I'm confused

by Auchmull 16 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • Auchmull

    I've been studying with a JW for a short time. I started searching the internet for more information because much of what she was saying and what I was reading made sense, but I didn't trust my own judgment. I haven't seen the ugliness that I read about here and as an outsider, it looks comforting. I don't have any formed religious beliefs, so she's really working with a blank canvas.

    I'm not at a place where I can honestly believe that the bible is *inspired* so it's all very hypothetical: IF the bible is truly the word of God, is what they're telling me accurate? I tried to read the 607/539 (538?) thread, but frankly found it hard to follow. I read about Isaiah prophesying the fall of Babylon, then found arguments that the latter part of Isaiah was written AFTER the fall... but the arguments were not well formed, so I'm left more confused. The arguments against evolution seem flawed because their definition of evolution is so limited - they don't seem to deny adaptation and natural selection as legitimate mechanisms. But hell -- I haven't seen evidence of a change from one species to another. Darwin's finches are still finches, those peppered moths are different, but still moths. What are the explanations for homo habilis, erectus, etc? Other species (not related to humans) that died off?

    I'm still coming here to see the Devil's Advocates, as it were -- to discover the questions that I want to ask, that I haven't been able to form. I don't have anyone to talk to about this - I've felt tremendously conflicted for the last several weeks.

  • looking_glass

    I can understand where you might find certain biblical events and the prophesy of upcoming things confusing, truthfully they are. I agree with the idea that maybe the bible itself is not 100% true. A lot of it is faith based.

    JWs will not show you the true side of themselves until you are completely in and then you start to see the gossip and back-biting. JWs were taught to be a good example to those outside the org and especially to people who are only studying.

    The thing I would like to point out that to me should be seriously considered by someone who is wondering about joining the religion is that if you get baptized there is no turning back. Should you decide you no longer want to be a JW, you will be DF'd and all the friends you made in the religion will be encouraged to shun you and if they do not, they will suffer serious consequences for failing to follow "scriptural guidance". The other problem is that being a JW you are discouraged from having friends outside the religion, which means that you will have given up all your friends. So your loss is two fold should you reconsider your choice in becoming a JW, as once you are DF'd you have no JW friends and you gave up your "worldly" friends for the religion.

    I would encourage you to be absolutely certain of your willingness to completely devote your life to the religion, otherwise, I would reconsider becoming a JW.

  • Lady Liberty
    Lady Liberty

    Dear Auchmull,

    Welcome to the forum!! It must be all VERY confusing. I personally believe in Jehovah God, as well as his son Christ Jesus. I was raised in the organization, but one day I began to question a very important issue. That issue you spoke of, 607 is CRUCIAL to the organization. For with this date it is the very foundation for their authority in their members lives. PLEASE, PLEASE, take the time to try and understand this issue. I just reposted my very first post on this forum on another thread, to a person who is in the organization, but having questions. I am going to repost it here in hopes it will help you understand the issue at hand from a witnesses prospective. I also have posted other information that you may feel important to know. Just like in a court of law it is important to try and see all the facts from both sides before forming a judgement. Yes the 607 issue can be very deep. But the fact is it can be very basic to understand too. Hopefully what I will post now, as well as repost in the future will be of help to you. What ever your decision may be, I wish you well.


    Lady Liberty

    Hello everyone,

    It's high time I introduce myself. I feel like I know many of you already, just by daily reading your posts over the last year. You all have been a support to my husband and I, even though you were not even aware we were even here. (I tried to keep my introduction brief, as I know long post are harder to read.) I was raised a JW as was my husband. We had ALWAYS been VERY regular and VERY active in the organization. My husband had been a ministerial servant for many years. About 3 years ago my parents left the Watchtower. We were devastated to put it mildly. My father had been a elder when I was young, and my mother had pioneered many times over the years as I grew up. They also were VERY strong and active in the organization. Because of the blood issue, which directly effected my family, and the child molestation issue, they began to have very serious questions. And as you all know, one question can lead to hundreds of others. Gradually they began to miss meetings. I now know they were trying to fade out. It was hard because I felt them slipping away, but they always made excuses. I loved them non-the less. However, our paths began to get wider apart.

