Jehovah`s Witness/I'm Dee

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Question
QUESTION: Hi,

I tried to read your entire explaination...I asked a sister at the hall & got clear....here it goes...1914, God's Kingdom in Heaven established....right now, God's Kingdom has not come to earth...I didn't ask this question to start trouble. Mr.Jones, has no ax to grind. He seems to be well balanced. People have the right to stay or walk. But Mr. Jones is not the issue here. I'm want to make sure that I wasn't a part of a false prophet org. I love being a part of the witnesses, I love what I do. I have the right to question. Here's the thing...we know this system will end, when who knows...all we can do is be ready. Get our lives straight & try to live by Jehovah's standards...The best way we can...Nobody is perfect...I mean in the hall or out of the hall. I have seen & heard things, but that does not stop me from going to the hall, I'm there to serve God. Yes, the org. lives by the bible but many are not doing what they are supposed to..we are all attracted to the same message, the difference is our reactions to the message.  This is off the subject a bit but to make a point...do you remember a Watchtower about a couple who were in the truth for 36 yrs. went to all the conventions, assemblies, etc...always saw dramas and talks about simplfying ones life...become a Pioneer...this couple heard the message for 36 yrs. but aquired many material things..so on the 36th yr. they felt silly because of all the material things they got..So now they decided to sell much of their stuff & become pioneers. My point...attracted to the same message...different reaction. I would love to know when the end is..yet again, maybe not..Why can't a witness just preach & teach...& let everyone know to get ready without the dates...there are no dates in the bible 'cept the Pentecost.  You can explain it until you are blue in the face..Only God knows when this will happen, even Jesus said he doesn't know. We are suppose to walk by faith not by Facts not by sight. Did any of the bible characters ever think 1975 as a year ? or 1914 or any other yr. NO..Just that they knew what God had promised..they all lived with hope..No dates...Man just has to know everything..it kills them not to know...We see the signs, Jesus gave us a pattern to look for & we are seeing it...So what do you do, you just hold on.  We know a thief is coming & so we are prepared to some extent, but when...again, only God knows. I may try to read all you wrote to me but I know you just want to make a point.  Again, I got clarification from a sister & I'm good. I'll just continue my studies, go out & give folks the good news that this is not all there is...God wants repentence. He has purposed this world for a paradise. To let folks know there is something bigger than themselves & there is someone you can rely on & help you endure trials..God is there for the Good times & The Bad. He wants to see who we really are when things are not going your way..we can all say, Jehovah is good when things are good but when they are not..Who is your God ? Thank you so much for your comments..I appreciate the time & effort you took to write it..so in a while I'll read it.. But don't talk about other people on the site whether you like them or not. You don't know Mr. Jones & neither do I. I have read his profile & he seems ok to me. He left the witnesses for a reason, you may or may not agree but he wasn't disfellowshipped. He decided to walk away. We have no right to judge him. How many times do we have to hear from the platform, don't judge or you will be judged...that means Jehovah witnesses too. You have the truth, so let it be, stop looking at others & saying they are the world & we are this or that.  Remember when Jesus was on the stake & he said..Father, take pity, for they know not what they do. I went to an assembly & a brother said this..when you see someone that does not know or have the truth or you become judgemental, just say to yourself..They don't know my father...

Thx,

Dee

ANSWER: Hello DEE,

Greetings from the "land down under". Thank you for responding to my post.  I was hoping you would.

FIRST I want to congratulate you on wanting to be sure you are making the right decision.

SECOND and this is important, you said... “ I'm there to serve God”... and that is the way it should be.

THIRD  I agree with most of what you wrote a - Quick summary  - “all we can do is be ready. Get our lives straight & try to live by Jehovah's standards...The best way we can...Nobody is perfect..many are not doing what they are supposed to..  God wants repentance....We are suppose to walk by faith not by Facts not by sight. ”  

I am not making Mr Jones the issue. He may have walked away from being a servant of Jehovah and as you said that is his right to do so. I apologies if I seemed to be judging him, I have no intention of judging any person. But,  Mr Jones does have an agenda, an ax to grind.  and that is made quite clear by his statement  “Jehovah's Witnesses have been in the prophesying business for over 100 years.“  

That statement tells a reader that Mr Jones has issues with JWs. Or maybe I should say the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society.  He seems to have been disillusioned by dates.  As I say on my profile page. “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.”  

