Shunning, Depression and “Armageddon Loophole” lead to tragic JW Murder/Suicide.
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On the 16th of February 2018, Lauren Stuart shot dead her husband and two children before turning the gun on herself.

The killings, which have been widely reported upon, shocked the community of Keego Harbour, Michigan USA, and seemed deeply confusing on the surface.

Lauren was a personal trainer and model with a family and her whole life ahead of her; there was seemingly no reason for this tragic murder/suicide.

However, as time passed, more details became available to the public. Stuart and her family had been Jehovah Witnesses, but had left the faith over ten years ago over a number of doctrinal disagreements such as their desire to send their children to college, something the religion has increasingly and aggressively discouraged in recent years.

As a result of leaving, they were utterly shunned by all their Jehovah’s Witness family and friends, as per the explicit policy of the religion. As can be clearly demonstrated by reading Witness literature anyone who is Disfellowshipped (involuntarily removed from being a member of the religion) or Disassociated (voluntary choosing to leave the religion) is to be completely and utterly shunned.

Jehovah’s Witnesses world-wide were even shown a video in 2016, (created by the corporation that controls the religion, the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society) that shows a scenario where parents throw their daughter out of the family home and then completely shun her for breaking the faith’s strict rules on pre-martial sex. Disturbing as the video is, it is actually intended to be a positive example of how the religion’s leaders expect their followers to treat family members who leave.

It was this total shunning that the Stuart family was subjected to for ten years.

This shunning had a detrimental effect upon Lauren’s mental health and emotions according to news reports, yet more details have emerged in recent days that confirm the killings were not simply the result of depression alone, but were also driven by key Jehovah’s Witness beliefs about the end of the world and Armageddon.

The Detroit Free press have just published an article by Journalist Tresa Baldas, which has subsequently appeared in many media outlets around the globe. The article contains the experiences of many former Jehovah’s Witnesses who have been subjected to significant hardship and suffering as a result of the religion’s strict shunning policy. However, the article also contains additional information that sheds light on the tragic Keego Harbour killings.

Joyce Taylor was a close friend of the Stuarts and also formerly a Jehovah’s Witness. In the article, Taylor recounts that Laura still believed much of the religion’s teachings including the doomsday teaching about Armageddon and who would survive it.

Armageddon: What do Jehovah’s Witnesses believe?

A piece of artwork published by the Jehovah’s Witnesses depicting Armageddon

Put simply, Jehovah’s Witnesses believe that any day now, God is going to personally bring about the end of the world, and that when he does so, he will kill every single man, woman and child who is not one of Jehovah’s Witnesses. The Watchtower publications are very explicit on this point, with JW Leader Tony Morris even going so far as to say that even some Witnesses will not survive the event if they’ve not sufficiently pleased God.

The next step in God’s plan, according to the religion, will be to resurrect any faithful Jehovah’s Witnesses to life who died before God brought the end of the world. Together with the surviving JW’s whom God spared at Armageddon, they will go on to live an eternal life without any death or suffering on a paradise Earth, an environment the Witnesses often refer to as the “New System.”

However, this is not all. The religion also teaches that God will resurrect most of the non-Jehovah’s Witnesses who died before he brought the end of the world. This is a doctrine the Witnesses refer to as the resurrection of the righteous and the unrighteous, which they claim is the meaning of the scripture at Acts 24:15. *See footnote

Thus, according to doctrine, the only people who will not see this paradise Earth and have a chance for eternal life will be those God actually kills when he brings Armageddon to the earth. 

These may seem like the obscure and strange doctrines of a fundamentalist doomsday sect, but they are essential to understanding why the Keego Harbour tragedy unfolded the way it did.

In Baldas’ article, Joyce Taylor relates how in the weeks leading up to the tragedy, an increasingly isolated and depressed Lauren kept talking about the doctrine, and insisting the end times had arrived. Taylor also revealed that she had been allowed by police to read the suicide note Lauren left.

In the note Lauren apparently stated that she was sorry she had to kill her family, but it was the only way to save them.

In other words, she was relying on the “Armageddon loophole.”

The Armageddon loophole: What is it?

If you’ve studied the quick summary of the JW Armageddon doctrine as outlined previously in this article, you may have spotted a loophole; a way for you (or someone you love) to possibly escape eternal destruction by an angry God at Armageddon that doesn’t rely on converting to the One Truth Faith right here and now.

Did you see it?

It goes like this:

  • Step 1: Anyone who isn’t a Witness (including those who have left the faith) when God brings Armageddon is destroyed forever.
  • Step 2: However, anyone who dies before God brings Armageddon will most probably be resurrected on the planet after the divinely sanctioned genocide has passed.
  • Conclusion: Therefore, if someone is refusing to become a Jehovah’s Witness, or if they have left the faith and are refusing to return, and you feel that Armageddon is coming any day now, killing that person before Armageddon comes spares them eternal destruction and allows them to get a resurrection into eternal life.

I’ve actually written about this disturbing loophole before on JW Survey, when analysing the dubious ethics and unintended consequences of the Armageddon teaching. In it I wrote;

You don’t have to use your imagination to see what Armageddon would look like. Human history is replete with examples of genocide. To glimpse the future that a “loving” God will bring, look to the concentration camps of World War II. Look to the mass graves and “ethnic cleansing” in the Balkans, or the hacking to death of vast scores of Tutsi and moderate Hutu by the Hutu majority in Rwanda.

Or look on the news reports right now at the work of ISIS in the Middle East, who are currently engaged in the wholesale slaughter of the Yazidi people.

Now, it goes without saying that 99% of Jehovah’s Witness are no doubt just as horrified as everyone else when they see the awful genocide that the so-called Islamic State are currently committing against the Yazidi population. The wholesale slaughter of men women and children, often in gruesome and sadistic ways, is an appalling crime that has brought universal condemnation from the international community and revulsion from anyone with even a halfway decent moral code.

Yet these men, women and children being slaughtered at the hands of ISIS, are the very same men, women and children who would be slaughtered at the hands of Jehovah if he brought Armageddon today, a slaughter the Jehovah’s Witnesses would be obligated to support and celebrate as a righteous act…

..Even worse, according to Watchtower theology, those who die before Armageddon will almost certainly be resurrected into God’s New World in order to have a second chance, whereas those who die at his hands at Armageddon are eternally destroyed. Remember that Watchtower FAQ quoted earlier in the article?

“Many millions who lived in centuries past and who weren’t Jehovah’s Witnesses will have an opportunity for salvation. The Bible explains that in God’s promised new world, “there is going to be a resurrection of both the righteous and the unrighteous.”

Why do I say “even worse?” Because this teaching creates an horrific moral loophole. If Witnesses take their theology to its logical conclusion, they should be celebrating the deaths of “worldly” people at the hands of killers like ISIS, for those “worldly” people at least have a chance of resurrection in the new world, whereas if they escape the ISIS sadists but then die at Armageddon, they are doomed forever. 

Now before we go any further it is important to stress something and I want you read this at least three times to make sure this is clear:

Jehovah’s Witnesses are not directly taught this loophole and nowhere in the religion is the killing of others by Jehovah’s Witnesses encouraged or advised. In fact the religion specifically forbids JW’s to commit murder.

Most Jehovah’s Witnesses have not even realised this loophole exists; they are discouraged from questioning or speculating beyond the specific teachings presented by their leaders, and their leaders have never discussed or acknowledged this loophole.

The loophole is an unintended oversight of a poorly thought-through doctrine that has been fiddled with and changed countless times over the decades by a leadership who did not fully think through all the implications of each change.

In fact, Jehovah’s Witnesses have a strong taboo against personally being involved in any killing. They refuse military service, are not supposed to take employment that requires carrying a weapon (such as an armed police officer or security guard), are prohibited from learning martial arts or boxing  and so forth.

However Jehovah’s Witnesses do have a strong culture of being prepared to sacrifice a loved one now in order to preserve their chances at eternal life. The most infamous example of this is their strict policy, enforce from the top down, of refusing blood transfusions for their children and loved ones, which they believe to be a sinful act that could rob a person of God’s favour and thus earn death at Armageddon.

Better to die in God’s favour and be resurrected, they reason, than save yourself now by displeasing him and losing your eternal life. As a result many children have either been allowed to die (or subjected to medical treatments that were far less effective and thus failed) by their parents out of a genuine sense of love. Watchtower has even issued literature celebrating the sacrifices that were made.

Additionally, Watchtower also glorifies Witnesses who give up their lives rather than make even the slightest religious compromise over some seemingly insignificant matter. The awful accounts of Witnesses being tortured and murdered in Malawi over seemingly insignificant technicalities that even Witnesses in other countries were not beholden to illustrates how deeply ingrained this martyrdom culture is in the religion.

Put simply, the concept of sacrificing your life or the life of a loved one in order to preserve their eternal salvation is a key and core part of the Witness mentality.

Nonetheless, the killing in Keego is highly unusual. In fact it is the first time I have ever heard of such a tragedy taking place motivated by the loophole, and most Witnesses are probably just as horrified by it as you are. It’s clear that depression and mental health issues (no doubt severely worsened and perhaps even caused by a decade of shunning) had a significant part to play in the unfolding tragedy. You are no more likely to be murdered by a JW than you are by any other member of the general public.

However, the unavoidable fact is that if one extrapolates the JW doctrine on Armageddon and resurrection to their logical conclusion, then Lauren Stuart was correct in her understanding of how to get her family through the apocalypse and into paradise. In recent years, the organisation has also indicated that those who commit suicide may also be resurrected (something they previously indicated was not possible) so Lauren probably felt she had a good chance of being re-united with her family on the other side. The Witnesses believe that death pays for all your sins, so the sin of three murders would be paid for by her own death, allowing her to be resurrected with a clean slate.

And even if she felt that her own resurrection was not possible, wouldn’t you sacrifice your eternal life if it meant the chance of paradise for your loved ones?

The Tragedy of POMI

There is a phrase sometimes used amongst former Witnesses to describe a person who has left the religion, or has been thrown out of it for some transgression of its vast web of controlling and detailed regulations, but who still believes some or all of the core doctrines.

It’s a simple acronym:

POMI.

Physically Out, Mentally In.

It is possibly one of the most traumatic and damaging situations an exJW can find themselves in.

Imagine living every day convinced that, at any moment, an angry and vengeful God is going to wreak supernatural destruction upon the world around you. Your non JW workmates, friends, even your non-JW family will all die screaming, a gruesome death that JW leader Tony Morris gloatingly described in a public address as looking like “split open like hotdogs on a barbique.”

You too will suffer the same death. Nothing you do now has any meaning. Any career, any relationship, any life you build for yourself will be swept away in a tide of blood and pain. It might be tomorrow. In fact it could be an hour from now.

Or a minute.

This is the life of a POMI. Going from day to day, waiting for everything and everyone they love to be brutally torn apart by a genocidal God. When one understands this, one can see how a depressed, desperate and mentally troubled mother, under the influence of badly thought-through and gruesome end-of-the-world religious dogma, was driven to a final act of murder and suicide through the tragic motivation of love.

If you know someone who is POMI, please understand what they might be going through, and if you can, please encourage them to investigate the truth of their beliefs.

JWFacts.com is an excellent resource for calmly and rationally debunking Jehovah’s Witness doctrines with carefully fact-checked and referenced evidence.

