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Thread: what does the bible really teach?

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    Default Alleged "

    The title to this was supposed to be "Alleged 'End-of-World' Dates". For some unknown reason, the post was submitted before I finished the title, and there is now no way to edit the title.

    Originally Posted by abcd
    Watchtower Society and Charles Taze Russell's Predictions:
    1874, 1878, 1881, 1914, 1915, 1918, 1925, 1941, 1975, 1994
    [Only registered and activated users can see links. ]
    The Watch Tower Society did not exist in 1874 or 1878. Russell himself never made gave any "expectations" regarding 1874, since before 1874 he did not have any positive belief concerning the date 1874. Russell did not accept the date 1874 as the return of Christ until 1876, two years after 1874 had passed.

    Russell never mentioned the dates 1925, 1941, 1975 or 1994 as holding any prophetic significance.

    The site referenced, in effect, by evidently misunderstanding and misrepresenting what both Jesus and the apostle Paul stated, would deny the validity of the Bible itself. As related to Russell, it is incorrect in some of its statements:

    By placing the above dates in the context "44 failed & 1 ambiguous end-of-the-world predictions", the author leaves one with the assumption, that the "end of world" was predicted for each of the above dates. This is simply not true.

    "1914 was one of the more important estimates of the start of the war of Armageddon by the Jehovah's Witnesses (Watchtower Bible and Tract Society). They based their prophecy of 1914 from prophecy in the book of Daniel, Chapter 4"
    As I related before, there were no "Jehovah's Witnesses" back in the days of Russell. Nevertheless, I do not know of anyone who made a "prophecy" that the war of Armageddon was to start in 1914. Russell gave his conclusions, based on his studies of the Bible, but he stated that his conclusions should not be considered prophecy. Russell based his conclusions, however, not just on Daniel 4, but on studies related to several different prophecies in the Bible. (The JWs today have rejected all of Russell's studies on this, except for that of Daniel 4.) Of course, if we are now living in the "time of the end" since 1914, Russell's expectations, at least concerning the beginning of Armageddon in 1914, did not fail. From the JWs' standpoint, however, since they do not believe that we have been in the time of trouble since 1914, it would appear to be a failure.

    Nevertheless, placing this date in the context of ""44 failed & 1 ambiguous end-of-the-world predictions" is highly misleading, since Russell directly stated that he was not expecting "the end of the world" in 1914. Nor did Russell expect Armageddon to be simply a "massive battle in Israel."

    In connection with the idea of "The End of the World" in 1914, some have quoted the headline of The Bible Students Monthly, January, 1914, issue, out of context. Written by Charles Taze Russell, the article relates his viewpoint concerning “the end of the world,” and how he was not expecting the “end of the world” in 1914. Indeed, the article further shows that Russell was not expecting the second coming of Jesus in 1914, as some have claimed. Some have quoted the large bold headline out its context, which reads “End of World in 1914,” and claimed that Russell was preaching that the world would end in 1914. In fact, the smaller bold headline underneath the large headline continues by saying, “Not the View of Pastor Russell or of I.B.S.A.” Thus, in fact, the tract denies that Brother Russell was expecting “the end of the world” in 1914.

    Since late in the 19th century, they had taught that the "battle of the Great Day of God Almighty" (Armageddon) would happen in 1914 [Only registered and activated users can see links. ]. It didn't.
    There evidently were some Bible Students in the 19th century who had rejected Barbour's conclusions that Armageddon was to end in 1914, but Russell was not one of them, at least, not until 1904, which was in the 20th century, not the 19th century.

    In 1904, Russell accepted the Biblical evidence of some his associates that 1914 was to see, not the end, but the beginning of Armageddon. Thus, from the standpoint of Russell himself, he did not teach during the 19th century that Armageddon was to 'happen' (actually 'begin') in the year 1914, but in the 20th century, in the year 1904, he did conclude that 1914 was to see the beginning of the time of trouble.

    By the language used in the above quote, however, the author appears to be ignorant of what Russell believed and taught about "Armageddon"; the words appear to be projecting the JW belief back on Russell, rather than holding to historical accuracy.

    From Russell's standpoint from 1904 onward, what was expected to happen in 1914 was that "Armageddon" was "begin" on that date -- not the JW-type of Armageddon, but rather the Armageddon that would sum up the wrath of God that has been upon man even since Adam disobeyed. I (and many others associated with the Bible Student) believe that Armageddon did begin then, and will last until Satan is finally abyssed, and the present heavens and earth pass away. Thus, to say that, at least from Russell's standpoint, and from the standpoint of many Bible Students, that "It didn't" happen, is misleading, if it did, indeed, begin in that year.
    Last edited by ResLight; Feb 17, 2011 at 18:00.

  2. #257
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    Originally Posted by abcd
    White predicted Jesus would “visibly” return in 1844, just like Charles Taze Russell(founder of the Jehovah's Witnesses) predicted Jesus would visibly return in 1874.
    As stated before, Russell never "predicted" Christ was to return in 1874; it was not until 1876 that Russell accepted that Christ had already returned in 1874, thus before 1874, Russell never "predicted" -- or more correctly, held to any expectations of -- anything about 1874. Russell, however, was not the "founder of the Jehovah's Witnesses". Russell did not believe in such a sectarian and authoritarian organization, nor in the alleged "good news" proclaimed by that organization.

    See:
    Focus on Charles Taze Russell - Founder of JWs?
    [Only registered and activated users can see links. ]

    Originally Posted by abcd
    But when her prediction did not come true, she changed her prediction and stated that Jesus had started his “investigative judgement” “invisibly” in 1844, which is very similar to the Jehovah's Witnesses prediction that Jesus “invisibly” took his throne in 1914 AFTER Russell was wrong about Jesus “visibly” returning in 1874.
    Rutherford actually changed the date of Christ's return from 1874 to 1914 because he wanted to misuse and reinterpret the time prophecies of Daniel 12 and Revelation 12 to make them appear to apply to his new organization. Rutherford gradually changed the date without giving any genuine explanation for the change, and had all who would not accept his change disfellowshipped. Rutherford never proved that Russell was wrong about Jesus having returned in 1874; he simply wanted to use the prophecies to support his authority in his new organization. Indeed, it is somewhat confusing, since for several years Rutherford presented both ideas, that Christ had returned in 1874, and that in had returned in 1914, without any explanation of such. It was not until the 1930s that Rutherford quietly dropped 1874 altogether and simply referred to 1914 as the date of Christ's return.

    Originally Posted by abcd
    Ellen G. White created a large amount of beliefs, and Charles Taze Russell would “borrow” heavily from her teachings.
    Actually, as I have stated, there is no evidence that Russell borrowed from Ellen G. White at all. White may have had some similar beliefs, but this does not mean that Russell borrowed such beliefs from White.

    Originally Posted by abcd
    1. Ellen G. White believed the other non-adventist churches were under the power of Satan. To this day Adventists secretly believe the Catholic church is “the whore of Babylon.”
    "Here we find the mark of the beast. The very act of changing the Sabbath into Sunday, on the part of the Catholic church, without any authority from the Bible."-Ellen G. White

    This is identical the the Watchtower's teachings that the non-Witness churches are under the power of Satan.
    It was generally taught by practically all Protestants that the Catholic church was the whore of Revelation; for various reasons, most Protestants today have left off teaching this. Russell believed that Babylon, as represented in sectarianism, is indeed of the devil; God has never approved of such sectarianism, or denominationlism, and such sectarianism or denominationlism must be destroyed since God is not going to permit such divisions in his kingdom. Russell did not believe, however, that such destruction of Babylon would mean eternal destruction for all who are members of such denominations; rather, he believed that the destruction of Babylon would free Christians from such denominationalism.

    Nevertheless, Russell did not recognize any sectarian lines as did the Adventists, or as the JWs do today. He believed that any Christian, whether associated with the Bible Students or in the denominations, could be affected by Satanic influence. He certainly never condemned all who were not of the Bible Students movement to any kind of eternal destruction, as the JWs do today, nor did he ever say that in order for one to be a Christian, he had to belong to the Bible Students' association.

    The statement, "This is identical the the Watchtower's teachings that the non-Witness churches are under the power of Satan," seems to reflect more the teaching of Rutherford and the modern-day JWs, not Russell.

