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ALL JW'S HAVE IS BELIEF IN THEIR GB AND WRITING DEPT


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Having read lots of comments on this forum it is very easy to see that all that Jehovah's Witnesses have is their belief in their Governing Body and it's Writing Department. 

If they believe, as a certain cowboy would have it, that a person can gain no true knowledge from the bible itself, then how else does a person gain true knowledge ? 

It would seem that Jehovah's Witnesses rely totally on their GB 'boses' and on the Writing Department of same, to tell all JW's what to believe and when to believe it. 

Why do i say 'and when to believe it' ?  Well you have to keep up you know :). What is said to be 'truth' by the GB and co one day,  will be said to be totally untrue the next day or week.

JW's have nothing, no proof of any 'enlightenment' from above. They talk proudly about having 8.5 million members earthwide, but how many Muslims are there earthwide ? How many Catholics earthwide ?  Numbers prove nothing as it can be clearly seen. 

Yes I was once fooled by all the 'niceness' of a few brothers and sisters. But once I got to know those people properly I soon found out that they are no better than people in the world. 

The JW Org is no better than any other organisation that pretends to serve God, but the JW Org is in some ways more dangerous.  It wraps itself around people's lives and restricts people's freedom of thinking. It pretends to have 'special knowledge' from God that no other organisation has.

But then if one looks closely one can see it is all just a smoke screen. The JW Org only has 8 men in America dominating it, and 8.5 million people worshiping those 8 men. 

I do feel a bit foolish having wasted years of my life believing all of it's lies and deceit, but I congratulate myself for not being frightened to ask questions and do research for myself. 

No matter what any Jehovah's Witness tells you, the truth is, all they have is a belief in their GB, and they follow their GB's orders via all the others in charge including the puppet men Elders. 

At meetings, conventions, assemblies, on the ministry et al, all they do is use the literature provided for them by the GB and the Writing dept. Without question they pump this 'information' into other people. When conducting a supposed 'bible study' it is actually a book study, studying the words of the GB / writing dept, not studying God's written word properly. They spend more time reading the paragraphs and answering those questions than they do reading scriptures and focusing on God's words.

It is a horrid way of brainwashing people, washing out the common sense and replacing it with lies from the GB / writing dept. Dictating, giving orders and pretending it is God's will. 

Removing the love that people have for one another and replacing it with discrimination. Shunning family members, turning their back on anyone that is not a JW by saying all other people are just 'part of the world' and therefore wicked. 

Frightening people with threats of 'armageddon' killing them. 

And now it seems that they are almost begging for contributions as they seem to be getting short of money. Well paying off millions in compensation for the Child Abuse / Pedophilea of course. Selling off Kingdom Halls too as funds run low. 

Oh how low that religion has sunken. Are they really stupid enough to believe that God is with them ?  

 

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Having read lots of comments on this forum it is very easy to see that all that Jehovah's Witnesses have is their belief in their Governing Body and it's Writing Department.  If they believe, as a certain cowboy would have it, that a person can gain no true knowledge from the bible itself, then how else does a person gain true knowledge ?  It would seem that Jehovah's Witnesses rely totally on their GB 'boses' and on the Writing Department of same, to tell all JW's what to believe and

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1 hour ago, JOHN BUTLER said:

I do feel a bit foolish having wasted years of my life believing all of it's lies and deceit, but I congratulate myself for not being frightened to ask questions and do research for myself. 

 

 He replied: “The one who sows the good seed is the Son of Man; 38 the field is the world; and the good seed—these are the children of the kingdom. The weeds are the children of the evil one, 39 and the enemy who sowed them is the devil. The harvest is the end of the age, and the harvesters are angels. 40 Therefore, just as the weeds are gathered and burned in the fire, so it will be at the end of the age. 41 The Son of Man will send out his angels, and they will gather from his kingdom all who cause sin and those guilty of lawlessness. 42 They will throw them into the blazing furnace where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. 43 Then the righteous will shine like the sun in their Father’s kingdom. Let anyone who has ears listen.  Matt 13:37-14

His winnowing fork is in his hand to clear his threshing floor and to gather the wheat into his barn, but he will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.”  Luke 3:17

“…just as the weeds are gathered and burned in the fire”

"...burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire".

Literal fire?

 “I have come to bring fire on the earth, and how I wish it were already kindled!”   “Do you think I came to bring peace on earth? No, I tell you, but division52 From now on there will be five in one family divided against each other, three against two and two against three. 53 They will be divided, father against son and son against father, mother against daughter and daughter against mother, mother-in-law against daughter-in-law and daughter-in-law against mother-in-law.”  Luke 12:49-53

This is what takes place when a JW rejects the lies.   The teachings/words of Christ are “fire” that burns against the lies. 

Jer 23:29 - “Is not my word like fire,” declares the Lord, “and like a hammer that breaks a rock in pieces?

When lies are burned by "fire"/God's word through Christ, those who submit to His word, are refined and cleansed of lies, idolatry.

"I counsel you to buy from me gold refined in the fire, so you can become rich; and white clothes to wear, so you can cover your shameful nakedness; and salve to put on your eyes, so you can see."  Rev 3:18

This again supports Armageddon as a decisive battle between those who speak truth and those who speak lies.    It is a war of words. Joel 3:14  Satan’s outlandish deception of “truth” is the lie.  2 Thess 2:9-12  Only Christ is truth, it is his words that we have in the Bible that give life; not the doctrine of men and their organization.  John 3:36;John 14:6    God “sends” his “angels”/messengers to expose and burn the lie, using truth from Christ.  2 Thess 2:8; Rev 16:13-16; 11:1-3

 

 

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      It’s 2 minutes long.  I suggest listening to it twice.  Notice the undertones of ridicule directed against the “auTHORity” of Jesus Christ.   See if you detect the exemplified authority of the GB, placed on the same level as God’s word.  And how Jesus was aware of his “limitations”, not having authority “to teach others things that originated in his own mind”.  But this man? He displays no humble attitude before God’s Son.   Even though the GB persists in fabricating deception originating from THEIR minds, you are made aware that they are above and beyond such limitations! 
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    • By 4Jah2me
      I was reading Mathew 24 v 45 onward in an effort to reply to Arauna concerning the Anointed and the Watchtower January 2020 Study Article 5
        “Who really is the faithful and discreet slave whom his master appointed over his domestics, to give them their food at the proper time? 46  Happy is that slave if his master on coming finds him doing so! 47  Truly I say to you, he will appoint him over all his belongings.48  “But if ever that evil slave says in his heart, ‘My master is delaying, 49  and he starts to beat his fellow slaves and to eat and drink with the confirmed drunkards, 50  the master of that slave will come on a day that he does not expect and in an hour that he does not know, 51  and he will punish him with the greatest severity and will assign him his place with the hypocrites. There is where his weeping and the gnashing of his teeth will be.
      Now lets look at this :-  The Master, Jesus Christ, appoints a Slave over his Domestics. The master does not appoint a Slave over other Slaves.
      That Slave would be happy if the Master comes and finds that Slave feeding the Domestics properly.  
      But if that evil Slave starts beating his FELLOW SLAVES, the Master of that Slave will punish him. 
      NOTE that it mentions that evil slave beating HIS FELLOW SLAVES. 
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      Now if we go back to the Study Article 5 (January 2020 W/t) paragraph 1,  the scripture in Zechariah 8 v 23, we note that the JEW is the complete Anointed remnant.  Not just a small number of them. The paragraph itself says "The Jew here represents those whom God has anointed by holy spirit". So the GB / Writing Department here show that  they recognise that the JEW is the complete number of Anointed remnant. 
      That JEW, complete number of Anointed remnant, are also the Faithful and Discreet Slave. 
        From 1927 until 2012, this faithful and discreet slave was interpreted as all anointed Jehovah’s Witnesses. (see Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. , p.626) 
      The Domestics are those of the Earthly Class, and they do not get beaten by the evil slave. 
      The evil slave beats his Fellow Slaves, FELLOW ANOINTED ONES. 
      The Evil Slave are the GB, that started to beat their Fellow Slaves in 2013, shown below :-
      Since July 15 2013, Jehovah’s Witnesses have been told – and now believe – that the “Faithful & Discreet slave” is their governing body only. Confirmation of this fact is found in  Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.  page 21, paragraph 10:
      This relates to Matthew 24 v 48 - 49  48  “But if ever that evil slave says in his heart, ‘My master is delaying,’Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.  49  and he starts to beat his fellow slaves
      The reason that the (GB) evil slave says that " My Master is delaying " is because the ( GB ) evil slave have been concerned about the exact time of Armageddon. They have so many failed predictions that they know the congregation has lost faith in them and no longer trust them. This of course makes them more worried about their position and escalates the beating of their Fellow Slaves. 
      But now look at verses 50 and 51 of Matthew 24. 
       
      the master of that slave will come on a day that he does not expect and in an hour that he does not know, 51  and he will punish him with the greatest severity and will assign him his place with the hypocrites. There is where his weeping and the gnashing of his teeth will be.
      This clearly shows that a time is coming soon when Jesus Christ will remove the evil slave and punish them. 
      When that happens a true SLAVE (Anointed ones) will arise to lead God's true Domestics (earthly class).
    • By 4Jah2me
      So lets try to be a bit positive.  A question.  How is the GB and the JW Org moving forward SPIRITUALLY ?
      What progress has it made in the last fifty years ?   I'm not talking about physical things, not buildings, not books, not meeting times........ 
      I'm talking about purely spiritual matters.  Spiritual guidance, true spiritual love from the top of the Org down, mercy, understanding of people, serving the congregants as a way of serving God Himself (as Jesus did), showing patience without having weakness, making true adjustments according to true scripture not according to man's guesses. 
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    • By 4Jah2me
      I do hear occasionally on this forum, the expression of, (oh dear it's gone now), I'll say Basic beliefs, Foundation beliefs, of Jehovah's Witnesses. 
      My point being, when were those basic foundations started ?  Yes we have Russell and Rutherford et al. So who decided what was what and when ? 
      We have things like 'hell fire' eternal damnation' ' soul in continual punishment' etc. But who basically found the truth from God's word about 'The dead are conscious of nothing at all' ?
      Then we have the 'resurrection of the dead',  those being split into heavenly and earthly. Who decided these things from scriptures ? And when ? 
      It would probably take me 10 years, which I probably do not have left, to research all the things I wish to know. 
      So here is a question. From 1960, what new serious Bible knowledge do we have from those whom regard themselves as the F&DS or top of the tree ?
      What have they given to the congregation that is of extreme importance ?  BUT, more importantly what have they given that they haven't changed since giving it ? 
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    • By JOHN BUTLER
      I do find it kinda' funny that JW's love to talk about billions of people being removed / destroyed / killed / murdered at Armageddon. Billions of people.
      And for what ? Well JW's say it's for not serving God. But they will also say it's for not being a baptised JW. 
      Well we do know for sure that God either deliberately had, or deliberately allowed, the destruction of Jerusalem in circa 70 C E, and for what ? 
      Well the Bible shows us it was for not serving God properly, and for killing God's son. 
      BUT when I suggest that the Governing Body should be removed or destroyed, oh dear, the JW's they get really upset ya know. 
      Governing Body = 8 men.   Jerusalem = how many, men, women and children, thousands of them. 
      But oh dear, now it would be murder. So what was it back then ?  Your see JW's live in a dream world, wrapped up in cotton wool, they just cannot face the real world.
      The Governing Body do not serve God properly. That is clearly visible to anyone that honestly wants to see it. 
      The Governing Body are destroying JW Org, and if JW Org is God's true Organisation then the GB are deliberately working against God and against God's intentions. 
      Humans that deliberately work against God and cause problems for God do not last long on this Earth. 
      The Bible shows much proof of this, such as those that opposed Moses. 
      I am expecting the GB to be removed, one way or another. But only if God really wants to use the JW Org / Watchtower soc for His own purposes. 
      If God does not want to use those Orgs then it would seem sensible for God to set up a new Org for His purposes. 
      The only problem with the GB being 'removed' is that JW's will call it a 'sign of the times' and 'persecution', but if God causes the removal then I'm sure He will put them straight. 
      Those people that say that the GB cannot be removed / destroyed, are those people that worship the GB. And those people that worship the GB may probably need removing too. 
      The world is wicked, it belongs to Satan. The Earth is wonderful and it belongs to Almighty God.
      For God to save this Earth and for Him to save a few humans too, drastic things have to take place. Drastic things have to take place.
       
