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  1. 5 points
    Here is the Weekly Material for August 19-25 and August 26–September 1, 2019. TB Watchtower August 19-25, 2019.pdf Watchtower August 19-25, 2019.doc MEETING WORKBOOK week of August 19-25 , 2019 text only.pdf MEETING WORKBOOK week of August 19-25 , 2019.doc MEETING WORKBOOK week of August 19-25 , 2019.pdf MEETING WORKBOOK week of August 19-25 , 2019 text only.doc CBS August 19-25, 2019.pdf CBS August 19-25, 2019.doc Additional Highlights -August 19-25, 2019.doc Additional Highlights -August 19-25, 2019.pdf Additional Highlights -December 31, 2018–January 6, 2019.doc Additional Highlights -August 26–September 1, 2019.pdf CBS August 26–September 1, 2019.pdf CBS August 26–September 1, 2019.doc MEETING WORKBOOK week of August 26–September 1 , 2019.doc MEETING WORKBOOK week of August 26–September 1 , 2019 text only.pdf MEETING WORKBOOK week of August 26–September 1 , 2019 text only.doc MEETING WORKBOOK week of August 26–September 1 , 2019.pdf Watchtower August 26, 2019–September 1, 2019.doc Watchtower August 26, 2019–September 1, 2019.pdf
  2. 5 points
    Any data that an organization keeps with respect to a policy or prior practice is always considered fair game in a lawsuit, because these lawsuits seek to find out whether the prior practice matched the stated "public policy." The claim, if one goes after an organization for damages, is that the practice has been different from the policy. For example, a particular city or jurisdiction claims that their policy is to always change the lead (Pb) pipes in all areas where the levels of lead reach a certain threshold, and they have kept data on all lead level complaints, and data on every area where they have changed pipes (or fought against changing the pipes). If the city is proud of their record, and wants to prove that their stated policy was honest, they would be happy to have this record made available to the courts. And even if the courts say that they only need it to determine the probability of organizational wrongdoing in one particular case, there is a chance that this document/database will be leaked, or that the knowledge of such a document/database will cause it to be requested for multiple future cases, for as long as it is still viable to sue the water district or organization. If the water district has done a commendable job, they might even be happy that the document/database gets leaked. They might even leak it themselves. Of course, no organization is perfect, and there will always be items in such a database that make organizations concerned, or even ashamed. The fact that over a thousand cases of abuse in the Australian Branch were NEVER reported to authorities, and that not even one was reported, produced powerful circumstantial evidence that there may have been pressure from somewhere to keep such crimes unreported. It may have shown that almost any excuse will be grasped at to keep such crimes unreported, even in areas where reporting is not only ethical, but mandatory. The Australian database was therefore very important to show a pattern, in the event that a new case would claim that such a pattern actually existed. The other concern, of course, is that, if the database cannot be redacted, that some well-known names of brothers at the highest levels of responsibility in the organization could be revealed, bringing shame on the organization, and the families of those brothers. The Australian database had two names, I'm told, that went to the very top of the Branch in Australia (still living), and one name that went to the very top of the US Branch (a person no longer alive who was moved around after accusations surfaced). If this is true, it would give a whole new dimension to why it is suspected that the US Branch will never release the US database.
  3. 5 points
    This is pretty sad. I think a lot of it had to do with the more Anglocentric makeup of the GB in past years. The motive of giving the appearance of unity is not a bad one. Our styles of dress reflect our unity of worship. It's nice to be able to drive through a neighborhood or even visit another city and recognize Witnesses from quite a distance away. But now, there is more concern for writing counsel that advises an entire world of customs. There is a need to generalize the counsel since every country gets the same counsel. A lot of people think that Rutherford started the no-beard policy as a control measure to make sure that the Russellite cult was weeded out from among the Bible Students. My great grandfather was among the Chicago Bible Students who had many beard-growers because they thought so highly of Russell, who wore a beard. He was well-known in Russell's circle of associates, but would not have "advanced" under Rutherford if he did not cut his beard.
  4. 5 points
    Of course, there was that "God-damned" snake in the grass back in Eden. It was cursed to crawl on the ground and lick the dust with its [forked] tongue. Then there were those pigs that allowed themselves to be possessed by demons, and were driven to commit suicide. Certain animals might have listened to communication from God to be able to receive a name from Adam. The same could be said for the animals that listened to communication from God to get on Noah's ark. Or for ravens to find Elijah to bring him food. Or, perhaps even a big fish who nearly snacked on Jonah. And there's that special relationship between Jehovah and Leviathan and Behemoth. God gives animals "meat in due season" (food at the proper time): (Psalm 104:27) . . .All of them wait for you To give them their food in its season. And a donkey evidently saved a man's life by ascertaining an invisible angel. On a serious note, I think most people agree that many persons have an unbalanced view of pets. But it's also easy to get unbalanced in the direction of disdaining pets and animals. Remember that Jehovah himself rejoices at his works which obviously includes his many interactions with animals according to the context of Psalm 104. (Psalm 104:28-31) . . .What you give them, they gather. When you open your hand, they are satisfied with good things. 29 When you hide your face, they are disturbed. If you take away their spirit, they die and return to the dust. 30 If you send out your spirit, they are created, And you renew the surface of the ground. 31 The glory of Jehovah will last forever. Jehovah will rejoice in his works.
