To Jehovah`s witnesses.
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SHOULD THE SERVANTS OF JEHOVAH GRUMBLE ?

     The modern servants of God like in ancient times sometimes have to deal with such display of human imperfection as grumbling. Should the servants of Jehovah grumble ?And how should those, who became the witnesses of grumbling react? In order to answer these questions, it is necessary to probe attentively the Biblical examples of grumbling among the people of Jehovah and get to know how Jehovah reacted on it. Since the essence of Jehovah is immutable in all the eternity - Mal. 3:6, it is possible to assert with confidence that His attitude towards grumbling did`t change till nowadays.
     But before consideration of the Biblical examples of grumbling, it is necessary to find out the meaning of some words, which characterize the state of grumbling.
1.  Grumbling is the "loud" or obvious for everybody expression of dissatisfaction with somebody or with something. The person who grumbles expresses his dissatisfaction as a rule through certain actions. All his actions are purposeful or, in other words, the grumbling person pursues certain objects.
2.  The actions of a grumbling person as a rule show up in the expression of dissatisfaction aloud and usually take a form of protest or complaints about somebody or something. In cases when the grumbling person finds support from the side of his associates, the grumbling of one man can outgrow in collective expression of dissatisfaction - the revolt or the rebelling. Thus it is unnecessary, that all the participants of a revolt are acquanted with the reason of collective protest - Acts 19:28-32.
3.  As a rule the grumbling person pursues the object - to draw attention to himself and to the object of grumbling and to obtain positive changes for himself.
4.The article of grumbling is the person or object which the grumbling person is displeased with.

     The most interesting and useful in the whole situation, related to the grumbling is the analysis of reasons, why sometimes the people of Jehovah declared dissatisfaction. Why? Because to remove the consequences of grumbling is much more difficult, than not to permit the rebelling - to remove the reason. The analysis of the resons of grumbling in the Biblical examples of old times shows that mainly the grumbling arose up for three reasons:

1.  Injustice to somebody or to something, breaking the principles of Jehovah - 2Chron 26:16-18 or resulting in the reduced circumstances, in which the grumbling person doesn`t want to stay. - Exodus 16:2,3; Acts 6:1 - see the table.
2.  When the grumbling person misunderstands something. - John 6:41,43,60,61.
3.  Heart disposed to dissatisfaction - Ps 77:8.

     It is possible to remove the first two reasons without special difficulties, having recovered justice or having explained additionally what the grumbling person finds it difficult to understand. As for the third reason, it is only up to Jehovah to remove - His word is able to change the hearts of all, who wish to change to the best - Hebr 4:12, Jer 23:29.
     Below you can see the table, in which there are some Biblical examples of grumbling of old times with the analysis of reasons, resulting in grumbling. In those cases the attitude of Jehovah and His representatives towards the situations is described, and also the methods of solution of similar problems in Israel and in the first christian congregations. Probing attentively the text of the Scriptures given in the table, the modern servant of Jehovah will be able to get on his own a clear idea of how he must act in different situations, if he meets grumbling, in order not to incur on himself the anger of Jehovah and to learn to act correctly. After the table the Biblical methods of solution the problems are given, which arise sometimes in modern christian congregations. They will help to remove the reasons of dissatisfaction and grumbling.

