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Congregation Bible Study ‒ Week starting may 4

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Study information for the book: Draw Close to Jehovah

CHAPTER 24

NOTHING CAN “SEPARATE US FROM GOD’S LOVE”


1. What negative feeling afflicts many people, including some true Christians?

DOES Jehovah God love you personally? Some agree that God loves mankind in general, as John 3:16 says. But they feel, in effect: ‘God could never love me as an individual.’ Even true Christians may occasionally have doubts in that respect. Discouraged, one man said: “I find it very difficult to believe that God cares anything about me.” Do similar doubts afflict you at times?
par. 1 (John 3:16) “For God loved the world so much that he gave his only-begotten Son, so that everyone exercising faith in him might not be destroyed but have everlasting life.

2, 3. Who wants us to believe that we are worthless or unlovable in Jehovah’s eyes, and how can we combat that notion?

2 Satan is eager for us to believe that Jehovah God neither loves us nor values us. True, Satan often seduces people by appealing to their vanity and pride. (2 Corinthians 11:3) But he also delights in crushing the self-respect of vulnerable ones. (John 7:47-49; 8:13, 44) This is particularly so in these critical “last days.” Many today grow up in families where there is “no natural affection.” Others are constantly exposed to those who are fierce, selfish, and headstrong. (2 Timothy 3:1-5) Years of being subjected to ill-treatment, racism, or hatred may have convinced such ones that they are worthless or unlovable.
par. 2 (2 Cor. 11:3) But I am afraid that somehow, as the serpent seduced Eve by its cunning, your minds might be corrupted away from the sincerity and the chastity that are due the Christ.
par. 2 (John 7:47-49) In turn the Pharisees answered: “You have not been misled also, have you? 48 Not one of the rulers or of the Pharisees has put faith in him, has he? 49 But this crowd who do not know the Law are accursed people.”
par. 2 (John 8:13) So the Pharisees said to him: “You bear witness about yourself; your witness is not true.”
par. 2 (John 8:44) You are from your father the Devil, and you wish to do the desires of your father. That one was a murderer when he began, and he did not stand fast in the truth, because truth is not in him. When he speaks the lie, he speaks according to his own disposition, because he is a liar and the father of the lie.
par. 2 (2 Tim. 3:1-5) But know this, that in the last days critical times hard to deal with will be here. 2 For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, haughty, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, disloyal, 3 having no natural affection, not open to any agreement, slanderers, without self-control, fierce, without love of goodness, 4 betrayers, headstrong, puffed up with pride, lovers of pleasures rather than lovers of God, 5 having an appearance of godliness but proving false to its power; and from these turn away.

3 If you sense such negative feelings in yourself, do not despair. Many of us are unreasonably hard on ourselves from time to time. But remember, God’s Word is designed for “setting things straight” and for “overturning strongly entrenched things.” (2 Timothy 3:16; 2 Corinthians 10:4) The Bible says: “We shall assure our hearts before him as regards whatever our hearts may condemn us in, because God is greater than our hearts and knows all things.” (1 John 3:19, 20) Let us consider four ways in which the Scriptures help us to “assure our hearts” of Jehovah’s love.
par. 3 (2 Tim. 3:16) All Scripture is inspired of God and beneficial for teaching, for reproving, for setting things straight, for disciplining in righteousness,
par. 3 (2 Cor. 10:4) For the weapons of our warfare are not fleshly, but powerful by God for overturning strongly entrenched things.
par. 3 (1 John 3:19, 20) By this we will know that we originate with the truth, and we will assure our hearts before him 20 regarding whatever our hearts may condemn us in, because God is greater than our hearts and knows all things.

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