Are You Showing Concern?
‘AM I showing concern for what?’ you may ask. The psalmist David answers:
The “matters” relating to Jehovah’s wonderful work of establishing a Messianic kingdom for the blessing of all mankind will indeed bring “glorious splendor” to Jehovah’s “dignity.” These “matters” are far more important than those of a personal nature. So are we giving them due concern?
Appropriately, for 1981 the yeartext of Jehovah’s Witnesses is: “Your loyal ones will bless you. About the glory of your kingship they will talk.”—Ps. 145:10, 11.
Loyalty to God’s kingship is a measure of how concerned we are about the “matters” of the Kingdom work now being done on earth.
JESUS SETS EXAMPLE
What a wonderful example of loyalty to God’s kingship we have in Jehovah’s firstborn Son! He has always shown intense interest in and concern for God’s wonderful works. In his prehuman existence he is described as a “master worker,” and ‘the things he was fond of were with the sons of men.’ (Prov. 8:30, 31) When Jehovah’s Son came to earth, he demonstrated the same concern for working with his Father, the same ‘fondness for the sons of men.’ After healing a crippled man on a Sabbath day, Jesus said: “My Father has kept working until now, and I keep working.”—John 5:17.
Jesus expended himself untiringly, night and day, in caring for all the “matters” having to do with the kingdom of God. This proved to all sincere onlookers that he was the Son of God. When the time came for Jesus to lay down his life in death, he had the satisfaction of being able to say: “I have glorified you on the earth, having finished the work you have given me to do.” (John 17:4) Yes, Jesus Christ had shown the greatest concern for his Father’s Kingdom interests, being a loyal supporter and proclaimer of the Kingdom.
While Jesus was with his disciples, he taught them to have the same concern for people that he had, the same desire to work in the interests of the Kingdom. (Matt. 9:37, 38; 10:1-15) How did those early Christians show their concern? Each proved his loyalty to the Kingdom by being a personal proclaimer of the “good news.” Many became full-time preachers. These could be sent to distant missionary assignments. Some of the apostles and “older men” in Jerusalem, in addition to their personal preaching activity, willingly accepted the responsibility of overseeing the whole field of preaching. (Acts chap. 15) Other “older men” accepted the oversight of local congregations. (Acts 14:23) Further, those early Christians gladly contributed to special relief funds to help their brothers in need elsewhere.—Rom. 15:26.
Yes, men and women, old and young, became “God’s fellow workers,” “fellow workers in the truth,” “fellow workers for the kingdom of God.” (1 Cor. 3:9; 3 John 8; Col. 4:11) They used every means of communication known in those days to reach the furthermost parts of their territories. They willingly gave of themselves and their resources to attain this goal. (2 Cor. 12:15) God blessed them for the loyal concern they showed for the work of the Kingdom.
WHO TODAY SHOW CONCERN?
What a fine example Jesus and these early Christians left for us to follow in this 20th century! With the ever-growing population on this earth, the harvest today is far greater than it was in the first century. Compared to the vast field available for preaching, the “workers” are still “few” in number. So again it becomes necessary to “beg the Master of the harvest to send out workers into his harvest.”—Matt. 9:37, 38.
Today, who are the loyal ones willingly responding to this urgent call to action? Jehovah’s Witnesses are showing concern for these “matters” relating to Jehovah’s wonderful Messianic kingdom. This is proved by their worldwide preaching of the “good news of the kingdom.” (Matt. 24:14) Just as in the first century, we now find men and women, old and young, becoming “fellow workers for the kingdom of God.” Their one desire before the end of this system of things arrives is to be able to say like their Master, ‘We have finished the work you have given us to do.’
For over 70 years now this worldwide work of preaching has been directed from the world headquarters of Jehovah’s Witnesses in Brooklyn, New York. Here and at 97 branches throughout the world there are 5,039 volunteer workers who are showing concern for Kingdom interests. How? By devoting full time to the preparing, printing and dispatching of millions upon millions of Bibles, books, booklets and magazines. These are used by over 2 1/4 million Witnesses in their preaching and teaching work. Each of the more than 5,000 voluntary workers is given a small clothing and expense allowance as well as adequate food and shelter.
Due to the rapid expansion of the Kingdom work in many lands it has been necessary to enlarge many of the printing facilities. Some of these are completed; others are under construction. Much of the building work has been done by volunteers, thus keeping construction costs at a minimum.
In recent years, great strides have been made in methods of printing, and these new processes are being implemented in many of the branches as well as at the world headquarters of Jehovah’s Witnesses. Another benefit of this expansion and building work is that better oversight of the work of preaching in the 43,181 congregations of Jehovah’s Witnesses can thus be achieved. It is being done so that the printed message can be presented in the most effective and appealing manner, and also so that this all-important work can be completed before the outbreak of the “great tribulation.”—Matt. 24:21.
HOW IS IT ALL POSSIBLE?
Some of our readers may be wondering how it is possible to carry on such expansion work in the face of increasing construction costs, as well as rising travel and living expenses. It is possible only because there are many thousands of Witnesses, and many others who are interested in their way of worship, who have shown “concern” during the past year. How? By their making voluntary contributions and loans to the Watch Tower Society.
We would now like to say to all such willing helpers, Thank you very much for your loving concern in these “matters” having to do with the work of Jehovah’s kingdom.
Your open-handedness has made it possible to make rapid progress with the many building projects and the purchasing and installing of new printing equipment. It has also aided in making funds available to the amount of over $22 million dollars to help support the many thousands of full-time ministers. These include traveling overseers, missionaries and special pioneers. By sharing so liberally in this way, as well as by having a personal part in preaching the “good news,” you are indeed ‘honoring Jehovah with your valuable things.’—Prov. 3:9.
We are confident that Jehovah will move the hearts of his loyal worshipers to show as great a concern during this year. Any contributions toward Jehovah’s work should be sent to the local branch office of the Watch Tower Society in your country. For those living in the United States, contributions or loans should be sent to 25 Columbia Heights, Brooklyn, N.Y. 11201. Every donation received will be acknowledged by the Society.
Great delight and satisfaction are enjoyed by those praising Jehovah and manifesting deep “concern” for matters relating to his “wonderful works.” Are you showing such “concern”? We hope that you are doing so, for thus you will enjoy very satisfying spiritual blessings from Jehovah’s open hand.—Ps. 145:15, 16.