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As Jesus was leaving the temple, one of his disciples said to him, “Look, Teacher! What massive stones! What magnificent buildings!” Mark 13:1 I never realized just how massive and magnificent these stones were, until doing a bit of research. From their quarrying to their installation, the construction feat of Herod the Great’s temple in Jerusalem still marvels the world. Cut from a limestone quarry above the ancient Temple Mount, some stones of the temple wall and retaining wall weighed up to 160,000 pounds while many a mere, but still impressive, two tons. Each of these stones is the reversed image of a typical framed piece of art, with a raised flat center and embossed edges, a masonry technique called “ashlar”. The larger of the ashlars are cornerstones weighing up to 80 tons, 40 feet long, 8 feet wide and 3 ½ feet tall. The temple building, fifteen stories tall, was made out of white marble, and embellished with gold. A hundred sixty-two pillars of grandeur formed from single blocks of white marble, lined the colonnade in the location of the “Royal Porch”. The historian Josephus remarked that the temple appeared as a shimmering “snowy mountain” in the sunlight. Within the inner court at the location of the altar of sacrifice, the stonework changed to unhewn stones following God’s decrees in Deut 27:4-8 and Exod 20:25 (Dan 2:34; 1 Pet 2:4,5). At its entrance to the inner court, a stone now housed in the museum in Istanbul has the following inscription concerning foreigners: "Let no foreigner enter within the parapet and the partition which surrounds the Temple precincts. Anyone caught [violating] will be held accountable for his ensuing death." (Ezek 44:6-9; 2 Chron 13:9) https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Deut+27%3A4-8%3B+Exod+20%3A25%3BDan+2%3A34%3B+1+Pet+2%3A4%2C5%3B+Ezek+44%3A6-9%3B+2+Chron+13%3A9+&version=NIV Herod enlarged the footprint of Solomon and Zerubbabel’s earlier accomplishments to around 35 acres. What was his motivating factor for taking on such a tremendous project? He had established a reputation for enhancing many cities and building pagan temples, but Jerusalem was his capital and thus far, fell behind in works of achievements. Also, his reputation among the majority of the Jews was less than appealing; being known as a brutal tyrant appointed by, and upholding the Roman emperor, although he being a Jew. He heavily taxed the citizens to support his ambitious effort. Building the temple was an act of appeasement as “king of the Jews”, but more so, it appears to be the result of his insatiable desire to build upon his fame and legacy to follow. As Edomites of the lineage of Esau, Jacob’s brother, his family line converted to Judaism in the second century b.c.; yet, Herod’s luxurious life-style and appointment by Rome was unacceptable by the majority of Jews. On ,the one hand he insisted on Jewish priests to build the temple, but for political advantage he eventually appointed high priests from outside of the traditional Levitical priesthood to serve in the temple – a contradiction of the stone’s writings near the inner court. This man spearheaded what historians call the “Massacre of the Innocents” in his attempt to find and kill, the young Jesus – the “chief cornerstone” of the spiritual Temple of God and a perceived threat to his kingship. Herod, the rebellious hunter acting in the same manner as his Edomite descendants, was obsessed with keeping power at all costs; and it brought about his mental and physical ruin. Jesus was still a child when he died an excruciating death from chronic kidney disease and its complications. Matt 2:3,4,7,8,19,20 https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Matt+2%3A3%2C4%2C7%2C8%2C19%2C20&version=NIV “Do you see all these great buildings?” replied Jesus. “Not one stone here will be left on another; every one will be thrown down.” Mark 13:2 Herod’s massive stone legacy was attacked by the Romans and their siege engines, beginning in 66 c.e. and ending with complete destruction of the temple