If Satan controls the media, how is Watchtower able to use it so effectively?

If the media is really under Satan's control, how is Watchtower able to use it so freely?
If the media is really under Satan’s control, how is Watchtower able to use it so freely?

“We live in a world in which lies, deceit, and violent anger are commonplace,” warned one 1988 Watchtower. “Satan makes full use of the media to put across this degraded mentality.” (w88 9/1 p.16 par.13)

The above statement is typical of the sweeping anti-media rhetoric Witnesses continue to hear from Watchtower, both in the publications and from the platform. A recent Awake! article slammed the media for its “misleading statements and outright lies about Jehovah’s servants.”

Witnesses are raised to believe that the media belongs to Satan. Anything reported by newspapers, news channels or magazines is therefore not to be trusted. Witnesses are to instead place their implicit trust in Watchtower publications, which promise that “in the new world, Satan’s propaganda media will have been removed.” (w97 4/1 p.17 par.16)

However, by condemning the media to such an outrageous extent, Watchtower has a problem. If the media is truly under Satan’s control, how are they able to use it so freely?

Consider the following paragraph from the latest God’s Kingdom Rules! book, which is being released at the 2014 series of conventions (bold is mine)…

“Coordinators’ Committee – The brothers serving on this committee oversee legal matters as well as the use of the media when it is necessary to convey an accurate picture of our beliefs. They also respond to disasters, outbreaks of persecution, and other emergencies affecting our brotherhood anywhere in the world.” – God’s Kingdom Rules!, page 131

The truth is, the Governing Body has become quite adept at “using” the media to get its message across when the opportunity presents itself.

Anyone who subscribes to Google Alerts for Jehovah’s Witnesses will notice that by far the majority of news articles that get flagged up by Google are positive in favor of the Witnesses. Many are written in such a one-sided way that you would think they were penned by Watchtower’s PR department.

Take, for example, a recent UK article on public witnessing in which my old friend Rick Fenton, the London Bethel’s up-and-coming “publicity officer,” was asked to comment.

Rick Fenton, a publicity officer in the movement, said: “It has been suggested in some media reports public witnesses have replaced the door to door work but it has not.

“It has been going on for the last couple of years on a much larger scale – it was piloted in New York City.”

In central London alone, 1,300 witnesses hand out about 160,000 magazines and 20,000 books in a typical month.

Mr Fenton said although the operation outside stations like Ilford, Redbridge and Wanstead is much smaller – the aim is still the same.

“The literature explains the bible’s message – this is what we are focusing our efforts on,” he said.

“Reading the bible initially is a bit like visiting London for the first time – you need a guide book.

“What the bible says is really practical for life in the 21st century.”

No former Witnesses are interviewed to give their perspectives on possible motives for the public witnessing campaign. Dubious or downright harmful elements of Watchtower literature, such as the stigmatization of higher education or the urging of Witnesses to shun disfellowshipped family members, are not discussed.

Harry Kemble, who wrote the article, seems to be only interested in getting Watchtower’s perspective, and gifting the organization the platform it sorely craves. The Ilford Recorder thus, albeit briefly, lowers itself to becoming just another cog in Watchtower’s PR machinery.

How any Witness can read this article and conclude that “ah, Satan’s media is at it again with its misleading statements and outright lies about Jehovah’s servants,” is beyond me. It should be perfectly obvious to anyone that there is some serious cherry picking afoot.

Watchtower cannot have it both ways. When the media gets it right about the organization and discusses issues such as blood transfusions, shunning or child abuse they cannot cry “foul” and blast everything as “Satan’s media” while simultaneously exploiting the same media as a PR tool when it suits them.

In reality, the media is mostly indifferent to Jehovah’s Witnesses. Three years of effort on my part to convince journalists to show more interest have convinced me that, if anything, the Witnesses are considered a taboo subject. Most investigative journalists seem to prefer to focus on easy targets such as Scientology or the Westboro Baptist Church – cults so small and outrageous that they can safely put the boot in without offending hardly anyone.

