Jehovah`s Witness/Have the WT leaders ever say...?

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QUESTION: Dear Brenton

According to you would you say:

That the WT leaders have ever said :

1)That any organization or individual who claims to be the interpreter of Gods sacred Word or Prophecies found in the Bible are lying?

2)That God Himself is the sole interpreter as Supreme court and judge of His words and prophecies found in the Bible and that he merely uses the remnant/FDS after Jesus who is the courts official mouthpiece revealed it to them via his angels to publish it?

3)That God showed that magazine called the Watchtower should be used for that purpose!

Thanks for taking your time to ponder my question!

Have a great day!

ANSWER: Hello Johan,

Thank you for your questions.

I am going to assume that you are specifically asking about "Bible Prophecy" and not Bible doctrine in general.

Question one

1)That any organization or individual who claims to be the interpreter of Gods sacred Word or Prophecies found in the Bible are lying?

Answer one

Of hand, without looking through all that has been published I do not ever recall any thing ever being said specifically about the understanding of prophecy. Prophecy is something very difficult to get correct.  As you are no doubt aware our understanding of different Bible prophecies have changed.  As far as I am concerned understanding a Bible prophecy is not important for salvation.  Trying to understand prophecy, serves to keep one awake spiritually and not to nod off so to speak and become lazy in serving God. Prophecy is different to solidly based Bible "doctrine".  For me, lying, in this context, is deliberately teaching an understanding of a  prophecy that is known by the one teaching it, to be wrong.  As far as understanding prophecy is concerned, I do not know any group that deliberately misrepresents their understanding of Bible prophecy. Doctrine, on the other hand is different.  There is ample evidence from history to show how different doctrines were introduced to various Christian theologies to show what is true according to the Bible and what is a lie.  

Question two

2)That God Himself is the sole interpreter as Supreme court and judge of His words and prophecies found in the Bible and that he merely uses the remnant/FDS after Jesus who is the courts official mouthpiece revealed it to them via his angels to publish it?

Answer two

Yes in a way God is the sole interpreter of Bible Prophecy, not that he somehow transmits the interpretation to some one, but that Gods Word the Bible (and seeing the Bible is inspired of God [God breathed]then by allowing the Bible to speak, God interprets prophecy).  As far as the information being given to "Jesus  who is the courts official mouthpiece revealed it ... via his angels to publish". NO.  Rutherford once published he thought it was angels that gave him understanding. This was due to his understanding of the roll angels are said to play in spreading the kingdom message (Revelation 14:6,7  "And I saw another angel flying in midheaven, and he had everlasting good news to declare as glad tidings to those who dwell on the earth, and to every nation and tribe and tongue and people, 7 saying in a loud voice: “FEAR God and give him glory, because the hour of the judgment by him has arrived, and so worship the One who made the heaven and the earth and sea and fountains of waters" (NWT)

Because God is the reveler of secrets it means that a lot of study, examining the texts and wording very carefully.  The comparisons of various Bibles has helped change some understandings, as different translators have rendered words or phrases differently.  This causes a closer examination of what ancient Bible languages have said and comparing the way a word is used in different locations and contexts. An example of that is the understanding of the word "generation"

Question 3

3)That God showed that magazine called the Watchtower should be used for that purpose!


Answer three

It depends on what you mean by that.  God has never out rightly showed that any magazine is the one that should be used, not in the way God used to work in the past when he had "inspired" prophets that could use great signs to demonstrate God was with a particular event or person. Since the last of the inspired apostles died (over 2000 years ago), God has never sent an angel like he did to Abraham for example, or performed miracles such as a resurrection like he did with Elijah, nor has he used visions like the Apostle John.  However it is felt that God has blessed the use of the Watchtower because of the difficult times that the magazine has had especially during the first world war.  It is now the most widely read magazine on earth.  The last figures I have show it is published in 185 languages and has a circulation of more than 42 million copies each issue.  There are only 7 million active JWs.