    • By Witness
      Not long ago, Gerrit Losch asked, “So, whom do you trust?  You fully trust Jehovah, Jesus and the faithful slave.”  “Do you trust me?  I hope so.”  He quoted, Prov 14:15:
      “The naive person believes every word.  But the shrewd one ponders each step.” 
      The leaders of the organization teach that it is God’s organization. This would mean all instructions, all teachings, would come from God. So, we could surmise that all teachings are trustworthy, that JWs could thoroughly expect their leaders in charge, to tell them the truth as Losch expressed above - truth spoken at all times.  
      JWs, you are told that you hear God’s promises when you listen to what the organization teaches you. You are told you love the organization because it teaches you “wonderful truths”. You are admonished to do what the organization wants you to do, because it is God’s proactive organization, always guiding you for your benefit, with your best interests at heart. Isa 48:17,18
      However, since your anointed leaders claim not to be inspired by Holy Spirit, how can you trust their teachings as beneficial and coming from God? (1 John 2:27; Rom 5:5) (1 Cor 12:4,7; Heb 2:4)
      We’re talking about a multi-million-dollar organization in the earthly spiritual realm that promises to guide you to salvation. (Phil 3:19; Rom 1:25) That’s a big deal! Millions of people depend on it, to lead them in truth; since without truth, we cannot be saved. John 8:32;14:6
      Ask yourself, how can it be done without its leaders’ inspiration from Holy Spirit? On a wing and a prayer, as the saying goes? What leads them, what motivates them, if their hearts are not inspired with truth from Christ? (John 16:13; 2 Pet 3:18) (1 John 4:1; 2 Pet 2:1; Rev 8:11;13:15; 16:13,14)
      I have heard 1 Cor 13:8 used by one of the GB members, as the reason for lack of inspiration among the organization’s leaders:
      “Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will be done away with. Where there are various languages, they will cease. Where there is knowledge, it will be done away with.”
      Has knowledge vanished away during these last days? No. Then, why would prophesy cease? Dan 12:4; Rev 11:1-3
      Consider verse 9,10: 9 "For we know in part, and we prophesy in part; 10 but when that which is complete has come, then that which is partial will be done away with. "
      “That which is complete” has not arrived; thus, prophesy as well as knowledge, has not ceased. John 16:13
      (Consider “Has Prophesy Ceased?”  4womaninthewilderness, Pearl Doxsey) 
      What if, you found a teaching in the history files (there are several, and easy to find) that wasn’t trustworthy; that is, it couldn’t be applied today since it was replaced with another teaching? And, this teaching affected the promise of salvation for thousands of people? Many may have died under that false teaching, going to their grave believing simply, a lie. Would this be any different than a Catholic going to his grave believing in the trinity? A lie is a lie. God or Jesus would not be responsible for the organization giving you faulty instructions, that later had to be scrapped. It falls on the shoulders of men. Isa 2:22 We must admit that it is an abnormal relationship of a spirit inspired organization (“spirit-directed”), to be led by uninspired leaders. John 3:21; 1 John 1:6; Rev 13:11,12,15
      I think you’ll agree that we would never receive bad advice or direction from the Father, because He truly has our best interests at heart. Jer 29:11 So much so, that we received warning from Jesus of false “christs”, false prophets who would come on the scene in the last days to deceive “even the elect”. Matt 24:22-25 Now, the “elect” are the anointed ones, where the majority are gathered presently in the organization. Rev 20:7-9 Would they, as a group, be deceived by false prophets in “Christendom” if they are baptized JWs? Would they, as a group, be 'conquered' spiritually by any false prophets in the world when they are already JWs? Rev 13:7; 9:1-4
      The Bible speaks of an anointed “remnant” coming out of “Babylon”. Zech 2:6,7; Matt 24:15,16; Rev 18:4; 12:14,6 If that remnant is the anointed in the organization that have escaped Babylon, as your leaders teach you, this would indicate there are numerous anointed ones in Christendom who never entered the organization. Do you believe this, JWs?
      The anointed are a remnant, the last group of the “woman’s seed” to face Satan’s final test before the Kingdom arrives. Rev 12:4,15,17 This test is called the “Great Tribulation”. Jer 30:5-7; Matt 24:21,22; Rev 3:10 Deceit is at its helm, since it is Satan’s greatest, most powerful tool to use against God’s people. 2 Thess 2:3,4,9-12
      The Great Tribulation is a spiritual assault by Satan upon the remnant (Rev 12:17; 20:8-10; 16:13-16; 1 Tim 4:1; Luke 21:20-22)
      through the greatest Army that has ever existed [Rev 13:1,4; 11:2; 9:7,10; Luke 22:31; 21:20-22,24; Mark 13:14 – (Num 18:7); Matt 24:15,16]
      It has a deceptive priestly - princely veneer (Jer 7:4,8; Ezek 44:6-9; Rev 9:7; Nahum 3:17) of divine inspiration*** and approval, through endorsement by the false prophet's lying spirit, not by God's spirit! (Rev 13:14,15; 19:20) (Rev 2:2; 2 Cor 11:13-15; 2 Tim 3:5,13; Matt 7:15; 1 Tim 4:1; Rev 16:14,13,15; 19:20; Matt 24:24,25; Rev 13:15--***"breath" -John 2:22).  Pearl Doxsey, “The Great Tribulation, What and Why?” 
       
      DECEIT. How do we conquer deceit? By examining each teaching offered by an anointed one, and comparing it to God’s standards through Jesus Christ - to determine if it is true. Matt 7:20; John 15:5 As humans adjusting our spiritual beliefs, we may easily settle for what feels good, but not always for what is right. This last test is one that should purge our minds and hearts of falsehoods, but not all will submit to God’s pure standards of truth. Dan 12:10; Ps 66:10-12; Mal 3:2-4   Not all will be among the “remnant” to “come out of her, my people”. Rev 18:4-8
      Will you?  Or, are you the naive one who believes every word that comes from leaders who are not "inspired" by the truth of Christ?
       
      Praise Yah!
      I will extol YHVH with all my heart
      in the council of the upright and in the assembly.
      2 Great are the works of YHVH;
      they are pondered by all who delight in them.
      3 Glorious and majestic are His deeds,
      and His righteousness endures forever.
      4 He has caused His wonders to be remembered;
      YHVH is gracious and compassionate.
      5 He provides food for those who fear Him;
      He remembers His covenant forever.
      6 He has shown his people the power of His works,
      giving them the lands of other nations.
      7 The works of His hands are faithful and just;
      all His precepts are trustworthy.
      8 They are established for ever and ever,
      enacted in faithfulness and uprightness.
      9 He provided redemption for His people;
      he ordained His covenant forever—
      holy and awesome is His name.
      10 The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom;
      all who follow His precepts have good understanding.
      To Him belongs eternal praise.
      Psalm 111
       

    • By JOHN BUTLER
      I find it interesting when so much is compared between the Jews and the JW's.
      But in my opinion, one big difference between being a Jew before and in the time of Jesus, and being a JW, is choice. 
      If a person was born into the Nation of Israel, they were born under Law and ruled over by the Religious leaders (and the Romans) at that time. There was no choice of being a Jew or not being a Jew. They were born into it. So of course many of them, probably all of them, committed 'sin' and had to make sin offerings. God had chosen that Nation, those people had responsibility but not of their choice. 
      Now, people that enter the JW religion do so voluntarily.  ( Unfortunately for those born into it, they have to go through the motions of serving the JW Org until they are of an age whereby they can leave home. Then, when of age they too can volunteer to be a JW or chose to leave the Org.). 
      There is a big difference from being born into a Nation which you may not like, than voluntarily joining a religion which you do like.
      So the big question is, if 'millions' of people voluntarily join this JW Org, why do so many commit child abuse, adultery and many other sins ? 
      If this is supposed to be 'THE true religion', why are the people not guided by God through Jesus  Christ ?  Just reading comments on here from so called JW's makes me laugh. There is no love, no mercy, no understanding, no respect even. 
      Being an ex JW and seeing things from both sides i have found more genuine love, kindness, friendship, respect, warmth, understanding etc outside of the Org than inside. Inside the Org people have to be told to 'love one another', outside the Org people do it anyway. 
      It has amazed me how JW's can really believe that God is with them when they are so cold and selfish.
      With the Jews that were born into that Nation, they had no choice about their way of life. It was basically a dictatorship by God. The Laws were from 'above'. Obviously for the right reason, to bring forth Jesus Christ who in turn would 'rescue' the human race from complete destruction. But it was a totally different situation to the JW Org today.
      So now all you 'JWs', think on it. Do you truly believe you are in this' special environment' within the Org ? Do you really think that your Org has God's approval ? 
      Think deeply about all the problems within JW Org. All the disgusting things being done voluntarily by all the volunteer JW's. 
      Now ask yourself, are you really a volunteer JW or are you trapped in the Org for fear of losing all those 'so called friends' ? 
      You know that you can only have your family and 'friends' as long as you are a JW.   Do you feel like the Jews must have felt, trapped in that Nation ? 
      As we know many of the Jews left the Jewish religion and way of life to follow Christ, but it was difficult for them. However, they did have God's approval and God, through Christ made this known clearly. And it seems that many are leaving the JW Org to seek God's approval too. 
      But remember that all JW's are volunteers, or should be, so why oh why is there so much trouble in that Org ? 
       
    • By JOHN BUTLER
      I was going to add this to another topic but remembered we are told to start new topics, so I've done that.
      Hope this hasn't been added before but it would take me a month to go through all the topics to see if its on here.
      It is about the baptism of children, but I also thing it involves making children go on the ministry. 

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    • Guest Indiana
      By Guest Indiana
      In February, a Russian court sentenced a Danish citizen who was a legal resident of Russia to six years in prison for such an extremist offence as organizing other Witnesses to shovel snow from their church’s property.
      A month later, Sergei Skrynnikov, a Russian and allegedly a Jehovah’s Witness, was charged with “participating in an extremist organization,” an offence under Russian law that could earn him up to six years in prison. Jehovah’s Witnesses have been fleeing Russia and seeking asylum in Germany and Finland to escape such harsh sentences.
      In China, state authorities harass Jehovah’s Witnesses and raid their meetings. Authorities also deport foreign Witness missionaries from countries such as South Korea.
      South Korea has only recently dropped a 2003 law prohibiting conscientious objection to fighting in its armed forces, a law that confined young Witness men — as well as other men — to jail.
      All these states violate international laws that protect religious freedom, including the freedoms of unpopular minorities. Article 18, 1 of the 1976 United Nations International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights protects everyone’s freedom to “have or to adopt a religion or belief of his choice” and “to manifest his religion or belief in worship, observance, practice and teaching.”
      A long history of persecution
      Jehovah’s Witnesses were among the first groups the Nazis persecuted. There were about 25,000 to 30,000 Witnesses in Germany in 1933. About half of those who did not flee were convicted of various crimes and between 2,000 and 2,500 were sent to concentration camps, where about 1,000 died. About 250 were also executed.
      Some years ago I met a Jehovah’s Witness in the city where I live who told me the Nazis had beheaded his grandfather. Germany’s Jehovah’s Witnesses were not merely passive religious group that refused to adopt the Nazi ideology: they also actively tried to expose Nazi atrocities.
      In the 1960s and ‘70s in Malawi, entire villages of Jehovah’s Witnesses were burned, and many villagers were raped, tortured or murdered as they tried to flee. Their crime was refusal to participate in rituals of loyalty to the newly independent Malawian state and its president, Hastings Banda.
      The Malawi government denied me a visa in the early 1980s when I told its High Commission in Ottawa that I wanted to know what had happened to these Witnesses for research for my book, Human Rights in Commonwealth Africa.
      Many Witnesses in Rwanda, both Tutsi and Hutu, lost their lives during the 1994 genocide, many trying to hide people at risk of being murdered.Even now, Rwandan authorities expel some Witness children from school and have fired some Witness teachers because they refuse to sing the national anthem or participate in religious training.
      Persecution of Jehovah’s Witnesses in Canada
      Here in Canada, Jehovah’s Witnesses have not always enjoyed their rights to freedom of religion and expression.
      During the Second World War, Witness children were banned from schools in several locations because they would not salute the flag, sing the national anthem or repeat the pledge of allegiance. A Witness father sued the Hamilton Board of Education on behalf of his two sons, who had been expelled from school in 1940. In 1945, the Ontario Court of Appeal ruled in favour of the Jehovah’s Witnesses, saying the Board was required to excuse students from participating in religious exercises to which their parents objected.

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    • By JOHN BUTLER
      OK, I've sort of shot myself in the foot by saying I'm now going to take this forum as a joke and have a laugh. In most ways i will continue to do so BUT.
      This evening I was given some information that 1.maybe I shouldn't have been given. 2. Maybe i wish i hadn't been given. 
      Some of you may say I'm telling lies. Some of you may say I'm just after attention. Some may say I'm just trying to put down the JW Org.
      However i have to think on something i say a lot. DUTY OF CARE. Care of everyone, in or out of that JW Org. 
      I have been given this information :-
      Somewhere between 18 months to 2 years ago, a young man that is a member of Honiton Congregation (my ex congregation) committed a sexual offence against a young girl that would have been around 7 or 8 years old at that time.. 
      The young man was visiting the home of this child and he went up to the girl's bedroom and asked the girl to have sex with him. I do not think that sexual intercourse took place but from the information that I've been given, he laid her on the bed and got on top of her and 'humped' her as if he were having sexual intercourse with her.  
      The incident was reported to the Elders and the police were not informed. I have no idea what action the Elders took but the congregation were not informed.
      The young man ( who's name I have ) would have been in his very early twenties at the time, but his mental age is lower. He is a bit slow in learning things and possibly has mental disorders. That is not meant as an insult, but i do know this young man personally and he does act a bit strange sometimes and frightens people.  
      The young man's father was a single dad of three children ( i knew this man quite well ), but he invited a foreign lady (a sister in the JW Org) over to the UK, and they married. The marriage did not go well as the woman wanted to 'be the boss'. They split up and she went back to her country of origin. But then she came back to have a 'second try' at the marriage.  I do not know the marriage situation at this time. However the whole issue would have been totally upsetting for the three children, especially for this young man that found it difficult to cope with some situations. 
      The person that gave me this information, in my opinion, is completely trustworthy, and once again in my opinion, would not have any reason for making up a 'story'. As I was given the young man's name, and i know the young man and his father, it all seems quite genuine to me.
      Now i come back to the duty of care.  For, in my opinion, it is the duty of anyone that has any information concerning child abuse to report it to the police. 
      This could be just a one off incident, but it could be the start of a young man becoming a pedophile. I honestly don't know where my duty is here. 
      The young girl that was the victim of this assault may need help getting over the situation. The information was also that the father of the victim does not want 'any trouble'. Hence he did not want the police involved. That helped the Elders to keep it secret, well almost. 
      Now this young man may commit sexual assault again, within the JW congregation or outside of it.  And that young lady will be in fear of him and yet still have to attend that Kingdom hall where she will see him every week. 
      So should i report what i have been told to the police or not ? Of course I would have to tell the police it is only third hand information.
      BUT, if the police could get hold of the 'records' / paperwork from the Kingdom hall regarding the incident, then it would be proved as true. 
      I do not expect that the Elders would willingly hand over paperwork, so I've no idea how it would work out in the end. But it's my actions that I'm concerned about here , my responsabilites. What should i do ?  
       