    One day, before the summer assembly, my parents informed me that they had serious doubts. They tried to explain to me why they had not been at the meetings in so long and also why they would for the very first time in all my life not be attending to assembly. I felt like I had been run over by a bus! As they talked to me, I zoned out with disbelief, their voices became only a hum and blur in my mind. They had been the pillars to our whole family, and those pillars had just crumbled. From then on, my world as I have always known it was never the same.

    From time to time I would talk with my parents, begging them to reconsider, trying to reason with them from the literature. But since they had trained me so well with the whole "apostate" thing, I followed what they had trained me to do. I rejected any "Apostate" talk. I told them I never wanted to talk about it again, to never bring it up unless I had questions for them. It was just far too painful; to try so hard to bring them back around and get them to accept "Watchtower reasoning!" They promised they would never ever bring any of this up to our daughter. She being only 10, but VERY knowledgeable in the Watchtower ways. I was very afraid they could convince her this was not the "truth" and with teen years quickly approaching, I felt we might lose our daughter to "the world." But the one thing, out of everything we discussed before I cut off spiritual conversation with them, was the whole 607 issue. I remember my mother other telling me about all the different lines of evidences that do not support 607. She told me to check out the British Museum online. So I did. Sure enough the date given there was different than the 607 that I was always taught, and had taught others. But a quick look at the Appendix’s explanation put my mind at ease. I pushed the subject out of my mind, but it came back another day.

    Most of you are familiar with the movie National Treasure. Well, I loved it. After we saw it the first time I was telling my manicurist how great it was and a little about it. She informed me that there really are Freemasons. I was suprised. It made sense then, as to what all those Masonic Temples were I had seen in various places over the years. Like I do with any movie I love, I generally see it twice. While watching the movie, two things stuck me. First, the cross and the crown symbol that was once on our literature was in the movie. And second, the whole pyramid with the all seeing eye that is on the dollar bill, that too was on something years ago, wasn't it? I wondered. With those two questions, "Panders Box" was opened for my husband and me!

    That night I called my mother. I said, I have a question for you. Was there ever a pyramid on any of the literature? She said, "Yes, in the Divine Plan of the Ages." Realizing that these were symbols of the Freemasons, I asked if Russell was a Freemason. She said, "There is much speculation about it. But if he wasn't, he sure used ALOT of their symbols." I said,"ok. Thank you." And that was the end of that conversation. So.. Using the "devils tool", the Internet, I began searching for Russell and Freemasons.

    I know all of you know what I found. But for those who have not yet researched this, I found MANY disturbing things. Photos of Russell’s gravesite, the Masonic temple in view, as well as the Pyramid itself that Russell had the Bible students erect. What was all of this fascination of the Pyramid anyway? Well, I soon discovered, its called Pyramidology, and is HEAVILY steeped in demonism/spiritism. I still get goose bumps when I think of what I read that night! What was Russell doing involved with Freemason symbols, as well as Pyramidology??? Through our wonderful Google search engine, "the devils tool", I discovered that Russell based 1914 off the measurements of the inside of the Great Pyramid of Gehza. WHAT???!!!?? I asked myself! You have got to be kidding me?? I thought 1914 was based on 607. It had to be a coincidence! There is no way we teach 607 because of Pyramid roots! // Do we? So, getting out both sets of Encyclopedias we had, I found only 586/587 not 607! I looked in the Insight book, the Daniel book.... They all read 607! Then it all came back to me. I remembered my conversation with my mother many months prior, and I had gone to the British Museum. So I visited online once again. 586/587! The ONLY place I found 607 was in the society literature! Once again, the feeling of shock came over me. By now it was 2 or 3 in the morning. I just could not believe it! Could what my parents were trying to tell us all along be true?

    So. Around 4:00am I tried to slip into bed without my husband knowing I had never made it to bed to begin with. But. He knew I had been up all night. He said, "What have you been doing?" I said," Oh.

    just some research". When we finally got up I decided to share with him what I had discovered. He said, "Did you go to the Watchtower Library CD? I said, "No, I forgot about that." So he quickly pulled out the only reference to the discrepancy the society gives ...up, the Appendix to the Kingdom Come book. After reading it to me, and doing the simple math of 539 minus 70 years, equals 607, I thought, ok. I was relieved. For I knew that if 607 weren’t factual, my world as I knew it would come crashing down! As the months went by, it haunted me that the only place I found support for 607 was in the literature, and no where else was there any other support for 607. So without my husband’s knowledge, I continued to try to find support for 607. But the more I searched, the evidence continued to mount for the 586/587 date.

