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Everything posted by TrueTomHarley

  1. There you have it, @admin and @The Librarian. I have denied it. I never claimed it in the first place. It has had no effect. The power transfer is complete. You two have plainly outlasted your usefulness. Please drop off the keys and forward all of the passwords that I need. I’ll take it from here. Look, Divergence, I really am no more than a frequent commentator. Same with @JW Insider (who I do not know) In his case, I think he was given some moderating powers. Not me. We don’t weigh in on the same sort of topics and I do not necessarily agree with him on what he does focus on. I wrote so many posts about opposers that I rearranged and dressed them up into a book form. Here is one of the chapters, about just who it is that opposes the worldwide brotherhood today:
      Hello guest!
  2. It is only fair to give warning. I think that I have picked up the style by now, (not easy to do) and I am mulling over introducing a new character in that vein—maybe “Sigmund Freudus” or something like that—to see if it will be taken as Allen.
  3. Fellow team members: As our first order of business, I recommend that we banish Mr. @admin and @The Librarian (that old hen)! Only then will our coup be complete!
  4. “Oh mother, tell your children not to follooooo True Tom’s decorum. Spend your life in sheer futility, Battlin’ villains on the World News Forum” @divergenceKO
  5. What a paranoid nutcase, someone who has become a self-fulfilling prophesy! If I didn’t know better, I would say he is one of Jack Ryan’s IMF secret agents. How did he get to be this way? Did the fellow, probably always quirky but also idealistic, once require readjusting, per 2 Corinthians 13:9-11, and someone too heavy-handed used a sledge hammer instead of a chisel? Surely the “people afraid” must be those found online, certainly not in the flesh at the Kingdom Hall, for this “fear” is not the spirit that exists at any Hall that I am aware of. If they are online, then they are murky. You don’t know who they are, regardless of what they may say. Yet if these are the ones you hang out with, you do nothing but feed into your confirmation bias, which seems well past the point of no return Nurturing that bias from online, my guess is that you project it on ones who you actually meet in person, because they are simply not that way in reality. The complaining spirit is yours, not theirs. The fear is yours, not theirs, that if you actually speak openly of your contempt for those taking the lead in the Christian Congregation, they will immediately apply to you the verse about gangrene—diseased tissue that is beyond the point of healing, and start thinking of how one must deal with gangrenous tissue. (2 Timothy 2:17) And does newbie @Sean Migos think that he can find things “spiritually uplifting” here? Provocative, yes, newsworthy sometimes, even thoughtful in places (though not this one). But for what is truly spiritually uplifting, one must search within the context of the congregation, “a pillar and support of the truth.” (Not to discourage Sean, of course, who states his case well, but just to serve as a reality check) There was that plea from JTR on what was to be found in the Love Never Fails convention. After attending, I thought of the discussion of what love is, per 1 Corinthians 13, specifically how it covers a “multitude of sins”—whether they be yours or those of others. But I also anticipated the reaction: “Yeah, I’ll start when they start.” I fear the heart has become too hardened for any of that counsel to sink in.
  6. If proverb is so new, i doubt that children of those time had knowledge what the communism is :))))) I threw in “old” to place the proverb in Soviet times, where it belongs. Surely they knew what ice cream was.
  7. The theory is that the GB gets weekly feedback from each congregation through the circuit overseer’s report. That’s pretty good feedback, actually, and compares well with even many democratic lands, where the wealthy people in power have virtually no clue as to how their poorer subjects live. More than “no clue,” they often have no interest. That is not true with the GB. If they cannot literally put themselves in the shoes of those that they shepherd, they certainly come a lot closer than any form of human government. The theory is also that “the people will be taught by Jehovah,” not by a popularity contest of the people. Besides, each time there is a change in wording or practice, your side is wont to claim that it is done for legal reasons. Thus, your own assumption is that they do listen to “the people.” The old Russian proverb says: “Ask the children what they want for dinner, and they say: ‘ice cream.’ They get beetroot soup because they live under communist rule, and not a democracy.” What is democracy, H.L. Mencken says, but “the pathetic notion that individual ignorance adds up to collective wisdom?” If that is true with one brand of human government, it will certainly be true with a government where “the people will be taught by Jehovah.” You just want them to be taught by yourself and your friends.
