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The Lord told Watchtower President Joseph "Judge" Rutherford to start the individual hour requirements and return visits for JW.org


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Pg. 205, July 1 1943, Watchtower

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    • By Jack Ryan
      4440 Braeburn Road, residence complete January 13, 1930. Two months later, the public was introduced to Beth-Sarim in a front-page article in the San Diego Sun titled, “San Diego Mansion — With All Modern Improvements — Awaits Earthly Return of Prophets.” It opened by reporting: “In one of the strangest deeds ever filed in the nation, Rutherford, president of the International Bible Students Association and of the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society, has put the huge tile-roofed home in fashionable Kensington Heights in perpetual trust for the ancient kings and prophets of Palestine” (emphasis added). The article went on to observe that “Judge Rutherford is intensely proud of the house he has planned and built for David, king of Israel; Samson…Joseph…and others equally as famous in the Bible.” .

      The following January, the San Diego Sun carried another article on Beth-Sarim, “David’s House Waits for Owner.” When the reporter asked Rutherford how he thought the returned princes would look, Rutherford responded: “‘As perfect men. I interpret that to mean…that David, Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jepthae, Joseph and Samuel will be sent here to wrench the world from Satan’s grasp, clothed in modern garb as we are, and able, with little effort to speak our tongue.’ Rutherford pictured the arrival of the biblical delegation perhaps in frock coats, high hats, canes and spats.” Rutherford’s booklet, What You Need(1932), depicted the seven “Ancient Worthies,” identified as “Earth’s new rulers,” in more traditional biblical garb. . San Diego, 1930's, is a pivotal time for the JW's. The following year the JW'S got the official name ot "Jehovah's Witnesses",Watchtower bible tract Society. Then began the growth of the vast Jehovah's Witness population in San Diego County.
       
      Watchtower President Joseph Franklin Rutherford & Beth Sarim   

       
    • By Jack Ryan
      “Error always seeks the dark, while truth is always enhanced by the light. Error never desires to be investigated. Light always courts a thorough and complete investigation. Light and truth are synonymous”
      - J.F. Rutherford. "Millions Now Living Will Never Die", page 14.
    • By The Librarian
      w1943_E.pdf
       
       
      Part of the ...
       
    • By JW Insider
      This forum currently contains a recent topic where the subject of the 1918 imprisonment and 1919 release of Rutherford and his associates has come up. There is a lot of misinformation under that topic. I'm no expert on the subject, but it's still obvious that even some who present themselves as experts can be misinformed.
      There is plenty of documentation and verifiable information out there on the topic, and while there's no real shame in being misinformed, we should be careful not to present ourselves as experts. When a person presents themselves as an expert, their misinformation becomes disinformation. We should strive for honesty.
      And it's not that going back to this history is necessarily all that important, but our publications have made it part of fulfilled Bible prophecy, and therefore any mishandling of information about it becomes all the more serious. Also, sometimes when such historical topics are brought up some Witnesses are quick to complain that there is no reason to go back and rehash that old material. Note however, that it is our recent books and Watchtower magazines that regularly bring up such material for review. The "God's Kingdom" book discusses it. Even one of the most recent Watchtowers brings it up again (October 2019 Watchtower):
      *** w19 October p. 3 1919—One Hundred Years Ago ***
          While the eight brothers were imprisoned, faithful Bible Students circulated a petition calling for their release. These brave brothers and sisters gathered more than 700,000 signatures. On Wednesday, March 26, 1919, before the petition was submitted, Brother Rutherford and the other responsible brothers were released.
           In a speech to those who welcomed him home, Brother Rutherford said: “I am convinced that this experience we have all gone through is merely to prepare us for more strenuous times. . . . Your fight has not been to get your brethren out of prison. That was merely a side issue. . . . The fight you have been making has been for the purpose of witnessing for the Truth, and those who have done it have received a wonderful blessing.”
           The circumstances surrounding the trial of our brothers may give indication of Jehovah’s direction. On May 14, 1919, the appeals court ruled: “The defendants in this case did not have the . . . impartial trial to which they were entitled, and for that reason the judgment is reversed.” The brothers had been convicted of serious crimes, and these judgments would have remained on their records if they had only been pardoned or if their sentences had merely been commuted. No further charges were laid. As a result, Judge Rutherford retained his legal qualifications to defend Jehovah’s people before the Supreme Court of the United States, something he did many times after his release.
      I won't personally get back to this topic for up to a day or so, but welcome anyone with information to present what they know about it, or have heard about it. We can start with our own publications and Wikipedia, of course. But anything that seems like valuable information or interesting questions could be presented for evaluation by all who are serious about such history.
    • Guest Nicole
      By Guest Nicole
    • By JW Insider
      There are a variety of views about Joseph Rutherford even among the older Witnesses who knew him. All ideas are welcome. I wrote a posting below initially in response to a non-Witness looking to start a dialog.
    • By Jack Ryan
      Counting time in the field ministry
    • By The Librarian
      “More than conquerors through him that loved us”. (Romans 8: 37)
      w-E * Watchtower
      Your Word is Truth! - Watchtower from Canada during the war years. (we need more copies of this!)
      g-E * Consolation
      yb-43E * Yearbook of Jehovah’s Witnesses
      INFORMANT
      fd * Freedom in the New World
      fl43 * Fighting for Liberty on the Home Front
      tf * “The Truth Shall Make You Free”
      Report of the "Free Nation's Theocratic Assembly of Jehovah's Witnesses
      The Truth Shall Make You Free Study Questions
      Presenting "This Gospel of the Kingdom" - Australia
      West Virginia State Board of Education vs. Barnette - United States Supreme Court Case

      Side note:
      Lacking the personal magnetism and charisma of Russell and Rutherford, Knorr focused followers' devotion on the 'Mother' organization rather than on himself.
      After decades of publishing books and booklets authored by its presidents Russell and Rutherford, the Watchtower Society began producing literature that was written anonymously. But it was not impersonal, since the organization itself was virtually personified, and readers were directed to "show our respect for Jehovah's organization, for she is our mother and the beloved wife of our heavenly Father, Jehovah God." (The Watchtower, May 1, 1957, p. 285)
      Part of the ....
       
    • By The Librarian
      yb1943_E.pdf
       
      Part of the ....
       
       
    • By Jack Ryan
      Few Witnesses are aware that Rutherford had a reputation as a drinker. In his book “Apocalypse Delayed: The Story of Jehovah’s Witnesses,” retired professor Jim Penton remarks…
      Penton goes on to relate an open letter of complaint to Rutherford by Walter Salter, who had been one of his closest friends and confidants before breaking with him over doctrinal issues. In his letter, dated April 1, 1937, Salter complained of Rutherford’s excessive drinking, and of the fact that he bought large quantities of alcohol using Society funds. He bemoaned the fact that Rutherford “sends us out from door to door to face the enemy while he goes from ‘drink to drink’ and tells us if we don’t we are going to be destroyed.”

       
    • By Queen Esther
      PS. Forget  the  hours...   we  not  should  compare  us  with  other  Brothers  or  families !  Jehovah  is  always  knowing  what  we  can  do  and  what  NOT !   A  CO.  said  before  longer  time,  when  we  want  go  but  not  can    For  JAH  its  so,  as  we  were  gone....  thats  LOVE   YES,  thats  our  GOD !   HE  *IS*  LOVE...  always  seeing  our  positive  things !  We  humans  get  long  time  to  learn  that,  1000 years    May  Jehovah  bless  you  and  your  family,  Brother  RJ...  Greetings  from  Germany,  AGAPE !
    • By The Librarian
      Hi there, My name is RJ and for two days I have been nonstop searching for clarification on counting time with unbaptized children. The organized to do Jehovah's will briefly talks about it. It states that a family head can count the time, study, and return visits for family worship. I understand that part. 4 hours per month, 4 return visits per month, and one study. Here is my dilemma, under the same sub-heading as that part it states that we count time, return visits, and bible studies for any one whom we study with that is unbaptized. I have four children and not only do we have our weekly family worship but each child also has their own independent study as well, age appropriate material for each child. So my question is, where can I find clarification of the situation? I was told no matter what you do with your family max is 4hr/ month, 4R.V./month, and one study/ month, however they are all unbaptized bible students. Thank you for your time and patience. - Brother RJ
    • Guest Nicole
      By Guest Nicole
      Do the JWs that teach people how to read and write count their time the same as they would if spent in field service?
    • By The Librarian
      Joseph Franklin Rutherford (November 8, 1869 – January 8, 1942), also known as "Judge" Rutherford, was the second president of the incorporated Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. , and played a primary role in the organization and doctrinal development of Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. ,[1][2][3] which emerged from the Bible Student movement established by Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. .
      Rutherford began a career in law, working as a court stenographer, trial lawyer and prosecutor. He developed an interest in the doctrines of Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.  president Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. , which led to his joining the Bible Student movement and was baptized in 1906. He was appointed the legal counsel for the Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.  in 1907, as well as a traveling representative prior to his election as president in 1917. His early presidency was marked by a dispute with the Society's board of directors, in which four of its seven members accused him of autocratic behavior and sought to reduce his powers. The resulting leadership crisis divided the Bible Student community and contributed to the loss of one-seventh of adherents by 1919 and thousands more by 1931.[4][5][6] Rutherford and seven other Watch Tower executives were imprisoned in 1918 after charges were laid over the publication of Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. , a book deemed "seditious" for its opposition to World War I.[7][8] Rutherford introduced many organizational and doctrinal changes that helped shape the beliefs and practices of Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. .[9][10] He imposed a centralized administrative structure on the worldwide Bible Student movement, which he later called a theocracy, requiring all adherents to distribute literature via door to door preaching and to provide regular reports of their activity.[11][12] He also instituted training programs for public speaking as part of their weekly meetings for worship. He established Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.  as the date of Christ's invisible return, asserted that Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.  died on a tree rather than a cross,[13][14] formulated the current Witness concept of Armageddon as God's war on the wicked, and reinforced the belief that the start of Christ's millennial reign was imminent. He condemned the observance of traditional celebrations such as Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.  and birthdays, the saluting of national flags and the singing of national anthems. He introduced the name Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.  in 1931 and the term Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.  for houses of worship in 1935.[15]
      He wrote twenty-one books and was credited by the Society in 1942 with the distribution of almost 400 million books and booklets.[16] Despite significant decreases during the 1920s, overall membership increased more than sixfold by the end of Rutherford's 25 years as president.[17][18]

      Talks by JF Rutherford (in the wiki)
      Talks by JF Rutherford (on jw-archive.org)
      Religion is a Snare and a Racket - Phonograph recording - 1939
      Jehovah - Phonograph recording for the Ministry - 1933
      Rare video of JF Rutherford at Beth Sarim
      Early life
      Rutherford was born on November 8, 1869 to James Calvin Rutherford and Leonora Strickland and raised in near-poverty in a Baptist farm family. Some sources list his place of birth as Boonville, Missouri, but according to his death certificate he was born in Versailles, Missouri.[19][20] Rutherford developed an interest in law from the age of 16.[21] Although his father discouraged this interest, he allowed Rutherford to go to college under the condition that he pay for a laborer to take his place on the family farm. Rutherford took out a loan[22] and helped to pay for his law studies by working as a door-to-door encyclopedia salesman and court stenographer.[23]
       
      Law career
      Rutherford spent two years as a judge's intern, became an official court reporter at age 20, and was admitted to the Missouri bar in May 1892 at age 22.[23] He became a trial lawyer for a law firm[24] and later served for four years in Boonville as a public prosecutor. He campaigned briefly for Democratic presidential candidate William Jennings Bryan.[25] He was appointed as a Special Judge in the Eighth Judicial Circuit Court of Missouri,[23][26][27][28] sitting as a substitute judge at least once when a regular judge was unable to hold court.[22] As a result of this appointment he became known by the sobriquet "Judge" Rutherford. He was admitted to the New York bar in 1909 and admitted to practice before the Supreme Court of the United States the same year.[29]
      Rutherford filled in for a judge total of four (4) days. Some days he filled in there weren't even any cases.

