Watchtower falsification of its history

by jwfacts 75 Replies latest watchtower bible

  • cedars

    Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar...

  • 00DAD

    They clearly hope no one is doing any FACT CHECKING!

    This is why they warn their followers away from the evil internet where they might find out that the WT is full of lies and misrepresentations even in the biggest points, let alone the smallest details.

  • cedars

    More examples of dishonesty in Part 1 of the Faith In Action series...


  • jonathan dough
    jonathan dough


    The year 1874 was a pivotal cornerstone in Russell's theology that was taught during the late 19th century, and was not abandoned until the 1930s. Relying heavily on Adventist false prophecies, Russell also taught that 1874 marked the Second Advent, or the Second Coming of Christ, though invisible to the human eye. The Watchtower Society's founder, Russell, wrote that “[t]he second advent of our Lord in the end or harvest of the Gospel age, occurr[ed] in the fall of 1874 .... October 1874 [was] the date of our Lord's return …. [T]he time-prophecies thus point to and harmonize with 1874 as the date of our Lord's second presence, assuring us of the fact with mathematical precision ….” The Time of the Harvest (1911 ed.), 125, 127, 129.

    A careful study of times and seasons taught in Scripture convinced us that the Lord was due to be present in 1874, and other time teachings of the Word showed that in the spring of 1875 the restitution of all things was due to commence. Zion's Watch Tower, August 1883, 1.

    Furthermore, Russell also taught that October 1874 marked the beginning of the battle of Armageddon, which would end in October of 1914: “The date of the close of that 'battle' is definitely marked in Scripture as October 1914. It is already in progress, its beginning dating from October 1874.” Zion's Watch Tower, January 15, 1892, 23. Needless to say, none of this proved true.

    Did Russell or the Watchtower Society bother to correct this false teaching within a reasonable period of time in subsequent years? No. The year 1874, the alleged Second Coming of Christ, served as core Watchtower doctrine up until the 1930s. They wrote: “The second coming of the Lord … began in 1874 …. Prophecy cannot be understood until it has been fulfilled or is in the course of fulfillment.” Creation 1927, 2,175,000 ed., 289. “The Scriptural proof is that the second presence of the Lord Jesus Christ began in 1874 A.D.” Prophecy, 1929, 1,589,000 ed., 65. Not until 1932 did the Watchtower Society acknowledge this false prophecy, shifting the Second Coming from 1874 to 1914 when it conceded its manifest error: “The prophecy of the Bible, fully supported by the physical facts in fulfillment thereof, shows that the second coming of Christ dates from the fall of the year 1914.” What is Truth? (1932), 48.


    Of all the dates, the times, and the seasons which the Watchtower Society holds dear, none is more important today than 1914 when, they teach incorrectly, Christ allegedly returned invisibly to earth at his second coming. However, before 1914 the Society taught many other things which have proven to be false. Before 1914 they taught that 1914 marked the end of all earthly government institutions, and the fall and utter destruction of all false religions; that year was to be the end of Armageddon, the end of the Gentile Times, and the beginning of Christ’s millennial 1,000-year-reign over Jehovah's Witnesses in a paradise on earth. Little known to the Jehovah's Witnesses, pyramidology - measurements taken from Egypt's Pyramid of Giza - was used in part to calculate 1914, a pagan occultish practice condemned in the Bible. The Society wrote, in The Way to Paradise, at 171, that “The Bible and 'The Bible in Stone' [the Pyramid of Giza] give the date 1914: for the beginning of the great change.”

    With Armageddon having allegedly begun in 1874, Russell was adamant that it would end in 1914, writing with respect to that date, “We see no reason for changing the figures – nor could we change them if we would. They are, we believe God's dates, not ours. But bear in mind that the end of 1914 is not the date for the beginning, but for the end of the time of trouble.” Zion's Watch Tower, July 15, 1894, 226. “... The battle of the great day of God Almighty … [t]he date of the close of that 'battle' is definitely marked in Scripture as October 1914. Zion's Watchtower, January 15, 1892, 23.

    The beginning of the earthly phase of the Kingdom in the end of A.D. 1914 will, we understand, consist wholly of the resurrected holy ones of olden time – from John the Baptizer back to Abel - “Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and all the holy prophets. Studies in the Scriptures, Series IV - The Day of Vengeance, 625.

    And yet “Jerusalem must be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled; hence, trodden down until A.D. 1914, when the day of wrath will be passed, and the resurrection and return of the “whole house of Israel” due. Three Worlds and the Harvest of This World (1877) 166.

    “That the deliverance of the saints [the 144,000] must take place some time before 1914 is manifest, since the deliverance of fleshly Israel, as we shall see, is appointed to take place at that time.” Studies in the Scriptures, Series III – Thy Kingdom Come (1908 ed.).

