Time Magazine has just run an article about afterlife topics (soul, psyche, Sheol, Gehenna, heaven, hell) that mirrors almost exactly Watchtower publicationsBy TrueTomHarley
After praising me for bringing the thread back on topic, JWI will maybe curse me for branching it off again—and Arauna, too, for that matter, because it really is a branch. He may even use his secret powers to make this a separate thread—I could live with that if he did.
The fork in the road here is Aruana’s link to Time Magazine. Enticed by an absurdly low rate, I subscribed to Time two years ago, with the thought I would cancel when the auto-renewal hit. When it hit, I did cancel, because the magazine—once a powerhouse, now upstaged amidst the digital revolution, seemed no more than “same-old same-old” to me. My curiosity had been peaked by the low subscription rate.
I think it is because a sale was pending. Mark Benoif has bought it, he who is the Salesforce company founder—a guy worth 6 billion, I am told. He joins Bezos who bought the Washington Post, and Lourene Jobs (widow of Steve) who bought a majority stake in Atlantic.
Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. Not sure how the new owners will change the brands they bought, however Time Magazine has just run an article about afterlife topics (soul, psyche, Sheol, Gehenna, heaven, hell) that mirrors almost exactly Watchtower publications—I can’t picture this in the old Time (or in fact, anywhere).
And—the author is my new nemesis: Bart Ehrman! The occasion is the release of his latest book (he has over 30) ‘Heaven and Hell.’
Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. I have not been especially kind to Bart, and maybe I should walk some of it back. Or maybe I should double down. Is he coming around in his views? Or is he (more likely, I think, but only suggested—far from proof) ripping off the views of the Watchtower without crediting them?
Not that he would accept the Watchtower as a source in itself, I don’t think. But what I can easily picture is him keeping abreast of their writing and the explanations that only they have, then tracing it back to original sources, whereupon he verifies it all and presents it as though his own research—which it would be, minus the credit for who put him on the right track in the first place.
A few segments for the Time article, which I think is quoted directly from his book:
Neither Jesus, nor the Hebrew Bible he interpreted, endorsed the view that departed souls go to paradise or everlasting pain.
Unlike most Greeks, ancient Jews traditionally did not believe the soul could exist at all apart from the body. On the contrary, for them, the soul was more like the “breath.” The first human God created, Adam, began as a lump of clay; then God “breathed” life into him (Genesis 2: 7). Adam remained alive until he stopped breathing. Then it was dust to dust, ashes to ashes.
Ancient Jews thought that was true of us all. When we stop breathing, our breath doesn’t go anywhere. It just stops. So too the “soul” doesn’t continue on outside the body, subject to postmortem pleasure or pain. It doesn’t exist any longer.
The Hebrew Bible itself assumes that the dead are simply dead—that their body lies in the grave, and there is no consciousness, ever again. It is true that some poetic authors, for example in the Psalms, use the mysterious term “Sheol” to describe a person’s new location. But in most instances Sheol is simply a synonym for “tomb” or “grave.” It’s not a place where someone actually goes.
Most people today would be surprised to learn that Jesus believed in a bodily eternal life here on earth, instead of eternal bliss for souls, but even more that he did not believe in hell as a place of eternal torment.
In traditional English versions, he does occasionally seem to speak of “Hell” – for example, in his warnings in the Sermon on the Mount: anyone who calls another a fool, or who allows their right eye or hand to sin, will be cast into “hell” (Matthew 5:22, 29-30). But these passages are not actually referring to “hell.” The word Jesus uses is “Gehenna.” The term does not refer to a place of eternal torment but to a notorious valley just outside the walls of Jerusalem, believed by many Jews at the time to be the most unholy, god-forsaken place on earth. It was where, according to the Old Testament, ancient Israelites practiced child sacrifice to foreign gods. The God of Israel had condemned and forsaken the place.
In the ancient world (whether Greek, Roman, or Jewish), the worst punishment a person could experience after death was to be denied a decent burial. Jesus developed this view into a repugnant scenario: corpses of those excluded from the kingdom would be unceremoniously tossed into the most desecrated dumping ground on the planet. Jesus did not say souls would be tortured there. They simply would no longer exist.”
Is Bart just taking our stuff? You know, I think he is. If I do a quick search of this site—
Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. , nothing about Jehovah’s Witnesses comes up, apart from a post about the name Jehovah itself, where he misses entirely the import of God having a name rather than a title, to focus on its Latin letters, and thus declaring it “false.” But I found nothing else. Nobody espousing on these ‘afterlife’ views like Jehovah’s Witnesses, and apart from them almost nobody does—and yet he never mentions them. I suspect we have found the ‘secret source’ that points him to much of his scholarship. Where are these items found in our own literature? I find it hard to keep track of anything, these days, now that all is digitalized and we have taking to presenting matters in bitesize tidbits. Basic study guides will show up much of it, however, and certainly the Insight Book—a Bible encyclopedia. But a favorite of my for being both concise and complete is the 1974 book ‘Is This Life All There Is?’ We were there light years ahead of him, on all topics except for those in which he is muddled, such as:
“Some thinkers came up with a solution that explained how God would bring about justice, but again one that didn’t involve perpetual bliss in a heaven above or perpetual torment in a hell below. This new idea maintained that there are evil forces in the world aligned against God and determined to afflict his people. Even though God is the ultimate ruler over all, he has temporarily relinquished control of this world for some mysterious reason. But the forces of evil have little time left. God is soon to intervene in earthly affairs to destroy everything and everyone that opposes him and to bring in a new realm for his true followers, a Kingdom of God, a paradise on earth. Most important, this new earthly kingdom will come not only to those alive at the time, but also to those who have died. Indeed, God will breathe life back into the dead, restoring them to an earthly existence.” (italics and bolded text mine. “Some mysterious reason”—he doesn’t know that?! after nailing it on so many other points)
Not to mention his muddled:
“And God will bring all the dead back to life, not just the righteous. The multitude who had been opposed to God will also be raised, but for a different reason: to see the errors of their ways and be judged. Once they are shocked and filled with regret – but too late — they will permanently be wiped out of existence.” Sigh...it is as Anthony Morris said: “just stick with publications of the slave, and you will be alright.” The moment he goes off-script he comes up with some half-baked “nah nah—told ya so!” diatribe from his born-again days.
Part of me wants to get my head around this more. Frankly, he’s got a good gig going—I’m jealous over some of it—and so I wonder where his head is at. He presents as an agnostic/atheist in his Great Courses lecture series. I’ve written about ten posts, none of them kind, with several more in the hopper that I may or may not ever get to. Most of them I posted here as well as on my site, but I can find them easier on my site:
Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. Now—back to those Uyghurs...
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!
Honestly, JWs. This is a man who told lies about the organization’s problem with child abuse. Now, he is blatantly exalting himself above Christ and his authority. If any of you believe you will receive eternal life by “sticking close” to this false christ/prophet, and not Jesus Christ, I fear for your lives. Will you continue to look the other way and excuse his and all of the GB’s actions, thinking that God will correct them? God looks at us individually and views OUR choice to serve Him and His Son, or to serve men who expect obedience to them. (Joel 3:14)
“Beware of the teachers of the law. They like to walk around in flowing robes and love to be greeted with respect in the marketplaces and have the most important seats in the synagogues and the places of honor at banquets. 47 They devour widows’ houses and for a show make lengthy prayers. These men will be punished most severely.” Luke 20:46,47
“Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves.” Matt 7:15
“Beware lest anyone cheat you through philosophy and empty deceit, according to the tradition of men, according to the basic principles of the world, and not according to Christ.” Col 2:8
“Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. 22 Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ 23 And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’ Matt 7:21-23
Then the Lord said to me, “The prophets are prophesying lies in my name. I have not sent them or appointed them or spoken to them. They are prophesying to you false visions, divinations, idolatries and the delusions of their own minds. Jer 14:14
"Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse those with leprosy, drive out demons. Freely you received, freely give.” Matt 10:8
The message in this video fits the governing leaders in the organization, like a glove. Please read the WT quote in the description under the video. Notice how the organization’s practice of hypocrisy, has come back to bite them. Amos 5:18-27
WT 2/1/1990, pg 25:
"19 The worldliness of some clergy has even been exposed in the media in recent times, as for example the licentious and luxurious life-styles of some TV clergymen. One modern songwriter composed a song with the title: “Would Jesus Wear a [$10,000] Rolex [watch] on His Television Show?” The song goes on to say: “Would Jesus be political if He came back to earth, have His second home in [luxurious] Palm Springs and try to hide His worth?” In addition, more and more clergymen condone or practice homosexuality. Even now the Catholic Church in the United States is paying millions of dollars in damages to compensate for priests guilty of sexual abuse of children.—Romans Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. -27; 1 Corinthians 6:9, 10. "
“Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are sexual immorality, impurity, licentiousness, 20 idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambition, dissension, factions, 21 envy, drunkenness, carousing, and things like these, things which I am telling you in advance, just as I said before, that the ones who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.” Gal 5:19-21
The wicked appear rich, powerful, and glorious.
The faithful, appear despised, weak, and foolish
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Why those contrasting appearances?
Who is it, that rules over the desire of the eyes? Who is it that bestows worldly glory, dominion, power, and riches?
The unfaithful have a respectable appearance, because they have failed the test of Satan (Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. ). In contrast, the faithful, are given the glory of Christ (Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. ).
Pearl Doxsey – Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content.
“Sources of Persecution against the Holy Ones / Why must the faithful, die?”
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.
It does not say the evil Slave will be beating the Domestics.
