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Posts tagged ‘Cult’

Dave Norris and his writings on the Belgian Bible Students

With articles like “The Watchtower Belgian Biblestudents“, “, “, “” the blogger Dave Norris who likes us to call “kindergartner” “toddler” or sometimes “spiritual kindergarteners”, he presents a lot of nonsense about our community, clearly showing he does not know much about us nor similar groups, but even worse, does not seem to have a clue about the Bible Student movement and the history of such religious groups as the Bible Students, Christadelphians, Jehovah’s Witnesses (JW) and many other non-Trinitarian groups.

On the blog “The Bible & Exposing Cult Error Darkness Into Light” he wants his readers to believe he exposes errors of others but in fact does nothing more than presenting his own errors, ignorance or lack of knowledge.

We do notice we are not the only target or are not spitting the only purpose of his gal. He seems so frustrated in his faith and religion he loves to write a lot about other religious groups instead spending more time to proclaim the Good News of the coming Kingdom of God or to give more information about his own faith group or church.

He calls us a “Spirit of deception” but clearly he throws so much untruth on the net we can not resist in the end to react to it and to let others know some of the incredible untruths that he proclaims as our doctrine. It is therefore very important that we expose these gross lies and clarify our positions. It is because of several of his writings and attacks on us and other their attacks we started in the end to present a new website for unmasking people like him: Please find and look at the new site Unmasking anti Jehovah sites and people.

The man, who presents himself as a bully in his mails to us, writes on the internet:

The Watchtower Belgian Bible student movement did precede the actual formation of the Jehovah’s Witnesses. Charles T Russell was their leader. {The Watchtower Belgian Biblestudents}

Charles Taze Russell may have been a pupil of John Thomas, the founder of the Brothers in Christ or Christadelphians, but for sure has never been our founder nor our leader.

Ch. T. Russell may be called the founder of the American Bible Students and of the International Bible Students, but is neither the founder of the Free Bible Students (who discarded many of the teachings of the American Bible Student founder Charles Taze Russell) nor from Belgian Bible Students nor the founder of the Christian Congregation of Jehovah’s Witnesses. Russell never was a Jehovah’s Witness, like Mr. or the adolescent Norris wants his readers to believe. In case Mr. Russell would present himself to become a Jehovah’s Witness he would even not be accepted by that organisation.

An other fault which Mr. Norris does is to say we are associated with the Jehovah’s Witnesses Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society which is at all not so. We do have no association with that publication institute nor with the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society Organisation be it of Brooklyn, New York, Pennsylvania or of Canada or even of any other states like Australia, nor with the JW Organisation. For clarity the Belgian Bible Students have nothing to do with the Jehovah’s Witness nor with any of their other organisations or missions.

It is not because we do believe in the same One True God, the Elohim Hashem Jehovah, that we would belong to one and the same Church.

We too may come from hundreds of ethnic and language backgrounds, and may, like the Jehovah’s Witnesses, have the same goal to praise and honour Jehovah God being united by common goals. The same as those lovers of God, we too want to do our best to imitate Jesus Christ and are proud to be called Christians. As followers of Christ Jesus we take his command to go out in the world as a serious matter and like the JW we too witness for Jehovah, each of us regularly spending time helping people learn about the Bible and God’s Kingdom. Because we witness, or talk, about Jehovah God and his Kingdom, some may confuse us with those other people who have the same goal as us and are known as Jehovah’s Witnesses.

Opposite claims by Mr. Norris, we have very clearly presented our history to him, which can be found more extensively on the net. As such we find again a gross misrepresentation of the facts, him writing on the net:

I wish the Belgian Biblestudents would be honest with me about their history as they have not been.

I do admit that they were right about Charles Russell not beginning Jehovah’s Witnesses. He was a false prophet nevertheless and they can’t get around that. Woe to the foolish Prophets who follow their own spirit and have seen nothing.{The Watchtower Belgian Biblestudents}

Though after this writing he continues

Biblestudents are a deceptive group under their leader Charles T Russell who is the founder of the Watchtower and the Jehovah’s Witnesses. The group Christadelphians have a lot to do with this movement. Imposters will grow worse and worse deceiving and being deceived. They are presently deceivers because they were being deceived by Charles Russell whom they hold up as their leader. {Belgian Biblestudent Deception- 1}

and repeats

They claim to follow the Bible but they deny the Triune Godhead. As I said in another report before Russell founded Bible students he began the Watchtower with the basic Jehovah’s Witnesses Doctrine in force. {Belgian Biblestudent Deception- 1}

Who is the deceiving person or spirit in this case?

He then presents a whole of prophesies we supposedly would have believed or followed, which is totally untrue and we even do not get any idea where he gets it form we would have hold fast on such prophesies when we ourselves always clearly say it is no man given, even not Christ Jesus, to know when the end times are coming, though we agree we can see the signs, we can never say an exact date. We, like nobody, according to us, can ever give a correct date on it.

We want our readers to know we do have nothing to do with prophesies of the Jehovah’s Witnesses nor ever would have believed in such a date setting.

Prophecies which may have been made by the JW but never by the Belgian Biblestudents (like Dave Norris and some other bloggers on the net want their readers to believe).

Mr. Norris also wants his readers to believe in high and low that we

are almost like the New Apostolic Reformation with a prophecy accuracy rate of 20%. {Belgian Biblestudent Deception- 2}

and asks his readers to examine for themselves, but giving a photograph of a Watchtower which is even not the Zion’s Watchtower of the American Bible Students nor our old magazine Zion’s Wachttoren (19th and 20th century publications) and not at all a magazine of our community, but a publication by the WTBTS.

Though Mr. Norris in his previous writing said he understood Russell was not the founder of the JW he again presents him as a prophet for the JW and worse of all also for us, which is against our teachings, we only are recognising such prophets as those declared by the Word of God, namely Nehemiah, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, Hosea, Joel, Amos, Obadia, Micah, Nahum, Habakkuk, Zephaiah, Haggai, Zecharia, Malachi and Jesus, considering many others as false prophets.

Mr. Norris also wirtes

Biblestudents don’t believe in the hell that Jesus talked about and yet they say they follow Jesus. {Belgian Biblestudent Deception- 2}

which is again a lie, we believing in sheol or hell, like Jesus was for three days in hell and also talked about hell.

Continuously that blog writer from the so called exposing Christian error site wants to associate us with the JW and again giving wrong dates concerning our history.

In 1879 he began the perversion of Jehovah’s Witnesses but under a different name. The Biblestudents didn’t start until 1876 and they themselves told me that when they said Russell was their founder. His organization wasn’t yet called Jehovah’s Witnesses but the obvious poisonous theology was in place. {Belgian Biblestudies Deception- 3}

Wappers - Episodes from September Days 1830 on the Place de l’Hôtel de Ville in Brussels.JPG

A painting depicting the conflict which led to the secession of the southern provinces (mainly the former Southern Netherlands) from the United Kingdom of the Netherlands and the establishment of an independent Kingdom of Belgium. – Episode of the Belgian Revolution of 1830, Gustaf Wappers (1834), (Museum of Fine Art, Brussels)

After the Battle of Waterloo (1815) several Students of the Bible living in the region of France its Low Countries got a more nationalistic feeling and when the Dutch-speaking Flemings and French-speaking Walloons had meetings in Rheims or Paris they wanted to make it clear they came from the Gallic (Gaul) or Belgica or Côtes Lorraines region or the plain of Flanders, and the Kempenland (French: Campine) and did not consider themselves any more to be part of the Nord–Pas-de-Calais or le Nord (North of France) region with Cambrai where also several Bible Students had found their home in a very hostile area for non-Trinitarians and/or Protestants. After the States-General in Brussels voted in favour of secession and declared independence the small state Belgium was formed and with it also the “Belgian Bible Students”, which at that time, may have had most of it members in the Famenne, Sambre, La LouvièreBorinage and Hainaut region, long before Charles Taze Russell (February 16, 1852 – October 31, 1916), or Pastor Russell, the American Christian restorationist minister from Pittsburgh, was born. It were such sincere students of the Bible who made it possible to get one of the first major Bibles in the French language circulating in the region and had one which was printed in Mons. There in Mons can still be found a copy of the first Gutenberg Bible (1455) which was used as a base (unfortunately incomplete). It was Canon Edmon Puissant (1860-1934) who came into possession of this copy in 1926.

 

D Norris telling a lot of nonsense in several articles on what he calls on Belgian Biblestudies, though our community is called Belgian Bible-students and has nothing to do with Ch.T. Russell as so called founder and the Jehovah’s Witnesses. Though we do agree Ch.T. Russell’s writings circulated and still circulate amongst us and got several of his and other brethren their English writings translated in French, Swiss German and Dutch by our community. In the early 20th century Russell even came to visit our community.

