"Yes, it is very likely that a scholarly presentation for the historical and biblical validity for 607 will be presented."
At least now you admit that nothing of the sort has ever been presented before by saying "it is very likely that a scholarly presentation ...will be presented." You do seem to be farther along in this inquiry than many, perhaps the majority of, JWs who still believe that there already has been secular or scholarly support for 607 BCE. Many JWs consider my father a scholar although his education and profession was in engineering. He was one of those who once believed 607 had at least some scholarly support, and was quite surprised when he discovered there wasn't any. My grandmother once told me: "If 1914 is wrong, then we're in the wrong religion." I'm now seeing that for many JWs, it still is almost that important, and this attitude will only force a delay in the time when the WTS drops it completely.
Rolf Furuli is shortly to publish research on this subject and this should be compared with the Jonsson hypothesis.
I'm sure it will be. You make it sound as if you've never read C.O.Johnnson's "hypothesis" or you would realize that you've used the wrong word. At its core, Johnsson's work is an exposure of the consistent differences between various secular, scholarly sources and the Watchtower's position. For me, the main point was that if we are to claim that 539 BCE is an "absolute date" (in the words of the Wt) then 587/6 must also be an "absolute date" for the destruction of Jerusalem, (i.e., if you accept the Wt criteria for an absolute date). By Watchtower criteria, 607 BCE must be "absolute"-ly wrong!
Your comments about the affect of Jonsson's treatise on those at Bethel are probably correct but do not think for a moment that Brother Franz could not have blown it apart if he felt inclined. Brother Franz was one of the most formidable Bible scholars of the last century and it is difficult to imagine that any person could put something past him.
Then you didn't know Brother Franz. He felt very inclined and simply couldn't. I got the impression that he was really quite angry about it. My impression was that he seemed so shaken by it, that I started to believe he actually knew that 607 was wrong and that it could never be supported -- and I wasn't the only one. That was very difficult for me. And it wasn't that I saw 607 and 1914 as such a big problem, just because the JWs were wrong on a key piece of chronology; for me it wasn't the core of the religion. I stayed for about 5 years, knowing full well that the chronology was unsupported and believing without any doubt that it was plain wrong. The real problem for me was being asked to be deliberately dishonest about this and other things. I had for years thought that Fred Franz was at least sincere, if mistaken. His reaction, however, has made me wonder for how long he may have had doubts about the JW chronology.
Also, I'm not trying to put Fred Franz down as unscholarly. I was very impressed by his memory and knowledge of scholarly issues. I interviewed him twice (and Grace DeCecca, and others) and still have all the original cassettes. He especially had an impressive memory for the New World Translation, and many of the translation issues that came up over the years. I must say though, that while he seemed competent enough in Hebrew, his translation decisions were not always based on sound evidence. I think Furuli has perhaps unintentionally exposed that about him already.
You might not realize it, but anyone who has been a JW for more than 30 years has already abandoned several of Fred Franz' ideas.
The treatise submitted by Jonsson is simply rubbish and only succeeds in demonstrating the efforts that some will go to to undermine a very accurate methodology for establishing secure biblical dates. There is clear historical and biblical evidence for 607 just as it nicely provides prophetic implications for the Gentile Times concluding in 1914.
Calling a treatise "rubbish" doesn't seem very "scholarly." Believe me, I know that the nature of the forum is often conducive to this type of trash-talk, so I won't hold it against you. But it's so easy to call something rubbish and give no evidence in context that you ever even read it. Also, to claim again that there is clear historical and biblical evidence for 607 is not "scholarly" unless you can back it up. Claiming that someone else (Furuli) will back it up in the near future is not evidence, as you must already know.
For the record, such as it is in an anonymous forum, my own formal education is not in "Religious Studies." I do have formal education in Hebrew (3 years) and Greek, but at a level which barely enhances my own enjoyment of scholarly works by others; I can't honestly claim to be a scholar myself. I'll risk adding that I'm a bit surprised and even skeptical at seeing those degrees in Religious Studies by your signature. It must be very rare among JWs, even if they took Religious Studies before becoming JWs. Did you get yours after?
(Edited to try to fix up the "quote boxes")