Jehovah`s Witness/Follow up on your final answer

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QUESTION: Hello Carol...  I want to express my heartfelt appreciation for your responses to my questions about WT teachings.  I listened to a presentation from a young man that claimed he had been a member in the years of 1968' 1975 etc.  he even claimed to be an elder for many years and then told us why he left.  He said that the WT 4/15/72 definitely says that Jehovah has a prophet (JW's) and that Jehovah has put His words in their mouths. Then he showed us actual magazines from the WT, that said, to prove that JW's are truly prove that JW's are true prophets, all a person has to do is examine the WT's record.  He proceeded to show us since the very beginning, from a Mr. CT Russell, there has never been a prophetic utterance that has come true.  Dates such as 1874, 1914, 1915, 1925, 1941 and 1975.  He showed that the WT, the writers, the ones who supposedly receive the information which ends up on the pages of the Watchtower's literature even encouraged young people not to take good jobs, not to further, not to have children and selling their homes were fine things to do because of the short time remaing before Arageddon which was to come before 1975,  he also showed the July 15, 2013 Watchtower has changed it's belief AGAIN on who the "Faithful and Discreet Slave is, that those who were alive and at an age of understanding (at that time the age was 15) would be alive when Armageddon came.  99% of those people are DEAD.  He said the WT'S light is not getting brighter...it has continually gone out and is always being revised.  Was he correct.ct about all of this?  He also said that when talking with Jehovah's Witnesses, they will quote hebrew and Greek words, but the likelihood of that person being able to read one sentence in the New Testament in Greek....is slim.  Are the statements true?  He said that if a person wanted to show a Jehovah's Witness the quote that the JW will not even look at it...even from their own literature.  Is that really true?

I am searching for the truth of the Bible.

I hope that you will answer the questions that cause me real problems with the WT/Jehovah's Witnesses.  If they are true I have a problem.

Thank you Jim

ANSWER: Jim,
It is my pleasure to answer these questions for you. May I ask, where was such a presentation given? I found that interesting. I will cover these questions first (you have a lot there and it would be too much for one answer) But, I will answer anything that you have brought up if I have not touched on it in a follow-up. Let’s take these first few steps.

The brothers preparing the Watchtower publications are not infallible. Their writings are not inspired as are those of Paul and the other Bible writers. (2 Tim. 3:16) And so, at times, it has been necessary, as understanding became clearer, to correct views. (Prov. 4:18) However, this has resulted in a continual refining of the body of Bible-based truth to which Jehovah’s Witnesses subscribe. Over the years, as adjustments have been made to that body of truth, it has become more  applicable to our lives in these “last days.” Bible commentators of Christendom are not inspired either. Despite their claims to great knowledge, they have failed to highlight even basic Bible truths—such as the coming Paradise earth, the importance of God’s name, and the condition of the dead.The prophet Daniel was given a preview of events to occur in the distant future. Thereafter he was told: “And as for you, O Daniel, make secret the words and seal up the book, until the time of the end. Many will rove about, and the true knowledge will become abundant.” –Da 12:4. We do see the light getting brighter and brighter all the time as we come closer to the end. That is how it is suppose to be. Even people we speak to at the doors are feeling a difference in this world and realizing that something is happening. This is bringing more people to wanting to learn about Jehovah. I will consider two of the dates you brought out.

1914
The Bible Students knew from prophecy that Jesus would take over as King in the heavens. They were upset that they were not raptured to heaven at that time! Does that make their faith wrong? No. It was what they could understand at that time.
A baby must start with milk and work its way to solid food (Heb 5:13,14)…in the same way, beliefs cannot just be thrust in one lump, it is too much to digest. Just as the disciples thought Jesus was going to be King on earth, even though he kept trying to explain to them that was not what he was there to do,they could not understand because that is what the Jews believed the Messiah was going to do. They believed the Messiah was going to be King on earth and that he would end the unjustness at that time. But, that was not his calling. That is why so many turned away from his teachings. That did not make Chrisitianity wrong? No,it just showed our imperfection as humans.
It is so strange how some view things. You asked about the new information on the Faithful and Discreet Slave. Yes, this was new information brought out, but rather discourage and cause doubt, I found it exciting to be part of a new understanding. And it made sense!
As far not being willing to look at our own literature someone wants to show us and discuss…no offense intended, but that’s ludicrous! I, nor any of the friends, ever hesitate to go over some article or publication by us that someone wanted share with us. I don’t know anyone in the congregations that would turn away an opportunity of that kind. We go out to find people that are willing to speak with us- not argue- we will not argue- but we will discuss anything with anyone, anytime, willingly! We spend hours in the field looking for such ones!!

