I had my circuit assembly last weekend. It was absolutely mind numbing, but I took extensive notes, and I thought I'd share the key points with everyone here for your reading pleasure.
I feel I'd made a lot of progress since my Convention in June. I was very confused at this time, and following 3 days of mind control, I didn't know what to believe, so I was worried I'd get a 'What if?' feeling from this assembly again, but I had no problems seeing through this nonsense.
If you want to see a programme of the weekend, see Blondie's post here: http://www.jehovahs-witness.com/6/120285/2122518/post.ashx#2122518
This is very long as it's a review of the whole 2 days. If you want to shorten your reading, I recommend just reading the highlights, which in my opinion were the Dedication and Baptism talk Saturday morning, and the Public talk Sunday afternoon. 'How can you survive Jehovah's day of fury? Saturday Morning. 'Store up treasures in the right place'
This talk was given by my District Overseer. Nothing overly special. He said storing something meant putting it in a safe place, and that we couldn't be guaranteed our money was safe anywhere on Earth, as investments can go wrong etc... he used examples of hyper-inflation in Germany after WW2, and more recently, Zimbwabwe, as if they really have anything to do with us...
He did say 'There's nothing wrong with saving' and went on to say how it was ok to save money for things such as retirements etc... but then threw this nice little statement in: 'Many parents save up money to allow their children to go University, and many parents in the truth save up money to allow their children to pioneer once they finish school.'
His point was that Earthly treasures are short-lived, compared to Heavenly treasure, which was a good name with Jehovah. This was gained, of course, by faithfully serving Jehovah (WTBTS)
'How are many storing up treasures in heaven?'
The speaker made it quite clear that only JW's were storing up treasures in heaven. And this was being done... by Service of course!
We were told to ask ourselves? 'Are we doing enough?'
There were 5 interviews. 4 with pioneers, and 1 older one who used to be a pioneer. They all spoke about how they simplified their life and changed their situation to allow them to DO MORE for Jehovah. (WTBTS) All were of course, the happiest people in the world, and truly blessed, since they were pioneers. I tell you what though, I didn't feel like the happiest person in the world when I was a pioneer, I felt constantly exhausted, and disappointed that I wasn't a good enough teacher to even start a bible study.
Dedication and Baptism
We had ONE baptism this assembly! Incredible, over 500 in attendance, and just ONE baptism. And who was it? A young teenage girl who had been brought up in 'The Truth'
The speaker described the baptism as a promise to Jehovah. A promise to serve him (WTBTS) He said that wicked people couldn't keep promises, and said we would not want to become like these ones by not keeping our dedication promise!
He also said those not keeping their dedication are stupid, and used some OT examples of this. Most notably, the nation of Israel, which he described as a 'stupid apostate nation.'
Rather interestingly, he broke down the questions and stated their meaning. I waited in great anticipation to see how he would describe that controversial second question.
The first question is: ?On the basis of the sacrifice of Jesus Christ, have you repented of your sins and dedicated yourself to Jehovah to do his will?
He said you had to have faith that Jesus died for us. Nothing controversial there, and that we need to have repented of our sins and rejected the world.
The second question is: Do you understand that your dedication and baptism identify you as one of Jehovah's Witnesses in association with God's spirit-directed organization?
I actually thought of Auldsoul, and his post here: http://www.jehovahs-witness.com/12/118130/1.ashx when I heard this. First he spoke about how it is necessary to acquire wisdom and knowledge of Jehovah and the bible before baptism.
'And the second part of the question...' He first said it was absolutely imperative that we have faith in God's Organisation, but then I was really taken aback when he said 'This isn't just blind faith in a faceless Corporation' WHAT? Of course it is! That's exactly what they demand isn't it? Sadly, he didn't expand on what he meant here, and went on to say that it also meant loving your brothers and sisters, and taking council from the elders.
In his prayer he talked about faith in Jehovah and his spirit directed Organisation. Except for his obligatory mention at the end of the prayer, Jesus was never mentioned. Saturday Afternoon: Experiences:
One pioneer brother, and one pioneer sister spoke about their success from inviting people to the Convention with those flyers, and the studies they'd started etc... The interviewer said 'It just shows that there are still people out there searching for the Truth.' This was certainly evident during the baptism talk.
'Keep on seeking first the kingdom... and all these other things will be added to you.'
Nothing too interesting here. Put all your faith in Jehovah, and depend on him. DO MORE, and he will look after you.
'Keep on seeking first the kingdom... in troublesome season.'
This guy was very well trained in Watchtower speak.
Troublesome season of course meant preaching in every season, no matter the weather...
He quoted 'a bible commentator, but never gave his name (sound familiar?) I didn't get the whole quote written down, but did get that it meant a 'Restless, earnest work' 'in bitter opposition.' The work the Society puts us through can certainly be described as restless.
He also said, that whilst context suggested the 'troublesome season' scripture meant teaching within the Congregation it 'No doubt' applied to all preaching work. No doubt, you can spot the Watchtower speak in this paragraph.
And of course, he stressed that Satan was desperate for us to fail, and was clearly out to get us.
