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SEPTEMBER 15, 2011
SIMPLIFIED ENGLISH EDITION STUDY ARTICLES:
October 24-30 ˙ PAGE 3 Jehovah Is My Share
SONGS TO BE USED: 38, 56
October 31–November 6 ˙ PAGE 9 Are You Letting Jehovah Be Your Share?
SONGS TO BE USED: 40, 85
November 7-13 ˙ PAGE 15
Run the Race With Endurance
SONGS TO BE USED: 54, 135
November 14-20 ˙ PAGE 21
Run That You May Attain the Prize
SONGS TO BE USED: 81, 129
November 21-27 ˙ PAGE 27
Are You Known by Jehovah?
SONGS TO BE USED: 107, 4
SEPTEMBER 15, 2011
The purpose of this magazine, The Watchtower, is to honor Jehovah God, the Supreme Ruler of the universe. Just as watchtowers in ancient times enabled a person to observe developments from afar, so this magazine shows us the signiﬁcance of world events in the light of Bible prophecies. It comforts people with the good news that God’s Kingdom, which is a real government in heaven, will soon bring an end to all wickedness and transform the earth into a paradise. It promotes faith in Jesus Christ, who died so that we might gain everlasting life and who is now ruling as King of God’s Kingdom. This magazine has been published by Jehovah’s Witnesses continuously since 1879 and is nonpolitical. It adheres to the Bible as its authority.
This publication is not for sale. It is provided as part of a worldwide Bible educational work supported by voluntary donations. Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture quotations are from the modern-language New World Translation of the Holy Scriptures —With References. “Some Words Explained” are contextual explanations of words used within an article.
PURPOSE OF STUDY ARTICLES STUDY ARTICLES 1, 2 PAGES 3-14 When Jehovah told the Levites: “I am your share,” what did he mean? (Numbers 18:20) Were the Levites the only ones who had Jehovah as their share? Can we today have Jehovah as our share? If we can, how? These two study articles will answer these questions. STUDY ARTICLES 3, 4 PAGES 15-26 These articles talk about the race that Christians run. The prize is everlasting life. What examples can encourage us to continue running in this race? What could stop us from running? And what will help us to ﬁnish the race and win the prize? STUDY ARTICLE 5 PAGES 27-32 Jehovah’s faithful servants are known and approved by him. What qualities can help us to continue to be his friends? This article will help each of us to think about his own friendship with God.
The Watchtower (ISSN 0043-1087) is published semimonthly by Watchtower Bible and Tract Society of New York, Inc.; M. H. Larson, President; G. F. Simonis, Secretary-Treasurer; 25 Columbia Heights, Brooklyn, NY 11201-2483, and by Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society of Canada, PO Box 4100, Georgetown, ON L7G 4Y4. Periodicals Postage Paid at Brooklyn, NY, and at additional mailing oﬃces. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Watchtower, 1000 Red Mills Road, Wallkill, NY 12589-3299. 5 2011 Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society of Pennsylvania. All rights reserved. Printed in Canada. Vol. 132, No. 18 Semimonthly ENGLISH
Jehovah Is My Share
FTER the Israelites had conquered much of the Promised Land, Joshua, High Priest Eleazar, and the leaders of the tribes divided the land into portions, or parts. These portions were the tribes’ share of the land. (Numbers 34: 13-29) Jehovah gave all the tribes a share of the land, but the Levites did not get a share. (Joshua 14:1-5) Why did the Levites not receive a territory, or share, of the Promised Land? Were they forgotten? 2 The answer is in what Jehovah told the Levites. Jehovah promised not to abandon them. He said: “I am your share and your inheritance in the midst of the sons of Israel.” (Numbers 18:20) When Jehovah said: “I am your share,” he made a wonderful promise to the Levites. How would you feel if Jehovah said that to you? At ﬁrst, you might ask, “Would Jehovah promise that to someone like me?” You might also ask, “Can Jehovah really be the share of any imperfect Christian today?” These are important questions because they involve you and the people you love. So we will look at what it means for someone to have Jehovah as his share. That will help us understand how Jehovah can be the share of Christians today. More specifically, we will understand how he can be
your share, whether you hope to live in heaven or in a paradise on earth.
JEHOVAH TOOK CARE OF THE LEVITES
THEME SCRIPTURE “I am your share and your inheritance in the midst of the sons of Israel.”
Before Jehovah gave —NUMBERS 18:20. the Law to Israel, family heads served as priests for their own families. But when Jehovah gave the Law to Israel, he chose some from the tribe of Levi to serve as priests and assistants. How did this happen? Jehovah said that when he destroyed the ﬁrstborn sons of the Egyptians, he “sanctiﬁed” for himself every ﬁrstborn son of the Israelites. This means that they belonged to him for his service. But then Jehovah decided that “in place of all the ﬁrstborn among the sons of Israel,” he wanted to use the Levites for his service. Because the other tribes of Israel had more ﬁrstborn sons than there were Levites, Jehovah told the other Israelites to pay a price in exchange for those who were “in excess of the Levites.” (Numbers 3:11-13, 41, 46, 47) So the Levites could now start their service to the God of Israel. 4 When Jehovah chose the Levites for his service, how did he become their share? Instead of giving them
3. How did it happen that God chose the Levites for his service? 4, 5. (a) What did it mean for the Levites to have God as their share? (b) How did God take care of the Levites?
1, 2. (a) What was the situation of the Levites when Jehovah gave a share of the land to all the other tribes of Israel? (b) What was Jehovah’s promise to the Levites?
24.) The Levites got “every tenth part in Israel as an inheritance in return for their service. page 684. Jehovah gave them something precious. 21. . a very imporˇ Material things: tant work to do. 5 Some believe that the Israelites gave a second tithe.1 (See footnote.” This means that they received a tithe. (Read Numbers 18:19.) (Numbers 18:25-29) The priests also received “all the holy contributions” that the sons of Israel brought to God at his place of worship. of what the land SOME WORDS EXPLAINED How was Jehovah the share of the priests and Levites? produced and of the increase of the domestic animals. “The Things such as money. or ˇ Sanctuary: share. (Joshua 18:7) NumA place of worship bers chapter 18 helps us to understand that they ˇ Assignment of work: would still have the maA speciﬁc work someterial things that they one gives you to do needed. and enjoyment during the holy conventions each year. “of the very best of it. see Insight on the Scriptures. and clothes was their inheritance. Volume 2. or one tenth. Israelite families used it for food.” for the needs of the priests. Then the Levites contributed a tenth part of what they received. So the priests could trust Jehovah to take care of their needs. (Deu1 To learn more about how Jehovah took care of the needs of the priests. 2011 a land inheritance.4 THE WATCHTOWER ˙ SEPTEMBER 15. drink. priesthood of Jehovah” food.
10. He even said: “Surely it is in vain that I have cleansed my heart and that I wash my hands in innocence itself. the priests and Levites suﬀered. 6 If the Levites had no share of the land. But some individual Levites also used the words “Jehovah is my share” when they spoke about their own friendship with God and their trust in him. The Israelites celebrated a Sabbath year every seven years. What troubled the Levite Asaph? 9. That hap6. These cities included the six cities of refuge. Why could Asaph say that God was his “share to time indeﬁnite”? Jehovah cared for the needs of the Levites of those who gave themselves to his service. INDIVIDUAL LEVITES WHO HAD JEHOVAH AS THEIR SHARE 8 The Levites as a tribe had Jehovah as their share. Even though the tribe of Levi did not have a share of the land. And the priests and Levites needed faith in Jehovah and in the ways that Jehovah used to take care of their needs. So how could the Levites show that Jehovah was their share? By trusting that Jehovah had the power to give them what they needed and that he wanted to take care of them. though he could have been a member of the family of Asaph.”—Psalm 73:2. At the end of every third and sixth year of this period of seven years. 17. 29. Why were the Levites included in this law? Because they had “no share or inheritance” in Israel. the Levites had to work in the ﬁelds and could not do their work as ministers. —Deuteronomy 14:28. the main singer from the Levites in the time of King David. As a result.) The Levites could have what they needed to sustain them only when the nation obeyed Jehovah’s Law. 9 At the sanctuary. What did the Levites need to have for Jehovah to be their share? . the Bible talks about a Levite singer and composer who spoke of Jehovah as his share. 2011 5 teronomy 14:22-27) But there was another use for this tithe. the Israelites used this tithe to help the poor and also the Levites.THE WATCHTOWER ˙ SEPTEMBER 15. Asaph began to change his way of thinking. (Lamentations 3:24) For example. 13. Jehovah took very good care of the needs pened in the time of Nehemiah. But when the people did not obey Jehovah’s law about the tithe. (Numbers 35:6-8) So the Levites had a place to live when they were not serving at the sanctuary of God. (Read Nehemiah 13:10. 7 There was no punishment in the Law for an Israelite who did not give the tithe.” It seems that Asaph forgot for a while that the work Jehovah had given him to do was very special. We will call him Asaph. where did they live? God took care of them. He forgot that Jehovah was his share. 12. where did they live? 7. He was troubled until he “proceeded to come into the grand sanctuary of God. Maybe 8. He gave the Levites 48 cities along with the ﬁelds around these cities. 3. (1 Chronicles 6:31-43) We read in Psalm 73 that this Asaph became jealous of the wicked and could not understand why they seemed to have a good life.
