Why You Should Be Interested
‘INTERESTED in what?’ The greatest change that will take place in the history of mankind! An entirely new government of God’s making is about to take over the earthly scene. (Daniel 2:44) The takeover will affect every man, woman, and child—either for good or for bad. This remarkable change is to take place within the generation mentioned at Matthew 24:34. Thus, the message about that change requires the sincere and earnest interest of all people. Indeed, it would be wrong to say, ‘I’m not interested.’
When Many Showed No Interest
Our modern day is not the first time that an important and urgent message was announced that should have aroused the interest of those who were invited to hear it. Noah’s day was one such time. Because of man’s wicked, immoral, and violent personality at that time, Jehovah God purposed to destroy mankind in a global flood. (Genesis 6:5-7, 13) However, before acting to annihilate the ungodly, he arranged for Noah, a preacher of righteousness, to warn them of the coming Deluge and the course of action they needed to pursue to be preserved alive. Important as that message was, the people in general who heard about it “took no note.” (Matthew 24:39; Luke 17:26, 27; 2 Peter 2:5) They were apathetic, indifferent—just not interested! Because of this, they lost everything.
Much the same situation existed in the days of the inhabitants of the notoriously immoral cities of Sodom and Gomorrah. Although warned of their impending destruction because of their gross badness, they did not listen. They too were not interested in anyone who would disturb their routine of life. The man Lot was the only exception.—Genesis 18:20-30; 19:1-29; Luke 17:28-30.
Thus, the message was not popular among the inhabitants of these cities. Perhaps they were more concerned about what their neighbors would think of them if they showed interest. Or perhaps they feared that they would have to make changes in their lives that they were unwilling to make. Apparently, they enjoyed their licentious life-style. (Jude 7) So up to the day when their destruction did come, they suspected nothing and did not grasp what was about to happen.
Those Not Interested in Jesus’ Day
When the Son of God, Jesus Christ, was on earth, he sent out his followers to announce the good news about God’s heavenly government. (Matthew 10:7) In fact, he instructed his disciples in the manner in which they should present this unusual and important message at each home and what steps to take where householders failed to show genuine interest. Listen to him as he proceeds to train his disciples: “When you are entering into the house, greet the household; and if the house is deserving, let the peace you wish it come upon it; but if it is not deserving, let the peace from you return upon you. Wherever anyone does not take you in or listen to your words, on going out of that house or that city shake the dust off your feet.”—Matthew 10:12-14.
Note that Jesus instructed his disciples to “shake the dust off [their] feet” when they left a home or a town where there was a complete lack of interest in Jehovah’s Kingdom. What did he mean by this advice? Shaking the dust off one’s feet indicated a disclaiming of responsibility or accountability for the consequences that a householder would suffer because of lack of interest in God’s message. It implied that Jesus’ followers were peacefully departing and leaving that house or city to the consequences that would eventually come from God.
Show Interest—It Means Your Life!
It is of interest to note that Jesus Christ compared the responses of our day to those of the days of Noah and of Sodom and Gomorrah. (Matthew 24:37-39; Luke 17:26-30) Immorality and violence were prevalent both in the days of Noah and in the days of Lot. Indeed, the righteous man Lot was tormented and distressed when observing the lawlessness and the indulgence in loose conduct by the inhabitants of Sodom and Gomorrah.—2 Peter 2:6-8.
Yet, when Jesus refers to Noah’s day and to Lot’s day, he focuses our attention, not on the immorality and violence of those times, but, rather, on matters of daily concern—eating, drinking, marrying, being given in marriage, buying, selling, building, and planting. He indicated that many would not respond to the message of the good news of God’s Kingdom but would be preoccupied with the everyday affairs of life and thus show no interest in what Jehovah purposes to do. The message is one of life-or-death importance. Failure to listen would be costly. To take no note or show no interest is a serious sin.—Compare Matthew 6:31, 32.
Just how serious? Jesus went on to explain: “On the Judgment Day God will show more mercy to the people of Sodom and Gomorrah than to the people of that town” who did not listen or show interest. (Matthew 10:15, Today’s English Version) If a person does show interest, listens, and believes the message, even though he may be immoral and violent, he can change his personality and find favor in Jehovah’s eyes to qualify as a subject of the Kingdom, even as the early Christians in Corinth did.—1 Corinthians 6:9-11.
In all his conversations with his disciples, Jesus Christ urged them to listen, to pay attention, to show interest in the important message of the Kingdom of God. To rouse the attention of those to whom he spoke, he admonished: “Pay attention to how you listen.” “Let him that has ears to listen listen.” “Listen to me, all of you, and get the meaning.” “Listen and get the sense of it.”—Luke 8:18; Mark 4:9; 7:14; Matthew 15:10.
Therefore, the next time one of Jehovah’s Witnesses calls at your home, it will be to your benefit to say: ‘Come in, I’m interested.’