Friday, November 30, 2007

He was foreknown before the founding of the world, but he was made manifest at the end of the times for the sake of you.—1 Pet. 1:20.

Did Jehovah predetermine from the beginning that Adam and Eve would sin and that the ransom sacrifice provided by means of Jesus Christ would be needed? No. The word “founding” is translated from a Greek term that literally means “throwing down of seed.” Had there been a “throwing down of seed,” or a conceiving of human offspring, before Adam and Eve sinned? No. It was after their act of disobedience that Adam and Eve brought forth children. (Gen. 4:1) So following the rebellion but before the conception of offspring by Adam and Eve, Jehovah foreordained the appearance of the “seed.” (Gen. 3:15) Jesus’ death and resurrection provided the loving arrangement of the ransom, whereby inherited sin and all of Satan’s efforts are to be brought to nothing.—Matt. 20:28; Heb. 2:14; 1 John 3:8. w 6/1/06 10

Thursday, November 29, 2007

None of you should go out of the entrance of his house until morning.—Ex. 12:22.

In the tenth plague upon Egypt in Moses’ day, the firstborn of the Egyptians were killed, but those of the Israelites were spared. Why? Jehovah had given the Israelites instructions for survival, which included the words in today’s text. (Ex. 12:7) Which firstborn among the Israelites would have dared to ignore such God-given instructions by going outside a house marked with the blood splashed on the two doorposts and the upper part of the doorway? We therefore have reason to think carefully about our personal situation. Are we actually inside Jehovah’s arrangement of spiritual protection? When the great tribulation strikes, tears of joy and thankfulness will stream down the faces of those who have sought such protection. For others, there will be only tears of sorrow and regret. w 5/15/06 11, 12

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

To you it is granted to understand the sacred secrets of the kingdom of the heavens.—Matt. 13:11.

During one of his preaching tours of Galilee, Jesus indicated that the sacred secret was closely related to his Messianic Kingdom government. One aspect of that secret involved Jehovah’s selecting a “little flock” of 144,000 humans to be associated with his Son as part of the seed, to reign with him in heaven. (Luke 12:32; Rev. 14:1, 4) Since humans were created to live on earth, “a new creation” by Jehovah was required in order for some humans to go to heaven. (2 Cor. 5:17) Speaking as one of those with the heavenly hope, the apostle Peter wrote: “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, for according to his great mercy he gave us a new birth to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an incorruptible and undefiled and unfading inheritance. It is reserved in the heavens for you.”—1 Pet. 1:3, 4. w 2/15/06 12, 13

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

The one showing favor to the poor one is glorifying [his Maker].—Prov. 14:31.

One aspect of the Mosaic Law that reflected God’s concern for his people’s welfare was the right to glean. The law on gleaning did not stipulate how much produce farmers were to leave for the needy. It was up to them whether the borders of unreaped grain around the edges of their fields would be wide or narrow. In this, the arrangement taught generosity. It gave farmers the opportunity to show their appreciation to the Provider of the harvest. Boaz was one who did so. He kindly made sure that Ruth, a widow who gleaned in his fields, would collect a good quantity of grain. Jehovah amply rewarded Boaz for his generosity. (Ruth 2:15, 16; 4:21, 22; Prov. 19:17) The principle behind the law on gleaning has not changed. Jehovah expects his servants to be generous, especially toward the needy. The more generous we are, the greater our blessings will be.—Luke 6:38. w 6/15/06 11-13

Jehovah is good to all.—Ps. 145:9.

In addition to working “what is good toward all” by preaching, shepherds have the responsibility to work what is good “especially toward those related to [them] in the faith.” (Gal. 6:10) One way they do this is by making encouraging shepherding visits. At times, shepherds may suggest ways in which an individual can improve in his service to Jehovah. In doing so, wise shepherds imitate the apostle Paul. Consider the way he appealed to the brothers in Thessalonica: “We have confidence in the Lord regarding you, that you are doing and will go on doing the things we order.” (2 Thess. 3:4) Such expressions of confidence appeal to the good inclinations of the sheep and make it easier for them to “be obedient to those who are taking the lead.” (Heb. 13:17) When you receive an encouraging shepherding visit, why not express appreciation for it and do your best to apply the suggestions offered? w 5/1/06 15, 16

Saturday, November 24, 2007

He will certainly bring forth the headstone. There will be shoutings to it: “How charming! How charming!”—Zech. 4:7.