      Cases involving Rutherford
      Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.
      Watch Tower Society
       
      In 1894 Rutherford purchased the first three volumes of Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. 's Millennial Dawn series of Bible study textbooks from two colporteurs who visited his office. Rutherford, who then viewed all religions as insincere, shallow and hypocritical, was struck by Russell's sincerity and his sentiments towards Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. , which mirrored his own view.[30][31] Rutherford immediately wrote to the Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.  to express appreciation for the books.[32] He was baptized twelve years later and he and his wife began holding Bible classes in their home.[25] In 1907, he became legal counsel for the Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.  at its Pittsburgh headquarters, and from around that time began to give public talks as a "pilgrim" representative of the Society.[24] As Russell's health deteriorated, Rutherford represented him on trips to Europe[33] and in April 1915 he was deputized to speak at a major debate with Baptist preacher J. H. Troy over four nights in Los Angeles before an audience of 12,000,[34] debating various subjects, including the state of the dead, hellfire and Christ's Second Coming.[35] Rutherford wrote a pamphlet, A Great Battle in the Ecclesiastical Heavens, in defense of Russell[36] and served as chairman of the Bible Students' Los Angeles convention in September 1916. 
      Around this time he produced his first work while Charles Taze Russell was still alive called "Militarism".
      Board of directors
      By 1916 Rutherford had become one of the seven directors of the Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. ; when Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.  died on October 31, 1916 he joined vice-President Alfred I. Ritchie and Secretary-Treasurer William E. Van Amburgh on a three-man executive committee that ran the Pennsylvania corporation until a new president was elected at the annual general meeting the following January.[37] He also joined a five-person editorial committee to run The Watch Tower from the December 15, 1916 issue. Russell's will, drawn up in 1907, had named the five people he wished to run the magazine after his death;[38] Rutherford appeared only on a second list of five alternative members to fill any vacancies that arose.[39]


      Bible Student Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. , who served as an aide to the executive committee, later wrote that tensions at the Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.  headquarters mounted as the day for election of the Society's officers approached. He wrote: "A few ambitious ones at headquarters were holding caucuses here and there, doing a little electioneering to get their men in. However, Van Amburgh and I held a large number of votes. Many shareholders, knowing of our long association with Russell, sent their proxies to us to be cast for the one whom we thought best fitted for office."[40] Macmillan, who claimed he had declined an offer from an ailing Russell months earlier to accept the position of president after his death,[41] agreed with Van Amburgh that Rutherford was the best candidate. According to Macmillan, "Rutherford did not know what was going on. He certainly didn't do any electioneering or canvassing for votes, but I guess he was doing some worrying, knowing if he was elected he would have a big job on his hands ... There is no doubt in our minds that the Lord's will was done in this choice. It is certain that Rutherford himself had nothing to do with it."[42]
      Presidency dispute
      Main article: Watch Tower Society presidency dispute (1917)
      On January 6, 1917, Rutherford, aged 47, was elected president of the Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. , unopposed, at the Pittsburgh convention. By-laws passed by both the Pittsburgh convention and the board of directors stated that the president would be the executive officer and general manager of the Society, giving him full charge of its affairs worldwide.[43]
      By June, four of the seven Watch Tower Society directors—Robert H. Hirsh, Alfred I. Ritchie, Isaac F. Hoskins and James D. Wright— had decided they had erred in endorsing Rutherford's expanded powers of management, claiming Rutherford had become autocratic.[44] In June, Hirsch attempted to rescind the new by-laws and reclaim the board's authority from the president.[45] Rutherford later claimed he had by then detected a conspiracy among the directors to seize control of the society.[46] In July, Rutherford gained a legal opinion from a Philadelphia corporation lawyer that none of his opposers were legally directors of the society. Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.  claimed the legal advice given to the ousted directors confirmed that given to Rutherford;[47] however, the pamphlets produced by the expelled board members at the time indicated that their legal advice, acquired from several attorneys, disagreed with Rutherford's.[48][49] On July 12, Rutherford filled what he claimed were four vacancies on the board, appointing Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.  and Pennsylvania Bible Students W. E. Spill, J. A. Bohnet and George H. Fisher as directors.[50] Between August and November the society and the four ousted directors published a series of pamphlets, with each side accusing the other of ambitious and reckless behavior. The former directors also claimed Rutherford had required all headquarters workers to sign a petition supporting him and threatened dismissal for any who refused to sign.[51] The former directors left the Brooklyn headquarters on August 8.[52] On January 5, 1918, shareholders returned Rutherford to office.
      The controversy fractured the Bible Student movement and some congregations split into opposing groups loyal either to Rutherford or those he had expelled.[52][53] By mid-1919 about one in seven Bible Students had chosen to leave rather than accept his leadership,[54] and over the following decade they helped formed other groups including the Standfast Movement, the Layman's Home Missionary Movement, the Dawn Bible Students Association, the Pastoral Bible Institute, the Elijah Voice Movement, the Concordat Publishing Concern, and the Eagle Society.[55]
       
      Reorganization
      Administrative changes
      Following his release from prison, Rutherford began a major reorganization of Bible Student activities. At a May, 1919 convention in Ohio he announced the publication of a new magazine, The Golden Age (later renamed Awake!). Because Russell's will had decreed the Society should publish no other periodicals[73] the new magazine was at first published by "Woodworth, Hudgings & Martin", with a Manhattan (rather than Brooklyn) address.[74] Within months Bible Students were organized to distribute it door-to-door.[73] He expanded the Society's printing facilities, revived the colporteur work and in 1920 introduced the requirement for weekly reports of Bible Students' preaching activity.[75][76] He expanded and reorganized overseas branch offices[77] in what he regarded as a "cleansing" and "sifting" work.[78]

      Beginning with an eight-day convention at Cedar Point, Ohio, in September 1922 Rutherford, launched a series of major international conventions under the theme "Advertise the King and Kingdom", attracting crowds of up to 20,000.[79] Audiences were urged to "herald the message far and wide".[80] He stressed that the primary duty of all Bible Students was to become "publicity agents" in fulfillment of Matthew 24:14, especially in the form of door-to-door evangelism with the Society's publications.[81][82] In 1928 Rutherford began to teach that the Cedar Point convention and the events resulting from it fulfilled the prophecy of the 1290 days at Daniel 12:11.[83][84]
      In 1920, Rutherford published a booklet, Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. , and a year later published his first hardcover book, Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. . This was followed by a further nineteen hardcover books, each with one-word titles, such as Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. , Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.  and Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. . His publications reached a total printing of 36 million copies.[85] In 1925 he gained full control over what doctrines would be taught in Watch Tower Society publications, overruling the refusal by the five-man Editorial Committee to publish his article, "Birth of the Nation",[86] which contained significant doctrinal changes.[87] Rutherford later claimed Satan had "tried to prevent the publication of that article ... but failed in that effort";[88] In 1927 the Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.  ceased printing of Russell's Studies in the Scriptures.[89] The Editorial Committee was dissolved in 1931, after which Rutherford wrote every leading article in The Watch Tower until his death.[90] The 1933 Watch Tower Society Yearbook observed that the demise of the Editorial Committee indicated "that the Lord himself is running his organization".[91]
      Rutherford expanded his means of spreading the Watch Tower message in 1924 with the start of 15-minute radio broadcasts, initially from WBBR, based on Staten Island, and eventually via a network of as many as 480 radio stations.[92] A 1931 talk was broadcast throughout North America, Australia and France, but his attacks on the clergy resulted in both the NBCand BBC radio networks banning his broadcasts.[93]
      In 1928 Rutherford began to abolish the system of electing elders by congregational voting, dismissing them as "haughty" and "lazy", and finally asserting in 1932 that electing elders was unscriptural.[94][95] He impressed on elders the need to obey the Society's "regulations", "instructions" and "directions" without complaint.[96] Service directors, who reported back to Brooklyn, were appointed in each congregation and a weekly "service meeting" introduced to meeting programs.[97] In 1933 Rutherford claimed that abolishing elective elders was a fulfillment of the prophecy of 2300 days at Daniel 8:13–14, and that God's sanctuary (Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. ) was thereby cleansed.[98]
      At a 1931 Bible Student assembly in Columbus, Ohio Rutherford proposed a new name for the organization, Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. , to differentiate them from the proliferation of other groups that followed Russell's teachings.[92] Bible Students who opposed or abandoned Rutherford to form new groups were increasingly described as the "evil servant class" by The Watchtower, which said it was wrong to pray for those who were "unfaithful".[99][100] Four years later the term "Kingdom Hall" was introduced for the local meeting place of congregations.[101]
      In 1937, the door-to-door preaching program was extended to formally include "back calls" on interested people and Witnesses were urged to start one-hour Bible studies in the homes of householders.[102][103] In the late 1930s, he advocated the use of "sound cars" and portable phonographs with which talks by Rutherford were played to passersby and householders.[102]
      In 1938 he introduced the term "theocracy" to describe the religion's system of government, with Consolation explaining: "The Theocracy is at present administered by the Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. , of which Judge Rutherford is the president and general manager."[104] "Zone servants" (now known as circuit overseers) were appointed to supervise congregations. In a Watchtower article Rutherford declared the need for congregations to "get in line" with the changed structure.[105][106]
      By 1942, the year of his death, worldwide attendance at the annual Memorial of Christ's death was 140,450 though his restructuring of the Bible Student community coincided with a dramatic loss of followers during the 1920s and 1930s. Worldwide attendance of the annual Memorial of Christ's death fell from 90,434 in 1925[107] to 17,380 in 1928.[108] Memorial attendance figures did not surpass 90,000 again until Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. .[108]Author Tony Wills, who analyzed attendance and "field worker" statistics, suggests it was the "more dedicated" Bible Students who quit through the 1920s, to be replaced by newcomers in larger numbers, although Rutherford dismissed the loss of the original Bible Students as the Lord "shaking out" the unfaithful.[109][110] In the 1942 Yearbook of Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. , Rutherford wrote that the year's achievements "would, on the face of it, show that the Theocratic witness work on earth is about done".[111][112]
       
      Character and attitudes
      Biographers describe Rutherford as tall and solidly built with a senatorial demeanor,[163] and a strong booming voice that helped make him a powerful orator.[164][165] In 1917, The New York Times stated that Rutherford "has a reputation asan eloquent, forceful speaker".[26] Watch Tower Society literature states that his personality contrasted strongly with that of his predecessor. One Witness history book says that while Russell was kind, warm and tactful, Rutherford "was warm and generous toward his associates but he was also a brusque and direct type of person, and his legal background and experiences in early life gave him a directness in his approach to problems in dealing with his brothers that caused some to take offense."[166] Another Watch Tower Society account says he did not hide his feelings, adding, "His bluntness, even when spoken in kindness, was sometimes misunderstood."[167] Fellow Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.  director Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.  says Rutherford "spoke as simply and directly to the people as he knew how, and he was an extremely forthright man. He was thoroughly convinced that what he had to say was the truth and that it was a matter of life and death."[168] Macmillan added, "He would never tolerate anything that would be contrary to what he clearly understood the Bible to teach. He was so strict about that, he would permit nothing that would seem to show a compromise when it came to an issue of the truth."[169] Author Tony Wills describes him as charitable and generous, and says his sympathy for the poor and oppressed was exceeded only by his hatred for the rich, the oppressors.[165] He also notes that he was a dynamic, impatient extrovert.[170] Other authors also address Rutherford's abrasiveness: James Penton describes him as blunt and moody with an explosive temper,[171] with "a streak of self-righteousness which caused him to regard anyone who opposed him as of the Devil",[172] while Alan Rogerson notes that he was a "dogmatic and insensitive person, obsessed with his own self-importance."[173]
      Rutherford's confrontation with four Watch Tower Society directors who opposed him in 1917 highlighted both the forcefulness of his personality and his determination to fight for what he believed was right. Penton claims Rutherford played "hard-fisted church politics"[174] and Rogerson accuses Rutherford of using The Watchtower as a propaganda medium to attack his opposers in what was effectively a battle for his position as president.[6] At the heart of his opponents' complaints was his "autocratic" behavior as he strove to "exercise complete management of the Society and its affairs."[175] Penton similarly describes Rutherford's actions in his first year of presidency—including his appointment of new directors, refusal to allow the Society's accounts to be examined, and his unilateral decision to publish The Finished Mystery—as high-handed and secretive.[176] In contrast, Rutherford claimed, "It was my duty to use the power the Lord had put into my hands to support the interests of the shareholders and all others interested in the Truth throughout the world ... to be unfaithful to them would be unfaithful to the Lord."[177] Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. , who supported Rutherford throughout the crisis, claimed the president was extremely patient and "did everything that he could to help his opposers see their mistake, holding a number of meetings with them, trying to reason with them and show them how contrary their course was to the Society's charter".[169]

