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Jehovah’s Witnesses

AWAKE! MARCH 2012

 Young People Ask

Is It Wrong to Be Popular?

Fill in the word that completes the following statement:

It is ․․․․․ good to be popular.

  1. A. always
  2. B. sometimes
  3. C. never

THE correct answer is “B.” Why? Because to be popular simply means to be liked by a lot of people—and that’s not always wrong! The Bible foretold that Christians would be “a light of the nations” and that people would be drawn to them. (Isaiah 42:6; Acts 13:47) In that sense, it can be said that Christians are popular.

Did you know?

Jesus was popular. Even as a young person, he gained “favor with God and men.” (Luke 2:52) And the Bible says that when Jesus became an adult, “great crowds followed him from Galilee and Decapolis and Jerusalem and Judea and from the other side of the Jordan.”Matthew 4:25.

Why was that proper?

Because Jesus wasn’t seeking glory or pursuing popularity, and he wasn’t desperate for others’ approval. Jesus simply did what was right—a stance that sometimes brought him favorable attention. (John 8:29, 30) At the same time, Jesus realized that any approval he won from the often-fickle public would be temporary. He acknowledged that in time people would put him to death!Luke 9:22.

The Bottom Line:

Popularity is like wealth. Having it isn’t always wrong. The problem lies in what people do to obtain—or maintain—it.

Warning!

Many young people will do anything to be popular. Some are people pleasers who follow the crowd. Others are bullies who try to force people to admire them—even if only out of fear. *

On the following pages, we will consider those two treacherous paths to popularity. Then we’ll look at a better route.

^ par. 12 The Bible speaks of bullies called “the Nephilim,” who are also referred to as “men of fame.” Their primary interest was in promoting their own glory.Genesis 6:4.