The Librarian

Is the UN preparing to attack Religion?

Recommended Posts

15 hours ago, JW Insider said:

The potentially heretical view is the claim that these men and only these men currently make up the fulfillment of the parable Jesus gave about the unfaithful slave. (Yes, it is also a parable about a faithful slave, but the primary focus and majority of content in the parable is about the unfaithful slave.)  Because then we would have a body of men who are not the apostles, wishing to be thought of as if they were apostles.

Understanding one's character and intent have yet to fail my views about certain people here. There is NO misunderstanding when it comes to subliminal message. But it’s good that one of your staunch supporters was brave enough to see through some of your commentaries.

Therefore, you are correct to define some of your comments inappropriate to this post!

I’m also glad to read the first part, of you changing your perspective, even though the last part was more of the same. But I’m also glad you admit your past observations and own up to the fallacies I made the generalization on.

However, the misconception owns your view about the GB continues in this sense. The GB has NEVER claimed to be Christ-like, Apostle like, or above anyone that has become a true “follower” of Christ. The GB are our equals in that sense. What makes the GB more to the eyes of the church are their RESPONSIBILITIES, they have volunteered their whole life for. They accepted that responsibility to be spiritual leaders, by God’s Grace as well as ours in the past. Acts 6:3 if these people were unworthy as you claim? They would not be sitting where they are at, now, plain and simple.

What gets some “witnesses” of today, is, the method of appointment. Who is more qualified to define the spirituality of an anointed? People with negative thoughts? People, that condemn their own church? Skeptics? People, that misrepresent scripture to benefit themselves? Those that cause strife and divisions? Those that are asking “more” of our spiritual leaders other than the “spiritual food at the proper time”, etc. Matthew 24:45. What, possible spirituality can these people contribute to a genuine church of God? What teachable moments can be gathered by a distorted soul?

NO! The GB has never asked anyone to glorify them as you claim! However, what can be said of “Bethelites” that contend superiority for having served at the Bethel House? What can be said of Elders, or regular pioneers, that feel that human emotion of superiority? So, that assumption of superiority for the GB falls short and contentious to those that choose to think that way. Those people distort their own concept of, superiority, and a calling! Acts 14:22, Phil. 1:1; Col. 1:1; Philemon 1

1 Timothy 1:1-2

 

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
12 hours ago, James Thomas Rook Jr. said:

You know... I am just sitting here .... minding my own business ... when on my 3rd monitor I see some guy in  three piece suit run by, and with his hair on fire, crying "heretic! Heretic! HERETIC!" !!

Yes, everything is a punchline to some, here, yet scripture fails them at every turn! Psalm 14:1-2

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, AllenSmith said:

Understanding one's character and intent have yet to fail my views about certain people here. There is NO misunderstanding when it comes to subliminal message.

Assuming your obfuscation is purposeful, I'll try to translate your apparent intent:

"I, AllenSmith, have never yet failed to understand the true character and intent when I view certain people here. To myself, I now understand that I had previously misunderstood the main thing that 'JWInsider' was saying, although since I will never actually admit a fault, be they ever so blatant to others, I will, instead, focus on the new claim that that I never misunderstood the subliminal message."

2 hours ago, AllenSmith said:

But it’s good that one of your staunch supporters was brave enough to see through some of your commentaries.

If you meant @Srecko Sostar, I have never seen this person as a staunch supporter. If you meant @Melinda Mills, then you probably missed the fact that she does not typically "support" my views in areas where they might differ from the Watchtower, and never staunchly even when she does. In this case, she merely pointed out the fact that I left out the word "not," because the sentence wouldn't have made any sense in context as it stood. But she was pointing out what I must have meant, not what she necessarily believes. I see she did "upvote" a comment or two of mine, and that is always a dangerous thing for people to do when you are around, since they will often have to brave your disapproval. You often convey this disapproval of any kind of support in a bullying manner and go after people for assumed sins just because they found something agreeable in a post of mine. I hope you will stop this kind of bullying. (I'm not saying that what other people do doesn't ALSO come across as bullying . . . [ahem..j.t.r..ahem] . . . but it's easier to take when it's cushioned with a sense of humor.)

2 hours ago, AllenSmith said:

Therefore, you are correct to define some of your comments inappropriate to this post!

Yes. It's true. I gladly admit that this post was not primarily about the differences in our view of the GB. Still, many JWs believe that the time will come when the UN will attack religion, and there is an associated assumption that this will result in a collapse of religion in some global sense, and will thus precipitate a specific attack on Witnesses which is thwarted by Jehovah, Jesus and the angelic hosts. This is supposed to be our lot between the great tribulation and Armageddon. We are told to expect that it means times of being cut off from communication with New York, and a need for almost unquestioning reliance on local leadership through the guidance of congregation elders. In some cases, we expect that some will be cut off from even that much association.  JWs want to feel prepared to face such a time without fear.

I don't think it's out of place, then, to discuss this entire supposed "UN episode" in the light of such expectations.

I don't feel right about discussing it unless I also disclose that I have my own questions about the readiness of many Witnesses to face such a scenario. Part of that is the strained relationship that I see many Witnesses have with their local elders, and others in the congregations in general. Part of that is what I see as an unhealthy and immature relationship of dependency on the Governing Body for almost every aspect of their spirituality and worship. For me personally, I must also deal with the fact that I look to the track record of the Governing Body in attempting to predict the meaning of scripture, and I realize that so far they have something like a 0% accuracy rating in everything ever predicted when it comes to fulfilled prophecy. So, just out of the honest need for full disclosure when I give an opinion, I will be forced to include some of my personal hesitance to accept these predicted scenarios as necessarily accurate.

But I should still have a right to an opinion, and you should have a right to yours, and a right to give counterbalancing evidence if you have any.

2 hours ago, AllenSmith said:

The GB has NEVER claimed to be Christ-like, Apostle like, or above anyone that has become a true “follower” of Christ.

Interesting. It's false to say they have never claimed this. But it's usually more subtle than an outright claim. Whether they claim it or not is immaterial. It's an impression that is given and never completely corrected. We could have a whole separate discussion on this topic.

2 hours ago, AllenSmith said:

The GB has never asked anyone to glorify them as you claim!

I never claimed they asked for anyone to glorify them. Please stick with the evidence, not stuff you make up.

2 hours ago, AllenSmith said:

However, what can be said of “Bethelites” that contend superiority for having served at the Bethel House?

They should feel no superiority for having served at the "Bethel House." No one should. I certainly don't. In fact, as you have pointed out yourself, sometimes serving at Bethel is a detriment to true spirituality.

  • Like 1
  • Haha 1
  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I really enjoy all of AllenSmith's comments ... seriously.

He has a perspective on life that is truly astonishing, and entertaining !

Scary, in a "Roseanne Roseannadanna" kind of way .... but astonishing and entertaining !

 

 

  • Haha 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ex-Bethelite: Part of that is what I see as an unhealthy and immature relationship of dependency on the Governing Body for almost every aspect of their spirituality and worship. For me personally, I must also deal with the fact that I look to the track record of the Governing Body in attempting to predict the meaning of scripture, and I realize that so far they have something like a 0% accuracy rating in everything ever predicted when it comes to fulfilled prophecy. So, just out of the honest need for full disclosure when I give an opinion, I will be forced to include some of my personal hesitance to accept these predicted scenarios as necessarily accurate.