      Rutherford with Cadillac V-16 from the Watchtower publication The Messenger (1931)
      According to Wills, Rutherford emerged from prison in 1919 bitter against the world and the collusion he saw between the clergy and military that had secured his imprisonment. Soon after his release he coined the term "Satan's organization" to refer to this supposed conspiracy.[178] In Watchtower articles Rutherford was similarly scathing towards big business, politics and the League of Nations.[179] Rogerson describes Rutherford's attitude towards the clergy—his avowed enemies—as "unadulterated hatred".[72] His attacks on clergymen, particularly those of the Catholic Church, from the late 1920s were strong enough to attract a ban on his broadcasts by the NBC radio network, which condemned his "rabid attack upon organized religion and the clergy".[180] He also applied criticizing terms to those who had deserted Watch Tower ranks, calling them the "evil servant".[181] He urged readers to view with contempt anyone who had "openly rebelled against God's order or commandments"[182] and also described elective elders of the 1930s who refused to submit to Watch Tower Society administrative changes as "despicable".[183]
      Wills states that Rutherford seemed to relish his descriptions of how completely the wicked would be destroyed at Armageddon, dwelling at great length on prophecies of destruction. He claims that towards the close of his ministry Rutherford spent about half of each year's Watchtowers writing about Armageddon.[184]
      According to Penton, Rutherford's austerity—evidenced by his distaste for Christmas, birthday parties and other popular customs[185] that were described as of pagan origin or that encouraged creature worshipand were not to be observed[186]—led in turn to austerity becoming a part of Witness life. In 1938, he directed that singing be dispensed with at congregation meetings;[187][188][189][190] singing was reinstated soon after his death.[191]
      Rutherford's books and magazine articles reveal his strong views on "the proper place of women" in the church and society. In a 1931 book he linked the post-1919 rise of women's movements that encouraged equality of the sexes with satanic influence,[192] and claimed the custom of mentipping their hats to women or standing when a woman approached was a scheme of the devil to turn men from God and indicated an effeminate streak in men who practiced the custom.[187] Mother's Day was similarly described as part of a plan to turn people away from God.[193] In 1938 he urged adherents to delay marriage and child-bearing until after Armageddon,[194] which Wills claims prompted a strong community bias among Witnesses against marriage. Those who did marry, says Wills, were considered to be weak in faith.[195] At a 1941 convention in Missouri he quoted Rudyard Kipling's description of women as "a rag and a bone and a hank of hair".[187][196]

      A 1940 Rutherford booklet "exposing" a Catholic campaign of mob violence against Jehovah's Witnesses
      According to Wills, Rutherford emerged from prison in 1919 bitter against the world and the collusion he saw between the clergy and military that had secured his imprisonment. Soon after his release he coined the term "Satan's organization" to refer to this supposed conspiracy.[178] In Watchtower articles Rutherford was similarly scathing towards big business, politics and the League of Nations.[179] Rogerson describes Rutherford's attitude towards the clergy—his avowed enemies—as "unadulterated hatred".[72] His attacks on clergymen, particularly those of the Catholic Church, from the late 1920s were strong enough to attract a ban on his broadcasts by the NBC radio network, which condemned his "rabid attack upon organized religion and the clergy".[180] He also applied criticizing terms to those who had deserted Watch Tower ranks, calling them the "evil servant".[181] He urged readers to view with contempt anyone who had "openly rebelled against God's order or commandments"[182] and also described elective elders of the 1930s who refused to submit to Watch Tower Society administrative changes as "despicable".[183]
      Wills states that Rutherford seemed to relish his descriptions of how completely the wicked would be destroyed at Armageddon, dwelling at great length on prophecies of destruction. He claims that towards the close of his ministry Rutherford spent about half of each year's Watchtowers writing about Armageddon.[184]
      According to Penton, Rutherford's austerity—evidenced by his distaste for Christmas, birthday parties and other popular customs[185] that were described as of pagan origin or that encouraged creature worshipand were not to be observed[186]—led in turn to austerity becoming a part of Witness life. In 1938, he directed that singing be dispensed with at congregation meetings;[187][188][189][190] singing was reinstated soon after his death.[191]
      Rutherford's books and magazine articles reveal his strong views on "the proper place of women" in the church and society. In a 1931 book he linked the post-1919 rise of women's movements that encouraged equality of the sexes with satanic influence,[192] and claimed the custom of mentipping their hats to women or standing when a woman approached was a scheme of the devil to turn men from God and indicated an effeminate streak in men who practiced the custom.[187] Mother's Day was similarly described as part of a plan to turn people away from God.[193] In 1938 he urged adherents to delay marriage and child-bearing until after Armageddon,[194] which Wills claims prompted a strong community bias among Witnesses against marriage. Those who did marry, says Wills, were considered to be weak in faith.[195] At a 1941 convention in Missouri he quoted Rudyard Kipling's description of women as "a rag and a bone and a hank of hair".[187][196]
      Former Jehovah's Witness and former Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.  member Raymond Franz claimed there was no evidence Rutherford engaged in door-to-door ministry despite his assertion that it was a requirement and sacred duty of all Witnesses. Franz claimed to have heard Rutherford's associates say his responsibilities as president "do not permit his engaging in this activity".[197] Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. , however, related details of Rutherford's home preaching in 1905 or 1906 when he was baptized,[198] and a 1975 article quoted several Witnesses relating their experiences with Rutherford in the house-to-house ministry in the 1920s.[199] The official history of Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.  also notes, "Rutherford personally shared with other conventioners as they engaged in the work of Kingdom proclamation from house to house."[200] On August 2, 1928 in a meeting with the Bible Student elders who had attended a general convention in Detroit, Michigan Rutherford listed his responsibilities and concluded "when I have attended to many other details, I have not had very much time to go from door to door."[201]
      Authors William Whalen and James Penton have claimed that Rutherford was to Russell what Brigham Young was to Mormon prophet Joseph Smith. Penton contends that both Russell and Smith were capable religious leaders but naive visionaries, while Rutherford and Young were "hard-bitten pragmatists who gave a degree of permanency to the movements they dominated".[202]