  5. 4 points
    This forum currently contains a recent topic where the subject of the 1918 imprisonment and 1919 release of Rutherford and his associates has come up. There is a lot of misinformation under that topic. I'm no expert on the subject, but it's still obvious that even some who present themselves as experts can be misinformed. There is plenty of documentation and verifiable information out there on the topic, and while there's no real shame in being misinformed, we should be careful not to present ourselves as experts. When a person presents themselves as an expert, their misinformation becomes disinformation. We should strive for honesty. And it's not that going back to this history is necessarily all that important, but our publications have made it part of fulfilled Bible prophecy, and therefore any mishandling of information about it becomes all the more serious. Also, sometimes when such historical topics are brought up some Witnesses are quick to complain that there is no reason to go back and rehash that old material. Note however, that it is our recent books and Watchtower magazines that regularly bring up such material for review. The "God's Kingdom" book discusses it. Even one of the most recent Watchtowers brings it up again (October 2019 Watchtower): *** w19 October p. 3 1919—One Hundred Years Ago *** While the eight brothers were imprisoned, faithful Bible Students circulated a petition calling for their release. These brave brothers and sisters gathered more than 700,000 signatures. On Wednesday, March 26, 1919, before the petition was submitted, Brother Rutherford and the other responsible brothers were released. In a speech to those who welcomed him home, Brother Rutherford said: “I am convinced that this experience we have all gone through is merely to prepare us for more strenuous times. . . . Your fight has not been to get your brethren out of prison. That was merely a side issue. . . . The fight you have been making has been for the purpose of witnessing for the Truth, and those who have done it have received a wonderful blessing.” The circumstances surrounding the trial of our brothers may give indication of Jehovah’s direction. On May 14, 1919, the appeals court ruled: “The defendants in this case did not have the . . . impartial trial to which they were entitled, and for that reason the judgment is reversed.” The brothers had been convicted of serious crimes, and these judgments would have remained on their records if they had only been pardoned or if their sentences had merely been commuted. No further charges were laid. As a result, Judge Rutherford retained his legal qualifications to defend Jehovah’s people before the Supreme Court of the United States, something he did many times after his release. I won't personally get back to this topic for up to a day or so, but welcome anyone with information to present what they know about it, or have heard about it. We can start with our own publications and Wikipedia, of course. But anything that seems like valuable information or interesting questions could be presented for evaluation by all who are serious about such history.
  6. 4 points
    Here is the Weekly material for the next 2 weeks ---- weeks of August 5-11 and August 12-18, 2019. TB CBS August 5-11, 2019.pdf MEETING WORKBOOK week of August 5-11 , 2019 text only.doc MEETING WORKBOOK week of August 5-11 , 2019 text only.pdf MEETING WORKBOOK week of August 5-11 , 2019.doc MEETING WORKBOOK week of August 5-11 , 2019.pdf Watchtower August 5-11, 2019.doc Watchtower August 5-11, 2019.pdf Additional Highlights - August 5-11, 2019.doc Additional Highlights - August 5-11, 2019.pdf CBS August 5-11, 2019.doc CBS August 12-18, 2019.pdf CBS August 12-18, 2019.doc Additional Highlights -August 12-18, 2019.pdf Additional Highlights -August 12-18, 2019.doc Watchtower August 12-18, 2019.pdf Watchtower August 12-18, 2019.doc MEETING WORKBOOK week of August 12-18 , 2019.pdf MEETING WORKBOOK week of August 12-18 , 2019.doc MEETING WORKBOOK week of August 12-18 , 2019 text only.pdf MEETING WORKBOOK week of August 12-18 , 2019 text only.doc
  7. 4 points
    I would be interested to know how this application can be seen as sound judgement when regular people out in the world shun family members for drug addiction, alcoholism, homosexuality, etc. They, don't accept phone calls, emails, mail, messages relayed by others, secondhand notifications, etc. What makes a Watchtower lawyer unique under the same standard that worldly people use to set people straight. How many drug addicted people live with you? How many extreme alcoholics. In LA, there's a place called skid row where all the abandoned drug addicts and alcoholics live. There are many generous people that go help, but how many do you think will welcome such a person in their home. People need to start thinking before they write if you want this forum to be seen as academic. Now some will argue about fornication and adultery. How can agape love influence those that are doing spiritual harm to themselves and those they have encouraged?
  8. 4 points
    From John Redwood... A preview of upcoming news: Jehovah's Witnesses are appealing to the Supreme Court of the United States, but this time it has nothing to do with preaching or saluting the flag. It's all about child abuse. Specifically, the protection (or cover-up) of information, documents, and testimony of persons involved in cases of child abuse. I will be covering this story in the coming weeks and months, but I thought I would share some of this news and try to distill it down as simply as I can. I'd like to point out first that Watchtower has appealed to the Supreme Court in connection with their loss of yet another California child abuse case. The chance that Watchtower's appeal being will be heard by the Supreme Court is slim, but anything is possible. What brought this about? There are many ongoing civil child abuse cases in California. One such case is J.W. versus Watchtower. J.W. happens to be the initials for the victim of former JW elder Gilbert Simental, who went on a spree of molestation which touched the lives of numerous victims. As with other cases, the plaintiff demanded that Watchtower turn over to the court a database of child abuse cases known to be maintained by Watchtower of New York. In this particular case, because Watchtower failed to turn over the documents in a timely manner, attorneys asked for a default judgment of just over 4 million dollars. The court agreed with the plaintiff and entered a default judgment in that amount. Watchtower was required to post a bond of more than 6 million dollars while their appeal was pending. Watchtower lost their appeal, and the decision of the court was upheld. This decision is final- with one exception. Watchtower has decided to appeal to the United States Supreme court on the basis that their judicial hearings related to child abuse matters are "confidential intra-faith communications" and that they do not, and should not, reveal those communications or documents to anyone, including civil courts. I'd like to make it very clear what Watchtower is doing here. They are fighting for their right NOT to allow civil authorities to dictate what is confidential, and what is not confidential. All of this is in relation to their claim that elders do not have the right or duty to report child abuse to the authorities. Watchtower overtly lies to their members by claiming that they obey secular laws, except when they conflict with God's laws. Yet they break the law every single time by advising elders NOT to report child abuse to the authorities. It does NOT matter whether child abuse occurs in a mandatory reporting state- elders STILL do not report to the police because Watchtower has told them that ALL of their communications are protected by clergy-penitent privilege. This is false- and it is exactly why they are losing tens of millions of dollars in child abuse civil cases. Watchtower advises elders to break the law. And now they want the Supreme Court of the United States to agree with them. The claim that the state of California has unfairly targeted Jehovah's Witnesses and "intruded upon matters of church governance." Why??? How does compliance with mandatory child abuse reporting laws conflict with God's laws? It doesn't. This is a fabrication of Watchtower attorneys working for the Governing Body, and it's become quite clear that they feel that compliance with these civil laws will spell disaster for their religion. And they might be right. If Jehovah's Witnesses did the right thing and complied with the law, they would lose the tight grip of control over their elder bodies in ways which frighten the hell out of them. There is a whole lot more to this story as well as the underlying cases involved, but I wanted to let you know what's going on. Attorneys for J.W. (the abuse victim) will be filing an opposition to Watchtower's appeal in August, and we should have a decision from the Supreme Court by October on whether they will accept Jehovah's Witnesses appeal for review. Stay tuned!!
