Banning Witnesses: Making a bad situation worse.
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Shunning.

The refusal of blood transfusions.

The deliberate refusal to report child abuse to the authorities.

These are probably the three most harmful practices that the Watchtower organisation is guilty of. The Unholy Trinity, if you will.

Granted, there are many more problems in Watchtower, but few are of quite the same magnitude. Telling people they can’t wear tight pants? Stupid but not something that warrants an FBI investigation. Not turning a known child abuser over to law enforcement as a matter of policy, however? That’s something the FBI should be very interested in.

These three things: shunning, blood, and child abuse, are the ones that most activists feel warrant a Governmental response due to the massive level of emotional and physical harm they can inflict, up to and including the loss of life.

I completely agree with them.

But should that legal response be a ban on the religion of Jehovah’s Witnesses? Some would say so, and on the surface this might seem sensible. After all, things that are very harmful should automatically be illegal, right?

Well not always.

History has many examples of things that are harmful becoming even more so when placed under ban; take a look at Prohibition America. Or take another example: cheating on a spouse is clearly harmful, and unethical, but most people would not want the Government to imprison you for it, and would be terrified of a Government that wanted the power do so.

The most obvious answers to problems are not always the right ones, and the recent actions by the Russian Government, which looks set to ban the religion of Jehovah’s Witnesses, are sadly just going to make a bad situation worse.

Why do I say this? As someone who is very aware of the awful damage Watchtower’s teachings can inflict, and who agrees that something urgent needs to be done at the Governmental and legal level, why on earth would I oppose a ban?

For two reasons.

Firstly such a ban is deeply unethical, for reasons well articulated by JW Survey founder Lloyd Evans here,

Secondly it won’t work. In fact, it will actively make worse the very issues that cause most people to want the religion banned.

I recognise that some who read this article will not agree with me on this, and so I am going to present a detailed argument to showcase why I have arrived at this conclusion. It’s my hope that by the end I will have convinced you, or at the very least you will better understand my position and that this will enable discussion going forward.

Banning belief does not stop belief.

Jehovah’s Witnesses endured the living hell of the concentration camps rather than renounce their faith in Nazi Germany

Lets begin with the obvious. If Jehovah’s Witnesses are banned, they don’t suddenly stop being Jehovah’s Witnesses. This might seem like an obvious point to make but it rests at the very core of understanding why a ban will fail in the real world:

Just because people are no longer allowed to believe a thing does not mean that they will stop believing that thing.

History teaches us this time and time again. Indeed, one can look at the Witnesses themselves for proof. This group has been repeatedly subject to bans in the past, and continues to be banned in a number of countries today. Has this ban resulted in the cessation of Witness activity in these places?

Of course not.

Rather, we see that Witnesses still believe what they believe. Historically they have even chosen to undergo horrific abuse and persecution, up to and including torture and execution, rather than renounce their faith after a ban. And eventually, when the ban is lifted, the JW’s are still there and are often some of the most energised and faithful JW’s on the planet.

Thus all one has to show for the weeping mountain of human torment and blood soaked misery caused by a ban is the same JW organisation, right back where it was, often stronger and more faithful than before.

So that’s the first thing to understand. Enacting a ban is not a magic “make-cult-go-away” wand. Now that we’ve established this key point, lets move on the “Unholy Trinity” and I will lay out my case for why the ban won’t stop these things but will make them even worse.

Shunning: Why a ban will make it worse.

As we have discussed, banning a belief does not stop people believing it. Thus, Witnesses who believed in shunning before the ban will also believe in shunning after the ban. In fact, it will get worse.

Why?

Because now, for a JW, cutting off and avoiding those who leave the faith isn’t just a matter of their spiritual life and death. It’s a matter of their physical life and death as well, and the life and death of the fellow Witnesses around them.

Imagine that you are a JW, part of this forbidden group. Your congregation has gone to ground, your worship, your study, your preaching work is done in secret. If the details or even the existence of any of this got out, you risk arrest and imprisonment. Now, ask yourself:

If you were a JW, are you more likely or less likely to associate with those you consider hostile to your faith in this situation?

If you think your JW family is shunning you now, just wait until a ban hits and they vanish off the face of the Earth. Additionally, for the many faded ones who’ve struck a certain equilibrium with their JW family and still have a measure of contact, such a ban could result in even that limited contact being frozen and cut off as Witnesses begin to fear for their freedom and their lives, and become even more insular to protect their group.

Also: If you think a ban gives you some leverage to force your family to associate with you, you might want to think again. I mean, how exactly is this supposed to play out? You demand that your mother associate with you again, as her religion and its shunning policy are now illegal. She refuses as she still believes the shunning teaching, as history proves that she will.

