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  1. Can't believe I'm writing this post, but in light of events in Russia, and an expectation of things to come, I think it's prudent to prepare ourselves mentally for what may come. Here are a few tricks that have been used before: (Note: The examples are based on experiences I remember, with some changes made to fit the point I'm making) 1) The Prisoners Dilemma. They know we hold onto each other, so it's not uncommon to split us up; and even claim that the other guy has turned on us. Cops use it all the time to trick a confession out of a criminal with accomplices. Example: "It's okay, you can salute the flag. We talked to your parents, and they say it's alright to do that." Protection: Have set in your mind where you stand. Remember that they can't split you off from God. Bothers put in solitary confinement say that it's easier because it gives them time to pray, and protection from other prisoners. 2) "You Make Me Do This." Our brothers in Russia are being tormented for things like names, and phone keycodes. Every time they say 'no', they get asked the question again, rougher. If someone ever tries to put the blame on you, just remember that it's the same reasoning every abusive husband has used on a battered wife. "This is your own fault." Example: During WW2, a Gestapo man approached a, imprisoned JW with a gun, and then presents him with his wife and kid. Gestapo man orders the Brother to pick which one will get shot. Our brother refuses. The G Man says "Pick, or I shoot both." Our brother stays cool as ice and says "Double Homicide is your choice. Refusing to take the blame for the gun in your hand is my choice." Protection: Remember that by trying to assign blame to us, they are also trying to absolve themselves. Remember that we don't sit in judgement on anyone; that's God's job. We aren't Judge or Jury; we're Witnesses. 3) "You've Been Brainwashed." They can quote a hundred scriptures, and twist anything you say, to poke a hole in your beliefs. Example: When on trial in Russia, the NWT was banned for not conforming to the state sponsored religion, despite the fact that it was a bible, just like the ones the Russian Orthodox Church uses. Protection: Remember, that even in countries where we're not being persecuted yet, we're being reminded not to bother with 'lukewarm' interest. If they're persecuting us outright, I think it's safe to say they aren't genuinely interested in debating the finer points of bible teaching. If they're putting the question to you in a prison cell, it's not a debate; nor is it a study. You don't have to defend yourself to them. Remember, Jesus Christ himself was silent before his accusers when he knew there was nothing worth saying. 4) "You're Going To Die In Here." Rule Number One in a high stress situation: Time is a weapon. If you're the one being held prisoner, they will use it against you. It takes less than 21 days to break a habit, or grow accustomed to new surroundings. I was once in hospital for a few months, and by the three week mark, I couldn't remember what my bedroom back home looked like. Example: Too many to count. How long did Joseph spend in jail? Or Paul? Or any of the Apostles? How much of the bible was penned in a prison cell? Protection: Persecution is bad. Death is bad. It's also temporary. Something the other side can't say. In some places, being in jail is safer than being on the streets. (And during GT, the world will be coming apart) Speaking for myself, the country I live in is unlikely to launch full scale persecution until GT; but seeing the Tribulation unfold will conquer any lingering doubts or uncertainties about the Truth that I could ever have. They can threaten us with a 30 year prison sentence after the Cry of Peace and Security, and then wonder why we're all laughing at them. Our brothers in the Camps didn't know when the war would end, or how; but if they had known at the time, it'd be a source of terrific endurance to know that they were likely to outlive their jailers by many years. Other Important Points: "Worthy to be Dishonored." Several brothers have stated that in some ways, it was easier to stay faithful under trial, because the choice was black and white. We've lost more people to the lure of Big Screen TV's than we ever did to the Nazis. "Keep your eye simple." Don't be intimidated by numbers, or by the scale of what's coming. Military parades, national propaganda, even the design of cities is designed to humble opposition and intimidate us. But as overwhelming as the odds may be, the whole world put together is nothing compared to Jehovah. When Gideon marched with his army, God told him to trim down his army to 300 men. Going against thousands and thousands. At the last talk of the District last year, one speaker at my convention said: "JW's are outnumbered 850 to one by worldly people. Brothers, those are the kind of odds Jehovah can work with." "God won't let you be tested beyond what you can bear." If you can't take it, you won't have to. Everything that happens to us happens at God's sufferance; down to, and including the amount of pain we feel. There have been multiple reports of that kind of protection. "Cross The Red Sea." This is a showdown between the world, and heaven. It has very little to do with us and our actions. We don't have to win anything, because the winner was decided long before we came onto the scene. Every world power in Daniel's prophecy has come against God at some point, and none of them have prevailed. We aren't expected to fight back, to outsmart anyone, or to get the last word. We tell ourselves that we could never be like Moses. We don't have to be. A million Hebrews crossed the Red Sea, and that's all we need for ourselves. "Fear No Evil." The GB has, quite correctly, made the point that a hundred Russian brothers are in detention. That leaves over a hundred thousand that are not. Sometimes it's scarier to be chased than to be caught. A black car parked outside your house can be more intimidating than a large cell with two dozen of your fellow brothers locked up alongside you. Remember that when facing trials and tests, you're never on your own. All you have to do is trust God to fix the problem, and in the interim we only have to say 'No, I won't' one time more than they say 'Yes, you will'. "Nor will ever occur again." The brothers in the camps during WW2 were all free by 1946. They didn't know when the war would end. They couldn't be sure who would win. And they didn't know what would be left for them to go back to once the dust settled. The duration of their endurance was a lot longer than their persecution. Our generation has the unique privileged of knowing that once the dust settles from our trial, it'll be a thousand years before we ever have to face anything remotely like it again. Imagine being in those Camps in WW2, and being the only person who knows exactly when the war will end, and what will become of the guards beating you. What a source of endurance that would be. "Eyes on the Prize." This one seems obvious, but remember that 'Enduring to the End' has a double meaning for us; because what's ending in our case isn't a war, or a government, or a prison term. it's so much bigger than that. Because once it's over, nobody in the world will ever be persecuted again. There won't be anyone left to try their hand at Totalitarianism or Fascism or Slavery. Not ever again. We are, quite literally, the last people who will ever have to endure persecution.
    86 points
  2. For a little bit of history, the domain name www.jwtalk.net was registered on September 4th, 2006, which was 15 years ago this month. We started as a members only forum for local friends in local congregations using a freeware script called MyBB. Not before long, it lost it's initial traction. Then, a previous JW Forum was taken offline and so we made the effort to invite those abandoned forum refugees to join over here instead. We eventually switched to a freeware script called Phorum and couldn't migrate the MyBB database. Once Facebook became available to the public in general, activity in the Phorum suffered tremendously, and so we decided to abandon the referral-only approach and go Public, allowing search engines like Google to find us and index our content and promoting the forum in various JW Facebook groups. This worked out well, and membership in the JWTalk Online Community of Jehovah's Witnesses began to grow. As other JW Forums, MSN Email Lists, and Yahoo Groups, were discontinued, their members found their way here. Today, JWTalk.net is known to be the largest and busiest, and for many the one and only pro-JW community on the internet. We rigorously vet new member applications and work diligently to keep unqualified, apostate, and opposed individuals out and our boards clean of their harmful propaganda. With the help of our loving brothers and sisters here in the community, we've seen publishers dedicated themselves to Jehovah through water baptism. We've seen members who were struggling emotionally encouraged and strengthened by the Christian love they've received from brothers and sisters who may be on the opposite sides of the globe. We've seen members struggling spiritually grow and now they are the ones encouraging others by their fine comments. Many of us have travelled and met other members face to face and sat next to them at their Kingdom Halls. The community has been a blessing during the pandemic as we have been able to enjoy good association with one another any time of day. “Look! How good and how pleasant it is For brothers to dwell together in unity!” Psalm 133:1 Of course, none of this would work if it wasn't for your love for Jehovah and for your brothers and sisters. Let us continue to "have love for the whole association of brothers (and sisters!)" - 1 Peter 2:17 YOU are what makes this community wonderful, because YOU love Jehovah, YOU love your spiritual family (his organization), and YOU have his blessing.
    83 points
  3. Moderator note: We have decided this topic is a wonderful idea and wish to expand it to include all our members. If you would like to show your appreciation for a certain member and want everyone to know, please feel free to post it here. Dilp Kumar started off with his appreciation for our friend Neil - Beggar for the Spirit. This thread is a small token of love and appreciation for you dear brother. I am grateful to each brother and sister on this forum but especially to you for all your Christian efforts to encourage us and read our post very very carefully and take time to mediate and take time to research and take time to highlight and post according to our needs. A great privilege to be with persons like you dear brother who love because they imitate jah a little more and are full of love and humbleness. Though I am miles apart from you , your posts have brought smiles to many all over. I sometimes do what I feel is right and my conscious says that to post my personal feelings for you is justified. Pls keep up the goodwork of loving and encouraging us. Our prayers for you. Sent from my SM-G7102 using Tapatalk
    73 points
  4. We had a foreshortened meeting tonight. A brother and his wife from the Russian branch visited us. We have a pretty small Russian group that meets at our hall, so it was so encouraging to see that they sent a shepherd to the brothers who spoke in their native tongue. He was interviewed by 1 of our elders, and explained a lot of what we heard tonight, about the seizing and liquidation. He tells us that all the brothers and sisters at bethel were given a shepherding call individually, and congregations were sent letters of instruction prior to the announcement, of what they were going to do and where. He said that each Field Service Group were instructed to meet at a publishers home, and that many had already graciously offered up their residences. Reminds me of the video at our last convention taking place in the great tribulation. And the importance of being at our meetings! He was calm and collected about the whole thing, but I heard him begin to choke up about losing their hall, how the brothers there at bethel will be sent to branch offices in other countries and some will stay and maintain the properties (I assume until they are seized). He quickly composed himself when our speaker asked what he'll be leaving behind. He said, "my car and an empty room" and smiled. Such is the importance to keep our eye simple. It was a wonderful part and I really wanted to share.
    72 points
  5. Omoyeme

