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What good is an internet forum for JWs?

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Most Witnesses are quite satisfied with a midweek meeting, a weekend meeting, and meetings for service, a study night with the spouse or family, and some additional time for talk preparation, additional personal study, prayer, meditation and contemplation. For many, due to various circumstances, it's hard enough to keep up even a minimum in each area mentioned.

But for others, it's obvious that they (we) spend quite a bit of time on this forum, too. And for some, I'm guessing, they spend some time here, and even seek out other places, too, where Witnesses talk or are talked about. It's pretty obvious that when it comes to how we spend our free time, there are much more fruitful pursuits. We could be visiting sick or shut-in brothers and sisters, or just doing something loving for someone else, perhaps even taking on some additional employment to able to help out those who are having financial difficulties. And not to judge anyone of course, because it's likely that many of us already engage in such additional activities, and yet we still find ourselves coming to a forum such as this.

I don't think anyone of us would think we are "witnessing" here, at least not in the typical sense of how we define sacred service. I do think that some think they are "witnessing" when they defend the status quo against those who might raise questions. And some non-JWs and ex-JWs likely think they are "witnessing" by exposing the real truth about the truth, as some would call it. However, when JWs, defenders of JWs, or even non-JWs find they are not resolving questions in their defense of a certain position, there is often a lot of anger that gets shown, and the focus of anger gets all the attention instead of the unresolved question. (Of course, that's probably a tactic for some who would rather not admit that some questions are still unresolved.)

I won't try to address the reasons that other people might be here, but I can repeat my own reasons.

I have unresolved questions of the type that would not be addressed by others in the congregation, nor by the ones responsible for  "creating" those unresolved questions in the first place. JW.ORG is not going to include a "questions and comments" section any time soon, and if they did it would become a complete mess in a hurry. So I use this site as a kind of substitute for a JW.ORG questions and comments section.

Because of that kind of utilization of this forum, I don't include a lot of comments about the areas of agreement because I have no question about them, no issue, and these are the areas where we can comment and speak up freely at the Hall, or to anyone around us who's interested in talking about such things. If this is our situation, however, that kind of skews the impression we might give to others about the Witnesses, why we believe, why we share our beliefs, and how much we appreciate our association with a world-wide brotherhood of fellow believers.

Speaking for myself, I know we've done a bit of this on the JW Closed forum, but perhaps it's a good idea now and then to share our positive public views on this part of the forum, too. When I get a chance, I'll add something more specific to my next post.

 

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I guess the first point I could address is how someone with serious unresolved questions and concerns about a couple of our teachings could still participate in promoting our publications and our meetings to interested persons. Won't those persons be faced with unresolved questions too?

This gets to the claim by some that 85 percent of what we present is not worth it, and 15 percent is worth it, but that 15 percent is valuable enough to ignore the 85 percent.

If those were the real numbers then making a convert would be very hard to justify. And in any case we would always have to spend a lot of time telling our Bible students that there are a lot of things we don't understand ourselves. 

But the numbers aren't that bad, because we really don't spend the amount of time on the areas where more people have unresolved questions. For example, let's just look at the two magazines that were common to many of the carts today. One is the Watchtower No.3 2019, and the other is the Awake! No.2 2019.

The Awake! has the cover is "Six Lessons Children Need to Learn." There are short articles on Self-Control, Humility, Resilience, Responsibility, Adult Guidance, and the Need for Moral Values. I am critical of a lot of things, but I found every single word to be well written and useful. It makes a nicely presented way to discuss such important topics with children. Or it just makes it simple to keep a prioritized list of ideas in a parent's mind to remember as they come up. And all of it leads to the fact that Bible principles are the foundation of these lessons, even if might seem at first like mundane lessons about the amount of time spent on entertainment media.

So on to the Watchtower. The basic questions that religion should answer are the same questions that people ask all over the world. They are the questions that don't really overlap with science, and although they might overlap a bit with "philosophy" it's really the place of true religion to show why the Bible's view gives the best and most satisfying answers. 

These are the questions of "What is the meaning of life?" "Is God to blame for suffering?" "What happens when we die?"

Those are the same questions called "Life's Big Questions" on the back of the Awake!

So the Watchtower starts out with an article on "The Sad Reality of Death." Nothing questionable or inappropriate here. Science is mentioned as a possible source of answers, here, and in the next article "The Search For Long Life." The idea is clear and obvious, that "We are Designed to Live" just as the next article shows. Again, I see nothing that any naysayer, except atheists, might find wrong or questionable. In fact, up to this point, atheists might still be following along, too.  After all, it does not overwhelm with scriptures, but uses them in unobtrusive ways.

Now the question of "Why Do We Grow Old And Die" gets into the Biblical aspects, on page 8 of 15. It's all clearly the correct Biblical answer, however. Granted, some religious and science-oriented religious persons can take Adam & Eve as allegorical in some way, which is common. But even so, the rest of the Bible clearly uses the exact example as the explanation about death on earth.

And therefore page 10 begins discussing the hope, when death is conquered. There is a very clear explanation of the Ransom here. Using Scriptures throughout this article. There is a paragraph or two on "When" but it is not done with the idea that "we know something about the date that no one else knows." Someone might wonder why it only mentions "millions" being resurrected, but this isn't said in such a way that we are telling people that it won't be billions, or thousands; it's just presented as a way of stating a happy hope in the resurrection. It mentions the "last days" but exactly the way the scriptures use the expression.

In detailing "How Can You Have More Than This Life?" on page 12, the appeal is to those who want to see a better earth, and who would like to live forever under much better conditions. It's an invitation to learn more. And the next article shows how the road to that better life will produce side effects of contentment, more satisfying priorities, better marriages, and even better health (overall) in this life.

I find BOTH of these entire magazines to be 100 percent valuable, well written, and they touch on no unresolved or unresolvable questions. And we all know that some of our talks and other publications cover this same material exactly as these articles do, sometimes with more examples, more verses, more detail -- but the same ideas.

We are offering exactly what people should be looking for, satisfactory answers to important questions.

When an interested person gets to all the meetings, they will soon discover that time is spent on the meaning of Ezekiel, for example, the history of the organization, and a lot of emphasis on urgency in preaching on account of the times we're living in, and the overall timing of Jehovah's purpose. Some of this material will likely result in questions that they will find ways to resolve, or else just accept and wait for a resolution in time.

But it's not the gist of our preaching and disciple-making. I think most people who come into the organization will remember the Big Questions, and that those were the primary reasons they joined with us. Those questions are answered in a more appealing and satisfying way than other religions are answering them. And we back up our answers with the Bible. Our teachings regarding war, neutrality, Trinity, hellfire, paradise earth, the challenge to Jehovah's sovereignty, etc., will make even more sense to interested persons when they remember that the first attraction was to the way the Bible answered those big questions. Those were the questions that build a primary foundation around the teaching of God's Purpose, Eternal Life, the Ransom, the Resurrection, etc.

So even if chronology and some of the specific prophetic interpretations can result in unresolved questions, for now, it's not like this needs to be such a big part of Witness thinking. We can participate in every major aspect of our worship with joy and without being overly concerned with these unresolved questions. And when they finally are resolved, I'm sure we'll see them as relatively unimportant compared to the big things.

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Really well written @JW Insider.

Funny you should mention the magazines. Just the other day I was reading the #1/2020 WT "The search for Truth" which I think is also excellent. But it got me wondering about something. Under the subheading Why you can trust the Bible,- prophetic truth, it gives the example of a Bible prophesy and its fulfillment. So what I started wondering about is do we ever talk about the fulfillment of the prophesy about Jesus' kingship as happening in 1914 in the same way as we do about other prophesies that were fulfilled? For example, why wouldn't we use this prophesy to convince people that they can trust the Bible in place of the one that was used. In theory, we should be able to.

I am not saying 1914 has never been mentioned previously in magazines meant for the public, but has it ever been used as proof of the fulfillment of Bible prophesy with regard to Jesus and his enthronement. (I am not talking about things happening a proof of the "last days"). Am I making any sense? :S

14 hours ago, JW Insider said:

So even if chronology and some of the specific prophetic interpretations can result in unresolved questions, for now, it's not like this needs to be such a big part of Witness thinking. We can participate in every major aspect of our worship with joy and without being overly concerned with these unresolved questions. (underscore by Anna)

Excellent point. I once called those other things "fluff" on a JW only forum and got reprimanded

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Perhaps it's just me, but looking back at invisible things that happened years ago, in the heavens that nobody could see, and for which there is absolutely NO EARTHLY EVIDENCE that cannot be explained by ten thousand explanations more probable ( Occam's razor?), by an organization that without a single exception in over a hundred and more years has ALWAYS been wrong about explaining such things, and whose credibility among sane, common sense people is ZERO .... I just don't "get it".

Am I missing something?

 

dt911212dhc0.jpg

jw.org evidence for gods kingdom not based on faith but scientific evidence.mp4

In fact, I do not think I am going too far out on a philosophical limb here to say that this statement by GB Member Bro. Stephen Lett is complete, utter and total nonsense.

It's SO DELUSIONAL, it is both sad and embarrassing to even watch.

 

 

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On 9/21/2019 at 3:36 PM, Anna said:

Funny you should mention the magazines. Just the other day I was reading the #1/2020 WT "The search for Truth" which I think is also excellent.

I think that one is excellent too. It follows the same general format of showing how the Bible answers the Big Question of how problems on earth will be solved through God's Kingdom. The angle of Truth and Trust in the Bible is the theme. Again, there is nothing stated in this magazine that should produce any unresolved questions. I believe even JTR would have to rate it somewhere near 100 percent useful, rather than his oft-repeated 15/85 rating.

On 9/21/2019 at 3:36 PM, Anna said:

. . . it gives the example of a Bible prophesy and its fulfillment. So what I started wondering about is do we ever talk about the fulfillment of the prophesy about Jesus' kingship as happening in 1914 in the same way . . .

I'm going to try not to get drawn into a 1914 discussion, at least not on this particular thread/topic. But I do understand what you are saying. I'm not sure how far back you are going, because even up to as recently as 2014, there were plenty of references that could have meant what you refer to.

The Isaiah 44/45 (Babylon-Cyrus) prophecy comes across as the most amazing prophecy to outsiders. It's simple, and it's used, of course, in the self-run free study on the JW.ORG website. The only persons for whom it would not work so well are those who believe that "Isaiah II" were chapters tacked onto the original book of Isaiah after the Babylonian exile.