The issue is why ask a non JW that sort of question.  I do not know of any opposer of JWs that does not think we have prophesied.

Now,  I have a habit, it seems , of making my replies very complicated. Did you understand what I said about  JWs not being false prophets.  

It is true what you said .. “Did any of the bible characters ever think 1975 as a year ? or 1914 or any other yr. NO” ... For one thing they would never have been able to do so because they did not have our dating system that most of the world use today. Also from Daniel 12:9 says “because the words are made secret and sealed up until the time of [the] end.” It would appear that those words are relevant to all “end times” (end of system) prophecies, even that one Jesus gave that had some fulfillment on Jerusalem  but also for our day.

You know Russell had wrong expressions for 1914, but from Bible prophecy he was able to pinpoint that year as significant.  1914 was not a new date either, it had been suggested well before Russell’s time.  The point is Bible prophecies  pointed to that year as being significant.  Our understanding of those prophecies is that was when Jesus ousted Satan from heaven and confined him to the earth.  The events from that year onward seem to justify that understanding and fit in with the composite sign of his presence – that is turning his attention to the earth to get mankind ready for the great fear-inspiring day of Jehovah.  There was nothing significant about 1975. It was not prophecy. It was an understanding of Chronology. All that was said was that it marked the end of 6000 years since Adam was created.  It was speculated (without any proof what so ever) as to how long after Adam, that Eve might have shown up. It was mistakenly (and arrogantly) suggested that might be a good time for something to happen. I can understand their enthusiasm to see Gods will done, but in hindsight they should never have suggested that 1975 or shortly after might be a good time for something to happen.  They were, after all, just following the advice "to keep on the watch" (Matthew 24:42, Matt 25:13, Mark 13:32-36 )

So, I will agree with you that at times there has been to much emphasis on dates.  However, even though I do not agree with all the talk in the past (and present talk of the 40 year idea), I have seen what it has done.  It has caused people to examine why they became JWs in the first place.  I have seen and read  interviews of many ex JWs.  A lot of them have been disillusioned by a date. What they expected to happen did not happen so they gave up.  That tells me that they did not have your fine attitude - “ God is there for the Good times & The Bad. He wants to see who we really are when things are not going your way” -

Those that have allowed themselves to be stumbled by a date were  wanting to serve God for selfish reasons – life, - salvation. We should be wanting to serve Jehovah because he is deserving of our service, to show our appreciation for the life we have NOW and not at some future time.

The most important topic of the Bible is not our salvation or the ransom of Jesus, it is the vindication of Gods Sovereignty .  Satan challenged Gods right to set boundaries (i.e. be our ruler). That did not just affect Adam and Eve and all mankind, that challenge was universal.  Many of Gods heavenly sons followed Satan into rebellion.  That is the whole point of Gods kingdom and the obligation of man - to  prove Satan a liar and that man will serve God because he wants to not because he has to. There can be no real peace until after the 1000 years when Satan is finally abolished.

I have been a JW since the 1960s and have seen many changes, many injustices, and many people come and go.  Us humans tend to look at things from our advantage.  That is not a very good place to see things from, it is crowded with imperfect men.  What we need to try to do is elevate our mental (and spiritual) eyes to a higher position and attempt to see things from Gods point of view.  The Bible helps us do. You are getting the right view point. I know this from what you said … “ I'm there to serve God. Yes, the org. lives by the bible but many are not doing what they are supposed to”...  Use Gods word and mature Christians to answer your questions.  If you do ask a non JW please get a balancing view point.  You know, even among JWs you will get different view points.  Jehovah has given us a tool to use, our conscience, and many JWs will answer according to their conscience.

