Jump to content

Leaderboard


Popular Content

Showing content with the highest reputation since 03/03/2019 in all areas

  1. 7 points
    Of course, there was that "God-damned" snake in the grass back in Eden. It was cursed to crawl on the ground and lick the dust with its [forked] tongue. Then there were those pigs that allowed themselves to be possessed by demons, and were driven to commit suicide. Certain animals might have listened to communication from God to be able to receive a name from Adam. The same could be said for the animals that listened to communication from God to get on Noah's ark. Or for ravens to find Elijah to bring him food. Or, perhaps even a big fish who nearly snacked on Jonah. And there's that special relationship between Jehovah and Leviathan and Behemoth. God gives animals "meat in due season" (food at the proper time): (Psalm 104:27) . . .All of them wait for you To give them their food in its season. And a donkey evidently saved a man's life by ascertaining an invisible angel. On a serious note, I think most people agree that many persons have an unbalanced view of pets. But it's also easy to get unbalanced in the direction of disdaining pets and animals. Remember that Jehovah himself rejoices at his works which obviously includes his many interactions with animals according to the context of Psalm 104. (Psalm 104:28-31) . . .What you give them, they gather. When you open your hand, they are satisfied with good things. 29 When you hide your face, they are disturbed. If you take away their spirit, they die and return to the dust. 30 If you send out your spirit, they are created, And you renew the surface of the ground. 31 The glory of Jehovah will last forever. Jehovah will rejoice in his works.
  2. 7 points
    Here is the weekly material for the next 2 weeks July 8-14 and July 15-21, 2019. TB MEETING WORKBOOK week of July 8-14 , 2019 text only.doc MEETING WORKBOOK week of July 8-14 , 2019 text only.pdf MEETING WORKBOOK week of July 8-14 , 2019.doc MEETING WORKBOOK week of July 8-14 , 2019.pdf Watchtower July 8-14, 2019.doc Watchtower July 8-14, 2019.pdf Additional Highlights - July 8-14, 2019.doc Additional Highlights - July 8-14, 2019.pdf CBS July 8-14, 2019.doc CBS July 8-14, 2019.pdf CBS July 15-21, 2019.pdf CBS July 15-21, 2019.doc Additional Highlights -July 15-21.pdf Additional Highlights -July 15-21.doc Watchtower July 15-21, 2019.pdf Watchtower July 15-21, 2019.doc MEETING WORKBOOK week ofJuly 15-21, 2019.pdf MEETING WORKBOOK week ofJuly 15-21, 2019.doc MEETING WORKBOOK week ofJuly 15-21, 2019 text only.pdf MEETING WORKBOOK week ofJuly 15-21, 2019 text only.doc
  3. 6 points
    Next week DV I will know, and will tell you. Maybe this time your children will learn something that will show them the need to visit more often and to process information so they practice godly devotion more fully which includes checking on your parents. (mentioned somewhere in 1 Timothy.) Work in progress.
  4. 6 points
    Law of diminishing returns is also a fundamental principle in Economics, not only Engineering. And you talking money already. But remember you go to meeting every week and you don't necessarily learn anything new, it costs clothes, gas, tyres, road tax, etc. The Convention is just a bigger meeting. You don't complain for regular meeting, so why complain for a more exciting, bigger meeting, even if you are eating ordinary spiritual food served in prettier plates or settings. Where did you meet your wife? Put yourself in the place of those who are new to the spiritual food, are now meeting other Witnesses/Christians or are even looking for mates, all these are normal things Jesus mentioned in Matthew 24. But he said some would take no note of the spiritual things until they are swept away. So what can you/I do to show more appreciation for what may begin to look ordinary? Form a longing for the ordinary food (milk) - it is necessary to grow from infancy to maturity both literally and spiritually; it will help you to grow to salvation. You know a year in advance and you prepare with anticipation. When it comes you show appreciation. I already have three sets of clothes put out and a bag packed. My convention is next week. I got my lapel card today. (1 Peter 2:2) "As newborn infants, form a longing for the unadulterated milk of the word, so that by means of it you may grow to salvation," Even if we really knew everything that we need to know, we are all works in progress, we need to work on what we know. There is always room for improvement in putting on the complete suit of armour and the new personality; in setting spiritual goals. (Ephesians 4:23, 24) And you should continue to be made new in your dominant mental attitude, 24 and should put on the new personality that was created according to God’s will in true righteousness and loyalty. Always remember that the Israelites complained about the manna, then God send the bird with lots of flesh and while they were still eating they were punished. (Someone can enlarge on the reasons why he gave them meat and then punished them.) (Numbers 11:31-34) 31 Then a wind from Jehovah sprang up and began driving quail from the sea and causing them to fall around the camp, about a day’s journey on this side and a day’s journey on the other side, all around the camp, and they were about two cubits deep on the ground. 32 So all that day and all night and all the next day, the people stayed up and gathered the quail. No one gathered less than ten hoʹmers, and they kept spreading them all around the camp for themselves. 33 But while the meat was still between their teeth, before it could be chewed, Jehovah’s anger blazed against the people, and Jehovah began striking the people with a very great slaughter. 34 So they gave that place the name Kibʹroth-hat·taʹa·vah, because there they buried the people who showed selfish craving. Let's appreciate the spiritual manna. Fancy a dish prepared by God himself and people were complaining about it! If we were starving and someone gave us plain rice and water, it would help us to survive, though it might not satisfy us completely. While we are excited about new information, we still need the milk of the word as it would help us to live to salvation. It would help us renew our goals, remind us of what we already know, and keep us on the path to salvation as the apostle Peter said. We need manna and milk to live, grow and mature. People would be there who are at different stages of Christian development; some still need milk, some would be there who need solid food, some would be there who need the deeper things of God to satisfy them, but we all need spiritual food. "Happy are those conscious of their spiritual need". Matt 5:3. If and when we get into the Kingdom of God, we will be learning about love forever, as there will always be Jehovah, Jesus, and people to love. Love (Agape) never fails. (1 Cor 13:8)
  5. 6 points
    Whenever a new version of Scripture appears that is colloquialized, paraphrased, or just plain dumbed down, the refrain is heard: “If it gets modern people to read God’s Word, it is worth it.” How far you want to take this trend is anyone’s guess. Suffice it to say that the Sinaiticus Sheepngoats pushes the boundaries as they have never been pushed before. It is an incredible find from the dry desert where it has been preserved for thousands of years. (though there are a few critics at the Whitepebble Institute who claim it has only been around two weeks and was discovered in the glove box of Harley’s car) And yet—and yet—though it takes outrageous liberties and outright manufactures a few things, it does serve to convey the basic idea of the entire Book of Galatians. Is it right to spoil the book for everyone else in the course of getting a good grasp of it yourself? Your guess is as good as mine. Anyway, here is the text of the Sinaiticus Sheepngoats edition of Galatians: Chapter 1 Dear Galatians: Hi. Remember me? It’s Paul. How are you? (1:1-5) The reason I say ‘remember me’ is because I’m not sure that you do! I can’t believe how quickly you are screwing up! Is that chair I used to sit in even cold yet? What is this about louts trying to change the whole narrative? They’re not allowed to do that! Look, even angels are not allowed to do that! (6-9) You remember what a jerk I was. Nobody made more trouble for you than me. But after God let me hear about it right there on the Damascus road and that other fellow was sent so that I could see again, I went off to Arabia for three years to think about it. (13-17) Then I came back to Jerusalem and stayed with Peter for a couple of weeks. But no one else—wait, I did see James, but none of the others. Then I went off again. What! You think I am fibbing? For years and years, had you asked those apostles about me, they would have said, “I dunno. Your guess is as good as mine. He used to be the nastiest fellow. Now it looks as though he is on our side. Cool! We’ll take it!” (18-24) Chapter 2 About 14 years later I figured that maybe I had better give those guys a call. I had Barnabas with me by then, and Titus—fine fellows. I met with them privately, of course, just in case I was not doing something—um, kosher. “You okay with this?” I said to them. “You’re not going to make Titus do that Jewish thing, are you? I don’t see any need for it.” They didn’t either! (2:1-3) It probably wouldn’t even have come up were it not for those pinheaded louts trying to drag us down, wanting us to everything Jewish that we don’t have to do anymore. We blew right past them, and it was for your sake just as much as for ours. (4-5) Okay, so I consulted with these ones—I mean, I guess they are important. I wondered if they might try to rein me in, but no!