TABLE OF BIBLICAL EXAMPLES

The object of grumbling The grumbling person The reson of grumbling The attitude of Jehovah and His representatives
Jehovah is the sovereign of the Universe - Genesis 3:1-5 The perfect angel appointed by Jehovah -Jes 28:14 Vanity, the desire to be a god for people and to use the glory of Jehovah - Jes 28:13-19 - the heart located to dissatisfaction Jehovah passed the capital sentence, having allowed however to become the god of this age for some historical period 2 Kor 4:3,4
Moses - Exodus 16:2,3 - lack of food Israel people who have just left Egypt Misunderstanding of importance of the measure, conducted by Jehovah, namely - its spiritual side - to be the representatives of Jehovah on the Earth, to have close relations with Him and to become the forefathers of Christ Heeded their grumbling - Ex 16:12, kindly took into account their feebleness and desires of flesh, because they had not given yet the realised promise to serve Him and were not obliged to endure difficulties only because Jehovah began to carry out His intentions
Jehovah, Moses - Numbers 11:1,4,18,20 - lack of food Israel people who have already given the promise to serve Jehovah on their own will - Exodus 19:8 Absence of spiritual sight and thinking, unwillingness to realise the spiritual side of union with Jehovah, an ungrateful and carnal heart - the heart disposed to dissatisfaction - Ps 77:32-37, Deut 9:5a, 6,7. Passed the capital sentence to all, who allowed the desire of flesh to crush down the spirituality - Numbers 11:20,33. All who fell up on meat, revealed the lustful tendencies - Num 11:34; the others survived and continued their way to the land of Jehovah
Moses and Aaron - Numbers 16:2-33 Korah - an authoritative person in the people of Jehovah (servant at a tabernacle) and his accomplices Envy, pride, vanity, unwillingness to submit to Moses - a shepherd (they thought themselves to be prominent people) - Exodus 3:1, Numbers 16:2 - absence of spiritual vision of That Person who was after Moses - the heart disposed to dissatisfaction Passed the capital sentence to all the participants of the revolt, but left alive those who -didn`t support the revolt - Numbers 16:32,33; 26:11
Saul - the first king of Israel, appointed by Jehovah - 1Sam 9:15-17 Military people who rose against the order of the king to kill Jonathan - 1Sam 14:45 Injustice in attitude to Jonathan who according to Lev 5:4-6 shouldn`t be killed after he admitted his guilt, because he violated the pledge, not knowing about it Did not condemn people, moveable with the conscience, for insubordination to the order of the anointed sovereign of God
Saul - the first king of Israel King`s servants who rose against the king`s order to kill the priests of Jehovah -1Sam 22:17 Dissatisfaction with Saul, Because God stopped to help Saul and turned away from him - 1Sam 23:7,13 Injustice to the servants of Jehovah, violation of the commandment - Ex 20:13 Dissatisfaction with Saul, Because God stopped to help Saul and turned away from him - 1Sam 23:7,13
David - the second who was chosen by Jehovah, the just king of Israel - 1 Sam 16:12,13 Joab - the nephew of David and his military leader stood up against the order to count Israel - 1 Chron 21:1-6 because he knew that it was objectionable for Jehovah Injustice in relation to the law of Jehovah - Ex 30:12-14, which didn`t allow to do the calculation at own discretion. Jehovah Himself gave the orders who and when should count His people Punished David for violation of the order 2 Chron 24:10,12. Joab`s dissatisfaction was just
Uzziah (Azariah) - Judaic king 80 priests of the temple expressed their protest and didn`t let the king incense to Jehovah - 2Chron26:16-19 Injustice in relation to the law of Jehovah -in regard to that who has the right to do religious rites - Numbers 3:10 Punished the king with leprosy - 2Chron 26:11
Noble and commanding persons in the people of Jehovah of the days of reconstruction of Jerusalem - Nehem 5:1,7 People who reconstructed the walls of Jerusalem Injustice in relation to those people who worked for Jehovah. The noblest did not work for Him - Nehem 3:5, but using their power they violated the principle of Jehovah - Lev 25:35-37 Neheniah - a faithful representative of Jehovah - recovered justice, revealed violators and corrected their wrong thinking - Nehem 5: 6,7,9,12. If people hadn`t grumbled in this case, lawlessnesses of commanding people wouldn`t have been revealed
Jesus Christ - John 6:41-43,60,61 Israelites and some disciples of Christ Misunderstanding of spiritual sense of words of Jesus about His flesh and blood Jesus didn`t condemn all who left Him and allowed all the persons who wanted to leave not to be His disciples. All who consciously left Him showed the attitude towards the son of Jehovah and signed their sentence themselves - John 3:18
The owner of the house from the parable of Jesus - Jehovah - Luke 20:10,11, who called the persons interested to work for Him The workers of the owner who endured all burdens of daily intense heat - the servants of Jehovah who make a lot of efforts in service to Him and are with Him for a long time Envy, desire to control the situation, mistrust to the owner, absence of love to the fellow men and that is to the Owner - 1John 4:20 - the heart disposed to dissatisfaction, because the wicked and wrong thinking comes from the heart - Matt 15:19 Jehovah - a kind Owner - condemned them and showed how to correct the wrong thinking: a person should learn to be glad that Jehovah attracts and will attract to Him the people till the last moment before Armageddon, and He will give the same reward to all who was attracted - paradisial life - irrespective of that, how much time and how many forces they will spend for Him
The Hebrews from christian congregation - Acts 6:1 Not the Hebrews - the other members of christian congregation Injustice in relation to the widows who were not the Hebrews and were neglected The apostles accepted and analysed the just complaint of their brothers and didn`t begin to consider them troublemakers in the congregation. They took measures humbly in order to correct the situation - Acts 6:3; Watchtower 1.12.97, page 30
John, the apostle of Christ - 3John 9,10 Diotrephes, the head of the congregation who had the power to accept somebody to the congregation Vanity, carnal thinking, desire to dominate and to subordinate everybody not to Christ, but to himself - the heart disposed to dissatisfaction Apostle John - the representative of Jehovah and anointed disciple of His son - disrobed the wrong attitude of Diotrephes towards the service to Jehovah and gave him the chance to stop acting wrong in order to be rescued Jes3:18
Apostle Paul - 2Cor 10:2,7,10, 1Cor 9:2,3 Brothers from Corinth congregation who didn`t trust Paul - 2Cor 13:3 Injustice in relation to the principles of Jehovah - Rom 14:4, biased, preconceived opinion about His servant Paul disrobed the false brothers, he pleaded to correct the wrong thinking - 2 Cor10:3-9, 11:12-15. Later he showed the principle - Phil 1:15-18
Apostle Peter who acted hypocritically with the heathens in front of the Hebrews - Gal 2:12,13 The heathens who came to belief and apostle Paul who rose against such not christian behaviour - Gal 2:11 Injustice in relation to the principles of Jehovah, because the God is unbiased - Acts 10:34 - and also the weakness of imperfect flesh which sometimes has the fear in front of the "authoritative"people - Proverbs 29:25 ; misunderstanding of spiritual truth which releases from any kind of fear - John 8:32 Paul disrobed the hypocrisy of Peter in order to make him understand and not to stumble the heathens who just came to belief - Gal 2:11-14 He showed the principle - Gal 4:18. Peter, in his turn wasn`t offended with it, but accepted the lesson humbly
The elder of a modern congregation of witnesses of Jehovah and the leader of the group for studiing the Bible and the books of WT society Members of the group - after the meeting had been adjurned from 19 o`clock to 17 o`clock because it was more convenient to the leader of the group. As a result the most members of the group couldn`t visit the meeting for at that time they had to be at work Injustice of an elder in relation to the principles of Jehovah - to use the power given to him by Jehovah for creation and blessing of the congregation and to think more about the comfort of brothers, than about his own comfort- Jes 34:2b, 1Cor 10:33, 2Cor 10:8b The elder analysed the reason of dissatisfaction, corrected the situation and sheduled some other day for the meeting. As a result all the members of the group could visit it.


