Interracial Marriage

by Quendi 68 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • jam

    Yes, he would never reveal that information . It

    was A big story in the papers.

  • nugget

    I remember an article discussing inter racial marriage years ago. The main gist was that different cultures can vary and that it can make things very difficult in a marriage. Not knowing the dispicable rubbish previously printed it was very mild in comparison. However this was back when I was a JW and the chances are I didn't read it thoroughly and only read the main headings.

  • NewChapter

    I didn't know it made the papers Jam. I remember that even as a dub, I felt really bad that he was taking their knowledge away from them. I knew I shouldn't feel that, but I really did. It felt so very wrong, and yet the mag was celebrating it. That's why I remember the article. It never sat right with me.

    I remember thinking it's one thing not to want to participate anymore---it's completely another thing to obstruct and destroy.

    Ah well.


  • jam

    NewChapter; Yes I don,t know if he is still A JW, but

    it trouble his mind. The WT played that story up big.

    He was one of the few Native Americans in that area

    to come into the organization. It was one of the largest

    tribes in that state.

  • Band on the Run
    Band on the Run

    I grew up in a black congregation. We had a CO over for dinner. It came to my attention that southern KHS were segregated. I was so young but asked how something so wrong could ever be right. He answered that it would stumble Southern whites and they would not listen to the preaching. I was about ten.

    There were so few brothers! JWs mixed more than anyone outside of Greenwich Village and Paris. When I was young and you wanted to live, you moved to NY. And not just any neighborhood but the far west Greenwich Village. In fact, my hillbilly father used to pile the family in the car to tour the Village and point out the interracial couples. Next, we hit Harlem right after riots where this all white group in a small car gazed at special hair cuts and misspelled signage. People looked back at us in Harlem. The Angel of the Lord had to protecting the children in the group b/c no one ever threw even a small stone.

    I can hear them talking about stumbling. The purely racial garbage posted here is news to me. It is hard for me to read because I grew up in black JW experience as a token white. Family members would make excuses so they need not attend a black hall. We never made excuses. I saw the dedication of generations. All this time I thought JW were ok about race. My KH was pure ghetto but we lived near a town that had been integrated since before the REvolutionary War. No ghetto culture there. The dignity was amazing.

    Certainly these passages should cause some to rethink their devotion. New light, old light --would Jesus bar people? Never. I knew that at five or six.

  • Quendi

    Hello Everyone,

    I want to share my correspondence with Paul Grundy of the jwfacts website about whether the Society had ever directed that interracial couples be disfellowshipped.



    On 23/08/2011, at 2:00 AM, Quendi wrote:

    Hello Friend,

    I was directed to you after raising this question in the JWN forum. I have been told that once upon a time, interracial marriage was not only actively discouraged among Jehovah’s Witnesses, but that any such couples were disfellowshipped. I have read various quotes on both Charles Russell’s and Joseph Rutherford’s views on race and they are disgusting. What I need to know now is whether there was an official policy on interracial marriage and what sanctions, if any, were taken against such couples. I would appreciate any information you can give me.


    Quendi on JWN

    From: Paul Grundy [mailto:[email protected]]
    Sent: Thursday, 25 August, 2011 07:38
    To: Quendi

    Subject: Re: Interracial Marriage

    Hi Quendi,

    I am not aware of interracial marriage ever being a disfellowshipping offence.

    I have copied an article from the 1970's suggesting that interracial marriage may not be a good idea due to cultural differences, and how it may affect the preaching work.

    Kind Regards


    *** w73 12/1 pp. 735-736 Questions From Readers *** Questions From Readers

    ? What is the view of Jehovah’s witnesses toward interracial marriage?—France.

    Jehovah’s witnesses at all times seek to reflect the Biblical view of matters. The Bible does not specifically discuss interracial marriage. It does, however, show how Jehovah God views humankind and it provides guiding principles for those considering marriage.

    Superiority of race is nowhere taught or implied in the Bible. Jehovah God accepts as his approved servants people out of all races, without discrimination. The Bible tells us “[God] made out of one man every nation of men, to dwell upon the entire surface of the earth, and he decreed the appointed times and the set limits of the dwelling of men, for them to seek God, if they might grope for him and really find him.” (Acts 17:26, 27) “God is not partial, but in every nation the man that fears him and works righteousness is acceptable to him.”—Acts 10:34, 35.

    So, the Bible nowhere implies that racial differences in themselves have anything to do with the properness of marriage. Of the remarriage of widows, the apostle Paul wrote: “A wife is bound during all the time her husband is alive. But if her husband should fall asleep in death, she is free to be married to whom she wants, only in the Lord.” (1 Cor. 7:39) Thus the Christian is free to marry anyone who is Scripturally and legally free to do so, as long as that one is truly a fellow believer.

    Are there any other factors, then, worth considering? Yes, for Christians seek to exercise good judgment and wisdom in all they do. Among other things, they are encouraged to “go on walking in wisdom toward those on the outside,” those outside the Christian congregation.—Col. 4:5.

    In many areas interracial marriages are becoming increasingly common. People are traveling more, and often find the ways and customs of people of other lands attractive. War, too, has played a part, and many European and North American soldiers have married Asiatic wives. There is, then, a somewhat broadened viewpoint on the part of many toward interracial marriage.

    Nevertheless, not all persons share this broadened viewpoint, nor do all appreciate Bible standards. Many deep-seated prejudices remain in the world of mankind. A Christian, being realistic, must face life as it is—not as he wishes it might be.