Next he presents an article on Armstrong false prophecy as a ‘Next’ article containing false prophecies of Herbert W Armstrong marking him as a false prophet, as if we would also follow this man.  This article is followed by “Belgian Biblestudies Deception- 4” were he keeps dragging on with prophecies of some one we do not have as our leader, what he keeps others to believe. And than he asks

Here are two more of Charles Russell’s false prophecies. What amazes me is how Belgian Bible students can justify this? {Belgian Biblestudies Deception- 4} {find our reaction if he publishes it}

And he keeps disbelieving that Russell was not our founder, as if we, as community would not know our own history and he knowing it much better than serious history writers or serious encyclopaedia.

But the Belgian Biblestudents still speak very highly of their founder Charles Russell despite all his false prophecies. Examine also the references for the false prophecies. They’re in the very same Bible studies that the Belgian group supports. Are they as blind as their founder was? I will have more in part 5. {Belgian Biblestudies Deception- 4}

Nowhere shall you find prophecies made by Russell or any other person which we would say you have to believe. We also do not know where he gets it from that we would hold Charles Russel‘s “Studies in the Scriptures” in such high regard. (Perhaps he assues that because we also took care for a translation and distribution of this work in our regions.) {Belgian Biblestudies Deception- 5} {we asked him also} Again he wants to do that Russell is the founder of our community and writes

the founder of this group as this book is full of lies and false prophecies. Worse still the Belgian Biblestudies group backs thiss book to the hilt. They know what’s in here and they believe it. {Belgian Biblestudies Deception- 5}

Dave Norris his continual misleading of the internet-public with attacking plus false sayings and making false connections in several of his articles, a.o. in his series Belgian Biblestudies Deception – {picture fragment from Belgian Biblestudies Deception – 6}

After a reaction we made on 2018 August 10 19.35 pm about having our name right we noticed he suddenly changed the title of his series.

In Belgian Biblestudents Deception- 7 Mr. Norris keeps telling untruths, now saying JF Rutherford otherwise known as Judge Rutherford

took over when Russell died as head of the Jehovah’s Witnesses. {Belgian Biblestudents Deception- 7}

Judge Rutherford being jailed for sedition against the Armed Forces is considered by Mr. Dave Norris a sign of him and Non-Trinitarian pacifists to be losers

Mr. Dave Norris in his series Belgian Biblestudents Deception- 8 all the time bringing in matters of prophesies in which we do not believe but which he wants to have his readers come to believe they are part of our teachings (which they are not at all)

Also when looking at the lies he writes about other denominations one an wonder what Mr. Norris his agenda really is?!? Problem would be in case many of his readers would consider his writings as bringing the truth about us and those other denominations.

Clearly he twists the truth and does as if we changed our teachings, but again uses material from an other  denomination to have it look as if it is ours.

Mr Norris looking at the New World Edition of the Bible which Jehovah’s Witnesses cherish, presenting it in his article Belgian Biblestudents Deception- 8 as if it is ours + asking to look at the changes

Mr. Norris also wants to give the impression when people read certain books, they are taken by those books and agree with everything what is in those books. He might perhaps follow everybody whose books he reads and may be limited in his amount of reading books and papers, only concentrating on what he agrees with. His knowledge about us and other groups he tries to pull down, shows clearly enough he did not do enough research and did not read enough about those groups, their leaders and teachers, often having no clue at all about their teachings, the same as with us. Or, in case he knows what our and their teachings are and what the background is of those groups he writes about, then it is clear he wants to spread fake news (therewith wanting to be popular in these times of someone speaking all the time of fake news) or does not mind to bring all sorts of inaccuracies to bring damage to those societies or communities.

Belgian Biblestudents Deception- 8 by D Norris on Exposing Christian error -about JW + Cd + false prophecies ~~~ Russell never made his own Bible or Scripture or never made our Holy Scriptures, like Norris wants his readers to believe.

Mr. Norris has also clearly a different view of what a cult is than what the state or a court would consider a cult or a sect. We can assure all his and our readers they do not have to worry that we would try to lure them in a sect and like certain churches do, then demand money and oblige them to stay with us. Every body is free to come and free to go in our churches (ecclesiae).

Only if one wants to join our community (as a member) we ask the candidate to believe in God as the Only True God and to believe that through God His only begotten beloved son salvation has come upon mankind and that this man of flesh and blood is the way to God and now the mediator between God and the people and is our high priest for God.

Psalms 83:18 (AKJV)
18 That men may know that you, whose name alone is JEHOVAH, are the most high over all the earth.

Romans 10:13 (AKJV)
13 For whoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved.

Matthew 3:16-17 (AKJV)
16 And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, see, the heavens were opened to him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting on him: 17 And see a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.

John 14:6 (AKJV)
6 Jesus said to him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man comes to the Father, but by me.

1 Timothy 2:5 (AKJV)
5 For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus;

Hebrews 12:24 (AKJV)
24 And to Jesus the mediator of the new covenant, and to the blood of sprinkling, that speaks better things that that of Abel.

Hebrews 3:1 (AKJV) Hebrews 3
1 Why, holy brothers, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest of our profession, Christ Jesus;

Hebrews 6:20 (AKJV)
20 Where the forerunner is for us entered, even Jesus, made an high priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec.

Clearly the intentions of Mr. Dave Norris can be seen in his many articles against Catholics and all sorts of Protestants, Emergent Church, Extreme Prophetic MovementHebrew Roots Movement, but also Judaism. Main churches also do not escape his acid pen. But Non-Trinitarians seem to work on him as a red cloth on a bull. He not only writes about them a lot of lies but also has no decency when they write to him in a polite manner. Some of his replies may be lot worse than the once shown here (and therefore we would not make public.).

An example of the way Mr. Dave Norris answers people who wrote to him

An example of the way how Mr. Dave Norris react to people when they ask him to show the link for the article he talks about in a previous reply, him writing: “I linked to an article from Wikipedia it clearly states your history. Russell did many false prophecies as in his successor Rutherford Hayes. You need to Bone up on your history.” And we having stated that there is no such page in Wikipedia telling about the history of the Belgian Biblestudents.

Though we can only find

Proof of “Belgian Bible Students” Wikipedia page not existing on 2018 August 11

 

+

Preceding

Charles Taze Russell and what he started

Was Russell and Rutherford “Illuminati”?

Watchtower Bible and Tract Society (WBTS) main groups that broke away

Different approach in organisation of services #1

Different approach in organisation of services #2

Different approach in organisation of services #3

Belonging to or being judged by

Jehovah’s Witnesses Circuit Assembly and a Pillar to freedom

++

Please find also to read

  1. International Biblestudents Association
  2. International Bible Students Association
  3. International Bible Students Association
  4. Jehovah’s Witness
  5. Charles Taze Russell
  6.  Dawn Bible Students Association
  7. Italian Bible Students Association in Hartford, CT Christian Millennial Fellowship
  8. What are Brothers in Christ
  9. Who are Christadelphians
  10. Against the anti Jehovah people
  11. Unmasking anti Jehovah sites and people
  12. Aim of Unmasking anti Jehovah people
  13. Joseph Rutherford with the iron glove
  14. To remove the whitewash of the Jehovah Witnesses as being the only true Bible Students and Bible Researchers
  15. Follower of Jesus part of a cult or a Christian
  16. Faith coming by hearing and sent preacher gift from God
  17. Jehovah steep rock and fortress, source of insight
  18. Confrontation by people telling lies to force others to avoid the targetted groups
  19. For those who do everything to stop the work of Christadelphians
  20. Who cries out against a hearty and uncompromising castigation of error
  21. re-frame obligation into conscious choices
  22. Christianity primarily a matter of imitation

+++

When Jesus speaks of obedience, he is speaking of a lifestyle of devotion to that which garners his devotion. Jesus’ disciples obey him by keeping what he keeps, and holding on to that which he holds… with a steadfast dedication. Once again we see our definition of a disciple emerge:

Necessity to imitate the Jewish master teacher Jeshua or Jesus Christ, following his commandments trying to become like him, is what the Belgian Bible Students do.

1 HS Banner

Related

  1. 4 attacks on Jehovah’s Witnesses churches linked -25k reward offered
  2. Why do Jehovah’s Witnesses preach?
  3. Romans 8:12-17 – Heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ
  4. Brothers in Christ – bond in Christ
  5. To the Compulsive Liar
  6. The Value of Truth
  7. Myths About Net Neutrality
  8. Lovers of God are Better Lovers
  9. Part 1 – Your Relationship with God
  10. 6 Priorities You Need
  11. Four – Understanding Our Purpose, p. 126 Jesus came to be what the original Adam was supposed to be: the very “image” of God.
  12. Four – Understanding Our Purpose, p. 128
  13. Six – Understanding the Holy Spirit, p. 176
  14. Six – Understanding the Holy Spirit, p. 178
  15. Imitating Jesus — From the new book Love Like Jesus: How Jesus Loved People (and how you can love like Jesus)
  16. Following Jesus requires you to grow up
  17. Proclamation
  18. Ep. 4 – Jehovah’s Witnesses
  19. Notes on the Proclaimers Book
  20. Some Prophetic Speculations
  21. Jehovah’s Witness Myopic View Of Jesus (I)
  22. Jehovah’s Witnesses and False Prophecies
  23. Dance me to the end

Jehovah’s Witnesses Circuit Assembly and a Pillar to freedom

A Mother and daughter

An other strange story which caught our attention. Again somebody who went to meet other Jehovah’s Witnesses, to attend the Jehovah’s Witnesses Circuit Assembly. This time that person could be a Jehovah’s Witness herself but did not like it so much, so why did she go in the first place.