You commented on the Hebrew and Greek terms that we often quote. Most scholars that quote the Hebrew and Greek do not speak the language; they are rather, just that…scholars. My brother, for example, was not one of Jehovah’s Witnesses, but he was a minister with the Church of God. He could not speak Hebrew or Greek, yet had a very nice, scholarly, command of the meanings of different words. If I could, I would like to relate a personal story. When I was first studying, and for the next 20 yrs, there was a family that literally lived a block from me that was from Greece. They read the Greek Bible along with their English copy.  They made their children speak Greek, when in their home, to each other. They certainly could read the Greek! In fact, whenever there was a Watchtower study article or a part during a meeting where they needed to know the proper pronunciation or meaning, they always called on them.  Also, we have in our library a Greek Diaglott, which was not published by us, that is the Greek Scriptures (all in Greek) but under each Greek work is the English translation of that word. The truth can be found, there is no doubt of that.

“Prophesying.” Prophesying was a greater gift than speaking in tongues, as it built up the congregation. Moreover, unbelievers were helped thereby to recognize that God was really among the Christians. (1Co 14:3-5, 24, 25) All in the Christian congregation spoke about the fulfillment of the prophecies recorded in God’s Word. (Ac 2:17, 18) However, the particular ones having the miraculous gift of prophesying were able to foretell future events, as did Agabus.—Ac 11:27, 28

Prophets: (this is a quote from one of our articles)
Jehovah’s prophets were privileged to proclaim his message publicly. The Hebrew term for “prophet” (na•viʼ′),  its use in the Bible indicates that true prophets were spokesmen for Jehovah, men of God with inspired messages. The Greek word rendered “prophet” (pro•phe′tes) literally means “a speaker out,” to say something “in front of” or “before” someone. A prophet is one who proclaims messages attributed to a divine source. Often, but not always, God’s true prophets predicted future events.
Regarding the striking role of the prophets in God’s arrangement, M’Clintock and Strong’s Cyclopædia states: “Sometimes their advice was asked . . . But much more frequently they felt themselves inwardly moved to address the people without their advice having been asked, and they were not afraid to stand forward in places where their appearance, perhaps, produced indignation and terror.” (Volume VIII,  page 640)

1975:

I want to preface this with again a personal account. I was studying at the time of 1975 and it was never told to me that Armageddon was coming.  They knew it was the end of the 6000 yrs and it meant something but they were not sure. I called a good friend who at the time, she and her husband were full time workers in the service, and asked her how she personally took the information. She said that they felt that Armageddon could come during that period but they also new that it didn’t necessarily mean it was coming. You have to remember, we are never to serve Jehovah with a date. You don’t say, “Well, I will serve Him for 20 yrs, but if it hasn’t come by then, I’m quitting!” And your friend was right in some regard, many held off having children, marrying, did sell their belongings…but those at that time that were not serving with a date in view, interestingly have stayed faithful and just saw the advantages to what they did. The ones serving only with a date in view are the ones that lost faith. I myself believed I would never see my oldest child graduate, but I now have 4 very grown children and  7 grandchildren now!! I have served faithfully because I know this is the truth of the Bible and like Peter said to Jesus…”Where would I go?”

