thank you for your post asking me whether I think all Witnesses are selfish. Let me just say that, I hope I didn't offend you in any way. My opinion is just that, isn't it - an opinion. It should have as much credence put by it as Miracle Wheat!
Having said that, in that derided opinion, I am going to go out on a limb, and say (please don't be offended, it's just my opinion) I personally beleive that the vast vast majority of JW are as selfish and materialistic as the people they condemn. I can't see how the words of Romans do not apply to them? Paul said that "there is no-one that searches for God" - and he was talking about the "believing" good jews and greeks, indeed, every single christian of his day. The impact of that isn't and wasn't lost on me at the time - there is no-one if you believe the Bible, that serves God perfectly out of altrusitic unselfish motives. Take me as an example. I believe in God, and the Bible, very strongly. But why? Yes, it might all be true (again, my opinion), but isn't also true that it gives me some strengthand stability, black and white guidance in a world where I see shifting moral values, inconsistency, hypocrisy. and modernism? Is it not equally true that believing in God, is for me, a security blanket? Let me just say, if that is the case, there is nothing wrong with that, and it does not mean that God is not real, or the Bible is not true - but one thing I learnt at Bethel, and as I read the Bible, was to stop putting a positive candyfloss spin on my own emotions and motivations - either the whole bible applies to me, including it's condemnation of my nature and my works (isaiah 43, whree it says all our good works are like a used sanitary towel), and motives thereof, or I can be a Witness and just apply the bits i wanted, especially to make myself feel better.
When I look at the Watchtower, how many times is Paradise mentioned, compared to occurences in the Bible? Every issue, pictures of the utopia. Why? Someone on here rightly said that it is not wrong to want those things that God provided - and I agree, of course. But if that is the motivation, then I think it should not be hidden. Let's just be honest. People say, but I serve Jehovah now, and do all I do because I love him. Well, I am sure that there are some who do. But I have seen too many lectures by the GB at Bethel, and heard too many talks, and done too many shepherding visits, to believe it is true of the majority. I agree with Paul in Romans 3. I simply ask this
If tmw, the GB said, we have got things wrong, and published a WT saying - there will be no paradise, all that there is, is this life, and what ou make of it - how many people would spend their time as a pioneer? If the WT published a WT saying, Jehovah wants us to pioneer and simply tell people about Armageddon, and that everyne will die - how many would do that? If they said - ecery single witness must live up to the moral standards, and must "be perfect" as Jesus said, how many would keep that up? How many would "slow down", if they were told that the utopia was a fantasy(Im not saying it is, im just theorising)? How many would go out preaching, if they didn't have to? How many would make the sacrifices and face the challenges they do, and be as strict as to thier life choices and higher education and meeting attendance and all the myraid rules and regulations of the modern talmud of the WT, and bible reading, and increased preaching activity, and obedience? Some would - but for how long? How long before their love cools off? How long before they are tied up in other concerns? I think Jesus words would be apt - "When the Son of Man arrives, will he really find the faith on the earth?" I don;t think he asked those words with a cheeky smile to himself.
Please understand, I am not condemning anyone, or trying to be like some self-righteous pharisee, or anything. I am very very selfish, inherently. I happen to think we all are, when it comes to the crunch. And my personal belief is that Romans 3 applies to religious people, as Paul intended it to - we are serving God, but because of rewards, stability, security - and I think that applies to JW's too. I don't think they are exempt at all. I see no nobility of nature, no soaring aspiration to make everyone's lives better. I see an organisation that preaches selfishness - "We are going to paradise, God says we must preach, come to paradise with us, but you will only get there if you keep preaching". Hardly any mention of the facts that the Bible teaches about how "wicked and selfish" we all are. (Sorry if anyone doesn't beleive in the Bible, I'm just explaining my views from a Biblical view, that's all)
I'm sure I'm wrong, that there are some people who love God, and serve him purely out of love for him. But I happen to think they are so few and far between, and are spoken of as the sons of the kingdom. Apart from that, I'm sorry to say that I really do believe that the vast majority of JW are as selfish and materialistic as everyone else.
If the tone of this comes across as some ridiculous lecture, or harsh or anything, please forgive me - I said some time ago, I'm not a very good writer, and I'm just throwing my thoughts on paper - please don;t feel this is an attack on any position, any belief, and any person. It's just my opinion - and although I had so many Bible verses I wanted to put in, I'm not sure of this being the right place to do it - some people here are atheists and agnostics, and I don't want to ram my beliefs down their throats. Why should they have to put up with that? They have understandably had enough of God, the Bible and religion, and I don;t want to make them feel uncomfortable. If I have offended anyone at all, in any way, I am very sorry. I hope you will forgive a fool.