Hold on to discipline; do not let it go. Safeguard it, for it means your life.—Prov. 4:13.
While discipline may be painful, there is something that is even more painful—the harm that may result from rejecting discipline. (Heb. 12:11) Consider the example of Cain. When Cain developed a murderous hatred toward Abel, God admonished Cain: “Why are you so angry and dejected? If you turn to doing good, will you not be restored to favor? But if you do not turn to doing good, sin is crouching at the door, and its craving is to dominate you; but will you get the mastery over it?” (Gen. 4:6, 7) Cain did not listen. Then sin overwhelmed him. What needless pain and suffering Cain brought on himself! (Gen. 4:11, 12) The pain of Jehovah’s reprimand would have been mild by comparison. How Jehovah wants to spare us from such needless suffering! (Isa. 48:17, 18) So let us “listen to discipline and become wise.”—Prov. 8:33. w18.03 32 ¶18-20
I, Daniel, discerned by the books the number of years.—Dan. 9:2.
How did Daniel come to know Jehovah? He was evidently well-instructed by his parents, who taught him to love Jehovah and his written Word. Moreover, that love stayed with Daniel all his life. Even in his old age, we find him poring over the Scriptures. Daniel’s intimate knowledge of God, including God’s dealings with Israel, is beautifully reflected in the prophet’s heartfelt and contrite prayer recorded at Daniel 9:3-19. Why not take a few moments to read that prayer and meditate on it? For a faithful Jew, life in pagan Babylon presented big challenges. For instance, Jehovah told the Jews: “Seek the peace of the city to which I have exiled you.” (Jer. 29:7) Yet, at the same time, he required their exclusive devotion. (Ex. 34:14) What enabled Daniel to balance the two requirements? Godly wisdom helped him to grasp the principle of relative subjection to secular authorities. Centuries later, Jesus taught the very same principle.—Luke 20:25. w18.02 10 ¶11-12
Put a mark on the foreheads of the men.—Ezek. 9:4.
Are you dealing with trials, such as ill health, financial problems, or persecution? Do you at times find it hard to maintain your joy in Jehovah’s service? If so, take courage from the examples of Noah, Daniel, and Job. They were imperfect, and they faced many of the challenges we face, including some that were life threatening. Yet, they held on to their integrity, becoming models of faith and obedience in the eyes of God. (Ezek. 14:12-14) Ezekiel wrote the words of our text in Babylonia in 612 B.C.E. (Ezek. 1:1; 8:1) Apostate Jerusalem was nearing its foretold destruction, which occurred in 607 B.C.E. Only relatively few individuals reflected the qualities of Noah, Daniel, and Job and were thus marked for survival. (Ezek. 9:1-5) Likewise today, only those whom Jehovah considers blameless like them will be marked for survival when the present system of things comes to an end.—Rev. 7:9, 14. w18.02 3-4 ¶1-3
Remember . . . your Grand Creator in the days of your youth.—Eccl. 12:1.
As a youth, ask yourself: ‘Am I participating in spiritual activities just because my parents expect me to? Am I drawing closer to God by nurturing a personal relationship with him?’ Of course, the counsel to have spiritual goals applies not just to youths. Having such goals will help all of us as Jehovah’s servants to deepen our spirituality. (Eccl. 12:13) Once we have identified areas for improvement, we need to take positive steps that will help us move forward. Becoming a spiritual person is very important. In fact, it is a life-and-death matter. (Rom. 8:6-8) However, for us to be spiritually mature does not mean to be perfect. Jehovah’s spirit can help us to make the needed progress. Still, we do need to put forth effort. Although Bible study can be enjoyable, we should not expect the Bible to read like a novel that is written just to entertain. We need to work at finding spiritual gems that will help us. w18.02 25 ¶10-11
Why are you delaying? Rise, get baptized.—Acts 22:16.
An exhaustive knowledge is not required before a person can make a dedication to God and get baptized. After baptism, all disciples should keep on growing in accurate knowledge. (Col. 1:9, 10) So how much knowledge is initially required? The experience of a family in the first century offers us some insight. (Acts 16:25-33) While on his second missionary tour, about 50 C.E., Paul visited Philippi. While there, he and his companion Silas were arrested on false charges and thrown in jail. During the night, an earthquake shook the foundations of the jail and opened all the doors. The jailer, fearing that the prisoners had escaped, was on the verge of committing suicide when Paul called out to him. Paul and Silas were able to give a fine witness to the jailer and his family. Their appreciation for the truths they were learning about Jesus prompted them to take what step? They got baptized without delay. w18.03 10 ¶7-8
Happy is the people whose God is Jehovah!—Ps. 144:15.