in 70 c.e. Today, we have an intriguing correlation to Herod, his tyranny and his desire to build a legacy in stone, manifested in the leadership of the Watchtower organization. We see again a spiritual progeny of Esau (Edom) building “Jehovah’s Mountain”, which is taught as the avenue for “God’s people” to stream in from the desolate places of Christendom. Mal 1:4;Obad 1:2-4; Jer 49:4; Heb 12:15-17; Rev 8:10,11 https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Mal+1%3A4%3BObad+1%3A2-4%3B+Jer+49%3A4%3B+Heb+12%3A15-17%3B+Rev+8%3A10%2C11+++&version=NIV Wt 55/12/15 In great numbers the inhabitants of the isles are hearing the call of the Right Shepherd, Jesus Christ, as they hasten to flee to Jehovah’s mountainlike ORGANIZATION. Would the chief cornerstone of God’s SPIRITUAL Temple call individuals to a deceiving stone imagery, under the pretense of offering “peace and security”? John 18:36; Rev 13:1,4-8,15;1 Thess 5:1-3 https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=John+18%3A36%3B+Rev+13%3A1%2C4-8%2C15%3B1+Thess+5%3A1-3&version=NIV The woman at the well in John 4 commented: “Our ancestors worshiped on this mountain, but you Jews claim that the place where we must worship is in Jerusalem.” “Woman,” Jesus replied, “believe me, a time is coming when you will worship the Father NEITHER ON THIS MOUNTAIN NOR IN JERUSALEM 22 You Samaritans worship what you do not know; we worship what we do know, for salvation is from the Jews. 23 Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in the Spirit and in truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. 24 God is spirit, and his worshipers MUST worship in the Spirit and in truth.” John 4:20-24 JWs, please consider the Watchtower 2016 No. 2 pp. 8-10 comment on these scriptures: “The Jewish temple was a tangible structure at a specific geographic location. But spirit and truth are not material, nor are they limited to any physical place. Thus, Jesus was explaining that true Christian worship WOULD NOT BE CENTERED IN OR DEPENDENT ON ANY MATERIAL STRUCTURE OR PHYSICAL LOCATION, whether Mount Gerizim, the temple in Jerusalem, or any other sacred place.” Now, notice the brief quip from this video about assembly halls entitled, “Caring for Centers of Pure Worship”: “The assembly hall is an educational center. This is A CENTER OF PURE WORSHIP for all the congregations that come. Taking care of JEHOVAH’S HOUSE is part of sacred service, even going back to the temple everyone had an assignment. They had someone open the doors, of course they also had someone maintaining things.” (Please read 1 Chron 23:28 to see who “everyone” refers to) https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1+Chron+23%3A28+&version=NIV In an off-handed way, Watchtower’s gathering places are compared to the early temple, as places of “sacred service” in “Jehovah’s House”. The only “house” sanctioned by God since the destruction of Jerusalem’s temple, is the anointed Body of Christ where spiritual sacred service is to be carried out by his priesthood. 1 Pet 2:5,9; 1 Cor 3:16,17; Eph 2:20-22; 1 Cor 3:9; Heb 3:6; 1 Pet 4:17; Rom 12:1; 2 Cor 9:12,13 https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1+Pet+2%3A5%2C9%3B+1+Cor+3%3A16%2C17%3B+Eph+2%3A20-22%3B+1+Cor+3%3A9%3B+Heb+3%3A6%3B+1+Pet+4%3A17%3B+Rom+12%3A1%3B+2+Cor+9%3A12%2C13++&version=NIV In this video, Wt. is basically telling JWs to forego their previous remark, and maintain “Herod’s” impressive buildings and pagan “shrines”. The organization has a large portfolio of them, as did Herod the Great. We can see a grim future for the anointed “living stones”/priesthood of the Temple of God residing under the spiritual progeny of Esau. Gen 25:30-33; Rev 17:7,12,13,18 Using their labor force, including all JWs, Watchtower’s “Herods” have built their TEMPLE IDOL, leaving God’s priesthood/stones misplaced and scattered unidentifiably, throughout the organization. Masked tyranny is one of the trademarks of deceit. It is employed effectively by false ‘kings of the Jews’ to construct not only their idol, but its wall of lies; all the while