       
    • Guest Nicole
      By Guest Nicole
      YELM, Wash. — Authorities on Wednesday were investigating after someone tried to set fire to the Kingdom Hall of JehovahÂ’s Witnesses in Yelm.
      This comes after four other recent attacks on Kingdom Halls of Jehovah’s Witnesses in Thurston County that are being investigated as hate crimes.
      In the latest incident, authorities were called around 7:30 a.m. Wednesday to the report of an attempted arson at the Kingdom Hall on Vail Road SE in Yelm.
      The ensuing investigation closed a large section of Vail Road for most of the day.
      Church elders had arrived to find fire logs stacked up against an outside wall that was smoldering. They doused the logs with water and prevented any further damage to the building.
      The elders reported finding a suspicious device placed on the ground on the west side of the building. It “had the appearance of being an explosive device,” so deputies called the bomb squad to the scene.
      People living nearby the church told Q13 News they were told by law enforcement to evacuate for their own safety.
      “I got woken up by my roommate Zachary saying there was a device on the church next door to our house and we needed to evacuate,” said Richard McIntire.
      McIntireÂ’s shared his concern about living so close to whatÂ’s become a repeated target.
      “I don’t understand why people have to target churches,” he said.
      Neighbors in rural Yelm expressed their worries about the attacks and hoped police would soon make an arrest before someone gets hurt.
      By late afternoon investigators determined the suspicious device wasn’t dangerous. The Thurston County Sheriff’s Office later tweeted, “The suspicious device was made to look like a real bomb but in the end, it was found to be fake.”
      Read more: 
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    • Guest Nicole
      By Guest Nicole
      Many of the children described conditions at US Customs and Border Protection facilities, where they were taken and processed during the first days after crossing the border. In the reports they were only identified by their first names. Timofei, 15, from Russia, who sought asylum on the border with his parents for his beliefs as Jehovah's Witnesses, said they were crowded night and day in the closed and crowded room, detained along with other boys. He said there was only one window that opened onto an empty hallway and that they did not have soap in the bathroom, and that only sometimes, they gave him a toothbrush for individual use. He also said that he was offered a shower when he arrived at the facilities in San Ysidro, California, but he did not and the second or third day there did not allow him to do so.
      https://www.clarin.com/mundo/trataron-chicos-separados-padres-frontera-relatan-dias-detenidos-unidos_0_SJh7dyam7.html
    • By Witness
      As the result of job change many years ago, we moved the family of three young children from the vicinity of the Pacific Ocean to the vicinity of a large mountain lake in California.   Until housing was found, a drafty, “caretaker’s cottage”, built around 1900 and part of once was a privately owned grand estate, was offered as temporary housing for those brief summer months. Since 1965, this estate has been a state park attracting thousands of visitors each year. A handful of these visitors ogled my dishwashing techniques from the window of our borrowed kitchen, while on their independent tour of the estate.  The cottage porch sits back just a bit from the lake’s shoreline, and close by, the mouth of a small creek empties into its chilly waters.  That summer, the lake level was below its natural rim; and the creek, a perfect flow for three boys to wade up and down between its banks.  In this creek, a discovery was made.  A gooey clay cache oozed between the toes of the oldest son’s bare feet, and soon a combined slip and clay lumps were hand scooped from the creek bottom and brought to the front porch for sculpting.  Young hands formed and reformed small pots and trinkets put aside to dry in the warm sun.  Because of the clay’s raw, unrefined quality, the artwork produced didn’t survive long; crumbling into dust as the summer days passed by.
      During that time period as a JW entering a new congregation, I would not have recalled to mind God’s people as clay from the earth in a potter’s hands. Jer 18:6 (Acts 7:49; Mark 14:58; Matt 16:1; Mark 14:58; Matt 16:18; Eph 2:19-22) Only briefly did an anointed one join the congregation; an older woman, and very submissive to the elder body’s direction.  She seemed so fragile, resulting from her age; yet now, I can envision her as “clay” in the hands of the Father.  I was oblivious then, that the chosen ones were in jeopardy of becoming ‘crushed’ under the unseen heavy weight of a “Gentile”/Elder rule.  Do you, JWs, realize that the power of the “holy ones” is crumbling to dust under this dominion?  This is the reality in the Watchtower among God’s chosen people.  Dan 2:35; 8:13; 12:7; Rev 13:1,4-8  Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.
      As long as good clay remains supple in the hands of a skilled potter, a beautiful and useful formation is born.  God desires this for His people under covenant with him; to fulfill His purpose for all of His children in the Kingdom.   Isa 64:8; 2 Cor 4:7; Gal 6:15; 2 Tim 2:20-21; Eph 2:6,7,20-22;3:9-11   Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.
      Yet, each one since Christ, has faced a refinement period allowed by God; a sifting put upon them by Satan through dominating powers.  Luke 22:31; 1 Pet 4:12,13   In the Watchtower organization, other hands and other minds are at work coercing this possession of God, to remain marked as unrefined and susceptible to complete crushing under an iron rule and its lies. Rev 2:26,27;13:16;14:9,10; 2 Thess 2:11,12  At the upper level, its anointed leaders have molded as defiled impure clay, to the iron; ‘mingling’ as one dominating power of both clay and iron; spiritual “Israel” with spiritual “Gentiles”, who are the un-anointed elder body. (Rom 9:6; Gal 6:16; 3:29)   Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.
      This merging of powers is depicted in the feet of the image from Daniel’s dream. It is the final kingdom, unlike any other, that comes against the “holy people” during the time of the end. Will God’s “clay” turn back to the Potter seeking refinement, and leave this oppressive power ruling over them?  Well, how often in the past has the majority of the nation of Israel listened to God and been forgiven for their transgressions?  Always, only a remnant was restored.  Dan 2:41-43; 2:40; 7:23; Job 10:9; Hos 8:8; Isa 1:16-18,2,9    Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.
      FROM WATCHTOWER’S “ISAIAH’S PROPHESY”: “In these “last days,” Jehovah has bared his holy arm in order to revive the anointed remnant, the “two witnesses” of the book of Revelation. (2 Tim 3:1; Rev 11:3,7-13) Since 1919, these have been brought into a spiritual paradise, the spiritual estate that they now share with millions of their associates, the other sheep. ip-2 chap. 13 pp. 180-193
      “These “escaped ones” were restored to their God-given spiritual estate, which he caused to sprout abundantly. THIS SPIRITUAL ESTATE HAS PRESENTED AN INVITING, ATTRACTIVE APPEARANCE, which has drawn millions of other God-fearing people to join the remnant in true worship.” ip-1 chap. 6 pp. 61-72
      To believe that the Watchtower holds a refined remnant of spiritual “Israel” to come out of the “world”, is true folly.  Its version of Revelation’s “two witnesses” were those who “took the lead” and were physically imprisoned by the U.S. government after preaching in “sackcloth”.   Why were they imprisoned?  Among other charges, it was for Rutherford’s publication “The Finished Mystery”, which contained his blatant accusations against the political and religious entities and their stand concerning the war at hand.  He and his cohorts were charged with sedition. When this charge was made, Rutherford scrambled not only to stop further printing of the book, but required the Bible Students to rip out 7 pages of it; all to AVOID being sentenced to jail.  The Society even encouraged the Bible Students to buy war bonds and participate in a day of prayer for victory, all to appease the government.  Although the Watchtower has revealed some truth regarding these events, it then glorifies and embellishes it, as you see written in “Isaiah’s Prophesy” by effectively hiding the true account from its members.
      Did this book reveal biblical truth and Revelation from Christ?  Did it explain the need for God’s Temple anointed priesthood to be refined and cleansed of all sin and idolatry, by speaking in the manner of Moses and Elijah; or, was it preaching lies? (1 Pet 2:5,9;1 Cor 3:16,17; Dan 12:10; Mal 3:1,2; 1 Pet 1:7; Matt 17:1,2; Rev 11:1-3)   Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.
      Watchtower’s own “Revelation” book gives a conflicting report on “The Finished Mystery” exposed by a leaflet covering various aspects of the book.  This leaflet was created by JWs, not by the website where it was found.  After quoting two contrasting remarks from the Revelation Book, it states:
      “Therefore, according to ‘Revelation – It’s Grand Climax at Hand!’, even though ‘The Finished Mystery’ ‘proved to be UNSATISFACTORY AS AN EXPLANATION OF REVELATION’, its distribution was SOMEHOW INSTRUMENTAL in fulfilling the bible prophesy in Revelation 11 concerning the ‘Two Witnesses’ and the manner which they ‘struck the earth with every sort of plague’.” (caps mine)  Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.
      In truth, “The Finished Mystery” struck the “earth” – God’s chosen ones – with every sort of lie imaginable and is well documented in the leaflet. 
      Revelation’s authentic “two witnesses” preach in “sackcloth” over the detestable things committed by God’s anointed Temple priesthood; yet, “The Finished Mystery” and all Wt. literature concerning the message of the “two witnesses”, deflects attention away from God’s chosen people, to those outside of His Covenant by targeting Christendom and the world’s governments.
      These “two witnesses” are not symbolically “killed” for their brief jail time and then later released to further spout off more lies and more false prophesy; but are rejected for exposing the real identity of the Beast/”man of lawlessness” and the false prophet/Harlot directing it. They have spent years in captivity among their own people, drinking in Wormwood’s corruptive waters before waking up to Truth.  It is then they are “killed” when speaking TRUTH revealed by Christ; disfellowshipped and marked as spiritually “dead”.  Luke 21:24; Rev 13:7,10; Micah 4:10; John 16:2; Rev 8:11;13:15; 12:11    Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.
      Through Satan’s full use of his earthly resources, he has successfully spun a “spiritual estate” as attractive and inviting; yet, this spiritually immoral, sultry deception that JWs slave to maintain, effectively afflicts and trample God’s chosen people. It is an oppression symbolically perceived through the physical evidence of the combined iron and clay powers ruling over them.  Matt 24:15; Dan 8:11  Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.
      When Pilate presented both the robber Barabbas and Jesus before the Jewish leaders and the people, he asked,  “Which of the two do you want me to release to you?” asked the governor. “Barabbas,” they answered. Matt 27:21
      Barabbas, (meaning “son of a father”), a robber and killer, was arrested for sedition – “insurrection”, by the Gentile Roman government. Mark 15:7; Luke 23:18,19   Although guilty for his crimes, he was also released by that same power at the demands of the Jewish spiritual leaders.  Rutherford was also released, having his own confidantes fighting for him.  He was not pardoned or exonerated because his innocence was established, as the Watchtower would have you believe. Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.
      (see:  
      Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. ) However, at the vicious demands of the Pharisees and his own people, Jesus was put to death by the Gentile nation for exposing the Pharisees as hypocritical liars and spiritual adulterers; and for laying “heavy loads” on the people they ruled over. Matt 20:17-19; John 8:44,45; Matt 23:4 He preached “repent for the Kingdom of heaven has come near”. Matt 3:2   Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.
       Likewise, on the authority of the Harlot/GB, the “two witnesses” are handed over to the “Gentile”/elder body and judged as apostates worthy of “death”. They also, expose the leaders of their people for spiritual blasphemy, preaching the same message as Jesus did to God’s wayward nation, to “repent for the Kingdom of heaven has come near”.  Matt 10:17,18,21,22; John 16:2; Rev 13:1,5-7,11,12,14,15;  Matt 10:16,19,20,24; Rev 11:3,4;11:7    Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.
       So, what about Rutherford and Watchtower’s string of leadership? Is it fair to say they are "robbers" and "killers" - sons of the Father of the lie? If anointed ones preach lies and not truth in Christ, do they not rob one of teachings leading to eternal life?     Matt 23:13-15; 15:14; Rom 9:1; Ps 52:1-4; Matt 7:15-20  When they spiritually “kill” their brothers for speaking truth, does this not make them spiritually blood guilty?  Matt 24:48-51; 27:25; 23:34; John 16:2,3; Rev 16:2,5,6,7; 18:24  The organizational arrangement was “born” during Rutherford’s reign.  This arrangement allowed for the development of the power of iron to eventually overcome the Temple of God, at the authority of the Harlot/GB.  Rev 11:1; Matt 24:15; Dan 11:31,32,36; 2 Thess 2:4; Rev 9:1,3,10,11     Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.
      JWs, how long will you keep listening to Watchtower’s persistent attempt to cover over its lies with more lies?  Matt 24:15-21; Luke 17:26-30    Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.
      "You are a king, then!" said Pilate. Jesus answered, "You say that I am a king. In fact, the reason I was born and came into the world is to testify to the TRUTH. Everyone on the side of truth listens to me." John 18:37
      Testifying to the TRUTH is the purpose Jesus sends his “two witnesses” to the Temple priesthood and “clay” of the earth.  Their warning call shouts out and reveals the looming iron/clay power threatening the salvation of God’s chosen people, and all, who reside in the organization.  Ezek 33:6,8; Rev 9:17-20; 13:8; 2 Thess 2:9-10   Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.
      This is the word that came to Jeremiah from the Lord:  “Go down at once to the potter’s house; there I will reveal my words to you.” So I went down to the potter’s house, and there he was, working away at the wheel. But the jar that he was making from the clay became flawed in the potter’s hand, so he made it into another jar, as it seemed right for him to do.
       The word of the Lord came to me:  “House of Israel, can I not treat you as this potter treats his clay?”—this is the Lord’s declaration. “Just like clay in the potter’s hand, so are you in my hand, house of Israel.  At one moment I might announce concerning a nation or a kingdom that I will uproot, tear down, and destroy it.  However, if that nation about which I have made the announcement turns from its evil, I will relent concerning the disaster I had planned to do to it.  At another time I might announce concerning a nation or a kingdom that I will build and plant it. However, if it does what is evil in my sight by not listening to me, I will relent concerning the good I had said I would do to it.  So now, say to the men of Judah and to the residents of Jerusalem, ‘This is what the Lord says: Look, I am about to bring harm to you and make plans against you. Turn now, each from your evil way, and correct your ways and your deeds.’ 
       But they will say, ‘It’s hopeless. We will continue to follow our plans, and each of us will continue to act according to the stubbornness of his evil heart.’”  Jer 18:1-12
      The Watchtower teaches that God's people are like "clay in the Potter's hands", then turns the attention of JWs to Satan's world for fulfillment of the feet of the image in Daniel's dream.  Yet, the "disgusting thing standing in the holy place" of Matt 24:15 and Dan 9:27  is spoken as the coalition of power in Dan 11:14-16; one of these powers as COMING  "FROM YOUR OWN PEOPLE" - spiritual "Israel", and the "clay" of  the last power in Daniel's image.  
      Pearl Doxsey has several articles about the last destructive power over the holy ones.
      “Iron and Clay”
      “Why Jesus Came to Earth/Last World Power Over the Chosen ones/”Iron” and “Clay”
      The meaning of ““World/earth/home”
      4womaninthewilderness
       
       
       
       
       
       
    • By Anna
      The God delusion- are Jehovah's Witnesses the exception?
      Religion seems to be more divisive and destructive than any other belief system. Why does the belief in a superhuman power bear such "rotten fruit"? 
      Each religion claims they are the one and only true religion. Is there such a thing as the only true Religion, and one that actually bears "good fruit"?
      Please watch the documentary below and feel free to share any observations you might have, or comment on the problem of religion and belief you have identified and/or the areas where Jehovah's Witnesses differ....etc.
      At the end of the video Dawkins asks imploringly, appealing to our sense of gratitude: “People sometimes say there must be more to this life....but how much more do you want”?
      I guess you can present that question to someone who was born in poverty and disease, and has no way out. Or you can ask someone who has been diagnosed with a fatal illness and has no way of getting better. Or you can ask someone who has lost loved ones who cannot be brought back.  I am sure they would tell you they wished for more.....  
       
