What was your reaction when first introduced to the "1914" doctrine?

by highdose 18 Replies latest watchtower bible

  • journey-on
    What was your reaction when first introduced to the "1914" doctrine?

    (I was raised in the borg...'nuff said.)

  • Bungi Bill
    Bungi Bill

    When I was first introduced to it, the events of WW1, 1914, 1919 etc. etc. etc. were less than 50 years previous; "The Generation" was that of my grandparents, who were still very much alive in their late 60s; and "The Balloon was going to go up" in 1975, less than ten years in the future.

    All very plausible stuff!

    Even after the 1975 #%*&$-up; as others here have noted, the WTS mounted an offensive in the 1980s, and things still looked positive.

    As time went on, though, one had to face up to it that the WTS was going to have to do some fast talking to explain way their previous utterances about "The Generation" :

    - once it became plain even to the dimest of dimwits that that "Generation" had in fact departed, yet still nothing had changed.

    That was about the time I woke up to the sham that the WTS is, and decided that I had already heard enough fast talking to last a lifetime!


  • slimboyfat

    My impression was that it sounds far-fetched, but I thought they must know what they are talking about. I was young and impressionable.

  • doubtful

    It never made any sense to me at all as a born in. I've always loved history as well, and one thing the dubs always try to pull on unsuspecting potential converts is the ol':

    "Can you think of a time with more wars, violence, immorality, food shortages, and disease? Just think of the two World Wars, the threat of nuclear war, the starving kids in Africa, crime, and the AIDS epidemic!"

    Convert: "Why, no! Things are really bad these days. Whatever happened to the good old days?"

    JW: Exactly. You see, we are living in the last days! The Bible foretold that we would see all these things in Matt 24! blah blah blah"

    Even as a child, when they asked that question at meetings my mind would often drift to pages of history books as I began to count off in my head all of the other periods in history when the majority of the things discussed were far worse and more prevalent than our time.

    The 1914 doctrine never made much sense to me, but as a born in, the thought of questioning the FDS was unthinkable. I knew that however confusing and convoluted it might be, it had to be true, because the FDS said so! So, I would dismiss the doubts and instead focus my energies on memorizing and being able to recite all of the dogma to the best of my ability. Most of the other JW youth had no clue what 1914 was. As a matter of fact, I bet if you were to do a survey of 15-21 year old JWs, the majority of respondents would have no clue what 1914 is supposed to represent.

    It wasn't until I was about 16 or 17 when questions about 1914 became harder and harder to supress.

  • kurtbethel

    It looked like nonsense. The number of days were not the same as in actual 7 years. I could get no sensical explanation for that. WTF is a "prophetic year"? The year for a day substitution was in one case, and they wanted to apply it for this. I asked why not apply it consistently, Jesus dead for 3 years, Jonah in the fish for 3 years. No, then it was a day for a day. I asked how one would determine if a day was a day or it was a year, how I would tell the difference and got no sensible answer. Then there was the 607 matter. I showed how every source I could find claimed it was 587, and gave them a chance to show me scholars who supported 607. All I got was a tepid WT article that said, in effect, "our date is correct and everyone else is wrong because we said so and God is backing us!"

    1914 never even got off the ground in my study.

  • JeffT

    I hate to say it but it made sense. I first learned about it in 1972 or '73, during my senior year in college. My observations; war in Vietnam, Watergate, the first Earth Day in 1970, etc, supported the idea that the world was going to hell in a handbasket. Somewhere along in there in a history class I ran into a quote to the effect that in the years following the outbreak of WWI in 1914 civilization seemed bent on destroying itself. (Funny - I never saw that quote in a WT publication). The congregation I was assoicated with was very friendly, and things like picnics were fairly common. They did a good job of softening and/or hiding the stricter aspects of the religion.

    It took me fifteen years to wake up.

  • straightshooter

    I thought that their explanation about 1914 was very logical. It made me feel good to know that the paradise was so close. Now after many years have went by, the explanation about 1914 makes me sick at heart. They have destroyed my hopes and dreams of the paradise coming in my parents lifetime or mine.

  • nugget

    can't remember when I first heard it. It was always one of the things I fell back on when I had doubts I'd say to myself well they were right about 1914. It was hubby saying where do you think they got the idea from that really burst my bubble.

  • pirata

    Being a born in my reaction was "that's nice, can I watch cartoons now?"

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