      1991_List_Watch_Tower_publications_written_by_Rutherford.pdf
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      References
      Leo P. Chall, Sociological Abstracts, vol 26 issues 1–3, "Sociology of Religion", 1978, p. 193 col 2: "Rutherford, through the Watch Tower Society, succeeded in changing all aspects of the sect from 1919 to 1932 and created Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. —a charismatic offshoot of the Bible student community." "The Embryonic State of a Religious Sect's Development: The Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. " Sociological Yearbook of Religion in Britain, ed. Michael Hill, 1972, issue 5 pp 11–12: "Joseph Franklin Rutherford succeeded to Russell's position as President of Zion's Watch Tower Tract Society, but only at the expense of antagonizing a large proportion of the Watch Towers subscribers. Nevertheless, he persisted in moulding the Society to suit his own programme of activist evangelism under systematic central control, and he succeeded in creating the administrative structure of the present-day sect of Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. ." The Twentieth century, vol 153, 1953 p. 14: "This latter phenomenon, perhaps the most widely spread politico-religious movement at the present time, is linked, as are so many, with a source in America, in this case Judge Rutherford, the New York founder of Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. ." P.S.L. Johnson, The Present Truth and Herald of Christ's Epiphany, April 1927, p. 66: "Since the Fall of 1923 ... from 20,000 to 30,000 Truth people the world over have left the Society." Penton 1997, p. 50 Rogerson 1969, p. 37 "Postwar Enlargement of the Theocratic Organization", The Watchtower, July 15, 1950, p. 217 Beckford 1975, p. 24 Penton 1997, p. 75 Rogerson 1969, p. 64 "Testing and Sifting in Modern Times", The Watchtower, June 15, 1987, p. 17 Rogerson 1969, p. 53 Riches, by J.F. Rutherford, Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society, 1936, p. 27, "Jesus was crucified, not on a cross... Jesus was crucified by nailing his body to a tree. ...(Deuteronomy 21:22,23) ... (Galatians 3:13) ... Acts 5:30." "Flashes of Light—Great and Small", The Watchtower, May 15, 1995, p. 20. Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society 1993, p. 319 Consolation, May 27, 1942, p. 6. It is not clear from this publication whether this included the distribution of Russell's earlier writings. "Part 1—United States of America", 1975 Yearbook of Jehovah's Witnesses, p. 94, "...earthwide report shows that the Memorial of Jesus Christ’s death on April 5, 1917, was attended by 21,274. Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. , pp. 312–313: Memorial attendance figures in Rutherford's final years were 98,076 (1941) and 140,450 (1942) Penton 1997, p. 47. Dept. of Public Health, San Diego California, Joseph Franklin Rutherford, Certificate of Death issued February 6, 1942 Rogerson 1969, p. 34. Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society 1975, p. 81 Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society 1993, p. 67 "Modern History of Jehovah’s Witnesses", Watchtower, March 15, 1955, p. 175. Barbara Grizzuti Harrison, Visions of Glory – A History and Memory of Jehovah's Witnesses, Simon & Schuster, 1978, chapter 6. The New York Times, January 17, 1919, Section I, p. 9, Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. "Religion: Jehovah's Witness", Time magazine, June 10, 1935,Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. Biographies of Rutherford in the March 15, 1955 Watchtowerand 1975 Yearbook of Jehovah's Witnesses state that his appointment as Special Judge was in the Fourteenth Judicial Circuit. Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society 1975, p. 83 Wills 2007, p. 131 Wills (p. 131) claims Rutherford had never doubted God's existence, but Wills does not cite a source for that claim. The Watchtower (October 1, 1997, p. 6) cites a 1913 newspaper interview wherein Rutherford describes becoming an atheist after a Baptist minister claimed Rutherford's wife Mary would go to Hell because she had not been baptized. Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society 1993, p. 67 "British Branch report", Watch Tower, January 15, 1915, p. 26, Reprints 5616. Rogerson 1969, p. 30 Yearbook, Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society, 1991, p. 73. Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society 1993, p. 647 Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. Penton 1997, p. 48 Macmillan 1957, p. 68 Macmillan 1957, p. 70 Macmillan 1957, p. 71 Pierson et al 1917, pp. 5,6 Pierson et al 1917, p. 4 Rutherford August 1917, p. 12 Rutherford August 1917, pp. 22–23 Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.  (1959) p. 71, col. 2 Light After Darkness (September 1, 1917) p. 11 Facts for Shareholders (November 15, 1917) p. 14 Rutherford August 1917, pp. 14,15 Pierson et al 1917, p. 9 Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society 1993, p. 68 Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.  (1993) identifies opposing sides as "those loyal to the Society and those who were easy prey to the smooth talk of the opposers" (p. 68). Yearbook of Jehovah's Witnesses (1975) dismisses the four ousted directors as "rebellious individuals who claimed to be board members" (p. 87) and men who "ambitiously sought to gain administrative control of the Society" (p. 92). Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society 1975, pp. 93–94 Rogerson 1969, p. 39 Wills 2007, p. 97 Pierson et al 1917, p. 11 Jehovah's Witnesses in the Divine Purpose. Watchtower. 1959. Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. , p. viii: "After his death and after we were in the war they issued a seventh volume of this series, entitled "The Finished Mystery," which, under the guise of being a posthumous work of Pastor Russell, included an attack on the war and an attack on patriotism, which were not written by Pastor Russell and could not have possibly been written by him." Crompton, Robert. Counting the Days to Armageddon. Cambridge: James Clarke & Co. 1996. pp 84–85: "One of Rutherford's first actions as president ... was, without reference either to his fellow directors or to the editorial committee which Russell had nominated in his will, to commission a seventh volume of Studies in the Scriptures. Responsibility for preparing this volume was given to two of Russell's close associates, George H. Fisher and Clayton J. Woodworth. On the face of it, their brief was to edit for publication the notes left by Russell ... and to draw upon his published writings ... It is obvious ... that it was not in any straightforward sense the result of editing Russell's papers, rather it was in large measure the original work of Woodworth and Fisher at the behest of the new president." Rogerson 1969, p. 40 Watch Tower, October 1, 1917, January 1, 1918. Wills 2007, p. 100 Rogerson 1969, p. 41 Macmillan 1957, p. 85 The initial delivery was entitled "The World Has Ended—Millions Now Living May Never Die". See:
      "Noteworthy Events in the Modern-day History of Jehovah’s Witnesses", Jehovah's Witnesses – Proclaimers of God's Kingdom", 1993 Watch Tower, p. 719, "1918 The discourse “The World Has Ended—Millions Now Living May Never Die” is first delivered, on February 24, in Los Angeles, California. On March 31, in Boston, Massachusetts, the talk is entitled “The World Has Ended—Millions Now Living Will Never Die” [emphasis added] Los Angeles Morning Tribune, February 25, 1918, as recorded in Faith on the March by A. H. Macmillan, 1957, p. 86 Macmillan 1957, p. 89 Rogerson 1969, p. 41 Macmillan 1957, p. 106 Macmillan 1957, pp. 105,106 Rogerson 1969, p. 44 Penton 1997, p. 56 The Golden Age, volume 1, number 1, October 1, 1919, cover,Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. Rogerson 1969, pp. 53,54 "Annual report for 1920", The Watchtower, December 15, 1920, "At the beginning of the fiscal year there were only 225 active colporteurs in the field. The number has now increased to 350, all of whom are devoting their entire time to the service ... In addition to the colporteurs there are reported to this office 8,052 class workers." Penton 1997, p. 57 Rogerson 1969, pp. 52,53 Rogerson 1969, p. 54 Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society 1975, p. 131 Penton 1997, p. 60 Watchtower March 1, 1925 p. 72 col 2 Watchtower December 15, 1929 pp 371–77: "Briefly, then, these prophecies and the dates of their fulfilment [sic] are as follows, to wit: The fixed "time of the end" is Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. . The 1260-day period ended in April, 1918. The 1290-day period ended September, 1922. The 1335-day period of blessedness began May, 1926, and goes on for ever." The Harp of God, 1928 edition Penton 1997, p. 58 Watchtower, March 1, 1925 pp 67–74. In the content list on the cover the article is entitled Birth of a Nation, but the article itself on page 67 is entitled Birth of the Nation Penton 1997, p. 59 Watchtower, July 1, 1938, p. 201. WTB&TS, "God's Kingdom of a Thousand Years Has Approached" (1973) p. 347 Wills 2006, p. 121 Yearbook, Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society, 1933, p. 11. Rogerson 1969, p. 55 Wills, pp. 149–151 Penton, p. 64 Wills 2006, pp. 177–179 Wills 2006, p. 176 Wills 2006, p. 175 Watchtower July 15, 1933 pp. 214-15: "Beginning to count from the transgression resulting by reason of the League of Nations, and the giving of notice, which must begin May 25, 1926, the twenty-three hundred days, or six years, four months, and twenty days, would end October 15, 1932...What, then, took place at the end of the twenty-three-hundred-day period? The Watchtower, issues of August 15 and September 1, 1932, brought before God's people the Scriptural proof that the office of "elective elder", chosen or selected by vote of creatures, does not Scripturally exist, and that therefore the selection of elders by such means should end." In 1971 the Watchtower Society changed the interpretation ending the 2300 days in 1944 rather than 1932. Wills 2006, pp. 167–172 Watchtower, February 15, 1933. Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.  chap. 20 p. 319, 721 Rogerson 1969, p. 57 "Testing and Sifting in Modern Times", The Watchtower, June 15, 1987, p. 18. Consolation, September 4, 1940, p. 25, as cited by Penton, p. 61. Wills 2006, p. 201 Watchtower, June 15, 1938. Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society 1959, p. 110 Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society 1959, pp. 312–313 Wills 2007, pp. 142, 146, 157–159 1931 Yearbook, Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society, p. 57. Wills 2007, p. 223 Yearbook, 1942, Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society, p. 29. The Finished Mystery, 1917, p. 2: "POSTHUMOUS WORK OF PASTOR RUSSELL His Last Legacy to the Dear Israel of God (Matt. 20:9)" The Bible Students Monthly, December 1917, vol. 9 no. 9, p. 1: "The following article is extracted mainly from Pastor Russell's posthumous volume entitled "THE FINISHED MYSTERY," the 7th in the series of his STUDIES IN THE SCRIPTURES and published subsequent to his death... In this posthumous volume, which is called his "last legacy to the Christians of earth" is found a thorough exposition of every verse in the entire Book of Revelation." Tony Mills, A People for His Name, 2007, pp 97–8: "While he keeps faithfully to Russell's comments in most cases, there are a few times when he goes beyond Russell's plainly stated interpretation. In some of the chapters of Revelation on which Russell left no comments his imagination wandered free. He ridicules John Wesley, whom Russell admired, and his Methodist movement. He calls Europeans "the most cruel, bloodthirsty, quarrelsome, rapacious people on earth," a thought Russell denied. He ridicules Calvinists by saying that they have "lost their manhood, reason and common sense." He ridicules politics, patriotism, religion and almost everything the world holds holy, without (as Russell was careful to do) presenting the good along with the bad." Bible Students Tract Society, Notes and Comments on the Finished Mystery, Feb. 1919, pp 6–7: "Thus we have Bro. Woodworth's distinct statement that none of these interpretations of Revelation are Pastor Russell's, but another's [sic] (presumably his own)... Have Pastor Russell's interpretations been followed? To this we reply that in many cases they have not. On the contrary, entirely contradictory ones are frequently given." The Time is at Hand, 1889, p. 183: "Reckoned from the beginning of the seventy years desolation under Babylon, the great cycle [50x50] ends with the year A.D. 1875." Millions Now Living Will Never Die!, 1920, p.88 : "A simple calculation of these jubilees brings us to this important fact: Seventy jubilees of fifty years each would be a total of 3500 years. That period of time beginning 1575 before A.D. 1 of necessity would end in the fall of the year 1925." The Watch Tower April 15, 1916 p. 127: "We cannot help it that many of the dear friends continue to tell what THE WATCH TOWER believes, and to misrepresent its teachings. Our kindest thought must be that they are not giving much heed to its teachings. Otherwise they would know from its columns that we are not looking forward to 1925, nor to any other date. As expressly stated in THE WATCH TOWER, we are simply going on, our last date or appointment having been passed more than a year ago...we have no different time in mind from the Scriptures on the subject and do not expect to have any." Tabernacle Shadows of the Better Sacrifices, 1920, Appendix of Notes pp 133–155: "Thirty-nine years have passed since the publication of this little booklet; and during that time some of the teachings herein contained have come to be seen in clearer light – even as the details of a mountain become more discernible the closer one draws to it. In harmony with these clearer understandings we suggest the following alterations in appendix form, leaving the text intact out of deference to the honored and beloved writer of the booklet." Watchtower, December 15, 1922, p. 394. Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. Watchtower June 1, 1927 p. 166. Light by J. F. Rutherford, Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society, 1930, p 226. The Golden Age May 7, 1930 p. 503 The Golden Age March 14, 1934 p 380 "Prior to Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.  and years thereafter we thought that our Lord's return dated from 1874; and we took it for granted that the parousia or presence of our Lord dated from that time. An examination of the scriptures containing the word parousia shows that the presence of the Lord could not date prior to Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. ." Wills 2007, pp. 154,155 Rogerson 1969, p. 47 "Can This World’s Armageddon Be Avoided?", Watchtower, December 1, 1966, p. 730. Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society 1993, p. 124 Wills 2007, pp. 181, 182 Penton 1997, p. 69 J.F. Rutherford, Prophecy, Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society, 1929, pp. 319, 328–333 J.F. Rutherford, Vindication, Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society, 1931, pp. 9–14, 65–68, 135. Wills 2007, p. 143 "Character or Covenant – Which?", The Watchtower, May 1, 1926 Watchtower, January 1, 1927, p. 7. Watchtower July 15, 1933 p. 214 col 2 The Golden Age, December 14, 1927, "The Origin of Christmas", pp 178–79 1975 Yearbook of Jehovah's Witnesses, 1974, p. 147 Vindication book 1, 1931, pp 158–60: "On the face of it the arrangement of "Mother's Day" seems harmless and calculated to do good. But the people are in ignorance of Satan's subtle hand in the matter, and that he is back of the movement, to turn the people away from God... Neither the man nor the woman should be worshiped for doing right, because such doing of right is their duty. Creature worship of any kind is wrong and an abomination in the sight of God." George Chryssides, Historical Dictionary of Jehovah's Witnesses, 2008, p. 21 Jehovah's Witnesses: Proclaimers of God's Kingdom, 1993, p. 199 Wills 2007, p. 38 J. F. Rutherford, Favored People, Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society, as cited by Wills, 2007, p. 129. Rogerson 1969, p. 46 Thy Kingdom Come The Messenger, August 5, 1928 p. 1: "When the Lord spoke of hiding his people in his secret place he was not talking about any chambers in the pyramid, built by the Devil himself." The Watch Tower, November 15, 1928 Great Pyramid Passages, 1924, reprint by Portland Area Bible Students, 1988, pp i–xxxviii The Messenger, August 5, 1928 p. 2: "It sure did set the tongues wagging at the Fair Grounds and resulted in another overhauling of the old trunk wherein are kept a few choice relics of what, until recently, we honestly believed the Bible teaches." Light book 1 and 2, 1930 Light book 1, 1930, p. 106 Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. , 1917 Gruss, p. 172 The Watch Tower, Nov 15, 1916, p. 343 Penton 1997, p. 72 Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society 1959, p. 140 Yearbook, 1936, p. 22, "The saluting of or salutation to a flag means this: 'I depend on what the flag represents for my salvation. Those who know and serve God in spirit and in truth look to Jehovah God for salvation, and not to any man or any man-made organization. It therefore follows that the saluting of any flag by those who are in covenant with Jehovah God to do his will constitutes the breaking of that covenant with God, and such covenant breakers are guilty of death." Wills 2007, pp. 214–224 American Bar Association's Bill of Rights Review, Vol 2, No.4, Summer 1942, p. 262. Riches, 1936, p. 27: "Jesus was crucified, not on a cross of wood, such as is exhibited in many images and pictures, and which images are made and exhibited by men; Jesus was crucified by nailing his body to a tree." Herbert H. Stroup, The Jehovah's Witnesses, Columbia University Press, 1945, p. 16. Penton 1997, p. 47 Wills 2007, p. 131 Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society 1959, pp. 68, 69 Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society 1975, p. 83 Macmillan 1957, pp. 150,151 Macmillan 1957, p. 77 Wills 2007, p. 107 P.S.L. Johnson's Harvest Siftings Reviewed (1917, p.17) relates an incident in which an enraged Rutherford rushed at him in a confrontation in Brooklyn Bethel, grabbed at his arm and "almost jerked me off my feet". Johnson complains that in an earlier hearing of complaints against him, Rutherford treated him to "sneers, sarcasm and ridicule. His face expressed more contempt than that of any other face upon which I have ever looked."(p.14) Penton 1997, pp. 47–48 Rogerson 1969, p. 35 Penton 1997, p. 51 Pierson et al 1917, pp. 3,4 Penton 1997, pp. 51, 53 Rutherford August 1917, p. 17 Wills 2007, p. 132 Wills 2007, pp. 131–138 Yearbook, 1930, p. 38 The term was drawn from the account of the Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.  and "evil servant" of Matthew 24:45–51. Watchtower, February 15, 1933, p. 55. Watchtower, March 15, 1938, p.87 Wills 2007, p. 154 J.F.Rutherford, Vindication, Vol I, pp. 188, 189, as cited by Wills, p. 139. Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society 1975, p. 147 Penton 1997, p. 66 Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society 1959, p. 215 Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society 1993, p. 241, "singing in local congregations was largely dispensed with in about 1938" The Watchtower, May 1, 1938, p 139, "At all study meetings...the one presiding at the study might well, as a prelude to the meeting, briefly state God’s purpose which is now being performed... two minutes might well be devoted to such at the beginning of all meetings for study [by] the one presiding... A few words like the above pronounced at the beginning of the study would be far more beneficial than to occupy the same time in singing songs, which often express much that is out of harmony with the truth" "Music’s Place in Modern Worship", The Watchtower, February 1, 1997, pp 26–27, "In 1938 singing at congregation meetings was largely dispensed with. However, the wisdom of following apostolic example and direction soon prevailed. At the 1944 district convention, F. W. Franz...announced the release of theKingdom Service Song Book for use at the weekly service meetings." J.F.Rutherford, Vindication, Vol I, pp. 155–159, as cited by Wills, p. 139. J.F.Rutherford, Vindication, Vol I, pp. 155–157, as cited by Wills, p. 139. Watchtower, November 15, 1938, p. 346. Wills 2007, p. 138 Barbara Grizzuti Harrison, Visions of Glory – A History and Memory of Jehovah's Witnesses, Simon & Schuster, 1978, chapter 3. Raymond Franz, In Search of Christian Freedom, Commentary Press, 2007, pp. 191–192 "Part 1—United States of America", 1975 Yearbook of Jehovah's Witnesses, 1975 Watch Tower, p 83 "Part 2—United States of America", 1975 Yearbook of Jehovah's Witnesses, 1975 Watch Tower, p 133 "Conventions Proof of Our Brotherhood", Jehovah's Witnesses – Proclaimers of God's Kingdom, 1993 Watch Tower, p 260 The Messenger, August 3, 1928 p. 5: "Frequently some elder says: "The president of the Society does not go from house to house selling books. Why should I?" ... When I have looked after the management of the work at headquarters with its many departments; when I have given attention to a voluminous mail; when I have managed thirty odd branch offices in different parts of the earth and kept in close touch with them by correspondence and examination of their reports, and given advice and counsel as to what shall be done; when I have given attention to may [sic] legal matters that have arisen against members of the Society by reason of the opposition of the enemy; when I have given counsel to the various parts of the radio work; when I have prepared copy for The Watch Tower and other publications; and occasionally written a book or booklet and followed its progress through the manufacturing thereof; and when I have attended to many other details, I have not had very much time to go from door to door." Prof. William J. Whalen, Armageddon Around the Corner: A report on Jehovah's Witnesses, John Day, New York, 1962, as cited by Penton, pp. 75–76. St. Paul Enterprise January 16, 1917 p. 1 "Advertise the King and the Kingdom! (1919–1941)",Jehovah's Witnesses – Proclaimers of God's Kingdom, 1993 Watch Tower, p 89 "Advertise the King and the Kingdom! (1919–1941)", Jehovah's Witnesses – Proclaimers of God's Kingdom, 1993 Watch Tower, p 75 Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. , The Messenger(Watchtower): 6, 8, July 25, 1931. (17MB) 1975 Yearbook of Jehovah's Witnesses, 1974 Watch Tower, p 194, "In time, a direct contribution was made for the purpose of constructing a house in San Diego for Brother Rutherford’s use." New York Times Deeds San Diego Home To Kings of Israel; Judge Rutherford in the Interim Occupies the House and Drives the Cars March 19, 1930 p. 31 Watchtower, December 15, 1947, as cited by Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. , 1993, p. 76. Penton 1997, pp. 72,73 The Watchtower, May 15. 1937, p 159 Jehovah's Witnesses and the Third Reich by M. James Penton, University of Toronto Press, 2004, p 368; though Salter's letter was dated "April 1, 1937", Penton writes, "Salter had broken with the Watch Tower Society and had been excommunicated from the Witness community at the time he wrote the letter." Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. , "I, at your orders would purchase cases of whiskey at $60.00 a case, and cases of brandy and other liquors, to say nothing of untold cases of beer. A bottle or two of liquor would not do... [Rutherford] sends us out from door to door to face the enemy while he goes from 'drink to drink,' and tells us if we don't we are going to be destroyed." Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. Tony Wills (2007), Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. , Lulu.com, pp. 202–204, ISBN 978-1-4303-0100-4 Society directors defended Rutherford in an October 1939 Watchtower article, accusing Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.  of lies and "wicked slander" and claimed he was a "Judas" trying to cause division. Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.  successfully sued the board of directors for libel, collecting $15,000 plus court costs. See Penton, pp. 80–83 and Wills, pp. 202–205. Penton 1997, pp. 72,73: "Although Jehovah's Witnesses have done everything possible to hide accounts of the judge's drinking habits, they are simply too notorious to be denied. Former workers at the Watch Tower's New York headquarters recount tales of his inebriation and drunken stupors. Others tell stories of how difficult it sometimes was to get him to the podium to give talks at conventions because of his drunkenness. In San Diego, California, where he spent his winters from 1930 until his death, an elderly lady still speaks of how she sold him great quantities of liquor when he came to purchase medicines in her husband's drugstore." Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society 1993, p. 89 Rogerson, Alan (1969). Millions Now Living Will Never Die: A Study of Jehovah's Witnesses. Constable & Co, London. pp. 64.ISBN 094559406. Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. , p. 90 Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. , The Evening Independent (St Petersburg, Florida): 18, January 26, 1942 Consolation, May 27, 1942. Consolation, May 27, 1942 Penton 1997, p. 74 "San Diego officials line up against New Earth's princes",Consolation, May 27, 1942, pp. 6,9 "No Will Left By Rutherford, Says Secretary", San Diego Union, February 18, 1942 Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. Leonard & Marjorie Chretien (1988), Witnesses of Jehovah, Harvest House, pp. 49, ISBN 0-89081-587-9 Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. , June 28, 2008 Mallios et al. (2007), Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. , Arcadia Publishing, pp. 112, ISBN 978-0-7385-4714-5 Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. , Time, May 4, 1942 "Announcements", The Watchtower, October 1, 1966, p 608 "San Diego's Officials Line Up Against Earth's New Princes",Consolation (Watchtower): 9, 14–16, May 27, 1942 Van Amburgh, W. E. (2005), Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. , An enlarged replica of the International Bible Students Association's original 1924 book, Lulu.com, pp. 45, 46, ISBN 1-4116-5971-6, retrieved July 12, 2009 Bibliography
      Beckford, James A. (1975). The Trumpet of Prophecy: A Sociological Study of Jehovah's Witnesses. Oxford: Basil Blackwell. ISBN 0-631-16310-7. Johnson, Paul S.L. (November 1, 1917), Harvest Siftings Reviewed, retrieved July 21, 2009 Macmillan, A.H. (1957), Faith on the March, Prentice-Hall Penton, James M. (1997), Apocalypse Delayed: The Story of Jehovah's Witnesses (2nd ed.), University of Toronto Press, ISBN 0-8020-7973-3 Pierson et al, A.N. (September 1, 1917), Light After Darkness, retrieved July 21, 2009 Rogerson, Alan (1969), Millions Now Living Will Never Die, Constable, London, ISBN 0-09-455940-6 Rutherford, J.F. (August 1, 1917), Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. , Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society, retrieved July 19, 2009 Rutherford, J.F. (October 1, 1917), Harvest Siftings, Part II, Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society, retrieved July 19, 2009 Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society (1975), 1975 Yearbook, Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society (1959), Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. , Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society (1993), Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. , Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society Wills, Tony (2006), A People For His Name, Lulu Enterprises, ISBN 978-1-4303-0100-4 External links
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    • Guest Nicole
      By Guest Nicole
      So, a female Jehovah’s Witnesses member decided to knock on a man’s door to minister to him, and he came out to attend to her totally unclad.


