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Study information for Theocratic Ministry School ReviewThe following questions will be considered at the Theocratic Ministry School during the week beginning December 28, 2015. The date when each point is scheduled for discussion is included so that research can be done when preparing for the school each week.
1. Did David treat his captives savagely, as some conclude from 1 Chronicles 20:3? [Nov. 2, w05 2/15 p. 27]
1 Chronicles 20:3 New World Translation
3 And he brought out the people who were in it and put them to work+ at sawing stones and at working with sharp iron instruments and with axes. That was what David did to all the cities of the Amʹmon•ites. Finally David and all the troops returned to Jerusalem.David’s actions have been misunderstood because of the way some Bible translations render this verse. However, the “New World Translation” accurately conveys the thought that David put the defeated Ammonites to work with saws and axes; he did not “cut them with saws . . . and with axes,” as the “King James Version” renders this verse. David did not copy the sadistic and brutal war customs of his day.
2. What moved David to show a spirit of generosity, and what will help us to do the same? (1 Chron. 22:5) [Nov. 9, w05 10/1 p. 11 par. 7]
1 Chronicles 22:5 New World Translation
5 And David said: “My son Solʹo•mon is young and inexperienced,*+ and the house to be built for Jehovah is to be exceedingly magnificent,+ so that its fame and beauty+ will be known in all lands.+ Therefore, I will make preparation for him.” So David prepared materials in great quantity before his death.Although he was not commissioned to build Jehovah’s temple, David exhibited a generous spirit because he appreciated that all he had acquired was because of Jehovah’s goodness. If we reflect appreciatively on all that Jehovah has done for us, similar feelings of gratitude will move us to have a spirit of generosity in supporting the Kingdom work.
3. What did David mean when he said to Solomon: “Know the God of your father”? (1 Chron. 28:9) [Nov. 16, w10 11/1 p. 30 pars. 3, 7]
1 Chronicles 28:9 New World Translation
9 “And you, Solʹo•mon my son, know the God of your father and serve him with a complete* heart+ and with a delightful* soul,* for Jehovah searches through all hearts,+ and he discerns every inclination of the thoughts.+ If you search for him, he will let himself be found by you,+ but if you leave him, he will reject you forever.+David wanted his son to do more than just believe in God. He wanted Solomon to cultivate something he himself treasured—a close personal relationship with Jehovah. To do this would require digging into the Scriptures in an effort to know Jehovah intimately.
4. What did Solomon’s request at 2 Chronicles 1:10 reveal about him, and what might we learn by analyzing our personal prayers to Jehovah? (2 Chron. 1:11, 12) [Nov. 23, w05 12/1 p. 19 par. 6]
2 Chronicles 1:10 New World Translation
10 Give me now wisdom and knowledge+ to lead this people,* for who can possibly judge this great people of yours?”+
2 Chronicles 1:11, 12 New World Translation11 Then God said to Solʹo•mon: “Because this is your heart’s desire and you have not asked for wealth, riches, and honor or for the death* of those hating you, nor have you asked for a long life,* but you have asked for wisdom and knowledge to judge my people over whom I have made you king,+ 12 wisdom and knowledge will be given you; but I will also give you wealth and riches and honor such as no kings before you have had and none after you will have.”+
Solomon’s request showed Jehovah that gaining wisdom and knowledge was close to the king’s heart. Our prayers to God reveal what is close to our heart. We are wise to analyze their content.
5. According to 2 Chronicles 6:29, 30, what unique ability does Jehovah possess, and why should we open our heart to him in prayer? (Ps. 55:22) [Nov. 30, w10 12/1 p. 11 par. 7]
2 Chronicles 6:29, 30 New World Translation
29 whatever prayer,+ whatever request for favor+ may be made by any man or by all your people Israel (for each one knows his own plague and his own pain)+ when they spread out their hands toward this house,+ 30 then may you hear from the heavens, your dwelling place,+ and may you forgive;+ and reward each one according to all his ways, for you know his heart (you alone truly know the human heart),+
Psalm 55:22 New World Translation
22 Throw your burden on Jehovah,+ And he will sustain you.+ Never will he allow the righteous one to fall.*+Fellow humans may not fully understand our inner feelings—our “own plague” and our “own pain.” (Prov. 14: 10) However, Jehovah alone knows our heart, and he deeply cares about us. Pouring out our heart to him in prayer can make our burdens easier to bear.