And if you are someone who has left the religion or been thrown out of it, but still believes the doctrines, our heart goes out to you. There is no need for you to suffer the constant anguish and dread of a looming Armageddon. There is good and reliable evidence to prove that these gruesome teachings are wrong.

Knowledge is power. Truth fears no enquiry.

Start the journey to becoming free at JWFacts.com.

JW Survey founder and senior editor Lloyd Evans has also discussed this tragic loss of life on his youtube channel here.

 

 

Follow me on twitter @covertfade

Footnote* The religion has on occasion implied that a few people who die before Armageddon are so wicked that they will never get a resurrection. For example, they include Judas Iscariot in this category. These people are referred to as going to Gehenna, which JW’s believe symbolises everlasting death, which is also where those killed at Armageddon go.

However, the religion teaches that most of the people who die go to “Sheol,” which is a Hebrew word for the grave, and that everyone in sheol will get resurrected. Since even some of the most evil, rebellious people in the Bible are stated to have gone to “sheol” (such as the rebellious Sons of Korah, who according to the Bible were executed by God himself) they reason that almost every human who has ever lived will probably get resurrected. The full discussion of this doctrine is very complex, is constantly being revised by the leadership, and is beyond the scope of this article, but the summary I have given boils it down to bullet points that apply to 99% of cases.

 

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121 Responses to Shunning, Depression and “Armageddon Loophole” lead to tragic JW Murder/Suicide.

  1. Chiafade says:

    If you are POMI you aren’t an “exJW”. Many of those are the ones found vehemently defending the org on social media like YouTube. Being in their situation is indeed tragic. They are in one of the best positions possible to be out and stay out by means of awakening from their indoctrination.

    Sad that so many can be disfellowshipped for YEARS and still believe watchtower BS. RIP to this family who’s lives were cut short as a direct result of cult/religious indoctrination.

    • JBob says:

      MOPI is worse, I think–mentally out, physically in due to the high-control mechanism of the Watchtower and its sphere of influence.

      • Ricardo says:

        @JBob, I don’t believe that it is worse to be MOPI. At least you can sit there and laugh inside at the nonsense our brothers and sisters are believing and commenting. And play cards on your mobile phone.

        • Peter tyhe Digger says:

          A better game is NLB (No-Love-Bingo). Yoiu have a scorecard and you get points for each empty loveless expression, the emptier = the more points. Here is the scorecard.
          Love of the Brothers = 5. Loving Congregation = 4. Be Hospitable = 8. Hello, how are you = 1 (scores 3 if followed by I’m fine, how are you, then conversation peters out). We really care – 3. A Loving meeting = 4. Feast = 10 (if no actual food appears). Open up our homes = 7. Care for the elderly = 12. Meal together = 7 (if no such mealmaterialises within a week). Score 144,000 poonts to get through Armaggeddon without ever sullying the inside of your home with the presence of another bro/sis.

  2. Another excellent article, Covert, pointing out the sad results of the cult.

    Many years ago, in my online “Love Course” for Jehovah’s Witnesses, I wrote about what you’ve aptly named the Armageddon Loophole, but falsely concluded that no Witness would ever take it seriously: https://smmcroberts.net/religion/fundamentalism/watchtower/course/love/c05.html

    Let’s just hope that this was a one-off aberration, and not that it leads other Witnesses to the same horrible acts, while still revealing to them the fallacy of their doctrine taken to its logical conclusion.

  3. Tipper says:

    A horrible tragedy! I am sickened by what this cult does to people and their families

    This type of thinking often becomes a concern during custody battles. I remember being warned by a lawyer that I should be concerned not only for my own safety but my kids after he interviewed my JW ex. He confirmed my concerns that my ex believed my kids would be better off dead and resurrected into paradise than living with me.

    Thankful after many difficult years my kids are all grown and away from the organization. They see if for the cult that it is!

  4. Gwen says:

    Religious cults like this target OUR FEAR OF DEATH/END OF EXISTENCE or whatever our HUMAN FEARS are. It gets a foothold of control by taking advantage of our vulnerabilities. It’s like a bacterial infection, if you don’t kill the infection (scare mongering), it will linger until your immune system (rational thinking) is at it’s lowest then it invades.

    I found that when I left I needed to completely kill off the cult propaganda, face my personal fears then eliminate them from my thinking, especially when I was at my lowest patches.

    This personal epiphany came when my Therapist said that I’m resilient because I didn’t choose drugs or alcohol to deal with my grief (we were converts when our child died). When my reply to him was that I chose religion instead, it made me realise that I wasn’t facing my fear of death. I was replacing it with this fantasy paradise scenario, making myself high on an unreality, constantly chasing rainbows when my mind is trying to tell me how insane this whole belief system is.

    The cult sprukes on about keeping your life simple but it complicates your life with it’s layer upon layer of bullshit doctrines, rules, death threats & emotional blackmail.

    Walking away is a hard emotional road to go down. it’s like going through a fever when you’re body’s fighting a bacterial infection but after you’ve overcome it, you feel mentally & emotionally stronger.

    Well that’s how it worked for me to be truly free & heal mentally, emotionally & physically. It’s taken about 3 years to go through the healing process, it doesn’t happen overnight but I hope that this helps anyone reading this who is newly out & struggling.

  5. Markie says:

    A thought to ponder for all you people jumping on this tragedy. Who is Joyce Taylor? Is she really a close friend of this poor woman? Did she really talk to this woman? Can she really read this womans mind? Some of the things this Joyce Taylor said in other articles I read kind of sounds suspect to me. Sounds like she she has some kind of axe to grind like Covert Fade does. Nobody really knows why this woman killed her family and herself. But I guess it serves the purpose of disgruntled exJWs.

    • Chiafade says:

      Oh please stop trying to divert the conversation away from the obvious. Your red herring won’t work.

    • eyes opened says:

      It doesn’t really matter who Joyce Taylor is…there is enough supporting evidence to show a very strong connection between this horrific tragedy and Watchtower teachings to make it highly probable that those were the mother’s thought processes. Tie that in with other factors such as depression and you get your recipe for tragedy.

      This is incredibly sad…

      • JBob says:

        No there’s not enough evidence to leap to the conclusion that the Watchtower doctrine regarding a “fair chance” directly and solely contributed to Lauren’s decision to end her life and those of her family. Is there a note left by her explaining this explicitly? No, but we can deduce that persons who are “on the edge” emotionally and mentally, shunned, yet clinging to a belief system that abuses them, could take it to extreme measures. It could be expressed in amplifying certain beliefs, restrictions and practices (as often seen when break-off leaders start a following from the main sect–Branch Davidians as example); it could be expressed in obsessing over little doctrinal points regarding survival. Whenever the global socio-economic or political climate gets a storm, “straggler JW’s” catch a hurricane of concerns. Is this “it”? Is J* finally sending the big handkerchief to wipe earth clean? “I am going to the Memorial this year so I can get righteous, again.” They’re in a harsh situation too, because active JW’s are sometimes harsh to them, and former JW’s can be harsh to them.

        But, even if Lauren had believed in going straight to heaven, there’s no guarantee this family would not have suffered a murder-suicide. It’s a mental health issue not simply a religious belief issue. If anything, the Watchtower’s culture from years of denying the benefits of psychology and mental health diagnosis and treatment are the real contributing factors to this demise and tragedy. Even a shunned, d/f JW believer would cling to this belief that mental health treatment is a “sign of weakness”.

    • nullandvoidboy says:

      @Markie…..wow dude….you’re not some jw apologist are you? nahhhhh…stop trolling and use honest, common sense. So when when someone exposes untruth, you call it axe grinding?? Why not just call it FAKE NEWS…that phrase gets thrown about a lot, nowaday’s….a particular head of a country likes to throw that BS line out…..you probably believe that bird brains words too..

  6. All ex jws need to contact me. I held many positions in the jw cult. Free now. my telephone number is 954-448-7427 text me. My email is [email protected] and my website is scottwillwriteyourpaper.com yes I never listened to their teachings, i heard them but never accepted. From regular pioneer, to ministerial servant, to elder you name it, I held it. Don’t be depressed. Text me or email me for help.

  7. correction on my telephone number, it’s 954-558-7427

  8. Markie says:

    Covert, I really question your veracity. You should actually be ashamed of yourself. How can you say that “no doubt (shunning) severely worsened or even perhaps caused” her suicide and the killing of her family. She obviously was a very sick person and we have no idea why this woman did what she did. I have had numerous clients over the year that have had family members commit suicide and they had no idea why the person did it. But you know by reading a few quotes form an obviously disgruntled exJW that shunning played a role in this tragedy. WOW.

    • outandabout says:

      yes, Markie. The suicide note needs authenticating and if she did indeed say that killing her family was the only way to save them, well, saving them from what needs to be determined.

  9. messenger says:

    @Ricardo,

    If your congregation kicks you out because of your troubles; and if you want to go to another denomination, then don’t worry too much if the new denomination is part of Babylon the Great. Because you’re already in Babylon the Great. Christ preached inside Babylon the Great. That’s why he was killed. You too can follow that example. No matter what happens stay strong. A religion is not God. Rev 18:24

    • Ricardo says:

      @@Messenger, I have pondered the same idea. However, I would prefer to study with witnesses who don’t know me and get baptized again, and continue to be a pain in the butt to our abusive leadership.

    • Big B says:

      @ Messenger;

      Firstly, great article Covert Fade!

      The loophole is obvious to any thinking person. Anyone dying BEFORE being destroyed by God at Armageddon is entitled to at least a “resurrection on Judgement”, according to Jehovah’s Witness doctrine. I personally know of at least two suicides, one last month, by a Jehovah’s Witness who had said how depressed he was and had nothing to live for. Sad but true! This same person told a brother that he would not be at the hall next week and that brother thought he was going on VACATION without further inquiry! Sure enough he did himself in to the dismay of all, truly a tragic event. And the Witnesses claim that this servitude to a cult “is the best life ever”!?

      @ Ricardo;

      Messenger is SPOT ON! They are a member of Babylon the Great because they were riding the (U.N.) scarlet colored wild beast as a N.G.O. for ten years. Where do you find the harlot and what is she doing in the book of Revelation? She’s on the back of the scarlet colored wild beast, no? What does she do, she rides, and supports the beast. That is what the Watchtower society has claimed since BEFORE its 1963 publishing of “BABYLON the GREAT has Fallen, Gods Kingdom Rules”. Jesus Christ, they can’t follow or believe their own damn doctrines! What blatant hypocrisy!

      The angel in mid-heaven says “get out of her my people if you don’t want to share in her plagues.” What you see now is Jehovah removing this twisted cult from the world scene for blasphemy and misrepresenting his name,period. There will be no salvation for this cult or those supporting this abomination calling itself ‘God’s earthly Organization.’

      • JBob says:

        Uhm, guys, sounds like you’re holding onto their beliefs to view the world. Babylon the Great because they signed up with the UN? What in the heck are you talking about?

        Try finding an alternative answer for who is “the Harlot, Babylon the Great” and the Beast than the Watchtower’s.

        • messenger says:

          The important point is not who all those symbols is Revelation represent. When comparing WT teachings to Bible teachings it’s clear those teachings don’t match up. Overlap at certain points, but Bible teachings overlap at certain points with all teachings that involve morality.

