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What is the difference between and oath and a vow?

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What is the difference between and oath and a vow?

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For starters:

*** Insight-2 p. 1162 Vow ***
VOW
A solemn promise made to God to perform some act, make some offering or gift, enter some service or condition, or abstain from certain things not unlawful in themselves. A vow was a voluntary expression made of one’s own free will. Being a solemn promise, a vow carried the force of an oath or a swearing, and at times the two expressions accompany each other in the Bible. (Nu 30:2; Mt 5:33) “Vow” is more the declaration of intent, while “oath” denotes the appeal made to a higher authority attesting to the truthfulness or binding nature of the declaration. Oaths often accompanied attestation to a covenant.—Ge 26:28; 31:44, 53.
 

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I thought it might be interesting to see how these words were understood and differentiated by reference works over the past hundred years or so. Unfortunately, the coverage of the three terms in synonym dictionaries is somewhat spotty (though still interesting) across the years. Here is what some authorities have said. From James Fernald, English Synonyms and Antonyms (1896):

In the highest sense, as in a court of justice, "an oath is reverent appeal to God in corroboration of what one says," ABBOTT LAW DICT[IONARY]. ...An oath is made to man in the name of God; a vow, to God without the intervention, often without the knowledge, of man. In the lower sense, an oath may be mere blasphemy or profane swearing.

This book doesn't include pledge in the same group of words with oath and vow, but instead lists it with (among other terms) compactcovenantobligationpactpromise, and stipulation, under the general heading contract, remarking

All of these words involve at least two parties, tho an engagement or promise may be the act of but one.

Webster's Dictionary of Synonyms (1942) doesn't cover oath or vow, but offers these comments in distinguishing the verb pledge from the verb promise:

Quote

Promise, engage, pledge, plight, covenant, contract come into comparison as meaning to give one's word that one will do make, give, accept, or the like, something stipulated. Promise,both as a transitive and as an intransitive verb, implies a giving assurance (usually orally or in writing) but it suggests no further grounds for expectation of the fulfillment of what is promised; [examples omitted]. ... Pledge, chiefly a transitive verb may imply either the giving voluntarily of a promise by some actor words that suggest the giving of a solemn assurance, or the provision of a formal guarantee (as to pledge one's honor that one will see that a dying friends wish is respected; [other examples omitted]), or the putting of another or of others under a solemn promise to do, to forbear, or the like [examples omitted].

The noun forms of pledge associated with the verb forms described here would involve the promise or guarantee or security that the specified action will be performed.

S.I. Hayakawa, Choose the Right Word: A Modern Guide to Synonyms (1968) again passes over oath and vow, but addresses pledge as a noun in some detail:

Quote

pledge, bail, bond, collateral, guarantee, security. These words refer to a promise that is backed up in someway and reinforced by the commitment of one's honor or material possessions. Pledge is the most general of these, applying in any case where someone solemnly promises to remain loyal to a principle or to undertake a given task: the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag; a pledge of $10,000 to the Alumni Fund; a pledge to have the alterations completed by Friday. Only the person's honor backs up his promise in this case.

And finally, Merriam-Webster's Dictionary of Synonyms (1984) examines pledge as a noun in the company of four related nouns:

Quote

Pledge, earnest, token, pawn, hostage are comparable when they denote something that is given or held as a sign of another's faith or intention to do what has been promised. Pledge, originally and still in some applications a technical legal term, applies in general to something handed over to another as a token [example omitted], or as security for the performance of an obligation or payment of a debt [examples omitted].

These discussions suggest that though oathvow, and pledge are all promises, they have different focuses. An oath is a swearing in the presence of God with regard to a commitment one is making to one or more other people (as to tell the truth as a witness in court, or to uphold the dignity of one's office). A vow is a promise to God (or to something philosophically analogous) to accept and discharge faithfully some specified spiritual or material obligation. A pledge is a promise on one's honor or sense of duty to take some action in fulfillment of a contract with other human beings.

https://english.stackexchange.com/questions/11565/oath-vs-pledge-vs-vow

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      "… commission to speak as a "prophet" in His name…" Watchtower 1972 Mar 15 p.189
      "The Watchtower is a magazine without equal in the earth …. This is not giving any credit to the magazine's publishers, but is due to the great Author of the Bible with it truths and prophecies, and who now interprets its prophecies." Watchtower 1943 Apr 15 p.127
      "The Watchtower is not the instrument of any man or set of men, nor is it published according to the whims of men. No man's opinion is expressed in The Watchtower. God feeds his own people, and surely God uses those who love and serve him according to his own will. Those who oppose The Watchtower are not capable of discerning the truth that God is giving to the children of his organization, and this is the very strongest proof that such opposers are not of God's organization." Watchtower 1931 Nov 1 p.327

       
      So, let's look at some of these prophecies.
       
