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  1. 6 points
    Here is the material for the weeks of the memorial April 15-21 & April 22-28, 2019. TB Watchtower April 15-21, 2019.pdf Watchtower April 15-21, 2019.doc Watchtower April 22-28, 2019.doc Watchtower April 22-28, 2019.pdf MEETING WORKBOOK week of April 22-28 , 2019 text only.pdf MEETING WORKBOOK week of April 22-28 , 2019 text only.doc MEETING WORKBOOK week of April 22-28 , 2019.pdf MEETING WORKBOOK week of April 22-28 , 2019.doc Additional Highlights -April 22-28, 2019.pdf Additional Highlights -April 22-28, 2019.doc CBS April 22-28, 2019.pdf CBS April 22-28, 2019.doc
  2. 6 points

    UN Compact 2018

    Interesting article and video..... On 11 December most countries will sign the UN Compact in Morocco. It is part of the "Agenda 21" plan for the 21 st century started in 1992. Read up about Agenda 21, agenda 2030 and about this Compact for Migration which will criminalize anyone saying anything against the UN plan. Those countries who signed are obliged to assist migrants financially and basically all people have a right to migrate....(no more borders). About 20 nations are now fighting it and will be forced by fines for not complying. It is part of the UN plan for one world government... Is this real? Or a conspiracy.... ? Watch this little video and give comments of the implications. I have the original documents and on this Youtube link you can also download the UN document "agenda 21". NGOs have already been receiving funds to implement it for the past 20 years and both republican and democratic governments has been changing laws to implement is..... It has been going on under our noses and the general public does not know. My interest in this is the fulfillment of prophecy which indicates the UN or coalition of governments to rule for short period of time before Armageddon. There are huge implications to this .... but first watch this little video to begin the discussion.... here is the link.....
  3. 5 points
    @BillyTheKid46, You seem to spend an inordinate amount of energy trying to provoke persons into fighting with you. It is as though you have a NEED to fight. I have seen this from you (and yours) for quite a while now. In a recent thread about Brother Morris visiting a liquor store, I agreed with you completely that the post was irrelevant and irreverent and it tried to make something scandalous out of a potentially innocent activity without 100 percent proof. (And I thought your pun was good, too. See page 4 of that topic.) You and Melinda Mills spoke about the Venezuelan economic issues under Maduro. You helped to clarify the picture that Melinda posted, the one with worthless money in the gutter, when you provided a link to the explanatory SNOPES article. I mentioned that I appreciated that same SNOPES link you provided because it gave details about how and when those pictures came about, and I quoted verbatim from your link. Then you inexplicably decided to reject the explanation from your own link, and claim that I was somehow attacking the vision that your mother had told you about in the 1960's. What made this so odd was that I had already agreed that the picture was related to that same expectation. My own mother referenced that point from Ezekiel 7:19, as did Melinda's. You said: BTK: "What was fasinating to me, My mother pointed it out to me in the '60s as a devout JW that would happen, and it sure the hell did. There is no photoshop on that. It's not a tale." To which I responded, that in spite of the propaganda use that was presented in SNOPES that, Yes. . . : JWI: "It was still related to Maduro, and is still related to money becoming worthless. It is still supportive of the idea that people will be throwing their money (even their gold) in the streets, because money is of no value as a savior in the day of Jehovah's fury. It shows how bad things can get." To which you responded: BTK: "I understand you are trying desperately to delegitimize my mother’s vision. Do that with your own mother, lay off mine." I didn't bother to respond, after which you added: BTK: "Its unfortunate someone like JWinsider decided to insult and denigrate a relative, and James thinking it’s funny to do just that, makes them the biggest AH’s in this forum." I'm sure that a few people didn't realize that you had made up the whole thing about someone "denigrating a relative" just to provoke a fight in the same way worldly people do when they hurl insults about each other's mother, and call each other "AH," which has been used as an abbreviation for a**hole. When you provoke and the other party doesn't respond in kind, I'm sure it can be frustrating. But please don't bring these same worldly attitudes and posturings into every topic. You end up discrediting yourself instead of your target. "A slave of the Lord does not need to fight." (2 Tim 2:24)
  4. 5 points
    Where did Adam get his?
  5. 5 points
    That's why he's called God's son God completed the rest of the DNA for him
  6. 5 points
    It is understandable for me to see your disappoint about R.F. or similar characters inside JW. Yes, perhaps your view about him is correct. But for many of us is of less concern why he wrote a book about GB and WT. We can feel sorrow for him or we can say he is/was hypocrite. Nevertheless, information's we get from his inside insight about WT GB mechanism are more important then he alone. Because "The Truth" is in question, not he, not me, not you. He was the one who has must struggle with HIS conscience why he stay inside and support all wrongs he knew about, despite knowledge he had. He was the one who has been responsible for covering this too long and so on. I do not care, in final stage of matter, what was his motive. Only important thing for me is; Is it that or this, what he said, true?
  7. 5 points
    Just a little more longwinded opinion here. I think his tone and most of his words were intended to portray himself as someone who recognizes that there were and are human rights issues to take care of now and to avoid in the future. He also is is to be seen as a source of wise advice, giving the impression that if he had just known some of these issues in advance that he would have known better ways to handle these things. But he also recognizes that some issues are too complex to make snap decisions about on the spot. He gives the impression that he is generally knowledgeable, perhaps had an idea about some of these issues, but was really just now learning the specifics, either on the spot or from reading the papers provided in preparation for the meeting. Otherwise he would be portraying himself and therefore the Russian nation as knowingly culpable in any of the errors that had been made in the name of the state. That's the big difference in using the term to mean "prosecute" vs "persecute." If he had intentionally used the term to mean "persecute" this would have been very much at odds with that tenor -- it admits national culpability -- and that he KNOWS there is national culpability. That's why it is very different from "prosecute" which admits only procedural error at most, e.g., too strict a definition being put on the word "extremist," and therefore something that could potentially be redressed merely through a change or adjustment in judicial procedure, if deemed necessary. To me, his words indicate that he would not be averse to a positive change in the procedure against "extremist" groups, especially when these are generally seen as "Christian" groups. It seems he would be more forgiving of first time offenses of trying to proselytize. I don't get the impression that he, on his own, will want to make a big deal of what happened with the Witnesses. But he will no doubt be informed again of the JW status and will be more knowledgeable each time he is re-informed, and this could easily lead to a situation very soon where he asks for a change to the procedure against JWs. The JWs may have to "compromise" in the sense of being more of an autonomous religious group in Russia that doesn't give the impression that it merely takes all marching orders from outside of Russia (New York). To work well in Russia, the state wants to know that tens of thousands of people are not going to suddenly begin carrying "Religion is a Snare and a Racket" signs in the streets, or drink Kool-Aid, or collect money for a corporation in Wallkill, New York where instruction will trickle down through other branches to update rules about where new Halls will be built, what to do about national anthems, military service, blood transfusion policy, or look to an internal judicial system that could be seen as competing with or overriding that of the state. When he is advised again about the JWs, he will be concerned about how it looks to his own nation, outside international organizations, how it reflects on himself, and therefore, if making a change is useful or worth the effort. I don't get the impression he is anxious to make a big deal about it. I see it very possible that his own advisors on these issues could talk him out of doing something, even if he thinks it is advisable. I see right now as a good time for the WTS HQ to help orchestrate the leverage of human rights organizations. Getting 8 million people to write the same set of letters is not as impressive to him as it seems to us, because it only proves that the very thing he doesn't want in a Russian religion, exists to the nth degree in our religion: that everyone follows orders from the same HQ outside of Russia.
  8. 5 points
    In Russian "преследовать" can be translated as "prosecute" or "persecute". Maybe it is better to ask the president what did he mean by saying this :D
  9. 5 points
    . “When you give … do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing” (Matthew 6:3) Matthew 6:1 (BBE) Take care not to do your good works before men, to be seen by them Matthew 6:4 so that your giving may be in secret. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you. Personaly i think IF you seeking for blessings its bettet to do hours with out telling anyone.
