Maturity Brings Happiness
1. Why and how does a baby enjoy getting older?
A BABY enjoys getting older. New fields are invaded by the child’s mind. When a youngster is but a baby its field of exploration is the crib or its mother’s arms. It is not long though until a baby wants to do more exploring, and it starts to crawl. It gets into and takes hold of everything possible. The child wants to see; it wants to know, and it is reaching out for knowledge whether it knows it or not. Often when you explain things to a child it will say, “Why?” Sometimes the questions children ask us make us stop and think, and at times our reply is simply, “Just because.” But that is not satisfactory; there must be reason, there must be logic and purpose in our answers. The child is growing up, getting more mature, and it receives happiness from knowing the whys of things.
2. In the years of his elementary schooling what are the things the child learns, and why are these important?
2 It is not long until the child is old enough to go to school. Then he really starts using his mind and taking in much information. The things a child learns in the first grade or the few years following he does not have to go back and study over again. These first things he learns are fundamental; they are basic. On these fundamental principles all the theories of grammar, arithmetic and pronunciation are based. He is ready to go to new ideas and greater things. So by the time he gets to high school he is working on algebra, geometry, perhaps studying chemistry, physics, languages—and those very early fundamental principles he learned are still with him and are always very helpful. They are basic things. Without that first fundamental information he could not gain maturity, and he would not be happy.
3. Why do some people have to go over the primary things again and again, but what course brings increased happiness?
3 When an individual takes up a subject for study he must get the elementary principles of the subject in mind and then build on them. As he builds on these true principles he gains greater knowledge and understanding. If he does not study and does not try to advance he will forget even the basic principles. Some people are like that. They become lazy in the use of their minds and they do not take the time to review the things they have learned or to use the knowledge they have to gain greater knowledge. Many people today get a knowledge of the truth and learn the fundamental doctrines, but because they do not use what they have learned by telling it to others, they find they must keep studying the same things over again and again. They are like the people Paul spoke about in Hebrews 5:12 (NW): “For, indeed, although you ought to be teachers in view of the time, you again need someone to teach you from the beginning the first principles of the sacred pronouncements of God, and you have become such as need milk, not solid food.” It is absolutely necessary to use the Word of God in order to have it stick in our minds. If we do not use that Word as mature teachers, we shall continue as spiritual babes. But think of the happiness that comes with increased knowledge! Then why should we always be going back to the things we learned once before? Paul said: “For everyone that partakes of milk is unacquainted with the word of righteousness, for he is a babe. But solid food belongs to mature people, to those who through use have their perceptive powers trained to distinguish both right and wrong.” (Heb 5 Vss. 13, 14, NW) There is no happiness in doing wrong. If you are mature you will know what is right and do it, and your knowledge and maturity will bring you happiness.
4. Why is associating with Jehovah’s witnesses necessary, and how many companies of them are available for such association?
4 Associating regularly with Jehovah’s witnesses for Bible study is the thing you need to build you up in the faith. Jehovah’s witnesses have Kingdom Halls scattered throughout the world. In fact, there are 13,942 companies or congregations of Jehovah’s witnesses in the world with regular meeting places so those who want to learn can learn. By regular attendance and study you can gain maturity. Jehovah God has given humans the mind to use, and it is only through use that one’s perceptive powers will be trained.
5. What do we naturally expect those with whom we study to do eventually, and how many on the average were doing this monthly?
5 It is natural for Jehovah’s witnesses as ministers and teachers to come to the conclusion that after a time the individuals with whom they are studying the Bible in their homes are ready to go out into the field service and do something with the knowledge they have gained. These ministers know that “there is more happiness in giving than there is in receiving”. During the service year of 1952, there were 426,704 ministers of Jehovah God preaching the good news every month. That is the average for the service year. There are many more publishers of the Kingdom message than that throughout the world, but not all of them got out every month to preach the Word, due to interferences or duties in life. But if they would arrange their affairs (and they should), they could be regular publishers preaching the good news, which is the most important thing a creature can do today. They would have more happiness in life if they were doing this regularly, because they would be giving.
6. Why were back-calls made last year, and how many together with how many home Bible studies?
6 Mature ministers of Jehovah keep busy making back-calls by going to the homes of people who are interested in the truth. The reason for making these back-calls is to try to help the people of good will use their perceptive powers, training them to distinguish between what is right and what is wrong, and teaching them the fundamental doctrines set forth in God’s Word. To accomplish this Jehovah’s witnesses made 21,980,794 back-calls on interested persons world-wide last year. They have been conducting 279,622 regular Bible studies on the average every month in the homes of people who want to learn.
7, 8. According to Hebrews 6:1-12, what is our proper desire and aim toward those with whom we thus study?
