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Albert Michelson

Should JW's punish, disfellowship, or shun members who disagree with certain teachings?

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1 hour ago, John Houston said:

We fret and fawn over the the things we avidly complain about, but remember even perfect Jesus worshipped at the imperfect temple, where twice he threw out those he called robbers! He too allowed his Father to cleanse the mess. 

Yes but the WTs entire claim of being the ones chosen by god as his representatives is based on the 1914 teaching. If he never chose them then leaving this sect isn't the same as leaving the temple. 

Its more like if someone sided with kora because they believed god was using him but later realized that he wasn't being used and so stopped following him.

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2 hours ago, John Houston said:

When young Samuel was at the tabernacle, he saw the daily activities of the sons of Eli, correct? Were they appropriate in the way Jehovah wanted things done then and there? NO! But while it was allowed, the people to serve Jehovah came there and Samuel also served there, not leaving going elsewhere.

Whenever JWs make these arguments it's with the presupposition that god had chosen the WT in the first place. However the parallel falls apart when that claim is proven false. Again it would be more like someone following after the false teachers in the apostles day then realizing they weren't teaching truth and leaving their group.

Revelation 2:2 I know your deeds, and your labor and endurance, and that you cannot bear bad men, and that you put those to the test who say they are apostles, but they are not, and you found them liars.  

Rejecting those who falsely claim to be chosen by god is never condemned in scripture. 

 

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4 hours ago, JW Insider said:

These were persons who were a real danger to others, so that a way should be found to "mark" them for the entire congregation. They weren't shunned as a way to make others feel superior to them, or to use emotional blackmail to draw them back in, but just as a protection.

Nice idea, but how do you have one without the other? If you shun, it's always going to be emotional blackmail.

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There's also the fact that many disfellowshipings happen because of corrupt elders or because the organization is trying to cover up its indiscretions. 

Ive had friends who were disfellowshiped because the elders were trying to hid something they or their kids did. Barbra Anderson and her husband were disfellowshiped for coming forward about the problems with pedophiles in the organization. 

They love to say it's a protection but experience shows that not only are people not protected but they are often abused, threatened, and needlessly harassed. The pain of losing ones family has driven many to suicide. Witnesses often live a very insular life and rarely have associates outside of the group. The WT is counting on the disfellowshiping process to leave the individual with nothing, no support system and no social network. They hope that they'll fall on their face and come crawling back. Unfortunately for the WT more and more resources are being made available to those exiting. 

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1 hour ago, Noble Berean said:

Nice idea, but how do you have one without the other? If you shun, it's always going to be emotional blackmail.

I don't know.

My hope would be that the Governing Body would send out recommendations and counsel based on the fact that the Governing Body would have been soliciting and welcoming input from everyone on the subject. The counsel they would be giving back out to the congregations would be Bible-based and would offer that same reminder that we are not trying to punish the person with silence; it's not "tough love"; we are only trying to avoid the danger. We are not trying to show our moral superiority, self-righteousness, and we continue to show love wherever we can, even while "shunning" the wrong.

Being cordial, polite and even friendly in a public setting or a congregation meeting would be fine for most "marked" persons. Let's say that an extortioner got some brothers involved in a financial scheme and does not appear sorry and has not tried to pay back what was taken from them. We may rightly feel disgusted at the sin. But the "shunning" is not a total withdrawal of speech and association or even shunning from Bible discussions. In this case, it is primarily a recognition that we shun to the extent that would be appropriate so that this brother never can involve us in a financial scheme. The level and method of avoidance for other persons would be appropriate for protection from the type of sin that person is "marked" for. 

This should have almost no effect on family relationships, except to the extent necessary for protection from involvement in the sin.

And, of course, shunning and punishment should never be used for persons who have questioned a doctrine for Biblical reasons. Doctrinal questioning should be encouraged, even from the platform. It would be wonderful if questions during a meeting were more like:

  • "And can anyone see why this teaching might be difficult to explain to someone at the door?"
  • "Would someone like to offer a Biblical reason why this proposed doctrine might not be correct?"
  • "The talk this Sunday will be 30 minutes based on the new outlines: Brother Smithsonian will speak to us for 15 minutes about why the 'little flock' and 'other sheep' could refer to spiritual Israel and spiritual Gentiles. Then Brother Johnsonian will speak to us for 15 minutes about why the 'little flock' and 'other sheep' could refer to literal Israel and  literal Gentiles. So we'll want to put on our thinking caps for that one."

 

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17 minutes ago, JW Insider said:

The counsel they would be giving back out to the congregations would be Bible-based

Hum I highly doubt that. Their opinions are often inventions based on a perceived need. 

 

17 minutes ago, JW Insider said:

The level and method of avoidance for other persons would be appropriate for protection from the type of sin that person is "marked" for. 

This is called getting a bad reputation and doesn't require a mandate from 3 elders who've held a secret meeting and decided how everyone else is to feel about and act towards an individual.

 

17 minutes ago, JW Insider said:

"Would someone like to offer a Biblical reason why this proposed doctrine might not be correct?"

