Not very zealous as before
What I sense from the conversations of my family members and relatives who are JWs is that at least some JWs are not as zealous before with regard to the major subjects such as “sanctification of God’s name,” “vindication of His sovereignty” etc. They begin to feel that such subjects are imaginary issues.
This is a good sign. It shows people are worried about their own day-to-day worries. JWs invite people to their fold saying “Bible helps us to improve our quality of life in this problem-filled world.” Once interested ones are inside they are taught some imaginary problems God is facing and we are asked to help Him come out of the mess Satan has dragged Him into! People long to hear practical helps on questions as ‘How does one deal with the ups and downs of life and face challenges from selfish people with strength and presence of mind? ….etc.’ They need clarity: The cause of unhappiness is never the situation, but it is all about the thought. Therefore, separate the thought from the situation and let the thought find its balance in the equanimity of stillness. Right living comes from right thinking, for it is thoughts that ultimately get translated into action.
Such teachings would make people feel that they are already in paradise.
... some JWs are not as zealous before with regard to the major subjects such as “sanctification of God’s name,” “vindication of His sovereignty” etc. They begin to feel that such subjects are imaginary issues.
The two issues you post about above are the "fake news" that the WT trots out for public consumption. It even sounds cool because of the big religious sounding words. It's still fake news.
1. The first point is easily dispelled in the statement that "there is no other name besides Jesus in which we get saved".
2. Jesus didn't come to vindicate Jehovah's sovereignty .... whatever that means. He "came so people could have life, and have life more abundantly"
It is not surprising that members are unmotivated by such useless cliches as: sanctification of God’s name & vindication of His sovereignty.
I agree with you, and I have no problem with the purpose you associate with Jesus. I was trying to make the point that many have started realizing that why they are associating with certain org as they now feel that such ones work like Insurance Companies. When we are approached by them, we would feel that how much care Ins Cos are showing. But when we go to them with a genuine claim, they do everything so that we do not get compensation, or would at least delay it as far as possible. Similarly, religious entities give the impression that they exist for our happiness; but once we are in, we realize that we exist for their happiness—like some anchor caught in rock, they chain our minds to word-bound talk.
Despite my firm and confirmed disbelief, I will sort of echo what Perry said and state that the general message from the New Testament is that Jesus came to save sinners- save them from God the Father.
The various ways that people believe that can be argued about.
But I only mention that because Jehovah's Witnesses are tired getting into arguments about that. They have morphed into "Jehovah loves us, Jesus loves us. Christianity is wrong. The end is near." The average JW today really doesn't have a better understanding than that. Sure, older ones have recollections of Freddy Franz writings and teachings from Revelation and they retain that stuff enough to "just know" that Watchtower is (or at least WAS) right.
Being a JW is about being "right" while everyone else is "wrong." So your average JW today just knows that patriotism, holidays, sex outside of marriage, getting drunk, celebrity 'worship, all that stuff of the world is just wrong. They don't even bother to understand what is "right." They just know Watchtower is right.
It's pretty easy to get members to believe so much is wrong about "the world" and by the time they get lost in doctrines, they just go along because Watchtower was right about morality and the world.
A few trends among JWs I have observed consistently since the 1980s.
1. They know less and less about their doctrines.
2. They care less and less.
3. They go on the ministry less.
4. They take it less seriously.
5. They talk less and less about paradise.
6. They act less and less as if they believe Armageddon is coming soon.
Just when you think they can't get more apathetic and unenthusiastic, they put it down another notch. It's not the religion it once was. Vindication of what? Sanctify the who? They don't care.
Of course they know less about their doctrines. They keep making them so complicated, often contradicting itself, that it is impossible to even have a single set of doctrines. And they keep changing them.
Case in point: Back in the late 1980s, I was able to hold my own against someone that was a devout Pentecostal. No, he never became a jokehovian. But, at least I was able to defend my beliefs until the hounders decided that the call, going nowhere, was a waste of time. No threat to my beliefs, just a waste of time. Now, the slightest resistance is a threat to one's faith.
yes, of course all your points lead to an impending Great Tribulation for the org , as faithful elders pass away, and willing replacements of any quality are not 'reaching out' at the expense of themselves. Good reason for some rationalisation of congregations to make use not of the KH but willing brothers qualified to be MS or Elders, and by qualified I mean not Qualified to be Ministers, but Qualified to Serve the organisations ever convoluted theorems and constant appeals for money. Said it before but my father in laws grandfather build the local circuit in this area back in days of Russell, they WOULD NOT have sacrificed virtually everything for this ramshackle collection of errors and ' it was once thoughts' !
Whether they say it or not, many of the old school jw's that I know have seen the 'hand writing on the wall' so to speak.
They see the borg building lavish new headquarters in various places, they see the dumbed down message, they see the reduction in meetings, they see the sever reduction in the printing of 'bible' literature, they see the borg going 'hollywood' with their message in video and deep down inside I think they are saying WTF! They have traded the zeal for the real!
i think the loyality assembly last summer really was a punch in the teeth. For all the dubs trying to deny it isnt a cult and to produce something that disgustingly cultish. It seems to suck the soul out of a few dubs i know. There really was no way to put a positive spin on that.
You put it very rightly:
"It's not the religion it once was"--something which JW members are yet to discern!