Zechariah’s prophecy is pointing to the time when true worship of the Sovereign Lord will be brought to its perfected state in the earthly courtyards of his spiritual temple. That temple is Jehovah’s arrangement for approaching him in worship on the basis of the propitiatory sacrifice of Christ Jesus. Granted, the great spiritual temple has existed since the first century C.E. Yet, true worship in its earthly courtyard will yet be perfected. Millions of worshippers now serve in the earthly courtyard of the spiritual temple. These and multitudes of resurrected ones will be brought to perfection during the Thousand Year Reign of Jesus Christ. At the end of the thousand years, only true worshippers of God will be left on the cleansed earth. Should this not encourage us to move ahead in our ministry, not getting sidetracked by everyday concerns? w 4/15/06 5-7a

Friday, November 23, 2007

We will certainly be satisfied with the goodness of your house, the holy place of your temple.—Ps. 65:4.

David was not permitted to supervise the construction of Jehovah’s house. Instead, that privilege was reserved for his son Solomon. David did not murmur because someone else was granted the privilege that he himself so earnestly desired. What was most important to him was that the temple be built. He wholeheartedly supported the project. Faithful Israelites also supported the arrangements made for true worship at the house of God. As present-day servants of Jehovah, we similarly support provisions for worship within the earthly part of Jehovah’s organization. We thereby demonstrate that we have the same frame of mind that David had. Ours is not a spirit of complaint. Instead, we focus on the goodness of God’s organization. Have you thought about the many good things for which we can truly be grateful? w 7/15/06 2, 3a

Thursday, November 22, 2007

"As for me and my household, we shall serve Jehovah."
Joshua 24:15

In 1473 B.C.E., Joshua led the Israelites into the Promised Land. Joshua entreated the whole nation: “Choose for yourselves today whom you will serve, whether the gods that your forefathers who were on the other side of the River served or the gods of the Amorites in whose land you are dwelling.” Then, referring to his family, he said the words in today’s text. Earlier, Jehovah had urged Joshua to be courageous and strong, instructing him not to deviate from obedience to God’s Law. Rather, by reading the book of the Law in an undertone day and night, Joshua would be able to make his way successful. (Josh. 1:7, 8) And so it proved to be. Joshua’s choice led to blessings. “Not a promise failed out of all the good promise that Jehovah had made to the house of Israel,” Joshua declared. “It all came true.”—Josh. 21:45. w 6/1/06 5, 6a

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Tonight's Theocratic Ministry School was awesome!!! We reviewed over the notes and the talk from the circuit assembly held a couple months ago.
Why Give God Glory? Psalm 19 shows that creation gives God glory. Revelation 4:11 mentions how Jehovah created us and His will is the reason why we exist. We also mention pioneers and how they are a great asset in the congregation. Pioneers have a zeal and motivation that permeates throughout the congregation. Also, Pioneers make other pioneers!!! All we hear from pioneers are their fine examples and joy we see. What an opportunity Jehovah gives us, especially crucial now, before the time of the end when Jehovah's great day will come.

other notes include how our conduct reflects the fruits we produce. It reflects ourselves and has an impact on our brothers and our relationship with Jehovah. (affects our brothers, because we may possibly stumble them).

We can render sacred service to Jehovah through praising him with songs, comments, preaching work.

I thought this was interesting for me. Compare Jehovah and Satan and think about who you want to imitate/follow. One of the qualities Jerry Trotter mentioned was how Jehovah is merciful and slow to anger, whereas Satan holds grudges with great anger. Along with this, we need to have Jehovah's spirit upon us. With his spirit, we can have consistency. I found it interesting, because not many religions acknowledge the spirit, and some religions (the trinity) believe that the holy spirit = Jesus = Jehovah. HAH~!

