Apply Your Hearts
1. What results from the free giving of God’s Word, and what reward does it bring?
WHEN one keeps the Word of God first in his mind then he is going to gather a good treasure. Working continually with the Word of God brings great gain and increases one’s treasure. No matter how much of this treasure one gives away, by word of mouth or the printed page, the treasure itself becomes greater. Moses was well aware of this fact. Just before the children of Israel were to cross the Jordan into the Promised Land he said to the Israelites under inspiration: “Apply your hearts to all the words that I am speaking in warning to you today. . . . For it is no valueless word for you, but it means your life, and by this word you may lengthen your days upon the soil to which you are crossing the Jordan to take possession of it.”—Deut. 32:45-47.
2. Where are the words of life found today, and what part does one’s heart play in bringing forth a good treasure?
2 Jehovah’s words carry valuable information, and, in fact, they are words of life. It means great wealth, a treasure, to heed them. The individual who applies his heart to all the words that Jehovah speaks is the individual who will be doing the will of God. He is the one that will bring forth good treasure during his life and he will be a blessing to other people. Jesus said: “A good man brings forth good out of the good treasure of his heart, . . . for out of the heart’s abundance his mouth speaks.” (Luke 6:45) How necessary, then, to apply our hearts to God’s Word so as to have this good treasure! This good treasure is the Word of God.
3, 4. (a) What miracle of Jesus shows the benefit of giving freely? (b) By constant giving what chance is there of our losing our treasure?
3 The marvelous thing about doing good to others is the fact that goodness always replenishes itself. As we let the truth in our hearts overflow to others and preach the Word of God, the truth never becomes diminished. It never becomes exhausted. But, rather, it increases so that even greater riches can be given freely. It makes us think of the miracle that Jesus performed when he fed the great crowd and he told his disciples: “‘You give them something to eat.’ They said to him: ‘We have nothing here but five loaves and two fishes.’ He said: ‘Bring them here to me.’ Next he commanded the crowds to recline on the grass and took the five loaves and two fishes, and, looking up to heaven, he said a blessing and, after breaking the loaves, he distributed them to the disciples, the disciples in turn to the crowds. So all ate and were satisfied, and they took up the surplus of fragments, twelve baskets full. Yet those eating comprised about five thousand men, besides women and children.” (Matt. 14:16-20) Jesus was very generous in his giving. He started out with five loaves and two fishes along with Jehovah’s blessing. So he could keep on giving, and after he had given them all they wanted he had more left than when he started. In fact, he had left over twelve baskets full of food!
4 Jehovah has provided the Holy Scriptures full of knowledge and wisdom and he has given his servants this written Word. The more we give out to others of what we learn from Jehovah’s Word, the more there is left for us to keep on giving. The more we work with the truth, the richer we become. God’s Word says: “The good man out of his good treasure sends out good things.” (Matt. 12:35) What a great, inexhaustible treasure the truth is! Of those who are faithful and use what they have, Jesus says: “To everyone that has, more will be given; but from the one that does not have, even what he has will be taken away.”—Luke 19:26.
RESULTS OF CHRISTIAN MINISTRY
5. How many persons regularly engaged in giving to others out of Jehovah’s treasure in the 1960 service year, and in how many lands?
5 The prophet Moses knew it was necessary to listen to the words of Jehovah, and he said: “Apply your hearts to all the words that I am speaking. . . . It means your life.” (Deut. 32:46, 47) The earnest endeavor of Jehovah’s witnesses has been to make this truth known around the world. Last year, in 1960, they did make the truth known in 179 different nations, islands of the sea and protectorates. Under the direction of the Watch Tower Society’s eighty-five branch offices there have been 851,378 ordained ministers preaching the truth concerning the good news of God’s kingdom world-wide. These Christian people have given freely from the good treasure of their hearts by good works. Because of their global preaching activity in many tongues, talking to all kinds of people, Jehovah’s witnesses are now enjoying the regular cooperation of 47,896 more individuals than they did the year before. Their service year report shows a 6-percent increase in the number of persons regularly preaching with the organization.
6-8. (a) What grand new peak in Kingdom proclaimers was reached? (b) How many were baptized, and how many assembled world-wide on April 10, and why? (c) How many are privileged to serve Bethel homes?
6 A new peak of publishers was reached, too, during 1960. There have been as many as 916,332 different persons sharing in the preaching of the good news of God’s kingdom. This is great cause for rejoicing. These individuals have all used their treasure to do good, and if they continue faithful in the ministry and apply their hearts to the Word of God, their good treasure will become greater. This great crowd of people, numbering 916,332, are organized into 21,008 congregations. In these congregations Jehovah’s witnesses study the Word of God together, and they go out in the field ministry from house to house, and in so doing put their faith into action. They all want to do good with their knowledge of God’s Word. These congregations, in turn, comprise 1,561 circuits, and these circuits are grouped into 194 districts situated throughout the world.
