Definition: An association or society of persons whose efforts are coordinated for a particular work or purpose. Members of an organization are united by administrative arrangements and by standards or requirements. Persons who are dedicated and baptized witnesses of Jehovah come into Jehovah’s organization as a result of personal choice, not by birth nor by any compulsion. They have been drawn to his earthly organization because of its teachings and practices and because they want to share in the work that it is doing.
Does Jehovah really have an organization here on earth?
To answer that question, consider the following:
Are God’s heavenly creatures, the angels, organized?
Dan. 7:9, 10: “I kept on beholding until there were thrones placed and the Ancient of Days sat down. His clothing was white just like snow, and the hair of his head was like clean wool. His throne was flames of fire; its wheels were a burning fire. There was a stream of fire flowing and going out from before him. There were a thousand thousands that kept ministering to him, and ten thousand times ten thousand that kept standing right before him. The Court took its seat, and there were books that were opened.”
Ps. 103:20, 21: “Bless Jehovah, O you angels of his, mighty in power, carrying out his word, by listening to the voice of his word. Bless Jehovah, all you armies of his, you ministers of his, doing his will.” (An “army” is an organized group.)
How did God convey instructions to his servants on earth in times past?
When worshipers of Jehovah were few in number, he gave directions to family heads such as Noah and Abraham, and they then acted as Jehovah’s spokesmen to their families. (Gen. 7:1, 7; 12:1-5) When Jehovah delivered the Israelites from Egypt, he gave them directions through Moses. (Ex. 3:10) At Mount Sinai, God organized the people into a nation, providing laws and regulations to govern their worship and their relations with one another. (Ex. 24:12) He established a priesthood to take the lead in matters of worship and to instruct the people in Jehovah’s requirements; at times he also raised up prophets to deliver needed exhortation and warning to the people. (Deut. 33:8, 10; Jer. 7:24, 25) Thus, although Jehovah listened to the prayers of individual worshipers, he provided instruction for them through an organizational arrangement.
As the time neared for Jehovah to begin to unify true worshipers with himself by means of Jesus Christ, God sent him to earth to act as His spokesman. (Heb. 1:1, 2) Then with the outpouring of holy spirit at Pentecost of 33 C.E., the Christian congregation was brought into existence. After Jesus had returned to heaven, this congregation became Jehovah’s arrangement for instructing and for coordinating the efforts of individual Christians. There were overseers to take the lead in local congregations, and a central governing body made necessary decisions and helped to coordinate activity. Clearly, Jehovah had brought into existence an organization on earth made up of true Christians.—Acts 14:23; 16:4, 5; Gal. 2:7-10.
Do Jehovah’s works of physical creation indicate that he is a God of organization?
Isa. 40:26: “Raise your eyes high up and see. Who has created these things? It is the One who is bringing forth the army of them even by number, all of whom he calls even by name. Due to the abundance of dynamic energy, he also being vigorous in power, not one of them is missing.” (The stars are grouped into galaxies and move in relation to one another, even though the characteristics of the individual stars differ. The planets move with precision timing, in assigned orbits. The electrons found in every atom of every element also have orbits. And the structure of all matter follows mathematical patterns that are so consistent that it was possible for scientists to predict the existence of certain elements before they actually discovered them. All of this gives evidence of extraordinary organization.)
Does the Bible show that true Christians would be an organized people?
Matt. 24:14; 28:19, 20: “This good news of the kingdom will be preached in all the inhabited earth for a witness to all the nations; and then the end will come.” “Go therefore and make disciples of people of all the nations, baptizing them . . . teaching them.” (How would this be accomplished without organization? When Jesus trained his early disciples for this work, He did not simply tell each one to go wherever he desired and to share his faith in whatever way he chose. He trained them, gave them instructions and sent them out in an organized manner. See Luke 8:1; 9:1-6; 10:1-16.)
Heb. 10:24, 25: “Let us consider one another to incite to love and fine works, not forsaking the gathering of ourselves together, as some have the custom, but encouraging one another, and all the more so as you behold the day drawing near.” (But to where would a person direct interested ones so they could obey this command if there were no organization with regular meetings where they could gather?)
1 Cor. 14:33, 40: “God is a God, not of disorder, but of peace. . . . Let all things take place decently and by arrangement.” (The apostle Paul is here discussing orderly procedure at congregation meetings. Applying this inspired counsel requires respect for organization.)
1 Pet. 2:9, 17: “But you are ‘a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for special possession, that you should declare abroad the excellencies’ of the one that called you out of darkness into his wonderful light. . . . Have love for the whole association of brothers.” (An association of people whose efforts are directed to accomplish a particular work is an organization.)
Are those who are faithful servants of God simply individuals who are scattered in the various churches of Christendom?
2 Cor. 6:15-18: “What portion does a faithful person have with an unbeliever? . . . ‘Therefore get out from among them, and separate yourselves,’ says Jehovah, ‘and quit touching the unclean thing’; ‘and I will take you in.’ ‘And I shall be a father to you, and you will be sons and daughters to me,’ says Jehovah the Almighty.” (Is a person really a faithful servant of God if he continues to share in worship with those who show by their way of life that they really are unbelievers? See the main heading “Babylon the Great.”)
1 Cor. 1:10: “Now I exhort you, brothers, through the name of our Lord Jesus Christ that you should all speak in agreement, and that there should not be divisions among you, but that you may be fitly united in the same mind and in the same line of thought.” (Such unity does not exist among the varied churches of Christendom.)
John 10:16: “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.” (Since Jesus would bring such ones into “one flock,” is it not obvious that they could not be scattered in Christendom’s religions?)
How can Jehovah’s visible organization in our day be identified?
(2) It fully recognizes the vital role of Jesus Christ in Jehovah’s purpose—as the vindicator of Jehovah’s sovereignty, the Chief Agent of life, the head of the Christian congregation, the ruling Messianic King.—Rev. 19:11-13; 12:10; Acts 5:31; Eph. 1:22, 23.
(3) It adheres closely to God’s inspired Word, basing all its teachings and standards of conduct on the Bible.—2 Tim. 3:16, 17.
(6) It devotes its principal efforts to doing the work that the Bible foretold for our day, namely, the preaching of the good news of God’s Kingdom in all the world for a witness.—Matt. 24:14.
(7) Despite human imperfections, its members cultivate and produce the fruits of God’s spirit—love, joy, peace, long-suffering, kindness, goodness, faith, mildness, self-control—doing so to such a degree that it sets them apart from the world in general.—Gal. 5:22, 23; John 13:35.
How can we show respect for Jehovah’s organization?
1 Cor. 10:31: “Do all things for God’s glory.”
Heb. 13:17: “Be obedient to those who are taking the lead among you and be submissive, for they are keeping watch over your souls as those who will render an account.”
Jas. 1:22: “Become doers of the word, and not hearers only.”
Titus 2:11, 12: “The undeserved kindness of God which brings salvation to all sorts of men has been manifested, instructing us to repudiate ungodliness and worldly desires and to live with soundness of mind and righteousness and godly devotion.”
1 Pet. 2:17: “Have love for the whole association of brothers.”