    To My Sisters

    This past weekend's WT study (09/2019) reminded me of an illustration I'd like to share with you that a dear friend sent to me recently. It's entitled: Never, Ever Give Up...Never Quit! Be an *Esther * Bold and courageous enough to stand for the TRUTH; to voice your opinion and fight for the good of others, even when it means to sacrifice yourself. If Jehovah has put you in a position, it is for a purpose. Never be afraid to heed to that inner voice. Be a *Ruth* Loyal in all your relationships, walk the extra mile and don't quit when things get tough. Someday, you'll see why it was all worth the effort. Be a *Lydia* Let your homes be open, let your hands be generous, let your hearts be big enough to help those in need. Joy is greatest when shared. Be a *Hannah* Never cease to pray...for it will never be in vain. Be a *Mary* Humble and submissive. You don't have to be great for Jehovah to use you; you just need humility and obedience. Be a *Dorcus* Use your talents, however small it may seem to bring a smile on someone's face. You'll never know how much it can mean to someone. Be an *Abigail* Remember how each decision can turn your life around for good or bad. Be wise. Be an *Elizabeth * Never doubt what Jehovah can do. He is the God of many miracles. Be a *Rebekah* Never forget that true beauty lies within. Draw all your loved ones closer to Jehovah through Christ-like character. Lastly, be a *Sarah* Age doesn't matter. Trust and believe that all things are possible with Jehovah God, according to His time. Be encouraged my sisters...and be strong!
    67 points
  6. 60 points
  7. Lance

    Welcome 3 New Moderators

    Hi Everyone We would like everyone to welcome three new moderators to our team.. The forum is growing, and we are going through interesting times in this world. We felt we could use a few more hands on deck to look after our growing family, and dealing with some challenges that we are all facing at this juncture in history. Please welcome three beautiful, spiritual sisters to our team, to help keep us safe and strong. Jennifer / Ludwicka - from New Zealand. Ross / Friends just call me Ross - from Michigan, USA. Cheryl / bagwell1987 - Westcoast of USA
    57 points
  8. I just saw this topic now, but before reading it, I was not sure exactly what it was about? Brother Dilip, you are very thoughtful and thank you for your kind words and encouragement to me and many others. And Vernalee, that was touching what you wrote, so thank you also. I really like the title "Appreciating Our Members" because I think each brother/sister here on JWtalk has more value than they know. I say this because each of you may not know how certain thoughts you express in your posts or PMs are like a generous "donation"! When each of us give financial donations, like giving to the "Worldwide Work", you and I may have no idea how the money was used or who benefited from it? But someone definitely benefited from the specific donation we gave! It is the same with each brother/sister here on JWtalk! Every time each of you post something, do you know that very likely someone benefited from your kind "donation"? Because these posts are read by many, many people, even many who joined JWtalk but rarely or never post, but yet they read your posts! And then many of us have read the posts but forget at times to hit the "Like" button, so sometimes this could cause each of us to think that hardly anyone read our post or liked our post. But if your post confirmed some spiritual truth for another brother/sister, then your "donation" affected someone! If your post expressed a beautiful quality like modesty or humility, then your "donation" affected someone! If you were a peace maker in a discussion, then your "donation" affected someone! And especially if in some way you lifted our Father Jehovah a little higher in the eyes of another by your words of awe about Him, then your "donation" affected someone! Even if the only person that was affected by your words was Jehovah! Notice this very encouraging thought below which we can truly apply to all of our discussions and posts here on JWtalk! Because Jehovah takes notice of every single word and thought we express, not just verbally, but even written! Jehovah doesn't pay attention only to our comments at meetings or only talks/parts we have during a meeting, but He also takes note every time you write about Him, or post about His son, or about His many other sons, and about each other here! And our Father even takes note of our private thoughts that we wanted to post, but were unable! "At that time those who fear Jehovah spoke(or posted) with one another, each one with his companion, and Jehovah kept paying attention and listening. And a book of remembrance was written before him for those fearing Jehovah and for those meditating on his name" (Malachi 3:16) *** w12 12/1 p. 11 Are You in God’s “Book of Remembrance”? *** Note that those God-fearing individuals “spoke with one another.” Evidently they got together to speak well of Jehovah and encourage one another, lest they become disheartened or tainted by the corruption around them. *** w12 12/1 p. 11 Are You in God’s “Book of Remembrance”? *** Malachi says: “Jehovah kept paying attention and listening.” From his lofty abode in heaven, Jehovah, in effect, inclined his ear and heard every word of praise that his worshippers spoke to one another. He also paid attention to all their private meditations. (Psalm 94:11) But he did more than just pay attention to their good words and thoughts. “A book of remembrance began to be written up before him,” notes Malachi. That book is a record of all those who have served Jehovah in integrity. Notice that it is called “a book of remembrance.” That tells us that Jehovah will never forget his faithful worshippers and all that they have done to praise him—every good deed, word, and thought(even if the word or thought was written in a post on JWtalk ).
    55 points
  9. jwhess

    Love or criticism?