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  9. 4 points
    To make a very long story very short, almost to the point of abbreviation .... and trying to stay on topic .... In the past 57 years, I have been in the "little back room, Room 101", about 17 times, being "counseled" by Elders that did not like "something" about me ... that I worked a lot of overtime, that I rode a Honda 350 motorcycle to the Kingdom Hall, that I "refused" to provide a telephone for my wife, ad nauseum ... and I REALLY HATE BULLIES! ... but I digress ... and about 8 or so of those times it was to get me to cut off my beard. One time it was because of my mustache. During the 60's it was because my hair came down just perceptively below the collar. In one congregation in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, I had no problem with the beard ... and even got a recommendation letter to go work at the Bethel Branch Office construction in Peru ... and in all others, I was castigated, and even forbidden to go out in Service until I shaved off my beard. After eight discussions, and no valid scriptural reasoning, all joy in doing what I was doing was destroyed ... but it bothered me A LOT that stuff like this was being inflicted on the global Brotherhood, in almost EVERY congregation I had ever attended. If they could do it to me... they WERE doing it to other Brothers ... and things similar to this. Based on all available real evidence, it seemed to me that in order to be a watchtower approved Elder you had to be qualified as follows: 1.) clueless 2.) petty 3.) irrational 4.be a "Company Man", through and through. 5.) and have no pangs of conscience whatsoever for being a bully. To be fair, I have also run across Engineers and Doctors that shared these traits, but they did not operate in an environment that ENCOURAGED this behavior. The other day I mentioned in a comment that I envied Anna, and she replied that she knew that ... because she still seems to have the joy in the Truth that has been systematically beaten out of me. I miss the man I used to be. A lot! I did have a choice, however ... either "get with the program", or keep my self respect. It has gotten better over the years, but only marginally, but I have endured things far, far worse that these things I have mentioned ... and I will endure things like this also. When my Dad died, about ten years ago, he asked me to shave off my beard ... he also never liked it .... and I have been clean shaven since then. I loved my Dad. I HATE BULLIES! I am 72 now, and in marginal health .... and can see the end of the "conveyor belt" on which I stand, and it bothers me. I am too old and fragile to carry on my back bags of heavy stones for someone else's entertainment.
  10. 3 points
    salomon

    SEEING IS BELIEVING

    SEEING IS BELIEVING Widespread expression, but this kind of thinking is actually quite short-sighted. Why is that? There are so many things that we cannot see and yet our lives revolve around them. For instance, we don’t see the air but it fills our lungs and it caresses our skin. We don’t see odors, but our nose picks them up. Nor we see sound waves, but our ears are sensitive to them. There’s a pretty good chance you have never seen your brain, and yet you are using it right now to parse this illustration! We don’t see God nor faith, but if our heart is sincere it will detect Him, befriend Him, and love Him.
  11. 3 points
    Juror Dan Stinnett, in his first interview about the case, explained how he and eight other Sanders County jurors found the Jehovah’s Witnesses governing organizations negligent and “guilty of malice” in the child sexual abuse of Alexis Nunez, awarding her $35 million. “I believe they were trying to cover up, yes. I have no doubt about that,” Stinnett said. When asked if he was trying to send a message with his jury vote, Stinnett responded, “Why, absolutely. We as jurors and as society really don’t condone … any of this.” The Nunez case is one of dozens tallied by the Hearst Television National Investigative Unit as part of a yearlong investigation that uncovered new allegations of child sexual abuse and decadeslong cover-ups inside the Jehovah’s Witnesses religious organization in the United States. The allegations span congregations, states and generations.
