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Public Watchtower No 2 2020

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I'd like to ask @JW Insider 's view on the 'public edition', No 2 2020 Watchtower of 'What Is God's Kingdom' 

Page 8 bottom left corner. mentions the 'so called' Signs of the times' Luke 21 v 10 & 11. But fails to mention the previous verse that say :- Verse 9.

"Furthermore, when you hear of wars and disturbances, do not be terrified. For these things must take place first, but the end will not occur immediately.”

And Matthew 24 v 8 says,  All these things are a beginning of pangs of distress. 

So are the GB / Writing dept' still playing an old record here ?  

And I notice on page 10 and 11 that the GB are holding on tightly to their doctrine of 1914.  Is this a good thing ? 

It is this type of thing that i mention when i say about taking the GB's message to the world, not God's. 

Any opinions on this please but would like JWI's opinion as I think he has made his feelings known on these things before.  

( I'm being told about my 'tags' not being done properly so I haven't added any )

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1 hour ago, 4Jah2me said:

So are the GB / Writing dept' still playing an old record here ?  

Yes. It's the same old record. What the WT represents here is still a possible interpretation, as I've often said. But it contradicts the most likely interpretation of several other Bible verses, and it uses unlikely definitions and interpretations of the original Greek terms.

You already mentioned one of those potential contradictions, where Jesus couches all these "signs" in language about not being misled because even if you are seeing these things, the end is not yet. Of course, at some point in history, it may not be these particular signs, but there will certainly come a time when people will just simply "become faint out of fear, not know the way out." But we know that this is the time of the actual "end" or "synteleia" (the full [destructive] end of all things together.) But the rest of the chapter in Matthew 24, Mark 13, and Luke 17 & 21 let us know that people will still be milling, farming, buying, selling, and getting married right up until this point in time. Therefore it comes as a surprise, as if without warning.

It should be of concern to more Witnesses, I think, that 1914 is sometimes defended as follows: Chronology, archaeology, and history say that Jerusalem was destroyed in 587 BCE. But if we count forward 2,520 years from 587 we reach 1934 and we all know that nothing happened in that year. (Furuli uses this argument in his new book.) Therefore we look to 607 as the destruction of Jerusalem. He can do what he wants with shifting the evidence around to support the 607 date. What is of interest is the defense, 'it can't be 1934 because nothing happened then.'

If nothing happened in 1934, then why do we speak of a time starting in 1914 when critical times hard to deal with will go from bad to worse? If it was bad in 1914, then why wasn't it so much worse in 1934? Why has the persecution of Jehovah's Witnesses been reduced to relatively nothing in 2020, if Satan's anger is based on knowing he has a short period of time? Does Satan no longer have a short period of time? If it all had to happen in 1914, then where were the earthquakes? Why are the most notable ones a decade prior to 1914, and decades after?

The reason is actually pretty clear. The Bible predicted that bad things would be happening in places, as always, but it would still be generally during a relatively peaceful time when people would be likely to take notice of peaceful and secure conditions around them. The Bible said that people, just as they were already doing in Peter's day, would be wondering if this promised spectacular judgment visitation (parousia) was really going to come upon them, precisely because conditions would be a lot like before the Flood when people kept living their life normally. That's what would make the parousia come upon them suddenly, like a thief in the night (and spectacularly, like lightning).

It should also be curious why Jesus spent time on the topic of an invisible visitation (parousia). He promised that the parousia would not be invisible. There is always a tendency of people to want to be seen as prophets or having special insight and discernment. So they will be saying that even though Jesus is not visible in front of you, that he actually has returned, but he's over here or over there, or in some hidden room somewhere. This idea is that someone would claim special insight or knowledge about Jesus parousia that you don't yet have. Jesus indicated that this idea of an invisible parousia is nonsense. After saying not to fall for those persons who say he's here or there, but invisible to you, Jesus said that the parousia would be like lightning that flashes from one horizon to the other. Even the very word "parousia" when used in Greek with reference to a visiting ruler, was not just about the "visititation" which would be enough, but also about the visible spectacle and the parade and the entourage and the trumpeted fanfare. No one has this special insight or discernment of the parousia to claim to others, because everyone can see such a great lightning flash at the same time.

So, you asked for my opinion, and that's it. But what I think is "false" information about it is not specifically the GB's opinion. They inherited it from old "Bible Student" tradition just like all JWs inherited it. Most JWs merely wait on the GB before thinking about changing their opinion on things because it makes for peace and order and unity in the congregation. Such doctrines are not the defining characteristic of JWs.

Also, as far as teaching the GB's teaching on this, the primary purpose of the teaching is to create urgency. There is nothing wrong with urgency. The Bible promotes it, too. Jesus may have begun the "Messianic" kingship in 33 CE, and that was in the distant past. 1914 is in the distant past, too. So it's not a disaster in terms of its effect on our lives. The "GB" teaching is that Jesus is invisibly present. This is not a disaster either, for the same reason: Jesus said he would be invisibly present starting in 33 CE. ("Wherever two or three are gathered in Jesus' name. there he would be (invisibly present) in their midst." Also, as soon as Jesus was resurrected he said: "Look I am with you [invisibly present] all the days until the "synteleia" (the full completion/full conclusion) of the system of things."

The basic message is that Jesus has begun his kingship, he is invisibly present, and he will shortly judge the entire world. This is not so far off, except in its chronology. And chronology shouldn't matter.  It did matter for as long as the WT was teaching that someone born before 1914 who was old enough to see the war in 1914 would not die out before the Judgment/end. This created a chronology error, a false teaching. It's been taken care of now that all those people died already.

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