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Showing content with the highest reputation on 09/16/2019 in all areas

  1. 3 points
    It's ALL about credibility. It's a constant battle between WANTING to be obedient ... and not being an obvious moron. Roughly the equivalent of not buying lunch at Churches Fried Chicken, for religious reasons.
  2. 3 points
    A year or two after I was baptized, about 1968, our Circuit Overseer (called the "Circuit Servant" back then) gave a talk on a Tuesday that railed against giving our old junk to the Salvation Army. (We used to give up the Book Study night for the first meeting with the Circuit Overseer.) This didn't bother anyone too much because we didn't have a Salvation Army around the city, and most of us only BOUGHT things at the local GOODWILL STORE which was huge in our city, and it was unlikely that any of us gave anything to any of these stores, anyway. But someone was bound to ask, not during that meeting, but sometime before the Thursday night meeting, so that the Circuit Overseer mentioned the question, and that he had left out the fact that even BUYING at these stores is supporting false religion, and he added that the GOODWILL STORE was founded by a Reverend So-and-So. I know that my mother was like . . . "Why did that person have to ask?" It was her favorite place to shop, spoiled by someone asking the wrong question. Fast forward 50 years, and I'm cleaning out junk for my parents at their house in California to move them into an apartment last year. We've got 3 Witness families happy to take quite a lot of the stuff, but there was still quite a bit that no one took. So I boxed it up and told them that I'd drop it off at the local GOODWILL STORE. My mother said, "Fine." And I reminded her of what Brother Kent Karras (the Circuit Overseer) had said. She remembered, and told me that his counsel "lasted all of about 2 weeks." I told her I didn't know she was such a rebel.
  3. 2 points
    Instead of being guided by an extensive manual of what to do and what not, I try to follow, in this order: (Romans 6:14). . You are not under the law [RULES] but under an undeserved kindness. . . [PRINCIPLES] Common sense is the least common of the senses. But, as @James Thomas Rook Jr. has said very well, many times I cannot behave openly because (Romans 14:21) "It is best not to eat meat or drink wine or do anything over which your brother stumbles. . ." What @Jack Ryan mentions I would summarize as follows: The vast majority of JW's sincerely believe that we will be the only ones to be saved (those who were inside the ark lived, no one outside the ark survived). And stick to this and other similar models to believe that. Normally they are those who believe that we are better than others and, not infrequently, their way of being is in some measure pharisaic. Others, however, think that a God of love, that the Judge of the whole Earth, cannot be so strict. A little with the doubts that Abraham presented to the angel walking towards Sodom. I have to admit that I have belonged to the first group for a long time. Of course, the statements in our publications are, almost exclusively, in support of the "hard" stance, the one quoted by Jack Ryan.
  4. 2 points
    Well you've got to be reasonable. The question is; is our employment closely and consistently tied with false religion. One off things don't count I'm sure. One thing is fixing a church HVAC, and another is specializing in polishing church steeples.
  5. 2 points
    Thank you for your response. I will continue to hold the Governing Body as seen through the eyes of Jesus, not in reverence but deserving of respect for their hard work and dedication to Jehovah. I can see the difference with the Holy Spirit that Jehovah lays out for each of us. 1 Corinthians 12:8-10 American Standard Version (ASV) 8 For to one is given through the Spirit the word of wisdom; and to another the word of knowledge, according to the same Spirit: 9 to another faith, in the same Spirit; and to another gifts of healings, in the one Spirit; 10 and to another workings of [a]miracles; and to another prophecy; and to another discerning of spirits: to another divers kinds of tongues; and to another the interpretation of tongues: While the Governing Body is a servant that feeds Jehovah’s domestic flock, I don’t believe as you stated that Elders receive the same level of the Holy Spirit as they do. All baptized and dedicated persons receive God’s Holy Spirit. But I just don’t see where it would be, in particular to suggest the inheritance of that spirit is the same. Do you think that “women” can be elders? Romans 12:6-8 American Standard Version (ASV) 6 And having gifts differing according to the grace that was given to us, whether prophecy, let us prophesy according to the proportion of our faith; 7 or ministry, let us give ourselves to our ministry; or he that teacheth, to his teaching; 8 or he that exhorteth, to his exhorting: he that giveth, let him do it with [a]liberality; he that ruleth, with diligence; he that showeth mercy, with cheerfulness. I will agree in one point you made. All baptized witnesses should “obey” those that take the lead in order for Jehovah to see the harmony within the organization. Hebrews 13:17 17 Obey your leaders and submit to them, for they watch over your souls as those who must give an account. To this end, allow them to lead with joy and not with grief, for that would be of no advantage to you. I have no inclination to disrespect God for the choices he makes in man, and whom he chooses to receive God's instructions. Can I ask? Are you a Jehovah's Witness? Do you believe, as the Bible students did, to have each congregation run independent of each other? Given your response, I cannot support that kind of man's logic. I will instead support scripture as divine truth.