       
    • By Ann O'Maly
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      BY Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. APRIL 20TH 2017 The Supreme Court of Russia has a decision to make this week about whether to label the Jehovah’s Witnesses an extremist organization and liquidate its assets. This act would transform the religious community into a criminal network, and make individual Witnesses vulnerable to arrest simply for speaking about their faith with others. While the court case has attracted recent media attention, this move is the culmination of two decades of increasing state hostility to Witnesses. In the late 1990s, Moscow took the Witnesses to court to deny them legal standing in the city limits. After several years of court hearings, the city banned the organization. In more recent years, anti-extremism laws drafted in the wake of domestic terrorism have been turned against Witness magazines and books. Currently, over eighty publications have been placed on the federal list of extremist materials. Even their website is now illegal. So is My Book of Bible Stories, an illustrated book for children, listed alongside publications by terrorist organizations.
      If the state criminalizes the Witnesses, it will represent a major deterioration in religious toleration in post-Soviet Russia. It will also put Russia at odds with the European Court of Human Rights, which has repeatedly ruled in favor of the Witnesses in the past two decades. It may make other minority faiths vulnerable to similar legal challenges. In the 1990s, scholars spoke of a newly opened religious marketplace, in which post-Soviet citizens, freed from the constraints of state-enforced atheism, shopped around among the faith traditions. It is fair to say that these days, this marketplace has fewer customers, fewer stalls, and more regulations.
      If history is any guide, Russia will find it nearly impossible to eliminate Jehovah’s Witnesses. Soviet dissident author Vladimir Bukovsky once admiringly wrote of the Witnesses’ legendary persistence under ban. When the Soviet Union barred religious literature from crossing its borders, Witnesses set up underground bunkers to print illegal magazines for their congregations. When Soviet officials prohibited Witnesses from hosting religious services, they gathered in small groups in their apartments, often in the middle of the night. Sometimes they snuck away to nearby woods or out onto the vast steppe, where they could meet with less scrutiny. When the state told believers that they could not evangelize their faith to others, Witnesses chatted up their neighbors, coworkers, and friends. When these actions landed them in labor camps, Witnesses sought out converts among their fellow prisoners. Witnesses are certain to revive many of these tactics if placed in similar circumstances in the future.
      Moreover, technology makes it far more difficult for Russia to control the religious practices of its citizens. Although the Witnesses’ official website is no longer available in Russia, individual members can easily share religious literature through email or dozens of other social media platforms and apps. While Soviet Witnesses had to write coded reports and hand-deliver them through an underground courier network, Witnesses today can text this information in seconds. Technology will also facilitate meeting times for religious services in private homes.
      The Russian government simply does not have the manpower to enforce its own ban. It is hard to imagine that local officials could effectively prevent over 170,000 people across more than 2,000 congregations from gathering together multiple times per week, as Witnesses do worldwide. The case of Taganrog is instructive. Several hundred Witnesses lived there in 2009, when the city declared the organization illegal. A few years later, it convicted sixteen Witnesses for ignoring the ban and continuing to gather their congregations for services. The state spent over a year in investigations and court hearings for sixteen people, a tiny fraction of the total congregation, and then suspended the sentences and fines rather than waste more resources in following through on its punishment guidelines. There are not enough police officers in Russia to monitor the daily activities of each and every Witness, and the Witnesses know it. Under a ban, everyone will face more scrutiny, a few will be dealt more serious consequences, and most will continue practicing their faith regardless.
      Russia may nonetheless decide that all of this conflict is worth it. After all, Soviet officials were fairly successful in relegating Witnesses to the margins of society. Few Russians will complain if Witnesses no longer come to knock on their door. After all, even Americans rarely have kind words for religious missionaries at their own doorsteps. In my own research, I have never heard a single Russian, other than a scholar, say anything positive about Witnesses. For the record, my experience with Americans has been similar. On a more basic level, Russian citizens may not even notice the Witnesses’ absence from public life. While the post-Soviet period saw a religious revival for all faiths, far fewer joined the Witnesses than the Russian Orthodox Church. For all their recent growth in membership, the Witnesses remain a tiny minority in a largely secular society.
      The vocal determination of Witnesses not to acquiesce to state demands should not cause observers to overlook the very real damage a ban would do to this community. Yes, Witnesses have faced similar challenges before and have dealt with them. For decades, they held their baptisms in local rivers and lakes under cover of night. In the post-Soviet period, new members were finally able to celebrate their baptisms in full view of their fellow believers at public conventions. A long-time Witness who attended one of these events in the early 1990s recalled, “What happiness, what freedom!” A new ban would mean a return to this underground life, to a hushed ceremony in cold waters. This is not what freedom of conscience looks like in modern states.
      Emily B. Baran is the author of Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. . Her work explores the shifting contours of dissent and freedom in the Soviet Union and its successor states. She is Assistant Professor of History at Middle Tennessee State University.
    • By The Librarian
      Is Russia clamping down on Jehovah Witnesses? BBC News
      Russia’s Supreme Court has begun hearing a government request to outlaw the Jehovah’s Witnesses and declare it an extremist organisation. The justice ministry has already placed its headquarters near St Petersburg on a list of extremist groups.

      Forum to discuss in detail located HERE
      Via
    • Guest Kurt
      By Guest 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 
      Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.  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 
      Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. , Mr. Maina Kiai (Kenya), Special Rapporteur on Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. , and Mr. Ahmed Shaheed (the Maldives), Special Rapporteur on Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. .   The Special Rapporteurs are part of what is known as the 
      Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.  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: 
      Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.    Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.
    • Guest Kurt
      By Guest Kurt
      TRANSCRIPT
      In an earlier Vortex, we reported between the years of 2008 and 2014, 3 million Catholics left the Faith in the United States. So we went digging to see what the numbers are for the the last 15 years, since the turn of the century — essentially one generation.
      Brace yourselves here: According to the most recent data from solid sources, in the year 2000, 18 million Americans identified themselves as former Catholics — those who had left the Faith. One generation later, as of 2016, that number had swelled to 30 million.
      Elevent million more Catholics have left the Faith since the turn of the century. There are more Catholics over 50 than under 50. And there are more Catholics over 65 than under 30. And the percentage of young people — those under 30 — in the Church is a smaller percentage than almost any other religion.
      Only Jehovah's Witnesses and mainline Protestants have a smaller percentage of young people comprising their ranks than Catholics, and even there, Catholics are a hair's breadth away from being dead last.
      17 percent of the Church are people under 30. 16 percent of mainline Protestants are people under 30. 15 percent of Jehovah's Witnesses are people under 30. Buddhists, Hindus, Jews, Mormons, Muslims, and the Eastern Orthodox all have larger percentages within their ranks of people under 30 than the Catholic Church does.
      Over the next 15 years, we can expect to see the raw number, the straight pure number of Catholics begin to drop off more dramatically. One of out every five Catholics right now, today, is over 65. Almost all of those people will be dead in 10–15 years. And they aren't being sufficiently replaced. Additionally, we're beginning to reach the moment where there will be more Catholics who have actually left the Faith then there are those who claim to still be in it.
      Although there are conflicting data on the actual number of Catholics in the United States, a safe number is about 73 million. Thirty million Catholics, as we said before, no longer call themselves Catholics. Just another 6 or 7 million leaving the Faith, and there will be more former Catholics than those who still identify as Catholics.
      At current trends, which show no slowing up or changing, we will reach that moment in about three years — right around 2020. We already know from surveys during the campaign that the percentage of Catholics relative to the overall U.S. population has slipped from the historically stable number of 25 percent to roughly 20 percent, and the percentage of Catholic voters dropped from 26 percent to approximately 21 percent.
      This is a Church in full-blown retreat.  
      Eleven percent fewer parishes since 2000; 18 percent fewer priests; and only two thirds what priests there are are in active ministry. The other third are too old for active ministry. Graduate-level seminarians essentially flat lined. The slight increase in the numbers of priestly ordinations is nowhere near enough the number needed to replace those dying — not by half, in fact.
      Infant baptisms off by a third. Adult conversions down by 40 percent. First Holy Communions and confirmations also both down. And marriages — perhaps the most significant barometer for the future life of the Church — down almost 50 percent since the year 2000. In fact, the only two sacraments that there aren't officially horrible numbers for are the only ones no official records are kept for: confession and anointing of the sick.
      But any Catholic with working eyes knows the number of confessions has also fallen off the cliff. Even the number of Catholic funerals since the year 2000 has dropped by 16 percent.
      This entire disaster — and that is what it is — must be placed squarely at the feet of the U.S. hierarchy, who have done nothing meaningful to arrest the decline and have in many ways helped speed it along. What business would tolerate such horrible results from its managers and directors? It would have fired them more than a decade ago for complete incompetence.
      We here at Church Militant often get blamed for causing division, often times by many of the bishops and their staffs. Look at these numbers, Your Excellencies, numbers largely taken from your own data, and own them. Don't blame us. The vast majority of Catholics have no idea who we are. It's not causing division to point at the house burning down and yell "Fire!"
      Your lackluster, protestant-minded, false ecumenism, happy-clappy, fake-joy, heresy-accommodating, tradition-hating strategies are responsible for this failure. You and your staffs have caused the division — not us, not others. You!
      You have given young people nothing to commit to, other than embracing worldly causes, which they don't need you to tell them to do. You have abandoned or destroyed one tradition after another to the point that now, we have arrived at a point where there is no longer any Catholic identity to speak of. You have allowed and even encouraged a flood of abuses in the liturgy, the seminaries, religious houses, schools and colleges so that young people have no idea what being Catholic means, so understandably they have no loyalty to it.
      You have not taught. You have not encouraged. You have not loved. And accordingly, your sheep are abandoning you. You have ground underfoot the patrimony of tens of millions of Catholics from former generations and sold it off. And you rip into loyal Catholics who point this out to try and wake up what few remaining Catholics there are before it's too late — if it isn't in fact already too late.
      Your ill-advised, protestant-based evangelization efforts and emotional theatrical presentations won't turn this around. All you are doing is putting into high gear what you've already been doing since the year 2000. In the next 15 years, when most of you will have been judged by Almighty God, you will stand before Him and be directly responsible for a Church in America that will be unrecoverable owing to your spiritual cowardice.
      You will have to explain to Jesus Christ, one by one, how you embraced the world instead of converting it. Your lampstand has been taken away. You need to meditate on that in the quiet of the night, when there is no one around except you and God. And you need to tremble and quake at the fate that awaits you at your judgments if you don't reverse course immediately.
      Pray for them, Catholics; pray that the majority of them will wake up before they all die in their sins in a few years.

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    • Guest Nicole
      By Guest Nicole
      The organization faces a ban in all of Russia

      The supreme court in Russia’s Karachay-Cherkessia declared the local Jehovah’s Witnesses an extremist organization on February 10 and ordered for it to be dissolved and its property forfeited to the state.
      Earlier, the republic’s prosecutor office had accused the organization of producing and disseminating extremist materials. The Witnesses were then forced to pay a fine and had their literature seized, however, as they wouldn’t give up what the prosecutor’s office referred to as “extremist activity”, the matter was taken to court.
      The Russian prosecutor general’s crackdown on Jehovah’s Witnesses started with a notice of “unacceptability of extremist activity” sent to the organization’s management last April. Citing religious discrimination, JW representatives appealed against the notice. However, Moscow’s city court on January 16 upheld it, ordering the organisation to “fix the violations” unless it wanted to be banned on the entire territory of the Russian Federation.
      Seven of JW’s regional branches have been closed down in Russia by courts. In the southern Russian city of Taganrog, 16 Witnesses were convicted for failing to comply with the ban. Four criminal cases have recently been launched against several members of the organization for “inciting hatred” and “creating a non-commercial entity violating citizens’ rights”. 
      In 2005, a Moscow court ordered the dissolution of the capital’s JW community. In 2010, the European Court for Human Rights found the court in violation of the European convention. And in 2015, the community finally had its registration resumed. 
      There are 100 to 150 thousand Jehovah’s Witnesses in Russia. The Christian denomination emerged from the Bible Student movement, founded in 1872 by Charles Russel. It reports a worldwide membership of more than eight million adherents.