Dee, when you decide to get baptised remember this, you are asking “God for a good conscience”   (1 Peter 3:21 ). In effect you are  signing a contract (making a covenant) with Jehovah (on the basses of the shed blood of Jesus) to do the best you can to serve him. Romans 6:4 says “Therefore we were buried with him through our baptism into his death, in order that, just as Christ was raised up from the dead through the glory of the Father, we also should likewise walk in a newness of life.”  Our objective is to walk in the way Jesus walked. His goal was to do the will of his Father (John 4:34 5:30 6:38,39 ) I was happy to read your sentiments - “Get our lives straight & try to live by Jehovah's standards...The best way we can”.

I am so pleased that you can see past imperfections.  Do not let the imperfections of men, or an organisation, stop you from serving the creator of the universe, the Father and God of Jesus our Lord and saviour, Jehovah.


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

QUESTION: Hi,
No worries. I'm glad to hear you don't have any hard feelings with Robert Jones. He is a honest & nice person. Maybe many witnesses don't like what he says, but now that I'm a part of the Society, I see things too. But I'm there to serve God not man. As the bible says, Man can't even direct his own steps. Using Bible chronology..It places events in their right order with the correct interval of years in between, but specific dates..as the young folks say..NOT.. I have spoken to a few friends in the hall & have gone through many trials with some of the other brothers & sisters of the congregation, even having the elders not resolve an issue,but what they always say...No matter Jehovah will take care of it if the elders won't. This is how I feel, I will never say never, but man doesn't mean to stumble you, but somehow they do. God doesn't add burdens he takes them away. The dates are burdensome & mind boggling, which makes the walk much more difficult and stressful. Stick to the real message of the bible..Preach & Teach others, that is the foundation. How many in life have predicted the end ? Dozens, we don't want to a part of that number, do we. Let's stick to the script, as Jesus commanded us to do, make disciples & get them baptized in the name of the Father, Son & Holy Spirit & then the end will come, no date mentioned. That is a witness job..not to speculate on when, just know it will happen & be ready. Just think if all these dates had never been speculated, it makes one think how many more would have stayed or come in. Let's stay out of the business of fortune telling & do the work that Jehovah gave us to do. Let's not run ahead of the scriptures. Let's not be like the Pharisees & add burdens & information on people, take a part from the old convenant & a part of the new one. Trust in Jehovah, have faith that his will, WILL BE DONE, no more no less. All humans are imperfect, I mean all in the hall & outside the hall, there is no where to go for perfection, at one time before man supposedly went to the mooon, that may have been a place without imperfection, but guess what ? We humans went up there too..so they say, so the moon is no longer perfect, because where there is man, so there is sin & imperfection. I could leave the hall & go to a Baptist church, Methodist, etc., let's just say they had the same doctrine we have don't you know they would have imperfect humans in there as well doing & saying things, that God didn't even say. Humans have many needs, the need to be right, the need to be smarter, the need for power. Jehovah Witnesses are suppoesd to be different. Yes, we may know the bible better/different from others, but we must not close or minds & ears to others & think we can not learn anything. How many illustrations are in the bible the God used people that folks would not think to look or listen to. Let's not be closed minded, let's really imitate Jesus & be mild mannered & approachable. Jesus never told anyone what day or time but that it will take place...so then, let us follow his example & do what he did...preach & teach & heal...no more understanding of when & where, but that it WILL HAPPEN. I like you last sentence...& I will live by that, because when I have to speak for myself while being judged, I can't say to Jehovah well the organization said this & God will say but did you read the bible & I'll say yes, then he'll say, what did I say..not what man said...I SAY...I read today's text...help me with this. Now in 1914, Jesus became in charge right & Satan tossed out of Heaven finally...right ?  OK, Eph. 6:12 because we have a wrestling, not against blood and flesh, but against the governments, against the authorities, against the world rulers of this darkness, against the wicked spirit forces in the heavenly places.  WICKED FORCES IN HEAVENLY PLACES...Are there still wicked forces in Heavenly places...Now when I read this I know to take in account when it was said, but it was in today's Daily Scritpures, so this pointing to today...there are no longer wicked forces in the heavens are they ?

Dee

ANSWER: Hi Dee,

Thank you for the follow up,

I agree with all you said.

