At the 128th annual meeting of the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society of Pennsylvania, on October 6 th 2012 . During this meeting “food at the proper time” was given and the most important, was given during a symposium of six talks by members of the Governing Body—Brothers Jackson, Lösch, Pierce, Herd, Lett, and Splane— which analyzed and discussed the meaning of Jesus’ words recorded at
Matthew 24:45-47. 45 “Who really is the faithful and discreet slave whom his master appointed over his domestics, to give them their food at the proper time? 46 Happy is that slave if his master on arriving finds him doing so. 47 Truly I say to YOU, He will appoint him over all his belongings. .-
( Full text of the report from : http://www.jw.org/en/news/events-activities/annual-meeting-report-2012/)
With this new understanding or ‘ adjustement in understanding’ many questions come to those …thousands and thousands with inquisitive minds.
With the help of t some material scattered on the web and on this board I have tried to make an analytical summary of the major points together with quotes of previous and recent Society’s teaching.
Here we go:
1***Was a slave class present between the 1st century and the 20th century?
**w22 3/1 pp. 72-73 Who Is Wise? ***
The indisputable facts, therefore, show that the "time of the end" began in 1799; that the Lord’s second presence began in 1874; that the harvest followed thereafter and greater light has come upon the Word of God. In this connection, then, let us note the words of Jesus: "Who then is a faithful and wise servant, whom his lord hath made ruler over his household, to give them meat in due season? Blessed is that servant, whom his lord when he cometh shall find so doing." (Matthew 24: 45, 46) It must be conceded, then, that at the end ot the world, at the "time of the end", during the presence of the Lord, during the harvest, he would have in the earth a servant who would be faithful and wise. The physical facts show that Brother Russell met every one of these requirements. This prophetic utterance, then, has been fulfilled. Therefore fulfilled prophecy, or physical facts, and the circumstantial evidence are conclusive proofs that Brother Russell filled the office of that faithful and wise servant."
***w92 12/1 pp. 13-14 Bring All the Tenth Parts Into the Storehouse” ***
7Who, then, was the faithful and discreet slave? In the first century, it began with the small group that responded to the witness work of John the Baptizer and of Jesus, the messenger of the covenant.
In our century, it was the few thousandswho responded to the preparatory work of the Bible Students during the years leading up to 1914.
The Watchtower May 15, 1995, p. 16, par. 2
This slave could not be just one individual because he was to provide spiritual food from when the Christian congregation began at Pentecost until the Master, Jesus Christ, came to make an accounting. The facts indicate that this faithful and discreet slave class comprises all anointed Christians as a group on earth at any given time.
The Watchtower August 1 st , 2000, p. 6, par. 3
As Head of his congregation, not only did Jesus keep a watchful eye on his anointed footstep followers on earth but, since the outpouring of the holy spirit at Pentecost 33 C.E.,he has also used them as a channel of truth, as a "faithful and discreet slave." (Matthew 24:45-47; Acts 2:1-36)
4 “The faithful and discreet slave” cannot be one person. Why not? Because the slave began serving spiritual food back in the first century, and according to Jesus, the slave would still be doing so when the Master arrived in 1914. That would represent some 1,900 years of faithful service for one individual. Not even Methuselah lived that long!—Genesis 5:27.
5 Well, might the term “faithful and discreet slave” apply in a general sense to each individual Christian? It is true that all Christians must be faithful and discreet; however, Jesus clearly had something more in mind when he spoke of “the faithful and discreet slave.” How do we know that? Because he said that the “master on arriving” would appoint the slave “over all his belongings.” How could each individual Christian be placed over everything—over “all” of the Lord’s belongings? Impossible!
6 The only reasonable conclusion, then, is that Jesus was referring to a group of Christians as “the faithful and discreet slave.
Although they were anointed by holy spirit, the apostles and other first-century Christians were not “the faithful and discreet slave” prophesied by Jesus.
It is reasonable to conclude, then, that Jesus appointed “the faithful and discreet slave” over “his domestics” during his presence, “the conclusion of the system of things.”
2***Who then constitute the “the faithful and discreet slave”?
12 A second example of deep things that have been revealed to us concerns God’s purpose to select 144,000 from among mankind. (Revelation 14:1, 4) We accept the teaching that all of the anointed onesliving on earth at any given time constitute“the faithful and discreet slave” that Jesus said would provide timely “food” for his domestics. (Matthew 24:45)
The apostle Peter gave the answer when he told the congregation of anointed Christians: “You are . . . ‘a holy nation, a people for special possession.’” (1 Peter 1:4; 2:9) That spiritual nation, “the Israel of God,” became Jehovah’s new slave. (Galatians 6:16) Just as all members of ancient Israel formed one “servant,” so also all anointed Christians on earth at any one time form one “faithful and discreet slave.” What a privilege it is for us to receive “food” through God’s slave!
The evidence points to the following conclusion: “The faithful and discreet slave” was appointed over Jesus’ domestics in 1919. That slave is the small, composite group of anointed brothers serving at world headquarters during Christ’s presence who are directly involved in preparing and dispensing spiritual food. When this group work together as the Governing Body, they act as “the faithful and discreet slave.”
NB *** How can anyone trust a small group of men, within a religious organization - to correctly interpret the Bible – for millions and millions of people - and yet the same small group cannot even be sure of their own identity?
Can we really imagine for a moment “ God's channel of communication” that is not able…sorry .. that takes almost 100 years to realize who is part of “God’s channel of communication. Do we have to believe that it took so long for Jehovah God to inform them on this matter?
2***Was the slave active in 1914?,
16 What about today ? When Jesus’ presence began in 1914, did he find a group of anointed Christians who were faithfully dispensing food at the proper time?He certainly did. This group could be clearly identified because of the fine fruitage that it was producing. (Matthew 7:20) History since then has proved this identification to be correct.