  10. 5 points
    JW Insider

    In Defense of Shunning

    From what I can gather here about you, I think that most of the 130 do not believe you are evil, and probably do not wish to treat you badly, but as you say, they THINK they are following the rules. Also, they will not merely treat you this way just because they feel you were concerned about the "child abuse" issue. If you have told the whole story then it is pretty clear that you are treated as someone who has formally disassociated, and we are told to treat that person the exact same way as someone who was disfellowshipped. (I think that is an abuse of power by the way on the part of the WTS policy.) It's probable that someone has added a few other "details" for the ears of the congregation, real or imagined. The more likely concern is that you have somehow become a spiritual danger because you are actively seeking out false information from apostates to spread it among the congregation in order to sow divisions and contentions. Many in the congregation must believe that your current motive is to promote such apostasy, even if you are personally still "salvagable." They are told that to treat you like this is a way to save you. I personally would not follow the rules in this regard when it is a person I have known and if I feel that my continued association is more likely to be scriptural than unscriptural. There have been two persons where my opinion of them and my association with them didn't change a bit after they were disfellowshipped. One stayed out and one came back. I don't advertise this to the rest of the congregation, for fear of stumbling others, and for my own fear of the same kind of unscriptural disciplinary treatment that others have been subjected to. But there is also a certain kind of friendship we build up with others that goes beyond rules and regulations. We show a certain type of loyalty (loyal love) to the other person, and they to us. In the Bible, if David had become a murderer and an adulterer, Jonathan would have still loyally stuck by him. "There is a friend that sticks closer than a brother." (Prov 18:24) I have seen several friendships like this, and would hope that no human rules would ever get in the way. I had a roommate at Bethel who joked that his friend who had recently been invited to Bethel, was like this. He claimed that even if he murdered someone, that this friend would never change. I thought about that and decided that he should move out and room with this arriving friend. If we truly have love, even for our enemies, we should have no problem dealing with tax collectors and sinners. How much more should we show love to someone who is in dire straits for a reason we already understand and one we can help them understand. This does not mean that I would go out of my way to seek out such a person, unless I was sure I could help them feel better with some encouragement. Often they truly put themselves in a situation where the best thing they to do is to find their way back into the organization and I will often encourage that. But I would never encourage family members to disfellowship themselves from that disfellowshipped person. It has been rare, but as I said, I have had a couple of occasions to "break the rule" in this regard. I like a lot of what the GB and the JW org are doing, and I love many of my fellow associates in the congregation. But, YES, I really mean it. Speaking out is what I am doing right now. I often speak out against unscriptural policies, or discuss them here to help make sure whether my own reasoning is wrong. I don't have to speak out in front of my local congregation, nor do I cause divisions. I speak out on this forum, and I will sometimes speak frankly and honestly with people who approach me in person. I also send a couple letters a year to the GB and JW org. For the past few years, these have been anonymous. I have used this site to try to formulate the scriptural reasoning behind these letters. I have already spoken out against abuse and bad policy in this regard for about seven years now -- not just on forums but in person. This is why I cannot completely understand the treatment you are getting. At several opportunities over the last 30 years, I have spoken out against a policy of tolerating spousal physical abuse against wives, because my own sister had an experience like this with the usual requested cover-up from authorities and hospital personnel. I have even turned in a young 20 year old brother who showed serious problems in this regard at gatherings. He is not quite a person of full mental capacity, but this won't matter to an abused sister who would feel traumatized if he takes these types of actions any further. And it's quite possible he already poses a criminal danger when not in public. There should be heightened awareness of these problems to protect all potential victims, and where necessary, secular authorities and law enforcement need to be involved.
  11. 5 points
    I understand your points and you have expressed them very well. I will address each point you raised separately, but first I just want to mention a few general things which have perhaps shaped the perception of people like you and me. I grew up in the "truth" in the early 80's when the GB was mostly an anonymous mystery, at least to many who were living outside of America. The "truths" people like me assimilated during those years were turned into dogmatic doctrines by people like me. We always talked starting a phrase with "we KNOW....." as if we could never make a mistake. We had a general attitude of superiority. WE had the truth and therefor WE were somehow better than other people. WE had an answer for "everything". And then came the age of the internet. It was a kind of "Internet enlightenment". It had been around for a while before that, but soon everybody had access to it, and was using it. Information that the ordinary person wouldn't have had before, became available to them at the touch of a button. There were things that were "discovered" by the ordinary brother and sister that were there all along, but that were only known by more prominent brothers and sisters, which included those involved with Bethel, but also ordinary brothers and sisters which happened to live closer to the "source" . But now the ordinary brother came to know things that at times "shocked" him, because in their little personal world they had built a picture, but that picture wasn't always correct. As I mentioned, dogmatic opinions on various subjects were formed, which actually were not intended to be understood that way. Here is an example of what I mean; I am sure you know of instances yourself, where a elder giving a talk would expound on something he felt strongly about. A kind of "pet" subject of his. Most of the time the audience would take what he said as gospel truth, and talk about it like it was fact and part and parcel of "official" teachings. But all it actually was, was the brothers opinion. This happened many times in the days of only a brief outline of a talk, giving the speaker much freedom to practically say anything he wanted. A classic and famous example is that of Charles Sinutko giving the talk about 1975. He wasn't just an elder, but a district overseer, and he gave that misleading talk in front of an audience of thousands. Similar talks were given around the world no doubt. I was too young at the time but @Outta Here remembers such talks, and also the almost "fanatical" approach of some in the congregations. Was this all the GB's doing? It wasn't, but it shows the freedom that existed with regard to expressing ones opinion in an "official" setting, by means of talks etc. As you probably know, now there are strict outlines for talks. Not only that, but elders are instructed to Only give the Bible's advice when serving in a shepherding or judicial capacity, and never give their personal opinions. I am sure this new approach became a necessity because of the damage personal opinions had caused in the past. One I want to focus on specifically is the handling of child abuse. The congregation was well equipped to prevent child abuse on the surface. But it was all contingent on members actually reading and applying what was in the publications that discussed those issues. The JW congregation has always been very strict on upholding moral standards. In comparison, the rest of the world was in a moral decline (think "free love" that started in the 60's) and with it no doubt came problems associated with loose morals. Secular authorities were ill equipped to handle accusations of rape and child sexual abuse, as you yourself can testify. In this environment Elders were trying to handle something that was disgusting and shocking and should have never occurred in the Christian congregation in the first place! Some Elders got confused and misapplied WT 1973/11/15 "question from readers" regarding the application of 1 Cor 6:1-7, and the interpretation of 1Timothy 5:19. Many Elders were stuck between a rock and a hard place with regard to reporting to the police because of the way the police handled (or not handled) these cases, and because many victims and their families did not want to report to the police. It was almost like an attitude of: "this is our private problem, and we will handle it as our private problem". Finally today, secular authorities are educated and equipped enough to address these issues properly, and I would say we are at the pinnacle of "enlightenment" with regard to CSA, at least in the western world. Victims are at last able to come forward and be heard. Abusers are being tried and punished. This has also spilled into historic sexual abuse of women as in the #metoo brigade. BUT despite all this, CSA and the abuse of women is as rampant as ever unfortunately.... You have a good heart John and I feel you have unnecessarily thrown the baby out with the bathwater. But I do want to address those issues individually that you mentioned, but I will have to do that tomorrow now as I am running out of time and have to go and cook dinner....
  12. 4 points
    Being as tall as I am, living in the future is no picnic. Keep getting hit by flying cars.
  13. 4 points
    I haven’t actually made any comment about this. However, since I am being drawn into it anyway, let me clarify this nonsense once and for all. This photo is not from Venezuela at all, but it is in one of the southern US states & is in fact a falled bank heist on the part of @Top Cat O'Malighan. His getaway car was hit broadside by @Vic Vomidog, flying at an unusual rate of speed because some Bethel hotshot and been spied with a can of beer, a special meeting of the Apostate Society had been called so as to see how to spin it, he was the Keynote speaker, and he was running late.
  14. 4 points
  15. 4 points
    Take note, @The Librarian. Take a screenshot. Save it for posterity. Show it to your grandchildren. JWI made a comment and he only used ONE WORD! I’ve heard of turning over a new leaf before, but this takes it to a whole ‘nother level. ”There were too many...um...uh....notes,” the prince told Mozart.
  16. 4 points
    "The best sign of truth is simplicity and clarity, the lie is always intricate, tawdry and eloquent." - Tolstoy "The lie does not kill with the mallet, but it runs through blood vessels like poison, slowly and cautiously, so it does not even notice how it works" - Ivan Cankar
  17. 4 points
    God made Adam. He made Eve from Adam's rib. Must be a miracle.
  18. 4 points
    The first one sounds just like a label, the second sounds like the person is living the faith.
  19. 4 points
    It's nice to see children dedicating their lives to Jehovah, unfortunately they are also dedicating their lives to an idol called the wtbts in a contract for life.
