Two possible reasons why some elders stay in the organization.
I am with those who say that in the majority of cases, elders do it in sincerity , believing it to be the truth...........But :
It must also be said that the "club" of the elders is the most chauvinistic boys club that I ever encountered. Alpha male personalities dominate and they (well many of them) just love the secrecy, the elitism and the power...I think they really delude themselves that Holy Spirit has chosen them to lead the flock and that the rank and file would be lost without them............Although they do believe, the fact is that one is so busy doing 'the job' that there is little time for considering why you are doing it...It becomes like an unpaid second job and you carry on doing it because .well , you just do !
Thank God I got out!
elderelite: 'We have just as much to lose as anyone else in leaving. we choose to hide and perhaps do some small good while we lurk.' You are the minority I mentioned earlier. And you are to be commended and I appreciate your situation.
Pride, power & prestige may be some reasons why Elders stay & serve. The 'fear' factor also plays a part as yet another reason why some/most/many Elders stay & serve in the organization (despite being aware of the serious flaws). Fear of man, fear of the organization, fear of offending the wife, fear that others will be disappointed in you if you step down. Fear of losing ones' status quo.....................
BluesBrother your post summed it up for me. Beyond the power struggle, elders stay because they believe they have a relationship with god through his son via the Watchtower society.
All Christians of various denominations believe their chosen path leads them to god/christ everlasting life. At the end of the day it's all the same deal; give or take a few doctrinal issues and a different slant on whether the bible is a holy book or just an interesting novel.
The elders are just people trying to build their lives on a network of invisible beings that they have never conversed with. They stay because they believe - they have faith. This is what all religions and people of faith do.
Either invisible beings control our destiny or we do - it really is that simple.
I think too many stay in because of the power. They like the idea that their decisions have the power to ruin lives, and so they will do so. This includes the pigs that will molest children during hounding calls and then threaten them with disfellowshipping.
It also includes those who make stupid rules. They will see something the Filthful and Disgraceful Slavebugger has issued a caution against (for instance, putting one's trust in material things). Upon which, they will issue bans on things where none were intended by the Filthful and Disgraceful Slavebugger. (An example is the hounder that bans investing in silver and gold, or other commodities, at the hint that such should not be solely trusted in). Invariably, they will use "brazen conduct" as the pretext to disfellowship anyone that continues owning such investments. Then, once the congregation is cleansed of such, the commodity price will go to the moon--at which point, the ban is lifted. Of course, people have missed out--and anyone that made a big profit and got disfellowshipped will not be reinstated since it was "brazen conduct" and not the investment itself that was the grounds.