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#1 – What enabled Joseph to flee from committing immorality with Potiphar’s wife? (Gen. 39:7-12)
(Genesis 39:7-12) Now after these things, the wife of his master began to cast her eyes on Joseph and say: “Lie down with me.” 8 But he refused and said to his master’s wife: “Here my master does not know what is with me in the house, and he has entrusted everything he has into my care. 9 There is no one greater in this house than I am, and he has not withheld from me anything at all except you, because you are his wife. So how could I commit this great badness and actually sin against God?” 10 So day after day she spoke to Joseph, but he never consented to lie with her or to remain with her. 11 But on one of the days when he went into the house to do his work, none of the household servants were in the house. 12 Then she grabbed hold of him by his garment and said: “Lie down with me!” But he left his garment in her hand and fled outside.
*** w07 10/15 pp. 23-24 par. 16 Hear the Voice From Within ***
16 The account about Joseph in Potiphar’s house shows that. Potiphar’s wife tried to seduce Joseph. Though he lived at a time when no Bible book had yet been written and the Ten Commandments had not been given, Joseph reacted by saying: “How could I commit this great badness and actually sin against God?” (Genesis 39:9) He was not responding that way simply to please his family; they lived far away. He principally wanted to please God. Joseph knew God’s standard for marriage—one man for one woman, the two being “one flesh.” And he had likely heard of how Abimelech felt on learning that Rebekah was married—that to take her would be wrong, bringing guilt on his people. And, yes, Jehovah blessed the outcome in that case, showing his view of adultery. Joseph’s knowing all of that likely reinforced the proddings of his inherited conscience, moving him to reject sexual immorality.—Genesis 2:24; 12:17-19; 20:1-18; 26:7-14.
#2 – How is Joseph a good example for those who face injustice and adversities? (Gen. 41:14, 39, 40)
(Genesis 41:14) So Phar′aoh sent for Joseph, and they brought him quickly from the prison. He shaved and changed his clothes and went in to Phar′aoh.
(Genesis 41:39, 40) Phar′aoh then said to Joseph: “Since God has caused you to know all of this, there is no one as discreet and wise as you. 40 You will personally be over my house, and all my people will obey you implicitly. Only in my role as king will I be greater than you.”
*** w04 1/15 p. 29 par. 6 Highlights From the Book of Genesis—II ***
41:14-16, 39, 40. Jehovah can bring about a reversal of circumstances for those who fear him. When adversities strike, we are wise to put our trust in Jehovah and remain faithful to him.
*** w04 6/1 p. 20 Do Your Circumstances Control Your Life? ***
By the time he reached the age of 17, Joseph had a serious problem within his own family. His older brothers saw that Jacob, their father, “loved [Joseph] more than all his brothers.” Consequently, “they began to hate him, and they were not able to speak peacefully to him.” (Genesis 37:4) We can imagine the anxiety and stress that this situation caused Joseph. Eventually, the hatred of Joseph’s brothers became so intense that they sold him into slavery.—Genesis 37:26-33.
While a slave in Egypt, Joseph had to resist the immoral advances of his master’s wife. Angry at being rejected, she falsely accused Joseph of trying to rape her. He was given “over to the prison house,” where “with fetters they afflicted his feet, into irons his soul came.” (Genesis 39:7-20; Psalm 105:17, 18) How trying this must have been! For about 13 years, Joseph was either a slave or a prisoner because of injustices brought on him by others, including members of his own family.—Genesis 37:2; 41:46.
#3 – What Basis was there for Joseph to extend mercy to his brothers?
*** w99 1/1 p. 30 An Act of Forgiveness Opens the Way for Salvation ***
Joseph’s mercy was not extended without a basis. He had already observed evidence of their repentance. For example, when Joseph accused his half brothers of being spies, he overheard them say among themselves: “Unquestionably we are guilty with regard to our brother . . . That is why this distress has come upon us.” (Genesis 42:21) Also, Judah had offered to become a slave in Benjamin’s place in order that the young man could be returned to his father.—Genesis 44:33, 34.
Hence, Joseph was justified in extending mercy. Indeed, he realized that doing so could result in the salvation of his entire family. Therefore, Joseph told his half brothers to return to their father, Jacob, and say to him: “This is what your son Joseph has said: ‘God has appointed me lord for all Egypt. Come down to me. Do not delay. And you must dwell in the land of Goshen, and you must continue near me, you and your sons and the sons of your sons and your flocks and your herds and everything you have. And I will supply you with food there.’”—Genesis 45:9-11.
#4 – How did the tribe of Benjamin eventually fulfill the prophecy at Genesis 49:27?
(Genesis 49:27) “Benjamin will keep on tearing like a wolf. In the morning he will eat the prey, and in the evening he will divide spoil.”
*** w12 1/1 p. 29 She Acted Wisely, Bravely, and Selflessly ***
A Prophecy Fulfilled
In fighting for God’s people, Esther and Mordecai fulfilled another Bible prophecy. Over a dozen centuries earlier, Jehovah inspired the patriarch Jacob to foretell regarding one of his sons: “Benjamin will keep on tearing like a wolf. In the morning he will eat the animal seized and at evening he will divide spoil.” (Genesis 49:27) In the “morning” of Israel’s kingly history, Benjamin’s descendants included King Saul and other mighty warriors for Jehovah’s people. In the “evening” of that royal history, after the sun had set on Israel’s kingly line, Esther and Mordecai, both of the tribe of Benjamin, warred effectively against Jehovah’s enemies. In a sense, they also divided spoil, in that Haman’s vast estate went to them.
#5 – What does Exodus 3:7-10 teach us about Jehovah?
(Exodus 3:7-10) Jehovah added: “I have certainly seen the affliction of my people who are in Egypt, and I have heard their outcry because of those who force them to work; I well know the pains they suffer. 8 I will go down to rescue them out of the hand of the Egyptians and to bring them up out of that land to a land good and spacious, a land flowing with milk and honey, the territory of the Ca′naan•ites, the Hit′tites, the Am′or•ites, the Per′iz•zites, the Hi′vites, and the Jeb′u•sites. 9 Now look! The outcry of the people of Israel has reached me, and I have seen also the harsh way that the Egyptians are oppressing them. 10 Now come, I will send you to Phar′aoh, and you will bring my people the Israelites out of Egypt.”
*** w09 3/1 p. 15 “I Well Know the Pains They Suffer” ***
The holy God had a reason for drawing Moses into conversation. God said: “Unquestionably I have seen the affliction of my people who are in Egypt, and I have heard their outcry as a result of those who drive them to work; because I well know the pains they suffer.” (Verse 7) God was not blind to the misery of his people; nor was he deaf to the voice of their pleadings. Rather, their anguish became his own. Notice that God said: “I well know the pains they suffer.” Regarding the words “I well know,” one reference work notes: “The expression implies personal feeling, tenderness, and compassion.” Jehovah’s words to Moses reveal a deeply concerned and caring God.
