The Gentiles Times Reconsidered--Again but this Time By Using the Bible

by thirdwitness 1380 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • DannyHaszard

    Priceless pic this was my experience 1992 pre-internet when i found so many books that referenced JWs as an adventist spinoff it blew me away

  • fjtoth

    "What! Do you not know that unrighteous persons will not inherit God’s kingdom? Do not be misled. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who deny 1914 marks the end of the Gentile times, nor men who deny the Watchtower is God's organization, nor men who deny no eye will actually see Christ when he returns, nor thieves, nor greedy persons, nor drunkards, will inherit God’s kingdom. And yet that is what some of you were. But you have been washed clean, but you have been sanctified, but you have been declared righteous by faithfully accepting everything the Watchtower tells you." (1 Corinthians 6:9-11, Governing Body Version)

  • fjtoth

    "This means everlasting life, their accepting of 1914 as the date of Christ's return. Otherwise, they must be disfellowshipped for apostasy!" (John 17:3, Governing Body Version)

  • fjtoth
  • Hellrider

    A ha ha ha Fjtoth, ahhh, that last one just killed me. I`m dying of laughter here

  • jwfacts

    3W I wonder how you will feel as you lay on your death bed in old age. I imagine you will look back to these conversations and wonder why you devoted yourself to something that Miller admitted was wrong 150 years ago. Oh that's right, even the Governing Body do not have faith in this prophecy. That is why in 1995 they changed the generation teaching so that it can go on for hundreds of years.

  • AlanF

    As usual, thirdwitless, you failed to deal with at least 95% of my arguments. So typical.

    And as usual, you continue to misrepresent issues, even after having been corrected numerous times. For example, in your post # 276 you wrote:

    : So AlanF is downing the NWT for translating the word parousia (which literally means presence) as presence.

    Your definition -- as you've been told at least a dozen times by now -- is incomplete, because parousia literally means "presence", "coming", "advent", "return" and so forth. Because you keep knowingly giving partial definitions, you're a liar.

    The whole point here is that translation of a specific word from Greek to English, when the Greek has multiple meanings, must be dictated by context. The fact that you continue to misrepresent this issue by failing to acknowledge it, and continue to pretend that context-based translation does not even exist, proves again that you're a liar.

    You seem to think that the NWT consistently translates Greek words into the same English word. Well it does not. It often uses multiple but appropriate English words to translate the same Greek word. It also sometimes uses multiple but inappropriate English words to translate the same Greek word.

    Here is what the NWT Reference Bible of 1984 says in the Introduction (p. 7):

    Uniformity of rendering has been maintained by assigning one meaning to each major word and by holding to that meaning as far as the context permits.

    Note well: "as far as the context permits." This is precisely the issue you're avoiding.

    How far does the NWT actually go in "assigning one meaning to each major word"? Not very far, unless a doctrinal issue such as involves parousia is at stake. Obviously, the NWT is "consistent" only when Fred Franz wanted it to be.

    Here is an example of this inconsistency: the NWT translates the Greek root word mellw (to be about to, to be on the point of; to intend, propose, have in mind; to be inevitable, be destined; in the future, to come; delay) in various ways, depending on Fred Franz's interpretation of the context:

    (Luke 7:2) was ailing and was about to [mellw] pass away.

    (Acts 16:27) was about to [mellw] do away with himself.

    (John 4:47) he was at the point of [mellw] dying.

    (Revelation 10:4) I was at the point of [mellw] writing.

    (1 Peter 5:1) the glory that is to [mellw] be revealed.

    (Acts 18:14) But as Paul was going to [mellw] open his mouth.

    (Acts 27:10) is going to [mellw] be with damage and great loss.

    (Acts 5:35) as to what YOU intend to [mellw] do respecting these men.

    (John 7:35) Where does this man intend [mellw] going.

    (Revelation 3:2) the things remaining that were ready [mellw] to die.

    (Matthew 11:14) He himself is Elijah who is destined [mellw] to come.

    (Matthew 12:32) not in this system of things nor in that to come [mellw].

    (2 Peter 2:6) a pattern for ungodly persons of things to come [mellw].

    (Hebrews 6:5) powers of the coming [mellw] system of things.

    (Acts 17:31) a day in which he purposes [mellw] to judge.

    (Acts 26:2) it is before you I am [mellw] to make my defense.

    (2 Peter 1:12) I shall be disposed [mellw] always to remind YOU.

    (Romans 8:13) YOU are sure [mellw] to die.

    (Revelation 12:5) who is [mellw] to shepherd all the nations.

    (Revelation 1:19) the things that will [mellw] take place after these.

    (1 Timothy 6:19) a fine foundation for the future [mellw].

    (Acts 22:16) And now why are you delaying [mellw]?

    I count 15 different English words assigned to mellw in the above. So much for claims of consistency of translation.

    Of course, in the above, the inconsistency is perfectly acceptable, because context dictates the particular shade of meaning, and the necessity to render passages intelligibly plays a strong role.

