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JW.ORG Portrays a Resigning Witness – A man now wearing street clothes

The FAQ section on JW.org has added a new featured post: “Can a Person Resign From Being One of Jehovah’s Witnesses?” In this NEW article dated June 9th 2016, the Watchtower gives their official explanation of how to handle matters when a person no longer wants to be one of Jehovah’s Witnesses.

It is, in my opinion, one of the most calculated, misleading and dishonest articles recently released on their website. The level of deliberate deceit on display is both appalling and astonishing.

Follow along with me as I examine this FAQ article section-by-section, explaining in detail how it is both deceptive and misleading!

Lies of Omission

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JW.ORG Asks: Can you Resign?

The FAQ presents itself as answering two questions. The first is:

Can a Person Resign From Being One of Jehovah’s Witnesses?

It clearly targets members of both the public and the media, not rank-and-file Jehovah’s Witnesses (JW’s), and describes what happens when members leave the religion. The actual members of the organization already know what happens when they resign from the faith. For instance, this summer, JW’s are subjected to an extended campaign of shunning training and loyalty indoctrination.

It is vital to keep the following fact in mind. This FAQ is intended for someone who does not know the details about Watchtower’s policies. Therefore, the printed words are just as important as the words omitted or danced around.

The FAQ responds to the question as follows. The first part says:

Yes. A person can resign from our organization in two ways:

By formal request. Either orally or in writing, a person can state his decision that he no longer wants to be known as one of Jehovah’s Witnesses.
By action. A person can take an action that places him outside our worldwide brotherhood. (1 Peter 5:9) For example, he might join another religion and make known his intention to remain part of it.—1 John 2:19.

And…what happens next?

What happens when someone does this?

Hello?

FAQ?

What happens?

Silence.

This part of the FAQ says nothing whatsoever about the implications for a person undertaking the above steps. It makes no mention at all of what the penalty would be.

Why is that important?

It’s a deliberate lie of omission.

Wikipedia defines a lie of omission as:

Also known as a continuing misrepresentation, a lie by omission occurs when an important fact is left out in order to foster a misconception. Lying by omission includes failures to correct pre-existing misconceptions.

What important fact has been left out? What misconception might this article deliberately be hoping to instill in a reader?

Well, if you were reading this FAQ with no deeper knowledge of Jehovah’s Witnesses (which is the prime and deliberate audience for a write-up such as this) you might well walk away with the impression that such a person can carry on their life without any real interruption.

You would have no idea that the Witness family and friends of this person were now required to completely shun such an individual. Watchtower even recently went so far as to instruct parents to throw mature children out of the family home should one become disfellowshipped, and to not even answer the phone when they call. Disfellowshipping is an involuntary removal due to perceived “sin”, but Watchtower commands Witnesses to treat disassociated, or resigned ones, ones in an identical manner to disfellowshipped ones. See Watchtower Study edition Feb 2011 article Do You Hate Lawlessness. Below are two relevant paragraphs:

15 Do we share Jesus’ view of those who have become set in their lawless course? We need to give thought to these questions: ‘Would I choose to associate regularly with someone who has been disfellowshipped or who has disassociated himself from the Christian congregation? What if that one is a close relative who no longer lives at home?’ Such a situation can be a real test of our love of righteousness and of our loyalty to God.

18 If you face a similar situation, please remember that Jehovah sympathizes with you. By cutting off contact with the disfellowshipped or disassociated one, you are showing that you hate the attitudes and actions that led to that outcome. However, you are also showing that you love the wrongdoer enough to do what is best for him or her. Your loyalty to Jehovah may increase the likelihood that the disciplined one will repent and return to Jehovah.

Clearly, there is a lie of omission, designed to craft a misleading impression in the minds of the general public, as well as any interested media organizations.

But it gets worse!

The next part of the FAQ contains, not only an attempt to casually hide an embarrassing truth with sleight of hand, but an outright lie.

Misleading or Dissembling Lies

Wikipedia defines a misleading or dissembling lie as:

A misleading statement is one where there is no outright lie, but still retains the purpose of getting someone to believe in an untruth.

The next question in the FAQ is:

What if a person no longer preaches or attends your meetings? Do you view that person as having resigned?

Now, in last years Australian Royal Commission hearings, where the Child Abuse policies of Jehovah’s Witnesses came under devastating scrutiny, this issue arose during the questioning of Governing Body Member Geoffrey Jackson by Senior Council for the Commission Angus Stewart.

It was put to Jackson that if a survivor of child abuse felt so let down by the Organization’s discredited policies (see the full damning report here) that they wished to leave the religion, they had no way of doing so without being shunned by their family. Remember, the two official options for leaving discussed in the FAQ both result in shunning.

What followed was a painful display of Jackson blatantly trying to misdirect the Royal Commission. He implied that someone who wanted to leave could simply stop attending meetings and it would be fine. He gave the impression that they would be viewed as having left or faded, and there would be no shunning.

Angus Stewart, who had clearly done his research into Watchtower’s policies, stood his ground on this point, and using various scenarios he demonstrated that Watchtower viewed a person who simply stopped attending meetings, but did not “disassociate” using the two above methods, as still a Witness, and thus subject to Watchtower’s rules and discipline. If such a person was caught violating any of their vast and controlling web of laws, they would be disfellowshipped or considered disassociated, and then shunned.

Watch the full video footage below and decide for yourself the impression that Jackson is trying to give on this issue prior to being cross-examined by Stewart.

Now, does the FAQ back up what Governing Body member Geoffrey Jackson initially claimed under oath, before he started wriggling under cross-examination? Or does it back up Senior Council for the Royal Commission Angus Stewart?

What if a person no longer preaches or attends your meetings? Do you view that person as having resigned?

In answer to this, this FAQ states (bold is mine)

No, we do not. Resigning, or disassociating oneself, is different from becoming weak in faith.

This FAQ backs Stewart, not the Governing Body member who was giving testimony under oath. Was Jackson mistaken, misdirecting, incompetent or lying?

I will leave that to you.

The FAQ answer continues:

Often, those who for a time slow down or stop in their worship have not abandoned their faith but are suffering from discouragement. Rather than shunning such ones, we try to give them consolation and support. (1 Thessalonians 5:14; Jude 22) If the person wants help, congregation elders take the lead in providing spiritual assistance.—Galatians 6:1; 1 Peter 5:1-3.

Hmm.

Did you spot it?

Reading through quickly, you might have missed it. (bold is mine)

Often, those who for a time slow down or stop in their worship have not abandoned their faith but are suffering from discouragement. Rather than shunning such ones, we try to give them consolation and support. (1 Thessalonians 5:14; Jude 22) If the person wants help, congregation elders take the lead in providing spiritual assistance.—Galatians 6:1; 1 Peter 5:1-3.

See how carefully they slipped that in? You might have missed it if you were just scanning through. Additionally, the context is unclear about how shunning is to be interpreted in this text. If someone told me that Witnesses shun members that leave their faith, and then I came to this FAQ, I could easily interpret that sentence as meaning “we don’t shun such ones.”

Remember, there is no mention in the first part of the FAQ that disassociation involves shunning. A person without any knowledge of Witness doctrine, could come away thinking that there was no shunning for the disassociated ones, and possibly no shunning at all.

Now, there IS a hypertext link on the word “shunning.” This takes you to another FAQ here.

More Lies of Omission and Misdirection

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JW.ORG Addresses Shunning – or do they?

You have to notice the hyperlink and click on it to get this extra detail; the reader has to take additional time and effort to get this information. Even a quick scan of the article may not reveal it. But let’s click on it and examine the second FAQ on shunning.

I am going to reproduce the entire second FAQ on shunning below:

Those who were baptized as Jehovah’s Witnesses but no longer preach to others, perhaps even drifting away from association with fellow believers, are not shunned. In fact, we reach out to them and try to rekindle their spiritual interest.

We do not automatically disfellowship someone who commits a serious sin. If, however, a baptized Witness makes a practice of breaking the Bible’s moral code and does not repent, he or she will be shunned or disfellowshipped. The Bible clearly states: “Remove the wicked man from among yourselves.”—1 Corinthians 5:13.

What of a man who is disfellowshipped but whose wife and children are still Jehovah’s Witnesses? The religious ties he had with his family change, but blood ties remain. The marriage relationship and normal family affections and dealings continue.

Disfellowshipped individuals may attend our religious services. If they wish, they may also receive spiritual counsel from congregation elders. The goal is to help each individual once more to qualify to be one of Jehovah’s Witnesses. Disfellowshipped people who reject improper conduct and demonstrate a sincere desire to live by the Bible’s standards are always welcome to become members of the congregation again.

However, the elders are not authorized to coerce or pressure someone to remain as one of Jehovah’s Witnesses. Each person makes his own choice regarding religion. (Joshua 24:15) We believe that those who worship God must do so willingly, from the heart.—Psalm 110:3; Matthew 22:37.

What’s the first thing you notice? The article on shunning admits that it happens, but only in the context of disfellowshipping.  There is no mention that a disassociated one will be shunned.

Thus, a person, with no prior knowledge of the Witnesses that reads the first FAQ, and follows the reference to the second, will still have no information telling them that a disassociated one will be shunned.

Again, this is a deliberate lie of omission. Watchtower is trying to craft the impression that people are free to leave the religion of their own accord, with no penalty when the exact opposite is true.

What else do you notice? A person reading this will be thinking, “What if a family member is disfellowshipped?”

What scenario does the FAQ present?

What of a man who is disfellowshipped but whose wife and children are still Jehovah’s Witnesses? The religious ties he had with his family change, but blood ties remain. The marriage relationship and normal family affections and dealings continue.

