Two Witness principle

by Rattigan350 11 Replies latest jw experiences

  • Rattigan350

    One thing that I agree with is the two or more witness principle.

    I have an experience to tell why.

    At work for lunch I go to my car and eat and read emails on my laptop (since I can't bring my laptop in). One day a HR director and my director told me about an occasion where I was in my car and a woman went out to her car that was next to me and left for lunch. She came back and pulled in a spot and saw that I was in my car to the left of her and what came to her mind was that I must have just pulled in after her and she felt uncomfortable with that and thinking that I was following her and she went to security. The fact was that I never left and she pulled in the same spot that she left and saw me still there and could not imagine that I was in my car when she left and was still in my car 20 or so minutes later when she pulled in the same spot. So she immediately thought something bad. I told them that security should have video of the parking lot, look at that and you will see that I didn't go anywhere. The two witness principle is good because people jump to the craziest conclusion because they can't conceive the truth and others listen to accusations more than the accused.

  • carla

    I don't think comparing some paranoid woman at work with child rape/molestation is a good example. In the case of child rape there often is scientific proof (hair samples, dna, semen, etc..) that the elders are more than willing to have it washed down the bathtub drain in order to protect their precious organization.

  • minimus

    Having a witness, a video or some substantiation is great but it shouldn't be absolute. When a wife accuses her husband of adultery, she does not to present two witnesses. If she had them, that's great but not absolutely necessary.

  • Island Man
    Island Man

    The two witness principle is good. What is terrible is the manner in which JWs implement it. JWs foolishly interpret the rule as applying only to two eye-witnesses. So when a vicitim of child molestation is the only eye-witness to the crime and the purpetrator fails to confess, they just drop the whole issue.

    What they should be doing is reporting the matter to the police so that they (the police) can carry out an investigation. If/when the police investigation and subsequent trial finds the perpetrator guilty then this can serve as the second witness needed to disfellowship the individual - even in absentia.

    By not reporting the crime of pedophilia to the police, JWs are showing lack of regard for the "superior authorities". They are following the two witness rule and showing lack of regard for the superior authorities rule. Instead they should marry the two principles by using the superior authorities as a second witness.

  • GoneAwol

    Elder dubs have, in the past, used the 2 witness scripture to automatically prove an accuser wrong. They also use it to shirk off any responsibility to do something about the accused by passing off all jurisdiction onto the bible. "the bible says you need 2 witnesses, therefore you must be wrong"

    Sorry, but the setting of your 2 witness "rule" is far fetched at the most. Its helped you out of a sticky situation in the past, so therefore it automatically must be good in any situation including horrific crimes such as child rape? mmm...

  • blondie

    Yes, that is an old rule...1977. I have only seen one brother try and use it to get out of his marriage scripturally. The problem was his wife was also a jw...his word against his...nothing in writing, so the BOE said his marriage was still intact until she died or it was proven she had committed adultery by the statement of 2 witnesses. Every time a new CO came he trotted it out again. The WTS tries to apply a law under the Jewish law code (that was nailed to the tree by Jesus) to Christians and a circumstance that only a man could use to get out of his marriage. No provision for a wife to accuse her husband of adultery and drag him off to a priest. The brother and sister above are still scripturally married to each other and approaching their early 80's. I wonder which one will die first leaving the other to remarry.

    *** w77 10/1 pp. 607-608 Questions From Readers ***

    ● My unbelieving husband admitted to me that he has another woman. Is his admission sufficient ground for a Scriptural divorce?

    In some cases if a Christian’s unbelieving mate admits to committing immorality, that would provide a Scriptural basis for a divorce, which, in turn, would free the innocent Christian for remarriage if desired.

    Jehovah God’s law to the ancient nation of Israel made provision for divorce on various grounds. (Deut. 24:1, 2) Adultery, homosexuality and bestiality were bases for ending a marriage; the guilty person was to be executed. (Deut. 22:22-24; Lev. 18:22, 23) However, the Law set forth this important requirement: “At the mouth of two witnesses or of three witnesses the one dying should be put to death. He will not be put to death at the mouth of one witness.” (Deut. 17:6; 19:15; Num. 35:30) Being a “lover of righteousness and justice,” Jehovah required that such matters be determined on the basis of proof, of witnesses, not merely suspicion. (Ps. 33:5) This, of course, was stated as regards applying the death penalty, not as regards a divorce action.

    Another situation dealt with in the Law also illustrates the importance of proof. What was a man to do if he suspected that his wife had committed adultery but she denied it and there were no witnesses? God’s law outlined a step that could be taken, but it was a drastic one that could have lasting effects for the wife if she was guilty or for the husband if she was innocent. She could be brought before the priest and made to share in a prescribed procedure involving drinking some special water. If she was guilty, she would experience the divine punishment of her ‘thigh falling away,’ apparently meaning that her sexual parts would atrophy and she would lose her ability to conceive. (Num. 5:12-31) Evidently in such cases the adulterous wife, though receiving this extraordinary punishment from God, because she denied guilt and there were not the required two witnesses, was not executed.