      1889- In subsequent chapters we present proofs that the setting up of the Kingdom of God has already begun...And that the "battle of the great day of God almighty [revelation 16:14], which will end in A.D. 1914 with the complete overthrow of the earth's present rulership, is already commenced. [The 1915 edition of this book changed "A.D. 1914" to "A.D. 1915."] *from the book "The Time is at Hand; 1889 1897 "Our Lord, the appointed King, is now present, since October 1874," (Studies in the Scriptures, vol. 4, p. 621). 1899 "...the 'battle of the great day of God Almighty' (Revelation 16:14), which will end in A.D. 1914 with the complete overthrow of earth's present rulership, is already commenced," (The Time Is at Hand, 1908 edition, p. 101). 1916 "The Bible chronology herein presented shows that the six great 1000 year days beginning with Adam are ended, and that the great 7th Day, the 1000 years of Christ's Reign, began in 1873," (The Time Is at Hand, forward, p. ii). 1918 "Therefore we may confidently expect that 1925 will mark the return of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and the faithful prophets of old, particularly those named by the Apostle in Hebrews 11, to the condition of human perfection," (Millions Now Living Will Never Die, p. 89). 1922 "The date 1925 is even more distinctly indicated by the Scriptures than 1914," (Watchtower, Sept. 1, 1922, p. 262). 1923 "Our thought is, that 1925 is definitely settled by the Scriptures. As to Noah, the Christian now has much more upon which to base his faith than Noah had upon which to base his faith in a coming deluge," (Watchtower, Apr. 1, 1923, p. 106). 1925 "The year 1925 is here. With great expectation Christians have looked forward to this year. Many have confidently expected that all members of the body of Christ will be changed to heavenly glory during this year. This may be accomplished. It may not be. In his own due time God will accomplish his purposes concerning his people. Christians should not be so deeply concerned about what may transpire this year," (Watchtower, Jan. 1, 1925, p. 3). 1925 "It is to be expected that Satan will try to inject into the minds of the consecrated, the thought that 1925 should see an end to the work," (Watchtower, Sept., 1925, p. 262). 1926 "Some anticipated that the work would end in 1925, but the Lord did not state so. The difficulty was that the friends inflated their imaginations beyond reason; and that when their imaginations burst asunder, they were inclined to throw away everything," (Watchtower, p. 232). 1931 "There was a measure of disappointment on the part of Jehovah's faithful ones on earth concerning the years 1917, 1918, and 1925, which disappointment lasted for a time...and they also learned to quit fixing dates," (Vindication, p. 338). 1941 "Receiving the gift, the marching children clasped it to them, not a toy or plaything for idle pleasure, but the Lord's provided instrument for most effective work in the remaining months before Armageddon," (Watchtower, Sept. 15, 1941, p. 288). 1968 "True, there have been those in times past who predicted an 'end to the world', even announcing a specific date. Yet nothing happened. The 'end' did not come. They were guilty of false prophesying. Why? What was missing?.. Missing from such people were God's truths and evidence that he was using and guiding them," (Awake, Oct. 8, 1968). 1968 "Why are you looking forward to 1975?" (Watchtower, Aug. 15, 1968, p. 494). 6,000 years from Adam ended in A.D. 1872. (Daily Heavenly Manna, inside cover page),6,000 years of human history ended in 1873.(The Time is at Hand, p.33),6,000 years of human history ended in 1972.(The Truth Shall Make You Free, p.152, 1943 edition),6,000 years of human history ended in 1975. (Awake!, October 8th, 1968, page 15).  
      Would a true prophet of God make false prophecies about World War II?
      ‘The Nazis will destroy the British.’ (Fifth Column, p 15)
      The new book titled Children will prove useful ‘in the remaining months before Armageddon’ (Watchtower, 15 September 1941, p 288)
      ‘The end of Nazi Fascist hierarchy will come and will mark the end forever of demon rule.’ (Watchtower, 15 December 1941, p 377)
       
       
       
      Note that just admitting you were false prophets does not make you no longer false prophets.