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    • By ARchiv@L
      Meetings for Field Service That Accomplish Their Purpose
      1. Meetings for field service have what purpose?
      1 On one occasion, Jesus met with 70 of his disciples before they went on a preaching campaign. (
      Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. ) He gave encouragement by reminding them that they would not be alone and that they were being directed by “the Master of the harvest,” Jehovah. He also gave them instructions that equipped them to do the work, and he organized them “by twos.” Today, the meetings we have prior to going out in the ministry serve a similar purpose—to encourage, equip, and organize us. 2. How long should a meeting for field service be?
      2 Currently, a meeting for field service lasts from 10 to 15 minutes, which includes organizing the groups, assigning territory, and saying a prayer. This is now being adjusted. Beginning in April, a meeting for field service will last from five to seven minutes. However, when it follows another congregation meeting, it should be even shorter, since those attending have already enjoyed a fine Scriptural discussion. Having brief meetings for field service will enable all to spend more time in the ministry. In addition, if pioneers or publishers have begun their preaching before the meeting for field service, only a brief interruption of their activity will be necessary.
      3. How may meetings for field service be arranged so that they are most helpful to the publishers?
      3 Meetings for field service should be arranged so that they will be most helpful to the publishers. In many congregations it is advantageous for field service groups to meet separately rather than to combine at one location. This may make it easier for publishers to travel to the meeting for field service and perhaps to the territory. Publishers can be quickly organized, and it may be easier for group overseers to give close attention to those in their care. The body of elders can consider local circumstances and determine what is best. Before ending the meeting with a brief prayer, all should know where and with whom they are going to work.
      4. Why should meetings for field service not be viewed as less important than other meetings?
      4 Not Less Important Than Other Congregation Meetings: Because meetings for field service are held for the benefit of those who are going out in the ministry, they may not be attended by the entire congregation. However, this does not mean that they should be taken lightly or viewed as less important than other congregation meetings. Like all our meetings, meetings for field service are a provision from Jehovah that enables us to incite one another to love and fine works. (
      Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. ) Therefore, the conductor should be well-prepared so that the discussion will honor Jehovah and benefit those in attendance. If it is practical to do so, publishers who are going out in the ministry should make an effort to attend. Meetings for field service should not be taken lightly or viewed as less important than other congregation meetings
      5. (a) What is the service overseer’s role in arranging meetings for field service? (b) How should a sister conduct a meeting for field service?
      5 Preparation by the Conductor: In order for someone to be well-prepared to present a meeting part, he needs to receive the assignment in advance. This is no less true with regard to meetings for field service. Of course, when field service groups meet separately, group overseers or their assistants conduct the meeting for their group. However, when the congregation will have a combined meeting for field service, the service overseer will assign someone to conduct. Some service overseers give a schedule to all the conductors and post a copy of it on the information board. The service overseer should use good judgment when assigning conductors, keeping in mind that the quality of these meetings will also depend on the teaching and organizing ability of those conducting. If no elder, ministerial servant, or other qualified baptized brother is available to be assigned on some days, the service overseer should assign a capable baptized sister to conduct.—See the article “Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. .”
      6. Why is it important for the assigned conductor to prepare well?
      6 When we receive an assignment for the Theocratic Ministry School or Service Meeting, we take it seriously and prepare well. Few of us would wait until we are traveling to the meeting to begin thinking about what we will say. An assignment to conduct a meeting for field service should be viewed the same way. Now that the meeting for field service will be shorter, good preparation is especially important so that the meeting will be meaningful and end on time. Good preparation also includes obtaining territory in advance.
      7. What are some things that the conductor could discuss?
      7 What to Discuss: Since circumstances vary from territory to territory, the faithful slave has not provided an outline for each meeting for field service. The box “
      Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. ” outlines some possibilities. Generally, the meeting will be handled as a discussion. On occasion, it may include a well-prepared demonstration or an appropriate video from jw.org. When preparing for a meeting for field service, the conductor should think about what will encourage and equip those going out in the ministry that day. When preparing for a meeting for field service, the conductor should think about what will encourage and equip those going out in the ministry that day
      8. What might be most beneficial to discuss during meetings for field service on Saturdays and Sundays?
      8 On Saturdays, for example, most publishers offer The Watchtower and Awake! Many who share in the ministry on Saturdays do not go out during the week, so they may have difficulty remembering the presentation they practiced during their Family Worship evening. Therefore, it may be beneficial for the conductor to review one of the sample presentations from the back of Our Kingdom Ministry. Other options include discussing how to incorporate a local news item, event, or holiday into a magazine presentation or how to lay the groundwork for the next visit if the magazines are accepted. If some at the meeting for field service have already been using the particular magazines being offered, the conductor could ask them to share some brief suggestions or relate encouraging experiences. On Sundays, the conductor might choose to do something similar with regard to the offer for the month. Study publications, such as the Good News and Listen to God brochures and the Bible Teach book may be offered any day, so the conductor could briefly consider how one of these publications may be offered.
      9. What could be discussed on the weekend when engaged in a special campaign?
      9 If the congregation is engaged in a special campaign on the weekend, the conductor might consider how to offer the current magazines along with the invitation or the tract, or he could discuss what to do if interest is shown. Another option would be to share experiences that highlight the value of such campaigns.
      10, 11. Why is preparation by the publishers important for the success of a meeting for field service?
      10 Preparation by Publishers: Publishers also have a part in making a meeting for field service successful. By preparing in advance for service, perhaps during their family worship, they will have something to share with other publishers. Good preparation also includes obtaining magazines and literature supplies before arriving at the meeting for field service so that all can leave for the territory without unnecessary delay.
      11 It is also important to plan to arrive at the meeting for field service a few minutes before it begins. Of course, we endeavor to be on time for all congregation meetings. However, it can be especially disruptive when we arrive late for a meeting for field service. How so? The brother taking the lead considers a number of factors before organizing the group. If few publishers are present, he may choose to send everyone to a territory that has been partially worked. If some walked to the meeting for field service and the territory is a distance away, he may pair these publishers with those who drove vehicles. If the territory is in a high-crime area, he may assign brothers to work with or near groups of sisters. Infirm publishers might be assigned to work a street that is level or that has homes with fewer stairs. Newer publishers might be assigned to work with more experienced ones. But, if publishers arrive late, the arrangements will often have to be revised or redone in order to accommodate the latecomers. Of course, we may on occasion have a legitimate reason for being late. However, if we are habitually late, we might ask ourselves if it is because we lack appreciation for meetings for field service or because we fail to organize our affairs in advance.
      12. If you generally make your own service arrangements, what might you consider?
      12 Publishers who meet for service can choose to make their own arrangements before the meeting begins, or they can have a partner assigned to them. If you generally make your own arrangements, could you “widen out” by working with a variety of publishers rather than with the same close friends each time? (
      Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. , ftn.) Could you occasionally arrange to work with a newer publisher to help him make advancement in his teaching ability? (Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. ) Listen carefully to any instructions that you are given, including direction regarding where you are to begin preaching. When the meeting concludes, avoid changing the arrangements and depart for the territory promptly. 13. If all involved are conscientious and do their part, how will meetings for field service benefit us?
      13 After preaching, the 70 whom Jesus organized for the ministry “returned with joy.” (
      Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. ) No doubt, Jesus’ meeting with them before they began preaching helped them to be successful. Today, meetings for field service can have a similar benefit. If all involved are conscientious and do their part, meetings for field service will encourage, equip, and organize us to accomplish our commission to give “a witness to all the nations.”—Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. . When a Sister Must Conduct A sister should wear a head covering and would normally be seated when conducting a meeting for field service. What she chooses to discuss would be similar to what a brother would consider. While she should avoid giving the appearance of instructing those in attendance, she may initiate a group discussion. If she invites another baptized sister to say the prayer, that sister should also wear a head covering. If a baptized brother joins the meeting after it has started, the sister would normally invite him to finish the meeting. The service overseer should try to anticipate unusual situations and give appropriate instructions so as to minimize awkwardness. For example, a very young, perhaps preteen, baptized brother might attend when a sister is assigned to conduct, but the elders feel that he is not yet qualified to conduct the meeting. In such a case, the service overseer can inform those involved that the assigned sister should conduct the meeting, but the brother should say the prayer if the elders feel that he is qualified. Or perhaps there is an adult brother who is restricted from conducting the meeting or offering congregation prayer for reasons known by the elders. Without revealing confidential information, the elders should let the assigned sisters know that they should conduct and pray even if he is in attendance. The elders might also let the brother know which days sisters are scheduled to conduct the meetings for field service.
      During a Meeting for Field Service, You Might Consider: A sample presentation from Our Kingdom Ministry.
      A video about the ministry from jw.org.
      A certain aspect of a good presentation, such as the introduction, laying the groundwork to return, or mentioning the donation arrangement when literature is accepted.
      An encouraging or instructive scripture that relates to the ministry.
      A local or published field service experience.
      Information from an Our Kingdom Ministry article.
      Information from a recent Service Meeting part.
      Ministry-related information from The Watchtower.
      Ministry-related information from such publications as the Ministry School and “Come Be My Follower” books.
      A feature of jw.org that can be used in the ministry.
      A feature of the revised New World Translation that can be used in the ministry.
      How to start a conversation with someone who may be encountered in your territory, such as an atheist, an evolutionist, a Hindu, or a Buddhist.
      How to respond to a specific potential conversation stopper.
      How to help your field service partner be more effective at the door.
      How to respond when meeting someone who speaks another language.
      How to engage in a specific avenue of the ministry that some will be sharing in, such as the search work, telephone witnessing, public witnessing, return visits, or Bible studies.
      A reminder about safety, flexibility, good manners, having a positive attitude, or something similar.

