New to the group - I have a couple questions to get started with!!
I would like to have a child, but she is being persuaded (by...guess who) that now would not be a good time to bring kids into the world. You know - end being so near and all
Calamity has said a mouthful but I will say that I was told the same crap, my babies are now 18 and 20 and I have a 9 month old grandbaby. If I had listened I would have missed out on the most joyful fufilling time in my life. Don't let them take that Joy from you that is just one of the many they will try to steal. Read my profile it says a mouthful.
bk62 Welcome to the board.
I am calamityjanes hubby. ( CJ ) I am always a bit resistant to post to these kind of threads, not because I don't care, but because I've seen so many current jw's post a question or a sob story... describing how bad their life is (was). And as the thread carries on, one realizes that they are indeed deceivers.....trolls as we call them, their only purpose to be able to "count time in the Field Service ".
I hope you are not one of those.
CJ dragged me over to the computer to read your post. Everything she said is soooo true.
I respond to your post only because I repsect Francois, he responded first and it is seldom I disagree with what he posts. What Frank has said is true, and if you search his posts on this board, you will see....he speaks wisdom due to his experiences.
YES. Take it slow and steady. Research all you can. DO NOT rely just on this board for your answers, but use the links to do further research. Unfortunately, you do not not have the luxury to research the WBTS own's publications, but the jehovah's-witnesses quotes web page is very informative and very easy to peruse.
I feel you love your wife very much, ( as I love mine, and I would do anthing to SAVE her ) and we hope the help you have requested on this board, and the information you will find will help both of you to contentment and peace.
Regards xjw_b12 and calamityjane
" I just want to know the truth, because I've been lied to all my life " cj
"knowing they will not be able to "convert" me, they will then go after my wife and try to turn her against me"
If your wife becomes a JW, and you do not, this is exactly what will happen.
By the way, WELCOME!. Enjoy your stay.
What I would recommend is go into the archives and pull out some old threads started by Maximus, AlanF and Farkel. You could start with these:
Keep yourself ok - you'll probably live happily ever after until you interfere with her jwism - if you question and insist on real truth, she won't just pick between her religion or not, but rather, between you and her own sanity and fears.
Just keep yourself and plant little seeds - if you make an issue of it, it really will be - the main issue - it's a personal thing - some don't mind their kids being jw - others would rend their clothing - I'd be rending my clothing as if God had personally cursed me.
I'm really sorry to hear about your situation. It angers me everytime I hear that the JWs got their claws into one of my brothers loved ones. I only have three relatives that aren't JW. If you really care about your wife then you need to attend the meetings with her and not let them get her alone. As long as you are there she is less prone to being brain washed because she will see it has no effect on you. You can also dismantle what they present to her when you are alone with her. You still have the advantage unless she has been studying too long. If she hasn't then you can prevent her from falling in further but you have got to hold her hand through it.
I don't know how long she has been studying or what they have told her so far but you need to get her the facts NOW before it is too late.
the best information I have seen reguarding the JWs is at www.carm.org
I was raised a JW myself. I can't believe I was so convinced they were the 'truth'.
You have two options:
1) Burn all bridges. Divorce, move, and flee! Leave no addresses!
2) More seriously, if you are ready for the long road, be ready. Study this board. Don't be swayed by their poison. Buy Crisis of Conscience in the Spanish and have it iin the house. With patience, you can win. My prayers go with you.
This includes several elders - one of who performed our marriage!!
This is so very unusual! Normally, the only marriages conducted by JW's are between two baptized JW's. If a marriage is specifically disapproved of (any relationship where the partners have different beliefs) no JW's will attend. Yes, I would say these friendly and loving people that are studying with you have an agenda. They want both of you, and they want you badly!
If you start asking pointed questions that shows you have done your own research, their attitude will shift very quickly, and all of a sudden it won't be so friendly for you any more. Hmmmm. If I were in your situation, I would put on my happy face, ask the study conductors innocent but uncomfortable questions, and find lots of excuses to skip study nights. Take your wifey to dinner. To the movies. Spoil her with attention. If she has a headache, suggest she take the night off. Look up some of the more restrictive rules of this cult. (And there are plenty. The watchtower sociey has given direction on every aspect of life, including appropriate bedroom behavior.) Are some of her very favorite things on this list? Let her know that if she is to be a good witness, she has got to give these things up.
