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Spain: Jehovah's Witnesses want to cover up a one-million-euro entrepreneurial hole


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Jehovah's Witnesses asked to hide a one-million-euro entrepreneurial hole at a Northern Spain supply firm. The cult appealed to the "peace" of the congregation to pressure the co-owners of the firm and prevent them from reporting the case to ordinary justice.

The case concerns a well-known construction supplies company based in a large northern city. The company, founded in 1975, belongs to a family that has been a member of the Witnesses since it was born.

When one of the parents died in 2014, one of the daughters inherited a share in society. The rest of the capital remained in the hands of his relatives.

"ONE MILLION EUROS"

When the citizen received the shareholding inheritance, she discovered a remarkable puff in the firm in what seemed a solvent company, according to the documents to which this newspaper has been able to access.

According to the documents in the hands of several congregations of Witnesses in the northern area, the partner would have discovered the suspicious sale of an industrial warehouse and diversion of funds.

Likewise, the creation of a very similar company with a similar name emerged, a redirected web portal and an identical telephone. With this stratagem, the parallel merchant would have taken the goodwill, the merchandise and the clientele.

The complainant estimates that the loss caused by the alleged unfair administration totals one million euros, 400,000 euros in diverted funds and 600,000 in goods transferred to society B.

THE WITNESSES SUGGEST TO BE SILENT

As a Jehovah's Witness by birth, the neighbor came to the internal justice of the millenarian cult. Its first complaint of 2014, to which this newspaper was able to accede, suggested that its partners had committed fraud, unfair competition and irregular administration.

The response of the head office of the denomination in Spanish Bethel was very clear. "We want to encourage you to apply the biblical principles in all your decisions and not to be carried away by the emotions," says the letter.

SECOND COMPLAINT

Not content with the answer, the affected ones took another step. They sent an official letter to the headquarters of the Witnesses in which they insisted on indications of fraud. In addition, they called for the creation of an internal committee to investigate what happened.

Again, the leadership of the cult responded ( letter enclosed ) calling on the family to avoid ordinary justice. "Is the money and the rights, or the peace and family unity of the congregation more important to us?" asks a passage from the response letter.

"We are sure," continues the letter, "that as Christians who wish to do things in Jehovah 's way you will strive to follow these and other advice."

PRESSURES

In the rest of the documentation, the affected people emphasize the pressures received.

As the documents read, the businesswoman is affiliated with the denomination's internal justice administration circuit that has been relentless with her even though she would have delivered money to the family society when she needed it.

According to the latest communication with Spanish Bethel, the citizen has now turned to the Witnesses legal department at the world headquarters in the United States to try to reopen the investigation.

 

 

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I am a faithful believer and have "privileges" in the organization. I am also aware of things that most people are not aware of and wouldn't believe even if I told them. (And no, I don't come by this by way of apostate websites and such. I am there at ground zero with eyes on the ground, in first person testimony). These are the types of things that you will never read about in our publications - and for good reason. People would be stumbled - some things are just too outside their field of expe

I'm sure I am not the only one who appreciates your attitude toward these types of things, things we may witness first hand, but which cannot be shared. I believe I have been where you are, and I can share some of the scriptural points that have helped me. If we are concerned to do our best to help keep the local and the world-wide congregation clean, there are cases where direct evidence is not shareable.  We often must focus on general principles or even "lesser" issues or different issue

I have less time lately to participate. Perhaps this night. The issues in this topic realy make feel sad, because the news are regarding my country, and I personally know some of the brothers on jail.  EDIT '[I'm not using my normal PC, the persons I know were mentioned in other post about Spain, this that mention brothers on responsability on the Supreme Court in Spain] At this time I only wish to point out my confidence in that this is Jehocah's people. But, why are we sure all the r