All the while Watchtower flourishes in a relative vacuum of media interest, where the media’s paranoia surrounding respect for religious freedoms allows the Governing Body to continue violating those same freedoms for any Witnesses who happen to figure it all out.

 

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Further reading…

65 thoughts on “If Satan controls the media, how is Watchtower able to use it so effectively?

  • July 27, 2014 at 3:03 am
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    “So sick of this ‘bogus religion’.”

    Isn’t that a redundancy?

    I know what you mean, though.

  • July 28, 2014 at 2:39 am
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    In the 1920s, the JWs used to have a slogan ‘Advertise, advertise, advertise the King and His Kingdom’. I wonder if they will bring that back?

  • July 28, 2014 at 3:08 am
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    Rick Fenton’s statement, “Reading the Bible is a bit like
    visiting London for the first time, you need a guide book.”
    This put me in mind of the London cabbies “Knowledge
    test” that they have to pass before being granted a
    licence, it’s very stringent. Described as like “Having a
    map of London imprinted on the brain”.

    Would W,T, Org’s “Bible Knowledge” pass a stringent
    test?… Still looking for Armageddon after 130 years
    and numerous attempts at pin pointing it,? – Sorry
    licence denied.

    Mr, Fenton went on to say. “What the Bible says is
    really practical for life in the 21st, century”, Many
    would agree with that. But can the same be said of
    what the Watchtower says?… In the congregation
    I was in there were 5 suicides and one attempted
    suicide.

  • July 28, 2014 at 6:32 am
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    I have suspected for some time that the tentacles, no doubt invisible, through many major outlets have grown strength from its source. It Kind of smacks something much similar to the cover ups taken place in this country with paedophilia. Recently parliament, prior to that the BBC and a great many secrets that are hidden away or lost in documentation. The Watchtower cult almost seem immune by the same bewitching spell of invisibility that would seem common place these days, as if hidden by the walls of power and influence. Hard to believe and yet Teflon coated is this organisation from all that is thrown at them. To achieve this, if I put on my conspiracy head on can only mean a few things. Money, power, influence, control from others or even other organisations with a vested interest in other matters, that I shudder to ponder on. Its very frustrating, as they are very sick high functioning mind control set up.

  • July 28, 2014 at 12:00 pm
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    Ron,

    I agree that, until recently, the WTBTS has enjoyed good press from the traditional media. The Jehovah’s Witnesses have traditionally been viewed as a bunch of harmless cranks. However, that view has recently been highly challenged by numerous (sadly) child abuse cases.

    This has led to an official investigation by the Charity Commission in the UK. This investigation began back in May of this year. Many folks are assisting them with their enquiries.

    Money does talk, and I should imagine that the WTBTS’ stock portfolio contains shares in many media companies. I do not believe that their influence is any greater than any other religious group, and somewhat less than those who do not prohibit their adherents from voting! Of course, this does not stop the WTBTS using advocates and other bodies such as lobbyists to put their case to law makers. All of these means are perfectly legal, as long as they are declared.

    If anyone has any credible evidence that this is not the case, then I would be very interested to see it. Until then, I for one do not count myself amongst those who sense a conspiracy. The fact is that the WTBTS was able to cover up the numerous cases of child abuse in the past by settling out of court and other dubious means.

    I think that the internet is the place where the news is most definitely out. This medium is only going to get more influential in the future, taking an ever larger share of the news dissemination.

    In short, the WTBTS’ days are numbered.

    Peace be with you

    Excelsior!

  • July 28, 2014 at 12:20 pm
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    There is a huge difference between controlling the media or just making full use of it!
    I was a devout J.W. from 1972-2004 and have nothing to do with the organization any longer, experiencing their abuse first hand. But, let’s at least be fair. Never in the 32 years of being a witness did I read or hear from the platform what you just stated about Satan controlling the media.
    Nice try.

    • July 28, 2014 at 12:30 pm
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      Thanks for visiting Judy and sharing your opinion.

