Wanted to bump this up for any who wanted to comment or have had experiences with JW relatives explaining the " generation overlap" to them
Have your JW Relatives Explained about Generation/Overlap Change to You ?
Hi Mr Flipper,
I haven't posted here for ages, but I drop in from time to time to see how everyone is going (hello again everyone!) so I thought I'd mention the generation change to my mum last night after I had seen your question about other people's experiences with this issue. It was confusing to say the least. She explained that a person who was alive and aware of the events of 1914 belonged to a generation, and that anyone whose life overlapped that generation is part of the same generation. I told her I found that confusing, and asked whether she did too. She asserted it was really quite simple but that she probably wasn't explaining it properly. I asked her whether she realised that technically this overlapping of generations could go on ad infinitum. She was not comfortable with the logical conclusion to this New Light and mumbled something about a 'Secret Place' and keeping close to god. Where is the Secret Place? How do I get there? Is it new too?
In trying to sort out this 'generation' issue, I used my grandmother as an example. I said 'well, could you consider me to be the same generation as Nanna because my life overlaps hers?'. Mum said 'no, it's different'. When I asked her how it was different she couldn't answer me. She just kept saying it was different. Then I asked where this new teaching was coming from, giving her an outline of what I had been brought up to believe. I asked her if this new teaching on the generation was based on a scripture in the bible. She said NO. That's right, she actually said no. She said that it was just a new understanding. I asked her if it was New Light, and she squirmed slightly and said that it was just a new understanding.
Just for good measure I thought I'd throw in a reference to their U.N membership. She was a little surprised but then went on to claim that the U.N do all sorts of good things and help a lot of people. Guess the WTBTS have done a good job keeping up their end of the bargain and spreading the 'good word' about the U.N.
My relative brought it up at family get-together/Dinner after the annual meeting, but before the April WT was available for download.
They asked if we had heard anything about the new generation meaning from the annual meeting. I mentioned that a brother in Bethel had told me about the overlapping generations and explained it. One relative said, how does that make the end any closer? The other one said they obviously don't know what it means. One commented every assembly they keep saying that the end is close for decades; We have no idea when the end is and neither do they. For some reason one of them mentioned 1975. One said they never said the end would come in 1975. The other said Well they strongly hinted it. Then one said well they said the generation was the ones who lived in 1914, but they were mistaken. I almost peed my pants wondering where this was going, but then someone changed the subject.
On later occasions I tried to test the waters a bit by talking subtly about a related issue, but that seems to have put up the defenses so now their attitude has changed a bit and they talk about how close the end is and how great the assembly was. I think they were worried that they were discouraging me so now they are making efforts to be more spiritually upbuilding.
onversation with JW.
Me: How did you understand the new generation teaching at the convention?
Her: I understood it the way you did.
Me: and how do you think I understood it.
Her: The way you wrote in your notes.
Me: So what did you get out of that
Her: The same that everyone else got out of it.
Hahahaha! This one takes the cake! This could have gone on forever...and so what did everyone else get out of it?
I saw this thread got bumped up- so I'll respond. Thanks !
WHITMAN- Very interesting experience with your mom. Thanks for sharing. Isn't it amazing how even AFTER the District covention - many witnesses like your mom are stumbling and mumbling trying to explain this " overlap generation " theory ? It's like the concept of trying to force 2 generations into becoming 1 generation freezes their brains and they can't explain it or think straight ! Could it be because IT DOESN'T MAKE SENSE !! ?? LOL ! I liked how you used your grandmother as an example - that seemed to REALLY get your mom to thinking. I just feel so sorry for older people like your mom- or my parents in their 80's - I mean what ELSE do they have to hope for at this point in their lives ? They've been lied to by the WT society for 60 yrs. now - it's a bit late for some of these JW relatives - they've given too much to the cult.
PIRATA- Good experience. I wish I had been a fly on the wall listening in to your families " generation " talk ! It sounds like they were divided in their views of it. But the WT society expected this I believe- so that's why they have kept hammering away at this " generation " crap at District conventions, Circuit overseers visits- they wear witnesses down by reinforcing the teaching into their brains until it's screwed or hammered in HARD enough. That appears to have happened to your JW family AFTER they attended the convention. WT society is such a manipulative bastard cult- I swear.
QUANDRY- That was funny wasn't it ? " So what did everyone else get out of it "? That the GB served up " food " at the proper time and the " faithful slave " has everything under control with the new ever changing " overlap generation " teaching ! LOL ! Witnesses don't HAVe to understand it- they just HAVE to agree with it. And THAT is the insanity of the whole thing ! Crazy
My family went and thought the explanation was brilliant. One of them told me that she felt good about the whole teaching after it was explained. I asked her how? She tried to explain it but then said I would have to hear it for myself and watch the DVD because she might not be explaining it right.
I started a thread about this too. Put it in the wrong section though. Here's the link if you guys want to check it out.
sorry, can someone make it "clickable" for me?
There you go Cult Classic- hope that helps ! Peace out, Mr. Flipper
A man who works in the office with me is a JW and I asked him about it a few weeks ago. He started by saying that it's hard to explain but I kept insisting I wanted to understand it as well. It went something like this:
Well you know we used to think the generation that was alive in 1914 would still be around at Armageddon. But the time ran out so they had to look at the Bible again and discovered it meant overlapping generations. The example they used at the convention was how Brother Franz was born in like 1890 something and he was there in 1914 when Christ took his kingship. That's the first part of the generation. Then he died in 1993 and in between those times other annointed have been born and they are the second part and they overlap the first one so Jehovah is being kind by giving more people time to get in before the end comes.
