The Jackson Journal
most popular ever
The Firpo Files
July 14, 2011
28, 2011 - Aug 3, 2011)
Michael Joseph Jackson hasn't left a secret tell-all journal with me. True, he told me some secrets; but he didn't leave a
journal (at least not with me!) He did, however, have a favorite journal that is an internationally famous magazine.
And while he thoroughly enjoyed the likes of Ebony, Essence, Jet, Black
Enterprise, and other magazines of varying genres, one of his favorites was a magazine now published in a staggering
188 languages, with a phenomenal printing of over 42 million copies per issue.
until the day he died Michael enjoyed reading The Watchtower magazine, as well as other Bible-based publications
produced in some 560 languages by the Watch Tower Society.
I have several times
chronicled the prodigious nature of Watchtower printing operations in this column. But, it seems that before the ink dries
they've added several more languages! No other political, religious, educational, or secular organization comes close to the
numbers above; neither Google or Wikipedia, nor the Catholic Church or United Nations. Absolutely no one.
These facts and figures would have been out of this world to the Moonwalker, who loved being on the
leading edge of everything!
Let's take a brief tour through the pages of the
October 15, 2011, Watchtower. I'll pick two or three random points from an assortment of subjects that I think would
have interested my dear friend, Michael Joseph Jackson.
Days": Pestilence & Prosperity: "Reflect, for example, on what Jesus foretold about ‘pestilences
and food shortages.' (Luke 21:11) First, he did not say that these would affect all areas simultaneously or to the same degree.
Rather, he stated that these would occur ‘in one place after another.' So we cannot expect the same events everywhere
at the same time.
"Second, shortly after mentioning food shortages, Jesus
indicated that some of his followers would have to be alert not to overeat: ‘Pay attention to yourselves that your hearts
never become weighed down with overeating.' (Luke 21:34) Thus, all Christians should not expect to experience every aspect
of the sign.
"Rather, Jesus stated: ‘When you see these things occurring,
know that the kingdom of God is near.' (Luke 21:31) Modern communication allows us to see all aspects of the sign, no matter
what we personally experience in our locality."
Christians everywhere: ‘Prove yourselves ready.' (Matt. 24:44) We should always be ready. Of course, we cannot engage
in theocratic activities all day long every day. Besides, none of us know what we will be doing the moment the great tribulation
begins. Some may be working in a field or caring for domestic chores."
such a conclusion is in harmony with the following translation of Jesus' words:
this time two men will be at work. One will be taken along by recognizable truth and thereafter act on it while the other
will be content with the status quo and abandoned to his daily way of living.
two women engage in domestic work one will be taken along by recognizable truth and thereafter act on it while the other will
be content with the status quo and abandoned to her daily way of living. Stay alert, therefore, because you don't know the
day your Lord will suddenly appear." (Matt. 24:40-42, Carr's Christian Bible) The point? Always live
as much of a godly life as you possibly can. That's what it means to "stay alert."
Where to Sit?: Of hypocritical religious leaders in his day Jesus warned that they like "the
front seats in the synagogues." (Matthew 23:6, New World Translation) Some Witnesses have apparently taken this
very seriously and completely avoid "the front seats." However, The Watchtower notes that "Some have
found that sitting near the front of the auditorium is helpful," since there are fewer distractions and concentration
Governing Body Humility: Does the Governing Body
have all the answers? "Of course, there are some topics and scriptures that our publications have not specifically addressed.
And even where we have commented on a particular Bible text, we may not have dealt with the specific question that you have
in mind. Also, some Bible accounts raise questions because not all the details are spelled out in the Scriptures. ... Neither
the branch office nor world headquarters is in a position to analyze and answer all such questions that have not been considered
in our literature."
Even so, it was still Jackson's journal. Peace and blessings
to all. Amen.