The Watchtower Speaks for Itself
On the subject of infallibility...
***w52 3/15 pp.180-181 Are the Popes Infallible?***
Coming now to the conclusion, we read: “Again I say, if you decree the infallibility of the present bishop of Rome, you must establish the infallibility of all the preceding ones, without excluding any; but can you do that when history is there establishing with a clearness equal only to that of the sun, that the popes have erred in their teaching? Could you do it and maintain that avaricious, incestuous, murdering, simoniacal popes have been vicars of Jesus Christ? Oh! venerable brethren, to maintain such an enormity would be to betray Christ worse than Judas!”
Because some say this speech was written by an Augustinian monk instead of by Strossmayer does not reduce its truthfulness in the least. The facts of history remain irrefutable. But if this historical discussion bores you, consider recent events and a current question: Was Pius XII infallible when he proclaimed that the fleshly body of Mary went to heaven? On the very face of it the statement is a lie, for the Catholic Douay Bible says plainly: “Flesh and blood cannot possess the kingdom of God: neither shall corruption possess incorruption.” (1 Cor. 15:50) Other scriptures proving the Assumption Dogma a fallible falsehood appeared in TheWatchtower, January 15, 1951. Not man’s word, but only God’s Word, the Bible, is infallible!—John 17:17.
Regarding his misguided statements as to what we could expect in 1925, he [J.F. Rutherford] once confessed to us at Bethel, “I made an ass of myself.”
Yes, Jehovah provides direction to the slave. We can therefore have full confidence in the Scriptural insight, understanding, and guidance that we receive from the slave.
Hey, I can't say it any clearer than that!
On the subject of cults and idolatrous worship of organizations or men....
Their devotion to a self-proclaimed human leader is likely to be unconditional and exclusive. Often these leaders boast of having been divinely chosen or even of being themselves divine in nature.
***w09 2/15 pp.25-26pars.6-7They“Keep Following theLamb”***
To appreciate the extent of Jehovah’s trust in the faithful slave, reflect on what he has promised its members…The anointed followers of Christ, who serve God faithfully and die in corruptible human bodies, are resurrected as something more than spirit creatures having everlasting life. They are given immortality—endlessness and indestructibility. Moreover, they receive incorruption, being given bodies that are beyond decay and apparently are self-sustaining. Revelation 4:4 describes these resurrected ones as seated upon thrones with golden crowns upon their heads. The glory of royalty awaits anointed Christians. But there is more…Jehovah has chosen the anointed Christians to be the future bride for his Son. Incorruption, immortality, royalty, “the marriage of the Lamb”—what awe-inspiring gifts these are! They are stirring evidence of God’s confidence in the anointed, who “keep following the Lamb no matter where he goes.”
***w80 8/1 pp.19-20par.11 Remain“SolidintheFaith”***
11 Thus the one who doubts to the point of becoming an apostate sets himself up as a judge. He thinks he knows better than his fellow Christians, better also than the “faithful and discreet slave,” through whom he has learned the best part, if not all that he knows about Jehovah God and his purposes. He develops a spiritofindependence, and becomes “proud in heart . . . something detestable to Jehovah.” (Prov. 16:5) Some apostates even think they know better than God, as regards his ordering of events in the outworking of his purposes. Two other causes of apostasy are therefore ingratitude and presumption.
***w80 8/1 p.20 par.16 Remain “Solid in the Faith”***
To avoid falling away from the faith, we also need to guard against ingratitude.We should be thankful for the abundant spiritual food we are receiving through the “faithful and discreet slave.
***w94 2/15 p.6 Are Jehovah’s Witnesses a Cult?***
Outstanding is a recent ruling by the European Court of Human Rights. It declared that the Witnesses should enjoy freedom of thought, conscience, and religion and that they have the right to speak about their faith and teach it to others. This would hardly be the case if Jehovah’s Witnesses were known to use deceptive and unethical techniques to recruit members or if they used manipulative methods to control the minds of their followers.
Multitudes around the world are well acquainted with Jehovah’s Witnesses. Of the millions of non-Witnesses who are studying the Bible with the Witnesses or who have studied with them at one time or another, we ask, Were there any attempts to brainwash you? Did the Witnesses employ mind-control techniques on you? “No” would doubtless be your frank response. Obviously, if these methods had been used, there would be an overwhelming number of victims in contradiction to any argument in favor of Jehovah’s Witnesses.
-- Whoa!! Now that one was really obscene. Now obviously, how many people know about the techniques Jehovah's Witnesses use? The general public if they attended our meetings would see a stark contrast between the material considered there and what is offered to the public. By the way,would any Witness regard "victims" as telling the truth about being victimized by this organization? Or are victims silenced and regarded as satanic liars?
It is precisely because of this close adherence to Bible teachings that the veneration and idolization of human leaders so characteristic of cults today is not to be found among Jehovah’s Witnesses. They reject the concept of a clergy-laity distinction. TheEncyclopediaofReligion aptly states about Jehovah’s Witnesses: “A clergy class and distinctive titles are prohibited.”
They follow Jesus Christ as their Leader and as Head of the Christian congregation. It was Jesus who said: “Do not you be called Rabbi, for one is your teacher, whereas all you are brothers. Moreover, do not call anyone your father on earth, for one is your Father, the heavenly One. Neither be called ‘leaders,’ for your Leader is one, the Christ.”—Matthew 23:8-12.
It is clear that Jehovah’s Witnesses are as far from being a cult as Jesus was from being a glutton and a drunkard.
Hear that, Jesus? They're calling you a drunk glutton!