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).
ACTS 2 V 16 , 17 & 18.
On the contrary, this is what was said through the prophet Joel: 17 ‘“And in the last days,” God says, “I will pour out some of my spirit on every sort of flesh, and your sons and your daughters will prophesy and your young men will see visions and your old men will dream dreams,Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. 18 and even on my male slaves and on my female slaves I will pour out some of my spirit in those days, and they will prophesy
Jerusalem had the end of it's 'last days' in 70 C. E. But prior to that a 'miracle' happened. Acts 2 v 1 through 11.
Now while the day of the Festival of Pentecost was in progress, they were all together at the same place. 2 Suddenly there was a noise from heaven, just like that of a rushing, stiff breeze, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. 3 And tongues as if of fire became visible to them and were distributed, and one came to rest on each one of them, 4 and they all became filled with holy spirit and started to speak in different languages, just as the spirit enabled them to speak.5 At that time devout Jews from every nation under heaven were staying in Jerusalem. 6 So when this sound occurred, a crowd gathered and was bewildered, because each one heard them speaking in his own language. 7 Indeed, they were utterly amazed and said: “See here, all these who are speaking are Gal·i·leʹans, are they not? 8 How is it, then, that each one of us is hearing his own native language? 9 Parʹthi·ans, Medes,Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. and Eʹlam·ites, the inhabitants of Mes·o·po·taʹmi·a, Ju·deʹa and Cap·pa·doʹci·a, Ponʹtus and the province of Asia, 10 Phrygʹi·a and Pam·phylʹi·a, Egypt and the regions of Libʹy·a near Cy·reʹne, sojourners from Rome, both Jews and proselytes,Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. 11 Creʹtans, and Arabians—we hear them speaking in our languages about the magnificent things of God.
We are again in 'the last days', so why would you be surprised if God should pour out some of HIS SPIRIT on a true Anointed group of humans.
Where is your faith ? Do you no longer believe in God's power ? Do you no longer believe that God can do 'miracles' ?
Your GB have admitted to NOT BEING INSPIRED OF HOLY SPIRIT.
Yet here we have in scripture, God's promise that HE WILL POUR OUT SOME OF HIS SPIRIT in the 'last days'.
Are we in those LAST DAYS or not ? Do you expect God to act or not ? Or are you just physical men ?
Have you lost your 'spiritual eyes' ? Did you in fact even have 'spiritual eyes' ? Are you relying on men and not on God through Christ ?
What should we believe and what should we question ? What should we just accept and what should we research ?
How deep should we dig in order to find truth ?
How do we really know what TRUTH is ?
Yes I'm asking serious questions and trying to dig very deeply
THE BIBLE CANON.
Now here is a lovely place to start digging. And here is a lovely place to ask ourselves, Should we just accept the Bible Canon as it is ?
“Canon” is a Greek word meaning “rule” or “measuring stick.” So the Bible canon is the 'accepted' 66 writings that the Bible holds.
Should we accept this canon or question it ? Do you know that many 'Bible scholars' did not and do not agree on the Bible canon ?
140 C. E. Marcion rejected the Old Testament, along with any writings that might reinforce views other than his own. He developed a list of books he considered acceptable: portions of the Gospel of Luke, ten of Paul’s letters, plus a letter purportedly from Paul to the Alexandrians. This list is known as the Marcion Canon. After Marcion and Montanus, lists of New Testament books begin to appear. One of the first was The Muratorian Fragment. It was discovered among the Vatican’s sacred documents by historian Ludovico Antonio Muratori in 1740 and dates to about A.D. 190. The fragment is damaged. The portion we possess begins with “the third book of the Gospel is that according to Luke.” We assume the first and second Gospels to be Matthew and Mark. The fragment lists John, Acts, all of Paul’s letters, James, 1-2 John, Jude and the Revelation of John. It also includes the Revelation of Peter, the Wisdom of Solomon and (“to be used in private, but not public worship”) the Shepherd of Hermas. In 367, Athanasius, the bishop of Alexandria, wrote an Easter letter that contained all twenty-seven books of our present New Testament. In 393 the Synod of Hippo affirmed our current New Testament, and in 397 the Council of Carthage published the same list. But :- In the first and second centuries after Christ, many, many writings and epistles were circulating among the Christians. Some of the churches were using books and letters in their services that were definitely spurious. Gradually the need to have a definite list of the inspired Scriptures became apparent. Heretical movements were rising, each one choosing its own selected Scriptures, including such documents as the Gospel of Thomas, the Shepherd of Hermas, the Apocalypse of Peter, and the Epistle of Barnabas. The Council of Carthage established the orthodox New Testament canon in 397 AD; it was upheld at the Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. in 1545. By the way, Protestants and Catholics are in agreement with their use of the same New Testament. However, were any of those men true servants of God through Christ ? Were they guided by God / Holy Spirit ? The scriptures talk about men entering into the 'congregation' / organisation that would mislead many and not act is a truthful way. A small point but of interest, is in Paul's Letter to the Colossians Ch 4 v 16 "And when this letter has been read among you, arrange for it also to be read in the congregation of the La·o·di·ceʹans and for you also to read the one from La·o·di·ceʹa. " Here we read that Paul mentions his letter to the congregation of Laodicea, and a little bit of research will find this letter. To the Laodiceans 1 Paul, an apostle not from men nor through man, but through Jesus Christ, to the brethren who are of Laodicea. 2 Grace to you and peace from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. 20 And cause [this letter] to be read to the Colossians and that of the Colossians to you. There is not much in the letter to Laodicea but, if the translation I've found is correct then it is one of Paul's letters. And it was important enough to Paul to mention in both letters Colossians and Laodiceans to read both to both congregations. So, why is it not in the Bible canon ? At this point i must thank @JW Insider for his work and for his giving me much information concerning other writings of 'Scripture' and history of Bible times. Thank you. I was not aware, A, that so many other 'writings of scripture' had been written, B, that so many still exist and are available to read online. But this poses a question. If we believe that God, through Holy Spirit, has kept 'His written word' 'alive' and available for all to read, then who has kept all those other 'writings of scripture' available for all to read ? and why ? How much should we investigate and how much should we just accept ? The Bible Canon is just a starting point. We could follow up with, Do we accept the translation we have or should we try to compare it to the original Hebrew and Greek scriptures ? How close to the original Hebrew and Greek can we get ? What does God and Christ expect of us ? Do they expect us to dig deeper than just reading the translation of the Bible that we have ?
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.
You may of course comment as to what you feel would make for good spiritual progress within the JW Org too.
Point 1. I really do laugh at this term "Only game in town" As I've said before the JEWISH RELIGIOUS LEADERS would have said that serving God by obeying THEM and the Mosaic Law, was the only game in town. Jesus however proved those Religious leaders to be wrong. Jesus and his disciples carried over the good points of the Mosaic Law and discarded the bits no longer needed. (Such as animal sacrifices, circumcision etc).
Russell & Co came out of former religions. I presume they must have carried over some good points from those former religions, then made adjustments or changed doctrines.
So why would it not be possible for people that have left the JW Org to form a new religion ? Carrying over the good and disposing of the bad, of which there seems to be plenty....
I'm not saying it will happen but it does dispose of this idea of 'the only game in town' brainwashing. JW's seem to be taught that there cannot be anything else ever. What if Russell had believed that, the Bible Students would have never been formed.
Point 2. The 'Truth' / JW Org.
As I read more and more on here I am finding out that the Governing Body / Writing Dept' / Legal Dept' et al, have deliberately told many lies.
The latest I'm reading (on a new topic on here) but the info stems back a while, seems to contain information whereby the 'Org' / those in charge at the time, implied, that children cannot get baptised, and that blood transfusions were acceptable to the Organisation. It seems that this was written in order to get favours from a certain government.
Both of those things are lies but seem to be deliberately used for some form of dishonest gain.
Then of course we have lawyers telling lies in court about shunning.
And C.S.A court cases have proved that elders and others have deliberately lied. And the American 'section' of the JW Org deliberately withholding information regarding such matters.
Link this to misuse of scriptures, such as, Superior Authorities, which deliberately took away people's conscience / freedom of choice, in WW2.
And I'm sure people here can come up with lots more examples of lies, deliberate wrongdoing, mistakes, misinterpretations, 'new light' corrections et al.
Why am i writing all this ? Well I am proving two points.
1. If it's your 'only game in town' then it's not a good one.
2. That calling it 'The Truth' is totally deceptive.
I do not think you would like it if I gave you a meal that was three quarters yummy, but a quarter poison. The poison might well contaminate the good food !
So, saying that the Org / GB are three quarters right does not help.
They are digging their own grave. This is not spiritual warfare. This is a lie.
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.
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?
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.
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
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 ?
I enjoyed reading these paragraphs and scriptures which don't have to do if we are JWs or not, it has to do if we are christians or not as we sayBy Guest Nicole
What is one way that true Christians are different from members of false religions? We “speak the truth.” (Read Zechariah 8:16, 17.) Paul said: “We recommend ourselves as God’s ministers, . . . by truthful speech.” (2 Corinthians 6:4, 7) And Jesus said that people speak “out of the heart’s abundance.” (Luke 6:45) This means that an honest person will tell the truth. He will tell the truth to strangers, coworkers, friends, and loved ones. Let us discuss some examples of how we can show that we are trying to be honest in all things.