    See:
    Focus on Charles Taze Russell - Sectarianism
    [Only registered and activated users can see links. ]

    Originally Posted by abcd
    "Is it presumptuous of Jehovah's Witnesses to point out that they alone have God's backing? Actually, no more so than when the Israelites in Egypt claimed to have God's backing in spite of the Egyptians' belief, or when the first-century Christians claimed to have God's backing to the exclusion of Jewish religionists." Watchtower 2001 June 1 p.16
    The above reflects the Jehovah's Witnesses, but Russell taught almost the opposite of this. Note what Russell stated:

    We should not object to the Lord's using various agencies for accomplishing his work. We should not think that we alone have the privilege of engaging in his work; that we have patent rights on his work, and can hinder others from doing what they may be able to do and take pleasure in doing.
    What Pastor Russell Said, [Only registered and activated users can see links. ](1910)

  3. #258
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    Originally Posted by Knicks4lyfe
    If I am a Jehovah's witness, what is the big deal about using the publications I am associated with, so long as your question is answered?


    Hebrews
    1:8:

    RS
    reads: “Of the Son he says, ‘Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever.’” (KJ, NE, TEV, Dy, JB, NAB have similar renderings.) However, NW reads: “But with reference to the Son: ‘God is your throne forever and ever.’” (AT, Mo, TC, By convey the same idea.)


    Which rendering is harmonious with the context? The preceding verses say that God is speaking, not that he is being addressed; and the following verse uses the expression “God, thy God,” showing that the one addressed is not the Most High God but is a worshiper of that God. Hebrews 1:8 quotes from Psalm 45:6, which originally was addressed to a human king of Israel. Obviously, the Bible writer of this psalm did not think that this human king was Almighty God. Rather, Psalm 45:6, in RS, reads “Your divine throne.” (NE says, “Your throne is like God’s throne.” JP [verse 7]: “Thy throne given of God.”) Solomon, who was possibly the king originally addressed in Psalm 45, was said to sit “upon Jehovah’s throne.” (1 Chron. 29:23, NW) In harmony with the fact that God is the “throne,” or Source and Upholder of Christ’s kingship, Daniel 7:13, 14 and Luke 1:32 show that God confers such authority on him.

    Hebrews 1:8, 9 quotes from Psalm 45:6, 7, concerning which the Bible scholar B. F. Westcott states: “The LXX. admits of two renderings: [ho the·os′] can be taken as a vocative in both cases (Thy throne, O God, . . . therefore, O God, Thy God . . . ) or it can be taken as the subject (or the predicate) in the first case (God is Thy throne, or Thy throne is God . . . ), and in apposition to [ho the·os′ sou] in the second case (Therefore God, even Thy God . . . ). . . . It is scarcely possible that [’Elo·him′] in the original can be addressed to the king. The presumption therefore is against the belief that [ho the·os′] is a vocative in the LXX. Thus on the whole it seems best to adopt in the first clause the rendering: God is Thy throne (or, Thy throne is God), that is ‘Thy kingdom is founded upon God, the immovable Rock.’”—The Epistle to the Hebrews (London, 1889), pp. 25, 26.
    1. Jesus said we should get our peace from what he "told" us, not organizations:
    John 16:
    33I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

    In other words, through what Jesus has told us you find peace that is in him, which causes cessation of all "trouble," when one puts faith in Jesus and his message, as one finds the peace he found in overcoming the world's temptations.

    Obviously, we learn from one another, especially when we allow our interpretations to be questioned. But, by going through an organization, to such a massive extent as you have, which essentially makes it so that the organizational voice is more prominent than Jesus', is, in my opinion, spiritually unhealthy.

    Originally Posted by Knicks4lyfe
    I mean, no matter what bible you use, once you get to this part in Hebrew "God, thy God" Instantly it should tell a person that Jesus has a God. End of story.

    Hebrews 1:2 says Jesus has become Heir to all things. Heir is not equal, he is next in line. God created angels, not other Gods. But those angels follow him, making them God like.

    And then verse 9, the kicker : You loved righteousness, and you hated lawlessness. That is why God, your God, anointed you with [the] oil of exultation more than your partners.”

    If Jesus is God, this would effectively mean that the Father has boosted Jesus worth above his and the Holy spirit, since in the trinity setting all three are 3 diff persons, but equal in the Godhead. Essentially making Jesus Christ Almighty God.

    So the reasonable conclussion is that, no he is not God, he is being exulted to a higher authority, or thrown by God, because of his staunch righteousness.
    1. Actually, it is not the end of the story. Otherwise, Christians would all be JW's or Adventists. Christianity is not a legalistic religion, where everything is one-two-three. It is about the heart and the spirit, as stated throughout the Greek scriptures.

    Also, Thessalonians 4:16... "For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first."

    ----> This implies that the Lord will come with several things: with a loud command, the voice of the archangel and the trumpet call of God. It does not say that these are Jesus' personal characteristics. It says these will essentially be the accompanying signs of his descent.

    2. As for your other point, I could just as well take Hebrews 1:8 and say that Jesus is called God, meaning he is Jehovah. And follow it by saying End of story, since, in your thinking 1:9 contradicts 1:8.

    3. Moreover, 1:9 is saying God, thy God, stating that God is Jesus' God, but the same is implied in 1:8, when God is quoted as saying, in reference to Jesus, "Your throne, O God." Don't you see that one could say that Jesus is Jehovah's God, using the logic WTBS employs?

    The fact is that the scripture speaks for itself: Jesus is, in Christianity, a physical manifestation of the supreme.

    4. Also this publication distorts Wescott's statement, making it seem he supports their translation of Hebrews 1:8, when he is exclusively speaking about psalms.

    Originally Posted by Knicks4lyfe
    I'm saying that those translations have been geared toward a trinitarian viewpoint. Because a lot of times, there is an instance where a translated word can mean more than a specific word. For instance, those bibles use worship in Hebrews 1:6. Ours says Obeisance. Both words show venerable respect toward the person, but worship makes it appear as if he is God, obeisance is reverential respect for an authoritive figure. Same thought in some ways, but the words will take you to opposite spectrums.

    It makes sense to you that God has a God? It makes sense to you that 1/3 of the Godhead gave power to another 1/3 of God? And what of the Holy Spirit? Where is that person? He has nothing to say? No objections to the Father raising Jesus above 2/3 of the Trinity?

    The surrounding text indicates he is being given a higher office than the other angels. Since no God was mentioned until His God called him God. Plus, if you're right, then there is no trinity, Jesus stands as God alone. Can't have it both ways.

    Also consider Col 1:15, where it calls Jesus the firstborn of all creatures. God has no creator. If Jesus is a creature, then he had a beginning.

    Why is God still in heaven with authority, saying he has a God? Only logical explanation is he is not almighty God, but has God like authority in ways, which were given to him by the Father.

    And there are many instances where he says everything he knows, he learned from the Father, he said that concerning the time of the end, Not the Son, nor the Angels in Heaven, know the time of the end, only the Father.

    Unless you got something better, I have to side with JW's viewpoint here, because I don't have to twist my mind in some wierded out way to wrap my head around something that those who believe in the trinity call a mystery.


    1 thess 4:16 because the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a commanding call, with an archangel’s voice and with God’s trumpet, and those who are dead in union with Christ will rise first

    Why would Jesus, God, decide to use the voice of a lesser being to ressurect the dead? Makes no sense, unless he is the arch angel

    Jude
    9 But when Mi′cha·el the archangel had a difference with the Devil and was disputing about Moses’ body, he did not dare to bring a judgment against him in abusive terms, but said: “May Jehovah rebuke you

    This is the only angel ever called arch. This harmonizes well with Jehovah bestowing more power to Jesus over the other angels, making him the Chief.


    Dan12:1 “And during that time Mi′cha·el will stand up, the great prince who is standing in behalf of the sons of your people. And there will certainly occur a time of distress such as has not been made to occur since there came to be a nation until that time. And during that time your people will escape, every one who is found written down in the book.

    And Jesus is God's chosen King who will act on behalf of God's people during the great tribulation and armageddon.

    It's just a very logical conclussion. Very, very sensible.

    Question for you. Who do the descriptions fit when speaking about this particular angel in rev 10? 1 And I saw another strong angel descending from heaven, arrayed with a cloud, and a rainbow was upon his head, and his face was as the sun, and his feet were as fiery pillars, 2 and he had in his hand a little scroll opened. And he set his right foot upon the sea, but his left one upon the earth, 3 and he cried out with a loud voice just as when a lion roars. And when he cried out, the seven thunders uttered their own voices


    I explained the worship part. Jesus is the Arch Angel, or chief of the angels, meaning the strongest, most authoritive figure amongst them, therefore superior in that regard.

    Bibles you mention as trinitarian are in line with Christian tradition, which is why they can be used by almost any church, while bibles like the NWT are seeking to more so break with tradition because they hold different beliefs. This is why no church, other than the JW's, uses the NWT as their bible.

    It should also be said that the JW's were using other bible translations (some of which are the ones you cited as agreeing with the NWT), in line with their beliefs, years before and after the NWT. Around the same times as CT Russell there were plenty of unitarian groups, as mentioned by ABCD.

    In any case, I think you answered my questions: I understand why the JW's hold these beliefs, in spite of what it says in all non-denominational translations.