    1914 was to be the year that 40 years of “harvest” work was to be completed – the completion of the preaching work and the in-gathering of additional Watchtower believers, but as we know, the Watchtower preaching work continues: “.... [T]he close of 1874 marked the beginning, as the close of 1914 will mark the end of this 40 years of harvest ....” Studies in the Scriptures, Series III – Thy Kingdom Come, 149 – 150. Furthermore, all religions, other than the Watchtower Society, were regarded then, as now, as false and under the influence of Satan, and are referred to as Babylon the Great. And Babylon, it was prophesied, was to be completely destroyed – all religions, except their own, were to be utterly vanquished in 1914.

    The seventh trumpet sounds from August 1840 until “the time of trouble,” or day of wrath is ended. Hence, it doubtless ends with the Times of the Gentiles, and this forty years of conquest; and therefore, sounds until A.D. 1914, at the end of which, Babylon the great will have fallen, and the “dragon be bound: that is, the nations will be subdued, and “the prince of this world cast out.” Three Worlds and The Harvest of This World (1877), 143.

    A.D. 33, to A.D. 70 was 36 ½ years; and so from A.D. 1878 to the end of A.D. 1914 is 36 ½ years. And, with the end of A.D. 1914, what God calls Babylon, and what men call Christendom, will have passed away, as already shown in prophecy. Studies in Scriptures, Series III – Thy Kingdom Come, (1891) 153.

    October, 1914, will witness the full end of Babylon, “as a great millstone cast into the sea, utterly destroyed as a system. Watch Tower, June 15, 1911, 190.

    These prophecies proved false as well. To add insult to injury, before 1914 the Watchtower Society also prophesied that all of mankind's governments would be overturned in 1914, and God's kingdom on earth would “assume control.” Studies in Scriptures, Series II – The Time is at Hand, (1889) 77, 78.

    True, it is expecting great things to claim, as we do, that within the coming twenty-six years all present governments will be overthrown and dissolved. In view of this strong Bible evidence concerning the times of the Gentiles, we consider it an established truth that the final end of the kingdoms of this world, and the full establishment of the Kingdom of God, will be accomplished at the end of A.D. 1914. Be not surprised, then, when in subsequent chapters we present proofs that the setting up of the Kingdom of God is already begun, that it is pointed out in prophecy as due to begin the exercise of power in A.D. 1914 with the complete overthrow of earth's present rulership, is already commenced. The gathering of the armies is plainly visible from the standpoint of God's Word. Studies in the Scriptures, Series II – The Time is at Hand (1889) 99, 101.

    The year 1914 was looked upon differently after it came and went because each and every prophecy proclaimed with respect to that date proved false. Subsequently, new dates and new predictions, and shockingly radical revisions were made by the Watchtower Society of their previous false prophecies once the extent of their egregious errors came to light. Today the Watchtower teaches that 1914 marked the beginning of the end, not the end of the end, as taught up to 1914. Obviously the change in predictions and the significance of associated events is profound. The Jehovah's Witnesses are taught today, and are required to believe, that the Second Coming of Christ, and his “invisible” presence on this earth, happened in 1914.

    Changing the significance of 1914 and disavowing the false prophecies and occurrences associated with the years 1874 – 1914 inclusive, whether implicitly or explicitly, is an admission by the Watchtower Society that they are false prophets. The false nature of earlier predictions is compounded by later attempts to deny they made certain of those pre-1914 false prophecies and statements of “facts” in the first place. In other words, the Watchtower Society is guilty of trying to rewrite their own history; of denying what they taught, believed and prophesied, notwithstanding overwhelming documented evidence to the contrary.

    To illustrate, as pointed out by Paul Grundy, author of – most likely the finest overall website dedicated in great detail to the Jehovah's Witnesses religion, and to whom this writer is profoundly indebted – many of the Society's false prophetic predictions were contained within Studies in the Scriptures, which they continued to use after 1914. Subsequent editions of this series of writings were change to reflect an altogether different past; a retroactive alteration aimed at changing the “false” to the “truth.”

    As Paul Grundy writes, “The 1908 edition of Studies in the Scriptures, Series III – Thy Kingdom Come stated on p. 228 that the resurrection would occur before 1914. The 1915edition changed this to state that the resurrection was to occur soon after 1914.” The 1908 edition provides, “That the deliverance of the saints must take place some time before 1914 is manifest ….” While the 1915 edition provides, “That the deliverance of the saints must take place very soon after 1914 is manifest.” This is no trivial change, but a fundamental misappropriation of the truth, a disturbing alteration of facts which served to conceal the reality of the false prophecies the Watchtower Society actually taught.