If you listen closely to the Faith In Action -

    Hello guest!
video, I think it's clear that Daniel's "prediction" of 1914 is a better example for "insiders." An outsider would have too many unresolved questions:

  • Most outsiders aren't into this idea that the Bible pinpoints dates for end-times prophecies.
  • They would wonder why wicked Nebuchadnezzar's rulership pictures Jesus' Messianic rulership.
  • They would wonder why we give it an additional application when the scripture itself explicitly says the application is to Nebuchadnezzar, and says nothing about an assumed second application.
  • And they would wonder how we got 1914 from 7 times anyway.
    • It doesn't even say 7 times are 7 years (that takes another scripture from a completely different context).
    • And if it did mean 7 times were 7 years here, it doesn't say that those years were actually 360-day years, which also comes from its use in a different context.
    • And if it did mean that 7 times were 360-day years, it doesn't say that those 7 times 360 have to each be multiplied again by 365.25. That's because the day-for-a-year idea also comes from a different context.
    • And if they looked into it more deeply, they might wonder why we were forced to use a mix of secular dates for some events and pseudo-secular dates for some other events. Some of the dates we accept are the same as the secular dates, and some are 20 years different from the secular dates, but this time in the same context.
    • They might wonder why a Bible prophecy would even rely on secular dates in the first place since the Bible itself never uses a secular date like 539 BCE, 607 BCE, 587 BCE, 33 CE, etc.
    • They might wonder why we inconsistently claim that these "seven times" must be multiplied by 360, then multiplied again by 365.25 days each, when we claim that all uses of the term "three and a half times" in the Bible (Daniel & Revelation) should NEVER be multiplied again by 365.25, but only multiplied by 360. And even then, we allow for round-off in the use of "three and a half times."
    • And if they looked into Babylonian and Jewish calendar systems a bit closer, they might notice that there was no such thing as a period of 7 years that did not contain at least two (sometimes three) intercalary months so that the number of days in ALL 7 year periods would always be closer to 2,568 days, not 2,520.

Some of these questions would likely remain unresolved to an outsider, no matter how well we tried to explain them. They work for most those of us on the inside, because we generally trust that all those questions were probably resolved by persons who have a lot more holy spirit available to them than we do. So we just accept that we don't have to ask such questions.

Besides, when I mentioned the "Out of Darkness" video, I am primarily referring to the very fact that this prophecy is used as one that is supposed to prove that Jehovah was using Russell (not Daniel).

At the 44:20 mark in that video, we hear Brother Gerrit Lösch say:

". . . it enhanced their trust that Jehovah was using Brother Russell and his friends to explain truth to others."

At the 44:30 mark in the video, we hear Brother Anthony Morris say:

". . . it's still significant that they could pinpoint that year. That's phenomenal!"

This is hardly about the original prophecy anymore. In effect, this 1914 prophecy is therefore our own "internal" evidence (bragging rights) that there was an element of true inspiration from Jehovah to those who were supposedly "wise" enough to pinpoint that year by jumping through mental hoops that Daniel would have never dreamed of.

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14 hours ago, JW Insider said:

I think it's clear that Daniel's "prediction" of 1914 is a better example for "insiders." An outsider would have too many unresolved questions:

  • Most outsiders aren't into this idea that the Bible pinpoints dates for end-times prophecies.
  • They would wonder why wicked Nebuchadnezzar's rulership pictures Jesus' Messianic rulership.
  • They would wonder why we give it an additional application when the scripture itself explicitly says the application is to Nebuchadnezzar, and says nothing about an assumed second application.
  • And they would wonder how we got 1914 from 7 times anyway.
    • It doesn't even say 7 times are 7 years (that takes another scripture from a completely different context).
    • And if it did mean 7 times were 7 years here, it doesn't say that those years were actually 360-day years, which also comes from its use in a different context.
    • And if it did mean that 7 times were 360-day years, it doesn't say that those 7 times 360 have to each be multiplied again by 365.25. That's because the day-for-a-year idea also comes from a different context.
    • And if they looked into it more deeply, they might wonder why we were forced to use a mix of secular dates for some events and pseudo-secular dates for some other events. Some of the dates we accept are the same as the secular dates, and some are 20 years different from the secular dates, but this time in the same context.
    • They might wonder why a Bible prophecy would even rely on secular dates in the first place since the Bible itself never uses a secular date like 539 BCE, 607 BCE, 587 BCE, 33 CE, etc.
    • They might wonder why we inconsistently claim that these "seven times" must be multiplied by 360, then multiplied again by 365.25 days each, when we claim that all uses of the term "three and a half times" in the Bible (Daniel & Revelation) should NEVER be multiplied again by 365.25, but only multiplied by 360. And even then, we allow for round-off in the use of "three and a half times."
    • And if they looked into Babylonian and Jewish calendar systems a bit closer, they might notice that there was no such thing as a period of 7 years that did not contain at least two (sometimes three) intercalary months so that the number of days in ALL 7 year periods would always be closer to 2,568 days, not 2,520.

Some of these questions would likely remain unresolved to an outsider, no matter how well we tried to explain them.

Yes, that is exactly what I was alluding to.

So I wonder, is this perhaps the reason why we do not generally use this prophesy to convince people of the Bible's accuracy? Because it is just too ambiguous, and you can't really prove the fulfillment of it because most of it was invisible.  By the same token, why are we, the insiders, expected to believe this as fact? The answer 👇

 

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14 hours ago, JW Insider said:

In effect, this 1914 prophecy is therefore our own "internal" evidence (bragging rights) that there was an element of true inspiration from Jehovah to those who were supposedly "wise" enough to pinpoint that year by jumping through mental hoops that Daniel would have never dreamed of.

 

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15 hours ago, JW Insider said:
  • They would wonder why wicked Nebuchadnezzar's rulership pictures Jesus' Messianic rulership.
  • They would wonder why we give it an additional application when the scripture itself explicitly says the application is to Nebuchadnezzar, and says nothing about an assumed second application.

An example of an anti type, and we know what we think of anti types lately:

" Over the years, Jehovah has helped “the faithful and discreet slave” to become more discreet, or cautious. In what way? Now the faithful slave is careful to say that a Bible account represents something greater only when there is a clear Scriptural reason to do so."  ws15 3/15 p. 6

Is there a good scriptural reason to use Nebuchadnezzar's  rulership as applying to Jesus?

I don't know, I haven't researched it enough. And this is the crux of the matter.  I am a perfect example of an average Witness, who really just takes this particular doctrine as matter of fact without thoroughly "making sure whether it is so". Why? Because it is darn time consuming and complicated. And I would say at least 95% of Witnesses feel the same way. Which means 95% of Witnesses believe this doctrine without having convinced themselves whether it is really true or not. Hmmmm.......

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2 hours ago, Anna said:
On 9/21/2019 at 3:51 PM, James Thomas Rook Jr. said:

NO EARTHLY EVIDENCE

I don't know, I might argue with you on that one..

What I actually said was ....

On 9/21/2019 at 3:51 PM, James Thomas Rook Jr. said:

Perhaps it's just me, but looking back at invisible things that happened years ago, in the heavens that nobody could see, and for which there is absolutely NO EARTHLY EVIDENCE that cannot be explained by ten thousand explanations more probable  ( Occam's razor?)

 

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18 hours ago, JW Insider said:

In effect, this 1914 prophecy is therefore our own "internal" evidence (bragging rights) that there was an element of true inspiration from Jehovah to those who were supposedly "wise" enough to pinpoint that year by jumping through mental hoops that Daniel would have never dreamed of.

 
I agree.
 
As you said, Chronology could be one of those things where we can still do our best with all the good things we have, without having to be convinced about  something like this.

In any case, many actively don't want to research or be presented with arguments against it (1914). As if the 1914 doctrine is somehow infallible. And those who have tried, found themselves on the carpet or the proverbial room 101 and subsequently disfellowshipped.
In my opinion, not feeling free to make sure if all things  is dangerous because it can be likened to the laity in Christendom, who just believe because they were born into the religion. They just take their spiritual leaders word for it, and prefer it to stay that way (trinity, hellfire, immortal soul). How many of those rank and file in Christendom can really defend their teachings?  I think most of us Witnesses however could defend our belief on these subjects and include unambiguous scriptural backing, without mental gymnastics. With 1914 though, that is an entirely different story. This is why when I share the "good news" with people, I like to use the Good news brochure's simple and brief scriptural explanation and leave it at that*. Generally people accept it and don't ask for further detail because those scriptures are what completely suffices. I think we get ourselves into a pickle when we try and explain WHEN will these things happen and put a kind of time frame on it. But on the other hand, can we be blamed for that? Didn't the disciples ask "when?" In answer, and among other things Jesus told them : “Therefore, when you catch sight of the disgusting thing that causes desolation, as spoken about by Daniel the prophet, standing in a holy place
    Hello guest!
(let the reader use discernment), then let those in Ju·deʹa begin fleeing to the mountains".
(Matthew 24.)  In its initial fulfillment, we believe the disgusting thing was the pagan Roman army plundering the 'holy place' the temple in Jerusalem.

Regarding its modern day fulfillment, the wt99 5/1 p. 16-17 says this:

A Modern-Day “Disgusting Thing”

7. What prophecy of Jesus is being fulfilled in our time?

7 Since World War I, we have seen the larger fulfillment of Jesus’ sign recorded in

    Hello guest!
. Yet, recall his words: “When you catch sight of the disgusting thing that causes desolation . . . standing in a holy place, . . . then let those in Judea begin fleeing to the mountains.” (
    Hello guest!
) This aspect of the prophecy must have a fulfillment in our time too.

8. For years, how have Jehovah’s Witnesses identified “the disgusting thing” in modern times?

8 Demonstrating the confidence of Jehovah’s servants that this prophecy would be fulfilled, The Watchtower of January 1, 1921, focused on it in connection with developments in the Middle East. Subsequently, in its December 15, 1929, issue, on page 374, The Watchtower definitively said: “The whole tendency of the League of Nations is to turn the people away from God and from Christ, and it is therefore a desolating thing, the product of Satan, and an abomination in the sight of God.” So in 1919 “the disgusting thing” appeared. In time, the League gave way to the United Nations. Jehovah’s Witnesses have long exposed these human peace organizations as disgusting in God’s sight.

9, 10. How did an earlier understanding of the great tribulation influence our view of the time when “the disgusting thing” would stand in a holy place?

9 The preceding article summarized a clarified view of much of

    Hello guest!
    Hello guest!
. Is some clarification in order regarding ‘the disgusting thing standing in a holy place’? Apparently so. Jesus’ prophecy closely links the “standing in a holy place” with the outbreak of the foretold “tribulation.” Hence, even though “the disgusting thing” has long existed, the link between its “standing in a holy place” and the great tribulation should affect our thinking. How so?