    Colossians is distorted, again, in the NWT. They add, in brackets, the word other to the following scripture, prior to the word creation:

    Colossians 1:

    15 The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation.

    Read the bible for yourself, K4L, and stop listening to human masters. Jesus exhorts you to listen to him, he tells you how to know you are listening to him: your burden must be easy and light, you must find your organization treating others, as well as members, with humility.

    Does the organization promote this?

    Matthew 11:
    28Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”
    Last edited by OGKnickfan; Feb 18, 2011 at 14:45.

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    Originally Posted by OGKnickfan
    1. Jesus said we should get our peace from what he "told" us, not organizations:
    John 16:
    33I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

    In other words, through what Jesus has told us you find peace that is in him, which causes cessation of all "trouble," when one puts faith in Jesus and his message, as one finds the peace he found in overcoming the world's temptations.

    Obviously, we learn from one another, especially when we allow our interpretations to be questioned. But, by going through an organization, to such a massive extent as you have, which essentially makes it so that the organizational voice is more prominent than Jesus', is, in my opinion, spiritually unhealthy.
    When Jesus started his ministry, is it fair to say he started a new Faith, or organization? I think so. He taught organized, he organized who he sent out to teach. It's fair to say the Christians in the first century were an organization, with Jesus as it's leader, and Jehovah their God. That is the same relationship JW's have with Jesus and his Father. We let Jehovah's word guide us. No other faith adheres to the bible more than Jehovah's witnesses do. Point blank. And that is the ultimate source, God's word. So this organization stuff, you keep coming up with is really weak. The Jews were a people, they were organized. The early Christians were too, so why would JW's not follow suit?

    And I wonder how you can claim any sort of spiritual health, when you neglect the fact that Jehovah is God, or do you wish to follow his rules! I'm flabbergasted at that, honestly, because one thing JW's will try and do, is listen to God. You don't want to, yet you are somehow claiming a better relationship with God.

    And that verse you posted is squarely about keeping courage because Jesus conquered Satan's world, so his followers can too. That is it. Nothing more.


    Originally Posted by OGKnickfan
    1. Actually, it is not the end of the story. Otherwise, Christians would all be JW's or Adventists. Christianity is not a legalistic religion, where everything is one-two-three. It is about the heart and the spirit, as stated throughout the Greek scriptures.
    Adventists believe in the Trinity. So they too, have fallen way side to having their ears tickled, and not sticking with solid scritpural reference. This is why Jesus Chose JW's when he became King. They stick to the bible.

    Keep this in mind. When Jesus started his ministry, the Jews at the time were God's chosen people. Yet, Jesus had to correct the many flaws in their teachings, due to them not keeping true to Jehovah's word. They didn't even recognize as a whole, that he was the Messiah, even though they had no reason not to. They had the word in front of them. They knew the timeline the Messiah would appear, and still rejected him.

    Now back to Christians. Why is it that none of the Apostles ever called Jesus God? None of them thought he was God. In fact that is why the Jew reject Christianity, because the scriptures never say the Messiah would be God! Nothing in the whole old testament says God will send himself. Jesus, in the whole New Testament, never once said 'I am God'. Everything he said reflects a person who knows God very closely, and was taught by, recieved authority by, and witnesses of God. Speaking of witness, the bible calls him the faithful and true witness. Witness of who? Witness of God. Bible says you cannot be a witness of yourself. You cannot find any tangible evidence that the Christians in the first century, while the apostles lived, thought anyone but Jehovah, not Jesus was God. Couple that with the fact that Jesus said Jerusalem (Spiritual) would be trampled on until the appointed time, which would coincide for true worship to be re-established, there is no wonder all the lies like Hellfire, and the Trinity surfaced in Christianity. You forget Satan is in play here. You think he is just gonna make it easy for people to find the truth about Jehovah?





    Originally Posted by OGKnickfan
    Also, Thessalonians 4:16... "For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first."

    ----> This implies that the Lord will come with several things: with a loud command, the voice of the archangel and the trumpet call of God. It does not say that these are Jesus' personal characteristics. It says these will essentially be the accompanying signs of his descent.
    Jesus Voice is his. The trumpet is God's. Distinct difference. And you have to keep in mind the other scriptures as well. They coincide very well with the thought of this one.

    Originally Posted by OGKnickfan
    2. As for your other point, I could just as well take Hebrews 1:8 and say that Jesus is called God, meaning he is Jehovah. And follow it by saying End of story, since, in your thinking 1:9 contradicts 1:8.

    3. Moreover, 1:9 is saying God, thy God, stating that God is Jesus' God, but the same is implied in 1:8, when God is quoted as saying, in reference to Jesus, "Your throne, O God." Don't you see that one could say that Jesus is Jehovah's God, using the logic WTBS employs?
    Once it says God, your God" It is over. God cannot have a God. Point blank, end of discussion, unless you choose to reason illogically with yourself.

    And I have Jesus, after he died, back in heaven, in Rev, when he has authority to do as he pleases, saying he has a God.

    So when you say JW's should listen to Jesus, My eyes bug out my head, because apparently, they are! We see Jesus saying He has a God! We see where Jesus said all authority has been given to him. Why does God need to wait for any authority to be passed to him? We see when Jesus says everything I know, I was taught by the Father. Why would God not be privy to information? we see verses like this in Hebrews 9: 24 For Christ entered, not into a holy place made with hands, which is a copy of the reality, but into heaven itself, now to appear before the person of God for us

    Jesus... appeared, before the person of God? Jesus, who is God, appeared before the person, of God? REALLY? This verse sounds simliar to this.

    Job:6 Now it came to be the day when the sons of the [true] God entered to take their station before Jehovah, and even Satan proceeded to enter right among them.

    Two instances in heaven, where people were before the person of God. What makes Jesus instance any different from Satan's instance, logically? Nothing.

    This is just another scripture that supports the bibles evident theme that Jesus is not God, but a Son of God.

    JW's are called many things, but we are avid readers of God's word. The evidence is overwhelmingly in favor of Jehovah being God alone.



    Originally Posted by OGKnickfan
    The fact is that the scripture speaks for itself: Jesus is, in Christianity, a physical manifestation of the supreme.

    4. Also this publication distorts Wescott's statement, making it seem he supports their translation of Hebrews 1:8, when he is exclusively speaking about psalms.
    No, it qoutes him correctly, and he does not say whether the translation is favorable or not. But his words do allow for the thought process of the explanation.

    I will make a seperate post on the Trinity.



    Originally Posted by OGKnickfan
    Bibles you mention as trinitarian are in line with Christian tradition, which is why they can be used by almost any church, while bibles like the NWT are seeking to more so break with tradition because they hold different beliefs. This is why no church, other than the JW's, uses the NWT as their bible.

    It should also be said that the JW's were using other bible translations (some of which are the ones you cited as agreeing with the NWT), in line with their beliefs, years before and after the NWT. Around the same times as CT Russell there were plenty of unitarian groups, as mentioned by ABCD.

    In any case, I think you answered my questions: I understand why the JW's hold these beliefs, in spite of what it says in all non-denominational translations.

    Colossians is distorted, again, in the NWT. They add, in brackets, the word other to the following scripture, prior to the word creation:

    Colossians 1:
    15 The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation.

    Read the bible for yourself, K4L, and stop listening to human masters. Jesus exhorts you to listen to him, he tells you how to know you are listening to him: your burden must be easy and light, you must find your organization treating others, as well as members, with humility.

    Does the organization promote this?

    Matthew 11:
    28Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”
    Christianity is not about tradition. It's about God's word. This is how the Jews messed up. Honoring their traditions, rather than God. The elders or any human is not my master, they are all in the same boat I am in. Trying to learn from him. And him is Jesus, and his master is Jehovah, just like ours.

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    Watchtower doctrine is essentially antagonistic in nature: the world is against you, you are against the world, tradition and non-tradition cannot co-exist, everything has to be in a neat little box, black-and-white, or the supreme is unhappy. Man, with his rules, as Paul stated to the Hebrews, created these, not God, who is beyond all humanly-conceived limitations.

    Because of this theme in the watchtower's views of the world and itself, I think you are incorrectly assuming that I am trying to make your eyes bug out. On the contrary, I have recently (over the year and a half) been reading the bible, after many years of not doing so, and continue finding scriptures that conflict with what I learned from the watchtower. Since you are a baptized, adult witness, I asked you about what I found.

    As for trinity doctrine, versus unitary doctrine, I care for neither one. I was simply interested in how your organization explains what I feel points at a trinity: Jesus (the son), The holy spirit (comforter Jesus will send) and the father.