If you are a young person, you may want your peers to accept you. Yet because of this desire, some young people are living a double life. They pretend to be morally clean when they are with their family and the congregation but are completely different when they are on social media or with people who do not serve Jehovah. They may use bad language, wear immodest clothes, listen to music with unclean lyrics, get drunk, use drugs, date secretly, or do other bad things. They are lying to their parents, to their brothers and sisters, and to Jehovah. (Psalm 26:4, 5) But Jehovah knows when we claim to honor him and then do things he hates. (Mark 7:6) It is so much better to do what the proverb says: “Let your heart not envy sinners, but be in the fear of Jehovah all day long.”—Proverbs 23:17.
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By Bible Speaks
How did you learn the Truth?
I was raised in the Truth. ?
Did Jesus really say He was God?
That’s exactly how Jesus’ original audience seemed to take it when He said, “I and the Father are one.” In fact, the Jews were ready to kill Him right there! Why? “Because you,” they said, “a mere man, claim to be God” (John 10:33).
On another occasion, He used the personal name of Israel’s God–the name revealed to Moses (Exodus 3:14)–to refer to Himself. And He even used the Torah for context, so no one would misunderstand Him: “Before Abraham was, I AM” (John 8:58). This would be about wild as telling a Muslim, “I am your God, Allah.” Don’t try that in Saudi Arabia! It’s no wonder the Jews tried to stone Him to death. That was the exact penalty for blasphemy under the Jewish legal system. It was pretty clear to everyone there that He was saying, “I am Israel’s God.”
Why Jesus is God? The Apostle Thomas called Jesus God.John 20:27-29: 2. The Apostle Peter called Jesus God.2 Peter 1:1: 3.The Apostle John called Jesus God.John 1:1-3, 4.God the Father called Jesus God.Hebrews 1:8: 5. God the Father called Jesus God. 6.Isaiah the Prophet said the Messiah would be God.Isaiah 9:67. The Jews who crucified Jesus understood Him to be saying that He was equal with God.John 5:18: 8.Jesus called Himself "I AM", the Old Testament name for God (Exodus 3:14).John 8:58-59. 9.Jesus calls Himself "the Alpha and Omega," the title of Almighty God.Revelation 22:12-13. 10. Like God (Gen. 1:1) Jesus created.Colossians 1:16-1711. Like God, Jesus forgives sin.Mark 2:5-7, 10-11:12. Like God, Jesus gives eternal life.John 10:27-28: 13. Like God, Jesus received, receives and will receive worship.Matthew 14:32-33. 14. Jesus said that only God was good; and Jesus was good. John 10:11: "I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives His life for the sheep."John 10:11: "I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives His life for the sheep."Jesus was as good as they come. He was "sinless," "holy," "righteous," "innocent," "undefiled," and "separate from sinners." (Hebrews 7:26) That's pretty good! 15. Like God, Jesus can be present in more than one place at the same time.Matthew 18:20: 16. One of Jesus' titles is "God with us."Matthew 1:23. 17. Jesus' blood is called God's blood.Acts 20:28: 18. Jesus has the same nature as God.Hebrews 1:3a: 19. Jesus spoke as God.Jesus did not speak as one of God's prophets: "thus says the Lord," but as God: "I say to you."Matthew 5:27-29. 20. Like God (Psalm 136:3), Jesus is called the Lord of Lords and King of kings.Revelation 17:14. And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplications: and they shall look upon me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for him, as one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for him, as one that is in bitterness for his firstborn. ( WHEN WAS GOD PIERCED? ). And he shall pass through Judah; he shall overflow and go over, he shall reach even to the neck; and the stretching out of his wings shall fill the breadth of thy land, O Immanuel (means God Among Us).
John 1:1, "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God."
John 1:14, "And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth."
John 8:58 "Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am." Crossreference with Exodus 3:14 "And God said unto Moses, I AM THAT I AM: and he said, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I AM hath sent me unto you."
John 10:33 "The Jews answered him, saying, For a good work we stone thee not; but for blasphemy; and because that thou, being a man, makest thyself God."
John 20:28 "And Thomas answered and said unto him, My Lord and my God."
Collossians 2:9 "For in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily."
Hebrews 1:8 "But unto the Son he saith, Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever: "
Matthew 4:10 "Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve." Crossreference with Matthew 2:2, Matthew 2:11, Matthew 28:9.
Isaiah 44:6 "Thus saith the LORD the King of Israel, and his redeemer the LORD of hosts; I am the first, and I am the last; and beside me there is no God." Crossreference with Revelation 1:17 "And when I saw him, I fell at his feet as dead. And he laid his right hand upon me, saying unto me, Fear not; I am the first and the last: I am he." and Revelation 1:8 "I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty."
2Peter. Jehovah The Father appears.
John 1. Jehovah the son.
John 8:58 Jesus identifies Himself as Jehovah "I Am"
Acts 5. Jehovah the Holy Spirit identified.
BOTH the FATHER and the SON HAVE the SAME 119 ATTRIBUTES, CLAIMS and MAJESTY.
‘I am Jehovah - that is my name: and my glory will I not give to another.’ (Isaiah 62:8).
The glory of these 119 attributes are jointly owned by the Father and the Son, and nobody else.
Jesus Christ is Jehovah God, equally with the Father, because both the Father and Son alone
have the following attributes:
1. both are to be honoured equally (John 5:23)
2. both are the I AM (Exodus 3:14-15; John 8:24,58)
3. both are the Mighty God (Isaiah 10:20,21; Jer 32:18; Psalm 50:1; Isaiah 9:6; Gen 49:24)
4. both own the same throne (Psalm 45:6,7; Hebrews 1:8; Revelation 22:1,3)
5. both accept worship (Exodus 34:14; I Chronicles 16:29; Hebrews 1:6; Matthew 28:9)
6. both laid the foundation of the earth (Psalm 102:24-27; Isaiah 48:13; Hebrews 1:10-12)
7. One God has created mankind (Mal. 2:10; Prov. 16:4; Isaiah 44:24; Col 1:16; John 1:3)
8. both are the Shepherd (Psalm 80;1; Gen 49:24; John 10:11; Hebrews 13:20; I Peter 5:4)
9. both are from Everlasting (Psalm 90:2; Habakkuk 1:12; Micah 5:2; Hebrews 7:3).
10. both are the First and Last (Isaiah 44:6; Revelation 1:17,18; Rev. 2:8; See p.54).)
11. both are the Alpha and Omega (Revelation 1:8; 21:5-7; 22:13-16; See p.54)
12. both come and Reward (Isaiah 40:10; 62:11; Revelation 22:12)
13. both are unchangeable (Malachi 3:6: Hebrews 13:8)
14. both have unsearchable riches (Romans 11:33; Ephesians 3:8)
15. both are the Holy One (Isaiah 43:15; Acts 3:14)
16. both are omnipresent and fill all things (Psalm 139:7; Jer. 23:24; Eph. 4:10; John 3:13)
17. both are omniscient (Psalm 147:5; Prov. 14:3; John 21:17; John 16:30; Colossians 2:3)
18. both are omnipotent (Genesis 17:1; Matthew 28:18; Hebrews 1:3)
19. both are eternal (Deuteronomy 33:27; Hebrews 7:3; Micah 5:2)
20. both own the everlasting Kingdom (Psalm 145:13; Daniel 7:14; II Peter 1:11)
21. both are Lord of all (Psalm 103:19; Matthew 11:25; Acts 10:36)
22. both are the only Saviour (Isaiah 43:11; Titus 1:3,4; Philippians 3:20; II Peter 1:1; 3:18; Luke 2:11; Hebrews 5:9; Acts 4:12)
23. both are the Truth (Deuteronomy 32:4; John 14:6)
24. both are sinless (Deuteronomy 32:4; Hebrews 4:15)
25. both are in the beginning (Genesis 1:1; John 1:1)
26. both God and the Son are the Judge (Psalm 82:8; John 5:22), but the Father is not the Judge (John 5:22 ‘The Father judgeth no man’).