What would God do? He did not merely look with pity or hear with compassion. He was moved to act. He purposed to deliver his people out of Egypt and to bring them “to a land flowing with milk and honey.” (Verse 8) To that end, Jehovah commissioned Moses, saying: “Bring my people . . . out of Egypt.” (Verse 10) Faithful to that commission, Moses led Israel out of Egypt in 1513 B.C.E.
Jehovah has not changed. His worshippers today can be sure that he sees their adversities and hears their cries for help. He well knows the pains they suffer. But Jehovah does not just feel compassion for his devoted servants. The tender God is moved to act in their behalf “because he cares” for them.—1 Peter 5:7.
God’s compassion gives us reason for hope. With his help, we imperfect humans can attain a measure of holiness and become acceptable to him. (1 Peter 1:15, 16) One Christian woman who has struggled with depression and discouragement found comfort in the account about Moses’ experience at the thornbush. She says: “If Jehovah can make even the dirt holy, then maybe there is a little hope for me. This thought has helped me profoundly.”
Are you moved to learn more about the holy God, Jehovah? A close relationship with him is possible, for Jehovah “well knows the formation of us, remembering that we are dust.”—Psalm 103:14.
#6 – How did Jehovah live up to one aspect of the meaning of his name in the days of Moses? (Ex 3:14, 15)
(Exodus 3:14, 15) So God said to Moses: “I Will Become What I Choose to Become.” And he added: “This is what you are to say to the Israelites, ‘I Will Become has sent me to you.’” 15 Then God said once more to Moses: “This is what you are to say to the Israelites, ‘Jehovah the God of your forefathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has sent me to you.’ This is my name forever, and this is how I am to be remembered from generation to generation.
*** w13 3/15 pp. 25-26 pars. 5-6 Honor Jehovah’s Great Name ***
5 How did Jehovah reply to Moses’ question? In part, he said: “This is what you are to say to the sons of Israel, ‘I SHALL PROVE TO BE has sent me to you.’” Then he added: “Jehovah the God of your forefathers . . . has sent me to you.” God revealed that he will become whatever he chooses to become so as to accomplish his purpose, that he will always prove true to his word. Hence, in verse 15 we read that Jehovah himself said: “This is my name to time indefinite, and this is the memorial of me to generation after generation.” How that revelation must have strengthened Moses’ faith and filled him with awe!
JEHOVAH LIVED UP TO HIS NAME
6 Shortly after commissioning Moses, Jehovah fully lived up to his name by ‘proving to be’ Israel’s Deliverer. He humiliated Egypt with ten devastating plagues, at the same time exposing the Egyptian gods—including Pharaoh—as impotent. (Ex. 12:12) Then Jehovah opened up the Red Sea, led Israel through it, and drowned Pharaoh and his military force. (Ps. 136:13-15) In the “great and fear-inspiring wilderness,” Jehovah proved to be a Preserver of life as he provided food and water for his people, perhaps numbering from two to three million or more! He even caused their garments and their sandals not to wear out. (Deut. 1:19; 29:5) Yes, nothing can stop Jehovah from proving true to his incomparable name. He later stated to Isaiah: “I—I am Jehovah, and besides me there is no savior.”—Isa. 43:11.
#7 – According to Exodus 7:1, how was Moses made “like God to Pharaoh”?
(Exodus 7:1) Jehovah then said to Moses: “See, I have made you like God to Phar′aoh, and Aaron your own brother will become your prophet.
*** w04 3/15 p. 25 par. 7 Highlights From the Book of Exodus ***
7:1—How was Moses made “God to Pharaoh”? Moses was given divine power and authority over Pharaoh. Hence, there was no need to be afraid of that king.
#8 – Despite witnessing Jehovah’s saving power that delivered them from Egypt, what attitude did the Israelites later display, and what lesson can we learn? (Ex. 14:30, 31)
(Exodus 14:30, 31) Thus Jehovah saved Israel on that day from the hand of the Egyptians, and Israel saw the Egyptians dead on the seashore. 31 Israel also saw the great power that Jehovah wielded against the Egyptians, and the people began to fear Jehovah and to put faith in Jehovah and in his servant Moses.
*** w12 3/15 pp. 26-27 pars. 8-10 Do Not Look at “the Things Behind” ***
8 Can you imagine the joy the Israelites felt as they marched out of the land of their slavery as free people? In a spectacular way, they had witnessed Jehovah’s power when he brought the Ten Plagues upon haughty Pharaoh and his people. (Read Exodus 6:1, 6, 7.) In fact, not only did the Egyptians finally allow the Israelites to go free but the Egyptians urged them to go, giving them so much gold and silver that it could be said that God’s people “stripped the Egyptians.” (Ex. 12:33-36) The Israelites further rejoiced when they saw the destruction of Pharaoh and his military forces in the Red Sea. (Ex. 14:30, 31) How faith-strengthening it should have been to witness such exciting events!
9 Unbelievably, though, within a short time of their miraculous deliverance, these same people began to grumble and murmur. About what? Food! They became dissatisfied with what Jehovah supplied and complained: “How we remember the fish that we used to eat in Egypt for nothing, the cucumbers and the watermelons and the leeks and the onions and the garlic! But now our soul is dried away. Our eyes are on nothing at all except the manna.” (Num. 11:5, 6) Yes, their viewpoint had become distorted—so much so that they even wanted to return to the land of their slavery! (Num. 14:2-4) The Israelites looked at the things behind and lost Jehovah’s favor.—Num. 11:10.
10 What is the lesson for us today? When faced with difficulties and problems, let us not fixate on what may appear to have been positive things in the past—perhaps even before we came to a knowledge of the truth. Although it is not wrong to meditate on the lessons we have learned from past experiences or to savor cherished memories, we need to maintain a balanced, realistic view of the past. Otherwise, we could accentuate our dissatisfaction with our present circumstances and be tempted to return to our former way of life.—Read 2 Peter 2:20-22.
#9 -- Why does the expression “carry you on the wings of eagles” appropriately express how Jehovah lovingly dealt with the young nation of Israel? (Ex. 19:4)
(Exodus 19:4) ‘You have seen for yourselves what I did to the Egyptians, in order to carry you on wings of eagles and bring you to myself.
