Education That Satisfies
IF YOU were offered the opportunity to enjoy genuine happiness, radiant health and real security, would you grasp it? No doubt you would. However, you may say: ‘This is all very fine. But does such opportunity really exist?’ Yes, it does. These benefits can be obtained by means of an education that is offered free to all peoples throughout the earth.
The value of education is widely recognized today. Many people equate education with success, prestige and good income. Thus they are willing to spend much time and money in getting a good education. For example, in the Orient many parents work very hard in order to send their children to expensive private schools and universities. The children themselves study day and night to do well in examinations, with the aim of getting a good education. This, in turn, may enable them to obtain a well-paying job and to get ahead in the world. On the other hand, some seek higher education to equip themselves for greater service to their fellowman.
True, those who are able to obtain a good secular education may gain a measure of satisfaction in achieving their goals in life. However, such satisfaction is, at best, short-lived. All men, whether well educated or not, face the same eventualities of growing old and dying. Besides, how often we see men and women, who, after receiving a good education, have their lifespan cut short by sickness or accidents!
Indeed, without life everything becomes vanity, as one cannot enjoy anything in death. Jesus Christ, the greatest teacher ever to walk the earth, pointedly drew our attention to this undeniable fact, asking: “What benefit will it be to a man if he gains the whole world but forfeits his soul?”—Matt. 16:26.
Some may say: ‘Since no one can avoid dying, a person might just as well accept this reality of death and be satisfied with getting some enjoyment from life as long as it lasts.’ However, you do not have to be satisfied with just a few years of enjoyment from life. In fact, the opportunity is open to you to enjoy life forever under the most pleasant and satisfactory conditions.
ONLY A DREAM?
Is this just a dream, or an empty promise with no possibility of its ever being fulfilled? No, because Jesus Christ, the great spokesman of the Creator, gave us assurance that everlasting life is attainable, provided one receives the right education. What kind of education? This was revealed by Jesus’ words in his prayer to his Father, Jehovah God: “This means everlasting life, their taking in knowledge of you, the only true God, and of the one whom you sent forth, Jesus Christ.”—John 17:3.
As we can gather from Jesus’ words, it is God’s will that man should enjoy the gift of life forever. In fact, when God first created man, He put before him the prospect of living eternally on earth, if man would meet the simple requirement of loving and obeying his Creator. (Gen. 2:16, 17) The Bible also reveals that man was created in God’s image, being endowed with various fine qualities of Jehovah God. This placed man in a unique position among all the creatures on earth, as no animal was created in God’s image.—Gen. 1:27.
Jehovah God, being man’s Creator, knows best how to satisfy human needs, both physical and spiritual. (Ps. 145:16) How abundantly He has provided for man’s physical needs! Can you list all the different kinds of food and drink found on earth? The number truly is staggering! So, is it not reasonable to expect the loving and generous Creator to make adequate provision also to satisfy man’s spiritual need?—Matt. 4:4.
The Greatest Study
In order for man to be truly happy and satisfied, he needs to know his Creator, to be guided by God and to have a close relationship with him. Hence, acquiring knowledge of the divine purpose is the greatest study a person can undertake. It has been observed that children from broken homes, those deprived of parental love and guidance, are often unhappy and maladjusted. Any human who does not know God and is not guided by him is in a comparable position. The lives of such persons lack real purpose and meaning. These individuals often sense the futility of life, which all too soon is cut short by death. Lacking a sure guide, often they do not know how to deal with the many problems in life.
The Bible fittingly describes the bad results of man’s alienation from God, saying: “They are in darkness mentally, and alienated from the life that belongs to God, because of the ignorance that is in them, because of the insensibility of their hearts. Having come to be past all moral sense, they gave themselves over to loose conduct to work uncleanness of every sort with greediness.”—Eph. 4:18, 19.
