by The Searcher 59 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • justmom

    . If "alien residents" could not become participants (only beneficiaries) of the Law Covenant because they were not"natural Israelites", then why were Rahab and Ruth (both pagan worshippers) assimilated into God's nation and allowed to corrupt the Messianic lineage?

    Hello Dear Searcher

    It may have already been covered but this thought and question I too had asked once. The answer I was given is that "the alien residents COULD become participants in the new covenant, not just beneficiaries. Even though they were not natural Israel they still benefited in the wilderness and at 1Corinthians 10: 1-5 "They ALL were baptized, they ALL ate and drank from the same rockmass, they ALL ate the manna from heaven which represented "CHRIST" and this is reiterated again in John 6:31-59 when Christ was telling his disciples that He was "The Bread of Life" and that ANYONE can eat his flesh and drink his blood (partake or communion)

    We know it is recorded that they entered into this covenant with Moses as the mediator in 539 b.c.e. (think this the date) on Mount Sinai. And that in John 10:16 Christ mentions "Other Sheep" not of the Little flock (fold) and that THEY, the other sheep which would correspond to the alien residents or the great crowd would enter into this fold and BECOME "ONE FLOCK" together under ONE Shephard. It does not separate them as the WT continually does every year at the memorial when they read this.

    Something I just wanted to share as I wondered this also at one time.



  • AGuest
    Someone who translates and gives connotation to Greek words should have an advanced degree in Greek or cite to a standard, reconigzed reference work.

    Or maybe just know how to read... and use... a Greek lexicon. Or, wait... maybe you mean like, say, Fred Franz.

    After the WTBTS. always ask hard questions. Demand proof. Beware people who speak with authority.

    Yes! Like THIS:

    B/c of my Witness experience, I have studied academic work on the New Testament, Christology, mysticism, and church history. I studied under Elaine Pagels at Columbia University. I can assure you one thing from my studies which I have continued, altho my profession is in a different field.

    And so, because of this YOU are an "authority," so... folks you ask YOU. Right? I mean, that's what it looks like you're saying to ME: "Beware of people who speak with authority... I am an authority... and here's why I am and so speak with authority"... Now, since MY itty bitty brain was able to "hear" what you said... I am SURE those of the more... mmmmm... "intelligent"... among us "heard" you, too.

    Oh, but wait... that's not what you MEANT, was it? No? So, okay, go ahead... tell us what you MEANT ("Well, see, I didn't mean, I mean, what I meant... see, it was like... well, what it was, was..."). Ch'eah... right.

    There is such a vast body of knowledge that I know very little.

    Well, FINALLY! Some TRUTH from one'a ya'll!! OH... most HAPPY... day! Perhaps what was once lost CAN be found! There is hope for you, yet!

    When someone states a certain propostion, look for external validation.

    Like all of your credentials? You know, like the ones you've said you "refuse" to share on here... but keep throwing about as if folks should just take your word for granted? THOSE propositions? Look, girl: I trust you. I believe you went the schools you say did, read the books you say you have, studied under whoever you say you studied. It can be a bit confusing when you say one thing as to your faith one day/thread, then what seems to be completely another on another day/thread. But I get that: that is how religions (and those who study about/teach them) TEACH you to be with faith - THEY don't know what it is... so they can't really teach YOU what it is... so, you don't REALLY know "what" it is... OR "what" you believe. Heck, what TO believe.

    But I don't have that dilemma... because I didn't receive my faith in or belief as to God and Christ... FROM religion. Or from those who study/teach it. I received it directly from God, through Christ. As Peter did ("Flesh and blood did not reveal it to you, but my FATHER, who is in the heavens did!"). Now, I don't begrudge you YOUR ignorance. Why, though, do you begrudge me what you believe to be mine? Believe what you believe, girl... and more power to you. But quit trying to "come at" me as you do. Because YOU know you can't take it when I respond.

    Does it makes sense to you at a gut level?

    Good question... and everyone SHOULD ask themselves; however, that it doesn't doesn't make it untrue... does it? Human evolution (from lower life forms) doesn't make sense to ME at MY gut level... or to MANY at theirs. Yet, there are those who are ADAMANT that it's true. So..

    People here claim personal revelation. I can't dispute personal revelation.

    Yet, you keep trying to do so. Another show of your own confusion. Yet, you point the finger away from yourself.

    It is highly unlikely but faith is not very rational.

