? Where did he and demons come from? So down the great dragon was hurled, the original serpent, the one called Devil and Satan, who is misleading the entire inhabited earth.-Rev. 12:9; compare Genesis :3: 1-5. That one was a manslayer when he began, and he did not stand fast in the truth, because truth is not in him. When he speaks the lie, he speaks according to his disposition, because he is a liar and the father of the lie -John 8:44. And the angels that did not keep their original position, but forsook their own proper dwelling place he has reserved with eternal bonds under dense darkness for the judgement of the great day.-Jude 6. Additional references: Job 1:6; 2:1; James 1:14, 15; Ephesians 6:11, 12; compare Ezekiel 28:12-15. (2) What warnings do we have in the Bible to help us avoid spiritistic practices?There should not be found in you anyone who … employs divination, a practicer of magic or anyone who looks for omens or a sorcerer, or one who binds others with a spell or anyone who consults a spirit medium or a professional foreteller of events or anyone who inquires of them. – Deut. 18:10, 11. But as for . . . those practicing spiritism …, their portion will be in the lake that burns with fire and tsulphur. This means the second death.-Rev. 21:8. Additional references: Acts 16:16-18; Galatians 5:19, 20. (3) How can we protect ourselves against the influences of Satan and the demons? Subject yourselves, therefore, to God; but oppose the Devil, and he will flee from you.-Jas, 4:7. Put on the complete suit of armor from God that you may be able to stand firm against the machinations of the Devil.-Eph. 6:11. Additional references: Matthew 6:13; Proverbs 18:10; Acts19:19, 20. (4) What do God’s words to Pharaoh indicate as to His reason for allowing Satan and his demons to continue living until now? For by now I could have thrust my hand out that I might strike you and your people with pestilence and that you might be effaced from the earth. But, in fact, for this cause I have kept you in existence, for the sake of showing you my power and in order to have my name declared in all the earth-Ex. 9:15, 16. Additional references: Romans 9:14-18; Job 1:9-12; 2:4-6; 2 Peter 3:9, 15. (5) What will become of Satan and his demons according to Jehovah’s judgment against them? I shall put enmity between you and the woman and between your seed and her seed. He will bruise you in the head and you will bruise him in the heel.-Gen. 3:15. Therefore, since the “young children” are sharers of blood and flesh, he also similarly partook of the same things, that through his death he might bring to nothing the one having the means to cause death, that is, the Devil.-Heb. 2:14. And the Devil who was misleading them was hurled into the lake of fire and sulphur, where both the wild beast and the false prophet already were.-Rev. 20:10. Additional references: Romans 16:20; Revelation 12:7-9; 20:1-3, 7-10. Optional questions for discussion: (a) What influence does Satan have on people today? (b) What are some of the spiritistic practices of people today, and why should we avoid these? The Soul, Sin and Death (1) What is the human soul? Can it die? Jehovah God proceeded to form the man out of dust from the ground and to blow into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man came to be a living soul.-Gen. 2:7. Look! All the souls-to me they belong. As the soul of the father so likekvise the soul of the son-to me they belong. The soul that is sinning-it itself will die.-Ezek. 18: 4, 20. Additional references: I Corinthians 15:45; Acts. 3: 23; Matthew 10:28. (2) What is sin? How did we all become sinners? Everyone who practices sin is also practicing lawlessness,and so sin is lawlessness-1 John 3:1. Through one man sin entered into the world and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men becausethey had all sinned.-Rom. 5:12. Additional references: Romans 3:23; 1 John 1:8; 1 Kings 8:46; Psalm 51:5. (3) What should you do if you commit a sin? My sin I finally confessed to you, and my error I did not cover. I said: “I shall make confession over my transgressions to Jehovah.”-Ps. 32:5. Is there anyone sick among you? Let him call the older men of the congregation to him, and let them pray him, greasing him with oil in the name of Jehovah. And the prayer of faith will make the indisposed one well, and Jehovah will raise him up. Also, if he has committed sins, it will be forgiven him. Therefore openly confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may get healed. A righteous man’s supplication, when it is at work, has much force. -Jas. 5:11-16. He that is covering over his transgressions will not succeed, but he that is confessing and leaving them will shown mercy. -Prov. 28:13. Additional references: Daniel 9:20; 1 John 1:9. (4) What should be our attitude toward committing sins? Do not let sin continue to rule as king in your mortal bodies that you should obey their desires. Neither go on presenting your members to sin as weapons of unrighteousness, but present yourselves to God as those alive from the dead, also your members to God as weapons of righteousness. For sin must not be master ove r you, seeing that you are not under law but under undeserved kindness. -Rom. 6:12-14. Additional reference: Romans 7:11-25. (5) What is death? The living are conscious that they will die; but as for the dead, they are conscious of nothing at all, neither do they anymore have wages, because the remembrance of them has been forgotten-Eccl. 9:5, 10.He said to them: “Lazarus our friend has gone to rest, but I am journeying there to awaken him from sleep.” Therefore the disciples said to him: “Lord, if he has gone to rest, he will get well.” Jesus had spoken, however, about his death. But they imagined he was speaking about taking rest in sleep. At that time, therefore, Jesus said to them outspokenly: “Lazarus has died.”-John 11:11-14. Additional references: Genesis 3:19; Psalm 6:5); 146:1; Ecclesiastes 3:19, 20; Isaiah 38:18. (6) Why do people die? The wages sin pays is death.-Rom. 6:23. In Adam all are dying.-I Cor. 15:22. Additional references: Romans 5:12, 17, 19; Job 14:1, 4. Optional questions for discussion: (a) How have you benefited from learning what the Bible teaches about the soul, sin and death? (b) What are some of the false religious doctrines that are disproved by what you have learned? (c) In what way do false religious teachings about the soul dishonor God? Resurrection (1) What hope is there for one who dies? I have hope toward God, which hope these men themselves also entertain, that there is going to be a resurrection of both the righteous and the unrighteous. -Acts 24:15. Do not marvel at this, because the hour is coming in which all those in the memorial tombs will hear his voice and come out, those who did good things to a resurrection of life, those who practiced vile things to a resurrection of judgment.-John 5:28, 29. Additional references: Acts 17:31; Revelation 20:13; Isaiah 25:8. (2) How many from among mankind will be raised to heavenly life with Jesus Christ? I saw, and, look! the Lamb standing upon the Mount Zion, and with him a hundred and forty-four thousand having his name and the name of his Father written on their foreheads. And they are singing as if a new song before the throne and before the four living creatures and the elders; and no one was able to master that song but the hundred and forty-four thousand, who have been bought from earth.-Rev. 14:1, 3. Additional references: Revelation 7:1-8; compare 12:32. (3) What will they do there? You made them to be a kingdom and priests to our God, and they are to rule as kings over the earth.-Rev. I saw thrones, and there were those who sat down on them, and power of judging was given them . . . . . and they came to life and ruled as kings with the Christ for a thousand years. Happy and holy is anyone having part in the first resurrection; over these the second death has no authority, but they will be priests of God and of the Christ, and will rule as kings with him for the thousand years.-Rev. 20:4, 6. Additional reference: I Corinthians 6:3. (4) What is the hope for the rest of mankind that will also be resurrected? And he went on to say: “Jesus, remember me when you get into your kingdom.” And he said to him: “Truly I tell you today, You will be with me in Paradise.”- Luke 23:42, 43. I saw the dead, the great and the small, standing before the throne, and scrolls were opened. But another scroll was opened; it is the scroll of life. And the dead were judged out of those things written in the scrolls according to their deeds. And the sea gave up those dead in it, and de ath and Hades gave up those dead in them, and they were judged individually according to their deeds.-Rev. 20:12, 13. Additional references: Isaiah 65:17, 20; Revelation 21 (5) Who will not be resurrected, and why? Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! because you traverse sea and dry land to make one proselyte, and when he becomes one you make him a subject for Gehenna twice as much so ass yourselves. Serpents, offspring of vipers, how are you to flee from the judgment of Gehenna?-Matt. 23:15, 33. When the Son of man arrives in his glory. . . . Separate people one from another, just as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. And he will put the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on his left . . . . . Then he will say, in turn, to those on his left, “Be on your way from me, you who have been cursed, into the everlasting fire prepared for the Devil and his angels.” . . . And these will depart into everlasting cutting-off. -Matt. 25:31-46. Additional references: 2 Peter 3:5-7; Jude 8-13. (6) Why should we hold firmly to our hope, in the resurrection of the dead? If in this life only we have hoped in Christ, we are of all men most to be pitied. If, like men, I have fought with wild beasts at Ephesus, of what good is it to me? If the dead are not to be raised up, “let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we are to die.”-1 Cor. 15:19, 32. And do not become fearful of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul; but rather be in fear of him that can destroy both soul and body in Gehenna.-Matt. 10:28. Additional references: Hebrews 2:14, 15; 11:17-19. optional questions for discussion: (a) Has learning about the resurrection hope enhanced your appreciation for Jehovah’s love? How so? (b) Why should you want to tell others about the resurrection hope? Marriage and Divorce (1) What is the Christian standard for marriage? In reply he said: “Did you not read that he who created them from the beginning made them male and female and said, ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and his mother and will stick to his wife, and the two will be one flesh’? So that they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore, what God has yoked together let no man put apart.”-Matt. 19:4-6. Additional references: 1 Timothy 3:2, 12; Genesis 2:24; 1 Corinthians 7:2. (2) What is the only Scriptural basis for divorce that frees one to remarry? I say to you that whoever divorces his wife, except on the ground of fornication, and marries another commits adultery.-Matt. 19:9. Additional refe rences: Mark 10:11, 12; Matthew 5:32; Luke 16:18. (3) What does the Bible say about married persons separating from each other? Therefore what God yoked together let no man put apart. -Mark 10:9. To the married people I give instructions, yet not I but the Lord, that a wife should not depart from her husband and a husband should not leave his wife.-I Cor. 7:10, 11, Additional references: I Corinthians 7:4, 5, 12-16. (4) Why should persons living together as husband and wife be properly married? Continue reminding them to be be in subjection and be obedient to governments and authorities as rulers. Titus 3: 1. Additional references: Matthew 22:21; Luke 2:1; Hebrews 13:4. Optional questions for discussion: (a) What benetits are derived from adhering to Jehovah’s standard for marriage as regards the husband? the wife? the children? the commmunity? (b) If you are a married person, are you sure that your marriage has been properly registered with the civil authorities? Sanctity of Life (1) Why is all life to be viewed as sacred? The God that made the world . . . gives to all persons life and breath and all things. For by him we have life and move and exist.-Acts 17:24, 25, 28, Christ Jesus . . . gave himself a corresponding ransom for all.-I Tim. 2:5, 6. Additional reference: Psalm 36:9. (2) How does Jehovah view (a) the unlawful shedding of human blood? (b) abortion? (c) suicide? Anyone shedding man’s blood, by man will his own blood be shed.-Gen. 9:6.But as for the … murderers…, their portion will be in the lake that burns with fire and sulphur. This is the second death.-Rev. 21:8. And in case men should struggle with each other and they really hurt a pregnant woman and her children do come out but no fatal accident occurs, he is to have damages imposed…. But if a fatal accident should occuur, you must give soul for soul.-Ex. 21:22, 23. Look! All the souls-to me they belong. As the the father so likewise the soul of the son-to me they belong. – Ezek. 18: 4. Additional references: Numbers 35:31; 2 Samuel Matthew 27:3-5. 3) How do the following scriptures show that Jehovah considers blood as something sacred? Only flesh with its soul-its blood-you must not eat. -Gen. 9:4. Whenever your soul craves it you may slaughter, and you must eat meat according to the blessing of Jehovah your God . . . Only the blood you must not eat. On the earth you should pour it out as water.-Deut. 12:15, 16. Any soul who eats any blood, that soul must be cut off from his people.-Lev. 7:27, Keep abstaining from things sacrificed to idols and from blood and from things strangled. — Acts 15:29, Additional references: Leviticus 17:11; 1 Chronicles 11:18,19; 1 Samuel 14:31-34; Romans 5:9. (4) What do the following scriptures reveal as to different ways a person could become bloodguilty? When I say to someone wicked, “You will positively die,” and you do not actually warn him . . . , his blood I shall ask back from your own hand.-Ezek. 3:18, 19. In case you build a new house, you must also make a parapet for your roof, that you may not place bloodguilt upon your house because someone falling might fall from it.-Deut. 22:8. Additional references: Acts 20:26, 27; 1 Corinthians 9:16. Optional questios for discussion: (a) How has the Scriptural view of blood affected your thinking on this matter? (b) As a Christian, what local foods or medical practices will you henceforth avoid? (c) How does the Bible teaching concerning the sanctity of life affect your view of certain dangerous sports or types of recreation? (d) Does God’s view of life and blood seem reasonable to you? (e) What stand should a Christian take if he is told that in order to save his own life or the life of a loved one a blood transfusion would be needed? PART 11 JEHOVAH’S RIGHTEOUS REQUIREMENTS-Mic. 6:8 In your study of the Bible you have learned the importance of bringing your life into harmony with Jehovah’s righteous standards. Responding to what you learned may have entailed a number of adjustments in your attitude toward life itself and in your personal conduct. Making such changes, however, is not what is referred to in the Bible as sacred service. Rather, Jehovah God accepts sacred service only from those whose lives have been made to reflect his righteousness. — 1 P(,I 14-16; Isa. 52:11. Now that you have brought your life into harmony with Jehovah’s standard of righteousness, you are in a position to render acceptable sacred service as a minister of the good news. Reviewing the following questions along with the quoted and cited Scripture references will help you fix clearly in mind Jehovah’s righteous requirements and will remind you of some of the things you can do in order to become one of Jehovah’s approved servants. This information will impress upon you the importance of doing all things with a good conscience and to Jehovah’s honor-2 Cor. I: 12; 1 Tim. 1:19; 1 Pet. 3:16, 21. Christian Law (1) According to Jesus, what are the two greatest commandments of the Mosaic Law? “You must love Jehovah your God with your whole and with your whole soul and with your whole mind.” This is the greatest and first commandment. The second, like it, is this, “You must love your neighbor as yourself.”- Matt. 22: 37-39. (2) Are Christians under the Mosaic Law covenant with its requirements of Sabbathkeeping and sacrifices? Christ is the end of the Law, so that everyone exercising faith may have righteousness.-Rom. 10:4. Let no man judge you in eating and drinking or in respect of a festival or of an observance of the new moon or of a sabbath; for those things are a shadow of the things to come, but the reality belongs to the Christ.-Col. 2:16, 17. Additional references: Galatians 3:24, 25; Colossions 14; Hebrews 8:6, 13. 0ptional questions for discussion: (a) In what way do you demonstrate that you love Jehovah with your whole mind, soul and strength? (b) In what practical ways do you show that you love your neighbor as yourself? Personal Relationships With Others (1) What Christian quality should outstandingly characterize our relationship with our spiritual brothers and sisters?I am giving you a new commandment, that you love one another; just as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all will know that you are my disciples, if you have love among yourselves. -John 13:34, 35. Clothe yourselves with love, for it is a perfect bond of union.-Col. 3:14. Additional references: James 2:8; 1 Corinthians 13:4-7. (2) What Christian principles should govern our dealings with persons who are not Jehovah’s Witnesses? Just as you want men to do to you, do the same way to them.-Luke 6:31. As long as we have time favorable for it, let us work what is good toward all.-Gal. 6:10. Additional references: Matthew 5:43-48; Romans 12:17,18; Luke 10:29-37. (3) How should Christians view the shortcomings of fellow believers? Continue putting up with one another and forgiving one another freely if anyone has a cause for complaint against another. Even as Jehovah freely forgave you, so do you also.-Col. 3:13. Above all things, have intense love for one another, because love covers a multitude of sins-1 Pet. 4:8. Additional references: Matthew 7:1-5; Proverbs 17:9; 19:11; Matthew 6:12. (4) If your brother sins against you personally and you find it difficult merely to overlook the transgression, or if his sin against you is of a serious nature and should not be covered over, what should you do? Moreover, if your brother commits a sin, go lay bare his fault between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have gained your brother. But if he does not listen, take along with you one or two more, in order that at the mouth Of two or three witnesses every matter may be established. If he does not listen to them, speak to the congregation. If he does not listen even to the congregation, let him be to you just as a man of the nations and as a tax collector. -Matt. 18:15-17. Additional references: Matthew 5:23, 24; Ephesians 4:25. 5) What is the fruitage of the spirit and how will cultivating it help us to maintain a fine relationship with others? The fruitage of the spirit is love, joy, peace, long-suffering, kindness, goodness, faith, mildness, self-control. –Gal 5: 22, 23. Additional reference: James 3:17, 18. Elevated Christian Morals (1) Why is moral cleanness of all individuals among Jehovah’s people important to every one of us?Many will follow their acts of loose conduct, and on account of these the way of the truth will be spoken of abusively-2 Pet. 2:2. Beloved ones, though I was making every effort to write you about the salvation we hold in common, I found it necessary to write you to exhort you to put up a hard fight for the faith that was once for all time delivered to the holy ones. My reason is that certain men have slipped in who have long ago been appointed by the Scriptures to this judgment, ungodly men, turning the undeserved kindness of our God into an excuse for loose conduct and proving false to our only Owner and Lord, Jesus Christ.-Jude 3, 4. Additional references: Romans 1:32; 1 Peter 1:16; Joshua 7:1-26. (2) Why must lying be avoided? The Devil … did not stand fast in the truth, because truth is not in him. When he speaks the lie, he speaks according to his own disposition, because he is a liar and the father of the lie.- John 8:44. As for … all the liars, their portion will be in the lake that burns with fire and sulphur.-Rev. 21:8. Additional references: Exodus 20:16; Proverbs 6: 12-19; 2 Corinthians 6:4, 7. (3) What is the Christian view of stealing? Let none of you suffer as a murderer or a thief. I Peter 4:15. Let the stealer steal no more, but rather let him do hard work, doing with his hands what is good work, that he have something to distribute to someone in need.—Eph. 4: 28. 4) Does the Bible prohibit the use of alcoholic beverages in moderation? Go, eat your food with rejoicing and drink your wine with a good heart, because already the true God has found pleasure in your works.-Ececl. 9:7. Additional references: Psalm 104:15; 1 Timothy 5:23. (5) What is the Christian view of drunkenness? What! Do you not know that unrighteous persons will not inherit God’s kingdom? Do not be misled. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers. . . . nor greedy persons, nor drunkards … will inherit God’s kingdom-1 Cor. 6:9, 10. Ministerial servants should likewise be serious. . . . not giving themselves to a lot of wine.-1 Tim. 3:8. Additional references: 1 Corinthians 5:11; 1 Peter 4:3;1 Timothy 3:2, 3. (6) Why should Christians abstain from the nonmedical use of addictive or mind-altering drugs?Consequently I entreat you by the compassions of God, brothers, to present your bodies a sacrifice living, holy, acceptable to God, a sacred service with your power of reason. And quit being fashioned after this system of things, but be transformed by making your mind over, that you may prove to yourselves the good and acceptable and perfect will of God.-Rom. 12:1, 2. Additional references: Revelation 21:8, Int; 1 Corinthians16:13; Proverbs 3:21-23; 5:1, 2; 1 Peter 4:7. (7) What additional reasons are there for not using tobacco, betel nut or other similar addictive substances that are known to be harmful to physical and mental health? Therefore, since we have these promises, beloved ones, let us cleanse ourselves of every defilement of flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in God’s fear.