She wrote

Between my being confined to the Jehovah’s Witness “way of life” and my parents being… the way they are, it makes it a challenge to maneuver things in order to spend those days with him as much as possible. {My Mother, the Bully}

She seems to be a daughter of a homemaker, a dedicated worker, a good JW, sensible, practical, giving, and responsible. She is a creator, artistic, free-minded, quite rebellious, self-focused according to her own saying {My Mother, the Bully}. Whilst her mother is repressed, self-disciplined, and morally bound she finds herself to be fluid, experimental, and abstract.

Could these things be at the root of a kind of jealousy? {My Mother, the Bully}

she wonders and let her thoughts linger

Does my reaching for more freedom trigger insecurities in her about her complete lack of it? {My Mother, the Bully}

Instability and felt mislead

Last April she felt like she exploded in anger and frustration towards “The Org”,

“telling M that I felt as if I had a “tiny elder in my head, screaming scriptures at me.” {Two Pillars of Freedom}

In this world everybody needs , and most of all youngsters are seeking some kind of stability when it comes to their spiritual beliefs or non beliefs and want to build up a spiritual life full of spiritual well-being. For many it may take years to find a place in the world of atheists and believers. Lots of people have to go on a calvary route to find their way to a belief, believing in God or not believing in a god or the God.

English: Personal bible study Português: Estud...

Personal bible study essential part for coming to the truth (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

For us serious bible students it surprises us that this girl, though when grown up in a JW family came to believe she is been completely misled about the Bible, and that she feels she is never really been taught about God. Not being JW, not knowing their exact ways of teaching in the church community, we only can see what they let the outside world to be known. From their public publications we can only get the impression they do everything to get others to know God. All their teaching seems very God centred when you leave out the misleading teachings of their organisation and the position of the 144 000.

A bait to trap many

We are aware of the danger where the writer finds her possible anger and disappointment. It is true that

The Organization could’ve used any bait to trap the masses. Organizations do it every day. Cults appeal to people’s desires for all kinds of things – this one appealed to the desire to understand the Bible & know “the truth” about God.

and then she gets to the core of the big problem (we think)

The Bible is only the bait for them, a secondary issue – The Organization is the primary concern: gaining and keeping peoples’ complete unquestioning obedience. If they can use the Bible in order to accomplish that, so be it. {Two Pillars of Freedom}

That last bit is naturally a serious accusation. But we fear that what we said already to so many people that those questions in their magazine and the way how they treat verses can be sometimes dubious and often smell to brainwashing (mind control)or indoctrination, the organisation having thought control over all its members.

Reminding who is the Way

Too many JW, like lots of so called Christians do forget that Jesus told he is the Way to God. The Bible also tells us that this sent one from God has become the high priest and the one mediator between God and man. This last saying excludes all human organisations as a necessity to link to God. Jesus (rabbi Jeshua) is our link to the Only One True God of Israel.
We do not need ordained priests, ministers or organisations to dictate what the Words of God say and to dictate what we do have to do or may not do, and control us. Guidance belongs to the Word of God itself. God did not provide such a difficult word to understand for mankind, which would exclude all uneducated people (Bété people or ‘bast shoes‘). No, all people, those who have been to school but also who have not been to school, should be able to understand God’s Word.

The bible does not speak about One and only one organisation that He would take, but He gives an indication by His only begotten son that there may be many different groups and organisations, all part of the Body of Christ and necessary for that Body of Christ. Many people think religion is wrong and endangers man, because than man would control them, but than they have chosen the wrong religion, because in the religious ways of the True God there is no man who should be in control of others, all man should give themselves into the hands of God, the Divine Creator, Who is not a man but a Spirit.

As people we can give ourselves to Christ, willing to be under his guidance. That is our choice and makes us to become Christians or ‘being Christian‘, it is following Christ Jesus.

Jehovah for millennia not using an organisation

Since the early Christians continually there were people who stayed truthful to Christ Jesus his teaching, no matter of the false teachers and churches coming into being. even when the pressure from the Roman empire became so great that lots of Christians chose to agree with Greco-Roman teaching of a three-headed god and chose to accept the Trinity. Though the Roman Catholic Church came into existence and later got many schisms, several God faithfully abiding continued their life of worship of the One and Only One True God. There was no world wide organisation at all to lead God’s People, like there was also no such organisation before the birth of Jesus. The shepherding of God’s People was done by individual men and women, who were chosen by God Himself (the nevim or prophets) or went for God, allowed by God to live and preach. The words given to mankind for enabling to find eternal life was not provided by man or a human organisation, but by God Himself. No prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation.

The JW Organisation claims erroneous that Charles Taze Russell is their founder. But he never claimed to be a prophet nor wanted a human directive organisation. He, like many  Biblestudents, very well knew that the gathering of people is done by God Himself and that The Word is a quality or aspect of God Himself.

As Facts About Jehovah’s Witnesses writes

Watchtower makes the claim that “Jehovah has always guided his servants in an organized way.” (You Can Live Forever in Paradise on Earth p.192) If that is the case, how were they guided and organised during the dark ages? What group represented God’s organization immediately prior to the formation of the Watchtower Society in the 1884 by Charles Russell, and why didn’t Russell just follow them? {Does Jehovah require an Organization?}

Does Jehovah require an Organization?

Watch Tower headquarters in Columbia Heights, Brooklyn.

When the Jehovah’s Witnesses Watchtower Bible and tract Society in Brooklyn with their different corporations [Watchtower Bible and Tract Society of New York, Christian Congregation of Jehovah’s Witnesses, Religious Order of Jehovah’s Witnesses, Kingdom Support Services, International Bible Students Association (IBSA), Associação Torre de Vigia de Bíblias e Tratados (Brazil), Association of Jehovah’s Witnesses of East Africa, Los Testigos de Jehová en México, Wachtturm-Gesellschaft, Selters/Taunus (Germany), Watchtower Bible & Tract Society Of Australia, Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society of Canada, European Association of Jehovah’s Christian Witnesses (EAJCW)] would be the sole organisation under the direction of God and when it is changing so many times of its teachings, would this mean that God is not giving the full truth to His own chosen ones or that God is not sure what He can give them for information?

How can it be than when the organisation is God’s only instrument that members of it dispose one of their very important main writers like Raymond Franz, former member of the Governing Body? Does that mean that God first tells others a person is one of the 144 000 but then takes somebody else in his place and get rid of him after he has been used to produce an enormous amount of good literature? He was one of the researchers who created Aid to Bible Understanding, the first doctrinal and biblical encyclopedia of Jehovah’s Witnesses, published in full in 1971.

When the leaders of the Watchtower Society, the Governing Body, say themselves that they are appointed by Christ and the only means by which he directs his true followers today, how can they than demand certain people from the board to resign?

They themselves write

“Consider, too, the fact that Jehovah’s organization alone, in all the earth, is directed by God’s holy spirit or active force. (Zech. 4:6) Only this organization functions for Jehovah’s purpose and to his praise. To it alone God’s Sacred Word, the Bible, is not a sealed book.” Watchtower 1973 Jul 1 p.402

Saying this they also give the impression the bible is not yet complete or is not able to give full biblical Wisdom to mankind, without that body of God, their organisation.

“However, the Governing Body are appointed through the holy spirit under the direction of Jehovah God and Jesus Christ.” Watchtower 1990 Mar 15 p.18

 

When that Governing Body is appointed by God through His Holy Spirit how can it than be, when led by His Spirit, that there have been taken place so many disputes and that such dismissals occurred?

Would the organisation be the only means God can have contact with people nowadays? According to us that would place man above the Power of God, Him being not able to call people for Himself and to give them wisdom. As in the precious centuries it is still God Who calls people and gives insight to those who are willing to open their heart to Him, whatever there being The Organisation, a organisation or no organisation at all near to them.

Witnessing for Jehovah

A Jehovah’s Witness distributing literature at Marble Arch tube station in London

We are sure the Jehovah’s Witnesses may be part of that Body of Christ, members of people under Christ witnessing for Jehovah. But in many other denominations or churches you may find also people witnessing for this One and the Same God.

Strangely enough the organisation of the Jehovah’s Witnesses does not believe that individual people are able to bring men and women to God without their organisation. They consider themselves the only righteous way to God. This dismisses totally the position of Christ Jesus, who according to the Bible is the Way to God.

Key factor to being a Witness

According to us the key factor to being a Witness for Jehovah is to stand up for Him and not for one or another earthly organisation and when the Jehovah’s Witnesses Organisation would be a Godly organisation why did so many teachings changed and why did so many prophesies by them did not come through? Were people not warned for those who prophesied and whose prophesies did not come through? are we not told that such people could be false teachers?

We kindly ask our readers and all people walking around this earth to know that Jehovah’s Witnesses are not the only ones witnessing for Jehovah God.