The following are 2 articles that will show you what was said:

“The Witnesses had long shared the belief that the Thousand Year Reign of Christ would follow after 6,000 years of human history. But when would 6,000 years of human existence end? The book Life Everlasting—In Freedom of the Sons of God, released at a series of district conventions held in 1966, pointed to 1975. Right at the convention, as the brothers examined the contents, the new book triggered much discussion about 1975.
At the convention held in Baltimore, Maryland, F. W. Franz gave the concluding talk. He began by saying: “Just before I got on the platform a young man came to me and said, ‘Say, what does this 1975 mean?’” Brother Franz then referred to the many questions that had arisen as to whether the material in the new book meant that by 1975 Armageddon would be finished, and Satan would be bound. He stated, in essence: ‘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.’
In the years following 1966, many of Jehovah’s Witnesses acted in harmony with the spirit of that counsel. However, other statements were published on this subject, and some were likely more definite than advisable. This was acknowledged in The Watchtower of March 15, 1980 (page 17). But Jehovah’s Witnesses were also cautioned to concentrate mainly on doing Jehovah’s will and not to be swept up by dates and expectations of an early salvation.
We made the choice in a dedication to God and symbolized it by baptism. But every day we are all faced with problems that require us to make lesser decisions and choices in harmony with that first big decision. Can we continue daily to make the right choices that keep us on the way to life? Can we be sure that we will actually realize the fullness of our hope in time?”

(From above pp)

March 15, 1980

Hold to Your Choice!
4 If we remain faithful, God will not let us make ruinous mistakes. But sometimes he permits us to be in error so that we may see our need to look always to him and his Word. This strengthens our relationship with him and our endurance while waiting. We learn from our mistakes that it is necessary to be more careful in the future. The desire for the new system of things to take complete charge of the earth has always been very strong in Christians down through the centuries. And because of their own short life-span, they doubtless longed for it to come in their particular lifetime. Those who have tried to keep God’s judgment time “close in mind” have, on more than one occasion throughout history, become overly eager for that day’s arrival, in their own minds trying to rush the arrival of the desired events. (2 Pet. 3:12) In the first century, for example, the apostle Paul found it necessary to write to Christians in Thessalonica in this fashion, as we read at 2 Thessalonians 2:1-3: “However, brothers, respecting the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ and our being gathered together to him, we request of you not to be quickly shaken from your reason nor to be excited either through an inspired expression or through a verbal message or through a letter as though from us, to the effect that the day of Jehovah is here. Let no one seduce you in any manner, because it will not come unless the apostasy comes first and the man of lawlessness gets revealed, the son of destruction.”
5 In modern times such eagerness, commendable in itself, has led to attempts at setting dates for the desired liberation from the suffering and troubles that are the lot of persons throughout the earth. With the appearance of the book Life Everlasting—in Freedom of the Sons of God, and its comments as to how appropriate it would be for the millennial reign of Christ to parallel the seventh millennium of man’s existence, considerable expectation was aroused regarding the year 1975. There were statements made then, and thereafter, stressing that this was only a possibility. Unfortunately, however, along with such cautionary information, there were other statements published that implied that such realization of hopes by that year was more of a probability than a mere possibility. It is to be regretted that these latter statements apparently overshadowed the cautionary ones and contributed to a buildup of the expectation already initiated.
6 In its issue of July 15, 1976, The Watchtower, commenting on the inadvisability of setting our sights on a certain date, stated: “If anyone has been disappointed through not following this line of thought, he should now concentrate on adjusting his viewpoint, seeing that it was not the word of God that failed or deceived him and brought disappointment, but that his own understanding was based on wrong premises.” In saying “anyone,” The Watchtower included all disappointed ones of Jehovah’s Witnesses, hence including persons having to do with the publication of the information that contributed to the buildup of hopes centered on that date.