       
    • By Israeli Bar Avaddhon
      " When you see a cloud rising in western places, you immediately say: 'It is the time', and it happens. And when you see a south wind blowing, you say, 'There will be a heat wave,' and it happens. Hypocrites, you know to examine the appearance of earth and sky, but why do not you know look at this particular time? "- Luke 12: 54-56   From the first article in this blog wanted to distance itself clearly from all those sites and polemical blogs created solely as a safety valve and cast a shadow on the governing body or the people of God as a whole. Many of these, though not all, are the expression of the frustration of some for losing certain positions, visibility and below. We do not reveal any mystery by asserting that some are puffed up with pride thinking of always being right and being invested supreme authority - 1 Timothy 3: 6 We do not even say nothing strange if we say that some people, seeing recognized their merits, real or perceived, on the job or elsewhere, have seen in the "theocratic assignments" a kind of redemption. One way to demonstrate the "worth something" - Psalm 18:27; Proverbs 6:16, 17 For this and other reasons, when some have seen the collapse of all their "dreams of glory," they thought to start a smear campaign against God's people and also have the pass to do anything - 2 Peter 2:22 Apart from these, you have to recognize or admit the possibility that there are people who have opened sites or blogs contentious because they suffered real injustice or clashing sincerely from a scriptural point of view - John 9:34; Revelation 2: 4, 20 If anyone re-discuss openly the "doctrine" of 1914, for example, would sooner or later expelled from the congregation if they did not fit immediately into the ranks. It would be presumptuous to think that the reflections made in this blog on the 1914, as well as on other subjects, are not already been done by others. Although humanly speaking the author of this blog is close to all those who have been expelled not for a repeated offense but because of his own conscience on biblical themes, none of us has the authority to denigrate, insult or alienate others by the people which, net of all faults and limitations , it is still God's people. That each of us to reflect seriously on the words of the Lord when he said what we find in Matthew 18: 6 So, as much as depends on us and as long as Jehovah will show us clearly something else, no one let the people of God because if within the His People there will be severe discipline (also because of those who were unjustly expelled - compares Giovanni 16: 2), outside of His People there will be something else. Of course, situations may arise in which we listen to our conscience - Romans 14: 5 To avoid this sad event, we are encouraged to be "cautious as serpents" also to our brothers - Matthew 10:16; 24:10 For the moment we can share many things with our brothers including the preaching work, attendance at meetings, etc., without necessarily having to collide on the 1914 or Babylon the Great. So, reiterating the concept, regardless of the GB and errors of God's people as a whole, a blog or website for purely polemical can not be considered a viable option for those who love God and sincerely studying His Word. We should also ask ourselves "What gave me" a site after reading an article that mentioned what is wrong and even make it a novel is the easiest thing in the world * (see footnote). This introduction was necessary to explain the following article because the reasons could be easily misunderstood. As we saw from the very first articles, though this blog is dedicated to the prophecy, it was not possible to treat the prophecy without touching some doctrines associated with them. The Word of God has such a strong internal consistency that is not reasonable to believe that he could explain the prophecies of Revelation (and other prophetic books) without touching the doctrine of the resurrection (which will happen at the end of the millennium and not during), the order chronological or not the book, the "doctrine" of 1914, the seven days of the dream of Nebuchadnezzar and so on. For this reason you will find after not purely prophetic that was inevitable anyway to deal hope to understand something more about the prophecies. This highlights one of the reasons why some will never understand the prophecies in spite of the efforts: the inability or unwillingness to renegotiate certain doctrines that are upstream. On the same principle we must necessarily realize that you can not move forward in the understanding of the times in which we live and those who arrive without touching the sensitive topic of "governing body" or "quality of spiritual food." This has already been done, more or less soft, in several previous post (see for example the article entitled "Restoration of true worship. Dress clean for the High Priest"). At least with regard to the current understanding, the prophecies do understand that the "light" to lead the people of God (which is clearly not the Bible or it may not be less - Psalm 119: 105) will turn off for a certain period of time and this will serve to lay bare the depth of our relationship with Jehovah - compares Isaiah 28:16 So it does not be surprised if before then that the light begins to fade. Many of us have noticed that certain topics are not touched for years and that on certain issues it is more elusive than before. In return, all the paper work which involves legalism for appointments, discipline, legal protections and various committees have greatly strengthened - Psalm 127: 1, 2 So the following article is of course a critical and will be targeted to the specific material , but everything will be done remembering who we are (Romans 3:23, 24; 1 Corinthians 4: 7) with the sole purpose of reflecting as part of prophecy is already fulfilled before our eyes - 1 Corinthians 14: 8, 9 The reader is invited not necessarily share the article but at least compare the scriptures mentioned and to consider whether the arguments are brought forward with logic.   The following article will cover part of the Watchtower in October 2017. The article is titled "Visions of Zechariah: because there concern?"   A vision does not understand something more of a command or a need?     Since the beginning, we can focus on the questions listed in the first paragraph. Why Jehovah gave to the prophet visions so unusual? In what situation were the Israelites at that time? What do we learn today from those visions?   The questions are certainly deep and detailed so that we isolate some notable points to see how we have tried to give an answer. After a brief explanation of the background and necessary (paragraph two), " Jehovah assured them that would help them restore the true worship" (paragraph three). Let us pause a moment and reflect on these words. He took for themselves, without knowing anything of Zechariah, the book and the time in which it was written, one would think that the theme that will be developed will focus precisely on how Jehovah will restore true worship. Doing disquisitions on whether past or future fulfillment of these words, should not talk about this? Among other things paragraph confirms that this will be the sixth and seventh vision and this would appear to suggest that these visions reveal details on how Jehovah will do this. Besides a vision should include something more of a command; the same ten commandments and all the Mosaic law did not need a vision that was dictated and that the Israelites understood the requirements of the Most Almighty and moral norms that should have respect. Instead the following paragraphs, although the steering wheel scroll vision written in front and behind is "very special", they say that "God will punish whoever steals and among Christians there is no place for any kind of theft." Zechariah really needed a vision to understand that God does not tolerate the theft? Apart from that, as we have said, it seems strange that a vision is limited to this, but the question we should ask is ... "Zacharias did not know that Jehovah does not tolerate the theft?" - Compare Exodus 20:15; Leviticus 19:11, 13; Proverbs 11: 1; 20:23 It 's unusual for a prophet of Jehovah but also the rest of the people had to remember a need so obvious, present even in the most primitive human legal systems.
      It would not be sufficient to read "the book of the law" as in the past it was done and how the law itself provided? Until the end of paragraph seven, there is not the slightest indication that this vision can have a deeper explanation and that can be applied particularly in the future. The subsequent paragraphs remain the same "conservative" line. We should not swear falsely, and the promises made to Jehovah - compares Leviticus 19:12; Numbers 30: 2; Ecclesiastes 5: 5, 6 The next vision is even more interesting.   Even the arrival city has no prophetic significance?   From the subtitle "The evil is put in its proper place," we can see how the vision that perhaps leaves Zaccaria "horrified" with all its details, it "makes it clear that Jehovah will never tolerate any form of evil within his people and will ensure that it is eliminated quickly. " Then women with wings stork carrying away the mingled with evil in the land of Shinar, underline this aspect. Why they choose Sinar and not Nineveh, for example? Because "Israelites them have thought that Sinar was the place where relegate Evil. Zechariah and his contemporaries Jews, in fact, they could confirm that Babylon wickedness was widespread." Again the vision of the container, the evil woman, women with wings stork and the country of destination have no special meaning, much less prophetic. It must be said that if we had dealt with this issue even thirty years ago, maybe someone would begin to calculate the distance between Jerusalem and Sinar to find some correspondence with some meeting or resolution modern or past. This article is definitely more conservative than those of a few years ago ** (see note below) but it really is prudent that we see in this article, or something else? We try to be very objective without hiring a team cheer attitude. Do we really think that Zacharias had seven visions in such a special time, to learn that Jehovah does not tolerate theft, falsehood and evil? Do we really think that the restoration-of true worship has nothing to do with our days? If we had started from chapter four instead to section five, we would not perhaps have inevitably head towards Revelation? - compares Zechariah 4: 2, 3 and Revelation 11: 4 Zechariah chapter four he not also speaks of the restoration-of true worship, just as do the five chapters and six? If Zechariah and Revelation are connected, even if only in part, we would not have had to reflect on the identity of this "evil woman" which, incidentally, is transported in the most important city of Babylon that "to his own place"?   We said that the article is not intended as a criticism for its own sake so that everyone will have to make their own assessments in the light of the scriptures. Certainly, as we have seen in the articles entitled "We are staggering like drunks?" and "Approaching Storm", we can understand "how far we are" the discipline of Jehovah, and also understand the reasons why he decides have to discipline there meditating on these aspects. If they make a reason all those who believe that the withdrawal of the books "Pay Attention to Daniel's Prophecy" and "The Revelation Its Grand Climax" was the prelude to a new version with "new light." Indeed, there is to be afraid to imagine the explanations that may be. However, those who really pay attention to the prophetic word, they have no reason to be discouraged or be upset. If the light of a certain guide goes out, we have a guide that will never disappoint - Isaiah 40: 8 It 'important and urgent than ever, particularly in view of what will happen, become independent in our research and sharpen our power of reason - Romans 12: 1 We must also realize the responsibility that entails some knowledge. We must help not those who have become critical for bias and with whom you can not think and even those who can not and do not intend to call into question every truth imposed from above - Matthew 15: 6 We must help those who can still asking questions that do not come from the organization or even close their eyes to what is going to happen. We do not know to what extent the people of God will reshaped , but up to the revelation of the two witnesses in sackcloth this will continue to be the people of God and in any case, whatever happens, let us cling tightly to the Word of God that is the only truth - John 17:17 Recalling the words of Jesus quoted at the beginning of this article, and keeping in mind that we are nobody and we have one thousandth of its authority , make sure not to become like those who were part of God's people and that they were recognized as authorities but at the same time, could not understand "their particular time." We do not seek excuses why everyone has a Bible and the basic knowledge to deepen the arguments. Let us not be too full of us, basking in our safety thinking that others will pay. We could wake up in a really unwanted. How would we feel if the Lord said, " You're a hypocrite" ? - compares Amos 3: 2     Footnotes. * This also applies to all those sites that say they are prophetic but are merely interpreting the past Jehovah's judgments to the people of God. This is also a fairly easy game.   ** Just take a look at the book, no longer in publication "Pay Attention to Daniel's Prophecy" where virtually any number of days in the prophetic book were applied to assemblies, resolutions and publications.
    • Guest Nicole
    • Guest Nicole
      By Guest Nicole
      Why JW.ORG does not show development regarding sexual abuse cases as it does with other legal issues? 
       