Again, this is a lie of omission, and of misdirection. This scenario only holds true if the father is living at home with his wife or children. If the children grow and leave the family home, or the wife separates from her husband and takes her children with her they are then indeed required to shun him as if he was dead. If children are living outside the home and are disfellowshipped, siblings and parents are required to shun them as if they were dead. And what holds for the disfellowshipped holds for disassociated. By cherry-picking its scenario, and limiting disclosure of information, Watchtower has carefully presented a sanitized version of its shunning policy that simply is not true.

But worst of all is the way that both the first and second FAQ ends; we run crunching into what is nothing less than a barefaced lie.

Barefaced Lies

Wikipedia defines a barefaced lie as

A barefaced (or bald-faced) lie is one that is obviously a lie to those hearing it.

Both FAQ’s end with the following paragraph.

However, the elders are not authorized to coerce or pressure someone to remain as one of Jehovah’s Witnesses. Each person makes his own choice regarding religion. (Joshua 24:15) We believe that those who worship God must do so willingly, from the heart.—Psalm 110:3; Matthew 22:37.

There is no pressure.

Yes, if the person no longer wishes to remain one of Jehovah’s Witnesses, they will never see their friends or family again.

But there is no pressure, you see.

The elders sit there pointing full loaded shun-guns at the individual, ready to fire if they decide to leave.

But there is no coercion. No pressure. We believe you must serve God willingly. It’s just that if you don’t choose to stay, your family and friends will never be allowed to see you again.

Dear JW.org: I think you need to look up the definition of the words pressure and coercion. I don’t think they mean what you think they mean.

pressure |ˈprɛʃənoun [ mass noun ] the use of persuasion or intimidation to make someone do something:backbenchers put pressure on the government to provide safeguards | [ count noun ] :  the many pressures on girls to worry about their looks.

coercion |kəʊˈəːʃ(ə)nnoun [ mass noun ] the action or practice of persuading someone to do something by using force or threats: it wasn’t slavery because no coercion was used.

Even Watchtower’s own literature and videos state that a big part of the reason for shunning is to cause such deep emotional trauma to the person who left that they feel obligated to return to the organization.

See, for example, the video (below) that will be played to all of Jehovah’s Witnesses worldwide this year. What how the shunned person admits that the emotional pressure from being cut off from her family was part of what brought her back.

Also, notice this paragraph from the June 2013 Study Edition of the Watchtower which explicitly acknowledges that emotional blackmail is a key part of the shunning process.

17 Disfellowshipping is another type of discipline from Jehovah. It protects the congregation from a bad influence and can play a role in the sinner’s recovery. (1 Cor. 5:6, 7, 11) Robert was disfellowshipped for nearly 16 years, during which time his parents and siblings firmly and loyally applied the direction in God’s Word to quit mixing in company with wrongdoers, not even greeting such ones. Robert has been reinstated for some years now and is progressing well spiritually. When asked what moved him to return to Jehovah and His people after such a long time, he replied that the stand that his family took affected him. “Had my family associated with me even a little, say to check up on me, that small dose of association would have satisfied me and likely not allowed my desire for association to be a motivating factor to return to God.”

Or this paragraph from the Feb 2016 Study Edition of the Watchtower magazine, which not only proudly presents such emotional blackmail as a positive thing, but even blames the shunning victim for it.

A conflict of loyalties may arise when a close relative is disfellowshipped. For example, a sister named Anne [1] received a telephone call from her disfellowshipped mother. The mother wanted to visit Anne because she felt pained by her isolation from the family. Anne was deeply distressed by the plea and promised to reply by letter. Before writing, she reviewed Bible principles. (1 Cor. 5:11; 2 John 9-11) Anne wrote and kindly reminded her mother that she had cut herself off from the family by her wrongdoing and unrepentant attitude. “The only way you can relieve your pain is by returning to Jehovah,” Anne wrote.—Jas. 4:8.

So, for Watchtower to blatantly instruct its followers to engage in traumatizing emotional blackmail of those who leave, whilst simultaneously having the gall to state in its FAQ… (bold is mine)

However, the elders are not authorized to coerce or pressure someone to remain as one of Jehovah’s Witnesses. Each person makes his own choice regarding religion. (Joshua 24:15) We believe that those who worship God must do so willingly, from the heart.—Psalm 110:3; Matthew 22:37.

…is nothing less than a bare-faced lie.

A direct, blatant, calculated lie, and one that anyone with any knowledge of its doctrines and teachings can easily spot it as such.

I cannot recall the last time I saw posted on their website such a blatant, disgusting and calculated attempt to mislead the general public and the media as to its practice of disassociation, and its use of shunning to place coercion upon those who leave.

The Governing Body should be ashamed.

I call upon Watchtower to either amend the FAQ to reflect the reality of their polices, or to remove the FAQ altogether.

One last point: If shunning is Scriptural and the Governing Body is so proud to carry out God’s perceived command, why are they so desperate to lie about it and hide it from the public?

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188 thoughts on “NEWS BULLETIN: JW.ORG Asks: Can a Person Resign From Being One of Jehovah’s Witnesses?

  • June 11, 2016 at 2:10 pm
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    After not attending meetings for over a year I went to pick up my husband when he got off the cong coach after attending convention. About 30 bros and sis got off the coach and only one of them said hello to me!! Another occasion my husband and I were invited to the evening celebration of a jw wedding. The groom was employed by my husband. I sat alone all night. Only 2 people sat and chatted to me the rest avoided eye contact and some even ignored me when I tried to make conversation with them. Says it all really…

    • June 11, 2016 at 4:28 pm
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      Btw…I’m not disfellowshipped. I haven’t had a judicial or been in trouble particularly. I just stopped going to meetings.

      • June 11, 2016 at 5:54 pm
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        I’m not disfellowshipped or disassociated, but I stopped attended meetings about 2 years ago. Anyway, my wife was invited to a witness wedding and I wasn’t. Because we are married and the bride knows me well, I feel I should have been invited. My wife made a lame excuse saying that she probably felt I would have said no. I told my wife that I should make that decision and not her. Also, my wife should have approached the bride and asked if I could come. My wife, I feel, should have asked me how it would make me feel going to a wedding without her husband. I didn’t say anything about that, but she should either have asked me or not gone. Also, I’ve been wearing a beard for a while now, so maybe the bride didn’t want me there because of it, in addition to not attending meetings. FYI— my wife has been invited to all my “worldly” coworkers’ weddings, even the lesbian wedding. “Worldly” people have more sense.

        • June 11, 2016 at 7:35 pm
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          There is new direction on beards in the sept watchtower: article entitled “does your style of dress glorify Jehovah”

          Paragraph 17. It seems I cannot copy the paragraph but it says that if it is culturally acceptable as long as it is clean and well kept it would not be an issue.

          • June 12, 2016 at 2:09 am
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            Regarding beards: is anyone else especially annoyed by the fact that beards were viewed as a sign someone was weak or rebellious for so long?

            And now they’re just like: yeah. No biggie.*

            You could certainly wear one, but don’t expect to have ANY privileges or advance.

            I was always told that refusal to shave, when everyone else did, was evidence of having the wrong attitude – an unnecessarily haughty and independent spirit.

            This always seemed like it was going far beyond the scope and spirit and intent of the scriptures.

            And it really just boiled down to more man made rules.

            I’m a woman. I don’t have to shave, but this always stuck in my craw. From early childhood.

            Because as a child, I paid lots of attention to the pictures – many of which showed Jesus with a beard.

            Obvious question: why are Jesus and his apostles frequently depicted with full beards, but when a brother wants to grow one, it’s not ok?

            Yes, dress and grooming was different, but not the biology that makes you grow hair!

            Daily.

            And it was the same,’you can, but you shouldn’t’ nonsense/bs.

            All still without a good reason why or why not.

            Even as a child I knew that THEY knew the rule was completely unsupported by the scriptures.

            Even in principle to say that beards are always associated with undesirables.

            Who? Who thinks that?

            It would stumble people in our ministry.

            Really? More than knocking on their door too early in the morning on the one day they get to sleep in?

            Yes. It would be the beard they would focus on.

            Beards ARE sometimes unkempt, and sometimes outrageous to the point they are distracting.

            So are hairstyles and clothes. Stop wearing those as well?

            The logic behind the blanket ban was always so faulty.

            Yet another one of those questions no one could ever give me a satisfying answer to.

            I never believed Jehovah was against beards. And I never understood why more people didn’t question it.

            *Don’t get me wrong. I think they should have made the correction/adjustment. The part that annoys me is that they were stuck on it for so long when it should never have been an issue in the first place.

            So typical.

          • June 12, 2016 at 6:11 am
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            There was actually a similar article that said something to that extent about beards some 10 or so years ago (I’ll have to go back and find the reference). It did little to change the attitude toward them in the local congregations in my area (United States). We will have to see if this one makes any difference.

            WS

          • June 12, 2016 at 11:04 am
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            Yes, WS, the prejudice against them seems firmly entrenched. Times when we have gone for long stretches without meeting attendance and field service my husband always starts growing a beard, and I love it!

            I’m always disappointed when he goes back to shaving.

  • June 11, 2016 at 2:27 pm
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    Obviously as ex JWs we know only too well how the org treats anyone who has left the org and dares to tell others why they left. So now we need to double our efforts and let people know the true situation. Share on forums and tell those we meet, family and friends, even local papers. We need to speak out about it because as has been said the public or media often do not know how things really work in the org.

    • June 12, 2016 at 10:34 am
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      @alanv – the official policy versus the practice is sometimes not as “ideal” as Watchtower would like it to be. Families that are strong will observe shunning spiritually–maybe not exchanging comments on religion or differences of religious views–but not socially. Blood will always be blood, but dogma changes.

      In fact, some would say the angst some feel over shunning was not their experience–perhaps a mild form of shunning as noted, but generally the same respect and tact given to any stranger on the street.

      Plus, as someone noted the stupidity on beard policies, it also seemed stupid that some sheep, or goat, who was “weak” and stumbling was pushed out of the herd, left for the wolves to devour. Even animals will shelter the weak and young of the herd from predators.

