Missionaries to Fill the Need
HAVE you ever wished that someone would sit down with you in your home and help you to understand the Bible? Would you like to be better acquainted with the life and teachings of Jesus Christ? Do you often wonder what the Scriptures have to say about this present time of trouble, and the prospects for the future?
If you do not know the Bible as well as you would like, you have much company. Many persons who have attended church most of their lives have not been adequately taught the Bible. Regarding this the February 18, 1966, issue of Christianity Today said:
“Seminary professors know that it is futile to expect their entering students who have been under the instruction of the Church all their lives to have anything approaching an ordered knowledge of the main context of Scripture. . . . As the prophet Amos said to Israel, there is a famine in the land, a famine of hearing the Word of God.”
The failure of Christendom’s religions to provide Bible instruction has resulted in a great need for teachers of God’s Word. To fill this need, Jehovah’s witnesses, now over a million strong world wide, call regularly at the homes of people everywhere and offer to study the Bible with interested persons in their own homes free of charge. Also, with this need in mind the Watchtower Bible School of Gilead was established in February 1943, and it now sends out some 100 specially trained missionaries every six months to scores of lands. On Sunday, February 27, the school’s forty-first class of 103 students graduated.
At the graduation exercises held in the large Jehovah’s Witnesses Assembly Hall in New York City, 1,905 persons gathered to listen to parting words of admonition.
The vice-president of the Watch Tower Society, F. W. Franz, opened his remarks by pointing back to the middle of World War II when, in September 1942, the president of the Society addressed a vast audience in Cleveland, Ohio, on the subject “Peace—Can It Last?” Franz asked: “Was the speaker, Nathan H. Knorr, crazy? Didn’t he know what state the affairs of the world were in?”
Franz went on to explain that the remarks of the speaker were perfectly sane, for God’s Word foresaw the end of World War II, and following it a postwar peace that would not last. “Now, here we are,” Franz continued, “in the twenty-first year of this peace since World War II, and the prediction is that this peace will not last. . . . It should fill you with a sense of urgency,” Franz told the students, “to realize that the sands in the hourglass up above are running out, and the time is coming to a close for this work that has to be done before this peace ends.”
“Look at what people are facing,” Franz urged. “Not exactly the outbreak of World War III, a battle between men, no, but what you are facing and people in your assignments are facing is foretold in the Word of God.” He then turned his audience’s attention to Isaiah 66:15-18, where it shows that people are facing the coming of Jehovah “as a very fire” to execute his anger against all flesh.
“So, then, what are you going to do?” Franz asked. “What use are you going to make of the peace in which we still find ourselves until it ends . . . at Armageddon?” He then urged the students to serve as “a sign” to the “nations,” and direct people to God’s organization, represented in the Bible by “Jerusalem.”—Isa. 66:19-24; 2:2, 3.
The Watch Tower Society’s president, N. H. Knorr, then brought the morning program to a close with practical admonition on how to realize happiness in living. Pointing to the key to happy living given at Ecclesiastes 3:12, 13, Knorr emphasized: “It’s such a simple way of living, and it sums up what every one of us is doing every day of our lives.” The texts read: “I have come to know that there is nothing better for them than to rejoice and to do good during one’s life; and also that every man should eat and indeed drink and see good for all his hard work. It is the gift of God.”
“God has provided us food and drink and work to do,” Knorr explained. So by eating, drinking and performing hard work, we can rejoice in the good we have done. “Every day in our life, we should be able to retire at night being glad, happy, for that day of life, because we should be able to see the good that we did because of our hard work.”
“When Jesus came to the earth, he worked,” Knorr pointed out. He finished God’s work. (John 4:34) Jehovah God had made the promise that a deliverer would come forth to wipe out the Devil’s organization, bring peace to the earth and remove sin. Jesus was sent to the earth to vindicate God’s name and provide the ransom sacrifice, that sin might be taken away. “So Jesus came to finish that which Jehovah God started,” Knorr explained. “And he did; he bought the whole human family, and he sat down at the right hand of his Father in heaven until the establishment of the righteous government that will bring peace and prosperity to everyone that loves life.”
Directing attention to their work ahead, Knorr told the graduating class of missionaries that there was much to do. “There are millions of people in this earth that need assistance in the understanding of God’s Word,” he said. “Here is where the whole world is weak; they do not have the knowledge of the Word of God.” So Knorr emphasized: “Work hard, and then you will rejoice because of the things you are doing.”
After the 103 students were presented with their assignments, a representative of the student body read a resolution expressing their willingness to go any place in the world. “When we came to school we were like Isaiah, who said: ‘Here I am.’ Now with the benefits of having attended Gilead School behind us . . . we heartily say, ‘Send me,’ yes, send us out that we might do our part in declaring the great name of our God and Father, Jehovah.”
Should these missionaries, or any other of Jehovah’s witnesses, call at your home and offer to study the Bible with you, accept their invitation. Learn about and accept God’s grand provisions for everlasting life in happiness.