Daniel, chapters 1-3

“At that time Daniel discreetly and cautiously spoke to Arioch the chief of the king’s bodyguard, who had gone out to kill the wise men of Babylon.”
~Daniel 2:14

Daniel and his Jewish companions had been brought from Jerusalem to Babylon to be trained in the knowledge of the Chaldeans and used in the king’s service. (Da. 1:3-7)
Babylonian culture being very superstitious, the king asked his circle of conjurers to explain to him the meaning of a dream he had without telling any of them what the dream itself was. (Da. 2:1-3)
Because this was impossible for them, the king ordered the death of all the “wise men,” including that of Daniel and his friends, who until then, ignored what was going on.
Daniel used discretion and caution when requesting information from the guard who had been sent to kill them.
Daniel set a good example of why God’s people should show respect toward government officials even when we are being treated unjustly. (1 Pe. 2:23)
As a result, Daniel was given Jehovah’s blessing and everyone’s life was spared. (Da. 2:47-49)

Ezekiel, chapters 24-27

“I will take vengeance on Edom by the hand of my people Israel.”
~Ezekiel 25:14

Since most of Ezekiel’s prophecies were executed by Babylon’s army, how was this prophecy fulfilled?
Despite also being descendants of Abraham through Isaac, the people of Edom had demonstrated hatred toward the people of Israel throughout their history. (Ps. 137:7; Am. 1:11)
When Babylonian King Nebuchadnezzar destroyed Jerusalem and took the Jews captive, Edom was apparently an ally of Babylon. (Obad. 1, 7)
Some fifty years later, though, under the new Babylonian King Nabonidus, an army that included Jewish soldiers conquered Edom, thereby fulfilling the aforementioned prophecy. (Insight on the Scriptures, Vol. I. “Edom: Later History and Disappearance.”)
Edom did not survive as a nation. (Obad. 10)
How awe-inspiring it is to see Jehovah’s prophetic justice fulfilled.

Jeremiah, chapters 39-43

“[…] You should know for a certainty that I have warned you today that your error will cost you your lives.”
~Jeremiah 42:19,20

After the Chaldeans took most of the Jews captive, the army chiefs along with the remaining people in the vicinity of Jerusalem asked the prophet to pray on their behalf and find out what God’s will for them was. (Jer. 42:1-3)
Ten days later, Jehovah gave his reply, asking them to remain there and not fear the king of Babylon. (Jer. 42:7,10,11)
But the people had allowed their fear to overcome them and were headstrong about fleeing to Egypt (Jer. 43:4-7)
Eventually, the Chaldeans extended their battles into Egypt, and that remnant did not survive (Jer. 43:10,11)
They were not necessarily evil people.
They mostly consisted of the poorest sector of the population. (Jer. 40:7)
The fact that they first sought out God’s guidance indicates that at least at one point they had the right intention. (Jer. 42:5,6)
But their subsequent decision to ignore Jehovah’s commandment and head on into Egypt without his blessing ended up having tragic consequences.
Today, God warns us that a time is coming in which he will judge all of humanity. (Mark 13:32,33; Acts 17:30,31)
If we were in the habit of praying for his guidance and then ignoring Biblical counsel, we, too, would be falling in an error that will cost us our lives.

2 Kings, chapters 23-25

“Do not be afraid of being servants to the Chaldeans. Live in the land and serve the king of Babylon, and it will go well with you.”
~2 Kings, 25:24

These words were spoken by Gedaliah, the newly appointed governor of Judah, soon after Jerusalem was destroyed by Babylon (2 Ki. 25:22).

Gedaliah was accepting Jehovah’s will for the people of Judah.

The nation as a whole had sinned time and again for hundreds of years, showing no respect toward the covenant into which their forefathers had entered into with God (Ex. 24:3-8; 34:6,7,12-16).

Jehovah had sent his people prophet after prophet to warn them of the direction in which they were headed (2 Chron. 36:15,16).

Among these prophets was Jeremiah, who told the remnants of Judah to accept God’s punishment and submit to the king of Babylon (Jer. 27:12).

Some of the people did not like the message, including a man by the name of Ishmael.

Ishmael conspired against Gedaliah and murdered him (2 Ki. 25:25).

As true Christians who preach Christ’s kingdom, we too carry an unpopular message.

Some Christians in the past have given their life for the message they proclaimed, and even today, some Jehovah’s Witnesses risk their lives to take the good news into new cultures.

For example, some of the brothers and sisters whom we had the privilege of serving with in Michoacán, Mexico, were tasked with preaching the good news in Purepecha Villages where the Catholic church would summon all the townspeople, much like a mob forms, and the Witnesses would be incarcerated.

Others, as can be noted in some of our Yearbooks, have lost their lives.

The risks God’s servants are willing to take to proclaim God’s message are worth noting.