-2 Cor. 7:1. Additional references: James 1:21; 1 Peter 1:16. (8) What does the Bible say about fornication, adultery, sexual relations with another person of the same sex (homosexuality) and other unlawful sexual conduct? Now the works of the flesh are manifest, and they are fornication, uncleanness, loose conduct … Those who practice such things will not inherit God’s kingdom.-Gal. 5:19-21. What! Do you not know that unrighteous persons will not inherit God’s kingdom? Do not be misled. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men kept for unnatural purposes, nor men who lie with men … will inherit God’s kingdom-1 Cor. 6:9-11. God gave them up to disgraceful sexual appetites, for both their females changed the natural use of thernselves one contrary to nature; and likewise even the males left the natural use of the female and became violently inflamed in their lust toward one another, males with males, working what is obscene and receiving in themselves the full recompense, which was due for their error.-Rom. 1:26, 27. Let marriage be honorable among all, and the marriage bed be without defilement, for God will judge fornicators and adulterers. -Heb. 13:4. Additional references: Ephesians 5:5; 1 Peter 4:3; Mark 7:20-23; Revelation 21:8. (9) By adhering to what Bible counsel will you be able to ward off temptations and pressures that would induce you to engage in any form of sexual immorality, including sexual perversions? Keep your minds fixed on the things above, not on things upon the earth. Deaden, therefore, your body members that are upon the earth as respects fornication, uncleanness, sexual appetite, hurtful desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry.-Col. 3:2, 5. Finally, brothers, whatever things are true, whatever things are of serious concern, whatever things are righteous, whatever things are chaste, whatever things are lovable, whatever things are well spoken of, whatever virtue there is and whatever praiseworthy thing there is, continue considering these things.-Phil. 4:8. Additional references: Romans 12:2; Ephesians 4:22-2 Colossians 3:9, 10.(10) What is gambling? Why would a Christian avoid becoming involved in any form of gambling? But you men are those leaving Jehovah, those forgetting my holy mountain, those setting in order a table for the god of Good Luck and those filling up mixed wine for the god Destiny.-Isa. 65:11. Do you not know that unrighteous persons will not inherit God’s kingdom? Do not be misled. Neither … thieves, nor greedy persons . . . will inherit God’s kingdorn.-l Cor. 9, 10. Additional references: I Corinthians 5:11; 15:33. (11) If a person in weakness commits a serious sin but he wants help to be restored to Jehovah’s favor, what action should he take immediately? My sin I finally confessed to you, and my error I did not cover. I said: “I shall make confession over my transgressions to Jehovah.”-Ps. 32:5. Is there anyone suffering evil among you? Let him carry on prayer. Is there anyone in good spirits? Let him sing psalms. Is there anyone sick among you? Let him call the olde r men of the congregation to him, and let them pray over him, greasing him with oil in the name of Jehovah. And the prayer of faith will make the indisposed one well, and Jehovah will raise him up. Also, if he has committed sins, it will be forgiven him.-Jas. 5:13-15. Additional references: Proverbs 28:13; 1 John 2:1, 2; Galatians 6: 1. (12) in addition to confessing one’s own sins, what personal responsibility rests upon each Christian with regard to reporting serious wrongdoing by others that could threaten the spiritual or moral cleanness of the congregation? Now in case a soul sins in that he has heard public cursing and he is a witness or he has seen it or has come to know of it, if he does not report it, then he must answer for his error.- Lev. 5:1. He that is partner with a thief is hating his own soul. An oath involving a curse he may hear, but he reports nothing. -Prov. 29:24. Additional references: Deuteronomy 13:6-8; 1 Corinthians1:11; 5:1. (13) What is the proper viewpoint to have when one is Scripturally reproved? The discipline of Jehovah, 0 my son, do not reject; and do not abhor his reproof-Prov. 3:11. For the commandment is a lamp, and a light the law is, and the reproofs of discipline are the way of life.-Prov. 6:23. Additional references: Proverbs 15:32; Revelation 3:19; Hebrews 12:5-11. (14) What action does the congregation take when a person in its midst proves to be a persistent and unrepentant violator of God’s commandments? In my letter I wrote you to quit mixing in company with fornicators, not meaning entirely with the fornicators of this world or the greedy persons and extortioners or idolaters. Otherwise, you would actually have to get out of the world. But now I am writing you to quit mixing in company with anyone called a brother that is a fornicator or a greedy person or an idolater or a reviler or a drunkard or an extortioner, not even eating with such a man. For what do I have to do with judging those outside? Do you not judge those while God judges those outside? “Remove the wicked one from among yourselves.”-1 Cor. 5:9-13. As for a man that promotes a sect, reject him after first and a second admonition; knowing that such a man has been turned out of the way and is sinning, he being self-condemned. – Titus 3:10, 11. Additional references: I Corinthians 5:5, 6; Joshua Optional questions for discussion: (a) Do you think that Jehovah’s moral standards and requirements for his servants are reasonable? (b) How have you personally benefited from what you have learned about elevated Christian morals? (c) Why would a person have to conform his way of life to Jehovah’s standards before he could be accepted for Christian baptism? Idolatry (1) What is idolatry? What warnings does the Bible give concerning idolatry? Guard yourselves from idols.-I John 5:21. You must not make for yourself a carved image or a form like anything that is in the heavens above or that is on the earth underneath or that is in the waters under the earth. You must not bow down to them nor be induced to serve them, because I Jehovah your God am a God exacting exclusive devotion.-Ex. 20:4, 5. Additional references: Jeremiah 10:14, 15; Psalm 115: Isaiah 42:8; 48:11. (2) What are various forms of idolatry that Christians must guard against in this modern world? Now while Saul was waiting for them in Athens, his spirit within him came to be irritated at beholding that the city was full of idols. Paul now stood in the midst of the Areopagus and said: “Men of Athens, I behold that in all things you seem to be more given to the fear of the deities than others are.”-Acts 17:16, 22. Nebuchadnezzar the king made an image of gold . . . the herald was crying out loudly: “To you it is being said,…O peoples…. that…you fall down and worship the image of gold that Nebuchadnezzar the king has set up.” -Dan.3: 1-5. On a set day Herod clothed himself with royal raiment and sat down upon the judgment seat and began giving them a public address. In turn the assembled people began shouting “A god’s voice, and not a man’s!” Instantly the angel of Jehovah struck him, because he did not give the glory to God, and he became eaten up with worms and expired. -Acts 12:21-23. If anyone worships the wild beast and its image, and receives a mark on his forehead or upon his hand, he will also drink of the wine of the anger of God.-Rev. 14:9, 10. Additional references: I Samuel 15:22, 23; Colossians 3:5.Separate From the World (1) According to the Bible, who is “the ruler of the world” and the god of this system of things”? I shall not speak much with you anymore, for the ruler of the world is coming. And he has no hold on me [Jesus Christ].-John 14:30. The god of this system of things has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, that the illumination of the glorious good news about the Christ, who is the image of God, might not shine through-2 Cor. 4:4. Additional references: I John 5:19; Revelation 12:9. (2) What is the position of Christians as to this world alienated from God? They are no part of the world, just as I am no part of the world.-John 17:16. Do you not know that the friendship with the world is enmity with God? Whoever, therefore, wants to be a friend of the world is constituting himself an enemy of God.-Jas. 4:4. Additional reference: John 15:19-21. (3) What was Jesus’ attitude toward participation in the political affairs of the world? The Devil took him along to an unusually high mountain, and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory, and he said to him: “All these things I will give you if you fall down and do an act of worship to me.” Then Jesus said to him: “Go away, Satan! For it is written, ‘It is Jehovah your God you must worship, and it is to him alone you must render sacred servi ce.’ “-Matt. 4:8-10. Jesus, knowing they were about to come and seize him to make him king, withdrew again into the mountain all alone. -John 6:15. Additional reference: John 18:36. (4) When a person separates himself from tbe world and becomes a Christian, what treatment might he expect from those remaining in the world? All those desiring to live with godly devotion in association with Christ Jesus will also be persecuted-2 Tim. 3:12. If you were part of the world, the world would be fond what is its own. Now because you are no part of the but I have chosen you out of the world, on this account the world hates you…. If they have persecuted me, they will persecute you also.-John 15:19-21. Additional reference: Luke 21:12, 13. (5) How does being separate from the world affect the secular employment of a Christian? Let the stealer steal no more, but rather let him do hard work, doing with his hands what is good work, that he have something to distribute to someone in need-Eph. -1 The Devil … is a liar and the father of the lie.-John 8: What! Do you not know that unrighteous persons will not inherit God’s kingdom? Do not be misled. Neither fornicators nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men kept for unnatural purposes, nor men who lie with men, nor thieves, nor greedy persons, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit God’s kingdom-1 Cor. 6:9, 10. He will certainly render judgment among many peoples, and set matters straight respecting mighty nations far away. And they will have to beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning shears. They will not lift up sword, nation against nation, neither will they learn war anymore. -Mic. 4:2, 3. Write them to abstain … from blood.-Acts 15:20. Jesus, knowing they were about to come and seize him to make him king, withdrew again into the mountain all alone. -John 6:15. I heard another voice out of heaven say: “Get out of her [Babylon the Great], my people, if you do not want to share with her in her sins, and if you do not want to receive part of her plagues.”-Rev. 18:4. Additional references: Isaiah 2:2-4; John 17:16; Romans13:8-10; 1 Corinthians 7:23. (6) Adhering to what additional Bible principles will help a Christian to remain separate from the world with regard to his choice of entertainment and recreation? Do not be misled. Bad associations spoil useful habits.- Cor. 15:33. Do Dot be loving either the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him; because everything in the world-the desire of the flesh and the desire of the eyes and the showy display of one’s means of life -does not originate with the Father, but originates with the world. Furthermore, the world is passing away and so is its desire, but he that does the will of God remains forever-1 John 2:15-17. So keep strict watch that how you walk is not as unwise but as wise persons, buying out the opportune time for yourselves, because the days are wicked. On this account cease becoming unreasonable, but go on perceiving what the will of Jehovah is. Also, do not be getting drunk with wine, in which there is debauchery, but keep getting filled with spirit, speaking to yourselves with psalms and praises to God and spiritual songs, singing and accompanying yourselves with music in your hearts to Jehovah, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ giving thanks always for all things to our God and Father.-Eph. 5:15-20. Let fornication and uncleanness of every sort or greediness not even be mentioned among you, just as it befits holy people.-Eph. 5:3. Additional references: Philippians 4:8; Ephesians 5:4; Colossians 3:5, 6; Proverbs 26:18, 19.Optional questions for discussion: (a) How has your study of the Bible helped you to keep yourself separate from the world? (b) What pressures or enticements have you had to resist in order to come into a good relationship with Jehovah and maintain it? (c) What Bible counsel have you found to be particularly helpful in maintaining separateness from the world? Interfaith Would it be proper for true Christians to share in worship with other religious groups? I heard another voice out of heaven say: “Get out of her, my people, if you do not want to share with her in her sins, and if you do not want to receive part of her plagues. For her sins have massed together clear up to heaven, and God has called her acts of injustice to mind.”– Rev. 18:4, 5. Additional references: I Corinthians 10:20; 2 Corinthians 6:14-18; Matthew 7:13, 14, 21-23; 2 Timothy 3:2, 5; Numbers 25-.1, 2. Optional questions for discussion: (a) What are some examples of interfaith activity that true Christians should avoid? (b) Why would a person have to make sure that he has cut off all association with false religious organizations before presenting himself for baptism as one of Jehovah’s es? (c) What would this include? Holidays and Celebrations (1) Are Christians under obligation to observe certain days as holidays? Now that you have come to know God, or rather now that you have come to be known by God, how is it that you are turning back again to the weak and beggarly elementary things and want to slave for them over again? You are scrupulously observing days and months and seasons and years. I fe ar for you, that somehow I have toiled to no purpose respecting you.- Gal. 4:9-11. Additional reference: Colossians 2:16, 17. (2) What is the only religious celebration that Christians are commanded to observe? Also, he took a loaf, gave thanks, broke it, and gave to them, saying: “This means my body which is to be given in your behalf. Keep doing this in remembrance of me” -Luke 22:19. Additional reference: 1 Corinthians 11:23-26. (3) What are some of the Bible principles that will help you to determine whether or not you should observe or participate in celebrations that are popular in your community? They are no part of the world, just as I am no part of the world.-John 17:16. Do not be loving either the world or the things in world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father not in him; because everything in the world-the desirc the flesh and the desire of the eyes and the showy display of one’s means of life -does not originate with the Father, but originates with the world. Furthermore, the world is passing away and so is its desire, but he that does the will of God remains forever.-I John 2:15-17. The time that has passed by is sufficient for you to worked out the will of the nations when you proceeded in deeds of loose conduct, lusts, excesses with wine, revelries, drinking matches, and illegal idolatries-1 Pet. 4:3. Additional references: 1 Corinthians 15:33; 2 Corininthians 6:14-17; Galatians 5:19-21; Romans 13:13. 4) What mention is made in the Bible of birthday celebrations? How does this affect your view of birthday celebrations? But when Herod’s birthday was being celebrated the daughter of Herodias danced at it and pleased Herod so much that he promised with an oath to give her whatever she asked. Then she, unde r her mother’s coaching, said: “Give me here upon a platter the head of John the Baptist.” Grieved though he was, the king out of regard for his oaths and for those reclining with him commanded it to be given; and he sent and had John beheaded in the prison. And his head was brought on a platter and given to the maiden, and she brought it to her mother.-Matt. 14:6-11. Additional references: Genesis 40:20-22; Ecclesiastes 7:1,8. Optional questions for discussion: (a) What are some of the holidays or celebrations popular in your community that true Christians avoid? (b) What do you need to do to keep from getting involved in worldly holidays or celebrations that run counter to Christian principles? (c) If you have minor children, how can you help them avoid unchristian practices related to worldly holidays? Baptism (1) Why do Jehovah’s Witnesses baptize in water those who embrace the Christian faith? Go therefore and make disciples of people of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Fathe r and of the Son and of the holy spirit.-Matt. 28:19. He commanded them to be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ.-Acts 10:48. Additional references: Matthew 3:13-17; 1 Peter 2:21; Acts 8:12, 35-38. (2) Who should be baptized? When? Those who embraced his word heartily were baptized. -Acts 2:41. When they believed Philip, who was declaring the good news of the kingdom of God and of the name of Jesus Christ, they proceeded to be baptized.-Acts 8: 12. Repent, and lot each one of you be baptized in the name Of Jesus Christ.-Acts 2:38. Additional references: Hebrews 10:5-7; Luke 3:21, 23; 1 Peter 3:21. 3) What does it mean to be baptized in the name of (a) the Father? (b) the Son? (c) the holy spirit? You, whose name is Jehovah, you alone are the Most over all the earth.-Ps. 83:18. God exalted him to a superior position and kindly gave him the name that is above every other name, so that in the name of Jesus every knee should bend of those in heaven and those on earth and those under the ground, and every tongue should openly acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord to the glory of God the Father.-Phil. 2:9-11. I will request the Father and he will give you another helper to be with you forever, the spirit of the truth.-John 14:16, 17. Additional references: Revelation 1:5; Joel 2:28, 29. Optional questions for discussion: (a) Why do you want to be baptized? (b) Have you already brought your life harmony with Jehovah’s righteous requirements according to what you have learned from your study of the Bible? (c) Are you at present sharing the good news of the Kingdom with others, demonstrating that you understand that this is Jehovah’s will for you at this time? (d) Have you expressed to Jehovah in prayer your desire to be one of his dedicated witnesses and to serve him in unity with his organized people? PART III SUBMISSION TO JEHOVAH’S ARRANGEMENT OF THINGS While still in Eden the first man and woman joined the rebellion led by “the original serpent,” Satan the Devil. (Rev. 12:9) They ceased being submissive to Jehovah’s arrangement of things. Having been introduced to a course of independance from God, they set out on their own. From that time forward the course taken by man has only served to confirm the truthfulness of Jeremiah’s words recorded at Jeremiah 10:23, where we read: “I well know, 0 Jehovah, that to earthling man his way does not belong. It does not belong to man who is walking even to direct his steps.’ Through your study of the Bible you learned about Jehovah’s purpose to bring all things back into subjection to himself, just as they were in the beginning. (Eph. 1:8-10; 1 Cor. 15:24- 28) Having reached this point in your study you are also desirous of finding your place in Jehovah’s arrangement of things and of being submissive to his rule. The following questions and related Scripture references will help you to examine your own understanding of submission to Jehovah’s arrangements as regards congregation organization, Christian family life and the political rulers of the day. Submission in the Congregation Arrangement (1) What is the basic principle underlying Jehovah’s arrangement Of things within the Christian congregation? But I want you to know that the head of every man is the Christ; in turn the head of a woman is the man; in turn the head of the Christ is God-1 Cor. 11:3. He (Jesus Christ] is the head of the body, the congregation-Col. 1:18. Additional references: Ephesians 1:22, 23; Hebrews 12:9; James 4:7. (2) Why is there a particular need for submitting to Jehovah’s arrangement of things in the Christian congregation today? For God is a God, not of disorder, but of peace. . . . But let all things take place decently and by arrangement. -1 Cor. 14:33, 40. You, though, keep your senses in all things,…do the work of an evangelizer, fully accomplish your ministry. -2 Tim. 4:5. Additional references: Ephesians 4:16; 1 Corinthians 12:18,28. (3) What are some examples of Jesus’ disciples submitting to his instructions in order to carry out their ministry in an orderly way? Now he summoned the twelve, and he initiated sending them out two by two, and he began to give them authority over the unclean spirits. And the apostles gathered together before Jesus and reported to him all the things they done and taught.-Mark 6:7, 30. After these things the Lord designated seventy others, and sent them forth by twos in advance of him into every city and place to which he himself was going to come.-Luke 10: 1. Additional references: Luke 9:14-17; Matthew 10:1-23. (4) How does Jesus exercise headship over the Christian congregation today? Who really is the faithful and discreet slave whom his master appointed over his domestics, to give them them food at the proper time? Happy is that slave if his master on arriving finds him doing so. Truly I say to you, He will appoint him over all his belongings. -Matt. 24:45-47. But the helper, the holy spirit, which the Father will send in my name, that one will teach you all things and bring back to your minds all the things I told you.-John 14:26 Additional references: Luke 12:42-44; John 16:12-14. (5) By what visible means is Christ’s headship represented in the congregation? However, from Miletus he sent to Ephesus and called for the older men of the congregation. When they got to him he said to them: . . . “Pay attention to yourselves and to all the flock, among which the holy spirit has appointed you overseers, to shepherd the congregation of God.”