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    • By ComfortMyPeople
      Our problem with the humility
      Humility is not a problem, obviously, is the lack of this quality that I’m referring as a problem. And when I mention “our”, I mean “our” in all our levels. And, let me be direct. I see -in general- more humility in sisters than in brothers, more in publishers than in elders, more in elders than in elders with “special responsibilities.” I’m talking in general, I know real fine examples of humility in brothers with big responsibilities in our organization.
      Ask for forgiveness
      This is a basic lesson parents teach to their children: “ask for forgiveness” always you’re wrong. And, as Christians we’ve received a lot of fine instruction to follow the path of humility, expressed specially when we apologize for our errors. Then…
      Should the GB ask for forgiveness when erring?
      Do you think the same rule all Christians try to follow also apply to GB? Naturally. And, do you usually see the GB asking for forgiveness? Before you answer, one example.
      Will resurrect the unborn babies? Until 2009 we ‘officially’ thought that not. After reading the article w09 4/15 one sister told me that years ago she lost a baby in her womb. She recognizes that our teaching about the lack of hope for these creatures really hurt her. Even the quoted article recognized the possibility of these emotional wounds when mentioned:
      ·        “For those who have never suffered the loss of an unborn baby in this way, it may be difficult to imagine the feelings of those who have. Some parents grieve such losses intensely. One mother lost five children before they were born. In time, she felt blessed to raise two healthy sons. Yet, she remembered each loss. To the end of her days, she knew just how old her stillborn and miscarried babies would have been had they survived.” What was the reason we thought in a way that caused ADDED emotional wounds to these sisters? In the same article, the GB, the “slave”, IMPLICITLY answer:
      ·        *** w09 4/15 p. 13 Questions From Readers *** Does all of this mean, then, that the Bible teaches that children who perish before birth will be resurrected? We must emphasize that the Bible does not directly answer that question, so there is no basis for humans to be dogmatic on the matter. Do you saw? When we in the past were teaching plainly “no resurrection” WE WERE BEING DOGMATIC. This was the IMPLICIT reason. Then, if the writers of the article would have shown more humility, this paragraph, EXPLICITLY apologizing would had been perfect:
      ·        “We sincerely apologize because our previous understanding lead to these sisters to an added emotional damage… We, the brothers with the responsibility, were dogmatic. Signed: The Governing Body” Would have been bad if the GB would have included this kind of commentary in the article? If not, why we have never found this kind of expressions? One moment! The “slave” is humble, the brothers recognize they commit errors and aren’t unerring.
      “I am a sinner”
      I use to give a talk about the pray. At some point ask to the auditorium what they think about my pray this night if I mention to Jehovah “Oh God, forgive me please, I am a sinner.” Now, stop for a while and observe from the platform the brothers nodding. At this point ask them “what if I modify my pray tonight in this way: ‘Oh God, forgive me please, today I’ve envied brother James a lot when he showed me his new car’…etc.”. Now the brothers nodded with more emphasis.
      What I mean is that a humble person should be specific when ask for forgiveness. Sadly, I haven’t found this humility with the errors the branch in my country has made over the years, nor the errors the GB has made when publishing some information causing damages –Later I’ll try to justify them.
      Perhaps someone thinks this is to be hard or lack of appreciation with the teaching and work of these brothers of the GB. Believe me, I pray for them. Whether I like it or not they are, under Christ, guiding the ship, and all of us are in the same boat –Later I’ll try to justify them.
      If someone thinks this matters don’t cause wounds…
      The 1975 repentance
      Between many other references, I quote this, because is easily found in the WT Library (CD edition).
      ·        *** km 7/70 p. 3 Announcements *** A new circuit assembly program is scheduled to begin in September. We believe you will find it most informative and upbuilding. The public talk will be “Who Will Conquer the World in the 1970’s? I attended this assembly. This and other declarations make us to feel very excited. After this came the disillusion but, in general, God’s people, as we serve God for love, have continued worship Him until now.
      Had damage with this unscriptural emphasis to one date? These are, rounded, the average of publishers in those years:
      ·        1975: 2,062,000 ·        1976: 2,136,000 ·        1977: 2,117,000 ·        1978: 2,086,000 ·        1979: 2,087,000 ·        1980: 2,175,000 As we can see, it had a slowdown in several years just after 1975. Was it the fault, at some degree, the GB teaching about 1975? All of we, serving in the congregations around the world, know the answer. In my personal case, as I’m alone in the truth and I was a teenager in those years, all my family laughed about my new religion and my beliefs. Weight was added to their arguments about we were a group of fanatics.
      Well, what is the supposed behavior of a humble person when errs so seriously? Yes, ask for forgiveness. Some brother now is crying: “but the brothers recognized his error!” Yes, I’m witness of this. It began in the 1979 district convention. I still remember the talk and the brother assigned to the speech. Follows quotations about this talk.
      ·        *** yb80 pp. 30-31 1980 Yearbook of Jehovah’s Witnesses *** The brothers also appreciated the candor of this same talk, which acknowledged the Society’s responsibility for some of the disappointment a number felt regarding 1975.
      And, the talk was partially recorded in this Watchtower article:
      ·        *** w80 3/15 pp. 17-18 pars. 5-6 Choosing the Best Way of Life *** In modern times such eagerness, commendable in itself, has led to attempts at setting dates for the desired liberation from the suffering and troubles that are the lot of persons throughout the earth. With the appearance of the book Life Everlasting—in Freedom of the Sons of God, and its comments as to how appropriate it would be for the millennial reign of Christ to parallel the seventh millennium of man’s existence, considerable expectation was aroused regarding the year 1975. There were statements made then, and thereafter, stressing that this was only a possibility. Unfortunately, however, along with such cautionary information, there were other statements published that implied that such realization of hopes by that year was more of a probability than a mere possibility. It is to be regretted that these latter statements apparently overshadowed the cautionary ones and contributed to a buildup of the expectation already initiated. In its issue of July 15, 1976, The Watchtower, commenting on the inadvisability of setting our sights on a certain date, stated: “If anyone has been disappointed through not following this line of thought, he should now concentrate on adjusting his viewpoint, seeing that it was not the word of God that failed or deceived him and brought disappointment, but that his own understanding was based on wrong premises.” In saying “anyone,” The Watchtower included all disappointed ones of Jehovah’s Witnesses, hence including persons having to do with the publication of the information that contributed to the buildup of hopes centered on that date
       Before someone says “this proves the humility of GB”, let me say this illustration.
      Imagine a tourist guide in a journey by the jungle is leading a group of tourists. He lost the way and, as a result, some of the persons under his responsibility lost their life. Now, years later all finishes, he says to the group he took by the wrong way: “I wasn’t the only one wrong, all of you were also lost.”
      Do you think the guide was humble? Do you think our GB showed humility? –Later I’ll try to justify them.
      An Apostate Fails
      This is the subtitle containing the next quote, six years after the above statements regarding the 1975 “error”:
      ·        *** w86 12/15 p. 20 pars. 20-21 *** “Is there a modern-day parallel to Achan’s sin? Yes, there is. […] For a recent example, during the mid-1970’s some prominent elders became disgruntled. It was below their “dignity” to witness from house to house, proclaiming the Kingdom message after the pattern of Jesus’ apostles. (Acts 5:42; 20:20, 21, 29, 30) It looked good to them to go back to Babylonish teachings. Slyly they tried to raise doubts about “the last days” and to slow down the work of Jehovah’s Witnesses. (2 Peter 3:3, 4) Finally, they had to be disfellowshipped.—[…]  Loyal Witnesses moved forward vigorously into the 1980’s! Likely the presence of a small number of apostates had contributed to the slowing down of Jehovah’s work during the last half of the 1970’s—when the average yearly increase in the active ranks of Jehovah’s Witnesses fell to less than 1 percent. However, the annual increase in the last five years has averaged more than 6 percent. Kingdom publishers reached a worldwide peak of 3,024,131 in 1985, compared with 2,179,256 in 1975”
      I remember those days. In my country almost no one could perceive any bad influence from these ex-brothers. I have no doubt those days were hard but, each reader of the above Watchtower article got the idea that the slowdown of those years was due for these apostates. Really? The 1975 disillusion hadn’t nothing to do with this?  Following with my illustration about the guide in the jungle, what if he says: “the blame wasn’t mine, this other people also contributed to the error!” Is it humility?
      I think it is time to justify this behavior of our brothers in his VERY DIFFICULT assignment.
      The patriarch Job and the “two witnesses”
      As all we well know Job was under attack, not only by the Devil, but unconsciously also his friends cause him to develop an attitude of self-defense. This pressure forced this man to deny any error on his part. (Job 34:5) “For Job has said, ‘I am in the right” resumes his attitude. Also this quote from WT reflects well the idea.
      ·        *** w09 4/15 pp. 10-11 par. 14 Job maintained his integrity even though he was imperfect. Sometimes, under extreme pressure, he had the wrong perspective. For instance, he said to Jehovah: “I cry to you for help, but you do not answer me . . . With the full might of your hand you harbor animosity toward me.” Moreover, Job attached undue importance to justifying himself when he said: “I am not in the wrong” and “there is no violence upon my palms, and my prayer is pure.” (Job 10:7; 16:17; 30:20, 21)
      And it isn’t true the GB is continuously under scrutiny, attack, looking them with a magnifying glass? In the old good days of the types-antitypes we would say this should be a model. But even without types, the GB is continuously criticized (this forum is a very soft example, I dislike many others places because those persons only want to spit on our faces). As one strong proof the GB is under scrutiny, let’s read about the two witnesses in Revelation, which foreshadow God’s people in our days, mainly the brothers leading the work:
      ·        (Revelation 11:7-12) “the wild beast that ascends out of the abyss will wage war with them and conquer them and kill them […] And those of the peoples and tribes and tongues and nations will look at their corpses for three and a half days, and they do not allow their corpses to be laid in a tomb. And those dwelling on the earth rejoice over them and celebrate, and they will send gifts to one another, because these two prophets tormented those dwelling on the earth. […] And they went up into heaven in the cloud, and their enemies saw them.
      I think is crystal clear from the scriptures these brothers would have enemies and they would be persecuted. And the hate upon them would get to the point to celebrate their killing and enjoying with the sight of their corpses.
      Well, for me it justifies the attitude of the GB. I mean, I understand it, not I share it.
      The difficult role of Elihu
      Which side are you on? Perhaps Job thought this when heard this words from the young: (Job 33:12) “But you are not right in saying this.” And this is the situation of some of us. Our brothers overseeing the worldwide brotherhood are, scripturally under scrutiny, continuously. If we thought that some errors or injustices are made from these brothers, if we point these mistakes, it appears that we are in the side of opponents. It is a difficult role. What did Elihu? Disqualified entirely Job, as his ‘friends’? Look these exact words: “you are not right in saying this.” I hope nobody would think he was an apostate to say this.
      And for some of us I think there is a quite similar situation. We respect the GB. We think these brothers are being used for God to oversee His house, as we, the elders in one specific congregation are being used for God to oversee this congregation. But sometimes, we can't deny ourselves and our intelligence, when we point out, as Elihu “you are not right in saying this.”
    • Guest Nicole
      By Guest Nicole
      When Audrey Butler dedicated herself to becoming a Jehovah's Witness seven years ago, she knew she would never accept a blood transfusion—even if that meant making a choice between life and death.
      "Well the scriptures do tell us that the blood is the soul. So that's how precious blood is to us. It's your life. It's the person's life," she explains.
      Butler and other Jehovah's Witnesses believe that several passages in the Bible forbid them from consuming blood in any way, including via blood transfusions. This belief can be at odds with standard medical practice; during the course of surgery, some patients require blood transfusions in order to combat blood loss.
      At age 46, Butler began suffering from pain and stiffness in her knee. Doctors told her she had arthritis, and that she would likely need a knee replacement in the coming years.
      Butler avoided surgery for as long as possible, enduring painful knee injections and doing her best to live with a limp. But eventually, she began to feel that her limp was slowing her down significantly. Her arthritis was having a considerable impact on her quality of life. 
      Butler knew she needed the knee replacement. She also knew she was unwilling to abandon her faith.

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    • By Anna
      In the past months, there have been quite a few study articles with regard to the GB/Slave. I am trying to get an overall  understanding of 2 particular WT articles on this one topic, so that two quotes from the WTs harmonize. 
      Today's WT study (Nov 2016) p.15 par.9:  "Some may feel that they can interpret the Bible on their own. However, Jesus has appointed the ‘faithful slave’ to be the only channel for dispensing spiritual food. Since 1919, the glorified Jesus Christ has been using that slave to help his followers understand God’s own Book and heed its directives.’"
      And
      WT Feb.2017 p.26. par.12 " The Governing Body is neither inspired nor infallible. Therefore, it can err in doctrinal matters or in organizational direction. In fact, the Watch Tower Publications Index includes the heading “Beliefs Clarified,” which lists adjustments in our Scriptural understanding since 1870".
      It seems that the key to making sense of these 2 seemingly opposing quotes is in the above paragraph if we continue reading: " Of course, Jesus did not tell us that his faithful slave would produce perfect spiritual food".
    • By JW Insider
      Usually when we refer to the "faithful and discreet slave" parable, we refer to the parable of 'the faithful and the unfaithful slave' found in Matthew 24:45-51. But the parable of the "faithful and discreet slave" is also found in Luke, where the expression is changed a bit to "the faithful steward, the discreet one . . . that slave."
      (Luke 12:42-48) 42 And the Lord said: “Who really is the faithful steward, the discreet one, whom his master will appoint over his body of attendants to keep giving them their measure of food supplies at the proper time? 43 Happy is that slave if his master on coming finds him doing so! 44 I tell you truthfully, he will appoint him over all his belongings. 45 But if ever that slave should say in his heart, ‘My master delays coming,’ and starts to beat the male and female servants and to eat and drink and get drunk, 46 the master of that slave will come on a day that he is not expecting him and at an hour that he does not know, and he will punish him with the greatest severity and assign him a part with the unfaithful ones. 47 Then that slave who understood the will of his master but did not get ready or do what he asked will be beaten with many strokes. 48 But the one who did not understand and yet did things deserving of strokes will be beaten with few. Indeed, everyone to whom much was given, much will be demanded of him, and the one who was put in charge of much will have more than usual demanded of him.
      "That slave" is given an assignment to feed the master's "body of attendants." If he obeys, he gets a promotion, and if he disobeys he is punished. This is the exact same idea as in Matthew 24, except that there are only about 15 words referring what happens if this slave obeys and 150 words in the section about what happens if the slave disobeys. That's about 10 times as much space given to the idea of disobedience versus obedience. In Matthew it's only about 3 times as much space given to the idea of disobedience.
      That might explain why the verses in Matthew are referenced so much more often in Watch Tower publications and speech. The Watchtower has, of course, minimized the idea of any potential disobedience:
      *** w13 7/15 p. 24 “Who Really Is the Faithful and Discreet Slave?” ***
      Was Jesus foretelling that there would be an evil slave class in the last days? No. Granted, some individuals have manifested a spirit similar to that of the evil slave described by Jesus. We would call them apostates, whether they were of the anointed or of the “great crowd.” (Rev. 7:9) But such ones do not make up an evil slave class. Jesus did not say that he would appoint an evil slave. His words here are actually a warning directed to the faithful and discreet slave.
        Notice that Jesus introduces the warning with the words “if ever.” One scholar says that in the Greek text, this passage “for all practical purposes is a hypothetical condition.”
      This is an adjustment to the doctrine held just up until the change in 2013. Prior to the quote above (originally presented at the Annual Meeting in 2012) the idea about the evil slave was just the opposite: that the "evil slave" came directly from the ranks of the "faithful slave."
      *** w04 3/1 p. 13 pars. 2-4 ‘The Faithful Slave’ Passes the Test! ***
      The expression “that evil slave” draws our attention to Jesus’ preceding words about the faithful and discreet slave. Yes, the “evil slave” came from the ranks of the faithful slave. How?
      3 Before 1914, many members of the faithful slave class had high hopes of meeting with the Bridegroom in heaven that year, but their hopes were not fulfilled. As a result of this and other developments, many were disappointed and a few became embittered. Some of these turned to ‘beating’ their former brothers verbally and consorting with “confirmed drunkards,” religious groups of Christendom.—Isaiah 28:1-3; 32:6.
      4 These former Christians came to be identified as the “evil slave,” and Jesus punished them with “the greatest severity.” How? He rejected them, and they lost out on their heavenly hope. They were not, however, immediately destroyed. They first had to endure a period of weeping and gnashing of teeth in “the darkness outside” the Christian congregation. (Matthew 8:12) Since those early days, a few other anointed individuals have shown a similar bad spirit, identifying themselves with the “evil slave.” Some of the “other sheep” have imitated their unfaithfulness. (John 10:16)
      Now, of course, the "faithful slave" is made to be the equivalent of the Governing Body since 1919. (The Governing Body has only existed in its current form since the early to mid-1970's.) For this reason, evidently, it would no longer be appropriate to consider or expect that the evil slave might come from the ranks of the Governing Body. Continuing this teaching would likely create a measure of suspicion and questioning of the Governing Body themselves.
    • Guest Nicole
      By Guest Nicole
      Éloïse Dupuis was giddy with excitement the day before she gave birth to her first child, a son she and her husband named Liam.
      In a Facebook message to her aunt Manon Boyer, the 27-year-old said “she couldn’t wait to see him, to hold him and to rock him.”
      “She said the dream of her life was about to come true and she couldn’t wait to introduce him to me,” Boyer recalled, one week after her niece died in a hospital following complications from a difficult delivery.
      Dupuis was a Jehovah’s Witness and had signed a document, when she became an adult, saying she would not accept a blood transfusion. Jehovah’s Witnesses believe that passages in the Bible order them to abstain from taking blood, even when their life is in danger.
      The young woman died six days after giving birth in a hospital in Lévis, near Quebec City, after being transferred from a birthing centre when complications arose. The exact cause of death has not yet been determined. However, reports suggesting she didn’t accept a blood transfusion have created a stir in Quebec, with friends, some family members and politicians questioning whether she made the decision freely. 
      Her parents, her husband and her in-laws were with her for six days before she died, Boyer said.
      “I don’t believe she would have refused blood after having her baby if she knew her life was in danger. I don’t think she had the capacity to make a free choice because she was ill from two surgeries. The family never notified us that she was ill.”
      Boyer said she is happy that coroner Luc Malouin is investigating her niece’s death, because he will probably question the nurses and doctors who treated Dupuis at the hospital. Boyer said she has already spoken to Malouin about the death.
      Boyer said she felt that something was amiss when Dupuis, and her niece’s mother, failed to answer Facebook messages she had sent inquiring about the birth on Oct. 6.
      “I sent a message congratulating her on being a grandmother, but she didn’t answer,” Boyer recalled. “The next day, I sent a message saying I know they’re busy, but could they let me know if Éloïse is fine. But that wasn’t answered either.” 
      A few days later, Boyer noticed a message on Dupuis’s Facebook wall, congratulating her and her husband on their second wedding anniversary. However, the person who posted the message said that they knew “it wasn’t a happy time but that the couple would have other times to celebrate.”
      Boyer said she was confused by the message, so she replied to it asking for news about her niece.
      “Why isn’t it a good day to celebrate when you just had a baby?” she wondered.
      It was then that someone wrote that Dupuis was fighting for her life and had lost a lot of blood.
      Boyer said her daughter called the hospital to find out what was going on. A nurse said she would ask a member of Dupuis’s family to speak to her, but family members refused to come to the phone, she said.  
      “The nurse said we could come to the hospital to visit, but she said that Éloïse’s heart was beating slowly and it was just a question of hours before she would die.”
      After hearing the news, Boyer contacted Cassandra Zélézen, a childhood friend of her niece. Zélézen and her two sisters, who are triplets, drove to the hospital from their home in Rawdon, in the Lanaudière region, to try to see their ailing friend.
      Zélézen told the Montreal Gazette that Dupuis’s father refused to allow them to see his daughter. Dupuis’s husband told the triplets that he had regrets about having the baby at the birthing centre and wondered about the decision not to have a blood transfusion. 
      “Now, it’s too late,” Zélézen recalled the husband saying.
      Her friend died a short time later. 
      While at the hospital, Zélézen said that Dupuis’s husband showed her a note that Dupuis had written, while intubated, after having her uterus removed. 
      “It’s OK, we can adopt,” the note read.
      After Dupuis’s death, her friends messaged her aunt saying: “She’s dead, she’s dead.”
      On the day Dupuis died, three elders from a Jehovah’s Witness congregation were present at the hospital, according to Zélézen.
      John Redwood, a former Jehovah’s Witness from Maryland who wrote about Dupuis’s death on his website, said the organization has a Hospital Liaison Committee made up of trained elders who are dispatched to hospitals any time a Witness may require a blood transfusion.
      “Their purpose is to support the family in their decision (and) to avoid being coerced into taking blood,” said Redwood, 49, who left his congregation three years ago. “They may not have ever met the patient, but these are the enforcers of the policy.”
      He said there is a second committee, called the Hospital Visitation Committee, made up of members who visit and pray with sick patients but don’t “interfere with blood policy.”
      Simon Picard, a spokesperson for the Jehovah’s Witnesses in Canada, denied that elders are sent to hospitals to ensure that blood transfusions do not take place.
      “We have members who will be there to provide support, but the choice to not have a blood transfusion is an individual choice,” he said. “When you’re in a crisis situation, you like to have members to support you in a decision you have made.”
      Quebec Premier Philippe Couillard called Dupuis’s death “terrible,” but said it was important for society to respect the law and individual choice.
      “The jurisprudence has been very clear: if a person of sound mind refuses medical treatment, even if it costs them their life, we can’t go against their will.”
      In Quebec City, the Coalition Avenir Québec described the incident as “troubling,” and said it raises serious questions about the health care system.
      “I don’t have answers today, but I say to myself: ‘How can it be that we let someone die in Quebec for religious reasons?’ ” CAQ Leader François Legault said. 
      Nathalie Roy, the CAQ critic for secularism, wondered whether Dupuis “had really given free and clear consent. Are there people who spoke for her, who decided for her? Did she know she was going to die leaving her child there?” 
      Dupuis, whose immediate family could not be reached for comment, had moved to the Beauce region two years ago, following her marriage, but still remained in touch with Boyer and her family.
      “It’s unbelievable that you could die a few days after having a baby,” Boyer said. “The baby will be raised by them (Dupuis’s family) and we will never see him. We have lost a beautiful girl. She was full of love and was ready to help anyone, anywhere, any time.”

