Response from the Society
I posted a while back with a copy of the letter that I sent to the society. Its at : http://www.geocities.com/lovelight75/socletter.htm
Here is the response. Dates etc are omitted. What do you think of their arguments?
Dear Sister XXXX
We are pleased to respond to your letter of (date). Please accept our apology for our unusually long delay in replying. You ask for our comments regarding a number of scriptural questions that you say have troubled you for some time. The first several questions deal with the New World Translation.
You ask about the propriety of including the name "Jehovah" in the Christian Greek Scriptures. George Howard, of the University of Georgia, carefully researched the matter of whether the name Jehovah ever appeared in the original manuscripts of the Greek Scriptures, and his findings were published in the highly respected Journal of Biblical Literature, Volume 96/1 (1977), pages 63 to 83. We are enclosing a photocopy of this article "The Name of God in the New Testament," from Biblical Archaeology Review Magazine, March 1978, pages 12 to 14, 56, which summarizes the very technical and copiously documented article in the Journal. Note on Page 14, column 2, he draws the conclusion that "toward the end of the first Christian century, the use of surrogates (kyrios and theos) and their contractions must have crowded out the Hebrew tetragrammaton in both testaments." Also, note the enclosed comments of Baptist language scholar William Carey Taylor in The New Bible Pro and Con, a review of the Revised Standard Version, pages 70 to 75.- For further clarification, we encourage you to study carefully appendixes 1C and 1D of the New World Translation of the Holy Scriptures-With References, pages 1562 to 1565, and Insight on the Scriptures, Volume 2, pages 5 to 13.
The New World Translation's rendering of 1 Peter 3:15 prompts your second question. You ask why it states, "sanctify the Christ as Lord in your hearts," since you believe that the apostle was quoting from Isaiah 8:13, which uses the Tetragrammaton. While Peter may have had in mind the principle of Isaiah 8:13 when penning this verse, he was not clearly making a direct quotation as he was from Isaiah 8:12, the previous verse. Isaiah 8:13 reads: "Jehovah of armies-he is the One whom you should treat as holy,and he shold be the object of your fear, and he should be the One causing you to tremble." When Peter wrote that Christians were to "sanctify the Christ as Lord in [their] hearts" he was reminding them to accord Jesus the greatest respect by assigning him a sacred place in their hearts as their personal "Lord," or Master. Hence, they were not "sanctifying the Christ as Jehovah," or declaring that Christ was Jehovah. This is clear from the apostle Paul's words at Romans 10:9: "If you publicly declare that 'word in your own mouth,' that Jesus is Lord, and excersize faith in your heart that God raised him up from the dead, you will be saved." Certainly, God, who raised the Lord Jesus up from the dead, is not the same person as the "Lord" whom he raised up.-1 Corinthians 8:6.
The apostle Peter, however, was using the principle at Isaiah 8:13, namely, that God's people should not fear their enemies but treat as holy Jehovah God. Peter was taking this basic principle and applying it to a Christian's attitude towards Jesus as his Exemplar when faced with persecution. Obviously, a Christian would treat as holy, or sanctify, both Jehovah and Jesus. Since even Jehovah had sanctified Jesus, how fitting that Jesus' followers likewise do so. (John 10:36) The following verses in 1 Peter chapter 3 draw attention to the example that Christ set in suffering for the will of God, and finally, Peter says Jesus is seated "at God's right hand," clearly showing him to be distinct from his father. (Psalm 110:1; Matthew 22:43-46; 1 Peter 3:16-18,22) For these reasons the New World Translation does not put "Jehovah" for "Lord" at 1 Peter 3.:15.
Concerning the use of the word "other" at Colossians 1:15-20, we refer you to the enclosed photocopies of pages 28 and 29 from the September 8, 1964, issue of Awake!-1 Corinthians 15:27,28.
Most of the other issues you raise have been discussed at length in our publications. Surely you are aware of the increasing light that comes from a continued study of God's Word. As to our view of the celebration of Birthdays, we encourage you to read what was published under "Questions from Readers" in the October 15,1998, issue of the Watchtower, pages 30 and 31. Concerning the scriptural viewpoint of minor blood components, you will find a thorough discussion in the June 15, 2000, issue of the Watchtower on pages 29 to 31.
We trust that the comments of our letter will be helpful. Prayerfully consider what we have said. At the same time, we urge you to consider just who today are truly doing the will of God and showing the identifying marks of genuine Christianity.-John 13:35; 1 John 3:10-12; See enclosed photocopies of Britain's Catholic Herald, page 4; The New York Times Book Review of January 28, 1996, page 28; Ideology of Death, by John Weiss, pages 313 and 314; German-language printout fromthe Swiss Evangelical Reform Churh's 1997 Reformierte Presse, December 8, 1998, with English translation.
With our letter we send our Christian love and best wishes.
