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18 hours ago, Anna said:

It is to be noted that both Rolf Furuli and Gerard Gertroux are both Jehovah's Witnesses.

Most (perhaps all?) of the known people associated with the sponsor of the video (Reibling Foundation) are Witnesses, too. If they are trying to hide this fact they have not done a good job. Obviously, the language and expressions in the video also indicates that it is from Witnesses.

There are some huge logical gaffes in the video.

Furuli says that "as far back as we have evidence we can find the four letters of the divine name" immediately after showing that the 14th C BCE example is only a trigrammaton (YHW) and it is the "Moabite stone "Mesha stele" (from the 9th C BCE) that is the oldest known use of the tetragrammaton example we have in writing. (The Moabite stone, the first tetragrammaton, is nearly 500 years younger than the older trigrammaton.)The narrator tries to drive the point home by saying that this evidence AGAINST his premise indisputably proves the premise.

On "Yah" (Jah), the narrator says that "Yah is indeed God's name...the short version", after which Furuli argues that Yah is "absolutely not an alternative name for Jehovah." (And Gertoux argues that it is not a shortened form based on the pronunciation of the first syllable, but at 21:40 says that Yah/Yahu is God's name when it attached to the end of a personal name.). This is argued from its supposed rarity as a standalone name. But Furuli says it's found 20 times in hallelujah, and 19 times as a standalone name, which totals 49 times (20+19=49). His math is never corrected (either here or in his chronology books), probably because he speaks so authoritatively that no one notices. Of course, the name "Yah" is also embedded in many proper names of individuals in the same way that this video had already shown that others like Nebuchadnezzar, Ramses, etc, included the name of their god(s) in their names. This gets discussed starting at minute 21 of the video.

Then they show Furuli and Gertoux disagreeing about the importance of the final H, where Gertoux says it means the pronunciation was like the a in "ah" but Furuli correctly points out that it was only "very often" and could also stand for either "A" or an "AE." He indicates through his pronunciation that "AE" means either a short "eh" sound or the vowel sometimes represented by the term "schwa").  Then the narrator ignores this contradiction, pretends it's not one at all, and strangely uses it to leap to the conclusion that Jehovah is therefore correct and Yahweh is isn't. See also

    Hello guest!
for a different point on the vowel to be included with the ending "H".

On the point that the vowels for ADONAI (Lord) were attached to the Tetragrammaton the video goes through a confused "proof" that this can't be true because the slight difference in the actual vowels of Adonai are different from the Masoretic INITIAL vowel pointing of YHWH. (YaHoWaH vs. YeHoWaH). But instead of showing the evidence, an interview with Nehemia Gordon shifts the subject to the middle vowel "O" as if this was not already known in the Masoretic text and he appears to pretend that he has discovered this "missing" vowel himself. He didn't "discover" anything except for himself; it was already known. This is the place in the video where Gertoux tries to apply the age-old conspiracy theory that scholars know something but don't want to upset their fellow colleagues. This happens under centralized power structures all the time, but this of course is in direct contradiction to the parallel claim that scholars are always in competition for something new and will sacrifice their own mother for gaining a bit of attention in the academic world. In truth, the reason it's difficult to get a hearing on some new theory is that you have to show good evidence that disproves the earlier theory which should mean that you deal with all the evidence already put forth for the previous theory. These types of videos are rarely ever based on ALL the prior evidence, but usually just some small piece of the evidence that can be made to appear weak. And the audience is often limited to those who are hoping for something, anything, that they can hang onto in support of their own pet theories.

6 of the 60 Masoretic manuscripts are known to have the full vowels corresponding to Yehowah. (Note minute 46 of this interview with Nehemia Gordon, the same person interviewed in the Reibling video in your original post:

    Hello guest!
  )

 

"Even the scholar Rolf Furuli speaks out against the form Yahweh" is so disingenuous as to be cringeworthy. (18:52)

What they have left out here which is very important is that the vowels roughly corresponding to Adonai were NOT the only vowels that the Masoretic texts applied to YHWH.

In the portion of the video about embedding the divine name as part of an individual's name assumptions are made about the vowel pronunciation that completely forget the prior admission that we don't know the pronunciation of the vowels as they were pronounced in ancient Hebrew. (Gordon sells books based on the premise that Hebrew was a resurrected language, not spoken for 2000 years, which allows him some extra freedom for "discovery.") There are also known differences in initial vowels that were long and become short based on the pronunciation of the second vowel in a word. Contractions based on syllable emphasis are common and are even seen in the various verb forms. An initial vowel that we might think would be unpronounced in some words could also develop into a well-pronounced longer vowel if the middle consonant/vowel combination was contracted. The ah and oh vowels were sometimes interchangeable in words so that even the Masoretic pointing for the "ah" is still pronounced "oh" in some words. The long O and U are also commonly interchanged so that even when WAW/VAV is used as a vowel, it can swap between the O "oh" sound and the U "oooh" sound. (Also in Arabic as in the difference between Osama and Usama, Koran/Quran.) In the Bible itself we see alternative names that give evidence of contractions where Yahu or Yeho at the beginning of a word becomes Yo, (Jonathan from Yehonathan, Joshuah/Jesus from Yehoshuah) but the ending Yah could include "YahU" as is admitted in the video by Gertoux at location 21:34. In the mention of Jehoshaphat, Joel is quoted.  It's not mentioned that Joel himself is a name that means Jehovah (Yo) is God (El) but without a Yehoel form known. Similarly, Elijah means God (El) is Jehovah (Yah). It's odd that the video says there are no exceptions when Jonathan himself is a name mentioned with one of the exceptions.

  • (Ezra 10:15) 15 However, Jonʹa·than the son of Asʹa·hel and Jah·zeiʹah the son of Tikʹvah objected to this, and the Levites Me·shulʹlam and Shabʹbe·thai supported them.

This only covers some problems from the first half of the video, which appears intended to convince people who have not done a full study. I'm sure we shouldn't discount the possibility that "Jehovah" (from "Yehowah") is one of the possible alternatives. If however, the entire point of the Masoretic text was to produce vowel-pointed pronunciations that helped readers avoid the true pronunciation, then they did a terrible job by supposedly giving away the true vowels in some places but not others. I believe I wrote a note to the Librarian here once that had some evidence about this in the Masoretic texts. I'll see if it's still here and post it.

 

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-----Found it (from a private conversation)...

No. It's a common vowel pointing. It showed up this way sometimes in the Masoretic texts about 1,000 years ago. I know you already know that there were no vowel points in the older Hebrew texts, including the Dead Sea Scrolls. Usually it did not include the "o" (holam) point after the first "H".

Here's an example at

    Hello guest!

It doesn't say, but it's the Aleppo Codex of Joshua 1:1 . . . . It includes the "e" and the "a[h]" but not the "o".

Here's an example at

    Hello guest!

It doesn't say, but it's also from the Aleppo Codex of Ezekiel 28:2 and it includes the "o". I included the picture, because it highlights the tetragrammaton.

So, yes, it's one of the possible vowel pointings, which may have been used to remind readers to pronounce with the word ADONAI, ELOHIM, or HA-SHEM, etc. 

Notice the evidence that this Adonai vowel pointing was NOT supposed to be the actual pronunciation of the Tetragrammaton, but a replacement pronunciation of the entire word "ADONAI" (Lord). What would happen (sometimes) if the term used in the original Heberw was already ADONAI YHWH? The reader would end up saying ADONAI ADONAI. This happens in Judges 6:22 for example.

Judges 6:22 in the same Aleppo Codex, uses different vowel points shown in the smaller picture, attached. These are the vowel points for ELOHIM. It's evidently because it follows the word ADONAI. (Notice that the "o" is left off Adonai here, too.) It's not consistent, as the Ezekel 28:2 passage showed, but the fact that the name has inconsistent vowel pointing is evidence that whatever vowel points are used were NOT intended for pronunciation. That fact alone is evidence that these two vowel pointings become evidence of two ways in which the name must NOT have been pronounced. (Although someone could argue that an exceptional vowel pointing could have been an accidental slip that revealed the actual way it was pronounced at the time of the Masorete scribes.)

 

 

    Hello guest!

    Hello guest!

    Hello guest!

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Just had to comment on the point at 23:55 in the video: "In a well-known Bible translation we can read, 'I shall prove to be what I shall prove to be.' " The video won't say, of course, what translation this is, but we already know it's the old NWT:

  • (Exodus 3:14) At this God said to Moses: “I SHALL PROVE TO BE WHAT I SHALL PROVE TO BE.” And he added: “This is what you are to say to the sons of Israel, ‘I SHALL PROVE TO BE has sent me to YOU.’”

Of course, this was changed in the 2013 revision:

  • (Exodus 3:14) 14 So God said to Moses: “I Will Become (AHYH) What I Choose to Become (AHYH).” And he added: “This is what you are to say to the Israelites, ‘I Will Become (AHYH)has sent me to you.’”

Oddly, the new 2013 translation got rid of the verb form "prove to be [this or that]" in about 300 places, leaving only a few exceptions which seem now as if they are just accidental, vestigial remnants of the old translation. But it's also odd that in the new translation Jehovah CHANGES his name in the middle of this verse, leaving out the idea of "CHOOSING" even though it was never in the Hebrew to begin with. In the Hebrew there is a different "tetragrammaton" here "AHYH" and it never changes between the first two uses and the third use. (Using "A" for the consonant "ayin") It's actually just a form of the word "to be." It's the same word found here:

  • (Genesis 3:1) 3 Now the serpent was the most cautious of all the wild animals. . . (NWT)
  • (Judges 20:12) 12 Then the tribes of Israel sent men to all the tribesmen of Benjamin, saying: “What is this terrible thing that has happened among you?  (NWT)

     

Hebrew, like some other Semitic languages, does not always need the verb "to be" (or "am") especially in the present tense, because it is easily understood in most contexts without spelling it out. It's used more often when it's useful in producing a non-standard "tense" of a verb. It's definitely given special significance in Exodus 3:14, but not so much that it requires various ideas to be added to the translation.

 

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5 hours ago, JW Insider said:

Most (perhaps all?) of the known people associated with the sponsor of the video (Reibling Foundation) are Witnesses, too.

Yes, I didn't want to mention this though so it wouldn't bias anyone, and left it up to them to do the research if they wanted. It was sent to me as an "independent, secular documentary". Of course, as soon as I spotted Furuli I became suspicious it was not, and then the contents. Just a little search of the names in the credits after the film brings out lots of other info. Many involved are Witnesses but not all. The director Fritz Poppenberg doesn't seem to be a JW, but obviously a JW apologist, Nehemiah Gordon is a Karaite Rabbi (never heard of the Karaite Jews, very interesting) and the sound director Peter Kaizar doesn't appear to be one. There is a website (obviously biased against JW) that analyses the documentary and the involvement of JWs....(but that's not where I got my info from).

I was hoping you would see this post as I was as sure you would have plenty to say (:D). I look forward to reading your critique later, and respond. 

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I haven't yet. Other things intervene. But I will. You would think something like a documentary on God's name would interest me. Somehow it doesn't. Or rather, it does, but not enough for it to go to the top of the stack.

This fellow Furuli's name pops up a lot. There may even be a brief exchange with him somewhere on my own blog - or maybe it was with someone else. I wonder who he is.

These brothers that write books - I wonder what they are like as people. My understanding is that the books are academic in nature. I have written two ebooks, and they have facts and history, but I would never call them scholarly. They are as much storytelling and anecdotes with large doses of humor inserted.

Even the third book cannot be called scholarly, though it is the one I will first try to get into print. I'll cut back on the jokes, too, but not an occasional measured bit of sarcasm. I hope it is a resource, but it will very much be a work of an apologist.

 

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17 minutes ago, TrueTomHarley said:

This fellow Furuli's name pops up a lot. There may even be a brief exchange with him somewhere on my own blog - or maybe it was with someone else. I wonder who he is.

I would have never known he even existed were it not for JW Insider. You can just google his name and go to Wikipedia which gives pretty concise info. about him. His name has also been mentioned in our publications, but easily overlooked. He wrote the two articles in WT 2011 about when was ancient Jerusalem destroyed, if I'm not mistaken. Of course there is a lot more interesting stuff, as he is a big supporter of the 607 B.C. question. One can even contact him via a blog. (I think JW Insider had discussions with him)

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15 hours ago, Anna said:

Yes, I didn't want to mention this though so it wouldn't bias anyone, and left it up to them to do the research if they wanted. It was sent to me as an "independent, secular documentary".

This is the first time I've seen this video. (About 3 AM this morning.) I watched it because I think it's something I should have seen before. Someone mentioned it a couple years ago, but I never went looking for it. Actually I think you still had to pay for it back when I first heard about it, so I figured I'd wait until it came out on cable or Netflix.

Sorry if I biased anyone about the Reibling Foundation or their projects. I think most of their projects have been good, high-quality projects. But I'm concerned about the kind of money that has been transferred in their direction. I'll post a couple of items below  that appear to be based on some evidence.  I've also heard that Gene Smalley (Writing Department, Bethel) had evidently shown great interest in the Watchtower getting in on the ground floor investments in a device that hospitals could use in support of JW blood policy on autologous transfusions. The Reibling Foundation was paid 4 million for promoting support of this device (not from WTBTS, however). The WTBTS gave them the deal on one of their Brooklyn Heights hotels, where the Reiblings made about 10 million in profit reselling the building, and were able to take advantage of some volunteer labor under Bethel's control.

15 hours ago, Anna said:

The director Fritz Poppenberg doesn't seem to be a JW, but obviously a JW apologist,

Not even sure that JW apologist is appropriate. Don't think he has much of a relationship with JWs. He was hired for his voice and the ability to "independently" represent a point of view, even if it was completely scripted for him. With enough money, I suppose you could even hire Morgan Freeman to give the "independent" voice to a crazy conspiracy theory about UFO's abducting Hillary Clinton. (Look at the kind of stuff they call "discovery, history, or science" on cable's Discovery Channel, History Channel, etc.)  I know that Poppenberg helped with other JW related projects, but I'd guess it's only because they already know he will. The production end of this video need not have been done by people with any JW interests. Nehemia Gordon gives several interviews to Christian "Jewish" Messianic outreach organizations, even though he also makes fun of some of these same groups on the side.

The following is not completely checked out, but I've found info so far that confirms some of it, and nothing that disconfirms any of it.

----------------WARNING: some parts picked up from ex-JW sites-----------------

A Common Bond's Response to the Documentary Knocking - part 2

Where the Money Came From

On May 22, 2007, a documentary program entitled Knocking was shown on some Public Broadcasting System (PBS) stations throughout the United States as a part of their "Independent Lens" series of programs. Because PBS does not accept commercial advertisements, programming on this network is paid for through grants from various corporate sources, public and private foundations, and individual funding. Programming on PBS always discloses the sources of funding for it's shows at the time of the
program's airing, as well as on the PBS website. An examination of the PBS website lists the following as providing major funding for Knocking:
Walter Zaremba
Gunther Reibling
New York Community Trust
A further examination of the Knocking website shows the following list of supporters at the bottom of each page:
Independent Television Service
Corporation for Public Broadcasting
Reibling Foundation
Note the name "Reibling" on both sites as a major contributor for the production of this program. A quick search on the internet found a
connection between Gunther Reibling, the Reibling Foundation, and the Watchtower Bible & Tract Society on the Boston College website. Further research reveals the establishment of the Laura and Lorenz Reibling Family Foundation of Boston, Massachusetts as a charitable organization some time after Knocking had been funded. According to the website of Taurus Investment Holdings, Lorenz Reibling is the brother of Gunther Reibling. Unconfirmed sources we consider trusted and reliable believe both Reibling brothers to be practicing Jehovah's Witnesses. Whether or not this is true, the Reibling family does associate with people who have close ties to the Watchtower. An online bio of Lorenz Reibling states the following:
Lorenz Reibling, Chairman, Taurus Investment Holdings
Lorenz is Chairman and a principal of Taurus Investment Holdings, LLC. As cofounder of Taurus, Lorenz has been responsible for the acquisition and/or development of over 100 commercial real estate projects throughout the United States since 1976. He regularly participates as co-investor in Taurus-sponsored real estate transactions. In 1966, Lorenz completed an apprenticeship as Industriekaufmann at Obpacher AG, a Weyerhauser-affiliated, Munich-based printing and publishing plant. Lorenz subsequently graduated from Munchen-Kolleg and attended Technische Universitat and Ludwigs-Maximilians Universitat, earning degrees in Cybernetics and Psychology. His early research on personality changes in heart transplant patients was conducted at
University Hospital Munich Grosshadern. After immigration to America he received a MS from Boston College in Organizational Management with focus on maximizing intellectual capital. He has attended and completed specialized courses at MIT and Harvard on real estate related subjects. Mr. Reibling's early career included employment with multinational corporations such as Hoechst (Cassella Riedl), American Hospital Supply Corporation, and CPI Cardiac Pacemakers, Inc. specializing in sophisticated cardiac stimulation appliances. Mr. Reibling is a full member of the AHI Angel Healthcare Investor Group, The Massachusetts Historical Society, Friends of the Kunstakademie Munchen, and supporter of numerous philantropic organizations. He was appointed to the advisory board of MIT/CRE (Massachusetts Institute of Technology/Center for Real Estate). As a collector of 15th-16th century Bibles and Reformation literature, Mr. Reibling has initiated and co-sponsored significant research and exhibition projects, such as "The Art of the Book: A journey through a Thousand Years" and "Confront: Resistance against Nazi Terror." He is fluent in German, English, Spanish and Italian. His residency is in the United States with homes in Massachusetts and Florida. He is married for 26 years with three adult children.

