Meeting with Elders, need help
Hello, my name is Robert and as you folks can tell I'm new to the forum. I'm a BA married to a JW and am meeting with 2 elders this Saturday to discuss Jesus Christ being Michael the Archangel. Any tips beyond the usual Daniel verses, and 1 Thessalonians, oh and of course Revelations. Left the one elder frustrated and angry the last time we got together a few months ago, he bringing another one with him this time. My heart truely breaks when I see good people like Keith (the frustrated elder) get sucked into the Society, not to mention my wife. It seems to me that witnesses dont do a whole lot of studying on their own, and seem to wait for either meetings or studies, to be fed. I could cry every time I see a person of any religion allow another human being to feed them instead of feeding themselves with the help of the councilor. God Bless all of you for sharing your stories and honesty, it gives me hope that my wife and her family may yet see the truth.
Don't give up 7robert7 - I'm sure they will 'see the light' eventually, especially if they have you helping them in the right direction.
Below is basically the resoning employed by the WTBS in their understanding of who Michael is. This excerpt is from the 'Reasoning' book which is published by them.
Is Jesus Christ the same person as Michael the archangel?
The name of this Michael appears only five times in the Bible. The glorious spirit person who bears the name is referred to as "one of the chief princes," "the great prince who has charge of your [Daniel's] people," and as "the archangel." (Dan. 10:13; 12:1; Jude 9, RS) Michael means "Who Is Like God?" The name evidently designates Michael as the one who takes the lead in upholding Jehovah's sovereignty and destroying God's enemies.
At 1 Thessalonians 4:16 (RS), the command of Jesus Christ for the resurrection to begin is described as "the archangel's call," and Jude 9 says that the archangel is Michael. Would it be appropriate to liken Jesus' commanding call to that of someone lesser in authority? Reasonably, then, the archangel Michael is Jesus Christ. (Interestingly, the expression "archangel" is never found in the plural in the Scriptures, thus implying that there is only one.)
Revelation 12:7-12 says that Michael and his angels would war against Satan and hurl him and his wicked angels out of heaven in connection with the conferring of kingly authority on Christ. Jesus is later depicted as leading the armies of heaven in war against the nations of the world. (Rev. 19:11-16) Is it not reasonable that Jesus would also be the one to take action against the one he described as "ruler of this world," Satan the Devil? (John 12:31) Daniel 12:1 (RS) associates the 'standing up of Michael' to act with authority with "a time of trouble, such as never has been since there was a nation till that time." That would certainly fit the experience of the nations when Christ as heavenly executioner takes action against them. So the evidence indicates that the Son of God was known as Michael before he came to earth and is known also by that name since his return to heaven where he resides as the glorified spirit Son of God.
Hope this helps.
-Seen it all, done it all, can't remember most of it-
Welocome to the board Robert!!! Good luck with the elder's. Please tell us what the outcome is.
The problem with arguing over doctrine is that you will NEVER succeed. When it comes to matters of faith in Biblical doctrines, it is not always possible to prove your point either way or beyond doubt in the mind of a reasonable person.
If you really want to involve them in a discussion, I would ask them pointed questions such as:
Do you believe all who are not Jehovah's Witnesses will be destroyed by God? What about me and little children? What will happen to them? Who will be destroyed? What makes a person "wicked" enough to be destroyed by God? Am I part of Satan's system? Who is being influenced by Satan? If I don't join, what will happen to me at Armageddon?
Who is directing Jehovah's Witnesses? How does Jesus direct them? How do we know that he is using them? What if someone that is a Witness comes to another conclusion after Bible study that is not the official teaching? What if a witness accepted an organ transplant when it was considered Cannibalism? Is that what you teach now? What about women who were removed from the religion for not screaming if they were raped? Does that sound loving? Does that make sense to you? Was higher education ever discouraged? How does that make sense in a religion that says they are all about "education"? Why do Jehovah's Witnesses not have beards? How is that supported Scripturally? Are you counting time right now talking to me?
Basically I would go this route as opposed to the "who is michael" route. They will likely try to down play the past, but you will be making a point. That they have to recall these things that have been suppressed and tell have truths to cover for the organization will make a significant psychological impact on them. Quite likely they will leave you alone after that. Otherwise, discussions on Michael etc, are simply good time wasters for them and just make them look good when they hand in their time slips.
I would also suggest picking up a book on Cults not mentioning Jehovah's Witnesses.. Then ask them questions from the book relating to Cults. If you are familiar with the religion, you should be able to draw a parallel to nearly all points in the book. Witnesses also will generally refuse to read any book on cults because inside they are aware that they belong to one.
Ask them if they ever read sources outside of their own publications. Ask them about sources that present and OPOSING viewpoint. You will see they only have considered one side of the issue and that while they are encouraging you to look at another side and have an open mind, they have a very CLOSED MIND. This is hypocrisy at its finest.
Even better, get Ray Franz's "In search of Christian Freedom" and pull it out right in front of them and ask questions based on that. I would give them 2 minutes from the point they see the book until they are out the door. Hypocrisy and mind control at it's finest.