    Here is an example where doctrinal considerations have influenced the NWT rendering.

    According to Bauer's Lexicon (3rd edition, BDAG, p. 627) the Greek mellw followed by an infinitive has the meaning: "to take place at a future point of time and so to be subsequent to another event, be about to." Under the subheading "with the present infinitive", some sub-definitions are given: "be about to, be on the point of". A number of Bible passages are listed to show these meanings, including:

    (Luke 7:2) was ailing and was about to [mellw] pass away.

    (Acts 16:27) was about to [mellw] do away with himself.

    (John 4:47) he was at the point of [mellw] dying.

    Bauer's also lists four passages under the description:

    "Occasionally almost = begin" and gives as the first example:

    (Revelation 10:4) I was at the point of [mellw] writing.

    Then three other passages are listed: Mark 13:4, Luke 21:7 and Revelation 10:7. For Mark 13:4, it shows the Greek phrase hotan melle tauta sunteleisthai panta: "when all these things are (or begin) to be accomplished". The Kingdom Interlinear shows this phrase literally as: "whenever may-be-about these-(things) to-be-concluded all". The New International Version (NIV) renders these passages as:

    Revelation 10:7: In the days when the seventh angel is about to sound his trumpet.

    Mark 13:4: Tell us, when will these things happen? And what will be the sign that they are all about to be fulfilled?

    Luke 21:7: "Teacher," they asked, "when will these things happen? And what will be the sign that they are about to take place?"

    What I'm concerned with here is the Greek phrase hotan melle followed optionally by tauta and then an infinitive. Here, melle is in the subjunctive tense. Thus, the Kingdom Interlinear has the following literal renderings for this phrase:

    Revelation 10:7: whenever he-may-be-about to-be-trumpeting

    Mark 13:4: whenever may-be-about these-(things) to-be-concluded

    Luke 21:7: whenever may-be-about these-(things) to-be-occurring

    Note that the NIV renderings exactly correspond to the literal Kingdom Interlinear's renderings of melle: "may-be-about".

    Here is the NWT rendering of these passages:

    Revelation 10:7: In the days of the sounding of the seventh angel, when he is about to blow his trumpet.

    Mark 13:4: Tell us, When will these things be, and what will be the sign when all these things are destined to come to a conclusion?

    Luke 21:7: Teacher, when will these things actually be, and what will be the sign when these things are destined to occur?

    Note that the rendering of Revelation 10:7 is in line with the other sources referenced above, but the renderings of Mark 13:4 and Luke 21:7 are inconsistent with them. Why is that? Why does the NWT rendering disagree with Bauer's Lexicon, and even with the Kingdom Interlinear?

    One answer is that Fred Franz used his understanding of the context to render the passages differently from the main meaning of mellw (to be about to) and used one of the other meanings. But just what about the context would make a difference? The Greek phrases of all three passages are identical in form, so why render them differently? Why not render Revelation 10:7 as "when he is destined to blow his trumpet"?

    The reason for Franz's unusual rendering is that using "may be about to" in Mark 13:4 and Luke 21:7 poses severe difficulties for JW doctrine, whereas using that phrase in Revelation 10:7 poses no such problems.

    What doctrinal problems are presented by using "may be about to"? The problem is that these passages are parallel to Matthew 24:3, and if one concludes that all three mean the same thing, then the NWT's rendering of Matthew 24:3 is inconsistent with the other two. This is easy to see by quoting the NWT on this passage:

    Matthew 24:3: Tell us, When will these things be, and what will be the sign of your presence and of the conclusion of the system of things?

    The question "when will these things happen?" is common to all three passages. Mark 13:4 and Luke 21:7 then pose the question, "what will be the sign that all these things are about to happen?" Applying this understanding to Matthew 24:3 immediately allows us to rephrase the 2nd question in the NWT: "what will be the sign that your presence and the conclusion of the system of things are about to take place?" But his means that the "sign" must occur in advance of the "presence" -- and this contradicts the Watchtower Society's doctrine that this "presence" began in 1914 and that the "sign" takes place beginning in 1914 and ending at "the great tribulation", whenever that might be.

    So here we have a prime example of where the New World Translation's rendering of a single Greek word in certain passages is not based on grammatical considerations or even contextual ones, but purely on doctrinal necessity.

    So much for claims that the NWT renders Greek words consistently and in accord with objective standards. The NWT is demonstrably doctrinaire and skewed by pre-existing JW doctrine.

    Continuing with my demonstration of thirdwitless' dishonesty, here's another misrepresentation from his post # 276:

    : If the NWT had used liberties and translated it as coming AlanF would have claimed that we translate words to fit whatever we are trying to convey.

    Nonsense. I judge each case on its own merits. I consider a wide array of source references before coming to a judgment.

