The Desire for Peace and Security Worldwide
1, 2. What pressing need does all mankind have, and why?
PEACE and security are what we want here on earth. The need for such a desirable situation was never more pressing than it is today. This is true not only with us as individuals but also with the entire human family around the globe.
2 That is why the present population of earth is now living in the time of all times! ‘How can this be the case,’ you may ask, ‘since we are now well along in the most frightful period of all human history, the age of nuclear weapons?’
3. (a) What is said to be the reason for the nations’ possessing the nuclear bomb? (b) What would ordinary common sense dictate?
3 At least eight nations are reported to be capable of producing the nuclear bomb. And it is estimated that 31 countries could have nuclear weapons by the year 2000. Their reason for possessing the ultimate of bombs is said to be that of protection, a deterrent to other similarly armed nations, a threat of nuclear reprisal. In the face of such a state of world affairs, ordinary common sense would dictate that the nations should agree to live side by side in mutual tolerance.
4. Though the Creator has not blocked human efforts to seek security, what purpose does he have in this regard?
4 Is it, however, a mere man-made peace that we want, together with what security man can provide? Though the Creator has not blocked human efforts to establish and maintain peace and security worldwide, he has his own perfect way for satisfying our natural desire for peace and security. He has his own appointed time for doing away with all disturbers of the security of those who desire to worship him. How glad we can be to know that his time for this is at hand!
5. What did the inspired psalmist say regarding the earth, and what is the Creator’s purpose for man?
5 After thousands of years of turbulent human history, it is to be expected that there should be an intense earth-wide desire for peace and security. Earth has been man’s natural habitat from the very start of human existence. The inspired psalmist said: “As regards the heavens, to Jehovah the heavens belong, but the earth he has given to the sons of men.” (Psalm 115:16) From the very beginning, it was the Creator’s loving purpose that man should enjoy a full life in his God-given earthly home.
6. In what respect would the first man and his offspring be able to act like God?
6 According to the creation account at Genesis 2:7, “God proceeded to form the man out of dust from the ground and to blow into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man came to be a living soul.” No other living creature on earth was on man’s plane of life or on man’s level of competence—able to act like God in the exercise of dominion. Further, this dominion was not to be confined to the first human creature but was also to be exercised and enjoyed by his offspring.
7. How did Adam come to have a wife, and what did he say when this perfect creature was presented to him?
7 For that reason, the Creator gave Adam a wife. She was to be the mother of all future human inhabitants of earth. That is why, on being presented with this perfect creature, the man could say: “This is at last bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh.” Therefore he pronounced her the female of the human kind, ’ish·shahʹ, which is the feminine form of the Hebrew word translated man, namely, ’ish.—Genesis 2:21-23.
8. What instructions did the Creator give to the first human couple?
8 The Creator and heavenly Father said to the first human couple: “Be fruitful and become many and fill the earth and subdue it.” (Genesis 1:28) This procedure was something absolutely new in the history of intelligent creation. The spiritual inhabitants of the invisible heavens were not brought into existence through procreation.
9. How does Psalm 8:4, 5 describe the divine arrangement of things?
9 It is no wonder that, at the time of earth’s creation, “the morning stars joyfully cried out together, and all the sons of God began shouting in applause.” (Job 38:7) At that time, all was peaceful and harmonious throughout the entire universe. In the eighth psalm, enraptured at the divine arrangement of things, the psalmist exclaims regarding man: “You also proceeded to make him a little less than godlike ones, and with glory and splendor you then crowned him.” (Ps 8 Verses 4, 5) According to this psalm, God put all things here on earth under man’s feet.
The Start of a Rival Sovereignty
10. (a) Before the first human child was conceived, what broke out? (b) What could thus be set up over humankind?
10 Amazingly, before the first human child was conceived, rebellion broke out in the universal organization of Jehovah God. The situation could lead to the setting up of a new sovereignty, a new superrulership, over humankind—if humankind could be separated and alienated from Jehovah’s universal organization. A sovereignty could be set up in rivalry to his. This called for the first lie to be told, presenting Jehovah God in a false light.
11. By presenting Jehovah God in a false light, what did the first rebel become?
11 The telling of the first falsehood made this first rebel against God the first liar, the first devil, or defamer. In stark contrast to him, Jesus Christ said: “I am the way and the truth and the life.” (John 14:6) To his religious opposers, Jesus said: “You are from your father the Devil, and you wish to do the desires of your father. That one was a manslayer when he began, and he did not stand fast in the truth, because truth is not in him. When he speaks the lie, he speaks according to his own disposition, because he is a liar and the father of the lie.”—John 8:44.
12. (a) How did the Devil cause the first lie to be told, and what was the effect upon Eve? (b) What resulted when Adam ate of the forbidden fruit?
12 By speaking through a serpent in the garden of Eden, or paradise of pleasure, the Devil caused the first lie to be presented to the first woman. He claimed that her Creator was a liar, thus disturbing the peace of Eve’s mind. He made her feel a sense of insecurity in her imagined state of ignorance, so she partook of the forbidden fruit. She prevailed upon her husband, Adam, to partake of the forbidden fruit with her and thus join her in her rebellion against Jehovah God. (Genesis 3:1-6) The disobedient couple lost their peace with God and were driven out of the paradise of pleasure to exist in a state of insecurity outside. Romans 5:12 describes this sorry state of affairs, saying: “Through one man sin entered into the world and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men because they had all sinned.”