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    • Eric Ouellet

      Que vos prières soit préparées comme une encens apaisante pour Jéhovah

      Chez les Israélites, l’offrande d’encens était un symbole approprié pour désigner les prières que Dieu entend. C’est pourquoi le psalmiste David a chanté à Jéhovah : 

      “ Que ma prière soit préparée comme l’encens devant toi. ”
      — Psaume 141 : 2
      JÉHOVAH DIEU a chargé son prophète Moïse de préparer un encens sacré à l’usage du culte qui lui était rendu dans le tabernacle d’Israël. Il a donné lui-même la formule de ce mélange composé de quatre ingrédients aromatiques qui dégageaient une bonne odeur. — Exode 30:34-38.
      L’alliance de la Loi dans laquelle la nation d’Israël avait été admise prévoyait de faire brûler quotidiennement de l’encens (Exode 30:7, 8). Ce geste avait-il une signification particulière ? Oui. En témoignent ces paroles du psalmiste : “ Que ma prière soit préparée comme l’encens devant toi [Jéhovah Dieu], l’élévation de mes paumes comme l’offrande de grain du soir. ” (Psaume 141:2). De plus, dans le livre de la Révélation, l’apôtre Jean dit de ceux qui se tiennent autour du trône céleste de Dieu qu’ils ont des bols d’or pleins d’encens. “ Et, précise le récit inspiré, l’encens représente les prières des saints. ” (Révélation 5:8). Il apparaît donc que la combustion d’encens odorant symbolise les prières agréées que les serviteurs de Jéhovah offrent jour et nuit. — 1 Thessaloniciens 3:10 ; Hébreux 5:7
      Pour que Dieu agrée nos prières, nous devons le prier au nom de Jésus Christ (Jean 16:23, 24). Au demeurant, comment pouvons-nous améliorer la qualité de nos prières ? L’examen de quelques exemples pris dans les Écritures devrait nous aider à préparer nos prières comme l’encens devant Jéhovah. — Proverbes 15:8.
      Prions avec foi
      Si nous voulons que nos prières montent vers Dieu comme un encens de bonne odeur, il nous faut les lui offrir avec foi (Hébreux 11:6). Lorsque des anciens ont affaire à une personne spirituellement malade qui réagit bien à leurs conseils bibliques, ‘ leur prière de foi rétablit celui qui est souffrant ’. (Jacques 5:15.) Notre Père céleste prend plaisir à voir quelqu’un le prier avec foi et étudier consciencieusement sa Parole. Un psalmiste qui manifestait cet excellent état d’esprit a écrit : “ Je lèverai mes paumes vers tes commandements que j’ai aimés, et je veux m’intéresser à tes prescriptions. Enseigne-moi la bonté, le bon sens et la connaissance, car j’ai exercé la foi en tes commandements. ” (Psaume 119:48, 66). ‘ Étendons nos paumes ’ en priant avec humilité et exerçons la foi en observant les commandements de Dieu.
      La prière un lien véritable à la sagesse divine
      Supposons que nous manquions de sagesse pour surmonter une épreuve ; par exemple, nous pourrions ne pas être convaincus qu’une certaine prophétie soit déjà en train de se réaliser. Plutôt que de laisser cette incertitude nous déstabiliser spirituellement, prions pour recevoir de la sagesse (Galates 5:7, 8 ; Jacques 1:5-8). N’escomptons pas cependant que Dieu nous réponde d’une manière spectaculaire, mais démontrons la sincérité de nos prières en faisant ce qu’il attend de tous ses serviteurs : qu’ils bâtissent leur foi en étudiant les Écritures à l’aide des publications fournies par l’intermédiaire de “ l’esclave fidèle et avisé ”. (Matthieu 24:45-47 ; Josué 1:7, 8.) Nous avons besoin également d’augmenter notre connaissance en prenant part régulièrement aux réunions du peuple de Dieu. — Hébreux 10:24, 25.
      Certains chrétiens semblent avoir perdu de vue que nous sommes à un stade avancé du “ temps de la fin ”. (Daniel 12:4.) C’est ce que révèlent l’orientation qu’ils donnent à leur vie et leurs centres d’intérêt. Il convient de prier pour que ces chrétiens ravivent ou affermissent leur foi dans les preuves que fournit la Bible que la présence du Christ a commencé en 1914 et que, ayant été intronisé au ciel par Jéhovah cette année-là, il règne depuis lors au milieu de ses ennemis (Psaume 110:1, 2 ; Matthieu 24:3). Nous devrions tous être bien conscients du fait que des événements annoncés, tels que la destruction de la fausse religion (“ Babylone la Grande ”), l’attaque satanique de Gog de Magog contre les serviteurs de Jéhovah et l’intervention salvatrice de Dieu le Tout-Puissant lors de la guerre d’Har-Maguédôn, peuvent survenir avec une rapidité saisissante et s’enchaîner sur une période relativement courte (Révélation 16:14, 16 ; 18:1-5 ; Ézékiel 38:18-23). Aussi, prions Dieu de nous aider à rester spirituellement éveillés. Puissions-nous tous prier avec conviction pour que le nom de Jéhovah soit sanctifié, pour que son Royaume vienne et pour que sa volonté se fasse sur la terre comme elle est faite au ciel ! Puissions-nous aussi continuer à exercer la foi et à démontrer par des actes la sincérité de nos prières (Matthieu 6:9, 10) ! Que tous ceux qui aiment Jéhovah puissent vraiment chercher d’abord le Royaume et Sa justice, et participer le plus possible à la prédication de la bonne nouvelle avant que vienne la fin ! — Matthieu 6:33 ; 24:14.
      Louons et remercions Jéhovah
      Une manière importante de ‘ préparer nos prières comme l’encens ’ consiste à louer et à remercier Dieu du fond de notre cœur. Le roi David a prononcé une prière de ce genre quand lui et le peuple d’Israël ont fait des contributions pour la construction du temple de Jéhovah. Il s’est exprimé ainsi : “ Béni sois-tu, ô Jéhovah le Dieu d’Israël notre père, depuis des temps indéfinis et pour des temps indéfinis. À toi, ô Jéhovah, sont la grandeur, la puissance, la beauté, la supériorité et la dignité ; car tout, dans les cieux et sur la terre, est à toi. À toi est le royaume, ô Jéhovah, Celui qui t’élève aussi en chef au-dessus de tout. La richesse et la gloire sont grâce à toi, et tu domines tout ; dans ta main il y a force et puissance, et dans ta main est le pouvoir de rendre grand et de donner de la vigueur à tous. Et maintenant, ô notre Dieu, nous te remercions et nous louons ton nom magnifique. ” — 1 Chroniques 29:10-13.
      Quelles splendides expressions de louange et de reconnaissance ! Même si nos prières ne sont pas aussi éloquentes, elles peuvent témoigner de la même sincérité. Les actions de grâces et les louanges abondent dans le livre des Psaumes. Les Psaumes 148, 149 et 150, en particulier, louent Dieu en des termes particulièrement choisis. La gratitude envers Dieu imprègne également de nombreux psaumes. “ J’ai demandé une chose à Jéhovah, a chanté David, — c’est ce que je chercherai : Que j’habite dans la maison de Jéhovah tous les jours de ma vie, pour contempler le charme de Jéhovah et pour regarder avec admiration son temple. ” (Psaume 27:4). Agissons en harmonie avec de telles prières en participant avec zèle à toutes les activités des “ foules rassemblées ” par Jéhovah (Psaume 26:12). Ajoutons à cela la méditation quotidienne de sa Parole, et nous aurons quantité de raisons de louer et de remercier sincèrement Jéhovah.
      Recherchons humblement l’aide de Jéhovah
      Nous avons l’assurance que Jéhovah entend les appels à l’aide de ses Témoins qui le servent d’un cœur entier (Isaïe 43:10-12). C’est ce qu’illustre un épisode de la vie d’Asa, qui a été roi de Juda pendant 41 ans (977-937 av. n. è.). Après dix premières années de règne marquées par la paix, le pays a été envahi par une armée de un million d’hommes conduite par Zérah l’Éthiopien. Bien qu’infiniment moins nombreux, Asa et ses hommes sont sortis à la rencontre de l’ennemi. Cependant, avant de livrer bataille, Asa a prononcé une prière fervente, dans laquelle il a exprimé sa confiance dans le pouvoir salvateur de Jéhovah. Implorant son aide, il a dit : “ Sur toi nous nous appuyons et c’est en ton nom que nous sommes venus contre cette foule. Ô Jéhovah, tu es notre Dieu. Que le mortel ne conserve pas de vigueur contre toi. ” En conséquence, Jéhovah a sauvé Juda à cause de son grand nom ; il a donné aux Israélites une victoire totale (2 Chroniques 14:1-15). Qu’il nous délivre de l’épreuve ou qu’il nous donne la force de l’endurer, il est hors de doute que Dieu entend nos appels à l’aide.
      Soyons certains que Jéhovah entend tout autant nos requêtes lorsque nous ne savons pas comment agir dans une certaine situation critique. C’est ce qu’a pu vérifier le roi de Juda Yehoshaphat, dont les 25 ans de règne ont commencé en 936 avant notre ère. Quand Juda s’est trouvé menacé par les armées coalisées de Moab, d’Ammôn et de la région montagneuse de Séïr, Yehoshaphat a fait cette supplication : “ Ô notre Dieu, n’exécuteras-tu pas le jugement sur eux ? Car en nous il n’y a pas de force devant cette foule nombreuse qui vient contre nous ; et nous, nous ne savons que faire, mais nos yeux sont tournés vers toi. ” Jéhovah a répondu à cette prière humble : il a combattu en faveur de Juda en semant la confusion dans les rangs des ennemis de sorte que ceux-ci se sont entretués. À la suite de cela, la crainte a saisi les nations d’alentour, et Juda a connu la paix (2 Chroniques 20:1-30). Lorsque nous manquons de la sagesse nécessaire pour résoudre une grave difficulté, reconnaissons, comme Yehoshaphat : ‘ Nous ne savons que faire, mais nos yeux sont tournés vers toi, Jéhovah. ’ L’esprit saint peut nous rappeler alors à la mémoire des pensées bibliques qui nous donneront la solution, à moins que l’aide divine ne revête une forme qui dépasse l’entendement humain. — Romains 8:26, 27.
       Avant de recevoir l’aide de Dieu, peut-être nous faudra-t-il persévérer dans la prière. Nehémia a mené deuil, a pleuré, jeûné et prié pendant des jours à propos de la muraille en ruine de Jérusalem et de la situation pitoyable des habitants de Juda (Nehémia 1:1-11). Ses prières sont manifestement montées vers Dieu comme un encens de bonne odeur. Devant la mine abattue de Nehémia, le roi perse Artaxerxès lui a un jour demandé : “ Que cherches-tu donc à obtenir ? ” “ Aussitôt, raconte Nehémia, je priai le Dieu des cieux. ” Cette requête courte et silencieuse a été exaucée : Nehémia a reçu l’autorisation d’accomplir ce qui lui tenait à cœur : se rendre à Jérusalem pour y rebâtir la muraille. — Nehémia 2:1-8.
      Jésus nous apprend à prier
      De toutes les prières qui ont été conservées dans les Écritures, il en est une particulièrement instructive ; c’est la prière modèle, que Jésus Christ a présentée comme un encens de bonne odeur. Voici ce que nous lisons dans l’Évangile de Luc : “ Un [des] disciples [de Jésus] lui dit : ‘ Seigneur, apprends-nous à prier, comme Jean aussi l’a appris à ses disciples. ’ Alors il leur dit : ‘ Quand vous priez, dites : “ Père, que ton nom soit sanctifié. Que ton royaume vienne. Donne-nous notre pain pour le jour selon les besoins du jour. Et pardonne-nous nos péchés, car nous-mêmes aussi nous pardonnons à tous ceux qui nous doivent ; et ne nous fais pas entrer en tentation. ” ’ ” (Luc 11:1-4 ; Matthieu 6:9-13). Cette prière n’était pas destinée à être récitée, mais plutôt à donner une indication de ce pour quoi il faut prier. 
       “ Père, que ton nom soit sanctifié. ” Jéhovah accorde à ceux qui le servent et lui sont voués le privilège spécial de l’appeler Père. Comme des enfants qui confient tout à un père qu’ils savent miséricordieux, nous devrions prendre régulièrement le temps d’adresser à Dieu des prières empreintes de dignité et de vénération (Psaume 103:13, 14). Nos prières devraient traduire l’intérêt que nous portons à la sanctification de son nom, que nous aspirons à voir lavé de tout l’opprobre dont il a été couvert. Oui, nous voulons que le nom de Jéhovah soit mis à part et tenu pour saint, ou sacré. — Psaumes 5:11 ; 63:3, 4 ; 148:12, 13 ; Ézékiel 38:23.
      “ Que ton royaume vienne. ”
      “ Que ton royaume vienne. ” Le Royaume représente la domination que Jéhovah exerce par l’intermédiaire du gouvernement céleste messianique qu’il a confié à son Fils, Jésus, et aux “ saints ” qui lui sont associés (Daniel 7:13, 14, 18, 27 ; Révélation 20:6). Bientôt, ce Royaume ‘ viendra ’ contre tous ceux sur la terre qui s’opposent à la souveraineté divine et il les fera disparaître (Daniel 2:44). Après cela, la volonté de Jéhovah sera faite sur la terre, comme elle l’est au ciel (Matthieu 6:10). Quelle joie ce sera pour toutes les créatures qui servent fidèlement le Souverain de l’univers !
       “ Donne-nous notre pain pour le jour selon les besoins du jour. ” En demandant à Jéhovah la nourriture “ pour le jour ”, nous montrons que nous ne cherchons pas à avoir abondance de biens, mais seulement de quoi satisfaire nos besoins quotidiens. Tout en comptant sur Dieu, nous travaillons et mettons à profit les moyens à notre disposition pour nous procurer la nourriture et les autres choses nécessaires à la vie (2 Thessaloniciens 3:7-10). Nous devrions évidemment remercier notre Bienfaiteur céleste, car c’est grâce à son amour, à sa sagesse et à sa puissance que nous avons tout cela. — Actes 14:15-17
       “ Pardonne-nous nos péchés, car nous-mêmes aussi nous pardonnons à tous ceux qui nous doivent. ” Étant donné que nous sommes imparfaits et pécheurs, il nous est impossible de nous conformer absolument aux normes parfaites de Jéhovah. Nous avons donc besoin de le prier de nous accorder son pardon en vertu du sacrifice rédempteur de Jésus. Mais pour que ‘ Celui qui entend la prière ’ applique le mérite de ce sacrifice à nos péchés, il nous faut également nous repentir et accepter toute discipline qu’il juge bon de nous administrer (Psaume 65:2 ; Romains 5:8 ; 6:23 ; Hébreux 12:4-11). Enfin, nous ne pouvons nous attendre à ce que Dieu nous pardonne que si nous “ avons remis à nos débiteurs ”, c’est-à-dire à ceux qui ont péché contre nous. — Matthieu 6:12, 14, 15.
       “ Ne nous fais pas entrer en tentation. ” Quand la Bible dit que Jéhovah fait telle ou telle chose, c’est parfois simplement pour dire qu’il permet qu’elle se produise (Ruth 1:20, 21). Ce n’est pas lui qui nous tente pour nous faire pécher (Jacques 1:13). Les tentations de commettre le mal viennent du Diable, de notre chair imparfaite et du monde. Satan est le Tentateur qui essaie par ses manœuvres de nous faire pécher contre Dieu (Matthieu 4:3 ; 1 Thessaloniciens 3:5). Lorsque nous prions Dieu de ‘ ne pas nous faire entrer en tentation ’, nous lui demandons en fait de ne pas permettre que nous cédions si nous sommes tentés de lui désobéir. Il peut nous indiquer la voie à suivre pour ne pas succomber ni nous laisser vaincre par Satan, le “ méchant ”. — Matthieu 6:13 ; 1 Corinthiens 10:13.
      Agissons en harmonie avec nos prières
      Comment pouvons-nous agir en harmonie avec les prières dans lesquelles nous demandons à être heureux en mariage et dans notre vie de famille?
      La prière modèle de Jésus aborde les points principaux, mais il y a toutes sortes de choses qui peuvent faire l’objet de nos prières. Ce peut être, par exemple, le désir d’être heureux en mariage ; ou bien celui de rester pur jusqu’au jour des noces. Dans ce cas, prions pour avoir de la maîtrise de soi. Mais soyons également conséquents avec nos prières en rejetant les lectures et les divertissements impurs. Soyons déterminés aussi à ‘ nous marier seulement dans le Seigneur ’. (1 Corinthiens 7:39 ; Deutéronome 7:3, 4.) Une fois mariés, ne nous contentons pas de prier pour être heureux : appliquons les conseils venant de Dieu. Si nous avons des enfants, aspirons-nous à les voir devenir de fidèles serviteurs de Jéhovah ? Alors, tout en priant dans ce sens, faisons tout notre possible pour leur inculquer les vérités divines en étudiant la Bible avec eux et en les emmenant régulièrement aux réunions chrétiennes. — Deutéronome 6:5-9 ; 31:12 ; Proverbes 22:6.
      Prions-nous pour que Dieu bénisse notre ministère ? Agissons en harmonie avec ces prières en participant de façon significative à la prédication du Royaume. Si nous prions pour avoir des occasions d’aider les autres à emprunter le chemin de la vie éternelle, ayons soin de bien prendre note des personnes qui manifestent de l’intérêt et soyons prêts à adapter notre programme pour y inclure des études bibliques. Enfin, si nous poursuivons l’objectif de devenir pionniers afin de prendre part à l’œuvre d’évangélisation à plein temps, allons dans le sens de nos prières en augmentant notre participation au ministère et en prêchant avec des pionniers. Nous montrerons ainsi que nous agissons en harmonie avec nos prières.
      Si nous servons Jéhovah fidèlement, nous pouvons être certains qu’il répondra aux prières conformes à sa volonté que nous lui adresserons (1 Jean 5:14, 15).. Faisant une comparaison avec l’odeur agréable de l’encens que les prêtres offraient dans le temple, la Parole de Dieu nous donne cette assurance : “ La prière des hommes droits est pour lui un plaisir. ” — Proverbes 15:8.
       

