Help People to Listen to God
1. What brochures were released at the “Let God’s Kingdom Come!” District Convention, and what makes them such useful tools?
1 At the “Let God’s Kingdom Come!” District Convention, two new brochures were released, Listen to God and Live Forever and a simplified version, Listen to God. Because they have little text, they can be translated quickly and easily. In fact, Listen to God and Live Forever was approved to be translated into 431 languages on its release.
2. Who will benefit from these brochures?
2 Who in particular will benefit from these brochures? Consider the following scenarios that arise frequently around the world:
• A publisher having a discussion with a householder, either on the initial call or on a return visit, discerns that the householder is illiterate or reads poorly.
• A publisher preaches to people who speak a language that we have translated few or no publications into. Or most in the territory are unable to read the language they are most comfortable speaking.
• A publisher uses sign language to preach to the deaf in his territory.
• A parent desires to teach the truth to his young child who does not yet know how to read.
3. How was Listen to God designed?
3 How They Were Designed: Listen to God has very little text—generally just a simple sentence and a Scripture citation at the bottom of each page that highlights the main points. Why? Imagine that someone offered you a brochure that is written in a language you cannot read, perhaps with characters that are foreign to you. Would it be of interest to you, even if it contained beautiful illustrations? Likely not. Similarly, people who cannot read are easily intimidated by publications that have text. Therefore, prominent on each page are carefully prepared illustrations with arrows to guide the discussion from one illustration to the next.
4. How was Listen to God and Live Forever designed?
4 Listen to God and Live Forever has the same illustrations as Listen to God. It has been designed to study with those who have limited reading ability or are learning to read. This brochure can also be used as a teacher’s copy when studying with someone out of the Listen to God brochure. At the top left corner of each two-page lesson is a question that is answered on those pages. Included with the illustrations are comments and cited scriptures. Toward the bottom corner of many of the pages is a shaded box with some additional points and Scripture citations that could be discussed, depending on the ability of the student.
5. When and how may we offer these brochures?
5 How to Use Them: You may offer either brochure in the house-to-house ministry whenever you feel it is beneficial to do so, even when brochures are not the offer for the month. (See the box “How They May Be Offered.”) You could introduce it on a return visit by simply telling the interested person that you have something to show him and handing him a brochure.
6. How will we conduct a Bible study using these brochures?
6 Since Listen to God does not have printed questions, the discussions will not be question-and-answer sessions such as you might normally have when studying out of the Bible Teach book. In every culture people enjoy hearing stories. So use the illustrations to tell the inspired stories that make up the Bible record. Explain what is being illustrated. Be enthusiastic. Invite the observations of the student. Read the scriptures at the bottom of the page, and reason with him on what they say. Ask questions to involve him in the discussion and to make sure he understands. If he is using Listen to God and Live Forever, read together the corresponding text and scriptures when discussing each illustration.
7. How can we help our Bible student to progress?
7 Help the Student to Progress: Hopefully, your discussion will awaken in your student a desire to learn how to read so that he can take in knowledge of Jehovah on his own. (Matt. 5:3; John 17:3) Therefore, if the discussions are from Listen to God, in time perhaps you can offer to teach the student how to read, and you can transfer the study to Listen to God and Live Forever. Regardless of the brochure you use, the student will not be ready for baptism once the brochure has been completed. You should transfer the study to the Bible Teach book or another appropriate publication that will give him a more rounded-out understanding of the Bible.
8. Why are you thankful for these new tools for the ministry?
8 People must listen to the Sovereign of the universe if they are to live forever. (Isa. 55:3) And Jehovah’s will is that “all sorts of men,” including those who are unable to read, learn how to listen to him. (1 Tim. 2:3, 4) How thankful we are for these new tools that we can use to teach people how to listen to God!
[Box on page 3]
How They May Be Offered
Show the householder pages 2-3, and say: “Would you like to live in a world that looks like this? [Allow for response.] The Scriptures promise [or, this holy book promises] that God will soon make the world a beautiful, peaceful place where no one is poor or sick. Notice what we must do to live there. [Read Isaiah 55:3, which is cited at the top of page 3.] This tells us to ‘come to’ God and ‘listen’ to him. But how do we listen to God?” Turn to pages 4-5, and discuss the answer with him. If he does not have time, leave the brochure with him and make arrangements to return and discuss the answer.