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    • Guest Nicole
      By Guest Nicole
      (QUEBEC) The Government does not intend to restrict access to hospital rooms to specific groups, religions of the disciples, said yesterday the Minister of Health, Gaétan Barrette.
      “You ask me to decide on a person can receive visits from his entourage. You are going away, “said Mr. Barrette briefing. Mr. Barrette has acknowledged that as a physician, he had already faced JW representations to patient.
      Earlier in the National Assembly, the caquiste MP Simon Jolin-Barrette had claimed that Quebec clearly gives hospitals the right to restrict access to patients. In addition, a judge should be asked to intervene to assess if a patient refuses treatment rightly whose life may depend, proposed caquiste Member for Borduas.
      The young Eloise Dupuis, died last week at the Hotel Dieu de Lévis, refused a blood transfusion because she was a follower of Jehovah’s Witnesses. However, shortly before his death, the young woman had been in the hospital, visiting senior members of the sect. This “Jehovah’s Witnesses Hospital Liaison Committee” had pressured the young woman to conform to the dogma and refusing to receive blood. The Sun reported yesterday that relatives of M me Dupuis had indicated that members of this group were found in the room of the young mother until the final hours of his life.
      “We know that a font of blood is present in Québec hospitals,” said Simon Jolin-Barrette, caquiste Member for Borduas.
      “[The policy of blood] put pressure on patients and their families, it denies access to people who are not members of Jehovah’s Witnesses in the patient’s room,” reported Mr. Jolin-Barrette. According to him, access to in-patients should fall away. Can not let the “blood police” control access to rooms.
      It exceeds certain limits”
      According Gaétan Barrette, it is an exaggeration to talk of “blood police”; the opposition would, in fact, create a “police visits.” But the patient is “autonomous in his choice must be done independently.” It is a “situation is dramatic.”
      “But to use inflammatory language, when we talk of” blood police, “I think here we exceed certain limits,” said Gaétan Barrette.
      A coroner examines the circumstances of his death.
      For the PQ member Agnes Maltais, not need a judge. “Decisions on the free and informed consent, he takes daily by doctors, and it faces, in general, this kind of situation. We do not agree with the position that says that they can attack the doctors. The doctors do their job. In this case especially, we know very well that there were lawyers, there was an ethics committee and there were doctors who intervened, “said she summarized.

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    • Guest Nicole
      By Guest Nicole
      Would you date a reproved?




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    • folens  »  Eric Ouellet

      Hello Eric merci pour tes sujets et partages. Bonne journée Michel
      12 SECRETS POUR MAINTENIR LA JOIE DANS l organisation de Jéhovah.pdf memoire_vivante56.pdf Un athée.pdf
      · 0 replies
    • Eric Ouellet

      Que nos sacrifices de paix venant du coeur soit pur aux services de Dieu
      Le Lévitique a été écrit il y a 3 500 ans, mais Jéhovah l’a préservé pour nous instruire  (Rom. 15:4). Ce livre nous aide à comprendre ce que Jéhovah pense et ressent. Nous devrions donc nous y intéresser de près. En fait, nous pouvons tirer beaucoup de leçons de ce livre inspiré de Dieu. Examinons-en quatre.
      COMMENT OBTENIR L’APPROBATION DE JÉHOVAH
      Première leçon : nous devons avoir l’approbation de Jéhovah si nous voulons qu’il accepte nos sacrifices. Chaque année, le jour de la Réconciliation, la nation d’Israël se rassemblait et des sacrifices d’animaux étaient offerts. Ces sacrifices rappelaient aux Israélites qu’ils avaient besoin d’être purifiés de leurs péchés. Mais avant d’entrer dans le Très-Saint avec du sang provenant des sacrifices, le grand prêtre devait d’abord accomplir une autre tâche, une tâche dont l’objectif était bien plus important que le pardon des péchés de la nation.
      (Lire Lévitique 16:12, 13.) Imagine la scène : Nous sommes le jour de la Réconciliation. Le grand prêtre entre dans le tabernacle. C’est la première des trois fois où il va entrer dans le Très-Saint ce jour-là. Dans une main, il tient un récipient contenant de l’encens parfumé, et dans l’autre un récipient à feu en or rempli de braises. Il s’arrête un instant devant le rideau du Très-Saint. Puis, avec un profond respect, il entre et va se placer devant l’arche de l’Alliance. De façon figurée, il se trouve en présence de Jéhovah lui-même ! Puis il verse avec soin l’encens sacré sur les braises, et la pièce se remplit d’un parfum délicat. Plus tard, il va de nouveau entrer dans le Très-Saint avec du sang provenant des sacrifices pour le péché. Remarque qu’il brûle l’encens avant de présenter le sang des sacrifices pour le péché
      Qu’apprenons-nous de ce que le grand prêtre devait faire avec l’encens le jour de la Réconciliation ? La Bible montre que, pour Jéhovah, les prières de ses fidèles adorateurs sont comparables à de l’encens (Ps. 141:2 ; Rév. 5:8). Comme nous venons de le voir, c’était avec un profond respect que le grand prêtre apportait l’encens jusque devant l’arche de l’Alliance, qui symbolisait la présence de Jéhovah. De la même façon, quand nous nous approchons de Jéhovah par la prière, nous le faisons avec beaucoup de respect. Nous sommes très reconnaissants au Créateur de l’univers de nous permettre de nous approcher de lui comme un enfant le fait avec son père (Jacq. 4:8). Il accepte que nous soyons ses amis ! (Ps. 25:14). Nous apprécions tellement cet honneur que nous ne voudrions jamais le décevoir.
      Souviens-toi que le grand prêtre devait brûler l’encens avant de pouvoir offrir les sacrifices. Ainsi, il faisait le nécessaire pour avoir l’approbation de Dieu au moment où il les offrirait. Qu’est-ce que cela nous apprend au sujet de Jésus ? Avant de pouvoir offrir sa vie en sacrifice, il a fallu qu’il fasse quelque chose d’essentiel, dont l’objectif était bien plus important que le salut des humains. Qu’a-t-il dû faire ? Il a dû rester fidèle à Dieu et obéir à ses commandements durant toute sa vie sur terre, ce qui permettrait à Jéhovah d’accepter son sacrifice. En restant intègre, Jésus prouverait qu’accomplir la volonté de Jéhovah est la meilleure façon de vivre. Et il justifierait la souveraineté de son Père : il apporterait la preuve que sa façon de gouverner est bonne et juste.
      Durant sa vie sur la terre, Jésus a toujours obéi parfaitement aux normes de Jéhovah. Aucune tentation ni aucune épreuve, ni même la mort atroce qui l’attendait, n’a pu affaiblir son désir de défendre la façon de gouverner de son Père (Phil. 2:8). Dans l’épreuve, Jésus priait « avec des cris puissants et des larmes » (Héb. 5:7). Ses prières intenses venaient d’un cœur fidèle à Dieu, et elles renforçaient son désir de lui rester obéissant. Pour Jéhovah, les prières de Jésus étaient comme le parfum délicat de l’encens. Par sa façon de vivre, Jésus a grandement réjoui le cœur de son Père et a justifié sa souveraineté.
      Nous imiterons Jésus en faisant le maximum pour rester fidèles à Jéhovah et obéir à ses lois. Et dans l’épreuve, comme nous voulons lui plaire, nous le supplierons de nous aider. Nous montrerons alors que nous soutenons sa souveraineté. Nous savons qu’il ne répondra pas à nos prières si nous avons une conduite qu’il n’approuve pas. Cependant, si nous respectons ses normes, nous pouvons être sûrs que nos prières sincères seront pour lui comme de l’encens au parfum délicat. Nous pouvons également être certains que notre fidélité et notre obéissance réjouiront notre Père céleste (Prov. 27:11).
      NOUS SERVONS DIEU PAR RECONNAISSANCE ET PAR AMOUR
      Deuxième leçon : nous servons Jéhovah parce que nous éprouvons pour lui de la reconnaissance. Pour développer cette idée, parlons des sacrifices de paix, un autre aspect important du vrai culte dans l’ancien Israël. Dans le livre du Lévitique, nous apprenons qu’un Israélite pouvait offrir un sacrifice de paix « pour exprimer sa reconnaissance » à Dieu (Lév. 7:11-13, 16-18). Il offrait ce sacrifice, non pas parce qu’il était obligé de le faire, mais parce qu’il le voulait. Il s’agissait donc d’un sacrifice qu’une personne faisait volontairement parce qu’elle aimait son Dieu, Jéhovah. Cette personne ainsi que sa famille et les prêtres mangeaient ensuite la viande de l’animal sacrifié. Mais certaines parties de l’animal étaient réservées exclusivement à Jéhovah. Lesquelles ?
      Troisième leçon : par amour pour Jéhovah, nous lui donnons ce que nous avons de meilleur. Jéhovah considérait la graisse comme la meilleure partie de l’animal. Il a aussi fait savoir que d’autres parties de l’animal, comme les rognons, étaient particulièrement précieuses pour lui (lire Lévitique 3:6, 12, 14-16). Cela lui faisait donc très plaisir quand un Israélite lui offrait volontairement ces parties de l’animal et la graisse. Cet Israélite montrait qu’il désirait vraiment lui offrir le meilleur. De la même façon, Jésus a offert à Jéhovah ce qu’il avait de meilleur en le servant de toute son âme et par amour (Jean 14:31). Pour Jésus, faire la volonté de son Père était un plaisir ; il avait un amour profond pour la loi de Dieu (Ps. 40:8). Comme cela a dû réjouir Jéhovah de voir son Fils le servir avec autant d’enthousiasme !
      Comme ces sacrifices de paix, notre service pour Jéhovah est une façon de lui montrer ce que nous ressentons pour lui. Nous lui donnons ce que nous avons de meilleur, et nous le faisons parce que nous l’aimons de tout notre cœur. Comme cela doit le réjouir de voir des millions de personnes le servir avec plaisir parce qu’elles ont un profond amour pour lui et pour ses normes ! Cela nous réconforte de savoir que Jéhovah voit non seulement nos actions, mais aussi nos mobiles, et qu’il y accorde de la valeur. Par exemple, si tu es âgé et que tu ne peux plus en faire autant qu’avant, sois certain que Jéhovah comprend tes limites. Tu penses peut-être que tu n’as pas grand-chose à lui offrir. Mais lui, il voit que ton profond amour pour lui te pousse à faire ce que tu peux. Il accepte avec plaisir ce que tu as de mieux à lui donner.
      Que nous apprennent les sacrifices de paix ? Alors que le feu consumait les meilleures parties de l’animal, la fumée s’élevait vers le ciel et cela faisait très plaisir à Jéhovah. Tu peux donc être sûr que Jéhovah est vraiment content de toi quand tu fais tout ce que tu peux pour le servir (Col. 3:23). Imagine son sourire d’approbation. Il considère comme très précieux les efforts que tu fournis à son service, qu’ils soient grands ou petits, et il ne les oubliera jamais (Mat. 6:20 ; Héb. 6:10).
      JÉHOVAH BÉNIT SON ORGANISATION
      Quatrième leçon : Jéhovah bénit la partie terrestre de son organisation. Rappelle-toi ce qui est arrivé en 1512 avant notre ère, quand le tabernacle a été dressé au pied du mont Sinaï (Ex. 40:17). Moïse a présidé une cérémonie durant laquelle Aaron et ses fils ont été établis prêtres. La nation d’Israël s’était rassemblée pour voir les prêtres présenter leurs premiers sacrifices (Lév. 9:1-5). Comment Jéhovah a-t-il montré qu’il approuvait cette nouvelle prêtrise ? Alors qu’Aaron et Moïse bénissaient le peuple, Jéhovah a fait descendre du ciel un feu qui a complètement consumé le sacrifice sur l’autel (Lévitique 9:23,24)
      Dans quel objectif Jéhovah a-t-il provoqué ce spectacle impressionnant à la fin de la cérémonie durant laquelle Aaron a été établi grand prêtre ? Il voulait montrer par là qu’il soutenait pleinement la prêtrise aaronique. Et les Israélites ont clairement vu qu’elle avait son approbation. Ils avaient donc toutes les raisons de la soutenir eux aussi. Est-ce important pour nous de savoir cela ? Oui ! La prêtrise en Israël n’était qu’une « ombre » d’une prêtrise bien meilleure. Le Christ est le Grand Prêtre par excellence et 144 000 humains seront prêtres et rois à ses côtés au ciel (Héb. 4:14 ; 8:3-5 ; 10:1).
      En 1919, Jésus a choisi un petit groupe de frères oints pour former l’« esclave fidèle et avisé ». Cet esclave dirige la prédication et donne aux disciples du Christ « leur nourriture au bon moment » (Mat. 24:45). Avons-nous des preuves que Dieu l’approuve
      Satan et son monde font tout ce qu’ils peuvent pour empêcher cet esclave d’assumer ses responsabilités, à tel point que, sans l’aide de Dieu, il n’y arriverait pas. Toutefois, malgré deux guerres mondiales, des persécutions incessantes, des crises économiques mondiales et des traitements injustes, il continue de fournir de la nourriture spirituelle aux disciples du Christ sur la terre. Pense à toute la nourriture spirituelle qui est aujourd’hui disponible gratuitement dans plus de 900 langues ! C’est une preuve incontestable du soutien de Dieu. Et voici une autre preuve encore : la prédication. La bonne nouvelle est prêchée « sur toute la terre » ! (Mat. 24:14). Il n’y a pas de doute, Jéhovah guide et bénit abondamment son organisation.
      Demandons-nous : « Suis-je reconnaissant à Dieu de pouvoir collaborer avec la partie terrestre de son organisation ? » Jéhovah nous donne des preuves qu’il la soutient, des preuves aussi convaincantes que le feu qui est descendu du ciel à l’époque de Moïse et d’Aaron. Nous avons de nombreuses raisons d’être reconnaissants à notre Dieu (1 Thess. 5:18, 19). Comment pouvons-nous soutenir l’organisation qu’il utilise ? En suivant les conseils basés sur la Bible qui nous sont donnés dans nos publications, aux réunions et aux assemblées, ainsi qu’en participant le plus possible à l’activité de prédication et d’enseignement (1 Cor. 15:58).
      Soyons déterminés à appliquer les leçons que nous avons tirées du livre du Lévitique. Cherchons à obtenir l’approbation de Jéhovah pour qu’il accepte nos sacrifices. Servons-le par reconnaissance. Continuons de lui donner par amour ce que nous avons de meilleur. Et soutenons de tout notre cœur l’organisation qu’il bénit. Nous lui montrerons alors que nous chérissons l’honneur de le servir et d’être ses Témoins !
      · 0 replies
    • Eric Ouellet

