“Pay Up Joyfully to Jehovah”: New songbook includes not-so-subtle plea for donations
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Lyrics in the songbook have been changed, apparently to encourage more donations

Lyrics in the songbook have been changed, apparently to encourage more donations

On Sunday we reported on how the 2016 annual meeting was less than thrilling compared to previous years. Witnesses have grown accustomed to these events being used to unveil new publications, announce momentous organizational changes, or reveal “new light” on Bible verses.

But it seems there was something we overlooked, which has since been spotted by the eagle-eyed folks over on the Ex-JW Reddit page. Apparently the new “Sing Out Joyfully” to Jehovah songbook contains more than just praise to Jehovah. It also has a not-so-subtle reminder for Witnesses to dig deep into their pockets and donate.

When I first saw the thread discussing this, I assumed they were referring to the inside cover of the book, with its reminder to visit JW.org to make a donation… but I was mistaken.

It seems the Governing Body has found an even more imaginative way to nudge Witnesses toward the kingdom hall contribution boxes. The words of one of the songs have been changed so that instead saying, “Take my voice and let it sing, Praises always to the King,” the same line now reads, “Take my silver and my gold. Nothing, Lord, would I withhold.”

Comparison image uploaded to Reddit by "reallynothingmuch"

Comparison image uploaded to Reddit by “reallynothingmuch”

 

As has already been noted on this website, the Governing Body’s increased begging for funds has not gone unnoticed, and Witnesses would do well to ask whether such methods are really necessary if the organization truly has God’s backing.

Changing lyrics in songbooks, imposing stealth tithing on congregations and overtly asking for donations on JW Broadcasting to plug income/expenditure shortfalls is certainly a world away from the traditional approach to donations established by Charles Taze Russell, who vowed that his magazine would “never beg nor petition men for support.” (The video below explores Russell’s attitude toward money in more detail.)

Is this latest surreptitious tactic further evidence of growing financial desperation in bethel corridors, or is it perfectly normal for the Almighty Creator of the cosmos to use his organization to ask for money? You decide!

 

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137 Responses to “Pay Up Joyfully to Jehovah”: New songbook includes not-so-subtle plea for donations

  1. Ejecting to Sanity says:

    Wow. Just Wow…

    • Sue brown says:

      To avoid the mark of the beast, it is important to know the identity of the beast. History and the book of Daniel supports that the Babylonian Kingdom was conquered by Medo-Persia; then the Greek Kingdom conquered Medo-Persia and took over. After s time the Romans conquered the Greek Kingdom and took power. The Roman Kingdom was never conquered. However, that pagan Kingdom it lost popularity and ended before the year 1500. The power that came afterwards was the papal Kingdom , which is still ruling the world. At what point did the United nations assume power as the ruling power of the world. If the Roman empire, the legs of iron, ended before 1500 AD, what was the ruling Kingdom until 1920 when the U. N was formed? Daniel’s statue show a steady flow of rulership with no gap between the legs and the feet, so how do you explain that? I really want to know

  2. Alan says:

    I was told by a JW elder last Friday that there are at least 3 songs from the song book that are being deleted. He doesn’t know why as yet

  3. SAM says:

    Every JW know that his monay are alredy dedicated t God

  4. SAM says:

    Cedar, Cedar,…you worry a lot. How can you ask “is it perfectly normal for the Almighty Creator of the cosmos to use his organization to ask for money?”
    Either you do it on purpose or you sneaky people to follow you, or you deceive people who are unconscious.

    From Bible time until now God People ask for money when needed so that they can do God’s will.

    Expl for God asking for money and so on….:
    Exodus 22:29-30 29 “You must not hesitate to make offerings from your abundant produce and the overflow of your presses. The firstborn of your sons you are to give to me. 30 This is what you should do with your bull and your sheep: Seven days it will continue with its mother. On the eighth day, you are to give it to me.

    Exodus 25:1-9 Jehovah then said to Moses: 2 “Tell the people of Israel to take up a contribution for me; from every person whose heart moves him, you are to take up my contribution. 3 This is the contribution that you are to accept from them: gold, silver, copper, 4 blue thread, purple wool, scarlet material, fine linen, goat hair, 5 ram skins dyed red, sealskins, acacia wood, 6 oil for the lamps, balsam for the anointing oil and the perfumed incense, 7 and onyx stones and other stones to be set in the ephʹod and the breastpiece. 8 They are to make a sanctuary for me, and I will reside among them. 9 You are to make it, the tabernacle and all its furnishings, following exactly the pattern that I am showing you.