    Finally, I should say that I am not a Christian: I have, as a result, no interest in doctrine. I love Jesus, because he clearly loves and cares about all. The power of his love is such that even someone like me, who believes we all have the capacity to reach his heights, cannot help but hold him dear.

    I think that, when people focus on doctrine and organizations, they lose out on innocent love, falling for the seductions of the physical world, which, whether one expects these promised delights in this world or on some paradise earth, deny the suffering that Jesus called men to submit themselves to. Says Paul...

    Philippians 3
    • 7 But whatever were gains to me I now consider loss for the sake of Christ. 8 What is more, I consider everything a loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them garbage, that I may gain Christ 9 and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which is through faith in[[Only registered and activated users can see links. ]] Christ—the righteousness that comes from God on the basis of faith.10 I want to know Christ—yes, to know the power of his resurrection and participation in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, 11 and so, somehow, attaining to the resurrection from the dead.
    And in case there is an awake or watchtower that claims Paul was here asking for fleshly salvation, on a paradise Earth. Here is what he means by "resurrection from the dead," as expressed in his letter to the Ephesians.

    Ephesians 2
    • 1 As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, 2 in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient. 3 All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our flesh[[Only registered and activated users can see links. ]] and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature deserving of wrath. 4 But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, 5 made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved.
    My only issue with the organization is its treatment of members: four or five boring meetings a week, treating as spiritually weak those that associate with non-believers, shunning people who choose to leave and controlling, down to a person's hygiene and dress, members' personal lives.

    Jesus wanted better for his followers, of which I consider witnesses and other Christians to be equal members. Again, my objections are not toward witnesses but with governing body people who choose not to wash the feet of the world, as Jesus washed the feet of his apostles, saying...

    John 13
    • 14 Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another’s feet.15 I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you. 16 Very truly I tell you, no servant is greater than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him. 17 Now that you know these things, you will be blessed if you do them.

    PEACE n' LOVE

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    Default Are Jehovah's Witnesses being brainwashed?

    Q: Why is it that the Watchtower.org website does not give Jehovah's Witnesses access to ALL of their previous publications, if they are in the Jehovah's Witness religion?

    A: Jehovah's Witnesses are being brainwashed by the
    Watchtower Bible & Tract Society.


    Watchtower June 15, 1956
    "THE BRAINS OF MILLIONS NEED A WASHING."


    Watchtower March 15, 1973
    "The shape our brains are in, they need a good washing."

    AWAKE! OCTOBER 22, 1986
    "My father said that the Witnesses would brainwash me, to which I replied that MY BRAIN NEEDED A GOOD WASHING."


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    Originally Posted by ResLight
    The title to this was supposed to be "Alleged 'End-of-World' Dates". For some unknown reason, the post was submitted before I finished the title, and there is now no way to edit the title.
    I don't agree with the teachings of the International Bible Students and Charles Taze Russell, but you have a right to your beliefs.

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    Originally Posted by OGKnickfan
    Watchtower doctrine is essentially antagonistic in nature: the world is against you, you are against the world, tradition and non-tradition cannot co-exist, everything has to be in a neat little box, black-and-white, or the supreme is unhappy. Man, with his rules, as Paul stated to the Hebrews, created these, not God, who is beyond all humanly-conceived limitations.
    Well, again, your problem that should be God's word, not the Watchtower. Everything JW's stand or do not stand for is based upon sound biblical reasoning. God has rules. He had rules when Adam ate from the tree, he has rules today. And yes, everything does have to be in a neat little box or Jehovah is not happy. He is a God of order, not disorder. Nothing in the bible is man made. This is God's book, not man's. And Jehovah has a right to be worshipped according to his will, not ours. Sorry you have an issue with that.



    Originally Posted by OGKnickfan
    Because of this theme in the watchtower's views of the world and itself, I think you are incorrectly assuming that I am trying to make your eyes bug out. On the contrary, I have recently (over the year and a half) been reading the bible, after many years of not doing so, and continue finding scriptures that conflict with what I learned from the watchtower. Since you are a baptized, adult witness, I asked you about what I found.
    It's good that you are reading the bible, but unless you read it with it's theme in mind, and not yours, which It appears you are not doing, you will always have flaws in your reasoning. And it's not just with the bible, it's with any book. You can say the cat in the hat is about the Green Bay- Steelers superbowl, but be prepared to be laughed at if you say it to others.

    If you keep the theme in mind, I'm sure those contradictions wil slowly desipate.

    Originally Posted by OGKnickfan
    As for trinity doctrine, versus unitary doctrine, I care for neither one. I was simply interested in how your organization explains what I feel points at a trinity: Jesus (the son), The holy spirit (comforter Jesus will send) and the father.
    Fair enough. The information provided puts the beats on a trinity belief. Especialliy to logically thinking folks.

    Originally Posted by OGKnickfan
    Finally, I should say that I am not a Christian: I have, as a result, no interest in doctrine. I love Jesus, because he clearly loves and cares about all. The power of his love is such that even someone like me, who believes we all have the capacity to reach his heights, cannot help but hold him dear.
    Well this is why you should never say you are more Christian than true Christians. Because unlike you, Jesus did care about doctrine. That is what he taught. The true doctrine of God. And this is what a true follower of Christ bases their life around. They live it. You cannot be more Christian than those actually doing what Jesus taught, can you?


    Originally Posted by OGKnickfan
    I think that, when people focus on doctrine and organizations, they lose out on innocent love, falling for the seductions of the physical world, which, whether one expects these promised delights in this world or on some paradise earth, deny the suffering that Jesus called men to submit themselves to. Says Paul.
    2 tim 4 3 For there will be a period of time when they will not put up with the healthful teaching, but, in accord with their own desires, they will accumulate teachers for themselves to have their ears tickled; 4 and they will turn their ears away from the truth, whereas they will be turned aside to false stories

    Healthful teaching is doctrine. Those who have other desires, or agendas will turn to teachings that tickle their ears, and turn away from truth. Truth is concrete. 100 %. Anything short is unhealthful teaching. This is why I respect your philosophical position, but will have to say that according to the bible, your thoughts fall into 'tickled ears' faction, far from the truth.

    Originally Posted by OGKnickfan
    And in case there is an awake or watchtower that claims Paul was here asking for fleshly salvation, on a paradise Earth. Here is what he means by "resurrection from the dead," as expressed in his letter to the Ephesians.

    Ephesians 2
    • 1 As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, 2 in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient. 3 All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our flesh[[Only registered and activated users can see links. ]] and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature deserving of wrath. 4 But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, 5 made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved.
    This is talking about being dead in your transgressions if you continue to live the ways of the world, which ran by its ruler satan, is in direct oposition to God's will. That is why Pau says 'used to live' Once a person repents, wich means turns back from doing bad, to doing good, you know, followoing God's rule, then they are saved by the grace of God. Their transgressions, Jehovah no longer holds agains them. That has nothing to do with the actual resurrection itself.


    Originally Posted by OGKnickfan
    My only issue with the organization is its treatment of members: four or five boring meetings a week, treating as spiritually weak those that associate with non-believers, shunning people who choose to leave and controlling, down to a person's hygiene and dress, members' personal lives.

    Jesus wanted better for his followers, of which I consider witnesses and other Christians to be equal members. Again, my objections are not toward witnesses but with governing body people who choose not to wash the feet of the world, as Jesus washed the feet of his apostles

    Jesus regularly met with his disciples for meetings and instruction. Also, consider the fact that the world hates God's people. These meetings are essential for not only learning, but fellowship with like ones. Bonding. Nothing at all wrong with that. And improper association with those outside of the faith can stray one away from faith. Birds of a feather... So it is sound biblical warning to not be unevenly yolked with non believers. The organization does not control our dress. We are advised to be at our best appearance our circumstances allow, without being too gaudy or flashy to offend those of our brothers with less, or the world. Nothing wrong with being clean and neat. I'm sure Jesus did the same in his ministry.

    Now as far as disfellowshiping?

    EXPELLING
    The judicial excommunication, or disfellowshipping, of delinquents from membership and association in a community or organization. With religious societies it is a principle and a right inherent in them and is analogous to the powers of capital punishment, banishment, and exclusion from membership that are exercised by political and municipal bodies. In the congregation of God it is exercised to maintain the purity of the organization doctrinally and morally. The exercise of this power is necessary to the continued existence of the organization and particularly so the Christian congregation. The congregation must remain clean and maintain God’s favor in order to be used by him and to represent him. Otherwise, God would expel or cut off the entire congregation.—Re 2:5; 1Co 5:5, 6.

