Help --Pre-JW Faithful and Discreet Slave??

by lynnmelo 28 Replies latest jw friends

  • lynnmelo

    Hi, folks. For those who may not remember my previous posts, I'm someone who has been studying with the JW's for about two years but didn't commit (i.e., get baptized) because, as I thought then, I was just too selfish and cowardly to join up with the JW's. That's before I found this site and watched the Dateline video on the child molestation problem. Now, I realize that the JW's probably aren't God's chosen organization and the that Governing Body certainly isn't the Faithful and Discreet slave. However, I'm still intending on going to the Sunday meetings because I just don't know another church to attend (I have major disagreements with most other organized religions as well), and I still believe that the JW's are right about some things (e.g., no Hellfire, paradise earth, etc.).

    I thought that I might just be able to blend into the background of the congregation once my book study had ended, which it finally did last week when I finished the last book. Not so, though. My book study conductor asked me to meet with her one more time to "review" my concerns. I won't go into detail here, but it wasn't a great meeting. It's almost as if she took it very personally that I wasn't buying into some of the "proofs" about the existence of the F&DS (I didn't let on that I'd watched the Dateline video & some other stuff I found here because I didn't want to see her get that self-righteous, patronizing look that says, "See what apostate sites can do). A couple of times, she would say something about it being up to me to accept it and then say, "But I fear for you." In retrospect, that really ticks me off.

    Anyway, I digress. My original purpose in posting is to ask whether anyone here has any idea of the groups that the JW's sometimes point to as the "faithful and discreet slave" between the time the church turned apostate and the time when the JW's were formed. That's a question that I'd previously asked my book study conductor and that had pretty much stumped her. At this last meeting, though, she came prepared. She told me she'd spoken to an elder, and he'd told her something about a group called the Lallerites(not sure I have that right)??? I can't remember the name she gave me, but even she seemed uncomfortable with it (almost like she really didn't believe it). Does anyone have any idea what she was referring to? If so, does it have any validity?

    I could ask her, I suppose, but I really don't want to meet with her again. She asked me if we could meet just once more but this time with an Elder. I agreed at the time, but I've changed my mind now. I get the feeling that the only purpose of this next meeting is for them to come armed and try to get me to admit that they're right on certain points so that they can self-righteously claim to have done "everything they can" for me and shake their head because I just don't get it.


  • NiecyMe

    This is sad. I mean you are sad. It sounds like you might think that you might have your own ideas about what JW's are doing with you. Don't you have the self confidence in yourself to just say NO? Why agree to meeting with them if you don't want to? The problem is not is you. You know that thier mind probing is getting to you and you are allowing it to continue. Why hide the way that you feel about them? Are you afraid? Because if you are..they have got you were they want you and know they are bringing in the big guns (elders). Your lucky that they don't bring the overseer with them. There is nothing to be afraid of...take a break and just educate yourself. Read the Bible...NOT thiers. A bible that hasn't been change to much...(King James or NIV). Read several at the sametime I did. The answers are right in front of you. AND THEN TELL THEM TO GET LOST!! You can do this. Let me know how it went. Sorry about being so hard on you.

  • Nathan Natas
    Nathan Natas

    Their goal is to "close the sale."

    That happens when you get baptized and submit to the authority of thier "princes" (elders).

    I think that during Pastor Rusell's time they had a little workup on who was the "faithful slave" at various points in history, but I think the Dubs will tell you that your concern is not important because:

    A. You aren't living then, you're living now

    B. NOW is the "time of the end" according to them. It's just around the corner. Can't you smell it? Hear it?

    They are right about A. but wrong about B.

    I can understand that you find some of their messag appealing. That's what advertising is all about.

    I'm an atheist, and I will also tell you that there's no hell. Join me instead! Atheists have more fun, and we don't make you go door-to-door.

    As a humanistic atheist i will tell you this: if earth ever does become a paradise, it will be because of the thinking and work of human beings like yourself, not because of the intervention of some invisible son-of-a-skydaddy and his 144,000 rock-n-rollers.

    PLEASE act in your own self-interest and tell the Dubs to take a hike. You can invite them to come back every year until THEY die to tell you how much closer Armageddon is.

    Be brave; be bold. If there was a hell, you could tell them to go there.