      You might feel more informed on the subject once you have watched the video of mine that accompanies the article, in which Governing Body member Anthony Morris III refers to the media as “Satan’s media.” It’s difficult to imagine how any reasonable person could assume that Morris was referring to a media that can be used by Satan (in the same way as it can be used by the Governing Body) as opposed to a media that is under Satan’s control or ownership. But you are of course welcome to draw whatever conclusion you feel comfortable with.

    • July 28, 2014 at 2:05 pm
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      Hi Judy! My experience has been at least (1) fear of apostates in the media; anything negative about the organization has probably originated with apostates (2) media conveying the “spirit of this world” (which is supposedly ruled by Satan).

      See for example wt08 11/15 pg30 par14: “The Devil is in control of this world. Hence, he controls its media.” http://wol.jw.org/en/wol/d/r1/lp-e/2008844#p15

      Hope this helps. Cheers!

      • July 28, 2014 at 4:11 pm
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        Last weekend I listened to AnonDude2’s judicial committee and a relevant piece came along (the whole hearing is about 3+2 hours or so!) that I wanted to share:

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2ZGMztT6j7A

        Context: the person speaking is “on trial” for apostasy, and defending himself by pointing out that the WT organization has been a member of the UN. It seems the elders in this case were not aware and respond hostile, trying to discredit his sources.

        At 40 seconds one elder says: “where did you think they came from, Ethan?” insinuating that a (copied) letter from the WTS was written by apostates

        At 3:40, about the UK guardian, another elder says “you pulled this off a website, and took it as factual?”

        At 4:04, he continues “Is it really factual what you’re presenting to us, that’s all I’m asking.” Kinda obvious if someone presents three pieces of information to substantiate a claim that they don’t think it’s slander/nonsense.

        A warning though, in the -B parts he comments on the -A parts (the committee recordings), but he has a big ego and likes himself talk. I puke on the -B parts, but the -A parts are brilliant. It’s obvious he likes to make it known he knows his facts, but on the whole it’s a great defense.

  • July 28, 2014 at 3:52 pm
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    Ron
    It does seem amazing that the squeaky clean JWs appear to escape bad press.
    I remember the BBC Panorama programme on child abuse within the organisation. At the time I was still an active witness and the following day we were expecting repercussions in the field ministry – Nothing! Apparently nobody had been interested enough to watch it. I seem to recall that the other channels had something more mind blowing for ordinary folks; Eastenders or the like.
    Satan controls the media? Well they do say that the devil looks after his own!
    It does appear that unless ‘celebrity’ is involved the media and the public are not really interested.
    I hope with all my heart that things will change and that the whitewashed walls will one day fall.

  • July 30, 2014 at 9:01 am
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    @moegreene is an anonymous twitter poster who attacks trinitarians by calling them names, lying about the character of people he does not personally know and otherwise attempting to alienate opposers from JWs. The end result is that opposers have no interest in any real dialog or receiving information from any JW anywhere. This person claims to have been involved in ‘ministry’ for 25 years, but the image they portray online seriously contradicts anything I’ve ever read about what JW’s supposedly stand for. This is the only exposure I’ve ever had to the JW religion and I can tell you I will never believe anything I read or hear except the negative because this tweeter operates in such a manner as to discredit any work the JW religion does. Because the JW does not stop him, most of us will continue to believe the JW leadership condones these tactics. I’m glad my first exposure to the JW religion has been this anonymous troll because it insures I will never be deceived by any JW anywhere. The problems caused by social media for the JW might be legion.

  • July 30, 2014 at 11:27 pm
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    “When the media gets it right about Jehovah’s Witnesses…” In other words when it chooses to support your opinion, which is not biased at all is it? What does the media have to gain by writing a favourable article about JWs? You obviously do not like the fact that there are many laudable things about JWs, and others, not so biased as some, notice it and write articles which are subsequently published in newspapers about it.

    • July 31, 2014 at 12:09 am
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      Hello Greg. Welcome to JWsurvey. I commend you for being brave enough to disobey your leaders by offering your comments on this blog.