robbing God of His living stones who fail to join the chief cornerstone and Head of the true Temple, Jesus Christ. Obadiah 1:8-10; Matt 21:42; Acts 4:11,12; 1 Pet 2:7,8 https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Gen.25%3A30-33%3B+Rev.17%3A7%2C12%2C13%2C18%3B+Obadiah+1%3A8-10%3B+Matt+21%3A42%3B+Acts+4%3A11%2C12%3B+1+Pet+2%3A7%2C8++&version=NIV Herod the Great never blinked an eye when it came to killing his family members if his authority seemed at risk; similarly, the governing body think nothing of it when authorizing their false “Gentile” priesthood, the elder body who “sits” in God’s Temple, to disfellowship - spiritually “kill” - their “fellow slaves”, the chosen anointed priesthood who may challenge both their authority and their teachings. 2 Thess 2:3,4; John 16:2; Matt 24:48-51; Obadiah 1:11; Rev 13:15; Rev 11:3,7 https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=2+Thess+2%3A3%2C4%3B+John+16%3A2%3B+Matt+24%3A48-51%3B+Obadiah+1%3A11%3B+Rev+13%3A15%3B+Rev+11%3A3%2C7&version=NIV Jesus said, “When you enter a house, first say, ‘Peace to this house.’ 6 If someone who promotes peace is there, your peace will rest on them; if not, it will return to you. 7 Stay there, eating and drinking whatever they give you, for the worker deserves his wages. Do not move around from house to house. Luke 10:5-7 Herod hunted down Jesus going house to house wanting to destroy him; similarly today, this sly hunting technique has effectively captured the anointed “firstfruits” into the Beast /organization using basic truth. Once caught, he liberally feeds them lies from the Harlot’s mouth. We know God allows this period of testing by Satan, just as He did with Job. Job 1:12; Luke 22:31; Mal 3:1-4 https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Job+1%3A12%3B+Luke+22%3A31%3B+Mal+3%3A1-4 + &version=NIV Watchtower’s counterfeit Zion is doomed to fall. “Jehovah’s mountainlike organization” and its wall of lies is crumbling quickly and will soon become dust. Ezek 13:1-16; Zech 4:7;Rev 8:8 https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Ezek+13%3A1-16%3B+Zech+4%3A7%3BRev+8%3A8+++&version=NIV “Tell us, when will these things happen? And what will be the sign that they are all about to be fulfilled?” “When you see ‘the abomination that causes desolation’ standing where itdoes not belong—let the reader understand—then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains.” Mark 13:4,14 As for “Jerusalem”, the city gone apostate, its Temple wall or protective defense of Truth has already been breached by a “Gentile” army, which upholds the Harlot/governing body’s lies. Job 1:10; Ezek 38:10,11,14-16;Rev 9:1,3,4,7 This “Herod” uses his delegated “Gentiles” to trample down the Temple – a Beast that is the very fabric holding the wall of demonic expressions in place. Dan 7:23; Matt 24:15; Rev 16:13,14 When Jesus told his disciples that the stones of the early temple would be thrown down by the Romans, I can imagine how difficult it was to comprehend his words, since its striking beauty and mass appeared invincible; yet it happened. Over the last 100 or so years, a new “temple” of “hewn stones” and a “wall” of lies with its detestable sacrifices, has grown and surrounded the already scattered and unused “living stones”. Mal 1:6-8; Dan 11:31; Isa 28:7,8; Rev 20:7-9 https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Job+1%3A10%3B+Ezek+38%3A10%2C11%2C14-16%3BRev+9%3A1%2C3%2C4%2C7%3BDan+7%3A23%3B+Matt+24%3A15%3B+Rev+16%3A13%2C14%3B+Mal+1%3A6-8%3B++Dan+11%3A31%3B+Isa+28%3A7%2C8+%3B+Rev+20%3A7-9++&version=NIV I hope, JWs, that you can perceive this. Pearl Doxsey: “In the first Century, the Temple was already under the dominion of the Romans, before either attack on Jerusalem. So too today (Dan.7:25; Rev.13:7; 9:3,5,10; Matt.5:13). The point at which the first assault by the Gentiles occurs today, is when the faithful anointed, are "killed", or, disfellowshipped/expelled (John16:2; Isa.66:5; 2Chron.13:9). This is comparable to the first century, and it's temple's "wall" being breached at the first siege (Isa.5:5; Ps.80:12; 