Moving forward, I took note of Sister Reece and Sister Richardson's talk. IT WAS SO COOL. It shows why our lives our involved in our worship and why we must dedicate ourselves to Jehovah... through BAPTISM! (dun dun dun) Here are my notes:
"Why are our lives involved? Why baptism? Like Noah, we need a spiritual paradise. What does that mean? Looking at the example of Noah, in order to make it to his destination, he must be inside the arc and while in that arc, he had to endure all the nasty things outside, including the corrupt world and its people. In order for US to get into our "spiritual paradise", we must survive and go into our arc, our spiritual arc, in order to make it to the end, our destination, which is everlasting paradise on Earth. mwahaha~ This is why we must owe our lives to Jehovah and make dedication to him with our baptism. :)
ta da~

While taking these notes, I realized Brother Marsh was sitting behind me, and out of nowhere, I recall his example he gave in his talk last Sunday on how children really do acknowledge their parent's examples and conduct. Brother Marsh encountered a little young boy at an assembly and spoke to him.
Boy: I'm going to be like David today!!!
Brother Marsh: Who's David?!! And why do you want to be like him today?
Boy: I'm going to be like David, and you see that man over there in that corner? (*points to an elderly man in a corner*) Well, that's my grandpa, and he's Goliath!
Brother Marsh: (*realizing that the Boy is talking about the example in the Bible of David and Goliath*) Ahhhhh, so why do you want to be David?
Boy: Because I want to teach that man (his grandpa) a lesson. He's a really bad man. He doesn't love Jehovah.

I thought this was such a cute example. Haha! xD
There was another example about a young girl and her mom. She says that her mom will ask her how her day was. And everyday, the girl will respond with the same answer, "it was fine." One day, that young girl went up to a brother and said that her mother doesn't love her. Now, even though the mother is concerned how her young daughter is doing everyday, why does the girl still say her mother does not love her? It is because she knows that as a person learning the truth, how can EVERY single day be FINE, when the world is corrupt, even at schools, and there is so much pressure?

So these points I found were neat and jotted some of them down in my notes. I hope it serves a lesson for you, too!!! Also, Debbie Trotter got me a Bible with my name and baptism date engraved on it. I LOVE IT. !!!! So lately, it motivates me more to read Jehovah's Word. =)
"God is greater than our hearts and knows all things."
1 John 3:20

Admittedly, it can be difficult to quell feelings of discouragement if these are deeply ingrained. Yet, Jehovah’s spirit can help you progressively to overturn “strongly entrenched things . . . raised up against the knowledge of God.” (2 Cor. 10:4, 5) What is meant by the phrase “God is greater than our hearts”? At times, our heart may condemn us, especially when we become painfully aware of our imperfections and shortcomings. Or it may be that because of our background, we have an inordinate tendency to think negatively of ourselves, as if nothing we do could be acceptable to Jehovah. The apostle John’s words assure us that Jehovah is greater than that! He sees past our mistakes and perceives our real potential. He also knows our motives and intentions. (Ps. 103:14) Yes, Jehovah knows us better than we know ourselves! w 8/1/05 18, 19a

Monday, November 19, 2007

"Your works are wonderful, as my soul is very well aware."
Psalm 139:14

The religions of Christendom generally claim to believe the Bible. However, they fail to agree on what it teaches. How different their condition is from that of Jehovah’s servants! Regardless of our national, cultural, or ethnic background, we worship the God we know by name. He is not some mysterious triune god. (Deut. 6:4; Ps. 83:18; Mark 12:29) We are also aware that the paramount issue of God’s universal sovereignty is due for settlement and that by maintaining our integrity to him, each one of us is personally involved in that issue. We know the truth about the dead and are free of the morbid fear of a God who is said to torment humans in hellfire or consign them to purgatory. (Eccl. 9:5, 10) Moreover, what a joy it is to know that we are not an accidental product of blind evolution! Rather, we are God’s creation, made in his own image.—Gen. 1:26; Mal. 2:10. w 5/15/06 4, 5a

Sunday, November 18, 2007

"All of you gird yourselves with lowliness of mind toward one another, because God opposes the haughty ones, but he gives undeserved kindness to the humble ones."
1 Peter 5:5.

Having a regular share in the Christian ministry can help us to be humble. Lowliness of mind can make us effective when we approach strangers we find from house to house and in other places. This is especially true when householders initially respond to the Kingdom message with apathy or rudeness. Our beliefs are often challenged, and humility can help the Christian to keep answering questions “with a mild temper and deep respect.” (1 Pet. 3:15) Humble servants of God have moved to new territories and have helped people with different cultures and standards of living. Such ministers may humbly have to cope with the difficult task of learning a new language in order to be of better service to those with whom they want to share the good news. How commendable!—Matt. 28:19, 20. w 10/15/05 15, 16a

Today's talk by Brother Marsh was awesome. He mentioned how parents must always keep Jehovah first and how they should set that priority on their children, also. I'll keep in mind the examples of the Father who left his job to pioneer with his children, the letter written by a classmate who apologized for teasing one of Jehovah's Witnesses, and of course, the ice cube example.

