The WTS teaches a form of Apostolic Succession, although strangely enough denying such. In order to prove the "always existed" theory they have engaged in interesting revisionism. The WTS has put forth that groups such as the Waldenses and the Lollards were part of JW history.
"It is quite evident that the early Waldenses were faithful Witnesses of Jehovah."
Theocratic Aid to Kingdom Publishers pg. 307.
(ALSO SEE WT 8/1/80 PGS24-28, WT 8/1/81 PG. 15)
The WTS has been unable to show any real "unbroken chain" that links them to anything before C. T. Russell. This somewhat blatant fact has caused many good hearted JWs to question the entire "always existed" theory. The various unconnected groups (Waldenses, Lollards, and Anabaptists) that the WTS has used to prove the "always existed" theory, cannot substantiate the claim that the FDS was "a close-knit body" that "one generation of the slave' class fed the succeeding generation" WT 1/15/75 pgs. 46,47
The Watchtower January 15, 1975 states:
| ||"Apparently one generation of the "slave" class fed the succeeding generation thereof, as well as continuing to feed themselves. We see, then that Jesus Christ himself called attention to this method of feeding his people not as isolated, independent individuals, but as a close-knit body of Christians having real love and care for one another."|