I used to think that way too. I guess you're still under the impression that the organization can be reformed. Well I won't say it's impossible but you're most likely going to be waiting the rest of your life. I to seek reform however I believe that the best way to achieve it is to inform the public and those within the organization. Even if we could get things back to pre 1981 (before disassociation was declared a shunning offense) that would be a step in the right direction. 

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23 hours ago, Albert Michelson said:

And yet so many have lost their families for doing that very thing.

Yes, it's happened, although I hope it's a lot less than you imply. It's difficult to imagine a single congregation or even a single circuit that has had many such ones, at least recently.

I have an uncle who is a Circuit Overseer, and he says that in early 1990's all Circuit Overseers (through the District Overseers) were given instructions to see that congregations did not seek out apostates to discipline them, because of "morale" issues. Even if apostates left the congregation and were seen actively picketing the conventions, they were not to make an issue of it. The apostate was already making it clear they were not a JW, so it could safely be ignored. I never verified this. Actually, I tried to verify it and it was denied by someone who should have known. If anyone knows long-time circuit overseers, or anyone who was in that position around 90-92 I'd like to know more about this. Brother Jackson seemed to imply that this was possible based on his testimony.

 

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3 minutes ago, Albert Michelson said:

Hum I highly doubt that. Their opinions are often inventions based on a perceived need. 

Yes, sometimes. But this part was only meant to be partially hypothetical.

In spite of mistakes, I have never seen a directive where there is not an attempt -- usually successful, imo, to make it Bible-based. I think that the problems when this has failed has been a lack of input. Not that plenty of good input wasn't available. Before 1978, Bethel elders and "table heads" were full of ideas that they were sharing with other Bethelites. The Writing Department was full of a lot of intellectual honesty. I think the Aid Book project probably contributed to a new appreciation for the fact that so many of these commentaries from Christendom had remained very valuable resources for 100, 200 and even up to nearly 300 years. And yet if someone were to go looking carefully through our own Revelation and Ezekiel commentary from only 60 years earlier, we suspected him of being an apostate -- just for reading our own publications.

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3 minutes ago, JW Insider said:

Yes, it's happened, although I hope it's a lot less than you imply

I honestly don't know what the percentages are but I'd love to find out. I do know that the number of ones who leave or are disfellowshiped for other reasons and then learn the truth about "the truth" and cannot in good conscience return is skyrocketing. 

7 minutes ago, JW Insider said:

Even if apostates left the congregation and were seen actively picketing the conventions, they were not to make an issue of it.

Im sure it depends on who you ask. 

Ive already posted this letter but I'll post it one more time

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12 minutes ago, Albert Michelson said:

This is called getting a bad reputation and doesn't require a mandate from 3 elders who've held a secret meeting and decided how everyone else is to feel about and act towards an individual.

I used the word "marked" because there is no term for "disfellowshipping" in the Scriptures. So I assume that a level similar to our "disfellowshipping" existed for extreme cases, but it must have still fallen under the category of "marking" which obviously was just a reputational warning to protect the congregation. A person can be met with in private, but if there needs to be a public marking or judgment of that person, then the reasons should be as clear as necessary to the congregation. I'm all for transparency.

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14 minutes ago, JW Insider said:

The Writing Department was full of a lot of intellectual honesty.

I disagree but I will say that at that time at least they could be excused for not knowing that the central doctrine regarding god selecting their religion was false. 

 

14 minutes ago, JW Insider said:

I think the Aid Book project probably contributed to a new appreciation for the fact that so many of these commentaries from Christendom had remained very valuable resources for 100, 200 and even up to nearly 300 years. And yet if someone were to go looking carefully through our own Revelation and Ezekiel commentary from only 60 years earlier, we suspected him of being an apostate -- just for reading our own publications.

Now you sound like Ray Franz, which is not a bad thing.

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7 minutes ago, JW Insider said:

I used the word "marked" because there is no term for "disfellowshipping" in the Scriptures. So I assume that a level similar to our "disfellowshipping" existed for extreme cases, but it must have still fallen under the category of "marking" which obviously was just a reputational warning to protect the congregation. A person can be met with in private, but if there needs to be a public marking or judgment of that person, then the reasons should be as clear as necessary to the congregation. I'm all for transparency.

I do not personally believe that the first century Christians had an equivalent to disfellowshiping. But again you're admitting that there is a deviation from scripture and yet for some reason you see this as acceptable or at least tolerable. Once again I'd ask what your personal cut off is. When does it become to much?

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36 minutes ago, Albert Michelson said:

Ive already posted this letter but I'll post it one more time

That letter was from 1980 when Bethel held what Bethelites themselves (of good reputation and in good standing) were calling "Inquisitions" and "witch hunts." Brother Schroeder was out for the head of Ray Franz and used his bully pulpit at a couple of Bethel elders meetings to whip up a frenzy of whatever would be the Bethel equivalent of McCarthyism, Loyalism, Jingoism, etc. He worked fast and most of it was secret. He was protecting himself at the same time and he knew it. When it was all over he was not well liked, even though a lot of other people had been maneuvered into doing his dirty work.