*** w96 6/15 pp. 10-11 Mounting Up With Wings Like Eagles ***
In the Shadow of an Eagle’s Wings
One of the most dangerous periods of an eagle’s life is when it learns to fly. Not a few eagles die in the attempt. The fledgling Israelite nation was also in danger when it departed from Egypt. Thus the words of Jehovah to the Israelites were most fitting: “You yourselves have seen what I did to the Egyptians, that I might carry you on wings of eagles and bring you to myself.” (Exodus 19:4) There are reports of eagles briefly carrying a young bird on its back so that the young one would not crash in its initial attempts to fly. G. R. Driver, commenting in the Palestine Exploration Quarterly on such reports, said: “The [Biblical] picture then is not a mere flight of fancy but is based on actual fact.”
Eagles are exemplary parents in other ways too. Not only do they provide the nestling with regular meals but the mother bird also carefully chops up the meat the male eagle brings to the nest so that the eaglet can swallow it. As their nests are usually built on cliffs or in tall trees, the young birds are exposed to the elements. (Job 39:27, 28) The scorching sun, common to Bible lands, could cause the death of the young bird were it not for the care of its parents. The adult eagle spreads out its wings, sometimes for hours at a time, in order to shade its tender nestling.
Thus it is very appropriate that the wings of an eagle are used in the Scriptures as a symbol of divine protection. Deuteronomy 32:9-12 describes how Jehovah protected the Israelites during their wilderness trek: “For Jehovah’s share is his people; Jacob is the allotment that he inherits. He came to find him in a wilderness land, and in an empty, howling desert. He began to encircle him, to take care of him, to safeguard him as the pupil of his eye. Just as an eagle stirs up its nest, hovers over its fledglings, spreads out its wings, takes them, carries them on its pinions, Jehovah alone kept leading him.” Jehovah will give us the same loving protection if we trust in him.
#10 – How is that Jehovah brings “punishment for the error of fathers” upon future generations? (Ex. 20:5)
(Exodus 20:5) You must not bow down to them nor be enticed to serve them, for I, Jehovah your God, am a God who requires exclusive devotion, bringing punishment for the error of fathers upon sons, upon the third generation and upon the fourth generation of those who hate me,
*** w04 3/15 p. 27 par. 1 Highlights From the Book of Exodus ***
20:5—How is it that Jehovah brings “punishment for the error of fathers” upon future generations? After reaching an age of responsibility, each individual is judged on the basis of his own conduct and attitude. But when the nation of Israel turned to idolatry, it suffered the consequences of this for generations thereafter. Even the faithful Israelites felt its effects in that the nation’s religious delinquency made staying on a course of integrity difficult for them.
Highlights of the Bible
Ex 19:4 - *** cl chap. 7 pp. 67-68 pars. 1-3 Protective Power—“God Is for Us a Refuge” ***
(Exodus 19:4) 4 ‘You have seen for yourselves what I did to the Egyptians, in order to carry you on wings of eagles and bring you to myself.
THE Israelites were in danger as they entered the region of Sinai early in 1513 B.C.E. A fear-inspiring trek lay before them, a journey through a “vast and terrible wilderness infested with poisonous snakes and scorpions.” (Deuteronomy 8:15, The New English Bible) They also faced the threat of attack by hostile nations. Jehovah had brought his people into this situation. As their God, would he be able to protect them?
2 Jehovah’s words were most reassuring: “You yourselves have seen what I did to the Egyptians, that I might carry you on wings of eagles and bring you to myself.” (Exodus 19:4) Jehovah reminded his people that he had delivered them from the Egyptians, using eagles, as it were, to carry them to safety. But there are other reasons why “wings of eagles” fittingly illustrate divine protection.
3 The eagle uses its broad, strong wings for more than just soaring aloft. In the heat of the day, a mother eagle will arch her wings—which may span over seven feet [2 m]—to form a protective umbrella, shielding her tender nestlings from the scorching sun. At other times, she wraps her wings around her offspring to protect them from the cold wind. Just as the eagle safeguards its young, so Jehovah had shielded and protected the fledgling nation of Israel. Now in the wilderness, his people would continue to find refuge in the shadow of his mighty wings as long as they remained faithful. (Deuteronomy 32:9-11; Psalm 36:7)
Ex 19:5,6 - *** w12 10/15 p. 25 par. 10 Obey God and Benefit From His Sworn Promises ***
(Exodus 19:5, 6) 5 Now if you will strictly obey my voice and keep my covenant, you will certainly become my special property out of all peoples, for the whole earth belongs to me. 6 You will become to me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.’ These are the words that you are to say to the Israelites.”
10 Then, after Israel’s deliverance from Egypt, Jehovah made another sworn promise to them: “If you will strictly obey my voice and will indeed keep my covenant, then you will certainly become my special property out of all other peoples, because the whole earth belongs to me. And you yourselves will become to me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.” (Ex. 19:5, 6) What a privileged position God thus offered Israel! It meant that if obedient, individuals from that nation could have the hope of being used by God as a kingdom of priests for the blessing of the rest of mankind. Later, in describing what he had done for Israel on that occasion, Jehovah stated: “I proceeded . . . to make a sworn statement to you and enter into a covenant with you.”—Ezek. 16:8.
Ex 19:18 - *** it-1 p. 669 Earthquake ***
(Exodus 19:18) 18 Mount Si′nai smoked all over, because Jehovah came down upon it in fire; and its smoke was rising like the smoke of a kiln, and the whole mountain was trembling violently.
A tremendous earthquake, apparently coupled with volcanic action, provided an awe-inspiring setting for the inauguration of the Law covenant at Sinai. (Ex 19:18; Ps 68:8) Jehovah had a direct hand in this display of power, for he spoke out of the mountain by means of an angel.—Ex 19:19; Ga 3:19; Heb 12:18-21.
Ex 20:1 - *** w90 5/1 p. 30 Questions From Readers ***
Then the account of the giving of the Ten Commandments is introduced this way: “God proceeded to speak all these words.” (Exodus 20:1) Does that sound as if God personally spoke the words of the Law? Such an impression could find support in that we are told that God spoke to Moses “face to face.”—Exodus 33:11.
Still, we have further revelation on this. The apostle Paul wrote about the Law: “It was transmitted through angels by the hand of a mediator.” (Galatians 3:19) Later, Paul specifically contrasted the instructions God provided in the Law and what Christians received through Jesus: “If the word spoken through angels proved to be firm, and every transgression and disobedient act received a retribution . . . , how shall we escape if we have neglected a salvation of such greatness in that it began to be spoken through our Lord [Jesus] and was verified for us by those who heard him.” (Hebrews 2:2, 3) So God did not speak the words of the Law with his own personal voice, nor did he use the Logos. Rather, he chose to use other angels.