89:40; Prov.24:31). Today, not all of the anointed Temple, are made powerless with this first breach. That complete collapse of "Jerusalem" is yet to come (Dan.12:7). This "wall" today, (Matt.21:33; Neh.1:3; 2:17) was a defensive boundary (Job1:10) for the "Temple" (1Cor.3:16; 1Pet.2:5; Eph.2:21,22) and all the unsealed priests (both invited leaders and invited followers/Steward and domestics) within it. Once the “wall” is initially breached (Rev.8:10,11; 13:1; 9:1,3; Job 30:14) by the spiritual "weapons" the false prophet gives to the Gentiles (deceptive doctrines, lying arrangements, illicit power and false authority Rev.9:1,2,3,7; 13:2,11,12,14,15; 16:13,14; 2Thess.2:9,10; Hosea4:6; Dan.8:24 (Rev.13:12); Luke21:24; Rev.11:1,2), (1st Century-- Matt.27:1,2; John18:30,31; 19:12,15; Luke23:2) The previous defensive “wall” no longer protects the invited priests within it (Ec.10:5,6,7; 2Thess.2:4; Ps.82:6). Once the breach expels those who take a stand for truth, the stage is then set for the demise of the ENTIRE temple, ...INCLUDING THE “HARLOT” (Ec.10:8; Isa.47:10; Dan.8:13; 11:13). The second siege is the point after which all have had the opportunity to "flee" apostate Jerusalem. Once you see the faithful trampled upon, you know that "Jerusalem" is "surrounded by encamped armies" of Gentiles, and it is time to FLEE (Luke21:20,21,22).” That time is now, JWs! Seek the true Mountain of God, the true Zion where Christ is the cornerstone and worship is in “spirit and truth”. God’ true Temple is His handiwork,(Eph 2:10,20-22; 1 Cor 3:16,17) not the work of men who are obsessed with obtaining your money and slavery to build their temple. Someone on a forum pointed out the covert meaning behind the chosen address of Warwick’s “Bethel” – 1 Kings Drive. The book of 1 Kings concerns the building of Solomon’s temple; yet the conglomerate temple the GB has built is an IDOL, diverting your attention from the true Temple in God’s anointed priesthood. https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Eph+2%3A10%2C20-22%3B+1+Cor+3%3A16%2C17&version=NIV Watchtower 2017/10 “Today, millions of people worship Jehovah. They are happy to give him their “valuable things,” such as their time, energy, and material resources. In this way, they support Jehovah’s great spiritual temple.” Since when does a “spiritual temple” that “WOULD NOT BE CENTERED IN OR DEPENDENT ON ANY MATERIAL STRUCTURE OR PHYSICAL LOCATION,” need another's "time, energy and material resources”? (Wt 2016 No. 2) God’s “valuable things” are his “special possession” (1 Pet 2:5,9) and His faithful sheep who listen strictly to the words of Truth from the cornerstone of His True Temple. 1 Pet 2:7,8; John 13:20 https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1+Pet+2%3A7%2C8%3B+John+13%3A20 + &version=NIV “The God who made the world and everything in it is the Lord of heaven and earth and does not live in temples built by human hands. And he is not served by human hands, as if he needed anything. Rather, he himself gives everyone life and breath and everything else." Acts 17:24-25 Pearl Doxsey: “First the ‘wall’…Then the Entire ‘Temple’” “Wall/Christ’s Side” 4womaninthewilderness “The day of the Lord is near for all nations. As you have done, it will be done to you; your deeds will return upon your own head. 16 Just as you drank on my holy hill, so all the nations will drink continually; they will drink and drink and be as if they had never been. 17 But on Mount Zion will be deliverance; it will be holy, and Jacob will possess his inheritance. 18 Jacob will be a fire and Joseph a flame; Esau will be stubble, and they will set him on fire and destroy him. (Jer 23:29; 5:14; Rev 11:5; Hos 6:5;1 Cor 3:13) There will be no survivors from Esau.” The Lord has spoken. Obadiah 1:15-18 https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Jer+23%3A29%3B+5%3A14%3B+Rev+11%3A5%3B+Hos+6%3A5%3B1+Cor+3%3A13&version=NIV