There you go, it wasn’t that hard, was it. But it’s good that you now realize it’s only YOUR opinion on how other witnesses think about the GB and what they rely on. To you, Anna, JTR, and much more here DEMAND much more of our brothers than what is humanly possible. So, you are correct to suggest there are some that are uncharacteristic of having unity. Especially when you are speaking on behalf of all. Please! Enlighten Melinda on this famous crystal ball you have, and I will show you a spiritualist. 1 Timothy 4:1

 

Ex-Bethelite: But I should still have a right to an opinion, and you should have a right to yours, and a right to give counterbalancing evidence if you have any.

Once again, the one being “deleted” in the past for the whims of people like you was me. So, NO! My opinion has been silenced and deleted to protect people like you in the past. However, you think too much of yourself if you think my opinions are invalid and yours are. To the contrary, for over 3 years now, your condemnation of the Watchtower is frivolous and continues to be. Romans 3:8

 

Ex-Bethelite: Interesting. It's false to say they have never claimed this. But it's usually more subtle than an outright claim. Whether they claim it or not is immaterial. It's an impression that is given and never completely corrected. We could have a whole separate discussion on this topic.

Then you must be reflecting on your own wishes of a “false” application on your part. Either that? Or you are speaking about the wrong organization. But, obscuring the truth is what your best at.

Ex-Bethelite: I never claimed they asked for anyone to glorify them. Please stick with the evidence, not stuff you make up.

That is your and every ex-witness evidence, so NO! I’m not making up things that you are suggesting, and continue to suggest by your inappropriate comments and disdain about the GB. At least, JTR has the nerve to be truthful about his hatred of the GB, especially when you falsely claim NO prophetic fulfillment, why not you?

Ex-Bethelite: They should feel no superiority for having served at the "Bethel House." No one should. In fact, as you have pointed out yourself, sometimes serving at Bethel is a detriment to true spirituality.

Well, something we can agree on. You for being there, and me for knowing human conditions, and all its elements. Just like having to deal with spiritual matters when the time comes. ALL MEMBERS SHOULD BE SPIRITUALLY PREPARED TO TAKE ANY ROLE NECESSARY AS A UNIT OR FOR PERSONAL SALVATION. That message hasn’t changed since Christ. Philippians 3:4-11

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, AllenSmith said:

But it’s good that you now realize it’s only YOUR opinion on how other witnesses think about the GB and what they rely on.

Thank you for noticing that I have always considered my opinions here to reflect nothing more than my opinions here.

1 hour ago, AllenSmith said:

To you, Anna, JTR, and much more here DEMAND much more of our brothers than what is humanly possible.

I have noticed statements from JTR and Anna that actually state just the opposite. I've said it many times, too, that it really is humanly possible to make all the prophetic conjectures that you wish, and then just be humble about it and state that we really don't know for sure about these things we are conjecturing about. In other words, it's possible to make conjectures and be 100% right about everything we state as long as we are humble, discreet, and not presumptuous. The GB could have said that they don't know for sure, but that they believe the UN will attack religion for certain reasons, and then give those reasons. None of us would have the right to be dogmatic. We would always be 100% right, because we only stated that it was our current belief -- our opinion. Of course, I don't demand that we admit when we are just "conjecturing." But the Bible says it's the best course to avoid presumptuousness and the Bible recommends being faithful and discreet.

1 hour ago, AllenSmith said:

So, you are correct to suggest there are some that are uncharacteristic of having unity. Especially when you are speaking on behalf of all. Please! Enlighten Melinda on this famous crystal ball you have, and I will show you a spiritualist.

Your "word salads" imply so much that is incorrect that I won't bother to untangle them. But it is funny that you find a person who says none of us has a crystal ball, and that none of us should claim to have one, and then you claim that this person thinks he has a crystal ball.

2 hours ago, AllenSmith said:

Once again, the one being “deleted” in the past for the whims of people like you was me. So, NO! My opinion has been silenced and deleted to protect people like you in the past. However, you think too much of yourself if you think my opinions are invalid and yours are.

I didn't want you deleted and you didn't want you deleted. So you are like me in that regard. Someone went against the whims of people like you and me. However, you have repeatedly claimed that you have not been silenced because you merely had to create new versions of your name and new versions of several other supportive "characters" who can up-vote yourself and show derision to others. I agree with you that you have never actually been silenced. So this should not be an excuse for coming up with no evidence for your opinions. Your opinions are just fine. Many have been spot on. Some of mine have been merely opinions unsupported with evidence. Opinions on their own are not valid or invalid, just opinions. But if anyone shows evidence contrary to my opinion, I will ALWAYS adjust my opinion in favor of the evidence. This is one of those places where no one has to hold back in presenting either opinions or evidence or counter-evidence. So if you have evidence, great. But if you don't have any evidence, then please stop whining about how one or two of your "characters" were deleted for abusive behavior several years ago.

2 hours ago, AllenSmith said:

especially when you falsely claim NO prophetic fulfillment

I apologize. I was only thinking about prophecies associated with dates and time periods like 1878, 1881, 1910, 1914, 1915, 1918, 1925, the mid-70's, the end of the century, the generation, etc. But I admit that there is one "prophetic fulfillment" in another category that comes very close. It's the best example available. I'm referring to the one that Knorr "predicted" about the League of Nations rising again as the United Nations. This one was not originally from the Watchtower, but from Christendom, but still the Watchtower should get credit for choosing to repeat it.

2 hours ago, AllenSmith said:

Well, something we can agree on. You for being there, and me for knowing human conditions, and all its elements. Just like having to deal with spiritual matters when the time comes. ALL MEMBERS SHOULD BE SPIRITUALLY PREPARED TO TAKE ANY ROLE NECESSARY AS A UNIT OR FOR PERSONAL SALVATION. That message hasn’t changed since Christ. Philippians 3:4-11

Here, it seems, we really do agree! And this was the main point I was making, too.

  • Haha 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 hours ago, JW Insider said:

I'm referring to the one that Knorr "predicted" about the League of Nations rising again as the United Nations. This one was not originally from the Watchtower, but from Christendom, but still the Watchtower should get credit for choosing to repeat it. 

Knoor's Law: "No matter what happens ... SOMEBODY predicted it."

As far as TRUE predictions ...... it just was not .... us.

We do know, however, from GB member Stephen Lett, that (paraphrased) " ... there is more evidence of God's Kingdom on Earth now, than there is for gravity, and electricity."

... but for the life of me, I find it impossible to wrap my mind around that statement.

If Ah had stated that ... Ah could legitimately be involuntarily committed to a mental institution, and wear size 400 sleeves that tie in the back.

  • Haha 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ex-Bethelite: I have noticed statements from JTR and Anna that actually state just the opposite. I've said it many times, too, that it really is humanly possible to make all the prophetic conjectures that you wish, and then just be humble about it and state that we really don't know for sure about these things we are conjecturing about. In other words, it's possible to make conjectures and be 100% right about everything we state as long as we are humble, discreet, and not presumptuous. The GB could have said that they don't know for sure, but that they believe the UN will attack religion for certain reasons, and then give those reasons. None of us would have the right to be dogmatic. We would always be 100% right, because we only stated that it was our current belief -- our opinion. Of course, I don't demand that we admit when we are just "conjecturing." But the Bible says it's the best course to avoid presumptuousness and the Bible recommends being faithful and discreet.