7 It is a joy to report that during the 1960 service year 69,027 persons were baptized in water in symbol of their dedication to the doing of Jehovah’s will. With these thousands of newly ordained ministers bringing forth good treasure from their hearts, many, many more thousands of people of good will will be reached with the good news of God’s kingdom. On April 10, 1960, there were 1,519,821 persons assembled at the Memorial service of Christ’s death. This was the world-wide attendance, and on that evening 13,911 individuals partook of the emblems served.a
8 The eighty-five branch offices in the principal countries and islands of the earth direct the affairs of the districts, circuits and congregations of Jehovah’s witnesses. In these main offices of supervision known as Bethel homes there are 1,299 ordained Christian ministers working. In connection with many of these offices the Society has printing plants where Bibles, books, booklets, magazines, tracts and other information are printed in over 125 languages for the spreading of the good news by means of the printed page.
9. To what extent was the treasure of God’s Word distributed in book and booklet form?
9 In order to help those who are sighing and crying because of the abominations that exist in the world Jehovah’s witnesses use much printed matter to aid people to get acquainted with God’s Word and to get a clearer understanding of the Holy Bible. To this end there were distributed in the field, which field is the world, 4,167,407 bound books and 12,372,784 booklets.
10. What was accomplished with magazines during the 1960 service year?
10 The greatest aid that the Society has for helping believers in God’s Word to understand the Holy Scriptures is the Watchtower magazine, and each year special effort is put forth to obtain subscriptions for this magazine along with its companion magazine, the Awake! During the year the ministers who preached from house to house were able to obtain 1,317,009 new subscriptions. This was 70,035 more subscriptions than they obtained the previous year. Those who do not care to subscribe for the magazines quite often get individual copies, and Jehovah’s witnesses were able to distribute 97,082,433 individual copies of the Watchtower and Awake! magazines in their many languages. This was an increase of 4,771,655 over the previous year. While the distribution of books, booklets and magazines is very necessary in order to get this good news of the Kingdom preached, what does the most good for one interested in the truth is to study the Bible with one of Jehovah’s witnesses.
11, 12. (a) Are Jehovah’s witnesses interested only in placing literature, and why do you so answer? (b) What was the total amount of time actually spent in preaching and teaching during the service year of 1960?
11 It takes much time for Jehovah’s witnesses to call back and study the Bible, or one of the Society’s publications, with the people. However, it is truly a joy to do so. This is where the good treasure of the Christian’s heart can abound and can help the individual being studied with to have his heart filled with good treasure. Jehovah’s witnesses have made back-calls on interested people and have started home Bible studies. The number of return visits made totaled 44,440,977, an increase over last year of 200,759. Jehovah’s people also conducted hour-long Bible studies—and perhaps some of them were longer than that—to the number of 646,108 weekly. In other words, Christian teachers each week made calls on individuals to study the Bible with them in order to help them get a clear understanding of the purposes of Jehovah, that they might apply their hearts to all the words that Jehovah God has set forth in his Holy Scriptures. This is a marvelous free service that Jehovah’s witnesses render anyone, anywhere in the world. In carrying on this most important work they have increased their efforts to the point of conducting 41,033 more weekly home Bible studies this year than last year.
12 To distribute this tremendous amount of literature in its millions of copies and to make all these back-calls and conduct these home Bible studies, Jehovah’s witnesses have to spend millions of hours in preaching. In fact, during the year they discussed the Bible truths with the people of the world for 131,662,684 hours. This is 5,345,560 more hours than they spent in preaching during the previous year.
13. (a) What type of ministry must Jehovah’s witnesses carry on? (b) How do they build physically and spiritually?
13 Jehovah’s witnesses are building to the future. They are interested in just one thing, everlasting life. With this they can carry on true worship of Jehovah God forever. They know that the life that is worth while will be theirs in the new world of righteousness under the kingdom of heaven that faithful men have prayed for for 1900 years: “Let your kingdom come. Let your will come to pass, as in heaven, also upon earth.” (Matt. 6:10) Before that time comes they have an obligation. They may not sit back and rest and feel so relaxed and satisfied that God must have a place in the new world for them. No, they must be energetic ministers. They must fully appreciate that God has given them the sword of the spirit, which is the Word of God, to wield. They must do the will of their Master and must walk in the footsteps of Christ Jesus. Therefore, they must think of the future. They build to it physically and spiritually. By building physically we mean they must work at building many new branch offices throughout the world, many new Kingdom Halls, larger printing plants where more literature can be produced for a greater witness for God’s kingdom. They must work for increasing the visible theocratic organization of Jehovah’s witnesses. At the same time they must build themselves up spiritually so that a good treasure can come out of their good hearts.