It is belonging to the “Organization” that distinguishes one of Jehovah’s Witnesses and makes them feel solely worthy of salvation, but Jesus died for all people and God’s grace is given to all living souls.

Requirements for Salvation

The way the WBTS presents itself to mankind gives the impression that membership of their organization is essential for salvation. If this would be so, why were we not told by God Himself or by His son?

The word “organization” never appears in the Bible, yet organization appears 16,789 times on the 2006 Watchtower Library CD. This is because belonging to an organization is not a Scriptural requirement, but rather a common concept amongst high control groups as a technique of building a member’s high degree of conviction and uniformity. {Does Jehovah require an Organization?}

Though the Watchtower claims that belonging to an organization is essential for salvation.

To receive everlasting life in the earthly Paradise we must identify that organization and serve God as part of it.” Watchtower 1983 Feb 15 p.12

When you read the whole bible, the Hebrew and Messianic books, nowhere shall you find an indication of God going to provide a worldwide organisation other than the theocratic government of rabbi Jeshua from the new world’s capital Jerusalem.

It is not stated in either the Old or New Testaments that membership of an organization is a requirement of eternal salvation. The Scriptures repeatedly state that it is faith in Jesus and the Father that results in everlasting life. Instead we are told of salvation by the blood of Christ. It is not by keeping to certain rituals or organisations that we can receive salvation. We do not need to be a soldier of a worldly organisation but should be soldiers for Christ by whom salvation comes to us.

2 You, therefore, my child,+ keep on acquiring power in the undeserved kindness that is in Christ Jesus; and the things you heard from me that were supported by many witnesses,+ these things entrust to faithful men, who, in turn, will be adequately qualified to teach others. As a fine soldier+ of Christ Jesus, take your part in suffering adversity.+ No man serving as a soldier involves himself* in the commercial businesses* of life, in order to gain the approval of the one who enrolled him as a soldier. And even in the games, anyone who competes is not crowned unless he has competed according to the rules.+ The hardworking farmer must be the first to partake of the fruits. Give constant thought to what I am saying; the Lord will give you understanding* in all things. …  10 For this reason I go on enduring all things for the sake of the chosen ones,+ so that they too may obtain the salvation that is through Christ Jesus, along with everlasting glory {2 Timothy 2:2-7, 10)

    • 2 Timothy 2:10 Kingdom Interlinear
    • 10 διὰ through τοῦτο this πάντα all (things) ὑπομένω I am enduring διὰ through τοὺς the ἐκλεκτούς, chosen (ones), ἵνα in order that καὶ also αὐτοὶ they σωτηρίας of salvation τύχωσιν they might obtain τῆς of the (one) ἐν in Χριστῷ Christ Ἰησοῦ Jesus μετὰ with δόξης glory αἰωνίου. everlasting.

Faith in the sent one from God

It is by faith in the sent one from God, rabbi Jeshua, the Kristos or Christ Jesus, we may have the opportunity not to become destroyed but to have everlasting life. We all should all remember that everything which is of the earth is earthly, and speaks of the earth: he that comes from heaven, the sent one from God, is above all. Him being above any organisation is the one we could and should follow, as brothers and sisters in him who has eternal life.

14 And just as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness,+ so the Son of man must be lifted up,+ 15 so that everyone believing in him may have everlasting life.+

16 “For God loved the world so much that he gave his only-begotten Son,+ so that everyone exercising faith in him might not be destroyed but have everlasting life.+ 17 For God did not send his Son into the world for him to judge the world, but for the world to be saved through him.+ 18 Whoever exercises faith in him is not to be judged.+ Whoever does not exercise faith has been judged already, because he has not exercised faith in the name of the only-begotten Son of God.+

31 The one who comes from above+ is over all others. The one who is from the earth is from the earth and speaks of things of the earth. The one who comes from heaven is over all others.+ 32 He bears witness to what he has seen and heard,+ but no man accepts his witness.+ 33 Whoever has accepted his witness has put his seal to it* that God is true.+ 34 For the one whom God sent speaks the sayings of God,+ for He does not give the spirit sparingly.* 35 The Father loves the Son+ and has given all things into his hand.+ 36 The one who exercises faith in the Son has everlasting life;+ the one who disobeys the Son will not see life,+ but the wrath of God remains upon him.+ {John 3:14-18, 31-36}

Connection with the son of God

Let us be sure to come to Jesus first, because not an organisation here on earth would be our gateway, but because Jesus is the door to the Kingdom of God.

44 How can you believe, when you are accepting glory from one another and you are not seeking the glory that is from the only God?+ {John 5:44}

So Jesus said again: “Most truly I say to you, I am the door for the sheep.+ All those who have come in place of me are thieves and plunderers; but the sheep have not listened to them. I am the door; whoever enters through me will be saved, and that one will go in and out and find pasturage.+ {John 10:7-9}

This means everlasting life,+ their coming to know you,* the only true God,+ and the one whom you sent, Jesus Christ.+ {John 17:3}

Living under Christ Jesus

Those who want to have everlasting life, their taking in knowledge of the Only True God, them having regret of what they have done wrong and asking for forgiveness, wanting to live under Christ, the one whom Jehovah sent forth and who belongs to God.

16 Do you not know that you yourselves are God’s temple+ and that the spirit of God dwells in you?+ 17 If anyone destroys the temple of God, God will destroy him; for the temple of God is holy, and you are that temple.+

18 Let no one deceive himself: If anyone among you thinks he is wise in this system of things,* let him become a fool, so that he may become wise. 19 For the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God, for it is written: “He catches the wise in their own cunning.”+ 20 And again: “Jehovah* knows that the reasonings of the wise men are futile.”+ 21 So let no one boast in men; for all things belong to you, 22 whether Paul or A·polʹlos or Ceʹphas*+ or the world or life or death or things now here or things to come, all things belong to you; 23 in turn you belong to Christ;+ Christ, in turn, belongs to God. {1 Corinthians 3:16-23}

The Organisation playing the mediator of man and God, man and Christ

As the female writer of ‘Finding the truth: In recovery from Jehovah’s Witnesses & alcoholism‘ at last came to see, when she sees a

WT quote in direct opposition:

“The other sheep should never forget that their salvation depends on their active support of Christ’s anointed “brothers” still on earth.” WT March 15 2012 pg. 20 {Two Pillars of Freedom}

She concludes

Check and mate. It seems so obvious, so simple. The Org has taken it upon themselves to become the mediator of man and God, man and Christ; completely ignoring what the Bible has to say on the matter and making themselves Lords over man. {Two Pillars of Freedom}

There are more things, of course, that have been giving me evidence that The Org is not God’s ‘spirit-directed organization,’ but these two points seem to be building some kind of foundation in my mind. They seem to be the things that come closest to unraveling the whole thing; the answers to the tiny screaming elder in my head. I’ll keep building more until I can silence him completely, or maybe one day oust him permanently. {Two Pillars of Freedom}

We only can hope more people shall come to see the twists in their teachings and their focus on the organisation instead of focussing more on the works of Jesus and his heavenly Father.

+

Preceding articles

Oklahoma City Regional Convention of Jehovah’s Witnesses

An atheist writer meeting Jehovah’s witnesses far from home

Politics and power first priority #1

Charles Taze Russell and what he started

Was Russell and Rutherford “Illuminati”?

A Society pleading poverty

Following articles:

Jesus’ footstep followers, irrespective of sectarian lines

Authority from the one God to one mediator between God and men

++

Additional reading

  1. Religious Practices around the world
  2. Religions and Mainliners
  3. Denominationalism exists because?
  4. Silence, devotion, Salafists, quietists, weaponry, bombings, books, writers and terrorists
  5. Why is it that Christians don’t understand Muslims and Muslims do not understand Christians?
  6. Responses to Radical Muslims and Radical Christians
  7. Finding and Understanding Words and Meanings
  8. Some one or something to fear #3 Cases, folks and outing
  9. Subcutaneous power for humanity 5 Loneliness, Virtual and real friends
  10. In a world which knows no peace sharing blessed hope
  11. How long to wait before bringing religiousness and spirituality in practice
  12. Breaking up with a cult
  13. Christianity without the Trinity
  14. Writers needed to preach to non-believers
  15. Catholicism, Anabaptism and Crisis of Christianity
  16. Those who call the Christadelphians a cult
  17. A man from the North wanting to have control in Belgium
  18. Quibbling siblings united or allied children of an organisation or a church
  19. On the Affirmation of Scripture
  20. Not many coming out with their community name
  21. To remove the whitewash of the Jehovah Witnesses as being the only true Bible Students and Bible Researchers
  22. Around C.T.Russell
  23. Russell himself never claimed to be a prophet.
  24. Misunderstandings concerning C.T. Russell
  25. Surprising figures about Jehovah Witnesses
  26. Russell and his beliefs
  27. Biblestudents & T.C.Russell
  28. Bijbelonderzoekers en Russelism / Bible researchers and Russelism
  29. Charles Taze Russell never claimed to have found a new religion, or a new church.
  30. A visible organisation on earth
  31. When not seeing or not finding a biblically sound church
  32. When seeing a biblically sound church
  33. Ecclesia to exist, grow and communities to have people communicating with each other
  34. The Big conversation Why it matters
  35. Soviet Witnesses
  36. Date Setting
  37. A British judge rules that mother can’t indoctrinate son with religion
  38. Retrieving some older articles previously placed on Multiply
  39. Bringing Good News into the world
  40. Deaf helped in their ability to progress in this community
  41. Jehovah’s Witnesses not only group that preach the good news
  42. Russia’s battle against the Jehovah’s Witnesses
  43. Jehovah’s Witnesses Shunning ex-members adverse effects on family relationships
  44. Disappointed expectations
  45. Getting out of the dark corners of this world
  46. Saved through grace not through keeping rituals
  47. Actions to be a reflection of openness of heart
  48. Sealed in their foreheads
  49. Solution for Willing hearts filled with gifts
  50. The Bride New Jerusalem
  51. Looking for something or for the Truth and what it might be and self-awareness
  52. Lovers of God, seekers and lovers of truth
  53. The one who set the standard
  54. Revelation 1:8 – Who is Speaking?
  55. Follower of Jesus part of a cult or a Christian
  56. A small company of Jesus’ footstep follower
  57. The longer you wait
  58. Preaching Christ Is Not Enough