  6. 2 points
    ...and for those Brothers and Sisters that I have not already stumbled, and who have cast themselves into a fiery pit of outrageous indignation, here is a racist depiction of illegal aliens ...... Sesame Street_ The Martians Discover a Telephone.mp4
  7. 2 points
    I included a large portion of the page where the paragraph in question ends. This is because there really is a bit of a change in the overall message here. The idea that a Witness MUST make sure that his or her secular employment has NOTHING to do with Babylon the Great had been a very strictly enforced rule in the past, and it has been relaxed somewhat in the last 20 years. I have no idea what's right or wrong in this regard, because there are some statements that still allow for this to be a matter of conscience, to some extent. Even the paragraph above uses the words "a Christian who is employed by some other business would not want to do extensive work at a facility that promotes false worship." This starts to bring up quite literally THOUSANDS of examples of work that will become questionable again. How much work is extensive work. My son graduated high school in 2011 with a person who went to Italy to learn how to restore artwork for museums. If she's working on 10 projects and has just been given a statue to restore that was partially burned at Notre Dame, would she refuse, or consider it only one of 10 projects and therefore "not extensive"? If she can finish the piece in only two weeks and not have to step foot herself in the church, then is it "extensive?" (This young woman is not a JW, by the way, so she's happy for the work.) We went through so many of these legalistic ideas in the 1970's, where brothers lost their privileges and were put on "probation" or "public reproof" for taking on certain kinds of work, that I just hate to see it become Pharasaical again.
  8. 2 points
    So, if I am a HVAC contractor, and a church calls me up to fix their furnace or air conditioner, I can't do it? That is insanity on parade, and total nonsense. It is also DANGEROUS, because that perspective warps minds. OURS! WE BUY CHURCHES, chop off the steeple and cross, and rededicate it as a Kingdom Hall. I went to an OBVIOUS converted church-to-Kingdom-Hall, when I was a young boy, dropped a bag of marbles at the back, and they rolled all the way to the front, on a tile floor, in South Richmond, Virginia. False religion got "our" money, for the sale. We got the building.
  9. 1 point
    Yes, common sense is great! A few weeks ago, we had the video about the brother getting a bit materialistic and buying a big TV, a fancy coffee maker and fancy car. After study and meditating he realised it was not a good idea so he went and took these things back and he replaced the TV with a really small one. On the way home, the COBE and his wife joked about it in the car (I was getting a ride with them). She said; "did he really have to replace it with the size of a computer monitor"? (lols from all of us) "I mean come on, you'd need a pair of glasses to see that!" (more lols). Me: "so on Sunday when you are at our house for FS you know what you're going to see on our wall" (now really cracking up...tears rolling down face). This back and forth and laughter lasted till we almost got to my house. Of course the conclusion was that this extremism was for illustrative purposes only, and not to be taken literally. However, we all agreed that in the past, and even now, some friends might take it literally... Later on my husband made a point that on a very small TV, one could still watch the bad programs, if you sat really close that is (lol).
