"Never receive him into your homes"

by sd-7 11 Replies latest jw friends

  • sd-7

    I was just thinking about that scripture, 2 John 9-11, if I remember correctly. Jehovah's Witnesses use it to justify their shunning of members who have been expelled. A thought just occurred to me about it. "Never receive him into your homes," is what verse 10 says. But wait--at that time, there were no religious buildings for Christians--no churches, and feel free to correct me if I'm wrong, but everything I can recall reading indicated that Christians were meeting in people's homes. So if such a person was never to be received into "your homes", then doesn't that mean he or she would be barred from all meetings? Not sure if there's any proof that it worked that way in the first century, but then, just like Jon Snow, I know nothing.

    Take from it what you will, I may be wrong here. But if I am right in how I understand this, then how can the JW policy on reinstatement be the correct one, when they do not, in fact, bar expelled persons from their meetings? Do I think they should? In my case, it's more a matter of why I would care one way or the other really; I don't care. It certainly would be less shameful if you didn't have to look upon the people who were shunning you twice every week for at least a year. But then there'd be no exposure to the information at meetings. (And less of the emotional control that manipulates people to return, the constant guilt and maybe even talks jabbing at you personally whether intended or not [and usually it is].) Really, that's all it's about. It's not like they can monitor your behavior once you leave the Kingdom Hall parking lot, so meeting attendance isn't really proof of anything about your character; after all, you could well have been attending regularly before the expulsion occurred, right?

    Maybe one of you has researched this issue better than I have and can point to WTS statements on that particular problem or relevant historical data. Not planning to use this info to convince JWs of anything, just batting the issue around out of mere curiosity.


  • 00DAD

    WT/JW shunning policy is, as you know, NOT a coherent, logical policy that can be supported by scripture. As you pointed out, the relevant (or not) scriptures can be interpreted to make them say pretty much whatever you want.

    At the risk of stating the obvious, the way JW shunning is practiced has two parallel purposes:

    1. Humiliate the "sinner" publicly
    2. Scare the shit out of everyone else

    This is pretty much why many societies used to (and some still do) have public floggings and executions.

    The beatings will continue until morale improves!

    Public Flogging

    Last US Public Hanging

    A crowd watched as a black hood was placed on Rainey Bethea’s head before his hanging on Aug. 14, 1936. In 1938, Kentucky ended public executions - the last state to do so.


    I think you are 100% correct. The belief by JW's that they are a 1 to 1 model of the 1st century is a sad joke. Christians met is homes, or other safe locations. Why? Where would they go, the temple??? They had to meet together in small groups. So if someone was not a Christian or was just wanting to stir up trouble or was trying to corrupt the group then should not receive them into your home! They could change of course.

    I bet the 1st century Christians didn't say that their neighbors didn't love eachother like they did!! I also bet they didn't shun people who did not accept 100% of what they said. " He that is not against us if for us ", right?

    The WTBTS doesn't do anything without pre-meditation in my opinion. Outsiders might think that they are dumb, but they are crafty like wolves.

  • Bobcat

    In fact, the verse is referring to ones who would not yet have been put out of the congregation. The NLT Bible paraphrases the text but catches the gist of what John is talking about. (See it here starting with verse 7) Back in John's time there were itinerant or traveling brothers that could prove troublesome to the congregations if there teaching strayed from basic Christian doctrine.

    From the Society's standpoint, they keep a tight grip on who travels to visit congregations. And brothers visiting to give talks from other congregations would be reported to his BOE if his talks were out of line. So there is no reason for the Society to even pay much attention to this verse, in practice at least.

    It is disingenious for the Society to apply this to disfellowshiped people. For example, a DFed son or daughter visiting his JW parents to see how they are doing, or to look out for them as a grown child should, could hardly be described as John does in these verses. But the Society isn't bothered by context. If the verse says, 'never say a greeting to them,' they simply hijack that phrase and apply it to anyone they want.

  • PSacramento


    7 For (Q) many deceivers have (R) gone out into the world, those who (S) do not acknowledge Jesus Christ as coming in the flesh. This is (T) the deceiver and the (U) antichrist. 8 (V) Watch yourselves, (W) that you do not lose what we have accomplished, but that you may receive a full reward. 9 Anyone who goes too far and (X) does not abide in the teaching of Christ, does not have God; the one who abides in the teaching, he has both the Father and the Son. 10 If anyone comes to you and does not bring this teaching, (Y) do not receive him into your house, and do not give him a greeting; 11 for the one who gives him a greeting (Z) participates in his evil deeds.