10 God’s people once understood that the first phase of the great tribulation began in 1914 and that the final part would come at the battle of Armageddon. (

    Hello guest!
    Hello guest!
; compare The Watchtower, April 1, 1939, page 110.) So we can understand why it was once thought that the latter-day “disgusting thing” must have stood in a holy place soon after World War I.

11, 12. In 1969, what readjusted view of the great tribulation was presented?

11 However, in later years we have come to see things differently. On Thursday, July 10, 1969, at the “Peace on Earth” International Assembly in New York City, F. W. Franz, then vice president of the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society, gave an electrifying talk. In reviewing the previous understanding of Jesus’ prophecy, Brother Franz said: “The explanation was given that the ‘great tribulation’ had begun in 1914 C.E. and that it was not allowed to run its full course then but God stopped World War I in November of 1918. From then on God was allowing an interval for the activity of his anointed remnant of elect Christians before he let the final part of the ‘great tribulation’ resume at the battle of Armageddon.”

12 Then a significantly adjusted explanation was offered: “To correspond with the events of the first century, . . . the antitypical ‘great tribulation’ did not begin in 1914 C.E. Rather, what took place upon Jerusalem’s modern antitype in 1914-1918 was merely ‘a beginning of pangs of distress’ . . . The ‘great tribulation’ such as will not occur again is yet ahead, for it means the destruction of the world empire of false religion (including Christendom) followed by the ‘war of the great day of God the Almighty’ at Armageddon.” This meant that the entire great tribulation was yet ahead.

13. Why is it logical to say that there will be a future ‘standing in a holy place’ by “the disgusting thing”?

13 This has a direct bearing on discerning when “the disgusting thing” stands in a holy place. Recall what happened in the first century. The Romans attacked Jerusalem in 66 C.E., but they abruptly withdrew, which allowed Christian “flesh” to be saved. (

    Hello guest!
) Accordingly, we expect the great tribulation to begin soon, but it will be cut short for the sake of God’s chosen ones. Note this key point: In the ancient pattern, ‘the disgusting thing standing in a holy place’ was linked to the Roman attack under General Gallus in 66 C.E. The modern-day parallel to that attack—the outbreak of the great tribulation—is still ahead. So “the disgusting thing that causes desolation,” which has existed since 1919, apparently is yet to stand in a holy place.
    Hello guest!
How will this happen? And how can we be affected?

Ummm.....OK, sorry, this needs to be in a different topic 🙄

 

*Good news brochure -What is Jesus doing now?

When on earth, Jesus cured the sick, raised the dead, and rescued people in peril. He thereby demonstrated what he will do in the future for all obedient mankind. (

    Hello guest!
    Hello guest!
) After Jesus died, God restored him to life as a spirit person. (
    Hello guest!
) Jesus then waited at God’s right hand until Jehovah gave him power to rule as King over all the earth. (
    Hello guest!
) Now Jesus is ruling as King in heaven, and his followers are announcing that good news worldwide.—Read
    Hello guest!
    Hello guest!
.

Soon, Jesus will use his power as King to bring an end to all suffering and to those who cause it. All who exercise faith in Jesus by obeying him will enjoy life in a paradise on earth.—Read

    Hello guest!
.

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On 9/21/2019 at 3:51 PM, James Thomas Rook Jr. said:

whose credibility among sane, common sense people is ZERO ..

How’s this for credibility, you blustering blowhard? The Bills are 3-0, as this Lett lookalike points out. Or ....gasp! is it him?

How long do you think it is before Agent JackRyan  or Witness has them laying down NFL bets at HQ?

    Hello guest!

E0D5A6D8-3010-4063-A60B-201E6FA91E64.png

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5 hours ago, Anna said:

I think we get ourselves into a pickle when we try and explain WHEN will these things happen and put a kind of time frame on it. But on the other hand, can we be blamed for that? Didn't the disciples ask "when?"

Even on this forum, when anyone brings up what the Watchtower publications said about expectations for 1881, 1910, 1915, 1918, 1925, 1970's, 2000, we sometimes hear an excuse like: "Can we really be blamed for having tried to put a time frame on the time of the end? After all, don't we hear about the disciples in Acts 1:6 asking if Jesus is going to restore the Kingdom to Israel at this time?"

What makes this particular excuse troubling is that we don't expect anointed elders, or Governing Body members say that they believe they should be in a better position than other anointed ones when they are in heaven, perhaps even in a position much closer to Jesus himself. Yet can they really be blamed if they tried to do that? After all, the disciples themselves appeared to have involved themselves in such jockeying for position:

(Matthew 20:20-22) . . .Then the mother of the sons of Zebʹe·dee approached him with her sons, doing obeisance and asking for something from him. 21 He said to her: “What do you want?” She replied to him: “Give the word that these two sons of mine may sit down, one at your right hand and one at your left, in your Kingdom.” 22 Jesus answered: “You do not know what you are asking for. Can you drink the cup that I am about to drink?” They said to him: “We can.”

And of course, Jesus knew it wasn't just the mother asking which is why he addressed the two disciples themselves. But notice that the answer contains a mild rebuke when Jesus says that this is not even his to give, but it is in the Father's jurisdiction:

(Matthew 20:23) . . .but to sit down at my right hand and at my left is not mine to give, but it belongs to those for whom it has been prepared by my Father.”

Similarly, Acts 1:7 contains a similar mild rebuke to the question about the time period for end-time events:

(Acts 1:7) 7 He said to them: “It does not belong to you to know the times or seasons that the Father has placed in his own jurisdiction.

And of course, similarly, when Jesus' disciples asked him when the temple walls were going to fall, and they asked Jesus to give them a sign for when it would occur, Jesus didn't start out with a time frame, but created a context, starting out with the words:

(Matthew 24:4) 4 In answer Jesus said to them: “Look out that nobody misleads you,

(Mark 13:5) . . .So Jesus began to tell them: “Look out that nobody misleads you.

(Luke 21:8) He said: “Look out that you are not misled,. . .

There is plenty of variation in the details each gospel writer chose to report, but they all agree that these were the very first words out his mouth. And of course, some also emphasize the same "mild rebuke" that we see in Acts 1:7.

(Matthew 24:36) . . .“Concerning that day and hour nobody knows, neither the angels of the heavens nor the Son, but only the Father.

(Mark 13:32) 32 “Concerning that day or the hour nobody knows, neither the angels in heaven nor the Son, but the Father.

In fact, Luke includes some of Jesus' words from the Mount of Olives "Sermon" as words that Jesus had already told the Pharisees, when they also asked him "when the Kingdom of God was coming." (Luke 17:20). Jesus response was very clear, that it would not be by things they could observe, not by physical signs.

(Luke 17:20, NLT) One day the Pharisees asked Jesus, “When will the Kingdom of God come?” Jesus replied, “The Kingdom of God can’t be detected by visible signs. "

That's not only a perfectly good translation, it fits exactly what Jesus repeatedly said about persons looking for signs. 

(Matthew 12:39) . . .“A wicked and adulterous generation keeps on seeking a sign, but no sign will be given it except the sign of Joʹnah the prophet.

(Matthew 16:4) 4 A wicked and adulterous generation keeps seeking a sign, but no sign will be given it except the sign of Joʹnah.”. . .

(Mark 8:12) . . .So he sighed deeply in his spirit and said: “Why does this generation seek a sign? Truly I say, no sign will be given to this generation.”

This appears to be the same clear reason why Paul could say:

(1 Thessalonians 5:1) . . .Now as for the times and the seasons, brothers, you need nothing to be written to you.

This wouldn't have meant that they couldn't tell that they were already living in revolutionary, troublesome times, hard to deal with, and this should have made it clear that they should be ready at any time for something to happen within their own lifetimes. The biggest evidence that the end of all things was upon them was that Jesus had now already been in their midst performing miracles. But thinking they needed another sign to know that they had to be always ready might just be an indication of a "wicked" inclination. Jesus' disciples wanted a sign to warn them in advance when the walls of the temple were going to fall. Was it going to be in their lifetime? Could they continue to use the temple today? tomorrow? next week? next year? Jesus said they didn't need to know the timing because the end would come as a surprise, when it would be too late to do anything about it. By the time they saw Jerusalem surrounded by Roman armies, it was time to flee. That probably didn't sound rational to them from a human standpoint, since you can't easily flee through an army that's surrounding you. 

I don't believe there is any way to tell whether there is supposed to be some exact parallel in a secondary application to these Roman armies surrounding Jerusalem, or perhaps standing in the holy place itself.  Obviously the GB has long believed that there must be some direct parallel, based originally on some of the old type-antitype traditions, and they are predicting a future scenario that appears to match the first century by drawing on Matthew & Luke and bits of Revelation, Daniel, Zechariah, Ezekiel, etc.

A good question might be whether predicting a future scenario becomes more probable because it can incorporate bits and pieces from several different Bible books, or does it become less probable because it has been built upon bits and pieces of several different Bible books from different contexts. I think we are therefore back to a question of our own trust in those "bragging rights" that make us feel that a higher measure of Jehovah's spirit direction (or inspiration) has been evident among the leadership of this organization.

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That's why when I go to our weekend meetings at the Kingdom Hall, I get there early to anonymously offer my entire paycheck, converted to cash, to the "Worldwide Work".

I toss it up in the air, and all that God needs, he takes.  What falls back to the parking lot, I use for MY local needs.

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On 9/23/2019 at 11:17 PM, James Thomas Rook Jr. said:

I toss it up in the air, and all that God needs, he takes.  What falls back to the parking lot, I use for MY local needs.

Your plan might work a bit differently during a category 3+ hurricane. I think you are counting on the fact that Jehovah gets the indication of his presence across to us calmly without needing to blast us with signs:

(1 Kings 19:11, 12) 11 But He said: “Go out and stand on the mountain before Jehovah.” And look! Jehovah was passing by, and a great and strong wind was splitting mountains and breaking crags before Jehovah, but Jehovah was not in the wind. After the wind, there was an earthquake, but Jehovah was not in the earthquake. 12 After the earthquake, there was a fire, but Jehovah was not in the fire. After the fire, there was a calm, low voice.

Sorry, lost my sense of humor there for a minute.

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5 hours ago, JW Insider said:

Jesus response was very clear, that it would not be by things they could observe, not by physical signs.

(Luke 17:20, NLT) One day the Pharisees asked Jesus, “When will the Kingdom of God come?” Jesus replied, “The Kingdom of God can’t be detected by visible signs. "

Very new aspect for me too. By this i would say how WT Society and JW org application about Matt 24 and many events or "signs" that people can see in very visible and factual way have another meaning. Because, Announcing how The year 1914 and The Kingdom as Heavenly Invisible Fact with Physical and Earthly "evidences" visible to eyes, that making entering in some Special period for human, is Preaching Error.   