+++

Further related articles

  1. Celebrating Christendom’s Demise?
  2. Nineteenth Century Protestant Doctrines of the Trinity
  3. “Should You Believe in the Trinity?”
  4. Why I Am a Christian.
  5. Christ didn’t come to help us, He came to Include us
  6. Change Your Village
  7. Pouring Into Others
  8. Who Are Jehovah’s Witnesses?
  9. “Ye Are My Witnesses, Saith Jehovah Baldwin: Arkansas Man Arrested For Firing Shots At Jehovah’s Witnesses Who Approached Him On His Lawn
  10. Rosary No More!! Why I Stopped Praying The Rosary!! (Testimony of a Former Roman Catholic)
  11. The Semiology of Jehovah’s Witnesses
  12. Prophecy, power and weakness
  13. Serena Williams and Jehovah’s Witnesses
  14. A Hymn From Christendom in July 2016 JW Broadcasting?
  15. Is it blind faith, or tradition?
  16. The Decision
  17. I Am Not A Victim
  18. Jehovah’s witnesses
  19. It is not a trip at all
  20. Day in the life..
  21. Why Do Some JWs Live A Lie?
  22. Do people get a second chance?
  23. Why do EX – Jehovahs Witnesses struggle to find a church?
  24. Conditional Love
  25. Sheep and Wolves
  26. Warning: You Might Get Kicked Out of the Kingdom Hall by a Donkey
  27. What to do with Jehovah’s Witnesses?
  28. Exodus Chapter 8
  29. Witness to Jehovahs like Frank & Joe Hardy
  30. Jehovah’s (False) Witnesses
  31. Trust issues…and then some
  32. Charles Taze Russell – “Don’t read your Bible”
  33. Watchtower Study June 5, 2016—Being Faithful Leads to God’s Approval
  34. Finding the Way
  35. World’s Fastest Growing Religion?
  36. A fallen Prince
  37. Prince found ’real happiness’ as Jehovah’s Witness, talking about Bible, longtime friend and bassist says
  38. A Different Sort of Church History 1
  39. Who were the Arians and what did they believe?
  40. Two Pillars of Freedom
  41. Why do Jehovah’s Witnesses preach?
  42. Two Classes Of Christians?
  43. Are Jehovah’s Witnesses Christian?
  44. My first false baptism
  45. You are Welcome to be Unwelcome….
  46. The Sting of Slavery
  47. Jehovah’s Witness Convention 2016—A Weekend of Robbery and Manipulation
  48. Review of talk at “Remain loyal to Jehovah” 2016 convention of Jehovahs Witnesses
  49. Jehovah’s Witness Convention 2016—Maintain Loyalty Symposium
  50. On False Prophets and False Accusers
  51. Jehovah’s Witnesses and the Worship of Jesus
  52. Growing up a Jehovah’s Witness—Anxiety at a Young Age
  53. Sgt. Robert Wilson III Ceremony for Valor Showcases Watchtower Hypocrisy
  54. Late Prince honored by Jehovah’s Witnesses
  55. The Picture of the Governing Body
  56. Witnessing to JW’s Enhances Witnessing to Others
  57. Is Watchtower Running out of Money?
  58. How Jehovah’s Witnesses Think
  59. Dating A Jehovah’s Witness
  60. Reminder for uncertain times: “Heeding advance warning can save your life!”
  61. Numbers in Scripture
  62. The Mark in the Forehead
  63. Who Do You Say Jesus Is?
  64. Religion Roundup
  65. #Islam & Muslim’s and the #Murder of a #Catholic so called #Priest in #France. More lying #Propaganda for the deceived Catholic’s. They actually think that they are being persecuted for their belief’s, but actually, it is simply the #Ignorance of #Islam. — Boot The Door And Shout Through The Crack
  66. In the dust of the Rabbi- Day 67
  67. Spiritual Sobriety: Stumbling Back to Faith When Good Religion Goes Bad
  68. On the Russian evangelism law
  69. Is doctrine important? What’s the danger in deviating from sound doctrine?
  70. Religions are Cults: I Refuse to Let Another Man Control my Life
  71. Suspected Cult Leader Disguised as Anti-Cult “Expert”
  72. Dangerous Cult: House Of Yahweh
  73. Goin’ Through The Gate
  74. Why you wouldn’t want to be a Jim Jones liberal
  75. Reclaiming the Church of God
  76. The Master Manipulator
  77. Ungracious “Grace” Leaders
  78. Bunkeroos vs. Scientologists
  79. Scientology Floggers
  80. China, Cults, And Persecution (oh my!)
  81. Beware of Shincheonji!!
  82. Video on the Shincheonji Cult!
  83. Is Young Life a cult?
  84. The recons flee defeated on Christology

+++

Politics and power first priority #1

The early days of Christianity

2.2.1. Politics and power first priority

File:ArsameiaSockelII.jpg

Mtihras; Dexiosis-Relief from Arsameia by Nymphaios, Turkey – Photo Klaus-Peter Simon

It was just as impossible to bring men back to the old simplicity as to make them return to the old pagan beliefs and to the national form of worship. Consequently, the empire had to identify itself with the progressive movement, employ as far as possible the existing resources of national life, exercise tolerance, make concessions to the new religious tendencies, and receive the Germanic tribes into the empire. This conviction constantly spread, especially as Constantine’s father had obtained good results there from. In Gaul, Britain, and Spain, where Constantius Chlorus ruled, peace and contentment prevailed, and the prosperity of the provinces visibly increased, while in the East prosperity was undermined by the existing confusion and instability. But it was especially in the western part of the empire that the veneration of Mithras predominated. Constantine the Great wondered if it would not be possible to gather all the different nationalities around his altars. Could not Sol Deus Invictus, to whom even Constantine dedicated his coins for a long time, or Sol Mithras Deus Invictus, venerated by Diocletian and Galerius, become the supreme god of the empire? Constantine may have pondered over this. Nor had he absolutely rejected the thought even after a miraculous event had strongly influenced him in favour of the God of the Christians. [1]

For political reasons after his victory against his rival Maxentius, Constantine granted tolerance to the Christians and took a further step in their favour. He was the first Roman emperor who recognized the church’s resistance against a pagan Roman state established upon the ruler cult as a political factor. In 313 Licinius and he issued at Milan the famous joint edict of tolerance. This declared that the two emperors had deliberated as to what would be advantageous for the security and welfare of the empire and had, above all, taken into consideration the service which man owed to the “deity”. Therefore they had decided to grant Christians and all others freedom in the exercise of religion. Everyone might follow that religion which he considered the best. They hoped that “the deity enthroned in heaven” would grant favour and protection to the emperors and their subjects. This was in itself quite enough to throw the pagans into the greatest astonishment. When the wording of the edict is carefully examined there is clear evidence of an effort to express the new thought in a manner too unmistakable to leave any doubt. The edict contains more than the belief, to which Galerius at the end had given voice that the persecutions were useless, and it granted the Christians freedom of worship, while at the same time it endeavoured not to affront the pagans. Without doubt the term deitywas deliberately chosen, for it does not exclude a heathen interpretation. The cautious expression probably originated in the imperial chancery, where pagan conceptions and pagan forms of expression still lasted for a long time. Nevertheless the change from the bloody persecution of Christianity to the toleration of it, a step which implied its recognition, may have startled many heathens and may have excited and given them a chance to blend their religion with the other one.

Arch of Galerius (detail)

Arch of Galerius (detail) (Photo credit: George M. Groutas)

The imprisoned Christians were released from the prisons and mines, and were received by their brethren in the Faith with acclamations of joy; the churches were again filled, and those who had fallen away sought forgiveness. Though it was good that there were religious people who remained in the original Christian faith and were conscious of the dangers of this political handshake.