So you call the police…and send her to prison? Or maybe get the police to force your mother at gunpoint to sit at a table with you and have a meal? I bet that’ll be a fun time.

See the problem here?

Lloyd Evans made this very point in his recent BBC interview: imprisonment is not a proportionate response to shunning.

Refusal of Blood Transfusions: Why a ban will make it worse.

Let’s be direct here: The blood teaching has cost lives across the decades and will continue to cost them for as long as non-blood alternatives remain second best in certain medical scenarios, or until Watchtower abandons its discredited blood policy, which ever comes first.

And a ban is just going to make that situation even worse.

How so?

Well, as we have said, people do not stop believing a thing just because it is banned. After a ban, Witness will still believe that it is far better to die than get a blood transfusion. After all, if you die you get resurrected in the blink of an eye to a wonderful paradise Earth full of your loved ones. If you take blood, no paradise for you (and possibly no friends or family in this old world either as the shunning takes affect.)

So how will this play out under ban? Well, JW’s now know that if they go to hospital and refuse blood, they have instantly identified themselves as part of a banned religion. Remember, membership of a banned religion is illegal. So what will happen is firstly that they will be probably be given blood against their will (governments that don’t respect freedom of religion usually also fail to respect a person’s rights to decide their own medical treatment) and then they risk being handed over to the police for interrogation and possibly prison.

If you are a JW who belives that death is the doorway to paradise, are you more or less likely to seek out medical help in this situation? 

After all, if you die, you get resurrected in the blink of an eye to a wonderful paradise Earth full of all your loved ones, free from this nightmare world that wants to imprison you alongside rapists and killers. Sadly, one can even imagine that ones might be pressured into this by the JW community, who fear that a hospitalised and interrogated JW might give up others in the congregation.

A ban isn’t going to save lives. It’s going to cost them. That’s before we even touch on the issue of JW’s who might die in police custody, or be beaten or stabbed to death in prison.

Not reporting Child Abuse: Why a ban will make it worse.

The findings of The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse make for gruesome reading. The Commission found that since the 1950’s Watchtower, as a matter of explicit policy, has not reported over 1006 child abusers in its congregations to the police.

Full details can be reviewed here but essentially the ARC found that Watchtower would take no internal action over an accusation of child abuse unless there were two witnesses to the abuse, and even if internal disciplinary action over the abuse did take place, the Watchtower organisation would not report the abuser to the police unless legally required to do so by law.

Sounds like a quick ban on the religion will sort this one out right?

Nope.

It will make it worse.

Firstly, as any former Jehovah’s Witness knows, and as was confirmed during the ARC hearings, Watchtower fosters in the Witness community a distrust of secular authorities. In fact, this was cited as one of the reasons as to why the Witnesses (in some cases even the victims themselves) seemed reluctant to involve law enforcement in the instances of child sex abuse. Keep in mind that the JW culture studied at the ARC existed in a liberal democracy where the police existed to protect and serve the public, and by extension the Witnesses.

Imagine what will happen when the police no longer protect and serve, but hunt and arrest JW’s as a matter of policy.

For Witnesses under a ban, the police and state become the enemy. They no longer protect and serve, they are no longer a safe haven. They arrest and imprison. Witnesses who are already wary of approaching the police will be even less inclined to do so. An abuse victim now knows that his or her going to the police might expose many Witnesses that they still love who were not part of the abuse. The victim themselves might still believe the religion is true, and not want to harm it by contacting authorities who are directly opposed.

How much better to not seek one’s own advantage but the advantage of others.

And how much better to wait on Jehovah and let him resolve matters.

Additionally consider the leverage that this gives a molester. The elders now know that if they take any action against him, his response could be to go right to the police, tell them that he has escaped the banned religious cult known as Jehovah’s Witnesses, but can give them the names and locations of many active members.

Do you think elders are more or less likely to take effective action against abusers in this situation, especially in situations where they have only one witnesses and an element of doubt in their mind? And are the elders more or less likely in this situation to apply pressure to the survivor to let them handle things in-house, and not bring in the jackbooted police-thugs of Satan’s world?

 Support solutions that work.

At the end of the day, the simple fact is that if you are concerned about the worst abusive practices of Watchtower, you will want solutions that effectively tackle them, not solutions that will make them worse.

Bans make these abuses worse.

There are solutions that can tackle these abuses effectively. Take for example the issue of Watchtower failing to report child abuse. Governments should introduce mandatory abuse reporting laws, and then criminally prosecute any elders who ignore those laws and those in the Watchtower hierarchy who instructed them to do so. This would either force Watchtower to report each accusation to the police, or if they refused would decimate Watchtower’s power structure and hold the Governing Body directly to account. It would also directly target those involved in covering up the abuse without needing to destroy the lives of the 90% of Witnesses who don’t even know the child abuse issue exists, let alone the details of the two witness rule.