    What is the situation today in the Christian congregation? Is it possible to obtain substantial testimony as to the grounds for a Scriptural divorce?

    Jesus himself stated that for his followers the only ground for divorce, such as would free a person for remarriage, is if one’s mate commits porneia, gross sexual immorality. (Matt. 19:9) Would there be sufficient ground for divorce if a Christian wife merely suspected that her husband was guilty of adultery? No, for the Christian Greek Scriptures carry forward the principle of a matter’s being established by two or three witnesses, as a balanced sense of justice requires. (John 8:17, 18; 1 Tim. 5:19; Heb. 10:28) So, if a wife merely suspected her husband of adultery, but he denied it and there were no witnesses to confirm it, she would not have sufficient basis for establishing with the Christian congregation that she had a right to divorce him and thus be free to remarry.

    In some cases, though, an unbelieving mate admits to being immoral. A husband, for instance, might even boast of it to his wife as a taunt to hurt her. She might choose to overlook his waywardness. But what if she feels she cannot or should not? Is his confession enough proof?

    In this situation it is not as if he professes innocence or adamantly denies being guilty of adultery. Rather, he admits it to her, though for the sake of his reputation he might not be willing to own up to it in a court of law or before other persons. What can the wife do?

    Since she is part of the clean Christian congregation, she should realize the importance of handling the matter properly so that, after divorcing him, if she later remarried there would be no question about her keeping ‘the marriage bed without defilement.’ (Heb. 13:4) To that end she could give the elders representing the congregation a letter outlining her situation, stating that her unbelieving husband confessed to her that he had committed immorality. And she could state that in accord with Matthew 19:9 she wishes to put him away, obtaining a legal divorce and thus ending the marriage Scripturally and legally.

    The elders would consider whether there is any known reason to conclude other than that the unbelieving mate had been immoral. If not, they could accept her signed statement.

    ‘But,’ someone might say, ‘is it not possible to submit a deceptive, untruthful statement, saying that her husband confessed immorality when he actually never said that?’ Actually, it would be gross deception for anyone to try that. David once prayed: “You have examined my heart, you have made inspection by night, you have refined me; you will discover that I have not schemed.” (Ps. 17:3) Conversely, Jehovah is well aware when someone does scheme and He will make sure that the person does not lastingly succeed. Hence, if a Christian woman goes on record as stating that her husband has admitted immorality, Jehovah knows the facts. As the Bible says: “There is not a creation that is not manifest to his sight, but all things are naked and openly exposed to the eyes of him with whom we have an accounting.”—Heb. 4:13; Prov. 5:21; Jer. 16:17.

    So if there is no reason to doubt the wife’s statement, the congregation elders can leave the matter between her and Jehovah. In that case she would have to bear before God the responsibility as to the actuality of her husband’s immoral course, which would be the Scriptural basis for ending the marriage even if the legal divorce were obtained on some other ground.

  • jgnat

    The court of law has progressed since bible times. Evidence is allowed as a second witness. This helps with secret crimes such as child abuse where it would be the child's word against the perpetrator.

  • rebel8

    omg. I looked up the scripture blondie cited. WTH? Sounds like the Salem witch trials--if you drown, you're not a witch. It's amazing anyone could believe this shit.

    Then the priest shall bring her near and have her stand before the Lord , 17 and the priest shall take holy water in an earthenware vessel; and [e] he shall take some of the dust that is on the floor of the tabernacle and put it into the water. the hand of the priest is to be the water of bitterness that brings a curse. 19 The priest shall have her take an oath and shall say to the woman, “If no man has lain with you and if you have not gone astray into uncleanness, being under the authority of your husband, be [g] immune to this water of bitterness that brings a curse; 20 if you, however, have gone astray, being under the authority of your husband, and if you have defiled yourself ... this water that brings a curse shall go into your [i] stomach, and make your abdomen swell and your thigh [j] waste away.”

    ...Then he shall make the woman drink the water of bitterness that brings a curse, so that the water which brings a curse will go into her [l] and cause bitterness. ..b ut if the woman has not defiled herself and is clean, she will then be free and conceive [o] children.

    Or maybe they were poisoning these ladies. Can you imagine? Some manipulative jw makes up a story and you get poisoned.

  • Honesty

    Blondie's Watchtower quote said, "Since she is part of the clean Christian congregation" but how can the congregation be clean when it allows accused and convicted pedophiles to sit in its midst?

    How about people who have been publicly and privately reproved for committing acts the Watchtower Society say are gross sins?

    How can Jehovah's Witnesses claim to be in a "clean congregation" when they totally ignore 1 Corinthians 5:13 which commands them to Put away the evil person from among yourselves?

  • Island Man
    Island Man

    "omg. I looked up the scripture blondie cited. WTH? Sounds like the Salem witch trials--if you drown, you're not a witch. It's amazing anyone could believe this shit."

    And notice how sexist it is. It only makes provision for the man who suspects his wife. It does not reciprocate by making provision for the woman who suspects her husband.

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