And that is a first for me! I detest the religion of Jehovah's Witnesses. Deeply. Anyone who has followed my posting here for the past 6 years can attest to that!
The short version of this story is that I began to casually read a book entitled; "What the Watchtower Society Doesn't Want You to Know". The author, with whom I had become acquainted during the period right after I had left the organization, and during which period I was still seeking Christianity in substitution for a hole left by leaving - sent me a copy a few months back. He was under the impression that I was still seeking Christianity, and when I told him otherwise, he began to attempt to convert me. That's a whole other story.
But as I began to 'review' his book a little, I found absolute untruths within the first few pages, and even more half-truths scattered through the first couple chapters. Here is a sampling of the first few I found, and my comments to the author:
1. Page 14 of the ‘Introduction’, paragraph 1. You state that Kingdom Hall library’s and older publications must be viewed only with permission from an elder with an elder present as one reads the material.
This is patently not the case universally as you suggest – I am sure you never saw such a thing in Watchtower publications as you state – but if you did, please include an accurate footnote showing where this was stated officially. While you may have heard such things from those who bitterly left the organization, in my almost 40 years of association with this organization, and in many different congregations, I never heard of such a thing. Personally, I did a lot of research in the KH library myself, never asked permission, was never accosted or bothered for so doing, and indeed read parts of many older Watchtower publications, even taking some of them home from time to time. Never was an elder present when I did so, nor consulted for permission. Most considered me very ‘studious’ for taking such initiative.
2. Page 22 footnote.* Since the Society teaches that only the 'anointed' may be on the governing body, the organization has broken it's own rules with the appointment of Adams as President. It was only a matter of time before this would happen, however, since the Watchtower declared in 1935 that the number of 144,000 was filled, and that those baptized after 1935 were not of the 'anointed'.
Adams is the most recent president of the Watchtower society to ‘not’ be on the Governing Body of the religion. He is president, but not on the Body. Both Russell and Rutherford were never on the modern day Governing Body either, as such Body was not formed until well into Knorr’s presidency. The distinction between president and governing body membership is blurred nowadays, but nonetheless, there has never been any stipulation of which I am aware, that the president must be of the anointed. Therefore the society has not violated its most inviolate rule that members of the GB must be anointed. I find it interesting that your only footnote in this chapter is quite wrong. Perhaps libelous even.
3. Chapter 2, page 25/26 you state that Russell had no problem with blood transfusions. This may be true – but of it I am unaware.
It is certainly misleading though on any account, since modern blood medicine was in its infancy during WWI, and employed almost exclusively by the British and not the Americans. If there are Watchtower quotes showing Russell’s approval of the burgeoning field they need to be cited and quoted. Otherwise, since medicine of this sort was not really in practice, it paints an unfair negative picture of Russell. It was not as if he would have ‘approved’ of such practice likely, but more likely that he would have been largely unaware of these developments. Either way, fairness needs to be used in making such a broad stroke that gives the audience only a negative side, not quantified or qualified by quotations. It further serves up this negative on the horns of false-dilemma, since primarily wartime applications of this idea would have not confronted most or any of the Bible Students in day to day life at the time.
4. Page 30 paragraph 2– You state: "Jehovah's Witnesses now can accept alternate service in place of the draft in countries where this is permitted. In the countries in which it is not, the Witnesses are allowed to obey their government and go into the military."
I don’t believe that official position has ever allowed Jw’s to join the active military since the changes in alternate service in 1996. I would have to see that in print to believe it. Jw’s who join the military are considered ‘disassociated’ from the congregations. I know of no other policy.
This was just the beginning. I found over the course of several emails that he was totally unwilling to admit a single error in his book. The 'feel' of the book is negative, and it assumes a high level of naiveté on the reader. He works diligently throughout to paint the consistently worse picture possible - even when his 'facts' as shown above, are in question.
I actually found myself defending the Jw's against these charges. Wow. Interesting mindset of those determined to sling mud no matter the ethics. Interesting also is that he precedes his name with the title 'Reverend'.
I may not have fully defeated his arguments above, for I did no research before answering, only what I knew from my head and experience. He rejected my claims wholesale. I quit reading his book after that, and will likely not finish it. There is plenty of 'real' and 'accurate' negatives about this organization, without the need to lie outright.
One thing he did accomplish in my case: He cemented further my growing opinion that all religion is corrupt and desires to control at any cost. His born again claims notwithstanding, I found the man to be a curr and cowardly in his approach to defeating Jehovah's Witnesses.