          Where WT teachings don’t overlap on extremely important issues is what shows the organization is working against Christ’s kingdom. Christ said a house divided against itself cannot stand. WT condemns all other Christian denominations, separating its followers from all other Christian members, and in doing that WT works in opposition to Christ’s teachings about judging, mercy, forgiveness, and love. All the while WT makes its own rules on what it calls Christianity, rules that are unbiblical, predictions that are unbiblical, doctrines that are unbiblical.

          Compare that to Jesus’ behavior in the first century. Jesus did not go from sect to sect separating God’s people who were practicing Judaism even though they had different beliefs about spiritual truths. WT claims to follow Christ’s example, but it doesn’t in ways that work against his kingdom.

          Divide and conquer is such an effective military strategy that it’s known by most people of adult age, even those never having served in the military. What invisible power would be behind dividing Christ’s church, a demonic one, or a godly one?

          Christ preached full time for three and a half years with a purpose to bring people to God. If something more was necessary to do that than the messages he preached, don’t you think he would have told us? His main messages in order of their importance were:

          1, Believe in and follow him.
          2. Love one another and other people also.

          • nancytrimble58 says:

            Excellent points, Messenger. This hateful cult shows no love, just control and hate and fear mongering. They are as far as you can get as an example of Christ’s love. I would not even be surprised if the governing body are members of the illuminati, deep state, etc. They will be revealed and exposed for who they are, in fact they are already. Judgment starts in the house of God first. We are definitely in the end times, but it will not be as they think.

        • Ricardo says:

          @JBob, you are aware that Watchtower was affiliated to the UN as an NGO (one requirement of which was to promote the tenets of the UN) for a period of around 10 years, during the 1990’s, right? Until the Guardian newspaper reported it. Then suddenly Watchtower withdrew membership the very next day.

          • Big B says:

            @ Ricardo and messenger,

            Thanks for your replies to JBob, I couldn’t have said it better myself. But to his credit, I believe he was trying to point out that at different periods of time, since Revelation was written at the end of the first century, Babylon the Great as well as the beasts represented different things to Christians searching for signs of the end.

            All Christians have done this to prove that they were living in the last days; even during the Middle Ages as historian Barbara Tuchman reveals in her book “A Distant Mirror-The calamitous fourteenth century” back in 1978.

            Of course, my point was not whether the Watchtower is correct in its identification of Babylon the Great or its interpretations of Revelation but that, for whatever reason, they cannot follow their own admonitions to not have a part in this organization like the World Council of Churches and the rest of Christendom whom they condemn most vehemently.

            Thus my point of the Watchtower being hypocritical and showing a callous disregard to their members who to this day, eighteen years latter, do not know this information. Why? Because of the possible loss of more adherents thus the loss of more contributions!

            Whether the Watchtower is correct in its interpretations of Revelation or other end time prophecies remains to be seen. I personally think that they are incorrect, in fact I don’t believe that the “Great Crowd” of Armageddon survivors are even born yet. That’s how far off I believe Armageddon is.

            Take care,

            Big B

        • Big B says:

          @ JBob:

          I, personally speaking, am not holding on to any Watchtower teachings or beliefs especially those that deal with the prophetic/symbolic book of Revelation. Jehovah’s Witnesses have their interpretations (read:spin) of what the different symbols mean as, I’m quite sure, other denominations have as well. They certainly have produced an ample amount of critique on this subject as well as other prophetic books in the Bible.

          I don’t know if you have been around Jehovah’s Witnesses long enough to remember the many (years long) studies we had on the subject of “type” and “anti-type”. An example would be ancient Jerusalem being a type and Christendom being an anti-type or mirror of the type. Just as Jerusalem was destroyed by the Roman Legions Christendom, as a great part of Babylon the Great, will be destroyed by the United Nations as a prelude to Armageddon. Or so the Jehovah’s Witnesses said.

          Now, as of this writing, to my knowledge not a peep is mentioned on this subject. Why not? Probably this teaching has fallen out of favor or it was not understood by the rank and file to begin with. Thus the quiet descent into doctrinal oblivion with other Jehovah’s Witness nonsense and beliefs.

          However, I do give a certain amount of credit (begrudgingly) to the Catholic Church in this one regard. They don’t say a damn thing about the Revelation of John other than its a “mystery”, period. They do not concern themselves with Revelation or future prophetic fulfillment as most Adventist movements do. Adventism is only as old as the mid-19th century starting with the Millerites which divided after the “Great Disappointment” of October,1844. It was from this group the Seven Day Adventist movement and much later on the International Bible Students Association, with ‘Pastor’ Charles Taze Russell, originally came from.

          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Disappointment

          Which is why I don’t waste my limited lifetime on future fulfillment’s of Biblical prophecy or finding other representations of symbolic scarlet colored, beast riding, painted whores, or anything else. Why not?
          1. A limited lifetime on earth;
          2. A lack of true interest as I have no control of the future anyway;
          3. It would only be my opinion; one of many opinions out there;
          4. Knowing what the signs truly meant in Revelation would not benefit me by adding a nano-second to my current lifespan nor put a potato on my plate.

          I think it’s sufficient to say that following a modest Christian lifestyle is hard enough in today’s world without ‘muddying the waters’ with Adventist nonsense and specious speculations of ‘last day’ prophecies which do nothing but raise the hopes and aspirations of people only to once again be disappointed (read 1975, etc.).

          Take care,

          Big B

  10. MamaJane says:

    Anyone that has been df’d by jw’s and shunned can truly relate to this very sad story. I wish God would absolutely expose them and their lies! !!! Cults are so dangerous!

  11. Ricardo says:

    If your religion teaches you not to question, then your religion is hiding something from you.

  12. Hi Everyone,

    Regardless of who you are, JW, Ex-JW or never involved, please know help is available. Our brain is a powerful problem solving machine, but some “solutions” should never be pursued. Do not be afraid or ashamed to seek help.

    https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/hide-and-seek/201204/fighting-suicidal-thoughts

    From the article:

    Example of a safety plan

    1. Read through the list of positive things about myself.
    2. Read through the list of positive things about my life and remind myself of the things that have so far prevented me from committing suicide.
    3. Distract myself from suicidal thoughts by reading a book, listening to classical music, or watching my favorite film or comedy.
    4. Get a good night’s sleep. Take a sleeping tablet if necessary.
    5. Delay any suicidal attempt by at least 48 hours.
    6. Call Stan on (phone number). If he is unreachable, call Julia on (phone number). Alternatively, call my healthcare professional on (phone number), or the crisis line on (phone number).
    7. Go to a place where I feel safe such as the community centre or the sports centre.
    8. Go to the Emergency Room.
    9. Call for an ambulance.

    Please take care everyone!
    -Randy
    ps. I would add one thing to safety plan. If you own a gun and are having suicidal thoughts, consider having a friend take the gun away and lock it up for a while. In the US our gun-related suicide rate is twice as high at our homicide rate, which itself is 7 to 8 times higher than Canada.

  13. sirius says:

    Covert Fade, thank you! Tragic for sure but it needs to be exposed.

    There seems almost daily a deeply seated rot happening inside the kingdom of Jehovah Witness.

    No avoiding a pattern showing. Now, will there be a public statement from the GB?

    dogstar

  14. outandabout says:

    messenger, old buddy. I’ve noticed an earlier post to me. Yes, I did originally come here because of the blood issue because up until then I thought JW’s were just a bunch of harmless crazies. Not only did I soon learn different, that knowledge progressed to the realization that the whole religious scene is corrupt nonsense on a scale I never realized. Sure, there are people who experience comfort and joy from their belief but the number who receive abuse and death at the hands of either their own religion or from another religion is far too many and the price of belief is unacceptably high for something built on ‘feelings, not fact’ and it’s not belief I hate, it’s injustice. This injustice needs opposing in our everyday lives. You yourself give tacit support to injustice just by attending the Kingdom Hall and for not speaking out against bigotry and hate as portrayed by your pals the Westboro Baptists with their placards ‘Fags Die God Laughs’. You’re no different than those American Muslims who are happy to take all the advantages that America has to offer but cheer in their homes as the Twin Towers fall.
    Yes it is possible to un-convert a christian. Look at the people running this site and your new best mate Resister. I’m jealous. But anyway, I once asked Mum what it was that tipped her over into belief and she replied ‘because god said the earth hangs on nothing’. WTF! God also say’s the earth is suspended by enormous pillars and if I had of been around at the time…. I once shows her how WT was a cult and she was so shocked at the realization that she got fretful and jumped up going around the house opening and shutting windows saying ‘I’m in a cult!’ Next time I saw her they had brow beat her and wouldn’t talk about it. Another time I showed her the child abuse and same thing with the windows. ‘If it’s true I’m leaving!!’ Next time I saw her it was ‘oh, that’s everywhere these days’. Completely missing the fact that gods visible org should have been the ONLY one without abuse issues, not the highest. I leave her alone these days and she flatly refuses to donate, seeing that as a measure of goodness in her ‘church’. If only she knew.
    Now messenger….you say I don’t answer you questions. Not always but same with you. You won’t take up my generous bleach offer and you won’t mention teaching the Genesis account to children on animals spots and stripes and you flatly refuse to call WT a cult by dancing around the issue with a non answer. So here’s something else for you…..little Johnny comes to you – “please Sir, why does this diagram of a whale show small hip, thigh and shin bones?”. Do you reply –
    ‘That’s because god had a whole lot of leftover parts to get rid of, or –
    ‘God moves in mysterious ways’, or –
    ‘Satan put those there to confuse us to try and keep us from god’, or –
    ‘God put them there to test our faith’, or –
    ‘That’s hard physical evidence for Evolution, Johnny, That’s fact, not feeling, and that’s why fundamentalists are bricking themselves but the forward thinking religious organisations have quietly slipped it into their belief because they know that when your generation grows up they’ll know evolution and if they can’t keep in line with the upcoming generations they’re as dead as a dodo. Good on you for spotting that and don’t you let those fundamentalist teach you to externalize blame and to see things as plain right or wrong because that’ll mess with your head and set you up for confusion and ridicule later on’.

    • Markie says:

      Scientists think the small bones on a whale are for mating purposes…

      • outandabout says:

        that’s correct, Markie and there’s a lot more to it than that but I’m not going to write an essay. Perhaps the most extraordinary find is that hippo’s are the closest living relative to the whale family (dna) and share many characteristics that suggest a divergence from a common ancestor.
        And I’m reminded of the claim that there are many scientists supporting intelligent design. I’ve been looking and have found none of note. Anybody can become a scientist by studying and answering the questions correctly but a person doesn’t actually become a scientist proper until they start producing, getting talked about and cited. They are employed mostly by religious institutions to prove intelligent design and to refute evolution and are getting nowhere. They’ve passed the exams but are essentially failed scientists because they produce nothing of note and so their peers are not listening. But, hey, if they find something, I’m all ears.

        • Hi Outandabout,

          Unfortunately I don’t think there is any easy way to resolve the Evolution vs Creation debate other than doing personal research from sources on both sides. Just reading JW material won’t get one far. For example the article “The Eye of the Peacock Mantis Shrimp” compares these biological eyes to a DVD player. Such comparisons are much more distracting than helpful. In both cases we know how each object arrived in the world. One through a biological process of reproduction, growth and development, the other through a design and manufacturing process. These are clearly different processes wherein the DVD player embraces no possibility of evolutionary inputs.

