The Watchtower, May 1, 1975, said of a Watchtower Bible School of Gilead graduation held on March 2, 1975: (Italics added)
Another speaker, F. W. Franz, the Society's vice- president, forcefully impressed on the audience the urgency of the Christian preaching work. He stressed that, according to dependable Bible chronology, 6,000 years of human history will end this coming September according to the lunar calendar. This coincides with a time when "the human species [is] about to starve itself to death," as well as its being faced with poisoning by pollution and destruction by nuclear weapons. Franz added: "There's no basis for believing that mankind, faced with what it now faces, can exist for the seventh thousand-year period" under the present system of things.
Does this mean that we know exactly when God will destroy this old system and establish a new one? Franz showed that we do not, for we do not know how short was the time interval between Adam's creation and the creation of Eve, at which point God's rest day of seven thousand years began. (Heb. 4:3,4) But, he pointed out, "we should not think that this year of 1975 is of no significance to us," for the Bible proves that Jehovah is "the greatest chronologist" and "we have the anchor date, 1914, marking the end of the Gentile Times." So, he continued, "we are filled with anticipation for the near future, for our generation."
*** Studies in the Scriptures Vol. 2, 1906 ***
Six Thousand years from the creation of Adam were complete in A.D. 1872, and hence that since A.D. 1872, we chronologically entered upon the seventh thousand or the Millenium.
Wiggle room is needed in every absolute statement to allow the absolutist a way out of their ridiculous impropriety.
In the early years of the Watchtower the absolute statements were constantly revised as they wore out. Fudging and outright dishonesty gave the wiggle room necessary to maintain the illusion that the predictor of events could not be wrong.
Compare, for example, these two statements for content and observe the changes made.
*** The Time Is at Hand, page ii, (forward) 1916 ***
The Bible chronology herein presented shows that the six great 1000 year days beginning with Adam are ended, and that the great 7th Day, the 1000 years of Christ's Reign, began in 1873.
See any difference? Oh, just one year? No big deal, right?
The 1986 book, Worldwide Security Under the “Prince of Peace” starting on p. 182, indicates that Satan’s final test upon mankind arrives at a time when “Seven thousand years previously, Satan the Devil was able to induce the perfect Adam and Eve to sin by taking a self-seeking course of action.”
This was the last time the Watchtower Society even alluded to the creation day being 7000 years long. This teaching has never been denied outright, but; is not considered to be worth promoting anymore.
Right after 1975 came and went without Armageddon the fallback (wiggle room) position was that there was an unknown interval between Adam's creation and that of Eve herself. This unknown time period would account for the seeming pause between 1975 and the beginning of the 7th day (set up by the Watchtower to correspond with the 1,000 year reign of Christ).
This "creation of Eve" theory died abourning and hasn't been mention in a long, long time. It floats in a kind of doctrinal limbo along with the 7,000 year creation day.
Older members who have long been faithful can hang on to these beliefs and feel not much has changed. New members aren't exposed to these teaching because they are too vulnerable to falsifiability.
*** The Time Is at Hand, page ii, (forward) 1916 ***
The Bible chronology herein presented shows that the six great 1000 year days beginning with Adam are ended, and that the great 7th Day, the 1000 years of Christ’s Reign, began in 1873.
The above is, of course, incompatible with subsequent events and must be largely ignored. The generation of Jehovah's Witnesses who believed these things has long died off and aren't here to complain.
There is no mechanism of complaint in the first place! Nobody can stand up at then end of the Watchtower Study and proclaim:
"I've been reading the Watchtower magazine as food at the proper time since I was a small child and I was wondering what happened to the 6,000 years of human existence doctrine and the interval between Adam's creation and that of Eve. Why don't we hear anything about it anymore? What gives??"
It would be silly to think Adam has been walking around the Garden of Eden since 1975 (in a metaphoric parallel) and remains celibate for 31 years without a mate!
Shouldn't this be a headline in a Watchtower somewhere with a big clock ticking? "ADAM STILL WAITS FOR WIFE!"
Or has the wiggle gone out of the room?