Your brothers in Jehovah's service,
Watchtower bible and tract society of New York
Please accept our apology for our unusually long delay in replying.
we urge you to consider just who today are truly doing the will of God and showing the identifying marks of genuine Christianity.Does this include fornicating with the wild beast?
Watchtower, I'm looking forward to your destruction. Lying bastards. Family destroyers
It is not possible to carry on a discussion with those who write the doctrines. At the very best you will be directed to 'the publications' and the message therein. How does one argue with a printed article?
Time doesn't allow me to write too long, I'm sorry, but I'd suggest an excellent publication that may help you. It's obtainable from Randy Watters at www.freeminds.org and is called Refuting Jehovah's Witnesses. On these matters it's good to hear from "someone who knows" i.e. an ex-JDub, which Randy is. I find this book most helpful on refuting the Dubs doctrines from the Bible.
I noted two expressions in the Society letter that bear commenting upon, namely
Most of the other issues you raise have been discussed at length in our publications. Surely you are aware of the increasing light that comes from a continued study of God's Word.
Prayerfully consider what we have said. At the same time, we urge you to consider just who today are truly doing the will of God and showing the identifying marks of genuine Christianity.This amounts to pressure to conform by using this paternalistic, sneering speech. Presumably the argument about increasing light (of Truth) can be used by the WTS to defend any position it's forced to defend.
It was good of you to share this on the board and I'd encourage you to do as the letter says "Prayerfully consider" their response.
"It's better to light a candle than to curse the darkness."
yada yada yada the truth answered the questions with sense but u still are bitter demonic humans its sad that u hate the truth but soon jehovah will send a fire ball with your name on it cheers
Its been a while since this letter arrived, but recently I got it out again and re-read it including the attachments.
I wondered if I'd read it differently when my general angry attitude had died down a bit!
Anyway, their response still doesnt make a lot of sense to me. Firstly, no matter how much speculating is done, there are no New Testament manuscripts in existance that contain the name Jehovah. The document they refer to simply states what "could" have happened. It doesnt make sense to me that by the time the Christians wrote the bible, they omitted the Tetragrammaton despite the fact that it was apparently so important. The argument that they now used "lord" or "Jesus" due to their belief in the deity of Christ makes more sense to me.
With regard to Peter, the society seem to insinuate that I thought that the apostles would declare Christ as Jehovah. No, I simply think that they saw the OT being fulfilled in Christ - hence they refer to scriptures in the OT which are referring to Jehovah God and applying it to Jesus christ. They then use the old argument that God could not have raised Christ if they were one and the same, but with understanding of the Trinity doctrine this idea could be overthrown.
My main point with the 1 Peter reference was that the New World Translation was not being consistent. They translate Jehovah in the New Testament when the NT is referring to a scripture in the OT, except in 1 Peter 3:15 they do not follow this rule because its too difficult to swap around to look like "Jehovah" instead of Jesus. In scriptures where they can get away with putting "Jehovah" instead of Jesus, they do.
Actually, I dont believe the Trinity, but then again I dont necessarily believe in Jesus as saviour either.
typical answer from someone influenced by the world sad soul u say jesus is not the saviuor even tho the bibles says so so all that extra crapola you spew means nothin but demonic proclamations have fun
You are uptight eh? (giggles) If you have any comments or scriptural proof of the deity of Jesus Christ, or that he is the saviour, I would be grateful. Or in fact if you have any constructive comment, I'd be amazed.
Having studied the bible for most of my life, I think I am able to form my own opinions. I suspect that forming your own opinions is not something you are familiar with!
(grins to herself and says "wow, these crazy fundies!"
OPINONS OH WOW THEY ARE LIKE RUMP HOLES EVERYONE HAS ONE IF U SOCALLED READ THE BIBLE ALL YOUR LIFE U WOULD NEED NO OPINONS U WOULD HAVE TRUTH BUT SENSE U PERMEATE WITH THE KNOWLEDG OF THE WORLD FOOLISHNESS OF MAN IM NOT SUPRISED BUT THE FACT IS IF GOD IS NOT SASTISFIED WITH YOUR OPINION ITS VOID AND U MIGHT AS WELL BE A PAGAN OF SATAN HE ONLY WANTS TRUTH
To "malcomx": I think your comments are inappropriate. Sirona has every right to ponder serious questions and and express her views. She has a right to question certain teachings. We all have that right. To write such comments as "jehovah will send a fire ball with your name on it" is irresponsible to say the least. What makes you so sure that there's not a fireball up there with your name on it? And yes, I ask myself the same question, so don't worry.
People are not going to be won over by threats. The "truth" (whatever truth is out there) should appeal to the heart. It is not meant to be a club used to beat people.
It continues to amaze me (though, maybe I should not be amazed) that the ones who post the most fear-mongering, threatening, and judgemental messages on this site are those who claim to support Jehovah's Witnesses.