He had 3 interviews.
The first was a sister who had been baptised for 63 years! She had managed to remain faithful by prayer and study, and asked to express her appreciation to Jehovah and his Organisation. No mention of Jesus.
The second was a brother who had been baptised for 40 years. He struggled after his son left the truth, and his wife died, and he wanted to give up, but loving association of the brothers helped him.
The last was a sister who had been baptised at my Convention in June. She spoke about how her disfellowshipped mother had left her family, and how she had to stop contact with her... And then how she was offered to join a County running team. She described this as a trick of Satan's, and said that after seeing her mother and older brother leave, she would not fall for it. I know this girl, I'm not sure of the details of the situation with her mother, but I've seen her run, and she is fast. I'm sure she got offered a place in the running team because of Satan's influence on their scouts, and that it had nothing to do with her natural running ability.
The name Jesus, was never actually mentioned in this talk.
'Keep on seeking first the kingdom... in the face of economic hardship.'
Interivews with brothers who looked like losing their job, but put Jehovah (The WTBTS) first, and how everything turned out ok for them!
A demo with a brother who turns down a promotion to keep Jehovah (WTBTS) first. We get these EVERY assembly/Convention. I wish they could write some new material.
Jesus was not mentioned in this talk.
'Keep on seeking first the kingdom... despite advancing age and limitations.'
The speaker went on about how many thought that the New System would have come by now. He said they were disappointed when their predictions about their children not going to school, not going to work, or them not reaching retirement in this System were false. I wonder where they got these crazy ideas.
Some interviews with older members, telling us how they dealt with illness and problems in old age, but still managed to get to meetings, do service etc...
Jesus was not mentioned in this talk.
'Highly esteem riches greater than the treasures of Egypt.?
This talk was given by my Circuit Overseer. He used the example of Howard Carter, an archaeologist who found lots of ancient Egyptian treasures, to show that Egypt had a lot of gold.
He said Egypt was symbolic of worldly people, those who put their faith in money rather than Jehovah. And that all the world has to offer is money and entertainment (What a wicked thing to offer!) And couldn't compare to the greatest treasure on Earth, knowledge of God, provided, of course, by God's appointed channel.
For the 4th talk running, the name 'Jesus' was never mentioned.
'Fulfilling our treasured ministry despite trials'
This was another talk by the District Overseer. He said that the angels wanted to do the Ministry, but Jehovah gave us the work, and that we should therefore see it as a privilege.
We need to be DOING MORE. Doing our most to please Jehovah (WTBTS)
He gave two experiences. One of a brother in a Central American country where the work is banned, who gave a tract to a guy at a bus stop. He seen him again several months later, and the guy had joined a Congregation, and was planning on being baptised. All because of one tract! Another was of a sister in Australia, who also started a bible study, through discussions on a bus with another girl.
He finished by emphasising that our faithfulness to Jehovah (WTBTS), will result in a place in the New System.
"Store up... treasures in heaven." 2007 Circuit Assembly review
excuse me while I go puke.......
Sunday Morning I hope you're not too tired yet!
'Examining the Scriptures daily'
'Symposium: Be rich toward God... In what sense?'
In the sense that we need to put Jehovah (WTBTS) first.
We need to be like the merchant seeking that fine pearl. That while many would think he was stupid for putting all his eggs in one basket, we should imitate him, and put all our eggs in Jehovah's (WTBTS's) basket. Depend on Jehovah! He'll provide!
He continually stated the System could end very soon. Maybe even tomorrow! Since tomorrow was Monday, this has now passed.
'Honor Jehovah with your valuable things.'
We are living in urgent times, and must use those times to the full, in service to Jehovah (WTBTS) I'm seeing a common theme in the talks here.
An interview with an elder, and how he finds time to go on Shepherding visits, to pre-study, and have an important role on the Regional Building Committee. I'm sure his wife appreciated his efforts in serving his Congregation and the Organisation in his free time.
We were also told not to watch too much television. It wastes precious study time.
There was another interview with an elder who said that the brothers were very generous to give of their time and money to Jehovah. (WTBTS)
'Build with fire-resistant materials.'
He had an interview with a brother, who spoke about how he had helped his 2 sons to go to Bethel, and his 1 daughter to pioneer, by teaching them to put spiritual things first.
There was also an interview with an elder who had been baptised 42 years! He was convinced it was the Truth by the 7 times, and 1914. I bet he's never heard of the 586/7 date.
'Always choose the good portion.'
We are SO close to the end. We need to keep on track. SO close. SO very close.
We need to be urgent! And choose Jehovah (WTBTS) who is the good portion!
Another Demo where a brother is offered a new job and turns it down to do more service. Why use this demo twice in the same assembly? Why EVERY assembly? The Governing Body needs someone with a bit more imagination.