It is startling to note that Lorenz Reibling conducted research on "personality transplants" at around the same time that the Watchtower was teaching that organ transplantation was a disfellowshippable offense due to it's being considered cannibalism and a risk for the patient taking on the personality of the donor. Some time later, the Watchtower lifted the restriction against organ transplants, but failed to invite back the disfellowshipped members who had "sinned" by having life-saving surgery, but "went ahead of Jehovah" by doing so before the ban was lifted. Another way to trace the Reiblings' association with the Watchtower is by doing an internet search on the other name that appears on the PBS website as a provider of major funding: Walter Zaremba.
A search on the internet revealed the docket of a federal court case:
BIELERT v. NORTHERN OHIO PROPERTIES [No. 87-4031, 1988 WL 125357, at *5 (6th Cir. 1988)] was a 1988 federal lawsuit in which David Bielert alleged that he suffered employment discrimination, in violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, because he was not a Jehovah's Witness. Northern Ohio Properties was a subsidiary of Zaremba Corporation, owned by Tim Zaremba, Walter Zaremba, and other members of the Zaremba family. The Zaremba family are Jehovah's Witnesses, and many of the investors and employees of the related corporations are believed to be Jehovah's Witnesses.
Zaremba is linked to Reibling by a man named Aaron Gibitz who has worked for both Taurus (Reibling) and Zaremba:
From March 2002 to the present, Mr. Gibitz has been a consultant to Taurus Investment Group,Inc., based in Deerfield Beach, Florida. Taurus invest in real estate and has other business interest including health and wellness consumer products and media/technology. From March 1997 through March 2002, Mr. Gibitz was an executive with Zaremba Management, based in Independence, Ohio..

----------------

  • Westbrook declined to comment, but public records show the company paid $60 million for the 12-story building overlooking the Brooklyn Heights Promenade with views of the city. The Watchtower Society of The Jehovah’s Witnesses sold the building at 169 Columbia Heights for $50 million in 2007 to the Boston-based Taurus Investment Holdings, which converted it into 94 luxury apartment rentals shortly thereafter. [Taurus Investments is a Reibling company]

------------------

Then again, these amounts are only a small percentage of the real estate deals the Reiblings have been involved with. I found this in the New York Times:

  • NYT: But building is not without risks, according to Lorenz Reibling, who came here from Germany a decade ago, and whose company, Taurus Investments Group of Boca Raton, Fla., typically averages one $5 million deal a month, bringing German and Swiss equity partners into American real estate.
      Hello guest!

Don't know if you can still do this, but after Knocking came out, I looked up names on LinkedIn for the companies involved and was able to confirm a network of JWs involved.

 

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7 hours ago, JW Insider said:

(About 3 AM this morning.)

That's funny, both me and my husband found it hard to sleep last night, was there a full moon or something?

7 hours ago, JW Insider said:

But I'm concerned about the kind of money that has been transferred in their direction. I'll post a couple of items below  that appear to be based on some evidence.  I've also heard that Gene Smalley (Writing Department, Bethel) had evidently shown great interest in the Watchtower getting in on the ground floor investments in a device that hospitals could use in support of JW blood policy on autologous transfusions. The Reibling Foundation was paid 4 million for promoting support of this device (not from WTBTS, however). The WTBTS gave them the deal on one of their Brooklyn Heights hotels, and that the Reiblings made about 10 million in profit reselling the building, and were able to take advantage of some volunteer labor under Bethel's control.

Yep, I read this too, maybe from the same website you later quote from, although there are probably a few...

7 hours ago, JW Insider said:

Not even sure that JW apologist is appropriate. Don't think he has much of a relationship with JWs. He was hired for his voice and the ability to "independently" represent a point of view, even if it was completely scripted for him. With enough money, I suppose you could even hire Morgan Freeman to give the "independent" voice to a crazy conspiracy theory about UFO's abducting Hillary Clinton. (Look at the kind of stuff they call "discovery, history, or science" on cable's Discovery Channel, History Channel, etc.) 

You are probably right, I was too hasty to assume. Just because someone is willing to work with the Witnesses doesn't automatically make them sympathisers. Yes, money definitely talks.

7 hours ago, JW Insider said:

t is startling to note that Lorenz Reibling conducted research on "personality transplants"

That is crazy and I've heard this before, didn't know he was part of the Reibling family. I knew about their involvement in a medical company that produces blood substitutes, but I didn't know their ties to Knocking as well. The great thing is that now anyone can be a successful detective without leaving their desk, thanks to google. And unfortunately, ex- witnesses make this job even easier because they've already done the work, all you have to do is confirm it. I just checked LinkedIn and wow, Lorenzo is a bigwig (I sent him a request, lol). My gut feelings tell me he is a Witness. Of course I can't confirm this because it doesn't say in his profile, but then it doesn't say in my profile either, but there are far too many Witness connections and leads and also what you spoke about. One can send him an email, so maybe one should just ask :). I feel such a small fish in a big pond, but there is a congregation out there somewhere and all in those circles will know who he is and what he does. I know a few billionaire brother who were in the same cong. as me in Europe, and I am sure there are many, many like him, you just need to be where he is. The sad thing is I was sent this film in good faith, that it is a non denominational documentary, and had it not been for Furuli right at the onset, I might not have become suspicious (although the ending was kind of suspicious).  I told my step father who sent it to me and he then began to look into it a bit more and found that indeed it is a "Witness" film. I love how informed we can be if we want, nothing is a mystery anymore. Does it make a difference in this particular case? I don't know...one thing I won't be doing for sure is recommending it to anyone as proof that "even secular experts" recognize, what we as JWs already "know", and I think this will have been the intention of the many who assumed it is not from us. They would have found it faith strengthening, but then when you know the real story.....lol...So then would it be ok to have one's faith strengthened by something that is not what it seems? By something that is actually a false premise?  It's weird really isn't it?

Anyway, what I really want to do now is look at your analysis, which I merely skimmed through up to now, and look at the references you made to the movie. I can already tell a lot of it is pretty much what struck me as well!

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5 hours ago, JW Insider said:

BIELERT v. NORTHERN OHIO PROPERTIES [No. 87-4031, 1988 WL 125357, at *5 (6th Cir. 1988)] was a 1988 federal lawsuit in which David Bielert alleged that he suffered employment discrimination, in violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, because he was not a Jehovah's Witness. Northern Ohio Properties was a subsidiary of Zaremba Corporation, owned by Tim Zaremba, Walter Zaremba, and other members of the Zaremba family. The Zaremba family are Jehovah's Witnesses, and many of the investors and employees of the related corporations are believed to be Jehovah's Witnesses.
Zaremba is linked to Reibling by a man named Aaron Gibitz who has worked for both Taurus (Reibling) and Zaremba:
From March 2002 to the present, Mr. Gibitz has been a consultant to Taurus Investment Group,Inc., based in Deerfield Beach, Florida. Taurus invest in real estate and has other business interest including health and wellness consumer products and media/technology. From March 1997 through March 2002, Mr. Gibitz was an executive with Zaremba Management, based in Independence, Ohio..

Thanks, interesting!

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27 minutes ago, TrueTomHarley said:

Is there a way to find brothers on LI?

Yes, ones you know, lol (you can find me there too, although I am a sister :D). Some Witnesses will have that they are Witnesses in their profile, but many don't... There is one of our elders there as one of my contacts, and every time I see his photo I have to laugh because you would never guess he is a brother (and a good one) because he has a beard, lol. In fact about 85% of my contacts are JW

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15 hours ago, JW Insider said:

Furuli says that "as far back as we have evidence we can find the four letters of the divine name" immediately after showing that the 14th C BCE example is only a trigrammaton (YHW)

LOL! Exactly, that was so weird...you would have thought post- production would have caught that!

15 hours ago, JW Insider said:

The narrator tries to drive the point home by saying that this evidence AGAINST his premise indisputably proves the premise.

:D

15 hours ago, JW Insider said:

On "Yah" (Jah), the narrator says that "Yah is indeed God's name...the short version", after which Furuli argues that Yah is "absolutely not an alternative name for Jehovah." (And Gertoux argues that it is not a shortened form based on the pronunciation of the first syllable, but at 21:40 says that Yah/Yahu is God's name when it attached to the end of a personal name.)

Yep, I thought what the heck....? o.O

15 hours ago, JW Insider said:

His math is never corrected (either here or in his chronology books), probably because he speaks so authoritatively that no one notices.

Well I for one would never be the one to argue with his math, hehehe

 

15 hours ago, JW Insider said:

Then the narrator ignores this contradiction, pretends it's not one at all, and strangely uses it to leap to the conclusion that Jehovah is therefore correct and Yahweh is isn't.

Yep, noticed that too...

15 hours ago, JW Insider said:

the video goes through a confused "proof" that this can't be true because the slight difference in the actual vowels of Adonai are different from the Masoretic INITIAL vowel pointing of YHWH

That's the point at which I went a little brain dead for a few seconds...

 

15 hours ago, JW Insider said:

But instead of showing the evidence, an interview with Nehemia Gordon shifts the subject to the middle vowel "O" as if this was not already known in the Masoretic text and he appears to pretend that he has discovered this "missing" vowel himself. He didn't "discover" anything except for himself; it was already known.

That I didn't know

15 hours ago, JW Insider said:

In truth, the reason it's difficult to get a hearing on some new theory is that you have to show good evidence that disproves the earlier theory which should mean that you deal with all the evidence already put forth for the previous theory. These types of videos are rarely ever based on ALL the prior evidence, but usually just some small piece of the evidence that can be made to appear weak. And the audience is often limited to those who are hoping for something, anything, that they can hang onto in support of their own pet theories.

Interesting

15 hours ago, JW Insider said:

"Even the scholar Rolf Furuli speaks out against the form Yahweh" is so disingenuous as to be cringeworthy.

I caught that immediately and cringed too....very dishonest and banking on the fact that many will not know who Furuli is, like I didn't know, until you told me...

15 hours ago, JW Insider said:

that completely forget the prior admission that we don't know the pronunciation of the vowels as they were pronounced in ancient Hebrew.

Yes, I was surprised any assumptions were made when we as JWs ourselves have admitted we just can't know....

15 hours ago, JW Insider said:

An initial vowel that we might think would be unpronounced in some words could also develop into a well-pronounced longer vowel if the middle consonant/vowel combination was contracted. The ah and oh vowels were sometimes interchangeable in words so that even the Masoretic pointing for the "ah" is still pronounced "oh" in some words. The long O and U are also commonly interchanged so that even when WAW/VAV is used as a vowel, it can swap between the O "oh" sound and the U "oooh" sound. (Also in Arabic as in the difference between Osama and Usama, Koran/Quran.) In the Bible itself we see alternative names that give evidence of contractions where Yahu or Yeho at the beginning of a word becomes Yo, (Jonathan from Yehonathan, Joshuah/Jesus from Yehoshuah) but the ending Yah could include "YahU" as is admitted in the video by Gertoux at location 21:34. In the mention of Jehoshaphat, Joel is quoted.  It's not mentioned that Joel himself is a name that means Jehovah (Yo) is God (El) but without a Yehoel form known. Similarly, Elijah means God (El) is Jehovah (Yah). It's odd that the video says there are no exceptions when Jonathan himself is a name mentioned with one of the exceptions.

Interesting

15 hours ago, JW Insider said:

which appears intended to convince people who have not done a full study.

Ahem..

-----------------------

All in all a terrible, haphazard, and unconvincing documentary in my opinion. A waste of time and money.

In any case, I always find the argument about the “correct” pronunciation of God’s name in English useless anyway. Would you say it was pronounced more correctly in Italian? Or German? Or  Chinese? (I mean come on, who speaks ancient Hebrew) It’s even spelled differently in many languages, but we all know we are talking about God's name Jehovah or Yahweh in its Anglicized form, and however else it's pronounced or spelled in other languages you use. It made me wonder what even was the point of the film? At least Knocking was more purposeful.....

 

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Guest J.R. Ewing

Then the consideration still remains as to modern usage. J [I}vav, or Ywaw. The old standard of correction is Yahweh, while the new consideration would still be stipulated as Jehova. There are still many differences between scholars. However, the question is, which ones agree linguistically to the true intent (context) of the old scribes.

Therefore, I would agree, the Watchtower has an excellent command of, bible languages.

 

 

 

REVIEWS, Oxford JournalÂ’s 2015
178
Futato elects to call the Hebrew letter ‘?vav’, so following modern pronunciation. This represents a rather questionable feature for a Biblical Hebrew textbook, when there is good reason to assume that it should be pronounced ‘waw’, and this remains common practice in most Biblical Hebrew textbooks. This represents,
however, the only ‘negative’ feature of an otherwise solid, but basic introduction to the principles and vocabulary of biblical Hebrew. [p.180]

2005 SAGE Publications and Contributors

THE TEXT OF THE HEBREW BIBLE
Adrian Schenker (ed.), The Earliest Text of the Hebrew Bible: The Relationship between the Masoretic Text and the Hebrew Base of the Septuagint Reconsidered (Atlanta, GA: SBL, 2003. $29.95. pp. 153. ISBN 1–58983–081–4).
The discovery of biblical fragments among the Dead Sea Scrolls and other finds from the Judaean desert, allowing unprecedented access to the earliest Hebrew witnesses to biblical books, and a substantial body of Greek and Aramaic fragments, revolutionized studies in the history of biblical texts. Now that the
task of publishing the Dead Sea material is finally complete, the proliferation of such studies is set to
continue. In this context, the age-old question of how to evaluate the variations in content, order, textual
tradition and text critical differences between the Hebrew Bible and
lxx has been central. The volume under review aims to give an account of the state of the question in the light of recent research on the Dead Sea material and lxx, with a particular focus on biblical books ‘where the relation between the Masoretic text form and the Greek text of the Septuagint appeared to be most in need of a new explanation’ (p. vi). Six case studies, all by leading lxx specialists, represent sophisticated analyses of material in this category, and, in many cases, offer important new insights and substantial re-evaluations of earlier judgements. A valuable reappraisal of the Qumran fragments of Judges concludes that the Hebrew text behind Greek Judges was little different from MT (Fernández Marcos). Other case studies suggest the greater antiquity of specific lxx traditions in comparison with MT as illustrated by comparison of 1 Kings and lxx 3 Reigns (Schwenker); 1 Esdras and Ezra-Nehemiah (Böhler); the Vetus Latina of Jeremiah (Bogaert); lxx Ezekiel (Lust); and Daniel
(Munnich).

These studies do not put forward a definitive judgement on the question; nor do they pretend that that is possible in the present state of research. A final chapter by Emanuel Tov evaluates the significance of large-scale differences between lxx and MT, Syriac Bible, Targum and Vulgate, concluding that a significant number of such differences existed prior to MT; and that lxx is the single most important source to preserve redactionally different material, often earlier than MT, because of the different character or greater antiquity of the Hebrew manuscripts used by the translators. Nevertheless, the state of the question means that we remain far from a definitive answer: ‘. . . we are only beginning to unravel the mystery of the background of the Hebrew manuscripts used for the lxx and that of the relations between the ancient witnesses in general’ (p. 144). This is an important volume, and a strong reminder that students of the history of the Bible must take the lxx very seriously.


SARAH PEARCE
University of Southampton

 

 

 

JWI: “Sorry if I biased anyone about the Reibling Foundation or their projects. I think most of their projects have been good, high-quality projects. But I'm concerned about the kind of money that has been transferred in their direction. I'll post a couple of items below  that appear to be based on some evidence.  I've also heard that Gene Smalley (Writing Department, Bethel) had evidently shown great interest in the Watchtower getting in on the ground floor investments in a device that hospitals could use in support of JW blood policy on autologous transfusions. The Reibling Foundation was paid 4 million for promoting support of this device (not from WTBTS, however).”

A foundation is a non-governmental entity that is established as a nonprofit corporation or a charitable trust, with a principal purpose of making grants to unrelated organizations, institutions, or individuals for scientific, educational, cultural, religious, or other charitable purposes.

Then, which Reibling foundation is being referred to here, The one in Pasadena CA, or the one in Boca Raton, FL. I’m sure there are other “subdivisions” of this nonprofit organization, run by different committees, that contribute funds. In the “case” of “blood issues”, the funds would go to, scientific study and research. So, you through this out there to see if something would stick without having “concrete evidence” as usual. Thanks for the conspiracy!!!!! :ph34r:

TTH: That would depend if, your running for office to gather “dirt” (LinkedIn) on the opposition, or are you selling the information to Wikileaks, which is it? ¬¬

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7 minutes ago, J.R. Ewing said:

Then, which Reibling foundation is being referred to here, The one in Pasadena CA, or the one in Boca Raton, FL

The one who is also the co founder, chairman and senior partner of Taurus Investment Holdings; Mr. Lorenz Reibling.