Ex 20:2 - *** w89 11/15 p. 4 What Do the Ten Commandments Mean to You? ***
Thereafter, God plainly stated the Ten Commandments to Moses, prefacing these laws with the comment: “I am Jehovah your God, who have brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slaves.” (Exodus 20:2) This Decalogue was for the Israelites, who were told in the First Commandment: “You must not have any other gods against my face.”—Exodus 20:3.
Ex 20:3 - *** it-2 p. 1086 Ten Words ***
(Exodus 20:3) 3 You must not have any other gods besides me.
The first commandment, “You must not have any other gods against my face,” put Jehovah first. (Ex 20:3) It involved his lofty office and unique position as God Almighty, the Most High, the Supreme Sovereign. This commandment indicated that the Israelites were not to have any other gods as rivals to Jehovah.
Ex 20:4,5 - *** w09 2/1 p. 30 Why Do Jehovah’s Witnesses Not Use Images in Their Worship? ***
After liberating the Israelites from Egypt, Jehovah God gave them clear direction regarding how he wanted to be worshipped. The second of the so-called Ten Commandments says: “You must not make for yourself a carved image or a form like anything that is in the heavens above or that is on the earth underneath or that is in the waters under the earth. You must not bow down to them nor be induced to serve them, because I Jehovah your God am a God exacting exclusive devotion.”—Exodus 20:4, 5.
At the very time that God was giving these commandments to Moses, the Israelites were making a golden calf, likely in imitation of Egyptian animal worship. They did not call the image by the name of an Egyptian god. Instead, they associated it with the worship of Jehovah. (Exodus 32:5, 6) How did God react? His anger blazed against those who venerated the idol, and Moses destroyed it.—Exodus 32:9, 10, 19, 20.
Later, Jehovah God elaborated on the second commandment. Through Moses, he reminded the Israelites that they must not make for themselves “a carved image, the form of any symbol, the representation of male or female, the representation of any beast that is in the earth, the representation of any winged bird that flies in the heavens, the representation of anything moving on the ground, the representation of any fish that is in the waters under the earth.” (Deuteronomy 4:15-18) Clearly, the Israelites were not to use idols of any shape or form in the worship of God.
Ex 20:7 - *** hl section 11 What Has God Been Doing to Help Us? ***
How should we regard God’s name?
The third commandment is: “You must not take up the name of Jehovah your God in a worthless way.” (Exodus 20:7) No one should pronounce his name in an empty or a disrespectful way. All those who bear God’s name are obligated to praise him by their conduct, never dishonoring his holy name.
Ex 20:12 - *** g03 11/8 p. 26 When Loved Ones Do Not Share Your Faith ***
No time limit is implied in the command at Exodus 20:12 to “honor your father and your mother.” In fact, in Jesus’ discussion of this command, recorded at Matthew 15:4-6, it is obvious that he was speaking of the honor that adult children would render to their parents.
Ex 20:14 - *** it-1 p. 53 Adultery ***
Jehovah’s law separated Israel and raised the moral status of marriage and family life to a much higher level than that of the surrounding nations. The seventh commandment of the Decalogue stated in direct, unmistakable language: “You must not commit adultery.” (Ex 20:14; De 5:18; Lu 18:20) Adulterous invasion of another man’s domain was prohibited, as were other forms of sexual misconduct.—See FORNICATION; PROSTITUTE.
Under the Law of Moses the penalty for adultery was severe—death for both guilty parties: “In case a man is found lying down with a woman owned by an owner, both of them must then die together.” This applied even to a betrothed woman, it being considered that she had committed adultery if she had relations with a man other than the one to whom she was duly engaged. (De 22:22-24) If suspected of adultery, a wife had to stand trial.—Nu 5:11-31; see THIGH.
Ex 20:17 - *** w06 6/15 pp. 23-24 pars. 16-19 “How I Do Love Your Law!” ***
16 The third aspect of God’s Law to Israel that we are going to consider is the tenth commandment, which prohibited covetousness. The Law stated: “You must not desire your fellowman’s house. You must not desire your fellowman’s wife, nor his slave man nor his slave girl nor his bull nor his ass nor anything that belongs to your fellowman.” (Exodus 20:17) No human could enforce such a commandment, since no one can read hearts. That commandment, however, elevated the Law to a plane higher than that of human justice. It made each Israelite aware that he was directly accountable to Jehovah, who can read the inclinations of the heart. (1 Samuel 16:7) Moreover, this commandment got to the very root of many illicit acts.—James 1:14.
17 The law against covetousness encouraged God’s people to avoid materialism, greed, and grumbling about their lot in life. It also safeguarded them from the temptation to commit theft or immorality. There will always be those who have material possessions that we admire or who in one way or another seem to be more successful than we are. If we fail to control our thinking in such situations, we could become unhappy and feel envious of others. The Bible calls covetousness a manifestation of “a disapproved mental state.” We are far better off without it.—Romans 1:28-30.
18 The spirit prevailing in the world today promotes materialism and competition. Through advertising, commerce arouses desires for new products and often conveys the idea that we are not going to be happy unless we acquire them. This is exactly the kind of spirit that Jehovah’s Law condemned. Related to it is the desire to get ahead in life at any cost and to accumulate wealth. The apostle Paul warned: “Those who are determined to be rich fall into temptation and a snare and many senseless and hurtful desires, which plunge men into destruction and ruin. For the love of money is a root of all sorts of injurious things, and by reaching out for this love some have been led astray from the faith and have stabbed themselves all over with many pains.”—1 Timothy 6:9, 10.
19 Those who love God’s law recognize the dangers of a materialistic spirit and are protected from it. The psalmist, for example, prayed to Jehovah: “Incline my heart to your reminders, and not to profits. The law of your mouth is good for me, more so than thousands of pieces of gold and silver.” (Psalm 119:36, 72) Being convinced of the truth of these words will help us to maintain the balance necessary to avoid the snares of materialism, greed, and dissatisfaction with our lot in life. “Godly devotion,” not the amassing of possessions, is the key to the greatest gain possible.—1 Timothy 6:6.
Ex 21:5,6 - *** w10 1/15 p. 4 par. 5 Why Dedicate Yourself to Jehovah? ***
5 The Law that God gave to Israel describes another relationship in which people benefited by making a commitment. If a slave wanted the security of belonging permanently to a good master, he could enter a permanent and binding agreement with him. The Law states: “If the slave should insistently say, ‘I really love my master, my wife and my sons; I do not want to go out as one set free,’ then his master must bring him near to the true God and must bring him up against the door or the doorpost; and his master must pierce his ear through with an awl, and he must be his slave to time indefinite.”—Ex. 21:5, 6.