    I have noticed that in recent times Christian love and civility are being strained. Look at some of the threads and posts in various subjects. Someone will make a comment and the observers take sides. Not just commenting but taking the person to task over the post. If I say “Great Crowd” in a post, someone will have to point out that these people only exist after Armageddon. That riposte will generate a counter attack with a Watchtower quote saying it’s used as a generic term, and so on. Supposedly on this forum, we are all the “good-guys” and the opposers are the ones “out-there” in the world. In the western movie scenario, we have ‘circled the wagons’ to protect us against the Indian attack (apologies to my first nation, aboriginal, etc friends). Inside the wagon circle, we are supposed to be supportive, caring, defending and so on. Instead, these hardy pioneers are squabbling about spelling, counting, typos, limited research, forms, levity, personal attacks and so on. Satan does not have to assault us to get us to fall, we trip over our own feet. I like accuracy as much as the next researcher but is it life-threatening? We make all kinds of allowances for children. *** w94 5/15 p. 12 par. 11 Parents, Your Children Need Specialized Attention *** One couple listened while their three-year-old asked God to bless “Wally.” He prayed for “Wally” on succeeding nights, and the parents were greatly encouraged when they realized that he meant the brothers in Malawi, then suffering persecution. If that poor kid had posted here he might have received a smile if he was under 12 years of age, but a much different response if he was 20. What happened to the kind, loving appreciation for a good effort? Suggestions (even counsel) can be applied if necessary but can we avoid being critical? Human nature is with us always, but how we apply the new personality is a choice. I hope all of our forum participants can upgrade their research and comments but I want to apply tolerance to those who have not reached my exalted level of competence…❤️
    54 points
  10. 50 points
  11. Here is a sneak peek at what the 2017 Memorial invitation looks like: In addition, here is the cover of the Watchtower that we will offer during March in conjunction with the Memorial invitation:
    49 points
  12. These last days in Spain JWs are all over the place in the media. Why, maybe they are exposing the way our brothers are being persecuted and tortured in Russia? No, most of the media have been almost completely silent about that. But they are happily advertizing the story of a young sister who is in a critical situation in the hospital because she won't accept a blood transfusion which apparently would safe her life without any doubt. Unfortunately I haven't found any newspaper in English which covers this story. This is one link in Spanish, but if you search for "testigos de Jehová sangre huesca" you'll find hundreds of articles. https://www.eldiario.es/aragon/Sale-Jehova-Huesca-convencerla-trasfusion_0_881912722.html Liliana, 20 year old, went to the ER with strong pain in her abdomen. She was diagnosed with peritonitis and had surgery done. Although the operation went well, she was very weak and had lost a lot of blood, so the doctors decided to induce her a coma to help her recover. But when the doctor decided to give her a blood transfusion, it came to light that she had registered legally her decision not to receive any blood as one of Jehovah's Witnesses. Her parents, who are not Witnesses, tried by all means to have the doctors administer the blood, and they even called a judge, but the judge said the girl is an adult and the document is legal so her wishes must be respected. The media didn't miss any chance to criticize the "cult" that had condemned Liliana to death. There were debates everywhere on tv. A few days later Liliana woke up from her sleep and was so surprised to see of all the circus created around her. She said her situation was not, by far, as critical as the media has made it seem. She was weak and needed some rest. She dismissed all the journalists and asked her family to cancel all their scheduled appearances on tv. She's feeling better every day and hopefully will soon be out of danger. After all, it seems that blood transfusion wasn't so necessary. Wow, the media distorting the facts? Who would have believed it!
    48 points
  13. I just wanted to express my gratitude for the creators, moderators and everyone that contribute to this fine site. I work in a very highly career focused corporate office where everything is very cut-throat/negative - the usual garbage in the world. Unfortunately, being the only JW here at work can sometimes make me feel alone. But when I feel that way I like to login here and just get some refreshment, knowing that I am not the only one that struggles everyday. Of course the go-to guide is the Bible and literature but also nice to be here and get built-up too. Thanks again my brothers.
    48 points
  14. Just wanted to share something that happened to me a couple nights ago. Earlier in the evening I had texted "thank you" to my service overseer for sending me my talk slip for August. Later that evening my daughter wanted some eggs to make a dessert. I opened my text screen and texted my husband "Bring Eggs". Immediately after pressing the send button I realized I had texted my field service overseer. I failed to get out of the screen when I texted the "thank you for the talk slip" earlier in the day. It was 9:36pm at night. I said oops and texted him back immediately saying "Sorry this was meant for my husband, LoL". Then of course I texted my husband to bring eggs. My daughter and I got a kick out of the boo boo I made. Around 10:38pm hubby was pulling up to the house from going to the grocery store and heard a horn honking at him. The brother gave him a carton of eggs and said I got the message to bring eggs that your wife meant for you so I brought some over. When my husband came in the house he said "I have the eggs you texted Brother X for" and was laughing. The brother told him the story and hubby couldn't resist teasing me. My daughter and I fell out laughing because after I accidentally sent the message I said it would be funny if he actually brought some over. 🤣 We laughed a long time. I then texted the brother and thanked him and asked how much I owed him? He said nothing just wanted to make us laugh. Him and his wife are so sweet and they couldn't pass up the opportunity to get a laugh out of us. 😂 Only in Jehovah's organization can you put out a call late at night and Jehovah responses through others 🤭
    47 points
  15. Once upon a time there was a rich King who had four wives. He loved the 4th wife the most and adored her with rich robes and treated her to the finest of delicacies. He gave her nothing but the best. He also loved the 3rd wife very much and was always showing her off to neighboring kingdoms. However, he feared that one day she would leave him for another. He also loved his 2nd wife. She was his confidant and was always kind, considerate and patient with him. Whenever the King faced a problem, he could confide in her, and she would help him get through the difficult times. The King’s 1st wife was a very loyal partner and had made great contributions in maintaining his wealth and kingdom. However, he did not love the first wife. Although she loved him deeply, he hardly took notice of her. One day, the King fell ill and he knew his time was short. He thought of his luxurious life and wondered, I now have four wives with me, but when I die, I’ll be all alone. Thus, he asked the 4th wife , “I loved you the most, endowed you with the finest clothing and showered great care over you. Now that I’m dying, will you follow me and keep me company?” “No way!”, replied the 4th wife, and she walked away without another word. Her answer cut like a sharp knife right into his heart. The sad King then asked the 3rd wife, “I loved you all my life. Now that I’m dying,will you follow me and keep me company?” “No!”, replied the 3rd wife. “Life is too good! When you die, I’m going to remarry!” His heart sank and turned cold. He then asked the 2nd wife, “I have always turned to you for help and you’ve always been there for me. When I die, will you follow me and keep me company? “I’m sorry, I can’t help you out this time!”, replied the 2nd wife. “At the very most,I can only walk with you to your grave. Her answer struck him like a bolt of lightning, and the King was devastated. Then a voice called out: “I’ll go with you. I’ll follow you no matter where you go.” The King looked up, and there was his first wife. She was very skinny as she suffered from malnutrition and neglect. Greatly grieved, the King said, “I should have taken much better care of you when I had the chance!” In truth, we all have the 4 wives in our lives: Our 4th wife is our body. No matter how much time and effort we lavish in making it look good, it will leave us when we die. Our 3rd wife is our possessions, status and wealth.When we die, it will all go to others. Our 2nd wife is our family and friends. No matter how much they have been there for us, the furthest they can stay by us is up to the grave. And our 1st wife is our relationship with Jehovah. Often neglected in pursuit of wealth, power & pleasures of the world. However, it is the only thing that will follow us where ever we go. Cultivate, strengthen and cherish it now, for even when we die, it is the only thing that will certainly continue to exist - in the living record of Jehovah’s memory.
    47 points
  16. This image comes from jw.org. Here is the link: https://assetsnffrgf-a.akamaihd.net/assets/m/202017161/E/art/202017161_E_cnt_2_xl.jpg I just couldn't not share this. How awesome is this front cover?! How do you think we'll go offering this in the ministry?
    46 points
  17. Hope


    Shared with me today: This is really worth reading, so interesting 😊 This is a very interesting summary of what has happened to us! Changes Think….what if…. Imagine 15 months ago, we are at our Sunday meeting and the brothers have a letter to read from the Branch. They say after the WT we will make an announcement and nobody should leave til this letter is read. The Brother begins to read the letter “Starting today…… All Kingdom halls will be closed globally! World headquarters closed. All tours canceled. All Bethel branches closed globally no one in or out! All International Conventions canceled! All Regional Conventions canceled. All Assembly Halls closed! All Theocratic schools and facilities SKE , Gilead closed no one in or out. All Pioneer schools, Branch schools, Elders schools canceled. All LDC construction projects canceled all LDC workers cannot travel home. All baptisms no longer held at Assemblies or Conventions only in a private setting, your congregation cannot attend live! All those currently attending Gilead school cannot return to their countries. All those in special full-time service must shelter in their homes. Stop all public witnessing no door-to-door, return visits, cart work, Special Metropolitan work, cruise witnessing, prison witnessing all forms of public witnessing!! Stop going to your Bible studies homes. All Travel stopped! All vacations stopped! All cruise ships/cruises canceled! All public and private schools closed! All sports events canceled! Olympics canceled! Broadway shows canceled! All Theaters, museums are closed! Restaurant inside dining closed! All wedding receptions canceled. From now on starting today you must wear a mask whenever you leave your house! Over 17,000 of you will die of a global pandemic. If your family members, your mother, your father, your child gets this virus you cannot visit them in the hospital, you cannot say goodbye to them as they’re dying!! In some locations in the world your family will be buried in a mass grave because they’ve run out of caskets and burial plots!! No visiting your friends in their homes, no visitors allowed in your home! If one of your parents are in a nursing home you cannot visit them again! There will also be 204 natural disasters just in the year 2020. SO ………if a letter like that was read to the congregations, Would we faint out of fear, would we have a nervous breakdown, would we cry inconsolably, would we run to the bathroom and get sick to our stomachs? There is a reason Jehovah does not give us all the details of Armageddon ahead of time. He knows with his help we can get through anything…. just look back these past 14 months and be reminded of what we accomplished even with the above list of horrible things. We never missed a meeting, a Memorial, a C.A. a Convention. We didn’t miss a month without reporting our field service. Never missed a circuit overseer’s visit. Elders never missed their elder’s meetings. Even pioneer schools got re-scheduled on Zoom. Never had to cancel our Bible studies. Never missed a monthly broadcast, just to name a few. So Jehovah knows what we can bear and what we can’t. He didn’t prevent what was coming but he protected us spiritually . He had his organization give us G.B. updates regularly to keep us informed and reminders for staying safe. Thank you Jehovah for sparing us unnecessary anxiety. “I still have many things to say to you, but you are not able to bear them now.” John 16:12
    45 points
  18. Some friends have understood that video as saying we should not use any JW apps or websites that are not from the Organization. But what the video actually said is "Be cautious when using them". No app and no website should be our source of spiritual food other than the Slave's. This site doesn't try to be a source of spiritual food. It's just a place for Witnesses to meet other Witnesses and have nice discussions. The moderators work hard to keep the site clean from any bad influences. But of course we should always be cautious, don't believe everything we read (even if it comes from a fellow JW) and reject (and report!) anything that sounds apostate.
    45 points
  19. 2EVES