Jehovah is a happy God, and his people reflect that quality. Furthermore, unlike those who are lovers of themselves and who are interested only in receiving, Jehovah’s servants find delight in giving of themselves for the welfare of others. (Acts 20:35; 2 Tim. 3:2) How can we determine if our love of God is being eclipsed by love of self? Consider the admonition found at Philippians 2:3, 4: “Do nothing out of contentiousness or out of egotism, but with humility consider others superior to you, as you look out not only for your own interests, but also for the interests of others.” We might ask ourselves: ‘Do I apply that counsel in my life? Do I reach out to help others, both in the congregation and in the field ministry?’ Giving of ourselves is not always easy. It requires effort and self-sacrifice. But what could make us happier than knowing that we have the approval of the Sovereign of the universe? w18.01 23 ¶6-7
Keep testing whether you are in the faith.—2 Cor. 13:5.
To do that, we do well to ask ourselves: ‘Do I really believe that I am part of the only organization that Jehovah has approved to accomplish his will? Am I doing my utmost to preach and teach the good news of the Kingdom? Do my actions show that I truly believe that these are the last days and that the end of Satan’s rule is near? Do I have the same confidence in Jehovah and Jesus now that I had when I dedicated my life to Jehovah God?’ (Matt. 24:14; 2 Tim. 3:1; Heb. 3:14) Pondering the answers to such questions will help us to keep proving what we ourselves are. Read and meditate on Scriptural material that discusses the significance of the Memorial. (John 3:16; 17:3) The only path to everlasting life involves “coming to know” Jehovah and “exercising faith” in Jesus, His only-begotten Son. To prepare for the Memorial, why not choose some study projects that will help you to draw closer to Jehovah and Jesus? w18.01 13 ¶5-6
No man can come to me unless the Father, who sent me, draws him.—John 6:44.
When you read the Bible and our publications and when you attend Christian meetings, you hear encouraging experiences of how God has helped others to stay faithful. But as you grow spiritually, you need to see Jehovah’s hand in your own life. How have you personally tasted Jehovah’s goodness? There is one way that all Christians have tasted Jehovah’s goodness. It is by being invited to draw close to God and his Son. A youth might reason, ‘Jehovah drew my parents, and I merely followed.’ But when you dedicated yourself to Jehovah and got baptized, you showed that you had come into a privileged relationship with him. Now you are truly known by him. The Bible assures us: “If anyone loves God, this one is known by him.” (1 Cor. 8:3) Try always to treasure, to appreciate, your place in Jehovah’s organization. w17.12 26 ¶12-13
Those whom Jehovah loves he disciplines.—Heb. 12:6.
The word “discipline” may make you think of punishment, but much more is involved. In the Bible, discipline is often presented in an appealing light, at times alongside knowledge, wisdom, love, and life. (Prov. 1:2-7; 4:11-13) That is because God’s discipline is an expression of his love for us and of his desire that we gain everlasting life. (Heb. 12:6) While his discipline may include chastisement, it is never abusive or cruel. Indeed, the meaning behind “discipline” primarily relates to education, such as that involved in raising a beloved child. As members of the Christian congregation, we are part of God’s household. (1 Tim. 3:15) We therefore respect Jehovah’s right both to set standards and to give loving discipline when we violate them. Moreover, if our actions caused unpleasant consequences, his discipline would remind us of just how important it is to listen to our heavenly Father.—Gal. 6:7. w18.03 23 ¶1; 24 ¶3
A man of knowledge restrains his words, and a discerning man will remain calm.—Prov. 17:27.
What if you are a teenager and feel misunderstood and restricted by your Christian parents? Your frustration might even make you doubt that serving Jehovah is the best way of life. But if you allow frustration to make you give up serving Jehovah, you would soon discover that no one else cares for you more genuinely than your God-fearing parents and your congregation. If your parents never corrected you, would you not wonder if they really cared about you? (Heb. 12:8) But perhaps it is the way your parents discipline you that upsets you. Rather than fret over the manner of discipline, try to recognize that there may be a reason for the way they act. So keep calm and do your best to avoid overreacting to criticism. Make it your goal to become a mature person who can take counsel calmly and benefit from it without worrying excessively about how it was given.—Prov. 1:8. w17.11 29 ¶16-17
You have left the love you had at first.—Rev. 2:4.