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Guest J.R. Ewing

Oh! OK a senior partner of the Taurus investment holdings LLC of Boston, Massachusetts, got it! Just making sure where the actual funds would come from when foundations get involved for charitable purposes, and who can be linked just for being part of an organization.

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12 hours ago, TrueTomHarley said:
16 hours ago, JW Insider said:

His early research on personality changes in heart transplant patients

Are there some?

Not from the heart tissue itself. Transplant patients sometimes have psychological issues however. There are still many transplant candidates who won't go through with it, often out of guilt for having messed up an organ based on their own bad health decisions and realize that by getting the organ from a recently-healthy donor they are taking away from a more deserving person farther down the list of transplant candidates. Those prone to depression or suicide might find themselves more often pondering life-and-death issues which could be a trigger for further depression and risk of suicide.

When heart transplants were first attempted, and people thought it Frankenstein-like, made-up stories started to appear about people who got transplants from criminals and then became criminals. Brother Schroeder (GB) started giving talks on this subject, where he made the heart the LITERAL, PHYSICAL seat of motivation, rather than just a representative one. Finally he got his long Watchtower article on the heart published that also made use of this idea. But this and similar articles were still getting responses with data that seemed to debunk it. (The letters I saw didn't come from Witnesses but from professionals who had been told this by Witness patients.) When I first started working for Schroeder as a researcher he wanted me to stay on the lookout for such things, not just about the heart, but about all anecdotes for any type of transplant.

This was our position in 1975:

*** w75 9/1 p. 519 Insight on the News ***

  • It has long been known that heart-transplant patients have a higher-than-average amount of postoperative psychiatric problems. But it seems that the same is true with regard to some other vital organ transplants, such as kidney transplants. U.C.L.A. psychiatry professor Dr. Pietro Castelnuovo-Tedesco is quoted as saying: “An outstanding finding following transplantation is the not infrequent occurrence of serious emotional disturbance.” One study of 292 kidney-transplant patients showed that nearly 20 percent experienced severe depression after the operation, a few even attempting suicide. By contrast, only about one out of every 1,500 general-surgery patients develops a severe emotional disturbance. 
  • A peculiar factor sometimes noted is a so-called ‘personality transplant.’ That is, the recipient in some cases has seemed to adopt certain personality factors of the person from whom the organ came. One young promiscuous woman who received a kidney from her older, conservative, well-behaved sister, at first seemed very upset. Then she began imitating her sister in much of her conduct. Another patient claimed to receive a changed outlook on life after his kidney transplant. Following a transplant, one mild-tempered man became aggressive like the donor. The problem may be largely or wholly mental. But it is of interest, at least, that the Bible links the kidneys closely with human emotions.—Compare Jeremiah 17:10 and Revelation 2:23.

The second paragraph is, of course, unrelated to the study quoted. Schroeder had linked himself rather closely with the literal side of this, and didn't like the "compromise" claiming that the problem "may be largely or wholly mental." You'd have to know more about the personalities of both Fred Franz and Bert Schroeder to understand a later incident, (below) but it would help to know that Fred Franz was considered "The Oracle" in Governing Body circles and Brother Schroeder was sure he deserved to be the next "Oracle" after Franz died. So Schroeder would even go out and give unapproved talks that made such claims as if he were the new messenger of new truths.

 

Anyway, the "incident" was a Gilead talk that Fred Franz gave, in which you would never suspect that the entire 45 minute Bible-based talk was a tongue-in-cheek "attack" on Brother Schroeder. Most of Fred Franz' talks made it into the Watchtower, often as study articles. This one only got a small mention:

*** w77 6/1 p. 352 Examinations Yet Ahead for a Graduating Class ***

  • Before the distribution of diplomas, F. W. Franz also addressed the class. He reminded them of the school examinations that they had had earlier, but then arrested their attention by asking: “Have you had the more vital and serious examination of your kidneys?” He showed from Job 19:27 that in the Bible “kidneys” often represent the innermost recesses of one’s being. So, when Jeremiah 17:10 says that Jehovah ‘examines the kidneys,’ Franz explained, this is not a medical examination, but is done in a judicial capacity. In their postgraduate life, the speaker pointed out, the missionaries will face such an examination of their kidneys. How? In that new situations in life will confront them. When put to the test, what will they really prove to be, deep inside? The psalmist David, though a sinner, did not fear such an inspection by God. (Ps. 26:1-3) Nor should we. Concluding, Franz advised: “Be genuine Christians, not hypocritical, not counterfeit. Be sound Christians down to the core of your personality. If you are, you will pass the examination of your kidneys with everlasting credits to yourself and a clean bill of spiritual health.”

The full talk was about the liver, the fat, the kidneys, and took several swipes at the idea that these Biblical representations were to be taken literally in a medical sense. Brother Schroeder was livid afterwards, and was even more anxious to find evidence to prove Brother Franz to be wrong. If I told him that the information he sought was in a library in Japan, I'm sure he would have sent me there. (Before I forget, Schroeder once asked me research his theory that people who were forced to change from left-handed to right-handed at a young age would become diabetic or get hypoglycemia [low blood sugar] problems. I have no idea what the Biblical connection could have been.)

I should note that by 1980 the Watch Tower Society no longer disfellowshipped people for getting kidney transplants, and decided to expand this to all types of transplants -- even the heart!

*** w80 3/15 p. 31 Questions From Readers ***

  • Should congregation action be taken if a baptized Christian accepts a human organ transplant, such as of a cornea or a kidney?
  • Regarding the transplantation of human tissue or bone from one human to another, this is a matter for conscientious decision by each one of Jehovah’s Witnesses. Some Christians might feel that taking into their bodies any tissue or body part from another human is cannibalistic. . . . Other sincere Christians today may feel that the Bible does not definitely rule out medical transplants of human organs. They may reason that in some cases the human material is not expected to become a permanent part of the recipient’s body. Body cells are said to be replaced about every seven years, and this would be true of any human body parts that would be transplanted. . . . Clearly, personal views and conscientious feelings vary on this issue of transplantation. It is well known that the use of human materials for human consumption varies all the way from minor items, such as hormones and corneas, to major organs, such as kidneys and hearts. . . .  It is a matter for personal decision. (Gal. 6:5) The congregation judicial committee would not take disciplinary action if someone accepted an organ transplant.

This was pretty much the end of the line for Schroeder's line of reasoning on this topic. But this March 15, 1980 reasoning had been approved from the nephew of Fred Franz, also on the Governing Body, and there were rumors that this person, especially after his work on the Aid Book, was already being thought of as the next potential "Oracle." This would be Ray Franz, of course, whose research was often reasonable, but which could also be a mixed bag. He was far from perfect, and also far too low-profile and unassuming to be an organizational leader.)

It wasn't just about this issue, of course, but immediately after this article was written, Schroeder's personal campaign against R Franz ramped up, and Schroeder led every step of the campaign that resulted in R. Franz resigning from the Governing Body in May.

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27 minutes ago, JW Insider said:

where he made the heart the LITERAL, PHYSICAL seat of motivation

Yes, I remember this.

 

28 minutes ago, JW Insider said:

also far too low-profile and unassuming to be an organizational leader.

As am I. (not that I have ever applied for the job) Strange at the qualities associated with leading - as in David, a downright hothead at times (Nabal, for example) whereas bashful, modest Saul - well, just look at how he turned out.

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11 minutes ago, TrueTomHarley said:

Strange at the qualities associated with leading - as in David, a downright hothead at times (Nabal, for example)

  • (1 Samuel 25:22-25) 22 May God do the same and more to the enemies of David if I allow a single male of his to survive until the morning.” 23 When Abʹi·gail caught sight of David, she hurried down off the donkey and threw herself facedown before David, bowing to the ground. 24 She then fell at his feet and said: “My lord, let the blame be on me; let your servant girl speak to you, and listen to the words of your servant girl. 25 Please, do not let my lord pay attention to this worthless Naʹbal, for he is just like his name. Naʹbal is his name, and senselessness is with him.. . .

Abigail spoke disrespectfully of her husband and she became David's wife. Others who spoke disrespectfully of their "lord" in front of David did not fare so well. David was nothing if not inconsistent.

 

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1 hour ago, AllenSmith said:

Proverbs 16:28

At least half of the 20 GB members I have listened to over a course of several years seemed to be among the most humble of brothers. I can't say that for about 7 of them, but even where some might have seemed pompous at times, they were still usually likable and personable (F Franz, Sydlik, Swingle). Another 4 of them kept to themselves and didn't say much even during their weekly turns at morning worship from 1976 to 1982. But I have no trouble speaking out clearly and honestly about another 3 GB members who were more often pompous and insufferable to their fellow Bethelites and who even caused harm to the reputation of the Society and Jehovah's name.

  • (1 Thessalonians 2:4) 4 but, just as we have been proved by God as fit to be entrusted with the good news, so we speak, as pleasing, not men, but God, who makes proof of our hearts.
  • (Galatians 1:10) 10 Is it, in fact, men I am now trying to persuade or God? Or am I trying to please men? If I were still pleasing men, I would not be Christ’s slave. . .
  • (Romans 3:4) . . .But let God be found true, though every man be found a liar,. . .
  • (Jeremiah 8:8, 9) 8 “‘How can YOU men say: “We are wise, and the law of Jehovah is with us”? Surely, now, the false stylus of the secretaries has worked in sheer falsehood. 9 The wise ones have become ashamed. They have become terrified and will be caught. . . .

  • (Mark 4:22) 22 For there is nothing hidden that will not be exposed; nothing is carefully concealed that will not come out in the open.

 

On a forum where some of us want to discuss Bible questions, it is all the more important to be open and honest about the times when "guardians of doctrine" have sometimes been guardians of traditions that made the word of God invalid. This is part of progressing to spiritual maturity. If the GB are given undue reverence some people will think that they cannot be questioned and then the discussion of Bible questions is rendered invalid.

 

 

 

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9 hours ago, Anna said:

It made me wonder what even was the point of the film?

That's the right question. A bit disturbing when you consider the question at that level, isn't it?

Yet, it could have been done fairly and honestly. All the people involved had the ability to present it that way if they wanted to. Then, of course, it would not have the same appeal. And it would only be information already known in scholarly circles. But that would still be of interest even if it admitted questions for further research.

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1 hour ago, JW Insider said:

Please, do not let my lord pay attention to this worthless Naʹbal, for he is just like his name. Naʹbal is his name, and senselessness is with him..

There are some things I have not quite gotten my head around - even given that names could be assigned retroactively, like Peter and the rock, but .... during his lifetime? To his face? Did he introduce himself: "Pleased to meet you. My name is Worthless"?

It is almost like God being Hosea's matchmaker. Could I be so big? It's easy enough to get stuck with a 'wife of fornication' all on one's own without requiring divine help. Okay, okay, some of them had concubines back then, but still.

And don't get me started on Ezekiel staring at a brick. "Honey, I'm hooommee!" he hollers. "Tell me about your day, dear," his wife responds.

It's why those depictions don't entirely fly when these guys are portrayed as Ozzie and Harriet types, ever concerned about their dress and grooming. But we recognize the good intentions, and so we play along. After all, who can say what things were really like back in the day?

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2 hours ago, TrueTomHarley said:

There are some things I have not quite gotten my head around - even given that names could be assigned retroactively, like Peter and the rock, but .... during his lifetime? To his face? Did he introduce himself: "Pleased to meet you. My name is Worthless"?

I think the explanation is in the slight adjustments to words that the Hebrews used in order to remember how to pass on their stories verbally:

*** it-2 p. 457 Nabal ***

  • (Naʹbal) [Senseless; Stupid].

    A wealthy Maonite sheep owner who pastured and sheared his flocks in Carmel of Judah. Nabal was also known as a Calebite, that is, a descendant of Caleb. Few Bible characters are so contemptuously described as is Nabal. “[He] was harsh and bad in his practices”; “he is too much of a good-for-nothing fellow [son of Belial] to speak to him”; “he repays . . . evil in return for good”; “senselessness is with him.”—1Sa 25:2, 3, 17, 21, 25.

I could guess, but I couldn't say what his real name had been, although naming a kid "Stupid" seems like a self-fulfilled prophecy in the making.

Dozens of names were given slight adjustments in the Bible, the most notable of which were the ways in which a false god had his name changed to become something derogatory. Note the implication in this Insight book entry, starting with "Lord of the Flies":

*** it-1 p. 275 Beelzebub ***

  • (Be·elʹze·bub) [possibly an alteration of Baal-zebub, meaning “Owner of the Flies,” the Baal worshiped by the Philistines at Ekron. Alternately, Beelzeboul and Beezeboul, possibly meaning, “Owner of the Lofty Abode (Habitation)”; or, if a play on the non-Biblical Heb. word zeʹvel (dung), “Owner of the Dung”].

*** it-1 p. 234 Babel ***

  • (Baʹbel) [Confusion].One of the first cities to be built after the Flood. Here God “confused the language of all the earth.” (Ge 11:9) The name is derived from the verb ba·lalʹ, meaning “confuse.” Local citizens, thinking of their city as God’s seat of government, claimed that the name was compounded from Bab (Gate) and ilu (God), signifying “Gate of God.”

*** it-2 p. 39 Jerubbesheth ***

  • (Je·rubʹbe·sheth) [Let the Shameful Thing Make a Legal Defense (Contend)]. The name of Judge Gideon found at 2 Samuel 11:21. Evidently this is a form of Jerubbaal, the name given to Gideon by his father Joash when Gideon pulled down the altar of Baal. (Jg 6:30-32) Some scholars believe that the writer of Second Samuel replaced baʹʽal with the Hebrew word for “shame” (boʹsheth) in order not to use the name of the false god Baal as part of a proper name.—See GIDEON.

*** it-2 p. 424 Molech ***

  • (Moʹlech) [from a root meaning “reign as king” or “king,” but with the vowels of boʹsheth, “shame,” to denote abhorrence].

*** it-1 p. 1224 Ish-bosheth ***

  • (Ish-boʹsheth) [meaning “Man of Shame”].  Evidently the youngest of Saul’s sons, his successor to the throne. From the genealogical listings it appears that his name was also Eshbaal, meaning “Man of Baal.” (1Ch 8:33; 9:39) However, elsewhere, as in Second Samuel, he is called Ish-bosheth, a name in which “baal” is replaced by “bosheth.” (2Sa 2:10) This Hebrew word boʹsheth is found at Jeremiah 3:24 and is rendered “shameful thing.” (AS, AT, JP, NW, Ro, RS) In two other occurrences baʹʽal and boʹsheth are found parallel and in apposition, in which the one explains and identifies the other. (Jer 11:13; Ho 9:10) There are also other instances where individuals similarly had “bosheth” or a form of it substituted for “baal” in their names, as, for example, “Jerubbesheth” for “Jerubbaal” (2Sa 11:21; Jg 6:32) and “Mephibosheth” for “Merib-baal,” the latter being a nephew of Ish-bosheth.—2Sa 4:4; 1Ch 8:34; 9:40. The reason for these double names or substitutions is not known. One theory advanced by some scholars attempts to explain the dual names as an alteration made when the common noun “baal” (owner; master) became more exclusively identified with the distasteful fertility god of Canaan, Baal.

*** it-1 p. 967 Goat-shaped Demon ***

  • Just what such “hairy ones” (seʽi·rimʹ) actually were, however, is not stated. While some consider them to be literal goats or idols in the form of goats, this does not necessarily seem to be indicated; nor do other scriptures provide evidence of that nature. . . . Or, the use of “goats” in these references may be merely a means of expressing contempt for all idolatrous objects in general, even as the word for idols in numerous texts is drawn from a term originally meaning “dung pellets,” not denoting, however, that the idols were literally made of dung.—Le 26:30; De 29:17.

*** it-1 p. 1172 Idol, Idolatry ***

  • Often mention is made of “dungy idols,” this expression being a rendering of the Hebrew word gil·lu·limʹ, which is related to a word meaning “dung.” (1Ki 14:10; Zep 1:17) This term of contempt, first appearing at Leviticus 26:30, is found nearly 40 times in the book of Ezekiel alone, beginning with chapter 6, verse 4.

The Hebrew speakers took advantage of the fact that only a small change in spelling or vowels could attach a bad meaning to another term. Biblical Hebrew "play on words" was a very common practice, and is found in the words of the prophets especially. But in order to remember a story to pass on verbally, there are often more innocent reasons for the wordplay. For example, in the story of Isaac, you can almost tell that the "Yitzak" from which we get "Isaac" is onomatopoeia for "laughter" and the name means laughter. But the root term is used for several parts of the story. Sarah laughs ("yitzaks") that she will have a child in her old age and this is a significant part of the narrative.

  • (Genesis 21:6, 7) 6 Then Sarah said: “God has brought me laughter; everybody hearing of it will laugh with me.” 7 And she added: “Who would have said to Abraham, ‘Sarah will certainly nurse children’?. . .

But the next part of the story is important too, because Yitzak can also mean mean yuk-yuk/tsk-tsk in the form of mockery, and to some, can even imply sexual abuse:

  • (Genesis 21:9, 10) 9 But Sarah kept noticing that the son of Haʹgar the Egyptian, whom she had borne to Abraham, was mocking ("Yitzack"-ing) Isaac. 10 So she said to Abraham: “Drive out this slave girl and her son, . . .

