Jehovah`s Witness/conversation with Jehovahs witnesses
QUESTION: This is a subject that I have great experience with. I have both worked with Jehovah's witnesses and had them in my home. Also I have spoken to them on the street re their magazine/book display. I have quite a knowledge on the subject and am a born again Christian of not youth full years.
My Question- Why do Jehovah's witness have a basic lack of knowledge on A their organisation ( this is shown up during conversation ) B only a sectionalised understanding of the Bible as has been taught to them ( ie cliché answers by all and sundry ) C a denial of the most basic tenants of the Bible ie the Cross ( which they used to prove via Scripture text rather than semantics )re their translation has been altered to hide this important fact, and so on adinfiditum.The fact that their are several groups who call themselves Jehovahs witnesses and the fact that Russell, Rutherford and Knor would now be classed as apostates. philip
ANSWER: Hello Philip,
Thank you for those questions, I will do my best to provide answers for you.
Why do Jehovah's witness have a basic lack of knowledge on .. their organisation?
I am not sure just what you mean by basic knowledge of the “organisation”. Are you referring to the “organisational “ structure, or, are you referring to the history of the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society?
Perhaps you could let me know just what you consider basic knowledge.
To my knowledge all JWs have a basic knowledge of the organisational structure. There has been a lot of events since the WTS was first set up about 130 years ago, and a mountain if information published by the society. I have in electronic form all the WTS publications since the first WT in 1879. It takes a lot of effort and time trying to find find details of what was written through the ages. The WTS has published 2 books dealing the history of events that we can look to for information.
What individual JWs do about finding out about WTS history is up to each JW. We do not have specific lessons or classes on that subject. I would say that the majority of JWs do have have a keen interest in our history, only where we are going.
”Why do Jehovah's witness
[have] only a sectionalised understanding of the Bible as has been taught to them ( ie cliché answers by all and sundry )”
Again I am not sure just what you are asking but from what you have said I gather what you mean by “ sectionalised understanding of the Bible"
is that when you have spoken to JWs our answers are always very nearly word for word the same. If that is so, may I ask what is wrong with that?
When I talk to a someone who believes in the full understanding of the trinity, I get the same responses from them, the same arguments, the same texts. WHY? Because that is what they have been taught to believe.
We have our understanding of the Bible and try to keep in line with the following Principles.
“Let every man be fully persuaded in his own mind.” (KJV) or as per the Bible in Basic English “Let every man be certain in his mind.” - the principle there is that we must be fully persuaded, certain, “be fully convinced” (NWT) in our minds on a subject. If we are, then would that not mean that wed answer in the same way
Keeping that in mind we also want to follow the council Paul gave the Corinthians “Now I make request to you, my brothers, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you will all say the same thing
, and that there may be no divisions among you
, so that you may be in complete agreement
, in the same mind
and in the same opinion
.” (1 Corinthians 1:10
“Why do Jehovah's witness denial of the most basic tenants of the Bible ie the Cross?”
First why do you feel that the cross is a basic tenant of the Bible? What is so basic about it? We do not put any emphasis on the implement that Jesus died on at all. We do put emphasis on the fact that Jesus died as a ransom sacrifice for mankind. What he died on is not important. If a close friend of mine literally took a bullet for me so that I could live, I would not want to make a copy of the gun or the bullet as a reminder of what he did . I would want to remember his selfless sacrifice though but not with such replicas.
The Greek word rendered as “cross” in most Bibles is “stauros” which has the basic meaning of “stake or post (as set upright), i.e. (specifically) a pole” (Strongs Greek Lexicon word number 4716) The Romans used several types of implements of death from a “crux simplex” or stake or pole, to various types of crosses. The Bible simply uses the term “stauros”. Some have concluded that in the case of Jesus “stauros” applied to cross beam, and that it was this cross beam that he carried through the streets. The Bible gives no further detail as to what the “stauros” actual was, except for at Acts 5:30
we get a clue as to what this may have been “The God of our fathers raised up Jesus, whom ye slew and hanged on a tree.” The use of the word “xulon” (“by implication a stick, club or tree or other wooden article or substance: — staff, stocks, tree, wood.” - Strongs Greek word number 3586.) Notice that the KJV renders "xulon" as "tree". The use of "xulon" here also suggest Jesus was nailed to one upright piece of wood.