13. What choice must each of us make today?
13 The situation of our day calls for us to make a definite choice. It is a choice between the rival sovereignty of Satan the Devil, “the god of this system of things,” and the sovereignty of Jehovah, the Most High and Almighty God of the universe.—2 Corinthians 4:4; Psalm 83:18.
The Way to Enjoy Peace With God
14. What peace and security can we begin to enjoy even now?
14 With painful hurt to themselves, most of mankind do not desire to accept or to believe in the Almighty God’s provision for his worshipers to enjoy relative peace and security even in this most lamentable state of human affairs. However, Jehovah is “the God who gives peace,” and it is our blessed privilege now to enter into a peace and security that will never fail. (Romans 16:20; Philippians 4:6, 7, 9) It is a peace and security that he gives even now to his body of earthly servants, his visible organization, in fulfillment of his ever-reliable promises. It is a peace and security that we can enjoy only in association with his visible organization on earth.
15. Is it unreasonable to think that God has an organization, and what did Jesus Christ recognize?
15 It would be out of line with the plain teachings of the Scriptures to believe that God does not have an organization, an organized people, that he exclusively recognizes. Jesus Christ recognized that his heavenly Father had a visible organization. Until Pentecost 33 C.E., it was the Jewish organization in covenant relationship with Jehovah God under the Law of Moses.—Luke 16:16.
16. (a) Between whom was Moses the mediator? (b) Between whom is the Greater Moses, Jesus Christ, the Mediator?
16 Just as the ancient nation of Israel was in a covenant relationship with Jehovah God through the mediator Moses, so the nation of spiritual Israel, “the Israel of God,” has a covenant relationship through a mediator. (Galatians 6:16) It is as the apostle Paul wrote to his Christian fellow worker: “There is one God, and one mediator between God and men, a man, Christ Jesus.” (1 Timothy 2:5) Was Moses the mediator between Jehovah God and mankind in general? No, he was the mediator between the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob and the nation of their fleshly descendants. Likewise, the Greater Moses, Jesus Christ, is not the Mediator between Jehovah God and all mankind. He is the Mediator between his heavenly Father, Jehovah God, and the nation of spiritual Israel, which is limited to only 144,000 members. This spiritual nation is like a little flock of Jehovah’s sheeplike ones.—Romans 9:6; Revelation 7:4.
Shepherd Over More Than the “Little Flock”
17. (a) What has Jehovah God assigned Jesus Christ to be? (b) What did Jesus say to those who are to inherit the heavenly Kingdom?
17 In Psalm 23:1, King David of ancient Israel was inspired to say: “Jehovah is my Shepherd. I shall lack nothing.” Jehovah, the Supreme Shepherd, has assigned Jesus Christ to be “the fine shepherd.” (John 10:11) At Luke 12:32, Jesus addressed himself to those of whom he is the Fine Shepherd: “Have no fear, little flock, because your Father has approved of giving you the kingdom.”
18. (a) Who today correspond to the Nethinim and the sons of non-Israelite servants of Solomon? (b) With whom are they closely associated?
18 In ancient times, there were non-Jews, such as the Nethinim and the sons of non-Israelite servants of Solomon, who were associated with the nation of Israel. (Ezra 2:43-58; 8:17-20) Similarly today, there are men and women who are wholly dedicated to God through Jesus Christ but who are not spiritual Israelites. They are, however, associated with the remnant of spiritual Israel because of dedicating themselves to Jehovah God through Jesus Christ, “who gave himself a corresponding ransom for all.” (1 Timothy 2:6) Today, these far outnumber the 144,000 spiritual Israelites, who are to inherit the heavenly Kingdom.
19. What did Jesus Christ say to indicate that he would be the Shepherd over more than the “little flock”?
19 Thus Jesus Christ was to be assigned, in God’s due time, to be the Shepherd over a much larger flock of sheeplike ones who would come into an earthly inheritance through him. These are the ones whom he had in mind when he said: “I have other sheep, which are not of this fold; those also I must bring, and they will listen to my voice, and they will become one flock, one shepherd.” Having in mind these “other sheep,” the apostle John also wrote of Jesus: “He is a propitiatory sacrifice for our sins, yet not for ours only but also for the whole world’s.”—John 10:16; 1 John 2:2.
20. (a) How does the number of the “other sheep” compare with that of the remaining ones of the “little flock”? (b) What does the pastoral care of the Fine Shepherd mean for all of them?
20 Today, there are about 9,000 who profess to be members of the remnant of the “little flock” of spiritual sheep. On the other hand, there are millions of dedicated ones who are associated with the anointed remnant in following in the footsteps of the Fine Shepherd, Jesus Christ. They are to be found in over 200 lands around the globe. What does the pastoral care of that Fine Shepherd mean for all of them? It means the enjoyment of peace and security! If they did not have peace in their ranks, there would not be heartfelt unity and unbreakable cooperation among them. If they did not have mutual loving concern for one another as respects spiritual interests, they would not have the security that they enjoy. Thus, their desire for peace and security earth wide has begun to be satisfied even now.
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The Creator has his own perfect way for satisfying human desire for peace and security