  10. 1 point
  11. 1 point
    I think you are exactly right. This is why I said the following: That was based on Hebrews 13, of course, and also: (1 Tim. 5:17) Let the elders who preside in a fine way be considered worthy of double honor, especially those who work hard in speaking and teaching. As Christians, we should question every one of our teachings, to make sure it is brought into obedience with Christ's teachings. We should never shirk our responsibility to "make sure of all things," "prove to yourselves," "test the inspired utterances," "pay close attention to your teaching," "see whether these things were so," etc., etc. And since the Governing Body have become the most public of our elder committees, and have taken on a greater responsibility, it is vital that we question them just as we should question a local body of elders. More will be asked of those to whom more has been given. Teachers will receive heavier judgment. We don't just want to have our ears tickled. In the NWT, the paragraph that starts out with 1 Tim 5:17, quoted above, ends with this phrase, after a discussion about reproving elders before all onlookers: (1 Timothy 5:21) 21 I solemnly charge you before God and Christ Jesus and the chosen angels to observe these instructions without any prejudice or partiality. Remember that there was a group of men in the first century that, due to a set of circumstances, were being seen as a kind of "governing body" that was at least indirectly exerting an strong influence on the doctrines of distant congregations. Galatia was very far from Jerusalem; it was about as far from Antioch, as Antioch was from Jerusalem. So Paul wrote to Galatia about those men who were at least indirectly creating such an influence on them, and he said: (Galatians 1:7-3:1) 7 Not that there is another good news; but there are certain ones who are causing you trouble and wanting to distort the good news about the Christ. . . . Is it, in fact, men I am now trying to persuade or God? Or am I trying to please men? If I were still pleasing men, I would not be Christ’s slave. . . . 15 But when God, who separated me . . . so that I might declare the good news about him to the nations, I did not immediately consult with any human; 17 nor did I go up to Jerusalem to those who were apostles before I was, but I went to Arabia, and then I returned to Damascus. 18 Then three years later I went up to Jerusalem to visit Ceʹphas, and I stayed with him for 15 days. 19 But I did not see any of the other apostles, only James the brother of the Lord. . . . . 2 Then after 14 years I again went up to Jerusalem with Barʹna·bas, also taking Titus along with me. 2 I went up as a result of a revelation, and I presented to them the good news that I am preaching among the nations. This was done privately, however, before the men who were highly regarded, to make sure that I was not running or had not run in vain. 3 Nevertheless, not even Titus, who was with me, was compelled to be circumcised, although he was a Greek. 4 But that matter came up because of the false brothers brought in quietly, who slipped in to spy on the freedom we enjoy in union with Christ Jesus, so that they might completely enslave us; 5 we did not yield in submission to them, no, not for a moment, so that the truth of the good news might continue with you. 6 But regarding those who seemed to be important—whatever they were makes no difference to me, for God does not go by a man’s outward appearance—those highly regarded men imparted nothing new to me. 7 On the contrary, . . . .9 and when they recognized the undeserved kindness that was given me, James and Ceʹphas and John, the ones who seemed to be pillars, gave Barʹna·bas and me the right hand of fellowship, so that we should go to the nations but they to those who are circumcised. . . . 11 However, when Ceʹphas came to Antioch, I resisted him face-to-face, because he was clearly in the wrong. 12 For before certain men from James arrived, . . . 13 The rest of the Jews also joined him in putting on this pretense, so that even Barʹna·bas was led along with them in their pretense. 14 But when I saw that they were not walking in step with the truth of the good news, . . . . 3 O senseless Ga·laʹtians! Who has brought you under this evil influence. . . ? So when Paul told Timothy not to show any partiality when it came to reproving elders before all onlookers, we see that Paul had already "walked the walk." If we are to be imitators of Paul's example, then we should be willing to look closely at all the doctrines and influences that we are taught, no matter who they come from. Even if from those who seem to be important, even if from the very pillars of the congregation, even if from James, Peter or John, or men sent from them. Would we be willing to resist such ones face to face? Or would we yield in submission because they were highly regarded? Fortunately, of course, that matter in Jerusalem was cleared up with the help of the holy spirit. Fortunately for us, most matters of this magnitude have already been cleared up, too, and we have no problem always giving the benefit of the doubt to those who want us to submit to their lead. This probably causes no problems at all for 99 percent of us. But we should still learn from the apostle