    Our God of Style

    I've just received this beautiful experience: From Bro. Enock Makowa , Zimbabwe Morning all, How wonderful it is that Jehovah has done it in style all over the world in support of his servants. In Zimbabwe because of the difficult economic situation, many of our brothers cant't buy expensive data for their mobiles to be on the stream or zoom. But, for the first time in that country, the memorial talk will be shown on the only TV station controlled by the government and also on many radio stations around the country. so imagine millions of Zimbabweans on lockdown and having to watch or listen to the memorial in their homes even without an invitation. Why worry when Jehovah has everything under control. "Keep calm and trust in Jehovah" Enjoy the Memorial!
    44 points
  20. When I was a kid, I had a small group of friends I’d regularly hang out with. One of which was one little sister that I will call “J” for privacy reasons. She was the youngest in our group which, according to kid logic, means she’s a baby. I believe I’m 3-4 years older than her. You know how kids think; someone who is even one year younger than you is a baby, and someone a year plus older than you is basically a demigod. So I know I didn’t treat J the best since I viewed her as an annoying little kid. Yet, despite my snotty behavior, J always treated me with kindness and love. Even after she moved out of NY, she would send me letters, drawings and pictures. She didn’t forget about me, and showed how much she loved me. The last time I heard from her, she was 11 years old. Eventually, my parents separated, and my mother and I moved out of NY, and I lost contact with J. I couldn’t stop thinking about J. It didn’t take me long after that to realize how wrong I was in how I treated her. And out of all my friends, she was the most faithful, spiritual, and sweetest. She was the best friend I’ve ever had, and I not only treated her poorly, but now I lost contact with her so I couldn’t even apologize. I felt terrible. For the next years, while moving from Maine to South Carolina, I went on a search for J. I tried looking her up, desperately searching for a hint of where she could be. However, I always found a dead end, and I’d get disheartened and give up. This cycle would continue until I moved back to NY in 2012. As some of you may know, this is around the time period where I went on an intense mental journey, hospitalization, and recovery. I went through poor decisions, getting in trouble, went through a few failed relationships, and trying to understand who I really am. Only fairly recently have I gotten confident enough to figure out how my minds works, and coming to terms with a lot of things about me. Jehovah has shown me many times the way he answers my prayers is slowly in a crazy domino effect. I think he does that to prove to me that it is really Him that helped me, and not just by some chance. He did that when I had to go to court against my father, when he helped me take care of the aftermath of when my beloved Cooper passed away, when getting my next dog who was exactly what I’ve been wanting for years, and with financial aid for something I was struggling with since 2010. So hold onto your hats for this next domino effect. I recently decided to give my mother another chance. We’ve had a super strained relationship, and for years we didn’t talk to each other. But after some time, having one on one chats, and me finding some confidence I decided to be less angry and try being friendly towards my mom. A month ago, we went to the store together (which we hadn’t done in 8+ years), and I saw a book called “The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up”. I heard great things about the author, and I was looking at it when my mom noticed me eyeballing it. She asked if I wanted to get it, and I said no because I don’t like admitting I want material things. But she ignored me, and bought me the book anyway. After reading it, I felt motivated to do a deep cleaning of my room. So last week I was following the rules of the book, and I was able to throw away about 10 garbage bags full of stuff. My room felt lighter, and my mental state improved dramatically. (Side note: highly recommend reading that book and doing a deep clean for those who want to improve mentally). The book explained when throwing away things, save your sentimental items for last because that’s going to be the most difficult things to go through. And friends, I’m a hoarder when it comes to sentimental stuff. I can’t seem to throw away gifts or items that remind me of a happier time with friends and family. But after taking some stress pills, putting on some relaxing music, and my Millie (dog) at my side, I tackled all of my sentimental collection. The last thing I took down was a box I had in my closest of stuff from my freshmen year of high school and back. Among the notes I used to pass in school, art projects, and yearbooks were a little bundle of letters. When I opened them up, I saw they were all from J. I had saved all of J’s letters and drawings, and I was so happy to see them again. On the back of one letter was her old address (after she moved), a phone number, and her mom’s email. My heart started racing. I figured the phone number and mailing address would probably lead to a dead end, but I thought maybe the email would still work. I said a prayer, and then wrote a message to her mom explaining who I am, and I’m reaching out to reconnect again. Also I did some Google searches of the mailing address and phone number to see if there was any clues there, but there wasn’t any. After waiting for a bit, I figured the email might not pan out to anything since it was a Hotmail account. And who the heck uses Hotmail anymore! I tried once more to look up J’s name, but I couldn’t find a single thing. I was about to give up when I had a thought. (It was probably Jehovah tapping me on the head saying, “hold up”). Maybe if I look up the mom’s name instead, I’d have a better chance of finding results. Sure enough, that was the key. I immediately found her Instagram, and I nearly screamed. I quickly made myself an Instagram account (something I never thought I’d do lol), followed her and sent her a message through there. I was begging Jehovah for them to see my message and reply back to me. Couple hours later I got two notifications: (1) her mom replied to my message, and she said she remembered me, and (2) J requesting to follow me with a message attached. I was hysterically crying. I had found her! After all these years, I found my childhood friend! The three of us talked and cried, catching up on what happened in our lives and being so happy to find each other again. One of the first things I did was apologize to J and her mom. I said I was so sorry that I was such a nasty little kid, and that I treated J unfairly. They both said they only had good memories of me, and J understood that it was kid logic as well. To my surprise, she had been looking for me too. Once we lost contact, she never stopped thinking about me and worried what could have happened. We were so relieved to hear from each other again. I’m not one to go looking for people, especially in my past. I have no interest, mainly because I’m a loner introvert. But out of everyone in my life, I wanted to find J. I knew she’d still be in the truth, and be just as wonderful as an adult as she was as a kid. I’ve ran into some of my other childhood friends, and they’re no longer in the truth and not people I’d want to associate with. Yet I knew J would still be solid, and I was right. She’s became a beautiful woman who serves Jehovah faithfully, and she’s extremely sweet. She’s also married, and she’s a mom now! And her little girl looks exactly like J when she was a kid. I’ve been in amazement and disbelief this week that I reconnected with J again, and I had to tell everyone because of how happy I am. I’m so thankful to Jehovah for helping me find J and giving me the chance to give her that long awaited apology she deserved so many years ago. I hope this story brings you friends some positivity and reassurance that Jehovah answers prayers in due time. Don’t give up, friends! Keep moving forward!
    44 points
  21. First and foremost, we want our members to always follow their Bible-trained conscience. If their conscience moves them to either discontinue their membership here or not join such a website, that is their decision and we commend them for keeping their relationship with Jehovah safe. We feel we are complying with the direction the Faithful Slave has given us and our consciences permit us to continue to maintain and use this social media discussion board. This website is not now, nor ever been, a replacement for the official channel of Jesus feeding his sheep by means of the congregation. This group should never be viewed as a acceptable substitute for attending congregation meetings and associating with the members of your local congregation. We are a social media group. We view our association here as if we were at a social gathering of Jehovah's people. Those gatherings are also never viewed as a substitute for association at and within the congregation. Over the years we have repeatedly reminded our members that the Slave has given us sound direction and left the final decision up to us as individuals. The reality is there are no social media websites approved by the Faithful Slave. None. All social media groups such as Witness groups on Facebook, Instagram, or elsewhere are also not endorsed or recommended by the Faithful Slave. You will never see a Facebook or Instagram Witness group referenced in the Watchtower publications. We strive to keep this website a place of safe and wholesome association. Occasionally a troublemaker will slip through but we are quick to remove such individuals when they become identified. While you don't really know any of us, we hope that our conversations will reveal our personalities and help you come to know us as friends and family. Granted, it is easy to hide one's identity online and you may never really know someone you've never met face to face, but we work to do our best to reveal our true nature. We have a very strong and talented group of spiritually mature brothers and sisters overseeing the association of this large party. The private information we ask of our members is the same that they would put on their lapel badge for the convention. We do not ask for exact address nor phone number. We are vigilant to make sure nobody is on here preying on our members and attempting to fleece the flock and violate your privacy. If anyone or anything on here ever makes you uncomfortable, please notify a moderator. Each post has a link to "report" the post for any inappropriate behavior. We are a global staff and there most likely is always a moderator online. We have discussed this matter on other occasions, here are links to some of those: https://jwtalk.net/topic/40329-social-media-facebook-groups-for-jw/ https://jwtalk.net/topic/34474-please-be-careful-on-youtube-so-many-apostates/ https://jwtalk.net/topic/4135-using-the-internet-socially-warning/ We love you all and pray for your continued well-being. Again, we understand if circumstances require ones to resign their membership. We hold no ill-will toward anyone who makes the choice to voluntarily leave our community.
    44 points