      And, I keep hearing JW’s excuses, well they only expel persons who refused help or weren’t applying “counsel given” [no professional therapy for a domestic abuser, alcoholic, substance addict, or philanderer?] which is same stale verses and literature quotes yet not solid guidance on assistance overcoming addictions or treatment/diagnoses for mental health issues.

      And, adding to stupidity is no avenue for “a dialogue” of questions. Ask a doctrinal question of a local elder and you get quoted literature that you’ve already read, and as the GB and HQ reveals how it reaches doctrinal conclusions, there really isn’t a broad discussion of counterpoints to a final adoption of a doctrine, or in JW parlance “viewpoint”. More than likely it’s because individuals writing the literature, nor those using and distributing the literature, don’t know how to think through and address scriptural challenges and contradictions to an adopted viewpoint.

      And, with the increasing adoption of video lectures and presentations with no feedback loop or outlet for asking probing questions, even challenger questions, the group presents itself with a “take it, or leave it” scenario–even if you are raised in it.

      • June 12, 2016 at 11:33 am
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        @ anonymous, I agree. Part of what finally pushed me out was this approach to reasonable questions.

        I’ve asked all manner of questions that were in ‘the Bible doesn’t say’ territory my entire life. And I have always gotten that response.

        Read appropriate articles. Pray. Trust in Jehovah and wait on him. And does it affect your ability to serve him faithfully and keep his commands now? No, then ignore it and increase your kingdom service, focus on helping others, not yourself.

        But I was fed up for good when no one could give me satisfying answers regarding my husband’s change in hope and my feelings on the matter.

        It was exactly as you said, I was repeatedly directed to read the same stale articles I had already researched myself and found no comfort or logic.

        How about that?

        Even if any of it made sense or rang true and seemed plausible and well-reasoned and practical, I might have tried harder to accept it even if I didn’t like it on a personal level.

        But I was instructed to read articles and watch videos and pray. And if I didn’t feel better, I was instructed to keep doing so until I did feel better.

        Who remembers the definition of insanity?

        Don’t everyone raise your hands all at once!

        I really hate the direction the organization is headed, but I still love the people I have always loved.

        That part is so hard for me.

  • June 11, 2016 at 2:31 pm
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    Dissection of video and shunning to the core..Wow, did you hit everything ( I am going through ) in such detail it removes the pompous cloak of superiority through nobility that WT drapes like a shield of armor over them… sickening really.
    Covert, you are such an asset to the writing department! I hope you are successful in your personal ventures as well.

    My Best,

  • June 11, 2016 at 2:31 pm
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    It’s amazing what the Organization will do to try and save face. Lies, manipulation, coercion…

    Didn’t they talk about this in the Revelation book?

  • June 11, 2016 at 2:49 pm
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    I cannot tell you how much I enjoy these articles. The points are all so well thought out and the perspectives given are spot on. Those along with such clearly exposed tactics have all been major tools to help me truly see what I came from and how it has affected me. I am so grateful to have places like this to remind me of how grateful I am to be free of it and to now have control over my life, my mind, and my heart. It is a gift I am determined not to squander. Keep up the great work.

  • June 11, 2016 at 2:54 pm
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    I would consider this attempt to “explain itself” and make amends with the common public as a small illustration of what web activism and spread of “members only material” (such as the excelent videos and articles with the title “worst convention ever”) can do to this religion. Congratulations to you guys, and see this as a good sign that the GB is becoming afraid!

  • June 11, 2016 at 3:10 pm
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    Excellent analysis CF. I love the point “By cherry-picking its scenario, and limiting disclosure of information, Watchtower has carefully presented a sanitized version of its shunning policy that simply is not true.”

    Actually Watchtower presents a santized version of itself in everything they do – especially their history – much like the Ingsoc government from 1984. So much for the candour of the bible writers!

    • June 11, 2016 at 7:38 pm
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      I’m sorry ingsoc government? I’m unfamiliar with that.

      • June 12, 2016 at 2:21 am
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        @Dwc. Ingsoc from George Orwell’s novel ‘1984’. The English Socialist party. Recommended reading, imo. At the very least an abbreviated summary or Wikipedia reference.

  • June 11, 2016 at 3:12 pm
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    Great article! But it could be even greater on the eyes of a pedant. You need to do some editing. Have someone else read it and discover the minor errors.

    • June 11, 2016 at 3:32 pm
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      You are right, mistakes stand out to me but I am also guilty of making them. Other day I put on Facebook the word GROWM. As in a growm man… Sent it off without proof reading it. Now my friends probably think I’m a dill. So we need to cut some slack here…

      • June 11, 2016 at 3:55 pm
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        I rather send a private message pointing out the minor errors, but I don’t have that luxury. And no, I don’t cut any slack regarding great articles. they have to be great in content and form. Undermining the Watchtower is too important!
        By the way, the editors of the Watchtower are good at lying, deceiving and manipulating, but don’t allow errors in form to get through. We have to be at least as good as they are.

        • June 11, 2016 at 4:51 pm
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          Yep, those mistakes are mine. Will correct in the morning. :)

        • June 11, 2016 at 5:56 pm
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          All you guys and your crazy editing skills… Now I’m nervous about commenting!

          At least Covert’s article didn’t contain any lies, coverups, or half-truths. Doesn’t that alone make his message superior?

          • June 12, 2016 at 3:50 am
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            I agree with the post. It is not an attack on an excellently-written article. The fewer the typos, the better. (Online comments are given great license – professional articles are generally not accorded that license.)

          • June 12, 2016 at 11:27 am
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            Did you miss Covert’s cover up?
            Isn’t the omission of his real name a cover up as well? How is it possible to take someone seriously when they don’t practice what they preach?

          • June 13, 2016 at 4:04 pm
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            Adrian,
            Perhaps revealing his real name would result in harm to his family relationships or reputation… In that case you can understand why he (and every masked superhero) would be loath to reveal his true identity.

            Also, I’m not sure that this is a cover-up type scenario.

        • June 11, 2016 at 9:00 pm
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          Felipe…. I can’t believe you didn’t start your sentence with a capital T. It should be: They have to be great.. Also would it not be more correct to say ” I would rather “

        • June 12, 2016 at 4:35 am
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          @Felipe: THE WT has dozens of FREE WORKERS to Edit articles over and over again. They have the $$ and the time to review over and over before sending it out. JW Survey does not have that Luxury. Personally I never noticed the technical errors and I am sure many others did not. I think we need to listen to the message and the point of view CF and others are making.

          The articles are approached from a personal experienced point of view which is the best way to approach an article from personal experience. We need to read what the message is and not look for minor grammar errors. We are not “competing” with the WT. We are telling it like it REALLY is.

          • June 13, 2016 at 6:21 am
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            I’m beginning to be afraid to write comments if we have Felipe checking us out and correcting every “mistake”. I guess you have not been out very long. I can see the spirit of looking for the straw. Very elder like.

        • June 13, 2016 at 10:38 am
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          You neglected to use a capital T for “they have to be great in content and form” …….[just …..proof-reading!]

  • June 11, 2016 at 3:22 pm
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    The short answer: sure. Anyone can “resign” from being one of Jehovah’s Witnesses at any time and for any reason … and every other JW, friend and family member alike will all shun them, often without even knowing the reason except that is what they are told to do by the Watchtower leaders.

    Let’s review: it’s a cult!

    • June 11, 2016 at 7:21 pm
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      I love it when you point out it’s a cult, Oubliette. Keep doing that.
      I’m actually very hot under the collar over a blood death near here recently. Let’s not forget that the WT are happy to continue to kill their followers rather than remove the blood ban and risk being sued and exposed as frauds.

      Let’s review: the Blood Cult don’t hesitate to kill their followers for money and power.

  • June 11, 2016 at 3:51 pm
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    Welcome to the real reason

  • June 11, 2016 at 3:54 pm
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    They are losing

  • June 11, 2016 at 4:09 pm
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    They are fraud and will sink like the titanic. The scripture below show that they practice what God hates.

    Proverbs 6:16-19

    There are six things that the Lord hates, seven that are an abomination to him: haughty eyes, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked plans, feet that make haste to run to evil, a false witness who breathes out lies, and one who sows discord among brothers.

    • June 11, 2016 at 4:24 pm
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      they want you to judge, that’s their only freedom x

  • June 11, 2016 at 4:13 pm
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    Heads hands feet, a Song For Suzie

  • June 11, 2016 at 5:11 pm
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    Disappointed, but hardly surprised or shocked in the way that WT.org explains the shunning policy to potential new converts. The thing is, these new convention videos showing the treatment of DF/DA individuals make for a much more powerful statement than printed words and explanations in a FAQ. What’s really surprising about the “Remain Loyal To Jehovah” convention is how candid the Society is being to the public and about the very unpleasant silent treatment you’re going to experience from your friends and loved ones if you decide to leave the organization. Usually, events like the Convention and the Memorial emphasize all the positive sounding themes. But these talks and videos that deal with “Remain loyal to Jehovah…. Or else!!!!” is sure to scare off many interested ones who don’t want to open up the possibility of their own family being torn apart by shunning. In the Society’s effort to cling to the publishers that remain, they are very likely repelling potential new converts in the heavy-handed methods that are being used to coerce loyalty to the organization. What’s ironic is that for years, WT has downplayed or denied the extent of shunning to the public. They have discredited online YouTube messages that talk about shunning as being the product of disgruntled, “mentally diseased” apostates. Yet here they are in 2016, presenting their own video dramatizations to the world of how shunning really works! If WT collapses and the GB are exposed for the frauds they are, they will have been their own worst enemy.

    • June 13, 2016 at 7:42 am
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      @ Frankie’s Market

      The irony doesn’t stop at the Convention with them chasing off possible converts. How about them asking for brothers specializing in law to help them out a few months ago?