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I am a faithful believer and have "privileges" in the organization. I am also aware of things that most people are not aware of and wouldn't believe even if I told them. (And no, I don't come by this by way of apostate websites and such. I am there at ground zero with eyes on the ground, in first person testimony). These are the types of things that you will never read about in our publications - and for good reason. People would be stumbled - some things are just too outside their field of experience to rationalize within the context of their faith and they wouldn't thank you for knowing about it anyway because they don't want to know. (It would be like asking: "Can you tell me something that's going to kill me?") And yet, none of these things should come as a surprise. The Bible clearly warns us of "wicked men and imposters," men who would advance from bad to worse. Sometimes the things that happen are so "out there" that the only ones you would be able to identify with are faithful men described in God's Word who have experienced similar things that some of us experience in a spiritual sense today. Yes, some men in authority - "stars in Jesus' right hand" are not what they appear to be even though they may appear righteous to men and have a badge of authority. Of course, most people expect imperfection, but there are times when you have to call it what it is: wickedness. (I can't say whether that applies in the case referred to above here since I don't know all the facts and wasn't personally there - even though it looks bad). No, but as referenced above, we "shouldn't be too surprised considering the other kinds of hidden crimes that we already know about." I get elders asking me from all over the place about these things and I respond the best way I can, always honestly, but in a way that will help them maintain their faith in Jehovah and respect for his organization - with the proviso that sometimes that respect is for the authority men may have, but not for who they are. (i.e.. David's respect for Saul, even though Saul, using theocratic resources, was orchestrating a murderous campaign against a faithful servant of Jehovah that went on for years).  

 The short answer is that, our relationship and dedication to Jehovah God should never be dictated by the decisions other humans make, regardless of what "position" they have, or how much we may fell hurt by them. Even when that "position" is viewed by many as being righteous. Power can have a corrupting influence and when men aren't held to account quickly, they can become hardened to do bad. Especially when they have the authority to control matters to hide and protect themselves. To be clear I'm an not pointing or accusing the Governing Body as such - (although there have been some disturbing issues in the past), but rather pointing out the fact that there is no level within the Organization where corruption has not existed at one time or another. (in what year was corruption no longer allowed?  Not yet anyway...) It is also important not to paint with too wide a brush as if the whole organization was bad - based on the choices of a "relatively" few bad apples. When you think about the people you associate with at meetings, the ministry and at conventions, you see that most JW's are good at heart, happy, kind people who want to do what is right and please Jehovah despite their imperfections - just like we are. 

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7 hours ago, b4ucuhear said:

I am also aware of things that most people are not aware of and wouldn't believe even if I told them.

I'm sure I am not the only one who appreciates your attitude toward these types of things, things we may witness first hand, but which cannot be shared. I believe I have been where you are, and I can share some of the scriptural points that have helped me.

If we are concerned to do our best to help keep the local and the world-wide congregation clean, there are cases where direct evidence is not shareable.  We often must focus on general principles or even "lesser" issues or different issues, which may only be similar in their effect or the way in which they show that corruption can be insidious or reach to surprising levels of authority.

7 hours ago, b4ucuhear said:

I get elders asking me from all over the place about these things and I respond the best way I can, always honestly, but in a way that will help them maintain their faith in Jehovah and respect for his organization - with the proviso that sometimes that respect is for the authority men may have, but not for who they are.

I have no idea how it happens, in your case, that elders from all over the place might be asking you about a specific situation. This tells me that whatever the problems, they might have already been sufficiently exposed - as far as it depends upon you.

(Ephesians 5:10-13) 10 Keep on making sure of what is acceptable to the Lord; 11 and stop sharing in the unfruitful works that belong to the darkness; rather, expose them for what they are. 12 For the things they do in secret are shameful even to mention. 13 Now all the things that are being exposed are made evident by the light, for everything that is being made evident is light.

Of course, I have no idea if it is sufficient to follow the Bible's counsel to expose by trying to bring attention to mistakes in a semi-anonymous forum, with a random audience of readers. I'm sure it's not sufficient for my own conscience. But I also realize that if I were to speak out in the congregation itself, I would lose not only privileges, which matter very little in the long run, but would also lose all further opportunities for fellowship with the brotherhood -- that is, unless I was also willing to dishonestly apologize and repent  for speaking the truth.

To the extent possible, I believe that we need to address issues first with the person(s) responsible for the wrongdoing, especially in light of Matthew 18, when we are a party or direct witness to the wrongdoing. If he doesn't listen then we take it to the congregation, whether the global congregation or the local congregation, whichever is more appropriate. Then there comes a point when you might realize you have done all you can. "As far as it depends upon you...."