      My words about “when the media gets it right” are hopefully self-explanatory. Either the Jehovah’s Witness religion is true, or it isn’t. If it is NOT true, then Watchtower is inflicting unimaginable harm on people (child abuse mishandling, deaths from refusing blood transfusions, shunning) for no reason at all. If it IS true, then I’m afraid you have your work cut out. You need to show me and everyone on this site undeniable evidence that Jesus Christ ‘invisibly’ visited Earth between 1914 and 1919 and selected Joseph Rutherford and his associates as sole representatives of his earthly organization. If you can prove this, you then have to prove that this “mantle” of power was passed on by means of some form of apostolic succession to subsequent directors of the Watch Tower Society, and thereafter to whoever happened to be chosen to serve on the Governing Body. Best of luck trying to prove all that, but if you succeed in doing so you will be in a league of your own. Of course, you could always retort that all those things really did happen but it is merely a matter of “faith” that we believe them, in which case – what makes your religion different from any other religion in believing the fantastic claims of your leaders without any need for evidence?

  • July 31, 2014 at 2:47 am
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    There is a reformation coming with Jehovah’s Witnesses. The name Watchtower will be snuffed out. The website JW.org will be heavily promoted. Door to door witnessing will consist of smart media devices and people being able to download books and magazines. Paper form magazines will be a thing of the past. One thing that won’t change is the usual “we have the only true religion” attitude, no blood, shunning, and pedofilia cases. More and more young people will leave. The Internet will be the downfall of Watchtower. Nice try Watchtower, but all those old scans are easily acessable online. Anyone ever notice that the cd-rom library only has the Awake magazines only back as far as 1970??? My guess is, they don’t want people to see the lies about 1975 and the generation teaching.

  • July 31, 2014 at 6:45 am
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    @Greg Smith. I might be wrong but when I see articles in newspapers about Jehovah’s Witnesses, it’s usually about an assembly that’s taking place in a city and the comments are how nicely dressed and polite they are. Do the comments involve how interesting and true the talks are? That’s what the assemblies are all about aren’t they, not how nicely dressed they are and polite. Nobody is going to argue that Witnesses dress nicely and are polite. Nobody is going to argue about how nice Witnesses are at assemblies either.

    If you watch some of Cedar’s videos, you will see that nobody is saying that there aren’t some good things about being a Witness. We just don’t like being lied to. Most Jehovah’s Witnesses are blind to the fact that they are being lied to. They don’t believe the Society would lie to them because they have been brainwashed into thinking Jehovah is directing the Organization but in reality, Jehovah has nothing to do with it and that is a provable fact by examining the literature that was being printed and distributed by the Society between the years of 1914-1918 and afterwards.

    The Watchtower is a business about making money and using innocent, gullible people to sell their literature from door to door. Witnesses are brainwashed into thinking that it’s EVIL to look at anything other than Watchtower publications and that everything else is from the devil, but they are being taken advantage of and don’t realize it. Hopefully a site like Cedar’s, will help people to see the lies and wake up from their hypnotic state and by one person at a time, telling another person, telling another person will help them to wake up and see how they are wasting their one and only precious life, worshipping false gods, called the Governing Body.

    The saddest thing that I see, is family after family being torn apart because of somebody in their family being shunned because of being disfellowshipped. It destroys any real “happiness” a family can have, no matter how much they try and pretend to the world it doesn’t affect them.

    There is so much depression in the Organization. That must come to an end and hopefully more and more people will help that depression to come to an end but it will only happen when the Watchtower either comes clean with their lies and deceptions and admits their mistakes or when everyone stops supporting them with their time and money and the Watchtower will be forced to close down.

    Jim and Tammy Faye Baker’s empire came to an end and they had more followers than the Watchtower so hopefully someday soon, the same fate will befall the Watchtower.

    We who have been brave enough to examine the real history of the Organization, know 100% that Jehovah’s Witnesses, as a whole, are involved with an evil, lying, wicked organization and don’t know it but are too afraid to find out for themselves and we on this site have nothing but pity for those people. It would be so wonderful to see these people being able to welcome back into their fold, all these people who have been torn away from them from being disfellowshipped. They would do that in an instant, if the Society gave them permission to do it. They are shunning their closest friends and family members because the Society makes it mandatory to do it, not because it’s their choice. That is a power that God never gave to the Society but they took that power to force everyone to keep silent. That makes the Society an evil, Satanic cult.