-Acts 20:17, 18, 28. Therefore, to the older men among you I give this exhortation…. Shepherd the flock of God in your care, not compulsion, but willingly; neither for love of dishonest gain but eagerly; neither as lording it over those who are God’s heritance, but becoming examples to the flock-1 Pet. 5:13 Additional references: Titus 1:5; Isaiah 32:1, 2. (6) How do members of the congregation demonstrate submission to the headship of Christ in the congregation? Remember those who are taking the lead among you, have spoken the word of God to you, and as you contemplate how their conduct turns out imitate their faith.-Heb. 13: 7 Be obedient to those who are taking the lead among you and be submissive, for they are keeping watch over your souls as those who will render an account; that they may do this with joy and not with sighing, for this would be damaging to you.-Heb. 13:17. Additional references: 1 Timothy 5:17; 1 Thessalonians 5:12, 13; 1 Corinthians 16:16. optional questions for discussion: (a) Are you able to identify “the faithful and discreet slave” today? How? (b) What is the Governing Body of the Christian congregation? What purpose does it serve? (See Acts 6:1-6; 8:14; 15:1-29; 16:4, 5.) (c) What legal agencies are used by the Governing Body today to accomplish the publishing of the good news worldwide? (d) Why would submitting to Jehovah’s arrangement in the congregation include giving material support to the work of the congregation to the extent of your ability? Submission in Christian Family Life (1) In God’s arrangement of things, who is the head of the married woman? You wives, be in subjection to your husbands, as it is becoming in the Lord.-Col. 3:18. Let wives be in subjection to their husbands as to the Lord, because a husband is head of his wife as the Christ also is head of the congregation, he being a savior of this body.-Eph. 5:22, 23. Additional reference: Titus 2:4, 5. (2) How should a husband exercise headship over his wife? Whose example does he have to follow as a pattern? In this way husbands ought to be loving their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself, for no man ever hated his own flesh; but he feeds and cherishes it, as the Christ also does the congregation. -Eph. 5:28, 29. You husbands, keep on loving your wives and do not be bitterly angry with them.-Col. 3:19. Additional reference: 1 Peter 3:7. (3) Is the wife whose husband is not a believer freed from his headship? In like manner, you wives, be in subjection to your own husbands, in order that, if any are not obedient to the word, they may be won without a word through the conduct of their wives, because of having been eyewitnesses of your chaste conduct together with deep respect-1 Pet. 3:1, 2. Additional references: Romans 7:2; 1 Corinthians 7:10. 4) Who is responsible before God for the training and disciplining of children? And you, fathers, do not be irritating your children, but go on bringing them up in the discipline and mental-regulating of Jehovah.-Eph. 6:4.Additional references: Colossians 3:21; Proverbs 13:24;29: 15; Deuteronomy 6:6, 7. (5) What responsibility do children have in the family arrangement? Children, be obedient to your parents in union with the Lord, for this is righteous: “Honor your father and your mother”; which is the first command with a promise, “That it may go well with you and you may endure a long time the earth.”-Eph. 6:1-3. You children, be obedient to your parents in everything for this is well-pleasing in the Lord.- Col. 3:20. Additional references: Deuteronomy 5:16; Proverbs I4:1; 6:20; 23:22. Optional questions for discussion: (a) If you are a married woman, in what way can you demonstrate your submission to your husband? (b) Does this seem to be righteous and just to you? (c) If your husband does not appreciate your cooperation in this regard, how do you still benefit? (d)If you are a man with family responsibilities, what worldly attitudes must you avoid if you are to exercise your headship in a Christlike manner? (e) If you are a minor child, what benefits will come to you and to the family as a result of your being submissive to your parents? (f) What factors may it make it difficult for you to be submissive at times? Submission to the Civil Authorities (1) What is the proper attitude for Christians to maintain toward worldly rulers? Let every soul be in subjection to the superior authorities, for there is no authority except by God; the existing authorities stand placed in their relative positions by God. -Rom. 13:1. Continue reminding them to be in subjection and be obedient to governments and authorities as rulers.-Titus 3: 1. Additional references: 1 Peter 2:13, 14; Daniel 6:5;26:2, 3; 1 Timothy 2:1-3 (2) Must a Christian pay all taxes and assessments demanded by law? Render to all their dues, to him who calls for the tax, the tax; to him who calls for the tribute, the tribute; to him who calls for fear, such fear; to him who calls for honor, such honor -Rom. 13:7. Additional reference: Luke 20:21-25. (3) Are there any circumstances under which a Christian would refuse to obey the worldly rulers? With that they called them and charged them, nowhere to make any utterance or to teach upon the basis of the name of Jesus. But in reply Peter and John said to them: “Whether it is righteous in the sight of God to listen to you rather than to God, judge for yourselves. But as for us, we cannot stop speaking about the things we have seen and heard.” -Acts 4:18-20. In answer Peter and the other apostles said: ‘Ve must obey God as ruler rather than men.”- Acts 5:29. Additional references: Isaiah 2:4; Daniel 3:16-18; 6:4-24; Exodus 1:15-20. (4) Should Christians comply with legal requirements such as the registering of marriages and births, respond to census inquiries or obtain required licenses and permits that do not conflict with God’s laws? Now in those days a decree went forth . . . for all the inhabited earth to be registered … Of course, Joseph also went up from Galilee … to get registered with Mary, who had been given him in marriage.-Luke 2:1-5. Continue reminding them to be in subjection and be obedient to governments and authorities as rulers.-Titus 3:1. Additional references: 1 Timothy 3:2, 9; compare Acts 18:1-3; Hebrews 13:4. Optional questions for discussion: (a) Why is it important for you to be submissive to the civil authorities even when their rule may seem to be oppressive? (b) How can you be submissive to the political rulers without violating Christian neutrality? PART IV WORKS THAT DEMONSTRATE CHRISTIAN FAITH-Jas. 2:18 You have already observed in your association with Jehovah’s Witnesses that they are a busy people, “always having plenty to do in the work of the Lord.” (1 Cor. 15:58) The very fact that you have been able to take in accurate knowledge about Jehovah and his purposes is an evidence of the diligent efforts of Jehovah’s dedicated people in your behalf. By the time you have come to consider this portion of the book Organized to Accomplish Our Ministry with the overseers of the local congregation, you should already be giving clear evidence of your heart appreciation for what you have learned. You show this appreciation by attending and participating in all the congregation meetings to the extent of your ability. Also, you should already be having a regular share in the Kingdom-preaching work, helping others to come to know Jehovah and what he is doing for mankind. (Matt. 24:128:19, 20) It is not sufficient for a person merely to know what is right and be able to answer specific questions in harmony with what is true.Having knowledge is really of little value unless it is applied in a practical way, and this for the benefit of others as well as for oneself.-John17; 1 John 5:3. Addressing his words to sincere inquirers Jehovah’s prophet Micah wrote: “With what shall I confront Jehovah? With what shall I bow myself to God on high? Shall I confront him with whole burnt offerings, with calves a year old? Will Jehovah be pleased with thousands of rams, with tens of thousands of torrents of oil? Shall I give my firstborn son for my revolt, the fruitage of my belly for the sin of my soul? He has told you, earthling man, what is good. And what is Jehovah sking back from you but to exercise justice and to love kindness and to be modest in walking with your God?” (Mic. 6:6-8) Yes, Jehovah wants you to walk with him in modesty, give him your heart and take pleasure in doing his will.-Prov. 23:26. This section of questions will help you to identify clearly and fix in mind Jehovah’s requirements as to Christian works. It will help you to be sure that you have made a proper dedication of your life to Jehovah God before submitting to water baptism. You can be sure that Jehovah appreciates your sincere response to his undeserved kindness expressed in your behalf. Relationship Between Works and Faith Why must approved works accompany our Christian faith? Faith, if it does not have works, is dead in itself. Nevertheless, a certain one will say: “You have faith, and I have works. Show me your faith apart from the works, and I shall show you my faith by my works.” Indeed, as the body without spirit is dead, so also faith without works is dead. -Jas. 2:17, 18, 26. The conclusion of the matter, everything having been heard, is: Fear the true God and keep his commandments. For this is the whole obligation of man. For the true God himself will bring every sort of work into the judgment in relation to every hidden thing, as to whether it is good or bad.-Ecel. 12:13, 14. Additional references: John 6:27-29; 13:17; James 1:27; 4:17; compare Matthew 7:15-27. Optional questions for discussion: (a) In what way are Christian works different from works of the Law? (b) Why would it not be proper for us to compare our works of faith with those of fellow believers? Christian Meetings (1) Why is it beneficial to attend the meetings arranged by the congregation? Let us consider one another to incite to love and fine works, not forsaking the gathering of ourselves together, as some have the custom, but encouraging one another, and all the more so as you behold the day drawing near.-Heb. 10:24, 25. Additional references: Proverbs 18:1; Romans 1:11, 12. (2) What is the proper attitude for us to have toward opportunities to meet together with our spiritual brothers and sisters? I rejoiced when they were saying to me: “To the house Jehovah let us go.”-Ps. 122:1. Additional references: I Corinthians 16:19, 20; Romans 16:16; 1:11. (3) What information beneficial to Jehovah’s people is considered at congregation meetings?And when this letter has been read among you, arrange that it also be read in the congregation of the Laodiceans, and that you also read the one from Laodicea.-Col. 4:16. Who really is the faithful steward, the discreet one, whom his master will appoint over his body of attendants to keep giving them their measure of food supplies at the proper time?-Luke 12:42. Additional references: Revelation 2:1; 3:1; Acts 13: 1; 1 Timothy 5:17. (4) Whose teaching and instruction is given at the congregation meetings? And all your sons will be persons taught by Jehovah, the peace of your sons will be abundant.-Isa. 54:13. Additional references: Job 36:22; Isaiah 30:20; Romans 15:4. (5) Why should you endeavor to participate in congregation meetings by commenting and otherwise as you have opportunity? I will declare your name to my brothers; in the middle of the congregation I shall praise you.- Ps. 22:22. Let us consider one another to incite to love and fine works.-Heb. 10:24. Additional reference: Romans 10:9, 10. (6) Who should attend the congregation meetings order to be instructed in righteousness? Congregate the people, the men and the women and little ones . . . , in order that they may listen and in order that they may learn, as they must fear Jehovah God and take care to carry out all the words of this law. -Deut. 31:12. Additional references: Nehemiah 8:1-3; compare Acts 16:1, 2 with 2 Timothy 3:14, 15. optional questions for discussion: (a) What effort have you personally put forth in order to be in regular attendance at congregation meetings? (b) How have you benefited from regular association with Jehovah’s Witnesses at congregation nieetings? (c) Why is it beneficial for you to prepare well for each congregation meeting? How do you find time to do so? Our Kingdom Ministry (1) What urgent work does the Bible set out for all Christians at this time? This good news of the kingdom will be preached in all the inhabited earth for a witness to all the nations; and then the end will come.-Matt. 24:14. Go therefore and make disciples of people of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the holy spirit, teaching them to observe all the things I have commanded you.-Matt. 28:19, 20. Additional references: Mark 13:10; Acts 1:8; 2:17, 18. (2) According to the following scriptures, what are some of the various ways in which our ministry may be accomplished? He went journeying from city to city and from village to village, preaching and declaring the good news of the kingdom of God.-Luke 8:1. A certain woman named Martha received him as guest into the house. This woman also had a sister called Mary, who, however, sat down at the feet of the Lord and kept listening to his word.-Luke 10:38, 39. Now Jesus, tired out from the journey, was sitting at the fountain just as he was. . . . A woman of Samaria came to draw water. . . . Jesus said to her: “Everyone drinking from this water will get thirsty again. Whoever drinks from the water that I will give him will never get thirsty at all.” -John 4:6-14. Consequently he began to reason in the synagogue with the Jews and the other people who worshiped God and every day in the marketplace with those who happened to be on hand.-Acts 17:17. I did not hold back from telling you any of the that were profitable nor from teaching you publicly and from house to house.-Acts 20:20. Additional references: Matthew 10:11-14; Acts 5:42; 1 Proverbs 1:20, 21. (3) Is this work done in our own strength? We have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the power beyond what is normal may be God’s and not that out ourselves-2 Cor. 4:7. Additional references: 2 Timothy 4:17; Revelation 14: 6; Matthew 10:19, 20; Philippians 4:13. (4) Why should you be willing to preach the good news to all kinds of people in your assigned territory? At this Peter opened his mouth and said: “For a certainty I perceive that God is not partial, but in every nation the man that fears him and works righteousness is acceptable him.”-Acts 10:34, 35. Additional references: Matthew 24:14; Revelation 14: 6; Psalm 49:1, 2. (5) Why should you take most seriously your responsibility to share the good news with others? I call you to witness this very day that I am clean from the blood of all men, for I have not held back from telling you all the counsel of God.-Acts 20:26, 27.Additional references: I Corinthians 9:16; Ezekiel 33: 8; 1 Timothy 4:16. Optional questions for discussion: (a) Are you at present, having a regular share each month in Kingdom service, preaching the good news to others? (b) Is someone helping you and training you to be effective in the field ministry? (c) Why is working from house to house in the field ministry so important? (d) When you find a person who manifests genuine interest in the good news, what further assistance should you endeavor to give that person? (e) While exerting yourself in the field ministry, why would it be wrong you to make comparisons between your ministry and that of others? Honoring Jehovah With Your Valuable Things (1) What pattern set in ancient Israel serves as a model for giving material support to the Kingdom work today? And the people gave way to rejoicing over their making voluntary offerings, for it was with a complete heart that they made voluntary offerings to Jehovah; and even David the king himself rejoiced with great joy-1 Chron. 29:9. Additional references: Exodus 35:21, 22, 29; Proverbs 3:9, 10; Malachi 3:10. (2) (2) What lesson did Jesus teach about generous giving? And he sat down with the treasury chests in view and began observing how the crowd was dropping money into the treasury chests; and many rich people were dropping in many coins. Now a poor widow came and dropped in two small coins, which have very little value. So he called his disciples to him and said to them: “Truly I say to you that this poor widow dropped in more than all those dropping money into the treasury chests; for they all dropped in out of their surplus, but she, out of her want, dropped in all of what she had, her whole living.”-Mark 12:41-44. I have exhibited to you in all things that by thus laboring you must assist those who are weak, and must bear in mind the words of the Lord Jesus, when he himself said, “There is more happiness in giving than there is in receiving.” –Acts 20:35. Additional reference: Luke 6:38. (3) What example of giving in support of the congregation was set by first-century Christians? In everything you are being enriched for every sort of generosity, which produces through us an expression of thanks to God; because the ministry of this public service is not only to supply abundantly the wants of the holy ones but also to be rich with many expressions of thanks to God. Through the proof that this ministry gives, they glorify God because you are submissive to the good news about the Christ, as you publicly declare you are, and because you are generous in your contribution to them and to all; and with supplication for you they long for you because of the surpassing undeserved kindness of God upon you-2 Cor. 9:11-14. Additional references: Philippians 4:14-16; Romans 15:26. (4) Why must we be concerned about our brothers and sisters who come to be in need of material assistance? If a brother or a sister is in a naked state and lacking the food sufficient for the day, yet a certain one of you says to them: “Go in peace, keep warm and well fed,” but you do not give them the nece ssities for their body, of what benefit is it?-Jas. 2:15, 16. Additional references: James 1:27; 2 Corinthians 9:1, 2; Proverbs 11:25. (5) In addition to any material contributions to advance the good news, what should we offer that is even more important? Consequently I entreat you by the compassions of God, brothers, to present your bodies a sacrifice living, holy, acceptable to God, a sacred service with your power of reason. -Rom. 12: 1. Through him let us always offer to God a sacrifice of praise, that is, the fruit of lips which make public declaration to his name.-Heb. 13:15. Additional references: Mark 12:30, 31; Matthew 28:19, 20. (6) What should be our attitude toward giving of ourselves and of our material possessions in Jehovah’s service? And yet, who am I and who are my people, that we should retain power to make voluntary offerings like this? For everything is from you, and out of your own hand we have given to you- 1 Chron. 29:14. Additional references: 1 Corinthians 4:7; 2 Corinthians 9:6, 7; Luke 17: 10. Optional questions for discussion: (a) What are some of the needs of the local congregation that are taken care of by the voluntary contributions of the members of the congregation? (b) How do contributions made directly to the nearest branch office of the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society assist in the advancement of the good news? (c) Why should all contributions be made on a voluntary basis and not solicited or assessed? Dedication and Baptism (1) What should always be our attitude toward the doing of Jehovah’s will? To do your will, 0 my God, I have delighted, and your law is within my inward parts.-Ps. 40:8. Happy is the man in fear of Jehovah, in whose commandinents he has taken very much delight.-Ps. 112:1. My food is for me to do the will of him that sent me and to finish his work.-John 4:34. Additional references: Hebrews 10:9; Luke 10:27. (2) Why should this joyful and willing attitude prevail even when we are persecuted or undergoing any form of trial?Consider it all joy, my brothers, when you meet with various trials, knowing as you do that this tested quality of your faith works out endurance.-Jas. 1:2, 3. These, therefore, went their way from before the Sanhedrin, rejoicing because they had been counted worthy to be dishonored in behalf of his name.-Acts 5:41. Additional references: Matthew 5:10-12; 1 Peter 2:20; 4:14. (3) What does it mean for a person to dedicate himself to Jehovah? Look! I am come (in the roll of the book it is written about me) to do your will, 0 God…. Look! I am come to do your will.-Heb. 10:7, 9. Then Jesus said to his disciples: “If anyone wants to come after me, let him disown himself and pick up his torture stake and continually follow me.”-Matt. 16:24. Additional references: Psalm 143:10; Ecclesiastes 12:13; compare 1 Kings 18:21 and Hosea 9:10. (4) When a person has sincerely repented, turned around and made a decision to follow Christ, why should he be baptized? Go therefore and make disciples of people of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the holy spirit.-Matt. 28:19. Then Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan to John, in order to be baptized by him.-Matt. 3:13. In fact, to this course you were called, because even Christ suffered for you, leaving you a model for you to follow his steps closely.-I Pet. 2:21. Additional references: Acts 8:12, 35, 36; 19:5; 22:16; 1 Peter 3:21. (5) Why is it appropriate for dedicated and baptized Christians to be called Jehovah’s Witnesses? “You are my witnesses,” is the utterance of Jehovah, “even my servant whom I have chosen, in order that you may know and have faith in me, and that you may understand that I am the same One. Before me there was no God formed, and after me there continued to be none. I-I am Jehovah, an(i besides me there is no savior. I myself have told forth and have saved and have caused it to be heard, when there was among you no strange god. So you are my witnesses,” is the utterance of Jehovah, “and I am God.”-Isa. 43:10-12. And from Jesus Christ, “the Faithful Witness,” “The firstborn from the dead,” and “The Ruler of the kings of the earth.”-Rev. 1:5. Additional references: John 18:37; Revelation 3:14; 1 Peter 2:9, 21. CONCLUDING QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION: (a) Following your baptism in water, why will it be vital for you to maintain a good schedule for personal study and to share regularly in the ministry? (b) How will staying in close association with the congregation help you to carry out your dedication to Jehovah? (c) How will you go about proving to Jehovah that your dedication has been made in sincerity and from your heart? (d) Are you now thoroughly convinced that you should be baptized at the first opportunity?