What follows is my partial response to a letter, which accurately expressed and represented the tribulation now being experienced, by many. - - - - - - - My response: I am so very glad that you contacted me. Please read the scriptures as you come to them. The central body of learning which I offer you, is found within them. Regarding the links, I hope you will return to them in a second reading, to go into more depth about my statements and cited scriptures. I will go right to one comment you made, because if I don't address it first, all that follows may not have value to you. You said; "I wanted to ask is this; since you are in contact with other anointed Christians, are all of your anointed associates a product of the Watch Tower Society? That is, are there not others, outside of the Society, that have been called? Since I view many of the new and current views of the Society to be an apostatizing, I would tend to question the provenance of all anointed issuing forth from that source." The best way to address your concerns about anointed former members of the "WT", is to give you some facts for your own consideration... Satan has demanded to "sift" each Chosen one (Luke 22:31; 1Pet.4:12; James 5:10-11; Job 1:8,12; John15:20; Rev.12:10; 1John2:14) by using his "world" (1John5:19; John15:18) of the Jewish system (John8:22-23), against them... [to see the identity of that "world"/"system" of the scriptures that does the persecuting , (See: Greek- system/arrangement/adornment): The Chosen must be subjected to the same tests and trials which Jesus endured. They accomplish this by following closely, the exact pattern of his example, symbolized by his "path"... (John16:28; 14:28, 6, 4; Luke 9:23; Rev.14:4 B; Heb.13:13; 2Cor.1:5; Phil.3:10; Rom.6:5; 1Pet.2:21), ...up to the capacity which each one is able to endure them (1Cor.10:13). If they take the same full course of Christ, they can reach the Father (John14:6; Matt.11:27; 18:10; Eph.2:6; Rom.8:9; Matt.5:8). Traversing the full course of Christs example, means that like Christ, the Kingdom candidates must start out in subjection to the influential power of the leaders of God's genuine people/the "world" (Gal.4:4; John1:11; Matt.15:24; 1John4:9; John1:12,10; 8:23), and faithfully conquer their hatred and opposition, as Christ did (John16:33; 14:30; 1John2:14-15; John8:40; Mark 9:31; John19:6-7; 15:18; Matt.24:9; John16:2; Mark 13:13). A glaring contrast appears, between the genuine path presented by Christ, when compared to the counterfeit "Peace and security" and "spiritual paradise" that is offered to anointed, by the "WT" (1Cor.4:2,8-13; Rev.3:17-18). Accepting that false safe harbor, brings them under the "operation of error" -2Thess.2:9-12; Col.2:8; Rev.13:10; Luke 21:24 . The flimsy and vain protection they offer (Rev.6:15-16) is a lie... a snare, sourced with Satan (Matt.16:21-23; Luke12:19-20; 2Thess.2:9-11; 1Thess.5:3-4, 6; 1Pet.5:8) (Rev.16:13-15; 1Tim.4:1). This demonic delusion is designed to lull Gods Chosen into spiritual sleep, and prevent them from ever completing their gamut of faithfulness against that "safe harbor"/lie/apostate nation of God (Eze.13:10-14; Jer.23:16-17; 8:11; 6:13-15; Rev.16:21; Ps.18:13; 147:17; 1Thess.5:3) (Eph.5:6,11; 2Pet.3:10; Jer.13:26; Rev.17:16-17; Nahum 3:5; Jer.51:25; Rev.8:8; Zech.4:7) (Rev.11:3,5; Jer.5:14; Hosea 6:5; Rev.16:8; Jer.23:29; Matt.10:20) Satan's snare is camouflaged by a counterfeit Mount Zion (Rev.14:1). They claim that their "mountain-like organization" (Zech.4:7;Jer.51:25; Rev.8:8), is the fulfillment of Isa.2:1-2 ... even though the next verse reads (Isa.2:3); "The law will go out from Zion, the word of the Lord from Jerusalem.". Although they claim that the "governing body" are representatives of Zion; they also claim that those men are fallible. To ascribe fallibility and a lack of spirit-inspiration to Mount Zion (and, "the word of the Lord"), is blasphemy. Additionally, the Organization's heirarchy of "overseers" made up of spiritual Gentiles (Rom.2:28-29)), is an impersonation of the spirit-directed Body of Christ (Rev.13:15) (John20:22,21)... both due to be revealed and exposed in the time of the end (Isa.28:17;Nahum 3:5; 2Thess.2:8). Naturally, one could not complete the course of Christ, unless