We can rightly conclude that the moral breakdown and lawlessness prevalent world wide today are a direct result of man’s not knowing God and not being educated in His ways. True, millions of people claim that they worship the God of the Bible. But do they really know God in the sense of knowing and following his righteous standards? Judging from the way such persons conduct themselves, they are in a position similar to that of the ancient Israelites, who also claimed to worship God. However, through his prophet Hosea, God told them: “Hear the word of Jehovah, O sons of Israel, for Jehovah has a legal case with the inhabitants of the land, for there is no truth nor loving-kindness nor knowledge of God in the land. There are the pronouncing of curses and practicing of deception and murdering and stealing and committing of adultery that have broken forth, and acts of bloodshed have touched other acts of bloodshed.” (Hos. 4:1, 2) Thus it can be seen that knowing God means much more than just professing belief in him. It also means obeying him and following his righteous ways.
In order to follow God’s ways, an individual must first be educated in them. As already noted, the accurate knowledge of God can bring eternal life. However, this does not mean that the benefits of such a course can only be enjoyed in the future. No, indeed! A godly course also brings present benefits, for “godly devotion is beneficial for all things, as it holds promise of the life now and that which is to come.”—1 Tim. 4:8.
While increasing millions in the world today suffer from broken marriages, juvenile delinquency and loneliness, what has resulted from living according to Bible principles? Why, many happy, united families that are not plagued by marital rifts, generation gaps and child crime! The Bible’s counsel assures us that applying Scriptural principles can bring about tremendous improvements in homelife.
“Husbands ought to be loving their wives as their own bodies,” said the apostle Paul. “He who loves his wife loves himself, for no man ever hated his own flesh; but he feeds and cherishes it, as the Christ also does the congregation.” Wives, too, are lovingly counseled: “On the other hand, the wife should have deep respect for her husband.” But, what about children? They are instructed to ‘be obedient to their parents in union with the Lord.’ Why? Because “this is righteous,” and therefore pleases Jehovah. Moreover, honoring one’s parents carries with it a promise: “That it may go well with you and you may endure a long time on the earth.” On the father rests the prime responsibility to impart spiritual instruction to his children, for he is told to “go on bringing them up in the discipline and mental-regulating of Jehovah.”—Eph. 5:28–6:4.
Being educated in God’s ways also enables a person to gain many loving friends who genuinely care for him. Such Bible-based education will bring him into association with true Christians, who sincerely strive to comply with the counsel: “But whoever has this world’s means for supporting life and beholds his brother having need and yet shuts the door of his tender compassions upon him, in what way does the love of God remain in him? Little children, let us love, neither in word nor with the tongue, but in deed and truth. And this commandment we have from him, that the one who loves God should be loving his brother also.” (1 John 3:17, 18; 4:21) Do you not agree that associating with such friends will bring much joy and satisfaction into your life?
Above all, recipients of this life-giving education can achieve a peace of mind that results only from a close personal relationship with God. While people in general are becoming increasingly distressed and anguished over the mounting problems and ominous future confronting the world today, many persons everywhere are finding great comfort in this assurance from the Bible: “Do not be anxious over anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication along with thanksgiving let your petitions be made known to God; and the peace of God that excels all thought will guard your hearts and your mental powers by means of Christ Jesus.”—Phil. 4:6, 7.
Because the loving Creator cares for humans and wants to see them happy and satisfied, he is today providing free education earth wide through the Bible study program carried on by his Christian witnesses in over 200 lands. Yes, God is issuing his kind invitation to all peoples of the world. (Isa. 55:1, 2) Millions around the earth have accepted his invitation and have found that they can wholeheartedly agree with the psalmist, who urged: “Taste and see that Jehovah is good, O you people; happy is the able-bodied man that takes refuge in him.” (Ps. 34:8) Will you seek the education that brings such fine benefits?
[Blurb on page 28]
Man’s Creator knows best how to satisfy human needs, both physical and spiritual
[Blurb on page 29]
A godly course brings present benefits, for “godly devotion is beneficial for all things, as it holds promise of the life now and that which is to come.”
[Blurb on page 30]
Being educated in God’s ways also enables a person to gain many loving friends who genuinely care for him.