Yet Another Generation: What Have JW's EVER Got Right? (a Public Service Announcement)

by AllTimeJeff 35 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • willyloman

    If I were still a dub, this latest "light" would be incredibly embarrassing.

    The further away I get the happier I am that I left.

  • littlebird

    I totally agree Restrangled.

    I was reading one of the charts yesterday and realized they used the same b.s wording from the beginning as they do today. Key phrases like, the evidence is, the bible teaches, the facts are, blah, blah, blah. I used to think power got to them as the years went by, or that they didn't know they were deceiving people, but now I see they were manipulating and scaming from the beginning. I've got to find that chart again so I can print it. It just makes me so angry!

  • neverendingjourney

    The "generation" teaching made sense in the 1950s or so because it is generally understood that the term encompasses a relatively short period of time. My "generation" includes everyone who can reasonably be said to be my contemporary. In America you have the WWI generation, the WWII generation, the baby boomers, Gen X, Gen Y, etc. I'm 30 years old. I'm not part of the baby-boom generation. That's my father's generation. Nor am I part of my 3 year old niece's generation. That concept is simple and easy to understand. Furthermore, it went hand-in-hand with the 1st century parallel where some 37 years passed between Jesus's declaration that "this generation shall not pass" and the fulfillment of the prophecy in 70 A.D.

    The WT started running into problems as the years went by. Instead of scrapping the teaching, they modified it. They began drifting away from the common-use of the word "generation" by saying that everyone who was old enough to comprehend the sign of times was part of the 1914 generation and would not pass away before Armageddon's arrival. Using Psalms 90:10 as authority, they said a generation was 70 or 80 years. This was vague enough to where individual JWs could not pinpoint a specific year, but if a child had to be 10 years old to appreciate the events of 1914, that child would turn 80 in 1974, an implied deadline for Armageddon. This teaching happened to coincide nicely with the 1975 hysteria.

    After the 1975 fiasco, the WT once again fell back to the "generation" teaching as its principal fear-mongering tool. This time, the generation became anyone alive during 1914. Therefore, a newborn child in 1914 would turn 80 in 1994...surely the end could not go on much longer. This was the version of the generation teaching I was taught as a child. I knew of no other prior incarnations until I left the religion. Conveniently, "new light" was unveiled in 1995, one year the implied deadline. As we all know, the Watchtower has been making a mockery of the "generation" doctrine ever since. Instead of scrapping the whole concept an starting over, they stubbornly cling on to their failed prediction.

    Here's the problem in a nutshell: either a generation is a fixed group of people living during a short period of time, or the "generation" doesn't mean a "generation" at all, but something completely different altogether. They can no longer argue for the common-use understanding of the term generation because 1914 was 96 years ago. Therefore, they've decided to argue that "this generation" means something completely different: a class of heaven-bound Christians (a class of Christians peculiar to JWism) who have spanned the centuries from their initial appearance in 33 A.D. through the present time.

    The problem with defining "this generation" to mean the anointed is that it takes away the urgency of the plain-meaning definition. It's hard to tie the generation prophecy to any deadline if the generation means a group of people who have been around nearly 2,000 years. Therefore, they've pulled this newest "understanding" out of the air and said that evidently there would be an overlap between those anointed who saw 1914 and those who see the great tribulation. Now, how in the hell can anyone honestly say that the context allows for this interpretation? They've simply pulled this out of their asses to combine the sense or urgency provided from the prior, plain-meaning understanding of generation with the necessary open-endedness of their new understanding.

    It's almost as if the Society is saying: "Hey, we know we screwed up. You know we screwed up. That much is obvious. The generation that saw 1914 has come and gone. We have no choice but to change things up, but don't you think for one second that this change means that the end is far off. No, sir. The end is just as imminent as it was before. Even though we screwed up with this whole generation thing, we still expect you to believe that Jesus's words mean that the end is just around the corner. Now get back to peddling magazines before you start to have to have enough time on your hands to ponder the absurdity of it all"

  • AK - Jeff
    AK - Jeff
    Desperation is never pretty......

    That about sums it up.


  • wha happened?
    wha happened?

    Main Entry: ev·i·dent·ly Pronunciation: \ ' e-v?-d?nt-le, -?- ? dent-, especially for 2 often ? ev-?- ' dent-\ Function: adverb Date: 1609

    1: in an evident manner :clearly, obviously <any style…so evidently bad or second-rate — T. S. Eliot>
    2: on the basis of available evidence <he was born…evidently in Texas — Robert Coughlan>

    I hate when these weasal words are used. It sounds so official to a JW but it's just a weasal word that allows for the writer to back out when his info is wrong. Didn't someone have a video on weasal words the WT uses?

  • wha happened?
    wha happened?

    But I do agree that the WT is holding on to 1914 for dear life. It's really quite sad. I may question a local JW on this new thought. How long has this article been out?

  • blondie

    The 1942 assertion by the WTS is what got me onto the UN site and found that the UN was for in January 1, 1942, long before Knorr's talk the following summer. It also led me to discover that the WTS was an NGO associated with the UN about the same time this information was posted on JWD.

    The name "United Nations", coined by United States President Franklin D. Roosevelt, was first used in the "Declaration by United Nations" of 1 January 1942, during the Second World War, when representatives of 26 nations pledged their Governments to continue fighting together against the Axis Powers.

    Knorr's talk was not given until September 1942, a full eight months after this information was public news.

  • paul from cleveland
    paul from cleveland

    I don't understand the difference between the 2008 explaination and this new one.

  • neverendingjourney
    I don't understand the difference between the 2008 explaination and this new one.

    The same meaning is still in effect. The difference is that they have added a new wrinkle to it by saying that the lives of the anointed who saw 1914 will overlap with those anointed who see the start of the great tribulation, evidently. This means that the period of time between 1914 and Armageddon is limited to the amount of time in which the lives of those anointed alive in 1914 overlap with the lives of the anointed who see the start of the great tribulation.

    For example, an anointed born in 1914 could theoretically live 110 years. He would die in in 2024. An anointed could be born in 2023 and live another 110 years bringing the new presumed deadline for the great tribulation to 2133, evidently.

  • Cadellin

    I think these are all cogent comments, but I can't escape the feeling that another shoe needs to drop. I have no idea why.

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