  8. Few things aggravate like being in service and the householder tells you how you can’t earn salvation through good works. Say: “Well, the good works can’t hurt, can they?” Let him try to assert that they do. If they get truly condescending, sloughing you on the basis that they’re Christian (as though you are not), I have even been known to say: “Only a Christian would do what I am doing. Frankly, I’m a little surprised that you are not doing it yourself.” Watch that smug smile fade. I mean, it is fine to decline conversation—more people do than don’t—just not on that basis. It’s a little dicey. Use it very sparingly, only when richly deserved, and probably not even then, for it is not exactly an example of turning the other cheek. Duh. Every Witness knows that they are not earning anything in their house-to-house ministry. But it is like the mirror that you put under the nose of someone lying prostrate. If that mirror doesn’t fog up, I don’t care how many people tell me that the person is alive—he’s dead. It is the same way with faith. Besides, it is been there/done that as regards trying to earn life. That is what the Mosaic Law was all about. “You must keep my statutes and my judicial decisions; anyone who does so will live by means of them,” said God of that Law. (Leviticus 18:5.) You could even say that God had set them up for failure, since it was not possible for imperfect persons to keep that perfect law, and he knew it. Of course, you don’t say it, because the purpose of that Law was to direct them to something better—that they would not have seen the need for before. It was setting them up for the real life. That’s what Paul means about the Law being a tutor: “However, before the faith arrived, we were being guarded under law...looking to the faith that was destined to be revealed. Consequently the Law has become our tutor leading to Christ,that we might be declared righteous due to faith. But now that the faith has arrived, we are no longer under a tutor.” - (Galatians 3:23-25) As they trod a path back and forth to offer up sacrifices for their sins, it would occur to a remnant of them that something more permanent would be nice. They couldn’t earn life by following Law. They were flawed. It was beyond them. What they needed was forgiveness for sin, not a just a continual reminder of them via their price tag. As to being “guarded under law,” the Law gave them plenty to do and kept them off the streets where they might get into mischief with the rowdy neighbors. And so there is the New Covenant, to replace the old Law Covenant [Old and New Testaments, in most Bibles] The old covenant is between God and Israel, mediated by Moses, and inaugurated through the sacrificial blood of animals. The new is between God and spiritual Israel, mediated by the Son, and inaugurated through his own shed blood. The name “Israel’ is even retained—only the identity of those who occupy the slot has changed—those who “contend with God,” as the name means.. It is now “the Israel of God,” (Galatians 6:16) since “not all who descend from Israel are really ‘Israel.’” (Romans 9:6) Paul waits until he writes to Christians in Jerusalem [Letter to the Hebrews] before he draws all the parallels. They were at “ground zero.” They were in the host city. Three pilgrimages took place there each year—there occasions when the magnificent temple and even the entire city would be abuzz. Meanwhile, the Christians there were meeting in private homes, not the big glorious temple. Did they suffer an inferiority complex? If you had been a believer anywhere else, you would not have had that contrast for someone to rub into your face, but in Jerusalem you did have it. It took its toll. After a furious spurt of early activity, the ministry of those Christians had cooled off. “For although by now you should be teachers, you again need someone to teach you from the beginning the elementary things of the sacred pronouncements of God, and you have gone back to needing milk, not solid food,” the apostle writes at Hebrews 5:12. They are in some spiritual danger. If you don’t keep forward motion on the bicycle, you fall off. “Beware, brothers, for fear there should ever develop in any one of you a wicked heart lacking faith by drawing away from the living God...so that none of you should become hardened by the deceptive power of sin. For we actually become partakers of the Christ only if we hold firmly down to the end the confidence we had at the beginning.” (3:12-14) Paul draws upon their knowledge of mutual history. Sure, God, led the forefathers out of Egypt, he says, but he afterwards cast off those “testing” him, those “provoking” him, those “always going astray” despite their having seen his works for 40 years—those who gave in to “lack of faith” and became “disobedient.” (3:7-19) He ups the ante significantly when he speaks of those who accept, but then reject, the free gift: “For as regards those who were once enlightened and who have tasted the heavenly free gift and who have become partakers of holy spirit and who have tasted the fine word of God and powers of the coming system of things, but have fallen away, it is impossible to revive them again to repentance, because they nail the Son of God to the stake again for themselves and expose him to public shame.” (6:4-6) Not to worry, though. He