The apology letter was written by a non-believer to her classmate,Mary, a Jehovah's Witness. She mentions how her high school life was horrible. She was popular amongst most girls and had many boyfriends. Also, she was a cheerleader and became married to a football player. She had abortions by the age of 18 and became pregnant again. She was not sure who the baby's father was and married the most popular football player, because his father was her mother's close friend. The marriage was not out of love, and the person she married was only willing to marry, because his father would reward him with a car. The car got wrecked and so did their marriage. The child died from eating bleach and her father became an alcoholic, because her mother ran away with her ex-husband's father. She could not think of anyone who to send this letter to except to Mary. She apologized for criticizing Mary, saying that she was a lesbian, because she did not accept any boyfriends. She hated Mary, because Mary had something she didn't have: peace of mind and self-respect. This letter really made many of the brothers and sisters fall into tears and I believe Brother Marsh almost did, too.

Anyhow, I thought this talk was just absolutely amazing. A main point to remember was you should always look for your children's interest. If a child says he/she does not want to go to school, you can mention how you had to struggle through when you were at their age. But ALSO, ask what their reason is for not wanting to go. Why? Maybe there's a bully in school or there's a problem with a teacher, perhaps? This talk was just absolutely amazing. If only I could have recorded it!!

Also, last week, the brother said... meetings are essential, because if you miss just ONE meeting, Satan will know and he will try to use that against you.

Today was just amazing. This weekend, about 10 brothers and sisters from San Jose/Garden Grove, California are coming to encourage the Las Vegas group. I CAN'T WAIT!!! :D

Saturday, November 17, 2007

"Rejoice with people who rejoice; weep with people who weep."
Romans 12:15

Loving Christian shepherds endeavor to show personal interest in each sheep in the congregation. (Phil. 2:4) One way shepherds become better acquainted with individual sheep is by working side by side with them in the public preaching work. Jesus often had his followers with him in the preaching work and used such occasions to give encouragement. (Luke 8:1) Love moved Jesus to share in the joys and sorrows of his followers. For example, when 70 of his disciples returned with joy from their preaching, Jesus became “overjoyed.” (Luke 10:17-21) However, when he saw the effect Lazarus’ death had on Mary and her family members and friends, “Jesus gave way to tears.” (John 11:33-35) Likewise, caring shepherds today are not emotionally distant from the sheep. If you experience either joy or sadness in your life, feel free to share your feelings with Christian shepherds.—Rom. 1:11, 12. w 5/1/06 6, 7

Friday, November 16, 2007

"The sons of Israel could not gaze intently at the face of Moses . . . Their mental powers were dulled."
2 Corinthians 3:7, 14

What a sad situation! The Israelites were Jehovah’s chosen people, and he wanted them to draw close to him. (Ex. 19:4-6) Yet, they were reluctant to gaze intently on the reflection of God’s glory. Instead of turning their hearts and minds toward Jehovah in loving devotion, they in a sense turned away from him. In this, we find a parallel in the first century C.E. By the time of Paul’s conversion to Christianity, the Law covenant had been replaced by the new covenant, mediated by Jesus Christ, the Greater Moses. In both word and deed, Jesus perfectly reflected the glory of Jehovah. (Heb. 1:3) What a magnificent opportunity the Jews had! They could listen to the sayings of everlasting life from the Son of God himself! Sadly, most of those to whom Jesus preached did not listen.—Isa. 6:9, 10; Matt. 13:15. w 8/15/05 4, 5a

Thursday, November 15, 2007

"Look! I am with you all the days until the conclusion of the system of things."
Matthew 28:20

How is Jesus Christ with his followers in this time of the conclusion of the system of things? “The helper, the holy spirit, which the Father will send in my name,” said Jesus, “that one will teach you all things and bring back to your minds all the things I told you.” (John 14:26) The holy spirit, sent in Jesus’ name, guides and strengthens us today. It enlightens us spiritually and helps us to understand “even the deep things of God.” (1 Cor. 2:10) Moreover, the godly qualities of “love, joy, peace, long-suffering, kindness, goodness, faith, mildness, self-control” are “the fruitage of the spirit.” (Gal. 5:22, 23) With the help of the holy spirit, we can cultivate these qualities. And holy spirit also helps us to endure temptations and trials.—1 Cor. 10:13; 2 Cor. 4:7; Phil. 4:13. w 9/15/05 5-7a