—they said, “Whatever you are doing, keep on doing it. We’ll stick with preaching to Jews, but you—I mean, Peter unlocked that door for the nations, so go for it! Just don’t ignore the poor.” Sure, I can do that. (6-10) But then Peter came calling later on and suddenly he himself goes all Jewish on me. Oh, sure, he pals around with these new Gentile Christians easy enough, but when his buddies show up, he acts like he doesn’t know them. I said, “I don’t believe it! Here you are living the free life, telling others to be like that, and then the narrow-minded fuddy duddies show up and you get all scaredy cat? (11-14) Yeah, well he’s a good sort, but he goes a little weak at the knees sometimes. You don’t have to do any of that Jewish stuff! What do you think the Lord is for? (15-21) Chapter 3 What on earth is wrong with you? How can you be so dumb? You break free but then turn around and go back because you forgot your leg irons? Are you kidding me? (3:1-5) Don’t pull this Abraham stuff on me. Wait, no. If you want to talk Abraham, let’s talk Abraham. You think he earned anything? No! He “put faith in Jehovah, and it was counted to him as righteousness.” THAT’S what you want to take away from Abraham—his faith, and how he pointed the way for other people to have faith. Not the later Law—that Law did nothing but show you up for the basket cases that you were! Did you manage to keep it? No! All you did was screw up. That’s why when Christ comes along, you are supposed to say, “Exactly what we need! Thank you, thank you, thank you. (6-11) You don’t go back to the Law again—what’s wrong with you? The Law has nothing to do with faith. Christ pulled us out of that—THAT’S what Abraham was pointing to, and you want to dive back in again? (12-14) Okay, now look—let’s take this real slow. Take notes if it will help. So Abraham gets a promise that means the Christ will come through his lineup, but how does the Law figure in? It comes 430 years later. Does it change his promise? I don’t think so. (15-18) Why the Law? It’s because you guys kept messing up, that’s why. And it was supposed to dawn on you that you DID keep messing up and that you’re never (and yes—me, too) going to come out like the champion of Jeopardy. You weren’t supposed to think that dotting all the ‘I’s and crossing all the ‘T’s would get you there—besides, you missed lots of them. (19-22) Yes, it gave you something to do and kept you off the streets. But now that the real thing has arrived, you can set down your slates. Class is over. You can join in with that promise to Abraham. (23-29) Chapter 4 It took a long time for you to get to where you are. A lot of work went into it. Don’t mess it up. (4:1-8) You had real freedom. I mean, real freedom in Christ. And now you want to become law nerds again and focus on dotting ‘I’s and crossing ‘T’s? Really? What! Do I have a death wish or something? What am I doing this for? (9-11) Remember the good times we used to have? Remember how you used to loan me your specs? You didn’t then stick out your foot to trip me up. What’s gotten into you? (12-16) Do you think that these pinheaded louts are your friends? They just want to be your bosses. “Meet the new boss—same as the old boss.” (17-20) Go back to Abraham, you law nerds, and take a point. Two women, remember? One a concubine, one a wife. Hagar gave birth first because Sarah thought she was too old to have a child. No mystery about how Hagar conceived. You see it all the time on TV. But Sarah! THAT’S where God’s promise came in, and she didn’t even believe herself it could happen until it did! The two women stand for two groups of people. Hagar, the one of ordinary birth, is mother to the ones of Law (that you want go back to!) Sarah, the one of the promise, is mother to the ones putting their faith in Christ. (21-28) The Hagar kid made trouble for the Sarah kid back then. It’s the same today with these pinheaded louts trying to force their Law on you. But what does the verse say? “Take this Law and shove it! I ain’t workin here no more!” Keep it that way! (29-31) Chapter 5 You are free from slavery. Don’t go back to it. Or if you do, you’d better not miss a single one of those ‘I’s or ‘T’s. (5:1-6) You were doing so well. Who tripped you up? Who made you think you need circumcision? It ain’t me, babe. Those Jews would give me a free pass if they thought I was turning Christianity into just one of their outposts. “Just you wait, enry iggins”—they’ll get theirs. (7-11) In fact, I have half a mind to come and kick them in the nuts so hard that they won’t qualify to serve in the temple that they want to drag you into! (12) No, brothers, don’t go there. Just don’t. You don’t need their picayune Law. It all boils down to love anyway—that is the greatest part of it—so if you get you head around that, you’ll do just fine. You start nitpicking at each other over every pissy little thing and you’ll tear each other apart! (13-18) Don’t do bad things. Do good things. What do you mean, ‘What bad things?’ “No back-biting, no ass-grabbing, you know exactly what I mean!” [thank you, Randy Neuman] It shouldn’t be hard, if you really are following the Christ. Do the best you can, and don’t go thinking that you are better than the other guy. (19-26) Chapter 6 Okay, let’s wrap this up. Don’t be babies—man up, but pull each other out of the crud when you have to (be sure you don’t fall in yourself). (6:1-5) Don’t try to Play around with God. You can’t. Keep on keeping on—it will all pay off. Lend a hand where needed. (6-10) See the large letters I make, all by myself with my own hand? Why? Because I am blind as a bat—that’s why. I dunno—it comes and goes. That’s why I insulted that pompous character before I knew he was the high priest. I asked God to take it away, but he said, “Nah, it keeps you humble.” And it has. It’s not an altogether bad thing to have a thorn in the flesh. (11) Now, remember—they are pinheaded louts trying to lay their Law on you. And why? They’re just chicken themselves—like Peter might have been, but he saw where he was heading and corrected himself. They don’t want to stand out among their cronies, and they want to find strength in numbers by having you do what they do—it will hide their cowardice. What! You think they do the Law themselves? No way! They just want to do some back-stabbing and ass-grabbing themselves and then throw in a gerbil or something for sacrifice to make it all good again. Come on! Please—you are too smart not to see through them. (12-16) I’ve suffered for carrying the good news of the Christ. So have you. Don’t turn back to be a law nerd again. Press on ahead. God will back you. So will Christ. (17-18) *** What a bunch of idiots there at the Whitepebble Institute—tossing this amazing new manuscript in the dumpster! The place has gone right downhill ever since the director, Wayne Whitepebble, took a course on critical thinking and tried to kiss up to the evolutionists by adding an ancient skull to his library alongside the globe and old maps because he heard that is what smart people do but then it turned out that his ancient skull was actually missing evidence in the Mugsy McDougal ax murder case and he got into serious hot water with the authorities. Plainly, this new find belongs in the Bible canon.
  6. 5 points
    Here is the Weekly Material for August 19-25 and August 26–September 1, 2019. TB Watchtower August 19-25, 2019.pdf Watchtower August 19-25, 2019.doc MEETING WORKBOOK week of August 19-25 , 2019 text only.pdf MEETING WORKBOOK week of August 19-25 , 2019.doc MEETING WORKBOOK week of August 19-25 , 2019.pdf MEETING WORKBOOK week of August 19-25 , 2019 text only.doc CBS August 19-25, 2019.pdf CBS August 19-25, 2019.doc Additional Highlights -August 19-25, 2019.doc Additional Highlights -August 19-25, 2019.pdf Additional Highlights -December 31, 2018–January 6, 2019.doc Additional Highlights -August 26–September 1, 2019.pdf CBS August 26–September 1, 2019.pdf CBS August 26–September 1, 2019.doc MEETING WORKBOOK week of August 26–September 1 , 2019.doc MEETING WORKBOOK week of August 26–September 1 , 2019 text only.pdf MEETING WORKBOOK week of August 26–September 1 , 2019 text only.doc MEETING WORKBOOK week of August 26–September 1 , 2019.pdf Watchtower August 26, 2019–September 1, 2019.doc Watchtower August 26, 2019–September 1, 2019.pdf