Perhaps you have seen some youths get baptized but later question the wisdom of living by God’s standards. A number have even left the way of the truth. Hence, you might worry that your child will start out on the Christian course but then change and lose that original love of the truth. How can you try to avoid such an outcome and help your child to “grow to salvation”? (1 Pet. 2:2) The answer lies in what Paul wrote to Timothy: “Continue in the things that you learned and were persuaded to believe, knowing from whom you learned them and that from infancy you have known the holy writings [the Hebrew Scriptures], which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus.” (2 Tim. 3:14, 15) Note that Paul mentions (1) knowing the holy writings, (2) being persuaded to believe the things learned, and (3) becoming wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. w17.12 18-19 ¶2-3
My servants will shout joyfully because of the good condition of the heart, but you will cry out because of the pain of heart.—Isa. 65:14.
Many religions turn people away from God by teaching hellfire, collecting tithes, or preaching politics. No wonder an increasing number of people feel that they can be happy without religion! Certainly an individual can be happy without false religion, but a person cannot be truly happy unless he has a relationship with Jehovah, who is described as “the happy God.” (1 Tim. 1:11) Everything God does benefits others. His servants are happy because they focus on helping others. (Acts 20:35) For example, consider how true worship promotes family happiness. True worship teaches us to honor and respect our spouse, to treat marriage vows as sacred, to avoid adultery, to raise respectful children, and to practice true love. As a result, such worship unites people in happy congregations and a happy worldwide brotherhood. w17.11 21 ¶6-7
Miserable man that I am!—Rom. 7:24.
Many of God’s faithful servants have echoed those words of the apostle Paul. We all suffer from inherited sin, and when our actions do not reflect our keen desire to please Jehovah, we may feel miserable. Some Christians who have committed a serious sin have even felt that they are beyond God’s forgiveness. Nevertheless, the Scriptures assure us that those who take refuge in Jehovah do not need to feel overwhelmed by guilt. (Ps. 34:22) After Paul expressed his misery for failing to obey Jehovah perfectly, he exclaimed: “Thanks to God through Jesus Christ our Lord!” (Rom. 7:25) Yes, despite his struggle with sin and his past wrongdoing—for which he had repented—Paul was confident in God’s forgiveness through Jesus. As our Ransomer, Jesus cleanses our consciences and gives us inner peace. (Heb. 9:13, 14) As our High Priest, “he is able also to save completely those who are approaching God through him, because he is always alive to plead for them.”—Heb. 7:24, 25. w17.11 8 ¶1-2; 12 ¶15
Make your vows to Jehovah your God and pay them.—Ps. 76:11.
How can we prove true to our dedication vow? Our stand during tests both large and small should show that we take seriously our pledge to praise Jehovah “day after day.” (Ps. 61:8) For example, when someone on the job or at school flirts with us, do we see this as an opportunity to “take pleasure in [Jehovah’s] ways” by rejecting such advances? (Prov. 23:26) If we live in a divided household, do we ask Jehovah for his help to maintain the Christian personality even when no one else around us is making such an effort? Do we daily approach our loving heavenly Father in prayer, thanking him for bringing us under his rulership and for loving us? Are we making time to read the Bible daily? Did we not, in effect, promise that we would do such things? It is a matter of obedience. Our full share in worship reveals that we love Jehovah and are truly dedicated to him. Our worship is a way of life, not a mere formality. w17.10 23 ¶11-12
It is good to sing praises to our God.—Ps. 147:1.
A popular lyricist once said: “Words make you think thoughts. Music makes you feel a feeling. But a song makes you feel a thought.” What better thoughts could we “feel” than those that express praise and love for our heavenly Father, Jehovah? It is no wonder that singing is a prominent aspect of pure worship, whether we are alone when we sing or we are with the congregation of God’s people. How, though, do you feel about singing aloud with the congregation? Do you find it embarrassing? In some cultures, men may feel uncomfortable singing in public. This view can affect the whole congregation, especially if those taking the lead find reasons to hold back or to engage in other activities while the rest of the congregation is singing. (Ps. 30:12) If we truly consider singing as part of our worship, we certainly will not want to walk out on or be absent from that part of the meeting program. w17.11 3 ¶1-3
Do not think I came to bring peace to the earth; I came to bring, not peace, but a sword.—Matt. 10:34.