    • Guest Nicole
      By Guest Nicole
      PYEONGCHANG, South Korea — To those watching on TV, religion may seem absent from the Winter Olympic Games. Away from the spotlight, though, an estimated 3,000 missionaries are on hand.
      About 2,000 missionaries — South Korean and international — are working in the city of Gangneung, where the indoor Olympic events are being held. The remaining 1,000 are working in Pyeongchang, site of ski, snowboard and other events.
      There is no reliable count of missionaries at Olympics past. But the number of local missionaries here far exceeds previous games, said Marty Youngblood, leader of the Georgia Baptist Convention mission team, who is at his fifth Olympics this year.
      South Korea, which is 29% Christian, and among whom Protestants predominate, enjoys high levels of religious tolerance. Buddha’s birthday and Christmas are both national holidays.
      The Winter Games have attracted teams of Baptists, Presbyterians and Methodists. Jehovah’s Witnesses and Mormons also abound, each group sharing the gospel in its own way. The United Christian Churches of Korea, a coalition of 144 local congregations, is helping foreign mission groups to arrange housing and ministry sites and learn about Korean culture.
      Local churches are taking advantage of an Olympics at their doorstep. Many have set up welcome stations in parking lots, where they give away snacks, coffee and Christian literature.
      In addition to its coffee and snack giveaway, Somang Presbyterian Church — located in the shadow of the Olympic venues — is showcasing a live orchestra and church members dressed in traditional costume. It’s just one of the 26 local churches in Gangneung with Olympic outreach ministries.
      Then there’s the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ Helping Hands Center, a two-story building on prime real estate across the street from the train station in Gangneung. Working there is Coloradan Chandler Petry, chosen by her church with a small group of other Mormon missionaries already in Korea to serve at the Olympics.
      The center’s multilingual staff will give athletes, members of the media and any Olympic spectator a warm drink and a place to recharge their phones. But its main goal, according to the church’s website, “is for as many as possible to see the light of the gospel of Jesus Christ in the eyes of the members and missionaries.”
      The Jehovah’s Witnesses have sent about 1,000 missionaries to the Winter Games, far more than to previous Olympics, said Steven Park, public information officer for the Jehovah’s Witness Korea branch. He says that the work they do in Gangneung and Pyeongchang is no different from the ministry they do elsewhere and that some missionaries will remain in the area after the Olympics.
      One of the most popular tools of ministry for these Olympic missionaries is lapel pin trading.
      Myungsu No, a campus minister in Seoul, says his students from the Baptist Student Union use pin trading — a pastime at this and previous Olympics — to spread the gospel. While athletes and spectators trade pins that typically depict a certain country, sport or team, mission groups give away a “More Than Gold” lapel pin, borrowing the slogan a consortium of missionary groups adopted in the 1990s to brand their Olympic outreach.
      Psalm 119:127 declares that the commands of God are loved “more than gold.” The reference to gold at the Olympics, where athletes’ highest reward for their performance is a gold medal, is borrowed by the missionaries to suggest there is a higher reward to be sought through faith.
      Veteran missionaries trained in the art of Olympic pin trading are passing down the skill to the new generation. The missionaries make an initial pin trade using a nonreligious pin they have collected — say, that of the USA ski jump team. This often prompts a conversation and a chance for the missionary to offer the trader the “More Than Gold” pin as a gift.
      Some missionaries who work elsewhere in Asia have decided to take a break to focus on the Olympics.
      American Kathryn Daniel, based in China, says she felt called to evangelize at the Winter Games because of her personal connection with Korea. She spent 12 years of her life in the country with her missionary parents.
      Nine months ago, she heard her father was getting a group of other retired missionaries to go to the Olympics, and she thought, “I think this is God telling me to go, ‘Kathy, just go.’” Daniel is staying in Korea for a week, working with the group from the Georgia Baptist Convention.
      The first weekend of the Olympics, mission groups passed out Christian literature in the Olympic park unimpeded.
      Then Olympic park officials posted signs informing visitors that passing out religious material in the park was banned, and any materials found would be confiscated.
      Youngblood, of the Georgia Baptist Convention, said he is not concerned. His missionaries are also using the pin trading and only give pamphlets to those who want to learn more.
      And A-lim Jang, a recent university graduate and student leader with Baptist Student Union missionaries, said pin trading has allowed her and her colleagues to share the gospel “with many people that God puts in our path.”
      Madeline C. Mulkey is a senior at the University of South Carolina School of Journalism and Mass Communications. She is doing a special online documentary and a series of articles on “God at the Game.” Her project is funded in part by the Magellan Scholarship Program.
      This article originally appeared on Religion News Service. Its content is created separately from USA TODAY.
      https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/world/2018/02/22/guess-whos-also-competing-olympics-thousands-missionaries/363582002/
    • By Israeli Bar Avaddhon
      “When you see a cloud rising in the west, at once you say, ‘A storm is coming,Â’ and it happens. And when you see that a south wind is blowing, you say, ‘There will be a heat wave,Â’ and it occurs. Hypocrites, you know how to examine the appearance of earth and sky, but why do you not know how to examine this particular time?” - Luke 12:54-56
      The following article will cover part of the Watch Tower of October 2017.
      The article is titled "The visions of Zechariah: why do they concern us?"