  20. 4 points
    The problem with everything legal, people don’t see the downside of the government’s action. It’s always the victim and the perpetrator. Then, vultures disguised as lawyer’s go after an institution without giving the failures of the government, and the responsibility they had to a certain situation any thought of their role and accountability. When a victim wants to hold the government accountable, they can’t. It’s protected. But it’s very easy for the government to pass laws to hold institutions accountable, but not the governmental institutions or departments. Sandusky is a good example of such governmental failures. Assistant Coach Mike McQueary was the first independent witness to say he personally saw Sandusky abusing a child in a football locker room shower in 2002. He also provided a firsthand account of how university officials failed to pursue legal action against the coach. When McQueary testified, he did not know about the 1998 incident, in which Sandusky admitted showering with an eleven-year-old boy. Although Penn State police and the Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare had investigated the claim in 1998, as in 2002 nothing of consequence was done about it. The Freeh report also made damaging claims against Joe Paterno. Paterno, Penn State Officials hid ‘Critical Facts’ Regarding Sandusky Abuse
  21. 4 points
    I did. I have read not all of it but enough of it to formulate my opinion and make a good comment in good conscience. Tom, you have written with a passion and a poise from your true belief and heart. I cannot deny that fact. I commend you for the amount of what you put into words and can honestly say that it truly takes a writer to write as much as you have in this, and the other books you have written. You have given the reader a solid grasp of the topic you represent and that is something I struggle to see here in this forum at times. While I understand that everyone writes for different reasons, some want to provide facts while others want to present missed information and many more reasons. The only thing I can say about your book that is relevant to this topic on this forum, is that it is a opinion piece. There is nothing wrong with that, it just is what it is. I appreciate the fact that you let me read it, it gives me more understanding of who you are and where your thoughts reside. Thank you Tom.
  22. 4 points
    I recalled a comment from last year where you commented positively on the new way of referring to these days as aeons or epochs, rather than literal days, and then added the following comment: 1975+43=2018 (last year). This old reckoning might seem ridiculous now, especially after the Watchtower once argued that this period could be a matter of weeks or months, but could not go beyond 2 years. But there are still some Witnesses who haven't kept up and believe there must be some validity to the 6,000 year theory. (A partial salvage of the theory, without any reference to 6,000 or 7,000 years, was rewritten in a much better way in a 2011 Watchtower: *** w11 7/15 p. 24 God’s Rest—What Is It? *** God’s Rest—What Is It? During the time that Fred Franz was still alive and still working on his last prophetic book "Revelation -- Its Grand Climax at Hand" an article was written dealing with the Jubilee year and how the 49th year was related to the 50th: *** w87 1/1 p. 30 Questions From Readers *** Second, a study of the fulfillment of Bible prophecy and of our location in the stream of time strongly indicate that each of the creative days (Genesis, chapter 1) is 7,000 years long. It is understood that Christ’s reign of a thousand years will bring to a close God’s 7,000-year ‘rest day,’ the last ‘day’ of the creative week. (Revelation 20:6; Genesis 2:2, 3) Based on this reasoning, the entire creative week would be 49,000 years long. . . . According to Romans 8:20, 21, Jehovah God purposes to liberate believing mankind from this slavery. As a result, true worshipers on earth “will be set free from enslavement to corruption and have the glorious freedom of the children of God.”—See also Romans 6:23. . . . While the small group selected to be taken to heaven have had their sins forgiven from Pentecost 33 C.E. onward and thus already enjoy the Jubilee, the Scriptures show that the liberation for believing mankind will occur during Christ’s Millennial Reign. That will be when he applies to mankind the benefits of his ransom sacrifice. By the end of the Millennium, mankind will have been raised to human perfection, completely free from inherited sin and death. Having thus brought to an end the last enemy (death passed on from Adam), Christ will hand the Kingdom back to his Father at the end of the 49,000-year creative week.—1 Corinthians 15:24-26. So although the 1969/1971 Aid Book, as you pointed out, had said that we don't know the length of the creative days, this probably came from the idea that a Bible Dictionary should not contain esoteric beliefs that are not actually based on the Bible, but are just a traditional interpretation. R.Franz must have recognized this fact, while preparing the Aid Book, but apparently there was a faction that thought this "reasonable" approach was very dangerous. It admits that we don't know everything. I have personal anecdote that let me know that this is exactly what at least two brothers (Greenlees and Schroeder) thought would, initially, be the way to get R.Franz removed, by exposing the non-dogmatic approach in the Aid Book style that tends to erode dogma. I'll save the anecdote for another time, but I think it is easy to recognize that this kind of approach to the Bible takes a lot of power away from the interpreters. (The anecdote did not concern the length of the creative days.) Even in the lead-up to 1975, there was a need, probably influenced by the Aid Book, to start using words like "evidently" rather than just speaking dogmatically: *** w73 2/1 p. 82 Will Your Days Be “Like the Days of a Tree”? *** Since each of the creative “days” or periods was evidently seven thousand years long, the whole creative “week” takes in 49,000 years. Compare that with the dogmatism in the previous decades: *** w51 1/1 pp. 27-28 The Christian’s Sabbath *** Since the sabbath was a part of the law and the “Law has a shadow of the good things to come”, of what was the sabbath a shadow? Of the grand rest day for all mankind, the 1,000-year reign of Christ, the seventh 1,000 years of God’s rest day. For six thousand years mankind has been toiling and suffering under “the god of this world”, Satan the Devil. In that antitypical sabbath Christ will free men from the bondage of Satan and his demons . . . *** w63 8/1 p. 460 par. 14 Religion and the Nuclear Age *** We could continue verse by verse through the entire period of the six creative days, periods of time that other Bible passages show to have been each 7,000 years in length. Of course, no other Bible passages were shown to indicate this, just a footnote to see the book by F.Franz, Let God Be True, 1943. Hebrews 3 & 4 does connect Psalm 95:11 to Genesis 2:2, but without any connection to a certain number of years and without any reference to the millennium of Christ's reign.
  23. 4 points

    "You Will Be In Paradise"

    In the Spanish version of the Bible, he directed his words to only one person, he said "te digo" not 2 or more people "les digo"
  24. 4 points
    It’s not so much that you should be. It’s that he shouldn’t have been. It is anything goes here. That’s just the way it is. The one-sided action favors the perception that The Librarian, that old hen, is in bed with apostates. ( Yeccchhhh)
  25. 4 points
    When was it ever anything else? From my point of view, that is almost the sole purpose of this site. Come, come, we must not squabble. We have the same goal, even if we go about it in different ways. I will allow that I am probably too flippant, and post in that spirit what you take seriously. For example, I did a quick & fictional snippet of Fred. That is my bad, and I apologize. JWI deals with egghead stuff that I only skim. Things dealing with dates are not my thing. These are not the ‘motivating’ things that cause people to develop a bad heart. Rather, if some have already developed a bad heart, they latch onto the fact that people ‘at the top’ disagree (Duh) and make maximum hay out of it. Or they find that there has been much hashing out over what eventually comes out as a unified whole, and they bail on that account. The one of good heart sees such disagreement & says ‘Ah, well, they’ll figure it out,’ and carries on without undo fuss. Since we have been wrong many times before, it seems a little foolish to insist that it will never happen again. ‘If they are on the wrong side of this or that bit of prophesy, they’ll figure it out and get on the right side,’ says the one of good heart. No. I don’t care about such things. Why some do I’ll never know, but it’s a good thing that they do. Everyone has a gift. I like to focus on what I think is more relevant - the qualities attributed to ‘apostates’ in Jude and 2Peter—an insistence on self-determination, and a disdain for authority. I am in my element when I get to kick back at those who would capitalize on genuine tragedies, such as CSA, to seek to destroy the ones preaching the good news. With a major ‘reform,’ making clear that there is absolutely no reproach in reporting vile things to the authorities, some of the most virulent of our critics lose something huge to them - a little like ‘what is Tom Brady going to do with himself after he retires?’ Some face withering away like Roger Chillingsworth. They almost have no choice but to find some pissy little thing that could conceivably allow something bad to yet happen and harp on that to the cows come home. Since I don’t care about the aspects of theocratic life that you do, I have probably overstepped in some places and drawn your reproof. I apologize. One of the prime things Jehovah hates is anyone spreading contentions among brothers. I won’t do it. When I once ‘liked’ a post of Captain Zipzeronada, a brother who was solid but rigid was stumbled. I apologized to him and didn’t do it again for the longest time - until the old pork chop said something to reveal that beneath his breathtaking pig-headedness, he was likable in some respects and I couldn’t resist. Our people do not typically do well online. They take shots at each other for not toeing the line in this or that aspect of service. Or they say: “This is what Jehovah has said:” to people who don’t necessarily care what he has said. They look ridiculous as they try to make the Internet behave like the congregation. As much as I appreciate your goal, if you told your circuit overseer that you were having a hard time purifying the Internet, what do you think he would say? You have to cut brothers some slack online. If they shouldn’t be here to say it, you shouldn’t be here to hear it. You know very well that Bethel isn’t thrilled about any of us being here.