Ex 21:15 - *** it-1 p. 435 Child, Children ***
(Exodus 21:15) 15 One who strikes his father or his mother must be put to death.
One striking his father or mother, or calling down evil upon his parents, was put to death. The reason for such strong measures was that the nation might clear away what was bad from their midst and so that “all Israel [would] hear and indeed become afraid.” Therefore, any tendency in the nation toward juvenile delinquency or disrespect of parental authority would be greatly retarded by the punishment inflicted upon such offenders.—Ex 21:15, 17; Mt 15:4; Mr 7:10.
Ex 21:20 - *** it-1 p. 271 Beating ***
(Exodus 21:20, 21) 20 “If a man strikes his slave man or his slave girl with a stick and that one dies by his hand, that one must be avenged. 21 However, if he survives for one or two days, he is not to be avenged, because he is someone bought with his owner’s money.
A Hebrew slave owner was permitted to strike his slave man or slave girl with a stick if the slave was disobedient or rebellious. But if the slave died under the beating, the slave owner was to be punished. If the slave lived for a day or two afterward, however, this would be evidence tending to indicate that the slave owner did not have murder in his heart. He had the right to mete out disciplinary punishment, for the slave was “his money.” A man would be very unlikely to want to destroy completely his own valuable property, thereby suffering a loss. Also, if the slave died after the passage of a day or more, it might not be certain whether death was from the beating or from some other cause. So if the slave continued alive a day or two, the master would not be punished.—Ex 21:20, 21.
Ex 21:22 - *** g02 11/22 p. 10 Wisdom for Life in a Complex World ***
(Exodus 21:22-25) 22 “If men should struggle with each other and they hurt a pregnant woman and she gives birth prematurely but no fatality results, the offender must pay the damages imposed on him by the husband of the woman; and he must pay it through the judges. 23 But if a fatality does occur, then you must give life for life, 24 eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, 25 burn for burn, wound for wound, blow for blow.
The Bible helps us with this complex issue by revealing God’s view of the unborn. In ancient Israel if a pregnant woman was injured by another person and either she or her unborn child died as a result, God viewed the person responsible as a manslayer. That one had to pay “soul for soul.” (Exodus 21:22, 23) Hence, we can conclude that to the Creator all human life is sacred, including that of the unborn. In fact, God’s interest in us begins while we are still in the womb, as the psalmist reveals: “Your eyes saw even the embryo of me, and in your book all its parts were down in writing.”—Psalm 139:16.
Ex 21:24 - *** g 9/10 p. 10 What Does It Mean to Turn the Other Cheek? ***
(Exodus 21:24) 24 eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot,
Jesus prefaced his counsel quoted above with what his listeners already knew from the Holy Scriptures. He noted: “You heard that it was said, ‘Eye for eye and tooth for tooth.’”—Matthew 5:38.
The passages Jesus referred to are found at Exodus 21:24 and Leviticus 24:20. It is noteworthy that in harmony with God’s Law, the “eye for eye” retribution mentioned in those scriptures was properly administered only after an offender had stood trial before the priests and judges who weighed the circumstances and the degree of deliberateness of the offense.—Deuteronomy 19:15-21.
In time the Jews distorted the application of this law. A 19th-century commentary on the Bible by Adam Clarke states: “It seems that the Jews had made this law [eye for eye, tooth for tooth] a ground for authorising private resentments, and all the excesses committed by a vindictive spirit. Revenge was often carried to the utmost extremity, and more evil returned than what had been received.” The Scriptures, however, did not authorize personal vendettas.
Ex 21:28,29 - *** w10 4/15 p. 29 Jehovah Wants You to Be “Safe and Sound” ***
(Exodus 21:28, 29) 28 “If a bull gores a man or a woman and that one dies, the bull must be stoned to death and its meat is not to be eaten; but the owner of the bull is free from punishment. 29 But if a bull was in the habit of goring and its owner had been warned but he would not keep it under guard and it killed a man or a woman, the bull is to be stoned and its owner is also to be put to death.
The sanctions of the Law also applied to injuries caused by domestic animals. If a bull killed a person by goring, the owner had to destroy the bull to keep other people safe. Because he could not eat the meat or sell it to others for food, killing that animal was a big loss. But suppose that after a bull had injured a person, its owner did not keep the animal under guard. What then? If that same bull later killed someone, the bull and its owner would be put to death. That law gave pause to anyone inclined to be careless with his livestock.—Ex. 21:28, 29.
Ex 22:2,3 - *** it-2 p. 450 Murder ***
(Exodus 22:2, 3) 2 (“If a thief is found in the act of breaking in and he gets struck and dies, there is no bloodguilt for him. 3 But if it happens after sunrise, there is bloodguilt for him.) “He must make compensation. If he has nothing, then he must be sold for the things he stole.
The Law permitted self-defense but restricted an individual’s right to fight for his property. Bloodguilt came upon a person who, though catching a thief in the act of breaking into his home, killed the lawbreaker in the daytime. This was evidently because thievery did not carry the death penalty, and the thief could be identified and brought to justice. At night, however, it would be difficult to see what one was doing and to ascertain the intentions of an intruder. Therefore, the person killing an intruder in the dark was considered guiltless.—Ex 22:2, 3.
Ex 22:5 - *** it-1 p. 494 Compensation ***
Stealing. Stealing was deterred by the Law. Concerning a thief, it read: “He is to make compensation without fail. If he has nothing, then he must be sold for the things he stole. If there should be unmistakably found in his hand what was stolen, from bull to ass and to sheep, alive, he is to make double compensation.” This included money or other articles as well as animals. If the thief had slaughtered the stolen animal or had sold it, then he would have to make heavier compensation, namely, for a bull five of the herd, and for a sheep four of the flock. (Ex 22:1, 3, 4, 7) This law had the effect of protecting and recompensing the victim and made the thief work to pay for his crime, rather than sit in a jail as an economic burden to the community, with the victim uncompensated for his loss.
Ex 22:12 - *** it-1 p. 494 Compensation ***
(Exodus 22:12) 12 But if the animal has been stolen from him, he is to make compensation to its owner.
In the case of a domestic animal kept for another, the one keeping the animal (bailee) was to exercise the same care that he did for his own flock. Such bailees were usually paid for food the animals needed, and sometimes they were probably paid also for the extra trouble of keeping the animals. If an animal died of itself, was torn by a wild beast, or was taken by a band of marauders, the bailee was free from blame. The loss was beyond his control. This might happen to his own animals, but if it was stolen (by someone whom the bailee could have prevented, or through his negligence), the bailee was responsible and was required to make compensation.—Ex 22:7-13; see Ge 31:38-42.