We all want peaceful lives, free from anxiety. How thankful we are that Jehovah grants us “the peace of God,” an inner calm that can protect us from disturbing thoughts and feelings! (Phil. 4:6, 7) Because of our dedication to Jehovah, we also enjoy “peace with God,” a good relationship with him. (Rom. 5:1) However, God’s time to bring about complete peace has not yet come. These critical last days are filled with conflict, and countless people have contentious attitudes. (2 Tim. 3:1-4) As Christians, we must wage a spiritual war against Satan and the false teachings that he promotes. (2 Cor. 10:4, 5) But the greatest threat to our peace may come from unbelieving relatives. Some might ridicule our beliefs, accuse us of dividing the family, or threaten to disown us unless we give up our faith. w17.10 12 ¶1-2
How I do love your law! I ponder over it all day long.—Ps. 119:97.
The reality that languages change over time also applies to the languages into which the Bible has been translated. A Bible translation that was easily understood when first produced may later become less effective. Consider an example involving a Bible translation into English. The King James Version was first produced in 1611. It became one of the most popular English Bibles, and it would come to have a significant impact on the English language. Even so, much of the wording in the King James Version became archaic over the centuries. The same is true of early Bible translations in other languages. Are we not grateful, then, to have the modern-language New World Translation of the Holy Scriptures? This translation is available in whole or in part in over 150 languages, thus being available to a vast part of the population today. Its clear wording allows the message of God’s Word to reach our heart. w17.09 19 ¶5-6
Be wise, my son, and make my heart rejoice.—Prov. 27:11.
Christian youths have important decisions to make. The wise decisions they make about good associations, wholesome entertainment, moral cleanness, and baptism all call for courage. That is because such young ones are going against the will of Satan, the one who taunts God. One important decision young ones must make involves their goals. In some lands, young ones are pressured to set goals that center on higher education and a well-paying job. In other lands, economic conditions may make young ones feel that they must focus on helping to provide materially for their families. Jehovah will bless young ones who courageously work at setting spiritual goals and putting Kingdom interests first in their lives. He will help them provide for the needs of their families. In the first century, the young man Timothy focused on spiritual goals, and you can too.—Phil. 2:19-22. w17.09 29-30 ¶10-12
This book of the Law should not depart from your mouth . . . Observe carefully all that is written in it; for then your way will be successful and then you will act wisely.—Josh. 1:8.
Diligent and conscientious Bible study can help Christians to develop self-control. How so? The Scriptures contain accounts that vividly illustrate both the benefits and the consequences of our actions. Jehovah had these accounts recorded for a purpose. (Rom. 15:4) How wise it is to read them, meditate on them, and study them! Try to grasp how they apply to you and your family. Ask Jehovah to help you to apply his Word. If you discern that you are deficient in some aspect of self-control, admit it. Then pray about it, and strive to see how you can improve. (Jas. 1:5) No doubt, research in our Christian publications can help you to locate relevant material that will further help you. w17.09 6 ¶15-16
Clothe yourselves with the new personality.—Col. 3:10.
“The new personality” refers to a personality that is “created according to God’s will.” (Eph. 4:24) Developing such a new personality is within our reach. Why? Because Jehovah created humans in his image and thus made it possible for us to reflect his beautiful qualities. (Gen. 1:26, 27; Eph. 5:1) After exhorting us to put on the new personality, Paul goes on to describe impartiality as one striking characteristic of the new personality. He stated: “There is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcision nor uncircumcision, foreigner, Scythian, slave, or freeman.” In the congregation, why should there be no distinction based on race, nationality, or social status? Because true followers of Christ “are all one.” (Col. 3:11; Gal. 3:28) Those clothed with the new personality treat fellow believers and outsiders with dignity, regardless of their social or racial background.—Rom. 2:11. w17.08 22 ¶1; 23 ¶3-4
Jehovah is waiting patiently.—Isa. 30:18.
Jehovah does not expect us to do something that he is not willing to do himself. He has set the supreme example of being willing to wait. (2 Pet. 3:9) Jehovah has been waiting patiently for thousands of years so that the moral issues raised in the garden of Eden could eventually be settled beyond a doubt. He is “waiting patiently” and “keeping in expectation” of the time when his name will be fully sanctified. This will result in unimaginable blessings for those who are “eagerly waiting for him.” (Isa. 30:18; ftn.) Jesus likewise has been willing to wait. Although he passed the test of integrity here on earth and presented the value of his ransom sacrifice in 33 C.E., he had to wait until 1914 before commencing his rule. (Acts 2:33-35; Heb. 10:12, 13) It will not be until the end of his Thousand Year Reign that all his enemies will be completely destroyed. (1 Cor. 15:25) But we can be sure that the wait will be worth it. w17.08 7 ¶16-17
God . . . comforts us in all our trials.—2 Cor. 1:3, 4.