  26. 4 points
    I appreciate that. And I held the same view for many years. But we should all share our opinions if our intent in sharing is right. "Out of the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks." And, as Witnesses, we have put ourselves under a certain obligation to share publicly and not hold back, willing to defend our beliefs to anyone who asks. (Matthew 13:51, 52) . . .” 52 Then he said to them: “That being the case, every public instructor who is taught about the Kingdom of the heavens is like a man, the master of the house, who brings out of his treasure store things both new and old.” I do see a problem in trying to share our concerns in the congregational setting, where it could cause division, but the Internet is already full of comments from all angles on this topic, and adding my own opinion here merely allows someone to evaluate it without the need to concern themselves about whether the opinion need to be given a second thought, unless they are also concerned. For all anyone really knows, this opinion of mine could have come from an opposer, an elder, an apostate, a Bible study, the wife of a GB member, a complete outsider, a newspaper researcher, a "Russian" trying to interfere with a US election, or a concerned publisher. If anyone wishes, my opinions can be challenged, as they ought to be. If they are worthless, someone can point that out. If they are only partially worthwhile, and partially worthless, someone (like you) can help filter it. To me, if an answer to these objections is obvious from anyone, then any other person's opinion about it is welcome. (Proverbs 27:17) 17 As iron sharpens iron, So one man sharpens his friend. The public forum of course is as old as elders and judges who were found discussing issues and concerns at the city gates, or the Areopagus in ancient Greece. Having found a public forum here, it doesn't mean I think that a Christian should just publicly expose the sins of others, or constantly tear down. All matters such as these doctrinal issues should be made a matter of serious prayer first, even on a forum such as this. (Ecclesiastes 3:2-7) A time to plant and a time to uproot what was planted; 3 ... A time to tear down and a time to build up; 4 A time to weep and a time to laugh; ... 5 A time to throw stones away and a time to gather stones together;... 6 A time to search and a time to give up as lost; A time to keep and a time to throw away; 7 A time to rip apart and a time to sew together; A time to be silent and a time to speak;
  27. 4 points
    I don't think that title is a bad mantra at all. If you are looking for perfection, that's great. If you are expecting perfection, then you will be without any kind of brotherhood at all, and Christianity requires a brotherhood. Everyone will be different. For me, it's not so difficult. Just review all the topics that you are sure of, at least sure enough so that you can express agreement. Emphasize these. On all other topics just say to the study or householder that 'among Jehovah's Witnesses you will find that most of them accept this particular interpretation of the topic, but that it is a difficult topic for many to understand and if they don't understand it or accept it, that a good understanding of the topic may come in time.' Remind them that Jehovah is more concerned with motivations and our love for one another than any particular teaching or specific action. This is clear from Jesus: (Matthew 7:22, 23) . . .Many will say to me in that day: ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and expel demons in your name, and perform many powerful works in your name?’ 23 And then I will declare to them: ‘I never knew you! Get away from me, you workers of lawlessness!’ (Matthew 25:34-40) . . .“Then the King will say to those on his right: ‘Come, you who have been blessed by my Father, inherit the Kingdom prepared for you from the founding of the world. 35 For I became hungry and you gave me something to eat; I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink. I was a stranger and you received me hospitably; 36 naked and you clothed me. I fell sick and you looked after me. I was in prison and you visited me.’ 37 Then the righteous ones will answer him with the words: ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38 When did we see you a stranger and receive you hospitably, or naked and clothe you? 39 When did we see you sick or in prison and visit you?’ 40 In reply the King will say to them, ‘Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.’ (John 13:35) 35 By this all will know that you are my disciples—if you have love among yourselves.” Once you know which things you want to emphasize in your ministry, then focus on those things. My motto, difficult as it is for me, attempts the following: (Philippians 4:8, 9) . . .Finally, brothers, whatever things are true, whatever things are of serious concern, whatever things are righteous, whatever things are chaste, whatever things are lovable, whatever things are well-spoken-of, whatever things are virtuous, and whatever things are praiseworthy, continue considering these things. 9 The things that you learned as well as accepted and heard and saw in connection with me, practice these, and the God of peace will be with you. We have a lot more freedom in our personal ministry than you imply. The most difficult times will likely be the times when you will be inevitably be asked to take on more responsibility. To hold the title of elder, for example, or to take on the assignment of certain talks that must hold strictly to an outline. But the Witnesses still offer a brotherhood in which it is very possible and enjoyable to succeed in a humble ministry of helping others related to you in the faith. For me it is a brotherhood in which I find friendships and a fellowship of believers who will not kill one another in wars, who will not threaten with violence, who will not judge one to a fiery hell, and who see God as a knowable, loving entity we can approach, and who generally share in a common sense of morality. Imperfect? Yes! But who knows? One might even be able to be a force for good from within without really trying.
  28. 4 points
    Not hardly!! Did you take note at how I knocked the formidable JTR out of the ring? I’ll have you for lunch! By the way, I’m reading a new author of science fiction, Darth Dethway. In a very exciting chapter, the evil alien says: ”Surrender, earthlings! You have no chance! Zip...zero...nada!” Do you think?
  29. 4 points
    Kosonen, thanks for your efforts in searching for WT quotes and presentation of same materials! This reveals how GB operates. "Blind" people have one more chance to see The Real Truth.
  30. 4 points
    16 Not all who have the heavenly hope are part of “the faithful and discreet slave.” (From the same 2016 Watchtower as quoted above by Kosonen) Who has the right to say this ? Who has the right to put that in print ? Note is does not say 'those that might think they have the heavenly hope'. It actually says Not all who have the heavenly hope ... The GB of the JW org approve of this being written and used at meetings of JW's. So the GB themselves are judging the other MEMBERS OF THE BODY OF CHRIST'S BRIDE. The GB are judging those of the 144,000 chosen ones. Has God or Jesus Christ given the GB the right to do the judging ? I would not think so.
  31. 4 points
    Look here for example how the GB wants that local anointed would be treated. You are not even allowed to ask the anointed about their anointing!!! I guess you could get disfellowshipped for that? How crazy is not that? And paragraph 11 insinuates that the local anointed could well be "false brothers" and imposters. GB just says that to make sure you don't trust your local anointed. That is wicked! Now the GB really discourages to do anything specially for the local anointed. Just the opposite what Jesus told. I wonder how many Jehovah's witnesses will continue that fatal course until the end? Here are the recent instructions from GB:
      Hello guest!
    10 How can we show appropriate respect for those whom Jehovah chooses to anoint? We would not ask them personal questions about their anointing. We thus avoid meddling with what does not concern us. (1 Thess. 4:11; 2 Thess. 3:11) We should not assume that the parents, spouse, or other relatives of one of the anointed would also be anointed. Genetics or marriage play no part in the process. (1 Thess. 2:12) We should also resist the urge to quiz spouses of anointed ones about how they feel knowing that they will live without their mate in the future earthly Paradise. Rather than raise questions that may cause pain, all of us can have full confidence that Jehovah will open his hand and “satisfy the desire of every living thing.”—Ps. 145:16. 11. How do we protect ourselves if we avoid “admiring personalities”? 11 Those who treat anointed Christians in a proper manner protect themselves from an insidious danger. The Scriptures tell us that “false brothers” can slip into the congregation. (Gal. 2:4, 5; 1 John 2:19) These impostors may even claim to be anointed. In addition, some anointed Christians might fall away from the faith. (Matt. 25:10-12;2 Pet. 2:20, 21) If we avoid the trap of “admiring personalities,” we will not be drawn away from the truth by such ones; nor will our faith suffer a crippling blow if a prominent or long-serving Christian becomes unfaithful.—Jude 16, ftn.