    Even more bothersome for an organization which claims it alone was granted biblical truth is their subsequent handling of the crucial year 1914 with respect to Christ's return. Grundy writes, “In 1914, the Watchtower was teaching that Jesus' presence began in 1874 and his heavenly rulership began in 1878.”

    Our belief that the Kingdom began to be set up, or brought into power, in April, 1878, be it observed, rests on exactly the same foundation as our belief that the Lord became present in Oct. 1874, and that the harvest began at that time. Thy Kingdom Come, p. 205.

    As chronicled in detail above, pre-1914 prophecies predicted that 1914 marked the end of Armageddon, the conclusion of the time of troubles, and that Christ's Second Coming and presence began in 1874; nothing could be clearer. However, in subsequent years the Watchtower Society has gone to great lengths covering up those false prophecies, in effect denying they ever taught them in the first place, writing: “The Watchtower has consistently presented evidence that Jesus' presence in heavenly kingdom power began in 1914. Events since that year testify to Jesus' presence. Jehovah's witnesses have consistently shown from the Scriptures that the year 1914 marked the beginning of this world's time of the end and that 'the day of judgment and of destruction of the ungodly men' has drawn near.” Watchtower, January 15, 1993, 5, 9.

    But that is simply not true. As established above, the Watchtower Society on many occasions taught the opposite; that 1874, not 1914, was the beginning of Armageddon; and that 1874 marked the beginning of Christ's presence and His Second Coming, not 1914. The extent of the Watchtower's cover-up is astounding, as seen by the following excerpts:

    True to such calculations, 1914 did mark the end of those times and the birth of God's kingdom in heaven with Christ Jesus as king. Just think of it! Jehovah granted his people that knowledge nearly four decades before those times expired. Yearbook, 1975, 37.

    Of all men used by God to prophesy, Jesus is outstanding. Based on what he said, along with the words of Daniel and John, Jehovah's witnesses pointed to the year 1914, decades in advance, as marking the start of the “conclusion of the system of things.” Awake! January 22, 1973, 8.

    As for the time of Christ's second presence, Daniel's prophecy is again the one that gives the chronology for it. (Dan 4:16) It was figured out as pointing to A.D. 1914, and the Watchtower called notice to the significance of 1914 in the year 1879. Watchtower, November 1, 1952, 658.

    [I]n 1914 C.E. … the Most High God Jehovah installed the Messiah Jesus on the heavenly throne in order to reign and go subduing among his enemies. (Psalm 110:1-6; Acts 2:34-36; Hebrews 10:12, 13)

    [A] prophecy providentially caused sincere 19th-century Bible students to be in expectation. By linking the “seven times” of Daniel 4:25 with “the times of the Gentiles,” they anticipated that Christ would receive Kingdom power in 1914. Watchtower, September 15, 1998, 15.

    For over thirty years, before that date and for half a century since, Jehovah's witnesses have pointed to the year 1914 as the time for the end of the “appointed times of the nations” and the time in which Christ would begin his Kingdom rule. (Luke 21:24). Watchtower, February 15, 1966, 103.

    Why, then, do the nations not realize and accept the approach of this climax of judgment? It is because they have not heeded the worldwide advertising of Christ's return and his second Presence. Since long before World War I Jehovah's witnesses pointed to 1914 as the time for this great event to occur. Watchtower, Jun 15, 1954, 370.

    This was a new revelation of great importance to God's people who had been anxiously awaiting his second presence toward the end of the nineteenth century. Watchtower, July 15, 1965, 428.

    But none of this is true when one compares these latter assertions with earlier pre-1914 prophecy. Their “understanding” of 1874 did not change until 1943 when that date, as being the year of the “Return of the Lord Jesus Christ” was done away with. God's Kingdom of a Thousand Years has Approached, 209. The Watchtower continued to falsely teach that Jesus' presence began in 1874 well into the 1920s, writing: “Bible prophecy shows that the Lord was due to appear for the second time in the year 1874. Fulfilled prophecy is otherwise designated the physical facts; and the facts are indisputable.” Watch Tower, November 1, 1922, 333. They also wrote: “The Scriptural proof is that the second presence of the Lord Jesus Christ began in 1874 A.D.” Prophecy, 1929, 65, 66.

  • JW GoneBad
    JW GoneBad

    Mr. Paul Grundy (JWfacts) you have got to be one hell of a thorn in the flesh of the WTBTS!

    Excellent work.

  • villagegirl

    The cross and crown is benign compared to then early books and studies in the scriptures that have the Wings of ISIS embossed in gold on the book covers, to tie into all the Egyptology that Russell wrote volumes about, calling the Great Pyramid, Jehovah's Wittness in Stone This reference gave the idea to change the name of the group from Bible Students to Jehovah's Wittnesses, so in reality, its a name derived from Russel's fascination with Pyramids.

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