  7. 5 points
    Any data that an organization keeps with respect to a policy or prior practice is always considered fair game in a lawsuit, because these lawsuits seek to find out whether the prior practice matched the stated "public policy." The claim, if one goes after an organization for damages, is that the practice has been different from the policy. For example, a particular city or jurisdiction claims that their policy is to always change the lead (Pb) pipes in all areas where the levels of lead reach a certain threshold, and they have kept data on all lead level complaints, and data on every area where they have changed pipes (or fought against changing the pipes). If the city is proud of their record, and wants to prove that their stated policy was honest, they would be happy to have this record made available to the courts. And even if the courts say that they only need it to determine the probability of organizational wrongdoing in one particular case, there is a chance that this document/database will be leaked, or that the knowledge of such a document/database will cause it to be requested for multiple future cases, for as long as it is still viable to sue the water district or organization. If the water district has done a commendable job, they might even be happy that the document/database gets leaked. They might even leak it themselves. Of course, no organization is perfect, and there will always be items in such a database that make organizations concerned, or even ashamed. The fact that over a thousand cases of abuse in the Australian Branch were NEVER reported to authorities, and that not even one was reported, produced powerful circumstantial evidence that there may have been pressure from somewhere to keep such crimes unreported. It may have shown that almost any excuse will be grasped at to keep such crimes unreported, even in areas where reporting is not only ethical, but mandatory. The Australian database was therefore very important to show a pattern, in the event that a new case would claim that such a pattern actually existed. The other concern, of course, is that, if the database cannot be redacted, that some well-known names of brothers at the highest levels of responsibility in the organization could be revealed, bringing shame on the organization, and the families of those brothers. The Australian database had two names, I'm told, that went to the very top of the Branch in Australia (still living), and one name that went to the very top of the US Branch (a person no longer alive who was moved around after accusations surfaced). If this is true, it would give a whole new dimension to why it is suspected that the US Branch will never release the US database.
  8. 5 points
    This is pretty sad. I think a lot of it had to do with the more Anglocentric makeup of the GB in past years. The motive of giving the appearance of unity is not a bad one. Our styles of dress reflect our unity of worship. It's nice to be able to drive through a neighborhood or even visit another city and recognize Witnesses from quite a distance away. But now, there is more concern for writing counsel that advises an entire world of customs. There is a need to generalize the counsel since every country gets the same counsel. A lot of people think that Rutherford started the no-beard policy as a control measure to make sure that the Russellite cult was weeded out from among the Bible Students. My great grandfather was among the Chicago Bible Students who had many beard-growers because they thought so highly of Russell, who wore a beard. He was well-known in Russell's circle of associates, but would not have "advanced" under Rutherford if he did not cut his beard.
  9. 5 points
    To me, 1 Tim 6:20 seems more related to the so-called knowledge that comes from inside the congregation, because this would be consistent with the prior context of 1 Timothy. The idea of falsely called wisdom from the outside is referred to especially in the first three chapters of 1 Corinthians, which @Outta Here referred to. Not that the idea is wrong, but bringing up 1 Tim 6:20 in the context of something that the JW Organization should be particularly good at seems wrong to me. That's because I believe it refers to something that SHOULD be a pet peeve of every Witness about a particular habit of the Watchtower writers that continues to get us in trouble. We very often, historically, have made claims about certain interpretations of the scriptures that are completely unnecessary, and which turn out to be things that we end up dropping when the contradictions to actual events or other scriptures become too untenable to stretch belief any further. I could relist every single teaching which has had to be updated to make this point. But each of those interpretations was treated as knowledge when it was taught. Even though they turned out to be false, and required updating. Just because we like to avoid the word false, and call it "refinements" or "increasing light" changes nothing about the falsehood of the previously called knowledge. But spiritual food does not have a shelf life. Those false teachings were never spiritual food to begin with. There has NEVER been a reason to turn a specific interpretation into "knowledge."
  10. 5 points
    I will start with this WT Society quote from
      Hello guest!
    : Tell him to stop and listen to the bird singing. Then ask him, "Who created the birds and taught them to sing?" God did this. God created heaven and earth and all living beings!He gives life. Here we see how publication speaking about one special ability, among many others, ability to learn. So, by this quote we see how animals have ability to learn, and that, in a direct way, personally from God! :)) Yes, this WT Society book is for children, but as simplified edition it could be for adults too. :)) Let's go to article named: “His Invisible Qualities Are Clearly Seen” Paul said, "[God] invisible attributes, namely his eternal power and deity, have been clearly seen since the creation of the world, because they are distinguished by what is created, so that these people have no excuses" ( Romans 1:20 ). If we look closely at these words, we will be convinced that the Creator is like an artist who signed his masterpiece. - source:
      Hello guest!
    It is also interesting that in same Creative Day, God has made land animals and humans - together. For First Humans God was not given one Special Day and Separate Day for creating this The Crown of His Creation - humans. No, He made them in the same day. Are Humans the Only Bearers of God’s Image? Humans are not made with some special materials, but also from dust as animals. Also, Genesis not telling us about how in Paradise existed predators and prays. But how all living as Equal Creatures, with no Mastering from first Human above any of animal. They all had equal position in Paradise. To live and be happy. Only after the Flood we see how God speaking about huge change - Permission to kill animals for food: Everything that lives and moves about will be food for you. Just as I gave you the green plants, I now give you everything. Mastering over them in: The fear and dread of you will fall on all the beasts of the earth, and on all the birds in the sky, on every creature that moves along the ground, and on all the fish in the sea; they are given into your hands. But something is also very interesting: And for your lifeblood I will surely demand an accounting. I will demand an accounting from every animal. And from each human being, too, I will demand an accounting for the life of another human being. Lifeblood of animals and of humans are on same Level before God! And next thing is interesting: “I now establish my covenant with you and with your descendants after you 10 and with every living creature that was with you—the birds, the livestock and all the wild animals, all those that came out of the ark with you—every living creature on earth. Why would God made covenant with Animals as the same with Human. Why if Animals have no Qualities that God gave, supposedly, only to Human? Why, if Animals have no brain, conscious, heart, ability as Humans? Humans are Unique in Degree but Not Kind. The capability differences between humans and other creatures seem finally to amount to differences of degree and not kind. The differences among creatures pertain to complexity. There are good reasons to believe humans share basic attributes with other creatures. - source:
      Hello guest!
    Obviously, we have a lot to learn about Animals as creatures made by God Himself. :))
  11. 5 points
    TrueTomHarley