Constantine had become master of the Roman world and was determined on restoring ecclesiastical order in the East, as already in the West he had undertaken to put down the Donatists at the Council of Arles. He managed to come to an agreement with most of the church leaders by giving them also power, just for changing some teachings, giving in some ways of thinking, and of celebrations. In the dedication of Constantinople in 330 a ceremonial half pagan, half Christian was used. The chariot of the sun-god was set in the marketplace, and over its head was placed the Cross, sign of the god of evil Tamuz, for Christ, while the Kyrie Eleison was sung. Shortly before his death Constantine confirmed the privileges of the priests of the ancient gods. Many other actions of his have also the appearance of half-measures, as if he himself had wavered and had always held in reality to some form of syncretistic religion.[2] Thus he commanded the heathen troops to make use of a prayer in which any monotheist could join, and which ran thus: “We acknowledge thee alone as god and king, we call upon thee as our helper. From thee have we received the victory, by thee have we overcome the foe. To thee we owe that good which we have received up to now, from thee do we hope for it in the future. To thee we offer our entreaties and implore thee that thou wilt preserve to us our emperor Constantine and his god-fearing sons for many years uninjured and victorious.”[3]

The Church tolerated the cult of the emperor under many forms. It was permitted to speak of the divinity of the emperor, of the sacred palace, the sacred chamber, and of the altar of the emperor, without being considered on this account an idolater. From this point of view Constantine’s religious change was relatively trifling; it consisted of little more than the renunciation of a formality. For what his predecessors had aimed to attain by the use of all their authority, and at the cost of incessant bloodshed, was in truth only the recognition of their own divinity; Constantine gained this end, though he renounced the offering of sacrifices to himself.


[1] The original Catholic Encyclopedia

[2] Syncrtism

[3] http://oce.catholic.com/index.php?title=Constantine_the_Great

+

Previously: Hellenistic influences

Next: Politics and power first priority #2

Dutch version: Politiek en macht de eerste prioriteit #1

+++

File:Vatican-Apostolic Palace-Battle of Milvian Bridge.jpg

Vatican City, Apostolic Palace, Constantine and The Battle of Milvian Bridge – Photo Jean-Christophe Benoist

  • Constantine’s Gift to Christianity (insightscoop.typepad.com)
    On October 28, 312, Emperor Constantine met Emperor Maxentius in battle just outside the city of Rome at the Milvian Bridge, spanning the Tiber. This battle—occurring exactly 1,700 years ago—is one of the most important events in the history of Christendom, since it was through Constantine’s victory that Christendom began. It is a battle well worth reflecting upon.
  • Constantine’s Gift to Christianity: Catholic World Report (nebraskaenergyobserver.wordpress.com)
    There are, for example, those who take Constantine’s conversion as the beginning of the end of real Christianity. Christianity, they argue, is the Christianity of the early Church, the Church before it became favored and hence entangled with the empire, the pure Church, the Church before Constantine, the Church of the martyrs.

    The problem with this romantic vision of the pure early Church is that it wasn’t shared by the early Church. We owe it to them to take things, first of all, from their point of view.

  • October 27, 312 – Constantine’s Conversion (gentlereformation.org)
    Constantine reported having a dream in the night. In that dream, he saw the Chi-Rho sign (the first two letters of the Greek word for Christ), with the promise “in this sign, conquer.” Constantine believed he had received a sign from the God of the Bible, and commanded that his soldiers to place the Chi-Rho sign on their shields as they went into battle.
  • Christianity and Constantine 1700 Years Later (reflectionandchoice.wordpress.com)
    The defeat of Maxentius is a significant step in Constantine’s quest to become master of the entire Roman Empire, but historians have usually emphasized it as the turning point in his relationship with Christianity.
    +
    Constantine favored Christianity with money and attention and set a trajectory for its continued growth. He did not, however, make Christianity the official religion of the empire. That move would be made a few generations later.
  • Late Antique Crossbow Fibula Looted from Turin (adrianmurdoch.typepad.com)
    Dorothy King at Lootbusters passed over details of a crossbow fibula which was stolen from the Museo d’Antichita in Turin.
    +
    CONSTANTINE CAES VIVAS (May Constantine caesar live)… is an indisputable reference to the emperor who was going to have a greater impact on history than any other of the tetrarchs, the future augustus Constantine the Great.
  • Constantine and Christendom: Glory or Calamity? | Catholic Lane (nebraskaenergyobserver.wordpress.com)
    how the church became allied (sometimes, anyway) with the state, and how armed resistance to the state is also sometimes allowed under our doctrines. All of this as well as much more come from Constantine, who provides one of the major turning points in Christianity.

    Here we see the beginning of the Church Militant, and the beginning of Christendom as we understand it. We have spoken here  of the importance of this to western civilization.
    +
    At first, Christians found it hard to adjust to this radical transformation.  In the end they found it impossible to discern the divine will without reference to salvation history.  Our ancestors in the Faith had to take divine Providence as it actually transpired, not as one might suppose the Great Helmsman of history could more fortuitously have steered the course of events. Proud minds ready to second-guess God wonder why the Divinity did not stop Christians from having recourse to the sword; or why God let the Church be sullied by immersion in power politics.

  • The historical evolution between the churches and politics in the Roman Empire (perspectives11.wordpress.com)
    Christianity started out as a small group of followers. They did not have a place of worship; they would often reunite at each other’s homes.In the early 60’s AD, a fire broke out in Rome that destroyed most of the city, emperor Nero blamed the Christians for it and ordered them to be killed. At the time, most of the Romans were Pagan; they believed in many Gods, as well as the emperor was considered a semi divine monarch. Christians were persecuted for centuries in the Roman Empire, and executed by getting torn apart by dogs or burnt alive.
  • The day Christianity became a fighting faith (thewesternexperience.com)
    + Jonathan Kay: The day Christianity became a fighting faith
    Constantine was a conqueror. And like all conquerors, he wanted to memorialize himself in word and stone. “Over his reign, he gave the Church an equal place alongside the traditional official cults, and lavished wealth on it,” writes Dirmaid MacCulloch in his 2009 opus Christianity: The first 3,000 years. “Christianity would now embark on its long intoxication with architecture, previously a necessarily restricted passion. Among [Constantine’s] many other donations were 50 monumental copies of the Bible commissioned from Bishop Eusebius’ specialist scriptorium in Caesarea: an extraordinary expenditure … for which the parchment alone would have required the death of around 5,000 cows.”

    In Constantinople (formerly Byzantium), Constantine created a network of churches devoted to various saints, festivals and holy days, thereby establishing the pattern of prayer-by-station that remains a feature of Christian pilgrimage to this day. He also promoted the practice of convening councils of bishops to settle questions of religious doctrine. This included the First Council of Nicaea in 325 A.D. (presided over by Constantine in person), whose eponymous creed created the foundational dogma that Christ is “begotten, not made” “from the substance of the Father, God from God, Light from Light.”

    Unfortunately, Constantine used the same venue to promote the theme of Jew-hatred that would remain a stubborn part of mainstream Christian thought and culture until well into the 20th century. “At the council, we also considered the issue of our holiest day, Easter,” he wrote. “In the first place, it seemed very unworthy for us to keep this most sacred feast following the custom of the Jews, a people who have soiled their hands in a most terrible outrage, and have thus polluted their souls, and are now deservedly blind.”

     

A Society pleading poverty

It is incredible how many people can get enthusiast to do the work Jesus had asked from them. All those who call themselves Christian should go out in the world and preach the Gospel of the Good News of the coming Kingdom of God. Though we are afraid we can not find many Christians bringing that Good News worldwide. But it is also wrong of the Jehovah Witnesses to think they are the only ones who bear witness. We do agree the other groups, like Mormons, Abrahamic Faith, Church of God people and Biblestudents and Christadelphians are minority groups. But they also try to bring the Word of God to as many places as they can. Those groups are by a lot of people considered to be sects or cults, because they do not adhere to the mainstream believe.

Politics and acceptance

In the world it can go very strange with ideas about those preaching groups. As soon as one of the groups becomes more powerful or has something to offer politicly it can be changed. For example the Baptists in Belgium are a sect or cult according to the State committee about sects, while in the United States they are one of the mainstream churches. The Mormon Church in Belgium and the United States are also mentioned under the list of sects. But recently the Billy Graham group threw his support behind Mitt Romney due to his clear support of biblical values of marriage and opposition to abortion and lots of Americans suddenly do not consider the Mormons a cult but the best Christian value. The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association seems to find Mormons being Christians like they are, and a group they do not need to evangelize, while the others are non-trinitarian and therefore not Christian and in high need to get to know Christ. The only thing is that they forget that they themselves are not following Christ Jesus as it should and that they believe other values than thought in the Holy Scriptures, the Book of books which Bible Sudents,  Jehovah Witnesses, Christadelphians, Church of Abrahamic Faith and others like Messianic Jews take as the Book to follow.