  22. "JW.org has passed the milestone of being translated into 1000 languages, and is still rapidly growing! We will surely continue to see many more languages added in a short amount of time. So I thought I'd share some interesting language stats that I hope you all find encouraging (disclaimer: these stats may not be 100% correct, but if not then would be very close)... Today there are 7,099 living languages (This number includes sign languages, creoles, pidgins, mixed languages, constructs, and unclassified languages). It is predicted by some that in 100 years from now only 10% of these will still be alive ~ that is roughly 700. ~ In 2016 the entire Bible had been translated into 636 languages, and the complete New Testament into 1,442 languages, and is currently in the process of being translated into many more languages. The Watchtower magazine is translated into over 300 languages, and has a circulation of over 62 million copies bimonthly, making it the most circulated and most translated magazine on the planet. The Brochure Listen to God and Live Forever is in well over 640 languages (figure from mid 2016) and counting... Of those 7,000+ languages, just 397 languages have one million or more native speakers, only about 90 languages have ten million or more native speakers (23 of these account for more than half the world's population), just 10 languages have one hundred million or more native speakers, and only 1 language has close to one billion native speakers (Mandarin Chinese ~ worth learning!). These are the names of those top 10 languages, in order of population (according to Wikipedia): Mandarin Chinese Spanish English (2nd place if including all speakers) Hindustani Arabic Portuguese Bengali Russian Japanese Punjabi "World Languages": World languages are international languages with a huge number of both native speakers and non-native speakers. The three most agreed upon world languages are (in order): English (By far the most international) French Spanish Less strict sources include the following in this category... Mandarin Chinese Arabic Portuguese Russian German "Endangered Languages": On the other side of the list, 1,955 languages have less than 1,000 native speakers. About 692 of those languages have less than 100 native speakers, and 363 of that number have less than 10 native speakers left. About 219 of those languages exist solely as an auxiliary language and has no native speakers left at all, or exist as a constructed language that a mere handful of people, and in some cases just a single person, can speak it to varying degrees of fluency. 199 languages have unknown statistics. Apparently the least spoken native language in the world is Taushiro (Pinche), a Peruvian language spoken fluently by only one elderly man. Language distribution: Africa: 2,144 Americas: 1,061 Asia: 2,294 Europe: 287 Pacific: 1,313 Constructed languages: According to another source, there may be over 300 constructed languages in total. Eperanto is by far the most successful of all constructed languages, having close to two million speakers around the world, and now even has a small population of native speakers (children taught Esperanto as one of their first languages by their parents). It is said to be one of the easiest spoken languages to learn, and along with Latin and Koine Greek, is even taught in some Universities (as well as in one primary school in Brazil). The complete Bible has been translated into Esperanto. Klingon (from Star Trek) is an actual constructed language that has up to 30 speakers. Apparently parts of the Bible have been translated into Klingon too. @Qapla Sign language stats: Out of the 137 sign languages, the most used is Chinese Sign Language, while the most international is American Sign Language (part of the French Sign Language family). Some sign languages have a written form, tho few people can read them. Oldest living language: Hebrew. Since Jehovah God blessed Shem, it's reasonable to assume that Shem's language was not affected when God confused the language of the disapproved people at Babel. Abram the Hebrew was a direct decendent of Shem (see the lineage: Genesis 11:10-26), and would have spoken the same language as his direct ancestor. Therefore, altho the original Hebrew has changed dramatically over time into its modern decendent language, the oldest living language would probably be Hebrew ~ as well as most likely being the oldest language of humankind. In Paradise will we all return to speaking the original language, Hebrew? Or will God create a brand new language for us? We will have to wait an see... Sources: https://www.ethnologue.com/statistics/size https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_languages_by_number_of_native_speakers http://www2.cmp.uea.ac.uk/~jrk/conlang.html https://wol.jw.org/en/wol/d/r1/lp-e/1200001953 https://www.jw.org/en/
    43 points
  23. We would like to let the JWTalk family know that we have some new members on the Staff to help moderate the community. Brother @Tortuga - a longtime member and one of the most active, is now a moderator for the first time. In addition, we would like to welcome back @anniebea to the team, another longtime member who took some time off but has made herself available again. Thank you both!
    43 points
  24. I have a very dear friend on JWTalk who has been instrumental in helping us (my husband and myself) to feel worthy in Jehovah's eyes - and he knows who he is - in face of some very severe trials ... these brothers and sisters are pivotal in helping all of us to remain firm and by extension - loved not just by Jehovah but by every one of us in our congregations and the extended brotherhood here on JWTalk. In addition to our friend has been many more friends who have pmmed us when times has been horrible, some even showing their love in a more tangible way - again they know who they are - our dear sisters whose hearts speak to us through their own trials and the brothers who give such wonderful scriptural advice. THANK YOU. But, the delight is, is that this is happening to not just Tom and I but everyone on JWTalk are instantly family and friends moreso as they express their love for Jehovah through the threads. So, by way of Encouragement and diamonds sharpening diamonds ... I wanted this opportunity to thank all of you who go out of their way to encourage those privately and those who are hurting. As times progress we are going to see more of our brothers and sisters in pain. I want to encourage not only a continuation of what is positive and beautiful happening behind the scenes here and in our congregations but to those who have not yet reached out to brothers and sisters who need to feel loved despite trials - to do so - as there is more happiness in giving than receiving. I'm so proud of you all on JWTalk from the mods who work so hard behind the scenes (Bob - thank you for your hard work) to the members who are moved to help via pms and encouraging and upbuilding posts. Thank you each and every one of you for your faith and your intense love to us all. PS: I am moved to write this as a very dear friend showed Tom and I how much he cared ... and I think this is a great opportunity for us to express not to me, but to all on this site how much we appreciate the spiritual encouragement we get ... thank you to Jehovah our Soveriegn and your son Jesus - for providing our brotherhood and giving us skills that can encourage ones we have not yet met in the flesh - we are indeed a privileged people
    43 points
  25. Does this sound alright? ================================ Esteemed Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin, Having become aware of recent developments regarding the Jehovah’s Witnesses in your country I feel moved to write to respectfully appeal that you do that which is in your legal power to rectify measures that would impede the free exercise of religion this group in your country. As you may be aware, on March 15th, 2017 the Ministry of Justice in Russia filed a claim with the Supreme Court of the Russian Federation, seeking to delcare the religious organization of Jehovah’s Witnesses « extremist » and to ban all related activity for this group. As one of Jehovah’s Witnesses myself, I can testify without reservation that we are taught never to resort to violence under any circumstances and to be kind and respectful to all people including those that do not share our faith. Indeed, for the 35 years I have been associated with the various groups of Jehovah’s Witnesses in the United Kindom and now in my chosen country of residence, France, I have personally benefited from instructions to be more mild tempered and patient with those around me. We are never taught to employ any actions whatsoever that could be classified as « extreme » with the exception of being « extremely kind » and « extremely loving » to their neighbours. Our meetings, which are open to the public, are places where we pray, sing spiritual songs and study the holy bible and this study often includes features with practical bible based instructions for young people, family heads, wives, and older folk to respect the governmental authorities, obey the law and be clean, honest members of our community. In view of the above I am writing to appeal to you, Mr President, to do all you can to repeal these measures. I am aware the laws of the Russian government guarantees freedom of worship for its citizens and feel confident that such peace loving people as the JEHOVAH’S WITNESSES will be considered worthy of the protections this law affords. My prayer remains that a wise decision in this regard will be made. Please be assured, Mr President, of my respectful regards,
    43 points
  26. We received some valuable feedback and as a result the administrators have decided to implement the following changes for the sake of clarification, openness, honesty, and loyalty. We would like to share 3 of the points that were brought to our attention, and what we have done to address them. More adjustments will be made as necessary. 1. The previous favicon (the image that shows in your browser tab and in your browser bookmarks/favorites) bore too much resemblance to the official website and app logos used by Jehovah's organization. See (The Watchtower, April 2018, Questions from Readers). If someone saved the link to JWTalk in their bookmarks/favorites, the favicon could be confused with JW Library. This, in turn, gives the appearance that JWTalk is an official extension of the organization, when that is certainly not the case. Therefore, we have changed the icon. The JWTalk community is not sponsored by the faithful and discreet slave nor operated by any legal entity used by the organization known as Jehovah's Witnesses. We certainly never intended to give that appearance, deceive, or cause confusion in this way. 2. The description for the "Bible Research, Personal Study, & Scriptural Discussion" section may have given the impression that we encourage independent interpretation of Bible passages as well as scrutinizing the accuracy of the New World Translation. See Our Kingdom Ministry, September 2007, Question Box. This article in Our Kingdom Ministry also says "They have created Web sites and chat rooms for the purpose of exchanging and debating their views" and it was a review of the consistent negative references to Chat Rooms in our literature that was a large part of the deciding factors that led the Administrator team here at JWTalk to abandon the trials of 3rd-party Chat software. Also, JWTalk.net does not encourage debate. Our Community Membership Policy has always contained the following statements... The Bible Research, Personal Study, & Scriptural Discussion area is for sharing the results of your own research that delighted you to the extent that you want to share your joy with others, or to request help understanding a Bible passage or current understandings better. It is not for airing your own interpretations, for "no prophecy of Scripture springs from any private interpretation" but rather, "Do not interpretations belong to God?" (2 Pet. 1:20, 21; Genesis 40:8). Likewise, it is by no means a forum for debate. If a conversation is drifting away from discussing and leaning more towards debate, please click the Report button on the post so that the Staff can look into steering the conversation back on topic or perhaps even lock the thread. With that said, the group description has been changed for clarification. BEFORE: A private members only forum for in-depth discussion of the Bible, interpretation, translation, and anything related to your personal study and research. This is a theocratic discussion forum for encouragement and spiritual growth. NOW: A private section for discussing the Bible, our literature and current understandings, and gems from your personal study and research. This is a theocratic group for building faith in God's Word and trust in his faithful and discreet slave. 3. The language in the footer could have been giving the false impression that our community is endorsed by, sponsored by, or sanctioned by the faithful and discreet slave. As such, we made the following changes to the blurb found in the footer as follows... BEFORE: Since 2006, JWTalk has proved to be the only legitimate community for real Jehovah's Witnesses on the web. AFTER: Since 2006, JWTalk has proved to be a well-moderated online community for real Jehovah's Witnesses on the web. Every registered member knows that we are a pro-JW community, and that while we are not an official channel used by Jehovah's organization, it is our vision that every member of JWTalk Community must be living in harmony with Bible standards and believe the teachings of Jehovah’s Witnesses that are expressed in their literature as well as on JW.org. However, unregistered guests that come across our site through a web link or search result may be wary, as they should be. At the same time, there have been cases of individuals who were under the impression that we were an official channel of communication for Jehovah's Witnesses, which has been evident through feedback like we recently received, as well as occasional messages sent through the Contact Us form, which we always redirect to our official website. With that said, we appreciate all the feedback we get, as we strive to keep the community as safe and clean as possible for everyone, and at the same time avoid the impression that we're under the umbrella of services provided by the faithful and discreet slave.
    42 points
  27. Dear brothers and sisters, all of us are going through challenging times now that we can´t have our meetings or participate in service like we used to do until now. I thought about a simple way to share a little encouragement among our worldwide brotherhood - maybe you like it? Now that many of us have to stay at home for charantine reasons, maybe we can share a picture of ourselves while we are occupied with any kind of spiritual things like reading the bible, watching JW.Broadcasting, writing witnessing letters or emails, having our family worship - even posting things here on JW.Talk. What do you think? Would this cheer us up a little bit? I´ll try to make a start
    42 points
  28. https://www.newsweek.com/jehovah-witnesses-tortured-electric-shocks-suffocation-russia-1337748 Unbelievable and really scary! We need your prayers!
    42 points
  29. Tortuga