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  12. 3 points
  13. 3 points
    Baruq JW

    Open letter to Daro Weilburg

    Open letter to Daro Weilburg Dear Daro, I must ask you first of all to forgive my boldness, since, although almost fifteen years younger than you, I have to reproach you. Do not think I mean to disrespect. But having as a predecessor Elihu, who, in spite of his youth, did not refrain from rebuking the venerable Job I believe that I can in good conscience follow the example of this wise figure of antiquity. I watched some of your videos on the internet. I answer here because you have blocked all comments on your page, so it is impossible to reach you. I have no doubt that you are a sincere person, but beware! in the darkest days of modern history, sincere men have exterminated hundreds of thousands of others. Sincerity does not imply being right or excusable for any of our actions or statements. With this preamble in mind, I hope you will understand that I may have found two of your videos that you have posted online shocking, videos in which you discuss the topic of child abuse within the Jehovah's Witnesses Organisation, taking as a basis the highly publicised case of Candace Conti. You find it unlikely that a woman could have waited years before revealing the aggression she was the victim of and you call her a liar. But what do you know about the feelings of a girl-child who has complete confidence in adults and who can not imagine that one of them can hurt her, especially if he is a relative, a close family member, a brother of the congregation, or even an elder? These young girls probably had no idea what was happening to them. Some were threatened or blackmailed if they said anything. That's the way things work with paedophiles. Within the Catholic Church, as well as within the Jehovah's Witnesses organisation, or within all institutions where adults are in contact with children. You will notice that the Watchtower of May 2019, although it does not provide any solutions to the victims, does not say anything else: It is all too easy for devious abusers to deceive children. Abusers teach children dangerous lies, such as the idea that the child is to blame, that the abuse must be kept secret, that no one will listen or care if the child reports the abuse, or that sexual acts between an adult and a child are actually normal expressions of sincere love. Such lies can distort a child’s thinking ability and perception of truth for many years. Such a child may grow up thinking of herself or himself as damaged, defiled, and unworthy of love or comfort. And you would you like to condemn these innocent lives? You would like to deny them the right to justice, because many years have passed? You support the two witnesses rule imposed by the Governing Body, when it is the very nature of the paedophiles to act in secret? You are talking about forensics when it is already difficult for a woman to gain recognition of a rape she just suffered as an adult? How can this be inflicted on a child? How cruel you are! From what you're saying, it seems that Candace Conti woke up one fine day and that she went on the internet, found a picture of a man she did not even know and decided to accuse him, all this for personal gain. Does this seem plausible to you? For me, it seems difficult. Given that you have experienced it, you can understand the feelings of a person facing a court and his lot of judges, prosecutors, lawyers, usually men, often incredulous, perplexed or skeptical, sometimes hostile. In your case, it was your own mistakes that led you in the dock. But you can not put yourself in the shoes of a woman who humbles herself by confessing that she has been raped while feeling the shame for what she suffered, constantly repeating, again and again, the same story. One would need to have a surprising strength of character to build such a lie. I can believe that some have done it, perfidy is not the prerogative of either sex, but here we are speaking of thousands of cases. Thousands of liars? You claimed: That doesn’t happen in any Kingdom Hall. Anywhere in the world. There is no way that an elder or a parent of a child would allow a man to take a small young child out in the ministry alone. That’s a lie. It’s not gonna happen. Not in any Kingdom Hall, 120,000 in the entire world, it’s not gonna happen. It’s a lie. (“Is Candace Conti lying about being molested by A JW elder at 9?” on Youtube) Dear Daro, please let me tell you that you are absolutely wrong, because here is the reality: in more than fifty years, I attended about a dozen congregations in three different lands. I can therefore confirm that leaving a child alone with an adult is a common thing in all congregations! After all, are we not supposed to live in a spiritual paradise in which everyone is beautiful and kind? Who can hurt us? Because, if that's the case, then where is the paradise? For some, it would rather be hell. Perhaps things have changed recently, as the Governing Body has revised its policy to protect themselves from the ever-increasing claims for having done nothing to protect the weakest among its flock, preferring to put responsibility on the parents and the elders if something should happen to a child in the congregation. But the harm that has been done in the past cannot be changed. Finally, the words you use about Barbara Anderson are not worthy of someone who calls himself a disciple and a member of the self-proclaimed only true religion gathering the people of God (you will notice that I avoided using the term “Christian”, the latter being able to qualify only the one who follows Christ and not an organisation). This woman has been the voice of thousands of silent victims who have found, thanks to her, the courage to emerge from their mess. So out of respect for a person who has given years of her life to this fight and paid a heavy price, I think you should measure your words. Dear Daro, I know you will have a hard time accepting my comments, but it is a matter between God and you. As for me, I think I have done my duty. With Christian love, Baruq
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  14. 3 points
    The PERFECT example of this is this Weekend's Watchtower Study, paragraphs 15 and 16 , on pages 6 and 7 of the June, 2019 Issue. The question for those two paragraphs is advice for perhaps 9 MILLION JWs and students is: 15-16. What do you learn from the experience of one sister? It's all about "plausible deniability" I was going to answer that experiences are as varied as there are people, but I had already answered paragraph 7 .... and this sister sounds like a mental anxiety filled emotional wreck (you will have to read the paragraphs ... I suggest you sit down and put on a seat belt before you start ...), and that at Bethel there is a small army of Lawyers with advanced degrees, Dentists and Doctors with advanced degrees, and the whole place was built by Architects, Civil Engineers, Mechanical Engineers, Electrical Engineers, Computer Engineers, ALL with degrees and licensed by the State of New York. People that normally make from $85 to $115 an hour ... as EMPLOYEES! But the only thing you and I need to know is the phrase " .... you want fries with that?'", and hope your parents live to be 95 years old so you can live in their basement and possibly inherit their house .... if they do not will it to the Society, and have you thrown out when they sell it.