(1 Timothy 5:24, 25) 24 The sins of some men are publicly known, leading directly to judgment, but those of other men become evident later. 25 In the same way also, the fine works are publicly known and those that are otherwise cannot be kept hidden.

Some Witnesses keep things hidden only for the short-term reputation of the congregation, but this does nothing for both the short-term and the long-term protection of the congregation. If there is any question or doubt about whether an issue needs to be exposed, however, we can apply what Paul said here:

(1 Corinthians 4:5) 5 Therefore, do not judge anything before the due time, until the Lord comes. He will bring the secret things of darkness to light and make known the intentions of the hearts, and then each one will receive his praise from God.

We need not carry a burden of guilt that we did not personally expose something, or bring it to light. We can throw such burdens on Jehovah.

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I have less time lately to participate. Perhaps this night. The issues in this topic realy make feel sad, because the news are regarding my country, and I personally know some of the brothers on jail. 

EDIT '[I'm not using my normal PC, the persons I know were mentioned in other post about Spain, this that mention brothers on responsability on the Supreme Court in Spain]

At this time I only wish to point out my confidence in that this is Jehocah's people. But, why are we sure all the refination happenned in 1918? What if the "best is to come"?

Why have we applied 2Tim 3:1-5 to worldy people, when the context is with no doubt talking about situations INSIDE the congregation? In this way, when I know about this bad news in the congregations I see more proof we are living in the last days!

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9 hours ago, JW Insider said:

Of course, I have no idea if it is sufficient to follow the Bible's counsel to expose by trying to bring attention to mistakes in a semi-anonymous forum, with a random audience of readers. I'm sure it's not sufficient for my own conscience. But I also realize that if I were to speak out in the congregation itself, I would lose not only privileges, which matter very little in the long run, but would also lose all further opportunities for fellowship with the brotherhood -- that is, unless I was also willing to dishonestly apologize and repent  for speaking the truth.

Thank-you for your response it is encouraging to see others maintain their faith in the face of situations that may stumble most others. That is my world too. I totally agree that there are cases where direct evidence is not shareable. And of course few would experience these things themselves anyway and would have a hard to believing them - let alone deal with them. So why be too specific (at least they can tell themselves that it is something they read on the internet and is probably not true - and not be stumbled by what they can't rationalize).

I agree with your statements above and to be sure, I  have always done what was my moral obligation as to bringing attention to these matters directly and following the requirements set out both in God's Word and the clear instructions from the F&DS. Including applying Matthew 18 where appropriate. So in further reference to your very astute observation, I realized the blow back I would receive but have not been "...willing to dishonestly apologize and repent for speaking the truth." As Job stated: "It is unthinkable on my part that I should declare you men righteous! Until I expire I shall not take away my integrity from myself!"     I learned decades ago that once you have done your part, fulfilling your obligation before God to keep the congregation clean, the ball is in their court and you just have to leave matters in Jehovah's hands. Otherwise you may find yourself disfellowshipped.

To be clear, my intention is not to use a semi-anonymous forum to bring attention to mistakes, although that does happen. But when I was experiencing these things, there was no one who I could discuss my feelings with who would understand, let alone believe me - and I didn't want to go around talking about these decidedly negative matters. It is true to say that in some cases, it seemed the only ones I could really identify with were individuals like Jeremiah, Job, David, Joseph, Paul, Jesus...They became my "friends" in faith-testing times. Everyone else it seemed lived in a Disney World where these kinds of things can never happen because Jesus is micromanaging all the elders in his right hand -  and "The son of man will send his angels, and they will collect out from his Kingdom all "things" that cause stumbling and people who are doing lawlessness." (Matt. 13:41) But the reality is that people are stumbled. Does that mean the angels aren't doing their job properly? (In fact, our elder body had to reinstate one brother who was wrongly disfellowshipped for years - yet always maintaining his innocence. It appeared in proclaiming his innocence, he was "not accepting discipline from Jehovah" - but it was all a lie. That happens too often). What could be these "things" that are collected out? Is it individuals we hear about every few years being disfellowshipped? Could be, but "things" being collected out that have caused most people (billions) to stumble for thousands of years are things such as false religious doctrines and practices that dishonor and misrepresent God (hellfire,Trinity, immortal soul, Halloween, Christmas, justifiable warfare, nationalism...) Even if one were to suggest that the referencing of "people who practice lawlessness" is not the the apostate "man of lawlessness," it would still have to be taken within the context of 1Tim. 5;24,25 where some things are brought our sooner and others later. The Bible has many examples to support that and I appreciate your inclusion of that important scripture that helps explain why badness can go on for years, decades or some don't experience justice in their lifetime.