“For almost a year after the death of our son, we felt deep and excruciating pain,” said Susi. Another Christian said that when his wife died suddenly, he experienced “indescribable physical pain.” Sadly, countless others experience this kind of agony. Many in the Christian congregation may not have expected their loved ones to die this side of Armageddon. Whether you have personally lost a loved one in death or know someone who is bereaved, you may wonder, ‘How can grieving ones be helped to deal with their heartache?’ Perhaps you have heard it said that time is a great healer. However, does it really follow that time by itself will heal a broken heart? One widow observed, “I have found it more accurate to say that it is what one does with one’s time that helps one to heal.” Yes, like a physical wound, the pain of an emotional wound may gradually ease over time if it is given tender care. w17.07 12-13 ¶1-3
Find exquisite delight in Jehovah, and he will grant you the desires of your heart.—Ps. 37:4.
What plans does Jehovah recommend for you? He created humans to find happiness by knowing him and by serving him faithfully. (Ps. 128:1; Matt. 5:3) This is in sharp contrast with the animals he created, which are content merely to eat, drink, and produce offspring. God wants you to find happiness by planning for things other than those that satisfy animals. Your Creator is “the God of love,” “the happy God,” who made humans “in his image.” (2 Cor. 13:11; 1 Tim. 1:11; Gen. 1:27) You will be happy when you imitate our loving God. Have you ever experienced the truth of the scripture that says: “There is more happiness in giving than there is in receiving”? (Acts 20:35) That is a basic truth about human life. Therefore, Jehovah desires that your plans focus on demonstrating love for others and for God.—Matt. 22:36-39. w17.07 23 ¶3
Jehovah will not hold back anything good from those walking in integrity.—Ps. 84:11.
God treats his human servants with dignity and respect. He cares for us better than we can care for ourselves. Jehovah’s concern extends beyond the welfare of his people as a whole. He also shows keen interest in each individual. Consider, for example, the three centuries during which Jehovah was raising up and empowering judges to deliver the nation of Israel from their oppressors. During that turbulent period, he did not fail to notice one non-Israelite named Ruth. At considerable sacrifice, she converted to true worship. Jehovah blessed Ruth with a husband and a son. But that is not all. When she is resurrected, Ruth will learn that her son was part of the line that led to the Messiah. And imagine how moved she will be to discover that her life story was preserved in a Bible book bearing her name!—Ruth 4:13; Matt. 1:5, 16. w17.06 28-29 ¶8-9
The holy spirit . . . will . . . bring back to your minds all the things I told you.—John 14:26.
In 1970, a brother named Peter was 19 years old and had recently begun serving at Bethel in Britain. While preaching from door to door, he met a bearded middle-aged man. Peter asked the man if he would like to understand the Bible. Somewhat shocked, the man responded that this was a house of Jewish rabbis. To test Peter, the rabbi asked, “So, my boy, what language was the book of Daniel written in?” Peter replied, “Part of it was written in Aramaic.” “The rabbi,” Peter recalls, “was surprised that I knew the answer—but not as surprised as I was! How did I know the answer? When I went home and checked the Watchtower and Awake! magazines from the previous months, I found an article explaining that Daniel was written in Aramaic.” (Dan. 2:4, ftn.) Yes, the holy spirit can bring back to our mind thoughts we previously read.—Luke 12:11, 12; 21:13-15. w17.06 13 ¶17
Those who [marry] will have tribulation in their flesh.—1 Cor. 7:28.
New anxieties often surface after a wife announces to her husband, “We are going to have a baby.” Usually, a couple’s joy over their prospective child is tinged with some apprehension about medical issues that may arise during the pregnancy or later. And there will be an economic impact to consider, both immediate and long-term. More adjustments become necessary when the baby arrives. The new mother’s time and attention may be focused on caring for her child. Many a husband has felt left out because his wife is occupied with her duties toward their baby. On the other hand, a new father has new responsibilities to shoulder. His duties increase because he has a new family member to care for and provide for. A different sort of tribulation confronts some married couples. They desperately want children but remain childless. When the wife does not become pregnant, she may feel much emotional distress. w17.06 4 ¶1; 5 ¶5-6
How sweet your sayings are to my palate, more so than honey to my mouth!—Ps. 119:103.