  15. 3 points
    Thanks for the insight. I never thought of it that way. The Baptism is an outward symbol of a dedication ALREADY MADE IN IT'S TOTALITY. Whatever you dedicated to Jehovah God is between you and God, alone ... and what the GB has done is try an "control the narrative", and add to that. I wonder what would happen if after Baptism at an Assembly, where you stood up with many baptismal candidates that said "YES", and you did not affirm the questions asked you. I doubt they examine the videos to make sure you did, or have someone watch to see if you did, taking notes. Then, after perhaps several years of faithful life, casually mention that your immersion was as public as you needed, and that you never said "Yes" like all the others did. What you had resolved in your heart to do was sufficient, and nothing needed to be added. It's obvious that you were not there to soap up and bathe. Or ... let's say you were on a camping trip beside a lake, and you turned to your Bible Teacher and said "What's to prevent me from being baptized ..." quoting the Ethiopian Eunuch, and you both went down to the lake, and your teacher baptized you. As far as I know, it only takes ONE other person present to be a public expression of your dedication, and it would in actual fact be quite valid. That brings up the next consideration ..... When you got back to your home congregations, relating the events of the camping trip, how much crap would you have to put up with from the Elders ... or would it be none at all?
  16. 3 points
    Perhaps. Then you can agree it’s a matter of personal decision how anyone is allowed to conduct themselves, especially when it comes to obeying God. I was recently advised, my D’fd brother was in the hospital and it was life threatening. I had no problem having to go down the hospital to support my brother in his time of need. Even though, he has personally stayed away from the family. His choice! When I got there, I greeted him with tender loving care. We spoke of things that are going around the world, and how he thought God’s day is vastly approaching. I advised him to return to his roots and accept the evil that had befallen him after the death of his dear wife. He shrugged his shoulders and that was the end of that conversation. We continued to speak about other things. He didn’t entice me with worldly views or encourage me to defy God in any way. Had he done so, I would have treated my visit as a bad association. Bad company. I would have wished him a fast recovery, and I would have left. As a person of conscience that he is, he would have understood, as he has done in many occasions. It’s those that wish to lay claim to fame by publicly voicing themselves in public that get the attention. Attention for the wrong reason, since no one gets D’fd for no reason. There is also the cultural aspect of people not willing to speak to someone. In Mexico, Homosexuality is a grave sin. Therefore, a Catholic parent with a gay child will reject that child because of culture within that religion. Because, the Catholic faith is now accepting of homosexuality. However, faith won't change the minds of those that hold on to old values. That is actually the way the Watchtower and scripture defines “stay away from bad influence”. If such influence is transmitted by mail, TEXT, messages, in person, etc. guess what, don’t allow it in your life as a true Christian. Why? For the fear of not being influenced by that association. In simple words, Jesus would say, why give the devil a chance to corrupt your good Christian life. This can also be defined from Christian member to member. I will agree that the majority of present day witnesses don’t understand the concept of bad association that is literally forced by an ex-witness view of shunning. Remember, that word was made by opposers that they themselves falsely claim the Watchtower is about.
  17. 3 points
    It is revealing to me that those who taunt us endlessly over just how “inspired” are the ones at the helm today seem to take for granted that there should be ones who are that way. It gets even more crazy when words such as “infallible” are thrown in. “Perfect” is even worse. “Look at what Brother Jackson said,” they gloat. “Guess he’s not so infallible after all, is he?” they say. They take for granted that for the Christian life to have validity in modern times, there should be ones who ARE infallible, who can and SHOULD spoon-feed members, so there is a lessened need for faith, and hopefully (from their point of view) none at all. These ones wouldn’t have lasted two minutes in the first century, when the ones taking the lead were manifestly not that way. A local speaker with a dramatic flair enacted a fictional encounter from back then with an irate householder, a forerunner of today’s “apostates.” “What! You’re going to tell me about love?” he tells the visiting brother. “Look, I was there at that meeting of Paul and Barnabas after John took a leave of absence! You see those two kids there? [motioning to his young children playing on the floor] They do not fight as I saw those two grown men of yours fight! Why don’t you learn love yourself before you come here to lecture me about it!” For that reason, I shy away from such loaded words as “infallible.” Maybe the insistence on infallibility is a holdover from the Catholic Church, which for centuries insisted that the Pope was that way. “Inspired” will also blow up in your face, because you end up doing backflips in translating just what the word should effectively mean now—or even then, when the “leading men” fought like kids. (I even put the word “apostates” in quotes, increasingly, because it comes in many varieties and it means different things to different people.) It is enough to say that the written record, which includes the dealings and interactions of imperfect ones at the first-century helm, is deemed “inspired.” “All Scripture is inspired of God and beneficial for teaching, for reproving, for setting things straight, for disciplining in righteousness, so that the man of God may be fully competent, completely equipped for every good work.” This is so even though it includes the account of Peter’s astounding cowardess (given his leadership role at the time) of changing his association once the Jewish-based brothers came on the scene—before they did, he mixed freely with the Gentile-based Christians; after they did, he “withdrew” from them. It is still “inspired.” It is enough for us to go on. It is enough to make us “fully competent” and “completely equipped for every good work.” Even though it includes the blunderings of the “uneducated and ordinary” ones that were the leaders back then—and the leaders today hold to that pattern—that is still the case. It is not at all what Srecko or John thinks it should be—a true “anointed” to wipe away every tear and smooth the path, (sorry, Witness) removing all pebbles so that the people of God can sail along blithely without really having to develop faith.
  18. 3 points
    On the contrary, the org should value the people who can respectfully discuss and critically examine doctrine like what is done here...Berean-like ones that test out the expressions they hear against the Bible. Instead, direction is not up for debate and people are told to even submit to “illogical” direction from the organization. So what the org will become is a bunch of yes-men who don’t know how to think for themselves.
  19. 3 points
    I had the impression that this was Newton's whole point. It was not that he was serious about actually predicting a date for the end of the world. I think it was to show contemporaries that the same "data" that "prophecy hounds" always made use of in order to prove something will happen within their own generation, could just as easily be used to point to something hundreds of years in the future.