Jws in their eagerness to see the end of this system  have assumed things that they should not. It has had the effect of weeding out those that are not here to serve our creator but look to imperfect man instead.

But to the original problem, be assured, NO   JWs have never been false prophets  in the sense of telling the future.  I hope you understand that. We have misunderstood PREVIOUSLY written prophecy and come to conclusions that are incorrect.  We have never been the false prophets mentioned in Deuteronomy 18:20-22  "20 “‘However, the prophet who presumes to speak in my name a word that I have not commanded him to speak or who speaks in the name of other gods, that prophet must die. 21 And in case you should say in your heart: “How shall we know the word that Jehovah has not spoken?” 22 when the prophet speaks in the name of Jehovah and the word does not occur or come true, that is the word that Jehovah did not speak. With presumptuousness the prophet spoke it. You must not get frightened at him.’


The type of prohet we try to be is the type recorded at  Deuteronomy 18: 15- 19 who try to promote true worship.  “15 A prophet from your own midst, from your brothers, like me, is what Jehovah your God will raise up for you—to him YOU people should listen— 16 in response to all that you asked of Jehovah your God in Ho′reb on the day of the congregation, saying, ‘Do not let me hear again the voice of Jehovah my God, and this great fire do not let me see anymore, that I may not die.’ 17 At that Jehovah said to me, ‘They have done well in speaking what they did. 18 A prophet I shall raise up for them from the midst of their brothers, like you; and I shall indeed put my words in his mouth, and he will certainly speak to them all that I shall command him. 19 And it must occur that the man who will not listen to my words that he will speak in my name, I shall myself require an account from him.”

When speaking of being a prophet we must get the correct usage of the word in context.

Take care

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

QUESTION: Hi Brenton
Prophet:A person regarded as an inspired teacher or proclaimer of the will of God: "the Old Testament prophet Jeremiah".one who foretells future events : predictor ...these definitions of what a prophet is. When God said he had sent various prophets & folks killed them & what were they saying that this was going to take place, that the Messiah was coming that he will be resurrected...The prophets were telling of things to come..am I correct ? & Didn't everything God's prophet told, didn't it come true ? That's why they killed the prophets because they were bringing news but not the kind of news that they wanted to hear. So, lets take a look at the Society...what have they told so far that has come to pass...The End is near, for sure, but when ? Again, nobody knows..God is the same yesterday, today & tomorrow..only humans change. God has been giving the same message since the beginning & only we change the message, because of our understanding. Example: A little boy in the hall learning about the scriptures pertaining to marriage. Now as a young child, he has no idea what those scriptures mean, only that his Mom & Pop are married. What does know about chosing a mate that is in the truth, all he wants to do is go home & play with his toys...as time moves on & he thinks about marriage those marriage scriptures take on a different meaning. Has the message changed no, but the person has, now he can apply it. The same thing from the Society, the message is the same it's one's interpretation...that's the danger of interpretation...it changes, but does God ? NO..& why is it that when someone even a witnesses see's a scripture different & it still lines up with the scriptures why can't we express it...Another example..Martha & Mary...once I heard it was to mean, that hospitality doesn't have to be that much, just a little tea & coffee, then another interpretation was that you can be too busy & miss the message...so only the society can tell YOU HOW & WHAT TO THINK...doesn't that sound a little like communism, or living in a house where you have no say. Witnesses are intelligent people so give those credit in the congregation that may see something different...You can interpret that same scripture to say, well, it's not that Martha was wrong it was her attitude re: Mary not helping...it wasn't wrong what she was doing but her motivation & her attitude..now what's wrong with that interpretation, doesn't it line up with what Jehovah expects of us ? Our motives our attitudes towards God, Jesus, our sisters & brothers, the world.  It all depends on your life's experiences. To tell people not to think but to only think what they are told...again, Communisim. Here's something to think about..sometimes it's better to be real than right. The organization is a great go to place...it's like Mother, & mom's have & can be wrong, doesn't mean you don't love her, but know she has her faults...how many things have our parents told us & we found out they were wrong. How many mothers, told their girls, if you kiss a boy, you'll get pregnant, why did they tell them that, for protection, but as the child grew older, found out that was not ture & made adjustments. What happens if the Society is banned or burned...what will we do where will we go...how many of our brothers & sisters have no bible cannot contact the Society, but keep walking in faith..God, is who we are to follow...Did Paul follow an org. Did David follow an org. ? The scriptures never took on new meanings to them...The society keeps folks so busy that you don't have time to think.  Some folks love to be told what to read, what to say, how to live, it's easy, no thinking & that's good for some but not for all...Some people think & they don't think outside God's word.
You say Witnesses have never fortold the future, Brenton, what are you saying...the world will end in 1914, 1975, now they are saying 2014...if they didn't say it who did ? Don't have so much pride that you can't admit being wrong & by you, I don't mean you...Even one of the WT said they had been wrong about the dates, but still had to have the last word, we were wrong ....BUT....Anybody can be wrong...that's why the put erasers on pencils..