14. What were the production figures for the Watchtower and Awake! magazines in the past service year?
14 Knowing that the Word of God contains the words of life, Jehovah’s people in these many printing establishments throughout the world have produced 7,998,010 bound books and 14,728,423 booklets. They have printed the Watchtower magazine in fifty-eight languages during the year to the total number of 90,898,182 copies. The Awake! magazine has been printed in twenty-three different languages, and 78,947,503 copies came off the Society’s presses. The total number of magazines printed in the various printing plants of Jehovah’s witnesses during the 1960 service year reached to the number of 169,845,685, an increase of 9,445,452 copies over the previous year. The truth of God’s kingdom must be made known in all the inhabited earth for the purpose of a witness.
15-17. (a) Of what aid are the publications of the Society along with the Bible? (b) Give the numbers of those in the special and regular pioneer service, and how much time they spend in the ministry. (c) Was there any increase in pioneer numbers during the 1960 service year?
15 Jehovah’s witnesses everywhere are happy that the people are reading these magazines. These dated publications bring much information about present world conditions to the attention of the people. Marvelously today’s world conditions are fulfilling Bible prophecy. By the study of these publications with the Bible one is able to keep “a tight grip on the word of life.” (Phil. 2:16) All of God’s servants in His New World society rejoice that so many persons have applied their hearts to all the words of Jehovah, and, as pointed out, 916,332 individuals did good preaching work during the 1960 service year. Out of this great number there were 5,890 who engaged in special pioneer activity. These special representatives of the Society were sent into isolated territory to work or to organize small groups of God’s people in order that they might be built up spiritually. Their task was a hard one but their Christian experiences were worth it all.
16 In addition to this special group of pioneers there were 24,694 regular pioneers working with congregations. These regular pioneers were putting in an average of 95 to 100 hours each month preaching the good news of the Kingdom. While the congregation publisher devotes approximately ten hours, or a little more on the average, in actual house-to-house work and in conducting Bible studies in the homes of the people, these pioneers devote 100 hours or thereabouts, and the special pioneers spend around 150 hours in preaching from house to house and studying the Bible in the homes of the people. It is seen, then, that there is a small group of 30,584 pioneers and special pioneers who are doing a great work in all parts of the earth. It is the Society’s hope that many of the congregation publishers will be able to arrange their affairs so as to join the pioneer ranks and eventually the special pioneer ranks.
17 The increase in the pioneer service over the previous year was 1,896. This was good, but there is still much room in the world today for pioneer ministers, and we urge all Christians to give this matter prayerful and careful thought. The field is great.
18, 19. (a) What was necessary financially in order to carry on the preaching work during the 1960 service year? (b) Who made such financial support possible?
18 The Society aided the 5,148 special pioneer publishers and its 742 missionaries to remain in their isolated territories. The funds that the Society spent in their behalf during the year amounted to $2,089,648.86. Then, too, the Society sent circuit servants, district servants and special representatives to serve congregations and isolated Christian groups throughout the year, and it spent $402,901.13 for this activity. So to help the expansion work in the field of preaching the good news alone the Society spent during the 1960 service year $2,492,549.99.
19 We want to take this occasion to thank all the Christian people who have contributed funds to the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society in order to aid that Society in the expansion of the preaching and teaching work. If it were not for their contributions to the Watch Tower Society, this great work of spreading the good news of the Kingdom could not be done to such a great extent as it is being done today.
20. What should all who love truth want to do now?
20 The Word of God is powerful. It is sharper than any two-edged sword. When individuals take time to read the Word of God, study it with a Christian and believe it, they are storing up a treasure in their hearts. As Jesus said: “A good man brings forth good out of the good treasure of his heart, . . . for out of the heart’s abundance his mouth speaks.” Let everyone who loves truth apply his heart to the Word of God, “for it is no valueless word for you,” but it means your life.
a 1959 1960
MEMORIAL ATTENDANCE WORLD-WIDE 1,283,603 1,519,821
MEMORIAL PARTAKERS WORLD-WIDE 14,511 13,911
[Chart on page 20-22]
1960 SERVICE YEAR REPORT OF JEHOVAH’S WITNESSES WORLD WIDE
(See bound volume)