But I don't think that the feeling (or lack of it) in this particular letter you posted, was common even 5 years later. (The only exception I would be sure of by that point was Fred Franz, who was all for handling apostasy cases anywhere they might show up, but he was becoming much less active.) Schroeder himself softened after Ray Franz was finally out completely. (Although I'm sure he was disappointed that he could only get him on a couple counts of speaking with a disfellowshipped person.) Schroeder had hoped for a couple things to come out of those moves against Ray Franz, and things actually went the other way for him. I say these things because Brother Schroeder was a very good friend of mine. He was also my overseer at Bethel for research assignments, even for a couple years after I had left Bethel and lived in New York. For several people, this particular bit of information makes me no longer anonymous, and I understand that this creates a very small danger of repercussions. But it is very, very slight compared to what it would have been in the early 1980's. At that time, however, I would not have said anything about doctrinal issues or anything about Schroeder's apparent motives. 

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13 minutes ago, JW Insider said:

He worked fast and most of it was secret.

It usually is when it comes to these meetings. That's part of the reason elders can disfellowship someone for basically nothing. No one is privied to the secret elders meetings and judicial hearings. As long as at lest two elders are on board you can be disfellowshiped for anything, even if it's to shut you up.

 

13 minutes ago, JW Insider said:

That letter was from 1980

As far as I know it's still in force but I may be wrong.

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16 minutes ago, JW Insider said:

He worked fast and most of it was secret. He was protecting himself at the same time and he knew it. When it was all over he was not well liked, even though a lot of other people had been maneuvered into doing his dirty work.

So you're well aware of how the system is abused. That brings me to my next point. Witnesses are also required to respect the disfellowshiping decision even if they know it was unjustly handled and even if they know the person is innocent.

 

"Willfull, continued, unnecessary association with disfellowshiped nonrelatives dispite repeated council."

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4 minutes ago, Nana Fofana said:

So far, to me, 1914 is not a burden at all, though.  Because I think it's correct, and so far the more I've looked into it, the more correct it has continued to appear to me.

 

    Hello guest!

Look harder.

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Albert, you make altogether too many statements complaining of sinister intentions at Witness headquarters. It borders on paranoia. To me, it indicates you have spent too much time hanging out with the wrong type of people and drinking in their wisdom.

3 hours ago, Albert Michelson said:

Um freedom and intellectual honesty. 

No. Please. Don't go there. We are, to a great degree, who we hang out with. It's intellectually flattering to think otherwise. But it's also nonsense. That is why some god-awful style will come along and within 5 years we're all wearing it, wondering how we ever thought those geeky styles of yesteryear did anything for us. We run with the herd not just on small things like styles, but on all things. It's well to give thought to who you hang out with.

 

3 hours ago, Albert Michelson said:

Um freedom

It would be nice if you didn't go there, either. For the sake of the piddling little freedoms that you gain by leaving the Witness faith, none of which ultimately amounts to a hill of beans, you throw away freedoms which are truly significant.

I'll concede, though, that if you were baptized young and later left on bad terms and you find yourself shunned by family because of it, that is not a good place to be. I can empathize with that. Having said that, it is entirely possible for a person baptized young who later decides to leave to do so without triggering shunning. I know several who have done it. Fade. Drift away. Or just tell a few that you don't want to do it anymore. There are some anti-Witness factions who encourage such ones to go out with a splash - tell them all off at the Kingdom Hall! By following their advice, you virtually assure that you will be shunned. Few governments will smilingly see their citizens declare them illegitimate, and it is no different in Jehovah's organization, which is often called a 'nation,' and is more of a nation in many respects than political nations on the globe.

I don't want to get into here whether it should be that way. The point is, it is. Thus, shunning is easily avoidable. One wonders why any outfit - often atheists do this - would recommend such a confrontation, knowing the disruption it will bring on a family. Of course, the lack of 'shunning' doesn't mean palling around as usual, and one who leaves often finds they lose all their Witness friends anyway, and even family, though not in so formal away.

The Witness faith is like the man who found the pearl of high value, and sold everything he had to secure it. Most people today would consider this fellow a fanatic. Jesus indicated his was the example to follow. So if you leave the faith, you'll find most Witnessed lose interest in hanging out with you. Like in most things, people seek out common interests. Just look how many families have been divided over Trump and Hillary. Do you really think that when Kathy Griffin holds aloft the mock, bloodied head of the President, her Republican dad (if he is) says: "that's my lass! She speaks her mind! It won't affect Thanksgiving dinner, though."?

Is it a good idea to allow Witness kids to be baptized at 10? It's a good thing for those who will remain. It's a bad thing for those who will afterwards decide to leave (with a bang). If only you could tell who was who in advance. Contrary to your dark accusation that JWs rope them in as young as possible so as to hold them hostage (sheesh) my son wanted baptism at age 10 and the elders told him to wait. His feelings were hurt over it, but he was baptized the next year. If you find something good, it is never considered wrong to 'dedicate' yourself to it at a young age. Successful businesspeople and even entertainers do that, to say nothing of athletes. I've never heard one criticized for it.

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1 hour ago, JW Insider said:

It would be wonderful if questions during a meeting were more like:

  • ...
  • "Would someone like to offer a Biblical reason why this proposed doctrine might not be correct?"

If you don't mind, I want to go home after two hours. I don't want each meeting to be like a discussion of the WorldNewsMedia forum.

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15 minutes ago, TrueTomHarley said:

shunning is easily avoidable.