Take Care,

Dee

Answer
Hello Dee

Thank you for writing again, I know this is long, but PLEASE read it all and not skip over it as you told Robert about one of my responses. You told him   “I read your reply re: Brenton reply to me... I didn't even read it too long..I loved your reply.. ”  http://en.allexperts.com/q/Jehovah-s-Witness-1617/2013/4/great-comment-reply.htm  It is not often that I can work out how to reply with few words and I know my long answer do annoy some people.

Before I start, may I please ask a favour from you?  When you have a lot to write, can you please put it into paragraphs.  Big blocks of writing can be very difficult for some people to read.

You give a nice definition of the word prophet
QUOTE
Prophet:A person regarded as an inspired teacher or proclaimer of the will of God: "the Old Testament prophet Jeremiah".one who foretells future events : predictor ...these definitions of what a prophet is. When God said he had sent various prophets & folks killed them & what were they saying that this was going to take place, that the Messiah was coming that he will be resurrected...The prophets were telling of things to come..am I correct ? & Didn't everything God's prophet told, didn't it come true ? That's why they killed the prophets because they were bringing news but not the kind of news that they wanted to hear.
End quote.

Yes Dee that is correct, but it is only ONE definition. In fact it is a very narrow definition according to the meaning of the Bible, but it is usually the one that most people understand.

The Hebrew word for prophet is “nabiy’” and  has the very broad meaning of “a spokesman“  The Greek word for prophet is “prophetes”.  This is a compound word made up of “pro” meaning “in front of” and “phemi” which means “to show or make known one’s thoughts, i.e. speak or say:”  or “one who speaks forth openly”

So Yes Jeremiah was a prophet. In what sense? He was “a spokesman” for Jehovah.  People like Jeremiah, Ezekiel, Jonah, Hezekiah, Isaiah etc. were all spokesmen for Jehovah.  They told the message that Jehovah gave them.  Jehovah is the foreteller of future events , those men just  “speaks forth openly”  the words of Jehovah.  They were inspired men.  Since the last of the Bible writers, John, died, NO person on earth has been inspired by God.

The prophets of old did not just tell of some future event – usually a calamity.  They reminded Gods people of their responsibility toward God, they promoted the worship acceptable to God.  Many people point to Deuteronomy 18 : 20 and say that the word prophet reefers to one that tells of the future and apply it to understandings that JWs have had over the years as false predictions worthy of death by Jehovah.  That is the understanding you have as per this statement--- “So, lets take a look at the Society...what have they told so far that has come to pass...”--- You are assuming that they are they type of prophet that foretell the future.  That is not correct.

Did you understand the way I illustrated Nostradamus? The people that have written their understandings of his works are not considered false prophets, because it was not their work, but understandings of the works of Nostradamus .

Read through the account in Deuteronomy 18 .  Mosses is prophetically foretelling, mainly the coming of the Messiah.  But also other prophets that would be raised up to guide the people to set them straight.  Mosses was not know as a prophet in the league of say Daniel,  Jeremiah, Isaiah etc.  Once he had been used to deliver the people out of Egypt his main roll was one of promoting true worship .