    Jehovah’s Action. Jehovah God took expelling, or disfellowshipping, action in numerous instances. He sentenced Adam to death and drove him and his wife Eve out of the garden of Eden. (Ge 3:19, 23, 24) Cain was banished and became a wanderer and a fugitive in the earth. (Ge 4:11, 14, 16) The angels that sinned were thrown into Tartarus, a condition of dense darkness in which they are reserved for judgment. (2Pe 2:4) Twenty-three thousand fornicators were cut off from Israel in one day. (1Co 10:8) Achan was put to death at Jehovah’s command for stealing that which was devoted to Jehovah. (Jos 7:15, 20, 21, 25) Korah the Levite along with Dathan and Abiram of the tribe of Reuben were cut off for rebellion, and Miriam was stricken with leprosy and eventually might have died in that condition if Moses had not pleaded for her. As it was, she was expelled from the camp of Israel under quarantine seven days.—Nu 16:27, 32, 33, 35; 12:10, 13-15.

    Under the Mosaic Law. For serious or deliberate violations of God’s law given through Moses a person could be cut off, that is, put to death. (Le 7:27; Nu 15:30, 31) Apostasy, idolatry, adultery, eating blood, and murder were among the offenses carrying this penalty.—De 13:12-18; Le 20:10; 17:14; Nu 35:31.

    Under the Law, for the penalty of cutting off to be carried out, evidence had to be established at the mouth of at least two witnesses. (De 19:15) These witnesses were required to be the first to stone the guilty one. (De 17:7) This would demonstrate their zeal for God’s law and the purity of the congregation of Israel and would also be a deterrent to false, careless, or hasty testimony.

    The
    Sanhedrin and synagogues. During Jesus’ earthly ministry the synagogues served as courts for trying violators of Jewish law. The Sanhedrin was the highest court. Under Roman rule the Jews did not have the latitude of authority that they had enjoyed under theocratic government. Even when the Sanhedrin judged someone deserving of death, they could not always administer the death penalty, because of restrictions by the Romans.

    The Jewish synagogues had a system of excommunication, or
    disfellowshipping, that had three steps or three names. The first step was the penalty of nid·duy′, which was for a relatively short time, initially only 30 days. A person under this penalty was prohibited from enjoying certain privileges. He could go to the temple, but there he was restricted in certain ways, and all besides his own family were commanded to stay at a distance of 4 cubits (c. 2 m; 6 ft) from him. The second step was che′rem, meaning something devoted to God or banned. This was a more severe judgment. The offender could not teach or be taught in the company of others, nor could he perform any commercial transactions beyond purchasing the necessities of life. However, he was not altogether cast out of the Jewish organization, and there was a chance for him to come back. Finally, there was sham·mat·ta’′, an entire cutting off from the congregation. Some believe the last two forms of excommunication were undistinguishable from each other.

    One who was cast out as wicked, cut off entirely, would be considered worthy of death, though the Jews might not have the authority to execute such a one. Nevertheless, the form of cutting off they did employ was a very powerful weapon in the Jewish community. Jesus foretold that his followers would be expelled from the synagogues. (Joh 16:2) Fear of being expelled, or “unchurched,” kept some of the Jews, even the rulers, from confessing Jesus. (Joh 9:22, ftn; 12:42) An example of such action by the synagogue was the case of the healed blind man who spoke favorably of Jesus.—Joh 9:34.

    During the time of his earthly ministry, Jesus gave instructions as to the procedure to follow if a serious sin was committed against a person and yet the sin was of such a nature that, if properly settled, it did not need to involve the Jewish congregation. (Mt 18:15-17) He encouraged earnest effort to help the wrongdoer, while also safeguarding that congregation against persistent sinners. The only congregation of God in existence then was the congregation of Israel. ‘Speaking to the congregation’ did not mean that the entire nation or even all the Jews in a given community sat in judgment on the offender. There were older men of the Jews that were charged with this responsibility. (Mt 5:22) Offenders who refused to listen even to these responsible ones were to be viewed “just as a man of the nations and as a tax collector,” association with whom was shunned by the Jews.—Compare Ac 10:28.

    Christian Congregation. Based on the principles of the Hebrew Scriptures, the Christian Greek Scriptures by command and precedent authorize expulsion, or disfellowshipping, from the Christian congregation. By exercising this God-given authority, the congregation keeps itself clean and in good standing before God. The apostle Paul, with the authority vested in him, ordered the expulsion of an incestuous fornicator who had taken his father’s wife. (1Co 5:5, 11, 13) He also exercised disfellowshipping authority against Hymenaeus and Alexander. (1Ti 1:19, 20) Diotrephes, however, was apparently trying to exercise disfellowshipping action wrongly.—3Jo 9, 10.

    Some of the offenses that could merit disfellowshipping from the Christian congregation are fornication, adultery, homosexuality, greed, extortion, thievery, lying, drunkenness, reviling, spiritism, murder, idolatry, apostasy, and the causing of divisions in the congregation. (1Co 5:9-13; 6:9, 10; Tit 3:10, 11; Re 21:8) Mercifully, one promoting a sect is warned a first and a second time before such disfellowshipping action is taken against him. In the Christian congregation, the principle enunciated in the Law applies, namely, that two or three witnesses must establish evidence against the accused one. (1Ti 5:19) Those who have been convicted of a practice of sin are reproved Scripturally before the “onlookers,” for example, those who testified concerning the sinful conduct, so that they too may all have a healthy fear of such sin.—1Ti 5:20; see REPROOF.

    The Christian congregation is also admonished by Scripture to stop socializing with those who are disorderly and not walking correctly but who are not deemed deserving of complete expulsion. Paul wrote the Thessalonian congregation concerning such: “Stop associating with him, that he may become ashamed. And yet do not be considering him as an enemy, but continue admonishing him as a brother.”—2Th 3:6, 11, 13-15.
    However, regarding any who were Christians but later repudiated the Christian congregation or were expelled from it, the apostle Paul commanded: “Quit mixing in company with” such a one; and the apostle John wrote: “Never receive him into your homes or say a greeting to him.”—1Co 5:11; 2Jo 9, 10.

    Those who have been expelled may be received back into the congregation if they manifest sincere repentance. (2Co 2:5-8) This also is a protection to the congregation, preventing it from being overreached by Satan in swinging from condoning wrongdoing to the other extreme, becoming harsh and unforgiving.—2Co 2:10, 11.

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    Default Does the Watchtower have racist quotes?

    Zion's Watchtower 1900
    "Though once as black as charcoal, the Rev. Mr. Draper is now white. His people say that his color was changed in answer to prayer."

    Zion's Watchtower 1902
    "The secret of the greater intelligence and aptitude of the Caucasian undoubtedly in great measure is to be attributed to the commingling of blood amongst its various branches"

    The Golden Age(now known as the Awake!) July 24, 1929
    "There is no servant in the world as good as a good Colored servant, and the joy that he gets from rendering faithful service is one of the purest joys there is in the world."

    Watchtower, February 1, 1952
    "So if the Bible does not instruct Christians to fight slavery it would not sanction them to battle the lesser evil of segregation, at the expense of gospel-preaching.
    Really, our colored brothers have great cause for rejoicing. Their race is meek and teachable, and from it comes a high percentage of the theocratic increase."

    Yearbook 1934:
    "there is a proverb concerning the city of New York which says: The Jews own it, the Irish Catholics rule it, and the Americans pay the bills.

    The present government of Germany has declared
    emphatically
    against Big Business oppressors and in opposition to the wrongful religious influence in the political affairs of the nations. Such is exactly our position.

    Instead of being against the principles advocated by the government of Germany, we stand squarely for such principles

    Let us remind the government and the people of Germany, that it was the League of Nations compact that laid upon the shoulders of the German people the great unjust and unbearable burdens."

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    Originally Posted by Knicks4lyfe
    Well, again, your problem that should be God's word, not the Watchtower. Everything JW's stand or do not stand for is based upon sound biblical reasoning. God has rules. He had rules when Adam ate from the tree, he has rules today. And yes, everything does have to be in a neat little box or Jehovah is not happy. He is a God of order, not disorder. Nothing in the bible is man made. This is God's book, not man's. And Jehovah has a right to be worshipped according to his will, not ours. Sorry you have an issue with that.

    It's good that you are reading the bible, but unless you read it with it's theme in mind, and not yours, which It appears you are not doing, you will always have flaws in your reasoning. And it's not just with the bible, it's with any book. You can say the cat in the hat is about the Green Bay- Steelers superbowl, but be prepared to be laughed at if you say it to others.

    If you keep the theme in mind, I'm sure those contradictions wil slowly desipate.

    Fair enough. The information provided puts the beats on a trinity belief. Especialliy to logically thinking folks.

    Well this is why you should never say you are more Christian than true Christians. Because unlike you, Jesus did care about doctrine. That is what he taught. The true doctrine of God. And this is what a true follower of Christ bases their life around. They live it. You cannot be more Christian than those actually doing what Jesus taught, can you?