    Faith does not require something to be LIKELY. I mean, what is the LIKELIHOOD that a man is put to death, only to raise himself up FROM that death... because of the authority given him to do so? Yet, I bet YOU celebrate "Good Friday"... as well as "Easter." If so... WHY? Because a bunch of other folks do? A bunch of other folks pray toward the east 5 times a day, too. And another bunch of folks don't eat beef. And another bunch of folks...

    The problem is the arrogant statements that are so similar to the WT.

    You mean like: "I have studied academic work on the New Testament, Christology, mysticism, and church history." Wasn't that similar to the "credentials" that caused people to ooh and ahh over Frederick Franz? Student of Theology (and so, most probably the NT, Christology, and church history; though, probably not mysticism, but who knows?). Rhodes Scholar candidate... turned down Oxfored... etc.? The world in not only FULL of people who've studied such things... but schools and seminaries and "Gileads" started by them. So... what?

    Ask questions, do your own research. Despite the academic and recreational study, I found the most positive input for me was that, if I accep the Bible is unique, sitting with the Bible and reading it myself. We don't cherish our gut instincts enough.

    By ALL means: DO research. DO ask questions. Just not of MAN... including you OR me. Because MAN can't answer them. Goodness, why do you think you HAVE all of the differing POVs? Because of all the DIFFERING men/women who deign to provide answers to things they have absolutely NO clue about! But there is One who says, "Come to ME!" Who says "KEEP asking... it WILL be opened to you!"

    This is... none one has taught YOU... as to how it IS "opened." Yet, it's right there in plain view... for ALL to see. They... and you... CAN'T see it, though... because you are still BLIND. You refuse to buy eyesalve ("No, nope, God... I don't need you or your Son to show or tell me ANYTHING. See, I'm SO smart, I can figure it all out by myself. And if I can't... I'll go ask that guy over there. What? Well, no, he can't figure it out, either... but, well, we'll just try to figure it together, him and me. What? YOU can show me? Hmmmmm... ummmm... no, no thank you. We're good.").

    But... you're not good. At all. You are still blind. You... and that one YOU went to for "sight." Even though he has none to give you.

    Hardly any of the WT made any sense on a gut level even when I was a child. Yet I wanted to be loved by my parents and other relatives. People with good faith generally do not preach.

    Ummmm... then you're ruling out a WHOLE lotta folks in the Bible... which is the ONLY "source" YOU have for even knowing about faith. Noah... Abraham... Moses... the Prophets... John the Baptist... the Apostles... Paul... even Christ himself. Oh, but wait... you're not a "christian"... right? Somehow, I thought you said you were... or at least want others to think you are...

    Academics specialize in a few areas. Asking hard questions is so important to protect against other cults.

    Yep, and academics know God... and Christ... better than God and Christ know themselves. Yes, that makes sense.

    Personally, I do not believe in any single answer.

    Maybe that's what's standing in your way, then - that you prefer "every wind of teaching"... rather than just one simple truth.

    Everyone has a different personality and life experiences. Trust yourself.

    The first is true. The second can prove dangerous. Has for many. Indeed, I'm sure your own parents trusted themselves, that their belief that certain men WEREN'T lying to them was accurate. And look what that got YOU.

    With the Internet, sources can be referenced. When one explains scripture, ask what their background is.

    And if that "background" is holy spirit? Then what? I will tell you: they can either ask for some of that spirit themselves, so as to know... or not. Easy-peasy.

    My church believes personal revelation is possible as does the Roman Catholic Church.

    That what the HECK is your problem when others have such?

    When I was 21, I stumbled upon this church gem. I was so wary after the Witnesses that I blurted out my anger and questions. The priest responded that he had the very same questions I had. He remarked that church was not a place of smug belief but a community of people askiing the same hard questions as a community.

    Well, that's his take... and he's entitled. It's his church, after all. So, he's entitled to spout his "wisdom" there. Others have other takes... and spout there wisdom in THEIR churches. MY understanding, however, is that the church (of God/Christ) is not a place... but a group of people: the Body of Christ, which is the congregation of that Christ, the Firstborn (from the dead), His Bride, New Jerusalem... made up of LIVING stones... which people constitute the "temple" of God... in which He, by spirit, dwells... and so not some hand-made temple... or hall... or cathedral... or abbey... or building... and there are no priests (not yet), pastors, popes, bishops, friars, reverends, governing body, district overseers, circuit overseers, councils... or other leaders... except ONE: Christ, the HOLY One of Israel and Holy Spirit.

    Someone invaded a thread marked "for active JWs only" looking for fresh recruits.