he was not talking about just the material things he received as a Levite. He sang: “As for me.”—Psalm 73:28. 25) Then he said that Jehovah was What helped Asaph to continue to have Jehovah as his share? his share.” (Psalm 73: 23.” But he continued.) Asaph wrote: “My organism and my heart have failed. But by studying the Bible and by going to Christian meetings. saying that God was his “share to time indeﬁnite. you again started to think the way Jehovah thinks. 2011 something like that has happened to you. 10 So when Asaph said that God was his share. (Ecclesiastes 7:1) This must have been very comforting to Asaph. Asaph understood what would ﬁnally happen to the wicked. (Read Psalm 73:26. He said that Jehovah would hold his right hand and lead him.6 THE WATCHTOWER ˙ SEPTEMBER 15.” He knew that Jehovah would remember him as a friend forever and would not forget his faithful service. the drawing near to God is good for me. He was mainly talking about . He thought about the good things that he had as one of God’s servants. In the Sovereign Lord Jehovah I have placed my refuge. Maybe you too forgot for a while how special your service to Jehovah is and began to think about the material things you could have. And he could say to Jehovah: “Besides you I do have no other delight on the earth.
13 For 70 years. 13. (Jeremiah 1:1) There was a time when Jeremiah too asked Jehovah why the wicked had a good life but those who did what was right suﬀered. who else had Jehovah as his share? Why? 14 . he felt as if he were walking in darkness. OTHERS COULD HAVE JEHOVAH AS THEIR SHARE Both Asaph and Jeremiah were of the tribe of Levi. Other than the Levites. 3:6) Jeremiah had told the Israelites to return 11. He had to be sure that Jehovah would reward him with a happy future if he obeyed Jehovah. they returned to their homeland and had the opportunity of serving Jehovah there. Those who obeyed Jehovah survived. What question did Jeremiah ask Jehovah? How did Jehovah answer his question? 12. Jehovah was their only hope. but they had become so bad that Jehovah had to destroy Jerusalem and Judah. but it was not only the 14. You can be sure that Jehovah will do the same for you. It was his work as Jehovah’s prophet. Let us talk about what he meant when he said that. 16.” It was then that Jeremiah said the words: “Jehovah is my share. Even in that time Asaph and Jeremiah trusted that Jehovah would act of sadness. Jehovah answered Jeremiah’s question by telling him to preach a message of destruction. And his trust in God gave him reason to show “a waiting attitude.” He said about Jehovah’s mercies: “They are new each morning. After 70 years. to wait patiently for Jehovah to act. (a) What made Jeremiah say: “Jehovah is my share”? What attitude did he show? (b) Why did all the tribes of Israel need to have the same “waiting attitude” as Jeremiah? to their heavenly Father.—2 Chronicles 36:20-23. (Jeremiah 12:1) When he saw what was happening in Jerusalem and Judah. 12 Later.” He still had something very special. All the tribes of Israel had lost their inheritance.” (Lamentations 1:1.—Jeremiah 21:9. when Jeremiah looked at his homeland and saw how empty and ruined it was. so they needed to show the same attitude as Jeremiah. That made Jeremiah feel hurt. Asaph had to keep his faith in Jehovah and trust in him. 11 Another Levite who said that Jehovah was his share was the prophet Jeremiah. he made a complaint to Jehovah. even though he had done what was right. a Levite city near Jerusalem. (Jeremiah 25:11) But Jeremiah’s words “Jehovah is my share” showed that he trusted in Jehovah. but the wicked did not pay attention to the warning and died. Jeremiah said: “We have not come to our ﬁnish.—Read Lamentations 3:22-24. Jeremiah knew that Jehovah is righteous. the homeland of the Israelites would be empty and ruined. 2011 7 his service to Jehovah and the friendship that he had with the Most High.” that is. 15. and then Jehovah made this prophecy come true. It was as if Jehovah had made him “sit like men dead for a long time.THE WATCHTOWER ˙ SEPTEMBER 15. He lived in Anathoth. (James 2:21-23) To continue to be Jehovah’s friend.
He was share? hiding from his enemies in a cave. (1 Samuel 25:1) That could have made David feel alone. the fuˇ In what way was ture king of Israel. One time it was your share? near Adullam and the other time it was in the wilderness of En-gedi. He was going to become the king of God’s people.” (Read ˇ What did Asaph. he might have heard about what had happened to High Priest Ahimelech. 4) In that isolated place. (Psalm 142:4) That was when David asked God for help. He was the one who had anointed David to be the future king. so David escaped to a cave that was hard to get to. (1 Samuel 22:1. called Jehovah the share God his “share in the land of the Levites? of the living ones. 18. what did it mean to have Jehovah as their share? It meant that they all received an assignment of work in his service. 5. 18. 15 If David wrote this psalm in a cave. Saul wanted to kill David. it is because he was hiding from King Saul. 19) David felt responsible for their deaths. How can we be like them and have Jehovah as our share? We will talk about that in our next article. David had to hide need to have God as in caves. would you have felt responsible? To make things even more diﬃcult. 16 Before David wrote Psalm 142. and David David wrote this psalm. David probably felt that he had no friend to protect him. 17. The Levites and those of other tribes. How did the ones we talked about in this article show that they had Jehovah as their share? . (1 Samuel 22:11. do that shows that he was not in a palace or Jehovah was their even in a house. Jealous King Saul ordered the death of Ahimelech and his family. as if he had no one to help him. 17 Soon after what happened to Ahimelech. Psalm 142:1. but he had been anointed to do another kind of special service. could have God as their share. David had no rest because Saul continued to chase him. (a) Why could David have felt that he had no one to help him? (b) Whom could David ask for help? tion. 18 For the servants of Jehovah whom we have talked about in this article. Young David. Ahimelech had helped David. Without knowing that David was escaping from Saul. the prophet Samuel died. 2011 Levites who could be privileged to serve Jehovah.8 THE WATCHTOWER ˙ SEPTEMBER 15. You too can have Jehovah as your share. But he knew David trusted in God that Jehovah would help him. (1 Samuel 16:1. They also trusted that Jehovah would take care of them. It was as if he had killed the priest who had helped him. At least two ˇ What quality do you times. He did not have the same special work that the Levites had. It is possible that he wrote Psalm 142 in one of those caves. such as David.) When Jeremiah. If you had been in David’s situaWHAT IS YOUR ANSWER? 16. 13) So David talked to Jehovah about all his thoughts and feelings and continued to trust in Jehovah. You can trust in him while you continue to do your best in his service.