    2 tim 4 3 For there will be a period of time when they will not put up with the healthful teaching, but, in accord with their own desires, they will accumulate teachers for themselves to have their ears tickled; 4 and they will turn their ears away from the truth, whereas they will be turned aside to false stories

    Healthful teaching is doctrine. Those who have other desires, or agendas will turn to teachings that tickle their ears, and turn away from truth. Truth is concrete. 100 %. Anything short is unhealthful teaching. This is why I respect your philosophical position, but will have to say that according to the bible, your thoughts fall into 'tickled ears' faction, far from the truth.
    [/list]This is talking about being dead in your transgressions if you continue to live the ways of the world, which ran by its ruler satan, is in direct oposition to God's will. That is why Pau says 'used to live' Once a person repents, wich means turns back from doing bad, to doing good, you know, followoing God's rule, then they are saved by the grace of God. Their transgressions, Jehovah no longer holds agains them. That has nothing to do with the actual resurrection itself.





    Jesus regularly met with his disciples for meetings and instruction. Also, consider the fact that the world hates God's people. These meetings are essential for not only learning, but fellowship with like ones. Bonding. Nothing at all wrong with that. And improper association with those outside of the faith can stray one away from faith. Birds of a feather... So it is sound biblical warning to not be unevenly yolked with non believers. The organization does not control our dress. We are advised to be at our best appearance our circumstances allow, without being too gaudy or flashy to offend those of our brothers with less, or the world. Nothing wrong with being clean and neat. I'm sure Jesus did the same in his ministry.

    Now as far as disfellowshiping?

    EXPELLING
    The judicial excommunication, or disfellowshipping, of delinquents from membership and association in a community or organization. With religious societies it is a principle and a right inherent in them and is analogous to the powers of capital punishment, banishment, and exclusion from membership that are exercised by political and municipal bodies. In the congregation of God it is exercised to maintain the purity of the organization doctrinally and morally. The exercise of this power is necessary to the continued existence of the organization and particularly so the Christian congregation. The congregation must remain clean and maintain God’s favor in order to be used by him and to represent him. Otherwise, God would expel or cut off the entire congregation.—Re 2:5; 1Co 5:5, 6.

    Jehovah’s Action. Jehovah God took expelling, or disfellowshipping, action in numerous instances. He sentenced Adam to death and drove him and his wife Eve out of the garden of Eden. (Ge 3:19, 23, 24) Cain was banished and became a wanderer and a fugitive in the earth. (Ge 4:11, 14, 16) The angels that sinned were thrown into Tartarus, a condition of dense darkness in which they are reserved for judgment. (2Pe 2:4) Twenty-three thousand fornicators were cut off from Israel in one day. (1Co 10:8) Achan was put to death at Jehovah’s command for stealing that which was devoted to Jehovah. (Jos 7:15, 20, 21, 25) Korah the Levite along with Dathan and Abiram of the tribe of Reuben were cut off for rebellion, and Miriam was stricken with leprosy and eventually might have died in that condition if Moses had not pleaded for her. As it was, she was expelled from the camp of Israel under quarantine seven days.—Nu 16:27, 32, 33, 35; 12:10, 13-15.

    Under the Mosaic Law. For serious or deliberate violations of God’s law given through Moses a person could be cut off, that is, put to death. (Le 7:27; Nu 15:30, 31) Apostasy, idolatry, adultery, eating blood, and murder were among the offenses carrying this penalty.—De 13:12-18; Le 20:10; 17:14; Nu 35:31.

    Under the Law, for the penalty of cutting off to be carried out, evidence had to be established at the mouth of at least two witnesses. (De 19:15) These witnesses were required to be the first to stone the guilty one. (De 17:7) This would demonstrate their zeal for God’s law and the purity of the congregation of Israel and would also be a deterrent to false, careless, or hasty testimony.

    The
    Sanhedrin and synagogues. During Jesus’ earthly ministry the synagogues served as courts for trying violators of Jewish law. The Sanhedrin was the highest court. Under Roman rule the Jews did not have the latitude of authority that they had enjoyed under theocratic government. Even when the Sanhedrin judged someone deserving of death, they could not always administer the death penalty, because of restrictions by the Romans.

    The Jewish synagogues had a system of excommunication, or
    disfellowshipping, that had three steps or three names. The first step was the penalty of nid·duy′, which was for a relatively short time, initially only 30 days. A person under this penalty was prohibited from enjoying certain privileges. He could go to the temple, but there he was restricted in certain ways, and all besides his own family were commanded to stay at a distance of 4 cubits (c. 2 m; 6 ft) from him. The second step was che′rem, meaning something devoted to God or banned. This was a more severe judgment. The offender could not teach or be taught in the company of others, nor could he perform any commercial transactions beyond purchasing the necessities of life. However, he was not altogether cast out of the Jewish organization, and there was a chance for him to come back. Finally, there was sham·mat·ta’′, an entire cutting off from the congregation. Some believe the last two forms of excommunication were undistinguishable from each other.

    One who was cast out as wicked, cut off entirely, would be considered worthy of death, though the Jews might not have the authority to execute such a one. Nevertheless, the form of cutting off they did employ was a very powerful weapon in the Jewish community. Jesus foretold that his followers would be expelled from the synagogues. (Joh 16:2) Fear of being expelled, or “unchurched,” kept some of the Jews, even the rulers, from confessing Jesus. (Joh 9:22, ftn; 12:42) An example of such action by the synagogue was the case of the healed blind man who spoke favorably of Jesus.—Joh 9:34.

    During the time of his earthly ministry, Jesus gave instructions as to the procedure to follow if a serious sin was committed against a person and yet the sin was of such a nature that, if properly settled, it did not need to involve the Jewish congregation. (Mt 18:15-17) He encouraged earnest effort to help the wrongdoer, while also safeguarding that congregation against persistent sinners. The only congregation of God in existence then was the congregation of Israel. ‘Speaking to the congregation’ did not mean that the entire nation or even all the Jews in a given community sat in judgment on the offender. There were older men of the Jews that were charged with this responsibility. (Mt 5:22) Offenders who refused to listen even to these responsible ones were to be viewed “just as a man of the nations and as a tax collector,” association with whom was shunned by the Jews.—Compare Ac 10:28.

    Christian Congregation. Based on the principles of the Hebrew Scriptures, the Christian Greek Scriptures by command and precedent authorize expulsion, or disfellowshipping, from the Christian congregation. By exercising this God-given authority, the congregation keeps itself clean and in good standing before God. The apostle Paul, with the authority vested in him, ordered the expulsion of an incestuous fornicator who had taken his father’s wife. (1Co 5:5, 11, 13) He also exercised disfellowshipping authority against Hymenaeus and Alexander. (1Ti 1:19, 20) Diotrephes, however, was apparently trying to exercise disfellowshipping action wrongly.—3Jo 9, 10.

    Some of the offenses that could merit disfellowshipping from the Christian congregation are fornication, adultery, homosexuality, greed, extortion, thievery, lying, drunkenness, reviling, spiritism, murder, idolatry, apostasy, and the causing of divisions in the congregation. (1Co 5:9-13; 6:9, 10; Tit 3:10, 11; Re 21:8) Mercifully, one promoting a sect is warned a first and a second time before such disfellowshipping action is taken against him. In the Christian congregation, the principle enunciated in the Law applies, namely, that two or three witnesses must establish evidence against the accused one. (1Ti 5:19) Those who have been convicted of a practice of sin are reproved Scripturally before the “onlookers,” for example, those who testified concerning the sinful conduct, so that they too may all have a healthy fear of such sin.—1Ti 5:20; see REPROOF.

    The Christian congregation is also admonished by Scripture to stop socializing with those who are disorderly and not walking correctly but who are not deemed deserving of complete expulsion. Paul wrote the Thessalonian congregation concerning such: “Stop associating with him, that he may become ashamed. And yet do not be considering him as an enemy, but continue admonishing him as a brother.”—2Th 3:6, 11, 13-15.
    However, regarding any who were Christians but later repudiated the Christian congregation or were expelled from it, the apostle Paul commanded: “Quit mixing in company with” such a one; and the apostle John wrote: “Never receive him into your homes or say a greeting to him.”—1Co 5:11; 2Jo 9, 10.

    Those who have been expelled may be received back into the congregation if they manifest sincere repentance. (2Co 2:5-8) This also is a protection to the congregation, preventing it from being overreached by Satan in swinging from condoning wrongdoing to the other extreme, becoming harsh and unforgiving.—2Co 2:10, 11.
    Thanks for the reply. To be clear, I did not say that I am more Christian than "true Christians," as you stated. I was basically using hyperbole to express my feeling that most Christians have not understood Christ. I, however, am spiritual (not of any religion) and actively preach Jesus and the gospel in a spiritual way.

