Question About Matthew 13:24

by lynnmelo 17 Replies latest jw friends

  • lynnmelo

    As some of you may know (from my previous posts), I'm studying with the JW's (& have been for 2 years) but have decided not to be baptized after reading some of the information and links from this site. However, I am supposed to be having one last book study to finish the Worship the One True God book. When I do this study, I'm considering being upfront with my Bible study conductor, telling her some of my reasons for deciding not to become a JW. In my explanation, I basically want to tell her that I'll never be able to accept that the GB of the Watchtower is the "faithful and discreet slave" of the bible. To me, that one doctrine is the glue that holds the entire organization together, so if I just deal with that, it will cover all other things. However, in the past when we've discussed this issue, I brought up the following point, which I've seen discussed on this board as well: Where was the faithful and discreet slave and God's "visible organization" during all the years before the Watchtower? She has answered by bringing up Matthew 13:24, saying that this was the time during which the wheat and the weeds were growing.

    Any thoughts on her response and/or suggestions on what I might say to her?

    Thanks in advance.

  • Soledad

    Gotta love those JW's

    You tell her that you don't believe that the GB is the faithful and discreet slave, she goes and quotes a scripture interpreted by that same FDS to prove that they are who they say they are!

    It's all hogwash. Debating sciptures with a JW is a waste of time. They think that the know the whole bible inside and out and that theirs is the only correct interpretation. Bring up instead the recent child molestation scandals.

  • Narkissos

    The parable is explained in vs. 36ff:

    Then he left the crowds and went into the house. And his disciples approached him, saying, "Explain to us the parable of the weeds of the field." He answered, "The one who sows the good seed is the Son of Man; the field is the world, and the good seed are the children of the kingdom; the weeds are the children of the evil one, and the enemy who sowed them is the devil; the harvest is the end of the age, and the reapers are angels. Just as the weeds are collected and burned up with fire, so will it be at the end of the age. The Son of Man will send his angels, and they will collect out of his kingdom all causes of sin and all evildoers, and they will throw them into the furnace of fire, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. Then the righteous will shine like the sun in the kingdom of their Father. Let anyone with ears listen!

    According to this interpretation, nobody should attempt to separate the good seed from the weeds before the angels do so at the end of the age. Claiming that the separation occurred while the "weeds" are not yet "in the furnace of fire" cannot be supported by the text imo.

  • AuldSoul


    You picked a cherished doctrine to debate. It is very easy to win the debate, however. I encourage you not to argue over interpretation of illustrations, you will be in for a maddening evening. It is much easier to USE her interpretations to teach her. Don't let her go the Wheat and Weeds route, tell her that you have some scriptures to discuss, but first you want to make sure you correctly understand their teachings.

    Have pen and paper ready for the study.

    (1) Tell her your understanding of the doctrine is that the Governing Body feeds everyone, including the Faithful and Discreet Slave class, and that the Faithful and Discreet Slave class sometimes suggests doctrinal things for the Governing Body to think about. Write it down. Or, even better, ask her to write it. Ask her if that is correct. (cheat code: it is )

    (2) Ask her (just to make sure she knows, ) whether the remaining anointed represent the Faithful and Discreet Slave class, as she understands it. Have her write it down.

    (3) Ask her what authority the Faithful and Discreet Slave has over anything. Wait for her response, and have her write it.

    (4) Ask her why the Governing Body teaches the anointed, too. Have her write the answer.

    Read Matthew 24:45-47 and ask, "If the Faithful and Discreet Slave doesn't have authority OVER the Governing Body, is the Governing Body part of Christ's belongings?" Give her a minute to hem and haw (there is no answer in their teachings), then move on to the coup de grâce...

    Read 1 John 2:26-29 and ask, "Why does the Governing Body need to teach the anointed...if...they're really anointed?" Get her to look at what she wrote about that.

    Basically, the only reason a Witness will accept for rejecting their teachings is on Scriptural grounds. Please let me know how it goes.


  • lynnmelo

    Narkissos , you make an excellent point.

    Auldsoul, your point is good as well, but I think my book study conductor will simply do what she always does and compare Paul, Peter, etc. (i.e., the early leaders of the church) to the modern-day GB and say that they taught the early congregations (which witnesses believe were ALL annointed ---btw, I've never asked how they know this).

  • Goldminer

    I love this FDS doctrine.Here's a religion who took a parable (MT 24:45-47),turned it into a prophecy,applied it only to themselves and claimed they were the Central Authority or Governing Body based entirely on this one parable! OK

    Here's a few articles you might want to look at concerning the FDS

    wt 60 7/15 p.436-37-1900 yrs old FDS

    wt 60 7/15 p.435 par.14 and wt83 9/15 p.19-20 par 19-fed the domestics from 33 ce onward

    wt 75 1/15 p.46-47-came into existence in 33 CE,-one generation of the slave class fed the succeeding generation

    wt 81 3/1 p.24- feeding its members for 19 centuries

    According to WT teaching the FDS has been in existence for over 1900 years.Hard to believe.even elders have a hard time when you ask them where the FDS was in 457 CE or 894 CE or 1459 CE.They like to point to some small,not well known religious group that existed at some time and say they could have been the FDS.Well,the WT says one generation feeding the next,that means no gaps,the FDS would have always been visible somewhere.