 It is possible but I wouldn't say it's easily avoidable.  And again as I've stated many times it requires one to essentially take a vow of silence and live in perpetual fear.

 

15 minutes ago, TrueTomHarley said:

The Witness faith is like the man who found the pearl of high value, and sold everything he had to secure it.

 I would say that it's more like the Pharisees who encourage their followers to cast the followers of Jesus out of the synagogues.  It's more a matter of information control and uniformity then anything else.

 

15 minutes ago, TrueTomHarley said:

Contrary to your dark accusation that JWs rope them in as young as possible so as to hold them hostage (sheesh) my son wanted baptism at age 10 and the elders told him to wait. His feelings were hurt over it, but he was baptized the next year.

 And yet he was raised without any opportunity to hear or see contrary evidence.  I wanted to get baptized at 10 as well because that's all I knew.  But this is a lifelong commitment that they are never allowed to retract.  And yes it is the organizations goal to get these kids young and to entrap them.  As I said before if they can do that then they can ensure that they will either stay in or that they'll keep their mouths shut if they leave.  The latter prospect seems to be what you are advocating for and I find it ironic considering the circumstances.  As I have already pointed out witnesses regularly go to peoples homes and encourage them to leave their faith systems and join their's.  They encourage them to speak out against the false teachings of their former religions and yet for a Jehovah's Witness to do this very thing is met with cruelty.

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      Besides, for most of the years of teaching this doctrine, we have had the flexibility of extending the "1914 generation" from a possible 40 years, up to 70, then 75, then 80 years. And this has been applied to teenagers who saw 1914, 10-year-olds who saw 1914, then even newborns who saw 1914. With every one of these options already tried and stretched to their limits, we finally were forced to convert the meaning of generation from its most common meanings and give it a new "strained" meaning that has no other Biblical parallel. (See Exodus 1:6; Matthew 1:17; 16:4; 23:36; Luke 11:50)
      But that flexibility is still seen as the last reason for hope that the Watch Tower Society might have still been correct in hanging on to 1914. Since the Bible says that a lifespan is 70 or 80 years and 1914 + 80 = 1994, the "generation" doctrine in its original form (1943) could remain stable until about 1994. Of course, a lifespan could technically reach to 120 years or more, and Gen 6:3 even gives vague support to the idea that the "1914 generation" could last 120 years, until 2034.
      The current alternative solution is to make the generation out of the length of two lifespans, which technically could be double 120 years, or nearly 240 years from 1914. That would have had the potential to reach to the year 2154 (1914+240) except for the caveat that it can, by its new definition, only refer to anointed persons who discerned the sign in 1914 and whose lives overlapped (technically, by as little as one second) with the lifespan of another anointed person representing the second group. If persons from each group don't really discern their own "anointing" until age 20, for example, this would effectively remove 40 years from the overall maximum. 1914+120-20+120-20 = 2114. We could also assume a possible lifespan of more than 120 years, but otherwise, the new two-lifespan generation could potentially make the generation last 200 years. This "technical maximum" is not promoted currently, because for now we look at examples like Fred Franz who was part of that original generation already anointed and who saw the sign, and the typical example of an anointed brother who was apparently "anointed" prior to Franz' death in 1992 would be someone like Governing Body member, Brother Sanderson, who was born in 1965, baptized in 1975, and was already a "special pioneer" in 1991. His is currently 52.
      However, the generation problem is just one more problem now which we can add onto the list of all the other points that make up the 1914 doctrine. Here are several points related to 1914 that appear problematic from a Scriptural point of view:
      All evidence shows the 1914 date is wrong when trying to base it on the destruction of Jerusalem. (Daniel 1:1; 2 Chron 36:1-22; Jer 25:8-12; Zech 1:12, 7:4; Ezra 3:10-13) Paul said that Jesus sat at God's right hand in the first century and that he already began ruling as king at that time. (1 Cor 15:25) Jesus said not to be fooled by the idea that wars and rumors of wars would be the start of a "sign" (Matt 24:4,5) Jesus said that the "parousia" would be as visible as lightning (Matt 24:27). He spoke against people who might say he had returned but was currently not visible. (Matt 24:23-26) Jesus said that his "parousia" would come as a surprise to the faithful, not that they would discern the time of the parousia decades in advance. (Matt 24:36-42) Jesus said that the kingdom would not be indicated by "signs" (Luke 17:20, almost any translation except NWT in this case) The "synteleia" (end of all things together) refers to a concluding event, not an extended period of time (Matt 28:20) Jesus was already called ruler, King and even "King of Kings" in the first century. (1 Tim 6:15, Heb 7:2,17; Rev 1:5; 17:14) Wicked, beastly King Nebuchadnezzar's insanity and humiliation does not represent Jesus as the "lowliest one of mankind." (Heb 1:5,6; 2:10,11; Daniel 4:23-25; cf. Heb 2:7; 1 Pet 3:17,18) The demise of a Gentile kingdom cannot rightly represent the time of the rise of the Gentile kingdoms (Daniel 4:26,27) The Gentile kings did not meet their demise in 1914. (Rev 2:25,26) The time assigned to the Gentile Times that Jesus spoke about in Luke 21:24 is already given as 3.5 times, not 7 times (Revelation 11:2,3) The Devil was already brought down from "heaven" in the first century. (1 John 2:14,15; 1 Pet 5:8; Luke 10:18; Heb 2:14) The Bible says that the "last days" began in the first century. (Acts 2:14-20; 2 Tim 3:1-17; 1 Peter 3:3-5; Heb 1:2, almost any translation except NWT in this case.)
    • By Noble Berean
      "Then, indeed, the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord Jesus will do away with by the spirit of his mouth and bring to nothing by the manifestation of his presence" (2 Thessalonians 2:8).
      I understand that Jehovah's Witnesses believe Jesus Christ presence began back in 1914. I also understand that JWs believe the clergy of Christendom represent the Man of Lawlessness. However, if that is the case, why have the clergy thrived since 1914? Shouldn't they be brought to "...nothing by the manifestation of his presence"?
    • By JW Insider
      A recent topic about whether the Watchtower view of 607 BCE is SCRIPTURALLY supported is linked below. This new topic should provide a better place to discuss the SECULAR evidence. I also think it would be useful to discuss the methodology that the Watch Tower Society has historically used to treat this evidence.
      I would hope that we can do this without so much side discussions of unrelated topics. To avoid another topic that goes on for 30+ pages where only half of them were on-topic, I would suggest that if we get enough off-topic posts, we merely move them to another more appropriate topic.
      The link to the most recent topic on a similar subject is here:


       
    • By JW Insider
      Why another topic about 1914 and 607?
      Because we could use a topic where we can all agree a little more easily. Seriously. In this topic, we don't need to worry about whether 607 is correct, or 1914 is correct. No one needs to say why it does or doesn't make sense to them. Let's just see if we can review the possible and probable sources that were influential, and ultimately resulted in 607 and 1914 being accepted as a Bible-based fulfillment of prophecy.
      No one needs to jump from another thread about 607 and Biblical evidence over to this one. In fact, I just read a couple of books last night for the first time, and I had some questions that I couldn't find an answer to, and hoped that someone from that other thread, or anyone really, might have run across the resources that might have answered the questions. I'm reading one more book first, and don't think I'll finish it tonight, so consider this topic to be kind of a placeholder for a couple days.
      So this is the purpose of the three current threads:
      https://www.theworldnewsmedia.org/topic/5510-607-bce-is-it-biblically-supported/ a place to discuss mostly the Scriptural evidence for or against the 607 portion of the 1914 doctrine. https://www.theworldnewsmedia.org/topic/51655-607-bce-is-there-any-secular-support-for-the-watch-towers-view/ a place to discuss mostly the Secular evidence for or against the 607 portion of the 1914 doctrine. And this current one: a place to discuss the sources that were influential in the WTS accepting the 607 date as part of the 1914 doctrine. One place to start is with a couple sentences in the "Proclaimers" book (next post). I personally intend to avoid a certain book by COJ for this topic, to avoid unnecessary controversy, although anyone should feel free to use any resources from anywhere they wish, as long as it appears to be a statement of fact. Again, this is not about questioning the correctness of the doctrine.
    • By The Librarian
      Master Chronological List > 1914
      Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.  pointed to 1914 as the end of the "Gentile Times" or "The Appointed Times of the Nations."

      Subsequent President of the  Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.   Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.  established 1914 as the date of "Christ's Invisible Return" and crowning as King of  Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.   Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.  which had been previously believed to be 1878. Hence, Jehovah's heavenly Kingdom is established.

      Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.  teach that Satan and his demons were cast down to earth from heaven after October 1, 1914 at which point the end times began.

      From 1914 C.E. to the early part of 1918 C.E. or 1,260 days Jehovah's people preached a "sackcloth" message concerning Christendom and the world, in fulfillment of Revelation 11:3, 4. See re pgs. 164-7 pars. 10-18, also see yw pgs. 264-307, also bf pg. 592.

      [KING OF THE NORTH is now Germany, the KING OF THE SOUTH is the alliance between Great Britian and the United States of America, see Daniel 11:27-29], Archduke Francis Ferdinand and his wife, Countess Sophie Chotek, duchess of Hohenberg were assassinated on June 28th in Sarajevo, Bosnia, (now in Bosnia and Herzegovina), by a Serb nationalist. This action precipitated World War I. 
       
      On October 2, 1914, Jesus took the throne. Shortly thereafter, a war in heaven broke out wherein Satan and his demons were cast from the heavens. Satan then became so enraged that he began to wreak havoc upon the earth. One of the first things he did was to start the Great War (WWI). So WWI must have started a few days after October 2, 1914.
       
      “World War I set the violent twentieth century in motion. It was the first use of chemical weapons; the first mass bombardment of civilians from the sky; the century’s first genocide.” So begins the 1996 PBS series The Great War and the Shaping of the Twentieth Century.


      The war’s horrendous prosecution and unsatisfactory end were made even worse by the Versailles Peace Conference, a conclave which created the false peace that only allowed the combatants to rearm and proceed to a second conflict which was even more destructive than the first one. World War II merely took up the Great War’s unfinished business. Indeed many historians call both conflicts Europe’s “Second Thirty Years’ War.”