    Other than that, as I said earlier, I am not against Witnesses and neither is the rest of the world, as far as I have been able to tell. I have worked with witnesses at almost every establishment I have been associated with.

    Currently, I work with a female Witness. She is a part of the office family and is always spending time with us, after hours. I have found the same to be true with other witnesses: I have gone to movies with them, etc., in spite of WTS rules to the contrary. People love good people, no matter their religious affiliation.

    When the bible mentions the world, it was speaking of the metaphorical demons of greed, hate, pride, lust, etc., with which all people, to some extent, struggle. When Paul mentions the world, he often mentions lust and materialism. This is the theme.

    Most people, though they might drink or smoke (which I believe is not good for us), are not fundamentally made evil by these habits, nor do they try to force such habits on others.

    And, as Jesus said, you must deny yourself, i.e., not others. Worrying about yourself, with whom you live 24-7, is the key to divine communion.

    PEACE


    Originally Posted by abcd
    Zion's Watchtower 1900
    "Though once as black as charcoal, the Rev. Mr. Draper is now white. His people say that his color was changed in answer to prayer."

    Zion's Watchtower 1902
    "The secret of the greater intelligence and aptitude of the Caucasian undoubtedly in great measure is to be attributed to the commingling of blood amongst its various branches"

    The Golden Age(now known as the Awake!) July 24, 1929
    "There is no servant in the world as good as a good Colored servant, and the joy that he gets from rendering faithful service is one of the purest joys there is in the world."

    Watchtower, February 1, 1952
    "So if the Bible does not instruct Christians to fight slavery it would not sanction them to battle the lesser evil of segregation, at the expense of gospel-preaching.
    Really, our colored brothers have great cause for rejoicing. Their race is meek and teachable, and from it comes a high percentage of the theocratic increase."

    Yearbook 1934:
    "there is a proverb concerning the city of New York which says: The Jews own it, the Irish Catholics rule it, and the Americans pay the bills.

    The present government of Germany has declared
    emphatically
    against Big Business oppressors and in opposition to the wrongful religious influence in the political affairs of the nations. Such is exactly our position.

    Instead of being against the principles advocated by the government of Germany, we stand squarely for such principles

    Let us remind the government and the people of Germany, that it was the League of Nations compact that laid upon the shoulders of the German people the great unjust and unbearable burdens."
    This is disturbing and embarrassing, especially since Witnesses have a large black demographic amongst their membership and faced the same tortures as Jews, in the concentration camps.

    Until they condemn these words, their shadow looms over the organization, in my opinion.

  11. #266
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    Default Russell and Races

    Originally Posted by abcd
    Zion's Watchtower 1900
    "Though once as black as charcoal, the Rev. Mr. Draper is now white. His people say that his color was changed in answer to prayer."
    This is a quote from "The New York World", a newspaper that was published in New York until 1931.

    Originally Posted by abcd
    Zion's Watchtower 1902
    "The secret of the greater intelligence and aptitude of the Caucasian undoubtedly in great measure is to be attributed to the commingling of blood amongst its various branches"
    The quote is from an article entitled: "The Negro Not a Beast". It can be found online at:
    [Only registered and activated users can see links. ]

    I am not sure what is considered to be racist in this; it appears that someone has done research but only to find quotes that could be used to make it appear to be racist, without regard to what was actually being said in context. The entire article shows that Russell was way ahead of most in his time on being anti-racist. Russell was addressing the idea that some were presenting, especially that the white race was a superior race, an idea that later became the basis of Nazism. Among other things that many Protestant preachers were preaching was the idea that the Negro was a human being, and that he is referred to as a beast of the field in the Bible. Some were claiming that the Negro did "not have a soul". Indeed, this idea was somewhat popular amongst many Protestants in Georgia when I was growing up back in the latter 1950s and early 1960s.

    Russell was not condoning such a viewpoint, but he actually showed that such was not scriptural. He was trying to address the questions being put before him concerning what was being perceived as great differences between the races, and the perception that the white race was superior. His statement concerning this was:

    From the Scriptural standpoint we must and do recognize all of the human family as one race, of which father Adam was the original head; a later head being Noah.
    He stated:

    In attempting to account for the wide differences between whites and blacks, and the lesser differences between these and the yellow, brown, and red, we are treading upon uncertain ground,--as all ground must be in which our imperfect knowledge and imperfect reasoning powers have not inspired direction from the Lord's Word. Hence it should be understood at the outstart that all that we or others can do is to guess on this subject--respecting the differences in shape of head, color of skin, shape of eyes, peculiarities of hair, the nose, lips, etc.
    Thus, he admits that what he was presenting was guesses; he certainly was not laying down doctrine, nor was he speaking as a representative of an organization such the Jehovah's Witnesses, and he certainly did not present anything that could be considered racist, not unless the mere acknowledgement that there are what many perceive as differences amongst the races is itself considered to be racist.

    After the quote given (which is being assumed to be racist), Russell went on to say:

    It remains to be proven that the similar commingling of the various tribes of Chinese for several centuries would not equally brighten their intellects; and the same with the peoples of India and Africa.
    By that statement, Russell was suggesting that if many other races did the same, that is, if they dropped their attitudes of racial separateness and intermarried with other races, that they also would benefit from such. One of my college Biology professors made a very similar kind of statement when I was in college back in the 1970s. At that time, however, I was unaware of Russell's statement concerning this.

    At any rate, May our Heavenly Father be praised! Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus! -- Ephesians 1:3; 1 Peter 1:3.

  12. #267
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    Originally Posted by ResLight
    This is a quote from "The New York World", a newspaper that was published in New York until 1931.
    My entire post made no reference to Charles Taze Russell, yet you eagerly came and started defending him.

    You should seriously ask yourself why is it that you are so concerned with Charles Taze Russell?

    Who has been telling you that you need Charles Taze Russell's teachings in your life? Your family? A friend? An International Bible Student?

    You should ask yourself why do you see flaws in anything someone posts that is negative about Russell but you don't see any flaws when someone presents something positive about him?

    Why is it that everyone outside of the International Bible Students can find so many flaws in Charles Taze Russell's teachings and behavior, but you seem to feel he is infallible?

    I am not sure if the International Bible Students are brainwashed like the Jehovah's Witnesses, but you need to wake up before you throw your life away for the sake of following Charles Taze Russell.

    Russell has been dead for over 95 years. It's time for you to live your life.

    You don't have to leave the International Bible Students, but try focussing more on the Bible itself and less on Charles Taze Russell(a man not mentioned anywhere in the Bible).

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    The man who learned nothing in yrs of studying says JW are brainwashed. Nice.

  14. #269
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    Knicks4lyfe is a member of a religion that fits its own description of a cult, yet he claims I have learned nothing.

    The fact that you claim I've learned nothing proves you're in a cult.

    It is impossible for anyone to have "learned nothing."

    We all grow and learn, day by day.

    But you wouldn't know anything about learning or growth, since you're in a cult that hates "independent thinking" and discourages higher education.

    "Avoid Independent Thinking. 'How is such independent thinking manifested? A common way is by questioning the counsel that is provided by God's visible organization."Watchtower Jan 15, 1983 page 22


    I already tried warning you about the Watchtower cult, so when you're in your 70s, and you realize you blew your entire life worshiping the Watchtower don't say me, OGKnickfan, and LJ4PTPLAY didn't warn you.

    Continue living in a box.

    The Watchtower Bible & Tract Society defined the word "cult" for all
    Jehovah's Witnesses and non-Witnesses to see in their February 15, 1994 edition of the Watchtower Magazine.



    Let's see if the Watchtower Bible & Tract Society fits its definition of a cult.

    "Cult members often isolate themselves from family, friends, and even society in general."
    (The Watchtower, February 15, 1994, pp. 6-7)

    The Watchtower Bible & Tract Society practices shunning(ex-communication of family, friends, and former witnesses), disfellowshipping(removal of the Congregation), and the Jehovah's Witness children are discouraged from engaging in afterschool activities with "worldly" non-Witness children.

    Irrefutable Evidence:

    "Listen! "it is expected" that you will have no
    extra-curricular activities outside of the Watchtower. Such activity is a "danger" and "worldly". Organized to Accomplish Our Ministry 1983, p. 133.

    "Children should get away from disfellowshipped parents as soon as they are old enough to leave." (Watchtower, 11/15/52, p. 703. )

    "If a child of someone is disfellowshipped from the Kingdom Hall, the parent is to refuse to listen to the child's reason."( Organization for Kingdom-Preaching and Disciple-Making1972, p. 173.)

    "Disfellowshipped children, legally of age will be kicked out of the home." (Watchtower, 11/15/52, p. 703. )


    You are reminded that involvement in after-school sports tie you down, requiring you to spend evenings and weekends playing on a school team. You are expected to be at the lectures at the Kingdom Hall. "Any recreation you take outside of school should not be with worldly youths." Watchtower, 9/1/64, p.535.

