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JW Core Beliefs .... As Applied

I carefully read Anna's list of JW core beliefs, and responded "Amen", although about some I have been thinking about all the extenuating circumstances that might affect the absoluteness of some of them.

For Example, in U.S. Law there are many things that are felonies, but State Supreme Courts have ruled that although these felonies are lawfully prosecuted, the individual specifics make them AS APPLIED to certain cases make the application of those laws un-Constitutional, either by State, or Federal Constitutions.

In other words, the specific circumstances of the crime determines whether or not those laws can be applied against a specific person, in a specific set of circumstances.

...... Lets suppose a family of five, where all the family members are Jehovah's Witnesses, and the mother has tired of taking care of her three young children, puts them in a car, and deliberately drives that car into a lake, and drowns them. 

It's first-degree premeditated murder.

She is convicted in a court of law, and is sentenced to three life sentences with no possibility of parole.

QUESTION # 1 :     Is the husband, whose three children were murdered by his wife, expected to live his life alone, and never re-marry?

QUESTION #2:      If he does, say after a dozen years, remarry, will he be disfellowshipped?

 

 

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You wouldn’t know a waste of time if one bit you in the rear end. Now here’s a waste of time: ”Good morning, brothers. Our first talk today is on the subject of dress and grooming.”

Okay…I’ll shut up now …😉

To the similar-person who declines to speak with me, saying “No, thanks—I’m CHRISTIAN!” I reply,  “Actually, only a Christian would do what I am doing. Frankly, I’m a little surprised that you ar

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 Now we know that the Law is fine if one applies it properly,*  recognizing that law is made, not for a righteous man, but for those who are lawless+ and rebellious, ungodly and sinners, disloyal* and profane, murderers of fathers and murderers of mothers, manslayers, 10  sexually immoral people,* men who practice homosexuality,* kidnappers, liars, perjurers,* and everything else that is in opposition to the wholesome* teaching+ 11  according to the glorious good news of the happy God, with which I was entrusted. - 1 Timothy 1:8-10

Adding from the secular realm, Goedel's Incompleteness Theorem which says essentially that w/in any given system of axioms there are statements which may be true which one is unable to demonstrate to be true w/o reference to additional axioms outside this system I'd say the legal take on any given specific circumstance can never provide a complete answer w/o reference to other axioms outside the accepted set.

This is not to negate the general principles regarding the sanctity of marriage, nor did Moses who gave an allowance of divorcing on account of "the hardness of the heart" violate said sanctity, but w/in the imperfect realm of humans one could argue on legal grounds that the wilful murder of ones own children would be of sufficient moral reprehensibleness to allow a scriptural divorce on the part of the innocent mate.

I could easily rabbinicize any number of scriptures which would allow for a divorce by following the general principles on which these are based.

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13 hours ago, Pudgy said:

QUESTION # 1 :     Is the husband, whose three children were murdered by his wife, expected to live his life alone, and never re-marry?

QUESTION #2:      If he does, say after a dozen years, remarry, will he be disfellowshipped?

 

Your question reminds me of the pharisees. They came to him and asked him if a women had had 7 husbands which one will she belong to in the resurrection. 

 

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Berean Literal Bible   Acts 15 : 28 & 29 
"For it seemed good to the Holy Spirit and to us, to lay upon you no further burden, except these necessary things: to abstain from things sacrificed to idols, and from blood, and from what is strangled, and from sexual immorality. Keeping yourselves from these, you will do well. Farewell."

The rest is up to a person's own conscience, because as you've mentioned the law of the land is different in different countries, and then the law itself is different in different cases.  

But not according to the GB / Watchtower dictators, who love to have control over people. 

(I haven't seen @Anna's list of Core beliefs, shame, but probably because she has blocked me) 

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6 hours ago, Arauna said:
20 hours ago, Pudgy said:

QUESTION # 1 :     Is the husband, whose three children were murdered by his wife, expected to live his life alone, and never re-marry?

QUESTION #2:      If he does, say after a dozen years, remarry, will he be disfellowshipped?

 

Your question reminds me of the pharisees. They came to him and asked him if a women had had 7 husbands which one will she belong to in the resurrection. 

The difference is that my two questions have very real application, and very real consequences right NOW!

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6 hours ago, Patiently waiting for Truth said:

(I haven't seen @Anna's list of Core beliefs, shame, but probably because she has blocked me) 

I haven't blocked you. I posted the core beliefs HERE

But I will list them here too, since this a relevant topic here.