27. both are our Hope (Psalm 39:7; I Timothy 1:1)
28. both shelter believers under their wings (Psalm 91:2,4; Matthew 23:37)
29. both are our Redeemer (Psalm 130:7,8; Isaiah 44:6; Galatians 3:13; Titus 2:14)
30. the glory of both was seen by Isaiah (Isaiah 6:3,5; John 12:41)
31. both are the Rock (Deuteronomy 32:3,4,18; Psalm 18:31; I Corinthians 10:4)
32. both are to be looked to for salvation (Isaiah 45:22; John 1:29; John 6:40)
33. to both shall every knee bow and every tongue confess (Isaiah 45:23; Philippians 2:10; Romans 14:10,11)
34. the enemies of both shall perish (Psalm 92:9; Philippians 3:18,19)
35. both send the Holy Spirit (Joel 2:28; John 16:7)
36. to both shall all men come (Psalm 65:2; Isaiah 45:24; John 12:32)
37. both forgive sins (Exodus 34:7; Mark 2:5,7; Colossians 3:13)
38. both blot out sin (Isaiah 43:25; Hebrews 1:3; I John 1:7)
39. both still storms (Psalm 107:29; Matthew 8:26)
40. both own the Holy Spirit (Matthew 10:20; Romans 8:9)
41. both seek the lost (Ezekiel 34:16; Luke 19:10)
42. to both are applied 10 aspects of the Lord’s Prayer (Matthew 6:9-13; see page 954)
43. both receive believers to glory (Psalm 73:24; John 14:3)
44. both are our One Master (Malachi 1:6; Matthew 23:8,10)
45. both are served by believers (Deuteronomy 10:20; Colossians 3:24)
46. both lead believers to living waters (Psalm 23:2; Revelation 7:17)
47. both correct believers (Proverbs 3:12; Revelation 3:19)
48. both prepare a place for believers in heaven (Hebrews 11:16; John 14:2)
49. both are all in all (I Corinthians 15:28; Colossians 3:11)
50. both are known by believers (Galatians 4:9; Philippians 3:10; John 17:3)
51. both are cleaved to by believers (Deuteronomy 10:20; John 15:4)
52. both are the light of the world (Psalm 27:1; John 8:12)
53. both are the Light of the New Jerusalem (Isaiah 60:19,20; Revelation 21:23)
54. both give eternal life (Psalm 36:9; John 10:28)
55. both are called ‘My Lord and my God’ (Psalm 35:22,23; John 20:28)
56. both are our Righteousness (Isaiah 45:24; I Corinthians 1:30; Jeremiah 23:5,6)
57. both have the same voice as of many waters (Ezekiel 43:2; Revelation 1:15)
58. both are witnessed to by believers (Isaiah 43:10; Acts 1:8)
59. both own the peace given to believers (Philippians 4:7; John 14:27)
60. both own the gospel (I Thessalonians 2:2; Romans 1:16)
61. both give saving grace (Titus 2:11; Acts 15:11)
62. both are our peace (Judges 6:24; Ephesians 2:14)
63. both are pierced and looked upon (Zechariah 12:10; John 19:37)
64. both sanctify believers (Exodus 31:13; I Corinthians 6:11)
65. both give victory to believers (Psalm 98:1; I Corinthians 15:57)
66. both heal people (Exodus 15:26; Matthew 9:35)
67. both equally own the churches (I Corinthians 15:9; Romans 16:16; I and II Thess. 1:1)
68. both own the Kingdom (Matthew 6:33; Rev. 11:15).
69. both are glorified by the Gentiles (Isaiah 24:15; II Thessalonians 1:12; Matthew 12:21)
70. both own the Day of the Lord (Isaiah 13:6; Philippians 1:6; II Thessalonians 2:2)
71. both give grace to believers (Romans 5:15; Colossians 1:6; II Cor. 8:9; Galatians 6:18)
72. both own the same glory (Romans 5:2; II Corinthians 8:23)
73. both own the same love (John 5:42; II Corinthians 5:14)
74. both own the same Word (Psalm 119:11; I Thessalonians 2:13; Colossians 3:16)
75. both own salvation (Luke 3:6; Jonah 2:9; Acts 4:12; II Timothy 2:10)
76. both were served equally by Paul (Titus 1:1; Romans 1:1);and by James (James 1:1)
77. both own the commandments (I John 5:3; John 14:15)
78. both had their way prepared by John the Baptist (Isaiah 40;3; Mark 1:1-3)
79. both search all hearts (Psalm 139:1; Revelation 2:23)
80. both own the same flock (I Peter 5:2; John 21:15,16)
81. both ascend on high, lead captivity captive, and give gifts to men (Psalm 68:17,18; Ephesians 4:7-10)
82. both are like a Bridegroom (Isaiah 62:5; Mark 2:19,20)
83. both receive the glory of God alone forever and ever (Isaiah 42:8; Galatians 1:4,5; I Peter 5:10,11; II Peter 3:18; Hebrews 13:21; I Peter 4:11; Revelation 1:5,6)
84. both are the source of fruit (Hosea 14:8; John 15:5)
85. both are our source of strength (Psalm 119:28; Philippians 4:13)
86. both give rest for our souls (Jeremiah 6:16; Matthew 11:29)
87. both shall appear at Christ’s return (Psalm 102:16; Zechariah 14:3,4,5; Titus 2:13)
88. both will come to earth (Isaiah 40:10; Revelation 22:7,12,20)
89. both are to be trusted in (Jeremiah 17:7; Ephesians 1:12; John 14:1)
90. both are our King (Isaiah 6:5; 33:22; Revelation 17:14; 19:16; I Timothy 6:14,15)
91. both will wound their enemies’ heads (Psalm 68:21; 110:6)
92. both take vengeance (Romans 12:19; II Thessalonians 1:7,8)
93. both will be opposed by the Antichrist’s armies (Isaiah 34:22; Revelation 19:19)
94. both will fight against the Antichrist’s armies at Armageddon (Zechariah 14:3; Revelation 19:11,13,21)
95. both will destroy death (Isaiah 25:8; II Timothy 1:10).
96. both receive the faith of believers (I Thessalonians 1:8; Galatians 3:26)
97. both are our life (Deuteronomy 30:20; Colossians 3:4)
98. both are to be prayed to (Matthew 6:9; Acts 7:59)
99. both raised up Christ (Acts 2:32; John 2:19,21)
100.both own all of the other (John 16:15)
101.both enter the east gate of Jerusalem (Ezekiel 44:1,2; Luke 19:37-45)
102.the man on the throne in Ezekiel 1:26 is identified as the God of Israel in Ezek 10:20
103.both names are placed on the same level in the baptism formula (Matthew 28:19)
104.both fellowship equally with believers (I John 1:3).
105.both comfort believers (Isaiah 66:13; Philippians 2:1).
106.both receive doxologies of worship in heaven (Revelation 5:8-10; 5:11,12; 5:13,14).
107.both jointly send grace and peace to the churches (Romans 1:7).
108.both the love of the Father and love of the Son are an equal privilege given to us.(John 14:21)
109.both jointly declare themselves to be Jehovah, “I am the first,& I am the last”(Isaiah 44:6)
110.both come to his temple, ‘the Lord shall suddenly come to his temple.’(Malachi 3:1; Mat 21:13)
111.both are the King of Israel (Isaiah 44:6; John 1:49).
112. both can be blasphemed (God-Rom.2:24; HS-Luke 12:10; Christ-Luke 22:65; Acts 13:45; 18:5,6; 26:9,11)
113.both are always with all believers (Matthew 28:20; 2 Corinthians 13:14).
114.both are the one lawgiver (God-Rom.7:22; Christ-Gal.6:2; HS-Rom.8:2; James 4:12).
115.both have the same face (Revelation 22:3,4)
116.both have the same Name (Revelation 22:3,4)
117.both own the same servants (Revelation 22:3)
118.both are the Temple of the New Jerusalem (Revelation 21:22)
119.Heavens are the work of thy hands (Psalm 102:24-27; Hebrews 1:10-12)
Since both Jesus and the Father have these same attributes, both are Jehovah God.
There are not 2 Gods, but One God in 3 persons. One who has these attributes must be God.
The Lord’s Prayer is devoted to worshipping the Father. Jesus conceals His personal glory
in this prayer as seen by other Scriptures which are just as true of Christ as the Lord’s Prayer
is of the Father.
By JOHN BUTLER
"All Scripture is inspired of God and beneficial for teaching, for reproving, for setting things straight, for disciplining in righteousness,"
2 Timothy 3 v 16
Was this in it's way a small prophecy ?
The 2nd book of Timothy was written 65 C.E. However 1,2,3, John and Revelation were written much later.
So we have two points, 1. The writings were not complete when Paul wrote that information. 2, The Bible had not been constructed so no idea would have been formed as to what the Bible would contain.
Were there other writings ? Would they be considered as Scripture?
It seems that Paul was inspired to write that "All scripture is inspired.... "
The Trinity and Bible Proofs that Jesus Christ is God
1. Matthew 28:17-20 “they worshipped him”, “All power is given to me”, “I am with you always” and “baptizing them in the name (one God) of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost” = Trinity.
2. In Matthew 3:1-3, Jesus Christ fulfils Isaiah 40:3 to ‘Prepare the way of Jehovah’ and our God.
3. John 1:1 “the word was God” (KJV, NIV), not ‘a god’ (NWT). a) Isaiah 44:8 ‘Is there a God beside me?’ b) The absence of the article before “theos” (God) identifies “word” as the subject (Colwell’s rule)Ans855
‘The subject is identified by the article (ho logos) and the predicate (theos) without it.’ AT Robertson 5,4.
John did not use the word for “Godlike or a lesser god” (theios) to describe Jesus, but used “theos” (God).
All early writers disagree with JWs. (Irenaeus,Theophilus, Clement,Tertullian, Origen, Cyprian, Tatian).
All modern Greek experts disagree with JWs. (Zodhiates, AT Robertson, Wuest, Vine, Vincent, Mantey)
4. John 1:3 “All things were made by him” Malachi 2:10 “Hath not one God created us?” Jesus is Creator.
5. John 3:13 “Son of man which is in heaven.” Jesus is omnipresent (on earth and in heaven at same time)
6. John 4:42 “Christ, the Saviour of the world.” Isaiah 43:11 “Jehovah; beside me there is no saviour.”
7. John 5:18 “said God was his Father, making himself equal with God”. John believed it and quoted it.
8. John 5:23 “all men should honour the Son, even as they honour the Father” Do you honour the Son as God?
9. John 6:46 “Not that any man hath seen the Father.” Who did OT saints see who they said was God?Is6:5
10. John 8:24 “If ye believe not that I am, ye shall die in your sins.” Jehovah is “I am” in Exodus 3:1-14.
11. John 8:58,59 “Before Abraham was, I am. They took up stones to cast at him.” Jesus said He is God.
12. John 10:30 “I and my Father are One. They took up stones to stone him.” No stoning if agree with God.
13. John 10:33 “thou being a man, makest thyself God. They sought again to take him (39)”. Why?
14. John 16:15 “All things that the Father hath are mine:” All the Father’s attributes as God are Christ’s.
15. John 17:5 “the glory which I had with thee before the world was.” Isaiah 42:8 “I am Jehovah: my glory will I not give to another.” Jesus is Jehovah because he alone shares Jehovah’s exclusive glory.