whether he hopes to live in heaven or on earth. they put God’s service ﬁrst in their lives and do all they can. when the Son of man sits down upon his glorious throne. Revelation 4:10. judging the twelve tribes of Israel. or “the Israel of God. who are anointed with holy spirit to become kings and priests in heaven. disown himself and pick 4 While on earth.” In this verse. They have diﬀerent abilities and diﬀerent situations in life. you who have followed me will also yourselves sit upon twelve thrones. 11 shows that they will continue their ser1. the ancient nation of Israel? The Bible also talks about spiritual Israel. (Galatians 6:16. is their share. 5 Jesus said that every Christian. They 5. Just the opposite. We read about it at Matthew 19:28. “the twelve tribes of Israel” are those who will live forever in Paradise on earth.9 Are You Letting Jehovah Be Your Share? HEN you read the name Israel in the Bible. where they will be kings and priests with “If anyone wants to Jesus Christ. (Numbers 18:20) The anointed do not expect to get some territory or place on earth. (a) Who are “the Israel of God” whom we read about at Galatians 6:16? (b) Who are “the twelve tribes of Israel” whom we read about at Matthew 19:28? 3.” They are the 144. Their service to God is the most important thing to them. 4. Clearly. How can all Christians have Jehovah as their share? Why may that be diﬃcult? . who was later named Israel? Or do you think of his descendants. the up his torture stake and anointed live in a way continually follow me. (Matthew 16:24) Millions of people who hope to live in Paradise on earth are worshipping God and following Christ in that way. What ﬁne example have faithful anointed ones set? W THEME vice to Jehovah in heavSCRIPTURE en. 2 Jesus said: “In the re-creation. must “disown himself and pick up his torture stake” and follow him continually. Instead. but they do not use their limitations as an excuse to do little in God’s service. they are an example for those who hope to live on earth. The apostle Peter said: “Do your utmost to make the calling and choosing of you sure for yourselves. 21:12) But there is another special use of the name Israel. 3 Like the priests and Levites in the past.000 will serve as judges and priests for them.” that shows that Jehovah —MATTHEW 16:24. Revelation 7:4. let him 44:28. 2. what do you think of? Do you think of Isaac’s son Jacob.” (2 Peter 1: 10) Those anointed do this by putting faith in Christ’s ransom sacriﬁce and following him continually.000.—Ezekiel come after me. the anointed today think of their service to Jehovah as very precious. The 144.
Their share is in this life only. 7 Jean-Claude. They show that Jehovah is their share. Jean-Claude told him that he not only had to care for the material needs of his family but also had to help them have a good relationship with God.) These people do not care about Jehovah. 2011 are not content to do just a little in God’s service if they know that they ˇ Secular work: can do more. work hard in the ministry. many Christians have shown that their service to Jehovah is more important to them than their secular work. so it may be diﬃcult to do all we can. and your problems. One day. you must forget all other things. Many care only about having a comfortable life.) Just like Asaph. He also said that he had Jesus taught his followers to seek ﬁrst the Kingdom and God’s righteousness. David was diﬀerent. You must devote your life to nothing but your work. The manager told him: “If you are fortunate enough to have a job.” (Read Psalm 17:1. She did what she could. including your wife. Work would start at 6:30 in the evening. and most people will do almost anything to keep their job. . in the Central African Republic. . not able to pioneer. In our time. David knew that being a friend of Jehovah was the most important thing in life. His son Solomon later said that we should all do 6 Jehovah becomes our share when we put his service ﬁrst in our life to help the congregation. footnote. the production manager told JeanClaude to begin working nights. It is hard to ﬁnd a job in that land. SOME WORDS EXPLAINED SEEK FIRST GOD’S KINGDOM the same. He wanted to have “a good name” with Jehovah. Jesus said: “She did a ﬁne deed toward me. who poured perfumed oil on Jesus. What blessing did one brother receive for putting the Kingdom ﬁrst? 6. People in the world usually seek what is best for themselves. Still others.” What would you 7.” (Mark 14: 6-8) We live in a world controlled by Satan. 13-15. .10 THE WATCHTOWER ˙ SEPTEMBER 15. and leaving an inheritance for their children. (a) How do people in the world show that their share is in this life only? (b) Why is it better to imitate David? . The Bible speaks of them as “men of this system of things. We will now look at four ways in which we can do that. Make your choice: your religion or your work. raising a family. It made David happy. your children. (Ecclesiastes 7:1. They are like Mary. whose share is in this life. Others make can see and touch the effort to pioneer is literal some months each year. We need to work hard and put our trust in Jehovah. seven days a week. Many have A job or employment made their life simpler ˇ Literal: and have become regular Something that you pioneers. is a married elder with three children.
As we get closer to the end. God would take care of him.—Isaiah 2:4. but our brother still had his. The manager had been dismissed from his job. He 10. 9.—Matthew 6:33. 9. he had two children and enough money to last just a few months.) Some people grew tobacco or sold tobacco products. (Numbers 18:20) Even though we are not serving at a literal temple as the priests and Levites were. He would still have a lot to do in God’s service. 2 Corinthians 7:1. —Revelation 13:17. (1 Timothy 5:8) But whether that happened to you or not. 8 Some of you may have been in a similar situation. they decided to serve him. who did not receive a land inheritance. Why? Because the organization he worked for was involved in war. So he went to the next meeting. we can have the same trust in Jehovah. he got a phone call. . Just then.” he promised them that God would give them all other things. 11 Andrew is an example of someone who did that. or 10 Our service to God is more important than our secular work made and sold weapons of war before they became Christians. In what way can we be like the priests and Levites and have Jehovah as our share? SEEK FIRST GOD’S RIGHTEOUSNESS Jesus also told his disciples to seek first God’s righteousness.THE WATCHTOWER ˙ SEPTEMBER 15. most chose to change their work and qualify for baptism. or wear. After that. like the Levites. When he and his wife learned about Jehovah. When Jesus told his disciples to keep on “seeking ﬁrst the kingdom. and Jehovah would care for the material needs of his family. You may have worried about how you would take care of your family if you lost your job. 11. 9 Think of the Levites. trained others in war. it becomes more and more important that we trust in God to take care of us. and he wanted to do what Jehovah says is right. (Matthew 6:33) This means that we follow what Jehovah thinks is right and what is wrong and not what humans think. he got ready to go to work even though he did not know if he still had a job. 8. When Andrew left his job. How have some shown that they trust in God when they choose work? Give an example. Galatians 5:14. he had no inheritance. such as what to eat. But after they learned the truth. you probably know from your own experience that God never disappoints those who have him as their share and put his service ﬁrst in their lives. Andrew liked his job very much but left it. (Read Isaiah 55:8. Because their work was to lead the nation in pure worship. they had to trust that Jehovah was their share and would take care of their material needs. 2011 11 have done? Jean-Claude knew that if he lost his job. It seemed that. drink.
” (Matthew 17:20) Would you still seek ﬁrst God’s righteousness if that would cause you diﬃculties? If you are not sure whether you could do that. their health. Jesus told the Jews: “Unless you eat the ﬂesh of the Son of man and drink his blood. Now when they think about that time. They can say without any doubt that serving Jehovah is rewarding and that it is the greatest honor a human can have. Andrew and his wife have speak with others in the congregation. a place to live. BE THANKFUL FOR JEHOVAH’S PROVISIONS Do you trust in Jehovah when there is a change in the way we understand a Bible truth? even been able to pioneer. who 13 13.” (Isaiah 59:1) Because they kept their life simple. They said: “This speech is shocking. He says that at times they have been anxious about money. we must trust in Jehovah to give us what we need to keep our friendship with him. 15. We will let Jehovah be our share.)—Ecclesiastes 12:13. We too can trust in Jehovah even when it seems that no one can help us. and just the fact that they are getting older. 14 Do you trust in Jehovah when he helps us to understand “the deep things of God” that are in the Bible? (1 Corinthians 2:10-13) The apostle Peter was an excellent example of someone who did that. he was sure that God would help him. you can be sure that he will give you everything you need. Their experiences about how Jehovah helped them will certainly make your faith stronger. 1 See Awake! November 2009. Think about David. what trust must we have? 14. 12 Jesus told his disciples: “If you have faith the size of a mustard grain. If you treasure serving Jehovah. you will say to this mountain. Andrew and his family can say that these words are true: “The hand of Jehovah has not become too short. 12. pages 12-14.’ and it will transfer. ‘Transfer from here to there. This will show that we value our service to Jehovah no matter what our situation may be. Even though he was hiding in a cave. What should we do when there is a change in the way we understand certain scriptures? Why? .1 (See footnote.12 THE WATCHTOWER ˙ SEPTEMBER 15. What quality do we need to seek ﬁrst God’s righteousness? Give examples from the area where you live.” he was better able to understand what troubled him. (Psalm 73:17) In the same way. 2011 trusted in God and looked for a job. When we work hard in serving Jehovah. Remember that when Asaph came “into the grand sanctuary of God. just as he did for the Levites. and nothing will be impossible for you. you have no life in yourselves.” Many disciples thought that Jesus was talking about literal ﬂesh and blood. But Jehovah has always helped them.
