IN SOME ways, sincere Bible students are like prospectors looking for gold. Such students need to work hard and keep on searching the Scriptures to find priceless wisdom. In this regard, what can we learn by considering three ways in which gold is found?
YOU FIND A NUGGET!
Imagine that you are walking near a riverbank and see what seems to be a tiny pebble reflecting the sunlight. You stoop down and are delighted to find a gold nugget. It is smaller than a match head and rarer than a high-quality diamond. Of course, you look around to see if there are more nuggets to be found.
Similarly, on a memorable day some time ago, one of Jehovah’s servants may have called at your door to discuss the message of hope found in the Bible. Perhaps you vividly recall the moment when you discovered your first spiritual gold nugget, so to speak. That may have happened when you first saw God’s name, Jehovah, in the Bible. (Ps. 83:18) Or perhaps when you learned that you could become Jehovah’s friend. (Jas. 2:23) You knew immediately that you had found something better than gold! And you may have been eager to find more spiritual nuggets.
YOU FIND MORE!
Tiny specks or flakes of gold sometimes accumulate in creeks and rivers. This is called alluvial gold. In a single season, hardworking prospectors may find in such deposits several pounds of gold, worth tens of thousands of dollars.
When you began to study the Bible with one of Jehovah’s Witnesses, you may have felt like a prospector who pans a rich deposit of gold. Meditating on one Bible verse after another likely added to your fund of knowledge, something that enriched you spiritually. As you eagerly scooped up those precious Bible truths, you learned how you could draw close to Jehovah and keep yourself in his love with everlasting life in view.
Just as a prospector seeks to find precious deposits of alluvial gold, you may have been very diligent in searching for valuable spiritual riches. After learning the fundamental Bible truths, you were likely moved to take the steps that led to dedication and baptism.
KEEP ON SEARCHING!
A prospector may find tiny quantities of gold inside igneous rocks. Some patches of such rocks contain concentrations of gold high enough to mine the ore and crush it to extract the gold. At first glance, the gold may not be visible in the ore. Why not? Because high-quality ore may contain only about 0.3 troy ounce (10 g) of gold per ton of rock! Nevertheless, to the prospector it is worth the effort to mine it.
Effort is also needed after a person has moved beyond “the primary doctrine about the Christ.” (Heb. 6:1, 2) You need to work hard to extract fresh points and practical lessons from your Bible study. So, what can you do to make sure that your personal Bible study remains productive, even though you may have been studying the Scriptures for years?
Remain eager to learn. Pay close attention to details. Continue putting forth effort, and you will find valuable Scriptural nuggets of divine wisdom and guidance. (Rom. 11:33) To increase your knowledge of the Scriptures, make good use of the research tools available in your language. Patiently look for the direction you need and for answers to your Bible questions. Ask others what scriptures and articles they have found to be especially helpful and encouraging. Share interesting points that you have discovered during your study of God’s Word.
Of course, your goal is not simply to increase factual knowledge. The apostle Paul warned that “knowledge puffs up.” (1 Cor. 8:1) Therefore, work hard to remain humble and strong in faith. Regular family worship and personal Bible study will help you to live in harmony with Jehovah’s standards and will motivate you to help others. Above all, you will rejoice because you have found something much better than gold.