Jehovah's Witnesses House Bratislava

Jehovah’s Witnesses House Bratislava (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Today we can not only see hiding the light of the Gospel under a bushel in the name of politics, some groups do not mind bringing cover-up policy, like the Roman Catholic Church and the Jehovah Witnesses about the paedophilia acts of their preachers. The ongoing ‘accidents’ and ‘files being lost’ in the court case of the archbishopric Mechelen and the diocese Bruges show clearly how politics and Roman Catholic Church are still interwoven in the jurisdiction system of Belgium, though the last few years the Roman Catholic Church had to give the power over the country to the Banks. The Witnesses kept all the time quiet about the matters that went wrong between youngsters and people in charge of certain Kingdomhalls.

Sanctity of life and love

The sanctity of life is extremely imperative to our foundation of love and creation and the last few years many so called Christian organisations are making a joke out of it. The main motivating factor to do missions or to proclaim the Word of God needs to be love. This love in-comprehends the respect to others, also other believers. But those who want to proclaim the Word of God do also have to live according this Word of God. They should be an example for all people, believers and non-believers. They also should be honest to all people, believers and non-believers. It can not be that they would fool their own believers and do wrong to their own congregation. But this is what we have seen happening the last few years with the Roman Catholic Church and by the Jehovah Witnesses.

Energy, time and money spend

The apostle Paul may perhaps have written that he suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, but that does not mean that the church or organisation should take as much as they can from their followers because they should count it as of no value and have to consider any worldly material as rubbish.

Photos by Patrick Dove/Standard-TimesSan Angelo members of the Jehovah's Witnesses faith walk into a new Kingdom Hall built on Pullium Street across from the Shannon Health System's St. John's Campus. The new building can hold both English- and Spanish-speaking services at the same time.

San Angelo members of the Jehovah’s Witnesses faith walk into a new Kingdom Hall built on Pullium Street across from the Shannon Health System’s St. John’s Campus. The new building can hold both English- and Spanish-speaking services at the same time. – Photo by Patrick Dove/Standard-Times

For years the people who followed the Watchtower Society gave all of their best to the Society with the idea they where giving everything for the Work of God. And yes it is good that we can give to the work of God, and we should do that. But when we give our time and money to an organisation to do the work of God, they have to value it and make good use of it. Lots of Jehovah Witnesses have been motivated by love, when they did their preaching work. From door to door they went and offered leaflets and Watchtower brochures to the people to whom they could talk to. Several did it for many years without regretting the work they do or did. Others you can see at their faces  or at their customary uniform clothing that they are not so interested any more and that it has become a burden. With other organisations mostly the people quit if things get tough, but we must say that those Jehovah Witnesses, no matter what happens, continue in their ardent task of telling others about the end times.

A heart for work

The church is the tool God uses to push his good news into every hidden corner of the planet to shine his glorious light and God uses many people all over the world to do His job on earth. those who can do such work in love of the Almighty should be pleased to do it. Organisations who can have enough people willing to join the work should be glad and thank God for them.

“Do You Have ‘a Heart for Working’?” has been asked worldwide at the three-day conventions of the Jehovah Witnesses.

Nehemiah made many sacrifices to see that the walls in Jerusalem were rebuilt and the gates remade so as to give God’s restored people a secure future. There is an article regularly featured in the Watchtower magazine entitled “Learn from God’s Word.” It helps others and the faithful to deepen their knowledge of God, His Will and purpose.

Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men, (Colossians 3:23) is written in the Holy Scriptures, so many Christians do their work for their church heartily as though they were doing it for the Lord and not merely for people. So the work should be done not by mere force and necessity, grudgingly, and with murmurings, but from the heart, and with good will, having a true, real, and hearty affection for their masters, having their good and interest at heart, and a delight in their service; like the Hebrew servant, that loved his master, as also his wife and children, and therefore would not depart from him, see Exodus 21:5.

Christian empires

As such many people also devote their time for their organisation to build up a congregation. Over the years the Watch Tower Society could build up, like the Roman Catholic Church did in previous centuries, a great empire. They managed to buy lots of grounds and buildings. All over the world the organisation did find enthusiast hands who could construct in a few days time a new Kingdom Hall. Often they are able to build a Kingdom Hall in less than three weeks, thanks to hundreds of volunteers who descended on the work site as part of the Jehovah’s Witnesses’ Regional Building Committee. People come from all parts of the country, working with members of the local congregations. It is great to see them at work and to see them so organised. People that have registered with the Regional Building Committee are put into a database according to what department they would work in. Like roofing, concrete, trimming, painting, the kitchen, electrical, plumbing, bricklaying, welding, everything is notated, registered and taken care off by volunteers. to clear such huge projects in such a short time it would cost a lot of money.  Here for those projects it are all the people of the congregation and others who voluntary give money and time to the organisation so that it may grow. and it has grown enormously.

Assets

Strangely enough, the organisation pretends now that it has not enough assets to help out on those in affliction because certain things went wrong at certain of their congregations.

For more than 70 years, the Watch Tower Society has prided itself on its clean legal record, although this has now collapsed in dramatic fashion after a jury at the Alameda County Superior Court found Jehovah’s Witnesses legally responsible for the sexual abuse of Candace Conti, who suffered repeated molestation at the hands of a member of her congregation when only nine years old. Candace Conti, now 26 and living in Stockton, is one of the rare courageous girls who dared to take legal action against the organisation. As in many other cases the congregation and the Watchtower Society concealed the important information from her parents. In showing such shocking negligence, a jury has found that the Fremont elders were acting under the Watch Tower Society’s instructions. The elders failed to report these incidents to the authorities, or warn parents in the congregation.

The Watch Tower Society has therefore been held to account for the abuse suffered by Candace, and has been ordered to pay millions of dollars both in compensation and punitive damages. Compensatory damages of $7 million have been awarded, of which the Society must pay 40%. A further $21 million is due to be paid by the Society in punitive damages. On its official website, the Society has announced it will appeal this decision. It is feared that such an appeal will potentially drag the case out over a considerable period.

Attitude taken

Worse is also the attitude the organisation further takes.

Like in the Roman Catholic Church the than still Cardinal Ratzinger in 2001 issued a secret Vatican edict to Catholic bishops all over the world, instructing them to put the Church’s interests ahead of child safety the Watchtower Society have seem to have like to do the same way, not loving God’s people but loving more the organisation structure and income.

In a remarkable twist, on June 20th Judge Robert D. McGuinnes ruled that the real estate assets of the Watch Tower Society were to be effectively frozen pending the outcome of the Society’s appeal against the judgement. This would mean that, for a considerable period, the Watch Tower Society would be powerless to buy, sell or exchange property without first seeking the permission of the court in Alameda. It is estimated that the total value of the Watch Tower Society’s remaining Brooklyn property portfolio alone is a staggering 1 Billion dollars.

The Watch Tower Society has been ordered to pay millions in damages for their part in the abuse suffered by Candace Conti (pictured) – Photo jwsurvey.org

Now the Society appears to be pleading poverty, indicating that it cannot afford to produce the required $17.3 million dollars by way of surety without using property instead of cash. Amazingly, the Society is prepared to put their Patterson complex (The Watchtower Educational Center) on the line over this judgement, offering it as surety rather than starting the payments. However, this remarkable proposal has been blocked by Candace’s legal team. They understandably want cash to be paid as surety, not shaky property assets during times of economic uncertainty.

The Society has described the payment of $17.3 million in damages along with the premium as something that would cause them “immediate irreparable harm and hardship”.

It is normal that such a huge sum is going to do a certain damage, but trying to get rid of the fine is not an attitude which we would like to see from an organisation who, at first got all the money from its members, and secondly has done grave mistakes. Weekly lots of magazines and other publications or distributed worldwide. For the printed work they receive cash money which is partly also transferred to the headquarters. They should bear the consequences of their acts, like they so often tell others to do, and should bear the fine.

Meltdown

We totally agree with the Jehovah Witness Cedars who writes on his blog Jehovah’s Witnesses Survey:  “Many Witnesses will no doubt be shocked to hear that the organization, said to be enjoying Jehovah’s blessing, is in such a perilous predicament that it is seemingly only $17.3 million dollars away from meltdown! They will be just as amazed to learn that the Society is seeking to effectively put Patterson on the gambling table, to be given to Candace Conti if Watchtower loses its appeal.”

The whole problem is that even ordinary members of the “anointed class” do not have a voice on decisions involving ways to go or legal and doctrinal matters, despite the Governing Body’s claim that it serves as a “representative” and “mouthpiece” to the “Faithful and Discreet Slave” anointed remnant and lots of money is involved in the structure of this worldwide organisation which has become very powerful at the cost of ‘poor’ believers.

We can wonder if it are really Jehovah Witnesses who dare to come out of one’s shell to take care that Jehovah’s name shall not be dragged through the mud by an all-powerful organisation which has become blinded by its worldly and economic power. In case those whistle-blowers are really Jehovah Witnesses, than we wish them lots of courage and appreciate it that they are trying to save all the good work that many Jehovah people have done by the years gone by. In such instance they probably shall have to play a more important  role to safeguard the name of the people who really love God and are spending so much time on the streets to get Jehovah been known all over the world.