Perhaps Matt 24 is possible to use for 1914, as for many other periods in Human History. But Establishing of Kingdom (in 1914??) is not possible to support by "signs", because of reasoning Jesus has told, as you very well pointed out. 

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On 9/20/2019 at 10:20 PM, JW Insider said:

So even if chronology and some of the specific prophetic interpretations can result in unresolved questions, for now, it's not like this needs to be such a big part of Witness thinking. We can participate in every major aspect of our worship with joy and without being overly concerned with these unresolved questions. And when they finally are resolved, I'm sure we'll see them as relatively unimportant compared to the big things.

If a specific prophetic interpretation is what people are encouraged to put all hope and dreams in (such as 1975). just to find out that they were misled into believing its possibility as true, no longer will many enjoy their “worship” in all other aspects the organization offers.  That particular scenario remains “important” to a large number of people because of the scar it leaves on their lives.  Scars usually always remain as a memory of an event. The bigger the scar, the bigger the memory.  When a person makes an investment into a company that utilizes slick, appealing - even truthful - advertising, and which promises positive returns but eventually is exposed as a fraud, only a foolish person would keep investing his resources into it.

“Bad investment advice is usually due to one of two reasons. The first is centered around an advisor that will repeatedly place their self-interest before that of the client. The second reason leading to bad advice is an advisor's lack of knowledge and failure to perform due diligence before making recommendations and taking action. Each type of bad advice has its own consequences for the client in the short term, but in the long term they will all result in poor performance or loss of money.”  (Investopedia)

This is what the Lord of Hosts says: “Do not listen to the words of the prophets who prophesy to you. They are making you worthless. They speak visions from their own minds, not from the Lord’s mouth. Jer 23:16

It is said, “talk is cheap”; which is actually a partial quote.  From, The Saint’s Knowledge of Christ’s Love, or The Unsearchable Riches of Christ published in 1692:

“I know words are cheap, but a dram of grace is worth all the world.”   

"I call heaven and earth as witnesses against you today that I have set before you life and death, blessing and curse. Choose life so that you and your descendants may live,  love the Lord your God, obey Him, and remain faithful to Him. " Deut 30:19,20

It's crystal clear in God's word, that we are not to remain faithful to men who stumble in their predictions, but intermittently gloss it over with appealing information like a dangling carrot.   

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Known. Showing spiritual weakness only emboldens those that Satan has corrupted to think they hold the truth in any subject.

It’s not just about being false prophets but being martyrs to do the devils bidding.

When the opposition makes misleading claims that Brother Russell claimed the world would end in 1914, those in opposition have not read the Pastors publishing’s. When the opposition claims Brother Rutherford claimed the world would end in 1925, those in opposition have not read the publishing of the Brother? When those in opposition claim the Org prophesied the world would end in 1975, those in opposition only read what they want to read to make a misleading debate?

When those in opposition conduct themselves in such a way, it can only be seen one way, martyrs for the devil.

The post is framed as a question.

"What good is an internet forum for JWs?" To regular witnesses not trying to be influenced by bad works and debates, known.

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3 hours ago, divergenceKO said:

The post is framed as a question.  "What good is an internet forum for JWs?" To regular witnesses not trying to be influenced by bad works and debates, known.

I’ve said it before but not lately. The forum is good for me because with it I can hone my writing. 

If I post a Jumping Jehovah’s Witnesses photo on the JW only forum, someone will give me thunderous applause. If I truthfully say that I think such photos are stupid, someone else will counsel me to turn my frown upside down.

For the most part, I like the atmosphere of unity on what is most important, but there are times when it will not do. Better, from a writing point of view, to be here.

Here I can reference some JW foibles, even missteps, and not suffer rebuke. More importantly, here I can write something favorable about them and know that there are villains that will promptly hurl it back in my teeth. I analyze the response, like a Hadron collider scientist. Sometimes the results tell me that my comment was a logical train wreck. Even friends here will tell me so. When my remark brings mostly taunts, insults, and ridicule, then I know that I have hit bullseye.

A writer needs a muse but he needs more than a muse. He also needs a villain, so I hang here where there are villains galore.

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20 hours ago, divergenceKO said:

Showing spiritual weakness only emboldens those that Satan has corrupted to think they hold the truth in any subject.

It certainly can. You are right about that.

But it also shows spiritual weakness when we forget to question ourselves and our teaching. So having a place to formulate questions helps us clarify those questions for ourselves, even when no one comes around to provide a scriptural response to those questions. And when someone does come around to provide a scriptural response, we can be happy that we are being corrected, or if it helps us confirm an answer to our questions.

But if it's true that Satan has corrupted persons to think they hold the truth in any subject, then this is the same as accusing the Watchtower organization and its writers of being emboldened by Satan when they present their views as holding the truth in all subjects they speak about. I personally don't believe that the Watchtower writers are being emboldened by Satan. I think it's more of a matter of being excited to believe they have found all the important answers, and they therefore speak as if it must be right, as if they are speaking sacred pronouncement of God. To a point, if we are not going beyond the things written, this is a good thing:

(1 Peter 4:10, 11) . . .To the extent that each one has received a gift, use it in ministering to one another as fine stewards of God’s undeserved kindness that is expressed in various ways. 11 If anyone speaks, let him do so as speaking pronouncements from God;. . .

But there is a danger of being so sure of ourselves, that we forget to question. We forget to ask for questions. We forget to WANT questions. The JW.ORG site does not ask for questions; there is no comments section. We all know that if the teachers are actually humble like little children, they will ask questions, and so will the rest of us.

20 hours ago, divergenceKO said:

When the opposition makes misleading claims that Brother Russell claimed the world would end in 1914,

True. But how often do we also see those in opposition to truth, who know that Brother Russell predicted that other things would happen in 1914 that didn't happen? And then, as a distraction, because they are in opposition to admitting the truth, they point out that some people thought Russell predicted that the world would end in 1914.

20 hours ago, divergenceKO said:

When the opposition claims Brother Rutherford claimed the world would end in 1925, those in opposition have not read the publishing of the Brother?

True. But how often do we also see those in opposition to truth, who know that Brother Rutherford predicted that other things would happen in 1925, that didn't happen? And then, as a distraction, because they are in opposition to admitting the truth, they point out that some people thought Rutherford predicted that the world would end in 1925.

20 hours ago, divergenceKO said:

When those in opposition claim the Org prophesied the world would end in 1975, those in opposition only read what they want to read to make a misleading debate?

This can happen. We've seen it happen. But those in opposition to admitting the truth about what was actually predicted for as early as the mid-70's and as late as the end of the twentieth century, are often very anxious to create a distraction by pointing out that some people claim a specific thing was claimed for only 1975.

When a person is really making a specific false claim, then it's good to point it out. But if they are not making that claim then pointing out a different mistake that someone else is making can be a very misleading distraction.

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5 hours ago, TrueTomHarley said:

JW only forum, someone will give me thunderous applause. If I truthfully say that I think such photos are stupid, someone else will counsel me to turn my frown upside down.

 

5 hours ago, TrueTomHarley said:

so I hang here where there are villains galore.

Then there's the happy medium with no villains but friends who are realistic. These are to be found on the JW closed club here. You should try it sometime xD. (I know you've been there, but not nearly often enough)

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25 minutes ago, Anna said:

 

Then there's the happy medium with no villains but friends ... you've been there, but not nearly often enough)

This is because I was traumatized when I spotted someone violently attacking a fortune-teller, hitting her repeatedly and hard, and all she did was laugh and laugh.

I intervened. “What do you think you’re doing?” I demanded of the assailant.

”Just trying to strike a happy medium,” he replied.

Still sure you want me on the other forum?

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1 hour ago, TrueTomHarley said:

This is because I was traumatized when I spotted someone violently attacking a fortune-teller, hitting her repeatedly and hard, and all she did was laugh and laugh.

I intervened. “What do you think you’re doing?” I demanded of the assailant.

”Just trying to strike a happy medium,” he replied.

Still sure you want me on the other forum?

I think I must know you quite well by now because as I typed "medium", the thought immediately crossed my mind that you might jump at the opportunity to somehow take the Mickey.....

No, stop, leave Mickey alone

 

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8 hours ago, Anna said:

I think I must know you quite well by now because as I typed "medium", the thought immediately crossed my mind that you might jump at the opportunity to somehow take the Mickey.....

No, stop, leave Mickey alone

 

The cool thing about words is that you can build so many things with them.

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32 minutes ago, TrueTomHarley said:

The cool thing about words is that you can build so many things with them.

For the past month I have been TRYING to build a large chicken coop, but it is terribly slow. I have to weave several huge rolls of chicken wire into an overhead cover, and then support it with poles, like a circus tent.

As I was digging a hole for an overhead chicken wire support, I was talking to my rooster Speckles, scratching in the dirt beside me, who has feet and legs patterned like an alligator's hide, and as I dug I wondered out loud if chickens actually did evolve from reptiles., and if all birds evolved from reptiles.

To my surprise, Speckles replied that they actually did, but it was a tragic thing, as they did it for the frequent flier miles.

 

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Is there EVER a good forum, superchat, chat, etc?

A forum is like a classroom, different people for something and or against and there are some who attack others without reason and or jump to some spontaneous conclusion that has nothing factual backing it. And there's those who are just cooling. 

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On 9/24/2019 at 4:05 AM, JW Insider said:

I think we are therefore back to a question of our own trust in those "bragging rights" that make us feel that a higher measure of Jehovah's spirit direction (or inspiration) has been evident among the leadership of this organization.

I think the main thing to be concerned about, particularly if you live in a "fat nation",  is whether you will be a survivor of the "last days", not if you will be a survivor of Armageddon. Luke 21:34-36./Rom.10:13.  

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As for the original post, I think an internet forum for JWs is great.

It helps to get a global perspective of what effects JWs day to day. The rather anoymous nature enables people to say what they really think about things but might be a little reticent to divulge elsewhere.

Of course, there are all the usual caveats regarding imposters, but I think the positive outweighs the negative by far. Anyway, it is a good sparring ground regardless. 😊

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55 minutes ago, Outta Here said:

The rather anoymous nature enables people to say what they really think about things but might be a little reticent to divulge elsewhere.

With regard to this. It is not based on faith but rather than, wanting to hear gossip and opposing views by those that claim their witnesses when indeed they are not. What benefit would this type of worldly view provide? Here the negative outweighs the positive unless you are a participant to that negativity. Then, it would be looked at as positive.

Just because JWinsider as an owner allows it, doesn't mean its good.

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2 hours ago, Srecko Sostar said:

i have read your post from September 23. To me it seems how all is about those who are "inside" :))

Does this mean those that are insiders corrupt the good standard of conduct that is, Bible knowledge not opinion, and Christian understanding, not speculation. The only thing rendered here so far.