          For me reading “Darwin’s Black Box” by Michael Behe followed by “Finding Darwin’s God” by Kenneth Miller made the difference. Behe argued for intelligent design, whereas Miller argued that not only are examples of ID flawed, what is known of the evolutionary process disallows them.

          I also suggest one take the time to do this. Find the first copy of “Zion’s Watchtower and Herald of Christ’s Presence” from 1879 and read it. Then obtain a copy of Darwin’s “On the Origin of Species” and read that. Darwin’s book was released in 1859. Thus there is only 20 years between these two.

          http://jv.somet.dk/tekster/WT_1879_07_01.pdf

          Upon reading this material one is struck by the sincerity of the authors (Russell, et al) and their determination to expound on Christian doctrine. It is kind of funny to see the subject “THE SODOMITES” explored. Whether or not such people would be resurrected has gone back and forth within JW theology.

          http://darwin-online.org.uk/converted/pdf/1861_OriginNY_F382.pdf

          For me reading Darwin was amazing! First one notices the contrast with Russell. Whereas Russel makes repeated dogmatic statements of “truth” Darwin shows a tremendous determination to let the evidence at hand speak. Exploring paths at such great length it can be difficult to read. He also reports on several experiments he conducted.

          Why death and suffering?

          As per Russell, it is all part of the divine plan of salvation relating to Adam’s fall into sin. His theology is an improvement over Atheism, Calvinism and Arminianism because it accounts for all of God’s attributes.

          As per Darwin, death and suffering is the natural result of a system based on survival of the fittest. Such a system works when life forms are over-produced. This will of necessity subject them to the problem of limited resources and predation. In Darwin’s world, dogs die for the same biological reasons as humans.

          Which view is correct? Within these groups, which tend to be more honest with less tendency towards logical fallacies or statements of half-truths? I’ve reached my conclusion several years ago and thus far have not seen any thing to change my mind. However, each must decide for themselves. The actual truth and facts don’t care what we believe — they just sit there.

          Cheers,
          -Randy
          ps. As to the subject at hand. Since suicide involves brain function and there is much that is not known, it would be extremely difficult to know for certain the causes. However, from notes and actions of those in the past (think of People’s Temple) it is safe to conclude religious thought do at times play a significant role. All we can do is mourn for those lost and try to be of some comfort to those who survive.

    • messenger says:

      “You’re no different than those American Muslims who are happy to take all the advantages that America has to offer but cheer in their homes as the Twin Towers fall.”

      Above is a quote directed at messenger from outandabout.

      messenger’s response:

      Yes outandabout, I, messenger, am to blame for every bad act ever committed, not only those in this universe, but those in all parallel universes as well. Now, take your medications please, and get a good nights sleep. No one here will harm you. You can hold onto your beliefs about me, the Bible, and God. And please talk to a caring counselor before you drink that bleach you’ve been writing about for so long.

      A whale skeleton to me is not evidence to support what you preach, in that it does not prove evolution. Being shown the future and reading that many other people have shared that type of experience is evidence. It’s a form of evidence you have not experienced. You argue topics you know nothing about.

      • messenger says:

        “Take all the advantages America has to offer.” I am one of the advantages America has to offer. I work for the government. How about you outandabout? What advantage do you presently perform for your country other than pay taxes?

        • outandabout says:

          I wasn’t implying you were personally responsible for every bad act ever committed, messenger and I’m sorry if my language is a bit blunt at times. I know you believe you are doing good but there’s a bigger picture. Let’s look at when we go to Walmart or wherever and buy up cheap goods and never give a thought to the poor wretches somewhere who worked in a sweat shop somewhere and received virtually nothing for their efforts. We are in effect are supporting slavery. Now, you enjoy your faith in a safe country but do you ever give a thought to the suffering done in it’s name elsewhere? What about the Catholic priest who enjoys his position in the West and has a high old time living in comfort and worries not about hell, etc, but if one happens to be poor and ignorant in a third world country, every detail of damnation is heaped upon those people. The point is, we in the West have a wonky picture.
          Two years ago I noticed a book by Christopher Hitchens entitled ‘God is not Great – How Religion Poisons Everything’. The title was too strong and I didn’t believe it. I still think the title is a bit strong and belief may not poison everything, but it poisons far too much and it infects us in our most basic integrity and the price of belief is far too high.
          Of course the whale skeleton is not the final word in evolution and I wasn’t suggesting it was. It’s just part of a growing mountain of evidence. There may be three steps forward and one backwards, or even four or five backwards, but since Darwin, the line on the graph of evidence supporting evolution has been on an upward trend and getting steeper. The fact that the Catholics are willing to work evolution into their belief speaks volumes. So much more than you are willing to admit or even think about and I can understand that. But do you want to be like the WT who printed ‘it’s never been proven that germs cause disease’. How stupid does that look now?
          It’s not my fault, messenger.

          Peace.

  15. ruthlee says:

    So sad for this family Jws win again in breaking up yet another family . They do delight in doing the devil’s job . Shunning is the best way to discard broken people. I hope the trophy makers sent a copy of this families death certificates framed to put up in their little office when they next decide a death policy for blind sheep to follow. It is sick sad mad and rotten to the core This family are just collateral damage to them . In fact the warwick boys don’t even know their name until they read about this tragedy in print. So glad I am POMO and do not suffer from FOMO. not very cheerful today folks Ruthlee

  16. joe says:

    When I was making my exit from the cult, I said to a couple JWs (individually at different times) that if we really believed what the org said we’d be going to door to door shooting people in the face, since that’s far more likely to get people into paradise than preaching to them. Every one that I talked to acknowledged that and said they’d thought about it previously. Obviously it’s anecdotal and the JWs that I talked to about this were definitely far more intelligent than the average JW which may have something to do with it, but it does give some indication that maybe this loophole isn’t so well hidden from JWs as the article suggests.

  17. Lecia says:

    I used that “logical loophole” myself when discussing the behavior of some teens in the hall, telling the parents we might as well kill them to make sure they make it in. Now I’m horrified and embarrassed that I was so sucked into this cult to make such a horrible statement.

    • fallingangel75 says:

      It’s just a really warped belief system. I feel terrible that I once genuinely believed shunning my friends and family was proof I loved them and it would help them return to Jehovah.

  18. Elle says:

    Really great article Covert, thank you. I definitely think this ‘Armageddon loophole’ is in the subconscious of every JW. I have often heard parents of children who leave the truth say that the best thing that could happen now is for their child to die. They say they would obviously be sad but they would also be relieved.
    I even remember feeling a little relieved when my grandparents died as they were not JWs so I was happy that they would at least have a resurrection as their death had paid for their sins (both were good people…their only ‘sin’ being that they weren’t JWs!!)
    Just another example of the way JWs minds are twisted and controlled by the doctrine and teachings of the GB. It’s so tragic coz the vast majority of them are just very good people who are trying their best in life and are too sucked in to see it for what it really is. My heart goes out to all POMI people and their suffering.

    • Deborah Rush says:

      That many witnesses conclude that people have a chance at future life,by dying before Armageddon,is a common undercurrent,among them.How do I know?I attended 6 usa halls,and visited,in widespread travels to about 12 (usa)others+1 overseas,1979-2015.)I began my fade after..thank God I’m out and away,but still have some lesser PTSD symptoms,from the traumas-suffered from within.I heard-after every funeral -one or more comments,just like the horrible-twisted ‘deductions’ outlined above..a quiet,apologetic at times,yet ALWAYS ‘relieved’tone..”well at least we know now they’ve got that chance in the 2nd resurrection”.and anyone(JW) hearing it in front if me would nod in thankful agreement.Covert Fade,this is truly an”end result”deduction,Thankfully it isn’t acted upon(like in this poor lady’s murders),like it could be..but then,how many single-suicides ARE,as a result??1 most disturbing addition here:yesterday I looked on”jw(dot)net,a witness’talk site’.The comments(from most)revealed a callous,judgemental,unloving regard,with quite a few totally-disbelieving the Newspaper coverage!”lies”.”fake news”.”persecution”(of jw’s,them,as a result)..slur-attacks,on the friend who read the suicide note..etc.I feel more sorry for these living ones who swallow the org.’s lines totally..without thought.”1984″come-true.

  19. ScotWm says:

    The “Armageddon loophole” gives the resurrection hope to victims of mass murdering leaders such as Adolph Hitler, Mao Zedong, Joseph Stalin and Jim Jones. Is it really a loving provision to kill people before Armageddon? If so, the greatest murderers in history have saved more people than the Watchtower cult ever will. What a loving provision!

  20. Bridget says:

    I have quite a nice story to tell. JWs nearly killed me with their unlawful judicial system, making false accusations. My husband couldn’t cope with the stress so went off with a friend of mine (long story). We got divorced and I lost my health, my home and belongings and ended up homeless. I left the JWs. They claimed I repudiated my faith. I didn’t but repudiated all their unchristian ways. I was shunned.

    However, I am not unhappy at all despite ill health. I have a lot of friends and after some years I now have somewhere reasonable to live. I write letters to the organization and the occasional one to relatives who don’t speak to me, outlining the unlawful nature of their judicial system and stating that I want to save their lives because they are disobeying Jehovah. I’m preaching, if you like, that being like the scribes and Pharisees is really not good.

    The nice ending to this story is that the woman who went off with my husband visited me the other day to see if I was all right. Apparently she had had a most awful time with health issues and so on but it had all worked out in the end. It is my belief and a lesson for me that God had forgiven her some not very nice things and it looks like I have another friend. God is much nicer than Witnesses paint him.

    OK, I’d much rather that people with tendencies like Hitler are not going to survive the end, but it seems to me that there are an awful lot of people who will survive, witnesses or not. Please do not commit suicide!

  21. Resister says:

    Thanx for the update on that story, CF. Very heavy. Gruesome stuff. Like I alluded to before, there’s no longer any chance of watchtower concealing themselves. Left, right, and center, they are constantly coming out into the open. This is a story the public cannot, and is not, ignoring.
    I hope the watchtower gets exactly what it deserves.
    They drive you “crazy”, then discourage seeking psychiatric help, because that would be a sign of “spiritual weakness”. What a joke. A real Catch-22 situation. Pure bullying tactics. Imagine someone kicking you in the crotch over & over again, then laughing at you and calling you a weakling when you inevitably fall over. To all High & Mighty JWs who believe YOU are strong, hear this loud & clear: You are anything but strong. What you are is numb, jaded, and quite possibly DEAD inside. And hey Johnny, that is NOT the same as being strong. Survivors are strong. You are victims.

  22. Donald the Enlightened Guru of the Known Universe says:

    Messenger, do you suffer from any kind of chronic joint or arthritic pain at all?

    Markie, my child, if you use the expression “disgruntled exJW” 1,000,000 times, you shall receive a special prize!

    • messenger says:

      Please tell us Donald, master of the universe of your own mind, are you a disgruntled ex-JW? Why no answer? Cat got your tongue?

      I read there was once a commenter on this site that used entrapment to get the real email address of a fellow commenter. Once he had that he threatened to tell that commenter’s elders if he did not turn himself in for speaking against “Jehovah’s organization.” So, Donald, that wasn’t you, was it?

    • Markie says:

      Thanks you disgruntled ex JW. I will take bit coins.

      • Donald the Superexalted Master of the Known Universe says:

        Mookie, you seem confused.
        Do you feel dizzy?