    I started talking to my husband about it again, but slowly. As he was convinced my parents were borderline "Apostate". And truthfully, so did I. We were afraid to question the organization. My husband it seemed was irritated that I wouldn't let it go and forget the whole date thing. But I could not sweep it under the carpet. I knew what it meant if it wasn't true. The whole foundation of this organization, including the authority it demands, crumbles! So. One Saturday he once again agreed to help me. And once again he went for the old "Appendix" routine. He said kind of sarcastically, " I don't see hats so difficult to understand". He wanted to simply go back the 70 years from 539 like the Appendix says to do. So I said, "No, prove it to me WITHOUT using any of the Societies literature." He said, "Ok." After about 5 hours, and after much study of the scriptures themselves, comparing it with the Kings lists, 586/587 was the match, NOT 607! He could not believe it! He finally realized the mental problem of "Cognicent Dissidence". After that realization, every meeting became more and more difficult. We found it harder and harder to sit through the meetings. Never had we realized how much that 607 date is drilled into the Jaws heads. But when you discover you are being lied to, it’s very hard to fake it. I would get extremely mad, and my face and chest would get all flushed because of being so upset as to what was being taught.

    We never meant to quit "cold turkey". But we did. And so here we are, we haven't been to a meeting in a year. It is amazing how easily we were thrown by the wayside. It really hurt, because we were so active and visible. But the only elder to call us, to see if we were ok, was an elderly brother who wasn't even a "acting elder." Where were our loving Shepherds? Certainly too busy to even pick up the phone to see if we were even alive. I know most of you who are out know those feelings all too well. Now we are on the JW "death row." It is another long story, but we are awaiting the reply from our elders regarding the discrepancy of 607. So far it has been over 5 weeks and still nothing! We kept it quiet for almost a year, but it got out, and now suddenly, we are persons of interest. However, Jehovah helped us, and I would like to share our meeting with all of you, possibly in another post. It may possibly help any that are faced with the elders.

    Just a couple of others things before I close. Friends, if you are trying to help get your loved ones out, the whole 607 issue should not be taken lightly! This is the reason MANY begin to question the organization! There have been so...many of you who posted information, as well as scanned old literature that I would have never found without your help! Just knowing we are not alone, and that so many of you have gone through this whole process already, has truly helped. You never know who is reading your posts, who through your encouraging words may one day break their silence and revile they have been there all along, also being helped. So to all of you. THANK YOU from the bottom of my heart! I look forward to posting here, and maybe helping someone else as well!


    You’re new friend,

    Lady Liberty

  • Lady Liberty
    Lady Liberty

    Hi again,

    Here is more info, that I posted a while ago that may help you.


    Lady Liberty

    Hi everyone,

    I just made this chart for my brother-in-law using the Bible as well as the book entitled Assyrian & Babylonian Chronicles by A.K. Grayson printed in 1975. Grayson is a world renound expert used to decipher the Assyrian and Babylonian Chronicles for the British Museum. I checked out this book from the local library. Although they had to send away to a College University for it. A interesting note: the Society uses this very book in the Insight Vol.2 under Nebuchadnezzar to support their dates. When I got this book, it was for the purpose of checking their dates and quotes of this author. As you will see by this chart, they have misquoted him to serve their own deceitful purpose! I included scriptures that support the chronicles. Like I said, I made this for my brother-in-law, but thought someone out there might be able to use it.

    Have a great night!