  • July 31, 2014 at 7:20 am
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    Greg Smith,

    What percentage of “laudable things” cancels out the child abuse and domestic abuse cover ups? The media has covered some recent cases in the UK. Have you read these reports? Are they biased? Are they factually inaccurate?

    Sadly, they are not.

    All the “laudable things” that you could think of are being done by other people as well. There is nothing unique to the Jehovah’s Witnesses about having a desire to help one’s fellow men. Indeed, REAL charities look after everyone, not just fellow believers as your religion does. If you have evidence to the contrary then by all means share it with us.

    Sir, you are trying to defend an organisation that would drop you like a hot potato if you ever doubted them or disobeyed them. You have been deceived into thinking that the GB have been chosen by Jesus to lead. There is no evidence for this assertion whatsoever. Indeed, there is a large amount of evidence that the GB are responsible for very serious crimes.

    Peace be with you

    Excelsior!

  • July 31, 2014 at 11:36 am
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    GTo illustrate the “Satan phobia” that affects J,W’s…. My Brother
    In Law, has for 9 years provided a voluntary service to a hospital
    In Wiltshire. Exclusively in the children’s wards. His objective is
    to try to cheer the kids up and provide a distraction from their
    ordeal by doing a few conjuring tricks for them. The hospital
    staff have appreciated his efforts especially when they’ve had a
    tearful child on their hands.

    Two weeks ago, due to failing health he “reluctantly” decided to
    retire. On his very last day he went to the bed of a young boy
    who was being visited by his mother. She identified herself as
    a J,W, and refused to allow the conjuring , Saying it was the
    Devil’s work. The young lad, ( I was told) bowed his head.
    Was it embarrassment, shame, sadness, from being denied
    what the other children were enjoying ,? Anyway he got
    a bar of chocolate instead.

    How sad, Big smiles at the assemblies but inside a lot of guilt,
    a lot fear. Minds so closed down that almost anything outside
    of their organization is a threat to their spirituality.

  • July 31, 2014 at 4:48 pm
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    Ted –
    What a sad story.
    Yes, the JWs are obsessed with ‘Satan phobia’.
    When I woke up to the real truth and realised I had been working for the ‘wrong side’ all those years it came as quite a shock. But amazingly the relief I and my husband felt was like a great weight being lifted off our shoulders.
    The yoke of tyranny had been broken.
    Jesus yoke, on the other hand, is kindly and light. He loved children by all accounts, and must have delighted in their laughter. How very sad that the little Jehovah’s Witnesses are kept away from such innocent fun. This, of course, can lead to unhappiness, self denial and unfortunately in some cases, suicide.
    WAKE UP, GREG. Check out the real history of JWs. No need to go to ‘apostate’ websites. Just type Charles Taze Russell into Google and see what you come up with. Then research the true date for the destruction of Jerusalem from historical sources (Assyrian & Babylonian Chronicles for example). These are UNBIASED sources.
    Go on, dare to be different – see what you can find.
    Remember, Oppose the Devil and he will flee from you.

  • July 31, 2014 at 7:14 pm
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    @ Ted

    The Jehovah’s Witness GB do a magic trick at every assembly. They open their mouths and make thousands of brains disappear.

  • August 1, 2014 at 2:56 am
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    Tiger – Very good!
    They are also excellent at appearing as angels of light, concealing real truth and making history disappear.
    True masters of deception, just like their father!

