Questions From ReadersThe Watchtower—1964 | November 15
Thus we read that Jesus loved his disciples to the telʹos or end; that at the telʹos or end of his thousand-year reign he will turn the kingdom back to his Father; that Christians will receive the telʹos or end of their faith, the salvation of their souls. Especially noteworthy is the expression that Jehovah is the beginning and the telʹos or end. In none of these instances could we substitute “suffered destruction” for “end,” could we?—John 13:1; 1 Cor. 15:24; 1 Pet. 1:9; Rev. 21:6.
Because of this meaning of telʹos we find it at times rendered variously: as “outcome” at James 5:11; and as “objective” at 1 Timothy 1:5.
As for syntelʹeia, it also does not have any connotation of a destruction. Rather, Vine’s Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words tells us that this word “signifies a bringing to completion together . . . marking the completion or consummation of the various parts of a scheme.” Thus we read at Matthew 13:39 that “the harvest is a conclusion [or syntelʹeia] of a system of things.” Jesus’ disciples asked him about the same “conclusion” or syntelʹeia, and when he finally left them he promised that he would be with them “all the days until the conclusion [or syntelʹeia] of the system of things.”—Matt. 24:3; 28:20.
A related Greek word is the verb synteléo, the rendering of which in the New World Translation may be said to make the same point. Luke used it in saying that the days of Jesus’ fasting had been concluded, and that with Satan’s third temptation he concluded his tempting of Jesus.—Luke 4:2, 13.
Since nowhere do we find these Greek words used in connection with the kósmos, the New World Translation does not use their English equivalents in speaking of the “world,” or kósmos. True, 2 Peter 3:6 does speak of a world, a human society, a kósmos, as suffering destruction, and in that sense it might be said to have come to an end, but only by violence. But Peter here did not mean that the human race at that time had reached its conclusion, its close, its termination or objective.
So we see that in the Scriptures the Greek words telʹos, syntelʹeia and synteléo and their English equivalents do properly apply to a discourse, a reign, a period of service, a system of things or an age, but not to the human race or kósmos, for the human race will not draw to a close; Jehovah God purposed it to last forever, even as will the earth on which it lives. That is why there will be no new kósmos. While a kósmos did suffer destruction at the Flood, it was only the kósmos as it applies to mankind opposed to God. Those that survived could not properly be said to constitute a new kósmos or world, for they had previously existed as part of the pre-Flood kósmos or world for which Christ died.
AnnouncementsThe Watchtower—1964 | November 15
It is the privilege and responsibility of those who have already been liberated from Babylon the Great to help others who are unwilling captives of that wicked empire of oppression to “get out of her.” That you can do during November by sharing in the distribution of the revealing book “Babylon the Great Has Fallen!” God’s Kingdom Rules! It will be placed, along with a Bible-study booklet, for 75c.
1965 YEARBOOK AND CALENDAR
As evidence that Jehovah’s witnesses during the past service year were truly “filled with the holy spirit” and were “speaking the word of God with boldness,” the new 1965 Yearbook of Jehovah’s Witnesses presents a report of preaching activity that surpasses anything done to date. The thrilling experiences recorded of those who have overcome difficulties and hardships to preach the “everlasting good news” will deepen your own faith and incite you to greater works. Obtain your copy. Send 50c. Write for the 1965 calendar also. It is 25c. Both are available after November 23.
“WATCHTOWER” STUDIES FOR THE WEEKS
December 13: Keeping the Organization of Public Servants Pure, Chaste. Page 684.
December 20: How the Organization Should View Chasteness. Page 691.