You Are Invited to the “Divine Justice” District Conventions
WHAT a Grand Provider our loving Creator, Jehovah God, is! Truly, “every good gift and every perfect present” proceed from him. (James 1:17) Fittingly, in Psalm 136 we read 26 times the expression: “For his loving-kindness is to time indefinite.”
Among his many spiritual provisions for his ancient people were three annual festivals: the Passover and the Festival of Unfermented Cakes; the Festival of Weeks, or Pentecost; and the Festival of Booths, or Ingathering. These three festivals were viewed with great anticipation, for they were both spiritually upbuilding and occasions of great joy.—Leviticus 23:40-43.
In modern times, Jehovah God has put it into the hearts of his servants likewise to have three annual spiritual festivals: the special assembly day, the two-day circuit assembly, and the three- or four-day district convention. These also serve as occasions of spiritual upbuilding and joyous association. According to reports received at the time of this writing, 6,128,388 attended the “Trust in Jehovah” District Conventions that began in June 1987, and 85,091 were baptized. This year every Witness looks forward to attending the “Divine Justice” District Convention.
What a grand and noble theme “Divine Justice” is! And how important! Why, even imperfect men pay lip service to the importance of justice. That is why the framers of the United States Constitution some 200 years ago provided not only for executive and legislative branches of government but also for a judiciary so that the cause of justice would be served. However, long centuries before that, Jehovah God himself provided for three divisions of government, all of which reside in him. Thus, at Isaiah 33:22 we read: “Jehovah is our Judge, Jehovah is our Statute-giver, Jehovah is our King.”
In fact, we are told that justice is the end, goal, or purpose of government. But while recognizing this fine principle, when it comes to putting it into practice, how far short selfish and imperfect men come! All forms of racial, national, and religious prejudice are just so many instances of the violation of justice. And so are all abuses of power, whether perpetrated by governments, corporations, religious bodies, or individuals.
How thankful we can be that God’s Word assures us of the ultimate triumph of justice and righteousness, for Jehovah is preeminently the God of justice! That is why Moses sang of him: “The Rock, perfect is his activity, for all his ways are justice. A God of faithfulness, with whom there is no injustice; righteous and upright is he.” (Deuteronomy 32:4) Jehovah God has such respect for justice that he gave his only-begotten Son as a sacrifice so that He might bring everlasting life to obedient mankind. (Romans 3:25, 26) Rightly, Jehovah favors those who are lovers of justice and righteousness, even as we read at Psalm 11:7: “Jehovah is righteous; he does love righteous acts. The upright are the ones that will behold his face.” According to another translation, he “is just and loves just dealing.”—The New English Bible.*
Our “Divine Justice” District Convention will strengthen our faith in the ultimate triumph of righteousness. It will also strengthen our determination at all times and under all circumstances to heed the command at Micah 6:8 to “exercise justice.” This is a real challenge in view of our inherited selfish tendencies and the temptations of the selfish world all about us.
In most locations, the convention will open on Thursday afternoon, and each day will feature an appropriate theme, the first day’s theme being “Happy Are Those Observing Justice,” based on Psalm 106:3. The keynote address will highlight that justice marks all God’s ways, and it will be followed by reports from full-time observers of justice, such as missionaries from foreign lands.
“Receive the Discipline That Gives Insight” (based on Proverbs 1:3) is Friday’s theme. On this day, two symposiums will stress the importance of disciplining and of accepting discipline. A modern-day drama, “Marked for Survival,” will underscore the need to be identified as one of Jehovah’s servants. The day’s program will conclude with some very fine counsel to “Look to Jehovah for Insight.”
Reassuring is the theme of the third day, Saturday: “His Judgments Are True and Righteous,” taken from Revelation 19:2. Featured in the morning is the talk “Baptism That Leads to a Favorable Judgment.” The afternoon’s program will begin with a symposium that will counsel elders to “Serve for Justice Itself.” This will be followed by another symposium, entitled “The Appointed Time Is Near,” dealing with prophecies in the Christian Greek Scriptures that foretell the triumph of justice.
Sunday, the fourth and final day of the convention, has as its theme “Justice—Justice You Should Pursue.” (Deuteronomy 16:20) Outstanding in the morning’s program is the colorful and timely Bible drama “Jehovah’s Judgments Against Law-Defying People.” A truly comforting message for all lovers of justice is contained in the afternoon’s public discourse, “Justice for All by God’s Appointed Judge.” All will get more benefit from this talk if they first familiarize themselves with Acts chapter 17. Fittingly, in the concluding talk, all present will be admonished, “Keep Pursuing Justice as the Climax Nears.”
Truly, a rich spiritual feast awaits all who attend one of the “Divine Justice” District Conventions. So come with a good spiritual appetite, fully conscious of your spiritual need. Show the same appreciation for Jehovah’s table that you show when attending your local congregation meetings—by the way you are groomed, by arriving well before the program starts, and by remaining for each day’s concluding prayer. Give rapt attention to each part on the program. Take notes; these will not only give you something to remember the convention by but will help you to concentrate on the material as it is being presented.
And let us not overlook the principle stated by Jesus and recorded at Acts 20:35: “There is more happiness in giving than there is in receiving.” So do your part to help the convention function smoothly and efficiently. And be ever alert to opportunities for informal witnessing. Be especially conscious of this, for no time has been set aside for house-to-house witnessing during the convention. In all such ways, you can demonstrate that you are indeed a happy observer of justice.
You may contact Jehovah’s Witnesses locally for the convention location nearest you
Basically, there is no distinction between justice and righteousness, although justice often has legal associations.—Compare 2 Timothy 2:22; James 1:20, New World Translation and The New English Bible.