        Blessings to all. 🙂

        • Markie says:

          Donald the big cheese of the disgruntled exJW universe: It seems to me that your transposing yourself with me. From what your posting it seems that the world is swirling around your head.

          May I suggest you go to the elders, they are experts at helping those with diseased minds. Remember to bake them some cookies.

          • Ricardo says:

            @Markie, is ‘going to the elders ‘ really good advice? These untrained men who believe they are giving good advice but who are full of excuses when it becomes clear they have misread the situation will be sure to bugger up his life.

      • nullandvoidboy says:

        Hey Markie…..what’s you’re position in bethel? Are you the troll or monkey with wings, the the bloated servant have? You do their bidding and try to trap people who have left the borg? Sad you have no real human depth…..you’re JUST a troll

  23. Resister says:

    messenger, old buddy, you think you’re pretty clever. You just came dangerously close to Libel. That’s right, genius, you just obliquely accused someone of attempted Blackmail. I would say you’re in kind of a gray area right now. We ALL read it. There’s no way to talk your way out of this one. It would be kinda like me saying something like, “Hey, messenger, you’re not a child molester, are you?” Of course, with the Nudge Nudge, Wink Wink implied. Way to go man. You’ve really outdone yourself this time. If I were you, I would start being REAL careful about the words that exit my mouth (or keyboard) from now on, my dear old friend. BTW, no need to dive into the Law journals and start quoting statutes and legal technicalities to me. Not interested. I know enough. If you do, it will be for others’ benefit, ’cause I won’t be reading it (unless I’m constipated). And don’t try to tell me this doesn’t scare you. He who spreads fear lives in fear. Crawl back into your hole. You’ll be safer there. It’s an awfully big world.

    Heyyyyyyyyy, Markie, ma Main Mannn! Better watch your back! It looks like messenger is now in the running for Guru Donald’s 1,000,000-“disgruntled exJW” Cracker Jack prize for you special people. If I was you, I would whip out that keyboard right now & start typing! If you wanna beat messenger, you’s gonna hafta type until your fingers catch fire!!!

    Now for my ACTUAL comment. lol Drum roll please……….
    OK, I totally get that the average person is NOT more likely to be killed by a JW or a POMI than by someone else. But WT is a mentally-diseased cult with 8,000,000 adherents. This is just another ridiculous threat to public safety and security we are now forced to deal with. As if we don’t have enough on our plate already.

    • Jack says:

      ‘Another ridiculous threat to public safety and security we are now forced to deal with’. Who is ‘We’? Are you on the frontlines dealing with this personally?

      • Donald the Enlightened Guru of the Known Universe says:

        Jack, my enchanted child, do you watch the news at all? Or do you live in the same purple-haze-filled hole as “messenger”? You seem very confused. Many people these days are understandably concerned for their and their families’ safety and security. But I suppose you don’t give a damn about that. After all, you are one of those disgruntled CURRENT JWs who visit this site, and who believe they are somehow under “Yahweh”‘s protection. Is it really so? I mean, has your automobile ever been towed while in service? Have you ever been in an auto accident? How about flying? I forget. Is that allowed? Doesn’t the bible condemn taking unnecessary risks? Aren’t you afraid of flying? You condemn homosexuality. Has your heterosexuality been a protection? Or have you ever contracted a sexually-transmitted infection? And how is your general health, my child? Do you find yourself experiencing itching in strange places?

        May the blessings of the Blue Aura be with you all, my children.

        • Donald the Master of the Known Universe says:

          Messenger, thank you for the promotion from Guru to Master of the Known Universe. 🙂

          It seems that “Yahweh” is really not much of a protection of any sort. I hear that the members of the Governing Body of Jehovah’s Witnesses suffer from severe itching as well as bouts of madness.

          Blessings.

    • messenger says:

      So file the suit. Malicious prosecution is waiting in the wings. If you have enough money to sue, maybe I can put some of your money in my pocket. Go for it.

  24. Doc Obvious says:

    If you’re having suicidal thoughts or attentions, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 (US), or visit the following web site: https://suicidepreventionlifeline.org/.

    If you’re having other mentally stressing issues, please contact a counselor that specializes in such areas. Another web site at https://www.healthcentral.com/article/how-do-i-get-mental-health-services-with-no-money-and-no-insurance.

    Not everything is cured by reading the Bible, or thinking of paradise.

  25. messenger says:

    @ Randy,

    Again Randy you should see fulfillment of Gen 3:15. All a Christian has to say is “Christ’s kingdom saves,” and the werewolves start foaming at the mouth like rabid dogs. See Rev 22:15

    • Hi Messenger,

      [you should see fulfillment of Gen 3:15]

      “And I will put enmity between you and the woman and between your offspring and her offspring. He will crush your head, and you will strike him in the heel.” (NWT)

      Step away for a moment from any JW or Christian bias on this verse. Doing so is appropriate because this verse was written long before Christian era. To suggest this verse has a prophetic tone is appropriate, since it is obviously forward looking.

      Here are the actors:

      “I” = “Jehovah” (see prior verse. We must be in the “J” section of Genesis here)
      “you” = “serpent” (see prior verse)
      “woman” = “Eve” (see verse 20)

      Thus the most direct thing we can say about this verse is the J-source Genesis author here is simply stating a future relationship between mankind and serpents. There would be an enmity between the two. While humans can indeed crush serpents in the head, it is noted that serpents, being low to the ground, strike at the heel.

      Wait! What the heck? Is that all this verse means? Yes, mostly. Strictly speaking there is nothing in the text that demands we go further. Of course many have expanded this into a metaphor and assigned new identities to the actors. Just how far can one go before we are simply taking over a text that doesn’t belong to us — a sort of ego-centric misappropriation?[1] We can go some distance, but nothing even getting close to Christian interpretation. The original author lived long before the Christian era in an world where venomous snakes really killed people. Seeing these creatures as having some supernatural ability would not be surprising.

      Since Genesis is an origin-of story (the version we know is blended from a few sources) it would be reasonable to believe there could be a bit of metaphor in the identify of the serpent. Almost all human concepts of the supernatural involve good balanced against evil forces (Jehovah/Satan, Vishnu/Kali, Jedi/Sith, etc). Thus if we see the serpent as being more than literal snakes, that would be reasonable.

      However if one gets into death of Jesus being involved and the “woman” being “God’s heavenly organization,” all that is going on is one is making faith claims out of thin air. In so doing, they’re also asking one to believe the text had no substantial meaning for many centuries.

      [All a Christian has to say is “Christ’s kingdom saves,” and the werewolves start foaming at the mouth like rabid dogs]

      Claiming persecution of Christians fulfills prophesy is problematic. While it is true Christians have been persecuted, it is generally true of all faiths at one time or another. It is also true that Christians have been the persecutors. JWs, for example, via Awake!, have fanned the flames of animosity and ignorance towards Atheists by equating them with the Khmer Rouge. Could it be Atheists are one of the most disliked group? Here is Gallup on voting for USA president:

      “PRINCETON, NJ — While more than nine in 10 Americans would vote for a presidential candidate who is black, a woman, Catholic, Hispanic, or Jewish, significantly smaller percentages would vote for one who is an atheist (54%) or Muslim (58%).” (June 2012)

      We can hardly consider this question for the modern era without noting that Jews, during the holocaust, stand out as one of the most persecuted religious/ethnic groups.

      I’ll leave Rev 22:15 and a final comparison to predictive power of scientific theory to another post.

      Cheers,
      -Randy
      [1] Such ego-centric misappropriation is common theme in new religious movements. Taking existing text and reinterpreting it to apply exclusively to the new group, specific individuals or events of the group or their perceived opposition. The Heaven’s Gate group for example saw the resurrection of the two witnesses in Revelation 11 as a form of extraterrestrial application. The Youtube series ExGileadMissionary is now 9 years old, but does a great job of illustrating just how self-serving such interpretations get within JW missionary training.

      • outandabout says:

        That last paragraph is the one for me, Randy, especially the term ‘ego-centric. They’re all ‘the one’, aren’t they, but are too tied up with being special and exclusive and right and always believing that they will be the ones to witness ‘the end’ because to us, all of us, nothing is and ever will be as special as being alive. Now is a very special time and the only time that matters. They have the answer so why would they bother researching or thinking or realizing that every day since Christs death the ‘signs’ have been ‘visible and obvious’ and there have been groups of people ‘witnessing’ these signs and it’s been ‘now is the time’ for centuries. Proof of that is the endless stream of End of World and coming of Christ prophesy’s since the death of Christ. These ‘signs’ were there from shortly after Christ’s death until today and will be there tomorrow and forever into the future. Show me a biblical prophesy with any clout and I’ll show you one from Nostradamus which would get scoffed at by any fundamentalist.
        Ego-centric.

        Are you at all suggesting that Genesis was in part plagiarized?

        Tell you what….those Apostles of Jesus’s must be starting to look pretty old by now after being alive for 2000 yrs awaiting His return. I reckon if you were to line them up with E.T., you wouldn’t be able to tell the difference.

        • Hi Outandabout,

          [Are you at all suggesting that Genesis was in part plagiarized?]

          No, I don’t think so. I generally believe the documentary hypothesis is correct. This view posits the Genesis we read today is composed of several original sources that were merged together. The clues for this are in the text itself.

          We know the Kingdom of Israel split after the time of Solomon into a north (“Israel”) and south (“Judah”) division. The groups are related but would develop slightly different religious concerns. Assyria attacks the north. This would cause a flow of refugees south. Then years later in 587 Babylon attacks the south. A group of Jews with religious views go into exile to Babylon for 50 years, where they encounter additional religious stories. In 537 Cyrus allows them to return.

          It is in this post-exile period the OT portion of the Bible we know today takes shape. An editor(s) takes on the task of merging variant copies of what the community feels are holy scripture.

          This is not actually that different to how a master text is prepared from all available extant manuscripts today. Textual experts cross reference as many as possible to isolate errors and remove them to arrive at a refined text.

          For Genesis there is the J, D, E and P sources. Think Jehovah/Elohim/Deuteronomy/Priestly. Let me inject this disclaimer: I am not a Bible scholar and some of the nuances of this hypothesis I am not conversant with. Rather it is the general idea and more obvious clues that I find interesting.

          To see this work in the text notice Genesis 1:1 to 2:3 uses “God” (E source) and at 2:4 it switches to “Jehovah” (J source). Also notice 2:3 brings the creation story to a close, then 2:4 begins to another creation story with a different focus.

          Cheers,
          -Randy
          ps. See “Who Wrote the Bible” by Richard E. Friedman

    • Hi Messenger,

      [See Rev 22:15]

      “Outside are the dogs and those who practice spiritism and those who are sexually immoral and the murderers and the idolaters and everyone who loves and practices lying.” (NWT)

      I assume you’re making this reference to follow your “like rabid dogs” comment. This verse is a form of contrast between blessings (see prior verse 14) for the faithful compared to those who don’t win God’s favor (verse 15 here). Such constructs may be understandable, but unfortunately often have a negative influence in our world. It tends reinforce a them vs us.

      Scientific theory can be “prophetic” in that it too can make predictions. A theory with great predictive power is considered a good theory. However the pursuit of knowledge via religion compared to science is different. Because of this, Steven Gould argued for NOMA, however Richard Dawkins argued against it.

      NOMA stands for “Non-overlapping magisteria.” Whereas science seeks to understand the facts of the natural world, religion concerns itself with values and morals. To Gould the domains don’t overlap.