    Lady Liberty

    The Seventy Years: 609 to 539 BCE

    609- Nabopolassars 17 th reignal year. Babylon was dominating all surrounding nations. See Jer. 25:11, 25:17- 26. 27:6-8, 12-13(All the nations will have to SERVE the king of Babylon seventy years.) The 70 years begin. ( Babylonian Chronicle 3- BM 21901)

    607- Nabopolassars 19 th reignal year. Nebuchadnessar was not even in power yet! He was only a crowned prince at this time. (Babylonian Chronicle 4 –BM 22047)

    605- Nabopolassars 21 st reignal year. Battle of Carchemish , between Egypt and Babylon. Nabopolassar dies and Nebuchadnezar accends the thrown. This is year 0 for Nebuchadnezzars reign. Daniel finds himself exiled to Babylon, as well as the Royal offspring of Jerusalem, the utensils of the house of Jehovah were carried to Babylon. See Daniel 1- 2:1. Jer. 29:1,20 (Babylonian Chronicle 5- BM 21946)

    603- Nebuchadnezzars second reignal year. See. Dan. 2:1

    586/587- Jerusalem burned. Nebuchadnessars ninteenth reignal year. See Jer. 52:12-16 (There were still lowly ones left remaining in the city.)

    562-End of Nebuchadnezzars reign.

    557-Neriglissars third reignal year. ( Chronicle 6 –BM 25124)

    556- Nabonidus becomes King. (Nabonidus Chronicle 7- BM35382)

    539- 70 are fullfilled. Nabonidus is King of Babylon at this time. Cyrus overtakes Babylon in one night. Handwriting on the wall. Jews released from servitude. See- Dan. 5:25-26 Jer. 25: 12 ( Nabonidus Chronicle: Chronicle 7-BM 36304)

  • Quotes

    As JWs themselves sometimes say (when talking abuot OTHER religions), be sure to get ALL sides of the discussion before you make a decision. (Of course, they don't remind you of that when they are the topic of investigation; then the rules are "trust in God's Earthly Organization".

    Read the books: Crisis of Conscience, In Search of Christian Freedom, Apocalypse delayed, etc. Heck, even read the big red Watchtower "Revelation" book. These people think they have every single scripture of Revelatoin figured out... and then ask yourself why they can't figure out other things like whether or not the Sodommites and Gamorites will be resurrected.

    Stand back and get a "big picure" look at the Watch Tower organization and their drones called JWs. Look at what they DO, not what they say they do.

    You may just find, as poster here GaryBuss says eloquently, a "Real Estate and Publishing empire, operating as a (High Control) Cult, and cleverly disguised as a religion."


  • Quentin
    What are the explanations for homo habilis, erectus, etc? Other species (not related to humans) that died off?

    One of the standard explanations you might get from an individual jw is they all perished in the Flood...same goes for dinosaurs..as to what the publications say, someone will come along who's up to date with current doctrine...the society always leaves themselves plenty of wiggle room...there's no telling what the official stance is at this time...

    Sorry I can't give you more...you'll continue to discover that most wt teaching is mundane and limited in scope...therefore any explanation will be the same...

  • peacefulpete

    Auchmull, welcome and kudos to you for asking questions. As far the view of JWs and biological evolution, it is cut and dried, they do not accept its reality. However they are quite vague about how they define it, which leaves individual JWs with a great difference of opinion about what can and can't happen. In Awake articles they casually speak of this animal being related to that animal without really considering what that implies. Most JWs who garden recognize that watermelons and acorn squash for instance are related and tigers and housecats but they insist there is some mysterious genetic boundary that prevented prehistoric catlike animals being related to cats. Its really quite arbitrary and a matter of semantics. On this forum are many opinions about evolution yet they are together in their disillusionment with the WTS's hierchal control structure and unethical behavior. IMO the best reseach you can do is understanding how high control groups operate. If your family or friends have expressed concern that you may be getting involved with a cult (ignore the word for a moment) try to understand why they feel that way. Groups (especially religious) that have a rigid topdown structure where the leadership insists it has a special enlightened interpreation of hidden secrets and tolerates no dissent, those that regard those outside the group as less desirable, dangerous or untrustworthy and those groups that insist upon the member primarily dedicate his resources and time to fundraising or recruitment are regarded as "high control groups" by mental health care professionals.

  • Nadja

    I started searching the internet for more information because much of what she was saying and what I was reading made sense,

    Very good idea. Good for you for not being lazy and doing some legwork.

    but I didn't trust my own judgment.

    Trust your judgment, but also ask friends (those who have proven themselves and aren't invested either way in your religious future) to give you a second opinion. You can think for yourself. You are obviously an intelligent person. It is their goal to convince you that you can't and shouldn't think for yourself. If they achieve this goal, they literally have the keys to your mind.