they were surrounded by the same circumstances and challenges, and offered the same "path". I submit to you on the basis of the collective experiences of all present and sober anointed ones, that the "WT" is the only place they can come under the dominion of apostate religious leaders, who authentically lead, represent, and are, "God's chosen people" (Isa.43:21; 1Pet.2:9-10) (Luke12:42,45-48), such as those who persecuted Christ (Matt.15:24; 20:18-19; John19:11; 1:11). The various erroneous doctrines sourced in "Christendom" cannot successfully subvert and take captive (Col.2:8), those who have been anointed by God's spirit (1John2:20,27). Only the "WT" has succeeded in misleading (Matt.24:24-25; Luke 21:24; Rev.13:10,7) and "killing" them (Rev.6:11; 11:7), and prophecy tells us why, and how. Therefore, those anointed who are waking up from the "WT", (Mark 13:34; John10:2-4; Isa.42:16; 49:9) (2Cor.6:17; Rev.18:4; Matt.24:15-16) should not so much be viewed as tainted, but rather, as being tested (1Cor.3:12-15) and refined (Zech.13:9; Mal.3:1-3). Yet I will tell you, that when I was anointed by God through Christ, it was just previous to my first contact by the "WT". I was not a "JW" at the time of my anointing. It has been made clear to me by Christ, that the immediate contact by, and joining the Organization which ensued after my anointing, was my initiation into my gamut of testing in the pattern of Christ. We are clearly told that God's genuine priesthood in the time of the end, require refining from defilement/wormwood. (Mal.3:1-3, Eze.22:30; Zech.3:1,3-4,8; Rev.3:17-18; 13:7; Dan.8:11-13; 11:36; 2Thess.2:4; Mark 13:14) (Rev.10:10; 8:10-11; Jer.23:15) That would not be necessary, if they were not coming from a place of spiritual and doctrinal defilement (Rev.2:20). Having addressed your question about the authenticity of anointed who are now regarded as "apostates" from the "WT", (Mark 13:13; John16:2; Matt.25:6; Heb.13:13; Rev.11:3,7-10; Luke 17:33,37) and their reliability as trustworthy priests (Mal.2:7)... ...It cannot be taken for granted (1John4:1; 1Tim.4:1; Rev.16:13-16), that all ex-"JW" chosen ones are sources of "the proper food at the proper time" (Luke12:42). Scripture exhorts and equips us, to discern this on an individual basis, determined through what is offered (Matt.7:20; Luke 6:43,45) (LINK). Of the number of anointed who have obeyed Christ (Matt.24:16; Rev.18:4), not all are being fully refined, nor offering "the proper food at the proper time". Yet a few, are. I hope you have at least determined that a period of unfaithful ignorance, is not equivalent to permanent uselessness (Zech.13:9; Rom.9:27-28; Isa.65:8; Jer.3:21-22; Isa.22:12; Rev.11:3). With this in mind, I will respond as best as I am able to various points you raise in your letter, and if there is one that I neglect, please let me know. Because of my responding before to others who have written to me, there will be some points for which I have and will, provide a *link*. The link will contain deeper and further scriptural information on the subject at hand. I hope you will not view such references as an impersonal response, because I will tailor such references as close as possible to my best appraisal of your need, and great care has gone into making the scriptural information contained at each *link*, thorough, relevant, and substantial. Parts of an article may seem irrelevant to you, but if the *link* is cited, there is something of import in the article, that does relate. I hope you can extend the needed patience in this regard. I can see from your comments, that you are relatively new to the writings at my Blog. For this reason, what follows is a Bible course of study, tailored to the individual needs expressed in your letter. Those needs are actually becoming more common among those who write to me, so my response to you will be helpful to many. I'm sure you will need to divide the material into segments. I hope you will take your time, and attend each section with as careful attention as was given to it's composition. Again, if any coverage of