PART I

ELEMENTARY BIBLE TEACHINGS – Heb. 5: 11-6:3

During your study of the Bible with Jehovah’s Witnesses you have become acquainted with the pattern of truth and very likely find it is quite different from what you formerly believed. What you have learned has brought you great spiritual refreshment and has no doubt set before you the hope of future life and blessings on a Paradise earth under God’s Kingdom. Your faith in his Word has been strengthened, and through association with his organized people you have already experienced many blessings. You have come to appreciate how Jehovah is dealing with his chosen people today. -Zech. 8:23.

Now, as you prepare for water baptism in symbol of your personal dedication to Jehovah God, you will benefit from a review of elementary Bible teachings conducted by the congregation elders. If you do not understand some things so as to be able to give a reasonable answer to those who may ask or to persons you will approach in field service, the elders will kindly help you to improve Your understanding- I Pet. 3:15.

Your desire should be in harmony with the words of the apostle Paul that we read at Hebrews 6:1-3: “For this reason, now that we have left the primary doctrine about the Christ, let us press on to maturity, not laying a foundation again, namely, repentance from dead works, and faith toward God. . . . the laying on of the hands, the resurrection of the dead and everlasting judgment. And this we will do, if God indeed permits.”

May Jehovah continue to bless all your endeavors to take in knowledge of him, and may he grant you the promised reward.-John 17:3.

The True God

(1) Who is the true God?

You well know today, and you must call back to your heart that Jehovah is the true God in the heavens and on the earth beneath. There is no other.—Deut. 4: 39.

Jesus spoke these things, and, raising his eyes to heaven, he said: “Father…. this means everlasting life, their taking in knowledge of you, the only true God.”-John 17: 1-3.

This is what the true God, Jehovah, has said, “I am Jehovah. That is my name.”–Isa. 42:5, 8.

For even though there are those who are called “gods” whether in heaven or on earth, just as there are “gods” and many “lords,” there is actually to us one God the Father, out of whom all things are, and we for him; and there is one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom all are, and we through him-1 Cor. 8:5, 6.

Additional references: Deuteronomy 4:35; Psalm 8:1, Isaiah 43:10-12.

(2) What are some of Jehovah’s outstanding qualities?