Unlike the Bible, nothing anyone says or prints today is "inspired of God" .  Any one wanting to understand Gods word must be doing the best they can to fulfill the commissions to preach the Good news of the Kingdom in all the world (Matt 24:14; 28 19,20 ).  Doing their utmost to bring their thinking in line with Bible principles (Romans 12:2; ). Being willing to change when they see what they are doing goes against Gods ways. (Ephesians 4:23,24 ) Based on those things, despite the mistakes that have been made, I see JWs as striving to live up to the name of Gods People.  Still we can not rely on any organization to save us.  The first century Christians wer told (Philippians 2:12-18 "Consequently, my beloved ones, in the way that YOU have always obeyed, not during my presence only, but now much more readily during my absence, keep working out YOUR own salvation with fear and trembling ; 13 for God is the one that, for the sake of [his] good pleasure, is acting within YOU in order for YOU both to will and to act. 14 Keep doing all things free from murmurings and arguments, 15 that YOU may come to be blameless and innocent, children of God without a blemish in among a crooked and twisted generation, among whom YOU are shining as illuminators in the world, 16 keeping a tight grip on the word of life, that I may have cause for exultation in Christ’s day, that I did not run in vain or work hard in vain. 17 Notwithstanding, even if I am being poured out like a drink offering upon the sacrifice and public service to which faith has led YOU, I am glad and I rejoice with all of YOU. 18 Now in the same way YOU yourselves also be glad and rejoice with me."

Being part of a group of like minded people is important (Hebrews 10:24,25 ),  That is why congregations were established with appointed men to "Shepard the flock  of God in YOUR care, not under compulsion, but willingly" (1 Peter 5:27 ) and to  "Be obedient to those who are taking the lead among YOU and be submissive, for they are keeping watch over YOUR souls as those who will render an account; that they may do this with joy and not with sighing, for this would be damaging to YOU."  Hebrews 13:17 .





 


---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Brendon thanks for answering !

To my first question you swifted the question to Bible understanding when that was not the question, while the question deal with interpretation and equally Bible prophecies found in the Bible and what your leaders claimed !

So I will answer them for you from WT material!

Answer to question 1!

WT July 1 1943 p. 202

The claim of any individual or organization to be the interpreter of Gods sacred word is false or misleading , no individual or organization can truly presume to sit as the tribunal of interpretation of God,s scared word

Continuing on the very same page they made it clear that the FDS/Remnant were NOT APPOINTED by God as interpreter either !

WT July 1 1943 p. 202 - 203  
This does not signify that the Society or faithful Remnant of Jehovah,s Witness are an earthly tribunal APPOINTED to interpret His scriptures and prophecies      

So Brendon if no organization or individual which include he FDS/Remnant of JW are not appointed or responsible  for interpreting EITHER the Sacred Word of God or His prophecies in the Bible then who is did they say ?

GOD!!

On page 198 of this WT in 1943 they make it clear that God is the Supreme Court judge and the sole interpreter of his Scared word and prophecies found in the Bible

Christ Jesus the king has not entrusted that office to them.The supreme court still interprets thank God and Christ Jesus the courts official mouthpiece of interpretation reserves to himself that office as head of Jehovahs Faithful wise servant class!

He merely uses the servant class to PUBLISH THE INTERPRETATION after Christ Jesus reveals it !

You said they never said Jesus revealed it via the angles as courts official mouthpiece

Read for yourself :

WT July 1 1943 p. 202 - 203  

Thereafter in due season he calls such fulfillment or clarification of prophecy or scripture to the attention of the FDS! Thereby He makes them responsible to make known such scriptures to the household of faith !

HOW ??

Preparation 1933 p. 36 - 37

Certain duties and kingdom interest have been committed by the Lord to his angels which include the TRANSMITTING OF INFORMATION to God,s anointed people on the earth for their aid and comfort. Even though we cannot understand how it is done , we know they do it      

Just six pages earlier of this same book

Preparation 1933 p. 28
The PROOF is that the interpretation of PROPHECY does NOT proceed from MAN , but that Lord Jesus the chief one in Jehovah,s organization sends the necessary information to his people by and through the angels.

Seems like Rutherford claimed a lot more than you said he did!! He claimed they TRANSMITTED INFO which happens to be the interpretation of prophecy  !

I am left to wonder how they could have made these claims with a 100% failure record in predictions and interpreting prophecies up to date and ever changing teachings !