Ex 22:16,17 - *** w89 11/15 p. 31 Questions From Readers ***
(Exodus 22:16, 17) 16 “Now if a man seduces a virgin who is not engaged and he lies down with her, he must pay the bride-price for her to become his wife. 17 If her father absolutely refuses to give her to him, he is to pay the money at the rate of the bride-price.
The Mosaic code had a provision allowing a man to divorce his wife for certain reasons. (Deuteronomy 22:13-19; 24:1; Matthew 19:7, 8) But what we read at Exodus 22:16, 17 and Deuteronomy 22:28, 29 shows that the option of divorce disappeared after premarital fornication. This, then, might cause a man (or a virgin woman) to resist a temptation to share in fornication. A man could not feel, ‘She is pretty and exciting, so I’ll have a good time with her even though she is not the sort I’d like to marry.’ Rather, this law would deter immorality by causing any would-be offender to weigh the long-term consequences of fornication—having to stay with the other party throughout his life.
The Law also lessened the problem of illegitimacy. God decreed: “No illegitimate son may come into the congregation of Jehovah.” (Deuteronomy 23:2) So if a man who seduced a virgin had to marry her, their fornication would not result in an illegitimate offspring among the Israelites.
Ex 22:22 - *** w09 4/1 p. 31 The Father of Fatherless Boys ***
God warns: “You people must not afflict any . . . fatherless boy.” (Verse 22) This was not a mere plea for humanitarianism; it was a divine command. A child who lost his father—and hence his protector and sustainer—was vulnerable. No one was to “afflict” such a child in any way. In other Bible translations, the word “afflict” is rendered “abuse,” “mistreat,” and “take advantage of.” To wrong a fatherless child was a serious matter in God’s eyes. Just how serious?
The Law continues: “If you should afflict him at all, then if he cries out to me at all, I shall unfailingly hear his outcry.” (Verse 23) The account switches from the plural “you” in verse 22 to the singular “you” in verse 23. The individual and the nation as a whole were equally responsible for obeying this divine precept. Jehovah was watching; he inclined his ear to the fatherless boys, ever ready to respond to their cries for help.—Psalm 10:14; Proverbs 23:10, 11.
What, then, would happen if someone were to wrong a fatherless boy, giving that child reason to cry out to God? “My anger will indeed blaze,” says Jehovah, “and I shall certainly kill you with the sword.” (Verse 24) One Bible reference work says that this “is literally ‘and my nose will become hot,’ which is an idiom for intense anger.” Notice that Jehovah did not leave it up to the human judges in Israel to enforce this law. God himself would execute judgment upon anyone who took advantage of a defenseless child.—Deuteronomy 10:17, 18.
Service Meeting Schedule:Song: 113
5 Min: Start a Bible Study on the First Saturday. Talk. Outline local arrangements for ﬁeld service on the ﬁrst Saturday in May, and encourage all to have a share. Include a brief demonstration using the sample presentation on page 8.
15 Min: “Exciting Design for New Tracts!” Questions and answers. Include a two-part demonstration showing how to oﬀer one of the new tracts from house to house and then how to continue the conversation when making a return visit on someone who showed interest.
10 Min: “New Video for Starting Bible Studies.” Talk. Play the video or its audio track for the audience. Invite audience to suggest other ways to use the video.
10 Min - Start a Bible Study on the First Saturday.
To Start Bible Studies on the First
Saturday in May
“We are making brief visits to discuss this intriguing question. [Show the ﬁrst question on the back of the May 1 Watchtower.] What’s your opinion?” Allow for response. Consider together the material under the question and at least one of the cited scriptures. Oﬀer the magazines, and arrange to discuss the next question.
15 Min - “Exciting Design for New Tracts!”Paragraph 1
Question #1 - What items for the ministry have an exciting new design?
1 Five new tracts were released at the 2013 “God’s Word Is Truth!” District Conventions. Additionally, Kingdom News No. 38, entitled can “the Dead Really Live Again?” has been added to the series of tracts. All six of these tracts have an exciting new design. What are the reasons for the new format? When we oﬀer them from house to house, how can we make good use of their design features?
Question #2 - What is the purpose of the new design?
2 Why the New Design?: Eﬀective house- to-house presentations often include these four steps: (1) Ask a viewpoint question to start a conversation. (2) Share a thought from the Scriptures. (3) Oﬀer literature for the householder to read. (4) Leave a question to answer next time, and make arrangements to return. The tracts’ new design helps us easily to follow all four steps.
Question #3 - 3. How might we oﬀer one of the new tracts in the ministry?
3 How to Use Them: (1) After giving a greeting, show the householder the intriguing multiple-choice question on the front of the tract, and ask for his opinion. (2) Open the tract, and consider “What the Bible Says.” Read the scripture directly from the Bible when circumstances al- low. If the householder has time, discuss “What That Can Mean for You.” (3) Oﬀer the tract, and encourage him to read the rest at his convenience. (4) Before you leave, show him the question on the back under “To Think About” and make arrangements to discuss the Bible’s answer next time.
Question #4 - How could we use the new tracts on the return visit?
4 The return visit is easy too. Simply use the cited scriptures on the back of the tract to answer the question you raised at the conclusion of your last visit. Before you leave, point out the picture of the Good News brochure, show the householder the brochure and the designated lesson that contains more information on the subject, and oﬀer the brochure. If he accepts it, make arrangements to discuss the brochure on your next visit. You have started a Bible study! Or instead of oﬀering the brochure, you could oﬀer another tract and arrange to return to discuss it with the householder.
Question #5 - What value do tracts have in our ministry?
5 Tracts have been used in our ministry for over 130 years. Although their size and format have varied, they have been a very eﬀective witnessing tool. May we make good use of this new design to continue spreading Bible knowledge earth wide.
(Proverbs 15:7) The lips of the wise spread knowledge,
10 Min – “New Video for Starting Bible Studies.”A brief video entitled Why Study the Bible? is reaching a vast audience on jw.org. The video is designed to motivate interested people to accept our oﬀer of a free Bible study. It can be accessed by selecting “Request a Bible Study” at the bottom of the home page or by scanning the QR (quick response) code printed on the back of each of our new tracts. Here are some ways that we can make good use of the video.
• When making a return visit, say to the householder: “May I show you a short video that explains how you can get answers to your Bible questions?” If he agrees, show him the video on your mobile device or on his own computer.
• If we place one of the new tracts while engaging in informal or public witnessing, point out the QR code and encourage the person to scan it with his mobile device. Since in many languages the QR code takes you directly to the video on our Web site, it may be possible to play the video on the spot using your mobile device.