6. On what basis did Asa pray for victory over an enormous military force, and of what may we be sure in connection with our spiritual warfare? (2 Chron. 14:11) [Dec. 7, w12 8/15 p. 8 par. 6–p. 9 par. 1]
2 Chronicles 14:11 New World Translation
11 Aʹsa then called to Jehovah his God+ and said: “O Jehovah, it does not matter to you whether those you help are many or have no power.+ Help us, O Jehovah our God, for we are relying* on you,+ and in your name we have come against this crowd.+ O Jehovah, you are our God. Do not let mortal man prevail against you.”+Asa appealed to God on the basis of Jehovah’s name being involved in the conflict with the Ethiopians. Today, our personal battles may include exertion to resist the pervading spirit of moral laxity, to fight our own weaknesses, or to protect our family from defiling influences. Yet, we can be sure that Jehovah will reward with victory all faithful ones who wage spiritual warfare in his name.
7. How does the way in which Jehovah dealt with King Jehoshaphat’s failings assure us of God’s love, and how should this affect our view of others? (2 Chron. 19:3) [Dec. 14, w03 7/1 p. 17 par. 13; cl p. 245 par. 12]
2 Chronicles 19:3 New World Translation
3 Nevertheless, there are good things that have been found in you,+ because you cleared out the sacred poles* from the land and you have prepared your heart* to search for the true God.”+When King Jehoshaphat committed a foolish act, Jehovah’s righteous anger did not blind Him to the good in Jehoshaphat. Jehovah reassured Jehoshaphat of His love by telling him: “Nevertheless, there are good things that have been found in you.” When others sin against us, we must be willing to look for and value the good in them.
8. Why and how must we “take [our] position” and “stand still” in our day? (2 Chron. 20:17) [Dec. 21, w05 12/1 p. 21 par. 2; w03 6/1 p. 21 pars. 15-16]
2 Chronicles 20:17 New World Translation
17 You will not need to fight this battle. Take your position, stand still,+ and see the salvation of Jehovah in your behalf.*+ O Judah and Jerusalem, do not be afraid or be terrified.+ Tomorrow go out against them, and Jehovah will be with you.’”+To “see the salvation of Jehovah,” we need to “take [our] position” in active support of God’s Kingdom by maintaining Christian neutrality, being steadfast in our service to Jehovah, and publicly praising Jehovah for his loyal love. Rather than take matters into our own hands, we must “stand still,” placing our implicit trust in Jehovah and his organization.
9. What sobering reminder do we discern in 2 Chronicles 21:20 in connection with the death of Jehoram? [Dec. 21, w98 11/15 p. 32 par. 4]
2 Chronicles 21:20 New World Translation
20 He was 32 years old when he became king, and he reigned for eight years in Jerusalem. No one regretted it when he died. So they buried him in the City of David,+ but not in the burial places of the kings.+The life course of Jehoram illustrates the truthfulness of the Bible proverb: “The memory of the righteous one is due for a blessing, but the name of the wicked will rot.” (Prov. 10:7) Therefore, each of us should soberly consider the kind of name we are making with God and our fellow man.
10. According to 2 Chronicles 26:5, who exercised a good influence on young Uzziah, and how can youths today benefit from mature Christians in the congregation? [Dec. 28, w07 12/15 p. 10 pars. 2, 4]
2 Chronicles 26:5 New World Translation
5 And he kept searching for God in the days of Zech•a•riʹah, who taught him to fear the true God. During the time he was searching for Jehovah, the true God made him prosper.+Zechariah (not the prophet) exercised a fine influence on the young ruler to do what was right. Youths today can benefit themselves by listening to mature Christians, who can influence them to keep on “searching for God” and to do what is right in Jehovah’s eyes. Youths can show that they treasure mature Christians by giving serious consideration to their advice.
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