      The only possible attorneys in the organization will be those that came in with the credentials in hand before being baptized. Of course, due to their ridiculous stand against witnesses furthering their education the Governing Body opted for getting minimum wage, dead end jobs, so as to push a career in pioneering. As a result the Governing Body is now reaping the consequences of that policy.

      As you said they have been and will continue to be their own worst enemy. The Watchtower will eventually implode and collapse on itself. It’s just a matter of time.

  • June 11, 2016 at 6:54 pm
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    gEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEZ!

  • June 11, 2016 at 7:29 pm
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    If the Watchtower religion was in reality the way it presents itself to the media and outsiders, then taking whole blood transfusions would be “a matter of personal conscience”; people could freely come and go in and out of the religion with no psychological trauma; and there would be no issues regarding their handling of child abuse cases.

    In short, there would be no critical need for sites such as this if only they would live up to their imagined image of themselves!

    Till that day comes, thanks for keeping up the great work that you do!

    • June 12, 2016 at 12:20 am
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      A very astute observation Steve. It should be a case of “nothing to see here”, which if they truly were gods organisation you would expect – especially when the ARC shone a light on them – they should have set the benchmark for good practice. It turns out nothing they say can be trusted, from child abuse allegations to lame telly awards; they are a far cry from “the truth” they claim the patent on.

      • June 12, 2016 at 2:24 am
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        So true EAB.

  • June 11, 2016 at 7:44 pm
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    Just for the record after day 2 of my last convention… Yesterday during the shun videos they did not mention in any way to shun inactive ones who commit gross sins. Not at all mentioned.

    Then today they pleaded with inactive ones and mentioned hey are going to make an effort to recover them.

    Seems to me they are back tracking.

    Day 2 had a pretty decent video drama as well. They are really pulling on the human emotions and the concept of the new system to keep the masses in line.

    My wife knows my feelings and was bawling pleading with me not to leave. I will have to do this in the right way for sure.

    Anyways thanks for the update CF.

    • June 11, 2016 at 9:45 pm
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      Dwc,
      I’m sorry you have to go through all this without your wife’s support.

      Does she let you explain your reasons?

    • June 12, 2016 at 4:29 am
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      Thank you for your comment. I hope the same occurs (re- the shunning of non disfellowshipped ones) at the convention where my family will be attending this summer.
      The thought of what lies ahead is constantly at the back of my mind whilst I’m busy, then at the forefront of my mind whilst I’m trying to relax.
      However, all that conditioning that I received during my 30 year indoctrination programme kicked in whilst I was watching the bunker videos. I even got emotional at the thought of how the bros and sis were just trying to do what they think is right in Jehovah’s eyes and remain loyal. All I could see were the faces of my own loved ones superimposed over the faces of those cringy actors. I had to catch my breath! I was torn between feeling admiration and pity for them. I can see that the emotive message behind this years convention is going to cause some audience members to feel this is ‘the best ever’ convention rather than the worst. For me, that’s probably the most disturbing part of the whole situation.
      My husband was getting ready for the meeting this morning and I must’ve been wearing my ‘relaxing bitch’ face. He asked me what’s wrong n I initially denied that anything was bothering me. He pressed me about it so I said it sometimes pisses me off that he wants to go sit shoulder to shoulder with people, who were once lifelong friends of mine, that think I’m going to die at Armageddon. He replied that ‘I’m the only one that thinks that way’ to be true and that he NEVER thinks about losing me at Armageddon. I suggested that he start thinking about it and to question how he feels about it but I know he won’t. It’s forbidden. He’ll just carry on drinking the Kool Aid and put my fears down to hormones or being silly enough to fill my head with apostate lies off the internet.
      I hope that the shunning talks are presented to my family as only applicable to ones that are disfellowshipped. I’m as fearful of this convention programme as the jws will be of the great tribulation when they see the mind controlling bunker videos.

      • June 12, 2016 at 11:50 am
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        @Imgonaburn- your husband and mine, cognitive dissonance at it’s finest. My husband does not believe I will die at Armageddon either, but not because he doesn’t feel that I am now in that doomed apostate class, but because he believes that I still have time to turn around and repent before the end comes.

        So for now he is choosing to ignore that the flaw is in the belief system itself. Instead he sees the flaw is in me, and I am the only one who is making it hard on myself and him by my staunch refusal to ‘return to Jehovah’.

        I’m trying very hard to nudge him often and gently to get him to think and ask questions without pressing so hard that he gets angry and defensive.

        It is indeed a very fine line.

        • June 13, 2016 at 6:13 pm
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          There are some good tactics outlined in “Freedom of Mind: Helping Loved Ones Leave Controlling People, Cults, and Beliefs” by Steve Hassan. One suggestion offered is: “Rather than discussing the doctrines of a group, I shift the focus to the beliefs of other controlling people or groups. With religious cults, it helps to talk about your spirituality and faith. If you find common ground, it will be easier to talk. Spell out criteria that you can agree on. This takes you a step closer to the goal of helping the person broaden his perspective.”

          The book also discusses how to recognize the difference between the cult self and the authentic self and how to make progress based on which you are dealing with.

          WS

    • June 12, 2016 at 4:41 am
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      @Dwc
      If your wife’s best friends are JWs, and she goes with you she’ll have to start her friendships from scratch. That’s going to be hard on her. Keep being understanding, and hopefully your unconditional love will help her realise how things should be between her and the people who say they love her.
      Good luck and be strong.

      • June 12, 2016 at 7:16 pm
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        Hey appreciate the comment… Yeah her family is firm in it. I have to do this the right way.

        Just a side note day 3 end of the convention. Last video is of the “new system” and everyone who has been in the videos are there and at the very end the father who lost his youngest son is reunited on the beach.

        Everyone was crying, heck I was crying! It is powerfully emotional stuff. I feel so angry yet at this point just sad… They are using the hopes and dreams of mostly sincere individuals who love God.

        I know a lot here are atheist, agnostic or other. I personally firmly believe in God but not this organization. I have decided to never let these negative things in my life anymore. I am going to choose based on the bible what is true. And I am looking forward to when Jesus will make all things right and do away with all organized religion.

        Randy it is good to hear your voice/txt again!

        • June 13, 2016 at 3:04 am
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          And there you have it! As expected the videos provoke an emotional response so you get warm and fuzzy about the entire programme, forgetting all about any disturbing parts or points that cause you to doubt. Don’t misunderstand me, I’m not attacking you for your response. I’m just highlighting how their methods work. I mentioned in a previous comment about the GB tactic of pulling at heartstrings using as much sensory stimulation as possible.
          They should have shown in the video the billions of non jws getting slaughtered, including the ex jws that have faded or been dfd and not returned to Jehovah before the Arma-deadline! Heck what about people in the public eye that we admire, our favourite actor, musician etc
          How about showing a brother devastated that his wife or son dies in his arms because they ‘looked back’ at the things behind as Lots wife did!
          It’s not balanced!! People inside the religion should be forced to think about what ‘Everlasting Life’ will be like without their loved ones. After all if, as it’s been suggested, people are leaving the organisation in droves, then surely those that remain need to have their resolve to stay strengthened? Is that what just happened at this convention?
          Every single Jehovah’s Witness is going to lose somebody they know or even love at Armageddon…but no, let’s not talk about our losses [says the GB] lets remain positive [lose track of reality] and focus on the blessings of the resurrection hope. Ain’t life grand-albeit without my spouse/child/brother/sister/parent

          Wait a minute? What is ‘the message of judgement’ that was mentioned in bunker video? I was so busy thinking about how wonderfully brave the bros and sis are with their bucket loads of loyalty and integrity, I forgot about that part!! Have they gone back to that old chestnut?
          If the gb instruct the rank and file to go out and preach this so called unpalatable message ( Kevin couldn’t stomach it ) then they risk getting jumped on by govt for disseminating hatred. BOOM! Great Tribulation begins. They all get rounded up and excluded from society. We get to live in peace. If I could watch a video depicting THAT I could get warm and fuzzy too! Maybe I should change my keep schtum stance towards my jw family and warn them??

  • June 11, 2016 at 9:04 pm
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    once your sucked into the cult only then do you know about shunning, only then will you find out for yourself how hard it is to leave without being treated worse than a criminal child molester.

    your day will come GB, lies deceit and manipulation, running scared of losing your charity status?

  • June 12, 2016 at 1:04 am
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    Former Jehovah’s Witness here, brought up from birth in that organisation. I was baptised prior to 1985 when the baptismal questions were changed. I voted with my feet in the mid 1970’s and simply disappeared. I had not done anything wrong and I was never disfellowshipped. Back then, nobody needed to hand in their resignation by letter. Back then, there were no rules about shunning Witnesses who simply left.

    Regarding the FAQ ‘Can a Person Resign from Being One of Jehovah’s Witnesses?’ the part that says “Rather than shunning such ones,” applies only to those Witnesses who have slowed down, who are discouraged, but who have not “abandoned their faith.” The FAQ fails to say how they treat anyone who resigns, although it is implicit that any Witness whose actions place them outside of the organization (by joining another religion, for example) would be shunned.

    The worst thing about all of this is that those Witnesses who resign and who are not guilty of serious sin (such as immorality or smoking) or of wanting to join another religion will still be shunned!

    Regarding the FAQ ‘Do Jehovah’s Witnesses Shun Former Members of Their Religion?’ notice how they connect being disfellowshipped with committing “a serious sin.” Well, it now transpires that criticizing the Governing Body and/or denying Watchtower teachings is now “a serious sin”. So any baptised and inactive Witness must now be shunned simply because they no longer go along with the Governing Body and its teachings and demands!

    You have to really dig deep to uncover the truth about shunning. The footnote on page 209 of the Jehovah’s Witness publication “Keep Yourselves in God’s Love” under the heading “How to Treat a Disfellowshipped Person” says: “Bible principles on this subject apply equally to those who disassociate themselves from the congregation.”