  32. 4 points

    UN Compact 2018

    Will you allow that an interest in history is permissible? Politics is current history, that’s all, or history in the making. All human governments will drop the ball & usually it is a bowling ball. As people ponder the vulnerability of their right and left toes, thus defines their politics. What is important for the Christian is to avoid taking sides. It is not necessary to be ignorant of it. signed.....Tom Harley - resident scholar (not pseudo-scholar)
  33. 4 points
    JTR: I agree with you here. If you look at the entire meeting, the word "prosecute" was used in the translation a few of the other times, even in similar contexts. Judicial prosecution was already the topic here in nearly every case discussed, but the overall topic is a wider context than the auto-translator AI looks at. The fact that the name of a minority was used in the sentence, "Jehovah's Witnesses," and that the word "Christians" was in the immediate context, this is what probably triggered the translation, "persecute" instead of "prosecute." Of course, this is still a very important admission as @Outta Here has said, and it's in line with what you were thinking about Putin being the one to get it straightened out, if it reaches to a high enough priority. There were several interesting admissions in the meeting, and Putin comes across as very professional, careful, knowledgeable and "wiley." He is just defensive enough to protect himself from various questionable decisions by judges, admits problems with some laws, understands some of the PR issues with the rest of the world, etc. But he also doesn't commit to overturn questionable actions, and doesn't want to give in too much, to avoid the impression, for example, that future amnesty can be counted on, based on past or current amnesty.
  34. 4 points
    Outside of the context of the Christian organization, anybody can say that they are anointed. I can say it. You can say it. Anyone can say it. They might be genuine. They might be deluded. They might even be lying through their teeth, angling for future prominence. How would anyone ever know? In theory, that could also be true of any member of the Governing Body. In practice, it is next to impossible. They have supplied evidence of their anointing through decades of time. They have supplied a track record. They are not people who, though supposedly 'godly,' really couldn't get along with anybody, but they have submitted their faith to practical full-time and unpaid test. They have proven their Christian qualities. Usually they have served in areas far more lowly than that of the ones whom they will later lead. No phony is going to do this....full-time, long-term, and unpaid...but only the genuine article. In contrast, the case seems far weaker with so-called anointed who pop up with unique views and presently begin to separate themselves because they can't get along, grumbling that nobody is listening to them. I'm sorry...I just cannot get my head around renegade anointed roaming in the wilds.
  35. 4 points
    @Arauna I was thinking about the frustrations you expressed earlier. I will create a club on here for JW's that feel as you do. I too sometimes feel frustration when conversations are constantly being turned back into pedophilia etc. on unrelated topics.
  36. 4 points
    Yes of course, Satan is in control of the world, and that perfectly explains the "mess", but by discussing these things we are not making ourselves a part of it are we? Not only that, but notice that my reason for my initial comment was because I have someone who is interested in the Bible, but who is actually involved in one sector of what we are discussing. The reason for me to "educate" myself, at least with what the various terminology means, is so that I can better understand what this person is talking about. If I have no idea, then how can I address anything they say properly? Besides, there is no harm in educating ourselves, no matter what it is. Being ignorant can make someone believe things are false to be true, or conversely, things that are true they may believe are false, and that in turn can lead to bad decisions and as a consequence a host of other undesirable things. So I don't think anyone is trying to sidetrack or smokescreen. On the contrary, these kind of conversations help to establish facts. No one knows everything, so although you say you are uneducated, you probably know a host of things others don't. I wouldn't say I am educated, but I do have a thirst for knowledge, and I crave facts Of course a Christian's prime focus should be in gaining accurate knowledge about God and his purpose. That's a given.
  37. 4 points
    JW Insider

    In Defense of Shunning

    Expelling is Biblical. That's true. But what is the method and are Christians under some kind of rule of law that needs to be applied uniformly in all situations? What if it was a principle that is good, but the way it was executed even in Bible times turns out not to have been a Christian method. For example, the Bible allows for a husband to disfellowship his wife. (The Bible never allows for a wife to disfellowship (divorce) a husband, by the way.) But are we under Mosaic rules for divorce just because it is Biblical? In fact, Jesus said that even though it was Biblical, it wasn't what Jehovah really wanted. (Matthew 19:7, 8 ) 7 They said to him: “Why, then, did Moses direct giving a certificate of dismissal and divorcing her?” 8 He said to them: “Out of regard for your hard-heartedness, Moses made the concession to you of divorcing your wives, but that has not been the case from the beginning. Jesus doesn't say Moses wasn't inspired when he made the Biblical concession for divorce as one of the laws in the "perfect" Law covenant. But Jesus rejects this particular "jot and tittle" of the Law as a mere concession for human hard-heartedness, especially because it was being misused in practice. "Hard-heartedness" is a form of having "no natural affection." (See my earlier post on this topic.) There is an even more obvious case where the Governing Body now rejects something that is definitely Biblical. In the Bible, it's OK to "beat" your children, physically. When asked about this, GB member Geoffrey Jackson, in front of the Australian Royal Commission, said that the GB now believe that the "rod" of correction is not a physical rod, but that it is the "virtual" rod of righteous corrective discipline. Of course, what do we then do with the Mosaic Law that says that if you beat your slave to death that there is no punishment as long as it takes the slave a day or two to die? (There is a punishment if the slave dies within in a shorter time period.) (Exodus 21:20, 21) . . .“If a man strikes his slave man or his slave girl with a stick and that one dies by his hand, that one must be avenged. 21 However, if he survives for one or two days, he is not to be avenged, because he is someone bought with his owner’s money. The way in which the point was made in front of the ARC was for the GB member to avoid this Scripture: (Proverbs 23:13, 14) 13 Do not hold back discipline from the mere boy. In case you beat him with the rod, he will not die. 14 With the rod you yourself should beat him, that you may deliver his very soul from Sheʹol itself. Instead, he used another verse, from the previous chapter, which was more ambiguous: (Proverbs 22:15) 15 Foolishness is tied up with the heart of a boy; the rod of discipline is what will remove it far from him. Of course, all of these verses use the same Hebrew word for "rod/stick" and the same Hebrew word for "beat/smite/strike." Same word for "rod" or "stick" is used here too: (Proverbs 26:3) 3 A whip is for the horse, a bridle is for the ass, and the rod is for the back of stupid people. I'm not in favor of the physical beating of children. There are times when the principle is correct, but the methods used were "hard-hearted." The Governing Body says we have updated our understanding to that of the world here, and I think everyone knows that Brother Jackson is not so stupid as to think that the Bible was not really referring to physical beatings with these Hebrew expressions. It's time we progressed in our understanding of what it means to disfellowship, too. You've argued that other religions see familial DFing, for example, as Biblical. But so what? In other religions they might still beat their children, beat their wives and servants, promote racism, divorce on any ground, and promote a lack natural affection, too.
  38. 4 points
    I've used this argument at the door and with Bible studies, too: that supposedly Christians, even if they claim they are not worshiping the item, should still find it wrong to carry around a model of the "murder weapon" that killed Jesus Christ! I've even heard the additional example from other Witnesses, such as: "If your own father had been murdered with an AK-47, or a .38 revolver, would you ever think about carrying around a small model of an AK-47, or a .38 revolver, on a chain around your neck?" Of course, this seemed quite fair until I learned that a member of the Governing Body who had worn a cross in the past, remembered that it was the way in which they felt they were showing their agreement with the idea in Mark: (Mark 8:34) . . .“If anyone wants to come after me, let him disown himself and pick up his [STAUROS] and follow me continually." It was the Bible that treated the STAUROS as a "symbol." And we would never have complained that Jesus was saying (Mark 8:34) . . .“If anyone wants to come after me, let him disown himself and pick up his [MURDER WEAPON] and follow me continually." Similarly, the apostle Paul would have been saying: (1 Corinthians 2:2) For I decided not to know anything among you except Jesus Christ, and [his MURDER WEAPON]. Jesus and Paul knew that the STAUROS (whether cross or stake) was a proper symbol that could remind us of Christ's sacrifice, and it would remind us of our own need for daily sacrifice, and even a similar sacrifice to the death if need be. But this is not an external symbol like baptism by which we show we have dedicated our lives to God and associate ourselves with Christians of like faith. For we walk by faith and not by sight, and need no ongoing piece of jewelry to state our Christian status.
