Some comments from a JW friend...

by What Now? 11 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • What Now?
    What Now?

    These are a couple of comments I’ve heard recently from some JW friends that have gotten under my skin a little more than usual…

    I was talking with a friend of mine and somehow the subject of Armageddon came up and how once it starts “what you’ve done you’ve done”. She made the comment that “when that point comes, you better hope you’ve done enough”. That mentality is so sad to me. Especially lately, it seems that the GB is always pushing the brothers and sisters to do more and more. It’s never good enough. I know of so many that are depressed due to pure guilt over not having the circumstances to regular pioneer or join a foreign language congregation. There isn’t a meeting that goes by where we aren’t encouraged to put a few more hours in the ministry, for brothers to reach out to be an MS or elder – there is even an upcoming kingdom ministry article pushing for kids in school to “vacation pioneer”. This particular sister that I was having this conversation with is a “good” witness. They are regular at all the meetings and in field service, he is an MS, they have the group in their home, they do their family worship every week, they study, comment – the works. And STILL in spite of all that they are not even confident that that will be “good enough” for Jehovah.

    In another conversation (with this same sister actually), she was telling me how a good friend of hers had left “the truth”. Her friend had been avoiding her for months and finally admitted that her and her husband were no longer attending meetings – not because they were discouraged or anything, they came right out and said that they don’t believe this is the truth. And while my friend took this really hard, she said something along the lines of “well that’s what the bible said would happen, that as we get closer to the end that more and more of the brothers would fall away”. Is this true??? Has the GB covered their butts over this too – by attributing it to bible prophecy? Does anyone know where that is printed?

    Anyways, I’d love to hear your thoughts on this!

    OH, and as a VERY important side note – I just found out recently that my dad has not been attending meetings since December!!! And my mom has apparently joined a foreign language congregation on her own (I love how I am just finding this out now, but whatever!). Will keep you updated on this…

  • respectful_observer

    Your friend seems to be referring to Matt 24:11-12:

    (11) And many false prophets will arise and mislead many; (12) and because of the increasing of lawlessness the love of the greater number will cool off."

    I BELIEVE the WTS currently teaches that these verse apply to the congregation, not to those in "THE WORLD". (The WTS may have flip flopped on the meaning of those verses before though...Sorry, I'm not able to check sources right now, but maybe another poster can confirm.)


  • LostGeneration

    Unfortunately you are dealing with a hostage. They think that if they do what their "captors" say they will eventually be freed. But the catch is that the "captor" will never willingly free the hostage, no matter what they do.

    JWs think they will be freed when Armageddon comes, which is never. So they march to their graves, one by one, captive to the concept that their reward is just "right there" a few days or weeks or months, or at most, a couple of years away.

    They have to "want it," to be free that is. Many are comfortable in the lifestyle of being told when, what, and how to go about their daily lives. Being "busy" makes them "feel important" If you've ever read some of Dale Carnagie's stuff, he puts that need very high on the list of what people long for. What could be more important than preaching in the last days and serving the Most High?

    As to her "well the bible said that would happen" its just confirmation bias, a necessary tool used by cults to keep people captive. No matter what happens in the world around them, they will tweak or bend a verse to fit their world view. You can't win against this kind of thinking, because they are willing to lie to themselves in order to preserve the little cocoon they living inside.

  • sd-7

    I think when someone says things like "you can only hope you've done enough," it begs a question: What would God consider as "enough"? And then, well, there's that letter to the Galatians. What acts, what conduct, what laws can we keep that will ensure that we will be saved? Ultimately it boils down to, where is Jesus? If we are saved by works, then Jesus died for nothing. Paul made that point clear. And he also said that those who insist that works will save us are basically nullifying Jesus' sacrifice. See, the idea for a Christian is that Jesus saves us so that we can do good works, not that we do good works so that Jesus will save us. The saving happens while we are still sinners, not when we become righteous or "do enough".

    This is where Matthew 25 is so lost on Witnesses. Jesus comes to judge everyone, but what does he do? Does he pull out your publisher's card and say, "Oh, gee, you only got 5 hours that month. What happened there? And why aren't you doing all your return visits?" No! He talks about simple acts of compassion towards those in need. No other works needed. Because that was his example--helping people. Compassion. That was his idea of 'full-time service'. No literature placements needed, just love for our neighbor. Those numbers on that time slip only have meaning to the Watchtower Society....Incorporated.