is talking tough, but it isn’t to them: “But in your case, beloved ones, we are convinced of better things, things related to salvation, even though we are speaking in this way. For God is not unrighteous so as to forget your work and the love you showed for his name by ministering and continuing to minister to the holy ones.” (6:9-10) He just hopes that they will pick up the slack: “But we desire each one of you to show the same industriousness so as to have the full assurance of the hope down to the end, so that you may not become sluggish, but be imitators of those who through faith and patience inherit the promises.” (6:11-12) He helps them as he points out that the fantastic temple and the high holidays are not the real thing—they are things that go hand in hand with the Law that has become “obsolete,” is “growing old,” and is, in fact, close to “vanishing away”—which it did, just a few years later when Romans destroyed that temple in 70 C.E. It never had been the real thing. It had been the pattern of the real thing. These “men [the Jewish priests] who offer the gifts according to the Law—[they] are offering sacred service in a typical representation and a shadow of the heavenly things.” Those Christians in Jerusalem had the real thing—big temple notwithstanding. Even “Moses, when about to construct the tent, was given the divine command....‘See that you make all things after their pattern that was shown to you in the mountain.’” (8:4-5) They had the New Covenant, not the Old. Paul refers to how it was foretold through Jeremiah (31: 31-34): “Look! The days are coming,’ says Jehovah, ‘when I will make with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah a new covenant.... I will put my laws in their mind, and in their hearts I will write them....And they will no longer teach each one his fellow citizen and each one his brother, saying: “Know Jehovah!”...I will be merciful toward their unrighteous deeds, and I will no longer call their sins to mind.’” (8:8-12)
  9. Oh, that video of me telling a bad joke? It is a deep fake—fake news. Now, people— can we move on?
  10. Let us look at this complaint one more time so as to take in just how wicked it is. This is not to say that Jack himself is wicked, but when he posts up to ten such complaints in a single day, you have to wonder. Historically, nothing is more noble than volunteering. Though it could all be likened to “slave labor,” no decent human being does that. Jehovah’s Witnesses are also well-known for rebuilding the homes of their brothers in times of disaster. Presumably, Jack wants to undermine this as well. At any rate, those he hangs out with certainly do. All that remains in the following chapter of “TrueTom vs the Apostates!” is to substitute Jack for Victor: At the home of Victor Vomidog, an alarm panel light pulsed red. Victor read the incoming feed. It was serious. Someone was saying nice things about Jehovah’s Witnesses. Instantly, he swung into action. There was not a moment to lose. He opened his door and whistled. The media came running. “Witnesses are selfish!” he cried. “They only think of themselves! Why don’t they help everyone? Why do they just do their own people?” That evening, media ran the headline: “WHY DON’T THEY HELP EVERYONE?” But they had asked the wrong question. The headline they should have run, but didn’t, because they didn’t want to deal with the answer, was: “WHY AREN’T OTHERS DOING THE SAME?” The answer to the first question is obvious: Witness efforts consist of volunteers using their vacation time. Just how much time is the boss going to grant? So do it yourself, Victor! Organize your own new chums! Or send your money to some mega-agency where they think Bible education is for fools. Be content to see monies frittered away on salaries, hotels, travel, retirement, health care benefits, and God knows what else! Be content to see much of what remains squandered! It’s the best you can do—embrace it! Or at least shut up about the one organization that has its act together. The obvious solution, when it comes to disaster relief, is for others to do as Jehovah’s Witnesses do. Why have they not? There are hundreds of religions. There are atheists…aren’t you tight with them now, Victor? Organize them, why don’t you? They all claim to be veritable gifts to freedom and humankind. Surely they can see human suffering. Why don’t they step up to the plate themselves? They can’t. They are vested in a selfish model that runs a selfish world. Let them become Jehovah’s Witnesses and benefit from the Bible education overseen by the Governing Body, Plato’s and Sider’s dream brought to life. But if they stay where they are, they must look to their own organization or lack thereof. There’s no excuse that they should not be able to copy Witnesses. They have far more resources to draw upon. We’re not big enough to do everyone for free, and we don’t know how to run a for-pay model; we’ve no experience in that. Instead, other groups must learn how to put love into action, as we did long ago. C’mon, Victor! If all the world needs is to ‘come together,’ then see to it! We don’t know how to do that. People without Bible education tend not to get along. You make them do it! You don’t want to, or can’t, do large-scale relief, yet you want to shoot down those who do! What a liar!