This only proves your lack of understanding, with your own conjecture. As for Anna and JTR, I think there’s enough evidence out there to prove you wrong. But, as they defend your stance, I see where you would be obligated to defend them.

Ex-Bethelite: Your "word salads" imply so much that is incorrect that I won't bother to untangle them. But it is funny that you find a person who says none of us has a crystal ball, and that none of us should claim to have one, and then you claim that this person thinks he has a crystal ball.

I agree you use word salads to make every effort to come out looking good with your argument. Maybe someone else will buy what you’re selling? Just not me.

Ex-Bethelite: I didn't want you deleted and you didn't want you deleted. So you are like me in that regard. Someone went against the whims of people like you and me. However, you have repeatedly claimed that you have not been silenced because you merely had to create new versions of your name and new versions of several other supportive "characters" who can up-vote yourself and show derision to others. I agree with you that you have never actually been silenced. So this should not be an excuse for coming up with no evidence for your opinions. Your opinions are just fine. Many have been spot on. Some of mine have been merely opinions unsupported with evidence. Opinions on their own are not valid or invalid, just opinions. But if anyone shows evidence contrary to my opinion, I will ALWAYS adjust my opinion in favor of the evidence. This is one of those places where no one has to hold back in presenting either opinions or evidence or counter-evidence. So if you have evidence, great. But if you don't have any evidence, then please stop whining about how one or two of your "characters" were deleted for abusive behavior several years ago.

This is hilarious! The majority which is FALSE, but I think there’s enough evidence to prove you wrong once again. We can ask the librarian if it was just 1 or 2 or 28, or 100 times I was deleted, and my information erased to help people like you. Most recently, threatening to be “removed” by the librarian if I USE 1 specific word. And when you characterize abusive behavior that Anna, JTR, you, and many others contributed towards me? It just makes it more laughable lying about it and trying to justify the librarian’s actions of censorship, oppression, double standards, and much more. LOL!

Ex-Bethelite: I was only thinking about prophecies associated with dates and time periods like 1878, 1881, 1910, 1914, 1915, 1918, 1925, the mid-70's, the end of the century, the generation, etc. But I admit that there is one "prophetic fulfillment" in another category that comes very close. It's the best example available. I'm referring to the one that Knorr "predicted" about the League of Nations rising again as the United Nations. This one was not originally from the Watchtower, but from Christendom, but still the Watchtower should get credit for choosing to repeat it.

I understand your refusal to understand what prophecy means, and how you “deny” any of the dates mentioned by you just like any ex-witness out there, and how you blame the Watchtower for 1975 like Anna, JTR and every ex-witness out there that is blowing hot air to appease their erred perception, but tell me when did WW2, Korean War, Vietnam, Desert Storm, etc. become irrelevant in your eyes? Not to mention your misrepresentation of the Watchtower publicans to assert your false claims about those dates, only to appeal to the ex-witnesses at AD1914.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Is the UN preparing to attack Religion?

Just getting back to the main topic. The most relevant  prophetic statement I am aware of relating to this question is here:  

"And the ten horns that you saw and the wild beast, these will hate the prostitute and will make her devastated and naked, and they will eat up her flesh and completely burn her with fire.
For God put it into their hearts to carry out his thought, yes, to carry out their one thought by giving their kingdom to the wild beast, until the words of God will have been accomplished." Revelation 17:16-17.

Leaving aside extensive argumentation on the interpretation of these two verses, Jehovah's Witnesses understand this to be describing the destruction of false religion at the hands of its long-time partner, the political element of human society.

  • "The ten horns" = those "movers and shakers" within the political set up (as opposed to "vassal" states) at the time these events occur.
  • "The wild beast" = the earlier referred to "was but is not" conglomeration of nations we currently know as the United Nations of which the "ten horns" are a prominent part.
  • "The prostitute" = said "Babylon the Great", the world empire of false religion, destined for complete destruction at the hands of the political powers.
  • "Their one thought" = preservation of national sovereignty at all costs. There has always been a rather tenuous balance in this element of the religion/politics relationship. In fact, the false charge of "sedition" constitutes a prime weapon in the anti-Jehohvah's Witness strategy employed by false religion. It has been a main component of it's murderous schemes to eliminate servants of Jehovah with the enlistment of political muscle.(Compare John 19:15: "We have no king but Caesar") However, in striking similarity to the failure of Haman's schemes at the time of King Ahasuerus as described in the Bible book of Esther, false religion is "hoist on it's own petar", (to borrow a Shakesperean idiom). This will involve a remarkable feature in that the political elements (particularly those dominant UN partners, more inclined to veto than agree) participate in an unreserved delegation of authority to their political figurehead, currently identified as the UN.
  • "God put it into their hearts to carry out his thought" = the crux of this whole matter. Observers today may well detect evidence to support their view of a rising anti-religious trend in UN attitudes to religion. But there may equally be those who would choose to argue a completely opposite view. Not to be overlooked is the view held by false religion itself at the time of it's destruction. This is indicated at Rev:18:7 "I sit as queen, and I am not a widow, and I will never see mourning". Rev18:8 adds "That is why in one day her plagues will come".

The destruction of false religion at the hands of it's one time political allies will be something to shock this system of things to it's very foundations. It will open the world stage for "a tribulation such as has not occurred from the beginning of the creation that God created until that time" Mark 13:19. Those blessed with the 'abundant true knowledge' characterising these" last days" have a comprehension of the world scene that is very different from the many who remain in "darkness mentally and alienated from the life that belongs to God, because of the ignorance that is in them, because of the insensitivity of their hearts." Eph 4:19.

So in answer to the question, probably not, as a body, although godless elements have been in it's composition since it's origin. This event will come "as a thief in the night", a development indeed, but something precipitated by Jehovah, at a time of His choosing, once the "good news of the kingdom" has been preached in all the inhabited earth, for a witness. Then the end will come.

Now is not the time to bite the hand that feeds us!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There is a known thing going on behind the scenes, however, a majority of people do not know about such, I say this to you guys too as well as to Jehovah's Witnesses here, albeit, some people are aware of the situation hence the response from the Religious Movement seeking unity throughout the globe.

I am among those who know far too many things, the type of guy who is aware of the monster under the bed, so to speak. The only hint I can drop is money and oil as well as security and power at this point regarding nations, as for religion it is a conquest of peace and unity.

Keep your eyes on Israel and Saudi Arabia.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Gone Away said:

Is the UN preparing to attack Religion?

Just getting back to the main topic. The most relevant  prophetic statement I am aware of relating to this question is here:  

Discuss the question from the title of the topic? Now that's a novel idea. 😊

1 hour ago, Gone Away said:

"And the ten horns that you saw and the wild beast, these will hate the prostitute and will make her devastated and naked, and they will eat up her flesh and completely burn her with fire.
For God put it into their hearts to carry out his thought, yes, to carry out their one thought by giving their kingdom to the wild beast, until the words of God will have been accomplished." Revelation 17:16-17.

