FloridaPerry wrote, "Salvation is a GIFT. That is clearly made in the NT, that it CANNOT be earned. JW's SAY they agree with that, but that is clearly not as they function."
Excellent insight -- I think you've hit the nail on the head!
This works righteousness v. faith righteousness issue was the crux of the debate between the Catholic Church and Martin Luther and other Protestant reformers in the 1500s.
The WTS despises the Roman Catholic religion, but there are so many similarities.
Both talk about salvation by faith, but both have a works system for getting there; in practice, the works supplant faith in Jesus' sacrifice.
Both stress the importance of Jesus but both say that their organization is the only true way to get to God (although the Catholic church has mellowed on this, even acknowledging that Protestants can be saved without becoming Catholics!).
Salvation by grace alone through faith alone in the finished work of Christ was the keystone of the Reformation insight into the NT gospel message.
But by stressing "EXERCISING faith" and twisting the "work out your own salvation" scripture, the Watchtower has Jehovah's Witnesses on an endless treadmill of theocratic works by which they are never certain of their salvation and always fearful that they haven't done enough to obtain Jehovah's acceptance and approval.
It's an OT law system masquerading as NT grace.