From Our Readers

Ancient Manuscripts—How Are They Dated? (February 2008)  This article upset me. It is my understanding that C.E. stands for “Common Era” and B.C.E. stands for “Before the Common Era.” In all of my 70 years, I have seen the terms B.C. and A.D. used as a time reference, referring to before and after the birth of Jesus. It seems to me that using B.C.E. or C.E. somehow denies the birth of Jesus.

R. W., United States

“Awake!” responds: Although A.D. (Anno Domini, meaning “in the year of our Lord”) and B.C. (before Christ) are used in lands where professed Christianity predominates, we have chosen to use the terms C.E. (Common Era) and B.C.E. (Before the Common Era). Why? First, there is considerable evidence pointing to the year 2 B.C.E. as the date of Jesus’ birth. Second, the literature printed by Jehovah’s Witnesses is widely distributed in languages read by many non-Christians. Third, the title “Christ” means “Anointed One.” Jesus became the Messiah, or Christ, when he was anointed with God’s spirit at the time he was baptized in 29 C.E. (Matthew 3:13-17) Thus, Jesus was not born Christ; he became Christ the year of his baptism. Significantly, the descriptions C.E. and B.C.E. are growing in usage, and they appear in almost all modern dictionaries and in many scholarly works. Please be assured that Jehovah’s Witnesses consider Jesus and his sacrifice indispensable to the outworking of God’s purposes and our personal salvation.

Young People Ask . . . How Can I Cope if I’m Not Well? (February 2008)  I cannot tell you how much I appreciate receiving this article at just the right time! I fell sick and had to be hospitalized for three weeks. I had just come out of the hospital when I received the magazine. I could relate in many ways to the young ones mentioned in the article. Thank you for the examples provided and for the counsel given.

K. P., Canada

My heart was touched by the fact that Jehovah God gives comfort, even to those who are disabled like me. When I was very little, I was diagnosed with cerebral palsy. Although I can’t walk, I am auxiliary pioneering. I look forward to the time when, in the coming Paradise earth, all those living with disabilities “will climb up just as a stag does.”—Isaiah 35:5, 6.

J. J., Republic of Korea

I read this article again and again. I couldn’t help but cry, feeling Jehovah’s warm thoughts. It was as if he wrapped us up in a warm blanket so that we wouldn’t be harmed in any way. Thank you very much.

M. T., Japan

Death—Is It Really the End? (December 2007)  I had lost my mother in death a few months before, and the explanation in this series, especially the promises about the resurrection, really touched my heart. Thank you very much. It gave me real comfort and encouragement.

M. R., Madagascar