• Tell coworkers, schoolmates, relatives, and other acquaintances about the video, and oﬀer to show it to them. Or e-mail them a link to the video, and invite them to view it on their own.
By making use of this new provision, we may be able to start more Bible studies, spiritually assisting those who are “rightly disposed for everlasting life.”—Acts 13:48.
Congregation Bible Study
“Draw Close to Jehovah”
cl chap. 6 ¶9-15
Gratitude for Divine Patience
(2 Peter 3:15)
(Exodus 15:11) Who among the gods is like you, O Jehovah? Who is like you, showing yourself mighty in holiness? The One to be feared with songs of praise, the One doing wonders.
(Habakkuk 1:13) Your eyes are too pure to look on what is evil, And you cannot tolerate wickedness. Why, then, do you tolerate the treacherous And keep silent when a wicked man swallows up someone more righteous than he is?
(Isaiah 59:15-19) Truth has vanished,
And anyone who turns away from bad is plundered. Jehovah saw this and was displeased, For there was no justice. 16 He saw that there was no man, And he was astonished that no one interceded, So his own arm brought about salvation, And his own righteousness supported him. 17 Then he put on righteousness like a coat of mail And the helmet of salvation on his head. He put on the garments of vengeance as his clothing And wrapped himself with zeal like a coat. 18 He will reward them for what they have done: Wrath to his adversaries, retribution to his enemies. And to the islands he will repay their due. 19 From the sunset they will fear the name of Jehovah And from the sunrise his glory, For he will come in like a rushing river, Which the spirit of Jehovah drives along.
(Luke 18:7) Certainly, then, will not God cause justice to be done for his chosen ones who cry out to him day and night, while he is patient toward them?
(Exodus 39:30) Finally, they made the shining plate, the holy sign of dedication, out of pure gold and inscribed on it an inscription as one would engrave a seal: “Holiness belongs to Jehovah.”
(Genesis 3:1-6) Now the serpent was the most cautious of all the wild animals of the field that Jehovah God had made. So it said to the woman: “Did God really say that you must not eat from every tree of the garden?” 2 At this the woman said to the serpent: “We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden. 3 But God has said about the fruit of the tree that is in the middle of the garden: ‘You must not eat from it, no, you must not touch it; otherwise you will die.’” 4 At this the serpent said to the woman: “You certainly will not die. 5 For God knows that in the very day you eat from it, your eyes will be opened and you will be like God, knowing good and bad.” 6 Consequently, the woman saw that the tree was good for food and that it was something desirable to the eyes, yes, the tree was pleasing to look at. So she began taking of its fruit and eating it. Afterward, she also gave some to her husband when he was with her, and he began eating it.
(Romans 6:23) For the wages sin pays is death, but the gift God gives is everlasting life by Christ Jesus our Lord.
(Revelation 12:9) So down the great dragon was hurled, the original serpent, the one called Devil and Satan, who is misleading the entire inhabited earth; he was hurled down to the earth, and his angels were hurled down with him.
(Genesis 3:15) And I will put enmity between you and the woman and between your offspring and her offspring. He will crush your head, and you will strike him in the heel.”
(Romans 16:20) For his part, the God who gives peace will crush Satan under your feet shortly. May the undeserved kindness of our Lord Jesus be with you.
(Matthew 19:28) Jesus said to them: “Truly I say to you, in the re-creation, when the Son of man sits down on his glorious throne, you who have followed me will sit on 12 thrones, judging the 12 tribes of Israel.
(Genesis 12:1-3) And Jehovah said to A′bram: “Go out from your land and away from your relatives and from the house of your father to the land that I will show you. 2 I will make you a great nation, and I will bless you, and I will make your name great, and you will become a blessing. 3 I will bless those who bless you, and I will curse him who calls down evil on you, and all the families of the ground will certainly be blessed by means of you.”
(Genesis 13:14, 15) Jehovah said to A′bram, after Lot had separated from him: “Raise your eyes, please, and look from the place where you are, to the north and south, east and west, 15 because all the land that you see, I will give to you and your offspring as a lasting possession.
(Genesis 15:13) Then He said to A′bram: “Know for certain that your offspring will be foreigners in a land not theirs and that the people there will enslave them and afflict them for 400 years.
(Genesis 15:16) But they will return here in the fourth generation, because the error of the Am′or•ites has not yet reached its full measure.”
(Genesis 22:18) And by means of your offspring all nations of the earth will obtain a blessing for themselves because you have listened to my voice.’”
(Exodus 23:24) You must not bow down to their gods or be persuaded to serve them, and you must not imitate their practices. Instead, you must demolish them and smash their sacred pillars.
(Exodus 34:12, 13) Be careful that you do not make a covenant with the inhabitants of the land to which you are going, or it may prove to be a snare among you. 13 But you are to pull down their altars, you are to shatter their sacred pillars, and their sacred poles you are to cut down.
(Numbers 33:52) You must drive away all the inhabitants of the land from before you and destroy all their carvings of stone and all their metal statues, and you should demolish all their sacred high places.
(Leviticus 18:21-25) “‘You must not allow any of your offspring to be offered to Mo′lech. You must not profane the name of your God in that way. I am Jehovah. 22 “‘You must not lie down with a male in the same way that you lie down with a woman. It is a detestable act. 23 “‘A man must not have sexual intercourse with an animal to become unclean by it; nor should a woman offer herself to an animal to have intercourse with it. It is a violation of what is natural. 24 “‘Do not make yourselves unclean by any of these things, for it is by all these things that the nations that I am driving out from before you have made themselves unclean. 25 Therefore, the land is unclean, and I will bring punishment on it for its error, and the land will vomit its inhabitants out.
(Joshua 6:25) Only Ra′hab the prostitute and her father’s household and all who belonged to her were spared by Joshua; and she lives in Israel to this day, because she hid the messengers whom Joshua sent out to spy on Jer′i•cho.
Joshua 9:3-27 – Omitted
(Leviticus 22:32) You must not profane my holy name, and I must be sanctified in the midst of the Israelites. I am Jehovah, who is sanctifying you,
(Matthew 6:9) “You must pray, then, this way: “‘Our Father in the heavens, let your name be sanctified.
(Isaiah 48:11) For my own sake, for my own sake I will act, For how could I let myself be profaned?I give my glory to no one else.
(Daniel 9:15) “Now, O Jehovah our God, the One who brought your people out of the land of Egypt by a mighty hand and made a name for yourself down to this day, we have sinned and acted wickedly.