But he trusted that Jehovah was using Jesus to help people understand the truth. whom shall we go away to? You have sayings of everlasting life.”—John 6:53. 15 Peter did not completely understand Jesus’ words. you will value your service to God even more.” (Acts 17:11) If you follow their example. 2011 13 Jeremiah’s example encourages God’s people can listen to it?” They “went oﬀ to the things behind.THE WATCHTOWER ˙ SEPTEMBER 15. You will be truly grateful to have Jehovah as your share. 60. carefully examining the Scriptures daily. 66. .” But Peter said: “Lord. 68. do you try to understand the reasons for the change? (Proverbs 4:18) The Beroeans in the ﬁrst century “received the word with the greatest eagerness of mind. When there is a change in the way we understand a Bible truth today.
You can study his example in chapter 8 of the book God’s Word for Us Through Jeremiah. He never forsakes me. did not care whom her daughter married. gives you? God takes good care of ˇ How can you prove those who do that. The Most High of the universe is listening. He too may have felt lonely. according to 1 Corinthians 7:39? 17. 18 No matter what your situation is. She says: “I try to make Jehovah my conﬁdence. How can single Christians let God be their share.—Psalm 17:8. ‘What can I do to help this person?’ I have joy.” So she tries to help others without expecting anything in return.14 THE WATCHTOWER ˙ SEPTEMBER 15. This sister feels lonely sometimes. when my spirit fainted away within me. was taking care of herself.” (Psalm 142:1-3) Jeremiah served God faithfully for many years as a single person. She wants to get married when she meets the right person. and she is happy in his service. What does one single sister do when she feels lonely? that her daughter had a good job. 18. 2011 WHAT IS YOUR ANSWER? ˇ How can you show that you trust in Jehovah by seeking ﬁrst God’s Kingdom and his righteousness? MARRY ONLY IN THE LORD 16 Another way in which Christians keep God’s purposes in mind is by obeying the Bible’s command to marry “only in the Lord. he can choose you to be his share and lovingly care for you. and was happy.” What has helped her to trust in Jehovah? She answers: “Prayer helps me sense that God is real and that I am never alone. 10. so how could I not feel digniﬁed and joyful?” She trusts what the Bible says: “There is more happiness We obey the Bible’s command to marry “only in the Lord” in giving than there is in receiving. The sister asked her mother if she wanted to be responsible for a bad marriage. as other servants of God did in the past. you can let God be your share. How can you become Jehovah’s share? . (Read Deuteronomy 32:9. But when the mother saw 16. 17) You can then become Jehovah’s share.” (Acts 20:35) She has Jehovah as her share. (2 Corinthians 6:16. She just really wanted her to get married.) Just as Israel became God’s share among the nations. What that you trust did David do when he in God by obeying felt lonely and as if he his command had no one to help him? to marry “only He asked Jehovah for in the Lord”? help. She continues: “When I am thinking. before him I continued to tell about my own distress. Her mother. who is not a Witness. you can be among his happy people. If you do. David said: “Before him I kept pouring out my concern.” (1 Corinthiˇ How can you show ans 7:39) Many decide to that you are grateful stay single rather than to for what Jehovah disobey this command. 17 A sister in the United States said that she has never made the decision to stay single. she stopped talking so much about it.
The apostle Paul wrote about this type of race in his ﬁrst letter to the Christians in ancient Corinth. 2.”—HEBREWS 12:1. But most of the other runners know that they cannot win the race. Some who run in these races are very good runners. What did Paul mean when he said that only one receives the prize? 4. If we live in a way that pleases Jehovah. There are many things that could slow us down in Jehovah’s service or even stop us from serving Jehovah. What do we need to know about the race that Christians run? .”—1 Corinthians 9:24. He was talking about the reason why the runners in races ran. (Matthew 7:13. All Christians who do this can win the prize of everlasting life. They all made great eﬀorts to win. but they also make us think seriously about how we are living. 2 The Bible also talks about a race. did he mean “Let us run with endurance that only one Christian the race that is set before would receive the prize us. That is why all runners trained very well and ran in the best way they could. we have a wonderful hope of living forever either in heaven or in Paradise on earth.15 Run the Race With Endurance ACH year many people around the world run in marathon races. 1. But life as a Christian is like running a very long race on a road with many dangers. 14) This has already happened to some servants 3 3. Those who make the eﬀort to live like Christians and to remain loyal to Jehovah are like runners who want to ﬁnish the race. 4 Those words are encouraging to us. The Christians in Corinth knew that all the runners in a race were determined to win. of life? No. The most important thing to them is just to ﬁnish the race. and they want to win. What does the Bible say is similar to the life of true Christians? THEME So when Paul said SCRIPTURE that only one receives the prize. even though only one runner received the prize. but only one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may attain it. It explains that the life of true Christians is like a race that has a prize. Paul wanted his brothers to make every eﬀort to remain loyal to Jehovah and ﬁnish the race. He E Christians who remain loyal to Jehovah are like runners who ﬁnish a race wrote: “Do you not know that the runners in a race all run.
—Acts 4:1-3. (Hebrews 5:11-14) Some Christians probably thought that it would be easier to live like the Jews around them. 2011 SOME WORDS EXPLAINED ˇ Cloud of witnesses: The many servants of God in the past who showed faith. and now they wanted to stop those who were preaching about him. endurance.) Jesus warned them: “Pay attention to yourselves that your hearts never become weighed down with overeating and heavy drinking and anxieties of life. (Read Luke 21:20-22. These religious leaders had killed Jesus Christ. 7:59. we can read what happened after Pente5. Paul said that they were a large “cloud. 18.”—Luke 21:34. This was especially true of the Hebrew Christians in Jerusalem and Judea because the Jewish religious leaders tried to force people to obey them. 8 Paul wrote to the Hebrew Christians nearly 30 years after Jesus said those words. First we will talk about why Paul wrote this letter to the Hebrews and what he wanted them to do. What might have caused some Christians to slow down in serving Jehovah or even stop? . What made the time that those Christians lived in very diﬃcult? 8.” There were so many that they could not be counted of Jehovah. and he also told them exactly what they should do to stay alive. 8:1. What did the religious leaders try to do to Christians? cost of the year 33. 6:8-12. Also.) mains loyal to God He explained why Chriseven in diﬃcult tians should continue to situations run their race and also what they must do to ﬁnish the race.16 THE WATCHTOWER ˙ SEPTEMBER 15. He told them what would happen just before this destruction. he re(Read Hebrews 12:1. Then we will talk about what we can learn from what he wrote to them. he again talked ˇ Endurance: When someone has about runners in a race. What traps and dangers are there in the race for life? How can you avoid them? What can you do to ﬁnish and win the race? TO WIN WE MUST ENDURE 5 When Paul wrote to the Hebrew Christians in Jerusalem and Judea. 6 The Christians in the ﬁrst century lived during a very diﬃcult time. So life was very diﬃcult for faithful Christians. Jesus had warned them that Jerusalem was going to be destroyed. In the book of Acts. they had even made people believe that Jesus Christ was against the government and was a criminal who deserved to die. 7 Another reason why those Christians lived in a very diﬃcult time was that the destruction of Jerusalem was near. Earlier. What happened to these Christians during those 30 years? Because of problems or because they became worried about their daily needs. They might have thought that this was not wrong because the Jews still believed in God and obeyed most of the Law of Moses. 5:17. there were some people in the congregations 7. some did not continue to learn about Jehovah and keep their friendship with him strong. and suddenly that day be instantly upon you. 3. What did Paul explain at Hebrews 12:1? 6. These leaders attacked the Christians many times to try to stop them from preaching.