    who is referred to here?

    Moreover, if they really wanted to pump everyone into fever pitch, as John charges they do, they would not have let 1Thess 5:2-3 go unmentioned during last week’s assigned Bible reading—the verse about “whenever they are crying ‘peace and security.’ They would have hyped it to the heavens. Instead, they let it pass unnoticed. I think they are sailing a “steady as she goes” course among treacherous waters, doing their best not to overhype nor underhype. I just don’t like to second-guess their every move. Everyone knows what a pain a back-seat driver is. I don’t want to be one. Does John want to go back to what he once was doing, reasoning that it is enough to know that the end is “out there somewhere?” This course I believe we are “not allowed” to take—not by the GB, but by Jesus, if we would prove ourselves faithful to him. Does John point to things he thinks the GB does wrong? (Does he ever!) I note how Miriam and Aaron began to speak against Moses on account of his Cushite wife—and how Jehovah really, really didn’t like that, and He let them hear about it. This was so even though Moses actually did have a Cushite wife. As much as it is good to roam history in the spirit of “he who does not know history is doomed to repeat it,” it is probably one of those things we are just going to have to accept that we do from time to time. The presumed motivation for so searching past publications is so that we do not yet again emerge with egg on our face when something doesn’t turn out as anticipated. I think it is fair to assume that we may—for the alternative is to forget all about “keeping on the watch”—the opposite shoal, which is even more dangerous than the one we are trying to navigate. To the extent that the intent is to appear “respectable” by never again having to backtrack on prior expectations, I think the intent is misguided, though certainly understandable. Paul was described as a “pest” who was leading a “sect.” Witnesses today can expect no more. Christians then were considered the “offscouring” of the earth. Witnesses today can expect no more. What we have on this site is multiple players trying to make the case that the doers are doing it wrong—overlooking the fact that in most cases they themselves are doing nothing. Witnesses just have to accept that it will be that way. Malcontents and renegades will pick up the same refrain as you-know-who, the one who “accuses our brothers day and night before our God.”
  12. 5 points
    My wife, Susan, sent me a link to this from the downstairs computer, of a woman reunited with her dog who somehow got into a shelter. If you want to distill three days of words, words, and more words, into one photograph ..... look at this one.
  13. 5 points
    Years ago an introductory convention talk featured Matthew 13:52 “...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.” It wouldn’t all be new. It would be also plenty of the old. At seventy years of age, most of it will be old. It will be reminders and exhortations, encouragement and the relating of experiences. It will be new ways of looking at old things—the gem turned so that it is examined through a new facet. Since you are so very much out of harmony with the ones putting on the program, you will kick back at most of it. I mean, you are not exactly easy to satisfy.
  14. 5 points
    I don't know if this is really new, but I learned it's very important to love, and show love to one another because we as heck are going to need it in the future. And I'm talking about true love, the principled kind, not the sentimental kind.
  15. 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)
  16. 5 points
    Where did Adam get his?
  17. 5 points
    That's why he's called God's son God completed the rest of the DNA for him
  18. 4 points
    Here is the Weekly material for the next 2 weeks ---- weeks of August 5-11 and August 12-18, 2019. TB CBS August 5-11, 2019.pdf MEETING WORKBOOK week of August 5-11 , 2019 text only.doc MEETING WORKBOOK week of August 5-11 , 2019 text only.pdf MEETING WORKBOOK week of August 5-11 , 2019.doc MEETING WORKBOOK week of August 5-11 , 2019.pdf Watchtower August 5-11, 2019.doc Watchtower August 5-11, 2019.pdf Additional Highlights - August 5-11, 2019.doc Additional Highlights - August 5-11, 2019.pdf CBS August 5-11, 2019.doc CBS August 12-18, 2019.pdf CBS August 12-18, 2019.doc Additional Highlights -August 12-18, 2019.pdf Additional Highlights -August 12-18, 2019.doc Watchtower August 12-18, 2019.pdf Watchtower August 12-18, 2019.doc MEETING WORKBOOK week of August 12-18 , 2019.pdf MEETING WORKBOOK week of August 12-18 , 2019.doc MEETING WORKBOOK week of August 12-18 , 2019 text only.pdf MEETING WORKBOOK week of August 12-18 , 2019 text only.doc
  19. 4 points
    I would be interested to know how this application can be seen as sound judgement when regular people out in the world shun family members for drug addiction, alcoholism, homosexuality, etc. They, don't accept phone calls, emails, mail, messages relayed by others, secondhand notifications, etc. What makes a Watchtower lawyer unique under the same standard that worldly people use to set people straight. How many drug addicted people live with you? How many extreme alcoholics. In LA, there's a place called skid row where all the abandoned drug addicts and alcoholics live. There are many generous people that go help, but how many do you think will welcome such a person in their home. People need to start thinking before they write if you want this forum to be seen as academic. Now some will argue about fornication and adultery. How can agape love influence those that are doing spiritual harm to themselves and those they have encouraged?
  20. 4 points
    From John Redwood... A preview of upcoming news: Jehovah's Witnesses are appealing to the Supreme Court of the United States, but this time it has nothing to do with preaching or saluting the flag. It's all about child abuse. Specifically, the protection (or cover-up) of information, documents, and testimony of persons involved in cases of child abuse. I will be covering this story in the coming weeks and months, but I thought I would share some of this news and try to distill it down as simply as I can. I'd like to point out first that Watchtower has appealed to the Supreme Court in connection with their loss of yet another California child abuse case. The chance that Watchtower's appeal being will be heard by the Supreme Court is slim, but anything is possible. What brought this about? There are many ongoing civil child abuse cases in California. One such case is J.W. versus Watchtower. J.W. happens to be the initials for the victim of former JW elder Gilbert Simental, who went on a spree of molestation which touched the lives of numerous victims. As with other cases, the plaintiff demanded that Watchtower turn over to the court a database of child abuse cases known to be maintained by Watchtower of New York. In this particular case, because Watchtower failed to turn over the documents in a timely manner, attorneys asked for a default judgment of just over 4 million dollars. The court agreed with the plaintiff and entered a default judgment in that amount. Watchtower was required to post a bond of more than 6 million dollars while their appeal was pending. Watchtower lost their appeal, and the decision of the court was upheld. This decision is final- with one exception. Watchtower has decided to appeal to the United States Supreme court on the basis that their judicial hearings related to child abuse matters are "confidential intra-faith communications" and that they do not, and should not, reveal those communications or documents to anyone, including civil courts. I'd like to make it very clear what Watchtower is doing here. They are fighting for their right NOT to allow civil authorities to dictate what is confidential, and what is not confidential. All of this is in relation to their claim that elders do not have the right or duty to report child abuse to the authorities. Watchtower overtly lies to their members by claiming that they obey secular laws, except when they conflict with God's laws. Yet they break the law every single time by advising elders NOT to report child abuse to the authorities. It does NOT matter whether child abuse occurs in a mandatory reporting state- elders STILL do not report to the police because Watchtower has told them that ALL of their communications are protected by clergy-penitent privilege. This is false- and it is exactly why they are losing tens of millions of dollars in child abuse civil cases. Watchtower advises elders to break the law. And now they want the Supreme Court of the United States to agree with them. The claim that the state of California has unfairly targeted Jehovah's Witnesses and "intruded upon matters of church governance." Why??? How does compliance with mandatory child abuse reporting laws conflict with God's laws? It doesn't. This is a fabrication of Watchtower attorneys working for the Governing Body, and it's become quite clear that they feel that compliance with these civil laws will spell disaster for their religion. And they might be right. If Jehovah's Witnesses did the right thing and complied with the law, they would lose the tight grip of control over their elder bodies in ways which frighten the hell out of them. There is a whole lot more to this story as well as the underlying cases involved, but I wanted to let you know what's going on. Attorneys for J.W. (the abuse victim) will be filing an opposition to Watchtower's appeal in August, and we should have a decision from the Supreme Court by October on whether they will accept Jehovah's Witnesses appeal for review. Stay tuned!!
      Hello guest!
  21. 4 points
    To make a very long story very short, almost to the point of abbreviation .... and trying to stay on topic .... In the past 57 years, I have been in the "little back room, Room 101", about 17 times, being "counseled" by Elders that did not like "something" about me ... that I worked a lot of overtime, that I rode a Honda 350 motorcycle to the Kingdom Hall, that I "refused" to provide a telephone for my wife, ad nauseum ... and I REALLY HATE BULLIES! ... but I digress ... and about 8 or so of those times it was to get me to cut off my beard. One time it was because of my mustache. During the 60's it was because my hair came down just perceptively below the collar. In one congregation in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, I had no problem with the beard ... and even got a recommendation letter to go work at the Bethel Branch Office construction in Peru ... and in all others, I was castigated, and even forbidden to go out in Service until I shaved off my beard. After eight discussions, and no valid scriptural reasoning, all joy in doing what I was doing was destroyed ... but it bothered me A LOT that stuff like this was being inflicted on the global Brotherhood, in almost EVERY congregation I had ever attended. If they could do it to me... they WERE doing it to other Brothers ... and things similar to this. Based on all available real evidence, it seemed to me that in order to be a watchtower approved Elder you had to be qualified as follows: 1.) clueless 2.) petty 3.) irrational 4.be a "Company Man", through and through. 5.) and have no pangs of conscience whatsoever for being a bully. To be fair, I have also run across Engineers and Doctors that shared these traits, but they did not operate in an environment that ENCOURAGED this behavior. The other day I mentioned in a comment that I envied Anna, and she replied that she knew that ... because she still seems to have the joy in the Truth that has been systematically beaten out of me. I miss the man I used to be. A lot! I did have a choice, however ... either "get with the program", or keep my self respect. It has gotten better over the years, but only marginally, but I have endured things far, far worse that these things I have mentioned ... and I will endure things like this also. When my Dad died, about ten years ago, he asked me to shave off my beard ... he also never liked it .... and I have been clean shaven since then. I loved my Dad. I HATE BULLIES! I am 72 now, and in marginal health .... and can see the end of the "conveyor belt" on which I stand, and it bothers me. I am too old and fragile to carry on my back bags of heavy stones for someone else's entertainment.
  22. 4 points
    JW Insider

    who is referred to here?

    That's good advice. I really did take a risk in guessing that @Bubba Johnson Jr also had in mind how Brother Splane's "Chart of the Ages" could be related to 1 Thess 5. It turned out that I was right, and that this was not a distraction from the subject matter, but ended up getting right to the heart of the subject matter. To me, the mistake that Russell made with the pyramids also gets exactly to the real heart of the matter. This is why, as a joke, I did something similar with Splane's chart to what Russell claimed he did with the charts of the crisscrossing drains and ducts that were built into the Pyramid. I won't discuss the pyramid topic in full here, but if anyone else is interested in a serious discussion I'm up for it under another topic heading. Your own post was typical. A few things right, a few things wrong, a few WT quotes with unrelated information that you believe defended Russell. You add information that you pretend is not already simple and obvious so that you can call others ignorant and deceptive. Unfortunately, even if you already see where you were wrong, I still have come to expect only more attacks, arrogance, name calling and diversions. If you want anyone to take you seriously, I recommend a method that gives more weight to facts and evidence, rather than just bluster and arrogance.
  23. 4 points
    Anna

    who is referred to here?