It is a reasonable solution to see the 10-horns and the wild beast as either representing, or some part of the dominant world power at the time of the great tribulation, the fall of Babylon the Great, Armageddon, etc. And it is a reasonable assumption to see the prostitute as false religion. And it seems that God puts a thought into the heart of the ten horns and the heart of the wild beast to give their kingdom to this wild beast until some end predetermined by the God's words will have been accomplished.

1 hour ago, Gone Away said:

Now is not the time to bite the hand that feeds us!

Obviously. But is it the same as "biting the hand that feeds us" to discuss whether our current explanation of this chapter is reasonable? Is our end-time-scenario too sacrosanct to question in any way. Or is perhaps now the best opportune time to consider where our loyalties will lie if things seem NOT to be working out as expected? Or is perhaps now the best opportune time to consider the meaning of Jesus words about not being able to work out the closeness of the time of the end if things DO INDEED seem to be working out as expected?

As several people already know, I come at this issue from the perspective that Jesus warned us against trying to look at signs of the times to divine the closeness of the end. It will come as a "thief in the night." Some of us will answer, but we won't be surprised, or in the dark, as someone who is awake and prepared for the thief. That's true, of course, but not because we will be able to figure out the time or season in which the thief will appear. Not because we will be watching for some entity to call out "peace and security." It's because we as Christians will be both patient and ready at all times because we are always looking out that our motivations are pure. Peter says we stay ready by watching ourselves and the type of person we ought to be, and clarifies the motivations behind all our activity in 2 Peter 1:5-8:

  • 5 For this very reason, put forth all earnest effort+ to supply to your faith virtue,+ to your virtue knowledge,+ 6 to your knowledge self-control, to your self-control+ endurance, to your endurance godly devotion,+ 7 to your godly devotion brotherly affection, to your brotherly affection love.+ 8 For if these things exist in you and overflow, they will prevent you from being either inactive or unfruitful*+ regarding the accurate knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.

There have always been those persons who think they are doing a favor to fellow Witnesses, or perhaps also highlighting their own faith in the predicted scenario by watching out for any mention of "peace and security" by a Pope, a world leader, or a UN representative. The initial post in this topic goes to a lot of trouble to try to read between the lines for items coming from the UN that somehow indicate that "they" could turn against and attack religion at any time. I think this is unhealthy and unchristian for several reasons. But I've already gone into detail about this aspect in other posts in the past.

This doesn't mean the scenario is impossible, only that Jesus said it was wrong to look for such scenarios as a way to anticipate the closeness of the end or to try to predict the timing his parousia. They might create some fervor and anticipation about the closeness of the end, but they will produce an unchristian motivation.

And, as I've also said, it would not be honest for me to discuss the question at hand without also mentioning that I think the whole scenario should be questioned. And, as I've also said, I think as Christians we are under an obligation to question such scenarios as to whether they are Biblical or even useful.

  • Like 2
  • Upvote 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, JW Insider said:

the whole scenario should be questioned.

Which scenario do you refer to here as needing to be questioned?

  • the scriptural picture as portrayed in Rev. 17?
  • the interpreted understanding and application that Jehovah's Witnesses currently hold in connection with Rev.17?
  • the suggestion that UN preparation for an attack on religion could be discerned from current political and ideological developments? And by extension, where we are in the stream of time relative to the start of the great tribulation?

 

1 hour ago, JW Insider said:

I come at this issue from the perspective that Jesus warned us against trying to look at signs of the times to divine the closeness of the end.

This is quite right as the several uses of the thief and unknown hour metaphors in Scripture confirm.

However, why do you think that Jesus outlined detailed events in prophecy relating to end times?

 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
58 minutes ago, JW Insider said:

Or is perhaps now the best opportune time to consider the meaning of Jesus words about not being able to work out the closeness of the time of the end if things DO INDEED seem to be working out as expected?

 Had to caution a few brothers that were sending out thoughts on Facebook and a few places on the matter of looking for God's intervention in human affairs "whenever it is that they are saying "Peace and security!" around the time (a few weeks ago)  America seemed to be making progress in securing peace between North Korea and the West. I reminded them about Jesus' words at  Matthew 24:42-44, as follows:

"(Matthew 24:42-44) Keep on the watch, therefore, because you do not know on what day your Lord is coming. 43 “But know one thing: If the householder had known in what watch the thief was coming, he would have kept awake and not allowed his house to be broken into. 44 On this account, you too prove yourselves ready, because the Son of man is coming at an hour that you do not think to be it."

 At the transfiguration Jehovah told Jesus' disciples to "Listen to him".   These sayings are from the same source, Jehovah, but we have to be sober and not run off with one but not weighing the other.  We know the season we are in, but we will not be able to work out the precise period of the end. No matter what we see now, the end is going to take us by surprise.  We should obey Jesus and prove ourselves ready. No one knows when a thief plans to come.  Jesus stated that it was at an hour that "you do not think to be it", referring to his disciples. So let us to take note but be modest, sober and most of all, ready.  So the question above is really timely.

  • Upvote 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, JW Insider said:

There have always been those persons who think they are doing a favor to fellow Witnesses, or perhaps also highlighting their own faith in the predicted scenario by watching out for any mention of "peace and security" by a Pope, a world leader, or a UN representative.

I hate when people do this.

Ford had just assumed the presidency and pardoned Nixon. At a NYC District Convention the next day, the speaker held aloft the NYDaily headlines - "Peace and Security!" and said: "Have you seen this headline??!!!"

It was irresistable. I would have done it, too.

  • Like 1
  • Haha 1
  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Similar Content