      A vision does not include something more than a command or a need?
       
      From the beginning we can concentrate on the questions reported in the first paragraph.
      Why did Jehovah give such unusual visions to the prophet? In what situation were the Israelites at that time? What do we learn today from those visions?
      The questions are certainly profound and detailed, so we isolate some remarkable points to see how we tried to respond.
      After a brief and dutiful explanation of the background (paragraph two), "Jehovah assured them of the fact that he would help them restore true worship" (paragraph three).
      Let's pause for a moment and reflect on these words.
      Taken by themselves, without knowing anything about Zechariah, the book and the time in which it was written, one would think that the theme that will be developed will focus on how Jehovah will restore true worship.
      Without making any inquiries about the eventual past or future fulfillment of these words, should not you talk about this?
      Among other things, the paragraph confirms that it will be the sixth and seventh vision and this would suggest that these visions will reveal the details on how Jehovah will do this.
      On the other hand, a vision should include something more than a command; the same ten commandments and all the Mosaic law did not need a vision to be dictated and so that the Israelites understood the demands of the Almighty God and the moral norms that they would have to respect.
      On the contrary, the following paragraphs, although the vision of the flying scroll written before and behind is "very particular", they say that "God will punish anyone who steals and among Christians there is no place for any kind of theft".
      Did Zaccaria really need a vision to understand that God does not tolerate theft?
      Apart from that, as we said, it seems strange that a vision is limited to this but the question we should ask ourselves is ... "Zacharias did not know that Jehovah will not tolerate the theft?" - compare Exodus 20:15; Leviticus 19:11, 13; Proverbs 11: 1; 20:23 It is very strange for a prophet of Jehovah but also the rest of the people had to remember such an obvious need, present also in the most primitive human legal systems. Would not it have been enough to read "from the book of the law" as it had been done in the past and how the law itself was foreseen? Until the end of paragraph seven, there is not the slightest indication that this vision can have a deeper explanation and that it can be particularly applied in the future. Also the following paragraphs remain on the same "prudent" line. We must not falsely swear and keep the promises made to Jehovah - compare Leviticus 19:12; Numbers 30: 2; Ecclesiastes 5: 5, 6 The next vision is even more interesting. Does the destination city have no prophetic significance?     From the subtitle "Wickedness is put in its own place" we can see how, the vision that perhaps leaves Zaccaria "horrified" with all its details, makes us clearly understand that Jehovah will never tolerate any form of evil within his people and will ensure that it is quickly eliminated ". So women with stork wings who take away the ephah with wickedness in the land of Sinar, point out this aspect. Why choose Sinar and not Ninive, for example? Because "the Israelites will have thought that Sinar was the right place to relegate Evil, and Zacharias and his contemporaries Jews, in fact, could confirm that wickedness was widespread in Babylon." Also in this case the vision of the container, the wicked woman, the women with stork wings and the country of destination have no particular meaning, let alone prophetic. It must be said that if we had treated this topic only thirty years ago, perhaps someone would have started to calculate the distance between Jerusalem and Sinar to find some correspondence with some modern or past assembly or resolution. This article is certainly more conservative than those of a few years ago ** (see footnote) but is it really prudence what you see in this article or something else? Let's try to be really objective without taking a team-like attitude. Do we really think that Zacharias had seven visions in such a special time, to learn that Jehovah does not tolerate theft, falsehood and evil? Do we really think that the resurgence of true worship has nothing to do with our days? If we had started from chapter four instead of chapter five, would we not perhaps have had to move towards Revelation? - compare Zechariah 4: 2, 3 with Revelation 11: 4 Does not Zechariah chapter four also speak of the resurgence of true worship, exactly as chapters five and six do? If Zechariah and Revelation are connected, even if only partially, we should not have reflected on the identity of this "evil woman" who, incidentally, is transported to the most important city of Babylon or "to her own place"?   What is certain is that, as we have also seen in the articles titled "We are staggering like drunks?" and "Approaching the Storm", we can understand "at what distance we are" from Jehovah's discipline and also understand the reasons why He decides to discipline us by meditating on these aspects. However, all those who really pay attention to the prophetic word, have no reason to be discouraged or upset. If even the light of a certain guide should go out, we have a guide that can never disappoint us - Isaiah 40: 8 It is important and urgent more than ever, precisely in view of what is to happen, to become independent in our research and to sharpen our faculties of reasoning - Romans 12: 1 We must also realize the responsibility that some knowledge entails. We must help not those who have become critical to a party taken and with which one can not reason and even those who fail and do not intend to call into question every truth fallen from above - Matthew 15: 6 We must help those who still know how to ask themselves questions so that they do not leave the organization and do not even close their eyes to what is about to happen. We do not know to what extent God's people will be reshuffled, but until the revelation of the two clothed witnesses this will continue to be the people of God and anyway, whatever happens, let us hold fast to the Word of God which is the only truth - John 17:17 Recalling Jesus' words at the beginning of this article, and bearing in mind that we are nobody and we do not have a thousandth of his authority, we take care not to become like those who were part of God's people and who were recognized as authorities, but at the same time they could not understand "their particular time". We do not look for excuses because each of us has a Bible and the basic knowledge to deepen our arguments. We try not to be too full of us, basking in our safety thinking that others will pay. We could wake up in an unwanted reality. How would we feel if the Lord told us "Are you a hypocrite"? - compare Amos 3: 2
        Final notes * This also applies to all those sites that are said to be prophetic but only apply Jehovah's past judgments to God's people. This is also a fairly easy game. ** Just take a look at the book, no longer in publication "Pay attention to the prophecies of Daniel" where practically every number of days present in the prophetic book have been applied to assemblies, resolutions and publications.
    • Guest Nicole
      By Guest Nicole
      Do you think that her father Abraham Quintanilla risks promoting idolatry by observing “remembrances” and other shows? Isn’t he profiting from her sin by releasing her songs she made while having left “the truth” to make songs turning her into a “star” that other idolize?   Or would it be ok if he donated the money to the Watchtower society?
    • Guest Nicole
      By Guest Nicole
      When conducting a Bible Study for some time (maybe a few months)  you find out that the student is not really interested in knowing the Bible message,  just wants to enjoy friendship, what do you do? Do you politely explain the main reason of your visit or just stop visiting this person without giving an explanation? 
       