Or take for example, the policy of shunning. We’ve discussed how one cannot “ban” shunning in any real sense, unless you want your relatives to eat with you at gunpoint, but Watchtower can certainly be stripped of any charitable status and tax breaks unless it agrees to renounce the policy. The resulting financial blow would be crippling to the organisation, pressuring them to either relax the shunning policy or to vastly hasten their own financial meltdown if they refuse.

Targeted solutions can make a genuine difference. Bans will just create even more misery.

I’ve not even touched here on the issue of how Watchtower membership numbers rot away in the free world but tend to hold steady under ban.

I’ve not even touched here on how bans make it far harder for JW’s to wake up and leave, or how they effectively trap the young born-in’s within the mental walls of a cult under siege, whilst doing very little to stop the organisation preying on the weak and vulnerable with covert informal witnessing.

And I’ve not even touched on how Governments that ban JW’s tend also to be the Governments that rack up human rights abuses on the rest of the population as well. The price of removing the human rights from one group is often watching those same rights get ripped away from everyone else.

In fact, I’d like to end on that point, with a poem written by German Lutheran pastor Martin Niemöller. It was written to reflect events that took place in Germany’s Third Reich, and highlights the dangers of passively accepting (or even welcoming) the persecution and abuse of groups other than your own by the Government.

First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Socialist.

Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Trade Unionist.

Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Jew.

Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.

This poem is inscribed on the United States Holocaust Memorial in Washington.

I urge you to learn from history.

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Follow JW Survey on Twitter @jwsurveyorg

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647 Responses to Banning Witnesses: Making a bad situation worse.

  1. Whip It says:

    Johny Quest, i suggest you stop looking at this site, it seems to already have tainted you, this weeks WT, states that the GB are neither inspired or infallible, self confessed dooms day colt.

    • Johnny Quest says:

      Whip It,
      Glad to read that you are keeping up with your study of the Watchtower, although I’m not sure apostates and antichrists like you have any hope, although it’s not up to me.
      By the way, have you ever wondered why the top two best selling magazines in the World, Watchtower and Awake are listed as “best selling” when they are not really for sale, and have you ever wondered why that although they are so widely distributed, the organisation does not seek to capitalise on this extraordinary opportunity to make billions through the commercial enterprise of putting adverts in the literature and be like all other religions who greedily pursuit money. Ever wondered why? The answer is available.

      So then, Yes the Governing Body as far back as I can remember when I accepted the truth, have always maintained that they are imperfect and that they are therefore not infallible. What’s new about that.
      The important thing is that through constant study and Holy Spirit, Bible truth has been clarified.
      Why not research the previous false teachings of Jehovahs Witnesses in the past and then see how clarification was needed and was provided. Study how Jesus’s apostles and disciples made mistakes and were not infallible. There are numerous examples in the modern day and back in the first century.

      Then why not ask yourself the question as stated by Jesus Christ “who really is the faithful and discreet slave”
      Have you any idea who it is, Whip It.? No………are you sure? Go on, have a go.
      Oh well never mind, go back to burying your head in the sand!!!

      • Ricardo says:

        @Johnny Quest,
        The governing body of the first century was no doubt also fallible and not inspired. Some members had ideas which were not scriptural. What makes the governing body of the first century different to the modern day governing body?

        Answer: The first century governing body never published anything which wasn’t inspired (Acts 15:28). You try to find anything that wasn’t ispired- you can’t. Our modern GB has decided to be different and has published many things which are not inspired. If there was a gold medal given out for misunderstanding Jesus’ illustrations, our GB would win it. We may not understand the explanation the GB gives, we may not agree with it, but we must accept it, knowing it may well be false, for the sake of the truth, for unity, and so that we don’t get disfellowshipped. Is it humility on the part of the GB to force us to accept what they print, knowing it may well be wrong? Why not just say the illustration may mean this, and then let us use our Bible-based conscience to decide whether we agree or not? Do the GB really understand what fallible means?

      • I Foster says:

        Johnny Quest. Have YOU any idea who the FDS is? Go on, you have a go.