But the relationship between Isaac and his wife is also remembered through the same word as they were yucking it up in the sight of the king, because the word can even imply sexual foreplay.

  • (Genesis 26:8) 8 After some time had passed, A·bimʹe·lech king of the Phi·lisʹtines was looking out of the window, and he saw Isaac displaying affection ("Yitzack"-ing) for Re·bekʹah his wife.

So we see who gets the last laugh in this story.

These examples could be multiplied, and for some, might even provide an incentive to learn Hebrew.

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14 minutes ago, AllenSmith said:

I understand people that you are inclined to support like Raymond Franz

I don't support Raymond Franz. I think he made some terrible mistakes.

14 minutes ago, AllenSmith said:

Then, if you people here are given undue reverence, and "protection" by the WorldNewMedia (Pete) owner, some people will think that you cannot be questioned, therefore, the discussion of the bible is also rendered invalid!!!!!

This might be true, too. If anyone is given undue reverence it can result in trouble. Although I don't know anything about who this "Pete" is, I'll take your word for it. By the way, I had three of my posts in a row deleted with no explanation a couple days ago, until I figured out that I was evidently helping to support "spam" by another member who was trying to promote a personal blog here. I actually found quite a bit in the blog that I wanted to discuss, but I kept referencing the source URL of the blog, which has become a kind of habit that was not considered useful in this case. I finally figured it out when I saw that the posts from the blogger had also been deleted.

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3 hours ago, Nana Fofana said:

But I say-  "Riiight .  That's why they don't use the present tense of the verb "to be" in Hebrew.  Sure thing, Brah."/ sarcasm

If you were trying to be sarcastic about it then why did you quote a source that agreed 100% with what I said?

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20 hours ago, AllenSmith said:

The only thing that is offered by you is gossip and opinions from your time at Bethel. How does that bring anyone into spiritual maturity if the very fiber scripture talks about, you go against? 

Were it not for the flood of hateful remarks directed at theocratic authority, I would most likely agree with you. But like pus from a wound, it is everywhere. Maybe there is a place for someone from us who spills the dirt before the scoundrels do.

Online there are endless persons who spill dirt on God's organization. Often it is true dirt, or it is based upon something true. 'No human is able to exercise perfect self-control,' today's Watchtower says. Same with other qualities. Therefore there will always be dirt. Opposers misrepresent and exaggerate and always always always impute wrong motive. Eventually, John Q Publisher comes across it, and because he has been exposed to not a hint of it, he is floored - and in many cases he swallows it along with the negative spin supplied - and the spiritual consequences are dire. Therefore it may not be a bad thing if someone spills dirt in a 'loyal' context. You could almost liken it to a vaccine - exposure to a little bit of the crap by a physician better prepares one for when they encounter it in the wild. At any rate, you can do nothing about it, so you may as well adapt.

I don't think it is great, either, but there may be a practical use to it. People spill all kinds of confidential stuff here. It amazed me at first. Then they say where there is secrecy there is tyranny. The remark is not completely wet, but it is misplaced. 'Confidential' is not the same as 'secret.' Nor is it the same as 'not intended for public distribution.' John gave the reason that not everything is intended for everyone, and it reveals no ill intent whatsoever. Quite the contrary. 'I have many things to say to you, but you are not yet ready to bear them,' Jesus said. "Oh yes we are," says everyone on this forum (including me). I can picture some (if they dared) combing through all the stuff Jesus held back so that they could post it online in order to to fill our 'right to know.' Still, since the liars abound,  'loyal' ones can put a proper spin on the dirt they reveal.

Though I don't like to see confidential things displayed online, they yet serve to strengthen general confidence in the organization God uses. Shiwiii, for example, posted that confidential letter in which Bethel reminded local publishers to donate timely. He was hoping I would be outraged at the greedy Watchtower. Instead, I feigned outrage at the greedy Bible writers, for it was clear everything the organization did was based upon scripture. Even when you don't like the general direction in which godly counsel is heading, you nonetheless have to concede that it is godly - supported scripturally - and thus you can ask yourself: 'to what degree am I willing to be 'taught by Jehovah?' even as the ones publishing it ask themselves the same question. 

I will go out on a limb here and risk being presumptuous, but I'm not sure the brothers know what to do with the pure deceit that is so readily spewed online by many. I think they probably reign in some instincts on how to respond because that is what the Bible says they should do. Maybe I should too, and others here. But we get clobbered by apostates and one wants to do something about it, if at all possible. "I am stronger than you, and I thank God for it," says Miss Pross to the wicked foreign woman who would cut her throat. She fights not for herself, but for someone to whom she is loyal. It is the first century playing out all over again. There is not a NT writer who does not deal with it. The apostate issue was fueled by same thing then as it is today: a contempt for authority. (Jude 8) It's hard to know how to deal with it. 

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5 hours ago, Nana Fofana said:

But I say-  "Riiight .  That's why they don't use the present tense of the verb "to be" in Hebrew.  Sure thing, Brah."/ sarcasm

Your focus was probably on the reason for this practice, which I gave as "because it is easily understood in most contexts without spelling it out." The source you gave didn't include any reason different from the one I gave, but this new answer referring to the idea of an Israeli chemistry teacher gives a different reason which is worth considering. He evidently said it was because as you said: " The word in Hebrew for existence is a form of the name of God, and is not used as it is in English." Then the person who made that comment added the link:

    Hello guest!
  which says nothing of the sort.

So we could easily consider whether the "zero copula" is due to this particular reason. One point to consider is that after reading the article 

    Hello guest!
we notice that there are many languages that do the same, including Arabic, Russian, Turkish, Japanese, Maori, Ganda, Irish, Welsh, ASL, and several Native American languages. Again it's mostly done for the present tense in these languages, too. There are several situations in which we follow this practice in English, too. And we surely don't do it because it's a form of God's name in Hebrew. And these languages with no relationship to Hebrew surely don't do it because of an issue in Hebrew or any similar issue in their own language.

It might also be worth considering that even when the name of God was spelled out in Hebrew at a time when there were no prejudices against using the name out loud, the zero copula was already in effect. We see this in at least 350 places in the Hebrew text. One obvious example is the twenty-third Psalm which says "Jehovah [blank] my shepherd I shall not want"  יְהוָה רֹעִי לֹא אֶחְסָֽר

So the practice could not very well have started because it is a form of God's name.

Even in the context of Exodus 3:12-15 the same practice is found:

It's found in the future tense in 3:12 and "famously" found in the present tense in 3:14, of course, but is left out of the surrounding verses:

  • (Exodus 3:13-15) 13 But Moses said to the true God: “Suppose I go to the Israelites and say to them, ‘The God of your forefathers has sent me to you,’ and they say to me, ‘What is [blank] his name?’ What should I say to them?”  . . . 15 Then God said once more to Moses: “This is [blank] what you are to say to the Israelites, ‘Jehovah the God of your forefathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has sent me to you.’ This is [blank] my name forever, and this is [blank] how I am to be [blank] remembered from generation to generation.

Wherever you see an italicized "am," is," or "are" in the OT of the KJV (hundreds of times) you are mostly likely seeing the "zero copula."

5 hours ago, Nana Fofana said:

And sorry if I was inappropriately sarcastic, which is actually pretty much guaranteed, since I'm still not sure if you said this, or what exactly you are saying.

I have no problem with sarcasm in general. It's not usually necessary, but can sometimes help to make a point. It was just that, in this case, you said you were using sarcasm to make a point different from mine,  and then immediately quoted someone who apparently agreed with me 100%, so the sarcasm lost its effect.

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1 hour ago, JW Insider said:

Wherever you see an italicized "am," is," or "are" in the OT of the KJV (hundreds of times) you are mostly likely seeing the "zero copula."

I always wondered about that. Thanks!

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2 hours ago, Nana Fofana said:

[I just saw video and I guess this is my way of saying I couldn't disagree more w/ what you've said about video.

This makes me wonder if we all watched the same film.....

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2 hours ago, AllenSmith said:

Did the apostles honestly believe they were “above” other Christians or Christ? Then why bring up a “false” allegation that somehow Witness are giving “undue reverence” to the Governing Body.

No the apostles did not honestly believe they were above Christ. Some did believe they should be above other Christians, even above each other, and Jesus counseled them about that. (Mark 10:35+) So why bring up a "false" allegation that somehow Witnesses are giving "undue reverence" to the Governing Body? Easy. Because the Watchtower said they were. If you don't believe the Watchtower's claim, take it up with them.

Did you think that the counsel in the 1/16 Study Watchtower was unnecessary?

*** w16 January p. 27 “We Want to Go With You” ***

  • At times, well-known representatives of the Christian congregation—perhaps circuit overseers, Bethelites, members of the Branch Committee, members of the Governing Body as well as their helpers—may attend a convention or theocratic event that we also attend.

64

The counsel given referred to the kind of attitudes matched in the picture above from the same article. Similar counsel was repeated again in the 3/17 Study Watchtower.

*** w17 March p. 9 par. 6 Give Honor to Whom It Is Due ***

  • Most imperfect humans are strongly influenced by the spirit of SatanÂ’s world. That is why people tend to idolize certain men or women rather than just show them appropriate honor and respect. They place religious and political leaders, sports figures, entertainment stars, and other celebrities on pedestals, often considering them to be almost superhuman. . . . However, JehovahÂ’s Witnesses refrain from treating religious leaders as ones who merit extraordinary honor, even though those leaders may expect it.

Due to the problem of people worshiping Charles Taze Russell as if they were in a cult, up until at least 1931, Rutherford did all he could to separate from that type of mentality and move that kind of adulation to the theocratic organization itself, rather than a human being. You may have already seen the discussion on this topic linked here:Charles Taze Russell: Was he recently "canonized"?

2 hours ago, AllenSmith said:

Now these so-called mistakes, by and large, are geared toward “prophecy”. . . . then, how can they claim the Watchtower to be in error?

The Watchtower itself claims that the Watchtower was in error (at one time or another) with respect to almost every prophecy they have ever attempted to explain. It's only the current version of the explanation of any of these same prophecies that is considered not to be in error, unless of course, they also go back to one of the previous explanations and say it was correct after all, which has also happened.

2 hours ago, AllenSmith said:

I read stipulations like, we must “confirm” for ourselves, what is told by the GB, is factual. That’s fine to a degree. What’s NOT fine, is the overzealous notion, that some, have to, “think” you understand scripture, better than those GOD, inspires and has entrusted (commissioned) to understand scripture for our “benefit”.

I'm sure you think yourself a good judge of what degree is "fine" and what degree is "NOT fine" in this regard. However, there is no scripture that says that God inspires, entrusts, or commissions the GB to understand scripture for our benefit. I accept that they do understand scripture for our benefit, but there is no such commission by God specifically for the GB to do this. We accept their leadership in this regard because it works for unity and peace and consistency in our teaching, which therefore allows for the efficient distribution of Bible-based publications with a common message we can all support whole-heartedly. Every religious group realizes that some can preside better, some can speak better, some can manage better, and some can teach better. Among true Christians today these are considered "gifts in men" where such ministries combine to help to maintain peace and unity in the worldwide congregation, just as they would in individual congregations. So there is nothing unbiblical and nothing wrong with accepting the services and benefits of a Governing Body. But they are not inspired and there is no Biblical commission for this specific group of brothers to teach and understand the Scriptures for us.

2 hours ago, AllenSmith said:

That in itself has NOTHING to do with the “anointing of the holy spirit” that we all share.

I am pretty sure I don't claim to share in the "anointing of the holy spirit" in the same way that you and others here might claim to share. This might not have been addressed to me, but since I chose to respond I thought I should clear up the fact that I certainly don't claim to be one of the 144,000 anointed.

I agree that there is more to say on these topics, but I think the info about God's name is more relevant to the topic at hand, so I'll bring those points up in my next post.

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6 hours ago, AllenSmith said:

If you did understand, then you would know that, while the common names for God have been stipulated as being, Yahweh, and then Jehovah by linguistic modifications made for the purpose of a better understanding with respect to “each” modern language? There has been a long time, new, ideology of God’s “real” name to be in the Tanakh, Anochi.

For how long a time has this info about Anochi been "new"? Otherwise, I agree with using either Yahweh or Jehovah, with preference for whatever people understand best in the context of communication. For us , this means "Jehovah" is best, in English, at least. Don't think I'll ever be using "Anochi" for either Jehovah or as some would say, for Jesus (in John 4:26 or 8:28 etc).

6 hours ago, AllenSmith said:

Under the prospects of Scholars, some have come to the conclusion that “Elohim” is not of the God of Israel, but a heathen deity. Those are the “facts” I deal with, when, debating with my scholarly counterparts.

Do you have a good answer for those who argue that EL was the name of the Most High Canaanite God, represented usually by a bull? The argument usually goes that they also had a "COUNCIL of GODS" called "The ELs" (GODs), or in their language and Hebrew: "ELOHIM" (plural). The COUNCIL of the Most High, EL, included GODs whose names were JEHOVAH, DAGON and BAAL, for example, depending on the nations/tribes governed by the Most High, EL. Temples to the Most High in the area of Canaan, Palestine, Israel, Judea, etc., would include images and sculptures of bulls. This is supposed to explain why the most valuable sacrifice to Jehovah was the bull.

  • (2 Chronicles 4:1-5) 4 Then he made the copper altar, 20 cubits long, 20 cubits wide, and 10 cubits high. 2 He made the Sea of cast metal.. . . It stood on 12 , 3 bulls facing north, 3 facing west, 3 facing south, and 3 facing east; and the Sea rested on them, and all their hindquarters were toward the center. 5 And its thickness was a handbreadth; and its brim was made like the brim of a cup, like a lily blossom. The reservoir could hold 3,000 bath measures.
  • (Numbers 23:22) 22 God is bringing them out of Egypt. He is like the horns of a wild bull for them.

  • (Deuteronomy 33:17) 17 His splendor is like that of a firstborn bull, And his horns are the horns of a wild bull. With them he will push peoples All together to the ends of the earth. They are the tens of thousands of Eʹphra·im, And they are the thousands of Ma·nasʹseh.”

  • *** it-1 pp. 374-375 Bull ***
    Bulls were offered in sacrifice by the Israelites (Ex 29; Le 22:27; Nu 7; 1Ch 29:21), and at certain times the Law specifically directed that bulls were to be sacrificed. If the high priest committed a sin that brought guiltiness upon the people, he was required to offer a bull, the largest and most valuable sacrificial victim, this undoubtedly in keeping with his responsible position as leader of Israel in true worship. A bull also had to be offered when the entire assembly of Israel made a mistake. (Le 4:3, 13, 14) On Atonement Day a bull was to be offered in behalf of the priestly house of Aaron. (Le 16) In the seventh month of their sacred calendar the Israelites were required to offer more than 70 bulls as burnt offerings.—Nu 29.

Of course, the primary argument that the Hebrew ELOHIM came from such a source is that the term in the plural came to refer to Jehovah who was ONE God. The ideas of EL and ELOHIM and MOST HIGH and the COUNCIL are supposedly seen in various scriptures such as the Psalm here:

  • (Psalm 89:5-14)  5 The heavens praise your marvels, O Jehovah, Yes, your faithfulness in the congregation of the holy ones.  6 For who in the skies can compare to Jehovah? Who among the sons of God is like Jehovah?  7 God is held in awe in the council of holy ones; He is grand and awe-inspiring to all who are around him.  8 O Jehovah God of armies, Who is mighty like you, O Jah? Your faithfulness surrounds you.  9 You rule over the raging of the sea; (2 Chron 4:2, above) When its waves surge, you calm them. . . . 12 The north and the south—you created them; Taʹbor and Herʹmon joyously praise your name. 13 Your arm is mighty; Your hand is strong; Your right hand is exalted. 14 Righteousness and justice are the foundation of your throne;. . . . (2 Chron 4:4, above: the four directions of the bulls)

By translating both EL and ELOHIM as God, it's possible to lose sight of the actual argument being made, so here's another take on another Psalm commented upon in Wikipedia, marked in "blue" below:

In the 

    Hello guest!
, there are multiple descriptions of 
    Hello guest!
 presiding over a great assembly of 
    Hello guest!
. Some interpret these assemblies as examples of Divine Council:

"The 

    Hello guest!
 description of the 'divine assembly' all suggest that this metaphor for the organization of the divine world was consistent with that of Mesopotamia and Canaan. One difference, however, should be noted. In the Old Testament, the identities of the members of the assembly are far more obscure than those found in other descriptions of these groups, as in their 
    Hello guest!
 environment. Israelite writers sought to express both the uniqueness and the superiority of their God Yahweh."
    Hello guest!