     From the table it becomes obviously, that at all times people grumbled or expressed their dissatisfaction, mainly at those who "commanded" among the people of Jehovah and even at the Ruler. However not in all cases the dissatisfaction or insubordination was wrong from the point of view of Jehovah. Moreover in some cases exactly due to the grumbling lawlessness from the side of those who commanded was revealed and removed.
     In modern christian congregations can also be some disagreements as grumbling at responsible brothers, at their decisions or at each other, because all of us are very far from perfection and have not developed the spiritual thinking to a full degree so far. And if similar problems sometimes arise, they must be solved, the resons of grumbling should be removed. It is necessary not to let the grumbling distribute so that those who have just come to belief don`t stumble. For this purpose the modern servants should learn:
    1.how to solve the problem of grumbling, if it has already arisen
    2.how not to permit the grunbling
in order not to incur the anger of Jehovah at themselves and at their brothers and sisters and to learn how to act correctly according to the rules of the Creator.

A few Biblical recommendations about how to settle the misunderstanding, resulting in grumbling.

    1.  An elder, having heard the grumbling or having known about it, certainly reacts on it, not accusing hastily those who grumble in order not to violate the calmness of the congregation, and remembering that brothers and sisters belong not to him, but to Jehovah - Judges 8:23. Thus he tries not to permit that brothers and sisters remained in ignorance or bewilderment concerning dissatisfaction - Deut 13:12,14; 1Thes 4:6,9; 5:14.
    2. An elder will find out the reason of grumbling obligatory, because if you don`t know the reason, it is impossible to remove the consequences - Jac 4:1-3,5:18; 2Sam23:3.
    3. In case if the reson of grumbling is the unjustice - the violation of the Biblical principle in relation to the person who grumbles, an elder will undertake necessary measures to correct the situation and to remove the reason of grumbling - Jes 33:8,9 - that is he will recover the justice (see in the table columns 3 and 4 - cases of injustice).
    4. In case if the reson of grumbling is misunderstanding of something, an elder will make efforts to explain the brother the moments of misunderstanding and thus to remove the reason of grumbling - Mark 8:17, triing to choose the words carefully -Mark 12:37b (see in the table columns 3 and 4 - cases of misunderstanding)
    5. In case if the reson of grumbling is weakness of flesh or opinion of human eyes - the heart disposed to dissatisfaction - but there is no violation of Biblical principles from the side of the person whom the grumbling person is displeased with - an elder will give the grumbling person the advice impelling to rise spiritually and to work on the improvement of the symbolic heart based on the Bible.
    6. To eliminate the grumbling as the sign of display of imperfection in the congregations of the people of Jehovah, in all cases of misunderstanding and dissatisfaction with each other it is necessary to solve them according to the principle - Matt 18:15-17, always remembering: even if my brother and sister is unfair and wrong to me, I don`t become better in the eyes of Jehovah because of it.


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