Volume II of Studies in the Scriptures, entitled The Time is at Hand announces, "that six thousand years from the creation of Adam were complete with A.D. 1872." (It also predicts) Battle of Armageddon, "will end in A.D. 1914 with the complete overthrow of earth's present rulership" (pp. 76-77, 99, 101). [see 1894, 1914, and 1968]
Chapter 7 of Let God Be True (1946) says that each of the seven days of creation was 7,000 years long.
2 editions of Let God Be True (1946; 1952) in the chapter The Sabbath: In Shadow and Reality.Man being created toward the close of the sixth day, he was put on earth toward the end of 42,000 years of earth's preparation. (p. 155)God's "seventh day" of rest continues 7000 years. (p. 165)
Also the 1,000 year reign of Christ (the Millennium) corresponds to the last 1,000 years of the 7,000 years of God's rest. (pp. 167-169) So when did the 7,000 years of rest begin?
On page 165 ( it is claimed that) the 7,000 year rest, "began applying over 4,000 years before Christ."
(Ignoring the minor question of there being no year "0") it follows that 6,000 years will be completed by or before 6,000 - 4000 = 2000 AD.
Page 166 says that the 1,000 year reign of Christ will start "immediately" after Armageddon. Therefore Armageddon will also have to be over by/before 2000 AD.
Further, this dovetails into the collapse (the utter failure!) of the rock-solid doctrine of "this generation" being people old enough to witness the events of 1914 who would "never die" before Armageddon took place.
Even if we presume that youngsters 15 years of age would be perceptive enough to realize the import of what happened in 1914, it would still make the youngest of "this generation" nearly 70 years old today.
(Awake! 1968 October 8 p. 13-14)
This doctrine and prophecy was taught as "the Creator's promise". From January 1982 Awake! magazine had the claim:Most importantly, this magazine builds confidence in the Creator's promise of a peaceful and secure new order before the generation that saw the events of 1914 C.E. passes away.In 1995 this promise was revised to:Most important, this magazine builds confidence in the Creator's promise of a peaceful and secure new world that is about to replace the present wicked, lawless system of things.In discussing this revision The Watchtower said:
(Awake! 1995 November 8)Does our more precise viewpoint on "this generation" mean that Armageddon is further away than we had thought? Not at all! ( 1995 November 1 p. 20)
Outrageous ducking and weaving followed by flip-flopping ending in outright bald-faced lying!
Clearly the leaders of Jehovah's Witnesses do NOT understand their own beliefs and are confused about the "meaning" of scriptures. Yet, what do they claim about themselves???(JW leaders claim that their organization is), "the only organization on earth that understands the 'deep things of God'!" (The Watchtower 1973 July 1 p. 402)The Watchtower of 1931:The Watchtower recognizes the truth as belonging to Jehovah, and not to any creature. The Watchtower is not the instrument of any man or set of men. No man's opinion is expressed in The Watchtower. God feeds his own people, and surely God uses those who love and serve him according to his own will. (November 1 p. 327)The Watchtower (1943 July 1 p. 202) says: "Jehovah God is therefore the only Supreme Court of interpretation of His inspired word." The subsequent page adds:To such remnant of faithful servants of Jehovah God Christ Jesus has entrusted all "his goods", or earthly interests of the Kingdom. This does not signify that the faithful remnant or society of Jehovah's anointed witnesses are an earthly tribunal of interpretation, delegated to interpret the Scriptures and its prophecies. No; Christ Jesus the King has not entrusted that office to them. THE SUPREME COURT STILL INTERPRETS, thank God; and Christ Jesus, the Court's official mouthpiece of interpretation, reserves to himself that office as head of Jehovah's "faithful and wise servant" class. He merely uses the "servant" class to publish the interpretation after the Supreme Court by Christ Jesus reveals it. (p. 203)
So, we may well have to scratch our head and ask who made the awful mistake of pinpointing the "This Generation" doctrine as applying to persons alive to witness events in 1914??Jehovah's prophetic word through Christ Jesus is: "This generation [of 1914] will by no means pass away until all things occur." (Luke 21:32) And Jehovah, who is the source of inspired and unfailing prophecy, will bring about the fulfillment...
(The Watchtower 1984 May 15 pp. 6-7)
Ahhh, the Watchtower Society is not responsible because they lay the blame on Jehovah instead!!!!
Isn't Wiggle Room wonderful???
(Excellent resource pages: http://www.jwfiles.com/2000ad.htm )