  • August 1, 2014 at 3:53 am
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    To add to Bad Penny’s advice to Greg Smith: It’s real easy to disprove 607 as the destruction of Jerusalem by using just the Watchtower. Nobody argues the Babylon fell in 539, right? The Insight book Vol. 2 page 480 under Nebuchadnezzer says he ruled 43 years. The 1965 Watchtower Jan. 1, pg 29 says Nebuchadnezzer was succeeded by Evil-Merodach who ruled 2 years and he was succeeded by Neriglassar who ruled 4 years who was succeeded by Labish-Marduk who ruled less than 1 year who was succeeded by Nabonidus who ruled 17 years (Insight Vol. 2, pg. 457) till Babylon fell in 539. Add 43 (Nebuchadnezzer), 2 years (Evil-Merodach), 4 years (Neriglassar), 1 year (Labish-Marduk) 17 years (Nabonidus) and you get 67 years. Add 67 to 539 and you get 606. 2nd Kings 25: 8-9 says that Nebuchadnezzer destroyed Jerusalem in his 19th year. Subtract 19 from 606 and you get 586. Face it. The Society are a bunch of stinking liars. Do you want to serve a bunch of stinking liars? I sure don’t.

  • August 1, 2014 at 11:15 am
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    Folks,

    Let’s look at this from a secular position for a moment. Mr Smith has made a comment, to the tune that Jehovah’s Witnesses have done some good. He is right that individual JWs have done good things. I like to believe that they have done those good things because they have trained their consciences to recognise that other people are important too.

    That is the basis for Jesus’ teachings – that other people matter too.

    I gave Greg Smith a hard time in my previous comment. My point was valid, but the tone could have been better. For that, Mr Smith, I apologise. I, like many posters on here, are furious with the Governing Body and the other leaders of the WTBTS. We are livid that children have been abused and their welfare and access to justice ignored. Sometimes, that anger can spill out in a less than diplomatic phrase or too. Please forgive us, we are always human.

    I’m not trying to attack you, Greg. I don’t know you and I have no right to judge you. We are all responsible for what we decide to do. I would intreat you to research what is happening in the WTBTS. You need to be sure that what they tell you is right.

    Peace be with you

    Excelsior!

  • August 3, 2014 at 1:23 am
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    ….adding to Cedars comment to Greg about having to prove that Jesus came to the earth between 1914-1918 and chose the Watchtower as his sole representative spokesman on earth, you will have to disprove what Joseph Rutherford said in his book Light Vol. 1, 1930 on page 194 “All of the Lord’s people looked forward to 1914 with joyful expectation. When that time came and passed there was much disappointment, chagrin and mourning and the Lord’s people were greatly in reproach. They were ridiculed by the clergy and their allies in particular, and pointed to with scorn, because they had said so much about 1914, and what would come to pass, and their ‘prophecies’ had not been fulfilled.”

    But this is what the January 15, 2014 Study article said about the same time period on page 28 “Yet, anointed Christians had keenly been anticipating 1914 as the end of the Gentile Times, or “appointed times of the nations.” (Luke 21:24) They were not completely sure about what would happen. Still, they knew that 1914 would mark a turning point regarding divine rulership. As soon as they discerned the fulfillment of Bible prophecy, they boldly declared to others that God’s had begun.”

    These 2 statements say opposite things. The Watchtower likes to “rewrite” the history of the Organization so it can claim that it’s God’s sole spokesman on earth but that’s all it is, is a claim. If you were going to spend a lot of money on a car that “claimed” it got 50 miles per gallon of gas, wouldn’t you want to make sure it lived up to it’s claim before forking out a lot of money? All the Society does is “claim” to be God’s spokesman but can’t back it up with any evidence. Jehovah’s Witnesses are “spending” the little time they have on earth, which is worth a whole lot more than the money spent on a car, supporting a religion that makes false prophesies and then lies about it. If God had actually chosen the Watchtower as his sole spokesman on earth, don’t you think then that their prophecies would have come true? Why would he let his organization be humiliated like that? It doesn’t make any sense at all.

    The Bible says at Revelation 21:8, liars will be thrown in the lake of fire, or the 2nd death and the first thing that Jesus said would mark a person who didn’t “know” Jesus would be that they would “prophecy” in his name at Mathew 7:22?

    If anyone can support the claim that God chose the Watchtower organization as his spokesman between 1914-1918, I’d like to see it so I don’t feel as if I and a whole bunch of other people, haven’t wasted our lives, supporting a lie. Please come forward with that evidence.

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