        In 2012 the Governing Body announced that collectively they are the Faithful and Discreet Slave, and as individuals they are domestics. Also, the 144,000 (or remnant still alive on Earth) are no longer considered to be the FDS and never have been. They are, and always have been, domestics only. This was the new light coming from the GB in 2012.
        Previous to this, the remnant of the 144,000 was considered to be the FDS and the GB were their representatives.
        The GB didn’t exist until 1976, so who were representing the remnant before this? Freddy Franz, Nathan Knorr and Judge Rutherford all said that the FDS was the remnant of the 144,000 and that they were just their representatives.
        Even before it was claimed that Jesus chose the FDS in 1919, Charles Taze Russell was undecided if he himself was the FDS or it was the anointed remnant on Earth.
        However, we now understand that they were all in error because we now know from the present GB that the remnant of the 144,000 alive on Earth never were the FDS.
        So, who does the Watchtower now claim that Jesus chose to be the FDS in 1919?
        By process of elimination, there was no FDS between 1919 and 2012. It was not until 2012 that the FDS was finally identified as the present GB, who claimed the title for themselves. So, Johnny Quest, who do you identify as being the FDS between 1919 and 2012? Also, Jesus did not choose the GB to be the FDS in 2012, they chose this for themselves. Do you really fall for this fiasco of messy Watchtower theology?

    • Ricardo says:

      @Whip It,
      Does it seem right to you that our fellow brother has just called you an apostate and ant-christ, on an apostate site? That’s the pits, right bro?

      Does it remind you of Jesus? Can you see the love in that statement? The personal concern, brotherly affection, compassion? I mean, when witnesses start calling other witnesses ‘apostates’ on apostate sites, how can our organization survive? How much more hypocrasy can there be? Surely our org must fall, it is just too ridiculous. One of the first signs of a big split about to happen is Johnny Quest.

  2. Johnny Quest says:

    Caroline,

    You seem to have no idea what true religion is or what it means and you have no interest in seeking it for yourself.
    For what purpose are you asking me for evidence.?

    You also have no idea what false religion is and what it means either.

    I don’t do YouTube. So no, I don’t have any interest in the testimony of persons called to give evidence in Australian Courts. Incidentally, when did I ever say that Watchtower was the true religion.? Watchtower is not a religion.

    We have a Leader, Jesus, and he said that true religion would be known by the “fruits” it produces. Please don’t ask me to explain “fruits”. Look it up for yourself, It’s staring you all in the face.!!!

    Jehovahs Witnesses teach Bible truth. They have exposed false doctrines like a fiery hell, immortal soul, Easter, Halloween, Christmas etc etc. etc etc. Yes Caroline Jesus is not Almighty God. He himself said he was the Son of God.

    So why don’t you go off and do some Bible research and get back to me when you find another religion that teaches the Truth about the Bible.

    Why not then do some honest , open minded comparisons and research on The Holy Koran, Chairman Mao’s works, Book of Morman, Hindhu Teachings etc etc etc. Why not go off and enhance your knowledge on Evolution.

    At the end of the day, I have no doubt that you will discover that they offer no hope for you or anyone one else on this forum.

    So therefore I challenge you to prove me wrong. Why not do your research and then get back to me with the results of your renewed knowledge and wisdom and then offer these sad,blind, lost hopeless causes, apostates and antichrists on this forum enlightenment and a peaceful and secure and happy future.

    • Caroline says:

      Johnny Quest, how long have you been in the “truth”? I began studying in 1964 and was baptized in January 1966. I have a long history of being in the “truth” and have kept up with all the literature through the years.

      I have an extensive library of Watchtower literature, from the early 1900’s up until just the last 2 years. Do you have Watchtower bound volumes since 1951 without any missing years? I do. I have a huge library of Bibles even Hebrew Bibles, Bible literature, Bible history books and the Encyclopaedia Britannica and presently I am taking college classes on the introduction in the Christian Greek Scriptures. According to my 1976 Encyclopaedia Britannica under Moloch, it says that Moloch and Yahweh is the same god.I learned more about the Bible in the first 6 hours attending those college classes than I did in all the 50 years that I did attending meetings at the Kingdom Hall.

      Do you realize that the Watchtower Society says that Jesus is only the mediator for the Governing Body? You should get out your Insight books under the topic of Mediator and find that out for yourself but if you don’t have those books, get out the book printed by the Society called “Worldwide Security Under the Prince of Peace” on page 10, if you don’t believe it so you can see it for yourself.

      Look up in any ancient history book or even Wikipedia and see when Jerusalem really fell and you will find out it really was destroyed in 586/587 B.C.E. not 607 B.C.E. like Watchtower wants you to think so 1914 comes out. If you were to find out when Jerusalem really was destroyed and told anybody else in your congregation, you would be called into the back room and disfellowshiped for apostasy. Do you think it is okay to be afraid for you to investigate your own religion and then disfellowship you for doing that?

      I could care less about hell fire or the immortal soul or the trinity. It doesn’t matter what you believe, it’s in the Bible.