  39. 4 points
    Before I was baptized I thought that you can always question every JW doctrine and that the Watchtower will always have scripturaly based answers for their doctrines. So I felt safe to be baptized. But I did not know that after you are baptized you have no more right to question the truthfulness of any doctine. And if you don't understand their explanation you have to comply anyway. If I had known that the WT-organization works like that, I doubt I had been baptized. To the contrary I heard the circuit overseer explain how honest and sincere the WT organization is. He claimed in a speech that if a person finds a fault in WT doctine and can show it from the Bible, then absolutely the WT organization will change the doctrine. It was with this mind I was baptized. But it became evident that that is not how the WT org works. When I had found scriptural evidence against some WT doctrines I wanted to show my elders. They came to my place, but they refused to look at my findings. They refused to look at the scriptures I wanted to show them. They were not going to examine the scriptures. I was amazed, what was going on? Now I understand that elders act according to WT procedures. They don't think about what is right or true. The only thing that matters to them is to obey the GB. The Bible and the truth comes always on the second place. That is the moment when the truth has ceased to be the truth. Actually the elders even openly at the meerings said that the unity is more important than the truth. They justify that with saying that Jehovah will anyway later correct everything. But where will the elders and GB be when Jehovah corrects what it wrong? They might as well find themselves in trouble. As Bible-history shows, those who opposed truth tellers in the past got in trouble.
  40. 4 points
    Hi folks. Just breezing through. I've not dropped off the end of the earth - I'm just *really* busy. Got a notification on my email saying the Librarian wanted to know if Leolaia's excellent article "Jehovah's Witnesses and the Cross" was still available. The previous link is now dead, apparently. Try here:
      Hello guest!
    Glad to see these discussions are still going. Hi and bye
  41. 4 points
    That is an EXTREMELY good example .... that fact rock solid hard evidence, not agenda based fluffery and fuzzy thinking! I am as critical of all the crap going on as anybody here is ... and probably know as much or more than most well educated people about such things .... but I have learned through interactions with MANY kinds of "organizations", not to expect too much from people in groups. The example I most often recall to mind is this: If you understand the Mission of the United States Marines, and their necessity in the real world to defend what is honorable, true and righteous ( ... in a very limited absolute sense ...), then for some, that mission was what you were born to do .... be a "Sheepdog", with fangs and claws ... to be the "point of the spear", to protect your fellow sheep ... who are many times scared of you. It entails willingness to die, or live the rest of your life mangled and broken. That's what the job IS. But as the "Peter Principle", a VERY famous business principle states (paraphrased) "Everyone rises in rank to their own level of incompetency". You could be a very good Marine Sargent, and rise to be an incompetent Marine Lieutenant, etc., ad infinitum. A committee is a peculiar life form with at least six legs, and no brain. This is ESPECIALLY true in fuzzy subjects such as Theology, where everyone is jousting for favor and position with God, and gets used to great piles of free money .... considering it their due. The Governing Body is NOT the exception, and they have 16 legs. This is ESPECIALLY true with anyone claiming to speak for God, whether it is kissing the Pope's ring, or admiring the Governing Body's Rolex watches and gold pinkie rings. When you begin to live like Kings, that vow of poverty becomes irrelevant. That bears repeating, over and over ... as there is a VERY important core principle embedded in that innocuous rock solid and true observation. I personally fully understand that, and though I sigh and cry over all the unnecessary burdens and smelly crap we have to carry ... that I personally have been expected to carry over the years ... and silly irrelevant drivel we are expected to swallow, hook-line-and-sinker ... I still want to be a "Marine" .... just not an Officer. The biggest problem we have ... is HAVING to recruit from deeply flawed but presumably well intentioned humans. .... sigh. ... so does the United States Marines ... and THEY have rifles.
  42. 4 points
    Interesting stuff, especially the difference between Chi Rho and Tau Rho. Howeve,r he states: "2)............the earliest uses of the tau-rho are not as such free-standing symbols, but form part of a special way of writing the Greek words for “cross” (stauros) and “crucify” (stauro-o), in NT texts which refer to the crucifixion of Jesus. 3) The tau-rho is not an allusion to the word “christos“. Indeed, the letters have no relation to any terms in early Christian vocabulary. Instead, the device (adapted from pre-Christian usage) seems to have served originally as a kind of pictographic representation of the crucified Jesus, the loop of the rho superimposed on the tau serving to depict the head of a figure on a cross. 4) So, contra the common assumption taught in art history courses, the earliest visual reference to the crucified Jesus isn’t 5th century intaglia, but this scribal device employed by ca. 200 CE. There's no denying that this scribal device is employed in some early Greek Scripture manuscripts. How early? With occurences, for example, at Luke 9:23; 14:27, P75 of the Bodmer Papyrii (imaged earlier) was originally dated as 175-200CE,. This early assignment has been recently challenged, where some favour a later date closer to the 4th Century. Other evidences, such as Chester Beatty's P45 manuscript is dated about 250CE, and contains this device at Matt.26:2 and also Luke 14:27. A further papyrus in the Bodmer colllection, P66, contains the staurogram in at least ten places in the papyrus (corresponding to chapter 19 of John's Gospel. Like P75, this papyrus is subject to similar discussion on it's antiquity, being more recently proposed as originating "in the early or middle part of the fourth century." So, basically, we have a scribal insertion of a contemporary "Christian " symbol some 135-300 years after the establishing of the Christian congregation at Pentecost 33CE . However, a disturbing comment is made regarding the staurogram on the Bible History Today page cited in the earlier post by @JWInsider at
      Hello guest!
    : "The tau-rho staurogram, like other christograms, was originally a pre-Christian symbol. A Herodian coin featuring the Staurogram predates the crucifixion. Soon after, Christian adoption of staurogram symbols served as the first visual images of Jesus on the cross." Larry Hurtado confirms this when discussing the Tau-Rho among other "Christian" symbols as he states: "these are all pre-Christian devices and were appropriated by early Christians." He also says "P45, P66 and P75 offer us evidence of a Christian appropriation of the tau-rho device that (whatever and whenever its origin) was already becoming familiar in Christian circles at the time that these copyists worked." (Quotes from The Staurogram in Early Christian Manuscripts: The Earliest Visual Reference to the Crucified Jesus?) Reference is made to Herodian coins issued about 37 BCE where the Tau Rho appears (apparently as some sort of date code?) , Jack Finegan, (The Archaeology of the New Testament. 1969) is referenced by Hurtado. In his book section The Cross. Abbreviations and Monograms, among other things, he cited Egyptian influences on the development and use of the Staurogram, likening it to the Egyptian ankh, a symbol of life. He presents an memorial inscription from a 4th Century tomb at Armant near Luxor on the NIle. Here the staurogram symbol is presented on the bottom 3rd right in line with the ankh and the Chi Rho symbol, (another "christogram). An additional aspect is the proposed influence of the use of isosephy in formulating the staurogram. This practice, known also as gematria, seeks to find numeric relationships in words and concepts by assigning numeric values to letters and thus to words, then looking for parrallel meanings. An attempt is made to equate this to the reckoning of the wild beast's number of 666 in Rev.13:18. "Christian" Isosephists equate this number to the value determined for the name "Nero", their interpretation then misinterpreting the scripture. The staurogram is thus said by some to have a mystical significance in this regard. The whole practice has a ring of divination about it. Although Hurtado does not promote this view, it is not rejected as a contributory factor. Whilst interesting and formidably detailed, these speculations on the early uses of staurogram symbols are not very convincing as to their relevance to genuine Christianity. It just cannot be that difficult to find the truth, if it is actually there. It seems that an early date for the use of these symbols as some propose is not clear at all, as the relevant papyrii whilst significantly old, are of disputed antiquity. There appears to be a pagan and superstitious influence at work in the appropriation of these symbols, for obscure reasons. It is clear from scripture that definite attempts to distort and corrupt the true Christian faith were well under way from earliest times, prior to the adoption of the "staurogram". Paul warns that "the mystery of this lawlessness is already at work", Peter warns that "the ignorant and unstable are twisting the...Scriptures", and John warns that "even now, many antichrists have appeared". (Before we even get to Rev. Ch.2-3). The scriptures have no word for cross as such. Both stauros and xylon are simple words to understand, as is the background for the necessity of the use of this method for Christ's execution. There is no definitive way to conclude the exact nature of the instrument of Christ's death. The existence of the dispute complicates and obscures the very reason for Christ's sacrifice, a paucity of understanding on this matter being a prominent feature of many two-beamed cross promoters. On that basis, I remain satisfied with the scriptural description as far as it goes, and the conclusion we draw on the likelihood of a single stake being the instrument of Christ's death. I will not be adding an extra beam to the account at this stage. ?