The 

    Hello guest!
states "God (אֱלֹהִ֔ים 
    Hello guest!
) stands in the divine assembly (בַּעֲדַת-אֵל ); He judges among the gods (אֱלֹהִ֔ים 
    Hello guest!
)" (אֱלֹהִים נִצָּב בַּעֲדַת־אֵל בְּקֶרֶב אֱלֹהִים יִשְׁפֹּט). The meaning of the two occurrences of "elohim" has been debated by scholars, with some suggesting both words refer to Yahweh, while others propose that the God of Israel rules over a divine assembly of other Gods or angels.
    Hello guest!
 Some translations of the passage render "God (elohim) stands in the congregation of the mighty to judge the heart as God (elohim)"
    Hello guest!
 (the Hebrew is "beqerev elohim", "in the midst of gods", and the word "qerev" if it were in the plural would mean "internal organs"
    Hello guest!
). Later in this Psalm, the word "gods" is used (in the KJV): Psalm 82:6 - "I have said, Ye [are] gods; and all of you [are] children of the most High." Instead of "gods", another version has "godlike beings",
    Hello guest!
 but here again, the word is elohim/elohiym (Strong's H430).
    Hello guest!
 This passage is quoted in the New Testament in John 10:34.
    Hello guest!

In the 

    Hello guest!
(1 Kings 22:19) the prophet 
    Hello guest!
 has a vision of Yahweh seated among "the whole host of heaven" standing on his right and on his left. He asks who will go entice 
    Hello guest!
 and a spirit volunteers. This has been interpreted as an example of a divine council.

The first two chapters of the 

    Hello guest!
 describe the "
    Hello guest!
" assembling in the presence of Yahweh. Like "multitudes of heaven", the term "Sons of God" defies certain interpretation. This assembly has been interpreted by some as another example of divine council. Others translate "Sons of God" as "angels", and thus argue this is not a divine council because angels are God's creation and not deities.

---end of Wikipedia quote---

But the curious issue of how to translate Deuteronomy also comes up here. For years, most translators found the Masoretic text preferable to the Septuagint because the Septuagint implied that people still remembered the Canaanite idea of a council of gods. (Not just Canaanite, but also Egyptian, Mesopotamian/Babylonian, etc.)

The NWT has:

  • (Deuteronomy 32:7-9)  7 Remember the days of old; Consider the years of past generations. Ask your father, and he can tell you; Your elders, and they will inform you.  8 When the Most High gave the nations their inheritance, When he divided the sons of Adam from one another, He fixed the boundary of the peoples With regard for the number of the sons of Israel.  9 For Jehovah’s people are his portion; Jacob is his inheritance.

But, after the Dead Sea Scrolls supported the Septuagint, the RSV, for example changed its translation from the Masoretic to say:

  • (Deuteronomy 32:7-9) Remember the days of old, consider the years of many generations; ask your father, and he will show you; your elders, and they will tell you. When the Most High gave to the nations their inheritance, when he separated the sons of men, he fixed the bounds of the peoples according to the number of the sons of God. For the LORD's portion is his people, Jacob his allotted heritage.

Also:

    • Hello guest!

    When the Most High assigned lands to the nations, when he divided up the human race, he established the boundaries of the peoples according to the number in his heavenly court.

      Hello guest!

    When the Most High gave to the nations their inheritance, when he divided mankind, he fixed the borders of the peoples according to the number of the sons of God.

      Hello guest!

    When the Most High gave nations as their inheritance, when he separated the human race, he set boundaries for the people according to the number of the children of God.

      Hello guest!

    When the Most High gave the nations their inheritance, when he divided up humankind, he set the boundaries of the peoples, according to the number of the heavenly assembly.
     

Commentaries had said that the LXX was probably corrupted because, as the Pulpit Commentary said:

  • From the very beginning, when God first allotted to the nations a place and a heritage, he had respect in his arrangements to the sons of Israel, who were his portion, and had as it were kept their interest in view in all that he appointed and ordered. According to the number of the children of Israel. When the Most High portioned out to the nations the heritage of each, he reserved for Israel, as the people of his choice, an inheritance proportioned to its numbers. The LXX. has "according to the number of the angels of God," an arbitrary departure from the original text, in accommodation, probably, to the later Jewish notion of each nation having its guardian angel.

The Canaanite idea was that the Most High divided the nations and gave a portion of the sons of men to each God of the Council. Baal got the Canaanites, and therefore Baal presided in the Council of EL as far as the Canaanites were concerned. Jehovah was given the sons of Israel, and therefore Jehovah presided in the Council of EL as far as the Israelites were concerned. To the Babylonians it was Shamash, the Sun, who presided in the Divine Council.

This "division" might have been said to have happened in the days of Peleg and was facilitated by the confusion of languages at the Tower of Babel, about the time of his generation:

  • (Genesis 10:25-11:9) 25 Two sons were born to Eʹber. The name of the one was Peʹleg, because in his lifetime the earth [earth's population] was divided. The name of his brother was Jokʹtan. 26 . . .  all of these were the sons of Jokʹtan. 30 Their place of dwelling extended from Meʹsha as far as Seʹphar, the mountainous region of the East. 31 These were the sons of Shem according to their families and their languages, by their lands and their nations. . . . 11:1 Now all the earth continued to be of one language and of one set of words. . . .  They now said: “Come! Let us build a city for ourselves and a tower with its top in the heavens, and let us make a celebrated name for ourselves, so that we will not be scattered over the entire face of the earth.” . . So Jehovah scattered them from there over the entire face of the earth, and they gradually left off building the city. 9 That is why it was named Baʹbel, because there Jehovah confused the language of all the earth, and Jehovah scattered them from there over the entire face of the earth.

Some have tied this idea of each nation getting a guardian angel to the "watchers" of the books of non-canonical Enoch and canonical portions of Daniel. This is why Michael is the guardian archangel of Israel, and other nations have their own guardian angels. This relates to a question that @Anna asked recently on this forum. https://www.theworldnewsmedia.org/topic/47150-why-do-we-understand-the-prince-of-persia-in-daniel-1013-to-be-a-wicked-angeldemon/?tab=comments#comment-69704

 

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2 hours ago, JW Insider said:

Some have tied this idea of each nation getting a guardian angel to the "watchers" of the books of non-canonical Enoch and canonical portions of Daniel. This is why Michael is the guardian archangel of Israel, and other nations have their own guardian angels. This relates to a question that @Anna asked recently on this forum . https://www.theworldnewsmedia.org/topic/47150-why-do-we-understand-the-prince-of-persia-in-daniel-1013-to-be-a-wicked-angeldemon/?tab=comments#comment-69704

Thanks for drawing my attention to that question as I forgot all about it and never even noticed an answer there from @Gone Fishing

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4 minutes ago, TrueTomHarley said:

There! It was a like. A real genuine grade A honest-to-goodness like. Don't ever say it wasn't.

See, there you go again, always weaseling your way out! Because that like doesn't count.And have you watched the video yet?

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17 minutes ago, TrueTomHarley said:
31 minutes ago, Anna said:

And have you watched the video yet?

Well, no. But I'll get to it.

That's good. I'm interested in how you understand it, since we already have several people's take on it. Of course you need to be fair and unbiased, and there is no need to be diplomatic and defensive, since this is not from the society. Not officially anyway.

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On 10/26/2017 at 11:31 AM, Anna said:

, Nehemiah Gordon is a Karaite Rabbi (never heard of the Karaite Jews, very interesting)

Hi Anna!   Just a friendly correction to the above statement.  Nehemiah Gordon is indeed a Karaite Jew (Kara means scripture) but not a Rabbi.  His father is an orthodox Rabbi but Karaites do not recognize the Rabbinical system.  They would be considered fundamentalist using scripture only and they do use God's name as required by scripture.  I have enjoyed listening to his point of view and have learned quite a lot from him and have read his book:  The Hebrew Yeshua vs the Greek Jesus.  He has a likable personality and remains quite neutral in discussions cautious of not promoting one religion over another.  He is well educated in the Hebrew language (both ancient and modern) but remains a humble man.   He was associated with an American pastor named Keith Johnson but I think they have gone their separate ways now (which is good).  Wishing you blessings - SuziQ1513

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1 hour ago, AllenSmith said:

I mentioned this already, so, what problem do you see with the Watchtowers rendition of known facts?

I don't see any problem with the Watchtower's rendition of known facts. The Watchtower has never addressed the arguments that some scholars bring up with respect to Elohim as it has been related to a Divine Council. I thought you were saying you had addressed this with scholars, so I was interested. What you responded to above is not the same issue. I suspect we agree on all most issues related to God's name -- assuming you agree with the Watchtower's general view on the topic.

Probably the only area where we might differ is how we defend the inconsistent method of the NWT using Jehovah for kyrios in the Greek when it is not a quote or direct allusion to the Hebrew Scriptures.

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10 hours ago, AllenSmith said:

I find the Watchtowers research in the matter of “El/Elohim” to be satisfactory. There’s NO reason to go beyond the research conducted by the Watchtower, that many “modern” scholars have come to the same conclusion.

The Watchtower never mentions the Canaanite or Ugaritic texts with respect to ELOHIM, or the Divine Council of EL, although it does refer to these texts with respect to EL (the Bull; or "Father Bull"). Our references never mention that YAHWEH was considered to be one of the sons of EL, just as BAAL was another son of EL. A couple of intriguing points are made in the Insight book, however:

*** it-1 pp. 976-977 Gods and Goddesses ***

  • Canaanite Deities. Extrabiblical sources indicate that the god El was considered to be the creator and sovereign. Although El seems to have been somewhat remote from earthly affairs, he is repeatedly shown as being approached by the other deities with requests. . . . In the Ras Shamra texts El is referred to as “father bull” and is represented as having gray hair and a gray beard. His consort was Asherah, who is referred to as the progenitress of the gods, whereas El is placed in the role of progenitor of the gods. . . . Most prominent of the Canaanite gods, however, was the fertility god Baal, a deity of the sky and of rain and storm. (Jg 2:12, 13) In the Ras Shamra texts, Baal is often called the son of Dagon, though El is also spoken of as his father. Baal’s sister Anath is shown referring to El as her father and he, in turn, calls her his daughter. Hence, Baal probably was regarded as the son of El, though he may also have been viewed as El’s grandson. In the mythological accounts Baal is depicted as assaulting and triumphing over Yamm, the god who presided over the water and who seems to have been El’s favorite or beloved son. But Baal is slain in his conflict with Mot, who was viewed as a son of El and the god of death and aridity. Thus, Canaan, like Babylon, had its god who died a violent death and thereafter was restored to life.—See BAAL No. 4. . . . Hence, at times Asherah and then again Ashtoreth may have been regarded as wives of Baal.—Jg 2:13; 3:7; 10:6; 1Sa 7:4; 12:10; 1Ki 18:19

We spoke of the Mesha stele as being the oldest extant mention of YHWH from about 890 B.C.E. Some of the next oldest extant mentions of the divine name YHWH are from Kuntillet Ajrud about which Wikipedia says the following:

  • (
      Hello guest!
    : كونتيلة عجرود‎‎) is a late 9th/early 8th centuries BCE site in the northeast part of the 
      Hello guest!
    .
      Hello guest!
     It is frequently described as a shrine, though this is not certain.
      Hello guest!

    The inscriptions are mostly in early Hebrew with some in 

      Hello guest!
     script.
      Hello guest!
     Many are religious in nature, invoking 
      Hello guest!
    , 
      Hello guest!
     and 
      Hello guest!
    , and two include the phrases "Yahweh of 
      Hello guest!
     and his 
      Hello guest!
    " and "Yahweh of 
      Hello guest!
     and his Asherah."
      Hello guest!
     There is general agreement that Yahweh is being invoked in connection with Samaria (capital of the 
      Hello guest!
    ) and Teman (in 
      Hello guest!
    ); this suggests that Yahweh had a temple in Samaria, and raises a question over the relationship between Yahweh and 
      Hello guest!
    , the national god of 
      Hello guest!
    .
      Hello guest!
     The "Asherah" is most likely a cultic object, although the relationship of this object (a stylised tree perhaps) to Yahweh and to the goddess Asherah, consort of El, is unclear.
      Hello guest!

    An image on the piece of pottery (belonging to a 

      Hello guest!
     vase) found at Kuntillet Ajrud is adjacent to a Hebrew inscription "Berakhti etkhem l’YHVH Shomron ul’Asherato" ("I have blessed you by Yahweh of Samaria and [his] Asherah").

The connection to the false gods of Canaan and surrounding areas are to be expected, based on the Bible's continuous warnings to the Hebrews about the influence of false gods. The shared language of the region probably facilitated such syncretism, too. For example, the Insight book mentions Yamm, the god of the Sea. The Hebrew word for sea was also Yam. The Insight book mentions Mot as the god of death. The Hebrew word for Death is also Mot. The Mesopotamiam Sun-god was Shamash, the Hebrew word for sun was Shemesh.

But there is also a sense that gods could rise to the Most High of the "Council of Gods" (ELOHIM) and effectively replace EL. EL himself supposedly killed his father to reach this position, per the Insight book. Insight implies what some scholars have said: DAGON for a time might have been seen as the new EL making BAAL the son of DAGON rather than just the son of EL. This may also be an indication that as any god was seen to be the most powerful and ascendant, he became the "ONLY GOD" and that GOD becomes the MOST HIGH, therefore the ruler of the COUNCIL. Even in the Bible, the term MOST HIGH, does not just imply "The Most High over all the earth" but over all the other [non-existent, imagined] gods of other nations. (Psalm 77:13) ". . .What god is as great as you, O God?"  Poetically, at least, the Hebrews could still imagine a heavenly scene reminiscent of the common view of a "Divine Council of Gods."

  • (Psalm 82:1-8) God [ELOHIM] takes his place in the divine assembly [literally, "Council of EL"]; In the middle of the gods [ELOHIM] he judges:  2 “How long will you continue to judge with injustice And show partiality to the wicked? (Selah)  3 Defend the lowly and the fatherless. Render justice to the helpless and destitute.  4 Rescue the lowly and the poor; Save them out of the hand of the wicked.”  5 They do not know, nor do they understand; They are walking about in darkness; All the foundations of the earth are being shaken.  6 “I have said, ‘You are gods, All of you are sons of the Most High.  7 But you will die just as men do; And like any other prince you will fall!’”  8 Rise up, O God, and judge the earth, For all the nations belong to you.

It's possible, of course, to make these "gods" simply powerful men who are judges, but then you have the problem of verse 7 which says that these "men" are going to die just as "men" do. And, of course, Jesus invokes verse 6 as a way of showing that he has every right to call himself the "Son of God" because the Father sanctified him and sent into the world from heaven. The Christian view is, of course, clarified here:

  • (1 Corinthians 8:4-6) . . ., we know that an idol is nothing in the world and that there is no God but one. 5 For even though there are so-called gods, whether in heaven or on earth, just as there are many “gods” and many “lords,” 6 there is actually to us one God, the Father, from whom all things are and we for him; and there is one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom all things are and we through him.

So, our position on all of this is very clear, and I'm sure we are in agreement about it. I was only asking if you had found points that are useful in countering the claims of too much similarity. I think Mormons have embraced some of these similarities, but they are obviously foreign to core Hebrew and Christian concepts.

The points you copied above that are found on the site:

    Hello guest!
are very interesting. I see that this source is in agreement with some of the points we have brought up before, but the source also takes some liberties that might not be warranted.

The book you have pictured deals with a very similar theme of syncretism in early Christianity. In both cases these questions are likely dealt with improperly by most authors. The book you reference apparently treats the subject in a way that I find awkward based on a publisher's description (below). I know nothing about this book, except from excerpts I have just looked at today, but wonder what relevant information you might have learned from it. There is nothing relevant or useful on the pages you chose to copy. (I'm assuming you might have read more of it.)

  • In Kyrios Christos, Wilhelm Bousset argues that the Hellenistic Church's declaration of "Jesus as Lord" is a transformation of the pre-Christian Judaic community's understanding of Jesus as the Son of Man. This unique distinction between the primitive Palestinian community and Hellenistic Christianity reveals how the earliest Christian beliefs were informed by existing religious influences.

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On 10/26/2017 at 1:37 PM, Anna said:

You have to watch the video @TrueTomHarley

As stated, such things interest me only to a degree. I will eventually get to it, once a project or two is out of the way.

I could spin this all in 'self-righteous' mode if I wanted to - that I am actually applying Christianity while others merely endlessly debate over it. Sometimes in my heart of hearts I entertain that thought. But a scenario just as likely is that they are smarter than me and are able to do both without breaking a sweat.

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2 hours ago, AllenSmith said:

It seems you want to slow walk me into an epiphany, your point being is?o.O

Same as always. As I said: I thought you were saying you had addressed this with scholars, so I was interested.

I was interested in whether you had run across some useful information that either debunks the connections that several scholars have made, or perhaps put them in a more understandable light. You quoted from some sources that, as far as I can see, just take us further down into the same connections I was hoping to avoid, so I have my doubts that any of these sources can help. But I try keep an open mind. Which is why I was interested in your take on this.

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16 hours ago, SuziQ1513 said:

 Just a friendly correction to the above statement.  Nehemiah Gordon is indeed a Karaite Jew (Kara means scripture) but not a Rabbi. 

Thank you Suzi! I was actually wondering about that. My bad, I misinterpreted what I read in Wikipedia about him. He was born to Jewish family of rabbis. Which of course doesn't mean he is a rabbi himself, and it didn't make sense after I read what the Karaites stand for. That they do not believe in the Oral Torah like the rabbis do.