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

"We were foreordained according to the purpose of him who operates all things according to the way his will counsels."
Ephesians 1:11

The apostle John had the privilege of learning in a vision the number of those who would become Christ’s joint heirs—144,000. (Rev. 7:4-8; 14:1, 3) United with Christ as King, they serve “for the praise of [God’s] glory.” (Eph. 1:12-14) The foreordination of the 144,000 does not mean that certain individuals were predestined to serve God faithfully in this way. Indeed, the admonition in the Christian Greek Scriptures was written primarily to guide and strengthen anointed ones to maintain integrity and keep themselves worthy of their heavenly calling. (Phil. 2:12; 2 Thess. 1:5, 11; 2 Pet. 1:10, 11) Jehovah knows in advance that 144,000 individuals will qualify to serve his purpose. Who they prove to be depends on how those invited individually choose to live their life, a decision that each one of them must make personally.—Matt. 24:13. w 6/1/06 11, 12

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

"You must choose life in order that you may keep alive, you and your offspring."
Deuteronomy 30:19

The Israelites individually had to choose to love Jehovah, to listen to his voice, and to stick to him. Since the Israelites had free will, they would have to bear the consequences of their choice. (Deut. 30:16-18) The period of the Judges provides a good illustration of the consequences of faithfulness and of unfaithfulness. Just before that period began, the Israelites followed the good example of Joshua and were blessed. However, some time after Joshua’s death, “another generation began to rise after them that did not know Jehovah or the work that he had done for Israel. And the sons of Israel fell to doing what was bad in the eyes of Jehovah.” (Judg. 2:7, 10, 11) Apparently, the upcoming, inexperienced generation did not prize their heritage as members of a dedicated people.—Ps. 78:3-7, 10, 11. w 7/1/06 6, 7

Monday, November 12, 2007

"In case my own father and my own mother did leave me, even Jehovah himself would take me up."
Psalm 27:10

There is one particular aspect of the last days that we cannot overlook. The Bible foretold that many would have “no natural affection.” (2 Tim. 3:3) Family affection is sorely lacking in many households. Those who have been exposed to an unwholesome home environment may in later years experience bouts of anxiety and despair. What if this is true of you? The psalmist David sang the words of today’s text. How comforting to know that Jehovah’s love exceeds that of any human parent! As painful as rejection, mistreatment, or abandonment by a parent may be, it has no bearing on how much Jehovah cares for you. (Rom. 8:38, 39) Remember that God draws those whom he loves. (John 3:16; 6:44) Regardless of how you have been treated by humans, you are loved by your heavenly Father! w 7/15/06 14, 15b

Sunday, November 11, 2007

"What is Jehovah asking back from you but to exercise justice and to love kindness and to be modest in walking with your God?"
Micah 6:8

Pursuing such a course makes us different from most of the people around us. Yet, it is the only proper choice for a Christian. Why? First, Jehovah is our Creator. (Rev. 4:11) As a result, only he has the right to tell us how to walk. In addition, for those who walk with him, Jehovah has made provision for the forgiveness of sin, and he offers the sure hope of everlasting life. Our all-loving heavenly Father also provides wise counsel that helps those who walk with him to make a success of life now, despite their being imperfect and living in a world that is lying in Satan’s power. (John 3:16; 2 Tim. 3:15, 16; 1 John 1:8; 2:25; 5:19) Most important, when we walk with God, we show where we stand on the great issue of sovereignty.—Gen. 3:1-6. w 9/1/05 4-7

Saturday, November 10, 2007

"[God] kept Noah, a preacher of righteousness, safe with seven others when he brought a deluge upon a world of ungodly people."
2 Peter 2:5

Noah’s contemporaries failed to appreciate that Noah had divine backing and was acting at God’s direction. So they did not take his preaching seriously and act on his warning message. What about today? Although many are impressed by the work and conduct of Jehovah’s Witnesses, most do not take the good news and the Bible’s warnings seriously. In these last days of the present system of things, Jehovah’s people are making known God’s righteous standards and are declaring good news about the possibility of surviving into the new world. (2 Pet. 3:9-13) Just as Noah and his God-fearing family were preserved in the ark, survival of individuals today depends on their faith and their loyal association with the earthly part of Jehovah’s universal organization. w 5/15/06 6, 8