I am also left to wonder how they could have made these fantastic claims  while saying they have never claimed to be inspired!

Regarding my third question whether God SHOWED that the WT magazine should be used for that purpose

They said :

The Lord has graciously provided for the publication of His message in the form of publications that the people may be informed of the truth ..those books do not contain the opinion of men!  Riches 1936 p. 353 - 354

It should be expected that Lord has a means of communication to His people and He has clearly SHOWN that the magazine called the Watchtower should be used for that purpose Yearbook 1939  p. 85

Just insactly Brendon how did God go about to SHOW them that magazine called the WT should be used as his means of communication ! Where can we read about it in the Bible ?

Now I notice you mentioned inspiration !

Can you tell us where did God set a standard as test that if someone claims to be a prophet /Channel of communication for God that one must test whether he claimed to be inspired or that the criteria whereby one should judge whether one is a true or false prophet is whether he claimed inspiration?

Thanks again for pondering my question Brendon ! May the LOrd bless you and have a nice day !

ANSWER: Hello again Johan

Thank you for your follow up. Sorry for the delay.

I cant help but notice that you have been getting information from anti JW web sites.  I am aware of that old site as I used to have a copy of it on my old computer.  

I am sorry I did not make myself crystal  clear last time.  I have to disagree with you that I switched the  the meaning of question one from interpreting prophecy to understand the the Bible. I just did not make it clear to you.  I talked “about the understanding of prophecy , meaning that JWs and (In MY Mind) no doubt most people, that like Bible prophecy, would come to some understanding of what a Bible prophecy would mean.  Their understanding would be their “interpretation” of that prophecy. What I was saying is that JWs like any other group have an “UNDERSTANDING” of Bible prophecy, therefore an understanding equals their interpretation.  Is that any clearer for you.

In question one you seemed to be asking if a wrong “interpretation” is lying.  Well.... that is the way I understood (interpreted) your words.  I will paraphrase my answer.  …  I answered that by saying,,,,, in my view ,  a wrong understanding ( interpretation) is not lying because prophecy is not an easy “thing” for anyone to understand.    I said “For me, lying, in this context, is deliberately teaching an understanding of a prophecy that is known by the one teaching it, to be wrong.   I also went on to say “As far as understanding prophecy is concerned, I do not know any group that deliberately misrepresents their understanding of Bible prophecy     JWs have not DELIBERATLY given out an understanding ( interpretation) of a prophecy that they knew to be wrong .  Like so many others that try to understand (interpret) Bible prophecy they made wrong assumptions, based on what knowledge they had at that time.

It also seems as if we both misunderstood each other in regard to question 2.   I understood you to be asking about the present time when you asked

quote
“That God Himself is the sole interpreter as Supreme court and judge of His words and prophecies found in the Bible and that he merely uses the remnant/FDS after Jesus who is the courts official mouthpiece revealed it to them via his angels to publish it?”
end quote

The way you worded that, seemed to me, as if you were talking about the present, and I answered in the present. HOWEVER I also di not try to hide the past. I made a comment on the past as to what Rutherford understood.   I said

Quote
As far as the information being given to "Jesus  who is the courts official mouthpiece revealed it ... via his angels to publish". NO. Rutherford once published he thought it was angels that gave him understanding.
End quote

I was well aware of what Rutherford had said, although I could not remember all the details. You kindly gave the quotation from the book Preparation as to where Rutherford said that, that saved me having to try to find it.  Did you notice in the quotes you gave his caveat on that?   I  will gave an extended quote directly from that book which I have in front of me  starting on  page 36 “Certain duties and kingdom interest have been committed by the Lord to his angels, which include the transmitting of information to God's anointed people on the earth for their aid and comfort.  Even though we cannot understand ” continuing to page 37 “ how the angels transmit this information , we know they do it; and the scriptures and the facts show that it is done (Matt. 25:31; Jude 14,15; Zech, 14:5) This conclusion is fully supported by the words of Zechariah's prophecy: “AND, BEHOLD, THE ANGEL THAT TALKED WITH ME WENT FORTH AND ANOTHER ANGEL WENT OUT TO MEET HIM, AND SAID UNTO HIM, RUN, SPEAK TO THE YOUNG MAN, SAYING, JERUSALEM SHALL BE INHABITED AS TOWNS WITHOUT WALLS FOR THE MULTITUDE OF MEN AND CATTLE THEREIN” (2:3,4) There the angle of the Lord is commanded to make hast and tell the message of comfort to the inquiring saints on the earth. ”  (CAPITALS original  ITALICS and bold mine)  