    I haven't seen the ugliness that I read about here and as an outsider, it looks comforting.

    Likely you won't. They try very hard to appear happy and loving 24-7 in front of a prospective convert. I've literally heard a witness say "don't scare off my study!" And likely most of the witnesses you'll meet aren't as bad as some of the ones mentioned here; it's not that they are "ugly" all the time, it's that the consequences and effects of that ugliness, when it does surface, are absolutely unacceptable.

    I don't have any formed religious beliefs, so she's really working with a blank canvas.

    Yikes. It's not like you can just go out and pick up some religious beliefs at the nearest Kmart, but truly, if you can start to get an idea of your own core philosophy, you'll be much better protected. You're in a vulnerable spot otherwise because she can more easily mold you if you aren't yet set in any specific position.

    I'm not at a place where I can honestly believe that the bible is *inspired* so it's all very hypothetical: IF the bible is truly the word of God, is what they're telling me accurate?

    This is where I strongly re-emphasize studying with more than one bible and seeking out third-party commentaries on bible passages. You'll quickly note the diversity of translation and interpretation of meaning.

    The arguments against evolution seem flawed because their definition of evolution is so limited - they don't seem to deny adaptation and natural selection as legitimate mechanisms.

    Just remember that you can't *prove* a scientific theory, only disprove it. An unchanging earth is a theory that can be disproven with physical evidence. Evolution cannot.

    But hell -- I haven't seen evidence of a change from one species to another.

    How about dog breeding? All those "toy" and "teacup" size dogs? Dog breeding is an individual seizing the steering wheel of genetic selection and hitting the gas hard. Yes, I know, the dog breeding is a deliberate process, unlike the environmentally-driven evolution theory, but it does prove that genes from one generation translate into physical differences for the succeeding generation, and with evolution, the environment's challenges determine which gene carriers survive, based on their genetically-determined physical attributes.

    What are the explanations for homo habilis, erectus, etc? Other species (not related to humans) that died off?

    They had fundamental differences in the physical expression of their genes that made them undercompetitive and therefore they lost out to other species in their habitats.

    I'm still coming here to see the Devil's Advocates, as it were -- to discover the questions that I want to ask, that I haven't been able to form.

    Again, very very good idea. Diversity equals excellence, in opinion and perspective.

    I don't have anyone to talk to about this - I've felt tremendously conflicted for the last several weeks.

    And likely you will until you decide where you stand. It's a tough spot, I was there. But it will really build your character. Hang in there!!

  • codeblue

    Hi there...

    If you are feeling terribly conflicted, that might mean you have a good reason to not be involved with this religion.

    I too, was raised in this religion, very zealous and faithful, and like Lady Liberty, when finding out the "real facts" about certain issues, I could NO longer deal with the hypocrisy. The lack of love within the religion hurt as well. Imagine relocating and the elders come to welcome you and say: "we need to see your publishers cards, YOU might be pedophiles". (I sank in horror on my couch that they would think we were pedophiles)

    You have a conscience for a reason. I am glad you are researching. Hope your confusion ends soon.

  • jwfacts


    One reason that you are confused is that you are tackling two totally separate issues at the same time;

    • Is the bible true
    • Is the Watchtower Society God's only representative

    I recommend that you look at the easier question first, is the WTS God's only representative. Once you have decided on that, then you can worry about whether you wish to trust the bible and become a Christian.

    Jehovah's Witnesses claim that God chose them to be his organization in 1919. What is the proof of this? Were they teaching the same truth then as now? Does it make sense that God would say anyone not associated with this small organization is worthy of destruction at Armageddon?

    I recommend that you look at http://jwfacts.com/index_files/5min.htm to learn what they did believe in 1919.

    If you decide you would like to belong to a religion it would be advisable to keep clear of any that display cult like features and try to manipulate the way members behave. A classic sign of this is any group that applies strict policies on shunning. There are many groups around that can give you a nice religious way of life without controlling what you wear, who you are allowed to talk to, what you can read, whether or not you should get an education etc. Once baptised even coming here and reading opinions off this site will no longer be allowed.

    Remember, there is no need to rush your decision.

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