Here's what i'm putting out there.
Every JW has a list of teachings that they know 'prove' they are the only true religion. While they turn to many things in order to prove their points, I have noticed a special tendancy to turn to just a few things in the end.
- JWs don't believe in the immortality of the soul
- JWs don't believe in Hellfire
- JWs use the name Jehovah
- JW's don't believe in the trinity
Of course, the first two can be knocked right off the list because 2nd day adventists teach this as well as many others. I like to point out second day adventists because there are MORE of them than there are JWs.
The Jehovah issue actually can be denounced eaisly by simply pointing to the fact that Jesus said his name was more important.
That leaves the trinity. What are ways at helping JWs get past this as an issue, or at least ways we can combat it? How have you dealt with the issue of the trinity? Curious...
Why does the trinity matter... or not?
Here's what i'm putting out there.
I doubt if a truly committed jw would even consider pro - trinity teachings. I know I wouldn't have done in times past. They would have to have some doubts about the wts teachings before they could be persuaded to look at anything the org says is wrong.
Basic wts teachings like hell fire, gods name and the trinity are so hard - wired into the average dubs cocsciousness by the constant indoctrination they are subjected to at meetings and assemblies, as well as in the publications that it's hard to imagine getting to think in any other way. That would call for independent thinking, and most of them have lost the ability to do that anyway.
I guess that question might be posed to a JW: is holding a particular belief about Christ something that salvation depends upon? For example, is it required to believe that Jesus is Michael the Archangel, or not? If not, then maybe the grace of God is able to extend to others who understand the nature of Christ even more differently.
Hos 13:4, Isa 43:11, 45:21 says only God is our Savior. Lk 2:11, Phil 3:20, Tit 2:3, 3:6,2Pet 1:1, 2:20, 3:18. all claim Jesus is our savior. Jesus in Isa 9:6 is called mighty God Jehovah is mighty God in Isa.10:20,21. Isa 44:24 says I jehovah alone created everything John 1:1, 2,3, Jesus created everything
The trinity, or lack thereof, is important to the watch tower society because it gives them a higher position than the rank and file publisher. The FDS (Governing Body) is the only group of men who have this special relationship with Christ. Only they can receive inspiration. If Christ / God / Spirit where one and the same, they would lose this power.
I tried to have a cool straight forward discussion with my JW folks over the trinity issue and as soon as I said that I can prove the trinity from the scriptures they told me this conversation is over !!!!!! I just laughed and went home, saying to myself that figures.
The so-called "pagan" Trinity works as a bogeyman to the average JW mind.
When I left JWs I was certainly not a convinced Trinitarian, but I had realised that the role ascribed to Jesus in WT doctrine was a terrible reduction of the different NT christologies. That made me, at the very least, more sympathetic to Trinitarianism. If the latter was wrong, it was definitely not wronger than a doctrine reducing Jesus to the technical role of "ransom price".
So I would encourage a believing JW not to bother too much about the Trinity but to read the NT and see what picture(s) of "Jesus" actually emerge(s). Then read about early church history and see how the Trinitarian formulae came about.
personally I think both sides make a big deal out of nothing.
if a believer wishes to go by the bible alone, he should just accept what it says no more no less... the bible never teaches a trinity and never does not exactly teach one either, so it should be left at that... this co-ercions to force people into one camp or the other is just human ignorance at work.
if Jesus cared about it as much as many seem to think, he should have said something more straight forwards about its importance... that he did not, indicates that he really did not care about it as an issue and neither should those who follow after him.
when I left JWs, I pondered if not them, then who? I came to see that no one is the best answer... its all ignorant people worrying about stupid things rather than focusing on what even Jesus said was important--- loving God, your neighbor and your enemy and working on removing the beams from your own eyes instead of the splinters in everyone elses....
if your eye offends you, but you what you just read, you know what to do (^_^)
I guess I'm still considered a JW due to the fact I still attend the meetings, but I know they don't have the truth, in fact I don't believe any religious body has the whole truth. As far as the trinity is concerned, I would never believe it and trying to 'prove' the trinity is a waste of time to me and probably most JW's or EX JWs. but I have come to realize Jesus has a far greater importance then the WTS has taught us, they keep teaching that God Jehovah is the judge, but its Jesus that will judge us, the WTS do also claim this time to time but they water it down.
I think what catches people is that the WTS is very good at exposing the lies and inconsistency’s of other religions but are even better at covering their own lies and inconsistency’s.
What did it for me is when I realized that Charles Russell got 1914 from the pyramids, 1914 is the WHOLE basis of their theology
When taking an approach like that, the WT made it clear that religion is a brand. Use our soap because it make your, clothes, carpet, car, theeth, dishes, white, clean, the lot.
There are several Christian Groups who claim that believing in the trinity is essential to 1) being a genuine Christian an 2) receiving a status of being rescued
The message the NT conveys that it is possible to be reconcilled with God through one name only.
Basically, the NT is very abiguious about the matter. If the matter would be of such enourmous interest, wouldn´t God have provided a more clearer view of the matter?
Please, read Philipians 2:5-11. Please, take special note of verse 6. To a JW this text is clear cut. However. Reading this scripture from the ground text a total different picture emerges. Here´s why:Phi 2:6 ?? e? µ??f? ?e?? ?pa???? ??? a?pa?µ?? ???sat? t? e??a? ?sa ?e?
hos en morphe theou huparcho ou hapagmos hegomai ho eimai isa theo
the in form god came into existence/exists not snatching/robbery deems the to be equal god
Now, please check the words the WT has inserted to convey their arian-like stand.........
Who[, although, he was] existing in God’s form[, gave] no consider[ation to a] seizure[, namely that he should] be equal [to] God.
If we omit the added words:
who existing in God’s form, no consider seizure be equal God.
To what conclusion would a JW now come to (apart from being apaostate, fals religio, bla bla. )? Indeed, most could not come to a conclusion.
Please, note that the standard JW reply, does not adress this NWT translation biase. Instead they attack the translators who had the idea of translating robbery/snatching with holding on to. Which is not the point of discussion but with reasoning on the scriptures one does not have to reason at all.
I did not show this to invoke a trinity discussion but to just show that the bible is not very clear in this matter and JW have a trenmendous unfounded biase. May be this may help them to overcome the issue.