God. We worship the one true and Almighty God, the Creator, whose name is Jehovah. (Psalm 83:18; Revelation 4:11) He is the God of Abraham, Moses, and Jesus.—Exodus 3:6; 32:11; John 20:17.

Bible. We recognize the Bible as God’s inspired message to humans. (John 17:17; 2 Timothy 3:16) We base our beliefs on all 66 of its books, which include both the “Old Testament” and the “New Testament.” Professor Jason D. BeDuhn aptly described it when he wrote that Jehovah’s Witnesses built “their system of belief and practice from the raw material of the Bible without predetermining what was to be found there.” *
While we accept the entire Bible, we are not fundamentalists. We recognize that parts of the Bible are written in figurative or symbolic language and are not to be understood literally.—Revelation 1:1.

Jesus. We follow the teachings and example of Jesus Christ and honor him as our Savior and as the Son of God. (Matthew 20:28; Acts 5:31) Thus, we are Christians. (Acts 11:26) However, we have learned from the Bible that Jesus is not Almighty God and that there is no Scriptural basis for the Trinity doctrine.—John 14:28.

The Kingdom of God. This is a real government in heaven, not a condition in the hearts of Christians. It will replace human governments and accomplish God’s purpose for the earth. (Daniel 2:44; Matthew 6:9, 10) It will take these actions soon, for Bible prophecy indicates that we are living in “the last days.”—2 Timothy 3:1-5; Matthew 24:3-14.
Jesus is the King of God’s Kingdom in heaven. He began ruling in 1914.—Revelation 11:15.

Salvation. Deliverance from sin and death is possible through the ransom sacrifice of Jesus. (Matthew 20:28; Acts 4:12) To benefit from that sacrifice, people must not only exercise faith in Jesus but also change their course of life and get baptized. (Matthew 28:19, 20; John 3:16; Acts 3:19, 20) A person’s works prove that his faith is alive. (James 2:24, 26) However, salvation cannot be earned—it comes through “the undeserved kindness of God.”—Galatians 2:16, 21.

Heaven. Jehovah God, Jesus Christ, and the faithful angels reside in the spirit realm* (Psalm 103:19-21; Acts 7:55) A relatively small number of people—144,000—will be resurrected to life in heaven to rule with Jesus in the Kingdom.—Daniel 7:27; 2 Timothy 2:12; Revelation 5:9, 10; 14:1, 3.

Earth. God created the earth to be mankind’s eternal home. (Psalm 104:5; 115:16; Ecclesiastes 1:4) God will bless obedient people with perfect health and everlasting life in an earthly paradise.—Psalm 37:11, 34.

Evil and suffering. These began when one of God’s angels rebelled. (John 8:44) This angel, who after his rebellion was called “Satan” and “Devil,” persuaded the first human couple to join him, and the consequences have been disastrous for their descendants. (Genesis 3:1-6; Romans 5:12) In order to settle the moral issues raised by Satan, God has allowed evil and suffering, but He will not permit them to continue forever.

Death. People who die pass out of existence. (Psalm 146:4; Ecclesiastes 9:5, 10) They do not suffer in a fiery hell of torment.
God will bring billions back from death by means of a resurrection. (Acts 24:15) However, those who refuse to learn God’s ways after being raised to life will be destroyed forever with no hope of a resurrection.—Revelation 20:14, 15.

Family. We adhere to God’s original standard of marriage as the union of one man and one woman, with sexual immorality being the only valid basis for divorce. (Matthew 19:4-9) We are convinced that the wisdom found in the Bible helps families to succeed.—Ephesians 5:22–6:1.

Our worship. We do not venerate the cross or any other images. (Deuteronomy 4:15-19; 1 John 5:21) Key aspects of our worship include the following:

Praying to God.—Philippians 4:6.

Reading and studying the Bible.—Psalm 1:1-3.

Meditating on what we learn from the Bible.—Psalm 77:12.

Meeting together to pray, study the Bible, sing, express our faith, and encourage fellow Witnesses and others.—Colossians 3:16; Hebrews 10:23-25.

Preaching the “good news of the Kingdom.”—Matthew 24:14.

Helping those in need.—James 2:14-17.

Constructing and maintaining Kingdom Halls and other facilities used to further our worldwide Bible educational work.—Psalm 127:1.

Sharing in disaster relief.—Acts 11:27-30.

Our organization. We are organized into congregations, each of which is overseen by a body of elders. However, the elders do not form a clergy class, and they are unsalaried. (Matthew 10:8; 23:8) We do not practice tithing, and no collections are ever taken at our meetings. (2 Corinthians 9:7) All our activities are supported by anonymous donations.
The Governing Body, a small group of mature Christians who serve at our world headquarters, provides direction for Jehovah’s Witnesses worldwide.—Matthew 24:45.