      The evolution of the whale has been mentioned in this thread. Based on DNA and dating evidence we know life began in the water and only later made it to land and could use atmospheric oxygen. If this view is correct then we can make some predictions about any life we find that lives in the water yet breathes atmospheric oxygen. First we can conclude such life is out of its evolutionary mind! The whole setup of the animal should look nuts! Water is made out of hydrogen and oxygen, so why not just use it directly? Fish do! Alas, evolution is blind and proceeds without specific direction or purpose. It is only a system that rewards survival through adaptation. So despite all the crazy adaptations for air-breathing land animal to survive in the ocean little by little it will surely happen if each minute adaptation results in greater survival. Being a breast feeding mammal in salt water is not ideal, but so what. If it can be made to work then such a creature could exist. Having legs form during fetal development only to have them retract before birth — again okay. Such structures reused for some other function, like mating, again, no problem. It is just what the theory of evolution predicts.

      Will the theory of evolution convinced a committed creationist? Probably not. The predictions it makes for large animals are long range. To “see” the evidence of these predictions from the past we have to interpret evidence and lots of it! If we are not experts then we must rely on those who are. Alas, we must then decide who is telling us the truth about this subject. Is it Michael Behe or Kenneth Miller? Is it Richard Dawkins and Steven Gould or Ken Ham? After lots and lots of reading and consideration I reached the conclusion, that I was actually very reluctant to reach. The theory of evolution is the only fact-based scientific theory that explains how life on earth changes over time. That all life is related and has a common ancestor is the very reason why we can study mice to learn about cancer in humans. It is the reason why farmers sow both pest-resistant and non-pest-resistant corn in their fields.

      Cheers,
      -Randy

      • outandabout says:

        Hi Randy, why I asked your thoughts on the possibility of plagiarism was because of the possibility of ancient knowledge making it into the bible and then being claimed as having originated from the bible. One example is the Greeks having put forward the notion of atoms and when I search ‘scientific facts in the bible’, I see the bible claiming atoms as it’s own idea and therefore of divine origin. And there’s more, which at the moment I can’t be bothered looking into but thought maybe you had.

        Cheers.

  26. Umuhakanyi says:

    I find the research “The Mental Health of Jehovah’s Witnesses” by John Spencer (1975) very informative. The paper is available on http://jwstudies.com/Mental_health_JWs_John_Spencer.pdf and should be reference number one when it dealing with Jehovah’s mind.

    John Spencer found that being a member of the Jehovah’s Witnesses faith may be a risk factor predisposing to a schizophrenic illness and recommends investigating whether pre-psychotic people are more likely to join the sect than normal people.

    Not all people have been brainwashed.

    • Markie says:

      Umuhakanyi, not sure how scientific this study is but I always thought that a lot of the people that listen to the JWs at the doors are people that need help in some way or another. They are looking for something in their lives and that’s what and makes them listen. So I think a lot of them are damaged goods to begin with.

      • outandabout says:

        speaking from observing and understanding my own family, Markie, I would tend to agree. For them it wasn’t so much as finding God, but finding like minded people. Love bombing works.

  27. Markie says:

    Ricardo,

    I guess you never say the elder video about the woman thinking of suicide. The elders talked her out of it and then she remember she made them cookies. It was meant to be sarcastic.

    But my advice in regards to elders is to go to them only if you want to make your problem bigger and known by the whole congregation.

  28. Resister says:

    What’s with the disgruntled JWs who visit this site? If they’re so happy in their “spiritual paradise”, why do they constantly feel the compulsion to come here? Weird. If they’re here conducting “theocratic warfare” against all the “mentally-diseased” apostates, what for? If their god “Jehova” really is the ruler of the universe, and if they really believe “Armageddon” is coming, what conceivable threat do apostates present to them, their faith, or their future? Seems to me like they have nothing to worry about. Are they trying to win us back? They’re not doing a very good job. Isn’t one definition of insanity doing the same thing over and over again and hoping for a different result?

    • messenger says:

      All readers as you acknowledge are not apostates. My guess based upon reading comments here is that most readers are not apostates. I believe that because at least 50% of those expressing their beliefs claim to be Christian; based on stats most readers do not comment here; and non-commenters are more likely to be JWs than the commenters are, because most JWs will not comment out of fear due to WT teachings.

      But you can easily check out Lloyds survey. It may give some indication while not entirely an accurate one indicating how many here are apostate. I don’t remember the term apostate being defined in his survey, so someone like me might have claimed that although I don’t think I’m a Christian apostate. I just don’t believe in WT teachings.

      Why do you write here, to scream apostate? What’s your purpose for dong so?
      Here you go, evolution, evolution, evolution, apostate, apostate, apostate!!! What good does that do? My guess in influencing your average reader on this site that type of comment is counter productive.

  29. messenger says:

    All regular readers have seen two different styles of verbal of attacks on Christians’ faith. One style represented by Resister, Donald, and Outandabout is a direct claim that all religion is harmful. And then they present some arguments to make a claim God does not exist, such as the shape of a whale’s skeleton.

    Another style claims, “I’m not attempting to destroy anyone’s faith,” and then whenever a Bible truth is shared for all to read on this site, no matter how straight forward and simple that truth is (e.g. faith in Christ is necessary for salvation) they ask, “is the really so,” (Gen 3:1) and then begin to offer alternative interpretations to simple scriptural messages. Similar to, “Is that really so?(followed by) You positively won’t die” put forth by Satan to Eve at Gen 3:1. That approach is the work of Randy who has claimed he is not here to influence your faith.

    Which attempt to influence a mind do you believe more effective?
    When Christ ran into either type of reasoning he offered brief responses and then moved on to find more receptive minds, knowing no one comes to him unless they have been drawn by his father.

    • outandabout says:

      messenger….you put forward your truth and others put forward theirs. This is a site of anonymity and no offense should be taken. God doesn’t exist so therefore it’s impossible for me to hate him and I don’t hate you as a christian. If you were down I’d extend a hand. What I do hate is injustice and I see you as promoting it as well as being a victim of your belief system.
      We’re entering a new age with or without you but please, try not to put people on the rack, throw them in the tower or burn them at the stake while it’s happening. You’ve done enough damage trying to keep the belief alive already and it’s time to try something else. Your god has recently seen ISIS try to bring Armageddon about by establishing a caliphate and Israel is trying to steal as much land as possible to get as many Jews into the promised land as possible so finally, they can be worthy of His return. This sort of crap has been going on for centuries. You fundamentalists are just gagging for death and destruction to overtake us and for you, it can’t happen soon enough and you’re not beyond giving it a hand and so paranoid about it all you are that you see ‘signs ‘ where there are none. Some people even believe they’ve been contacted by god and then can’t understand all the ridicule. It’s a sickness, it’s immoral and it’s the ultimate stupidity. It needs to stop. Sorry for your loss.

      • messenger says:

        You and your kind are always diversionary, claiming personal offense or what have you to change the topic. Exposure is the nature of my claim, as you have countlessly read, not personal offense. I believe all readers drawn by God can clearly see that you are exposed. On the other hand your followers, also of that seed (Gen 3:15), also fulfills its destiny in attaching itself to you in defense of both yours and their intention to defame God. Your end will be proportional to your works.

        Your motives are clear as are the wholes in your logic. Gen 3:15

        • outandabout says:

          messenger…..I’ve obviously confused you of my motives. My fault and I have no problem with that.
          For me, belief systems fall into two categories – the harmless and the harmful. An example of having a harmless belief system is the couple down the street who’ve taken to God for comfort upon the loss of a child. They’re distraught and numb with grief and don’t give a toss about the finer points of the teachings but just need something to hang onto. And then there’s the eighty three yr old widow who has lost almost everyone and turns up to church every Sunday to be greeted and have her hand held by the lovely Vicar who shows her genuine concern and warmth and she’s probably even in love with him. If I were to strip that away from those people I’ve feel guilty and ashamed.
          Then there’s the harmful type, of which you support. Watchtower is a fine example. Name me a organisation in the Western world that one is expected to literally die for? What sort of evil does it take to convince a person to over-ride their survival instincts and more or less commit suicide or allow a precious child to die? And, as you are aware, that’s just the tip of the iceberg. These belief systems need their necks standing on until they relent and only honest information from both inside and outside the teachings can make that happen. Debate must happen and everything needs to be laid bare and then let the people decide.
          Screaming dire warnings from the pulpit just won’t cut it anymore. Those days are gone. Where once religion had the upper had and told people what to do and think, that situation is being reversed. The church now is like a car salesman with a big insincere grin and a cheezy jacket and upturned palms asking the question “well, what do you want?”

          • Hi Outandabout,

            Very well said! For the most part discussions about beliefs are academic. What I believe about Genesis may or may not be interesting. But this article highlights sometimes beliefs can motivation action. That is when it becomes critical. A decision to accept or reject a blood transfusion, shun or not, etc — those have impact!

            Cheers,
            -Randy

    • Umuhakanyi says:

      Amazing! Can I have an idea on your IQ Score. Will you kindly explain this simple passage? (Numbers 31:14-18) . . .But Moses grew indignant at the appointed men of the combat forces, the chiefs of the thousands and the chiefs of the hundreds who were coming in from the military expedition. 15 Moses said to them: “Have you preserved all the females alive? 16 Look! They are the ones who by Baʹlaam’s word induced the Israelites to commit unfaithfulness toward Jehovah over the affair of Peʹor, so that the scourge came upon the assembly of Jehovah. 17 Now you should kill every male among the children and kill every woman who has had sexual relations with a man. 18 But you may keep alive all the young girls who have not had sexual relations with a man.

      I hope you won’t become a killer from your believing Bible is a word of God!!!

      • messenger says:

        I’m not interested in your comment enough to engage you in a discussion. See my responses to outandabout. Ditto to you.

    • Hi Messenger,

      [That approach is the work of Randy who has claimed he is not here to influence your faith.]

      Judging motivations is a complex business. Even reflecting on our own motivations can be tricky. But, yes, I post not to divorce you or anyone else of the faith they hold. As I’ve mentioned I too have faith. I admit I’m making a bet that God does not exist, even though that cannot be proven (i.e. proving the non-existence of something may be impossible).

      I’m sorry if you feel some of my posts feel like an attack on the Christian faith. That really isn’t my motivation.

      I’m motivated by several things. First, I simply like Biblical material and religious philosophy. And especially so when it is connected to my former faith. But my main motivation revolves around providing some comfort to Ex-JWs, especially LGBTQ Ex-JWs who have endured years of Biblical brow beating. To counter that view of the JW leadership and some conservative Christians hold. That they “own” the Bible and are the only ones in a position to comment on the material.

      That’s just not true! The Bible is a gift to all of humanity from a group of ancient authors. They wrote, we read, and all of the right to comment on the material.

      Ultimately though my motivation is rooted in a true love for Biblical material. That love has grown over many years. To me the Bible is like an old friend who I have gotten to know very well. I “visit” with him several times every week. In the process I have come to discover my friend as some awful warts. But all that does is lay bare his ultimate human nature. So when I post I try my best to defend the Biblical authors for who they are and what they wrote.

      Aren’t you in the same position? You are willing to step away from certain JW beliefs. If openly expressed at the KH such beliefs would be attacked and not from any reasoned discussion! To be regular at the KH, yet come here and comment, shows character. I wish more JWs would see that. If a JW is solid in their faith there is nothing a post here can do to change that. For all the worry the JW leadership shows in regards to “apostates” nearly every story of leaving I’ve read starts with something that happens inside the faith.