7 After spending six months or maybe a year studying in these homes, they believe it is time for these persons to advance into service; and they feel as Paul did when he expressed himself at Hebrews 6:1-3 (NW): “For this reason, now that we have left the elementary doctrine about the Christ, let us press on to maturity, not laying a foundation again, namely, repentance from dead works, and faith toward God, the teaching on baptisms and the laying on of the hands, the resurrection of the dead and everlasting judgment. And this we will do, if God indeed permits.” If you will read the 6th chapter of Hebrews from verses 1 to 12, you will see that Paul is trying to get these early Christians to grow, to become mature and to be like himself in the service. He points out that “God is not unrighteous so as to forget your work and the love you showed for his name, in that you have ministered to the holy ones and continue ministering”.—Heb. 6:10, NW.
8 As to those who are kind to Jehovah’s witnesses, giving them a cup of cold water, the Lord Jesus says: ‘These will be blessed.’ They are as sheep being put on the right side of the Master. At least they do not show the goatlike spirit. But do not stop with just giving a cup of cold water. Grow up to maturity. Do not stop when you have learned the fundamental doctrines that lead to life. Go on and gain life. Seek it and you will find it. That is why Paul says, in the 11th and 12th verses Heb 6:11, 12: “But we desire each one of you to show the same industriousness so as to have the full assurance of the hope down to the end, in order that you may not become sluggish, but be imitators of those who through faith and patience inherit the promises.”
9. How many pioneers have been showing maturity and gaining happiness, and how many company publishers, and with what results as to literature?
9 The 1953 Yearbook of Jehovah’s Witnesses shows how industrious these ministers of God have been during the twelve months of their service year and how they have been striving for maturity and happiness in Jehovah’s service. Many of them are in the pioneer service. By that we mean they are spending at least 100 hours a month or more, some as high as 150 or 200 hours, in preaching this good news of the Kingdom that must be announced in all the world for a witness. There were 18,181 pioneers on the average every month throughout the year, devoting themselves to the ministerial activity. Of this number there are 1,421 who have gone through the Watchtower Bible School of Gilead and who are serving in the capacity of pioneers, missionaries, circuit servants or branch servants. This great array of God’s ministers, 18,181 pioneers and 408,523 company publishers, has gone forth to the ends of the earth. In fact, their joy in wanting to give freely of the truth took them into 127 different lands, countries, territories and islands of the sea to preach the good news. They distributed literature to the amount of 14,662,122 Bibles, books and booklets so that the people might learn more of the wonderful promises Jehovah has set forth in his Word. In addition to that, they saw to it that many of the interested people would receive the Watchtower and Awake! magazines regularly. During the year they obtained 704,063 new subscriptions for these two fine magazines.
10. What quantity of magazines did they place, and how, and from what supply?
10 You probably have seen Jehovah’s witnesses on the street corners offering these two magazines, and you may have wondered, How many do they distribute? The report for the year shows that these diligent servants of God have placed 22,484,345 individual copies of these two magazines all over the world in 36 different languages and in 127 different countries. Many of the magazines were distributed in house-to-house work where much time can be spent talking to the people. To supply all the Watchtower and Awake! magazines world-wide the Society printed 58,531,323 copies.
11. How much time did they report preaching, and with what effect on many preached to?
11 Jehovah’s witnesses see that there are many things to be done in these days, but the greatest work is to promote the true worship of Jehovah God and to preach about his kingdom so that others may share in this wonderful hope. So interested are these ministers in their work that they spent 68,703,699 hours preaching. That is a great deal of talking. Have you shared in preaching the Kingdom message to others? Have you reported your work? Because of the preaching Jehovah’s witnesses have done they have interested many others in the work. In fact, before the year ended a new peak of publishers was reached, because many of those who had become interested in the great ministerial activity of Jehovah’s witnesses had gone out with them in the service.
12. The publishing was engaged in by what peak number, together with how many public meetings, and what is the reason for such effort?
12 The peak in number of publishers reported for any one month throughout the whole year was 456,265. This is the highest number of persons who have engaged in field service to help others gain knowledge of Jehovah ever to report to the Society in one year. So that such ones will never go back to childlike living, the Watch Tower Society has regular Bible studies in Kingdom Halls and in the homes of the people. Attending these meetings helps one grow to maturity. Public lectures also are arranged at the Kingdom Halls, and these talks totaled 240,921 last year. What is the reason for all this effort? It is that those who are turning to the truth may grow in powers of understanding. Paul expressed it this way: “Brothers, do not become young children in powers of understanding, but be babes as to evil; yet become full-grown in powers of understanding.”—1 Cor. 14:20, NW.