a topic is found lacking for you personally, I am eager to address the need. In addition to tending to you, it will also help supplement the overall resources offered at the Blog. - ONE - - - - - - - - - - - - - - First I will say that I relate to much of your expressed experiences, while within the "Watchtower". I was in from 1975, until my disfellowshipping in 2011 for "causing divisions" (Luke 12:51; John7:43; 10:19-20). According to prophecy, the distressing "cognitive dissonance" with "WT" doctrine which you mention, initially plagues the anointed who are capable of repentance, to be followed by it breaking out upon the "rest" [symbolized in Revelation, as "earth, sea, trees" (Rev.7:3; 8:7;Zech.13:9)]. This is a new thought to those coming out from the "WT"... specifically... that the Great Tribulation is spiritual, not physical. (Luke21:25; Isa.17:12; Joel 2:1-2; Rev.9:2-3; 13:1) (LINK). The Greek word for "tribulation" is G2347 thlípsis – properly, pressure (what constricts or rubs together), used of a narrow place that "hems someone in"; tribulation, especially internal pressure that causes someone to feel confined (restricted, "without options") and carries the challenge of coping with the internal pressure of a tribulation, especially when feeling there is "no way of escape" (mentally "hemmed in"). Luke19:43; Hosea 2:6; Mark 15:17; Eze.28:23-24 You speak of the evident "confusion" (meaning of "Babylon") which is manifested by these vacillating doctrines of the "WT". Yes, this is also what the Bible refers to as "shifting sands", "churning sea casting up mire and mud" ("waters" that lack clarity -Eze.34:19), and "shifting shadows" (darkness that keeps changing), which the Bible indicates would identify the false prophet/wicked steward, who was due to arrive with dominion over the Chosen, in the time of the end. (Matt.24:24-25; 1Tim.4:1; Rev.13:13-16; 13:11,14-15; 19:20; 14:8; Jer.51:7) In contrast, those priests who faithfully represent Christ by teaching his truth (Matt.7:24; Rev.22:1; James 1:17), would have immovable consistency (John15:16; Rom.3:4 B). - TWO - - - - - - - - - - - You then speak of a job that took you away from "WT" indoctrination for a time, and upon your return, you perceived a discrepancy between past and present teachings. You cite the futility of learning tenets and teaching them, only to later be told that they are outdated and obsolete. What you are observing, is just what the Bible foretold about the teachings of this particular religious empire which holds captive, the anointed. I think you will recognize the connection with prophecy, if you understand the interpretation of the symbolic "three" "froglike expressions" of Rev.16:13. A frog goes through many changes as it develops from an egg to an adult. If we were to constantly observe it's development, we would not clearly notice it's transformation. If we were to remove ourselves from observing its development, only to return at a much later time, we may not even believe that it was the same creature. Gradual transformation from accepted truths, to accepted lies, is a tactic of Satan. - THREE - - - - - - - - - - - I am extremely sorry for the loss of your daughter. I can only imagine the heartache. Yet please know that you are not alone in experiencing loss of children. I understand that it is not the same as physical death... but it is now common for many to lose their children in other ways, due to the organization. I have lost two daughters. One is still captive and zealous in the organization, and I have not had contact with her, in years. The other was so damaged by the "elders", that she went off the deep end, into sin, drugs, and mental illness. She blames all of her problems, on my raising her in the Organization. She despises me for it. Our pain might cause us to lash out at God (Rev.16:11) (Job 1:22). But if we stop to consider that loss of children, cooling of love, family conflict, and many other distresses, were all a part of Christ's confiding to his disciples, what we must expect of these times in which we are. He gave such warnings, in