  11. You never cease to disappoint me. You are the indian gift that keeps on taking.
  12. What a slime ball! My wife and I visited the zoo today. I discovered that for their habitat, conservation, and animal protection work they make use of scads of volunteers. I gathered them together, told them they were all exploited slaves, and they all quit. Then I went to the hospital and liberated all the slaves there. Then the libraries. Then the nursing homes. Then Meals on Wheels. It’s disgusting how these organizations use and manipulate people! Jack and I will not hear of it! Meanwhile, a closeby KH just had a massive remodel/build for a couple hundred K or so, with the aid of both skilled and unskilled volunteers, some of whom put in many hours and some few. One of the work overseers told of a neighbor who stopped by, learned of how it had been organized, and expressed amazement. His own church had burned to the ground a few years back. It took two years to begin planning reconstruction. The rebuilt church, hired out to a contractor, of course, ultimately cost them $5 million. This fellow was so impressed at what the brothers had organized and at the motivating power of faith. He didn’t even once grumble about “slave labor.”
  13. You are mistaken, Jack, because you know neither math nor the power of God. He was using non-Euclidean math.
  14. This is too much. It really is. One year Jehovah’s Witnesses pull the world postal system’s bacon out of the fire by purchasing millions of stamps for letters to the Bear. The next year their lunatic opposers do the same with letters to HQ! Citizens of the world owe a huge debt to JWs. Without them, the price of a postage stamp would now be $2.30. And the corker of it is, soon @James Thomas Rook Jr. will be firing off post after taunting post about how at Bethel they can warm themselves those cold upstate nights with boxcars full of letters to toss in the furnace!
  15. Possibly he is a spy for @Jack Ryan‘s friends, someone like the unstable woman that Jack issued a Special Report for when she was caught red-handed trying to destroy the life-work of her parents. When she was not lauded as a hero, as the friends assured her she would be, she subsequently became so depressed that took her own life. Or maybe they didn’t assure her that her parents wouldn’t be displeased. Maybe they just used her to further their own ends. It’s back in the archives somewhere. You’ll never find it. Possibly @The Librarian (that old hen) can dig it out. Ah! Here it is (my comment, to which you can go back to the post itself):
      Hello guest!
    Think it through as to whether you actually want to be here, Indiana. I’m not saying you shouldn’t. But they get pretty vile here, some of them. There are some with absolutely no love for God here, and some who love him only if they can define him in their own image. They are not ones to be persuaded. Make sure you are up for it.
  16. It is probably well if the attendants do not let him do this. Is he a pedophile? Does the 10-year old boy giving his first talk want to see himself on the World Wide Web? Don’t let him tell you that Jesus wouldn’t be so unloving so as to make him shut off his camera.