Paul's words, that our teachings should not come from men, and that we should always be ready to resist any teachings that still need to be brought into harmony with the good news, no matter from whom or where we learned them. We should be happy to have a committee of elders who are willing to take on the necessary responsibilities for the world-wide congregations. We should respect them, honor them, and follow their lead. However, the teaching that claims that the Governing Body is equal to the Faithful and Discreet Slave of Mt 24 is one of those teachings that we should question, specifically for the Biblical reasons that Jesus and Paul gave us. Also because it directly contradicts other Watchtower teachings from the March 15 2015 Watchtower. Also, it gives the impression that there are specific humans that we should always identify as Leaders, (even "Governors") instead of looking IMPARTIALLY to each particular example of conduct and faith, to contemplate how it turns out. It gives us the impression that, for doctrinal matters, a certain group of men should always have the FINAL say, and can therefore override the Christian-trained conscience of individuals, who will stand or fall before the judgment seat as individuals. As true and discreet slaves, we will each take the initiative (take the lead, see footnote on) in carrying each other's burdens. None of us, no matter how much we think of ourselves, will believe that more honor goes to us than we should give to others. This is what true obedience means: (Galatians 6:2-5) . . .Go on carrying the burdens of one another, and in this way you will fulfill the law of the Christ. 3 For if anyone thinks he is something when he is nothing, he is deceiving himself. 4 But let each one examine his own actions, and then he will have cause for rejoicing in regard to himself alone, and not in comparison with the other person. 5 For each one will carry his own load. (Romans 12:9-16) 9 Let your love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is wicked; cling to what is good. 10 In brotherly love have tender affection for one another. In showing honor to one another, take the lead.[fn, initiative] 11 Be industrious, not lazy. Be aglow with the spirit. Slave for Jehovah. 12 Rejoice in the hope. Endure under tribulation. Persevere in prayer. 13 Share with the holy ones according to their needs. Follow the course of hospitality. 14 Keep on blessing those who persecute; bless and do not curse. 15 Rejoice with those who rejoice; weep with those who weep. 16 Have the same attitude toward others as toward yourselves; do not set your mind on lofty things, but be led along with the lowly things. Do not become wise in your own eyes.
  12. 1 point
  13. 1 point
    What a paranoid nutcase, someone who has become a self-fulfilling prophesy! If I didn’t know better, I would say he is one of Jack Ryan’s IMF secret agents. How did he get to be this way? Did the fellow, probably always quirky but also idealistic, once require readjusting, per 2 Corinthians 13:9-11, and someone too heavy-handed used a sledge hammer instead of a chisel? Surely the “people afraid” must be those found online, certainly not in the flesh at the Kingdom Hall, for this “fear” is not the spirit that exists at any Hall that I am aware of. If they are online, then they are murky. You don’t know who they are, regardless of what they may say. Yet if these are the ones you hang out with, you do nothing but feed into your confirmation bias, which seems well past the point of no return Nurturing that bias from online, my guess is that you project it on ones who you actually meet in person, because they are simply not that way in reality. The complaining spirit is yours, not theirs. The fear is yours, not theirs, that if you actually speak openly of your contempt for those taking the lead in the Christian Congregation, they will immediately apply to you the verse about gangrene—diseased tissue that is beyond the point of healing, and start thinking of how one must deal with gangrenous tissue. (2 Timothy 2:17) And does newbie @Sean Migos think that he can find things “spiritually uplifting” here? Provocative, yes, newsworthy sometimes, even thoughtful in places (though not this one). But for what is truly spiritually uplifting, one must search within the context of the congregation, “a pillar and support of the truth.” (Not to discourage Sean, of course, who states his case well, but just to serve as a reality check) There was that plea from JTR on what was to be found in the Love Never Fails convention. After attending, I thought of the discussion of what love is, per 1 Corinthians 13, specifically how it covers a “multitude of sins”—whether they be yours or those of others. But I also anticipated the reaction: “Yeah, I’ll start when they start.” I fear the heart has become too hardened for any of that counsel to sink in.
  14. 1 point
    The expectation of being spiritually uplifted here is zero. I recommend, all Jehovah witnesses that are not in conflict with themselves, not take part here. Being here only serves to rebuff those that have inherited conflict by their own initiative, or had past situations they were sanctioned for. Do not look favorably on that JW only club. It amounts to the same dissidence as it does here.