God is love.-I John 4:8. The Rock, perfect is his activity, for all his ways are justice. A God of faithfulness, with whom there is no injustice; righteous and upright is he.-Deut. 32:4. 0 the depth of God’s riches and wisdom and knowledge! How unsearchable his judgments are and past tracing out his ways are!–Rom. 11:33. Alas, 0 Sovereign Lord Jehovah! Here you yourself made the heavens and the earth by your great power by your outstretched arm. The whole matter is not too wonderful for you yourselfJer. 32:17. Additional references: Exodus 34: 6; 2 Peter 3:9;3:12; Psalm 90:2 (3) What does it mean to give Jehovah exclusive devotion? Why is he alone deserving? Jesus said to him, [Satan]: “It is written, ‘It is Jehovah your God you must worship, and it is to him alone you must render sacred service.’ “-Luke 4:8, No one can slave for two masters; for either he will hate the ono and love the other, or he will stick to the one and despise the other. You cannot slave for God and for Riches. -Matt. 6:24. You are worthy, Jehovah, even our God, to receive the glory and the honor and the power, because you created all things, and because of your will they existed and were created.-Rev. 4:11. Additional references: Exodus 20:4, 5; Isaiah 33:22; 42:8; Acts 17:28. (4) Why is it important for us to use God’s personal name in worship? Everyone who calls on the name of Jehovah will be saved. -Rom. 10:13. For all the peoples, for their part, will walk each one in the name of its god; but we, for our part, shall walk in the name of Jehovah our God to time indefinite, even forever.-Mic. 4:5. Additional references: Exodus 20:7; Psalm 91:14; Isaiah 12:4, 5; Joel 2:32; Acts 15:14. (5) How will Jehovah God sanctify his name? How can we have a share in it? I shall certainly magnify myself and sanctify myself and make myself known before the eyes of many nations; and they will have to know that I am Jehovah.–Ezek. 38:23. 0 may they be ashamed and be disturbed for all times, and may they become abashed and perish; that people may know that you, whose name is Jehovah, you alone are the Most High over all the earth.-Ps. 83:17, 18. Be wise, my son, and make my heart rejoice, that I may make a reply to him that is taunting me.-Prov. 27:11. Additional references: Exodus 5:2; Psalm 2.2, 9; Ezekiel36:16-24; 1 Peter 2:12. (6) Why would it be wrong for us to make an image Of God or attempt to worship him through the use of images? You must not make for yourself a carved image, any form like anything that is in the heavens above or that is on the earth unde rneath or that is in the waters under the earth. You must not bow down to them or be led to serve them, because I Jehovah your God am a God exacting exclusive devotion.-Deut. 5:8, 9. You did not see any form on the day of Jehovah’s speaking to you in Horeb.-Deut. 4:15. God is a Spirit, and those worshiping him must worship with spirit and truth.-John 4:24. We are walking by faith, not by sight-2 Cor. 5: 7.. Additional references: Psalm 115:4-8; Isaiah 42:8; Acts 17:29. (7) Why should we endeavor to continue learning all we can about Jehovah? How can we do so? Become imitators of God, as beloved children.-Eph. 5: 1 God proceeded to create the man in his image, in his image he created him.-Gen. 1:27. If you men had known me, you would have known my Father also; from this moment on you know him and have seen him. . . . He that has seen me has seen the Father also.-John 14:7-9. His invisible qualities are clearly . . . perceived by the things made -Rom.1:20. Additional references: John 1:18; Exodus 33:13; Jereimiah 22:15, 16; 1 John 4:8; compare I John 2:3-6. Optional questions for discussion: (a) Has your stud the Bible caused you to reject certain false teachings about God? What are they? (b) Has the knowledge you now have about God moved you to want to serve him? What are you now doing to demonstrate your desire to serve Jehovah? (c) What will you need to do in order to continue building your appreciation for Jehovah? Jesus Christ and the Ransom (1) Who is Jesus Christ? Peter said: “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.”-Matt. 16:16. In the beginning the Word was, and the Word was God, and the Word was a god. This one was in the beginning with God. So the Word became flesh and resided among us and we had a view of his glory, a glory such as belongs to an only-begotten son from a father-John 1:1, 2, 14. Additional references: Luke 1:30-33; Colossians 1:1, Acts 2:36; 3:15; 5:31. (2) What is his position in relation to Jehovah God? I am going my way to the Father, because the Father is greater than I am.-John 14:28. There is one God, and one mediator between God and men, a man, Christ Jesus.-I Tim. 2:5. Additional references: Philippians 2:5-11; John 14:10, 11;1 Corinthians 11:3. (3) Why did Jesus come to earth and die a sacrificial death? The Son of man came, not to be ministered to, but to minister and to give his soul a ransom in exchange for many.-Matt. 20:28. He beheld Jesus coming toward him, and he said: “See, the Lamb of God that takes away the sin of the world!” -John 1:29. Additional references: Hebrews 2:9, 14, 15; John 3:16;18:37. (4) Why do we need the ransom? How does it affect you personally? Through one man sin entered into the world and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men because they had all sinned.-Rom. 5:12. By means of him we have the release by ransom through the blood of that one, yes, the forgiveness of our trespasses.-Eph. 1:7. Just as in Adam all are dying, so also in the Christ all will be made alive -1 Cor. 15:22. For the love the Christ has compels us, because this is what we have judged, that one man died for all; so, then, all had died; and he died for all that those who live might live no longer for themselves, but for him who died for them and was raised up-2 Cor. 5:14, 15. Additional references: Romans 3:23; Psalm 51:5; Galatians 1:4; 1 John 4:11. (5) How does Christ return and for what purpose? The Son of man is destined to come in the glory of his Father with his angels, and then he will recompense each one according to his behavior.-Matt. 16:27. When the Son of man arrives in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit down on his glorious throne.-Matt. 25:31. The utterance of Jehovah to my Lord is: “Sit at mv right hand until I place your enemies as a stool for you-r feet.” The rod of your strength Jehovah will send oul Zion, saying: “Go subduing in the midst of your enemi, -Ps. 110:1, 2. Additional references: I Peter 3:18; Daniel 7:13, 14; 2 Thessalonians 1:7-10; Luke 23:42, 43.Optional questions for discussion: (a) How is the ransom an expression of God’s love for mankind? (b) In what can you show your appreciation for the ransom? The Operation of Holy Spirit (1) What is the holy spirit and what has it ac@ complished as indicated by the following Bible texts? God’s active force was moving to and fro over the surface of the waters.-Gen. 1:2; compare Psalm 33:6 and 104:11 The spirit of Jehovah it was that spoke by me, and word was upon my tongue-2 Sam. 23:2; compare 2 Timothy 3:16 and 2 Peter 1:20, 21. But if it is by means of God’s spirit that I expel the demons, the kingdom of God has really overtaken you.-Matt. 12:28. They all became filled with holy spirit and started to speak with different tongues, just as the spirit was granting them to make utterance.-Acts 2:4. Additional references: Isaiah 61:1, 2; Acts 1:8; Revelation 1.10. (2) How does holy spirit operate for our benefit today? If you, although being wicked, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more so will the Father in heaven give holy spirit to those asking him!-Luke 11: 1 Teach me to do your will, for you are my God. Your spirit is good; may it lead me in the land of uprightness. -Ps. 143:10. All Scripture is inspired of God and beneficial for teaching, for reproving, for setting things straight, for disciplining in righteousness. – 2 Tim. 3:16. Pay attention to yourselves and to all the flock, among which the holy spirit has appointed you overseers, to shepherd the congregation of God.-Acts 20:28. Additional references: John 14:26; Matthew 10:19, 20 Philippians 4:13; Joel 2:28, 29. (3) Whose ideas are recorded in the Bible? Why should you regularly study God’s Word? That is why we also thank God incessantly, because when you received God’s word, which you heard from us, you accepted it, not as the word of men, but, just as it truthfully is, as the word of God, which is also at work in you believers.-I Thess. 2:13. Now the latter were more noble-minded than those in Thessalonica, for they received the word with the greatest eagerness of mind, carefully examining the Scriptures daily as to whether these things were so.-Acts 17:11. Additional references: Psalm 1:1-3; 119:105; 1 Timothy 4:13-16; John 17:17. Optional questions for discussion: (a) Have you endeavored to read the entire Bible? Why would it be good for you to do so? (b) When you have asked Jehovah to help you and direct you by holy spirit, why should you then endeavor to pay close attention to Bible-based counsel? Prayer (1) To whom should our prayers be directed? You must pray, then, this way: “Our Father in the heavens . . . “-Matt. 6:9. In everything by prayer and supplication along with thanksgiving le t your petitions be made known to God. -Phil. 4:6. Additional references: Psalm 5:1, 2; 65:1, 2; 69:13. (2) Does Jehovah listen to all prayers? Why do you so answer? If you ask the Father for anything he will give it to you in my name.-John 16:23. When you pray, you must not be as the hypocrites; because they like to pray … to be visible to men.-Matt. 6:5. The eyes of Jehovah are upon the righteous ones, and his ears are toward their supplication.- I Pet. 3:12. Additional references: Acts 10:30, 34, 35; Micah 3:4; Proverbs 28:9; Matthew 6:6-8. (3) What are some of the things you can pray about? Let your name be sanctified. Let your kingdom come. Let your will take place, as in heaven, also upon earth. Give us today our bread for this day; and forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And do not bring us into temptation, but deliver us from the wicked one.- Matt. 6:9-13 No matter what it is that we ask according to his will, he hears us.-I John 5:14. Additional references: Philippians 1:9; Acts 12:5; James 5:16. Optional questions for discussion: (a) When do you find time to pray? (b) How can you keep your prayers from becoming routine? (c) In your study of the Bible, what did learn about prayer that you did not know previously? has this affected your personal prayers to God? The Kingdom of God (1) By what right is Jehovah the Universal Sovereign? Upon hearing this they with one accord raised their voice to God and said: “Sovereign Lord, you are the One who made the he aven and the earth and the sea and all the things in them.”- Acts 4:24. You are worthy, Jehovah, even our God, to receive the glory and the honor and the power, because you created all things, and because of your will they existed and were created.-Rev. 4:11.Additional references: Psalm 90:2; 100:3; Hebrews 3: 4. (2) With whom has he shared rulership over his creation? Someone like a son of man happened to be coming; and to the Ancient of Days he gained access, and they brought him up close even before that One. And to him there was given rulership and dignity and kingdom.-Dan. 7:13, 1 1 The utterance of Jehovah to my Lord is: “Sit at my right hand until I place your enemies as a stool for your feet.” The rod of your strength Jehovah will send out of Zion, saying: “Go subduing in the midst of your enemies. -Ps. 110:1, 2. However, you are the ones that have stuck with me in my trials; and I make a covenant with you, just as my Father has made a covenant with me, for a kingdom, that you may eat and drink at my table in my kingdom, and sit on thrones to judge the twelve tribes of Israel.-Luke 22:28-30. Additional references: Revelation 5:9, 10; 14:1. (3) Is the Kingdom of God a condition or a government? In the days of those kings the God of heaven will set up a kingdorn that will never be brought to ruin. And the kingdom itself will not be passed on to any other people. It will crush and put an end to all these kingdoms; and it itself will stand to times indefinite. -Dan. 2:44. The very One itting in the heavens will laugh; Jehovah hirnself will hold them in derision. At that time he will speak to them in his anger and in his hot displeasure he will disturb them, saying: “I, even 1, have installed my king upon Zion, my holy mountain.”-Ps. 2:4-6. My kingdom is no part of this world. If my kingdom were part of this world, my attendants would have fought that I should not be delivered up to the Jews. But, as it is, my kingdom is not from this source.-John 18:36. Additional references: Isaiah 9:7; Luke 1:32, 33; Revelation 20:6. (4) What blessings will Kingdom rule bring for the earth and for mankind? And he will wipe out every tear from their eves, and death will be no more, neither will mourning nor outcry nor pain be anymore. The former things have passed away. -Rev. 21:4. The sucking child will certainly play upon the hole of the cobra; and upon the light aperture of a poisonous snake will a weaned child actually put his own hand. They will not do any harm or cause any ruin in all my holy mountain. -Isa. 11:8, 9. Additional references: Isaiah 26:9; 65:21, 22; Luke 23:43. (5) What does it mean to seek first the Kingdom? Stop storing up for yourselves treasures upon the earth . . .Rather, store up for yourselves treasures in heaven . . . No one can slave for two masters . . . You cannot slave for God and for Riches…. So never be anxious and say, “What are we to eat?” or, “What are we to drink?” or, “What are we to put on?” For all these are the things the nations are eagerly pursuing.-Matt. 6:19-32. Let us also put off every weight and the sin that easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, as we look intently at the Chief Agent and Perfecter of our faith, Jesus.-Heb. 12:1, 2. Additional references: Matthew 1-3:44-46; 16:24; 19:27-29. (6) How do we know that we have entered into the time of the end and that God’s Kingdom is ruling? While he was sitting upon the Mount of Olives, the disciPpes approached him privately, saying: “Tell us, When will these things be, and what will be the sign of your presence and of the conclusion of the system of things? “–Matt. 24:3. Now learn from the fig tree as an illustration this point: Just as soon as its young branch grows tender and it puts forth leaves, you know that summer is near. Liikewise, also you, when you see all these things, know that he is near at the doors. Truly I say to you that this generation will by no means pass away until all these things occur- Matt. 24:32-34. The rod of your strength Jehovah will send out of saying: “Go subduing in the midst of your enemies.” Ps.110:2. Additional references: Revelation 6:1-6; 12:1-12; Matt.24:1-25:46; 2 Timothy 3:1-5. Optional questions for discussion: (a) How do you personally endeavor to put God’s Kingdom first in your life? (b) In what practical ways can you demonstrate that you are a loyal advocate of God’s Kingdom? (c) As a loyal advocate of God’s Kingdom, what is your attitude toward involvement in the political affairs of the nations? Satan and the Demons (1) Who is Satan the Devil? Where did he and demons come from? So down the great dragon was hurled, the original serpent, the one called Devil and Satan, who is misleading the entire inhabited earth.-Rev. 12:9; compare Genesis :3: 1-5. That one was a manslayer when he began, and he did not stand fast in the truth, because truth is not in him. When he speaks the lie, he speaks according to his disposition, because he is a liar and the father of the lie -John 8:44. And the angels that did not keep their original position, but forsook their own proper dwelling place he has reserved with eternal bonds under dense darkness for the judgement of the great day.-Jude 6. Additional references: Job 1:6; 2:1; James 1:14, 15; Ephesians 6:11, 12; compare Ezekiel 28:12-15. (2) What warnings do we have in the Bible to help us avoid spiritistic practices?There should not be found in you anyone who … employs divination, a practicer of magic or anyone who looks for omens or a sorcerer, or one who binds others with a spell or anyone who consults a spirit medium or a professional foreteller of events or anyone who inquires of them. – Deut. 18:10, 11. But as for . . . those practicing spiritism …, their portion will be in the lake that burns with fire and tsulphur. This means the second death.-Rev. 21:8. Additional references: Acts 16:16-18; Galatians 5:19, 20. (3) How can we protect ourselves against the influences of Satan and the demons? Subject yourselves, therefore, to God; but oppose the Devil, and he will flee from you.-Jas, 4:7. Put on the complete suit of armor from God that you may be able to stand firm against the machinations of the Devil.-Eph. 6:11. Additional references: Matthew 6:13; Proverbs 18:10; Acts19:19, 20. (4) What do God’s words to Pharaoh indicate as to His reason for allowing Satan and his demons to continue living until now? For by now I could have thrust my hand out that I might strike you and your people with pestilence and that you might be effaced from the earth. But, in fact, for this cause I have kept you in existence, for the sake of showing you my power and in order to have my name declared in all the earth-Ex. 9:15, 16. Additional references: Romans 9:14-18; Job 1:9-12; 2:4-6; 2 Peter 3:9, 15. (5) What will become of Satan and his demons according to Jehovah’s judgment against them? I shall put enmity between you and the woman and between your seed and her seed. He will bruise you in the head and you will bruise him in the heel.-Gen. 3:15. Therefore, since the “young children” are sharers of blood and flesh, he also similarly partook of the same things, that through his death he might bring to nothing the one having the means to cause death, that is, the Devil.-Heb. 2:14. And the Devil who was misleading them was hurled into the lake of fire and sulphur, where both the wild beast and the false prophet already were.-Rev. 20:10. Additional references: Romans 16:20; Revelation 12:7-9; 20:1-3, 7-10. Optional questions for discussion: (a) What influence does Satan have on people today? (b) What are some of the spiritistic practices of people today, and why should we avoid these? The Soul, Sin and Death (1) What is the human soul? Can it die? Jehovah God proceeded to form the man out of dust from the ground and to blow into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man came to be a living soul.-Gen. 2:7. Look! All the souls-to me they belong. As the soul of the father so likekvise the soul of the son-to me they belong. The soul that is sinning-it itself will die.-Ezek. 18: 4, 20. Additional references: I Corinthians 15:45; Acts. 3: 23; Matthew 10:28. (2) What is sin? How did we all become sinners? Everyone who practices sin is also practicing lawlessness,and so sin is lawlessness-1 John 3:1. Through one man sin entered into the world and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men becausethey had all sinned.-Rom. 5:12. Additional references: Romans 3:23; 1 John 1:8; 1 Kings 8:46; Psalm 51:5. (3) What should you do if you commit a sin? My sin I finally confessed to you, and my error I did not cover. I said: “I shall make confession over my transgressions to Jehovah.”-Ps. 32:5. Is there anyone sick among you? Let him call the older men of the congregation to him, and let them pray him, greasing him with oil in the name of Jehovah. And the prayer of faith will make the indisposed one well, and Jehovah will raise him up. Also, if he has committed sins, it will be forgiven him. Therefore openly confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may get healed. A righteous man’s supplication, when it is at work, has much force. -Jas. 5:11-16. He that is covering over his transgressions will not succeed, but he that is confessing and leaving them will shown mercy. -Prov. 28:13. Additional references: Daniel 9:20; 1 John 1:9. (4) What should be our attitude toward committing sins? Do not let sin continue to rule as king in your mortal bodies that you should obey their desires. Neither go on presenting your members to sin as weapons of unrighteousness, but present yourselves to God as those alive from the dead, also your members to God as weapons of righteousness. For sin must not be master ove r you, seeing that you are not under law but under undeserved kindness. -Rom. 6:12-14. Additional reference: Romans 7:11-25. (5) What is death? The living are conscious that they will die; but as for the dead, they are conscious of nothing at all, neither do they anymore have wages, because the remembrance of them has been forgotten-Eccl. 9:5, 10.He said to them: “Lazarus our friend has gone to rest, but I am journeying there to awaken him from sleep.” Therefore the disciples said to him: “Lord, if he has gone to rest, he will get well.” Jesus had spoken, however, about his death. But they imagined he was speaking about taking rest in sleep. At that time, therefore, Jesus said to them outspokenly: “Lazarus has died.”