I also found 1 Cor. 11:17-19 informative (not the new Bible but the more literal Kingdom Interlinear - in fact pretty well all other translations) in it's use of "must" (dei) (it is binding; it is necessary; there have to be; ..."there "must" be also be sects among you, that the persons approved may also become manifest among you." In stating there "must" be sects/factions, God's Word isn't suggesting that Jehovah wants badness to happen or that it is part of his purpose. But rather that he allows these things to play out for the same reason he has allowed badness to exist even on a universal scale for a time: to manifest who is who. These types of situations are a revealer of hearts, motives, faith, attitudes...even of men in authority who are also accountable. And as Paul stated regarding himself and others: "...we have become a theatrical spectacle to the world, and to angels, and to men." That's what faithless men miss. They think that as long as they can fool men or control matters, they can get away with it. But faithful men recognize as true what you had quoted above in 1 Cor. 4:5 that secret things will be revealed.

While some may characterize these interchanges as negative talk, the fact is that pretending everything is rosy and nothing bad can ever happen (an exaggeration I know) and that everything men in authority do is by Jesus' direction is simply absurd in the face of plain facts. It is not "encouraging" at all. It's like telling someone in great pain with cancer how great everything is going for you and they must be imagining their situation or lying = not helpful. "Rejoice with people who rejoice; weep with people who weep." Romans 12:15. It is comforting I'm sure to any who have had to face a reality most others have not to have people care enough to offer wisdom, empathy, counsel and understanding in such a way as to help them maintain their faith despite extreme circumstances. 

I also appreciated the application you (JWI) made regarding 1 Cor. 4:5, that is an interesting perspective I had not actually considered. 

 

9 hours ago, ComfortMyPeople said:

Why have we applied 2Tim 3:1-5 to worldy people, when the context is with no doubt talking about situations INSIDE the congregation? In this way, when I know about this bad news in the congregations I see more proof we are living in the last days!

I totally agree with that. I've clearly seen that myself and so have many others (although few would want to say it out loud and at times there would be serious repercussions.) It seems to me that that later we get into the time of the end, the more people reveal who they are within the scope of time, pressure and opportunity. Of course, once again, these traits, although visible at times in the form of imperfection or even wickedness at times, don't characterize the majority of our brothers and sisters who are struggling to swim upstream in Satan's system, cope with their own imperfections, temptations and face the badness of others within. Still, it is there and it's only honest to acknowledge that it exists. After all, how can you protect yourself against something you believe doesn't exist or can never happen? It is good that Jehovah's Word gives us the warnings we need both in examples and in word for our protection. Romans 15:4: "For all the things that were written aforetime were written for out instruction, that through our endurance and through the comfort from the scriptures we might have hope."

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I still remember days when divorce between brothersfraud between brothers… were so strange. Sadly, nowadays the things are changed. No one should be surprised. As mentioned above, the situation in the seven congregations of Revelation were all less pleasant. With only few exceptions. 

Now, regarding the condition of the Christians, true Christians, in the last days:

(2Ti 2:16-26) […] “for they will lead to more and more ungodliness, 17 and their word will spread like gangrene. Hy·me·naeʹus and Phi·leʹtus are among them.+ 18 These men have deviated from the truth, saying that the resurrection has already occurred,+ and they are subverting the faith of some. […] 20 Now in a large housethere are utensils* not only of gold and silver but also of wood and earthenware, and some for an honorable use but others for a use lacking honor. 21 So if anyone keeps clear of the latter ones, he will be an instrument* for an honorable use, sanctified, useful to his owner, prepared for every good work. […] 25 instructing with mildness those not favorably disposed"

Was Paul advising Timothy about problems he will face with people outside or inside the congregation? WereHymenaeus and Philetus worldly persons or vessels lacking of honor in the congregations? I suppose nobody will find it difficult the answer.

