● Why is it important to finish studying two books thoroughly with new disciples even if they get baptized before the second book is finished?
Jehovah is blessing his organization with an influx of new ones who are flocking to the congregations. We rejoice to see this great ingathering. However, we appreciate that these sheeplike people need continuing assistance and direction in learning to serve Jehovah.
New ones need help to come to an accurate knowledge of the truth. (Col. 1:9, 10) We have the privilege to aid them in gaining a good understanding of basic doctrines of the Bible and a good grasp of what the Bible teaches concerning moral standards, Christian living, and related matters. This will help them to be firmly established in the truth so as to overcome whatever tests may lie ahead.
Students also need to become full-grown in their powers of understanding. (1 Cor. 14:20) Experience has shown that to achieve the stature of a spiritually full-grown man, a personal Bible study with a teacher is helpful. Thus, even though a person may get baptized before completing his study of two books, wisdom dictates that his home Bible study should continue until he has completed the study of both books.
Jesus said we should make disciples—baptizing and teaching them. (Matt. 28:19, 20) Much of the instructing of disciples is done following baptism. The knowledge that a person can get from just one book is not usually sufficient to round out his spiritual training. Additional instruction is needed to fit him for the work of the ministry and equip him to resist the pressures that come upon those who serve Jehovah in these last days. Failure to provide sufficient training may leave the student unprepared spiritually to stand on his own. After a new one is baptized, we continue helping him to make further progress whether he has finished studying two books or not. The first publication studied provides understanding on fundamentals. The second publication covers Christian qualities. These publications may be the Live Forever book and then either the United in Worship book or the True Peace book. If these books are not available, others containing similar information may be used. Continuing the Bible study until the second book is finished provides a sound education in Jehovah’s purposes as well as his high Christian standards and requirements. This helps the new one to understand the meaning of Christian principles and become firmly rooted in the faith. (Col. 2:7) For further details and information on reporting such studies, see the Question Box in the November 1987 Our Kingdom Ministry.
Of course, after baptism new ones should be expected to make spiritual progress. (Heb. 6:1-3) In most cases it does not take long to finish the second book. The new person is thus provided with a solid foundation.