NOTE: I chose the Simplified Watchtower for the next two quotes since the wording leaves less room for interpretation.
*** 2011 Simplified Watchtower July 15, pg. 11 ***
7. What must we do to avoid false teachers? We do not speak to them or invite them into our homes. We also do not read their books, watch them on television, read what they write on the Internet, or add our own comments about what they write on the Intenet. Why are we so determined to avoid them? First of all, it is because we love "the God of truth." So we do not want to listen to false teachings that go against the truth in God's Word. (Psalms 31:5; John 17:17) We also love the organization that Jehovah uses to teach us wonderful truths...
*** 2011 Simplified Watchtower July 15, pg. 21 ***
16... We can enter into Jehovah's rest if we obey him and work with his organization. 17. But we are acting against Jehovah's purpose if we do not obey the faithful and discreet slave or if we choose to obey only what we think is important. And if we act against Jehovah's purpose, we cannot be his friends...
*** km 9/07 p. 3 Question Box ***
? Does “the faithful and discreet slave” endorse independent groups of Witnesses who meet together to engage in Scriptural research or debate?—Matt. 24:45, 47.
No, it does not. And yet, in various parts of the world, a few associates of our organization have formed groups to do independent research on Bible-related subjects. Some have pursued an independent group study of Biblical Hebrew and Greek so as to analyze the accuracy of the New World Translation. Others explore scientific subjects related to the Bible. They have created Web sites and chat rooms for the purpose of exchanging and debating their views. They have also held conferences and produced publications to present their findings and to supplement what is provided at our Christian meetings and through our literature.
Throughout the earth, Jehovah’s people are receiving ample spiritual instruction and encouragement at congregation meetings, assemblies, and conventions, as well as through the publications of Jehovah’s organization. Under the guidance of his holy spirit and on the basis of his Word of truth, Jehovah provides what is needed so that all of
God’s people may be “fitly united in the same mind and in the same line of thought” and remain “stabilized in the faith.” (1 Cor. 1:10; Col. 2:6, 7) Surely we are grateful for Jehovah’s spiritual provisions in these last days. Thus, “the faithful and discreet slave” does not endorse any literature, meetings, or Web sites that are not produced or organized under its oversight.—Matt. 24:45-47.
It is commendable for individuals to want to use their thinking ability in support of the good news. However, no personal pursuit should detract from what Jesus Christ is accomplishing through his congregation on earth today. In the first century, the apostle Paul warned about getting involved in exhausting, time-consuming subjects, such as “genealogies, which end up in nothing, but which furnish questions for research rather than a dispensing of anything by God in connection with faith.” (1 Tim. 1:3-7) All Christians should strive to “shun foolish questionings and genealogies and strife and fights over the Law, for they are unprofitable and futile.”—Titus 3:9.
For those who wish to do extra Bible study and research, we recommend that they explore Insight on the Scriptures, “All Scripture Is Inspired of God and Beneficial,” and our other publications, such as those that discuss the prophecies found in the Bible books of Daniel, Isaiah, and Revelation. These provide abundant material for Bible study and meditation, whereby we can be “filled with the accurate knowledge of [God’s] will in all wisdom and spiritual comprehension, in order to walk worthily of Jehovah to the end of fully pleasing him as [we] go on bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the accurate knowledge of God.”—Col. 1:9, 10.
*** km 7/07 p. 3 Question Box ***
? What are the dangers of using the Internet to associate with someone we do not know?
A number of Web sites have been designed for people to meet and correspond over the Internet. Many of these sites allow individuals to create and post their own profile, which may include pictures and other personal information. People who view the profile can then make contact. Such Web sites are very popular among young people, and some youths in the congregation have used them to interact with others who claim to be Jehovah’s Witnesses. It is easy for a person whom we meet over the Internet to be deceptive about his identity, his spirituality, or his motives. (Ps. 26:4) An individual claiming to be one of Jehovah’s Witnesses may actually be an unbeliever, a disfellowshipped person, or even an active apostate. (Gal. 2:4) Reportedly, many pedophiles use such Web sites to find their victims. Even if we are convinced that those with whom we are corresponding are in good standing in the congregation, conversations in such a setting can easily drift toward unwholesome material. This is because people tend to be less inhibited with individuals they have not met personally. They may also view online communication as private and feel that whatever they say will not come to the attention of others, such as their parents or the elders. Sadly, a number of youths from Christian households have been ensnared and have become involved in obscene speech. (Eph. 5:3, 4; Col. 3:8) Others have included sexually provocative pictures of themselves, suggestive nicknames, or links to sexually explicit music videos in their computer profile. In view of the foregoing, parents should monitor their children’s activity on the computer. (Prov. 29:15) It would be dangerous to invite a stranger into our home or to allow him to be alone with our children. Similarly, it is dangerous for us or our children to make friends with strangers over the Internet, even if they claim to be Jehovah’s Witnesses.—Prov. 22:3.
*** km 9/02 p. 8 Avoid the Pursuit of “Valueless Things” ***
Avoid the Pursuit of “Valueless Things”
1 One popular means of communication today is E-mail. Although sharing personal experiences and thoughts among family and friends through this medium may be appropriate, what “valueless things” can be associated with the unrestricted use of E-mail?—Prov. 12:11.
2 Cautions Regarding E-Mail: Some claim to feel more in touch with Jehovah’s organization when they receive what they consider to be fresh information via E-mail. This may include experiences, notes on events at Bethel, reports of disasters or persecution, and even confidential information released at Kingdom Ministry Schools. Others seem overly eager to send such messages, hoping to be the first to reveal the information to their friends.
3 At times, information and experiences have been distorted or exaggerated. Or perhaps in an effort to be sensational, some have conveyed a false impression. Those who are hasty to reveal such matters often do not have all the facts. (Prov. 29:20) In some cases, even when a story is unbelievable, it is passed on as a curiosity. Such inaccurate or misleading reports amount to “false stories,” which do not promote genuine godly devotion.—1 Tim. 4:6, 7.
4 If you forward information that turns out to be inaccurate, you bear a measure of responsibility for the sorrow or confusion this can cause. When David received an exaggerated report that all his sons had been killed, he “ripped his clothes apart” in anguish. However, in truth, only one of his sons had died. That was distressing enough, but this exaggeration caused David added distress. (2 Sam. 13:30-33) Surely we would not want to do anything that would mislead or discourage any of our brothers.
5 God’s Appointed Channel: Bear in mind that our heavenly Father has an appointed channel of communication, “the faithful and discreet slave.” That “slave” has the responsibility to determine what information is made available to the household of faith, as well as “the proper time” for it to be dispensed. This spiritual food is available only through the theocratic organization. We should always look to God’s appointed channel for reliable information, not to a network of Internet users.—Matt. 24:45.
6 Internet Web Sites: We have an official Internet Web site: www.watchtower.org. This site is adequate to make information available to the public. There is no need for any individual, committee, or congregation to prepare a Web page about Jehovah’s Witnesses. Some have posted the contents of our publications with all scriptures and references given in full and have even offered copies of convention material on a donation basis. Whether profit is involved or not, the practice of reproducing and distributing publications of Jehovah’s Witnesses in an electronic document is a violation of copyright laws. While some may view this as a service to the brothers, it is not approved and should be discontinued.
7 Exercising good judgment and soundness of mind when using electronic communication will ensure that our minds are filled with “precious and pleasant things of value.”—Prov. 24:4.