Jookbeard, Debator is definitely Reniaa. No doubt there.
I was BANE...I have an apology to most of you.
I would recommend that you put away your WT literature and just read the NT by itself to see what it really says.
Start with Romans and Galatians.
As you do this, note how different the message of the Bible is from the message of the Watchtower.
You wrote, "The article suggested that a person could be doing everything but if he failed in this one area he wouldn't make it... the witnesses got me thinking that if you miss a meeting, God's wrath is coming. I am tired of that negative thinking. Tired of living in fear."
1 John 4:18: "There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear..."
What I'm saying is that real New Testament Christianity is all about forgiveness, grace, and Jesus.
By contrast, the Watchtower religion is all about rules, condemnation, and "the faithful and discreet slave organization."
In the Watchtower religion, you're never good enough; it's as if Jesus made the down payment but you have to keep up all the installments.
By contrast, in New Testament Christianity, Jesus makes us good enough because he paid the entire debt of our sin.
I am still thinking about what Outlaw said -
Wannabe suggested reading some books. I totally agree. Add "Captive to a Concept" to the list.
I, too, would like to know what your wife thinks about your epiphany. Is/was she a JW and what is her feelings?
Your journey has just begun...hang in there for a bumpy ride.
Welcome back BANE aka Botzwana! It's nice to see you back.
You may not believe this but in real life I'm not a vindictive person, though there are times I wish I was.
Loved your apology to the board. I love lightbulb moments and it's great that you got yours.
*extends an olive branch*
Botzwana wrote, "But this [WT article] talked about God's righteousness and that in addition to ALL the other stuff we have to do to be clean in God's eyes we also NOW have to ONLY focus on his righteousness."
When Martin Luther was a Catholic monk, he used to HATE thinking about God's righteousness because all it did was make him think of his own unrighteousness and failures. He always felt condemned because he knew he was never good enough.
Then he came to see that Christianity isn't about trying to make ourselves righteous enough to be accepted by God because we can NEVER attain to such a standard.
Instead, it's about a new birth (John 3:3) in which Christ, through his sacrifice, puts HIS righteousness to our account. In other words, when surrender our lives to him, he GIVES us his righteousness as a free gift.
Romans 10:3 describes a misunderstanding of the Jews, a misunderstanding that's shared by the Watchtower and every other works religion: "Since they did not know the
righteousness that comes from God and sought to establish their own, they did not submit to God's righteousness."
Consider Romans 3:20-24: "Therefore no one will be declared righteous in his sight by observing the law; rather, through the law we become conscious of sin. 21 But now a righteousness from God, apart from law, has been made known, to which the Law and the Prophets testify. 22 This righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference, 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 and are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ
Romans 3:28: "For we maintain that a man is justified by faith apart from observing the law."
In other words, we can't EARN God's acceptance and love no matter how many theocratic works we do; we have to humble ourselves and receive it by faith as a FREE GIFT paid for completely by Jesus' sacrifice.
THAT is the good news of the Bible.
Oh no! Your timing couldn't be worser. Armageddon starts tomorrow!
He can't go to Bethal because he played a violent videogame.
I remember being taken to task for playing Ms. Pacman. I was told that it "glorified gluttony, violence, and perhaps even cannibalism."
If every JW who ever played a "violent" game or watched a violent movie was DF'd, there would be no more JWs. Is there even such a thing as a game or movie that does not have some form of conflict? Without conflict there is no story, nothing for the good guys to overcome. Ok, maybe that's not totally accurate. There's always sex.
Welcome to the darkside! I look forward to having you scripturize on our side.
I feel bad saying this, but I don't remember Bane's postings.....I am truly sorry...
I don't recall if he was like DJ or Debator...
But if you really have had an "awkening" of sorts and now see the issues that you couldn't see before, that is great, but I wonder HOW much are you still a JW?
How do you know view the blood issue? the 607BC and 1914 dates? How do you view the cross, Bdays and such?