      The Bible is full of contradictions. All you have to do is read the gospel accounts side by side and compare them and you will see that it’s like it’s describing 4 different people. Paul’s letters were written first, then Mark, then Matthew and Luke and then John about 40 years later. John’s gospel is 90% different than the other gospel accounts.

      You know nothing about the Bible. You are being taught maybe 200 scriptures to disprove the trinity and hell fire etc. and that’s it.

      You are being taught that Armageddon is coming any minute and it’s up to you to inform the world because God doesn’t want anybody to be destroyed, don’t you? You are being taught that just as in the days of Noah, so it is today with people eating and drinking and not taking notice and then their destruction comes. Watchtower is a doomsday cult and that religion is built around Armageddon and Watchtower as built itself into probably the largest real estate owners in the history of the world because of that one little scripture found in Revelation. It has really worked for them to build up their real estate empire.

      They are taking advantage of your fear of Armageddon and guilting you into thinking if you don’t go in service, that all those dead bodies will be your fault.

      We all know exactly what you believe. Try and figure out why the ark story would make sense for just one example from the Bible.

      One of the many things I would want you to consider is why would God destroy the whole world including all the animals with just 23 feet of water because there were some angels that decided to come to the earth and produce human bodies for themselves and make big kids that are called giants?

      Wasn’t Jesus the only one who “created” everything? How could all those angels each and every one of them “create” human bodies for themselves then? Why did they want to have intercourse with women? Did they have penises and produce sperm? Why not punish the angels instead of all the people and the animals?

      The questions go on and on, with just the ark story.

      We all accepted the Genesis account as history but to me, it’s an allegory and nothing else.

      There is no such thing as an “inspired” Bible. Even according to the Society, the only “inspired” scriptures were the originals and there are no originals.

      If you really think you know more about the Bible than I do, you are sadly mistaken. If you really want to defend the Bible as coming from God, you really need to pay attention to it when you read it because if the Hebrew Bible is really describing the creator God, then that God is disgusting.

      Something that really gets me is when people say how we need to follow God but which God are you talking about? The god of the Hebrew Scriptures or the god of the Greek Scriptures?

      Can you think of any of the commands of the god of the Hebrew Scriptures that you need to follow? Think about it.

      I think when you think of following god, you are actually thinking about Jesus’ teachings and Paul’s teachings and not Jehovah, the god that Rutherford decided to name the religion after.

      I have over 30 pages (taken from the Concordance) that shows that the god of the Jews was a volcano god and Acts 7:43 proves it, which proves to me that you are serving an ancient Canaanite god and you are serving a god that demanded for those people to murder their own children by burning their children in order for him to bless them with good crops and to win wars against millions of people who did not fight back, hacking men, women and children to death by hacking them to death with swords but keeping the virgin girls for themselves that they could rape and pillage.

      Are you still proud to call yourself a Jehovah’s Witness?

  3. GEM says:

    @ Johnny Quest: I assume you are not one of the “Genuine” JWs you are referring to, as you are deliberately disobeying your Golden Calf, the Watchtower.

    My pathway during the 1970’s found me amongst some of the most wonderful people I have ever met.

    To whom do You Belong, Johnny? Do you miss the cucumbers and good life of Egypt…because WT certainly does!

    I will not worship the Golden Calf…and Caroline, though I recognise your research into the many gods of the Middle East…why should that alter my belief in an all loving Creator? And, certainly I would follow the way shown by the man they called Jesus…. I would not trample on his blood as an Anti-Christ. Equally, Johnny, if you study your own Religion, has it not become Apostate? To whom do YOU belong?

    • Caroline says:

      Gem, I don’t want to alter your belief in an all loving Creator. I have no idea how we got here but I do not believe that all life on earth evolved from a one celled amoeba either.

      I have no idea about how we got here and it does seem like we would have had to have been “made” by a loving creator but I do not have any respect for the Jew’s god in the Bible either because of the description of Yahweh in the Bible.

      It doesn’t take any research into ancient religions and Canaanite gods and history books to see what kind of god Yahweh is. All you have to do is break open up your Bible and read about Him to see.

      What helped me to realize what kind of god, that Yahweh is, is by looking at other books that drew my attention to those scriptures that describe Jehovah in the my Bible in the ugliest of terms.

      Before that, all I did was read the Bible and I did not pay any attention to the ugly parts but now I have pages and pages of a description of a very ugly God that the Jews worshipped and it’s from the Bible.

      Interestingly, the Jews today do not take the Hebrew Scriptures as fact but the “Christians” do.