“With Moses, the role of the prophet comes into sharper focus. The prophet’s position as spokesman for God is emphasized by Jehovah’s assignment of Aaron as a “prophet” or “mouth” to Moses, while Moses ‘served as God to Aaron.’ (Ex 4:16; 7:1, 2) Moses foretold many events that saw early fulfillment, such as the Ten Plagues. However, he served even more impressively as prophet, or spokesman for God , in the delivering of the Law covenant at Sinai and in instructing the nation in God’s will ” *** it-2 p. 695 Prophet ***

That is the sense of the word prophet  that is used by JWs.  Promoting true worship.

With the expanded, full meaning of the word “prophet” as used in the Bible, did you know that every time you talk to someone about Gods Kingdom you are being a prophet.  Every time you read a text to someone, you are being a prophet. How? In the sense of being a spokes person for God.  You are speaking on his behalf. Promoting true worship. When any of us do that, we become prophets in the Biblical sense.

I like your illustration of the boy growing up and his understanding of the married changes as his perception changes. There is something I read long ago along those lines. It goes something like this “Truth never changes – man’s perception of truth does”

Once it was thought that the earth was flat.  That is man’s perception. It was even a heresy by the established church to think otherwise. “Pope Urban Vlll  tried Galileo by the Inquisition, found "vehemently suspect of heresy", forced to recant “

When I went to school there was I think 98 elements on the periodic table, now there is 118 on that table. (The last 20 have been synthesized)

If you needed an open heart operation, would you be confident to use a doctor that  used the absolute best procedures and practices from 1960 or would you want a doctor that has built on what has been known and uses the best practice from now .? As we learn we can build on previous knowledge

Yes the Bibles truths do not change. They are the same. How does one progress in spiritual knowledge? Do you build on what you already know or be content with everything staying the same?

JWs have been in the forefront of progressing. It is one of the things that tells me that JWs are doing the right thing.    Here is something I have just written to a private questioned

First there is no one or two passage in the Bible that can out-rightly give you a direct answer on those two questions  There are some things to keep in mind. Philippians 1:9 This tells us that Christians NEED to continue to grow in knowledge and discernment or as the KJV says “that your love may abound yet more and more in knowledge and in all judgment;” The Darby Bible says “ full knowledge and all intelligence,”.

The Greek word rendered as “discernmentt” - NWT ; “judgment” -KJV and “intelligence” is “aisthesis” which means - “perception, not only by the senses but by the INTELLECT, COGNITION, DISCERNMENT of moral discernment in ethical matters”  (Capitals mine)

It is by a careful study peering into Gods word we are able perceive, discern the deep things of God that are not readily discernibile to those that do not see things as God sees them (James 1:25, 1 Corinthian 2:10 )

What has that got to do with the point at hand? We keep looking deep into the Bible in order to keep awake spiritually as to the times we live in. (see Mark 13:32-37; Luke 21:34:35 ) Rutherford once said after an understanding he had that was way of beam something like (I made a real ass of my self) He had completely miss interpreted the pattern of the jubilees, he thought they had prophetic meaning.

How do we know are are living deep in the time of the end of this system? By the signs that Jesus gave.  How many religions accept those signs as relating to our day? There are a few. How many of them believe that it points to a literal physical return of Jesus?.. Many...    If we were like the religions that see that we are living in the tie of the end and we are caught out , what a heavy responsibility the leaders have to carry before God for not warning.

The brothers that take on the responsibility of being the “shepherds” of all of God's people carry a heavy load to keep the flock awake and ready.

Imagine being in a real war.  Centuries are posted. There is the  threat of attack.  They do not know when, but they now the enemy is right there.  Maybe I watched to many movies  growing up.  The centuries were looking for any signs of the attack, shadows in the bushes.  The job of the century was to let people know what hey saw. This keeps every one alert as to which side an attack may come from.

That is what the WTS has done.  They have the signs to look for. Sometimes they misread the signs. All in all they keep telling what the see.  - to keep us spiritually awake

You ask

“...why is it that when someone even a witnesses see's a scripture different & it still lines up with the scriptures why can't we express it..”