    One reason the organisation refuses to admit that any Witness who resigns will be shunned is to put on a public front of being Christian. The truth is they are guilty of dishonesty and cowardice. The other reason they refuse to admit that people who resign will be shunned is to control and manipulate the members. They don’t want anybody to find out the real reasons why people leave – and it’s not because they have become wicked and immoral! It’s because they have discovered the truth about the organisation and its leaders – that they can no longer go along with the constantly changing “increased light” or the fact that paedophiles in the congregation are not reported to the authorities or that the leaders are demanding unquestioning obedience.

    Thank you for exposing the shameful truth about how Jehovah’s Witnesses are being manipulated by the Governing Body in order to keep them loyal to the organization.

  • June 12, 2016 at 2:26 am
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    Another thing the FAQ conveniently doesn’t mention is all the actions that are seen as disassociatingredients yourself.

    According to the elders manual, also accepting a blood transfusion when needed means you have disassociated yourself.

    So the FAQ not only leads people to believe you can leave without negative consequences, it is also obscuring the more controversial ideas the Witnesses have on why people should be shunned.

    • June 12, 2016 at 10:52 am
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      This brazen use of “disassociatingredients” is too brazen for me. You are hereby shunned..

      Whiskey Tango Foxtrot does that mean–brazen? So, guys and ladies, you can’t have cajones or any “brass balls” to be a JW. (Rutherford would be dismissed by the way, if he weren’t part of the “in” leadership). Subjective and arbitrary, as much as being shunned for gluttony.

      Let’s go back to the look for many, many leaders and members–Over-eaters Anonymous candidates, and these are not shunned for gluttony (2 Thess 3:10; Matt 11:19)? It’s glandular! Is eating filling a void? drinking? sex?

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NBBJzaEoITc

      PS: A horrifying terrorist attack in central Florida, USA–caused by religious radicals.

  • June 12, 2016 at 5:01 am
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    Thank you for exposing the lies of the watchtowers.
    At list there is some one who bring the lies of the watchtower in to light, on this specific subject. The general public and the jehovah witness must be informe for the corruption coverup and the twisted lies of the watchtower.
    Our voice as ex-jehovah witnesses must be extreme lought. we must destroy this organization which deceiving the general public, and special the naive jehovah witnesses.

  • June 12, 2016 at 6:24 am
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    When TC Russel started this cult 100+ years ago,The Watchtower did not anticipate Covert Fade and the rest of the writing department of JW Survey. Keep pressing hard on their tumors of hypocrisy. I m reminded of a scene in The Matrix, where the Merovingian tells Neo and Morpheus and Trinity “ Tell the fortune teller that her time is….up”. Well done guys, press on!

  • June 12, 2016 at 6:38 am
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    Hi Everyone,

    This is a brief response without having read all the details.

    I left the faith on good terms in Oct of 2007. No action was taken. We openly celebrated Christmas in 2009. My name was announced at the Kingdom Hall in March of 2010 despite the fact that I repeatedly asked them not to use the “short form” wording that would leave audience members with the impression I was disfellowshipped. I would not have minded a longer expression stating that I was an atheist and one that made it clear they were not asking for me to be shunned.

    Upon learning from SDB:SSY, the anonymous JW at HQs (the Union Hills congregation Phoenix, AZ, elders would not return my phone calls or or answer my letters), that action had been taken, I wrote him a letter. In the letter I asked:

    Please explain how anyone can leave the faith without being labeled “wicked” (1 Corinthians 5:13), short of continuing year-after-year to live by some undefined subset of the rules that govern active members.

    That was in 2010, no answer was ever given. I asked SDB:SSY, again, 6 more times — approximately at one year intervals. The key bit, is not that, there is no way to resign — of course there is — as an elder myself I knew exactly what the steps were. The question is can they do so without facing reprisal? Or at what point does the organization feel they no longer can induce others to shun a former member, specifically naming them at the Kingdom Hall, as a form of slander?

    Take care everyone,
    -Randy
    ps. One bit of advice I give former members is this: JWs, especially the leadership believe in shunning, but unless you do to, don’t accept it. Don’t assume the average JW will always shun. In real life, it often simply does not work out the way the leaders would desire. When I visit Quesnel, BC, and see JWs I know, I’m friendly with them. When I attend the Kingdom Hall, once per year for the memorial, I’m friendly and conversational. When I approach Witnesses on the street — same thing. Thus many of us in the Ex-JW community do everything we can to maintain normal relations. Of course sad to say, even with this, some very dear family members, make a point of completely shunning me — as we all get older and our lives change. Very sad!

    • June 12, 2016 at 10:02 am
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      I agree with many of your points, Randy. In addition what makes me angry is the insidious way the GB ties the directive to shun to your relationship with Jehovah.

      If they really called it what it was and admitted that it’s their own man made rule to maintain control, there would be widespread calls for repeal and reform from inside the congregations and far more people would just ignore it in the meantime.

      But by continuing to insist that it’s what God wants and what he requires and that it’s helping, even when it offends sensibilities and even when it is spoken against, people who love their friends and family members will equate shunning with loyalty to God and they will do it anyway even though it hurts THEM as well.

      Makes me so angry.

  • June 12, 2016 at 8:05 am
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    Well isn’t this just a pack of fabrication. Well done mr covertfade in trying to unravel this very convoluted faq. It seems to me they cannot be honest and actually say what the rules are because as we all know they will haemorrhage new recruits like a cut vein. Also this faq needs unravelling by a legal whizz because us in the know, know but cannot necessarily explain things correctly. It’s amazing how this question is being raised now they surely know we have had enough of their nonsense and we want unconditional fellowship with our families. I am particularly annoyed at the arrogant assumption that I as a fader want to go on a moral rampage and murder spree so my former friends would have to treat me like doggy doo shoe dirt. I just want to fade no longer attend all their functions but maintain my dignity as a human being and please god as I please Surely it would be a loving thing to let me go and not treat me like a killer and all the other freethinking faders out there. I wonder what the gb think they are achieving by this obnoxious stance clearly it is not working because we will fade regardless of the consequences and to hell with their manmade rules. Cheers Ruthlee

  • June 12, 2016 at 9:44 am
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    Wonderfully written and investigated article! The org is getting bolder by the day- their overconfidence is mind boggling. Before my husband & I left together coming on 2 years now, a couple in our hall were having obvious problems. He had stopped attending but his wife continued faithfully, encouraged and supported by all to remain strong. Eventually we saw him return, albeit with visible resentment. You see, he had started having doubts and thought about leaving, as some in his family had already done. Only months later did my husband find out through his friend (who found out from a gossipy elder) that the elders had met with this poor man and laid it out clearly- if he didn’t adjust his thinking to get rid of his doubts, they would sanction a scripturally approved divorce for his wife, WHO WANTED TO GET ONE IF HE DIDN’T CHANGE! Are you really telling me there’s no pressure or coercion there? Where is that talked about in the FAQ? Only in the shepherd book, where it ranks spiritual endangerment higher than physical danger. My former best friend, who now shuns me completely, was smacked around by her husband early in their marriage, even while pregnant, but she was just told to try to be a better wife. But elders would sanction a divorce for this other sister, who’s husband obviously loves her (as he came back to meetings) for “spiritual endangerment”. The misalignment of priorities is beyond shocking- your husband can beat you senseless without much intervention but if he starts exercising critical thinking skills, we’ll swoop in to save you from spiritual harm. That broken arm will mend on its own but the potential for a mind to be extricated from bondage to WT, well that’s serious and needs to be prevented at all costs. Articles like this are doing an excellent job pointing out these inconsistencies and outright deceptions. Keep up this wonderful important work!

    • June 12, 2016 at 10:17 am
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      @JudyQ – it’s stories like these that convinced me that these cannot be God’s people. How would Jehovah ever require a woman to stay with a man who beats her, but let a woman out of an otherwise loving marriage for lesser reasons of spiritual endangerment? These ridiculous and harmful double standards are clearly not from God!

      It enrages me that even victims perpetuate the abuse.

      • June 12, 2016 at 10:19 am
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        Misalignment of priorities, indeed!

  • June 12, 2016 at 10:42 am
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    Next time I bump into an elder and he makes his pitch to “come on down” for a meeting with idiots to discuss my current “stand” I’ll simply reply “you are not authorized to coerce or pressure me to remain a Jehovah’s Witness” then direct him to the website and let him read it for himself. We all know how that will go.

  • June 12, 2016 at 11:25 am
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    They use the name JHVH as a weapon to force submission.
    In the shunning issue they make it a choice of either loyalty
    to JHVH or loyalty to family. You’re cornered, no room to move.

    They take un-authorised liberties with that name. The texts
    misapplied to shunning are mainly taken from the Greek
    Scriptures ( New Testament), but there are No Greek
    manuscripts with the (Tetragrammaton) the Hebrew word
    transliterated as YHWH or JHVH .

    The name Jehovah simply does not appear in complete form
    in the New Testament. So how can they use that name to
    threaten, people into shunning their own flesh and blood.

    Further liberties are taken by adding that name in their NWT
    over 230 times, ( Despite the Bible warning against adding to it)
    If God had wanted his name there could he not have done it
    without their interference ? Would his name not have been
    present in Greek Manuscripts?

    Just check out how many times they attach the name Jehovah
    to a threat.

  • June 12, 2016 at 2:20 pm
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    This article is very timely and 100% on point.
    Watchtower misleads people to join, misleads them through its teachings, and is further trying to mislead the general public via their website FAQ.
    We simple stopped attending meetings a year ago because of changes to teachings that we felt were not scripturally supported. We shared our questions with some close friends. Within 24 hours of sharing those doubts we had an email from one of them insisting that we confirm our belief that the GB were Gods sole channel of communication. When I replied that I still believed in God and his word (and used the Watchtower ploy of not answering the question) I was informed that this person and their family would be shunning us as bad associations. Within a few weeks others were cutting us off, and finally we heard rumours circulating that we were apostates. All without any of these other people (apart from the first couple) asking us what our concerns were. Shunning is real. It hurts. It is a cult method employed to retain a “captive membership” as Angus Stewart described it. Thanks for exposing more Watchtower lies, hypocrisy and deceit.