    Who are we not to receive?

    Those that do NOT acknowldeg that Jesus Christ AS coming IN the flesh ( the incarnation). (Verse 7)

    Those that do not have the (union of ) Father AND the Son. (verse 10).

    IN short, we are not to receive anyone claiming to be a CHristian but that does NOT preach the incarnation ( and possibly resurrection, John isn't clear in that regards BUT from His other writing we can assume he also means that) or the union of Father and Son.

  • Listener

    You make a very valid point SD 7. Meetings form an important part of their worship and they allow disfellowshipped ones to participate with them in this sacred activity. Of course they would never ban Df'd ones from attending the hall due to legal issues and their status as a religion.

  • nuthouse escapee
    nuthouse escapee

    sd7 & Psacramento, very interesting points. It has been so long I can't remember but in a family is the disfellowshipped mate permitted to partake in worship within the family as an observer? If not, then why are they permitted basically as an observer into the KH?

  • ÁrbolesdeArabia

    This scripture applies to anyone who comes into your home and teaches "Jesus did not die for everyone, he only died for a special group of men". Do your homework and you will see that anyone who deny's Jesus came in the flesh and died "for the whole world's sins (not just a small group") are the anti-christs!

  • ÁrbolesdeArabia

    This scripture applies to anyone who comes into your home and teaches "Jesus did not die for everyone, he only died for a special group of men". Do your homework and you will see that anyone who deny's Jesus came in the flesh and died "for the whole world's sins (not just a small group") are the anti-christs!

  • jwfacts

    2 John 7-11:

    For many deceivers have gone forth into the world, persons not confessing Jesus Christ as coming in the flesh. This is the deceiver and the antichrist. Look out for yourselves, that YOU do not lose the things we have worked to produce, but that YOU may obtain a full reward. Everyone that pushes ahead and does not remain in the teaching of the Christ does not have God. He that does remain in this teaching is the one that has both the Father and the Son. If anyone comes to YOU and does not bring this teaching, never receive him into YOUR homes or say a greeting to him. For he that says a greeting to him is a sharer in his wicked works.

    2 John is referring to the antichrist and should not be applied across the board to all forms of sin, as done by the Watchtower Society.

    In order to justify their stance, the Watchtower describes those that stop being Witnesses as apostate and of the Antichrist, saying that "the word apostasy comes from a Greek word that literally means a standing away from but has the sense of desertion, abandonment or rebellion ... [and included] abandonment of right moral standards ... willfully abandoning the Christian congregation thereby become part of the 'antichrist." Watchtower 1985 Jul 15 p.31 In reality, many who stop being Witnesses continue to follow Jesus and Bible morals, but have come to believe that the Watchtower Society is not directed by Jesus.

    Interestingly, Johns advice here was not limited to former Christians. It included anyone denying Christ. This included Jews that rejected Jesus and people of the nations worshipping other Gods. Yet the Watchtower stance is to apply this only to Jehovah's Witnesses.

    The meaning of the phrase never receive him into YOUR homes should be understood in the context of the hospitality of first century Jerusalem. Since Christians held congregation meetings in their homes John possibly felt that inviting a denier of Christ into a home could be viewed as sharing worship with non-Christians.

    Likewise the term to never "say a greeting" needs to be understood in light of first century practice. The Watchtower wrongly claims that John used the term "greeting" to indicate a simple hello.

    "John here used khairo, which was a greeting like good day or hello. (Acts 15:23; Matthew 28:9) He did not use aspazomai (as in verse 13), which means to enfold in the arms, thus to greet, to welcome and may have implied a very warm greeting, even with an embrace. (Luke 10:4; 11:43; Acts 20:1, 37; 1 Thessalonians 5:26) So the direction at 2 John 11 could well mean not to say even hello to such ones." Watchtower 1988 April 15 p.27

    This article claims the word khairo is used to forbid a simple greeting, instead of aspazomai which means a more affectionate embrace, enfolding in the arms, kiss, greeting or welcome. The opposite is true. Strongs states;

    • 5463 chairo {khah'-ee-ro} 1) to rejoice, be glad 2) to rejoice exceedingly 3) to be well, thrive 4) in salutations, hail! 5) at the beginning of letters: to give one greeting, salute
    • 783 aspasmos {as-pas-mos} 1) a salutation, either oral or written

    2 John does not indicate a polite greeting is wrong. John here shows that a person is a sharer in the Antichrists wicked works if he shows acceptance and agreement with the evildoers cause or teachings, or wishes them favour and success.

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