The Watchtower Bible and Tract Society represents itself as Christian.
It represents its theology and policies as direct from Jehovah God through his son, Jesus Christ.
Further, the Governing Body of this corporation interposes itself between the Mediator, Jesus, and the rest of Jehovah's (Christian) Witnesses for the purpose of "feeding them (spiritual) food at the proper time.
The official word of Jesus Christ is represented in the Watchtower's policy on blood transfusions.
In 1998 this statement was made:
Jehovah's Witnesses do not accept whole blood, or major components of blood, namely, red blood cells, white blood cells, platelets and plasma. Also they do not accept hemoglobin which is a major part of red blood cells....According to these principles then, Jehovah's Witnesses do not accept a blood substitute which uses hemoglobin taken from a human or animal source." Richard Bailey and Tomonori Ariga of the Hospital Information Services of the WTS 1998
This policy has led to the deaths of faithful Jehovah's Witnesses. Among them, many children who could not be allowed to received blood transfusions which their primary care physicians had declared would save their lives. Oddly, the Watchtower Society expresses pride and admiration in the subsequent deaths of its member children.
The cover of the May 22, 1994 Awake! magazine showing photos of 26 children, with the caption: "Youths Who Put God First." Inside the magazine glorifies Witness children who died supporting WTS policy.
Surely, the Watchtower and its Governing Body would not gleefully embrace the deaths of innocent children forced into martyrdom by their own despairing parents if there was not a preponderance of Bible support for this!
Here is the Jehovah's Witness support:
Acts 15: "It is my judgment, therefore, that we should not make it difficult for the Gentiles who are turning to God" (v. 19). "Instead we should write to them, telling them to abstain from food polluted by idols, from sexual immorality, from the meat of strangled animals and from blood" (v. 20).
This scripture references the fateful decision at the Jerusalem Council of faithful Jewish Christians addressing what obstacles Gentile converts must hurdle to be accepted by them.
It only remains to focus and magnify the last phrase of that scripture concerning the word :BLOOD.
The Book of Acts existed in several versions. To some scribes the conclusion the apostolic council reached appeared strange, and they changed it to make it appear more correct. In the so-called Western texts, then, the apostles reached a different conclusion:
"(b) The Western text omits ‘what is strangled’ and adds a negative form of the Golden Rule in 15.20 and 29. . . . Concerning (b), it is obvious that the threefold prohibition . . . refers to moral injunctions to refrain from idolatry, unchastity and blood-shedding (or murder), to which is added the negative Golden Rule." 1The "western texts" were those used by a significant number of those early Christian writers, and these texts had already replaced the purely ritual rules in the original description of the Apostolic Council with moral rules. Obviously, then, these later copyists were not aware of the background of the blood prohibition, and struggled to understand the text. To make it more acceptable, they "corrected" the text to be a list of three moral laws: idolatry, unchastity and murder. And hardly anyone will deny that these rules apply to all Christians! No wonder, then, that the early Christian writers argued that the apostolic council still applied.
Concerning these texts, we read:"Of the remaining types of texts which Westcott and Hort isolated, the so-called Western Type is both ancient and widespread. . . . Its date of origin must have been extremely early, perhaps before the middle of the second century. Marcion, Tatian, Justin, Irenaeus, Hippolytus, Tertullian and Cyprian all made use to a greater or less extent of a Western form of text." 2http://www.ajwrb.org/history/index.shtml
The Law of the Sons of Noah, (Noahide laws) applied to every person decended from Noah who wished to please God. Later, Jews under the law of Moses used these Noahide Laws to instruct Gentile converts. In these laws the use of the word "blood" referred to murder, the shedding of blood in killing another human.
Jesus, as a Jew, was under the Law of Moses. Jesus, as the exemplar of God's perfect will, demonstrated the purpose of the Law in his ministry on Earth.
Several times Jesus was seen breaking the law of the Sabbath. The Pharisees were outraged. Jesus healed people on the Sabbath--he must be put to death!
Jesus explained to the Pharisees the purpose and intent of the Law by asking them a question:
- LUKE: 6 : 6
- On another sabbath he went into the synagogue and taught, and there was a man there whose right hand was withered.
- The scribes and the Pharisees watched him closely to see if he would cure on the sabbath so that they might discover a reason to accuse him.
- But he realized their intentions and said to the man with the withered hand, "Come up and stand before us." And he rose and stood there.
- Then Jesus said to them, "I ask you, is it lawful to do good on the sabbath rather than to do evil, to save life rather than to destroy it?"
- Looking around at them all, he then said to him, "Stretch out your hand." He did so and his hand was restored.
- But they became enraged and discussed together what they might do to Jesus.
Clearly, Jesus demonstrated the over-riding principle was the precious saving of life even if it meant superficially breaking the Law!
If this applies to Sabbath breaking to bring about healing and preserving of life:
WHY WOULDN'T IT APPLY TO BLOOD as well?
Whether "Blood" prohibition refers to eating the blood of animals or the transfusing of blood in a transfusion (arguably) the same principle demonstrated by Jesus would apply.
LIFE is more precious than law.