  15. 1 point
    salomon

    THE INSANE INMATE

    THE INSANE INMATE A young brother imprisoned in Korea in the 90's due to the neutrality issue had a cellmate that was sentenced to death. This cellmate was very violent. One time he punched our brother and tried to start a fight. At that moment, the brother prayed to God to remind him of a Bible account that could be practical in that situation. He then recalled the account when David was persecuted, and he started to act like he was insane. ( 1 Samuel 21:12-15) So, as he was getting hit, the brother started to act like he was crazy. This threw off the attacker and made him confused and disconcerted. The result? He stopped the violence against our brother. Eventually, the young brother moved to another cell. This brother survived the ordeal, remained faithful and now serves as a full-time servant. Lesson? We don't need to be afraid if we face opposition due to our neutrality. Jehovah will sustain us and make us recall exactly what we need to keep our integrity. And that help may come in very unexpected ways.
  16. 1 point
    I won’t dignify a response when the opposition believe they have inherited some kind of truth by the God of this world. Not being inspired or infallible then becomes a different position from the one given by this dedicated opposition. The GB actions seem to prevail on not accepting anything “inspired” by evil works. Can the same be said about the opposition? 1 John 5:19 Can anyone claim infallibility aside from Christ? Weren’t all of the first century Christians infallible? Were they not chosen by Jesus to continue his fine work? I don’t see where this argument can be applied. I will not hold an endless debate with those that oppose the org. I’m looking for meaningful and structured alliances with spiritually awake individuals.
  17. 1 point
    That is pretty impossible for the GB, isn't it? They admit they are not inspired by Holy Spirit, which is the only way they could receive God's instructions. If they were to work as one with the an entire anointed Body, then yes; they would receive instructions of truth through Christ. Col 2:19; 1 Cor 12:21-26; Eph 4:4-6 As for you, the anointing you received from him remains in you, and you do not need anyone to teach you. But as his anointing teaches you about all things and as that anointing is real, not counterfeit—just as it has taught you, remain in him. 1 John 2:27 Holy Spirit, the source of inspiration comes from the vine - Jesus Christ. If these men say they are not inspired, (which they have) they have not 'remained' on the vine. “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. 6 If you do not remain in me, you are like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned. 7 If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. 8 This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples." John 15:5-8 So, whose "instructions" are they carrying out? 2 Cor 11:4,13,14 How does Jesus truly see these men who claim they are not inspired with his truth? “If you love me, keep my commands. 16 And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever— 17 the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you." John 14:15-17
  18. 1 point
    Thank you. Given the preview, here. I will stay out of that club. I don't see anything spiritually uplifting if that is the case.
  19. 1 point
    Here's what I've got so far as an introduction: One Saturday night in the spring . . . . Albert had gone to bed early in the dormitory of the YMCA, where he was living while working in Chicago. Later, his roommate burst into the room to explain a difficulty. He was invited that night to the home of a Mr. and Mrs. Hindman, and their daughter Nora was to have a girlfriend there at the house. Two girls would be too much for Albert’s roommate to handle by himself. With alacrity, Albert rose to the occasion. During the course of the evening, Albert’s roommate was getting along quite famously with the two young ladies. But Mr. and Mrs. Hindman concentrated on Albert . . .
  20. 1 point
  21. 1 point
    Apostates do not really need to destroy the GB's credibility ... the GB does a comprehensive job of destroying their own credibility, with no help from anybody.
  22. 1 point
  23. 1 point
    I am glad you removed that GIF of the man killing a cow with a sledgehammer. It was very upsetting. That's why I get my hamburger as God intended ... on a Styrofoam tray wrapped with cellophane.
  24. 1 point
    Why Coca-Cola Hired This Man to Laugh Really, Really Hard on a Crowded Subway Train Soda brand's latest stunt from Belgium By Tim Nudd
  25. 1 point
  26. 1 point
    Triste que todos tenemos que envejecer..... Como el tiempo pasa rapido. Siente como ayer cuando lo vi cantando en Siempre en Domingo (1991) 😂
  27. 1 point
  28. 1 point
  29. 1 point
    Question. Is that JW only for Jehovah’s witnesses to discuss uplifting spiritual matters or is it the same as it is here where witnesses will come together to criticize doctrine, policy, and the governing body? I don’t want to be part of any unhelpful discussion if I join.