16. John 20:28 “Thomas said unto him (Jesus), My Lord and my God.” No rebuke for blasphemy or error.
17. Acts 20:28 “Feed the church of God, which he (God) hath purchased with his own blood.” Jesus =God
18. I Cor. 1:2 “all that in every place call upon the name of Jesus Christ.” Prayer to Jesus makes him God.
19. I Corinthians 15:47 ‘the second man is the Lord from heaven’ This is Jesus. No man is from heaven.
20. II Corinthians 13:14 is the Apostolic Benediction:“The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Ghost, be with you all. Amen.” (II Corinthians 13:14).
Why is there a change in the order of the persons of the Trinity, compared to Matthew 28:19, if not to show that in this Trinity none is before or after the other, and none is better than another?
21. Philippians 2:6 “Who being in the form of God (in His pre-incarnate state Christ had the form of God) thought it not robbery to be equal with God.” (a prize to be held on to, not a prize to be won. AT Robertson).
22. Colossians 2:9 “In him (Christ) dwells all the fullness (exhausts the limits) of the Godhead bodily.”
23. I Thes 4:14 “them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him.” Jesus returns as God at rapture.
24. I Timothy 3:16 “God was manifest in the flesh.” Jesus is God the Son conceived in Mary.
25. Titus 2:13 “the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ.” Granville-Sharp rule: Jesus is God and Saviour.
26. Hebrews 1:6 “Let all the angels of God worship him.” Only worship God. Matt 4:10, Ps97:7 Son is God
27. Hebrews 1:8 “To the Son he saith, ‘Thy throne, O God, is forever and ever’” Psalm 45:6,7. Son is God.
28. Hebrew 1:10 “And (to the Son he saith), Thou, Lord, in the beginning hast laid the foundation of the earth; and the heavens are the works of thine hands:.thou art the same.” Son is unchangeable creator. Ps102:24
29. Hebrews 1:13 To which of the angels said he, Sit on my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool? 35
30. I John 5:7 “There are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one.”
The heavenly and earthly witnesses in v.7,8 are confirmed in v.9 by God and men.
The masculine article (oi) for “that” in v.7 is derived from the masculine nouns “Father and Word” in v.7.
31. Revelation 1:17,18 “I am the first and the last: I am he that liveth and was dead;” Jesus = first and last.
Revelation 1:11 “I am Alpha and Omega, the first and the last:” Jesus = first and last = Alpha and Omega.
Revelation 22:12,13 “I come quickly; I am Alpha and Omega, the first and the last.” Jesus=Alpha & Omega.
Revelation 1:8 “I am Alpha and Omega, the Almighty.” Jesus = first & last = Alpha & Omega =Almighty
32. Revelation 22:3 “the throne of God and of the Lamb.” Both God and the Lamb equally own the throne.
Revelation 22:3 “his servants shall serve him:” Both God and the Lamb equally own the same servants.
Revelation 22:4 “they shall see his face.” Both God and the Lamb have the same face.
Revelation 22:4 “his name shall be in their foreheads.” Both God and the Lamb have the same name.
Revelation 20:6 “they shall be priests (of God and of Christ), and shall reign with HIM a thousand years” Revelation 21:22 “for (the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb) are the temple of it.” Both are temple of NJ Revelation 21:23 “for (the glory of God did lighten it, and the Lamb is the light) thereof.” Both light of NJ
33. God identifies Himself as “us” (a Trinity) in:‘God said “let us make man in our image”’ Genesis 1:26 ‘Jehovah God said, “Behold the man is become as one of us . . .’ Genesis 3:22. ‘Jehovah came down … the Lord said, let us go down.’ Genesis 11:5,7 ‘who will go for us?’ Isaiah 6:8. 34. Exodus 3:14 “I AM hath sent me unto you.” ‘I AM’ is the name of the angel of Jehovah, Jehovah, God (2,4,6) & Jesus in John 8:58 “Before Abraham was, I AM” & John 8:24 “If ye believe not that I AM”
35. Psalm 110:1. God told David that David’s son would be David’s God. ‘The LORD (Jehovah) said unto my Lord (Adonai), Sit thou at my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool.’ Jesus applied this to Himself in Matthew 22:41-45 as a question: ‘If David then call him Lord, how is he his son?’ This shows that Jesus Christ would be both a man descended from David and David’s God.
36. Isaiah 6:1-8,5. “Mine eyes have seen the King, Jehovah of hosts” on the throne in heaven. God asked Isaiah “who will go for us?” (‘us’ = trinity). In John 12:37-41, John said, “These things said Esaias when he saw his (Jesus) glory, and spake of him (Jesus).” Jesus was the King, Jehovah of hosts that Isaiah saw.
37. Isaiah 9:6 ‘Unto us a child is born (human Jesus),unto us a son is given (God the Son): his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The Mighty God.” Jehovah is Mighty God in Isaiah 10:21;Jer32:18; Ps 50:1
38. Isaiah 44:6 ‘Thus saith Jehovah the King of Israel (Father) and his redeemer Jehovah of hosts (Son)”
39. Isaiah 48:12,13,16 “Hearken unto me…Mine hand also has laid the foundation of the earth, and my right hand has spanned the heavens:…Come ye near unto me,..the Lord GOD, and his Spirit has sent me.”
Me, mine, my and me is God the Son describing his two works of creation and of incarnation to save man.
40. Ezekiel 44:1,2 “This gate shall be shut…because Jehovah, the God of Israel has entered in by it.”
In Luke 19:45-47 Jesus, who is Jehovah, fulfilled this prophecy, entering the east gate on a colt in 33AD.
41. Hosea 4:1 and 5:15. Jehovah will return to ‘my place’ (heaven), till the Jews admit their offence of killing Jesus. “Hear the word of the LORD (Jehovah) (4:1),.I will go and return to my place (heaven), till they (Jews) acknowledge their offence (of killing Jesus), and seek my face: in their affliction (7 year tribulation) they (Jews) will seek me early.” Jehovah the Son came from heaven to be born of Mary as a man, he was rejected and crucified by the Jews. The resurrected Lord Jesus returned to heaven. Jesus will return when the Jews acknowledge their offence of killing Jesus. This occurs after the 7 year tribulation.
42. Zechariah 11:4,12,13. “Thus saith the LORD (Jehovah) my God; (v.4). If ye think good, give me my price; So they weighed for my price thirty pieces of silver (v.12)….I took the thirty pieces of silver, and cast them to the potter in the house of the LORD’ (Zechariah 11:4,12,13). (silver, temple floor, potter field) These three prophecies were fulfilled in Judas betraying Jesus Christ in Matthew 26:14-16 and 27:3-10.
43. Zechariah 12:9-10. When Jesus Christ returns to earth, He is identified as Jehovah God whom Israel pierced on the cross. “I (Jehovah) will seek to destroy all the nations that come against Jerusalem (v.9). They (Israel) shall look upon me (Jehovah) whom they have pierced.” Jesus fulfilled this in John 19:37.
44. Zechariah 14:3,4,5,9. When Jesus Christ returns to earth on the Mount of Olives, He is identified as Jehovah God (Zechariah 14:3,4). ‘Then shall the LORD (Jehovah) go forth and fight against those nations, And his feet shall stand in that day upon the mount of Olives (v.3-4)....the LORD (Jehovah) my God shall come, and all the saints with thee (v.5)….the LORD (Jehovah) shall be king over all the earth.’ When Jesus ascended to heaven from the Mount of Olives, two angels told those witnesses present that “this same Jesus shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven.” (Acts 1:10-12).
45. In Zechariah 2:8-11, Jehovah the Son states twice that Jehovah the Father has sent Him to Israel. This proves that there are at least two persons in the Godhead, both called Jehovah.
“For thus saith Jehovah of hosts (the Son).. (v.8) Ye shall know that Jehovah of hosts (the Father) hath sent me (v.9). ‘I (Jehovah the Son) will dwell in the midst of thee, and thou shalt know that Jehovah of hosts (Father) hath sent me unto thee.” (v.11).
Lesson: Jehovah (the Father) sends Jehovah (the Son). Two persons here are named Jehovah. This clearly proves that Jesus Christ in His pre-incarnate state is fully Jehovah God.
46. In Zechariah 3:2 “Jehovah said unto Satan, Jehovah rebuke thee, O Satan”.
One person in the Jehovah Godhead speaks about another person in the Jehovah Godhead. See Isaiah 48:16 Rules of Grammar dictate that: “Jehovah (the first person = person speaking) said unto Satan (the second person = person spoken to), Jehovah (the third person = person spoken about) rebuke thee.”
By Bible Speaks
“Send out your light and your truth. May these themselves lead me.” Psalm 43:3. JEHOVAH is very considerate in the way he makes his purposes known to his servants. Instead of revealing the truth all at once in one blinding flash of light, he enlightens us progressively. Our trek along life’s pathway might be compared to a walk that a hiker takes down a long trail. He starts out early in the morning and sees little. As the sun begins to rise slowly over the horizon, the hiker is able to distinguish a few features of his surroundings. The rest he sees in hazy outline. But as the sun continues its ascent, he can see farther and farther into the distance. So it is with the spiritual light that God provides. He allows us to discern a few things at a time. God’s Son, Jesus Christ, provided spiritual enlightenment in a similar manner. Let us learn how Jehovah enlightened his people in ancient times and how he does so today.