    New GB Member

    I Herd that Losch had to Splane to Sanderson why they Lett Jackson Cook Morris than him...
    42 points
  30. 42 points
  31. First of all sorry for my English. My native language is Russian, but I will try to do my best. On the 9th of April Brother Kenneth Flodin with his wife visited Moldova on behalf of the Governing Body and an encouraging meeting for the witnesses from Transnistria was organized. 2181 witnesses from Transnistria were present. Me too, as I live in Tiraspol – the capital of Transnistria. Short information about Transnistria to give you an idea what is going on here. PMR - the Pridnestrovian Moldavian Republic (or Transnistria) is unrecognised autonomous part of Moldova. Moldova and Transnistria have different capitals (Chisinau and Tiraspol), currency (lei and rubles), government and main language (Romanian and Russian). Bethel is located in Chisinau. Russia is backing Transnistria. Laws in PMR are based on Russian legislation. That is why we here also face certain difficulties in our ministry. There is no anti extremist law here yet, but recently a law restricting missionary activity has been adopted in Transnistria. So we can’t offer any publications in our public ministry, use carts or invite people to our meetings anymore. Russian Supreme Court Case will definitely affect witnesses in PMR. So we were very happy to know about Brother Kenneth Flodin visit to Moldova. I want to share my impressions of his visit. Brother Flodin mentioned that average number of hours we spend in ministry and number of return visits and Bible studies after restriction of our activity has risen. Of course number of publications has dropped. Brother Flodin for the first time heard how circuit overseer praised publishers for the fact they didn’t distributed Memorial Invitations. Yes, we simply can’t do this in our circumstances. As for the court case in Russia, you all know that Mark Sanderson was in the court last Wednesday. In an e-mail to brother Flodin he wrote it was one of the proudest moments in his life. As for court result brother Flodin reminded that Jehovah knows issues we can’t know, as it was with Job. So we may pray for our brothers in Russia and should respect any Jehovah’s reaction to this situation. Then a recent letter from one Russian congregation to the Governing Body was read. Russian brothers are thankful to the Governing Body and all brothers and sisters in the world for their love, prayers and active support in letter-writing campaign. They are deeply touched, even to tears, by the efforts we all made to help them. They feel our love and love of Jehovah. Especially they thank our children, many of which can’t even write well but they still participated in the campaign. The campaign is already noticed by some Media in Russia. Russian brothers feel we are very close to them. No other organization in the world can show such love, they wrote. In any case they are sure that finally Jehovah will win. Not every letter will be read by Russian officials, noticed brother Flodin after that, but they will have to open our envelopes not to miss important correspondence from other people. So this is for sure will be great witnessing. Then an inspiring Bible talk “Make your mind over” was held. But it is for another topic Visit of Brother Flodin and his wife was really a precious gift from Jehovah.
    41 points
  32. I put some thoughts together for our Letter........took some expressions from the jw.org instruction.... not finished now.....but only an idea...... We wish to let you know that we appreciate the laws of the Russian government that guarantee freedom of religion to all citizens. At the same time we hope that the Russian authorities will stop the legal action being taken against Jehovah's Witnesses in Russia so that our brothers and sisters can continue to come together peacefully for their Christian meetings without fear. More than 170,000 Witnesses facing be criminally prosecuted merely for meeting for worship, reading the Bible together, or talking to others about their faith Jehovah’s Witnesses are known worldwide for being good citizens and for our peaceful activities. Our activity as Jehovah’s Witnesses and our publications encourage love of God and neighbor, love for family, and respect for government. There is absolutely nothing “extremist” or criminal in our Bible-based publications. The Bible tells us in Rom.13:1,2,6,7 to respect the Government and Laws of the country we are living in: " Let every person* be in subjection to the superior authorities,+ + the existing authorities stand placed in their relative positions by God.+ 2 Therefore, whoever opposes the authority has taken a stand against the arrangement of God; 6 That is why you are also paying taxes; for they are God’s public servants constantly serving this very purpose. 7 Render to all their dues: to the one who calls for the tax, the tax;+ to the one who calls for the tribute, the tribute; to the one who calls for fear, such fear;+ to the one who calls for honor, such honor " Please, please .....rethink your planned actions against your peaceful subjects.
    41 points
  33. Greetings. I created the following Programmable Custom Search Engine that allows one to search all of JW.org for illustrations based on a word or phrase: http://bit.ly/SearchIllustrationsOnJwOrg The following is an example of how it works. I searched for apples and found, on the first page of results, an illustration brother Alan @Meditate! was looking for: Search results show 20 illustrations per page. You can search in all languages. The link again is: http://bit.ly/SearchIllustrationsOnJwOrg Please let me know if this tool is useful for you or you have any questions.
    40 points
  34. Just wanted to thank you all for your very nice participation, and also the admins/mods who are watching over the forum. You really make it good for the "interchange of encouragements" we are all looking for.
    40 points
  35. 40 points
  36. Today I worked out in service with a newly baptized brother from a neighboring city and he told us a very nice story. He said after he got baptized and was in the bathroom changing, there was an older brother in his late 60s or early 70s who had just been baptized as well and they both were ecstatic. He asked the older brother how he came into the truth. The brother said that he used to be a baptist preacher. The brother said “really?! You’re going to have to give me the shortened version of this story.” He said that the brother then told him that he started to see things in the Bible that were contrary to what he was teaching his church. He realized he wasn’t teaching them the truth, so he decided to stop preaching. He said he had ideas of what the Bible really taught but couldn’t find a religion that shared his beliefs. One day he got on the internet looking for the truth and he stumbled on our website. The truth was so clear to him. Finally he had found a religion that taught what he knew to be the truth from the Bible. He’s now one of our brothers. What a great story. This brother was willing to give up his profession to do what he knew was right. If any of you guys came into the truth because of JW.org or know a story of someone who has, please share 🙂
    39 points
  37. We all have a variety of emotions and feelings about what is happening in Russia with the Supreme Court and the Ministry of Justice. We feel very sad about the liquidation of all of our Kingdom Halls and properties and we are worried about each individual brother and sister in Russia, they are our family and we love them! Even if we have never met them! And Jehovah is glad that we are so concerned and that we have such deep feelings for our family, because we know that His feelings were also affected by this injustice against His own people. But in all of this sadness, there is a very uplifting thought that can be like a beautiful rainbow appearing in the midst of terrible hurricane. That thought is a verse in MT 10 and are the powerful words of Jesus. We may have read this scripture many times, but please notice the way the FDS wonderfully explains this verse. When you read this article, we see clearly Jehovah's wisdom for allowing such an injustice to occur against His own people. These powerful words of Jesus were repeated several times by Brother Mark Sanderson of the Governing Body in the new special video on JW Broadcasting entitled, "Russian Supreme Court Renders Unjust Decision!" These words of Jesus were really uplifting and strengthening to our lawyers in Russia during the entire trial! And these words definitely are uplifting for me and helping me to see the bigger picture! (Matthew 10:18) . . .And you will be brought before governors and kings for my sake, for a witness to them and the nations. . . *** w16 September p. 16 Defending the Good News Before High Officials *** Jesus told his disciples: “You will be brought before governors and kings for my sake, for a witness to them and the nations.” (Matt. 10:18) It is a privilege to represent Jesus in this way. Our efforts to defend the good news may result in legal victories. Of course, what imperfect men decide does not ‘legally establish’ the good news in a complete sense. Only God’s Kingdom will bring permanent relief from oppression and injustice.—Eccl. 8:9; Jer. 10:23. Yet, even today Jehovah’s name can be glorified when Christians make a defense of their faith. As Paul was, we should try to be calm, sincere, and convincing. Jesus told his followers that they would not have to ‘rehearse beforehand how to make their defense, for he would give them words and wisdom that all their opposers together would not be able to resist or dispute.’—Luke 21:14, 15; 2 Tim. 3:12; 1 Pet. 3:15. When Christians defend their faith before kings, governors, or other officials, they can give a witness to people whom it might otherwise have been difficult to reach with the Christian message. Some favorable court decisions have refined legal codes, thus protecting freedom of speech and of worship. But whatever the outcome of such cases, the courage God’s servants display under trial makes God rejoice.
    39 points
  38. Dear President Putin, I want to let you know that I appreciate the laws of the Russian government that guarantee freedom of religion to all of your citizens, and I understand that you have a heavy responsibility for the safety and welfare of all those who live in your country. The country I live in is also worried about these same things. There is one group of peaceful people who are currently being denied this freedom of religion in your country. More than 170,000 Jehovah’s Witnesses are facing criminal prosecution simply for meeting for worship, studying the Bible together and talking to others about their faith. Russia’s “Federal Law on Extremist Activity” is being misapplied to Jehovah’s Witnesses in Russia. Jehovah’s Witnesses are known worldwide for striving to be good citizens, for encouraging love of God and neighbor, for their love of family and cleanliness, and for their respect for government. We are known for our peaceful activities, and under no circumstances would we ever resort to any activity that could legitimately be construed as “extremist” or criminal in nature. This is a matter of public record, and easily verified. The Bible literature we use encourages obedience to the government. My own parents were Jehovah’s Witnesses. At an early age, I was taught to be peaceful with my sisters, with my friends and my classmates in school. I was taught to be obedient to my teachers, to my parents and to the governmental authorities. Imagine a country full of people who only want to be peaceful with each other, who obey the laws, and who only want the best for their neighbors. This is what Jehovah’s Witnesses all over the world want for their neighbors, friends and the countries in which they live. For this reason, I hope that the Russian authorities will stop the legal action being taken against Jehovah's Witnesses in Russia so that our brothers and sisters can continue to come together peacefully for their Christian meetings without fear. Please, President Putin .....reconsider your planned actions against your peaceful subjects. Thank you. Sincerely, Judy Derby
    39 points
  39. 50gumbys