This situation will not be a quick fix. I am talking years here, not months. The mental manipulation is very strong, and your wife is fully hooked. On the plus side, the Watchtower directs wives with "unbelieving" husbands (unbelieving as in not believing everything written by the Watchtower Society) that they are to submit to his authority. So you do have some leverage.
I'm in much the same boat as you....well, sort of. And what Francois has said...do not have children until you resolve this to your satisfaction because, believe me, if you don't you will have tough road ahead of you and so will any children you have. I sit every night and have to listen to my husband drone WT propaganda upon my kids. I have a 4 year old who walks around saying things like "Jehovah will destroy wickedness" and a 7 year old who is terrified that Jehovah is going to kill him if he is bad. Christmas, birthdays, ANY holiday is a holy hell around this house...and a literal holy war breaks out everytime these days roll around.
And all that aside, just wait til your kids want to join something like boy/girl scouts or participate in the swim team through the YMCA. That is when I go ballistic. You will begin to envy those around you who just have a simple and normal life...and desperately long for it with every fiber of your being...you will want, more than anything, for your kids to be able to live a life free of this utter stupidity. Where they can sneeze and receive a hearty "God bless you" from you, without dirty looks from your spouse...where they can come home and openly talk about this month's theme at school being "citizenship". These things that normal people take for granted will be stripped from you and your children. This is by no means an exaggeration. I am not baptized, never have, never will be. My husband isn't either (believe it or not) and this is my life.
I'm not telling you this to scare you or anything, but this is reality. I opened the door to these people years ago. He accepted what they taught as the truth, I did not. I and my kids have been paying for it, ever since. I will regret that day for the rest of my life. Most everyone on here has given excellent advice...please take it. I wish you the best of luck. Take care....
Ok a few quick questions....in "Refuting Jehovah's Witnesses" by Randall Watters, it says that Jesus started out as Michael the Arch-Angel, came to earth as Jesus, and then went back to heaven as Michael. Is this currently believed / taught by them? I have not yet heard it. I mentioned it to my wife, and she thinks I'm making it up. I've also mentioned the fact that they "Wrote their own bible" but she doesn't believe me there either.
Since they don't believe in Hell, how can they explain Revelations and that it mentions "Eternal Punishment"?
Number 1: Here is what the Witnesses' own publication Reasoning from the Scriptures, Page 218, has to say on Michael the Archangel:
Is Jesus Christ the same person as Michael the archangel?
The name of 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 our [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 Jeus would also be the one to take action against he 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 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.
(Underscores mine. These point out the loaded language the Watchtower Society uses to prejudice readers into accepting their [very oftentimes false] conclusions. Note, too, that while the term "archangel" may only appear once in the Scriptures, Michael in Daniel is only "one of the chief princes," thus implying -- LOL -- that there is more than one prince, or archangel. ;) Note, also, that there is no reason why "someone lesser in authority" should sound the trumpet call for the resurrection. After all, according to Witness theology, Jesus is "lesser in authority" than Jehovah God, right? And, too, when a General sends his troops out in battle, even though it could be a major or a captain who was on the scene actually fighting the battle, who is said to have fought and won said battle? Why, the General!)
Number 2: As to whether or not the Witnesses have tampered with the Bible. This is a subject dear to my heart. When I was a Witness and conducting a Bible study with a Catholic woman we got into a discussion over whether or not the bread and wine of communion were actually flesh and blood. (Catholics believe they are transfigured into Jesus' flesh and blood by the prayers of the faithful said over the 'meal' during Mass.) Again, this is what the Reasoning has to say (p. 262-3):
What did Jesus mean when he said, "This is my body," "This is my blood"?
Matt. 26:26-29, JB: "Now as they were eating, Jesus took some bread, and when he had said the blessing he broke it and gave it to the disciples, 'Take it and eat;' he said 'this is my body.' Then he took a cup, and when he had returned thanks he gave it to them. 'Drink all of you from this,' he said 'for this is my blood, the blood of the covenant, which is to be poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins. From now on, I tell you, I shall not drink wine until the day I drink the new wine with you in the kingdom of my Father.' "
Regarding the expressions "this is my body" and "this is my blood," the following is noteworthy: Mo reads, "it means my body," this means my blood." (Italics added) NW reads similarly. LEF renders the expressions, "this represents my body," "this represents my blood." (Italics added.) These renderings agree with that is stated in the contest, in verse 29, in various Catholic editions. Kx reads: "I shall not drink of this fruit of the vine again, until I drink it with you, new wine, in the kingdom of my Father." (Italics added.) CC, NAB, Dy also show Jesus referring to what was in the cup as being "this fruit of the vine," and that was after Jesus had said, "This is my blood."