    • By JW Insider
      Sometimes, the Watchtower publications have pointed back to a time when the Watchtower predicted World War One (WWI) in 1914 and then also predicted that the United Nations would rise up to replace the League of Nations. These two "predictions" have even been paired together and presented nearly back-to-back in our publications. They were even brought up again at the 2014 convention and the 2009 convention. The reason the Watchtower has reviewed these two ideas from our history is probably already obvious and clear, and it has been clearly stated, too.
      One of the most recent reviews of the history of Jehovah's Witnesses contains very similar claims, and is found in one of the videos, now also available on tv.jw.org: https://tv.jw.org/#en/mediaitems/VODOrgHistory/pub-ivfa2_x_VIDEO
      These online transcripts appear fairly accurate:
      Video Transcript Jehovah's Witnesses Faith in Action Part 1 Out of Darkness.pdf Video Transcript Jehovah's Witnesses Faith in Action Part 2 Let the Light Shine.pdf Here is the relevant part about 1914:
      —Geoffrey W. Jackson—
      They realized that 1914 had a significance, —Gerrit Lösch—
      When World War I broke out in July, they felt vindicated and it strengthened their faith in the Bible, and in Jehovah’s prophetic Word. Also, it enhanced their trust that Jehovah was using Brother Russell and his friends to explain truth to others. —Anthony Morris III—
      Just looking at the sign of the times that Jesus told us to look at is enough, but it's still significant that they could pinpoint that year. That's phenomenal. Here is the relevant part about the UN and League of Nations:
      —Narrator—
      . . . And soon, they would boldly proclaim a Bible prophecy that pointed to the outcome of that war. ——Chapter 4: "Taught By Jehovah"——
      —Narrator—
      The year was 1941. Having taken the lead for 25 momentous years, J. F. Rutherford had become seriously ill and was about to make his final public appearance. . . . The second World War was raging. Some felt that these events could lead directly into Armageddon. In spite of this, in 1942, Nathan H. Knorr—the one next appointed to take the lead among Jehovah's Witnesses—spoke at a convention about a Bible prophecy that indicated that significant events had to occur first. —Knorr (reenactment)—
      This international war is not 'the battle of the great day of God Almighty.' Before Armageddon comes, the Scriptures show, a peace must come. —John Wischuk—
      There was no peace on the horizon, and yet we said, "Peace—Can It Last?" —Narrator—
      Knorr centered attention on Revelation 17:8, which indicates that a figurative wild beast would come into existence, would cease to exist, but then would come back to life. Knorr then drew his listeners' attention to the defunct League of Nations. —Knorr (reenactment)—
      The League is in effect in a state of suspended animation and needs to be revived if it is ever to live again. It has gone into the abyss of inaction and ineffectiveness. It "is not." Will the League remain in the pit? Again the Word of God gives answer: The association of worldly nations will rise again. —Narrator—
      That association did rise again three years later as the United Nations. —Anthony Morris III—
      They didn't know it was going to be called the United Nations, and we don't make that claim. But they knew it was coming out.  
      [Should be noted that Morris is claiming something that they "KNEW" in advance but he is also correcting a common claim that not only did Knorr predict the rise of the League of Nations three years ahead of time, but that he even used the term "United Nations." As one person writes on a website "Knorr prophesied in 1942 that the League of Nations would rise out of the abyss. Knorr used the expression 'United Nations.' How could he have known the exact name of the new incarnation, when it wasn't established until 1945?"]
      Witnesses got these ideas about a correctly predicted prophecy from an article published a few years later under Knorr's administration in 1960. These quotes should be compared with the actual transcript of the speech Knorr made on September 20, 1942, which was made available as a booklet, and can be found here: http://www.strictlygenteel.co.uk/booklets/peace.html
      The July 15, 1960 Watchtower, page 444, said this:
      "In 1942 the “faithful and discreet slave” guided by Jehovah’s unerring spirit made known that the democracies would win World War II and that there would be a United Nations organization set up." You can also see a reference to the 1942 event in the Revelation book (p.248) on WOL at jw.org: https://wol.jw.org/en/wol/d/r1/lp-e/1101988034
      You can also read the following about it in the April 15, 1989 Watchtower, p.14 https://wol.jw.org/en/wol/d/r1/lp-e/1101988034
      By divine providence, Jehovah’s Witnesses received enlightenment on that mystery in 1942. . . . Nathan H. Knorr, president of the Watch Tower Society, gave the public talk, “Peace—Can It Last?” Therein he reviewed Revelation 17:8, . . . . Was that Bible-based forecast fulfilled? Truly it was! In 1945 the international “wild beast” emerged from its abyss of inactivity as the United Nations. See also the Kingdom Come book  kc chap. 17 pp. 162-173 and and interesting version of events found in a 1981 Watchtower about why this "insight" was given w81 12/15 pp. 28-30
      The Proclaimers book states it like this on page 192-3 (  jv chap. 14 pp. 188-201 )
      This time, it involved the United Nations, successor to the League. While World War II was still under way, in 1942, Jehovah’s Witnesses had already discerned from the Bible, at Revelation 17:8, that the world peace organization would rise again, also that it would fail to bring lasting peace. This was explained by N. H. Knorr, then president of the Watch Tower Society, in the convention discourse “Peace—Can It Last?” Boldly Jehovah’s Witnesses proclaimed that view of the developing world situation. In 1993 the idea was stated as follows:
      “The Disgusting Thing” 12, 13. What was “the disgusting thing,” and—as foreseen by the faithful and discreet slave—when and how was it reestablished? 12 When the end of the second world war was in sight, there was another development. “They will certainly put in place the disgusting thing that is causing desolation.” (Daniel 11:31b) This “disgusting thing,” which Jesus also mentioned, had already been recognized as the League of Nations, the scarlet-colored wild beast that according to Revelation went into the abyss. (Matthew 24:15; Revelation 17:8; see Light, Book Two, page 94.) It did this when World War II broke out. However, at the New World Theocratic Assembly of Jehovah’s Witnesses in 1942, Nathan H. Knorr, third president of the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society, discussed the prophecy of Revelation 17 and warned that the beast would rise again from the abyss. 13 History bore out the truth of his words. Between August and October 1944, at Dumbarton Oaks in the United States, work was begun on the charter of what would be called the United Nations. The charter was adopted by 51 nations, including the former Soviet Union, and when it came into force on October 24, 1945, the defunct League of Nations in effect came out of the abyss. There are several more examples, but this should suffice. I am struck by how often the point is emphasized that these were Knorr's words, "his words" and that they were a Bible-based forecast "foreseen" and "discerned" and "known" in advance through "divine providence" and "enlightenment" and men being "guided by Jehovah's unerring spirit." This is an odd focus on the insights and discernment of men. These expressions are also dangerously presumptuous in that they are so often applied to the one or two times when it seems something was foreseen correctly, but there is no balanced way of discussing the reasons that literally dozens of predictions were made incorrectly and have been dropped as "old light."
      But, as many Witnesses already know, there is something even deeper that is wrong with these claims of accuracy in discernment. The claims are inaccurate! It turns out that this was not really even predicted in advance. A close look at the original transcript of Knorr's talk actually solves the mystery of why he used the term United Nations in his speech. It's because he gave the speech AFTER official work on the United Nations had already begun.
    • By The Librarian
      Listen to "The United Nations Will Soon Act Against Russia, South Korea, Singapore and Eritrea for Human Rights Violations Against Jehovah's Witnesses" on Spreaker.
       
      Jehovah's Witnesses have long been persecuted as a religious minority but the United Nations is telling Russia, Singapore, South Korea and Eritrea that time is up! Listen to investigative journalist Joseph Bonner break down the facts.
    • By TheWorldNewsOrg
      Macron to UN: "Our fight against terrorism is also a political, cultural, moral fight"
       
       
    • By Kurt
      The similar demolition of a Catholic church last year is prompting Christians to worry that the central government will begin ordering the mass destruction of church buildings nationwide as new religious regulations go into effect next month. These regulations grant the Chinese Communist Party increased power over religion, paving the way for escalated persecution.
      according to ChinaAid

      Chinese Police Dynamite Christian Megachurch
    • By The Librarian
      The heated language of Trump’s presidential campaign is affecting American Muslims, who find themselves increasingly on the receiving end of hate crimes. A year into Trump’s presidency, how will his words and decisions affect the country’s Islamic minority? We ask Trita Parsi, former informal Obama administration’s adviser and head of the National American Iranian Council.
    • By TheWorldNewsOrg
      'Mismanagement' keeps UN from reaching full potential, Trump says in debut speech
       