Paul told them that to beneﬁt from this sacriﬁce. after you have done the will of God. For yet ‘a very little while. After mentioning the acts of faith of all these servants of Jehovah. 37. and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us. At the end of chapter 10.” what should we remember? . in order that. “A CLOUD OF WITNESSES” Paul said that the servants of Jehovah who lived before the Christian time were a great “cloud of witnesses surrounding us. they needed endurance. 10.”—Hebrews 12:1. 10 In Hebrews chapter 11. Their example would help the Hebrew Christians to endure in diﬃcult situations. He mentioned many men and women who in the past had remained loyal to Jehovah even in very difﬁcult situations. In chapter 10. The “cloud of witnesses” were like experienced runners who had ﬁnished their race. What did Paul say to encourage his Christian brothers to continue living like Christians and to remain loyal to Jehovah? 9 Jehovah inspired Paul to write this letter of encouragement to the Hebrew Christians. In chapter 12. he again encouraged Christians to endure and told them to “run with endurance the race” that was before them. He said: “You have need of endurance. When we think of the example of the great “cloud of witnesses.’ ”—Hebrews 10:1. he ﬁrst explained to them that the Law of Moses was “a shadow of the good things to come” and that only through the sacriﬁce of Jesus could their sins be forgiven. He did so by writing about the things that people with true faith did.THE WATCHTOWER ˙ SEPTEMBER 15.’ and ‘he who is coming will arrive and will not delay. and their example shows that it 11 Noah had faith in what Jehovah promised to do and endured in the work that he had to do is possible for Christians to remain loyal to Jehovah even in very diﬃcult situations. Paul explained what true faith in God is. 2011 17 who were trying to force others to obey the Law of Moses and Jewish traditions. Paul told the Hebrew Christians: “Because we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us. Some Christians believed them. Why did he talk about faith before he again talked about endurance? Because he wanted those Christians to know that to show true faith in Jehovah. let us also put oﬀ every weight and the sin that easily entangles us. you may receive the fulﬁllment of the promise. what did Paul say the Hebrew Christians needed to do? (b) Why did Paul write about the acts of faith of servants of Jehovah in the past? age. 36. Their example would encourage others to continue to run 11. and others listened to them because they were afraid.” They had remained loyal to Jehovah to the end of their lives. (a) At the end of Hebrews chapter 10. they needed endurance and cour9.
” (Genesis 6:22) Noah had many things to do. We can imitate the things they did to please Jehovah and learn from the things that did not please him. and they waited for him to fulﬁll that promise. Their example could give them courage and remind them that it was possible for them to “run with endurance” and ﬁnish their race.—Romans 15:4. then we would do our best to ﬁnish the race. He promised to make from them a nation to serve him. We live in a wicked world and wait for the new world that Jehovah has promised us. 1 Corinthians 10:11. 13. and help his family to have strong faith in Jehovah. For example. he will be our friend and will reward us. What can we learn from the faith of the people Paul talked about? WHAT HELPED THEM TO FINISH THE RACE? What helped these servants of Jehovah to endure in the race and ﬁnish it? Note what Paul wrote about Noah. And it is possible for us too. The Bible says: “He did just so. He promises us that if we do that. And Jehovah saved him and his family and gave them many blessings. So the Hebrew Christians needed to think about the example of those servants of Jehovah in the past. So Noah did not think that it was too difﬁcult to obey Jehovah. And we are living just before Jehovah destroys Satan’s world. But Noah did not think that a ﬂood was impossible. But he had faith in Jehovah. Jehovah asked Abraham and Sarah to leave their home. He did exactly what Jehovah commanded him. It is important for us to think about the life of these faithful people. gather the animals. Moses walked a long way through a dangerous land to go to the Promised Land. so he endured in the work that he had to do. If we were in a race and knew that very good runners were watching us and encouraging us to continue running. He needed to build the ark.18 THE WATCHTOWER ˙ SEPTEMBER 15. Why? Because he had faith that 13 Abraham and Sarah had strong faith in God and obeyed him even in diﬃcult situations Jehovah always does what he says. (Genesis 6:17) A ﬂood had never happened before. 2011 the race. Noah lived just before Jehovah destroyed the world of that time in a ﬂood.) Noah had never seen a ﬂood that destroyed all people and animals. Why was Noah’s situation diﬃcult? What helped him to do everything that Jehovah told him to do? . Jehovah asks us to stop living for ourselves and to live for him. It was not always easy for Noah to do everything that Jehovah commanded him. warn the people about the Flood. 12. store food for his family and for the animals. 12 We can learn from the faith of the people that Paul talked about because many of them were in situations like ours. (Read Hebrews 11:7.
(Romans 4:11) The Hebrew Christians already knew about the life of Abraham and his family. But they had strong faith in Jehovah and obeyed him even in diﬃcult situations. But these were enough to show how strong their faith was. The Bible calls Abraham “the father of all those having faith” because he made 14 14. In what situations did Abraham and Sarah show faith in God? What can we learn from their example? many sacriﬁces for Jehovah. although they did not get the fulﬁllment of the promises. so Paul mentioned only some of their acts of faith. but they saw them afar oﬀ and welcomed them and publicly declared that they were strangers and temporary residents in the land. Paul said about them: “In faith all these died.” (Hebrews . They did not know what would happen to them.THE WATCHTOWER ˙ SEPTEMBER 15.” Their life changed when God told them to leave their home in Ur. 2011 19 Abraham and Sarah were willing to leave behind the comforts of Ur Paul mentioned Abraham and Sarah as part of the “cloud of witnesses surrounding us.
We know that there is a better future that God has promised us. (Deuteronomy 32:51.” Moses left ample of the great his home just as Abra“cloud of witnesses ham did.” Paul also said about Moses: “He continued steadfast as seeing the One who is invisible.” Because they acted improperly at the waters of Meribah. we must have strong faith in God and in his promises.) Moses knew that there was something more important than “the temporary enjoyment of sin. How do we know that Moses did not give up because he could not enter the Promised Land? but you will not go there into the land that I am giving to the sons of Israel. “He looked intently toand Moses? ward the payment of the reward. do this? Paul answered: Abraham. SOME LESSONS FOR US We learned from the life of some of those who are part of the “cloud of witnesses surrounding us” that to ﬁnish the race. They allowed the rebellious people to make them very angry. 17 17. and the One who is your eminent sword?”—Deuteronomy 33:29.” (Read Hebrews 11:24-27. His last words to them were: “Happy you are. a people enjoying salvation in Jehovah.” God is real to us. Why did Moses choose to live the way he did? 16. God told Moses: “From a distance you will see the land. so they acted in a way that did not honor God. the shield of your help. Moses and Aaron did not enter the Promised Land. But we can ﬁnish the race. O Israel! Who is there like you.—2 Corinthians 5:7. That is what helped him to act with great courage and to endure in diﬃcult situations. In the next article. we will talk about some other things that can help us to ﬁnish the race. CAN YOU EXPLAIN? 15. Sarah. He race? chose “to be ill-treated ˇ What have you with the people of God. so we run the race with endurance. 16 Abraham and Moses died before God’s promises to them came true. (Hebrews 11:6) This faith must aﬀect the way we live our life now. We know this because he asked Jehovah to bless the people of Israel.20 THE WATCHTOWER ˙ SEPTEMBER 15. Moses left the surrounding us” help glory and the riches of us to endure in the the king’s palace. (a) What can we learn from the “cloud of witnesses”? (b) What will we talk about in the next article? . And it helped him to work hard to lead the Israelites out of Egypt to the Promised Land. 52) Moses did not give up because he could not enter the Promised Land. 18. 18 The race that Christians run is not easy. Just before the Israelites entered the Promised Land.” God was real to him.” learned from the Why did he choose to examples of Noah. We are able to see “the One who is invisible. and he knew that all of God’s promises would come true. about the acts of faith 15 Moses is another of witnesses in the servant of Jehovah who past? is part of the “cloud of ˇ How does the exwitnesses. 2011 11:13) Their faith in God and their friendship with him helped them to enˇ Why did Paul write dure in the race. He did not think that what God decided was unjust.
