Theocratic Warfare

by Tigerman 22 Replies latest jw friends

  • FairMind


    Here's a link to a website that discusses a legal case where someone was initially convicted of perjury for not telling the whole truth. I copied the portion of the docuement into this post that show the initial perjury conviction.

    So, is the actuary who tells the truth and nothing but the truth, but who fails to tell the whole truth, guilty of perjury? 18 U.S.C. 1621 provides:

    "Whoever, having taken an oath before a competent tribunal, officer, or person, in any case in which a law of the United States authorizes an oath to be administered, that he will testify, declare, depose, or certify truly, or that any written testimony, declaration, deposition, or certificate by him subscribed, is true, willfully and contrary to such oath states or subscribes any material matter which he does not believe to be true, is guilty of perjury, and shall, except as otherwise expressly provided by law, be fined not more than $2,000 or imprisoned not more than five years, or both."

    In 1973 the Supreme Court issued its decision in Bronston v. U.S., 409 U.S. 352, which revolved substantially around the following colloquy:

    Q: Do you have any bank accounts in Swiss banks, Mr. Bronston?

    A: No, sir.

    Q: Have you ever?

    A: The company had an account there for about six months, in Zurich.

    Both of the answers were true, however Mr. Bronston had previously had a Swissbank account for a period of about five years. While the second answer was literally true, the District Court found Bronston guilty of perjury. The Court of Appealsupheld the conviction holding that "[f]or the purposes of 18 U.S.C. 1621, an answer containing half of the truth which also constitutes a lie by negative implication, whenthe answer is intentionally given in place of the responsive answer called for by aproper question, is perjury."

  • DaCheech

    We are "Christian Jehova Witless"

  • carla

    Before I knew much of what I know now, but still more than your average householder, I used to get really pissed off that they would not admit right off the bat they were jw's. The Mormons don't seem to have a problem, evangelical Lutheran's, and even salesmen will readily admit who they are representing. If they are so proud of being the 'only ones' using jihivihis name then they should be upfront about it. I know other people who get annoyed at this as well. Now they have another thing to be annoyed at- few know that they have to fill out the time slips and feel they are being used only to fill time, others get quite annoyed that everything they say on their own property with someone knocking on their door also write down responses and keep records on addresses. Those people are very concerned with their privacy and privacy rights. I love to let the society hang themselves with their own literature and doctrines of men.

  • carla

    I forgot to add, they certainly do encourage jw's to outright lie if it suits their purposes. They have encourage my husband to lie and justify it in their usual insane ways. I know of other people who have similar stories when a spouse is 'opposed'.

  • blondie

    Lying under oath in court is not allowed to JWs under the "theocratic warfare" clause. But they can refuse to answer. In the US that is allowed, not to answer--5th amendment of the Bill of Rights.


    w54 10/1 pp. 597-598 Christians Live the Truth ***

    Even in court under oath circumstances arose in totalitarian countries, such as under Hitler’s rule, where the brothers were faced with two evil alternative courses. One course was to tell everything one knew and incriminate and expose brothers to persecution and punishment and also bring sentence upon oneself. The other course was to refuse to answer questions while on the witness stand and be held for contempt of court. In similar circumstances today it is up to the individual to choose whether he wants to answer or not. Refusal means punishment. He can choose to stay silent and go to prison or speak and multiply his punishment or place his brothers in danger. He has no choice on lying but he does on refusing to answer, remembering that he must pay the penalty that Caesar imposes, which may be years of imprisonment. A Christian will not lie under oath, and therefore those in Nazi Germany had to suffer the consequences of living where there was no justice, where it was a crime to be a Christian. Jehovah gave them strength and wisdom to endure it. However, this is not to say that a person should always remain silent before an unjust court. There are times when good can be accomplished to the honor of Jehovah’s name by giving a bold witness. Jesus Christ pointed out that his followers would come before the rulers to give a witness and that they would speak. (Matt. 10:17-20) Acts 22 and 26 show how Paul gave a bold, tactful testimony before the authorities. So it is left to the accused Christian to judge whether it is advisable under the circumstances to speak freely or not, but if one chooses to speak he must tell the truth.

    Not to be confused with lying when no under oath


    w60 6/1 p. 352 Questions from Readers ***

    As a soldier of Christ he is in theocratic warfare and he must exercise added caution when dealing with God’s foes. Thus the Scriptures show that for the purpose of protecting the interests of God’s cause, it is proper to hide the truth from God’s enemies. A Scriptural example of this is that of Rahab the harlot. She hid the Israelite spies because of her faith in their God Jehovah. This she did both by her actions and by her lips. That she had Jehovah’s approval in doing so is seen from James’ commendation of her faith.—Josh. 2:4, 5; Jas. 2:25.

    This would come under the term "war strategy," as explained in The Watchtower, February 1, 1956, and is in keeping with Jesus’ counsel that when among wolves we must be as "cautious as serpents." Should circumstances require a Christian to take the witness stand and swear to tell the truth, then, if he speaks at all, he must utter the truth. When faced with the alternative of speaking and betraying his brothers or not speaking and being held in contempt of court, the mature Christian will put the welfare of his brothers ahead of his own, remembering Jesus’ words: "No one has greater love than this, that someone should surrender his [life] in behalf of his friends."—Matt. 10:16; John 15:13.

