The "immediate future": another typical WTS catch phrase still used

by onacruse 9 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • onacruse

    StinkyPantz sent me a couple of quotes from "the past" that brought back a lot of memories, including this one (bold added):

    *** Awake! October 8 1966 pp.19-20 ***

    In what year, then, would the first 6,000 years of man's existence and also the first 6,000 years of God's rest day come to an end? The year 1975. This is worthy of notice, particularly in view of the fact that the 'last days' began in 1914, and that the physical facts of our day in fulfillment of prophecy mark this as the last generation of this wicked world. So we can expect the immediate future to be filled with thrilling events for those who rest their faith in God and his promises. It means that within relatively few years we will witness the fulfillment of the remaining prophecies that have to do with the 'time of the end.'

    So, did the 1975 debacle teach the WTS any lessons? LOL, yeah, right. Just a few examples:

    *** w95 4/15 p. 17 Jehovah’s Fear-Inspiring Day Is Near *** God Comes Near in Judgment


    As to the immediate future of mankind, the prophecy of Malachi throws light on what is about to happen.

    *** w95 2/1 p. 9 A Great Crowd of True Worshipers—From Where Have They Come? ***

    TOWARD the end of the first century C.E., the apostle John saw visions of marvelous events in connection with Jehovah’s purpose. Some of the things that he saw in vision are being fulfilled right now. Others are due to be fulfilled in the immediate future.

    *** g93 1/8 p. 13 Our Changing World—What Does the Future Really Hold? *** Reasons for Optimism

    Rather than being overcome by pessimism, the Witnesses have an optimistic outlook because they know that the best and greatest changes are soon to take place on this earth. Events since 1914 have fulfilled the prophecies that Jesus gave, marking the time of his invisible presence in Kingdom power and indicating that we are in the time of the end for any human-inspired "new world disorder," as a French writer in Le Monde described the prospects of the immediate future. Jesus said: "When you see these things occurring, know that the kingdom of God is near."—Luke 21:7-32.

    *** w91 4/1 p. 9 Now Is the Time to Seek Jehovah ***


    Therefore, we can see why it is so important that we help others to seek Jehovah now. There are still millions of people who have never met one of Jehovah’s Witnesses or heard the "good news of the kingdom." And how much greater in number the "great crowd" will turn out to be before "the great tribulation," we do not know. But there is certainly the potential for more to seek and find Jehovah God in the immediate future before it is too late. The question now is, What can we do to help myriads more to find God?—Matthew 24:14; Revelation 7:9, 14.

    Talk about not-so-subliminal messaging. Even weather forecasters usually have enough sense not to stick their necks out past next week.


  • starfish422

    From "The Princess Bride":

    Vicini: "He didn't fall?? Inconceivable!!"

    Inigo: "You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means."

  • JeffT

    I think I'm channelling Bill Clinton. It all depends on how you define "immediate." If fifty or sixty years (or more) counts they may be right yet.

  • Elsewhere

    I wonder just how far into the future the "immediate future" can extend... so far it is 37 years.

    LMAO @ Starfish (love that movie)

  • minimus

    Weather forecasters don't have holy spirit, dummy.

  • dedalus

    The "immediate future" is very nearly an oxymoron that means "the present."


  • benext

    It may well be the "immediate future" extends from the actual date of reading. Yeah, that's it.

  • Guest 77
    Guest 77

    Someone should have asked in the question from readers box, their length of time or definition of the 'immediate future'. Maybe their 'immediate future' had reference to their heavenly calling?

    Guest 77

  • onacruse

    Some sense of the time-span envisioned by "immediate future" can be gleaned from:

    (1901) Harvest Gleanings 2 , p. 597

    To our understanding the Scriptures clearly teach that the great time of strife and personal animosity is before us in the immediate future and that the effect of this upon the world will be to more and more take away its peace, its moderation and to let loose its envy, hatred, malice, strife, evil-speaking, etc., until the culmination of all in a period of anarchy, which the Scriptures briefly portray as the time in which “Every man’s hand will be against his neighbor,” and there will be no peace to him that goeth out nor to him that cometh in. The intimation of the Scriptures is that the Lord has had a special restraint over the evil spirits during the past centuries and that that restraint will be relaxed at the present time so that a great lesson may be given to men of what the effect of an evil disposition is, a disposition not subject to God, the disposition of the Adversary. In a short, sharp lesson mankind will learn the exceeding sinfulness of sin and how it utterly destroys peace and everything that makes life happy.

    (1929) Prophecy, p.5

    Because it is now God’s due time to make clear his prophecies, any unbiased student can now see much of the fulfllment thereof. Many of the prophecies apply to the future, but in the light of what is now being fulfllled the immediate future can be well approximated and what is about to befall the world is readily seen.

    p. 18

    From this and other scriptures it will be observed that three things must obtain to prove that the one speaking was truly God’s prophet and representative: (1) He must speak in the name of the Lord; (2) the prophecy that applied to the immediate future must come to pass; and (3) his words must not tend to turn the people away from God but must teach them to be faithful and true to Jehovah. Even though a professed prophet spoke in the name of Jehovah and his prophecy came to pass, yet if it appeared from his words that his speech would induce the people to turn away from Jehovah God, then he was false and must be put away from the people and be put to death.

    (1932) Vindication 2, p. 162

    This promise is sure, and when we see events coming to pass that exactly fit the prophecy we may be able to tell somewhat of the things that are speedily to follow; thus the Lord permits his faithful people to look into the immediate future. He has revealed to these the hideousness of Satan’s organization and given his people assurance that soon it shall be destroyed.

    (1937) Enemies, p. 20

    All those who can answer these questions in the affirmative, who do believe on God and Christ Jesus, and that the Bible is the Word of truth, and who then, without prejudice, will carefully consider what is hereinafter written, will find complete and satisfactory answer to each of the foregoing questions concerning the time of peril, which now confronts the world, and will also see what the immediate future holds.

    (1949) Watchtower, p. 275

    What should prove of still greater comfort to such righteously disposed persons is the grand fact that Jehovah the Lord God Almighty has already produced the Righteous Ruler and has now placed him in the throne of power. His enthronement guarantees many glorious things for the immediate future which will delight the heart of all lovers of righteousness and truth and will more than realize their fondest hopes .

    So, the "immediate future," as defined in the WTS Dictionary of Eschatological Terminology, means somewhat more than 37 (edit: 8, based on the 1995 WT) years...somewhat less than 102 years.

    Like benext says:

    "immediate future" extends from the actual date of reading.

    Just reprint "immediate future" every few years, and the clock restarts.

    Close to 150,000 active JWs that read those words in the 1949 Watchtower have died before "their fondest hopes" were realized. What a pity that they built their hopes on the shifting sands of the WTS.


  • Francois

    At one point, we could expect thrilling events in a matter of weeks or months, not years. Durn. And I was so looking forward to getting a good seat and watching little girls fall into cracks in the earth with their puppies and such as that, as the great creator of the universe pitched a hissy fit.

    Damned undependable if you ask me.


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