13. In what direction must we look, and how could we average 468,374 publishers in 1953?
13 The time is here for those who have dedicated their lives to Jehovah God to forget the things that are behind, this old world and its immoral way of living, and to move forward. Look to the things ahead; consider the New World society and the blessings to come. This means activity. If every company of Jehovah’s witnesses increased its number of publishers by 10 per cent during the 1953 service year, we would average 468,374 publishers for 1953. Expansion comes by bringing to maturity those who are interested in Jehovah’s kingdom. We know they will gain happiness in their maturity because they will want to give freely of the water of life. So we must expect increases and help the new ones to see their responsibility to teach others.
14. How many were baptized, and what should mature ministers do during 1953, and with what increase of publishers possible?
14 Jesus said: “My Father is glorified in this, that you keep bearing much fruit and prove yourselves my disciples.” (John 15:8, NW) Are you going to bear fruit, or are you going to be a baby all your life? Why not be a teacher? You ought to be! Let your maturity bring you happiness. “Let us press on to maturity.” (Heb. 6:1, NW) As those in Jehovah’s organization strive for maturity, they will increase in numbers. So let those who are mature ministers help others during 1953, and take those who are growing in the truth out in the witnessing work with you. If you do, we can expect a 20 per cent increase in the peak number of publishers in every company in the world and a corresponding 20 per cent increase in the year’s peak report for 1953. Why not strive to hit this new peak of 512,044 by the end of April 1953? It can be done by striving for maturity and happiness and by really helping the 54,707 individuals who symbolized their dedication to Jehovah’s service last year by water baptism.
15. According to Philippians 3:13-16, of what mental attitude should both remnant and other sheep be now?
15 Jehovah God will bring these mature, happy ministers into his kingdom of righteousness in not too long a time. Paul said: “Forgetting the things behind and stretching forward to the things ahead, I am pursuing down toward the goal for the prize of the calling above and which God extends in Christ Jesus. Let us, then, as many of us as are mature, be of this mental attitude; and if you are mentally inclined otherwise in any respect, God will reveal the above attitude to you. At any rate, to what extent we have made progress, let us go on walking orderly in this same routine.” (Phil. 3:13-16, NW) The anointed remnant must be of this mental attitude, and the other sheep too are urged to follow the same advice.
16. Of those attending the Memorial supper how many must be babes spiritually, and what happiness-bringing course should we take toward them?
16 All of us have experienced the sorrow and unhappiness of this old world. Now having turned to God’s Word we have learned what it means to be happy and joyful in his organization. So Peter said: “Accordingly, put away all moral badness and all deceitfulness and hypocrisy and envies and all kinds of backbiting, and, as newborn infants, form a longing for the unadulterated milk belonging to the word, that through it you may grow to salvation, provided you have tasted that the Lord is kind.” (1 Pet. 2:1-3, NW) So Jehovah’s servants everywhere are trying to help the “newborn infants” to grow up and gain salvation. There are many of these young ones who need help as babes in the truth. At the Memorial service of Jehovah’s witnesses last year there were 667,099 who associated themselves with God’s people on that one night. It is easy to see there is much interest, but over 200,000 of this number are spiritually babies. Most of them know the fundamental doctrines, and they are happy that they see the difference between the Devil’s organization and Jehovah’s organization. More truth though will bring happiness, satisfaction, contentment, and eventually everlasting life. Why not help all to be mature in the truth? Then they will know, just as you do, the Scriptural reason why this world is in this dilapidated condition and the reason why Jehovah God is going to destroy it. They will know what to say to people in order to comfort them. They will know, as you do, that happiness comes by gaining maturity and by taking the right course now. The right course is to associate with Jehovah’s witnesses in praising Jehovah God, promoting true worship, and preaching that the kingdom of the heavens is at hand. That will bring you true happiness that comes with maturity.
17. Judged by the 1953 Yearbook what makes Jehovah’s witnesses so happy, even despite oppressive governments?
17 What makes Jehovah’s witnesses so happy? Look at the record of their activity as reported in the 1953 Yearbook of Jehovah’s Witnesses. Examine the chart of their world-wide field service as published on pages 16, 17 in this issue of The Watchtower. There is the answer—service, true worship of Jehovah God. Some countries are not named in the report. In fact, ten of them are grouped together. Why? In order to safeguard the witness work and so as not to reveal how many persons are actually preaching behind the Iron Curtain and in dictator-controlled countries. Still the witnesses are there telling the good news to others even though under terrific persecution. All of them, no matter where they may be, are happily united as one in ‘worshiping Jehovah in holy array’. (Ps. 29:2, AS) Be one of these praisers and worshipers of Jehovah in your country in 1953!
[Chart on page 16, 17]
1952 Service Year Report of Jehovah’s Witnesses World-Wide
(See bound volume)