The Watchtower Society shall have to show her real face and show the world if it would like to to save face over their doctrinal stance on child abuse, or for their very survival as a global organisation willing to keep the power over many persons worldwide!

Good reason to have cleansed the name of many preachers

In several countries elders have done things which are humanly and legally not right. Not to recognise such faults of those humans or even worse, to punish victims by humiliating them or by putting them out of the organisation is not respectful to those who have given their love and time to Jehovah and to the organisation they sincerely believe to be Jehovah’s Organisation. Many more people should have to see in the handling of these matters that it clearly shows that it is an organisation which may have the luck to receive a lot of God’s blessing, but that it is a human organisation like all the churches here on earth, and as such have humans ruling it who can do also faults like any other human being.

It can happen that people do something wrong. Not one person is without sin. So people should recognise that also in the organisation of the Jehovah Witnesses there can be people who do serious sins. what surprises us is that the people in charge of the organisation prefer covering up certain sins of elders, while the ordinary people are easier expelled and punished in a way that they even cannot have contact with family members any more.

The value and sincerity of the preaching is also pulled down. The action of the Board of Directors makes that outsiders who hear the news in the media are going to shit on the Jehovah people even more. The preaching wich is necessary shall be done a lot of damage, because the faithfulness or fidelity of the followers of the Watchtower and Tract Society shall not be appreciated by the general public.

The world needs a lot of preachers to proclaim the Word of God. The Jehovah Witnesses may have been the most known preachers who dare to tell others the Name of the God of gods. Hopefully those who leave the organisation on matters of the above mistrust shall stay convinced that Jehovah is the Only One God they should go for, and that we have to let the world to get to know His son Jesus and have to look for his return. That they shall stay clear and eager to tell the world the Truth.

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Please do read:

  1. A discussion of theology among friends What’s up with this???
  2. Jehovah’s Witnesses convention kicks off on high note
  3. It takes a village to build a kingdom
    Several years ago, the four congregations of the Jehovah’s Witnesses cq in San Angelo had a dream of building a new Kingdom Hall.
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    The spacious, 8,900-square-foot brick building has matching auditoriums with plenty of room for worshippers. There’s also a library, conference room, literature room, restrooms and other support rooms.
  4. The Girl Who Took On The Watchtower – Candace Conti Speaks Out
  5. The Watchtower Punished: Society loses legal battle over child abuse case
  6. Patterson on the line: Watchtower claims that paying cash bond would cause “immediate irreparable harm and hardship”
  7. “We will decide who is a predator!” – New Watchtower Instructions to Elders on Child Abuse
  8. Manifests for believers #1 Sex abuse setting fire to the powder
    In the 50s and 60s of the previous century many acolytes and young boys became confronted with not such a nice site of human nature and his urge to have physical contact. Growing older and not having been able to cope with the old trauma some got up from their quit seat and started to tell tales out of school.
  9. Manifests for believers #2 Changing celibacy requirement
    For decades, the problem of paedophilia has been badly managed within the church and now that everything comes out of the cesspool this brought the church in discredit and got even more people leaving their church and their faith. Some wonder if you can you blame Catholics for leaving the faith when these types of attitudes run rampant in the church?  The problem becomes bigger when they do take it that “the Church” is bad and that they should not go to any church or return to the Catholic Church because they get the impression that nothing is being done to prevent abuse from happening.  It certainly doesn’t seem that the Catholic church has a screening process that will eliminate paedophiles and child molesters.
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    With all the tribulations and sex scandals many have lost their faith. Many do claim God for what happens in the world, but then they forget that at the beginning of the world-existence God had given men liberty to go his own way.
  10. Manifests for believers #3 Catholic versus Protestant
    The sex-scandals in the Roman Catholic Church did already too much damage. The clergy as well as the believers needed the commotion like they needed a hole in the head. They want to adhere to the Catholic teachings but would prefer to go back to the first century church. They do think they have enough teachings provided in the Holy Bible so that men do not need to bind others to man made teachings or to restrict others by their own teachings.  They just wanted to go back to the teachings which were already part of the church life in early centuries. They also found that the church had to put away certain teachings which where brought into existence for all sorts of reasons, of which some were financial (as protecting the church property).
  11. Roman Catholic Church at war
  12. Breathing to teach
  13. Representatives of the “Slave Class” or the Real “faithful and discreet slave”
  14. Breathing and growing with no heir
    Some may think we aren’t called to just preach. Jesus has given the major task to his followers to go out in the world and to let the Good News be known wherever they go. We also as followers of Christ Jesus should let others know that marvellous Good News.We have marvellous tools which brings us very easily much further than the doorstep.
    Jehovah Witnesses for a long time took it for granted it was the best way to reach people by bothering them at any moment of the day, ringing the bell and talking to them at the doorstep. But it seems that they today, also have found the modern means of the computer and internet. On the internet they now seem to have opened up and present more literature to the general public. Which is nice, because they also have very good literature, which can bring many more people to God.

    But, we should not let them do all the work, and let them get people in their Kingdom hall, while we have other thoughts of which we are sure they are also valuable for the people and leaving them more free. We should get others to know that there are other places of worship where honest God loving people can come together as a congregation.They may offer over there Theocratic Ministry School with a common global curriculum and nest to the weekly services with Watchtower-study they also may offer Pioneer Service School for full-time preachers, and the Kingdom Ministry School for elders and ministerial servants. The Kingdom Hall of the Jehovah Witnesses should be known as the only sort of kingdom hall the world offers good Bible teaching and worship to the One and Only God.

    We should be more conscious that we also have a lot to offer to the unbelievers and those looking for the Truth. We Can offer the Truth, but than we may not stay in our little cocoon of our armchair at home. We should get off our ass and do something.

    It is more than high time that more people would come out of their house and take up the task Jesus has given them.

  15. Which back voters in the US wants to see
  16. Mormons, just an other faith

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  • Cult or True Religion (wordsonsergebenhayon.wordpress.com)
    “…if you believe in it, it is a religion or perhaps ‘the’ religion; and if you do not care one way or another about it, it is a sect; but if you fear and hate it, it is a cult.” Leo Pfeffer.
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    Call someone a name and you don’t have to refute their argument – it makes it easy to toss it aside as the workings of a potentially crazed mind rather than something that may be of value, truth and substance.Why are there two separate words in the English language – cult and religion – that are understood by most to refer to two separate things. Calling new religions ‘cults’ is a very clever scare tactic used by the older religions in order to protect their market share. Christianity sees other religions that do not follow its version of doctrine as cults… so that makes all Buddhists, Hindus, Jews, followers of Islam plus all other religions, and thus a very large proportion of the population, cult members on those grounds.
  • Billy Graham: Mormonism No Cult (orthodoxyandheterodoxy.org)
    it seems that Mormonism is no longer a “cult”
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    now even the walking-Evangelical-saint Billy Graham has sacrificed doctrine for politics, that his desire for a Republican in the White House has transcended his commitment to the distinctives of his Southern Baptist religious faith.
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    The Graham definition above—”any group which teaches doctrines or beliefs that deviate from the biblical message of the Christian faith”—is similarly problematic. How would this definition include Jehovah’s Witnesses but not Roman Catholics? How would it include Unitarian Universalists but not Mormons? Isn’t it true that all of these groups (and many more) would deviate from most Evangelicals’ understanding of “the biblical message of the Christian faith”?
  • Defining Christianity (reneland.wordpress.com)
    I recently had a very good friend of mine who is Catholic and went to a Catholic school until the 9th grade say to me that she wasn’t a Christian, she was a Catholic. She said that the nuns told her she wasn’t Christian.
  • Jehovah’s Witnesses (calltoprayerministries.wordpress.com) {the writer of this article does not seem to see what it really means to be a ‘Christian’ and wants to take hold only on a sort-sighted vision.}
    Jehovah’s Witnesses come up in conversation more times than one might think. I guess that it’s because there are many people who know JW’s and there don’t seem to be many obvious differences between their faith and ours. Many JW’s are nice people, talk about Jesus, share their faith, and care about their families… just like Christians. So what are the differences? Are they just a different kind of Christian?
  • ‘Mormonism’ Taken off Site’s Cult List (abcnews.go.com)
    The prominent Christian evangelist Billy Graham has taken public steps to embrace Mitt Romney for president this week, removing Romney’s Mormon religion from a list of cults on his website and taking out an advertisement that appears to urge people to vote for Romney.
  • Billy Graham Offers To Help Mormon Mitt Romney And Then Removes Section From Website Calling Mormonism A Cult! (soulrefuge.org)
    The scriptures make it very clear that true believers in Jesus Christ should not be “yoked” together with unbelievers. Why would any true Christian want to help and support a Mormon who teaches that Jesus Christ is the spirit brother of Lucifer?
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  • Billy Graham Risks His “Legacy” By Scrubbing His Website Of Mormonism Cult Reference, But He Also Changed His Views About The Cult Of Rome Over 50 Years Ago (soulrefuge.org)
  • Grahams tighten Romney ties (newsobserver.com)
  • Mormons off Graham’s ‘cult’ list (upi.com)

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