May you all have peace!
A little while ago a dear one referred to my trip to "Bethel" and discussion with Carey Barber. Apparently, that reference peaked someone's interest and they contacted me for more information. As we discussed that event, we also discussed my letter to the WTBTS regarding their erroneous teaching about the "separation work," the contents of which turned up in one of the October 1995 WTs. The interested person has asked that I recount the circumstances of that event and I have agreed. What occurred was this:
The time was February 1994, and I was attending the DC with my family. Until that time, the WTBTS taught that the "separating of the sheep and goats" had begun in 1914 and was continuing until the present day. That subject was the topic of the... now, what do they call that... "keynote address" I think. The "brother" who was giving the talk was reading from the outline that the WTBTS had prepared and at some point he reiterated the belief that the "separating work" was underway. He then read Matthew 25:31-46, particularly verses 31 and 32, which state:
"But when the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit upon his glorious throne. All the nations will be gathered in his presence, and he will separate them as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats."
No big deal, right? Well, not quite. When he finished verse 46 he said something like "We are now in the midst of this work," to which the audience all applauded. Except me. I didn't applaud because just then I heard a voice say to me, "That is not accurate. Read it again." And so, I did. But I couldn't "see" anything wrong with the account. The voice again said to me, "Read it again." And I did. Then the voice told me to read Matthew 24:29-31. And I did. And I thought, okkaayyy... what am I missing? And the voice ask me how it could be that Christ had arrived and began separating the sheep from the goats now... BEFORE the "great tribulation"... when he does not even return to gather his chosen ones until AFTER that tribulation? The voice then directed me to 8 or 9 other verses that prove the work could NOT be occurring, yet.
I remember thinking, as Miz Silvie said, "Well, I'll be..." (what was that word you used, Miz Silvie, "swoped"?)
I immediately turned to my ex and said, "Oh my gosh, they've got it wrong... the separating work CAN'T be happening now!" And I explained what I heard... and that I had in fact heard a voice tell me this. I then told him that I had to go and tell "them." His response, of course, was "You can't go tell them that! What are you THINKING?!!" Then he shushed me and told me to be quiet. Well, you all know me by now, so that didn't work. tried to get up, but he wouldn't let me at first... and blocked my way. I eventually got past him, though, and went to find the speaker. I mean, I was thinking that this was big. HUGE.
When I arrived downstairs (we were at the Cow Palace in Burlingame, CA), I had to wait for the speaker to come out. When he did, I was SO excited! Dumb me, I thought "Oh, they're gonna wanna here this, so they can change it, make it right"... yada, yada, yada. Well, the speaker wasn't quite as excited about it as I was. He first said, "Well, I read it straight from the outline, so it must be right." But when I showed him the verses given me HE said, "You know, I almost couldn't read that part. It was like something was stopping me. When I tried to start, I almost couldn't speak. Something just wasn't quite right to me. But that's what it says, and I had to read it as it was written in the outline."
I then told him, "But it's not the TRUTH! Aren't you supposed to tell the friends what's TRUE?" He got quiet and looked at me for a few seconds and then said, "Well, if it's bothering you that much, why don't you write to the Society and see what they say?"
And so I did. I wrote them in March of 1994. And I did one of the briefest letters I'd ever written to them, two and a-half pages, the second page of which was a two-column chart showing the corresponding verses that had been given me showing that work COULDN'T be occurring yet. Unfortunately, I didn't hear a thing back... for close to a year. This was a bit disturbing to me because I usually got a fairly quick response ("Wait on Jehovah"... "talk to your CO"... and even "We don't agree..."). True, some letters weren't answered directly, but all of a sudden a question I'd raised would show up in a WT article... along with "new light." I figured, well, they must have gotten the information from the Holy Spirit and so my question was "answered." Two letters, however, were never answered - one, regarding why there were "two laws" between the "anointed" and the "great crowd"... and one regarding how it is that a person's blood... which even they admit has no redeeming value... can "pay" for one's sins.
So, I was beginning to believe that this one wouldn't be either. And then... 11 months later in February 1995... I received a letter apologizing for the delay in response and asking me to be "patient," that "perhaps something regarding this matter will appear in a future WT publication." Well, you can guess I was pretty excited - "something" was coming. WHOO-HOO! And it did come. In the October (oh, shoot, I now can't remember if it was the 1st or the 15th, it's been so long!) WT... there was article about this very matter! And what was more... THERE WAS MY CHART!! Seriously. In the exact format as I had created it in my letter! In all of its glory! WHOO-HOO... I thought.
Well, I went to the KH for whatever next meeting and who greets me at the door? The "brother" who was the speaker at that DC. Yep, he was now my PO!! He came up to me and asked, "Have you seen the new WT?" And I said, "Yes, I have. Isn't 'Jehovah' wonderful?!" He then asked me if I had ever written the "Society" before... and I said that I had. He asked me if I had copies of my letters and their responses. I said I did. He asked if he could read them. I said he most certainly could... and gave them to him. He kept them for 2 months.
When he gave them back he said, "These are very interesting." After that, however, he began to avoid me. And, no, I don't think he did so because HE had a problem with me (indeed, he said, at one of my 14 JD meetings, "Jehovah's going to judge us for this"). No, I think he was directed to avoid me. I think he shared my letters... and the WT responses... with someone, perhaps a CO, even... or some "respected elder" from another congregation. And I was beginning to be "marked."
At any rate, the Voice began to speak to me more often. But I didn't know who or what it was... and didn't share what I heard. I thought, okay, they (the "Society") don't get it... yet. But they will. In the meantime, I'll just "wait on Jehovah." And then one day the Voice called my name. And after a bit of back and forth, I answered. Shortly after that, "it" sent me to Bethel to meet with Carey Barber (or whichever GB member was available) to get a response to my letter about how it is that a person's blood can "pay" for such one's sins... which, if true, meant no one needed Christ's blood. I thought I was sent because perhaps they hadn't actually received the letter, and so I took a copy with me. I found out when I got there that they certainly had... AND understood what it was saying... AND... really hoped I wouldn't tell anyone else. I also found out that, per Mr. Barber, "the Governing Body hasn't had ANYTHING to do with the Watchtower or Awake since 1972... when we turned it over to the 'Joshua' class in anticipation of 1975. We TOLD everyone that, in the video.* If people would just watch the video, they would KNOW where the information comes from!"
Well, the sister who went with me and I watched the video. It looped on a monitor in the Headquarters lobby. And it absolutely DOES say where they get the information... and it ISN'T from the anointed, the GB, the Society, or anyone like that. It comes from a file cabinet... one of many, many files cabinets... in a room overseen by the Writing Committee. Various YOUNG men simply peel through the files... and find whatever information is in there on the subject given them (most, from previous WTs or other WTBTS publications)... and write an article. Then, someone else checks it for SPELLING ERRORS... then artwork is added... and VOILA! You have a WT article!
Anyway, as I said, I was asked to post this and I have. To the dear one who asked... may JAH bless! May the undeserved kindness and mercy of my God and Father, the Most Holy One of Israel, whose name is JAH... of Armies... and the love and peace of His Son and Christ, the Holy Spirit and Holy One of Israel, my Lord, JAHESHUA MISCHAJAH... be upon you... and your entire household!
YOUR servant and a slave of Christ,
*The first VHS video put out by the WTBTS. Note, you have to look/listen really HARD... because they tell you in all of, what, 5 seconds or less...