    In a few places, there are even laws making interracial marriages illegal. When that is the case, Christians are under Scriptural obligation to obey them, as such laws do not make it impossible for them to worship God with “spirit and truth.” (John 4:24; Rom. 13:1) Of course, if a Christian would prefer to move to a locality where such laws are not enforced, he is certainly free to do so.

    In other communities, local prejudices produce discrimination and unkind treatment toward those of certain races of mankind. These prejudices do not make interracial marriage wrong. For the discerning Christian, nonetheless, they may give cause for thought as to the advisability of such marriage. No matter what the racial backgrounds of the mates, marriage of itself requires much adjustment on the part of both persons to be successful and to bring happiness. Human imperfection causes all marriages to bring some measure of ‘tribulation in the flesh,’ as the apostle Paul wisely points out. (1 Cor. 7:28) In certain localities, where racial prejudices are strong, this could put added strain on the marital relationship and could be especially trying for any children resulting. So the Christian should give thoughtful consideration to the probable consequences before entertaining the prospect of interracial marriage.

    Persons of different races may have very similar backgrounds, culturally, socially and as to education. Or their backgrounds may be very different. Sometimes the varied habits, attitudes and customs that go with different backgrounds seem to add interest to the marriage union. Yet widely differing backgrounds, even among marriage mates of the same race, can and sometimes do give rise to problems, making marital adjustment more difficult. In making his decision, the Christian should also rightly weigh these factors—for the other person’s happiness as well as his own.

    The Christian is under obligation to proclaim the good news of the Kingdom to others. (Matt. 24:14; 28:19, 20) As a factor, then, he may consider whether or not interracial marriage is likely to create a seriously adverse effect on the attitude of the people in his community toward this Kingdom-announcement work. The examples of Christ Jesus and his apostles show that they were willing to forgo things to which they had a right rather than severely hinder persons from being receptive to the truth of God’s Word.—Rom. 15:3; 1 Cor. 10:32, 33.

    However, after weighing all these factors thoughtfully, each Christian must make his own decision—in good conscience and motivated by love for God and for his neighbor.

    Hello Paul,

    Many thanks for your reply and I will be sure to share it with others. I started a thread on this topic on the JWN website and it has generated much discussion. Your research will help many learn what the WTS viewpoint on this has been.

    I found the reply in the “Questions From Readers” to be disturbing and hardly one that takes the moral high road. Telling Christians not to enter into interracial marriages because the state has banned them is wrong. The excuse the Society gave was that such a ban does not interfere with a Christian’s worship of God. But it most certainly does if a person’s future happiness is connected with the choice of a marriage mate. To tell people they should sacrifice their happiness to comply with some hateful and manmade law is wrong.

    And the Bible does talk about interracial marriage, although in a way the Society doesn’t want to acknowledge. Moses was in an interracial marriage. His wife Zipporah was a Cushite woman. This was a source of irritation and friction between Moses and his older sister Miriam, leading to Jehovah taking disciplinary action against her. (Numbers 12:1-16) Did Moses think that he shouldn’t marry Zipporah because of the opinion others would hold about this? Did he let cultural differences stand in the way of his love for her? Absolutely not! This is not to say these factors shouldn’t be weighed but that they cannot be the overriding consideration.

    Given the racist views both C.T. Russell and J.F. Rutherford held and published in The Watchtower, I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised by the answer the Society gave to its French correspondent. Compared to their thinking, some might believe that answer to be enlightened. However, when compared to what the Bible actually teaches, teachings the Society acknowledges are the only standard a Christian should follow, the answer given in this case is inadequate, incomplete, and insufficient.


  • NewChapter

    The Christian is under obligation to proclaim the good news of the Kingdom to others. (Matt. 24:14; 28:19, 20) As a factor, then, he may consider whether or not interracial marriage is likely to create a seriously adverse effect on the attitude of the people in his community toward this Kingdom-announcement work. The examples of Christ Jesus and his apostles show that they were willing to forgo things to which they had a right rather than severely hinder persons from being receptive to the truth of God’s Word.—Rom. 15:3; 1 Cor. 10:32, 33.
    This was the paragraph I found most vile. IF INTERRACIAL MARRIAGE WILL STUMBLE RACISTS AND KEEP THEM FROM SIGNING ON THE DOTTED LINE, YOU SHOULDN'T DO IT! As though those "worldlY' attitudes should trump "biblical" attitudes. Truly disgusting.

  • ohiocowboy

    I dated a Black sister when I lived in Minnesota. Most people were okay with it, except for a couple other black people who showed their displeasure and my mother who had a fit and started telling me about the problems our kids may have, etc. I guess it would depend on the congregation just as much as the people, as each one has there own type of personality, so what would be accepted in one congregation may be frowned upon in another.

    There is so much interbreeding among nationalities today that within a hundered years or so I doubt it will even be an issue. Then maybe all of the back and forth accusations of racism will cease on both sides. That will be a good day when and if that happens.

  • NewChapter

    Then maybe all of the back and forth accusations of racism will cease on both sides.

    And the accusations will stop because the racism will stop. A good day indeed.

  • Honesty

    In the early 1990's I had a black JW girlfriend.

    None of the JW's in my hall ever invited us as a couple to a gathering despite the fact that I was always invited before we started dating.

    Only a few of the JW's in her hall had anything to do with us.

    Her JW family wanted to know what she saw in a caucasoid and called us "Zebra" behind our backs.

    Her uncle was the PO of her congregation and told her that she had "crossed the line" when she started seeing me.

    Racism is alive and well in the JW cult no matter how much they spout that cult garbage that God is not partial.

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