the hope that we would not be overcome, but rather, would recognize the reality of our spiritual circumstances and our place in the time-line of prophecy. The "Great Tribulation", is just that. It is the greatest spiritual oppression, to ever arise upon Christians. If it's Satanic deceptive powers were not limited by God, even the Chosen could not be saved from it (Luke 18:26-27;Matt.24:22,13). Although it may seem like stale bread... the observing of such fulfillment **among the authentic Chosen, IS an indication of the approaching End (Luke 21:28-31; Mark 13:19-20,28-36; 1Cor.15:24-25; Ps.110:1-2; Rev.17:14). - FOUR - - - - - - - - - - - Ec.7:7 reads; "Surely oppression destroys a wise man’s reason, And a bribe debases the heart." I deeply regret how all your oppression has impacted your wife. Even the wise can lose their sanity when tribulation becomes severe. I myself, was driven to an attempt of suicide. But I hope that you will not give up in your trying to understand the bigger picture of our present reality; Because with that understanding, comes a way out. Once your hold on truth is firm, you may be able to comfort and assist your wife to that same freedom. I am not saying that full healing from the loss of a child can come in this life. But I assure you that hope and peace are within reach, for those who do not give up (Matt.7:7; 24:13; John14:27). Regarding your comment about Christ's "return" and "invisible presence", please consider these scriptures... (Acts1:11; Rev.1:7; Heb.12:1; Matt.24:30; 16:4; Luke 17:20-21; Rev.3:3; 1Thess.5:2; 3:13; Jude 1:14; Rev.19:11,14; 17:14; 2Cor.10:3-5; 5:20; Matt.24:45; Rev.1:7; 6:9-11; 11:7) - FIVE - - - - - - - - - - - Lastly, you state; "I guess I lack an assured expectation of things hoped for. ". Please clarify for us, in your mind, what hopes we had, as well as the hopes to which "JW's" still cling. Were they not false hopes? These too, Bible prophecy, identified and foretold (2Thess.2:1-3; Luke 17:20-24) (Deut.18:20-22). What I am saying, is that it is not wrong for you to let go of the false hopes which we were previously given (Heb.13:14; Rom.8:25; 12:12)... as long as we replace them with authentic reason for hope. Regarding a premature expectation of Christ [and the reason why he seems to "delay" (Luke 12:45-46; Hosea 6:5; Hab.2:2-3)], these *links* may help. I hope I have covered all the points you raised, and have given you an ample start to learning and perceiving what God's Word has to say on those issues and subjects. As always, I am here for questions. I know my responses tend to be copious, but I must offer as much of what I have been given, as is possible, in my desire to be found faithful and diligent in feeding Christ's sheep... especially those who are in distress. In my own experience of regaining my spiritual sight, I remember the steps I had to go through, as I peeled away "WT" deception by means of spirit and truth, by the grace of God. I know that each puzzle piece is hard to fit into one's previous faith (Mark 2:22), unless the related concepts are also addressed. This is why I try to anticipate the same objections and questions which I myself went through during my process of being "set free". (John8:32) (Isa.49:9; Eze.34:14; Matt.24:16). Rather than leave such a problem to arise, I hope to smooth the path, by anticipating how a "WT" doctrine might cause one to stumble at a particular point. This is why I provide *links* to common objections or questions to the subject at hand. Yet each person is an individual, so if there is something not covered, just let me know. Thank you for your good questions. If you conclude that what is written here, is true; please heed it's guidance, and share it. If so, I hope you will also associate with our group, to afford yourself some comfort and support. Though we are few, we treasure our precious harmony of faith. (*links* can be found in this article on Pearl Doxsey’s blog) May God's spirit be with you, as you examine the wisdom of His guidance, found in His Word. Love in Christ, Pearl (Pearl Doxsey 4womaninthewilderness)