    Nehemia 10:32: 32 Also, we imposed the obligation on ourselves for each of us to give a third of a shekel yearly for the service of the house of our God, 33 for the layer bread, the regular grain offering, the regular burnt offering of the Sabbaths and the new moons, and for the appointed feasts, for the holy things, for the sin offerings to make atonement for Israel, and for all the work of the house of our God.

    Please Cedar stop lying people…

    The Bible say: Proverbs 11:9 By his mouth the apostate brings his neighbor to ruin, But by knowledge the righteous are rescued.

    • Winston Smith says:

      Sam,
      All you have shown is that it is common for religion to fleece its flock for money even back in ancient times. Who benefitted from these offerings, was it God or his self promoted human representatives? Christendom’s televangelists tell us the same thing: God wants you to send us your money. How are the JWs any different?

      The question was why would the all powerful creator of the cosmos need an organization to collect money for him? Do not the heavens and earth and all within already belong to him? Who really benefits from the money donated today and what purpose is it used for?

      WS

      • Anita Gamble says:

        One difference is JW donations are private donations from that persons own will.I have been to many other churches where they pass a plate around 2 to 3 times asking for money every week. We see on the news that these so called holy people are asking for money with a minimum of 500 to 1000 dollars from there members in especially in poor areas to benefit themselves in luxury things, as witnesses use it for bills and to help out neighborin congregations and they provide a itemized list every month of all income and expenses. 2 Corinthians 9:7 says let each one do just as he has resolved in his heart, not grudgingly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.
        I would say there is a big difference.

        • Roger Goode says:

          @Anita, I just have to ask one question – there may be an itemized list of local expenses and income as you have correctly mentioned, but why does the organisation not declare its global finances to the rank and file members? If things were as they should be this would not be a problem IMHO.

    • Caroline says:

      Sam, you really should watch jwbroadcasting to see where your money is going. Look at the world headquarters compound that was built for the Governing Body in Warwick. Look at all the branches and the kingdom halls. All that property belongs to the Watchtower Society and it was all built on the backs and charity of goodhearted brothers and sisters thinking that they were doing God’s will and to preach the word to all the ends of the earth and then the end would come, right?

      If the Society really believed that the end was near, then why build for themselves all those “storehouses” that they don’t need?

      Have you looked lately at the “food” that the Watchtower is printing? It’s nothing but fluff. If they were really serious about the “end” coming anytime soon, the message they would be spreading would be serious because people’s lives would be at stake, but all it is is fluff.

      Just spreading the name of Jehovah is pointless because the name Jehovah was never in the Bible in the first place. Look it up in the Watchtower’s own publication the 1980 Watchtower Feb. 1 “The Divine Name in Later Times” on page 11. The name was an invention by a Catholic monk in the 1200’s.

      Spreading the Bible’s message is pointless if that message is not true too. Just preaching is pointless if it’s not true. You can’t just take the word of the Watchtower as true but you need to do your own research. I personally have an 1885 Imperial Bible Dictionary and the Society misquotes that dictionary when it comes to the cross. The Society deliberately leaves out of the quote from that dictionary that by the time the Romans were killing people on the stauros (fence post), they were using a cross piece. When you go from door to door, if you preach that Jesus did not die on a cross, you would be preaching lies.

      Are you okay with that? The Society knows full well what they are doing and they are making dupes of Witnesses by having them spread untruths, thinking they are saving the world and what they are really doing, is building a huge real estate empire for the Watchtower publishing corporation.

      You need to research when Jerusalem was “really” destroyed by Babylon. Was it 607 B.C.E. like the Watchtower says or was it 587/587 B.C.E. like what every enclyclopedia will tell you it happened? Don’t let the Society make a fool out of you by spreading that foolish lie.

      Think about all the lands where there aren’t any Witnesses to spread the word. There are literally billions of people in the world where there isn’t a single Witness and according to the Bible, doesn’t it say “This good news of the kingdom will be preached throughout the earth and the end will come”.

      Watchtower is laughing at you.

      • Caroline says:

        587/586 is when Jerusalem was really destroyed, not 587/587 like what I put down above. Look it up for yourself Sam.

        Don’t think that the Watchtower isn’t just like any other religion that uses the Bible to make people feel guilty about “donating” to Jehovah.

        • SAM says:

          Acording to the Bible Jerusalemn was destroy in 607 BCE and not according to secular history

          • Caroline says:

            Sam where in the Bible does it say that Jerusalem was destroyed in 607 B.C.E.?

            You said that a person has to back up what they say with the Bible so you should be able to find that in the Bible, right?

            If you can show me that in the Bible, I will go back to meetings and repent, seriously.

