1 An important work Jesus outlined for his followers is to “make disciples of people of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the holy spirit, teaching them to observe all the things I have commanded you.” (Matt. 28:19, 20) It is important that those who are baptized have the full opportunity to gain knowledge and understanding and to have appreciation of what it means to be baptized in the name of the Father, the Son and the holy spirit. There is also the necessity to teach them to observe all the things that Jesus has commanded. Obviously this requires time. In order to become disciples they have to take in knowledge and be instructed. In many cases the Truth book is a basic book that they study.
2 In the future, when the time comes for considering baptism, the information on pages 18 and 19 of the Organization book will be considered with the candidate. Then there is a review of the 80 questions that are listed, along with the scriptures. In addition to that it is important that the individual contemplating his baptism and dedicated service to Jehovah should see clearly what is involved in this serious step. Therefore, in the future it will be part of the preparation for baptism for the elders to arrange to discuss with baptismal candidates the material in Chapter 6, “Your Service to God,” in the Organization book. It is not good to rush through the 80 questions, or Chapter 6 of the Organization book. So the elders are encouraged to allow time for this. As soon as they know of a coming assembly, they can make plans to help those who are considering baptism.
3 Those who contemplate baptism may obtain the Organization book when they approach the elders and indicate that it is their desire to be immersed. It is fine if they can read through all the Organization book before baptism. But we do want to be sure to go over the 80 questions and Chapter 6 with them. It is preferable to do so on an individual basis rather than doing this in a large group, so that the elder will be better able to see if the individual has the information in mind and knows what he is undertaking when making a dedication and being baptized, taking up the service of Jehovah. It is not advisable to try to study Chapter 6 as one would the Watchtower magazine, but the material can be talked over, perhaps making use of the subheadings as points to be discussed, and considering the scriptures. The time spent by the elders in going over this material is field service time and can be so reported. More than one elder may take turns in discussing the material with one person if desired.
4 Much of the instructing of disciples is done following baptism. Jesus stressed the need to teach the newly baptized ones all his commandments. The publishers who are studying with people who get baptized should continue studying with them thereafter. This is part of our field service. The knowledge that a person can get from just one book we do not find to be sufficient to round out his spiritual training and fit him for the work to be done and the pressures that come upon those who serve Jehovah in these last days. We believe that at least two books should be studied with all persons who come into the truth. It is advisable to study the publication that will be most beneficial for the one who has just been baptized. So the study should continue after baptism until the second book has been completed. If you are studying with someone when he is baptized and are in the middle of a book, go right on with the study of that book until it is finished. During that period you will continue to report the study as a home Bible study and count the time spent in the service while doing this teaching work.
5 Newly baptized ones appreciate the close association with those who are their fellow servants, especially with the one who found them and has helped them through home Bible study. So we want to encourage more association. This includes taking the new ones out in the field service. It will be good, too, during this period if the elders and ministerial servants become better acquainted with the ones who are newly baptized, perhaps also going in field service with them. We hope the new ones will be attending all the congregation meetings, and will have much pleasure in association with others who are serving as disciples of Christ Jesus.