      The First World War led to the birth of the first communist dictatorship. The world flirted with nuclear destruction as that dictatorship engaged in a murderous rivalry with its erstwhile allies. When the USSR finally imploded, some of the splinter states which emerged from its ruins fell to either fighting among themselves or suffering internecine bloodletting. And the problems elsewhere in southwest Asia as well as the Middle East can be traced to hatreds fostered by European colonialism which the Great War only intensified.

      The world we have today had its birth pangs in World War I. It was Austria-Hungary’s invasion of Serbia on 28 July 1914 that caused a myriad of dominoes to fall—and they are continuing to tumble even now.


      The war shattered an entire world order. In 1914, sixty percent of the world's population lived under the rule of kingdoms or empires. Today less than ten percent do so. The only important royal dynasty to survive the war was the House of Windsor and that was not without challenge. The fragmentation of these empires led to the rise of independent states which continues down to this day as the doctrine of "self-determination", promulgated by Wilson at Versailles, continues to govern many movements in our time.

      But what makes the Great War different from its predecessors is that it was the first fought in all four quarters of the globe and by blocs of nations as opposed to just a few. Its carnage also was unmatched in previous world history. Nobody knows how many actually died although estamates range from fourteen to twenty million. Among its aftershocks were the Spanish Flu, the pandemic that killed more people than the war itself, and widespread famine. So to say that the Great War was not much different from earlier ones entirely misses the point,
       
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      July 28, 1914. Austria-Hungary declares war on Serbia. August 1, 1914. Germany Declares War on Russia. August 3, 1914. Germany declares war on France. August 4, 1914. Britain declares war on Germany. August 6, 1914. Austria declares war on Russia. April 6, 1917 - The United States declares war on Germany.
      Depiction from the 
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      Older depiction from the 1982 book "
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      Related Links and Questions
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      1914-2014 - One Hundred Years of Kingdom Rule!

      Where did you find the theme text for 1914?

      Jesus said that "This generation will not pass away until all these things occur." Did he mean the generation that saw saw World War 1 in 1914?

      What shows that Christ became King in 1914?

      When Jesus began ruling as King in 1914, was that the start of the Millennial reign of the Messianic Kingdom?

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      Watchtower Publications from 1914
      YearText: “Be strong and courageous.” Joshua 1:9
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      Berean Studies on The New Creation - C.T. Russell 
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      Return to the 
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      Watchtower_May_15_1984_pages_1_to_7.pdf
      Previous Watchtower Publications quotations concerning 1914
      “Some persons living A.D. 1914 when the series of foretold events began will also be living when the series ends with Armageddon.” - The Watchtower, September 1, 1952, p. 543

      THE TRAIN ILLUSTRATION - Awake!, October 8, 1968, p. 5

      “The fact that fifty-four years of the period called the ‘last days’ have already gone by is highly significant. It means that only a few years, at most, remain before the corrupt system of things dominating the earth is destroyed by God...Jesus was obviously speaking about those who were old enough to witness with understanding what took place when the ‘last days’ began. Jesus was saying that some of those persons who were alive at the appearance of the ‘sign of the last days’ would still be alive when God brought this system to its end.” - Awake!, October 8, 1968, p. 13


      “But there are people still living who were alive in 1914 and saw what was happening then and who were old enough that they still remember those events. This generation is getting up in years now. A great number of them have already passed away in death. Yet Jesus very pointedly said: ‘This generation will by no means pass away until all these things occur.’ Some of them will still be alive to see the end of this wicked system. This means that only a short time is left before the end comes!” -  Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.

      “However, there are people still living who were alive in 1914 and saw what was happening then and who were old enough that they still remember those events. This generation is getting up in years now. A great number of them have already passed away in death. Yet Jesus very pointedly said: ‘This generation will by no means pass away until all these things occur.’ Some of them will still be alive to see the end of this wicked system. This means that only a short time is left before the end comes!” - The Watchtower, February 15, 1969, p. 101

      “Men of this world offer you nothing stable, nothing sure. Their promises and predictions of better things have failed time and again. Why let yourself be carried along with them in a steadily downward course to ultimate disaster due to rejecting God’s will? God’s prophetic Word has not failed. Time has confirmed its truthfulness, its unerring accuracy. The generation that saw the start of the time of distress that began in 1914 is now dwindling in numbers. Before it passes off the scene the prophesied ‘great tribulation’ will come. You can be among the joyful survivors, experience deliverance from a world system that has proved oppressive, unworkable and death dealing.” - The Watchtower, February 1, 1971, p. 69

      “And the remaining ones of that generation of 1914 are still talking about it. Some of them will be talking about it right down to the time when the ‘great tribulation’ wipes Satan’s wicked system of things off the face of our globe. For Jesus Christ himself assures us: ‘Truly I say to you that this generation [the generation that saw the ‘beginning of pangs of distress’ in 1914] will by no means pass away [completely] until all these things occur. Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will by no means pass away.’--Matthew 24:3,8,34,35.” - The Watchtower, May 1, 1982, p. 15

      “After drawing attention to the many things that have marked the period from 1914 onward, Jesus said: ‘This generation will by no means pass away until all these things [including the end of this system] occur.’ (Matthew 24:34,14) Which generation did Jesus mean? He meant the generation of people who were living in 1914. Those persons yet remaining of that generation are now very old. However, some of them will still be alive to see the end of this wicked system. So of this we can be certain: Shortly now there will be a sudden end to all wickedness and wicked people at Armageddon. Some of the generation living in 1914 will see the end of the system of things and survive it.” -  Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.