(Daniel 9:18, 19) Incline your ear, O my God, and hear! Do open your eyes and see our desolate condition and the city that has been called by your name; for we are not entreating you because of our righteous acts but because of your great mercy. 19 O Jehovah, do hear. O Jehovah, do forgive. O Jehovah, do pay attention and act! Do not delay, for your own sake, O my God, for your own name has been called upon your city and upon your people.”
Jehovah—Our Best Friend
“[Abraham] came to be called Jehovah’s friend.”—JAS. 2:23.
My Father, My God and Friend
(Psalm 36:9) With you is the source of life; By your light we can see light.
(Genesis 1:26) Then God said: “Let us make man in our image, according to our likeness, and let them have in subjection the fish of the sea and the flying creatures of the heavens and the domestic animals and all the earth and every creeping animal that is moving on the earth.”
(John 3:16) “For God loved the world so much that he gave his onlybegotten Son, so that everyone exercising faith in him might not be destroyed but have everlasting life.
(Isaiah 41:8) “But you, O Israel, are my servant, You, O Jacob, whom I have chosen, The offspring of Abraham my friend,
(2 Chronicles 20:7) O our God, did you not drive away the inhabitants of this land from before your people Israel and then give it as a lasting possession to the offspring of your friend Abraham?
(Genesis 15:6) And he put faith in Jehovah, and He counted it to him as righteousness.
(James 2:21-23) Was not Abraham our father declared righteous by works after he offered up Isaac his son on the altar? 22 You see that his faith was active along with his works and his faith was perfected by his works, 23 and the scripture was fulfilled that says: “Abraham put faith in Jehovah, and it was counted to him as righteousness,” and he came to be called Jehovah’s friend.
(Colossians 1:21) Indeed, you who were once alienated and enemies because your minds were on the works that were wicked,
(Judges 6:11-16) Later Jehovah’s angel came and sat under the big tree that was in Oph′rah, which belonged to Jo′ash the Abi-ez′rite. His son Gid′e•on was beating out wheat in the winepress in order to hide it from Mid′i•an. 12 Jehovah’s angel appeared to him and said: “Jehovah is with you, you mighty warrior.” 13 At this Gid′e•on said to him: “Pardon me, my lord, but if Jehovah is with us, why has all of this come upon us? Where are all his wonderful acts that our fathers related to us, saying, ‘Did Jehovah not bring us up out of Egypt?’ Now Jehovah has deserted us and given us into Mid′i•an’s hand.” 14 Jehovah faced him and said: “Go with the strength you have, and you will save Israel out of Mid′i•an’s hand. Is it not I who send you?” 15 Gid′e•on answered him: “Pardon me, Jehovah. How can I save Israel? Look! My clan is the least in Ma•nas′seh, and I am the most insignificant in my father’s house.” 16 But Jehovah said to him: “Because I will be with you, you will strike down Mid′i•an as if they were one man.”
(Judges 6:17-22) Then he said to him: “If, now, I have found favor in your eyes, show me a sign that you are the one speaking with me. 18 Please do not depart from here until I return with my gift and set it before you.” So he said: “I will stay here until you return.” 19 And Gid′e•on went in and prepared a young goat and made unleavened bread from an e′phah of flour. He put the meat in the basket and the broth in the cooking pot; then he brought them out to him and served them under the big tree. 20 The angel of the true God now said to him: “Take the meat and the unleavened bread and place them on the big rock there, and pour out the broth.” And he did so. 21 Then Jehovah’s angel stretched out the tip of the staff that was in his hand and touched the meat and the unleavened bread, and fire flared up from the rock and consumed the meat and the unleavened bread. Jehovah’s angel then vanished from his sight. 22 Gid′e•on now realized that it was Jehovah’s angel. At once Gid′e•on said: “Alas, Sovereign Lord Jehovah, for I have seen Jehovah’s angel face-toface!”
(Judges 6:23, 24) But Jehovah said to him: “Peace be with you. Have no fear; you will not die.” 24 So Gid′e•on built an altar there to Jehovah, and it is called Je•ho′vah-sha′lom down to this day. It is still in Oph′rah of the Abiez′ rites.
(Psalm 15:0-5) A melody of David. 15 O Jehovah, who may be a guest in your tent? Who may reside in your holy mountain? 2 The one who is walking faultlessly, Practicing what is right And speaking the truth in his heart. 3 He does not slander with his tongue, He does nothing bad to his neighbor, And he does not defame his friends. 4 He rejects anyone who is contemptible, But he honors those fearing Jehovah. He does not go back on his promise, even when it is bad for him. 5 He does not lend his money on interest, And he does not accept a bribe against the innocent. Whoever does these things will never be shaken.
(Psalm 15:1) O Jehovah, who may be a guest in your tent? Who may reside in your holy mountain?
(Psalm 15:3) He does not slander with his tongue, He does nothing bad to his neighbor, And he does not defame his friends.
(Psalm 15:5) He does not lend his money on interest, And he does not accept a bribe against the innocent. Whoever does these things will never be shaken.
(Psalm 34:13) Then guard your tongue from what is bad, Your lips from speaking deception.
(Hebrews 13:17) Be obedient to those who are taking the lead among you and be submissive, for they are keeping watch over you as those who will render an account, so that they may do this with joy and not with sighing, for this would be damaging to you.
(Jude 8) Despite this, these men too are indulging in dreams, defiling the flesh, despising authority, and speaking abusively of glorious ones.
(Hebrews 13:18) Keep praying for us, for we trust we have an honest conscience, as we wish to conduct ourselves honestly in all things.
(Psalm 15:4) He rejects anyone who is contemptible, But he honors those fearing Jehovah. He does not go back on his promise, even when it is bad for him.
(Luke 10:5, 6) Wherever you enter into a house, say first: ‘May this house have peace.’ 6 And if a friend of peace is there, your peace will rest upon him. But if there is not, it will return to you.
(1 Corinthians 3:9) For we are God’s fellow workers. You are God’s field under cultivation, God’s building.
(Psalm 65:2) O Hearer of prayer, to you people of all sorts will come.
(Psalm 119:145) I call with my whole heart. Answer me, O Jehovah. Your regulations I will observe.
(Lamentations 3:41) Let us lift up our hearts along with our hands to God in the heavens:
(Romans 8:26, 27) In like manner, the spirit also joins in with help for our weakness; for the problem is that we do not know what we should pray for as we need to, but the spirit itself pleads for us with unuttered groanings. 27 But the one who searches the hearts knows what the meaning of the spirit is, because it is pleading in harmony with God for the holy ones.
(Philippians 4:6, 7) Do not be anxious over anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication along with thanksgiving, let your petitions be made known to God; 7 and the peace of God that surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and your mental powers by means of Christ Jesus.
(1 Thessalonians 5:17) Pray constantly.