      For what it is worth — I appreciate your posts and enjoy the opportunity to respond.

      Take care Messenger,
      -Randy
      ps. I believe NT authors teach “faith in Christ is necessary for salvation” (John 14:6). In fact I contend JW theology get lost by attempting to overshadow Jesus Christ with “Jehovah.”

      • messenger says:

        . “I believe NT authors teach “faith in Christ is necessary for salvation” (John 14:6). In fact I contend JW theology get lost by attempting to overshadow Jesus Christ with “Jehovah.” Randy

        If that’s the case why didn’t you at first say that instead stating your belief is only that inspiration should be drawn from Christ, implying that was a Bible teaching and not your personal feelings in a very deceptive manner. Comments like that identify your motive.

        In a similar way your claim about Gen 3:15, claiming men would step literally on real snakes makes no sense considering the surrounding context of that scripture (the snake spoke to EVE). And you cannot deny ignorance of context. Another claim of yours identifying your motive to sully the Bible’s message. But, If not an adverse motive you are completely blind. In either case I must move on Randy. Your writings are very deceptive due to either your motive or your blindness.

        Randy on Gen 3:15 states, “Thus the most direct thing we can say about this verse is the J-source Genesis author here is simply stating a future relationship between mankind and serpents. There would be an enmity between the two. While humans can indeed crush serpents in the head, it is noted that serpents, being low to the ground, strike at the heel.” Randy on Gen 3:15

        • Hi Messenger,

          [If that’s the case why didn’t you at first say that instead stating your belief is only that inspiration should be drawn from Christ, implying that was a Bible teaching and not your personal feelings in a very deceptive manner.]

          Because both are true — it is not either/or. One can be inspired by the recorded words and actions of Jesus while at the same time expressing an understanding of what early Christians must have believed.

          [In a similar way your claim about Gen 3:15, claiming men would step literally on real snakes makes no sense considering the surrounding context of that scripture (the snake spoke to EVE). And you cannot deny ignorance of context.]

          No doubt men and women of the era literally crush the heads of snakes either while hunting or in self-defense. However, I said it would “be reasonable to believe there could be a bit of metaphor in the identify of the serpent.”

          [Another claim of yours identifying your motive to sully the Bible’s message.]

          Indeed some of my posts could “sully *the Bible’s message*” but why does that happen? To sully means to “damage the purity or integrity of; defile.” If one has been a JW for anything length of time they will have been taught the phrase “the Bible’s message.” As if there is one overarching consistent message in the Bible.

          The problem is The Bible is actually not like that. It is a collection of 66 (or 73) books by some 40 different authors written during different time periods for different reasons. Just as one author can reference another another or be inspired by each other some of that winds up in the Bible text. Sometimes authors say the exact opposite of each other, even for obvious effect. Isaiah says “beat their swords into plowshares” (2:4). Joel says “beat their plowshares into swords” (3:10). One Psalm wound up in two collections and thus appears twice now (14 and 53).

          Thus a close read of the Bible text is what sullies the idea of one consistent message. For example you said:

          [Similar to, “Is that really so?(followed by) You positively won’t die” put forth by Satan to Eve at Gen 3:1]

          This is so commonly repeated we hardly notice that this is not something one would learn from reading Genesis alone. That is so, because “Satan” is not a character in Genesis.

          All that said… I go back to idea of actions before words. It is what we do it is how we treat people that’s important.

          Take care Messenger,
          -Randy

  30. Mandalay says:

    Two foundational tenets of Christianity are the weakening or dividing of the family (for Christ) and mindless subservience to tyrannical authority. For those who are not in a good state of mind to begin with, these beliefs could be considered risk factors.

  31. Jason Bourne says:

    On a lighter note, here is some covertly-taped never-before-seen footage – secured at great risk – of Anthony Morris III & Stephen Lett discussing the acquisition of the Warwick property.
    Destroy your device after viewing.

    https://youtu.be/2XfqlbFvGN8

  32. Honest Counselor says:

    People need to be comforted with this, http://www.watchtowercriminals.blogspot.com :

    “John 10:14 – reassures us that Jesus representing his father as the Good Shepard does “…know my sheep and am known of mine” and always did!

    “FAITHFUL and WISE or DISCRETE Slave or Servant” will “wisely” (discretely) discern man’s latest words from God’s age old pure text and faithfully adhere to it! (3John1:11) What’s more, he will discretely differentiate the commands of men from those of his creator and remain faithful only to Jah knowing that his life and the lives of those in his charge are at stake (1 Peter 5:3, Matthew 20:25-28).”

    I would also like to relay this:

    To the Elders of congregation of Union Hills and their associates in Phoenix Arizona:

    I believe that many of your hearts were righteously motivated in your activities but will that any excuse for the pain that you have caused others? (Proverbs 14:12) Saul was righteously motivated as were other in their own minds before by God’s mercy they were corrected in their errant path to become some of the foremost and prized servants of his. Turn around and become as small children (Matthew 18:3-5, 11:25) before you lose your promise of things to come (Matthew 24:47). No one should believe that simply because they have an appointment of responsibility that there is an owed entitlement or expectation of that carrying over into the new world. Or that there will be any even remotely similar structure in the new world to resemble what existed in this world. “One does not put new wine into old wineskins” (Mark 2:22).
    Just as the Passover and exodus from Egypt foreshadowed mankind’s release and deliverance from the slavery and bondage from sin and death of this old world, does that mean that just as certain Pharisees and Jews also who carried over into the new Christian congregation(s) in Jerusalem with their teachings and doctrines on the mosaic law and that certain ones will perhaps insist on and clinging to things from the old world or demand an instant paradise as ones who were led out of Egypt (Genesis 14:11)? It is quite possible. Just as the command was given to rebuild the physical temple in Jerusalem, the earth will be reconstructed with the aid of God and his spirit and Angels with no obstruction by wicked spirit forces. In the meantime, however long that may be, be assured that just as the Israelites wandered in the desert with not a stitch of clothing being lost nor a meal missed that not a need will not be cared for.

    To the Elders in the congregation of Moon Valley, Shaw Butte, Spanish North and all of their associates in Phoenix Arizona:

    How many times can warnings be given and opportunities be offered for explanation for your conduct? How long must gross crime, violence, abuse and iniquity be tolerated? You had a very spokesman of God in your midst to speak on his behalf and yet you still refused to listen and then you trashed him as so much garbage as well. What do you think will be the outworking of this? You had your empire reign and the power and glory that you so greedily sought at the expense of others. Your mini Kingdom has run its course with all of the perceived benefits and all of the pains that came with it, mostly the pains. Now like all kingdoms it will end. I hope you enjoyed yourself while you had it because that was the extent of it all (Matthew 6:2, 19:30). In the words of your Elder Mark Suddock, “You still did it” is the reply you may very well get when you are forced to explain very soon!

    To the Elders of the Capitol Hill congregation in Oklahoma City:

    For your hardheartedness and unreasonable cruelty towards the sick and the weak you will be shown the same measure of mercy unless you repent (Matthew 9:13, Hosea 6:6). The Mentally Ill and the disabled are not throwaway people to be disfellowshipped or have their “Implied invitation revoked” at the first opportunity due to conduct beyond their power. And in fact, quite the opposite! These are the ones that the congregation should have been making special effort and overtures toward protecting and caring for them just as your creator always has.

    To the Elders of the International Falls congregation in Minnesota:

    I will say only what Jesus said to the congregation in Laodicea (Revelation 3:14-20) “I wish that you were either hot or cold but since you are neither, I will spit you out of my mouth”. Just like so many other congregations, you chose to overlook or not take seriously badness and iniquity due to the relative relationships of individuals to you or their age and gender. By doing that you rendered God’s law as ineffectual or conditionally contingent upon the discretion of mere men. While the secret tribunals were never a part of God’s command to the congregation and are themselves iniquitous, it does not mean to simply stand by and tolerate badness in the congregation.

    To the Elders of the National City congregation in San Diego California:

    It is well known that there are a few among you who walk around as Lot did among the city of Sodom. That these try to uphold the principles of God in a land of gross looseness and badness where there are no standards or restraints even among those who take on the mantel of teachers. It is also understood that the Land of Modern day occidental Sodom is vast from North to South and encompasses many people and cities and congregations. Was not Lot delivered? (2 Peter 2:7) Only Lot was alone and even the heart of his wife was not with him (Genesis 19:26). You are not alone as there are others who are with you and you will all be delivered as well.

    To the Congregations of Manhattan Street and McCord Road in Toledo Ohio as well as Monroe North and South Congregations in Monroe Michigan:

    Time does not wash away iniquity but Jah can (Isaiah 1:18) through the provision of Jesus’ shed blood. You know this already so what excuse will you have?
    Time itself is an affectation and perception of man as well as a physical attribute of the tangible universe. Time, space, matter and gravity as well as light are all arithmetically connected and affected as part of the physical universe as anyone who was within the umbra of the total eclipse last August will have noticed. Right at apogee you would have noticed that there was a bizarre and unrealistic aura taking place as the light rays were bent by gravity around the moon. Since we don’t actually “see” things but the light that bounces off of them, we received light from an indirect angle which was changing the perspective of our perception of reality.
    Jah is not beholden to time since he is not bound to the physical universe that he himself created. That is why he knows everything that ever took place in the past, future and present and can hear all prayers ever made or will be made at once(1 John 3:20). That is why he is fit to judge the heart and worthiness of life of an unborn child or a 1 year old at Armageddon knowing the outworking of that person’s life before it ever happens or would. The crimes that some of you have committed many years ago are as fresh as this morning. *tic toc*

    Everyone in God’s favour should pray that your physical bodies and health will endure the mere fright and shock of what you are all about to experience and what is about to come upon the earth. Just keep praying and remembering that this is a beginning and not an ending. A renewal and not a completion and that the “real life” (1 Timothy 6:19) begins now.
    Keep perspective by telling yourself that 20, 40 50 or 70 years or more will seem laughably inconsequential in retrospect to thousands or millions of years and beyond.

    • Deborah Rush says:

      Honest Counselor Thank You…spiritually-awake,conscious and caring.Dear Fellow, in Agape may Christ’s spirit continue with you… we can now see yes,an end,tho so painfully slow coming..the end of the injustices..for the molested,and the ill,the judged;the trashed..a type of relief is beginning,in these concerted efforts to expose the sickening perversions!The more Exposes are being broadcast,the more we sense that it all-cumulatively legitimizes and validates(we)wounded ones. For humanity;for the sake of our noblest Godgiven morays,and highest values..we all must continue to fight for Them,for beauteous/handsome hearts and minds–that affected;traumatized ones have had a birthright to–that was smashed,stolen,waylaid,by such UN-Christian hypocrites.Revelation 16:15,and 18:4-8,indeed.

      • outandabout says:

        Deb and honest counselor…….a sure sign that one has gone ‘over the top’ and into the realm of delusion and mania, is the talking in scripture. In a court of law one is required to swear on the bible but the moment one starts quoting scripture as a defense or evidence of anything at all the judge will be thinking quietly to himself ‘hmmm….maybe this person should have pleaded insanity’. Just try it and see how far you get. Society in it’s highest echelons just gives lip service to god. God is tolerated out of respect for peoples beliefs but when push comes to shove, when total truth is required, if someones reputation or life is on the line, the bible has as much clout as The Lord of the Rings or Harry Potter. There’s a very good reason for that.