I know in my congregation that has been known to happen. In a meeting part some one will give there understanding of a text.  It is never done as if they are right and the WTS is wrong.  Thy have voiced their understanding in such a way that does not undermine the confidence of others.

You ask about Mar and Martha

“....once I heard it was to mean, that hospitality doesn't have to be that much, just a little tea & coffee, then another interpretation was that you can be too busy & miss the message....”

Neither explanation is wrong. They are both correct. They are not “interpretation” as such , but principles or lessons that can drawn form the account.  Both ideas you mention are taught by the way those two woman reacted to Jesus being there with them 1) It was not wrong to have something to eat, but a big meal was not necessary . 2) Jesus showed the importance of spiritual (food) knowledge  by not wanting to miss the information being presented.

Neither one was a rule . They are just principles that a mature Christian should take to heart, and not commands.  You demonstrated that yesterday in  the example of that couple that took many years for their conscience to finally tell them that they were making too of of this world.  

The WTS is not telling us what to think. They are just pointing out principles that is up to us to decide what to do.  If a person puts on an elaborate meal for some friends, that is not a crime against God. If a person put s on a meager meal, it will not give one points with God.  Attitude is what counts.  Why are we putting on a fancy meal? Is it show how good a cook we are or how affluent we are?  If we put on a small meal is to to try to look pious “ Look I am doing what Jesus said we should do aren't I good”

The WTS does not tell us what to do.  We are free moral agents.  A Christian who is always conscious of Christian responsibility, you just will not find, not even in any of the Governing Body. Recently we had a zone visit here in Australia, and we had an Australia wide video link up to all areas that could do that. A GB member gave a talk and reminded us of the need to do daily Bible reading. That is nearly a command in the Bible is it not (Joshua 1:8 .”This book of the law should not depart from your mouth, and you must in an undertone read in it day and night, in order that you may take care to do according to all that is written in it.”  He asked how we were all going with that. Do you miss some times,” I do”  he said. They are just as imperfect as we are. He is supposed to be one of the anointed yet he occasional fails to obey that command “you must .

No they do not tell us what to do or what to think. They just keep trying to remind them selves, and us, of the principles in the Bible. Here is why ”for they are keeping watch over YOUR souls as those who will render an account .” (Hebrews 13:17 )  Yes they have the heaviest accountability of any one on earth. If they mess up they are held accountable.

Being a JW is not about obeying rules and regulations. The only rules we have are what are clearly spelled out in the Bible – do not worship other gods - do not murder - commit adultery – steel – lie – become enslaved to alcohol – etc.

So many other things are principles, and up to our conscience. We just had our Special Assembly Day meeting and the whole program was about our consciences and how it varies between each one of us, to be aware that, each one of us has a different degree conscience and to take that into account of each persons actions.  

Finally for this time around you say
Quote
You say Witnesses have never fortold the future, Brenton, what are you saying...the world will end in 1914, 1975, now they are saying 2014...if they didn't say it who did ?
End quote

The WTS never said the world would end in 1914 or 1975. It is opposer’s that have said that by giving poor quotes from Watchtower magazines.

Russell's understanding was  that 1914 was the end of the Gentile times followed by the establishment of Gods Kingdom on earth, NOT that the end of the world.  You will see that from some quotes from 3 of his sermons.  

“The "seven times" of punishment (a "time" ...beginning with the overturning of the kingdom, 606 B.C., when Zedekiah, their last king, was dethroned by Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, would have their ending about October, 1914, A.D. During all of these 2, 520 years the Jewish race, with their country and capital city, Jerusalem, have been under Gentile dominion, trodden down and oppressed. The Lord Jesus referred to this when He said, "Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled."--Luke 21:24”

“and this would bring us to the year 1914, as the time when God's favor for His people will be gradually manifested, during the closing hours of Gentile supremacy in the close”

“dispensation--until the overthrow of the professedly Christian kingdoms, really "kingdoms of this world," and the full establishment of the Kingdom of God in the earth after 1914, the terminus of the Times of the Gentiles.”