Now the problem. The division in chapters. It seems that chapter three starts a new discussion. With wich base? The uninspired numeric division? Our habit in applying these words to world conditions?

Let’s focus now in the famous chapter 3:1-13

But know this, that in the last days+ critical times hard to deal with will be here. 2 For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, haughty, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, disloyal, 3 having no natural affection, not open to any agreement, slanderers, without self-control, fierce, without love of goodness, 4 betrayers, headstrong, puffed up with pride, lovers of pleasures rather than lovers of God, 5 having an appearance of godliness but proving false to its power;+ and from these turn away.  

13 But wicked men and impostors will advance from bad to worse, misleading and being misled.

    Hello guest!

One simple question. Who did Timothy need to turn away from (v.5)? From unbeliever neighbors? In reality, Paul was still speaking about the lack of honor ‘utensils’INSIDE the congregations.

I’m completely optimistic regarding the final result of the future events. But I believe we’re facing trouble times. And I’m not only talking about Gog’s attack.

 

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      La sagesse est plus précieuse que l’or et la crainte envers Jéhovah est notre salut.
       
      La vraie sagesse de Dieu est un cadeau inestimable, car seul ceux qui obéissent et suivent ces préceptes en recoivent les bienfaits. En Psaume 111:10 déclare ceci: “La crainte de Jéhovah est le commencement de la sagesse.”
      Qu’est-ce que cela veut dire? La sagesse est la capacité d’utiliser efficacement sa connaissance et son intelligence pour résoudre un problème, éviter un danger, atteindre un objectif. Elle sous-entend un bon jugement. Le commencement, la première partie, le fondement de cette sagesse, c’est la crainte de Jéhovah. Pourquoi cela? Bien que toute création est l’œuvre de ses mains et dépend de lui. Il a accordé aux humains le libre arbitre, mais pas la faculté de diriger leurs pas avec succès sans tenir compte de sa direction (Josué 24:15; Jérémie 10:23). Nous ne connaîtrons le succès durable qu’à la condition de bien saisir ces idées fondamentales sur la vie, et de nous y conformer. Si notre connaissance de Jéhovah nous donne la ferme conviction que la volonté divine est promise au succès, et qu’il tiendra sa promesse de récompenser ses fidèles, alors la crainte pieuse nous poussera à agir sagement. — Proverbes 3:21-26; Hébreux 11:6.
      Prenons un exemple: Il y a quelques dizaines d’années, un jeune homme fréquentait l’université de Saskatchewan, au Canada. Au programme de sa formation figurait la biologie, et on lui a enseigné l’évolution. Après avoir été diplômé, il s’est spécialisé dans la physique nucléaire, profitant d’une bourse pour continuer ses études à l’université de Toronto. Au cours de ses études, il a constaté dans la structure des atomes révélaient des témoignages stupéfiants d’un ordre et d’une finalité extraordinaire . Mais personnes ne répondait pas à ces questions: Qui a conçu tout cela? Quand? Et pourquoi? Sans ces réponses, pouvait-il utiliser sagement ses connaissances dans un monde remplis interrogations ? Qu’est-ce qui le guiderait? Le nationalisme? Le désir de gratifications matérielles? Avait-il acquis la vraie sagesse?
      Peu après avoir été diplômé, cet homme ainsi que sa femme se sont mis à étudier la Bible avec les Témoins de Jéhovah. Dans la Parole de Dieu, ils ont peu à peu trouvé les réponses qui leur manquaient. Ils ont appris à connaître le Créateur, Jéhovah Dieu. En étudiant ce qui est arrivé à Moïse à la mer Rouge, à Daniel et à ses compagnons à Babylone, ils ont appris l’importance de craindre Dieu, et non les hommes (Exode 14:10-31; Daniel 3:8-30). Cette crainte pieuse mêlée d’un amour sincère pour Jéhovah a commencé à les animer. Rapidement, leur vie a changé. Enfin cet homme connaissait Celui dont il avait étudié l’œuvre en biologie. Il a progressivement compris le dessein de Celui dont il avait constaté la sagesse dans ses cours de physique. Au lieu d’employer sa connaissance à élaborer des instruments de destruction, il a choisi, avec sa femme, d’aider autrui à aimer Dieu et son prochain. Ils ont entrepris le service de prédicateurs du Royaume de Dieu à plein temps. Par la suite, ils ont suivi les cours de Galaad, l’École biblique de la Société Watchtower, et ont été nommés missionnaires.