    I understand you may be concerned about adding anything to scripture (or taking away), since that is a very serious thing, but adding something to what is after all human speculation, surely is not a big deal? Also, what Jesus Christ is saying to us now, is what he said 2000 years ago, and is recorded in the Bible for anyone to see.
  24. 4 points
    Truth means "the whole truth, and nothing but the truth." Not whitewashed, partial truth, and not just the "spin" that tickles our ears. That's everyone's own business whether they would rather know the whole truth, or ignore the truth, or assume that others can and should prioritize for them what they need to know as "the truth." But, for me, I think we would be hypocrites to sing songs like we just did this last week. (Make the Truth Your Own), the comments on Colossians 2:8, etc., etc. Most of our meetings contain small reminders that we need to "love" truth. It shouldn't matter where it takes us. Actually, it should matter. And it should matter, even more, that some people don't want us to go where it takes us. It's difficult for most of us to admit that the "Watchtower religion" has been a cult in the past. (In the more pejorative sense of the word.) The Watchtower publicly admits that this is true, claiming that many of the Bible Students were cult worshipers of Charles Taze Russell. We know that Rutherford said he determined to rid the Watchtower of the personality cult that worshiped Russell. He called this "creature worship" because they were worshiping a man. But we also know that, for many years, Rutherford himself was part of the same cult, and even bragged in 1916 that Russell's enemies would soon have to come and "worship at his feet." But, in general, I think Rutherford finally did a pretty good job replacing the cult members with persons who were looking for practical Bible truth, and not just for a man to do their thinking for them. But many persons, even Watchtower writers, have confused God and the earthly organization. And, this idea might surprise many, but I think that F.W.Franz gave evidence that he remained as a "cult" member until he died. He loved being seen as the the primary Rabbi --The ORACLE, they called him-- and it went to his head as he tried for his entire career to revive interest in dates, chronology, numerology, Jubilees, new truths (prophetic interpretations), parallel dispensations, the pre-eminence of the truly anointed, etc. I think his influence created cult members out of several ordinary Witnesses. I believe that my great-grandfather (from even before F.Franz was at Bethel) was a "cult" member in the organization until the 1960's when he died, even though my other relatives were (and are) regular JWs, and not cult members. I'm pretty sure that C.Woodworth was a cult member until the 1950's when he died. I know that when they searched out documentation and photos for the Proclaimer's book, they were astounded at the "cult" material still available in Witnesses' archives, including F.Franz himself. And many Witnesses, today, are tempted to look at 8 men exactly the way that Bible Students looked at Russell. The way we defend or dismiss the material from our past history can be an indicator as to whether we too have succumbed to cult thinking. Even the way we defend current material that came out of long-standing traditions of the past can also be an indicator. I can talk to Mormons and Seventh Day Adventists for hours and recognize almost immediately which ones are in a "cult" and which ones aren't by the manner in which they defend Ellen G White or Joseph Smith when glaring problems are pointed out. (Job 31:26-28) 26 If I saw the sun shining Or the moon moving in its splendor; 27 And my heart was secretly enticed, And my mouth kissed my hand in worship of them; 28 Then that would be an error deserving punishment by the judges, For I would have denied the true God above.
  25. 4 points
    They are outlines at the assemblies and conventions, but they are so tightly packed that it is barely possible to deviate or ramble. Most convention talks these days are but 10 minutes in length, and that often includes a video. Public talks at the Kingdom Hall are 30 minutes in length. The aim is to follow the outline supplied, but there is more room for expounding, illustrating, personalization, etc. Mess up a Kingdom Hall talk and you may live to do another one. Mess up an assembly talk and you are not likely to be assigned another.
  26. 4 points
    Well, James.... I learned that yes, Manasseh did actually repent and was forgiven by Jehovah. (i.e. there is hope for the rest of us!) How do I know? I saw him with my own eyes. Usually, after living a number of years, we may take stock of ourselves and realize the things that we did not want to believe about ourselves were actually true. We repent and begin to consider how can we make amends. We mellow. How many people are aware of these very personal things that you have revealed about yourself? A lot? A few? I know these were very hurtful things for you. Thank you for letting us know these things. I am glad that your current mate is "the love of your life and your best friend. May you both live for an eternity together in perfection in Jehovah's new world!
  27. 4 points
    Forgot to use this scripture in my first post. Reason we go to meetings and conventions and assemblies (apparently these two are not synonyms) (Hebrews 10:24, 25) And let us consider one another so as to incite to love and fine works, 25 not forsaking our meeting together, as some have the custom, but encouraging one another, and all the more so as you see the day drawing near. Plain and simple.
  28. 4 points
    There seems to be myth being addressed in this discussion hence the erroneous and void conclusions. Fact: Rape by definition takes place when force or the threat of force is used to gain sexual penetration, of any kind whatsoever, against a person's will. It is the rapist's use of force against an unwilling victim that makes him a rapist. Thus, a rape victim is not guilty of fornication. Like an incest victim, they may be forced to submit to an act they doesn't want because of the perceived power held over them by another person. In some cases this coercion could be very subtle, but nevertheless, coercion it is. When a person is forced to submit to a rapist out of terror or disorientation, it does not mean that they consent to the act. Consent is based on choice without threat and is active, not passive.
  29. 4 points
    As "Winsider complains of me not citing the source, how about you do the same. He won't criticize opposer's since he believes they deserve every opportunity to get their licks in when attacking the Watchtower. Especially in areas that he seems to support. However, that double standard doesn't fly with me, so post your sources accordingly. 😉
  30. 4 points
    Hmmm. You probably found some good counsel for me on that one. The beauty of some of these places really was impressive to me, especially the Huntington Library (Gardens). And so was the wedding, with "bowers of flowers" and other decorations everywhere. Also, I was not just "secretly" impressed either, as I gladly admitted it out loud. And, of course, I am also secretly impressed that all this "free vacation" for a week, cost me no more than the plane flight, as everything else was paid for -- through no merit of my own. (I paid for the plane ticket because my wife and I were coming out here anyway for an "anniversary trip" -- which mostly means that I am out here installing an automatic "lift" in the back of my parents' car so that my mother doesn't have to push my father's electric wheelchair/scooter up an aluminum ramp at a too steep an angle anymore. [She's afraid to just put it in gear and let it drive up the ramp by itself.] My father usually uses a walker, but for assemblies and other places with a lot of walking, he uses the scooter.)
  31. 4 points
    Over the weekend, I was in a circuit way out there in the back hills, and I came to know some of the strange ways of the local elders out there. I learned that when they really got riled at one another, they would spit out out the most spiteful words that they could think of: “May you be assigned to preside in JTR’s congregation!”
  32. 4 points
    No problem Srecko. As long as you know your stupider than me and uneducated about scripture just as much as most people here, We understand each other. 😏
  33. 4 points
  34. 4 points
    Wow! Is there something holding you back from saying what's really on your mind? My father and grandfather attended KM school in Pittsburgh back in the early 70's about a year apart from each other. So I would often hear them compare notes as to what Bro. Schroeder had said on a topic. Schroeder was still of the "Rutherford" school when it came to how the entire world was "inspired" of Satan, which influenced his speech about who would die at Armageddon and why we don't celebrate Christmas, Easter, etc. As part of their training, Brother Schroeder would give them questions that the "Press" might ask them, so elders could practice answers that were "cautious as serpents yet innocent as doves" so to speak. For example: Question: Do you think the Pope will be destroyed at Armageddon? This gets lots of snickers, and a few brothers willing to say, 'Of course he will be destroyed!.' So Brother Schroeder says that, well, we all know the answer, but what do we tell the Press? He recommended saying: Answer: "He'll get what he deserves!" This gets uproarious laughter, and must have been treated as if Jesus had just said "Pay back Caesar's things to Caesar." It becomes kind of a joke between my father and grandfather, so that they only needed to say: "He'll get what he deserves!" when hearing about other infamous happenings in the world (e.g., Watergate, Nixon Impeachment, US Supreme Court on Roe v. Wade, Spiro Agnew). I don't know whether Schroeder himself mentioned people with Christmas trees, but I remember being a bit taken aback that my father and grandfather even applied it for a while to people with Christmas trees, people singing Christmas carols on TV, etc., even though they started to say it in a kind of joking way, knowing that the phrase was getting old. When you mentioned that the Society knew that Christmas was wrong before 1900 but kept celebrating until the late 1920's it reminded me of this. Imagine if Armageddon had actually come in 1915, or 