As Christians, we cherish and embrace truth. God’s Word is the ultimate source of truth. In prayer to his Father, Jesus said: “Your word is truth.” (John 17:17) Therefore, love for truth starts with gaining an accurate knowledge of God’s Word. (Col. 1:10) However, more is involved than simply acquiring head knowledge. Note how the inspired writer of Psalm 119 helps us to understand what it means to love Bible truth. (Ps. 119:97-100) Do we take the time to ponder, or dwell on, Scriptural passages throughout the day? Our appreciation for Bible truth will grow when we meditate on ways we benefit from applying it in our lives. Also, we can savor the tasty Bible-based spiritual food that we receive from God’s organization. We can allow it to linger on our figurative palate so that we can recall the “delightful words” of truth and use them to help others.—Eccl. 12:10. w17.05 19-20 ¶11-12
God is really among you.—1 Cor. 14:25.
We want to help suffering people, including those who are not Witnesses. (Luke 10:33-37) The best way to do so is by sharing the good news with them. “It is important to make clear right away that we are Jehovah’s Witnesses and that our primary mission is to help them spiritually, not materially,” notes an elder who has helped many refugees. “Otherwise, some may associate with us only for personal advantage.” Showing Christian love to “foreign residents” brings good results. (Ps. 146:9) A Christian sister related that her family fled the persecution in Eritrea. After four of her children made an exhausting eight-day journey across the desert, they arrived in Sudan. She said: “The brothers there treated them like close relatives, providing food, clothes, shelter, and transportation. Who else would welcome strangers into their home just because they worship the same God? Only Jehovah’s Witnesses!”—John 13:35. w17.05 7 ¶17, 19-20
You have not spoken the truth about me as my servant Job has.—Job 42:8.
“Can a man be of use to God? Can anyone with insight be of benefit to him? Does the Almighty care that you are righteous, or does he gain anything because you follow the course of integrity?” (Job 22:1-3) Have you ever wondered about the answers to questions such as these? When Eliphaz the Temanite first posed them to Job, Eliphaz no doubt believed that the answer was no. His associate, Bildad the Shuhite, even argued that a righteous standing before God is not possible for humans. (Job 25:4) These false comforters claimed that our efforts to serve Jehovah loyally are of no benefit to him at all, that our value to God is no more than that of a moth, a maggot, or a worm. (Job 4:19; 25:6) Jehovah made his feelings known when he reproved Eliphaz, Bildad, and Zophar for speaking falsehood but took delight in Job, referring to him as “my servant.” (Job 42:7) Thus, a person can indeed “be of use to God.” w17.04 28 ¶1-2
They will find exquisite delight in the abundance of peace.—Ps. 37:11.
We have lived in this old world so long that we may have stopped noticing how much stress we feel over world conditions. Similarly, people who live near a busy train station may no longer notice the noise, and those who live near a garbage dump may no longer notice the smell. Ah, but take away all those negative factors—what relief! What will replace the stresses we feel now? Note the promise found in today’s text. Do not those words touch your heart? That is what Jehovah wants for you. By all means, then, do everything in your power to stay close to Jehovah God and his organization during these stressful last days! Cherish your hope, ponder over it, make it real in your mind and heart—and share it generously with others! (1 Tim. 4:15, 16; 1 Pet. 3:15) That way, you can be sure that you will not pass away with this condemned old world. On the contrary, you will remain—alive and joyful—for all eternity! w17.04 13 ¶16-17
We all make mistakes many times.—Jas. 3:2, ftn.
We may readily acknowledge this fact, but the challenge is when we are personally affected by the imperfections of a brother. In such a situation, will we reflect Jehovah’s view of justice? For example, how will you respond if an elder makes a remark that hints at a degree of prejudice? Will you allow yourself to be stumbled if an elder thoughtlessly makes a statement that offends or hurts you? Rather than quickly concluding that the brother no longer qualifies as an elder, will you patiently wait on Jesus, the head of the congregation? Will you put forth the effort to see the bigger picture, perhaps reflecting on the brother’s many years of faithful service? If a brother who sins against you continues to serve as an elder or even receives additional privileges, will you rejoice with him? Your willingness to forgive may well reflect Jehovah’s view of justice.—Matt. 6:14, 15. w17.04 27 ¶18