      The Jews of today realize that the ancient Israelites burned their babies in the fire to Yahweh and they regret that their ancestors did that and like my 1976 Encyclopaedia says, Scholars believe that the Jews were so ashamed that their ancestors burned their children to Yahweh, that they changed the name of Yahweh to Moloch in Acts 7:43 to make people think that they had been killing their children to foreign gods and not to their god Yahweh.

      If you pay attention to the “Law” given to Moses, you will clearly see that the Law required that they were to “give” all their firstborn to Jehovah and be burnt and killed and in Acts 7:43 Stephen says it was to angels that they worshipped and it was the “tent” of Moloch that they were following through the wilderness for forty years and remember that Jesus said that the Jews’ father was the devil.

      Watchtower would have you believe that that Jesus was referring to the serpent in Genesis 3:15 but how do we know that Jesus wasn’t referring to Abraham’s god Yahweh when he said that because it’s not until you get into the Greek scriptures, that we first hear about the devil.

      I am okay with not knowing how we got here but most people want to give thanks to the “creator” and that includes people all over the world with many, many gods that they think made the heavens and earth.

      Everybody from time immemorial have been taught from their parents to believe in a god and they grow up in believing that there is that invisible god watching over them and judging them and they truly believe that and every time something good happens, they think that their god is blessing them and every time something bad happens, they think it’s the devil doing it.

      There’s a famous experiment they did with kids when they were told not to eat something (forget what it was) and when the teacher stepped out of the room, some disobeyed but when the teacher said that there was somebody invisibly watching them but they couldn’t see it, they didn’t eat it and that is how religion works. The thought that there is an invisible god watching over them, is supposed to keep them from sinning and when you are brought up with that belief, that god is very real to people.

      I believed that for many years and I prayed to that god for many years and to me he was very real.

      Now I don’t know but it seems inconceivable to me that there is an invisible god that is everywhere watching and judging every single individual on the earth today because if he was there, then why does the devil have complete control over the world?

      Why does a perfect god allow the devil to roam free and cause so much pain and suffering and that perfect god doesn’t do away with that one who is causing all the pain and suffering then?

      Why only answer prayers of certain ones and not others?

      We all know that Jehovah can’t restore limbs, don’t we? That tells me that the god that we are paying to is in our heads.

      We each have our own interpretation of what an all loving creator is and that god would never ask for and demand that I burn up my child to him but that god did ask Abraham to kill and offer up his son to him and Abraham was perfectly willing to do that so Abraham was used to a god that would ask such a thing or Abraham would have said “go away from me Satan” and that is the god that you worship, because Watchtower has convinced you that that god is perfect and all loving, but is he really?

      The Hebrew Bible only describes one god, Yahweh but what about all the other gods that people think created the heavens and the earth. To them, YOU are the atheist because they are just as convinced that only their god made everything.

      It is arrogant to think that because you happen to believe in the god of the Bible that only you are right and all the rest of the people in the world are wrong.

      They also believe they have a relationship with their gods or they wouldn’t be dying for their gods.

  4. Ricardo says:

    @Caroline,
    I don’t wish to be seen as a nit-picker, and I know you have strong feelings about your beliefs, so please don’t feel offended. You say that the devil wasn’t known until the Greek Scriptures. It is correct that the word devil is first used there. But in the Hebrew Scriptures there is reference to Satan. Wouldn’t the Jews have understood who Satan was for the references to be made about him in the Hebrew scriptures? For him to be associated with ‘devil’ in the Greek, the Jews at that time must have understood Satan was a devil and was evil, right?

    • Caroline says:

      Ricardo, Satan means resister. There is no references in the Bible about Satan killing even one person. In Job, it was at God’s permission that God allowed Job’s children to be killed by a windstorm.

      There are so many books written about the Bible by real Bible scholars and Watchtower wants you to only read their books. If you do any real research into the Bible and read about the devil or Satan, you will be overwhelmed with information.

      Watchtower wants it’s people to be like children in believing in Santa Claus. They even warn the rank and file not to get caught up in too much thinking.

      They know full well, that once you start researching into the real history of the Bible by real Bible scholars, that you will probably lose faith in the Bible’s infallibility and thus in Watchtower’s interpretation of the Bible and then in them as God’s only spokesman.

      They want to keep you like a child in that way when it comes to the Bible and to a lot of people who have believed all their lives, it probably is too much to take. I get that.

      Can you imagine the Governing Body actually “waking up”? Either they are as blinded as the rest of us were or they are evil. It’s one or the other but there is so much evidence that the Bible is not inspired that it is overwhelming once you start researching.