      Bien entendu, tout le monde ne peut pas être missionnaire. Mais tous nous pouvons bénéficier de la sagesse fondée sur la crainte de Jéhovah. Si nous cultivons cette sagesse, nous ne consacrerons pas le meilleur de notre vie à étudier les philosophies humaines, qui n’échafaudent que des suppositions sur le but de la vie. Nous nous appliquerons à l’étude de la Bible, livre inspiré de Jéhovah Dieu, la Source de la vie, celui qui peut nous donner la vie éternelle (Psaume 36:9; Colossiens 2:8). Au lieu de nous rendre esclaves d’un système commercial chancelant, au bord de la ruine, nous écouterons Jéhovah, qui nous conseille de nous contenter de la nourriture et du vêtement, et d’accorder à nos relations avec lui la priorité dans notre existence (1 Timothée 6:8-12). Au lieu de nous comporter comme si notre avenir dépendait d’une belle situation dans le monde actuel, nous croirons la Parole de Jéhovah, qui nous affirme que le monde est en train de passer, de même que le désir du monde, alors que celui qui fait la volonté divine demeure pour toujours. — 1 Jean 2:17.
      Dans le livre de Proverbes 16:16, Salomon nous encourage par cette déclaration certaine: “Acquérir la sagesse [la sagesse qui commence par la crainte de Jéhovah], oh! combien cela vaut mieux que l’or! Et acquérir l’intelligence est préférable à l’argent.” Poussés par cette sagesse et cette intelligence, nous considérerons l’accomplissement de la volonté de Dieu comme le premier centre d’intérêt de notre vie. Et quelle activité Dieu a-t-il confiée à ses Témoins en cette période de l’histoire humaine? Faire connaître son Royaume par la prédication et aider les personnes sincères à devenir de vrais disciples de Jésus Christ (Matthieu 24:14; 28:19, 20). Il s’agit d’une activité dont on retire une satisfaction véritable et un grand bonheur. C’est donc à propos que la Bible dit: “Heureux l’homme qui a trouvé la sagesse, et l’homme qui acquiert le discernement.” — Proverbes 3:13.
      Elle nous retient de commettre le mal
      Un deuxième bienfait que nous procure la crainte de Dieu est qu’elle nous retient de commettre le mal. Celui qui respecte profondément Dieu ne détermine pas par lui-même ce qui est bien et mal. Il ne tient pas pour mauvais ce que Dieu déclare bon, ni ne considère comme bon ce que Dieu déclare mauvais (Psaume 37:1, 27; Ésaïe 5:20, 21). De plus, celui que motive la crainte pieuse ne se contente pas de savoir ce que Jéhovah déclare bon ou mauvais. Une telle personne aime ce que Jéhovah aime et elle hait ce que Jéhovah hait. En conséquence, elle agit en harmonie avec les préceptes divins. Ainsi, comme le dit Proverbes 16:6, “par la crainte de Jéhovah, on se détourne du mal”. Cette crainte pieuse devient une motivation puissante qui permet d’atteindre des résultats qu’on n’obtiendrait pas même si une personne commence tout juste à l’éprouver, la crainte pieuse peut lui donner le courage de ne pas faire quelque chose qu’elle regretterait le restant de ses jours. Au Mexique, par exemple, une femme enceinte a demandé à une chrétienne Témoin de Jéhovah ce qu’elle pensait de l’avortement. La chrétienne lui a lu plusieurs versets bibliques, puis lui a tenu ce raisonnement: “Pour le Créateur, la vie est très importante, même la vie de ceux qui ne sont pas encore nés.” (Exode 21:22, 23; Psaume 139:13-16). Des examens laissaient entendre que le bébé serait anormal. Néanmoins, après ce qu’elle avait vu dans la Parole de Dieu, cette femme a décidé de garder