      ILLUSTRATION: “1914 The Generation That Will Not Pass Away” - The Watchtower, May 15, 1984, title page

      “If Jesus used ‘generation’ in that sense and we apply it to 1914, then the babies of that generation are now 70 years old or older. And others alive in 1914 are in their 80’s or 90’s, a few even having reached a hundred. There are still many millions of that generation alive. Some of them ‘will by no means pass away until all things occur.’ --Luke 21:32” - The Watchtower, May 15, 1984, p. 5

      “From a purely human viewpoint, it could appear that these developments could hardly take place before the generation of 1914 disappears from the scene. But fulfillment of all the foretold events affecting the generation of 1914 does not depend on comparatively slow human action. Jehovah’s prophetic word through Christ Jesus is: ‘This generation [of 1914] will by no means pass away until all things occur.’ (Luke 21:32) And Jehovah, who is the source of inspired and unfailing prophecy, will bring about the fulfillment of his Son’s words in a relatively short time.--Isaiah 46:9,10; 55:10,11.”
      - The Watchtower, May 15, 1984, pp. 6-7

      “Today, a small percentage of mankind can still recall the dramatic events of 1914. Will that elderly generation pass away before God saves the earth from ruin? Not according to Bible prophecy. ‘When you see all these things,’ Jesus promised, ‘know that he is near at the doors. Truly I say to you that this generation will by no means pass away until all these things occur.’--Matthew 24:33,34” - The Watchtower, May 1, 1992, p. 3

      “Most important, this magazine builds confidence in the Creator’s promise of a peaceful and secure new world before the generation that saw the events of 1914 passes away.” - Awake!, October 22, 1995, p. 4


      “Eager to see the end of this evil system, Jehovah’s people have at times speculated about the time when the ‘great tribulation’ would break out, even tying this to calculations of what is the lifetime of a generation since 1914. However, we ‘bring a heart of wisdom in,’ not by speculating about how many years or days make up a generation, but by thinking about how we ‘count our days’ in bringing joyful praise to Jehovah. (Psalm 90:12) Rather than provide a rule for measuring time, the term ‘generation’ as used by Jesus refers principally to contemporary people of a certain historical period, with their identifying characteristics.” - The Watchtower, November 1, 1995, p. 17


      “Therefore, in the final fulfillment of Jesus’ prophecy today, ‘this generation’ apparently refers to the peoples of earth who see the sign of Christ’s presence but fail to mend their ways...Does our more precise viewpoint on ‘this generation’ mean that Armageddon is further away than we had thought? Not at all! Though we at no time have known the ‘day and hour,’ Jehovah God has always known it, and he does not change.” - The Watchtower, November 1, 1995, pp. 19-20

      “Most important, this magazine builds confidence in the Creator’s promise of a peaceful and secure new world that is about to replace the present wicked, lawless system of things.” - Awake!, November 8, 1995, p. 4
       
      One hundred years on from the Great War

       
    • By Jack Ryan
      If the love you have for your children is predicated on their beliefs, you don't love your children you love YOUR beliefs
    • By Jack Ryan
      In previous decades, when someone was disfellowshipped, they were told their time would be 6 months. Now it’s a full year?
      Why did that change from 6 mo to a year? and are they getting more ppl to come back with the increased time? With the less members staying in the org, you would think they want to lower the “jail time “
      Also are there any other religions that gives you months or years of time out, if you commit a sin, even if you actually want to come back?
      Also any former elders here? Why is there a standard set time for everyone? And why can they reject someone’s letter who wants to come back? Don’t they need more members ?
    • By Jack Ryan
      Jehovah's Witness Organization Redefines Shunning to Falsely.mp4
      Every JW visiting this page should MORALLY comment below and publicly state that this JW Lawyer is LYING through his teeth to the Canadian Supreme Court.
      If you don't, YOU participate in this gross sin. Because you ALL KNOW this is a false statement.
      Remember as well that this JW Lawyer is also an Officer of the Court.
      What the courts do not know is that JW's consider outright lying in court a part of "theocratic warfare" just like Muslims do. So it is a virtue to them.

      Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. SMH.
      Can you spell P-E-R-J-U-R-Y?
    • By Jack Ryan
      "Sunday, December 30
      Asa’s heart was complete with Jehovah all his life.—1 Ki. 15:14.
      Each of us can examine his heart to see if it is fully devoted to God. Ask yourself, ‘Am I determined to please Jehovah, to defend true worship, and to protect his people from any corrupting influence?’ For example, what if someone close to you has to be disfellowshipped? Would you take decisive action by ceasing to associate with that person? What would your heart move you to do? Like Asa, you can show that you have a complete heart by fully relying on God when you are faced with opposition, even some that may seem insurmountable. You may be teased or ridiculed at school for taking a stand as one of Jehovah’s Witnesses. Or colleagues at work may taunt you for taking days off for spiritual activities or for not often working overtime. In such situations, pray to God, just as Asa did. (2 Chron. 14:11) Remain firm for what you know is right and wise. Remember that God strengthened and helped Asa, and He will strengthen you.
      w17.03 3:6-8 "

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    • By Jack Ryan
      This was a case where in June 1987, the United States Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit upheld the Witnesses' right to shun those who fail to live by the group's standards and doctrines, upholding the ruling of a lower court.

      Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. Has there been any cases after this, where DF cases went to court? Have there been cases in other countries were DF decisions were challenged and reversed?
    • By James Thomas Rook Jr.
      Here in the United States we have Cable TV with such things as "History Channel", "Discovery Channel", "Scifi Channel", and "A&E" the "Arts and Entertainment Channel".  Apparently around November 13 of this year they had a famous (?) TV star, Leah Remini,  who had been a Scientologist since she was eight years old turn Apostate, and she has done at least two TV seasons exposing the ills of the Church of Scientology", do an Expose' of Jehovah's Witnesses.
      I do not watch TV as a rule, and missed it, and I spent a few days looking for it and trying to download a copy.  It was not on YouTube, but I did find it under "Aftermath Jehovah's Witnesses" on the Russian equivalent of YouTube, "Rutube.ru". It would not download with my usual download software, so I had to find a free screen capture software, which took about four hours to get the settings just right, and I was able to download the two hour program from my monitor, as it was playing.
      Therefore, I watched the TV program three times, as I experimented with the settings to get a good screen copy to my hard drive..
      I could see both sides of the program viewpoints presented, and did not find us to be misrepresented in any way whatsoever ... but if there was EVER a clear example of the Law of Unintended Consequences, the horror the Governing Body has caused in disfellowshipping the way that it is currently done ... by ripping families apart, and creating  irreparable damage that can never be corrected with reinstatement, was chilling, and puts us in the same class as Scientologists ... which completely disregarding the horror and hardsip, and cruelty without any mercy whatsoever it creates locally, shames Jehovah's Name and Reputation over the whole planet.
      I don't believe there is anything a local Jehovah's Witness could do ... rob a bank ... have a harem ... have sex with horses ... etc., ad nauseum ... that would besmirch Jehovah's name and reputation globally as much as our current blatantly cruel public policies of destroying whole families for the sins of one person.
      I am very glad to have the education I have to know that the TRUTH is still the truth .... even though the 85% drivel has rotted and fermented into rotten sewage.
      Most JWs do NOT have this educational advantage ... so their lives are permanently destroyed.
      I don't expect much from people, and almost NOTHING from groups of people .... so for me, like getting one of those great salads at the Olive Garden Restaurant, and finding a big chunk of solid sewage in it ... I hold my nose, and eat around it.
      This TV Special is global news .... what could I possibly say to the average person that would clear the Name of God, that the Governing Body of Jehovah's Witnesses, NOT THE TELEVISION PROGRAM, has corrupted by its Pharisaic policies that have real world consequences?
      The exact same thing happened in ancient Israel, and a system that God blessed and supported for a thousand years and more was abandoned by God.
      The exact same thing.
       
       
       
       
    • By James Thomas Rook Jr.
      CAN A PERSON ... OR SHOULD A PERSON . BE DISFELLOWSHIPPED IN ABSTENSIA?
      Here is the situation .....  a person REPORTED to be one of Jehovah's Witnesses is accused, and NOT convicted ( ... because he is a fugitive from Justice ...) .....

      Apparently he was at one time in a "Position Of Authority", which possibly alludes to his being an  "Elder", and he may have relocated to another State or even another Country. Possibly using an alias.
      The  various Congregation Elders cannot find him, the Society cannot find him, and the U.S. Marshal's Service cannot find him.
      Not having any indication to the contrary ... at least from the information given in the pseudo-Wanted Poster shown above, he is possibly still officially one of Jehovah's Witnesses.
      Whether he is or not, his bad example raises an interesting  aspect of trying to figure out how the disfellowshipping "system" protocol actually works.
      Can any of the Congregations  he went to disfellowship him without his being present  to answer charges ?
      ... and SHOULD he be?
       
    • By James Thomas Rook Jr.
      DO  WE STILL  DISFELLOWSHIP  THE  MENTALLY  ILL ?
      I was a teenager in the 60's,  and I had a good friend that on Scout camping trips I introduced to the Truth, and I was there in NYC at Yankee Stadium when he was baptized as one of Jehovah's Witness. He was a true "straight arrow", and pioneered, always dressed immaculately, and eventually over the years became an Elder.
      One night, at an Elder's Meeting, he announced to the other Elders that he was Jesus Christ, and that his mother was the virgin Mary, and of course he was disfellowshipped.
      He spent several years in private mental institutions until his insurance money ran out, then in a State institution for several years.
      He called me up, and told me the story, and I told him I was the Great Turtleman, and every November, before I hibernated, I rose from the swamp and gave toys to all the good little boys and girls.  I was just pulling his leg, but he was dead serious.
      Later, he was in England, while his wife was trying without success to get him to take his medications, and fell over a balcony at Heathrow Airport and got killed.
      DO  WE STILL  DISFELLOWSHIP  THE  MENTALLY  ILL ?
       
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