Now notice two things 1) Even though we cannot understand how the angels transmit this information  and 2)  This conclusion he came to was fully supported by his understanding of the words of Zechariah's prophecy

Rutherford was voicing what he understood from Bible prophecy , he did not understand the workings of it, but honestly believed that Bible prophecy indicated that angels would continue to somehow transmit   needed information.  He thus uses the Bible to support what he understood.  Keep in mind what else you quoted and put it into context here

Lets look at some more information from page 28 of the book Preparation. I will start from page 27  “Zechariah inquired of the Lord the meaning of these men on horses, and the angel talking to him explained it to him “THEN SAID I, O MY LORD, WHAT ARE THESE? AND THE ANGEL THAT TALKED WITH ME SAID UNTO ME, I WILL SHEW THEE ” turning to page 28  “WHAT THESE BE” (1:9 ) This question is propounded for the  benefit of those faithful ones of the remnant now on earth, and the angel of the  Lord brings them the needed information in answerer to their questions (Rev.1:1)  This is proof is that the interpretation of prophecy does not proceed from man , but that Lord Jesus the chief one in Jehovah,s organization sends the necessary information to his people by and through his holy angels. “AND THE MAN THAT STOOD AMONG THE MYRTLE TREES ANSWERED AND SAID, THESE ARE THEY WHOM THE LORD HATH SENT TO WALK TO AND FRO THROUGH THE EARTH.” (1:10) In the vision these represent Jehovah's host that he uses to express his wrath against his enemy. (Rev 14:20) ” [ Capitals original Italics mine )

Rutherford knew that no one was inspired, he did not know  “how the angels transmit this information”, so he is guilty of  misunderstanding Bible prophecy and not deliberately setting out to mislead people.

You quote from the book Riches, but did not finish the quote so I will --- “The Lord has graciously provided for the publication of His message in the form of publications that the people may be informed of the truth …..Those books do not contain the opinion of men. They merely enable you to locate the words of the Lord and to find out the very things you desire to know; and doing this, you are obeying God's commandments  ” ---  What Rutherford was saying is that for most people who want to understand the Bible they find it difficult to know where to look.  The publications that he mentioned (he reefers to a list) are designed to point people in the right direction in the Bible to get a discussion on a particular subject.  All commentary is backed up by what the Bible says. (he was using the KJV).  By backing up commentary with the Bible he could say that “ Those books do not contain the opinion of men”



Why did Rutherford feel that the Watchtower was  used by God as the tool for dispensing Bible truth.  That has to do with the history of the magazine .  It has never missed an issue since it started in 1879.  During World War one, the clergy in America (where the printing was done at that time) had become very upset over a book that was published that condemned a lot of actions of the clergy.  A number of influential clergy put a lot of pressure on the Government to ban book the Magazine and close down all operations. Those associated with the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society were viewed as traitors to America  This pressure led to eight  board members being imprisoned for sedition.  They were given heavy prison sentences and were sent to the federal penitentiary in Atlanta, Georgia, U.S.A. Nine months later they were released.

The were other problems during the war.  A shortage of paper to print on, a shortage of coal to heat the  and residence of those that worked in what we call “Bethel” for others, it would be what you call the headquarters there looked as if they would have to close up shop .    Failure to obtain coal made them move away from Brooklyn.  The  Watchtower at that time was printed by “out side” sources, that is the WTBTS did not do their own  printing.  There were labour difficulties in the printing industry and problems in the paper market.  The WTS  wanted a more dependable arrangement for printing. They  prayed about the matter and watched for the Lord’s leadings.