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25 minutes ago, divergenceKO said:

It is not based on faith but rather than, wanting to hear gossip and opposing views by those that claim their witnesses when indeed they are not. What benefit would this type of worldly view provide? Here the negative outweighs the positive unless you are a participant to that negativity.

Are you referring to yourself here?

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4 hours ago, divergenceKO said:

Just because JWinsider as an owner allows it, doesn't mean its good.

Allen (and divergenceKO): JW Insider is not an owner of this forum. I have absolutely nothing to do with the site or the owners here. You are as just as much an owner here as I am. I have no way of knowing for sure that you are not the admin, or The Librarian, or Jack or Witness or JTR.

Of course, you leave no evidence that you are any of those persons I just named but you do leave a lot of  evidence that identifies you as the same person I first encountered on this site when you called yourself Allen Smith, not that I really thought that was your real name either, of course.

But none of that matters. I just wanted you to know that your assumption was wrong.

But you are right that the forum is often not good. I won't participate on Jehovahs-Witness.com because I see too many ridiculers when a serious Bible topic is brought up. I don't claim that my own discussions here are always the right way to go about creating discussions either. I've made several mistakes, and much of what I say, upon review, is stated as if it is more than speculation and opinion. But I can promise you again that, when it comes to Bible topics, whether it sounds right or wrong, strong or weak,  fact or opinion, whether it agrees with the Watchtower or disagrees -- it is still basically just opinion. That's why I'm here: to share opinions. I hope that doesn't confuse anyone.

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1 hour ago, Arguis Maxus said:

Yes. It is time for the real owners, JWI and TTH to reveal themselves once and for all.

That's not you playing around with aliases again, just to confuse everyone, is it TTH?

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8 hours ago, divergenceKO said:

What benefit would this type of worldly view provide?

Wording with "worldly View" about JW Club like this is not right way to describe what Human doing, whether they are JW members or not. Human interest is to be curios about many things. 

8 hours ago, divergenceKO said:

Does this mean those that are insiders corrupt the good standard of conduct that is, Bible knowledge not opinion, and Christian understanding, not speculation. The only thing rendered here so far.

How is possible that you read this from my comment? I just made accent how need for questioning, asking, and state of confusing about some issues is normal for those that are "inside". 

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8 hours ago, JW Insider said:

That's not you playing around with aliases again, just to confuse everyone, is it TTH?

As Chickenman said to the ill-tempered Miss Helpinger, when he woke her out of a dead sleep over the phone and she had seen through his muffled voice instantly: “Who’s the Winged Warrior?”

Very well. If Arguis cannot get the job done, it may be time to send in Cantanqueronius. He doesn’t take so kindly to being outed.

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1 hour ago, Arguis Maxus said:

time to send in Cantanqueronius. He doesn’t take so kindly to being outed.

I wouldn't think of it. I promise.

By the way, while I'm here, can we renegotiate that 95/5 split of these profits that we agreed on? I'm not feeling the love, and would like to change it to 96/4. Have your people call my people! After I finish the back nine, we'll do lunch. OK?

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17 hours ago, JW Insider said:

That's not you playing around with aliases again, just to confuse everyone, is it TTH?

This just proves who the owners really are. Thank you.

Some of us now know who the real Admin and Asst Admin are, TTH, and JWinsider. Some of us also know TTH gives JWinsider the position to "delete" people that are being honest and disagree. You can lie to the people some of time but you can't escape the inevitable when both of you start Instant messaging to get someone banned.

This just means the jokes on both of you.

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2 minutes ago, divergenceKO said:

Some of us now know who the real Admin and Asst Admin are, TTH, and JWinsider.

Shh. don’t tell anybody.

Besides, I don’t trust that JWI as far as I can spit. He is scheming to become top dog.

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18 hours ago, divergenceKO said:

Some of us also know TTH gives JWinsider the position to "delete" people that are being honest and disagree.

And if I do a good enough job doing that, TTH will finally give me the keys to delete people who are being dishonest and who agree. But he's a tough taskmaster, gathering where he does not winnow, reaping where he does not sow, etc. etc. And for some unknown reason he always carries a tape measure with him to see how far he can spit!  (?!?!?)

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1 hour ago, JW Insider said:

TTH will finally give me the keys to delete people who are being dishonest and who agree.

I doubt it. You're still here. JTR is still here. You ban someone who can show the dishonesty that compromises your ability to continue that dishonesty, while attempting to have people think by word manipulation you're ahead on the debates. I believe you also call, down-voting (spamming), more dishonesty. This is the only way you can get ex-witnesses to up=vote that dishonesty. It is silly to try injecting humor with something, you and TTH have been caught with. Anna's smiley face won't change what is already known by some of us, with your actions.

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3 hours ago, divergenceKO said:

You're still here.

So is Allen Smith.

3 hours ago, divergenceKO said:

You ban someone

I have never banned anyone. And if I had the power to ban someone from this forum, I wouldn't.

I don't believe it's useful to ban anyone from an Internet forum. The Internet is full of persons dealing with obsessive-compulsive disorders, manic-depressive tendencies, and a host of other disorders and tendencies and social difficulties. Internet forums attract such persons and we can never tell who is suffering from any of these issues and who isn't. And perhaps that often goes for admins and site owners, too. Who of us when trying to judge others of such things, is fully aware of our own mental and social failings?

As far as I'm concerned, everyone can stay, and forum software should allow individuals the ability to choose who they choose to read from. A forum owner or admin should have the ability to perform some actions against a specific post, if there is good reason and if other persons are bringing it to their attention. But they should not take it upon themselves to remove anyone's posting privileges, and they should definitely not delete all of that person's past posts.  The rebuke of the majority should be enough for them.


    Hello guest!

(2 Cor 2:6) Most of you have already pointed out the wrong that person did, and this is punishment enough for what was done.

I don't think any of us really can know the effect of upvoting and downvoting on others. I believe that the only person I have ever down-voted, at least in the last few years, is JTR. Never any of Allen's or his minions. I think JTR can take it, and even more of his posts have deserved a downvote, in my opinion, than the ones I have actually downvoted. Upvotes and laughs I give out liberally, but I don't use the "Ha-Ha" as a way of expressing haughty derision the way that Allen and most of his other identities were apt to use it.

Some obviously come here because they love the banter, they love to have their ideas challenged, they love to be provocative, or they love to find persons they can feel 'holier than.' Some come here because they can learn interesting things about subjects they are interested in, things they might not have considered. In the case of Witnesses, I think that many of us enjoyed the challenge of meeting that preacher when out in service who would challenge us and we'd stay for half an hour. (Guilty!) I used to start Bible Studies by the dozens, literally, with college students, for up to two years per study, and many would come up with some difficulties I had never heard of before. A very low percentage were ever baptized, about 3 out of 30. Now, we just don't do that anymore.  Perhaps some of us miss it.

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27 minutes ago, JW Insider said:

 I think that many of us enjoyed the challenge of meeting that preacher when out in service who would challenge us and we'd stay for half an hour. (Guilty!)

It can be awkward running into one of these characters. Sometimes they start fights with us. Sometimes (alas) we start fights with them.

Recently I spoke with one fundamentalist type and it threatened to go that way. Finally learning, after all these years, I said: “Look, you think we’re doing it all wrong. We think you’re doing it all wrong. We’ll steal members from your church in a heartbeat if we can, and you’ll do the same to us. Let’s just agree on those things.

That out of the way, we were able to enjoy a fine conversation on the importance of faith and the challenge of maintaining it today, knowing that we could always come back and haggle out those things later.

With liberal clergy, I sometimes just ask them to describe what they do in the course of a day. I don’t assume, as I might have when I was younger, that the answer will be: “Nothing.”

Not too long ago I hopped out of the car to do a minister’s home. A sister of the old school wanted to accompany me, but I said: “No, you’ll get in a fight with him.” She felt bad, so did I, and I did apologize. Still, I know how it would have gone:

”Interesting. Thank you for that. Now let’s see what the Bible has to say.”

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@JW Insider Now that you mentioned that, some who have thr ban hammer sometimes use it with bad intentions. An example would be if you logically defeat an admin in a discussion of, for instance, there are superhero junkies who take it to the extreme, prove the admin wrong and embarrass him or her in front of other users, the ban hammer will be thrown.

There was a forum I use to be on that has some weird global announcement. When someone gets banned or perma banned, large red text will appear on the screen in your English preference and everyone can make comment in a global chat.

At the end of the day tho, you give someone power to do something there's no telling what they'll do.

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41 minutes ago, Equivocation said:

some who have thr ban hammer sometimes use it with bad intentions.

I'm sure that has happened before.  Although it sounds like a completely different kind of forum where such experiences were known, where the admin was involved with or cared about the topics being discussed. I get the feeling that the admin here is probably not even happy that most of the posts and activity are centered around a specific religion, when he or she would evidently like to see it broaden out. The posts from the admin are almost always outside of the topics that most of us participate in.

BTW, others in the past have pointed out that you have often used a unique vocabulary on this forum (anachronistic slang). Because I have probably created suspicion in the past by pointing out evidence that associates various accounts with BTK/Allen/divergenceOK/etc., I just wanted you to know that I have never considered you @Equivocation to be one of his aliases. This name may very well be an secondary account for someone else, but not related to any from BTK/Allen/divergenceOK/etc.

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11 hours ago, Equivocation said:

prove the admin wrong and embarrass him or her in front of other users, the ban hammer will be thrown.

Doesn’t happen here. After all that I have said about the Librarian, that old hen, I am still here to talk about it.

11 hours ago, JW Insider said:

I get the feeling that the admin here is probably not even happy that most of the posts and activity are centered around a specific religion

Mr. Admin takes his seat at the 17th Annual Conference of Internet Magificents. “Seen the latest stats for users on the WorldNewsMedia forum?” he casually mentions to the Reddit founder. “Pretty, impressive, isn’t it?”

“Big deal, they’re all religious nuts,” the latter answers. Come back when you have people who don’t think the world is flat!”

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On 10/2/2019 at 10:48 AM, divergenceKO said:

you [JWI] and TTH have been caught with. Anna's smiley face won't change what is already known by some of us, with your actions.

You haven’t been around long enough to discern how it works here:

CMP takes the snap and hands off to JWI. JWI looks for a receiver. TTH is way way out there, but usually flubs the catch.  JTR is also wide open, but he generally gets distracted in cursing out the coach. Melinda looks open. So is Aruana.  JWI throws, hoping for the best. 

Allen Smith, wearing a Guy Fawkes mask so that you don’t know which one he is, intercepts. He charges headlong and bloodies anyone in his path. He gets ejected for unsportsmanlike conduct.