  • June 12, 2016 at 10:13 pm
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    In the WTBTS submission to the Australian Child abuse royal commission— now on record —

    9.372 Moreover, the suggested finding has no connection with preventing or responding to child sexual abuse and, furthermore, appears not to appreciate the difference between disassociation and inactivity. As was explained, if someone decides to no longer associate with Jehovah’s Witnesses that is a personal decision and no disciplinary action is taken against that person.

    9.373 For example, Mr Geoffrey Jackson stated: 283 “I thought I made it quite clear I don’t agree with that supposition”. We do not have a “so-called spiritual police force” to chase after ones who no longer want to be Jehovah’s Witnesses.”

    9.374 For example, Mr O’Brien stated: 284 “They don’t have to disassociate themselves to stop associating. They don’t lose their spiritual or familial association by being inactive.”

    so maybe we have a something to contest legally if people are told to shun us ?

    • June 13, 2016 at 4:14 am
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      @ Robert p – part of the problem is still this: JWs are told that when there is a conflict, they must obey God as ruler rather than men. And they are taught that this shunning principle is a command from God.

      So even if legal action is pursued and legal precedent is set, the GB would likely encourage regular JWs to continue the practice, even if there were legal consequences.

      If there were consequences, it would likely be described as foretold persecution for upholding Jehovah’s high standards.

  • June 13, 2016 at 6:05 am
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    ‘Oh what a tangled web we weave when we practice to deceive’, Sir Walter Scott.

  • June 13, 2016 at 6:17 am
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    ‘Crosses are green crosses are blue your friends didn’t make it through’, Dance on a volcano, Genesis (ironically enough :-) )
    Leave no one behind, the is brilliant:-)

  • June 13, 2016 at 6:45 am
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    After watching the videos do you do feel like a ‘free person’?
    So they’ve come to spy on freedom and say ‘welcome to the home by the sea’.
    If your mentality retired, well ‘ding’ Pavlos dog.

  • June 13, 2016 at 7:04 am
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    One ear doesn’t sound so bad said Beethoven.

  • June 13, 2016 at 8:03 am
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    I recently reached out to my parents after finding out about the convention contents through this site, and (not being able to figure out whether they had had theirs, after searching the JW.org site), simply sent them an email stating that I was aware of recent instruction from the GB that suggests they must shun even non-DS/DA “unrepentant” inactive ones (“faders”), expressing my fear that they would do it, and that it is an unloving practice that would do nothing but cause pain, not a “return”. I said nothing that could be considered apostate apart from iterating (as I have before, since childhood in fact) that shunning is wrong.

    My mother called me and said that she and and my dad had discussed it and they weren’t going to do it, but that she considers herself a “flawed Witness” for not being able to bring herself to do it. Thanks for the reassurance, mom.

    My dad was much less ambivalent, and said that he would never, ever do it. Turns out they haven’t gone to their convention yet, and my greatest hope is that at least he will hear the vileness coming from the platform and walk out, realizing in that moment that our bond was indeed being weaponized. Mom, however…it’s already halfway operational with her. “Shun-gun” is excellent shorthand, by the way.

    Anyway, I encourage scared folks to consider writing a few simple lines to their JW loved ones, if you feel that they’re on the fence and might need a bit of help to put all of this together. I doubt I’ve heard the end of this, but my parents BOTH said that they wouldn’t do it when I expressed my fears. That’s something.
    But, my mother, as always, did parrot the party line:

    “Shunning, as you call it…”
    “Mom, it’s called shunning. It’s on the program for the convention, on JW.org.”
    “All right, all right…well, it is scriptural.”
    [Silence]
    “Anyway, there have been some cases where it’s been appreciated and people have come back.”
    [Silence]
    “Your dad and I love you and your sister. But you’re going to die!”
    “Mom, we aren’t discussing this.”
    “This is what we believe is the truth!”
    “I know you do.”

    • June 13, 2016 at 4:37 pm
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      @ quietabandon

      Tell your Mom if you get a chance: “All of us have an “expiration date” and will die sooner or later, some sooner than others due to the inherited morbidity of Adamic sin and accidental death.

      That being said the chances of dying at Armaggedon are absolutely slim, none and no way. And because the chances are so impossibly small its not worth worrying about. There are more chances of being struck by lightening while being bitten by a great white shark, while performing a hula on a surf board than seeing the Great Tribulation or Armageddon come to fruition.

      Refer your loving Mother to the July 15, 2013 study article where they throw “Chuckie” Taze Russell under the bus with his followers and look at the chart (time line) that shows the rapture. Yeah, the marvelous chart showing all of what has to happen before Armageddon comes. (Everyone scream “New Light!”)

      I’ll leave this last thought with you feel free to use it or not: If anyone on the earth today thinks that they will live to see any of this time-line fulfilled (more than 100 years in my opinion) before they die then there is a padded room and coats with 60″ sleeves (comes with matching straps and buckles) waiting for their delusional selves.

      By my estimation, if this chart is correct (big IF here) the Great Crowd that survives Armageddon is not even born yet!

      My Mom and other J.W. relatives who served faithfully for over 60 years watching 1975 come and go have all died; disappointed, discouraged, disillusioned and disgusted (not necessarily in that order). Lives totally wasted and for what? Gathering treasures in heaven that you cannot withdraw or spend? Waiting for the “day of Jehovah” that never comes. How pathetically sad.

  • June 13, 2016 at 8:48 am
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    Brilliant research CF. One of the marks of a cult is control. As Oubliette rightly says, the membership will do precisely what the GB says, even if it means lying.

  • June 13, 2016 at 9:07 am
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    Thank you once again for another excellent article. Kind Regards, Jaime

  • June 13, 2016 at 11:56 am
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    Thanx Covert and all at JW Survey for giving us this info. Heck with whether spelling mistakes or sentence structure not quite right…the message is there…that is the main thing…keep up the excellent work! :))

  • June 13, 2016 at 3:42 pm
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    I don’t think the shunning message has changed from “the old days” from what I saw in the convention. Inactive Witnesses are still Witnesses and won’t be shunned by decree (personal actions will be what ever they will be) IF the inactive one has not committed an offense meriting a DF.

    They are still considered “weak” Witnesses due to their non-participation, but that’s it. In my 40 years as a Witness, I’ve never seen an inactive witness shunned unless said DF-ing behavior came to light. Then, depending on how visible such behavior is by others as a reflection of Witnesses in general, the person would be DF’ed even without his participation in the process.

    If the community at large no longer really considers him a Witness, his behavior MAY be overlooked.

    • June 13, 2016 at 6:19 pm
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      Hi WitnessForTheDefense,

      My history goes back many years too. Baptized at 16 in 1981 to leaving the faith in 2007 to having my name announced in March of 2010. Generally what you say is true. However, it is important to keep in mind that while Jehovah’s Witnesses provide guidelines to elders, they place no time limit on themselves or specify what actions qualify for the designation of “disassociation by action.” My own case is a good example of this, we openly celebrated Christmas for the 2009 season and have each year since. Yet they took action only against me and not other baptized members of my household. Why?

      Although only the elders of the Union Hills congregation could really answer that, to me it was fairly clear. Having served with these brothers as an elder myself, only to resign in 2005, then leave in 2007, they no doubt felt greater disappointment in my choices than that of my family. A rationalization of he is “weak” provides a sort of rationalization that allows on to excuse disappointing behavior. But a presentation of deliberate choice, directly made and not excused raises the sense of righteousness in these men.

      But… really feelings of righteousness and indignation is their problem! Just leave me alone is the correct answer, but alas, this takes some beyond-the-faith thinking to get to.

      Thus you’ll notice DBA is pursued, even years later, where the former member takes some public action, like openly celebrating Christmas. In one case a former member wrote a self-published book critical of the faith, five years after leaving, and this prompted DBA.

      This is why I asked SDB:SSY the question I did. Because the way to avoid DBA is to show a measure of obedience to dogma of the faith year-after-year — to maintain the “weak” status. Well, for many of us, that just isn’t the way we want to live and if we did it would involve hypocrisy. Did I continue to agree with Rutherford’s reasons for nixing Christmas? No! Both him and his 1925 failure is way in the past and is no reason to withhold a normal childhood from my children.

      To some it is a small point, but those who are disassociated, either of their own accord or “by action” are not “disfellowshipped.” Yes, obedience members are asked to shun them, but such individuals have not been through the judicial process and judged as lacking repentance and offered the opportunity for appeal. Disassociated individuals also may not be informed when and if an announcement is made.

      Kind regards,
      -Randy

      • June 13, 2016 at 8:03 pm
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        I appreciate your candid reply. I’ve been DF’ed once and publicly reproved twice. I’m no candidate for any higher position than PFC in Jehovah’s Army…Publisher First Class, although I think my “First Class” rating may be only in my mind. I am apparently not qualified even to carry mics, but I’ve no problem with that.

        I see the organization with all it’s warts and fallibilities, but I still think it’s closer to the Bible than any other Bible-based “Christian” religious organization. Not one of them is “perfect”…not one. But this one is closer, in my opinion.

        I’m against any “modernization” of strict Biblical principals to conform to the modern age. Homosexuality and any form of sex outside of a heterosexual marriage is still wrong. Shunning for egregious behavior is still right, even for adult family members.

        People know the rules when they “check in”…there is NO easy “check out”…you agree with it and enter, or you shouldn’t.

        Buy the ticket…take the ride.

        I’ve read both sides of the story regarding 607, NGO, etc. and I’m OK with. I don’t expect anywhere even close to “perfection” among the GB. I don’t feel enders on up are appointed by Holy Spirit, but I do feel the Holy Spirit guides (whether those in charge take such guidance) the organization as a whole when looked at from the wide view.