” example of some of those —1 CORINTHIANS 9:24. Paul said that these ones were like a great “cloud of witnesses” surrounding them. Their strong faith in God helped them to remain loyal to him to the end of their life. loyal servants of Jehovah. and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us. How can we too ﬁnish the race. They continued running the race to the end. just as they did? Paul said: “Let us also put oﬀ every weight and the sin that easily entangles us. 2 In the previous arti“Run in such a way cle. But he reminded them that they were not alone in that race. In the letter he wrote to them. we talked about the that you may attain it. 2.”—Hebrews 12:1. (a) What did Paul use to encourage the Hebrew Christians? (b) What did Paul say that we must do? THEME they would be deterSCRIPTURE mined to ﬁnish the race.21 Run That You May Attain the Prize T HE apostle Paul used an illustration of a race to encourage the Hebrew Christians. . If the Hebrew Christians always remembered the acts of faith and the eﬀorts of those loyal ones. he said that they were like runners in a race. 1. There were many loyal servants of Jehovah in the past who had already ﬁnished the race.
These were just the normal things of life. Jesus said that they “took no note. To attain the runners of his time the prize means to ran. and we need to take care of ourselves and our family. If we right today. What were they doing? Eating. We should remove anything from our life that could stop us from ﬁnishing the race Jesus explained: “Just as it occurred in the days of Noah. What things in our lives could be like a weight and make it diﬃcult for us to ﬁnish the race? THE WATCHTOWER ˙ SEPTEMBER 15.” This weight includes anything that could stop us from giving our full atten4 1 The ancient Jews thought that this was very shocking. 2011 SOME WORDS EXPLAINED tion to the race and from doing everything we can to ﬁnish it.” 5 Like Noah and his family. and it is good advice for us too. And if we have money problems. (Read Matthew 24:37-39. we will fall want anything to stop and we will not be them from winning the able to ﬁnish our race prize. But Jesus was explaining that the way people live now would be similar to the way people lived before the Flood of Noah’s time. we 5. But the runallow the thinking of ners ran without clothes the world to make us because they did not lose faith. and they did not want to live in a way that pleased him. He spoke about the time of Noah. drinking. This was good advice for the Hebrew Christians. and marrying.” (Luke 17: 26) It is true that the world of our time will end just as the world of Noah’s time ended. This can use a lot of our time and energy.—2 Maccabees 4:7-17. What are some of those things that could be like a weight? Jesus helps us to understand this. What were the people in Noah’s time doing? .” he meant that they should try to remove anything from their lives that could stop them from winning the prize of everlasting life. What can Christians learn from what Paul said about running in the Greek games? 4. (Backgrounds of Early win the prize Christianity) It says: “The ˇ Entangle: Greeks exercised and Clothing that entancompeted in the nude.22 3 Why did Paul say to “put oﬀ every weight”? A book that talks about ˇ Attain: Christians in the time To work hard to get of Paul explains the way something.) To run in around his legs and this way may not seem makes him fall. We need to work to earn money. What can help us to run the race to the end? “PUT OFF EVERY WEIGHT” Paul said to “put oﬀ every weight. 3.) Most people in Noah’s time did not want to learn about God. So when Paul told the Hebrew Christians to “put oﬀ every weight.”1 gles a runner wraps (See footnote. But doing these things was more important to the people than listening to God’s message. we have much to do every day. The apocryphal book of 2 Maccabees says that many Jews were angry when apostate High Priest Jason wanted to have a gymnasium in Jerusalem just as the Greeks had. so it will be also in the days of the Son of man.
‘What are we to put on?’ For all these are the things the nations are eagerly pursuing.” (1 Timothy 6:6) If we listen to Paul’s advice.THE WATCHTOWER ˙ SEPTEMBER 15. But remember what Jesus said about the necessary things of life: “Never be anxious and say. We preach. 10. That is why we must “put oﬀ every weight. This was the advice the apostle Paul gave when he told us to have “godly devotion along with selfsuﬃciency. it will be easier to continue running and win the prize. Jehovah. Noah also had much to do to serve God.” The Greek word that is translated “easily entangles” appears only once in the Bible. a Christian should not allow anything to make it difﬁcult for him to run his race. and we study the Bible with our family and do our personal study. And he said that in the same way. 6 What did Paul mean when he said to “put oﬀ every weight”? He did not mean to remove every responsibility from our lives. but “he did just so. One Bible scholar named Albert Barnes said that a runner of that time was careful not to wear clothing that could wrap around his legs and make it diﬃcult for him to run. and suddenly that day be instantly upon you as a snare. we would be like the nations who are “eagerly pursuing” these things. could become like a weight if they are the most important things in our lives. 7. 7 Do not forget that Jesus said: “Your heavenly Father knows you need all these things. will take care of our needs. A Christian 8. we have other important responsibilities. (Genesis 6:22) It is very important that we do not carry any weight that would make it diﬃcult for us to run the race to the end. 35.” These words show us that our Father. “THE SIN THAT EASILY ENTANGLES US” Paul mentioned something else that we must put oﬀ. He said that we must put oﬀ “the sin that easily entangles us. in this verse. 8 It is as if we can see the ﬁnish line. Why is it dangerous to become anxious about our needs? Jesus said: “Pay attention to yourselves that your hearts never become weighed down with overeating and heavy drinking and anxieties of life. They could stop us from running the race.”—Luke 21:34. 6. Why should we “put oﬀ every weight” now? 9. So we do not want to allow anything to make it diﬃcult for us to ﬁnish the race. to have “all these things” does not mean that we have everything that we would like to have. 32) Jesus was helping us to understand that even the necessary things of life. we prepare for our meetings and attend them.” We must be content to have the things we need. (a) What is the sin that could easily entangle us? (b) What can happen to the faith of a Christian? 9 . Otherwise. Also.” (Matthew 6:31. Some responsibilities are necessary. because we have dedicated our lives to Jehovah. like food and clothing. 2011 23 could become anxious about how to get the things we need every day. ‘What are we to drink?’ or. What words of Jesus should we always remember? So Jesus told us not to be anxious even about the things we need. For your heavenly Father knows you need all these things. Of course. ‘What are we to eat?’ or.” He did everything Jehovah asked him to do.
Earlier in his letter to the Hebrew Christians.” (Hebrews 2:1. that is. 12 The faithful and discreet slave has 11. And they want us to want to do the same 13. If we love the entertainment of this world or want to have every new gadget. If this happens to us. the people we associate with.—Matthew 13:3-9.” He explained that the circumstances we are in. he is busy thinking about other things. that is. or distracted by things in the world. What must we do to avoid thinking like the people in the world? . What might cause us to lose our faith? 12. Maybe he is overconﬁdent.—1 John 2:15-17. overconﬁdent. we are in danger of losing the prize of everlasting life. What warnings are important to obey if we do not want to lose our faith? often warned us to choose carefully what we watch and what we listen to because these things aﬀect how we think and what we desire. it is because of things he has chosen to do. and he may not even realize that his faith is becoming weaker and weaker. we could be so busy with these things that we do not have time for more important things. he could fall. that is. Some have lost their faith because they We have a choice. he usually falls. Satan uses the thinking and desires of the world to make us ignore the warnings. So a runner must realize that if he chooses to run in the wrong kind of clothing. Another scholar talked about “the sin that easily entangles us. And we should not think that because we have strong faith. people in Satan’s world try to make us think like them. these warnings are for others and not for us. This might happen gradually. He said that they should be careful never to “drift away” from the faith and never to develop “a wicked heart lacking faith. They want us to consider important the things they consider important. What might cause a runner to ignore this danger? Maybe he is careless. that is. He does not want us to ﬁnish the race. to weaken his faith or even cause him to lose his faith. 3:12) If the clothing of a runner wraps around his legs. 2011 should not allow anything to entangle him. and our wrong desires can all have a very powerful eﬀect on us. It could be dangerous to reject these warnings because we think that they are too strict. Paul warned them about this danger. We can decide if we will allow the thinking of the world to aﬀect us became careless.24 THE WATCHTOWER ˙ SEPTEMBER 15. What can we learn from all of Paul’s advice? 11 We must remember that if a Christian loses his faith. These things could weaken our faith or even cause us to lose our faith. Or maybe he is distracted. The faithful and discreet slave has also warned us about the danger of always wanting more money and more things. he thinks that he is strong and could never fall. How does a Christian lose his faith? 10 A Christian does not lose his faith suddenly. 13 Every day. he does not pay attention when someone warns him.