    First, YOU are here... on that same thread. So, unless you are an "active witness"... YOU are a hypocrite. Second, you're a liar and a slanderer, unless perhaps you're speaking as to yourself "looking for fresh recruits." Third, apparently you can read hearts. In which case, we should all follow you. Which makes you the one looking for recruits. Which, fourth... makes YOU a hypocrite.

    I find it sad that someone would so intrude.

    Blind hypocrite. YOUR intrude on threads that are specifically directed to specific posters... all the time. YOU can't stay off/away from threads that have absolutely NOTHING to do with you... even when they specifically ASK you to.

    My commercial is over.

    Oh, please. For now. You will be back up on you "Omigawd, I went to such and so Ivy League school and studied under such and so professor and attend such and so church in such and so big town... and so I am SO offended and seeing red!" soapbox in less than half a day, if not sooner.

    Trust yourself. Empower yourself.

    YES, dear ones! As to ALL you hear... from ALL whom you hear it FROM! And if you're not sure... ASK! But don't ask MAN... ASK the One who says to you "Come to ME! ASK... and it WILL be opened to you!"

    We are good. This repartee make seem harsh but it is much more relaxed than the uniformity of the WTS.

    Not according to you that last time you were "upset and offended and seeing red."

    And yes, sometimes I miss the uniformity.

    Ahh, THAT's explains all the flip-flopping. Well, that and perhaps those moments where you lack lucidity...

    It passes quickly, though.

    Not quick enough, though, girl, not quick enough. There is help out there, though: a Light. If you want it.

    A slave of Christ,


  • EntirelyPossible

    Oh well, another thread derailed.

  • Band on the Run
    Band on the Run

    I feel so bad for the OP. What do you do - let someone use such a thread as a recruitment drive unchallenged and see the thread destroyed. Do you point out that she has no academic credentials or any special insight to warn people and hence, destroy the thread. Either way, it is destroyed. If this were the only thread, it would still be sad. This happens frequently.

    I don't claim to know Greek without using a reference. Nor do I claim special Bible knowledge. No, I freely admit what cannot be known. I don't fully create the image of Christ in my brain. Note that I said to trust your instincts.

    If you believe that fire can destroy a spirit, assuming that spirit exist, worship a specific person's God. You've had the GB version. Search for answers. This board is in sorry need of Christian believers now. Someone who has been out of the Witnesses for a very long time broke the OP's thread to recruit people.

    If a Greek chorus is needed, I will be the chorus. I have never seen a classical Greek play performed in my life. It is one of my future goals.

  • soft+gentle


    where is searcher?

  • soft+gentle

    hey the searcher - just to explain in case you were wondering. In post 1055 I was simply following through on the implications your question raised and taking those implications all the way to the ambivalent position of the WTS rather than being sarcastic as such.

    please come back to your thread - it is a good one

  • Band on the Run
    Band on the Run

    I have stated my credentials many times here. After attending a very bad ghetto school in Newark, NJ I decided to attend Barnard College, Columbiia University, on generous scholarships. I graduated magma cum laude with Distinction in Political Science. While I was at Barnard, I studied with Elaine Pagels of Gnostic fame, Margaret Mead, and many other profs notable in their fields. My Indian Studies prof read erotic Sanskrit on the local pacifist radio network.

    After graduation, I applied to law school. I was on the waiting list at Columbia Law, but NYU Law offered me a full merit scholarsihp. The word of mouth concerning the social atmosphere at NYU Law was amazing. It is located in Greenwich Village. I lived facing Washington Sq. Park. Besides the prestigious scholarship that was alloted to only a handful of students, I did well academically. I was a member of Annual Survey of American Law. I wrote one of the first articles on sexua harassment as a cause of action under Title VII, the basic civl rights statute.

    I clerked for the United States Senate Subcommittee on the Constitution, the U.S. Attorney's Office (S.D.N.Y.) and the N.O.W. Legal Defense Fund. I've worked on four separate landmark civl rights decisions before the U.S. Supreme Court. The U.S. Attorney's Office assigned me to work on the most important case that was pending, an internatinal organized crime case involving quite a list of characters. The Vatican was implicated.

    During my second summer and after graduation, I was a lawyer with a major Wall St. law firm. The firm is global. I represented multinational corporations and foreign governments. I had reservations about the work. It was always one massive corp. against another massive corp. They sent the large corp. vs. single human cases to other secondary law firms.