  • Forscher

    Many of the groups that the WTBTS mentions are either not around anymore, or they've changed in way that they are quite different now. Groups that are around today that share many beliefs in common with the JWs but may not be as controlling would be the Universalists, The Christadelphians, and possibly the Second adventists (Russell was very invovled with the Second Adventists until he broke with Barbour and was guided very much by George Storrs, a Secon Adventist.).
    The Bible Students, whom the WTBTS still calls the "Evil Slave", are still very much around. They vary form the Laymens Home Missionary movement and the DAWN, who pretty much reject much of Russell's teachings, to much more conservative types. Just Google "Bible Students" and you will find quite a few sites for them. The Associated Bible Students appear to be about as close to the middle of the road among those groups. If you live in the Midwest U.S., you might not be all that far from one of them if that potential solution appeals to you. You might want to look around at which is a forum hosted by an Associated Bible Students Ministry. That way you can see if that is along the lines you are thinking. They also have a site who's articles are now linked on that forum.
    I wish you the best in your quest to find an acceptable alternative to the Borg.


  • garybuss

    If you read Thy Kingdom Come, Volume 3 of Studies In The Scriptures by Charles Russell, he gives the line of truth to the Second Advent Christian movement, then William Miller, then the Catholic Church.

    Read and enjoy at:

  • lynnmelo

    NiecyMe, you wrote,

    This is sad. I mean you are sad. It sounds like you might think that you might have your own ideas about what JW's are doing with you. Don't you have the self confidence in yourself to just say NO?

    Evidently you misunderstood me. I am saying no, just not in the manner that you would. Her status as a devout JW nonwithstanding, my book study conductor has spent two years studying with me, and I wanted to give her the opportunity (out of politeness) to make any final points, even though I have no intention of joining. However, as I mentioned in my post, I don't intend to meet with her and the Elder. As I also said, I do believe in some of the things they believe.

    Also, you wrote,

    take a break and just educate yourself

    What do you think I've been doing? How do you think I ended up here?

    Jeez, and you didn't even address my question!

  • TD

    Two of the pre-JW groups the JW's tentatively point to are the Lollards, and the Waldenses (cf. Watchtower 8/1/81 pp.12-15) However the comparison is not a good one, because just about the only thing these groups share with the JW's is that they too were small break-away non-conformist groups.

    The Lollards were followers of John Wycliff in the late 14th and early 15th centuries. Lollardry proposed belief in the sufficiency of Scripture as an alternative to the authority of the Church, they believed that the clergy should hold no property and they rejected the doctrine of transubstantiation. The Lollards were fiercly anticlerical, they recognized no centralized authority and they stressed individual responsibility on matters of faith. Individuals were to reach their own conclusions on what the Scriptures meant. This is not only incompatible with JW belief today, it is incompatible with the Faithful and Discreet Slave doctrine itself, which is the only reason the name "Lollard" comes up with JW's at all.

    The Waldenses were another break-away group originating in France in the 12th century. They rejected the ostentacious wealth of the church and espoused lives of poverty and celibacy. Like the Lollards, about the only thing that JW's today can identify with is their defiance of the Catholic church and their desire to get the Bible into the hands of the common man. They were orthodox in many areas that are incompatible with JW belief today. (e.g. The Trinity)

  • lynnmelo

    Thank you, TD!! That's exactly the information for which I was looking

  • jgnat

    Good job, TD! Now I don't have to go look it up. The breakoff groups that the JW's claim to be inheritors of had very little in common, doctrinally, with the JW's. As for finding a compatible church, lynnmelo, why not try the Bible Students? They have a lot of doctrinal similarities without the heavy-handed recruiting techniques.

    Nathan Natas is absolutely right. Your study leader is going to get more forceful at this point, as she probably assumed she could mark you down as a baptism at the next convention. Good luck turning her off.

  • rebel8

    Everyone must choose for themselves their own path. I think your idea that you could blend into the background and attend Sunday meetings is based upon what normal churches are like. Most members in normal churches (and even in self help groups such as AA), use the approach of "take what you can and leave the rest"--meaning they do not enter with the idea they are going to agree with and benefit from every single thing. That is a balanced approach of joining any group. Humans are diverse and there is no way you are going to find a group of normal/healthy people who agree on every single thing.

    The problem with JWs is they do not fit into that description. It is very difficult to blend into the background, as they are very forward about getting into your business and using Inquisition-like methods to figure out where you stand with things. When you don't agree, watch out. (Read Crisis of Conscience to learn about the witch hunt methods.) It is a characteristic of high control groups to disallow divergent beliefs and opinions. Look what has already happened to you when you disagreed--you were given a thinly veiled death threat! ("I fear for you.")

    I've heard that Unitarian groups are interesting. From what I understand, their meetings are in a format where different ideas are presented, not as the one and only truth, but as possibilties.

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