Bracing Up the Mind for New Nation Activity
THE new nation is not modern Israel in Palestine nor any other nation formed by imperfect men who are a part of this old world or old system of things. The new nation is the nation foretold by Isaiah as being “brought forth at once.” (Isa. 66:7, 8, AS) It is the nation that is happy, because its God is Jehovah. (Ps. 33:12, Ro) It is made up of the remnant of the members of Christ’s body, and the glorified enthroned Jesus Christ is their reigning King; but now there associate with this spiritual nation a growing flock of the other sheep of the King-Shepherd.—John 10:16, NW; Ezek. 34:23, 24.
And what is the activity of this new nation and its good-will companions? It is that of bearing witness to the great King of eternity, Jehovah God, and preaching “this good news of the kingdom” “in all the inhabited earth for the purpose of a witness to all the nations.”—Matt. 24:14, NW.
And why should it be necessary to brace up our minds for such activity? As Christians we need to brace ourselves, because the whole world is going in the opposite direction and is arrayed against us even as it was arrayed against our Master when he was on earth. It was foretold regarding him: “I have set my face like a flint”; and as the time drew near for his being offered up “he firmly set his face to travel to Jerusalem.” Because of this determined bracing of himself he was able to say, by way of encouragement to his apostles on the night of his betrayal: “In the world you will have tribulation, but cheer up! I have conquered the world.” (Isa. 50:7, RS; Luke 9:51; John 16:33, NW) And that world includes not only the visible enemies of the new nation but primarily its invisible enemies, Satan and his demon.—Eph. 6:10-12.
Because of this opposition to New Nation activity Peter admonishes us: “Brace up your minds for activity, keep completely balanced and set your hope upon the undeserved kindness that is to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ.—1 Pet. 1:13-15, NW.
It is with the girdle of truth that we must brace up our minds for the strenuous activity that must be carried on by those who belong to the new nation. It means “keep on watching and praying.” It means diligently studying God’s Word, not contenting ourselves with a mere superficial reading of it and the spiritual food Jehovah provides at the present time. It means being alert to one’s opportunities of service and to the snares that lie in one’s path. It means being forward-looking, of a positive frame of mind, strong in faith, firm in hope, having our minds filled with thoughts that are ‘righteous, chaste, true, praiseworthy and virtuous.’—Phil. 4:8.