1918, or 1925, as they sometimes expected. In effect, my father and grandfather were saying that Rutherford and all the people in the entire Watch Tower Society would have been destroyed. I can imagine how we, as an organization, would have felt if we knew that certain people or groups who had already stopped celebrating Christmas were looking at the Watch Tower Society at the time and saying "They'll get what they deserve at Armageddon." When it comes to all this judgmental speech, here in this forum, I try to remember to test it by thinking what we would say if we were guests in a Mormon forum, or a Catholic forum. Would you, for example, go into a Mormon-centric forum right now and say that 15 million Mormons (LDS) are all inspired by Satan. (And yes they have had trouble with child sexual abuse and cover-ups.) And because a high percentage of Catholics support the Pope, would you go into a Catholic-centric forum and say that 1 billion Catholics are inspired by Satan. To me, it seems a bit over the top, even though you could probably find a near equivalent problem in the Mormon Church or the Catholic Church for every problem you see among Jehovah's Witnesses. I'm not one to tell you to stop saying whatever you want to say, as you probably feel like a good part of your life was wasted among Jehovah's Witnesses, and I'm sure this drives a lot of the "tone." I am reminded of the "tone" that Rutherford took against the clergy, especially the Catholic hierarchy, and he could rationalize that he was protecting the world from Catholicism -- just as you probably think you are trying to protect the world from Jehovah's Witnesses, or at least to protect a few other Jehovah's Witnesses from themselves.
  35. 4 points
    An example is this Satan's statement recorded here: "So he brought him up and showed him all the kingdoms of the inhabited earth in an instant of time.  Then the Devil said to him: “I will give you all this authority and their glory, because it has been handed over to me, and I give it to whomever I wish." Luke 4:4-6
  36. 4 points
    [Dennis Christensen’s closing statement] First, I want to thank my wife Irina, who from the very beginning did everything in her power to help and support me. She took care of me, passed me clothes, groceries, medicines and other things that I needed in the SIZO (Pre-Trial Detention Centre). She has supported me emotionally and spiritually with her visits and letters that I have received from her every day. My dear wife, your strong faith, your great patience, your peace of mind and love for me and for the truth, including your optimism, have all been a great example to me. You should know that I love you very much and that I am very proud of you! I also want to thank my family in Denmark, especially my elderly father and my sister. You should know that I miss you so much. I love you and appreciate everything you have done for me. During my stay in the SIZO you supported me with your numerous letters and telephone conversations. I am sure that you will never give up and lose hope that we will be able to come together again as a family one day. I also want to thank all my many friends from all over the world. You supported me with your letters, encouraging thoughts, beautiful drawings and various gifts. All this has helped me to understand that I am not alone, and that I have a large global family. Dear friends, you should know that every letter, big or small, has encouraged and strengthened me. Please do not be discouraged if I do not have time to respond to your letters. I will find you, thank you and hug you in the future, I promise! I also want to thank the Embassy of the Kingdom of Denmark in Moscow and all its staff. You attended many court sessions and repeatedly visited me in the SIZO. Your helpful advice, guidance and encouragement mean a lot to me, and I really appreciate your support and the great help that you have given me. I would also like to thank the Court of Appeal for the fact that I personally was able to attend this court hearing. When I participated in other appellate cases through videoconferencing from the SIZO, it was difficult for me to hear everything that was said. I had to guess half of what was happening there. This is an unworthy way to defend someone. In addition, when using the conference call in the SIZO, you must sit in jail, as if you were an animal in a zoo. I consider this an unworthy, inhuman treatment today, in the 21st century. At the present, I have already been in the SIZO for almost two years, and this trial has been going on for 15 months. To endure all this, not to give up and not to lose heart, it is extremely necessary to have a certain inner strength. The Bible says - in Philippians, the 4th chapter, the 12th verse - that “I can do everything by him that strengthens me.” In the book of the Prophet Isaiah, the 12th chapter, in verse 2 it is written: “Behold, God is my salvation: I trust in Him and have no fear; for the Lord is my strength, and my song is the Lord; and he has been my salvation. " Throughout this period, I have felt that my God, Jehovah, has been next to me and has given me the strength to endure all this. The power to not give up, not to lose heart, to be joyful and happy and to continue to smile. I am sincerely grateful to him for this and am proud to serve Him as one of his witnesses, one of Jehovah's Witnesses. Many people have asked me how this criminal case have affected me. Of course, it is not easy to be in a SIZO for such a long period of time, to be cut off from your wife and from close contact with your family and friends. The last two years I have lived a very closed life. You could say I have just existed. 23 hours a day I have spent in my prison cell of 3 by 6 meters, and for an hour every day I have gone for a walk in the walking yard, also 3 by 6 meters, although under the open sky. During this time, I met various people with whom I had many interesting conversations. And I noticed that many of them are trying to achieve a decent, honest investigation and trial. Most feel that the system does not hear them, and I have also felt a similar feeling in the past two years. I tried to support and encourage them as best I could, because I am sure that Jesus Christ would have done the same. I made many new friends, some of them were present at a part of the court sessions, and some wrote letters to me. I personally know some of them, but others not yet. Some havethe same faith as I do, others do not, but they still support me, because they cannot tolerate the injustice that is happening here in Russia, the way some here try to make Jehovah’sWitnesses, citizens who love their neighbour as themselves, out to be criminals and call them extremists. This is completely illogical and ridiculous. Many are shocked by the fact that such things happen here, in Russia, in the 21st century. Someone asked me how this criminal case has affected my faith. Thanks to this criminal case, my faith has only become stronger, and I have experienced what the Bible said in the Epistle of James, the first chapter, in verses 2 through 4: “Take great joy, my brethren, when you meet with various trials, knowing that the test of your faith produces endurance; but endurance must have its action complete, so that you may be complete in its entirety, without any deficiency. ” I am still far from perfect, but I have learned to be steadfast and remain joyful in my ordeals. And the most important thing I want to emphasize is that I have drawn even closer to my God Jehovah and have received an even more ardent desire to tell others about him and his purposes, an ardent desire to continue preaching the good news of the Kingdom of God, which is the only solution for humanity. A fervent desire to share with others the joyful message from the Bible about the world and eternal life here, in paradise on earth to help them get closer to the Creator and help develop strong faith in him and his promises. This speech is officially called “the last word in my defence,” and maybe these will be the last words you will hear from me today. Maybe this is the last court hearing in this criminal case, and it will become an end to this last two-year period of my life. But I want to assure you that these are not my last words in this case about the injustice that is happening here in Russia against peaceful and completely innocent people. I have just started, and I have a lot more that I want to tell you publicly. I'm not going to be silent, as if I am guilty and have something to hide. I have a clear conscience, I have not done anything wrong, I have not violated any law of Russia and I have nothing to be ashamed of. What is being done against me and other Witnesses here in Russia are false accusations of extremism, interrogations, detentions, searches, confiscations, discoveries, threats, and now even torture. This should be shameful. It is of course adisgrace. The truth always becomes apparent, and justice will sooner or later prevail. In the Bible, in Galatians, chapter 6, verse 7, it says: “Do not be deceived: God is not mocked. Whatever a man sows, he will reap. ” The court of first instance sentenced me to 6 years in prison, but for what? Nothing. There is no evidence that I did something wrong. On the contrary, there is a lot of evidence that I enjoyed the rights granted to me under Article 28 of the Constitution of the Russian Federation. I observe the law of the Russian state and am an honest person. I am a Christian, a believer, a Jehovah's Witness, and I love the Russian people. What are they punishing me for? Why should I be in prison for 6 years? Nothing. This is unfair. I sincerely hope that the Court of Appeal today will protect what is right and take care that justice prevail. That it will namely stop the persecution of faith, which is happening now in Russia. I very much hope that this court of appeal will send a signal to the whole world that here in Russia there is freedom of religion for all people. In the near future these words will be fulfilled: “And he, God, will judge many nations, and they will cast their swords into plowshares and their spears into sickles; nation will not raise the sword against nation, and they will no longer learn how to wage war. But each one will sit under his vine and under his fig tree, and no one will frighten them.” The words of Micah, chapter 4, verses 3 and 4. God always judges justly, and under his rule there will no longer be disagreements, violence and wars. On the contrary, there will be peace, and there will be no anxieties. In other words, there will be true happiness for all of humanity. Your Honor, with your decision today you can make a big step in this direction, in the direction of justice and peace. A big step towards a world without anxiety, sadness and injustice. And I hope you do that. Thank you in advance! [The appeal failed. Seemingly, it had already been decided that it would.]