        No other “Christian” religion is growing at the rate as the JW’s. We’re small relative to the “big boys”, but we’re growing at a percentage rate faster than they are.

        I do not disbelieve any of the JW core teachings and deal with the others in my usual skeptical and jaundiced manner. Even today, I do not adhere to many of their admonitions and really hope Jehovah grades on a curve, or I’m screwed!!

        • June 14, 2016 at 2:26 am
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          Ah… if you are aware of the all story 607, ngo (while many JWs lost their life for political neutrality) and it’s still ok for you… i don’t know how you can sleep the night.
          “No other “Christian” religion is growing at the rate as the JW’s”. Simply, it’s not true. Please, check this link
          http://www.jwfacts.com/watchtower/preach.php
          JWs are decreasing. Last year 260,273 people were baptized but the publishers have increased only 18,560 (Yearbook 2016).

          • June 14, 2016 at 11:10 am
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            And yet the average number of active Witnesses grows year after year, going from a bit over 2 mil in 1980 to 8 mil in 2015. The results for this year will, I’m sure, show yet more increase.

            Show me a religious hierarchy of the stature of JW’s or greater, culminating in the Roman Catholic Church, that doesn’t have “dirty hands” every so often. Imperfect humans cannot create a perfect organization, even one backed by Jehovah, as was shown in both the Jewish and first century Christian organizations described in the Bible.

            I believe the JW’s are “less bad” than any other Bible-based religious organization and follow Bible rules and principles most closely. I discount all religions not based on the Bible and, of course, do not hold with atheists nor agnostics.

        • June 14, 2016 at 11:31 pm
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          1.5 % growth last year. Population growth averages 1.3%. Simply stated, if witnesses would just keep their children in the truth, without bringing in any outsiders, increase would virtually match population growth. Add to that that places like Europe has had virtually no increase for the past 6 years. 0.00001 %, one could argue that per capita there is much less witnesses in Europe compared to 10 years ago. Don’t take my word for it, check the yearbook. If you take the net increase in Europe and you devide that between the numbers of hours preached, assuming that an average publisher reports 10 hours per month, it takes over a 100 years of preaching per convert. If you take into account that 90 % of baptisms, are the children of witnesses, this figure goes up exponentially. Having been born in, these figures match my personal experience. I’ve hardly ever seen anyone come in. I don’t have any strong feelings about this but if you have any objectivity you know there is something wrong with this picture. Fastest growing religion in the world is a phrase out of an eighties watchtower I’m afraid :):):). The increases that are achieved are mostly in third world countries, which is also an alarming statistic. I project that as these statistics get worse in the near future, there is a high probability that they will simply just stop publishing the yearbook.

      • June 13, 2016 at 8:11 pm
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        I failed to respond to some of your points. Once you’re baptized, you’re a Witness FOREVER unless DF’ed or DA’ed. Of course, you know that.

        If some elder bodies decide to proceed with a DBA years after an “offending act”, it’s on them. They do have the right to do so, however. Your actions could have come about 20 years after you “went dark” and they still could have DBA’d you just because they felt like it. A person’s only recourse would be to move out of the area.

        One should know this before “signing on the dotted line”….let the buyer (into this religion) beware. It’s like vary few others.

        I’ve been associated with vindictive bodies of elders as well as lenient ones. It comes and goes, just like any other organizational body of overseers.

        You just have to ride it out. Personally, I’m not looking for a way out, but I see both sides of the issues.

        • June 13, 2016 at 9:14 pm
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          Hi WitnessForTheDefense,

          It is not uncommon for some former Witnesses to hold to the view that the Biblical interpretation of the Witnesses remains the most correct. I’m an atheist yet remain a Bible reader. In January of 2015 I joined the Unitarian Universalists. They’re one of the few faiths that directly accept atheists.

          In regards to Christianity I do believe Jehovah’s Witnesses make a fundamental blunder in regards to Jesus. The mistake, I believe, is not picking up on shift in focus between “Jehovah” in the OT and “Jesus” in the NT. The NT authors all focus on Jesus as Son of God, as the Christ. The entire address is towards Jesus. All the evidence we have is they never used the divine name. And everywhere God is mentioned, it is always in relation to Jesus. The 237 times you see “Jehovah” in the NWT NT is an insertion that is not supported by the extent manuscripts we have.

          But all this is really neither here nor there. What is important, I believe, is your own search for truth and understanding. Learning to parse material and come to your own conclusions is the important thing. You know Proverbs 3:5 says, “Trust in Jehovah with all your heart, And do not rely on your own understanding” which of course is fine, unless “Jehovah” becomes a mere euphemism for “trusted, beyond question, religious leaders”

          Whether one stays or leaves, may we all find peace.

          Take care,
          -Randy

          • June 14, 2016 at 5:06 pm
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            Excellent observation Randy. In fact, as I am sure you are aware, Romans 10:13 can be shown to contextually apply to Jesus, whereas the NWT changes the meaning of the scripture by inserting “Jehovah” in there. One of the many times where they tamper with the scriptures in order to force their own meaning. BTW, I consider myself a deist, and I also remain a bible reader.

            WS

          • June 15, 2016 at 7:55 pm
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            Appendix A5 of the ‘grey Bible” addresses the issue of Jehovah appearing in the NT to my satisfaction.

          • June 16, 2016 at 1:28 am
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            I’ve looked into it, including the opposing position to yours and find the JW’s defense of why Jehovah’s name appears in the NT to be compelling enough to satisfy me, as it also is supported by some non-JW Bible scholars.

          • June 16, 2016 at 4:17 am
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            @Witness
            Who are are these nameless scholars that purportedly support the JWs tampering with scriptures? Are they the same nameless scholars quotes in other Watchtower publications? Watchtower frequently quotes unreferenced “scholars” with make it exceedingly difficult for diligent students to trace their claims. Those who do track down these so-called “scholars” usually find that the quotes are taken out of context or the scholars credentials are sorey lacking.

            There are over 5,000 ancient copies of the New Testament on hand and yet not one of them contains any reference to the Tetragrammaton. How is it that God could not preserve his own name in his own book? Now he needs a group of men to make unauthorized changes because he couldn’t take care of this? If the copies of the New Testament have 237 apparent errors in them, how can we trust anything else they say? I guess the scripture that states: “if anyone takes away from the words of this prophetic book, God will take away his share of the tree of life and the holy city, written in this book” must be an error too, since the JWs have no qualms making such changes.

            WS

          • June 16, 2016 at 4:29 am
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            @Witness
            “Appendix A5 of the ‘grey Bible” addresses the issue of Jehovah appearing in the NT to my satisfaction”

            I have done much more extensive extensive research than only going to one biased source and found that their claims for making this change are in unfounded. Here is one critical review: http://www.neirr.org/Tetragrammaton.htm

            Your reasoning (and actually nearly the exact wording of your argument – evidence of programmed responses?) is similar to that of a good friend of mine when we discussed the 607 date issue (which has zero support outside the Watchtower). Because the Watchtower makes a lame attempt to justify their position JWs swallow it hook, line, and sinker without doing any thorough research. I encourage you to do research outside of the Watchtower resources. Track down some of those “scholarly” quotes they claim to reference. Otherwise your argument can be simply distilled down to: ‘it’s true because Watchtower said so.’

            WS

          • June 16, 2016 at 11:52 am
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            Again, I’m satisfied with the JW’s defense of using Jehovah’s name in the NT. Their defense sites many non-JW sources and Bibles.

            Overall, I’m satisfied and comfortable with the JW’s translation of the Bible and interpretation of its application to modern-day life. I know you’re not, but I don’t care.

            Being so anti-JW, what organized Bible-based religion are you…any of you…actually for? Any one of them? Possibly one of those wishy-washy “all inclusive” ones where all are accepted with open arms? Many of those exist, but it would be easy to poke holes in their accepted doctrine compared to Bible principle.

            Or are you all some form of atheist, agnostic or separatist, feeling that non-organizational study of the Bible is what Jehovah requires (assuming you believe in Him)?

            I know you’re against JW’s, but I’m equally skeptical of whatever you may be for.

            Most people go “God shopping”…finding a doctrine, or no doctrine, that supports the way they want to live anyway. Conforming God to what they want as opposed to finding out what God wants and conforming their lives to it.

            To each his own. My opinion is that of Joshua: “Now if it seems bad to you to serve Jehovah, choose for yourselves today whom you will serve… But as for me and my household, we will serve Jehovah.”

        • June 14, 2016 at 2:34 am
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          “Once you’re baptized, you’re a Witness FOREVER unless DF’ed or DA’ed. Of course, you know that.”

          Sounds like a cult! Of course, you know that.

          • June 14, 2016 at 10:47 am
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            I don’t believe the JW’s are a cult any more than I believe the ancient Israelites or the first century Christians were a cult. They were commanded by Jehovah to stand apart from the world in general, the Israelites commanded to wear a blue fringe as a visual sign.

            They both were very insular, limiting association with “outsiders” and treating those who left with even further social distance. Both groups were of the opinion that “once in, always in until you were their equivalent of DF’ed or DA’ed.

            I believe that is what Jehovah wants of his people today as well. JW’s of today, as were the ancient 2 groups, are not an inclusive bunch. One is either with us or against us.

            Everyone can make their own choice in this regard, but not change the consequences of such choice.

            Sure, the JW’s are an imperfect organization, but to a certain extent so were the Israelites and first century Christians. So are all modern-day organized religions. Yet, Jehovah commands his people to be in an organized religion and indicates that there is only one such religion that is approved by Him. I believe it is the JW’s since I can see no other that conforms to Biblical standards of living, as “unmodern” and “uninclusive” as many of those standards are seen today.

            So, we are not a cult. We are an extremely strict organization that requires anyone to meet certain standards to join and remain, and treats those members who can’t or don’t “keep up” with the same discipline that was meted out to those of Jehovah’s earlier organizations.