2. he was able to say: “I have fought the ﬁne ﬁght. So just as we would not want to breathe poisonous air.things that they do. (Read Ephesians 2:1. 13. he said: “I do not make my soul of any account as dear to me.” He also told them why this was important 15. Paul had worked very hard to preach the good news.—1 Corinthians 11:1. if only I may ﬁnish my course and the ministry that I received of the Lord Jesus. not long before he died. Philippians 3:14. we must never allow the way people in the world think to aﬀect the way we think. HOW “YOU MAY ATTAIN” THE PRIZE How important was it for Paul to ﬁnish the race? When he spoke to the 14.) However.” —2 Timothy 4:7. But this thinking is like poisonous air.” (Acts 20:24) So Paul was willing to sacriﬁce everything. I have observed the faith. (Hebrews 12:2) And we also have the example of the apostle Paul. He is the best example of someone who ran the race to the end. What did Paul encourage his brothers to do? What is “the sin that easily entangles us”? How might it entangle us? . (Read Philippians 3:12. even his life. He encouraged the Christians in Philippi to work hard for their own salvation. Paul said that the thinking of people in the world is like the air that is all around us. He reminded them to keep “a tight grip on the word of life. and we can imitate him. We can decide if we will allow the thinking of the world to aﬀect us.) But we have a choice. He ran the race. What can help us to continue running in the race? The example of Jesus. and he encouraged his brothers to imitate his example. How important was it for Paul to ﬁnish the race? 14 elders from Ephesus for the last time. He did not think that he had already won the prize. But he said that all that effort would have been for nothing if he did not ﬁnish the race. He knew that he had to continue working hard to the end. to ﬁnish the race. I have run the course to the ﬁnish. 15 Paul wanted his brothers to ﬁnish the race.
They knew that God was helping them then. 24-26) Paul said that each of these people acted “by faith. The race that Christians run is similar. it is possible for us to “put oﬀ every weight and the sin that easily entangles us. 2011 to him: “That I may have cause for exultation in Christ’s day. He ˇ Why must the prize said: “Run in such a way be real to us? that you may attain it. by meeting together with our brothers who are trying to build up their own faith. promises us. we can “consider one another to incite to love and ﬁne works. This will help DO YOU REMEMBER? If we have strong faith. he is even more determined to ﬁnish. that I did ˇ How can we put oﬀ not run in vain or work “every weight”? hard in vain. Jehovah. and it is as if we can see the ﬁnish line.” (Hebrews 12:1) Also. The prize must be real to us.” 16. and they knew that his promises for the future would come true. Because Jehovah will help us and because we have strong faith in him. 17 Paul wrote: “Faith is the assured expectation of things hoped for. Why should the prize be real to us? 17.” (Hebrews 11:1) Abraham and Sarah were willing to leave a comfortable home and live as “strangers and temporary residents in the land. They did not allow any diﬃcult situation to make them forget the prize. 18 We can think deeply about the faithful men and women of Hebrews chapter 11. 18. the prize will be real to us even in diﬃcult situations us to be determined to ﬁnish the race and win the prize. What should we do to avoid not ﬁnishing the race? 19.” —1 Corinthians 9:24. Why is it important to continue running the race now? . How does faith make the prize real to us? How were they able to do this? The things that God had promised were real to them. 19 We are near the end of our race. so the prize was always real to them.” (Philippiˇ What might cause a ans 2:16) He also encourChristian to lose his aged the Christians in faith? Corinth to continue running to win the prize.26 THE WATCHTOWER ˙ SEPTEMBER 15.” How did he have the faith and strength to do this? He “looked intently toward the payment of the reward.” They had strong faith.” We can continue running and attain the prize that our Father.” Moses rejected “the temporary enjoyment of sin” and “the treasures of Egypt. the evident demonstration of realities though not beheld. and we can imitate their example.”—Hebrews 10:24. And when he knows that the end of the race is near.” (Hebrews 11:8-13. This can help us to build up our faith and put oﬀ “the sin that easily entangles us. “They saw them afar oﬀ. 16 A runner in a long race does not see the ﬁnish line until the end. But he is always thinking about the ﬁnish line and knows that it is getting closer.
we need to keep ourselves in the love of God. They are precious to God.) So you can be sure that you are serving Jehovah because he wants you to. He will never leave those he invited to be his friends if We need faith and humility to be friends of God they continue to be faithful to him. your whole heart. the Bible shows that it is possible to drift away or draw away from God and no longer be his friend. soul. or invites them. Some believe that they are not worth anything. (Read Jude 20. John 6:44.” to serve Jehovah with —2 TIMOTHY 2:19. 2 Many people today say that they love God. why did you do it? The Bible says that Jehovah knows hearts and that he ﬁnds the people who are “desirable” to him.27 Are You Known by Jehovah? NE day a Pharisee asked Jesus: “Which is the greatest commandment in the Law?” Jesus answered: “You must love Jehovah your God with your whole heart and with your whole soul and with your whole mind. saying: “I have observed the commandments of the Father and remain in his love.”—John 15:10. mind. But there are some important questions that we need to think about: What does Jehovah think of me? Can I say that Jehovah “knows” me or that I have Jehovah’s approval? Does Jehovah think of me as someone who belongs to him? (2 Timothy 2:19) It is wonderful to think that we can have such a close friendship with the most important person in the universe! 3 But it is hard even for some who love Jehovah to think that they can be friends with God. It is so good to know that Jehovah sees us in a diﬀerent way. and strength? If you dedicated your life to Jehovah and got baptized. (Hebrews 4. they think that they cannot belong to Jehovah. (Read Haggai 2:7. 4 Now that Jehovah has drawn us. Of course. That is why Jesus.” (Matthew 22:35-37) Jesus had great love for Jehovah. Why is it hard for some to believe that they can belong to Jehovah? What can help them change this way of thinking? O THEME (1 Samuel 16:7) Think SCRIPTURE about this: Why are you reading this magazine? “Jehovah knows those Why are you trying hard who belong to him. just before he died. (a) What did Jesus care about? (b) What questions should we think about? 3. could talk about his faithful obedience to God. The way he lived showed that he really cared about what Jehovah thought of him. Because of that. to be his friends. we say that too. 21. He then “draws” them. 1. and he loves them very much. 2.) Remember.—Psalm 94:14. Why should we always think about how precious our friendship with Jehovah is? .
He knew that God’s promises always come true. 13) For example. We can learn important lessons from these examples. what did Abraham do? (b) In what way did Jehovah really know Abraham? .) Does Jehovah know us as people who have faith like Abraham’s? 7. his work. Jehovah really knew Abraham. 5 There are some qualBeing known by ities we need if we want Jehovah: Having to be known by JehoJehovah’s approval vah. just before the words at 2 Timothy 2:19. the Kohathite Levite: apostle Paul talked about Levite who served at Hymenaeus and Philetus. (a) Because he had faith in Jehovah’s promises. We will also look at a man who was proud and because of that was rejected by God. He does not cious our friendship with get angry easily Jehovah is. We ship in Israel.) This means that Jehovah not only knew that Abraham existed but also loved him as a friend. 23.28 THE WATCHTOWER ˙ SEPTEMBER 15. and he showed this faith in the way he lived his life. —James 2:22. One proof of that was that many years later he was If we wait for Jehovah to act. 1 PeTabernacle: ter 3:4) Two of them are The tent used for worfaith and humility.” (Genesis 22:17. 3:12. SOME WORDS EXPLAINED THE FATHER OF THOSE HAVING FAITH Abraham was a man who “put faith in Jehovah. 7 Jehovah promised Abraham that his descendants would “take possession of the gate” of their enemies and become “like the grains of sand that are on the seashore. but they later ing the ark of the left the truth. He not stay in the truth. he will reward us ready to obey Jehovah’s command and oﬀer his son Isaac as a sacriﬁce to Jehovah. (2 Timothy covenant 2:16-18) Some in the conMeek: gregations in Galatia also A meek person is genleft the truth. (Hebrews 11:17-19) Abraham showed faith in Jehovah’s promises.” He is called “the father of 6 all those having faith. (a) To be known by God. The It seems that these two Kohathites had the men served Jehovah at responsibility of carryone time. and things he owned to go to a distant land. (Genesis 12:1-4. It was will talk about the examtaken from place to ples of two men who were place when the nation loved by Jehovah because moved they showed these qualities. Romans 4:11) Because he had faith.” (Genesis 15:6. Hebrews 11:8-10) Abraham kept his faith strong. the tabernacle. (Gaaccepts instructions latians 4:9) We should aland waits for Jehovah ways remember how preto act. Abraham was willing to leave his home. (Psalm 15:1-5. They did tle and patient. his friends. he continued to have strong faith in Jehovah. what qualities do we need? (b) What examples will we now talk about? 6. 2011 ˇ ˇ ˇ ˇ 2:1. (Read Hebrews 11:13. and that made him special to God. What did Abraham know about Jehovah’s promises? How did he show his faith? 5. 18) Even though these promises did not come true during Abraham’s life. (Read Genesis 18:19.