After a few such plays, JWI punts. Witness takes the catch and insists that she should have had the ball all along. Sometimes agent JackRyan takes it instead and calls up to a dozen plays at once. Either of them look for receivers. Matthew 457845 is open. So is Shiwiiiiiii. So is Srecko (hehehe). So is JTR, who technically is on the other team, but 85% of the time it is impossible to tell. 

The thrower hesitates. All of these receivers are known to be distracted by Anna’s smiley face, and whenever that happens, they either miss the catch completely or run headlong into the goalposts. Hoping for the best, he or she throws anyway.

Allen Smith, wearing a Guy Fawkes mask so that you don’t know which one he is, intercepts. He charges headlong and bloodies anyone in his path. He gets ejected for unsportsmanlike conduct.

After a few rounds of this, the Librarian, that old hen, blows the play dead, and calls for another one. Admin puts his head in his hands and cries. He once supposed that web hosting would be his path to respectability.

Understand now?

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54 minutes ago, TrueTomHarley said:

Hoping for the best, he or she throws anyway.

It landed foul on the grass
The players tried for a forward pass
With the jester on the sidelines in a cast
Now the half-time air was sweet perfume
While sergeants played a marching tune
We all got up to dance
Oh, but we never got the chance
'Cause the players tried to take the field
The marching band refused to yield
Do you recall what was revealed
 
        --from
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1 hour ago, JW Insider said:
It landed foul on the grass
The players tried for a forward pass
With the jester on the sidelines in a cast
Now the half-time air was sweet perfume
While sergeants played a marching tune
We all got up to dance
Oh, but we never got the chance
'Cause the players tried to take the field
The marching band refused to yield
Do you recall what was revealed
 
        --from
    Hello guest!
--

When they asked Don McClain what his song meant, he answered that it meant he would never have to work another day in his life.

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    • Eric Ouellet

      Mettez votre confiance en Jéhovah
       
      Ouvrons nos bibles en Psaumes 37:3,4 regardons un conseil de notre Dieu Jéhovah:
      “Aie confiance en Jéhovah et fais le bien; (...) délecte-toi en Jéhovah.” — PSAUME 37:3, 4.
      AU PREMIER siècle de notre ère, les chefs religieux juifs prétendaient adorer Dieu, mais ils n’avaient pas confiance en lui: ils violaient ses commandements et persécutaient ses représentants (Matthieu 15:3; Jean 15:20). En conséquence, "leur maison fut abandonnée" par Jéhovah (Matthieu 23:38). En l’an 66, les armées romaines détruisirent Jérusalem et son temple, ce qui entraîna la mort d’un grand nombre de chefs religieux et de leurs disciples. Cependant, les personnes qui avaient confiance en Jéhovah furent protégées, car elles avaient suivi l’avertissement de ses porte-parole et elles étaient allées se réfugier dans un lieu sûr. — Matthieu 24:15-22; Luc 21:20-24.
      En ces derniers jours du système de choses,  mettons-nous notre confiance en Jéhovah, le vrai Dieu? Obéissons-nous à ses commandements et fesons-nous sa volonté, ou bien imiton-nous les chefs religieux du Ier siècle que Dieu abandonna? Quelle mode de vie avons-nous de besoin à notre époque, pour espérer bénéficier de la protection divine parce que nous avons confiance en Jéhovah et que nous agissons pour le bien’? — Psaume 37:3.
      Il y a plusieurs années, le pape Jean-Paul II a déclaré que “la survie de l’humanité tout entière était gravement menacée”. Il a mis l’accent sur “les résultats qu’obtiennent divers groupements religieux lorsqu’ils s’unissent pour tenter de conjurer cette menace”. C’est la volonté de Dieu, a-t-il dit, que les responsables religieux “travaillent ensemble” à “la paix et [à] la réconciliation”. Toutefois, si telle est sa volonté, pourquoi Dieu n’a-t-il pas béni les efforts qui sont accomplis en ce sens depuis des siècles? Parce que ces religions ne mettent pas véritablement leur confiance dans le moyen que Dieu a prévu pour instaurer la paix: son Royaume céleste (Matthieu 6:9, 10). Au lieu de cela, elles accordent leur soutien à la politique et aux guerres des nations. En conséquence, au cours des guerres, les croyants d’une nation ont tué les croyants d’une autre nation, et ils ont même tué certains de leurs coreligionnaires. Ainsi, des catholiques ont tué des catholiques, des protestants ont tué des protestants, et il en fut de même dans bien d’autres religions. Cependant, de véritables frères spirituels peuvent-ils s’entre-tuer, tout en prétendant servir Dieu?
      Jésus a établi le critère d'un mode vie qui apporte l'Amour et la protection de son Père,  lorsqu'ils a dit à ses disciples: “Je vous donne un commandement nouveau: que vous vous aimiez les uns les autres, et que, comme je vous ai aimés, vous aussi aimez les uns les autres. Par là tous saurons que vous êtes mes disciples: si vous avez de l’amour entre vous.” (Jean 13:34, 35). Par conséquent, ceux qui pratiquent le vrai mode de vie spirituel doivent s’aimer les uns les autres. Il s’agissait "d’un commandement nouveau”, car Jésus a déclaré: “Que, comme je vous ai aimés, vous aussi vous vous aimiez les uns les autres.” Jésus était disposé à se dessaisir de sa vie pour ses disciples; et ceux-ci doivent être prêts à faire de même: non pas ôter la vie à leurs compagnons dans la foi, mais sacrifier si nécessaire leur vie. C’est en ce sens que ce commandement était nouveau, car la Loi mosaïque n’allait pas si loin.
      Voici ce qu’on peut lire dans la Parole de Dieu: “Si quelqu’un déclare: ‘J’aime Dieu’, mais qu’il haïsse son frère, c’est un menteur. En effet, celui qui n’aime pas son frère, qu’il a vu, ne peut pas aimer Dieu, qu’il n’a pas vu. Et voici le commandement que nous tenons de lui: que celui qui aime Dieu aime aussi son frère.” (1 Jean 4:20, 21). Grâce à cet amour, ceux qui placent leur confiance en Jéhovah connaissent une véritable unité internationale. Paul déclare, en effet, en 1 Corinthiens 1:10: “Je vous exhorte, frères, (...) à parler tous en parfait accord, et à ce qu’il n’y ait pas de divisions parmi vous, mais que vous soyez étroitement unis dans le même esprit et dans la même pensée.” — Voir 1 Jean 3:10-12.
      Selon une encyclopédie (The World Book Encyclopedia), 55 millions de personnes ont été tuées lors de la Seconde Guerre mondiale, exceptés les Témoins de Jéhovah, des membres de toutes les grandes religions ont pris part à ce massacre. Aucune de ces vies humaines n’a été ôtée par un témoin de Jéhovah, car les témoins ont obéi au commandement de s’aimer les uns les autres et ils ont refusé de prendre part aux guerres des nations. Nombre d’entre eux ont été livrés au martyre en raison de leur neutralité, mais ils avaient pu dire, reprenant les paroles de l’apôtre Paul: ‘Nous sommes purs du sang de tous les hommes.’ — Actes 20:26.
      L’aumônier catholique appartenant à l’unité qui a lâché la bombe atomique sur le Japon en 1945 a récemment déclaré: “Depuis 17 siècles, l’Église présente la guerre sous un jour respectable. Elle fait croire aux gens qu’il s’agit là d’une honorable profession chrétienne. Ce n’est pas vrai. On nous a endoctrinés. (...) Jésus n’a jamais enseigné le dogme de la guerre juste. (...) Rien dans la vie ou l’enseignement du Christ ne laisse supposer que s’il est condamnable d’utiliser la bombe atomique pour réduire en cendres les humains, il n’est pas condamnable de le faire au moyen du napalm ou d’un lance-flammes.”
      Voici ce qu’on pouvait lire dans un quotidien londonien (Catholic Herald): "Les premiers chrétiens (...) respectaient scrupuleusement les paroles de Jésus et refusaient, même au prix de leur vie, de se laisser enrôler dans l’armée romaine. L’Histoire du monde aurait-elle été différente si l’Église était restée attachée à ce principe? (...) Si, aujourd’hui, les Églises toutes ensemble condamnaient la guerre (...), et qu’ainsi tous leurs membres se sentent tenus d’être, comme les premiers chrétiens, des objecteurs de conscience, la paix régnerait sur la terre. Toutefois, nous savons que cela n’arrivera."
      Les multiples religions du monde ont donc gravement transigé avec les lois de Dieu. Elles n’ont pas montré plus de confiance que les Pharisiens. “Publiquement ils déclarent connaître Dieu, mais ils le renient par leurs œuvres, car ce sont des gens détestables, désobéissants et non approuvés pour quelque œuvre bonne que ce soit.” (Tite 1:16). En conséquence, comme il avait abandonné le judaïsme hypocrite du Ier siècle, de même, à notre époque, Dieu a abandonné ces religions qui agissent contre les lois morales de Dieu. — Matthieu 15:9, 14.