  43. 4 points
    According to the record from the Watchtower Society itself, this is about right, if you don't count some interim corrections to typos, page headings, and grammar inconsistencies. (These are minor, but there have been at least 16 additional versions if you count these minor printing updates.) For example the original NWT of Psalms in the 1963 and 1964 "Fat Boy" NWT had a big bold typo (Psalm 17 was marked as Psalm 71). The large print (bi8) printed in 1971 had some typos, such as switching the font of the verse number itself from regular to bold and back to regular --most noticeable in Hebrews 9:27 where the 2 is bold and the 7 is regular, and even a couple of subject-verb agreement errors that were fixed up until 1984, well before the 2013 Revised came out. When the 2013 came out a heading on a page 267 was wrong, Psalm 51:4 was changed, and there were still some inconsistencies with capitalization and usage. Here's one example with the capitalization of "Ark" [of the Testimony]. Exodus 25:22 still has one remaining inconsistency: (Exodus 25:16-22) 16 You will place in the Ark the Testimony that I will give you. 17 “You will make a cover of pure gold, two and a half cubits long and a cubit and a half wide. 18 You are to make two cherubs of gold; you will make them of hammered work on the two ends of the cover. 19 Make the cherubs on the two ends, one cherub on each end of the cover. 20 The cherubs are to spread out their two wings upward, overshadowing the cover with their wings, and they will face each other. The faces of the cherubs will be turned toward the cover. 21 You will put the cover on the Ark, and in the Ark you will place the Testimony that I will give you. 22 I will present myself to you there and speak with you from above the cover. From between the two cherubs that are on the ark of the Testimony, I will make known to you all that I will command you for the Israelites. (2013 NWT) Exodus 25:22 (1972 bi8) . . . the two cherubs that are upon the ark of the testimony . . . (1972-1984) Exodus 25:16 And you must place in the Ark the testimony that I shall give you. (1984) Note that in 2013 every instance of "the Ark" is capitalized except this one in verse 22. Also verse 10 does NOT capitalize it in 2013, but did capitalize it in 1984. And you can see above, in verse 16, that Ark was capitalized in 1984, but in no places was testimony ever capitalized. As far back as the 1953-1961 versions of the NWT, "Testimony" was capitalized, but "ark of the testimony" was not always, even in the same context, or sometimes just Ark and not testimony: (Numbers 7:89) he would hear the voice conversing with him from above the cover which was upon the Ark of the testimony, from between the two cherubs [upon the cover].” (1953) (Exodus 16:33,34) Moses said to Aaron: ‘Take a jar and put in it an omerful of manna and deposit it before Jehovah as something to be kept throughout your generations.’ Just as Jehovah had commanded Moses, Aaron proceeded to deposit it before the Testimony as something to be kept. (1953) (Num. 17:10) Subsequently Jehovah said to Moses: "Put Aaron’s rod back before the Testimony as something to be kept for a sign to the sons of rebelliousness, that their murmurings may cease from against me, that they may not die." (1953) Also note that in Deuteronomy, the term "ark of the testimony" is never used; it's always "ark of the covenant," (a different Hebrew word) but this doesn't ever get capitalized in any NWT of any date. (There are exceptions in quotes from the Watchtower in the 1950's, 1960, and 1976, but not in the NWT itself. ["ark of the covenant" "Ark of the covenant" or "Ark of the Covenant".] Of the hundred or so references, there has been no capitalization since the 1970's.) (Deuteronomy 31:26) “Take this book of the Law and place it at the side of the ark of the covenant of Jehovah your God. . . (2013) (Deuteronomy 31:26) “Taking this book of the Law, YOU must place it at the side of the ark of the covenant of Jehovah your God. (1960-1984) In fact, between 1961 and 1964, there were literally hundreds of pages that needed re-pagination along with the page headings, dozens of footnotes with the wrong J-references, cross-references, footnote letters skipped, wrong hyphenation breaks, a couple of misspellings, mismatched single/double quote marks, and at least a couple of grammar changes. There is some evidence of these changes in one of my "Fat Boy" Bibles where you can see that certain pages were updated, and these resulted in a brighter light-green edging on the updated pages (which includes Psalm 17, of course). See the pictures below:
  44. 4 points
    I think this point showed excellent insight. I wondered if this is what you meant from the start. The very context shows that the type of leadership in this case is more like the local elders rather than the far-away GB: (Hebrews 13:7) . . .Remember those who are taking the lead among you, who have spoken the word of God to you, and as you contemplate how their conduct turns out, imitate their faith. However, I wouldn't get too hung up on variations in translations, or changes from one NWT to a newer version. As JWs, we are always happy to quote other translations that support our view of Scriptures. There are always several different ways to translate something and it doesn't mean that one is right and one is wrong. They could both be right. Often there are two ways to say the exact same thing. Often there are slight differences, and sometimes larger differences in meaning, and a translator is obligated to take an educated guess. The "nakedness" vs "lacking clothing" discussion is an example of that. The word for nakedness in the original Greek is "gymnos." (Strong's Greek #1131) It's the same word from which we get "gymnasium" because sports in the Greek/Roman world were often performed naked (and sometimes nearly so). This reminds me that I gave a funeral talk in Manhattan in 2013 on the day of the Annual Meeting, and the elder from Bethel (Patterson) who was supposed to give the talk had to leave early for his seat in Jersey City. I already had a copy of the NWT 2013 Revised on PDF, and was under strict orders not to share this fact with anyone, not even my wife. But I cheated a bit. The funeral was attended by a lot of her "worldly" neighbors in addition to brothers and sisters. She had been well-known as a Dorcas-like sister who actually had bought me a new warm coat when I first came to Bethel in 1976. I wanted to use the example in James 2:15, but I always hated the fact that it said "naked" there, and I especially didn't want to read it that way in front of non-Witnesses: (James 2:15-16) 15 If a brother or a sister is in a naked state and lacking the food sufficient for the day, 16 yet a certain one of YOU says to them: “Go in peace, keep warm and well fed,” but YOU do not give them the necessities for [their] body, of what benefit is it? So I used the 2013 NWT Revised, against orders, but no one called me out on it. Because no one else should have known anyway. Besides, the new Bible was to be released in just a few hours: (James 2:15, 16) 15 If a brother or a sister is lacking clothing and enough food for the day, 16 yet one of you says to them, “Go in peace; keep warm and well fed,” but you do not give them what they need for their body, of what benefit is it? The first is actually a little more accurate from a literal point of view. But the second is probably more accurate from a practical point of view, as it's hard to imagine someone coming into the KH completely naked. The word "torture stake" vs "stake" is a good point. One is for understanding and the other more literal. A better example might be the word "impaled" which was completely wrong in its most common connotations. That was fixed in 2013. Some other points are still questionable, and the translators might still wonder whether they may have had a better choice in the old version of the NWT. Here's an example, I wanted to share earlier when discussion the term "illiterate" with @Outta Here so I'll use this excuse to bring it up now: (John 7:15) 15 Therefore the Jews fell to wondering, saying: “How does this man have a knowledge of letters, when he has not studied at the schools?” (pre-2013 NWT) (John 7:15) 15 And the Jews were astonished, saying: “How does this man have such a knowledge of the Scriptures when he has not studied at the schools?” (2013 NWT) The older version could be saying something specific about literacy, where the second is referring to knowledge of Scripture itself.
  45. 4 points
    Thank you JW Insider, for providing absolute proof. BillyTheKid46 would deny the existence of a car if it ran over his foot, because all his friends don't believe cars were ever invented. I was there .... and as you know, there are literally whole CHAPTERS on this subject that have been posted in the past seven or so years, here on the Archive. Any idea if it is possible to download the whole archive, since the beginning, to a large USB 4 TB hard drive? It might come in handy to have some off-site copies, since the format and such has changed so many times... I am having trouble keeping track of my cartoon and meme collection. Thanks for the "heavy lifting".