      Soyons remplis de gratitude envers autrui 
       
      AVEZ-VOUS déjà reçu un petit mot de reconnaissance auquel vous ne vous attendiez pas ? Si c’est le cas, cela vous a certainement fait chaud au cœur. Après tout, il est naturel de vouloir être apprécié. — Matthieu 25:19-23.
      Toute expression de gratitude tend à renforcer les liens entre celui qui en est l’auteur et celui qui en est le destinataire. En outre, quiconque manifeste de la gratitude suit les traces de Jésus Christ, qui n’a jamais manqué de remarquer les belles œuvres des autres. — Marc 14:3-9 ; Luc 21:1-4.
      Malheureusement, exprimer sa gratitude, de vive voix ou par écrit, semble se faire de plus en plus rare. La Bible avait annoncé que, durant “ les derniers jours ”, les hommes seraient “ ingrats ”. (2 Timothée 3:1, 2.) Si nous n’y prenons pas garde, cette tendance si répandue aujourd’hui risque d’étouffer en nous tout sentiment de reconnaissance.
      Quelles mesures concrètes les parents peuvent-ils adopter pour enseigner à leurs enfants à manifester de la reconnaissance ? À qui devrions-nous exprimer notre gratitude ? Et pourquoi devrions-nous être reconnaissants, même si ceux qui nous entourent se révèlent ingrats ?
      Dans le cercle familial
      Les parents ne ménagent pas leurs efforts pour subvenir aux besoins de leurs enfants. Mais il leur arrive d’avoir le sentiment que ces efforts ne sont pas appréciés à leur juste valeur. Que faire pour remédier à cette situation ? Trois paramètres sont à prendre en compte.
      1) L’exemple. Comme cela se vérifie souvent en matière d’éducation, la réussite passe par l’exemple. La Bible disait jadis d’une Israélite travailleuse : “ Ses fils ont voulu la féliciter. ” Où ces enfants avaient-ils appris à exprimer leur reconnaissance ? La suite du verset nous éclaire : “ Son mari est le premier à la louer. ” (Proverbes 31:28, Bible des Peuples). Les parents qui s’expriment de la reconnaissance montrent à leurs enfants que ce genre de témoignage procure du plaisir à celui qui en est l’objet, améliore les relations familiales et constitue un signe de maturité.
      Stephen, un père de famille, déclare : “ Je me suis efforcé de donner l’exemple à mes enfants en remerciant ma femme pour le dîner. ” Qu’en est-il résulté ? “ Mes deux filles l’ont remarqué, et cela leur a fait prendre conscience de l’importance de se montrer reconnaissant ”, dit-il. Si vous êtes marié, remerciez-vous régulièrement votre conjoint pour les tâches quotidiennes qu’il accomplit et qui auraient vite fait de passer inaperçues ? Dites-vous merci à vos enfants, même lorsqu’ils font ce qu’on attend d’eux ?
      2) L’éducation. Le sentiment de reconnaissance est comme une fleur. Il a besoin d’être cultivé pour produire les meilleurs résultats possibles. Comment les parents peuvent-ils aider leurs enfants à cultiver et à exprimer de la reconnaissance ? Le sage roi Salomon a mis en évidence un principe clé lorsqu’il a écrit : “ Le cœur du juste médite pour répondre. ” — Proverbes 15:28.
      Pouvez-vous apprendre à vos enfants à songer aux efforts et à la générosité qui ont précédé chaque cadeau qu’ils reçoivent ? Ce genre de réflexion constitue le sol dans lequel la gratitude s’enracine. Maria, qui a élevé trois enfants, constate : “ Cela prend du temps d’expliquer à ses enfants tout ce que signifie recevoir un cadeau : qu’une personne a pensé à eux en particulier et qu’elle a souhaité leur montrer à quel point elle s’intéresse à eux. Mais je suis convaincue que ça en vaut la peine. ” Grâce à de tels échanges, les enfants apprennent non seulement quoi dire pour exprimer leur reconnaissance, mais aussi pourquoi ils doivent le faire.
      Il est sage, pour des parents, de faire en sorte que leurs enfants n’aient pas le sentiment que tout ce qu’ils reçoivent de bon leur revient, finalement, de droit. L’avertissement figurant en Proverbes 29:21 à propos de la manière de traiter son serviteur s’applique tout autant aux enfants : “ Si l’on gâte son serviteur dès sa jeunesse, par la suite dans sa vie il deviendra un ingrat. ”
      Comment aider de très jeunes enfants à témoigner de la reconnaissance ? Linda, mère de trois enfants, explique : “ Mon mari et moi avons encouragé nos enfants à s’associer à nous quand nous écrivions des cartes de remerciement, en y joignant un dessin ou en les signant. ” Naturellement, le dessin sera peut-être simple, et l’écriture approximative, mais la leçon que les enfants tireront de ce geste restera gravée en eux.
      3) La persévérance. Nous avons tous une tendance innée à l’égoïsme, qui risque d’étouffer en nous tout élan de gratitude (Genèse 8:21 ; Matthieu 15:19). Mais la Bible adresse aux serviteurs de Dieu cette exhortation : “ Vous devez être renouvelés dans la force qui anime votre intelligence et revêtir la personnalité nouvelle qui a été créée selon la volonté de Dieu. ” — Éphésiens 4:23, 24.
      Les parents expérimentés savent, toutefois, qu’aider les enfants à “ revêtir la personnalité nouvelle ” est plus facile à dire qu’à faire. Stephen, cité plus haut, déclare : “ Il nous semblait que nos filles mettaient du temps à dire spontanément merci, sans qu’on ait besoin de le leur rappeler. ” Mais lui et sa femme n’ont pas abandonné. “ Notre persévérance a payé, poursuit Stephen : nos filles ont retenu la leçon. Aujourd’hui, nous sommes fiers de la manière dont elles manifestent leur gratitude aux autres. ”
      Envers les amis et le prochain
      Lorsque nous oublions de dire merci, ce n’est pas forcément par manque de reconnaissance, mais parfois simplement par négligence. En définitive, du moment que nous éprouvons de la gratitude, est-il si important que cela de l’exprimer ? Pour répondre à cette question, considérons ce qui s’est passé un jour où Jésus a guéri des lépreux.
      Alors qu’il se rendait à Jérusalem, Jésus a rencontré dix hommes atteints de lèpre. La Bible relate : “ Ils élevèrent la voix et dirent : ‘ Jésus, Instructeur, aie pitié de nous ! ’ Et lorsqu’il les vit, il leur dit : ‘ Allez vous montrer aux prêtres. ’ Or, comme ils s’en allaient, leur purification eut lieu. L’un d’eux, quand il vit qu’il était guéri, revint sur ses pas, glorifiant Dieu d’une voix forte. Et il tomba sur sa face aux pieds de Jésus, en le remerciant ; or, c’était un Samaritain. ” — Luc 17:11-16.
      Jésus n’a-t-il accordé aucune importance au fait que les autres n’aient pas exprimé de gratitude ? Le récit poursuit : “ En réponse Jésus dit : ‘ Les dix ont été purifiés, n’est-ce pas ? Où sont donc les neuf autres ? Ne s’est-il trouvé personne pour revenir rendre gloire à Dieu, que cet homme d’une autre nation ? ’ ” — Luc 17:17, 18.
      Les neuf autres lépreux n’étaient pas des hommes méchants. Auparavant, ils avaient ouvertement exprimé leur foi en Jésus et avaient suivi de bon gré ses instructions, qui exigeaient qu’ils se rendent à Jérusalem pour se montrer aux prêtres. Or, même s’ils ont indéniablement éprouvé une profonde gratitude pour ce que Jésus avait fait, ils ne la lui ont pas exprimée. Leur comportement a déçu Christ. Et nous ? Quand quelqu’un se montre bon à notre égard, sommes-nous prompts à dire merci et, si cela s’y prête, à lui montrer notre reconnaissance en lui envoyant une petite carte ?
      La Bible dit que l’amour “ ne fait rien d’inconvenant. Il ne cherche pas son propre intérêt ”. (1 Corinthiens 13:5, Bible du Semeur.) Par conséquent, un témoignage de reconnaissance donné avec sincérité non seulement traduit un respect des convenances, mais aussi est une preuve d’amour. Comme nous l’apprend l’exemple des lépreux, ceux qui souhaitent plaire à Christ doivent exprimer un tel amour et une telle reconnaissance à tous, indépendamment de leur nationalité, de leur race ou de leur religion.
      Posez-vous la question : ‘ Quand ai-je pour la dernière fois remercié un voisin, un collègue de travail, un camarade de classe, un membre du personnel hospitalier, un commerçant ou qui que ce soit d’autre qui me soit venu en aide ? ’ Pourquoi ne pas noter pendant un jour ou deux le nombre de fois où vous dites effectivement merci ou exprimez votre reconnaissance d’une façon ou d’une autre  ? Peut-être verrez-vous la nécessité de vous améliorer dans certains domaines.
      Bien entendu, celui qui mérite le plus de remerciements de notre part, c’est Jéhovah Dieu. De lui vient “ tout beau don et tout présent parfait ”. (Jacques 1:17.) À quand remonte la dernière fois où vous avez sincèrement remercié Dieu pour avoir fait quelque chose de particulier en votre faveur ? — 1 Thessaloniciens 5:17, 18.
      Pourquoi se montrer reconnaissant même quand les autres sont ingrats ?
      Nos témoignages de reconnaissance ne seront pas forcément payés de retour. Par conséquent, pourquoi manifester notre gratitude si nous sommes les seuls à le faire ? Arrêtons-nous simplement sur une bonne raison d’agir ainsi.
      Faire du bien à ceux qui ne sont pas enclins à la gratitude, c’est imiter notre Créateur bienveillant, Jéhovah Dieu. Que beaucoup ne soient pas sensibles à l’amour que Jéhovah leur témoigne ne l’empêche pas de leur faire du bien (Romains 5:8 ; 1 Jean 4:9, 10). Il fait “ lever son soleil sur les méchants et sur les bons et [...] fait pleuvoir sur les justes et sur les injustes ”. Si, bien que vivant dans un monde ingrat, nous nous efforçons d’éprouver et d’exprimer de la gratitude, nous nous montrerons “ fils de [notre] Père qui est dans les cieux ”. — Matthieu 5:45.