By Srecko Sostar
"clear, pure water of truth" ?? ...and famous question that can be hear from platform and in witnessing "Would you drink water from a glass with just one drop of poison in it?"
Water That Leads to Life
..."Jehovah’s Witnesses invite you to taste the pure waters of truth." .....
[Picture on page 9]
"You can find the ‘waters of truth’ at your local Kingdom Hall"
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By Jack Ryan
In paragraph 9 of this weeks Watchtower it was talking about how children’s comments at the meetings can prompt newly interested ones to recognise the ring of truth.
I donÂ’t recall ever hearing it referred to as the ring of truth before. Is this a new phrase theyÂ’re going to try and get everybody using along the lines of, the truth, the brotherhood, this wicked system of things, etc etc.
ONE OR THREE?
In his book TWO BABYLONS, Alexander Hislop traces the various mythologies back to a common heritage. Hislop pointed out the antiquity of the theological concept of the Trinity by giving examples of pagan trinities in Siberia, Japan, and India. He noted that the recognition of the Trinity was “universal in all the ancient nations of the world”. He went so far as to say that “the supreme divinity in almost all heathen nations was triune”.
Historian Arthur Wainwright can find no doctrine remotely resembling the doctrine of the Trinity taught in Judaism until the time of Philo in the first century AD. And we know that Philo, even though he was a Jewish priest, was heavily influenced by Greek pagan thought.
The idea of a “plural” God was far from the Hebrew mind.
The pagan idea of a triad is very old. Sumerians, according to Morris Jastrow, paid homage to a triad of El-lil, “god or lord of the storm”, Ea, “water deity” of Eridu on the Persian Gulf, and Anu, sun god of Ur-uk.
El-lil, was called “the father of Sumer” (“Shinar”), and “chief of gods”, “creator and sustainer of life”. The universe was apparently up among these three “pre-eminent” deities.
Later, Marduk, the “firstborn” of Ea, and the patron deity of Babylon, is made “god of the earth”,
and his symbol, oddly enough, is the dragon. He was called “Bel” or “Baal” (lord).
Ashur, the god of the Assyrian capital was a “sun god”, and his consort or wife was Ishtar, the “great mother” goddess of Nineveh, a city founded by Ninus or Nimrod.
Ishtar, known as Ashtoreth to the Phoenicians, and Astarte to the Greeks, was often portrayed riding on a lion. She was called the daughter of the moon, and identified in astrology as the Roman Venus (“goddess of love”). She was also known as Nana or Madonna (Lady). From whence comes the title and worship of Mary as the Madonna and queen of heaven.
Ishtar has a bloody history as a goddess. She was reputedly the murderer of her consort Tammuz (variously known as Baal, Adonis, the Egyptian Osiris, the Greek Bacchus, or simply Nimrod). Queen Semiramis later brought forth an illegitimate son, which she claimed was Nimrod resurrected. He was called El-Bar, or “God the Son”, and “the Branch of Cush”. Thus was formulated one of the ancient triadic patterns of “father, mother, son”
Franz Cumont tells us that triads were very common in the religion of the Chaldeans. The Babylonian triad became the Syrian triad of Hadad, Atargatis, and Simios. In Rome, this triad was Jupiter, Venus, and Mercury. Not only did the triadic pattern of deity spread throughout the world, but Cumont remarks on the continuing influence of the Babylonian priesthood after the fall of Babylon from political leadership.
The ancient Greeks impressed with the wisdom of the Babylonians. Franz Cumont said, “Philosophy claimed more and more to derive its inspiration from the fabulous wisdom of Chaldea (Babylon) and Egypt”.
According to Cumont, the “entire neo-platonic school is heavily indebted to the Chaldeans (Babylonians)”. It was the neo-platonic school of philosophy which influenced the Catholic fathers, Justin Martyr, Clement of Alexandria, and Origen.
Porphyry reveals that the neo-platonists had incorporated Babylonian and Persian demonology into their philosophical system.
The Greek philosopher Plato, greatly influenced the Catholic fathers. He was acquainted with Babylonian wisdom, and had traveled to Babylonia, Israel, and Egypt.
Philo Judaeus (20 BC-50 AD) of Alexandria was the man who attempted to fuse the strict monotheistic theology of the Hebrew religion with the transcendental theology and philosophy of the Greek platonists.
He, Philo, had a profound influence upon the Catholic fathers, and therefore upon the development of the Catholic Trinity.
For one looking into Philo’s work will see that his conception of the Logos, with some modifications, is very similar to later trinitarian teaching on the Catholic Logos.
Charles Semisch has stated, “The early (Catholic) Fathers only poured the contents of the scriptures into a Philonian vessel: they view the biblical passages through a Philonian medium”.
I thought that the quote by historian Will Durant is quite appropriate: “Christianity did not destroy paganism; it adopted it.
. . . From Egypt came the ideas of a divine trinity.” In the book Egyptian Religion, where Siegfried Morenz says: “The trinity was a major preoccupation of Egyptian theologians . . . Three gods are combined and treated as a single being, addressed in the singular. In this way the spiritual force of Egyptian religion shows a direct link with Christian theology.”
Morenz goes on to say “Alexandrian theology as the intermediary between the Egyptian religious heritage and Christianity.”
Edward Gibbon’s History of Christianity said : “If Paganism was conquered by Christianity, it is equally true that Christianity was corrupted by Paganism. The pure Deism of the first Christians . . . was changed, by the Church of Rome, into the incomprehensible dogma of the trinity. Many of the pagan tenets, invented by the Egyptians and idealized by Plato, were retained as being worthy of belief.”
Dictionary of Religious Knowledge says that the Trinity “is a corruption borrowed from the heathen religions, and ingrafted on the Christian faith.”
The book…. The Paganism in Our Christianity said this of the trinity doctrine: “The origin of the [Trinity] is entirely pagan.”
Watchtower Teaching: JW arguments against the Trinity are:
i) If Jesus is God, who ran the universe during the three days that Jesus was dead in the grave? Satan had a great chance to take control.
Answer: Jesus’ body died, not His soul or spirit. He along with the Father and the Holy Spirit still ran the universe.
ii) If Jesus is the immortal God, He could not have died.
Answer: The immortal God, by taking on a mortal body, had His mortal body die.
iii) Since God is not a God of confusion (I Corinthians 14:33), it is impossible that the Bible would talk of a God who could not be understood by human reason. JWs claim that the Trinity is incomprehensible and unreasonable. ‘We worship what we know’ (John 4:22).
Answer: Man’s lack of understanding has never stopped new discoveries. What percent of the total knowledge of the universe do you possess? (about zero percent).
Ask: Could there be something about God that you don’t comprehend?(eg: His Trinity?).
iv) The word ‘Trinity’ is not in the Bible.
Answer: Neither is ‘Bible’, ‘organisation’, Kingdom Hall’, chocolate, motor car, etc.
Say to the JW: ‘By this logic you would agree that Kingdom Halls don’t exist either?’
This is shallow reasoning designed to throw the Christian off guard. If it can be proved that the Bible teaches a certain truth, then naming that truth does not make it unbiblical. We should ask: ‘Is the particular teaching in the Bible?’
v) The Watchtower has misrepresented the Trinity doctrine in order to make its denial more plausible.
They erect a straw man that is easily knocked down.
They call the Trinity a ‘freakish looking, three headed God’ (Let God be True, p 102)
‘This doctrine of three Gods in one God . . .’ (Studies in Scripture, 1899, Vol 5, p 60,61)
Note: Trinitarians do not believe in ‘three Gods in one God’.
They believe in one God, with three co-equal persons in the one Godhead.
1. Refuting the Watchtower’s FALSE Quotes of Early Church Writers
The Watchtower is quite happy to tell lies by inventing statements allegedly made by six Ante-Nicene Church writers who lived before 325 AD. Page 7 of their publication ‘Should you believe in the Trinity?’ Shows the Watchtower’s claims that these ancient writers taught that Jesus Christ was not God. These quotes are FALSE and INVENTED by the Watchtower. They are easily refuted by the photocopied excerpts of the 10 volume set of genuine Ante-Nicene church fathers quotes that prove these early writers strong belief in and defence of the Trinity.
In the Watchtower’s false quotes we notice that:
1) None of these references are given a source, making them nearly impossible to check. It is almost certain that the Watchtower has invented these quotes.
2) Notice the lie of the central bold quote on page 7: ‘There is no evidence that any sacred writer even suspected the existence of a [Trinity] within the Godhead’.
We refute this Watchtower lie, and prove beyond doubt that both the Trinity and the full deity of Christ were well known and firmly believed as early as 110 AD as seen from the quotes by the Ante-Nicene (before 325 AD) church fathers which follow the Watchtower quote.
The following quotes are from the 10 Volume set of The Ante-Nicene Fathers, translations of The Writings of the Fathers down to A.D. 325, by editors Alexander Roberts and James Donaldson, American Reprint of the Edinburgh edition, revised and arranged by A C Coxe, published by W.B.Eerdmans, Grand Rapids, Michigan, reprinted in May 1987.