16 hours ago, SuziQ1513 said:

have learned quite a lot from him and have read his book:

I will have to try and get a hold of it, sounds very interesting. A while ago I was also looking at a website, and I wish I could remember what they were called, I don't think they were karaites, but maybe some other Jewish "sect" who are anti Zionists, in that they believe Christ will rule from Jerusalem, but not thanks to any human political events and human intervention of the return of the Jews to Jerusalem, but only through the literal coming of the Messiah and through God's intervention, not human. Sort of similar to what we believe except for the physical presence aspect. They feel that when he does come, they will be able to identify him, through genealogical records (this was a debate I wanted to have with one of the Rabbis, since all those records no longer exist, but didn't get around to it). Anyway, that was a bit beside the point, just interesting.....Interesting to note that so many Religions (Christendom and Judaism) have grains of Biblical truth, just all muddled up and inconsistent.....

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4 hours ago, TrueTomHarley said:

But a scenario just as likely is that they are smarter than me and are able to do both without breaking a sweat.

I know what you mean. I mean, I feel the same way about me, lol

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On 10/25/2017 at 1:30 PM, Anna said:

It is to be noted that both Rolf Furuli and Gerard Gertroux are both Jehovah's Witnesses.

Don't know how long Gerard Gertoux has been a Witness, but two years ago I was asked to look over a paper (thesis-length) he had written on chronology. I went to get it about a year later and all the links had this item removed, but no others. Fortunately there was still a roundabout way to get a copy. I think this is his most complete work on chronology and it's excellent and comprehensive but it "demolishes" any chance that he could have believed 607 was the date for destruction of Jerusalem, at least at the time he wrote the paper. It was actually a very good paper, and I don't really know why it was removed from so many places. (I can guess, of course, but I could be wrong.) The next time the subject comes up, I'll be happy to quote at length from his paper, although I would respect his wish not to quote directly from it, if this is his wish.

Does anyone here have a current contact for him? If so, please PM me. Does he frequent any forums that anyone here knows about?

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@Anna, BTW, I only commented up until near the first half of this. There are things in the second half I found to be just as bad. But I didn't want to spoil anyone else's chance to comment first.

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45 minutes ago, JW Insider said:

@Anna, BTW, I only commented up until near the first half of this. There are things in the second half I found to be just as bad. But I didn't want to spoil anyone else's chance to comment first.

That's ok, because I only watched half of it! lol (Don't tell True Tom though)

I will watch the other half and see what I find...

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52 minutes ago, JW Insider said:

I think this is his most complete work on chronology and it's excellent and comprehensive but it "demolishes" any chance that he could have believed 607 was the date for destruction of Jerusalem, at least at the time he wrote the paper.

Ha!

As you saw in the video, he and Furuli contradicted each other several times.....:S

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56 minutes ago, Anna said:

That's ok, because I only watched half of it! lol (Don't tell True Tom though)

Sooooooo! 

"You must see it, TrueTom. Did you see it yet? How bout now?

"Well, when you gonna see it? C'mon! Prove that you're a spiritual man. See it!!!"

And now it turns out it's so dull you couldn't plow through it yourself! :) I'm even going to like my own comment!

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39 minutes ago, AllenSmith said:

When you give “scholars” more authority than GOD. What does that tell the world?

I've never accused you of giving "scholars" more authority than God just because you often quote scholarly authorities who contradict the Governing Body in almost every way possible. That includes the "Kyrios Christos" book you just introduced above as an "example" which says basically that the New Testament was influenced by false religion. And I've never accused the Governing Body of giving "scholars" more authority than God just because they use and quote outside scholars, too, but usually in a much more judicious manner than several of your recent examples.

You include in your answer that Jesus was explicitly referring to the Pharisees and applying the verse as if he were saying that the Pharisees themselves were gods. I think this goes beyond any claim in the Watch Tower publications, which seem carefully worded to avoid this same implication. Note:

*** si p. 196 par. 19 Bible Book Number 43—John ***

  • In answer to their charge of blasphemy, he reminds them that in the book of Psalms, certain mighty ones of earth are referred to as “gods,” whereas he has referred to himself as God’s Son. (Ps. 82:6) He urges them at least to believe his works.—John 10:34.

Other than your wildly inaccurate personal accusations, however, I found several parts of your answer to be useful, which is why I have given you another "up-vote." Thanks.

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Guest J.R. Ewing

Since you got a disingenuous up-vote? I’ll give you a disingenuous down-vote, so TTH can once again, be regaled by his friend.

Not to mention all the comparisons made, to the early Bible Students and the Tower.

WT.png

No love lost, ah!

xD

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1 hour ago, AllenSmith said:

That's why I place "zero" value in up-votes. You can remove it!

Curious. I've often wondered why Bible Speaks and Queen Esther and, to a much lesser extent, "you and yours" engage in self-up-voting. (TTH did this at least once, too.) But I agree that they are of zero value. There is a whole generation of people today who seem to live and die (sometimes literally) over the concept of digital approval. Facebook had to get rid of the down-vote because it caused the break-up of so many real and "social" friends. 

But the up-vote is still useful as a way to react to a good or funny comment, or express appreciation for the good and useful research that has gone into comments. You have received at least a dozen from me for the latter reason; probably a couple of them are in this very topic. I don't believe I have ever given a down-vote.

So credit where credit is due. I don't see any reason to remove it.

1 hour ago, AllenSmith said:

However, you're mistaken when you assert not pitting scholars over the GB.

I hope not. I didn't think you were doing it on purpose. I just thought you sometimes saw a book with an impressive sounding title and assumed that the book supported something the GB was saying before you read the actual book. I have access to JSTOR and a lot of the full books you have referenced through a university alumni account. So, you probably don't know how much time I've nearly "wasted" trying to give you the benefit of the doubt.

1 hour ago, AllenSmith said:

Then you would, in essence, be voiding all your arguments placed over the years about 607BC and your agreement with COJ's assessment with his scholar's view, about the Watchtower doctrine.

Curious, again. You have usually been more careful to always deny that COJ had a scholar's view. I wonder if you would consider Gerard Gertoux to be a scholar. A few minutes ago, I just emailed him, asking for his permission to quote and discuss his view on the chronology of the destruction of Jerusalem. He appears to agree with COJ that the date must be either 587 or 586, not 607 BCE. The purpose of the email was also to double-check if it is still his current view.

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4 minutes ago, AllenSmith said:

having NO formal higher education to substantiate his accusations

Yes, I understand the all-important emphasis that you and opposers put on "higher education." But Gerard Gertoux DOES have formal higher education. How can we explain his agreement with COJ with regard to chronology?

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You all may have seen this, but it is a useful list of books, either written by JWs or supportive of JW views (but not necessarily in everything). They range from scholarly to children's stories.  @TrueTomHarley you should get your book on the list there!

    Hello guest!

I don't know how up to date this list is, because as far as I know, at least one of the authors is no longer a Witness (Greg Stafford), but he was at the time of writing his book.

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Guest J.R. Ewing

Those working with darkness will never see the light.  John 8:12

JW.png

1 John 1:5-9New International Version (NIV)

Light and Darkness, Sin and Forgiveness

5 This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light; in him there is no darkness at all. 6 If we claim to have fellowship with him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live out the truth. 7 But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all[

    Hello guest!
] sin.

8 If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.

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11 minutes ago, Anna said:

I don't know how up to date this list is, because as far as I know, at least one of the authors is no longer a Witness, but he was at the time of writing his book.

I saw that too. In the explanation at the top he says that the Yes/No in the box refers only to the time when they wrote the book:

  • I have indicated whether each book was written by a brother or not at the time that the book was released

 

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Just now, JW Insider said:

I saw that too. In the explanation at the top he says that the Yes/No in the box refers only to the time when they wrote the book:

  • I have indicated whether each book was written by a brother or not at the time that the book was released

 

Yes, I've just noticed that, lol. I actually went and read his preface after I posted the link. I'm so disorganized!

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5 minutes ago, AllenSmith said:

I wouldn’t know. I received my doctorates without a problem, and I disagree with COJ’s assessment. But, you keep insisting Gerard Gertoux is still a witness, but then again, you claim, the same!

Actually, I have never insisted. Are you saying that if he himself claims to be a JW that you might not believe him? By the way, I did just get a response from him, and he preferred that I only use only one particular article of his when discussing 587/6 BCE. He says:

  • "To avoid any controversy on this controversial subject you can quote my article 'Basic astronomy for historians to get a chronology' . . . [link] . . . which was validated by Professor Hermann Hunger who is a reference in Babylonian astronomy."

[Thanks to the person who gave me his most recent email address. I had tried the same one before without a response, but it is still correct. I received the above response a few minutes ago.]

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With reference to the current topic at hand, Gertoux had already said the following about the film, indicating that it was made "from this article" and from "the simplified version of the book" on this subject.

  • God's name: readable but unpronounceable, why?
  • Fritz Poppenberg a German filmaker made a DVD from this article (
      Hello guest!
    ) which is available for free on youtube
      Hello guest!
    The understanding of God's name YHWH is so controversial that it is eventually the controversy of controversies, or the ultimate controversy. Indeed, why most of competent Hebrew scholars propagate patently false explanations about God's name? Why do the Jews refuse to read God's name as it is written and read Adonay "my Lord" (a plural of majesty) instead of it? Why God's name is usually punctuated e,â (shewa, qamats) by the Masoretes what makes its reading impossible, because the 4 consonants of the name YHWH must have at least 3 vowels (long or short) to be read, like the words ’aDoNâY and ’eLoHîM "God" (a plural of majesty), which have 4 consonants and 3 vowels? At last, why the obvious reading "Yehowah", according to theophoric names, which all begin by Yehô-, without exception, is so despised, and why the simple biblical meaning, "He will be" from Exodus 3:14, is rejected.

 

    • Hello guest!
  • Fritz Poppenberg a German filmaker made a DVD from the simplified version of the book (
      Hello guest!
    ) which is available for free on youtube
      Hello guest!
    . . . [the remainder of this paragraph is exactly the same as the above].

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On 10/26/2017 at 8:31 PM, JW Insider said:

Just had to comment on the point at 23:55 in the video: "In a well-known Bible translation we can read, 'I shall prove to be what I shall prove to be.' " The video won't say, of course, what translation this is, but we already know it's the old NWT:

  • (Exodus 3:14) At this God said to Moses: “I SHALL PROVE TO BE WHAT I SHALL PROVE TO BE.” And he added: “This is what you are to say to the sons of Israel, ‘I SHALL PROVE TO BE has sent me to YOU.’”

 

 

"I shall prove to be what I shall prove to be" is a literal translation of eyyeh-asher-ehyeh.  Nehemiah Gordon, a Karaite Jew and a Dead Sea Scroll researcher translates it that way directly from his Hebrew bible.   The translation is not a JW exclusive. 

 

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      Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. , a spirit realm outside the physical heavens and is not omnipresent or "residing" in a human's heart.
      "Jehovah" at Exodus 6:3(1611 King James Version)
      Jehovah /dʒɨˈhoʊvə/ is a Latinization of the Hebrew יְהֹוָה, a vocalization of the Tetragrammaton יהוה (YHWH), the proper name of the God of Israel in the Hebrew Bible, which has also been transcribed as "Yehowah" or "Yahweh". יְהֹוָה appears 6,518 times in the traditional Masoretic Text, in addition to 305 instances of יֱהֹוִה (Jehovih).The earliest available Latin text to use a vocalization similar to Jehovah dates from the 13th century. 
      Relationship of Jehovah with the rest of the Universe
      Think of Jehovah as the Architect of the Universe and Jesus Christ as his "Master Builder" (Proverbs chapter 😎 through whom everything else was created. His first Creation was Jesus Christ himself Billions of years ago before the physical universe ever existed.

      Michael the Archangel (later called Jesus Christ) used God's Holy Spirit in order to create our Universe and later perform miracles related in the Gospels. All energy in the Universe sources with Jehovah God's Holy Spirit and later the exalted and enthroned Jesus Christ enthroned as King would be given "Life within himself" thereby also being given immortality and having his own spirit. (source needed) See also
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      By Guest
    • By Bible Speaks
      Would You Walk on this Iceberg?
      Amazing Photo! Amazing God! 
      “Jehovah answered Job out of the windstorm:  2 “Who is this who is obscuring my counsel
      And speaking without knowledge?  3 Brace yourself, please, like a man;
      I will question you, and you inform me.  4 Where were you when I founded the earth?
      Tell me, if you think you understand.  5 Who set its measurements, in case you know,
      Or who stretched a measuring line across it?  6 Into what were its pedestals sunk,
      Or who laid its cornerstone,  7 When the morning stars joyfully cried out together,
      And all the sons of God began shouting in applause?
      22 Have you entered the storehouses of the snow,
      Or have you seen the storehouses of the hail,
      23 Which I have reserved for the time of distress,
      For the day of battle and war?"
      (Job 38:1-7, 22-23). 
      JW.Org
      #Repost @ladzinski
      ・・・
      Being stuck out at sea among the icebergs and sea ice can make you pretty restless and uneasy. Last July on an expedition in south east greenland we spent 6 days marooned in an ice flow at the mercy of the elements. @mikelibecki and @ethan_pringle seen here getting in a little exercise, jumping ship to climb this #iceberg. My favorite thing about this photograph is that this was Ethan’s first time ever wearing crampons and ice climbing, a very unlikely place for a lesson! @andy_mann @connor_seybert @3stringsproductions @mountainhardwear @dell @djigloba

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      By Guest
      C'est moi le Potier dit Jéhovah Dieu 
      Tu es mon vase d'argile ! C'est moi qui t'ai modelé, façonné, 
      Une merveille au creux de ma main. 
      Tu n’es pas encore achevé, tu es en train de prendre la "forme" de mon Fils. 
      Voici que tu te désoles et que tu désespères 
      Parce que tu as pris quelques fêlures au contact des autres. 
      Tu t'es heurté, tu as été ébréché 
      Tu as même pu tomber par terre, te briser et tomber en mille morceaux 
      Fêlures, éraflures, lézardes, brisures, cassures, ratures... 
      N'oublie pas, c'est ta condition de vase. 
      Si je t'avais rangé dans un placard à vaisselle 
      Tu ne connaîtrais pas ces heurts de la vie 
      Mais tu ne servirais à rien ni à personne, tu serais un vase inutile ! 
      Moi, dit Dieu, j'aime les vieux vases, un peu usés, un peu ébréchés. 
      Ils ont toute une histoire, et toi, tu voudrais être lisse comme un nouveau-né ? 
      Je te connais, ô toi que j'ai façonné, pétri avec tant d'amour 
      Je ne voudrais pas que tu te désoles de tes ratées 
      Tu es fait de boue et de lumière, tu es fait pour servir ! 
      A ne regarder que tes failles, tes faiblesses et tes chutes 
      Tu te centres encore trop sur toi-même 
      Et tu restes prisonnier de tes failles ! 
      C'est moi le Potier et je m'y connais dans l'art de reprendre un vase. Laisse-toi faire ! 
      Avec mes doigts d’artiste, j'arrive toujours à rendre plus beau ce qui n'était que fêlure, brisure, cassure. 
      Je suis l’Esprit Créateur, ne l'oublie pas. Je crée ! Je mets la vie ! Je donne le souffle ! 
      Je suis le Potier ! C'est moi qui moule, qui pétris, qui donne la "forme" 
      Toi, mon vase d'argile, Viens te glisser au creux de mes mains paternelles et maternelles 
      Laisse-toi pétrir entre mes doigts d'artiste. 
      Abandonne-toi longuement à mon travail de potier. 
      Expose-moi tes fêlures, tes brisures, tes cassures ! J'aime faire du neuf, j'aime te regarder 
      Voici que je te réchauffe, ô toi mon argile 
      A force de te pétrir, je te communique ma chaleur, ma sueur, 
      mon souffle, mon intimité, ma chaude tendresse. 
      C'est moi le Potier, viens et n'aie plus peur. 
      Chaque fois que tu retombes dans ces fautes que tu ne voudrais pas commettre 
      Je te dis : Le pardon est là ! 
      Viens et continuons ensemble 
      J’aime te regarder, voir les efforts que tu fais et tout le mal que tu te donnes. 
      J'en éprouve grande joie et tu réjouis mon cœur 
      Je vois combien tu te transformes. 
      A l'abri de tes regards Je te modèle 
      A l'image du Fils bien-Aimé 
      Tout ce que je te demande 
      C'est de venir toujours et à nouveau après chaque chute 
      Entre mes mains pour me donner la joie de te remodeler. 
      Allons, n'aie pas peur       C'est moi le Potier 
    • By JOHN BUTLER
      "All Scripture is inspired of God and beneficial for teaching, for reproving, for setting things straight, for disciplining in righteousness,"
      2 Timothy 3 v 16
      Was this in it's way a small prophecy ?                 
      The 2nd book of Timothy was written 65 C.E.  However 1,2,3, John and Revelation were written much later.
      So we have two points, 1. The writings were not complete when Paul wrote that information. 2, The Bible had not been constructed so no idea would have been formed as to what the Bible would contain. 
      Were there other writings ? Would they be considered as Scripture? 
      It seems that Paul was inspired to write that "All scripture is inspired.... " 
       
    • By JOHN BUTLER
      The JW Org / GB say that Armageddon is very close. They also say that Jehovah is speeding up the work in these 'last days'.
      Now, it seems I'm not one for knowing truth from lies, so people keep telling me, but this webpage/site seemed interesting to me.
       It seems to show more of a decrease in JW's, but more importantly it seems to show more of a lack of faith, or lack of action / 'works' of JW's. It also shows a large number of people leaving the JW Org. 
      If this video or page has been used before then I apologise for any repeat. But I thought it was of interest. 