  30. 1 point
    When someone forbids JW members to be critical on WT articles, or not to hear opposite view about JW Organization and GB, under treat of rebuke, shunning and dfd, than that can be understand as intention or reality of idea - "rule over others".
  31. 1 point
    James Thomas Rook Jr.

    Year 2038 problem

    If none of those systems work ... we lose services ... BUT THEY LOSE A LOT OF MONEY BY NOT BEING ABLE TO SELL THOSE SERVICES. I strongly suspect they do not want their income stream truncated ... and in the next ten years will completely fix the problem. Of course, this was before the Snowflakes took over, but the United States fought and won a Global World War on two fronts on opposite sides of the planet .......... in less than ten years.
  32. 1 point
    WOW...... I LOVE SUCH OF FUNNY VIDEO'S IN OUR DREARINESS WORLD ! Look, how he changed the faces of ALL people in this train ;o) Hahahahahahaha - I had to watch it more times here and was laughing with all others Thank you so much LOLOLOL >>>>>>>>>>>>>> hahahahahahahaaa A NICE COCA - COLA PROMOTION.....
  33. 0 points
    Read the club guidelines and that might give you an idea. It is up to you what you want to discuss, and the tone you want to set, especially when you create your own topic. No one is going to make you be part of any discussion, helpful or unhelpful. It is up to you what discussion you join. And the good thing is, if you don't like the club, then there is a button at the top right hand corner which says "leave club" and that will delete your membership.
  34. 0 points
    This is true. My uncle was retired from Circuit work due to his age. (And he just visited two weeks ago.) His reports for many years were only statistical, as he was expected to handle locally any "disciplinary/doctrinal/"political"/spiritual/judicial/appeal" matters, based on his training and good deal of trust. A big part of his week was organizing visits to the inactive list to get them reporting (and attending) again, and then dealing with issues among the elders themselves. District overseers would ask them periodically what they had found most helpful in bringing up the numbers, and we can assume that many of those ideas were fed back to the Service Department. All assignments about what to talk about, and even many "local needs" still came from the top down. In the last few years before retiring, however, he said that there was much more communication about what he felt the congregations needed spiritually, for morale, for encouragement. Also, they are encouraged to write into the Service Department for answers to difficult questions when in previous years they were expected to handle more issues on their own. The article I quoted from above gives the impression that this is mostly a one-way, top down direction from the GB, but this doesn't tell the whole story: *** ws17 February p. 26 par. 17 Who Is Leading God’s People Today? *** We can also remember the Governing Body by following its instructions and direction. The Governing Body gives us direction through our publications, meetings, assemblies, and conventions. It also appoints circuit overseers, who then appoint elders. By carefully following the directions given to them, the circuit overseers and the elders show that they remember the Governing Body. I expect that you were thinking of this same article, just quoted from: *** ws17 February p. 25 par. 15 Who Is Leading God’s People Today? *** Consider what happened in 1973. The June 1 issue of The Watchtower asked whether “persons who have not broken their addiction to tobacco qualify for baptism.” The answer it gave to that question was based on Bible principles, and it was no! The Watchtower cited several scriptures and explained why a person who will not stop smoking should be disfellowshipped. (1 Corinthians 5:7; 2 Corinthians 7:1) It said that this strict standard does not come from humans but comes “from God, who expresses himself through his written Word.” No other religious organization has been willing to rely so completely on God’s Word even when doing so may be very difficult for some of its members. A recent book on religion in the United States says: “Christian leaders have regularly revised their teachings to match the beliefs and opinions gaining support among their members and in the larger society.” The Governing Body, however, is not guided by what most people like.