First of all, where should they locate the Society’s offices? Should they move the headquarters  back to Brooklyn? They wanted to know if it was the Lords will that they move to Brooklyn

A representative was to  go to Brooklyn to see about reopening Bethel and rent premises where the Society could begin printing operations.  They desired to make a test to see if the Lord would back them.  The test was coal.  A lack of coal saw the move away from Brooklyn so it was decided if they could order 500 tones of coal. That was enough coal to fill their needs for several years.  If they could get it,  they saw that as an indication the Lord wanted them to start printing the Watchtower and other material themselves.  They also wanted  to purchase a rotary magazine press but were told that there were only a few of these in the United States and that there was no chance of getting one for many months. Nevertheless, they were confident that if it was the Lord’s will, he could open the way. They  were able to get the coal, and succeeded in purchasing a rotary press.

It was because of those events, Rutherford and those associated with the WTBTS saw that as evidence that it was Gods will that they continue printing the Watchtower.  You do not have to accept that, but they certainly did.  The Watchtower is now  published in 185 languages and has a circulation of more than 42 million copies each issue and is  the most widely read magazine on earth.







---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Thanks again for answering and sorry Ive baan quite busy so I could only reply now !

You never answered the last questions I post !

Let me quote the WT again!

They said :

GOD DID NOT APPOINT THEM AS INTERPRETERS OF EITHER THE SACRED WORD OF PROPHECIES FOUND IN THE BIBLE!!

This does not signify that the Society OR  faithful remnant of Jehovah,s Witness are an earthly tribunal APPOINTED to INTERPRET His prophecies and scriptures! WT July 1 1943 p, 202

Why??

BECAUSE GOD THEY SAID IS THE SOLE INTERPRETER OF THE SACRED WORD AND PROPHECIES FOUND IN IT !

Jehovah God is therefore the ONLY supreme court of interpretation of His inspired word WT July 1 1943 p. 203

Jehovah as the GREAT INTERPRETER make known the  meanings of the revelations in his due time and speculation of men cannot bring to light the true meaning of prophecy !!Jehovah has provided a channel the FDS class to provide spiritual food and this spiritual food which INCLUDE AMONG OTHER THINGS THE UNDERSTANDING OF PROPHECIES in the course of their fulfillments.Jehovah,s Witness themselves are ARE NOT, NOR CAN THEY BE INTERPRETERS OF PROPHECIES,but as fast as the superior authorities and Christ Jesus reveal their provided channels , that fast God,s channel publish them  WT April 1952 p. 253          

Now who reveals it to them ?

THEY SAID THE COURTS OFFICIAL MOUTHPIECE JESUS DOES IT !

He merely uses the servant class to PUBLISH the INTERPRETATION after the Supreme court by Christ Jesus REVEALS it WT July 1 1943 p. 202

How is it revealed to them ?

VIA ANGELS THEY SAID!!

This is proof that the interpretation of prophecy does not proceed from man but that the Lord Jesus the chief one in Jehovah,s, organization SENDS the necessary information to his people by and through his holy angels! Preparation 1937 p. 28

How is it done !

THEY SAID THE ANGELS WAIT FOR INSTRUCTION "

These angels are invisible to human eyes and are there to carry out the orders of the Lord. No doubt they first they hear the instruction which the Lord issues to the remnant and these invisible messengers and these invisible messengers pass on such instruction on to the remnant !! WT August 1933 P. 243

To sum it up !

1)God is the supreme Court who alone interprets His words and and prophecies

2)He did not APPOINT the FDS as interpreters of the Scared word nor the prophecies

3)He only uses the FDS to REVEAL IT and PUBLISH after Jesus revealed it to them

4)The angels pass it on after the Lord(Jesus) instructed them!

Your argument that they dont know how it is done is not changing a thing ! All that they were saying is !

ANGELS PASS ON THE INFO AFTER HEARING THE INSTRUCTION THOUGH WE DONT UNDERSTAND HOW IT IS DONE

One of the main reason why Rutherforth taught angels  pass on info was because he taught JW that:

THE HOLY SPIRIT WAS TAKEN AWAY IN 1918

By his spirit the Holy Spirit Jehovah guides or leads His  people up to a certain time and thus he did  until the comforter was taken away .. in 1918

1918... in that year the Lord Jesus came to the temple of Jehovah God .The Holy spirit had been the guide of Jehovah,s people , having performed this function was taken away ! Preservation 1932 p . 193 , 194

To remind you I own most of these publication including the full studies series so I dint get it from apostate websites as you claim!     