The meaning of “stauros” later come to include the idea of a cross, but that is not how it was used in ancient times http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Instrument_of_Jesus'_crucifixion
The cross in the major “Christian” religions become a symbol of worship. Many churches tend to have it as a part of a shrine on a wall, as part of the decoration of their places or worship. People will kiss the “cross” in hope it will have some sort of saving effect on them So for the vast majority of “Christians” it become in integral part of their worship, it became an idol.
In view of the command not to have idols we decided to distance ourselves from using a symbol that for so many meant so much. And seeing that the basic meaning of the death instrument of Jesus is an upright pole that is where we decided to go to avoid the idea that we supported the cross that had become such a significant religious icon that it become idolised.
1 John 5:21
" Little children, keep yourselves from idols." (KJV)
2 Corinthians 5:7
"For we walk by faith, not by sight " (JKV)
Why do Jehovah's witness [use a] translation [that] has been altered to hide this important fact, and so on
First I assume that was referring to the NWT using the word “stake” in stead of “cross”. The use of the word “stake” is more correctly aligned with the Greek word “stauros” so it is not hiding anything but revealing what the Greek says.
I also assume that you may be referring to other differences in the NWT to the most other Bibles. If so would you like to discuss them?
The fact that their are several groups who call themselves Jehovahs witnesses and the fact that Russell, Rutherford and Knor would now be classed as apostates.
I know of only two groups that use the name Jehovah,s Witnesses. Those of us that are associated with the WTBTS and a group from Romania called “The true Faith Jehovah's Witnesses “ .
There is a third very small discussion group that uses the name “Christian Witnesses of Jah Discussion forum” who are led by a man who was only a JW for a few years and had some different ideas to what was being taught.
There were a number of groups that split of after C T Russell died for various reasons. None of these use the Jehovah's Witnesses. They class them selves as we were once called Bible Students.
Russell, Rutherford and Knorr, like us today were always learning. And as they learnt more they made adjustments just as we still do and Just as the first century Christians did
If I have not covered what you have asked or if I have misunderstood what you were asking, please let me know.
---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------
QUESTION: Hello Brenton,thank you for taking the time to reply. I do have an open mind because as stated I have had both pioneers in my home and worked with Jehovah's witnesses. Right a very quick reply- There is something wrong with you all parrot like stating the same answers and this is that it shows a hive mind, the queen ( the governing body ) being in control all repeating the approved sentences. If you get a group of experts together ( any subject ) yes on some things they agree, but on some things they do not, ie, they have their own opinions. This I have never known with Jehovah's witnesses. Now the Cross- Your organisation again I am not using semantics taught that the blood sprinkled on the mercy seat which represented Christs sacrifice, was in the form of the cross. Knowing this and having produced your own ' translation' your 'Bible' now has spattered ( uncontrolled ) rather than sprinkled to hide your previous teachings- Now Your on Scriptures state that if a prophet speaks falsely that his utterances do not come true, have nothing to do with him as he doesn't speak for Jehovah. You have the watchtowers, look it up yourself how many times they claim to be a prophet ! note the false prophet will be thrown into the lake of fire, re- 1874-1914-1926-1975 etc. I could go into more details but know need. My submission is that You and all other Jehovah's witnesses follow an organisation which you have been skilfully mind melded into thinking that it is of God, when both history and the Bible prove otherwise.
Please answer one question with a yes or no for all those who may read this..... Is their salvation outside of the watchtower and its governing body ? Because if yes, why are you a member of such a proven false organisation... and if no, are you saying that God can not work through individuals or other Christian groups except yours because if so are you really sure we are talking about the real God or a false one ?