      · 0 replies
    • folens  »  Eric Ouellet

      Hello Eric, as tu déjà préparé le sujet des joyaux du 10 novembre concernant le but des sacrifices et offrandes, sachant que nous devons d'abord présenter le livre du Lévitique. Comment être concis?
      Le but des sacrifices et des offrandes.dot la Mer Morte.pps
      · 1 reply
    • Emma Rose

      Would a kind soul please help me with how to reply using the quote more than once.
      · 5 replies
    • Dee Gordon  »  T.B. (Twyla)

      HI TWYLA...DEE GORDON HERE.  WOULD LIKE  TO CHANGE MY EMAIL ADDRESS YOU SEND MY MEETING WORKBOOK TO.  I DON'T USE FACEBOOK BUT WOULD LIKE TO CONTINUE TO RECEIVE THE WORKBOOK INFO AND WATCHTOWER NOTES PLEASE . THIS ONE STILL RUNNING YOU HAVE ME SIGNED UP FOR...JUST THAT IT WOULD BE MORE CONVENIENT AT THIS TIME.
      · 3 replies
    • Eric Ouellet

      Apprenons à craindre Jéhovah
      “ La crainte de Jéhovah est le début de la sagesse. ” — PROVERBES 9:10.

      IL FUT un temps où dire de quelqu’un craignait Dieu était un compliment. Beaucoup jugent aujourd’hui désuète et illogique l’idée de craindre Dieu. " Pourquoi craindre Dieu s’il est amour?" s’étonnent-ils. C’est que la crainte est à leurs yeux un sentiment forcément négatif, voire paralysant. Or, la crainte de Dieu, la vraie, est bien autre chose que de la peur et, comme nous allons le voir, elle ne se résume pas à un sentiment.
       La Bible présente la crainte de Dieu sous un jour positif (Isaïe 11:3). Craindre Dieu, c’est éprouver envers lui un profond respect et désirer vivement ne pas lui déplaire (Psaume 115:11). C’est aussi accepter ses normes morales et s’y conformer strictement, appliquer dans notre vie ses critères du bien et du mal. Un ouvrage de référence indique que cette crainte salutaire exprime “ un rapport à Dieu, une disposition d’esprit dominante, qui incite à se conduire avec sagesse et à rejeter le mal sous toutes ses formes ”. La Bible dit d’ailleurs que “ la crainte de Jéhovah est le début de la sagesse ”. — Proverbes 9:10.
      La crainte de Dieu influe sur de nombreux domaines de l’existence. Outre la sagesse, elle favorise la joie, la paix, la prospérité, la longévité, l’espoir, la confiance (Psaume 2:11 ; Proverbes 1:7 ; 10:27 ; 14:26 ; 22:4 ; 23:17, 18 ; Actes 9:31). Elle est étroitement liée à la foi et à l’amour. Pour tout dire, elle touche tous les aspects de nos relations avec Dieu et avec les humains (Deutéronome 10:12 ; Job 6:14 ; Hébreux 11:7). Craindre Dieu, enfin, c’est avoir la ferme conviction que notre Père céleste se soucie de nous personnellement et qu’il est disposé à pardonner nos transgressions (Psaume 130:4). Il n’y a donc qu’aux pécheurs non repentants que Dieu devrait inspirer de la terreur. — Hébreux 10:26-31.
      APPRENONS À CRAINDRE DIEU
      Puisqu’il est indispensable de le craindre pour prendre de sages décisions et recevoir ses bénédictions, comment "apprendre à craindre Jéhovah"
      dans le bon sens du terme (Deutéronome 17:19) ? De nombreux exemples d’hommes et de femmes qui craignaient Dieu ont été consignés dans les Écritures “ pour notre instruction ”. (Romains 15:4.) Intéressons-nous à la vie de l’un de ces personnages, le roi David.
      Saül, le premier roi d’Israël, avait la crainte du peuple, mais pas la crainte de Dieu. Cela lui a valu d’être rejeté par Jéhovah (1 Samuel 15:24-26). David, lui, était un homme qui craignait vraiment Dieu ; sa vie et son intimité avec Jéhovah en témoignent. Les nombreuses nuits à la belle étoile qu’il avait passées dans sa jeunesse à faire paître les moutons de son père l’avaient certainement aidé à comprendre ce qu’est la crainte de Jéhovah (1 Samuel 16:11). De l’immense univers, il n’avait contemplé qu’une infime partie, mais cela lui avait suffi pour saisir l’essentiel : Dieu mérite respect et adoration. “ Quand je vois tes cieux, les œuvres de tes doigts, la lune et les étoiles que tu as préparées, écrira-t-il plus tard, qu’est-ce que le mortel pour que tu penses à lui, et le fils de l’homme tiré du sol pour que tu t’occupes de lui ? ” — Psaume 8:3, 4.
      Il était normal que David soit impressionné quand il comparait sa petitesse à l’immensité des cieux étoilés. Mais, loin de l’effrayer, cette connaissance le portait à louer Jéhovah. “ Les cieux proclament la gloire de Dieu, a-t-il écrit ; et l’œuvre de ses mains, l’étendue l’annonce. ” (Psaume 19:1). Ce profond respect le rapprochait de Jéhovah ; il lui donnait envie d’apprendre ses voies parfaites et de les suivre. Percevez-vous les sentiments qui l’habitaient quand il chantait ce psaume : “ Tu es grand et tu fais des choses prodigieuses ; tu es Dieu, toi seul. Instruis-moi de ta voie, ô Jéhovah ! Je marcherai dans ta vérité. Unifie mon cœur pour craindre ton nom. ” — Psaume 86:10, 11.
      Quand les Philistins ont envahi le pays d’Israël, leur champion, Goliath, a provoqué les Israélites du haut de ses trois mètres. " Envoyez donc quelqu’un m’affronter en combat singulier ! les narguait-il. S’il me bat, nous serons vos serviteurs. " (1 Samuel 17:4-10). Saül et toute son armée étaient terrifiés. Mais pas David. S’il devait craindre quelqu’un, c’était Jéhovah, et non un homme, si fort soit-il. “ Je viens vers toi avec le nom de Jéhovah des armées, a-t-il lancé à Goliath. [...] Et toute cette assemblée saura que ce n’est ni par l’épée ni par la lance que Jéhovah sauve réellement, car à Jéhovah appartient la bataille. ” Grâce à Jéhovah, une fronde et une pierre ont suffi à David pour abattre le géant. — 1 Samuel 17:45-47.
      Il peut arriver que nous nous trouvions devant des obstacles ou des ennemis aussi intimidants que ceux qu’a dû affronter David. Que faire alors ? Imiter David et d’autres fidèles du passé en s’armant de la crainte de Dieu. La crainte de Dieu l’emporte sur la crainte de l’homme. À ses compatriotes en butte à l’opposition, le fidèle Nehémia a adressé cette exhortation : “ N’ayez pas peur à cause d’eux. Souvenez-vous de Jéhovah le Grand et le Redoutable. ” (Nehémia 4:14). C’est parce qu’ils avaient son soutien que David, Nehémia et d’autres ont réussi à faire ce que Jéhovah attendait d’eux. Nous le pourrons également si nous craignons Dieu.
      Après celle sur Goliath, Jéhovah a accordé d’autres victoires à David. Jaloux, Saül a tenté de tuer le jeune homme, d’abord dans un geste de colère, puis par des moyens détournés, enfin en mobilisant toute une armée contre lui. Même si David avait reçu l’assurance qu’il serait roi, pendant des années il a dû fuir, se battre, et attendre le moment fixé par Jéhovah. Dans toutes ces situations, il ne s’est jamais départi de sa crainte du vrai Dieu. — 1 Samuel 18:9, 11, 17 ; 24:2.
      À un moment donné, David s’est réfugié auprès d’Akish, le roi de Gath, ville philistine d’où était originaire Goliath (1 Samuel 21:10-15). Les serviteurs d’Akish l’ont dénoncé comme ennemi. Comment a-t-il réagi à cette situation périlleuse ? Il s’est confié à Jéhovah de tout son cœur (Psaume 56:1-4, 11-13). Il s’est finalement sorti du guêpier en simulant la démence, mais il était bien conscient de devoir son salut à Jéhovah, qui avait béni son stratagème. David a prouvé qu’il craignait vraiment Dieu en plaçant toute sa confiance en lui. — Psaume 34:4-6, 9-11.
      À l’exemple de David, nous montrerons que nous craignons Dieu en ayant confiance en sa promesse de nous aider dans les épreuves. “ Roule ta voie sur Jéhovah, compte sur lui, et c’est lui qui agira ”, a affirmé David (Psaume 37:5). Cela ne veut pas dire qu’il faut mettre nos problèmes entre les mains de Jéhovah sans rien faire d’autre qu’attendre son intervention. David ne s’est pas contenté de prier et de voir venir. Il a cherché une solution à son problème en utilisant les capacités physiques et intellectuelles dont Jéhovah l’avait doté. Pour autant, il ne pensait pas que ses efforts d’humain suffiraient. Cette façon de voir devrait aussi être la nôtre. Faisons tout ce qui est en notre pouvoir, puis laissons Jéhovah se charger du reste. Cela étant, il est fréquent que nous ne puissions rien faire d’autre que compter sur Jéhovah. C’est là que la crainte de Dieu revêt un caractère très personnel. Combien est réconfortante cette réflexion de David : “ L’intimité avec Jéhovah appartient à ceux qui le craignent. ” — Psaume 25:14.
      Il s’agit donc de ne pas banaliser nos prières et nos relations avec Dieu. Lorsque nous nous ‘ avançons ’ vers Jéhovah, nous devons “ croire qu’il est, et qu’il devient celui qui récompense ceux qui le cherchent réellement ”. (Hébreux 11:6 ; Jacques 1:5-8.) Et quand il vient à notre aide, il nous faut, conformément au conseil de l’apôtre Paul, ‘ nous montrer reconnaissants ’. (Colossiens 3:15, 17.) Ne ressemblons jamais à ceux dont un chrétien oint expérimenté a dit : “ Ils prennent Dieu pour une sorte de garçon de café. Ils aimeraient qu’il réponde à un claquement de doigts dès qu’ils ont besoin de quelque chose, et qu’il disparaisse dès qu’ils ont eu ce qu’ils voulaient. ” Où est leur crainte de Dieu ?
      Le fait que Jéhovah l’ait secouru a augmenté la confiance et la crainte que David éprouvait envers lui (Psaume 31:22-24). Trois fois, cependant, David a mis notablement sa crainte de Dieu entre parenthèses, ce qui a eu des conséquences tragiques. La première fois, c’est quand il a décidé de faire transporter l’arche de l’alliance à Jérusalem sur un chariot, et non sur les épaules des Lévites comme le prescrivait la Loi. Ouzza, qui conduisait le chariot, a saisi l’Arche pour l’empêcher de tomber. Dieu l’a fait mourir sur le champ pour cet “ acte d’irrévérence ”. Certes, Ouzza avait commis un péché grave, mais c’est bien David qui, pour n’avoir pas respecté la Loi divine, était responsable de ce drame. Craindre Dieu suppose que l’on fasse les choses comme lui l’entend. — 2 Samuel 6:2-9 ; Nombres 4:15 ; 7:9.
      Une autre fois, sous l’impulsion de Satan, David a procédé au dénombrement des hommes de guerre en Israël (1 Chroniques 21:1). Là encore, il a cessé momentanément de craindre Dieu, ce qui a coûté la vie à 70 000 de ses compatriotes. Bien qu’il se soit repenti devant Jéhovah, lui et le peuple ont beaucoup souffert en la circonstance. — 2 Samuel 24:1-16
      C’est aussi parce qu’il avait oublié sa crainte de Dieu que David a couché avec Bath-Shéba, la femme d’Ouriya. David savait qu’il était mal, non seulement de commettre l’adultère, mais aussi de désirer la femme d’un autre (Exode 20:14, 17). Tout a commencé quand il a aperçu Bath-Shéba qui se baignait. La crainte de Dieu lui commandait de détourner son regard immédiatement et de maîtriser ses pensées. Mais il a manifestement ‘ continué à regarder ’, si bien que la passion l’a emporté sur sa crainte de Dieu (Matthieu 5:28 ; 2 Samuel 11:1-4). David a oublié que Jéhovah devait être présent dans tous les domaines de sa vie. — Psaume 139:1-7.
      De son adultère avec Bath-Shéba est né un fils. Peu après, Jéhovah a envoyé le prophète Nathân dénoncer le péché de David. Retrouvant la crainte de Dieu en même temps que la raison, celui-ci s’est repenti. Il a supplié Jéhovah de ne pas le rejeter et de ne pas lui retirer son esprit saint (Psaume 51:7, 11). Jéhovah lui a pardonné et a atténué le châtiment, mais il ne lui a pas épargné toutes les conséquences de ses actes. Le fils de David est mort ; les malheurs se sont succédé dans sa famille. Quel prix à payer pour avoir momentanément fait abstraction de la crainte de Dieu ! — 2 Samuel 12:10-14 ; 13:10-14 ; 15:14.
      Aujourd’hui de même, ne pas craindre Dieu dans le domaine de la moralité peut avoir des conséquences graves et durables. Imaginez la douleur de cette jeune femme qui découvre que son mari chrétien l’a trompée lors d’un déplacement professionnel à l’étranger. Choquée, anéantie par le chagrin, elle enfouit son visage dans ses mains et pleure toutes les larmes de son corps. Combien de temps faudra-t-il au mari infidèle pour regagner la confiance et le respect de sa femme ? Des situations aussi pénibles peuvent être évitées grâce à la crainte de Dieu. — 1 Corinthiens 6:18.
      Satan détruit les valeurs morales de la société humaine les unes après les autres, et il cherche particulièrement à corrompre les vrais chrétiens. Pour ce faire, il exploite le chemin le plus direct vers le cœur et l’esprit : nos sens, avec une prédilection pour l’ouïe et la vue (Éphésiens 4:17-19). Comment réagissez-vous quand, involontairement, vous vous trouvez exposé à des images ou à des paroles obscènes, ou encore en présence d’individus immoraux ?
      Voyez le cas d’André. Cet ancien et père de famille est médecin dans un pays d’Europe. Quand il était de garde de nuit à l’hôpital, des collègues féminines avaient pris l’habitude d’épingler sur son oreiller des mots doux ornés de petits cœurs pour l’inviter à coucher avec elles. André s’interdisait résolument d’accorder la moindre pensée à ces avances. Mieux, pour se soustraire à cet environnement malsain, il a changé d’établissement. Sa crainte de Dieu s’est révélée sage et lui a valu des bénédictions, puisqu’il effectue aujourd’hui une partie de ses activités au siège des Témoins de Jéhovah de son pays.
      Troquer nos précieuses relations avec Jéhovah contre quelque chose auquel nous n’avons pas droit : voilà où nous risquons d’en arriver en cultivant de mauvaises pensées (Jacques 1:14, 15). Si nous craignons Jéhovah, en revanche, nous nous tiendrons éloignés — et même nous nous écarterons délibérément — des gens, des lieux, des activités ou des divertissements qui pourraient nous faire baisser notre garde (Proverbes 22:3). Quel que soit l’inconvénient ou le sacrifice que cela implique, il n’est rien à côté de la perte de la faveur divine (Matthieu 5:29, 30). La crainte de Dieu nous commande de ne jamais nous exposer intentionnellement à quoi que ce soit d’immoral — à commencer par la pornographie sous toutes ses formes —, mais aussi de faire en sorte que nos yeux “ passent sans s’arrêter à la vue de ce qui n’est que néant ”. Soyons convaincus que Jéhovah, alors, nous ‘ gardera en vie ’ et nous donnera tout ce dont nous avons réellement besoin. — Psaume 84:11 ; 119:37.
       Assurément, c’est toujours faire preuve de sagesse que de laisser la crainte de Dieu dicter nos actions. C’est aussi la source du vrai bonheur (Psaume 34:9)

      · 3 replies
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