son enfant. Son médecin a refusé de la revoir, et son mari l’a menacée de la quitter, mais elle a tenu bon. Elle a finalement donné naissance à une magnifique petite fille, normale et en bonne santé. Par gratitude, elle a recherché les Témoins et s’est mise à étudier la Parole de Dieu avec eux. Moins d’un an après, son mari et elle se faisaient baptiser. Quelques années plus tard, à une assemblée de district, tous deux ont été enchantés de rencontrer la chrétienne qui avait parlé à la femme la première fois. Ils lui ont présenté leur jolie fillette de quatre ans. Incontestablement, le respect de Dieu et le désir puissant de ne pas lui déplaire exercent une grande influence.
      La crainte pieuse peut nous garder d’un grand nombre de mauvaises actions (2 Corinthiens 7:1). Cultivée avec soin, elle est capable d’aider quelqu’un à mettre un terme à des péchés cachés, connus de lui seul et de Jéhovah. Elle peut l’aider à se libérer de la dépendance de l’alcool ou de la drogue. Un ancien drogué d’Afrique du Sud a raconté: “Au fur et à mesure que j’apprenais à connaître Dieu, la crainte de le décevoir ou de lui déplaire grandissait en moi. Je savais qu’il m’observait, et je désirais ardemment son approbation. Cela m’a incité à me débarrasser de la drogue qui était en ma possession en la jetant dans les toilettes.” La crainte pieuse a aidé des milliers de personnes de la même manière. — Proverbes 5:21; 15:3.
      La crainte salutaire de Dieu nous préserve également de la crainte de l’homme. La plupart des humains connaissent, à des degrés divers, la crainte de l’homme. Les apôtres de Jésus Christ l’ont abandonné et se sont enfuis lorsque les soldats se sont emparés de lui dans le jardin de Gethsémané. Plus tard, dans la cour du grand prêtre, désarçonné et en proie à la crainte, Pierre a nié faire partie des disciples de Jésus et même le connaître (Marc 14:48-50, 66-72; Jean 18:15-27). Mais grâce à l’aide qu’ils ont reçue, les apôtres ont retrouvé leur équilibre spirituel. Par contre, aux jours du roi Jéhoïakim, Urie, fils de Schémaïah, fut terrassé par la crainte au point d’abandonner son service de prophète de Jéhovah et de fuir le pays, ce qui ne l’empêcha pas d’être capturé et tué. — Jérémie 26:20-23.
      Comment vaincre la crainte de l’homme? 
      Après nous avoir prévenus que “trembler devant les hommes, voilà ce qui tend un piège”, Proverbes 29:25 ajoute: “Mais celui qui se confie en Jéhovah sera protégé.” La réponse tient donc dans la confiance en Jéhovah. Cette confiance s’appuie sur la connaissance et l’expérience. L’étude de sa Parole nous démontre que les voies de Jéhovah sont droites. Nous découvrons des événements attestant qu’il est digne de confiance, que ses promesses sont sûres (y compris celle de la résurrection), qu’il est amour et qu’il est tout-puissant. Lorsqu’ensuite nous agissons conformément à cette connaissance, accomplissant ce que Jéhovah demande et rejetant fermement ce qu’il condamne, nous commençons à constater dans notre propre cas qu’il prend soin de ses serviteurs avec amour et que l’on peut compter sur lui. Nous acquérons personnellement la certitude que sa puissance est à l’œuvre pour que s’accomplisse sa volonté. Notre confiance en lui s’accroît, de même que notre amour pour lui et notre désir sincère de ne pas lui déplaire. Cette confiance est bâtie sur un fondement solide. Elle est un rempart contre la crainte de l’homme.
      Notre confiance en Jéhovah, alliée à la crainte pieuse, nous rendra fermes en faveur du bien dans le cas où un employeur menacerait de nous renvoyer si nous refusions de participer à des pratiques commerciales malhonnêtes (voir Michée 6:11, 12). Grâce à cette crainte pieuse, des milliers de chrétiens persévèrent dans le vrai culte malgré l’opposition de membres de leur famille. Elle donne aussi aux jeunes le courage de se faire connaître comme Témoins de Jéhovah à l’école, et elle les affermit face aux moqueries de leurs camarades de classe qui méprisent les principes bibliques. Ainsi, une adolescente Témoin de Jéhovah a dit: “Ce qu’ils pensent m’est bien égal. L’important, c’est ce que pense Jéhovah.”