  37. 4 points
    100% true. Somehow though I think that the idea of unquestioned obedience to a group of uninspired men exists in the minds of some Witnesses, but not all. I had a conversation along similar lines with Witnesses on another website, and when I pointed out that Br. Jackson of the GB himself indicated that we should not have unquestioning obedience to them, and I even quoted Br. Jackson to support what I said, I got thrown out of the forum. I paraphrase Br. Jackson here as I am on another computer and do not have access to the transcript where he made that quote. Basically, the gist of what he said was that "if the GB said something that was out of line with the scriptures, then all other JWs who have the Bible, would see that it was wrong direction". In other words, if others recognized from the Bible that certain direction was wrong, they would not follow it, no matter who it came from. So really, that kind of solves the problem. Someone has to take the lead, and if we use the Bible as a measuring stick, and see that that person, or body of persons are going against the scriptures, then it would be wrong of us to obey them in that particular instance as we must obey God as ruler, rather than men.
  38. 4 points
    How many times have some of us cut off a bruised section of, let’s say an apple, and still enjoyed eating the rest? We know that normally a small bruise doesn’t affect the taste of the apple. The other day, I had one apple left of any fruit available; one which was clean of bruises, but was just beginning to rot. I knew this, but felt I could cut off the soft brown blemish and eat the rest, just as I had done with a bruise. Upon cutting, I could see the rot had traveled into the core, but I diligently scored out the discolored tissue with the hope of enjoying what remained. The first bite told the story of bitter rottenness. The unpleasant taste had traveled well through the apple; and yet, I made sure I ate as much as I normally would, all the while questioning why I pushed myself to eat such a terrible tasting piece of fruit. Well, I’ll not be doing that again…ever. When an apple begins to rot, fungus has made its way into the flesh through a puncture in the skin. It can happen from contaminated water during the harvesting process; and it is true that “one bad apple spoils the whole bunch”, through the off-gassing of the hormone “ethylene”. An apple infested with fungal mold will spread and contaminate other fruit, looking for another host to grow on; and it successfully accomplishes rotting the whole bunch, all while taking place in the dark. To ripen, an apple needs the light from the sun; to rot and decay – disease and darkness. It seems appropriate that trees are expressed in the Bible as the source of pure teachings, although there are those who are considered bearers of rotten fruit. It is by their “fruit” that we recognize true or false prophets, or true or false teachers. So, it is the anointed who are these trees outlined in the scriptures. Ps 1:1-3 Whatever their heart contains will be the nature of the “fruit” they produce and supply to their hearers. Luke 6:43-45 Matt 12:33-37 - Either make the tree good and its fruit will be good, or make the tree bad and its fruit will be bad; for a tree is known by its fruit. 34 Brood of vipers! How can you speak good things when you are evil? For the mouth speaks from the overflow of the heart. 35 A good person produces good things from his storeroom of good, and an evil person produces evil things from his storeroom of evil. 36 I tell you that on the day of judgment people will have to account for every worthless word they speak. 37 For by your words you will be acquitted, and by your words you will be condemned.” Matt 7:15-20 - “Be on your guard against false prophets who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravaging wolves. 16 You’ll recognize them by their fruit. Are grapes gathered from thornbushes or figs from thistles?17 In the same way, every good tree produces good fruit, but a bad tree produces bad fruit. 18 A good tree can’t produce bad fruit; neither can a bad tree produce good fruit. 19 Every tree that doesn’t produce good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. 20 So you’ll recognize them by their fruit. Pearl Doxsey: “Trees are only a symbol which represents, teachers. If there were no symbolic "trees", there would be no witnesses of God, nor offering of spiritual food (knowledge). Each tree decides what kind of teacher they will be, and what sort of "fruit" they will produce and offer others to "eat". God equips them with wisdom so that they can enjoy the happiness of giving the knowledge of life. But God does not force them to produce what He wishes. Their mouth will produce fruit according to the abundance of their own heart. (Luke 6:45; Matt 12:33-37; 7:20; Heb 13:15; John 1:1,4;8:12;12:46;Prov 11:30;10:11;3:13,18; Eph 5:8-12) The Bible reveals that Satan's mouth, also bears "fruit"/teachings (Rev 16:13;12:15; Col2:8; 2 Cor 11:3; 1 Tim 6:20,21; Gen 3:4,5; Rev 2:24; James 3:15) Just as Jesus is "the way" and his teachings are the road to life; Satan's deceptions are the road which leads to destruction (2 Thess 2:9,10; Matt 7:13; Rev 12:9). All of Satan's teachings/"fruit" are lies, darkness, error/sin, and they lead to death John 8:44; Heb 2:14; James 1:15. To take in such teachings is to be deceived. Eve herself obtained this falsely-called knowledge (Gen 3:13; 1 Tim 6:20; James 3:15) which resulted in her death (Rom 5:12; Gen 2:17). (From “Two Trees”, 4womaninthewilderness) Dear JWs, the phrase, “new light” which is assigned to new Watchtower teachings, is a twist of scripture to hide the rotten blemishes on the “fruit” your “trees” have produced for over a century. (to get a more comprehensive understanding of Prov 4:18 , read Prov 4:10-19) The “new” apple looks perfect at first glance, until you take the time to examine it thoroughly and find the beginning evidence of decay. You have a choice not to eat rotten “fruit; in fact, Jesus expects you to examine all teachings by anointed ones. It is only men who expect you to gratefully accept their time-tested rotten offerings. 2 Cor 11:19,20; Rev 13:11,14-17 From what many of us have experienced, we realize the majority of Watchtower’s teachings are rotten to the “core” of its existence. If you have not done so, I hope you search for the list of failed dates of Armageddon’s arrival, which affected other time-table dates and doctrine associated with them, such as the meaning of “this generation”. 1 John 4:1 Can you imagine Jesus offering “fruit” with any source of disease or blemish to his listeners, while he was on the earth? James 3:17 He told his disciples: “You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you so that you might go and bear fruit—FRUIT THAT WILL LAST—and so that whatever you ask in my name the Father will give you.” John 15:16 Would this be possible without the light of life from the Son? John 1:1,4;8:12 “For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light— 9 for the fruit of the light consists of all goodness, righteousness, and truth - 10 testing what is pleasing to the Lord. 11 Don’t participate in the fruitless works of darkness, but instead expose them. 12 For it is shameful even to mention what is done by them in secret. Eph 5:8-12 JWs, would you say your leaders’ “fruit” concerning the many historical changes to “this generation” ripened in the light of Christ, or did each new version emerge from the same diseased bunch, harboring mold in some dark WT cellar? It is a fact that many fruitless, worthless teachings have been tossed out by the organization. Titus 1:15,16 Will there be more? The Bible states “Wormwood’s” waters contaminate true teachings and mislead many with a corrupted form of “nourishing food”. Heb 12:15; Rev 8:10,11;16:13 Please, put the pieces together; through my own experience, I perceived that what they offer you as “good fruit” is already riddled with disease, spawned in the dark recesses of evil men’s hearts. Isa 28:14,15,7,8; Eph 2:1-3 1 Tim 6:20,21: “Timothy, guard what has been entrusted to you, avoiding irreverent and empty speech and contradictions from what is falsely called knowledge. 21 By professing it, some people have departed from the faith.” 2 Thess 2:9,10: “The coming of the lawless one is based on Satan’s working, with all kinds of false miracles, signs, and wonders,10 and with every wicked deception among those who are perishing. They perish because they did not accept the love of the truth and so be saved.” Consider Pearl Doxsey’s article – “Wormwood/The False Prophet/Armageddon”, 4womaninthewilderness
  39. 4 points
    Re making interest by way of bank or stock market: (Matthew 25:24-27) 24 “Finally the slave who had received the one talent came forward and said: ‘Master, I knew you to be a demanding man, reaping where you did not sow and gathering where you did not winnow. 25 So I grew afraid and went and hid your talent in the ground. Here, you have what is yours.’ 26 In reply his master said to him: ‘Wicked and sluggish slave, you knew, did you, that I reaped where I did not sow and gathered where I did not winnow? 27 Well, then, you should have deposited my money with the bankers, and on my coming I would have received it back with interest. Jesus acknowledged the bankers' work (and the methods they use to get interest). If the bankers gamble with your money (in the stock market - every single bank [international development bank and commercial bank] has a department that invests in stocks) and make interest you don't usually complain and ask how the interest was made and wherein they invested your money. You put out your hand and take the interest. It is like what Paul said: (1 Corinthians 10:25, 26)" 25 Eat whatever is sold in a meat market, making no inquiry because of your conscience, 26 for “to Jehovah belong the earth and everything in it.”
  40. 4 points
    Outta Here