    • Guest Nicole
      By Guest Nicole
      I wish I could get an answer to this question - it's either yes or no. To become a Jehovah's Witness do you or don't you have to become baptized? I've brought this up before, my neighbor calls herself A Witness even though she hasn't been baptized.
      Submitted by: Lorraine Chloe 
    • Guest Nicole
      By Guest Nicole
      Do the JWs that teach people how to read and write count their time the same as they would if spent in field service?
    • By James Thomas Rook Jr.
      WHY DO MEN HAVE NIPPLES?
      uH .. OR IS IT "NIPPELS"?
    • By Bible Speaks
      #Question? #Answers? #WhoAmI? #JehovahGod #JesusChrist #LiveForever? #LoyalLove #Peace? #WhaleOrBigFish??#GodsKingdom #GoodNews #loveoneanother❤️

    • Guest Nicole
      By Guest Nicole
      Was Jesus a minimalist? 
    • Guest Nicole
      By Guest Nicole
      Why are JW's not allowed to use piñatas at parties? 

    • By Jack Ryan
      Should we respect religious beliefs of others?
    • By Richteresa
      Hello  Librarian,     
      If it is  possible  can you please post the  transcript for  the  video  Encouraging  inactive  ones?  
      I  would  really  appreciate it if you are  willing and able to  get  this. Thank  you 
    • By The Librarian
      Anything Bible, Biblical Archaeology, Current Events, Rumor busting, Urban Legends or JW related would be relevant.
      I enjoy helping people get answers to their questions they were always too afraid to ask or couldn't find the answer.
      If I can't answer it... I'm sure someone worldwide on here will know where the answer is.
      Need a Publication you can't find in my Master Publications List? Ask for a copy....
      Please also try using the search function on the upper right hand side first to avoid duplicates.
      Agape!
      p.s. - The reason you don't see any posts below this is because I usually split these questions off into their own threads. ICYMI earlier.
      Preguntas en español aqui por favor

    • By The Librarian
      Is Russia clamping down on Jehovah Witnesses? BBC News
      Russia’s Supreme Court has begun hearing a government request to outlaw the Jehovah’s Witnesses and declare it an extremist organisation. The justice ministry has already placed its headquarters near St Petersburg on a list of extremist groups.