  46. 4 points
    Bill Nye is more of a "promoter" than a scientist. He definitely does not belong in the same category as Richard Feynman. I've read two of Feynman's books and they are really good, and reflect true science. I loved "What do you care what other people think?" because it draws non-scientists into his world. Echos of your doppelgangers here. They always have said the same thing about the 1975 fiasco. It's true that no Watchtower literature ever contained a prediction that Armageddon would arrive in 1975. The point was that at some time in the 1970's we should expect Armageddon to be no further than a matter of months, not years, away. *** km 9/73 p. 1 par. 4 Intensive Tract Distribution *** Why is the distribution being done in such an intensive manner? Because of the impact that this will have on the public. People talk to one another, and they will soon realize that nearly everyone they know was served with the same urgent message. This will make a far deeper impression than would a gradual distribution over many months. Furthermore, we realize that the time remaining for this wicked world is greatly reduced. Opportunity for people to learn the truth and take their stand on Jehovah’s side is fast running out. *** km 5/74 p. 3 How Are You Using Your Life? *** Yes, since the summer of 1973 there have been new peaks in pioneers every month. Now there are 20,394 regular and special pioneers in the United States, an all-time peak. That is 5,190 more than there were in February 1973! A 34-percent increase! Does that not warm our hearts? Reports are heard of brothers selling their homes and property and planning to finish out the rest of their days in this old system in the pioneer service. Certainly this is a fine way to spend the short time remaining before the wicked world’s end. I started regular pioneering in the summer of 1973 and quit school even though I was technically still 15 years old, turning 16 before the next school year. I have to admit, it felt good being one of those statistics. My parents then, as a favor, sold our time-consuming farm worth about $50,000 (1974) at the time for only $10,000 to a brother and moved us all into the city. The brother we sold it to broke up the old farm acres into several subdivisions, got power and septic tanks to all the lots, and probably made a million dollars by now. He's no longer a Witness (and recently died too) but several Witness families still live on those acres. And of course, quitting high school at age 15 was not just recommended by circuit overseers. It was the subtext of the following prophecy made in Watch Tower publications in 1969, preparing us for "What Will the 1970s Bring?": **g69 5/22 p.15 "If you are a young person, you also need to face the fact that you will never grow old in this present system of things. Why not? Because all the evidence in fulfillment of Bible prophecy indicates that this corrupt system is due to end in a few years. . . . . Therefore, as a young person, you will never fulfill any career that this system offers. If you are in high school and thinking about a college education, it means at least four, perhaps even six or eight more years to graduate into a specialized career. But where will this system of things be by that time? It will be well on the way toward its finish, if not actually gone!" Awake!1969 May 22 p.15 And all of it was based on a totally unbiblical belief that each of the 7 creative days were 7,000 years in length, which supposedly made it significant that we were evidently coming up on then being 6,000 years into that seventh day. Why ever bring up the 6,000 years since Adam if we weren't pushing its supposed but unbiblical significance? *** w68 8/15 p. 499 pars. 29-30 Why Are You Looking Forward to 1975? *** That means, in the fall of the year 1975, a little over seven years from now (and not in 1997 as would be the case if Ussher’s figures were correct), it will be 6,000 years since the creation of Adam, the father of all mankind! Are we to assume from this study that the battle of Armageddon will be all over by the autumn of 1975, and the long-looked-for thousand-year reign of Christ will begin by then? Possibly, but we wait to see how closely the seventh thousand-year period of man’s existence coincides with the sabbathlike thousand-year reign of Christ. If these two periods run parallel with each other as to the calendar year, it will not be by mere chance or accident but will be according to Jehovah’s loving and timely purposes. Our chronology, however, which is reasonably accurate (but admittedly not infallible), at the best only points to the autumn of 1975 as the end of 6,000 years of man’s existence on earth. It does not necessarily mean that 1975 marks the end of the first 6,000 years of Jehovah’s seventh creative “day.” Why not? Because after his creation Adam lived some time during the “sixth day,” which unknown amount of time would need to be subtracted from Adam’s 930 years, to determine when the sixth seven-thousand-year period or “day” ended, and how long Adam lived into the “seventh day.” And yet the end of that sixth creative “day” could end within the same Gregorian calendar year of Adam’s creation. It may involve only a difference of weeks or months, not years. Then of course, in 1972 and 1973 the Watchtower promoted the "Ezekiel" book and other publications with the statement that the faithful and discreet slave was a prophet. Not just a "prophet" with quotes around it, but literally, a prophet. This was not very different from statements like this one in 1924 referring to Rutherford and another like him: *** g1924 p.149 *** " . . . Judge Rutherford is permeated with the real Biblical and prophetic spirit, ceases not in his discourse to defy the devil and throw (morally) an inkwell into his face, as the deceased Luther did. . . . This year 1924 is worse than 1914."
  47. 4 points
    Further to all the earlier postings and your original point. Yes, I can see what you mean. In the context of Paul's words having been written prior to John's writings, and to the consensus on what constituted the canon of the Christian Greek Scriptures, then, yes, Paul's statement might be viewed as a mini-prophecy as you state. However, it is entirely unlikely that Paul meant specifically that his words should be understood that way. Rather, the purpose of his writing was to instruct Timothy in what should form the basis for his own faith and that which he would teach to others, namely "the holy writings", or "All Scripture", as opposed to the ear-tickling teachings he refers to at 2 Tim.4:3. He may well have had in mind at this time the coming conclusions to be made regarding his own writings, as well as the other completed letters and gospels, especially in view of the spiritual gifts he undoubtedly enjoyed. Also, as the book of Revelation confirms, further written communication is to be expected from Jehovah, so it seems unlikely that Paul felt the "All" was done in his day. In fact more likely that what was to be termed "All" would be expanded. There is prudence in terming the holy writings as "All Scripture". If he had said the "Jewish Scriptures", or some other time-rooted descriptor, then there would have been room for dispute over what constituted those writings, perhaps falling into the hands of the Judaizers, or some other apostatisers and their time-wasting definition debates. This is, however a hindsight observation of practicality of expression, not unlike the embedded wisdom we can now see in the injunction to "cleanse ourselves of every defilement of flesh and spirit", which circumvents the need for listing every possible combination of the same. ?
  48. 4 points
    You are doing a great deal of work in rummaging through archives of old material like this. I hope you realise that the time and effort and expense that you are putting in to this, like all the others so engaged, is actually only providing us with some entertainment? It is only fair to point this out in case you thought you were accomplishing something else more serious. But given that, carry on please. When there is time to read through these old ideas, it provides a light diversion from the more serious business of living, and indeed, saves some valuable time in avoiding the necessity for doing the same thing twice.
  49. 4 points
    I think that hits the point exactly. The elders, especially during previous years, were directly taught at KM school (Elder Training) that the first time that there is suspicion of two persons of the opposite sex spending hours of time alone together, that there should be some kind of very strong counsel and even sanction due to the appearance alone, even if the elders were convinced that they were innocent of loose conduct. It was the same at Bethel, because there was a rule against being alone with a sister in your room unless the door was open, this meant that as soon as the door was closed, there should be strong counsel and even sanction. I knew that the rule was often broken, and I think that very few would turn someone else in, yet multiple infractions of the rule could mean dismissal. If a couple of the opposite sex ever were seen to have contrived to be alone together, it was simply assumed that they went too far in their conduct with one another. The elder training gave examples of appropriate questions to ask, even if it was not overnight, and these questions assumed the worst, and would try to draw out a confession of "loose conduct." There would be a probation or loss of privileges of some kind, even if both vehemently denied any misconduct. If the time spent together appeared contrived, and was overnight, especially if reported by a third party who saw a car parked overnight in front of the other person's house, then the assumption was always that fornication had occurred and that any denial means the two are lying. The types of questions to be asked gave away the assumption of immorality and dishonesty. If they had previously been counseled, this could immediately escalate to disfellowshipping. Having been raised in the truth, and having gone to school in Missouri, I didn't realize until I went to college that many of our assumptions were similar to many of the fundamentalists around us. It wasn't just JWs but most old-time religionists, assuming that leaving two persons of the opposite sex alone together was always an instant recipe for fornication and/or adultery. If you listened to radio preachers you'd hear the same assumptions. Witnesses were also assuming that there was nothing else that young people could possibly be interested in. It wasn't until after Bethel when I went to college that I realized that many persons were immoral, but also that many had morals likely superior to ours. And most surprisingly that many persons of the opposite sex actually lived together as roommates and still didn't ever worry about the topic of sex/fornication ever coming up. Now, I have seen statistics that show that teenage pregnancies were always much higher in the "Bible Belt." Perhaps part of the problem was in the assumption that young people have nothing better to do.
  50. 4 points
    He tends to focus on the religious clubs. This was a post in the secular part of the website.... I have noticed but don't really care as much as he does if people go off on crazy topics completely unrelated to anything. I blame this on our infrastructure not allowing threaded replies. Maybe someday forums will grow up and learn from social media.  .... oh wait I'm sure there is already a thread about this in here somewhere. Ooops

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