          • C Payne says:

            Wrong Sam. According to the Bible Jerusalem was destroyed in 587-586 bce.
            Accepting this historical truth will not in any way hamper your Society’s flawed teaching concerning 1914 and the trampling of Jerusalem by the nations.
            Sam, Jeremiah’s 70 years for Jerusalem serving the king of Babylon began when king Nebuchadnezzar, in his first year, entered Jerusalem 607-606 and took Jehoiakim into exil along with many temple articles and placed Jehoiachin on Jerusalem’s throne, and Jerusalem and all Judah became a Vessal kingdom to the Babylonians. Thus, the beginning of Jeremiah’s 70 year prophecy of Jerusalem serving king Nebuchadnezzar.
            Jerusalem’s destruction came about because of king Zedekiah’s rebellion against Nebuchadnezzar.
            Jeremiah 27:17 says to king Zedekiah
            “….Serve the king of Babylon, and you will live. Why should this city become a ruin?
            Of course, Jedekiah listened to his false prophets and continued his rebellion, causing the destruction of Jerusalem in 587 bce, in the 20th year of Jeremiah’s 70 year prophecy.

      • SAM says:

        If tell somthing about God the Creator you will use a Bible text. But this show you can not use the Bible to prouve what you say.

      • Anita Gamble says:

        Actually the watch tower is serious about the end being near. They talk about how important the preaching work is because we are in the last days.
        Matthew 24:14 says and this good news of the kingdom will be preached in all the inhabited earth for a witness to all the nations, and then the end will come.
        Mark 13:10 says also in all the nation’s the good news has to be preached

        Peter, Paul James John and Andrew asked Jesus when the end would come and he said in Mark 13:5-8 look out that nobody misleads you, many will come on the basis of my name, saying that I am he, and will be misled by many, moreover, when you hear of wars and reports of wars, do not be alarmed; these things must take place, but the end is not yet. For nation will rise against nation and kingdom against kingdom; there will be earthquakes in one place after another; there will also be food shortages. These are a beginning of pangs of distress.
        So the preaching work and literature is not pointless. Also the bible refers to Jesus dying on a stake which was also know as a tree. Even the Catholic encyclopedia acknowledged that the cross had nothing to do with Jesus and was used for other things before Jesus and had nothing to do with his death.
        The earliest bible and scrolls reveal goods name as Jehovah but some “religious leaders” took his name out and replaced it with God or Lord because they felt his name was to sacred to say.
        Sam is right about Jerusalem. The bible does not specifically say when Jerusalem was destroyed by Babylon, but it does say that the exile in Babylon ended after Cyrus conquered Babylon and freed the jews, who returned to Jerusalem in 537 B.C.E., and the bible says that the exile lasted 70 years so it must have begin in 607 B.C.E.
        YES, there are a lot of areas that witnesses aren’t able to spread the word but the bible also says that Jehovah will resurrect those who do not know him. Some areas are impossible to reach or takes days to get too. The preaching work will continue until the end comes.

        • Winston Smith says:

          @Anita
          Are you counting your time while on this site? But seriously, you are quoting basic JW teachings that have long since been shown to be flawed to many of us who are former elders and Bethelites who have long since researched these areas. The explanations are to lengthy to include here. You should check some of the thorough research at jwfacts.com. I also recommend the book “The Gentile Times Reconsidered” by Carl Olof Jonsson.

          One point I will mention is that the scriptures do NOT say that the exile would last 70 years. Read closely and you will find that they state that the nations around Israel would serve Babylon for 70 years. This will be more evident if you move beyond the biased NWT and cross check against other translations.

          WS

        • Winston Smith says:

          @Anita Gamble,

          My earlier comment appears to have been blocked. Your comment above is nothing more than a regurgitation of the JW dogma that we were all exposed to early in the indoctrination process. Your reasoning on the 70 years is the standard flawed argument presented by Watchtower. This is discussed in detail in “The Gentile Times Reconsidered” by Olaf Jonsson. I suggest you do some more research on the topic.

          There is also abundant evidence that cross-shaped instruments were used for impalement and that the early Christians accepted that Jesus died on a cross (see http://www.jwfacts.com/watchtower/cross-or-stake.php).

          The name Jehovah was invented by Catholic scholars in the 1200’s. The Jewish Encyclopedia refers to this translation as a “philological impossibility.” Furthermore, of the 5,255 known New Testament Greek fragments, not one of them contain the Tetragrammaton anywhere, and yet the Watchtower has the audacity to introduce it at mutliple instances in their version of the New Testament.

          I could proceed to refute the other arguments you make, but I think the point is made. You need to do your own research rather than simply parroting the WBTS.