       
    • By bruceq
      WHAT DOES TRUMP THINK ABOUT PUTIN’S WAR ON RELIGION?
      BY ROMAN LUNKIN ON 8/12/17 AT 12:20 AM This article first appeared on the Wilson Center site.
      Just ten years ago, it would have been hard to imagine that the crackdown on civic activism in Russia would target religious communities, not just NGOs. And yet it is happening.
      The Russian state persecutes Baptists, Pentecostals, and Adventists and closes down Orthodox parishes that are not part of the Moscow Patriarchate.
      For the first time since the Soviet Union collapsed, preachers are now being fined for proclaiming God’s word outside church buildings.
      And a recent Supreme Court decision has opened the door to liquidating Jehovah’s Witnesses communities in Russia.
      “Traditional” versus “Nontraditional” Religions
      Russia divides all faiths into “traditional” and “nontraditional.” This concept, while absent from the Russian Law on Religious Freedom (although mentioned in the law’s preamble), has been introduced under pressure from the Russian Orthodox Church (ROC) and Patriarch Kirill personally.
      Orthodox Christianity, Islam, Judaism, and Buddhism are deemed “traditional,” while Old Believers, Catholics, various Protestant denominations, and many others are not.
      A member of the 'Union of Orthodox Banner-Bearers' takes part in a demonstration against the movie 'Matilda' in front of the Church of the Resurrection in Moscow on August 1, 2017. 'Matilda', a Russian movie about a love story between the last Russian Tsar Nikolay II and the ballerina Mathilda-Marie Feliksovna Kschessinskaya set for theater release in October, is believed by many Russians to insult the monarchy and offend religious sentiment.MLADEN ANTONOV/AFP/GETTY
      The concept of traditional religions not only pits worshippers against each other, it also ignores the religious diversity of Russia. Today there are some 15 million practicing Orthodox believers in Russia, 10 million Muslims, 3 million Protestants, 500,000 Buddhists, 200,000 Jews, 175,000 Jehovah’s Witnesses, 100,000 Hindus, and 100,000 followers of other religious faiths (e.g., there are an estimated 10,000 Mormons in Russia).
      The ROC has usurped the right to a close relationship with the government and accuses Catholics and Protestants of proselytizing in the territory that it considers its own. As for Muslims, the ROC accepts as “traditional” only those who are loyal to the government.
      The ROC’s concern is understandable. According to the Russian Ministry of Justice, ROC organizations are the most numerous in the country (around 16,000 communities), while Protestants and Muslims are second and third (5,000–6,000 communities each).
      However, polls show that Protestants and Muslims may be twice as numerous as official figures suggest. For example, evangelicals are now the second largest Christian denomination in Russia after Orthodox Christians in terms of numbers and presence throughout the country.
      In fact, in many regions of Siberia and the Far East, the number of Protestant communities and active parishioners is higher than the number of practicing Orthodox believers. In light of this, Patriarch Kirill has repeatedly urged the authorities in the Far East to “fight against sects” and support the Orthodox projects.
      Tightening the Screws
      The path toward tightening the screws on various non-traditional religions began in 2012, with the “foreign agent” law limiting the activity of foreign-funded noncommercial organizations. Furthermore, the law on meetings and demonstrations was also tightened. And in 2015 a new directive was introduced specifying that all religious groups must inform authorities of their existence.
      Then, in June 2016, the State Duma adopted a series of laws known collectively as the Yarovaya Law. Named after Duma Deputy Irina Yarovaya, who initiated it, the law amends Russian public safety and anti-extremism legislation.
      The part of the law that has already come into force and has received the broadest coverage consists of the statutes regulating liability for failure to report “extremist activity”—a very broadly defined set of activities under Russian law, ranging from calls for violence to the vague “incitement of racial, nationalist and religious hatred” and “propaganda of exceptionalism” based on religion or nationality.
      The part of the Yarovaya Law that has received much less attention is the provision imposing new restrictions on missionary work. The law now imposes a fine of 50,000 rubles on a private citizen for illegal preaching and up to 1 million rubles on a religious organization.
      Illegal preaching may mean preaching in a building that is not designated for such purposes and lacks proper signage. As a result, the police and the prosecutor’s office now consider the activity of religious groups lacking official registration as illegal—a change from the recent past.
      Targeting Jehovah’s Witnesses
      The recent court proceedings against Jehovah’s Witnesses are a case in point. The campaign against Jehovah’s Witnesses began in 2009, during the still relatively liberal Dmitry Medvedev’s premiership.
      In a number of cases the courts, relying on poorly and unprofessionally conducted evaluations, concluded that Jehovah’s Witnesses’ literature could be defined as “extremist,” referring as it did to the faith as the only true faith.
      The adoption of the Yarovaya Law, therefore, opened the door to liquidating Jehovah’s Witnesses communities on the basis of their possessing “extremist” literature.
      On April 20, 2017, on the basis of the totality of these cases, the Russian Supreme Court ruled to liquidate the Jehovah’s Witnesses Management Center and all of the regional organizations. On July 17, 2017, a Supreme Court panel declined the Jehovah’s Witnesses’ appeal, and the decision entered into force.
      The decision means prohibition of activity for over 400 Jehovah’s Witnesses organizations all over Russia and criminal prosecutions of more than 170,000 believers if they continue to gather and read faith publications and the Bible in their specific translation. (There are more than 2,000 groups engaged in this activity in Russia.)
      On top of that, because Jehovah’s Witnesses organizations are now judged “extremist,” the state is confiscating the profession’s assets: 118 buildings in fifty-seven regions whose total value is 1.9 billion rubles.
      For the West, it was specifically the prohibition against Jehovah’s Witnesses that came to symbolize pointless religious discrimination in Russia and a drastic reduction of religious freedoms in the country. The EU’s Office of Foreign Policy, the U.S. State Department, and the U.S. Helsinki Committee have all broadly criticized the move and called on Russia to rescind it.
      On top of that, Jehovah’s Witnesses has filed a complaint with the European Court of Human Rights. It is clear in advance that the judgment won’t be in Russia’s favor. Taking into account the losses sustained by the faithful, the fine that the Strasbourg court will impose on Russia for the benefit of Jehovah’s Witnesses may reach astronomical heights.
      The fact is, authorities’ fight against nontraditional religions and religious denominations, which they peg as weird and scary sects, takes ugly, almost caricature forms.
      Journalists, politicians, and Orthodox activists accuse those of other faiths of activities that constitute the core religious activities of all faiths, including the ROC itself: collecting donations, engaging in prayers with emotional overtones, and instructing followers, including children, in the tenets of the faith. In the context of the massive anti-West hysteria, xenophobia, and search for spies, all of these generally normal activities become a crime.
      Most politicians and public figures, both conservative and liberal, readily jump on the bandwagon, portraying unfamiliar “sects” as threatening to the secular state and even citizens’ psychological health. And the media ignore the persecution of those targeted under the Yarovaya Law.
      There are now more than 100 court cases challenging the imposition of fines against religious communities and individual faithful, yet they are proceeding unnoticed by the general public.
      Who Benefits?
      Many assume that the suppression of religious dissent automatically benefits the ROC. But that is not necessarily the case. Representatives of the Moscow Patriarchate are torn by irreconcilable contradictions.
      On the one hand, there are those who would like to prohibit all sects legislatively and in that way eliminate all competitors. (They are particularly troubled by the evangelicals in the Far East, who at this point exceed the number of the Orthodox.)
      On the other hand, many experts note that as soon as the word “sect” is introduced into the law, half the Orthodox communities could be prohibited. Rank-and-file priests and believers have stated that the anti-missionary statutes of the Yarovaya Law could also be used to prevent Orthodox sermons and missions among youth.
      In Russia, the gap is growing between the discriminated-against non-Orthodox Christians and the Orthodox, between the ROC bureaucracy and Orthodox activists of different persuasions, between the ROC’s leadership and the pro-democracy-minded part of society, between the desires of law enforcement organs and the aims of the missionaries of different churches, including the ROC.
      These conflicts are getting sharper because Russian society betrays more civility than the Russian state. Ordinary Russians are much more tolerant of those professing different beliefs than are the police and the prosecutor’s office.
      And the trend toward aligning the government’s policy with the interests of the ROC produces a boomerang effect: civil society criticizes priests and bishops from the Orthodox standpoint, not from an atheistic one.
      This is why the state has decided to safeguard itself against independent religious authority by heavily regulating it.
      Roman Lunkin is Senior Researcher at Institute of Philosophy, Russian Academy of Sciences, head of the Center for Religious Studies in the Institute of Europe (Russian Academy of Sciences), a member of Russian team of Keston Institute (Oxford, UK) project “Encyclopedia of religious life in Russia Today”, editor-in-chief of the web-portal “Religion and Law” (www.sclj.ru), a public policy scholar in the Woodrow Wilson Center and the Kennan Institute (2011) and The Galina Starovoitova Fellowship scholar of the Kennan Institute (2017).
    • By The Librarian
      The US leader's comments marked a change in tone after his sometimes anti-Islamic rhetoric during the presidential race.
       