Friday, November 9, 2007

"Have love for the whole association of brothers."
1 Peter 2:17

God’s organization plays a vital role in our spiritual growth. It provides a wealth of Bible publications that help us to grow in accurate knowledge and to cultivate a close relationship with God. Like a mother who makes sure that her child is well-fed and cared for, “the faithful and discreet slave” provides an abundance of timely spiritual food for our spiritual advancement. (Matt. 24:45-47; 1 Thess. 2:7, 8) At weekly meetings, Jehovah’s people receive the needed training and encouragement to be faithful Witnesses of Jehovah. (Heb. 10:24, 25) Both at our meetings and through our personal study of Bible publications, we can see Jehovah’s spirit at work, directing his organization. By means of these regular provisions, God alerts us to dangers, trains us to be effective ministers, and helps us to keep spiritually awake.—Ps. 19:7, 8, 11; 1 Thess. 5:6, 11; 1 Tim. 4:13. w 4/1/06 14, 15

I remembered the time I had to ask Debbie was was the "faithful and discreet slave". They are the anointed 144,000 and the governing body is a small group of men that are also part of the faithful and discreet slave, but they serve as spokesman for the faithful and discreet slave. When questions and problems arise, the faithful and discreet slave will turn to the governing body. Pretty cool, huh? And these are brothers and sisters from all over the world. SO COOL!!! I'm still waiting to go to New York and check out Bethel, grrrrr. I want to go so bad. haha xD

Thursday, November 8, 2007

"Prove yourself faithful even to death, and I will give you the crown of life."
Revelation 2:10

Very strengthening to anointed Christians are these words of Jesus Christ. Anointed ones and their companions with an earthly hope are not afraid of the Devil. This lack of fear does not stem from inherent courage. It exists because they have reverential fear of God and ‘take refuge in the shadow of his wings.’ (Psalm 34:9; 36:7) Fearless early disciples of Jesus Christ proved faithful to death despite the things they suffered. They did not succumb to fear of what Satan the Devil could do, for they knew that Jehovah would never abandon those who proved loyal to Him. Similarly, in the face of intense present-day persecution, anointed Christians and their dedicated associates are determined not to break their integrity to God. Although Satan still possesses “the means to cause death,” true Christians can take comfort in Jesus’ words in today’s text and maintain their integrity to God.—Hebrews 2:14. w 1/15/06 3, 4a

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

"From this day I shall bestow blessing."
Haggai 2:19

In order to have Jehovah’s backing and blessing, we must keep the work at the spiritual temple in first place in our lives. Unlike the Jews who said, “The time has not come,” we must remember that we are living in “the last days.” (Hag. 1:2; 2 Tim. 3:1) Jesus foretold that his loyal followers would preach the good news of the Kingdom and make disciples. We must be careful not to neglect our privilege of service. The preaching and teaching work that was temporarily halted by the world’s opposition was resumed in 1919, but it has not been completed. You can be sure, though, that it certainly will be! To the extent that we continue to work in earnest, we will be blessed—as a people and as individuals. Once the Jews returned in whole-souled worship and resumed in earnest their work on the foundation of the temple, they enjoyed full restoration of Jehovah’s favor. w 4/15/06 8, 9a

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

"In grassy pastures he makes me lie down."
Psalm 23:2

A flock lying down peacefully in the midst of abundance—David here paints a scene of contentment, refreshment, and security. The Hebrew word rendered “pastures” can mean “pleasant place.” Likely, on their own, the sheep would not find a refreshing spot to lie down in peace. Their shepherd must lead them to such a “pleasant place.” How does Jehovah lead us today? One way he does so is by example. His Word urges us to “become imitators of God.” (Eph. 5:1) The context of those words mentions compassion, forgiveness, and love. (Eph. 4:32; 5:2) Certainly, Jehovah sets the finest example in displaying such warm qualities. If we follow his example, he will lead us, as it were, to a pleasant ‘resting-place.’ In the midst of this violent world, we will “dwell in security,” experiencing the peace that comes from knowing that we have God’s approval.—Ps. 4:8; 29:11. w 11/1/05 9, 10

Friday, November 2, 2007

"Do not become righteous overmuch, nor show yourself excessively wise."
Ecclesiastes 7:16