  17. The key here is to take one of Jack’s petulant posts and refashion it into something worthwhile.
  18. We do make uncomfortable people who don’t really care about spiritual things but somewhere in the back of their head is a nagging thought that they should. And we make uncomfortable those who assume that we are there to change their religion—and yet their religion has not put them on equal footing to discuss intelligently the Bible—they know almost nothing about it. (Very strange, when you think about it, since most simply assume that the Book provides their faith’s underpinnings) With some, judging from their quick response, this discomfort is nearly to the point of panic—just like an ordinary joe might panic at the thought of an encounter with the time-share salesperson. ”I have my own religion, and I am very happy with it,” they hastily say. ”Well, I’m not going to ask you to change it, and if I do you can say ‘no’” is my reply. “It’s just conversation.” I mean, they may not want to converse—more don’t than do— and if they don’t, that is fine, but I hate it to be for that reason. One conversation with a college student was interesting enough that I proposed coming back. “To what end?” he said. Nobody had ever replied to me that way before. So I told him my ideal scenario—that over the course of 100 weeks, I would call back 100 times for 100 conversations—during which he would learn the Bible from front to back, and I would learn some things, too—and on visit #100 I would ask him if he wanted to become a Jehovah’s Witness and then he could say “no.” Once again, it’s just conversation. I even asked him to play along on a practice session. I would ask him to become a Jehovah’s Witness, and he was to say “no.” He agreed to this. ”Would you like to become a Jehovah’s Witness like me?” I said. “No,” he replied. “See?” I said. “It’s easy. In the meantime you will learn the Bible and then you can better decide what you think about it” This is called the Dickens approach and it is suggested by the ending of “Tale of Two Cities.” In that ending Sidney Carton visits Charles Darney, a prisoner in the Bastille being held for execution during the French Revolution. He has determined to smuggle him out. Of course, he can only do this if he takes his place and tricks the guards—it has already been noted in the novel that he remarkably resembles the man in physical appearance. One by one he suggests to Darnay exchanging articles of clothing. Each time Darnay protests—he has no idea what Carton is up to. “What do you think you’re doing?” he objects. “Do you think you can break me out? It’s not possible to escape from here.” Each time Carton answers: “Did I say anything about escape? Wait until I mention escape and then say “no.” In this way he persuades the man to swap clothes, as though to humor him, though he knows not why. A strict application of the Dickens method in field service necessitates saying: “Did I say anything about you changing your religion? Wait until I ask that and then say “no.” I have done this, but it’s a little easier to phrase it as I did initially: “Well, I’m not going to ask you to change your religion, and if I do you can say ‘no.’” It comes across as less of a rebuke. It is important that your householder has not actually read “Tale of Two Cities,” for if he has, he may recall that after the clothing exchange is completed, Carton chloroform’s Darnay, calls the guard to say that his visiting friend was overcome by emotion and has fainted, and requests that he be carried out to the waiting carriage. If the householder points that out, tell him that you do not intend to copy that part of the ending—strictly speaking, that would require you to take his place and become a Catholic, Muslim, or Hindu, and to assume his car and house payment, which may be substantial. It is a favorite book of mine. Ruse completed, Carton later takes his place in the guillotine lineup. He is giving his life in behalf of his friend, and several times Jesus’ words are quoted as inspiration: “No man has love greater than this, that someone should surrender his life in behalf of his friends.” (John 15:13) Just before him in line is a scared 12-year old girl. She is willing to “die for her country” if it has been decreed that she must, but she cannot understand just how she could actually have been deemed to be such a threat to it. Her eyes widen as she discovers that her companion is not actually Darnay, but is someone giving his life for that man. Carton offers to take her hand, and thereby she finds the courage to face the terrible blade.
  19. There is something so childish about this complaint, as though Jack cannot imagine anything other than a grade-school moral primer, as though he is a petulant child himself. The Bible is a history of persons and their relationships with God. Some sought him. Some fled him. Some ignored him. Some never knew him. The history is a blend of each of these poles. If God has smashed everything that was wrong from Cain and Abel’s time on, we would not be here to talk about it. Thanks to Ray the Newbie for putting some meat on the bones that Jack hoped to shock everyone with.
  20. I take for granted that there will be exaggerating in such complaints. There always is. Oddly, while I have given many funeral talks, I have never given a wedding talk. The rationale may be: “Well, he’s dead. How much damage can TrueTom do?” I would never argue that the brothers are bastions of reasonableness at all times.

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