      Trump urges Muslim leaders to 'drive out' terror
      Donald Trump has likened the fight against Islamic extremism to a battle between "good and evil" and not different faiths.
      Speaking to leaders from around 50 Muslim-majority countries in Saudi Arabia, the President attacked militants as "barbaric criminals who seek to obliterate human life".
      The US leader urge the nations to "confront Islamic terror of all kinds", deny sanctuary to extremists and stand together against the murder of innocent Muslims by groups like Islamic State.
      According to Mr Trump, "95% of the victims of terrorist attacks are themselves Muslims".
      He said America was seeking a "coalition of nations" in the Middle East with the aim of "stamping out extremism".
      Trump in Saudi: 'Tremendous progress tackling IS' He said the countries "cannot wait for American power to crush this enemy for them".
      Striking a conciliatory line, his comments marked a change in tone for Mr Trump after his remarks during the presidential campaign where he told the US: "Islam hates us."
      Addressing the Arab-Islamic American Summit in Riyadh, he said: "We now face a humanitarian and security disaster in this region that is spreading."
      Saudi King: 'Islam is the religion of peace'  Mr Trump told leaders at the meeting that he brought "a message of friendship and hope and love", and urged Muslim countries to ensure "terrorists find no sanctuary on their soil".
      He announced a deal with Gulf countries to crackdown on the funding of extremists.
      The President also hit out at Iran, accusing Tehran of "fuelling the fires of sectarian conflict".
      He said among Iran's destabilising interventions was in Syria, where President Bashar al Assad has "committed unspeakable crimes".
      "From Lebanon to Iraq to Yemen, Iran funds, arms and trains terrorists, militias and other extremist groups that spread destruction and chaos across the region," Mr Trump said.
      Sky's Foreign Affairs Editor Sam Kiley said the President's comments "will be very much welcomed by the predominantly Sunni attendees from some 50 nations.
      "And it will strike a degree of horror into (Shia-dominated) Iran.
      "Terrorism is sponsored through groups like Hizbollah, by Iran, but there are also Sunni Islamic terrorist groups that the Iranians are fighting, not least Islamic State in Syria."
      Mr Trump also called upon countries around the world to work together to end the humanitarian crisis in Syria.
      http://news.sky.com/story/trump-seeks-coalition-of-nations-to-stamp-out-extremism-10887338
    • By admin
      The UN should create a set of international rules to help stop the pandemic of fake news and Cold war-style disinformation, Russia’s Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova has said during a session of the UN Committee on Information in New York.
       
    • By TheWorldNewsOrg
      Bolivian Ambassador Remembers The U.S. Saying Iraq Had Chemical Weapons!


      World News
    • By Kurt
      GENEVA (4 April 2017) – Moves by the Russian Government to ban the activities of Jehovah’s Witnesses using a lawsuit brought under anti-extremism legislation have been condemned as “extremely worrying” by three United Nations human rights experts*. 
      “This lawsuit is a threat not only to Jehovah’s Witnesses, but to individual freedom in general in the Russian Federation,” the experts said. 
      “The use of counter-extremism legislation in this way to confine freedom of opinion, including religious belief, expression and association to that which is state-approved is unlawful and dangerous, and signals a dark future for all religious freedom in Russia,” they stressed. 
      The condemnation follows a lawsuit lodged at the country’s Supreme Court on 15 March to declare the Jehovah’s Witnesses Administrative Centre ‘extremist’, to liquidate it, and to ban its activity.  
      A suspension order came into effect on that date, preventing the Administrative Centre and all its local religious centres from using state and municipal news media, and from organizing and conducting assemblies, rallies and other public events. 
      A full court hearing is scheduled for 5 April and if the Supreme Court rules in favour of the authorities, it will be the first such ruling by a court declaring a registered centralized religious organization to be ‘extremist’. 
      Concerns about the counter-extremism legislation have previously been raised in a communication by the three experts to the Russian authorities on 28 July 2016.  
      The Suspension Order imposed on 15 March is the latest in a series of judicial cases and orders, including a warning sent to the organization last year referring to the ‘inadmissibility of extremist activity’. This has already led to the dissolution of several local Jehovah’s Witness organizations, raids against their premises and literature being confiscated.  
      “We urge the authorities to drop the lawsuit in compliance with their obligations under international human rights law, and to revise the counter-extremism legislation and its implementation to avoid fundamental human rights abuses,” the UN experts concluded. 
      (*) The experts: Mr. David Kaye (USA), Special Rapporteur on freedom of opinion and expression, Mr. Maina Kiai (Kenya), Special Rapporteur on freedoms of peaceful assembly and of association, and Mr. Ahmed Shaheed (the Maldives), Special Rapporteur on freedom of religion or belief.  
      The Special Rapporteurs are part of what is known as the Special Procedures of the Human Rights Council. Special Procedures, the largest body of independent experts in the UN Human Rights system, is the general name of the Council’s independent fact-finding and monitoring mechanisms that address either specific country situations or thematic issues in all parts of the world. Special Procedures’ experts work on a voluntary basis; they are not UN staff and do not receive a salary for their work. They are independent from any government or organization and serve in their individual capacity.  
      UN Human Rights, country page: Russian Federation  
      - See more at
    • By Nicole
      The Clean Seas campaign was launched last week, aimed at eliminating major sources of marine plastic and changing shopping habits.
      The United Nations has declared war on plastic. In an unexpected announcement that emerged from the Economist World Ocean Summit in Bali last week, the UN officially launched its ‘Clean Seas’ campaign. The goal is to eliminate major sources of pollution, including microplastics in cosmetics and single-use disposable plastics, by pressuring governments and individuals to rethink the way goods are packaged and their own shopping habits.
      Erik Solheim, head of UN Environment, stated:
      “It is past time that we tackle the plastic problem that blights our oceans. Plastic pollution is surfing onto Indonesian beaches, settling onto the ocean floor at the North Pole, and rising through the food chain onto our dinner tables. We’ve stood by too long as the problem has gotten worse. It must stop.”
      It’s a problem that must be dealt with as aggressively as possible. Scientists say that the equivalent of a dump truck load of plastic is deposited in the world’s oceans every minute, and this quantity will only increase as consumption and population grow, too. By 2050, it’s said there will be more plastic than fish in the seas. The UN writes, “As many as 51 trillion microplastic particles – 500 times more than stars in our galaxy – litter our seas, seriously threatening marine wildlife.”
      On the campaign website, people can commit to certain actions to combat their personal plastic pollution, such as not using disposable grocery bags, bringing their own coffee cup, avoiding cosmetics with microbeads, and pressuring firms to reduce excess packaging. The campaign’s press release says it will make announcements throughout the year, highlighting advances made by countries and companies to reduce disposable plastics.