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    • Eric Ouellet

      Enracinons nous dans la foi comme un arbre luxuriant.
      EN ISRAËL pousse un arbre presque indestructible. Même lorsqu’on l’abat, sa souche ne tarde pas à produire de nouvelles pousses. Par ailleurs, ses fruits fournissent une grande quantité d’huile utile tant pour la cuisine et l’éclairage que pour l’hygiène et les soins de beauté.
      Selon une parabole des temps bibliques consignée dans le livre des Juges, “ un jour les arbres s’en allèrent pour oindre un roi sur eux ”. Quel arbre choisirent-ils ? Le résistant et fertile olivier. — Juges 9:8.
      Il y a plus de 3 500 ans, le prophète Moïse décrivait Israël comme “ un bon pays, [...] un pays d’olives ”. (Deutéronome 8:7, 8.) Aujourd’hui encore, du pied du mont Hermôn à la campagne de Béershéba en passant par la plaine côtière du Sharôn, les pentes rocailleuses de la Samarie et les vallées fertiles de la Galilée, le paysage est parsemé d’oliveraies du nord au sud.
      Les rédacteurs de la Bible ont souvent parlé de l’olivier dans un sens figuré pour illustrer, par exemple, la miséricorde de Dieu, la promesse de la résurrection ou encore le bonheur familial. L’examen de quelques-unes de ses caractéristiques nous aidera à mieux comprendre ces références et à apprécier cet arbre exceptionnel qui fait honneur au Créateur. — Psaume 148:7, 9.
      Un arbre robuste
      L’olivier n’est pas spécialement impressionnant à première vue. Il n’a pas la majesté des vertigineux cèdres du Liban, son bois n’a pas la qualité du genévrier ni ses fleurs la beauté de celles de l’amandier (Chant de Salomon 1:17 ; Amos 2:9). En fait, sa partie la plus importante demeure invisible, puisque le secret de sa résistance et de sa grande prolificité réside dans ses longues racines, qui peuvent s’enfoncer jusqu’à six mètres sous terre et rayonner plus loin encore.
      Ses racines permettent à l’olivier poussant sur des versants rocailleux de survivre à la sécheresse quand d’autres arbres situés au fond de la vallée sont déjà morts de soif. Elles lui permettent également de produire des olives des siècles durant, même lorsque son tronc noueux ne semble plus bon qu’à servir de bois de chauffage. Tout ce dont cet arbre rustique a besoin, c’est de place pour pousser et d’un sol aéré pour respirer, loin des mauvaises herbes et autres plantes qui peuvent abriter des parasites. Si ces conditions simples sont réunies, un seul arbre peut fournir jusqu’à 60 litres d’huile par an.
      Cette huile était manifestement appréciée des Israélites. Ils s’en servaient pour éclairer leur intérieur à l’aide de lampes à mèches, pour cuisiner, pour protéger leur peau du soleil et pour fabriquer du savon (Lévitique 24:2). Étant donné que le blé, le vin et l’olive constituaient les principales productions de la région, une mauvaise récolte d’olives était une catastrophe pour une famille israélite. — Deutéronome 7:13 ; Habaqouq 3:17.
      Cependant, en général, l’huile d’olive ne manquait pas. Sans doute Moïse a-t-il décrit la Terre promise comme “ un pays d’olives ” parce que l’olivier y était l’arbre le plus cultivé. Au XIXe siècle, le naturaliste Henry Tristram a d’ailleurs qualifié l’olivier d’arbre emblématique de la région ”. En raison de sa valeur et de sa profusion, l’huile d’olive servait même de moyen de paiement dans tout le bassin méditerranéen. De là, l’allusion de Jésus Christ à une dette de “ cent baths d’huile d’olive ”. — Luc 16:5, 6.
      “ Comme des plants d’olivier ”
      L’olivier illustre de façon appropriée les bénédictions divines. Comment l’homme qui craint Dieu serait-il récompensé ? “ Ta femme sera comme une vigne qui porte du fruit tout au fond de ta maison, a chanté un psalmiste. Tes fils seront comme des plants d’olivier autour de ta table. ” (Psaume 128:3). Que sont ces “ plants d’olivier ”, et pourquoi le psalmiste les comparait-il à des fils ?
      L’olivier a ceci de particulier que de nouvelles pousses sortent continuellement de la base de son tronc. Lorsque, en raison de son âge, le tronc principal ne produit plus autant qu’auparavant, les cultivateurs peuvent laisser plusieurs plants, ou nouvelles pousses, se développer jusqu’à devenir partie intégrante de l’arbre. Au bout d’un certain temps, trois ou quatre nouveaux troncs vigoureux entoureront celui d’origine, comme des fils autour d’une table. Ces plants issus de la même souche produisent ensemble une grande quantité d’olives.
      Cette caractéristique de l’olivier illustre bien la façon dont les fils et les filles peuvent devenir fermes dans la foi, grâce aux robustes racines spirituelles de leurs parents. En grandissant, eux aussi portent du fruit et épaulent leurs parents, qui se réjouissent de les voir servir Jéhovah à leurs côtés. — Proverbes 15:20.
      “ Il existe un espoir même pour un arbre ”
      Un père âgé qui sert Jéhovah se réjouit que ses enfants adorent Dieu. Mais quelle tristesse quand ce père finit par ‘ s’en aller par le chemin de toute la terre ’ ! (1 Rois 2:2.) La Bible nous aide à surmonter pareille douleur en nous donnant l’assurance qu’il y aura une résurrection. — Jean 5:28, 29 ; 11:25.
      Job, père de nombreux enfants, était très conscient de la brièveté de la vie, qu’il a comparée à une fleur qui se flétrit rapidement (Job 1:2 ; 14:1, 2). Job désirait la mort pour se soustraire à ses souffrances, considérant la tombe comme une cachette d’où il pourrait revenir. “ Si un homme robuste meurt, peut-il revivre ? ” a-t-il demandé. Et d’exprimer sa confiance : “ Tous les jours de ma corvée, j’attendrai, jusqu’à ce que vienne ma relève. Tu [Jéhovah] appelleras, et moi je te répondrai. Tu languiras après l’œuvre de tes mains. ” — Job 14:13-15.
      Comment Job a-t-il illustré sa conviction que Dieu le rappellerait de la tombe ? Au moyen d’un arbre, dont la description correspond apparemment à celle de l’olivier. “ Il existe un espoir même pour un arbre. Si on le coupe, il bourgeonnera encore. ” (Job 14:7). Pour peu qu’il ne soit pas déraciné, l’olivier peut effectivement être coupé sans que cela le fasse mourir. Si ses racines demeurent intactes, il repoussera avec une vigueur renouvelée.
      Même si une sécheresse prolongée dessèche profondément un vieil olivier, la souche ratatinée peut repartir. “ Si sa racine vieillit dans la terre et si sa souche meurt dans la poussière, à l’odeur de l’eau, il bourgeonnera, oui il produira une branche comme une plante nouvelle. ” (Job 14:8, 9). Job vivait dans une région aride et poussiéreuse où il avait probablement dû observer beaucoup de vieux oliviers complètement desséchés qui semblaient morts. Cependant, dès qu’arrivaient les pluies, ils revenaient à la vie, et un nouveau tronc émergeait de leurs racines “ comme une plante nouvelle ”. Cette résistance hors du commun a conduit un horticulteur tunisien à déclarer : “ Il n’est pas exagéré de dire que les oliviers sont immortels. ”
      Tout comme un cultivateur espère voir renaître ses oliviers desséchés, Jéhovah languit de ressusciter ses serviteurs. Il attend avec patience l’époque où des fidèles comme Abraham et Sara, Isaac et Rébecca, et de nombreux autres seront ramenés à la vie (Matthieu 22:31, 32). Comme il sera merveilleux d’accueillir les ressuscités et de les voir mener de nouveau une vie productive !
      L’olivier symbolique
      La miséricorde de Dieu est manifeste dans son impartialité ainsi que dans la disposition qu’est la résurrection. L’apôtre Paul s’est servi de l’olivier pour illustrer comment la miséricorde de Jéhovah s’étend aux humains indifféremment de leur race ou de leur origine. Pendant des siècles, les Juifs se sont enorgueillis d’être le peuple choisi de Dieu, “ la descendance d’Abraham ”. — Jean 8:33 ; Luc 3:8.
      Il n’était pas nécessaire d’être né au sein de la nation juive pour obtenir la faveur divine. Les premiers disciples de Jésus, cependant, étaient tous Juifs et ils ont eu le privilège de figurer parmi les premiers humains choisis par Dieu pour constituer la semence promise d’Abraham (Genèse 22:18 ; Galates 3:29). Paul les a comparés aux branches d’un olivier.
      La majorité des Juifs de naissance ont rejeté Jésus, se privant ainsi de la possibilité de faire partie du “ petit troupeau ”, ou “ Israël de Dieu ”. (Luc 12:32 ; Galates 6:16.) Ils sont devenus comme des branches d’olivier qui auraient été coupées. Qui allait prendre leur place ? En 36 de notre ère, des Gentils ont été choisis pour faire partie de la semence d’Abraham, comme si Jéhovah avait greffé des branches d’olivier sauvage sur un olivier domestique. La semence promise d’Abraham inclurait donc des gens des nations qui pouvaient désormais devenir ‘ participants de la racine de graisse de l’olivier ’. — Romains 11:17.
      Pour un cultivateur, greffer une branche d’olivier sauvage sur un olivier domestique serait impensable et “ contre nature ”. (Romains 11:24.) On lit dans La terre et le Livre (angl.) : “ Greffe le bon sur le sauvage, ont coutume de dire les Arabes, et il dominera le sauvage, mais tu ne pourras pas revenir en arrière. ” Les chrétiens d’origine juive ont été surpris lorsque Jéhovah, “ pour la première fois, s’est occupé des nations pour tirer d’entre elles un peuple pour son nom ”. (Actes 10:44-48 ; 15:14.) C’était la preuve évidente, toutefois, que la réalisation du dessein de Dieu ne dépendait pas d’une nation particulière. En effet, “ en toute nation l’homme qui le craint et pratique la justice est agréé de lui ”. — Actes 10:35.
      Paul a souligné que puisque les “ branches ” juives infidèles de l’olivier avaient été coupées la même chose pourrait arriver à toute personne qui, par orgueil ou désobéissance, perdrait la faveur de Jéhovah (Romains 11:19, 20). Cela montre sans l’ombre d’un doute que la faveur imméritée de Dieu ne devrait jamais être considérée comme définitivement acquise. — 2 Corinthiens 6:1.
      Enduire d’huile
      Les Écritures mentionnent l’utilisation de l’huile d’olive non seulement au sens littéral, mais également au sens figuré. Dans les temps anciens, les blessures et les contusions étaient “ adoucies avec de l’huile ” pour accélérer la cicatrisation (Isaïe 1:6). D’après un exemple de Jésus, le bon Samaritain a versé de l’huile et du vin sur les blessures de l’homme qu’il avait trouvé sur la route de Jéricho. — Luc 10:34.
      L’application d’huile sur la tête est rafraîchissante et relaxante (Psaume 141:5). Lorsqu’ils ont à traiter un cas de faiblesse spirituelle, les anciens peuvent ‘ enduire d’huile un membre de la congrégation, au nom de Jéhovah ’. (Jacques 5:14.) Leurs conseils bibliques pleins d’amour et leurs prières sincères en faveur de leur compagnon sont comparables à de l’huile versée sur des plaies. Détail révélateur, en hébreu, “ huile d’olive pure ” est une expression imagée qui sert à désigner un homme bon.
      “ Un olivier luxuriant dans la maison de Dieu ”
      Compte tenu de ce qui précède, il n’est pas surprenant que les serviteurs de Dieu puissent être comparés à des oliviers. David désirait ressembler à “ un olivier luxuriant dans la maison de Dieu ”. (Psaume 52:8.) Tout comme les familles israélites avaient souvent des oliviers autour de leur maison, David souhaitait être proche de Jéhovah pour produire du fruit à sa louange. — Psaume 52:9.
      Tant qu’il est resté fidèle à Jéhovah, le royaume de Juda était comme un “ olivier luxuriant, beau par le fruit et par la forme ”. (Jérémie 11:15, 16.) Mais ses habitants ont perdu leur position privilégiée lorsqu’ils ‘ ont refusé d’obéir aux paroles de Jéhovah et ont marché à la suite d’autres dieux ’. — Jérémie 11:10.
      Pour devenir comme des oliviers luxuriants dans la maison de Dieu, nous devons obéir à Jéhovah et accepter de bon gré la discipline par laquelle il nous “ taille ”, afin que nous puissions porter davantage de fruit en œuvres chrétiennes (Hébreux 12:5, 6). En outre, tout comme un olivier doit avoir de longues racines pour survivre à une période de sécheresse, nous devons fortifier nos racines spirituelles pour endurer les épreuves et la persécution. — Matthieu 13:21 ; Colossiens 2:6, 7.
      L’olivier symbolise bien le chrétien fidèle, inconnu du monde mais connu de Dieu. S’il vient à mourir dans ce système, il reviendra à la vie dans le monde nouveau à venir. — 2 Corinthiens 6:9 ; 2 Pierre 3:13.
      L’olivier, presque indestructible, qui continue de donner du fruit année après année nous rappelle la promesse de Dieu : “ Les jours de mon peuple seront comme les jours d’un arbre ; et ceux que j’ai choisis profiteront pleinement de l’œuvre de leurs mains. ” (Isaïe 65:22). Cette promesse prophétique s’accomplira dans le monde nouveau de Dieu. — 2 Pierre 3:13.


      · 0 replies
    • folens  »  Eric Ouellet

      Hello Eric merci pour ces bons sujets. Bonne journée Michel

      JAH pas un collectionneur.docx
      · 1 reply
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