17 At the time of Jesus’ arrival, some 5,000 domestics were busy spreading Bible truth. The workers were few, but the slave used a number of ingenious methods to spread the good news. (Matthew 9:38) For example, arrangements were made for sermons on Bible topics to be published in up to 2,000 newspapers. In this way, the truth of God’s Word reached tens of thousands of readers at once. In addition, an eight-hour program combining color slides and motion pictures was prepared. Thanks to this innovative presentation, the Bible’s message, from the beginning of Creation to the end of the Thousand Year Reign of Christ, was conveyed to audiences totaling over nine million on three continents. Printed literature was another avenue that was used. In 1914, for example, some 50,000 copies of this journal were published.
18 Yes, when the Master arrived, he found his faithful slave conscientiously feeding the domestics as well as preaching the good news. Greater responsibilities now awaited that slave. Jesus said: “Truly I say to you, He will appoint him over all his belongings.” (Matthew 24:47) Jesus did this in 1919, after the slave had passed through a period of testing. Why, though, did “the faithful and discreet slave” receive greater responsibilities? Because the Master had received an increase in his belongings. Jesus was given the kingship in 1914.
The evidence points to the following conclusion: “The faithful and discreet slave” was appointed over Jesus’ domestics in 1919. That slave is the small, composite group of anointed brothers serving at world headquarters during Christ’s presence who are directly involved in preparing and dispensing spiritual food. When this group work together as the Governing Body , they act as “the faithful and discreet slave.”
3***Who ist the "evil slave" (Mat 24:48-51)?
2 Jesus spoke of the evil slave immediately after discussing “the faithful and discreet slave.” He said: “If ever that evil slave should say in his heart, ‘My master is delaying,’ and should start to beat his fellow slaves and should eat and drink with the confirmed drunkards, the master of that slave will come on a day that he does not expect and in an hour that he does not know, and will punish him with the greatest severity and will assign him his part with the hypocrites. There is where his weeping and the gnashing of his teeth will be.” (Matthew 24:48-51) The expression “that evil slave” draws our attention to Jesus’ preceding words about the faithful and discreet slave. Yes, the “evil slave” came from the ranks of the faithful slave. How?
- not mentioned yet -
4***Will the parables of the virgins and the slave with the talents apply to the “governing body”?
21 Thus, although these two parables shed light on events in 1919 or thereabouts, they apply in principle to all true Christians throughout the last days. In this way, while the exhortation that Jesus gave at the end of the parable of the ten virgins applies in the first place to anointed Christians before 1919, in principle it still applies to every Christian. May all of us, then, take to heart Jesus’ words: “Keep on the watch, therefore, because you know neither the day nor the hour.”—Matthew 25:13.
- not considered yet -
5***Who are the “ domestics”?
Who, though, are the “domestics,” who receive spiritual nourishment from the slave? In the first century C.E ., every Christian cherished the heavenly hope. Consequently, the domestics were also anointed Christians, viewed, not as a group, but as individuals. All, including those who held responsible positions in the congregation, needed spiritual food from the slave.—1 Corinthians 12:12, 19-27; Hebrews 5:11-13; 2 Peter 3:15, 16.
Jesus said that “his domestics” would receive “food at the proper time.” All genuine followers of Jesus are fed by “the faithful and discreet slave.” Therefore, all of Christ’s disciples—both individual anointed Christians and members of the “other sheep”—are “his domestics.”—John 10:16.
"What does all of this really mean? The great crowd and the anointed are all domestics. We are all domestics . And brothers, we love this teaching - we love this idea."
(by brother David Splane - a GB member- )
6***What are the belongings over which the newly crowned Master appoints his “faithful slave” ?
*** w04 3/1 p. 12 par. 19 A “Slave” Who Is Both Faithful and Discreet ***
19 What are the belongings over which the newly crowned Master appointed his faithful slave? All the spiritual things that belong to Him here on earth.
Jesus said: “All authority has been given me in heaven and on the earth.” (Matthew 28:18) Jesus’ “belongings” thus include more than just his earthly interests. They include the Messianic Kingdom.—Philippians 2:9-11.
Consequently, Jesus will reward “the faithful and discreet slave” by resurrecting the individual members of that group to heavenly life and by giving them royal authority over all Christ’s belongings in heaven and on earth. This is the same reward promised to all faithful anointed Christians.—Luke 22:28-30; Revelation 20:6.
In conclusion , according to this latest “ adjustement in understanding” it is established that Jesus Christ, the Master returned in the year 1914 and appointed a “faithful and discreet slave class “ .
(Matthew 24:45-51)45 “Who really is the faithful and discreet slave whom his master appointed over his domestics, to give them their food at the proper time? 46 Happy is that slave if his master on arriving finds him doing so. 47 Truly I say to YOU, He will appoint him over all his belongings
Since the the appointment of “the faithful and discreet slave “ was made after 5 years were elapsed, i.e. in the year 1919, there are more questions without an answer:
***Was the Master gone again?
***How can that be if he returned invisibly and appoints a slave?
***Did he invisibly leave and then return invisibly again to appoint the FDS?
***Did the Master come back just to place the slave in authority?
***How can a true Christian be sure of the events?
***ho witnessed the event?
**How can anyone prove invisible events?
(NB Please keep in mind that Brother Joseph Rutherford, taught that “god’s people “ realized the event of Jesus Christ’s inspection in the year 1922)
I do hope that the material ll be useful to someone.
(P.S. Two more points :
In the official report no mention of Brother Charles Taze Russell – the last time he was mentioned in the publications was in the year 2009; Second point, no mention in the official report of the latest “Governing Body” member Mark Sanderson.