-John 11:11-14. Additional references: Genesis 3:19; Psalm 6:5); 146:1; Ecclesiastes 3:19, 20; Isaiah 38:18. (6) Why do people die? The wages sin pays is death.-Rom. 6:23. In Adam all are dying.-I Cor. 15:22. Additional references: Romans 5:12, 17, 19; Job 14:1, 4. Optional questions for discussion: (a) How have you benefited from learning what the Bible teaches about the soul, sin and death? (b) What are some of the false religious doctrines that are disproved by what you have learned? (c) In what way do false religious teachings about the soul dishonor God? Resurrection (1) What hope is there for one who dies? I have hope toward God, which hope these men themselves also entertain, that there is going to be a resurrection of both the righteous and the unrighteous. -Acts 24:15. Do not marvel at this, because the hour is coming in which all those in the memorial tombs will hear his voice and come out, those who did good things to a resurrection of life, those who practiced vile things to a resurrection of judgment.-John 5:28, 29. Additional references: Acts 17:31; Revelation 20:13; Isaiah 25:8. (2) How many from among mankind will be raised to heavenly life with Jesus Christ? I saw, and, look! the Lamb standing upon the Mount Zion, and with him a hundred and forty-four thousand having his name and the name of his Father written on their foreheads. And they are singing as if a new song before the throne and before the four living creatures and the elders; and no one was able to master that song but the hundred and forty-four thousand, who have been bought from earth.-Rev. 14:1, 3. Additional references: Revelation 7:1-8; compare 12:32. (3) What will they do there? You made them to be a kingdom and priests to our God, and they are to rule as kings over the earth.-Rev. I saw thrones, and there were those who sat down on them, and power of judging was given them . . . . . and they came to life and ruled as kings with the Christ for a thousand years. Happy and holy is anyone having part in the first resurrection; over these the second death has no authority, but they will be priests of God and of the Christ, and will rule as kings with him for the thousand years.-Rev. 20:4, 6. Additional reference: I Corinthians 6:3. (4) What is the hope for the rest of mankind that will also be resurrected? And he went on to say: “Jesus, remember me when you get into your kingdom.” And he said to him: “Truly I tell you today, You will be with me in Paradise.”- Luke 23:42, 43. I saw the dead, the great and the small, standing before the throne, and scrolls were opened. But another scroll was opened; it is the scroll of life. And the dead were judged out of those things written in the scrolls according to their deeds. And the sea gave up those dead in it, and de ath and Hades gave up those dead in them, and they were judged individually according to their deeds.-Rev. 20:12, 13. Additional references: Isaiah 65:17, 20; Revelation 21 (5) Who will not be resurrected, and why? Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! because you traverse sea and dry land to make one proselyte, and when he becomes one you make him a subject for Gehenna twice as much so ass yourselves. Serpents, offspring of vipers, how are you to flee from the judgment of Gehenna?-Matt. 23:15, 33. When the Son of man arrives in his glory. . . . Separate people one from another, just as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. And he will put the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on his left . . . . . Then he will say, in turn, to those on his left, “Be on your way from me, you who have been cursed, into the everlasting fire prepared for the Devil and his angels.” . . . And these will depart into everlasting cutting-off. -Matt. 25:31-46. Additional references: 2 Peter 3:5-7; Jude 8-13. (6) Why should we hold firmly to our hope, in the resurrection of the dead? If in this life only we have hoped in Christ, we are of all men most to be pitied. If, like men, I have fought with wild beasts at Ephesus, of what good is it to me? If the dead are not to be raised up, “let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we are to die.”-1 Cor. 15:19, 32. And do not become fearful of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul; but rather be in fear of him that can destroy both soul and body in Gehenna.-Matt. 10:28. Additional references: Hebrews 2:14, 15; 11:17-19. optional questions for discussion: (a) Has learning about the resurrection hope enhanced your appreciation for Jehovah’s love? How so? (b) Why should you want to tell others about the resurrection hope? Marriage and Divorce (1) What is the Christian standard for marriage? In reply he said: “Did you not read that he who created them from the beginning made them male and female and said, ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and his mother and will stick to his wife, and the two will be one flesh’? So that they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore, what God has yoked together let no man put apart.”-Matt. 19:4-6. Additional references: 1 Timothy 3:2, 12; Genesis 2:24; 1 Corinthians 7:2. (2) What is the only Scriptural basis for divorce that frees one to remarry? I say to you that whoever divorces his wife, except on the ground of fornication, and marries another commits adultery.-Matt. 19:9. Additional refe rences: Mark 10:11, 12; Matthew 5:32; Luke 16:18. (3) What does the Bible say about married persons separating from each other? Therefore what God yoked together let no man put apart. -Mark 10:9. To the married people I give instructions, yet not I but the Lord, that a wife should not depart from her husband and a husband should not leave his wife.-I Cor. 7:10, 11, Additional references: I Corinthians 7:4, 5, 12-16. (4) Why should persons living together as husband and wife be properly married? Continue reminding them to be be in subjection and be obedient to governments and authorities as rulers. Titus 3: 1. Additional references: Matthew 22:21; Luke 2:1; Hebrews 13:4. Optional questions for discussion: (a) What benetits are derived from adhering to Jehovah’s standard for marriage as regards the husband? the wife? the children? the commmunity? (b) If you are a married person, are you sure that your marriage has been properly registered with the civil authorities? Sanctity of Life (1) Why is all life to be viewed as sacred? The God that made the world . . . gives to all persons life and breath and all things. For by him we have life and move and exist.-Acts 17:24, 25, 28, Christ Jesus . . . gave himself a corresponding ransom for all.-I Tim. 2:5, 6. Additional reference: Psalm 36:9. (2) How does Jehovah view (a) the unlawful shedding of human blood? (b) abortion? (c) suicide? Anyone shedding man’s blood, by man will his own blood be shed.-Gen. 9:6.But as for the … murderers…, their portion will be in the lake that burns with fire and sulphur. This is the second death.-Rev. 21:8. And in case men should struggle with each other and they really hurt a pregnant woman and her children do come out but no fatal accident occurs, he is to have damages imposed…. But if a fatal accident should occuur, you must give soul for soul.-Ex. 21:22, 23. Look! All the souls-to me they belong. As the the father so likewise the soul of the son-to me they belong. – Ezek. 18: 4. Additional references: Numbers 35:31; 2 Samuel Matthew 27:3-5. 3) How do the following scriptures show that Jehovah considers blood as something sacred? Only flesh with its soul-its blood-you must not eat. -Gen. 9:4. Whenever your soul craves it you may slaughter, and you must eat meat according to the blessing of Jehovah your God . . . Only the blood you must not eat. On the earth you should pour it out as water.-Deut. 12:15, 16. Any soul who eats any blood, that soul must be cut off from his people.-Lev. 7:27, Keep abstaining from things sacrificed to idols and from blood and from things strangled. — Acts 15:29, Additional references: Leviticus 17:11; 1 Chronicles 11:18,19; 1 Samuel 14:31-34; Romans 5:9. (4) What do the following scriptures reveal as to different ways a person could become bloodguilty? When I say to someone wicked, “You will positively die,” and you do not actually warn him . . . , his blood I shall ask back from your own hand.-Ezek. 3:18, 19. In case you build a new house, you must also make a parapet for your roof, that you may not place bloodguilt upon your house because someone falling might fall from it.-Deut. 22:8. Additional references: Acts 20:26, 27; 1 Corinthians 9:16. Optional questios for discussion: (a) How has the Scriptural view of blood affected your thinking on this matter? (b) As a Christian, what local foods or medical practices will you henceforth avoid? (c) How does the Bible teaching concerning the sanctity of life affect your view of certain dangerous sports or types of recreation? (d) Does God’s view of life and blood seem reasonable to you? (e) What stand should a Christian take if he is told that in order to save his own life or the life of a loved one a blood transfusion would be needed? PART 11 JEHOVAH’S RIGHTEOUS REQUIREMENTS-Mic. 6:8 In your study of the Bible you have learned the importance of bringing your life into harmony with Jehovah’s righteous standards. Responding to what you learned may have entailed a number of adjustments in your attitude toward life itself and in your personal conduct. Making such changes, however, is not what is referred to in the Bible as sacred service. Rather, Jehovah God accepts sacred service only from those whose lives have been made to reflect his righteousness. — 1 P(,I 14-16; Isa. 52:11. Now that you have brought your life into harmony with Jehovah’s standard of righteousness, you are in a position to render acceptable sacred service as a minister of the good news. Reviewing the following questions along with the quoted and cited Scripture references will help you fix clearly in mind Jehovah’s righteous requirements and will remind you of some of the things you can do in order to become one of Jehovah’s approved servants. This information will impress upon you the importance of doing all things with a good conscience and to Jehovah’s honor-2 Cor. I: 12; 1 Tim. 1:19; 1 Pet. 3:16, 21. Christian Law (1) According to Jesus, what are the two greatest commandments of the Mosaic Law? “You must love Jehovah your God with your whole and with your whole soul and with your whole mind.” This is the greatest and first commandment. The second, like it, is this, “You must love your neighbor as yourself.”- Matt. 22: 37-39. (2) Are Christians under the Mosaic Law covenant with its requirements of Sabbathkeeping and sacrifices? Christ is the end of the Law, so that everyone exercising faith may have righteousness.-Rom. 10:4. Let no man judge you in eating and drinking or in respect of a festival or of an observance of the new moon or of a sabbath; for those things are a shadow of the things to come, but the reality belongs to the Christ.-Col. 2:16, 17. Additional references: Galatians 3:24, 25; Colossions 14; Hebrews 8:6, 13. 0ptional questions for discussion: (a) In what way do you demonstrate that you love Jehovah with your whole mind, soul and strength? (b) In what practical ways do you show that you love your neighbor as yourself? Personal Relationships With Others (1) What Christian quality should outstandingly characterize our relationship with our spiritual brothers and sisters?I am giving you a new commandment, that you love one another; just as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all will know that you are my disciples, if you have love among yourselves. -John 13:34, 35. Clothe yourselves with love, for it is a perfect bond of union.-Col. 3:14. Additional references: James 2:8; 1 Corinthians 13:4-7. (2) What Christian principles should govern our dealings with persons who are not Jehovah’s Witnesses? Just as you want men to do to you, do the same way to them.-Luke 6:31. As long as we have time favorable for it, let us work what is good toward all.-Gal. 6:10. Additional references: Matthew 5:43-48; Romans 12:17,18; Luke 10:29-37. (3) How should Christians view the shortcomings of fellow believers? Continue putting up with one another and forgiving one another freely if anyone has a cause for complaint against another. Even as Jehovah freely forgave you, so do you also.-Col. 3:13. Above all things, have intense love for one another, because love covers a multitude of sins-1 Pet. 4:8. Additional references: Matthew 7:1-5; Proverbs 17:9; 19:11; Matthew 6:12. (4) If your brother sins against you personally and you find it difficult merely to overlook the transgression, or if his sin against you is of a serious nature and should not be covered over, what should you do? Moreover, if your brother commits a sin, go lay bare his fault between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have gained your brother. But if he does not listen, take along with you one or two more, in order that at the mouth Of two or three witnesses every matter may be established. If he does not listen to them, speak to the congregation. If he does not listen even to the congregation, let him be to you just as a man of the nations and as a tax collector. -Matt. 18:15-17. Additional references: Matthew 5:23, 24; Ephesians 4:25. 5) What is the fruitage of the spirit and how will cultivating it help us to maintain a fine relationship with others? The fruitage of the spirit is love, joy, peace, long-suffering, kindness, goodness, faith, mildness, self-control. –Gal 5: 22, 23. Additional reference: James 3:17, 18. Elevated Christian Morals (1) Why is moral cleanness of all individuals among Jehovah’s people important to every one of us?Many will follow their acts of loose conduct, and on account of these the way of the truth will be spoken of abusively-2 Pet. 2:2. Beloved ones, though I was making every effort to write you about the salvation we hold in common, I found it necessary to write you to exhort you to put up a hard fight for the faith that was once for all time delivered to the holy ones. My reason is that certain men have slipped in who have long ago been appointed by the Scriptures to this judgment, ungodly men, turning the undeserved kindness of our God into an excuse for loose conduct and proving false to our only Owner and Lord, Jesus Christ.-Jude 3, 4. Additional references: Romans 1:32; 1 Peter 1:16; Joshua 7:1-26. (2) Why must lying be avoided? The Devil … did not stand fast in the truth, because truth is not in him. When he speaks the lie, he speaks according to his own disposition, because he is a liar and the father of the lie.- John 8:44. As for … all the liars, their portion will be in the lake that burns with fire and sulphur.-Rev. 21:8. Additional references: Exodus 20:16; Proverbs 6: 12-19; 2 Corinthians 6:4, 7. (3) What is the Christian view of stealing? Let none of you suffer as a murderer or a thief. I Peter 4:15. Let the stealer steal no more, but rather let him do hard work, doing with his hands what is good work, that he have something to distribute to someone in need.—Eph. 4: 28. 4) Does the Bible prohibit the use of alcoholic beverages in moderation? Go, eat your food with rejoicing and drink your wine with a good heart, because already the true God has found pleasure in your works.-Ececl. 9:7. Additional references: Psalm 104:15; 1 Timothy 5:23. (5) What is the Christian view of drunkenness? What! Do you not know that unrighteous persons will not inherit God’s kingdom? Do not be misled. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers. . . . nor greedy persons, nor drunkards … will inherit God’s kingdom-1 Cor. 6:9, 10. Ministerial servants should likewise be serious. . . . not giving themselves to a lot of wine.-1 Tim. 3:8. Additional references: 1 Corinthians 5:11; 1 Peter 4:3;1 Timothy 3:2, 3. (6) Why should Christians abstain from the nonmedical use of addictive or mind-altering drugs?Consequently I entreat you by the compassions of God, brothers, to present your bodies a sacrifice living, holy, acceptable to God, a sacred service with your power of reason. And quit being fashioned after this system of things, but be transformed by making your mind over, that you may prove to yourselves the good and acceptable and perfect will of God.-Rom. 12:1, 2. Additional references: Revelation 21:8, Int; 1 Corinthians16:13; Proverbs 3:21-23; 5:1, 2; 1 Peter 4:7. (7) What additional reasons are there for not using tobacco, betel nut or other similar addictive substances that are known to be harmful to physical and mental health? Therefore, since we have these promises, beloved ones, let us cleanse ourselves of every defilement of flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in God’s fear.-2 Cor. 7:1. Additional references: James 1:21; 1 Peter 1:16. (8) What does the Bible say about fornication, adultery, sexual relations with another person of the same sex (homosexuality) and other unlawful sexual conduct? Now the works of the flesh are manifest, and they are fornication, uncleanness, loose conduct … Those who practice such things will not inherit God’s kingdom.-Gal. 5:19-21. What! Do you not know that unrighteous persons will not inherit God’s kingdom? Do not be misled. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men kept for unnatural purposes, nor men who lie with men … will inherit God’s kingdom-1 Cor. 6:9-11. God gave them up to disgraceful sexual appetites, for both their females changed the natural use of thernselves one contrary to nature; and likewise even the males left the natural use of the female and became violently inflamed in their lust toward one another, males with males, working what is obscene and receiving in themselves the full recompense, which was due for their error.-Rom. 1:26, 27. Let marriage be honorable among all, and the marriage bed be without defilement, for God will judge fornicators and adulterers. -Heb. 13:4. Additional references: Ephesians 5:5; 1 Peter 4:3; Mark 7:20-23; Revelation 21:8. (9) By adhering to what Bible counsel will you be able to ward off temptations and pressures that would induce you to engage in any form of sexual immorality, including sexual perversions? Keep your minds fixed on the things above, not on things upon the earth. Deaden, therefore, your body members that are upon the earth as respects fornication, uncleanness, sexual appetite, hurtful desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry.-Col. 3:2, 5. Finally, brothers, whatever things are true, whatever things are of serious concern, whatever things are righteous, whatever things are chaste, whatever things are lovable, whatever things are well spoken of, whatever virtue there is and whatever praiseworthy thing there is, continue considering these things.-Phil. 4:8. Additional references: Romans 12:2; Ephesians 4:22-2 Colossians 3:9, 10.(10) What is gambling? Why would a Christian avoid becoming involved in any form of gambling? But you men are those leaving Jehovah, those forgetting my holy mountain, those setting in order a table for the god of Good Luck and those filling up mixed wine for the god Destiny.-Isa. 65:11. Do you not know that unrighteous persons will not inherit God’s kingdom? Do not be misled. Neither … thieves, nor greedy persons . . . will inherit God’s kingdorn.-l Cor. 9, 10. Additional references: I Corinthians 5:11; 15:33. (11) If a person in weakness commits a serious sin but he wants help to be restored to Jehovah’s favor, what action should he take immediately? My sin I finally confessed to you, and my error I did not cover. I said: “I shall make confession over my transgressions to Jehovah.”-Ps. 32:5. Is there anyone suffering evil among you? Let him carry on prayer. Is there anyone in good spirits? Let him sing psalms. Is there anyone sick among you? Let him call the olde r men of the congregation to him, and let them pray over him, greasing him with oil in the name of Jehovah. And the prayer of faith will make the indisposed one well, and Jehovah will raise him up. Also, if he has committed sins, it will be forgiven him.-Jas. 5:13-15. Additional references: Proverbs 28:13; 1 John 2:1, 2; Galatians 6: 1. (12) in addition to confessing one’s own sins, what personal responsibility rests upon each Christian with regard to reporting serious wrongdoing by others that could threaten the spiritual or moral cleanness of the congregation? Now in case a soul sins in that he has heard public cursing and he is a witness or he has seen it or has come to know of it, if he does not report it, then he must answer for his error.