Consider the expressions "this is my body" and "this is my blood" in the light of other vivid language used in the Scriptures. Jesus also said, "I am the light of the world," "I am the gate of the sheepfold," "I am the true vine." (John 8:12; 10:7; 15:1, JB) None of these expressions implied a miraculous transformation, did they?
At 1 Corinthians 11:25 (JB), the apostle Paul wrote concerning the Last Supper and expressed the same ideas in slightly different words. Instead of quoting Jesus as saying regarding the cup, "Drink all of you from this ... for this is my blood, the blood of the covenant," he worded it this way: "This cup is the new covenant in my blood." Surely that did not mean that the cup was somehow miraculously transformed into the new covenant. Is it not more reasonable to conclude that what was in the cup represented Jesus' blood by means of which the new covenant was validated?
(FYI, bk62, the abbreviations for the Bible versions above are:
JB - Jerusalem Bibles, Mo - Moffat, NW - New World Translation, LEF - Lefevre, Kx - Knox, CC - Confraternity of Christian Doctrine's NT, NAB - New American Bible, Dy - Douay
Now, having been raised a Protestant, and then becoming a JW, I don't believe in the transfiguration. However, there are problems with the Watchtower's arguments:
1/ Just because Moffat and Lefevre agree with the NWT authors doesn't negate the fact that more Bible translators disagree with those translators. Most translators take to heart the Bible's admonition not to add or take away a word from the Bible.
2/ My Bible student's question was not so much what did Jesus "mean" when he said what he did, but what did Jesus "say" about the bread and the wine. It is here that the New World Translation is dishonest. The NWT translates Matthew 26:26-29 as "this means my body" this "means my blood." But if one compares the Greek at 1 Corinthians 11:24,25 which uses "means", to Matthew 26 and Luke 22:19, 20 and Mark 14:22,24 in The Kingdom Interlinear Translation of the Greek Scriptures (published by the Society), based on Westcott and Hort's much touted -- by the JWs -- word for word translation of the Greek, this is what they read:
"this is the body of me"; "this is the blood of me of the covenant".
In the Society's own words on page 5 of the 1969 version of this reference work, the Societe states "To aid such seekers of truth and life is the purpose behind the publishing of The Kingdom Interlinear Translation of the Greek Scriptures. Its literal interlinear English translation is specially designed to open up to the student of the Sacred Scriptures what the original koine Greek basically or literally says, without any sectarian coloration. " (Underscore mine.) Obviously, they had no problem deciding to color their own translation according to their beliefs.
3/ You and your wife might want to further investigate WHY, since the Scriptures DO SAY that all in the congregation are to eat and drink, only a static number of approximately 8,000 worldwide in the last decade actually eat and drink "in remembrance of [Jesus]"? The short answer, of course, is that only the 144,000 are so invited. Is this really so? Also, ask your wife who HER mediator is. If she answers Jesus Christ, ask her to look more closely at JW teachings. Because, unless she professes to be of the 'anointed' she is wrong. Research in Insight in the Scriptures will be necessary to find out more about this little known and alarming JW teaching.)
Number 3: The short answer is that the "eternal torment" or "punishment" referred to in Revelation at Chapters 14:9-11 and 20:10 are explained by Rev. 11:10 where the prophets 'torment those dwelling on the earth' by the public humiliation that the message these prophets bear heaps on its listeners. Also, since "the dead are not conscious of anything at all," (Eccl. 9:5), they cannot experience post-death literal torment. However, they can experience "everlasting cutting-off" or "destruction" in evelation 21:8's "lake of fire." Those experiencing that second death will be "held under restraint forever" along with Satan. Hell is the destruction of "all of a person's life prospects." (Reasoning from the Scriptures, pages 172-174.)
May I here just say that I agree with Francois, please DON'T have any children until you and your bride can agree on what kind of religious upbringing they will have. Life is very sad for JW children. (Read other personal experiences here to learn the pain and trauma of being "different" in so many ways.)
Reading Crisis of Conscience should vaccinate you against this cult. Ask your wife to please read it, and if she still thinks the religion is "the Truth" after that? Well, divorce might be a good thing to consider. (Yes, it's that serious!)