If a Christian does that. some have chosen forms of health care that go against Bible principles. He will reward us. 9 It would be foolish to go against God’s guidance to try to get what we want. How would Jehovah have felt? What if Abraham had done things his own way and had tried to have a very comfortable 8. having children.” (Psalm 145:16) Some of Jehovah’s promises may not come true as soon as we would like. . Others have accepted work that leaves them no time for their families or for congregation meetings. do we have faith that Jehovah’s promises always come true? life? What if he had decided to make a famous name for himself instead of waiting for Jehovah to act? (Compare Genesis 11:4. and having good health. There is nothing wrong with wanting these things. 2011 29 SHOW YOUR FAITH BY WAITING FOR JEHOVAH TO ACT 8 There may be things that we want very much. If there is something that we want very much but that we cannot have now. 10. Jehovah will not forget about us. But if we continue to live in a way that shows that we have faith like Abraham’s. What are some things that most people want very much? 9. (a) What have some done to get what they want? (b) What do you think about Jehovah’s promises coming true in your life? Like Abraham. For example. This could damage our friendship with Jehovah. is he really trying to be known by Jehovah? Imagine if Abraham had become impatient about God’s promises. Some start a romantic relationship with someone who does not serve Jehovah. But many of us may not get what we want. such as getting married. what will we do? The way we act in this situation may show how strong our faith is.) Would Jehovah have continued to think of him as his friend? 10 What are the things that you want very much? Do you have enough faith to wait for Jehovah to give them to you? He promises to satisfy “the desire of every living thing.THE WATCHTOWER ˙ SEPTEMBER 15. —Hebrews 11:6.
because the whole assembly are all of them holy and Jehovah is in their midst. 2011 ONE EXAMPLE OF HUMILITY AND ONE EXAMPLE OF PRIDE 11 We will look at the examples of two men who acted in opposite ways. They told Moses: “That is enough of you. Moses told 12. What had Korah done for many years? . Then 250 other men in the nation joined Korah. Korah thought that there was something wrong with the way Jehovah was leading the nation. 31) It seems Korah was not humble and willing to follow directions that he had been loyal to Jehovah for many years. and because of that. What they did helps us understand that what Jehovah thinks of us depends on how much respect we show for his decisions and way of doing things. Korah was a Kohathite Levite. many in Israel respected him.30 THE WATCHTOWER ˙ SEPTEMBER 15. He wanted to make changes.” (Numbers 16:1-3) This was a very proud way of thinking and acting. They were sure that Jehovah knew them and that they had his approval. Probably he had the opportunity to see what Jehovah had done to free the Israelites through the Red Sea. (Exodus 32:26-29. and he may have helped to carry the ark of the covenant. What happened to Korah’s friendship with God because of his pride? 11. Moses and Korah. They trusted too much in their own way of doing things. He may also have had a part in Jehovah’s judgment against disobedient Israelites at Mount Sinai. Numbers 3:30. 12 But on the way to the Promised Land.
Moses did not get angry with Jehovah or think that Jehovah was not showing him respect because he gave him many detailed instructions. What can we learn from what proud Korah did? . you may sometimes feel discouraged. listening to the Israelites complaining.THE WATCHTOWER ˙ SEPTEMBER 15. (Exodus 39:32) This was a humble way of thinking and acting. 13. But Jehovah is a perfect overseer. OBEDIENCE TO JEHOVAH REQUIRES HUMILITY We can have Jehovah’s approval only if we accept adjustments that are made. 14. In what ways did Moses show that he was humble? Like Moses. He knew that Jehovah is a righteous God “with whom there is no injustice. For example.—Read Exodus 33: 12. because of them: “Jehovah will make known who belongs to him. Moses did not think that Jehovah was taking away his freedom. He was “by far the meekest of all the men who were upon the surface of the ground. Moses knew that it was Jehovah’s work and that Jehovah was simply using him to do it.” (Read Numbers 16:5. 13. 2011 31 14 Moses showed that he was humble even when he had reasons to be disappointed. But he was humble and accepted Jehovah’s decision. —Numbers 16:31-35. Korah and all those who had joined him were dead. 32:4) Today. Moses was not going to get what he had expected for so long! What did Moses do? He was of course disappointed. 13 Moses was the opposite of Korah. For example. 40:16) We do not read in the Bible that Moses was always disagreeing with Jehovah’s way of doing things or that he got angry because he had to follow instructions from Jehovah. And now. Jehovah told Moses that he would not be allowed to lead the people into the Promised Land. What do we do when these men make decisions or change 15 15.) By the end of the next day. (Exodus 26:1-6) If an overseer in God’s organization gives you very speciﬁc instructions about things. Moses told the workers to do exactly as Jehovah had commanded them. Because of that. (Exodus 7:6. He gives his servants work to do.” (Numbers 12:3) He showed that he was meek and humble by doing exactly what Jehovah had commanded him. Jehovah gave very specific instructions about how to build the tabernacle.” (Deuteronomy 3:25-27. when the people complained that they had no water. These instructions included the color of the thread and the number of loops the Israelites should use to make the tent cloths. And we need to show respect for those Jehovah uses to lead the congregation. Moses got very angry with them and did not give glory to Jehovah. and he trusts that they will do it well. when we think of Moses. there is a good reason for it. (Numbers 20:2-12) Moses and Aaron had suﬀered for many years. When he gives many details. we think of someone who was known by Jehovah. we should humbly accept instructions that one mistake.
the faith of Abraham? Korah thought that Moses ˇ What lessons can we was just an old man maklearn from Korah and ing his own decisions. Because Korah acted like that. They were proud ˇ How can you imitate and showed little faith. 17 17. Korah should have waited for Jehovah to act. we will have Jehovah’s approval. What can help us to continue to have Jehovah’s approval? www. If we are humble and obedient. His example shows how it could be possible for us to draw away from Jehovah and no longer be his friends. —Psalm 37:18.org ws11 09/15-E . Jehovah could have helped him understand why things were the way they were or could have changed things if needed. but Moses? he forgot that it was really Jehovah who was guiding the nation. So continue to make an eﬀort to show such qualities as faith and humility. Those who have his approval have a happy life now and will have wonderful blessings in the future. As a result. We usually think of him as someone who disobeyed Jehovah because of Are you known his pride. we must be humble. as people who belonged to him. just like us. But Jehovah thought of them as friends. This is a great comfort to us. JEHOVAH KNOWS THOSE WHO BELONG TO HIM It is good for us to think about the examples of those whom Jehovah loved and invited to be his friends. we will be precious to him. They will make you even more precious to our wonderful God. Each of us should think about questions like: What does Jehovah think of me? What can I learn from these Bible examples? 18 Jehovah thinks of his faithful servants as people who belong to him. The opposite is what happened to Korah. by Jehovah as 16 What happened to Korah is a warnsomeone who ing for elders and others in the congreis humble and obedient? 16. to be known by Korah and his followers Jehovah? could no longer be God’s friends. Do we show that we are as humble and meek as Moses was? Do we understand and accept that Jehovah uses those who lead the congregation? Do we obey their instructions? Do we control our feelings when we get disappointed? If we do these things. Korah did not show loyalty to those God was using. Abraham and Moses were imperfect and had problems. today we never think of Korah’s years of loyal service to Jehovah. 18. To wait for Jehovah to act and to obey those Jehovah uses to lead the congregation.watchtower. How can Moses’ humble example help us? DO YOU REMEMBER? gation. It is an honor to be known by Jehovah.the way we do things in the congregation? Because they trusted their ˇ What does it mean own way of doing things.
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