    Do some research on it and you can really stumble her on it,maybe even get her to start to really thinking about its validity.Ask her also,since history is not quiet on religious developments,why is it there is no historical records of any organization or entity that represented the FDS during those roughly 1900 years.


  • FreeWilly

    Great advice from Auldsoul!
    If she insists on the "wheat and the weeds" then SAY (don't ask)

    1) Russell did not learn his beliefs from a preexisting Faithful slave, he learned them from the Adventists who you say are false, so the idea that there was always an organization is just not true.

    2) If there was wheat along with weeds, then you would be able to tell me who the wheat part of that illustration was. We have thousands of books and writings from the past 1900 years of Christian history, and you cannot point to a single person group or organization who held beliefs anything like what the Society teaches. "Where's the wheat !?"

    3) Regading the annointed remnant, If they were the Faithful Slave who received insight from Jesus and Jehovah, then they would have know about the "New Light" regarding the revised understanding of "This Generation" in Mathew 24. Instead, the had to read about it in the Watchtower like everyone else.

    Hint: If you make statements instead of asking questions, he/she must provide proof of their innaccuracy. If you ASK, then you are essentially open to any cockamamie answer they blurt out. SAY what you learned to be true, don't ASK.

  • stillAwitness

    Good Luck in your debate! Let us know how it goes.

    It is quite interesting how JW will defend their teachings with their own publications that back them up. I always think of it like this:

    Buying a new car. Am I gonna read Honda Magazine to research the good and bad in buying a Honda? Yeah right! Of course there gonna tell me nothin but the good and none of the bad-accident reports, etc. One would go to a Consumer Reports magazine for unbiased information.

    Of course, doing research about JW teachings involves the same thing. Think of this site and others as your trusty Consumer Report. No yearly subsciption needed.


    One thing you have to remember is that JWs are cut and paste professionals. That same cut and paste technique can also be used in your favor but you have to stick to your guns. This is my suggestion. Have your study conductor open to Matt. 24:45-47 and then refer to verse 48 preferrably using another translation which would say wordings like (if that servant is evil) or (if that slave is evil) which means the slave of Matt 24:45-47 is the same slave as verse 48 and all you see is a comparison of the differences between the conduct of a good servant or slave and a bad servant or slave. Tell them that is all you see and nothing more. Then refer Matt. 18:23-35 and say this is another story of Jesus about a bad slave forgiven his huge debt by his master who goes out and does damage to or beats his fellow slave over a small debt. It too is just a story comparing a good and bad slave. Another good reference is to when Jesus washed the feet of his followers and his words in John 13:15-17 that discribe how the conduct of the good slave would be like that of the master. Remember, just make them read it for what it says without their little formulas. Remember, the JWs are led by an unfaithful and indiscreet slave that haven't made an accurate prediction in over 125 years. So what gives them the right to say this one little verse taken out of context, Matt.13:24 can be used as a greater understanding of Matt.24:45-47. That's just as bad as the Mormons and the 2 sticks of Joseph.

  • blindersoff

    All good comments. I agree as to the importance and lack of support for this doctrine. I think it is a great idea to hammer on it & don't be easily put off.

    My 2 cents:

    My comments in blue)

    *** it-1 p. 805 Faithful and Discreet Slave ***(Insight book)

    When answering the apostles’ question concerning his future presence and the conclusion of the existing system of things, Jesus Christ included a parable, or illustration, dealing with a “faithful and discreet slave” and an “evil slave.

    Does a parable or illustration require a fulfillment?

    Even if it does, what about the timing?

    *** w87 8/1 p. 16 Christ’s Active Leadership Today ***

    5 The modern history of God’s people shows that this time of accounting came in 1918-19

    They were collectively found to be the “slave

    Note this application of Jesus' 'coming':

    *** w97 3/1 p. 13 Are You Ready for Jehovah’s Day? ***

    On this account you too prove yourselves ready, because at an hour that you do not think to be it, the Son of man is coming.” (Matthew 24:40-44;-----) Not knowing the exact time of Jesus’ coming to execute God’s vengeance (NOT 1914) tends to keep us vigilant and gives us daily opportunity to prove that we serve Jehovah with unselfish motives.

    Then the context of the illustration:

    (Matthew 24:36-47) 36 “Concerning that day and hour (Jesus’ coming to execute God’s vengeance) nobody knows, ------------------ 42 Keep on the watch, therefore, because YOU do not know on what day YOUR Lord is coming.(Jesus’ coming to execute God’s vengeance) ----------------------- 44 On this account YOU too prove yourselves ready, because at an hour that YOU do not think to be it, the Son of man is coming. (Jesus’ coming to execute God’s vengeance) 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 (same as coming) finds him doing so. 47 Truly I say to YOU, He will appoint him over all his belongings.

    How can verse 46 step out of the context & apply to 1914 / 1919? Why would his 'arrival' in vs 46 be at a different time than his 'coming' in the previous verses? So the supposed appointment does not come until after his arrival/coming. At this time he separates the sheep & goats as well as the wheat & weeds.


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