What the WTS has clearly said is that the FDS are not the INTERPRETERS theys said the FDS are  merely THE REVEALERS who are to publish only to REVEAL it after God has REVEALED THE MEANING TO THEM!

Answer
Hello Johan

Thank you again for your questions.

At the moment we, that is you and I, have a problem in communication. I have misunderstood things you have written and  jumped to some conclusions and I have not expressed my self in a way that you understand and you have  jumped to conclusions. I did say at the start of my first reply - “I am going to assume that you are specifically asking about "Bible Prophecy" “ -  I have re read the correspondence a few time and now I am bewildered in what it is you are trying to ask.

First I am sorry that I assume you got your material from anti JW web sites. About 10 years ago I came across your exact references to the books Preparation and Riches as well as the 1943 Watchtower and the 1939 year book. I got our my copies and dog-eared those pages and underlined those exact words. Now you assumed I was referring to apostate websites.  I did not mention  apostate websites but ANTI JW websites, as much material also comes form people who have never been JWs.  

Now I answered your first 3 questions based on what I understood you to be asking.  My fault again as I should have asked for clarification as to what you were asking.  Evidently, what I wrote is not to what you wanted to hear, so you proceeded to give me your response to what you asked.  That suggests to me that perhaps you were trying to lead me into a trap.

You quoted a small portion of a one of his works that suggested that angels conveyed the message to “him” .  In response I finished the quote.  The rest of the passage I quoted, explained why he thought that angels were used in transmitting understanding of the Gods word.  I can not do any better that that. Perhaps you did not understand his explanation.  Seeing you have the books yourself maybe you should read what he said.  He does give a biblical explanation.   I can understand what his argument was , even though I do no agree with him, I can see his point of view.

I am quite happy to try to answer your concerns but at the moment I just don't, clearly, see what they are. So perhaps it would be an idea to rethink just what it is you are wanting to ask and put it in a different way because I just do not get from what you have written what it is you want to know. As we have seen it is no good me assuming something that is nor relevant to what you want to know

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Brenton Hepburn

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I AM one of Jehovah’s Witnesses, and I am always learning. I am NOT an expert in the full sense of the word but I can answer questions on the reliability of the NWT - the so called mind control problems-so called prophecies - how being a JW affects the individual and relatives and general practices and history of Jehovah’s Witnesses. >>WARNING<< Please be aware that there are people here who ARE NOT practicing JWs. By all means ask these ones questions. Depending on the question you will get an honest answer, but, generally the answer you get, will mislead you as to what we believe, often because, they do not give ALL the relevant details. These ones will, have an agenda against JWs., and will at times give answers that are not correct in regard to JW teachings and practices. If you are after a answer from one of Jehovah’s Witnesses, please read some of the answers that the various experts have published before choosing someone. If you want to ask one of the NON JWs a question, that is fine, BUT if you want a balancing view after asking one of the NON JWs, ask a JW the same question. PLEASE ALSO NOTE: There(have been)and are, some "experts" here who are NOT always the most courteous and polite, at times are actually quite rude, that applies to both JW's and non JW's and their answers may offend, especially when they get personal and attack the character of the person and not the message. Unfortunately some here that have done that. So it IS IMPORTANT to chose an "expert" that YOU feel will best suit YOU by reading some of their past answers . . . . .

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I have been a publisher since 1964. When I first went on the internet I found a lot of negative information dealing with Jehovah’s Witnesses covering prophecy, mind control and what many said was a very bad translation of the Bible known as the NWT. It shook my faith. After may hours researching these topics I could see why some felt that way, but, I was also able to explain why there were these misleading views. I can now set matters straight for anyone that has negative information about Jehovah’s Witness to show them that such information is at best misleading and at worst dangerous lies.

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I have been a student of the Bible for many years, am trying to teach myself Biblical Greek. Was a public tax accountant for many years untill SEP 2009 when I gave it up due to health problems.

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