  20. 3 points
    When i was arrested by Civil Police and handed to Military Police and after they transported me to place where i have to serve army, they treated me as Soldier even i was in civil clothes. Later i understand that all young people who passed age of old (17) when they went to medical examination /recruitment / and been put in evidence for serving in army, were under the law and considered as future soldier, especially in moment when you are literally, physically inside Military Camp.
  21. 3 points
    Yes. In fact WHY they have to call Legal Department for advice on - to call or not to call - if Bible PRINCIPLES and GUIDANCE of holy spirit are powers SUFFICIENT for Elders when making decisions? :))
  22. 3 points
    You have deflected to the Boy Scouts. In your mind, you are desperately trying to preserve a corrupt leadership/organization that claims to represent the Almighty God. Is it not more important to preserve our relationship with God, rather than with men who fail deliberately and repeatedly, to protect their "sheep"? I am more "vested" in the prophetic outcome of this organization, of which this matter only contributes to. When it is in your power, don’t withhold good from the one it belongs to. 28 Don’t say to your neighbor, “Go away! Come back later. I’ll give it tomorrow”—when it is there with you. 29 Don’t plan any harm against your neighbor, for he trusts you and lives near you. 30 Don’t accuse anyone without cause, when he has done you no harm. 31 Don’t envy a violent man or choose any of his ways; 32 for the devious are detestable to the Lord, but He is a friend to the upright. 33 The Lord’s curse is on the household of the wicked, but He blesses the home of the righteous; 34 He mocks those who mock, but gives grace to the humble. 35 The wise will inherit honor, but He holds up fools to dishonor. Prov 3:27-35
  23. 3 points
    Witness: I am deeply ashamed for the reputation of Jehovah, and the Brotherhood that the Governing Body has Lawyers that will spare no effort, time, and money to PERVERT Justice. I wish you were lying or agenda driven, but I know from independent research everything you said here is true .... and that there is more, besides that. Thanks for the vigilance.
  24. 3 points
    The Brothers in Mexico, specifically, the Sierra Madre Mountains had the same problem with badges we have ... people expected to see them all the time. We don't need no stinking badges!.mp4
  25. 3 points
    @Jack Ryan said:How do you feel about being told that you MUST wear your badge even when out to dinner at night with your family after a convention? Never happened yet. But if it did, I would take it off.
  26. 3 points
    Poor old @TrueTomHarley has to try to group people together. Even though he adds 'as individuals', he still starts with a group of people all of one type. I don't know Srecko's personal information and I would not ask him, but as for me, I have a wife and a son that live 'at home' with me. They are enough company for me thanks. I do not need to surround myself at home or online with a group of people. I've just bought myself a new MP3 player with the biggest 'cans' (headphones) I could get, and I go walking along the riverside and then along the seafront all on my own. I walk past people as if they are just obstructions, I dodge round them all. People here in the UK are also fat and they get in the way, but I squeeze my slim body past them all. As for the idea that "Witnesses as a people have a much greater diversity of friends as regards race, social-economic, nationality, & educational letters, then do non-Witnesses." That is probably wishful thinking. Witnesses do not seem to actually have any friends, just brothers and sisters. A friend is someone that can be relied upon for support and help, no matter what the circumstances. Not so with the bro's and sis, who desert people at the slightest whim. The fact that the JW Org is earthwide does not make all those people your friends. That's a bit like having a million friends on Facebook, they are not real friends. Poor Tom is still living in that dream world of his, and he won't back down, which is funny as he condemned me for not backing down on things. If you treat things as typical patterns it is because you don't want to 'see' the individual. You are frightened to think of individuals having a mind and thoughts of their own, because JW's are not allowed to have a mind and thoughts of their own.
  27. 3 points
    It is NOT a matter of conscience ... well, it depends on how far you want to work in the organization. Here in Spain the situation is as follows: In many congregations one may serve as elder still wearing a beard, and therefore enjoy any other local privilege. But that does not work for you in the neighboring congregation. It is usual for a speaker with a beard to inform when they invite him that he is wearing a beard, in case it bothers the conscience of the brothers of the congregation where he will speak. At the circuit level, forget to have part from the platform (with beard). I know of a case that they interviewed a brother with a beard. The traveler (district) forced him to cut it if he wanted to go out in the next section. As he did not want to, they did not let him leave. I think that in some circuit brothers with beards have served as ushers and other auxiliary works, but it has not been general. In the case of another circuit they asked the traveler about which males with beards could be ushers. Answer: "When you see one of Bethel with a beard, then. Meanwhile I do not want to be the first. On a global level, have we seen a man with a beard in the broadcasting, or in the videos of the regional assemblies? Yes ... representing the role of non-believer, opposite husband or person in a bad spiritual state. Result of all the previous thing: to take beard between us is a thorny subject, problematic, if you want to have to fully serve for others. If you settle for being "rank and file" maybe they do not mess with you. If, when going to preach, people would say to me "can you wear a beard?" I will give you a short answer: yes, of course. The most extensive answer is the one I mentioned above. A well-groomed beard in Spain is not at all a sign of rebelliousness or careless dress. The King of Spain has a beard. The previous prime minister too. When preaching, it does not attract attention. Someone will say: "Videos and broadcasting are prepared taking into account the society or brotherhood of North America" To which I will reply that it is said again and again that the Governing Body intends an "international flavor" in our publications and videos, collecting scenes from everywhere, even the clothes. So, why is not it seen in the videos, or in the pictures in our magazines an elder directing the Watchtower study with a beard? Why are all seen with beards unbelievers? Why, when you progress, you see them shaving? I find that it is a minor matter whether I wear a beard or not. That's why I will not leave it, to avoid more complications than the many I have in my life. But what is not a minor issue is that we are imposed the conscience of others (2 Corinthians 1:24) “Not that we are the masters over your faith, but we are fellow workers for your joy”
  28. 3 points
    Never use a credit card if you want to enjoy financial peace. Start creating an emergency fund for those unexpected expenses. That should be ordered everywhere. 🤭
  29. 3 points
    Sometimes Lawyers wear some pretty strange clothing, depending on the Venue.