    I've been a Democratic activist since high school. In fact, I sneaked out of my father's house to work in Eugene McCarthy's primary campaign.

    My biggest credentials are my love of learning, a respect for knowledge, understanding of poverty and working class cultures, and the sophistication that comes from living in Manhattan long term. Hard questions were valued in my education. I could never turn in a term paper or legal memo and say "Christ told me." Ignorance terrifies me. People scamming other people is very sad. I do have introspection.

    For example, I would find Christ telling me exactly what I want to hear indicates that I need to see a medical doctor. Although it is not the Christ authority itself which bothers me. The arrogance of telling others what Christ tells them to do is beyond even the WTBTS. It ranks with David Koresh and Charles Manson.

    The best musical group of all time, the Beatles. Windows on the World the perfect restaurant. Paris as culture. Yes, I would have doubts. I would not broadcast it. If I told my family or friends that Christ was speaking to me, I can guarantee you that they would take me to Bellevue.

    This voice hearing is not innocent.

  • AGuest

    Paul boasted a long list that included His education, credentials and accomplishments, too. Still didn't make him one of the 12, though (and certainly didn't endear him to them!), and so not one of the "12 foundation/gates" of God's temple. Nope. To the contrary, that education, credentials, and perception of his accomplishment only led HIM... to persecute the Christ... by persecuting, indeed, even calling for and overseeing the deaths of MANY of those who said the Christ spoke to them. Like Stephen. Goodness, he was a Pharisee, was he not, having studied under THE foremost teacher of the time, Gamaliel... and so an intellectual force to be reckoned with? Sure and he was.

    But, Paul heard Christ speak, too, eventually ("Who are you, Lord?"), in spite of all of his persecution, perhaps even murder, of those who professed Christ first. He didn't hear, though... until after he had become bloodguilty for a LOT of people, for which he had to be smacked upside the head with a light that left him blind and afflicted in his flesh. By then, though, the only service require from HIM... was to SUFFER for the Christ. And suffer he did. From that point he not only couldn't see and so had to depend on others to see and write for him... he had to spend a life of poverty, and suffer beatings, stonings, incarcertaion... and finally being put to death. ALL... for the SAME reason that he accused those whose deaths HE had called for: hearing the Christ.

    So, while his education, credentials, and accomplishments garnered him great respect among his Pharisaical peers and the temple priests, it was of absolutely NO value... among the men of Israel, the Apostles, before Rome/Caesar... or to Christ himself. Didn't make him any more "valuable" to ANY of these... nor save his life.

    In the end, it will be his faith that saves him... just as it will that which will save the lowly fishermen, tax collectors, and others of FAITH... and not their worldly education, credentials, and accomplishments.

    An education can be a WONDERFUL thing (I know... I have one). Just depends on how one uses it: to glorify themselves, as done here... or to glorify God... by using to understand this world and how it fits with God's will and purpose. You choose the former, I choose the latter. Now, we'll both just have to wait see to which of our respective "masters" we stand... or fall.

    In the meantime, it might be good for one to consider this, from Psalm 32:8-11:

    I shall make you have insight and instruct you in the way you should go. I will give advice with my eye upon you.

    Do not make yourselves like a horse or mule without understanding, Whose spiritedness is to be curbed even by bridle or halter Before [they] will come near to you.”

    Many are the pains that the wicked one has; But as for the one trusting in JaHVeH, loving-kindness itself surrounds him."

    May you have ears to hear... even eyes so as to see... so as to get the sense of these things... if you wish them.

    A slave of Christ,


  • Band on the Run
    Band on the Run

    I did not self study. It was always as part of a community. A community of very bright students destined for PhDs or professional school. It was a community where questions were more important than answers. My high school was a sad joke. I learned crtical thinking skills. It is interesting to note that the LSATS, the required test for law school admission requires critical thinking skills. This may be how the better ranked law schools self-select even more than the actual instruction. I learned as much from my peers as from any prof. This culture permeated everything. We questioned recreational books. Before college when I read a book for recreation, I liked it or did not like it. After college I could figure out why I did not like it.

    I constantly refer to Pagels because it was the most freeing experience of my life. We did not just write notes. Since she was a woman and not too much older than us, the women would stay after class and discuss women's issues in the Bible and in our churches/temples. We cried. She exposed us to the entire field of scholarship, not just her pet subjects or theories. Her opinion was always clearly stated as opinion.