The Watchtower’s claim that Constantine and the Council of Nicea introduced the deity of Christ and Trinity doctrines in 325 AD is proven false by these pre-325 AD quotes to the contrary:
i) Justin Martyr (110-165 AD),Volume I, page 263: ‘His Son, being God’ Volume I, page 219 Justin Martyr says:: ‘Christ existed as God before the ages’ Volume I, page 264). Justin Martyr says that ‘Christ is Lord and God’.
ii) Irenaeus (120-202 AD) Volume I, page 328 not only shows the NWT to be wrong on John 1:1
but also calls Christ ‘God’
iii) Clement of Alexandria (153-217 AD) In Volume 2, p 468, written in 193 AD, Clement clearly quotes the Holy Trinity as Father, Son & Holy Spirit. page 173
iv) Tertullian (200-250 AD) Volume 3, page 598 page 598 Tertullian against Praxeas, Volume 3, p.606 Tertullian correctly quotes John 1:1, saying that Christ is God. (Volume 3, p. 607) Tertullian again quotes the
Trinity on a fourth occasion. (Vol 4, page 99)
v) Hippolytus (170-236 AD) Volume 5, page 228 mentions the Trinity and quotes John 1:1 correctly.
vi) Origen (185-254 AD) Volume 4, page 255. Twice he quotes the word ‘Trinity’, as Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Also on page 258 he quotes the Trinity in ‘Origen de Principiis’, written in 230 AD.
vii) Thaumaturgus (205-265 AD) Volume 6, pages 42, 45
2. Is the Trinity a Pagan Concept? No! Because:
i) The Babylonians and Assyrians believed in triads of gods, which were three separate gods (polytheism) governing other gods. This is totally different from the Trinity of only one God (monotheism) with three persons within the one Godhead.
ii) Triads of gods pre-date Christianity by about 700 years and were far removed from Israel..
iii) Some pagan ideas have some truth in them, such as the pagan Flood legends. Just because pagans spoke of a concept that remotely resembles a biblical concept, does not mean that Christians stole it from the pagans.
iv) JWs quote Hislop’s The Two Babylons to support their case, yet they don’t tell us that Hislop believes in the Trinity, as seen from Hislop’s quote:
‘They all admitted a Trinity, but did they worship the Triune Jehovah?’ (p. 90)
- About 80% of the sources that the WT quotes are from Trinitarians. This begs the question: ‘How can the WT disprove the Trinity by quoting sources who believe the Trinity?
- 15% of their sources are secular works like Encyclopaedia Britannica.
- 5% of WT sources are invalid sources of Biblical truth, eg: sceptics, spiritists, Unitarians.
- The WT always finds some unknown, obscure person to agree with them. They do not examine the credibility of such sources. Most WT sources have no credibility & no authority.
- The WT rarely gives page numbers of its quotes to allow check the source and context.
v) JWs claim they represent the ‘faith once delivered to the saints’. They claim that the Trinity idea was introduced in 325 AD. What they don’t say is that current WT teachings have no precedent in history. They do not say who were the JWs of the first three centuries or later. No early church ‘father’ represented their beliefs. The WT is historically bankrupt.
vi) The WT, by showing a three-headed god, use the ‘straw-man effect’, where they misrepresent what Christians believe, and then proceed to ‘shoot down’ this ‘straw man’.
This is seen in five pictures of three-headed gods which are supposed to represent the God of Christendom. (‘Should you believe in the Trinity’ p 10).
vii) The WT is happy to misquote sources to prove their point.
Consider page 6 ‘Should you believe in the Trinity’, where they misquote the New Encyclopaedia Brittanica by failing to give the full relevant quote. They stop the quote at the asterisk *
‘The Encyclopaedia Britannica (1976 Edition) correctly states:
“Neither the word Trinity, nor the explicit doctrine as such, appears in the New Testament”,’
[*They stop the quote here, ignoring the rest of the article which endorses the Trinity:]
‘nor did Jesus and his followers intend to contradict the Shema in the Old Testament: ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God is one Lord’ (Deuteronomy 6:4). The earliest Christians, however, had to cope with the implications of the coming of Jesus Christ and of the presence and power of God among them - ie, the Holy Spirit, whose coming we connected with the celebration of Pentecost.
The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit were associated in such New Testament passages as the Great Commission: ‘Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit’ (Matthew 28:19); and in the apostolic benediction:
‘The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ and the love of God and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all’ (2 Cor. 13:14). Thus, the New Testament established the basis for the doctrine of the Trinity.The doctrine developed gradually over several centuries and through many controversies.
Any early church council disputes were over fine points of Trinity clarification, such as the substance, nature and omnipotence of Father, Son and Holy Spirit, never over whether the Trinity was right or wrong. The truth of the Trinity was always accepted.
3. Refuting Watchtowers’ wrong application of I Corinthians 14:33
‘for God is not the author of confusion, but of peace . . .’
Watchtower Teaching: JWs say that because God is not the author of confusion, the Trinity doctrine cannot be true because it is so unreasonable. How can the Father, Son and Holy Spirit each be God, and yet there be only one God? It doesn’t make sense to them.
Bible Teaching: Just because one is unable to fully understand something, doesn’t mean that it is false.
i) Finite humans cannot possibly understand everything about the infinite God.
‘How unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out.’ (Romans 11:33)
‘For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the Lord.
As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts’. (Isaiah 55:8,9)
ii) Can you fully understand how light can be both a particle of matter and a wave form?
iii) Can you fully understand how God did not have a beginning? (No) Do you reject the idea?
Ask: Should we reject the Trinity doctrine because we don’t fully understand it, when we accept other things about God and the universe which we don’t fully understand.
I Corinthians 14:33 means that a church should avoid disharmony in its services by only
having two or three prophets speak in a service, and only one at a time.
‘Confusion’ means ‘parts of a whole which are at strife with one another’.
‘Peace’ means ‘parts of a whole acting in harmony’.
5. Refuting WT’s misunderstanding of Deuteronomy 6:4 and Mark 12:29
‘Hear,O Israel, the Lord (YHWH) our God (Elohim) is one Lord (YHWH).’ (Deut 6:4)
Watchtower teaching: JWs say that, since God is one, He cannot be Triune at the same time. Why would God speak as one person if He were composed of three persons?
Bible teaching: The ordinary name of God (Elohim) is in the plural form ‘Hear, O, Israel, Jehovah our Elohim, one Jehovah.’ Deut.6:4
If God had intended to assert a solitary, exclusive type of unity, the expression would have been ‘Eloah’, not the plural ‘Elohim’.
It does not say: ‘Hear, O Israel, Jehovah, our Elohim, one Eloah.’
The use of Elohim (a uniplural noun) means: ‘there is a real plurality, yet Jehovah is one.’
Ask: Who is Jehovah? Is it the Father alone? Is Jesus Jehovah? Is the Holy Spirit Jehovah?
If we can find verses teaching that Jesus is Jehovah (or God) and the Holy Spirit is Jehovah,
then we have proved the Trinity.
i) The Holy Spirit is called Jehovah:‘Now Jehovah is the Spirit’.(II Corinthians 3:17 NWT)
ii) Jesus Christ is called God, as follows:
(1) ‘Our Lord Jesus Christ who is the blessed and only Potentate, the King of kings, and Lord of lords; who only hath immortality, dwelling in the light which no man can approach unto’(I Tim 6:14-16)
(2) ‘The Word was God.’ (John 1:1)
(3) ‘of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ’ (Titus 2:13)
(4) ‘the righteousness of God and our Saviour Jesus Christ’. (II Peter 1:1)
(5) ‘if ye believe not that I am, ye shall die in your sins.’ (John 8:24)
(6) ‘Before Abraham was, I am.’ (John 8:58)
(7) ‘God was manifest in the flesh’. (I Timothy 3:16)
(8) ‘Thomas said unto him, My Lord and My God’. (John 20:28)
(9) ‘in him dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily.’ (Colossians 2:9)
(10) ‘unto the Son he saith, Thy throne, O God is forever.’ (Hebrews 1:8)
(11) ‘If you publicly declare . . . that Jesus is Lord.’ (KIT: ‘ha Adon’ in Hebrew footnote of Romans 10:9. In the 1961 edition of NWT, p.1453, ‘ha Adon’ = Jehovah).
(12) ‘that he (Christ) might be Lord both of the dead and the living’. (Romans 14:9).
In verses 6-11 of NWT ‘??????’(Lord) is translated 7 times as Jehovah, except in v.9. Why?
(13) ‘in his Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God, and eternal life.’ (I John 5:20)
(14) ‘feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.’ (Acts 20:28)
6. Notice how God reveals Himself in stages to man:
(1) God revealed His Unity as the one and only true God, to refute the nations’ many gods.
(2) God revealed the Trinity (Jehovah=Father+Son+HS) in the Old Testament in:
‘Jehovah your God is God of gods (the Father), and Lord of lords (the Son)’. (Deut.10:17).
‘Thus saith Jehovah the King of Israel (the Father),and his redeemer Jehovah of hosts (the Son).Is44:6
‘God said “let us make man in our image . . .”.’ Genesis 1:26
‘Jehovah God said, “Behold the man is become as one of us . . .’ Genesis 3:22
‘Jehovah came down . . . the Lord said, let us go down . . .’ Genesis 11:5,7
‘the Lord saying . . . who will go for us?’ Isaiah 6:8
‘What is his name....and what is his Son’s name.’ Proverbs 30:4
‘the Lord God (the Father), and his Spirit (HS), hath sent me (Jehovah the Son).’ Isaiah 48:16.
(3) God revealed the fullness of the Trinity doctrine in the New Testament:
Matthew 28:19 ‘baptizing them in the name (singular name, not plural) of the Father, and of
the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.’
I John 5:7 ‘There are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one.’
Revelation 22:1,3,4 ‘the throne (of God and of the Lamb) shall be in it; and his servants shall serve him; they shall see his face, and his name shall be in their foreheads.’