  30. 3 points
    Yes my dear @The Librarian ... do you like this for next convention? 😁🤭
  31. 3 points
    Hey critical thinker, why are you on here?
  32. 3 points
    Space Merchant

    THE TRINITY

    Because a debate does not end when the points and conclusions are made. What remains open ended are your horrendous claims. The fact you never been in a debate yet start one shows how foolish you truly are, depraved. You speak of vocabulary and yet you cannot even say "Restorationist". lol Perhaps it is you who needs the dictionary far more than I. Biblical Unitarians are not Restorationist, however, we take up the study of the Bible seriously, and we study religion, more so, Theological study and discussion is something we take up when it comes to learning about Jesus' church. The study of religion as defined in short: Religious studies, also known as the study of religion, is an academic field devoted to research into religious beliefs, behaviors, and institutions. It describes, compares, interprets, and explains religion, emphasizing systematic, historically based, and cross-cultural perspectives. I stated to you 4 times before I study religion even though I am a Biblical Unitarian, i.e. Islam, Judaism, etc. It is funny because even the Christology of Restoraionist has been addressed 7 times to you, yet your ignorance and appeal to motive shows you to be a bigger fool than realized. That being said, the debate does not end because you began the debate regarding baptism and now into preaching the gospel and second, the claims you made are still in demand of answer and or forfeit. I agree with the teenager, you are perhaps quite idiotic when it comes to debate especially when you start one with a Christian who lives for debate - fool's errand on your part, simpleton. For his words hurt you because of your reaction to what he had said. If you want to run from a debate you started, that is find with me.
  33. 3 points
    don't put any food in your mouth
  34. 3 points
    He stands in opposition and exalts himself above every so-called god or object of worship, so that he sits down in the temple of God, publicly showing himself to be a god. This has to be the GB of JW Org. They have exalted themselves above every other human on this earth. Above all of the true Anointed. Even to a point above Jesus Christ.
  35. 3 points
    And so the Lord says, “These people say they are mine.They honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me.And their worship of me is nothing but man-made rules learned by rote. Isa 29:13 ("Greek version reads Their worship is a farce, / for they teach man-made ideas as commands from God.Compare Mark 7:7")
  36. 3 points
    What's this about allowed/not allowed to have a beard? You can do what you want. You will just be limited in what privileges you get in some congregations. So it's up to you. Thankfully sisters don't have beard restrictions. A sister with a beard can still pioneer 😀
  37. 2 points
    Why? Give me one good reason why one would NOT report it? I disagree. The law does not state that clergy is NOT allowed to report. That being said, if they report, they are not breaking the law. This is partially true, the clergy privilege is when something is confessed one on one, not in the group setting as in a judicial meeting. How would anyone else in the cong know if it was only confessed to the elders? They wouldn't, unless they were part of it This is why a private reproof is BS! again, you are thinking along the lines that secular authorities need to correct the wt, they will, just wait and see. Why is it that in the elders handbook that vandalism is reported immediately but child abuse is not? Does that seem right to you? I know it doesn't and that you don't think that way, but the wt does.
  38. 2 points
    Baruq JW

    Open letter to Daro Weilburg

    Do you want to say that she should not have complained about being raped?
  39. 2 points
    I can't believe this experience is true. It must be the same as the so-called experiences heard in speeches at conventions. I believe that brothers should have fun inventing facts. In 2019, while there is no longer work for anyone, the Watchtower is still discouraging studies and thus building an army of future unemployed who will live on welfare.
  40. 2 points
    The Watchtower never gives orders. They suggest; then suggest; then suggest. And if the suggestion is not followed, then the elders suggest; then suggest; then suggest. And if this is not enough, the Circuit Overseer will come to make a speech in which he will suggest; then he will suggest; then he will suggest.Until all witnesses follow suggestion. And if then a JW arrives who does not follow the suggestion, he will be strongly suggested by the elders who will tell to him that it is important to follow suggestions, which at this point will no longer be suggestions, but laws.
  41. 2 points
    If you don't mind for connecting this two comments. "Baptism" of this man is done because he want to "dedicate" (guess) himself to God - spiritually , not to WT Society. But - factually, he made sort of "Contract, in corporative language, with WT Society through WT Representative who immersed him in water. Well, if God accepted his dedication, despite fact he has two wife's (perhaps he was repentant all the time, but he chooses second wife) than his baptism, spiritually is valid. But second (hidden) part of his "dedication" - to WT Society - is in question, and that sort of "dedication" has been possible to delete in Administrative manner, because he also was hiding some important information.
  42. 2 points
    Does not matter a jot. The baptism is a symbol of the candidate's dedication, not that of the baptiser. If any words are spoken at all, they should be spoken by the one submitting to baptism, and directed to the one receiving their dedication. And, of course, such words, as evidence of a totally private and personal act of worship on the part of the individual, can, appropriately, be silently expressed.
  43. 2 points
    I don't have a flair for your stupidity anymore James. There is nothing intelligent that comes out of that crooked mind than can be debated.
