Shortly before the siege and eventual destruction of Jerusalem, the apostle Paul wrote that Christians, as fine soldiers of Christ, must expect hardship and not give priority to their own comfort and pleasure. (2 Tim. 2:3, 4) With calamity about to overtake this ungodly world, we need strong faith to maintain our focus on spiritual things. (2 Cor. 4:18; 5:7) Watch the video ‘Walk by Faith, Not by Sight.’ (Go to jw.org, and look under PUBLICATIONS > VIDEOS.) Notice how undue attachment to material things became a deadly snare to Naham and Abital. Thereafter, review the following questions.
(1) What was “the disgusting thing . . . standing in a holy place” in the first century, and what decisive action did Christians living in Jerusalem need to take? (Matt. 24:15, 16) (2) Why did fleeing from the city require faith? (3) What sacrifices were involved in fleeing? (4) Why did Naham and Abital delay? (Matt. 24:17, 18) (5) What additional test of faith did Rachel face when leaving Jerusalem? (Matt. 10:34-37; Mark 10:29, 30) (6) How did Ethan set a fine example of faith and trust in Jehovah? (7) What hardships did Christians experience in Pella? (8) How did the faith of Naham and Abital gradually weaken? (9) How did Jehovah care for the Christians living in Pella? (Matt. 6:33; 1 Tim. 6:6-8) (10) How can we imitate Abraham and Sarah as we face the end of this system of things? (Heb. 11:8-10) (11) How did Naham and Abital convince themselves to return to Jerusalem, and why was their thinking faulty? (Luke 21:21) (12) What was the reality of life in Jerusalem when Naham and Abital returned? (13) Why must we strengthen our faith now
Walking by faith means (1) trusting in Jehovah’s direction, (2) letting his direction guide our steps, and (3) showing that we value spiritual things over material things. May we be ever resolved to walk by faith, trusting that “the world is passing away and so is its desire, but the one who does the will of God remains forever.”