    This was new to me!

    If I shouldn't post this here - please moderators, remove it. But I just felt this was too important not to inform. Thank you. Will listen to your good sense in this regard. I was sent to work at a prison south of here in November, December. It was - apparently (so I could be wrong) - the worst prison in the state. At least I was there a few days before hearing this - because I thought it was on the same level as every other one I've been to. There are 2 completely separate units within the one centre. And I delivered literacy/numeracy in both units. There were 2 young men who both wanted Bible studies! Both had had connections with Jehovah as very young people. One knew Jehovah from his Mum reading to the kids from "My Book of Bible Stories". The other - his grandparents were Jehovah's witnesses. His story moved me so much. He came into class - a young man full of rage. He could barely contain himself, but he talked - for a long time. He finally said that when he had attended AA classes there, the instructor had said that he himself didn't believe there was a God. (one of the steps to AA - a belief in a Higher Being) This really freaked me. And you could see this young man was hitting bottom - literally. So I said to him - But there IS a God. He stopped - looked at me. "I know him as Jehovah." Now that did it. His face changed completely. Then - he talked to me for the longest time (and interestingly, we were left on our own, so he COULD talk). He talked about how he talked to Jehovah every night. That he felt he had been abandoned. But he couldn't stop talking to Him. I told the boy - Jehovah has heard you and has read your spiritual heart - and He loves you. This - today - is your very own miracle. And I felt that too. I was able to contact the brother locally who cares for those in prison. Now - this is important. He told me that they do not go inside to conduct Bible studies. They go in as Official Visitors. This way - inmates aren't harassed by others because of having a Bible study, they also bypass the religions who control the prisons, AND they can take in literature for these ones. That is AH-MAZ-ING !!!!!
    39 points
  40. This is something an elder sent me today: Imagine a conversation ”But Jehovah, I didn’t know about your requirements for survival” Jehovah will answer: I sent my servants to knock on your door, But you would not open. I had my servants call you by phone, But you would hang up. I had my servants write you letters, But you threw them away. I sent my servants to stand on the streets, But you walked by. I had them build a website With instructions in 1,030 languages But you refused to click JW.ORG I sent out missionaries, pioneers and publishers far and wide, To the top of the mountains and over the seas. And now you say I did not know, No… you did not listen.
    38 points
  41. Tortuga

