Jehovah`s Witness/How do people find TTATT
In your ministry with Jehovah's Witnesses, what have you found helps them to learn the truth about "the truth"? Do you recommend that they stop being Jehovah's Witnesses or should they stay in? How have they reacted spiritually?
Greetings, and thanks for your questions! Since you used the term "The Truth About The Truth" and "TTATT", I sense that you have already done some research in this area. Perhaps you are looking for some magic bullet answer. Unfortunately, there is not one. The Bible says to "test all things" (1 Thes. 5:21), but the Watchtower only allows their followers to use WT literature to find the answers.
I find this particular statement funny..."But, strangely, through such ‘Bible reading,’ they have reverted right back to the apostate doctrines that commentaries by Christendom’s clergy were teaching 100 years ago…"—The Watchtower, August 15, 1981, pp. 28-29. This is funny to me because, according to the WT, if you just simply read the Bible without the aid of their literature, you come up with the same conclusions that Christendom did. So, I encourage JW's to read the Bible for themselves without commentary or study aid. I particularly like the books of John (Christ's deity) and Romans (salvation by grace) for JW's.
Few JW's realize they have been lied to due to doctrinal discussions. The WT has interpreted scripture for them and indoctrinated them to believe that certain scriptures mean certain things. Frankly, they can be educated in that regard, but belief will most likely come from the power of the Holy Spirit working in them. That said, some do come around to learn TTATT through logical reasoning.
However, most stories usually start with one small thing that doesn't line up well in their mind. Questions on biblical interpretation, disfellowshipping and shunning policies, 607 vs. 586/587, blood policies, the generation overlap, etc. Something confuses them and puts a small crack in that seemingly bulletproof glass. This is where the fear of apostate literature sets in. At this point, they can either choose to follow their instinct and see why something seems wrong or they can stuff it inside. Since most are too afraid to even consider that the WT could possibly be wrong, they will stuff it inside. Some are willing to at least investigate their questions even if it means looking at both sides.
There are certain books that I highly recommend. Crisis of Conscience by Raymond Franz is particularly good as it details the organization from the perspective of a Governing Body member. The WT hates this book and will defame it forever, but few read it and walk away with any illusion of their organization. He also wrote In Search of Christian Freedom. More great reads for them is Captives of a Concept by Don Cameron and Combating Cult Mind Control by Steven Hassan. By the way, Hassan wasn't writing about Jehovah's Witnesses, but the parallels can't be ignored.
There are a few websites that I would recommend as they are very powerful. Since many of them contain forums with people who would rather remain nameless, I will not advertise those. However, one of the best out there is jwfacts.com which simply and fairly compares and contrasts Watchtower literature. It's nearly impossible to argue with things on this site and can be an eye-opener for a JW.
As far as what I recommend...I recommend Jesus Christ. There are many within the organization who have come to know Christ and removed the emotional chains of the WT. They remain in for a variety of reasons. Let's face it, they know what will happen when/if they leave. They will be shunned by everyone who is important to them, including their own family. It's difficult. Regardless of what their choice is, if they have accepted Christ, I have no concern in which organization they belong.
JW's are told that if they leave the organization, they are "leaving Jehovah". Again, a fear tactic. The organization is not Jehovah, and there are many who remain loyal to Jehovah while realizing that the organization has no hold on them. Of course, there are some who choose to go a different route and "throw the baby out with the bath water". This is unfortunate as many things that JW's teach are true and appropriate and they completely rebel against the organization as a whole. The spiritual variety of ex-JW's is easily seen on different forums online. Some contain a mostly atheist/agnostic feel, while others explore real Bible study. There is a place for anyone who is willing to investigate further.
Please feel free to follow up if you have any more questions,