See Blondie's excellent review: http://www.jehovahs-witness.com/10/120525/2126926/post.ashx#2126926
Sorry for going off the point a little here, but once we got to Paragraph 9, which was about Malawi, I got so mad I had to leave. I hadn't pre-studied or read Blondie's comments, so I wasn't prepared for it, and it annoyed me so much. I thought I was going to be sick I was so angry. The Society allowed those poor brothers to go through so much, all for a party card, and then refused to allow the Mexican brothers to sing at meetings, or pray, so that they wouldn't lose their buildings. They allowed members in Malawi to die, and praised them for not compromising, but demanded that Mexican members compromise so they wouldn't lose their buildings. They are evil, and anyone who claims otherwise only needs to look at this example. They don't care about us, they only care about money and buildings, and it makes me sick.
'Giving attention to the needs of the circuit.'
I missed the beginning of this talk. It seemed like a major local needs. It was given by the CO.
We were told to do more, and act with urgency.
The CO spent about 10 minutes dealing with the dangers of the Internet. Mostly, we were told to avoid pornography, but chatrooms and apostate sites were given a mention. I guess the Internet must be a problem in our circuit.
He finished by talking about being careful when investing with other brothers. I'm not surprised, since there's been so many cases of brothers screwing more vunerable ones recently.
Sunday Afternoon 'How can you survive Jehovah's day of fury? ' Public Address.
This was the third talk given by our District Overseer.
Jehovah is furious at the wicked ones!
His day, is not a literal day, but means the Great tribulation.
He said the bible describes this day as one of bitterness, distress, anguish and gloom, and that it would be fear-inspiring. But then told us there was no need to be afraid... Seemed pretty terrifying to me.
How do we know it's coming soon? The signs in the bible! He said there were international signs, and personality signs.
For international signs, he didn't use Jesus signs in Matthew and Luke. He used Revelation 6, which I found quite interesting.
He spoke about the four horsemen. Jesus being on the white horse. The fiery-colored horse meaning war, which had 100 million deaths in the 20th Century, to show how close we were. Then, the black horse, famine, which he said had 1 billion starving ones. And the pale horse, all other causes of death. Things like natural disasters, and those wild beasts, who are a real problem in other parts of the world apparently.
For personality, he used the famous 2 Timothy 3:1-5.
Those we preach to have a pre-flood mentality, but the signs prove how close we are!
He then spoke about Revelation 17:8-14, and said we could never understand it without God's holy spirit, given to his appointed channel.
5 world powers had fallen
One was in power: Rome (At time of writing)
One was yet to come: Anglo-America (Current king)
Then an 8th king would come out of that. The UN.
He described the UN as a world government, which even had it's own army! I think he needed to read up on what they actually are.
During this time, the person sitting next to me said 'I think he's going to reveal the last King of the North!' I'm sure you'll all be surprised to hear, that he didn?t.
He pointed to Daniel 12:4. to say, that the very fact we are able to understand these passages is proof that we are in the time of the end. That the end of this system is very close!
Ezekiel 7:19 - Money will become useless at the day of fury. Money can be a distraction from our service to Jehovah (WTBTS)
Laodiceans: They were lukewarm. Will lukewarm ones survive? No! We need to be urgent, as the end is SO close!
Our salvation comes from prayer, study and field service! We would also be judged in 3 main areas. In our speech, conduct and attitude .
Matthew 12: 36, 37 - We'll be judged by how we speak. No swearing! Or ?unclean? speech!
1 Peter 2:12 - We bear Jehovah's name, so we have to stand out. This includes through dress and grooming. No short skirts, or spiky hair! Our salvation depends on it!
Ezekiel 12: 27, 28 - We can't get complacent. When we are told the 'end is near' we shouldn't ever say 'But you've been saying that for years.' We are getting closer, and we must keep our sense of urgency.
Many have lost their sense of urgency, and stopped going to meetings. The DO asked: 'What will happen to them in Jehovah's day of fury?' The answer was found at Luke 21: 34-36. Those who withdraw will be 'ensnared not spared'
Remember, the end is SO close! For the second time this assembly, we were told it might even come tomorrow! (Now yesterday) We can almost reach out and grab it! We must DO MORE to get through it!
Zico, (good name by the way)
Thanks for the time and effort in putting this up it makes me glad I don't need to go. In fact it sounds just like the last CA I was at except at that one they had a big model of the dooms day clock which was like a minute from 12 or something
Wow Zico, I don't know how you can sit through it all. Thanks for your observations though. That poor girl getting baptised on her own! I'm sure that some kids are pushed into it so that there's a reason to give the baptism talk. And that poor girl giving up a running team, she's going to regret that in ten years....
Good job! Thanks! It sounds like they're getting more back to the center of the road again. Maybe they're just visiting the center.
Wow - I am impressed that you did such a complete job on this review.
I must admit I could not read that much of it - a glance at it made it seem just like recycled circuit assembly from 1974, er 1983, ah 1987, er I mean 2004. Oh well, you get the point.
Maybe even tomorrow! Since tomorrow was Monday, this has now passed.
LOL! That really made me laugh!
Hey, can we count that as another failed prophecy!?
Good work Zico
One of a brother in a Central American country where the work is banned, who gave a tract to a guy at a bus stop.
I don't recall any recent bans in Central America. Is it possible, that even if this is a real experience that is is decades old?