  35. 0 points
    I believe that the illustration of the Faithful and Discreet Slave applies to the Governing Body. But I also believe that it is presumptuous for anyone to limit the meaning of the Faithful and Discreet Slave to the Governing Body. In fact, making such a claim of BEING the Faithful Slave before Jesus returns to confirm who has actually been "the faithful slave" is presumptuous, and is therefore a sign of being indiscreet. It is the very definition of being "discreet in one's own eyes." (Isaiah 5:21) . . .Woe to those wise in their own eyes And discreet in their own sight! 1 Peter 5:3 was referenced by you and it says: (1 Peter 5:3) 3 not lording it over those who are God’s inheritance, . . . Referring to oneself as "governors" (i.e. a "Governing Body") is exactly what "lording it over" would be expected to look like. So it's not being faithful to this Bible verse, nor to the original illustration of the "faithful and unfaithful steward/slave" in Luke and Matthew. That same point is made in the NWT cross-referenced verse: (2 Corinthians 1:24) 24 Not that we are the masters [lords/governors] over your faith, but we are fellow workers for your joy, for it is by your faith that you are standing. When you mention not wanting to be seen like the Gentiles in Jesus time, you probably recall that this included the titles we might use to identify ourselves as the Gentiles and Jews of Jesus day liked to do: (Matthew 20:25-27) 25 But Jesus called them to him and said: “You know that the rulers of the nations lord it over them and the great men wield authority over them. 26 This must not be the way among you; but whoever wants to become great among you must be your minister, 27 and whoever wants to be first among you must be your slave. (Luke 22:27) 27 For which one is greater, the one dining or the one serving? Is it not the one dining? . . . (Matthew 23:7-10) . . .. 8 But you, do not you be called Rabbi, for one is your Teacher, and all of you are brothers. 9 Moreover, do not call anyone your father on earth, for one is your Father, the heavenly One. 10 Neither be called leaders, for your Leader is one, the Christ. The Governing Body members, through the publications and public conventions, continually point out that they are the ones taking the lead over the congregations, and that correct teaching only comes through the hands of a few, rather than just pointing to how well these teaching match the teachings of Jesus himself. We should consider whether this might actually be the very kind of "overreach" that Jesus warned about. I see nothing at all wrong with the idea of the committee(s) of elders who preside over matters for the collective congregations, just as there is nothing wrong with the committee(s) of elders who preside over matters that come up for local congregations. But it is our Christian duty to question the food served, especially to comment on any concerns with respect to how well it matches the teachings of Jesus, the congregations' true Leader and Teacher. As servants (slaves) the ones preparing such meals should expect and desire to be questioned about the ingredients of the meals they distribute, they should humbly seek out the input of others with respect to the content and quality of the meals prepared and distributed by such stewards. In reality, there is no parable of the "faithful and discreet slave." It's really a parable of the "faithful slave/steward vs. the unfaithful slave/steward," and it everyone's responsibility to act like the faithful one, and not the unfaithful one. All of us need to be faithful rather than unfaithful stewards. In fact the parables are MORE about what it means to be the UNFAITHFUL steward. In the parable of "Who really is the [true] neighbor?" this is only a little bit about the untrue neighbor, and MORE about who really is the "TRUE neighbor," using the example of the good Samaritan. But in this parable about "who really is the true steward?" it's about faithfulness, but it's even MORE about examples of UNFAITHFUL stewards, and various levels of unfaithfulness. That said, it's still true that overseers, including the Governing Body, take on a greater responsibility as stewards. And this also increases the responsibility to act even more faithfully, humbly and discreetly. A slave would never ask for obedience to themselves, only that we obey Christ's leadership. Therefore, as we see how the example of any overseer's faith works out, we obey the lead of those elders. (Hebrews 13:7) While it's true that we are all stewards, every overseer, especially, is God's steward. (Titus 1:7) . . .For as God’s steward, an overseer must be free from accusation, not self-willed, . . . There should be no stewards who set themselves up as a kind of human tribunal: (1 Corinthians 4:2, 3) . . .In this regard, what is expected of stewards is that they be found faithful. 3 Now to me it is of very little importance to be examined by you or by a human tribunal. . . . Paul wrote to congregations in Corinth where certain persons were trying to be too influential in "governing" the faith of those in the congregation, going right back to 2 Cor 1:24 already quoted above.




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