  5. Caroline says:

    I would like to add to my last comment. It wasn’t until 1929 (from 1958 Watchtower article page 621 “Baalism Ancient Materialistic Religion of Canaan”) that there was excavations done in Ras Shamra (ancient Ugarit) which is in Arabia today and archaeologists excavated and found in those ruins artifacts that went back 6,000 years and it was in that area at the time of the Bible Abraham that Abraham supposedly lived and in those artifacts, people first learned about the ancient Canaanite gods and those gods described Yahweh perfectly but Watchtower left that part out of course. Even the Canaanite script was very similar to ancient Hebrew Script.

    It was then that they discovered that the ancient Canaanites did sacrifice their children to their gods (many) and their man god was El and remember that Jacob’s name was changed to Israel when he had an encounter with Yahweh or an angel of Yahweh. After Exodus 6:3, many of the names in the Bible incorporate the Yahweh god, like Elijah for one.

    Many of the names in the Bible incorporate the name of El in their names, not just Jacob and when Jacob won that fight with that angel of Jehovah, he named the place Bethel which means house of the god El.

    I could go on and on but by the time that those excavations were uncovered and deciphered, Watchtower had already adopted the name of their religion Jehovah’s Witnesses so they had to stick with it but from then on, scholars knew so much more about the god that the ancient Jews had worshipped and the names in the Bible, show that those ancient Jews were worshiping Canaanite gods and eventually went to just the one god Yahweh and incorporated all the attributes of all those other gods into just the one god Yahweh.

    Whether or not the Governing Body knows about the history of the ancient Canaanites, is up to anybody’s guess but Watchtower has huge libraries of history books and so I do believe that those who run Watchtower and write the articles and research the Bible for the Insight books etc., do know that they are teaching false doctrines and don’t care that so many people are being misled by it.

    I believe that they are truly evil.

    • Factsnotfiction says:

      Wow! Thanks for that Caroline. I have done some research myself along similar lines and knew that the Israelites where basically canaanites who sacrificed first born including children but I had forgotten about the “el” link. Names are important! They tell us so much about origins.

  6. Being called apostate and an Anti-Christ on an apostate site…etc….Toooo funny! ;). Johnny Quests reasoning????… whooz heads in sand?…”Brotherly affliction”… Mark of “true Christianity”!… Yep, enjoy! 😉

  7. GEM says:

    @ Caroline:

    I would encourage you to take a trip to the Upper Nile from Egypt, if you have not done so already.

    Essentially the people were from an Agricultural background and their worship and gods were dependent and based on the fruits of the Nile. Far from being the Satanic gods described by the Jews, captive in Goshen in Lower Egypt, they worshipped images of creation which they perceived gave them the fruits of the earth and contributed to their well being. At the same time they acknowledged an “Almighty” over God who they knew as “Amun”.

    Names were constructed, always in honour of that Universal God. The Sun god for example was AMUN-Rah and Egyptian names like Tut.unkh.AMUN all gave praise to the God of gods.

    As I sat, on the second time, in the amphitheatre at the Temple of Karnak and listened to the enthralling presentation of the Harvest procession of the Pharoah and his Queen, the happiness of the people with all the produce shown in their procession could well be visualised. From that culture around the Nile, emerged many of the Medical, Legal, Taxation, and Religious Practices which we still see today.

    At the end of the presentation, Our guide, a graduate (Moslem) from the University of Cairo, made an astonishing statement. I am not sure whether this was a light bulb moment for me or my “filament” just broke.

    “And of course today, Christians still call on the name of Amun after every prayer.”

    The Jews simply took their “god” in a box, and created an invisible “Almighty” God whose presence was in the Ark of the Covenant.

    Amun had a wife called Amaunet. The “god” of Israel had none. As the Jews conquered on their way to the Promised land, they had periods of favour and disapproval by their “god”, as recorded by the Kings and the Prophets, but essentially the “god” they were trying to adopt did not have a wife. They were monotheistic. (Interestingly many of the explanations of the Trinity attempt to restore that family relationship, with the church of Rome particularly teaching that Mary is the mother of “god”…and since they view Jesus as being part of a godhead… she is exulted to be Almighty God’s wife!)

    The reason I address this point about Amun to you Caroline, is that I have yet to confirm or counter the statement of our Tour guide.

    The concluding words of The Book of Revelation use the word Amen twice. In every Christian church and Kingdom Hall, they call on Amun at the conclusion of every prayer.

    Putin’s Russia is going to have great difficulty destroying the concept of an Invisible god who exacts exclusive devotion. There are no visible icons to tear down. Hitler was unable to remove the faith from people’s hearts and persecution brought increase as others admired their resolve and devotion.

    Best wishes, GEM

    • Caroline says:

      Gem, that sounds like a very interesting trip and maybe some day before I die, I actually will be able to travel out of the United States and visit Egypt. I would love that.