Our unity. We are globally united in our beliefs. (1 Corinthians 1:10) We also work hard to have no social, ethnic, racial, or class divisions. (Acts 10:34, 35; James 2:4) Our unity allows for personal choice, though. Each Witness makes decisions in harmony with his or her own Bible-trained conscience.—Romans 14:1-4; Hebrews 5:14.

Our conduct. We strive to show unselfish love in all our actions. (John 13:34, 35) We avoid practices that displease God, including the misuse of blood by taking blood transfusions. (Acts 15:28, 29; Galatians 5:19-21) We are peaceful and do not participate in warfare. (Matthew 5:9; Isaiah 2:4) We respect the government where we live and obey its laws as long as these do not call on us to disobey God’s laws.—Matthew 22:21; Acts 5:29.

Our relationships with others. Jesus commanded: “You must love your neighbor as yourself.” He also said that Christians “are no part of the world.” (Matthew 22:39; John 17:16) So we try to “work what is good toward all,” yet we remain strictly neutral in political affairs and avoid affiliation with other religions. (Galatians 6:10; 2 Corinthians 6:14) However, we respect the choices that others make in such matters.—Romans 14:12.

https://www.jw.org/en/jehovahs-witnesses/faq/jehovah-witness-beliefs/

 

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3 hours ago, Anna said:

But I will list them here too, since this a relevant topic here.

Not that it should matter too much to anyone here, but just to get a discussion started, I will happily state that I am in 100% agreement with all the scriptures in this list. And am in 100% agreement with at least 990 of the 997 words (counted by copying the content portion of this to https://wordcounter.net/).

I found only 3 things I'd take a small issue with:

  1. "Professor Jason D. BeDuhn aptly described it when he wrote that" I agree with this point, but I'm embarrassed that such an important list (for our purposes) has the name and opinion of a "secular" professor in it. Jason DeBuhn's name has been on this list since at least 2015 and has never been removed. It's inconsistent with the rest of the list, which otherwise only highlights a simple Bible basis, not some scholar.
  2. "A person’s works prove that his faith is alive." This isn't necessarily true. A person can have works that look like they are motivated by faith, but are motivated by self-righteousness, a competitive spirit, a desire to earn salvation and be rewarded accordingly, blindly following men, etc., just to mention some common examples.   (Matthew 7:22) . . .Many will say to me in that day: ‘Lord, Lord, did we not . . . perform many powerful works in your name?’
  3. "He began ruling in 1914." Hmmm. I've probably said before that I can't find this one in the Bible. (And it's just about the only sentence that has no scripture to back it up.)  I wish it had said: "We believe Jesus is now ruling invisibly from heaven." Or, "We believe that we now live in a time when Jesus, from his heavenly throne, is giving special attention to matters of the Kingdom on earth."

In addition to those, there are a couple of other things, much less important to me, that I could see changing in the future, and the change wouldn't cause a problem or inconsistency either way. For example, I could see the possibility that the "144,000" is a symbolic number, and might even represent the full number of natural Jewish Christians as easily as it could represent the full number of spiritual Jews. But the list explicitly allows for some expressions to be interpreted symbolically, anyway, so it wouldn't bother me either way to use the expression, "The 144,000 will rule in heaven."  ["We recognize that parts of the Bible are written in figurative or symbolic language and are not to be understood literally.—Revelation 1:1. "]

It's also possible that "blood" in Acts 15 is a symbol for "bloodguilt," such as murder, manslaughter, war, etc., just as "idols" can include things like "gluttony" (Phil 3:19) "greediness" (Col 3:5) and even "pleasing men" (Eph 6:6,7; Gal 1:10)  Personally, for my own conscience, I'm fine with the idea that abstaining from blood transfusions is one way that we abstain from blood. But there's a chance that we as individuals and as an organization should not be imposing this as a rule on the Bible-trained consciences of others.

That idea might already be covered, even if unintentionally, by the very nice idea expressed here: "Our unity allows for personal choice, though. Each Witness makes decisions in harmony with his or her own Bible-trained conscience."

Outside of those few comments, I would be willing to die for the other 990 words out of the 997.

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1 hour ago, JW Insider said:

Professor Jason D. BeDuhn aptly described it when he wrote that" I agree with this point, but I'm embarrassed that such an important list (for our purposes) has the name and opinion of a "secular"

Whoa! I almost said something so dumb that PSomH could call ME a dodo and I would have little defense. 