Key:God and the Lamb have one throne, one name, one face and one ownership of servants.
II Corinthians 13:14 ‘The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Ghost’. There is one God, but three persons within the Godhead.
(4) Early Christians with a strong Jewish background, who knew Deuteronomy 6:4, continually refer to Jesus as ‘Lord’ and ‘God’ (Romans 10:13, I Thess 5:2, I Peter 2:3, 3:15.) They often apply to Jesus many Old Testament texts which refer to Jehovah, such as:
a) Jesus Christ in Matthew 3:1-3 fulfils Isaiah 40:3 to‘Prepare the way of Jehovah’ and Elohim.
b) Jesus Christ’s glory in John 12:41 is Jehovah’s glory in Isaiah 6:1-5.
c) Jesus Christ’s voice as the sound of many waters in Revelation 1:15 is identical to Jehovah’s voice as the sound of many waters in Ezekiel 43:2.
d) Jesus Christ being pierced in Rev 1:7 is the same one as Jehovah being pierced in Zech
e) Jesus Christ being called on for salvation in Romans 10:13, is the same as Jehovah being called on for salvation in Joel 2:32
f) Jesus Christ, the Lamb, is the everlasting light in Revelation 21:23, just as Jehovah ‘shall be . . . an everlasting light’ in Isaiah 60:19,20.
Ask:Do you agree that Trinitarians believe Deuteronomy 6:4 that there is only one true God?
Ask: Do you understand that Trinitarians don’t teach that there are three gods in the Trinity, but that there is only one God with three persons within the one Godhead?
Ask: How do you explain that the early Jewish Christians who believed Deuteronomy 6:4, applied to Jesus many Old Testament texts that were originally written of Jehovah?
BIBLE PROOFS OF THE TRINITY
Key: The Father, Son and Holy Spirit are so clearly and consistently linked in Scripture that, assuming that God is not three persons, makes it impossible to understand some passages.
Though JWs exalt human reasoning against the Trinity doctrine, saying it is unreasonable,those who submit to God’s Word must conclude that it is unreasonable to doubt the Trinity.
Consider these scriptures proving the Trinity:
1. Matthew 28:19 The ‘Name’ of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.
Watchtower teaching: JWs ask, ‘Does this verse prove the Father, Son and Holy Spirit are equal in substance, power and eternity?’ They say, ‘No, no more than listing three people
Tom, Dick and Harry mean that they are three in one.’ They say that the Trinity doctrine is imposed on the text, not derived from it.
Bible Teaching: The key point is that the word ‘name’ is singular in the Greek NT, thus proving that there is one God, but three distinct persons within the Godhead.
This proves the Trinity because Jesus did not say:
i) ‘into the names (plural) of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.’
ii) ‘into the name of the Father, and into the name of the Son, and into the name of the Holy Spirit’, as if we had three separate beings.
iii) ‘into the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit’ omitting the three articles (the), as if the Father, Son and Holy Spirit might be three designations of a single person.
What He does say is: ‘into the name (singular) of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit’.
Jesus first teaches the unity of the three by combining them all within a single name.
He then teaches that each is a different person by introducing each of them in turn with the
Question: Can you see that rules of grammar dictate plurality (the, the, the) within unity (the name), because the word ‘name’ is singular and definite articles (Greek: tou) are placed in front of Father, Son and Holy Spirit?
Other verses showing ‘three-in-oneness’ of the Godhead are:
i) At the creation of man, ‘God said, let us make man in our image, after our likeness . .’ (Genesis 1:26). ‘Our image’ in v. 26 is explained as God’s image in v. 27.
The one true God consists of three persons who are able to confer with one another and carry out their plans together, while still being one God.
ii) After the Fall, ‘the Lord (Jehovah) God (Elohim) said, Behold, the man is become as one of us . ’ (Genesis 3:22)
‘Us’ refers back to LORD (Jehovah), showing plurality within the Jehovah Godhead.
iii) At the Tower of Babel, ‘the LORD (Jehovah), said . . let us go down’ (Genesis 11:6,7).
iv) Isaiah ‘saw the Lord (Adonai) sitting upon a throne (v.1) mine eyes have seen the King, the LORD (Jehovah) of hosts (v.5). I heard the voice of the Lord (Adonai) saying: ‘Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?’’ (Isaiah 6:1,5,8) Here Isaiah sees ‘Adonai’ on the throne, then Isaiah calls Him ‘Jehovah of hosts’ (v.5).
Then Adonai asks,‘Who will go for us?’The ‘us’ shows plurality in the Jehovah Godhead. This equivalence of Adonai and Jehovah (both called ‘us’) proves the Trinity Godhead.
2. Genesis 18 and 19. Three men each called Jehovah.
JWs believe that it is impossible for Jehovah God to exist as three persons: Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Yet Genesis 18 and 19 shows Jehovah appearing to Abraham as three men. This
shows that even the impossible from a human viewpoint is possible with God. Notice that:
i) Abraham addresses the three as ‘Jehovah’ (v.3 NWT);
ii) When two of the three men depart to visit Lot in Sodom, Abraham continues to address the remaining one as ‘Jehovah’ (Genesis 18:22,26,27,30,31,32,33).
iii) Lot addressed the other two as ‘Jehovah’ (Genesis 19:1,18 NWT). ‘Then Lot said to them: “Not that please, Jehovah”.’ (19:18 NWT)
iv) ‘Then Jehovah made it rain sulphur and fire from Jehovah, from the heavens upon Sodom and Gomorra.’ (Genesis 19:24)
Notice the mention here of two Jehovahs, one in heaven who sends judgment on Sodom and Gomorra, at the bidding of the other Jehovah on earth.
This gives strong evidence for more than one person in the Godhead. The Jehovah upon earth was one of three persons to visit Abraham, one of whom stays behind to speak further to Abraham and is called Jehovah. (Genesis 21:1 ‘Jehovah turned his attention to Sarah’).
Hence this shows that it is possible for Jehovah to manifest Himself as three-in-one.
3. II Corinthians 3:17 - ‘Jehovah is the Spirit’ (NWT).
JWs challenge Christians to prove the Trinity in the Bible. This can be done if we find verses teaching that the Holy Spirit is Jehovah God, and the Son is Jehovah God.
II Corinthians 3:17 teaches this by saying: ‘Now Jehovah is the Spirit.’
How much clearer can it be than this, which states that the Holy Spirit is (=) Jehovah God? This proves the Deity of the Holy Spirit, and the existence of 2 persons in the Godhead.
4. I John 5:7,8 The Johannine Comma, the famous Trinitarian proof text (3 Heavenly witnesses)
Watchtower teaching: JWs claim that this passage ought not to be in the Bible, because it is not in most Greek manuscripts. It is omitted by most modern Bible versions. ’
Bible Teaching: Erasmus omitted it from his first edition of the printed Greek NT (1516), because it occurred in the Latin Vulgate and not in any Greek manuscript. To quieten the
outcry that followed, he agreed to restore it if it could be found in one Greek manuscript.
Two Greek manuscripts, Codex 61 and 629 were found, so Erasmus included it in his 1522 edition. Since these manuscripts are late (14th and 15th Century), some think the readings are
corrupt. What do we answer? (See page 805-806).
5. In II Corinthians 13:14, (the Apostolic Benediction) why is there a change in the order of the persons of the Trinity, compared to Matthew 28:19, if not to show that ‘in this Trinity
none is before or after the other, and none is greater or less than another’?
‘The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Ghost, be with you all. Amen.’ (II Corinthians 13:14)
‘Baptising them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.’ Matt. 28:19
By Queen Esther
THE TRUTHÂ ABOUTÂ CHRISTMAS......
The year was 1928, when Jehovah's people came to understand the God-dishonoring roots of Christmas. Since then, the pagan roots of Christmas customs have become general public knowledge..... but few people have made changes in their way of life as a result. But, Jehovah's Witnesses are always willing to make the needed changes in order to become more acceptable as servants of Jehovah God.
When shown that celebrating the birth of Jesus had actually become of greater interest to people than the ransom provided by his death; that the revelry of the holiday and the spirit in which many gifts were given did not honor God;Â that the magi whose gift-giving was being imitated were actually demon-inspired astrologers;Â that parents set an example for their children in lying by what they told them about Santa Claus;Â thatÂ "St. Nicholas"
(Santa Claus) was admittedly another name for Satan the Devil himself;Â and that such festivals were, as acknowledgedÂ by Cardinal Newman in his "Essay on the development of Christian Doctrine" were "the very instruments and appendages of demon-worship"Â the church had adopted....Â When made aware of these things, Jehovah's Witnesses promptly and permanently ceased having any part inÂ ChristmasÂ celebrations.
Jehovah's Witnesses do have good times with their family and friends. But, they do not participate in holidays and celebrations that are linked with pagan gods (as is true of such holidays as Easter, New Year's Day,Â May Day and Mother's day).Â Read, 2.Cor. 6:14-17.Â Like the early Christians,Â Jehovah's Witnesses do not even celebrate birthdays. They also respectfully refrain from sharing in national holidays, that memorialize political or military events and also refrain from giving worshipful honor to national heroes.
BECAUSEÂ JEHOVAH'SÂ WITNESSESÂ AREÂ NOÂ PARTÂ OFÂ THEÂ WORLD !
Reference, Proclaims Book,Â pagesÂ 198-200....
( byÂ BrotherÂ Roger B. Elder )Â Â Â ThankÂ youÂ BrotherÂ Elder !
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