      I can’t remember what video it was, but it suggested that it wasn’t until the Jews came along that people actually offered up their children to a fire god but I don’t know if there is any way of proving that but there’s definitely proof through the Bible that the Jews did it.

      Going way back to Cain and Abel in the Bible, Abel killed and offered up the best of his flock to Jehovah so the killing of animals goes back to the beginning of time (according to the Bible anyway) before Abraham and Noah, but it’s all conjecture to me anyway but I don’t know who started killing and burning their children to any gods, but Judah was perfectly willing to have his daughter-in-law Tamar killed and burned which is way before the Mosaic Law.

      What is interesting in the Insight Books under the topic of Molech on page 424 it says “Numerous authorities regard “Molech” as a title rather than the name of a specific deity, and therefore, the thought has been advanced that the designation “Molech” may have been applied to more than one god. It also says on that page under Molech “[from a root meaning “reign as king” or “king,” but with the vowels of bo-sheth, “shame,” to denote abhorrence] which would go along with what my 1976 Encyclopaedia Britannica says that the Jews could have substituted Moloch for Jehovah at Acts 7:43 because they were so ashamed that their ancestors burnt their children to Jehovah.

      What makes that interesting is that in the King James Bible at Exodus 22:28, one of the commandments given to the Israelites from Jehovah to Moses to the people is “Thou shalt not revile the gods, nor curse the ruler of thy people” but this is how the New World Translation reads at Exodus 22:28: “You must not call down evil upon God, nor curse a chieftain among your people.” Why does the N.W.T. say “God” instead of “gods” like the King James says (printed by the Watchtower by the say)?

      What is interesting too is that in early statues of Moses, he’s depicted with horns coming out of his head, which is similar to the pictures of Moloch.

    • David TODD says:

      Amun to Amen – a bit if a stretch. Looks more like coincidence…..although I’d love it to be true

    • Caroline says:

      Hi Gem. I made a comment but it’s being flagged for some reason, but yes, that would be so much fun to visit Egypt some day before I die. I think your comment was really interesting.

  8. GEM says:

    Yup, mine is marked as Spam, Caroline! Best wishes

    • Caroline says:

      Gem, I couldn’t comment for several days because they were updating so I contacted jwsurvey by email and they unblocked me.

  9. dee2 says:

    Caroline,

    Exodus 22:28 in the NWT reads similarly in the New International Version (NIV), while both the NIV and NWT rendition of Exodus 22:28 read differently from that in the King James Version (KJV).

    It is said that the authors of the most famous English Bible – the King James Version (KJV) of 1611 – did not have access to the earliest Greek manuscripts but the authors of the NIV did (the NIV is nevertheless guilty of modern translation bias).

    Hence there are variations among the various Bible versions depending on which manuscripts they were translated from………so much for God preserving the integrity of the Bible.

    (As an aside, according to the Watchtower, the variations among the manuscripts is proof that the later manuscripts were tampered with; a casualty of this tampering is the removal of God’s name “Jehovah” from the New Testament and parts of the Old Testament, and so the Watchtower has taken it upon itself to restore God’s name in the NWT).

    • I Foster says:

      dee2. The WT tampers with scripture to fit its own theology. They maintain that Christ is a created being, so to reinforce this theology the word ‘other’ has been added to scripture by WT five times in Colossians 1: 16 to 20 inclusive. In old publications of the NWT, the word ‘other’ is in parenthesis to indicate that it has been added by the translator. Now the parenthesis have disappeared and anyone who doesn’t know about this will read these scriptures the way that the blasphemous WT intends them to be read.
      Talk about WT restoring Jehovah’s name to scripture, how about comparing Genesis 28: 13 to Exodus 6: 3 ? In its determination to insert Jehovah wherever it can to its devilish tampering, WT makes Jehovah out to be a liar here.

      • dee2 says:

        I Foster,

        Whether or not the WT creates its own wording of various Bible texts, the fact remains that there are manuscripts of the Bible with different datings. There is a difference in the wording of the text when the manuscripts of different dates are compared.

        As a consequence, there are variations in translation among the various Bible versions depending on which manuscripts they were translated from.

  10. Caroline says:

    @dee2, I was going by an old King James that was printed by the Society but I couldn’t find a date on it when it was published, but if you go to the New World Translation (old one anyway) Reference Bible in Exodus 22:28 there is a footnote is for Elohim which is plural for gods.

    • dee2 says:

      Caroline,

      I did a quick scouring of the internet – there seems to be much discussion and debate about the translation of the Hebrew word “Elohim”.

      Apparently  “Elohim” is a plural noun and can be translated as “gods”.

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