My quick impression was that if was Jason who agreed, but was embarrassed, etc, leading me to almost ask: I never thought he was a Witness—is he? But after reading the remark 200 time, I see it is you who agree but is embarrassed. 

I dunno. Yeah, I see your point, it is a little odd there, but it is just an appeal to testimonial. After all, if they quoted Bro Splane, people would say, “Well, of course, he would say that.

There is a Russian professor they could have used to, Gordienko? I think, who says: When the authorities make accusations against the Witnesses, the do not realize they are making accusations against the Bible itself.’ He has the advantage of being dead, so the Russian authorities cannot arrest him.

 

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4 hours ago, JW Insider said:

but just to get a discussion started

Speaking of names and opinions, perhaps the authors of this text should list the accompanying comments of each of the GB members, in the list of "core beliefs / doctrines". Why? Because their names and accompanying comments would give “credibility” to every essential point of belief. After all, they are the “guardians of the doctrine,” as Mr. Jackson told the ARC. “Guardians of doctrines” have “power,” since 1919, to shape doctrines and modify them as needed. And that is their practice to this day. Which will continue in the future, as you noticed very well.

Such an even clearer role (more clearly visible to the ordinary believer) for the FDS aka GB as the Main Ecclesiastical Governing Body*, among other things, would have the effect of minimizing the role of the individual who, due to his "immature" biblical conscience and "weak" theocratic knowledge, could put in question his own future and exercise bad influence on the “spirituality” of other members.

“Guardians of doctrine” have in the past, for example, celebrated Christ’s birthday. Then they decided it was a pagan custom. How could this become a pagan custom, when the angels in heaven sang and rejoiced at the moment of Jesus ’birth? Yes, no child born into JW families will become a future “king”. But JW parents can celebrate a child’s birth with faith and hope that it is their child who will become a good human (or at least a future member of the JW church - a little irony).

The "guardians of the doctrine" support the division into clergy and laity. They have confirmed this with statements before the courts, and they confirm this with the practice in assemblies around the world. They are declaratively against it and this teaching is not on the list of "core doctrines", but it is widely used in the daily practice of religion. It is indeed manipulative of GB to oppose the clergy-laity relationship and this they support by biblical passages and quotations and interpretations of those same passages. On the other hand, they makes abundant use of the same form/model that they names and declares unbiblical.

I think many of you will agree that the List of “core doctrines” that is offered is neither accurate nor complete.

*Cobb v. Brede (California Superior Court, San Mateo County February 22, 2012) ("I am general counsel for the National Organization of Jehovah's Witnesses out of Brooklyn, New York. ... We are a hierarchical religion structured just like the Catholic Church").

California’s appeals court provides a generally accurate description of the Jehovah’s Witnesses hierarchy. The relevant upshot is that, “[e]lders are the highest authority at the congregational level,” and, thus, are the Jehovah’s Witnesses equivalent of Roman Catholic priests.5 In order to be appointed an elder, a person must first be a ministerial servant in IAN S. MILLICAN 3 ESTABLISHING DUTY IN CHILD SEX ABUSE CASES AGAINST THE JEHOVAH’S WITNESSES BY IAN S. MILLICAN 2. ESTABLISHING DUTY IN CHILD SEX ABUSE CASES AGAINST THE JEHOVAH’S WITNESSES 4. GOING REMOTE: 2021 EMERGING TRENDS FOR MEDICAL MALPRACTICE LITIGATION 5. ROBINS KAPLAN FILES INJECTAFER CASE 6. NEWS 7. RECOGNITION AND CASE RESULTS good standing.6 Top-down, the Jehovah’s Witnesses, or, “Watchtower,” as the parent-organization is known, is controlled by the Governing Body of eight elders, essentially the board of directors for Watchtower.7 - https://www.robinskaplan.com/-/media/pdfs/newsletters/robins-kaplan-justice-report-winter-2021.pdf?la=en&hash=70455F1B07EC6E66C42EB1DB8E42163E

Here, Petitioner Watchtower sought to protect confidential, intra-faith communications among clergy (elders) regarding Bible-based religious appointment processes, some of which included congregants’ penitential confessions and all of which impacted privacy rights of non-parties..............

...........J.W. asserted she requested Watchtower produce various documents, and Watchtower refused citing the clergy-penitent privilege. https://www.supremecourt.gov/DocketPDF/19/19-40/104104/20190625174601258_288149_Petition.pdf

 

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