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

QUESTION: Carol, thank you again.  I have physically seen, read and heard I.e., 4/15/72 WT "So,does Jehovah have a Prophet?  The WT's answer is "yes".  Their definition in that article of a prophet is, "one who declares things to come..."  In the Awake magazine (1968 I believe) they said  "there have been those in times past that have predicted an end to the world even announcing specific dates...the WT then calls those people "false prophets" because their prophecies did not come to pass.. They go on to state...but we have all the evidence and it is overwhelming.  It's easy to say that one is a prophet but ...WHAT does the record show?  I believe there was a specific date ...Sept. 5, 1975...check it out I think you find that what I heard is true.

Carol the record shows that The Watchtower has not gotten one end of the world prediction right.  And the claim in writing is that  "Jehovah put His words in their mouths" ( the faithful and discreet Slave), the ones responsible for feeding Jehovah's people meat in due season?  I heard a speaker, Mr Senuto deliver a WT prepared talk given at a district or Circuit Assembly of Jehovah's Witnesses where he said "the society knows what is coming and it's coming fast and don't wait, the door will be closed before then...STAY ALIVE until 75". Under Rutherford, he had a mansion built in San Diego called Beth Sarim because it was to house the faithful prophets of old... They were all to be resurrected and living in California by 1925.

In a paper printed by the Watchtower which was used in the Ministry School, the WT encouraged JW's not to go to college, not to take fine paying jobs, not to have have children until after Armageddon and all of these statements supposedly are given by Jehovah to His angels and the angels covey it to the writing staff in Brooklyn New York. That is the factual claim.  

I understand that the 1914 date (originally the END of the world), has been extended for possibly many years.  Originally "those who saw the beginning and were at an age of understanding (...15 years old at that time) would see the end...thus the date 1975.  Carol, 99% if not all of those people are dead.  Did Jehovah change His mind, or were all of these predictions just imperfect men's guesses.  The Watchtower calls others who predict the end of the world and it doesn't come true....false prophets.   Wouldn't that apply also to the WT.

That which was the truth, right out of Jehovah's mouth that was supposedly directly communicated by angels to the writing staff in New York, in 1874, 1914, 1919, 1925, 1941 and 1975...which one of those dates are still taught as the truth from Jehovah's mouth.  In my study, my Bible says "Jehovah changes not".

If those dates were claimed to be "The Truth" then and are no longer taught as "The Truth" today.. then has the candle gotten brighter or has not one candle simply gone out and been replaced by another truth.

My sincere question is what is a Jehovah's Witnesses to believe today knowing that the "slave" is not what older JW's have been taught for years.  Didn't the July 15, 2013 Watchtower state there was "new light" on who the "slave" is today?

Thank

Jim

Jim

ANSWER: 1)In that sense we are prophets, we declare things that we can tell from Bible prophecy and chronology what is happening, but this sentence appeared in EVERY issue of the Watchtower up to the mid- 70's:"No, THE WATCHTOWER IS NO INSPIRED PROPHET, but it follows and explains a Book of prophecy..."
The Bible shows that Jehovah enables his servants to understand his purpose in a progressive manner. (Prov. 4:18; John 16:12) Thus, the prophets who were divinely inspired to write portions of the Bible did not understand the meaning of everything that they wrote. (Dan. 12:8, 9; 1 Pet. 1:10-12) The apostles of Jesus Christ realized that there was much they did not understand in their time. (Acts 1:6, 7; 1 Cor. 13:9-12) The Bible shows that there would be a great increase in knowledge of the truth during “the time of the end.” (Dan. 12:4) Increased knowledge often requires adjustments in one’s thinking. Jehovah’s Witnesses are willing humbly to make such adjustments. There are many teachings they held to."  It took time to understand the erroneous teachings of ...rapture, Christmas,  use of the cross in many of the publications. These were teachings that would be refined as their studies and understanding progressed. The difference with us is we admit when we were wrong, just as the disciples did, and change our understanding. When I find the article I was reading (I can't remember where it was, I will send you the info contained in it)


2)This was actually interesting to research. I remembered slightly something about this because we have the book "Jehovah's Witnesses, Proclaimers of God's Kingdom" there is a section in this book on this. Yes, he believed that there may have been some proof that faithful "men of old would be resurrected by the Lord, be back on earth, and take charge of the visible affiars of earth. When I find that article again I will share with you what was said at that time...I have to find it again.