            At least we don’t stone anybody anymore.

          • June 14, 2016 at 3:33 pm
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            Witness,

            Please check your data with a reputable source like pewresearch.orgs. JW’s are NOT the fastest growing Christian denomination in the world. Baptists are. JWs are increasing at about the same rate as Mormons and Seventh Day Adventists, which is reasonable since all three started around the same time. As for the fastest growing religion overall it is Islam.

            WS

          • June 14, 2016 at 3:39 pm
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            “We are an extremely strict organization that requires anyone to meet certain standards to join and remain…”

            Sounds like a cult to me. Call it what you like. If it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck…

            BTW, do your elders know you post on apostate websites? At least we can be reasonably sure they won’t stone you for it.

            WS

    • June 14, 2016 at 1:34 am
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      Witness for the Defense, after 1975 the two baptismal questions were changed. The second question now confirms that the baptismal candidate is now in association with “Jehovah’s spirit-filled organization.” So if you disagree with them and want to leave they claim YOU are the one who is shunning them! Only after 1975 did they say a letter of resignation had to be given to the elders.

      What’s changed is the instruction to shun an inactive Witness who has not been disfellowshipped, who has not gone before a judicial committee but who is guilty of “serious sin” – which includes questioning the Governing Body or not agreeing with their teachings.

      In other words, once you have said “yes” to that second baptismal question, you will be punished if you want to leave.

      It was not always like that. I know because my parents became Witnesses in the late 1930’s and I have access to the society literature that proves how they have changed their view over shunning. Yes, the Witnesses have lots of good things about them, but God forbids his people to turn away (hide or shun) their own flesh and blood (Isaiah 58:7).

      • June 14, 2016 at 1:55 pm
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        WitnessFortheDefence!

        1-JW’S are a cult.
        2-The Israelites were a nation not a cult or a religion.
        -The Israelites never looked at their devotion to their God as a religion,but rather as “their way of life” or culture. Each of the 12 tribes were born into a designated service…eg, the Levites were born to be priests,but a more appropriate term is Kohen which in Hebrew meant administrator. The Dan tribe were judges(protectors) …and so on. Non of them were elected to perform their duties. But as we can see, with JW’S they are voted for or elected into office. Further more, there is no word for hebrew meaning religion. So, the question to you is why are you in a religion and claiming to be following the pattern of the Israelites and early Christians whom, by the way were Hebrews and gentiles(limited invites) who never forgot that Christianity was a Hebrew directive.
        3- From Mathew to Revelation, the bible speaks of Jesus Witnesses not Jehovah’s witnesses. Again, JW’s still got it wrong, yet you claim to be God’s representative on earth.
        4-Examining the book of Revelation 20:12 – 15 seems to me the living and the dead ,great and small will be judged according to their deeds not according to established organizations or religions. So, where did you get the idea that humanity will survive Armageddon only if we converted to Watchtower ORG?
        5-Seems to me the bible speaks of tribes and nations, hebrews and gentiles, I have never come across where is speaks of the JW ORG as mankind’s savior. Silly me, I thought that was Jesus role!!!

        on that note, Jehovas Witnesses are a CULT, that can not even be established by scripture.

        It is funny how for the first time Jehova introduced himself to Moses, he actually qualified himself to Moses saying” I m the God of Abraham, Isaak and Jacob” Jehova offers a link that Moses could identify with.
        Jesus too, proves his lean-age in Mathew 1 and Luke. Yet, Jehovas witnesses fail to prove to the world that they are sent by God. God qualifies himself and yet JW.ORG fails to establish it’s link to God.

        In fact the only link I find in the scriptures that establishes JW.ORG is at 1jon4:1-5 2jon1:7-10
        these 2 texts describe a group of people who go around teaching that Jesus did not come in the flash but came invisibly, and was not seen(1914). If you examine verses 10, a warning is given “do not let these people into your house” . In fact these text establish JW’S AS THE ANTI-CHRIST and deceivers originating from the world.

        So, yes again. JW.ORG is a CULT!!!

        Another thing that gets to me about JW’s is how they hide behind imperfection. Heres a question for you DefenceForThewitness, if perfection and imperfection were such a significant factor, how come perfect angels actually turned bad and corrupted humans in Gen 6? Let me answer it for you. Freewill.
        We chose to be good or bad, and the JW ORGANIZATION chooses to do bad, in the name of theocratic warfare. That sounds like cult tactics to me.

      • June 15, 2016 at 1:00 am
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        Witness…

        “Yet, Jehovah commands his people to be in an organized religion and indicates that there is only one such religion that is approved by Him.”

        Where the hell is this command??? In the Revelation the righteous are seen to come from every nation, tribe, people and language, not from a specific place or organization.

        Please, think about it…

        http://www.jwfacts.com/watchtower/organization.php

        “I believe the JW’s are “less bad” than any other Bible-based religious organization”

        “Would you drink a glass of water containing only a drop of poison?”
        Watchtower uses this illustration when speak of other religions.
        Why do you apply a different standard to Witnesses?

        • June 15, 2016 at 7:52 pm
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          Regarding the need for belonging to an organized religion, I refer you to the following. It’s just easier than paraphrising it with a few Scriptural references. I know you don’t agree with it, but I do:

          https://www.jw.org/en/publications/magazines/g201209/do-you-need-organized-religion/#?insight%5Bsearch_id%5D=9da4716f-d44e-43f5-af46-c462d4c5741c&insight%5Bsearch_result_index%5D=0

          https://www.jw.org/en/bible-teachings/questions/organized-religion/#?insight%5Bsearch_id%5D=9da4716f-d44e-43f5-af46-c462d4c5741c&insight%5Bsearch_result_index%5D=2

          Regarding the “less bad” bit, I’ve been around long enough and am experienced enough (age 65 with more letters after my name than in it…and it’s an 11-letter name) that NO human organization is anywhere close to perfect. I do not buy into all the PR the organization puts out and generally understand what they have done, are doing and most likely will do. I’m OK with all of it.

          It is the “least worst” Bible-based organization that tries to work according to the principles of the first century Christians. I believe they have far more doctrinal points right than “questionable”, including the reasonable (to me) explanation of why the name of Jehovah is seen in the New Testiment (see appendix A5 of the “gray Bible” for their explanation, which is supported by various not-JW scholors).

          Buy the ticket – take the ride. I’m comfortable “on the inside” and am not going anywhere, although I’m oft been known to “push the envelope” and read whatever I like. Telling me not to read something is the surest way to get me to do it.

          I can understand, even if not agree with, most of the points made on this site. If a person is looking for “reasons” to get out or stay out, such can be found. Faith is not the possession of all men.

          I believe the JW translation and interpretation of the Bible is the most accurate in current existence, even if they don’t live up to all of it all of the time.

          So, yes, given the Biblical admonition to be part of an organized Bible-based religion, I’ll chose this “least worse” one.

          BTW – I only hope Jehovah “grades on a curve”, or I’m screwed!! And I’m not just talking about skulking around on “the bad side of town” here. :D

        • June 16, 2016 at 1:25 am
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          The Bible says to “gather yourselves together” and do things “decently and by arrangement”. That sounds like an organization to me. Also, the Rev “coming from every”, etc, etc indicates coming INTO Jehovah’s organization, not going OUT FROM it.

          Given the Biblical mandate for an organization, I find no other Bible-based organization that has a better handle on Biblical doctrine than the JW’s, even with their flaws.

          I’ve seen the explanations given for 607, 1914, the NGO and they all seem reasonable enough for me. The fact that the various predictions of “the end” didn’t pan out are due to typical human failings. As to the pedo situation, that is regrettable, but I can understand how they would want to handle it the way they did.

          I don’t see enough to make me want to leave and, besides, to what organization would I then go that upholds ALL bible principles any better? I’m OK with this “least worst” organization, understanding that the PR they put out, like any other organization, is always accentuating the positives while de-emphasizing the negatives.

          • June 16, 2016 at 4:28 am
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            “Also, the Rev “coming from every”, etc, etc indicates coming INTO Jehovah’s organization, not going OUT FROM it.”

            Where does the Bible say that?? INTO?? Where does the word “organization” appear in the Bible?

            “I find no other Bible-based organization that has a better handle on Biblical doctrine”

            Handle on Biblical Doctrine??? The ever-changing JW doctrines??? What it was “truth” 10 years ago now no longer is “truth”. I would not call this “handle on biblical doctrine”.

            I respect your position to believe what you want. But you can’t call this “truth” (truth doesn’t change), but “an interpretation i like”, like any other religion do.

          • June 16, 2016 at 9:19 am
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            This forum must be an easy way for you to get your “time” in…I have examined every single doctrine the Society has produced in my over 60 years since I was baptized and almost every one conflicts with the simple and open teachings of Jesus – that of the Fatherhood of God and the Brotherhood of man. The man Rutherford adopted the 144,000 doctrine from another contemporary religion and ran with it until he ran into too many people coming into the organization so he then came up with the “other sheep” doctrine for some place to put them hence the doctrine of an earthly resurrection on a paradise earth…and the rest is history. Jesus never mentioned any of this, only the heavenly hope for ALL who so choose to worship the heavenly Father. This number is unlimited. By the way fallingangel75 this invitation is open to you and everyone who is reading this. I suggest everyone research these points themselves. Also Witness-For-the-Defense if you really are interested in truth, you will find that the first century organization is a myth that the WT has twisted scripture to bolster their position.

  • June 13, 2016 at 4:26 pm
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    All of us who have been in and out of JWs know how hard it is to get off this organization. Contrary to what the organization claims we are a living proof providing information to people trying to escape JWs mind control and indoctrination. It is scary and delusional in the beginning but understanding the B.I.T.E. model of cults will help you escape JW camp and also lookup to the experience of JW survivors. The activists here are doing wonderful job helping detox the JW indoctrination. Thanks toJWSurvey team.

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