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    • Guest Nicole
    • By JW Insider
      I have recently, just today, communicated again with Gerard Gertoux requesting permission to quote extensive long passages from his book on this topic as a basis for a more in-depth forum discussion. The Amazon link to his book is here:
      The Name of God Y.eH.oW.aH Which is pronounced as it is Written I_Eh_oU_Ah
      A subset of that same material is also found here:
      http://areopage.net/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/08/Gertoux_UseNameEarlyChristians.pdf
      Gerard Gertoux has responded that it would be better to use  https://www.academia.edu/14029315 as it is a free version that all of us can download, and it has no copyright.
      Since this topic comes up now and then, under various topic headings, I hope that some might find it useful to understand the basics of his argument. He assumes a lot of background and expertise that many do not have, but the material is accessible enough so that we can all learn a lot about the topic and even about the related background material at the same time.
      Out of respect for the author's wishes, let's not make extensive quotes from the book or the "areopage.net" link above except where fair use might allow. And even the "academia.edu" content should only be quoted in reasonable portions to the extent that it is needed for discussion. I have also mentioned to the author that I will do my best to keep the topic from devolving into a discussion of the Trinity. I will try to keep the discussion on topic, which also means that it should not become a free-for-all with critiques of the New World Translation or the persons who may have worked on it.
      The topic will not revolve only around Gerard Gertoux's writing, but it's a good place to start. Feel free to bring in evidence from other authors and researchers if it is related to the questions. As a reminder the evidence we discuss should focus especially on the following questions:
      Did Jesus and the apostles and disciples of the first century use the Divine Name? Did they read it aloud when they came to it in the OT Scriptures? Did they include it (and therefore expect it to be used aloud) in the writings of the NT? [And, of course, feel free to use the terms OT and NT as abbreviations for "Hebrew Scriptures" and "Christian Greek Scriptures" respectively.]
    • By The Librarian
      1934 Jehovah.mp3
      Talk by Judge Rutherford
       
      Part of the archive:
       
    • By The Librarian
      Part of a series on:
       
      ALMIGHTY.
      Heb., Shad·dai′, plural to denote excellence, occurs 41 times and is translated “Almighty” or “Almighty One.” (Ge 49:25; Ps 68:14) The corresponding word in the Christian Greek Scriptures is Pan·to·kra′tor and means “Almighty,” or, “Ruler Over All; One Who Has All Power.” (2Co 6:18; Re 15:3) The expression ʼEl Shad·dai′, “God Almighty,” occurs seven times in M and indicates that Jehovah has irresistible power.—Ge 17:1; Ex 6:3.
      ANCIENT OF DAYS.
      Aram., ʽAt·tiq′ Yoh·min′, meaning “One Advanced [or, Aged] in Days.”—Da 7:9, 13, 22.
       
      CREATOR. 
      Heb., Boh·reʼ′. (Isa 40:28; 42:5) GRAND CREATOR.—Ec 12:1.
       
      FATHER. 
      Heb., ʼAv; Gr., Pa·ter′; Lat., Pa′ter; as Creator (Isa 64:8); as giver of everlasting life to all those who exercise faith. (Joh 5:21) The expression “Holy Father” is used exclusively with reference to Jehovah.—Joh 17:11. Compare Mt 23:9.
      GOD. 
      Heb., ʼEl, without the definite article, probably meaning “Mighty One; Strong One.”—Ge 14:18.
       
      GOD. 
      Heb., ʼEloh′ah, singular of ʼElo·him′, without the definite article. It occurs 41 times in Job and 16 times in other books.—Job 3:4.
      GOD. 
      Heb., ʼElo·him′, without the definite article. In The American Journal of Semitic Languages and Literatures, Vol. XXI, Chicago and New York, 1905, p. 208, Aaron Ember wrote: “That the language of the O[ld] T[estament] has entirely given up the idea of plurality in אלהים [ʼElo·him′] (as applied to the God of Israel) is especially shown by the fact that it is almost invariably construed with a singular verbal predicate, and takes a singular adjectival attribute. . . . אלהים [ʼElo·him′] must rather be explained as an intensive plural, denoting greatness and majesty, being equal to The Great God. It ranks with the plurals אדנים [ʼadho·nim′, “master”] and בעלים [beʽa·lim′, “owner; lord”], employed with reference to human beings.” ʼElo·him′ draws attention to Jehovah’s strength as the Creator and occurs 35 times in the creation account.—Ge 1:1-2:4.
      GOD OF GODS (LORD OF LORDS).
      De 10:17; Da 2:47.
       
      GOD OF TRUTH. 
      Heb., ʼEl ʼemeth′, indicating that Jehovah is true and faithful in all his dealings.—Ps 31:5.
       
      GRAND GOD. 
      Aram., ʼElah′ rav.—Da 2:45.
       
      HAPPY GOD. 
      Gr., ma·ka′ri·os The·os′.—Compare 1Ti 1:11.
       
      HOLY GOD. 
      Heb., ʼElo·him′ qedho·shim′.—Jos 24:19.
       
      HOLY, HOLY, HOLY. 
      Heb., qa·dhohsh′, qa·dhohsh′, qa·dhohsh′. This expression as applied to Jehovah includes holiness, cleanness, purity and sacredness to the superlative degree.—Isa 6:3; Re 4:8.
      INDEFINITELY LASTING GOD. 
      Heb., ʼEl ʽoh·lam′.—Ge 21:33.
       
      INSTRUCTOR. 
      Heb., Moh·reh′. (Job 36:22) GRAND INSTRUCTOR.—Isa 30:20.
       
      I SHALL PROVE TO BE WHAT I SHALL PROVE TO BE.
      See Ex 3:14 ftn.
       
      JEALOUS. 
      Heb., Qan·naʼ′, meaning “Insisting on Exclusive Devotion.”—Ex 34:14; see also Eze 5:13.
       
      JEHOVAH GOD.
      Ge 2:4. See App 1A.
       
      JEHOVAH OF ARMIES (JEHOVAH OF HOSTS) (LORD OF HOSTS). 
      (This expression with minor variations occurs 283 times in M. It also occurs twice in the Christian Greek Scriptures where Paul and James quoted or alluded to prophecies in the Hebrew Scriptures. (See Ro 9:29; Jas 5:4.) The expression “Jehovah of armies” indicates the power held by the Ruler of the universe, who has at his command vast forces of spirit creatures.—Ps 103:20, 21; 148:2; Isa 1:24; Jer 32:17, 18. See App 1E.
      KING OF ETERNITY. 
      Gr., Ba·si·leus′ ton ai·o′non.—Compare 1Ti 1:17.
       
      KING OF THE NATIONS. 
      Heb., Me′lekh hag·goh·yim′.—Jer 10:7.
       
      LIVING GOD. 
      Heb., ʼElo·him′, with the plural adjective chai·yim′ (De 5:26); or with the singular adjective chai (Isa 37:4, 17); Gr., The·os′ zon.—Compare Heb 3:12.
      MAJESTY. 
      Gr., Me·ga·lo·sy′ne, denoting his lofty, superior position. (Compare Heb 1:3; 8:1.) MAJESTIC ONE. Heb., ʼAd·dir′.—Isa 33:21.
      MAKER. 
      Heb., ʽO·seh′. (Ps 115:15; Jer 10:12) GRAND MAKER.—Isa 54:5.
       
      MOST HIGH. 
      Heb., ʽEl·yohn′.—De 32:8; Ps 9:2; 83:18.
       
      MOST HOLY ONE. 
      Heb., Qedho·shim′, plural to denote excellence and majesty.—Pr 30:3.
       
      OVERSEER OF YOUR SOULS.
      1Pe 2:25.
       
      THE ROCK. 
      Heb., hats·Tsur′. (De 32:4) Figuratively used to describe Jehovah’s qualities as perfect, just, faithful, righteous and upright; as father (De 32:18); as a stronghold (2Sa 22:32; Isa 17:10); as a secure height and refuge (Ps 62:7; 94:22); as a source of salvation.—De 32:15; Ps 95:1.
      SAVIOR. 
      Heb., Moh·shi′aʽ (Isa 43:11; 45:21); Gr., So·ter′.—Compare Lu 1:47.
       
      SHEPHERD.
      Ps 23:1; 1Pe 2:25.
       
      SOVEREIGN LORD.
      Ge 15:2; Lu 2:29. See App 1E.
       
      SUPREME ONE. 
      Aram., ʽEl·yoh·nin′.—Da 7:18, 22, 27.
       
      THE [TRUE] GOD. 
      Heb., ha·ʼElo·him′.—See App 1F.
       
      THE [TRUE] GOD. 
      Heb., ha·ʼEl′.—See App 1G.
       
      THE [TRUE] LORD. 
      Heb., ha·ʼA·dhohn′. -
    • By Jesus.defender
      BIBLE PROOFS OF THE TRINITY

      Key: The Father, Son and Holy Spirit are so clearly and consistently linked in Scripture that, assuming that God is not three persons, makes it impossible to understand some passages.
      Though JWs exalt human reasoning against the Trinity doctrine, saying it is unreasonable,those who submit to God’s Word must conclude that it is unreasonable to doubt the Trinity.
      Consider these scriptures proving the Trinity:
      1. Matthew 28:19 The ‘Name’ of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.

      Watchtower teaching: JWs ask, ‘Does this verse prove the Father, Son and Holy Spirit are equal in substance, power and eternity?’ They say, ‘No, no more than listing three people
      Tom, Dick and Harry mean that they are three in one.’ They say that the Trinity doctrine is imposed on the text, not derived from it.

      Bible Teaching: The key point is that the word ‘name’ is singular in the Greek NT, thus proving that there is one God, but three distinct persons within the Godhead.
      This proves the Trinity because Jesus did not say:
      i) ‘into the names (plural) of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.’
      ii) ‘into the name of the Father, and into the name of the Son, and into the name of the Holy Spirit’, as if we had three separate beings.
      iii) ‘into the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit’ omitting the three articles (the), as if the Father, Son and Holy Spirit might be three designations of a single person.
      What He does say is: ‘into the name (singular) of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit’.
      Jesus first teaches the unity of the three by combining them all within a single name.
      He then teaches that each is a different person by introducing each of them in turn with the
      article (tou):
      Question: Can you see that rules of grammar dictate plurality (the, the, the) within unity (the name), because the word ‘name’ is singular and definite articles (Greek: tou) are placed in front of Father, Son and Holy Spirit?
      Other verses showing ‘three-in-oneness’ of the Godhead are:
      i) At the creation of man, ‘God said, let us make man in our image, after our likeness . .’ (Genesis 1:26). ‘Our image’ in v. 26 is explained as God’s image in v. 27.
      The one true God consists of three persons who are able to confer with one another and carry out their plans together, while still being one God.
      ii) After the Fall, ‘the Lord (Jehovah) God (Elohim) said, Behold, the man is become as one of us . ’ (Genesis 3:22)
      ‘Us’ refers back to LORD (Jehovah), showing plurality within the Jehovah Godhead.

      iii) At the Tower of Babel, ‘the LORD (Jehovah), said . . let us go down’ (Genesis 11:6,7).
      iv) Isaiah ‘saw the Lord (Adonai) sitting upon a throne (v.1) mine eyes have seen the King, the LORD (Jehovah) of hosts (v.5). I heard the voice of the Lord (Adonai) saying: ‘Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?’’ (Isaiah 6:1,5,8) Here Isaiah sees ‘Adonai’ on the throne, then Isaiah calls Him ‘Jehovah of hosts’ (v.5).

      Then Adonai asks,‘Who will go for us?’The ‘us’ shows plurality in the Jehovah Godhead. This equivalence of Adonai and Jehovah (both called ‘us’) proves the Trinity Godhead.
      2. Genesis 18 and 19. Three men each called Jehovah.
      JWs believe that it is impossible for Jehovah God to exist as three persons: Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Yet Genesis 18 and 19 shows Jehovah appearing to Abraham as three men. This
      shows that even the impossible from a human viewpoint is possible with God. Notice that:

      i) Abraham addresses the three as ‘Jehovah’ (v.3 NWT);
      ii) When two of the three men depart to visit Lot in Sodom, Abraham continues to address the remaining one as ‘Jehovah’ (Genesis 18:22,26,27,30,31,32,33).
      iii) Lot addressed the other two as ‘Jehovah’ (Genesis 19:1,18 NWT). ‘Then Lot said to them: “Not that please, Jehovah”.’ (19:18 NWT)
      iv) ‘Then Jehovah made it rain sulphur and fire from Jehovah, from the heavens upon Sodom and Gomorra.’ (Genesis 19:24)
      Notice the mention here of two Jehovahs, one in heaven who sends judgment on Sodom and Gomorra, at the bidding of the other Jehovah on earth.
      This gives strong evidence for more than one person in the Godhead. The Jehovah upon earth was one of three persons to visit Abraham, one of whom stays behind to speak further to Abraham and is called Jehovah. (Genesis 21:1 ‘Jehovah turned his attention to Sarah’).
      Hence this shows that it is possible for Jehovah to manifest Himself as three-in-one.
       
      3. II Corinthians 3:17 - ‘Jehovah is the Spirit’ (NWT).
       
      JWs challenge Christians to prove the Trinity in the Bible. This can be done if we find verses teaching that the Holy Spirit is Jehovah God, and the Son is Jehovah God.
      II Corinthians 3:17 teaches this by saying: ‘Now Jehovah is the Spirit.’

      How much clearer can it be than this, which states that the Holy Spirit is (=) Jehovah God? This proves the Deity of the Holy Spirit, and the existence of 2 persons in the Godhead.
      4. I John 5:7,8 The Johannine Comma, the famous Trinitarian proof text (3 Heavenly witnesses)
      Watchtower teaching: JWs claim that this passage ought not to be in the Bible, because it is not in most Greek manuscripts. It is omitted by most modern Bible versions. ’
      Bible Teaching: Erasmus omitted it from his first edition of the printed Greek NT (1516), because it occurred in the Latin Vulgate and not in any Greek manuscript. To quieten the
      outcry that followed, he agreed to restore it if it could be found in one Greek manuscript.
      Two Greek manuscripts, Codex 61 and 629 were found, so Erasmus included it in his 1522 edition. Since these manuscripts are late (14th and 15th Century), some think the readings are
      corrupt. What do we answer? (See page 805-806).

      5. In II Corinthians 13:14, (the Apostolic Benediction) why is there a change in the order of the persons of the Trinity, compared to Matthew 28:19, if not to show that ‘in this Trinity
      none is before or after the other, and none is greater or less than another’?

      ‘The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Ghost, be with you all. Amen.’ (II Corinthians 13:14)
      ‘Baptising them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.’ Matt. 28:19
    • By Jesus.defender
      Isaiah 9:6 - Is Jesus ‘a Mighty God’ or ‘Jehovah God’?

      ‘His name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, the Mighty God (410), the Everlasting
      Father, the Prince of Peace’.
      Watchtower teaching: JWs concede that Jesus is a ‘mighty God’, but they are adamant that
      He is not Almighty God as Jehovah is. They think that Christ is one of lesser gods.
      Bible teaching: The Bible shows that both Jesus and Jehovah are called ‘Mighty God’.
      Jehovah is called ‘Mighty God’ in:
      a) ‘The remnant of Israel . . . shall stay upon Jehovah, the remnant of Jacob shall return . .
      unto the mighty God (410)’. (Isaiah 10:20,21).
      b) ‘the Great, the Mighty God (410), Jehovah of hosts, is his name’. (Jeremiah 32:18).
      Because Jehovah and Jesus are both called ‘Mighty God’, this proves Christ’s equality with
      God the Father.
      Ask: Since Jehovah is called ‘Mighty God’ (Isaiah 10:21) just as Jesus is called ‘Mighty
      God’ (Isaiah 9:6), doesn’t this mean that the Watchtower is wrong in saying that ‘Mighty
      God’ means a lesser deity?
      Ask: If both Jesus and Jehovah are ‘Mighty God’, then what does this tell you about Jesus’
      divine nature?
      Ask: If both Jesus and Jehovah are equally ‘Mighty God’, then isn’t this two members of
      the Trinity?
      Note: There is only one Mighty God in heaven:
      a) ‘I am the first and I am the last; beside me there is no God (430)’. (Isaiah 44:6b)
      b) ‘Is there a God (433) besides Me? Yea, there is no God; I know not any’.(Isaiah 44:8b).
      c) ‘I am the Lord (YHWH), and there is none else,there is no God beside me’(Isaiah 45:5a)
      The NWT translates John 1:1 as ‘the word was a god’.
      Isaiah 44:8b shows this to be false by denying the existence of ‘a god’ other than Jehovah.
      The phrase ‘Mighty God’ is ‘Elohim’ in Hebrew, meaning ‘Fullness of power’, portraying
      Christ as the ‘powerful Governor of the universe’.
      Notice that ‘Elohim (430)’ is also used to describe Jehovah God as:
      i) ‘The God (430) of the whole earth’. (Isaiah 54:5)
      ii) ‘The God (430) of all flesh’. (Jeremiah 32:27)
      iii) ‘I prayed to the God (430) of heaven’. (Nehemiah 2:4)
      iv) ‘For the Lord (YHWH) your God (430) is God (430) of gods....a great God.’(Deut 10:17)
      In Isaiah 40:3 Jesus is called both Jehovah (3068) and Elohim (430) in the same verse:
      ‘Prepare ye the way of the Jehovah, make straight in the desert a highway for our God (430)’.
      Mark 1:3 and John 1:23 apply Jehovah here to Jesus.
      Question: What is meant by calling Jesus ‘Everlasting Father’?
      Since Jesus is not the Father, why does Isaiah call Jesus ‘Everlasting Father’?
      Answer: Jesus considers the Father as someone other than Himself over 200 times in the NT.
      ‘Everlasting Father’ in Isaiah 9:6 means ‘Father of eternity’.
    • By Jesus.defender
      JEHOVAH’S NAME or JESUS CHRIST’S NAME.