May He bless you and open your eyes to the truth, that is my prayer.
In His Service, philip
Thank you for the follow up.
First I am wondering why you did not respond to any of the texts I mentioned.? As a person who says he wants to follow the Bible, do not those texts I used earlier (Romans 14:5; 1 Corinthians 1:10
) teach you that there is a need to be, as you suggest “that it shows a hive mind”. If they do not teach you that, then what do they teach you?
Now Witnesses can have their own opinions on some matters. Talking amongst ourselves we often discuss issues that we may not understand or different aspects of a passage. But it is prudent on our part not to try to convince others that what we may think is correct. Why is that prudent? Now lets look again at the council that Paul gave as recoded at 1 Corinthians 1:10
“ “Now I make request to you, my brothers, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you will all say the same thing
, and that there may be no divisions among you
, so that you may be in complete agreement
, in the same mind
and in the same opinion
.” ( KJV) When we are in the public eye or teaching someone what we believe we follow those instructions.
The first century Christians were admonished to be obedient to the things they had learnt
2 Corinthians 2:9
“For to this end also did I write, that I might know the proof of you, whether ye be obedient in all things.”
2 Thessalonians 3:14
“And if any man obey not our word by this epistle, note that man, and have no company with him, that he may be ashamed.”
Now Paul and the apostles did not teach about morality in their writings they also taught doctrine The council given was that the congregations should continue in the things that they had learnt for the apostles
2 Timothy 3:14
“ But continue thou in the things which thou hast learned and hast been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them;”
So yes we follow that council united in what to teach others. Even if we do have a different way of seeing things when talking amongst ourselves we must be extremely careful not to be seen, or to come across as, trying to teach our own thoughts, because, to actually teach something different can, and has, caused divisions. That happened in the first century Christian congregation. Different ones started spreading or teaching their own ideas, thoughts or understandings and this cased divisions. The council give about such ones to to remove them from the congregations.
Now with the rest of your post, overall I really was unsure as to just what you were trying to convey, so I have answered with what I thought.
You spoke about “the blood sprinkled on the mercy seat which represented Christs sacrifice”
. I am unsure as to just what you are trying to say (what connection there is) with that in regard to the “cross”. I had to go searching for what you meant by “the mercy seat”. That is not a term we are accustomed to using. It appears in the NWT only as footnotes. The newest mention I could find ion our literature was from 1997 From 1950 onward there are only about 20 instances of that phrase being used.
The Hebrew word used is “kapporeth “ The Brown-Driver-Briggs Hebrew Lexicon tells us that this word means “cover, lid” This “kapporeth “ was a part of the “ark of the covenant” It covered the chess or box in which the ten commandants were placed along with a golden jar containing some manna and the rod of Aaron that budded. On this “kapporeth “ were two cherubs.
The NWT uses the word cover in the Old Testament. In the New testament the NWT uses the word propitiatory, For example Hebrews 2:17
“.Consequently, he had to become like his “brothers” in all respects, so that he could become a merciful and faithful high priest in things relating to God, in order to offer a propitiatory sacrifice . . .” The words “ propitiatory sacrifce” means a covering sacrifce foir us. Showing that the sacrifice of Jesus covers o0ur sins,
The KJV uses the word “reconciliation” at Hebrews 2:17
Now you say Knowing this and having produced your own ' translation' your 'Bible' now has spattered ( uncontrolled ) rather than sprinkled to hide your previous teachings
It would help if you mentioned what text you were referring to. The basic Hebrew word is “nâzâh = naw-zaw', which, according to Strongs Hebrew Lexicon means A primitive root; to spirt
, that is, besprinkle (especially in expiation): - sprinkle.”