    "Cheerleaders lead people into "frenzied cheering ... hero worship ... glorifying humans." School and Jehovah's Witnesses, 1983, pp.23-24. Never become a homecoming queen! This would 'set up womanhood upon a pedestal." Watchtower, 6/15/64, p.381.

    "In fact, the month Of May of Mother's Day is understood to be named after Maia, a demon worshiped by the pagans. . . . "' (Awake 5/8/1956, p. 25)

    "We all need to face up to the fact that Christmas and its music are not from Jehovah, the God of truth. Then what is their source? ... Satan the Devil."(WT 12/15/1983, p. 7)


    "No Jehovah's Witness should want to go to college." Watchtower,9/1/75, p.543; Pay Attention to Yourselves and to All the Flock, 1977, p. 105..

    "Do not pursue higher education." Watchtower 3/15/1969, p. 171

    "If a JW joins another religion, an announcement is made to the congregation to stop associating with him." (WT 10/15/1986 p.31)

    "If someone used to be a Jehovah's Witness, "We must hate in the truest sense, which is to regard with extreme ~ active aversion, to consider as loathsome, odious, filthy, to detest." Watchtower, 10/1/52, p.599.


    "The real danger of playing chess is it's military nature, the equivalent of the maneuvers enacted by little boys with toy soldiers." Awake !, 3/22/73, pp.12-14.

    Awake! 1986 october 22:
    "My father said that the Witnesses would brainwash me, to which I replied that my brain needed a good washing."
    Last edited by abcd; Feb 28, 2011 at 11:58.

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    Default Why Defend Russell?

    Originally Posted by abcd
    My entire post made no reference to Charles Taze Russell, yet you eagerly came and started defending him.
    However, a quote from Russell was misrepresented, and I responded to that quote of him.

    Nevertheless, the first quote given was not written by Russell, nor by anyone affiliated with the Watch Tower, but was written by someone of The New York World, as I pointed out. I did not mention Russell when I pointed that out.

    On the other hand, the second quote was written by Russell, but in some vague manner it was being claimed to have been racist, when in reality Russell was speaking against racism. In order to correct the claim, I did refer to Russell as the one who had written this, since it was indeed Russell who wrote it.

    Originally Posted by abcd
    You should seriously ask yourself why is it that you are so concerned with Charles Taze Russell?
    Why should I not be concerned when he is being misrepresented? Should I stand by while a man of God is being misrepresented, when it is in the realms of my ability and time to correct such misrepresentation?

    Originally Posted by abcd
    Who has been telling you that you need Charles Taze Russell's teachings in your life? Your family? A friend? An International Bible Student?
    I am grateful to God that Russell defended the Bible as opposed to man's self-appointed orthodoxy, and I am grateful to the Dawn Bible Students Association for pointing out Russell's teachings on the atonement, the ransom for all, and why God is permitting so much suffering. Back in 1950s and 1960s, I was greatly troubled over these matters, and although I had read in the Bible about the "ransom for all" and how God was going to bless all the nations, I still could not put all the scriptures together in any way that would make sense, since I was still greatly influenced by man's tradition. I had prayed extensively concerning this matter, and, having come into contact with the Dawn, these brothers of Christ helped me to realize that Russell was teaching similar to what I had the thoughts I was having from my own study of the Bible. I examined Russell's teachings thoroughly with the Bible, and although I had questions concerning many details, the way he tied so many scriptures together (something that I could not do on my own) led me to be convinced that, overall, he was correct concerning the "ransom for all." I have not relied wholly on his writings, but have expanded beyond what he wrote on the topic.
    [Only registered and activated users can see links. ]

    Originally Posted by abcd
    You should ask yourself why do you see flaws in anything someone posts that is negative about Russell but you don't see any flaws when someone presents something positive about him?
    Russell was not flawless, nor do I claim that he is. I myself see flaws in many things he wrote. Indeed, my claim is that Russell himself told his associates many times that he made no claims that what he had written or spoken was totally without error, and that one should look to the Bible only as the authority. I believe any Christian writer who would not have this attitude would be putting himself in place of Christ.

    Originally Posted by abcd
    Why is it that everyone outside of the International Bible Students can find so many flaws in Charles Taze Russell's teachings and behavior, but you seem to feel he is infallible?
    No, it seems to be that those who find alleged flaws in Russell's writings seem to think that Russell had claimed that he was infallible. Not that there are no flaws in Russell's works, but most of what is being presented as flaws does not usually represent any flaws. The actual flaw most often is that what is being presented misrepresents what actually happened, or what Russell actually stated, or what Russell actually taught, etc.

    I certainly do not think Russell was infallible, and don't know anyone in the Bible Students movement that thinks that Russell was infallible. Indeed, I have a page on one of my websites in which I present quotes from Russell in which he denied many times that he was infallible.

    [Only registered and activated users can see links. ]

    Nevertheless, most of the "flaws" that are being reported concerning Russell by those who oppose Russell are not real, but are made up by someone, and others repeat what has been made up, often adding their own imagination with more and more distortions and misrepresentations.

    And then there are those who, usually with great over-zeal to attack the JW organization, search Russell's works solely for the purpose of isolating certain quotes that they can misuse to misrepresent Russell, often with the idea that Russell represented the JW organization, when he did not.

    Would that I could correct all of the misrepresentations that are being spread, not only about Russell, but about any Christian. I have, in some forums, defended several other than Russell when I saw false statemetns being spread about them, but I just do not have time to defend all who might need to be so defended. Russell, however, it seems, has gotten to be the most represented man I have know of that is related to the Bible Students movement.

    I used to have a webpage defending Martin Luther, not in that I believed that everything that Luther taught, but rather in defense against misrepresentations of him. Since I changed servers, I haven't as yet reinstalled the page on Martin Luther; I hope as well to add more pages concerning other authors.
    [Only registered and activated users can see links. ]

    Likewise, I do not defend everything that Russell taught and said, but I do defend him against misrepresentations being spread about him. I do hold Russell in high esteem, since it was his works -- as well as with the aid of some others -- that led me to an understanding of why God is allowing all the suffering, evil, sects, denominations, religions, etc., and more importantly, the ransom for all.

    Russell, of course, has had the greatest influence amongst the Bible Students, with some even believing that he was "[Only registered and activated users can see links. ]", the "Laodicean Messenger", etc. (I do not accept this).

    I will be eternally grateful to God for His helps provided in men in such a way. I, as well as most other Bible Students, also hold Martin Luther and many others in high esteem, not because of agreement with, or in the sense of following all that they taught, but rather as having been used by God to bring forth certain Bible truths.

    [Only registered and activated users can see links. ]

    [Only registered and activated users can see links. ]

    Originally Posted by abcd
    I am not sure if the International Bible Students are brainwashed like the Jehovah's Witnesses, but you need to wake up before you throw your life away for the sake of following Charles Taze Russell.
    I follow no man except that any man may lead me to a clearer understanding of Jesus and the God of Jesus.

    As to "International Bible Students", this phrase is not generally used amongst the Bible Students, since the legal entity, "International Bible Students Association" of London, became part of the Jehovah's Witnesses' organization.

    Originally Posted by abcd
    Russell has been dead for over 95 years. It's time for you to live your life.
    Abraham has been dead for more than 3,000 years, and yet I see no reason to relieve myself of the effects of that man, or to reject the promises that are based on what that man did and his faith.

    Some make a similar argument concerning Jesus, stating that Jesus has been dead for almost 2,000 years (although I believe he is alive); I certainly would not want to negate the effect that Jesus has had in my religious study.

    Russell, however, has a lesser effect in my religious study than either Abraham or Jesus. If anyone has read my writings regarding the scriptures, I believe that would become self-evident.

    Nevertheless, I believe that it is self-evident to anyone who has appreciably studied Russell's works that God did indeed use him as he used Martin Luther and many others in the past 2,000 years. None of the works of Martin Luther or any other Christian writer since the apostles died are without flaw, nor are the writings of Russell without flaw.

    Originally Posted by abcd
    You don't have to leave the International Bible Students, but try focussing more on the Bible itself and less on Charles Taze Russell(a man not mentioned anywhere in the Bible).
    I do indeed focus on the Bible itself -- indeed, this is what Russell himself taught -- it is what a true Bible Student should do; at the same time this does not mean that I need to set back and remain silent while I see a man of God being misrepresented.

    Anyone who has read my writings should know that I do not depend on Russell, or any other man or human leadership, for my conclusions.
    [Only registered and activated users can see links. ]

    I also note that nothing in the reply of abcd actually responds to the actual clarifications I gave, in which I showed how Russell was being misrepresented.

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