So, how’s this going? So far—SO GOOD!
It’s only a few days in, I know. But already I have come to love my time alone with Jehovah’s word each day. Seriously, I love the thematic reading schedule. I look forward to starting next week’s rotation because there are parts I am literally excited to get back to. I am taking time to watch the videos entitled “An Introduction to…” just to be reminded again of the Bible book writer, their timeline, the book highlights, the geography of the book’s location. Tho we have relatively recently read much of this in our scheduled weekly readings, I find, with the weekly readings, the purpose is different, so I have gotten different things out of those readings. This schedule, I’m really truly reading for just myself. I’m listening to it with a different ear, one that is seeking out what Jehovah is saying to me with this. I know we are supposed to do that with our weekly reading too, but perhaps because I do that while doing meeting prep, it is a little too hurried, or maybe because we have all the highlighted points & scriptures & a general theme to the evening’s material, I focus mostly on just those things, sometimes finding a point that’s off topic & wondering if it’s worth sharing. Anyways, the point is, my daily Bible reading is really just for me & the things I feel, think, worry about, am preparing for, with my life in mind, my family in mind, including my spiritual family.
So far I’ve completed all the scheduled reading for this week: The Law: Genesis 1-3; History: Joshua 1-5; Psalms: Psalms 1,2; Poetry: Job 1,2; Prophecy: Isaiah 1-6. Out of these I surprised myself & today’s reading, Isaiah 1-6, has been my favourite so far. It is the prophetic judgement warning against Judah, written in poetic format, with rich detail & scathing words. It feels like just yesterday we covered this in our weekly reading, yet I loved it & still found it fresh to read.
Each day I’m making detailed notes for myself in a little journal, writing down thoughts & recording scriptures in handwriting I want to memorize; highlighting the scriptures I want to memorize on my jw app tagged “memorization” along with underlining them in my hard copy study bible. I’m also highlighting scriptures I just find inspiring & beautiful or powerful. Today’s reading, read in ‘an undertone’ was inspiring & just a delicious read. You really get the sense of Jehovah’s strength & justice from the imagery. This is why the New World Translation is so amazing to read—this is how The American Standard reads at Isaiah 5:18-24:
“18 Woe unto them that draw iniquity with cords of falsehood, and sin as it were with a cart rope; 19 that say, Let him make speed, let him hasten his work, that we may see it; and let the counsel of the Holy One of Israel draw nigh and come, that we may know it! 20 Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter! 21 Woe unto them that are wise in their own eyes, and prudent in their own sight! 22 Woe unto them that are mighty to drink wine, and men of strength to mingle strong drink; 23 that justify the wicked for a bribe, and take away the righteousness of the righteous from him! 24 Therefore as the tongue of fire devoureth the stubble, and as the dry grass sinketh down in the flame, so their root shall be as rottenness, and their blossom shall go up as dust; because they have rejected the law of Jehovah of hosts, and despised the word of the Holy One of Israel.”
This is how The New World Translation reads:
“18 Woe to those who drag along their guilt with ropes of deception And their sin with wagon cords; 19 Those who say: “Let Him speed up his work; Let it come quickly that we may see it. Let the purpose of the Holy One of Israel take place That we may know it!” 20 Woe to those who say that good is bad and bad is good, Those who substitute darkness for light and light for darkness, Those who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter! 21 Woe to those wise in their own eyes And discreet in their own sight! 22 Woe to those who are mighty in drinking wine And to the men who are masters at mixing alcoholic drinks 23 Those who acquit the wicked for a bribe And who deny justice to the righteous! 24 Therefore, just as the tongue of fire consumes the stubble And dry grass shrivels in the flames, Their very roots will rot, And their blossoms will scatter like powder, Because they rejected the law of Jehovah of armies And disrespected the word of the Holy One of Israel.”
See how easily the New World Translation reads. The meaning is exactly the same but the English is so current a child can understand what is being read. I honestly can’t imagine the amount of time it would take for an average young person to understand even the American Standard (one of the other ‘modern’ English translations) reading of that scripture. The King James is even murkier. It feels to me, the bucking by religious leaders to translate into modern English is no different than when they burned, for heresy, those early translators taking the Bible from Latin to English—they hate that people can read and get the sense of it without them. They want the Bible to seem bulky & clouded & difficult. Then, no one will read what it actually says, and they can keep lying, stealing & acting like gods & pretend to be so wise & all-knowing when the knowledge within the Bible, from God to humans, is free for the taking. You do not need a degree or years at a theological school or to earn a title to understand it & know the true God.
I am so thankful for pure worship & this organization for giving me a Bible I can read & understand. I’m thankful they encourage you to look for yourself at other translations, even easily providing them for you, to consult & see, that this translation says the same thing, but in clear, modern English.
In Russia last month, the New World Translation was banned. It is illegal for someone just like me to sit and read this bible, be it on my phone, tablet or in paper format.
Well, “woe to those who say what is good is bad”! Or shall I quote it via King James?
” Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!”
Or perhaps, in Russian?
“Горе тем, кто называет добро злом и зло добром, кто выдаёт тьму за свет и свет за тьму, горькое за сладкое и сладкое за горькое!”
I love reading Jehovah’s word the Bible & I know he will strengthen & embolden the friends in Russia to keep going until the wicked one’s roots rot & they scatter like powder. Jehovah’s enemies always end up the same way—humbled, one way or another.
With all this in mind, new tag on here, “biblical texts & quotes” for the ones I particularity like or want to attempt to memorize.
And perhaps, I’ll share them in Russian, because, you never know that someone who needs them might not just find them at the right time.