    More info


    w57 5/1 pp. 285-286 Use Theocratic War Strategy ***

    A WITNESS of Jehovah was going from house to house in Eastern Germany when she met a violent opposer. Knowing at once what to expect she changed her red blouse for a green one in the very next hallway. No sooner had she appeared on the street than a Communist officer asked her if she had seen a woman with a red blouse. No, she replied, and went on her way. Did she tell a lie? No, she did not. She was not a liar. Rather, she was using theocratic war strategy, hiding the truth by action and word for the sake of the ministry.

    In this she had good Scriptural precedent. Did not Rahab hide the Israelite spies by both action and word? Did not Abraham, Isaac, David and others likewise hide the truth at times when faced with a hostile enemy? They certainly did, and never do we read a word of censure for their doing so. Rather, we read of their being termed exemplary servants of Jehovah. Their actions were in line with Jesus’ wise counsel: "Look! I am sending you forth as sheep amidst wolves; therefore prove yourselves cautious as serpents and yet innocent as doves."—Matt. 10:16, NW.

    Perhaps some will wonder as to where the line is to be drawn between use of theocratic war strategy in hiding the truth and the telling of lies. First of all, let it be noted that whenever one takes an oath to tell the truth he is obligated to do so. By dedicating himself to do God’s will each Christian has taken a vow or made an oath to do God’s will and to be faithful to him. To this oath he certainly must be true. Likewise, when a Christian is placed on a witness stand he is obligated to speak the truth if he speaks at all. At times he may prefer to refuse to speak and suffer the consequences rather than betray his brothers or the interests of God’s work. And, of course, there is no occasion for use of war strategy when dealing with our Christian brothers. In dealing with them we tell the truth or tactfully remind them that what they seek to know does not concern them.

    Lies are untruths told for selfish reasons and which work injury to others. Satan told a lie to Eve that worked great harm to her and all the human race. Ananias and Sapphira told lies for selfish reasons. But hiding the truth, which he is not entitled to know, from an enemy does not harm him, especially when he would use such information to harm others who are innocent.

    A great work is being done by the witnesses even in lands where their activity is banned. The only way they can fulfill the command to preach the good news of God’s kingdom is by use of theocratic war strategy. By underground methods the literature is brought into the country and distributed. Would it make sense to hide this literature by one’s actions and then reveal its whereabouts by one’s words when queried? Of course not! So in time of spiritual warfare it is proper to misdirect the enemy by hiding the truth. It is done unselfishly; it does not harm anyone; on the contrary, it does much good.

    Today God’s servants are engaged in a warfare, a spiritual, theocratic warfare, a warfare ordered by God against wicked spirit forces and against false teachings. God’s servants are sent forth as sheep among wolves and therefore need to exercise the extreme caution of serpents so as to protect properly the interests of God’s kingdom committed to them. At all times they must be very careful not to divulge any information to the enemy that he could use to hamper the preaching work.


    For details see The Watchtower, February 1, 1956.

  • Highlander

    In actual practice, theocratic warfare comes down to this: Do or Say Anything that will give a good name to the WT corp, even if this means lying. It also means to leave out or not disclose any negative information that will give a bad name to the WT corp. When I was in my teens I was kind of a rebel and was arrested,, I remember the elders specifically telling

    me to not ever, ever, ever mention that I'm a jehovah's witness when I appear in court. Since my 'crime' really had nothing to do with what is writting in their precious elder's book,

    I was never reprooved or anything, but they did tell me over and over and on multiple occasions, don't say you're a jehovah's witness!

  • DaCheech

    All masked under the pretense of "Giving Jehova a good name"

  • PMJ

    if your in court and promise on the bible to tell the truth.then the organisation say we must tell the truth

  • blondie

    I always thought it was amazing that JWs were required to tell the truth in court but not to each other.

    As a man who said he had sworn to uphold secular law said to me, it isn't a lie if you don't get caught.

    Heard much the same from many elders who had lied to fellow JWs. I guess they don't think God sees or hears what they do, eh?


  • DannyHaszard
    In other words, will they actually lie and say they are

    not JWs

    I would estimate 50% of the time when a JW comes in behind me on a secular news forum to revile/reply they outright deny LIE that they are dubs.

    On the order of 15% of the time they will pretend to be of another religion example,"i am a catholic,but i wish i had the courage to be a Jehovah's Witness" >> I was truly amazed that the moonies call their deceptive protocol of lying:"heavenly deception".How this rings and resonates so closely with the Watchtower's;"theocratic warfare". The moonies twisted heavenly deception plays like this:"Satan's children lie to God's children,so in turn it's proper for God's children (e.g. the moonies) To lie and deceive Satan's children. [ A doctrine of Mr. Moon's is "Heavenly Deception", which briefly stated is this Because Satan deceives God's children, God's children, in turn, have the right to deceive Satan's children. Of course, you and I are defined by Mr. Moon as "Satan's children", so we are the victims who get sold their merchandise, along with the lie that it is for "youth work", "Orphans", or "drug rehabilitation". Mr. Moon has been put in jail for tax evasion, and continues to have troubles with the Internal Revenue Service in the U.S.A. He has added several major industries to his street activities and continues to rake in the money.]

    Jesus said his followers would be the salt of the earth not the scum of the earth.-Danny Haszard

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