Bible Chronology, (by on large was not his but was he took on ad ran with) is what brought him to 1914.  Since his day with further peering into the deep things of God and searching as of looking for hidden treasures 1914 still is seen as the end of the gentile times. Russell understood from Adventist groups that the time of the end started in 1799. Our adjusted understanding is the the time of the end started at the end of the Gentile times.  

1975 was never the prediction of the end of the world. Note what was published in the October 15 Watchtower 1966 page 631  Please note what I have in bold. And underlined (italic  and [ ] original)

QUOTE
At the Baltimore assembly Brother Franz in his closing remarks made some interesting comments regarding the year 1975. He began casually by saying, “Just before I got on the platform a young man came to me and said, ‘Say, what does this 1975 mean? Does it mean this, that or any other thing?’” In part, Brother Franz went on to say: ‘You have noticed the chart [on pages 31-35 in the book Life Everlasting in Freedom of the Sons of God ]. It shows that 6,000 years of human experience will end in 1975, about nine years from now. What does that mean? Does it mean that God’s rest day began 4026 B.C.E.? It could have. The Life Everlasting book does not say it did not . The book merely presents the chronology. You can accept it or reject it . If that is the case, what does that mean to us? [He went into some length showing the feasibility of the 4026 B.C.E. date as being the beginning of God’s rest day.]

‘What about the year 1975? What is it going to mean, dear friends?’ asked Brother Franz. ‘Does it mean that Armageddon is going to be finished, with Satan bound, by 1975? It could! It could! All things are possible with God. Does it mean that Babylon the Great is going to go down by 1975? It could. Does it mean that the attack of Gog of Magog is going to be made on Jehovah’s witnesses to wipe them out, then Gog himself will be put out of action? It could. But we are not saying. All things are possible with God. But we are not saying. And don’t any of you be specific in saying anything that is going to happen between now and 1975 . But the big point of it all is this, dear friends: Time is short. Time is running out, no question about that.
End quotes

All that was said was that chronology seemed to indicate that 1975 would be the end of 6000 years of mans existence.  Some took his words of “it could” in reloy to the speculation as to if anything will happen to mean “it will”. All he was doing was keeping on the watch looking for signs in the shadows of an attack. He was cautious as to what he said. And he warned “ don’t any of you be specific in saying anything that is going to happen between now and 1975”

I speak about 2014 in a reply to Robert today that should show up tomorrow.

So Dee it was not JWs as a group that said  we taught the world would end. Most of it came from disgruntled JWs that were only serving God out of fear of dying and not love, were disappointed and fell,  They  fell asleep spiritually. And people that never were JWs that partially read what was published.

Many opposer’s quote an old KM from the early 1970 that said something like  “we have had reports of brothers selling their homes and moving to where the need is  greater. What a great way to spend these last days” (or words very similar).  Witness have never stopped doing that. In the congregation where I am we have had several couples sell up and move.  One family with 3 young children has gone to Italy to serve in an English speaking congregation made up of refugees whose second language is English. They have more studies that they can handle.  An other couple sold up and went to Myanmar (formally Burma) and have learnt the language while there.

You see Dee often people get only a small piece of information and to to explain what they think it is.  Have you ever had a jigsaw piece that could fit in several places? You could give an opinion on where to put it and it looks good. Then as you continue putting it together why the piece does not go there it looks better over there.  That relates to things we hear about JWs.   And the truth

The truth never changes but as we slowly put the pieces together what we thought belonged in one place, why it may not and will have to be moved or discarded.

Some stories about JW mistakes may well be true BUT more often than not they may well be pieces out of place.

How difficult is it to put a complicated jigsaw together without a picture a reference.  When ever we have small pieces of information we need to to determine the big picture.

Many times I have fallen into the trap of only looking at one or two pieces. We all do, even the GB. He hard part for us humans is to look at things from Jehovah's eyes. As imperfect people we can never fully get that view, but we can certainly try and it gives us a better perspective of what we see.

Keep asking question, but do so of the right people.  

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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 . . . . .

Experience

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.

Education/Credentials
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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