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    • By Nathan Russell
      Outside of the Bible is there any archilogical or written evidence that Jesus Christ actually existed that has already not been proven to be forgeries or based on myth?
    • By Kurt
      GENEVA (4 April 2017) – Moves by the Russian Government to ban the activities of Jehovah’s Witnesses using a lawsuit brought under anti-extremism legislation have been condemned as “extremely worrying” by three United Nations human rights experts*. 
      “This lawsuit is a threat not only to Jehovah’s Witnesses, but to individual freedom in general in the Russian Federation,” the experts said. 
      “The use of counter-extremism legislation in this way to confine freedom of opinion, including religious belief, expression and association to that which is state-approved is unlawful and dangerous, and signals a dark future for all religious freedom in Russia,” they stressed. 
      The condemnation follows a lawsuit lodged at the country’s Supreme Court on 15 March to declare the Jehovah’s Witnesses Administrative Centre ‘extremist’, to liquidate it, and to ban its activity.  
      A suspension order came into effect on that date, preventing the Administrative Centre and all its local religious centres from using state and municipal news media, and from organizing and conducting assemblies, rallies and other public events. 
      A full court hearing is scheduled for 5 April and if the Supreme Court rules in favour of the authorities, it will be the first such ruling by a court declaring a registered centralized religious organization to be ‘extremist’. 
      Concerns about the counter-extremism legislation have previously been raised in a communication by the three experts to the Russian authorities on 28 July 2016.  
      The Suspension Order imposed on 15 March is the latest in a series of judicial cases and orders, including a warning sent to the organization last year referring to the ‘inadmissibility of extremist activity’. This has already led to the dissolution of several local Jehovah’s Witness organizations, raids against their premises and literature being confiscated.  
      “We urge the authorities to drop the lawsuit in compliance with their obligations under international human rights law, and to revise the counter-extremism legislation and its implementation to avoid fundamental human rights abuses,” the UN experts concluded. 
      (*) The experts: Mr. David Kaye (USA), Special Rapporteur on freedom of opinion and expression, Mr. Maina Kiai (Kenya), Special Rapporteur on freedoms of peaceful assembly and of association, and Mr. Ahmed Shaheed (the Maldives), Special Rapporteur on freedom of religion or belief.  
      The Special Rapporteurs are part of what is known as the Special Procedures of the Human Rights Council. Special Procedures, the largest body of independent experts in the UN Human Rights system, is the general name of the Council’s independent fact-finding and monitoring mechanisms that address either specific country situations or thematic issues in all parts of the world. Special Procedures’ experts work on a voluntary basis; they are not UN staff and do not receive a salary for their work. They are independent from any government or organization and serve in their individual capacity.  
      UN Human Rights, country page: Russian Federation  
      - See more at
    • By bruceq
      Russia Moves to Ban Jehovah’s Witnesses as ‘Extremist’
      By ANDREW HIGGINS APRIL 4, 2017
        Jehovah’s Witnesses gathered in a house in the village of Vorokhobino, north of Moscow, where they meet for services. CreditJames Hill for The New York Times VOROKHOBINO, Russia — A dedicated pacifist who has never even held a gun, Andrei Sivak discovered that his government considered him a dangerous extremist when he tried to change some money and the teller “suddenly looked up at me with a face full of fear.”
      His name had popped up on the exchangalee bureau’s computer system, along with those of members of Al Qaeda, the Islamic State and other militant groups responsible for shocking acts of violence.
      The only group the 43-year-old father of three has ever belonged to, however, is Jehovah’s Witnesses, a Christian denomination committed to the belief that the Bible must be taken literally, particularly its injunction “Thou shalt not kill.”
      Yet, in a throwback to the days of the Soviet Union, when Jehovah’s Witnesses were hounded as spies and malcontents by the K.G.B., the denomination is at the center of an escalating campaign by the authorities to curtail religious groups that compete with the Russian Orthodox Church and that challenge President Vladimir V. Putin’s efforts to rally the country behind traditional and often militaristic patriotic values.
      The Justice Ministry on Thursday put the headquarters of Jehovah’s Witnesses in Russia, an office complex near St. Petersburg, on a list of the bodies banned “in connection with the carrying out of extremist activities.”
      Last month, the ministry asked the Supreme Court to outlaw the religious organization and stop its more than 170,000 Russian members from spreading “extremist” texts. The court is scheduled to hear — and is likely to rule on — the case on Wednesday.
      Extremism, as defined by a law passed in 2002 but amended and expanded several times since, has become a catchall charge that can be deployed against just about anybody, as it has been against some of those involved in recent anti-corruption protests in Moscow and scores of other cities.
          The Jehovah’s Witnesses elders Vyacheslav Stepanov, 40, left, and Andrei Sivak, 43, are facing trial on charges of inciting division and hatred. CreditJames Hill for The New York Times Several students who took part in demonstrations in the Siberian city of Tomsk are now being investigated by a special anti-extremism unit while Leonid Volkov, the senior aide to the jailed protest leader Aleksei A. Navalny, said he had himself been detained last week under the extremism law.
      In the case of Jehovah’s Witnesses, the putative extremism seems to derive mostly from the group’s absolute opposition to violence, a stand that infuriated Soviet and now Russian authorities whose legitimacy rests in large part on the celebration of martial triumphs, most notably over Nazi Germany in World War II but also over rebels in Syria.
      Jehovah’s Witnesses, members of a denomination founded in the United States in the 19th century and active in Russia for more than 100 years, refuse military service, do not vote and view God as the only true leader. They shun the patriotic festivals promoted with gusto by the Kremlin, like the annual celebration of victory in 1945 and recent events to celebrate the annexation of Crimea in March 2014.
      Mr. Sivak, who says he lost his job as a physical education teacher because of his role as a Jehovah’s Witnesses elder, said he had voted for Mr. Putin in 2000, three years before joining the denomination. He added that while he has not voted since, nor has he supported anti-Kremlin activities of the sort that usually attract the attention of Russia’s post-Soviet version of the K.G.B., the Federal Security Service, or F.S.B.
      “I have absolutely no interest in politics,” he said during a recent Jehovah’s Witnesses Friday service in a wooden country house in Vorokhobino, a snow-covered village north of Moscow. Around 100 worshipers crammed into a long, chilly room under fluorescent lights to listen to readings from the Bible, sing and watch a video advising them to dress for worship as they would for a meeting with the president.
      “From the Russian state’s perspective, Jehovah’s Witnesses are completely separate,” said Geraldine Fagan, the author of “Believing in Russia — Religious Policy After Communism.” She added, “They don’t get involved in politics, but this is itself seen as a suspicious political deviation.”
