Jehovah`s Witness/congregation comparison
QUESTION: What are the main differences between the congregation of Jehovah's Witnesses and other congregations?
ANSWER: Greetings Conan
Thank you for writing.
May I ask for more details please. When you say congregations are you referring to different congregations of Jehovah's Witnesses or are you referring to different "christian" religions (denominations) eg Catholic, Baptists, Mormons, Presbyterian etc
I look forward to being able o answer you
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QUESTION: The latter(other denominations)
Thank you for the clarification, I appreciate that.
There are many religions (denominations) that use the Bible as the basses for their teachings, and there are many difference between some of them, so I will limit my comments to the main differences
between Jehovah's Witnesses and what many people call the “main stream” churches of Christendom such as the Catholics, Church Of England, Presbyterian, Baptists etc I will put a basic
view of what they teach followed by our view in bold letters The other churches I will refer to as “they” and to Jehovah' s Witnesses as “we”. At this time I will not give the scriptural support of each idea as that will take a lot of time, but, if you want our scriptural answer to any of these things, please let me know. These are not in any particular order of importance they are just as the difference come to mind
1) They celebrate Christmas as the birth of Jesus and Easter as his death We do not celebrate Christmas because Jesus was not born in December and even though we remember the death of Jesus each year we do not celebrate Easter because of its non Christian origins
2) They believe in a doctrine called the trinity - that Jesus the holy spirit (or holy ghost) and the Father are co equal and all make up God. We believe that Jesus was a created being, is not equal to God the Father and that the holy spirit is not a person, and that the trinity idea is an introduced doctrine based on pagan ideologies. In English, the name of God is Jehovah
3) They believe that God torments unrepentant humans in a fiery hell for all eternity We do not believe that a God of love would do such a thing. The idea of a fiery hell is also an introduced pagan idea based on mistranslated Hebrew and Greek words
4) They believe that the good and faithful will all go to heaven when they die. They have varying ideas as to the future of the earth from being completely destroyed by fire from God or just going on as it is. We believe that Gods purpose for the earth is to restore it its original condition – a perfect place for mankind to live where death will be no more. So the earths future is to be a home for mankind without any national boundaries and government. The only government being Gods We believe only a select few will go to heaven for the purpose of being Kings and priests with Jesus,
5) They believe that Jesus rose from the dead in the same body as he had when he died We believe that Jesus rose from the dead as a spirit
6) Most of those churches have a paid clergy that do the teaching We do not have a paid clergy. All members are taught to be teachers of Gods word and our activity for teaching goes outside the congregation to the people in general in our door to door activity and trying to find people wherever they may be
7) They have no problem in supporting mankind governments. They get involved in lobbying for them , voting them in or out of power, joining their armed forces, saluting their nations flags saying the nations oath of allegiance We have no part in politics in any nation, do not vote, will not join any armed forces, salute any flag or say the oath of allegiance to any nation, as we put all our confidence in Gods government
8) They have various ideas as to what is involved in salvation. Most say all one has to do is believe in God and you will be saved, some say that a little more is involved. That you must have faith. Nearly all of them wrongly say that we believe salvation is by works We believe No amount of good works will ever save us - salvation is a free gift in the sense that God did not have to offer us salvation but he did because of his love for mankind. We also say that we must do more that just believe, we must have faith. That we show our faith in the provision for salvation by our actions in other words our life shows that we do not take for granted the gift that God has provided for salvation.
9) Just what they say we are being saved from I have never been really clear on, or why salvation is needed. So I can not give you the general belief on that matter. We say that we are being saved from the effects of Adams sin, that is death. When Adam was created he was never meant to die as long as he obey God. He disobeyed God before he could have any children that caused sin and he passed sin and death on to all of us so our salvation is the ultimate reversal of that, bringing us back to what God intended for mankind when we created us
Those are the main
difference in DOCTRINE that I can think of right at this time. There are many difference in the way of EXPLANATIONS of Bible prophecy where we vary from the other churches but that list is very long.
Sometimes people say that I do not express myself clearly, so I hope I have said things in an understandable manner, please feel free to ask for clarification on anything I have said or for further information.