    Family Worship ideas

    I used the WTLib, the Research Guide, another thread on JWTalk and some of my ideas to make a list of things to do for Family Worship. I tried to categorize it but there may be some duplicates. I would like to create a list that I can share with the congregation so please add your ideas! Bible: • Review the revised Bible appendix • Read a portion of the weekly Bible reading together. If the material lends itself to doing so, one person can read the narration, and others can read the words of the different characters. • Reenact a portion of the Bible reading. • Assign each member of the family to read the designated Bible chapters in advance and to make note of one or two questions that he has on the material. Then research everyone’s questions together. • Each week prepare a flash card with a Bible verse on it and try to memorize and explain it. Build up a collection of cards, and review them weekly to see how many scriptures you remember. • Listen to an audio recording of the Bible reading while following along in the Bible. Review Publications (take turns picking chapters or subjects): • Imitate Their Faith • Gods Kingdom Rules • Bible Story book • Greatest Man book • Current Yearbook • New Releases • BE book study points • See the Good Land maps • Research Guide • Organized to do Jehovah’s Will Meetings: • Prepare together for a portion of the meetings. • Practice the Kingdom songs scheduled for the coming week. • Practice the new Kingdom songs as they are released • If someone has a talk on the Theocratic Ministry School or a demonstration on the Service Meeting, discuss ideas for presenting it or rehearse it in front of the family. · Prepare the TMS Review together · Review any meeting material missed due to Circuit Overseer visit or Conventions. · Prepare for the Memorial. Ministry: • Have practice sessions to prepare presentations for the weekend. • Discuss realistic goals the family can set to expand their share in the ministry during the Memorial season or vacation time. • Discuss how at least one member in the family can increase their ministry by pioneering. • Allow each family member a few minutes to research how to answer different questions that may arise in the ministry, and then have practice sessions. • Review the Reasoning Book – Conversation Stoppers • Review points in the Pioneer book. • Review the tracts and how to use them. • Use the JWLanguage app to learn phrases you may need in the territory. Organizational matters: • Review the history of the local congregation. When and how was it formed? Which different Kingdom Halls did the congregation use? For this discussion, why not invite a longtime member of the congregation to your home to answer your children’s questions? • Explain the purpose of the various congregation meetings and larger gatherings and how the children can benefit from them. • Consider the purpose of the different schools established by Jehovah’s organization. Share experiences that show the good fruits that the graduates of these schools have been producing. • Help young ones to see the importance of becoming regular publishers of the good news. Show them how they can contribute to the worldwide report published in the Yearbook of Jehovah’s Witnesses. • Consider the different forms of full-time service available to young people in Jehovah’s organization. Chapter 10 of the book Organized to Do Jehovah’s Will is a good source of information. • Help young ones to understand why certain procedures are followed in the congregation. Explain why they should not act independently of Jehovah’s organization, even in small ways. Show them how they can contribute to good order in the congregation by following the direction of the elders. • Review the “From Our Archives” series in the WT. JW.ORG • Review the videos you can use in service • Review the electronic version of the current offer and any additional information on it on the web site • Do the Family Worship projects together • Practice how you can use JW.ORG in the ministry JW Broadcasting: • Watch the monthly broadcast • Watch a movie • Watch Morning Worship • Watch Construction Updates • Watch Experiences & Interviews • Watch or listen to a drama For families with teens: • Read and discuss Questions Young People Ask—Answers That Work. • Practice “What if . . . ?” situations. (See The Watchtower of May 15, 1996, page 14, paragraphs 17-18.) • Talk about long-term and short-term goals. • From time to time, watch and discuss a Bible-based video. • Consider the Watchtower feature “For Young People.” • Consider material from the Young People Ask or Learn From the Great Teacher books. • Have a practice session where the parents and children reverse roles. The children research a subject and then reason with the parents. • Have a practice session on how to handle a situation that is likely to arise at school. · A coach asks your daughter to join the school team. · Your son is offered a cigarette on the way home from school. · Some boys threaten to beat up your son if they see him preaching again. · While your daughter is working from door to door in field service, she encounters a schoolmate. · In front of the class, your daughter is asked why she does not salute the flag. · A boy constantly ridicules your son for being a Witness. For families with young children: • Dramatize Bible scenes. • Play memory games, such as those on pages 30 and 31 of Awake! • Occasionally, do something imaginative. (See “Studying the Bible—In the Zoo!” in Awake! of March 8, 1996, pages 16-19.) • Consider the Watchtower feature “Teach Your Children.” • Reenact a Bible drama • Demonstrate how you would preach to someone just resurrected. For couples with no children: • Discuss chapters 1, 3, 11-16 of the book The Secret of Family Happiness. • Share the results of research on points from Bible reading. • Prepare for the Congregation Bible Study or the Watchtower Study. • Discuss ways to expand your ministry as a couple. For single brothers and sisters or for those in religiously divided households: • Study new publications received at district conventions. • Read current and past Yearbooks. • Do research on questions common in your local territory. • Prepare presentations for the field ministry Additional Suggestions: • Read together an article from the current magazines. • Have each family member read in advance an article that intrigues him from the current magazines, and then have him give a report on it. • Occasionally invite a publisher or couple to join you for your Family Worship evening, and perhaps interview them. • Watch and discuss one of our videos. • Discuss together “Young People Ask” or “For Family Review” from Awake! • Discuss together “Teach Your Children” or “For Young People” from The Watchtower. • Read and discuss a portion of the current Yearbook or a release from the last district convention. • Before a convention, review the program and look up the scriptures. • After attending a convention or assembly, review the highlights. • Observe Jehovah’s creation firsthand, and discuss what it teaches us about Jehovah. • Work on a project together, such as a model, a map, or a chart. • Discuss holidays and their meaning • Review the DPA and AHCD for each member of the family • Review the family Emergency Plan and kits • Create Theocratic puzzles • Review the Beliefs Clarified on WOL. Experiences: Young ones enjoy doing things that they do well. Rehearsing presentations and thinking of ways to handle objections will help them to become more confident as they engage in various forms of the Kingdom-preaching work.—2 Tim. 2:15. You can also have practice sessions that will help your children deal with peer pressure. Chapter 15 of the book Questions Young People Ask—Answers That Work, Volume 2, can be used as a basis for family discussion. The “Peer-Pressure Planner” on pages 132 and 133 provides suggestions and also allows opportunities for your child to create responses that he or she feels comfortable with. A statement at the bottom of page 133 encourages youths: “Rehearse your responses with a parent or a mature friend.” From time to time, why not make such rehearsals part of your Family Worship evening? Family worship provides opportunity for parents to emphasize the benefits of having spiritual goals. In this regard, Young People Ask, Volume 2, has excellent information in chapter 38, entitled “What Will I Do With My Life?” While discussing the chapter, help your child to appreciate that centering one’s life on serving Jehovah is the best course to follow. Cultivate in your child’s heart the desire to pioneer, serve at Bethel, attend the Ministerial Training School, or pursue some other form of full-time service. There are features in The Watchtower and Awake! that provide an excellent basis for family discussion. For example, you might use the feature on page 31 of each Awake! magazine, entitled “How Would You Answer?” In every other issue, the public edition of The Watchtower contains the study project “For Our Young People.” These projects alternate with a series for younger boys and girls entitled “Teach Your Children.” Articles in the “Young People Ask” series in Awake! will be of particular interest to parents of adolescents, as will the book Young People Ask, Volume 2. When using that book, do not overlook the box “What Do You Think?” at the end of each chapter. That box is more than a review. The questions in that box can be used as an outline for family discussion. “When studying with our young daughters, my husband and I went over the material to prepare for a congregation meeting and then we had our girls draw a picture that summarized the lesson. At times, we reenacted Bible scenes or had practice sessions for field service presentations. We kept the study appropriate for their age, interesting, positive, and fun.”—J.M., United States. “To help the son of my Bible student appreciate what it was like to use a scroll in Bible times, we printed out the book of Isaiah after deleting the chapter and verse numbers. We joined the pages and attached each end to a tube. The boy then tried to do what Jesus did at the synagogue in Nazareth. The account at Luke 4:16-21 relates that Jesus ‘opened the scroll [of Isaiah] and found’ the passage for which he was looking. (Isa. 61:1, 2) However, when the boy tried to do the same, he found it hard to locate Isaiah 61 using that long scroll with no chapter and verse numbers. Impressed by Jesus’ skill in handling scrolls, the boy exclaimed: ‘Jesus was awesome!’”—Y.T., Japan. References from RSG14 pp. 87-88 - Family Life: Use Our Web Site to Teach Your Children Kingdom Ministry, 10/2013 What Is Family Worship? Jehovah’s Will, lesson 10 Keys to Family Happiness: Cultivate Spirituality as a Couple The Watchtower, 11/1/2011 Ideas for Family Worship and Personal Study The Watchtower, 8/15/2011 Christian Families—“Keep Ready” (§ Maintain a Family Worship Evening) The Watchtower, 5/15/2011 You Have Cause for Rejoicing The Watchtower, 3/15/2011 Help for Families Kingdom Ministry, 1/2011 What Would Your Child Say? The Watchtower, 12/15/2010 Help Young Ones to Become Familiar With Jehovah’s Organization (Box: Subjects to Consider During Family Worship) The Watchtower, 10/15/2010 Find Refreshment in Spiritual Things (§ Family Worship Refreshes) The Watchtower, 6/15/2010 Help Your Children to Meet Their Many Challenges (§ Why Practice Sessions Are So Valuable) The Watchtower, 1/15/2010 ❐ The Watchtower, 10/15/2009 Family Worship—Vital for Survival! Have You Set Aside Time for Bible Study? Cooperation Promotes Spiritual Progress The Watchtower, 7/15/2009 Personal and Family Bible Study Are Vital! Kingdom Ministry, 10/2008
    38 points
  42. YOU to know or believe. What... ? That Jehovah loves you even with your imperfections. (satan hates that!). If you are trying to serve Jehovah despite the Pandemic effects, injustice, lack of self worth, the mistakes of our brothers, feeling inadequate in the ministry, in putting on the Christ-like personality. etc etc etc.. (even with all of those pressures), Jehovah loves you EVEN MORE for doing. Satan knows this, although he hates all of mankind; even those who do what he wants. So what does satan do.. he uses this system to sow doubts in our mind that deflect our attention or service away from Jehovah. He wants us to believe that it is pointless serving God (Ps73 Asaph) and if we don't do it PERFECTLY... ALL OF THE TIME we should just give it up and chase other things; materialism, our Job/career, make us feel more important about ourselves or our social position.. making money our goal. (1 Cor 15:32 )These things do have an effect on how Jehovah sees us. However Satan Also knows that if we 'try hard' to resist this tendency Jehovah loves us for it. It is true that we cannot fully understand the depth of Jehovah's love and character or WHY on earth would he love ME.. (Rom 11:33) but we can try; by studying the scriptures we can try to discern/see these realities Satan is not stupid.. he has had a lot of experience in getting mankind to be self absorbed and adopting the characteristics of 2 Tim 3:1-5. He IS affecting us all to 'some' degree and even though we may be fighting these tendencies it can still make us feel unlovable... However, WE MUST remember even Satan KNOWS this is not the case! (Job 2:3) He just doesn't want YOU to know or believe it! Don't let him...!
    38 points
  43. Friends, We want to take this time to thank everyone for their continued help and support in keeping JWTalk.net a safe environment for all of us to gather and offer an interchange of encouragement. The moderators could not do this without your help, so thank you for your support! Please take a moment to refresh yourselves with our safety procedures. If you notice something is amiss or makes you uncomfortable either posted on the forum or received through PM, please do not hesitate to alert one of the mods. You can do this in one of three ways: 1. Use the "report post" link at the top right of every comment. 2. Start a topic in "Confidential Talk with the Moderators" 3. PM one of the moderators. Please do not post contact information on the forum where all our members can read. Contact information should only be sent via PM. Please be considerate of your brothers and sisters here. While here please keep a few scriptures in mind. Proverbs 15:1 A mild answer turns away rage. Ecclesiastes 7:9 Do not be quick to take offense, for the taking of offense lodges in the bosom of fools. Romans 12:18 If possible, as far as it depends on you, be peaceable with all men. Thank you again. JWTalk is completely member supported. We would not be here without you!
    38 points
  44. 38 points
  45. sunshine

    Shooting in Paris

    Hello everyone, Paris here! Just thought you'd like to know what's going on here - no news whether any brothers and sisters were hurt of killed in the attacks although a sisters in my congregation told me her son in law (not a brothers) was in the Stadium (I live in the North not far from there). All meetings cancelled (including assemblies) in response to the Government declaring a state of emergeny. Everything is very quiet where I live - most people are staying at home. Usual saturday markets closed, shopping centers practically empty. Brothers and sisters in my congregation are fine. We're either doing the Watchtower in family groups or Service groups today or tomorrow. There are many thousands of brothers that live in Paris (I live just outside) and things will be very difficullt for them for a few days. The elders are in contact with the Branch and told up to keep close to our phones and computers and they'll keep us all up to date with what the Branch wants us to do. Encouraged to preach informally to bring COMFORT to people and adapt our method with comforting scriptures. No public witnessing (display carts) for the time being.
    38 points
  46. I received some pictures from Korea. I HAD TO share them, that's way too epic ! They had these HUGE Bible as decoration in the stadium. and if fact, it was not only for decoration... let's see... Change the cover ! I know this soft grey color ! (Yes, Korea received the Revised Translation, their translators are quick, they are the first !) But wait ! There is more ! A Bible is meant to be open, right ? A pool !!! What about being baptized IN A BIBLE ? ^^ Ho yeah ! That's genius !
    38 points
  47. I am convinced that it is a matter of perspective. Are the walls that surround us a protection or a prison. This old photo is what I think of every time. How do you think these people feel about their cage? Too restrictive?
    37 points
  48. 37 points
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