So why do the JWs believe the elders are appointed by God? It's a fundamental question for someone who can take away your wife [SNAP!], other family members [SNAP!], friends [SNAP!] and fellow worshippers like that [SNAP!] If GB members really were God's chosen and appointed servants, I could at least understand why they might revere them and their appoints, but the GB has been denying inspiration and revelation for years, right?
May active JW's dont actually believe that elders are appointed by God. I never did, and others my age in private conversation would openly say that they cant be appointed by God because brother so-and-so has been appointed even though we know he's still doing you-know-what with you-know-who. Many people put up with their bullying nature because it's safer not to rock the boat. In order to disfellowship and ruin your family bond they'd need a Judicial Committee of three elders. But a single elder would have some clout in influencing others to not associate with you. If you had an opinion of a scripture and and elder had another, everyone would go with the elders opinion. The congregation mistakenly think that elders have such a great knowledge of the scriptures, which really isnt the case (in my congregation i was the go-to person for biblical knowledge, even by elders. But i'd still tell them check up on what i tell them.)
My mum, for example, has a reverential fear of elders. She fawns over their wives and goes out of her way to be connected in any way to an elders family.