      La même conviction donne aux vrais chrétiens la force de rester attachés aux voies de Jéhovah lorsque leur vie est en jeu. Ils savent qu’ils risquent d’être persécutés par le monde. Ils sont conscients que les apôtres ont été fouettés et que même Jésus Christ a été frappé et tué par des hommes méchants (Marc 14:65; 15:15-39; Actes 5:40; voir aussi Daniel 3:16-18). Mais les serviteurs de Jéhovah sont assurés qu’il peut leur donner la force d’endurer, qu’avec son aide ils peuvent remporter la victoire, que Jéhovah récompensera sans faute ses fidèles, si besoin en les ressuscitant dans son monde nouveau. Leur amour pour Dieu ajouté à la crainte pieuse les pousse puissamment à éviter toute action qui pourrait lui déplaire.
      C’est parce qu’ils étaient animés d’une telle motivation que les Témoins de Jéhovah ont supporté les horreurs des camps de concentration nazis dans les années 30 et 40. Ils ont pris à cœur le conseil de Jésus consigné en Luc 12:4, 5: “D’autre part, je vous le dis à vous, mes amis: Ne craignez pas ceux qui tuent le corps, et qui après cela ne peuvent rien faire de plus. Mais je vais vous indiquer qui vous devez craindre: craignez celui qui, après avoir tué, a le pouvoir de jeter dans la Géhenne. Oui, je vous le dis, Celui-là, craignez-le.” Par exemple, Gustav Auschner, un Témoin qui avait été interné dans le camp de concentration de Sachsenhausen, a écrit plus tard: ‘Les SS ont exécuté August Dickmann et ont menacé de nous passer tous par les armes si nous refusions de signer un document par lequel nous abjurions notre foi. Pas un seul n’a signé. Notre crainte de déplaire à Jéhovah était plus forte que la crainte de leurs balles.’ La crainte de l’homme mène aux compromis, mais la crainte de Dieu nous affermit pour faire le bien.
      La préservation de la vie
      Noé a connu les derniers jours du monde antédiluvien. Jéhovah avait décidé de détruire le monde d’alors en raison de la méchanceté des humains. Toutefois, en attendant, Noé a vécu dans un monde où régnaient la violence, l’immoralité sexuelle choquante et le mépris de la volonté divine. Noé a prêché la justice, et pourtant “ils ne s’aperçurent de rien jusqu’à ce que le déluge vînt et les emportât tous”. (Matthieu 24:39.) Noé n’a cependant pas renoncé à l’activité que Dieu lui avait confiée. Il fit “selon tout ce que Dieu lui avait ordonné. Ainsi fit-il”. (Genèse 6:22.) Qu’est-ce qui a permis à Noé, année après année et jusqu’au déluge, de toujours agir comme il convenait? Hébreux 11:7 répond: “Par la foi, Noé, divinement averti de choses qu’on ne voyait pas encore, fit montre d’une crainte pieuse.” Pour cette raison, sa femme, ses fils, leurs femmes et lui ont été sauvés du déluge.
       Notre époque ressemble de bien des manières à celle de Noé (Luc 17:26, 27). De nouveau un avertissement est lancé. Révélation 14:6, 7 parle d’un ange qui vole au milieu du ciel et invite les gens de toute nation et tribu et langue à ‘craindre Dieu et à lui donner gloire’. Quel que puisse être le comportement du monde autour de vous, obéissez à ces paroles, puis transmettez l’invitation à autrui. À l’instar de Noé, agissons avec foi et manifestons une crainte pieuse. Par cela, des vies peuvent être sauvées: la vôtre et celle de nombre de vos semblables. Lorsque nous considérons les bienfaits dont profitent ceux qui craignent le vrai Dieu, nous ne pouvons que souscrire aux paroles du psalmiste divinement inspiré qui chanta: 
      “Heureux est l’homme qui craint Jéhovah, dans les commandements de qui il prend grand plaisir!” — Psaume 112:1.

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    • Darlene  »  T.B. (Twyla)

      I can not open study material 
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    • Darlene  »  T.B. (Twyla)

      Can not open weekly study material 
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