- Lev. 5:1. He that is partner with a thief is hating his own soul. An oath involving a curse he may hear, but he reports nothing. -Prov. 29:24. Additional references: Deuteronomy 13:6-8; 1 Corinthians1:11; 5:1. (13) What is the proper viewpoint to have when one is Scripturally reproved? The discipline of Jehovah, 0 my son, do not reject; and do not abhor his reproof-Prov. 3:11. For the commandment is a lamp, and a light the law is, and the reproofs of discipline are the way of life.-Prov. 6:23. Additional references: Proverbs 15:32; Revelation 3:19; Hebrews 12:5-11. (14) What action does the congregation take when a person in its midst proves to be a persistent and unrepentant violator of God’s commandments? In my letter I wrote you to quit mixing in company with fornicators, not meaning entirely with the fornicators of this world or the greedy persons and extortioners or idolaters. Otherwise, you would actually have to get out of the world. But now I am writing you to quit mixing in company with anyone called a brother that is a fornicator or a greedy person or an idolater or a reviler or a drunkard or an extortioner, not even eating with such a man. For what do I have to do with judging those outside? Do you not judge those while God judges those outside? “Remove the wicked one from among yourselves.”-1 Cor. 5:9-13. As for a man that promotes a sect, reject him after first and a second admonition; knowing that such a man has been turned out of the way and is sinning, he being self-condemned. – Titus 3:10, 11. Additional references: I Corinthians 5:5, 6; Joshua Optional questions for discussion: (a) Do you think that Jehovah’s moral standards and requirements for his servants are reasonable? (b) How have you personally benefited from what you have learned about elevated Christian morals? (c) Why would a person have to conform his way of life to Jehovah’s standards before he could be accepted for Christian baptism? Idolatry (1) What is idolatry? What warnings does the Bible give concerning idolatry? Guard yourselves from idols.-I John 5:21. You must not make for yourself a carved image or a form like anything that is in the heavens above or that is on the earth underneath or that is in the waters under the earth. You must not bow down to them nor be induced to serve them, because I Jehovah your God am a God exacting exclusive devotion.-Ex. 20:4, 5. Additional references: Jeremiah 10:14, 15; Psalm 115: Isaiah 42:8; 48:11. (2) What are various forms of idolatry that Christians must guard against in this modern world? Now while Saul was waiting for them in Athens, his spirit within him came to be irritated at beholding that the city was full of idols. Paul now stood in the midst of the Areopagus and said: “Men of Athens, I behold that in all things you seem to be more given to the fear of the deities than others are.”-Acts 17:16, 22. Nebuchadnezzar the king made an image of gold . . . the herald was crying out loudly: “To you it is being said,…O peoples…. that…you fall down and worship the image of gold that Nebuchadnezzar the king has set up.” -Dan.3: 1-5. On a set day Herod clothed himself with royal raiment and sat down upon the judgment seat and began giving them a public address. In turn the assembled people began shouting “A god’s voice, and not a man’s!” Instantly the angel of Jehovah struck him, because he did not give the glory to God, and he became eaten up with worms and expired. -Acts 12:21-23. If anyone worships the wild beast and its image, and receives a mark on his forehead or upon his hand, he will also drink of the wine of the anger of God.-Rev. 14:9, 10. Additional references: I Samuel 15:22, 23; Colossians 3:5.Separate From the World (1) According to the Bible, who is “the ruler of the world” and the god of this system of things”? I shall not speak much with you anymore, for the ruler of the world is coming. And he has no hold on me [Jesus Christ].-John 14:30. The god of this system of things has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, that the illumination of the glorious good news about the Christ, who is the image of God, might not shine through-2 Cor. 4:4. Additional references: I John 5:19; Revelation 12:9. (2) What is the position of Christians as to this world alienated from God? They are no part of the world, just as I am no part of the world.-John 17:16. Do you not know that the friendship with the world is enmity with God? Whoever, therefore, wants to be a friend of the world is constituting himself an enemy of God.-Jas. 4:4. Additional reference: John 15:19-21. (3) What was Jesus’ attitude toward participation in the political affairs of the world? The Devil took him along to an unusually high mountain, and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory, and he said to him: “All these things I will give you if you fall down and do an act of worship to me.” Then Jesus said to him: “Go away, Satan! For it is written, ‘It is Jehovah your God you must worship, and it is to him alone you must render sacred servi ce.’ “-Matt. 4:8-10. Jesus, knowing they were about to come and seize him to make him king, withdrew again into the mountain all alone. -John 6:15. Additional reference: John 18:36. (4) When a person separates himself from tbe world and becomes a Christian, what treatment might he expect from those remaining in the world? All those desiring to live with godly devotion in association with Christ Jesus will also be persecuted-2 Tim. 3:12. If you were part of the world, the world would be fond what is its own. Now because you are no part of the but I have chosen you out of the world, on this account the world hates you…. If they have persecuted me, they will persecute you also.-John 15:19-21. Additional reference: Luke 21:12, 13. (5) How does being separate from the world affect the secular employment of a Christian? Let the stealer steal no more, but rather let him do hard work, doing with his hands what is good work, that he have something to distribute to someone in need-Eph. -1 The Devil … is a liar and the father of the lie.-John 8: What! Do you not know that unrighteous persons will not inherit God’s kingdom? Do not be misled. Neither fornicators nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men kept for unnatural purposes, nor men who lie with men, nor thieves, nor greedy persons, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit God’s kingdom-1 Cor. 6:9, 10. He will certainly render judgment among many peoples, and set matters straight respecting mighty nations far away. And they will have to beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning shears. They will not lift up sword, nation against nation, neither will they learn war anymore. -Mic. 4:2, 3. Write them to abstain … from blood.-Acts 15:20. Jesus, knowing they were about to come and seize him to make him king, withdrew again into the mountain all alone. -John 6:15. I heard another voice out of heaven say: “Get out of her [Babylon the Great], my people, if you do not want to share with her in her sins, and if you do not want to receive part of her plagues.”-Rev. 18:4. Additional references: Isaiah 2:2-4; John 17:16; Romans13:8-10; 1 Corinthians 7:23. (6) Adhering to what additional Bible principles will help a Christian to remain separate from the world with regard to his choice of entertainment and recreation? Do not be misled. Bad associations spoil useful habits.- Cor. 15:33. Do Dot be loving either the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him; because everything in the world-the desire of the flesh and the desire of the eyes and the showy display of one’s means of life -does not originate with the Father, but originates with the world. Furthermore, the world is passing away and so is its desire, but he that does the will of God remains forever-1 John 2:15-17. So keep strict watch that how you walk is not as unwise but as wise persons, buying out the opportune time for yourselves, because the days are wicked. On this account cease becoming unreasonable, but go on perceiving what the will of Jehovah is. Also, do not be getting drunk with wine, in which there is debauchery, but keep getting filled with spirit, speaking to yourselves with psalms and praises to God and spiritual songs, singing and accompanying yourselves with music in your hearts to Jehovah, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ giving thanks always for all things to our God and Father.-Eph. 5:15-20. Let fornication and uncleanness of every sort or greediness not even be mentioned among you, just as it befits holy people.-Eph. 5:3. Additional references: Philippians 4:8; Ephesians 5:4; Colossians 3:5, 6; Proverbs 26:18, 19.Optional questions for discussion: (a) How has your study of the Bible helped you to keep yourself separate from the world? (b) What pressures or enticements have you had to resist in order to come into a good relationship with Jehovah and maintain it? (c) What Bible counsel have you found to be particularly helpful in maintaining separateness from the world? Interfaith Would it be proper for true Christians to share in worship with other religious groups? I heard another voice out of heaven say: “Get out of her, my people, if you do not want to share with her in her sins, and if you do not want to receive part of her plagues. For her sins have massed together clear up to heaven, and God has called her acts of injustice to mind.”– Rev. 18:4, 5. Additional references: I Corinthians 10:20; 2 Corinthians 6:14-18; Matthew 7:13, 14, 21-23; 2 Timothy 3:2, 5; Numbers 25-.1, 2. Optional questions for discussion: (a) What are some examples of interfaith activity that true Christians should avoid? (b) Why would a person have to make sure that he has cut off all association with false religious organizations before presenting himself for baptism as one of Jehovah’s es? (c) What would this include? Holidays and Celebrations (1) Are Christians under obligation to observe certain days as holidays? Now that you have come to know God, or rather now that you have come to be known by God, how is it that you are turning back again to the weak and beggarly elementary things and want to slave for them over again? You are scrupulously observing days and months and seasons and years. I fe ar for you, that somehow I have toiled to no purpose respecting you.- Gal. 4:9-11. Additional reference: Colossians 2:16, 17. (2) What is the only religious celebration that Christians are commanded to observe? Also, he took a loaf, gave thanks, broke it, and gave to them, saying: “This means my body which is to be given in your behalf. Keep doing this in remembrance of me” -Luke 22:19. Additional reference: 1 Corinthians 11:23-26. (3) What are some of the Bible principles that will help you to determine whether or not you should observe or participate in celebrations that are popular in your community? They are no part of the world, just as I am no part of the world.-John 17:16. Do not be loving either the world or the things in world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father not in him; because everything in the world-the desirc the flesh and the desire of the eyes and the showy display of one’s means of life -does not originate with the Father, but originates with the world. Furthermore, the world is passing away and so is its desire, but he that does the will of God remains forever.-I John 2:15-17. The time that has passed by is sufficient for you to worked out the will of the nations when you proceeded in deeds of loose conduct, lusts, excesses with wine, revelries, drinking matches, and illegal idolatries-1 Pet. 4:3. Additional references: 1 Corinthians 15:33; 2 Corininthians 6:14-17; Galatians 5:19-21; Romans 13:13. 4) What mention is made in the Bible of birthday celebrations? How does this affect your view of birthday celebrations? But when Herod’s birthday was being celebrated the daughter of Herodias danced at it and pleased Herod so much that he promised with an oath to give her whatever she asked. Then she, unde r her mother’s coaching, said: “Give me here upon a platter the head of John the Baptist.” Grieved though he was, the king out of regard for his oaths and for those reclining with him commanded it to be given; and he sent and had John beheaded in the prison. And his head was brought on a platter and given to the maiden, and she brought it to her mother.-Matt. 14:6-11. Additional references: Genesis 40:20-22; Ecclesiastes 7:1,8. Optional questions for discussion: (a) What are some of the holidays or celebrations popular in your community that true Christians avoid? (b) What do you need to do to keep from getting involved in worldly holidays or celebrations that run counter to Christian principles? (c) If you have minor children, how can you help them avoid unchristian practices related to worldly holidays? Baptism (1) Why do Jehovah’s Witnesses baptize in water those who embrace the Christian faith? Go therefore and make disciples of people of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Fathe r and of the Son and of the holy spirit.-Matt. 28:19. He commanded them to be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ.-Acts 10:48. Additional references: Matthew 3:13-17; 1 Peter 2:21; Acts 8:12, 35-38. (2) Who should be baptized? When? Those who embraced his word heartily were baptized. -Acts 2:41. When they believed Philip, who was declaring the good news of the kingdom of God and of the name of Jesus Christ, they proceeded to be baptized.-Acts 8: 12. Repent, and lot each one of you be baptized in the name Of Jesus Christ.-Acts 2:38. Additional references: Hebrews 10:5-7; Luke 3:21, 23; 1 Peter 3:21. 3) What does it mean to be baptized in the name of (a) the Father? (b) the Son? (c) the holy spirit? You, whose name is Jehovah, you alone are the Most over all the earth.-Ps. 83:18. God exalted him to a superior position and kindly gave him the name that is above every other name, so that in the name of Jesus every knee should bend of those in heaven and those on earth and those under the ground, and every tongue should openly acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord to the glory of God the Father.-Phil. 2:9-11. I will request the Father and he will give you another helper to be with you forever, the spirit of the truth.-John 14:16, 17. Additional references: Revelation 1:5; Joel 2:28, 29. Optional questions for discussion: (a) Why do you want to be baptized? (b) Have you already brought your life harmony with Jehovah’s righteous requirements according to what you have learned from your study of the Bible? (c) Are you at present sharing the good news of the Kingdom with others, demonstrating that you understand that this is Jehovah’s will for you at this time? (d) Have you expressed to Jehovah in prayer your desire to be one of his dedicated witnesses and to serve him in unity with his organized people? PART III SUBMISSION TO JEHOVAH’S ARRANGEMENT OF THINGS While still in Eden the first man and woman joined the rebellion led by “the original serpent,” Satan the Devil. (Rev. 12:9) They ceased being submissive to Jehovah’s arrangement of things. Having been introduced to a course of independance from God, they set out on their own. From that time forward the course taken by man has only served to confirm the truthfulness of Jeremiah’s words recorded at Jeremiah 10:23, where we read: “I well know, 0 Jehovah, that to earthling man his way does not belong. It does not belong to man who is walking even to direct his steps.’ Through your study of the Bible you learned about Jehovah’s purpose to bring all things back into subjection to himself, just as they were in the beginning. (Eph. 1:8-10; 1 Cor. 15:24- 28) Having reached this point in your study you are also desirous of finding your place in Jehovah’s arrangement of things and of being submissive to his rule. The following questions and related Scripture references will help you to examine your own understanding of submission to Jehovah’s arrangements as regards congregation organization, Christian family life and the political rulers of the day. Submission in the Congregation Arrangement (1) What is the basic principle underlying Jehovah’s arrangement Of things within the Christian congregation? But I want you to know that the head of every man is the Christ; in turn the head of a woman is the man; in turn the head of the Christ is God-1 Cor. 11:3. He (Jesus Christ] is the head of the body, the congregation-Col. 1:18. Additional references: Ephesians 1:22, 23; Hebrews 12:9; James 4:7. (2) Why is there a particular need for submitting to Jehovah’s arrangement of things in the Christian congregation today? For God is a God, not of disorder, but of peace. . . . But let all things take place decently and by arrangement. -1 Cor. 14:33, 40. You, though, keep your senses in all things,…do the work of an evangelizer, fully accomplish your ministry. -2 Tim. 4:5. Additional references: Ephesians 4:16; 1 Corinthians 12:18,28. (3) What are some examples of Jesus’ disciples submitting to his instructions in order to carry out their ministry in an orderly way? Now he summoned the twelve, and he initiated sending them out two by two, and he began to give them authority over the unclean spirits. And the apostles gathered together before Jesus and reported to him all the things they done and taught.-Mark 6:7, 30. After these things the Lord designated seventy others, and sent them forth by twos in advance of him into every city and place to which he himself was going to come.-Luke 10: 1. Additional references: Luke 9:14-17; Matthew 10:1-23. (4) How does Jesus exercise headship over the Christian congregation today? Who really is the faithful and discreet slave whom his master appointed over his domestics, to give them them food at the proper time? Happy is that slave if his master on arriving finds him doing so. Truly I say to you, He will appoint him over all his belongings. -Matt. 24:45-47. But the helper, the holy spirit, which the Father will send in my name, that one will teach you all things and bring back to your minds all the things I told you.-John 14:26 Additional references: Luke 12:42-44; John 16:12-14. (5) By what visible means is Christ’s headship represented in the congregation? However, from Miletus he sent to Ephesus and called for the older men of the congregation. When they got to him he said to them: . . . “Pay attention to yourselves and to all the flock, among which the holy spirit has appointed you overseers, to shepherd the congregation of God.”-Acts 20:17, 18, 28. Therefore, to the older men among you I give this exhortation…. Shepherd the flock of God in your care, not compulsion, but willingly; neither for love of dishonest gain but eagerly; neither as lording it over those who are God’s heritance, but becoming examples to the flock-1 Pet. 5:13 Additional references: Titus 1:5; Isaiah 32:1, 2. (6) How do members of the congregation demonstrate submission to the headship of Christ in the congregation? Remember those who are taking the lead among you, have spoken the word of God to you, and as you contemplate how their conduct turns out imitate their faith.-Heb. 13: 7 Be obedient to those who are taking the lead among you and be submissive, for they are keeping watch over your souls as those who will render an account; that they may do this with joy and not with sighing, for this would be damaging to you.-Heb. 13:17. Additional references: 1 Timothy 5:17; 1 Thessalonians 5:12, 13; 1 Corinthians 16:16. optional questions for discussion: (a) Are you able to identify “the faithful and discreet slave” today? How? (b) What is the Governing Body of the Christian congregation? What purpose does it serve? (See Acts 6:1-6; 8:14; 15:1-29; 16:4, 5.) (c) What legal agencies are used by the Governing Body today to accomplish the publishing of the good news worldwide? (d) Why would submitting to Jehovah’s arrangement in the congregation include giving material support to the work of the congregation to the extent of your ability? Submission in Christian Family Life (1) In God’s arrangement of things, who is the head of the married woman? You wives, be in subjection to your husbands, as it is becoming in the Lord.-Col. 3:18. Let wives be in subjection to their husbands as to the Lord, because a husband is head of his wife as the Christ also is head of the congregation, he being a savior of this body.