      “The idea of independent and public religious activity that is completely outside the control of — and also indifferent to — the state sets all sorts of alarm bells ringing in the Orthodox Church and the security services,” she said.
      That the worldwide headquarters of Jehovah’s Witnesses is in the United States and that its publications are mostly prepared there, Ms. Fagan added, “all adds up to a big conspiracy theory” for the increasingly assertive F.S.B.
        Photo   Jehovah’s Witnesses arriving at a Friday evening service in Vorokhobino. CreditJames Hill for The New York Times For Mr. Sivak, it has added up to a long legal nightmare. His troubles began, he said, when undercover security officers posed as worshipers and secretly filmed a service where he was helping to officiate in 2010.
      Accused of “inciting hatred and disparaging the human dignity of citizens,” he was put on trial for extremism along with a second elder, Vyacheslav Stepanov, 40. The prosecutor’s case, heard by a municipal court in Sergiyev Posad, a center of the Russian Orthodox Church, produced no evidence of extremism and focused instead on the insufficient patriotism of Jehovah’s Witnesses.
      “Their disregard for the state,” a report prepared for the prosecution said, “erodes any sense of civic affiliation and promotes the destruction of national and state security.”
      In a ruling last year, the court found the two men not guilty and their ordeal seemed over — until Mr. Sivak tried to change money and was told that he had been placed on a list of “terrorists and extremists.”
      He and Mr. Stepanov now face new charges of extremism and are to appear before a regional court this month. “There is a big wave of repression breaking,” Mr. Stepanov said.
      In response to written questions, the Justice Ministry in Moscow said a yearlong review of documents at the Jehovah’s Witnesses “administrative center” near St. Petersburg had uncovered violations of a Russian law banning extremism. As a result, it added, the center should be “liquidated,” along with nearly 400 locally registered branches of the group and other structures.
      For the denomination’s leaders inside Russia, the sharp escalation in a long campaign of harassment, previously driven mostly by local officials, drew horrifying flashbacks to the Soviet era.
      Vasily Kalin, the chairman of Jehovah’s Witnesses’ Russian arm, recalled that his whole family had been deported to Siberia when he was a child. “It is sad and reprehensible that my children and grandchildren should be facing a similar fate,” he said. “Never did I expect that we would again face the threat of religious persecution in modern Russia.”
          Mr. Stepanov led a Friday evening service. CreditJames Hill for The New York Times In Russia, as in many countries, the door-to-door proselytizing of Jehovah’s Witnesses often causes irritation, and their theological idiosyncrasies disturb many mainstream Christians. The group has also been widely criticized for saying that the Bible prohibits blood transfusions. But it has never promoted violent or even peaceful political resistance.
      “I cannot imagine that anyone really thinks they are a threat,” said Alexander Verkhovsky, director of the SOVA Center for Information and Analysis, which monitors extremism in Russia. “But they are seen as a good target. They are pacifists, so they cannot be radicalized, no matter what you do to them. They can be used to send a message.”
      That message, it would seem, is that everyone needs to get with the Putin program — or risk being branded as an extremist if they display indifference, never mind hostility, to the Kremlin’s drive to make Russia a great power again.
      “A big reason they are being targeted is simply that they are an easy target,” Ms. Fagan said. “They don’t vote, so nobody is going to lose votes by attacking them.”
      Attacking Jehovah’s Witnesses also sends a signal that even the mildest deviation from the norm, if proclaimed publicly and insistently, can be punished under the anti-extremism law, which was passed after Russia’s second war in Chechnya and the Sept. 11 attacks in the United States.
      Billed as a move by Russia to join a worldwide struggle against terrorism, the law prohibited “incitement of racial, national or religious strife, and social hatred associated with violence or calls for violence.”
      But the reference to violence was later deleted, opening the way for the authorities to classify as extremist any group claiming to offer a unique, true path to religious or political salvation.
      Even the Russian Orthodox Church has sometimes fallen afoul of the law: The slogan “Orthodoxy or Death!” — a rallying cry embraced by some hard-line believers — has been banned as an illegal extremist text.
          The Cathedral of the Assumption in Sergiyev Posad. Jehovah’s Witnesses say that the local authorities have avoided giving them permission to build a Kingdom Hall in the town, and that they have to use a large house in a village 12 miles away for services. CreditJames Hill for The New York Times To help protect the Orthodox Church and other established religions, Parliament passed a law in 2015 to exempt the Bible and the Quran, as well as Jewish and Buddhist scripture, from charges of extremism based on their claims to offer the only true faith.
      The main impetus for the current crackdown, however, appears to come from the security services, not the Orthodox Church. Roman Lunkin, director of the Institute of Religion and Law, a Moscow research group, described it as “part of a broad policy of suppressing all nongovernmental organizations” that has gained particular force because of the highly centralized structure of Jehovah’s Witnesses under a worldwide leadership based in the United States.
      “They are controlled from outside Russia and this is very suspicious for our secret services,” he said. “They don’t like having an organization that they do not and cannot control.”
      Artyom Grigoryan, a former Jehovah’s Witness who used to work at the group’s Russian headquarters but who now follows the Orthodox Church, said the organization had “many positive elements,” like its ban on excessive drinking, smoking and other unhealthy habits.
      All the same, he said it deserved to be treated with suspicion. “Look at it from the view of the state,” he said. “Here is an organization that is run from America, that gets financing from abroad, and whose members don’t serve in the army and don’t vote.”
      Estranged from his parents, who are still members and view his departure as sinful, he said Jehovah’s Witnesses broke up families and “in the logic of the state, it presents a threat.”
      He added, “I am not saying this is real or not, but it needs to be checked by objective experts.”
      Mr. Sivak, now preparing for yet another trial, said he had always tried to follow the law and he respected the state, but could not put its interests above the commands of his faith.
      “They say I am a terrorist,” he said, “but all I ever wanted to do was to get people to pay attention to the Bible.”
      Correction: April 4, 2017  An earlier version of this article misstated Andrei Sivak’s age. He is 43, not 42. The error was repeated in a picture caption, which also misstated the age of Vyacheslav Stepanov. He is 40, not 39. And because of an editing error, the article also misidentified the person who said he was detained last week under Russia’s extremism law. It was Leonid Volkov, not Aleksei A. Navalny.
      NICE THAT THE EDITOR PUT A PICTURE OF ELDERLY WITNESSES THAT RUSSIA IS CALLING DANGEROUS EXTREMIST.
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