3)Yes, not just then did we discourage higher education but today also. We have dedicated our lives to Jehovah knowing that this system is dying and our reason for being here is to praise Jehovah and give him whole-souled devotion. We encourage all to do as much as they can in the ministry in order to help others come to an understanding of Bible teachings. 1John 2:15-17
>

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

QUESTION: Carol, my real problem is that even though Paul told those who were ALREADY CHRISTIANS to "make sure of ALL THINGS, I have personally read the WT where it says that a JW should not be checking thing out in the WT literature once they are baptized -  to make sure of all things even though the WT claims to be a "prophet of Jehovah and that what is said in the WT publications comes from Jehovah thru angels down to the writing staff in Brooklyn - that Jehovah puts His words in their mouth".  Paul said to those who were already Christians "make sure of ALL THINGS" - WT says, " don't question us."

And since CT Russell, Judge Rutherford, F. Franz etc., they all have been wrong and have even disagreed with each other.  The WT under Rutherford had a mansion built in Sandiego California to house David, and all of the faithful men of old as they were supposed to be resurrected and back on earth by the 1925.  My problem is that even though it can be proven that all of these false teaching can be seen by anyone who is honestly seeking the truth, many JWs say, "we never said that".  Yes they did and even though it can be proven from the WTs own literature, Jaws refuse to look at it or acknowledge it.   

So Carol, if Jehovah speaks thru the WT as is claimed, then Jehovah has caused His people to believe falsehoods or lies.  You and I know that Jehovah would not lead His people with lies.  The second conclusion would be that ever since 1874, Charles Taze Russell didn't hear the right messages or they were simply an imperfect mans opinions and many families suffered as a result of believing numerous fals prophesies .

I am searching for the truth and with if not most of the former truths being discarded and replaced with new and different "truth", I fail to see what your "truth" is today.  The truth does not change and if it does then the former truth was not truth at all.

Did you know that Rutherford built a mansion for David, Abraham, Jacob etc. for them to live in in 1925?

Jim

Answer

         claims to be a "prophet


***From one of our publications: Jehovah’s Witnesses do not claim to be inspired prophets. They have made mistakes. Like the apostles of Jesus Christ, they have at times had some wrong expectations.—Luke 19:11; Acts 1:6.


The Scriptures provide time elements related to Christ’s presence, and Jehovah’s Witnesses have studied these with keen interest. (Luke 21:24; Dan. 4:10-17) Jesus also described a many-featured sign that would tie in with the fulfillment of time prophecies to identify the generation that would live to see the end of Satan’s wicked system of things. (Luke 21:7-36) Jehovah’s Witnesses have pointed to evidence in fulfillment of this sign. It is true that the Witnesses have made mistakes in their understanding of what would occur at the end of certain time periods, but they have not made the mistake of losing faith or ceasing to be watchful as to fulfillment of Jehovah’s purposes. They have continued to keep to the fore in their thinking the counsel given by Jesus: “Keep on the watch, therefore, because you do not know on what day your Lord is coming.”—Matt. 24:42.


Matters on which corrections of viewpoint have been needed have been relatively minor when compared with the vital Bible truths that they have discerned and publicized. Among these are the following: Jehovah is the only true God. Jesus Christ is not part of a Trinitarian godhead but is the only-begotten Son of God. Redemption from sin is possible only through faith in Christ’s ransom sacrifice. The holy spirit is not a person but is Jehovah’s active force, and its fruitage must be evident in the lives of true worshipers. The human soul is not immortal, as the ancient pagans claimed; it dies, and the hope for future life is in the resurrection. God’s permission of wickedness has been because of the issue of universal sovereignty. God’s Kingdom is the only hope for mankind. Since 1914 we have been living in the last days of the global wicked system of things. Only 144,000 faithful Christians will be kings and priests with Christ in heaven, whereas the rest of obedient mankind will receive eternal life on a paradise earth.