Clearly, none who put their trust in the God of the Bible could have been taken in by such an extremely wicked man who selfishly, wantonly, exploited his power to influence others, one who so cruelly, grossly and ruthlessly betrayed naïve trust. True Christians are safeguarded from the dire consequences of putting trust in a mere man. God’s Word, the Bible, not only points them to the true religion, but clearly identifies the kinds of religion that are to be avoided, the sectarianism that is usually based on the exaltation of some human leader or man-made cult.
As Christians, we face up to similar challenges today. We cannot take part in any modern version of idolatry—be it worshipful gestures toward an image or symbol or the imputing of salvation to a person or an organization.
Bible students need to get acquainted with the organization of the “one flock” Jesus spoke about at John 10:16. They must appreciate that identifying themselves with Jehovah’s organization is essential to their salvation.
Since Jehovah God and Jesus Christ completely trust the faithful and discreet slave, should we not do the same? After all, the slave has shown itself to be faithful in doing its assigned work. For example, the Watchtower magazine has been published for some 130 years. Meetings, assemblies, and conventions of Jehovah’s Witnesses continue to build us up spiritually.
12 The faithful slave is also discreet in that it neither acts immodestly, running ahead of Jehovah, nor lags behind when God’s direction on a matter is clear. For example, while false religious leaders tacitly approve or openly condone as normal the selfish, godless conduct of the people of the world, the slave provides warnings against the pitfalls of Satan’s wicked system. The slave is able to provide wise and timely warnings because Jehovah God and Jesus Christ are blessing it. The slave thus deserves our complete trust. How, though, can we demonstrate that we trust the faithful and discreet slave?
“My sheep listen to my voice,” said Jesus, “and I know them, and they follow me.” (John 10:27) That is true of the anointed Christians. What about those who “go with” them? Such ones must listen to Jesus. They must also listen to his brothers.
Wow, sorry--the formatting came out very badly...
Good capture sd-7 , I like the one about ingratitude and presumption....I get that all the time !
"This would hardly be the case if Jehovah’s Witnesses were known to use deceptive and unethical techniques to recruit members or if they used manipulative methods to control the minds of their followers."
Rubbish. Many destructive cults opperate freely and without challege from any authority, simply because so few people fully understand what a cult is and, even if they do, how to distinguish a destructive group from a non-destructive group. How the Org can say that they do not use manipulative methods to control their followers is beyond me. The evidence for that is undeniable and overwhelming.
If one of America's leading expects in cults and mind control techniques, with over 30 years spent actively exposing destructive cults and exit counselling (hell, an ex-cult member himself), classifies the Jehovah's Witnesses as a destructive cult, then I think it's more than likely that they are, in fact, a destructive cult!
"Obviously, if these methods had been used, there would be an overwhelming number of victims in contradiction to any argument in favor of Jehovah’s Witnesses. "There are hardly ever an overwhelming number of victims, particularlly vocal victims, of any cult. Mostly because cults are very good at holding onto their members through the use of extremely effective techniques of mind control!
So for the Witnesses to say, "Cults use manipulative methods to control the minds of their followers" and then, "Obviously, if these methods had been used, there would be an overwhelming number of victims in contradiction to any argument in favor of Jehovah’s Witnesses. " is a clear contradiction in itself!
If Witnesses, or any cult, are using effective manipulative methods, then there should not be an overwhelming number of people leaving. There are very, very few destructive cults (if any) that lose a huge number of members without completely imploding or, in the extreme cases, committing mass suicide.
However, I think the sheer number of people on all the various ex-JW forums and websites can attest to the fact that the Witnesses are a group that uses destructive techniques. I've yet to meet and ex-JW that didn't think the Witnesses were a cult. If I didn't know that the Witnesses wrote that article, I would tell author that the clearly knew very little about cults and that the should go away and read 'Combatting Cult Mind Control" by Steven Hassan.
Sorry for all the typos in my post! >___<
Oh, and it hardly needs pointing out, but that article itself is a manipulation. The irony! There is so much inaccurate, misleading information in there and it angers me to think that the Witnesses will just accept it, without reading any books on cults written by actual experts in the field to confirm the accuracy of what they're reading! Another irony is that the Org would disapprove of members reading any 'outside' material on cults!
If it looks like a duck, it quacks like a duck and it waddles like a duck -- It's a duck!
The witlesses do in fact use destructive techniques to recruit. Born ins are basically forced (by parents and older people) to get baptized while young, and then to pio-sneer. Of course, after they are in, they cannot leave without severe consequences including harassment, busting up the family, and having their reputation in the general community ruined.
Those that are recruited in the territory are promised things that would fulfill their own needs. Everyone receives the promise of living forever on a paradise earth, complete with the story of how we became undeserving (which explains why so many things like birthdays and holidays, which are fun and pleasant, are condemned). They also receive promises from the organization or members therein for fulfillment of whatever is deficient, which is always contingent on taking just the next step (and advanced when that step is taken). Once the victim is baptized, the promises vanish and the hounding begins. You have agreed to obey the Filthful and Disgraceful Slavebugger, even if they change the rules after the fact. Anyone trying to dissuade the new recruit on the grounds that the rules can change at any time or that independent research is banned is "apostate". Also, anyone that points out that, if the Filthful and Disgraceful Slavebugger puts out a bad teaching, you will have to believe and TEACH the bad teaching until they change it themselves even if you can prove it wrong from their own Bible is viewed as apostate.
Generation strings, anyone?
I wonder, in this non-manipulative organization with few victims, just HOW many ex-JWs/inactive JWs there are compared to the total Witness population?
How exactly do you explain the fact that the WT has such a high (if not THE highest) turnover rate?