I looked at him with a puzzled look and he replied "Yeah I know it's hard to understand. I mean I don't even comprehend it well myself but maybe I will in time."
I cannot figure out why I get so angry about this change. But I do. I really really do. Even more so now that my family is acting like it's no big deal and can all be explained away.
In trying to sort out this 'generation' issue, I used my grandmother as an example. I said 'well, could you consider me to be the same generation as Nanna because my life overlaps hers?'. Mum said 'no, it's different'.
You mother may not yet grasp the significance of the recent explanation of "this generation" (Matthew 24:34), but I can tell you that she is correct when she says that you would not be of the same generation as your grandmother.
In another thread, I recently explained how our understanding of this prophecy at Matthew 24:34, that is to say, the understanding of Jehovah's Witnesses, has increased over time as it becomes clear that what we had discerned in the past to be true was not true so that we are obliged to make adjustments. Jehovah's Witnesses are as anxious to see all false religion brought to a screeching halt by world leaders at the great tribulation, so our vigil is due to our being admonished by the Lord Jesus Christ to "keep on the watch." (Matthew 24:42)
Having said this, the holy spirit that a generation can be much longer than just the 20 or 23 years that we typically think a generation to be, for at Exodus 1:6, the holy spirit indicates that Joseph's "generation" was 110 years in length! This "generation" consisted of Joseph's siblings as well as to his two sons Manasseh and Ephraim, who were both alive when their father died, all of whose lives overlapped Joseph's life. Note that Exodus 1:6 refers to "all his brothers and all that generation."
The F&DS as represented by the governing body of Jehovah's Witnesses have pondered the significance of what the holy spirit is saying here at Exodus 1:6, and the spirit clearly refers to Joseph's contemporaries, in that the lives of Joseph's siblings and Joseph's two sons overlapped Joseph's. Just as Joseph's life had both a beginning and an ending, likewise the sign that Jesus provides us in Matthew chapters 24 and 25 has both a beginning and an ending.
Jesus was referring to the generation of the remnant of his anointed brothers that were alive during 1914 that saw the events that portended the beginning of the sign as well as to their contemporaries that would also see the events that portended the end of the sign with the coming great tribulation that precedes the end of this system of things. It has been explained that the lives of those that were alive in 1914 would therefore overlap the lives of those that would be alive when the great tribulation begins. Since almost 100 years have passed since 1914, we now know that Jesus could not have had in mind a 20- or 23-year generation, so we can now infer that Jesus was referring to a period of time as a "generation."
However, we would only be speculating as to the year when the end will come were we to add 110 years to the year 1914 and arrive at the year 2024, for even though we are sure that the year 1914 marked the beginning of "this generation," at Mark 13:32 Jesus points out that no one would know the "day or the hour" when the end of "this generation" would arrive. But the point being made here is that those of Jesus' anointed brothers, whose lives would overlap during the generation when the sign was in evidence, would not all of them "pass away until all these things occur."
Then I asked where this new teaching was coming from, giving her an outline of what I had been brought up to believe. I asked her if this new teaching on the generation was based on a scripture in the bible. She said NO. That's right, she actually said no. She said that it was just a new understanding. I asked her if it was New Light, and she squirmed slightly and said that it was just a new understanding.
That's interesting. The Samaritan woman to whom Jesus spoke had claimed to be a worshipper of Jehovah, but Jesus told her that she was worshipping a God that she didn't know, for the god that she worshipped -- the one about whom Moses talked about in the Pentateuch -- did not exist, and because she didn't know the God of the Jews who had revealed so much more of himself than she had learned in an additional 34 books, her knowledge of God was incomplete. (John 4:20-24) As a result, she was unable to worship God in spirit and in truth.
You may have been brought up to believe certain things as to what Jesus meant at Matthew 24:34 by "this generation"; perhaps in the past you learned that when Jesus used the words "this generation", that the generation to which he was referring was the 1914 generation consisting of people old enough to comprehend what things were taking place at that time. Or, you may have learned in the past that by "this generation," Jesus was referring to his anointed brothers that were alive in 1914 so that the great tribulation's arrival would be before the last one of these anointed brothers had deceased. Or you may have learned in the past that "this generation" was thought to have been people alienated from God who were contemporaries of Jesus' anointed brothers during the generation beginning in 1914 until the great tribulation, who would ultimately be destroyed at Armageddon.
The beliefs of Jehovah's Witnesses are progressive and they have never been static, so just like that Samaritan woman whose beliefs were static, some of what things you may have learned in the past about certain aspects of the truth may have had to be abandoned due to our having been mistaken in our viewpoint, so in many cases you will find that we no longer have the same understanding of a matter that we may have had and were teaching six months ago, let alone 5, 10 or 20 years ago.
It's like the concept of trying to force 2 generations into becoming 1 generation freezes their brains and they can't explain it or think straight !
There is but one generation of the sign with the anointed that saw the beginning of this sign and the anointed that will not pass away when the great tribulation comes toward the end of the sign. There is no reason for anyone to be attempting to force two generation into becoming a single generation since Jesus specifically spoke of "this generation," which is not two generations, but only one.
Even more so now that my family is acting like it's no big deal and can all be explained away.
There is nothing to 'explain away.' If you are impatient as to when the end is going to come, that means that you will have to learn patience, for no one knows the day or hour when the end is going to come, when God "again brings his Firstborn into the inhabited earth" and when "the sign of the Son of man will appear in heaven." (Hebrews 1:6; Matthew 24:30) The WTS is doing its level best to make sure that we all "keep on the watch" (Matthew 24:42) because no one knows when the Lord is coming. Being patient may be a big deal to you, but it really should not be, that is, unless you should be one of those that doubt that the end is coming.