    You, on the other hand, consider no references aside from what you find in Watchtower literature. Your recent posts contain nothing that is not found in standard Watchtower treatments of our present subject.

    : Did you ever think that maybe JWs beliefs are based on the fact that parousia or presence was really the word used in the Bible rather than coming up with a doctrine and then trying to translate the Bible to fit that doctrine. In other words our doctrine came forth because of what the Bible said about parousia first not that our doctrine came forth first and then we tried to mold the word parousia around our beliefs.

    Of course I have, and I've rejected that scenario because of the actual history of the doctrine. In my post # 4692 from yesterday, I stated:

    The idea of an invisible return caught on among the followers of the Adventist Nelson Barbour shortly after Barbour’s prediction that Christ would return in 1873 or 1874 failed. To salvage the prediction, they seized on the fact that parousia, used in Matthew 24:3 and usually translated as "coming," could also be translated as "presence." They found such a rendering in Benjamin Wilson’s New Testament translation The Emphatic Diaglott, which renders the part of the verse we are concerned with as "What will be the sign of thy presence, and of the consummation of the age?" They used this idea to explain how Christ could have come in 1874 without anyone noticing. So Barbour adopted the notion that parousia means "presence" to salvage his failed prediction. In 1876 Charles Taze Russell met up with Barbour and adopted his views on this, teaching that Christ’s invisible parousia or presence began in 1874.

    In other words, the JW doctrine of the parousia was first invented to excuse Barbour's failed prediction about 1873/74. From such roots it has continued with little change until today. The only real difference is that Russell and Barbour taught that this "invisible presence" began in 1874, whereas in 1943 the Society changed that to 1914.

    The fact that you asked such a question shows either that you did not read my post, which you pretended to respond to -- in which case you're dishonest -- or that you didn't comprehend what you read -- in which case you're just plain stupid. Which is it?

    Other posters have given good answers to the rest of your post, so I'll end here.


  • AlanF

    Fisherman, I'm Alan Feuerbacher, as you surmised.


  • stevenyc

    Thirdwitness: And just to make this clear, yes, the master did erchomai in 1914. And he stayed thus his parousia began. He will erchomai forth again at Armageddon at the end of his parousia to finish the job he started in 1914

    Ah, the famous "third-coming". You know, there's a joke in there, however, this isn't in there Adult section so ....

    I love the way thirdwitness boldly proclaims the "simplicity" of the governing bodies teaching. I was brought up on this crap, and used to convert people using it. I read his link to the 'faithful and discreet slave', and I had to re-read it twice to understand it, it was so simple.

    In fact, thirdwitness should be disfellowshipped for what he wrote:

    The reality is that even if the faithful and discreet slave has not yet been appointed over all of the master's belongings (as interpreted by some) he has still been appointed to provide the food because he has proven himself to be faithful and discreet. It is really only a matter of quibbling over a word or phrase and its perceived interpretation. The interpretation of 'all the belongings' as given to us by the faithful and discreet slave clearly shows us that they believe that they have only been appointed over the earthly belongings of the master because of the increase that their faithfulness has brought. So whether or not the faithful slave has been appointed over all the belongings as of yet as interpreted by someone else really changes nothing from our standpoint. We still are under obligation to find that faithful and discreet slave that has increased the master's belongings and take in the food that is provided if we want to to be sustained. Certainly it would not be worth leaving Jehovah's organization over such a minor point. Especially when considering all the basic truths that we have learned from Jehovah by means of that faithful and discreet slave.

    The Watchtower Feb 1, 1985 says: Hence, the invisible Master has appointed this dependable "slave" class "over all his belongings" of a spiritual kind.

    The Watchtower Jan 15, 2001 says: ‘The faithful slave’ has been ‘appointed over all his master’s belongings.’

    The Watchtower Dec 1, 1992 says: 'The year 1914 began what the Bible calls “the Lord’s day.” (Revelation 1:10) Momentous events were to take place during that day, including the identifying of “the faithful and discreet slave” and the appointing of that one “over all [the Master’s] belongings.'


  • AuldSoul
    thirdwitness: The visions of Revelation take place in the Lord's day from 1914 onward.

    Are you really so ignorant of your own organization's dogma that you don't know the first three chapters of Revelation are counsel to 1st Century congregations? The very verse in question specifically expresses the ones to whom the introduction is made—unambiguously.

    "John to the seven congregations that are in the [district of] Asia"

    Someone is not a king until they are enthroned and vested with ruling authority. Jesus was granted all authority in heaven and on earth by the time the events of Matthew 28:18 were recorded. Your imaginary requirement to wait for 1914 is not founded on Scripture. Jesus was already ruling over the kings of the earth in the 1st Century, according to the Bible.

    You did not answer my question. John announced this Revelation as a message from Jesus, and identified Jesus to seven 1st Century congregations as "The Ruler of the kings of the earth."

    How do you explain his identifying Jesus by this title to congregations in the 1st Century more than 1800 years before you claim he was due that title?


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