Another factor to consider regarding the teachings of Jehovah’s Witnesses is this: Have these truly uplifted people morally? Are those who adhere to these teachings outstanding in their communities because of their honesty? Is their family life beneficially influenced by applying these teachings? Jesus said that his disciples would be readily identified because of having love among themselves. (John 13:35) Is this quality outstanding among Jehovah’s Witnesses? We let the facts speak for themselves.***


  Paul said to those who were already Christians "make sure of ALL THINGS" - WT says, " don't question us."

***It isn't that we follow in blind faith as you are making it sound. What you have to understand is that we all study the scriptures before accepting this religion and found that it was based on truth. It showed me the falsehoods, from scripture, the churches and other religions were teaching. I had my faith and trust built at that time and have never had a reason to doubt it. We tell our children when asked by a teacher or friend  why they don't celebrate Christmas or salute the flag to never just say because I am one of Jehovah's Witnesses, but instead instill in them the foundations of Bible reasoning so that as they mature in the truth they will have a solid foundation of the true fundamentals of scripture. And speaking for myself, I have had times when I had to really delve into what was being said to have a good understanding and have at times had to be patient to understand and accept some things said. But, interestingly, over time it has always been revealed to be correct. Sometimes it takes time for things to be clearly revealed.***


And since CT Russell, Judge Rutherford, F. Franz etc., they all have been wrong and have even disagreed with each other.  The WT under Rutherford had a mansion built in Sandiego California to house David, and all of the faithful men of old as they were supposed to be resurrected and back on earth by the 1925.  My problem is that even though it can be proven that all of these false teaching can be seen by anyone who is honestly seeking the truth, many JWs say, "we never said that".  Yes they did and even though it can be proven from the WTs own literature, Jaws refuse to look at it or acknowledge it.

*** I actually take offense to this. As much knowledge as you have you know it is totally untrue to say all has been wrong! This was brought up in your other questions, and answered.***   

So Carol, if Jehovah speaks thru the WT as is claimed, then Jehovah has caused His people to believe falsehoods or lies.  You and I know that Jehovah would not lead His people with lies.  The second conclusion would be that ever since 1874, Charles Taze Russell didn't hear the right messages or they were simply an imperfect mans opinions and many families suffered as a result of believing numerous fals prophesies .

*** No one has suffered as a result of anything. Anyone involved through the years have bettered their lives. Become better husbands, wives, children, employers, employees and so on. We still today, as I said before, do not advise higher education. Whether the world is destroyed tomorrow or 20 yrs from now...it does not alter the fact that we are on a sinking ship, as it were, and none of us want to be onboard when that happens. Jehovah makes sure we all have what we need in this system.



Did you know that Rutherford built a mansion for David, Abraham, Jacob etc. for them to live in in 1925?

***You asked me this last time also. Yes, I knew about it and gave you an answer on this already.***

Jim, Gamaliel said “If this scheme or this work is from men, it will be overthrown; but if it is from God, you will not be able to overthrow them . . . you may perhaps be found fighters actually against God.”—Ac 5:34-39.It seems to me that if you truly are looking for the truth that you would start with the basics...such as doctrinal teachings then go from there. I admire that you have done so much of your own research, but I think I have answered these questions. I have answered you over again on these topics. If you have other questions that do no longer pertain to these, I am happy to answer those for you.

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Carol Massey

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I can answer any Bible questions that most people today are wondering about. Why do we suffer and grow old and die? Does God care? What is God`s name. Is there a Trinity? Who is the ruler of this world? What is going to happen to the world? What happens to us when we die? We all have questions from time to time which put doubts in us, but once we have a true understanding of the scriptures we can put those doubts behind us and get a true sense of security toward our future.

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Any one of us, as Jehovah's Witnesses, have had such a numerous number of Bible students and conversations at doors. The people we run into vary from housewifes, to homeless, to doctors. Everyone has the same questions and doubts and fears! We are all human, no matter what station in life we may hold. And everyone deserves the opportunity to live forever.

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