          WS

  5. Freedom says:

    Sam would God not know that previous bethel expansions around the globe would not be required and shipping enormous printing presses from country to country would not be required due to internet/electronic form of communicating and passing on information would become the dominate way of communicating? If the JW is God’s organisation, the God’s spirit would not have directed the organisation to waste money and resources on things that would become obsolete. Millions of dollars were spent on printing machines and building bethel homes around the world just years after being built they are now unoccupied and/or sold – what a waste of time, resources and not to mention the hours people have worked and laboured on those projects and buildings. Would God not have known all of the buildings and printing presses were not needed and thus direct his spirit to guide his organisation from spending money on unnecessary things. Of course God knew.

  6. Boldtruth says:

    The song lyrics: “Take my silver and my gold is scriptural.”
    Taken from Joshua 6:19
    “But all the silver and the gold and the articles of copper and iron are holy to Jehovah. They should go into the treasury of Jehovah.”

  7. Andrew says:

    Sam still as a vail over his eyes it’s so ovius that a God of love would not let his organisation lead his people on for over a hundred years by stretching out the meaning of a generation read the old live forever book page 154 in the 80s when I came into the truth this was a fundermental part of there teaching,also the good news as Carolin bought out I always had a problem with this there are people In the would that will never know the good news and will never here it before the now aged governing body pass away in death what then ,the worst thing for me as been watching the fear of true conversation enter the Kingdom Halls,all you can talk about is you health you all know what I mean ther is a fear griping everyone for fear of reprove now they just wont money giving robots. I saw a group of 4 witnesses that I still know they looked so sad the slow walk the fear of what the elders would say to them it’s so sad.to end I would like to say I have onestly over 30 years watched the love leave the scociety to be replaced buy nort Korea like fear of everyone and if you are not happy maybe it’s not the truth ,happy are those conscious of there spiritual mind of couse it might just be the k/h I go to but I live between us & the UK it’s pervasive.

  8. Gerry Parker says:

    Much ado about nothing. That’s why God grows tired of you all, folks. Much blob blob blob and less Jesus. If by far you all followed Jesus, you would treat well your enemies. What I see is just a bunch of whistle blowers and nothing else left to self improvement. Forgive my frank French, though….

    • John Redwood says:

      Dear Gerry

      Thank you for your insightful comments. I appreciate the fact that you seem to have a direct link to God, since you are aware of his disapproval of our “blob blob blob”. If you have an email or a memo from God backing up your claim, please forward this to JW Survey and we will write an article on this subject.

      As for self-improvement, we would recommend that you see a therapist first, or perhaps obtain an education which will improve your skills and happiness in life. Unfortunately, God, Buddha, Jesus and other well-known religious figureheads will neither respond to you or help you in your quest for improvement. They do not operate web sites, cure cancer,conduct research, or protect their believers from physical and sexual abuse, or sudden death from various causes. Only humans who care about others show such compassion and initiative.

      As for JW Survey, we are proud to be whistle-blowers, and we thank you for calling us that name. By shedding light on religious schemes to solicit donations, we expose the part of human society which is genuinely uninterested in helping suffering victims, but prefers to collect cash and property, then shift the burden of human suffering on imaginary spirit beings whose job is to wreak further destruction upon mankind at the upcoming battle of “Armageddon”.

      So – if the whistle blowing is hurting your ears, either cover those ears and run, or have a good listen begin thinking critically. You might enjoy this form of self-improvement

      JR

  9. Stephen says:

    The Jehovah’s Witnesses started off, in the Russell days, with songs taken almost entirely from standard Christian collections. A few “millennial” changes were made, but not many. By the 1970s, they had gone completely off the tracks, banning all the great tunes and all the lyrics, no matter whether they agreed with them or not. This “new” addition to one of their songs (I hate to think what the tune may be) is a reversion to the famous song by the redoubtable Frances Havergal (died 1879), which is sung throughout conservative “Christendom” every Sunday https://www.hymnal.net/en/hymn/h/445. “Take my silver and my gold / Not a mite would I withhold.” So the Witnesses can use Christendom’s songs when there’s a purpose. Of course, their members won’t know the difference, because they are isolated from the beauty of traditional Christian worship and never realize where the words they use came from. The silly introduction of the syllable “Jah” and the other wanton revisions to Havergal’s song could not possibly be done by anyone with any taste or respect for beauty. But there is someone at Witness hq who is investigating and poaching from Christendom’s heritage.

  10. Isaac Asukwo says:

    Actually, Jehovah is the God of love,during his creation time he create a variety include human (Human was so special to him on that note he made them by his image and likeness and he install in them the freedom of choice)so therefore Jehovah is willing and eagerly to mold who soever want him to mold he or she to his standard Deuteronomy 30:19-20.

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