    As for the other part, well, the Bible says a lot of things that can be applied a lot of ways. Maybe this couple happened to stumble across the Bible's prophecy that says "And many will come in my name and say 'I am he', and, 'The due time has approached.' DO NOT GO AFTER THEM." Sounds to me like they fulfilled THAT Bible prophecy! So I guess it's all a matter of which verse you want to point to today, isn't it? Also, does this sister have some actual proof that these individuals are no longer loving, kind people? Does she have any actual information to suggest that they are now cold and loveless? Or is it simply their absence from an organization that by default 'proves' this to be the case? When you attribute all that is good to belonging to an organization, you set up a situation where even simple deeds of kindness that would otherwise be admirable are now subject to strict regulations. The WT has been known to drop a few ice cubes into any opportunity to show true love for others.

    But yes, this is an unfortunate reflection of the typical JW worldview. Desperately working for what is ultimately being withheld from them anyway, and dismissing those who realize it as being the ones in the wrong. Sounds like a classic case of reversal of reality.


  • jamiebowers

    Man, SD-7, you're on fire today!

  • leaving_quietly

    She's quite possibly referring to 1 Tim. 4:1: "4 However, the inspired utterance says definitely that in later periods of time some will fall away from the faith, paying attention to misleading inspired utterances and teachings of demons."

    Funny, though, just now reading this, I see it says "in later periods of time", not "in the last days". This one merits some research.

  • NeonMadman

    there is even an upcoming kingdom ministry article pushing for kids in school to “vacation pioneer”.

    Are they actually using that term again? They did away with the term "vacation pioneer," like, 40 years ago.

  • blondie

    As to the love of greater number cooling off, the WTS still applies that to non-jws, never to jws. Individual jws pick up that idea from each other because most never study the bible and few really listen to what "mother" tells them with any accuracy.

    *** g 3/06 p. 5 Why True Love Is Hard to Find ***He also said that “many . . . will betray one another and will hate one another” and that “the love of the greater number will cool off.” (Matthew 24:3-12) Do you not agree that the world has grown colder and that genuine love is lacking, even within families?

    *** w05 7/1 p. 24 par. 11 Good News for People of All Nations ***As Satan’s influence grows in the earth, another challenge is more frequently faced—there is little response in some territories. Of course, this situation does not surprise us, since Jesus foretold that such a condition would exist. Speaking about our day, he said: “The love of the greater number will cool off.” (Matthew 24:12) Indeed, belief in God and respect for the Bible have waned among many. (2 Peter 3:3, 4) Consequently, in some parts of the world, relatively few individuals become new disciples of Christ.

    *** w04 10/1 p. 15 par. 5 “Have Tender Affection for One Another” ***Although in this world “the love of the greater number” is cooling off, Jehovah is teaching his modern-day people “to love one another.” (Matthew 24:12; 1 Thessalonians 4:9)

    *** w02 11/1 p. 11 par. 9 “Maintain Your Conduct Fine Among the Nations” ***As Jehovah’s Witnesses study the Bible, attend Christian meetings, and pray constantly to God, love becomes natural to them despite living in a world where ‘the love of the greater number has cooled off.’—Matthew 24:12.

    *** w84 12/15 p. 30 Do You Remember? ***

    When, at Matthew 24:12, Jesus said that “the love of the greater number will cool off,” was he predicting this to happen to true worshipers now?

    Jesus’ words were part of a prophecy about ‘the sign of his presence and of the conclusion of the system of things.’ (Matthew 24:3) These words found an application in the first century among Jews claiming to worship God. With their lack of love they did not heed Jesus’ warning, and they suffered the consequences when the Roman armies invaded Jerusalem. Comparably, among professing Christians today not only is neighbor love diminishing but so is love for God. This is the principal application of Jesus’ words, yet they should act as a warning for all true Christians as well.—10/1, page 31.

  • why144000
  • What Now?
    What Now?

    Thank you all for your replies!

    @leaving_quietly - That must be the scripture that she is thinking of. That bothers me that that is how any who leave over doctrine is explained - as fulfillment of bible prophecy. It doesn't leave any possibility that those who leave have legitimate and valid reasons for doing so.

    @sd-7 - I wish I could put it as eloquently as you. Love this: When you attribute all that is good to belonging to an organization, you set up a situation where even simple deeds of kindness that would otherwise be admirable are now subject to strict regulations.

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