      Ceux qui ont confiance en Jéhovah survivront
      Ne mettez pas votre confiance dans les solutions humaines aux problèmes du monde. Bien plutôt, confiez-vous en Celui qui peut tenir ses promesses (Josué 23:14). Voyez, par exemple, les événements qui se sont produits au VIIIe siècle avant notre ère, aux jours du roi Ézéchias de Juda. À son sujet, la Bible déclare: “Il faisait ce qui est droit aux yeux de Jéhovah.” (2 Rois 18:3). À l’époque d’Ézéchias, l’imposante Puissance mondiale assyrienne se dressa contre Jérusalem. Le porte-parole de Sennachérib, roi d’Assyrie, vint exiger la reddition de Jérusalem. Il déclara: “Voici ce qu’a dit le roi: ‘Qu’Ézéchias ne vous trompe pas, car il ne peut vous délivrer de ma main! Et qu’Ézéchias ne vous fasse pas vous confier en Jéhovah.’” — 2 Rois 18:29, 30.
      Que fit Ézéchias? La Bible nous dit: “Ézéchias se mit à prier devant Jéhovah et dit: ‘Ô Jéhovah, Dieu d’Israël, qui es assis sur les chérubins, toi seul tu es le vrai Dieu de tous les royaumes de la terre. Tu as fait, toi, les cieux et la terre. Incline ton oreille, ô Jéhovah, et entends. Ouvre tes yeux, ô Jéhovah, et vois, et entends les paroles de Sennachérib, qu’il a envoyées pour provoquer le Dieu vivant. (...) ô Jéhovah, notre Dieu, s’il te plaît, sauve-nous de sa main, pour que tous les royaumes de la terre sachent que toi, ô Jéhovah, tu es Dieu, toi seul.’” — 2 Rois 19:15-19.
      Jéhovah a entendu cette prière et a envoyé le prophète Ésaïe auprès d’Ézéchias pour lui dire: “Voici ce qu’a dit Jéhovah au sujet du roi d’Assyrie: ‘Il n’entrera pas dans cette ville, et il n’y lancera pas de flèche, et il ne se présentera pas devant elle avec un bouclier, et il n’élèvera pas contre elle un rempart de siège.’” Ézéchias devait-il rassembler une armée pour affronter l’Assyrie? Non, il devait placer sa confiance en Jéhovah; et c’est ce qu’il fit. Que se passa-t-il? “L’ange de Jéhovah sortit et abattit dans le camp des Assyriens cent quatre-vingt-cinq mille hommes.” En outre, Sennachérib fut châtié pour avoir défié Jéhovah et ses serviteurs; en effet, il fut plus tard assassiné par ses propres fils. Ainsi, conformément à la parole de Jéhovah, pas une flèche ne fut lancée contre Jérusalem. — 2 Rois 19:32-37.
      Alors que doivent faire les gens de toutes les nations pour survivre à la fin de l’actuel système de choses?
      Des événements semblables vont se produire à notre époque. Ceux qui se confient en Jéhovah survivront aux attaques et à la destruction du monde. “Ceux qui connaissent ton nom se confieront en toi, car tu ne quitteras assurément pas ceux qui te cherchent, ô Jéhovah!” (Psaume 9:10). Néanmoins, avant de détruire ce monde cruel, Jéhovah invite tous les humains sincères à s’approcher de lui pour trouver la sécurité. Ceux qui acceptent son invitation constituent une “grande foule” de personnes qui “viennent de la grande tribulation” et qui sont issues de toutes les nations. Ces personnes survivront à la fin du système de choses actuel parce qu’elles ont confiance en Jéhovah et le servent “jour et nuit”. — Révélation 7:9-15.
      La “grande foule” répond à l’appel qui retentit de plus en plus puissamment dans le monde entier, conformément à la prophétie consignée en Ésaïe 2:2, 3: “Et il adviendra sans faute, dans la période finale des jours, que la montagne de la maison de Jéhovah [son véritable culte] se trouvera solidement établie (...). Et assurément de nombreux peuples iront et diront: ‘Venez et montons à la montagne de Jéhovah (...) et il nous instruira de ses voies, et nous marcherons dans ses sentiers.’”  verset 4 dit: “Et ils devront forger leurs épées en socs de charrue et leurs lances en cisailles à émonder. Une nation ne lèvera pas l’épée contre une nation, et ils n’apprendront plus la guerre.”
      Un bel avenir
      Jéhovah offre le plus bel avenir qu’on puisse imaginer à ceux qui mettent leur confiance en lui. Lorsqu’il remplacera les vieilles structures de la société par de nouvelles, les humains qui vivront sur la terre ne connaîtront ni la crainte, ni la méfiance, ni la misère, ni l’injustice, ni le crime. Il n’y aura plus de guerres ou d’avortements pour priver les humains de la vie. Révélation 21:4 promet même que “la mort ne sera plus; ni deuil, ni cri, ni douleur ne seront plus”, cela pour toujours.
      Comme Jésus l’a promis, avec le temps la terre deviendra un paradis (Luc 23:43). Ceux qui mettent leur confiance en Jéhovah pourront vivre éternellement dans ce Paradis, car la mort disparaîtra. Les paroles de Michée 4:4 se réaliseront: “Ils seront assis chacun sous sa vigne et sous son figuier, et il n’y aura personne qui les fasse trembler.” Vous imaginez-vous vivre dans une société où vous pourriez avoir confiance en tout le monde? Pourquoi en sera-t-il ainsi? Parce que, comme le dit Ésaïe 54:13, “tous tes fils seront des personnes enseignées par Jéhovah, et la paix de tes fils sera abondante”.
      Toutefois, la confiance que les millions de Témoins de Jéhovah portent à Dieu leur procure dès aujourd’hui des bienfaits. Par exemple, les serviteurs de Jéhovah ont moins de risques de contracter le cancer du poumon parce qu’ils obéissent à ses lois et à ses principes relatifs au tabac. Vivant dans un milieu moralement pur, ils sont moins menacés par l’épidémie mondiale des maladies sexuellement transmissibles, telles que le SIDA. Parce qu’ils ne se droguent pas, ils sont à l’abri de maladies que de nombreux toxicomanes par voie intraveineuse ont contractées, maladies qui peuvent altérer les facultés mentales et entraîner la mort. Étant donné qu’ils n’acceptent pas de transfusions sanguines, les serviteurs de Jéhovah sont bien mieux protégés contre les maladies véhiculées par le sang. Chaque année, aux États-Unis, l’une de ces maladies, l’hépatite virale, tue ou lèse de façon permanente plus de dix mille personnes ayant reçu du sang.
      Même si certains de ceux qui se confient en Jéhovah meurent à cause de leur âge, de la maladie ou bien des suites d’un accident, Jéhovah viendra à leur secours. Il les ramènera à la vie par le moyen de la résurrection. C’est pourquoi l’apôtre Paul nous encourage à ‘avoir confiance, non pas en nous-mêmes, mais dans le Dieu qui relève les morts’. — 2 Corinthiens 1:9.
      Jéhovah soutiendra toujours ses serviteurs fidèles
      Souvenez-vous que “le monde entier gît au pouvoir du méchant”, Satan le Diable (1 Jean 5:19). Par conséquent, si vous vous confiez en Dieu, Satan et le monde qu’il domine s’opposeront à vous; ils essaieront de saper votre foi en vous ridiculisant ou en vous persécutant, comme ils l’ont fait à Jésus. Après qu’il eut été cloué sur le poteau de supplice, “les passants parlaient de lui en mal, hochant la tête et disant: ‘(...) Si tu es fils de Dieu, descends du poteau de supplice!’ Pareillement les prêtres en chef aussi se moquaient de lui, ainsi que les scribes et les anciens, et disaient: ‘Il en a sauvé d’autres; il ne peut pas se sauver lui-même! (...) Il a mis sa confiance en Dieu; qu’Il le délivre maintenant, s’Il veut de lui.’” — Matthieu 27:39-43.
      Trois jours après ces événements, Dieu a délivré Jésus en le ressuscitant d’entre les morts. Les moqueurs de la génération d’alors ont été quant à eux massacrés ou emmenés en esclavage par les armées romaines. Puisque le Christ, en sa qualité de Roi du Royaume céleste de Dieu, présidera à la résurrection, si ces individus sont ressuscités, il leur faudra se soumettre à celui-là même dont ils se seront moqués 2 000 ans auparavant! Oui, Jéhovah défend ses serviteurs, qui diront: “En Dieu j’ai mis ma confiance. Je n’aurai pas peur. Que peut me faire l’homme tiré du sol?” — Psaume 56:11.
      Voici ce que Jéhovah déclare à propos de ses serviteurs: “Béni l’homme valide qui met sa confiance en Jéhovah, et dont Jéhovah est devenu l’assurance! Et certes il deviendra comme un arbre planté près des eaux, qui envoie ses racines près du cours d’eau; et il ne verra pas quand la chaleur arrivera, mais son feuillage restera touffu. Et dans l’année de la sécheresse il ne s’inquiétera pas, et il ne cessera pas de produire du fruit.” Il dit également: “Maudit l’homme valide qui met sa confiance dans l’homme tiré du sol et qui fait de la chair son bras, et dont le cœur se détourne de Jéhovah! Et assurément il deviendra comme un arbre solitaire dans la plaine déserte et il ne verra pas quand le bien arrivera.” — Jérémie 17:5-8.
      En ces temps décisifs, donc, "ayons confiance en Jéhovah et faisons le bien; résidons sur la terre et agissons avec fidélité. De plus, délectons-nous en Jéhovah, et il nous donnera les demandes de notre cœur". (Psaume 37:3, 4.) Que soient exaucées les demandes que vous ferez, entre autres celle de goûter le don de la vie éternelle dans le monde nouveau et juste promis par Dieu, Celui en qui nous pouvons avoir confiance!