The Brown-Driver-Briggs' Hebrew Lexicon also gives the first mreaning as “to spurt, spatter, sprinkle”
The first meaning is “to spirt” (spurt). So the use of spatter (s) (ed) is within the meaning of spirt
Here are a few texts from the NWT to show that it uses “sprinkle”
Leviticus 7:1, 2
. . .“‘This is the law of the guilt offering: It is something most holy. 2 They will slaughter the guilt offering in the place where they slaughter the burnt offerings, and its blood should be sprinkled
on all sides of the altar. . . Chapter 8 verses 19 and 24 also say in the NWT that Moses sprinkled
2 Kings 16:13
. . .And on that altar he continued to make his burnt offerings and his grain offerings smoke; he also poured out his drink offerings and sprinkled
the blood of his communion sacrifices on it.
“For if the blood of goats and of bulls and the ashes of a heifer sprinkled
on those who have been defiled sanctifies for the cleansing of the flesh. . .
. . .For when Moses had spoken every commandment of the Law to all the people, he took the blood of the young bulls and of the goats, with water, scarlet wool, and hyssop, and sprinkled
the book and all the people, 20 saying: “This is the blood of the covenant that God has commanded you to keep.” 21 He likewise sprinkled
the tent and all the vessels of the holy service with the blood. 22 Yes, according to the Law nearly all things are cleansed with blood, and unless blood is poured out no forgiveness takes place.
. . .and Jesus the mediator of a new covenant, and the sprinkled
blood, which speaks in a better way than Abel’s blood.
You said …. “ our 'Bible' now has spattered ( uncontrolled ) rather than sprinkled to hide your previous teachings
”.... May I ask please, what was the previous teaching that has been hidden?
You bring up 1874-1914-1926-1975
and you arre under the false assumption that these were prophecies. Now I am not going to spend much time on the next section at this time because these “dates” are not and never were prophecies. There were and always jave been understandings of various previously written Bible prophecies. They were not understood as NEW prophecies or revelations from God. I can explain each one of those understandings but that will take several pages on each subject as to why and how they were just understandings.
Those explanations are very different to prophecies as written in the Bible..
Is their salvation outside of the watchtower and its governing body?
To that specific question the answer is YES. There is “salvation out side of the Is their salvation outside of the watchtower and its governing body”
Now I have to clarify that because I am being pedantic here.
Jehovah's Witnesses do not belong to the Watchtower nor do we belong to the governing body.
The Watchtower is a magazine. The Watchtower Bible and Tract Society is a publishing organisation that produces the Watchtower magazine and other Bible based literature including Bibles, tracts and videos in many different languages. The WTBTS belongs to Jehovah's Witnesses we do not belong to it. It is just one aspect of our organisation.
The governing body are just Jehovah’s Witnesses who have the responsibility of the overall shepherding of us. These men are more accountable to Jehovah for any mistakes that they may make than what most people call the “rank and fill” Witnesses. At Luke 12:48
“For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required: and to whom men have committed much, of him they will ask the more.”
Now the longest time member of the governing body Gerriit Losch in a depsotion to a Supreme court of California on Feb 05 2014 made these comments
6 I am a member of the ecclesiastical Governing Body of Jehovah's Witnesses...
7 The Governing Body of Jehovah's Witnesses is the highest ecclesiastical authority for the faith of Jehovah’s Witnesses, and it exercises spiritual oversight for Jehovah's Witnesses worldwide
8 …. I do not direct and I have not directed the day to day operations of the Watchtower. I do not answer to the Watchtower. I do not have, and never have had any authority as an individual to make or determine corporate policy fro the Watchtower or any department of the Watchtower
9 The Watchtower does nit have, and never has had authority over me.
Just as he has said the Watchtower does not have authority over over anyone JW. The elders in each congregation has limited authority over JWs with the responsibility of keeping each congregation spiritually and morally clean .
Jehovah''s Witnesses are an international association of people united in doing the mission of following the command of Jesus in preaching the good news of Gods Kingdom.
Belonging to the group of people that God approves of IS important for salvation. In the end we have to “work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.” Philippians 2:12
Please if my answer has not covered what you asked, please clarify exactly what it is you have been wanting to know.