    REPROOF FROM THE PLATFORM

    The only two things we can safely say about "this generation" (the contentious one) is that: 1. It will pass. 2. At a day and hour which no man knows.
  41. 4 points
    We have got a great way to minimise our Not-At-Homes. We've been doing it for years: Not Homes.mp4
  42. 4 points
    I could be in serious trouble. They just finished remodeling the Kingdom Hall, and there are two quarter walls, one left of stage and one right. Gulp. Will the brother start entering and exiting the platform via those quarter walls, just like I saw them do in the other congregation?
      Hello guest!
    The circuit overseer was visiting, so I started pumping him on it. “‘Don’t let the brothers walk behind the quarter wall to go on-stage,” I told him. I was not too insistent, one mustn’t overdo it on these things. I mean, I don’t want to be the brother who meets him in the parking lot to tell him that all the brothers are no good, and they aren’t loving at all, and they are deadwood in the ministry, and come to think of it, they don’t even like God, and so he, the circuit overseer, has a lot of work to do here, and he says “Yeah, I think I’ve found the problem already.” I did about as much as I could. He seemed to be sympathetic. “Yeah, I know,” he said. “You see them, then you don’t as they walk behind the wall, and then you do as they emerge from the other side—it IS a little funny.” So I gave it a good try. But he was just biding his time to get away from me. He is not going to do anything at all, I don’t think, other than tell the brothers to go on the platform when it is their turn to speak. What does he care how they do it? It doesn’t bother HIM any one way of the other. It’s ME it’s driving nuts, and then he will say “Well, you were mostly there already.” I have always tried to stack the deck. Those elders way back in the day would have a meeting coming up and I would pump various ones separately over multitude of picayune things, so that one of them said at their meeting (as I was told later) “Wait a minute. Who’s running this congregation? You, me, or Tom Harley?” But lo! A miracle has occurred. Never never never NEVER did I think I would EVER agree with @Jack Ryan. But I do on something. Jack Ryan! who if a Bethel brother so much as farts, he starts a derogatory thread on it. Jack Ryan! who has been known to start as many as a dozen critical threads in a single day. Jack Ryan! who I think regards himself as some sort of a secret agent/freedom fighter. What is it with this character? Yet, I saw, yes—I witnessed it while visiting another congregation, brothers clapping after each and every exchange that took place up front, whether li8ve or on video, just the way Jack was complaining about. Suddenly he becomes as a prophet from on high. That too, drove me nuts!—all that clapping. You don’t clap over every single skit of one sister offering a tract to another, who, of course accepts it a just little too eagerly, it seems to me, from what I recall in the actual ministry. You clap spontaneously when something really knocks your socks off. You clap when a child or even anyone gives his or her first talk on the school. You clap when the spirit genuinely moves you, for anything. You clap after the public talk, even giving the speaker the benefit of the doubt if it wasn’t that—um—good. But you don’t clap for every minor exchange of trivial words! It only cheapens the times that there really is something to clap for. I know where this comes from, just like I know where walking behind the quarter walls came from. Some pious brother doubtless wanted to “show appreciation” for everything under the sun and so started up the habit, thinking he was setting a ‘good example’ and that others would follow, and those others, not wanting to seem unappreciative, did follow, even some half-heartedly. However, it is possible that it is not the pious brother at all who is responsible, but rather the one who is too swayed by the new-agey mantra that you have to lavish praise on children non-stop just for showing up, for the sake of building self-esteem, and so they clap if a brother so much as clears his throat. I mean, don’t go pinning this one on “theocracy,” Jack—it could just as well be that trendy “world” that you are so enamored with. This will not the easiest habit to break. I mean, you can hardly sit there and scowl, so as to provide the counter-example. The best strategy is just to contain it, as you might strive to do with a measles outbreak. Don’t send speakers to that congregation for awhile, until the illness passes. I doubt I can even enlist the circuit overseer in any serious capacity on this one. He will probably just roll his eyes when I meet him about it in the parking lot. C’mon, DO IT RIGHT, BROTHERS!
  43. 4 points
    We have always used the Bible as the sole authority for our beliefs, so we have adjusted our beliefs as our understanding of the Scriptures has been clarified. - source JWorg Here we have maneuver by JW Clergy Leaders who try to justify, by Bible, how they have made/making changes of Organizational doctrines and beliefs, because they have not understand the Scriptures before (and today too). In meantime, while they were not been aware of false and wrong in own doctrines, they continued to force and run wrong laws inside JW congregations. Exactly this and that WTJWORG mandate beliefs, are what can be called by name you used in comment - provisional laws. With time passing, WT Leaders changed doctrines which they presented as Bible Truths and God's Word. After some time they made new doctrines out of old doctrines, and again they called such modified rules-doctrines-laws as Bible Truths and God's Word. They using lexical terminology such as; adjusted our beliefs .....Scriptures has been clarified. Well, we have different wording but same package of meanings and results: Provisional Laws ........ Adjusted our beliefs ...... Scriptures has been clarified.
  44. 4 points
    For what it's worth, my opinion is that @JW Insider works for both sides in a different sense. I like the way Paul put it: (1 Corinthians 9:19-23) . . .For though I am free from all people, I have made myself the slave to all, so that I may gain as many people as possible. 20 To the Jews I became as a Jew in order to gain Jews; to those under law I became as under law, though I myself am not under law, in order to gain those under law. 21 To those without law I became as without law, although I am not without law toward God but under law toward Christ, in order to gain those without law. 22 To the weak I became weak, in order to gain the weak. I have become all things to people of all sorts, so that I might by all possible means save some. 23 But I do all things for the sake of the good news, in order to share it with others. Early Christianity started out in the context of Judaism, which had become steeped in end-of-the-world eschatology, and the legalism of the Pharisees. But end-of-the-world eschatology, although dangerous to Christianity on its own (per Jesus), still naturally drew out crowds of people who sighed and groaned over the injustices of their world. They wanted a new heavens and a new earth, and they wanted it as soon as possible. So early Christians would be mistaken to focus on eschatology, but many good Christians, desirous of a new heavens and new earth, would naturally come to Christianity through this path. Jesus gave several illustrations showing why focusing on eschatology was so dangerous to true Christianity, and we have the words of Peter to explain how Christians must transform into those who would be the very same type of person they ought to be, whether the parousia came in their own lifetime, or whether it came 1,000 years after their own lifetime. Another major focus of Jesus' illustrations and teaching was about legalism. Early Christianity was still steeped in Judaism, and still attempted to put Christians under law, even after it was recognized that the Judaic system didn't apply to gentiles. Jesus' illustration in Matthew 24:45 of the unfaithful servants --who would beat their fellow slaves and try to lord it over them when the master was gone-- is a good illustration reminding us of the dangers of both eschatology AND the dangers of legalism/Pharisaism. Paul played both sides of Pharisaism/legalism because he was accused of being an apostate from Judaism. So they asked him to pay for some legalistic customary preparations for the persons going with him to the Temple. (Acts 21:20-24) . . .but they said to him: “You see, brother, how many thousands of believers there are among the Jews, and they are all zealous for the Law. 21 But they have heard it rumored about you that you have been teaching all the Jews among the nations an apostasy from Moses, telling them not to circumcise their children or to follow the customary practices. 22 What, then, is to be done about it? They are certainly going to hear that you have arrived. 23 So do what we tell you: We have four men who have put themselves under a vow. 24 Take these men with you and cleanse yourself ceremonially together with them and take care of their expenses, so that they may have their heads shaved. Then everyone will know that there is nothing to the rumors they were told about you, but that you are walking orderly and you are also keeping the Law. So rather than claiming that the GB have gone off track, I believe they are continually getting more and more ON track. I believe they naturally started partly off-track as would be expected with a very eschatological Russell and a very legalistic Rutherford. But all the while, it was the right kind of heart condition being attracted to and joining into the religion -- a religion with a greater focus on the type of person we ought to be for Jehovah, for ourselves and for one another. This was much like the form of Judaism that naturally made persons fit for transformation into Christianity. Legalistic Judaism was like a tutor leading to Christ. But we must still be transformed. Paul played both sides in order to win more persons over to Christ. To Jews he became a Jew. To Greeks he became a Greek. Still the core of the religion itself is one that does perhaps the best job of all religions in fighting the machinations of the Devil: avoiding taking one side over another in politics and war, pointing out the unchristian influences on supposedly Christian traditions, and pointing out the value of Christian morality, and unity of purpose in preaching, meeting together, etc. To me these are the most important things. Granted the Pharisaism still keeps us hanging on to rules (like turning in time so that our right hand and our left can distinguish different types of Christian service, and misuse of the two-witness rule so that mercy and protection of children has often been sacrificed, etc.). And eschatology will keep rearing its head now and then, too. But these things are getting better over time, getting more on-track, not off-track. Pharisees don't want to be questioned, but we must all take our Christian duty and responsibility very seriously. We must question. We must make sure of all things. And we can only expect more questioning as more persons from all walks of life keep coming into the organization. I find that this forum is still a fair enough place to question and get feedback to help test whether those questions are on the right track.
  45. 4 points
    Anybody heard of poetic licence? Def. "The freedom to depart from the facts of a matter or from the conventional rules of language when speaking or writing in order to create an effect."
  46. 4 points
    Srecko Sostar

    THE CHIEF CORNERSTONE

    Hi, I also wonder, why @Foreigner giving me so much red arrows too ? ...... and not giving any comments on my post, just downvote reaction :))))) perhaps man only know to read and not to write. Even i can write with my poor English :))))))) Thank you very much, to all who reading my comments and have understanding and patience for my grammar
  47. 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.
  48. 4 points
    Why not ask Brother Morris, then the issue is resolved. Everything else is just embarrassing! April 19th is our MEMORIAL ceremony ❤ ♥ ☼ ♥ ❤ Thank you....
  49. 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
  50. 4 points
    God made Adam. He made Eve from Adam's rib. Must be a miracle.




×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

Terms of Service Confirmation Terms of Use Privacy Policy Guidelines We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.