-Eph. 5:22, 23. Additional reference: Titus 2:4, 5. (2) How should a husband exercise headship over his wife? Whose example does he have to follow as a pattern? In this way husbands ought to be loving their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself, for no man ever hated his own flesh; but he feeds and cherishes it, as the Christ also does the congregation. -Eph. 5:28, 29. You husbands, keep on loving your wives and do not be bitterly angry with them.-Col. 3:19. Additional reference: 1 Peter 3:7. (3) Is the wife whose husband is not a believer freed from his headship? In like manner, you wives, be in subjection to your own husbands, in order that, if any are not obedient to the word, they may be won without a word through the conduct of their wives, because of having been eyewitnesses of your chaste conduct together with deep respect-1 Pet. 3:1, 2. Additional references: Romans 7:2; 1 Corinthians 7:10. 4) Who is responsible before God for the training and disciplining of children? And you, fathers, do not be irritating your children, but go on bringing them up in the discipline and mental-regulating of Jehovah.-Eph. 6:4.Additional references: Colossians 3:21; Proverbs 13:24;29: 15; Deuteronomy 6:6, 7. (5) What responsibility do children have in the family arrangement? Children, be obedient to your parents in union with the Lord, for this is righteous: “Honor your father and your mother”; which is the first command with a promise, “That it may go well with you and you may endure a long time the earth.”-Eph. 6:1-3. You children, be obedient to your parents in everything for this is well-pleasing in the Lord.- Col. 3:20. Additional references: Deuteronomy 5:16; Proverbs I4:1; 6:20; 23:22. Optional questions for discussion: (a) If you are a married woman, in what way can you demonstrate your submission to your husband? (b) Does this seem to be righteous and just to you? (c) If your husband does not appreciate your cooperation in this regard, how do you still benefit? (d)If you are a man with family responsibilities, what worldly attitudes must you avoid if you are to exercise your headship in a Christlike manner? (e) If you are a minor child, what benefits will come to you and to the family as a result of your being submissive to your parents? (f) What factors may it make it difficult for you to be submissive at times? Submission to the Civil Authorities (1) What is the proper attitude for Christians to maintain toward worldly rulers? Let every soul be in subjection to the superior authorities, for there is no authority except by God; the existing authorities stand placed in their relative positions by God. -Rom. 13:1. Continue reminding them to be in subjection and be obedient to governments and authorities as rulers.-Titus 3: 1. Additional references: 1 Peter 2:13, 14; Daniel 6:5;26:2, 3; 1 Timothy 2:1-3 (2) Must a Christian pay all taxes and assessments demanded by law? Render to all their dues, to him who calls for the tax, the tax; to him who calls for the tribute, the tribute; to him who calls for fear, such fear; to him who calls for honor, such honor -Rom. 13:7. Additional reference: Luke 20:21-25. (3) Are there any circumstances under which a Christian would refuse to obey the worldly rulers? With that they called them and charged them, nowhere to make any utterance or to teach upon the basis of the name of Jesus. But in reply Peter and John said to them: “Whether it is righteous in the sight of God to listen to you rather than to God, judge for yourselves. But as for us, we cannot stop speaking about the things we have seen and heard.” -Acts 4:18-20. In answer Peter and the other apostles said: ‘Ve must obey God as ruler rather than men.”- Acts 5:29. Additional references: Isaiah 2:4; Daniel 3:16-18; 6:4-24; Exodus 1:15-20. (4) Should Christians comply with legal requirements such as the registering of marriages and births, respond to census inquiries or obtain required licenses and permits that do not conflict with God’s laws? Now in those days a decree went forth . . . for all the inhabited earth to be registered … Of course, Joseph also went up from Galilee … to get registered with Mary, who had been given him in marriage.-Luke 2:1-5. Continue reminding them to be in subjection and be obedient to governments and authorities as rulers.-Titus 3:1. Additional references: 1 Timothy 3:2, 9; compare Acts 18:1-3; Hebrews 13:4. Optional questions for discussion: (a) Why is it important for you to be submissive to the civil authorities even when their rule may seem to be oppressive? (b) How can you be submissive to the political rulers without violating Christian neutrality? PART IV WORKS THAT DEMONSTRATE CHRISTIAN FAITH-Jas. 2:18 You have already observed in your association with Jehovah’s Witnesses that they are a busy people, “always having plenty to do in the work of the Lord.” (1 Cor. 15:58) The very fact that you have been able to take in accurate knowledge about Jehovah and his purposes is an evidence of the diligent efforts of Jehovah’s dedicated people in your behalf. By the time you have come to consider this portion of the book Organized to Accomplish Our Ministry with the overseers of the local congregation, you should already be giving clear evidence of your heart appreciation for what you have learned. You show this appreciation by attending and participating in all the congregation meetings to the extent of your ability. Also, you should already be having a regular share in the Kingdom-preaching work, helping others to come to know Jehovah and what he is doing for mankind. (Matt. 24:128:19, 20) It is not sufficient for a person merely to know what is right and be able to answer specific questions in harmony with what is true.Having knowledge is really of little value unless it is applied in a practical way, and this for the benefit of others as well as for oneself.-John17; 1 John 5:3. Addressing his words to sincere inquirers Jehovah’s prophet Micah wrote: “With what shall I confront Jehovah? With what shall I bow myself to God on high? Shall I confront him with whole burnt offerings, with calves a year old? Will Jehovah be pleased with thousands of rams, with tens of thousands of torrents of oil? Shall I give my firstborn son for my revolt, the fruitage of my belly for the sin of my soul? He has told you, earthling man, what is good. And what is Jehovah sking back from you but to exercise justice and to love kindness and to be modest in walking with your God?” (Mic. 6:6-8) Yes, Jehovah wants you to walk with him in modesty, give him your heart and take pleasure in doing his will.-Prov. 23:26. This section of questions will help you to identify clearly and fix in mind Jehovah’s requirements as to Christian works. It will help you to be sure that you have made a proper dedication of your life to Jehovah God before submitting to water baptism. You can be sure that Jehovah appreciates your sincere response to his undeserved kindness expressed in your behalf. Relationship Between Works and Faith Why must approved works accompany our Christian faith? Faith, if it does not have works, is dead in itself. Nevertheless, a certain one will say: “You have faith, and I have works. Show me your faith apart from the works, and I shall show you my faith by my works.” Indeed, as the body without spirit is dead, so also faith without works is dead. -Jas. 2:17, 18, 26. The conclusion of the matter, everything having been heard, is: Fear the true God and keep his commandments. For this is the whole obligation of man. For the true God himself will bring every sort of work into the judgment in relation to every hidden thing, as to whether it is good or bad.-Ecel. 12:13, 14. Additional references: John 6:27-29; 13:17; James 1:27; 4:17; compare Matthew 7:15-27. Optional questions for discussion: (a) In what way are Christian works different from works of the Law? (b) Why would it not be proper for us to compare our works of faith with those of fellow believers? Christian Meetings (1) Why is it beneficial to attend the meetings arranged by the congregation? Let us consider one another to incite to love and fine works, not forsaking the gathering of ourselves together, as some have the custom, but encouraging one another, and all the more so as you behold the day drawing near.-Heb. 10:24, 25. Additional references: Proverbs 18:1; Romans 1:11, 12. (2) What is the proper attitude for us to have toward opportunities to meet together with our spiritual brothers and sisters? I rejoiced when they were saying to me: “To the house Jehovah let us go.”-Ps. 122:1. Additional references: I Corinthians 16:19, 20; Romans 16:16; 1:11. (3) What information beneficial to Jehovah’s people is considered at congregation meetings?And when this letter has been read among you, arrange that it also be read in the congregation of the Laodiceans, and that you also read the one from Laodicea.-Col. 4:16. Who really is the faithful steward, the discreet one, whom his master will appoint over his body of attendants to keep giving them their measure of food supplies at the proper time?-Luke 12:42. Additional references: Revelation 2:1; 3:1; Acts 13: 1; 1 Timothy 5:17. (4) Whose teaching and instruction is given at the congregation meetings? And all your sons will be persons taught by Jehovah, the peace of your sons will be abundant.-Isa. 54:13. Additional references: Job 36:22; Isaiah 30:20; Romans 15:4. (5) Why should you endeavor to participate in congregation meetings by commenting and otherwise as you have opportunity? I will declare your name to my brothers; in the middle of the congregation I shall praise you.- Ps. 22:22. Let us consider one another to incite to love and fine works.-Heb. 10:24. Additional reference: Romans 10:9, 10. (6) Who should attend the congregation meetings order to be instructed in righteousness? Congregate the people, the men and the women and little ones . . . , in order that they may listen and in order that they may learn, as they must fear Jehovah God and take care to carry out all the words of this law. -Deut. 31:12. Additional references: Nehemiah 8:1-3; compare Acts 16:1, 2 with 2 Timothy 3:14, 15. optional questions for discussion: (a) What effort have you personally put forth in order to be in regular attendance at congregation meetings? (b) How have you benefited from regular association with Jehovah’s Witnesses at congregation nieetings? (c) Why is it beneficial for you to prepare well for each congregation meeting? How do you find time to do so? Our Kingdom Ministry (1) What urgent work does the Bible set out for all Christians at this time? This good news of the kingdom will be preached in all the inhabited earth for a witness to all the nations; and then the end will come.-Matt. 24:14. Go therefore and make disciples of people of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the holy spirit, teaching them to observe all the things I have commanded you.-Matt. 28:19, 20. Additional references: Mark 13:10; Acts 1:8; 2:17, 18. (2) According to the following scriptures, what are some of the various ways in which our ministry may be accomplished? He went journeying from city to city and from village to village, preaching and declaring the good news of the kingdom of God.-Luke 8:1. A certain woman named Martha received him as guest into the house. This woman also had a sister called Mary, who, however, sat down at the feet of the Lord and kept listening to his word.-Luke 10:38, 39. Now Jesus, tired out from the journey, was sitting at the fountain just as he was. . . . A woman of Samaria came to draw water. . . . Jesus said to her: “Everyone drinking from this water will get thirsty again. Whoever drinks from the water that I will give him will never get thirsty at all.” -John 4:6-14. Consequently he began to reason in the synagogue with the Jews and the other people who worshiped God and every day in the marketplace with those who happened to be on hand.-Acts 17:17. I did not hold back from telling you any of the that were profitable nor from teaching you publicly and from house to house.-Acts 20:20. Additional references: Matthew 10:11-14; Acts 5:42; 1 Proverbs 1:20, 21. (3) Is this work done in our own strength? We have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the power beyond what is normal may be God’s and not that out ourselves-2 Cor. 4:7. Additional references: 2 Timothy 4:17; Revelation 14: 6; Matthew 10:19, 20; Philippians 4:13. (4) Why should you be willing to preach the good news to all kinds of people in your assigned territory? At this Peter opened his mouth and said: “For a certainty I perceive that God is not partial, but in every nation the man that fears him and works righteousness is acceptable him.”-Acts 10:34, 35. Additional references: Matthew 24:14; Revelation 14: 6; Psalm 49:1, 2. (5) Why should you take most seriously your responsibility to share the good news with others? I call you to witness this very day that I am clean from the blood of all men, for I have not held back from telling you all the counsel of God.-Acts 20:26, 27.Additional references: I Corinthians 9:16; Ezekiel 33: 8; 1 Timothy 4:16. Optional questions for discussion: (a) Are you at present, having a regular share each month in Kingdom service, preaching the good news to others? (b) Is someone helping you and training you to be effective in the field ministry? (c) Why is working from house to house in the field ministry so important? (d) When you find a person who manifests genuine interest in the good news, what further assistance should you endeavor to give that person? (e) While exerting yourself in the field ministry, why would it be wrong you to make comparisons between your ministry and that of others? Honoring Jehovah With Your Valuable Things (1) What pattern set in ancient Israel serves as a model for giving material support to the Kingdom work today? And the people gave way to rejoicing over their making voluntary offerings, for it was with a complete heart that they made voluntary offerings to Jehovah; and even David the king himself rejoiced with great joy-1 Chron. 29:9. Additional references: Exodus 35:21, 22, 29; Proverbs 3:9, 10; Malachi 3:10. (2) (2) What lesson did Jesus teach about generous giving? And he sat down with the treasury chests in view and began observing how the crowd was dropping money into the treasury chests; and many rich people were dropping in many coins. Now a poor widow came and dropped in two small coins, which have very little value. So he called his disciples to him and said to them: “Truly I say to you that this poor widow dropped in more than all those dropping money into the treasury chests; for they all dropped in out of their surplus, but she, out of her want, dropped in all of what she had, her whole living.”-Mark 12:41-44. I have exhibited to you in all things that by thus laboring you must assist those who are weak, and must bear in mind the words of the Lord Jesus, when he himself said, “There is more happiness in giving than there is in receiving.” –Acts 20:35. Additional reference: Luke 6:38. (3) What example of giving in support of the congregation was set by first-century Christians? In everything you are being enriched for every sort of generosity, which produces through us an expression of thanks to God; because the ministry of this public service is not only to supply abundantly the wants of the holy ones but also to be rich with many expressions of thanks to God. Through the proof that this ministry gives, they glorify God because you are submissive to the good news about the Christ, as you publicly declare you are, and because you are generous in your contribution to them and to all; and with supplication for you they long for you because of the surpassing undeserved kindness of God upon you-2 Cor. 9:11-14. Additional references: Philippians 4:14-16; Romans 15:26. (4) Why must we be concerned about our brothers and sisters who come to be in need of material assistance? If a brother or a sister is in a naked state and lacking the food sufficient for the day, yet a certain one of you says to them: “Go in peace, keep warm and well fed,” but you do not give them the nece ssities for their body, of what benefit is it?-Jas. 2:15, 16. Additional references: James 1:27; 2 Corinthians 9:1, 2; Proverbs 11:25. (5) In addition to any material contributions to advance the good news, what should we offer that is even more important? Consequently I entreat you by the compassions of God, brothers, to present your bodies a sacrifice living, holy, acceptable to God, a sacred service with your power of reason. -Rom. 12: 1. Through him let us always offer to God a sacrifice of praise, that is, the fruit of lips which make public declaration to his name.-Heb. 13:15. Additional references: Mark 12:30, 31; Matthew 28:19, 20. (6) What should be our attitude toward giving of ourselves and of our material possessions in Jehovah’s service? And yet, who am I and who are my people, that we should retain power to make voluntary offerings like this? For everything is from you, and out of your own hand we have given to you- 1 Chron. 29:14. Additional references: 1 Corinthians 4:7; 2 Corinthians 9:6, 7; Luke 17: 10. Optional questions for discussion: (a) What are some of the needs of the local congregation that are taken care of by the voluntary contributions of the members of the congregation? (b) How do contributions made directly to the nearest branch office of the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society assist in the advancement of the good news? (c) Why should all contributions be made on a voluntary basis and not solicited or assessed? Dedication and Baptism (1) What should always be our attitude toward the doing of Jehovah’s will? To do your will, 0 my God, I have delighted, and your law is within my inward parts.-Ps. 40:8. Happy is the man in fear of Jehovah, in whose commandinents he has taken very much delight.-Ps. 112:1. My food is for me to do the will of him that sent me and to finish his work.-John 4:34. Additional references: Hebrews 10:9; Luke 10:27. (2) Why should this joyful and willing attitude prevail even when we are persecuted or undergoing any form of trial?Consider it all joy, my brothers, when you meet with various trials, knowing as you do that this tested quality of your faith works out endurance.-Jas. 1:2, 3. These, therefore, went their way from before the Sanhedrin, rejoicing because they had been counted worthy to be dishonored in behalf of his name.-Acts 5:41. Additional references: Matthew 5:10-12; 1 Peter 2:20; 4:14. (3) What does it mean for a person to dedicate himself to Jehovah? Look! I am come (in the roll of the book it is written about me) to do your will, 0 God…. Look! I am come to do your will.-Heb. 10:7, 9. Then Jesus said to his disciples: “If anyone wants to come after me, let him disown himself and pick up his torture stake and continually follow me.”-Matt. 16:24. Additional references: Psalm 143:10; Ecclesiastes 12:13; compare 1 Kings 18:21 and Hosea 9:10. (4) When a person has sincerely repented, turned around and made a decision to follow Christ, why should he be baptized? Go therefore and make disciples of people of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the holy spirit.-Matt. 28:19. Then Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan to John, in order to be baptized by him.-Matt. 3:13. In fact, to this course you were called, because even Christ suffered for you, leaving you a model for you to follow his steps closely.-I Pet. 2:21. Additional references: Acts 8:12, 35, 36; 19:5; 22:16; 1 Peter 3:21. (5) Why is it appropriate for dedicated and baptized Christians to be called Jehovah’s Witnesses? “You are my witnesses,” is the utterance of Jehovah, “even my servant whom I have chosen, in order that you may know and have faith in me, and that you may understand that I am the same One. Before me there was no God formed, and after me there continued to be none. I-I am Jehovah, an(i besides me there is no savior. I myself have told forth and have saved and have caused it to be heard, when there was among you no strange god. So you are my witnesses,” is the utterance of Jehovah, “and I am God.”-Isa. 43:10-12. And from Jesus Christ, “the Faithful Witness,” “The firstborn from the dead,” and “The Ruler of the kings of the earth.”-Rev. 1:5. Additional references: John 18:37; Revelation 3:14; 1 Peter 2:9, 21. CONCLUDING QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION: (a) Following your baptism in water, why will it be vital for you to maintain a good schedule for personal study and to share regularly in the ministry? (b) How will staying in close association with the congregation help you to carry out your dedication to Jehovah? (c) How will you go about proving to Jehovah that your dedication has been made in sincerity and from your heart? (d) Are you now thoroughly convinced that you should be baptized at the first opportunity?

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