A few become “righteous overmuch” and resent changes or refinements in our understanding of the Scriptures. Pride may play a role, and some fall into the trap of independent thinking. Whatever the reason, such an attitude is hazardous, since it can draw us back into the world and its ways. What if we are tempted to murmur because of having doubts about certain teachings that Jehovah’s people hold in common? Then let us not be impatient. The ‘faithful slave’ may eventually publish something that answers our questions and clears up our doubts. (Matt. 24:45) Prayer, personal study, and association with spiritually-minded fellow believers can also help to remove doubts and can deepen our appreciation for the faith-strengthening Bible truths we have learned through Jehovah’s channel of communication. w 7/15/06 14, 16a

going to california today!!!! So I'll post the rest of the daily text for this weekend today, since I'm gone for the whole weekend!

"To do your will, O my God, I have delighted."
Psalms 40:8

Jehovah expects those who serve him to show willing submission to his will. Prophetically, the psalmist sang: “Your people will offer themselves willingly on the day of your military force. In the splendors of holiness, from the womb of the dawn, you have your company of young men just like dewdrops.” (Ps. 110:3) Jehovah’s entire organization, both the heavenly and the earthly parts, functions on the basis of loving submission to God’s will. So you young ones should understand that neither your parents nor the Christian elders in the congregation are going to force you to get baptized. The desire to serve Jehovah must come from you. Joshua of old told the Israelites: “Serve [Jehovah] in faultlessness and in truth . . . Choose for yourselves today whom you will serve.” (Josh. 24:14-22) Similarly, it must be of your own accord that you choose to dedicate yourselves to Jehovah. w 7/1/06 9-11a

"He delivered us from the authority of the darkness and transferred us into the kingdom of the Son of his love."
Colossians 1:13

At Pentecost 33 C.E., God “made [Christ] head over all things to the congregation.” (Eph. 1:20-22; Acts 2:32-36) Christ thus began to rule but in a limited sense. His initial subjects were spirit-anointed Christians, who made up spiritual Israel, “the Israel of God.” (Gal. 6:16) Almost 30 years later, the apostle Paul confirmed that Christ had not yet taken full Kingdom power, but he was “at the right hand of God, from then on awaiting until his enemies should be placed as a stool for his feet.” (Heb. 10:12, 13) Then, near the end of the first century C.E., the aged apostle John foresaw in a vision the Universal Sovereign, Jehovah, installing Christ Jesus as King of the newborn heavenly Kingdom. (Rev. 11:15; 12:1-5) Today, we have overwhelming evidence confirming that Christ began to rule as Messianic King in heaven in 1914. w 5/1/06 1, 2b

"Happy are those conscious of their spiritual need."
Matthew 5:3

Mankind was created with a number of needs. Food, drink, and shelter, for example, are essential if a person is to remain in good physical health. Yet, man also has to care for his “spiritual need.” He will not be truly happy unless he does that. Jehovah considered the satisfying of this innate need to be so fundamental that he commanded his people to interrupt their normal activities for one whole day each week in order to give attention to spiritual matters. That was the Sabbath arrangement. The first occurrence of the word “sabbath” in the Bible is in connection with the provision of manna in the wilderness. The Israelites were told that they should collect this miraculous bread for six days. On the sixth day, they were to collect “the bread of two days,” for on the seventh, none would be provided. The seventh day would be “a holy sabbath to Jehovah.”—Ex. 16:13-30. w 6/15/06 6, 7

Thursday, November 1, 2007

"Happy is the man that is feeling dread constantly, but he that is hardening his heart will fall into calamity."
Proverbs 28:14

As each of the Ten Plagues befell Egypt, Pharaoh hardened his heart rather than displayed godly fear. Jehovah did not force Pharaoh into a course of disobedience but allowed that proud ruler to choose. Paul explained regarding Jehovah’s view of Pharaoh: “For this very cause I have let you remain, that in connection with you I may show my power, and that my name may be declared in all the earth.” (Romans 9:17) Centuries later, the prophet Isaiah declared: “O Jehovah, you are our Father. We are the clay, and you are our Potter; and all of us are the work of your hand.” (Isaiah 64:8) As we allow Jehovah to mold us through our personal study and application of his Word, we become more meek and malleable, making it easier for us to stick loyally to Jehovah.—Ephesians 4:23, 24; Colossians 3:8-10. w 6/1/06 13, 14a