  44. 2 points
    Disagree. Their say is the fact that their blood cries out from the ground over any injustice imposed upon them in this life. (Genesis 4:10) . . . Your brother’s blood is crying out to me from the ground. (Revelation 6:9, 10) . . .the souls of those slaughtered because of the word of God and because of the witness they had given. 10 They shouted with a loud voice, saying. . . A sheep bleats and bleats to be saved after falling into a pit on the Sabbath. A strict Sabbath-keeper will sacrifice the life of that sheep by imposing his conscience over the life of that sheep. (Deuteronomy 19:10) In this way no innocent blood will be spilled in your land that Jehovah your God is giving you as an inheritance, and no bloodguilt will come upon you. (Deuteronomy 27:25) . . .“‘Cursed is the one who accepts a bribe to kill [a soul of innocent blood] an innocent person.’ (And all the people will say, ‘Amen!’) (Matthew 12:11, 12) . . .“If you have one sheep and that sheep falls into a pit on the Sabbath, is there a man among you who will not grab hold of it and lift it out? 12 How much more valuable is a man than a sheep! . . . I am sorry, I realized it sounded like I was telling you what you should be thinking. There were a lot of people coming and going out of the house and talking to me, so I found it hard to concentrate, I changed the sentence around a bit and forgot to put the I back. It should have read " so I don't think..." Of course the child has rights, and one of those rights is the right to live. I think I am beginning to understand the angle you are looking at it from. Like what right do the parents have to say that a child is to die as a result of their (the parents conscience). It's complicated, because it's true that no one has the right to decide over the life (as in life or death) of another human. On the other hand the parents are responsible in Jehovah's eyes to uphold the law. I understand now why you brought up the parallel example with the pets. So in effect persons are upholding the law not only for themselves but also for others in their care, whether it be children or pets. (Or as you call it imposing their conscience). I can see that a part of the problem is that both children and pets are dependent on the adults and that both children and pets are not able to make informed decisions like the adults are, and therefor the adults in charge of them make the decisions for them. But I think the main misunderstanding in our dialogue has been because we have both been approaching the issue from different angles, for example the Bible says children belong to Jehovah, and that they are merely in the parents care. So assuming Jehovah really means that the law on blood includes all forms of manipulation with blood, and all forms of ingesting blood whether by mouth or intravenously, what would HIS decision be regarding the treatment of the child? In that case, aren't the parents merely trying to uphold what they believe would be Jehovah's decision, rather than anything to do with imposing their conscience onto a dependent child? So I think that's the angle I was coming at it from. But you were looking at it from the point of view of the rights of a dependent child (or pet) per se. Am I understanding it right?
  45. 2 points
    First of all, understand that I have nothing against gun ownership. I have nothing against hunting, animal control, target practice, or even self-defense with whatever weapon is appropriate to the defense of my family. I don't own a gun, and probably never will, because I think the likelihood of needing one in this particular time period in the United States is very low. Also, I am not trained in their use, and could just as easily produce a tragedy under the same stressful circumstances that might require one. Trained police often kill innocents. Part of this is the fact that a person who has a gun tends to think he needs it more often than people who don't have guns. That said, I have a constitutionally supported reason when I say it doesn't matter what the constitution says or even exactly what it meant when it was written. That's because even if we understand it perfectly, a nation is free to change it. This is what amendments are in the first place. Some nations have done well to completely change their constitution. Rip up the old one and start over. You already understand well that our constitution was written by and for landowners. Many parts of it were also written specifically to permanently remove and reduce the perceived political power of poor whites, poor blacks, poor native Americans, etc. So when I say it doesn't matter, I mean that it can lawfully be updated according to its own constitutionally provided processes. This is good when parts of it appear obsolete or unjust. It's not likley that ALL of it will ever be seen that way, but the State has such power, if done in a careful way acceptable to "the people." (And "the people" include many more voices than were intended in the first ratification of amendments using the term.) We can know the mind of some of the framers by reading the Federalist Papers, and reading the comments and explanations of their actions when serving in office. The strength of the Federal government in the US itself is quite different now than what was originally intended. One might be afraid of what stupid people will do when they realize they have the power to change the constitution, but it's not written in stone. Checks and balances were added to keep a government as conservative and stable as possible, avoiding wholesale disruption, but it's as fluid as "the people" will allow under those constraints.
  46. 2 points
    I remember a super glue commercial from a long time ago with a man holding onto his super glued helmet and hanging in the air. I also remember sitting in the Montreal Olympic stadium and being told that the roof was held up by epoxy. I wonder if it is still held up that way to this day?
  47. 2 points
    What I like about Newton is that as opposed to Russell, Rutherford, Franz, the 1990 leadership and the 21 century leadership is that he "predicted" the "end" to be NOT in his lifetime. All the others did. Interesting.
  48. 2 points
    This is puzzling. Why should the plaintiff have the right to demand anything that had nothing to do with his case? I wouldn't go that far. I have no idea what John Redwood is talking about here. Perhaps I should ask him. If elders became mandatory reporters, how would that affect anything? It would just mean that every future case, or suspicion of child abuse or accusation would be reported to the police. How would that be losing a tight grip on the elders? It appears that the main reason for the appeal is that this would allow for non disclosure of historical cases, and hence limit law suits.
  49. 2 points
    Biddy: Thanks for that. It encouraged me a LOT .. and I am very hard to encourage.
  50. 2 points
    If memory serves (?) that scripture also says "In my Holy Mountain" or something like that. In the world at large, animals have to eat each other, or in the New World, we will be deluged by a half-mile high Tsunami of ravenous rodents, etc., ad infinitum. Animals can be trained to live together in peace and harmony ... I see something like that between my five dogs and 16 chickens ....but if I fed my dogs straw ... all bets are off.




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