      Some countries have taken noteworthy steps, with ten already signing onto the #CleanSeas campaign. Indonesia, for example, has pledged to reduce marine litter by 70 percent by 2025, and Costa Rica says it will “take measures to dramatically reduce single-use plastic through better waste management and education.” Other nations are turning to taxes on plastic bags.
      The UN Clean Seas campaign is a good place to start, as it will spread the awareness of a little-known problem much further afield. Awareness, however, is just the first small step. It must translate into real lifestyle changes in order to make any sort of difference. It requires people to think ahead – request no straw with a drink, pack containers and bags when going to the store, trade in the diaper wipes for a washcloth, kick the bottled water habit – and it requires municipal governments to take a strong, often unpopular, stance.

      Just as microbeads are being eliminated in many places, plastic shopping bags should be, too; or at least the tax should be high enough to deter anyone, say $5 a bag, instead of 5 cents. Every town should have a bulk food store where the use of reusable containers is incentivized. Styrofoam and plastic takeout containers should be made illegal. Places to return packaging directly to manufacturers should be built alongside recycling facilities, based on the successful model of returning wine and beer bottles for refund in the province of Ontario. Schools need to start teaching children to care proactively for the Earth and to live with a reduced footprint, much like the strong anti-littering messages taught in Japan.
      Patagonia founder Yvon Chouinard quotes Wang Yang Ming in his book, Let My People Go Surfing: “To know and not to do is not to know.” Hopefully the Clean Seas campaign will be that crucial first step toward informing greater swaths of the world’s population and inspiring them to further action.
      http://www.treehugger.com/environmental-policy/un-says-its-time-tackle-plastic-pollution-aggressively.html
    • By The Librarian
      United Nations Building, New York City
      Photo Credit: Flash 90
       
      For years, critics of the United Nations have been calling on the U.S. to defund and even quit the world body. Some have urged that a rival or successor organization be established. Now, the empty sheet of bitter discontent with the UN has been filled in with a new name and a new movement calling to “defund and replace” the troubled organization with the Covenant of Democratic Nations. This writer has been a participating witness to the birth of this movement.
      Just days after the passage of UN Resolution 2334, which declared, among other things, that Israel’s Jewish connection to the Western Wall was effectively illegal, concrete replacement action began. It has started with a conversation of ideas proposing an official international conference that would carefully propound a multilaterally-signed diplomatic convention to be ratified by countries as a binding treaty that would juridically forge the covenant into operational reality.
      The entire process would be limited to nations governed by democratic principles. Each member would or could defund the United Nations while it labored to construct a successor entity dedicated to world peace along democratic principles with equal respect for all people regardless of religion, gender, race, identity, or national origin, as well as formulating a mechanism to resolve disputes.
      A prime mission of the new world body would be to re-ratify, amend, or nullify all acts and resolutions of the United Nations and its agencies such as UNESCO. Thus, the Covenant would create a new body of long-overdue, reformed, clarified, and updated international law. Sensibly, most CDN nations would remain as vestigial members of the UN overseeing its collapse from economic and bureaucratic processes as was done when the League of Nations was dissolved after World War II and replaced with the present UN.
      Clearly, the history of world bodies, fluttering high-minded banners of peace on earth following wars that scorched the world and scarred all humankind, is not a good one. The League of Nations was born after World War I out of a quest for revenge by the victors, laced with a visionary desire to end colonialism and empower self-determination among nationally awakened peoples, so long as the whole business conquered the oil fields of the Mideast, lubricating the machinery of the post-Second Industrial Revolution West—and the multinational corporate palms that controlled it.
      Countries were invented that had never existed, carved and chipped off the toppled Turkish and German empires, with handpicked kings and sovereigns put into place who could legally sign lucrative petroleum contracts. Backstage, oil companies got the oil. But the flaccid League of Nations – which never included the United States –proved its utter uselessness during the Hitler regime.
      After World War II, the League was replaced by the United Nations. Although enshrined as a democratic enterprise, profoundly undemocratic and scheming governments penetrated the organization from its inception. Civil war-torn China and a tyrannical and hegemonic Soviet Union joined France, Great Britain, and the United States to create the Security Council. Expansion, inclusion, and extension eventually enrolled 193 nations, including such egalitarian democracies as North Korea, Cuba, Venezuela, Iran, Afghanistan, Somalia, and Saudi Arabia. The world body began as a sick organ and deteriorated from there.
      The Covenant conversation launched in earnest on January 23 when a panel of like-minded voices assembled in a crowded Gold Room of the Rayburn House Office Building. Representative Trent Franks (R-AZ,) who currently supports a bill to defund the UN, opened the Covenant Launch proceedings by declaring, “This is a critically important issue. The United Nations started out with a noble charter…but the United Nations has not only failed their charter, they have distinctly moved in the opposite direction and done actual harm…. They have become an anti-American, anti-Semitic, anti-democratic, anti-freedom mob…. We need some type of alternative – a Covenant of Democratic Nations…. We need to repeal and replace.”
      Sarah Stern, founder of the Endowment for Middle East Truth (EMET), pinpointed America’s 22 percent share of the overall UN budget. Stern said America was not getting what it pays for when “despotic, ruthless, tyrannical regimes” such as Syria “could pass judgment on the one democracy in the Middle East.” The UN has, she said, proven to be “abysmal” and added, “It is now time to begin having this conversation about dissolving the United Nations and replacing with a Covenant of Democratic Nations that share our common values…of tolerance, human rights, and the rule of law.”
      Famed constitutional attorney Nathan Lewin, who has worked on 28 Supreme Court cases, proclaimed to the room, “The United Nations deserves an obituary…because the United Nations committed suicide when it adopted Resolution 2334. It wrote its own death warrant…. Today I am happy to join a group that would spell the end of the United Nations, the end of its funding, it presence and significance in the world order.”
      The Covenant launch in Washington was only the beginning. Additional panels and town hall meetings will convene in several locales in the coming weeks. The conversation has begun.
      Edwin Black
      About the Author: Edwin Black is the author of several books including “ IBM and the Holocaust” and the initiator of the Covenant of the Democratic Nations effort. For his prior efforts, he has been awarded the Moral Courage Award, the Moral Compass Award, and the Justice for All Award.
      http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/opinions/replacing-the-un-with-the-covenant-of-democratic-nations/2017/02/02/
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.