      The Watchtower teaches that God’s true Name is Jehovah. They teach that:
      ‘Sometime during the second or third Century CE, the scribes removed the tetragrammaton (JHWH) from both the Septuagint and the Christian Greek Scriptures and replaced it with κυριος (Lord) or θεος (God)’. Reference Edition of NWT, 1984, p 1564.
      The Watchtower’s Kingdom Interlinear Translation (KIT) proves that Jesus is Jehovah God.
      On page 10,11 of the 1985 KIT, under the heading ‘Restoring the Divine Name, Jehovah’ we read: ‘the evidence (what evidence?) is that the original text of the Christian Greek Scriptures has been tampered with (no proof) . . . Sometime during the second or third centuries CE, the Tetragrammaton (YHWH) was eliminated from the Greek texts by copyists (no proof).
      Instead of YHWH they substituted the words Kurios (‘Lord’) and Theos (‘God’).’
      Note: This is a lie. There is no historical or manuscript evidence or evidence of protest to support this claim. Somebody would have protested such a change.No one did. It never happened.
      The New World Translation (NWT) is the JW perversion of the Bible made to support their false doctrines. It inserts the name ‘Jehovah’ in the New Testament in the place of God (θεος=theos) or Lord (κυριος =kurios) on 237 occasions, where they believe it refers to God the
      Father. They often refer to Hebrew translations of the NT to see where this has been done.
      These are footnoted as J1 to J27. Their dishonesty and deceit is shown by their failure to translate these words as ‘Jehovah’ when it refers to Christ. (eg: Philippians 2:11; Hebrews 1:10).
      JWs say that the proper use of God’s ‘correct’ name (Jehovah) is absolutely essential to one’s salvation. They quote from their NWT: 
      ‘Everyone who calls on the name of Jehovah will be saved.’ Romans 10:13 (NWT).
      ‘People will have to know that I am Jehovah.’ Ezekiel 39:6 (NWT).
      JWs believe that because they are the only group who refer to God by His ‘true’ name, Jehovah, they are the only true followers of God.
      Their claim is false for these reasons:
      1) Jehovah is not a Biblical term. It is a man-made term. The Old Testament has YHWH because the original Hebrew only had consonants. Jews feared taking God’s name in vain, so when they publicly read YHWH, they would pronounce it ‘Adonai’ (Lord).
      Later they inserted the vowels from Adonai (a-o-a) into the consonants YHWH to give YAHOWAH, which became Jehovah. Hence, the word Jehovah comes from a consonantvowel
      combination from YHWH and Adonai.
      2) No-one knows for sure the original correct pronunciation of YHWH. Hence we cannot insist on ‘Jehovah’ as being correct.
      3) Jesus never addressed the Father as Jehovah in the New Testament. If JWs are correct that God must be always called Jehovah, then Jesus was sinning by not calling God ‘Jehovah’. When the NWT puts Jehovah in Jesus’ mouth in the NT, it contradicts all the NT manuscripts which don’t have it.
      QUESTION: Since Jesus never in the NT addressed the Father as Jehovah, why should we?
      4) Jesus and the Apostle Paul tell us to address God as ‘Father’:
      a) Jesus taught us to pray to God as ‘Our Father’, not ‘Our Jehovah’: ‘After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father.....’ (Matthew 6:9).
      b) Jesus addressed God as Father in His own prayers:
      ‘I thank thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth’. (Matthew 11:25).
      ‘O my Father, if it be possible.......’ (Matthew 26:39,42).
      ‘He said, Abba, Father.......’ (Mark 14:36).
      ‘ I thank thee, O Father, Lord of heaven.......’ (Luke 10:21).
      ‘Saying, Father, if thou be willing.......’ (Luke 22:42).
      ‘Then said Jesus, Father, forgive them;.......’ (Luke 23:34).
      ‘Father, the hour is come......’ (John 17:1).
      c) Paul said, ‘we cry, Abba, Father.’ (Romans 8:15).
      d) The Holy Spirit through Paul said, ‘God hath sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father’. (Galatians 4:6).
      Here the Holy Spirit of God tells us to call God ‘Abba, Father’, not ‘Jehovah’
      QUESTION: If Jesus, the Holy Spirit and Paul all address God as Father nine times (and never as Jehovah) then shouldn’t we call God ‘Father’?
      5) No Ancient NT manuscripts contain the tetragram (YHWH) to translate as Jehovah.
      The Church writers before 325 AD only mention Jehovah once in passing. JWs tell us that most Bible versions deceive people because they omit Jehovah as God’s Name, so
      the JWs dishonestly add the word ‘Jehovah’ to the NT text, even though it is not in any NT Greek manuscript, ancient version, papyri or lectionary.
      The WT’s claim that ‘Jehovah’ as God’s name was removed from the NT by superstitious scribes, is a total lie with no supporting historical or manuscript evidence.
      6) Whose Name did the early Christians identify themselves with? Was it Jehovah or was it Jesus Christ? Always Jesus Christ, never Jehovah.
      Who knows more, the Apostles or modern JWs? Consider these examples:
      a) The Apostles never used the name ‘Jehovah’.
      b) The Apostles and first century Christians were never called ‘Jehovah’s Witnesses’. ‘The disciples were called Christians first in Antioch.’ (Acts 11:26).
      c) There is no proof that Jesus or his disciples ever pronounced the tetragram YHWH. 
      JWs claim that when Jesus read from Isaiah 61:1 ‘The Spirit of the Lord is upon me....’ as quoted in Luke 4:18,19, that Jesus pronounced the word ‘YHWH’.
      This is most unlikely. JWs assume that the religious leaders endorsing Christ’s ‘gracious words’ in verse 22 was because He uttered the name YHWH?
      Historical records in the Mishnah, from Josephus, and from other sources show the Jews were loathe to allow the name YHWH to be used. The Jews would not have tolerated it being used by anybody but the High Priest.Jesus would have read ‘Adonai’
      7) 119 Bible passages referring to Jehovah, are quoted and applied to Christ in the New Testament (Proof Available)
      QUESTION: In view of 119 Bible verses applying ‘Jehovah’ to Christ in the NT, what does this tell you about who Christ is?
      ? The New Testament tells us to name the name of Jesus Christ, not the name of Jehovah. Consider these examples:
      1. ‘Let every one that nameth the name of Christ depart from iniquity.’(II Timothy 2:19)
      2. ‘I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ . . .’ (I Cor 1:10)
      3. ‘Ye are washed,....sanctified,... justified in the name of the Lord Jesus ’ (I Cor 6:11)
      4. ‘Whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus.’ (Col 3:17)
      5. ‘That the name of our Lord Jesus Christ may be glorified in you....’ (II Thess 1:12)
      6. ‘Now we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye withdraw yourselves.....’ (II Thess. 3:6)
      7. ‘all that in every place call upon the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, both theirs and ours.’ (I Corinthians 1:2)
      8. ‘Thou holdest fast my name....’ Jesus said to the Pergamos church. (Revelation 2:13).
      JWs have not held fast Christ’s name, nor have they called upon Christ’s name, nor do they name the name of Christ, nor is Jesus Christ precious to them, because they do not have saving belief in Him. ‘Unto you . . . which believe He is precious’.(I Peter 2:7).
      QUESTION: Where does the NT tell us to name the name of Jehovah?
      9) The New Testament always lifts up Jesus Christ’s name, not Jehovah’s name. Why?
      Because Jesus Christ is Jehovah God on earth. Christ is 100% God and 100% man.
      Q1: In whose name should we meet together?
      ‘Where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.’ (Matthew 18:20)
      Q2: Demons were cast out by the authority of whose name?
      ‘Paul.....said to the spirit, I command thee in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her.’ (Acts 16:18)
      Q3: In whose name should we preach repentance and forgiveness of sins? ‘And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations. And ye are witnesses of these things.’ (Luke 24:47,48)
      Q4: In whose name are we to believe and receive forgiveness of sins? ‘....through his name whosoever believeth in him shall receive remission of sins.’ (Acts 10:43, John 1:12)
      Q5: By whose name, and no other, do we obtain salvation? Acts 4:10,12 says: ‘by the name of Jesus Christ ... Neither is there salvation in any other, for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.’
      Q6: In whose name should we pray? John 16:23,24; 14:13,14; 15:16 says: ‘Whatsoever ye shall ask the Father in my name, he will give it you.’
      Q7: In whose name is the Holy Spirit sent?
      ‘But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name......’ (John 14:26)
      Q8: In whose name and authority did the disciples heal the sick?
      ‘His name through faith in his name hath made this man strong’ (Acts 3:16; 4:30)
      Q9: Whose name did Paul say that we are to call upon?
      ‘ all that in every place call upon the name of Jesus Christ our Lord.’ (I Cor 1:2)
      Q10: Whose name is above every name?
      ‘God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name .... that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord.’(Phil 2:9-11)
      Paul’s quote about Christ is from Isaiah 45:22-24 where every knee will bow to Jehovah. What is true about Jehovah, is also true of Christ, the Lord of all mankind
      Q11: According to Acts 1:8, of whom are we to be witnesses?
      ‘Ye shall be witnesses unto me (Jesus)’
      Q12: In whose name were believers baptized?
      ‘they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus’. (Acts 8:16; 2:38)
      Q13: In whose name were believers designated?
      ‘the disciples were called Christians first in Antioch’. (Acts 11:26)
      Q14: In whose name did the apostles speak?
      ‘Commanded them not to speak at all nor teach in the name of Jesus’ Acts 4:17,18
      Q15: In whose name did early Christians suffer? Acts 15:26 says:
      ‘Men that have hazarded their lives for the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.’ ‘rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer shame for his name’Acts 5:41;9:16
      Q16: Whose name was Paul to carry?
      ‘Lord said: He is a chosen vessel unto me, to bear my name before the Gentiles, kings, and the children of Israel.’ (Acts 9:15)
      Q17: In whose name did Paul deliver a man to Satan?
      ‘In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ...to deliver such an one to Satan.’ I Cor 5:4,5
      Q18: In whose name did the apostles teach? Acts 5:28; 8:12 says:
      ‘Did we not straitly command you that ye should not teach in this name?’
      10) Why does WT break their own rule (where the OT speaks of Jehovah), that they do not insert Jehovah in the NT, when the quote clearly refers to Christ?
      Peter quotes from Joel 2:32 (spoken of Jehovah) and applies it to Jesus in Acts 2:21 and 38.
      Calling on the name of Jehovah for salvation equals repenting and being baptised in the name of Jesus Christ because of the forgiveness of sins.
      Conclusion: Jesus shares the nature of His Father and His Name. The absence of YHWH in any NT manuscript demolishes the WT case of introducing the word ‘Jehovah’ into the NT.
      Question: If God was so concerned about preserving His covenant name, why did the apostles not preserve it in their writings?
      Question: To imply that the name ‘Jehovah’ is the main name of God that we are to use, contradicts the continued NT use of the name ‘Jesus’ on 900 occasions, while the tetragram YHWH is used nowhere in the NT.
      QUESTION: Why does the WT not translate ‘Jehovah’ into Hebrews 1:10, I Peter 3:15 andPhilippians 2:11, when the OT passages from which these are quoted refer to YHWH?

      We are to make the name of the Father known as Jesus emphasized (Matthew 6:9; John 17:26). How do we do it? By recognizing that Jesus Christ was chosen by the Father to embody all the glory and important reputation of that Name.
       
    • By James Thomas Rook Jr.
      A 32 year old Bethelite at Warwick, NY  was walking along a sidewalk at Bethel, going to the cafeteria for the evening meal,  and as he walked along, was in deep prayer to Jehovah God.
       He said, "Jehovah, you have promised to give me the desires of my heart. That's what I am asking you for right now. Please give me a confirmation that you will reward my faith and service to you.”
       Suddenly the sky clouded up over his head and God in a booming voice spoke to him. "I have searched your heart and determined it to be pure. The last time I granted someone the desires of his heart request .... it was to my servant Solomon.”
       “ He didn't disappoint me with his request for wisdom.”
       “ I think I can trust that you won't disappoint me either. Because you have been faithful to me in all ways, I will grant you the desires of your heart."
       The Brother sat and thought about it for a while and said, "I've always wanted to have a deep understanding of the Bible, and I have really tried, but I have forsaken a good education, and taken a vow of poverty and cannot afford a car or the classes I need to become an Engineer when my service here at  Bethel is up …. could you help me afford a car, and a stipend so I can go to school, and learn to provide for myself and my future family as I get old?"
       The Lord laughed and said, "That's impossible! Think of the logistics of that! I would have to start creating again to make you a car, and money to use, and get you into a college without any background that would make sense for what you would be learning!”
       “ … Your request is very materialistic, a little disappointing. I could do it, but it's hard for me to justify your craving for worldly things. Take a little more time and think of another request ….  a  request you think would honor and glorify Me as well."
       The Brother  thought about it for a long while and tried to think of a really good request.
       Finally, he said, “Oh God, please hear my request.  I was Baptized when I was eight years old, and paid attention all my life, taking notes, reading the Bible, and meditation … but I just cannot understand the “Overlapping Generations” thing.  I can’t see how Jesus or the Apostles or any disciples in the Early Church ever understood that, when Jesus was speaking. Can you help me to understand the “Overlapping Generations” Doctrine?”
       “I want to know what all the other Brothers and Sisters know, what  they feel inside and what they're thinking ...I want to know how to be as truly happy as they are, knowing these deep things about You ....That's the wish that I want, Jehovah … my hearts desire."
        … after a few minutes, God said, "How about a Corvette and a full scholarship to Stanford University?"
       
    • By Queen Esther
      BREAKING NEWS.....
      THE WHOLE WORLD WILL KNOW JEHOVAH,  AND THIS IS JUST THE BEGINNING !

      1000  Manuscripts  found!...
    • By Queen Esther
      YAHWEH  - The  only  TRUE  GOD !  PROOF - God's Name,  YAH  Is  Written  On  Your  Face  &  Throughout  Creation !    ( Rev. 14:1  -  Rev. 22:4 )
       YAHWEH IS THE ONLY TRUE GOD:  Matthew 28:19 (KJV) Go ye therefore, and TEACH  *ALL NATIONS*,  baptizing them in THE NAME OF THE FATHER,  and of  THE SON,  and of the  Holy Spirit !
      Isaiah 45 5,  I am YAHWEH, and  THERE IS NONE ELSE,  there is NO GOD BESIDES ME:  I girded thee,  though thou hast not  known me:  6 That they may know from the rising of the sun,  and from the west,  that  THERE IS NONE BESIDE ME.  I am YAHWEH,  YHWH, JEHOVAH,  and there is  NONE  ELSE...
                           ? ? ? .•*¨`*•..¸???¸.•*¨`*•. ? ? ?
    • By Micah Ong
      YAHWEH is NOT a HEBREW NAME. It is ARAMAIC, which is closely related to HEBREW.
      Aramaic replaced ancient Paleo Hebrew and nearly all the existing manuscripts, including the Masoretic text and the Dead Sea Scrolls, are in the Babylonian Aramaic alphabet.
      These four letters YHWH are Babylonian Aramaic. They are NOT SACRED and they are NOT HOLY. They come from the very root of Babel, confusion, and babble and are profane! According to the Jews who teach about these four letter, the god of this name is a bisexual. He is said to be androgynous (being both male and female). He is said to be androgynous (being both male and female). This god is a devil god. He is NOT the TRUE God of the ISRAELITES.
      Two Catholic monks invented the guess names of JEHOVAH (1270AD) and YAHWEH (about 1725AD). They should not be in any Bible since they did not exist at the time the Bible was written.
      The antichrist Concision (Law keepers, Noahides) who worships the Tetragrammatons’ YHWH, hail the Aramaic alphabet letters of Mystery Babylon to be sacred and holy and the guess names Jehovah and Yahweh derived from them to be the sacred name(s) of God.