        • Honest Counselor says:

          outandabout said: “Deb and honest counselor…….a sure sign that one has gone ‘over the top’ and into the realm of delusion and mania, is the talking in scripture”

          Thank you for sharing your opinions and off the cuff diagnosis. Now that your own clearly pathological symptomatology regarding a truly “delusional” pseudo “Humanistic/Atheistic” religion for which there is absolutely no documentary historical evidence or reference to which is found in any religion or secular writings of antiquity other in the Bible itself (To indicate what foolishness the very notion is) has been satiated with respect to me, I trust that you will find no further need to respond to anything that I post. I say that as someone who has spent a goodly number of years working in clinical mental health services as well as being a well trained and keen observer of human behavior. I don’t bandy words so this is my final statement on the matter. I will say that you may want to be cautious as to who you choose to be contentious with. It may not be who you think or someone more than you think to be.

          Take Care

    • Honest Counselor says:

      Correction:
      Sorry, that’s suppose to be Exodus 14:11 and not Genesis 14:11 above…my mistake!

      http://www.watchtowercriminals.blogspot.com

  33. Honest Counselor says:

    Correction:
    Sorry, that’s suppose to be Exodus 14:11 and not Genesis 14:11 above…my mistake!

    http://www.watchtowercriminals.blogspot.com

  34. Vito says:

    I am by no means of defender of many JW doctrine, but this so called loophole is not only incorrect but highly deceptive. Killing someone befire armageddon does not guarantee resurection. In almost 30 years of being an active witness I had never heard such BS. I’m all for exposing these people pool leaders and their practices, but this is just sensationalism.

    • Vito says:

      I am by no means of defender of many JW doctrine, but this so called loophole is not only incorrect but highly deceptive. Killing someone before armageddon does not guarantee resurection. In almost 30 years of being an active witness I had never heard such BS. I’m all for exposing these people for their leaders and their practices, but this is just sensationalism. (Damn autocorrect screwed with my OP).

      • Beetle Man says:

        Get a life. If you don’t want to serve Jehovah or be a JW get on with your life and leave everyone else to do the same. It’s Satan who wants to keep tearing people down.

      • fallingangel75 says:

        @Vito. I try hard to avoid conflict in the comments but unless I’m completely misunderstanding you, you missed the point. It is not to say this is a real loophole or that killing anyone before Armageddon actually guarantees a spot in the New World.

        Covert Fade makes a point of saying it is not official doctrine. Or even one that is deliberately implied.The point is that the teachings and framework allow some individuals to draw that conclusion *incorrectly*. And perhaps a subset of those who are not mentally stable are led to act on it by taking their own lives and/or the lives of loved ones.

        We do not really know what was going on in this woman’s head, but to point out that her JW beliefs may have been a factor is not sensational at all.

        I’m sure many people have thought about it but ultimately respect for life and other stronger beliefs or fears won out and they’ve never followed through with plans for suicide or murder.

        The fact remains: witness doctrines warp the mind and perceptions of what things should be. In life and love and family ties and hope for the future and expectations for the present…

  35. fallingangel75 says:

    I haven’t read all the comments, but I continue to be annoyed by any comments in any thread that insist that once an individual decides it isn’t the truth they should simply shake it off, make new friends and move on.

    I firmly believe it’s all lies, but I have no less than 20 immediate family members who are all in. Husband. Parents. Siblings. In-laws. Nieces and nephews. And everyone’s children.

    Through unavoidable necessity of my living arrangements and livelihood I am in constant contact. I literally can’t strike out on my own and care for myself and my child. I would actually be homeless and hungry or supported by the state

    It would probably take the first 5 years of my daughter’s life to get and keep us from poverty and dependence .

    Every time I plan my escape I come to the conclusion that I lack the financial resources (and I have excellent job skills, references, and a college degree.)

    But my life is too intertwined with all of them to make this clean break people talk about . On a practical level that doesn’t even address the mental and emotional entanglements.

  36. fallingangel75 says:

    As out as I want to be physically and mentally it’s almost impossible to be either when I am completely surrounded by individuals who wholeheartedly believe this is the best way of life now and path to future salvation.

    I’m currently living a double life. On one hand I’m playing a depressed new mother who can’t make it to most of the meetings because I’m not physically and emotionally up to it.

    And on the other hand I’m a determined feminist who recently registered to vote and volunteers for local causes and just took my one year old to an Easter egg hunt and party – which she loved! Cuz bunnies, eggs, and toys!

    I’ll explain the pagan origin and lack of correlation to Christ’s resurrection later. For now: it was a fun outing that made for lots of smiles and giggles.

    But of course I have to hide this from all of my jw family. And next year when she’s talking I won’t be able to. Nor do I want her to hide and sneak like she’s doing something wrong . So I’m not sure how I’ll handle this going forward.

    • tranquillo says:

      Fallingangel don’t give up! you will get out physically and mentally. If you have excellent job skills you will find a good job sooner or later to support you and your child. A double life is not sustainable at all. It will make you ill.

  37. fallingangel75 says:

    So I am really depressed. I’m not pretending that part. I wish I could vote openly and be politically active and support ‘worldly’ charities and celebrate holidays with my daughter and non-JW family without being shunned.

    The duplicity and dishonesty of this double life is unsustainable. The lengths it will take to continue and not be found out are great. I can’t keep this up for years, nor do I want to.

    I hate this religion that makes you choose between having a relationship with your family and life long friends and being your authentic self.

    If anything is anti-christ and from the devil this is. I cannot believe a loving god or benevolent Christ would want this dilemma for anyone.

    • Angela73 says:

      Dear Fallingangel75.

      You are truly in a very difficult situation in life. I hope you can find the best way to solve it. But there is no graceful way out. Please be careful.

      I understand that it is an unsustainable double life. But with so many entangled relations and family inside, to leave will be as difficult.

      I also have familymembers who still holds respectful positions as dedicated JW. If you leave there will be so much unwanted attention.

      Speaking for myself – it made me physically sick. I can’t put my finger on what was – and still is – actually happening, but I have seen it in many cases, not only myself, that the health will be at target.

      Human thoughts and expression are highly energetic. And to have people with the strong, dedicated and sometimes twisted mindset frantically focus on

      1) How do get her to change her mind, strengthen her spiritually, so she return back to the “True Faith”.

      2) Everyone will use their tactic skills to make you question yourself, all in the name of “love”. With their best intentions they will emotionally blackmail you. It is done in despair and desperation to save your life. With your life at stake, in their eyes, it is crucial to help you to change your mindset.

      3) As you now are a mother and have a beautiful little daughter, be sure she will be used as a argument to stay and if not, everything will be done to help to save you daughter.

      And all of this together will have a big impact on your life quality, I can assure you. And as you have 20 dedicated familymembers, I don’t even want to think about the implications it will have on you. And if you have a depression now, that makes you even more vulnerable.

      Speaking for myself, I got sick and my two girls acted out a lot because of the rage my mother felt towards me when I refused to return. She used all kinds of tactics.

      And I didn’t connect the dots at the beginning.

      Me and my husband even thought one of my daughters had a mental issue. Wich of course she didn’t. But she was uncontrollable, screaming like a crazy person, acting out sometimes out of nowhere.

      Not until I totally broke the contact with my dear mother (I love her anyway and will always miss her despite of everything) my daughters totally stopped this kind of behavior.

      To add to the confusion, my daughter had a very near and dear relation to her grandmother (my mother). And a continuous relation with my mother would be nothing but a confusing disaster.

      The sad part is that she would in reality be the best grandmother in the world – but because of her faith as a JW it hijacks her normal instincts. Her dysfunctional attitude towards me affected my girls very negative. I actually reluctantly had to break all the contact with my mother in order to protect my family.

      My girls totally stopped this strange behavior only to start again right after a visit from my dearest brother who is also a very dedicated JW. Wich reinforced my conclusion.

      So that is why I ask you to please take care of yourself. Be careful. A depression is a very weak ground to build a new life on. You need to strengthen yourself in every possible way. I don’t want my worst enemy to go through what I have gone through.

      When I was at it´s worst, my husband was so worried. He even thought I had only hours left to live. And I didn’t have any psychical illness. Nothing. Only to be so worn down of everything – because of the pressure, even though I am totally POMO, it just wore me out.

  38. fallingangel75 says:

    By the way: excellent article Covert Fade! I failed to say that first in my previous comments, but it was actually my first thought.

    Also: more of my personal thoughts on the Armageddon loophole. I questioned this from childhood. Like at 4 and 5 years old.

    It raises the question: is salvation random or merit-based? Why is an individual who dies before Armageddon who may even have been a criminal more deserving of a chance at eternal life than a good and God-fearing person who is loving and helps people but their great and fatal sin is not having listened to the Witness message?

    And what of all the people born in countries where they really never heard the message despite the efforts to teach in every language and reach remote locations?

    Just saying: Jehovah reads hearts and he will do what’s fair and just doesn’t really address the fundamental logic flaws.

    • outandabout says:

      those are the correct questions to ask, fallingangel. It’s called ‘being sure of all things’, or ‘reading the fine print of the contract’.
      Dead relatives coming back to life is part of the bait to get you to believe, thats why the loophole doesn’t add up. They pull our heartstrings with dead relatives while threatening the living with annihilation for not joining up. A push me pull me situation. This belief system will stoop as low as it needs to go to survive.

      • Ricardo says:

        @outandabout, the propaganda the GB uses at this time is already quite sickening. The stories and dramas are always extreme: someone dying in a car crash or dying of cancer, losing their job or losing their hands, as well as bunkering down waiting for the governments to arrest us.

        Do you understand there will be more of this? How much tragedy can the members take until they have been exhausted of emotional feeling for the org?

        God help us!

        • outandabout says:

          well at least you can see through them, Ricardo, and because of that, they don’t have any power over you, right? Any power they have over you can only be the power you give them. At the end of the day, it’s all down to that.

  39. Lisa Lomas says:

    That damage is real, it is deep and everlasting. If you did not have your whole life built around it then you will never get it.

    • fallingangel75 says:

      And they actively encourage you to build your life around it. That and they actively discourage you from branching out and developing and maintaining relationships with neighbors and classmates and co-workers and non-JW family. They make it so all you have is individuals in the congregation so that it is excruciatingly painful to think of leaving. They act like it’s to protect you from the world, but the reasons are far more nefarious.

  40. Jezz says:

    Your article is not correct. Jehovah’s Witnesses believe ONLY FAITHFUL WORSHIPPERS OF GOD and those WHO NEVER LEARNED ABOUT GOD will be resurrected . With the possible exception of some who have a really good heart condition despite not doing Gods Will.

    • Jezz says:

      Therefore the thought of suicide is a scary one because the fear is that you will never see life again because you chose to murder yourself or another and according to JW’s without time to repent and with full knowledge you are doing wrong, you risk NO RESURRECTION!

    • Jo Hann says:

      Jezz. I haven’t been a very active member ofJW for 15 years but grew up going to JW. But I read off and non. As far as I know, from their teachings not everyone will be resurrected. I can’t see why an evil person would be resurrected. Therefore this loophole makes no sense/incorrect. I’m still trying to figure out stuff in this life.