    One of my law school profs listened as I told her about the experiences of my former roommate who transferred to the Univ. of Missouri. Unlike at NYU Law, she was attending law school and working full-time. She was now receiving straigtht As rather than Cs. The students were actually prepared for class, even second and third year students. Elaine scoffed at it. Oh, they called profs by their last name. She shrugged off the straightr As (which I could not). If students acted the same way at NYU Law, she told me she would transfer to another law school.

    None of this is exceptional for most of my class mates and colleagues. It was life changing and shocking to me. My corporate law practice did not want a deferential lawyer. They truly wanted to know my personal opinion. Pakistani lawyers can research and report the law at a much lower salary. Lexis will evolve into such a service. Fast Case is almost there.

    What I find exceptional and makes me wonder is that you listed exciting books that you enjoyed only a few days ago. I was very impressed. Their was no air of authority. NO Christ speaking to you. You shared what moved you. How does someone graduate college and law school and believe that Christ is speakiing to them. I've never heard you discuss your feelings concerning the exclusive channel.

    When you claim Christ talking to you, it excludes all conversation. Scripture has no meaning to you. You cite scripture to prove your point and dismiss it when it does not. You could never have graduated law school if you approached law in a similar manner. Perhaps you took the CA bar, which is extrmely difficult, after you claim to hear Christ. It would be nice to have conversations with you. You are the only regular member of this forum that I find it imjpossible to converse with to any extent. It is not the voices. We are human.

    I would rather grapple with questions and be part of a community. Unlike you, subjects ooh and aahing my statements would revolt me. I want social and intellectual interaction with other people.

    Why would someone with both college and law school educations resort to ghetto talk? It makes sense within a community. I wrote how I wanted to shoot myself when the housing project students spoke. Valuable class time was wasted as the teachers constantly corrected them. I thought they were lazy and why did not their parents speak correctly so they spoke correctly. No one on TV or radio spoke that way. It was such a pleasure to start college and be removed from the language destroyers. Well, years later I am reading wikipedia and follow a link to Ebonics or something. There was a chart. They were not speaking English. They were speaking a West African language. If I were teaching such students, I would treat it as ESL and strive to learn their language so I could teach them to be fluent in both.

    Speaking ghetto is not part of being black. It is bullying, IMO.

    Furthermore, for the record, I do not take recreational drugs. I did try marijuana when I was younger but I had inhalation problems. It was simpler to decline than have people laughing at me. It is no one's business what medication my doctor prescribes. In fact, I do believe if we took a poll here, people would find it more likely that you do drugs than that I do.

    My posts speak for themselves. The most casual observer can detect who asks questions and has no trouble dealing with complexity. I do not think you are evil. My hunch is that you fooled around with a persona that it is strikingly different from your real life one. There is so much you can contribute to this forum. The books you read, the films you watch and enjoy, all indicate an educated person with some sophistication. Why do so many people turn off their thinking caps when confronting God or the concept of God.

    As for my having traits similar to Paul, thank you for the massive compliment. Before I read Paul and commentaries, I despise Paul wtih every ounce of my being. All the Wt did was rant Paul said this thing that I hated. Paul said that. Some of the most beautiful and soaring language on earth was written by Paul and I still want to throw up when I hear it or read it. B/c of Pagels and my own interest, I felt safer after law school to actually read Paul. If you skip the letters he did not write, Paul is wondeful. If you study the culture of the time, he was not such a miscogynist. Some scholars even refer to him as a feminist. Christianity would not exist today were it not for Paul. Well, maybe someone else would have arrived on the scene.

    Paul asserted his credentials b/c he was warring with other factions. Those credentials are the reason Paul had the tools and intellect so that we know Paul today and don't even know the names of most of the Twelve. Wow, such a compliment.

    I could suggest books or articles that might fascinate you if we could be colleagues/peers. You could tell me your interests. I completely reject your legitimacy as some leader/definer of God for anyone else but yourself. To do so is not bullying. I give you more credit than you do. Everyone here is so tired of the battles. Join the rest of the world. We do not hear Christ but Christ may work in our lives.

    Your own experiences, what you disliked as a Witness, your favorite scriptures-- I do believe everyone would respect you and enjoy your insights. If you can lower yourself to our clutzy level, I am certain you would be embraced.

  • soft+gentle

    I guess a question to ask now is

    would the gospel of Mathew's Jesus have accepted an olive branch from the gospel of John's Jesus? I don't think so but I could be wrong. Not being sarcastic or troublemaking as this is a genuine question that i was posing to myself. NO was the reply I received, the gospels' Jesus is himself divided and I guess this is a good thing.

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