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Examining the Scriptures Daily - 2016

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Wednesday, December 28

I will make you a great nation, and I will bless you.—Gen. 12:2.

When Jehovah directed Abraham to move his household to the land of Canaan, he willingly complied. Because of Abraham’s faith and obedience, Jehovah established the above-mentioned covenant with him. Years later, however, Abraham and his wife, Sarah, were still childless. Had Jehovah forgotten the promise that he had made to Abraham? Moreover, life in Canaan was not easy. Abraham and his household had left behind their home and relatives in Ur, a prosperous city in Mesopotamia. They traveled over 1,000 miles (1,600 km) to reach Canaan, where they lived in tents, endured famine, and faced marauders. (Gen. 12:5, 10; 13:18; 14:10-16) Yet, they had no desire to return to the comforts in Ur! (Heb. 11:8-12, 15) Rather than focus on “the things on the earth,” Abraham “put faith in Jehovah.” (Gen. 15:6; Col. 3:2) Yes, he fixed his mind on the things above in that he concentrated on God’s promises. w14 10/15 4:7, 8

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Thursday, December 29

Your people will be my people, and your God my God.—Ruth 1:16.

Jehovah did not forbid the presence of non-Israelites among his people. He allowed “a vast mixed company” of non-Israelites, including Egyptians, to accompany his people when he delivered them from Egypt. (Ex. 12:38; ftn.) Just before the Israelites crossed the Jordan to take possession of Canaan, Moses told them that they “must love the foreign resident” in their midst. (Deut. 10:17-19) God’s chosen people were to accept in their community any foreigners who were willing to observe the basic laws given by Moses. (Lev. 24:22) Some foreign residents became worshippers of Jehovah, sharing the feelings of the Moabite Ruth. Jehovah welcomed them as members of the community of his chosen people. (Num. 15:14, 15) When Solomon’s temple was dedicated to Jehovah, provision was made for non-Israelite worshippers, as reflected in Solomon’s prayer.—2 Chron. 6:32, 33. w14 11/15 4:11-13

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Friday, December 30

From infancy you have known the holy writings.—2 Tim. 3:15.

You may have been raised by parents devoted to Jehovah God. It was from your parents that “you learned” about the true God and how to please him. This certainly has done much to make you “wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus” and to help you to be “completely equipped” for God’s service. (2 Tim. 3:14-17) A key question now is, Will you show appreciation for what you have received? That may call on you to do some self-examination. Consider such questions as: ‘How do I feel about being part of the long line of faithful witnesses? How do I feel about being among the relatively few on earth today who are known by God? Do I appreciate what a unique and grand privilege it is to know the truth?’ Some youths have been tempted to see what life in the world is like. But there is no need for us to experience the “decadent course of debauchery” in this world just to discover how excruciatingly distressing that can be.—1 Pet. 4:4. w14 12/15 4:12, 13

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Saturday, December 31

I will certainly . . . make myself known before the eyes of many nations; and they will have to know that I am Jehovah.—Ezek. 38:23.

When Gog begins the assault on God’s people, Jehovah will tell his servants: “Go, my people, enter your inner rooms, and shut your doors behind you. Hide yourself for a brief moment until the wrath has passed by.” (Isa. 26:20; Ezek. 38:10-12, 18-22) At that crucial time, Jehovah will give us lifesaving instructions, and the “inner rooms” might well be connected with our local congregations. If, therefore, we wish to benefit from Jehovah’s protection during the great tribulation, we must recognize that Jehovah has a people on earth, organized into congregations. We must continue to take our stand with them and remain closely associated with our local congregation. With all our hearts, may we join the psalmist in proclaiming: “Salvation belongs to Jehovah. Your blessing is upon your people.”—Ps. 3:8. w14 11/15 5:16-18

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