      · 0 replies
    • folens  »  Eric Ouellet

      Bonjour Eric, merci pour cet exposé sur Hanna, Bonne journée. Michel
      ENTRETIEN AVEC DIEU.pptx
      · 1 reply
    • Eric Ouellet

      LA FOI D'HANNA ENVERS DIEU APPORTE SA RÉCOMPENSE
      UNE femme de foi adresse une prière à Jéhovah. Convaincue que c’est Dieu qui l’a relevée de la poussière, transformant son abattement en exultation, elle le loue à haute voix.
      Cette femme, c’est Hanna. Qu’est-ce qui explique son spectaculaire changement d’état d’âme ? Pourquoi est-elle à présent si joyeuse ? En quoi ce qu’elle a vécu peut-il nous être utile ? Intéressons-nous à son histoire.
      Une famille sous pression
      Hanna est l’une des deux femmes d’Elqana, un Lévite de la région d’Éphraïm (1 Samuel 1:1, 2a ; 1 Chroniques 6:33, 34). Bien que n’entrant pas dans le dessein originel de Dieu pour l’humanité, la polygamie est autorisée et réglementée sous la Loi mosaïque. Elle est néanmoins une source fréquente de discorde. La vie de cette famille, qui pourtant adore Jéhovah, en témoigne.
      Hanna est stérile, tandis que Peninna, l’autre femme d’Elqana, a plusieurs enfants. Peninna se comporte en rivale. — 1 Samuel 1:2b.
      Pour une Israélite, la stérilité est un déshonneur, et même un signe de la défaveur divine. Mais, dans le cas de Hanna, rien n’indique que son incapacité de procréer soit liée à la désapprobation de Dieu. Peninna ne la console pas pour autant ; elle se prévaut au contraire de son statut de mère pour l’humilier.
      Au sanctuaire de Jéhovah
      Malgré ces tensions, la famille entreprend le voyage annuel en direction du sanctuaire de Jéhovah, à Shilo, pour y offrir des sacrifices. L’aller-retour de quelque 60 kilomètres se fait vraisemblablement à pied. Cet événement doit être particulièrement pénible pour Hanna. En effet, Peninna et ses enfants reçoivent plusieurs portions du sacrifice de communion, alors que Hanna, elle, n’en reçoit qu’une seule. Peninna trouve là une opportunité supplémentaire de la blesser et de la mettre dans l’embarras ; il semble que Jéhovah ait “ fermé sa matrice ”, et elle ne manque pas de le lui rappeler. Tous les ans, c’est le même calvaire. Tous les ans, Hanna pleure et cesse de manger. Ces voyages qui normalement devraient la mettre en joie la plongent dans une profonde détresse. Hanna se rend néanmoins chaque année au sanctuaire de Jéhovah. — 1 Samuel 1:3-7.
      Voyez-vous en quoi Hanna est un bel exemple ? Comment réagissez-vous lorsque vous êtes déprimé ? Vous isolez-vous et évitez-vous les contacts avec vos compagnons chrétiens ? Ce n’est pas ce qu’a fait Hanna. Les rassemblements avec les adorateurs de Jéhovah étaient pour elle une habitude de vie. Même face à des circonstances éprouvantes, il devrait en être de même pour nous. — Psaume 26:12 ; 122:1 ; Proverbes 18:1 ; Hébreux 10:24, 25.
      Elqana tente de réconforter Hanna et il l’amène à exprimer ses sentiments profonds. “ Hanna, pourquoi pleures-tu et pourquoi ne manges-tu pas ? Pourquoi ton cœur a-t-il mal ? lui demande-t-il. Est-ce que je ne vaux pas mieux pour toi que dix fils ? ” (1 Samuel 1:8). Peut-être n’a-t-il pas conscience de la malveillance de Peninna. Et peut-être Hanna préfère-t-elle se taire plutôt que de se plaindre. Quoi qu’il en soit, cette femme spirituelle se tourne vers Jéhovah dans la prière pour retrouver la paix intérieure.
      Le vœu de Hanna
      Les sacrifices de communion étaient consommés dans le sanctuaire. Après avoir quitté la salle à manger, Hanna prie Dieu (1 Samuel 1:9, 10). “ Ô Jéhovah des armées, implore-t-elle, si tu ne manques pas de regarder l’affliction de ton esclave et si vraiment tu te souviens de moi, si tu n’oublies pas ton esclave et si vraiment tu donnes à ton esclave un descendant mâle, oui je le donnerai à Jéhovah pour tous les jours de sa vie, et le rasoir ne viendra pas sur sa tête. ” — 1 Samuel 1:11.
      La prière de Hanna est précise. Elle demande un fils, et elle fait le vœu que cet enfant sera toute sa vie un naziréen de Dieu (Nombres 6:1-5). Ce vœu nécessite l’approbation de son mari, et certaines actions ultérieures d’Elqana montrent qu’il approuve l’engagement pris par sa chère femme. — Nombres 30:6-8.
      À cause de la manière dont Hanna prie, le grand prêtre Éli la croit ivre. Il voit effectivement ses lèvres frémir, mais il ne l’entend pas parler. C’est qu’en fait Hanna prie dans son cœur, avec ferveur (1 Samuel 1:12-14). Imaginez ce qu’elle ressent lorsque le grand prêtre l’accuse d’être ivre ! Pourtant, elle lui répond respectueusement. Comprenant alors que Hanna était en train de prier “ dans l’abondance de [son] inquiétude et de [son] dépit ”, il lui dit : “ Que le Dieu d’Israël accorde ta requête. ” (1 Samuel 1:15-17). Sur ces paroles, Hanna s’en va ; elle mange et “ son visage ne par[aît] plus soucieux ”. — 1 Samuel 1:18.
      Que nous enseigne tout cela ? Lorsque nous prions Jéhovah à propos de nos inquiétudes, nous pouvons lui exprimer ce que nous ressentons et lui adresser des requêtes sincères. Si nous avons fait tout notre possible pour résoudre le problème, alors nous devrions laisser les choses entre ses mains. C’est ce qu’il y a de mieux à faire. — Proverbes 3:5, 6.
      Après une prière fervente, il est fréquent que des serviteurs de Jéhovah ressentent une sérénité comparable à celle que Hanna a éprouvée. Voici ce qu’a écrit l’apôtre Paul au sujet de la prière : “ Ne vous inquiétez de rien, mais en tout, par la prière et la supplication avec action de grâces, faites connaître vos requêtes à Dieu ; et la paix de Dieu, qui surpasse toute pensée, gardera vos cœurs et vos facultés mentales par le moyen de Christ Jésus. ” (Philippiens 4:6, 7). Après nous être déchargés de notre fardeau sur Jéhovah, nous devons le laisser s’en occuper. Puis, comme dans le cas de Hanna, il n’y a plus lieu de s’inquiéter. — Psaume 55:22.
      Un fils “ prêté ” à Jéhovah
      Dieu se tourne alors vers Hanna. Peu après, elle porte un enfant. Elle met au monde un garçon (1 Samuel 1:19, 20). C’est l’une des rares fois où la Bible fait état de la responsabilité de Dieu dans la naissance de l’un de ses serviteurs. L’enfant d’Elqana et de Hanna, Samuel, deviendra effectivement le prophète de Jéhovah, un prophète qui jouera un rôle important dans la mise en place de la monarchie d’Israël.
      Il est certain que Hanna parle de Jéhovah à Samuel dès sa petite enfance. Mais oublie-t-elle le vœu qu’elle a fait ? Absolument pas ! “ Dès que le garçon sera sevré, je devrai l’amener ; il devra paraître devant Jéhovah et habiter là pour des temps indéfinis ”, déclare-t-elle. Et en effet, une fois l’enfant sevré — peut-être à l’âge de trois ans ou un peu plus —, elle l’amène au sanctuaire, comme elle l’avait promis. — 1 Samuel 1:21-24 ; 2 Chroniques 31:16.
      Après avoir offert un sacrifice à Jéhovah, Hanna et son mari présentent Samuel à Éli. Hanna tient certainement la main de son petit garçon lorsqu’elle dit à Éli : “ Pardon, mon seigneur ! Par la vie de ton âme, mon seigneur, je suis la femme qui se tenait près de toi, en ce lieu, pour prier Jéhovah. C’est à propos de ce garçon que je priais, pour que Jéhovah m’accorde ma requête, ce que je lui demandais. Et moi, à mon tour, je l’ai prêté à Jéhovah. Oui, tous les jours qu’il sera, c’est quelqu’un de demandé pour Jéhovah. ” Ainsi commence, pour Samuel, une vie au service de Dieu. — 1 Samuel 1:25-28 ; 2:11.
      Le temps passe ; bien sûr Hanna n’oublie pas son fils. Les Écritures relatent : “ Sa mère avait coutume de lui faire un petit manteau sans manches, et elle le lui montait, d’année en année, quand elle montait avec son mari pour sacrifier le sacrifice annuel. ” (1 Samuel 2:19). Hanna prie sans aucun doute pour Samuel. Tous les ans, lorsqu’elle lui rend visite, elle l’encourage à coup sûr à demeurer fidèle dans son service pour Dieu.
      Pendant l’une de ces visites, Éli bénit les parents du garçon. Il déclare à Elqana : “ Que Jéhovah t’assigne une descendance de cette femme, à la place du prêt qui a été prêté à Jéhovah. ” C’est ainsi que le couple est récompensé par la naissance de trois autres fils et de deux filles. — 1 Samuel 2:20, 21.
      Quel formidable exemple pour les parents chrétiens ! Beaucoup de mères et de pères se montrent, eux aussi, disposés à prêter, figurément parlant, leurs enfants à Jéhovah ; en effet, ils les encouragent à entreprendre une forme de service à plein temps, même si cela implique que leur fils, ou leur fille, vive loin d’eux. De tels parents aimants méritent des louanges pour les sacrifices qu’ils font. Jéhovah les récompensera.
      Une prière qui déborde de joie
      Comme Hanna est heureuse, elle que la stérilité affectait tant autrefois ! Les Écritures ne contiennent que peu de prières faites par des femmes. Mais, en ce qui concerne Hanna, elles en rapportent deux. La première expose ses sentiments alors qu’elle est humiliée et affligée. La seconde exprime son exultation et son action de grâces ; elle commence par ces mots : “ Oui, mon cœur exulte en Jéhovah. ” Hanna se réjouit ensuite que ‘ même la stérile ait mis au monde ’. Et elle loue Jéhovah, celui “ qui élève [...], qui relève le petit de la poussière ”. Vraiment, il est celui qui “ de la fosse aux cendres [...] fait remonter le pauvre ”. — 1 Samuel 2:1-10.
      Cet épisode de la vie de Hanna, dont le récit a été inspiré par Dieu, montre que les imperfections, voire la malveillance, des autres peuvent nous blesser. Toutefois, nous ne devons pas permettre à ce genre d’épreuves de nous priver de notre joie de servir Dieu. Jéhovah est, par excellence, Celui qui entend la prière, qui répond aux appels à l’aide de ses fidèles et qui les délivre de l’affliction. Il leur accorde une paix profonde et de nombreuses autres bénédictions. — Psaume 22:23-26 ; 34:6-8 ; 65:2.

      · 0 replies
    • Eric Ouellet

      1 Samuel 2 : 1-10
      Hannah pria Dieu en ces mots:
      Mon cœur se réjouit au sujet de Jéhovah
      ma force grandit grâce à Jéhovah.
      Ma bouche s’ouvre toute grande contre mes ennemis,
      car je me réjouis de tes actes sauveurs.
      Il n’y a personne qui soit saint comme Jéhovah,
      il n’y a personne qui soit comme toi,
      il n’y a pas de rocher comme notre Dieu.
      Arrêtez de parler avec orgueil ;
      que rien d’arrogant ne sorte de votre bouche,
      car Jéhovah est un Dieu qui sait tout
      et il juge les actions avec justice.
      Les arcs des hommes forts sont brisés,
      mais les hommes faibles reçoivent de la force
      Ceux qui mangeaient bien doivent trouver du travail pour avoir du pain,
      mais les affamés ne souffrent plus de la faim.
      La femme stérile a donné naissance à sept fils,
      mais celle qui avait beaucoup de fils est devenue stérile.
      Jéhovah tue et il garde en vie,
      il fait descendre dans la Tombe et il en fait remonter.
      Jéhovah fait devenir pauvre et il fait devenir riche,
      il abaisse et il élève.
      Il relève le petit de la poussière
      et fait remonter le pauvre du tas de cendres
      pour les faire asseoir avec les princes
      et leur offrir une place d’honneur.
      À Jéhovah appartiennent les fondations de la terre ;
      sur elles, il pose le monde
      Il veille sur les pas de ses fidèles,
      mais les méchants seront tués dans l’obscurité,
      car ce n’est pas par la force que l’homme triomphe. 
      Jéhovah anéantira ceux qui combattent contre lui ;
      pour exprimer sa colère, il fera gronder le tonnerre dans le ciel.
      Jéhovah jugera jusqu’aux extrémités de la terre,
      il donnera du pouvoir à son roi et il fera grandir la force de son oint.
       
       
       


      · 1 reply
    • anniemsbelle@gmail.com  »  Queen Esther

      Do you have the print out for the regional convention 
      · 1 reply
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